Home Daily Updates IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 27 -JANUARY - 2016
IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 27 -JANUARY - 2016
Wednesday, 27 January 2016 03:44

 

 

DAILY NEWS UPDATES

27 - JANUARY - 2016

 

ANURADHA ROY WON 2016 DSC PRIZE FOR SLEEPING ON JUPITER

Indian author Anuradha Roy won the prestigious DSC Prize for South Asian Literature for her novelSleeping on Jupiter at the Galle Literary Festival in Sri Lanka.

Roy was awarded the prize and a unique trophy by Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

The six shortlisted authors in contention for the prestigious prize were:

UK-based Indian-origin author Akhil Sharma for Family Life

KR Meera's Hangwoman (Translated by J Devika)

Mirza Waheed's The Book of Gold Leaves

Neel Mukherjee's The Lives of Others

Raj Kamal Jha for She Will Build Him A City

Who is Anuradha Roy?

Roy is an award-winning Indian novelist, journalist and editor.

She did her schooling at South Point School, Kolkata followed by St Thomas School, Kidderpore.

She studied English Literature at Presidency College, Calcutta and Cambridge University.

She is the co-founder of Permanent Black, a publishing house started in 2000.

Her first novel, An Atlas of Impossible Longing has been translated into fifteen languages across the world. It was named by World Literature Today as one of the 60 Essential English Language Works of Modern Indian Literature.

About DSC Prize for South Asian Literature

The DSC Prize for South Asian Literature is a literary prize awarded annually to writers of any ethnicity or nationality writing about South Asia with themes such as culture, politics, history or people.

The prize was instituted by DSC Limited, an Indian infrastructure and construction company.

It is for an original full-length novel written in English, or translated into English.

The winner of the prize receives 2800000 rupees (about 50000 US dollars).

In 2015, Jhumpa Lahiri won the prize for her novel The Lowland. Cyrus Mistry won it for Chronicle of a Corpse Bearer in 2014.

NASA LAUNCHED SPACEX FALCON 9 ROCKET WITH JASON-3 OCEAN-MONITORING SATELLITE

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) launched the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from California’s Vandenberg Air Force Base in the USA.

The rocket carried the ocean monitoring satellite Jason-3 on board and successfully inserted it in the desired orbit. However, the rocket failed a return landing on a drone platform in the Pacific Ocean.

The Jason-3 satellite will examine the topography of the ocean floor to help study effects of climate change or human-induced changes on the ocean.

Features of Jason-3 Mission

• It is the fourth mission in U.S.-European series of satellite missions that measure the height of the ocean surface.

• It is also expected to help the USA in better forecasting of hurricane forecasting and marine navigation.

• It will extend the time series of ocean surface topography measurements (the hills and valleys of the ocean surface) begun by the TOPEX/Poseidon satellite mission in 1992 and continuing through the currently operating Jason-1 and Jason-2 missions.

• The Jason-1 and OSTM/Jason-2 missions were launched in 2001 and 2008 respectively.

• These measurements provide scientists with critical information about circulation patterns in the ocean and about both global and regional changes in sea level and the climate implications of a warming world.

• The primary instrument on Jason-3 is a radar altimeter. The altimeter will measure sea-level variations over the global ocean with very high accuracy (as 1.3 inches or 3.3 centimeters, with a goal of achieving 1 inch or 2.5 centimeters).

TAIWAN ELECTED TSAI ING-WEN AS FIRST FEMALE PRESIDENT

Opposition candidate of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Tsai Ing-wen won a landslide victory in Taiwan's presidential election, making her the island's first female president.

Tsai's commanding victory brings to power DPP, which supports Taiwan's formal independence from China, a red line for Beijing, which claims the island as its territory.

Her victory brings the biggest mandate ever won by a DPP president. It is the second-ever victory for the DPP since Taiwan split with China in 1949.

In the 2016 general elections, DPP led by Tsai emerged victorious with 56 percent of the total vote share. She defeated Eric Chu of the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) Party that secured 31 percent vote share. Chu also made the announcement of quitting as KMT head. Taiwan's Premier Mao Chi-kuo also resigned.

About Tsai Ing-wen

Born on 31 August 1956 in Taipei, Taiwan, Tsai graduated from the College of Law, National Taiwan University in 1978. She obtained a Master of Laws at Cornell University Law School in 1980 and then a Ph.D. in law at the London School of Economics in 1984.

Upon her return to Taiwan, she taught law at Soochow University School of Law and National Chengchi University both in Taipei, Taiwan.

She served as consultant for the Mainland Affairs Council and the National Security Council.

She also led the drafting team on the Statute Governing Relations with Hong Kong and Macau.

In 2000, she was given the high-profile appointment of chairperson of the Mainland Affairs Council.

She joined the DPP in 2004.

She was subsequently nominated by the DPP to be a candidate in the 2004 legislative election and was elected as a legislator-at-large.

On 26 January 2006, she was appointed to the post of vice president of the Executive Yuan.

She was elected and assumed DPP chairpersonship in 2008, following her party's defeat in the 2008 presidential election.

She ran for New Taipei City mayorship in the November 2010 municipal elections but was defeated by another former vice premier, Eric Chu (KMT).

In April 2011, she became the first female presidential candidate of a major party in the history of the Republic of China.

She was defeated by incumbent Kuomintang candidate Ma Ying-jeou in the 5th direct presidential election in 2012.

Comment

In 1949, KMT nationalists formed their own government in Taiwan after Mao Zedong's communists took power in Beijing.

Therefore, China sees the island as a breakaway province, which it has threatened to take back by force if necessary.

The KMT Party has ruled Taiwan for almost past 70 years and has overseen improved relations with China in recent times.

Tsai’s landslide victory marks a defeat for not only the pro-unification ruling party KMT but also China.

INDIA'S DINESH SHARMA ELECTED TO BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF AIIB

India’s Dinesh Sharma was elected to the 12-member board of directors of the China-sponsored Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). A secret ballot for the post was held on 16 January 2016.

It is the first Board of Directors of AIIB in which 57 nations are founding members including India.

The inaugural meeting of the board of the governors of the AIIB was held in Beijing after its formal launch. The meeting approved by-laws, rules and codes of conduct for the bank. Union Finance Minister of IndiaArun Jaitley is the designated governor of the AIIB from the country. However, he was represented by Sharma at the meeting. Sharma is currently serving as the Additional Secretary of Ministry of Finance.

AIIB holds authorised capital of 100 billion US dollars and subscribed capital of 50 billion US dollars. It will invest in sectors including energy, transportation, urban construction and logistics as well as education and healthcare.

China is the largest shareholder with 26.06 percent voting shares.India is the second largest shareholder with 7.5 percent followed by Russia with 5.93 percent and Germany with 4.5 percent.

On 16 January 2016, Chinese President Xi Jinping launched AIIB, which is seen as a rival to the US-led World Bank, in Beijing.

Despite opposition from Washington, US allies including Australia, Britain, German, Italy, the Philippines and South Korea have agreed to join the AIIB in recognition of China's growing economic influence.

About Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank is an international financial institution that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region.

The bank was proposed as an initiative by the Government of China, supported by 37 regional and 20 non-regional Prospective Founding Members, all of which have signed the Articles of Agreement that form the legal basis for the proposed bank.

The capital of the bank is 100 billion US dollars, which is equivalent to two-third of the capital of the Asian Development Bank and about half that of the World Bank.

21ST CRITICS' CHOICE AWARDS PRESENTED IN CALIFORNIA

The 21st Critics' Choice Awards were conferred at the Santa Monica Airport's Barker Hangar in California. TJ Miller hosted the presentation program.

These awards honour the finest achievements in drama and television filmmaking which were aired between 1 June 2015 and 31 December 2015.

The Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA) and Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA) have announced the nominees for the 2016 awards were announced on 14 December 2015.

The List of winners of Critics' Choice Awards 2016

DRAMA

BEST PICTURE: Spotlight

BEST ACTOR: Leonardo DiCaprio – The Revenant

BEST ACTRESS: Brie Larson – Room

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: Sylvester Stallone – Creed

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Alicia Vikander – The Danish Girl

BEST YOUNG ACTOR/ACTRESS: Jacob Tremblay – Room

BEST ACTING ENSEMBLE: Spotlight

BEST DIRECTOR: George Miller – Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY: Josh Singer and Tom McCarthy – Spotlight

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: Charles Randolph and Adam McKay – The Big Short

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: The Revenant – Emmanuel Lubezki

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN: Mad Max: Fury Road – Colin Gibson

BEST EDITING: Mad Max: Fury Road – Margaret Sixel

BEST COSTUME DESIGN: Mad Max: Fury Road – Jenny Beavan

BEST HAIR & MAKEUP: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE: Inside Out

BEST ACTION MOVIE: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST ACTOR IN AN ACTION MOVIE: Tom Hardy – Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST ACTRESS IN AN ACTION MOVIE: Charlize Theron – Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST COMEDY: The Big Short

BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY: Christian Bale – The Big Short

BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY: Amy Schumer – Trainwreck

BEST SCI-FI/HORROR MOVIE: Ex Machina

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM: Son of Saul

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE: Amy

BEST SONG: Furious 7 – “See You Again”

BEST SCORE: The Hateful Eight – Ennio Morricone

TELEVISION

BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES: Jeffrey Tambor – Transparent – Amazon

BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES: Rami Malek – Mr. Robot – USA

BEST ACTOR IN A MOVIE MADE FOR TELEVISION OR LIMITED SERIES: Idris Elba – Luther – BBC America

BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES: Rachel Bloom – Crazy Ex-Girlfriend – The CW

BEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES: Carrie Coon – The Leftovers – HBO

BEST ACTRESS IN A MOVIE MADE FOR TELEVISION OR LIMITED SERIES: Kirsten Dunst – Fargo – FX Networks

BEST COMEDY SERIES: Master of None – Netflix

BEST DRAMA SERIES: Mr. Robot – USA

BEST GUEST ACTOR/ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES: Timothy Olyphant – The Grinder – Fox

BEST GUEST ACTOR/ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES: Margo Martindale – The Good Wife – CBS

BEST MOVIE MADE FOR TELEVISION OR LIMITED SERIES: Fargo – FX Networks

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES: Andre Braugher – Brooklyn Nine-Nine – Fox

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES: Christian Slater – Mr. Robot – USA

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MOVIE MADE FOR TELEVISION OR LIMITED SERIES: Jesse Plemons – Fargo – FX Networks

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES: Mayim Bialik – The Big Bang Theory – CBS

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES: Constance Zimmer – UnREAL – Lifetime

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MOVIE MADE FOR TELEVISION OR LIMITED SERIES: Jean Smart – Fargo – FX Networks

BEST ANIMATION SERIES: BoJack Horseman - Netflix

BEST REALITY SHOW - COMPETITION: The Voice - NBC

BEST REALITY SHOW HOST: James Lipton - Inside the Actors Studio - Bravo

BEST STRUCTURED REALITY SHOW: Shark Tank - ABC

BEST TALK SHOW: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver - HBO

BEST UNSTRUCTURED REALITY SHOW: Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown - CNN

PM NARENDRA MODI LAUNCHED START-UP INDIA INITIATIVE

Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched Start-up India initiative to augment startup ecosystem in the country. The initiative was launched in New Delhi.

On this occasion, the Prime Minister also unveiled Start-up India, Stand-up India Action Plan which contained a slew of financial, policy and regulatory measures aimed at giving impetus to innovation and entrepreneurship in the country.

Key features of Start-up India, Stand-up India Action Plan

• A separate fund will be created with 10000 crore rupees corpus for development and growth of innovation driven enterprises. It will be 2500 crore rupees a year for four years.

• The Atal Innovation Mission was announced with a focus on strengthening incubation facilities for startups. Under the mission, among other things, pre-incubation training will be offered to willing entrepreneurs.

• Under the mission, 35 new incubators, 7 new research parks, 31 innovation centres will be set up at the premier technology institutes under the public private partnership mode.

• 500 sector specific incubators, including 5 new Bio clusters will be established across the country.

• An innovation programme will be launched in 5 lakh schoolsacross the country to nurture innovation among 10 lakh children.

• Profits of Start-up units will be made tax-free for 3 years and there will be a moratorium on labour inspections for the first 3 years of operations.

• Capital gains tax to be exempted for venture capital investments.However, the exemption will be applicable only when only when the proceeds are invested in another startup.

• New scheme will be launched to provide Intellectual Property Rights protection to start-ups and new firms.

• Liberalised Fast-track mechanism will be evolved to process startup patent applications under IPR protection with 80 percent reduction in registration fee.

Self-certification based compliance regime will be followed in relation to labour and environmental laws.

• A new mobile app to enable start-ups to register themselves within a day and a portal to apply for clearances online will be operation from 1 April 2016.

• Easier exits for failed ventures with a provision for winding them up within 90 days under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Bill, 2015.

DELHI ACERS DEFEATED MUMBAI ROCKETS TO CLINCH PREMIER BADMINTON LEAGUE TITLE

Delhi Acers emerged victorious over Mumbai Rockets by 4-3 in the summit clash to clinch the Premier Badminton League (PBL) title. The match was held at the Siri Fort Sports Complex in New Delhi.

Tommy Sugiarto, men's doubles pair of Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong, and Rajiv Ouseph won their respective matches as Delhi grabbed the trophy and a winner's cheque of 3 crores rupees.

About Premier Badminton League

Premier Badminton League is a franchise league, managed and commercially owned by the Badminton Association of India.

PBL was earlier named Indian Badminton League (IBL) when it was founded in 2013.

IBL was later rechristened to Premier Badminton League before the start of 2nd Season in 2016.

The objective of the tournament is to bring top Indian players along with International players on the same platform.

Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar is the brand ambassador of the league.

RONNIE O'SULLIVAN DEFEATED BARRY HAWKINS TO WIN SIXTH SNOOKER MASTERS TITLE

Ronnie O'Sullivan won his sixth Snooker Masters title after defeating Barry Hawkins 10-1 in the final at the Alexandra Palace in London.

O'Sullivan had previously won the event in 1995, 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2014, equalling the record set by Stephen Hendry.

About Ronnie O'Sullivan

Ronald Antonio O'Sullivan is an English professional snooker player.

He is one of the most successful players in the sport's modern era.

He is regarded by many commentators as the most naturally gifted player in snooker history, and is frequently described as a genius.

He is also noted for his mercurial temperament and for his ambivalent relationship with the sport, from which he has repeatedly threatened to retire.

He made his first century break at the age of 10.

His first maximum break came at age 15.

He turned professional in 1992 and soon earned the nickname The Rocket because of his rapid playing style.

He achieved his first major professional success when he won the 1993 UK Championship at the age of 17 years and 358 days, making him the youngest player ever to win a ranking title.

He is also the youngest player to have won the Masters.

He holds the record for the most competitive century breaks, with 807.

He also holds the record for the most ratified maximum breaks in professional competition and for the three fastest competitive maximum breaks, the quickest in 5 minutes and 20 seconds.

About Snooker Masters

The Masters is a professional invitational snooker tournament.

The tournament is held every year since 1975.

It is the second longest running tournament behind the World Championship.

It is one of the Triple Crown events. It is regarded as one of the most prestigious tournaments on the circuit.

Ronnie O'Sullivan and Stephen Hendry hold the record for the most Masters titles, each having won the tournament six times.

MODI AND HOLLANDE BOTH AGREE TO FIGHT TERROR

  • India and France are set for a new partnership in counter-terror cooperation, the visiting French President, Francois Hollande, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi indicated.
  • In separate speeches at the CEO forum in Chandigarh, they under- scored the need for the two countries to work together on fighting terror and enhancing their strategic partnership.
  • Mr. Hollande said his first goal of visiting India was to “consolidate the strategic partnership”.
  • Both leaders will hold bilateral talks, during which they are likely to discuss upgrading the “special and strategic partnership” signed in 1998.
  • For the past few months, officials have been discussing a closer engagement on counter-terrorism cooperation on the lines of the India-U.S. homeland security dialogue.

AMIT SHAH BECAME BJP PRESIDENT FOR THE SECOND TIME

  • Amit Shah was elected unopposed president of the Bharatiya Janata Party for a second term, this time for a full tenure of three years.
  • Mr. Shah had earlier completed Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s interrupt- ed tenure as president from July 2014.
  • While party veterans L.K. Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi were absent from the election process and the ensuing festivities, it was more than made up for by the presence of other leaders, including the Chief Ministers of most BJP-ruled States, senior Ministers and party office-bearers.
  • Mr. Shah is considered close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and it is believed that despite the defeats in the Delhi and the Bihar Assembly elections, Mr. Modi continues to favour him.

CABINET RECOMMENDS PRESIDENT RULE IN ARUNANCHAL PRADESH

  • The Union Cabinet on Sunday recommended imposition of President’s rule on the Congress-ruled Arunachal Pradesh after it felt the State was heading for a “constitutional break- down.”
  • The Congress said it would challenge the decision in court if it got the President’s assent.
  • An emergency meeting of the Cabinet was convened here in the morning to discuss the situation. Prime Minister Narendra Modi was in the chair.
  • It was decided to recommend to the President to issue a proclamation under Article 356(1) of the Constitution.
  • Taking cognisance of the situation in the State, based on Governor Jyoti Prashad Rajkhowa’s report, the government felt the State is “heading for a constitutional crisis” and it warranted the Centre’s intervention.
  • The Centre based its decision on Article 174 of the Constitution, according to which six months shall not intervene between the last sitting of the Assembly in one session and the date appointed for its first sitting in the next session.
  • According to one interpretation, the next session should therefore have taken place at the latest by January 21, 2016.
  • The other interpretation is that a session was indeed held on December 16 albeit outside the Assembly building (where a majority of the members had voted) as access to the building was denied.
  • Notably, the session which took place on December 16, 2015 has been disputed by Chief Minister Nabam Tuki and his supporters. Whether this session is valid or not is under litigation in the Supreme Court.

DINOSAUR BONES FOUND IN KUTCH

  • A team of Indo-German geologists and palaeontologists may have found fossils of a 135-million-year old herbivorous dinosaur in Kutch, Gujarat, possibly the oldest such fossil found this century.
  • The pieces of bone — possibly from the limb or hip and about two feet long —suggests that it may have been a 10-15 metre-long animal and, were the researchers’ claims to hold up, only among a handful of Jurassic-era dinosaur fossils from India.
  • That was the time when India and Madagascar were one land- mass and the Himalayas yet to form.
  • The so-called Jurassic era spanned 250-145 million years during which herbivorous dinosaurs flourished and laid the ground for beasts, such as the Tyrannosaurus Rex.
  • These flourished during the Cretaceous period —145 to 65 million years ago — after which the double blows of a meteor strike and overflow- ing volcanoes are said to have destroyed these animals.
  • Though it is well known that the Indian landmass may be storing a plethora of fossil life, it hasn’t been plumbed enough — say researchers — for dinosaurs or other ancient life.
  • The Kutch Basin, it is believed, was inundated by sea- water during the Jurassic period and these repeated over millennia to throw up an extremely varied bio-geography.

GREEK ISLANDERS WILL BE NOMINATED FOR NOBEL PEACE PRIZE

  • Greek islanders who have been on the frontline of the refugee crisis are to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize with the support of their national government.
  • Of the 9,00,000 refugees who entered Europe last year, most were received — scared, soaked and travelling in rickety boats — by those who live on the Greek islands in the Aegean Sea.
  • The islanders, including fishermen who gave up their work to rescue people from the sea, are in line to be honoured with one of the world’s most esteemed awards.
  • The nomination deadline is February 1, but those behind the plan have already met the Greek Minister for Migration, Yiannis Mouzalas, who they say has offered his government’s full support.
  • A petition on the web- site of the grassroots campaign group, Avaaz, in favour of the nomination has amassed 2,80,000 signatures.
  • While the official nomination letter is yet to be finalised, it is understood the academics, whose identities will be revealed in the coming days, will implore the Nobel committee members to accept their nomination.

MADHESIS DO NOT ACCEPT THE NEW AMENDED CONSTITUTION

  • Nepal’s agitating Madhesis rejected the constitutional amendments passed by the Parliament as “incomplete” for failing to address concerns over redrawing of borders.
  • This has dimmed hopes of an early end to the political imbroglio and blockade of trade points with India.
  • India welcomed the first round of amendments of the Nepal Constitution, which is expected to create a more inclusive society in Nepal.
  • The amendments, supported by 461 of the 601 members of Parliament, covered Article 42 to ensure more inclusive social justice, Article 84 to create a House of Representatives, and Article 286 to create a new process of constituency delimitation, helping the Madhesi groups.
  • Rameshwar Raya Yadav, senior Madhesi leader listed the positive provisions in the amendment as those dealing with proportionate representation, inclusiveness, and allocation of Parliament seats on the basis of population.
  • He said it would have been better if the agitating parties were taken into confidence before endorsing the two amendment bills.
  • The amendments were endorsed by a two-third majority. The Madhesis in Nepal are largely of Indian origin.
  • The lawmakers of the agitating parties had boycotted the voting, saying the amendments were “incomplete”, as they fell short of addressing their concerns, including redrawing federal boundaries.

US PRESIDENT OBAMA SAYS PAKISTAN CAN AND MUST TAKE ACTION AGAINST TERRORISM

  • Voicing his belief that the India-U.S. relationship can be one of the defining partner- ships of the century, he said Mr. Modi shared his enthusiasm for a strong partnership and “we have developed a friendship and close working relationship, including our conversations on the new secure lines between our offices.”
  • On the Pathankot attack, he said: “We join India in condemning the attack, saluting the Indians who fought to pre- vent more loss of life and extending our condolences to the victims and their families.
  • Tragedies like this also under- score why the U.S. and India continue to be such close partners in fighting terrorism.”
  • The President was of the view that Mr. Sharif recognised that insecurity in Pakistan is a threat to its own stability and that of the region.
  • After the December, 2014 school massacre in Peshawar, he vowed to target all militants, regardless of their agenda or affiliation.
  • That is the right policy. Since then, we have seen Pakistan take action against several specific groups. We have also seen continued terrorism inside Pakistan such as the recent attack on the university in northwest Pakistan.
  • The President said that he still believed that “Pakistan can and must” take more effective action against terrorist groups that operated from its territory.

SUSHMA SWARAJ PITCHES TO CHECK TERRORISTS FUNDING SOURCE

  • India and the Arab League on Sunday vowed to combat terrorism and called for developing a strategy to “eliminate” its sources and its funding as External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj made a strong pitch for delinking religion from terrorism.
  • While addressing the 1st Ministerial Meeting of Arab- India Cooperation Forum here in the Bahraini capital, Ms. Swaraj also warned that those who “silently sponsor” terror groups could end up being used by them, in an apparent jibe at Pakistan.
  • The meeting, which was opened by Bahrain’s Foreign Minister Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, culminated with the two sides issuing a joint statement called the Manama Declaration.
  • The two sides discussed regional and global issues of mutual concern, including the Palestinian issue, developments in the Arab region and in South Asia, as well as counter-terrorism, Security Council reforms and nuclear disarmament.
  • They also emphasised the need for concerted regional and international efforts to combat terrorism and to address its causes and develop a strategy to eliminate the sources of terrorism and extremism, including its funding, as well as combating organised cross-border crime, the Declaration stated.
  • In this context, the two sides affirmed their respect to the independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Iraq and non-interference in its internal affairs and rejecting infringement of such principles, strongly condemned crimes committed by all terror organisations.

GOVERNMENT MAKING CHANGES IN SCHEME TO MAKE IT MORE ATTRACTIVE

  • The government has made a slew of changes in its gold monetisation scheme to make it more flexible and attractive.
  • Since the scheme was introduced two months ago the government has collected over 900 kilos of gold.
  • The new norms issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in consultation with the government are based on suggestions to make the scheme more accessible for potential gold depositors, and allow premature redemptions after three years and five years for medium term and long term deposits, respectively.
  • The interest payable to depositors in such cases would be reduced, while allowing them an exit option.
  • Further, the quantity of gold collected under the scheme will be expressed up to three decimals of a gram to give consumers better value for their gold deposits that can be of any purity level.
  • The gold monetisation scheme was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The gold collected under the scheme is refined for domestic purpose with an eye on cutting India’s high gold imports, which registered a surge of 179 per cent in the month of December 2015.
  • Gold depositors can now give their gold directly to the refiner rather than only though collection and purity testing centres (CPTCs).
  • Adding that this would encourage bulk depositors including institutions to participate in the scheme.
  • Banks would now be paid a 2.5 per cent commission for their services on medium and long term deposits which include testing the purity of gold deposits, refining, storage and transportation.
  • Banks have also been given the freedom to hedge their positions in the case of short-term deposits, and issues around interest rate calculation as well as extending loans against gold deposits have been clarified.

INDIAN SHUTTLER P.V.SINDHU WON MALAYSIA MASTERS

  • Indian shuttler P.V. Sindhu continued her rampaging run to clinch the Malaysia Masters Grand Prix Gold title with a straight-game win over Scotland’s Kristy Gilmour, making a resounding start to the new season.
  • The third-seeded Indian prevailed 21-15, 21-9 in a 32-minute clash to clinch her fifth Grand Prix Gold title to avenge a 2013 loss to the Scot, their only previous encounter before this match.
  • This is also Sindhu’s second Malaysia Masters Grand Prix Gold title, having won it in 2013 as well. She also completed a hat-trick at the Macau Open Grand Prix Gold in November last year.
  • The Indian had reached her maiden finals of a Super Series premier event at the Denmark Super Series Premier.

INDIA WON T20 BLIND CRICKET ASIA CUP

  • World champion India held its nerve impressively on Sunday, defeated Pakistan by 45 runs and lifted the first T20 Asia Cup for the Blind at the Nehru Stadium.
  • Despite its big star Prakash Jayaramaiah — considered one of the world’s best batsmen in this version — falling for a duck and the consistent Ketan Patel not scoring big.
  • India still managed to make 206, thanks to some late fireworks from cap- tain Ajay Kumar Reddy who made an unbeaten 34 from 16 balls (1x6, 1x4).

 

 

When life gets hectic and you feel overwhelmed, take a moment to focus on the people and things you are most grateful for. When you have an attitude of gratitude, frustrating troubles will fall by the wayside. Sometimes we must undergo hardships, breakups, and narcissistic wounds, which shatter the flattering image that we had of ourselves, in order to discover two truths: that we are not who we thought we were; and that the loss of a cherished pleasure is not necessarily the loss of true happiness and well-being.
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Last Updated on Thursday, 28 January 2016 04:01