Current Affairs Current Affairs - 24 June 2016 - Vikalp Education

Online Vikalp, Current Affairs, Current Awareness, General Awareness, Aptitude Classes, Daily News, General Knowledge, General Awareness For All Competitive Exam, current affairs quiz,current affairs in india, current affairs about sports, current affairs and gk, current affairs about india, current affairs daily quiz, current affairs dairy, current affairs education, Top News, Breaking News, Latest News

Current Affairs - 24 June 2016

General Affairs 

BJP Leader Announces Rs. 1 Lakh 'Reward' For Rahul Gandhi's Whereabouts
  • BHOPAL:  A Madhya Pradesh BJP leader today announced a 'reward' of Rs. 1 lakh forproviding information about Congress Vice President, who has left for a short visit abroad.

    Madhya Pradesh BJP spokesperson Vijendra Singh Sisodia announced the reward by issuing a statement with a title "Rahul ka pata batao, ek lakh rupya pao" (Tell Rahul's address and get Rs. 1 lakh).

    Mr Sisodia, who is also the Chairman of the Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikas Nigam, said "I will give Rs. 1 lakh from my own pocket to anyone who finds out the address of Rahul Gandhi who has gone abroad."

    "Few months' back also Rahul Gandhi went abroad and that time Congressmen were saying that he has gone for a brainstorming session and will come back from there energised. However, later it turned out that Rahul had gone to Thailand, Malaysia, Bangkok and Singapore," the BJP leader said.

    "Now Congressmen believe that his energy levels are running low and hence he went (abroad) again to get charged. Where he has gone? Whom did he meet? How he gets charged? How many days he remains charged? The country wants to know it," he said.

    "I have announced that if any Congressmen or any citizen of the country provides the address of Rahul Gandhi, I will personally give him Rs. one lakh award," he said.

    However, Congress spokesperson Ravi Saxena, in a sharp retort said, "BJP leaders are suffering with Rahul phobia."

    "If Sisodia is so keen to know about Rahul's address then he should know that he is an SPG protectee and it is fully aware of the movements of guarded people. He should have paid lakh to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to know his (Rahul's) whereabouts," Mr Saxena said.

    A day after his 46th birthday, Mr Gandhi on Monday had announced that he is going abroad on a short visit for "few days", but did not specify the country he is heading for.

    The Congress Vice President's 56-day mysterious sabbatical last year had created much controversy in political circles with the ruling BJP making his absence in the midst of Budget session of Parliament an issue.

Woo Dalits, Minorities: Amit Shah's Message To Kerala BJP Unit
  • THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:  Pitching for building on NDA's Kerala Assembly election performance to strengthen the alliance for 2019 Lok Sabha polls, BJP President Amit Shah today asked leaders to woo Dalits and other marginalised sections and focus on converting the votes into more seats.

    Mr Shah was speaking at the NDA steering committee meeting here to review its performance in the state elections in which NDA bagged 15 per cent vote share and BJP made its maiden entry in the state Assembly, party sources said.

    The meeting was attended by the leaders of NDA partners in the state including Bharat Dharma Jana Sena (BDJS) President Thushar Vellappally, Janadhipathya Rashtriya Sabha (JRS)chief C K Janu and Kerala Congress (Thomas) leader P C Thomas.

    After reviewing the election results and the post-election scenario, Mr Shah suggested formulation of a special action plan to achieve maximum results in Parliament elections in the state, they said.

    In the closed-door meeting, he asked leaders to woo minorities, Dalits and other marginalised sections of the society and ensure their support in the coming days, they said.

    Expressing happiness over bagging 15 per cent votes in the election, he also said the number of seats should also be increased according to the total vote share, the sources said. Mr Shah also attended a BJP state committee meeting held later.

    BJP had fought the May 16 elections mainly in alliance with BDJS, a political party launched by Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam, an outfit of backward Ezhava community.

    The party scripted history with its nominee and senior leader O Rajagopal winning the Nemom seat to help the lotus bloom in the Assembly for the first time in the state, dominated by the bipolar politics of Congress-led UDF and CPI(M)-led LDF.

Government Denies Training North Korean Experts In Ballistic Technology At Dehradun
  • NEW DELHI:  India on Thursday strongly denied allegations in the media that a research centre in Dehradun may have violated UN sanctions by training North Korean experts who went on to occupy important positions in secretive military programmes of the reclusive communist nation.

    The allegations came up in an Al Jazeera article, citing a UN Security Council report, that the Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (CSSTEAP) has trained at least 30 North Koreans in the last nearly 20 years of its existence.

    The trained North Koreans included "Paek Chang-Ho, who was designated for his role in the launch of the Unha-3 rocket" on December 12, 2012, according to the UN Security Council report of February-March 2016. Paek is reported to be the vice director of Scientific Research and Development Department of North Korea's National Aerospace Development Administration.

    Currently, the centre has two students from that country studying there, the UN report said. One of them is affiliated with North Korea's National Aerospace Development Administration, which plays a key role in the country's nuclear development programme.

    But India denied that the institute conducted courses that could help North Koreans in training or transferring nuclear-related, ballistic missile-related or other weapons of mass destruction-related programmes as alleged in the Al Jazeera article.

    "We have come across the article. The insinuation in the article regarding India's assistance to North Korea's UN proscribed activities is baseless and without any merit," External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said in a statement.

    The UN report said one of the courses offered instructions that "could be directly relevant" to "designing and testing a launch vehicle using ballistic missile technology, such as those on launch vehicles, attitude control, and telemetry, tracking, command and data-handling systems".

    Mr Swarup said the UN report was the result of "subjective" and "limited understanding" of the experts "who have authored it".

    "India has made its position clear in this regard to the UN Security Council. The topics covered in the courses offered by CSSTEAP are very general and cover basic principles in the respective areas," the spokesperson said.

    The UN-sponsored centre was established in 1995 to ensure that "no country in the region will have to look abroad for expertise in space science and technology application".

    The UN report said the courses offered by the centre were not deliberately designed to assist ballistic missile development but the expert panel's assessment "is that certain modules or sub-modules constitute specialised training that could be used by (North) Korea in its prohibited activities."

    "Participation in the space and atmospheric science and global navigation satellite systems courses is a ballistic missile-related activity prohibited" under UN resolutions to impose sanctions against North Korea.

    Refuting the contention in the UN report, Mr Swarup said, "We believe that these courses are unlikely to contribute in any way to a violation of the various UN sanctions" against North Korea.

    He said a representative of the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs (UN-OOSA) is a permanent observer on the governing board of the institute and its advisory committee, which evaluates and reviews the course curriculum and criterion for the selection of candidates, is also chaired by the director of UN-OOSA.

Gurgaon To Have Advanced Earthquake Warning System
  • GURGAON:  An Onsite Earthquake Warning and Security System will be set up at the Haryana Institute of Public Administration (HIPA) in Gurgaon, an official said today.

    This system has eight threshold values which gives signals and are programmed to raise public alarm and shut off gas, water and power supply in the event of a severe earthquake.

    The system has the capability of calculating the intensity of an earthquake. 

    It gets activated automatically at the intensity of 5 on the Richter scale, before destructive secondary waves hit, HIPA Director General SP Gupta said.

    Haryana falls in the seismic zone IV, III and II and is vulnerable to earthquakes.

78 Dead, 200 Badly Hurt In Extreme Weather In Eastern China
  • BEIJING, CHINA:  Hurricane-force winds, freak hailstorms, pounding rain and a tornado killed 78 people in China's eastern province of Jiangsu on Thursday and injured nearly 500 others, 200 of them critically, Xinhua reported.

    The storms hit Yancheng city around 2:30 pm (0630 GMT), with witnesses saying whole villages had been levelled and huge trees felled, China's official news agency said.

    Winds of up to 125 kilometres (77 miles) per hour struck the city and outlying suburbs, destroying houses, according to the report.

    "I heard the gales and ran upstairs to shut the windows," said Xie Litian, 62, from Donggou township in Funing County, told Xinhua.

    "I had hardly reached the top of the stairs when I heard a boom and saw the entire wall with the windows on it torn away."

    Saying that all the other houses in her neighbourhood had been destroyed, she added: "It was like the end of the world."

    Photos of the scene show dazed residents near homes reduced to rubble amid tangled telephone wires, splintered wood and toppled poles.

    Many parts of China have been lashed by torrential rains this week as summer rainstorms have been heavier than usual, causing damage across the country.

    Flooding is common during the summer monsoon season in the south of China but rainfall has been particularly heavy this year.

    In central China heavy floods killed 22 people and displaced 197,000, state media said on Monday.

    Eight people were trapped in a flooded coal mine in southwest China's Guizhou province, Xinhua reported.

    Direct economic losses from the floods hit nearly 2.7 billion yuan ($410 million), state media reported.

    China's vice premier Wang Yang said days earlier that China faced volatile weather conditions due to the influence of El Nino.

Business Affairs 

Brexit may shake currency markets, send rupee tumbling to 68.40 vs dollar

  • As the world awaits the verdict on the UK referendum, the global currency equations look all set to get realigned. If indeed, Britons decide to leave the European Union, the strength in pound and dollar may send rupee to correct to 67.92-68.40 level against the US dollar. However, if the Britain stays in EU, the domestic currency may appreciate to as much as 66.20.
    Brexit or Bremain? A close call!
    Early results from Britain's historic referendum showed a close contest between the two camps, prompting wild swings in the value of the pound. It collapsed over 5 per cent against the US dollar at one stage, its biggest fall in living memory, while the euro slid 1.5 per cent as investors feared for its future.
    With results in from the first 13 of 382 voting districts, those in favour of ending Britain's 43-year membership with EU were on 52.4 per cent of the vote, while those wanting to stay were on 47.6 per cent.
    The Reserve Bank of India, however, assured that it will take all necessary measures to ensure orderly conditions amid an expected surge in volatility.
    "In case of Brexit, the rupee will be impacted indirectly as pound and euro will turn volatile or may depreciate against the dollar, at the same time, demand for yen and dollar as relatively safer currencies will also increase. A stronger dollar will put pressure on the rupee and we may see it to depreciate further till 67.70-67.90," said Rohit Gadia, Founder & CEO, CapitalVia Global.
    The expert doesn't expect any major impact if Britain stays within EU.
    "As rupee has already witnessed a fall and nothing much is further expected. We may see it to stay neutral or appreciate a bit to 66.80," added Gadia.
    Mustafa Nadeem, CEO, Epic Research believes Bremain scenario will send some relief to the currency given we breach 66.20, which is a crucial support level that will change after almost half a decade.
    Beyond Brexit/Bremain
    On the domestic front, the currency faces the risk of FCNR-deposits getting matured in September and the absence of Raghuram Rajan in the RBI after his tenure ends in September 04.
    Therefore, if you go beyond the Brexit/Bremain scenario, the expert expects the currency to hit an all-time low of 70 against the greenback in the coming 12 months, though in the systematic fashion.
    "As far as FCNR deposits are concerned, the RBI doesn't seem to be in an uncomfortable position. While, some banks, which have sold dollars, may have to forward that to RBI, it would only trigger short term volatility.  However, over the longer haul (12 months), the currency may depreciate by 4-6 per cent albeit in a systematic manner rather than violent," said Mihir Vora- Director and Chief Investment Officer, Max life Insurance.
    Foreign-currency non-resident (FCNR) scheme is meant for Non Resident Indians (NRIs) and these are accepted by Indian banks in permitted foreign currencies. Rajan had introduced the scheme in September 2013 to support the rupee fall at a time when the currency was ruling around all-time low.
    A large chunk of these deposits will mature in September. The possible shortage of dollar, if NRIs redeem their deposits instead of rolling over, may put pressure on the domestic currency.
    In its June monetary policy, the RBI did highlight a possibility of rupee volatility during September-November on account of maturity FCNR deposits, but maintained that rupee liquidity would continue to be supplied as and when required.
    "Post Rexit, FCNR coming for resumption is another event that will put pressure on the rupee, but it has been taken care of with adequate reserves and with forex reserves at 363 billion, it will only have a marginal impact," said Mustafa Nadeem of Epic Research.

    Tata patriarch's aviation ambitions a step closer as India opens up

    • Officially at least, Ratan Tata, patriarch of one of India's wealthiest business families, retired in late 2012. In reality, he has been a driving force behind Tata's bet on airlines and a rare public campaign to open up the booming aviation sector.
      The $100 billion Tata group conglomerate is a major beneficiary of the decision last week to open up aviation in India, making it easier for start-ups to fly overseas sooner.
      The decision is no panacea for Tata, whose airlines - Vistara and AirAsia India - have had a slow start in a competitive market dominated by IndiGo, owned by InterGlobe Aviation (INGL.NS), and Etihad-backed Jet Airways (JET.NS), both of which opposed the rule change.
      But it marks a victory for 78-year-old Ratan Tata, and ends more than two years of airlines lobbying, of Twitter rows and of frequent public statements from the usually circumspect steel-to-salt group.
      "This was a David-and-Goliath kind of situation," said a source close to Tata group. "There was huge lobbying from the other side."
      Ultimately, sources familiar with the talks said, it was Ratan Tata, a trained pilot, who was key to sealing the deal, capitalising on his clout.
      In a message earlier this year, he called for "a new open market economy" and said airlines lobbying against a rule change was "reminiscent of protectionist and monopolistic pressures by vested interests' entities who seem to fear competition."
      A spokesman for Tata Sons, which promotes the group, denied Ratan Tata was directly involved, saying he had "nothing to do with operations or management of either of the airlines" after his retirement, and that views he expressed were personal.
      Not that either of Tata's two airline ventures - a low-cost carrier owned with Malaysia's AirAsia Bhd (AIRA.KL) and Vistara, a full-service carrier run with Singapore Airlines (SIAL.SI) - is yet ready to fly overseas. Both have had turbulent starts.
      Vistara initially focused on domestic business travellers, but had to reconfigure its aircraft after a year, to replace pricier seats with cheaper ones.
      AirAsia underwent a management shake-up earlier this year.
      Vistara's share of India's passenger air market is rising but is still just 2.5 percent after nearly 18 months in business. AirAsia's share after two years has stagnated at about 2 percent, government data showed, compared with IndiGo, which has a 39 percent share, and Jet Airways with 19 percent.
      But flying overseas is critical. It means higher profits and margins than in India's cut-throat market dominated by low-cost carriers, and Vistara and AirAsia now aim to boost their fleet sizes within a year.
      A Tata Sons spokeswoman said making profit can take several years and the group had a "clear road map": "Aviation is a long gestation business sector."
      The new rules water down a requirement known as 5/20, which barred domestic airlines from flying overseas before being in operation for five years and having 20 aircraft. [nL4N1972TA]
      Now they can fly overseas as long as they deploy 20 aircraft or 20 percent of total capacity in India, whichever is higher. Tata Sons and the two airlines said they would prefer the rules to be abolished altogether.
      Tata group, a business empire stretching from Jaguar Land Rover and steel mills in Britain to salt pans and India's cheapest car, has a long history in aviation.
      J. R. D. Tata, the group chairman before Ratan Tata, became India's first qualified pilot in 1929, and set up an airline that was later nationalised as state carrier Air India.
      Under Ratan Tata, the group sought to snap up Air India in a privatisation process, later aborted.
      Instead, even as current chairman Cyrus Mistry has sought to wind up some of Tata group's more ambitious projects, Ratan Tata pulled the group back in with two joint ventures. For his critics, the intervention was too little, too late.
      In 2013, a year after India liberalised foreign direct investment in aviation, Tata returned, first with AirAsia and then Vistara.
      "India's market has only just started and it could provide growth for global aviation for the next 10 or 15 years," said Kapil Kaul, New Delhi-based chief executive of the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) consultancy.
      India is the world's fastest-growing aviation market, clocking more than 20 percent growth last year, and CAPA expects domestic passenger travel to grow to 500 million by 2035 from 70 million in 2015.
      Tata group is moving to capitalise on the win.
      Vistara, which has 11 aircraft, had an original plan to scale up to 20 by June, 2018, but could speed that up.
      "We do not rule out accelerating the deliveries or procuring more aircraft from leasing firms, manufacturers or, for that matter, from our parent Singapore Airlines also," Vistara CEO Phee Teik Yeoh said in response to a query.
      Yeoh said the company was reviewing its international plans.
      AirAsia is in the process of ramping up its aircraft to 20 from six to meet the criteria, India CEO Amar Abrol said, adding that the airline lobbied hard for the removal of the 5/20 rule.

      Led by OVL, India firms consider buying stake in Rosneft

      • Indian oil firms led by ONGC Videsh Ltd are considering buying a part of the $11 billion stake that Russia is selling in its biggest oil firm Rosneft, Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said on Thursday.
        Russia is looking at selling 19.5 per cent of state oil champion Rosneft OJSC, preferably to India and China.
        "Our companies are looking into the offer. They are mulling if they can take some of that equity. They are looking into it," he said.
        Rosneft produces more crude oil than Exxon Mobil Corp.
        Asked who among the Indian state-owned oil firms is leading the talks, Pradhan said, "of course OVL is the company heading the discussions now. Others may join later."
        Moscow is looking to cut its budget deficit through a stake sale in Rosneft and the preferred option for it is to a strategic partner rather than a public share offering that would be more susceptible to political instability.
        Rosneft, whose current market value is put at about $55 billion, is among the companies sanctioned by the US over Russian involvement in Ukraine.
        BP plc of UK had bought near 20 per cent stake in Rosneft in 2013, much before Russia got involved in Ukraine.
        Pradhan, who earlier this month visited Moscow, said Russia is considering disinvestment in Rosneft and Indian companies will certainly evaluate the opportunity.
        Rosneft last month completed sale of 15 per cent stake in Russia's second biggest oilfield of Vankor to OVL, the overseas arm of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), for $1.268 billion.
        During Pradhan's visit, it signed agreement to sell another 23.9 per cent in Vankor to a consortium of Oil India Ltd, Indian Oil Corp (IOC) and Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) for another $2 billion.
        It has signed preliminary agreement to sell another 11 per cent stake in the same field to OVL.
        "When all these transactions close, Indian companies will have nearly 50 per cent stake in Vankor," Pradhan said.
        Vankor field, located in East Siberia, is Russia's second largest field by production and accounts for around 4 per cent of Russian production. It currently produces about 422,000 barrels of oil per day.
        "The production India will get from the near 50 per cent stake in Vankor is equal of roughly half of ONGC's current domestic oil production," he said. 

      S&P retains Adani rating at 'BBB-' with stable outlook

      • S&P Global Ratings said on Thursday it has affirmed its preliminary 'BBB-' long-term corporate credit rating on Adani Transmission Ltd (ATL) on stable outlook.
        It also affirmed its preliminary 'BBB-' long-term issue rating on the company's proposed issuance of Indian rupee-denominated senior secured notes.
        "The rating on ATL reflects our expectations of stable cash flows driven by a favourable regulatory environment, the company's power transmission business and its good operating record," S&P Global Ratings credit analyst Mehul Sukkawala said in the statement.
        However, the company is dependent on two key assets, exposed to somewhat weak counterparties and has a short track record of operations.
        "The rating also reflects our expectation that ATL's growth aspirations will be moderated by the company's legal and management commitment to limit the investment and support to new projects," the rating firm said in the statement.
        An obligation rated 'BBB' exhibits adequate protection parameters. However, adverse economic conditions or changing circumstances are more likely to lead to a weakened capacity of the obliger to meet its financial commitment on the obligation.
        "We believe ATL benefits from a predictable tariff-setting mechanism, which results in stable cash flows. Tariff recovery is linked to network availability and is independent of volumes, protecting ATL from volume risk. It allows the company to recover its fixed costs and earn assured return on equity," the statement said.
        The rating agency also said that it has a favourable view of the central regulator CERC (Central Electricity Regulatory Commission) and Maharashtra state regulator MERC (Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission) that administer the tariff for the company's current portfolio of transmission assets.

        SBI plans to raise Rs 10,000 crore from overseas bonds

        • State Bank of India (SBI) said on Thursday it plans to raise $1.5 billion (about Rs 10,000 crore) from overseas markets via bonds during the current fiscal to fund its expansion.
          The bank's board is meeting on June 29 to take a decision in this regard, SBI said in a statement.
          The board would examine the status and decide on long-term fund raising in single or multiple tranches of up to $1,500 million through a public offer or private placement of senior unsecured notes in US dollar or any other convertible currency during 2016-17, it said.
          For the fourth quarter ended March 2016, the country's largest lender posted 66 per cent slump in standalone profits to Rs 1,263.81 crore, as it more than doubled the provisions for bad loans.
          The bank posted a net profit of Rs 3,742.02 crore in the corresponding January-March quarter of the previous fiscal (2014-15).
          Its provision towards bad loans alone were raised to Rs 12,139.17 crore during the last quarter of 2015-16, up from Rs 4,985.83 crore in the year-ago period.

        General Awareness

        World Bank’s India Development Update – June 2016

          • United States based World Bank released India Development Update report to earmark the Indian economy and its prospects for the financial year 2016.

            It is twice yearly report reported by World Bank and the report explained that Indian Economy was enhanced to a higher progressive way by demand from urban households and Public investments.

            India’s Financial Sector Reviews:

            The Sector is performing in the positive end in many attributes which is raised from state controlled system
            Banks have capital values in excess of current regulatory requirements and regulations have been strengthened
            Flexibility in the credit growth:
            • Issues have been arisen particularly on Non Performing assets and declining credit growth in Public Sector Bank
            • Reforms will be required for the sector such as current structural transformation of the sector require to accelerate the sector to be market oriented & competitiveand NPA issues will be addressed proactively
            Analyses of the Report:
            • Impacts of the recommendations of the 14th Finance commission of India have been scrutinized
            • Health and education expenditures increased in every state especially in Rajasthan and Kerala
            • Uttar Pradesh spent over one-third of its additional resources on health and education
            • India maintained 7.6 per cent growth rate in 2016-17 and it will be expected that 7.7 per cent in 2017-18 and 7.8 per cent in 2018-19.
            Challenges for the Indian Economy
            • Agricultural Growth and Rural Demand
            • Trade and Private Investment
            About World Bank
            • International financial institution that provides loans to developing countries for capital programs
            • President: Jim Yong Kim
            • Headquarters: Washington, D.C., United States
            • Founded: 1944

        No comments:

        Featured post

        Current Affairs - 16 December 2018

        General Affairs   Cyclone Phethai Gathers Over Bay Of Bengal, May Hit Andhra On Monday ...

        Copyright © 2016. Vikalp Education