Following are June 4th 2015 Current Affairs
World Bank offers $400 million loan for TN urban development project
- The government of India and of Tamil Nadu has inked a deal with the World Bank for a $400 million loan for an sustainable urban development project in Tamil Nadu. $400 million out of the total project cost of $ 600 million would be financed by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), one of the arms of World Bank.
- The project’s objective is to improve urban services in urban local bodies (ULBs) by improving the urban services, including water, sewerage, municipal solid waste, urban transportation, sewerage management and storm water drainage and creating of a reserve fund to provide credit to the municipal bonds and other market based loans.
- The loan agreement was signed by Raj Kumar, Joint Secretary, in the Finance Ministry.
World Bank approves $ 250 million loan for Jhelum and Tawi Flood Recovery Project in J&K
- World Bank today has approved a $250 million loan for Jhelum and Tawi Flood Recovery Project for reconstruction of flood-affected public infrastructure in Jammu & Kashmir, will also aim to strengthen the capacity of state government to respond and better manage natural disasters in future.
- The loan which has a maturity of 25 years, including a five-year grace period, will be funded by World Bank’s arm - International Development Association (IDA). The recovery project will focus on 20 districts - Anantnag, Baramula, Budgam, Bandipora, Ganderbal, Kupwara, Kulgam, Pulwama, Shopian, Srinagar, Jammu, Samba, Kathua, Reasi, Doda, Kishtwar, Ramban, Poonch, Rajauri and Udhampur.
- Heavy and continuous rains in September 2014 had caused Jhelum, Chenab and Tawi rivers, their tributaries and many other streams to flood, affecting the area badly.
- Onno Ruhl : World Bank, Country Director in India.
Maharashtra government for first time invokes MCOCA against ration mafia
- Maharashtra government has become the first state govt. to cite rigorous provisions of the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) against five persons involved in the “ration mafia” which means pilferage of food grains meant for public distribution for illegal purposes, from Nashik.
- The five accused, identified as Sampat Namdeo Ghorpade (50), Vishwas Namdeo Ghorpade (46), Arun Namdeo Ghorpade (44), Magan Ratan Pawar (43) and Ramesh Somnath Patankar (45) - all residents of Nashik, were booked by Wadivarhe police in Igatpuri taluka, for previous cases and one was recently found involved in misappropriation of food grains in Sinnar taluka of Nashik district, where 280 sacks of rice from government godowns were sold directly to rice mills.
- Generally, underworld criminals, terrorists, slum-lords and bootleggers are booked under MCOCA but this is the first time that something as widespread as the “Ration Mafia” has been booked under this.
- Food and civil supplies minister of Maharashtra : Girish Bapat .
Northern Railway rolled out India’s first rail coach lit by solar panels
- The Delhi division of the Northern Railway on 3 June 2015 rolled out a non-AC coach lit by solar panels mounted on its roof.
- The eco-friendly solar panels will save fossil fuel as it needs reduced external charging of battery, thus reducing carbon foot print. The panels also require less maintenance in comparison to existing equipments.
- This is the first time in the history of Indian Railways, that a solar photovoltaic system has been used for power requirements of light and fan in a broad gauge coach.
- The coach, on an experimental basis, was attached to a high speed Self Propelled-Accident Relief Unit (SPART) that travelled from Delhi Cantonment to New Delhi railway station.
2015 Framework for India-USA defence relationship signed by India and USA
India and USA signed 2015 Framework for the India-US Defence Relationship by Manohar Parrikar of India and Ashton Carter , US Secretary of Defence. Dr Carter who was on three day official trip to India, signed the framework which forecasts joint development and production of defence equipment and technology.
Salient features of the 2015 India-USA Defence Framework
• It stresses on building of previous defence framework and successes to help in bilateral and strategic partnership for the next ten years.
• Avenues for high level strategic discussions, continued exchanges between armed forces of both the nations and strengthening of defence capabilities.
• Transformative nature of Defence Technology and Trade Initiative DTTI is recognised .
Project agreements - For joint development of Mobile Electric Hybrid Power Sources and Next Generation Protective Ensembles, have also been finalised between India and USA .
• Both the leaders also agreed to quicken the discussions to take forward cooperation on jet engines, aircraft carrier designs and construction etc.
• Co-development and co-production projects that would give substantial opportunities for American Defence Industries to build Defence partnership with Indian industries including in manufacturing under the ” Make in India” initiative.
• Discussions to enhance strategic and defence interest also took place when Mr Carter met PM Modi , External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and National Security Advisor Ajith Doval .
• Carters trip comes as USA re-balances itself to AsiaPacific.
• In March, Pentagon officials termed China’s ongoing territorial disputes with Brunei,Malaysia,Taiwan, Vietnam and Philippines over South China sea as provocative.
Suresh Kalmadi honored with Asian Athletics Association President’s Award
- Suresh Kalmadi, former member of the Indian National Congress (INC), former Member of Parliament of India, senior sports administrator and former president of the Asian Athletics Association (AAA)-a post he held for 13 years (2000 - 2013)-has been conferred the Asian Athletics Association President’s Award for his initiatives on the development of athletics in the Asian continent.
- Adille Sumariwala, President, Athletics Federation of India, received the award on behalf of Mr. Kalmadi from current AAA President Dahlan Al-Hamad of Qatar, UAE, at the function held last night ahead of the start of Asian Athletics Championships. Al-Hamad succeeded Kalmadi as the new president after defeating him in the AAA presidential elections held in Pune in 2013.
Syed Asif Ibrahim appointed as PM’s Special Envoy on Countering Terrorism and Extremism
- Syed Asif Ibrahim, former Intelligence Bureau Chief has been appointed as the PM’s ‘Special Envoy on Countering Terrorism and Extremism’.
- He will be reporting to NSA Ajit Doval and work from the National Security Council Secretariat. He will have the charter to coordinate with governments in West Asia, Afghanistan-Pakistan and South East Asia.
- He has negotiated with the top leadership in Saudi Arabia and Malaysia on terror cooperation in the past. Ibrahim had retired as the I.B. Chief in 2014.
Infosys completes acquisition of digital solutions Skava
- IT giant Infosys has completed the acquisition of Kallidus Inc. (working under the name of “Skava” ), a digital experience solutions provider, including mobile commerce and in-store shopping experiences to large retail clients, in an all-cash deal which included retention bonus and deferred component.
- The acquisition is in accordance with the agreement announced concluded on April 24, 2015 and as advised to Infosys by Deutsche Bank.
- Skava, founded by Arish Ali and Sudha K.V. , provides a host of solutions which include developing and hosting mobile websites, apps and other digital shopping experiences across desktop, tablet, mobile, in-store and emerging channels.
India Jumps up six spots to 141 in new FIFA Rankings
- India has climbed up six places to the 141st position from 147th, in the latest rankings released by FIFA.
- India is at the 22nd position among the Asian countries. Iran (41) leads the pack, followed by Japan (52) and South Korea (58).
- FIFA Champions Germany continued to lead the list, while Belgium jumped to the second place (highest position ever) followed by Argentina. Five-time world champions Brazil is fifth, a spot brhind Colombia, and is followed by the Netherlands, Portugal (seventh), Uruguay (eighth), and France (ninth).
Inderjeet Singh won gold in shotput at 21st Asian Athletics Championship
- 27-year-old left-handed shot-putter from Haryana, Inderjeet Singh bagged a gold medal in men’s shot put event on the first day of the 21st Asian Athletics Championships being held in Wuahan, China. He made a new championship record of 20.41m in his fourth attempt.
- Chang Ming-Huang of Chinese Taipei came second with a throw of 19.56m, while Tian Zizhong of China won the bronze with a throw of 19.25m. This was the first medal for India in the tournament so far.
- He had finished fourth in the last edition held in Pune in 2013. He is a bronze medal winner in the 2014 Asian Games, held in Incheon and a silver medal holder in World University Games, 2013. He has already qualified for next year’s Rio Olympics.
Poovamma, Joseph win silver medals in Asian Athletics Championships
- Machettira Raju Poovamma and Liksy Joseph secured silver medals for India on the second day of the 21st Asian Athletics Championships, going on in Wuhan, China.
- Poovamma finished behind China’s Yang Huizhen (52.37) in women’s 400m finals taking 53.07 seconds and was followed by Kazakhstan’s Anastasiya Kudinova (53.41). Liksy won the second position in 800m race, taking a time of 2:13.44, while former Asian junior champion Purnima Hembram got the bronze.
- Among others, G Lakshmanan got a bronze medal in men’s 5000m race. The men’s 4x100m relay team finished sixth, while the women’s relay team finished fourth.
De Villiers crowned South African cricketer of the year
- AB de Villiers won as many as five awards, including the South African Cricketer of the Year for a second consecutive time at a gala function, hosted by Cricket South Africa (CSA) in Johannesburg.
- The 27-year-old batsman was named the ODI Cricketer of the Year, Cricketers’ Cricketer of the Year, SA Fan’s Cricketer of the Year and also got the ‘So Good Award’ for scoring the fastest century in the history of ODI cricket against the West Indies in December 2014.
- Morne van Wyk won the T20 Cricketer of the Year, Dale Steyn received the Delivery of the Year and Rilee Rossouw was named the SA Newcomer of the Year.