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Recommendations of Justice Srikrishna committee to review the Institutionalization of Arbitration Mechanism
A high level committee headed by former Supreme Court Judge Justice B N Srikrishna set up to review the Institutionalization of Arbitration Mechanism, has submitted its recommendations to Union Law ministry.
i. The Department of Legal Affairs, Ministry of Law and Justice, on January 13, 2017 constituted a ten Member, High Level Committee under the Chairmanship of Retired Judge, Supreme Court of India, Justice B. N. Srikrishna.
ii. Other members of the committee included Justice R.V.Raveendran – Retired Judge of Supreme Court of India, Justice S. Ravindra Bhat – Judge at High Court of Delhi, K.K.Venugopal – Sr. Advocate and presently Attorney General for India, P.S.Narasimha – Additional Solicitor General of India, Ms. Indu Malhotra – Senior Advocate at Supreme Court of India, Arghya Sengupta – Research Director at Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy, Arun Chawla – Deputy Secretary General of FICCI and Vikkas Mohan – Senior Director of CII.
Green Airports in Andhra Pradesh
On 3rd August 2017 ,Minister of State in the Ministry of Civil Aviation Shri Jayant Sinha informed that the Indian Government is encouraging to develop green airports.
♦ The Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) became the first airport in the world, to be completely powered by solar energy.
i. Now,Airports Authority of India ( AAI )has inaugurated installation of 1MWp solar power plant at Tirupathi and Vijaywada Airports.
ii. Based on the capacity permissible under Net-Metering policy of States, (AAI) has set up Solar Power Plants at various airports for its captive power consumption
iii. AAI has completed installation of solar power plants at 29 airports of different locations with a total capacity of 12.84 MWp.
Adopts new resolution, UNSC moves to thwart terrorists’ access to weapons
On August 2nd 2017 ,The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has adopted a resolution to preventing terrorists from acquired weapons, particularly small arms and light weapons.
i. The Council mentioned continue flow of weapons, military equipment, unmanned aircraft systems (UASs) and their components,and improvised explosive device (IED) components to and between the Islamic State, Al-Qaida, their affiliates, and associated groups, illegal armed groups and criminals, Xinhua reported.
ii. The 15-member body strongly pointed out that the “destabilize accumulation and misuse” of weapons threat to international peace and cause significant loss of life.
iii. UN member states were encouraged to prevent and disrupt procurement networks for weapons, systems and components between such groups and entities.
The United Nations Security Council (UNSC)
♦ The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations, charged with the maintenance of international peace and security.
♦ Its first session held on 17 January 1946. The Security Council consists of fifteen members.
Southeast Asian diplomats open talks in Manila
Southeast Asia’s top diplomats have opened their annual meeting at a convention and theater complex by Manila Bay.
♦ Southeast Asian foreign ministers and their counterparts from the U.S., China, Russia, Japan, the two Koreas and other have arrived to the 50th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum (ARF) meeting in Manila on Aug 5, 2017.
i. Motorists were allowed through as joggers, cyclists and tennis players sweated under a cloudy sky.
ii. Topping the agenda are the intercontinental ballistic missile tests by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, and a siege by pro-Islamic State group militants in the southern Philippine city of Marawi, which has dragged on for more than two months.
Association of Southeast Asian Nations
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN ) is a regional intergovernmental organisation comprising ten Southeast Asian states which promotes Pan-Asianism, intergovernmental cooperation and facilitates economic, political, military, educational and cultural integration amongst its members and Asian states.
♦ Formed – 8 August 1967
♦ Secretariat – Jakartaa
♦ Motto – “One Vision, One Identity, One Community”
♦ Chairman – Rodrigo Duterte
♦ Secretary General – Le Luong Minh
BANKING & FINANCE
Canara Bank hits overseas bond market with $400-mn issue
Canara Bank has hit the international debt market with a benchmark dollar bond issue that will have a tenor of 5 years. Through this issue, Canara Bank will raise $400 million as part of its $2 billion medium-term note programme. A medium-term note (MTN) is a debt note that usually matures (is paid back) in 5–10 years.
i. Bond sale will be drawn through London branch of Canara Bank.The bonds will be listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange.
ii. Foreign rating agency Moody’s has assigned a Baa3 rating to the issue, which is on par with the sovereign rating since majority stake in the bank is owned by the Indian government.
Kotak Bank’s new forex service ‘ Kotak Remit’
Kotak Mahindra Bank has launched a new service called “ Kotak Remit”.
i. This service is an Aadhaar-based integrated outward forex remittance solution for both customers and non-customers.
ii. It is a 24×7 forex remittance service.
iii .It offers a completely paperless process that will be helpful to users to register online using Aadhaar and PAN numbers, and initiate remittances instantly.
About Kotak Mahindra Bank
♦ Founded – 1985 (as Kotak Mahindra Finance Ltd)
♦ Headquarters – Mumbai, India
♦ The executive vice chairman & MD – Uday Kotak
Companies to disclose bank defaults within one day: SEBI
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has directed to companies which fail to disclose any default on the payment of interest or repayment of principal to banks or financial institutions within a day.
♦ On 18 July, Sebi issued a circular with listed banks to disclose divergences in bad-loan estimates to stock exchanges as soon as they receive a communication from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
i. SEBI has directed that, starting 1 October, listed companies will need to disclose defaults on loan repayments within one working day.
ii. Listed companies would need to inform exchanges in case they have defaulted in payment of interest, installment obligations on debt securities, loans from banks and financial institutions and external commercial borrowings.
iii. Companies would need to disclose the information about date of default, name of the bank/financial institution that lent the money, default amount and gross principal amount on which the default occurred.
Forex reserves surge to record $392.86 billion
During the week to July 28, the RBI showed data which refers the country’s foreign exchange reserves surged by $1.536 billion to touch $392.867 billion, helped by rising in foreign currency assets (FCAs).
i. In the previous week, it had increased by $2.27 billion to $391.33 billion.
ii. Foreign currency assets (FCAs) rose by $1.609 billion to USD 368.759 billion. FCAs include effect of appreciation or depreciation of non-US currencies such as the euro, the pound and the yen held in the reserves.
iii. Gold retains unchanged at $20.35 billion. The special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) went up by $3.9 million to $1.495 billion.
L&T signs first EPC contract with Indian Railways
On August 4, 2017, Indian Railways signed its first Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract with L&T for large electrification projects. Including this contract, Railways Ministry has signed total nine EPC (engineering, procurement, construction) contracts for electrification of railway lines at a cost of Rs. 2,800 crore.
i. The first EPC contract worth Rs. 1,050 crore was awarded to private sector engineering major L&T for electrifying 781 route kilometres.
ii. This contract has been awarded for electrification of Delhi Sarai Rohilla – Rewari and Alwr – Bandikui – Jaipur – Phulera – Ajmer (353 km) section at a cost of Rs 594 crore and Roha – Verna (428 km) of Konkan Railway at a cost of Rs. 456 crore.
Essar arm to build coal terminal at Beira Port
Essar Ports has signed a 30-year concession agreement with the Government of Mozambique to develop a 20 million tons per annum (MTPA) coal terminal at Beira Port as part of a Public Private Partnership (PPP) project.
i. The project will be executed through a subsidiary, New Coal Terminal Beira (NCTB), which is a joint venture between Essar and Portos e Caminhos de Ferro de Moçambique (CFM).
ii. The first phase of this project will be developed at a cost of close to $275 million and will entail developing dedicated berths, along with state-of-the-art, mechanised and environment-friendly systems.
Tata Memorial ties up with IDA for prevention of oral cancer
On August 3rd 2017, Tata Memorial Centre has joined with the Indian Dental Association (IDA) to initiate India’s first digital initiative for prevention and early detection of oral cancer.
♦ Tata Memorial Centre and The Indian Dental Association (IDA) have launched a special course on “Oral Cancer” on July 27 – the World Head and Neck Cancer Day to create awareness and early detection of oral cancer.
Tata Memorial Centre
Tata Memorial Centre is destination for cancer treatment and multi-disciplinary approach towards head and neck cancer.
About Indian Dental Association (IDA)
The IDA is the largest recognized association of dental professionals in India with a presence in 29 states and seven Union Territories and over 450 local branches spread across the country.
L&T bags Rs. 3,375-crore Mauritius metro project
Mauritius government-led Metro Express Limited has given an order to Larsen & Toubro (L&T) to design and build an Integrated Light Rail-based Urban Transit System in the African island nation with an estimate cost of Rs. 3,375-crore.
i. S.N. Subrahmanyan, CEO & Managing Director, L&T has informed that the project that has been won against competition and will be fully funded through a Government of India grant and Line of Credit.
ii. The project describes by 26-km route will connect Curepipe to Immigration Square in Port Louis and will feature 19 stations, two of which will be elevated stations.
iii. The project should be completed in 48 months and L&T commits to complete and deliver a priority section of 13 km in 24 months.
Key points of L&T
♦ It was founded by two Danish engineers taking refuge in India.
♦ Headquarters : Mumbai
♦ CEO : S. N. Subrahmanyan
♦ Founded : 1938
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Donald Trump appoints three Indian-Americans to key govt posts
The Donald Trump has appointed three Indian-Americans to key posts in the government, confirmed the US Senate.
The three Indian-Americans are Neil Chatterjee, Krishna R. Urs, and Vishal Amin.
i. Neil Chatterjee was confirmed as a member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Chatterjee is the second Indian American to be appointed by Trump to a major regulatory position with a controversial mission.
ii. Krishna R. Urs was confirmed as the Ambassador to Peru. Urs took over after James Costos, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama, resigned.
iii. Vishal Amin got the post of White House Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator.
UP CM makes Akshay Kumar the new brand ambassador of Swachh Bharat Mission
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath declared the Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar become the brand ambassador of the Swachh Bharat Mission.
i. His upcoming film “Toilet: Ek Prem Katha” deals with building toilets in villages and putting an end to open defecation in India.
ii. CM Adityanath has also made Akshay Kumar’s film tax-free in Uttar Pradesh.
Payback announces Gautam Kaushik as new CEO
Payback India has appointed Gautam Kaushik as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO). He will spearhead Payback’s India operations.
i. At Payback India, Gautam Kaushik’s primary focus would be towards driving engagement through new touch points and creating transformational customer experiences.
ii. He will lead all the critical business areas including Strategic Business Planning and Development, Partner Management & Acquisitions and Customer Engagement.
iii. Prior to joining PAYBACK, Gautam was working with American Express (AMEX) as Vice President (VP) and Chief Financial Officer (CFO), wherein he drove several potential acquisitions and strategic partnerships impacting critical business growth for AMEX in India.
President Paul Kagame wins the Rwanda Election by Landslide
President Paul Kagame of Rwanda has won a third term in office with a landslide victory in election held on August 4, 2017.
More Information about Rwanda Presidential Elections:
i. Mr Kagame won 98.66 percent votes while his two little-known rivals barely made a dent.
ii. Frank Habineza of the Democratic Green Party – the only permitted critical opposition party – won 0.45 percent of votes and independent candidate Philippe Mpayimana scored 0.72 percent votes.
iii. Other eight opposition parties did not put forward a candidate and instead backed President Kagame.
iv. It is to be noted that Kagame, has been in power for 17 years.
♦ Capital: Kigali
♦ Currency: Rwandan franc
♦ President: Paul Kagame
Darshan Lal, First Hindu in Pak govt in over two decades
Darshan Lal is the first Hindu escorted into the highest level of Pakistan government in more than two decades in the predominantly Islamic country.
i. The Pakistan Supreme Court had disqualified former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. So Pakistan’s new Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi formed his cabinet on August 4th 2017.
ii. Mr. Lal would head coordination between four Pakistani provinces.
iii. Darshan Lal, 65, is a practicing doctor from Mirpur Mathelo town in Ghotki district of Sindh.
♦ Capital – Islamabad
♦ Currency – Pakistani rupee(PKR)
♦ President – Mamnoon Hussain
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
ISRO and CSIR-NPL sign MoU for time and frequency traceability services
On 4th August 2017,A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the ISRO Telemetry Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC), Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Department of Space and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)-National Physical Laboratory (NPL), Ministry of Science and Technology, in New Delhi.
i. The MoU provides for time and frequency traceability services to ISRO by CSIR-NPL.
ii. V. V. Srinivasan, Director, ISTRAC on behalf of ISRO and Dr D K Aswal Director, NPL, on behalf of CSIR was signed The MoU.
iii. People who witnessed the signing of MoU was The Union Minister for Science & Technology, Earth Sciences and Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Harsh Vardhan and Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region (I/C), Prime Minister’s Office, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Jitendra Singh.
iv. The DG, CSIR, Dr Girish Sahni, and other senior officers were also present on the occasion.
Khel Ratna recommended for Paralympian Jhajharia,Sardar
Devendra Jhajharia has become the first paralympian to be recommended for India’s highest sporting honour — the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna — along with celebrated former hockey captain Sardar Singh.
i. Javelin thrower Jhajharia, the first Indian to win two Paralympic gold medals, was the first choice of the awards selection committee headed by Justice (Retd) C K Thakkar.
ii. The committee has picked 31-year-old midfielder Sardar Singhas as its second nominee for the top honour and has suggested that both Jhajharia and Sardar be considered for the award jointly.
iii. The final call on this would be taken by the Sports Ministry.
iv. The awards selection committee has also recommended 17 names for the Arjuna award.
Joshna and Dipika get bronze at World Doubles Squash Championship
Indian doubles pair of Joshna Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal Karthik bagged for a bronze medal at the WSF World Doubles Squash Championship.
i. They have lost against English pair of Jenny Duncalf and Alison Waters in the semifinals.
ii. In mixed doubles, Indian pairs of Saurav Ghosal and Dipika and Vikram Malhotra and Joshna Chinappa crashed out one after the other in the two quarterfinals held concurrently on side by side courts.
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