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June 20, 2016

20th June 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • Today (20th June 2016) is World Refugee Day.
    • This day is observed by the United Nation High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
    • This day is dedicated to raising awareness of the situation of refugees throughout the world.
    • The decision to observe the day, coinciding with Africa Refugee Day, was made by the UN in December 2000.
    • The first World Refugee Day marked the 50th anniversary of the UN Refugee Convention.
    • Theme of the year 2016 : We Stand Together With Refugee

National Affairs
  • The Assam Government has launched a unique initiative ‘Maitree Ek Gyan Yatra’ to link primary schools to high schools to colleges. 
    • The purpose of the programme is to change the mindset of the teachers, as in some places in states teachers of a school considered it below their dignity to teach the lower level students.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi today released postage stamps on Surya Namaskara to mark the 2nd International Yoga Day to be celebrated on June 21. 
    • The stamps, of ₹5 and ₹25, depict the 12 ‘asanas’ constituting the Surya Namaskara. 
  • The Himachal Pradesh government has launched a ₹640 crore project for Skill Dvelopment under which multipurpose training centres will be set up in rural areas
    • The training, to be given by both government and private associations, will be accessible to all people aged between 16-49, including BPL families. 
    • Individuals will be trained in tourism, agriculture and banking sectors, among others.

Business & Economy
  • The government has announced that it will set up a new Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) to sell its shares in Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) and other private companies, as part of its ₹56,500 crore disinvestment target for the 2016-17 fiscal. 
    • Note : ETFs are investment vehicles which hold assets like stocks or bonds and are traded on a stock exchange.
    Israel has approved additional funds of $18 million for construction of settlements in the West Bank
    • According to reports, $88 million have already been allotted for settlements earlier. 
    • Note : These settlements in the West Bank are considered illegal according to international law and the United States and the European Union have called for their construction to be halted.

Awards & Honors
  • The 'Panama Papers' investigation, which revealed details of offshore entities owned by people across the world, won the Investigation of the Year award for the year 2016.
    • This award was presented at the Global Editors Network summit in Vienna
    • Important Points to Note : 
      • 'Panama Papers' was the biggest ever data leak since 2015.
      • The investigation was a collaboration of over 100 media organisations, with Indian Express being the Indian partner.

People in News
  • The Anti Corruption Branch of Delhi has registered a case against former Chief Minister Shiela Dikshit and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in connection with Rs 400 crore water tanker scam.

Science & Technology
  • Chinese supercomputer Sunway TaihuLight, built at a cost of around $270 million (approximately ₹1,820 crore), has topped the list of the world's fastest computers
    • It is almost 3 times faster than the previous record-holder Tianhe-2 and is almost five times faster than the quickest US computing system.
  • Public sector aerospace and defence major Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has unveiled indigenous Basic Trainer Aircraft (BTA) HTT-40 in Bengaluru. 
    • The aircraft made its maiden flight recently the HAL Airport in Bengaluru in presence of Union Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar
  • French firm Cooltech Applications has launched what it claims as the world's first commercially available magnetic refrigeration system
    • It achieves refrigeration by passing a water coolant through magnetocaloric materials undergoing repeated magnetization-demagnetization cycles. 
    • The system works without any refrigerant gas, making it more environmentally efficient than conventional refrigerators.
  • The 48-hour long countdown for Wednesday's launch of record 20 Satellites by ISRO from Sriharikota began at 9:26 this morning.
    • Workhorse PSLV C34 will carry the satellites and inject them into the 505 km sun synchronous orbit one after the other.
    • Note : The 20 satellites include Cartosat-2 Series remote sensing payload of India for earth observation purposes, two Indian students satellites and 17 other micro and nano satellites of foreign customers from US, Canada, Germany and Indonesia.

Deaths
  • Actor Anton Yelchin (27), who portrayed the character 'Pavel Chekov' in the 'Star Trek' reboot series, died following an accident.

New Appointments
  • Virginia Raggi has been elected as Rome's first female mayor.
  • Businessman Bipin R Patel was appointed as the President of Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) for the term 2016-17.
    • He is going to replace Rohit J Patel.

Sports
  • Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg (Germany) has won the 2016 European Grand Prix of Formula One.
  • The Indian mixed recurve team of Deepika Kumari and Atanu Das has won the Silver medal at the Archery World Cup held in Antalya, Turkey. 
  • Japanese footballer Kazuyoshi Miura has broken his own record to become the oldest goalscorer in Japan’s football league.
    • Miura, aged 49 years, is currently the world’s oldest active football player, and is playing in his 31st season as a professional. 
    • Before retiring internationally, Miura scored 55 goals in 89 appearances for Japan.
  • Cleveland Cavaliers today defeated defending champions Golden State Warriors 93-89 in the seventh game of the NBA finals to win the championship title for the first time in the franchise history. 
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