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Current Affairs Today – April 19 2016

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PM Modi inaugurates Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Narayana super-specialty hospital in Katra

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated a 230 bedded Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Narayana Super specialty Hospital in Katra in Jammu and Kashmir.

  • For the hospital operation the board has entered into an agreement with Narayana Hrudayalaya Ltd, Bangalore that operates 32 hospitals across the country.

Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi inaugurates Regional Conference of North Eastern States on Child Adoption

Ministry: Women & Child Development
Inaugurated by: Union Minister Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi
Venue: Shillong, Meghalaya

Highlights of steps towards Women

  • Mahila Police Volunteer schemes – prevent crimes against women
  • Alert button in Cell phones
  • Mahila E Haat- Digital marketing Market

Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi launched Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Scheme in additional 61 districts

  • In addition to the existing 100 districts of the country with low child sex ratio, now it is extended for additional 61 districts which was launched by Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi, Union Minister of women and Child Development.

India and Mauritius sign MoU to promote cooperation in the field of Traditional Medicine and Homoeopathy

Union Government inks Memorandum of Understanding with Mauritius for the following advantages

  • Traditional system of Medicine and Homeopathy
  • Exchange of Experts, Supply of traditional medicinal substances
  • Joint research and Development
  • Recognition of the traditional systems of health and Medicine

Main Theme: Promotion and Popularization; Venue: Mauritius

  • Signed between Minister of State for AYUSH (Independent Charge) and Health & Family Welfare Shri Shripad Yesso Naik and Mauritius Government.

Visit of Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of State (I/C) for Petroleum and Natural Gas to Bangladesh

Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan visited during his visit he petdiscussed all bilateral issues relating to hydrocarbon sector between the two countries.

  • New Delhi based Indian Oil Corporation has inked an MoU with Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation to scrutinize the possibility of jointly working on setting up a LPG (Liquefied petroleum gas) import terminal at Chittagong port and other downstream infrastructure in that country.
  • The minister’s discussions with his counterpart authorities focused on laying a Chittagong-Tripura pipeline through that country for supplying part of the imported LPG to India’s North East region and supplying diesel from Numaligarh Refinery to Parbatipur in Bangladesh.
  • Bangladesh is likewise signing up Indian engineering consultancy firm Engineers India Ltd as consultants for extension of the Eastern Refinery.

Maharashtra government bans digging of bore wells beyond 200 ft

The temperatures across Maharashtra has surfaced deep water crisis in many parts of the state with this the pace at which ground water level is declining, the state government has stepped up to contain the loss and decided to ban digging of bore wells beyond 200 feet.

  • The move was necessitated for severe drought and decreasing ground water level across various regions in the state. These efforts are being made to conserve ground water till monsoon.
  • Maharashtra has decided to restrict the digging of bore well and treat it as a punishable offence. Violators of the new rule would now face fine or imprisonment.

Drought hit Maharashtra:

  • The State Government has also approved Rs 750 crore scarcity fund of which Rs 500 crore have already been distributed for provided that measures to meet the drinking water requirements of the people.


Finance Minister Arun Jaitley visit to US

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on a 10-day itinerary to the US to attend the Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, a UN session on the drugs problem, and an interaction with American investors.

  • He was accompanied by Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan and Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian and some Indian Delegations.


  • FM Arun Jaitley addresses World Bank in Washington
  • Sixth Annual Ministerial Meeting of India- US Economic and Financial Partnership (EFP)
  • G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting
  • India joins G20 in fighting tax evasion, terror funding

Sushma Swaraj on 4-day visit to Iran, Moscow

External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj on a line of travel of two-nation (Moscow, Iran) visit, during which she will be present at the annual foreign ministers meeting of Russia, India and China.

Iran’s Visit:

The Foreign Minister’s Iran visit is aimed at stepping up commitment in a range of areas including oil and trade as the strategically important Persian Gulf nation is now ready to resume business as usual after lifting of sanctions under a historic nuclear deal.

Moscow’s Visit:

After Iran she will leave for a two-day trip to Moscow to attend the annual Foreign Ministers’ meeting of Russia, India and China. On the sidelines of event Swaraj is expected to meet her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi during which she is likely to raise the issue of China blocking India’s bid to ban Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar by the UN.

Global Leaders Launch First ever Investment Framework for Nutrition and Call for Immediate Action

Due to decline in the progress of Nutrition, World level leading researchers and Economists in Nutrition fields have initiated thorough researches on Nutrition and reiterate the Governments and Businesspersons to invest in Nutrition to accelerate progress for Nutrition.

Hosted By: The Investing in Nutrition: The Foundation for Development event by World Bank

  • 1,000 days is part of a global effort to accelerate the investment in Nutrition and particularly during the woman’s pregnancy and Child’s Second birthday

International Defence Expo opens in Malaysia

Around 1000 defencecompanies includingFrance major Airbus and UK based BAE Systems, Bell Helicopter, SAAB and Thales are also participating in the Defence Services Asia (DSA) exhibition in Malaysi

  • In the exhibition 1,200 companies from 60 countries to display static equipment of weapons and defence technology, weaponry systems and generic security solutions in the four-day exhibition.
  • 29 countries taking part in the exhibition in the form of group pavilion including Australian, China, Britain and the US.
  • This year’s DSA is expected to be the biggest one since its inauguration 28 years ago a series of security dialogues and forums on topics including
    1. Cyber Security,
    2. Humanitarian Assistance,
    3. Disaster Relief

Lanka to sign MoU with Japan, India for collaboration in Science & Technology

A Trilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed in Science and Technology among Sri Lanka, Japan and India.

  • On behalf of the MoU Sri Lanka’s University of Sri Jayewardenepura will sign the MoU with the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science (AIST) and Biomedical Research Institute (BMRI) of Japan and Department of Biotechnology (DBT) of Ministry of Science and Technology, India.
  • This MoU will result in the long-lasting academic collaborations of Prof. Ranil de Silva with Dr. Sunil Kaul, Chief Senior Research Scientist, AIST, which made the way towards the advancement in science and technology between Japan, India and Sri Lanka


Govt. relaxes norms for partial PF withdrawal

Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) members have three more months to withdraw the entire balance in their EPF accounts, until an employee attains the age of 58.

  • The Labour Ministry decided to keep the notification in abeyance till April 30. Its implementation has been again deferred tillJuly 31.
  • The restrictions will now apply from August 1 instead of May 1.

Labour Minister: Bandaru Dattatreya

RBL becomes first private sector bank to open dedicated branch for Startups

RBL Bank launches Bengaluru branch exclusively for startups. The dedicated branch will rblassist entrepreneurs in setting up new companies and offer banking services like foreign exchange, remittances and cash management. 
  • It will also provide a range of value added services including registration, legal and tax formalities through its affiliates and partners.
  • The Bank is following in the footsteps of India’s largest bank, SBI which started its InCube startup banking branch in Bengaluru a few months before.
Morgan Stanley downgrades Bank of Baroda and ICICI Bank
Morgan Stanley downgraded India’s biggest private sector bank ICICI as well as state-run Bank of Baroda, citing rising concerns about Non-Performing Assets(NPA).
  • These banks will have to provide more money to cover for NPAs in the current and next fiscal year.
  • ICICI Bank and Bank of Baroda were downgraded to “equal-weight”.Equal weight means investors should detest from accumulating these stocks, but may hold on to their existing investment.The target for ICICI Bank is Rs 240 per share, while that for Bank of Baroda is Rs 115 per share.
About Morgan Stanley:
Morgan Stanley is a Global financial services firm and a market leader in securities, asset management and credit services.
CEO: James P. Gorman ; Headquarters: New-York


Compat sets aside Rs 258-crore fine on Jet Airways, IndiGo, SpiceJet

In a relief for Jet Airways, IndiGo and SpiceJet, the Competition Appellate Tribunal(Compat) set aside Rs 258-crore penalty imposed on them and directed Competition Commission of India(CCI) to pass a fresh order.
  • Competition Commission of India (CCI) in November had penalised the carriers for alleged cartelisation in fixing fuel surcharge on air cargo.
  • Jet Airways was fined Rs 151.69 crore while the penalties on Inter Globe Aviation and Spice Jet were Rs 63.74 crore and Rs 42.48 crore, respectively.


Djokovic, Serena bag top honours at Laureus World Sports awards

Venue: Berlin, Germany
Version: 16th
Host: Hollywood Star Bill Murray


  • Serbia, Novak Djokovic won “Sportsman of the year” Trophy for the third continuous victory
  • United States, Serena Williams also bagged the Women’s top honour “Sportswoman of the year” for the third time.

 President of India presents Hindi Sevi Samman Awards

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee gave away the Hindi SeviSamman Awards for prezthe years 2012, 2013 and 2014 a function at RashtrapatiBhavan in New Delhi.

  • There are 42 awardees for three years. 14 scholars receive this award in seven different categories every year for their contribution in the field of Hindi language and literature.
  • Ge Fuping, who was given George Grierson prize for his remarkable works done for the propagation of Hindi in foreign. Besides him, Alka Dunputh (from Mauritius) and Shichiro Soma (from Japan) were also given the George Grierson award by the President.
  • Out of the 42 awardees for three years, three were not present during the function.

Hindi Sevi Samman Awards:

  • These Awards were established by Central Hindi Institute Agra in 1989.
  • The Hindi Sevi Samman under which awards are given in various categories was started by the Kendriya Hindi Sansthan of the HRD Ministry.


Tata Steel appoints new CEO, Bimlendra Jha for UK biz

Tata Steel had appointed Bimlendra Jha, executive committee member of Tata Steel’s Europe operations, as the chief executive officer (CEO) at Tata Steel UK.
  • He would report to Hans Fischer, CEO at Tata Steel Europe, and be supported by a team of executives drawn across functions including operations, procurement, finance, human resources and commercial.

PCB appoints Inzamam-ul-Haq as new chief selector

Former Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq appointed as the head of the new selection inzacommittee of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB)

Other Members: Tauseef Ahmed, Wasim Haider and Wajahatullah Wasti

  • Inzamam, who replaces former batsman Haroon Rasheed.
  • He was the Afghanistan cricket team coach for the past six months
Shri Deepak Mishra – Addl. DG, CRPF ; P.C.Thakur – DG, Fire Services 
Mr. Deepak Mishra, an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer of the 1984 batch (AGMU cadre), has been appointed as Additional Director General in the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF).
  • The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment of Shri P.C.Thakur as Director General of Fire Services.
Maharashtra Government to use hologram technique to check spurious liquor
The Maharashtra Government has decided to make it mandatory to have a hologram on every alcohol bottle manufactured and sold in the State.
  • It has decided to paste “polyester base track and trace” hologram, to be supported by a mobile app, which will help consumers find out whether the liquor is fake or genuine.
  • The technique will also help prevent loss of revenue due to cheap liquor being imported into the state from neighbouring States.


Three new primate species found in Madagascar

Scientists have identified three new species of mouse lemurs in the South and East of Madagascar and increase the number of known mouse lemur species to 24.

About the new primate species

  • One of the species was named Ganzhorn’s mouse lemur after Jorg Ganzhorn from Hamburg University.
  • The second species was named Microcebus manitatra, symbolising the expansion of the range of a subgroup from western Madagascar.
  • The third species Microcebus boraha, is named after its location on the Island of Sainte Marie in Malagasy Nosy Boraha.


FIH announces new structure of int’l hockey events from 2019

The International Hockey Federation pronounced a new annual tellurian (inhabiting the earth.) home and divided league to be implemented in 2019 linking a world’s heading hockey nations that may a reinstate Hockey World League Semi-Finals and Finals and a Champions Trophy.

Champions Trophy Scrapped:

  • FIH also motionless that Champions Trophy hold once in dual years given 1978 will be scrapped and a 2018 edition in Amsterdam will be a last one.
  • Hockey sidestake part in a new home and divided joining will be selected shaped on a clearly tangible set of gift criteria designed to say a peculiarity of a joining and high customary events.

India’s Durga Thakur Promoted as International Hockey Umpire

International Hockey Federation has promoted Durga Thakur of India as the international outdoor umpire after her good performance at the recently-culminated Hawke’s Bay Cup in Hastings New Zealand.FIH’s list currently has 14 Indians in the elite league of international umpires (10 men, 4 women).

Durga Thakur:

  • Thakur started her career as an umpire from the third Hockey India Sub-Junior Men & Women National Championship.
  • She is a graduate of NSNIS in 2011 her first international assignment came in 2015 at the double six-Nation Cup in Breda, Netherlands.
  • Thakur is an addition to a crop of young Indian umpires presently officiating at the international level.


‘Everybody Loves Raymond’ star Roberts dies

Emmy award-winning actress Doris Roberts has passed away. She was 90. 

Doris Roberts arrives at the Hollywood Film Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Sunday, Nov. 1, 2015, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)


  • Roberts was nominated for 11 Emmy awards, including seven for playing Marie Barone on “Raymond”, winning four for her work on that series.
  • She picked up her first Emmy in 1983 for a guest appearance on “St. Elsewhere“, making for a total of five wins overall.