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Current Affairs Today – May 21 2016

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RGI releases Census 2011 data on Households by religion, Sex of head of household and household size
Registrar General and Census Commissioner released the Census Data 2011 on Households by religion, sex of head of household and household size depicts the percentage of households to total households in main six religious communities.
Table reveals the Total No. of household & % of Total Households

Religious CommunitiesTotal no. of households(in million)Percentage to Total households
Total Households248.8100.0

Government sets up panel to relook defence expenditure
i. Union government has appointed the 11-member committee led by Lt Gen D B Shekatkar(retd) to relook defence expenditure
ii. Aim :  To ensure India’s combat capabilities and potential are enhanced, with a better teeth-to-tail combat ratio, within budgetary constraints.
Committee Work:
Shekatkar committee will recommend measures to enhance the combat capabilities of the over 13-lakh strong armed forces and “Re-balance” the overall defence expenditure in view of the escalating salary and pension bills.
♦ Rs 2.58 lakh crore allocated for defence in 2016-17 Budget
♦ Defence Minister : Manohar Parrikar

J P Nadda launches ‘Kayakalp Fortnight’ to be observed across the country in Central Government hospitals 
J P Nadda launches ‘Kayakalp Fortnight’i. Union Health Minister, J P Nadda launches ‘Kayakalp Fortnight’ at AIIMS, New Delhi in order to set protocols for hygiene and sanitation at government health facilities.
ii. ‘Kayakalp Fortnight’will be observed throughout the country in various central government hospitals from 20th May to 3rd June, 2016.
Objectives of Kayakalp:
standards and protocols have been put in place for upkeep of services within and outside the buildings.
♦ support services such as laundry and food are provided at various locations.
waste management and infection control measures are taken.
♦ Committees and sub-committees are formed to periodically review and monitor the progress.

After liquor, Bihar government bans gutka and pan masala
i. Bihar government has decided to prohibit the distribution, manufacture, storage, distribution, consumption, transportation, display or the sale of any type of ‘gutka’ and pan masala for a period of one year with effect from 21st May 2016 announced by RK Mahajan, commissioner Of Food Safety,Bihar
ii. The state is empowered under Section 30 (2) (a) of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.
Effects of Gutka and pan masala:
•  Gutka and pan masala containining tobacco or Nicotine. It causes acute Hyper- magnesemia, cardiac arrest, oral sub mucous fibrosis, oral cancer, Leukoplakia, Esophageal cancer, Stomach cancer, Metabolic abnormalities, reproductive health, Gastro intestinal and respiratory diseases.
♦ Valmiki Wildlife Sanctuary
♦ Bhimbandh  Wild Life Sanctuary
♦ Udaipur  Wild Life Sanctuary


First metro line to the sea opens in Los Angeles
i. The 6.6-mile Expo Line extension from Los Angeles to Santa Monica marks the return of commuter train service to the sea for the first time since 1950’s
ii. This 1.5 billion line to be one of the metro system’s most popular, far exceeding the expected passenger count of 30,000 per day.
iii. It will save the time of the people who are spending too much time in their cars.
iv. According to the data company Inrix, Los Angeles has the worst traffic in the country, with drivers wasting an average 81 hours idling in their cars in 2015.

First world conference on tourism for development held in Beijing to step up International Cooperation
First World Conference on Tourism for development to promote the tourism in lifting people out of Poverty and Building peaceFirst world conference on tourism Venue: Beijing, China
Inauguration By: Taleb Rifai, Secretary General of the UN World Tourism Organization
Participants: about 1000
Held from 18 to 21 May 2016
Theme: “Tourism for Peace and Development”
Organized by: UNWTO and the Government of China
i.  Sustainable Development Group – Integrated approach to tourism development
ii. Tourism for Poverty Reduction – Governments, the international community, the private sector and academia can collaborate to enhance tourism’s contribution to poverty reduction
iii. Tourism for peace- focused on the links between tourism and the building blocks of peace


Apollo Health & Lifestyle to raise $135 million from IFC
i. Chennai-based Apollo Hospitals arm Apollo Health and Lifestyle is planning to raise $135 million from World Bank arm International Finance Corporation (IFC).This includes equity investment of around $68 million.
ii. IFC includes around $34 million for its own account and around $34 million for IFC’s Asset Management Company.
iii. This funding expansion is used  to open approximately 1,100 new centers and to cover the losses that will continue to accrue until the centers reach maturity.
iv. The project is located in several cities throughout south and east India.
♦ The International Finance Corporation is an international financial institution that offers investment, advisory, and asset management services to encourage private sector development in developing countries.
♦ HQ : Washington, D.C., United States
♦ CEO: Philippe Le Houérou


Mumbai based Mukesh Ambani honored with Othmer Gold Medal for Entrepreneurial Leadership
i. United Based Chemical Heritage Foundation honored the Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani with prestigious Othmer Gold Medal for his entrepreneurial leadership
ii. Awarded during the occasion of the Heritage Day of the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF)
Venue: Philadelphia, United States of America.

Lhakpa becomes first woman to climb Everest seventh time
i. Lhakpa Sherpa,US-based Nepali climbed Mount Everest for the seventh time , breaking her own record for the most summits of the world’s highest mountain by any woman.
ii. She works in a 7-Eleven shop in Connecticut in the US
iii. Two Sherpa climbers share between them the record of 21 ascents of Everest, the most number of climbs by men.


United Nations Secretary appoints Mary Robinson, Macharia Kamau as special envoys for El Nino, climate
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has nominated special envoys for El Nino and Climate
1.Former Irish President Mary Robinson
2.Kenyan diplomat Macharia Kamau
El Nino Weather occurrence every two to seven years results in change of rainfall patters and causes drought and flooding
Affecting Area:
♦ Sudan – UN estimated that 400000 people need food due to El Nino related drought
♦ Ethiopia – Experienced severe drought ever in 50 years

Ex-finance Secretary, Ratan P Watal, appointed as Niti Aayogs Principal Adviser 
Ratan P Watal, appointed as Niti Aayogs Principal Adviseri. Former Finance Secretary, Ratan P Watal has been appointed as Principle Adviser for social sector in Niti Aayog .
ii. He has been appointed to the post for three years by the Department of Personnel and Training.
iii. Ratan P Watal, a retired IAS officer of Andhra Pradesh cadre, had been Finance Secretary from August 2015 to April 2016.

Cairn India MD and CEO Mayank Ashar resigns
i. The petroleum exploration arm of London-listed Vedanta Resources Cairn India’s managing director (MD) and chief executive officer (CEO) Mayank Ashar has resigned from his post.
ii. He will be replaced by the company’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Sudhir Mathur as the interim CEO.
About Cairn India :
♦ Cairn India is an oil and gas exploration and production company, headquartered in Gurgaon, India
♦ It is a subsidiary of Vedanta Resources.
♦ It was founded in 2007.


Cyclonic storm ROANU hits eastern coast of India  & India sends ships with relief material to cyclone-hit Lanka
i. An active cyclonic Storm Roanu in the Bay of Bengal has hit the eastern coast of India.
ii. It is the first tropical cyclone of the annual cyclone season.
iii. Due to the tropical cyclone Roanu, 43 people have been killed and 133 were missing following massive landslides and floods in the Kegalle region of Sri Lanka.
iv. India sends two ships Naval Off Shore Patrol (NOPV) INS Sunayna and one survey vessel INS Sutlej with 30-40 tonnes of relief material, which includes inflatable rafts, fresh water, medical supplies, clothing and other provisions necessary for disaster relief operations to cyclone-hit Sri Lanka.


China beats South Korea to win Uber Cup 2016 badminton final
China beats South Korea to win Uber Cup 2016 badminton finali. China beat South Korea 3-1 on Saturday to win the Uber Cup badminton final.
ii. Tang Yuanting and Chen Qingchen beat Chang Ye-na and Lee So-hee 21-14, 21-16 in doubles to give the hosts an insurmountable 3-1 lead
iii. Indian women’s team settled for a bronze medal after suffering a 0-3 defeat at the hands of defending champions China in the semifinals of the Uber Cup badminton championship, at Kunshan in China.

Mary Kom, Sarita Devi fail to qualify for Rio
Five—time world champion M C Mary Kom and Asian Games bronze—medallist L Sarita Devi failed to qualify for the Olympics after they went down in their respective second round bouts of the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships


Emmy award winning actor Alan Young dies aged 96
Emmy award-winning English-born actor Alan Young, who rode to enduring TV fame alongside a talking horse on the popular 1960s sitcom “Mister Ed” and co-starred in the classic sci-fi film “The Time Machine,” has died at age 96.


International Buddha Poornima Diwas 2016
International Buddha Poornima diwas 2016 is being celebrated on 21.05.16 to commemorate the Buddha Birthday on the auspicious full moon day of the Monday.
Chief Guest:  Shri Rajnath Singh, Union Minister for Home Affairs
Vesak Samman Prashasti Patra-2016 Awardee
1.Ramesh Chandra Tiwari
2.Professor Geshe Ngawang Samten
3.Dharmachari Lokamitra
4.Bhadanta Galgedar Prajnanada Mahasthavir

World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development
The World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development is observed every year on May 21st for the promotion of diversity issues.
i. This day was created as a result of the destruction of the Buddha statues of Bamiyan in Afghanistan in 2001.
ii. The day provides us with an opportunity to deepen our understanding of the values of cultural diversity and to advance the four goals of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions adopted on 20 October 2005

Anti-Terrorism Day Observed across India on 21 May
Anti Terrorism Dayi. Anti-Terrorism Day observed Across India on 21 May 2016. The day is celebrated as 25th Death Anniversary of former Prime Minister of India Rajiv Gandhi.The day is marked by a pledge taking ceremony among other activities.
ii. The Day is observed to generate awareness in the country among all sections of people, about the danger of terrorism and violence and its effect on the people, society and the country as a whole.