Current Affairs GK Update - 7th September 2017
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BSNL chairman and MD Anupam Shrivastava says expects to start 5G service trials by March 2018
- The state-owned telecom firm BSNL expects to start field trial of 5G services by the end of this financial year, company’s chairman and MD Anupam Shrivastava said on Wednesday.
- “We had interaction with Nokia last week (on 5G). Next we are going to present about our requirements after which field trail concept is there. It should start before the end of this financial year,” Shrivastava told reporters in New Delhi.
- The state-run firm has started discussion with Larsen & Toubro and HP for end devices that will be required for 5G services. He was speaking on the sidelines of signing its knowledge sharing agreement on 5G technology with network firm Coriant.
One of Lakshadweep's 36 islands has vanished, claims study
- Uninhabited Lakshadweep island Parali I, which is a part of the Bangaram Atoll, has disappeared because of coastal soil erosion, according to a study. The island, which was 0.032 sq km in 1968 has reportedly eroded fully, resulting in its inundation. The study further observed that all five Bangaram Atoll islets have undergone coastal erosion.
Facebook launches video platform 'Watch' for users in the US
- Social media giant Facebook on Wednesday officially launched its video platform Watch for users in the US. Available on Facebook's mobile apps and desktop site, Watch allows users to subscribe to their favourite series and offers sections like "Today's Spotlight", "Popular Now", and "What Friends Are Watching." It also offers a special "10 Minutes Or More" spot for long-form videos.
Gujarat government to ban Blue Whale Challenge game also Delhi Police is in the Race.
- Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani today said his government will ban the online game 'Blue Whale Challenge', which allegedly incites players to commit suicide.
- "My government has given instructions to the Home Department as well as the Chief Secretary to find out ways to ban this game in the state.
- "We have to stop this, as people are committing suicide due to this game," he told reporters in Gandhinagar today.
- He also said that if needed, the state government would bring an ordinance to ban the game in Gujarat.
- "Officials have been asked to expedite the process to ban the game. If needed, we may also bring an ordinance to ban it. We are totally committed to ban this game in Gujarat, as we cannot allow our children to commit suicide due to this game," he added.
New Appointments: National
N Baijendra Kumar to take charge as National Mineral Development Corporation CMD
- N Baijendra Kumar, the IAS officer of the Chhattisgarh cadre, will take charge as CMD of the state-run National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) on Wednesday.
- Kumar was additional chief secretary to the Chhattisgarh chief minister and held the charge of power, commerce & industries.
New Appointments: International
Donald Trump nominates Kenneth Juster as US envoy to India
- President Donald Trump has nominated Kenneth Juster, a top economic aide and one of the key architects of the historic Indo-US civil nuclear agreement, to be the next US ambassador to India.
- Trump sent Juster's nomination to the US Senate and a confirmation hearing is likely to be held soon.
- Juster, 62, played a key role in enhancing the Indo-US ties under the Bush Administration. He would replace Richard Verma as the top American diplomat to India if his name is confirmed.
- The position has been vacant since January 20 after Verma put in his papers as Trump took over as the US president.
Parineeti Chopra becomes the first Indian woman ambassador for Tourism Australia
- Bollywood diva, Parineeti Chopra has now been appointed as the first Indian woman ambassador in ''Friends of Australia'' (FOA) advocacy panel by Tourism Australia.
- The ''Friends of Australia'' programme has been devised as a way of fostering mutually beneficial, long-term friendship with those that Tourism Australia regards as unique storytellers.
- The panel also includes influential personalities like chef Sanjeev Kapoor and cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle.
Banks without Aadhaar enrolment centres to face Rs20,000 fine from October
- The UIDAI has given banks one more month to open Aadhaar enrolment centres in a stipulated 10% of branches and will impose Rs20,000 as fine per uncovered branch after 30 September, CEO Ajay Bhushan Pandey said on Tuesday.
- The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), in July, had asked private as well as public banks to open Aadhaar enrolment and updation facility in one out of 10 branches by August-end. The reprieve of one month has now been granted as many banks sought additional time from the authority for setting up such facility on their premises.
- “Banks approached us saying they need more time, so we have given them till 30 September to set up the facility. Non-compliance after the deadline will attract a fine of Rs20,000 per uncovered branch every month,” Pandey told PTI.
- This means a bank with 100 branches will need to have Aadhaar enrolment facility in 10 branches. Failure to open the stipulated facility in, say, five branches even after expiry of the 30 September deadline, would mean that the bank will have to cough up penalty of Rs1 lakh in the first month itself (at the rate of Rs20,000 per uncovered branch).
Digital payments network Visa has partnered with payment gateway entity BillDesk, to enable around 59 service providers to start accepting BharatQR payments.
- Some of the merchants include the likes of Tata AIG, ACT Broadband, Reliance Energy, Gujarat Gas, MTNL, Aircel, Tata Power, Pune Municipal Corporation, and Calcutta Electricity Supply spanning services such as utilities, internet, phone, DTH, insurance, and government services.
- This partnership would enable a major shift towards pushing of bill payments into digital mode especially through QR codes and also give a boost to transactions through BharatQR which was majorly promoted by the Reserve Bank of India.
Yogi Adityanath, Rajnath Singh flag off Lucknow Metro
- People in Lucknow will finally be able to ride the metro from Wednesday after Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and UP CM Yogi Adityanath jointly flagged off its commercial run on Tuesday. The 8.5-km priority corridor from Transport Nagar to Charbagh will be operational from 6 am to 10 pm daily.
- Speaking on the occasion, Rajnath, who represents Lucknow in Lok Sabha, said the metro rail has opened the doors to infrastructure development in the city. “Lucknow will now be known as the city of metro rail,” he added. Dedicating the project to former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Singh said, “Atalji was an MP from Lucknow and as PM, he had launched the first metro rail project in the country in Delhi.”
NHAI awards first international project in Myanmar to Punj Lloyd-Varaha
- The National Highway Authority of India has awarded its first international project in Myanmar to a joint venture of Punj Lloyd-Varaha. This is for the upgradation of the Yagyi–Kalewa section in Myanmar to two lanes with earthern shoulder in the engineering, procurement, and construction mode.
- An official statement said the 120-km-long project was estimated to cost Rs. 1,177.02 crore and is to be completed within 36 months.
- Punj Lloyd-Varaha’s bid was identified as the most competitive among four qualified bidders. It was at Rs. 1,177 crore or 0.0017 per cent lower than the estimated cost.
Sushma Swaraj arrives in Russia on three-day visit to Russia to attained the thrid Easten Economic Forum Summit.
- External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj on Tuesday arrived in Russian port city of Vladivostok on a three-day visit to attend the third Eastern Economic Forum which will deliberate on pressing issues relating to global trade.
- She will also hold bilateral talks with her Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov during which various issues relating to trade, investment and defence cooperation are likely to figure.
- Swaraj is visiting Russia at the invitation of Deputy Prime Minister and Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District Yury Trutnev.
- "The External Affairs Minister's visit reflects the importance attached by India to emerging opportunities in the Russian Far East, and to its strategic partnership with Russia," the external affairs ministry had said last week.
Niti Aayog unveils strategy for national nutrition mission
- The government on Tuesday unveiled the national nutrition strategy which aims at ensuring every child, adolescent girl and woman attains optimal nutritional status by 2022.
- The Integrated Child Development Services Mission would be expanded to form a National Nutrition Mission along the lines of National Health Mission under the ministry of women and child development (WCD), as per the strategy document.
- Federal think tank Niti Aayog, which has authored the strategy, has suggested setting up a steering group for monitoring the progress of mission that will report directly to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
- The outcome of deliberations of an inter-ministerial group, the strategy document titled ‘Nourishing India’ envisages use of tracking and targeting children from birth until they are three years old, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said.
- Describing malnutrition among children as “India’s biggest governance failure”, Kant said one third of the world’s stunted children live in India.
Australia to pay $55mn compensation to Manus Island refugees
- An Australian court has approved the government's offer to pay over $55 million as compensation to refugees detained on the Manus Island in Papua New Guinea. The government had offered the compensation as a settlement after the refugees alleged that they suffered injuries during detention. The compensation will be distributed based on the duration of detention and the injuries sustained.
India and Myanmar today signed 11 agreements in a range of sectors, including one on maritime security cooperation, to further strengthen their multifaceted partnership.
- The MoUs were signed after Prime Minister Narendra Modi held wide-ranging talks with Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi.
- India and Myanmar signed an MoU to strengthen maritime security cooperation. The two sides also signed an agreement for sharing white shipping information to improve data sharing on non-classified merchant navy ships or cargo ships.
- The 11 MoUs also include one between the Election Commission and Union Election of Myanmar, the national level electoral commission of Myanmar. An MoU was also signed to organise cultural exchange programme for the period 2017-2020, according to a statement issued by Ministry of External Affairs. The two countries also signed agreements on cooperation between Myanmar Press Council and Press Council of India, extension of agreement on the establishment of India-Myanmar Centre for Enhancement of IT skill.
Summit /Conference / Events / Host
Brics Summit 2017 Xiamen Live: Make international order more just and equitable, says Xi Jinping
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday sought a strong partnership among Brics (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) nations to spur growth, saying that the bloc has developed a robust framework for cooperation and contributed to the stability in a world “drifting towards uncertainty”.
- Addressing the plenary session of the Brics Summit in China’s Xiamen city, Modi said trade and economy were the foundations of cooperation among Brics. He also called for the creation of a Brics rating agency to cater to financing the needs of sovereign and corporate entities of developing countries.
India to host Commonwealth Weightlifting Championships in 2019
- India will host the 2019 edition of the Commonwealth (Youth, Junior and Senior) Weightlifting Championships.
- The Executive Board of Commonwealth Weightlifting Federation met today at Gold Coast, Australia and decided to allot the 2019 edition of the competitions to India.
- The current edition of the tournament is being held at the Gold Coast.
- India’s Saikhom Mirabai Chanu and K Sanjita Chanu bagged a gold medal each at their respective weight categories on Tuesday to book berths at next year’s Commonwealth Games to be held at the same Australian city.
Awards & Honours
Man Kaur, a 101-year-old Chandigarh-based sprinter, has been included in the September nominees for the 'Laureus World Best Sporting Moment of 2017'.
- Kaur has been selected for her performance at April's World Masters Games, where she won gold after finishing the 100-metre sprint in 74 seconds. "I feel thrilled. I'm feeling the same way as any youngster would," said Kaur.
Sports: Awards & Honours
Indian shooter Ankur Mittal settled for the silver medal in the double trap event of the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Shotgun Championship.
- Although Mittal led from the front since the word go, it was in the final four shots when Russia's Vitaly Fokeev took over and eventually won the finals.
- Mittal finished with 66 points in contrast to Fokeev's 68. China's Binyuan Hu settled for the bronze with 50 points in the summit showdown.
- The 25-year-old shot brilliantly throughout the day, finishing top in the qualification round with a score of 145 out of a possible 150.
- He shot the score of 28, 30, 29, 30, 28 in five rounds of the qualification.
- Meanwhile, in the finals of the juniors' double trap event, 17-year-old Ahvar Rizvi also clinched a silver medal with a score of 66 points.
Indian captain Virat Kohli became the fastest player to score 15,000 runs in international cricket during the one-off T20I against Sri Lanka.
- Kohli achieved the feat in his 333rd international innings, overtaking Hashim Amla who took 336 innings to score 15,000 international runs. Kohli has scored 8,587 ODI, 4,658 Test and over 1,750 T20I runs.
Gauri Lankesh, Noted Journalist and Dissenter, Shot Dead in Bengaluru
- The well-known journalist and editor Gauri Lankesh, a household name for readers in Karnataka because of her sharp writing and bold views, was shot dead at her residence in Bengaluru late on September 5.
- According to The Hindu, Lankesh was shot three times by unidentified men at close range at around 8 pm at the entrance of her house in Rajarajeshwari Nagar.
- She was editor of the weekly Lankesh Patrike – a magazine that has been described as an “anti-establishment” publication – and had recently come under attack for her views against the communal politics of the Sangh parivar in Karnataka. The state, which is ruled by the Congress, goes to the polls later this year.