Home Daily Updates IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 29- OCTOBER - 2016
IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 29- OCTOBER - 2016
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DAILY NEWS UPDATES

29- OCTOBER - 2016

: NATIONAL ::

IMD IS LOOKING TO TRANSFER ITS DATA INTO THE CLOUD

  • More than a century after becoming the country’s diviner of clouds to forecast the annual monsoon, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) is looking to transfer its massive troves of data into the cloud.
  • The purpose is to have more centralised control with its regional centres across the country and to be able to make it easier for research arms to access weather-related data.
  • IMD would require data storage in the order of 5 petabytes, according to a 2015 study in the Public Library of Sciences, roughly the amount of data that Twitter is expected to consume in 2025.
  • Cloud-based storage usually means that organisations store their data on third-party servers or access applications without physically storing them on their premises.
  • However, the IMD will locate its cloud on its Delhi campus, a kind of “private” cloud.

GOVT SAID NO CHANGE IN THE EXISTING EQUIVALENCE OF THE SERVICE RANKS

  • Seeking to reassure the services on the issue of parity with their civilian counterparts, the Defence Ministry said there had been no downgrading or any change in the existing equivalence of the service ranks whatsoever.
  • However, the services seem unconvinced and are likely to seek the Defence Minister’s intervention.
  • The existing functional equivalence as clarified in 1991 and further reiterated in 1992, 2000, 2004 and 2005 has only been reaffirmed,” the statement said.
  • In the letter, the Defence Ministry has defined the rank equation between a civilian officer and a serving military officer based on duties and functional responsibilities.
  • Earlier, a Colonel was considered equivalent to a Director and so on, which had created disappointment among the services.

SC SAYS IT WILL NOT GIVE EXHAUSTIVE LIST OF DOS AND DON'T SIN POLITICAL SPEECHES

  • Asked to bar invocation of religion in political speeches, a seven-judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court said it could not be expected to give an “exhaustive list” of dos and don’ts to follow in political speeches.
  • The Bench, led by Chief Justice of India T.S. Thakur, expressed this self-restraint even as three BJP-ruled States — Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Rajasthan — submitted that “religion can never be separated from society”.
  • The Bench, which is examining a reference from a five-judge Bench on the 1995 ‘Hindutva’ judgment of the apex court, said its mandate did not include going into the “permissibility of using religion in political speeches”.
  • As he reserved the reference for judgment, Chief Justice Thakur continued to be firm on the aspect that this Constitution Bench was not concerned with the question of a total bar on religion in political speeches.
  • The enquiry undertaken by the Bench, he observed, was limited to determining if the bar on invoking religion under Article 123 (3) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, in political speeches was limited to the religion of the candidate and his agent or extended to the religion of the voters also.

:: INTERNATIONAL ::

RUSSIA WILL DESTROY ALL OF ITS CHEMICAL WEAPONS BY THE END OF 2017

  • A top Russian official has said his country will destroy all of its chemical weapons by the end of next year, a year earlier than previously announced.
  • As a signatory of the international Chemical Weapons Convention, Russia already has destroyed about 93 per cent of its chemical weapons, according to Russian officials.
  • Russia had to build several plants in the past two decades to dispose of the world’s largest chemical weapons arsenal.

GLOBAL WILDLIFE POPULATIONS HAVE FALLEN BY 58 PER CENT SINCE 1970

  • Global wildlife populations have fallen by 58 per cent since 1970, a report says.
  • The Living Planet assessment by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) suggests that if the trend continues that decline could reach two-thirds among vertebrates by 2020.
  • The figures suggest that animals living in lakes, rivers and wetlands are suffering the biggest losses.
  • Human activity, including habitat loss, wildlife trade, pollution and climate change contributed to the declines.
  • The Living Planet Report is published every two years and aims to provide an assessment of the state of the world’s wildlife.
  • The last report, published in 2014, estimated that the world’s wildlife populations had halved over the last 40 years.
  • The researchers conclude that vertebrate populations are declining by an average of 2% each year.

:: INDIA AND WORLD ::

INDIA AND RUSSIA TO BRING BACK OLD DYNAMISM

  • Seeking to bring the old dynamism back to their bilateral relations, India and Russia have agreed on measures to broad-base military cooperation. They have reassured each other on their evolving partnerships with other countries.
  • India has submitted a non-paper to the Russian side proposing a series of steps such as more military-to-military dialogue, exercises, staff-level talks and joint development.
  • India raised the issue of timely spares and support for the large number of Russian military platforms in service.
  • The dialogue focussed on equipment, platforms, spares, upgrades, serviceability and so on, and seven or eight working groups are engaged in them.
  • To emphasise the military-to-military cooperation, the Ministers agreed to rename the commission Intergovernmental Commission on Military &Military-Technical Cooperation.
  • Russia had agreed that Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. and others could procure spares directly from Russian equipment manufacturers and not go through Rosoboronexport to ensure quick service availability.

:: BUSINESS AND ECONOMY ::

CABINET APPROVED AGREEMENT ON TRADE, COMMERCE AND TRANSIT WITH BHUTAN

  • The Cabinet has approved a new agreement on trade, commerce and transit between India and Bhutan.
  • The pact provides for a free trade regime between two countries, and duty free transit of Bhutanese merchandise for trade with third countries.
  • As per the pact, bilateral trade between will continue to be transacted in Indian Rupees and Bhutanese Ngultrums.
  • Both sides had in July held talks to finalise the text of the draft new agreement.
  • They had then decided that, in the interim, to prevent disruption of trade, the existing agreement should be extended for one year or till the new pact is enforced, whichever is earlier.
  • Bhutan was among the SAARC nations that had shared the concerns of India in the wake of the Uri attack, and expressed solidarity with New Delhi saying it was not conducive to hold the SAARC Summit in Islamabad.
  • Bhutan is also part of the BIMSTEC grouping that had recently held talks with BRICS nations including India to boost ties.
  • The bilateral trade had grown by 55 per cent year-on-year in FY’16 to $750 million, with India’s exports increasing 40.4 per cent to $469 million, while imports from Bhutan rose 87 per cent to $281 million.

GMR GROUP GETS COMPENSATION IN MALDIVES

  • GMR Group has been awarded compensation worth $270 million by a three-member international arbitral tribunal in its dispute with the Maldives government.
  • The award won by GMR Male International Airport Limited (GMIAL) relates to the cancellation of airport development contract by the Maldives government in November 2012.
  • The compensation covers the debt, equity invested in the project along with a return of 17 per cent and termination payments and legal costs.
  • GMIAL entered into a concession pact with the Maldives government and Maldives Airport Company Limited to modernise and operate the Ibrahim Nasir Intwernational Airport in 2010 for 25 years.

CENTRE MADE A CAUTIOUS MOVE TOWARDS LARGE SCALE DISINVESTMENT

  • The Centre made a cautious move towards large scale disinvestment of public sector units with in-principle agreement to a case-by-case examination of the 20-odd firms and units recommended for strategic sale by NITI Aayog.
  • The recommendations of the NITI Aayog with regard to both disinvestment and strategic sales came up for consideration before the cabinet,” Mr. Jaitley said.
  • The Centre had set a target to raise Rs.20,500 crore in 2017-18 through strategic sales of public sector firm and another Rs.36,000 crore is to be raised from the sale of minority stakes in PSUs.
  • Mr. Jaitley acknowledged that some of the units recommended for sale by the Aayog are ‘important’ and each unit will be considered on ‘its own merit’ with the timing of the sale to be decided accordingly.
  • He also assured that settled valuation procedures will be followed in a transparent process for such transactions.

:: IMPORTANT DETAILED NEWS ::

ICGS ARYAMAN AND ATULYA COMMISSIONED INTO INDIAN COAST GUARD

The Indian Coast Guard Ships (ICGS) Aryaman and Atulya were commissioned at Kochi by Sunil Kumar Kohli, Financial Advisor to Defence Services.

The ICGS Aryaman and Atulya are the eighteenth and nineteenth respectively in the series of twenty Fast Patrol Vessels (FPVs). They are designed and built by Cochin Shipyard Limited.

Key highlights of Aryaman and Atulya

The ships have been christened ICGS Aryaman and Atulya.

• Aryaman literally means Possessor of Greatness. It will be based at Kochi under the administrative control of the Commander, Coast Guard Region (West).

• Atulya means Unrivalled. It will be based at Visakhapatnam under the administrative control of the Commander, Coast Guard Region (East).

ICGS Aryaman is commanded by Commandant Neeraj Singh and ICGS Atulya by Commandant (JG) Shivprasad.

The ships have a complement of 5 officers and 33 enrolled personnel each.

The 50m long indigenous FPVs displace 317 tonnes of water and can achieve a maximum speed of 33 knots with range of 1500 nautical miles at an economical speed of 13 knots.

They are equipped with state-of-the-art weaponry, advanced communication and navigational equipment.

The ships are ideal platform for undertaking multifarious close-coast missions such as surveillance, search and rescue and interdiction.

They include an Integrated Bridge Management System (IBMS) and Integrated Machinery Control System (IMCS).

DOCTORS FROM AIIMS AND SGRH CHOSEN FOR DR BC ROY AWARD

Two doctors each from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH) were selected for the prestigious Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy Award for excellence in the field of medicine.

Randeep Guleria, Head of Pulmonology, and CS Yadav of Department of Orthopaedics from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences were selected for the award.

Chairman of Board of Management at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital D S Rana and Arvind Kumar were also chosen for the coveted award.

The awards will be presented by the President in July 2017.

About the Bidhan Chandra Roy Award

The Bidhan Chandra Roy Award was instituted in 1976 by Medical Council of India.

It was instituted in the memory of renowned physician and freedom fighter B C Roy.

The Award is given annually in each of the following categories: Statesmanship of the Highest Order in India, Medical man-cum-Statesman, Eminent Medical Person, Eminent person in Philosophy, Eminent person in Science and Eminent person in Arts.

It is presented by the President of India in New Delhi on 1 July, National Doctors' Day.

INDO-ITALY SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNOLOGICAL COOPERATION RE-LAUNCHED

The Indo-Italian Joint Committee established under the Scientific and Technological Cooperation Agreement re-launched the cooperation in the sectors of science, technology and innovation. The original agreement was signed between Italy and India in 2003.

The Indian delegation was led by Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology while the Italian delegation was led by Vincenzo De Luca, Director General for Cultural and Economic Promotion and Innovation of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

Highlights of the Indo-Italy Scientific and Technological Cooperation

• The Joint Committee approved several initiatives in bilateral scientific R&D projects of significance with the aim of facilitating the mobility of researchers who will be jointly selected within the framework of the 2017-2019 Indo-Italy Executive Programme of Scientific and Technological Cooperation.

• IT, energy, environment and sustainable agriculture, health care, biotechnology, nanotechnology, physics and cultural and natural heritage are the areas for joint projects.

• A new scientific and technological cooperation programme on applied science was launched aiming at developing technologies and processes to be applied in industry.

• Joint workshops will be alternatively held in Italy and India, starting from 2017.

• An Indo-Italian Innovation Forum will be established to promote and connect the world of research with the world of business and investment.

54 EMINENT PERSONALITIES SELECTED FOR UP'S YASH BHARTI AWARDS 2016

The Uttar Pradesh government declared the list of Yash Bharati awardees 2016. 54 personalities were selected for the coveted award for the year 2016-17.

Bollywood actor Naseeruddin Shah, PayTM CEO Vijay Shekhar, Paralympic athlete Varun Kumar, Qawwaali singers Aftab and Hashim (Sabri Brothers), film director Saurabh Shukla and Atul Tiwari were some of the prominent names.

Details of some prominent awardees

• Apart from this, the list included the names of Swaroop Kumari Bakshi for literature and Beghum Habibullah for social service.

• Lieutenant General Anil Chait, who was also the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief has been given the award for Military Service.

• Cricketers Gyanendra Pandey, Bhuwaneshwar Kumar, Praveen Kumar and Piyush Chawla (Cricketer) also figure in the list of awardees.

• Some of the other prominent awardees are Rajendra Singh (Water Conservationist), Anil Rastogi (Theatre and acting in films), Suman Yadav (Sports), Syed Mohd Basheer Badr (Literature & Education), Swaroop Kumari Bakshi (Literature) and Anubhav Sinha (Film Director).

• Pandit Vishwanath (Classical Music), Ustad Gulfam (classical music), Kashinath Yadav (Birha Folk Music), Mohd Aslam Warsi (Sufi Music), Kewal Kumar (Music Direction & Singing) were from the field of Music.

• Sabiha Anwar (Education & Literature), Yogesh Mishra (Journalism & Literature), Rajkrishna Mishra (Literature), Manendra Kumar Mishra (Writer), Maheshwar Tiwari (Literature), Sarvesh Asthana (Literature), Oma Dapak (Literature) were some of awardees from field of literature.

• Prof Rakesh Kapoor, Deepak Agarwal, Dr Ramratan Banerjee, Syed Muhammed Hassan were awarded in the field of medicine.

• The other winners are Ashok Nigam (Journalist), Arjun Bajpai (Mountaineer), Gargi Yadav (Wrestling), Dr Ramakant Yadav (Medical University Saifai), Atma Prakash Mishra (Doordarshan Lucknow) and Gaurdas Chaudhary (Doctor).

About Yash Bharti Awards

• Yash Bharti Awards was instituted by Mulayam Singh Yadav Government in 1994.

• The award is conferred by the Uttar Pradesh Government for excellence in literature, fine arts, folk and classical music and sports.

• The award carries cash prize of 11 lakh rupees, a citation and a shawl.

• The award was discontinued by the Bahujan Samaj Party Government from 2007-2013, but later it was revived after a gap of six years.

 

 

 

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