Current Affairs : 16 August 2016

Union Government constitutes National Committee on Trade Facilitation

  • The Union Government has constituted a National Committee on Trade Facilitation (NCTF) to develop the pan-India road map for trade facilitation. 
  • It has been constituted in line with the World Trade Organisation (WTO’s) Trade Facilitation Agreement (FTA), which India also has ratified. 
  • The NCTF will inter – ministerial body on trade facilitation and will be headed by Pradeep Kumar Sinha, who is the Cabinet Secretary of India.

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India’s first facility to produce nickel launched by HCL in Jharkhand

  • India’s first facility to produce nickel was launched by the Hindustan Copper Limited (HCL) at its Indian Copper Complex (ICC) at Ghatshila in Jharkhand. 
  • The new facility “Nickel, Copper and Acid Recovery Plant” will be first facility in India to produce nickel metal of London Metal Exchange (LME) grade from primary resource.

IISc bags maximum number of INSA Medals for Young Scientists

  • Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has bagged the 5 Medals for Young Scientists award 2016. 
  • It was awarded by the Indian National Science Academy (INSA). The winners from IISc this year are: Prabeer Barpanda, Sai Siva Gorthi, Praveen Kumar, Anshu Pandey and Chandan Saha.

Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Sonam Kapoor win top awards at IFF Melbourne

  • Bollywood star actors Sonam Kapoor and Nawazuddin Siddiqui bagged the best actress and best actor awards at the Indian Film Festival (IFF) of Melbourne 2016. 
  • The theme for this year 2016 is ‘Women Empowerment’. Angry India Goddesses, will bring the curtains down for the festival.

South Indian Bank, SBI Card to launch co-branded credit card

  • Kochi Based leading private sector Lender South Indian Bank, leading private sector bank, and SBI Card, one of India's leading Credit Card issuers, announced the launch of co-branded credit cards for the customers of South Indian Bank. 
  • Through this alliance South Indian Bank and SBI Card will launch two variants of credit card on VISA platform, namely South Indian Bank Platinum SBI Card and South Indian Bank SimplySAVE SBI Card.

UBI launches USSD based mobile app for basic banking needs with NPCI

  • National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) ties up with Union Bank of India to launch an USSD based *99# mobile application for their customers. 
  • This application can be downloaded in an android smartphone from the Google Play Store by the bank customers and can be used even without any internet connection as it does not require any data.

IRDAI Slaps Rs 35 Lakh Fine On Bharti AXA General Insurance

  • Insurance watchdog, IRDAI has imposed Rs 35 lakh fine on Bharti AXA General Insurance Co Ltd for violation of various norms including outsourcing activities and corporate governance guidelines. 
  • The fine is based on violation related with an inspection finding during December 2012 to March 2013.

Smart Ganga City programme launched in 10 cities

  • Union Ministers M Venkaiah Naidu and Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti has jointly launched 'Smart Ganga City' programme in 10 cities located along Ganga to set up Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) and improve drainage network there on hybrid annuity mode on public private partnership basis. 
  • Haridwar, Rishikesh, Mathura, Varanasi, Kanpur, Allahabad, Lucknow, Patna, Sahibganj and Barrackpore are the cities/town where the programme will be implemented in the first phase.

Microsoft acquires gaming startup Beam

  • Microsoft has acquired Beam, an interactive live streaming startup that lets viewers watch and play along with game streamers in real time and did not disclose financial terms of the deal. Beam, launched in January this year, has 24 employees. 
  • The move will support Microsoft's growth strategy around Xbox Live, one of the world's most popular social gaming platform.

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