Current Affairs: 20 July 2017

Published on Thursday, July 20, 2017

National Events

TR Zeliang sworn in as Nagaland chief minister

  • Sixty-five-year-old TR Zeliang returned as Nagaland chief minister after a gap of more than five months when governor PB Acharya sworn him in at Raj Bhawan at Kohima, hours after dismissing Shurhozelie Liezietsu.
  • A graduate from Arts College of Kohima, Zeliang served as a minister in Congress government, led by SC Jamir. In 2003, he broke away from Congress and formed the Nagaland Congress with six other Congress members only to merge with Naga People's Front.
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Naveen Patnaik dedicates Odisha’s longest bridge to nation

  • Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today dedicated to the nation the state’s longest bridge and named it after Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.
  • The 2.88 km bridge over the river Kathajodi will connect the state capital of Bhubaneswar with Cuttack reducing the distance between the two cities by 12 km.
  • Patnaik said he was delighted to name the state’s longest bridge after Netaji who was born and brought up in Cuttack. Although the construction work of the bridge started after Patnaik laid the foundation in February 2011, the completion missed the deadline by over three years.

Supreme Court allows Centre to replace MCI oversight committee

  • The Supreme Court allowed the Centre to replace the oversight committee set up to supervise the functioning of the Medical Coucil of India (MCI) with a fresh panel of five eminent doctors.
  • A five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice J S Khehar, said the Centre had proposed the names of five eminent doctors to replace the oversight committee whose term had just expired.
  • It also gave the Centre liberty to replace any doctor in the list with another if he does not wish to be a part of the oversight committee.
  • MCI had contended that the directions of the constitution bench which had set up the oversight committee were based on certain material which could not be controverted at the time of the order.

Maha approves revised policy of scheme aimed to improve girl child ratio

  • The Maharashtra government today approved a revised policy of the 'Majhi Kanya Bhagyashree' scheme, according to which families who have a yearly income of upto Rs 7.5 lakh will be benefited.
  • The scheme, launched by the state government on April 1, 2016 in place of 'Sukanya' scheme, is aimed at improving the skewed girl child ratio, prevent sex determination and female foeticide, and support female education. 
  • According to the earlier provisions, the 'Majhi Kanya Bhagyashree' scheme catered to girls from Below Poverty Line (BPL) families and those whose annual income was upto Rs 1 lakh. 
  • According to the revised provisions, families having an income upto Rs 7.5 lakh will be eligible for the scheme, an official from the Chief Minister's Office said. 
  • As per the revised provisions after bearing the first girl child, if the mother or the father undergoes a family planning operation, a sum of Rs 50,000 shall be deposited in a bank in the name of the girl child. 
  • Also, if any of the parents undergo a family planning operation after bearing the second girl child, a sum of Rs 25,000 shall be deposited in the name of both children. 
  • The girl will be able to withdraw the interest money twice - once she attains 6 years of age and when she turns 12. 

UIDAI Launches mAadhaar app

  • The UIDAI or Unique Identification Authority of India has launched a new mobile app, called mAadhaar, that will negate the need to carry the Aadhaar card in wallets. 
  • Users of this mAadhaar app will have all the demographic details of Aadhaar card in their smartphones. 
  • Information like name, date of birth, gender and address along with the user's photograph (that is linked with Aadhaar card) will be available in the app.
  • The app comes with a biometric lock/unlock feature to secure the personal data. Once a user enables the lock system, the app remains locked till he/she chooses to either unlock it (which is temporary) or disable the locking system. 
  • It also has a "TOTP generation" (Time-Based One-Time Password) process which can be used instead of SMS-based OTP.

Shala Siddhi Prohatsan Yojana started in 25,000 MP schools

  • In order to provide qualitative education to the students, 'Hamari Shala Kaisi Ho' and 'Shala Siddhi Karyakram' are being implemented by the School Education department in Government schools of the State.
  • The State Education Centre has started Shala Siddhi Prohatsan Yojana to encourage best works under this programme. The Shala Siddhi Prohatsan Yojana has been started in 25,000 schools of the State till date.
  • A time table has been fixed for the award process. According to the time table, selection committees at block level will be formed by the district core committees till July 22.
  • The selected schools will forward their applications for Shala Siddhi Karyakram to Sankul Principals till July 28. 
  • The selection committee will forward applications of 3 primary and 3 middle schools for awards to District Institute for Education and Training (DIET).
  • The selected schools at block level will be awarded at District Head Quarters on the occasion of Independence Day Celebration programme.

International Events

UAE Minister of State for Tolerance 'most powerful Arab woman in government'

  • Arab's Minister of State for Tolerance has topped a poll of the most powerful Arab women in government this year,
  • Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi was followed by two women from Egypt - Sahar Nasr, the country’s minister of investment and international cooperation, and Ghada Wali, the minister of social solidarity.
  • Forbes has also released a list of the top 100 most powerful Arab businesswomen for 2017, and the UAE represents the highest number of women, with 18, followed by Egypt, with 16.
  • Saudi Arabia’s Lubna Olayan, who runs Saudi conglomerate the Olayan Group, tops the businesswoman list.
  • Others on the list include Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, who chairs the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority, and Lobna Helal, the deputy governor of the Central Bank of Egypt.
  • The rankings were compiled by taking into account scope of the role or ministry, years of experience and company revenues, or GDP in the case of government.


Manudev wins National Masters snooker title

  • Karnataka's Manudev won the title in the first National Masters snooker tournament 2017.
  • He defeated Alok Kumar to win the title
  • Manudev, Alok Kumar, Chirag Ramakrishnan and Rafath Habib have qualified for the world 6 red and team championship snooker to be held in Egypt and also for the world snooker championship to be held in Malta later this year.

India’s Amit Saroha clinches silver in World Para Athletics Championships

  • Former national-level hockey player Amit Saroha clinched silver medal in the club throw event in the F-51 category --- below waist paraplegic category --- at the ongoing World Para Athletics Championships in London. The event is the equivalent of the hammer throw, only para athletes throw a wooden club.
  • Amit Saroha has been wheelchair-bound, after a horrific a road accident in 2007 left him crippled.

Neel Joshi, Ananya Dabke win Dutch Open

  • Mumbai youngsters Neel Joshi and Ananya Dabke bagged the under-15 boys and girls titles, respectively, in the Dutch Open Junior Squash Championships, in Amsterdam, Netherlands.
  • As per information received, top seed Joshi beat 5/8 seed Khalil Alhassan of England 9-11, 11-4, 11-5, 11-6 in the boys final, while Dabke, seeded down the order at 9/12, turned giant-killer with an exciting 11-7, 11-4, 12-10 win over second seed Serena Daniel of the USA in the girls championship round.

Bharat Arun appointed India bowling coach

  • The three-member committee formed by the Committee of Administrators (CoA) has decided to retain the services of Sanjay Bangar and fielding coach R Sridhar while appointing Bharat Arun as the bowling coach of the Indian senior men's team. 
  • In addition to serving as batting coach, Bangar will also serve as Ravi Shastri's deputy.
  • In addition to these appointments Patrick Farhart will continue as the physio of the team and Shankar Basu the trainer.

Indians win gold and bronze at first global robotics Olympiad

  • A group of seven Indian students has bagged two awards at the first global robotics Olympiad in the US where 157 countries participated.
  • The students, who hail from Mumbai, won gold for Zhang Heng Engineering Design Award and bronze for Global Challenge Match at the international robotics challenge organised by FIRST Global in Washington, according to a statement.
  • The Indian team was led by 15-year-old Rahesh, the youngest member of the group. Others were Aadiv Shah, team spokesperson; Harsh Bhatt, alliance strategist; Vatsin, alliance analyst; Adhyyan, robot tactician; Tejas, robot controller and Raghav, robot driver.

Banking & Finance

RBI has set up an Enforcement Department (EFD)

  • RBI has set up an Enforcement Department (EFD) which would serve as a centralised department to speed up regulatory compliance; EFD has been entrusted with the responsibility of enforcement action on commercial banks 
  • Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has informed that they have set up an Enforcement Department (EFD). EFD would serve as a centralised department to speed up regulatory compliance. EFD has been set up to separate those who oversee the possible rule breaches and those who decide on punitive actions so that enforcement process operates fairly and is evidence based. 
  • The EFD has become functional with effect from April 03, 2017. The EFD has been entrusted with the responsibility of enforcement action on commercial banks. 

Awards & Achievements

J&K bags best award in adventure tourism destination

  • The J&K Tourism Department has received the award in the category of 'Best Adventure Tourism Destination and Eco-Tourism Destination' at a 3-Day event organized by Indian International Travel Mart, Chennai Deputy Director Tourism (Publicity) Peerzada Zahoor who was representing the J&K State received the award. 
  • During the Travel Mart, J&K stall which was beautifully decorated attracted huge visitors mostly locals and travel agents.

Indian Oil bags WPC Excellence Award

  • Leading oil marketing company Indian Oil has bagged the WPC Excellence Award for its innovative and ground-breaking INDMAX technology at 22nd edition of the World Petroleum Congress in Istanbul. 
  • Sanjiv Singh, Chairman, IndianOil and SSV Ramakumar, Director (R&D) received the award from Abdullah bin Hamad Al Attiyah, former Deputy Prime Minister & Minister of Energy and Industry, Qatar. 
  • LPG as a clean and convenient cooking fuel, he added. Developed by Indian Oil’s R&D Centre, the INDMAX technology is highly suitable for heavy crude oil feeds contaminated with metals. 
  • In addition to the WPC Excellence award for INDMAX technology, Indian Oil also won the top honours for the unsurpassed scale of implementation of Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) it had spearheaded for distribution of deposit-free LPG connections to below-poverty-line families.

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