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Current Affairs Today – July 29 2016

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Centre forms ‘Disha’ for timely implementation of Central Schemes
i. Union government announced the formation of District Development Coordination and Monitoring Committee (DDCMC) to be named Disha.
ii. The move comes from the government for effective development coordination of almost all the programmes form the government, be it infrastructure development or Social and human resource development.
iii. The Committee would monitor the implementation of 28 schemes of Rural Development  Ministry and other Ministries and will coordinate with Central and State and local Panchayat Governments, for successful implementation of the same.

CM Chandrababu Naidu launches ‘Mission Harita Andhra Pradesh’
Andhra CM Mission Haritai. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu inaugurated the Mission Harita Andhra Pradesh’, with the theme green cover for a happy living to increase the green cover in the state to 50 per cent by the year 2029.
ii. The mission is about planting saplings at Sunkollu village under Nuzividu mandal in Krishna district.
iii. The Naidu led AP govt also mulling to establish a tree bank and bring a white paper and an action plan for implementation of the Mission Harita.

Cochin Chamber launching Aadhaar-based e-certificate of origin
i. Cochin Chamber Commerce and Industry (CCCI) and IIT Madras backed Myeasydocs jointly launched the Aadhaar-based e-certificate of origin to prove the actual origin of their products to the customers abroad. This is the first of its kind.
ii. T he Digital move from CCCI will help the regulator to manage digital entreaties and digitally sign off electronic Certificates of Origin for the exporters and freight forwarders in the region.
iii. The joint move not only helps the exporters in showcasing the point of origin and also to avail of duty exemptions under Free Trade Agreement (FTA).

NetApp signs deal for Varanasi’s Smart City initiatives
i. American storage and data management company NetApp has signed a MoU with Varanasi and Karnal Municipal Corporation to develop Smart City Developments.
ii. The Data major will provide storage, surveillance and security infrastructure also to get the specifications, design elements and architecture right of the projects.

BRICS employment working group meeting concludes in Hyderabad
i. The two-day long meeting also first meeting of BRICS Employment Working Group (BEWG) meet concluded in Hyderabad.
ii. The meeting was staged with senior Officers between BRICS Countries to shape the agenda for Labour and Employment track also several aspects of strengthening the BRICS Nations.
iii. In the culmination of the meet a consensus was shown to include social security and inclusive growth in the draft declaration to be made in the Goa Meet.


Indian-American Girl Sruthi Palaniappan Becomes Youngest Delegate At Democratic National Convention
As like icing a cake, Sruthi Palaniappan, 18-year-old Indo-American has become the youngest delegate at the Democratic National Convention which has nominated Hillary Clinton as the party’s presidential candidate.
i. Sruthi Palaniappan is the youngest delegate at the DNC and it is also noted that Hilary Clinton is also the first ever Woman Candidate for the US president nominations.
ii. Sruthi Palaniapan is a student of the prestigious Harvard University and an ardent supporter of Hilary Clinton, to make her as the first ever woman president of the United States.
iii. She is from Cedar Rapids and his father Palaniappan Addiappan also a member of the Credential Committee and attending the convention meeting.


Axis Bank ties up with LIC to extend its Insurance cover across India
Axis Bank has signed an agreement with Life Insurance Corporation to distribute policies of the country’s largest life insurer. This is the largest bancassurance partnership after the IRDAI allowed banks to sell policies of more than one company.
i. As on June 30, 2016, Axis Bank had a network of 3,006 domestic branches and extension counters situated in 1,882 centres and this is one of the largest bancassurance partnerships after the recent Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) regulations issued on open architecture framework for banks.
ii. The partnership with LIC would enable the bank to further expand its existing bouquet of offerings and put forth a compelling proposition for its customers. Apart from LIC, Axis Bank also has a tie-up with Max Life Insurance in the life insurance space. In the initial phase, Axis Bank branches in West Bengal, Bengaluru and Panchkula in Haryana will start selling LIC products.
iii. Banks have increased their role in Insurance distribution with ‘bancassurance’ being the biggest contributor. Over the last five years the Life Insurance business at Axis Bank has grown at a CAGR of over 25%. The partnership with LIC would enable it to further expand the existing insurance establishment

OKI completes installation of 600 cash recycling ATMs for SBI across India
OKI, Tokyo completed the installations of 600 sets of cash recycling ATMs of ATM-Recycler G7 kind to the State Bank of India. This is the second large deployment of the cash recycling ATM in India.
i. A cash recycling ATM is a vault that handles cash coming and cash going out for both the teller instructions needed in the teller line in the POD environment.
ii. SBI procured OKI’s cash recycling ATMs in 2015 and deployed them in four of its designated regions across India and extended to 600 recycling ATM across India in June.
iii. The Oki ATM Recycler G7 accepts rupee banknotes in denominations of 50, 100, 500 and 1,000. Its cash-recycling function reduces cash management and operational costs compared with ordinary cash dispensers and non-recycling ATMs
iv. India is an important market for Oki and completing this project with SBI within expected timelines is a significant achievement for OKI and it also plans to build on this program experience and participate in bids for larger opportunities with SBI and other banks.
About OKI :
OKI is a Japanese electric and electronic manufacturing company established in 1880 and its headquarters is in Tokyo, Japan


Four New Writers Get Jnanpith ‘Navlekhan’ Award
Bharatiya Jnanpith’s 11th Navlekhan award which constitutes of a cash awards of Rs.50,000 each along with a certificate of merit and an idol of Vagdevi is awarded to the following

AwardeesBook Name
Amlendu TiwariParityakt
Balram KawantSara Morila
Om NaagarNib Ke Chire Se
Tasneem KhanYeh Mere Rahnuma

nanpith 'Navlekhan' Awardi. The choosing panel headed by eminent Madhusudan Anand and Vishnu Nagar, Govind Prasad and Om Nischal decided the final list of the awardees.

ii. The mission of the Navlekhan award is that writer’s genius blossoms best in the natural climate of his mother tongue. The medium of language has, thus, a regional character. In effect, however, the production of a literary masterpiece becomes a national achievement and an international asset. Although a writer because of an inner urge and a number of factors contribute to the creation of a literary masterpiece, social recognition.


Aruna Sundarajan made new Secretary of ministry of ITx
i. Kerala cadre IAS officer Aruna Sundarajan has been appointed Secretary of the Ministry of electronics and IT (MEIT) which is newly coined Portfolio in the Ministry. The Office bearer i.e. Current Secretary Aruna Sharma has been moved to the ministry of Steel.
ii. Aruna had earlier served as the CEO of the National Common Service Centre (CSC) apart from being administrator of the USO Fund.
iii. The Ministry of electronics has carved out form the IT and Telecommunications Ministry is set to focus on Digital India and Aadhaar also Make in India with its push on electronics manufacturing.

CK Mishra Appointed New Health Secretary
i. Bihar cadre IAS officer of 1983 Batch CK Mishra has been appointed the new Health Secretary. He will fill the shoes of IAS officer BP Sharma, who has been appointed secretary, Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).
ii. On the other hand IAS officer of the Punjab cadre NS Kang has been made Secretary and Director General of the organisation after upgradation of his post.
iii. Kang was associated with the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) as additional secretary.

First woman chief of aviation regulator DGCA, M Sathiyavathy named as new Union Labour Secretary.
First woman chief of aviation regulator DGCA, M SathiyavathyM Sathiyavathy was named as the new Union Labour Secretary of Director General of Civil Aviation. She is the first woman chief to hold the post since inception of the Aviation Regulating Body.
Central government —Reshuffle at the secretarial level of the,

NoAppointeeAppointed as Prior to Appointment
1Aruna SharmaSecretary of Ministry of SteelSecretary of Ministry of Electronics and Information & Technology.
2Aruna SundarajanSecretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information & Technology.Secretary of Ministry of Steel
3Bhanu Pratap SharmaDepartment of Personnel and Training as Secretary.Secretary, Department of Health and Family Welfare
4AK DubeyDepartment of Youth Affairs as Officer on Special Duty and will take charge as SecretarySpecial Secretary, Ministry of Coal
5M SathiavathySecretary in Ministry of Labour and Employment as Officer on Special DutyDirector General, Directorate General of Civil Aviation
6Dinesh Singh,Department of Land Resources as Officer on Special Duty. Singh will take over as SecretarySpecial Secretary, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation,
7Amarjit Singh,Secretary of Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation,Special Secretary –Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation,
8Rakesh Srivastava,Secretary, National Commission for Backward Classes.working in his state cadre Rajasthan
9Latha Krishna RaoSecretary, Department of Social Justice and Empowerment
10C K Mishra,Secretary– Department of Health and Family Welfare,Additional Secretary, Department of Health and Family Welfare,
11NS KangSecretary and Director General, National AIDS Control OrganisationAdditional Secretary, Department of Health and Family Welfare,
12B K PrasadSecretary, National Commission for Denotified, Nomadic & Semi-Nomadic Tribes.Additional Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs,
13Smita ChughSecretary– Tariff Commission under Department of Industrial Policy and PromotionMember Secretary in the same organisation.
14Rajeev KapoorSecretary- Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration, MussoorieDirector in the same organisation.
15Amarjeet SinhaSecretary, Department of Rural DevelopmentAdditional Secretary, Department of Rural Development

T Nanda Kumar resigns as NDDB chairman
Bihar cadre IAS officer T Nanda Kumar has resigned as chairman of Gujarat-based National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) with the effect form August 1.
T Nanda Kumar resigns as NDDB chairman
ii. Kumar is 1972 batch IAS officer for Bihar cadre also attended various short-term training Programmes at the universities of UK, France, and the US, including Harvard.
iii. Earlier he had served as chairman of the Spices Board in Cochin and as food secretary in 2006. He was agriculture secretary in 2008.

Lt. Anurag Thakur joins Territorial Army after clearing SSB
BJP’s Lok Sabha member and Indian cricket board President Anurag Thakur is commissioned into the Territorial Army in the rank of Lieutenant by army chief General Dalbir Singh.
Lt. Anurag Thakur joins Territorial Army after clearing SSBi. Lieutenant Anurag Thakur cleared the Services Selection Board and was found fit for joining the Territorial Army, the second line of defence after the Indian Army and he has been commissioned in 124 Infantary Batallion (Territorial Army) Sikh.
ii. Lt. Thakur became the first serving BJP Member of the Parliament to join the military force.
iii. The Territorial Army also guards vital installations like ammunitions dumps and airports, as also vital lines of communications
iv. Anurag Singh Thakur is a member of Lok Sabha from Hamirpur in Himachal Pradesh in India and he was elected as the youngest President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India in May 2016. 


Oracle acquires Net suite for $9.3 Billion, indicating its growth in cloud computing business
i. In order to gain market share in the fast-growing cloud computing business, Oracle acquired Net suite in a whopping $9.3 billion cash deal.
ii. Oracle and NetSuite both offer software applications that help companies automate back end and administrative operations from technology to human resources.
iii. Oracle Corporation established in 1977 is an American multinational computer technology corporation, headquartered in Redwood City, California. The company primarily specializes in developing and marketing database software and technology, cloud engineered systems and enterprise software products.
iv. NetSuite Inc. established in 1998 is an American software company based in California, that sells an eponymous group of software services used to manage a business’s operations and customer relations. Customers access these services over the internet, through internet browsers, paying a periodic subscription fee.
v. It is noted that Oracle has also acquired companies such as Textura and Opower to increase its competitiveness in the cloud market and these deal help Oracle to catch up with competitors such asWorkdayand that specialize in cloud-based offerings.
vi. It is noted that NetSuite’s chief executive, Zach Nelson was responsible for Oracle’s global marketing from 1996 to 1998.


IMD sets up new dynamic model in collaboration with IITM for efficient monsoon predictions
i. A supercomputer running on a dynamical model will make India’s annual summer monsoon forecast probably from next year.
ii. A dynamical monsoon model works by simulating the weather on powerful computers and extrapolating it over particular time frames is going to be employed for the efficient and accurate interpretation of the monsoon conditions in India.
iii. The dynamical model has been used on an experimental basis in the past few years, Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) scientists in Pune are now confident that it can be used as the main operational model to make India’s monsoon forecast. IITM works closely with IMD on forecast technology.
iv. IITM has been working along with various climate research centres in India and abroad on the development of a coupled dynamical model for forecasting the Indian summer monsoon under the aegis of the Earth System Science Organization’s Monsoon Mission project.
v. The experimental forecast based on the coupled dynamical model said that the monsoon rainfall during 2016 is likely to be 111% of the long-period average (LPA) with a margin of error of 5%.

IGI, New Delhi gets India’s first elevated taxiway for efficient fuel consumption
i. India’s first elevated taxiway will be set up in Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi.  This new infrastructure add-on will get the help the Airport operator to cut down on the time taken by an aircraft to reach a runway and lead to fewer delays.
ii. The taxiway, which will accommodate aircraft as big as Airbus A380, will help the airlines save fuel as the plane now have to travel a long distance to reach their take-off points and is likely to be operational by 2020.
iii. To save fuel, the airlines prefer the runway closer to the terminal to avoid covering Western Link, this establishment of the 2.5 km Eastern Cross Taxiway, which is going to connect the Runway 10-28 lying on the side of domestic terminal 1-D with Runway 11-29 at T3, will pass over the central spinal road connecting the two terminals.
iv. Let it be DIAL, ATC or any airlines, this elevated system will optimize airside utilization and it will create a win-win situation for every authority working at the airport. It will also help ATC to assist a flight to clear its runway soon after its landing thereby providing way for other incoming flights.
v. It is noted that an aircraft now has to crawl for about 20-25 minutes before preparing for the take-off.
About IGI:
♦ Name – Indira Gandhi International Airport
♦ Establishment – 1930
♦ Owner – Airport Authority of India
♦ Operator – DIAL (Delhi International Airport Private Ltd.)


Germany captain Bastian Schweinsteiger retires from international football
i. German’s midfielder and captain bastian Schweinsteiger has announced his retirement from international football. He retires as country’s fourth most-capped player with 120 appearances for the nation.
ii. The German Skipper made debut in 2004 also holds the German record for European Championship appearances, having played 18 times at the tournament.
iii .He was a part of the germen team that won the Winning the 2014 World Cup also Manchester United midfielder, however he has two years left in United contract.


Renowned Afro-American writer James Alan McPherson Passed away
i. The Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa announced the death note of James Alan McPherson, who overcame segregation and the narrow prism of a legal education to become the first black writer to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.
ii. McPherson was born in Savannah,Georgia in 1943. He passed away on July 27 at the age of 72 in Lowa city following a prolonged Pneumonia.
iii. He was a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and a MacArthur Fellowship.
iv. At the time of his death, McPherson was a member of the permanent faculty and professor emeritus of fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
v. McPherson won the 1978 Pulitzer Prize for fictionfor his short story collection Elbow Room, becoming the first African-American to win the Pulitzer for fiction.
vi. It is noted that John Updike selected his short story “Gold Coast” for his collectionBest American Short Stories of the Century and in October 2011 McPherson was honored as the inaugural recipient of the Paul Engle Award from the Iowa City UNESCO City of Literature.

Renowned Table Player Lachhu Maharaj Passed Away
Renowned Tabla Player Lachhu Maharaj Passed Awayi. One of the finest but little-known musicians of the Banaras gharana and a great Tabla maestro Pt Lachhu Maharaj passed away in Varanasi on July 28.
ii. He was born on 16 October 1944 and he played the instrument in many Bollywood films
iii. Lachhu Maharaj was nominated for Indian civilian award, Padma Shri, but refused it on the grounds that the biggest honour for an artist was the appreciation of audience.
iv. PM Narendra Modi and UP CM Akilesh Yadav expressed their deep condolence for irrepairable loss the table maestro


International Tiger Day – July 29
i. International Tiger Day is celebrated annually on July 29 to raise awareness for tiger conservation.
ii. The day is witnessed to promote the protection and expansion of the endangered wild tigers habitats and to gain support through awareness.
iii. The day was coined in 2010 at the St. Petersburg Tiger Summit. The summit had issued declaration on Tiger Conservation with an aim to double the big cat population by 2022.
iv. On the other hand India has most number of tigers over 2200 as per the latest data available.