Current Affairs Today – December 2 2015

Dear Readers, We cover some important news in Current Affairs Today Section, which are not covered in Daily Detailed News, More Current Affairs coverage will help you to Score Good Marks in Competitive Exam.

CAT Dec 2

INDIAN AFFAIRS

Maharashtra topped in GSDP – Brickwork Report

In accordance with the 4th edition of report by credit rating agency Brickwork, Maharashtra is the biggest economy within India at Rs 16.87 lakh crore in terms of gross state domestic product (GSDP). The rating agency looked at the State government’s willingness and ability to honour debt obligations.

  • Maharashtra’s GSDP has grown by 69% for the financial year ended March 31, 2015 and is followed by Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh

Union Government launched GIAN Scheme to boost higher education

GIAN

Global Initiative of Academic Networks(GIAN) scheme to boost the quality of the country’s higher education through international collaboration launched at the Indian Institute of Technology-Gandhinagar by HRD Minister SmritiIrani, and was started at IIT Kharagpur in the presence of R. Subrahmanyam(additional secretary for technical education), is inter-connected with the ‘Make in India’ campaign and the IMPRINT programme.

Key points:

  • 10-day courses:3D Digitisation for Cultural Heritage at IIT Gandhinagar and Orthopaedic Biomechanics: Implants and Biomaterials at IIT Kharagpur.
  • 201 courses approved under GIAN from among 495 courses so far.

Orthopaedic biomechanics courseby: Prof. NicoVerdonschot from the Netherlands

President given assent to Labour Laws (Gujarat Amendment) Bill, 2015

President PranabMukherjee given assent to the Labour Laws Bill of Gujarat, which has provisions to ban strikes in public utility services for up to one year. The Bill was sent for the President’s approval along with the Gujarat Control of Terrorism and OrganisedCrime (GCTOC) Bill, 2015 which is yet to be approved.

  • The bill also sought to change certain basic definitions in the Minimum Wages Act, 1948 and clauses in the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947

Objective: “To strengthen labourers and employers equally in the industrial hub of Gujarat.”

Reforms:

  • Payment of wages by cheque, in establishments that employed over 20 labourers to give a push to the PradhanMantri Jan Dhan Yojana that means labourers in Gujarat who get wages by cheques willget into their bank accounts under PMJDY.
  • Government fixed compounding amount for industrialist maximum of Rs.21,000 and for labourers it is between Rs.150 and Rs.3,000, amending the Industrial Dispute Act.

Labour and Employment minister:Vijay Rupani.

Jharkhand Government declared state as drought hit

Jharkhand government declared the state as drought-hit because of scanty rainfall this season and decision was taken in a cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Raghubar Das.

  • Package of Rs.1,398 crore to drought-hit farmers for subsidized diesel, distribution of seeds, construction of small check dams and other facilities declared by the state government.

Delhi Assembly passed three major education bills

Three education bills passed will regulate the refund of excess fees at private institutions and also toabolish the screening processes at nursery and crumbthe no detention policy till class 8th.

Key points:

  • Delhi School Education Amendment Bill (DSEAA) and the Delhi School (Verification of Accounts and Refund of Excess Fee) Bill lay down heavy fine(Rs.5 lakh for the first breach and Rs.10 lakh for each subsequent breach) and imprisonment for violators of various provisions.
  • Penalty of different grades for taking interviews at the entry levels plus the nursery admission and charging capitation fees.
  • Salary and allowances payable to, and terms and conditions of employees of recognized private schools shall be as per government schools.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

China hosts 1st BRICS media summit

BRICS

China took the initiative to create a media platform for the emerging economies by hosting the 1stmedia summit of countries Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS).

Objective:

To build a new institutional framework that would benefit the media of five emerging economies, which have deep linkages with the Global South.

Key points:

  • Participants:25 media organisations
  • China’s Xinhua news agency is the initiator of the project in collaboration with The Hindu group of publications, the Brazil Communication Company, Russia Today International News Agency, and South Africa’s Independent Media.
  • The formation of a cooperation office for BRICS Media Summit that will become an executive body responsible for the daily contact of the committee members and the organisation and coordination of the Summit.

German cabinet approved military mandate to fight Islamic State in Syria

German cabinet approved plans to pledgeup to 1,200 soldiers to back the international coalition fighting against Islamic State(IS) in Syria.

  • After the Paris attacks, the Germany chancellor Angela Merkel agreed to honor a request from France to provide support for its operations against ISIS in Syria. Germany plans to send scoutingaircraft, tanker planes and a warship to the region, but will notkeenlyinvolvein combat.
  • The mandate is for one year at a cost of €134m (£94m) and can be extended next year.A German frigate could protect the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle in the eastern Mediterranean, from which fighter jets are bombing shots, and tanker aircraft could refill them mid-air to encompass their range.

Key points:

  • Germanys’ foreign minister- Frank-Walter Steinmeier

BANKING & FINANCE

Employer’s attestation not required for PF claim

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) has announced that its subscribers can now directly file the applications for their PF withdrawals without their employer’s attestation which was earlier mandatory for this purpose.

  • Employees whose details like Aadhaar Number and Bank Account Number have been seeded in their Universal (or portable PF) Account Number (UAN) and whose UAN have been activated will be able to enjoy this benefit given by EPFO. Claims will have to be submitted manually by subscribers and this initiative will make the PF withdrawals easy for the employees.

RBI inks info exchange pact with UK financial body

The Reserve Bank of India has signed separate Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) on Supervisory Cooperation and Exchange of Supervisory Information with Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), United Kingdom.

  • Earlier in July 2012, RBI had signed an agreement for supervisory co-operation with the Financial Services Authority (FSA), United Kingdom.
  • Due to some reforms implemented in UK financial services regulation, the functions exercised by FSA were transferred to PRA and FCA and due to which RBI had to sign these separate MOUs for supervisory co-operation between the Reserve Bank and the PRA and FCA.

With this agreement, RBI has entered into MOUs for Supervisory Co-operation with supervisors of 33 countries to promote greater co-operation and share supervisory information.

BUSINESS

ICBC to become Tata Group’s banking partner

Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd (ICBC) has joined hands with Tata Group to become its strategic banking partner.

  • ICBC will provide the Tata group with financing products, global cash management, consulting, international trade finance business, investment banking, foreign exchange, derivatives trading, and other global financial services.
  • This alliance will be a global one with the geographies covered including India, China, Singapore, Europe, the USA, and South America.

Key points:

  • Tata Sons Chairman : Cyrus P. Mistry

Tesla at 3rd position in BCG’s innovation survey

According to a report released by Boston Consulting Group (BCG), Electric car star Tesla of United States has been listed third in the list of the 50 most innovative companies. Two years ago, Tesla had made its debut on the list at 41st place.

  • In this list, Apple and Google have hold the first and second spot respectively.
  • Tesla was followed in order by Microsoft, Samsung, Toyota, BMW, Gilead, Amazon, and Daimler.

Key points:

  • Tesla’s CEO : Elon Musk
  • Headquarters : Palo Alto, California, United States

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

Renowned violinist L Subramaniam to be honoured with ITC Sangeet Samman

Violinist L.Subramaniam

Renowned  Padma Bhushan & Sangeet Natak Akademi awardee, L Subramaniam  will be honoured with the Sangeet Samman at the ITC Sangeet Sammelan 2015 beginning on December 4 at the Victoria Memorial, Kolkatta.

  • He is the only musician who has performed and recorded South Indian and Western classical music, both orchestral and non-orchestral, composed for and conducted major orchestras.
  • The violinist will perform at the inaugural of 3-day Sammelan at the Victoria Memorial. The next two days of the Sammelan will be held at the ITC SRA lawn.

Delhi Development Authority awarded with E-India Award

The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has been awarded with the E-India Award for adopting technology to serve the public better, and using manpower and resources efficiently through mobile applications.

  • The authority received the award under the category of Digital India IT initiatives in the field of ‘land protection and engineering projects’.
  • One of the app for which the award was given is ‘Vacant land photo uploading system’ in which the officials of the land and engineering department can upload the photographs of vacant land to keep a check on encroachment.

The second award winning app was the‘measurement books’ which is for e-filing of measurement of engineering projects for exact estimation of parameters and project requirements.

Narendra Modi in eighth place for Time magazine’s Person of the Year Poll

PM Narendra Modi is listed at the eighth place in the TIME Person of the Year readers’ choice poll with a vote share of 2.7 per cent.

  • According to the Time profile, “Modi has encouraged foreign direct investment in India and is trying to modernize the world’s largest democracy. He has also faced controversy over what some see as right wing extremism”.
  • With a vote share of 10.5 per cent, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has topped the list with Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai, Pope Francis and US President Barack Obama at the second, third and fourth place respectively.

Key Points:

  • In 2013, The Pope was TIME’s Person of the Year.
  • In 2007, Russian President Vladimir Putin was TIME’s Person of the Year.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Roch Marc Christian Kabore elected as president of Burkina Faso

Roch Marc Christian Kabore has won Burkina Faso’s presidential election by securing 53.5% of the votes.

About Kabore:

  • Kabore has served as Prime Minister of Burkina Faso from 1994 to 1996 and President of the National Assembly of Burkina Faso from 2002 to 2012.
  • He also served as President of the Congress for Democracy and Progress (CDP).
  • In January 2014, he announced his resignation from the ruling CDP and founded a new opposition party, the People’s Movement for Progress.

OBITUARY

Koodiyattom artiste Margi Sathi passed away

Koodiyattom artiste Margi Sathi passed away

Noted Nangiarkoothu and Koodiyattam performer Margi Sathi passed away at the age of 50. She was undergoing treatment for cancer.

About Margi Sathi:

  • Margi Sathi belonged to Kerala.She had performed at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris in October 2001 as part of a programme to mark UNESCO’s proclamation of Kutiyattam as a “masterpiece of oral and intangible heritage of humanity”.
  • She was given various recognitions like Junior Fellowship of the Ministry of Culture, Government of India for research project in Nangiarkoothu, Kerala Sangeet Nataka Academy Award for Koodiyattam, etc.
  • She also acted in some movies and authored some books.

Sarangi maestro Ustad Sabri Khan passed away

Padma Bhushan award winner Sarangi maestro Ustad Sabri Khan passed away at the age of 88.

About Ustad Sabri Khan:

  • Ustad Sabri Khan belonged to Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh.
  • He was an eminent Sarangi player, who popularised the instrument across the globe.
  • He was honoured with several awards, including Padma Shri (1992) and Padma Bhushan (2006).

IMPORTANT DAYS

International Day for the Abolition of Slavery

The International Day for the Abolition of Slavery is organized every year on December 2 by the United Nations General Assembly.

  • This day marks the anniversary of the United Nations adopting the Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others, in 1949.

Theme : “Women and Slavery”