Current Affairs Update – 24th July, 2015

Hello and welcome to ExamPundit. Here are the Important Current Affairs of 24th July, 2015. These are Important for the 2nd phase of RBI Assistant 2015 Exam.

RBI/Industry
IDFC Gets RBI Nod for Starting Banking
Operation

  • Infrastructure
    financing firm IDFC Ltd today said the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has granted
    banking licence to IDFC Bank for undertaking banking business in the country.
  • “The RBI
    on July 23, 2015 has granted Banking Licence to IDFC Bank Limited for
    undertaking banking business in India under Section 22(1) of the Banking
    Regulation Act, 1949,” IDFC said in a stock exchange filing.
  • IDFC and
    Bandhan Financial Services Pvt Ltd emerged successful out of 25 contenders for
    new bank licences issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in April last year.
    Bandhan Financial got RBI approval last month.
  • IDFC Bank
    plans to start operation from October 1 with an initial loan book of around Rs
    55,000 crore. The bank proposes to start operations with 20 branches.
  • It has almost
    completed the process of demerger of financial undertaking into IDFC Bank.
  • The demerger
    was in accordance with RBI conditions which require IDFC to transfer the
    relevant business activities to the proposed IDFC Bank.

WTO members sealed a deal to cut
tariffs on $1 trillion worth IT products
  • World Trade
    Organization (WTO) members on 24 July 2015 struck a deal to add more than 200
    products to the list of goods covered by zero-tariff and duty-free trade.
  • In value
    terms, the deal cuts tariffs on 1 trillion US dollar worth of information
    technology (IT) products, which is equal to global trade in iron, steel,
    textiles and clothing combined.
  • The deal was
    agreed as part of need to update the 18-year old Information Technology
    Agreement (ITA) as it has become redundant.
  • Products
    added range from advanced computer chips to GPS devices, medical equipment,
    printer cartridges and video-game consoles.
  • This will
    give a major boost to producers of goods ranging from video games to medical
    equipment. Technology manufacturers such as General Electric, Intel, Texas
    Instruments, Microsoft and Nintendo are among the many companies expected to benefit
    from the deal.

Reliance Group, Augur Overseas
Operation signed MoU to manufacture Aerostats and Airships
  • Anil
    Ambani-led Reliance Group through its entity Reliance Unmanned Systems on 23
    July 2015 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Augur Overseas
    Operation of Singapore to manufacture Aerostats and Airships in India.
  • As per the
    MoU, both the parties will collaborate on new technologies for the civil and
    military market as part of the Make in India initiative of Union Government.
    The two companies have agreed to form a joint venture (JV) firm with Reliance
    having 51 percent stake as per Government’s policy.
  • The joint
    venture will be involved in development, production, sales, modification and
    life support for different sizes of Aerostats and Airships. This JV will
    address the requirements of domestic market and also addressable regional/global
    markets.
  • The Augur
    Overseas Operation is a wholly owned subsidiary of Augur Aeronautical Centre.

Lupin acquired US generics company
GAVIS Pharmaceuticals LLC
  • Indian drug
    company Lupin on 23 July 2015 acquired US generics company GAVIS
    Pharmaceuticals and Novel Laboratories (GAVIS) for 880 million US dollars to
    strengthen its presence in the United States.
  • The deal is
    cash-free and debt-free and it will be funded by a bridge loan, with 10 crore
    rupees from existing cash reserves deployed for it.
  • With this
    acquisition, Lupin will get access to a host of specialty generic drugs and
    niche products, mainly in dermatology, gastro-intestinal and injectables.
    GAVIS’s New-Jersey based manufacturing facility will become Lupin’s first
    manufacturing site in the US.
  • Both the
    companies will now have a portfolio of 101 in-market products, 164 cumulative
    filings pending approval and a deep pipeline of products under development for
    the US. The acquisition creates the fifth largest portfolio of ANDA filings
    with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

CSC, HCL form joint venture to provide
technology services, solutions to banks

  • IT companies
    CSC and HCL Technologies have signed an agreement to form a banking software
    and services company to provide technology services and solutions to the
    banking industry.
  • The joint
    venture will invest in platform modernisation and product functionality
    enhancement and will capitalise on the proven capabilities of both companies in
    addressing the multi-billion-dollar, global core banking software market.
  • CSC, which
    serves over 100 premier banking and financial services clients in 15 countries,
    will provide its core banking, cards, payments and default management industry
    talent, software and product development expertise, the release added.
  • HCL will
    provide capital investment, its experience in product engineering and
    application implementation services, as well as banking sales and client
    engagement expertise.

India
FSSAI proposed Draft on regulating
sale of Health Supplements and Nutraceuticals
  • Food Safety
    Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) on 23 July 2015 proposed draft Food Safety
    and Standards Regulations, 2015. The draft in its ambit seeks to regulate
    Health Supplements, Nutraceuticals, Foods for Special Dietary Uses, Foods for
    Special Medical Purpose, Functional Foods, and Novel Food.
  • FSSAI may ban
    the trade of these foods if it is found that the food being placed in the
    market is nor clearly distinguishable from the foods for normal consumption or
    are not suitable for their claimed nutritional purpose or may endanger the
    human health.

Key points in proposed draft
  • No person
    shall manufacture, pack, sell, offer for sale, market or otherwise distribute
    or import any food products referred to in the draft regulations unless they
    comply with the requirements laid down under these regulations.
  • The
    formulation of the foods shall be based on sound medical or nutritional
    principles and supported by validated scientific data, wherever required.
  • Every package
    of food or health supplements shall carry the words FOOD or HEALTH SUPPLEMENT
    and the term ‘NOT FOR MEDICINAL USE’ shall be prominently written on the label.
  • It is
    proposed to fix the limit on maximum usage levels per day for the milk of cow,
    buffalo and camel, ghee, curd, butter, honey, gold, gold foil, silver, pearl in
    ayurveda, siddha and unani ingredients based products.
  • Benefits of
    specialty foods containing ingredients based on ayurveda, unani and siddha and
    other traditional health systems of India, should be shown by science based
    evidence.
  • No hormones
    or steroids or psychotropic ingredients shall be added in these foods.

No citizen or institution has a
fundamental right to affiliation or recognition: SC
  • The Supreme
    Court on 23 July 2015 held that fundamental right given under Article 19(1)(g)
    of the Constitution does not give an institution or a person or a citizen the
    fundamental right to affiliate or recognition of their institutions within the
    meaning of the Article 19(6).
  • Article 19(6)
    providing for reasonable restrictions on fundamental rights reads, “Nothing in
    the 19(1)(g) shall prevent the State from making a law with respect to
    providing necessary professional or technical qualification for practising any
    profession or carrying on any occupation, trade or business.”
  • On the other
    hand, Article 19(1)(g) says that the citizens have been conferred the right to
    practice any profession or carry on any occupation, trade or business.
  • The decision
    of the SC bench comprising of Justice MY Eqbal and Justice Arun Mishra relied
    on 1993 judicial case which said that “education has always been treated in
    this country as religious and charitable activity and making it commercial is
    opposed to the ethos, tradition and sensibilities of this nation. A citizen of
    this country may have a right to establish an educational institution but no
    citizen, person or institution has a right, much less of fundamental right, to
    affiliation or recognition.”

Maharashtra cabinet approved scheme
for development of villages around Tiger reserves

  • Maharashtra
    Cabinet on 23 July 2015 approved Shyamaprasad Mukherjee Jan Van Vikas Scheme.
    The scheme proposed by Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar in the state’s annual
    budget 2015-16 aims at creation of comprehensive development of villages in the
    buffer zones of tiger reserves and around them.
  • Its
    objectives are to reduce the man-animal conflict and achieve sustainable
    development of these villages. The scheme also aims at reducing the dependence
    of villagers on the forest.
  • The scheme
    will seek to boost the supplementary businesses to farming activities and
    create alternative employment possibilities in these areas. The scheme will be
    launched on project basis from 2015-16 to 2019-2020.

IMI Kolkata signs pact with Sinchuan
University of China
  • International
    Management Institute (IMI) Kolkata has signed an agreement with the Sinchuan
    University of China for exchange of students and researchers and joint work
    programmes.
  • The agreement
    was signed by Arindam Banik, Director, IMI Kolkata, and Xie Heping, President,
    Sinchuan University, last week, IMI said in a release.
  • Based on the
    agreement, four students from Sinchuan University shall be spending a trimester
    in IMI Kolkata.

World
Earth-like exoplanet Kepler 452b
discovered
  • Earth-like
    exoplanet Kepler 452b was discovered by Kepler Mission. The discovery of it was
    made public during the NASA press conference on 23 July 2015. It resides in a
    year-long orbit in the habitable zone of a Sun-like star in the constellation
    of Cygnus some 1400 light-years away.
  • The planet is
    a near-twin of Earth orbiting Sunlike Star and is estimated to 1.6 times (60
    percent) larger than Earth.
  • It is likely
    rocky and could have a mass of anywhere between one to five times that of our
    own planet.
  • In addition
    to Kepler 452b, the Kepler Mission also discovered 11 yet-to-be-confirmed
    candidate planets that appear to be small, rocky and potentially suitable for
    life.
  • One of them,
    presently known only as KOI-7235.01, looks to be only 15 percent larger than
    Earth, and orbits right in the middle of its star’s habitable zone. If
    confirmed, it would surpass even Kepler 452 b to become the most Earth-like
    world astronomers have ever found beyond our solar system.

Mosquirix, world’s first malaria
vaccine, approved by European Medicines Agency
  • The world’s
    first malaria vaccine called RTS,S or Mosquirix on 24 July 2015 got approval
    from European Medicines Agency (EMA).
  • The vaccine
    was licensed for use on babies aged between 6 weeks and 17 months in Africa,
    which is at the highest risk of the mosquito-borne disease.
  • The vaccine
    developed by British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline in partnership with the PATH
    Malaria Vaccine Initiative, would be the first licensed human vaccine against a
    parasitic disease and could help prevent millions of cases of malaria.
  • The vaccine
    is also part-funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and it was in
    development since 1987 under a team of researchers led by Joe Cohen, a GSK
    scientist.

First All Women Trans Continental road
expedition from Delhi to London flagged off
  • First All
    Women Trans Continental Road Expedition from Delhi to London was flagged off on
    23 July 2015. The expedition, which started from Major Dhyanchand Stadium of
    New Delhi, was flagged off by Union Minister of Chemical and Fertilizers,
    Ananth Kumar and Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Youth Affairs &
    Sports Sarbananda Sonowal.
  • The three
    woman participants, namely Nidhi Tiwari, Rashmi Koppar and Soumaya Goel, will
    reach United Kingdom in 55 days. During the journey they will cover a distance of
    15000 kms via Myanmar, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Russia,
    Ukraine, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, Belgium and France.
  • This all
    women team will be travelling in one vehicle without any backup vehicle and the
    journey will be sponsored by Mahindra First Choice Wheels Limited.

Awards
& Honors –
Peter Higgs received Royal Society’s
Copley Medal, the world’s oldest scientific prize

  • Nobel Prize
    winner Professor Peter Higgs on 20 July 2015 won the world’s oldest scientific
    prize, the Royal Society’s Copley Medal. With this, 86-year old Higgs joined
    the ranks of Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking.
  • He was
    awarded the medal for his fundamental contribution to particle physics and his
    pioneering work on the theory of the Higgs boson that explains the origin of
    mass in elementary particles. The presence of Higgs boson was confirmed by the
    experiments at Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in 2012.
  • Modern
    physics suggests that matter consists of a set of particles that act as building
    blocks and that between these particles lie forces that are controlled by
    another set of particles. A fundamental property of the majority of particles
    is that they have a mass.

Appointments
Suresh Narayanan appointed new Nestle
India MD after Maggi scare

  • Swiss food
    group Nestle has replaced the head of its Indian operations as the company
    battles its worst ever public relations crisis in the country, following a food
    scare that forced it to withdraw its popular instant noodles.
  • Nestle India
    said in a statement on Friday that its managing director for India, Etienne
    Benet, would move to the group’s head office in Switzerland.
  • He will be
    replaced by Suresh Narayanan, a former Nestle India executive and currently
    chief executive of the company’s Philippines unit. He will take the reins on
    Aug. 1.
  • Nestle has
    been at the centre of India’s worst food scare in a decade, after a regulator
    in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh in May found excess lead in a sample of
    its hugely popular Maggi noodles.

Sports
Shubham Jaglan won IJGA World Stars of
Junior Golf event 2015
  • 10-year old
    Shubham Jaglan on 22 July 2015 won the IJGA World Stars of Junior Golf event in
    Las Vegas. Jaglan is the son of a milkman from rural Haryana, India.
  • He shot a
    three round score of 106 winning by a five-stroke margin, ahead of two
    Americans Justin Dang and Sihan Sandhu and Thailand’s Pongsapak Laopakdee for
    the Boys 9-10 years category title.
  • He also
    scripted a scintillating one-stroke win at the Junior World Golf Championships
    that was held at Welk Resort Fountain Course in California.

List
Forbes Asia’s Fabulous 50 List of the
year 2015 released
  • The Forbes
    Asia’s Fabulous 50 list of the year 2015 was released on 22 July 2015. The Fab
    50 list is an annual honor roll highlighting some of the brightest stars in the
    Asia Pacific. The companies from China dominate this year’s list that depicts
    the region’s best big publicly traded companies.
  • The list was
    dominated by 25 Chinese firms, while India claimed the second-highest number of
    companies in the list with a total of 10 firms. South Korea stood at third
    place with four companies in the list.
  • Four
    countries Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore each have two companies
    listed in the list and Taiwan, Japan and Indonesia have one each.
  • Indian
    Companies in the list
  • The list
    depicts India’s HDFC Bank as the brightest star. HDFC is the second-largest
    bank in India’s private sector, after ICICI Bank. The bank now has a market
    capitalisation of 43 billion US dollar, nearly 32 million customers and a
    network spanning more than 4000 branches in almost 2500 towns and cities.

The Indian companies on the list are:
  1. Aurobindo
    Pharma
  2. HCL
    Technologies
  3. HDFC Bank
  4. Lupin
  5. Motherson
    Sumi Systems
  6. Sun
    Pharmaceutical Industries
  7. Tata
    Consultancy Services
  8. Tata Motors
  9. Tech Mahindra
  10. Titan



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