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Important Current Affairs 15th July

AGREEMENTS AND MOU'S:

Lok Sabha passes bill to strengthen anti-terror agency NIA.

• The Lok Sabha on Monday passed the National Investigation Agency (Amendment) Bill 2019

• The bill had been passed with 278 members voting in its favour and six against it

• It also seeks to strengthen the powers of NIA in cases involving explosives and the responsibility in cases of human trafficking will be given to the investigation agency.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

SP leader Neeraj Shekhar resigns as Rajya Sabha member.

• Samajwadi Party leader Neeraj Shekhar on Monday resigned as member of the Rajya Sabha and his resignation was accepted by Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu

• Shekhar, the son of former prime minister Chandra Shekhar, met Naidu and told him he is resigning voluntarily and not under any compulsion

• He had been a member of the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh since November 26, 2014, and was due to retire on November 25, 2020

Kalraj Mishra appointed Himachal Pradesh Governor.

• Senior BJP leader Kalraj Mishra was Monday appointed as the Governor of Himachal Pradesh

• replacing Acharya Devvrat, who has been transferred and appointed as the Governor of Gujarat.

• the appointments of Mishra and Devvrat will come into effect from the dates they assume charge of their respective offices.

Former leader of opposition Chandrakant Kavlekar has been appointed as the deputy chief minister of Goa.

• Former leader of opposition Chandrakant Kavlekar has been appointed as the deputy chief minister of Goa. He sworn in as DCM on 15 July. He is among the four legislators inducted into the Goa cabinet.

The appointment came days after 10 Congress MLAs in Goa joined the BJP. Mr.Sawant reshuffled the Goa cabinet on 13 July. Three members of the ally, Deputy Chief Minister Vijai Sardesai, Water Resources Minister Vinod Palyekar, Rural Development Minister Jayesh Salgaonkar and Independent MLA and Revenue Minister Rohan Khaunte, were dropped to accommodate the new members to the cabinate. The monsoon session of the Goa state Assembly began on 15 July.

Chandrakant Kavlekar:

Kavlekar is also known as Chandrakant 'Babu' Kavlekar. He is an Indian Politician from the state of Goa. He is a four term member of the Goa Legislative Assembly. On 11 July 2019 he left Indian National Congress and joined Bharatiya Janata Party.

SPORTS:

England win World Cup for first time for hitting more boundaries.

• England  won the World Cup for the first time due to hitting more boundaries after tied scores in World Cup history's first-ever Super Over forced a boundary count-back. The match went into Super Over wherein both the teams scored 15 each after hitting 241 runs apiece in their respective 50 overs. England scored 26 boundaries while New Zealand hit 17.

Sprinter Hima Das wins 3rd international gold.

• Sprinter Hima Das bagged her third international gold in two weeks after winning the women’s 200m event at the Kladno Memorial Athletics Meet in Czech Republic. Das clocked 23.43 seconds to win the event. Muhammed Anas also won gold in the men’s 400m event after clocking 45.21 seconds to finish first.

AWARDS:

SRK to be awarded honorary doctorate at Indian Film Fest of Melbourne.

• Australian University La Trobe will award actor Shah Rukh Khan with an honorary doctorate at the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne on August 9. It's the first Australian University to award Khan with an Honorary Doctor of Letters

Padma Shri awardee Raghu Ram receives FRCS of Thailand.

• Popular breast surgeon and Padma Shri awardee P.Raghu Ram bagged with Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS) of Thailand

The function held at the 44th annual congress of the Royal College in Pattaya

The theme of the function is  “ASEAN collaboration in value-based surgery”.

The highest recognition got by the Institute in recognition of  Raghu Ram’s bold vision coupled with an intense body of work

It paved towards significantly improving the delivery of breast healthcare in India. It helps in the recognition of his contribution in promoting the highest standards of surgical education in India through his association with the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and England.

It was conferred by professor Tanaphon Maipang, the President of the Royal College of Surgeons of Thailand.

Raghu Ram achieved the rare distinction conferred FRCS from six Royal Colleges include London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Ireland, and Thailand & from the American College of Surgeons.

In 1995, he qualified to become a surgeon and he had 24 years of experience.

He also created awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer.

About Thailand:

♦ Capital: Bangkok

♦ Prime Minister: Prayut Chan-o-cha

Kaushik Gangulys Bengali film Nagarkirtan bags 4 awards including Best Feature Film at SAARC film festival 2019.

• The 9th edition of the SAARC( South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) festival 2019 in Colombo, Srilanka.

Bengali filmmaker Kaushik Ganguly’s film ‘Nagarkirtan’ won four awards (Best Director’, ‘Best Actor’ and ‘Best Original Score’) including ‘Best Feature Film’ at the festival.

The Best Actor award bagged to Riddhi Sen.

The Two other Indian films have won awards at the fest.

‘Na Bole Wo Haram’ bagged the ‘Best Short Film’ award directed by Nitish Patankar, while ‘Walking With the Wind’ received the Special Jury award directed by Praveen Morchhale.

About SAARC:

The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) is an economic and geopolitical organization of eight countries.

They are primarily located in South Asia.

It is established on 8 December 1985.

Main Objectives: To promote and strengthen collective self-reliance among the countries of South Asia to contribute to developing mutual trust, understanding, and appreciation of one another’s a problem.

The member states include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

The Secretariat of the SAARC is in Kathmandu, Nepal

It is established on 16 January 1987.

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Important Current Affairs of 14th July

AGREEMENTS AND MOU’s:

India, US agree to address mutual trade concerns.

• India and the United States have agreed to further grow their economic relationship and address mutual trade concerns.

A US delegation led by Assistant Trade Representative Christopher Wilson held bilateral talks with a team of Indian officials headed by Additional Secretary, Department of Commerce.

The two sides discussed the broad contours of bilateral trade and commercial ties and agreed to continue discussions for achieving mutually beneficial outcomes.

The meeting was aimed at providing a new impetus to bilateral trade and commercial ties. It was in line with the mandate given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump during their meeting at Osaka in Japan last month on the sidelines of the G-20 summit.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

BL Santosh appointed BJP’s national general secretary of organisation.

• BJP president Amit Shah Sunday elevated party’s joint general secretary (organisation) B L Santosh as its general secretary (organisation)

• Santosh, an RSS ‘pracharak’ with experience of electoral politics, especially in Karnataka.

• Santosh was the party’s general secretary (organisation) for eight years in Karnataka before he was made a national office bearer in charge of southern states in 2014.

SPORTS:

Williamson registers most runs by a captain in a World Cup edition.

• New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson has set the record for most runs by a captain in World Cup history. The 28-year-old took his tally of runs in 2019 World Cup to 549 after opening his account against England in the final on Sunday, breaking the record set by Sri Lanka's Mahela Jayawardene, who aggregated 548 runs in 2007 World Cup.

Mexico wins CONCACAF Gold Cup final.

• Mexico defeated USA to claim their eighth CONCACAF Gold Cup title.

Jonathan Dos Santos scored the winning goal in 73rd min for Mexico in the thrilling final.

The teams met five previous times in the Gold Cup final, but this year’s edition held additional value:

The Americans had a chance to reestablish confidence in a program haunted by its failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

Mexico looked like the more dangerous team in the second half.

They finally broke through in the 73rd minutes.

Jonathan dos Santos scored off a back-heel pass from Raul Jimenez fountains of beer to fly upward in the pro-Mexico crowd.

The Americans created scoring opportunities early one of the positive trends through the tournament.

About CONCACAF

Founded    1963

Region    North America, Central America and the Caribbean(CONCACAF)

Number of teams    16

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Important Current Affairs of 12th July

NATIONAL:

ICSI launches UDIN to improve corporate governance

• Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI) rolled out an initiative in the form of a Unique Document Identification Number (UDIN)

• The main aim is to pursue a heightened sense of self-governance and strengthen the practicing side of company secretaries.

• UDIN will provide ease of maintaining a register of attestation and certification services. The ICSI functions under the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.

The second edition of India-Russia Strategic Economic Dialogue 2019 held in New Delhi

• The second India-Russia Strategic Economic Dialogue (IRSED) 2019 held

The function was held in New Delhi.

• Aim: The bilateral cooperation between the two countries.The various fields was chaired by Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman of India’s think tank, National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog, and Russia’s Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Timur Maksimov.

• The main areas of cooperation include Development of transport infrastructure and technologies Development of agriculture and agro-Processing sector Small and Medium business support Digital Transformation and Frontier Technologies Cooperation in Trade, Banking, Finance, and Industry Tourism & Connectivity.

INTERNATIONAL:

Airtel Africa has been listed as the third-largest stock on the bourse by market value

• Airtel Africa has been listed as the third-largest stock on the bourse by market value. On 9 June, Nigerian Stock Exchange reported that the Airtel Africa has a 1.36 trillion naira ($4.4 bn) flotation. Airtel Africa operates across 14 African countries.

• The listing comes after Airtel's main rival, South Africa’s MTN, listed its Nigerian unit in Lagos in May in a $6.5 billion float.  South Africa’s MTN is in the second-largest stock on the bourse by market value.

• The shares of Airtel Africa climbed 10% from their listing price of 363 naira after the float went live. The company, owned 68.3% by India’s Bharti Airtel, offered shares in its African unit via a London IPO and dual list in Nigeria.

AWARDS AND ACHIEVEMENTS:

NASA awarded Imaging Xray polarimetry explorer (IXPE) mission to SpaceX

• NASAhas awarded a contract to SpaceX to launch NASA’s Imaging Xray polarimetry explorer (IXPE) mission,a groundbreaking astrophysics mission. The mission aims to uncover the mysteries behind black holes and neutron stars.

The cost estimated for the mission is $50.3 million. The mission plans to launch three space telescopes. These telescopes will be capable of analyzing the polarization of cosmic X-rays. The IXPE mission is expected to be launched from the Kennedy Space Centre in April 2021.

About IXPE:

The Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) will get information regarding thepolarization state of light from astrophysical sources. This will provide insight into the X-ray production in objects such as neutron stars and pulsar wind nebulae, as well as stellar and supermassive black holes.

The launch mass of IXPE is 320 kilograms. IXPE will be launched over SpaceX FALCON 9 which is capable of launching 22,800 kilograms to low Earth orbit (LEO).There will also be excess payload capacity at launch.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATION:

MN Rao appointed DG of Fire Services, Civil Defence and Home Guard

• The central government appointed M Nageswar Rao, Additional Director of CBI as the Director General of Fire Services, Civil Defence and Home Guard. He will continue to hold the post till superannuation in July 2020.

• He will replace former CBI Chief Alok Verma.The Supreme Court held Rao guilty of Contempt of Court for transferring the investigating officer heading the probe in Muzaffarpur shelter home case in violation of the orders of Apex Court.

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Important Current Affairs of 11th July

NATIONAL:

Govt initiates proposal to establish first National Police University.

• Centre today said it has initiated a proposal to establish the first National Police University in the country.

It will be dedicated to imparting education in policing and internal security.

In a written reply in Lok Sabha the Minister of State for Home Affairs, G. Kishan Reddy said the university will conduct undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate academic programmes in specialized subjects.

He said Gujarat, Rajasthan and Jharkhand have set up dedicated universities for conducting courses in police services and internal security.

Prasar Bharati signs MoU with IIT Kanpur for research collaboration in newly emerging technologies.

• Prasar Bharati and Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur today signed a Memorandum of Understanding for research collaboration in newly emerging technologies and broadcasting-related areas in New Delhi.

• The move is likely to boost research activities in the broadcasting field. Chief Executive Officer of Prasar Bharati Shashi Shekhar Vempati and Director, IIT Kanpur Abhay Karandikar were present at this juncture.

• Direct to mobile broadcasting, Convergence of 5G, Artificial Intelligence Incubation Centre by Prasar Bharati and student internship for students of IIT, Kanpur at Prasar Bharati are among the main areas in the research collaboration.

• Speaking on the occasion, Mr Vempati said, this engagement with IIT, Kanpur on Research and Development and innovation are very important as it is the onus of the largest public broadcaster to actively look to the future, develop and shape the future with emerging technologies.

The MoU will be effective from today and remain in force for a period of five years. The institutes may extend the term in writing through mutual agreement.

AGREEMENTS AND MOU’S:

Homegrown VNL to build digital villages in Vietnam.

• VNL has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Vietnam, to provide solutions for advancing rural connectivity by creating Digital Villages in Vietnam’s underserved areas,” the Gurugram-based company in a statement said.

• The development comes on the back of India’s efforts to provide digital connectivity in CLMV countries namely Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.

The Indian companies are eying the Southeast Asia region for their business expansion with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government sharing strategic ties for developmental initiatives with the countries.

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

Oriental Bank of Commerce bank cuts MCLR rate upto 10 bps.

• Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC) has reduced the marginal cost of funds-based lending rate (MCLR) by up to 10 basis points (bps) for various tenors. It is effective from 11 July 2019. MCLR for overnight has been reduced to 8.20% from 8.30% and one-month loan tenor has been reduced by 10 bps from 8.35% to 8.25%.

Similarly, MCLR has been decreased by 5 bps for:

1) three-month loan to 8.45%

2) six-month loan to 8.55%

3) one-year tenor loans to 8.65%.

Previosly, the MCLR for three-month, six-month and one-year tenor loans were at 8.50% , 8.60% and 8.70%, respectively.

RBI's announcement:

The move comes after the announcement of RBI's Governor Shaktikanta Das who said that RBI expects faster transmission of the three successive repo rate cuts totalling 75 basis points.

In June the RBI announced 25 bps repo rate cut in the Monetary Policy review. It is expected to reduce still, in the next meeting of the monetary policy committee which is scheduled for 5-9 August.

Other banks reduces MCLR:

The State Bank of India had lowered its MCLR by 5 basis points across all tenors on 9 July 2019.

In June RBI announced rate cut in Monetary Policy review. After the announcement, Bank of Maharashtra, Corporation Bank and IDBI Bank had reduced their MCLR by 5-10 bps in the month of May 2019.

MCLR:

MCLR is abbreviated as Marginal Cost of funds based Lending Rate

MCLR refers to the minimum interest rate of a bank below which it cannot lend, except in some cases allowed by the RBI. MCLR is the reference rate or an internal benchmark set by and for the bank.

Oriental Bank of Commerce:

Founded on: 19 February 1943

Headquarters: Gurugram, India

MD & CEO: Mukesh Kumar Jain

Total assets: ₹237,541.54 crore

The Bank has around 2700 branches and 2621 ATMs across India.  It is one of the promising public sector banks (PSBs) in India.

DAYS:

World Population Day 11 July.

• World Population Day, which seeks to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population issues, was established by the then-Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme in 1989, an outgrowth of the interest generated by the Day of Five Billion, which was observed on 11 July 1987.

• This year's World Population Day calls for global attention to the unfinished business of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development. Twenty-five years have passed since that landmark conference, where 179 governments recognized that reproductive health and gender equality are essential for achieving sustainable development.

• In November, UNFPA, together with the governments of Kenya and Denmark, will be convening a high-level conference in Nairobi to accelerate efforts to achieve these unmet goals. On World Population Day, advocates from around the world are calling on leaders, policymakers, grassroots organizers, institutions and others to help make reproductive health and rights a reality for all.

Why Do We Mark International Days?

• International days are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity. The existence of international days predates the establishment of the United Nations, but the UN has embraced them as a powerful advocacy tool.

AWARDS:

Smith Nephew's NAVIO Honored at the Economic Times Best Healthcare Brands 2019.

• NAVIO, a robotics-assisted surgery system from Smith & Nephew, a Global medical technology provider, has recently been felicitated at the prestigious 'The Economic Times Best Healthcare Brands 2019' at a glittering ceremony held in the capital of India recently. This coveted and one of the most prestigious awards in India honors brands which have shown robust growth by high customer satisfaction in the healthcare sector. The recognition was based of an extensive research carried out by the Economic Times, the business publication of the Times of India Group.

• NAVIO surgical system has been designed to aid Indian surgeons with implant alignment, ligament balancing and bone preparations which are the key factors for patient satisfaction. While conventional knee replacement surgery is highly successful, incidences of improperly installed replacement parts are not uncommon. To improve outcomes, Indian surgeons are now using the NAVIO robotic-assisted total knee replacement surgery and it has shown to be extremely effective for partial and total knee replacement surgery and resulting in improved functional outcomes for the patient. NAVIO enables the surgeon to fix only the damaged part of the knee to absolute perfection, saving all the other normal structures of the joint.

SPORTS:

Commonwealth C'ships: Rakhi Halder, Davinder Kaur win gold medals on second day.

• Rakhi Halder and Davinder Kaur won a gold medal each in the senior women's section as Indian weightlifters continued their impressive show on the second day of the Commonwealth Championships in Apia Samoa today.

India also won five other gold medals in the junior and youth sections.

The Commonwealth Championships are being held simultaneously together for the youth, junior and senior categories.

Kaur lifted a total of 184kg  to win the women's 59kg gold while Halder clinched the yellow metal with a combined effort of 214kg  in the  64kg category.

On the first day yesterday, India had clinched 8 gold, 3 silver and 2 bronze medals. Former world champion Mirabai Chanu had clinched the gold in women's 49kg with a total lift of 191kg.

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Important Current Affairs 3rd July

NATIONAL:

India seeks to buy $2.2 billion warships to meet China challenge .

• India sought bids for purchase of warships and support vessels for its navy and coast guard as it ramps up security of its maritime border in the Indian Ocean region.

• The shipbuilders invited include private shipyards Larsen & Toubro Ltd. and Reliance Naval & Engineering Ltd., apart from the state-run Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd., Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Ltd., Goa Shipyard Ltd., Hindustan Shipyard Ltd. and Cochin ShipyardNSE 0.10 % Ltd., people with knowledge of the matter said. They asked not to be identified citing rules.

INTERNATIONAL:

Zimbabwe runs out of passports amid economic crisis.

• Zimbabwe has run out of passports as the country has no adequate funds to pay for special imported paper, ink and other raw materials required to print the passports. Citizens seeking to apply for a passport face a minimum wait time of 18 months. Zimbabwe is facing its worst economic crisis in over a decade, with inflation at almost 100%.

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

Ola Electric invests $250million funding from SoftBank.

• SoftBank invested around $250 million in Ola Electric Mobility.

The electric vehicle unit Ola becomes the newest unicorn from India. The likes of Flipkart, Zomato, Paytm in the parent company are with the Registrar of Companies.

Ola Electric issued 4,326 fully and compulsorily convertible series B preference shares of face value of Rs 10 each having the privileges and preferences.

Japanese investor paid a total of Rs 1,725.04 crore (around $250 million)

The SoftBank funding was received on Tuesday in light of a special resolution passed by the board of Ola Electric on June 25.

Tata Sons' Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata invested an undisclosed amount in Ola Electric.

This investment is a part of company's series-A round of funding, was in Ratan Tata's personal capacity.

Ola Electric announced raising Rs 400 crore in a funding round

This is led by Tiger Global and Matrix India.

Ola raised $300 million from South Korean carmaker Hyundai Motors along with its affiliate Kia Motors.

As part of the deal, Hyundai plans to introduce its EVs in the cab fleet of Ola by 2021.

Ola Electric is currently running several pilots to deploy electric vehicles and charging solutions.

The company claimed they would introduce a fleet of 10,000 electric vehicles over the next year.

Ola Electric initially established to enable Ola's electric mobility pilot program in Nagpur in 2017.

Airtel Payments Bank ties up with Bharti AXA Life to sell term insurance.

• India's first payments bank Airtel Payments Bank has partnered with Bharti AXA Life Insurance to offer a life term insurance plan through its extensive network of banking points across the country.

• The product, Bharti AXA Life POS (Point of Sale) Saral Jeevan Bima Yojana, is a pure life term insurance plan which is aimed at the under-insured and uninsured segments in India. Both the partners will leverage vast network to reach deep rural pockets and serve the under-insured.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

TSSOCA chief is new ISTA vice-president.

• Director of Telangana State Seed and Organic Certification Authority (TSSOCA) K. Keshavulu was elected vice president of International Seed Testing Association (ISTA), the body that regulates seed certification at the global level, during the ongoing 32nd ISTA Congress being held here.

• He is not only the first Indian but also first from any Asian country to hold one of the top executive posts in ISTA. Mr. Keshavulu is also tipped to be elected as the next president of ISTA at its 33rd Congress to be held in New Zealand in 2022 as is the practice in the organisation. He will hold the vice president’s post for a three-year term.

• teve Jones of Canada, who has been the vice president till the election of the new executive body on Tuesday, has been elected president for the 2019-22 term. The new committee will also have immediate past president Craig McGill of New Zealand and eight others as members at Large representing Zimbabwe, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Philippines, Finland and Argentina.

SPORTS:

World Cup 2019: Ambati Rayudu retires from International cricket, Iceland Cricket’s special offer to Rayudu.

• Ambati Rayudu retires from International Cricket. Rayudu made the announcement after the Indian cricket team management repeatedly ignored him in the ongoing world cup. Ambati Rayudu was named as one of the five stand-bys for the Indian world cup squad but he was snubbed twice, after the Indian selectors preferred Rishabh Pant and Mayank Agarwal over him.

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Important Current Affairs of 18th June

NATIONAL:

India to host COP-14 of UNCCD.

• India will be hosting the 14th session of the Conference of Parties (COP-14) of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) for the first time. COP-14 will be held between September 2 and 14 in Delhi.

Participants: It is expected that atleast 5,000 delegates from nearly 197 countries will be participating.

• The Centre launched a flagship project, part of a larger international initiative called the Bonn Challenge ahead of the COP-14. The flagship project aims to enhance India’s capacity for forest landscape restoration (FLR).

• The Bonn Challenge is a global effort to bring 150 million hectares of the world’s deforested and degraded land under restoration by 2020, and 350 million hectares by 2030.

COP-13 of UNCCD:

• The 13th session of the Conference of Parties (COP-13) of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) was held in Ordos, China. Around 113 countries had agreed to specify concrete targets with clear indicators, to rehabilitate more land and reverse degradation, which currently affects over a third of the world’s land resources.

United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD):

Drafted: 17 June 1994

Signed: 14 October 1994

Location: Bonn, Germany

Parties: 197 (196 states + the European Union)

UNCCD aims to combat desertification and mitigate the effects of drought through national action programs that incorporate long-term strategies supported by international cooperation and partnership arrangements.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed is appointed as Pakistans Director General of Inter-Services Intelligence.

• Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed has been appointed as Pakistan’s Director General of Inter-Services Intelligence (DG-ISI), a powerful spy agency. He assumed his office on 17th June 2019.The Pakistan Army also announced a number of changes to postings of its top generals.

Lt. Gen. Hameed was appointed as Director-General of the ISI in place of Lieutenant General Asim Munir. Munir was transferred and appointed as Corps Commander Gujranwala. Lt. Gen. Munir was appointed as ISI chief in October 2018 after the retirement of his predecessor Lt. Gen. Naveed Mukhtar.

Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed:

• Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed is a three-star rank general in the Pakistan Army. He is currently the 24th Director-General of Inter-Services Intelligence (DG-ISI).

• On April 12, the Pakistan Army promoted then Major General Hameed to the rank of Lieutenant General and appointed him Adjutant General at the General Headquarters (GHQ) later that month.

He was previously serving as the head of the Counter Intelligence wing in the ISI.

Indiabulls Housing appoints Chief Risk Officer after new rules.

• Indiabulls Housing Finance on Monday said it has named Naveen Uppal as Chief Risk Officer to comply with regulator National Housing Bank's direction. Uppal has been associated with Indiabulls Housing Finance for 12 years and presently heads Risk and Compliance. He'll directly report to the company's Vice-Chairman, MD and CEO or the board-constituted risk management committee of the company.

Paytm Mall names Rudra Dalmia as Exec Director, Board member.

• Paytm Mall has named Rudra Dalmia as the Executive Director and also appointed him to its board. Dalmia is an SRCC alumnus and has an MBA from Cornell University's Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management. "I welcome [Dalmia] to Paytm family...am proud to see him as a board member of Paytm e-commerce," Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma said.

SPORTS:

Eoin Morgan breaks world record for hitting most sixes in an ODI.

• England captain Eoin Morgan set the world record for most sixes (17) in an ODI, achieving the feat during his 71-ball 148-run knock against Afghanistan in World Cup today. The previous record (16 sixes) was jointly held by Rohit Sharma, Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers. Morgan also smashed the fastest World Cup hundred by an England player (57 balls).

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Important Current Affairs 12th June

NATIONAL:

GST council to introduce new GST return system.

• GST Council decided to introduce a new GST return system to facilitate taxpayers.

The new plan is worked out to ease the transition to the new return system.

•  A prototype of the offline tool has already been shared on the common portal to give the look and feel of the tool to the users.

The tool is the same as that of the online portal.

There are three main components to the new return

one main return (FORM GST RET-1) and two annexures (FORM GST ANX-1 and FORM GST ANX-2).

The new return system (ANX-1 & ANX-2 only) will be available for trial for taxpayers to make themselves familiar.

About GST Council

•  GST Council decided to introduce a new GST return system to facilitate taxpayers.

A plan has been worked out to ease the transition to the new return system.

A prototype of the offline tool already shared on the common portal to give the look and feel of the tool to the users.

Cabinet approved the setting up of Defence Space Research Agency (DSRO).

• The Cabinet Committee on Security headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the setting up of Defence Space Research Agency (DSRO), a new agency, which will develop sophisticated weapon systems. The approval aimed to To enhance the capabilities of the armed forces to fight wars in space.

Members of DSRO:

The agency will be headed by a Joint Secretary-level scientist. DSRO would constitute a team of scientists which would be working in close coordination with the tri-services integrated Defence staff officers.

Functions of DSRO:

DSRO will be entrusted with the task of creating space warfare weapon systems and technologies.

It would provide the research and development support to the Defence Space Agency (DSA).

About DSA:

Defence Space Agency (DSA)will constitute of members from the three services. The aim of setting up of DSA is to help the country fight wars in the space.

DSA is being set up under an Air Vice Marshal-rank officer in Bengaluru. It will be gradually taking over the space-related capabilities of the three forces.

ICAT released India’s 1st BS VI Certificate in Two Wheeler Segment.

• International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) released India’s first Type Approval Certificate (TAC) for Bharat Stage - VI (BS – VI) norms for the two-wheeler segment in New Delhi.

The certificate released and handed over by Director ICAT, Dinesh Tyagi to top officials of the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturers). India’s first certification in the two-wheeler segment for the BS – VI

• They are the latest emission norms as notified by the Government of India.

• Norms of the ICAT - India’s 1st BS – VI Certificate in Two Wheeler Segment

The ICAT drive through many steps in providing assistance and support to the automotive industry for the development, optimization and calibration of engines and vehicles for complying with these upcoming emission norms.Bharat Stage norms are the automotive emission norms which the automotive manufacturers have to comply to sell their vehicles in India.

The norms are applicable to all two wheelers, three wheelers, four wheelers.

The Government of India decided to leapfrog from the exiting BS – IV norms to the BS- VI, thereby skipping the BS – V norms.

They are to be effective from 1st April 2020.

The vehicles will be sold and registered in India from 1st April 2020 onwards which comply to these norms. The norms are stringent and at par with global standards.I issued the approval for BS –VI norms to M/s Volvo Eicher Commercial Vehicles for the Heavy Commercial Vehicle segment. It is the first in its segment in India.

About ICAT

It is the testing agency authorized by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways for providing testing and certification services to vehicle and the components vehicles in India.

It has the latest equipment, facilities, and capabilities to develop, validate, test and certify the engines and vehicles for the latest norms in the field of emission and many other facilities like crash lab, NVH lab, EMC lab and test tracks.

INTERNATIONAL:

Amazon clinches top spot in the world's most valuable brand ranking.

• Amazon clinched the world’s most valuable brand in cloud computing, consumer tech and movie production.

It is founded by the world’s richest man Jeff Bezos.

According to the 2019 BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands rankings, Amazon online retailer set its brand value quintuple in the past five years to reach $315.5billion.

It is undertaken annually by advertising holding company WPP.

The detailed study of Brand Z reveals firms financial data and draws on an extensive consumer survey to reach its conclusions.

Amazon expanded into grocery, healthcare, food delivery and, with its Alexa devices, even voice recognition. Amazon jumped from third to first place to eclipse Google.The brand of Amazon from 52 percent to $315 billion.

The company jumped from third place to first place and got the third position to topmost by replacing Google.

About Financial Market

• There are two online shopping namely Alibaba and JD.com Chinese website which are down its Chinese e-commerce operation. Huawei company got a sudden break down of telecom network equipment and smartphone maker poses security and spying risks. Huawei added 8 percent to its brand value in the past year to reach $26.9bn.Netflix was third among the global market and they obtained 65% to obtain its brand value of 34.3 billion.

About Amazon

Founder: Jeff Bezos

Headquarters: Seattle, Washington, U.S.

Services: Amazon.com, Amazon Alexa, Amazon Appstore, Amazon MusicAmazon PrimeAmazon Video

Revenue: US$232.887 billion - 2018

AGREEMENTS AND MOU’s:

NDMA conducts training programme for CBRN emergencies at Kandla Port.

• The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) is conducting a basic training programme at the Deendayal  Port Trust in Kandla, Gujarat. The five-day training programme, aimed at increasing the awareness and enhancing the preparedness of Seaport Emergency Handlers (SEHs) to respond to CBRN emergencies at the seaports, started on June 10, 2019.

• This is the fourth in a series of such programmes that will be conducted at various seaports across the country to enable SEHs to respond suitably till the arrival of specialised response teams. Earlier this year, three batches of SEHs were trained at Mangalore, Kochi and Navi Mumbai.

• CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear) threats emanate at seaports due to arrival, storage and transportation of a large amount of chemical, petrochemical and other CBRN agents.

• The training programme is being conducted in collaboration with the Indian Ports Association (IPA), Institute of Nuclear Medicine & Allied Sciences (INMAS) and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF). This training programme will improve the CBRN safety at our seaports by enabling the SEHs to handle any CBRN emergency.

• The programme consists of lectures as well as field training, including live demonstrations of detection and decontamination including use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and mock exercises. Besides equipping the SEHs to handle CBRN emergencies, the training programme will also enable them to provide medical first aid and initial psycho-social support.

• Experts from stakeholder departments such as Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB), Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will train the participants.

• Around 50 participants representing various agencies responsible for operation and maintenance of the seaport are being trained on various aspects of CBRN emergencies. Another 200 working level staff will be sensitized on the subject in a half-day programme.

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

RBI to infuse Rs.15,000 crore into financial system through the purchase of government bonds.

• The Reserve Bank of India is to infuse Rs.15,000 crore into the financial system through bond purchases on June 13.

Why the infusion:

RBI made the decision after assessing of prevailing liquidity conditions and also of the durable liquidity needs that are going forward.

RBI uses Open Market Operations (OMO) for injecting liquidity into the system through the purchase of government bonds (G-sec). Therefore, RBI is to conduct the purchase of  six G-sec under OMOs through multi-security auction using multiple price method.

What is G-Sec?

A government security (G-Sec) is a debt obligation of the Indian government to fund their fiscal deficit. The securities are tradable. G-sec is  issued either by the central or the state government. They are offered for short term as well as long term.

Multiple price-auction

In a multiple price-auction each successful bidder should pay the price stated bu the player himself. But, in case of uniform price auctions, all successful bidders should pay the cut-off price, that is, the same price at which the market clears the issue.

Open Market Operations:

Open market operations (OMO) refers to the buying and selling of government securities by the central bank, RBI in case of India, in the open market in order to contract or expand the amount of money in the banking system. The purchase of the securities will inject money into the banking system and stimulate growth, while sales of securities do the opposite and contract the economy.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

IV Subba Rao continues as secretary to Vice President.

• IV Subba Rao continues as secretary to Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu as per an order issued by the Ministry of Personnel.

The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet approved the continuation of Rao

He is a retired IAS officer

He serves as secretary to the vice president on a contract basis

More about IV Subba Rao

He is a 1979 batch IAS officer

He belongs to Andhra Pradesh, Rao

He is retired from service in August 2015.

Tokayev sworn in as the President of Kazakhstan.

• Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has sworn in as the President of Kazakhstan. He was the interim president and hand-picked successor of Nursultan Nazarbayev. He won the election, which was held on 9 June, with 70.96% of the vote which was contested against six government-approved candidates.

Tokayev presidency aims to continue Nazarbayev’s policies aimed at improving the well-being of the people. He succeeded Nursultan Nazarbayev, who announced his resignation in March after 30 years in power.

This is the first time Kazakhstan gets its new president since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

BJP MP Virendra Kumar to be pro-tem speaker of Lok Sabha.

• Virendra Kumar, a seven-time MP from Tikamgarh in Madhya Pradesh chosen as the pro tem speaker of the 17th Lok Sabha.

• He was MoS in the ministry of women and child development He was also in the minority affairs ministry in the previous government.

• He is likely to be administered the oath of office at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on June 17, the day where newly elected Lok Sabha commences its first session.

• On the first two days, the new MPs will take the oath.

• The election for the speaker will be on June 19.

• He was elected to the 11th Lok Sabha for the first time in 1996.

• He became a member of the Standing Committee on Labour and Welfare.

• He served as a member and chairman of various committees.

• He studied a Ph.D. started his political career in 1977

• He became the convener of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), Sagar district, Madhya Pradesh.

• He served a prison sentence of 16 months under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) in protest against the imposition of Emergency when he was associated with RSS.

• He was a minister of state in the previous Modi government.

 Definition of Pro Term Speaker:

• After the general election and formation of a new government, a list of senior Lok Sabha members prepared by the Legislative Section is submitted to the Minister of Parliamentary Affairs

• He who selects a pro tem speaker.

• The appointment should be approved by the President.

Mekathoti Sucharitha appointed as the Home Minister of Andhra Pradesh.

• Sucharitha, A Dalit Women was inducted into the Congress by the late Dr Y S Rajashekara Reddy (YSR) spotted her during his historic ‘padayatra’ in 2003.

• Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy appointed Mekathoti Sucharita as the state home minister

• She is one among five ministers to be selected from SC community

• Her native is Poondla village near Bapatla and completed her studies at Phirangipuram, where her father was practising as a doctor.

• She vowed to maintain the highest standards of integrity and honesty in public life and thanked Chief Minister for reposing faith in her and promised that she would live up to the expectations.

About Y S Gagan Mohan Reddy

• Yeduguri Sandinti Jaganmohan Reddy, is an Indian politician

• He is serving as the 17th and current Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh.

• Party: YSR Congress Party

About Andhra Pradesh

• Chief Minister: Y. S. Jaganmohan Reddy (YSR Congress Party)

• Governor: E. S. L. Narasimhan

DAYS:

International Day Against Child Labour observed on June 12.

• International Labour Organization (ILO) started to celebrate World Day Against Child Labour in 2002

Aim: To focus attention on the global extent of child labour and the action and efforts needed to eliminate it.

The 2019 theme is Children shouldn’t work in fields, but on dreams!

The day brings government employers and workers organizations, civil society, as well as millions of people from around the world to highlight the plight of child labourers.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by world leaders in 2015 to include a renewed global commitment to ending child labour.

Sustainable Development Goals and effective measures are take-ups in order to eradicate forced labour, end modern slavery and human trafficking and secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour includes use of child labours by the year 2025 and to end child labour in all its forms.

ILO celebrates 100 years of advancing social justice.

The protection of children embedded in the ILO’s Constitution (Preamble). One of the first Conventions adopted by the ILO was on Minimum Age in Industry (No. 5, 1919).

8.7 target set by the international community calling for an end to child labour in all its forms by 2025.

About World Day Against Child Labour

Observances: UN, International Labour Organization

Frequency: annual

Called as: WDACL

Observed by: UN Members

SPORTS:

International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) re-branded as World Athletics.

• The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), the international governing body for the sport of athletics, changed it name from IAAF to World Athletics. The members of IAAF council have approved the rebranding at an IAAF Council meeting held in Monaco on 8th June. The process to rebrand IAAF began on January 2018.

Purpose:

The new name and logo has been designed to represent the modern and positive face for athletics. Also, it aims to attract theyounger audience.

It will see the organisation take on its new name and a re-designed logo after the 2019 World Athletics Championship in Doha in October.

From the Origin:

IAAF was formed in 17 July 1912. When it was founded the name it had was International Amateur Athletic Federation. It was then changed to International Association of Athletics Federations in 2001.

The headquarters of IAAF is located in Monaco. IAAF has 215 member federations. The Current President of IAAF is Sebastian Coe. The CEO of IAAF is Jon Ridgeon.

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Important Current Affairs of 9th June

NATIONAL:

Karnataka government has launched Pink Sarathi vehicles for womens safety.

• Karnataka government has launched ‘Pink Sarathi’ vehicles that are procured by the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC). It was launched by Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy. BMTC will use the vehicles to attend to the grievances of women passengers in city buses.

• MTC had received Rs.56.07 crore from the Centre under the Nirbhaya scheme. It has also taken up various measures for the safety of women passengers, including the launch of Pink Sarathi vehicles. The BMTC now has a fleet of 25 Pink Sarathi vehicles fitted with GPS and public announcement systems.  

• The safety of female passengers will be a priority. It will also take on other tasks such as manning traffic movement at bus bays making sure that drivers stop at the designated stops, taking action against bus crew when they fail to close the door once the vehicle is in motion, and ensuring that men are not occupying seats reserved for women.

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

ICICI Bank launches centre for MSMEs in Bengaluru.

• ICICI Bank launched a centre in Bengaluru to provide business solutions exclusively to start-ups and MSME sector.

• ICICI Bank along with Viral Rupani, Retail Business Head South, ICICI Bank inaugurated the centre.

• The services offered include working capital loans upto ₹20 crore, business loans (based on GST returns) upto ₹1 crore, instant overdraft facility of ₹15 lakh, extensive trade solutions and cash management services, among others.

• The centre has a legal and valuation desk to assist customers in resolving challenges pertaining to collaterals offered for various loans.

About ICICI Bank

Industry: Banking, Financial services

Headquarters: ICICI Bank Towers, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai, India

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

J&K Bank Chairman removed over governance concerns.

• The Jammu and Kashmir government on Saturday removed J&K Bank's Chairman Parvez Ahmed due to concerns over the bank's governance and functioning. Ahmed, whose tenure was set to end in five months, is reportedly facing allegations of corruption, nepotism and favouritism. The J&K Anti Corruption Bureau raided the premises of J&K Bank's headquarters hours after his removal.

Mrutyunjay Mohapatra is appointed as IMD Chief.

• Renowned scientist and cyclone warning specialist Mrutyunjay Mohapatra was appointed as the Chief of India Meteorological Department (IMD). His is popularly known as Cyclone man. He will take charge in the month of August.

• Mohapatra and his team at the Cyclone Warning Division (CWD) of the IMD are noted for their accurate forecasts on cyclones which have enabled the authorities to ensure early evacuation of millions of people eventually saving many lives. In the past six years, the CWD has given accurate forecasts on cyclones including when Phailin in 2013), Hudhud cyclone in 2014 and Titli in 2018 that hit the eastern coast.

India Meteorological Department

Formed on: 1875

Headquarters: New Delhi

Functions under: Ministry of Earth Sciences

Minister responsible: Harsh Vardhan

Director General: K.J. Ramesh

•  The IMD is responsible for the weather and climate-related forecasts in the country. It is also mandated to issue warning to people about severe weather phenomenon like cyclones, dust storms, heavy rain and snow, cold and heat waves, among others.

Ajeya Kallam appointed principal advisor to Andhra Chief Minister.

• Former Chief Secretary Ajeya Kallam appointed as the principal advisor to Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy.

• It was issued by Chief Secretary LV Subrahmanyam.

• He will have cabinet rank and leading the secretaries in the Chief Minister's office.

• He will be in the position for 3 years, with a monthly salary of Rs 2.5 lakhs.

• He served as director of horticulture, commissioner of agriculture, commissioner of endowments, executive officer of the TTD, and as Visakhapatnam Port Trust chairman.

SPORTS:

India beats Ireland 1-0 in the final to claim U21 four-nation title.

• Indian junior women's hockey team won Cantor Fitzgerald U21 International 4-Nations title after beating Ireland 1-0 in the final

• India ended the tournament three goals in four games, Mumtaz Khan finished as the highest goal scorer of the tournament.

• The second quarter of the game created a new record over it.

• Ireland created three PCs over the period of the final quarter was thwarted by a resolute Bichu Devi and the Indian defense to ensure that the team ended up with a clean sheet.

• Gagandeep's goal major difference between the sides, as India prevailed 1-0 and took the title.

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Important Current Affairs of 7th June

NATIONAL:

India-Marshall Islands tax data pact notified.

• The union government notified an agreement with the Marshall Islands a country of volcanic islands and coral atolls in the Pacific Ocean, for the exchange of banking and company information for tax purposes.

• It comes under tax evasion and tax avoidance.

It is called as tax information exchange agreement (TIEA)

They allow mutual cooperation between the two countries by providing an effective framework for exchange of information in tax matters.

• The agreement (India-Marshall Islands TIEA) between the Indian government and the government of the Marshall Islands was signed on March 18, 2016, at Majuro, the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

• The bilateral agreement is based on international standards of tax transparency and exchange of information and enables the sharing of information on request.

Gujarat topped the country with annual fish production of 7.8 lakh tonnes.

• Gujarat topped the country with annual fish production of 7.8 lakh tonnes, followed by Tamil Nadu (7.02 lakh tonnes) and Kerala (6.43 lakh tonnes) according to the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI).

Tamil Nadu:

• Kanniyakumari topped in the Tamil Nadu state annual fish production.

• Ramanathapuram has emerged as the second topper in the Tamil Nadu state in annual fish production. It has recorded 1.46 lakh tonnes during 2018.

Nagapattinam stands third highest fish production district to have recorded 91,186 tonnes. Thoothukudi stands fourth by recording 70,965 tonnes followed by Cuddalore (62,525 tonnes) and Chennai (55,707 tonnes).

Report:

• The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) released the district wise marine fish landing data for the year 2018. The Fisheries Resources Assessment Division (FRAD) of CMFRI had collected random sampling data across the state and finalized the provisional figure. The data was collected by the fisheries department by employing the multi-stage cluster sampling method and the figures varied.

Fish export in 2018:

• While Cuttlefish (Cephalopods), prawns, Pomfrets, crabs, and fishes belonging to the family of Percidae were exported, the protein-rich Sardines and Anchovies were sold in the local markets.

• According to CMFRI report, the Fish production for the year 2018 was estimated at 3.49 million tonnes at the all India level.

Rajnath Singh to chair the Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.

• Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is to chair the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs in the second term of the NDA government. Decisions on all the parliament matters will be taken by the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.

• He is also a part of the Cabinet Committee on Political Affairs, the all-important panel on political affairs which is headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. All important political decisions in the ruling dispensation will be taken by the panel.

• Apart from these 4 committees, he is also a member of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) and the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS). In total, he is now a part of six key panels of the government.

• In the last government, Rajnath Singh headed the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.

Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan reviews status of Nipah Virus disease in New Delhi.

• Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan reviewed the status of Nipah Virus disease in New Delhi.

• A total of 316 contacts are being followed up on a daily basis.

• One positive case admitted in Ernakulam is now conscious and having a mild fever and six symptomatic contacts have been admitted in the quarantine facility at the Medical College and all the samples were found to be negative.

• A Sample from one symptomatic contact sent to NIV Lab.

• Strategic Health Operation Centre (SHOC) at NCDC has been activated and the activities are coordinated.

• 40 calls have been attended at SHOC- NCDC regarding Nipah information.

District Control Room has been set up in the Collector Office (Helpline No. 04842425200)

Joint Commissioner(Livestock Health) deployed two experts to Ernakulam, Kerala to support local Animal Husbandry Department in the investigation.

• On the basis of the epidemiological investigation, a team from NIV Pune and Animal Husbandry are investigating bats and other animals in the vicinity of his (confirmed case)residence during the possible time of transmission of infection.

About Nipah Virus

• It is a genus of RNA viruses belongs to the family Paramyxoviridae and order Mononegavirales containing five established species.

• Henipaviruses are naturally harbored by pteropid fruit bats and microbats of several species

Scientific name: Henipavirus

Rank: Genus

Higher classification: Paramyxoviridae.

INTERNATIONAL:

Taiwan proposed deal to buy tanks from the US.

• Taiwan plans to propose a deal to buy tanks and portable missiles from the U.S. This proposal by Taiwan drew an angry rebuke from China. Taiwan’s Defence Ministry requested the US for 108 M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks, more than 1,500 Javelin and TOW anti-tank missiles, and 250 shoulder-fired Stinger anti-aircraft missiles in the proposal formally.

• The U.S. government, on the other hand, has given Congress informal notification of its plan to sell the equipment in a deal worth $2 billion.

One-China policy:

• China has asked the U.S. to understand that its decision to sell arms to Taiwan might cause problems between China and Taiwan as it is expected Taiwan to abide by the One China principle.

• One-China policy says that there is only one country of China with the official name of China, despite the fact that there are two governments namely the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (ROC).

• Despite being ruled separately since the end of a civil war in 1949, China still views Taiwan as its territory and has vowed to take the island, by force if necessary.

• If China announces war on Taiwan, the country outgunned in terms of troop numbers and firepower. Hence, Taiwan is in need to upgrade much of its equipment. Its current tank force consists of around 1,000 CM 11 Brave Tiger and M60A3 tanks, a technology that is increasingly obsolete.

Past Taiwan and US deal:

• The U.S. government announced plans in 2018 to sell spare parts worth $330 million to Taiwan for its U.S. made F-16 fighter jets and C-130 military transport planes. Taiwan has also submitted a formal request to Washington for new fighter jets to upgrade its air force but the US had not made any open response yet.

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

RBI reduces interest rates by 25 basis points to 5.75 percent.

• The Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) reduced interest rates by 25 basis points to 5.75% with immediate effect amid slowing economic growth and rising global uncertainty, for the 3rd time in a row.

RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das announced it in the second bi-monthly monetary policy statement for 2019-20.

Purpose:

• The reduction is expected to bring down the EMIs on home and auto loans, and reduce the debt repayment burden on corporates.

What is repo rate?

• It is the rate at which the central bank of a country, that is RBI, lends money to commercial banks in the event of any shortfall of funds. The monetary authorities use this to control inflation. The banks can borrow money for about 7 to 14 days from the Reserve Bank of India.

Policy rates and Reserve ratios:

Policy Repo Rate: 5.75%

Reverse Repo Rate: 5.50%

Marginal Standing Facility Rate: 6.00%

Bank Rate: 6.00%

CRR: 4%

SLR: 19.00%

HDFC Bank appoints new auditor after RBI's action against EY firm.

• HDFC Bank has cancelled the re-appointment of SR Batliboi & Co, a member firm of EY, after the RBI restricted it from auditing commercial banks for a year. India's largest bank by market value has appointed MSKA & Associates as its new statutory auditor. RBI said lapses have been identified in a statutory audit assignment carried out by SR Batliboi.

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Important Current Affairs 6th June

NATIONAL:

Indian football team Baichung Bhutia congratulated Chhetri becoming India's most-capped Player.

• Former India skipper Bhaichung Bhutia congratulated Sunil Chhetri and became India's most capped international player with 108 appearances.

He overtook his mentor Bhutia's record of 107 matches and captained India in the King's Cup opener against Curacao.

He scored the goal for his side in the 31st minute from a spot kick for his 69th goal.

India ranked 101.

The 82nd ranked Caribbean island nation two players associated with English Premier League and some others in European leagues.

They scored three goals in the space of 18 minutes through Roly Bonevacia, Elson Hooi and Leandro Bacuna.

India will play with the losing team of the match between Thailand and Vietnam in the third-place play-off.

About Bhaichung Bhutia

Current team: East Bengal F.C. (Forward)

Awards: Padma Shri, Arjuna Award for Football

Govt. set up a 10 member Cabinet Committee on Employment and Skill Development.

• The government set up a 10-member Cabinet Committee on Employment and Skill Development on 5 June. The committee is one of two Cabinet committees that are set up to rise the economic growth and tackle unemployment.

Members of the committee:

The Committee will be chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The committee includes:

Home Minister Amit Shah

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal

Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar

Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’

Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

Minister Skill and Entrepreneurship Mahendra Nath Pandey

Ministers of State Santosh Kumar Gangwar (Labour)

Ministers of State Hardeep Singh Puri (Housing and Urban Affairs

Reason for the formation of the committee:

The committee was set up because the Employment data for 2017-18 which was released on May 31 after the Lok Sabha elections reported that the country's unemployment rate has risen to 6.1% in the period. This is the highest in 45 years.

Fall in Gross Domestic Product (GDP):

• It is expected that the committee on economic growth will prepare a road map to bring the economy back on the growth trajectory as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) fell to 5.8% in the last quarter of 2018-19. It is the lowest since 2014. The GDP growth for 2018-19 was 6.8%, against the target of 7.2%.

• The fall in growth is the result of the dip in the performance of the core sectors of the economy, as the eight core sectors recorded a growth of just 2.6 % in April, compared with 4.6% in the same month in 2018. According to the government's data, the country’s economic growth saw the third straight fall in January-March quarter in 2019.

Note:

•The eight core sectors are coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, fertilizers, steel, cement, and electricity.

Pramila Jayapal as first Indian-American woman to preside over US House.

• Pramila Jayapal first Indian American woman to preside over US house.

She is the first elected to Congress in 2016 preside over the House and served the most diverse Congress in the nation's history.

• She presided over the House as a Temporary Speaker.

• The House Democrats rotate for the ceremonial position of presiding over the chamber.

She became the first South Asian American woman to preside over the US House of Representatives.

• A record number of 17 Asian Americans serve in Congress with 14 in the House and three in the Senate house.

About Pramila Jayapal

• Pramila Jayapal is an American politician and activist from the State of Washington

She serves as the U.S. Representative from Washington's 7th congressional district.

•It includes most of Seattle as well as suburban areas of King County.

Nirmala Sitharaman to attend G20 Finance Ministers Meeting in Japan.

• Finance Minister Shri Nirmala Sitharaman attend the two-day meeting of G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank governors in Japan on June 8 and 9

• It is the first overseas visit of Sitharaman as the Finance Minister.

• She took charge as full time finance minister last week.

• The main aim is to focus on the risks and challenges of overseas trade and investment in infrastructure which are faced by our country.

• Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) submit a report on taxation, urging greater cooperation among nations.

•India actively participating in the OECD-G20 efforts to create a global consensus on the taxation of the digital economy.

About G 20

Chairperson: Shinzō Abe

Founder: Group of Seven

Founded: 26 September 1999

Purpose  :  Bring together systemically important industrialized and developing economies to discuss key issues in the global economy.

INTERNATIONAL:

Report says sharp 10 percent decline in the approval rate of H 1B visa by the US.

• US authorities said that there was a sharp 10% decline in the approval of H-1B visas by the U.S. in 2018, which is popular among highly skilled Indian IT professionals. The experts attributed to the aggressive policies of the Trump administration to clamp down on the use of the work visa programme.

What is H-1b Visa?

• H-1B visa programme is the main vehicle through which US employers can sponsor skilled foreign workers for admission. It is a non-immigrant visa that allows U.S. companies to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise.

10% decline in approval rate:

• In 2018, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approved 3,35,000 H-1B visas, both new and renewable. This was 10% less than the 3,73,400 visas approved in the previous fiscal year of 2017, according to the USCIS’ annual statistical report. The approval rate of H-1B declined from 93% in 2017 to 85% in 2018.

• For the first six months of the fiscal year 2019, the overall approval rate of the H-1B visa for new and continuing visas continued to stay to 79% by the end of March, down from 85% last year.

Buy American and Hire American:

• “Buy American and Hire American” executive order which was signed by Trump in April 2017, seeks to create higher wages and employment rates for U.S. workers. It also seeks to protect their economic interests by rigorously enforcing and administering our immigration laws. • It also directed to advance policies to help ensure H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid beneficiaries.

Forbes magazine named Rihanna as the worlds richest female musician.

• Forbes magazine has named Rihanna as the world’s richest female musician. Rihanna's Fenty Beauty brand business endeavors have officially made her the richest female musician in the world. Her worth is estimated at $600m (£472m) which includes revenues made from her fashion and beauty lines in addition to those from her music career.

• Forbes reported that the French luxury brand LVMH backs Rihanna’s lucrative cosmetics company, Fenty Beauty. Fenty beauty was launched in 2017. It is worth more than £3bn, from which Rihanna has earned $570m. 

• In 2012, Rihanna founded the Clara Lionel Foundation. The trust supports health and education efforts in impoverished communities around the world. Harvard University, in February 2017, she was named humanitarian of the year.

• Top 5 in Forbes’ list of richest female musicians:

• The other singers in Forbes’s list of the top five richest female musicians are:

• Madonna stands second place ($570m)

• Céline Dion stands third ($450m)

• Beyoncé and Barbra Streisand tied in fourth ($400m)

• Taylor Swift stands sixth ($360m).

• Forbes other rankings:

• Forbes has also name Kardashian scion Kylie Jenner as America’s youngest self-made billionaire.

• It has named Jay-Z as the world’s first billionaire rapper as his worth is estimated at $1bn.

China launched a space rocket from the sea for the first time on 5 June.

• China launched a space rocket from the sea for the first time on 5 June 2019.  With this China will be the third nation to successfully demonstrate the ability to launch satellites into orbit from a floating platform following the U.S. and Russia.

In the operation, March 11, a Long rocket was launched from a ship in the Yellow Sea.

Aim:

• The first ever seaborne launch technology aims to meet the growing launch demand of low inclination satellites. It is also expected to help China provide launch services for countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative

Payloads:

• The rocket carried two experimental satellites and five commercial satellites. The experimental satellites will monitor ocean winds to set up  all-weather monitoring of ocean wind fields and improve typhoon monitoring and accuracy of the weather forecast in China. It was built by the China Academy of Space Technology in Beijing.

Experimental satellites:

1. Bufeng-1A

2. Bufeng-1B

Commercial satellites:

1. Earth-imaging cubesat - 1

2. Tianqi-3, an experimental communications satellite

3,4. China's first Ka-band communications satellites- Two satellites

5. New satellite for China's Jilin-1 remote-sensing satellite constellation

The seaborne test along with its ambitious plans for missions to the moon and beyond has made China a major space power.

China's space exploration:

• China is the first nation to land a rover on the far side of the moon. It also plans to build a research base on the lunar surface. The country also plans to send a probe to Mars and build a space station in Earth orbit.

• In 2003, China became the third nation to have the capability of launching humans into space.

China is one of the leading country in launching a number of satellites from its launch stations on land.

Russia launched first Arctic train service.

• Russia launched its first ever tourist train traveling through Russia's Arctic region to Norway set off from Saint Petersburg station with 91 passengers aboard for the inaugural trial journey.

• The train named "Zarengold" ("The Tsars gold" in German) complete with two restaurant cars travel from Saint Petersburg through  Petrozavodsk, the historic town of Kem and Murmansk.

The duration of the trip will be 11 days

• The inaugural function consists of 91 tourists from seven countries including the US, Germany, Norway and Russia.

About Russia

Capital: Moscow

Currency: Russian ruble

President: Vladimir Putin

AGREEMENTS AND MOU's:

India and France to carry out Garuda, a two week long mega air exercise.

• Indian Air Force and French Air Force have planned to carry out Garuda, a two-week-long mega air exercise, beginning on July 1 in France. The aim is to boost the military-to-military ties between the two countries. A fleet of Sukhoi 30 fighter jets of the Indian Air Force will engage in dogfights with France’s Rafale multirole aircraft in simulated scenarios as part of the ‘Garuda’ exercise.

• Other assets include mid-air refueller will also be sent to France by the IAF. It will be one of the largest air exercises between the two strategic partners. The exercise will also provide an opportunity to a sizeable number of IAF pilots to have a close look at the Rafale jets being operated by the French Air Force.

• India had signed a government-to-government deal with France in 2016 to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets at a cost of about Rs.58,000-crore. The first Rafale jet is scheduled to be delivered in September.

Disability Summit, Argentina 2019 is being held Buenos Aires, Argentina.

• The 2nd Global Disability Summit being held in Buenos Aires, Argentina. 'Disability Summit, Argentina 2019', the three-day summit will be held from 6 June to 8 June 2019. India will be represented by the Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Thaawar Chand Gehlot.

Organized by:

• The Global Disability Summit is organized by International Alliance Disability (IDA), an umbrella organization focused on improving awareness and rights for individuals with disabilities around the globe which was established in 1999, and Latin American Network of Non-Governmental Organizations of Persons with Disabilities and their Families (RIADIS).

Objective:

• The summit will be focusing on deliberating issues across the world concerning empowerment and inclusion of Persons with Disabilities. The summit will also include a discussion to work out a mechanism for enabling them to live an independent and dignified life.

• The Summit brings together governments, international organizations, organizations of people with disabilities, civil society organizations,  international cooperation agencies, academia, and the private sector, with the hope of achieving real change for people with disabilities.

1st Global Disability Summit:

• The 1st Global Disability Summit was held in London on 23-24 July 2018. The summit was hosted by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), along with the International Disability Alliance (IDA) and the Government of Kenya.

Aim:

• The 1st summit was in line with the principle of ‘nothing about us, without us’. 40 countries participated in the summit.

• All countries that participated in the summit signed the Charter for Change, the principal legacy document of the Global Disability Summit and committed to working in direction of economic empowerment of the persons with disabilities.

DAYS:

Maharana Pratap Jayanti observed on 6 June.

• Maharana Pratap Jayanti is observed on June 6. It is observed to commemorate the birth anniversary of the brave Rajput warrior Maharana Pratap.  It was his 479th birth anniversary.

Maharana Pratap:

• Maharana Pratap was the ruler of Mewar. He is the eldest son of Maharana Udai Singh and Maharani Jaiwanta Bai. Maharana Pratap is a symbol of Rajput valour, gallantry, and diligence. He fought against Mughal supremacy to free his homeland from their control.

• Mewar is a province in modern-day Rajasthan. The province includes Bhilwara, Chittorgarh, Rajsamand, Udaipur, Pirawa (Jhalawar), Neemuch and Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh, and some parts of Gujarat.

Some amazing facts of Maharana Pratap:

• Maharana Pratap was one of the strongest warriors in India. He is of 7 feet 5 inches in height. He carried 360 kg of weight, which included a spear weighing 80 kg, two swords weighing 208 kg and his armour was around 72 kg heavy. His own weight was more than 110 kg.

He had 11 wives, 17 sons, and 5 daughters.

• He didn't surrender to Akbar while all the other Rajput rulers surrendered and became members of his council.

• Maharana Pratap bravely fought the Haldi Ghati Battle with an army of 22,000 against the Mughal army of 80,000. But he lost the war due to treachery by his brother.

• Chetak, Maharana Pratap’s horse, is known for his loyalty to his master. The horse is said to have a tinge of blue on his coat. Chetak lost his life while jumping across a 21-feet wide river to save his master’s life.

• Ramprasad, Maharana Pratap's elephant killed 2 war elephants of the Mughal army. Ramprasad was imprisoned by Akbar and refused to eat anything or drink and lost his life on the 18th day.

• He died of an injury from the hunting accident while tightening the string of a bow with an arrow.

Appointments and resignations:

Wipro Founder Premji to retire after 53 years, son to be Chairman.

• Wipro Founder Azim Premji will retire as Executive Chairman and Managing Director effective July 30 after having led the IT services company for 53 years. His son and Chief Strategy Officer Rishad Premji will take over as Executive Chairman while CEO Abidali Neemuchwala has been appointed as MD. Premji, however, will continue to serve as non-executive director and Founder Chairman.

About Wipro:

• Wipro Limited is an Indian multinational corporation that provides information technology, consulting and business process services. It is headquartered in Bengaluru, Karnataka, India. In 2013, Wipro separated its non-IT businesses into separate companies.

• Founder: M.H. Hasham Premji

• Founded: 29 December 1945, India

• Owner: Azim Premji

• Headquarters: Bengaluru

• Revenue: 847 crores USD (2019)

• Subsidiaries: Appirio, Topcoder, Designit, Yardley of London

About Azim Premji:

• Founder: M.H. Hasham Premji

• Founded: 29 December 1945, India

• Owner: Azim Premji

• Headquarters: Bengaluru

• Revenue: 847 crores USD (2019)

• Subsidiaries: Appirio, Topcoder, Designit, Yardley of London

AWARDS:

Google Sunder Pichai, Nasdaqs Friedman Receive 2019 Global Leadership Award.

• Google's Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Sundar Pichai and Nasdaq President Adena Friedman selected for Global Leadership Awards 2019 by business advocacy group USIBC.

They both are recognized for their companies contribution as the leading technology-driven platforms

• Washington-based US-India Business Council (USIBC) gives this award for achievements in over 30 categories for talented people who are recognized for their work by their companies.

The award will be given in 'India Ideas Summit' next week.

• Google and Nasdaq at the vanguard, bilateral trade in goods and services grew by nearly 150% over the past five years to touch $142.1 billion in 2018.

About Google

Founded: 4 September 1998

CEO: Sundar Pichai

Parent organization: Alphabet Inc.

Founders: Larry Page, Sergey Brin

About  Nasdaq

CEO: Adena Friedman

Headquarters: New York, United States

Market cap: $10 trillion.

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