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Current Affairs Today – August 16 2016

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CAT Aug 15 2016


Odia becomes the Official Language of the Odisha Government from today
i. On a final breath, Odia will be used as the official language in all transactions of the Odisha government from August 16, 2016.
ii. According to the amendment of the Orissa Official Language Act 1954, all government letters, files will be carried in Odia language.
iii. A committee with the Chief Secretary as its chairperson has been formed to oversee implementation of the use of Odia in all official business of the state government. The committee will every six months take stock of the situation. A special division under the General Administration department will oversee implementation of the use of Odia language in official transactions of the state government.
iv. On the other hand, linguists have expressed doubts over the implementation of Odia as the state’s official language. They have alleged that it was being implemented in haste.
v. It is noted that the Orissa Official Language Act, 1954 is the Orissa Act 14 of 1954 which received the assent of Governor on 1 October 1954 and was published in the Orissa Gazette on 15 October 1954

Maharashtra renovated and re launched girl child development scheme as Majhi Kanya Bhagyashri
Majhi Kanya Bhagyashrii. Maharashtra government re launched its “Majhi Kanya Bhagyashri” scheme in order to achieve its objective of improving the skewed girl child ratio in the state.
ii. This scheme is broadly divided into two parts.
1.The couple has gone for family planning operation after the birth of the first girl child; and
2.The couples have opted for the family planning operation after the birth of the second girl child.
However, the scheme shall not apply for couples having one boy and one girl.
iii. This re launched move is an amalgamation of “Sukanya” scheme and the Centre’s “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao” scheme introduced last year. State government has focused its attention on the scheme and plans to implement it on a mission mode across the state, for which it has enlisted support of her cabinet colleagues and guardian ministers.
iv. It is also noted that the government intends to take the scheme to the village level through massive public awareness programme.
About Maharashtra :
♦ Capital – Mumbai,
♦ CM – Devendra Fadnavis
♦ Governor – Chennamaneni Vidyasagar Rao

Bihar Government ratifies GST bill following Assam
i. The renewed relationship between Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar and the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) was evident once again, when the Bihar assembly ratified the Constitution amendment bill needed to roll out the proposed goods and services tax (GST).
ii. The GST Bill, seen as single biggest tax reform after Independence, needs to be ratified by at least 15 state legislatures out of a total of 29 before the President notify GST Council which will decide new tax rate and other issues.
iii. Bihar ratified a constitutional amendment Bill to introduce the Goods and Services tax in a special session of the state Assembly, making it the second state — the first non-NDA state — to do so after Assam.
iv. It is noted that The Bihar Chief Minister was against capping on the rate of GST, it should be the concern of both the Centre and the states to keep the tax rate at a reasonable level to prevent it from having an inflationary effect.


India sparks in the GII ranking among the Central and South Asian Nations
According to the rankings released by Cornell University, INSEAD and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), India climbed 15 spots, from 81 last year, to 66 in the Global Innovation Index (GII) and maintained the top spot in the Central and South Asia regions.
GII 2016 Theme: “Winning with Global Innovation”
Top 3 Countries : Switzerland, Sweden and The UK
i. India, 66th is the top-ranked economy in Central and Southern Asia.
ii. India was at ranked on 33 positions from 72 positions, which was tapped by domestic market scale – a new addition to the section. Interestingly, the domestic market scale ranked 3rd on the poll. However, the ease of protecting minority interest was at 8th position from the 7th position of the previous year’s data.
iii. It is noted that Among the GII 2016 leaders, four economies — Japan, the U.S., the UK, and Germany— stand out in “innovation quality,” a top-level indicator that looks at the caliber of universities, number of scientific publications and international patent filings. China moves to 17thplace in innovation quality, making it the leader among middle-income economies for this indicator.


Asia Index launches index to track performance of CBLO rate
Asia Indexi. A joint-venture between S&P Dow Jones Indices and BSE, Asia Index launched a new index to measure the performance of Collateralized Borrowing and Lending Obligation (CBLO) rate – one of most liquid rates in India.
ii. This new index would be calculated using the CBLO rate for transactions maturing on the following business day and with settlement T+0.
iii. The launch of S&P BSE Liquid Rate Index, It helps in expanding fixed income indices offering in the most actively traded instrument in the money market. The CBLO rate is considered one of most liquid rates in India, in the overnight segment.
iv. The index is designed to measure the returns from a daily rolling deposit at the CBLO rate.
v. It is noted that As the Indian fixed income market is maturing, investors are seeking a tool to measure the performance of CBLO rates over a period of time.

RBI imposes penalty on four cooperative banks
i. Mumbai based Reserve Bank of India(RBI) has imposed penalties on four cooperative banks for violation of various norms. This 4 cooperative banks are 
1.Cooperative City Bank, Guwahati – Rs 5 lakh
2.Indapur Urban Cooperative Bank, Indapur – Rs 2 lakh
3.Shri Dadasaheb Gajmal Cooperative Bank, Pachora – Rs 1 lakh
4.Model Cooperative Urban Bank, Hyderabad – Rs 1 lakh
ii. RBI also modified its directions regarding Mumbai based R.S. Co-op. Bank and relaxed payment terms for deposits.
♦ A sum not exceeding Rs 10,000 in every savings bank or current account or term deposit account or any other deposit account may be allowed to be withdrawn by depositor
♦ Established in 1935
♦ First Indian RBI Governor: C. D. Deshmukh


Tata Power Solar Commissions 100 Mw Project In Andhra
i. The 100 MW project was commissioned using domestically manufactured cells and modules, thus fitting in with the government’s ‘Make in India’ mission, and makes a huge addition to Tata Power Solar’s PV portfolio in India.
ii. It is ntoed that this is the biggest solar project commissioned using domestically manufactured solar cells and modules. The plant is expected to generate nearly 160 million units of energy per year and help offset approximately 110,000 tonnes of CO2 in the first year.
iii. Tata Power Solar, one of India’s largest integrated solar companies, is proud to be completing utility-scale solar projects using domestic content in India’s thriving solar market. This 100 MW plant is the largest to date and was completed well ahead of schedule, making it a stand out project in India.
iv. Tata Power Solar delivered the project in record 80% of stipulated timelines, and nearly 3 months ahead of schedule. Key highlights of the project were the innovative design of Balance-of-System (BoS) and cabling, along with optimized selection of evacuation systems.
v. This extensive plant is built over a 500 acres, the land contained natural streams and hillocks which were untouched by the plant to maintain the natural ecosystem. Tata Power Solar delivered the plant with a robust safety management system and 1.3 million safe man hours put in. Apart from a highly experienced team at Tata Power Solar, more than 50 local people were provided employment at the site.
vi. Tata’s impressive plant was commissioned for NTPC in Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh, with a rich ecosystem at the site, the company was careful not to disturb any of the natural environment while completing the installation and made using domestically manufactured cells and modules, it fits in with the ‘Make in India’ initiative that the government is promoting.

L&T gets Maharashtra gov contract to convert Nagpur into smart city
i. Larsen & Toubro to be the implementation partner to make Nagpur as Smart city. It is the country’s first large-scale integrated smart city.
ii. L&T’s business unit  ‘Smart World and Communication‘ will execute the project that entails laying of 1200 km of optical fiber network.
iii. The Company will set up 136 wifi hotspots across the city and will establish 100 digital interactive kiosks and developing city surveillance systems.
iv. The city has identified a strip of approximately 6 kilo meters which will be created as ‘Smart Strip’ with state-of-art systems powered by smart ICT interventions like smart transport, solid waste management.mart strip’ will be a new and exciting concept initiated for the first time in India.”
Nagpur :
♦ It is the third largest city in Maharashtra.
♦ Nagzira Wildlife Sanctuary, Sitabuldi Fort are located in Nagpur


Motor Giant Tata AutoComp to acquire TitanX
i. The Pune-based Tata AutoComp Systems, the Tata group-promoted auto component firm, is set to acquire TitanX, a global engine-cooling solutions firm that caters to commercial vehicle manufacturers.
ii. TitanX is a leading engine and powertrain cooling solutions supplier to the commercial vehicle industry having plants across North America, South America, Europe and China with sales of approximately USD 200 million. TitanX is currently owned by EQT Opportunity and Fouriertransform.
Motor Giant Tata AutoComp to acquire TitanXiii. Tata AutoComp did not disclose the value of the transaction and the financial Chronicle that the acquisition value would be announced only after all regulatory clearances were in place.
iv. Tata AutoComp offers its customers in India and China a wide portfolio of products and services through its own capabilities and joint ventures with global majors. In India, we have a very successful partnership with TRAD, which has state of the art engine cooling solutions for the passenger vehicle segment.
v. It is noted that TitanX has the latest technology in engine cooling solutions for commercial vehicles, which will help enhance our offering to our customers in commercial vehicle segment outside India. Given the challenges the auto-industry faces in emission control, this acquisition is a crucial part of our strategy of expanding globally and fortifying our presence in the cooling and emission control segments


First Ever Quantum Satellite launched by china to establish “HACK PROOF” Communications
China launched the world’s first quantum satellite, which will help it establish “hack-proof” communications between space and the ground, which is the latest advance in an ambitious space programme.
China’s Quantum Satellite :-
i. The Quantum Experiments at Space Scale, or QUESS, satellite was launched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in the remote northwestern province of Gansu.
ii. In its two-year mission, QUESS is designed to establish ‘hack-proof’ quantum communications by transmitting untraceable keys from space to the ground.
iii. Quantum communication boasts ultra-high security as a quantum photon can neither be separated nor duplicated and It is hence impossible to wiretap, intercept or crack the information transmitted through it.
iv. The satellite will enable secure communications between Beijing and Urumqi and the newly-launched satellite marks a transition in China’s role from a follower in classic information technology development to one of the leaders guiding future achievements.

Google Unveils its Video Chatting App – Dubbed Duo for Andriod and iOS users
Googlei. Google’s video chatting appdubbed Duo, represents Google’s response to other popular video calling options, including Apple’s FaceTime, Microsoft’s Skype and Facebook’s Messenger app.
ii. Duo was announcedat Google I/O in May and rolled out globally onAndroid and iOS 9 in 78 languages. It will be a hard sell considering how late to market Duo is compared to strong, sensibly intertwined products like Facebook Messenger and Apple’s iMessage/FaceTime.
iii. It is a one-to-one video chat app and Google’s direct rival to Apple’s FaceTime (which is built into all iPhones, iPads and Macs), rather than a more comprehensive video conferencing solution such as Microsoft’s Skype or Google’s Hangouts.
iv. Duo seamlessly switches between mobile broadband and Wi-Fi without dropping the call, provides the so-called Knock Knock live feed of the caller before the recipient picks up as the phone rings and has a one-tap call button to jump straight into a video call.
v. The app, which is only available for smartphones, is the latest in a long line of Googleservices capable of conducting video calling, but is this time designed to simplify the process.

Yet another milestone in Research – US researchers found a Mechanism to recycle CO2 in to reusable Fuel
i. The US researchers used a metal compound called tungsten diselenide, which was fashioned into nanosized flakes to maximize the surface area and to expose its reactive edges.
ii. This mechanism was developed by US Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory and University of Illinois at Chicago
To make carbon dioxide into something that could be a usable fuel, Curtiss and his colleagues from University of Illinois at Chicago needed to find a catalyst – a particular compound that could make carbon dioxide react more readily.
iv. When converting carbon dioxide from the atmosphere into a sugar, plants use an organic catalyst called an enzyme. The researchers used a metal compound called tungsten diselenide, which they fashioned into nano-sized flakes to maximize the surface area and to expose its reactive edges and ultimately create carbon monoxide.
v. In natural photosynthesis process plants use an organic catalyst called an enzyme to convert CO2 from the atmosphere into a sugar. In this case, green plants need energy from light, water and CO2 from atmosphere in order to make their fuel. The obtained CO which is also a greenhouse gas can be converted into usable fuel, such as methanol.


Noted Educationalist B P Kesri Passed away in Jharkhand
i. Renowned educationist Prof B P Kesri of Jharkhand state has passed away in Ranchi district in his age of 80’s.
ii. Besides being an educationist, Hw was considered as the plight of Jharkhand, Chief Minister Raghubar Das mourned in his condolence message.
iii. The state CM also mourned the martyrdom of Commandant Prabhat Kumar, who hailed from Jharkhands Jamtara, in Jammu and Kashmir. His sacrifice would not go in vain.
About Jharkhand :
♦ Capital – Ranchi,
♦ CM – Raghubar Das,
♦ Governor – Draupadi Murmu

Renowned Malayalam Scriptwriter T A Razzaq Passed Away
i. Malayalam scriptwriter T A Razzaq, 58 passed away at Kochi while undergoing treatment for liver ailment at a private hospital in Kochi on August 16.
ii. Razzaq’s film career began in the late 1980s, when he started work as an assistant director on the film Dhwani. As a scriptwriter his notable films include Kanakinavu, Ghazal, Perumazhakalam, Aayirathil Oruvan and Thalolam. Kanakinavu went on to win a National Award.
Renowned Malayalam Scriptwriter T A Razzaq iii. Later Razzaq made his mark while contributing to areas including script, story, and dialogue for nearly 30 Malayalam movies. He is a recipient of the Kerala State Film Award for best story thrice -Kanakkinavu (1996), Aayirathil Oruvan (2002) and Perumazhakalam (2004) – and best screenplay for Kanakkinavu.
iv. It is noted that Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan condoled his demise and his demise is a big loss for Malayalam film industry.

First Speaker of Delhi Assembly Charti Lal Goel passes away
i. Former speaker of the Delhi Assembly Charti Lal Goel passed away. He was 89.
ii. He was the father of Delhi Sports Minister Vijay Goel.
iii. He was the first speaker of Delhi assembly. He was a founder member of the Bharatiya Jan Sangh in 1951
New Delhi :
Delhi is the capital territory of India