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September 09, 2015

8th September 2015 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • Today (8th September) is International Literacy Day.
    • This day was started by UNESCO on November 17, 1965.
    • Its aim is to highlight the importance of literacy to individuals, communities and societies.
    • On International Literacy Day each year, UNESCO reminds the international community of the status of literacy and adult learning globally. 
    • This event will also mark the 50th anniversary of the World Congress of Ministers of Education on the Eradication of Illiteracy (Islamic Republic of Iran, 1965), which made the Tehran recommendation on the proclamation of the International Literacy Day and advanced the notion of functional literacy. 
    • Themes of International Literacy Day
      • Theme for 2006 : “Literacy sustains development” 
      • Theme for 2007 and 2008  : “Literacy and Health” 
      • Theme for 2009-2010  : “Literacy and Empowerment” 
      • Theme for 2011-2012  : “Literacy and Peace” 
      • The theme for 2013  : “Literacies for the 21st Century” 
      • Theme for 2014  : “Literacy and Sustainable Development”
      • Theme for 2015 : "Literacy and Sustainable Societies"
  • India has announced a cash assistance of $ 500,000 to Jordan to meet enormous impact of Syrian refugee crisis.
    • This cash assistance is part of the pledge made by India at the 3rd Pledging Conference on Syria held in Kuwait in March.
    • More than four million Syrians have been forced out of their home country since fighting began there in 2011 and many were hastily resettled in squalid refugee camps in neighbouring countries including Jordan.
  • Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has won a second consecutive term as president of the ruling Liberal Democrats' Party (LDP).

National Affairs
  • Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley has launched the electronic version of the Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi (CWMG), which document the leader's life from 1884 till his demise on January 30, 1948.
    • The minister also announced that the Hindi version of CWMG would be digitised soon.
    • Important Points to Note :
    • The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi took about 38 years in the making (1956-1994). 
    • They are a series of 100 volumes, running into over 55,000 pages, intricately connected across the series, as an integrated whole.
    • You can read them from here.
  • Haryana govt has completely banned the manufacturing, storage, distribution & sale of gutka, pan masala, flavoured or scented tobacco, kharra and other similar products containing tobacco for one year from September 3, 2015 in the interest of public health.
  • The Andhra Pradesh government has signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS).
    • This MoU envisages implementation of programme activities of 'Andhra Pradesh University Students Employability Skill Development Programme,' a flagship initiative of the state government.

Awards & Honors
  • President Pranab Mukherjee presented the Saakshar Bharat Awards 2015 at the International Literacy Day Celebrations organized by Union Ministry of Human Resource Development.
    • He gave away 11 Saakshar Bharat Awards 2014 to State, Districts, Blocks, Gram Panchayats, State Resource Centre (SRC) and Jan Shikshan Sansthan (JSS) for their best performance in the field of adult education.
    • Saakshar Bharat Awards 2014 were given in following categories:
      • State - State Literacy Mission Authorities (SLMAs)
      • District - Zilla Lok Shiksha Samitis (ZLSSs)
      • Gram Panchayat - Gram Lok Shiksha Samitis (GLSSs)
      • Resource Support Organisations like University Dept. of Adult & Continuing Education, SRCs, JSSs, NGOs and other organisations.

New Appointments
  • Mumbai Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria, who was heading the Sheena Bora Murder probe has been promoted to DG Home Guard.
    • Note : Maharashtra government later announced that Rakesh Maria will continue to lead investigation in Sheena Bora murder case despite his transfer on promotion.
  • Ahmed Javed will be replacing Rakesh Maria as the Mumbai Commissioner of Police.

Business & Economy
  • Seven Indians feature in Forbes Asia's ninth Heroes of Philanthropy list, highlighting most noteworthy contributions to philanthropy from 13 countries across Asia Pacific. 
    • Note : Four of the list are co-founders of Infosys, one of India's largest information technology (IT) services companies.
    • Kerala-born entrepreneur Sunny Varkey, who in June pledged about half of his USD 2.25 billion dollar fortune to charity as part of Bill Gates and Warren Buffet-led Giving Pledge initiative, tops the list of philanthropists in the region. 
      • He is the founder of GEMS Education, a chain of 70 private schools in 14 counties.
    • Infosys co-founders Senapathy Gopalakrishnan, Nandan Nilekani and S D Shibulal feature on the list for their individual contributions to the health and education sectors. 
    • Another Infosys co-founder N R Narayana Murthy's son Rohan is on the list for donating a whopping USD 5.2 million to Harvard University Press for promoting ancient Indian literary classics. 
      • He represents his father NR Narayana Murthy as a philanthropist.
    • The other two Indian philanthropists are brothers Suresh Ramakrishnan and Mahesh Ramakrishnan, both London-based entrepreneurs and founders of Whitcomb & Shaftesbury Tailors on London's Saville Row. 
      • They donated USD 3 million for training of more than 4,000 people in tailoring across India. Beneficiaries include the 2004 tsunami victims and "ill-fated" women.

  • Indian weightlifter Deepak Lather wins Gold Medal in fifth Youth Commonwealth Games in Apia.
    • This was India's second gold in weightlifting after Jamjang Deru stood atop the podium in the 56 kg category on the opening day of the event. 
  • In the US Open Tennis, Rohan Bopanna and Leander Paes win their respective mixed double matches to enter semi-finals.
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