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January 02, 2016

2nd January 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • India and Pakistan have exchanged the list of their Nuclear Installations under a bilateral agreement that bars them from attacking each other’s atomic facilities.
    • This is the 24th consecutive exchange of such list between the two countries.
    • The agreement, which was signed on 31st December 1988 and entered into force on 27th January 1991, says that the two countries inform each other of nuclear installations and facilities to be covered under the Agreement on January 1 every year.
  • Pakistan and Afghanistan have established a hotline between their respective military commanders.

Business & Economy
  • After the success of paying subsidy to LPG users in their bank accounts, the government will from April 1 roll out a similar programme for kerosene where the users will buy the cooking fuel at market rate but will get financial support directly in their bank accounts.
    • The cash subsidy to be paid to users will be equivalent to the difference between current PDS price of about Rs 12 and market rate of Rs 43 per litre.
  • Govt hikes excise duty on petrol by 37 paise per litre and by Rs 2 a litre on diesel.
    • This is the second increase in duties in just over two weeks. 
  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has asked reaming banks to open more brick and mortar branches in villages with no banking facilities and with a population of more than 5,000.
    • The banking regulator has asked banks to submit a roadmap on how many branches they will be opening by 31 March 2017
    • Banks have to submit the roadmap by end of January 2016.

Awards & Honors
  • Carnatic vocalist from India, Sanjay Subrahmanyam has been conferred with the prestigious Sangita Kalanidhi award 2015. 
    • About Sangita Kalanidhi award:
      • This is the highest honour given to Carnatic musicians in India
      • The first recipients of the award were T.V. Subba Rao, Vidvan T.S. Sabhesa Iyer, and M.S. Ramaswamy Iyer. (They were awarded in the year 1929)
      • The award comprises of a gold medal and a 'birudu patra'
      • Not only singers, but instrumentalists of Carnatic music also receive the award

People in News

  • Arunima Sinha‬, the amputee mountaineer who set a record by climbing the Mount Everest, has added another feather in her cap by conquering Mount Aconcagua in Argentina.
    • Note : Aconcagua is the highest mountain outside Asia, at 6,960.8 metres, and by extension, the highest point in both the Western Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere.

Science & Technology
  • RIKEN group, a Japanese team led by Kosuke Morita, has received official credit for the discovery of element 113, making the group the first in Asia to have its accomplishments enshrined in the periodic table.
    • Note : Element 113 has become the first element on the periodic table found in Asia. 

  • Veteran CPI leader A B Bardhan (Ardhendu Bhushan Bardhan) passed away.
    • He has been a leading figure of the trade union movement and Left politics in Maharashtra. 
    • He had won as an Independent candidate in Maharashtra Assembly polls in 1957. 
  • Natalie Cole, the singer of R&B hits like "Our Love" and "This Will Be" passed away.
    • She was the daughter of jazz legend Nat King Cole.

New Appointments
  • Air Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria today took over as Deputy Chief of the Air Staff, a post that oversees the critical procurement process of the force.
    • An alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Bhadauria was commissioned in the IAF in June 1980.
    • Prior to taking over as DCAS, he was Senior Air Staff Officer at Central Air Command of IAF.

  • National Twenty20 cricket championship for Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy began today.

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