13 January 2017 - Daily Current Affairs

13 January 2017 - Daily Current Affairs

International Affairs

World's largest solar thermal plant to be built in South Australia
13 January 2017 - Daily Current Affairs

  • The world's largest solar-thermal power plant has been given development approval by the South Australian government.
  • The capacity of the plant will be 150-megawatt.
  • The construction of power plant will begin in 2018 at an estimated cost of $509 million.

Sri Lanka lifts ban on women buying, selling alcohol

  • Sri Lanka has revoked a 38-year ban on selling alcohol to women and employing them in places where the brews are produced and sold.
  • The notification revoking the ban to restore gender equality and promote tourism.
  • The ban had been in force since 1979, the early years of Sri Lanka embracing an open market economy.
  • The government also allowed liquor outlets to stay open an hour later, until 10 p.m.

India, Bhutan jointly unveil 'Special logo'

  • The External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bhutan Damcho Dorji, jointly unveiled the ‘Special logo’ for the Golden Jubilee Celebrations in New Delhi and Thimphu through video-conference.
  • Reaffirmed India’s abiding commitment to building on the strong foundations of the cooperative partnership with Bhutan.
  • Exemplary ties of friendship and cooperation between India and Bhutan are built on shared values, priorities, mutual respect and sensitivity to each other’s interests.

Saudi Arabia allows women at football game for the first time

  • For the first time, Saudi Arabia has allowed women to spectate a football match, part of an easing of strict rules on gender separation by the ultra-conservative Muslim country.
  • Women fans filled into a stadium in the city of Jeddah.
  • The country's first car showroom dedicated to female customers was also opened.

India a top borrower from China-sponsored AIIB in 2017

  • India has emerged as a top borrower from the China-sponsored Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) with USD 1.5 billion worth of loans last year and USD three billion more in the pipeline.
  • Indonesia has emerged as the second largest borrower with about USD 600 million loans.
  • China is the largest shareholder with 26.06% voting shares in the bank.
  • India is the second largest shareholder with 7.5% followed by Russia 5.93% and Germany with 4.5%.
Note: The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is a multilateral development bank that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region.

National Appointments

Indu Malhotra becomes 1st woman lawyer directly appointed for SC judgeship

  • The Supreme Court collegium has recommended the name of senior advocate ‘Indu Malhotra’ as the first woman lawyer to be directly appointed as a judge of the apex court.
  • She will be the seventh woman judge since independence to make it to the Supreme Court.
  • In 1989, the first woman to be appointed as a judge of the apex court was Justice M Fathima Beevi.
Note: In collegium system, the shortlisted candidates are scrutinized by a collegium of five senior-most judges of the apex court headed by Chief Justice of India before being cleared for the appointment.

National Affairs

EC panel to suggest changes to RP Act

  • In view of social media expansion, Election Commission (EC) of India has constituted a 14-member committee chaired by Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha to suggest changes to Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act.
  • The Act prohibits poll campaign in the last 48 hours of voting.
  • The Committee will study the impact of social media during the silence period and suggest modifications to the election law and model code of conduct.

TRAI cuts ISD incoming call termination rate to 30 paise

  • he Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has slashed international incoming call termination rate to 30 paise from 53 paise.
  • The new rate will be effective from 1st of February.
  • TRAI has reduced the termination charges payable by an International long Distance Operator to the access provider.
Note: The telecom firms levy termination charge on operators from whose networks calls have been made, for transmitting them to the subscriber.

J&K govt to open 17 new degree colleges in the state

  • According to the Jammu and Kashmir(J&K) State Minister for Higher Education Altaf Bhukhari, the state cabinet has approved the opening of 17 new degree college in the state.
  • These colleges shall be established in the uncovered areas of the State adding that the locations for these colleges are being worked out by the department.

Banking & Finance

Paytm launches investment arm, to invest USD 10 million

  • Paytm has set up a new entity called Paytm Money Ltd to offer investment and wealth management product, invest around USD 10 million upfront in the new entity.
  • Paytm Money is the fourth product from One97’s stable after Paytm Mall, Paytm Payments Bank and Paytm wallet.
  • It will be available as a separate mobile application to users.

Retail inflation rises to 5.21% in December

  • Retail inflation crossed the RBI's comfort level and rose to 5.21% in December.
  • The retail inflation, based on Consumer Price Index (CPI), was 4.88% in November.
  • As per the data released by the Central Statistics Office, CSO, inflation for the food basket increased to 4.96 percent in December from 4.42 percent in the preceding month.
  • The data revealed that eggs, vegetables and fruits became costlier, while inflation moderated in case of cereals and pulses.

Sports

Sarjubala Devi claims gold in National Women's Boxing Championship

  • Former world silver medallist Sarjubala Devi has won the gold in 48 kg category in the National Women's Boxing Championships in Rohtak.
  • She was also given the best boxer trophy.
  • Sarjubala (Manipur) edged past Ritu (Haryana) 3-2 to clinch lone gold medal and her second successive national title.
  • Former world and Asian champion L Sarita Devi picked up a gold medal in the 60 kgs category.
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