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July 19, 2016

19th July 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • With 35 sites in UNESCO's World Heritage list, India has the sixth highest number of culturally and historically important places in the world. 
    • This comes after UNESCO recently added three Indian sites, including the Nalanda University, to the list. 
    • Top 5 Countries ahead of India are, 
      • Italy (51)
      • China (50)
      • Spain (45)
      • France (42) 
      • Germany (41)
  • India and Malaysia have agreed to "proactively" engage in combating the "menace" of ISIS activities​. 
    • At a delegation level meeting between the two countries, Home Minister Rajnath Singh stressed on strong intelligence sharing to stop the propagation of ISIS ideology. 
    • The two sides also discussed issues like Extradition Treaty and the circulation of fake Indian currency notes.
National Affairs
  • The Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012, was passed in the Rajya Sabha today. 
    • Amending the Child Labour Act, 1986, the Bill seeks to prohibit the employment of children below 14 years in "all" occupations and increases the penalty for violations from 6 months to 2 years. 
    • The bill will now be discussed in the Lok Sabha.
  • India's first paperless court was inaugurated at the Hyderabad High Court by Justice Madan B Lokur, who heads the Supreme Court's e-Committee. 
    • The paperless court, which began functioning yesterday, uses digitised case records to allow "better access to justice for public". 
  • 'Amudham Thaippal Maiyam' (ATM), a bank which offers mother's milk, has been opened in Puducherry. 
    • The initiative by Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research aims to provide nourishment to save premature babies born in the hospital as 30% of 1,500 babies born there per month are of low birth weight.
  • Judges at the Calcutta High Court have unanimously "declined to accept" the Centre's recent proposal to rename the court to 'Kolkata HC
    • The judges cited the court's "long history and tradition associated with the existing name" as the reason for the denial. 
  • The Parliament has passed the Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill, 2016 to provide statutory status to the existing Regional Centre for Biotechnology in Faridabad, Haryana. 
    • The Bill seeks to provide legislative backing to the Regional Centre and also confers upon it the status of an institution of national importance.
  • The Indian Railways has initiated process to launch the Terrain Imaging for Diesel Drivers- Infrared Enhanced Optical and Radar Assisted (Tri-NETRA) system to avoid train accidents. 
    • The system will be installed on locomotives for enhancing the vision of Locomotive Pilots in inclement weather.
Business & Economy
  • Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency (MUDRA) CEO Jiji Mammen today announced that the government has set a target for banks to disburse ₹1.8 lakh crore as loans under the MUDRA scheme during 2016-17. 
    • Note : The banks disbursed ₹25,000 crore in the June quarter.
  • In line with the announcements under the Indradhanush initiative and the Budget, the Centre has allocated ₹22,915 crore for the capitalisation of 13 public sector banks for the year 2016-17. 
    • This will provide liquidity support and allow banks to raise capital from markets. 
    • The amount released is 75% of that collected for each bank and the remaining will be performance-linked.
    • Check complete bank-wise allocation details from here
Places in New
  • Sikkim's Khangchendzonga National Park has been designated as India's first “Mixed" site on the UNESCO World Heritage List, by fulfilling the criteria under both Natural and Cultural heritage. 
    • Important Points to Note :
    • Earlier, Chandigarh's Capitol Complex and Nalanda University were also added to the list. 
    • With this, India now has 35 sites on the World Heritage List, including seven natural and 27 cultural sites.
People in News
  • Tamil Nadu's Sri Ram S emerged the national topper of the 2016 Chartered Accountants final examination as the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India declared the results yesterday. 
    • Securing 76.63% marks, Sri Ram cleared the exam in his first attempt. 
    • Andhra Pradesh's KNVV Upendra (76.25%) and Gujarat's Yash Manojkumar Goyal (74.88%) were ranked second and third respectively.
New Appointments
  • The World Bank (WB) today confirmed New York University's economics professor Paul Romer as its next Chief Economist
    • Romer will take the post in September and replace Kaushik Basu, an ex-Chief Economic Adviser to the Indian government. 
  • Senior IAS officer Guruprasad Mohapatra was appointed as Chairman of Airports Authority of India (AAI)
  • Malcolm Turnbull was sworn in for another term as Australia’s Prime Minister after a narrow election victory with budget repair and a public vote on same sex marriage among his top priorities.
  • Ghazal maestro and playback singer Mubarak Begum Shaikh (80) passed away. 
    • She was known for songs including 'Woh Na Aayenge Palat Kar' from the 1955 film 'Devdas' and 'Kabhi Tanhaiyon Mein' from the 1961 film 'Hamari Yaad Aayegi'. 
    • She sang for over 110 films in her career of over four decades.
  • The Pakistan Cricket Board has started a ‘Misbah Push-Up Challenge’, after Pakistani captain Misbah-ul-Haq celebrated his century at Lord’s with 10 push-ups last week. 
    • The challenge requires people to post videos of themselves doing ten push-ups with the hashtag #PushUpChallenge.
  • WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) recommends banning Russia from Olympics and Paralympics after evidence is found of a four-year state-sponsored doping programme
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