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Navika Sagar Parikrama : Indian Navy’s all women team to circumnavigate globe
Under project Navika Sagar Parikrama which will commence in September 2017, a team of women officers of the Indian Navy would circumnavigate the globe on an Indian-built sail boat INSV Tarini. This is the first ever Indian circumnavigation of the globe by an all-women crew.
About Navika Sagar Parikrama:
- The all-women crew includes Lt Cdr Vartika Joshi, Lt Cdr Pratibha Jamwal, Lt Cdr Swathi P, Lt Aishwarya Boddapati, Lt Sh Vijaya Devi and Lt Payal Gupta.
- Crew have trained extensively for the forthcoming voyage. They have sailed approximately 20,000 Nautical Miles (Nm) onboard INSV Mhadei and Tarini as part of training, which includes two expeditions to Mauritius (in 2016 and 2017) and a voyage from Goa to Cape Town in Dec 16….Click here to view more detail
SDMC launches ‘Mosquito Terminator Train’
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), in a joint initiative with the Northern Railway, launched the ‘mosquito terminator train’ at the New Delhi Railway station on 18th of Aug 2017.
i.The train will spray insecticide or bactericide on water bodies along the tracks across the city.
ii.It is expected to cover a distance of 70 kilometres a day.
iii.The truck contains a mixture of 8,000 litres of water and 200kg larvicide.
iv.The train runs at a speed of 20 km/hour to ensure that water bodies are sanitized effectively.
v.This is an annual exercise carried out to curb mosquito breeding in localities near railway tracks, which are inaccessible by road.
vi.Theauthorities have planned eight trips of terminator trains between 18th August and 16th September.
vii.Thespecial train covered south Delhi areas such as HazratNizamuddin, Lajpat Nagar, Patel Nagar, Delhi Kishanganj and Sadar Bazar.
viii.The train will cover areas in Sadar Bazar, SaraiRohilla, Patel Nagar, Delhi Cantonment, Palam and Gurgaon on 19th August.
ix.In the subsequent days, the terminator train will pass through localities of north and east Delhi municipal corporations.
x.A truck-mounted power sprayer is being provided by the municipal corporation for sanitising water bodies located within 50-60 metres of the track.
Power Grid Corporation inks $500 million loan pact with ADB
State-run power transmission utility Power Grid Corp announced that it will get a loan of USD 500 million from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for its various projects.
i.Power Grid has entered into a loan agreement with ADB on 17th August 2017.
ii.According to the statement, the proceeds of the loan are proposed to be utilised for funding of:
- Green Energy Corridor
- 800KV High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC)
- Bipole link between Western Region (Raigarh, Chhattisgarh) and Southern Region (Pugalur, Tamil Nadu)
- 320 KV HDVC link between Pugalur and North Trichur (Kerala)
Formation:24 November 1966.
Headquarters:Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines
SmritiI rani inaugurates handicraft manufacturing unit in Jharkhand
SmritiI rani has inaugurated Jharkhand’s first textiles manufacturing and export unit‘Orient Craft Ltd’.
i.Currently, Jharkhand produces an annual production of nearly 1,200 metric tonnes of tasar silk alone and shares 62% share in the total market production of the entire country.
ii.The unit has come up in record time of 4 month with all the modern machines.
iii.Irani will also lay foundation stones of numerous companies under special make in Jharkhand drive, called “Momentum Jharkhand in Jamshedpur.
iv.Thesecond phase of the ‘Momentum Jharkhand’ will bring upon more employment and development to the state.
v.This initiative is under the ongoing Momentum Jharkhand initiative of state government whose theme is ease of doing business in the state.
vi.In 4 months, 900 people were given employment in the manufacturing unit of the textile sector.
vii.Theongoing ceremony, named as”Second Groundbreaking Ceremony” foundation stones for 70 companies.
China launches First Cyber Court in e-commerce Hub
On August 18, 2017, China launched its first cyber court specialising in handling internet-related cases in the e-commerce hub of Hangzhou amid a spike in the number of online disputes.
About China’s first Cyber Court:
i.The Hangzhou Internet Court in Hangzhou, capital of east China’s Zhejiang Province will handle cases such as online trade disputes and copyright lawsuits.
ii.The cases handled by the court will be tried online.
iii.On August 17, 2017, the Hangzhou municipal legislature appointed the president, vice presidents and judges of this court.
iv.It is to be noted that Hangzhou is home to many Internet companies, including e-commerce giant Alibaba.
BANKING & FINANCE
RBI Introduces ₹ 50 banknote in Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will soon release Rs 50 denomination banknotes in the Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series, having signature of Governor Urjit R. Patel. RBI clarified that all the Rs 50 banknotes in the earlier series will continue to be a legal tender. In December 2016, RBI had announced that it would soon issue new currency notes of Rs 50 and Rs 20.
About Rs 50 denomination banknotes in the Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series:
- The base colour of the new note is fluorescent blue. It has a motif of Hampi with Chariot on the reverse, depicting the country’s cultural heritage.
- The note has geometric patterns aligning with the overall colour scheme, both at the obverse and reverse. Dimension of the banknote will be 66 mm x 135 mm.
Design & Security Features Rs 50 denomination banknotes in the Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series:
i.Front Side of the Note
ii.Back Side of the Note…Click here to view more details
First regional Centre of NDB opens in South Africa
The first regional centre of the New Development Bank was officially opened on 17th August 2017 by South African President Jacob Zuma and the banks Indian head K V Kamath. It was set up by India and other BRICS nations.
i.The New Development Bank (NDB), formerly referred to as the BRICS Development Bank, is a multilateral development bankestablished by the BRICS states (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa). It has anauthorized capital of the bank is USD 100 billion.
ii.The idea for setting up NDB was proposed by India at the 4th BRICS summit in 2012 held in New Delhi.
iii.The Creation of a NDB was the main theme of the meeting.
iv.In 2017 it is expected to approve loans aggregating between USD 2.5 and USD 3 billion for about ten projects.
v.In 2018 it is expected to present about 15 to 20 projects involving a total lending of about USD 4 billion for the boards consideration.
vi.The main target is to end 2018 with a total loan book of about USD 8 billion dollars for approximately 35 projects.
vii.NDB has received total capital contributions of about USD 2.6 billion, including advance payments from member countries. It is expected to receive another USD 900 million by January 2018.
Nestle India ties up with Amazon to launch new range of Maggi Noodles
Nestle India has tied up with Amazon India for the launch of its new Nutritious range of Maggi Noodles.
About Nutritious range of Maggi Noodles:
i.The new range will be available first on Amazon.in, and the company, subsequently, aims to roll it out across retail outlets in India.
ii.Nestle India general manager, foods, Maarten Geraets said the association with Amazon will help the company reach out to consumers across India.
iii.He added that new Maggi Nutritious Noodles are in line with Nestle’s “Simply Good” initiative to provide healthier & tastier choices to consumers.
iv.The Nutritious range is a wholesome proposition targeted towards the breakfast occasions.
Rajasthan govt signed JV agreement for refinery project with HPCL
On August 17, 2017, Rajasthan State Government and public sector oil firm Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) inked an agreement to form a joint venture company for Barmer petroleum refinery and petrochemical complex.
- On April 19, 2017, after prolonged negotiations that lasted over three years, Rajasthan State Government signed a revised MoU with HPCL for a 9 million metric tonne crude oil refinery at Barmer that would require investments of Rs 43,129 crore and produce fuels meeting BS-VI specifications.
- As per the claims made by the present Rajasthan Government, revised deal will save the state Rs 40,000 crore with annual viability gap funding of Rs 1,123 crore for 15 years instead of Rs 3,736 crore as per the previous MoU that former CM Ashok Gehlot signed with HPCL.
- Principal Secretary Mines and Petroleum, Aparna Arora and Director (Finance) of HPCL, J. Ramaswami signed the JV agreement respectively on behalf of the Rajasthan State Government and the HPCL.
- As per the proposed plan, the refinery project would be established in 4,813 acres of land area….Click here to view more details
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Dr. (Ms.) Mamta Suri takes charge as Executive Director, Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI)
On August 16, 2017 Dr. (Ms.) Mamta Suri took charge as Executive Director, Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) in New Delhi.
- Dr. Suri was serving as Chief General Manager, Insurance Regulatory Development Authority of India.
ii.Dr. Suri got Ph.D. in Finance from University of Delhi and M.Sc., Insurance Risk and Management from City University, London.
iii. Dr. Suri is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) from the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts of India, and she has completed her graduation in law.
iv.She has also received Honorary membership for High Scholastic Achievement from USA.
Vladimir Putin appoints Nikolay Kudashev as Russia’s New Envoy to India
Russian President Vladimir Putin has appointed career diplomat Nikolay Kudashev as Russia’s new ambassador to India announced on 19th August 2017.
i.Kudashev, a specialist in South East Asia, is currently the Deputy Director General Secretariat of the Ministry of foreign Affairs of Russia.
ii.Kudashev was the Russian Ambassador to Micronesia and the Marshall Islands in 2014-2015.
iii.The appointment of Kudashev comes nearly seven months after the death of Russia’s previous ambassador to India Alexander Kadakin.
Prime Minister:Dmitry Medvedev
Sri Lanka appoints Travis Sinniah, First Tamil Navy chief after four decades
Rear Admiral Travis Sinniah was appointed as the chief of Sri Lankas naval forces.Sinniah is the first from the Tamil community to head the Navy since the outbreak of the civil war in the north and east of the island in 1972.
i.Rear Admiral Travis Sinniah, who has served Sri Lanka Navy for many decades, took office as the Navy Commander.
ii.His services will be effective from 22nd August and Sinniah succeeds Vice Admiral Ravi Wijegunaratne who has retired.
iii.He is the second Tamil to head the Lankan Navy after RajanKadirgamar, who was the commander in the late 1960s.
iv.Sinniah, who played a pivotal role in the destruction of the LTTE warships in deep sea during the height of the civil war, was appointed as the Navy chief by President MaithripalaSirisena.
v.Sinniah, who joined the Navy in 1982, was the senior most Naval officer to be in active combat operations at sea during the conflict with the LTTE separatists.
vi.It was also announced that Wijegunaratne would be appointed as the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS).
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Scientists develop artificial womb to save premature babies
Scientists have developed an artificial womb has been successfully tested to save premature babies.
i.It has been developed by researchers from the University of Western Australia and Tohoku University Hospital in Japan.
ii.The study was published in ‘The American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology’.
iii.The main aim of the researchers is to develop an effective treatment strategy for extremely premature infants born at the border of viability (22-23 weeks).
iv.The premature babies were successfully kept in a healthy, infection-free condition for a period of one week.
v.Thetherapy which is used to incubate the premature babies is called ex- vivo uterine environment (EVE) therapy.
vi.The equipment involved includes high-tech amniotic fluid bath combined with an artificial placenta.
vii.EVE therapy could be used to prevent the severe morbidity suffered by extremely premature infants.
viii.The foremost goal is to provide premature babies the chance to better develop their lungs and other important organs before being brought into the world.
Meghshala: Mobile app for Karnataka teachers
Bengaluru-based social education start-up Meghshala Trust has launched Meghshala (‘School on the Cloud’) offline mobile app on Google Play Store for the Android platform.It is supported by Tata Trusts.
i.The app empowers teachers with the necessary tools and resources to create classroom learning experiences.
ii.It is preloaded with over 2,500 of Meghashala’s ‘TeachKits’, aligned to the Karnataka State curriculum for science, maths, English and social studies.
iii.The content is multilingual and has lessons in Kannada, English, and Hindi.
iv.The teach kits will have new pedagogical techniques, teaching ideas, activities, videos, and pictures that help teachers engage with students.
v.The app could be downloaded on the smart phones for free and is easy for teachers to use in their classrooms.
vi.Rajeev Gowda, Rajya Sabha MP, and G. Raghuram, Director, Indian Institute of Management, Bengaluru, were present at the launch of the app at an event in Bengaluru.
vii.Jyoti Thyagarajanis the founder and trustee of Meghshala.
“NASA launches “”TDRS-M”” satellite to help astronauts talk to Earth”
NASA has launched TDRS-M satellite on 18th of August 2017. It is the latest in a series of satellites.
i.It aimed at ensuring astronauts at the International Space Station can communicate with Earth.
ii.The satellite will support critical space communication into the mid-2020s.
iii.The $408 million Boeing-made Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-M) rose into space atop an Atlas V rocket that launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida.
iv.TDRS-M is the last of 13 such satellites that have been launched since 1983.
v.The satellite will facilitate space-to-ground communication for NASA’s low-Earth orbit operations.
vi.It will ensure scientists, engineers and control room staff can readily access data for missions like the Hubble Space Telescope and the International Space Station.
vii.An antenna on the satellite was damaged recently at a processing facility in Titusville, Florida.
viii.The satellite was repaired, but the mishap set the launch back by about two weeks.
Virat Kohli continues to top ICC ODI rankings for batsmen
India captain Virat Kohli continues to top the ICC One-Day International rankings.It has been announced on 18th of Aug 2017.
i.In the latest rankings released by the game’s governing body Kohli tops the list of batsmen with 873 points.
ii.Kohli who has a 12-point lead over second placed Aussie opener David Warner, will look to enhance their position.
iii. Former skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (12th) place Shikhar Dhawan (13th) place and vice- captain Rohit Sharma (14th) place.
iv.In the bowlers’ list, Bhuvneshwar Kumar (13th) is the only Indian in top 15.
v. As for the ICC ODI Team Rankings, India are currently at number three with 114 points and they would have to win the upcoming series at least by a 4-1 margin to ensure that they stay at that position, ahead of England.
vi. The top two teams from this event will get to play in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
vii. Winning two matches will take Sri Lanka to 90 points, while the West Indies will reach at 88 points.
Serena Williams named highest paid female athlete of 2017
American Tennis Player Serena Williams has topped the Forbes’ list of highest paid female athletes of 2017 with $27 million in earnings between June 2016 and June 2017.
i.Her earnings, which include prize money and endorsements, is twice that of any other female athlete.
ii.The new list of Forbes’s list of the world’s 100 highest paid athletes in 2017, released on 17th of August 2017 includes 99 male athlete and Williams, are at the top of their sport.
iii.Williams ranked 51st on the list and made a $27 million in 2016.
Rinku Hooda bags silver at World U-20 Para Athletics Championships
India’s junior para-athlete Rinku Hooda won a silver medal in the Javelin Throw F46 at the first World Para Athletics Junior Championships.
i.World Para Athletics Junior Championships held in Nottwil, Switzerland.
ii.Hethrew a distance of 54.92 to make the second place.
iii.Hooda also participated in the IPC World Para Athletics Championships which took place in London in June. There he could finish at fourth place with a throw of 55.12 metres.
iv.During Rio Olympics last year he finished fifth.
v.He won his first national level medal in 2013 during a para nationals meet at the Rajiv Gandhi stadium in Rohtak.
World Humanitarian Day -August 19
World Humanitarian Day (WHD) is observed every year on 19thAugust to pay tribute to aid workers who risk their lives in humanitarian service, and to rally support for people affected by crises around the world.
i.The theme for WHD 2017 will be #NotATarget.
ii.This campaign follows a report by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, which called for the protection of civilians.
iii.Laying out his ‘path to protection’, Guterres appealed for enhanced respect for international humanitarian and human rights law and protection of civilians, including humanitarian and medical workers as well as civilian infrastructure.
iv.On 19 August 2003, a terrorist attack hit the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad, killing 22 people. Among those who lost their lives was Sergio Vieira de Mello, the UN’s top representative in Iraq.
v.Five years later, the General Assembly adopted a resolution designating 19 August as World Humanitarian Day.
vi.Every year since then, the humanitarian community has organized global campaigns to commemorate WHD, advocating for the safety and security of humanitarian aid workers, and for the survival, well-being and dignity of people affected by crises.
World Photography Day – August 19
World Photography day is observed on 19th August across the world. It aims to inspire photographers across the planet to share a single photo with a simple purpose and to share their world with the world.
i.World Photo Day originates from the invention of the Daguerreotype, a photographic process developed by Frenchmen Louis Daguerre and Joseph Nicephore Niepce in 1837.
ii.On19thAugust 2010 World Photo Day hosted its first global online gallery.
iii.Almost 270 photographers shared their pictures and people from over 100 countries visited the website.
iv.This marked the first official, globally reaching World Photo Day.
v.World Photo Day is a global event that’s aspiring to create positive change in the world through photography.
vi.By bringing together millions of photographers around the world, it will connect people in a global celebration that invests back into their local and global communities.