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Current Affairs Today – October 9 2016

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Five-day long Durga Puja festival began in Nagaland
i. The five-day long Durga Puja was celebrated by the Hindu community throughout the state of Nagaland
ii. The Puja celebration began with Sasthi Puja, followed by Mahasaptami,Mahaashtami, Mahanavami, and the Bijaya Dashami, when the celebration would culminate.
iii. It was followed by some rituals including unveiling the face of the deity. Durga Puja – the ceremonial worship of the mother goddess, is one of the most important festivals of India.
iv. There were over 14 Durga Puja pendals in and around Kohima, where Puja would be performed.The President of the Durgabari of Kohima, Subhash Bhattacharjee and General Secretary, N.C. Tiwari, in a release, had  invited all well-wishers to come to visit the Durgabari and informed that there would be cultural programme for all communities in the Puja pandals.

Fadnavis Launched International Arbitration Centre In Mumbai
i. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis  launched the Mumbai Centre for International Arbitration (MCIA), spread over 7,000 square feet at Nariman Point in south Mumbai.
ii. The Mumbai Centre is an integral part of the proposed International Financial Services Centre (IFSC). It would have seven arbitration hearing rooms for the resolution of commercial disputes.Fadnavis Launched International Arbitration Centre In Mumbai
iii. Justice S SNijjar, MP Poonam Mahajan, state chief secretary Swadheen Kshatriya and MCIA CEO Madhukeshwar Desai were present at the launch.It is India’s first international arbitration centre, Khatriya.
iv. Fadnavis announced that the government had prepared a good policy on arbitration and Maharashtra would be the first state to implement it.
v. International Arbitration centre within the country would provide a time-bound and cost-effective arbitration facility and reinforce investor confidence, while furthering the policy of encouraging a culture of institutional arbitration to take root in India, as the Law Commission of India recently suggested was necessary.

NSAB reconstituted with ex-envoy Raghavan as head
i. The National Security Advisory Board (NSAB) had been reconstituted with P S Raghavan, former Ambassador to Russia, as its head.The NSAB deals with internal and external security, foreign affairs, defence, science and technology and economic affairs and normally meets at least once in a month.
ii. Former official of R&AW A B Mathur, Lt General (retd) S L Narasimhan and Prof Bimal N. Patel of Gujarat National Law University Would be the members of the Board.
iii.The first meeting of Raghavan-led NSAB was held and it would have tenure of two years. Its principal objective is to undertake long-term analysis of and provide perspectives on issues of national security.
iv. It produced a Draft Nuclear Doctrine in 2001, a Strategic Defence Review in 2002 and a National Security Review in 2007.
v. The first NSAB was set up in 1998 with K Subrahmanyam as its convener. The National Security Council is the apex body in a three-tier structure, headed by the Prime Minister, with the National Security Adviser as its Secretary.
vi. The National Security Advisory Board consists of senior retired officials, civilian as well as military, academics and distinguished members of civil society drawn from and having expertise in Internal and External Security, Foreign Affairs, Defence, Science & Technology and Economic Affairs.

Sri Lankan PM Ranil Wickremesinghe 3 Day visit to India
i. Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe would arrive in New Delhi for a three-day visit to India.During his stay, he would meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and discuss issues of mutual interest. The visiting dignitary would also call on President Pranab Mukherjee.
ii. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan and Minister of Road Transport and Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari would also call on the visiting dignitary.
iii. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe haddecided to conclude an enhanced bilateral economic partnership by the end of this year to allow the free flow of services, investments and technology, in addition to the existing Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the two nations.
iv. Sri Lanka and the five southern States, including Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and TamilSri Lankan PM Ranil Wickremesinghe 3 Day visit to IndiaNadu, together have a population of 272 million people and a combined gross domestic product of over $500 billion.
Sri Lanka :
♦ Capitals: Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte,
♦ Colombo President: Maithripala Sirisena
♦ Currency: Sri Lankan rupee


Forbes Richest American List – Five Indians featured in the List
Five Indian-Americans are among the 400 richest people in the US, according to a Forbes list. This list is topped by Microsoft’s co-founder Bill Gates for the 23rd year in a row.
5 Indians in the list :
1.Symphony Technology founder Romesh Wadhwani,
2.Co-founders of outsourcing firm Syntel Bharat & Neerja Desai,
3.Airline veteran Rakesh Gangwal,
4.Entrepreneur John Kapoor and
5.Silicon Valley angel investor Kavitark Ram Shriram

Morocco’s Islamic PJD party won parliamentary polls
i. The moderate Islamist Party of Justice and Development had won Morocco’s national elections, despite frustration with its handling of the economy in its five years leading the government and a challenge from a party close to the royal palace.
ii. PJD, which had been running a coalition government since 2011, won 125 seats, while the opposition Authenticity and Modernity Party (PAM) came second, with 102 seats.
iii. The Istiqlal (Independence) Party – the oldest in the country, founded in 1944 – came third by winning 46 seats, following by National Rally of Independents (RNI) with 37 seats, and Popular Movement (MP) with 27.
iv. The results represented a strong message of support for the ruling PJD, despite opposition criticism that the Islamic party had failed to achieve tangible results in its five years of power
Morocco :
♦ Capital: Rabat
♦ Currency: Moroccan dirham


Adoption of GST tax would boost India’s medium-term growth: IMF
i. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) had asserted that adoption of GST (Goods and Services) tax would boost India’s medium-term growth.
ii. India’s strong reform push in 2016 was welcome and should continue quickly. Adoption of the goods and services tax is self -contained to boost India’s medium-term growth was announced by  the IMF  in its latest Asia Pacific regional economic update.IMF new
iii. Greater labour market flexibility and product market competition remain essential to create jobs and raise growth. Priorities also includeeffective implementation of the new corporate debt restructuring mechanisms.
iv. India’s GDP growth is projected at 7.6 per cent in both 2016/17 fiscal year (ending in March 2017) and 2017/18 fiscal year, up 0.1 percentage point relative to the April 2016 World Economic Outlook, a survey conducted and published by the IMF.
v. GST is uniform single indirect tax regime throughout the country that has subsumed central and state indirect taxes into single indirect tax. It aims to remove indirect tax barriers across states and integrate the country into a single common market, boosting government revenue and reducing business costs.The Constitution (One Hundred and First Amendment) Act, 2016 gives the constitutional status to GST.


Doordarshan and IGNOU signed agreement for telecast of GyanDarshan channels
i. Doordarshan and Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) had entered into an agreement for transmission of four GyanDarshan educational channels. Gyan Darshan ran successfully till June 2, 2014, but was shut down by ISRO to facilitate its migration from INSAT 3C to GSAT-10.
ii. IGNOU now needed to apply for a fresh license to start the uplinking of its channels for GSAT-10 satellite, as under the Uplinking and Downlinking Guidelines of the I&B Ministry, it is not eligible for the grant of a license.
iii. The GyanDarshan Bouquet  of Educational TV Channels is an educational media initiative of MHRD in collaboration  with  the ministry of Information and Broadcasting(MIB),Prasar Bharathi and ISRO with IGNOU as the nodal agency.
iv. IGNOU Vice Chancellor Ravindra Kumar stated that the Gyandarshan had always been a flagship programme for IGNOU and educational community.
v. Earlier in October 2014, indiantelevision.con and had reported that the channels GyanDarshan and Gyanvani had been shut down because of non-payment. While the figures were DD were not available

India to be 2nd largest coal producer by 2020: Study
India is expected to become the second largest coal producer and US as the world’s biggest coal producer after China by 2020 according to BMI research.
♦ US and other countries are moving faster toward replacing the fuel with cleaner energy sources such as natural gas to meet tougher emissions standards.
India’s Coal Strategy :
i. India’s coal accounts for 61% of electricity generation capacity. It is seeking to reduce imports of the fuel by boosting domestic output.
ii. India plans to expand coal output to 1.5 billion metric tons by 2020 from an estimated 634 million tons in the year ended 31 March.
iii. India’s coal deficit is expected to narrow to 163 million tons by 2020 from 191 million tons in 2016.

India Would Become Second Biggest Steel Manufacturer By Year
i. Union Minister for Steel Birender Singh stated that  India would become the second biggest steel manufacturer in the world by year-end Currently, China is the largest steel manufacturing country followed by Japan and produces five times more steel than India.
ii. At present, about six lakh tonnes of steel is manufactured in old factories and private plants across India. Steel industry accounts for just two per cent share in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country and efforts are being made to increase it.
iii. India’s production in first two months i.e. January- February of 2015 was 14.56 million tonnes (MT). This production growth was the highest during this two month period at 7.6% as compared to the global average of just 0.6% at 127.6 MT.Steel Mabufacture
iv. While the US, which was the third-largest steel producer since 2010 has produced13.52 MT during this two month period, giving away its position to India. Now, the production in US is heading for stagnation with no signs of growth.
v. Chinare mained in the first place in steel production and accounts for nearly half of the global steel production. During this period China has produced 65 MT steel. Japan is the second-largest steel producer and has reported a total production of 17.4 MT. In the past five years, India was the fourth-largest steel producer behind China, Japan and the US.


Special soldier medals for ITBP canines, horses
i. For the first time, four-legged ‘soldiers’ who accompany troops in combat zones for sanitisation exercises and logistical tasks will be decorated with special medals instituted exclusively for them on lines of those given to troops.
ii. This initiative has been taken by Sino-India border guarding force ITBP which has instituted an ‘Animal Transport’ and a ‘K9’ (canine) medal and has chosen its workhorse ‘Thubderbolt’ and female dog ‘Sophia’ for the maiden decoration to be awarded to them during its forthcoming 55th anniversary celebrations.
iii. The special medals were recently approved by ITBP Director General Krishna Chaudhary who will himslef honour Sophia and Thunderbolt by putting the medals around their neck after a majestic parade to mark the force’s anniversary in Greater Noida.

Telegana’s Bathukamma event enters record book
i. The Telangana government organised the Guinness Record entrants – traditional state festival of ‘Bathukamma’ on a grand scale at the Lal Bahadur stadium in Hyderabad
ii. With participation of 9,292 women, surpassed the Onam dance organised in Kerala in 2015 in which 5,015 women had participated, the festival entered the Guinness Record Book.
iii. On first five days women will clean their vakili, cow dung mixed with water is spread in the courtyard as a ground-base, decorate the ground-base with managala aakara or muggu patterns or rangoli made of rice flour.
iv. For the first five days Batukamma is prepared with cow dung. Five small lumps in cone shape are arranged in the vakili.


Renu Pall appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Austria    
i. Former Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer of the 1988 batch , Ms. Renu Pall has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Austria.
ii. It was announced by Ministry of External Affairs.
Austria :
♦ It is one of the country in Europe
♦ Capital: Vienna
♦ Currency: Euro

Lieutenant General AK Sharma takes over as GoC of 16 corps
i. Lieutenant General AK Sharma assumed command of the White Knight Corps (16 Corps) from Lieutenant General RR Nimbhorkar on October 10 2016Lieutenant General AK Sharma takes over as GoC of 16 corps
ii. He was commissioned in 1980 into 2 SIKH, a unit which he later commanded on the line of control and during ‘Operation Parakram’.
iii. The General officer has been decorated with YSM, SM and COAS Commendation Card.
iv. Before taking charge of White Knight Corps the General officer tenanted the appointment of Director General of Recruiting.

Indian-origins Valerie Vazand and Shami Chakrabarti appointed to UK shadow cabinet
i. Indian-origins Valerie Vaz and Shami Chakrabarti are appointed as the leader and attorney-general in Corbyn’s shadow cabinet by the Labour Party.
ii. Vaz(61) has been an MP for Walsall South since the 2010 general election and She is also Vice Chairwoman of the Labour Parliamentary Party.
iii. Chakrabarti(47)is the former director of campaign group Liberty.She was elevated to the House of Lords just a month after she concluded a report into alleged anti-semitism in the Labour party.
UK  :
♦ Capital: London
♦ Currency: Pound sterling
♦ Prime minister: Theresa May
♦ The Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the UK Parliament or British Parliament.The parliament is bicameral, consisting of an upper house (the House of Lords) and a lower house (the House of Commons)


Nico Rosberg won the Japanese Grand Prix
i. Nico Roseberg of Germany and Mercedes GP won the Japan Grandprix at Suzaka Circuit in Suzaka.
ii. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton finished the GP withNico Rosbergsecond and third respectively. While the Ferraris of Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen finished fourth and fifth
Japanese Grand Prix 2016 :
1st – Nico Roseberg(Mercedes)
2nd – Max Verstappen(Red Bull)
3rd – Lewis Hamilton(Mercedes)

Virat Kohli Becomes First Indian Test Captain to Score Two Double Centuries
i. Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli becomes First Indian Test Captain to Score Two Double Centuries.
ii. He completed his second Test double century at Indore on Day 2 of the third Test vs New Zealand.
iii. This is the Kohli’s second double century in Test cricket


PM Modi launched works dedicated to Deen Dayal Upadhyay’s philosophy
i. Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a series of works dedicated to the philosophy of Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay in New Delhi on October 9 2016
ii. As part of efforts to spread the message of BJP ideologue Deen Dayal Upadhyay in his birth centenary year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi  launched a series of works dedicated to the philosophy of the former Jana Sangh chief.
iii. The 15-volume work highlights key events in the life of Upadhyay, the journey of Jana Sangh and of the country includes watershed events like the 1965 Indo-Pakistan war, Tashkent agreement, and Goa’s liberation.
iv. The next-to-last volume records events leading up to the murder of Upadhyay soon after he became Jana Sangh chief in 1967.


World Post Day – October 9 2016
i. World Post day observed each year on October 9 all over the world to commemorating the date for the establishment of Universal Postal Union (UPU) in 1874 in Bern, Switzerland.
World Post Day 2016ii. World Post Day was first declared at the 1969 UPU Congress in Tokyo, Japan
iii. Objective :  To increase the awareness of people about the postal sector role for people and businesses every day.
iv. 2016 theme: Innovation, Integration and Inclusion
v.The national Post week observed in India from October 9 to October 15.