Current Affairs of 22 November 2015

1. Railway Ministry inaugurates landmark Silchar-Lumding broad gauge rail line in Assam
Union Railways Ministry has inaugurated the landmark Silchar-Lumding broad gauge rail line in Assam. It was inaugurated by Union Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu by flagging off a passenger train from New Delhi via video-conference. 
Silchar-Lumding broad gauge rail line brings Assam’s underdeveloped but strategically important Barak Valley on the broad gauge map. The broad gauge line is also a milestone for connectivity in the northeast region and one of the largest gauge conversion projects of Indian Railways. The line has 75 major bridges and 340 minor bridges along the track. It passes through 21 tunnels. The entire project cost was around 3, 500 crore rupees. It would play an important role in accelerating development in Barak Valley of Assam and other Northeastern states like Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram as it would act as lifeline.

2. Pankaj Advani wins 2015 IBSF World Snooker Championship
Ace Indian cueist Pankaj Advani won the 2015 IBSF World Snooker Championship. In the final match played at Hurghada (Egypt), he defeated his Chinese opponent Zhua Xintong by 8-6 score in the best-of-15 final. He had entered the finals of the Championship after defeating Alex Borg of Malta by 6-0 score. With this victory, Pankaj Advani has won the World Snooker Championship for record 15 times. He also became the first person in history of Snooker to take the short (6-Red) and the long snooker format in the same calender year. Earlier in September 2015, he had won the 2015 IBSF World Billiards Championship. Presently he is ranked world number 1 in 6-red snooker and World Team Billiards.

3. India test-fires indigenously developed interceptor missile
As part of efforts to develop a full fledged multi-layer Ballistic Missile Defence system, India today test-fired its indigenously developed supersonic interceptor missile, capable of destroying any incoming ballistic missile, from a test range off Odisha coast.
The interceptor, known as Advanced Air Defence (AAD) missile, was engaged against an electronically prepared target which simulated the trajectory of a hostile ballistic missile.
After getting signals from tracking radars, the interceptor, positioned at Abdul Kalam Island (Wheeler Island), roared through its trajectory at around 0946 hrs to destroy the incoming missile mid—air, in an endo-atmospheric altitude.

4. Axis Bank enters Bangladesh
Extending its overseas footprint, Axis Bank today opened a representative office in Dhaka, capital city of Bangladesh.
Indo-Bangladesh trade is growing and opening office in Dhaka would help in leveraging the opportunity.
The bank aims to leverage the growing economic integration between the two countries by actively facilitating trade transactions, both inbound as well as outbound. The bank will also contribute towards employment generation, both directly and indirectly in the country.
Axis Bank has already established its presence through branches in Singapore, Hong Kong, DIFC—Dubai, Colombo and Shanghai, with representative offices at Dubai and Abu Dhabi and a wholly owned subsidiary in the UK.
Total overseas assets of the Axis Bank stood at USD 7.51 billion, as on September 30, 2015.

5. ‘India ranks 4th among world’s most vacation-deprived nations’
India is the fourth most vacation-deprived nation globally, with 65 per cent saying they feel very or somewhat vacation-deprived, according to a survey.
About 65 per cent of Indians feel they feel very or somewhat vacation-deprived, and 20 per cent said they are very vacation-deprived, full service online travel site Expedia’s ’2015 Vacation Deprivation’ survey has revealed.
UAE topped the list of most vacation-deprived countries in 2015 (76 per cent), followed by Malaysia (73 per cent) and Singapore (71 per cent).
If they had more vacation days, most Indians (67 per cent) would travel to new places (rather than favourite or usual ones), it revealed.
The annual 2015 Vacation Deprivation survey is about vacation habits across multiple countries and continents.
It was conducted on behalf of Expedia by Northstar, a globally—integrated strategic insights consulting firm.
This survey was conducted online from October 6—22, 2015 across 26 countries of North America, Europe, South America and Asia Pacific among 9,273 employed adults aged 18 years and older.
Globally, Indians are the most likely (61 per cent) to associate vacationing a great deal with their overall happiness, followed by Thailand (56 per cent) and UAE (55 per cent), the survey revealed.

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