Current Affairs of 1st November 2015

1. Govt sets up 5-member panel to frame new education policy
 The Ministry of Human Resource Development has decided to constitute a drafting committee for framing the new education policy.
The panel is expected to submit the draft policy as soon as possible but not later than 31st December.
Former Cabinet Secretary T.S.R. Subramanian will act as the Chairman of the committee and Shailaja Chandra, former Chief Secretary, NCT of Delhi;  Sewaram Sharma, former Home Secretary, NCT of Delhi; Sudhir Mankad, former Chief Secretary, Gujarat and J S Rajput, former Director, NCERT, will be the four members.
Along with the draft education policy, the Committee will also submit a Framework for Action.
The National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA), New Delhi will act as its Secretariat.

2. Sania, Martina clinch WTA Finals doubles title

Indian tennis ace Sania Mirza and her Swiss partner Martina Hingis lifted their ninth title together this year, beating the Spanish pair of Garbine Muguruza and Carla Suarez Navarro to clinch the WTA Finals women’s doubles trophy.
Sania and Martina, the top seeds, prevailed 6-0 6-3 over their eight-seeded rivals in a lopsided summit clash which lasted little over an hour.
The Indo-Swiss pairing dropped serve only once through the match and broke their opponents five times to wrap up a comprehensive victory.
Sania and Martina are now unbeaten in 22 matches, stretching back six tournaments. In fact, since their last defeat — to Chan Hao-Ching and Chan Yung-Jan in Cincinnati — they have dropped just two sets.
Muguruza and Suarez Navarro — late replacements in the draw after Casey Dellacqua and Yaroslava Shvedova’s withdrawal — were completely outplayed in the match.

3. Facebook to help BSNL set up 100 WiFi hotspots in rural India
Boosting the government’s ambitious ‘Digital India’ drive, social media giant Facebook has come forward to facilitate state-run BSNL in setting up 100 WiFi sites in rural areas of western and southern India.
Facebook will spend Rs. 5 crore per annum for sponsoring these 100 WiFi hotspots in the country.
Facebook has partnered with us to sponsor 100 WiFi hotspots in villages across west and southern India. They will pay Rs. 5 lakh for BSNL bandwidth for each hotspot per annum.
The hotspots are being set up by BSNL selected vendor Quad Zen.
We have already set up 25 hotspots under the agreement. Facebook is only sponsoring them and not taking any revenue share. Quad Zen will set up these hotspots and handle sales.
BSNL has also received interest from Member of Parliaments for setting up WiFi hotspots in villages which they have adopted under Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) to make it a model village by 2016.

4. New Zealand wins 2015 Rugby World Cup
New Zealand has won the 2015 Rugby World Cup for record third time by defeating Australia. In the final match played at Twickenham, England the winning team defeated Australian team by 34-17 score. With this victory, it also became the first nation to retain the Webb Ellis Cup and it was their first victory on the foreign soil.

5. Eminent Archaeologist VN Misra passes away
One of the eminent archaeologists of post-Independent India, Virendra Nath Misra passed away in Pune, Maharashtra. He was 81. He was best known as the doyen of Indian prehistoric archaeology and for his extensive field studies and excavations in Central India and Rajasthan. In these two regions, he had made several significant contributions to the reconstruction of India’s prehistoric past.

6. Punjab to set up bio-ethanol refinery to stop menace of straw burning
Punjab Government has announced to set up bio-ethanol refinery in the state to tackle the menace of wheat and paddy straw burning. In this regard, state government has inked MoU with consortium of Beta Renewables, Novozymes and CVC India Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. for project estimated worth Rs. 950 crore during the Progressive Punjab Investor Summit, 2015.

7. European Parliament gave status of whistle-blower to former NSA contractor Edward Snowden
The European Parliament on 29 October 2015 gave status of whistle-blower and human rights defender to former contractor of NSA Edward Snowden.
A resolution in this regard was approved by the parliament by 285 votes to 281.
The non-binding resolution urged 28 member states of the European Union (EU) to drop any criminal charges against Edward Snowden grant him protection and consequently prevent extradition or rendition by third parties.
The resolution was passed in accordance with a April 2014 resolution of the Committee of Ministers on protection of whistleblowers. The resolution offers legal protection to workers who reveal illegal and unethical practices taking place at workplace.

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