July 2013 Current Affairs List

 


1 July


Current Affairs Global - 1 July 2013


1. Croatia joined the European Union yesterday midnight as the 28th member of the Union. Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic focused on Croatia-s -new role- in the region and toward countries with which it has been in conflict - Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia. It had applied for EU membership in 2003. Croatia is the first new EU member since Bulgaria and Romania joined in 2007.


2. Euro zone unemployment rate stood at 12.1% in May compared to revised 12.0% in the previous month of April. Another 67,000 joins the unemployed list to bring the total unemployed to 19.2 million, as per the European Union-s statistics agency Eurostat. Greece and Spain continued to post the worst unemployment figures, while Austria and Germany retained the lowest rates.


3. A young and inexperienced Brazilian side crushed world and European champions Spain by 3-0 win in the Confederations Cup final on Sunday. Brazil team was led by 21-year-old striker Neymar who proved his capability and excellence one year before the world cup. From Brazilian side, two goals were scored by Fred and one was scored by Neymar. This is the fourth Confederations Cup win for Brazil after 2005 in South Africa, 2009 in Germany and 1997 in Saudi Arabia.


4. Post the final match of Confederations Cup, Fernando José Torres of Spain was awarded with the Golden Boot Award, while Fred of Brazil won the Silver Boot Award. The Bronze Boot Award was given away to Neymar. In another match Italy defeated Uruguay on penalties and secured the third place.


5. Germany's Nico Rosberg won a dramatic British Grand Prix for Mercedes yesterday. It was the Mercedes team's first victory in Britain since Stirling Moss won in 1955 and Rosberg's second in three races and third of his career. Red Bull-s Fernando Alonso, Ferrari-s Fernando Alonso, Marcedes- Lewis Hamilton and Lotus-s Kimi Raikkonen stood second, third, fourth and fifth respectively in the same race.


Current Affairs India - 1 July 2013


1. The Delhi Metro has taken over the operations of Airport Express link in Delhi from Sunday midnight as Reliance Infra refused to run the Metro line. Earlier, Reliance Infra owned Delhi Airport Metro Express Private Limited (DAMEPL) had written a letter to DMRC last week expressing its inability to continue operations of the Airport Express link.


2. Suresh Kalmadi lost Presidential re-election of the Asian Athletics Association to his competitor Qatar-s Dahlan Jumaan Al-Hamad by 18-20 on the opening day of the continental body-s two-day Congress in Pune. He is currently out on bail after spending 10 months in jail for his alleged involvement in the Commonwealth Games scam. The new President, Al Hamad is the Qatar Athletics Federation President and is also senior vice-president of the Asian body.


3. In order to strengthen its safeguards against money laundering, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has issued the master circular revising certain guidelines related to bank Know Your Customer (KYC) policy today. It suggests creating Unique Customers Identification Code (UCIC) while bringing changes in new account opening process. As per RBI master circular on KYC/Anti Money Laundering (ALM), "The increasing complexity and volume of financial transactions necessitate that customers do not have multiple identities within a bank, across the banking system and across the financial system. This can be achieved by introducing a unique identification code for each customer".


4. INS Trikand, built in Russia, was commissioned into the Indian Navy at Kaliningrad, Russia by Vice Admiral R K Dhowan, the Vice Chief of the Naval Staff, Indian Navy. INS Trikand carries a state-of-the-art combat suite, which includes the supersonic 290-km BrahMos missile system, Shtil advanced surface-to-air missiles, an upgraded A-190 medium range gun, an electro-optical 30-mm close-in weapon system, anti-submarine weapons such as torpedoes and rockets and an advanced electronic warfare system. INS Trikand is the last of the six stealth frigates ordered from Russia. The Navy had earlier inducted three 4,000-tonne Talwar-class stealth frigates (Talwar, Trishul and Tabar) from Russia in 2003-2004.


India-s core industries growth slows to 2.3% in May


Growth in eight infrastructure industries comprising of  coal, crude oil, natural gas, petroleum refinery products, fertilisers, steel, cement and electricity slowed to 2.3% in May compared to 7.2% growth in the same month last year mainly due to contraction in crude oil, natural gas, coal and fertiliser output. All these eight core industries have more than 37% weight in the IIP and this dismal growth will definitely affect the IIP data for May.


Production of coal, crude oil, natural gas and fertiliser were contracted by 3.3%, 2.4%, 1.87% and 2% respectively in May which pulled down the overall core sector growth number. Petroleum refinery, steel, cement and electricity production grew by 5%, 4.1%, 3% and 6.2% respectively in May compared to 23.4%, 3.8%, 15.4% and 5.9% in the same month last year.


Nokia to acquire Siemens' stake in Nokia Siemens Network joint venture for USD 2.2 billion


Nokia has agreed to acquire Siemens' 50% stake in their joint venture, Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN), for 1.7 billion euros (USD 2.2 billion). The deal comes at a time when NSN has started to show profits after a series of cost cutting measures. NSN, which makes telecom network equipment, will help Nokia to grow in areas such as broadband technology when its key mobile business is struggling.


The joint venture was launched between these two telecom giants in 2007. The entity struggled to make profits in the early years due to slowdown in demand post the 2008 global financial crisis.


 


Hero MotoCorp acquires 49.2% stake in EBR for USD 25 million


India-s largest two wheeler company, Her MotoCorp, has acquired 49.2% stake in US-based high-end motorcycle maker Erik Buell Racing (EBR) for USD 25 million. This is its overseas acquisition after parting ways with Honda and this is also its first financial investment to establish the Hero brand as a global brand.


To complete the acquisition, HMC has incorporated a wholly-owned subsidiary in the US by the name of HMCL (NA). HMC has paid the first tranche of $USD 5 million to EBR already and the balance USD 10 million will be paid within nine months in a single tranche. Post this acquisition, Hero MotoCorp will work closely with EBR for selling and marketing of both the brands in domestic as well as international markets.


 


2 July


Current Affairs Global - 2 July 2013


1. Global Innovation Index 2013 report was published by Cornell University, INSEAD, World Intellectual Property Organisation and the Confederation of Indian Industry. This is the first in the Central and South Asia region in the innovation efficiency ratio (which reflects the innovation output per unit of input in the economy). In the global rankings, Switzerland and Sweden topped in innovation, followed by the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and the United States. Among regions, innovation was seen improving the most in Latin America.


2. Global professional services firm Ernst & Young has appointed EY Mark Weinberger, who previously served as the Global and Americas Head of Tax, as its new Global Chairman and CEO. At the same time the firm has simplified its name and redesigned its logo.


 


Current Affairs India - 2 July 2013


1. ISRO has launched India's first navigation satellite yesterday night. The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV C22) was launched at 11.41pm from Satish Dawan Space Centre in Sriharikota. After a flight of 20 minutes 17 seconds, the IRNSS-1A Satellite, weighing 1425 kg, was injected to the intended elliptical orbit of 282.46 km X 20,625.37 km at 00:01 hours. The satellite was launched into the satellite was placed satellite in its Geosynchronous Circular Orbit at 55 deg East longitude. This was the first launch operation conducted by ISRO in night. By launching seven satellites in the constellation of IRNSS, India can reduce its dependency on other countries such as the US and Russia for GPS based services.


2. The Union Government of India has launched the National Cyber Security Policy 2013 at New Delhi in order to protect information and build capabilities to prevent cyber-attacks. The National Cyber Security Policy 2013 to safeguard both physical and business assets of the country. The Policy has outlined the roadmap for creation of a framework for comprehensive, collaborative and collective responsibility to deal with cyber security of the country.



Communications and IT Minister Kapil Sibal said, the new policy will prevent cyber-attacks and crimes and reduce national vulnerability to such attacks. The policy has ambitious plans for rapid social transformation and inclusive growth and India's prominent role in the IT global market. It will cater to the cyber security requirements of government and non-government entities at the national and international levels.


The policy will help in safeguarding the critical infrastructure like Air Defence system, nuclear plants, banking system, power infrastructure, telecommunication system and many more to secure country's economic stability.


3. Sujata Singh, currently envoy to Germany, has been appointed as India-s next Foreign Secretary and her appointment has been already approved by Prime Minister PM Manmohan Singh. With her appointment, she will be the third woman to head the services after Chokila Iyer and Nirupama Rao.


4. Former Delhi Police commissioner K K Paul has been appointed as new governor of Meghalaya. He will replace Ranjit Shekhar Mooshahary. He is from 1970 IPS Officer batch and was also Member of Union Public Service Commission from 26th July 2007.


5. Sunil Soni, a 1981 batch IAS officer of Maharashtra cadre, has been appointed as Director General of Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS). Soni is at present on compulsory wait in the Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance. He replaced Sharad Gupta, a 1977 batch IAS officer of Assam cadre who retired recently.


BIS, a body under the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, is into formulation of standards for all segments of industry and business. It also certifies products, popularly known as ISI mark, certification of imported products and hallmarking of jewellery.


6. Railway Board Member (Mechanical) Arunendra Kumar on Monday assumed additional charge as the Chairman of the apex body, which has been mired in controversy over bribery allegations.


7. Mahindra Two Wheelers today launched its new motorcycle 'Centuro' in the highly competitive 100-110 cc segment. The bike was developed indigenously and priced at Rs 45,000 (ex-showroom, New Delhi).


8. India has been ranked 66th among 142 countries in the Global Innovation Index 2013, and first in the Central and South Asia region in the innovation efficiency ratio (which reflects the innovation output per unit of input in the economy). The report, published by Cornell University, INSEAD, World Intellectual Property Organisation and the Confederation of Indian Industry, studied the emergence of local innovation eco-systems.


Overall, India-s performance was mixed. While the country was strong in gross capital formation (as a percentage of GDP) at rank 9, investment in new business (20), industrial cluster development (29), it ranked poor in áreas such as political stability (123), ease of starting business (128), school life expectancy (109), pupil-teacher ratio (108) etc.


 


3 July


Current Affairs Global - 3 July 2013


1. Britain's Mark Cavendish won fifth stage of the Tour de France in Marseille today as Australian Simon Gerrans retained the race leader's yellow jersey. Cavendish, of the Omega-Pharma team, finished over a bike length ahead of Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) and Slovakian Peter Sagan (Cannondale) in a reduced bunch sprint after they had avoided a crash inside the final kilometre.


Current Affairs India - 3 July 2013


1. The Indian Government has decided to come out with an ordinance to give nation's two-third population the right to 5kg of foodgrain every month at highly subsidized rates of Rs 1-3 per kg today. The Cabinet has also approved promulgation of an ordinance to implement the Food Security Bill, sources said.


The ordinance, which will guarantee 5kg of rice, wheat and coarse cereals per month per person at a fixed price of Rs 3, 2, 1, respectively, will come into effect after President Pranab Mukherjee signs it. With this, India will join select league of countries in the world that guarantee majority of its population foodgrain. At Rs 125,000 crore of government support, the food security programme will be the largest in the world.


2. Himachal Pradesh was declared as the first Smoke-free state of the country yesterday. The declaration was made in compliance to Section 4 of the Cigarettes and other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) 2003.  Himachal Pradesh achieved 85.42 percent compliance with the relevant parameters to be declared as the smoke-free state.


3. Inter-ministerial body Telecom Commission has approved to raise foreign direct investment limit in the telecom sector from current 74% to 100%. This will be placed in the Cabinet for final approval.


Currently, FDI limit in telecom sector is at 74% where 49% is done through automatic route and rest requiring nod from Foreign Investment Promotion Board. This will help to attract more FDI in the telecom sector which is struggling with higher spectrum cost and very low subscriber growth.


4. Leo Puri has been appointed as Managing Director of UTI Mutual Fund today. The appointment has been approved by the shareholders as well. Puri, in his career spanning over 30 years, has worked as Director and Senior Adviser with McKinsey & Company and also as Managing Director with private equity firm Warburg Pincus.


5. India's young Grand Master Parimarjan Negi has won the Continental Chess Association Open title in Washington. Top seed Negi came through a stiff competition in which six Grand Masters took part. The Delhi youngster remained unbeaten, finishing with 7.5 points in the nine rounds of tournament here Monday, according to information received here.


Yahoo acquires moviemaking app Qwiki


Yahoo has acquired Qwiki, the start-up which launched an iPhone application that allows users to turn photos, music and videos into short movies automatically. This acquisition came shortly after it has acquired blogging service Tumblr and Bignoggins Productions which specialises in fantasy sports apps for iPhones. Yahoo has been acquiring different app companies to get back more internet users from Google and Facebook.


Post the acquisition, Yahoo will continue to support the Qwiki app, and the team will join Yahoo! in its New York City office.


 


4 July


Current Affairs Global - 4 July 2013


1. The Egyptian army late ousted President Mohamed Morsi yesterday night and suspended the country-s Islamist constitution and called early elections. The military also announced the setting up of a national reconciliation committee that would include youth movements. Egypts army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi was declared the Supreme Constitutional Courts caretaker leader.


Justice Adly Mahmoud Mansour, head of Egypt-s Constitutional Court, was sworn in as interim leader shortly following the army removed President Mohammed Morsi and put him under house arrest.


2. Douglas C. Engelbart, one of the inventors of the computer mouse and a computer visionary, has died at the age of 88 on Tuesday evening at his home in Atherton, Calif. Engelbart worked on some of the first graphic user interface computers and the idea of the computer mouse. In 1970 he received a patent for the mouse, which was at the time a thick wooden device with two wheels and three buttons.


3. Manchester United has announced today that long-serving midfielder Ryan Giggs is to take on a player-coach role with the English Premier League champions next season. Giggs, who signed a one-year contract extension last season, has been studying for his coaching badges and the 39-year-old is due to acquire the top-level UEFA Pro Licence next year.


4. The European Central Bank (ECB) left interest rates on hold at an historic low of 0.5% today even if the entire euro zone is struggling. The ECB expects a contraction of 0.6% this year and growth of only 1.1% in 2014. The move came after the US Federal Reserve signalled last month plans to begin scaling back its stimulus measures if the world-s biggest economy continued to show signs of gaining momentum.


Current Affairs India - 4 July 2013


1. Two-time Lok Sabha MP from Karad and retired bureaucrat Shriniwas Patil has been appointed as the Sikkim governor. He will succeed current governor B P Singh.


2. Vandana Gandhi, Founder & CEO of British Orchard Nursery, has been awarded with the prestigious Emirates Woman Award for business excellence. With this she has become the first Indian woman to receive this award. She was awarded Emirates Woman Award in the Business Category for excelling and providing innovation in preschool education.


 


5 July


Current Affairs Global - 5 July 2013


1. Marissa Mayer-led Yahoo has acquired email and address book management app Xobni, which is its third acquisition in recent days as it tries to revamp its online products and competes with internet giants Google and Facebook. Post-acquisition, Yahoo will integrate Xobnis technology into its communications products including the mobile and PC versions of its email and instant messaging services.


2. The US economy added a net 195,000 new jobs in June which is much higher than market expectation. The unemployment rate held steady at 7.6% in June, as per the data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The dollar jumped on the news and euro fell to $1.283. This proves that US job market and economy is improving at faster speed and Fed may announce withdrawing its stimulus policies and increase rates from record low.


3. Pakistan's spinner Danish Kaneria has been banned for life by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for indulging in spot-fixing during the 2009 English county season. The board said Kaneria would be suspended for life from any involvement in the playing, organisation or administration of cricket in any form or manner under the jurisdiction of PCB.


 


Current Affairs India - 5 July 2013


1. President Pranab Mukherjee signed the ordinance on food security today to give nation's two-third population the right to get 5kg of foodgrains every month at highly subsidised rates of Rs 1-3 per kg. The food security programme will be the biggest in the world with the government spending estimated at Rs 125,000 crore annually on supply of about 62 million tonnes of rice, wheat and coarse cereals to 67 per cent of the population.


2. The Supreme Court has directed the Election Commission to frame guidelines for regulating contents of manifestos. The Supreme Court also said freebies promised by political parties disturb the level playing field among players contesting the polls and vitiates the election process. The judgment can have huge implications and can put a curb on political parties promising different types of freebies like laptops, TVs, grinders and mixers, electric fans, four gram gold thali and free foodgrains if voted to power.


3. Padmashri Mahasundari Devi, the doyenne of Mithila painting, passed away at her native village, Ranti, near Madhubani on Thursday morning. She was 92. She was renowned for her mastery over Sikki work, 'sujani' craft, clay work and paper mache apart from Mithila painting. Apart from over two dozen national and state awards to her credit, the two prestigious awards __ she won Padmashri and Shilp Guru in 2010.


4. Virat Kohli has been named as Indian Cricket team captain for the upcoming One-day series in Zimbabwe later this month as Dhoni has been rested due to his injury. Dhoni has already been ruled out of current Tri-Series for the same reason. Apart from Dhoni, pacemen Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav and spinner Ravichandran Aswhin were also rested.


Young all-rounder Parveez Rasool has created history today by becoming the first cricketer from Jammu and Kashmir to be named in the Indian team as the selectors announced the ODI team for Zimbabwe tour.


5. India-s Vikas Gowda brought India's its first gold in the 20th Asian Athletics Championships in Pune yesterday. MR Poovama too produced an admirable show to bag the women's 400m silver (clocking 53.37s) and Ratiram Saini won a bronze in the men's 10,000m at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex.


 


 


6 July


Current Affairs Global - 6 July 2013


1. French 15th seed Marion Bartoli defeated Germany's 23rd seed Sabine Lisicki 6-1, 6-4 in straight sets to win her maiden Wimbledon title at the All England Club in London today.


2. World soccer body FIFA again banned Iraq from holding any friendly football matches due to increasing violence. Earlier FIFA banned Iraq for the same reason and the ban was lifted just three months before.


 


Current Affairs India - 6 July 2013


1. R. Chandrasekhar took overe as Nasscom President at a time when the more than $100-billion IT industry is facing growth pangs. The former Telecom Secretary need to steer the industry as it faces challenges such as immigration hurdles and global economic downturn. He will succeed current Nasscom President Som Mittal, whose tenure expires in January 2014.


2. M S Raghavan has been appointed as the new chairman and managing director (CMD) of IDBI Bank. The post was lying vacant since May 31 when the previous chairman R K Malla had demitted his office. Before this, Raghavan was the executive director with the state-owned Bank of India and a general manager at Indian Overseas Bank.


3. India-s largest stock market National Stock Exchange (NSE) has launched ''LIX 15'' index, which will be available in the derivatives segment. This index will help to provide exposure to the liquid stocks. The index would be disseminated online from this Monday (8th July).


 


7 July


Forex Reserves decreased by USD 3.2 billion to 284.644 billion


India-s Forex reserves were decreased by USD 3.2 billion to 284.644 billion for the week ended 28th June as per the recent weekly data released by RBI. Forex reserves dropped as RBI intervened to arrest steep rupee depreciation.


This decrease was mainly due to decrease in the reserve portion in the Foreign Currency Assets.  The Foreign Currency Assets (FCA) was decreased by USD 3.154 billion to 255.278 billion for the same week. The SDRs (Special Drawing Rights) and Reserve portion with IMF were also decreased by USD 30.8 million and USD 15.5 million respectively for the same week. Gold values remained unchanged at USD 22.836 billion for the same reporting week.


Current Affairs Global - 7 July 2013


1. A former UN atomic energy chief and Nobel laureate, also the leading liberal opposition of Egypt was named prime minister of his nation's interim government yesterday. Mohamed ElBaradei will form a caretaker government that will oversee Egypt's affairs following military coup.


2. Scottish Andy Murray defeated top seeded Novak Djokovic by 6-4, 7-5, 6-4 today to become the first Briton to win the Wimbledon men's singles title since 1936. Murray, the second seed, broke top seed Djokovic twice in the first set on a baking Centre Court and held serve to love to clinch it in exactly an hour.


 


Current Affairs India - 7 July 2013


1. In a well-coordinated terror attack, nine low-intensity serial blasts targeted the world renowned pilgrimage town of Bodh Gaya and Mahabodhi Temple complex, one of the holiest Buddhist shrines and a popular UNESCO heritage site. The attack left two monks injured. The temple and the Bodhi Tree, under which Lord Buddha is believed to have attained enlightenment, did not suffer any damage in the blasts.


2. UAE Exchange, one of the largest foreign exchange firms in the UAE, has applied to RBI for a banking license in India. The group has been present in India since 1999 and has strong presence in other countries, from where Indian nationals in MEA regions send money to their families in India.


 


8 July


 


Current Affairs Global - 8 July 2013


1. Sebastian Vettel won the German Grand Prix yesterday and this is his first Grand Prix win on home soil. This was his fourth this year and the 30th of his career and it lifted him 34 points clear of nearest rival, Spaniard Fernando Alonso of Ferrari, in the drivers' championship. Vettel became the first German to win a German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring in the history of the Formula One world championship.


Current Affairs India - 8 July 2013


1. The Central government has appointed S. B. Mainak, Executive Director, LIC, as Managing Director of the state-owned life insurance giant. He will hold office from the date of assuming charge till February 29, 2016.


2. Sudhir Kumar Jain has been appointed as the new Chairman and Managing Director of Syndicate Bank. He will hold the post of Chairman and Managing Director for a period of five years from the date of his taking charge. Prior to this appointment, Jain was an Executive Director at Bank of Baroda.


3. Vidya Balan  got the Best Actress award for her performance in Kahaani and Ranbir Kapoor won the Best Actor award for Barfi at 14th IIFA (International Indian Film Academy) awards 2013 held in Macau. Barfi also won the award for best film.


4. The Basketball Federation of India (BFI) has appointment Spain-s Francisco Garcia as head coach of the Indian senior women-s basketball team. Garcia has coached various Spanish Federation Youth National Development Camps.


5. Shiva Thapa (56kg) has become the youngest pugilist from India to won a gold medal at the Asian Championships at Amman, Jordan, today. He defeated home favourite Obada Alkabeh on a split decision of 2-1 after fighting out a tactically superior bout. L Devendro Singh (49kg) and Mandeep Jangra (69kg) won silver medals while Manoj Kumar (64kg) won the bronze medal.


6. India climbed to second spot in the latest ICC Test rankings published today. South Africa has strengthened its position as the number one side as per the updated championship table.


 


9 July


Current Affairs Global - 9 July 2013


1. EU Finance Ministers have given final approval for Latvia to join the eurozone on 1st January. Following this, The Latvian currency, the lat, will be converted into euros at a rate of 0.7028 lats per euro. Latvia thus becomes the 18th — and the second Baltic nation — to use the common currency.


2. China's inflation rate rose by more than expected to 2.7% in June compared to 2.1% in the previous month. Food inflation jumped to 4.9% in the same month compared to 3.2% in the earlier month.


At the same time, China has left its economic growth projection for the year unchanged at 7.5%.


Current Affairs India - 9 July 2013


1. JMM Legislative Party Leader Hemant Soren has staked the claim to form a new government in Jharkhand. He met the Governor Sayed Ahmed today evening to stake his claim with 43 MLAs supporting him which includes name from the JMM, Congress, RJD and other smaller parties and Independents.


2. Former Delhi Police commissioner Krishan Kant Paul has been appointed as the new governor of Meghalaya. He will replace Ranjit Shekhar Mooshahary. He was administered the oath of office by Meghalaya High Court Chief Justice T. Meena Kumari at the Raj Bhavan here. He was the Delhi Police commissioner from February 2004 to July 2007 and became a member of the Union Public Service Commission in July, 2007. He had also served in the Intelligence Bureau and the Research and Analysis Wing.


3. Jamia Millia Islamia, vice-chancellor Najeeb Jung, has been appointed as Delhi lieutenant-governor. He will replace Tejendra Khanna.


Punjab Congress chief Virendra Kataria has been appointed as lieutenant-governor of Puducherry. He will succeed Iqbal Singh.


Lt Gen (retired) A K Singh has been appointed as lieutenant-governor of Andaman & Nicobar Islands. He will replace Lt Gen (retired) Bhopinder Singh.


4. India-s largest IT services company TCS has replaced its group firm Tata Steel as the country's most admired company, as per a Fortune list released today. TCS is followed by Hindustan Unilever, ITC, Infosys and SBI in the top-five list. Both ITC and Infosys are ranked at the third position. The rankings have taken into account various factors such as corporate governance, innovativeness, CSR and leadership. L&T (6th rank), Maruti Suzuki (9th) and ICICI Bank (10th) also feature in the top ten.


5. State Bank of India (SBI) has launched State Bank Xpress Money Card a co-branded prepaid card  that can be loaded up to Rs 50,000 with UAE Exchange and Financial Services today. This card can be used for loading inward remittances received under money transfer service scheme (MTSS) of Reserve Bank of India (RBI), on VISA network. State Bank Xpress Money Card is meant for crediting inward remittances received through UAE Exchange and Financial Services.


6. Rajeev Rishi has been appointed as the new Chairman and Managing Director of Central Bank of India. Before that, he was an Executive Director at Indian Bank. Rishi will assume charge on 1st August this year and his appointment is for a period of five years. He will succeed incumbent Chairman and Managing Director M.V. Tanksale is who will retire on 31st July.


7. Australian Michael Nobbs has been sacked as Indian hockey team's chief coach due to non-performance today. After this, he has become the fourth foreign coach to be shown the door before completion of the full tenure.


8. Indian woman shooter Lajja Goswami has bagged a silver medal in 50 meter riffle three position in I S S F, World Shooting Championship in Spain. Italy's Petra Jublesing bagged gold in this event.


9. Indian women weightlifters won the team title in the just concluded Asian Junior Championships at Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan. The junior women lifters had won seven medals, three silver and four bronze, to accumulate 463 points and top the standings. China collected 403 points to finish second followed by Kyrgyzstan 359 in the same event. This is the first time that India finished on top ahead of the likes of China, Korea, Kazakhstan and Thailand.


 


10 July


Current Affairs Global - 10 July 2013


1. The IMF has projected world economic growth rate at 3.1% for 2013 and 3.8% for 2014 due to slower economic recovery process. The IMF has also predicted that the overall growth rate in the developing countries would be around 5% as it lowered the forecast for growth rates in the BRICS nations comprised of Brazil, Russia, China, India and South Africa.


2. China has reported an unexpected drop in its exports and imports which will increase concern regarding the economic recovery process of the world-s second largest economy. Exports dropped 3.1% and imports dropped by 0.7% in June compared to same month last year. Drop in imports confirms lower domestic demand due to lower economic activity. This data


Current Affairs India - 10 July 2013


1. Noted Maestro Zubin Mehta has been named for the Tagore Award for Cultural Harmony for the year 2013 in recognition of his outstanding contribution to cultural harmony. The Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh led High-level Jury has selected Mehta for this award. The annual award was instituted by the government during the commemoration of 150th Birth Anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore. The first Tagore Award was conferred on Pt. Ravi Shankar, the Indian Sitar Maestro in 2012.


2. Dr Laxman Singh Rathore, Director General of Meteorology & Permanent Representative of India with World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has been selected as Co-Vice Chairman of Intergovernmental Board of Climate Services (IBCS) during its first meeting held at Geneva last week. After his appointment, India is poised to play a crucial role in implementation of Global Framework of Climate Service (GFCS).


3. Karnataka Government has launched a new program named --Anna Bhagya-- todayBy this program, Government wants to distribute 30 kg rice at one rupee per Kg to over 98 lakh BPL and Antyodaya card holders in the state. This program will cost Rs 4400 crore very month for the government and it aims to eliminate hunger and malnutrition in the state.


4. The Finance Ministry has notified the formation of Kerala Gramin Bank by merging the South and North Malabar Gramin banks, the two regional rural banks of Kerala. The newly formed bank comes into existence with effect from July 8 as per Government of India Extraordinary Gazette Notification. The command area of the new bank will be the combined operational area of the two RRBs, that is, all the 14 districts of Kerala. The headquarters of the new bank will be at Malappuram and is sponsored by Canara Bank.


5. Ahmedabad-based company eInfochips won the -Company of the Year- award in the semiconductor and product design category at the India Electronics Awards 2013. The award was presented by Frost & Sullivan at India Electronics Awards held at New Delhi yesterday. The Frost & Sullivan Award recognises excellence in growth strategy and implementation, degree of innovation with new products and technologies.


6. IMF has revised Economic outlook for India. As per IMF, growth rate in India will be around 5.6% in 2013 compared to earlier projection of 5.8%. It has also projected 2014 GDP growth at 6.3% compare to earlier projection of 6.4%.


7. Olympian Maharaj Krishan Kaushik has been appointed as a coach of the senior men's hockey team today, just two days after chief coach Michael Nobbs was sacked because of non-performance. Kaushik, a member of India's last of the eight Olympic gold medal winning side in 1980 Moscow Games, will assist high performance director, Roelant Oltmans, who will now double up as a chief coach till a suitable replacement for Nobbs is found.


 


11 July


Current Affairs Global - 11 July 2013


1. World Population Day is observed today (11th July) across the world. The key aim of World Population Day is to raise awareness about global population issues. The theme for 2013 is -Adolescent pregnancy with an aspiration of safe childbirth and that each pregnancy is wanted-. About 16 million girls under age 18 give birth each year. Another 3.2 million undergo unsafe abortions. The vast majority - 90 per cent -- of the pregnant adolescents in the developing world are married.


2. ICC announced today, former Australia spinner Shane Warne will be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame on July 19 during the tea interval of the second Ashes Test between England and Australia at Lord-s. With this, Warne becomes the 69th male member of the Hall of Fame, and joins fellow 2012-13 inductees Brian Lara of the West Indies, England-s Enid Bakewell and former Australia team-mate Glenn McGrath in being recognised by the ICC and the living members of the Hall of Fame. Warne represented Australia in 145 Tests between 1992 and 2007, claiming 708 Test wickets at an average of 25.41. He was the first cricketer to reach 700 Test scalps.


 


Current Affairs India - 11 July 2013


1. The Jharkhand Governor Syed Ahmed has invited JMM leader Hemant Soren to take oath as the ninth Chief Minister of the State. He will take oath on Saturday at 9.00 A.M. Soren enjoys the support of Congress party, RJD, six independents and one from Marxist Coordination Committee of the state assembly besides 18 of his own JMM party.


2. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved disinvestment of government stake in State Trading Corporation (STC) and ITDC, which would fetch around 30 crore Rs for the government.


3. The Union Cabinet has accorded in-principle approval for formation of a Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). The CAA will replace the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), as new aviation regulator with full operational and financial autonomy.


4. The Atomic Energy Regulatory Board has granted its clearance for -first approach to criticality- for the first unit of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project today. This is the penultimate clearance from the atomic regulator. The Unit-1 is the first of the two units, each of a capacity of 1,000 MW, coming up in collaboration with Russia at the Kudankulam town in southern Tamil Nadu. The plant is being put up by the Government-owned Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL).


 


12 July


Current Affairs Global - 12 July 2013


1. Global credit rating agency Standard & Poor's has upgraded its credit outlook for the Republic of Ireland from "stable" to "positive" as its debts are falling faster than expected. Ireland lost its AAA credit rating in 2009 following the global financial crisis and it now stands at BBB-plus.


Current Affairs India - 12 July 2013


1. Veteran Bollywood actor and Dadasaheb Phalake Award winner Pran Krishan Sikand, known as Pran, passed away tonight at Lilawati Hospital in Mumbai. He was 93. Pran, a beloved star of number of hit Hindi movies such as Half Ticket, Ram aur Shyam, Zanjeer, Johny Mera Naam, Karz was awarded with Dadasaheb Phalke award this year.


2. Shalini Singh, a deputy editor with The Hindu, has bagged the prestigious Prem Bhatia Award for Political Reporting - 2013. She has been awarded for her -excellent coverage of several key issues-, particularly her -reporting of the telecom and coalgate scandals-.


3. Eminent Carnatic musician Nukala Chinna Satyanarayana passed away today following brief illness. He was 89.  Satyanarayana, a recipient of Padma Bhushan and several other prestigious awards. He fascinated music lovers both in India and abroad with his soulful rendition of Carnatic music.


4. India won the Tri-Nation Cricket Series after defeating Sri Lanka by one wicket in a close final match at Port of Spain yesterday. Chasing 202 runs, India made 203 for nine wickets with 2 balls to spare. Skipper M.S. Dhoni again proved that he is the best ODI finisher after scoring 15 runs in the last over to secure win for India.


India's back-to-back title triumphs have helped the world champion team retain its top position in the ICC ODI rankings, as per the latest list published today. India has been in the number one position since February 2013, when they beat England 3-2 at home to regain the top place. India retain  1st rank in the table with 122 rating points, ahead of Australia (114 rating points) and England (112 rating points).


13 July


Forex Reserves decreased by USD 4.477 billion to 280.167 billion


India-s Forex reserves were decreased by USD 4.477 billion to 280.167 billion for the week ended 5th July as per the recent weekly data released by RBI. This is the largest fall in forex reserves in last three weeks as RBI intervened to arrest steep rupee depreciation. The central bank was believed to have increased dollar sales to stabilise the rupee, which closed at 59.64 a dollar on Friday after touching an all-time low of 61.20 on Monday.


This decrease was mainly due to decrease in the reserve portion in the Foreign Currency Assets.  The Foreign Currency Assets (FCA) was decreased by USD 3.175 billion to 252.102 billion for the same week. The SDRs (Special Drawing Rights) and Reserve portion with IMF were also decreased by USD 14.6 million and USD 7.4 million respectively for the same week. Gold values were also decreased by USD 1.28 billion to USD 21.55 billion for the same reporting week.


AT&T to acquire mobile carrier Leap Wireless for nearly USD 4 billion


US Telecom giant AT&T has announced plans to acquire mobile carrier Leap Wireless in a deal worth at least USD 4 billion which will give the telecom giant more spectrum and the Cricket prepaid phone franchise. AT&T will pay USD 15 per share and assume USD 2.8 billion in debt of Leap Wireless.


Under the agreement, AT&T will acquire all of Leap's stock and wireless properties, including licenses, network assets, retail stores and subscribers. It will also acquire the five million customers now using Leap. This deal will definitely boost AT&T-s subscriber base as well wireless business across USA.


India-s Exports dropped by 4.5% in June; trade deficit drops to give relief to government


India-s exports dropped for the second consecutive month in June 2013 as global economic uncertainties continues to hurt demand. But a sharp slowdown in gold import compared to the previous two months has helped check the rising trade deficit. Total exports dropped by 4.56% in June compared to same month last year to USD 233.78 billion. At the same time, total imports dropped by 0.37% in June compared to same month last year to USD 36.03 billion.


A steep decline in import of gold and silver to USD 2.45 billion in June 2013 compared to USD 8.4 billion and USD 7.5 billion in May and April respectively after increase in import duties on gold by the government played a key role to reduce trade deficit to USD 12.2 billion. The fall in trade deficit levels in June has come as a relief for the Government and RBI as it will reduce pressure on Indian Rupee.


Cumulative exports during April-June for financial year 2013-14 dropped 1.41% to USD 72.45 billion and cumulative imports during the period were increased by 5.99% to USD 122.6 billion. The trade deficit for April-June of financial year 2013-14 was at USD 50.18 billion which was much higher than the first quarter deficit of the previous fiscal year at USD 42.21 billion.


India-s retail inflation jumps to 9.87% in June; Rate cut hopes dashed


India-s Retail inflation, measured by Consumer Price Index, jumped to 9.87% in June compared to 9.31% in May due to higher price of food items. Retail inflation in rural areas increased to 9.63% in June compared to 8.98% in previous month and urban areas jumped to 10.13% in June compared to 9.65% in May.


Also food inflation climbed to 11.84% in June from 10.65% last month due to higher price increase of vegetables. This higher retail inflation and food inflation may stop RBI to cut rates further next time when it will announce its monetary policy.


India-s IIP contracted by 1.6% in May


India-s Index of Industrial Production (IIP), the most important indicator to judge the performance of industrial sector, contracted by 1.6% in May compared to 2% growth in April. This is the lowest IIP data in last 11 months. IIP growth stood at 2.5% in same month last year.


The manufacturing sector, which constitutes over 75% of the overall index, contracted by 2% in May compared to 2.8% growth in the previous month. This is the main reason behind overall IIP contraction. Overall, only 11 of the 22 industry groups in manufacturing sector have shown positive growth in May.


At the same time, Retail inflation for June stood at 9.87%. Now RBI has to take a call regarding rate cut considering high retail inflation and contraction in the IIP numbers.


 


14 July


Current Affairs Global - 14 July 2013


1. The opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) defeated Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) to capture power in Bhutan-s second general election yesterday. PDP is known as an organization whose foreign policy is in alignment with that of the Bhutanese monarchy, which stands for a strong friendship between India and Bhutan. PDP won 32 seats and DPT 15. PDP president Tshering Tobgay (47),who contested from Haa in western Bhutan bordering the strategic Chumbi Valley, is likely to be the next prime minister.


2. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appointed Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, a former deputy president of South Africa and women-s advocate, as the new head of the United Nations body. Phumzile will be responsible for promoting women-s rights and their full participation in global affairs.


3. ElBaradei sworn in as Egypt's new vice-president. Prominent liberal Egyptian leader Mohamed ElBaradei was sworn in as Egypt's interim vice president for foreign relations. The appointment of ElBaradei, a former head of the UN nuclear watchdog and a Nobel peace laureate, follows the military overthrow of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi earlier this month.


4. Global credit rating agency Fitch has cut France's credit rating to -AA-plus- from -AAA- due to its uncertain economic outlook amid the ongoing euro zone crisis and the need for structural reform. The outlook is termed as -stable-.


5. Amar G. Bose, the visionary engineer, inventor and billionaire entrepreneur and founder of the Bose Corp., passed away on Friday at his home in Wayland, Mass. He was 83. He became synonymous with high-quality audio systems and speakers for home users, auditoriums and automobiles due to his contribution in the field. As founder and chairman of the privately held company, Bose focused relentlessly on acoustic engineering innovation.


6. Controversial Italian businessman Ottavio Quattrocchi, a key figure in the Bofors payoffs scandal, passed away in Milan yesterday. He was 74. With his death the secrets of Bofors scandal for which former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi lost his post are lost forever.


Current Affairs India - 14 July 2013


1. Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader Hemant Soren sworn-in as ninth Chief Minister of Jharkhand in the premises of the Raj Bhavan yesterday. Besides JMM, Congress, RJD, independents and others are also supporting the new coalition. With this formation of new government, the President Rule also ends in Jharkhand.


2. Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project will start producing electricity within next 20 days as its core gains criticality yesterday midnight. Initially, it will produce 400 MWs of electricity, which will be raised to 1000 MWs after another 15 days. With the commissioning of the project nuclear power generation in the country will rise to 5780 MWs.


3. Shalini Singh, a Deputy Editor withThe Hindu, won the prestigious Prem Bhatia Award for Political Reporting-2013. She has been selected for her -excellent coverage of several key issues,- particularly her -reporting of the telecom and Coalgate scandals.- Jaideep Hardikar, a Special Correspondent with The Telegraph, bagged the Prem Bhatia award for excellence in environmental reporting, particularly related to rural and agrarian issues.


 


 


15 July


Current Affairs Global - 15 July 2013


1. China's economic growth slowed to 7.5% in the second quarter (April-June) of the current year compared to the same period last year. China-s economic growth stood at 7.7% in the previous quarter. This is the second straight quarter of weaker expansion. This confirms that Chinese economy is still struggling to get back on its previous growth track.


2. A war crimes court in Bangladesh has sentenced Jamaat-e-Islami leader Ghulam Azam to 90 years of imprisonment and found him guilty of five charges relating to Bangladesh's 1971 war of independence with Pakistan. Ghulam Azam was sentenced to 90 years in jail for conspiracy, incitement, planning, abetting and failing to prevent murder during the war by the International Crimes Tribunal. The Tribunal in Bangladesh was set up by the current Awami League-led government in 2010 to try alleged collaborators of the Pakistani army during Bangladesh's war of independence.


Current Affairs India - 15 July 2013


1. Just 15 minutes to midnight yesterday, the iconic telegram became a history in Delhi with the last message sent to Rahul Gandhi. The telegram counter closed at 11:45 PM and the 163-year old telegram service in the country comes to an end.


2. The Reserve Bank of India has penalised 22 banks today for violating for violating rules for customer identification, anti-money laundering norms. It imposed a fine of Rs. 49.5 crore (ranging from 5 million rupees ($83,400) to around 30 million rupees) on 22 banks, including SBI, PNB, Yes Bank, Kotak Mahindra, Canara Bank and Bank of India. The RBI had carried out a study of books of accounts and compliance systems of banks in April 2013 which revealed many didn't adhere to know-your-customer rules, including those related to cash transactions, sale of gold coins and import of gold coins on consignment basis.


3. Indian shooter, Kynan Chenai has won a trap gold medal in the Singapore Open Shooting Championships. He shot 10 in the final to pip local favourite Zain Amat by three scoring points for the coveted yellow metal. Amat shot seven in the final.


4. Grandmaster and former world junior champion Abhijeet Gupta won the Commonwealth Chess Championship yesterday. He settled for a draw with Indian national title holder G Akash in the 11th and final round. Gupta scored nine points out of a possible eleven and had the best tiebreak score to win the gold medal in the championship that also incorporated the South African International open.


India-s FDI jumped by 25% to USD 2.32 billion in April; highest in last 6 months


India-s Foreign direct investment (FDI) increased by 25% in April compared to same month last year to USD 2.32 billion, the highest level in the past six months. In April 2012, the country had received FDI worth of USD 1.85 billion. Total FDI inflows in financial year 2012-13 stood at USD 22.42 billion compared to USD 36.50 billion in previous financial year 2011-12.


The sectors that received large FDI inflows in April include hotels and tourism (USD 2.32 billion), pharmaceuticals (USD 987 million), services (USD 238 million), chemicals (USD 51 million) and construction (USD 32 million).


The most FDI in April came from Singapore (USD 1.29 billion), followed by Mauritius (USD 355 million), the Netherlands (USD 173 million) and the US (USD 149 million). This is the first time, Singapore replaced Mauritius as the largest source of FDI.


An increase in FDI will help support the rupee, which depreciated to a record low of 61.21 against the US dollar earlier this month. High FDI increases USD in the currency market which helps Indian Rupee for further depreciation.


India-s overall inflation increased marginally to 4.86% in June


The overall inflation, measured by Wholesale Price Index, increased marginally to 4.86% in June, compared to 4.7% during the previous month. The inflation stood at 7.58% during the same month last year.


The rate of inflation of food articles, which has 14.34% share in the WPI basket, jumped to 9.74% in June compared to 8.25% in May. The worst affected was vegetable items, which rose to 16.47% in June compared to 4.85% last month, it was -9.05% in April. Inflation in onion jumped up by 114% in June compared to 97.40% in the previous month. Inflation in the manufactured products category which has 64.97% share in the WPI basket dropped to 2.75% in June compared to 3.11% in May. Inflation in fuel and power items also dropped to 7.12% in June compared to 7.32% in May. Inflation on primary articles, which has a share of 20.12% in the index, increased to 8.14% in June compared to 6.65% in the previous month.


RBI will closely watch this inflation data along with retail inflation and IIP numbers published last week while formulating its first-quarter policy scheduled for 30th July.


 


16 July


Current Affairs Global - 16 July 2013


1. Global credit rating agency Fitch has downgraded the eurozone-s temporary bailout fund by one notch from top most -AAA- rating to -AA+- rating after it also downgraded France-s credit rating from AAA.  It said all of the fund-s issued debt is guaranteed by countries with ratings of AAA or AA+ but if any of those ratings fall below AA+, the fund-s rating would be reviewed. Germany and France, Europe-s two largest economies are the fund-s most important guarantors.


2. US consumer price inflation jumped to 1.8% in June comared to 1.4% in May due to higher prices of clothing, petrol and services. It is still below the target inflation figure of 2%.


3. UK Inflation, measured by the consumer price index (CPI) increased to 2.9% in June compared to 2.7% in May. This is the 14month high inflation figure though it is lower than market expectations.


4. The Pakistan Cricket Board has appointed former captain Moin Khan as the chief selector after the sudden resignation of Iqbal Qasim last month. Moin, 41, is the youngest person to be named to the chief selector-s post by the board.


Current Affairs India - 16 July 2013


1. Indian government has raised FDI limits in two sectors today in order to attract more foreign inflow in the country. FDI limit in telecom has been increased from 74% to 100% and for defence sector FDI limit has been increased from 26% to 49%. Also it has made FDI in four areas gas refineries, commodity exchanges, power trading and stock exchanges to be done through FIPB route only.


2. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has lowered India's growth forecast to 5.8% for current financial year 2013-14 from earlier forecast of 6% announced in April this year. This lower growth forecast was due to the slow progress in pushing through the reforms needed to ease the business bottlenecks. It has maintained the GDP growth forecast for financial year 2014-15 at 6.5%.


3. The finance ministry has identified Usha Ananthasubramanian, executive director of Punjab National Bank, to be the chief executive of Bhartiya Mahila Bank, which will launch its operations from November with six branches. -Bhartiya Mahila Bank- will be the first all-women bank of the country. The government will formally announce the name of the CEO after the Reserve Bank of India has issued the licence.


Senior police officer Bhim Sain Bassi, 1977 batch IPS officer, will be the new Delhi Police Commissioner. He is currently working as the Special Commissioner of Police (administration) in Delhi police. He will assume charge on 1st August and he will succeed incumbent Neeraj Kumar who retires on 31st of this month.


4. Santosh B Nayar has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of the Industrial Financial Corporation of India (IFCI). It was established in 1948 under The Industrial Finance Corporation Act of 1948 to provide term finance to large industries in India.


5. The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT), a quasi-judicial body that hears cases related to market regulator SEBI, has appointed Justice J.P. Devadhar as its Presiding Officer. Justice Devadhar has been practicing law at Bombay High Court since 1977 in Constitutional Law and other branches of Civil Law and particularly Cooperative Societies Act, Service Law, Rent Act, Customs Act, Excise Act and Direct Tax Laws such as Income Tax, Wealth Tax and Gift Tax.


6. Indian boxing team has bagged nine medals, including four gold, in the Golden Glove of Vojvodina, an international boxing tournament being held in Kikinda, Serbia. A Silambarasan (52kg) and Manish Solanki (69kg) bagged the gold medal in the men's section while Rajesh Kumari (48kg) and Chanda Udanshive (51kg) won the same in the women's division. India's tally also included five Silver medals which came through Lalitha Prasad (49kg), Neeraj Parashar (64kg) (men-s category), Marthamma Sattivada (64kg), Diksha (91kg) and Pema Chotan (+91kg) (women-s category). Silambarasan was declared the "Best Fighter of the Tournament'.


At last RBI announces some measures to arrest Rupee fall


In order to stop further Rupee depreciation, the Reserve Bank of India came out with a number of measures today, including hiking the lending rates for banks and sucking up of 12,000 crore rupees. The measures came after high level meetings between the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister, followed by discussions with RBI Governor D Subbarao yesterday.


Under the measures announced, the Marginal Standing Facility, MSF rate has also been increased to 10.25% from the current 8.25%. Accordingly, bank rate has also been adjusted to 10.25%. MSF allows banks to borrow money from the central bank at a higher rate when there is significant liquidity crunch. RBI will also sale Government of India Securities of 12,000 crore rupees on 18th of July from the market. All these steps will reduce supply of Indian Rupee in the currency market and help in rupee appreciation. After these measures, Indian Rupee closed to 2 week high during today-s trade.


 


17 July


Current Affairs Global - 17 July 2013


1. US regulators have fined Barclays USD 453 million for manipulating energy markets in California and other states from November 2006 to December 2008. Barclays and four of its traders must also pay USD 34.9 million to the low-income home energy assistance programs of Arizona, California, Oregon and Washington.


2. Real Madrid has been named as the most valuable club in the list of the world-s 50 most valuable sports teams released by Forbes yesterday. The list was dominated by National Football League (NFL) teams. The nine-time European champions were worth USD 3.3 billion, up from USD 1.88 billion last year, due to large part to increased revenue from deals with Adidas and Emirates Airlines. Manchester United (USD 3.17 billion) got second spot while Spanish soccer champions Barcelona (USD 2.6 billion) got third place in the same list.


 


Current Affairs India - 17 July 2013


1. The Supreme Court of India refused to reduce the age of Juvenile from 18 years to 16 years and dismissed the plea that said minors involved in heinous crimes should not be protected under the law. The decision was taken by the Bench headed by Chief Justice of India, Altamas Kabir. Following the alleged involvement of the minor in the 16 December 2012 Delhi gang rape case, a batch of PILs was filed in the apex court pleading that the Act should be amended and a minor, involved in heinous crimes, should not be protected under the law.


2. Dr Nirmalya Kumar, Professor of Marketing at the London Business School, will join Tata Sons as Member - Group Executive Council reporting to the Chairman, Cyrus P. Mistry. He will be the fourth appointee to the council following Madhu Kannan, Mukund Govind Rajan and N.S. Rajan. He will hold responsibility for strategy at the group level.


3. The government has approved a proposal to amend Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) Act for providing more powers to the market regulator to crack down on ponzi schemes. The decision will also give Sebi powers to conduct search and seizure operations and access call data records. Currently, SEBI can conduct search and seizure only after approval from the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, but this provision is often seen as delaying proceedings and hampering the confidential nature of probe. This step has been taken following some Ponzi scams specially Sarda scam in West Bengal.


 


18 July


Current Affairs Global - 18 July 2013


1. Former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. director Rajat Gupta was ordered to pay a USD 13.9 million civil penalty and banned from serving as an officer or director of a public company for involving in Insider trading case. The US Securities and Exchange Commission said the order was issued earlier in the day by US District Judge Jed Rakoff in Manhattan, who also oversaw Gupta's related criminal trial. He was convicted to providing insider information of Goldman board meetings in 2008 to Galleon Group hedge fund owner Rajaratnam.


2. Versatile stage and screen actor Paul Bhattacharjee has been found dead. He was 53. Scotland Yard found his body in the cliffs at Splash Point in Seaford, East Sussex today. He appeared in the James Bond film "Casino Royale" and "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel".


Current Affairs India - 18 July 2013


1. The Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Akhilesh Yadav, launched a state-wide campaign to improve family health across 75 districts of the state. Hausla, the campaign-s twin goals include galvanizing state health systems to deliver high-quality, accessiblehealth programs and services, while also increasing awareness and utilization of services by families and communities across the state-s 75 districts.


2. Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India launched the nation-wide National Tobacco Control Campaign known as- -Tears you apart-. The aim of the campaign is to raise the public awareness regarding dangers of smokeless tobacco which is consumed by millions of Indians every day. The Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) revealed that around 21 crore Indians make use of the smokeless tobacco.


3. The Union Cabinet of India gave approval to rename the Bengaluru International Airport as Kempegowda International Airport yesterday. The demand to rename the airport has been pending since a long time. Bengaluru International Airport (BIA) is the first and foremost Greenfield Airport in South India.


4. The Reserve Bank opened a special borrowing window of Rs 25,000 crore to help the crisis-ridden mutual funds tide over liquidity problems. RBI has decided to conduct a special 3-day repo auction under which banks would be encouraged to raise funds totaling Rs 25,000 crore at 10.25% for on lending to the mutual funds.


5. In the biggest foreign investment pullout in Indian history, world's largest steel maker ArcelorMittal scrapped its USD 12 billion (Rs 50,000 crore) steel plant in Odisha yesterday over inordinate delays, problems in acquiring land and securing iron ore linkages. The decision comes a day after South Korean steel giant Posco pulled out of a USD 5.3-billion steel project in Karnataka due to similar problems of delay in land acquisition and other clearances.


6. US billionaire Warren Buffett-led investment firm Berkshire Hathaway Inc has decided to close its online insurance broking business in India. Berkshire had forayed into the Indian non-life insurance sector as a corporate agent of Bajaj Allianz General in 2011. After its exit, all the customers sourced by them would be provided seamless service by an exclusive team set up at Bajaj Allianz General Insurance.


 


19 July


Current Affairs Global - 19 July 2013


1. US President Barack Obama has nominated Nisha Desai Biswal, an accomplished Indian-American administrator, to head the South Asia bureau in the US state department. When confirmed by the Senate, Desai will become the first person of Indian or even South Asian origin to head the bureau, which oversees US foreign policy and relations with India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Maldives and Bhutan.


Current Affairs India - 19 July 2013


1. Justice P Sathasivam sworn in as the 40th Chief Justice of India (CJI) today by President Pranab Mukherjee. He took over the post from Justice Altamas Kabir, who served as the CJI for over nine months and retired yesterday.


2. Samar Mukherjee, the freedom fighter as well as the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader passed away in Kolkata following a range of illnesses. He was 100 years. He joined the Communist Party of India-Marxist in 1964 and joined CPI in the year 1940. He was the representative of Howrah in the Lok Sabha for three years in a row between 1971 and 1984 and was also elected to Rajya Sabha in 1986.


3. Former South Africa player Dave Staniforth has been appointed as goalkeeping coach and strategic analyst of the Indian senior and junior men's hockey teams. He has also worked as goalkeeping coach with the South African national side for three years.


 


20 July


 


21 July


Current Affairs Global - 21 July 2013


1. Detroit, the cradle of America-s automobile industry, filed for bankruptcy on Thursday. This is the largest US city ever to file for bankruptcy and also the largest municipal bankruptcy filing in US history in terms of debt. The debt is as much as USD 20 billion.


2. China Saturday successfully launched three satellites for scientific experiments, authorities said. The Chuangxin-3, Shiyan-7 and Shijian-15 satellites were boosted by a Long March-4C carrier rocket, according to the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in north China's Shanxi province.


3. Chinese authorities have given the banking industry greater freedom by allowing banks to set their own lending rates. Earlier the Chinese banks were not allowed to lend at rates below a certain level set by the People's Bank of China (PBOC). This would lease to lower cost for the Chinese companies.


4. The King of Belgium, King Albert II made an announcement that he will abdicate on 21 July due to age and health reasons. Albert-s eldest son Crown Prince Philippe, 53, will be the next King.


Current Affairs India - 21 July 2013


1. The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance has finalized its report on Goods and Services Tax (GST) which will be tabled in Parliament in the next monsoon session beginning 5th August. Panel has suggested that the Centre should prepare a framework for the GST regime in which the revenue generating states should be adequately compensated.


2. The veteran Parliamentarian Shriniwas Dadasaheb Patil has sworn in as the new Governor of Sikkim. He replaced incumbent Balmiki Prasad Singh.


3. Khurshed Alam Khan, a former Union Minister and father of External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid, died on Saturday at the age of 95. He had served as Minister of State under the late Prime Ministers Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi and he was in a major way responsible for creation of the Jamia Milia Islamia as an independent university through a Parliamentary law, had served as Chancellor of the university.


4. Union Sports Ministry has recommended hockey legend Major Dhyan Chand's name for highest civilian honour - Bharat Ratna. Dhyan Chand won three gold medals at the Olympics -- 1928 in Amsterdam, 1932 in Los Angeles and 1936 in Berlin. He passed away in 1979.


5. The Indian tennis players of Purav Raja and Divij Sharan have clinched its first ever ATP title, by winning the Colombia Open Tennis tournament in Bogota. In the Men's Doubles title clash, the fourth seeded Indian duo defeated the higher seeded French-Dutch combination of Edouard Roger-Vasselin and Igor Sijsling by 7-6, 7-6 to win the title.


Forex Reserves increased by USD 21.1 million to 280.188 billion


India-s Forex reserves were increased by USD 21.1 million to 280.188 billion for the week ended 12th July as per the recent weekly data released by RBI.


This increase was mainly due to increase in the reserve portion in the Foreign Currency Assets.  The Foreign Currency Assets (FCA) was increased by USD 33.5 million to 252.136 billion for the same week. The SDRs (Special Drawing Rights) was also increased by USD 6.7 million, however Reserve portion with IMF was decreased by USD 19.1 million for the same week. Gold values were remained unchanged at USD 21.555 billion for the same reporting week.


 


22 July


Current Affairs Global - 22 July 2013


1. World number one Serena Williams won Swedish Open title after beating Sweden-s Johanna Larsson by 6-4, 6-1 to win the $ 235,000 (309,000 euro) tournament in Bastad on Sunday. This is her 53rd WTA title.


Current Affairs India - 22 July 2013


1. The government has allowed Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), to pass orders like search and seizure, attachment of properties, arrest and detention of defaulters. The agency now can pass order to recover the wrongful gains made in contravention of laws. The government has also allowed Sebi to seek information from other regulators within India and abroad with retrospective effect. It will pave way for collection of details pertaining to cases pending for over 15 years now.


2. Satish Babu, Director, International Centre for Free and Open Source Software (ICFOSS), has been elected to the 2014 Nominating Committee of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Numbers and Names (ICANN). The NomCom of ICANN identifies individuals for specific leadership positions within the organisation.


3. Indian athlete Devendra Jhajharia has created history today by becoming the first differently-abled Indian to win a gold medal at the IPC Athletics World Championships in France. He won the gold medal in javelin throw at the sixth edition of the event. Jhajharia hurled the javelin to 57.04 metres in F-46 category, meant for one-armed athletes.


4. India has won a Gold medal in the Women-s Recurve Team event at the Archery World Cup Stage-3 in Medellin, Colombia. India-s Deepika Kumari, Laishram Bombayla Devi and Rimil Biruly defeated the top seeded Chinese Cheng Ming, Xu Jing and Cui Yuanyuan by 201-186 to win Gold after a gap of 2 years.


 


 


23 July


Current Affairs Global - 23 July 2013


1. Football's apex body, FIFA has lifted Cameroon's indefinite suspension from international football, saying its conditions had been met. Earlier Cameron was suspended because of government's interference in the National Football federation. Now FIFA said that Cameron-s football association affiliated clubs, officials and other representatives can immediately resume their activities.


2. Tour de France veteran Stuart O-Grady announced his retirement today after taking part in his record 17th race around France. He started participation in the race in 1997 and the last Tour de France was his 17th appearance.


Current Affairs India - 23 July 2013


1. Poverty ratio in the country has declined to 21.9% in 2011-12 from 37.2% in 2004-05 due to increase in per capita consumption, as per the Planning Commission report published today. The percentage of persons below poverty line in 2011-12 has been estimated at 25.7% in rural areas, 13.7% in urban areas and 21.9% for the country as a whole compared to 41.8%, 25.7% and 37.2% respectively in 2004-05.


2. Consumer confidence in India declined during the second quarter of this year due to continuous rupee depreciation and high inflation, as per a global consumer confidence index study by Nielsen. India-s position dropped to third place as per global ranking after Indonesia and the Philippines.


3. With the rupee still continuing to be weak, the Reserve Bank of India has announced additional liquidity tightening measures today to contain excessive speculation and volatility in the foreign exchange market. RBI has reduced the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) for each bank from 1% of the total deposits to 0.5%, which will limit the access to borrowed funds from the central bank. RBI has also asked banks to maintain higher average CRR (cash reserve ratio) of 99% of the requirement on daily basis as against earlier 70% to suck out more liquidity from the system. The measures could suck out Rs 4,000—Rs 5,000 crore from the system.


4. After his group firm applied for a bank licence last month, Kumar Mangalam Birla said today that he has resigned from the Board of the central bank to avoid any conflict of interest. He was a nominated as a member of the Directors of the Central Board of the RBI in 2006.


5. Abdul Rahim Rather, the Finance Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, has been appointed as the new Chairman of GST Panel by the Empowered Committee of States- Finance Ministers on GST. He replaced Sushil Kumar Modi who had resigned from the post after a split in the JD (U)-BJP Government in Bihar, in which he was the Deputy Chief Minister and the Finance Minister. The Standing Committee on Finance had finalised its views on the GST Bill last week and the report would be now tabled in the parliament during its Monsoon season.


6. Arvind Sharma, the Chairman and CEO of Leo Burnett, India subcontinent was re-elected as the President of Advertising Agencies Association of India (AAAI), at the general body meeting held in Mumbai. M. G. Parameswaran, CEO, Mumbai, Draftfcb+Ulka Advertising has been re-elected as the Vice-President of the association.


7. Veteran actress Manjula Vijayakumar, who had worked in more than 100 films in Tamil, Telugu and Kannada, passed away in Chennai today due to a stomach injury. She was 59. In the late '80s, Manjula was seen in supporting roles. She has worked with the likes of NTR, Sivaji Ganesan, Gemini Ganesan, Kamal Hassan and Rajinikanth.


 


 


24 July


Current Affairs Global - 24 July 2013


1. The Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation announced three individuals and two organizations from Afghanistan, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nepal and the Philippines to receive the Ramon Magsaysay Award today. They are named after a popular Philippine President who died in a plane crash in 1957. This is considered as Asia-s highest honor and is widely regarded as the region-s equivalent of the Nobel Prize.


The winners are 1) Ernesto Domingo (Philippines) for his exemplary embrace of the social mission of medical science and his profession, 2) Komisi Pemberantasan Korupsi (Corruption Eradication Commission) (Indonesia) for its successful campaign against corruption in Indonesia, 3) Lahpai Seng Raw (Myanmar) for her quietly inspiring and inclusive leadership, 4) Habiba Sarabi (Afghanistan) for her bold exercise of leadership to build up a functioning provincial government against great odds, and 5) Shakti Samuha (-Power Group-) (Nepal) for transforming their lives in service to other human trafficking survivors, their passionate dedication towards rooting out a pernicious social evil in Nepal.


 


Current Affairs India - 24 July 2013


1. Suresh Chandra Mohanty has been appointed as the new President of the Institute of Cost Accountants of India for the year 2013-14 today. He becomes the 56th President of the Institute and he replaced Rakesh Singh. Also A.S. Durga Prasad has been elected as Vice-President of the Cost Accountants Institute for the year 2013-14.


2. Low-cost carrier Spice-Jets CEO Neil Mills has resigned following reported differences with the airlines promoter and Sun TV chief Kalanithi Maran. He had joined the airline in 2010 and was hired from FlyDubai. He is the third CEO for the Chennai-based private carrier in the past five years.


3. Indian American author Jhumpa Lahiri-s -The Lowland- has emerged a frontrunner among 13 novels long listed for the Man Booker Prize this year. Her moving tale of family ties will vie for the prestigious literary prize worth 50,000 pounds alongside novels by several lesser-known authors. She won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction with her debut short story collection -Interpreter of Maladies- (1999), and her first novel -The Namesake- (2003) was adapted into a popular film of the same name by director Mira Nair.


4. Wipro Chairman Azim Premji has been awarded the Asian Business Leaders Award 2013 for his -impressive business credentials- and service to society by London-based Asia House. The award will be presented at a gala ceremony in London on October 14. Past recipients of the honour include Ratan Tata, former Chairman of the Tata Group, and Lord Stephen Green, UK-s Minister of State for Trade and Investment and former Group Chairman of HSBC Holdings.


5. The Supreme Court has slapped contempt notices on two Sahara firms, Sahara India Real Estate Corporation and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation today for not complying with its order of refunding around Rs 19,000 crore to investors through SEBI. The bench also told Sahara group that no further time would be given to the companies and they must not seek any adjournment in the case.


6. A Mumbai court framed Charges against actor Salman Khan for culpable homicide not amounting to murder in a hit-and-run case today. The charge carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in jail. Salman Khan has pleaded "not guilty" to the charge. The actor was exempted from appearance in the trial as he would be out of the country for two months. In September 2002, Salman was allegedly driving a Toyota Land Cruiser when he ran over a group of people sleeping on the pavement outside a bakery in suburban Bandra. One person was killed and four others were injured in the accident.


 


 


25 July


 


26 July


Current Affairs Global - 26 July 2013


1. In order to make sanitation for all a global development priority, the United Nations General Assembly has designated 19th November as World Toilet Day today. Also it urges changes in both behaviour and policy on issues ranging from enhancing water management to ending open-air defecation. As per UN, among the 7 billion people in the world, 2.5 billion do not have access to proper sanitation and around 1.1 billion still defecate in the open


2. Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, who exposed the most extensive US global surveillance operations, was awarded German -Whistleblower Prize- for 2013 yesterday which is worth of USD 3,900. -Mr Snowden has done a great public service by exposing the massive and unsuspecting monitoring and storage of communication data by US and other western intelligence agencies, which cannot be accepted in democratic societies,- Berlin-based whistleblower prize jury said in a statement.


3. Britain's Chris Froome won the 100th edition of the Tour de France. With this, it is Britain's second successive victory in the race - Froome's Team Sky colleague Sir Bradley Wiggins became the first Briton to win it last year.


Current Affairs India - 26 July 2013


1. Kargil Vijay Diwas was observed today (26th July) across India today. Defence Minister AK Antony and the three service chiefs paid homage to Kargil martyrs at Amar Jawan Jyoti, India Gate today. Kargil Vijay Diwas is celebrated on 26th July every year in honour of the Kargil War's Heroes.


2. INSAT 3D, India's advanced and most sophisticated weather satellite, was launched successfully in the early hours of today, 26th July, 2013 by European space consortium Arianespace's Ariane 5 ECA VA214 rocket launched INSAT-3D and Alphasat satellites from Kourou, French Guiana.INSAT-3D had a lift-off mass of 2060kg. INSAT-3D also carried the newly developed 19 channel sounder, the first such payload to be flown on an ISRO satellite mission.


3. Arun Nehru, the cousin of Rajiv Gandhi, passed away in Gurgaon yesterday. He was 69. He was an Indian politician and columnist. He was member of the 9th Lok Sabha from Bilhaur as a Janata Dal leader. Earlier, he was member of the 7th and 8th Lok Sabhas from Rae Bareli.


4. India-s largest listed real estate company, DLF Limited, has announced that it will to sell its 74% stake in a life insurance joint venture with Prudential International Insurance Holdings Ltd (PIIHL) named as DLF Pramerica Life Insurance Co. Ltd to Dewan Housing Finance Corp. Ltd. PIIHL is a unit of US-based Prudential Financial, Inc.


5. In a major reshuffle of its top management, FMCG major Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) has appointed Sanjiv Mehta as its new CEO and Managing Director. Nitin Paranjpe, the current Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of HUL, has been elevated as the President (Home Care), at the parent company Unilever with effect from 1st October 2013. He was the CEO for last 5 years.


6. The sixth Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Awards were presented by Chief Justice of India P Sathasivam today. The awards acknowledged the outstanding contributions of India-s 29 finest journalists. The Express Group instituted the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Awards on memory of its founder Ramnath Goenka.


 


27 July


 


28 July


Current Affairs Global - 28 July 2013


1. World Hepatitis Day is observed across the world today (28th July 2013). The theme for the year 2013 is -This is Hepatitis, Know it, Confront it- which was set with the aim of creating a global awareness about the Hepatitis virus and to encourage its prevention, treatment and diagnosis.


Current Affairs India - 28 July 2013


1. Delhi government is all set to launch food security programme from 20th August 2013. With this, Delhi will be the first state in India to launch Union government-s food security programme. Over 32 lakh identified families will start getting benefit under the scheme from the 1st September 2013.In the first phase, BPL and APL families, Jhugi Jhopadi ration card holders and those under Antodaya ration yojana will be covered.


2. National Research Professor at the National Centre for Biological Sciences and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) Obaid Siddiqi, passed away in a Bangalore hospital yesterday. He was 81. He was honoured with several awards, including Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan, BC Roy Award for Biomedical Research and Firodia Award for Basic Sciences.


Forex Reserves decreased by USD 985.4 million to 279.202 billion


India-s Forex reserves were decreased by USD 985.4 million to 279.202 billion for the week ended 19th July as per the recent weekly data released by RBI.


This decrease was mainly due to decrease in the reserve portion in the Foreign Currency Assets.  The Foreign Currency Assets (FCA) was decreased by USD 999.7 million to 251.136 billion for the same week. However the SDRs (Special Drawing Rights) and Reserve portion with IMF were increased by USD 9.5 million and USD 4.8 million respectively for the same week. Gold values remained unchanged at USD 21.555 billion for the same reporting week.


 


29 July


Current Affairs Global - 29 July 2013


1. The Cambodian People's Party (CPP), led by Prime Minister Hun Sen, won at least 68 seats in the Lower house compared to the 55 seats won by the main opposition. This is a significant decline from the 90 seats held by the ruling party since 2008, ending its two-thirds majority. The current Prime Minister Hun Sen has been in power in Cambodia for nearly three decades (28 years).


2. Lewis Hamilton won the Hungarian Grand Prix from pole position yesterday to clinch his first victory of this season. Kimi Raikkonen, Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber  stood at second, third and fourth respectively in the same race. The next race is the Belgian GP on 25th August.


Current Affairs India - 29 July 2013


1. The Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) has approved the Jet-Etihad proposal today. Now, the matter will go to the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs for final clearance. The proposal involves Etihad buying 24% equity in Jet Airways at a cost of Rs 2,058 crore. This is the largest FDI proposal in the civil aviation sector till now.


The proposal has been approved with conditions. As per the details, the Jet Airways board will have 12 members -- four from Jet, two from Etihad and six independent directors. The Jet Airways board will be the final decision-making body, and all other committees would be advisory in nature.


Ad agencies Publicis and Omnicom announced merger to create world-s biggest ad firm


World-s leading ad agencies, France's Publicis and US firm Omnicom have announced a merger to create the world's biggest advertising company worth of USD 35.1 billion. Post-merger, the new company will be known as -Publicis Omnicom Groupe - and Omnicom chief executive John Wren and Publicis Groupe boss Maurice Levy are to become joint CEOs of the merged entity.


This will be the biggest merger of the advertising sector so far. The firm will be listed in Paris and New York and will employ more than 130,000 people. Publicis Groupe shareholders will receive 1 share of the new Publicis Omnicom Group for each Publicis share they own and a special dividend of 1 euro per share. Omnicom shareholders will receive 0.813 shares of Publicis Omnicom Group for each Omnicom share they own, together with a special dividend of USD 2 per share, plus quarterly dividend payments.


 


 


30 July


Current Affairs Global - 30 July 2013


1. India-born Mamnoon Hussain, a close aide of Prime Minister Nawqaz Sharif, was elected as the 12th President of Pakistan today. He will replace the incumbent President Asif Ali Zardari in September.  Hussain emerged as a clear winner in the one-sided contest with with ex-judge Wajihuddin Ahmad of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf party, state media reported. Born in the historic city of Agra, he along with his family migrated from India during partition in 1947.


2. The International Monetary Fund has released USD 2.29 billion in aid for Greece after completing a review of the country-s performance under the international rescue programme. The latest disbursement means that Greece has received about USD 10.94 billion from the IMF under the bailout coordinated with the European Union and the European Central Bank in March 2012. Greece was first bailed out for 110 billion euro in 2010 but when that failed, got a second rescue worth 130 billion euro plus a private sector debt write-off totalling more than 100 billion euro.


 


Current Affairs India - 30 July 2013


1. The Congress Working Committee, CWC, has unanimously passed a resolution today in favour of creating a separate state of Telengana out of Andhra Pradesh. The CWC has adopted the resolution and asked the Centre to take steps for creating the new State within a definite time frame. As per the proposal, Telengana will be the 29th State of the country from 1st January, 2014 and Hyderabad will be the common capital for both the states for 10 years.


2. The Bombay High Court has held the two-member probe panel set up by the BCCI to look into spot-fixing and betting charges in the IPL tournament as illegal and unconstitutional today. The Court order came just two days after the probe panel submitted its report on July 28, giving a clean chit to BCCI chief, N. Srinivasan, his son-in-law Meiyappan and Rajasthan Royals' co-owner Raj Kundra. It will be a big blow to former BCCI chief, N. Srinivasan who plans to come following the probe panel report.


3. Sarod maestro Amjad Ali Khan was chosen for the 21st Rajiv Gandhi National Sadhbhavna Award for his contribution towards promotion of communal harmony and peace. It will be conferred on Amjad Ali Khan on 20 August 2013, the birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. Rajiv Gandhi National Sadbhavana Award (Rajiv Gandhi National Communal Harmony Award) is an award given for outstanding contribution towards promotion of communal harmony, national integration and peace. The award carries a citation and a cash award of five lakh rupees.


4. Tata tops the list in the first edition of Inter brands Best Indian Brands study with a valuation of USD 10.9 billion, followed by Reliance at USD 6.24 billion and Airtel at USD 6.22 billion.


5. India wins the second edition of the South Asian Football Federation Championship after defeating Nepal 1-0 in the final match played at Dashrath Stadium in Kathmandu. Jerry Lalrimzuala scored the lone goal which proved decisive for India.  Bangladesh won the third place defeating Afghanistan 1-0 in the other match played at Nepal Army grounds today. Fair team play was won by Bhutan.


6. Jagdish Raj, the Bollywood actor who held the Guinness World Record for being the most type-cast actor, passed away on 28 July at Mumbai. He was 85. He held the world record of playing the role of a policeman 144 times on the silver screen.


 


RBI kept key rates, CRR unchanged; lowers GDP forecast for FY-14 to 5.5%


The Reserve Bank of India has kept the key rates and CRR unchanged during its monetary policy review today. The repo rate and reverse repo rate were kept unchanged at 7.25% and 6.25% respectively. During the past one-and-half years, the RBI has cut repo rate by 1.25% to 7.25%. Cash reserve ratio (CRR) and Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR) were kept unchanged at 4% and 23% respectively. Marginal Standing Facility rate and bank rate were kept unchanged at 10.25% as well. This is in line with market expectations though India Inc is not happy with the decision taken by the RBI.


RBI also cut the GDP growth forecast for FY14 to 5.5% from earlier forecast of 5.7% which disappointed the stock market today. RBI Governor Subbarao cited various risks that are likely to hamper economic growth and both domestic and global uncertainty were the main reasons to affect economic recovery.


At the same time, RBI called for urgent policy steps from the government to curtail the current account deficit (CAD) to a sustainable level of 2.5% of GDP. High CAD is affecting the domestic currency badly and it may adversely affect inflation numbers as well.


 


 


31 July


Current Affairs Global - 31 July 2013


1. German engineering giant Siemens AG (SIE) named its Finance Chief Joe Kaeser as chief executive officer to take over from Peter Loescher. This move came after it repeatedly missed profit targets and charges mounted for failed power and train projects. Kaeser will start his new role on 1st August.


2. Euro zone unemployment rate fell for the first time in more than two years in June as the jobless total in the eurozone fell by 24,000 to 19.26 million, the first decrease in the jobless total since April 2011. However, the unemployment rate stayed at a record 12.1% in June. The job market data raises hope about the euro zone economy. The unemployment rate was 26.3% in Spain and 26.9% in Greece but it was significantly lower in Austria (4.6%) and Germany (5.4%).


 


Current Affairs India - 31 July 2013


1. The Indian Government today raised interest subvention to 3% from 2% in engineering, textiles among other sectors in order to boost export amid global slowdown and lower demand in the western markets. Commerce minister Anand Sharma also said that some more measures will be announced to boost exports, targeted to rise to USD 325 billion in 2013-14 from USD 300 billion in the previous year.


2. Metro Man E. Sreedharan has been selected for the prestigious Lokmanya Tilak award for 2013 for his outstanding contribution to society. His name was considered as the architect of the ambitious Delhi metro project, was announced by Deepak Tilak who heads the Lokmanya Tilak Trust. The award comprising a gold medal, a citation and Rs one lakh cash, will be conferred on Sreedharan on August 1, Tilak said.


3. India's Aditya Mehta won gold medal of World Snooker Championship at Colombia today. He defeated China's Liang Wenbo by 3-0 in the final to get the medal.


US economic growth stood at 1.7% in second quarter of 2013


The US economy grew at an annualized rate of 1.7% in the second quarter (April-June) of the current year. The economic growth was faster than expectations and increases optimism about US economy. This growth rate is also higher compared to revised 1.1% growth in the previous quarter.


The increase in GDP growth was due to lower spending cut in the second quarter. The federal government cut spending by only 1.5% in the second quarter compared with a sharp drop of 8.4% in the first quarter. This confirms that US economy is growing at slow but steady speed.