Current Affairs: 10 June 2017

National Events

AYUSH Minister to inaugurate the second edition of National Health Editors’ Conference on Yoga

  • The second National Health Editors’ Conference on Yoga was inaugurated by Minister of State for AYUSH (Independent Charge), Shri Shripad Yesso Naik at National Media Centre in New Delhi. 
  • The conference is being organized by Ministy of AYUSH in association with Press Information Bureau (PIB), M/o Information & Broadcasting and Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy (M/o AYUSH) as a part of celebrations of the 3rd International Day of Yoga on 21st June, 2017. 
  • The theme of this year’s conference is “Yoga for Health and Harmony”.
  • The aim of the conference is to give insight to the journalists about the scientific aspects of yoga & its benefits for human health. 
  • More than 150 Health Editors and media persons from National, Regional and International media organizations are expected to attend the conference. Senior officers of PIB and Ministry of AYUSH will also remain present on the occasion.

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Aadhaar linkage with PAN mandatory

  • The Supreme Court on Friday upheld the government’s decision to link Aadhaar with the permanent account number (PAN) for the filing of income tax returns, but ruled that non-compliance with the law will carry no retrospective criminal consequences.
  • Under the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016, the unique identity number is mandatory only to receive social welfare benefits. 
  • But according to the provisions of the Finance Act 2017, the Aadhaar number or Aadhaar enrolment number will be mandatory to file income tax returns and to apply for a new PAN.
  • An existing PAN can be declared void if the taxpayer does not link it with Aadhaar by 31 July, 
  • Aadhaar is also mandatory to obtain or retain PAN. However, permanent account numbers of those without Aadhaar will not be invalidated for the time being.

SATH program launched by NITI Aayog

  • Furthering the agenda for cooperative federalism, NITI Aayog has launched SATH, a program providing ‘Sustainable Action for Transforming Human capital’ with the State Governments. 
  • The vision of the program is to initiate transformation in the education and health sectors. The program addresses the need expressed by many states for technical support from NITI .
  • SATH aims to identify and build three future ‘role model’ states for health systems. 
  • NITI will work in close collaboration with their state machinery to design a robust roadmap of intervention, develop a program governance structure, set up monitoring and tracking mechanisms, hand-hold state institutions through the execution stage and provide support on a range of institutional measures to achieve the end objectives. 
  • The program will be implemented by NITI along with McKinsey & Company and IPE Global consortium, who were selected through a competitive bidding process.
  • To select the three model states, NITI defined a three-stage process – expression of interest, presentations by the states and assessment of commitment to health sector reforms.


Indian Railway conducts first HR Round Table conference

  • Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said that Human Resource (HR) policy of the railways ought to be revisited as most often wrong people have been assigned with the wrong jobs.
  • Mr Prabhu today inaugurated the first HR Round Table Conference of the Indian Railways while senior officials including Chairman of the Railway Board AK Mittal, Staff member Pradeep Kumar and other Board Members were present on the occasion.
  • This initiative is focused towards providing the Indian Railway with exposure to the management practices in accordance with the current times so that the vast organisation can incorporate required measures and cover up the gap that it has been lagging behind its global competitors.
  • The people in the organisation need to take a decision of change,’ the technology keeps changing and unless we keep up with the changing technology different practices and environment we cannot progress’ the minister said emphasizing on the fact that the people within the organisation need to take the initiative of continuous introspection and identifying own shortcomings.


President Pranab Mukherjee launches 'Selfie with Daughter' mobile app

  • President Pranab Mukherjee today launched the 'Selfie with Daughter' mobile application, aimed at raising awareness about female foeticide and sex selection. 
  • Mukherjee urged people to take photographs with their daughters and upload them to make the campaign a success. 
  • " 'Selfie with Daughter' has become a worldwide movement against female foeticide and sex selection," 
  • The aim of the campaign is to motivate society to feel proud to be parents of a girl child, which, in turn, will result in improving child sex ratio. 


From June 16, Petrol, Diesel Prices Will Be Revised Daily

  • State-run fuel retailers will revise petrol and diesel prices daily from June 16,
  • Daily revision of petrol and diesel prices has already been implemented on a pilot basis in five cities - Udaipur, Jamshedpur, Visakhapatnam, Chandigarh, and Puducherry - from May 1. "After its successful implementation, public sector oil companies have now decided to start daily revision in retail selling prices of petrol and diesel in the entire country with effect from 16th June, 2017,"
  • Indian Oil said daily revision in oil prices will make retail prices more reflective of the current market conditions, besides leading to increased transparency in the system. 
  • This, country's biggest fuel retailer said, will enable smoother flow of products from refinery/depots to the retailers.


DigiYatra: A new digital experience for air travellers



  • DigiYatra’ initiative aims to bring together the entire industry to develop a digital ecosystem that will deliver Indian customers a seamless, consistent and paperless service experience at every touch point of their journey.
  • DigiYatra initiative envisages providing airline travellers in India a pioneering ‘digitally unified flying experience’ across all stages of their journey. 
  • All aviation stakeholders – airlines, airport operators, security and immigration agencies, cab operators, retail establishment and others – are working to devise digital standards which can enable seamless exchange of data and information. 
  • He said that these standards can power unique applications which can deliver a delightful experience for air travellers.

International Events

UK Election results 2017

  • Latest general election results from the UK’s 650 constituencies. 
  • Theresa May’s gamble has failed; the Conservatives have lost their parliamentary majority and have turned to the DUP to support them in forming a new government. Search for your own seat by name or postcode and find out your local result
  • Jeremy Corbyn's Labour party increased its tally by 31 seats. But an anti-Tory coalition is still not viable without the DUP. One constituency is still to declare. 
  • The count was suspended in Kensington after three recounts failed to establish a winner.

UK election: 2 Sikh MPs add to record Indian set in House of Commons

  • There is much delight in Britain’s Sikh community over the election of Preet Kaur Gill – the first Sikh woman MP – and Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi – the first turban-wearing Sikh MP – whose presence in the House of Commons increases the Indian-origin group from 10 to a record 12.
  • All 10 Indian-origin lawmakers in the previous Parliament expectedly retained their seats, with Dhesi (Slough) and Gill (Birmingham Edbaston) – both Labour – taking forward the “Indian” participation in British politics that began with Dadabhai Naoroji being elected in Finsbury Central in 1892.


Wal-Mart Tops Fortune 500 List

  • Fortune magazine is out with its annual list of America's top 500 companies. The list has been a measure of the country's most valuable businesses since it first came out in 1955. This year, the combined total revenue of all 500 companies reaches $12.1 trillion, 65 percent of the U.S. GDP.
  • . Walmart came in first this year again, holding the spot for five years in a row. 
  • Competitors like Amazon, ranked 12th by revenue
  • These companies ranked in the top 5 on the Fortune 500 list:
  • 1. Walmart Stores: Revenue (2016): $485.9 billion
  • 2. Berkshire Hathaway: Revenue: $223.6 billion
  • 3. Apple: Revenue: $215.6 billion
  • 4. ExxonMobil: Revenue: $205 billion
  • 5. McKesson: Revenue: $192.5 billion


SCO Summit begins in Astana

  • The 17th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit began in Kazakhstan capital Astana 
  • The leaders of India, China, Russia and Central Asian countries will discuss ways to combat terrorism and boost trade, including peace and security in the region at the SCO Summit in the wake of the terror strikes in many countries.
  • India is set to join as full member of the SCO comprising China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
  • The highlight of this year's summit is the accession of India and Pakistan to the SCO. With their induction, the SCO will expand its geographical coverage to South Asia and become one of the biggest regional organisations.


Sports

Stan Wawrinka oldest French Open finalist in 44 years



  • Stan Wawrinka became the oldest French Open finalist in 44 years on Friday with an epic 6-7 (6/8), 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (7/3), 6-1 win over world number one Andy Murray.
  • The 2015 champion will face nine-time winner Rafael Nadal, who defeated Dominic Thiem 6-3,6-4, 6-0 in the second semis, for the title after avenging his loss to Murray at the same stage in Paris last year.
  • US Open champion Wawrinka, 32, triumphed in a pulsating four hour 34 minute battle of shotmaking and endurance and will target a fourth Slam title on Sunday.
  • For Murray, his wait to become Britain's first men's champion in Paris since Fred Perry in 1935 goes on.



Banking & Finance

SBI Cuts Home Loan Interest Rate



  • State Bank of Bank on Friday announced a reduction in interest rate on new home loan above Rs. 75 lakh. Effective June 
  • 15, 2017, SBI home loans above Rs. 75 lakhs be cheaper by 10 basis points or 0.1 per cent. The revised interest rates will be 8.55 per cent for salaried women borrowers. For others, the rate of interest will be 8.60 per cent, India's largest home loan provider said. 
  • This is the second reduction in interest rates in two months, SBI said, adding that home loan rates offered are "lowest in the industry".
  • For new home loans for up to Rs. 30 lakh, SBI had last month reduced interest rate to 8.35 per cent.



TCS launches BaNCS app development kit to help banks create apps



  • Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has announced the launch of the BaNCS app development kit that will help financial institutions develop their own apps and deploy it across devices.
  • The project was driven by the need for banks to have an App Development Environment where they can carry out business processes, products and services as a series of applications connected to its core functions.
  • While the application comes with its own presets, it can also be modified by the user banks to launch their own designed widgets in the app and utilise them for publishing.
  • TCS BaNCS aims to expand to become a chief deliverer of core systems for banking, insurance and capitals markets industries worldwide.



Canara Bank, New India tie up



  • Canara Bank and the New India Assurance Company have entered into a corporate agency arrangement for distribution of insurance products. 
  • The pact allows Canara Bank to offer non-life insurance products to its customers across metros and tier II and III cities through the bank’s extensive network of over 6,000 branches. 
  • The pact also strengthens distribution network of New India Assurance.
  • Under the agreement, New India Assurance will make offer a bouquet of products — such as motor, home, health, travel, fire, marine, and engineering insurance policies — through branches of Canara Bank.



Awards & Honours

Muttiah Muralitharan to be inducted into ICC Hall of Fame during Champions Trophy



  • Legendary off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan, the first cricketer from his country to be voted into the ICC Hall of Fame, will be formally inducted during the ICC Champions Trophy in England later this year
  • He will also be joined by former Australia captain Karen Rolton, Arthur Morris and Englishman George Lohmann, who were voted by ICC Cricket Hall of Famers and a section of the media.



RedInk Awards recognise India’s best journalists



  • The Mumbai Press Club’s RedInk Awards for Excellence in Indian Journalism, 2017, were presented on Wednesday evening at a glittering awards ceremony at the National Centre for Perfoming Arts. With 15 categories, they are the biggest journalism awards in India where winners are chosen by their peers.
  • Veteran journalist Vinod Dua was recognised with the Lifetime Achievement Award and Raj Kamal Jha was presented the Journalist of the Year award.
  • Raj Kamal Jha, Chief Editor of the Indian Express, was named Journalist of the Year
  • In the Politics category, R.K. Radhakrishnan of Frontline won the print award, and NDTV’s Sreenivasan Jain won for television.
  • The Mumbai Press Club introduced a new award this year, Mumbai’s Star Reporter. Govind Tupe of Sakal won it for his dogged work helping empower civil society.



Richard Ford, US novelist, wins top Spanish award



  • US writer Richard Ford, author of such novels as Independence Day and The Lay of the Land, has won the 2016 Princess of Asturias award for literature.
  • The 50,000 euro (£39,500) award is one of eight handed out yearly.
  • Previous recipients include US writer Philip Roth, playwright Arthur Miller and the Irish novelist John Banville.
  • Born in 1944, Ford published his first novel, A Piece of My Heart, in 1976 before becoming a journalist for a New York sports paper.



Science & Technology

Scientists find world's oldest fossil mushroom



  • Roughly 115 million years ago, when the ancient supercontinent Gondwana was breaking apart, a mushroom fell into a river and began an improbable journey. 
  • Its ultimate fate as a mineralized fossil preserved in limestone in northeast Brazil makes it a scientific wonder, scientists report in the journal PLOS ONE.
  • The mushroom somehow made its way into a highly saline lagoon, sank through the stratified layers of salty water and was covered in layer upon layer of fine sediments. 
  • In time -- lots of it -- the mushroom was mineralized, its tissues replaced by pyrite (fool's gold), which later transformed into the mineral goethite,



Appointments

SEBI clears Limaye as NSE chief

Capital market regulator SEBI has given conditional approval for the appointment of Vikram Limaye as the MD and CEO of the NSE.
In February, Limaye, MD and CEO of infrastructure financing company IDFC, was selected to head NSE after its incumbent chief Chitra Ramakrishna put in her papers in December.
SEBI had delayed clearing his appointment as he was also part of the four-member Supreme Court-appointed panel managing the affairs of the Board of Control for Cricket in India. His term with the BCCI ends in August.
NSE said SEBI has approved the appointment of Vikram Limaye as MD and CEO of the National Stock Exchange of India, subject, to his being relieved from his BCCI assignment, among other things. The appointment will take effect from the date of joining, it added.

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