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Current Affairs Today – November 22 2015

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Current Affairs Today 22 November 2015INDIAN AFFAIRS

Windfall of Rs.3, 250 cr for decongestion and development of Delhi

During Swachh Delhi campaign, programme organized by the Delhi Govt, Minister of Urban Development Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu announced Rs.3, 250 cr special assistance for decongestion of roads and development of Delhi.

  • In this regard projects to be taken will be funded from the Urban Development Fund.
  • Delhi Govt will be provided with 1, 500 cr, Delhi Development Authority (DDA) with Rs.1, 665 cr and North Municipal Corporation of Delhi with Rs.85 cr for executing various projects.

Govt launches campaign to free Haryana of TB within five years

Haryana Govt chaired by CM Manohar Lal Khattar announced the launch of a campaign to free Haryana of tuberculosis (TB).State Govt will collaborate with Medanta-The Medicity for the “TB free Haryana” campaign, which will be supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

  • Brand ambassador of the campaign – Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan
  • 119 TB units, 260 microscopic centres and 8,245 Directly Observed Treatment, Short-course (DOTS) centres are functioning under the TB programme in Haryana.

As part of the campaign:

  • Medanta hospital will conduct a survey in slums to identify TB patients.
  • Health camps will be conducted in those areas and medicines will be distributed on the spot.
  • Patients will be diagnosed with the help of portable digital chest X-ray machines installed in vans.

The vans will travel to various districts in three phases in the next 5 years to make Haryana free of TB. Two such vans were flagged off. The districts to be covered in the first phase include Rewari, Gurgaon, Mewat, Palwal and Jhajjar.

Francois Hollande to be Chief Guest at 2016 Republic Day celebrations

Francois Hollande to be Chief Guest at 2016 Republic Day celebrationsFrench President Francois Hollande will likely to be the chief guest at the Republic Day parade of January 26, 2016.

  • The visit of Mr. Hollande to New Delhi for the mega pageant of January 26 will be symbolic and send a message of a worldwide solidarity among the democratic countries against terrorism of the IS which staged the November 13 attacks in Paris.

France is going to host the COP 21, Paris Climate Conference, summit in Paris starting from November 30. This year’s Republic Day Parade saw US President Barack Obama as the chief guest.

  • Hollande will be the third French president in India on Republic day in 2016. Earlier French Presidents Chirac came in 1998 and Nicolas Sarkozy was in 2008.

Railway Ministry inaugurates landmark Silchar-Lumding broad gauge rail line in Assam

The Railway Minister Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu inaugurated 210 kms long   Lumding-Silchar broad gauge section (Assam) by flagging off a goods train via video conferencing.

  • This is a landmark achievement by Indian Railways and important broad gauge railway connectivity project.
  • This Phase-I line provides seamless BG connectivity to Barak Valley of Assam with the rest of the country. The phase-II consists of gauge conversion of three sections namely Badarpur – Kumarghat, Baraigram – Dullabcherra and Silchar-Jiribam.

About Lumding-Silchar Gauge Conversion Project :

  • The Lumding-Silchar Gauge Conversion Project under the Northeast Frontier Railway was sanctioned in 1996-97 and was declared as a National Project in 2004.
  • In the initial years of the project the flow of funds had been very meager and allotments increased from 2004.
  • The project was hit by insurgency during the years 2006 to 2009 and Territorial Army had to be deployed in the region to curb the insurgency.

Key points :

Meghalaya was brought on railway map for the first time and also capital of Arunachal Pradesh was connected to the National Capital by a direct train.

Governing Council of NIIF constituted under the chairmanship of Finance Minister

To maximizing economic impact mainly through infrastructure development in commercially viable projects, both greenfield and brownfield, including stalled projects, Government has approved the creation of National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF)

Aim : To attract investment from both domestic and international sources.

  • A contributory and determinate investment trust called National Investment and Infrastructure Fund under the provisions of the Indian Trusts Act, 1882 has been registered. Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, is the Settlor of the Trust.

Members of Governing Council : 
Chairman: Finance Minister                                   –
Members : Secretary, DEA, Secretary, Financial Services, Ms Arundhati Bhattacharya, Shri Hemendra Kothari and Shri T.V. Mohandas Pai


WHO launched World Antibiotic Awareness Week

World Health Organization (WHO) launched the first World Antibiotic Awareness Week from 16 November to 22 November, 2015. In response to growing antibiotic resistance globally, WHO stresses the need to preserve the effectiveness of antibiotics to maintain global health security and strongly urges everyone to use antibiotics responsibly.

Theme“Antibiotics: Handle with Care”
Antibiotic awareness day18th November
Aim – To raise awareness and encourage best practices among the public, policymakers, health and agriculture professionals to avoid the further emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance.


Kotak subsidiary gets IRDAI nod to commence operations

Kotak Mahindra General Insurance Company (Kotak General Insurance) has received approval of the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) to commence business as an insurance company.

  • With the addition of general insurance business, Kotak Mahindra Group with existing presence across banking, wealth management, life insurance, broking, mutual funds and alternate asset management .
  • The merger of ING Vysya Bank with Kotak Mahindra Bank has also given us a larger customer base and an increased geographical footprint of more than 650 locations and 1,280 branches.

Key points :

  • Kotak Mahindra Bank Headquarters : Mumbai
  • Kotak Mahindra CEO: Uday Kotak

Axis Bank enters Bangladesh, opens representative office in Dhaka

Axis Bank opened a representative office in Dhaka, capital city of Bangladesh by Axis Bank group executive, (corporate relationship group & international business) P Mukherjee.

  • Total overseas assets of the Axis Bank stood at USD 7.51 billion, as on September 30, 2015.

Aim of the Bank :

  • To leverage the growing economic integration between the two countries by actively facilitating trade transactions, both inbound as well as out-bound.
  • The bank will also contribute towards employment generation, both directly and indirectly in the country.

Key points :

  • Axis Bank : Mumbai
  • Axis Bank  Chairman : Shikha Sharma


AAI signed MoU with IL&FS to bolster overseas expansion

Airports Authority of India (AAI) has have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with infrastructure giant IL&FS’ subsidiary IL&FS Global Financial Services to help it spread its wings overseas.

  • By signing MoU with IL&FS, AAI would be getting an opportunity in identification of airport development opportunities, transaction structure and financing facilities in Middle East, Africa regions as well as in CIS countries.

Key points :

  • IL&FS Global Financial Services CEO : Murugan Sankaran.
  • AAI chairman : R K Srivastava


UP’s Plantation Drive marked its name in Guinness Book of World Records

Uttar Pradesh has entered the Guinness Book of World Records for planting the most number of saplings in one day. As a part of its Clean UP, Green UP initiative UP government had under a greening drive of planting 10 lakh saplings in 10 locations in one day.

  • UP CM Akhilesh Yadav planted a peepal plant at Maudaha dam in Hamipur district as part of the drive.
  • The plantation drive was kick started by UP CM Akhilesh Yadav on November 7. The certificate for UP’s record setting performance was awarded to the CM at an official function in Saifai.

5 Golden Horse awards conferred on Hou Hsiao-hsien’s “The Assassin”

The film “The Assassin” by the veteran Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-hsien has clinched five awards, at the 52nd Golden Horse Awards which is considered as the most prestigious and time-honored film awards in the world of Chinese language cinema.

  • It won best director and best feature film, best cinematography, best makeup and costume design and best sound effects.
  • “The Assassin” is a martial art film, featuring a trained female killer who is faced with an impossible choice between love and duty.
  • The Golden Horse awards are considered the equivalents of the Oscars for Chinese-language movies.


India’s Supersonic interceptor missile AAD test-fired

India test-fired its indigenously developed supersonic interceptor missile, capable of destroying any incoming ballistic missile from a test range off Odisha coast.

  • The interceptor, known as Advanced Air Defence (AAD) missile, was engaged against an electronically prepared target which simulated the trajectory of a hostile ballistic missile.
  • After getting signals from tracking radars, the interceptor, positioned at Abdul Kalam Island (Wheeler Island), roared through its trajectory to destroy the incoming missile mid-air in an endo-atmospheric altitude.
  • The “kill” effect of the interceptor was being ascertained by analysing data from multiple tracking sources.

TCS, Intel launched Centre of Excellence for IoT in Hyderabad

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) collaboration with Intel launched a new Centre of Excellence (CoE) for Internet of Things (IoT) in Hyderabad.

About Centre of Excellence for IoT :

The primary focus of the centre is to integrate IoT solutions developed by TCS on Intel IoT platforms and to fast-track creation of end-to-end solutions.

  • The centre will focus on developing new use cases for various industries and create solution accelerators around Intel technologies for global customers in manufacturing, retail, hi-tech, semiconductors, healthcare and telecom industries, the company.
  • Intel will provide the new Intel IoT Platform reference architecture for smart and connected things to enable the development of secure and integrated smart solutions.


World’s largest Diamond found in Botswana

A 1,111 carat high quality  diamond has been discovered at a mine in Botswana.It was the biggest find in more than a century, according to the mine company.

  • The gem only second in size to the Cullinan diamond which was unearthered in South Africa in 1905, was mined by Lucara Diamond Corp.
  • The magnificent stone which originated from the south lobe of Lucara’s Karowe Mine, is the world second largest gem quality diamond ever recovered and largest ever to be recovered through a modern processing facility ,the Stockholm listed company.


Pankaj Advani wins 2015 IBSF World Snooker Championship

Pankaj AdvaniIndia’s most successful cueist Pankaj Advani won IBSF World Snooker  Championship for record 15 times after battling past his Chinese opponent Zhua Xintong by 8-6 score in the best-of-15 final at Hurghada in Egypt.

  • He had entered the finals of the Championship after defeating Alex Borg of Malta by 6-0 score.

About Pankaj Advani :

  • Pankaj Advani becomes the first person in history to take the short (6-Red) and the long snooker format in the same calender year.
  • He had won the 2015 IBSF World Billiards Championship in September this year.
  • Presently he is ranked world number 1 in 6-red snooker and World Team Billiards.


Former South Korean President Kim Young-sam dies at age 87

Former South Korean President Kim Young-sam dies at age 87Former President Kim Young-sam(87) who formally ended decades of military rule in South Korea and accepted a massive international bailout during the 1997-1998.As president, Mr. Kim laid the foundation for a peaceful power transfer in a country that had been marked by military coups.

About Kim Young-sam :

  • In 1954, Mr. Kim was elected as the youngest member of the National Assembly.
  • In 1992, Kim became the head of the ruling party and was elected president, five years after his first unsuccessful presidential bid.
  • Mr. Kim faced humiliation when he accepted a $58 billion bailout from the International Monetary Fund during the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s.