Current Affairs June 20, 2017: INDIA’S MARS ORBITER COMPLETES 1000 DAYS IN ORBIT
TAJ PALACE BECOMES FIRST INDIAN BUILDING TO GET TRADEMARK:
The iconic Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai has just got itself trademarked. This makes the 114-year-old building the first in the country to get such a registration. The hotel, which has been a defining structure of Mumbai’s skyline, has joined the elite and small club of trademarked properties in the world.
Other trademarked building are, the Empire State Building in New York, the Eiffel Tower in Paris and Sydney Opera House.
Usually, logos, brand names, combination of colours, numerals and even sounds are trademarked but the registration of an architectural design has never been attempted since the Trademark Act came into force in 1999.
SHRI PIYUSH GOYAL LAUNCHED ENERGY CONSERVATION BUILDING CODE 2017:
Shri Piyush Goyal, Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal, New and Renewable Energy and Mines launched the Energy Conservation Building Code 2017 (ECBC 2017). It was developed by Ministry of Power and Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE).
ECBC 2017 prescribes the energy performance standards for new commercial buildings to be constructed across India and adoption of ECBC could lead to 30%-50% energy savings by commercial buildings.
The code aims to optimise energy savings with the comfort levels for occupants, and prefers life-cycle cost effectiveness to achieve energy neutrality in commercial buildings.
MINISTRY OF CULTURE LAUNCHED ‘NATIONAL MISSION ON CULTURAL MAPPING OF INDIA’:
Dr Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Culture & Tourism launched the implementation of the National Mission on Cultural Mapping of India at Goverdhan Block, Mathura District of Uttar Pradesh.
The national mission on cultural mapping was launched in a day long, Block level mega talent hunt programme (Sanskritik Pratibha Khoj Samaroh). This Mission is part of the ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ umbrella.
Ministry of Culture launched it in the year of commemoration of the birth centenary of Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyay from Mathura.
AMITABH BACHCHAN TO PROMOTE GST:
The government has chosen Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan as the face of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), which is set to be implemented from July 1.
In a bid to promote the sweeping tax reform, the Central Board of Excise and Customs has decided to make the actor its brand ambassador. Ace badminton star PV Sindhu was previously the GST ambassador.
INDIA’S MARS ORBITER COMPLETES 1000 DAYS IN ORBIT:
India’s celebrated Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) completes 1000 earth days in orbit on Monday June 19, 2017 which is more than 5 times the number of days it was designated to last. It has outlived its original lifespan but still in good health.
During these 1000 days MOM has orbited Mars 388 times and has relayed back enormous data including over 715 images.
MOM was launched on November 5, 2013 by PSLV-25 and it entered the Martian orbit on September 24, 2014.
The Mars Orbiter has five scientific instruments – Lyman Alpha Photometer (LAP), Methane Sensor for Mars (MSM), Mars Exospheric Neutral Composition Analyser (MENCA), Mars Colour Camera (MCC) and Thermal Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (TIS).
ISRO Chairman: A S Kiran Kumar
UNION MINISTER DR. HARSH VARDHAN LAUNCHED A MOBILE APP “CELEBRATING YOGA”:
Ahead of International Yoga Day, Union Science and Technology minister Harsh Vardhan launched a mobile application on which people can share their experience about participating in yoga activities.
It will help in capturing, both mass events organised in public places, schools and office complexes across the country on the occasion of International Yoga Day on June 21 and after that. The app has been connected to Google Map where shared information can be seen by the user.
The information will subsequently be visible on the website of the Department of Science and Technology (DST). The DST also runs a programme called ‘Science and Technology of Yoga and Meditation (SATYAM)’. The app will also give information to the users about the studies conducted on yoga under the SATYAM programme.
PUNJAB WAIVES FARM LOAN:
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh announced complete waiver of crop loans of up to 2 lakh for small and marginal farmers with up to five-acre holdings, and a flat 2 lakh relief for all other marginal farmers, irrespective of their loan amount.
The move would benefit 10.25 lakh farmers, including 8.75 lakh farmers who own up to five acres.
- Capital: Chandigarh
- Governor: P. Singh Badnore
- Chief Minister: Captain Amarinder Singh
8,387 CHILDREN CREATE LONGEST’ YOGA CHAIN:
As many as 8,387 schoolchildren formed the “longest yoga chain” in front of the iconic Mysuru palace eyeing the Guinness World Records.
The previous record is held by 3,849 students of Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu, who created a yoga chain in 2014.
- Capital: Bengaluru
- Chief Minister: Siddaramaiah
- Governor: Vajubhai Vala
HEPTULLA UNVEILS ‘WALL OF HEROES’ AT JAMIA:
Newly appointed Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia, Najma A. Heptulla, unveiled a ‘Wall of War Heroes’ that displays the portraits of 21 martyrs awarded the Param Vir Chakra.
A National Flag hoisted on a 102-foot pole was also inaugurated at the campus. A ‘Wall of Founders and Contributors’ to the university was also unveiled.
SC ASKS NEWSPAPERS TO IMPLEMENT MAJITHIA WAGE BOARD AWARD IN FULL:
The Supreme Court has asked the news papers to implementation the Majithia Wage Board award on pay structures of journalists and non- journalists in full.
A bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and Navin Sinha that the part implementation and non-implementation of the Majithia Wage Board award by some newspaper establishments would not amount to wilful default attracting contempt.
TAMIL NADU ASSEMBLY ADOPTS GST BILL:
The Tamil Nadu Assembly adopted the GST bill amid a walkout by the opposition DMK, which wanted it to be referred to a select committee and taken up later for discussion.
The Tamil Nadu Goods and Services Tax Bill 2017 was later passed by a voice vote despite the absence of the DMK.
RISHI KAPOOR TO OPEN 8TH JAGRAN FILM FESTIVAL IN DELHI:
Veteran actor Rishi Kapoor will open the 8th edition of the Jagran Film Festival on July 1. Beginning with New Delhi, the festival will travel to 16 other cities including Kanpur, Lucknow, Allahabad, Varanasi, Patna, Bhopal, Ranchi, Indore, Ludhiana and Dehradun before culminating in Mumbai with the award ceremony in September.
INDIA RATIFIES UNITED NATIONS TIR CONVENTION:
India became the 71st country to ratify the United Nations TIR (Transports Internationaux Routiers) Convention, a move that will help boost trade through smoother movement of goods across territories.
The ratification is a part of India’s multi-modal transport strategy that aims to integrate the economy with global and regional production networks through better connectivity.
CHINA PLANS TO SEND MINI-ECOSYSTEMS TO MOON:
In a first, China is planning to send mini-ecosystems containing potato seeds and silkworm eggs to the Moon next year. In an attempt to study how the organisms develop on the lunar surface.
The 3-kilogramme mini-ecosystem developed by research teams led by Chongqing University in China will be sent to the Moon by the Chang’e 4 scheduled to launch in 2018.
- Currency: Renminbi
- Capital: Beijing
- Prime Minister: Li Keqiang
- President: Xi Jinping
FRENCH PRESIDENT REAPPOINTS EDOUARD PHILIPPE AS PM AFTER LEGISLATIVE VOTE:
French President Emmanuel Macron has re-appointed Edouard Philippe as prime minister after the weekend’s legislative run-off vote and asked him to form the next government.
- French President :Emmanuel Macron
- Currencies: Euro, CFP franc
- Capital: Paris
BANKING & BUSINESS
BANKBAZAAR.COM OPENS OFFICE IN MALAYSIA:
Online financial services marketplace BankBazaar started operations in Malaysia, strengthening its presence in South East Asia.
Further, to scale and steer its international operations, BankBazaar has appointed former Visa employee Vipin Kalra to lead the business growth internationally.
- Currency: Malaysian ringgit
- Capital: Kuala Lumpur
- Prime Minister: Najib Razak
LOCKHEED MARTIN SIGNS PACT WITH TATA TO MAKE F-16 PLANES IN INDIA:
The defence arm of the Tata Group has signed an agreement with American firm Lockheed Martin to produce and export new generation F-16 fighter aircraft.
The deal was signed at the Paris Air Show and Lockheed and Tata said that moving the production base to India would still retain jobs in the United States.
AU BANK IPO OPENS ON JUNE 28:
AU Small Finance Bank will come up with an initial public offering (IPO) of 5.34 crore equity shares in the price band of between 355-358 a share to raise a little more than 1,900 crore at the higher end of the band the issue opens on 28 June and closes on 30 June.
AU Small Finance bank:
JSPL SECURES COAL LINKAGE FOR FIVE-YEAR TERM:
Jindal Steel and Power Ltd (JSPL) announced that it has secured coal linkage in the recently-concluded auctions for the captive power sub-sector.
The coal linkages secured for 5-year duration, will provide steady supply of fuel to captive power plants run by the company for its steel-making operations.
The Captive Power Plants (CPPs) of the company are located at Raigarh and Dongamahuah (Raigarh district) in Chhattisgarh.
EAST HOPE GROUP SIGNED MOU WITH ADANI GROUP TO INVEST $300 MILLION:
Adani Group has signed an MoU with one of China’s largest private companies “East Hope Group” to invest $300 million in a manufacturing unit of an Indian port.
The memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between Adani and East Hope Group proposes to set up manufacturing units in Mundra special economic zone in Gujarat to produce solar power generation equipment, chemicals, aluminium and animal feed.
The MoU was signed between Amit Uplenchar, President of Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone and Meng Changjun, President of East Hope Group (Investment) in the presence of Consul General Prakash Gupta.
ANTI-PROFITEERING PANEL TO LEVY PENALTY:
A five-member anti-profiteering authority will be set up to decide on levying penalty if businesses do not pass on the benefit of price reduction to consumers under the goods and services tax regime.
The GST Council chaired by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and comprising state finance ministers as members approved the anti-profiteering rules and panel.
PAYTM PAYMENTS BANK SET TO JOIN UPI PLATFORM BY AUGUST:
Paytm will soon launch its payments bank on the unified payment interface. The launch will enable an easier transaction process for its customers and is reported to happen by August this year.
Rewind Paytm Payment Bank:
The Paytm Payments bank was introduced last month. In the first year alone, it targets to open 31 branches (First Physical Branch in Noida) and 3,000 customer service points in a bid to attract 500 million customers by 2020. Customers who open an account with Paytm Payments bank are allowed to deposit sums up to Rs 1 lakh.
THE HINDU GROUP WINS CII AWARD:
Kasturi & Sons Ltd., owners of The Hindu Group of publications, received the CII Customer Obsession Award 2016 for active customer engagement in the services sector among large business organisation.
SHASHI SHANKER TO BE NEXT ONGC CHIEF:
Shashi Shanker will be the next chairman and managing director of India’s biggest oil and gas producer, ONGC. Government headhunter, Public Enterprise Selection Board (PESB), selected Mr. Shanker to head Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) from October 1.
PEREZ TO REMAIN AS REAL PRESIDENT UNTIL 2021:
Florentino Perez will remain as president of Real Madrid until 2021 after no other candidates ran against him, the Spanish champion announced. It will be the third term for the 70-year-old construction magnate who has spent 15 years at the helm of Europe’s.
INDIA RE-NOMINATES JUSTICE DALVEER BHANDARI TO ICJ:
India has re-nominated Justice Dalveer Bhandari as its candidate for another term as judge at the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
Justice Bhandari was elected in April 2012 during simultaneous balloting in both the General Assembly and the Security Council to a seat on the ICJ. His current term runs through February next year.
India filed Justice Bhandari’s re-nomination with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, ahead of the July 3rd deadline.The ICJ elections will be held in November and, he will serve a term of nine years.
IRAN CLAIMS FREESTYLE WRESTLING TITLE IN ASIAN CHAMPIONSHIP:
Iranian freestyle wrestlers produced an emphatic performance to finish on top at the Junior Asian Wrestling Championship held in Taichung City of Taiwan.
The Iranian team won three gold medals, two silvers and two bronzes, claiming the title with 69 points. Uzbekistan finished second with 67 points and Kazakhstan third with 57 points.
INDIA BAG 13 MEDALS AT JUNIOR ASIAN WRESTLING CHAMPIONSHIPS:
India won 13 medals consist of 2 Gold, 3 Silver and 8 Bronze medals in the 2017 Junior Asian Championships held in Taiwan.
The medals winners for India are as follows:
- 51 Kg category (Women) —Pooja Gehlot
- 60 Kg free-style category (Men) — Sharvan
- 44 Kg category (Women) — Sonu
- 84 Kg free-style category (Men) — Deepak
- 120 Kg Greco-Roman category (Men) — Satish
- 59 Kg category (Women) —Manju
- 63 Kg category (Women) —Reshma Mane
- 72 Kg category (Women) —Pooja
- 50 Kg Greco-Roman category (Men) —Manish
- 74 Kg Greco-Roman category (Men) —Saajan
- 84 Kg Greco-Roman category (Men) —Sunil
- 66 Kg free-style category (Men) —Karan
WORLD TEAM CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP: TANIA SACHDEV GUIDES INDIA TO WIN OVER USA:
International Master Tania Sachdev crashed through the defences of US champion Sabina Foisor to guide the Indian women team to a victory in the second round of world women’s team chess championship.
World Team Chess Championship: Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia
INDIAN WUSHU TEAM BAGS SIX MEDALS IN BRICS GAMES:
India won six medals in the Wushu competition of the first ever BRICS Games, which concluded in Guangzhou, China.
The medals haul comprised two each in gold, silver and bronze. M. Gyandas and Anjul Namdev won one gold each. The two silver medals came through Bidheswari Devi and Toshibala while L. Sanatgombhi Chanu and Sajan Lama settled for bronze in the Wushu competition.
SRK, GMR TO OWN TEAMS IN SOUTH AFRICA’S T20 LEAGUE:
Shah Rukh Khan and GMR have acquired teams in the T20 Global League recently launched by Cricket South Africa (CSA). They are also promoters of franchises in the Indian Premier League (IPL) since its inception 10 years back.
SRK will own the franchise from Cape Town, team named as Cape Town Knight Riders. Johannesburg will be the hometown for the GMR-promoted team.
SRK co-owns the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) franchise and GMR owns the Delhi Daredevils franchise in the IPL.
SARFRAZ AHMED NAMED CAPTAIN OF ICC TEAM OF CHAMPIONS TROPHY:
Virat Kohli along with three Indians were named in the ICC Team of the Champions Trophy 2017, with Pakistan’s Sarfraz Ahmed named its captain.
India opener Shikhar Dhawan and Pakistan’s Hassan Ali had already won the Golden Bat and Gold Ball trophies for finishing as the most successful batsman and bowler, respectively. Bhuvneshwar Kumar also secured a position in the list.
HISTORY EVENT OF THE DAY
JUNE 20: WORLD REFUGEE DAY
On World Refugee Day, held every year on June 20th, we commemorate the strength, courage and perseverance of millions of refugees. This year, World Refugee Day also marks a key moment for the public to show support for families forced to flee.
SCIENTIST WHO LED THERMONUCLEAR EXPERIMENTS INDIA DIES AT 69:
Professor P K Kaw, a globally-acclaimed plasma physicist who spearheaded India’s efforts to produce energy through thermonuclear fusion, died in Ahmedabad. He was 69.