Current Affairs India - 30 June 2013

1. Supreme Court Judge P Sathasivam will be the next Chief Justice of India (CJI). President Pranab Mukherjee has given his nod for the appointment of Mr. Sathasivam as the new Chief Justice after the superannuation of present CJI, Altamas Kabir's tenure which ends on the 18th July this year. 64-year-old Sathasivam had joined as a permanent Judge of the Madras High Court in January, 1996 after which he was transferred to the Punjab and Haryana High Court in April, 2007. He was appointed as a Supreme Court Judge in August, 2007.

2. Bimal Julka (IAS MP:1979), presently serving as Special Secretary and Financial Adviser, Ministry of External Affairs has been appointed as the new Secretary, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. He will replace Uday Kumar Varma.

3. Alok Rawat (IAS WB:1979), presently serving as Secretary, (PG & Coordination) Cabinet Secretariat, has been appointed as new Secretary, Ministry of  Water Resources. He will succeed Syamal Kumar Sarkar.

4. Sujata Singh (IFS 1976), India's ambassador to Germany, has been appointed as the new Foreign Secretary. She is the senior most officer in the Indian Foreign Service and will succeed Rajan Mathai.

5. The Cabinet has approved the setting up of a regulatory authority for coal sector. It also approved the introduction of Coal Regulatory Authority Bill, 2013, in Parliament. The decision aims to regulate and conserve coal resources and protecting the interest of all stakeholders.

6. The Rajasthan government has launched a unique scheme called Mukhyamantri Bijli Bachat Lamp Yojna for energy conservation. The State government will provide 2 CFL bulbs free of cost to all electricity consumers of villages and BPL consumers in urban areas. This scheme will continue till August 2013. The purpose of this scheme is to save energy and conservation of environment. With the use of these one crore six lakh CFLs 93 crore rupees electricity will be saved and consumers will save 278 crore rupees per year in the state in which 53 lakh families will be benefited with this scheme.

7. According to TripAdvisor's 2013 Travellers Choice Attractions Awards, Travellers from across the globe have ranked India-s Taj Mahal, listed among the new seven wonders of the world, among the top three landmarks in the world. The top two places were taken by Machu Picchu in Peru and Angkor Wat in Cambodia respectively. "The winners of Travelers' Choice Attractions awards were determined based on the quality and quantity of traveler reviews of attractions.

8. Seventh Statistics Day is observed yesterday (29th June) across the country. This day calls for strengthening our resolve to revamp the statistical system. The theme chosen for the 7th Statistics Day, -Labour & Employment Statistics- is extremely relevant in the context of our State where unemployment is a social issue of serious concern. Every year this day is observed to mark the birth anniversary of Professor Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis in recognition of his contribution to the field of Economic Planning and Statistic.

9. Indian Railways has launched SMS-based ticketing with two dedicated numbers - 139 and 5676714 - for the service. This new service will provide improved customer service and empower the common man to book tickets using SMS only who does not have access to internet and cannot afford to buy smart phones.

10. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has proposed a separate wealth management unit for banks involved in wealth & portfolio management services. In its annual monetary policy statement, the RBI suggested the banks to carry out all Wealth Management Services (WMS) activities through a separate subsidiary or via a Separately Identifiable Department or Division established for the purpose. RBI took this decision to address the issue of conflict of interest arising from the single entity conducting both the activities of advisory, fund management as well as marketing.

11. Indian American Cardiac Surgeon and Healthcare Economist Dr Mukesh Hariawala has been conferred with the prestigious Indian Healthcare Visionary of the Decade award at a ceremony of the 4th Annual Business Leadership Conclave held at Hotel Leela in Mumbai. Dr Hariawala delivered a spirited keynote lecture to a packed audience where he convincingly laid out a 100 Billion Dollar Medical Tourism opportunity for India as a byproduct of US President Barack Obama's new Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act which unofficially is also termed -Obamacare-. This new law signed in 2010 would change the ecosystem in the US, moving gradually from the existing capitalistic high quality healthcare with no Waiting Periods to a socialized government controlled form of healthcare as prevalent in the UK and Canada.

12. In a reprieve to the suspended Indian Olympic Association, the IOC has decided to extend the deadline for adopting an amended constitution. The draft is currently being reviewed by the world body. Now this initial deadline of 15th July will have to be slightly extended until the IOC can compile and send all necessary comments for the new IOA Constitution.

13. ICC has announced today that India will host the World T20 in 2016 and the 50-over World Cup in 2023. India will also host the second edition of World Test Championship in February-March 2021.