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Monday, October 05, 2015

Current Affairs Update – 5th October, 2015

Hello and welcome to ExamPundit. Here are the Important Current Affairs of 4th and 5th October, 2015. These are Important for the upcoming IBPS PO V Mains Exam.

Finance/Industry –

ADB to grant Rs 1,500 cr to Madhya Pradesh for skill development

  • Asian Development Bank (ADB) has decided to give around Rs 1,500 crore ($ 240 million) for skill development in Madhya Pradesh.
  • “ADB has cleared our proposal for grant of Rs 1,500 crore for skilling in the state,” MP Technical and Higher Education Minister Umashankar Gupta told reporters here.
  • He said that 906 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) were operational in the state.
  • Gupta said that with the help of NABARD loan, 96 ITIs with an investment of Rs 189.11 crore are to be set up.

India Accounts for Largest Number of Poor People: WB Report

  • India accounted for the largest number of poor people in any country in 2012, but its poverty rate was lowest among countries having large number of poor population, a latest World Bank report has said.
  • According to the report, the number of people living in extreme poverty around the world is likely to fall to under 10 per cent of the global population in 2015.
  • "India was home to the largest number of poor in 2012, but its poverty rate is one of the lowest among those countries with the largest number of poor," the bank said.
  • Giving fresh evidence that a quarter-century-long sustained reduction in poverty is moving the world closer to the historic goal of ending poverty by 2030, it said a new methodology applied to household surveys in India suggests that its poverty rate could be even lower.

Germany to provide €1 bn loan to Indian solar power sector

  • Germany has agreed to provide loans to the tune of €1 billion at concessional rates to India’s solar energy sector. The loans will be disbursed over the next five years.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding to this effect was signed by Power, Coal and New & Renewable Energy Minister Piyush Goyal and the German Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Gerd Müller on Monday.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chancellor of the Federal Republic of German, Angela Merkel also decided to forge an Indo-German Climate and Renewable Alliance.
  • The statement said that the alliance will be a comprehensive partnership to harness technology, innovation and finance in order to make affordable, clean and renewable energy accessible to all.
  • The two countries agreed to enhance their ongoing cooperation in areas such as next generation solar technology, renewable energy storage, climate-friendly space cooling technologies, super-efficient appliances and buildings, zero emission passenger and freight vehicles, energy-efficient rail and water infrastructure as well as offshore wind energy.

India, Germany to Set Up Mechanism to Fast-Track Investments

  • India and Germany today signed an agreement to set up a separate body to fast-track investments by German companies in the country and weed out the obstacles faced by them in conducting business here.
  • "We have signed a fast track agreement in which we will closely monitor on a monthly basis all issues faced by German companies in India," DIPP Secretary Amitabh Kant said at a Indo-German Business Roundtable here.
  • The agreement, signed between Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce, and Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy (Germany), will set up a separate body which will be functional by March 2016, according to a senior official of the German embassy in India.
  • The body will fast-track investments by German companies into India by regularly screening problems faced by them.

World Bank released global poverty projections for 2015

  • World Bank on 4 October 2015 released global poverty projections for the year 2015. As per the projections, the number of people living in extreme poverty around the world is likely to fall to under 10 percent of the global population in 2015.
  • Consequently, the world is all set to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal 1- ending poverty in all its forms by 2030.
  • The projections were based on the updated poverty line of 1.90 US dollars per day on the 2011 Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) exchange rates basis. The earlier poverty line was 1.25 US dollars per day at 2005 PPP exchange rates.

Takeaways from the poverty projections
  • Sustained reduction in poverty, began in 1990, is moving the world closer to the historic goal of ending poverty by 2030
  • Global poverty will have fallen from 902 million people or 12.8 per cent of the global population in 2012 to 702 million people or 9.6 per cent of the global population in 2015.
  • Reductions in poverty were due to strong growth rates in developing countries in recent years, investments in people’s education, health, and social safety nets that helped keep people from falling back into poverty.          

India –

MoU signed to set up Indo-German ‘Centres of Excellence’ in farm sector

  • A memorandum of understanding was signed here on Monday between the German Agribusiness Alliance and the Agriculture Skill Council of India for the purpose of jointly establishing ‘Indo-German Centres of Excellence in Agriculture’.
  • The MoU was signed by Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh and his German counterpart Christian Schmidt. The centres will aim to create a platform for practical agri-skill development in India.
  • The prime objective of this collaboration would be to provide practical professional skill training as well as practical demonstrations of modern technologies and methods (capacity building) to various stakeholders of the agriculture development ecosystem,” said Joerg Rehbeim, spokesman, GAA.
  • Rehbeim added that the GAA hoped to raise awareness on emerging areas of agri-technologies and their application through the initiative and adopt best development practices from both countries for efficient cultivation methods.

ISRO develops hailstorm app to assess crop damage

  • To fasten payment of crop insurance claims to farmers, the Centre on Monday launched a pilot programme Kisan, which will use satellite and drone-based imaging and other geospatial technology to get timely and accurate data on crop yields.
  • Also to access large-scale damage to standing crops, it launched an Android-based app for collection of data of hailstorm.
  • The app will be used by State agriculture officials and the data will help the Union Agriculture Ministry in having very fast assessment of damage to crops because of hailstorm.
  • Initially, the pilot study will be carried out in rice and cotton fields in four districts during the ongoing kharif season in Karnataka (Shimoga), Maharastra (Yavatmal), Haryana (Kurkshetra) and Madhya Pradesh (Seoni), he said.
  • It will also be carried out during the 2015-16 rabi season in eight districts in same States to assess the crop yields of rice, wheat and shorghum, the Minister said.

DRDO inaugurated world’s highest Research Centre in Ladakh

  • The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) on 3 October 2015 inaugurated an Extreme Altitude Research Centre at Chang La, Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir at 17600 feet above mean sea level. It is the world’s highest terrestrial research and development centre.
  • It is situated 75 km off Leh town towards Pangong Lake.
  • The centre has been established by the Defence Institute of High Altitude Research (DIHAR), Leh, a constituent establishment of DRDO.
  • The centre will serve as a natural cold storage for preserving rare and endangered medicinal plants for generations.
  • The centre will be highly useful for Research & Development work in anterior areas of food and agriculture and bio-medical sciences for safety of the soldiers deployed in high-altitude cold desert.

26th edition of CORPAT between India and Indonesia began in Andaman Sea

  • 26th edition of the Coordinated Patrol (CORPAT) between India and Indonesia began on 3 October 2015 in the Andaman Sea. The expanded version of the 18-day long CORPAT that will conclude on 21 October 2015 will also see the first ever bilateral exercise between the two nations.
  • The two-day inaugural India-Indonesia Bilateral Maritime Exercise is scheduled from 17 October to 18 October 2015 in the Andaman Sea.

Participants in the 26th edition of CORPAT are
  1. India - INS Saryu, an indigenously built NOPV based at the Andaman and Nicobar Command, along with a Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft
  2. Indonesia - Indonesian Navy

Appointments –

Shashank Manohar elected BCCI President

  • Shashank Manohar on 4 October 2015 was elected President of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). He was elected unopposed during a special general meeting called by the BCCI following the demise of Jagmohan Dalmiya.
  • Manohar, who has also served as the 29th President of the board from 2008 to 2011, will remain at the helm for two years.
  • He is also referred to as Mr. Clean and is also known for his spotless track record and integrity in cricketing circles.

Flipkart appointed Sriram Venkataraman as Chief Financial Officer

  • India’s e-commerce giant, Flipkart, on 4 October 2015 appointed Sriram Venkataraman as the new Chief Finance Officer (CFO) for its commerce platform (CP). The homegrown online marketplace also appointed Pramod Jain as Vice President and Head of Taxation.
  • Venkataraman will watch over all aspects of the finance function for CP. He will also be responsible to drive the CP business to deliver its goals.
  • Jain will play an important role in taking the tax team’s engagement with revenue and government authorities to the next level.

Ashish Bahuguna given additional charge of Chief Executive Officer of FSSAI

  • Ashish Bahuguna, the Chairman of the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), on 4 October 2015 was given an additional charge of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of FSSAI.
  • The decision was taken following the shift of Yudhvir Singh Malik to NITI Aayog as an Additional Secretary in September 2015.
  • A retired IAS officer of 1978-batch of Rajasthan cadre and former Agriculture Secretary, Bahuguna was appointed as Chairman of the food regulator in July 2015.
  • He will hold the position of CEO until a new appointment is made for the position.

Awards & Honors –

Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine-2015 announced

  • The Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine on 5 October 2015 announced the recipients of the 2015 award.
  • The 2015 prize was divided, one half jointly to William C Campbell (Ireland) and Satoshi Omura (Japan) for their discoveries concerning a novel therapy against infections caused by roundworm parasites and the other half to Youyou Tu (China) for her discoveries concerning a novel therapy against Malaria.

Contributions of Awardees
  1. William C Campbell is an Irish biochemist, Biologist and Parasitologist known for his discoveries concerning a novel therapy against infections caused by roundworms. Currently, he is a research fellow emeritus at Drew University, Madison in New Jersey, the USA.
  2. Satoshi Omura is a Japanese biochemist. He is known for the discovery and development of various originally occurring microorganisms in pharmaceuticals to treat roundworm. At present, he is associated with the Kitasato University of Japan.
  3. Youyou Tu is a Chinese medical scientist, pharmaceutical chemist, and educator best known for discovering artemisinin (also known as Qinghaosu) and dihydroartemisinin, used to treat malaria. At present, she is working at the China Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Tamil Writer Perumal Murugan wins ILF Samanvay Bhasha award

  • Tamil writer Perumal Murugan will be honoured with the fourth Indian Languages Festival (ILF) ‘Samanvay Bhasha Samman’, organisers said on Monday.
  • The prestigious annual award recognises contribution to Indian literature.
  • Mr. Murugan will receive the award for Madhorubhagan, the novel for which he had earned the wrath of local groups forcing the author-poet earlier this year to withdraw himself from writing.
  • The author is set to be awarded on November 28 during the fifth edition of India Habitat Centre’s ILF ‘Samavay-2015’.
  • Previous winners of the award include Hindi author Ashok Vajpeyi, Gujarati author Chandrakant Topiwala and Odiya writer Sitakant Mahapatra.

Sports –

China won 2015 FIBA Asian Basketball Championship

  • China on 3 October 2015 won the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Asia Championship by defeating the Philippines by 78-67 in the final.
  • The victory has won the nation a direct qualification for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
  • The game was organised in front of a 7000 strong capacity crowd in Changsha, Hunan province of China.
  • In the final game, Yi Jianlian scored maximum runs and earned 15 rebounds. He was also selected as the Most Valuable Player of the tournament.

Portugal’s Pinto won Asia’s premier Mountain Biking Race

  • Luis Leao Pinto of Portugal on 4 October 2015 won Asia’s premier mountain biking race and got the crown of ‘King of the Himalaya’ for the second time. He took time of 27:29:22 in the 600 km long 7 stages biking race that ended in capital Shimla of Himachal Pradesh.
  • Earlier, he won the crown in the year 2013.
  • The other two top riders in the Solo Men’s category were Andi Seewald of Germany and Pau Zamora of Spain. All of them have neck-to-neck race. Total 68 riders took part in the race and 54 completed it.

Days –

National Anti-Drug Addiction Day observed on 2 October

  • The National Anti-Drug Addiction Day was observed on 2 October 2015 across the country. It was observed to mark the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi who condemned the use of drugs.
  • The aim of the day is to make India free from drug and to preserve the talent.
  • The day was created by the Union Government against the backdrop of growing drug addiction in the country.
  • As per the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), while the year 2012 saw 10796 drug-related cases, it was increased to 12818 in 2013.
  • Further, in recent times, India has become the major global transiting point for illegal drug trade.

Obituaries –

Noted Telugu film producer Edida Nageswara Rao died

  • Noted Telugu film producer Edida Nageswara Rao died of the old-age-related illness on 4 October 2015 at a private hospital in Hyderabad. He was 81. He is survived by wife and a son.
  • Rao, the producer of 10 Telugu movies is known for his landmark films like Shankarabharanam (1979), Sagarasangamam (1983) and Swatimutyam (1986). His films helped him to garner four national awards as well as Nandi awards.


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