Friday, May 20, 2016

Current Affairs Update – 20th May, 2016

Hello and welcome to exampundit. Here are the important Current Affairs of 20th May, 2016. These are important for the upcoming UIIC AO 2016, SBI PO & SBI Clerk Mains 2016 Exams.


Current Affairs at a Glance – 20th May, 2016
  1. Apple Inc on Thursday signed an MoU with a city-based engineering college for women, G.Narayanamma Institute of Technology & Science for Women, choosing the institution as a centre for excellence, the third in the world, for launching MAC lab-based training.
  2. India’s leading passenger vehicle maker, Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Chhattisgarh Transport Department to set up a new Institute of Driving & Traffic Research at Naya Raipur, the state capital.
  3. Telenor Financial Services, IDFC Bank and Dilip Shanghvi on Friday jointly announced the withdrawal of the ongoing efforts to form a payments bank venture in India.
  4. President Pranab Mukherjee on 19 May 2016 inaugurated an Intelligent Operations Centre (IOC) in Rashtrapati Bhavan. President Mukherjee also launched a Mobile App Monitor for transformation of President’s Estate into a smart township.
  5. The Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare J P Nadda on 19 May 2016 launched the Centre for Environmental Health in New Delhi. The centre was launched to assess the impact of environment-related problems like air pollution, climate change, pesticide use and sanitation on health.
  6. Senior CPI(M) leader and politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan is set to become the next Chief Minister of Kerala.
  7. Former Finance Secretary Ratan P Watal has been appointed as Principle Adviser for social sector in Niti Aayog.
  8. Tsai Ing-wen sworn-in as Taiwan's first woman president
  9. Indian journalist and Councillor Philip Abraham was on 19 May 2016 elected unanimously as the Deputy Mayor of Loughton town in the United Kingdom.
  10. An Indian-American biotechnologist Rupa Iyer was on 19 May 2016 awarded with the University of Houston’s Distinguished Leadership in Teaching Excellence Award, the highest teaching award of United States.
  11. Indian American professor Rakesh K Jain on 19 May 2016 received the US National Medal of Science from the US President Barack Obama.



Industry/Banking –

Apple signs MoU with Hyderabad engineering college on MAC lab


  • Apple Inc on Thursday signed an MoU with a city-based engineering college for women, G.Narayanamma Institute of Technology & Science for Women, choosing the institution as a centre for excellence, the third in the world, for launching MAC lab-based training.
  • Apple chief executive officer Tim Cook and his 10-member team spent 40 minutes at the college at Shaikpet near Gachibowli. As part of the MoU, Apple contributed a research-oriented App development MAC lab with 33 high-end Apple computers and a projector.
  • Forty-four students (four each from 11  branches of engineering) were selected, on the basis of their academic performance, for a year-long training programme. The students will be imparted training for eight hours a week for 10 weeks at Apple’s new facility on Mac iOS and related future  Apps, and they will do a project for Apple later.


Maruti Suzuki signs MoU with Chattishgarh Transport Department for IDTR in Raipur


  • India’s leading passenger vehicle maker, Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Chhattisgarh Transport Department to set up a new Institute of Driving & Traffic Research at Naya Raipur, the state capital.
  • The MoU was signed by O P Pal, Adl. Commissioner of Transport & Jt. Secretary, Government of Chhattisgarh and Mahesh Rajoria, Associate Vice President Driving Training, Maruti Suzuki India Limited. Present at the signing ceremony were Rajesh Munat, Hon’ble Transport Minister, xyz, Secretary (transport), Govt. of Chhattisgarh, dignitaries from the government and officers from Maruti Suzuki.
  • As per the MoU, Chattisgarh government will provide the land and infrastructure for the project, while Maruti Suzuki, with an experience in imparting safe driving training for over 16 years will manage and run the facility. Maruti Suzuki will provide training equipment vehicles and simulators and skilled trainers.
  • The main objective of the IDTR will be to promote road safety in Chhattisgarh through awareness, education, and training amongst road users. Maruti Suzuki will conduct refresher for heavy motor vehicle drivers, commercial vehicle drivers and drivers of vehicles carrying hazardous goods at a very nominal fees. Maruti Suzuki will also organize road safety awareness campaigns for children.


Dilip Shanghvi, IDFC Bank, Telenor drop plans to set up payments bank


  • Telenor Financial Services , IDFC Bank and Dilip Shanghvi on Friday jointly announced the withdrawal of the ongoing efforts to form a payments bank venture in India.
  • The decision, collectively made by the three partners, will be communicated to Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Consequently, the payment bank licence will not be pursued.
  • "Telenor Financial Services and IDFC Bank have rich experience from offering financial services and the intention of the JV was to combine our expertise to launch a robust payment bank service in India. Following the mutual decision to withdraw these plans, the payment bank license will not be pursued", Dilip Shanghvi said on behalf of Dilip Shanghvi Family & Associates (DSA) in an official statement.
  • Last September, Dilip Shanghvi as lead applicant along with Telenor Financial Services and IDFC Bank was granted in-principle licence by RBI to form a payments bank in India.
  • Over the past eight months, representatives of these three partners had worked together to establish relevant frameworks and a governance structure for the proposed joint venture (JV).


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India –

President Pranab Mukherjee inaugurates Intelligent Operations Centre and launches Mobile App Monitor


  • President Pranab Mukherjee on 19 May 2016 inaugurated an Intelligent Operations Centre (IOC) in Rashtrapati Bhavan.
  • President Mukherjee also launched a Mobile App Monitor for transformation of President’s Estate into a smart township.

About Intelligent Operations Centre
  • The IOC is a software solution designed by IBM.
  • It helps collect and make sense of the rich data streaming in from several sources within the Estate to provide intelligent insights.
  • It offers integrated data visualization, near real-time collaboration and deep analytics that will help agencies prepare for problems, coordinate and manage response efforts and enhance efficiency of services.


JP Nadda launches Centre for Environmental Health to assess environmental impact on health


  • The Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare J P Nadda on 19 May 2016 launched the Centre for Environmental Health in New Delhi.
  • The centre was launched to assess the impact of environment-related problems like air pollution, climate change, pesticide use and sanitation on health.

Key highlights related to Centre for Environmental Health
  • It is a joint initiative of the Public Health Foundation of India and the Tata Institute of Social Science.
  • The centre will conduct research across a range of environmental health issues, including chemical exposure, water and hygiene.
  • Its mandate also includes capacity-building, advocacy, outreach and remedial issues.
  • The research component of the centre is going to be an important aspect for the government to follow.


Appointments –

Pinarayi Vijayan to be next Kerala CM


  • Senior CPI(M) leader and politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan is set to become the next Chief Minister of Kerala. A decision to this effect was taken by the state committee of the party that met here this morning.
  • This will be formally announced later in the evening, sources in the Left Democratic Front (LDF) said.
  • The central leadership, it is learnt, has extended its concurrence with this decision.
  • Contender V.S. Achuthanandan, Leader of the Opposition in the outgoing assembly and himself a former chief minister, has been sounded on this, sources said.
  • Achuthanandan was specially invited to the meeting of the state committee for the purpose.
  • Pinarayi's choice was a foregone conclusion after the LDF won a close to two-thirds majority in the elections.


Ex-finance secretary Ratan P Watal appointed Principal Advisory in Niti Aayog


  • Former Finance Secretary Ratan P Watal has been appointed as Principle Adviser for social sector in Niti Aayog.
  • He has been appointed to the post for three years, an order issued by Department of Personnel and Training said.
  • The new appointment for Watal comes a fortnight after his two-month extended tenure ended in April. He was to retire in February. However, Watal later got a two-month extension as Finance Secretary.
  • Watal, a retired IAS officer of Andhra Pradesh cadre, had been Finance Secretary between August last year and April this year.


Tsai Ing-wen inaugurated as Taiwan's first woman president


  • Taiwan has inaugurated its first female president.
  • Tsai Ing-wen will confront major challenges in her new role, including navigating what seem certain to be increasingly fractious relations with Beijing and rejuvenating the island’s flagging economy.
  • Tsai took the oath of office Friday at the Presidential Office Building in the capital Taipei before a national flag and portrait of Sun Yat-sen, the founder of the Republic of China that relocated to Taiwan in 1949 as the communists swept to power on the Chinese mainland.
  • China claims Taiwan as its own territory and has responded to Tsai’s election by intensifying pressure on the island with military exercises, diplomatic moves and cross-border deportations.


Indian journalist Philip Abraham elected as Deputy Mayor in United Kingdom

  • Indian journalist and Councillor Philip Abraham was on 19 May 2016 elected unanimously as the Deputy Mayor of Loughton town in the United Kingdom. Councillor Abraham was presented with the Deputy Mayor’s Badge by Carol Davis, the newly-elected mayor.
  • V K Krishna Menon was the first person from Kerala to become a Councillor in Britain. He was a Labour Councillor for the Borough of St Pancras from 1934 to 1939.


Resignations –

Cairn India MD and CEO Mayank Ashar resigns


  • Cairn India, the petroleum exploration arm of London-listed Vedanta Resources, on Friday announced that its managing director and chief executive (CEO) Mayank Ashar has resigned for ‘personal reasons’ with effect from June 5, 2016.
  • Ashar will be replaced by the company’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Sudhir Mathur as acting CEO who will continue to work closely with the leadership team in managing the business under the guidance of the Board, the company said in a statement.


Awards & Honors –

Indian-American Rupa Iyer awarded with Highest Teaching Award in US


  • An Indian-American biotechnologist Rupa Iyer was on 19 May 2016 awarded with the University of Houston’s Distinguished Leadership in Teaching Excellence Award, the highest teaching award of United States.
  • Iyer was awarded for her sustained and significant contributions to education. She is an Associate Dean at Research and Graduate Studies at the University of Houston’s College of Technology.


Indian-American Rakesh K Jain received US National Medal of Science 2015 from Barack Obama


  • Indian American professor Rakesh K Jain on 19 May 2016 received the US National Medal of Science from the US President Barack Obama.
  • He received the honour along with 16 other winners of the National Medal of Science and National Medal of Technology and Innovation at a White House ceremony.
  • Jain is a professor at Harvard Medical School and Director of the Tumour Biology Laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital.
  • He was selected for the award in December 2015. The award function was initially scheduled for 22 January 2016 but was postponed due to a major snow storm.







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