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March 19, 2015

19th March 2015 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • IMF chief Christine Lagarde's China visit begins today
    • During this visit she will meet top Chinese leadership and senior officials.
  • Sri Lankan government has said that it may lift a ban on several Tamil diaspora groups and individuals imposed by the previous Mahinda Rajapaksa regime for their alleged links to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to achieve reconciliation with the country’s largest ethnic minority.
    • Srilankan Foreign Minister : Mangala Samaraweera  
National Affairs
  • International Conference on Counter Terrorism begins in Jaipur.
    • Inaugurated by : Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.
    • This conference is a global platform for imminent scholars, strategic thinkers, field experts and policy makers engaged in counter terrorism activities from various government agencies, think tanks, academic and research institutions from all over the world.
  • 1st National  Photography &  Videography Workshop began at New Delhi.
    • Organized by : Ministry of Information & Broadcasting
    • Inaugurated by : Minister of State for Information & Broadcasting, Col. (Retd.), Rajyavardhan Rathore 
  • A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) and the Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India (DFCCIL) at Delhi today for creation of logistic hubs with rail connectivity at Varanasi and other places on National Waterways. 
    • The MoU was signed in the presence of Minister of Shipping and Road Transport & Highways Nitin Gadkari and Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhu
  • The Lok Sabha has passed the Warehousing Corporations (Amendment) Bill, 2015
    • This bill seeks to amend the Warehousing Corporations Act, 1962, which established central and state warehousing corporations for the purpose of warehousing agricultural produce and other commodities. 
  • IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad launched, a public policy portal that attempts to put into perspective policy matters using an “ancient yet contemporary” approach.
  • To avoid confusion in the minds of the electorate in constituencies where namesakes are contesting, the Election Commission has decided that ballot papers will also carry pictures of the contestants besides their names and party symbols.
    • An EC direction to all Chief Electoral Officers of states and UTs said that for elections to be held from May 1, 2015 onwards, the ballot papers, postal ballot papers and ballot papers to be displayed on EVMs will also carry the photographs of the candidates.
    • The photograph will appear between the name of the candidate and his or her election symbol.
New Appointments
  • Ratan Tata, former chairman of Tata Sons was appointed as the head of 'Kayakulp'  Council,
    an innovation council of the Indian Railways.
    • Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu constituted the 'Kayakulp' Council and appointed Tata to head it. 
    • The purpose of the Council is to recommend innovative methods and processes for the improvement, betterment and transformation of the Indian Railways.
  • Nobel Laureate, Deputy Director of the British Medical Research Council’s Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, and Fellow of the Royal Society, Sir Venkatraman (Venky) Ramakrishnan has been confirmed as President Elect of the Royal Society.
    • The India-born scientist will take over his new appointment on December 1, 2015 replacing the eminent geneticist Sir Paul Nurse.
    • Professor Ramakrishnan’s work, which won him the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2009 (shared with Tom Steitz and Ada Yonath), is on the structure and function of the ribosome, the molecular machine that synthesises proteins inside cells, and on the action of antibiotics on the process.
  • World Cup
    • India storm into semifinals, defeating Bangladesh by 109 runs
    • Rohit Sharma's (Man of the Match) 137 lead the country to its seventh win in a row in the World Cup.
    • MS Dhoni becomes the first Indian captain to lead India to 100 ODI wins.
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