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July 27, 2016

27th July 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • The World Health Organisation (WHO) has officially declared Brazil free of Measles, after no case of the disease was registered in the year 2015.
  • The two day BRICS Policy Planning Dialogue was successfully concluded in Patna, Bihar. 
    • Delegates of BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa had attended the meeting.
    • This dialogue provided a common platform to BRICS countries for sharing of best practices in foreign policy planning and assessment between the BRICS countries.
  • The New Zealand government recently announced a $20 million "world-first" project to exterminate three mammals including rats and possums, and five foreign predators from the country by 2050
    • The government reported that such species kill 25 million native New Zealand birds every year and estimated their cost to the country's economy to be around $2.30 billion a year.
National Affairs

  • Nation observes first death anniversary of former President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam.
    • A life-size statue of him was unveiled at Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu. 
      • The bronze statue was inaugurated by Union Ministers Venkaiah Naidu and Manohar Parrikar.
      • Both the ministers have also laid foundation stone for Abdul Kalam National Memorial at Rameswaram
    • Important Points to Note about Kalam :
      • He served as India's 11th President  (2002-2007).
      • He was awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1997, the Padma Vibhushan in 1990 and the Padma Bhushan in 1981.
      • He joined the ISRO in 1969 and was the project director for India’s first indigenous satellite launch vehicle programme.
      • He was a pioneer of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, India’s space workhorse.
      • He was the brain behind India’s missile programme, including Agni and Prithvi.
      • He was the chief project coordinator of the Pokhran II nuclear tests.
      • He was Chief Scientific Advisor to the Prime Minister and Secretary of the DRDO between 1992 and 1999.
      • Read more about Abdul Kalam from here
  • Parliament has passed the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill,2016 with Lok Sabha approving it today. 
    • The bill seeks to prohibit the employment of children below 14 in all occupations and enterprises, except those run by his or her own family. 
    • It seeks to make child labour a cognizable offence attracting a jail term of up to 3 years and penalty upto fifty thousand rupees. 
    • Children below 14 will be allowed to work only in family enterprises that too after school hours. 
    • The Bill also defines children between 14 to 18 years as adolescents and bars their employment in any hazardous occupations.
  • The Lok Sabha passed the Lokpal and Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill, 2016 without discussion. 
    • The bill seeks to amend the Lokpal and Lokayukta Act, 2013 which provides Lokpal (at Centre) and Lokayukta (at States) statutory backing to inquire into allegations of corruption against certain public functionaries and for related matters.
  • The Union Government has approved nearly 1,600 crore rupees for Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) under skill development initiative ‘Himayat’ programme
    • Under it, youths from both rural and urban areas of J&K would be imparted with training in various job-intensive vocational courses over the next three years. 
    • Youths enrolled for this scheme will be given training for six-months, nine-months and one year job-oriented courses.
  • The International Transgender Arts Festival, a performing arts festival for transgenders, is being organised at the National Gallery for Modern Arts in Bengaluru from July 29 to July 31. 
    • The festival, which is being referred to as "India’s first ever international performing arts festival by artistes from the transgender community", aims to showcase the talent of people from the community.
  • Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will attend Mother Teresa's sainthood ceremony on 4th September 2016 in Vatican City. 
    • He was invited by Kolkata-based Missionaries of Charity, an NGO started by Mother Teresa. 
    • Kejriwal worked for the NGO in 1992 before joining the Indian Revenue Services (IRS). 
    • Note : West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has also agreed to be present at the event.

General Knowledge
  • Human rights activist Vinoba Bhave was among the first five individuals to receive the Ramon Magsaysay Award in its year of inception in 1958
    • Bhave received the Community Leadership award for his dedication to "propagation of a new kind of social revolution in India". 
    • Important Note : A total of 55 Indians have won the Asian honour till now.

New Appointments
  • Flipkart-owned Myntra's CEO Ananth Narayanan will also take over as the CEO of online fashion retailer Jabong, which the company acquired for $70 million yesterday. 
Business & Economy
  • Yes Bank today announced that it has got an in-principle approval from capital markets regulator SEBI to sponsor a mutual fund and to set up an Asset Management Company (AMC) and a trustee company
    • The private lender had secured the RBI’s approval for the same in October 2015 and plans to commence operations within 12 months.
  • The Pharmaceuticals Sector received FDI of ₹4,975 crore in 2015-16, down from ₹9,052 crore in 2014-15, the Parliament was informed today. 
    • India’s FDI policy provides for 100% FDI under automatic route in greenfield pharma (involves start of new venture with construction of new facilities) and upto 100% under government route in brownfield pharma (involves purchase of existing facilities).
  • Forbes India has released a list of the country’s ‘Super 50 Companiesfor 2016, based on shareholder returns exhibited on the stock exchange, sales growth and return on equity over a three-year period. 
    • While TVS Motor Company offered the highest shareholder return (964%), Rajesh Exports' sales grew the most (74%), and Britannia Industries gave the maximum return on equity (60%).
People in News
  • Hillary Clinton today secured the Democratic party's nomination to become the first woman ever to be backed by a major US party for the Presidential Elections
    • Clinton secured support of 2,814 of the 4,707 Democratic delegates to beat her rival Bernie Sanders. 
    • She will face the Republican party's nominee Donald Trump in the elections scheduled for November this year.
Recent Committees in News
  • The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has setup a 7 Member expert committee for exploring the other possible alternatives to pellet guns as non-lethal weapons
    • It will submit its report within two months. 
    • The Committee will be headed by : T V S N Prasad (Joint Secretary in the MHA)

Awards & Honors
  • Two Indians, Carnatic musician TM Krishna and human rights activist Bezwada Wilson conferred Ramon Magsaysay Award for 2016.
    • Wilson is one of the founders of the Safai Karmachari Andolan, and has been campaigning for the eradication of manual scavenging. 
    • TM Krishna has been striving to ensure social inclusiveness by taking Carnatic music to the Dalits.
    • Check Complete List of Raman Magsaysay Awardees for 2016 from here
  • Veteran athlete Milkha Singh will be given the Bharat Gaurav award by Kolkata-based football club, East Bengal. 
    • Singh will travel to Kolkata for the East Bengal Fo​undation Day on August 1, where he will be presented with the award and a cash prize of ₹2 lakh. 
    • Note : West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will be the chief guest at the event.
  • Masjid al-Haram in Saudi Arabia has been valued at $100 billion and ranked the world's most expensive building by Fly Abu Dhabi. 
    • Saudi Arabia's Abraj Al Bait, valued at $15 billion, and Singapore's Resorts World Sentosa, valued at $6.59 billion, have been placed second and third respectively. 
    • Singapore's Marina Bay Sands and United States' The Cosmopolitan complete the top five.
  • Actress Priyanka Chopra will co-host the United Nations' 'Global Citizen Festival' in New York on September 24
    • The 34-year-old actress will be hosting the event along with comedian and television host Seth Meyers and actors Neil Patrick Harris and Salma Hayek Pinault. 
  • Muttiah Muralitharan is set to become the first Sri Lankan to be inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame
    • Murali, the leading wicket-taker in both Tests and ODIs, is one of only two players with over 1,000 wickets in international cricket. 
    • Note : England's George Lohmann and Australia's Arthur Morris will be inducted posthumously alongside former Australia Women's captain Karen Rolton.
  • India names Parveen Rana as replacement for dope-tainted wrestler Narsingh Yadav for Rio Olympics 2016
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