52nd Annual Meetings of AfDB held in Gujarat
India hosted 52nd Annual Meetings of the African Development Bank (AfDB) from 22nd to 26th May 2017 in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. This is the first time that the Annual Meetings of AfDB were held in India.
i. Union minister Piyush Goyal launched the 3rd International Solar Alliance (ISA) programme on ‘scaling up mini-grids and micro-grids’
ii. Nauru , Djibouti, Comoros, Cote d’Ivoire, Somalia and Ghana signed the International Solar Alliance (ISA) framework agreement on the sidelines of African Development Bank (AfDB) meeting in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
Nagpur becomes first city with electric mass mobility system
On May 26, 2017, Nagpur earned the distinction of becoming India’s first city with electric mass mobility system as Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis along with Union Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari flagged off taxi aggregator Ola’s electronic vehicle (EV) services in the city.
i. Ola’s 200-strong fleet of EVs comprise taxis, buses and rickshaws. 100 new e2o Plus cars of Mahindra are also a part of this fleet. Rest of the vehicles have been sourced from other Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), including Tata Motors, Kinetic, BYD and TVS.
ii. Ola has invested more than Rs 50 crore in EVs and for setting up charging infrastructure.
Union Minister Vijay Goel flags off Slum Yuva Daud
Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Vijay Goel flagged off the Slum Yuva Daud to mark the beginning of the Adopt Slum Campaign in New Delhi.
i. It was initiated by the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports and Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan.
ii. The run started from Delhi University’s Shankarlal Hall and ended at the Rugby Stadium with participation of about 5000 youngsters from various slums of Delhi.
India-Pacific islands conference held in Fiji
India’s Ministry of External Affairs hosted the ‘India-Pacific Islands Sustainable Development Conference’ in Suva, Fiji, on 25th and 26th May 2017.
More Information about ‘India-Pacific Islands Sustainable Development Conference’:
i. The conference was inaugurated by Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, the Acting Prime Minister of Fiji.
ii. It was held under the framework of the Forum for India Pacific Islands Co-operation (FIPIC). The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) was key knowledge partner.
iii. Minister of State for External Affairs, Gen. (Dr.) V K Singh hosted the conference. He also announced that India will contribute US$ 1 million to Fiji’s Trust Fund for their Presidency of COP-23 to be held in November 2017.
Issues discussed at ‘India-Pacific Islands Sustainable Development Conference’:
Blue economy, Adaptation-mitigation practices for climate change, Disaster preparedness Health, International Solar Alliance and Finding practical solutions to Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) implementation.
♦ Capital: Suva
♦ Currency: Fijian dollar
Nepalese Sherpa Scales Everest For Record 21 Times
On May 27, 2017, 47-year-old Kami Rita Sherpa scripted history by becoming the third climber to scale Mount Everest for a record 21 times.
i. He became one of the three climbers in the world to hold the record for most of the summits on Mt Everest. Earlier, Apa Sherpa and Phurba Tashi Sherpa have scaled the highest peak 21 times.
ii. Everest (8,848 metre) was first scaled in year 1953 by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay.
iii. Since then, nearly 300 mountaineers have lost their lives in an attempt to scale Mt Everest. It is estimated that more than 200 dead bodies are still lying on the mountain.
BANKING & FINANCE
RBI to observe financial literacy week from June 5-9
RBI has decided to observe the week June 5-9, 2017 as Financial Literacy Week across the country.
i. The literacy week will focus on four broad themes that is KYC, Exercising Credit Discipline, Grievance Redressal and Going Digital (UPI and *99#).
ii. Banks are advised to conduct special camps on each of the five days in unbanked areas.
iii. An online quiz will be hosted for the general public on the four broad themes to generate interest/awareness about financial literacy.
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra,
♦ Established in 1 April 1935
♦ Governor: Urjit Patel
Apple opens first Southeast Asia store in Singapore
Apple has opened its first store in Southeast Asia at Singapore.
i. Apple already has almost 500 stores globally with more than a million visitors daily.
ii. Apart from Singapore it has stores located in Hong Kong, China and Japan in Asia.
iii. Apple expects this store to be one of the most of the most popular stores in the world.
The tech giant celebrated its 40th anniversary last year.
♦ Capital: Singapore (city-state)
♦ President: Tony Tan
♦ Prime Minister: Lee Hsien Loong
Govt permits DIPP to grant industrial licences to defence manufacturers
The government has announced the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) to grant Industrial licences to defence manufacturers.
i. DIPP will now process the applications for grant of licence for manufacture of defence items.
ii. Before DIPP the Home Ministry was carrying out this exercise.
iii. The department, under the commerce and industry ministry, is mainly responsible for formulation of polices with regard to promotion of foreign investment and manufacturing industries.
iv. DIPP has mentioned that all the interested entrepreneurs, industries, companies to apply with details to the Senior Development Officer.
i. The Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion was established in the year 1995 and in the year 2000 Department of Industrial Development was merged with it.
ii. Chairman of DIPP is Ramesh Abhishek
iii. It is responsible for formulation and implementation of promotional and developmental measures for growth of the industrial sector.
JSPL commissions Odisha’s largest integrated steel plant
Jindal Steel and Power Ltd (JSPL) has inaugrated the largest integrated steel plant of Odisha with the commissioning of the country’s largest blast furnace at Angul.
i. The Angul steel plant has been expanded from two million tonne per annum (MTPA) to six MTPA.
ii. The plant was set up at an investment of about Rs 33,000 crore.
iii. JSPL became India’s fourth largest steelmaker after JSW, SAIL and Tata Steel.
iv. JSPL has inaugurated the state of the art six million tonnes per annum steel plant, Odisha.
v. It would provide direct employment to around 30,000 people and indirect employment to more than one lakh people.
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
Pranab Mukharjee presented the Dr. Ambedkar National Awards
The President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee has presented the Dr. Ambedkar National Awards or the years 2011, 2012 and 2014 on May 26, 2017 in New Delhi.
i. Dr. Ambedkar National Awards has been given for outstanding contribution to the promotion of social understanding and for the upliftment of weaker sections of the society.
ii. The winners of Dr. Ambedkar National Awards Professorare as follows:
1.S K Thorat, a well-known scholar
2.Samta Sainik Dal’ a non-political organization founded by Dr. Ambedkar
3.Amar Sewa Sangam an institution working in the field of empowering differently abled persons.
4.Shri BabuLal Nirmal, a social activist from Rajasthan.
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
International Fertiliser Association hires Rakesh Kapur as Chairman
Rakesh Kapoor has been appointed a chairman of International Fertilizer Association (IFA).
i. Rakesh Kapoor is a Joint Managing Director of Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO).
ii. IFFCO is the World’s largest fertilizer and marketing Cooperative represents 50 Million farmers across the country.
iii. IFA’s Annual Conference held from May 22nd – 24th in Marrakech, Morocco in which 1400 participants were present.
iv. He is the third Indian to hold this prestigious position in IFA’s 90 years’ history.
v. Rakesh Kapur is a Mechanical Engineer from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi.He has joined as CFO of IFFCO in 2005
♦ IFA HQ- Paris France
♦ IFA is the global Fertilizer Association having about 500 Members Worldwide representing 68 countries.
Vani Sarraju Rao appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Finland
Ms. Vani Sarraju Rao has appointed the next Ambassador of India to Finland.
i. He is presently Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs.
ii. She is expected to take up her assignment shortly.
♦ Capital: Helsinki
♦ President: Sauli Niinisto
♦ Prime Minister: Juha Sipila
♦ Currency: Euro
Syed Ghayorul Hasan Rizvi assumes charge of Chairman of National Commission for Minorities
Syed Ghayorul Hasan Rizvi has assumed a charge of the Chairman of the National Commission for Minorities in New Delhi.
i. He served as Chairman, U.P Minority Finance Development Corporation Ltd.
ii. Syed Ghayorul Hasan Rizvi is a graduate in Arts and also holds Diploma in Mechanics.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
World’s highest gain high-power laser amplifier developed in UK
The world’s highest gain high-power laser amplifier that could amplify sounds from rustling of leavesto that of a jumbo jet.
i. It has been developed in the UK.
ii. The laser developed at the University of Strathclyde.
iii. It helps in bringing new radiotherapy modalities for the treatment of cancer.
iv. It works relatively long, high-energy laser pulse that is made to collide in plasma with a short, very low energy pulse.
v. It was funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.
vi. These lasers will lead to new science and technology.
vii. The highest power lasers in the world will be available for use at three research centres.
viii. They are the part of the European Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI) project.
NASA’s Juno Spacecraft Discovers Earth-Sized Storms on Jupiter
NASA’s Juno spacecraft has discovered the Earth-sized cyclones at the poles of the Jupiter.
i. Both the poles of the Jupiter were found to be covered with Earth-sized swirling storms which are densely clustered and rubbing together.
ii. The spacecraft flew for about 4,200 km of Jupiter’s swirling cloud top.
iii. Measurements of Jupiter’s magnetosphere indicate that Jupiter has a stronger magnetic field than expected which is more irregular in shape.
iv. The next flyby of the Juno Probe has been scheduled for July 11.
v. During the flyby, the spacecraft will fly directly over Jupiter’s Great Red Spot.
About Juno Spacecraft
Juno was launched in August 2011 to study Jupiter’s composition and evolution. It will provide vital clues to how the planet has formed and evolved.
♦ The unmanned spacecraft had successfully entered Jupiter’s orbit in July 2016.
♦ It’s the first solar powered spacecraft to orbit Jupiter.
♦ The spacecraft has been named after the Roman goddess Juno, the wife of Jupiter who is considered as the god of the sky in ancient Greco-Roman mythology.
New species of bus-sized fossil reptile found in Russia
The new species of a fossil pliosaur (large predatory marine reptile from the ‘age of dinosaur’) has been found in Russia.
i. According to international team of scientists It has profoundly change how we understand the evolution of the group.
ii. The skull of the new species dubbed “Luskhanitilensis,” meaning the Master Spirit from the Volga river is 1.5m in length, indicating a large animal.
♦ Capital: Moscow
♦ Currency: Russian ruble
♦ President: Vladimir Putin
Man United beat Ajax to claim Europa League title
Football club Manchester United has won the Europa League title after defeating Ajax Amsterdam in the final match.
i. Owing to weak defence by Ajax, Manchester United built a two-goal lead early in the second half and retained it till the end.
ii. This victory has also fetched an automatic spot for Manchester United in next season’s UEFA Champions League group phase.
iii. Manchester United has now joined Ajax, Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Juventus in an elite band of teams to have won all three of UEFA’s major club trophies, namely European Champion Clubs’ Cup/Champions League, UEFA Cup/Europa League, and European Cup Winners’ Cup.
iv. Europa League: Formerly known as UEFA Cup, is an annual football club competition organised by UEFA since 1971 for eligible European football clubs.
Pakistani music director Wajahat Attre dies
Pakistan’s eminent music director Wajahat Attre, who composed the music of more than 200 films, passed away on May 26, 2017 in Lahore. He was 68.
Brief Biography of Wajahat Attre:
i. Attre was born in Puna (Gujarat),India in 1945.After Partition, his family migrated to Pakistan.
ii. He was a son of noted music composer Rasheed Attre.
iii. He has several popular film songs to his credit such as “Wagdi nadi da paani”, “Vay ik tera pyar menu mileya”, “Anda teray layi reshmi rumal”.
iv. He worked with many eminent singers including Noor Jehan, Humera Channa, Saira Naseem, Shabnam Majeed, Saima Mumtaz and Azra Jahan.