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Current Affairs Today – January 25 2016

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  1. Current Affairs January 2016
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Current Affairs Today 25 January 2016


Maharashtra’s first Solar Power operated Mini-Water Supply Plant commissioned

The first Solar Power operated Mini-Water Supply Plant has been commissioned in Hingna village of Mouda Taluka in Nagpur district Maharashtra. Solar power is the conservation of sun energy to usable electricity. Solar Power is a sustainable and renewable resource of energy.

  • The plant entirely run on solar power for which 1800 Watt panels have been installed.

“CRC” to improve ease of doing business

In order to catalyze the company incorporation related services, corporate affairs ministry under the initiative of Government Process Re-engineering (GPR) has initiated the Central Registration Centre (CRC).

  • It will be formally operationalized from January 27, 2016.
  • CRC will improve ease of doing business in the country by ensuring uniformity in application of rules and do away with discretion.
  • Objective – To provide speedy incorporation-related services within stipulated timeframes which are in line with international best practices.

For the automating of approval processes, GPR involves a three-pronged approach:

  • Utilising advanced software tools and engines
  • Rationalising and modifying some of the rules
  • Engaging professionals to expedite the process of manual scrutiny

In the first phase, CRC will look into applications for name availability (INC-1 e-forms) submitted online across the country and will process these by the end of the next working day.

Chhattisgarh Signs MOU on ‘UDAY’

GOI, Chhattisgarh and CSPDCL (Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company Limited) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for operational & financial turnaround of Discoms under the Scheme UDAY – Ujjwal Discom Assurance Yojana.
(Chhattisgarh CM – Raman Singh)

  • First MOU on “UDAY” signed was signed between the GOI, Jharkhand and the JBVNL (Jharkhand Bijli Vitran Nigam Limited) in start of Jan 2016.

About UDAY Scheme:
UDAY was approved to provide financial turnaround and revival of Power Distribution companies (DISCOMs). It envisages reducing interest burden, cost of power and AT&C losses.

  • Under the UDAY scheme, state governments which own the distribution utilities, would take over 75% debts of Discoms as on 30th September, 2015 in two years and pay back the lenders by selling bonds. For the remaining 25%, discoms will issue bonds.

New port development policy approved by Maharashtra

Maharashtra govt has given its consent to new maritime policy for port development to create better facilities around 720 km coastal region of the state.

  • Policy covers Greenfield ports, jetties, coastal shipping and inland waterways, shipyards, coastal economic zones and facilitation for maritime projects.
  • The state run Maharashtra Maritime Board (MMB) will be the nodal agency for all approvals concerning the port development and related infrastructure.

Government will soon set up Maharashtra Port Connectivity Corporation with the participation of Sagarmala Development Company, MMB and the state industries department to put in place necessary infrastructure for port development.

  • The individual connectivity project will be implemented through a special purpose vehicle in which Maharashtra Port Connectivity Corporation will be a holding company.

Union Cabinet clears President’s rule in Arunachal Pradesh

The union cabinet clears the President’s Rule in Arunachal Pradesh.Union Government takes the decision when the state assembly becomes unsuccessful to act in accordance with the provisions of Article 174 of the Constitution.

  • The political crisis in the Arunachal Pradesh began in December 2015 as 21 out of 47 ruling Congress legislators in the 60-member house rebelled along with 11 BJP and 2 independent legislators and extended support to Kalikho Pul to form new government.*Governor of Arunachal Pradesh– Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa


India comes out to be the 3rd largest Steel Producer

Last 5 months of 2015 have pushed the steel production in India to 2.6% compared to output of 87.3 mt in 2014 whereas the world steel output went down 2.8% in 2015 to 1.6 billion tonne.

  • With this rise in the steel production, India become the third largest steel producer in the world after China and Japan with a production of 6 million tonne (mt) in 2015, according to data released by the Brussels-based World Steel Association (WSA).
  • India aims to achieve a steel production of 300 million tonnes by 2025.


RBI seeks Rs 26k cr more for capital infusion by 2018

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has sought an additional Rs 26,000 crore from the government to be injected into state-run banks by 2018 as the current capital pledges are inadequate due to inflated stressed assets.

  • RBI has informed the government about the additional capital that will be needed by state-owned banks until 2018 as part of implementing Basel-III standards.

In this fiscal, government has spent Rs 20,000 crore on bank capitalisation and will infuse another Rs 5,000 crore before March. The government has pledged Rs 70,000 crore toward this end until FY19; Rs 25,000 crore of this in the next fiscal year.


ONGC gets environmental clearance for project in Krishna-Godavari basin

Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC) gets environmental clearance for a project in the Krishna-Godavari (KG) basin.Now ONGC has been allowed to drill 45 development wells and other related infrastructure in the KG basin in Andhra Pradesh.

  • The project will cost over 53,000 crore rupees.
  • The project will be implemented in the northern discovery area of NELP-I offshore block KG-DW N-98/2.
  • This spot is known for the D-6 block where Reliance Industries discovered the biggest natural gas reserves in India in 2002.


Padma Awards – 2016

The list of the India’s most prestigious and revered honours, “Padma awards” 2016 is out. 114 people will be bestowed with the Padma awards this year.

About Padma Awards
Initiated in 1954, Padma Awards have been announced every year on Republic Day and are conferred by the President at a function in Rashtrapati Bhawan in March/April. The award is given in three following categories:

  • Padma Vibhushan for “exceptional and distinguished service” – 2nd highest civilian award
  • Padma Bhushan for “distinguished service of a high order” – 3rd third highest civilian award
  • Padma Shri is awarded for “distinguished service” – 4th highest civilian award

Jeevan Raksha Padak Awards – 2015

The President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee has consented to confer the Jeevan Raksha Padak Series of Awards – 2015 on 50 persons. The Award categories are – Sarvottam Jeevan Raksha Padak to 3 persons, Uttam Jeevan Raksha Padak to 9 and Jeevan Raksha Padak to 38 persons; 09 awards are posthumous.

  • Out 50 awards, 9 awards will presented as posthumous
  • Jeevan Raksha Padak series of awards are given to recognize a person for meritorious act of human nature in saving the life of a person.


Amit Shah re-elected BJP president

Amit Shah re-elected BJP presidentFor a second term, Amit Shah (51) was elected as the president of the Bharatiya Janata Party for full time tenure of three years. He received 17 proposals from 20 state units.

  • According to the party’s constitution, at least 20 members each of the party’s National Council from five states need to propose the name of a presidential candidate.

Shah was elected as an MLA from Sarkhej in four consecutive elections: 1997, 1998, 2002 and 2007. He is a close associate of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

  • Shah’s ancestral house in Mansa is a heritage building.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa elected as the President of Portugal

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa elected as the President of PortugalMarcelo Rebelo de Sousa elected as President of Portugal by winning 52.4% of the votes against nine rivals. He will succeed Anibal Cavaco Silva. The 67-year-old law professor has had a long career in the public eye.

  • Earlier he served as a government minister and Member of Parliament, a law professor, journalist and political analyst.
  • He was granted the degree of Commander of the Order of Saint James of the Sword and the Grand Cross of the Order of Prince Henry (Ordem do Infante Dom Henrique).

Keys Portugal:

  • Capital – Lisbon
  • Currency – Euro


India to build satellite tracking station in Vietnam

India will set up a satellite tracking and imaging centre in southern Vietnam that will give Hanoi access to pictures from Indian earth observation satellites that cover the region, including China and the South China Sea.

  • The move is set to deepen ties between India and Vietnam, who both have long-running territorial disputes with China.

Billed as a civilian facility – earth observation satellites have agricultural, scientific and environmental applications. The improved imaging technology meant the pictures could also be used for military purposes.

  • ISRO will fund and set up the satellite tracking and data reception centre in Ho Chi Minh City to monitor satellite launches.

“Sahaj Scheme” for online booking of LPG cylinders

Union Government had launched Sahaj Scheme for online booking of LPG cylinders. The booking can be done through the unified web portal which is available in 13 languages.

  • The facility will enable people to book the cylinder around the clock, which will help delivery of the cylinders even in their absence because the payment is already done.
  • Government is targeting to add 10 crore new LPG connections by December 2018.

To ease the process of LPG refills and new connections, new cooking gas connections will be provided on an EMI basis under which the connections will cost up to 3400 rupees on an EMI basis. The amount can be spread over 24 installments.

  • Union Government dedicated the year 2016 as the “Year of the Consumers”.

Mosquito-borne Zika virus creates panic over birth defects in Latin America

In Latin America countries the Mosquito-borne Zika virus has created a panic over thousands birth defects. Babies with abnormal condition are born in the region due to the effect of the virus.

  • Virus is transmitted by Aedes aegypti Mosquito. It is mainly transmitted by daytime-active mosquitoes.
  • Protection against the mosquito bites and clearing stagnant water where mosquito breeds is the only prevention.
  • Virus is not contagious.
  • Headache, muscle and joint pain, mild fever, rash, pinkeye and inflammation of the underside of the eyelid are some common symptoms.


India won Blind T20 Asia Cup

India defeated Pakistan by 44 runs to win the first ever blind T20 Asia Cup at the Nehru Stadium, Kochi.

  • India scored 208/5 in 20 overs while Pakistan was able to score only 164 runs.
  • In the category of group stages, Pakistan has won a victory over India.

Ayyaz Muhammad of Pakistan was named as the man of the match.

Izumo Takuto and Zhu Chengzhu won ITTF World Junior Circuit Finals

Japan’s Izumo Takuto and Hong Kong’s Zhu Chengzhu became champions at the  International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) World Junior Circuit Finals in the boys’ and girls’ categories, respectively.


Malayalam film actress Kalpana Ranjani passes away

Malayalam film actress Kalpana Ranjani passes awayKnown for comic roles, Malayalam film actress Kalpana Ranjani aka Kalpana passed away in Hyderabad due to heart attack. She was a sister of actresses Urvashi and Kalaranjini.

  • She had acted in 300 odd films in South Indian languages.
  • In 2012, she was conferred with National Award for Best Supporting Actress for “Thanichala Njan”.
  • In 1983, she made her debut in the film industry as a child artist.

Her Malayalam hits include “Ennum Eppozhum”, “Karnavar”, “Dolphins”, “Bangalore Days” and “Spirit”. Kalpana also acted notable Tamil films like “Kakki Sattai”, “Idhaya Thiruda”, “Sathi Leelavathi” and “Chinna Veedu”.


National Voters Day & National Tourism Day

Government of India (GOI) has decided to celebrate January 25 as ‘National Voters Day’  and ‘ National Tourism Day’ every year.