Current Affairs India - 29 October 2014

1. India has been ranked at 142nd position in the list of 189 countries in the latest World Bank's "Ease of Doing Business" report published today. India-s rank dropped by two places from the ranking published last year. India secured 53.97 points this year compared to 52.78 points last year which confirms significant improvement in last one year.

Singapore secured No 1 position with 88.27 points in terms of ease of doing business followed by New Zealand, Hong Kong, Denmark and South Korea.  The USA and UK has been ranked at No 7th and 8th position respectively while China was ranked at 90th position in the same list.

2. India has been ranked at 7th place for minority investor protection, as per a sub-ranking released by the World Bank as part of its annual Ease of Doing Business report today. This ranking is much better than some developed countries like United States, Japan, France and Germany.

The report added that India improved minority investor protections by requiring greater disclosure of conflicts of interest by board members, increasing the remedies available in case of prejudicial related party transactions and introducing additional safeguards for shareholders of privately held companies.

3. The Central Government has submitted a list of names of 627 Indian account holders in HSBC Bank, Geneva, in black money case to the Supreme Court. The list was handed over to SIT team probing the black money case. The apex court has also asked the Special Investigation Team to go through the list and take appropriate action in accordance with the law.

A Bench headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu did not open the sealed envelope and said that it would be opened only by the Chairman and the Vice-Chairman of the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT). It has asked SIT to submit the status report of its probe by November-end.

4. Senior journalist A Surya Prakash has been appointed Chairman of the Prasar Bharati Board for next 3 years. He will succeed another veteran journalist Mrinal Pande who completed his tenure on 30th April this year. The post has been lying vacant for the last six months.

The appointment was made on the recommendation of a three-member committee headed by Vice President M Hamid Ansari and comprising Press Council of India Chairman Markandey Katju and I&B Secretary Bimal Julka.

5. Prasar Bharati CEO Jawhar Sircar has been elected as the vice-president of Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) in Macau yesterday. Representatives from Malaysian broadcaster RTM and Japan's NHK were also chosen as vice-presidents while the representative from South Korean broadcaster KBS was chosen president.

ABU is a non-profit, non-government professional association of broadcasters. ABU has 264 members in 61 countries and it reaches to a potential audience of 3.5 billion people. India is a founder member since 1964 and All India Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan have been associated with it.

6. Indian PSU firm Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) overtook Reliance Industries to become the highest ranked Indian energy firm as per the Platts Global 250 Rankings for this year. ONGC now ranked at 22nd position globally compared to 23rd position last year. RIL, India-s largest private firm, secured 22nd rank while Indian Oil Corp and Coal India secured 43rd and 47th rank respectively.

The list is led by Oil giants Exxon Mobil Corp, Chevron and Royal Dutch Shell.

7. Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar and former Australian captain Steve Waugh were inducted as one of the latest honorees in the Bradman Foundation at a gala dinner held at the historic Sydney Cricket Ground.

Tendulkar, who met Bradman on his 90th birthday at his Adelaide home, was later listed in an all-time XI prepared by the batting genius himself.