1. Hindi Diwas being observed today
i. Hindi Diwas is being observed all over the country on Saturday as President Pranab Mukherjee gave away Official Language Awards for outstanding contributions made towards promotion of Hindi language.
ii. Hindi was adopted as a language for official transaction by the constituent assembly on 14th September 1949.
iii. Since then the nation celebrates Hindi Diwas on the 14th of September every year to underline its significance.
iv. The Hindi language is one of the oldest languages and derives much of its academic vocabulary from the Sanskrit language.
v. It is third largest language in the world and also spoken in Mauritius, Surinam, Trinidad as one of the main language.
2. Modi named BJP's PM candidate
i. Narendra Modi, strong but controversial Gujarat Chief Minister, was on Friday named BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate for the 2014 Lok Sabha polls despite stiff opposition from party patriarch L K Advani.
ii. The announcement was made by BJP chief Rajnath Singh after the meeting which was attended by Murli Manohar Joshi and Sushma Swaraj, who too were said to be opposed to Modi's projection at this juncture but finally toed the majority line.
iii. Accepting the party decision, Modi gave a slogan "nayi soch, nayi ummeed" (new thinking, new hope) and said the BJP will go the 2014 polls with the plank of good governance and development while fighting against corruption and price rise.
iv. He said the country is going through a crisis and BJP would require blessings of people from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and Attock to Cuttack so that this situation ends.
v. Thanking party leaders and NDA allies for their support, the three-time Gujarat Chief Minister said will work tirelessly to ensure that BJP wins the 2014 elections.
vi. Wishing to rise to the people's expectations, Modi expressed confidence that the people of the country will also repose faith in his leadership and the "new hope" it has provided.
3. IIP up by 2.6%, Retail inflation eases to 9.52%
i. The industrial output for July grew by 2.6 percent over the corresponding month of the previous year, government data showed on Thursday; The factory output, measured in terms of Index of Industrial Production (IIP), however, contracted 2.2 percent in June.
ii. The three sectors that constitute the index are mining, manufacturing and electricity. The indices of industrial production for the mining, manufacturing and electricity sectors for the month of July 2013 stood at 117.0, 182.7 and 164.5, respectively.
iii. The cumulative growth for the April-July period this fiscal over the corresponding period of the previous year is a contraction by 0.2 percent.
iv. However, there was no reprieve in vegetable prices as they increased by 26.48 per cent as against inflation of 16.4 per cent in July. Though there was softening in the prices of fruits in August month-on-month.
4. RBI offers banks emergency 2-day funding window
i. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has decided to offer two-day funds to banks through the marginal standing facility (MSF).
ii. The MSF window will be open on Saturday between 5 p.m. and 5.30 p.m. Funds will be repayable on Monday, i.e. on September 16.
iii. The RBI has decided to offer this emergency funding window in view of the current market conditions, a release said on Saturday.
iv. Banks had been forced to borrow funds at a higher rate in the inter-bank market earlier in the day due to outflows to corporate advance taxes, payable by Sunday.
5. US -Russia reach agreement on Syria weapons
i. US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Saturday said they have reached an agreement on a framework for securing Syria's chemical weapons after the third day of intense negotiations.
ii. They say some elements of the deal include a timetable and how Syria must comply and that if Syria fails, they will seek a Security Council resolution that could authorise military action.
iii. At a news conference in Geneva today, Kerry said the pair and their teams of experts had reached "a shared assessment" of the existing stockpile and that Syria must destroy all of its weapons.
iv. The negotiations between the United States and Russia on securing Syria's chemical weapons also are considered key to a resumption of peace talks to end the over two-year Syrian civil war.
6. Govt to infuse Rs 700 cr capital in Exim Bank
i. The government approved the proposal of Rs 700 crore capital infusion in Export-Import Bank of India to support future growth of the lender.
ii. The fund infusion during 2013-14 will ensure compliance to the regulatory norms on capital adequacy, cater to the credit needs of productive sectors of economy as well as to withstand impact of stress in the economy, an official statement said after the Cabinet meeting in New Delhi.
iii. This will also boost the confidence of exporters, it said, adding, the infusion of Rs 700 crore in the equity capital would enable the bank to raise higher amount of borrowings and thereby, support Indian exporters to secure large overseas projects through on-lending.
iv. It will also help the bank to grow its loans and advances portfolio at 14 per cent which will be below the targeted rate of 19 per cent as per the medium-term business strategy (MTBS) of the bank.
v. The bank's aggregate resource raising by means of borrowings is subject to RBI prescribed ceiling of 10 times of the bank's net-owned funds.
vi. As a result, the bank's ability to extend financial support to Indian exporters for securing and executing large-sized projects overseas is constrained, it noted.
NOTE: The Exim Bank was set up as a corporation in 1982 under the Export Import Bank of India Act, 1981 for providing financial assistance to exporters and importers and for functioning as principal financial institution.
7. Japan launches new, cheaper rocket
i. Japan successfully launched a new rocket Saturday that it hopes will be a cheaper and more efficient way of sending satellites into space.
ii. The three-stage Epsilon lifted off from a space centre on Japan’s southern main island of Kyushu, following a two-week postponement.
iii. The Epsilon is the first new rocket design for Japan since the H2A was introduced in 2001. The H2A remains Japan’s primary rocket but officials hope the Epsilon will lead to improvements in the more costly H2A program. Japan hopes to be more competitive in the international rocket—launching business.
iv. The Epsilon rocket, which uses a solid-fuel propellant, is meant to expand the scope of space missions Japan hopes to perform. It also streamlines the launch process.
v. JAXA says the rocket’s extensive use of computer technology means monitoring work that once required a full-staff control room can be done essentially on a single laptop.
8. China launches first ever deep UV laser device
i. The Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) has launched a deep ultraviolet (DUV) solid-state laser device, making the country first-ever in the world to possess such technology.
ii. CAS President Bai Chunli said that the successful testing of the device suggests the academy’s dedication to major innovation and breakthrough in seeking development.
iii. The device marks the world’s first-ever output of 1,064-nanometer’s 6-harmonic frequency multiplication, shortening the diode-pumped solid-state laser (DPL)’s wavelength to 177.3nm.
iv. A KBBF prism coupling device-based DPL source features a smaller size, higher energy resolution and higher photon influx density.
9. M.K. Goel appointed PFC Chairman
i. The Government has appointed M.K. Goel, who is also the Director (Commercial), as the Chairman and Managing Director of Power Finance Corporation Ltd (PFC).
ii. This is after the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh headed Appointments Committee of the Cabinet did not give its go-ahead for extension of the tenure of Satnam Singh, whose term got over on July 31.
iii. He started his tenure as Chairman and Managing Director of PFC on August 1, 2008.
iv. Goel holds a Bachelor's Degree in Technology specialising in Electrical Engineering from Kanpur University.
10. Woody Allen to be honoured at Golden Globes next year
i. Hollywood writer-director-actor Woody Allen will be honoured with the Cecil B DeMille Award at the 71st Annual Golden Globe Awards to be held in January next year.
ii. Allen, 77, has written and directed more than 45 films to date, including “Annie Hall”, “Hannah and Her Sisters”, “Match Point”, “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” and “Midnight in Paris”, which won a Golden Globe and an Academy Award for its screenplay last year, reported Deadline.
iii. His contributions to filmmaking have been phenomenal and he truly is an international treasure,” Theo Kingma, President of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), said in a statement.
iv. Produced by Dick Clark Productions in association with the HFPA, the Golden Globe Awards are viewed in more than 160 countries worldwide and are one of the few awards ceremonies to include both motion picture and television achievements.
11. ADB funds to flow into Agartala water pipelines
i. A project with funds provided by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) would overhaul the entire 53-year-old water supply system in Tripura capital Agartala, officials said here on Saturday.
ii. "The ADB has recently sanctioned the Rs.130 crore project to replace the 408-km water supply pipelines, commissioned in 1960," Tripura's Urban Development Secretary Ashutosh Jindal told reporters.
iii. The 142-year-old Agartala Municipal Council, which will implement the ADB project, is in the process of becoming a corporation.
iv. The ADB-assisted North Eastern Region Urban Development Programme will be implemented in Shillong (Meghalaya), Aizawl (Mizoram), Kohima (Nagaland) and Gangtok (Sikkim) besides Agartala.
v. With a population of little over four lakh, capital Agartala was founded in 1838 by then king Maharaja Krishna Kishore Manikya (1830-49). Tripura was a princely state until its accession to India in October 1949.
12. Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor project launched in Madhya Pradesh
i. Union Minister for Industry and Commerce Anand Sharma has launched the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor project in Madhya Pradesh.
ii. At a function held in capital Bhopal, he also unveiled the foundation stone of National Institute of Design (NID).
iii. The Centre is creating opportunities by launching projects like Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor and establishing institutes like NID.
iv. He said that 13 new towns will be developed in the country under Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor project.
v. The Vikram Udyogpuri project in MP will create more than 80 thousand employment opportunities.