Daily GK Update & Current Affairs: 24th-25th September 2017
1. PM Narendra Modi launches ‘Saubhagya’ scheme:
- Today, The Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched the ‘Saubhagya’ scheme in New Delhi, to mark the birth anniversary of ‘Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya’.
- The scheme ‘Saubhagya’ will provide subsidy on equipment like transformers, meters, and wires and expected to cover all rural families after expected electrification of all villages by the end of 2018.
- Prime Minister also inaugurated ONGC’s new corporate office that was renamed Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya Urja Bhawan, from Rajiv Gandhi Urja Bhawan.
2. Rajiv Mehrishi sworn in as CAG of India:
- Former Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi was sworn in as new Comptroller and Auditor-General (CAG) of India. He was administered oath of office and secrecy by President Ram Nath Kovind. He succeeded Shashi Kant Sharma.
- Mr Mehrishi is 1978 batch IAS officer of Rajasthan cadre. He has worked for both Union and State governments at top positions and his bureaucratic career spanned more than 30 years. Before retirement from service, he had served as Home Secretary.
3. Angela Merkel Wins 4th Term as Chancellor of Germany:
- Angela Merkel won a fourth term as chancellor in Germany elections that lifted the far-right party Alternative for Germany into parliament for the first time since the immediate aftermath World War II.
- Merkel’s Christian Democrat-led bloc took 32.5% to defeat Martin Schulz’s Social Democrats, whose 20% is its worst result since the war, the exit polls for national broadcasters ARD and ZDF showed.
4. Andhra CM Naidu Declares 2017 as e-Pragati Year:
- Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu declared the year of 2017 as e-Pragati year. The flagship program will help the government to make real-time governance.
- The Chief Minister also inaugurated the Andhra Pradesh Sports Policy 2017.
5. Pralay Sahayam: Multi-Agency Disaster Relief Exercise held in Hyderabad
- Multi-Agency humanitarian assistance and disaster relief exercise Pralay Sahayam was recently held in Hyderabad to create public awareness about man-made and natural climate change and urban disasters including flooding.
- The two-day exercise was jointly organised by Telangana state government in association with all central and state agencies National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF) and Armed Forces.
6. India, US, Afghanistan Join Hands for 1st Trade Show in Delhi:
- For the first time, India, US and Afghanistan will hold a joint trade and investment show in Delhi, as New Delhi steps up to its role of being a bigger development partner to Afghanistan.
- The trade event, sponsored by the US and hosted by India, will be inaugurated by Afghan CEO Dr Abdullah.
7. 7th ASEM Economic Minister’s Meeting Held in South Korea:
- The 7th ASEM (Asia–Europe Meeting) Economic Ministers’ Meeting was held in Seoul, South Korea. Theme for this year’s meeting was ‘Innovative Partnership for Inclusive Prosperity’.
- The meeting was conducted under the Chairmanship of the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy of the Republic of Korea. 51 member countries signed a Joint Statement on Supporting the Multilateral Trade System.
8. C.N.R Rao chosen for international honour for materials research:
- Eminent scientist & Bharat Ratna ‘Professor C.N.R Rao’ (first Asian) has chosen for the prestigious Von Hippel Award for his immense contribution in materials research. The award is the US-based Materials Research Society’s (MRS) highest honour.
- It recognizes, those qualities most prized by materials scientists and engineers – brilliance and originality of intellect, combined with vision that transcends the boundaries of conventional scientific disciplines.
- The award citation noted Mr. Rao’s immense work on novel functional materials, including nanomaterials, graphene and 2D materials, superconductivity, and colossal magnetoresistance.
- The award includes a cash prize, trophy, and a diploma, will be presented on 29th November in Boston.
9. V-409: Indian Coast Guard’s interceptor boat launched:
- Indian Coast Guard’s (ICG) new interceptor boat V-409 was launched in Mangaluru, Karnataka by Bharathi Defence and Infrastructure Limited (BDIL).
- The vessel will be inducted into service by mid-October 2017 to give boost to coastal security and national security.
- The V-409 interceptor boat has length of 28 meters, beam of 6 meters and draught of 1.2 meters. It has aluminium hull.
10. DRUZBA 2017, Pak-Russia Joint Military Drill Started:
- The joint exercise DRUZBA 2017 between special forces of Pakistan and Russia Armies started in Minralney Vody, Russia.
- Pakistan and Russia are holding two-week long joint military drill focusing on counter-terrorism operations to enhance military ties between the two countries.
11. China’s Hui Ka Yan Becomes Asia’s Richest Man:
- Hui Ka Yan, the chairman of big China real estate developer China Evergrande Group, has become Asia’s richest man according to the Forbes Real-Time Billionaires List.
- Among mainland Chinese, Hui’s estimated fortune of $42.2 billion puts him ahead of Tencent Holdings Chairman Ma Huateng ($39.1 billion), Alibaba Group Chairman Jack Ma ($38.9 billion), and Wanda Group Chairman Wang Jianlin ($30.4 billion). Ma Huateng currently ranks second in Asia and Jack Ma third.
- Forbes magazine was founded 100 years ago on September 17, 1917, by B.C. Forbes.
12. Masala Bonds to be Treated as ECB: RBI
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced that Masala bonds will be treated as External Commercial Borrowings (ECB) from 3rd October 2017 thereby freeing up more investments by FPIs.
- Masala bonds are rupee-denominated overseas bonds. Currently, the limit for investment by foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) in corporate bonds is Rs 2,44,323 crore.
13. The Shershah of Kargil- The biography of Captain Vikram Batra Unveiled:
- Kargil war hero Captain Vikram Batra was martyred at the tender age of 24. The biography of Captain Vikram Batra “The Shershah of Kargil” has been written by 21-year-old Deepak Surana.
- Though books on Captain Batra have been written before, according to Deepak this is the first book that is based entirely on primary sources.
14. Mary Kom to be AIBA representative at IOC athletes’ forum:
- Olympic bronze-medallist ‘MC Mary Kom’ (33-years) has become the first Indian to be picked as the International Boxing Association’s representative for the IOC Athletes’ Forum.
- She has been invited to attend the 8th International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Athletes’ Forum in Lausanne from 11th to 13th November this year.
- This bi-annual forum brings together athlete representatives from across the Olympic Movement and provides an in-person community where athletes can exchange and discuss their viewpoint.
15. 57th National Open Athletics Ch’ships to begin in Chennai:
- Today, the 57th National Open Athletics Championships 2017 has begun at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai.
- Around 1200 athletes from various states and departments & public-sector undertakings would be taking part in the four-day meet.
- Besides, state teams, numerous athletes will also participate on behalf of their institutions like All India Police Sports Board, ONGC, LIC, apart from the Railways and Services.
- The host state (Tamil Nadu) would be represented by 41 men and 35 women athletes.
16. Sports Ministry Recommends P.V. Sindhu for Padma Bhushan:
- Olympic silver medallist shuttler P.V. Sindhu has been recommended for the prestigious Padma Bhushan, country’s third highest civilian award, by the Sports Ministry.
- She is two-time bronze medallist at World Championship. In March 2015, Sindhu was awarded India’s fourth highest civilian honour, the Padma Shri.
17. ICC Launches Anti-Corruption Probe into Sri Lanka Cricket:
- The International Cricket Council (ICC) has launched an anti-corruption investigation in Sri Lanka. The ICC’s Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) officers had recently visited the country as part of the probe.
- The ICC Anti-Corruption Unit works to uphold integrity in cricket and this includes conducting investigations where there are reasonable grounds to do so.