Hello and welcome to exampundit . Here are the Important Current Affairs of 24th November, 2016. These are important for the upcoming IBPS Clerk, IPPB Mains and NICL AO Mains Exam 2016.
SBI Enters Unified Payments Interface Arena With SBI Pay
- India’s largest public sector bank State Bank of India has launched its Unified Payments Interface enabled app called “SBI Pay”.
- The app is available only on Android platform as of now and allows users to pay or collect money from any phone number or bank account linked to any UPI app, SBI said in a media statement.
- The bank will add the facility to make merchant payments and enhance transaction limits on the app in “due course.”
- The bank said that the iOS app for the same would be rolled out “as and when” National Payments Corporation of India issues specifications for the platform. However, private players like ICICI Bank Ltd. have managed to integrate UPI into their existing iOS apps.
- With this launch, SBI becomes the 18th bank in the country to go live with its UPI app, according to the NPCI website. The total number of banks accepting UPI payments now stands at 30.
- UPI was launched in August this year to allow participating banks, merchants and consumers to transact with minimal effort and in real time. The UPI infrastructure allows customers to pay or collect money from people or merchants by just putting in their virtual payment address, which is linked to a mobile number and a bank account.
- The UPI infrastructure is built over the existing Immediate Payments Service or IMPS, which allows real-time transfer of money.
IDBI Bank launches CASH@POS service at Mumbai Airport
- IDBI Bank, as part of its continuous initiatives to provide service and convenience to the customers, has launched IDBI Bank CASH @POS at the Mumbai Airport on November 20, 2016.
- Under this first of its kind facility, air travelers would be able to swipe their Visa/ Rupay Debit Cards linked to their Savings Bank Account and the bank officials would hand over the cash to them by completing the CASH @POS transaction.
- Presently this facility can only be used to withdraw an amount of Rs 2,000 per Debit Card per day as per the mandate of RBI for cash withdrawal at POS.
- Travelers who are customers of IDBI Bank and select other banks, that are enabled for CASH @POS would be benefitting by this service. Through this service IDBI Bank has opened another channel to ease the load of cash dispensation at various banking outlets.
YES Bank, Gujarat Roadways join hands to digitise bus travel payments
- YES Bank, the fifth largest private sector bank, on Thursday announced a partnership with Gujarat State Road Transport Corporation (GSRTC) to digitise payment of bus tickets for its customers.
- For this the bank will install over 125 points of sale (PoS) terminals to facilitate booking through credit and debit cards at all GSRTC bus depots. The bank is already live with 50 terminals and will set up the remaining in the next couple of weeks as part of the first phase of implementation.
- The initiative will cover all municipal corporation locations and multiple cities including Ahmedabad, Rajkot, Vadodara and towns including Bhuj, Dahod, Palanpur and Valsad.
- The installation of these terminals will support the ‘less-cash’ economy envisaged by the Centre and enhance convenience for bus passengers. Over 50 per cent of cash transactions are expected to shift to card transactions, thereby reducing cash usage, according to a press release.
- Vijay Nehra, VC & MD, GSRTC, said YES Bank has waived all transaction charges for customers and was not charging rentals to GSRTC as part of its efforts to encourage the transition to a cashless economy.
MoU singed to develop IT Park in East UP's Gorakhpur
- Uttar Pradesh Electronics Corporation (UPEC), an undertaking of UP government’s IT & Electronics department, and Software Technology Parks of India (STPI) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop an IT Park in Eastern UP’s Gorakhpur. The MoU was signed in presence of UP’s IT and Electronics Minister Manoj Kumar Pandey in Lucknow on Thursday.
- Addressing the gathering on this occasion, Pandey said this project aims to generate employment opportunities for about 15000 people. He added the IT Park project in Gorakhpur will soon attract rural BPOs, Start-ups and entrepreneurs. According to the minister, a good space is reserved startups in this park.
- The IT Park in Gorakhpur will be developed on 14500 square meter (3.58 acre) land. Gorakhpur Industrial Development Authority (GIDA) has provided land for this project. The work on this project is supposed to begin within three months.
LT Foods inks JV with Japanese snacks maker Kameda Seika
- Branded rice, staples and organic foods maker LT Foods has inked a 51:49 joint venture with leading Japanese snacking firm Kameda Seika, to sell rice-based snacks in India.
- The Rs 2,979-crore listed LT Foods, which makes Dawat packaged rice, staples and organic foods, along with Kameda Seika, will infuse a consolidated investment of $10 million in the joint venture in the first phase, Ashwani Arora, managing director of LT Foods told ET.
- The snacks will be available in stores by March-April ’17, and will steer clear of entry-level price points of Rs 5 and 10. Instead, the plan is to compete at high-margin points and sell in SEC-A and B markets.
IBBI notifies three sets of regulations under Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016
- The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board (IBBI) of India on 23 November 2016 notified three sets of regulations- (Insolvency Professional) Regulations, 2016; Regulations inter alia provide for registration, Regulation and oversight of insolvency professionals.
- These regulations were notified under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 and will come into effect from 29 November 2016.
- All these regulations provide for registration, regulation and oversight of insolvency professionals under the Code.
Individuals eligible for registration as an insolvency professional
- Advocates, Chartered Accountants, Company Secretaries and Cost Accountants with 10 years’ of practice or employment.
- A Graduate with 15 years of post-qualification managerial experience on passing the Limited Insolvency Examination.
- Any individual who has passed the National Insolvency Examination.
- However, Advocates, Chartered Accountants, Company Secretaries and Cost Accountants with more than 15 years of practice experience can register without any examination till 31 December 2016 and such registration shall be valid for a limited period of six months.
- There will be National Insolvency Examination and Limited Insolvency Examination. The syllabus and format of these examinations will be published on the website of the Board at least one month before the examination.
- A limited liability partnership, a registered partnership firm or a company can be recognised as an insolvency professional entity if a majority of the partners or a majority of the whole-time directors are registered as insolvency professionals under the Code.
- An insolvency professional can use the organisational resources of a recognised insolvency professional entity subjected to the condition that the entity as well as the insolvency professional will be liable for all acts of omission or commission of its partners as insolvency professionals.
CCEA approves setting up of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas in 62 districts
- The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 23 November 2016 approved the setting up of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya (JNV) in 62 uncovered districts with an outlay of Rs 2871 crore.
- The expenses for this purpose will be Rs 109.53 crore during the 12th Plan with the total outlay of Rs 2761.56 crore from the year 2017-18 to 2024-25.
- It is expected that nearly 35000 students will be benefitted from these JNVs.
Highlights of the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya (JNV)
- It will provide good quality modern education to the talented children notably from rural areas.
- A full-fledged JNV provides employment to 47 people and in view of that, 62 JNVs will provide direct permanent employment to 2914 individuals.
- JNVs are residential and co-educational in nature, thereby, all the staff and students will reside in the Vidyalaya campus.
- Due to its residential nature, JNVs will also generate opportunities for the local vendors for supply of food, consumables, furniture, teaching material, etc.
- It will also create large opportunity for local service providers such as barber, tailor cobbler, manpower for housekeeping and security services.
Union Cabinet approves introduction of Merchant Shipping Bill, 2016
- Union Cabinet on 23 November 2016 approved the introduction of Merchant Shipping Bill, 2016 in the Parliament. Simultaneously, the cabinet also approved repealing of the Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 and the Coasting Vessels Act, 1838.
- The Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 has been amended 17 times between 1966 and 2014 resulting in an increase in the number of sections to more than 560 sections. However, these provisions have been shortened to 280 sections in the Bill.
Provisions of the Bill
- It allows substantially-owned vessels and vessels on Bare Boat-cum-Demise (BBCD) to be registered as Indian flag vessels.
- It recognises Indian controlled tonnage as a separate category.
- It provides for issuing the licences to Indian flag vessels for coastal operation and for port clearance by the Customs authorities.
- It directs owners of vessels to take insurance of crew engaged on vessels including fishing, sailing, etc. This applies for the vessels whose net tonnage is less than 15 tons.
Portuguese PM Antonio Costa to be Chief Guest at Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
- The Union Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, on 21 November 2016 announced that Antonio Costa, the Prime Minister of Portugal, accepted the proposal be the Chief Guest at the 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas.
- On the other hand, Michael Ashwin Satyandre Adhin, Vice President of the Republic of Suriname will be the Special Guest at the Youth Pravasi Bharatiya Divas.
- The Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is scheduled to be held from 7 January to 9 January 2017 at Bengaluru in Karnataka. The Youth Pravasi Bharatiya Divas will be held on 7 January 2017.
Lists & Indexes –
ITU released Measuring the Information Society Report 2016, India ranked 135th
- UN International Telecommunication Union (ITU) released the 2016 edition of the Measuring the Information Society Report. The report was launched on 22 November 2016 during the World Telecommunication/ICT Indicators Symposium (WTIS).
- WTIS was held in Botswana, South Africa from 21 November to 23 November 2016.
- The ITU index prepared after surveying 175 economies of the world was topped by the Republic of Korea with IDI of 8.84. The Sub-Saharan Africa’s Niger with an IDI of 1.07 ranked lowest.
- India was placed at 138th rank with IDI score of 2.69. In 2015, it stood at 135th position with IDI score of 2.50.
Awards & Honors –
Malini Subramaniam wins 2016 CPJ International Press Freedom Award
- Indian journalist Malini Subramaniam on 23 November 2016 won the International Press Freedom Awards given by Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.
- Along with Subramaniam, three other journalists won the prestigious award. They are Mahmoud Abou Zeid from Egypt, Can Dündar from Turkey and Oscar Martinez from El Salvador.
- The CPJ chose these four journalists as “they have risked their freedom – and their lives – to report to their societies and the global community about critical news events.”
- Subramaniam reports on buses by police and security forces, sexual violence against women, the jailing of minors, shutdown of schools, extrajudicial killings, and threats against journalists in the Bastar region in Chhattisgarh.
Trump names South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as UN envoy
- Donald Trump, the President-elect of the United States of America (USA), on 23 November 2016 named South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as the US Ambassador to the United Nations. With this, Haley becomes the first non-white female cabinet-level official to be appointed within the Trump administration.
- She will be serving Carolina as its Governor until her nomination is not confirmed by the Senate.
- Besides Nikki Haley, President-elect Trump also named Betsy DeVos as education secretary of the country. DeVos is a billionaire education philanthropist and activist.
- While naming the two, Trump praised the two appointees. In a statement he said, ‘Haley was a proven deal maker and we look to be making plenty of deals’ and ‘Devos was a brilliant and passionate education advocate’.
Turkey to chair 2017 Energy Club of Shanghai Cooperation Organization
- Turkey will chair the Energy Club of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in 2017. With this, it became the first non full member country to be the chairman of a club in the organisation.
- Ankara's proposal for non-SCO member countries to host the term presidency of the Energy Club was accepted in a meeting on 22 November 2016.
- The nomination came after officials from Russia and China gave green signal to Ankara after the country’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pointed to the SCO as Turkey's alternative to the European Union.
24th APEC Summit concludes in Peru
- The 24th edition of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit concluded on 20 November 2016 in Lima, Peru. The summit ended with adoption of the 2016 Leaders Declaration.
- The summit also closed with a joint pledge to work toward a new free trade agreement that would include all 21 members as a path to “sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth.”
- The theme of the 24th APEC Summit was “Quality Growth and Human Development”. The architecture of Caral, an ancient city of Peru, served as the inspiration for the official logo of the APEC summit.
China launches Tianlian I-04 satellite
- China on 22 November 2016 successfully launched the Tianlian I-04 satellite from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre in Sichuan province of Southwest China.
- This data satellite was launched on a Long March-3C carrier rocket. The launch of the Tianlian I-04 marks the 241st mission of China's Long March series of rockets.
Ex-Governor of Madhya Pradesh Ram Naresh Yadav passes away
- Ram Naresh Yadav, former Governor of Madhya Pradesh, passed away on 22 November 2016 following a prolonged illness at a hospital in Lucknow. He was 90.
- Yadav courted controversy after his name cropped up in the Vyapam recruitment scam during investigations. During the course of investigation of the Vyapam scam, the MP police's Special Task Force (STF) registered an FIR against Ram Naresh Yadav which was later quashed by the High Court.