Current Affairs Update – 9-10 July, 2017

Hello and welcome to exampundit. Here are the Important Current Affairs of 9 & 10 July, 2017. These are very important for the upcoming IBPS PO, IBPS RRB, NABARD Grade A & Other Exams.

Banking & Financial News
Union Government exempts import of aircraft, aircraft engines from
ambit of GST

  • The Union government has exempted
    the import of aircraft, aircraft engines and its parts via leasing route from
    the purview of the Goods and Services Tax (GST).
  • A notification from the Union
    Finance Ministry said that airlines will not have to pay GST at the time of
    import. However, lease rentals will be subject to GST.
  • This exemption from GST can be
    seen as a major relief for the aviation industry as it has been asking for
    relief as it was facing the dual levy of 5 per cent at the time of import and
    another 5 per cent at the time of payment of lease rent.
  • Earlier, the concerns of the
    aviation industry were raised by the civil aviation ministry on several
    occasions before the revenue department.
  • The Federation of Indian Airlines
    (FIA) had informed the government that the dual levy on aircraft leasing, 5 per
    cent at the time of import and 5 per cent at the time of payment of lease
    rentals, will result in a huge financial burden to the airlines. Reports
    suggest that this double taxation would have resulted in a loss of Rs 800 crore
    to the aviation industry on aircraft lease.
  • The Federation of Indian Airlines
    (FIA) is an association that represents major domestic airlines IndiGo,
    SpiceJet, Jet Airways, GoAir and Air India.
India to import crude oil from US for first time

  • India, the world’s third-largest
    oil importer, will import crude oil from the United States for the first time
    after Indian Oil Corp bought a cargo that will be delivered in October. The
    purchase comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the US in June
    when President Donald Trump said his country looked forward to exporting more
    energy products to India.
  • IOC bought 1.6 million barrels of
    US Mars crude, a heavy, high-sulphur grade, and 400,000 barrels of Western
    Canadian Select that will be delivered onboard a Very Large Crude Carrier,
    IOC’s head of finance, A K Sharma, told Reuters.
  • IOC had to obtain special
    permission from the shipping ministry to buy the cargo on a delivered basis as
    local regulations favour the use of Indian flagged carriers for imports, Sharma
  • India is the latest Asian country
    to buy US crude after South Korea, Japan, China, Thailand, Australia and Taiwan
    as the countries seek to diversify oil imports from other regions after the
    OPEC cuts drove up prices of Middle East heavy-sour crude, or grades with a
    high sulphur content.
  • Indian refiners are seeking these
    heavy, high-sulphur grades as feedstocks after modifications at their plants
    make it easier to process these types of crudes, which typically sell at a
    lower cost relative to other oil types. The US could become an alternative
    source for the Indian companies for these grades.
  • A second Indian refiner Bharat
    Petroleum Corp Ltd also planned to buy its first ever US crude oil cargo and
    has issued a purchase tender.

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News related to India and states
President Pranab Mukherjee launches digital initiatives to promote

  • President Pranab Mukherjee on 9
    July 2017 launched four major digital initiatives in to push e-education. These
    digital initiatives are SWAYAM, SWAYAM Prabha and National Academic Depository.
  • All these digital initiatives are
    managed and supervised by the Union Ministry of Human Resource and
  • An indigenously designed Massive
    Open Online Course (MOOC), SWAYAM will host all the courses taught in
    classrooms from 9th class till post-graduation.
  • More than 400 Courses are available
    on SWAYAM covering all the engineering and non-engineering subjects at
    undergraduate and post-graduate levels.
  • The UGC has also issued
    Regulation that allows transfer of credits earned through the courses done
    through SWAYAM into the academic record of the students.
  • The platform has been constructed
    by Microsoft with totally indigenous efforts and it can be accessed by anyone
    and anywhere at any time.
  • The 32 SWAYAM Prabha DTH Channels
    aim to provide high quality educational content developed by experts through 32
    DTH (direct to home) Television Channels.
  • The SWAYAM Prabha channels are
    available for free for anyone who has a set top box to receive either DD Free
    Dish or DishTV. There is no monthly charge for viewing these channels.
  • These channels transmit 4 hours
    of fresh content every day and contain lectures from the best teachers.
  • These channels include the
    IIT-PAL channels which were intended to help students taking the prestigious
    JEE examination taught by the IIT faculty.
  • These channels will help students
    in the rural areas and in the remote areas where IT infrastructure have not
    penetrated so well. 
Ahmedabad becomes first Indian city to get UNESCO Heritage tag

  • The Indian city of Ahmedabad on 8
    July 2017 was declared India’s first World Heritage City, recognising heritage
    value of the walled city’s unique heritage.
  • The announcement was made by the
    World Heritage Committee (WHC) of UNESCO following a meeting in Krakwo, Poland.
  • After the announcement, the city
    has now joined the likes of heritage cities like Paris, Edinburg, Galle in Sri
    Lanka, Cairo, among others.
  • Ahmedabad’s nomination received
    huge support from around 20 countries, who lauded the peaceful co-existence of
    dominant Hindu, Islamic and Jain communities in the Walled City area. In 2011,
    the city had figured in UNESCO’s tentative list.
  • As per Mukesh Kumar, Ahmedabad
    Municipal Commissioner, there are 2600 heritage sites and over two dozen
    Architectural Survey of India (ASI) protected monuments and sites in the walled
Union Government proposes scheme to open residential schools for SC

  • Union Minister Thawar Chand
    Gehlot on 7 July 2017 said that the Union Government has proposed to introduce
    a scheme to open residential schools for scheduled caste girls in educationally
    backward districts.
  • The Union Social Justice and
    Empowerment Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot informed about the proposed school
    while speaking at a regional conference of social welfare ministers from
    Punjab, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh, and
    officials from Chandigarh.
  • He said the schools will have
    classes from VI to XII and 70 per cent of the seats will be reserved for SC
    girls and the remaining for those from BPL families in other categories.
  • The Minister said the Union
    Government is committed to ensuring the welfare of scheduled caste and tribes,
    OBCs and BPL families through the proper implementation of all
    centrally-sponsored social security and welfare schemes.
  • He urged the ministers and
    officials to prepare a report on the financial assistance being given under
    different schemes and by the national financial corporations within a month.
  • Besides, he also informed that
    the Rashtriya Vayoshree Yojana for senior citizens is also being implemented.
    Benefits of these schemes would be given on the first-come-first-serve basis, a
    Haryana government release said quoting him. The minister urged officers to
    send their suggestions and plans on these schemes at the earliest.
India, US, Japan begin Malabar Exercise 2017

  • India, Japan and the United
    States on 10 July 2017 began the joint naval exercise Malabar 2017.
  • Warships, submarines, aircraft
    and personnel from India, Japan and the US will be participating in the Malabar
    exercise in the Bay of Bengal till 17 July 2017. The exercise will feature both
    ashore and at-sea training.
  • The ashore training in Chennai
    will include professional exchanges on carrier strike group operations, maritime
    patrol operations, surface warfare, medical operations, explosive ordnance
    disposal (EOD), helicopter operations, and visit, board, search and seizure
    (VBSS) operations.
  • The at-sea training will be
    conducted in the Bay of Bengal and will be focussed on advancing
    military-to-military coordination and capacity to plan and execute tactical
    operations in a multinational environment.
World News
Brazil’s Valongo Wharf Archaeological Site added to UNESCO’s World
Heritage List

  • The World Heritage Committee of
    UNESCO on 9 July 2017 added Valongo Wharf Archaeological Site in the World
    Heritage List.
  • The committee, during its meeting
    in Krakow, Poland, stated that Valongo is the most important physical trace of
    the arrival of African slaves on the American continent
  • Valongo Wharf Archaeological Site
    is located in central Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and encompasses the whole of
    Jornal do Comercio Square.
  • The place where the site stands
    is the former harbour area of Rio de Janeiro where the old stone wharf was
    built for enslaved Africans who arrived in South America through Valongo from
    1811 onwards. An estimated 900000 Africans arrived at that time.
122 countries adopted global treaty banning nuclear weapons

  • The global treaty that bans
    nuclear weapons was adopted at the United Nations on 8 July 2017 despite
    opposition from the United States, Britain, France and other nuclear powers
    that boycotted negotiations.
  • The treaty was adopted by a vote
    of 122 in favour with one country the Netherlands voting against while
    Singapore abstained.
  • Costa Rica’s ambassador, Elayne
    Whyte Gomez, the president of the UN conference that negotiated the treaty said
    we have managed to sow the first seeds of a world free of nuclear weapons.
  • None of the nine countries that
    possess nuclear weapons the United States, Russia, Britain, China, France,
    India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel took part in the negotiations or the
    vote. Even Japan the only country to have suffered atomic attacks, in 1945
    boycotted the talks as did most NATO countries.
  • Nuclear powers argue their
    arsenals serve as a deterrent against a nuclear attack and say they remain
    committed to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
Cambodia’s Sambor Prei Kuk temple zone gets UNESCO World Heritage

  • Cambodia’s Sambor Prei Kuk
    archaeological site on 8 July 2017 was inscribed on the UNESCO’S World Heritage
  • The inscription was made during
    the World Heritage Committee’s 41st session in Krakow, Poland.
  • With this, the number of the
    country’s tangible cultural properties in the list is three. The first two
    listed properties are Angkor Archaeological Park inscribed in 1992 and the
    Temple of Preah Vihear included in 2008.
Former Indian Ambassador to the US Naresh Chandra passes away

  • Naresh Chandra, former Indian
    Ambassador to the United States, passed away on 9 July 2017 following a brief
    illness. He was 82.
  • Chandra served as the Indian
    Ambassador to the United States from 1996 to 2001.
  • As the Indian Ambassador to the
    United States from 1996 to 2001, Chandra represented India in the US during the
    turbulent time after 1998 nuclear test.
  • He was awarded the Padma
    Vibhushan, India’s second highest civil awards, in 2007.

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