12 August 2017 Current Affairs

Canara Bank unveils two new Digital Services

Canara Bank unveiled two new digital services for online payments. Bharat QR (Quick Response) is for payment settlement at merchant locations and Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) is an integrated bill payment system for net banking customers. The first service is a mobile application, which enables a merchant to accept payments as settlement for sale of goods or services. The second product (BBPS), an initiative of the RBI offers bill payment services to the bank’s net banking customers with network of agents.

Govt launches Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana

The Government of India has decided to launch a new sub-scheme named “Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana (AGEY)”, a sub-scheme under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY_NRLM). AGEY aims to provide an alternative source of livelihood to members of Self Help Groups (SHGs) by facilitating them to operate public transport services in backward rural areas. This will help to provide safe, affordable and community monitored rural transport services to connect remote villages with key services and amenities. AGEY will be initially implemented in 250 Blocks in the country on pilot basis.

International Youth Day observed globally

The international Youth Day was observed across the world on 12 August 2017 with the theme ‘Youth Building Peace’. This year, the Day is aimed at celebrating young people’s contributions in preventing conflicts and bringing about transformations along with inclusion, social justice and sustainable peace. The international Youth Day was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on 17 December 1999 through its resolution 54/120.

Poet, writer Vijay Nambisan passes away at 54

Noted Poet and writer Vijay Nambisan, who became the first All India Poetry Champion in 1988, passed away. He co-authored Gemini, a poetry book, with Jeet Thayil and Dom Moraes. He championed the ethical use of language and made an appeal to readers, writers and enthusiasts of literature in his book ‘Language as an Ethic’. He was 54 years old.

15th BIMSTEC ministerial meeting in Kathmandu

The 15th Ministerial Meeting of Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) concluded at Kathmandu, Nepal. The members agreed to intensify their collaborative efforts to realize the aims and purposes of the group embodied therein and pledged to make BIMSTEC stronger, more effective and result oriented. They agreed to emphasize the need for greater cooperation in trade and investment in order to deepen regional integration in the Bay of Bengal region.

Govt reconstitutes Existing CBFC for three years

The Centre has appointed lyricist Prasoon Joshi as Chairman of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) for a period of three years. Mr Joshi has replaced former Chairman Pahlaj Nihalani. Government has also reconstituted the existing CBFC with immediate effect for a period of three years. There are 12 members in the new board, which include Ms. Gautami Tadimalla, Shri Narendra Kohli, Shri Naresh Chandra Lal, Shri Neil Herbert Nongkynrih, Shri Vivek Agnihotri, Shri Waman Kendre, Ms. Vidya Balan, Shri T.S. Nagabharana, Shri Ramesh Patange, Ms. Vani Tripati Tikoo, Ms. Jeevitha Rajasekhar, Shri Mihir Bhuta

Ruth Pfau, Pakistan’s ‘Mother Teresa’ dies aged 87

Ruth Pfau, a German nun who devoted her life to combatting leprosy in Pakistan, has died at the age of 87. Pfau, who was known locally as Pakistan’s Mother Teresa, came to the southern port city of Karachi in 1960 and spent half a century taking care of some of the country’s sickest and poorest people. Dr. Pfau first visited Pakistan in 1960 and was so touched by the plight of leprosy victims that she decided to stay forever in the country to treat them. The nun founded the Marie Adelaide Leprosy Centre in Karachi in 1962 and later set up its branches in all provinces of Pakistan, including Gilgit-Baltistan, and treated over 50,000 families. Due to her tireless efforts, the World Health Organisation in 1996 declared Pakistan one of the first countries in Asia to be free of leprosy. She was born in 1929 in Germany and lived through the horrors of the World War II.

Milkha Singh appointed WHO’s ambassador for physical activity

Sprint legend Milkha Singh has been appointed as the World Health Organisation’s goodwill ambassador for physical activity in South-East Asia Region (SEAR). As WHO goodwill ambassador, Singh, also known as ‘the Flying Sikh’, will promote WHO SEAR’s non-communicable diseases (NCDs) prevention and control action plan which seeks to reduce the level of insufficient physical activity by 10 per cent and NCDs by 25 per cent by 2025.

World’s oldest man, Holocaust survivor, dies aged 113

Israeli Holocaust survivor Yisrael Kristal, certified by Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest man, died aged 113. Kristal, originally from Zarnow, Poland, was born on September 15, 1903, three months before the Wright brothers’ first successful powered airplane flight. Guinness World Records recognised him as the world’s oldest man in March 2016.

Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta wins second term

President Uhuru Kenyatta won re-election in Kenya defeating veteran opposition leader and longtime rival Raila Odinga in a tense contest. Election Commission Head Wafula Chebukati announced in Nairobi that Kenyatta got 54.27 per cent votes beating his rival Raifa Odinga who got 44.74 per cent of votes. The opposition rejected the results even before they were declared, calling the process a charade.

Vinay Dube appointed Jet Airways CEO

Jet Airways India Ltd named Vinay Dube as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Jet Airways has been without a full-time CEO since Cramer Ball quit in February 2016. Mr. Dube is currently senior vice president, Asia Pacific with Delta Air Lines Inc., one of the world’s largest and most profitable airlines. Dube has served in various roles at Delta Airlines, Sabre Inc and American Airlines in the USA, Europe and Asia.

For Technical Assistance SEBI ties up with Iran Counterpart

Markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) entered into a pact with its counterpart Securities & Exchange Organization (SEO) from Iran to promote technical assistance and facilitate cross-border co-operation in the area of securities regulations. It will facilitate mutual assistance, contribute towards efficient performance of the supervisory functions, and enable effective enforcement of laws and regulations governing the securities markets. The MoU was signed by SEBI chief Ajay Tyagi and SEO Iran chairman Shapour Mohammadi. SEBI has signed nearly two dozen bilateral MoUs with the regulators of various jurisdictions. The markets regulator is also a signatory to the multilateral MoU of International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO).

Telangana Govt launches ‘Smart Streets Lab’ for road safety

The government of Telangana in association with the World Resources Institute (WRI) India – Ross Centre and the Indian School of Business (ISB) launched the ‘Smart Streets Lab’ program. The Lab will pilot innovative road-safety and women safety solutions and leverage new developments in technology and IT to transform the streets of Hyderabad. Through the ‘Smart Streets Lab’, the state government aims to utilize technological interventions from outside and integrate them with its various departments.

Odisha Govt & FB launches ‘SheMeansBusiness’

Odisha government and social networking giant Facebook has launched ‘SheMeansBusiness’ programme to train women entrepreneurs in the state. It was launched in partnership between Odisha’s MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) department and Project Mission Shakti. Under this initiative, 25,000 women entrepreneurs and self-help group (SHG) members from the state will be given training on digital marketing skills within by the end of 2018. Facebook will monitor the growth of MSMEs in Odisha after imparting training to them in next one year.

Dilip Asbe appointed as Acting Chief Executive of NPCI

National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has appointed Dilip Asbe to act as its chief executive officer in the wake of the retirement of A. P. Hota, its founding managing director. Hota who had served as the MD of NPCI since its inception retired recently. Asbe who currently serves as the organisations’ chief operating officer will continue in the same designation, but will also act as the chief executive of NPCI.

Govt launches Gaj Yatra campaign to protect Elephants

The Union Ministry of Environment and Forest has launche a nationwide campaign Gaj Yatra to protect elephants. It was launched on the occasion of World Elephant Day on 12 August 2017. The Ministry also released the All India Census 2017 Report on elephants and Agreed Points of Action on Trans-Boundary Conservation of Elephants by India and Bangladesh.The campaign is planned to cover 12 elephant range states across the country. It is 15 months campaign that will be led by the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI). The ‘Gaju’, mascot, which was released by the Ministry in 2012, will be helm of the campaign.

Indian Bank brings 2-tier Interest Rate for Savings Accounts

PSU lender Indian Bank has introduced two tier interest rate structure for saving bank accounts and will offer interest rate of 4 per cent per annum on savings account with incremental balance of over Rs 50 lakh and 3.50 per cent per annum for deposit up to Rs 50 lakh. The new interest rate will be effective from August 16, 2017. Recently, the country’s largest lender State Bank of India had slashed interest rate on savings account deposits by 50 basis points to 3.5 per on balance of Rs 1 crore and below.

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