Daily Current Affairs Updates–23rd September 2016:
Daily Current affairs News Updates about the National and International events were listed here. Candidates those who are preparing for IBPS/SBI/PO/Clerk exam and all other competitive exams can use this.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY:
BILLS AND ACTS:
India seeks cooperation from BRICS nations to meet shortfall of pulses:i. India has sought cooperation from BRICS nations to meet its production shortfall of crops like pulses and oilseeds. Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said this while addressing the 6th meeting of BRICS Agriculture Ministers in New Delhi.
ii. He said, it will offer business opportunities which could be tapped through innovative model like contract farming, leasing surplus land and conventional trade to meet India's requirements. The BRICS comprises of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Stating that BRICS have ample scope of cooperation in agriculture trade Mr Singh said there is a need to work together to enhance trade by resolving market access issues through suitable institutional mechanisms.
Rajnath holds meeting with Parrikar to review security situation:i. Home Minister Rajnath Singh today held a meeting with Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar in New Delhi to review security situation in the country. The meeting comes in the backdrop of high alert sounded along Maharashtra coast after sighting of suspicious looking persons in Uran.
ii. Two school children in Maharashtra's Uran claimed they saw suspicious looking men near a naval base.
GST Council to finalise tax rate during Oct 17-19 meet:i. Chairing the GST Council meeting today, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that the Council will meet on October 17-19 to decide the GST rate and slabs.
ii. Jaitley added that all cesses will be subsumed in GST. The council further stated that the exemption list will be cut down to 90 items from the current 300 items.
8.4cr kids in India don't attend school: Census:i. Recently released Census 2011 data has revealed two alarming facts: as many as 78 lakh Indian children are forced to earn a livelihood even as they attend schools while 8.4 crore children don't go to school at all.
ii. Although the share of working students is low, compared to the whole student population, the numbers are sufficiently big to show how much importance is placed on education by families and the children themselves. They also point to the increasing cost of education, which should ideally be free for the age group of 5 to 17 years.
iii. Among students who work, 57 per cent are boys, the remaining 43 per cent are girls. Not surprising in a country where women account for only 27 per cent of the workforce because of patriarchal attitudes and lack of jobs force them into domestic work.
India asks SAARC nations to strictly enforce sanctions against terrorist entities, individuals:
i. India has called upon the SAARC nations to strictly enforce internationally mandated sanctions against terrorist entities and individuals.
ii. In his opening remarks at the second Meeting of the High Level Group of Eminent Experts to strengthen the SAARC Anti-Terrorism Mechanism in New Delhi.
iii. Director of Intelligence Bureau, Dineshwar Sharma has called upon the member States to ratify and enable various Conventions enacted by the SAARC grouping, including the Convention on Suppression of Terrorism and mutual assistance in Criminal Matters.
i. Saudi Arabia is celebrating its 86th National Day today with a strategic vision to take the Kingdom to new heights of progress and prosperity under the leadership of King Salman.
ii. In his message on the day, King Salman underscored the significance of security and stability. United Arab Emirates also joins Saudi Arabia's National Day celebrations.
Magnitude-5.3 quake jolts Tibet: USGS:
i. The US Geological Survey reports that a magnitude-5.3 earthquake has hit Tibet. The Chinese news agency Xinhua says the temblor hit Litang County, Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Garze, in China's Sichuan Province at 1:23 AM early morning today. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries. The quake hit about 104 kilometers southwest of Rulong and the epicenter had a depth of about 25 kilometers.
i. A magnitude 6.4 earthquake has occurred off Japan’s coast, the US Geological Survey reports. The quake hit at around early morning today, about 149 kilometers southeast of the city of Katsuura in the southern Chiba Prefecture.
ii. The epicenter was located at a depth of 10 kilometers. There were no immediate reports of damages or casualties. According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, minor tremors were felt in nine different prefectures.
i. A top American think-tank has said, two years of the NDA government have instituted significant reforms including the passing of the GST bill in India.
ii. Noting that India has managed to combat inflation, the Hudson Institute said the country has the potential to hit double-digit growth rates if it focuses on modernising infrastructure, improving basic amenities and reducing red-tapism.
iii. In its recent report titled 'Modi Two years On', the think-tank has analysed two years of the government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and said it has instituted significant reforms, with the most significant of them being passing of the GST bill. It said the bill will over time create a much needed pan-Indian market.
AWARDS AND HONORS:
i. An Indian-American physician and author, Abraham Varghese, has been presented with the National Humanities Medal, America's highest humanities award, by President Barack Obama.
ii. He was presented with the medal for his contribution in the field of medicine along with several other recipients at a ceremony held at the White House yesterday. Currently a professor of medicine at the Stanford School of Medicine, Varghese has authored several acclaimed books.
iii. Started in 1997, the National Humanities Medal honors individuals or groups whose work has deepened the nation's understanding of the human experience, broadened citizens' engagement with history, literature, languages, philosophy, and other humanities subjects. As many as 12 medals are awarded each year.
i. UK-based University of Oxford was ranked the best university in the world in Times Higher Education university Rankings, pushing US-based California Institute of Technology, the five-time topper of the list, to the second spot. Stanford University, University of Cambridge, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology took the third, fourth, and fifth spots respectively.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY:
i. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said that the exemption threshold for Goods and Services Tax, GST has been fixed at 20 lakh rupees. Speaking to media after the 2nd day of GST council meeting in New Delhi, Mr Jaitley said, the exemption threshold for GST in North-Eastern states has been fixed at 10 lakh rupees. He said, the council will meet once again on 30th of this month to finalise and approve draft rules of GST.
Centre is focused to spend on infrastructure to create smooth logistics experience for industries: Sitharaman:
i. Centre is focussed to spend on infrastructure to create smooth logistics experience for industries. Addressing a two-day Invest North Summit in New Delhi Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, the interaction between industry and government is essential.
ii. The Minister said, on ease of doing business, nearly 12 states have satisfied 75 per cent of the conditions, which is a positive step. The Minister also said, while trying to boost inland waterways, north Indian states will be the first beneficiary.
Apple partners Flipkart to sell iPhone 7 in India:
i. Technology giant Apple has partnered with e-commerce company Flipkart to sell its latest smartphones, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus in India from October 7. Flipkart will source the phones directly from Apple instead of its third-party sellers. The price of iPhone 7 starts at Rs. 60,000, whereas the base iPhone 7 Plus model is priced at Rs. 72,000.
i. China-based telecom firm Huawei will start manufacturing its smartphones in India from next month, the company said today. The plant will be operated along with its Indian arm Flextronics International in Chennai, a Huawei statement read. Further, the firm will also expand its retail network in the country, increasing it to over 50,000 outlets it partners with, by 2016-end.
MOUS AND AGGREMENT:
i. India and France on Friday signed the Euro 7.87-billion deal for Rafale fighter jets, equipped with latest missiles and weapon system besides multiple India- specific modifications that will give the IAF cutting edge capability over arch rival Pakistan.
ii. The deal+ was signed by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and his visiting French counterpart Jean Yves Le Drian sixteen months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced India's plans to buy 36 Rafale fighter aircraft in fly away condition during his trip to France.
iii. The deal comes with a saving of nearly 750 million Euros+ , gained through hard negotiations by the Indian side, over the one struck during the previous UPA government, which was scrapped by the Narendra Modi government, besides a 50 per cent offset clause.
i. State-run BSNL will introduce lifetime free voice plans from 2017, Chairman and Managing Director Anupam Shrivastava has said, responding to Reliance Jio's entry into the telecom market. However, this service will cover both 2G and 3G users unlike Jio, which caters to only 4G subscribers, reports said. This plan will be cheaper than Jio's service, Shrivastava added.
Afghanistan signs peace deal with Hezb-i-Islami:
i. Afghanistan has signed a peace agreement with Hezb-i-Islami, paving the way for the armed group's commander, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, to make a political comeback despite allegations of war crimes during the 1990s. Government officials praised yesterday's agreement in the capital Kabul as a step towards peace, while critics said it opened the door to one of the most infamous figures in Afghanistan's civil war to play a role in the country's already divisive politics.
ii. The United States has lauded the peace agreement signed between Afghanistan and Hizb-e Islami Gulbuddin, appreciating the step to seek a peaceful resolution through political dialogue and negotiation, spokesman of the National Security Council, the White House, Ned Price said yesterday. The deal with the largely dormant Hezb-i-Islami marks a symbolic victory for President Ashraf Ghani.
Google to partner Maha govt to make Mumbai 'WiFi city':
i. Following a meeting between Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and technology giant Google during his four-day visit to USA, his office has said that Google "has extended support in making Mumbai a WiFi city". Under the government's Smart City initiative, Maharashtra has been planning to install over 1,200 WiFi hotspots in Mumbai.
BOOKS and AUTHORS:
i. President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi today launched Vice President Mohd Hamid Ansari's book titled "Citizen and Society" at Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi.
ii. Describing Mr Ansari's life as that of a perfect citizen, the President said, the theme of the book is that a citizen cannot be apolitical and has to take part in politics to build the society. Speaking on the occasion, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, it is a matter of pride that India has hundreds of languages, various religions and beliefs.
The National Society for Change for Childhood Cancer in India will organise a first-of-its-kind exhibition on childhood cancer awareness at the Taj Mahal in Agra from September 25-27. The exhibition will include a 'Chalo Chalein Taj' programme under which around 1,500 cancer-affected children will visit the monument. Childhood cancer survivors will also perform a street play at the event.
I. A three-day International Seafood Show will be held in Visakhapatnam starting Friday. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu will inaugurate the event, which will see the participation of 2,000 delegates from India and 200 from abroad. The event will lay stress on safe and sustainable Indian aquaculture, diversification of species, and augmenting the infrastructure to improve exports.
I. China's Yangzhou city is set to host India Week celebrations from tomorrow with a business and investment meeting to be attended by CEOs of top Indian firms. The city in coastal Jiangsu province has been an important business partner for India in the Eastern China Region. Consulate General of India in Shanghai, Prakash Gupta, said companies in Yangzhou have shown keen interest in investing in India as part of the projects available under the 'Make in India' initiative. He said, Secretary of the ruling Communist Party of China's Yangzhou unit, Xie Zhengyi, will soon lead an investors' delegation to India to explore opportunities for investment.
ii. As part of Yangzhou's International Cuisine Festival, an 'Incredible India Pavilion' will also be inaugurated tomorrow, showcasing select Indian food delicacies and for promoting tourism-related travel options for Yangzhou visitors to India.
i. The Indian army and US troops participated in a joint training operation in the Uttarakhand hills, as a part of the ongoing 'Yudh Abhyas 2016' exercise, a defence official said. The troops practised small tactical operations as well as specialised mountain warfare techniques. The joint training provided valuable inputs to enhance warfare preparedness, the official added.
i. Russian and Pakistan armies to hold joint military exercises from Saturday. This is the first time the two nations are holding joint military drills. Exercises signify deepening military cooperation between the two countries
BILLS AND ACTS:
i. The Centre is to make a renewed drive to overhaul labour laws, hoping to create millions of new jobs by making it easier to hire and fire. Modi made a shake-up of the labour market a part of his reform agenda after coming into office in 2014, but opposition from unions and a bruising battle to pass other crucial pieces of economic legislation have stalled those efforts.
ii. Shankar Aggarwal, the ministry secretary, told Reuters that the government felt the time was right to prioritise labour reform again after parliament in August passed India's biggest overhaul of indirect taxes, the Goods and Services Tax (GST), a victory for Modi's bid to boost the economy.
PERSONS IN NEWS:
i. Patanjali Ayurved Managing Director and primary stakeholder Acharya Balkrishna has debuted on the Forbes' 'India's 100 Richest People' list, with a net worth of $2.5 billion. Balkrishna holds 97% of Patanjali Ayurved, which he Co-founded with Yoga guru Baba Ramdev in 2006, according to Forbes. Patanjali generated $780 million revenue selling products like cosmetics, noodles, and jams.
i. Kingfisher Airlines former CFO A Raghunathan to 18-months in jail for furnishing two cheques of Rs 50 lakh each to GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd, which bounced.
ii. Special Magistrate M Krishna Rao said Kingfisher Airlines was using various facilities offered by the airport without making adequate payments to them. The special magistrate court on April 20, 2016, convicted the company's chairman Vijay Mallya along with Raghunathan for violating various provisions of the Negotiable Instruments Act.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY:
i. Mobile operating system Android was initially created and developed by a startup Android Inc., which was later acquired by tech giant Google in 2005 for a reported $50 million. The first version of Android was launched 8 years ago on September 23, 2008, and the operating system presently accounts for nearly 80% of the mobile OS market share globally.
i. American researchers have revealed blind people use the visual processing region of the brain besides the region associated with numerical reasoning, to do math. An MRI study on blind-since-birth individuals found the activity in the visual cortex increased with problem complexity. The finding challenges the idea that brain tissue intended for one function is only limited to closely related tasks.
i. In the opening Cricket Test against India at Kanpur, New Zealand were 152 for 1 in their first innings, when rain washed out the final session on the second day today. Kiwi captain Kane Williamson, 65, and Tom Latham on 56, were at the crease, at the stroke of tea when the heavens opened up rendering the field unplayable.
ii. Earlier, resuming their first innings at their overnight 291 for 9, India were bowled out for 318 runs in the morning session.They added 27 more runs to their overnight score before Umesh Yadav was fell for 9. Ravindra Jadeja remained unbeaten on 42.
The scores so far: India First innings - 318 all out.
New Zealand first innings - 152 for one.
i. India added five more medals, including three gold, on day four of the ISSF Junior World Cup in Gabala, Azerbaijan. With this, India's medals tally in the junior shooting world cup swells to 23. India has won a total of nine gold in the competition to be ranked second in the medals tally behind Russia.
ii. India won two team gold medals in the men’s and women’s 25 meter pistol events respectively. The third gold of the day came in the individual men’s 25 meter pistol competition. The day's only silver came in the men's 25m pistol. India’s bronze of the day was won by the women’s trap team.
i. BCCI has appointed a new selection panel. Ajay Shirke has been re-elected as the BCCI secretary. MSK Prasad, former wicket-keeper has been elected as the chief-selector. Other members include Jatin Paranjpae, Devan Gandhi, Gagan Khoda and Sarandeep Singh. The decision was taken in the 87th Annual General Meeting of the BCCI in Mumbai.
Hindi and Urdu writer Reoti Saran Sharma passes away in New Delhi:
i. Well known Hindi and Urdu writer Reoti Saran Sharma died in New Delhi today. He was 92 years. He was a Pioneer in radio plays in All India Radio and was conferred with Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for 2007 for his contribution to theatre. He was also awarded Sahitya Kala Parishad and Ghalib Award.