Current Affairs 2017 (June)

Current Affairs 2017 (June)

 Current Affairs 2017 (June)

NATIONAL

 

  1. Samsung India has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) for setting up two new Samsung Technical Schools in Bengaluru and Jamshedpur as well as to renew the partnership for 10 existing schools being run across the country.

  2. Government will retrofit 10 lakh conventional street lights with LED lights in Gram Panchayats of 7 districts in Andhra Pradesh. The project will be carried out by the Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) functioning under the Ministry of Power. This project will be the first rural LED street lighting project under the Government of India’s Street Lighting National Project (SLNP). 

  3. The Ministry of Rural Development has selected Vizianagaram as one among the 17 districts for MGNREGA annual award. The award will be given to Vizianagaram for its effective implementation of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act during the time period 2015-16. The district programme coordinator and District Collector would be presented the award at the Mahatma Gandhi NREGA Sammelan to be held in New Delhi.

  4. The National Board of Wildlife has approved Rutland Island in South Andaman to be the site for the country’s long-range missile test facility. DRDO has been seeking the approval for the test facility since 2012. Taking into account the strategic importance of the project for country’s defence, the Standing Committee of the National Board of Wildlife has approved the project.

  5. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has announced that it is working on a forecasting system that will give a 15-day warnings on the likelihood of a malaria or chikungunya outbreak across different regions of the country.

  6. Health Secretary C K Mishra has inaugurated the ‘Vatsalya – Maatri Amrit Kosh’, a National Human Milk Bank and Lactation Counselling Centre at the Lady Hardinge Medical College (LHMC) in New Delhi. This centre would be the largest public sector human milk bank and lactation counselling centre available in North India.

  7. India has signed an agreement with Sri Lanka to provide USD 318 million as line of credit for developing Sri Lanka’s railway sector. The agreement was signed between Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Finance and Mass media, and Managing Director of India’s Export Import Bank in Colombo.

  8. State-run oil marketing companies such as Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL) and Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) will revise the prices of petrol and diesel daily from June 16 throughout the country. The move is aimed at countering the practice of undercutting by private retailers as well as to bring India at par with the US oil market. Private retailers such as RIL and Essar are also expected to switch to the new pricing mechanism.

  9. Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare J P Nadda has been conferred the WHO Director-General’s Special Recognition Award for global tobacco control. The award was presented to him by Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia at the ‘National Consultation on Accelerating Implementation of WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) for achievement of SDGs’.

  10. The Supreme Court has upheld the government’s decision and ruled that it would be mandatory for all Aadhaar holders to link it with the permanent account number (PAN) for filing of income tax returns. However, in a partial setback to the government, the apex court refused to make it compulsory for those people who do not possess an Aadhaar card or have not yet applied for one. The Court stayed the retrospective invalidation of PAN for non-compliance till a Constitutional Bench decides on the privacy question pending before it. As a result, a person who do not possess Aadhaar card will not face criminal consequences for not linking Aadhaar card with PAN card.

  11. The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee has launched a mobile Application ‘Selfie with Daughter’ at Rashtrapati Bhavan. The App is aimed at raising awareness among people about female foeticide and sex selection. The President has urged the people to take selfies with their daughters to make the campaign a huge success. The app is expected to create awareness and help in dealing with the problems arising out of gender imbalance. The President has termed the App as an innovative concept and as an act of gentle persuasion

  12. The Ministry of Law and Justice has launched the ‘Tele-Law’ initiative in collaboration with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology to provide legal aid services to the marginalized communities and citizens living in rural areas through the Common Service Centres (CSC) at the panchayat level, spread across the country.

  13. NITI Aayog has launched SATH-‘Sustainable Action for Transforming Human capital’ with the State Governments for furthering the agenda of cooperative federalism. 

  14. Ministry of Home Affairs has constituted an expert committee to examine the rules which allow free movement of people near Indo-Myanmar border. Indian and Myanmarese citizens are permitted free movement within 16 km of the international border, but these rules are widely exploited by militants for smuggling arms, drugs, and fake Indian currency.

  15. Project Jal Sanchay’, a water conservation model which is successfully adopted in Nalanda district of south-central Bihar, has been chosen for the national award for excellence in the Mahatma Gandhi national rural employment guarantee programme (MGNREGP) by the Ministry of Rural Development. The award will be conferred on June 19 at a function held at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi.

  16. According to a recently released CRY Report on child labour, more than 8 lakh children between the age group of 5 and 6 years in India are engaged in child labour. Child Rights and You (CRY) is an NGO working towards the upliftment of underprivileged children. The organization got established in 1979 by Rippan Kapur.

  17. The Public Sector Oil Marketing Companies, Indian Oil, Bharat Petroleum and Hindustan Petroleum has have signed the joint venture agreement to jointly set up the world’s largest refinery and petrochemical complex in Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra.

  18. The Union cabinet has approved the Interest Subvention Scheme (ISS) for farmers for the year 2017-18. The Government has allocated Rs. 20,339 crore for this scheme.

  19. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has inaugurated Know India Programme (KIP) for NRI and PIO youth with a view to provide them with an exposure to the country of their origin so that they can understand India better and more closely. External Affairs Minister has also launched a portal for the Know India Programme (KIP).

  20. The government has made Aadhaar mandatory for opening bank accounts as well as for carrying out financial transactions above of Rs 50,000. In addition, the government has asked all the existing account holders to link Aadhaar numbers to their bank accounts by December 31, 2017. Failure to comply with this guideline will make the account invalid.

  21. Minister of State for Power, Coal, New and Renewable Energy and Mines has launched the Energy Conservation Building Code 2017 (ECBC 2017). This updated version of the Code prescribes the energy performance standards for new commercial buildings to be constructed across India.

  22. Minister for Science & Technology Dr. Harshvardhan has launched a Mobile App “Celebrating Yoga”. The Mobile App has been developed by Department of Science & Technology, Ministry of Science & Technology on the occasion of International  Yoga Day 2017. The aim of the app is to popularise Yoga and encourage people to practice yoga for a scientifically healthy living.

  23. Under the Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin (SBM-G), rural Uttarakhand and rural Haryana have been declared as the 4th and 5th Open Defecation Free (ODF) States of India. Already, Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh and Kerala, have been declared ODF.

  24. Concerned over the complaints received from the public over the premium trains of Indian Railways like Rajdhani and Shatabdi Express, Railways have decided to launch “Operation Swarn (‘gold’)“. The operation is aimed at improving the services in these premium trains. The Railways have decided to launch this operation after it received complaints from passengers regarding the sanitation, food quality and delay in train arrivals etc.

  25. Department of Science and Technology has launched  VAJRA (Visiting Advanced Joint Research) Faculty scheme that enables NRIs and overseas scientific community to participate and contribute to research and development in India. on 8th January 2017, during the 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention, Prime Minister had announced that a new scheme called VAJRA (Visiting Advanced Joint Research) Faculty scheme would be launched by the Department of Science and Technology.

  26. Union Minister for Urban Development and Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation, M. Venkaiah Naidu has announced a new batch of 30 smart cities under Smart City Mission, which was launched on June 25, 2015. 

  27. Union Minister of State for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy and Mines Piyush Goyal has launched Weather Portal for Power Sector & Web Portal ‘MERIT’ (Merit Order Despatch of Electricity for Rejuvenation of Income and Transparency).

  28. NITI-Aayog has chosen the CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) in Hyderabad for hosting the ₹10-crore Atal Incubation Centre for biotechnology start-ups.

  29. The HRD ministry has constituted a new nine-member panel headed by space scientist K Kasturirangan to frame a new National Education Policy (NEP). The other members of the panel include chosen experts and educationists from wide-ranging backgrounds. The panel includes former IAS officer K.J. Alphonse Kanamthanam, who was instrumental in making Kerala’s Kottayam and Ernakulam districts achieve 100% literacy.

  30. Satellite-based chip systems developed by ISRO will be used to alert road users at unmanned level crossings about approaching trains. These chips will also help the railways in tracking train movement on a real-time basis. Initially, on a pilot basis the ISRO-developed integrated circuit (IC) chips will be installed in the Mumbai and Guwahati Rajdhani trains. Hooters will be installed at 20 unmanned level crossings on Rajdhani routes for Guwahati and Mumbai. The system will warn the road users by hooters once a train approaches an unmanned level. The hooters will get activated when the train is present at a distance of about 500 metres from the level crossing, warning both road users as well as the train driver near the crossing. The sound of the hooters will become louder as the level crossing nears, and finally it will become silent after the passage of the train. In a phased manner, more trains would be equipped with the ISRO-developed integrated circuit (IC) chips. The satellite based system will also be used for tracking trains about their movement on real time basis. It will be useful to passengers as at present the movement of trains are tracked manually.

  31. The World Bank has cleared a USD 250-million loan to aid the Skill India mission. The loan amount would be used for making Indian youth more employable through reskilling.

  32. The Election Commission of India has joined hands with Facebook to launch nationwide voter registration reminder aimed at reminding eligible Indian voters to register themselves on the electoral rolls.

  33. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has come out with draft regulations for organic food products to ensure the authenticity of organic foods.

  34. NALSA has launched a web application for free Legal Services to Prisoners at the conference held at Indian Law Institute, New Delhi. The Conference saw the participation of Member Secretaries and administrative officers of 18 State Legal Services Authorities. The Legal Services Management System has been developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC).

  35. The US has issued new criteria for visa applicants from six Muslim countries. The US Supreme Court has partially restored President Trump’s executive order that banned travel of people from the six Muslim-majority countries. President’s executive order was widely criticised as a ban on Muslims. Salient Facts.

  36. The Asian Development Bank has committed USD 10 billion to support infrastructure building and to cater to the immediate development needs of less-developed States in India. This has been stated by ADB President Takehiko Nakao during his 3-day visit to India.

INTERNATIONAL

  1. India and Russia have inked 5 pacts after wide-ranging talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin during the visit of Prime Minister Modi to Russia.

  2. india and Pakistan’s admission to the China-backed Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) will be formalised at the SCO’s summit to be held in Astana, Kazakhstan. The Astana Summit will be held on 8-9 June. The summit will complete the admission procedures of these two countries.

  3. India has been ranked 137th in the Global Peace Index 2017, which ranks 163 independent states and territories according to their level of peacefulness. In Last year’s index, India was ranked 141st. This is the eleventh edition of the Global Peace Index (GPI). The index is compiled every year by the Sydney-based think tank Institute for Economics and Peace.

  4. President Donald Trump has announced that the United States is set to withdraw from the historic 2015 Paris Accord as the accord was hurting his country and economy very badly. However, he has said that he is open for a “new transaction” on terms that are fair to the US.

  5. Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, Yemen, Libya and UAE have suspended their diplomatic ties with Qatar. All the six countries have announced that they would withdraw their diplomatic staff from Qatar and eject Qatar’s diplomats from their territories. They have also planned to cut air and sea traffic.

  6. The UN security council has unanimously passed a resolution expanding targeted sanctions against North Korea after the latter launched its ninth ballistic missile test of the year. This is the first such resolution which is agreed upon by the United States and China since the US President Donald Trump took office.

  7. her Bahadur Deuba,70, has been elected as Nepal’s Prime Minister for the fourth time. He was the only candidate who contested in the election as the main opposition party UML decided to end the obstruction of parliament and did not register its candidates for the election. Deuba managed to secure 388 votes in the 593 strong Parliament in order to prove his majority.

  8. Nepal has struck a major deal with China Gezhouba Group Corporation (CGGC) for developing a 1,200 MW Budhigandaki Hydroelectric Project, which will be the biggest hydro project in Nepal having  the potential to resolve its perennial power crisis. The MoU was signed in the presence of outgoing Prime Minister of Nepal Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ and Chinese Ambassador to Nepal Yu Hong.

  9. The Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) grouping has established a one million dollar fund for boosting media cooperation in the five-nation grouping. During the inaugural session of the BRICS Media Forum  held in Beijing, Xinhua News Agency and executive president of the Forum had announced that the Xinhua news agency will invest  one million U.S. dollars for bolstering BRICS media.

  10. Sachin Tendulkar will join other global celebrities like Dravid, Beckham, Novak Djokovic, Academy Award winning American actor Mahershala Ali, British Formula One racing driver Lewis Hamilton and Australian actor Hugh Jackman for UNICEF’s ‘Super Dads’ campaign that highlights the critical role played by fathers in children’s early development.

  11. India and the UN Office for South-South Cooperation have launched a partnership fund to promote sustainable development projects across the developing world. The India-UN Development Partnership Fund was launched on occasion of the World Oceans Day at a special ceremony held at the Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

  12. With an aim to curb antibiotic resistance, the World Health Organization (WHO) has revised the protocol for antibiotics. This revision is the biggest such revision of the antibiotics section in the 40-year history of the essential medicines list (EML).

  13. India has moved the World Trade Organisation (WTO) against the US as it has not yet complied with the rulings of the WTO pertaining to imposition of high import duty on certain Indian steel products.

  14. Government has awarded a Rs 1,600-crore contract for constructing 109-km road connecting Paletwa river terminal to Zorinpui in Mizoram border as a part of the $484-million Kaladan multi-modal transport (KMTT) projects in Myanmar which will offer connectivity to Mizoram.

  15. The Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings 2018 has been released. In the list, three Indian universities have featured among the top 200 universities.

  16. EU and France will give a grant of 3.5 million euros to three Indian cities- Nagpur, Kochi and Ahmedabad as part of the EU’s commitment under the Paris Climate agreement to curb emissions and promote sustainability in these cities.

  17. India has ratified two key global conventions for combating child labour as a step towards creating full respect for fundamental rights at work.

  18. Panama has established formal diplomatic ties with China and broke all of its relationship with Taiwan in a move that is seen as a victory for China in its drive to isolate Taiwan from the rest of the world. China claims Taiwan as its own territory.

  19. According to the ‘One Family at a Time’ study conducted by the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Indians working across the world had sent home USD 62.7 billion in 2016 making India the top remittance-receiving country surpassing China.

  20. India and South Korea has signed an agreement for $10 billion assistance for infrastructure development projects in India, including smart cities. It includes $9 billion in concessional credit and $1 billion in Official development assistance (ODA). Part of this fund will be utilised towards Smart City projects in India. With this agreement, South Korea has become one of the first non-G-7 countries to become an ODA contributor in India.

  21. In the Global Innovation Index 2017, co-authored by Cornell University, INSEAD and World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), India has moved up 6 places to reach 60th place among 130 countries emerging as the top-ranked economy in Central and South Asia. This is the 10th edition of the Global Innovation Index 2017 (GII).

  22. The United Nations General Assembly has approved the establishment of a new United Nations office of counter-terrorism to help Member States implement UN’s global counter-terrorism strategy.

  23. India and Afghanistan are set to operationalize their first air-freight corridor in the coming days. The first flight will be operated by Ariana Afghan Airlines, which is the Afghanistan’s national carrier. The flight which will initially operate once or twice in a month will carry commodities to and from Delhi. Depending upon the supply needs, the frequency of the flight will be increased.

  24. India has won its re-election to the UN’s principal organ on economic, social and environmental issues for another three-year term. India was one among the 18 nations to win election to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

  25. India has become the 71st nation to join the United Nations TIR (Transports Internationaux Routiers) Convention. India’s decision to join the convention is part of its multi-modal transport strategy that aims at integrating Indian economy with global and regional production networks through better connectivity. In March 2017, Union Cabinet had approved India’s accession to the Customs Convention on International Transport of Goods under TIR Convention. The UN has confirmed that the TIR Convention will enter into force in India in 6 months.

  26. The World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought is observed every year on June 17 to promote public awareness to combat desertification.

  27. China has unveiled world’s first train that runs on a virtual track making use of sensor technology instead of metal rails.

  28. India and Portugal have signed a protocol of cooperation in the field of archives. The agreement has been signed between the National Archives of India and the Ministry of Culture of the Portuguese Republic in Lisbon, Portugal.

  29. Saudi Arabia’s king has appointed his son Mohammed bin Salman as crown prince and heir to the throne replacing his nephew, Mohammed bin Nayef. This also means that Prince Mohammed bin Salman will become the kingdom’s deputy prime minister while continuing as defence minister.

  30. June 21st is annually celebrated as International Yoga Day since the year 2015. This year, the 3rd International Day of Yoga is being observed.

  31. The UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has appointed Russian diplomat Vladimir Voronkov to head the newly established UN Counter-Terrorism Centre (UNCCT), despite growing tensions between the US and Russia.

  32. This year, India and Russia are celebrating 70 years of establishment of diplomatic relations between them. Joint cooperation in science and technology was one of the important pillars of the bilateral relationship between both the countries. Also, India’s Department of Science & Technology, New Delhi and Russian Foundation for Basic Research, Moscow are celebrating their 10th year of their partnership.

  33. According to the World population Prospectus: The Revision released by the United Nations, India with 1.3 billion inhabitants would surpass China’s population of 1.4 billion by 2024, to become the World’s populous country.

  34. China has launched a research project aimed at compiling historical data obtained during earlier expeditions conducted by its teams to the disputed South China Sea since the late 1950s.

  35. India and Portugal have signed 11 pacts after in-depth talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Portuguese counterpart Antonio Costa in areas like counter-terrorism, space and climate studies. This is the first-ever bilateral visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Portugal. India thanked Portugal for its support for India’s permanent membership of UNSC, and of Multilateral Export Control Regime.

  36. India and Russia have finalized a roadmap to further boost bilateral defence cooperation during the 17th India-Russia intergovernmental commission on military-technical cooperation held at Moscow. The meeting was co-chaired by defence minister Arun Jaitley and his Russian counterpart General Shoygu. The agenda for the discussion ranged from joint development of futuristic weapon systems to a major upgrade of military-to-military ties.

  37. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has become the first foreign leader to have a White House dinner after the US President Donald Trump assumed power.

  38. In Romania, President Klaus Iohannis has appointed outgoing economy minister Mihai Tudose as Prime Minister and thus paved the way for the formation of a new leftist Social-Democrat-led government in that country. According to the President of Romania, the decision has been taken keeping in mind the political crisis that risked damaging the country’s record economic recovery.

  39. The European Union’s competition watchdog has fined Google a record 2.42 billion euro for breaching the anti-trust rules by illegally favouring its shopping service. The European Commission regulates EU competition rules.

  40. The United States is set to declare China as one among the world’s worst offenders on human trafficking in its annual Trafficking in Persons Report. The report will be unveiled by the Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to the US Congress.

  41. India and the Netherlands have signed three MOUs after the meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Dutch counterpart Mark Rutte in Hague the Netherlands. Prime Minister’s visit to the Netherlands has come at a time when both the countries are celebrating 70 years of diplomatic relations.

  42. The world’s first ATM (automated teller machine) celebrates its 50th anniversary. In the past five decades, ATM machines have heralded a transformation in the way people obtained and used cash.

  43. Petya Ransomware is part of a new wave of cyber-attacks and has infected computer servers across the world.

  44. China has launched its most powerful naval destroyer, the Type 055, at the Shanghai port. The naval destroyer is one among the largest warships in the world.

  45. Germany has legalised same-sex marriage in line with a host of other European countries. German lawmakers had voted 393 for- and 226 against legalising same-sex marriage.

  46. India has contributed $ 100,000 to the UN Trust Fund for International Cooperation in Tax Matters (the UN Tax Fund). The fund is aimed at helping the developing countries to actively participate in the discussion of tax issues. This was announced by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs Office for Financing, Development Office. India has also earned the distinction of becoming the first country to make a voluntary contribution to the UN tax fund.

BANKING AND FINANCE

  1. As per the data released by the Ministry of Statistics, India registered 7.1% growth in the financial year 2016-17, which is slower than the 8% registered in 2015-16. In the fourth quarter of 2016-17, India registered a growth of GDP growth of 6.1% compared with China’s 6.9% in the same period. Hence, it has lost its fastest-growing major economy tag in the fourth quarter of 2016-17. 

  2. Market Regulator SEBI has formed a Committee on Corporate Governance under the chairmanship of Uday Kotak, the executive vice chairman and managing director of Kotak Mahindra Bank. The move is aimed at improving the standards of corporate governance of listed companies. 

  3. Bharti Airtel has stated that it has got approvals from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) for the proposed scheme of merger with Telenor (India) Communications Private Ltd. Bharti Airtel now has filed the joint company application before the New Delhi Bench of the National Company Law Tribunal for approval. Bharti Airtel had announced its proposed merger with Telenor South Asia Investments Pte Ltd in February.

  4. The 2017 Global Retail Development Index (GRDI) titled ‘The Age of Focus‘ has placed India at the top position among 30 developing countries on ease of doing business in the retail sector. This is the 16th edition of the Global Retail Development Index (GRDI).

  5. The World Bank’s Global Economic Prospects (GEP) has projected a growth rate of 7.2% for India in the financial year 2017 as against 6.8% growth in 2016. Also, the bank in its report expects India’s growth rate to remain at 7.5% in 2018 and 7.7% in 2019.

  6. The finance Ministry has asked all those ministries tasked with clearing foreign direct investment proposals in the 12 sectors that require government’s nod to take a decision on such proposals within 60 days. Last month, the Cabinet abolished the Foreign Investment and Promotion Board (FIPB), which was the authority for clearing foreign direct investment (FDI) proposals for a period of 25 years. A timeline of 4 weeks has been fixed for the transfer of all pending applications with the FIPB to the respective administrative ministries.

  7. Vijaya Bank has stated that it plans to develop as many as 100 digital villages in various States across the country as part of its initiative to promote digital banking among the rural population.  At present, Vijaya Bank is the only public sector financial institution to develop digital villages with focus on rural population. Already, the bank has developed 5 villages into Digital Villages.

  8. According to BMI Research, a Fitch group company, India is among the top five consumer markets in Asia offering retailers the strongest consumer spending growth of an average of 6.1% over the next five years. The other four countries are China, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Indonesia. BMI Research was founded in 1984 Business Monitor International and later in 2014 was acquired by Fitch Group. The firm performs industry and financial market analysis in 24 industries and 200 global markets.

  9. The Reserve Bank of India has kept repo rate unchanged at 6.25% in its second bi-monthly monetary policy review. Reverse Repo rate has been kept unchanged at 6%. The RBI has cut the Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR) by 50 basis points to 20%.

  10. SEBI has granted conditional approval for the appointment of Vikram Limaye as the MD and CEO of the NSE.

  11. According to UNCTAD’s World Investment Report 2017, India continues to remain as a favourite destination for FDI even though tax related concerns remain as a deterrent for the foreign investors.

  12. Reserve Bank of India has said that it will release new batch of Rs 500 currency notes whose design will be similar in all respects to the Rs 500 rupee banknotes of the Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series which were released post demonetisation.

  13. According to RBI, India’s foreign exchange (Forex) reserves have increased by $2.404 billion to touch a lifetime high of $381.167 billion in the week that ended on June 2. The increase was due to increase in foreign currency assets (FCAs).

  14. SEBI has allowed options trading on futures contract of commodities. However, the capital market regulator has allowed the commodity derivatives exchanges to initially launch options on futures of only one commodity.

  15. SEBI has come up with comprehensive guidelines asking the Commodity derivatives exchanges to compulsorily set up investor protection and service funds.

  16. Telecom giant Verizon has acquired Yahoo’s core business for $4.48bn (£3.51m), thus ending Yahoo’s two-decade long run as an independent company. Verizon is the No.1 wireless operator in the US.

  17. RBI’s Internal Advisory Committee (IAC) has identified 12 bank accounts constituting nearly 25% of the gross bad loans for immediate referral and resolution under the bankruptcy law. Each of the 12 identified accounts was having more than 5,000 crore rupees of outstanding loans, of which at least 60% was classified as non-performing by banks as of March 31, 2016. The RBI, however, has not disclosed the names of the accounts.

  18. According to Reserve Bank of India (RBI), India’s current account deficit (CAD) narrowed during 2016-17 fiscal owing to a contraction in the country’s trade deficit. The CAD for the last fiscal narrowed down to 0.7% of the GDP from that of 1.1% in 2015-16 due to contraction in the trade deficit. Country’s trade deficit narrowed down to $112.4 billion in 2016-17 from $130.1 billion in 2015-16. Further, the net FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) inflows in 2016-17 also got narrowed to $35.6 billion from $36 billion during 2015-16.

  19. Switzerland has ratified automatic exchange of financial account information with India and 40 other countries. This will facilitate Switzerland to share information about suspected black money with India and other 40 nations.

  20. Former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, who is hailed as the father of German unification has passed away. He was responsible for unifying Germany after the 1989 fall of the Berlin Wall despite facing stiff resistance from Margaret Thatcher and Mikhail Gorbachev.

  21. Anil Ambani’s Reliance Defence Ammunition which is a subsidiary of Reliance Infrastructure has entered into a strategic partnership with Serbia’s state-run Yugoimport to manufacture ammunition in India. The joint venture is expected to target business opportunities worth Rs 20,000 crore from Indian armed forces in the next 10 years.

  22. The GST Council headed by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley comprising of state finance ministers as members have decided to set up a five-member anti-profiteering authority to decide on levying the penalty if businesses do not pass on the benefit of price reduction to consumers under GST regime. The GST Council has also approved the anti-profiteering rules.

  23. The government has notified the roll out of Goods and Services Tax (GST) from July 1st.

  24. Union Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu has launched India’s largest municipal bond programme.

  25. Mukesh Ambani led Reliance Jio Infocomm has launched the Asia-Africa-Europe (AAE-1) submarine cable system. It is claimed to be world’s longest 100Gbps technology-based submarine system. It stretches for over 25,000km from Marseille, France to Hong Kong. It will have 21 cable landings across Asia and Europe. Using it, Jio will continue to offer its customers the most exceptional high speed internet and digital service experience.

  26. China has launched its first X-ray space telescope to study black holes, pulsars and gamma-ray bursts. The telescope weighing 2.5 tonne was sent to the space using China’s Long March-4B rocket. The satellite was launched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center.

  27. China is planning to send mini-ecosystems comprising of potato seeds and silkworm eggs to the Moon by next year. The move is aimed at studying how the organisms develop in Moon.

  28. NASA’s Orion Spacecraft which has been designed to carry astronauts to deep space destinations like Moon and Mars has successfully carried out a series of tests to test its critical safety systems. 

 SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

  1. NASA’s Parker Solar Probe will be launched in the summer of 2018 to explore the sun’s atmosphere. The purpose of the launch will be to study sun’s outer atmosphere and to understand how sun works. The name of the probe initially called the Solar Probe Plus has been renamed as the Parker Solar Probe in honor of astrophysicist Eugene Parker. This is the first time NASA has named a spacecraft after a living person. 

  2. NASA is all set to launch the world’s first ever mission devoted for studying neutron stars. NASA will  launch the Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer, or NICER, aboard a Falcon 9 rocket. The NICER will be installed aboard the International Space Station (ISS) as an external attached payload. About a week after its installation, the NICER will begin observing neutron stars. The mission will focus especially on Pulsars. During the mission, NASA will also carry out the world’s first demonstration of X-ray navigation in space.

  3. Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur has developed a wireless technology called ‘AmbuSens‘ for remote monitoring of condition of those patients who are ferried in ambulances.

  4. The world’s first hybrid ‘aeroboat’ which has been built by an Indo-Russian joint venture has been unveiled at a start-ups event organized by Russia’s state-run Skolkovo Foundation.

  5. NASA will launch the Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket into the space that will release blue-green and red artificial clouds. The launch is expected to support space studies. The launch which was originally scheduled for May 31 eventually got delayed due to poor weather conditions. The ground stations will require clear skies to clearly view blue-green and red artificial clouds that will be produced as part of the test. These artificial clouds will be visible from New York to North Carolina.

  6. CSIR-Structural Engineering Research Centre (SERC), Chennai, has come up with a cost-effective toilet. The toilet is expected to be set up in those areas where toilet coverage is not available.

  7. Scientists have discovered the hottest known exoplanet, designated KELT-9b which is warmer than most stars in the universe. The study has been published in the journal Nature. Exoplanet is a planet that does not orbit the Sun and instead orbits a different star, stellar remnant, or brown dwarf. They are also called as extrasolar planet.

  8. Mission officials for NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) have announced the initial science targets for the James Webb Space Telescope. The JWST has been scheduled to look at a large number of things in the universe including icy moons, distant exoplanets and galaxy clusters. It will look at very first galaxies after the Big Bang, search for fingerprints of life on Enceladus, Europa, and exoplanets like TRAPPIST-1e etc. As a part of the initial observations, 2100 observations has been planned for the JWST by the mission handlers. JWST, being the most powerful telescope designed and built on Earth is scheduled to be launched in October 2018 on an Ariane 5 rocket from French Guiana.

  9. NASA’s Kepler Telescope has identified 10 Earth-like planets outside the solar system that are expected to host life due to their right size and temperature. This finding is a boost  in the hope for life elsewhere. Exoplanet: It is a planet that does not orbit the Sun and instead orbits a different star, stellar remnant, or brown dwarf. It is also termed as extrasolar planet.

  10. ISRO’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) completes 1000 earth days in orbit. The orbiter has outlived its lifespan which is more than 5 times the number of days the orbiter was designated to last in orbit. The MOM has at present completed 388 orbits of Mars and has sent 715 images back to earth. According to the scientists, the MOM is in good health and shows no signs of slowing down. India has plans to send Mangalyaan 2.0 and a new mission to Venus after 2020.

  11. NASA is testing the effectiveness of a flexible solar array, the Roll-Out Solar Array, or ROSA, on space station for the very first time. ROSA is expected to one day power satellites and spacecraft. NASA had earlier tested the ROSA technology in vacuum chambers on the Earth but this is the first time it is testing the technology in space.

  12. Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is all set to launch earth observation satellite Cartosat-2 series weighing 712 kg and 30 nano-satellites using Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV).

  13. NASA has launched world’s lightest satellite weighing only 64 grams designed by 18-year-old boy Rifath Sharook from Tamil Nadu. The tiny satellite has been named as KalamSat after the former President APJ Abdul Kalam. The tiny satellite was launched into space on a sounding rocket from NASA’s facility in Wallops Island.

  14. ISRO has successfully launched GSAT-17 communication Satellite onboard the Ariane-5 launch vehicle from the Guiana Space Center at French Guiana on June 28. GSAT-17 will be the ISRO’s third satellite that is launched within a span of three months.

  15. The NASA has successfully launched Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket that created colourful artificial clouds visible in the skies of the US. The rocket was launched from its Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

  16. NASA has reached a major milestone in developing a quieter supersonic passenger jet that is capable of safely travelling over land.

  17. Ganeshan Neelakanta Iyer has become the first Indian to be nominated as a member of the Umpires and Referees Committee (URC) by International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF).  He will serve for a term of two years which is further extendable.

  18. Ireland’s Fine Gael party has elected a 38 year old Leo Varadkar as prime minister of Ireland. He will succeed Enda Kenny. Varadkar will be confirmed as prime minister when Irish parliament next sits on June 13. Leo Varadkar has earned the distinction of becoming Ireland’s first gay prime minister. His election is a striking sign of the Ireland’s rapid social change which was once a staunchly Catholic country. He will also be the youngest person ever and the first from an ethnic minority background to become the Prime Minister of Ireland.

PERSON IN NEWS

  1. Shashi Shekar Vempati has been appointed as the CEO of Prasar Bharati based on the recommendation of the three-member committee headed by Vice President.

  2. India’s Manika Batra and Mouma Das has created history by becoming the first Indian pair to reach the quarterfinals of the World Table Tennis Championships.

  3. NASA has selected 12 new astronauts including an Indian-American, Lt Col Raja “Grinder” Chari, from 18000 applications, Lt Col Raja Grinder Chari, 39, is a commander of the 461st Flight Test Squadron as well as the director of the F-35 Integrated Test Force at Edwards Air Force Base in California. He belongs to Iowa. His father is from India. He has obtained his Master’s degree in aeronautics and astronautics from MIT and has graduated from the US Naval Test Pilot School.

  4. Hoshiar Singh, a 1994 batch officer of the Indian Telecom Service has been appointed as Registrar of Copyrights for a period of five years as per the recent order issued by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

  5. Sahithi Pingali, a twelfth grader from Bengaluru will get a minor planet in Milky Way named after her as a reward for developing an integrated mobile phone app and lake monitoring kit to monitor pollution in water bodies.

  6. Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare J P Nadda has been conferred the WHO Director-General’s Special Recognition Award for global tobacco control. The award was presented to him by Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia at the ‘National Consultation on Accelerating Implementation of WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) for achievement of SDGs’.

  7. Renowned Telugu poet and writer Cingireddi Narayana Reddy has passed away. In 1992, Reddy was awarded the country’s third-highest civilian honour, Padma Bhushan. In 1977, he was awarded the Padma Shri. In 1997, he was nominated to the Upper House of Parliament. In 1998, he received the prestigious Jnanpith award for his poetic work Visvambara which got translated into three other languages. Reddy has also written several songs for Telugu movies.

  8. In a first Preet Kaur Gill has become the first Sikh to be elected to the British Parliament’s House of Commons. Similarly, Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi has become the first turban-wearing Sikh to be elected to the House of Commons.

  9. Former Chief Justice of India Prafullachandra Natwarlal Bhagwati who is considered as a pioneer of Judicial Activism has passed away. Justice Bhagwati was 95 years old. Justice Bhagwati introduced the concepts of Public Interest Litigation (PIL) and absolute liability to the Indian judicial system.

  10. Law expert Neeru Chadha has been elected to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Seas (ITLOS). With this election, she has become the first Indian women to win a crucial election to a top UN judicial body that deals with disputes related to the law of the sea. Neeru has become the first Indian woman to be appointed as a judge at the ITLOS.

  11. Palbinder Kaur Shergill has become the first turbaned Sikh woman to be appointed as Canada’s Supreme Court judge. The announcement was made by the minister of justice and attorney general of Canada Jody Wilson-Raybould.

  12. ndia’s Skipper Virat Kohli has created a record by becoming the quickest batsman to score 8000 runs in one-day international cricket beating South Africa’s AB de Villier’s record by seven fewer innings. Virat Kohli has managed to cross the 8000 run mark in his 175th innings during India’s match against Bangladesh in ICC Champion’s Trophy semi-final in Birmingham.

  13. Kaushik Basu has taken over as president of the International Economic Association (IEA). Basu will serve a three-year term as the President. Kaushik Basu has served as India’s chief economic adviser from 2009 to 2012. He has also served as senior vice-president and chief economist at the World Bank from 2012 to 2016. At present, Basu is the C. Marks Professor of International Studies at Cornell University.

  14. Nashik’s army doctor Srinivas Gokulnath and Nagpur’s doctor Amit Samarth has created history by becoming the first Indians to complete the 4,900-km Race Across America (RAAM) in the solo 18-59 age category.

  15. S. President Donald Trump has appointed an Indian-American named Krishna R Urs as the new US Ambassador to Peru.

  16. Dr Manoj Soni has taken Oath of Office and Secrecy as a member of the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). The Oath was administered to him by the UPSC Chairman Prof. David R. Syiemlieh.

SPORTS

  1. Historian Ramachandra Guha has tendered his resignation as BCCI administrator citing personal reasons. He submitted his resignation letter to Chairman of the Committee of Administrators of the BCCI Vinod Rai on May 28.

  2. India captain Virat Kohli, former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and left-handed batsmen, Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina are the only Indians who featured in ESPN’s ranking of the 100 most famous active athletes in the world.

  3. Rohan Bopanna has won his maiden Grand Slam title along with his Canadian partner Gabriela Dabrowski by winning the French Open mixed doubles trophy. This is Bopanna’s maiden Grand Slam title at French Open. With this title win he has become only the fourth Indian to clinch a major, The other three being Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi and Sania Mirza who all have won Grand Slam trophies for India.

  4. Ace Indian Shuttler B Sai Praneeth has clinched Thailand Grand Prix Gold title by defeating Indonesia’s Jonatan Christie 17-21, 21-18, 21-19  in Bangkok.

  5. The International Olympic Committee has approved a number of new events for the 2020 Tokyo Games at the IOC’s Executive Board meeting held at Lausanne, Switzerland. The new events were added to reflect the IOC’s focus on gender equality and appeal to young people.

  6. Rohan Bopanna has won his maiden Grand Slam title along with his Canadian partner Gabriela Dabrowski by winning the French Open mixed doubles trophy. This is Bopanna’s maiden Grand Slam title at French Open. With this title win he has become only the fourth Indian to clinch a major, The other three being Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi and Sania Mirza who all have won Grand Slam trophies for India.

  7. Spain’s Rafael Nadal has defeated Swiss third-seeded Stan Wawrinka 6-2, 6-3, 6-1 to win his record 10th French Open title. This will be his fifteenth major title win. With this victory, Rafael Nadal has become the first man or woman in the Open era to clinch a Grand Slam tournament 10 times. The Open era which began in 1968 allowed professional players to compete with amateurs in the Grand Slam tournaments.

  8. Unseeded Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia has lifted the the 2017 French Open Women’s Singles crown. She defeated Simona Halep 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.  This will be Ostapenko’s first ever Grand Slam title. With this win, Ostapenko, 20, has become the first unseeded woman to win the French Open after Britain’s Margaret Scriven’s feat in 1933.

  9. Indian shooters Jitu Rai and Heena Sidhu have clinched the gold medal in mixed team 10m air pistol event of the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup held at Gabala, Azerbaijan.

  10. Lewis Hamilton has won Canadian Grand Prix at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, Canada. It is Hamilton’s sixth victory at the Canadian Grand Prix. Previously, he had won the titles in 2007, 2010, 2012, 2015 and 2016. It is also his third victory this season and the 56th of his career.

  11. Indian Skipper Virat Kohli has reclaimed the top spot in the recently released ICC ODI batting rankings. He overtook South Africa’s AB de Villiers and Australia’s David Warner to reach the number one position. In January, Kohli managed to reach the top spot but was able to stay at the top only for just four days.

  12. Rafael Nadal has increased his rankings by two spots to stand at No.2 in the ATP rankings which is his highest since October 2014.

  13. The International Cricket Council (ICC) has appointed Imran Khawaja as its deputy chairman. Imran Khawaja is Chairman of Associates counties and a veteran administrator from Singapore.

  14. India’s Kidambi Srikanth has lifted the Indonesia Open Super Series badminton title at Jakarta by defeating Japan’s Kazumasa Sakai in straight sets 21-11, 21-19. For Srikanth who is currently World No. 22 this is a big title win. It is Srikanth’s third Super Series title after 2014 China Open and 2015 India Open.

  15. Indian shooters Yashaswini Singh Deswal and Anish Bhanwala has bagged gold in the Women’s 10m Air Pistol and Men’s 25m Standard Pistol competition respectively in the Junior World Rifle/Pistol Championship held in Germany.

  16. The world No.11 Kidambi Srikanth has sealed his second successive Super Series win by defeating reigning Olympic champion Chen Long in the Australian Open summit clash in Sydney. Chen Long is World No.6 and also the current All England champion. Srikanth had lost all of his previous five encounters with Chen Long.