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December 15, 2016

15th December 2016 Important Daily Current Affairs

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Dear Great Ambitionists, here are today's (15th December 2016) Important Current Affairs updates. Happy Reading :)

Daily Current Affairs of 15th December 2016

International Current Affairs
  • Today (15th December) is International Tea Day.
    • This day aims to draw global attention of governments and citizens to the impact of the global tea trade on workers, small growers and consumers.
    • Note : The first International Tea Day was celebrated in New Delhi on 15 December 2005.
  • Qatar has announced to end its 'kafala' labour sponsorship system which ties foreign workers to a single employer. 
    • With over 21 lakh foreign workers, it adopted a new contract-based law to give workers job flexibility and protection. 
    • The country has been facing criticism over its labour laws ever since it won the bid to host the 2022 football World Cup.
  • India has topped Asia in innovation and has emerged as the third biggest country worldwide in terms of New Innovation Centres, according to research by consulting firm Capgemini.
    • Bengaluru, where 3 new innovation centres opened between March and October, was ranked fifth among top innovation hubs globally.
  • The Indian Government today announced that it has extended the e-Tourist Visa facility to citizens of 161 countries
    • The number of foreign tourist arrivals on e-Tourist Visa from January to November this year has grown 168.5% over the same period last year.
  • French Parliament today voted to extend the country's state of emergency until July 2017 until after the presidential elections. 
    • This is the fifth extension since the emergency was imposed after the Paris attacks in November last year.
  • Hindus have the lowest level of educational attainment among all the major religions of the world, a Pew Research Center study has claimed. 
    • Hindus and Muslims have the least formal schooling (5.6 years), while 41% Hindus and 36% Muslims have no formal schooling at all, it found. 
    • Important Note : Jews are the most educated religious group in the world, the study claimed.
  • The 7th edition of India, Maldives bilateral exercise EKUVERIN 2016 began at Kadhdhoo, Laamu Atoll, Maldives. 
    • Aim of this exercise : to conduct military training between armies of both countries with emphasis on amphibious & counter insurgency, counter terrorism operations.
MOUs & Agreements
  • The Union Cabinet today approved memorandum of understanding (MoU) between India and Kyrgyzstan on cooperation in field of agriculture and food related industry. 
    • The proposed agreement covers various activities in the field of agriculture and allied sector.
  • The Union Cabinet has also approved the protocol amending agreement between India and Tajikistan for avoidance of double taxation and prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income. 
    • The protocol will enable sharing of information exchanged under Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) with other law enforcement agencies for non-tax purposes after it enters into force.
National Current Affairs
  • The Supreme Court today ordered the closure of all liquor shops near national and state highways across the country from April 1. 
    • While no new liquor vending license would be issued, the existing shops can continue to operate till the expiry of their licenses. 
    • The court further said the liquor shops should be at least 500 metres from the highways.
  • The Supreme Court also ordered that Indian Air Force personnel could not keep a beard
    • The court said the regulations did not interfere with an individual's religious freedom as they are meant to ensure discipline and uniformity.
Awards & Honors
  • Google's parent company Alphabet's CEO Larry Page has been named the world's most powerful CEO by Forbes, with his company having a market capitalisation of over $550 billion. 
    • Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and Amazon's Jeff Bezos have been ranked second and third respectively. Tesla's Elon Musk and Walmart's Doug McMillon have also featured on the list.
  • Jayaben Desai,  a Gujarat-born activist who led a campaign against low pay to women workers at a UK factory in the 1970s has been included in BBC's most influential women of the past 70 years list
    • Known as the sari-clad leader, she was one of the seven women on the list topped by Margaret Thatcher (Britain's first female Prime Minister).
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin has been named as the World's Most Powerful Person by Forbes, for the fourth consecutive year. 
    • India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi featured 9th in this list.
    • Top 10 in the list :  
      • Vladimir Putin (Russian President)
      • Donald Trump (US Presiden)
      • Angela Merkel (Germany Chancellor) 
      • Xi Jinping (Chinese President)
      • Pope Francis
      • Janet Yellen (US Federal Reserve Chairperson
      • Bill Gates (Bill & Melinda Foundation Chairman)
      • Larry Page (Google Founder)
      • Narendra Modi (Indian Prime Minister)
      • Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook CEO)
    • Important Note : Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani has been ranked 38, while India-born Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has been ranked 51.
  • Music composer AR Rahman's soundtrack for footballer Pele's biopic 'Pele: Birth of a Legend' has been selected in the first shortlist for 'Best Original Score' by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for the Oscars 2017
    • Rahman's song 'Ginga' is also in the running for Best Original Song. 
    • Note : Earlier, Rahman won two Oscars in these categories in 2009 for the movie "Slum Dog Millionaire".
Science & Technology
  • Pakistan Army has successfully test fired an enhanced version of an indigenously-designed Babur cruise missile
    • The missile incorporates advanced aerodynamics and avionics that can strike targets both at land and sea with high accuracy.
  • E-commerce major Amazon today successfully made its first-ever fully autonomous drone delivery without any human pilot. 
    • It took the drone only 13 minutes to make the delivery. 
  • Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International airport today became India's first airport to introduce self bag-drop facility
    • This will allow passengers that have already checked in online to quickly tag and drop their baggage before heading directly to the gate. 
Business & Economic Affairs
  • NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant today announced to give daily, weekly, and mega awards worth ₹340 crore for consumers and merchants making payments digitally. 
    • The awards under the 'Lucky Grahak Yojana' and 'Digi Dhan Vyapari Yojana' that are aimed at boosting digital payments will run from December 25, 2016, to April 14, 2017.
  • The exemptions for the use of old ₹500 notes will end today, making the currency note invalid for the payment of utility bills, gas cylinders or hospital charges after midnight.
    • The old ₹500 and ₹1,000 notes can now only be deposited in the banks till December 30 and at specific Reserve Bank of India offices till March 31, 2017.
  • The US Federal Reserve raised interest rates by 25 basis points to 0.5%-0.75% today, making it the second hike in a decade
    • The Fed also hinted at three more rate hikes over the next year, reportedly indicating a stable economic situation. 
    • This comes amid US President-elect Donald Trump's promises to boost growth through tax cuts, spending and deregulation.
  • India today announced it will contribute ₹3.3 crore to the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for the year 2016-17 "despite (its) own resource constraints".
    •  India's cumulative contribution since the fund was launched in 2006 now stands at ₹40 crore. 
    • Note : 29 countries promised ₹1,851 crore to the CERF after outgoing Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon made a plea for funds.
  • Australia is considering a proposal to demonetise its $100 currency note in an attempt to target tax evaders. 
    • The Australian government is also setting up a task force to curb black money and will appoint representatives during its mid-year budget meeting. 
    • Important Note : After India, Venezuela had scrapped its 100-bolivar note, giving its holders ten days to swap their old currency.
This is the end of today's Daily Current Affairs session friends. Good Day :)

Download November 2016 Month's Current Affairs PDF File from here

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