India-UK Conference on Ease of Doing Business concluded

  • i. The India-UK Conference on Ease of Doing Business concluded in New Delhi on 10 December 2016.
  • ii. This conference on Ease of Doing Business would act as an opportunity to enhance the strategic bilateral partnership between the two nations to the next level.
  • iii. The two-day conference was jointly inaugurated by Ramesh Abhishek, Secretary of Ministry of Commerce and Industry and Dominic Asquith, the British High Commissioner.
  • iv. This partnership on Ease of Doing Business of the two nations is important because it will play a role that the business environment plays in encouraging trade, investment, innovation and economic growth.

28th Edition of SIMCON 2016, chaired by I&B Minister, M. Venkaiah Naidu

  • i. The 28th State Information Ministers Conference (SIMCON), 2016, was organised by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting from December 9 to December 10, 2016 at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi.
  • ii. I&B Minister Shri Venkaiah Naidu chaired SIMCON 2016ii. The two day conference was chaired by Minister for Information & Broadcasting, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu.
  • iii. The aim of the confrence is promote partnership among Centre and State, to discuss key issues in the films & broadcasting sector and new initiatives undertaken in the information domain.

Viola Desmond first Canadian woman on banknote

  • i. A black civil rights leader who led a struggle against anti-black segregation and racism in Canada in the 1940s will be the first Canadian woman to figure on a banknote.
  • ii. Viola Desmond will appear on the Canadian $10 bill - replacing the nation's first prime minister John A Macdonald who will be moved to a higher bill - when new banknotes go into circulation in 2018.
  • iii. Desmond, an icon of the human rights and freedoms movement in Canada, was selected from a  list of five iconic Canadian women by Finance Minister Morneau, in accordance with the Bank of Canada Act.

Rajendar Kumar Appointed New CBDT Member

  • i. Senior Indian Revenue Service officer Rajendra Kumar has been appointed as the new Member of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), the policy making body for the Income Tax Department.
  • ii. The orders for appointment of Kumar, a 1980-batch Indian Revenue Service officer, was issued by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet.
  • iii. The Central Board of Direct Taxes is a statutory authority functioning under the Central Board of Revenue Act, 1963. The CBDT is headed by a chairman and can has six members. It is headquartered at New Delhi

Committee headed by Ratan P. Watal submitted its report to Finance Minster to boost Digital Payment

  • i. The committee formed by Finance Ministry to boost Digital Payment system in India that was headed by Shri. Ratan P. Watal submitted its report to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on 09 December 2016.
  • ii. The committee has recommended to bridge the gaps between those are digitally active and those are not, by promoting competition, open access & interoperability in payments.
  • iii. The report also recommended including those group of citizens into the digital payment system who are not well versed with it so that they can use it for their benefit and reduce dependence on cash. Safeguarding of the digital security system should also be maintained.

Rajasthan High Court Strucks SBCs 5% quota.

  • i. The Rajasthan High Court on December 9, 2016, cancelled the Rajasthan Special Backward Classes (SBC) reservation Act 2015 that allowed for 5% quota to Gujjars and five other communities of the state.
  • ii. A division bench of justices M N Bhandari and J K Ranka struck down the notification of October 2015 saying that it was in violation with the 50% limit set by the Supreme Court.
  • iii. In September 2015, the Rajasthan Assembly, passed separate Bills to provide five per cent reservation to Gujjars and other communities under Special Backward Classes (SBC) and 14 per cent to Economically Backward Classes (EBC) of unreserved categories.
  • iv. According to the Act 5% reservation in jobs and educational institutes were given to five communities namely, Gujjars (Gurjars), Banjara (Baldia, Labana), Gadia-Lohar (Gadolia), Raika (Rebari, Debasi), Gadaria (Gaadri, Gayari).

Civil Engineer Iqbal Sayed becomes first Indian to medal at Mr Olympia

  • i. Mumbai's Iqbal Sayed, who works as a civil engineer with Reliance Infrastructure and Mumbai Metro, became the first Indian to win a medal at the Mr Olympia event, after securing a silver medal in the event.
  • ii. Sayed beat participants from 20 countries to finish second in the Olympia Amateur Asia 2016's Classic Bodybuilding category.

Virat Kohli Becomes First Indian Captain To Score Three Double Centuries

  • i. Virat Kohli became the first Indian to score three double hundreds in a year, playing against England on 11th December 2016.
  • ii. His first-ever Test double century came against West Indies this year, followed by another against New Zealand.
  • iii. There are only three batsmen who had scored three double centuries and one batsman who has scored 4 double centuries in a single year.

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