1st Raisina Dialogue Inaugurated By Sushma Swaraj In New Delhi
i. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has inaugurated the 1st Raisina Dialogue in New Delhi.
ii. Envisioned as India’s flagship conference of geopolitics and geo-economics, the Raisina Dialogue 2016 is designed to explore prospects and opportunities for Asian integration.
iii. It is a key to not only India’s development but the entire region and the Asian continent.
iv. The conclave has focused on Asia’s physical, economic, human and digital connectivity. Over 450 delegates from around 40 countries are participating in the three-day conference. The delegates also include former president of Sri Lanka Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga and former president of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai.
v. As per officials “the Asian century in effect is really about once again integrating Asia with itself, integrating Asia within itself, and integrating Asia with the world”. The theme of this inaugural edition of the Dialogue is “Connecting Asia” which tries to capture the various facets of these ambitions.
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2. Mukesh Ambani Again Tops 84 Indian Billionaires in Forbes List
i. Mukesh Ambani Reliance Industries chairman again topped 84 Indian billionaires in Forbes 2016 list of the world’s richest people once again headed by Bill Gates with a net worth of $75 billion.
ii. Mukesh Ambani with a net worth of $19.3 billion was ranked 36th among world’s 1,810 billionaires with an aggregate net worth of $6.48 trillion, down from $7.05 trillion last year.
iii. Technology guru Gates, who has topped the list for 17 of the last 22 years was followed by Spanish clothing retailer Amancio Ortega, best known for the Zara fashion chain, with Warren Buffett remaining in the third spot.
iv. United states led with the greatest number of billionaires, with 540, followed by China with 251, Germany with 120, India with 84 and Russia with 77.
v. China had the most of 198 newcomer billionaires, adding 70 to the list. Thirty-three newcomers were from the US, 8 from India and 28 from Germany Notable newcomers included Flipkart cofounders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal (No. 1476) of India.
3. M. S. Swaminathan Research Foundation To Establish A Research Chair In Kalinga Institute Of Social Sciences (KISS)
i. The MS Swaminathan Research Foundation has signed a MOU with Bhubaneswar -based Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) to establish a Research Chair.
ii. The Chair will be named after MS Swaminathan, father of Indian Green Revolution for promoting knowledge and skill for empowerment for less privileged children in India.
iii. This is the first-ever initiative of the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation to establish a Research Chair in any private institute in the country.
iv. The Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) is the largest residential institute for the tribals in the world.
v. It provides free of cost accommodation, education, food, health care from Kindergarten to Post Graduation to more than 25,000 children of whom 12,200 are girls.
4. UltraTech acquired cement units of Jaiprakash Associates
i. Aditya Birla Group firm UltraTech has announced the acquisition of debt-ridden JP Group’s cement plants for Rs 16,500 crore, making it the biggest deal in the sector.
ii. The buyer will pay an additional amount of Rs 470 crore to complete the grinding unit.
iii. In a transaction that will take its cement portfolio to nearly 91 million tonne, UltraTech Cement will acquire 22.4 mt of assets from Jaiprakash Associates.
iv. The deal includes two units in Madhya Pradesh.
v. UltraTech Cement said it entered into a binding Memorandum of Understanding with Jaiprakash Associates Limited for the acquisition of its identified cement plants having total cement capacity of 22.4 MTPA (million tons per annum) situated in Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
5. TCS Recognized As Top Global Employer
i. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), a leading IT services company has been recognized as a Global Top Employer by the Top Employers Institute.
ii. The assessment was done among 1,072 companies worldwide and the TCS become 1st with an exceptional performer across 9 core HR areas including talent strategy, workforce planning, on-boarding, learning and development, performance management and leadership development, among others. These things makes the company one in only eight organizations worldwide to have achieved this status.
iii. This certification is only awarded to the best employers around the world organisations that demonstrate the highest standards of employee offerings.
iv. Others in the list include CJSC Technip, DHL, Dimension data, Saint Gobain, JT International, Mobinil, Mobistar, Orange and Valeo.
v. This year, it was also certified as the Region-wide Top Employer in Europe for the 4th consecutive year. TCS earned the foremost rating in the United Kingdom and Germany, and also received an accreditation in six other countries in Europe – Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the Netherlands.
6. Sanjeev Kapoor joins Vistara as Chief Strategy and Commercial Officer
i. Sanjiv Kapoor has been appointed as the Chief Strategy and Commercial Officer of Vistara Airlines.
ii. Kapoor will be responsible for managing a wide portfolio of Vistaras commercial and planning functions, including strategy development, network planning, pricing and revenue management, sales and distribution, among others.
iii. He will also be responsible for in-flight services and ground operations of the carrier.
iv. Kapoor succeeds Giam Ming Toh, who is returning to Singapore Airlines on completion of his deputation with Vistara.
v. Tata Sons holds a majority 51 per cent stake in Vistara – a joint venture with Singapore Airlines, which holds the remaining 49 per cent. Kapoor joins Vistara with over 19 years of experience in the airline industry, in various leadership and consulting role.
7. Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain Takes Over As Chief Of Staff, Eastern Naval Command
i. Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain took over as the Chief of Staff of the Visakhapatnam.
ii. He succeeds Vice Admiral Bimal Verma who has been transferred as Commander-in-Chief of Andaman & Nicobar Command at Port Blair.
iii. Vice Admiral Jain is an alumnus of the Sainik School (Rewa), National Defence Academy (Pune), the Defence Services Staff College (Wellington, Ooty), the College of Naval Warfare (Mumbai) and the National Defence College (Pretoria, South Africa).
iv. He was commissioned in the Indian Navy on 01 July 1982 and post specialisation in Gunnery and Missile Warfare, he held appointments as Gunnery Officer of missile destroyers, IN Ships Ranvijay and Ranvir.
8. RBI unlocks Rs.40000 crore additional capital for banks
i. At the time when public sector banks are facing pressure on their profitability due to a sharp rise in non-performing assets, which is eroding their capital base.
ii. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) move comes revised norms on capital recognition, making available an additional Rs.40,000 crore to Indian banks, this announcement is a big relief for, mainly, public sector banks.
iii. Finance minister Arun Jaitley announced after his budget speech a capital infusion of Rs. 25,000 crore for the fiscal year starting in April.
iv. The minister did not make any increases to the capital infusion amount that was decided in August 2015.
v. Many public sector banks reported huge losses for the quarter ended December 2015 after the RBI asked lenders to identify several accounts as non-performing. Banks are expected to post weak earnings in the current quarter too.
9. Mrugank Paranjape Appointed As MCX MD
i. Multi Commodity Exchange announced the appointment of Mrugank Paranjape as MD & CEO of the exchange.
ii. He will succeed Manoj Vaish. The exchange has also re designated Parveen Kumar Singhal, the present Joint Managing Director as President & Whole Time Director with effect from April 1. The appointment will be for a period of three years and subject to prior approval from SEBI.
iii. Mr. Mrugank Paranjape was Asia Pacific Head of Trust & Securities Services/Cash Management for Financial Institutions and Regional Head of Securities for The Global Network Banking Division, Deutsche Bank (Malaysia) Berhad since last 14 years. Currently, he is India Head, Deutsche Bank.
iv. Last May, SEBI rejected the exchange’s proposal to appoint Balasubramaniam Venkataramani, Chief Business Officer of BSE as MD & CEO as MCX had not followed proper procedure.
v. The exchange remained without a full-time MD & CEO since May 2014 when Vaish resigned after just three months stint.
10. Scott Kelly, American Astronaut, Returns to Earth After 340 Days in Space
i. NASA(National Aeronautics and Space Administration) astronaut and Expedition 46 Commander Scott Kelly and his Russian counterpart Mikhail Kornienko returned on Earth.
ii. After a historic 340-day mission aboard the International Space Station.
iii. It was a science experiment to study the effects of microgravity on the human body, so that NASA can prepare astronauts for longer flights to Mars and beyond.
iv. Mr. Kelly, who spent the time about 249 miles above the planet aboard the International Space Station, and the Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko landed on Eastern in Kazakhstany.
11. George Kennedy The Oscar Winning Actor Passed Away
i. George Kennedy, who has passed away recently, was one of America’s most recognizable and versatile character actors.
ii. He was 91 year old. He appeared in more than 175 films, ranging from westerns to disaster movies and from thrillers to comedies.
iii. Mr. Kennedy’s the tough guy character won an academy award for his portrayal of a savage chain-gang convict in the 1960s. He had undergone emergency triple bypass surgery in 2002.
iv. His biggest acting achievement came in Cool Hand Luke, a 1967 film about a rebellious war hero played by Paul Newman who is bent on bucking the system as a prisoner on a Southern chain gang. Its theme of rebelling against authority and the establishment helped make it one of the most important films of the tumultuous 1960s.
v. Kennedy played the role of Dragline, the chain-gang boss who goes from Luke’s No 1 nemesis to his biggest disciple as Newman’s character takes on folk hero status among fellow inmates. The movie garnered four Academy Award nominations, and Kennedy was named best supporting actor.
12. Aaron Phangiso Suspended For illegal Bowling Action
i. Aaron Phangiso, the South African left-arm spinner, has been suspended from bowling in domestic cricket with immediate effect after his action was found to be illegal.
ii. Cricket South Africa announced An International Cricket Council (ICC) movement expert found his arm extended beyond the 15 degrees allowed.
ii. Phangiso’s action was reported after he took 2 for 38 for the Highveld Lions in their eight-wicket win against Warriors in the semifinal of South Africa’s domestic Momentum One Day Cup.