Current Affairs: Daily GK Update 14th July 2017

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1. DIPP to set up India’s first TISC in Punjab

i. The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce & Industry has signed an Institutional agreement with the Punjab State Council of Science and Technology in New Delhi to establish India’s first Technology and Innovation Support Center (TISC) at Patent Information Centre, Punjab.
ii. The objective of the TISC is to stimulate a dynamic, vibrant and balanced Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) system in India to foster creativity and innovation.
iii. Services offered by TISCs include:
  1. Access to online patent and non-patent (scientific and technical) resources and IP-related publications;
  2. Assistance in searching and retrieving technology information;
  3. Training in database search;
  4. On-demand searches (novelty, state-of-the-art and infringement);
  5. Monitoring technology and competitors;
  6. Basic information on industrial property laws, management and strategy, and technology commercialization and marketing.
Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman is the Minister of State (I/C) for Commerce & Industry.

2. Railways Ministry launches RailCloud Project, NIVARAN-Grievance Portal and CTSE Scheme

i. Minister of Railways Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu launched the following Initiatives:-
1. RailCloud
RailCloud is another step towards Digitization of Railways. Rail Cloud works on popular Cloud Computing system. It aims to improve customer satisfaction, improve revenue and effective, efficient and safe operations. 
‘NIVARAN-Grievance Portal’ is the first IT application to be launched on the RailCloud. It is the platform for resolution of service related grievances of serving and former railway employees.
3. Cashless treatment Scheme in Emergency (CTSE)
With an aim to provide immediate care to its retired employees in Golden Hour, the Railway Board has rolled out a Cashless treatment Scheme in Emergency (CTSE) in empanelled hospitals for retired employees and their dependent family members.

Static Takeaways from Above News-
  • John Mathai was India's first Railway Minister.

3. Maharashtra, first state to have law against social boycott

i. Maharashtra has become the first state to make social boycott a crime after President Pranab Mukherjee cleared the legislation. The Maharashtra Prohibition of People from Social Boycott (Prevention Prohibition and Redressal) Act prescribes a maximum punishment of three years in jail and a fine of Rs1lakh.
ii. It aims to prevent atrocities carried out by extra-judicial courts and caste panchayats. The Act also provides for compensation to victims. The fines imposed on violators will be used to compensate them.

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • Devendra Fadnavis is the CM of Maharashtra.
  • C Vidyasagar Rao is the Governor of Maharashtra.

4. Health Ministry of India launches the National Strategic Plan for Malaria Elimination 2017-22

i. Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare launched the National Strategic Plan for Malaria Elimination (2017-22). The Strategic Plan gives year wise elimination targets in various parts of the country depending upon the endemicity of malaria in the next 5 years.
ii. The strategies involve strengthening malaria surveillance, establishing a mechanism for early detection and prevention of outbreaks of malaria, effective indoor residual spray and augmenting the manpower and capacities for effective implementation for the next five years.

Static Takeaways from Above News-
  • National Framework for Malaria Elimination (NFME) was launched in 2016 with the aim of eliminating malaria by 2030.

5. 22nd World Petroleum Congress (WPC) International Conference held in Istanbul, Turkey

i. The 22nd World Petroleum Congress (WPC) International Conference was held recently in Istanbul, Turkey. Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan visited Istanbul to represent India at the Conference.
ii. The theme for 22nd World Petroleum Congress was ‘Bridges To Our Energy Future’. WPC was first organized in year 1993. Currently, it is being held at the interval of three years. 

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • 21st WPC was held in Moscow, Russia. 
  • The capital of Turkey is Ankara. 
  • The currency of Turkey is Turkish lira.

6. SBI to slash NEFT, RTGS charges by up to 75%

i. To encourage more customers to transact digitally, State Bank of India will slash charges for National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) and Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) transactions by up to 75 per cent with effect from July 15.
ii. The country's largest lender has also waived charges for fund transfer of up to Rs 1,000 done through Immediate Payment Service (IMPS).

Banking Takeaways from Above News-
  • The minimum amount to be remitted through RTGS is Rs2 lakh. 
  • Headquarter of SBI is in Mumbai.

7. BRPL, TERI in MoU to explore opportunities in solar rooftops, e-vehicles

i. BSES Rajdhani Power Ltd (BRPL) and The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) have entered into a partnership to explore collaboration opportunities for solar rooftop, electric vehicles, energy storage systems, energy efficiency and smart grid technologies.
ii. The MoU has been signed for two years. The collaboration will help in research and explore newer collaboration opportunities in the domain of emerging technologies.

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • The Chairman of TERI is Shri Ashok Chawla.
  • Shri Lalit Jalan is the Chairman of BSES.

8. Tata Sons appoints Aarthi Subramanian as Chief Digital Officer

i. Tata Sons, the holding company of the Tata Group, has appointed Aarthi Subramanian as the conglomerate's chief digital officer. Subramanian, who is an executive director at TCS, will join Tata Sons in August.
ii. Subramanian is the second TCSer whom Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran has picked up to be a part of his core team after Suprakash Mukhopadhyay. 

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • N Chandrasekaran is present Chairman of Tata Global Beverages Limited.
  • TCS executive Ramanathan Ramanan is the head of Atal Mission under NITI Aayog.

9. Google acquires Bangalore-based artificial intelligence firm Halli Labs

i. American technology giant Google has acquired Bangalore-based artificial intelligence (AI) firm Halli Labs for an undisclosed sum.
ii. The firm becomes the latest AI start up to be snapped by a technology giant after a spate of similar acquisitions by firms such as Microsoft, Facebook, Apple among others.

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • Sundar Pichai is the CEO of Google.
  • Alphabet Inc. is the parent company of Google.

10. Indian scientists discover supercluster of galaxies 'Saraswati'

i. For the first time in the country, a team of Indian scientists has claimed to have discovered an "extremely large supercluster of galaxies", Saraswati, in the universe.
ii. The supercluster was discovered by Shishir Sankhyayan, a PhD student at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Pune, Pratik Dabhade, IUCAA research fellow, Joe Jacob of the Newman College, Kerala, and Prakash Sarkar of the National Institute of Technology, Jamshedpur.

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • The Milky Way is the galaxy that contains our Solar System.

11. YES Bank gets $150 mn from OPIC to fund SME lending

i. Private sector YES Bank has received $150 million funding from the US government and Wells Fargo to increase lending to support women entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized enterprises in India. 
ii. This is the third round of funding to the bank as part of an arrangement with the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) -the US government development finance institution and Wells Fargo.
iii. Under the agreement, OPIC will provide $ 75 million in financing and up to $ 75 million in syndicated financing jointly arranged by Wells Fargo Bank to Yes Bank.

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • Rana Kapoor is the Managing Director and CEO of YES Bank.
  • It was founded in 2004.
  • Yes Bank is Headquartered in Mumbai.

12. China’s Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo dies at 61

i. China’s most famous political prisoner, the Nobel laureate and democracy icon Liu Xiaobo, has died at the age of 61. Liu was awarded the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize for his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China.
ii. The Chinese intellectual and activist is the first Nobel Peace Prize winner to die in custody since German pacifist Carl von Ossietzky, the 1935 recipient, who died under surveillance after years confined to Nazi concentration camps.

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • He was born on 8 December 1955 in Jilin Province in northeast China.
  • On 13 July 2017, he died of multiple organ failures.

13. President awards IIMB

i. President Pranab Mukherjee has awarded IIM Bangalore (IIMB) for making management education accessible to all through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).
ii. IIMB is the national coordinator for management education on the government’s Swayam platform and has completed five MOOCs on the platform so far.

Important Takeaways from Above News-
  • Union HRD Minister is Mr. Prakash Javadekar.


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