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September 19, 2016

19th September 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • India is going to declare Pakistan a terror sponsor state after the recent attack on the Army base in Uri, Jammu and Kashmir. 
    • Further, India may soon launch a punitive strike and bombing of Pakistani posts in response to ceasefire violations and infiltration. 
    • It has also planned to scale down diplomatic ties and economic ties with Pakistan.
  • The UN Security Council has called an emergency meeting to discuss air raids by the US-led coalition which killed 62 Syrian soldiers
    • This comes after a nationwide ceasefire which was brokered by US and Russia, went into effect last week. 
    • Note : Syria has asked the United Nations to condemn US aggression and respect its sovereignty.
  • France has passed a new law banning all plastic utensils, allowing only those made from biologically-sourced materials. 
    • The law will be fully implemented by 2020 and is part of France's 'Energy Transition for Green Growth Act' aimed at tackling climate change.
  • China and Russia have carried out joint naval exercises dubbed as Joint Sea-2016 in the resource-rich South China Sea (SCS) off China’s southern Guangdong province.

National Affairs
  • Haryana Transport Minister Krishan Lal Panwar has announced free bus rides for the girl school students in the state.
  • Indian Railways has launched Swachhta Saptah (Cleanliness Week) to mark the ‘Swachh Paryavaran Diwas’ (Clean Environment Day)
    • Note : The special 9-day (from 17 to 25 September 2016) long public cleanliness outreach programme was launched by Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu in New Delhi. 
  • India has officially declared itself free from highly contagious Avian Influenza (H5N1) or bird flu and has notified the same to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE)
    • This announcement was made as no outbreak of Avian Influenza (H5N1) was reported in the country after the last notified outbreak at Humnabad, Bidar district, Karnataka in June 2016.
  • Irrespective of the medium of instruction used by teachers, Engineering students in Madhya Pradesh will now be able to write their exams in Hindi
    • Students will have to choose between Hindi and English at the course's beginning. 

Awards & Honors
  • American television series 'Game of Thrones' has broken the record for the highest number of Emmy Awards won by any fictional series, with a total of 38 Emmys
  • Kerala's St Joseph's College is the only higher education institute given A++ grade by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) under its new grading system.
    • NAAC assessed 330 institutes across the country to decide their Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) score based on seven parameters including academic curriculum, research, and infrastructure.
  • Mumbai based writer Meghna Pant has won the Fellows of Nature (FON) South Asia Short Story Award in Nature writing, for her short story titled "People of the Sun".

People in News
  • Former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan has returned to the University of Chicago to resume his role as a ‘Distinguished Service Professor of Finance’. 
    • Rajan, an IIT and IIM alumnus, has been associated with the University of Chicago since 1991 and was 'on leave' from university duties, during his tenure as RBI governor.
Science & Technology
  • Union Minister for Human Resource Development Prakash Javadekar today inaugurated the Super Computer “PARAM-ISHAN”, at the Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati today.
Business & Economy
  • ICICI Prudential Life Insurance's Initial Public Offering (IPO), the first ever by an Indian insurer, opened for subscription today and is the biggest local IPO in last six years
    • The company aims to raise about ₹6,000 crore through the issue, which will close on September 21. 
    • Note : Currently, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance is the largest private sector life insurer in India.
  • India has approved a $1.04 billion project for constructing and upgrading 558 km of roads to link it with Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Nepal
    • This is to ease passengers and cargo movement, amid attempts to increase inter-regional trade by 60%. 
    • The project will receive 50% funding from Asian Development Bank and is expected to be completed within the next two years.

MOUs & Agreements
  • The Gionee India has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Haryana government to set up its phone manufacturing hub in Faridabad
    • The MoU was signed by Gionee Mobiles Chairman Liu Lirong and Haryana State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (HSIIDC) in presence of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. 

Science & Technology
  • Indian Navy’s indigenously built most Advanced Guided Missile Stealth Destroyer ‘Mormugao’ was launched in Mumbai, Maharashtra. 
    • The bedecked ship was launched by Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba’s wife Reena at a function at Mazagaon Docks.

New Appointments
  • Indian Test captain Virat Kohli has been appointed the brand ambassador of Punjab National Bank (PNB). 
    • Note : Virat is the third Indian cricketer whose endorsements have exceeded ₹100 crore, with Reebok, NestlĂ©, Adidas and MRF being among the brands he promotes.

    General Knowledge
    • With the signing of the Electoral Bill 123 years ago on this day (19th September) in the year 1893, New Zealand became the first country in the world to grant national voting rights to women
      • The bill was the outcome of years of suffragette meetings across the country. 
      • Note : India granted women the right to vote as soon as it became a Republic in 1950.
    • Indian-origin astronaut Sunita Williams, who turns 51 today, became the first person to run a marathon in space when she participated in the Boston Marathon while in orbit in 2007. 
      • The astronaut took over four hours to complete the marathon on a treadmill at the International Space Station and circled the Earth at least twice in the process.

    • China finished on top of the medals' table at the Rio Paralympics with 239 medals, while India ended their campaign at 43rd spot with four medals. 
      • Note : This was India’s best-ever performance at the Paralympics, with two golds, one silver and one bronze. 
      • China’s tally included 107 golds, followed by Great Britain at second spot with 147 medals, comprising 64 golds.
    • Sports Minister Vijay Goel today announced that India’s Rio Paralympics medal-winning athletes will also get the Khel Ratna
      • The Khel Ratna was awarded to India’s Olympic medalists as per the policy, but Goel had earlier claimed there was no such model for Paralympians. 
      • Note : India won four medals at the Rio Paralympics, including two golds by Devendra Jhajharia and Mariyappan Thangavelu.
    • Young Indian shooter Subhankar Pramanick has won the gold medal at the ISSF Junior World Cup for pistol, rifle and shotgun in Gabala, Azerbaijan.
    • Summer Olympics 2016 host city Rio de Janeiro hosted Brazil's first ever Dog Olympic Games.
    • Indian shooters have won seven medals, including three golds and one silver, to lead the medal tally at the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) Junior World Cup in Azerbaijan. 
      • Subhankar Pramanik won India's first gold in the 50-metre rifle prone event, while Sambhaji Patil won the individual and team gold medals in the men’s 25-metre standard pistol team event.
    • Mercedes F1 team's German driver Nico Rosberg won the Singapore Grand Prix today
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