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May 29, 2016

29th May 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • Today is International Day of UN (United Nations) Peacekeepers.
    • United Nations observe this day  to pay tribute to all the men and women who have served in UN peacekeeping operations for their high level of professionalism, dedication, and courage and to honor the memory of those who have lost their lives in the cause of peace.
    • 2016 Theme : “Honouring Our Heroes
  • European Union (EU) officials recently announced that all scientific articles in Europe supported by public and public-private funds will be freely accessible by 2020.
    • The Competitiveness Council, which is a gathering of ministers of science, innovation, trade and industry, came to this conclusion following a two-day meeting in Brussels last week.
  • Indian Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari will leave for North Africa tomorrow on a two-nation visit to Morocco and Tunisia.
    • During the 5-day visit, he will hold deliberations with top leaders of both the countries, with an aim to give a fillip to the bilateral relations and explore new avenues of co-operation.
    • Note : The visit is the first of the series of tours to Africa which Indian leaders will undertake in the coming days.

MOUs & Agreements

  • India and Australia have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to enhance Research and Development (R&D) capabilities in biotechnology by launching a joint funding call. 
    • The MoU was signed between India’s BIRAC (Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council) and Horticulture Innovation Australia

National Affairs
  • External Affair Minister Sushma Swaraj has launched the official website of PM Narendra Modi's Office in Six regional languages.
  • The Union Ministry of Power and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) launched India’s first integrated web portal designed to promote and mainstream Net Zero Energy Buildings (NZEB) in India. 
    • The portal ( was launched by Secretary of Union Ministry of Power Pradeep Kumar Pujari and Ambassador Mr Jonathan Addleton, USAID Mission Director to India. 
  • The India Meteorological Department (IMD) is going to give state-wise monsoon forecast from 2017.
    • This move will be further extended to include other seasons from 2018-19. 
    • Note : The IMD currently gives zone-specific daily forecast during the monsoon season for regions including central India and the southern peninsula.
    • Union Minister for Earth Sciences : Harsh Vardhan. 
  • The Jammu and Kashmir government has issued a notification banning the sale of Loose Cigarettes, Beedis and Tobacco in the state with immediate effect. 
    • This is aimed at discouraging the consumption of tobacco products, especially among the youth.
    • Note : As per the Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2010, cigarette consumers in J&K are more than the national average.
  • The Odisha government has decided to grant Below Poverty Line (BPL) status to the Transgenders in the state. 
    • They will also be covered under the National Food Security Act (NFSA)
    • Note : Odisha is the first state in India to initiate such a move.

Places in News
  • Lakshadweep became first Union Territory (UT) in the counry to sign 24×7 Power for All document.
    • The document was signed by representative of Union Government and administration of Lakshadweep. 
    • At present, 10 inhabited islands of Lakshadweep are mostly fed by diesel. 

Business & Economy
  • The RBI is expected to cut the key interest rates by another 50 basis points (bps) in the ongoing fiscal, according to financial services firm Morgan Stanley. 
    • Earlier, the RBI had reduced its policy rates in April by 25 bps to 6.5%. 
    • The central bank is expected to keep the rates unchanged during its next meeting in June, it added.
  • State-owned banks installed a total of 13,935 Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) during the 2015-16 fiscal but missed their cumulative target of 15,249, according to data disclosed by 27 banks. 
    • Note : With this addition, the total number of ATMs of PSU banks rose to over 1.42 lakh at the end of March, with the country's biggest lender SBI having 49,724 ATMs.

New Appointments
  • Former IPS officer Kiran Bedi sworn in as the Lt. Governor of Puducherry.
    • Important Points to Note :
      • The post is lying vacant since the exit of Veerendra Kataria in July 2014.
      • Lt. General AK Singh, LG of Andaman and Nicobar Islands was holding the additional charge of Puducherry till now. 
  • Vice-Admiral AR Karve today took charge as the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Southern Naval Command (SNC) from Vice Admiral GirishLuthra.

Awards & Honors
  • Indian author Aditi Krishnakumar has won the prestigious 2016 Scholastic Asian Book Award
    • She has won the award for her 32,000-word manuscript titled Codex: The Lost Treasure Of The Indus
    • The manuscript will be now published by Scholastic Asia. 
  • Indian-American scientist Arnab De has received the prestigious Springer Theses Award
    • He was nominated by New York’s Columbia University for his PhD thesis. 
    • He was selected for the award for his outstanding research on developing transgenic mice to study a critical tumor-suppressor A20.
  • President of India Pranab Mukherjee presented Malti Gyan Peeth Puraskar for the year 2016 today at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
    • Important Points to Note :
      • The Malti Gyan Peeth Puraskar was instituted by Mohinder Singh Syngle Education and Research Society in honour of its founder Mrs Malti Mohinder Singh Syngle, eminent educationist and social worker.
    • Every year government school teachers from Punjab government's high and higher secondary schools receive this award for their contributions in the field of education.

  • Real Madrid FC won the 2016 UEFA Champions League for the record 11th time by defeating Atletico Madrid FC by 5-3 goals in penalty shootout. 
    • Note : Real manager Zinedine Zidane became only the seventh person in history to win the Champions League (European Cup)
  • India is the only country to have won the 60, 50 and the 20-over Cricket World Cups
    • After winning the last 60-over World Cup under Kapil Dev's leadership in 1983, India won the 20-over and 50-over World Cups under MS Dhoni's captaincy in 2007 and 2011 respectively. 
    • Note : Only the West Indies have a chance of equalling the feat.
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