Current Affairs Today – July 11 2017

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Current Affairs July 11 2017

INDIAN AFFAIRS

President Pranab Mukherjee inaugurates ‘Ashiana Annexe’ in Dehradun, Uttarakhand
On July 10, 2017, President Pranab Mukherjee inaugurated the ‘Ashiana Annexe’ in Dehradun, Uttarakhand. At the inauguration function, MoU between M/s. Prashak Techno Enterprises and Central Building Research Institute was signed to collaborate for effective proliferation of Habitech-NivaraTantra Technology solutions.
i. The ‘Ashiana Annexe’ comprises twelve low cost dwelling units constructed to accommodate officers and staff of Rashtrapati Bhavan during Presidential visits to the Retreat at Ashiana.
ii. ‘Rashtrapati Ashiana’ situated on Rajpur Road of Dehradun comprises of the main building, Annexe, Upper Stables & Lines and Lower Stables & Lines with associated roads and pathways.

ESIC & DGFASLI sign MoU for collaboration on occupational health and prevention of occupational injuries and diseases
In the presence of Shri Bandaru Dattatreya, the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Labour & Employment, A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between ESIC and Directorate General Factory Advice Service & Labour Institutes (DGFASLI) for collaboration in the field of occupational health and prevention of occupational injuries and diseases signed in New Delhi on 11th July .
i. It will remain in force for a time period of three years.
ii. The MoU will help in spreading awareness for healthy working conditions, reduce the danger of diseases or injuries and provide good quality life for workers.
iii. The main focus of MoU is occupational health by establishing ‘DGFASLI-ESIC Occupational Health Training, Research & Development Centre’ (OHTRDC) at Regional Labour Institute, Faridabad .
Employees’ State Insurance :
Employees’ State Insurance (abbreviated as ESI) is a self-financing social security and health insurance scheme for Indian workers. This fund is managed by the Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) according to rules and regulations stipulated there in the ESI Act 1948
♦ Founded: 25 ; February 1952
♦ Headquarters: New Delhi

Maharashtra launches free injectable contraceptive for women
The Maharashtra Government has launched the ‘Antara’ program on account of World Population Day, which involves giving women the Modroxy Progesterone Acetate (MPA) injection to prevent unwanted pregnancy. The government is providing it free of cost.
Key Points:
i. The state has become the first to launch this injectable contraceptive.
ii. According to the state health minister Dr. Deepak Sawant, this injection can be considered as a safer alternative to hormonal pills because of its minimal side effects.
iii. The program will be launched in 23 district hospitals, 20 medical colleges and 12 women’s hospitals.Maharashtra launches free injectable contraceptive for women
iv. It will procure 33,000 doses of injections to cover different regions of Maharashtra.
v. The injections will prevent pregnancy for three months, and allow conception seven months after the injection is stopped.
vi. The injection needs to be given intramuscularly to women in the age bracket of 18-45 years.
vii. Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, have already implemented this new method of contraception.
viii. If spacing program is properly implemented, 30% of maternal deaths and 10% child deaths can be prevented in the state.
Thermal Power Plant in Maharashtra
♦ Paras Thermal Power Plant and Koradi Thermal Power Plant

Odisha to set up international standard sports city
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has announced to set up an international standard sports city announced on 11th of July 2017.
Key Notes:
i. Kalinga International Sport City will be set up in Bhubaneswar and will be eligible to bid for most international competitions including Commonwealth and Asian games.
ii. The chief minister stated that the state will also have satellite stadia with world class infrastructure in Cuttack, Sambalpur, Berhampur and Rourkela.
iii. The state government has also signed an expression of interest with the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) and the Athletics Federation of India for setting up of a high performance academy inside the Kalinga Stadium.
Odisha GK facts :
♦ Simlipal NP, Bhitar Kanika NP, Airport, Biju Patnaik airport

CM Arvind Kejriwal launches e-RTI, Delhi becomes 2nd state to accept online applications
CM Arvind Kejriwal has launched e-RTI in Delhi and has become second state to accept online application. It has been launched on 10th of July 2017.
Key Points:
iRight to Information (RTI) applicants would be able to register their queries online on the Delhi government’s new portal from 10th of July onwards.
ii. The Aam Aadmi Party government had started training public information officers (PIOs) across departments in early 2016.
iii. As per the Delhi government, the e-RTI portal would start accepting applications for a Arvind Kejriwal placed in Fortune 50 leaderstotal of 172 public authorities or government departments in the Delhi region.
iv. The Central government had urged the States to set up their own online application portals.Maharashtra had followed suit in 2015 with its own RTI portal.
v. According to the Delhi government’s RTI statistics which cover the police, municipal corporations and other government departments in the Capital.
vi. A total of 2.74 lakh RTI queries had been filed till Sunday evening out of these, 2.70 lakh applications have been disposed of.
vii. The Delhi government’s portal would allow users to file their requests, pay the fee via netbanking.
viii. The procedure is to file the first appeal, pay for additional documents online and get email/SMS alerts on the status of the applications.
ix. Users would be able to upload supporting documents.The portal would be in both English and Hindi.

Committee formed to study legalities for separate State flag in Karnataka
Karnataka State government has constituted a nine-member committee headed by Principal Secretary, Department of Kannada and Culture, to study legalities for separate State flag in Karnataka.
Key Points: The Principal Secretary, Department of Kannada and Culture will submit a report to the government on the possibility of “designing a separate flag for Karnataka and providing it a statutory standing.”
Are states permitted to have their own flags?
i. In S.R. Bommai v/s Union of India (Supreme Court 1994) case, the Supreme Court has declared that federalism is a basic feature of the Constitution and States are supreme in their sphere.
ii. There is no prohibition in the Constitution for the State to have its own flag.
iii. However, the manner in which the State flag is hoisted should not dishonour the national flag.
iv. It has to be always below the national flag.
v. The national flag code specifically authorises use of other flags subject to the regulation by the court so, State flag is not unauthorised.
Karnataka Heritage Sites
♦ Group of Monuments at Hampi Ballari district Karnataka India
♦ Group of Monuments at Pattadaka Bagalkot District, Karnataka, India

National Conference of NITI Aayog held in New Delhi
The National Conference of Chief Secretaries of States and Union Territories organised by NITI Aayog is held in New Delhi on July 10, 2017
Key Points:
i .It has been organized to further the spirit of cooperative and competitive federalism.
ii. It helps in measuring performance and progress of states and rank them appropriately to instill healthy competition among them.National Conference of NITI Aayog held in New Delhi
iii. It will cover a wide range of issues and will focus is on best practices in social and economic sectors across states.
iv. The Various developmental indicators developed by NITI Aayog, in areas like health, education, water management and digital transformation are being discussed.
v. Several interactive sessions also on issues including agriculture and health are also on the agenda.
About Delhi
♦ Delhi famous Temple:Akshardham, Gauri Shankar Temple
♦ Power Plant: Indraprastha Power Plant
♦ Heritage Sites:Red Fort, Qutub Minar, National rail Museum and Humayun Tomb

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

India to become largest milk producer in 2026 – OECD & FAO Report
According to OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2017-2026, released by Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, India will be the world’s largest milk producer by 2026 and will account for the biggest increase in wheat production globally.
i. As per OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2017-2026, world’s population will increase from 7.3 to 8.2 billion over the course of the next decade with India and Sub-Saharan Africa accounting for 56% of total population growth.
ii. From 2017-2026, milk production in India will grow 49%; in 2026, India will be the world’s largest milk producer.
iii. Global production of wheat is projected to increase by 11% from 2017-2026, while the wheat area will increases by only 1.8%.
iv. Rice production is expected to grow by 66 Mt from 2017-2026 and will be almost exclusively driven by yield growth, which will accounts for 93% of additional production.

IS confirms leader al-Baghdadi is dead
IS confirms leader al-Baghdadi is deadAccording to the Islamic State militant group its supreme leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has died.
Key Points:
i. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had led the terrorist group and declared himself the ruler of the ‘Islamic caliphate’.
ii. He has now been confirmed as dead by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights as well as a source from within the terror group.

Britain’s first pregnant man gives birth to girl
A 21-year-old man has become the first in Britain to give birth to a girl on 9th of July 2017.
Key Points:
i. The girl was born on 16th June at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.
ii. He had been living legally as a man for three years and was already part-way through hormone treatment to transform from a woman to a man.
iii. Gender transition treatment costs the NHS on average 29,000 pounds per patient.
iv. Thomas Beatie became the first man to give birth in the US in 2008.

BANKING & FINANCE

36th Foundation Day of NABARD celebrated on July 11 2017
Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley was the Chief Guest on the occasion of 36th Foundation Day of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), celebrated at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi on July 11, 2017.
i. NABARD dedicated this day to celebrate the Silver Jubilee (25 years) of Self Help Group Bank Linkage Programme (SHG BLP).
ii. Self Help Group Bank Linkage Programme (SHG BLP) is a pioneering initiative of Financial Inclusion by NABARD.The pilot stage of this programme was started in year 1992

Axis Bank, IIC pact to boost trade with Latin America
Axis Bank has announced a collaboration with Inter- American Investment Corporation that it will help traders boost relations between India and Latin America.
Key Points:
iAxis Bank said it is the first Indian Bank to be a part of such a facility.
ii. It will facilitate trade with Latin America and the Caribbean in which Axis Bank will participate in the Trade Finance Facilitation Programme (TFFP) as a confirming bank.
iii. The collaboration aims to foster bilateral trade relations by allowing ease of transactions.
iv. The Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) will be acting on behalf of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
v. Through collaboration the Axis Bank will aim to strengthen international trade relations in the region.axis bank
vi. The partnership will accelerate trade relations between India and the South American continent.
Axis Bank:
♦ CEO: Shikha Sharma
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai
♦  Founded: 1990, Ahmedabad

BUSINESS

Five states, Puducherry to ink MoU with GeM
Five states and a union territory including Gujarat and Telangana would ink an MoU with Government e-Market (GeM) for smart procurement of goods and services.
Key Points:
i. As per the government the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will ensure timely payment by state departments to the vendors registered on the GeM portal.
ii. The other states that will ink the agreement are Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and union territory Puducherry.
iii. GeM was launched by the commerce ministry to bring greater transparency and efficiency in public procurement.
iv. It has been made mandatory on GeM to make payment to the vendors within 10 days of receipt of goods and services.
v. States has been already using the GeM portal for procurement purposes.
vi. Government e-market place SPV and DGS&D associated with National eGovernance Division.
vii. It is organizing a national consultative workshop for the government buyers and sellers on GeM.
viii. The government is holding two days workshop to involve more people on GeM including MSMEs.

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

IROAF sets gold standards by winning Golden Peacock Award for Eco Innovation for year 2017
Indian Railways Organization for Alternate Fuel (IROAF) has set gold standards by winning Golden Peacock Award for Eco Innovation for the year 2017 for introducing eco friendly and cost saving Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) based Dual Fuel 1400 HP Diesel engines on Diesel Electric Multiple Unit (DEMU) trains.
i. The CNG based dual fuel 1400 HP engine used in DEMU trains developed by IROAF has successfully substituted diesel fuel with CNG up to 20%.
ii. This innovation will reduce emissions considerably by bringing down nitrogen oxides (NOx) by 16%, CO2by 6% and Particulate Matter by 18% besides achieving economy in fuel cost by 8%.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Debi Prasad Dash takes over as DRI chief
Debi Prasad Dash has taken over as the Director General of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI).
Key Points:
i. Dash was an officer of the 1985 batch of Indian Revenue Service (IRS) (Customs).
ii. He was the acting head of the DRI for the past five months.
iii. He is a recipient of the President’s award for specially distinguished record of service and Merit award from the World Customs Organisation (WCO).
Debi Prasad Dash takes over as DRI chiefiv. He has earlier worked in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), New York, Commonwealth Secretariat, London and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
v. He was appointed by the UN Secretary General as the head of the International Panel of Experts of the UN Security Council.
vi. He was a member of the INTERPOL Working Group on Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism

Leslie Thng to take over as new CEO of Vistara
Vistara has announced appointment of Leslie Thng as its Chief Executive Officer from October this year.
Key Points:
i. Leslie Thng succeed Phee Teik Yeoh as Chief Executive Officer for Vistara, effective ..
ii. As Vistara pads up for the launch of international operations next year, the airline today announced after Phee Teik Yeoh returns to Singapore International Airlines.
About Vistara
Tata SIA Airlines Limited, operating as Vistara, is an Indian domestic airline based in Gurgaon with its hub at Delhi-Indira Gandhi International Airport.
♦ HQ: Gurugram
♦ Parent organization: Tata Sons
♦ Hub: Indira Gandhi International Airport

M&M’s Rajeev Dubey elected to the governing board of ILO
Group president of HR & Corporate Services at Mahindra & Mahindra, Rajeev Dubey has been elected to the governing board of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) in Geneva. Rajeev has been elected against the seat for South Asia.
i. Dubey, has also been the past- president of The Employer’s Federation of India .
ii. The ILO Governing Body is an apex level policy making and oversight body with 56 members comprising 14 members from the Employers, 14 from the Trade Unions and 28 from the Government.M&M's Rajeev Dubey elected to the governing board of ILO
iii. The ILO, which is the only tripartite body of the United Nations Organisation, was set up with a mandate of working towards global social justice.
ILO :
♦ Headquarters‎: ‎Geneva, Switzerland
♦ Formation‎: ‎1919
♦ Head‎: ‎Guy Ryder

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Vaccine shows protection against gonorrhea for first time
The findings mark the first time a vaccine has shown any protection against gonorrhea .Researchers say a vaccine, originally developed to protect against a strain of meningitis, has been shown to ward off gonorrhea – a sexually transmitted infection.
i. The researchers at the University of Auckland used data from 11 sexual health clinics for all people aged 15 to 30 who had been diagnosed with gonorrhea or chlamydia, or both, and who had also been eligible to be immunised against meningitis in the 2004-2006 campaign.
ii. According to their study, people who had received the meningococcal B vaccine were 31 percent less likely to be infected with gonorrhea than those who hadn’t received the MeNZB vaccine.
iii. The findings “provide experimental evidence and a proof of principle” that meningitis vaccines might offer moderate cross-protection against gonorrhea.
iv. Complications of gonorrhoea disproportionally affect women, including pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancy and infertility, as well as an increased risk of HIV.
v. Despite the diseases being very different in symptoms and transmission modes,  the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Neisseria meningitidis have an up to 90 percent genetic match, providing a biologically plausible mechanism.

ENVIRONMENT

NGT bans use of nylon and synthetic manja
National Green Tribunal (NGT) imposed a ban on nylon and synthetic ‘manja’ the string used to fly kites as it poses a threat to the lives of birds, animals and humans.
Key Points:
i. The ban also includes cotton ‘manja’ coated with glass, the tribunal clarified.
ii. The green panel clarified that the ban order would apply on nylon, Chinese and cotton manja coated with glass.
iii. State governments have been directed to prohibit the “manufacture, sale, storage, purchase and use” of synthetic ‘manja’ or nylon threads and all other synthetic NGT bans use of nylon and synthetic manjathreads used for flying kites.
iv. A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said there will be a total ban on the ‘manja’, which are made of nylon or any other synthetic material or are coated with non-biodegradable substances.
v. Manja posed a severe threat to humans and animals as every year a number of deaths are caused by it.
vi. PETA had clarified that minor children were engaged by the cottage industry for the manufacture of ‘manja’ which caused respiratory problems and is extremely harmful to their health.

OBITUARY

‘The Indian Fighter’ Actress Elsa Martinelli Dead At 82
Elsa Martinelli, the veteran Italian actress, best known for her work in the 1955 film “The Indian Fighter” passed away in Rome. She was 82.
i. Elsa made her acting debut in 1954 with “Le Rouge et le Noir” directed by France’s Claude Autant-Lara.
ii. Her breakout role came the following year in Andre de Toth’s “The Indian Fighter“, where she played
iii. Martinelli’s last role in an English-language film was as Carla the Agent in Eugene Levy-directed ensemble comedy “Once Upon a Crime,” in 1992.
iv. She appeared in more than 40 feature films.

Renowned cartoonist Mangesh Tendulkar passes away
Renowned cartoonist Mangesh Tendulkar passed away on 10th of July in Pune. He was 83.Renowned cartoonist Mangesh Tendulkar passes away
Key Points:
i. Tendulkar was suffering from bladder cancer for the last three years.
ii. He was one of the most eminent cartoonists in India.
iii. He was conferred with the president’s medal in 1980, Marathi Natya Parishad Award in 1993 and Pulotsav award in 2003 among several other honours.
iv. His cartoons were displayed at traffic signals and targeted, among others, two-wheeler riders.
v. He is the brother of acclaimed playwright and screenwriter Padma Bhushan Vijay Tendulkar.
vi. He quote one of his statement in his website is “Cartoon is a language which breaks through the barriers of any kind of language in the world and entertains the people in every way

IMPORTANT DAYS

World Population Day – July 11 2017
World Population day is observed every year on July 11th 2017 to raise awareness of global population issues since 1989.
i. Theme of World Population Day 2017 is ‘Family Planning: Empowering People, Developing Nations‘
ii. Aim: To raise awareness on various population issues such as the importance of family planning, gender equality, poverty, maternal health and human rights.
iii. It was first started in the year 1989 by the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
iv. This year celebration, coincides with the Family Planning Summit, the second meeting of the FP2020–Family Planning 2020–initiative, which aims to expand access to voluntary family planning to 120 million additional women by 2020.
Shri J P Nadda launches new family planning ‘Mission Parivar Vikas’ initiatives on World Population Day
J P Nadda launches new family planning initiatives Mission Parivar Vikas will focus on 146 high fertility districts in 7 states with high TFR on World Population Day celebration.
♦ Mission Parivar Vikas is a new initiative conceived by the Ministry with a strategic focus on improving access through provision of services, promotional schemes, commodity security, capacity building, enabling environment and intensive monitoring.
♦ He alson introduced the new injectable in the public health system under the Antara” program and launched a new software Family Planning Logistics Management Information System (FP-LMIS) designed to provide robust information on the demand and distribution of contraceptives to health facilities and ASHAs to strengthen supply chain management.

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