Daily Current Affairs Updates– 24th May 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.
· The government on Monday imposed a complete ban on Indian citizens travelling to Libya in view of the on-going conflict in that country, a statement from the Ministry of External Affairs said.
· The travel ban is effective from 3 May, 2016 till further orders.
Chhattisgarh govt aims to dig about 50,000 small ponds
· In the next two-and-a-half years, about 50,000 small ponds will be dug for water conservation, Chief Minister Raman Singh said.
· The state government would provide free land records (‘Khasra copy’) to 36 lakh families in next three months, he said, adding relief of Rs 2,000 crore has been provided to the drought-affected farmers in the state.
· In the next two-and-a-half years, about 50,000 small ponds will be dug for water conservation. This year more than 5,000 dry ponds were filled with water, Singh said.
· Under the Prime Minister’s KrishiSinchayeeYojna, the state had sent a proposal of Rs 53,000 crore to the Centre to enhance irrigation facilities, the Chief Minister said.
· The Sikkim government has banned the use and sale of disposable foam food containers like cups and plates across the state with immediate effect.
· Such containers create huge quantities of environmentally hazardous municipal waste and occupy space in the landfill, Chief Secretary Alok K Shrivastava said.
· Further, the use of mineral water bottles has been restricted in government programmes.
J&K govt to develop app to enhance tourism
· The Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Department is working on a mobile application that will ease the process of booking and reservations to ensure a seamless experience for tourists.
· CM Mehbooba Mufti has called for increased cooperation in the tourism industry in order to make Kashmir a top holiday destination and “provide a rich experience to visitors”.
· The Ministry of Urban Development announced 13 new cities to be developed under the government’s Smart-Cities project.
· The cities include Lucknow, New Town in Kolkata, Bhagalpur, Dharamsala, Chandigarh, Faridabad, Raipur, Ranchi, Warangal, Agartala, Imphal, Port Blair and Panaji. Further, the cities have proposed projects involving a total investment of₹30,229 crore.
US lifts arms ban on old foe Vietnam as regional tensions simmer
· The United States announced an end to its embargo on sales of lethal arms to Vietnam, historic step that draws a line under the two countries’old enmity and underscores their shared concerns about Beijing’s growing military clout.
· The move came during President Barack Obama’s first visit to Hanoi, which his welcoming hosts described as the arrival of a warm spring and a new chapter in relations between two countries that were at war four decades ago
· After 17 years of construction work, the Gotthard Base Tunnel will open for the first time June 1, extending 57 km in length into the bowels of the earth 2,300 meters below the Gotthard massif in the Swiss Alps.
· With speeds reaching up to 250 km/hr, the travel time from one end of the tunnel to the other will take just 20 minutes.
· By December, when the tunnel is fully operational, passengers can expect to reduce their travel time on routes such as Milan to Zurich, and Basel to Luganoby between 25 to 40 minutes.
City Union Bank net profit rises 13 per cent
· City Union Bank has reported a 13.3 per cent increase in its net profit for the fourth quarter ended March 31, 2016 at Rs.112.23 crore against Rs. 99.08 crore in the same period in the previous year.
· The net interest income has risen by 29 per cent to Rs. 264.44 crore during the quarter from Rs. 204.66 crore in the year-ago period.
· For the year ended March 31, 2016, the net profit registered a rise of 12.6 per cent to Rs. 444.69 crore from Rs. 395.02 crore in the previous financial year. The net interest income rose by 21.5 per cent to Rs. 981.03 crore from Rs.807.37 crore.
· Saudi Arabia has joined Turkey, Indonesia and the Jeddah-based Islamic Development Bank (IDB) as a prospective founder member of a new Islamic finance infrastructure bank, according to Indonesia’s finance minister.
· Speaking to Reuters on the sidelines of the annual IDB meeting of governors in Jakarta on Thursday, BambangBrodjonegoro said the four could contribute around $300 million each for the project, with plans calling for the establishment of two regional Islamic banks based in Istanbul and Jakarta.
Bad loans drop further for Andhra Pradesh GrameenaVikas Bank
· At a time when several banks are reeling under high levels of loan defaults, rural lenders are showing how to rein in bad loans.
· Andhra Pradesh GrameenaVikas Bank reduced net non-performing assets (NPAs), or bad loans, to 1.40% in fiscal year 2015-16 from 2.32% in the prior year, especially by employing the Sarfaesi Act.
· The Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002 allows banks to seize and auction properties of willful defaulters to recover loans.
· A US appeals court threw out a nearly $1.3 billion penalty against Bank of America on Monday, concluding the bank had not committed fraud amid the housing bust.
· The federal court ruling overturned an October 2013 jury verdict that Countrywide’s sale of bad loans to mortgage finance firms Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac constituted fraud.
Modi’sgovernment’s fix for banking: Cut number of public banks from 27 now to 6
· Having bitten the bullet on bad loans, India’s state-owned banks now need to merge into half a dozen well-capitalised institutions than can underwrite economic growth, the official overseeing the sector’s overhaul said.
· VinodRai, the veteran bureaucrat appointed this year to run the new Banks Board Bureau, told Reuters the government stood ready to inject fresh funds beyond the $3.7 billion earmarked in the 2016/17 budget.
· Restoring banks to health is vital for Prime Minister NarendraModi to revive lending, investment and create jobs for the million young Indians who join the labour market each month.
· Software services major Infosys today said it has bagged (Capture) a five-year contract from Commerzbank, the second largest bank in Germany.
· As part of the agreement, Infosys will remodel the bank’s investment banking IT architecture, optimise IT processes and evaluate a potential Post-Trade Processing Utility.
· The Utility would then focus on the clustering of trade processing platforms across various product types, it added.
TinyOwl shuts operations in all cities except Mumbai
· India-based restaurant delivery service TinyOwl has reportedly stopped its services in all cities except for Mumbai.
· According to Tech Crunch, the company has raised more than $27 million from investors including Sequoia Capital and Matrix Partners.
· Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra has invested an undisclosed amount in digital storytelling platform for women, SheThePeople.TV, founded by journalist Shaili Chopra.
· Mahindra has invested in his private capacity in the video platform, which is building a much-needed digital media space and ecosystem for women achievers, and is dedicated to championing and promoting their success stories.
Indian Economic Growth Seen At 7.8% In 2017: Deutsche Bank
· Deutsche Bank sees India’s gross domestic product growth at 7.8 per cent in 2017, up from this year’s 7.5 per cent, noting that the economy seems to have bottomed out.
· But for this year, the growth is flattish, forecast at 7.5 per cent – the same as last year.
· India’s economic challenges include the building of judicial and legal systems, especially to settle commercial disputes for businesses.
· Overall, India remains the world’s fastest growing economy, ahead of China’s 6.7 per cent forecast for 2017 and 2016, down from 6.9 per cent in 2015, according to data released by Deutsche Bank.
· Social media giant Facebook on Monday acquired UK-based Virtual Reality audio startup Two Big Ears for an undisclosed amount.
· The startup’s technology has been made free to download as ‘Facebook 360 Spatial Workstation’.
· Founded in 2013 by Varun Nair and Abesh Thakur, the startup specialises in spatial 3D audio in cinematic and gaming experiences.
Mobile wallet companies Paytm, MobiKwik and Oxigen diversifying to combat UPI threat
· Paytm, MobiKwik and Oxigen have rebuffed PayU’s comment that the era of mobile wallets is over, pointing to the millions of Indians who are still unbanked and the growth of smartphones.
· They, however, admit that there may be no space for new entrants or smaller companies, especially with the new payments system – Unified Payments Interface (UPI) – coming in.
· Both Paytm and Oxigen have received in-principle approval from the Reserve Bank of India to operate under the Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS), which will allow people to pay utility bills from anywhere at any time.
· Oxigen expects BBPS to help more than double the company’s wallet user base to 50 million by December next year. PayU also received approval to operate under the BBPS.
· The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cancelled the licences of as many as 181 food establishments in Thane for violation of its guidelines.
· Further, the FDA registered a total of 40 criminal cases in courts in this connection and collected a fine of₹1.65 lakh from the violators, the official added.
· The new SarbanandaSonowal-led government in Assam will take oath in Guwahati on May 24 in presence of Prime Minister NarendraModi.
· Governor PadmanabhaBalakrishnaAcharya dissolved the 13th Assam Assembly under powers conferred by the Constitution.
S K Sharma appointed CMD of Nuclear Power Corporation of India
· Renowned scientist S K Sharma was appointed the Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL).
· Sharma will be responsible for design, construction, commissioning and operation of nuclear power reactors. He has been appointed to the new post for a period of five years.
· At present, Sharma is working as Distinguished Scientist and Director (Operations) in NPCIL.
· The National Aluminium Company Limited (NALCO) has signed a MoU with Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO).
· The signing of the MoU coincided with the official two days state visit of Prime Minister NarendraModi to Iran.
· Key Facts
o The MoU was signed to explore the possibility of setting up smelter- cum-gas based power plant on joint venture in Iran for the proposed smelter plant in Chabahar Free Trade Zone.
o For the proposed smelter plant NALCO will supply alumina from its refinery in India.
o The MoU envisages tolling arrangement with existing smelters in Iran for producing aluminium and also proposes to look into other businesses.
o It also envisages setting up of a joint taskforce comprising NALCO and IMIDRO experts to work out the details of the project.
India, Iran and Afghanistan sign historic land transit trade agreement
· India, Iran and Afghanistan sign historic three-way land transit agreement on Iran’s strategic southern port of Chabahar.
· It was signed by Indian Prime Minister NarendraModi, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani in Teheran, Iran. Under the agreement, India will invest up to 500 million dollars in a deal to develop a strategic port in Iran.
· Chabahar port is strategically located in the Sistan-Balochistan Province on the energy-rich Persian Gulf nation’s southern coast. It lies outside the Persian Gulf and is easily accessed from India’s western coast, bypassing Pakistan.
· General Electric Co. said today that it made a series of deals with Saudi Arabia worth over $1.4 billion as part of the kingdom’s ambitious plan to wean itself off crude oil.
· GE said $1 billion worth of projects would be implemented with the Saudi Arabian Industrial Investments Co, which formed in 2014 by royal order to boost the country’s manufacturing industry.
· Another $400 million would go toward building a forging and casting manufacturing facility for the marine and energy industry in the kingdom, with hopes of it being operations by 2020 and providing over 2,000 jobs, GE said.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY:
· India will get an indigenously — built supercomputer next year as part of the government’s Rs 4,500-crore programme aimed at taking India into an elite league of nations who have made advancements in the field.
· The mission aimed to enable India to leapfrog to the league of world-class computing power nations.
· It is being implemented jointly by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY).
Indian Museum Galleries to Be Available Online via Google Cultural Institute
· Beginning with its prized collection of Buddhist art including the famous Gandhara sculptures, the Indian Museum is now putting all of its galleries for 360-degree panoramic viewing for anyone to see online.
· As part of a tie-up with the Google Cultural Institute, which allows art lovers to explore artifacts from all over the world on its website, the Indian Museum is launching an e-version of its exquisite exhibition titled Indian Buddhist Art on Wednesday.
· The Indian Navy has commissioned indigenously built highly maneuverable Fast Attack Craft INS Tarmugli at the commissioning ceremony held in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.
· INS Tarmugli will be based in Visakhapatnam under the Naval Officer-in-Charge (Andhra Pradesh). It would be deployed for coastal patrol and surveillance operations along the East Coast of India.
· Angelique Kerber’s first grand slam match since winning the Australian Open in January ended in despair after she was beaten 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 by Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands in the French Open first round on Tuesday.
· The German third seed struggled with a shoulder injury in the third set and went off court for treatment when trailing 3-0.
· The break failed to revitalise her, however, and after saving two match points, Kerber surrendered her title hopes with an ill-judged drop shot that failed to clear the net.
Chris Gayle Not Signed By Melbourne Renegades For 2016/17 Big Bash League
· Chris Gayle will not be signed for the Melbourne Renegades for the 2016/17 edition of the Big Bash League after his fresh sexism row. The decision was confirmed by Melbourne Renegades’ chief executive Stuart Coventry.
· Gayle also faces possible censure from his English county club Somerset when he arrives in the UK following his latest controversial remarks to a female journalist in that country. He has since said the comments were made in jest to have a bit of fun.
· Eight-time runner-up Denmark rode on singles success to become first European team to clinch the Thomas Cup badminton title, overcoming record champion Indonesia 3-2 in the final.
· Denmark won all the three singles battles with Viktor Axelsen, Jan O Jorgensen and Hans-KristianVittinghus coming out triumphant to stop Indonesia from extending its record tally of 13 titles.
· Denmark became only the fifth country after Indonesia, China, Malaysia and Japan to win the prestigious badminton team title.
· South Korea and Malaysia won the bronze medals.
Rio Olympic medal winners to be considered for KhelRatna, Arjuna award
· In a bid to ensure that Olympic medallists get immediate recognition, the Sports Ministry today said medal winners from the upcoming Rio Games will be considered for this year’s KhelRatna and Arjuna Awards.
· The ministry the decision has been taken so that athletes need not wait for one full year after their medal-winning performances at the Olympic Games.
· The medal winners in individual events who have already not been conferred with Rajiv Gandhi KhelRatna in the past will be considered for the highest sporting honour.
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