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Current Affairs Today – November 30 2016

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CA NovemberINDIAN AFFAIRS

Son irrespective of his marital status has no legal right in parents’ house, can stay at their mercy: Delhi high Court
i. The Delhi High court on November 29, 2016,  directed that a son, irrespective of his marital status does not have any legal right to live in his parents’ house.
ii. Justice Pratibha Rani directed, where the house is self-acquired by the parents, son could reside in his parents’ house only at their “mercy” up to the time the parents allow, as they have cordial relations and not because they have to bear his “burden”.
iii. The High court gave this judgment after a senior citizen parents had filed a law suit seeking the court’s orders for their son and daughter-in-law to vacate the house in their possession as they had made their parents “life hell”.
iv.The jugement had gone in the favour of the parents who had filed complaints at the police station and also issued public notices in 2007 and 2012 about debarring the son and his wife from their self-acquired property.
v. Both the sons and daughters-in-law had contested the suit before the trial court while denying the allegations and also claimed that they were the co-owners of the property as they had contributed towards its purchase and construction.
vi. The trial court had however ruled the decision in the favour of the parents, following which the son and his wife had moved to the High court.
vii. The High Court Justice, Pratibha Rani noted that the son and his wife had failed to prove that they too had contributions in the purchase of the house, while the parents had established their contention by revealing the necessary documents.

India Switzerland Signs MoU to extend Indo-Swiss Building Energy Efficiency Project (BEEP) by five years
i. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between India and Switzerland for a joint project on energy efficiency of buildings in November 2011, for duration of five years.
ii. Based on the excellent results achieved by the project in the first phase,
the ambassador of Switzerland to India, Andreas Baum, and Raj Pal, economic adviser at the Indian Ministry of Power, signed a pact to extend the Indo-Swiss Building Energy Efficiency Project (BEEP) by five years till 2021,
iii. The objective of the collaboration has been to reduce the overall energy consumed in buildings through sharing of best practices between the two countries in energy efficient design, construction and technologies.
iv. The extended MoU was exchanged between the two governments at the international conference – Energy Efficient Building Design: Experiences and Way Forward, on November 28, 2016.
v. The three-day international conference discussed the results and experiences from BEEP’s first phase and to bring together 200 building energy experts from both India and overseas to exchange knowledge and experience on some of the key aspects of building energy efficiency.
viThe Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) were designated as implementing agencies for the project.

Supreme Court Mandates Playing National Anthem in Theatres Before Movies.
i. The Supreme Court on November 30, 2016, made it mandatory for cinema halls to play National anthem before screening of a film in theatres across the country.
ii .Aim: to instill a sense of committed patriotism and nationalism in citizens.Supreme Court Mandates Playing National Anthem in Theatres Before Movies.
iii. A Bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy said that “People must show respect to the national anthem and the national flag and pay respect to the anthem. People now-a-days don’t know how to sing national anthem and people must be taught.
iv. The Centre and States have been given a week’s time to implement the court’s order.SC ordered that nobody can print or display the Anthem on any undesirable object, and also barred it from being played on variety shows.
v. The court order came after a PIL filed was by Shyam Narayan Chouksey, a retired engineer in Bhopal. Chouksey questioned the bench to illustrate a set of parameters that amounts to abuse of the anthem under the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971.
vi. The petition sought the anthem to be played in cinema halls across the country before screening of films and also issue a protocol for the playing or singing of the anthem at functions where constitutional dignitaries are in attendance.
vii. The national anthem is already played before movies in some states – such as Maharashtra since 2003. It was mandatory for cinema halls to play the National Anthem after every movie in the 1960s, but the practice faded away.

NIT Agartala signs 3 MoUs with ONGC, NEEPCO business
i. National Institute of Technology (NIT) Agartala has signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC), North Eastern Electric Power Corporation Ltd (NEEPCO) and iBuild
ii. The MoU would be valid for five years in the sector of knowledge updating, collaborative research in oil sectors, imparting training and conducting short term courses, which will facilitate a better atmosphere for research and development
iii. NEEPCO will provide internship training, joint collaborative research to mitigate industrial problems related to power generation
iv. ONGC will provide space for the students’ in hand on experience in exploration works and iBuild will support for incubation, mentoring and funding to develop business models based on feasible innovation

Mumbai poetry festival to feature 51 poets from 5 countries
i. The ‘Poets Translating Poets’ festival held in Mumbai from November 25-27,2016 to transcend boundaries of language and culture, through the act of translation and poetry
ii. Nearly 51 poets from Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka and Germany participated in the festival.
iii. It was the culmination of a two-year-long Indo-German literary exchange project to address the issues of identity politics.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

World Economic Forum reports-India’s Ranks 102th among 136 economies in terms of enabling cross border trade
i. According to the ‘Global Enabling Trade Report 2016’ of World Economic Forum (WEF), India has improved its ranking by four places to 102nd position among 136 economies in terms of enabling cross border trade.
ii. While India’s position has jumped four slots to 102, that of South Africa has improved three places to 55 while that of China stood at 61 compared with the previous ranking of 63.
iii. However, Brazil’s ranking has slipped to 110 from the earlier 97 while that of Russia dropped to 111 from the 105th position.
Top 5 countries :

Rank Country
1  Singapore
2  Netherlands
3  Hong Kong
4  Luxembourg
5  Sweden

Singapore students are the World’s best in Mathematics and Science-TIMSS Report
i. An international benchmarking study, Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) released a report on November 29, 2016 that, Singapore students are the world’s best in Mathematics and Science.
ii. The test was administered by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement, a non-profit research cooperative based in Amsterdam.
List of  Top 5 Countries:

Secondary Maths Secondary Science Primary Maths Primary Science
1.   Singapore 1.   Singapore 1.   Singapore 1.   Singapore
2.   South Korea 2.   Japan 2.   Hong Kong 2.   South Korea
3.   Taiwan 3.   Taiwan 3.   South Korea 3.   Japan
4.   Hong Kong 4.   South Korea 4.   Taiwan 4.   Russia
5.   Japan 5.   Slovenia 5.   Japan 5.   Hong Kong

A Chartered Plane Carrying Passengers Including Brazilian Football Team Crashed in Colombia
i. A chartered plane, carrying 77 people, including a top Brazilian football team, crashed on its approach to the city of Medellin in Colombia late night on November 28, 2016.
ii. The British Aerospace 146 short-haul plane, departed Santa Cruz, Bolivia, carrying members of the Chapecoense team from southern Brazil to play in the final of the Copa Sudamericana, against Medellin team Atletico Nacional which was due to be played on November 30, 2016.A Chartered Plane Carrying Passengers Including Brazilian Football Team Crashed in Colombia
iii .The plane was carrying 68 passengers and nine crew members. 4 other people listed on the flight however did not board the plane. 21 of the passengers were journalists.
iv. Among the passengers, only six were reported to survive including,- Players Alan Ruschel, Marcos Danilo and Jackson Follmann, Two crew members – Ximena Suárez and Erwin Tumiri – and one of the journalist Rafael Valmorbida. However, Danilo died a short time later.
v. The plane was given priority to land but did not reach the airport, according to Alfredo Bocanegra, the head of Colombia’s civil aviation authority.
vi. According to the initial report the aircraft was suffering electrical problems although investigators were also looking into an account from one of the survivors that the plane had run out of fuel about five minutes from its expected landing at Jose Maria Cordova airport outside Medellin.
vii. Brazil’s president Michel Tamer has declared three days of national mourning, and offered support and sympathy to the families of those killed.
viii. Atletico Nacional, which was due to play the team on board, has asked South America’s soccer federation to award the Copa Sudamericana title to Chapecoense in light of the tragedy.

Nepal proposes New Constitution amendment Bill to meet Madhesis demands
i. Nepal’s government registered the new Constitution amendment bill in Parliament on November 29, 2016, aimed at carving out a new state in southern Nepal to meet the demands of agitating Madhesis and other ethnic groups whose protests for bigger federal state last year left more than 50 people dead.
ii. Hridesh Tripati of the Terai Madhes Democratic Party on November 30, 2016 said that it was welcome progress of the government but still inadequate as the new proposal does not cover the districts Madhesi’s have been demanding to be included in Madhesi state.
iii. The Madhesi ethnic groups are unhappy with the constitution that was adopted last year in parliament as they were dissatisfied with the territory assigned to them in the new federal states in the constitution.
iv. Last year the protests lasted for months and left more than 50 people killed and paralyzed southern Nepal. Border points with India were blocked, causing severe shortages of fuel, medicine and other supplies in Nepal.
v. The Madhesi community says they have always been discriminated against, and do not get equal opportunities in government, employment, education and other rights.
vi. Police reported small protests on November 30, 2016 in southwest Nepal opposing the government plans, but there were no reports of violence.
vii. The proposal will be debated in parliament next week. The government needs the support of two-third of parliament to approve the change. The main opposition Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist) has not said yet if it will support the bill, and passing it would be difficult without their support.

BANKING & FINANCE

Public Sector Bank’s Gross NPAs increased nearly Rs 80,000 crore in July-September 2016
i. Public banks have seen an increase of almost Rs. 80,000 Crore in gross non-performing assets (NPAs) in the three months ended September 2016.
ii. On September 30, gross NPAs of public sector banks increased to Rs.6,30,323 crore against Rs. 5,50,346 crore by June end.
iii. This works out to an increase of Rs.79,977 crore on quarter on quarter basis.
iv. Minister of State for Finance Santosh Kumar Gangwar listed measures like enactment of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) and amendment of the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act (SARFAESI) and the Recovery of Debt due to Banks and Financial Institutions (RDDBFI) Act aimed at improving resolution or recovery of bank loans.
v. RBI has come out with a number of tools such as corporate debt restructuring, formation of Joint Lenders’ Forum, strategic debt restructuring scheme and sustainable structuring of stressed assets to fight NPAs.
vi. During the first quarter ended June 2016, public sector banks have written off Rs 15,163 crore loans as against Rs 5,441 crore.
vii. In the the last fiscal, public sector banks had written off Rs 59,547 crore while private peers Rs 12,017 crore.

Mahindra Group, IBM to develop blockchain solution for supply chain finance
i. The Mahindra Group and IBM joined together to develop blockchain solution. It is the Mahindra & IBMfirst projects of its kind in India outside of banking industry
ii. The blockchain solution is cloud-based application which is designed to transform supplier-to-manufacturer trade finance transactions through a permissioned distributed ledger.
iii. This solution will enable all parties involved in the transaction to act on the same shared ledger, with each party updating only their part of the process, ensuring efficiency, consistency, trust and transparency, while safeguarding sensitive information.
What is Blockchain :
♦ A blockchain is a distributed database that maintains a continuously-growing list of records called blocks. Each block contains a timestamp and a link to a previous block.
♦ The first blockchain was conceptualised by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008
♦ ICICI Bank executes India’s first banking transactions on blockchain in partnership with Emirates NBD in October, 2016.

Coal India arm signs pact with SBI Capital markets
i. Central Mine Planning and Design Institute Ltd (CMPDI) the consultancy arm of Coal India Ltd has signed a memorandum of understanding(MoU) with Mumbai based SBI Capital Markets to increase their market share in the rapidly growing consultancy area.
ii. The agreement was signed by Sashi Kant, General Manager, business development, CMPDI and Supriyo Gupta vice-president SBI Capital Markets Ltd on November 30, 2016
iii. The MoU covers areas like providing help for due diligence for the overseas coal and mineral properties for clients, advising bidders in mineral sector and also advising governments for managing mineral sector.
SBI Capital markets :
♦ SBI Capital Markets is an investment bank which is a wholly owned subsidiary and the investment banking arm of State Bank of India.
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai
♦ Founded: August 1986

BUSINESS

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik inaugurates inaugurates Tata Steel’s Gopalpur ferro-chrome plant
i. Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurates the 55,000-tonne per annum (TPA) Odishaferro-chrome plant set up by Tata Steel at a cost of Rs 542 crore in its Gopalpur Industrial Park in Ganjam district.
ii. The plant is a unique environment-friendly unit with state-of-the-art pollution control equipment and technology such as ETP(Effluent Treatment Plant) and STP(Sewage Treatment Plant).
iii. It is the first plant in India to use briquetting method of chrome ore fine agglomeration.

Arunachal Pradesh and Thailand signs MoU to promote cooperation and collaboration.
i. Arunachal Pradesh and Thailand signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on November 29, 2016 for promoting cooperation and collaboration between the states.
ii. The MoU was signed between Surindra Rajabhat University Regional Development Strategies (SRRURDS) Foundation of Surin Province, North East of Thailand and Mahabodhi Lord Buddha College (MLBC) in Arunachal Pradesh.
iii. The MoU aimed at the development of friendly international cooperation with mutual interests in developing programmes of academic exchange and for establishing a long-term mutually beneficial association between the two institutes for fostering cordial relations between the people of Arunachal Pradesh and Thailand.
iv. The MoU was signed by Associate Professor Achara Phanurat, Ex-President of Surindra SRRURDS Foundation and Ven Bhikkhu Panyaloka, Director of MLBC in presence of the Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein and Tharadol Thongruang, Minister Councillor, Royal Thai Embassy, New Delhi.
v. As per the MoU, both the institutes agreed to carry out the activities in academic and research cooperation, cultural activities for international development in educational institutions using international journals, magazines as a stage for academic exchange.

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

Four India-born CEOs on Fortune Businessperson of the Year list 2016
Four leading India-born CEOs have been named in Fortune’s Businessperson of the Year list that is topped by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
The list includes:
1.Microsoft’s Satya Nadella ranked 5th among 50 global corporate heads.
2.CEO of Milwaukee-based maker of water heaters A O Smith Ajita Rajendra on the 34th spot
3.HDFC Bank’s Managing Director Aditya Puri on the 36th position
4.Mastercard’s Ajay Banga on 40th spot.

Sachin Tendulkar’s autobiography “Playing it my way” named Book of the Year
i. Sachin Tendulkar’s autobiography “Playing it my Way” has won the Crossword Book of the Year Award (Autobiography category)Sachin Autobiography
ii. The book is penned by renowned cricket historian and Tendulkar’s close friend Boria Majumdar
iii. Earlier, it also had entered the Limca Book of World Records for being the best selling adult hardback across both fiction and non-fiction categories.
iv. It also holds the record for logging up Rs. 13.51 crore in retail value terms, with its cover price being Rs. 899.

Esquire Magazine named Deepika as International women and Ranveer as International man of the year
i. The sixth Esquire Man at His Best Awards 2016 was held on November 29, 2016 in Dubai. The annual event celebrates the outstanding achievements of men (and a few women) across the Middle East over the past year.
ii. The event was hosted at the JW Marriott Marquis and about 500 guests were welcomed to the Dubai ballroom with a special performance by Musician of the Year, Mo Zowayed.
iii. The program started with an opening speech from Editor-in-Chief of Esquire Magazine Jeremy Lawrence followed by handing over hosting duties to the impecable master-of-ceremonies Tom Urquhart.
iv. The Award comprised of 19 awards. Some of the major awards are:
International Woman of the Year Award: Actress Deepika Padukone
International Man of the Year: Bollywood’s Ranveer Singh
Humanitarian of the Year: Omar Samra
Athlete of the Year: Qatari high-jumper Mutaz Barshim,
Esquire’s Man of the Year: founder of the Mara Group, Ashish J Thakkar.
Esquire is an American men’s magazine, published by the Hearst Corporationin the United States. Founded in 1933, it flourished during the Great Depression under the guidance of founders Arnold Gingrich, David A. Smart and Henry L. Jackson.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Dr Seema Verma, Second Indian-American to be Nominated to top Administration post by President-Elect Trump
i. US President-elect Donald Trump nominated a second Indian-American woman, Dr. Seema Verma to a top administration position on November 29, 2016, as in charge of a federal agency within the health department.Dr Seema Verma, Second Indian-American to be Nominated to top Administration post by President-Elect Trump
ii. Dr Seema Verma, a leading expert in the country on Medicare and Medicaid, will serve as Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Trump has also nominated Congressman Tom Price as his Health and Human Services Secretary.
iii. Before her, Indian-American Nikki Haley was named as US envoy to the United Nations by Mr Trump becoming the first-ever Indian-American to be appointed to a cabinet-level post in any US administration.
iv. Dr Verma currently is the President, CEO and founder of SVC, Inc, a national health policy consulting company.
v. She has working experience of more than 20 years and worked on a variety of policy and strategic projects involving Medicaid, insurance, and public health, working with Governors’ offices, state medicaid agencies, state health departments, state departments of insurance, as well as the federal government, private companies and foundations.
vi. Dr Verma received her Master’s degree in Public Health, with a concentration in health policy and management from Johns Hopkins University, and her Bachelor’s degree in Life Sciences from the University of Maryland.

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Israel Scientists Creates World’s First “Water-Wave Laser”
i. Scientists in Israel has developed the world’s first “water-wave laser,” that generates laser radiation through the interaction between light and water waves.
ii. The study conducted by Technion-Israel Institute of Technology is the first bridge between two areas of research that were previously considered unrelated to one another: nonlinear optics and water waves.
iii. A typical laser can be created when the electrons in atoms become “excited” by energy absorbed from an outside source, causing them to emit radiation in the form of laser light.
iv. Researchers, led by Professor Tal Carmon, showed for the first time that water wave oscillations within a liquid device can also generate laser radiation.
v. The light and water waves intersect more than a million times inside the droplet, producing the energy necessary to trigger a water-wave laser.
vi. Ultimately, the technology could be used to create tiny sensors for the study of cell First Water-Wave Laserbiology or to test new drugs. For now, scientists can use the laser to study light-fluid interactions at a small scale.
Israel:
♦ Capital: Jerusalem
♦ Currency: Israeli new shekel
♦ President: Reuven Rivlin
♦ Prime Minister: Benjamin Netanyahu

CBSE launches portal ‘Parinam Manjusha’for easy access to academic documents
i. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) chairman R K Chaturvedi has launched its digital portal named ‘Parinam Manjusha’ to provide easier access to academic documents online
ii. The portal was developed by the board in collaboration with NEGD (DigiLocker).
iii. Students can find their marksheets, pass certificates, and migration certificates from this portal.
iv. Educational institutes have to first register on Parinam Manjusha and get verified by the board to access this portal

ENVIRONMENT

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef Recorded worst coral die-off
i. Australian Scientists on November 29, 2016 revealed that Great Barrier Reef suffered its worst coral die-off ever recorded.
ii. The report stated that warm seas around Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in less accessible north have lost two-thirds of a 700-km (435 miles) stretch of coral in the past nine months.
iii. The reef suffered its most severe bleaching in recorded history, due to warming sea temperatures during March 2016 and April 2016.
iv. Bleaching occurs when abnormal environmental conditions, such as warmer sea temperatures, cause corals to expel tiny photosynthetic algae, which in turn drain them of their colour.
v. There is a minimal damage in the central and southern regions, including major tourist areas around Cairns and the Whitsunday Islands, of the reef.
vi. Scientists estimate that the northern region will take at least 10-15 years to regain lost corals. However, they are also are concerned that a fourth major bleaching event may occur before that, which will impede the recovery.
The Great Barrier Reef
♦ It is the world’s largest coral reef system located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, Australia and composed of over 2900 individual reefs and 900 islands.
♦ The reef is so vast that it can be seen from outer space. In 1981, it was selected as a World Heritage Site.
♦ A large part of the reef is protected by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, which helps to limit the impact of human use.

SPORTS

IAAF launches online portal to report doping
i. International Association of Athletics Federations has launched an online portal for reporting suspicions of doping.
ii. The secure portal on its home page is available in six languages and offers full confidentiality.
iii. Information submitted and transmitted via secure networks and is completely anonymous.

Kohli continues surge towards top with career-best third rank in Tests
i. Virat Kohli has moved up to a career-best third spot in the latest MRF Tyres ICC Player Rankings for Test Batsmen after coming up with a useful contribution in his team’s eight-wicket win over England in the third Test in Mohali.
ii. He scored 62 and six not out to move to 833 points, within 14 points of England’s Joe Root in a list led by Australia captain Steve Smith.
iii. Starting the series in 15th position, Kohli has risen at a fast pace scoring 405 runs in the three Tests against England.

Hashim Mansoor of Kashmir won Asian Youth Karate Championships
i. Seven-year-old Hashim Mansoor from Kashmir’s Bandipora district has won a gold medal at the Asian Youth Karate Championships, being held at New Delhi.Hashim Mansoor of Kashmir won Asian Youth Karate Championships
ii. He clinched the gold in the three day championship in the sub-junior category (below 25kg) after defeating his competitors from Bhutan and Malaysia in the first two rounds and his Sri Lankan opponent in the final on November 29, 2016.
iii. Mansoor, after this win has now qualified for the World Championship, to be held next year in September. Hashim Mansoor credited his victory to the hard work of his coach Fasil Ali Dar.
iv. Participants from 19 countries took part in the tournament organised by the All India Youth Karate Federation.
v. Earlier, eight-year-old Tajamul Islam had become India’s first player to clinch a gold in the sub-junior category at the World Kick-boxing Championships.
vi. The Asian Karate Championships are the highest level of competition for sport karate in Asia. The competition is held in a different country every two years organized by the Asian Karatedo Federation(AKF) under the supervision of World Karate Federation.