Hello and welcome to ExamPundit. Here are the Important Current Affairs of 6th and 7th March, 2016.
ICICI Bank launches one year work-from-home for women staff
- ICICI Bank has launched iWork@home an initiative that allows women employees to work from home for up to one year. Chanda Kochhar, MD & CEO, ICICI Bank explained that this could be extended for more than one year based on the requirements. This initiative allows female employees to have access to their required operating systems in a safe and secure manner, that creates a seamless office-like environment.
- The technology platform for this programme has been developed in-house by ICICI Bank in partnership with students from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi. Kochhar added that women in a particular lifestage that makes them quit the organisation will now be enabled to still work with the Bank by creating a work atmosphere and ecosystem at their homes as well. To ensure that data security and privacy is upheld, there will be a facial recognition technology used that scans the face to ascertain there is no intruder into the office system.
- Women in all roles, except those in direct customer facing roles, would be eligible for this initiative based on their lifestage needs. These would include young mothers, expectant mothers, those suffering from medical conditions among others. Kochhar said that the aim was to give a stronger support system to manage the challenge.
Bajaj Power signs agreement with Indian Railways
- Bajaj Power Generation Company has signed an agreement with the Railways for electrification of the Lalitpur-Udaipura rail section under the public private partnership (PPP).
- The Railways would complete the electrification work in a year's time under its customer funding scheme, which would cost nearly Rs 47 crore.
- The electrified rail section is expected to facilitate uninterrupted coal supply to its plant and also help running of fast passenger trains in the area.
- BPGC is setting up a 1,980 megawatt (mw) thermal power plant in Lalitpur district of Uttar Pradesh.
Haryana first state to partner Centre for rail infra
- Haryana is likely to become the first state to enter into a partnership with the Ministry of Railways to create railway infrastructure in the state.
- Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, while addressing the state's maiden investment summit organised in Gurgaon today, said that a Special Purpose Vehicle would be formed to tap the syneries of states across India for accelerating the growth of railway infrastructure. Haryana is the first to give consent to this initiative.
- Inviting both, domestic investors and those from countries like China, Japan and Korea, Prabhu said 400 railway stations in India need upgradation and the participation of private sector was imperative to achieve the targets of infrastructure development.
Germany to develop Kochi, Coimbatore, Bhubaneswar as smart cities
- Germany will partner with India to develop Kochi, Bhubaneswar and Coimbatore as smart cities.
- “Germany would contribute to India’s smart city programme and will help develop the cities of Kochi(Kerala), Bhubaneswar (Odisha) and Coimbatore(Tamil Nadu) as smart cities,” State Secretary in Germany’s Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety, Gunther Adler, told reporters here.
- The three cities are among the 20 cities which are to be developed as smart cities, announced by Urban Development Ministry in January this year.
- Germany had earlier set up a six-member joint committee with India to identify the cities which it could develop as smart cities.
- The committee had two representatives of Urban Development Ministry, one from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, and three from Germany.
- Germany is India’s second largest bilateral donor with a record commitment of €1.5 billion (Rs 11,0000 crore) agreed last year, Ney said.
- Meanwhile, India and the US have also agreed on formulating action plans for development of smart cities in Allahabad, Ajmer and Visakhapatnam.
CBDT sets up dedicated structure for monitoring taxpayer services
- The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has set up a dedicated structure for delivery and monitoring of tax payer services in the income tax department.
- Two separate directorates –Directorate of Tax Payer Services I (‘TPS-I’) and Directorate of Tax Payer Services II(‘TPS-II’) have been set up by the CBDT.
- Member (Revenue and Tax payer services) in the CBDT will oversee the delivery and monitoring of taxpayer services under the new structure.
- Together, these Directorates will be responsible for delivery and monitoring of taxpayers services in the field offices and e-services deliverable through various electronic platforms of the Department.
- They will oversee and co-ordinate all matters relating to grievances of taxpayers and ensure their timely redressal.
- These Directorates will report to the Member (R and TPS), CBDT through the Principal Director General of Income Tax (Administration), an official release said.
To check black money flow, RBI to share FDI-related info with IB, RAW
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will share FDI-related information with the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) — to check black money from entering the country.
- The decision was taken during a recent meeting of a government group, headed by Revenue Secretary, to check economic crimes. The move comes after Cabinet Secretariat expressed concern over companies in tax havens investing in the country, official sources said.
- The Cabinet Secretariat suggested that Central Economic Intelligence Bureau (CEIB) under the Finance Ministry should maintain a database of such entities and investments, a move which was later rejected, they said.
- During the meeting of “Working Group on Intelligence Apparatus”, representatives of the IB felt that it is important to have the information. It was decided that the RBI should share with the IB and Cabinet Secretariat, information on FDI, which actually enters the country, the sources said.
Thomas Cook India inks pact with Western Union, DCB Bank
- Travel solutions provider Thomas Cook India has inked a pact with Western Union Business Solutions and DCB Bank to facilitate international trade payments by small-and medium-sized enterprises.
- Western Union Business Solutions is a business segment of the Western Union Company.
- Thomas Cook India aims to assist small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in India with their trade payments across borders, the company said.
Air India operates 'world's longest all-women flight
- National carrier Air India today said it flew the "world's longest" all-women operated and supported flight from the national capital to San Francisco.
- The flight, which travelled a distance of around 14,500 kilometre in close to 17 hours, was operated as part of International Women's Day celebrations.
- The non-stop Delhi-San Francisco flight took off from here on March 6.
- The flight was under the command of Kshamta Bajpayee and Shubhangi Singh, along with First Officers Ramya Kirti Gupta and Amrit Namdhari.
- The carrier has about 3,800 women employees, including pilots, cabin crew, engineers, technicians, doctors, security personnel and executives.
Two-day National Conference of Women Legislators held
- A two-day National Conference of Women Legislators held in New Delhi from 5 March to 6 March 2016 with theme Women Legislators-Building Resurgent India.
- The conference organised by the Parliament was inaugurated by the President Pranab Mukherjee. Speaker of Bangladesh Shirin Chaudhary attended the conference and was the Chairperson of the Plenary Session.
President Mukherjee presented Standard to 119 HU & Colours to 28 ED of IAF
- President of India and the Supreme Commander of Indian Armed Forces Pranab Mukherjee on 4 March 2016 presented President’s Standard to 119 Helicopter Unit (HU) and President’s Colours to 28 Equipment Depot (ED) of the Indian Air Force. The awards were given away at Air Force Station in Jamnagar, Gujarat.
- Indian Air Force's operational squadrons become eligible for award of Presidential Standard after completion of 18 years of service to the Nation. The selection is based on the unit's performance and achievements during peace as well as hostilities. The honour is an acknowledgement of the meritorious service rendered by the units.
Yes Bank appointed Ashok Chawla as Non-executive Director
- Yes Bank Ltd has informed BSE that the Board of Directors of the Bank have on March 5, 2016 approved the appointment of Mr. Ashok Chawla as Additional (Non-Executive) Director of the Bank with immediate effect.
- The Board of Directors have further approved the proposal to seek approval from Reserve Bank of India for appointment of Mr. Ashok Chawla as future Non-executive, Part-time Chairman of the Bank, upon expiry of term of the current Chairperson in October 2016.
India won Asia Cricket Cup for record Sixth time
- Indian cricket team led by Mahendra Singh Dhoni won the Asia Cup for the record sixth time. 2016 Asia Cup was played from 24 February to 6 March 2016.
- To win the trophy, India defeated Bangladesh by eight wickets in the final played at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Mirpur, Bangladesh.
- Batting first, Bangladesh made 120 runs by losing 5 wickets in rain truncated 15 over while India chased down the target by losing two wickets and seven balls to spare.
- Shikhar Dhawan was adjudged Man of the Match for his 44-balls 60 runs.
- This was the first time that Asia Cup was played in T20 format and the countries that played in 2016 Asia Cup were India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and United Arab Emirates (UAE).
- Sri Lanka has won the Asia Cup title five times including the 2014 Asia Cup and Pakistan has won it two times.
Awards & Honors –
Renowned Dogri poetess Padma Sachdev awarded Krutitava Smagra Samman
- Renowned Dogri poetess and writer Padma Sachdev was 6 March 2016 was awarded Krutitava Smagra Samman for the year 2015.
- The award was given by Bharatiya's Bhasha Parishad in Kolkata for her outstanding contribution in literature and great service to Dogri Language.
- She was presented with the award by the West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi. The Award carries an amount of one lakh rupees, a shawl and citation.
Sirshendu De selected for Innovation Award 2016 for developing laterite based arsenic water filter
- Prof. Sirshendu De, Head of the Chemical Engineering department of the IIT, Kharagpur on 4 March 2016 was selected for the Innovation Award 2016 given by the Indian Desalination Association (IDA), South Zone.
- He was selected for the award for developing an ultra low-cost eco-friendly laterite based arsenic water filter.
- The cost-effective filter would provide safe drinking water in areas contaminated with arsenic. The indigenous filter, made from naturally occurring red laterite soil, is capable of absorbing arsenic to the extent of 32mg per gram.
Ray Tomlinson, the inventor of E-mail inventor passed away
- Raymond Samuel Tomlinson, the inventor of E-mail and the man who picked @symbol for addresses, passed away in Washington on 6 March 2016. He was 74.
- He was an American computer scientist who became a cult figure for his invention in 1971 of a program for APRANET, the internet predecessor that allowed people to send person to person messages to other computer users on other servers.
- He was working at Bolt Beranek and Newman – now Raytheon BBN Technologies – when he made his email breakthrough
Prince of Tides author, Pat Conroy, died
- US novelist Pat Conroy, who wrote several acclaimed novels and memoirs, died on 4 March 2016 in Beaufort, South Carolina. He was 70.
- He was suffering from pancreatic cancer.
- Two of his novels, The Prince of Tides and The Great Santini, were made into Oscar-nominated films. He is recognized as a leading figure of late-20th century Southern literature.