June, 2017

US slaps sanctions on Chinese bank

United States has slapped unprecedented sanctions on a Chinese bank accused of laundering North Korean cash. Bank of Dandong would be severed from US financial system for acting as a conduit for illicit North Korean financial activity. Bank will now be prevented from having accounts or doing business with US financial institutions. US also slapped sanctions on a Chinese shipping company.

US approves arms sales to Taiwan

US State Department has approved weapons sales to Taiwan worth a total of $1.4 billion. The arms sales contains 7 items, including Early Warning Radar Surveillance systems, the Joint Stand-off Weapon, anti-radiation missiles, torpedoes and components for SM-2 missiles. The sale will anger China, which regards Taiwan as part of its territory. China has long criticized US arms sales to Taiwan.

National Statistics Day

National Statistics Day is observed every year on 29 June, on the occasion of Birth anniversary of India’s eminent statistician Late Prof Mahalanobis. Aim of this Day is to create public awareness about importance of statistics in socio-economic planning and policy formulation, to acknowledge the contribution of Prof. Mahalanobis. Theme for 2017 Statistics Day is Administrative Statistics.

ADB commits USD 10 billion

Asian Development Bank has committed USD 10 billion support for infrastructure building and immediate development needs of less-developed states in India. ADB has also decided to increase the annual funding by USD 1 billion to USD 4 billion. ADB has also assured its support to relatively lesser developed states in the area of power, transport, urban development, and health services.

Sinha assumes charge as I&B Secretary

Narendra Kumar Sinha, a 1980 batch IAS officer of Bihar cadre has assumed charge as the Information and Broadcasting Secretary. He will take charge in place of Ajay Mittal, who has been appointed as the Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training. Prior to being Secretary, Sinha served as Principal Secretary, Information Technology Department, Government of Bihar.

Anti-hunger activist awarded by Queen

Anti-hunger activist Ankit Kawatra was awarded the Queen’s Young Leaders Award for 2017 at a ceremony in Buckingham Palace. He was awarded for his exceptional work towards solving hunger and malnutrition in India by Queen Elizabeth II. He is the founder of Feeding India, that aims to eradicate hunger and food wastage in India. He was also selected as one of the 17 UN Young Leaders for SDG.

Dravid to continue as coach

Board of Control for Cricket in India has announced that Rahul Dravid will continue to remain the coach for India A and U-19 teams for the next two years. He was first appointed as the coach for the two teams back in the year 2015. In his first assignment as coach, ‘A’ side won the triangular series in Australia while Under-19 team emerged Runners-up in the 2016 World Cup.

Germany Approves Same-Sex Marriage

German politicians have voted to legalise same-sex marriage in a snap vote after Chancellor Merkel changed her mind to allow a free vote. The move brings Germany into line with many other European nations including France, Britain and Spain. Bill grants same-sex couples full marital rights, including child adoption. Lawmakers voted by 393 votes in favor of same-sex marriage to 226 against.

Kailash Mansarovar yatra cancelled

Kailash Mansarovar yatra through Nathu La in Sikkim has been cancelled. The decision comes in the wake of face-off b/w Indian and Chinese troops over a disputed area along Sino-Indian border. The yatra is considered holy by Hindus, Buddhists and Jains and is undertaken by hundreds of pilgrims every year. However the pilgrimage through Lipulekh Pass in Uttarakhand will continue as scheduled

Government cuts PPF, NSC rate

Govt has reduced interest rates on small saving schemes, including PPF, NSCs and Kisan Vikas Patra by 10 basis points. PPF and NSCs will now earn 7.8%, while KVPs will fetch only 7.5%. Senior Citizen’s Savings Scheme and Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana will now offer 8.3%. Interest rates on small savings are linked to the benchmark 10-year govt bond yields and are revised every 3 months

July 1 to be observed as GST Day

Central Board of Excise and Customs has announced that July 1 will be known as ‘GST Day’. It will be celebrated in all offices of CBEC just as Central Excise Day and International Customs Day is celebrated. All the offices of CBEC have been instructed to be open on 1st July as a trade facilitation measure. CBEC had organised outreach programmes and training sessions for the new regime.

Venugopal appointed as Attorney General

Senior advocate K K Venugopal’s name has been cleared for appointment as the Attorney General for India. He will replace Mukul Rohatgi who has decided to step down as the top law officer. He is a noted constitutional expert and recipient of Padma Vibhushan & Padma Bhushan. He would become a law officer for 2nd time after being an Additional Solicitor General during the Morarji Desai govt.

Modi inaugurates TransStadia Arena

PM Narendra Modi inaugurated the TransStadia Arena a stadium complex in Maninagar area in Gujarat’s Ahmedabad. It was inaugurated almost eight months after the venue played host to a world sporting event. The Arena by TransStadia is a Rs. 550 crore project, built through a unique Public Private Partnership model, and is hailed as India’s first convertible stadium.

Myanmar to bar human right investigators

30 : Myanmar’s govt has said that it will instruct its embassies around the world to bar members of a UN approved fact-finding mission from entering the country. Fact finding mission is supposed to investigate human rights violations by security forces against Muslim Rohingya minority and other groups. UN Human Rights Council approved the mission by in March in response to international pressure.

World’s first “Forest City”

China has commenced construction of the world’s first “Forest City” as part of China’s larger efforts to fight pollution and become greener. The new ‘Forest City’, currently being built in southern China’s Guangxi Province, would be home to 30,000 people once it’s completed in 2020. The city will run on renewable energy sources and be connected to Liuzhuo via an electric rail line.

Web App for Legal Services to Prisoners

National Legal Services Authority has launched a Web Application for free Legal Services to Prisoners. It will allow State and District Legal Services Authorities to feed the data for individual prison inmate in the jails within their jurisdiction. Software will generate reports showing total number of inmates, number of inmates represented by legal services lawyers and by private lawyers.

Facebook drone completes test flight

Facebook has completed its second test flight for its solar-powered, internet drone called Aquila. The flight was conducted in Yuma, Arizona and lasted for one hour and 46 minutes. The drone landed perfectly on the prepared landing site unlike the first attempt where it had a crash landing. Facebook plans to use the drone to beam internet access to unconnected parts of the world.

Indian-origin boy beats Einstein

A 11-year-old Indian-origin boy Arnav Sharma in UK has secured the top possible score of 162 on a Mensa IQ test. He scored 162 points, 2 points higher than the 160 score both Einstein and Hawking achieved. His mark in the exam puts him in the top 1% Britain in terms of IQ level. Mensa is believed to be the largest and oldest high IQ society in the world.

Training programme COMMIT launched

Training programme “Comprehensive Online Modified Modules on Induction Training” for State Govt officials has been launched by Dr Jitendra Singh. It’s Objective is to improve public service delivery mechanism & provide citizen centric administration through capacity building of officials who interact with citizens on day-to-day basis. It has been developed by DoPT in collaboration with UNDP

UN votes to reduce peacekeepers

UN Security Council has unanimously approved a resolution sharply reducing the joint United Nations-African Union peacekeeping force in Sudan’s Darfur region. The resolution will reduce the number of peacekeepers by 44% and number of international police by about 27% in the Darfur mission. The UN-AU force was established in 2007 with a mandate to help protect civilians in Darfur.

Vidya Balan becomes ambassador

Vidya Balan has been named as the ambassador to the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne for the second time. Festival will run from August 10 to August 22, Over 60 films from India, indie films and short films in 20 different languages will be screened. Theme for this year is diversity. IFFM is one of the largest Indian film festivals outside India which is supported by Victorian government.

Shukla to head BCCI Special Committee

Rajeev Shukla will head a 7 member Special Committee which will to look into the implementation of the Lodha Panel reforms. The committee will also be responsible for identifying those points that are difficult to be implemented, in regards to Justice RM Lodha Committee reforms. Sourav Ganguly, BCCI treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry and acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary are also part of the panel.

FIFA to shift U-17 World Cup matches

FIFA is set to shift India’s Under-17 World Cup matches from Mumbai to Delhi. Shift in venue is due to pressure from sports ministry as it felt it was appropriate that the capital hosts the home team’s games. Navi Mumbai was originally scheduled to host Group A matches. The first FIFA event in India will be held across 6 Indian cities from October 6 to 28.

NIFT gets new Chairperson

Union government (Ministry of Textiles) has appointed Rajesh V Shah as Chairperson on the Board of Governors of the National Institute of Fashion Technology up to March 31, 2019. He will replace former cricketer Chetan Chauhan who resigned from the post after being made the Sports Minister of Uttar Pradesh. NIFT has various centres across India and comes under Union Ministry of Textiles.

Indian-American as US Ambassador to Peru

U.S. President Donald Trump has appointed Indian-American Krishna R Urs as the new US Ambassador to Peru. Mr. Urs is currently Charge d’ Affaires of the US Embassy in Madrid, Spain. He has served at seven US embassies as well in senior leadership positions in Washington and has specialised in economic issues and developed extensive policy experience in the Andean region of South America.

A new service for women’s safety

Bollywood Actor Preity Zinta in association with Anthony Moorhouse has launched a new service for women’s safety called the Kavach Safety. It is a “pro victim – anti perpetrator” emergency response service that assures safety at the press of a button. It offers a full range of support services, backed by a leading team of crisis experts to ensure safety and security needs of women.

China passes new intelligence law

China’s legislature has passed a new intelligence law which gave authorities new powers to monitor suspects, raid premises and seize vehicles & devices. It will give authorities new legal grounds to monitor and investigate foreign and domestic individuals in order to protect national security. It aims to strengthen China’s security against threats from both within and outside the country.

Approval for disinvestment of Air India

Cabinet has given in-principle approval for disinvestment of state-run carrier Air India. A group headed by Jaitley will be formed to decide on the treatment of unsustainable debt of Air India. NITI Aayog has suggested complete privatisation of Air India which has a debt of over ` 52,000 crore. Air India was launched in 1932 by JRD Tata as Tata Airlines and was taken over by govt in 1953.

Communication satellite GSAT-17 launched

Communication satellite GSAT-17 was successfully launched by a heavy duty rocket of Arianespace from spaceport of Kourou in French Guiana. It is designed to provide continuity of services of operational satellites in C, extended C & S bands. It has equipment to aid meteorology forecasts and search & rescue operations across the sub-continent. This is 3rd satellite launch by ISRO this month.

UPSC appoints Manoj Soni as member

UPSC has accepted Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University former Vice Chancellor Manoj Soni as its member. He is a political science scholar specialising in international relation studies and is the youngest Vice Chancellor since independence. He is the recipient of several awards and recognitions including the rare honour of “Honorary Mayor-President of the City of Baton Rouge”.

Uttarakhand gets award of excellence

Uttarakhand was conferred with the award of excellence at 2nd Global Skill Development Summit held in Paris. The state was awarded for it’s innovations and extensive use of IT for skilling the youth. Initiatives are being taken to impart high quality job oriented training to the youth so that they could avail of employment opportunities in tourism, wellness, agriculture and security sectors.

War room set up to deal with GST crises

A “mini war room” has been set up in the finance ministry to deal with crises related to the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax. It will act as a quick resource centre for Central and State government officials to address their queries on GST. A team of tech-savvy young officers will be manning the “war room” to assist officials in resolving their GST-related queries.

Top supplier in health sector to UN

According to UN, India continues to be the main supplier in health to UN system with USD 803.79 million within the health sector in 2016. India supplied 6% of procurements by UN organisations in 2016, second highest after US. Procurement from India included food, management services and medical equipment. Goods and services from India were procured primarily by UNICEF, PAHO, UNDP and WFP.

US issues new visa criteria

US has issued new visa criteria for 6 Muslim Nations and all refugees that require a “close” family or business tie to the US. Applicants from 6 countries Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen will have to prove a relationship with a US person or entity in US to get the visa. Extended family like Grandparents, grandchildren, uncles or others are not considered to be a close relation.

ISL gets recognition from AFC

Indian Super League has been finally granted official recognition by the Asian Football Confederation. AFC gave its consent to All India Football Federation’s proposal through a letter signed by general secretary Dato Windsor John. As of now, winner of the I-league will participate in AFC Champions League qualifiers, while next ISL champion will be eligible for an AFC Cup qualifying slot.

Vice-Presidential election to take place

Election Commission has announced the dates for the poll process to elect the vice-president of India. If necessary, polls will happen on August 5 and votes will be counted on the same day. Vice-president is elected by members of electoral college consisting of members of both houses of Parliament in accordance with system of proportional representation by means of a single transferable vote

India gives $100,000 to UN Tax Fund

India has become the first country to voluntarily contribute $100,000 to a UN fund to help developing countries actively participate in the discussion of tax issues. Voluntary contributions for the fund have been called for by the UN and the committee since its establishment in 2006. The fund aims to support the work of the Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters.

Printing of ` 200 currency notes begins

RBI has begun printing bills of 200 rupees for the first time to help ease consumer transactions. New ` 200 notes will carry advanced security features to prevent counterfeiting. Introduction of 200 rupee notes will replenish the missing middle, triggered by the withdrawal of the old series of 500 rupee notes. The proposal to issue ` 200 banknotes was cleared by the RBI in March.

Modi in Gujarat

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the centenary celebrations of Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad. He will also release the coin and postal stamp in the honour of Shrimad Rajchandraji on his 150th birth anniversary at Abhay Ghat. Modi is on a 2 day visit to Gujarat that goes to elections later this year. He will inaugurate 2 water supply projects worth ` 552 crore for the region.

First Indian PM to visit Israel

29 : Narendra Modi will become the first Indian PM to visit Israel with his 3 day visit starting July 4. Visit not only marks 25 years of diplomatic relations b/w the 2 countries but also a definite shift in India’s approach towards Israel. Modi will meet Israeli PM Netanyahu over a period of 2 days to discuss matters of mutual interest. India is the largest buyer of Israeli military equipment.

Malinga handed one-year ban

Lasith Malinga has received a suspended one-year ban after pleading guilty to comments he made to the media in breach of his contract. The sanction is suspended for six months and Malinga will also be fined 50% of the match fee from his next one-day international. The charge against Malinga came from his response to criticism by Sri Lanka’s sports minister over the team’s fitness levels.

8 medals at Junior World Championship

Indian shooting squad finished at the 2nd position at ISSF Junior World Championship with 3 gold, 2 silver & 3 bronze medals. India picked up a gold and silver in team and individual sections of 25m pistol junior men’s event, as well as the team bronze in 25m pistol junior women’s event. Anish Bhanwala won 3 medals, 1 of each colour. China topped the tally with 19 medals, including 8 gold.

Sharjah named World Book Capital

Sharjah has been declared as the World Book Capital by UNESCO for the year 2019. It has been chosen by an international committee of UNESCO experts for the quality of its literary and cultural activities and its efforts to make books accessible to the entire population of the country. Sharjah will also launch Sharjah Publishing City, a space entirely dedicated to publishing and printing.

Facebook crosses 2 billion monthly users

Facebook has hit a new milestone by crossing more than 2 billion monthly active users in less than 5 years after hitting the 1 billion mark. Facebook’s user base is now bigger than the population of any single country and represents more than a quarter of world’s 7.5 billion people. Twitter by comparison has 328 million monthly active users while instagram has over 700 million active users.

Basu takes over as IEA president

Former chief economic advisor Kaushik Basu has taken over as president of International Economic Association . He will be serving as the president of IEA for a period of 3 years starting from June 23. He has also served as senior vice-president and chief economist at the World Bank from 2012 to 2016 and as the chief economic adviser to Govt of India from 2009 to 2012.

Dhanraj Pillay to get Bharat Gaurav

Former India hockey captain Dhanraj Pillay will be awarded with East Bengal football club’s highest honour “Bharat Gaurav” on their foundation day. He played a huge role in reviving the Indian team and performed brilliantly during his 15-year career. He also received the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award for his performance in 1999-2000 and was awarded Padma Shri and civilian award in 2000.

Apple acquires SensoMotoric

Apple has confirmed its acquisition of SensoMotoric Instruments, a German computer vision company specialising in augmented reality and eye tracking. SensoMotoric was founded in 1991 and builds eye tracking hardware and software for industrial and commercial use. This acquisition would help Apple to further develop software for future versions of the iPhone and other devices.

India and Netherlands sign 3 agreements

India and the Netherlands have signed three agreements, including a memorandum of understanding on water cooperation. India and Netherlands signed MoU’s on Cultural Cooperation and on Water Cooperation and an agreement on Amending Social Security Arrangement. The two countries are marking the 70th anniversary of establishment of their diplomatic ties this year.

Odisha to set up blood bank for cattle

Odisha is all set to become the first state in the country to have a blood bank for cattle. Blood bank would be set up at Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology at a cost of ` 3.5 crore. It will be funded under Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana. Blood transfusion facility for cattle blood will also be done at the proposed blood bank which will prevent death of cattle during deliveries.

Modern Bullet proof helmets for Army

Indian Army has finally received its first batch of modern bullet-proof helmets which can bear the impact even from short range. MKU Limited which supplies military equipment to UN and NATO, was awarded a contract worth ` 180 crore to manufacture about 1.6 lakh helmets. They are designed to be comfortable and can be integrated with communication and night-vision devices.

InFocus to invest $10 million in India

InFocus which has a licensing deal with Foxconn will invest $10 million in the Indian market to expand its operations. The company will line up about 16 feature phones and smartphones this year in India. InFocus is working with partners like Dixon and MCM to manufacture its phones in India and after August, it will start using Foxconn facilities in India for the purpose.

Coca-Cola to shut down analytics centre

Coca-Cola is shutting down one of its biggest analytics, technical and innovation centre in India which is located in Pune. The company will fulfil the majority of its analytical needs by using labs at its bottling operations and by leveraging third-party accredited analytical labs in India. The centre was created as a ‘world class facility’ to offer analytical and technical support.

CA Tech Partners with IIIT-Hyderabad

CA Technologies and IIT-Hyderabad have signed a collaboration agreement to set up a Co-innovation Lab at IIIT Hyderabad campus. As per the agreement, CA engineers and IIIT-Hyderabad researchers will collaborate on applied research projects which will include next generation interfaces such as NLP, AI and ML. IIT-Hyderabad is known for its cutting-edge highly visible presence in research.

JNPT at Mumbai hit by ransomware

Operations at 1 of the 3 terminals of India’s largest container port, Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust were impacted due to a ransomware attack. Attack has affected all software operations of GTI where the entire system of loading and unloading of containers is conducted through software. The current attacks come weeks after Wannacry ransomware attack which impacted millions of system globally.

1993 Mumbai serial blasts convict dies

Mustafa Dossa died of a heart attack at JJ Hospital where he was admitted after he complained of chest pain. He was one of the prime accused in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, was convicted on the charges of conspiracy, murder, and terror by a special TADA court in Mumbai. He was declared absconder after he had fled India following the serial blasts. Dossa was later extradited from UAE

Latest entry in Oxford Dictionary

Indian food essentials chana and chana dal are among the many new entries in the Oxford English Dictionary. Chickpeas (chana) and split chickpea lentils (chana dal) joined the vast list of more than 600 other words and phrases that were included in Oxford’s quarterly update. Other prominent new entries include a batch of tennis-related words like forced error as well as slang such as bagel.

New class of naval destroyer

China has launched its most powerful naval destroyer, the Type 055, which is among the largest warships in the world. It is the first of China’s new generation of destroyers and is equipped with new air defence, anti-missile, anti-ship and anti-submarine weapons. China is producing warships at a rapid clip as it modernizes its navy, about 18 ships were commissioned by Chinese Navy in 2016.

World’s first ATM turns 50

World’s first Automated Teller Machine, a technology which brought transformation in the way people obtained the cash has clocked 50 years. World’s first ATM was unveiled by Barclays at its Enfield branch in North London on June 27 1967. As a tribute, Barclays transformed the ATM at its Enfield branch into gold, added a commemorative plaque and placed a red carpet in front for its users.

EC to launch voter registration reminder

In order to reach out to maximum eligible voters, the ECI is collaborating with Facebook to launch first Nationwide “Voter Registration Reminder”. A notification regarding the reminder will be sent on 1 July to people who are eligible to vote on Facebook. The reminder will be sent out in 13 Indian languages. This is the first time Facebook has been used for enrolling new voters across India

Major Ransomware cyber-attack

28 : Many organizations across the globe have been crippled by a ransomware attack known as ‘Petya’. The virus freezes the user’s computer and demands an untraceable ransom be paid in the digital Bitcoin currency. Ukrainian firms including the state power company and Kiev’s main airport were among the first to report issues. It’s the second major global ransomware attack in the last 2 months.

China releases jailed Nobel laureate

Civil rights campaigner and Nobel peace prize winner Liu Xiaobo, has been released by china on medical parole after he was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. He was sentenced in Dec 2009 to 11 years in prison for inciting subversion of state power. He was awarded the Nobel peace prize in 2010, is the one of only three people to have won the award while jailed by their own government.

1st Indian to complete solo RAAM

Srinivas Gokulnath created history by becoming the first Indian to complete 4,900-km Race Across America in solo category. He finished the distance of 3070 miles in 11 days and 18 hours in the 18-49 age category. The time given was 12 days to complete the race, that is 13 hours earlier than the scheduled time. He completed the race from West coast to East coast of the US in his 2nd attempt.

World Bank clears $250-million loan

Skill India Mission Operation worth USD 250-million has been cleared by the World Bank for making Indian youth more employable through reskilling. SIMO will be implemented through the National Skill Development Mission and will specifically target labour market entrants. Under the programme adults in 15-59 years of age, underemployed or unemployed, will get the skill training.

PC to endorse the Skill India campaign

National Skill Development Corporation has appointed Priyanka Chopra as the brand ambassador to endorse the Skill India campaign. She will use her celebrity status to motivate youngsters to hone their abilities through a media campaign. The Skill India campaign was launched by PM Modi in July 2015 which aims to train 40 crore people by 2022 through its skilling initiatives.

Salahuddin a global terrorist

US State Department has designated Syed Salahuddin, head of Kashmiri militant group Hizbul Mujahideen as a specially designated global terrorist. As a result of this US persons are prohibited from engaging in transactions with him and all of his properties and interests in property subject to US jurisdiction are blocked. The move came just hours before the first meeting b/w Modi and Trump.

RBS to cut 443 UK jobs

UK’s largest govt owned bank, Royal Bank of Scotland has announced that it is cutting 443 UK jobs dealing with business loans and is planing to shift many of the roles to India. RBS will transfer these roles to Mumbai, to be included in the group’s growing team there, as part of a restructuring designed to cut costs. RBS is 73% owned by the UK govt after a £ 45 billion bailout in 2008.

‘Digital MSME’ scheme launched

On the occasion of first International Day for MSMEs, Union Minister Kalraj Mishra launched a new shceme – ‘Digital MSME’. The Scheme has been launched for promotion of Information & Communication Technology in the MSME Sector. The scheme revolves around Cloud Computing which is emerging as a cost effective and viable alternative in comparison to in-house Infrastructure installed by MSMEs.

Arunachal Pradesh raises retirement age

Arunachal Pradesh government has decided to increase the retirement age of regular state government employees to 60 years with effect from January 1 2018. This has been done in order to do away with differential retirement age for regular employees serving under the same government. The state government has raised the retirement age from existing 58 to 60 years.

EU fines Google 2.42 billion euros

European Union’s competition watchdog has slapped 2.42 billion euro fine on Google for breaching antitrust rules with its online shopping service. Commission found that Google had systematically given prominent placement in searches to its own comparison shopping service and demoted those of rivals in search results. It is the biggest fine ever for a single company in an EU antitrust case.

SAP India partners with MSME

SAP India has partnered with the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises to jointly launch Bharat ERP. It is aimed to make digital technologies more accessible to MSME to help them grow as the MSME sector contributes nearly 38% to the country’s GDP. SAP will provide software and training curriculum to trainers identified by the ministry under the ‘train the trainer’ method.

Vivo wins IPL title sponsorship

Vivo Electronics has won the title sponsorship rights of Indian Premier League for the next 5 seasons. The deal is valued at ` 2,199 crore, significantly higher than Pepsi’s deal worth ` 396.8 crore signed in 2012. The IPL’s title sponsorship has been held by 3 brands since the tournament was launched in 2008. For the first five years DLF held the rights while in 2013 Pepsi came on board.

Afghanistan team to train in Chennai

Afghanistan Under-19 team will be trained in Chennai, ahead of the Under-19 World Cup qualifiers to be held in Singapore. The team will be trained at the CSS-Whatmore Centre for Cricket at SRMC campus. Chennai was chosen because it offers similar conditions to that of Singapore. Players will have net sessions, centre wicket practice and will play practice matches during their stay.

Aadhaar must for e-rickshaw subsidies

Delhi govt has made Aadhaar card details compulsory for those seeking subsidy on e-rickshaws registered in the city. It has been done in order to prevent duplicacy in grant of the financial assistance. The registered owners of e-rickshaws in Delhi will be considered for a subsidy of
` 30,000 after providing their Aadhaar card details. There are over 31,000 registered e-rickshaws in Delhi.

Mexico, India to hold disarmament meet

India and Mexico have agreed to hold a conference on regional and global disarmament. The meeting would be headed by the Joint Secretary of the disarmament division of the Ministry of External Affairs from the Indian side. The latest consultations are aimed at upgrading the Privileged Partnership formed in 2007 to a strategic level as agreed upon during Modi-Nieto meeting of 2016.

Miss World title in BodyBuilding

Bhumika Sharma from Dehradun has become the first Indian woman to win the Miss World Body Building Championship. She won gold in the international championship organized by World Amateur Body Building Association. She defeated 50 women from across the world in the final rounds to clinch the title. She gained the maximum number of points in body posing, individual posing and fall category

Sonu Nigam lends his voice for ITBP

Bollywood singer Sonu Nigam has sung a 2.17 minute long hindi song for Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force. The video of the song which features ITBP border posts, its personnel and their modern equipment will be played at every ceremonial and official event of the paramilitary force from now on. The song was unveiled by Union Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi as he visited ITBP’s headquarters.

Romania picks a new Prime Minister

Romanian President Klaus Iohannis has nominated the outgoing economy minister Mihai Tudose as the new prime minister. According to Iohannis the decision has been taken to end the current political crisis which harming the economy and country’s external image abroad. Tudose now has 10 days to gain the vote of confidence in his government and his programme.

Reynolds ties up with Flair

Reynolds has tied up with pen manufacturer and distributor Flair to re-launch eight products and increase its footprint across the country. Through this partnership, Reynolds will relaunch its top selling pens into 55,000 stationery shops across India. The move is aimed at strengthening presence in India. The eight products include the jetter series, LiquiFlo, Racer Gel and trimax.

Worst human trafficking offenders

United States is set to declare China as among the world’s worst offenders in human trafficking and forced labor. China will be listed under Tier 3, the ranking system’s lowest category, which applies to countries failing to meet minimum standards to prevent human trafficking. The determination marks the first major public rebuke of China’s human rights record by the Trump administration.

Virat Kohli Retains Top Spot

27 : Indian skipper Virat Kohli has retained the number one spot in the batsmen’s list in the latest ICC Twenty20 rankings. Virat Kohli is followed by Aaron Finch and Kane Williamson who stood at 2nd and 3rd position respectively.

IDFC Bank elevates Kakar as MD and CEO

IDFC has announced the elevation of its CFO Sunil Kakar as the MD and CEO of the company with effect from July 16 for three years. He has also been appointed as additional director. Both the appointments are subject to shareholders’ approval at the annual general meeting. Kakar joined IDFC as the Group CFO and was responsible for finance and accounts, business planning among others.

SJFI annual awards winners

The Sports Journalists Federation of India has decided to confer the best Sportsperson of the Year Award to the Rio Olympics silver medallist P V Sindhu. The Best Team of the Year award was bagged by the Indian junior hockey squad which won the World Cup in Lucknow last December. Both the awards would be presented at the 40th convention of the SJFI to be held in Indore in September.

K R Mohanan Passes Away

Noted Malayalam film director K R Mohanan died following a brief illness. He was former chairman of Kerala State Chalachitra Academy and served as the director of the International Film Festival of Kerala. Mohanan was a recipient of state and national award for best films. His popular films are Ashwathama’ in 1978, ‘Purushortham’ in 1987 and ‘Swaroopam’ in 1992.

Manushi Chhillar wins Femina Miss India

Haryana’s Manushi Chhillar was crowned as the 54th Femina Miss India World 2017 winner at Yash Raj Film Studio, Mumbai. She was crowned by Miss World 2016 Stephanie Del Valle. Miss Jammu and Kashmir, Sana Dua, and Miss Bihar, Priyanka Kumari were declared the first and second runner-up respectively. Following a new format this year, the beauty pageant toured 30 states across the country.

Panel to work on new education policy

HRD ministry has appointed a 9 member panel, headed by space scientist K Kasturirangan to work on a New Education Policy. The ministry has chosen experts and educationists from wide-ranging backgrounds to be part of the panel. The panel also includes former IAS officer KJ Alphonse Kanamthanam who played a key role in helping Kerala’s Kottayam and Ernakulam districts to achieve 100% literacy.

International Day Against Drug Abuse

International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is a UN International Day against drug abuse and illegal drug trade which is observed annually on 26 June. This day aims to aims to raise awareness of the major problem that illicit drugs represent to society. The theme for 2017 is Listen First – Listening to children and youth is the first step to help them grow healthy and safe.”

Book on democracy’s darkest hour

Venkaiah Naidu and Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani released a book “The Emergency – Indian Democracy’s Darkest Hour” at Ahmedabad. The book has been written by A Surya Prakash, chairman of Prasar Bharati. The book was launched at a conference to mark the anniversary of the Emergency and to honour those who fought for restoration of democracy in the country in the mid-1970s.

Desh Bandhu Gupta passes away

Founder and chairman of Lupin, Desh Bandhu Gupta passed away at the age of 79. He started his career as an associate professor at BITS Pilani and founded Lupin in 1968 with a capital of ` 5000. In recent years he spearheaded restructuring of Lupin’s operations and its research & innovation programmes for new drugs. According to Forbes India billionaires list, his net worth was $3.6 billion

Rajdhani and Shatabdi to get makeover

Indian Railways has undertaken a complete makeover exercise in which 30 trains – 15 Rajdhani and 15 Shatabdi will under go a make over at an estimated cost of ` 25 crore. Railways have launched a 3 month programme under Project Swarn to refurbish coach interiors, improving toilets and cleanliness in coaches. Passengers will also be offered films, serials and music for entertainment purpose.

SpaceX launches 10 satellites

SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket succeeded in launching 10 communication satellites into the orbit. The rocket carried the 2nd batch of new satellites for Iridium Communications, which is replacing its fleet with a next-generation constellation of satellites. 7 minutes after liftoff, rocket’s first-stage booster returned to earth and landed on a floating platform on a ship in the Pacific Ocean.

Theresa May secures majority

Northern Ireland’s DUP has decided to support May’s govt on legislation concerning Britain’s exit from EU, securing her a slender majority in parliament. May struck a deal with DUP to back her administration after she failed to secure an outright victory in the earlier election. DUP leader said the agreement will operate to deliver a stable govt in UK’s national interest at this vital time.

Indian boxers shine at Ulaanbaatar Cup

Ankush Dahiya clinched a gold while L Devendro Singh settled for a silver medal on the final day of the Ulaanbaatar Cup boxing tournament in Mongolia. Ankush defeated Korean Man Choe Chol in a split verdict while Devendro lost to Indonesia’s Aldoms Suguro in a split decision. India thus signed off with a gold, a silver and three bronze medals from the tournament.

Govt defers TDS,TCS provisions under GST

Govt has deferred implementation of TDS and TCS provisions under GST to ensure its smooth rollout. Based on the feedback received from trade and industry, the govt has decided to postpone provision relating to TDS and TCS. Businesses with turnover of less than ` 20 lakh, will also not be required to register themselves under GST for selling goods or services through e-commerce portal.

Delhi to get driverless metro

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation’s first automated driverless metro trains are set to start its operations from October this year. The Magenta Line from Janakpuri West to Botanical Garden will be the first to roll out the driverless trains. The trains will be initially operated on Magenta and Pink Lines. These trains have high levels of automation and run on the Unattended Train Operation mode.

Yashaswini bags gold in 10m air pistol

Yashaswini Deswal created history by winning the 10m Air Pistol gold medal equalling the junior world record score of 235.9 in the final of the ISSF Junior World Championship. She eliminated Korean shooter Woori Kim for the gold medal. Her gold medal made sure India were No.2 on the points table with two gold medals, one silver and one bronze.

China’s fastest bullet train

China’s fastest next generation bullet train “Fuxing” has made its debut on Beijing-Shanghai railway line. The train can achieve speeds as high as 400 km/hour with a consistent speed of 350 km/hour. It includes a sophisticated monitoring system that constantly checks its performance & automatically slows down the train in case of emergencies. It has been designed and manufactured in China.

Hike in Visa fee for foreigners

Government of India has increased the visa fee by up to 50% for foreigners across categories. This has been done to rationalise and modify the levy charged from foreign nationals visiting India. Tourist visa up to one year will now cost $153 from the earlier $100. The tourist visa for over a year and up to five years will cost $306 instead of $120.

NASA’s CHESS to study interstellar cloud

NASA is launching a sounding rocket CHESS to study interstellar clouds and know about the earliest stages of star formation. Colorado High-resolution Echelle Stellar Spectrograph (CHESS) will measure light filtering through the interstellar medium which provides crucial information for understanding the lifecycle of stars. This is the 3rd flight for CHESS payload in past 3 years.

Tata Group to enter online grocery

Tata group is buying out the management team and technology infrastructure of Gurgaon-based GrocerMax to enter the online grocery business. The team would be used to set up online platform for Trent Hypermarket, a Tata and UK retailer, Tesco joint venture. Post the acquisition, Tata group will shut down GrocerMax’s Gurgaon business as it doesn’t have any presence in the North India market.

Italy agrees to £17 bn bailout

26 : Italy has agreed to commit about 17 billion euros in cash and state guarantees to clean up two failed banks in one of its wealthiest regions, the nation’s biggest rescue on record. Intesa Sanpaolo Spa, Italy’s biggest bank by market value has agreed to purchase the assets of the two banks for £1. Banca Popolare di Vicenza SpA and Veneto Banca SpA are the two banks hat are being bailed out.