1. World Hepatitis Day being observed today
i. World Hepatitis Day is being observed today to raise global awareness of hepatitis and encourage prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
ii. The theme for this year's global campaign is ‘Elimination’. 2016 is a pivotal year for viral hepatitis. The goal is to eliminate hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030.
iii. The World Hepatitis Day is one of eight official global public health campaigns marked by the WHO along with World Health Day, World Blood Donor Day, World Immunization Week, World Tuberculosis Day, World No Tobacco Day, World Malaria Day and World AIDS Day.
2. RBI imposes Rs. 27 crore penalty on 13 banks
i. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has imposed 27 crore rupees penalty on 13 public and private sector banks for violations of Foreign Exchange Management (FEMA) Act (Anti-money laundering) and lapses in Know your customer (KYC) rules.
ii. The matter relates to irregularities on the basis of inputs received from a public sector bank, RBI had undertaken a scrutiny on advance import remittances in 21 banks in October and November last year. The scrutiny examined the alleged irregularities in opening and monitoring of accounts including violations under FEMA provisions.
iii. The banks include Bank of Baroda for Rs 5 crore, Punjab National Bank, and Syndicate Bank have been fined Rs 3 crore each. UCO Bank, HDFC Bank, Allahabad Bank, Canara Bank and IndusInd Bank have all been fined Rs 2 crore each. While the regulator did not impose any fine on SBI, ICICI Bank, Axis Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Union Bank of India, among others, it advised these banks to ensure strict compliance of KYC (know your customer) requirements and FEMA provisions on an ongoing basis.
3. Lok Sabha passes an amendment to Lokpal Act
i. The Lok Sabha has cleared an amendment to the Lokpal Act giving an indefinite extension to the deadline for assets and liabilities' disclosure by central government employees and management personnel of NGOs.
ii. A Parliamentary Standing Committee will examine the Act's clause which requires disclosure by such public servants receiving foreign donations over rs. 10 lakh or government aid over rs. 1 crore.
4. Union Cabinet increases limit for foreign investment in Stock Exchanges from 5% to 15%
i. The Union Cabinet has given its approval for raising foreign shareholding limit from current 5% to 15% in Indian Stock Exchanges.
ii. The decision brings the investment limit of foreign entities at par with that of domestic institutions. This enhanced limit is for a stock exchange, depository, banking company, insurance company and commodity derivative exchange.
iii. Additionally, the Union Cabinet also gave its approval for foreign portfolio investors to acquire shares through initial allotment, besides secondary market, in the stock exchanges.
5. Union Cabinet approves Bilateral Investment Treaty between India and Cambodia
i. The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) between India and Cambodia to boost trade and business.
ii. The Treaty seeks to promote and protect investments in either country with the objective of increasing bilateral investment flows. It also seeks to encourage each country to create favorable conditions (climate) for investors of the other country to make investments in its territory and also to admit investments in accordance with its laws.
iii. This Treaty is the first Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) signed between both countries in accordance with the text of the Indian Model BIT which was approved by the Union Cabinet in December 2015.
6. Union Cabinet approves setting up of new AIIMS in Bhatinda
i. The Union Cabinet has approved the establishment of a new AIIMS at Bhatinda, Punjab under the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY).
ii. The new AIIMS at Bhatinda will provide super specialty health care to the population while creating a large pool of doctors and other health workers in this region.
iii. Besides, the institute will also conduct research on prevalent regional diseases and other health issues and provide for better control and cure of such diseases.
7. Two Ministers inducted in Uttarakhand Cabinet
i. In today's Uttarakhand cabinet expansion, two Ministers were inducted into the State Cabinet.
ii. The new Ministers are Nav Prabhat and Rajender Bhandari. Both the MLAs are from Garhwal region.
iii. Governor Dr. KK Paul has administered them the oath of office and secrecy to the Ministers at Raj Bhavan.
8. Bengaluru to host International Transgender Arts Fest
i. The International Transgender Arts Festival, a performing arts festival for transgenders, is being organized at the National Gallery for Modern Arts in Bengaluru from July 29 to July 31.
ii. The festival, which is being referred to as "India’s first ever international performing arts festival by artistes from the transgender community", aims to showcase the talent of people from the community.
9. India signs $1 billion deal with the US for procuring four Poseidon-8I aircraft
i. India has signed a 1 billion dollar deal with US defense and aerospace major Boeing for procuring four long-range maritime surveillance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft, Poseidon-8I.
ii. The four new P-8I aircraft, with the first to be delivered in 50 months, will join the first eight such aircraft inducted by the Navy from May 2013 to October 2015 under a $2.1 billion deal inked in 2009.
iii. The contract was inked during the visit of the US Under Secretary for Defence on Acquisition Frank Kendall.
10. SBI Launches Debit Card-Less Instant Money Transfer Facility
i. The India's largest public sector bank, State Bank of India has launched a payment system at its ATMs which will allow the account holders to transfer the money by using the mobile phone number as an identifier.
ii. This payment facility system works on instant money transfer (IMT) platform which will enable a payment of up to Rs 10,000 from any SBI bank account and the recipient of this payment can withdraw funds instantly from an IMT-enabled ATM without using a debit card.
iii. The IMT is a unique payment system launched by Eempays Payment Systems Pvt Ltd.
11. East Bengal to honour Milkha Singh with Bharat Gaurav award
i. Kolkata's football giants club East Bengal has announced that this year’s Bharat Gaurav award (Pride of India) will be conferred on legendary athlete Milkha Singh.
ii. He will be honoured with the prestigious award on the East Bengal Foundation Day which occurs on 1st of August. Along with the award, a cheque of 2 lakh rupees will also be presented to him.
iii. Apart from Mr. Singh, a special awards along with a cash prize of 1 lakh rupees each will be given to East Bengal players Shyam Thapa and Shyamal Ghosh. While the trophy for the best footballer of the year will be given to South Korean midfielder Do Dong Hyun who will also receive Rs. 50,000. During the occasion, Veteran sports reporter Debashish Dutta and photo journalist Rony Roy will be receiving awards too for their contribution over the years.
12. Sunil Kant Munjal to Step Down as joint MD from Hero Moto Corp
i. Sunil Kant Munjal, joint managing director at Hero MotoCorp and Chairman of Hero Corporate Services will step down from his position next month on August 16, 2016, to ‘pursue new business interests’.
ii. He is the brother of Pawan Munjal, the chairman, managing director and chief executive officer of the company and the youngest son of Brijmohan Lall Munjal.
iii. However, he will continue to work the best interest of all stakeholders of Hero MotoCorp, including shareholders, employees, suppliers and business associates.
13. The European Union appoints chief Brexit negotiator
i. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has appointed Michel Barnier, a former EU Commissioner for internal markets, to lead negotiations with Britain to leave the European Union.
ii. Barnier will take up his post on October 1.
iii. Michel Barnier is a French Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) politician and Vice President of the European People's Party (EPP).
14. Noted Sorghum expert NGP Rao passed away
i. Noted agricultural scientist Neelamraju Ganga Prasada Rao has passed away in Hyderabad following a brief illness. He was 89 years old.
ii. He was well-known for basic and applied research in breeding and agronomy of several dryland crops especially towards sorghum improvement, hence also earned the title of ‘Father of Hybrid Sorghum’ in India.
iii. Mr. NGP Rao was born in Korisapadu, Prakasam district (AP), and has about 200 research publications in reputed national and international journals.
15. Eminent writer and social activist Mahasweta Devi has passed away
i. Eminent writer and social activist Mahasweta Devi has passed away at a city nursing home in Kolkata following a prolonged illness. She was 90 years old.
ii. She is the Ramon Magsaysay winner.
iii. The writer was also honoured with the Jnanpith Award in 1996