India Inks Social Security Agreement Pact with Australia
- Employees deputed to Australia from India and vice versa need not make double social security contribution.
- Provides the exception to the employees who have been deputed on a short term basis of less than 60 months from paying social security contribution to both the countries.
India and China Exchange Tariff Cut Offers
- Liberalize trade ties as they exchange offers on tariff cuts in goods imports.
- India’s offer to remove 5% of tariff lines under the 16-country Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)
- China has expressed its willingness to abolish equivalent amount of tariff lines for India.
Punjab passed Punjab Sutlej Yamuna Link Canal land Bill 2016
- Bill was passed in contradiction of the construction of contentious Sutlej Yamuna Link.
- Transfer of proprietary rights back to the land owners from whom the land was acquired by the state government for the construction of SYL free of cost.
- allows to transfer free of cost the entire 5,376-acre land to the owners that was acquired for the Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal over three decades ago.
Singareni 600 MW power unit synchronized in Telangana
- Power generation in the first of two 600 MW plants has been synchronized at the Singareni Thermal Power Plant (STPP)
- Telangana will get an additional 1, 200 MW of power from Singareni from May this year.
- The New Plant will ultimately bring down the deficit in power generation in Telangana.
Career Guidance Counselling Centers launched in Delhi
- first of its kind dedicated to women
- Young women seeking employment in the Delhi NCR region can receive career Guidance
- Physical centers will be complemented by a cloud-based platform which provides services such as work readinesss, e-learning, comprehensive mapping of the opportunities existing in the vicinity
India aviation show 2016 begins in Hyderabad
- 5th edition of the India Aviation Show and a five-day biennial aviation show
- Organized by the Union Civil Aviation Ministry and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
- Theme of Indian civil aviation sector is to showcase Potential as global manufacturing hub.
- 25 countries and 200 major participants are expected to take part
- Leading aircraft and helicopter manufacturers such as Boeing, Airbus, Textron,AA Embraer, Gulfstream, Dassault, Agusta Westland, Bell Helicopters, and Russian Helicopters are participating
Punjab Government notified Swine Flu under Epidemic Disease Act
- All the hospitals will have to inform the Department of Health about a case of ILI (Influenza like Illness) having chronic diseases.
- Treatment of swine flu is provided free of cost to all the patients as recommended by the Government.
Lok Sabha clears Aadhaar Bill
- The opposition in Rajya Sabha had recommended five amendments to the Bill.
- Lok Sabha has not incorporated any of these amendments.
Ethics panel to probe bribery charges against TMC MPs
- Issue of alleged unethical conduct of some Trinamool Congress members has been reported to the Ethics Committee of the House.
- The Ethics Committee of the Lok Sabha was constituted on 16 May 2000 as an adhoc committee.
- In August 2015 it was given permanent Standing Committee status.
India ranked 118 in Happiness Index
- Denmark tops the list holding the tag of Happiest Nation in the world
- Followed by Switzerland, Iceland, Norway, Finland, Canada, Netherlands, New Zealand, Australia and Sweden
- USA occupies 13th
Modi’s wax statue at Madame Tussauds Museum
- Modi figured in the Time Magazine’s Person of the Year’s list which gives him enough support to figure in the museum.
- Currently the second most followed politician on twitter after President Obama
4th World Congress of Biosphere Reserves inaugurated in Lima
- World meeting of the Committees of UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Program (MAB)
- Participants include experts from governments, biosphere reserves, local communities, UN agencies, NGOs, academic institutions, and organizations and institutions from all over the world working with the MAB Program.
First Electrical Double decker bus operated in London
- Built by Chinese manufactures BYD, will be able to travel 180 miles on a single charge
- Buses are expected to cost more than £350,000
- Electric buses will lower carbon emissions and help improve London’s air quality
- Buses will come into operation by April
Business and Economy
Four Oil Psus Sign Pacts to Raise Stake in Russian Oil Field
- First MoU was signed between ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), the overseas investment arm of ONGC, and Russia’s Rosneft
- Have signed two separate memorandums of understanding, one Heads of Agreement, and one sale purchase agreement worth $2 billion
- Will increase India’s participation in the Siberian oil and gas fields to 26 per cent from the existing 15 per cent.
SBI Partners With Uber for Instant Vehicle Financing
- The scheme would encourage skilled drivers to overcome liquidity crunch and excess documentation requirements to become an entrepreneur
- Loans could be sanctioned in one day using an inbuilt digital offering.
- Loans would be collateral free as well as carry a very competitive interest rate.
- Loans will be covered under the government’s Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojna Scheme
Gamesa wins solar order from Sri Lanka
- Spain Major Gamesa Wind Turbines has won the solar energy order from LAUGFS Power Ltd in Sri Lanka
- To provide solar power in Baruthankanda village in Sri Lanka.
- The project is expected to commence operations by October.
Science and Technology
Google to submit fresh proposal for Loon Project
- Government has asked Google for a fresh proposal for testing its balloon-based Internet technology for the Loon Project in India
- This is because of interference issues in the frequency band.
- Project Loon is a research and development project being developed by Google X with the mission of providing Internet access to rural and remote areas.
- Project uses high-altitude balloons placed in the stratosphere at an altitude of about 32 km to create an aerial wireless network with up to 3G-like speeds.
- Already tested this technology in New Zealand, California (in the US), and Brazil.
People in News
Michelle Yeoh appointed UNDP goodwill ambassador
- Will focus on raising awareness and mobilizing support for the recently proposed Sustainable Development Goals.
- Will pursue her longstanding passion for global development issues, including gender equality and the eradication of poverty
Merrick Garland nominated for US Supreme Court
- US President Barack Obama has nominated Merrick Garland.
Fazle Kabir appointed as Governor of Bangladesh’s Central Bank
- He is former finance secretary and chairman of Sonali Bank
- Appointment comes from the government after governor Atiur Rahman resigned over the recent cyber heist of $81 million
Ashley Judd appointed U.N. Goodwill Ambassador
- Ashley and UNFPA will be joining forces to raise awareness about women dying while child birth.
- To empower women to choose when and how often to become pregnant.
Shehnai Exponent Ustad Ali Ahmad Hussain Khan Passes Away
- Born on March 21,1939 in Kolkata
- He taught Shehnai at Sangeet Research Academy, Kolkata in 1974
- He represented the Benaras School of Shehnai
- He was regularly featured on All India Radio and Indian Television
Paul Daniels, TV Magician, Dies Aged 77
- Daniels is best known for his BBC TV series The Paul Daniels Magic Show, which ran from 1979 to 1994.
- He achieved international fame through his television series
Andrew Wiles awarded with the Nobel Prize of Mathematics
- Has been awarded the 2016 Abel Prize which is the Nobel Prize equivalent for Mathematics
- He won the award for his proof of Fermat’s Last Theorem which baffled the Mathematicians for more than 300 years.
Paralympics Games began in Arunachal Pradesh
- Three-day event being organized by the Arunachal Pradesh Paralympics Association (APPA) scheduled to be held from March 15 to 17.
- Demand of Corpus fund of Rs.20 Lakh for Paralympic Games, 10 Lakh each for Umang Festival and for procurement of sports goods, boys’ and girls’ hostels for persons with disabilities, their training at SLSA, and appointment of five posts of coaches for them.