Home Daily Updates IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 16- OCTOBER - 2016
IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 16- OCTOBER - 2016
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Sunday, 16 October 2016 03:25

 

 

 


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DAILY NEWS UPDATES

16- OCTOBER - 2016

:: NATIONAL ::

GOVT ASKED AIMPLB TO RECONSIDER THEIR DECISION TO BOYCOTT CONSULTATION ON UCC

  • The government asked the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) and certain other Muslim organisations to reconsider their decision to boycott the Law Commission’s consultation on triple talaq and the Uniform Civil Code (UCC).
  • At the same time it sharply criticised the AIMPLB for “targeting” Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue.
  • Mr. Naidu asked that the case against triple talaq now under way in the Supreme Court not be mixed up with the efforts of the Law Commission for a UCC.
  • The AIMPLB, while announcing the decision to boycott the Law Commission’s consultation, had criticised the Modi government for allegedly trying to distract attention from its “failures” by raising the issue of UCC.
  • Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the question of a UCC or even invalidation of triple talaq were not matters pertaining to faith but rituals and customs.

PAKISTAN ARMY CONFIRMED SEPOY CHANDU CHAVAN IS IN ITS CUSTODY

  • The Pakistan Army confirmed for the first time that sepoy Chandu Babulal Chavan, who went missing near the Line of Control (LoC) on September 29, is in its custody.
  • Though India said the sepoy “inadvertently” crossed the LoC, Pakistan had so far refused to acknowledge his presence.
  • The Pakistani side accepted it during a conversation between the Directors-General of Military Operations over the established hotline.
  • The 22-year-old sepoy crossed the LoC by accident after the surgical strikes by the Indian Army.
  • He was posted in Mendhar district of Jammu and Kashmir near the LoC and had strayed across the border at Jhandroot, west of Mankote village in Poonch district, and was captured by the Pakistan Army.

SOUTH ASIAN SUFI FESTIVAL BEGAN IN JAIPUR

  • The three-day South Asian Sufi Festival began with a call for giving a “healing touch” to the turbulent and violence-ridden society facing the scourge of terrorism.
  • Speakers highlighted Sufism as a philosophy that could eliminate terrorism, curb religious fanaticism and stop communal violence.
  • Activists, artists, academicians, writers and Sufi mystics from the SAARC countries laid emphasis on promoting syncretic beliefs and composite culture of South Asia reflected in its folklore, literature, music, myths and legends.
  • A 25-member delegation of artists and authors from Pakistan gave a miss to the prestigious event amid deteriorating relations with India.
  • Programme’s title had been changed from the SAARC festival to South Asian festival this year because of the absence of participants from Pakistan.
  • Inaugurating the festival, Union Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs Arjun Ram Meghwal said Sufism could act as an antidote to terrorism, which was the biggest disease in today’s time.

PM SAID COUNTRY SHOULD NOT BE FOUND “SLEEPING” WHEN IT SHOULD BE AWAKE

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the Army would never “forgive” the country if it was found “sleeping” when it should be awake, in comments that come against the backdrop of the recent surgical strikes.
  • He asserted that the Army did not believe in speaking but in displaying its valour.
  • “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty. We have to keep alert always. It will be injustice to the Army if we sleep away when we have to be awake,” he said without elaborating.
  • Addressing ex-servicemen and their families at the inauguration of the ‘Shaurya Smarak’ (memorial to valour) here, he hailed the role of the armed forces and their spirit of sacrifice in adverse situations.
  • Mr. Modi said the country had never waged a war to capture another country. “But if it comes to fighting for values and ideals, India is never found wanting,” he said.
  • Lauding the valour and humanity of the armed forces, he referred to their relief and rescue operations in Srinagar during the floods two years ago despite the violence they faced from the stone-pelting mobs.

:: INTERNATIONAL ::

ISRAEL SUSPENDED ITS COOPERATION WITH UNESCO

  • Israel suspended cooperation with Unesco, a day after the U.N. cultural agency adopted a draft resolution that Israel says denies the deep, historic Jewish connection to holy sites in Jerusalem.
  • Unesco’s draft resolution, uses only the Islamic name for a hilltop compound sacred to both Jews and Muslims, which includes the Western Wall, a remnant of the biblical temple and the holiest site where Jews can pray.
  • The validated resolution is expected early next week, but the wording is unlikely to change.
  • Israelis and many Jews around the world viewed it as the latest example of an ingrained anti-Israel bias at the UN, where Israel and its allies are far outnumbered by Arab countries and their supporters.
  • Israel captured East Jerusalem, with sites holy to Jews, Christians and Muslims, in the 1967 war. Palestinians claim the territory as part of their future state, and its fate is a central dispute
  • Jews refer to the hilltop compound in Jerusalem’s Old City as the Temple Mount, site of the two Jewish biblical temples.
  • Muslims refer to it as the Noble Sanctuary, and it is home to the Al-Aqsa mosque and the golden Dome of the Rock. It is the holiest site in Judaism and the third holiest in Islam, after Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia.

BANGLADESH AND CHINA HAVE AGREED TO ELEVATE THEIR COOPERATION

  • Bangladesh and China have agreed to elevate their cooperation to “strategic partnership” during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to the South Asian country.
  • The two countries have also agreed to jointly advance China’s ‘belt and road initiative’ and establish “institutional cooperation” in areas of maritime issues and counter-terrorism.
  • Mr. Xi’s milestone visit to Dhaka, first in 30 years by a Chinese president, also witnessed the signing of 26 agreements on different sectors.
  • Ms. Hasina said the agreements have created a platform for “our two countries to cooperate at a higher plane.”
  • She hoped that with cooperation from China, Bangladesh will be able to reach its goal to become a middle-income country by 2021, and wished that the friendship between the two countries will grow stronger.

:: INDIA AND WORLD ::

INDIA LIKELY TO INK A DEAL ON THE S-400 TRIUMF LONG RANGE AIR DEFENCE SYSTEM

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will raise India’s “concerns” regarding Russian cooperation with Pakistan during the bilateral summit meeting.
  • Diplomats said the recent Russia-Pakistan military exercise was an isolated “episode” but expressed the hope that as a “special privileged partner” Russia will address India’s Pakistan-related concerns.
  • Mr. Putin said Russia was moving towards having a “regional" approach to deal with threats from South Asia.
  • India and Russia are likely to ink a deal on the S-400 Triumf long range air defence system estimated to be worth Rs. 39,000.
  • The S-400 is considered one of the most advanced long range defence systems in the world and can tackle all incoming airborne targets at ranges of up to 400 km.
  • The second deal likely to be signed is for a Joint Venture to be set up by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited of India and Rostec State Corporation of Russia to manufacture Kamov-226T utility helicopters in India.
  • It is understood that under the agreement, at least 200 helicopters would be produced to replace the ageing Cheetah and Chetak fleets of the armed forces.
  • In addition, the FGFA, Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft is also expected to be taken up during the summit.

:: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY ::

THERE ARE A DIZZYING TWO TRILLION GALAXIES IN THE UNIVERSE

  • There are a dizzying two trillion galaxies in the universe, up to twenty times more than previously thought, astronomers have found.
  • The surprising find, based on 3D modelling of images collected over 20 years by the Hubble Space Telescope, has been published in the Astronomical Journal .
  • Even in the era of modern astronomy, getting an accurate tally of the number of galaxies in the universe has proved difficult.
  • To begin with, there is only part of the cosmos where light given off by distant objects has had time to reach Earth. The rest is effectively beyond our reach.
  • And even within this “observable universe,” current technology only allows us to glimpse ten percent of what is out there, according to the new findings.
  • The analysis reached back more than 13 billion years — very near the time of the “Big Bang” thought to have given birth to the universe.

:: BUSINESS AND ECONOMY ::

AIR INDIA POSTS OPERATIONAL PROFIT FOR FIRST TIME IN 8 YEARS

  • Air India posted an operational profit of Rs.105 crore in 2015-16 compared with an operational loss of Rs.2,636 crore in 2014-15 due to an increase in traffic growth.
  • This is the first time the national carrier has posted an operational profit since it was merged with erstwhile Indian Airlines in 2007, the financial results of 2015-16 cleared by the airline’s auditors and approved by its Board showed.
  • A sharp decline in aviation turbine fuel prices helped it bolster operational profit to more than Rs.100 crore in 2015-16 even as the airline was earlier expecting an operational profit of Rs.8 crore.
  • Aviation fuel accounts for roughly 40 per cent of an airline’s operational costs. As the airline offered lower fares, it carried 18 million passengers in 2015-16 compared with 16.88 million passengers last year.
  • Airline’s operational cost per average seat kilometre came down from Rs.4.59 in 2014-15 to Rs.3.88 in 2015-16.

WHOLESALE PRICE INFLATION EASED MARGINALLY IN SEPTEMBER

  • Wholesale price inflation eased marginally in September to 3.6 per cent from 3.7 per cent in August due to a cooling off of food prices, data released by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry showed.
  • Inflation in the food category eased to 5.75 per cent in September from 8.23 per cent in August.
  • The slowdown in the growth of the WPI comes at a time when India’s retail inflation also eased sharply.
  • Growth in the Consumer Price Index stood at 4.3 per cent in September, the slowest in more than a year, down from 5.05 per cent in August.
  • This shows that the Reserve Bank of India was correct in cutting rates in its latest policy review, according to experts.

:: IMPORTANT DETAILED NEWS ::

NAYANJOT LAHIRI WINS 2016 JOHN F RICHARDS PRIZE

Nayanjot Lahiri, Professor of History at the Ashoka University, was awarded with the 2016 John F. Richards Prize for her book Ashoka in Ancient India.

The prize will be awarded to her at the Association’s 131st Annual Meeting in January, 2017.

Highlights of the Book Ashoka in Ancient India

• The book has been critically acclaimed for its enthralling account of an emperor who spoke to his people through his edicts; his victories and loss that left a legacy that surpassed him.

• It is the innovative interface of Emperor Ashoka’s words which invite and enable a biographical narrative, with the archaeological landscapes where they can still be read.

• The Book adjudicates between archaeological, textual, and geographical evidence to offer a dazzling interpretation of a remarkable figure of the ancient world and a deep history of ancient society.

About Nayanjot Lahiri

• Nayanjot Lahiri is an eminent historian and archaeologist of ancient India.

• Currently, she is teaching at the newly created Ashoka University.

• She has several research papers and publications to her credit. H

• Her research interests mostly include Indian archaeology, heritage studies, archeological theory and ancient India.

• For her work in archaeology, she was bestowed with the 2013 Infosys Prize in the humanities.

About John F. Richards Prize

• The Richards Prize is awarded annually by the American Historical Association (AHA) to the best book in South Asian history.

• The award has been named after John F. Richards (November 1938 to August 2007) who was eminent historian of South Asia and in particular of the Mughal Empire.

• It recognizes the most distinguished work of scholarship or book on South Asian history published in English.

UNION CABINET APPROVES MOU BETWEEN INDIA AND EUROPEAN UNION ON WATER COOPERATION

The Union Cabinet approved the signing of MoU between India and European Union in the field of water resources.

The MoU envisages strengthening the technological, scientific and management capabilities of India and the European Union in the field of water management on the basis of equality, reciprocity and mutual benefit.

Highlights of the MoU

• It provides technical exchange on water issues, including on integrated water resource management plans within river basins and through study visits.

• It aims to identify key environmental issues and approaches to sustainable development where exchange of experiences could be beneficial to develop cooperation in the field of water management.

• It envisions a more sustainable management of water resources in India with an objective of tackling the challenges posed by water management in the context of growing population, competing water demands and a changing climate.

• A Joint Working Group shall be formed to monitor the activities to be carried out in fulfillment of the MoU.

Background
The Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation has been envisaging bilateral cooperation with other countries in water resources development through sharing of policy and technical expertise, conducting of training courses, workshops, and study tours.

Keeping in view the success of the European Union in distribution of water resources, water pricing, water use efficiency to protect water resources and quality, such as switching to less water-demanding crops, etc., it was decided to have an agreement with Israel to benefit from their experience.

The EU States have already adopted water pricing policies to provide adequate incentives for users to use water resources efficiently thereby contributing to environmental objectives.

UNION CABINET APPROVES MOU BETWEEN INDIA AND AFRICAN ASIAN RURAL DEVELOPMENT ORGANIZATION

The Union Cabinet approved the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and the African Asian Rural Development Organization (AARDO) for capacity building programmes in the field of rural development.

Under this MoU, capacity building programmes for AARDO member countries will be organized every year at various Institutions of Excellence in India such as National Institute of Rural Development & Panchayati Raj, Indian Council of Agricultural Research, Indian Institute of Management and others.

The duration of each training programme shall be of two to three weeks. The Post Graduate Diploma in Rural Development Management Course at NIRD & PR under this scheme will be for one year.

About African Asian Rural Development Organization (AARDO)

• The AARDO has its headquarters in New Delhi.

• It is an autonomous, inter-Governmental organization established in 1962 with the objective of promoting cooperation among the countries of the African - Asian Region.

• It works in the direction of eradicating thirst, hunger, illiteracy, disease and poverty in the region.

• India is one of the Founder Members of the Organization and is the largest contributor in terms of membership contribution of 141100 US dollars.

• Since the year 2009, India is continuing to provide an Additional Contribution of 600000 US dollars to AARDO for each triennium to expand its scale and scope of the Capacity Building Programmes.

ISRO’S COMMUNICATION SATELLITE GSAT-18 SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHED FROM FRENCH GUIANA

India successfully launched the communication satellite GSAT-18. The satellite was launched by a heavy duty rocket of Arianespace from the spaceport of Kourou in French Guiana.

The European launcher Ariane-5 VA-231 injected GSAT-18 into a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) shortly after orbiting co-passenger Sky Muster II satellite for Australian operator, National Broadband Network.

After its injection into GTO, ISRO's Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan took control of GSAT-18 and performed the initial orbit raising maneuvers using the Liquid Apogee Motor (LAM) of the satellite, placing it in circular Geostationary Orbit.

GSAT-18

• GSAT-18 is designed to provide continuity of services on operational satellites in C-band, Extended C-band and Ku-bands.

• Weighing 3404 kilograms at lift-off and having a mission life of about 15 years, GSAT-18 will strengthen ISRO's current fleet of 14 operational telecommunication satellites.

• It carries 48 communication transponders to provide services in Normal C-band, Upper Extended C-band and Ku-bands of the frequency spectrum.

• GSAT-18 carries Ku-band beacon as well to help in accurately pointing ground antennas towards the satellite.

• It will enable the continuity of the vital communication services in the country by replacing the currently ageing satellites.

GSAT-18 is the 20th satellite from ISRO to be launched by the European space agency and the mission is the 280th for Arianespace launcher family.

ISRO, which has been dependent on Ariane-5 rocket for carrying its heavier satellites, is developing GSLV Mk III for this purpose.

GSAT-18's co-passenger Sky Muster II, built by Space Systems Loral in California, is aimed at bridging the digital divide, especially in the rural and isolated regions of Australia.

Kourou is a French territory located in northeastern coast of South America. The launch, which was originally scheduled for 5 October 2016, was deferred by 24 hours due to unfavourable weather conditions at Kourou.

SUSHIL CHANDRA APPOINTED CBDT CHAIRMAN

The Union Government appointed Indian Revenue Service officer Sushil Chandra as the Chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).

Chandra will take over from the current CBDT Chairperson Rani Singh Nair, who will retire on 31 October 2016.

Chandra is currently posted as Member, CBDT.

About Central Board of Direct Taxes

The Central Board of Direct Taxes provides essential inputs for policy and planning of direct taxes in India.

It is the policy-making body of the Income Tax Department under the Union Finance Ministry.

It is a statutory authority functioning under the Central Board of Revenue Act, 1963.

The Chairperson of the CBDT is the senior-most IRS civil servant in the Government of India.

The Chairperson of Central Board of Direct Taxes is the ex officio Special Secretary to the Government of India and also cadre controlling authority of the Indian Revenue Service.

The CBDT Chairperson is placed above the officers of the rank of Lieutenant-General, Vice-Admiral or Air Marshal, CBI Director and Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General in the Order of Precedence.

OIL INDIA LIMITED SIGNS MOU WITH UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON

Oil India Limited (OIL) signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the University of Houston (USA), one of the leading universities on oil and gas of the world.

The MoU was signed by OIL with an intent of augmenting its reserves base and maximising recovery from its aging oilfields.

Highlights of the MoU

• It is focused to collaborate in the fields of Improved Oil Recovery & Enhanced Oil Recovery for production enhancement from matured fields & reservoir characterisation studies.

• It will help OIL to further consolidate and upgrade the various initiatives the Company has undertaken to improve production and contribute significantly to the energy security of the country.

• It will also contribute towards national obligation as set by Prime Minister to reduce import dependency of oil and gas by 10% by 2022.

About University of Houston

• Located in the energy capital of the United States of America, University of Houston is home to the leading Oil & Gas operating companies and service providers.

• It is a premier institute involved in the quest of academic and translational excellence in the field of Oil & Gas through its outstanding faculty and research staff.

• It has also established well documented partnership with leading edge academia and industry subject matter experts.

FORMER PORTUGUESE PM ANTONIO GUTERRES SELECTED TO BE UN SECRETARY-GENERAL

Former Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Guterres was unanimously selected by the UN Security Council as the next UN Secretary-General.

Guterres will succeed Ban Ki-moon on 1 January 2017.

The 15-nation Security Council's decision will be sent, following the formal approval, to the 193-member General Assembly for final formal approval.

About Antonio Guterres

Antonio Manuel de Oliveira Guterres is a Portuguese politician.

He served as the Prime Minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002.

He also served for a time as President of the Socialist International.

He served as United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees from June 2005 to December 2015.

About Secretary-General of the United Nations

The Secretary-General of the United Nations is the head of the United Nations Secretariat.

The Secretary-General also acts as the de facto spokesperson and leader of the United Nations.

Their role is laid out by Chapter XV (Articles 97 to 101) of the United Nations Charter.

The Secretary-General was envisioned by U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt as a world moderator.

Article 97 under Chapter XV of the United Nations Charter states that the Secretary-General shall be the chief administrative officer of the Organization, but does not dictate their specific obligations.

 

 

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Last Updated on Monday, 17 October 2016 06:11
 
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