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Current Affairs Today – January 11 2016

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Current Affairs Today 11 January 2016

INDIAN AFFAIRS

Mission Indradhanush added Four new vaccines

Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Jagat Prakash Nadda has announced that a set of four new vaccines will be added soon under “Mission Indradhanush”.

  • As a part of India’s newborn action plan,inactivated polio vaccine, adult Japanese Encephalitis vaccine, Rotavirus vaccine and Measles Rubella vaccine will be added.
Railways gets its first ‘Make in India’ luxury coaches
Railway
Railway Board chairman AK Mittal inspected first luxury ‘Make in India’ railway coaches at Habibganj railwaystation(Bhopal). The coaches then sent to New Delhi and inspected by Railway minister Suresh Prabhu.

Highlights:

  • Designed by: Bhopal’s coach rehabilitation workshop (CRWS), Nishatpura
  • Trial:Successful final test run of luxury coaches was completed between Bhopal to GanjBasoda and back to Habibganj.
  • First to use these coaches:Jabalpur-HazratNizamuddinSamparkKranti Express
  • Habibganj Station will be the very first station of the country to be redeveloped
  • As per plans, 111 coaches are to be manufactured by CRWS of which 87 would be non AC, 17 would be for AC 3 tier, 5 for AC 2 tier and one each for AC 1 and chair car.

*Luxury on wheels*

  • LED reading lights, snacks table in side berths
  • Multi mobile charging points
  • Fire extinguishers on both side of coach
  • Water bottle holder next to every seat
  • Green toilet system with soap case and dustbin
  • Fire-proof seats made of poly vinyl material
  • Floor painted like carpet
  • Middle berths have side support and railing instead of chains

Minister of Railways inaugurates Implementation of E-enabled Track Management System (TMS) & Mobile Application of TMS on Indian Railway and Track Inventory Management System on Northern Railway

Minister of Railways Suresh PrabhakarPrabhu inaugurated Implementation of E-enabled Track Management System (TMS) & Mobile Application of TMS on Indian Railway and Track Inventory Management System on Northern Railway at Rail Bhawan, New Delhi to bring efficiency and effectiveness in management practices.

  • Management of track maintenance: It involves handling of volumes of data statistics as well as dynamic analysis of various measurement and defects and planning, deployment of large resources.
  • E-enablement of Track Management System (TMS): To promote e-working in civil engineering department of Indian Railways. It is being implemented on all the 68 divisions of Indian Railways.

Benefits:It will contribute to planet earth by removing more than 1.0 lakh registers related to track maintenance. This will result in saving of close to 500 trees a year.

*Minister of State for Railways:ShriManojSinha

INTERNATIONAL

Sri Lanka government proposes new constitution 

Sri Lanka’s new government presented its plan for a new constitution aimed at devolving power and preventing the sort of ethnic tensions that led to a long and bitter civil war that ended in 2009.
  • The move comes as reformist President Maithripala Sirisena‘s administration takes some steps to promote post-conflict reconciliation and address alleged war crimes committed during the 26-year conflict between government troops and Tamil Tiger rebels.

Features of New constitution:

  • Government intends to strengthen democratic rights, promote national reconciliation and establish a political culture that respects the rule of law.
  • The new constitution will also guarantee fundamental rights and freedoms that assure human dignity and promote responsible and accountable government.

Keys Sri Lanka:

  • Capitals – Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, Colombo
  • Currency – Sri Lankan rupee
  • PM – Ranil Wickremesinghe

Kenya published new Broadcast Regulations

Kenya has published new broadcast regulations to place strict limits on sexual content and ban preachers from soliciting money on air.

Regulations:

  • New rules apply to programmes as well as advertisements, programme listings and promotions.
  • Bans preachers from soliciting money from audiences in exchange for blessings.
  • Traditional churches have been highly critical of these types of preachers, describing them as false teachers.

*Points to remember:Kenya

  • Capital & Currency: Nairobi, Kenyan shilling
  • President:Uhuru Kenyatta

BANKING & FINANCE

HDFC Standard Life sets up reinsurance arm at Dubai IFC

HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company set up a wholly-owned reinsurance company at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

The subsidiary HDFC International Life and Re Company Limited (HILRCL)has been set up with an initial capital of USD 12.33 million.

  • Business: To offer reinsurance capacity to insurers and may also venture directly into underwriting insurance contracts, subject to receipt of necessary approvals.
  • It will initially offer reinsurance capacity in the UAE and subsequently expand to other jurisdictions.

*Points to remember:HDFC

  • CEO: AdityaPuri
  • Headquarters: Mumbai
  • Founder: Hasmukhbhai Parekh

BUSINESS

RINL Inks MoU with Andhra Government Facilitating Investments in the State RINL to Make an Investment of around Rs 38500 Crores

RINL, a corporate entity of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant inked an MoU with the Government of Andhra Pradesh during the 22nd CII Partnership Summit & 1st Sunrise AP Investment Meet” currently being held in Visakhapatnam.

Investment: Rs.38,500crores by RINL to take up various projects at Visakhapatnam with an employment opportunity to around 3000 people.

Key persons:Shri PC Mohapatra, Director (Projects), RINL and ShriKartikeyaMisra, IAS, Director of Industries

Highlights:

  • Coke Oven Battery-5
  • Expansion of RINL to 5-12 mtpa with an estimated investment of Rs 25,000 crores.
  • Slurry Pipeline & Pellet Plant Project (Joint Venture with NMDC & Others) at an investment of Rs. 6,100 crores.
  • Transmission Line Tower Project (JV with POWERGRID) with an investment of Rs. 330 crores.

*CMD, RINL:Shri P Madhusudna

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

Mangaluru Airport conferred as best in the country

Mangaluru International Airport (MIA) has achieved the fifth rank in terms of customer satisfaction and handling among the 53 two-tier airports in the country. The internal survey was done by a private agency for the Airports Authority of India. The 53 airports had handled upto 15 lakh passengers a year.

  • The rank was based on the customer satisfaction survey conducted during July to December period 2015.

Golden Globe Awards 2016

The 73rd Golden Globe Awards held at Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California honoring best in film and American television of 2015.

  • The ceremony was produced by Dick Clark Productions in association with theHollywood Foreign Press Association.
  • Show HostRicky Gervais

Washington receives Cecil B DeMille Award

Denzel Washington(New York,US)received Cecil B. DeMille award at the 2016 Golden Globes.

About Washington’s career:

  • American actor and filmmaker
  • Seven Golden Globe Award nominations and two wins.
  • Two Academy Awards, one Tony Award, a BAFTA Award, two Emmy nominations, an NAACP Image Award and even a Grammy.

*Other Golden Globes 2016 Winners

  • Best Motion Picture, Drama: The Revenant
  • Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Drama: Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
  • Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Drama: Brie Larson, Room
  • Best Motion Picture, Comedy: The Martian
  • Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy: Jennifer Lawrence, Joy
  • Best Foreign Language Film: Son of Saul, Hungary

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Binny Bansal named Flipkart CEO

Flipkart

India’s largest e-commerce platform Flipkart.com named co-founders Binny Bansal as its new chief executive officer (CEO). He will succeed Sachin Bansal.

  • Sachin Bansal will now take the position of executive chairman with immediate effect.
  • Mukesh Bansal will continue to be head of the commerce platform at Flipkart & chairman of Myntra and will now additionally runFlipkart’s advertising business

Mukesh Bansal & Employees of all corporate divisions including human resources, finance, legal, corporate communications and corporate development will report to Binny Bansal.

  • Flipkart is an e-commerce company founded in 2007 by Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal. The company is registered in Singapore, but has its headquarters in Bangalore, Karnataka

Burkina Faso’s president named Paul Kaba Thieba as Prime Minister

Economist Paul Kaba Thieba was named as the Prime Minister of Burkina Faso by the President Roch Marc Christian Kabore.

The announcement was made a week after the president was sworn in as the country’s first new leader in almost three decades following his election in November 2015.

  • 56-year-old Thieba has worked for many years with as an economist for the West African central bank, BCEAO, in Ivory Coast. Now, he is charged with forming President Marc Roch Kabore’s government as the country continues with a democratic transition after 27 years under leader Blaise Compaore.
  • Compaore was overthrown in October 2014 after being in power since 1987.

Keys Burkina Faso:

  • Capital – Ouagadougou
  • Currency – West African CFA franc

VikasThapar appointed as Vice President of Micromax

Micromax has appointed VikasThapar as its new senior vice president for finance.

New Position: Building the company’s asset and revenue base while leading external relationship developments with all key partners including bankers, equity partners, investors and with the government.

Previously worked in:

  • Telecom, IT and infrastructure sectors.
  • Executive director at Avocado Management Services
  • One97 Communications (PayTm), BhartiAirtel and Morepen Laboratories.

Micromax:Micromax is an Indian consumer electronics company headquartered in Gurgaon, Haryana.

  • Sanjay Kapoor (Chairman)
  • VineetTaneja(CEO)
  • By 2010, it was one of the largest domestic companies making handsets in the low-cost feature phone segment in India.
  • As of Q3 2014, Micromax is the tenth largest smartphone vendor in the world.

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Viruses developed to protect “Muga silkworm”

Researchers at a university in Britain have developed viruses that could halt the decline of “Muga” caterpillar in India which produces one of the finest silks in the world.

  • Muga caterpillars produce a highly valuable silk are dying from bacterial infections in Assam.
  • Muga silk is produced only in the North East India as the silkworms form their cocoons. The caterpillars have been in decline over the last few years because they areeating infected leaves.

ENVIRONMENT

NASA’s Kepler spacecraft finds 100 new alien planets orbiting other stars

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA’s) revamped planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft has discovered more than 100 planets orbiting other stars.

  • The Kepler spacecraft discovered these alien planets during its K2 mission by using the transit method.

What is Transit method?

It is detection of the tiny brightness dips caused by the planet after it crosses its host star’s face from spacecraft’s perspective. Transit method technique requires extremely precise pointing of spacecraft.

About Kepler spacecraft:

Kepler was launched in March 2009 and was tasked with determining how commonly, Earth-like planets occur throughout the Milky Way galaxy.

  • Since its launch, the mission has been incredibly successful and has led to finding of more than 1,000 alien planets of which half are exoplanets to be ever discovered.

SPORTS

Sloane Stephens claims second WTA title in Auckland

Sloane Stephens claims second WTA title in Auckland

Sloane Stephens has claimed her second WTA title after winning two matches in a day to triumph at the ASB Classic in Auckland.

  • The 22-year-old defeated Julia Goerges by 7-5 6-2 in the final.
  • 1993 born Sloane Stephens is an American tennis player who is currently ranked World No. 30 by the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA).

Stan Wawrinka wins 2016 Chennai Open title

World No. 4 Stanislas Wawrinka from Switzerland has won the 2016 Chennai Open title of tennis. In the summit clash at Nungambakkam tennis stadium in Chennai, he defeated the Borna Coric (World No. 33) of Croatia by 6-3, 7-5 score.

  • This was his third consecutive ATP Chennai Open title for Wawrinka (won in 2014, 2015 and 2016) and overall fourth, first won it in 2011.
  • With this win, Wawrinka pocketed US $ 75,700 and won 250 ranking points.

About Chennai Open title:

The Chennai Open is a professional tennis tournament played on outdoor hard courts. It is currently part of the ATP World Tour 250 series of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) World Tour.

  • It is held annually in the month of January at the SDAT Tennis Stadium in Chennai.

OBITUARY

First female F1 driver Maria Teresa de Filippis passes away

Maria Teresa de Filippis, the first woman to race in a Formula 1 grand prix has died at the age of 89.

  • The Italian started three grand prix for the Maserati team in 1958 with a best finish of 10th at Spa in Belgium.
  • The late Lella Lombardi, another Italian, who started 12 grand prix between 1974-76 is the only other woman to start a Formula 1 race.

Noted Hindi writer and journalist RavindraKalia passes away

Noted Hindi writer and journalist RavindraKalia(78) passed away. He had been suffering from liver cirrhosis.

About RavindraKalia:

  • He is Known for his works like ‘NauSaalChottiPatni’ and ‘GhalibChuttiSharab’
  • BharatiyaJnanpith director was also the editor of several literary magazines, including

Rhythm and blues singer Otis Clay passed away

Rhythm and blues singer Otis Clay passed away

The one-time Grammy nominee, inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2013 died of a heart attack. He was 73.

  • Rhythm and blues artist Otis Clay, a Blues Hall of Fame musician who also was a community activist on Chicago’s west Side.
  • He was a one-time Grammy nominee.

Clay was preparing upcoming U.S. and European tours and had been nominated for two Blues Music Awards one for his album with Billy Price and one for soul blues music artist.

  • Clay was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2013.