Current Affairs of 31 July 2015

1. Govt names Addl Secretary to RBI board in place of Fin Secy
 In an unusual move, the Finance Ministry has nominated Ajay Tyagi, Additional
Secretary in the Department of Economic Affairs to the RBI board in place of Economic Affairs Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi.

According to the convention, the Economic Affairs Secretary besides the Financial Services Secretary is part of the Central Board Directors of RBI.

“In exercise of the power conferred by clause (d) of sub-section (1) of Section 8 of the RBI ACT 1934, the Central Government hereby nominates Ajay Tyagi, Additional Secretary (Investment) Department of Economic Affairs Ministry of Finance, to be director on the Central Board of Directors of RBI with immediate effect until further order vice Rajiv Mehrishi,” a Finance Ministry notification said.
Mehrishi also holds the Finance Secretary’s position in the ministry.
Following this notification on June 22, RBI had a board meeting which would not have been attended by the incumbent Finance Secretary.
The 552nd meeting of the Central Board of Reserve Bank of India was held on July 2 at Chennai.
According to the RBI website, there are 17 board members including the RBI Governor and four Deputy Governors. Rajiv Mehrishi's name is still part of the central board of directors as reflected on the website.

2. RBI decided to issue 10 rupees coins to commemorate International Day of Yoga
The Reserve Bank of India on 30 July 2015 decided to put into circulation 10 rupees coins to commemorate the International Day of Yoga. The coins have been minted by the Government of India.

3. Japan’s Nikkei buys Financial Times in $1.3-bn deal
The two leading financial news operations from Europe and Asia are now together, as Nikkei Japanese media group is going to buy the Financial Times from Britain’s Pearson in a $1.3 billion.
Financial Times acquisition is a triumph for Nikkei as this is the biggest acquisition ever by any Japanese media organisation.
This acquisition has brought an opportunity to Nikkei newspaper to expand its readers outside its home market.
Pearson a 171-year-old international media company sold FT as it wanted to expand its education business. Pearson owned FT for nearly 60 years.
It should be noted that the FT’s acquisition does not include its 50 percent stakes in The Economist magazine and nor its headquarters at London.

4. Film Talvar to be premiered at Toronto International Film Festival
Talvar, an upcoming Bollywood mystery thriller film directed by Meghna Gulzar, will have its international premier at  Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). It has been selected for World Premier in 'Special Presentations' section at the festival that runs from 10 September to 20 September 2015.
Talvar written by Vishal Bhardwaj revolves around the sensational murder of 14-year-old Aarushi Talvar and 45-year-old Hemraj Banjade, a domestic help in Noida, India. It will have lyrics by Gulzar and is shot by Pankaj Kumar of Haider and Ship of Theseus fame.

5. Govt seeks Parliamentary nod for Rs 12,010-cr capital infusion in PSU banks
The Government on Friday sought Parliamentary approval to infuse Rs 12,010 crore in public sector banks. Details about bank wise infusion will be made later.
This is part of the proposal for additional expenditure, better known as Supplementary Demands for Grants, tabled in the Lok Sabha by the Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley.
The proposal involves total additional expenditure of Rs 40,821.88 crore. Out of this, net cash outgo will be Rs 25,495.24 crore, while the remaining Rs 15,325.62 crore will be met through savings.
The proposal also involves about Rs 100-crore equity infusion in MUDRA Bank, while additional Rs 500 crore will be made available for credit guarantee fund for Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana. MUDRA aims to provide credit to very small businesses.
The Government has also made a provision of Rs 800 crore as equity infusion for Air India, while Rs 2,685 crore has been provided for sanitation and drinking water. About Rs 1,000 crore will be made available for Power System Development Fund, while Rs 1,153 crore will for Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Ltd.
The additional capital this year will be allocated through three tranches to meet three different objectives. In the first tranche, about 40 per cent of this amount will be given to those banks which require support, and every single PSB will be brought to the level of at least 7.5 per cent by the financial year 2016.
In the second tranche, 40 per cent capital will be allocated to the top six big banks viz. SBI, BoB, BoI, PNB, Canara Bank, and IDBI Bank to strengthen them to play a vital role in the economy.
The remaining 20 per cent will be allocated in the third tranche. Banks will get this amount based on their performance during the three quarters in the current year and will be judged on the basis of certain performance. This will incentivise them to improve their performance in the current year.

6. SALt, a lamp that runs eight hours on water and salt, developed
A start-up in Philippines in July 2015 developed a lamp named SALt (Sustainable Alternative Lighting) that runs on a glass of water and two tablespoons of salt. The lamp is named after the company SALt that was founded by Aisa Mijeno and Raphael Mijeno
This cost effective lamp burns for eight hours at a time to lighten a room and will also be able to generate enough energy to charge a smart-phone through a USB cable.
The lamp can also be lit by using ocean water and would be of great help for people living along the coastline.

7. India’s 10 companies in Forbes Asia Fabulous 50 list
Forbes Asia Fabulous 50 list released on the eve of its 10th Anniversary has listed 10 Indian companies which stands second after China in terms of number of companies listed.
This year’s list was also dominated by Chinese companies, over 25 Chinese companies made to the list against 16 last year.
China’s Tencent continued to be at the top on chart, which now worth $ 176.5 bn. South Korea has third highest number of companies with four firms after China and India, whereas Malaysia, Singapore, and Philippines have two firms each and Japan, Indonesia have one firm each on the list.
Indian companies that made to the list are: HDFC Bank, Tata Consultancy Services, HCL Technologies, Aurobindo Pharma, Lupin, Sun Pharma Industries, Motherson Sumi Systems, Tech Mahindra, Tata Motors and Titan.
Among the fifty companies HDFC Bank was named as Asia Fab 50’s “brightest star” as it has made to the list nine times that is more than any other company in the list.

8. BHEL signs three MoU in Kazakhstan for power projects
Bharat Heavy Electronics Limited (BHEL) has signed three strategic agreements with Kazakhstan companies in order to deepen its roots in Central Asia.
MoU Signed:
MoU with JSC Samruk Energy:
BHEL will work with JSU on projects of mutual interest; JSU is the national power utility of Kazakhstan having a major share in the Kazakh power sector.
MoU with KUS:
BHEL will work with KUS in the energy sector for design and construction of power plants. KUS is one of the largest utility companies in the Kazakh power sector specifically work in power generation; transmission and sale of heat and electricity. It is owned by the $ 9 billion assets Ordabassy Group.
MoU with Kaznex Invest:
BHEL will work with Kaznex Invest for co-operation in executing projects in Kazakhstan.
Kaznex Invest works under the Ministry of Investments and Development of Kazakhstan, it is national export and investment agency of Kazakhstan.

9. Ravichandran Ashwin presented with Arjuna Award on Friday
India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was today presented the Arjuna Award, which was conferred on him last year, by the Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal here.
Ashwin was not present during the Award Ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhawan on August 29, 2014 as he was a part of the India ODI team, which was touring England at that time.
The 28-year-old Ashwin, who has taken 124 wickets in 25 Tests, 139 in 99 ODIs and 26 wickets in 25 T20 internationals, was expressed his delight after receiving the prestigious award.

10. India to celebrate ‘Handloom Day’ on August 7
A new ‘India Handloom’ brand will be launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi next week in Chennai to help the handloom sector better position its items in the domestic and international markets.
The government has decided to declare August 7 - the day of launch of the handloom brand - as ‘National Handloom Day’, Minister of State for textiles Santosh Gangwar said at a press conference on Friday.

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