July, 2017

3 gold medals in one night

Caeleb Dressel of US became the 1st swimmer to win 3 gold medals in a single evening at the world championships. He started with a victory in 50m freestyle, nearly broke Phelps’ record in 100 butterfly & led US quartet in a world-record rout in 4x100m mixed relay. He now has 6 gold medals in the championships, putting him in position to tie Phelps’ record of 7 at 2007 worlds in Melbourne.

Vettel wins Hungarian Grand Prix

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel has extended his world championship lead with victory in the Hungarian GP ahead of Kimi Raikkonen & Valtteri Bottas. This is his 4th win of the season and 46th of his F1 career. It was also Ferrari’s first one-two in Hungary since 2004. With this win, Vettel will take a 14-point lead over Hamilton into the summer break at the head of the Drivers’ Championship.

India bags 24 medals in Jordan

India have bagged 24 medals at the Jordan Junior and Cadet Open table tennis tournament. The tally includes 7 Gold, 7 Silver and 10 Bronze medals. In the event held at Amman, India ended as the second best finishers. The team title was denied to India in the cadet section when Payas, Yashansh Malik and Chinmaya Somaiya were defeaed by Hsu Po-Hsuan, Lin Yen-Cun & Peng Chih who claimed gold.

755 US diplomats to depart Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced that 755 staff must leave US diplomatic missions, in retaliation for new US sanctions against Moscow. This is thought to be the largest expulsion of diplomats from any country in modern history. The new US sanctions were in retaliation both for Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 and Russian interference in the US election.

Bio-glue for healing developed

Scientists have developed a super strong, flexible Bio-glue for wound healing without causing toxicity. It has been inspired by an adhesive material (glue) secreted by slugs that sticks to biological tissues. The research was conducted at Harvard University’s Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

Jiyo Parsi phase II campaign launched

The Union Ministry of Minority Affairs has launched Jiyo Parsi Publicity Phase-2 in Mumbai, Maharashtra under the Jiyo Parsi scheme. The campaign was launched in 2014, to address the issue of dwindling population of India’s Parsi community. The last 2011 census put the number of Indian Parsis at 57,264, dropping from 114,000 in 1941.

Katerina Siniakova wins Swedish Open

Caroline Wozniacki struggled with injury as she lost the Swedish Open final to Katerina Siniakova. Siniakova was playing in the Swedish Open final for the second year in a row after losing last year to German Laura Siegemund. The 2017 Swedish Open was the 9th edition in women’s category.

Max India pulls out merger deal

Max India has withdrawn the proposed merger agreement b/w Max Life & Max Financial Services with HDFC Standard Life Insurance. The scheme did not go well with IRDA as it was in contravention of the Section 35 of the Insurance Act that does not allow merger of an insurance business with a non-insurance firm. Max India was supposed to amalgamate Max Life Insurance with Max Financial Services.

Easy to clean blankets to be introduced

The railways have roped in the National Institute of Fashion Design to design lightweight blankets with less wool content. A trial of ‘thin, cold washable blankets’ is also being carried out in the Central Railway zone as a pilot project. The plan envisages increasing the frequencies of washing of blankets and replacing the existing ones in a phased manner

Indian boxers at Czech Boxing Tournament

Indian boxers clinched 5 gold, 2 silver and 1 bronze medal at the 48th Grand Prix Usti Nad Labem in the Czech Republic. World Championships bronze-medallist Shiva Thapa, former Commonwealth Games gold-medallist Manoj Kumar, Amit Phangal, Gaurav Bidhuri and Satish Kumar claimed gold medals. Kavinder Bisht in 52 kg and Manish Panwar in 81 kg settled for silver medals.

SBI slashes interest rate

State Bank of India has cut the interest rate on savings accounts with up to Rs. 1 crore to 3.5% from 4%. The decline in the rate of inflation and high real interest rates are the primary considerations warranting a revision in the rate of interest on savings bank deposits. The cut in the savings rate by SBI is the first such move by any bank since the RBI deregulated the savings rate in 2011.

World’s longest suspension footbridge

The longest pedestrian suspension bridge in the world was officially opened in Switzerland.. At 494 metres long, it overtakes the “Titan-RT” bridge in Germany as the world’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge. The steel bridge which connects 2 sections of a walking trail b/w Grächen & Zermatt in the south of the country, was unveiled after a construction period of just 10 weeks.

Ravi Mittal appointed part-time member

Ravi Mittal, who has joined as additional secretary in the Finance Ministry in place of Anil Khachi, is now a part-time member on the board of Irdai. Mittal has replaced N S Rao at Irdai, who is a joint secretary level officer. Besides, Maruthi Prasad Tangirala, a 1990-batch IP&TA&FS officer, has been appointed as ED at Irdai.

Ultimate Table Tennis champions

Falcons TTC emerged champions of the inaugural Ultimate Table Tennis, the country’s newest franchise sports league. They beat Shaze Challengers. Li Ping put Shaze Challengers ahead with a 2-1 win over Sanil Shetty in men’s singles, the opening match of the tie.

India becomes export country in Steel

According to Minister for Steel Chaudhary Birender Singh India for the first time has become a net export country in Steel. He said the steel imports in the country has gone down by 39% and exports has gone up by 102% last year. The crude steel production has registered 3.5 per cent growth during April-June 2017-18.

Constitutional Assembly election

The Venezuelan Constituent Assembly elections of 2017 took place on 30 July 2017 on the presidential decree of President Nicolás Maduro. It was the first election of a Constituent Assembly, which has the power to rewrite the constitution, since the Constituent Assembly elections of 1999 called by referendum. President Maduro called for the Assembly on May 1 amid a political crisis.

Free Hepatitis-C vaccine from next year

Union Health Minister JP Nadda has announced that the government will provide Hepatitis C vaccine free from next year and would help in tackling the liver related diseases. The government is planning to provide upto 3,000 crore rupees in the budget for this purpose. The deadly Hepatitis C virus afflicts as many as 150 million people worldwide and possibly 12 million in India.

Flipkart launches Billion

Flipkart has launched a new brand called Billion across categories such as home appliances & fashion. Flipkart has already launched mixer cookware, backpacks & irons under the brand and will expand to other categories later this year. The brand is positioned as made-in-India & made-for-India both. It is being positioned as a value-for-money offering, indicating that it will be a budget brand

Indian shuttlers wins gold in Lagos

31 : Indian shuttler C Rahul Yadav and men’s doubles pair of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy clinched the men’s singles and men’s doubles title at Lagos International challenge in Nigeria. In the doubles, Manu and Sumeeth defeated local pair of Godwin Olofua and Anouluwapo Juwon Opeyori 21-13 21-15. 19-year-old Yadav defeated compatriot Karan Rajan Rajarajan 21-15, 21-13 in the men’s singles final

Snapdeal terminates talks for merger

Snapdeal has terminated talks for merger with Flipkart and said that it will pursue an independent path. Decision to end discussions with Flipkart marks a big win for Snapdeal founders Kunal and Rohit Bansal, both of whom were against the sale to Flipkart. The deal with Flipkart for $900-950 million, if it goes through, would mark the largest acquisition in the Indian e-commerce landscape.

CG Corp launches $100 million VC fund

Nepal’s CG Corp. Global along with 3 other partners has launched a $100 million venture capital fund to invest in start-ups in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh & Nepal. The fund is looking to invest in tech-enabled companies in sectors such as hospitality, financial services, rural product and services. It aims to invest in products & projects which will improve people’s lives on a large scale.

Morgan Stanley cuts CPI forecast

Global brokerage firm Morgan Stanley has lowered its inflation forecast for 2017 to 3.1% from 3.6% earlier citing relatively benign outcomes of GST & monsoon. Factors that led to revision of forecast were slippage in food inflation year-on-year bases and impact of GST & rise in HRA. For ongoing fiscal, it expects headline CPI at 3.2% from (4% earlier), for 2018-19 to 4.3% from 4.5 previously

Mission to uncover secrets of Zealandia

Scientists have set sail on a mission to uncover the secrets of “lost continent” of Zealandia. Zealandia, which is mostly submerged beneath the South Pacific, was once part of Gondwana super-continent but broke away some 75 million years ago. The drill ship JOIDES Resolution is undertaking 2 month expedition to Zealandia to better understand major changes in global tectonic configuration.

India to Become Biggest Milk Producer

According to a report by FAO & OECD, India is projected to become world’s biggest milk producer over the next decade. India tripled its output during the first quarter of 21st century. India’s milk output which was 160 million tonnes in 2016, is expected to reach 227 million tonnes by 2026. India’s milk output in 2026 would be 1/3rd higher than that of 2nd largest producer, European Union.

India finishes 6th in junior squash

India finished sixth overall in the girls team event of the 2017 WSF-World junior squash championship in Tauranga, New Zealand. In the match for the 5th-6th positions, India went down to USA 1-2. There was a slight improvement in the rankings this time as India had finished eighth in the last edition at the Netherlands.

AI solution for visually impaired

Accenture has developed an artificial intelligence powered solution to help visually impaired people improve the way they experience the world & enhance their productivity in workplace. Known as Drishti, It is a part of Accenture’s focus on Tech4Good, which aims to apply technology to improve the way world lives. Accenture plans to introduce it to 100+ visually impaired employees in India.

India wins FIBA Women’s Asia Cup

Indian women’s basketball team defeated Kazakhstan 75-73 in finals of FIBA Asia Cup 2017 held in Bengaluru. Both the undefeated league teams meet in finals for the first time in the tournament. With this win India are now promoted to Division A for the next edition of FIBA Women’s Asia Cup. Basketball Federation of India president Govindaraj announced a cash prize of Rs. 10 lakh for the squad.

29 cities vulnerable to earthquakes

According to National Centre for Seismology, 29 Indian cities & towns including Delhi & capitals of 9 states fall under severe to very severe seismic zones. Majority of these places are in Himalayas, one of the most seismically active regions in the world. BIS has classified different regions into zones II to V taking into consideration earthquake records, tectonic activities & damage caused

Jhulan Goswami to be felicitated

Mohun Bagan will confer former club captain and coach Subrata Bhattacharya and Indian Women’s cricket team veteran pacer Jhulan Goswami at the club’s annual day programme in Kolkata. Debabrata Das will get the best cricket player of the year award. The lifetime achievement award will be bestowed upon former Bengal batsman Shyam Sundar Mitra.

RBI to procure 50 note verifying machine

RBI is planning to buy 50 Currency Verification & Processing Systems for its regional offices for counting & authenticating banknotes of all denominations. Machine is proposed to be installed at its 18 regional offices throughout India. As per the Request for Proposal, machines should be computer based & microprocessor controlled having capacity to process at least 30 banknotes per second.

Indian govt cuts down on US lobbying

30 : Indian govt has slashed its expenses towards lobbying in the US with a total payment of $120,000 to its registered lobbyist firm in the second quarter of 2017. This is the first cut in nearly seven years. The disclosure has been made by BGR Government Affairs, which lobbied on behalf of Republic of India on issues relating to “bilateral US-India relations”.

Abbasi declared as interim Pakistan PM

The ruling Pakistan Muslim League has selected Minister for Petroleum & Natural Resources, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to be the interim prime minister of the country. Abbasi would serve as the chief executive of Pakistan for 45 days after which Nawaz Sharif brother Shahbaz Sharif will take over. Shahbaz cannot become prime minister right away as he is not a member of Pakistan’s parliament.

Book On ‘Mann Ki Baat’

Governor of Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu C. Vidyasagar Rao and Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis released the book ‘Mann Ki Baat – A Social Revolution on Radio’. The book, among other things, includes transcripts of the first 23 episodes of ‘Mann Ki Baat’. The book enables citizens to read and understand Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision and his ideas of development.

India to see launch of two moon missions

India will witness launch of 2 lunar missions from Indian soil early next year. ISRO will launch its Chandrayaan-2 mission, an advanced version of its previous 2018 mission with the objective of deeper lunar surface probe. The other mission is by Team Indus, a group of space enthusiasts who want to unfurl the tricolour on moon’s surface as part of a global lunar competition.

Women commission to ink pact with UNDP

Maharashtra’s women commission will ink an agreement with United Nations Development Programme for rescue & rehabilitation of women who are victims of sex trafficking, acid attack & domestic violence. Under the pact, one of the key areas would be to impart skills to the affected women to help them sustain themselves financially. An MoU with UNDP in this regard would be signed in next 15 days

Largest carmaker in world

With record profit and profitability in first half of the year the Renault-Nissan Alliance has overtaken Volkswagen & Toyota to become the largest carmaker in the world. The group sold 5,268,079 cars around the world, largely due to addition of Mitsubishi to the alliance’s stable last year. Its operation in Russia, which had been heavily loss-making, posted a profit of € 3 million.

World Day against Trafficking in Persons

The United Nations World Day against Trafficking in Persons is observed annually across the world on July 30. This year the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has chosen ‘act to protect and assist trafficked persons’ as the focus of the World Day. This day highlights importance of prevention of trafficking in persons and to protect victims, whether in ordinary time or in crisis.

Strong potential for digital payments

According to Digital Evolution Index 2017, India exhibits a high potential in terms of digital payments. India has been placed under “break out” segment among 60 countries. Break out segment refers to countries that have relatively lower absolute levels of digital advancement yet remain poised for growth. Index measures 4 key drivers – supply, demand, institutional environment & innovation

Charging Stations Installed in Bengaluru

Under Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles in India Scheme, 25 Charging Stations have been installed at 6 different locations in Bengaluru. These have been installed by M/s Mahindra REVA Electric Vehicles, as a pilot project. Based on the proposals received under FAME Scheme, charging infrastructure in selected locations would be sanctioned by Department of Heavy Industries

NABARD signs AMA with Green Climate Fund

NABARD has signed an Accreditation Master Agreement with Green Climate Fund. By signing this, NABARD became the 1st Indian organisation to get Direct Access Entity status & is the first step for the body to access GCF resources. GCF was setup in 2010 under UNFCCC’s financial mechanism to channel funding from developed countries to developing countries to allow them to mitigate climate change.

Lok Sabha passes IIM Bill, 2017

Lok Sabha has approved Indian Institutes of Management Bill 2017 that promises to grant administrative, academic and financial autonomy to the B-Schools and allow them to award degrees to their graduates. The bill will grant greater autonomy to these schools and ensure they are board-driven, with chairperson & director selected by board. The govt also agreed not to change the name of IIM-C.

Supervisory Colleges for Scheduled Banks

Reserve Bank of India has setup Supervisory Colleges for 6 Scheduled Commercial Banks which have sizeable international presence. The objectives of the colleges are to enhance information exchange and cooperation among supervisors and to improve understanding of the risk profile of the banking group. The Supervisory Colleges have been setup for SBI, PNB, BOB, BOI, ICICI and Axis Bank.

Bengaluru ranks 40

According to a report by Dell, Bengaluru ranks at the 40th spot among the top 50 global cities that foster high-potential women entrepreneurs. The only other Indian city in the top 50 tally is Delhi at the 49th spot. New York ranked topped the list, followed by Bay Area, London, Boston and Stockholm. Globally, women’s entrepreneurship rates are growing more than 10 per cent each year

Injection safety programme

Punjab has become the 1st state in the country to introduce injection safety programme. For this Punjab signed an agreement with Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics on World Hepatitis Day. It will support Punjab Health Department by providing Rapid test kits for screening of high risk patients. WHO & Health Department together will work in sensitising public regarding safe injections.

International Tiger Day

International Tiger Day is an annual celebration to raise awareness for tiger conservation, held annually on 29 July. It aims to promote a global system for protecting natural habitats of tigers and raise public support for tiger conservation issues. According to WWF there are only 3,890 tigers left in the world. Of them, India has the highest number. Till last year, India had 2,500 tigers.

Russia to Stay in Syria for 50 Years

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law ratifying a deal with Syrian govt to allow Russia to keep its airbase in Syria for almost half a century. Russian forces will be deployed at Hmeymim base for 49 years with the option of extending that arrangement for 25-year periods. Russia has previously used the base to conduct strikes against forces opposing President Bashar al-Assad.

Ban on liquid nitrogen in drinks, food

Haryana govt has banned mixing of liquid nitrogen in drinks & food, days after a man burnt a hole in his stomach after drinking a cocktail containing the chemical. Due to its low temperature liquid nitrogen can be extremely damaging to body tissue, causing cryogenic burning on contact. It releases large volume of gas on evaporation & can burst open the stomach if ingested in large quantities

Proposals for high-tech public transport

Niti Aayog has cleared 6 proposals of transport ministry exploring options to improve public transport. Mass rapid transportation technologies such as hyperloop, pod taxis, stadler buses, hybrid buses & freight rail road are part of transport ministry proposal. Transport ministry has formed a 6 member committee to study safety parameters associated with these technologies & global practices.

India’s first unmanned tank

India’s 1st unmanned tank developed by DRDO has been rolled out of the Chennai lab. Muntra has 3 variants – surveillance, mine detection & reconnaissance in areas with nuclear & bio threats. Muntra-S has been developed for unmanned surveillance missions, whereas Muntra-M is built for detecting mines. It’s surveillance radar has an integrated camera that can be used to spy on ground target.

Lovepreet Singh wins bronze

India’s Lovepreet Singh has won bronze medal in Asian Youth and Junior Weightlifting Championships at Kathmandu. He got third place in 105 kg men junior category. Lovepreet lifted 151 kgs in snatch and 180 kgs in clean and jerk to clinch the bronze medal. This is India’s fourth medal in the championships.

Sri Lanka, China sign $1.5 bn port deal

Sri Lanka’s govt has signed a long-delayed agreement to sell a 70% stake in the $1.5 billion Hambantota port to China. The Agreement has been signed in a bid to recover from the heavy burden of repayment of loans obtained to build the port. It is seen as part of Beijing’s so-called “string-of-pearls plan” for a line of ports stretching from its waters to the Persian Gulf.

India World’s 3rd biggest beef exporter

According to a report by FAO and OECD, India is the world’s 3rd biggest exporter of beef and is projected to hold on to that position over the next decade. India exported 1.56 million tonnes of beef last year and is expected to account for 16% of global exports in 2026 by exporting 1.93 tonnes that year. The Outlook report ranked Brazil as world’s top beef exporter, followed by Australia.

ICICI Pru to take over Sahara insurance

Insurance regulator IRDAI has asked ICICI Prudential Life Insurance to take over the business of Sahara India Life Insurance with effect from 31 July. ICICI Prudential shall ensure that systems are integrated within a period of one year from the appointed date. This is not a merger between the two companies but purely a transfer of customers to ICICI Prudential Life.

New dean of MIT’s engineering school

Anantha Chandrakasan an India-born academician at Massachusetts Institute of Technology has been named as the dean of its engineering school. He succeeded Ian Waitz who is now MIT’s vice chancellor. He had previously headed the MIT’s largest academic department, spearheading a number of initiatives that opened opportunities for students, postdocs, and faculty to conduct research.

South Korea to deploy 4 more THAAD units

South Korea will proceed with deployment of 4 additional Terminal High Altitude Area Defence units. This comes after North Korea’s latest launch of ICBM. Deployment of additional THAAD units had been delayed after South Korean President Moon Jae-in ordered an environmental assessment. THAAD is an American anti-ballistic missile defense system designed to shoot down ballistic missiles.

China produces gas from ‘flammable ice’

China has produced natural gas from methane hydrate, also known as flammable ice in an experimental project in South China Sea. A drilling platform deployed off the coast of Zhuhai for 60 days produced 309,000 m³ of natural gas. Flammable ice consists of methane trapped within water crystals, has been identified as a new gas source for China. Japan reported a similar production test in May.

Counter-terrorism meeting

Indonesia and Australia co-hosted a counter-terrorism meeting to address the rising threat of foreign fighters. The one-day gathering brought together 6 countries including Malaysia, Philippines and New Zealand. Ministers will discuss the challenges posed by growing terrorism in Southeast Asia as well as concerns that IS is trying establish a regional caliphate in Philippines.

J&K tops list on human rights violation

According to the data released by Union home ministry, Human rights violations under Armed Forces Special Powers Act are highest in Jammu & Kashmir, followed by Assam. 92 complaints against the Indian Army and paramilitary forces were registered in Jammu and Kashmir in 2016. AFSPA gives powers to Army & central forces deployed in disturbed areas to kill anyone acting in contravention of law.

Centre to set up petrochemical clusters

Centre is planning to set up petrochemical clusters in eastern, western & southern India to spur growth of the sector amid increasing demand. 2 petrochemical clusters will be setup in east & west coasts, and some in south India. They will be created to make the entire value chain extremely cost effective. India’s petrochemical market is valued at $50 billion and is expected to grow at 89%.

IOB goes live with Bharat Bill Payment

29 : Indian Overseas Bank has started to offer Bharat Bill Payment System for its customers. BBPS is an integrated bill payment system that offers inter-operable online bill payments to customers. The services include online payments of electricity, telecommunication, DTH, water and gas bills. IOB is one of the three public sector banks to get approval from RBI for providing the service.

PM launches deep-sea fishing scheme

Prime Minister Modi launched a deep-sea fishing scheme for fishermen of Rameswaram. Under the initiative taken up under the “Blue Revolution” scheme, centre would allocate Rs. 1,500 crore over a period of time for conversion of bottom trawling boats into deep sea liners. it would help fishermen to get better revenue and overcome problems of fishing in the Palk Strait.

PNB ties up with Bajaj Allianz General

Punjab National Bank & Bajaj Allianz General Insurance have signed an agreement for distribution of insurance products through branches. Under the agreement, Allianz will offer insurance products such as health, personal accident along with commercial products such as property to bank’s customers. Allianz will cater to PNB’s rural & semi rural customers with rural insurance products.

BRICS sign memorandum on taxation

Tax authorities of the five BRICS countries signed a landmark document to establish a mechanism for taxation cooperation. The authorities agreed to cooperate on taxation information exchange, improve consultation procedures efficiency and plan paths for coordination of taxation policies BRICS nations total share in global economy has risen from 12% to 23% in the past decade.

Launch of Satellite carrying Rocket

Iran has successfully launched a new type of rocket designed to carry a satellite into space. The “Simorgh” rocket is capable of carrying a 250 kg satellite as far as 500 km above Earth. Iran successfully launched its 1st domestically produced satellite in 2009. Launch of the rocket comes after US moved to increase economic sanctions placed on Iran over its ballistic missile program.

Sehwag & Usha in Arjuna Award committee

Virender Sehwag & P T Usha have been named in a 12-member Committee which has been handed the job to pick this year’s Khel Ratna & Arjuna awardees. Committee to be headed by Justice C K Thakkar, will meet on August 3 to select this year’s awardees. The Committee also includes Mukund Killekar (boxing), Sunil Dabbas (Kabaddi), M R Mishra (Journalist), S Kannan (Journalist) among other members.

Jeff Bezos becomes World’s Richest Man

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has overtaken Bill Gates as the richest person in the world, with a with a net worth of $90.6 billion. Bezos dethroned Gates, who has been the richest man on the planet since 2013, after a rise in the share price of Amazon ahead of its latest results. At the start of 2017, Bezos was ranked 4th-richest in the world, behind Gates, Warren Buffett and Amancio Ortega.

Samsung beats Intel

Samsung has surpassed Intel to become world’s largest maker of computer chips. Intel reported $14.8 billion in revenue in its 2nd quarter while Samsung’s chip division itself posted $16 billion in revenue. Samsung‘s chipsets are mostly consumed by smartphone market which is booming right now. Intel has been the leader in chipsets for 24 years now, ever since it entered the industry in 1993.

PV Sindhu as deputy collector

Olympics silver medallist PV Sindhu was appointed as the deputy collector, a Group-1 service post, in Andhra Pradesh govt. Chandrababu Naidu had promised a Group-I post to Sindhu when she won the silver medal in Olympics. The govt had also presented her a cash award worth Rs. 3 cr. She has been working with BPCL since 2013 & is currently an assistant manager (sports) at its Hyderabad office.

Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif resigns

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif resigned from his post, after the Supreme Court disqualified him over corruption claims against his family. Supreme Court said Sharif is not fit to hold office & ordered a criminal investigation into him & his family. Court also disqualified Finance Minister Ishaq Dar. Sharif has been disqualified for life & will not be able to contest elections again.

Delhi Metro first to become 100% ‘green’

Delhi Metro has become the only completely green Metro system in the world for adhering to green building norms for its residential colonies. Delhi Metro has secured platinum rating for adherence to green building norms for its 10 residential colonies from Indian Green Building Council. DMRC also announced that it is now generating 20 MW of solar power after adding new solar power facilities

Ajay Singh wins bronze medal

India’s Ajay Singh has won bronze medal in Asian Youth and Junior Weightlifting Championships at Kathmandu. He finished at the third spot in 77 kg men’s junior category after lifting 143 kg in snatch and 172 kg in clean and jerk. By Clinching this bronze medal, India now has 3 medals at the championships.

End to immediate arrests in dowry cases

Supreme Court has put an end to immediate arrest of the husband and his family members in the dowry harassment case. Police will now have to conduct a preliminary inquiry before making any arrest. The court’s latest order came as complaints piled up over the years alleging misuse of the anti-dowry harassment law framed in 1983 following a spate of dowry-related deaths by disgruntled wives.

Balloons to study total solar eclipse

NASA is collaborating with student teams across US to send balloons into the sky for eclipse observation which will help in understanding about life beyond Earth. NASA’s ‘Eclipse Balloon Project’ will send more than 50 high-altitude balloons that will livestream aerial footage of the total solar eclipse. It will provide insight into how bacterial life responds to Mars-like conditions.

UK to send aircraft carrier to China Sea

UK will send its 2 new aircraft carriers to freedom of navigation exercises in world’s busiest waters in South China Sea. It is aimed to demonstrate UK’s support for free navigation in international waters at a time when China is trying to claim the area as its own. Biggest warships ever commissioned by Royal Navy, HMS Queen Elizabeth & HMS Prince of Wales are being sent to South China Sea.

Diksha Dagar wins silver at Deaflympics

Indian golfer Diksha Dagar has won a silver medal in womens individual golf event of the Deaflympics. She got a bye in quarterfinals and then defeated Germany’s Gonzalez in semifinals to set up a final clash with Yost Kaylin. Diksha has been using a hearing aid since she was 6 & became the No.1 ranked junior in the country in amateur ranks. This is the 1st time golf is a part of Deaflympics.

World Hepatitis Day

World Hepatitis Day is observed on July 28 every year to create awareness about Hepatitis & minimize burden of hepatitis. Hepatitis is a viral infection which causes inflammation in liver. Hepatitis A, B, C & E are some of the common ones caused due to viruses. WHO estimates that 4 cr people in India live with chronic Hepatitis B. Theme for World Hepatitis Day 2017 is ‘Eliminate Hepatitis’.

Earthquake Parameter Dissemination app

Govt has launched 2 Mobile apps – ‘India Quake’ for dissemination of earthquake parameters and ‘Sagar Vani’ to disseminate ocean related information & alert users in timely manner. Developed by NCS, India Quake will automatically disseminate relevant parameter after occurrence of earthquakes. The app will make information dissemination faster with no restrictions on the number of recipients.

NPCI gets final nod from RBI

National Payments Corporation of India has received final authorisation from RBI to function as the Bharat Bill Payment Central Unit and operate the Bharat Bill Payment System. This initiative will provide a major push to digital payments as it is a big step forward in formalising the bill payment system in the country. Total number of BBPOU certified by NPCI now stands at 24.

AI system that can create 3D models

Scientists including one of Indian origin have developed new artificial intelligence software called SurfNet that can create three dimensional models from 2D photographs. When fully developed SurfNet could have significant applications in the fields of 3D searches on the internet researchers. In an advance version it can allow future robots to navigate in the real world.

ONGC wins government nod

28 : Oil and Natural Gas Corp has won govt approval for acquisition of Gujarat State Petroleum Corp’s entire 80% holding in a KG basin gas block for Rs. 7,738 crore. The company will also pay part consideration of USD 200 million to GSPC towards acquisition rights for discoveries other than DDW field in the block. The deal is likely to be closed within one month.

Hockey India League cancelled for 2018

The 6th edition of Hockey India League has been postponed to 2019 by Hockey India. This comes as the dates in 2018 clashes with the Indoor World Cup, which may bar foreign players’ participation in it. This will only be a temporary discontinuation and HIL will return in 2019. HIL in past 5 years has given rise to players who have gone on to make a name for themselves in world hockey.

Minimum wage across all sectors

Union Cabinet has approved new wage code bill which will ensure a minimum wage across all sectors by integrating 4 labour related laws. The bill seeks to empower Centre to set a minimum wage across all sectors in the country and states will have to maintain that. At present, the minimum wages fixed by the Centre and states are applicable to workers getting up to 18,000 rupees pay monthly.

First Mars simulation base

China plans to build its 1st Mars simulation base on Tibetan plateau in country’s northwest as it aims to send the 1st mission to the red planet by 2020. The project will incorporate education, tourism, scientific research & simulation training. China looks to catch up with India, US, Russia & EU in sending probes to Mars. The base might also include a set for shooting films and TV shows.

IRCTC to take over catering services

According to railways, Catering services in all trains with pantry cars will be handed over to IRCTC by the year-end. Till now, zonal railways were managing catering services in majority trains as per the catering policy 2010. This is being done in order to improve onboard food quality. Railways will also conduct 3rd party audit at pantry cars & base kitchens to ensure best practice.

Axis Bank set to buy Freecharge

Axis Bank has entered into an agreement to acquire payments wallet FreeCharge for Rs. 385 crore in an all-cash deal. By buying Freecharge, Axis Bank will get a popular digital payments brand as well as access to high-quality technology. FreeCharge presently has a revenue of about Rs. 80 cr. Snapdeal bought Freecharge for $400 million in 2015 in what was then the largest start-up deal in India

‘Apni Gaddi Apni Rozgar’ scheme

Punjab govt has announced launch of ‘Apni Gaddi Apna Rozgar’ scheme by flagging off over 100 uberMOTO bikes. Under the scheme state govt will be providing commercial two wheelers & four wheelers to unemployed youth at subsidised rates. It will not only contribute towards improving last-mile connectivity but will also create thousands of economic opportunities for youth in the state.

Garg appointed on ADB Board of Governors

Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg has been appointed as Indias Alternate Governor on the Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank. Garg has been appointed in place of former DEA Secretary Shaktikanta Das. The appointment came into effect from July 12 ADB is headquartered in Manila, in the Philippines.

Dharam Singh passes away

N. Dharam Singh, former Chief Minister of Karnataka, passed away at a private hospital in Bengaluru after a heart attack. He was the 17th CM of Karnataka and was continuously elected as MLA for 7 times from Jevargi constituency. He headed Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition govt from May 2004 to February 2006. He was a seasoned politician, was known for his gentle demeanour.

BSE signs MoU with Egyptian Exchange

Bombay Stock Exchange has joined hands with Egyptian Exchange for cooperation in exchange of information across business areas. Exchanges aims to cross list & trade securities to provide new investment alternatives to investors in both markets. Exchanges signed a MoU through which they have created several opportunities to be studied & explored for development of their products & markets.

Facebook Acquires Source3

Facebook has acquired Source3 to crack down on users who share pirated videos & other content without permission. Facebook is acquiring both technology & some of the team behind Source3. Source3’s approach is similar to YouTube’s Content ID content-flagging system that not only identify material that infringes copyright but also provide ways for content owners to make money from UGC.

PM Modi inaugurates Kalam’s memorial

Prime Minister Modi inaugurated a memorial dedicated to former president A P J Abdul Kalam at Peikarumbu on his 2nd death anniversary. With ‘unity in diversity’ as its theme, memorial features quotes of Kalam and his pictures as a scientist and as the president of the country. Resembling the arch of India Gate, memorial has on display replica of rockets & missiles on which Kalam had worked.

India’s 1st mobile ticketing system

Mumbai Metro One will soon launch India’s first mobile ticketing system ‘OnGo’ for commuters to buy their tickets on their mobile phones. Through ‘OnGo’, commuters can purchase tickets on the Mumbai Metro app and other partner apps like Ridlr. A QR code will be generated that will have to be displayed before a non-protruding glass at the Automatic Fare Collection gates.

Ajit Doval arrives in Beijing

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval arrived in Beijing to attend 2 day BRICS NSAs meeting. The group of NSAs would call on the Chinese president for an interaction on security issues relating to BRICS countries. The visit comes in the backdrop of ongoing standoff between India & China in the Doklam region. China currently holds Presidency of BRICS & is due to hold 2017 summit in September.

Arundhati’s novel in Man Booker longlist

Arundhati Roy’s latest work of fiction, “The Ministry of Utmost Happiness”, has made it to the longlist of this year’s Man Booker Prize. The book came after a 19-year-long hiatus since her debut novel “God of Small Things” that won the Booker Prize in 1997. The shortlist of six books will be announced on September 13, and the 2017 winner will be finally announced on October 17.

1 billion daily users worldwide

WhatsApp has announced that it has reached 1 billion daily active users who transfer over 55 billion messages and one billion videos everyday. Monthly active users of WhatsApp are over 1.3 billion & supports 60 languages globally. Introduction of video call, Status 2 step verification security has helped WhatsApp attract more users since last year when it had 1 billion monthly active users.

Bajaj Allianz renews corporate agreement

27 : Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance has renewed corporate agency agreement with Dhanlaxmi Bank. Under the agreement, Dhanlaxmi will continue to sell life insurance products of Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance. As a corporate agent partner, Dhanlaxmi has done a business of Rs. 365 Cr till date for Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance. Relationship b/w Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance & Dhanlaxmi goes back to 2009.

Nitish Kumar sworn-in as Bihar CM

JDU leader Nitish Kumar was sworn in as Bihar Chief Minister for 6th time within hours of dumping the Grand Alliance. Kumar met governor Keshari Tripathi with NDA leaders & staked claim to form a new government with support of 132 MLAs. He has been asked by governor to prove his majority in Assembly within 2 days of taking oath. BJP’s Sushil Kumar Modi was sworn in as Deputy Chief Minister.

Axis Bank extends Shikha Sharma’s term

Axis Bank has re-appointed Shikha Sharma as its chief executive officer and managing director. Sharma’s re-appointment is for a period of 3 years & is effective 1st June 2018. Recently it was reported that Sharma was headed to Tata Group to head its financial services business which was later denied by the bank. She has more than 3 decades of experience in the financial sector.

Insolvency action against Bhushan Steel

National Company Law Tribunal has allowed banks to initiate insolvency proceedings against Bhushan Steel, Bhushan Steel and Power. Petition for launching the insolvency process was filed by SBI in case of Bhushan Steel while a similar plea was filed by PNB against Bhushan Steel & Power. SBI has claimed recovery of Rs. 4,295 cr from Bhushan Steel & $490 million for foreign currency loan.

India to be 2nd largest 4G phone base

According to a report by Counterpoint, with an estimated installed base of 340 million 4G devices, India will displace the US as the second largest market by next year. With a base of 150 million users, India is currently placed behind China and the US. Indian market is expected to grow at a faster pace, driven by increasing adoption of mobile Internet.