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Lok Sabha passed protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Bill 2019
i. According to the bill, besides a Chief justice of India, a former Supreme Court judge can also be made the chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).
ii. The bill also proposes to enable any person to be the chairperson of the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) who has been a judge of a high court.
iii. The bill amends the protection of Human Rights Act 1993 to provide that a person who has been Chief Justice of India or a judge of the Supreme Court will be the chairperson of the NHRC.
i. The protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Bill 2019 provides two persons having knowledge of human right to be appointed as the members of the NHRC.
ii. It allows 3 members to be appointed of which at least one will be a woman.
iii. The bill reduces the office term of chairperson and members of the NHRC and SHRC to 3 years from the current 5years or till the age of 70 years, whichever is earlier.
National Human Rights Commission
i. The National Human Rights Commission of India is a statutory public body constituted under the protection of Human Rights Ordinance of 28 September 1993.
ii. It was formed in the year 12 October 1993 and has its headquarters in New Delhi.
iii. Global Alliance of National Human Rights institution (GANHRI) had earlier recorded A rating to National Human Rights Commission.
India’s First Smart School Campus in Pune to be launched by Singapore’s GIIS
The Singapore based Global Indian International School (GIIS) will launch the concept of SMART Campus at Hadapsar and Balewadi campuses in Pune, Maharashtra. It will be India’s first Smart campus which is a part of Singapore’s Rs 420 crore investments in education in India over the coming years.
i. It is aimed to provide students with NextGen learning to sharpen 21st-century skills.
ii. The Smart Campus will provide Digital and Virtual Classrooms for global student exchange, facial recognition for student attendance and campus security, innovation, artificial intelligence, robotics and entrepreneurship studios.
iii. Sports Analytics at the school level will be introduced for the first time in India which will monitor and improve on-field performances of students through data and statistical information- a technique used by international sports teams in basketball and soccer.
About GIIS Singapore:
♦ Founded: 2002
♦ Co-Founder & Chairman: Atul Temurnikar
♦ Slogan: Nurturing future Citizens
Lucknow to host Asia’s biggest arm show ‘DefExpo’ in February 2020
The defence ministry will hold its 11th biennial arms exhibition ‘DefExpo 2020’ in Lucknow, next year from February 5-8 in line with Modi government’s big push to develop Uttar Pradesh as one of the two major defence manufacturing hubs.i. It will focus on India’s emerging manufacturing corridors with special focus on digital transformation of the industry
ii. The theme of DefExpo will be “India: the emerging defence manufacturing hub’’
i. Defexpo is a land,naval systems and Homeland security exhibition which used to be held only in New Delhi until the Modi government decided to take it around the country.
ii. Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid Foundation stone for Rs 20000 crore Bundelkhand defence Industrial Corridor in Jhansi district of Uttar Pradesh in the month of February 2019.
iii. Despite India being the world’s biggest arms importer, the Defexpo exhibition will also act as a promoter of ‘MAKE IN INDIA’ to bring down arms imports.
iv. The previous edition took place in Tamilnadu.
Manufacturing units in Uttar Pradesh
i. Uttar Pradesh is also home for Central Government-run Defence manufacturing units like Hindustan Aeronautics Limited(HAL) assemblies in Lucknow, Kanpur, Korwa and Naini.
ii. It also has nine Ordnance Factory unit and Bharat Electronics Ltd facility at Ghaziabad.
13th Global Healthcare Summit organized by AAPI and GAPIO held in Hyderabad
Vice President of India, Shri Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated the 13th edition of the annual Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) organized by American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), with the lighting of the traditional lamp and delivering the keynote address at the Taj Krishna Hotel in Hyderabad.
i. The GHS is being organized by AAPI in concert with the British Association of physicians of Indian Origin(BAPIO) and the Global Association of physicians of Indian Origin(GAPIO) along with several alumni chapters of medical schools in India.
ii. During the Summit a medical quiz competition for medical students will be held, where winners will be given ₹5lakh, ₹3lakh and ₹1lakh as first,second and third prizes respectively.
iii. Dr. Sudhakar Jonnalagadda, AAPI vice president for 2018-2019, said that the 14th edition of GHS will be held in Visakhapatnam , Andhra Pradesh in 2020.
i. The American Association of physicians of Indian origin as a professional association for Indian American physicians
ii. As of 2019, claims a membership of 80000 physicians.
Indian Navy commissions fifth Dornier Aircraft Squadron in Chennai
On July 22, 2019, Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Karambir Singh commissioned the fifth Dornier squadron of the Indian Navy- Indian Naval Air Squadron 313 (INAS 313 ) at the Naval Air Enclave in Meenambakkam, Chennai, Tamil Nadu. It will operate the indigenous Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) built Maritime Surveillance version multi-role Dornier 228 Short Range Maritime reconnaissance aircraft from Chennai Airport.Key Points:
i. It is commanded by Commander Vivek Koman.
ii. It is fitted with state-of-the-art sensors and equipment which include Advanced Surveillance Radar, Electronic Sensors and networking features.
iii. It will help India to track the growing Chinese presence in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
About Indian Navy:
♦ Navy Day: 4th December
♦ Motto: Sham No Varunah (May the Lord of the water be auspicious unto us)
BANKING & FINANCE
India will be the first recipient of AIIB local currency funding
India will be the first recipient of local currency financing by the Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank (AIIB). The objective of local currency financing is to provide more options to borrowers. Key Points:
i. India is the second-largest shareholder of AIIB with a 7.5% stake. It has received about $2-billion funding for various projects so far.
ii. China holds 20.06% and Russia holds 5.92%.
♦ Headquarters: Beijing, China
♦ President: Jin Liqun
World Bank to continue the support to Andhra Pradesh with over $1 Billion programme
On July 21, 2019, The World Bank (WB) reaffirmed the support to the state of Andhra Pradesh with over $1 billion programs. It covers the health, agriculture, energy and disaster management sectors.
i. A new $328 million support to the health sector was signed by the World Bank with the Government of Andhra Pradesh.
ii. Background: The Government of India (GoI) had withdrawn its request to the World Bank for financing the proposed Amaravati Sustainable Infrastructure and Institutional Development Project on July 15, 2019.
Standard Chartered is all set to be the first foreign bank to initiate operations at GIFT IFSC
UK- based Standard Chartered will be the first foreign bank to launch operations at International Financial Service Centre (IFSC).i. The bank has received in-principle regulatory approvals to set up its IFSC Banking Unit (IBU) in Gujarat International Finance Tec-city (GIFT city).
ii. Tapan Ray, MD & CEO of GIFT City said that with the presence of Standard Chartered, the IFSC ecosystem will be formidable.
i. Gift city was one of the dream projects of Shri. Narendra Modi when he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat.
ii. It has been set up by the Gujarat government in joint partnership with Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services (IL&FS).
iii. The recent budget has laid special emphasis on aircraft financing and leasing which would make GIFT City, help build a hub for aircraft financing and leasing with the help of Standard Chartered and other organizations in the future.
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
Two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank to receive Leopard Club Award at 2019 Locarno International Film Festival
Hilary Swank, a two-time Oscar winner, will be conferred with the Leopard Club Award at the 2019 Locarno International Film Festival which will be held from August 7- 17, 2019. It will be the 72nd edition of the film festival in Locarno, Switzerland.Key Points:
i. It is given to a “great personality of the cinema who through her or his work has managed to mark the collective imagination”.
ii. The film festival will screen the films of Hilary Swank- “Boys Don’t Cry” (1999) and “Million Dollar Baby” (2004) for which she had won Best Actress Academy Awards.
iii. Previous recipients of the Leopard Club Award are Meg Ryan, Adrien Brody, Stefania Sandrelli, Andy Garcia, Mia Farrow and Faye Dunaway.
Carnatic vocalist S. Sowmya selected for Sangita Kalanidhi Award 2019
On July 21, 20419, The Music Academy’s Executive Committee unanimously selected Carnatic vocalist S. Sowmya for Sangita Kalanidhi Award 2019. She will preside over the 93rd annual conference of The Music Academy which is scheduled to be held from December 15, 2019 to January 1, 2020.Key Points:
i. Seetha Narayanan, a veteran vocalist and M S Sheela, who has been a torch-bearer of Carnatic music in Karnataka, were selected for the Sangita Kala Acharya award.
ii. Nagaswaram artist ‘Vyasarpadi’ Kothandaraman and vocalist Rajkumar Bharathi, great grandson of national poet Subramani Bharath, were selected for the TTK Award in memory of T T Krishnamachari.
iii. Arati N Rao, an assistant professor in Bengaluru-based Jain University, was chosen for the Musicologist Award.
iv. The Nritya Kalanidhi title will be conferred to Bharatanatyam dancer Priyadarshini Govind.
v. The Sangita Kalanidhi and other music awards will be conferred at the Sadas of the Music festival on January 1, 2020.
vi. The Nritya Kalanidhi award will be conferred at the inaugural of the dance festival scheduled which will be held on January 3, 2020.
IMFA’s SMC & MMC received top honours at the 21st MEMC Week
At the 21st Mines Environment & Mineral Conservation (MEMC) week held in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, 2 mines of the Indian Metals & Ferro Alloys (IMFA) received the top honours. The event was organised under the aegis of Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM). The objective of the annual event was to create awareness towards conserving mineral resources and protecting the environment in and around the mines.
i. Sukinda Mines Chromite (SMC) was conferred the first prize for Systematic and Scientific Mining and the third prize in the Publicity and Propaganda category.
ii. Mahagiri Mines Chromite (MMC) was given the first prize under the category of Underground Mining and Overall Performance, among 78 mines.
iii. The Best ‘Paryavaran Bandhu’ Award was given to Sudhanshu Patni, Deputy Head, Mining Business Unit.
Zappfresh wins ‘Best Farm to Fork Fresh Meat Brand’ at the 6th edition of ‘CMO Asia National Awards for Marketing Excellence’
India’s first fully-integrated Fresh Meat brand, Zappfresh was conferred with the ‘Best Farm to Fork Fresh Meat Brand’ accolade at the 6th edition of ‘CMO Asia National Awards for Marketing Excellence’ which were held at Taj Lands End, Mumbai, Maharashtra on July 4, 2019.
i. It was awarded for its innovative solutions in transforming the meat buying experience of consumers through its farm-to-fork model and for disrupting the fresh meat brand market in the country.
ii. Zappfresh is currently present across 8 cities- Delhi, Gurugram, Noida, Faridabad, Ghaziabad, Chandigarh, Mohali, and Panchkula.
♦ Co-founder & CEO: Deepanshu Manchanda
World Reputation Rankings 2019: Top 3 Best Institutes in India are IISc Bengaluru, IIT Madras and MAHE
In the World Reputation Rankings 2019 released by the Times Higher Education, among the Indian Institutes, Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bengaluru, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras and Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE), Manipal were awarded the top 3 positions.
i. The 2019 rankings are based on a survey carried out between November 2018 and February 2019. It received a total of 11,554 responses from 135 countries.
ii. It ranked institutions for their reputation in research and teaching.
iii. MAHE was ranked 419 from 704 of 2018 rankings. It topped the list among the private institutions in India with 414 rank in Teaching and 458 in Research.
♦ Location: Manipal, Udupi, Karnataka
♦ Motto: Inspired by Life
♦ Chancellor: Ramdas Madhav Pai
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Ursula von der Leyen was elected as the first female President of European Commission
European Parliament elected Ursula von der Leyen as the President of the next European Commission. She will succeed Jean-Claude Juncker.Key Points:
i. She is set to take office on 1 November 2019 for a five-year term.
ii. Out of 733 votes casted, 383 members voted in favour of her.
iii. Earlier, She served in the federal government of Germany from 2005 to 2019 as the longest-serving member of Angela Merkel’s cabinet. She is a member of the centre-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU).
First President – Walter Hallstein
Kalraj Mishra sworn in as the new Governor of Himachal Pradesh
On July 22, 2019, Former Union Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises & a veteran Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Kalraj Mishra, aged 78, was sworn in as the 26th governor of Himachal Pradesh replacing Acharya Devvrat, who has been transferred and appointed as the Governor of Gujarat. The oath-taking ceremony was held at Raj Bhawan, Shimla.Key Points:
i. He had resigned as the Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in 2017 after he crossed the age of 75 beyond which BJP leaders are barred from occupying official posts and cannot contest elections.
ii. He was elected as a Member of Parliament (MP) in 2014 Lok Sabha elections from Deoria in Uttar Pradesh.
About Himachal Pradesh:
♦ Capital: Shimla
♦ Chief Minister: Jai Ram Thakur
♦ National Parks: Great Himalayan National Park, Pin Valley National Park, Inderkilla National Park, Khirganga National Park, Simbalbara National Park
♦ Wildlife Sanctuaries: Bandli WLS, Churdhar WLS, Daranghati WLS, Gamgul Siyabehi WLS, Kais WLS, Kugti WLS, Lippa Asrang WLS, Majathal WLS, Pong Dam Lake WLS, Sainj WLS, Tirthan WLS etc
Acharya Devvrat sworn in as governor of Gujarat
On 22nd July 2019, Indian politician Acharya Dev Vrat (60) sworn in as the 20th governor of Gujarat. He took the oath in Sanskrit. He succeeded Om Prakash Kohli.KeyPoints:
i. He has been associated with arya samaj pracharak and served previously as the principal of a Gurukul in Kurukshetra, Haryana.
ii. He served as the 18th Governor of Himachal Pradesh till 21st July,2019.
iii. He is also the Chancellor of state universities of Himachal Pradesh and has over 30 years of experience in academics and administration.
iv. He has been working for a pollution free environment. He has been closely associated with campaigns against female foeticide and the “Beti Padhao-Beti Bacahao” campaign.
His oath taking ceremony was attended by Outgoing governor OP Kohli, chief minister Vijay Rupani, deputy chief minister Nitin Patel, state assembly speaker Rajendra Trivedi, several cabinet ministers, MLAs and senior officers were present at the function.
Capital – Gandhinagar
Chief Minister – Vijay Rupani
State Animal – Asiatic lion
State Bird – Greater flamingo
State Flower – Marigold (galgota)
State Fruit – Mango
State Tree – Banyan
Sarvita Sethi appointed as VP for M&A for Coca-Cola India & SW Asia; Harsh Bhutani as CFO
Coca-Cola India appointed Sarvita Sethi as the Vice-President (VP) for Merger and Acquisitions (M&A) and new ventures for Coke’s India and Southwest Asia region with effect from August 1, 2019. She will be responsible for any new acquisition. She is a chartered accountant with more than 15 years of experience in corporate finance. She had worked for Sainsbury’s and Viacom in London before joining Coca-Cola in 2008.Harsh Bhutani
Harsh Bhutani was appointed as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) with effect from August 1, 2019. He will succeed Sarvita Sethi. He was the CFO of Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages (HCCB) since April 2016. He worked with Swiss industrial products and solutions conglomerate- Asea Brown Boveri, before joining HCCB in 1999.
About Coca-Cola Company:
♦ Headquarters: Atlanta, Georgia, US
♦ Founded: January 29, 1892
Varun Dhawan was signed as the brand face of Reebok
Varun Dhawan was appointed as the Indian Brand Ambassador of leading fitness brand Reebok. Earlier, Katrina Kaif was appointed as the new face of Reebok. Reebok also launched its biggest campaign on Sole Fury, a dynamic new silhouette that is equal parts sport and style.
Bengali actor Prosenjit Chatterjee named as the Brand Ambassador for RummyCircle
Bengali actor Prosenjit Chatterjee was named as the Brand Ambassador for RummyCircle. It is India’s largest online rummy platform which is an initiative of Play Games 24×7 Pvt. Ltd. The brand also launched its new marketing campaign #BhorpurManoranjan, which gives a completely new fan experience to its players.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Chandrayaan-2 launched successfully from SDSC, Sriharikota, AP
On July 22, 2019, India’s heaviest rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) Mk-III, nicknamed ‘Bahubali’ carried the Chandrayaan-2 mission successfully from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) in Sriharikota, off the coast of Andhra Pradesh. It is an Rs 978-crore project. It will be the first operational flight of GSLV-Mk-3 which is a 640-tonne rocket.
i. Mission: The Chandrayaan 2 mission is set to explore the south polar region of the Moon, which is also known as Dark Side of the Moon due to the absence of sunlight in and around the craters of the Lunar Polar surface. It will explore the uncharted lunar south pole, 11 years after Isro’s successful first lunar mission, Chandrayaan-1, which made more than 3,400 orbits around the moon and was operational for 312 days till August 29, 2009………………………..Click here to Read more
Amazon launched ‘JEE Ready’ app
Amazon, an e-commerce and tech giant, launched an Indian Institute of Technology Joint Entrance Examination (IIT-JEE) preparation app called JEE Ready. It is Amazon’s first product in the edtech sector in India.Key Points:
i. It helps the students to prepare for entrance tests by allowing them to take an All India Mock Test for free.
ii. It is currently in its beta phase and is available only on Android devices.
♦ Founded: July 5, 1994
♦ Founder: Jeff Bezos
♦ Headquarters: Seattle, Washington, U.S
IUCN adds more than 7000 species to red list; nearly 30,000 species are facing the risk of extinction
Scientist working for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has put a number, that over 28,000 species worldwide are facing the risk of extinction in the wild. They have also added more than 7000 species from around the planet to the red list.
i. The researchers, in a new assessment for its “Red List of Threatened Species” have found that more than a quarter of species examined falls into a category that indicates they are at grave risk of going extinct.
ii. There are several iconic species among those critically endangered, including mountain Gorilla, Malayan tigers, Sumatran Rhinos, pangolins and Vaquitas.
IUCN Red list
i. The IUCN lists available information on the species through several criteria.
ii. There are some types of questions which determines the speed of decline of the species in recent times, how widely it is distributed, how many mature individuals are still left etc.
iii. Then the species is put into one of Red List categories from least concern to extinct on the basis of risk of extinction.
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India’s track and field legend PT Usha nominated for IAAF’s ‘Veteran Pin’
The International Association of Athletics Federation’s (IAAF) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Jon Ridgeon informed that India’s track and field legend PT Usha, aged 55, has been nominated for the IAAF’s ‘Veteran Pin’ for her outstanding service to the sport. Key Points:
i. She is called as the “queen of track and field”.
ii. She has been invited to participate in the award ceremony which will be held during the opening ceremony of the 52nd IAAF Congress at the Qatar National Convention Centre in Doha on the eve of September 24, 2019.
iii. She had won five gold medals in 100m, 200m, 400m, 400m hurdles, and the 4x400m relay and a bronze medal in the 1985 Asian Athletic Championships which were held in Jakarta, Indonesia.
iv. In the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, she became the first Indian to reach the finals of the 400m hurdles, but lost the bronze by one-hundredth of a second.
♦ Formation: July 17, 1912
♦ Headquarters: Monaco
Hima Das & Muhammad Anas win gold in the 400m race held in Prague, Czech Republic
On July 20, 2019, Hima Das won her fifth gold of the month after she won the 400m race in Prague, Czech Republic. She completed the race in 52.09 seconds and it was the season’s best timing. Her personal best timing is of 50.79 seconds which she had recorded at the Asian Games, 2018.i. In Men’s category, Muhammad Anas won the gold medal by completing the 400 m race in 45.40 seconds.
USA grabbed the top spot in FIFA women’s rankings
The US has consolidated its top spot in the latest women’s rankings, after winning their second consecutive FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) Women’s World Cup.
i. The US is followed by Germany and the Netherlands in the second and third places respectively.
Founded: 21 may 1904
Motto: For the game. For the world.
Peter McNamara, former Australian Tennis Star passed away in Germany
Former Australian tennis star, Peter McNamara aged 64 passed away in Germany due to cancer. He was born in Melbourne, Australia. He retired in 1987 & started coaching. He coached Mark Philippoussis, guided Grigor Dimitrov in his formative years and more recently Matt Ebden and Wang Qiang.
i. He reached a career-high No 7 in the world in 1983, beat all-time greats Jimmy Connors and Ivan Lendl to win two of his five singles titles.
ii. His highest rank in doubles was 3.
He partnered with fellow Aussie Paul McNamee has won the 1980 and 1982 men’s doubles championship at Wimbledon and the Australian Open doubles in 1979.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Yukiya Amano passed away
On 22nd July 2019, 5th Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Yukiya Amano aged 72 passed away due to illness. He was born in Yugawara, Japan.i. He was serving as the head of International Atomic Energy Agency from 2009 to till date.
ii. Earlier, he served as an international civil servant for the United Nations and its subdivisions.
iii. In 2005, he served as the ambassador from Japan to the IAEA. From September 2005 to September 2006, he served as the Chairman of the IAEA Board of Governors.
Book he authored:
i. “A Japanese View on Nuclear Disarmament”, The Non-Proliferation Review, 2002
ii. “The Significance of the NPT Extension”, Future Restraints on Arms Proliferation, 1996 iii“La Non-Prolifération Nucléaire en Extrême-Orient”, Proliferation et Non-Proliferation Nucleaire, 1995
iii. “Sea Dumping of Liquid Radioactive Waste by Russia”, Gaiko Jiho, 1994
BOOKS & AUTHORS
Book ‘Who Stole My Job’ authored by Sunil Mishra get into the second print run
India’s leading publishing house Srishti publishers and distributors announced the second print of ‘Who Stole My Job’ by nationally acclaimed author Sunil Mishra.i. The book was first released in April 2019 and has received a very positive response from readers across the globe.
About the book
“Who Stole My Job” is a work of business fiction that relates to new technological disruptions in the age of Artificial Intelligence and their impact on daily and work lives.
Haryana cabinet permitted to set up Sports University at Rai
On July 16, 2019, The Cabinet of Haryana under the chairmanship of chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar approved the setting up of Haryana Sports University at Rai, Sonepat which will be the third sports university established by a state government in India after Swarnim Gujarat Sports University (Gandhinagar) and Tamil Nadu Physical Education and Sports University (Chennai).
i. It will have powers to conduct academic and training programs in physical education and sports sciences including sports technology, sports medicine, sports management, sports infrastructure engineering, sports psychology, sports nutrition, sports journalism, and sports marketing.
ii. The cabinet also approved the amendment in the Haryana Development and Regulation of Urban Areas Rules, 1976.
iii. It approved the draft of the Haryana Laws (Special Provisions) Bill, 2019 to make special provisions for all districts of Haryana falling under the National Capital Region (NCR) for a period of one year.
iv. A policy to empower the youth to achieve their potential and facilitate the all-round development of society was also announced by the government.
♦ Capital: Chandigarh
♦ Governor: Satyadev Narayan Arya
♦ National Parks: Kalesar National Park, Sultanpur National Park
♦ Wildlife Sanctuaries: Abubshehar WLS, Bhindawas WLS, Bir Shikargarh WLS, Chhilchila WLS, Kalesar WLS, Khaparwas WLS
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