INTERNATIONAL

China Decided To Ban All Coal Use In Beijing By 2020
Beijing Municipal Environmental Protection Bureau on 4 August announced the plans to ban coal use in Beijing and five other districts by the end of 2020. The purpose of the ban is to fight increasing levels of air pollution in China’s major cities.

Russia Bans U.S.,European Union Food and Agricultural Imports
Russian President Vladimir Putin on 6 August signed a decree that bans imports of agricultural products from all countries that have imposed sanctions on Russia over the crisis in Ukraine. Major sanctions were made by the US and European Union (EU). Ban on the food imports, should continue for up to one year.

Haider al-Abadi Named As New Iraqi Prime Minister
Iraqi President Mohammed Fuad Masum named Haider al-Abadi as the new Iraqi Prime Minister on 11 August 2014. Before being nominated for the post of Iraqi Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi was deputy parliament speaker.

Ukrainian President Dissolved Parliament
Ukraine’s president Petro Poroshenko on 25 August dissolved parliament. A snap election to the  Ukraine will be held on 26 October 2014.The date of the election was announced by President Petro Poroshenko.


INDIA & WORLD

India and Nepal Signed 3 Agreements
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 3 August met Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala in Kathmandhu, the captital of Nepal.  Later, three agreements were signed between India and Nepal, in the presence of the two Prime Ministers. Under the first agreement, India will provide a grant assistance worth NRs 69 million to supply iodated salt to curb goitre and other diseases related with iodine deficiency. The second agreement was regarding the amendment of Articles 17 and 18 of the Pancheswor Multiple Project. The third agreement is about cooperation between Nepal Television and Doordarshan, the state-owned television stations of both the countries.

India Ranked 5th Amongst Top 10 Wind Power Producers
The “Renewables 2014 Global Status Report” released on 18 August. According to the report, India ranked fifth amongst top ten wind power producers in the  world by adding 1,700 MW capacity in 2013. With 16,100 MW wind power produced in 2013, China was ranked World’ top wind power producing country.

India and Czech Republic Signed MoU On Technical Cooperation In Railways
India and Czech Republic on 19 August 2014 signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on technical cooperation in railway sector. This MoU was signed between the Union Ministry of Railways and Czech Railways (Ceske Drahy) of the Czech Republic and Association of Czech Railway Industry (ACRI) of the Czech Republic.

Indo-Nepal Joint Military Training Exercise Concluded
The militaries of India and Nepal was jointly conducted a Combined Training Exercise, known as Surya Kiran-VII, from 18 – 31 August 2014 near Pithoragarh district in Uttarakhand.


NATIONAL

Union Cabinet Approves Amendments To Juvenile Justice Act
The Union Cabinet on 6 August approved the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill, 2014 to amend the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act, 2000. The bill will place minors above the age of 16, accused of heinous crimes like rape and murder, in the adults’ category.

PM Narendra Modi Announced Pradhan Mantri Krishi Seenchayi Yojana
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 19 August announced the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Seenchayi Yojana to meet the irrigation needs of all farmers across the country. Sum of 1000 crore rupees has been allocated for implementation of the scheme.

Union Cabinet Approved Rs 1 lakh crore ‘ Digital India Project ‘
The Union Cabinet has approved the Digital India project on 20 August. The project, which has a total overlay of Rs 1 lakh crore, aims to ensure that government services are available to citizens electronically and help people gain benefits from the latest information and communication technology.

PM Narendra Modi Launched ‘ Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana ‘
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 28 August launched ‘ Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) ‘ in New Delhi. The scheme intends to accomplish the objective of housing for all by providing basic banking accounts with a debit card with inbuilt accident insurance. The government aims to open as many as 1 crore bank accounts on the first day itself.


STATES

Uttarkhand Govt Constituted Committee On Industries Using Silica Dust
A high level committee has been constituted by the Uttarakhand government on 8 August with a view to conduct a detailed survey of the industries using silica dust in the state. The panel would conduct its study and submit its report within 2 months. The health examination of those working in industries using silica dust would be carried out to find out if they are suffering from silicosis or other respiratory diseases caused due to coming in contact of silicia dust.

Delhi Police Launched Whatsapp Helpline To Curb Corruption
Delhi Police on 10 August launched Whatsapp helpline to curb corruption. Under the facility, a person can just call and register the complaint and also send a recorded audio or video clips if any policeman harasses or a person demands bribe.

Tamilnadu Chief Minister Announced ‘ Amma Baby Care Kit ‘ Scheme
Tamilnadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on 12 August announced ambitious welfare scheme called ‘Amma Baby Care Kit’. It is aimed at new born infants. This scheme only applies to the infants born in government hospitals.

Uttarakhand Govt Launched Food Security Scheme
The Uttarakhand government on 16 August introduced a food security scheme on the pattern of the National Food Security Act. This was decided at the Cabinet meeting. The scheme will cater to the Below Poverty Line and Above Poverty Line families across the State.

Kerala Cabinet Ratified New Liquor Policy
Kerala state cabinet cabinet on 27 August 2014 ratified the new liquor policy. The policy was contemplated to shut down bars attached to hotels below the five-star category .It was a part of governments plan to reduce availability of liquor.


CONFERENCES

47th ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting Held In Nay Pyi Taw
The 47th ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting (AMM) was held on 8 August 2014 in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar under the theme “Moving forward in Unity to a Peaceful and Prosperous Community”. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Foreign Ministers issued a joint statement urging the issues of Korea Peninsular and Ukraine including seven points that concerned the international affairs and South China Dispute. ASEAN comprises ten member countries — Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.


AWARDS & HONOURS

Jaitley, Karan Singh, Sharad Yadav Conferred with ‘Outstanding Parliamentarian Awards ‘
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley ( for 2010), Congress leader Karan Singh (2011) and JD(U) President Sharad Yadav (2012) are conferred with ‘Outstanding Parliamentarian Awards’ by the President Pranab Mukherjee on 12 August in New Delhi. The awards were given for their invaluable contribution in discharge of their parliamentary duties.

Indian-origin Professor Manjul Bhargava Won ‘Nobel Prize of Maths ‘
Two Indian-origin professors have won global prizes in the field of mathematics with one of them being awarded the Fields Medal, known as the “Nobel Prize of mathematics”. Manjul Bhargava won the Fields Medal while Subhash Khot won the Rolf Nevanlinna Prize, awarded by the International Mathematical Union (IMU), at the International Congress of Mathematicians 2014 held in Seoul on 13 August.

Army Major Mukund Varadarajan Honoured with Ashok Chakra
India’s highest peacetime gallantry award ‘Ashoka Chakra’ has been awarded posthumously to Major Mukund Varadarajan of 44th Battalion of the Rastriya Rifles (22 Rajput). 55 gallantry awards (peacetime) were announced on the eve of 68th Independence Day on 14 August 2014. There have been one Ashoka Chakra, 12 Shaurya Chakras, 39 Sena Medal, one Nao Sena Medal and two Vayu Sena Medal this year.

Pakistani Journalist Asma Shirazi Won 2014 Peter Mackler Award
Asma Shirazi, Pakistan’s first female war correspondent and host of popular TV talk shows, was named 2014 Winner of Peter Mackler Award for Courageous and Ethical Journalism on 22 August. Shirazi is the second woman to win the award since its creation in 2008, after Honduran radio news editor Karla Rivas won in 2011.


SPORTS & GAMES

India Finishes Fifth At 20th Commonwealth Games
India finishes 5th with 64 medals (15 gold, 30 silver and 19 bronze) at the 20th Commonwealth Games (CWG) 2014. India’s total medal tally was thus 64, which is far less than the 19th Commonwealth Games of 2010 at New Delhi, where India won a total of 101 medals. England topped the medal table for the first time in 28 years with 58 golds, 59 silvers and 57 bronzes. Australia was on second position, Canada on third and Scotland was on 4th position. The 2014 Commonwealth Games (officially the XX Commonwealth Games) were held in Glasgow, Scotland, from 23 July to 3 August 2014. Its the 3rd time that Scotland is hosting this event; the previous two being in Edinburgh (1970 & 1986). The 21st Commonwealth Games will be held in Gold Coast City, Queensland, Australia between 4 to 15 April 2018.  

Katie Ledecky Sets World Record In 1,500-Meter Freestyle
Katie Ledecky, an American distance swimmer on 23 August created a World Record in Women’s 1500 Meter Freestyle at the 2014 Pan Pac Championships on the Gold Coast, Australia. To create the new record Ledecky swam the distance in 15 minutes 28.36 seconds. She crushed her own previous 1500-metre freestyle record of swimming the distance in 15 minutes 34.23 seconds at an untaqpered meet in The Woodlands, Texas in June 2014. Ledecky won her fifth gold medal at the Gold Coast meet after defeating Lauren Boyle of New Zealand by more than 27 seconds.

Jammu and Kashmir To Host Football Federation Cup In August 2015
The All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced on 18 August that Jammu and Kashmir will host Football Federation Cup in August 2015.

Himachal To Host First Paragliding World Cup In India
India’s northern state of Himachal Pradesh has been selected as venue to host Paragliding World Cup 2015. This will be the first para-gliding World Cup to be hosted in India. The tournament will be organized under the auspices of Para-gliding World Cup Association, France.The World Cup will be hosted in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh from 24 October 2015 and will see around 150 top ranked pilots of the world besides 500 free flying pilots as participants.


ECONOMY

RBI Third Bi-monthly Monetary Policy Statement 2014-15
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in its third Bi-monthly Monetary Policy statement 2014-15 announced on 5 August, has kept the Short-term lending (repo) rate unchanged at 8%. The Reverse Repo rate has also been left unchanged at 7% and the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) is also the same at 4%. The only major change is in Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR) which has been slashed by 50 basis points (bps) to 22% from previous 22.50%.Estimates GDP growth at 5.5% for current fiscal(2014-15).

Union Cabinet Approves FDI in Defence and Railways
The Union Cabinet on 6 August allowed foreign investment in the Railways for the first time and raised limit for such investment in the defence sector, steps intended to raise funds for expansion of the Railways and encourage domestic manufacture of arms. Under this proposal the government is to increase the FDI limit in the defence industry to 49% from 26% and from nil to 100% in railway infrastructure of the country.

RBI issued Draft Guidelines For ‘Anytime Anywhere’ BBPS
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 7 August issued draft guidelines for the implementation of Bharat Bill Payment System (BPPS), an anytime anywhere bill payment system.The draft mentions the requirements and the basic framework of operating the BBPS, and stipulates the eligibility criteria, standards for settlement model and customer grievance redressal, roles and responsibilities and scope for entities seeking to be part of BBPS.

Mukesh Ambani Is India’s Richest Man
The wealth research firm Wealth-X of India’s richest individuals latest study report released on 13 August. According to the report, the top five Indian billionaires led by Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani collectively control $85.5 billion (about Rs 5,23,897 crore) in personal wealth, accounting for nearly half of the country’s total billionaire wealth. Mukesh Ambani remains the richest man in the country with an estimated net worth of $24.4 billion (about Rs 1,49,474 crore).


SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

China Successfully Launched Remote Sensing Satellite
China on 9 August successfully launched the “Yaogan XX” a remote-sensing satellite to carry out scientific experiments and provide early alerts natural disasters. The Yaogan XX satellite blasted off on the back of a Long March 4C carrier rocket from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in the country’s northwestern Gobi desert. The launch marked the 190th mission for the nation’s long march rocket family.

IBM Develops A New Chip That Functions Like A Brain
IBM researchers have announced on 9 August the development of a new computer chip that is inspired by the brain, mimicking the way that the mind can recognize patterns utilizing a web of interconnected transistors to simulate neural networks. The chip or processor is named TrueNorth, and it contains more than 5.4 billion transistors, yet requires no more power to function than a hearing aid (just 70 milliwatts of power versus the minimum of 35 watts required by current Intel processors, with have 1.4 billion transistors).

PM Narendra Modi Dedicates ‘ INS Kolkata ‘ To The Nation
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 16 August dedicated India’s indigenously designed warship ‘ INS Kolkata ‘ to the nation. With this, INS Kolkata was commissioned in Indian Navy at the Naval Dockyard in Mumbai, Maharashtra. The 6800-tonne Kolkata class warship has been constructed by the Mazagon Docks Ltd, Mumbai and designed by the Navy’s Design Bureau.

NASA’s Scientists Developed ‘SMAP’ Satellite To Combat Drought
NASA scientists, including one of Indian-origin, developed Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite that can predict the severity of droughts worldwide and help farmers maximize the crop yield.The mission is scheduled to launch in November 2014 and will collect the local data of agricultural and water managers that are needed worldwide.


PERSONS IN NEWS

A) APPOINTMENTS

K V Chowdary is new CBDT chairman
Senior Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officer K V Chowdary (full name – Kosaraju Veeraiah Chowdary) has been appointed as the new Chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), the top policy making body of the Income Tax department. K.V. Chowdary, a 1978-batch officer, on 1 August took charge of his office. He will have tenure of three months.He succeed R K Tewari. He retired on 31 July 2014.

President Appointed New Governors of Four States
President of India, Pranab Mukherjee on 26 August appointed new Governors of four states, namely Maharashtra, Goa , Karnataka and Rajasthan.
The Governors names are:-
1) Kalyan Singh – Rajasthan Governor
2) Vajubhai Rudabhai Vala – Karnataka Governor
3) Ch. Vidyasagar Rao – Maharashtra Governor
4) Mridula Sinha – Goa Governor

B)RESIGNS

Maharashtra Governor K Sankaranarayanan Resigned
Maharashtra governor K Sankaranarayanan resigned from his office on 24 August.He tendered his resignation in the backdrop of being transferred to Mizoram. He refused to take charge of his new assignment.

C)DEATHS

Legendary Cartoonist Pran Kumar Sharma Died
Legendary cartoonist Pran Kumar Sharma, popularly known as Pran, who created the comic book character like Chacha Chaudhary and Sabu, died on 5 August in Gurgaon at the age of 75. He was 75. He was born on 15 August 1938 in Kasur near Lahore (now Pakistan).  He created the character ‘Dabbu’ for a Delhi-based newspaper ‘Milap’.

D)VISITORS

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi Visited Nepal
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Nepal on 3-4 August 2014. During the visit, Narendra Modi met Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala in Kathmandhu, the captital of Nepal. The two leaders discussed various issues including Nepal’s peace process and constitution-drafting process as well as economic issues. After the talks, Modi and Koirala witnessed the signing of three agreements.

E)MISCELLANEOUS

Edward Snowden Granted Three-year Residence Permit In Russia
Former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden has received a residence permit in Russia on 7 August 2014, which is valid for three years. Earlier in 2013, Snowden was granted a one-year temporary asylum, which ended on 1 August 2014.


PLACES  IN  NEWS

Two Ancient Mayan Cities Found In Mexico Jungle
In the month of August 2014 Archaeologists have found two ancient Mayan cities Lagunita and Tamchen hidden in the jungle of south-eastern Mexico. They discovered the two cities of Lagunita and Tamchen on the Yucatan peninsula by examining aerial photographs of the region.


ABBREVIATIONS

ASEAN ——  Association of South East Asian Nations

IFTU ——-    International Federation of Trade Unions

WFI ——–    Wrestling Federation of India

CERSAI — –  Central Registry of Securitisation Asset Reconstruction and Security


BOOKS IN NEWS

‘ One Life is Not Enough: An Autobiography ‘ Released
An autobiography of the former External Affairs Minister and veteran Congress Party leader Natwar Singh was released on 1 August. The book titled “One Life is Not Enough” is penned by Kunwar Natwar Singh.This book has been in news and controversy since past few days because it discloses much information about Sonia Gandhi, the President of the Congress Party.


COMMITTEES

Hari Gautam Committee To Review The Status Of UGC
A four-member Committee under the chairmanship of former UGC chairman Hari Gautam has been constituted by the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) on 3 August with a view to review the present status of Universities Grants Commission’s (UGC). The committee will suggest ways to restructure and reorganise the panel to attain better performance in order to meet desired objectives.


IMPORTANT DAYS AND DATES

World Humanitarian Day Observed Across The World
World Humanitarian Day was observed across the world on 19 August 2014. The day is observed to recognise humanitarian personnel and those who have lost their lives working for humanitarian causes. The theme for the year 2014 is The World Needs More Humanitarian Heroes.World Humanitarian Day is also an opportunity to celebrate the spirit that inspires humanitarian work around the globe. The events of the day included wreath-laying ceremony at UN Headquarters in New York to honour aid workers killed in the line of duty. The day was designated by the United Nations General Assembly to coincide with the anniversary of the 2003 bombing of the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad, Iraq. The bombing killed 22 people, including UN envoy Sergio Vieira de Mello. The Day is observed annually on 19 August.

August 29 Is Celebrated As The ‘National Sports Day’
August 29 is celebrated as the National Sports Day in dedication to the great hockey player Dhyan Chand.This day is celebrated by organizing friendly matches between different Indian hockey teams at the Dhyan Chand National stadium in New Delhi.The National Stadium was constructed in the respect and honor of Dhyan Chand. Major Dhyan Chand was India’s greatest hockey player. He has scored over 1000 goals between 1926 and 1948. He helped India win 3 Olympic Gold medals including the first in 1928 (Amsterdum Olympic games) and then in 1932 ( Los Angeles Olympic games) and 1936 (Berlin Olympic games).

11 Responses to “August 2014 Current Affairs Study Material”

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