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July 20, 2016

20th July 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • India has ranked lowest among the 43 nations listed in the Natixis Global Asset Management's 2016 Global Retirement Index (GRI), making it the worst country to retire. 
    • India had the worst Health and Life Quality Index. 
    • In last year's GRI, India ranked 88 among the 150 countries. 
    • Note : Norway was named the best country for retirement.
  • TripAdvisor has ranked Mumbai the second cheapest city for travellers, with an estimated cost of $767 for a three-night stay in a four-star hotel, tourist activities and food. 
    • Meanwhile, the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi has topped the list with an estimated cost of $674.
    • Tops 5 in the list :
      • Hanoi
      • Mumbai
      • Cape Town
      • Kuala Lumpur 
      • Bangkok
  • Brazil today ordered phone carriers to block access to Whatsapp, following the company's refusal to comply with a previous court order to reveal user information. 

National Affairs
  • Pema Khandu-led government today passed the floor test in Arunachal Pradesh Assembly with 46 MLAs voting in favour of the Chief Minister. 
    • From the Opposition BJP, 11 members voted against it in the 60-member House. 
    • Khandu (37) was elected as the new leader of Congress legislature party after Supreme Court restored the Congress government in the state.
  • The BJP MPs will take out 'Tiranga Yatra' (flag processions) in their respective constituencies  
Awards & Honors
  • Rohit Khandelwal (26) today became the first Indian to win the 'Mr World' title at this year's male beauty pageant held in Southport, England.
    •  The 26-year-old actor from Hyderabad won a cash prize of $50,000 while beating 45 other contestants to win the title. 
    • Rohit became eligible for the competition by winning the 'Mr India World' 2015 title.
  • The Oberoi Hotels & Resorts has been voted 'The World's Best Hotel Brand' for the second year in a row by the readers of the Travel + Leisure magazine. 
    • The Oberoi Group operates over 30 luxury hotels across India, Mauritius, Indonesia, Dubai, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. 
    • Hotel chains Oetker Collection and Aman Resorts were ranked second and third respectively.

Awards & Honors
  • Nigerian journalist and presenter Didi Akinyelure has won the second BBC World News Komla Dumor Award
    • As part of the award, she will start a three-month placement at the BBC in London in September 2016. 
    • It will provide her opportunity to gain skills and experience by attending a course with BBC Academy.

General Knowledge
  • On this day (20th July) in the year 1969, astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins aboard the Apollo 11 spacecraft became the first humans to land on the moon
    • The spacecraft lifted-off on July 16 and traveled 3,84,400 km to reach the lunar orbit. 
    • Armstrong stepped out of the spacecraft on July 21 to become the first man to walk on the moon.
  • The Soviet Union launched the first living being, Laika, a dog, into earth's orbit in 1957
    • The dog could not survive the mission, as technology had not been developed for the return. 
    • Subsequently, Yuri Gagarin became the first human to orbit the earth in 1961, and Neil Armstrong the first to set foot on the moon on July 20, 1969.
  • India won six consecutive Olympic gold medals in hockey, beginning with the 1928 Olympics to the 1956 Olympics.
    • The team remained unbeaten in 24 matches, scoring 178 goals in the process and conceding just seven. 
    • Late hockey captain Mohammed Shahid was a part of the 1980 Moscow Olympics gold-medal-winning team, which was India's last Olympic medal-winning hockey team.

Business & Economy
  • State Bank of India (SBI) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Canada-based Brookfield Asset Management Inc to form a joint venture which will independently evaluate and invest in various stressed assets in the country. 
    • Brookfield will commit about ₹7,000 crore to the venture, while SBI will contribute up to 5% of its total investments.
  • Mumbai’s Siddhivinayak Temple has opened a demat account to enable its devotees to offer shares of listed companies as donations
    • Note : In 2015, Andhra Pradesh-based Tirumala Venkateswara Temple had also started accepting shares as donations.
  • The International Monetary Fund (IMF) today trimmed India's growth forecast by 0.1% to 7.4% for both 2016-17 and 2017-18, reflecting "sluggish investment recovery" in the economy. 
    • This figure is lower than the 7.6% growth registered in 2015-16. 
    • Further, the IMF cut global economic growth by 0.1% for 2016 to 3.1%, owing to uncertainty arising from 'Brexit'.

  • Mohammed Shahid (56), who was a part of the 1980 Moscow Olympics gold-winning Indian hockey team, passed away today. 
    • Shahid, who was considered among India's best hockey players, had received the Arjuna Award in 1981.
  • Mohammad Hashim Ansari (95), the oldest litigant in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri masjid dispute, died today.
    • He had been associated with the case since December 1949. 
    • In 2010, Allahabad High Court's verdict equally divided the disputed land among Nirmohi Akhara, the Waqf Board and the side representing Ram Lalla.
New Appointments
  • The Sikkim government has reconstituted the Police Accountability Commission with Justice Malay Sengupta, a retired Judge of the Sikkim High Court, as its Chairperson
    • The commission will inquire into allegations of misconduct against police personnel, on its own or based on complaints.
  • Steve Elworthy, an England Cricket Board official and ex-South African player, has been appointed the Managing Director of the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup, which will be held in England and Wales.
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