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July 24, 2016

24th July 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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National Affairs
  • The Cabinet Committee on Security, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved 12 India Reserve Battalions for Left Wing Extremism affected​ states
    • The government has also given an approval to the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) for raising a ‘Bastariya’ battalion comprising only of tribals, which will be stationed for five years in Chhattisgarh.
  • According to government data as of March 2016, Tamil Nadu had the maximum number of urban internet subscribers in India, accounting for over 21 million of a total 231 million urban subscribers in the country. 
    • Note : Maharashtra and Delhi had 19.7 million and 19.6 million subscribers respectively, followed by Karnataka with 17 million.
  • Railway minister Suresh Prabhu today inaugurated India’s first 'green train corridor' – a 114-km stretch between Rameswaram and Manamadurai in Tamil Nadu. 
    • Important Note : A green corridor or zero toilet discharge section envisages that all trains on that route will have bio-toilets, thereby eliminating open discharge of waste on the tracks.
    • Railways has provided 40,750 bio-toilets in trains, as of June-end.
  • The government has allowed the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to handle Aadhaar enrolment in 10 states where it was being done by the Registrar-General of India until now. 
    • Note : Currently, UIDAI is not allowed to conduct Aadhaar enrolment only in Assam and Meghalaya. 
    • This reportedly is aimed at achieving PM Modi's target of complete Aadhaar enrolment by March 2017.
  • Kerala Government has launched Kochi Water Metro project, the first ever Water Metro project in the country
    • It was launched by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan at Kochi. The project aims to provide water connectivity to people living between islands in the Kochi agglomeration area and the city. 

Recent Committees in News
  • The Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation has constituted a 4 Member Committee to prepare guidelines for desiltation of Ganga River
    • The committee has to , 
      • Prepare guidelines for desiltation of Ganga River from Bhimgauda (Uttarakhand) to Farakka (West Bengal)
      • Establish difference between desilting and sand mining
      • Establish need for desilting for ecology and e-flow of the river Ganga.
    • The tenure of the committee would be for a period of three months. 
    • The committee will be headed by : Madhav Chitale (Expert Member of NGRBA)

Science & Technology
  • ISRO and NASA are jointly working to develop a Satellite for mapping natural resources.
    • The satellite, named NISAR, is expected to be completed and launched by 2021.
    • ISRO will be responsible for some of the satellite's design and development, and all in-orbit operations.
    • NISAR - NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar
  • China has unveiled AG600, the world's largest aircraft which can land on both water and land
    • The aircraft, about the size of a Boeing 737, is meant for fighting forest fires and performing marine rescue missions.
    • It can collect 12 tonnes of water in 20 seconds, and has a maximum flight range of 4,500 km.
  • The Union Ministry of Science and Technology, today launched a ‘Solar Power Tree’ in Delhi to generate electricity in a limited space. 
    • The tree takes 4 square feet to generate 5 kW of power compared to 400 square feet of land required conventionally. 
    • The tree has a battery backup of 2 hours under full load.

Business & Economy
  • The Managing Director of HDFC bank, Aditya Puri is the highest paid banker in India with a total package of ₹31.53 crore, according to VCCircle's analysis. 
    • Chanda Kochhar, MD and CEO of ICICI bank, came next with a ₹18.59-crore total package. 
    • Note : Top private banks, except Kotak Mahindra, offered 20-30% pay hike on cash compensation to CEOs in 2015-16.

  • Mumbai Police dog Tiger (12), who served during the 26/11 terror attacks, died today.
    • The black labrador was the third 26/11 dog to die in the past four months after Max and Sultan.

Awards & Honors
  • A. Kanyakumari is set to become the first female violinist to be honoured with the 'Sangita Kalanidhi' title by the Madras Music Academy. 
    • The title, considered a prestigious award in Carnatic music, will be conferred on Kanyakumari on January 1, 2017. 
  • Based on the ratings and reviews of waterparks around the world, TripAdvisor has named the Siam Park in the Spanish town of Adeje the world's best waterpark for the third year consecutively. 
    • The Waterbom Bali in Kuta village, Indonesia and the Aquaventure Waterpark in Dubai, United Arab Emirates were placed second and third respectively.
  • Indian Arabic calligrapher Muqtar Ahmed has won the 2nd prize at the Cairo International Festival for Arabic Calligraphy in Egypt.  
    • A total of 115 calligraphers took part in the contest, which was won by Khalid Mohammad from Egypt.
  • Renowned Music Director and singer Bapi Lahiri was honoured with Mahanayak award by the West Bengal Government. 
    • Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee conferred the Mahanayak Samman upon Bapi Lahiri on the occasion of 36th death anniversary of Uttam Kumar. 

General Knowledge
  • American aviator Amelia Earhart, who was born on July 24, 1897, was the first female pilot in history to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean
    • She achieved the feat in 1932 when she flew from the west coast of North America to Northern Ireland. 

  • Ex-ICC and BCCI chief Sharad Pawar (75) is going quit as the President of the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA), in accordance with the Lodha recommendations
    • Important Note : The recommendations put an age cap of 70 years and a term cap of nine years, both of which Pawar has exceeded.
  • USA's 555-member strong contingent for the Rio Olympics includes 292 females, making it the largest-ever women's contingent in Olympic history
    • The previous largest women's contingent at an Olympic event was China's 289-member strong female squad at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. 
    • Note : This is the second time where an American Olympic contingent has featured more females than males.
  • India’s Rio-bound wrestler Narsingh Yadav tested positive for the banned substance, methandienone, putting his Olympic participation in doubt. 
    • Important Note : Yadav was chosen ahead of Sushil Kumar to represent India, after earning a quota in 2015.
  • PM Narendra Modi will flag off a ‘Run for Rio’ event in New Delhi on July 31st.
    • The event, which will start from India Gate, is intended to support the Indian contingent competing at the Rio Olympics.
  • Neeraj Chopra, a 19-year-old javelin thrower from Haryana, broke the U20 javelin world record with an 86.48-metre throw at the IAAF World U20 Championships today. 
    • He became the first Indian athlete to win a World title at any level.
  • Indian para-swimmer Vishwas KS won three medals at the 2016 Speedo Can Am Para-swimming Championships in Canada last week. 
    • Vishwas won a silver medal each in 100-metre backstroke and breaststroke, and a bronze in 50-metre butterfly stroke.
    • Vishwas, who wishes to participate in the 2020 Olympics, lost both his hands when he was 10 years old.
  • The Indian men’s junior cycling team has topped the Union Cycliste Internationale world rankings, which is a first for India in the sport across any age category. 
  • Indian test team captain Virat Kohli became the first Indian captain to score a double century outside India
    • He achieved feat after scoring 200 runs against West Indies on second day of the first Test at the Sir Vivian Richards stadium in Antigua, North Sound. 
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