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British Prime Minister Theresa May Visit to India – An Overview
i. British Prime Minister Theresa May arrived in Delhi on a three-day visit(November 6-8, 2016) aimed at enhancing Indo-UK ties in the key areas of trade, investment, defense and security.
ii. May and Prime Minister Narendra Modi witnessed the signing of the two Memorandums of Understanding – one on intellectual property (IP) and another for bilateral cooperation on raising ease of doing business.
iii. India and the United Kingdom have agreed to enhance defence ties with a view to expanding military trade and industrial collaboration.
iv. It is noted that the two countries have agreed to “encourage and facilitate” opportunities under New Delhi’s ‘Make in India’ campaign, which seeks to encourage co-operation between defence exporters and Indian industry.
MSDE Announces Launch Of Pradhan Mantri Yuva Yojana
i. Minister of State(I/C) for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Shri Rajiv Pratap Rudy, launched the Pradhan Mantri YUVA Yojana, MSDE’s flagship scheme on entrepreneurship education and training, marking the 2nd Foundation Day of Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship
ii. The scheme spans over five years (2016-17 to 2020-21) with a project cost of Rs. 499.94 crore, and will provide entrepreneurship education and training to over 7 lakh students in 5 years through 3050 Institutes.
iii. The institutes under the PM’s YUVA Yojana include 2200 Institutes of Higher Learning (colleges, universities, and premier institutes), 300 schools, 500 ITIs and 50 Entrepreneurship Development Centres, through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).
iv. MSDE also unveiled the Lab Guidelines towards standardisation of lab equipment across skill development training centres in India at the conference.
‘Kahin Bhi-Kabhi Bhi’ medical facilities launched for ESIC beneficiaries
i. Shri Bandaru Dattatreya, the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Labor and Employment launched the ‘Kahin-Bhi-Kabhi-Bhi’ medical facilities for The Employees’ StateInsurance Corporation (ESIC) beneficiaries of Delhi and Inaugurated the 6 bedded Day Care Unit’ of ESI Dispensary on November 8 at Dwarka.
ii. This makes ESIC dispensaries a complete medical unit with facilities like OPD care, family welfare services, full-time laboratory and X-ray and diagnostic care enabling the beneficiaries and their families to visit the day care centre for minor disorder instead of going to ESIC hospitals.
iii. In future Day Care Centres will also be developed at 3 more ESIC dispensaries in Delhi at Nandnagari, Mangolpuri and Jwalapuri and 6-bedded day care centers at various ESI dispensaries all over the country.
iv. At the same time all the 4 ESIC Hospitals of Delhi at Basaidarapur, Rohini, Okhla and Jhilmil will also be converted into super specialty hospital.
Ministry of AYUSH Inaugurates 9th Annual Meeting of International Regulatory Cooperation for Herbal Medicines (IRCH)
i. The Ministry of AYUSH has organized the 9th Annual Meeting of International Regulatory Cooperation for Herbal Medicines (IRCH) from 8-10 November, 2016 which was inaugurated by Minister of State for AYUSH Shri Sripad Yesso Naik at Ashoka Hotel in New Delhi.
ii. About 36 delegates from 19 countries including experts from WHO and Geneva attended the meeting.
iii. India has signed 6 MoUs with other countries over the last two years for improving collaboration in the field of traditional medicine.
iv. The goal of the meeting is to promote and facilitate the proper use of herbal medicines globally and strengthen cooperation between national regulatory authorities by sharing knowledge, experience and information about the quality, safety and efficacy of herbal medicines.
♦ International Regulatory Cooperation for Herbal Medicines (IRCH), was established in 2006.
♦ It is a global network of regulatory authorities created by World Health Organization (WHO).
♦ IRCH is responsible for regulation of herbal medicines and protect and promote public health and safety through proper regulation of herbal medicines.
Tamil Nadu Government Enhanced Maternity Leave From 6 to 9 Months
i. Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa announced increasing motherhood leave period for women government employees from six to nine months, the state government issued an order to implement it.
ii. A Government Order (GO) of the Personnel and Administrative Reforms Department remembered that Jayalalithaa had made an announcement in the Tamil Nadu Assembly in September, promising to increase the leave period from the existing six months or 180 days to 270 days.
iii .The maternity leave might be arrange from the “pre-confinement rest to post-confinement recovery, at the option of the women Government servant, the order added those under maternity leave at present are also eligible for 270 days of leave.
iv. Necessary changes to the Fundamental Rules would be issued separately, it added. Woman employees “with less than two surviving children”, were eligible for the 9-month maternity leave with full pay.
China to block India’s bid for NSG membership
i. China once again blocked India’s effort to join NSG in a meeting in Seoul on November 4 2016. Out of 48 members of NSG 47 supported India except China.
ii. China wants India to sign the non-Nuclear Proliferation Treaty (NPT) first before joining the NSG.
iii. NSG membership will be a significant step to boost India’s which atomic energy sector
iv. Besides, India’s clean track record will get recognition in nuclear non-proliferation without being signatory of non-Nuclear Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
v. NSG is a group of countries which are concerned with reducing nuclear proliferation by controlling the export and re-transfer of materials that may be used for development of nuclear weapons.
♦ Capital :Beijing
BANKING & FINANCE
Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 Currency no longer Legal Tender
i. Honorable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi while addressing the nation on November 8 2016, made a historical announcement that the Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 currency notes currently in use will no longer be legal tender from midnight 8th November 2016 that is these notes will not be accepted for any kind of transactions from midnight onwards.
ii. The aim behind such move is to curb corruption, black money, money laundering, terrorism creating an environment of panic.
iii. However one hundred, fifty, twenty, ten, five, two and one rupee note will remain legal tender and will not be affected by the decision.
iv. On recommendation of RBI, government of India has decided to issue Rs. 2000 notes and new notes of five hundred for circulation.
Standard Chartered Bank launched ‘Unified Payments Interface’ (UPI) Solution
i. Standard Chartered Bank launched ‘Unified Payments Interface’ (UPI) solution on 8th November 2016 for its corporate and financial institutional and commercial banking customers.
ii. This UPI solution will enable clients to send and receive money through a Virtual Payment Address without entering additional bank account details.
iii. UPI enables real time ‘push and pull’ of funds, making the payment process easier for end customers. Installing UPI app the clients can send request for collection and payment of funds.
iv. Standard Chartered is a U.K based banking and financial services company headquartered at London.
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
39th Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation Award conferred
i. The 39th Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation Award was awarded on 7 November 2016 in Mumbai, Maharastra.This year, the receivers of the award were Mohan Hirabai Hiralal and BonBehari Vishnu Nimbkar from Maharashtra, Dr. Nannapaneni Manga Devi from Andhra Pradesh and Sheikh Rached Ghannouchi from Tunisia.
ii. The four winners were felicitated for their work in the fields of constructive work, application of science & technology for rural development, development and welfare of women and children and international award for promoting Gandhian values outside India.
iii. Dr. Justice CS Dharmadhikari (Retd.), Chairman, Council of Advisors of the Foundation was the chief guest at the event.
Professor Raj Bisaria to get Madhya Pradesh government govt’s Kalidas Samman
i. Famous theatre personality and Padma Shri, Prof Raj Bisaria is all set to proud of his achievement with the Madhya Pradesh government honouring him with its prestigious ‘Kalidas Samman’ national award for 2015-16 for achievement in theatre. The ceremony would be held in Ujjain, which is also the birthday of the 80 year old.
ii. The annual award constituted in 1980 awards personalities in the four fields of classical dance, classical music, theatre and plastic arts.
iii. Raj Bisaria was born on November 10, 1935. He is an Indian director, producer, actor and educationalist, described by the Press Trust of Indiaas “the father of the modern theatre in North India”.
iv. He founded Theatre Arts Workshop in 1966, and Bhartendu Academy of Dramatic Arts in 1975 and the repertory company of Bhartendu Academy of Dramatic Arts in 1980. He has blended artistic concepts of the East and the West, and the traditional and the modern.
The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee presented IGNITE Awards
i. The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee awarded the Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam IGNITE Awards to the winners of IGNITE competition, organized by the National Innovation Foundation (NIF), on November 7, 2016 at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
ii. About 55,000 applicants from 458 districts of the country participated in the competition out of which 31 students were awarded for the innovative ideas.
♦ It is a national level competition organized every year by National Innovation Foundation (NIF) to promote creativity, innovation, original ideas among children up to class 12 and for those who are passed out upto the age of 17 years.
♦ The award was started in 2008 and is presented every year on 15th October on Dr APJ Abdul Kalam’s birthday, which is celebrated by NIF as Children’s Creativity and Innovation Day.
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Donald Trump elected as America’s New President
i. The United States presidential election of 2016, held on November 8, 2016, was the 58th U.S. presidential election. Donald Trump the Republican nominee defeated the Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump, age 70, became the oldest person ever to be elected as president. He was born in 1946.
ii. Trump will assume the office as the 45th President from January 20, 2017.
iii. Mr. Trump defeated Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton who would have been the country’s first woman President in its 240-year history succeeding Barack Obama, the first African-American President of the U.S.
Vani Venkatesh, Bharti Airtel new CEO-Retail
i. Bharti Airtel Ltd appointment Vani Venkatesh as the new chief executive for Airtel Retail on 8th November 2016. She will succeed Rohit Malhotra.
ii. Venkatesh will be responsible for driving Airtel’s retail strategy to deliver a seamless customer experience across retail touch point.
iii. She started her career with Hindustan Unilever, and also worked with McKinsey & Co. and Abbott Healthcare and has over 19 years of working experience.
iv. Bharti Airtel is Indias largest telecommunication service provider and operates in about 18 countries across Asia and Africa.
S Gopakumar Appointed MD Of GIC Housing Finance
i. GIC Housing Finance announced that the S. Gopakumar, general manager with Oriental Insurance Company, has been appointed as Managing Director of the company.
ii. Warendra Sinha resigned as Managing Director and CEO of GIC Housing Finance following his advancement as whole time director of National Insurance Company.
iii. He resigned following a result to the orders of the Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance elevating him as a General Manager and Whole Time Director of National Insurance Company Ltd, GIC Housing Finance said in a regulatory filing to stock exchanges.
Lt Gen DevrajAnbu New Chief Of Northern Command
i. Lieutenant General, DevrajAnbu is probably to replace the incumbent Lt Gen D S Hooda, as new GOC–in Chief of Northern Command.
ii. The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi removed the name of Lt General Anbu for the post of the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief (GOC-in-C) with effect from December.
iii. The Udhampur-based Northern Command is a strategically important Army formation which views the functioning of the Srinagar-based 15 Corps, Jammu-based 16 Corps and Leh-based 14 Corps.
iv. He has participated in Indian Peace Keeping Operations (IPKF) in Sri Lanka, United Nations Peace Keeping in Namibia, Counter Insurgency and Counter Terrorist operations in Manipur and Jammu and Kashmir.
ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
Tesla bought German automation firm Grohmann
i. In the middle of seeking investor approval for a merger with SolarCity Corp., Tesla made an announcement that it’s receiving a small German engineering firm to help automate and accelerate production at its factories.
ii. Several critical elements of Tesla’s automated manufacturing systems will be designed and produced” in Pruem, Rhineland-Palatinate state, the California-based firm.
iii. Tesla planned to add an additional 1,000 engineering and technician jobs in Germany, on top of Grohmann’s existing 700 employees, over the next two years as the company looks to aggressively increase electrical vehicle production at its Fremont, California factory.
iv. Tesla Motors is an American automaker and energy storage company co-founded by Martin Eberhard, Marc Tarpenning, JB Straubel, Elon Musk and Ian Wright, and is based in Palo Alto, California. The company specializes in electric cars and their powe rtrain components and also produces battery charging equipment
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Airborne lasers to throw light on Rajgir’s history
i. Archaeologists in India are planning to use exclusively high-end scanning lasers on airborne platforms to conduct survey of the archaeological evidence, flora and fauna in the Rajgir hills, Bihar under the Rajgir Archaeological Survey Project (RASP).
ii. As part of the project, Archaeologists have planned to use Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR), which is a remote-sensing technique that makes use of laser light to sample the earth’s surface.
iii. RASP is a joint-effort of the Society and Nalanda University in co-ordination with Bihar’s Ministry of Art, Culture and Youth.
iv. Rajgir is a city in Bihar’s Nalanda district famous for its temples and monasteries and highly known to be associated with Lord Buddha and Buddhism.
6 World’s first light-seeking synthetic nanorobot developed
i. A team of researchers headed by Dr.Jinyao Tang of the Department of Chemistry, the University of Hong Kong, has developed the world’s first light-seeking synthetic Nano robot.
ii. With size comparable to a blood cell, those tiny robots have the potential to be injected into patients’ bodies, helping surgeons to remove tumors and enabling more precise engineering of targeted treatment. The findings have been published in October earlier in leading scientific journal Nature Nanotechnology.
iii. The tiny robots can fundamentally change our daily life. The famous science fiction movie “Fantastic Voyage” is a very good example, with a group of scientists driving their miniaturized Nano-submarine inside human body to repair a damaged brain.
iv. In the film “Terminator 2”, billions of Nanorobots were assembled into the amazing shape shifting body: the T-1000. In the real world, it is quite challenging to make and design a sophisticated Nano robot with advanced functions.
Delhi Govt Launched HPV Vaccination ProgTo Combat Cervical
i. Delhi has become the first state in the country to launch ‘Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination’ as a public health programme for preventing cervical cancer among young girls.
ii. As part of the programme, girls aged between 11-13 years would be vaccinated
free of cost at Delhi State Cancer Institute (DSCI) through its setups in east and west Delhi.
iii. Delhi Health Minister Satyendra Jain launched the vaccination programme on the introductory day of the International Workshop for Cancer Awareness in Delhi.
iv. The HPV vaccination programme will target girls between the age of 9 and 13 next year. “This year we are focused on vaccinating girls Class VI girl students .
Scientists detected water on metallic asteroid Psyche
i. Scientists have indicated the presence of water on Psyche, the largest metallic asteroid in our solar system and the target of a proposed NASAmission.
ii. Previous observations of Psychehad shown no evidence of water-rich minerals on its surface. However, new observations from the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility in Hawaii show evidence of water or hydroxyl on its surface.
iii. Psyche is a proposed orbiter mission concept to explore the origin of planetary cores by studying the metallic asteroid 16 Psyche. This asteroid may be the exposed iron core of a protoplanet, likely the remnant of a violent collision with another object that stripped off the outer crust.
iv. Lindy Elkins-Tanton of Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona is the Principal Investigator, who proposed this mission to NASA’s Discovery Program. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory would manage the project.
The global climate 2011-2015: hot and wild reported WMO
i. The year 2015 made history, with exhausted temperature records, intense heatwaves, unusual rainfall, destructing drought and unusual tropical cyclone activity, according to the World Meteorological Organization. That record-breaking trend has continued in 2016.
ii. The record temperatures were accompanied by rising sea levels and decrease in Arctic sea-ice extent, continental glaciers and northern hemisphere snow cover, the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
iii. This report confirms that the average temperature in 2015 had already reached the 1 degree-Celsius mark. We just had the hottest five-year period on record, with 2015 declaring the title of hottest individual year announced by WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.
iv. The global average surface temperature in 2015 broke all previous records by a wide marging, at about 0.76° Celsius above the 1961-1990 average because of a powerful El Niño and human-caused global warming. With 93% of excess heat stored in the oceans, ocean heat content down to 2 000 meters also hit a new record.
♦ Membership : 191 Member
♦ Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland
♦ Head: Petteri Taalas
♦ Formation: 1950
BOOKS & AUTHORS
President of India to receive a copy of book CHARAIVETI, CHARAIVETI
i. The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee will receive the first copy of book CHARAIVETI, CHARAIVETI from the Vice President of India, Shri Mohd Hamid Ansari who will formally release it at a function to be held at Rashtrapati Bhavan
ii. The title is both emotional and philosophical. From our ancient ethos of continuous change to Buddha’s philosophy of Charaiveti, to Gurudev’s call of EklaChalo, the philosophy of eternal and continuous change is reflected in everybody’s life as stagnation leads to death and walking ahead is life.
iii. He played an instrumental role in introducing the practice of singing of “Jana gana mana” and “VandeMatram” on the opening and closing days of every Session of Parliament.
iv. Among the other delegates present on the occasion were Smt. Sumitra Mahajan, Speaker Lok Sabha, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, Union Minister and Shri Sharad Pawar, MP (Rajya Sabha).