Current Affairs of 20 October 2015

1. PM Narendra Modi inaugurated IDFC Bank
Prime Minister Narendra Modi  inaugurated the IDFC Bank in New Delhi.
IDFC Bank Limited, which started its operations on 1 October 2015, is an Indian Banking company with headquarters in Mumbai that forms a part of IDFC, an integrated infrastructure finance company.
IDFC Bank was granted a universal banking license in July 2015 by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
IDFC was incorporated on 30 January 1997. It founded a non-operative financial holding company (NOFHC) in 2014 to manage its five subsidiaries IDFC Bank, IDFC MF, IDFC Alternatives, IDFC IDF & IDFC Securities to conform with RBI guidelines.

2. Maharashtra Government declared 14708 villages as drought-hit
Government of Maharashtra  declared 14708 out of 40053 villages as drought-hit where the monsoon rainfall was deficient by over 50 percent.
As a relief measure to farmers in the drought-hit villages, the government announced several steps including waiver of land revenue and electricity charges among others.
This is the second straight year of drought for Maharashtra where the south-west monsoon was deficient by 27 percent.
Also, Maharashtra also became the second state in the country as Karnataka declared 27 out of 30 districts as drought-hit in August 2015.
The drought-hit villages in Maharashtra are spread across 20 of the 35 districts in the state, including all eight districts of the Marathwada region.
The drought-hit districts are: Gadchiroli, Nagpur, Akola, Yavatmal, Aurangabad, Parbhani, Latur, Nanded, Beed, Jalna, Osmanabad, Hingoli, Pune, Satara, Sangli, Nashik, Dhule, Nandurbar, Jalgaon and Ahmednagar.

3. World Statistics Day observed across the world
The World Statistics Day was observed across the world on 20 October 2015 with the theme Better Data, Better Lives. This year celebrations mark the second observance of the World Statistics Day.
The theme emphasizes the critical role of high-quality official statistical information in analysis and informed policy decision-making in support of sustainable development. The theme also reflects the importance of sustainable national statistical capacity to produce reliable and timely statistics and indicators measuring a country’s progress.
The year 2015 marks the bicentenary of the birth of George Boole, whose work on the application of the principles of logic as a form of algebra underpins modern computer science.

4. Veteran Kannada film-maker KSL Swamy passed away
Veteran filmmaker Kikkeri Shamanna Lakshminarasimha Swamy, popularly known as KSL Swamy, died on 20 October 2015 due to breathing complications in Bengaluru. He was 77.
The multifaceted personality was also a playback singer, producer and actor.
He started his career in film industry by assisting G. V. Iyer and M. R. Vittal. He debuted as an independent film director with the 1966 film, Thoogudeepa.

5. NATO launches biggest Trident Juncture Military Exercise in Italy
North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has launched Trident Juncture Military Exercise in Italy to test the alliance’s ability to respond to new security threats. It will also demonstrate NATO’s capability to deal with conventional military engagements to more subtle hybrid warfare techniques and propaganda. It is the biggest military exercise conducted by alliance in past 13 years as it has mobilized around 36,000 soldiers, sailors and airmen from more than 30 countries of NATO.

6. Virender Sehwag retires from International cricket
The flamboyant Virender Sehwag, one of the world’s most destructive batsmen to have played the game, today announced his retirement from international cricket and the Indian Premier League, bringing an end to an illustrious career spanning over a decade.
Sehwag had already hinted about his imminent retirement at a function 
 in Dubai yesterday and chose his 37th birthday today to put an end to his amazing career and said he was grateful to have done things his way.
In a glorious international career spanning over 12 years, Sehwag played 104 Tests scoring 8586 runs at an impressive average of 49.34, hitting 23 centuries and 32 half-centuries.
He is the only triple centurion in Tests for India having scored a career-best knock of 319 against Pakistan at Multan, which also is an Indian record. He is also one of those rare batsmen to have scored two triple tons with his next one (309) coming against South Africa.
In 251 ODIs, he accumulated 8273 runs at an average of 35.05 and scored 15 hundreds apart from hitting 38 fifties. In 19 Twenty20 Internationals, he managed 394 runs with two half-centuries.
He has been a part of two World Cup winning teams under Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s leadership — 2007 World T20 in South Africa and the ICC ODI World Cup in India.
The decision to retire comes after Sehwag signed up to play in the next year’s Masters Champions League 2020, where only retired cricketers can play. Sehwag was unveiled at the launch ceremony of the veterans 2020 league in Dubai.

7. S&P retains India’s rating at ‘BBB-’ with stable outlook
Global ratings agency Standard and Poor’s (S&P)  affirmed India’s long-term sovereign credit rating at ‘BBB-’ and short-term rating at ‘A-3’ with a stable outlook. But it warned the ratings could be downgraded if growth is lower than expected due to stalled reforms or if inflation does not remain under control.
The ratings agency, however maintained that it does not expect to revise the country’s sovereign ratings either this fiscal or the next.
An upward revision in the ratings could take place if reforms by the government help to improve the fiscal position and the net government debt falls below 6 per cent of the GDP.
S&P said improvements in policy making have raised the prospects of the economic and fiscal performance and forecast GDP growth at 7.4 per cent in 2015 and 8.2 per cent next fiscal.



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