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Current Affairs Today – September 3 2016

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Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik unveiled Biju Kanya Ratna Yojana scheme
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik launched the ‘Biju Kanya Ratna Yojana’ (BKRY) and inaugurated 1,000 anganwadi buildings here as part of the celebration marking birth centenary of legendary Biju Patnaik.
About Biju Kanya Ratna Yojana :
i. This scheme will create awareness on gender discrimination against girls, their health, nutrition and education
ii. The objective of the scheme is to improve Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) and Child Sex Ratio (CSR) in the three districts.
iii. It will ensure enrollment of girls in elementary education, tracking dropout girls from schools and creating a better environment for them.
iv. The scheme, announced in the state’s budget, will be implemented in Ganjam, Dhenkanal and Angul districts in the first phase. The three districts were identified as the places where the girl child sex ratio at birth is low in comparison to other districts of Odisha.

Majuli River Island – World Largest River Island says Guinness World Records
The Guinness World Records has declared Majuli in Assam as the largest river island in the world. The beautiful river island is situated on the Brahmaputra River. It has toppled Marajo in Brazil to clinch the record.
About Majuli :
i. Mājuli or Majoli  is the world biggest river island in the world in the Brahmaputra River, Assam, India. The island had a total area of 1,250 square kilometres at the beginning of the 20th century, but having lost significantly to erosion it had an area of only 352 square kilometres in 2014.
ii. Originally, the island was a long, narrow piece of land called Majoli that had the Brahmaputra flowing in the north and the Burhidihing flowing in the south, till they met at Lakhu.
iii. Majuli has shrunk as the river surrounding it has grown.However it is recognized by Guinness Book of World Records as World’s Largest River Island
iv. The island is formed by the Brahmaputra river in the south and the Kherkutia Xuti, an anabranch of the Brahmaputra, joined by the Subansiri River in the north. Mājuli island is accessible by ferries from the city of Jorhat.

Maharashtra announces new housing policy
i. Maharashtra is set launch a new housing policy for the state dwellers. The move comes New Housing Policyfrom the government before Brihan Mumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) election. The Scheme will renovate over 10,000 old or dilapidated buildings from the suburbs.
ii. The proposed Policy for the redevelopment of buildings on 7,000 lots in 104 layouts of the state-owned Maharashtra Housing & Area Development Authority (MHADA), While Floor Space Index (FSI) of four will be given for MHADA layouts in Greater Mumbai.
iii. The state CM Devendra Fadnavis stated that the state was devising a policy for redevelopment of Asia’s biggest slum, Dharavi in this city.
iv. Following the implementation over 85,000 slum dwellers on Mumbai airport land owned would be transformed to the new location.

Rajasthan High Court launched the e-stamp facility
i. The Rajasthan High Court launched the e-stamp facility in its Jodhpur and Jaipur benches simultaneously. Rajasthan has become the fourth state in the country to provide the facility.
ii. Chief Justice ofRajasthan highCourt Navin Sinha inaugurated the e-Court Fees Centre in Jaipur while in Jodhpur the facility was launched by high Court judge Govind Mathur.
iii. From the barcode of e-stamp it can be found if it is correct, genuine and not pre-used. Thus, the facility is completely secure and reliable and there is no possibility of any forgery or tampering.
iv. Payment of court fees through e-stamps is a simple, easy and secure process.
v. It is noted that in Rajasthan high court, present Court Fee Stamp System will continue for the time being along with e-stamping facility.

Pondy Lt Guv launches Shramdaan movement in remote village
i. Puducherry Lt Governor Kiran Bedi launched Shramdaan movement as part of Swachh Bharatand Swachh Puducherry initiative at Seliamedu village in Bahoor.
ii. The iniative is a habit and a movement, and every one irrespective of status should be involved in the drive against garbage the Lt Governor urged.
iii. She also asked people to ensure that the goal of clean Puducherry is achieved at the earliest and volunteered herself in the movement to remove the garbage close to the community hall which was the venue of the programme.
iv. The governor along with Chief Secretary Manoj Parida, District Collector of Puducherry and collected the garbage and dumped. She also planted saplings outside the hall.
♦Lieutenant Governor: Kiran Bedi
♦Chief Minister: V. Narayanasamy


Microsoft, Google sign up for EU US Privacy Shield
Microsoft, Google i. US based tech giants Microsoft, Google and Sales force have officially adopted the EU-US Privacy Shield framework which enables these majors to receive personal data from the European Union (EU) in agreement with the new standards.
ii. However Apple, Facebook and Twitter yet to adopt the shield. While 103 companies signed up of the 5,526 signatories to replace the defunct Safe Harbour framework.
iii. The European Commission adopted the Privacy Shield framework for transatlantic exchanges of personal data for commercial purposes from the EU to the US.
iv.The Privacy Shield is a deliberate scheme where entities promise to treat European citizens’ personal data in compliance with European Union data rules.


UNESCO Confucius Prize for literacy awarded to Jan Sikshan Sansthan (JSS), Malappuram
United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) has selected Human Resource and Development Ministry’s Jan Sikshan Sansthan (JSS) project implemented in Malappuram for the international UNESCO Confucius Prize for literacy 2016.
About JSS Malapuram :
i. The district of Malappuram is bordered by the Nilgiris in the East, Arabian Sea in the West and other Kerala district of Kozhikkode in the North and Palakkad and Trissur in the South. The district was formed in the year 1969.
ii. This land in slightly elevated and has 23.5 percentage of forest area.
iii. Jan Shikshan Sansthan-Malappuram started functioning from 01-04-2006 onwards. The Sansthan comes under the aegis of Nilambur Muslim Orphanage Committee which is registered under the Societies Registration Act 1860 in the year 1970 and has its Head quarters at Myladi.
iv. JSS-Malappuram has come out with a series of Vocational Trainings, awareness classes and other activities during its 6 years of working.

Action stat Jackie Chan to receive Lifetime Achievement Oscar Award 2016
i. Hong Kong-born action star Jackie Chan is about to receive a lifetime achievement Oscar award at the eighth annual Governors Awards on November 12 at Los Angeles.
ii. Chan Kong-sang known professionally as Jackie Chan, is a Hong Kongmartial artist, actor, film director, producer, stuntman, and singer. In his movies, he is known for his acrobatic fighting style, comic timing, use of improvised weapons, and innovative stunts,which he typically performs himself.
iii. Jackie Chan has been training in Kung fuand Wing Chun. He has been acting since the 1960s and has appeared in over 150 films.

Renowned Odia poet Dr Hrushikesh Mallick to be awarded with Sarala Award
Sarala Award 2016i. Renowned Odia poet Dr Hrushikesh Mallick to be honoured with the 37th edition of prestigious Sarala Award for his outstanding poetry.
ii. This prestigious Sarala Puraskar, an award instituted by the Indian Metals Public Charitable Trust (IMPaCT), an organisation established by the IMFA Group, at a special function to be held on October 26.
iii. This award has a cash award of Rs 1,50,000 along with citations.
iv. Hrushikesh Mallick would receive the award for his book ‘Jeje Dekhinathiba Bharat’
v. It is noted that the Ila Panda Smaraki Sangeet Samman would be given to noted singer Dr Gopal Chandra Panda whereas late Dr Dinanath Pathy would be honoured with the Ila Panda Smaraki Chitrakala Samman posthumously.


Anil Khanna – Honorary Life President of the All India Tennis Association
i. Anil Khanna, President of Asian Tennis Federation and Vice President of International Tennis Federation, elected as the Honorary Life President of the All India Tennis Association (AITA).
ii. The All India Tennis Association (AITA) is the governing body of tennis in India. It was established in 1920 and affiliated by International Tennis Federation and Asian Tennis Federation.
iii. All India Tennis Association operates all of the Indian national representative tennis sides, including the India Davis Cup team, theIndia Fed Cup team and youth sides as well.
iv. AITA is also responsible for organizing and hosting tennis tournaments within India and scheduling the home international fixtures.
v. It is noted that AITA already has two honorary Life Presidents — S M Krishna and Yashwant Sinha.

Kerala govt appoints Sachin Tendulkar as brand ambassador for anti- liquor & anti-drug campaign
i. The Left ruled Kerala government has appointed the Cricket star Sachin Tendulkar as brand ambassador for anti- liquor and anti-drug campaign in the state.
ii. Earlier the Mumbaikar was requested by the state Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to be part of the campaign in June this year.
iii. The iniative by the aimed to create awareness among people against alcoholism and drug abuse. In the wake the government has also decided to open up more de-addiction centres for the benefit of the addicted.Sachin-Tendulkar_24
iv. Earlier the batting great was named as the one of the Goodwill ambassadors for the Rio Olympic Games.
♦Capital: Thiruvananthapuram
♦Governor: P. Sathasivam
♦Chief Minister: Pinarayi Vijayan

Shri Jawed Ashraf, IFS – New High Commissioner of India to the Republic of Singapore.
i. Shri Jawed Ashraf, Indian Foreign Service – 1991 batch, presently Joint Secretary in the Ministry, has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to the Republic of Singapore.
ii. He is expected to take up his assignment shortly.
iii. Singapore officially the Republic of Singapore, and often referred to as the Lion City, the Garden City, and theRed Dot, is a global city and sovereign state in Southeast Asia and the world’s only island city-state.
iv. It lies one degree north of the equator, south of the southernmost tip of continental Asia and peninsular Malaysia, with Indonesia‘s Riau Islands to the south. Singapore’s territory consists of a diamond-shaped main island along with 62 other islets.
v. Since independence, extensive land reclamation has increased its total size by 23% and its greening policy has covered the densely populated island with tropical flora, parks and gardens.
vi. Singapore is a global commerce, finance and transport hub. Its standings include: easiest place to do business” (World Bank) for ten consecutive years, most“technology-ready”nation (WEF), top International-meetings city (UIA), city with “best investment potential” (BERI), 2nd-most competitive country (WEF), 3rd-largest foreign exchange centre, 3rd-largest financial centre, 3rd-largestoil refining and trading centre and one of the top two busiest container ports since the 1990s.
vii.Singapore’s best known global brands include Singapore Airlines (SIA) and Changi Airport, both amongst the most-awarded in their industry. For the past decade, it has been the only Asian country with the top AAA sovereign rating from all major credit rating agencies, including S&P, Moody’s and Fitch.


Infosys joins hand with Saudi Prerogative Company to offer IT services
i. Infosys entered into a joint venture with the Saudi Prerogative Company to offer IT services in the middle eastern country.
ii. The investment in the Joint Venture will be a little over $300,000 in the equity share capital of the proposed joint venture company, Infosys.
iii. The joint venture will be in the ratio of 70:30 and the agreement is subject to the approval of the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority.
iv. Infosys Limited is an Indian multinational corporation that provides business consulting,information technology and outsourcing services. It is headquartered in Bangalore, Karnataka.
v. Infosys is the second-largest Indian IT services company by 2016 revenues and the fifth largest employer of H-1B visa professionals in the United States in FY 2013. On 15 February 2015, its market capitalization was Rs. 263,735 crores, making it India’s sixth largest publicly traded company.


“World’s first” Driverless minibuses begun it services in France
i. “World’s first” Driverless minibuses began taking passengers in the eastern French city of Lyon after a year-long experiment.
ii. Two electric minibuses with a capacity of 15 passengers each are now operating a 10-minute route with five stops in the city centre at an average speed of 6 miles (10km) per hour.
Driveless Minibusesiii. It is noted that the minibuses have already been tested in other French cities as well as in Sion, Switzerland, but without carrying passengers.
iv. These two electric vehicles are fitted with high-tech equipment including laser sensors,stereo vision and GPS, can ferry around 15 passengers at a top speed of 20 kilometres an hour.
v. Each minibus, costing about £170,000, is equipped with lasers, cameras and electronic systems that detect and analyze any movement around it.


World’s oldest fossils unveil life 3.7 billion years ago
i. A team of Scientists led by the University of Wollongong’s (UOW) Professor Allen Nutman have discovered the world’s oldest fossils which is about 3.7 billion years old.
ii. The discovery which further dates back with the previous record by 220 million years and captures the earliest history of our planet.
iii. The team discovered stromatolite fossils in the world’s oldest sedimentary rocks, in the Isua Greenstone Belt along the edge of Greenland’s icecap.
iv. The findings provides a greater understanding of early range of life on Earth which researchers say could have repercussions for our understanding of life on Mars. The study was published in the journal Nature.

New species of pterosaur from early Jurassic period discovered
i. According to the study published in the journal PeerJ, A team of scientists has discovered a new species of pterosaur which is an extinct group of flying reptiles from the early Jurassic period in the Patagonia region in Argentina
ii. The discovered spices has been named Allkauren koi from the native Tehuelche word which means all- brain’, and karuen-ancient’ brain ancient.
iii. The fossil of Allkaruen koi was discovered in the Chubut Province in Argentina. This is from the middle lower Jurassic limit, shows middle state in the brain development of pterosaurs and their adaptations to the aerial environment.
iv. The study also reveals variety of new information on the origin, tempo and mode of evolution in pterosaurs.

Ankasamudra to become a conservation reserve
i. The Karnataka State Wildlife Board, chaired by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, has decided to declare Ankasamudra tank in Hagari Bommanahalli taluk as a bird conservation reserve.
ii. The Ankasamudra was well known for birds be it local or migratory as it is gaining fame among bird watchers and naturalists. The conservation reserve is first of its kind in the entire Hyderabad-Karnataka region.
iii. The conservation reserve tank is a home of over 140 species of birds, both local and migratory, including Rosy Starlings, painted storks, open billed storks, Northern Shovelors, Northern Pintails, Sand pipers, cormorants, parakeets, egrets, ibis and herons among others, chose as their nestling place.


Australia’s oldest surviving Test player dies
i. Former Australian Wicketkeeper Batsman Len Maddocks who was oldest surviving test cricketer in the country has passed away. He was 90 years old. He became the oldest cricketer last year after the death of Arthur Morris.
ii. Maddocks played seven Tests for Australia during the 1950s and played 112 first-class matches, representing Victoria and Tasmania that spanned more than 20 years. The glove man had limited chances to play for his national side.
iii. He made his Test debut at his home ground, the MCG, against England in 1954-55, besides his top score was 47. On the other hand he served as a national selector and a Victorian Cricket Association board director.

Uzbekistan’s President Islam Karimov passed away
i. Uzbekistan’s President Islam Karimov has died, the Government announced the ending over a quarter of a century of his iron-fisted rule in the Central Asian nation.
ii. On 29 August 2016 he was reported to be in intensive care, after suffering a stroke and he had died on 2 September, with the government officially confirmed the news.
iii. Islam Abduganiyevich Karimov was the first President of Uzbekistan, in office from 1991 to 2016.President Islam Karimov
iv. Karimov was born in Samarkand and was in and out of an orphanage from 1941 to 1945, growing up to study economics and engineering. He became an official in the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, becoming the party’s First Secretary in Uzbekistan in 1989. On 24 March 1990 he became President of the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic.
V. Karimov’s election to the Uzbek Communist Party resulted after his predecessor Rafiq Nishonov failed to quell inter-ethnic clashes and instability in the Fergana Region.
vi. Karimov permitted the participation of the opposition organizations Birlik and the Islamic Renaissance Party until his efforts to consolidate power over Shukrullo Mirsaidov, one of the former Communist Party elite who had originally supported Karimov’s rise to the Party presidency. The period of political thaw was brief; Karimov began to complicate the registration process of opposition parties during elections.
vii. As Birlik grew in strength as a “popular movement”, it was denied the ability to register as a “political party” without the required 60,000 signatures. The Karimov government allowed Birlik one day to gather these signatures, 25,000 of which they rejected. Karimov effectively took authoritarian measures to block any meaningful opposition.

Czech Olympic champion gymnast Vera Caslavska dies aged 74
i. Renowned Czech gymnast Vera Caslavska who has been considered as the most decorated Czech gymnast in history died at the age of 74 after battling pancreatic cancer.
ii. The outspoken gymnast won seven Olympic golds and four silvers along with 22 international titles between 1959 and 1968.
iii. Following her retirement from the game she served as president of the Czech Olympic Committee (COC), won the Pierre de Coubertin Prize for promoting fair play and was also awarded the Olympic Order by the IOC.
iv.She is also well known for her forthright support of the Czechoslovak democratization movement and her disapproval to the 1968 Soviet-led incursion of Czechoslovakia.