Hello and welcome to ExamPundit. Here are the important Current Affairs of 4th and 5th March, 2016.
Country's first small finance bank Capital Local Area Bank to start ops on April 13
- Jalandhar based Capital Local Area Bank limited (CLABL), is set to become country's first Small Finance Bank (SFB) by flagging-off its operations on April 13, 2016.
- The Punjab-based entity is the first among ten players to get final licence from the Reserve Bank of India. CLABL is currently active as local area bank.
- The CLABL will launch operations under a new name ‘Capital Small Finance Bank Limited’ on April 13, coinciding with the auspicious festival of Baisakhi (the beginning of rabi harvest that gives a major boost to rural spending) in Punjab.
- Banking regulator had given in principle licence to set up small finance banks under the 'Guidelines for Licensing of Small Finance Banks in Private Sector' (Guidelines) issued on November 27, 2014. Other entities who have received nod for SFB include Au Financiers, and eight Micro Finance Institutions like Janalakshmi Fin.
RBI released Draft Directions for Non-Banking Financial Company - Account Aggregator
- The Reserve Bank of India on 3 March 2016 released Non-Banking Financial Company - Account Aggregator Directions, 2016.
- The NBFC-AA Directions will put in place the regulatory framework to allow a new kind of Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC), which could act as an account aggregator.
- The announcement of draft directions is in tune with July 2015 announcement of the RBI regarding creation of a separate category of NBFC called Non-Banking Financial Company - Account Aggregator (NBFC-AA) to provide account aggregation services.
Highlights of NBFC-AA Directions, 2016
- Only companies registered with the Reserve Bank as NBFC – AA will be able to undertake the business of an account aggregator.
- Entities being regulated by other financial sector regulators and aggregating only those accounts relating to the financial assets of that particular sector will not need to register with the Reserve Bank.
- The Net Owned Fund of such companies should not be less than 2 crore rupees.
- An account aggregator will not be able to undertake any other business other than the business of account aggregator.
- Business of an account aggregator will entirely be Information Technology (IT) driven.
- Initially, only financial assets whose records are stored electronically and are under the regulation of the financial sector regulators, namely, RBI, SEBI, IRDA, and PFRDA shall be considered for aggregation.
IFC launched 300 million rupee Uridashi Masala Bonds in Japan
- International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, on 1 March 2016 launched its first Uridashi Masala Bond. The bonds are worth 300 million rupees and will be utilised to promote private sector development in India.
- The three-year Uridashi Masala Bond is Japan-specific and builds on IFC’s Masala bond Program.
- While Masala bonds are rupee-denominated instruments sold only to offshore investors, Uridashi bonds are sold to Japanese household investors.
- Earlier, in November 2014, the IFC issued first-ever Masala Bonds in London. The bonds were worth 10 billion rupee and listed in the London Stock Exchange.
Prime Minister launched Setu Bharatam project to make National Highways free of Railway crossings
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 4 March 2016 launched the Setu Bharatam project. The project aims to make all national highways free of Railway crossings by 2019.
- Under the project, 208 places have been identified for construction of rail over-bridges (ROB) or underpasses. Nearly 10200 crore rupees will be spent on it.
The details of 208 ROBs are as follows in descending order
- Andhra Pradesh - 33
- West Bengal - 22
- Bihar - 20
- Karnataka - 17
- Maharashtra & Assam - 12 each
- Jharkhand - 11
- Punjab & Haryana - 10 each
- Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu & Uttar Pradesh - 9 each
- Gujarat - 8
- Madhya Pradesh -6
- Chattisgarh & Himachal Pradesh - 5 each
- Kerala & Odisha - 4 each
- Utarakhand - 2
- Detailed Project Reports have already been received for 73 ROBs and of these 64 ROBs are likely to be sanctioned with an estimated cost of 5600 crore rupees by the end of financial year 2015-16.
- As per Road and transport Ministry, there are around 1500 bridges that are over 50 to 60 years old. The Ministry has prepared a plan to demolish such bridges and rebuild new ones with more capacity. The cost of rebuilding the old bridges is expected to be about 30000 crore rupees.
Flipkart launched its own digital wallet Flipkart Money
- Flipkart on 3 March 2016 launched its own digital wallet Flipkart Money that can be used for Flipkart only transactions.
- It aims to have a more organized method of payment and cutting significant costs related to handling cash on product returns.
- Flipkart Money was launched on the company's Android app, where users can hold a balance of 10000 rupees at a time.
- Cash can be withdrawn from the wallet to the cards or the bank account.
Maha forms panel to track MoUs signed at Make in India week
- The Maharashtra government has formed a high-powered committee under Chief Secretary Swadheen Kshatriya that will ensure proper implementation of MoUs signed during the 'Make in India' week here.
- The state government had hosted the Make in India week from February 13-18 in the megapolis jointly organised by Maharashtra government, Development of Industry Policy and Promotion (DIPP) and Government of India.
- As part of the event, the Maharashtra government inked 2,594 MoUs entailing investments of Rs 7.94 lakh crore which could possibly generate employment for over 30 lakh people in the state.
- A total of 2,097 MoUs were signed with Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) and large industries, and 20 in Skill Development sector.
Union Government signed Agreement to provide a loan of 1000 crore rupees to FACT
- Union Government on 3 March 2016 signed a memorandum of agreement (MoA) to provide a loan of 1000 crore rupees to the Fertilizers and Chemicals Travancore (FACT) Limited, a Central Public Sector Undertaking (CPSU).
- As per this MoA, FACT will be getting a loan of 1000 crore rupees, to be repaid with interest within a period of five years, with a moratorium of one year.
- The loan will be provided with an aim to revive the organisation which has been facing financial crunch for more than a decade. This loan will ease its liquidity crisis. The new resources will be helpful in clearing long pending dues of the Company, and facilitate much needed working capital, as well as for augmenting production.
CCS cleared proposal to acquire two more AWACS
- Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) on 1 March 2016 cleared the proposal to acquire two more Phalcon Airborne Early Warning and Control Systems (AWACS). These surveillance aircraft will be bought at an expense of 7500 crore rupees under a tripartite agreement with Israel and Russia.
- The decision to this effect was taken ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Israel later in 2016. His visit to Israel will be the first by an Indian Prime Minister.
TCS chief N Chandrasekaran appointed to board of Reserve Bank
- Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) CEO and managing director Natarajan Chandrasekaran and two others were on Friday appointed as non-official directors to the board of Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
- The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC), headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved appointment of former Chief Secretary of Gujarat Sudhir Mankad as part-time non-official director on the central board of the RBI for a period of four years, an order issued by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said.
- Mr Mankad was Chief Secretary of Gujarat from April 2005 to August 2007 when Narendra Modi was the Chief Minister of the state.
- Besides Mr Mankad, Mr Chandrasekaran of TCS has also been appointed as part-time non-official director on the RBI board, it said.
- Bharat Narotam Doshi, non-executive chairman of Mahindra & Mahindra, is the third part-time non-official director on the central board of the bank, the department said.
Vineet Taneja resigned as CEO of Micromax Informatics Limited
- Vineet Taneja on 1 March 2016 resigned as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Micromax Informatics Ltd. Taneja’s departure was the second high-profile exit from the company with a span of one year.
- Earlier, in October 2015, Bharti Airtel CEO Sanjay Kapoor resigned as the chairman of the company.
- Taneja joined Micromax from Samsung Electronics’ Indian business arm in 2014. His appointment came in the backdrop of company’s plans to expand its operations abroad.
Awards & Honors –
Manoj Kumar to be conferred Dadasaheb Phalke Award for the year 2015
- Veteran Film Actor and Director Manoj Kumar will be conferred the 47th Dadasaheb Phalke Award for the year 2015.
- A five member jury consisted of Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle, Salim Khan, Nitin Mukesh and Anup Jalota unanimously recommended Kumar for the prestigious Award.
- Manoj Kumar is remembered for his films Hariyali Aur Raasta, Woh Kaun Thi, Himalaya Ki God Mein, Do Badan, Upkaar, Patthar Ke Sanam, Neel Kamal, Purab Aur Paschim, Roti Kapda Aur Makaan, and Kranti. He is known for acting in and directing films with patriotic themes.
World's costliest train station opened in New York at 9/11 site
- World's most expensive train station, the World Trade Centre Transportation Hub, opened on 3 March 2016 in New York, the United States of America.
- Santiago Calatrava, the Spanish-Swiss architect who unveiled his ambitious design 12 years ago, removed a barrier at the entrance of the Oculus, a giant oval hall with walls of steel ribs and glass.
- Built next to the site of the destroyed Twin Towers, the World Trade Centre Transportation Hub is expected to eventually serve more than 200000 daily commuters.
- Initially budgeted at 2 billion US dollars, the station ended up costing 3.85 billion US dollars that earned it the title of the most expensive station in the world.
UNHCR, UNICEF launched Blue Dot hubs to protect children & families on move across Europe
- UNHCR, UNICEF on 26 February 2016 launched a Twenty Child and Family Support Hubs, known as Blue Dots. These support centers will acts as a special support centers for children and families along the most frequently used migration routes in Europe.
- They will also help in protecting the growing numbers of children and others with specific needs arriving in Europe.
National Safety Day and National Safety Week observed
- National Safety Day was observed across India on 4 March 2016. The day is annually organised by the National Safety Council (NSC) to commemorate its establishment and enhance the safety awareness among people.
- It is a national movement carried out on annual basis to prevent and lessen the loss of life including various human being problems and their financial loss through availing them with safety, health and environment related support services.
- National Safety Council of India is a self-governing body (non profit and nongovernmental organization for public service) which was established on 4 March 1966 under the Societies Act in Mumbai, having over 8000 members.
India wins two golds in World TT Team Championship
- Indian men’s and women’s team scripted history by clinching the gold medals at the World Table Tennis Team Championship with superb victories over Luxemburg and Brazil respectively here on Saturday.
- Indian eves beat Luxemburg 3-1 in the event final of the Second Division, while their male counterparts overcame a stiff Brazil 3-2 here.
- India had sealed their entry in the Champions Division last night after reaching the finals.
- In the women’s team final, Mouma Das gave a winning start to her team when she defeated Danielle Konsbruck 3-0 in a quick bust. Manika Batra then put behind yesterday’s loss and began with a bang, leading 2-0 against Tessy Gonderinger, who managed to grab the third game. However, Manika clinched the fourth game to win 3-1 and provide India with a 2-0 lead.
Mumbai U-23 team clinched CK Nayudu Trophy 2015-16
- The Mumbai under-23 team on 3 March 2016 clinched the Col CK Nayudu Trophy by defeating Madhya Pradesh at the Holkar Stadium, Indore.
- Mumbai bowled out Madhya Pradesh for 442 and took a first innings lead of 135 runs to be declared the winner.
- This was Mumbai’s second big title of the season, having pocketed the Ranji Trophy for the 41st time earlier.
FIH promoted Napoleon Singh as international Umpire
- The International Hockey Federation (FIH) on 3 March 2016 promoted Hockey India national-level umpire Napoleon Singh as the International Outdoor Umpire.
- The FIH took the decision after seeing his performance in the recently-concluded 12th South Asian Games 2016, held at Guwahati from 5 to 16 February 2016.
- Napoleon started his career as an umpire from Manipur in the third Hockey India Junior Women National Championship 2013 held at Ranchi, Jharkhand.
Books & Authors –
Fixed! Cash and Corruption in Cricket authored by Journalist Shantanu Guha Ray
- Fixed! Cash and Corruption in Cricket authored by journalist Shantanu Guha Ray was in news in the first week of March 2016. It examines the allegations of corruption against players, cricket administrators and bookies alike.
- The book rifled through the underbelly of cricket, analysed the spot-fixing and nexus of bookies and punters with those in the corridors of power, mysterious deaths and issues that threatened the gentleman's game.
Former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno Agitok Sangma died
- Former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno Agitok Sangma died on 4 March 2016. He was 68 years old. He is survived by daughter Agatha Sangma, former Minister of State in the UPA-led Government and Conrad Sangma, the Leader of the Opposition in the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly.
- In independent India’s history, he was the first tribal person to hold the post of cabinet minister in 1995. He was also the first tribal person to become the Lok Sabha Speaker in 1996.
Film Archivist PK Nair died
- Indian film archivist and film scholar Paramesh Krishnan Nair died on 4 March 2016. He was 82.
- He was the founder and former director of the National Film Archive of India (NFAI) in 1964.
- In 2012, Celluloid Man, an award-winning documentary was made on his life and works, by Shivendra Singh Dungarpur. Later it won two National Awards at the 60th National Film Awards, including Best Biographical Film and Best Editing.