Current Affairs of 10 August 2015

1. Union Government launched School Nursery Yojana to bring students closer to nature
Union Government  launched the School Nursery Yojana, an initiative to bring students closer to nature. The Yojana seeks to engage class VI to IX in raising of saplings in nurseries created in schools.
The Yojana was launched by Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar in New Delhi. The underlying theme of the Yojana is to plant a tree for sustainable future and to make the nation clean and green.
Urging every student to plant a tree each, Javadekar said that every school must earmark space to prepare a small nursery where the saplings could be planted.
The Minister also presented a sapling and a packet of seeds to students from each school for planting in their school. He exhorted the students to take the grown sapling planted by them along with their annual results to their homes.

About School Nursery Yojana
• The Yojana in its first phase would cover 1000 schools and would be extended to 5000 schools in 2016 and 10000 schools the following year.
• Under the Yojana, students will grow saplings as part of practical exercise for biology classes and extra-curriculum activities.
• The schools will have eco clubs and school principals will maintain the nursery for at least five years.
• Each school will initially receive first time financial grant of 25000 rupees for creation of the nursery with essential facilities.
• The state forest departments will guide and provide technical support to schools under the scheme.

2. Raghavendra Gadagkar awarded with Germany's Cross of Order of the Merit
Indian sociobiologist Raghavendra Gadagkar was  awarded with the Germany's highest civilian honour Cross of Order of the Merit at the German Consulate in Bengaluru.
He was bestowed with the honour for his contribution in the field of behavioural ecology and sociobiology and for strengthening research corporation between India and Germany.
Currently, Gadagkar is a professor at the Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science (IISc). He is also the president of the Indian National Science Academy and has published more than 270 research papers and two books. 

3. Xiaomi ties up with Foxconn to set up facility in Andhra Pradesh through ‘Make in India’ intiative
China-based Smartphone maker Xiaomi Inc has tied up with Taiwan-based Foxconn to set first Assembly line in Andhra Pradesh under ‘Make in India’ initiative. These two Smartphone manufacturer giants has forayed together into Indian electronics market to roll out Xiaomi’s first locally made Smartphone, the Redmi2 Prime as it seeks to expand its market share in India. The size of the investment made in setting up the assembly line was not disclosed.

4. India’s social security pact with Canada comes into force
The social security pact between India and Canada which was approved by Union Cabinet in 2013 comes into force after two years of long waiting. According to the pact the employees posted by Indian entities in Canada are not required to contribute towards Canada’s social security schemes for period of 60 months and similarly the Canadian employees posted in India would enjoy the same benefit. The employees on both the countries will be able to enjoy this benefit only when they produce a certificate of coverage that specifies that they are contributing towards social security schemes such as PF and pension in their home country. This pact was sign to enable Indian as well as Canadian employees to avoid double social security contribution and to enhance competitiveness of their services and products. Government has authorised Employment Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) to implement social security agreements in India and to issue certificate of coverage to the employees posted by Indian entities to Canada.

5. China’s Phicomm to invest $1 billion to set up India units
Phicomm, a Shanghai-based smartphone maker has announced to invest around 6400 crore rupees in India by 2017. The company has decided to set up five business units in phased manner which includes units of – Mobile phones, Cloud services, Enterprise, SOHO- Small Office Home Office networking products and Intelligent Cities in India. Accordingly the company would set up an R&D unit in Gurgaon or Bengaluru, local brownfield assembly unit and contract manufacturing units in India. By October 2015, Company plans to launch its SOHO products such as routers in which it leads in China and aims to sell 1,00,000 Smart phones by the end of the year.

6. Telecom Minister launches mobile app ‘Disha’ to aid digital literacy in Bihar
On 10 August Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has launched a new mobile app ‘Disha’ to aid digital literacy in Bihar. The app was launched in Bihar that aims to help people learn about computers and Internet through self learning modules. The app envisages offering digital literacy to tribal and Dalit women in the State which is free and available on Google app store. Telecom ministry also launched “Disha handbook” that has pictographic lessons on computers operations. This initiative was taken by Ministry to spread out digital literacy in women from tribal and Dalit background in Bihar. To promote digital literacy government has initiated training program under “Digital Saksharta Abhiyan” in all states.

7. Goa Tourism Minister D Parulekar conferred with PATWA 2015 award
Goa Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar has been conferred with the Pacific Area Travel Writers Association (PATWA) and Safari India South Asia Travel Award 2015. He was bestowed with this award in the Best Tourism Minister category. With this he became first Goan tourism minister to win this prestigious award.

8. Indian Army Tops Popularity Charts on Facebook
Leaving a host of foreign government organisations behind, including the CIA, FBI, NASA and even the Pakistani military, the Indian army has once again topped the popularity charts on social networking site Facebook.
For the second time in as many months, the Indian Army's Facebook page has topped the People Talking About That (PTAT) ranking for Facebook pages under government category.
PTAT ranking is based on the analysis of the number of people talking about or on a particular page. And it is not just the Facebook page that is doing well.
The official website of the Indian Army gets as many as 25 lakh hits every week. The army first entered Facebook on June 1, 2013 and has since then garnered 2.9 million likes.
Interestingly, on Facebook, both India and Pakistan are at war, having blocked each other's accounts through Geo location.
This means that a person from Pakistan cannot access Indian army's Facebook page and vice versa.

9. Eminent Kannada poet and freedom fighter Kayyara Kinhanna Rai passed away
Eminent Kannada poet and freedom fighter Kayyara Kinhanna Rai passed away  at Badiyadkka in Kasaragod district of Kerala. He was 101. He was an author, poet, journalist and Indian independence activist.
He was forefront in the movement of merging the Kannada-speaking region of the Chandragiri river (Kasaragod district) with Karnataka in order to fulfill its linguistic and development aspirations after the 1957 States Re-organisation. For this cause, he had founded Kasaragod Vileenekarana Kriya Samiti.

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