INTERNATIONAL

Tony Abbott is Australia’s new Prime Minister
Tony Abbott , Leader of the Liberal Party elected as the Prime Minister of Australia on 8 October.Liberal Party won the 44th Parliamentary elections. Liberal Party defeated the in-power Labor Party in the general elections held on 7 September 2013 to return back in power as the Liberal-National coalition for the first time in six years.With this win, Tony Abbott the leader of the Liberal-National Coalition will become the Prime Minister of the Country and successor of Kevin Rudd of the Labor Party.The coalition won 88 seats in the 150 seat Parliament. The ruling Labor Party was successful in winning 57 seats.

US and Russia Agreement on Removing Chemical Weapons on Syria
The United States and Russia have on 14 September agreed on a framework for removing chemical weapons from Syria .The break- through was announced after three day talks between the US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva.The USA and Russia have agreed that Syria’s chemical weapons must be destroyed or removed by mid-2014. USA outlined a six-point framework under which Syria must hand over a full list of its stockpile within a week.

European Union Pledges 650 million euros To Somalia
The European Union has pledged 650 million euros ($868 million) in aid to Somalia to back a three-year reconstruction plan aimed at building on fragile security gains in the country.International donors met in Brussels on 16 September to approve Somalia’s “New Deal.”International donors pledged 1.8 billion euros for Somalia.

232 Million Global Migrants Living Abroad World Wide
On 12 September According to the new figures from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA) showed that 232 million people, or 3.2 percent of the world’s population, live abroad worldwide, compared with 175 million in 2000 and 154 million in 1990.With more people than ever living abroad, Asia sees the largest increase of international migrants in the past decade, and the US remains the most popular destination.New figures from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA) showed that 232 million people, or 3.2 percent of the world’s population, live abroad worldwide, compared with 175 million in 2000 and 154 million in 1990.The new estimates include breakdowns by region and country of destination and origin, and by sex and age. The north, or developed countries, is home to 136 million international migrants, compared with 96 million in the south, or developing countries.

Egyptian Court Bans Muslim Brotherhood
The Egypt court on 23 September has banned the Muslim Brotherhood from carrying out any activities in the country.The court also ordered the seizure of any assets held by the Brotherhood, estimated by the interim military-backed government to have more than a million members.The administrative court gave the ruling after a lawsuit was filed by the leftist Tagammu Party to review the Islamist group’s status as a non-governmental organisation.


INDIA & WORLD

3rd India – Republic of Korea Foreign Policy and Security Dialogue Held In Seoul
The 3rd India – Republic of Korea (ROK) Foreign Policy and Security Dialogue (FPSD) was held in Seoul on 2 September .The Indian side was led by Mr. Ashok K. Kantha, Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and the Republic of Korea (ROK)  side was led by First Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr. Kim Kyou-hyun.Both nations discussed ways to further expand and deepen their Strategic Partnership. They undertook a comprehensive review of bilateral ties, including in the fields of economic collaboration, defense and security cooperation, cultural exchanges and people-to-people contacts.They agreed to step up cooperation in the spheres of maritime and cyber security.It was agreed that the 4th India-ROK Foreign Policy and Security Dialogue will be held at New Delhi at a mutually convenient time in 2014.

Government Approves India-Abu Dhabi Air Services Agreement
The India-Abu Dhabi bilateral air services agreement, which ran into controversy following the Jet-Etihad deal, was approved by the Government of India on 2 September enabling their airlines to fly 50,000 seats each week, up from the current level of 13,700.The agreement received post-facto approval of the Union Cabinet at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in NewDelhi

7th India-Laos Joint Commission Meeting Held In Vientiane
The 7th India-Lao Joint Commission Meeting on bilateral cooperation was held in Vientiane on 9 September.In the meeting Indian side was led by External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid and the Laos side was led by Dr. Thongloun Sisoulith, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs.An Agreement under Line of Credit for four Irrigation Projects in three provinces in the Lao PDR for 30.94 million US dollars was signed and conversion of another Line of Credit to substitute the Nam Boun-2 hydro power plant by the extension of transmission lines to Thasala-Laksao amounting to 35.25 million US dollars was approved. The projects will contribute to socio-economic development in Lao PDR.The two nations identified agriculture, defence, ICT, culture, education, health, trade and investment promotion, mining as priority areas of cooperation between the two countries that would give further impetus to bilateral relations.

India, Japan Signed Statement To Study LNG Pricing
India and Japan on 9 September signed a statement on conducting a joint study on the pricing of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) with an aim to form a transparent and globally competitive LNG price in the Asia Pacific market.India’s Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Veerappa Moily and Japanese Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry Toshimitsu Motegi signed the joint statement in Tokyo.

India – China Agreed To Enhance Cooperation In Media Sector
India and China on 16 September have agreed to initiate steps to include media cooperation as part of 2014 celebrations being observed to commemorate “Friendly Exchanges” between the two countries.The agreement was a part of the first meeting of the India-China Media Forum being held in New Delhi. The meeting took place between Manish Tewari, Minister for Information & Broadcasting of India and Cai Ming Zhao, Minister of State Council Information Office of China.

India and US signed First Commercial Agreement Under Nuclear Deal
Five years after India and the US signed a landmark civil nuclear deal, the two countries have clinched the first commercial agreement on civilian nuclear power cooperation.President Barack Obama announced the agreement on 27 September after his meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at the White House Oval Office.India’s nuclear operator NPCIL (Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited) and US firm Westinghouse have signed an agreement that will pave the way for setting up an atomic plant in India.


NATIONAL

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Launched ‘ Gandhi Heritage Portal ‘ In NewDelhi
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on 2 September launched the ‘ Gandhi Heritage Portal ‘ in New Delhi.The Gandhi heritage Portal is set up to preserve, protect and disseminate original writings of Gandhiji.The Gandhi Heritage Portal is a technology-driven initiative aimed at making Gandhiji accessible all over the world on an electronic platform. It would be one of the most authentic open source archives on the life and work and thought of Mahatma Gandhi.

3rd All India Survey on Higher Education Launched
On 3 September Minister of State for Human Resource Development Jitin Prasada launched the third All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE)-2012-13 .The survey was initiated in the year 2011 to prepare a robust data-base on higher education.Data for the year 2010-11 was collected during the first year of the survey.Keeping in view the usefulness of data collected during the very first year, Ministry has decided to make this survey an annual exercise of data collection in higher education sector. The survey covers all the Higher Education (HE) Institutions of the country including Universities, Colleges, and Stand-Alone Institutions.The main items of data collection under survey are Basic details, Programme details, Teaching & Non-Teaching Staff, Student Enrolment, Examination Results and Scholarships.

Judicial Appointments Commission Bill Passed In Rajya Sabha
The Rajya Sabha on 5 September passed the Judicial Appointments Commission Bill, which seeks to scrap the collegium system of appointing judges to higher courts.The bill, which entails Constitutional amendment, seeks to set up a Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) to recommend appointment and transfer of Supreme Court and High Court judges.

Lok Sabha Passed Bill To Set Up First National Aviation University
Rajiv Gandhi National Aviation University Bill, 2013 was passed by the Lok Sabha on 6 September.The purpose of the bill is to establish the first-ever national aviation university in India, called Rajiv Gandhi National Aviation University, which is named after Rajiv Gandhi. The University would train the cabin crew, pilots as well as aircraft engineers.The proposed university would come up at Sonia Gandhi’s constituency of Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh.

Cabinet Committee On Economic Affairs Approved Proposal For Restructuring SJSRY
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 3 September approved the proposal for restructuring of the centrally sponsored Scheme of Swarna Jayanti Shahari Rozgar Yojana (SJSRY) in the 12th Plan and as the National Urban Livelihoods Mission (NULM) with an allocation of approximately Rs. 6,405 crore.The mission of National Urban Livelihoods Mission (NULM) is reduction of poverty and vulnerability of the urban poor households by enabling them to access gainful self-employment and skilled wage employment opportunities.The mission will also aim at providing shelter equipped with essential services to the urban homeless in a phased manner.

President Gave Assent To Land Acquisition Bill
The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill 2013,has received the assent of the President of India on 27 Septmeber.The bill has now become law.The Lok Sabha passed the bill on 29 August 2013 and Rajya Sabha passed the bill on 4 September 2013.The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Law, 2013, replaces a British-era law of 1894. It provides for fair compensation to owners whose land is taken over, brings transparency to the process and lays down measures for rehabilitation of those displaced.


STATES

Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare Launched New Health Initiatives For Assam
Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare Ghulam Nabi Azad on 1 September launched several new health initiatives worth Rs.500 crores under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) for the strengthening of healthcare services in Assam.The new initiatives are – Free Generic Drug Service, Rashtriya Bal Swasthya karyakram (RBSK), National Iron Plus Initiative, Fleet of 359 New Ambulances for National Ambulance Service.Ghulam Nabi Azad also inaugurated Mother and Child Tracking System Call Centre and Tele-Radiology Project under NRHM.

Himachal Pradesh Scrapped Palchan-Rohtang Ropeway Project
Himachal Pradesh cabinet on 4 September decided to cancel construction of Palchan-Rohtang ropeway project in Kullu district. The proposed project was planned to transport around 9000 visitors between Palchan and Rohtang daily to decongest the Manali-Leh road. There is a huge rush of tourists between May and July every year.

Kerala Government Launched ‘ E-Payment ‘ Facility
The Kerala Government has launched on 5 September an “e-payment facility” system enabling people to pay various utility bills and access Government department services online.The payment of Utility bills of Kerala State Electricity Board, Kerala Water Authority, BSNL and university fees could be done through the gateway using credit and debit cards of 66 banks identified for the scheme.One can avail the service at all Akshaya e-centers of the government which would act as decentralized information hubs and service delivery points.

MP Government Decided To Constitute State Disaster Emergency Response Force
The Madhya Pradesh Government on 10 September decided to constitute a State Disaster Emergency Response Force to deal with any calamity more effectively and provide immediate relief to affected persons.Initially, the State Disaster Emergency Response Force will be set up in Bhopal, Indore, Gwalior and Jabalpur districts.100 jawans will be deployed in each of these districts.

Union Government Approved 1000 crore Proposal To Develop J&K sports
The Union Government of India on 16 September approved a special package 1000 crore Rupees to strengthen sports infrastructure in Jammu and Kashmir .The objective of the special package is construction of new stadiums and sports fields across the state.The Jammu and Kashmir Government made a policy under which every block in the state will be provided with both indoor and outdoor sports complexes. Every panchayat in the state will be provided with a sports field, and the government will also upgrade the already available sports equipments.

Prime Minister Manmohan Laid The Foundation Stone For New Airport In Rajasthan
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on 21 September laid the foundation stone for a new airport at Kishangarh town in Ajmer District, Rajasthan.Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singhon also announced that small destinations in the country will have air connectivity with a network of more than 100 airports, planned to meet the expected passenger load capacity of 30 crore, by 2020.The first such airport will come up in Kishangarh town in Rajasthan’s Ajmer district, the airport which is scheduled to get operational by 2016.


CONFERENCES

8th G-20 Summit Held In Saint Petersburg
The eighth G20 Summit was held at St. Petersburg , Russia on 5 – 6 September 2013.The G20 nations discussed ways to ensure economic growth and financial stability, create jobs and combat unemployment, stimulate investment and promote multilateral trade, international development and anti-corruption. The members of the Group of Twenty (G-20) are: Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Great Britain, Germany, European Union, India, Indonesia, Italy, Canada, China, Mexico, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, USA, Turkey, France, South Africa, Republic of Korea, and Japan. The presidency of the G20 rotates annually among its members.During the summit, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh focused on the ongoing economic crisis and urged the G-20 nations to pay more attention to their monetary policies.The 2014 G-20 Australia summit will be the ninth meeting of the G-20 heads of government.It will be held in Brisbane, the capital city of Queensland, Australia, on 15-16 November 2014 .In a 27-page declaration adopted at the end of the two-day Summit , the group of 20 industrialised and major emerging economies also reaffirmed its commitment to roll back new protectionist measures.
Important Points of G-20 Leaders’ Declaration :-
* Recognising the risk of economic slowdown and weakening trade posed by protectionism, the G20 has decided to extend until the end of 2016 its standstill commitment to further progress in removing barriers and impediments to global trade and investment.
* G-20 Leaders endorsed an ambitious action plan to change national tax rules that encourage multinational companies to shift their profits to low- or no-tax jurisdictions, allowing them not to pay tax on much of their income.
* The declaration committed itself to cooperate to ensure that policies implemented to support domestic growth also support global growth and financial stability and to manage their spillovers other countries.
* It noted that the most urgent need is to increase the momentum of the global recovery, generate higher growth and better jobs while strengthening the foundations for long term growth and avoiding policies that could cause the recovery to falter or promote growth at other countries’ expense.
* Agreeing on the Action Plan, the leaders said cross-border tax evasion and avoidance undermine public finances and trust in the fairness of the tax system.
* The Summit also shared Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s views on the need for orderly exit from the monetary stimulus undertaken in the context of 2008 economic crisis.


AWARDS & HONOURS

Zubin Mehta Received Tagore Award
World acclaimed orchestra conductor Zubin Mehta was conferred the prestigious Tagore Award for Cultural Harmony on 6 September by President Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi.The award carries an amount of One Crore Rupees, a citation in a scroll, a plaque as well as an exquisite traditional handicraft/handloom item.He is the second recipient after sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar.

Amitabh Bachchan Honoured With ‘ 2013 Global Diversity’  Award
Veteran Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan was conferred with the ‘ 2013 Global Diversity Award ‘ at the House of Commons in the Palace of Westminster, Britain on 11 September.Speaker of the House of Commons, Rt Hon John Bercow MP, presented the award to Amitabh Bachchan.Bachchan, who has acted in more than 180 films, was voted the greatest star of the millennium in a 1999 BBC poll.France’s highest civilian honour, the Knight of the Legion of Honour, was conferred upon him by the French Government in 2007 for his exceptional career in the world of cinema and beyond.

Indian Freedom Fighter Gets ‘ House of Commons Award ‘
On 11 September An Indian freedom fighter was posthumously conferred a ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ at UK’s House of Commons for his contribution during India’s independence movement and its journey afterwards.Britain’s Minister for Business Engagement with India Gregory Barker and Virendra Sharma, Chair of the Indo-British All Party Parliamentary Group jointly presented the award to late Jawaharlal Darda’s son, Vijay Jawaharlal Darda, MP and Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Lokmat, the most widely circulated Marathi language newspaper.

John Abraham Honoured With ‘ Pride of the Nation Award ‘
Bollywood actor John Abraham has been conferred with the Pride of the Nation award on 16 September for his attempt to raise the sensitive issue of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination through his role as a RAW agent in Madras Cafe.The award was presented by Anti Terrorist Front chairman Maninderjeet Singh in New Delhi. All-India Anti-Terrorist Front (AIATF) is an anti-terrorist organisation led by Maninderjeet Singh Bitta.In Madras Cafe film John Abraham made a courageous attempt to unravel the conspiracy behind the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. The film “Madras Cafe” is set in the late 80s and early 1990s, during the time of Sri Lankan civil war and the assassination of then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.

Malala Yousafzai Received ‘Amnesty ‘ International Award
Pakistani education rights activist, Malala Yousafzai has been named as the recipient of 2013 Amnesty International’s highest award.Malala received Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award along with American singer and human rights activist Harry Belafonte at ceremony on 17 September in Dublin, Ireland.The Ambassador of Conscience Award is the human rights group’s highest honour, recognizing individuals who have promoted and enhanced the cause of human rights through their life and by example.She made her first public appearance on 12 July 2013, her 16th birthday, when she delivered a speech at the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

President of India Presented National Communal Harmony Awards For The Year 2011 & 2012
The President of India Pranab Mukherjee presented the National Communal Harmony Awards for the year 2011 and 2012 at a function in New Delhi.
National Communal Harmony Award for 2011: - Odisha’s MD Janab Haji Abdul Bari and Mizoram’s Khamliana jointly awarded for the year 2011 individual category. Both are social activists.
National Communal Harmony Award for 2012:- The Foundation for Amity and National Solidarity, Delhi awarded for Organisational category. The foundation formed in 1984.The Foundation works for spreading amity and communal harmony.

Bunker Roy and Malala Yousafzai Received Clinton Global Citizens Awards
India environmentalist Bunker Roy and Pakistan’s teenage education activist Malala Yousafzai on 23 September 2013 declared as winners of the Clinton Global Citizens Awards for the year 2013. Roy is the founder of the Barefoot College, which has been providing solutions to problems in rural communities for more than 40 years.Malala Yousufzai has co-founded Malala Fund with the intension to continue support for universal access to education.They received these awards during Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting on 24 September in New York City.The Clinton Global Citizen Awards were launched in 2007 to honour outstanding individuals for their visionary leadership, demonstrated impact, and sustainable and scalable work in solving global issues.


SPORTS & GAMES

US Open Tennis Tournament 2013 Winners
Women’s Singles :- On 8 September Serena Williams (U.S) won the US Open Tennis Tournament 2013 Women’s singles title after defeated Victoria Azarenka of Belarus in the final at Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York.With this win Serena Williams secured her fifth US Open title and 17th Grand Slam title of the overall career.
Men’s Singles :- Rafael Nadal (Spain) won the 2013 men’s singles U.S. Open title after defeated Novak Djokovic (Serbia) in the final.It is Nadal’s second US Open title, and his 13th Grand Slam.
Women’s Doubles :- Czech duo Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka won the U.S. Open women’s doubles title after defeated Australia’s Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua in the final.
Men’s Doubles :- The pair of Leander Paes of India and Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic won the doubles title after defeated Alexander Peya of Austria, and Bruno Soares of Brazil in the final .Leander Paes has earlier won the US open title two times .Now Paes has 14 major titles in his cupboard, including six mixed doubles trophies.

Tokyo To Host 2020 Summer Olympics
On 7 September Tokyo has been chosen to host the 2020 summer Olympic Games by the event’s organising committee, beating out Istanbul and Madrid in the final vote tally.Japan won the right to host Olympic Games for the second time. It had previously hosted the Games in 1964.

Wrestling Selected for 2020 Olympic Games
Wrestling regained entry into the Olympic Games program on 8 September after the International Olympic Committee selected the sport for inclusion in the 2020 and 2024 Games over bids from squash, baseball and softball.IOC at its 125th session held in Buenos Aires, Argentina decided to include wrestling in the 2020 Olympics in addition to the 25 core sports.Wrestling, squash and baseball/softball were in contention for being included as an additional sport in the 2020 Olympics.

Afghanistan Won SAFF Championship 2013
Afghanistan, for the first time in its history, won the trophy of  South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) Championship 2013 defeated India 2-0 in the final held at Dasharath Stadium in Kathmandu on 11 September. India has won the championship six times (1993, 1997, 1999, 2005, 2009, 2011).The next edition of the SAFF Championship will be held in India in 2015.

Mohameddan Sporting Won Durand Foot Ball Cup
Kolkata’s Mohammedan Sporting club won the 126th Durand Foot ball tournament on 19 September as it defeated ONGC 2-1 in the final at the Ambedkar Stadium in New Delhi.They have lifted the cup after 73 years having won it back in 1940.The Durand Football Tournament was started at Simla in the year 1888 by Sir Henry Mortimer Durand, who was then, the Foreign Secretary to Government of India. Durand is the third oldest football tournament in the world and oldest in Asia and India.

Sania Mirza Wins Pan Pacific Open Doubles Title
Sania Mirza of India and Cara Black of Zimbabwe won the Toray Pan Pacific Open tennis championship women’s doubles title after defeated Hao-Ching Chan (Chinese Taipei) and Liezel Huber (USA) in the final at Tokyo on 28 September .This was Sania’s fourth title of the season.

India Won Sultan of Johor Cup Hockey Tournament 2013
India defeated Malaysia 3-0 to win 3rd Under-21 Sultan of Johor Cup hockey tournament in Johor Bahru on 29 September .The goals from the Indian side were scored by Amon Mirash Tirkey (22nd), Affan Yousuf (52nd) and Manpreet Singh (64th).


ECONOMY

Microsoft Decided To Buy Nokia’s Mobile Phone Unit and Services
Microsoft Corporation and Nokia Corporation on 3 September announced that both companies have decided to enter into a transaction whereby Microsoft will purchase substantially all of Nokia’s Devices & Services business, license Nokia’s patents, and license and use Nokia’s mapping services.Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will pay 3.79 billion Euros to purchase substantially all of Nokia’s Devices & Services business, and 1.65 billion Euros to license Nokia’s patents, for a total transaction price of 5.44 billion Euros in cash.Nokia Corporation is a Finnish multinational communications and information technology corporation (originally a paper production plant) that is headquartered in Espoo, Finland.Its principal products are mobile telephones and portable IT devices.Nokia owns a company named Nokia Solutions and Networks, which provides telecommunications network equipment and services.

India Now Has 7850 Ultra Wealthy Individuals
On 11 September According to the ” 2013 Wealth-X report “, India has 7850 UHNW (Ultra-High-Net-Worth) individuals in 2013 compared to 7730 in 2012 an increased of 1.6 percent. Out of these, 103 individuals have wealth of over USD 1 Billion dollars. The billionaire club has shrunk from 109 people in 2012 to 103 in 2013.Total combined wealth of billionaires also fell by 5.3 per cent $180 billion ($190 bn in 2012).A city-wise analysis shows that more than 90 per cent of India’s UHNW population live in top 10 cities including Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Pune, Gurgaon and Jaipur.Mumbai and Delhi, however, dominate with more than 50 per cent of the country’s UHNW population based in one of these two cities.

Cabinet Approved Buying $ 4.3 billion World Bank Bonds
The Union Cabinet on 12 September gave the go-ahead to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to invest $4.3 billion in special bonds of the World Bank as it would help in securing additional funding from the multilateral lending agency for infrastructure development projects.Under the arrangement, the Reserve Bank of India will subscribe to special private placement of bonds by the IBRD, a lending arm of the World Bank.

Indian Economy To Grow At 5.3% In 2013-14
The Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (of India) on 13 September 2013 released the report “ Economic Outlook 2013-14 “ in New Delhi.The economic growth forecast of India for the current fiscal 2013-14 was lowered to 5.3 percent from 6.4 percent projected earlier. The PMEAC had in April 2013 projected 6.4 percent growth for Indian economy for current financial year.RBI too had earlier lowered its growth projection for this fiscal to 5.5 percent from 5.7 percent.
Highlights of the of Economic Outlook India are as following : -
* The PMEAC expects the agriculture sector to grow by 4.8 percent in the current fiscal up from 1.9 percent, while the industrial growth has been pegged at 2.7 percent as against 2.1 percent in 2012-13.
*  Services projected to grow at 6.6%in 2013-14 as against 7.1% in 2012-13.
*  Referring to the external sector, the advisory council expressed hope that the Current Account Deficit (CAD) in 2013-14 will come down to 70 billion US dollars or 3.8 percent of GDP, from 88.2 billion US dollars or 4.8 percent a year ago.
* The trade deficit ,would come down to around USD 185 billion in 2013-14, against an estimated USD 195.7 billion in 2012-13.
* Between 2010-11 and 2012-13, the combined impact of higher net oil and net gold imports on the CAD (Current Account Deficit) was almost 57 billion US dollars or 3 percent of GDP.
* The CAD may go even below $ 70 billion in 2013-14 if the recent trends in exports and imports are maintained through the year.
*  Net Capital flows are projected to fall to USD 61.4 billion in 2013-14 against an estimated USD 89.4 billion in 2012-13 putting pressure on the country’s forex reserves.

RBI Increases Repo Rate By 25 Basis Points
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 20 September increased the repo rate or the short term lending rate by 25 basis points to 7.5 per cent from 7.25 per cent with immediate effect. This means that the Repo rate has been increased by 0.25 percent.The cash reserve ratio (CRR) remained unchanged at 4 percent.The RBI previously raised the repo rate in October 2011 by 0.25 per cent to 8.5 per cent.

‘ India Entertainment & Media Outlook 2013 ‘ Report Released
According to the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) – PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) ‘s latest report titled, ‘India Entertainment & Media Outlook 2013 ‘ was released on 13 September in New Delhi.
Highlights of the ‘India Entertainment & Media Outlook 2013 ‘ Report :-
* India’s entertainment and media industry to clock over INR 224, 500 crore by 2017: CII-PwC study forecast CAGR of 18% over 2012-17
* Now the size of the Indian M&E sector increased from about 805 billion INR in 2011 to almost 965 billion INR in 2012 representing an year-on-year growth of 20%.
* The television and print sectors dominate the industry with about 40% and 22% contribution to industry revenues respectively in 2012.
* Internet access now commands about 18% share and films 12% of industry revenues.
*  Internet access now commands about 18% share and films 12% of industry revenues.
* The print sector revenues are expected to increase at over 9% CAGR to reach 331 billion INR in 2017 from 212 billion INR in 2012.
* Year-on-year sectors such as internet access (30%), internet advertising (29%), gaming (19%), and music (15%) are expected to continue on their high growth trajectory.
* The radio sector is also expected to receive a fillip with the successful conclusion of Phase III licence auctions and it is expected to grow at a robust CAGR of about 16%.


SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Indian Air Force inducts its Biggest Transport Aircraft ‘ C-17 Globemaster III ‘
Union Defence Minister AK Antony on 2 September formally inducted IAF’s biggest 70-tonne heavy-lift transport aircraft ‘ C-17 Globemaster III ‘ into service at the Hindon Air Base near Delhi.The C-17 Globemaster III aircraft has been procured from the US under a deal expected to be over Rs.20,000 crore.The C-17, with a capability to carry around 70 tonnes of load and around 150 fully geared troops, will replace the Russian Il-76 as the biggest aircraft in the IAF inventory till now.The IL-76 has the capability to carry loads upto around 40 tonnes.The IAF has placed orders with the US for ten C-17 aircraft under the deal signed in 2011 and three of them have already been delivered.The US Air Force is scheduled to complete the delivery of all the 10 planes by the end of 2014.

NASA Launches Spacecraft To Study Moon Atmosphere
NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) mission was successfully launched by a Minotaur 5 (spin stabilised delivery version) rocket on 7 September from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.LADEE is a robotic mission that will orbit the moon to gather detailed information about the lunar atmosphere, conditions near the surface, and environmental influences on lunar dust.

World’s Largest Volcano Discovered Under Pacific Ocean
The world’s largest volcano has been discovered on 5 September by University of Houston researchers on the floor of the Pacific Ocean. The volcano, 1,600 kilometres east of Japan and called the Tamu Massif, is the size of the British Isles.At 310,000 sq km (119,000 sq mi) Tamu Massif is comparable in size to Mars’ vast Olympus Mons volcano – the largest in the solar system..The volcano consists of a vast single rounded dome in the shape of a shield, which is believed to have been formed 144 million years ago when it last erupted.Its top lies about 6,500 feet below the ocean surface.

Japan Launches New Epsilon Rocket
Japan’s Epsilon-1 rocket — the first in a new generation of space rockets and the country’s first rocket in 12 years — lifted off on 14 September from a space center on Japan’s southern main island of Kyushu.The rocket, 24 meters in height and 90 tons in weight, placed the Spectroscopic Planet Observatory for Recognition of Interaction of Atmosphere, or SPRINT-A, into its orbit about an hour after the launch. The telescope will be used to observe planets including Venus, Mars and Jupiter from its Earth orbit.The Epsilon is the first new rocket design for Japan since the H2A was introduced in 2001. The H2A remains Japan’s primary rocket but officials hope the Epsilon will lead to improvements in the more costly H2A program. Japan hopes to be more competitive in the international rocket-launching business.

India Successfully Test Fired Nuclear – Capable ‘ Agni V ‘ Long Range Missile
India’s most deterrent nuclear capable ballistic missile, Agni-5 was successfully test fired on 15 September from Chandipur Test Range in Balasore district off Odisha coast.Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the Agni-5 can carry a single nuclear warhead of over 1000 kg and can strike with precision targets in China and Europe.The indigenously developed missile Agni-V is capable of striking a range of more than 5000 km. It is about 17 meter long and 2 metres wide with launch weight of around 50 tonnes.The first test flight of the Agni-5 on 19 April 2012 was a phenomenal success after which India joined the select club of the United States, Russia, France, Britain and China who have such capabilities. Agni-5 will give India the ability hit back or have second-strike capability even after a nuclear attack. The missile is India’s fastest-travelling object and the first one to cross the Equator when launched from India.In the Agni series, India at present has Agni-1 with 700 km range, Agni-2 with 2000 km range, Agni-3 and Agni-4 with 2500 km to more than 3500 range.

US Launches Unmanned Cygnus Cargo Ship To ISS
Orbital Sciences Corp launched the first flight of its unmanned Cygnus cargo ship on 18 September to the International Space Station, as NASA forges ahead with its plan to privatise US space missions.The Cygnus capsule, hitched to Orbital Science’s Antares rocket, blasted off from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility off Virginia’s eastern coast.Cygnus will ferry about 1,300 pounds (590 kilograms) of food, clothing and other cargo for the crew aboard the space station.

Iran Displays 30 Missiles With 2000 km Range
Iran paraded 30 missiles with a nominal range of 2,000 km on 22 September, the first time it had displayed so many with a stated capacity to hit Israeli targets.Iran displayed 12 Sejil and 18 Ghadr missiles at the annual parade marking the anniversary of the outbreak of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.The stated range of both missiles would put not only Israel but also US bases in the Gulf within reach.


PERSONS IN NEWS

A) APPOINTMENTS

Rakesh Sood Appointed as PM’s Special Envoy on Disarment and Non-Proliferation
On 1 September Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has appointed Rakesh Sood, India’s former Ambassador to Nepal, Afghanistan and France and the country’s first Ambassador in charge of Disarmament in Geneva, as his new Special Envoy for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation.Rakesh Sood is a recognised expert in his field and will be able to make a valuable contribution to the country’s foreign policy on security, non-proliferation and disarmament issues.

Deepak Sandhu Becomes The First Woman Chief Information Commissioner
On 5 September Deepak Sandhu became the first woman Chief Information Commissioner of the country.She was administered the oath of the office by the President of India, Pranab Mukherjee.Sandhu served in many key positions like Principal Director General (Media and Communications) in the Press Information Bureau, Director General of DD (News), Director General (News) All India Radio before taking over as Information Commissioner in 2009.

Kulkarni Becomes First Indian American State Judge In Northern California
On 6 September A leading Indian American lawyer, Sunil R Kulkarni, has become the first South Asian American state judge in Northern California with his appointment to Santa Clara County Superior Court.In 2010, Indian American Paul Singh Grewal was appointed a magistrate judge in US District Court for the Northern District of California.

Thomas Bach is new IOC president
Thomas Bach of Germany on 10 September has been elected as the new president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).Bach succeeds Jacques Rogge, the Belgian who is stepping down after 12 years.Bach is also the first gold medalist to become IOC president. He won gold in team fencing for West Germany in the 1976 Montreal Olympics.

Justice Prafulla Chandra Pant Appointed First Chief Justice of Meghalaya High Court
On 19 September Justice Prafulla Chandra Pant has been appointed as the first Chief Justice of the newly established Meghalaya High Court.Justice Pant will succeed Justice T Meena Kumari whose term as the Meghalaya Chief Justice was over two months ago.Justice Pant is a judge of the Uttarakhand High Court.Born in Pithoragarh district of then undivided Uttar Pradesh, he joined the UP Judicial Service in 1976 and held different posts. After the creation of Uttarakhand, he was the first Secretary, Judicial, of the state.

Srinivasan Re-Elected As BCCI President For The Third Term
Narayanaswamy Srinivasan has been re-elected as the President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for a third term at its 84th annual general meeting (AGM) held at Chennai on 29 September. He was unanimously re-elected as the president of BCCI for the term of 2013-14.

Ranjib Biswal Appointed as new IPL chairman
Former national selector Ranjib Biswal on 29 September has been appointed as chairman of the Indian Premier League (IPL) during the Annual General Meeting of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) at Chennai.Prior to this appointment Ranjib Biswal was manager of the Indian Cricket team during the ICC World Cup 2011 and the ICC Champions Trophy 2013. He is also the head of Orissa Cricket Association.

B)RESIGNS
Rajasthan Minister Babulal Nagar Resigned
Minister of State for Food and Civil Supplies Babulal Nagar on 19 September resigned from the Rajasthan cabinet after being accused of raping a woman.

C)DEATHS
Audio Pioneer Ray Dolby of famed Sound System Died
Ray Dolby, the engineer who pioneered the noise reduction in audio recordings that produced clearer sound for music and cinema, died on 12 September in San Francisco.He was the founder of Dolby Laboratories.His works in noise reduction and surround sound has been appreciated across the world and have won recognitions too.Dolby moved his company to San Francisco in 1976 and in 1989 was awarded an Oscar for his contributions to cinema, which he shared with Dolby executive Ioan Allen.Dolby also was given music’s Grammy award 1995 and television’s Emmys in 1989 and 2005.

World’s Oldest Man Salustiano Sanchez-Blazquez Died
The world’s oldest man, a former musician and coal miner, Salustiano Sanchez-Blazquez has died at the age of 112 in Grand Island, New York on 13 September.Salustiano Sanchez-Blazquez was officially certified by Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest man.He was born on 8 June 1901 in Spain.

D)VISITORS

Liberia President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Visited India
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of the Republic of Liberia, visited India from 9 – 13 September 2013 .During this visit,President Sirleaf met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in NewDelhi and held delegation level discussions on bilateral, regional and international issues.Both sides noted that there still remained considerable potential for cooperation and agreed to enhance the partnership between the two countries in all areas of mutual interest.On 12 September 2013, the Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development for the year 2012 was conferred upon President Sirleaf.

E)MISCELLANEOUS

Malala Yousafzai  Inaugurates Europe’s Largest Library In UK
Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani schoolgirl shot in the head in a failed assassination attempt by the Taliban, on 3 September inaugurated Europe’s biggest public library in her newly adopted home of Birmingham in UK.The library of Brimingham was built with cost of 189-million pound ,while it has more than 200 public access computers,theatres ,an exhibition gallery and music rooms.

Zardari Becomes First Pakistani President To Serve Full Term
Pakistan’s president stepped down on 8 September 2013, after finishing his five-year term .Asif Ali Zardari is the first president in the history of Pakistani democracy to be democratically elected, serve his full term, and then step down.He served as the 11th President of Pakistan from 2008 to 2013.

Diana Became First Woman to Swim Across Florida Straits without Shark Cage
Diana Nyad, 64-year old American long-distance swimmer became the first person to cross Florida Straits from Cuba without any shark cage on 2 September 2013. This was her fifth attempt to cross the 110-mile (177-km) distance.Diana Nyad completed the 110-mile or 177-km distance.

Nina Davuluri Wins ‘ Miss America ‘ 2014 Title
Nina Davuluri, Miss New York, was crowned the new Miss America on 15 September in Atlantic City, New Jersey.Miss New York, Nina Davuluri, became the first contestant of Indian heritage and the second consecutive contestant from New York to win the Miss America pageant.She succeeds another Miss New York, Mallory Hagan, whose tenure was cut short when the pageant moved back to Atlantic City after a six-year stint in Las Vegas, where winners were chosen in January.Nina Davuluri from Syracuse, sashayed off with the tiara and the $50,000 scholarship cash.She is the first Miss America winner of Indian descent.

Megan Young Crowned Miss World 2013
Megan Young of Philippines was crowned Miss World 2013 at the Bali Nasa Dua Convention Center in Bali, Indonesia on 28 September.Miss France, Marine Lorphelin took second place, while Miss Ghana, Carranzar Naa Okailey Shooter ,came in third. Miss India World Navneet Kaur Dhillon finished among the top 20 finalists but couldn’t reach final ten. She won the title of Miss Multimedia.


PLACES  IN  NEWS

China Inaugurated World’s Highest Daocheng Yading Civilian Airport
China has opened the world’s highest civilian airport named ” Daocheng Yading” on 16 September in a restive and remote Tibetan region of southwestern Sichuan province.The Daocheng Yading airport in Ganzi prefecture in southwestern China is the world’s highest civilian airport.The region is a gateway to Tibet.Daocheng airport in Garzi, a heavily ethnic Tibetan part of Sichuan, is 4411 metres above sea level, and overtakes Qamdo airport in Tibet, which sits at 4334 metres above sea level, for the title of world’s highest.

Strong Earthquake Hits Pakistan
A major 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit southwestern Pakistan on 24 September, killed more than 350 people and damaged several houses near the epicentre in a remote part of Balochistan province. The quake, with its epicentre 69 km from Awaran, was originally measured at 7.4 on the Richter Scale by the US Geological Survey which later it revised to 7.8. Pakistan’s meteorological office gave the magnitude as 7.7.The 7.6 magnitude quake in 2005 killed at least 73,000 people and left several million homeless in one of the worst natural disasters to hit Pakistan.


ABBREVIATIONS

NCRB – National Crime Records Bureau

AISHE – All India Survey on Higher Education

MNIC -  Multi-purpose National Identity Card

IBRD -  International Bank for Reconstruction and Development

ICAO – International Civil Aviation Organisation

HDI -  Human Development Index

ESMA – Essential Services Maintenance Act

DRDO – Defence Research and Development Organisation

CTBT – Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty


BOOKS IN NEWS

” India and Malaysia : Interwined Strands” Book Released By Vice President of India
The Vice President of India M. Hamid Ansari on 9 September released a book entitled ” India and Malaysia: Intertwined Strands ” at New Delhi . The book is authored by former Diplomat Veena Sikri. The book is written for the Institute of South East Asian Studies (ISEAS), Singapore. It is a comprehensive book on a very useful subject of relationship between India and Malaysia.


COMMITTEES

Nachiket Mor Committee To Frame Vision For Financial Inclusion
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 23 September announced a 13-member committee, including former Citibank CEO Vikram Pandit and Axis Bank chief Shikha Sharma, to frame a clear and detailed vision for financial inclusion/deepening across the country.The Committee is headed by Nachiket Mor, Member on the RBI’s Central Board of Directors. The committee, which will submit its final report by December 31.Committee is to lay down a set of design principles that will guide the development of institutional frameworks and regulation for achieving financial inclusion and financial deepening in India.


IMPORTANT DAYS AND DATES

International Day of Peace Observed on 21 September
International Day of Peace observed on 21 September 2013 across the world to recognise the efforts of those who have worked hard to end conflict and promote peace. The International Day of Peace is also a day of ceasefire.The theme for the year 2013 is Education for Peace.Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21 September. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples.The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by resolution 36/67 of the United Nations General Assembly to coincide with its opening session, which was held annually on the third Tuesday of September.

World Rabies Day Observed on 28 September
World Rabies Day observed on 28 September 2013 across the world to raise awareness about the impact of rabies disease and to deliver the message that rabies is preventable.The theme for the year 2013 is Rabies: Understand it to defeat it.World Rabies Day is an initiative of Global Alliance for Rabies Control and the day started it in 2007 to create a global opportunity for people to focus on rabies prevention.The World Rabies Day is observed each year on 28 September- on the death anniversary of Louis Pasteur who developed the first efficacious rabies vaccine with his colleagues.

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