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Current Affairs Today – October 28 2016

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New Zealand PM John Key visit to India – An Overview
i. At the invitation of Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, John Key, Prime Minister of New Zealand, undertook a state visit to India from 25-27 October, 2016
ii. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi and both leaders will discuss ways to further strengthen the bilateral relations
iii. India and New Zealand have signed three agreements in the areas of double taxation avoidance, food security and sports.
iv. India and New Zealand agreed to strengthen ties in key areas of trade, defence and security

Life expectancy highest in Jammu and Kashmir : RGI Data
i. According to the data given by the Registrar General of India (RGI), Jammu and Kashmir has surpassed Kerala as the state with the highest life expectancy in India for all ages, barring life expectancy at birth.
ii. The data prepared following surveys done between 2010 and 2014, Kerala used to be the leader in life expectancy in almost all categories of age till 2010.
iii. The RGI last week published state level life expectancy defined as the estimate of the average number of additional years that a person of a given age can expect to live data for different ages: 0 (at birth), 1, 5, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 and 70.
iv. Kerala has highest overall life expectancy at birth at 74.9 years, 72 for men and 77.8 for women , followed by Delhi and Jammu & Kashmir
Points to Know :
♦ India’s statistical system does not produce life expectancy numbers on 15 small states and Union Territories such as Arunachal Pradesh, Lakshadweep and confined only to 21 bigger states and UTs.
♦ The Census organisation functions under the Ministry of Home Affairs of the Government of India.

Himachal Pradesh declared India’s Second Open Defecation Free State 
i. After Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh became Open Defecation Free (ODF) state said by Chief minister Virbhadra Singh on October 29, 2016
ii. The hill state of Himachal has become the first large state has successfully achieved a total rural sanitation coverage of 100 per cent in the state in it’s all 12 districts.
iii. Virbhadra Singh also wished to launch a joint programme with the state to mitigate water borne diseases in near future.
Himachal Pradesh :
♦ The Legislative Assembly of Himachal Pradesh has no pre-Constitution history
♦ Mandi is one of the districts in Himachal Pradesh.It is known as Chhota Kashi bacause of large number of pilgramage sites located in the district.
♦ Lahaul and Spiti is the largest district .

UP removes age limit for widows, divorced women in govt jobs
i. Uttar Pradesh CM Akhilesh Yadav announced to remove upper age limit for widows and divorced women who are all applying for government jobs.
ii. The age limit for government exam is-
In general the maximum age limit for Non-Gazetted Posts is 28 years and for Gazetted Posts upper age limit is 26 years
iii. The upper age relaxation is available in case of the following categories:
1.OBC : 3years
2.SC/ST : 5 years
3.Physically Handicapped : 10years
4.State Government Employees : 5 years
5.Ex-service Men : 3years
6.N.C.C : 3 years
7.Widows, Divorced Women upper age limit should not exceed 40 years for SC/ST and 35 years for OBC

Union Home Minister lays the foundation stone of Pt. Deen Dayal Upadhyay Institute of Archaeology at Greater Noida
i. The Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has laid the foundation stone of National  Institute of Archaeology at Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh
ii. The Union government named the National Archaeology Institute in the name of Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyay is a tribute to the social reformer as the nation celebrates his 100th Birth Anniversary .
iii. Recently government appointed 23- member Executive Committee to commemorate the Union Home Minister lays the foundation stone of Pt. Deen Dayal Upadhyay Institute of Archaeology at Greater Noidabirth centenary of Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay.Rajnath Singh is the chairman of that committee.
Greater Noida :
♦ Greater Noida is located in the Gautam Budh Nagar district in Uttar Pradesh.
♦ It is a part of the National Capital Region (NCR).
♦ Taj International Airport is located in this city

Union Cabinet gives ex-post facto approval to IISER in Odisha
i. Union Cabinet given its ex-post facto approval  on October 27, 2016 to formation of the Indian Institute of Science Education & Research (IISER) at Berhampur in Odisha under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.
ii. The cabinet approved setting up and operationalisation of the institute in a transit/temporary campus from academic year 2016-17 for initial three years (2016-19), involving a cost of Rs 152.79 crore.
iii. The cabinet also approved accepting land from the Odisha government for the institute and cleared creation of post of director of the institute in the pay scale of Rs.80,000 .
iv. The introduction of National Institutes of Technology, Science Education and Research (Second Amendment) Bill, 2016 approved to introduce in the parliament for inclusion of the IISER at Tirupati and Berhampur in the second schedule of National Institutes of Technology, Science Education and Research (NITSER) Act, 2007.

Cabinet approves agreement between India, Estonia on transfer of sentenced persons
i. The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given its approval for signing and ratification of an agreement between India and Estonia on the transfer of sentenced persons.
ii. The Repatriation of Prisoners Act 2003, was enacted for serving the below purpose.
1.This agreement facilitate the Indian prisoners imprisoned in Estonia or vice-versa to be near to their families for serving remaining part of their sentence
2.The transfer of such prisoners to their own native countries shall facilitate their social rehabilitation.
iii. India has signed bilateral agreements with the following countries:
United Kingdom, Mauritius, Bulgaria, France, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Bangladesh, Brazil, Israel, Bosnia & Herzegovina, UAE, Italy, Turkey, Maldives, Thailand, Russian Federation, Kuwait, Viet Nam, Australia, Hong Kong, Qatar, Mongolia, Kazakhstan and Bahrain.
Estonia :
♦ Capital: Tallinn
♦ Currency: Euro
♦ President: Kersti Kaljulaid

Government launches International Household Survey Network Toolkit
First Workshop on the use of IHSN Toolkit was inagurated by D.V. Sadananda Gowda,  Minister for Statistics and Programme Implementation in New Delhi.He  also launched the new Website of the Ministry.
International Household Survey Network (IHSN) toolkit :
i. IHSN – Micro data Management Toolkit developed by the World Bank Data, Asian Development Bank, ADP (Accelerated Data Program), OECD (Organisation of Economic Corporation and Development & PARIS21
ii. It is designed to address the technical issues facing data producers.
iii. It is consists of 3 components.
1.Metadata Editor– Allows the user to add survey metadata and create the ddi.xml and as Nesstar study document.
2.CD-ROM Builder – Allows the user to generate HTML output from the study that can be published on a CD or the Internet for dissemination.3.NADA– Search engine that allows the user to import the ddi.xml and search for variables and view metadata.


India ranks 133 in Global Youth Development Index compiled by Commonwealth Secretariat
i. India has ranked 133 out of 183 countries in 2016 Global Youth Development Index compiled by the Commonwealth Secretariat. It has registered an impressive improvement of nearly 11 per cent in its youth development scores in the period between 2010 and 2015
ii. Top 5 Countries : Germnay, Denmark, Switzerland, Australia and UK
iii. Other Neighbouring countries : Nepal (77), Bhutan (69) and Sri Lanka (31)
iv. India’s overall rank is relatively low but it has registered an impressive improvement of nearly 11 per cent in its youth development scores in the period between 2010 and 2015.

Tagore Memorial Library Resource Centre inaugurated in Horana Sri Palee College, Sri Lanka
i. Mr. Y.K. Sinha, High Commissioner of India inaugurated the Rabindranath Tagore Memorial Library and Resource Centre in Sri Palee College at Horana in Sri Lanka on October 28, 2016.
ii. It is renovated by the Government of India at a total cost of SLR 38 million. It has also built an audio-visual lab, improved the external landscape and built approach roads inside the school premises.
Tagore Memorial Library Resource Centreiii. The project will provide a conducive learning environment for the students of Sri Palee College, as well as a reading space for the people who visit the College.
Sri Lanka :
♦ Capitals: Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, Colombo
♦ Currency: Sri Lankan rupee
♦ Prime minister: Ranil Wickremesinghe
♦ President: Maithripala Sirisena


GSTN signs MoU with DGFT for sharing of foreign exchange realisation data 
i. The Goods and Services Network (GSTN) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) for sharing of foreign exchange realisation and Import Export code data.
ii. The MoU was signed by Shri Ajay K Bhalla, Director General of Foreign Trade and Shri Prakash Kumar, CEO of GSTN .
iii. An electronic bank realisation certificate (eBRC) captures transaction level details of foreign exchange realised in India. The eBRC project implemented by DGFT
iv. eBRC data has proved to be a significant step in reducing the transaction cost of exporters.
v. DGFT has signed MOUs with 14 state governments and 2 central government agencies for sharing of the data.

RBI allows start-ups to raise $3 million through ECBs
i. Reserve Bank of India (RBI) issued rules permitting these to raise External Commercial Borrowings (ECBs) per start-up was capped at $3 million per financial year to support financing for start-upsRBI
ii. The borrowing could be either in rupees or a convertible foreign currency or a combination of both.The money could be used for any expenditure of the borrower’s business.
iii. Startups can tap lenders and investors only from countries that are members of the Financial Action Task Force.
iv. RBI also advised start-ups raising money through ECB to have a risk-management policy as these would be exposed to currency risks because of exchange-rate movements.
External Commercial Borrowings :
An external commercial borrowing(ECB) is an instrument used in India to facilitate the access to foreign money by Indian corporations and PSUs


RIL gets world’s 1st very large ethane-carrying ships
i. Reliance Industries Ltd has received the delivery of world’s first very large ethane carrying ships Very Large Ethane Carriers (VLECs) from Samsung Heavy Industries’ shipyards in Korea.
ii. RIL inaugurated its very first two VLECs named Ethane Crystal and Ethane Emerald which are the first in a series of six VLECs ordered by RIL in 2014.
iii. It’s capacity is  87,000 cubic meters and it will be used for ferrying the fuel from the US.
iv. Japan’s biggest shipping company Mitsui OSK Lines will manage and operate the ships for RIL.
About Ethane :
♦ Ethane is an organic chemical compound with chemical formula C₂H₆.It is a colorless, odorless gas.
♦ It has generated an abundance of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and cooking gas LPG.


2 Yazidi women, Nadia Murad and Lamiya Aji Bashar win EU human rights prize
i. Nadia Murad and Lamiya Aji Bashar, two young Iraqis who escaped sexual slavery by the Islamic State and became advocates for women’s rights were honored with the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, the European Union’s top human rights award.
EU human rights prizeii. Ms.Murad and Ms.Aji Bashar are among thousands of women and girls from the Yazidi community whom the terrorist group kidnapped, sexually assaulted, enslaved and in many cases killed.
iii. Ms.Murad  created a global campaign to draw attention to the plight of Yazidis who are being held in sexual slavery or remain displaced.
iv. She was named a United Nations good-will ambassador last month on behalf of victims of human trafficking and she was awarded the Vaclav Havel Human Rights Prize.


Ananthakrishna retires from Karnataka Bank
i. Karnataka Bank extended a warm felicitation to Ananthakrishna, non-Executive Chairman of the Bank, on his retirement.
ii. Mr. Ananthakrishna was associated with the bank for over 45 years in various capacities and retired on attaining the age of 70.

Karnal Singh appointed as chief of Enforcement Directorate
Karnal Singh appointed as chief of Enforcement Directoratei. Karnal Singh is a 1984 batch IPS officer of Union territories cadre, appointed chief of Enforcement Directorate, the agency entrusted with probing money laundering cases.
ii. The appointments committee of cabinet has approved the appointment of Singh as director, Enforcement Directorate (ED) till August 31, 2017.
iii. Mr.Singh, is holding the additional charge of ED chief since August last year and He is at present special director in the ED.


Sun Pharma buys eye care specialist Ocular Tech for $40m
i. The country’s largest pharma company Sun Pharma acquired 100 per cent equity in the US-based eye care specialist Ocular Technologies.
ii. It bought the Ocular Tech owned by the private equity firm Auven Therapeutics, for a front payment of $40 million.
iii. Currently, Ocular is developing Seciera for treating dry eye disease.


Dr. Jitendra Singh launches Employees Online (EO) Mobile App of DoPT 
The Employees Online (EO) App launched by Dr.Jitendra Singh, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space.
About EO App :
i. EO App is a mobile application of the Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT), Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.
ii. The appl is updated on real time basis with appointments and postings approved by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) and vacancies at senior level.
iii. It also empowers the IAS officers on Pan India basis and officers serving under Central Staffing Scheme by providing their personal records like Annual Performance Appraisal Report (APAR), Immovable Property Return (IPR), Executive Record (ER) sheet through secured NIC login Id and Password.


Ross Sea: World’s largest marine protected area declared in Antarctica
Ross Sea: World's largest marine protected area declared in Antarcticai. Delegates from 24 countries and the European Union have agreed that the Ross Sea in Antarctica will become the world’s largest Marine Protected Area (MPA).
ii. Some 1.57m sq km (600,000 sq miles) of the Southern Ocean will gain protection from commercial fishing for 35 years.
iii. This is the first large scale MPA on the high seas.

Two-thirds of wild animals may go extinct by 2020, warns report
i. Global wildlife populations have fallen by 58 per cent since 1970, a report by the Living Planet assessment by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) 
ii. It suggests that if the trend continues that decline could reach two-thirds among vertebrates by 2020.
iii. The figures suggest that animals living in lakes, rivers and wetlands are suffering the biggest losses.


WADA report highlights ‘serious failings’ at Rio Olympic Games
i. A WADA report on the anti-doping methods employed at Rio 2016 has highlighted “serious failings”.
ii. The World Anti-Doping Agency said many athletes who had been targeted for testing “simply could not be found”.
iii. According to its 55-page Independent Observers report, of the 11,470 athletes, 4,125 had no record of any testing in 2016, of whom 1,913 were competing in 10 “higher-risk sports”.
iv. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is ultimately responsible for delivering the anti-doping programme for the Olympic Games.

Punjab wins 2016 NCC National Games
Punjab wins NCC National Gamesi. (IANS) Punjab Directorate became champions in the National Cadet Corp (NCC) National Games.
ii. Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre presented trophies to the winners at the closing ceremony at Delhi Cantonment
iii. The theme of the closing ceremony was “Vibrant India”.

Government Recognizes Boxing Federation of India as National Sports Federation for Boxing 
i. Government has recognized Boxing Federation of India (BFI) as the National Sports Federation (NSF) for Boxing.
ii The step will give a boost to the sport of boxing which suffered due to absence of an NSF in the discipline since 2012.
iii. AIBA, the International Body for boxing, recognized the newly elected office bearers of BFI and the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports decided to grant recognition to BFI as NSF for boxing.
iv. BFI will help Indian boxers prepare for 2020 Olympics with more national & international exposure, and training.


World’s Oldest Royal, Prince Mikasa of Japan, Dies at 100
worlds-oldest-royal-prince-mikasa-of-japan-dies-at-100i. Prince Mikasa, an Imperial Army veteran who turned pacifist and reigned during World War II, died in Tokyo.
ii. He was the uncle of the current emperor, Akihito. He was 100.
iii. He was the first Japanese royal to become a professor, and to get a driver’s license.

Goa’s first woman CM Shashikala Kakodkar passes away
i. Goa’s first woman chief minister Shashikala Kakodar passed away after a brief illness. She was 81.
ii. A prominent leader of the Maharashtrwadi Gomantak Party, Kakodkar was the daughter of Goa’s first chief minister Dayanand Bandodkar.


National Ayurveda Day – October 28
i. National Ayurveda Day observed on October 28 across the country by the Ministry of AYUSH.ii. It organized a one day National Seminar on ‘’Prevention and Control of Diabetes through Ayurveda’’ on 28th October 2016 at New Delhi. 
iii. Dr.Jitender Singh inaugurated the seminar and Minister of AYUSH (IC) Shri Shripad Yesso Naik presided over the programme.
iv. The Ministry of AYUSH launches “Mission Madhumeha through Ayurveda” on the occasion.
v. It will be implemented throughout the country through a specially designed National Treatment Protocol for effective management of Diabetes through Ayurveda
vi. 2016 Theme : Ayurveda for Prevention and Control of Diabetes.