Current Affairs Today – July 17 2017

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Current Affairs July 17 2017

INDIAN AFFAIRS

Minister of Railways inaugurates Sindhudurg leg of the Science Express
The IX Phase of the prestigious Science Express exhibition train which is on a nationwide tour since February 17, 2017 reached Sindhudurg in Maharashtra on July 17, 2017.
i. This phase of train is being referred as ‘Science Express Climate Action Special (SECAS) – II’ as it conveys message about global challenge related to climate change.
ii. The current ninth phase of the Science Express as SECAS II was flagged off on Feb 17, 2017 from Delhi Safdarjung Railway Station by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, Dr. Harsh Vardhan – Minister of Science & Technology and Earth Sciences; and Late Anil Madhav Dave – Minister of State (I/C) for Environment, Forest and Climate Change.

J-K govt launches weekly festival ‘Cultrue of Cruise’at Dal Lake
The Jammu and Kashmir has launched a first ever ‘Cultrue of Cruise’, a weekly cultural programme at Dal lake on 16th of July 2017.
Key Points:
i. The J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages (JKAACL)in association with the tourism J-K govt launches weekly festival 'Cultrue of Cruise'at Dal Lakedepartment of Kashmir launched the event.
ii .It aimed to bring artists from various fields on one stage. 
iii. The innovative programme series brings writers, performance artistes, musicians, poets and academics together and offers a program of performances, workshops, talks, forums and debates.
iv. The inaugural programme of the series saw artistes such as Mohammed YaseenGundpuri, Mohammed Subhan Shah, and Bashir Kotur.
v. Kashmir Divisional Commissioner Baseer Ahmad Khan also announced that water transport for public in the Jhelum River will be free of cost for a period of one month.
vi. Timing of this free service is 10 AM to 4 PM. Later, these services will be extended to Pulwama, Anantnag and Baramulla.
vii. Sringar Deputy Commissioner Farooq Ahmad Lone directed the tourism department to deploy new motor boats for this service so that people do not face any difficulty.
National Park in Jammu and Kashmir:
♦ Dachigam NP, Salim Ali NP and Hemis NP

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

India & Sri Lanka sign MoU to develop village in Anuradhapura District
India and Sri Lanka have signed a MoU to develop a village in Anuradhapura District. The total estimated cost is Rs 30 crores Sri Lankan rupees.
Key Points:
i. The MoU was signed by High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka Mr. Taranjit Singh Sandhu and Mrs. W.K.K. Athukorala, Secretary to the Ministry of Housing and Construction in the presence of Parliament Speaker Mr. KaruJayasuriya.
ii. The project is in line with Government of Sri Lanka’s policy of rehabilitation of rural villages for economic development.
iii. It will benefit 153 families residing in the village.
iv. The village in the name of a famous Buddhist monk SobithaThero, a multipurpose India & Sri Lanka sign MoU to develop village in Anuradhapura Districtcommunity building, internal water supply system and renovation of monk’s quarters & library.
About Srilanka
♦ Capital: Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte
♦ Currency: Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR)
♦ PM:Ranil Wickremesinghe
♦ President: Maithripala Sirisena

BUSINESS

Singapore Airlines rated best airline in the world
Singapore Airlines has been rated as the world’s best airline in a survey by the Travel + Leisure (T+L) magazine.
The Top 5 International Airlines:

1Singapore Airlines
2Emirates
3Qatar Airways
4Cathay Pacific
5Japan Airlines

Tata Motors develops first Bio-Methane Bus
Auto major Tata Motors has developed the country’s first bio-CNG (bio-methane) bus on 17th of July 2017.
Key Points:
i. The buses were showcased at the Urja Utsav organised by oil ministry.
ii. Bio-CNG will help in contributing to the smart cities and to keep them clean and is a good option for wet garbage management.
iii. The bio-methane engines (5.7 SGI and 3.8 SGI) will be available on light and medium buses. Tata Motors develops first Bio-Methane Bus
iv. It displayed three models, including the lead model Tata LPO 1613 with 5.7 SGI NA BS-IV IOBD-II compliant buses.
v. The Tata LPO 1613, already in operation by Pune Municipal Transport Corporation, was showcased with bio-methane fuel at the event.
vi.The gas, which gets produced out of natural degradation process, escapes into the atmosphere unused.
vii. Bio-methane bus is aimed to develop environment-friendly vehicles. Bio-methane is produced out of bio-degradable materials like kitchen waste.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Justice Gopal Prasad Parajuli to be the new Chief Justice of Nepal
Justice Gopal Prasad Parajuli will be the new Chief Justice of Nepal announced on 17th July 2017.
Key Points:
i. A special programme is organised at the office of the President in Sheetal Niwas and President Bidya Devi Bhandari administered the oath of office and secrecy to CJ Parajuli.
ii. After endorsement by PHSC the President will now appoint him as the Chief Justice. No complaints were registered against him in the PHSC.
iii. He will head the judiciary till 28th April 2018. Justice Parajuli is the senior most judge of the Supreme Court after the retirement of Chief Justice SushilaKarki.
iv. Prime Minister Sher BahadurDeuba, Vice-President Nanda Bahadur Pun, Speaker OnsariGharti, chiefs of constitutional bodies, judges of the Supreme Court and Chief Secretary, RajendraKishorChhetri, among others, were present on the occasion.
v. He was born on 28th April 1953 in Tanahun district, Parajuliand had practiced law for long and was appointed the Ad-Hoc Justice at appellate court in 1990.
About Nepal
♦ Capital: Kathmandu.
♦ Currency: Nepalese rupee
♦ Prime minister of Nepal: SherBahadur Deuba

Farooq Abdullah, Kunhalikutty take oath as Lok Sabha members
National Conference patron and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah and Indian Union Muslim League’s PK Kunhalikutty took oath as the Member of Parliament (MP) in the Lok Sabha on 17 July 2017.
Key Notes:
i. Abdullah took the oath in Kashmiri, while Kunhalikutty opted for English.
iiAbdullah was elected to the lower house of Parliament after defeating his Peoples Democratic Party rival Nazir Ahmed Khan.Farooq Abdullah, Kunhalikutty take oath as Lok Sabha members
iii. He defeated by over 10000 votes from the Srinagar-Budgam parliamentary constituency.
ivKunhalikutty was elected after winning the Malappuram by-poll in Kerala.
v. He defeated Communist Party of India-Marxist candidate and youth leader MB Faisal.

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Super-flexible and strong artificial silk developed
Scientists from the University of Cambridge have developed super-stretchy and strong artificial silk. It is composed almost entirely of water, which may be used to make eco-friendly textiles and sensors.
Key Points:
i. The fibres are spun from a soupy material called a hydrogel, which is 98% water.
ii.The remaining 2% of the hydrogel is made of silica and cellulose.      
iii. According to the researcher’s fibres, that resembles miniature bungee cords as they can absorb large amounts of energy, are sustainable, non-toxic and can be made at room temperature.
iv. The extremely thin threads are a few millionths of a metre in diameter. After the hydrogel is stretched for roughly 30 seconds, the water evaporates, leaving a strong fibre.
v. Fibrecan support stresses in the range of 100 to 150 megapascals, which is similar to other synthetic and natural silks.
vi. The fibres are capable of self-assembly at room temperature, and are held together by supramolecular host, where atoms share electrons.

ENVIRONMENT

GSI discovers millions of tonnes of precious metals and minerals in Indian waters
Scientists from the Geological Survey of India (GSI) have discovered the presence of millions of tonnes of precious metals and minerals deep under the waters that surround peninsular India.
i. The huge presence of marine resources was first identified off Mangaluru, Chennai, Mannar Basin, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and around Lakshadweep in early 2014.
ii. Marine resources that have been identified comprise lime mud, phosphate-rich and calcareous sediments, hydrocarbons, metalliferous deposits and micronodules.

SPORTS

Wimbledon Championships 2017 – Overview
131st edition of the Wimbledon Championships tennis tournament took place at  All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon, London, United Kingdom from 3rd – 16th July 2017.
♦ At 35 years and 11 months, Roger Federer has become oldest Wimbledon male champion in the Open era (since 1968).
Wimbledon 2017 – Winners:

CategoryWinnerRunners-up
Men’s SinglesRoger Federer (Switzerland)Marin Cilic (Croatia)
Women’s SinglesGarbine Muguruza (Spain)Venus Williams (US)
Men’s DoublesLukasz Kubot (Poland) & Marcelo Melo (Brazil)Oliver MArach (Austria) & Mate Pavic (Croatia)
Women’s DoublesEkaterina Makarova (Russia) & Elena Vesnina (Russia)Monica Niculescu (Romania) & Chan Hao-ching (Taiwan)
Mixed DoublesJamie Murray (UK) & Martina Hingis (Switzerland)Heather Watson (UK) & Henri Kontinen (Finland)

Lewis Hamilton wins record-equalling fifth British GP
Lewis Hamilton Mercedes driver won his fourth successive British Grand Prixfor a record-equaling fifth time at the Silverstone on 16th of July 2017.
Key Points:
i. With the win, Hamilton equals Jim Clark and Alain Prost record with five British GP career wins.
ii. Mercedes team mate Valtteri Bottas finished in second place.
iii. Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen finished at the third spot followed by Red Bull’s Max Lewis Hamilton wins Formula 1 Chinese Grand Prix for MercedesVerstappen and Daniel Ricciardo.
iv. Hamilton’s victory has cut his deficit to Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel to just one point in the championship.
v. Sebastian Vettel(German racing driver) suffered a front-left tyre failure who finished at the seventh spot.
About British Grand Prix
The British Grand Prix is a race of the FIA Formula One World Championship. It is firstly held in 1926
♦ It is currently held at the Silverstone Circuit near the village of Silverstone  in
North amptonshire in England.
♦ The British and Italian Grands Prix are the oldest continuously staged Formula One World Championship Grands Prix.

Indian judokas bag 3 medals in Asian Cadet Championships, Kyrgyzstan
India has bagged three medals, including gold in the Asian Cadet Judo Championship in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. 
Key Points:
iThangjam Tababi Devi of Manipur won the yellow metal for India in the girl’s below 44kg weight category.
ii. Haryana’s Simran clinched a bronze in the girl’s below 40kg division.
iiiParamjeet of Haryana bagged bronze medal in the boy’s below 90kg category.
iv. India fielded a 17-member contingent, which includes seven boys, eight girls and two coaches for the two-day event.
About Kyrgyzstan
♦ Capital: Bishkek
♦ Currency:Som (KGS).
♦ PM:Sooronbay Jeenbekov
♦ President:Almazbek Atambayev

Manudev wins National Masters snooker title
H Manudev from Karnataka won the first National Masters snooker tournament title in Chennai on July 16, 2017. He defeated former Asian champion, Alok Kumar.
Key Points:Manudev wins National Masters snooker title
i. Manudev, Alok, Chirag Ramakrishnan and Rafath Habib have qualified for the World Six-Red and Team Championship Snooker to be held in Egypt.
ii. They also qualified for the World Snooker Championship to be held in Malta. 
iii. Manudev started with a break of 64 to lead by 1-0.
iv. Earlier, in the semifinals, Alok Kumar bt Chirag and Manudev bt Rafath Habib
v. Manudev has received 63-33 frames in final and win the title.
vi. The final results frames of Manudev beat Alok Kumar is 68-42, 60-22, 65-59, 17-66, 63-33.

Kargil International Marathon “Run for Sarhad” concluded
The first ever Kargil International Marathon ‘Run for Sarhad’concluded with more than 800 runners from all over the world participating in the event. The event concluded on 17th of July 2017.
Key Points:
i. People of all ages participated in the 160, 120, 60, 40, 20 and 10 kilometers races.
ii. The marathon was organised by Sarhad Pune, Run Buddies, SEWAK, All Kargil Tour and Travel Association, SEMOK etc, with support from LAHDC Kargil and Indian Army.
iii. The marathon started from Tourist Facilitation Centre (TFC) Kargil and concluded at the same venue covering Drass War Memorial, Kaksar Harka Bahadur.
iv. ‘Divyang’ students of Munshi Habibullah School also participated in the marathon.
v. Major DP Singh, the first blade runner of India has also participated in the marathon.
vi. The winner of 60 km is ZaheerAbass. He ran in less than 6 hours.
vii. Sarfaraz Rahman, a young international runner from Meerut won in the category of 120 km race

Indian Damneet Singh wins silver medal at IAAF World U18 Championships in hammer throw
Indian youngster Damneet Singh has wonthe India’s first silver medal at the IAAF World U18 Championships. He has won in the boys’ hammer throw category.
Key Points:
i. The IAAF World U18 Championships being held in Nairobi, Kenya.
ii. Damneet has achieved best mark of 74.20m in his first attempt.
iiiUkraine’s Mykhaylo Kokhan won the gold medal with a throw of 82.31m.
ivRaphael Winekelvoss won the bronze with a 71.78m.
v. Damneet Singh qualified for the worlds with a 70.29m throw at the 2nd Asian Youth Athletics Championship held in Bangkok in May 2017.
vi. It is India’s first hammer medal at global championships.
About IAAF
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is the international governing body for the sport of athletics.
♦ It was founded on 17 July 1912.
♦ Headquarter in Monaco.
♦ President: Sebastian Coe

OBITUARY

Oscar Winner Martin Landau Passes away at 89
Oscar-winning Actor Martin Landau has died at the age of 89, announced on 17th of July 2017.He was an American film and television actor.
Key Points:
i. Martin Landau has been acting since the early 1950s making his professional acting Oscar Winner Martin Landau Passes away at 89debut on the sitcom The Goldbergs, starring Gertrude Berg and Eli Mintz.
ii. In the 1980s, Landau made a strong screen comeback starring in Francis Ford Coppola’s 1988 Tucker: The Man and His Dream, and Woody Allen’s Crimes and Misdemeanors.
iii. He earned Oscar nominations for both.
iv. He lift up the Best Supporting Oscar playing horror film star Bela Lugosi in Tim Burton’s Ed Wood.
v. In recent years he starred on television hits Entourage and Without a Trace.

BOOKS & AUTHORS

President of India to receive first copy of book ‘Future of Indian Universities: Comparative and International Perspectives’
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee receives the first copy of the book ‘Future of Indian Universities: Comparative and International Perspectives’ at a function to be held at Rashtrapati Bhavan on 17th July 2017.
Key Points:
i. It has been complied by Professor (Dr.) C. Raj Kumar, Vice Chancellor of JGU University and is published by Oxford University Press.
ii. The President receives the first copy of this book from Nobel Laureate Professor AmartyaSen who will formally release it.
iii. The book ‘Future of Indian Universities: Comparative and International Perspectives’ is the academic and research work of scholars, educationists and practitioners from India and abroad.
iv. It aims to provide international and comparative perspectives on higher education and highlights issues being faced by Indian Universities.

IMPORTANT DAYS

International Justice Day – July 17 2017
International Justice Day has been observed on 17th July. It marks the 19th anniversary of the 1998 Rome Statute, the founding treaty that created the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Key Points:
i. The World Day for International Justice is also referred to as International Criminal Justice Day or International Justice DayInternational Justice Day
ii. The ICC began its work in The Hague, Netherlands in 2002.
iii. This day aims the promotion of international criminal justice and it remains a clear showing of support for the ICC.
iv. The International Criminal Justice which is the only permanent criminal court that holds perpetrators of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity accountable.
v. This year, a new UN team tasked with investigating serious international crimes committed in Syria since 2011 will begin its work.
vi. This day recounts the positive steps toward accountability brought about by the ICC and other justice mechanisms on a difficult international landscape.
vii. The court works is to strengthen its own practices, backing from member countries is needed to carry out the court’s investigations, arrest warrants, and witness protection programs.
viii. Numerous African countries also announced their support for the ICC after South Africa, Burundi, and Gambia announced their withdrawals.
ix .The new government in Gambia stating it would remain an ICC member.
x. Zambia also came out strongly in support of membership with the ICC in public consultations launched by the Zambian government.

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