Current Affairs Update – 2-4 September, 2017


Hello and welcome to exampundit. Here are the Important Current Affairs of 2,3 & 4 September, 2017. These are very important for the upcoming IBPS PO, IBPS RRB, OICL AO, UIIC Assistant & NICL Assistant Exams.


Banking & Financial News

RBI includes HDFC Bank in 'too big to fail' list along with SBI, ICICI


  • RBI on Monday included HDFC Bank in the list of 'too big to fail' lenders, referred to as D-SIB or domestic systemically important bank.
  • India's largest lender SBI and private sector major ICICI Bank were classified as D-SIBs in 2015.
  • With the inclusion of HDFC Bank in the list, there will now be three 'too big to fail' financial entities in the country.
  • SIBs are subjected to higher levels of supervision so as to prevent disruption in financial services in the event of any failure.
  • "The additional Common Equity Tier 1 (CET1) requirement for D-SIBs has already been phased-in from April 1, 2016 and will become fully effective from April 1, 2019," the Reserve Bank said in a statement.
  • The additional CET1 or core capital requirement will be in addition to the capital conservation buffer, it added.
  • RBI had issued the framework for dealing with D-SIBs in July 2014.
  • According to the framework, RBI has to disclose the names of banks designated as D-SIBs every year in August starting from 2015 and place these banks in appropriate buckets depending upon their Systemic Importance Scores (SISs).

New Development Bank approves USD 1.4 billion loan for projects in India, China and Russia


  • The New Development Bank (NDB) in the last week of August 2017 approved USD 1.4 billion loans for sustainable development projects in India, China and Russia.
  • The Board of Directors of the Bank approved four infrastructure and sustainable development projects in the three countries.
  • The loans were approved ahead of the BRICS Summit to be held in Xiamen city of China from 3 September to 5 September 2017.
Key highlights

  • For India, the ADB approved USD 470 million loan for Madhya Pradesh's Multi-Village Rural Drinking Water Supply Scheme Project.
  • The other loans approved included China's Hunan Green Area Watershed Environmental Development Project, which would get two billion yuan to enhance flood control, and improve water quality in Xiang River watershed.
  • In addition, China's Jiangxi Industrial Low-Carbon Restructuring and Green Development Pilot Project will get a USD 200 million loan to promote energy conservation, resources recycling and pollutants reduction through technology upgrade.
  • The Bank will also provide a USD 460 million loan to the Russian Federation for the development of infrastructure and implementation of information technology systems of Russia's judicial system in Russia.

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Five banks of BRICS nations sign agreement to establish credit lines


  • Five banks of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) Bank Cooperation Mechanism have agreed to establish credit lines in the national currencies and cooperate on credit ratings.
  • The agreement was signed ahead of the ninth edition of the BRICS Summit, which is underway in Xiamen, China. The 2017 summit, attended by leaders of the five countries including Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is centred on the theme of ‘Stronger Partnership for a Brighter Future’.
  • The summit will conclude on 5 September.
  • Five banks including Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES), Vnesheconombank, Export-Import Bank of India, China Development Bank and Development Bank of South Africa (DBSA) signed the agreement to establish credit lines in the national currencies.
  • The banks also signed a memorandum of cooperation on credit ratings.
  • The agreement on credit ratings reportedly enables the banks to share information about internal credit ratings and rating assessment.
  • The decision was taken in order to bolster further cooperation.
  • Besides this, the New Development Bank (NDB) of the BRICS countries has approved USD 1.4 billion loans for four infrastructure and sustainable development projects in the three countries including China, India and Russia.
  • For India specifically, the bank has approved USD 470 million loan for Madhya Pradesh’s Multi-Village Rural Drinking Water Supply Scheme Project.

President Ram Nath Kovind laid foundation stone for Link-4 of SAUNI Scheme


  • President Ramnath Kovind laid the foundation stone for link – 4 of Saurashtra Narmada Avataran Irrigation (SAUNI) Scheme in Rajkot district on 4 September 2017.
  • The project had been launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his tenure as Gujarat Chief Minister.
  • The project aims to fill up 115 major dams by diverting excess water of Sardar Sarovar dam across river Narmada, by a web of pipeline network.
  • Earlier in June 2017, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited Rajkot when Aji dam was filled with the Narmada water under the Saurashtra Narmada Avataran Irrigation (SAUNI) project.
  • The third phase of SAUNI yojana has already been dedicated to the people following completion of the work.

Swedish defence giant collaborates with Adani group for defence manufacturing


  • Swedish defence giant Saab and Indian conglomerate Adani group announced a collaboration in defence manufacturing on 1 September 2017.
  • The collaboration, involving billions of dollars of investment, mainly eyes a contract for single- engine fighter jets for the Indian Air Force.
  • The project would include design, development and production of Gripen jets for India, keeping in line with the Make in India initiative.
  • It would also include sharing of technologies of national importance with India.
  • The Union government is set to procure a fleet of single-engine fighters for the Indian Air Force.
  • The US defence firm Lockheed Martin is slated to be a major competitor for Saab for the deal.
  • Main Objectives of the Collaboration
  • The partnership aims to produce single engine fighter jets and other defence products for India under the country's recently unveiled "strategic partnership" model.
  • According to the CEO and President of Saab, Hakan Buskhe, the main objective behind the collaboration is to create a new defence eco- system in India that would involve many partners, vendors and suppliers.
  • To achieve the same the Swedish company needed a strong Indian partner who can help create the framework for the infrastructure and eco-system to come into place.

News related to India & states

Entire Assam declared as ‘disturbed area’ under AFSPA for six months


  • The Assam Government on 1 September 2017 declared the entire state as “disturbed area” for six months beginning 1 September 2017 under Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA).
  • This is the first time in 27 years that the state government took call on AFSPA and extended the term of the Act.
  • The declaration was made after the state government assessed the present law and order situation in the state which has continued to be a matter of concern due to some violent incidents by underground outfits.
  • Earlier, On 3 August 2017, the Union Government declared entire Assam as “disturbed” under the AFSPA with effect from 3 August to 31 August 2017. And the same has now been extended by the state government for a period of six months.
  • AFSPA has been continuing in Assam since November 1990.

Awards & Honors

Ahmedabad gets India’s first 'World Heritage City’ tag from UNESCO


  • The city of Ahmedabad, known as the commercial hub of Gujarat, was on 1 September 2017 formally accorded the status of India’s first ‘World Heritage City’ by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).
  • The certificate for the same was handed over by UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova to the state’s Chief Minister, Vijay Rupani.
  • Speaking on the occasion, Rupani said that it was a proud moment for over 6.5 Cr people of Gujarat. He added that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had put in a lot of hard work to get the heritage tag for the city.
  • India secured the nomination for Ahmedabad on UNESCO's World Heritage list during the 41st Session of World Heritage Committee on 8 July 2017.
  • The honour makes the walled city the first one in India and the third in Asia to feature on the esteemed list.
  • The city was selected for the coveted status out of 250 cities.

UNESCO announces winners of International Literacy Prizes 2017


  • United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on 30 August 2017 announced the winners of the 2017 International Literacy Prizes that honour excellence and innovation in the field of global literacy.
  • The UNESCO International Literacy Prizes are divided into two categories namely the UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy that is sponsored by China and the King Sejong Literacy Prize that is sponsored by South Korea.
Here are the winners of the 2017 International Literacy Prizes:

  • Confucius Prize recognises the projects that benefit rural populations and out-of-school youth, particularly girls and women. This year, the UNESCO Confucius Prize will be given to:
  • AdulTICoProgram: This program was the initiative of the Secretariat of Information and Communications Technologies of Armenia (Colombia) for teaching digital competencies to seniors.
  • The Citizens Foundation (Pakistan): The foundation was chosen for its Aagahi Literacy Programme for Women and Out-of-School Girls that includes digital educational needs assessments and provides teaching services to support the education of younger girls and older women.
  • FunDza (South Africa): The organisation launched readers and writers project to develop a culture of reading and writing for pleasure through an online platform that provides reading courses and writing competitions.

Appointments

Nirmala Sitharaman becomes India’s first full-time woman Defence Minister


  • Nirmala Sitharaman, a JNU alumni and former Minister of State (Independent Charge) Commerce, was appointed as the new Defence Minister on 3 September 2017, thus gaining entry into Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Union Cabinet.
  • The trained economist took the charge of the key ministry from Arun Jaitley who had been handling the portfolio after Manohar Parrikar quit to become Goa's chief minister.
  • With the development, Sitharaman became India's first full-time Defence Minister and second all-time one, after Indira Gandhi who had held the portfolio twice, first from 1- 21 December in 1975 and the second time from 14 January 1980 to 15 January 1982.
  • So, India has a woman at the helm of the key ministry, 35 years after the last one.

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Cabinet Reshuffle: Piyush Goyal gets Railways, Nirmala Sitharaman gets Defence


  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 3 September 2017 held the third major Cabinet reshuffle, which saw the change of portfolios of 32 ministers and selection of nine new ministers.
  • The most considerable of them all is the elevation of Nirmala Sitharaman as a Defence Minister, making her the first woman after Indira Gandhi to hold the portfolio of Defence Minister.
  • PM Modi’s third cabinet reshuffle that seems to be targeting 2019 Lok Sabha Elections, showcases priorities of NDA Government as it chooses performance above politics.
Reshuffled Cabinet

  1. Nirmala Sitharaman: She was given the portfolio of Minister of Defence. Prior to this, she was handling the portfolio of Minister of State for Commerce.
  2. Piyush Goyal: He was given the portfolio of Minister of Railways and will also continue to serve as Minister of Coal.
  3. Dharmendra Pradhan: He will now look after Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship while serving as the Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas.
  4. Muqtar Abbas Naqvi: He was elevated as a Cabinet Minister and will continue to handle the portfolio of Minister of Minority Affairs.
  5. Suresh Prabhu: He was appointed as the Union Minister of Commerce and was removed as Railways Minister. This decision came after Prabhu offered to resign following a chain of critical train disasters.
  6. Nitin Gadkari: He was given the charge of Ministry of Water Resources and Ganga Rejuvenation along with Union Transport Ministry.
  7. Uma Bharti: She was removed as Minister of Water Resources and was given the charge of Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation.
  8. Vijay Goel: He was given the charge of Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs and Statistics & Programme Implementation. Earlier, he was handling the Sports Ministry.
  9. Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore: He was given the portfolio of Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports.

Karur Vysya Bank appoints P R Seshadri as new MD, CEO


  • P R Seshadri has assumed charge as the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Karur Vysya Bank.
  • Seshadri, a senior banker with over 25 years experience, started his banking career with Citibank in early 1992. He has served in various capacities including Managing Director of Citi Financial Consumer Finance Ltd and Citi Financial Retail Services India Ltd till 2005. He moved to Singapore in 2005 as the Managing Director and regional head of the bank's retail banking and lending businesses for Asia Pacific region
  • More recently, he held the post of Chief Executive Officer of BFC Bank Limited, London.
  • He is an alumnus of IIM, Bangalore and Delhi College of Engineering.

Indian-origin Joseph Yuvaraj Pillay appointed as Interim President of Singapore


  • Indian-origin civil servant Joseph Yuvaraj Pillay was on 1 September 2017 appointed as Interim President of Singapore until the new President is sworn-in.
  • Pillay succeeds Tony Tan Keng Yam who completed a six-year term on 31 August 2017. At present, Pillay is serving as the Chairman of the Council of Presidential Advisers (CPA).
  • This is the first time that the office of President of Singapore has fallen vacant since the elected presidency was introduced in 1991. As per Singapore law, when the office of President is vacant, the first in line to exercise its powers is the CPA Chairman followed by the Speaker of Parliament.

Sports News

Mahendra Singh Dhoni becomes the first wicketkeeper to have 100 stumpings in ODI Cricket


  • Former Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on 3 September 2017 became the first wicketkeeper in the world of cricket to claim 100 stumpings in the One Day International (ODI). With this, Dhoni surpassed the former Sri Lankan captain Kumar Sangakkara, who had 99 stumpings in 404 ODI matches.
  • Dhoni achieved the fete in his 301st ODI played against Sri Lanka in Colombo. To achieve the fete, Dhoni whipped off the bails to remove the Sri Lankan batsman Akila Dananjaya off leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal's bowling.
  • 36-year-old Dhoni has also taken 281 catches apart from scoring 9657 runs so far. Dhoni has played 90 Tests and 77 T20 Internationals as well. In 90 Tests, Dhoni has taken 256 catches and effected 38 stumping. In T20 Internationals, Dhoni has taken 43 catches and affected 23 stumpings.
  • Earlier on 31 August 2017, Dhoni became the sixth Indian player to play 300 ODI matches. With this, Dhoni, also known as Mahi, joined the elite club comprising of Mohammed Azharuddin, Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Yuvraj Singh.
  • Besides, on 3 September 2017 Indian cricket team led by Captain Virat Kohli also won the five-match ODI series against Sri Lanka, 5-0. On this occasion, Kohli scored his 30th ODI century. With his 30th century, Kohli became the joint-second in the list of most century makers’ and at present is behind of Sachin Tendulkar, who scored 49 ODI centuries in his career. Australian Ricky Ponting is the other player with 30 ODI centuries

World News

NASA Astronaut Peggy Whitson to return home after 288 days in space


  • NASA Astronaut Peggy Whitson is set to return to Earth from the International Space Station on 2 September 2017, after completing a 288-day mission.
  • Whitson would be returning with her Expedition 52 crewmates, Nasa’s Jack Fischer and Fyodor Yurchikhin of the Russian space agency Roscosmos. They are scheduled to land in Kazakhstan.
  • Whitson’s expedition crew members, Yurchikhin and Fischer, who were launched in April 2017, would be completing 136 days in space on their return.
  • Russia’s Yurchikhin will return to Earth with a total accumulated space time of 673 days over the course of 5 missions. This feat would put him in the 7th place on the all-time endurance list.
  • A three-person crew including Sergey Ryazanskiy of Roscosmos and Paolo Nespoli of ESA would be manning the International space station until the arrival of three new crew members.

Obituaries

TMC MP Sultan Ahmed passes away


  • Sultan Ahmed, Trinamool Congress Lok Sabha MP from West Bengal's Uluberia constituency, passed away on Monday after suffering a cardiac arrest. He was 64.
  • Ahmed had been a Union Minister of State for Tourism in the UPA-II.
  • According to sources, Ahmed suffered a massive heart attack at his home this morning. He was rushed to a private hospital where he was declared “brought dead”.

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