Current Affairs Update - 26th September 2017
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PM Narendra Modi forms Economic Advisory Council; Bibek Debroy to head it
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday reconstituted the Economic Advisory Council (EAC) to guide him on economic issues and appointed economist Bibek Debroy as its chairman. Debroy is a member of government think tank Niti Aayog.
- The council has been defunct since former RBI governor C Rangarajan resigned as its chairman after the NDA came to power in 2014.
- "The five-member council consists of economists of high repute and eminence," a government release said. The four other part-time EAC members are Surjit Bhalla, Rathin Roy, Ashima Goyal and Ratan Watal.
An Egyptian woman who once held the title of “world’s heaviest woman” dies after weight-loss surgery
New Appointments: International
Germany elections: Angela Merkel wins 4th term as far-right party enters parliament.
- Angela Merkel won a fourth term as chancellor in Germany elections that lifted the far-right party Alternative for Germany into parliament for the first time since the immediate aftermath World War II, according to exit polls that point to growing polarization in Europe’s biggest economy.
- Merkel’s Christian Democrat-led bloc took 32.5% to defeat Martin Schulz’s Social Democrats, whose 20% is its worst result since the war, the exit polls for national broadcasters ARD and ZDF showed on Sunday. Merkel’s bloc dropped some nine percentage points from the last election in 2013 to record its worst result since 1949.
State-owned IDBI Bank said it has sold 1% stake in Small Industries Development Bank of India (Sidbi) for an undisclosed amount
- State-owned IDBI Bank Ltd on Monday said it has sold 1% stake in Small Industries Development Bank of India (Sidbi) for an undisclosed amount in a bid to mobilise funds by exiting non-core business.
- The bank has sold 53,19,220 shares constituting 1% of the paid up capital of Sidbi, IDBI Bank said in a regulatory filing. Without disclosing the name of the buyer, the bank said, the sale took place on 22 September.
- Earlier this year, IDBI Bank had said it plans to dilute stake in some non-core businesses to shore up capital base. The board of the bank had approved in-principle proposal to divest some of its non-core investments, subject to compliance with all applicable laws and regulations and final approval obtained for each transaction.
India become World No. 1 in both ODIs and Tests.
- India beat Australia by 5 wickets in the third ODI played between the two sides at Indore. The victory helped them take an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five match series which helps them pip South Africa to claim the no. 1 spot in the ICC ODI rankings. This now means that India are now at the top of both the Test and ODI rankings.
Facebook joins Apple, Google in top 10 most valuable brands list
- According to the the annual Interbrand Best Global Brands Report, the world’s five top growing brands included Facebook, Amazon, Adobe, Adidas and Starbucks.
- The technology sector dominated the annual Interbrand Best Global Brands Report, released on Monday with half of the top ten brands being technology firms. Apple and Google topped the 18th edition of global rankings for the fifth consecutive year. The report estimated the value of brand Apple at $184.1 billion, up 3% from last year. Value of brand Google was estimated at $141.7 billion, an increase of 6% from last year.
Reliance Industry Ltd.(RIL) becomes world's 3rd largest energy firm
- Reliance IndustriesBSE -0.15 % ltd has jumped five places to rank as the world's third-biggest energy company behind Russian gas firm Gazrpom and German utility E.ON, according to Platts Top 250 Global Energy Company Rankings.
- State-owned Indian OilBSE 0.25 % Corp (IOC) broke into the top 10 club, climbing to 7th position in the 2017 ranking, up from 14th rank in 2016. IOCBSE 0.25 % has been steadily climbing the rankings -- it was placed at No. 66 in 2015.
China bans export of key petroleum products to N Korea.
- China has banned the export of liquefied natural gas and gas condensates to North Korea, as well as textile imports from the country, the Ministry of Commerce said. As part of latest UN sanctions against the reclusive state, China will also limit the export of refined oil. The UN sanctions were imposed on North Korea over its latest nuclear test.
Australia to create its own space agency to increase its share of the $330 billion space economy.
- Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said the agency would be part of Australia's development of an innovation and science economy. But the government has provided few specifics.
- "It's a small agency to coordinate and lead," Turnbull told reporters. "The space sector, of course, is one of enormous potential."
- Acting Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Michaelia Cash said the agency's charter would be developed by the end of March.
- "The global space industry is growing rapidly and it's crucial that Australia is part of this growth," Cash said in a statement.
Defence & Railway
INS Tarasa, a Water Jet Fast Attack Craft was commissioned into the Indian Navy by Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command at the Naval Dockyard, Mumbai.
- At an impressive commissioning ceremony, Vice Admiral Luthra expressed confidence that the new INS Tarasa will discharge her duties with élan and resolve, and bring laurels to the Western Naval Command and the Nation.
- Complimenting the designers, builders, engineers, overseers, and the officers and the men whose efforts have fructified in the commissioning of the ship, he said that the ship is of proven design, has good endurance, low draught, high speed and manoeuvrability, thus making her most suited for her primary role of extended coastal and offshore surveillance and patrol.
- He reserved special praise for the ship’s crew and the Warship Overseeing Team, Kolkata for ensuring that the ship has been commissioned with all Weapon and Sensor trials completed. The passage of the ship during her maiden voyage from Kolkata to Mumbai, in rough weather, bears testimony to the seaworthiness of the ship.
Pakistan, Russia begin joint military drills DRUZBA 2017 started in Minralney Vody, Russia.
- The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) stated in the press release that the opening ceremony was attended by senior military officials of special forces of both countries.
- The joint exercise will focus on counter terrorism Operations, hostage and rescue, Cordon and Search Operation, according to the press statement.
- The joint exercise will enhance and further strengthen military ties between both the countries and share Pakistan Army’s experience in war against terrorism, it added. –SAMAA
Schemes / Programme
Poor to get free power as PM Modi launches Rs 16k crore Saubhagya scheme (Power to All Scheme)
- PM launches Rs 16,320 crore scheme - Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana
- It will provide electricity connections to over 4 crore families in rural and urban areas by December 2018
- The outlay for rural households is Rs 14,025 crore. For urban households, the outlay is Rs 2,295 crore
- Power connections will be provided free of cost to all poor families under the scheme.
Karnataka Govt. launches consultative process for vision 2025, ahead of 2018 polls
- The Congress government in Karnataka on Monday launched a first-of-its-kind consultative exercise with the citizens of the state to draw up a vision document for overall development in 13 sectors over the next seven years. The document will be ready by December.
- This proposal for a Vision 2025 document comes on the heels of Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiling his Vision 2022 for the country on August 9, marking the 75th anniversary of the Quit India movement.
Summit /Conference / Events / Host
7th ASEM Economic Ministers' Meeting (ASEM EMM7) will be held on 21-22 September 2017 in Seoul, Korea.
- ASEM EMM was especially dedicated to discussing relevant economic issues including trade and investment matters within the ASEM region.
- This EMM is the first in 12 years since 2005. The global economy is facing major challenges from escalating protectionism as well as fundamental transformation triggered by the 4th Industrial Revolution. Against this background, the 7th ASEM EMM will provide a valuable opportunity for ASEM partners to find region-wide ways for economic cooperation by discussing the following topics; ? Facilitating and Promoting Trade & Investment, ?Strengthening Economic Connectivity, ?Sustainable and Inclusive Growth.
Awards & Honours
India bags 4 more medals in 5th Asian Indoor & Martial Arts Games in Turkmenistan Standing at 11th Spot.
- India grabbed the 11th spot in the 5th Asian Indoor & Martial Arts Games in Turkmenistan after winning four more medals on Saturday.
- India's medal tally now stands at 5 gold, 7 silver and 7 bronze. Sajan Prakash of India finished second with a silver medal in the Men's 100-metre butterfly event.
- Divya Gurling Shilwant and Pratiksha Chandrakant Parhar managed to win a bronze medal each in women's Alysh classic in 70 kg and 75 kg categories in the Belt Wrestling Discipline.
- Wrestler Keduovilie Zumu from Nagaland won the Bronze medal in Kazakh Kuresh style belt wrestling in 90 kg weight category.
PV Sindhu nominated for Padma Bhushan by Sports Ministry
- Indian shuttler PV Sindhu has been nominated for the prestigious Padma Bhushan award by the Sports Ministry on Monday. World No. 2 Sindhu has been in stellar form since winning a silver medal at Rio Olympics last year and is the second athlete after cricketer MS Dhoni to have been nominated for the honour this year.
Sports: Awards & Honours
Reigning Asian champion Govindan Lakshmanan of Services cruised to victory in the men's 5000 metre race on the opening day of the 57th National Open Athletics Championships at the Nehru Stadium.
- Lakshmanan, fresh from winning a gold in the 3,000m event at the Asian Indoor Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, clocked a time of 14 minutes, 4.21 seconds to emerge winner.
- Abhishek Pal of Railways came in second, clocking a time of 14 minute 8.38 seconds. Mann Singh of Services took the bronze with a time of 14:08.87.
- It was way below Lakshmanan's personal best (of 13:35.69), which he achieved during the Worlds in London.
Indian shuttler Vaishnavi Reddy notched up the women's singles U-19 title at the Belgian Junior Open after defeating top seed Vivien Sandorhazi in a three-game final at Herstal, Belgium
- Second seed Reddy saw off Vivien 21-19, 17-21, 21-12 in a 42-minute summit clash at the Hall Omnisport La Prealle.
- At Ethiopia International, top seeded men's doubles pair of Arjun MR and Ramchandran Shlok won 21-6, 21-19 against Jordanian pair of Bahaedeen Ahmad Alshannik and Mohd Naser Mansour in the finals at the Ethiopian Youth Academy Gymnasium Hall to clinch the title.
East Bengal Win Record 8th Consecutive Calcutta Football League
- East Bengal registered a record-extending eighth consecutive Calcutta Football League (CFL) title by holding Mohun Bagan to a 2-2 draw in a thrilling match at the Kanchenjunga Stadium here on Sunday.
- East Bengal have won all the CFL titles since 2010. They have a total of 39 CFL titles which is also a tournament record.
New underground water treatment plant commissioned at Sadhutilla in Agartala.
- In Tripura, a new underground water treatment plant has been commissioned at Sadhutilla in the southern part of Agartala under the aegis of the state Urban Development department.
- Officials said the plant has fulfilled long cherished aspiration of people looking for drinking water free from iron and other contamination.
- The plant, inaugurated on Saturday, has started functioning with supply of quality treated water initially to 565 households through pipe line. It has treatment capacity of 4 point 8 million litre per day and will supply potable water to 2500 connections at households, schools, markets and institutions of 13 hamlets.
Yogi Adityanath’s government will release 100 prisoners from various jails across Uttar Pradesh as part of the celebrations to mark Dendayal Upadhyay’s 100th birth anniversary.
- The Uttar Pradesh government late Saturday evening decided to release 100 prisoners and undertrials lodged in various jails to mark the birth centenary of RSS ideologue Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya.
- “IG, Prison has directed the district jail officers to release the prisoners on September 25, birth anniversary of Upadhyaya. A list of the prisoners whom the state government has decided to release has been sent to the jail superintendents,” a state government spokesperson said.