Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Daily GK Update 22nd March 2017: Current Affairs

Daily GK Update 22nd March 2017
1. India ranks 131 in 2016 Human Development Index:
  • India was ranked 131 in the 2016 Human Development Index (HDI) among the 188 countries.  India scored 0.624 and was placed in medium human development category
  • The index was unveiled recently as part of the Human Development Report (HDR) 2016 titled Human Development for Everyone published by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • Top three countries are: Norway (0.949 score), Australia (0.939) and Switzerland (0.939).
  • The HDI is a measure for assessing countries progress in three basic dimensions of human development: a long and healthy life (life expectancy), access to knowledge and access to a decent standard of living.
2. World Water Day observed today:
  • World water day is observed annually on 22nd March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.
  • Today, the union ministry of water Resources Uma Bharti has inaugurated a seminar on waste water -Monitoring and Management in New Delhi.
  • The theme of 2017 for World Water Day is 'Why Wastewater?'.
  • The first International World Water Day, designated by the United Nations, was commemorated in 1993.
3. Bihar Diwas is being celebrated today:
  • Bihar Diwas (105th) is observed every year on 22nd March, marking the formation of the state of Bihar.
  • Three-day celebrations of foundation day of the state have been inaugurated by the Chief Minister of Bihar Nitish Kumar.
  • He has launched the free Wi-Fi in 200 educational institutions in the state.
  • It was on this day when the British carved out the state from Bengal Presidency in 1912.
4. 4 Indian cities among cheapest globally: EIU
  • Four Indian cities are among the cheapest to live in globally, while Singapore (last in the list) has been ranked as the most expensive for the fourth consecutive year, according to a 'Worldwide Cost of Living 2017' report by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
  • Bengaluru (3rd place), Chennai (6th), Mumbai (7th) and New Delhi (10th) have been ranked by EIU among the 10 cheapest cities in the world.
  • Almaty has been ranked as the cheapest city in the world followed by Lagos. 
5. Majuli, India’s first carbon neutral district, as a biodiversity heritage:
  • The chief minister of Assam ‘Sarbananda Sonowal’ has launched initiatives to develop Majuli as India’s first carbon neutral district and as a biodiversity heritage.
  • He also launched the “Forests are Lives” campaign to celebrate the importance of Assam’s rich forest and biodiversity.
  • The Forest Department of the state will also celebrate the international day of forest from next year in every school of the state.
6. ISRO commissions world’s third-largest hypersonic wind tunnel:
  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) created history by commissioning the world’s third-largest hypersonic wind tunnel at Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.  
  • In this regard, ISRO chairman A S Kiran Kumar commissioned two facilities a 1-m Hypersonic Wind Tunnel and a 1-m Shock Tunnel.
7. Maharashtra Govt. makes Aadhaar mandatory for crop insurance schemes:
  • The Maharashtra government has made Aadhaar mandatory to farmers for availing crop insurance schemes from the next Kharif season.
  • Now, the farmers of the state will have to link it with the Aadhaar number before June this year to avail crop insurance schemes.
  • The scheme is applicable to food grain and horticulture sectors.
8. Major Rohit Suri awarded Kirti Chakra:
  • Major Rohit Suri, from the Parachute Regiment who led the army team that carried out a surgical strike in PoK last year, was presented the second highest peacetime gallantry award Kirti Chakra by President Pranab Mukherjee.
  • Corporal Gursevak Singh of Indian Air Force was posthumously conferred the Shaurya Chakra for putting up a valiant fight against terrorists who had attacked the frontline Pathankot air base. 
  • Naib Subedar Vijay Kumar of Indian Army was conferred the Shaurya Chakra.
9. ABB India bags award for restoring 1,035 MW Sharavathi plant in Karnataka:
  • ABB India has restored and modernized the critical 1,035 MW Sharavathi hydropower plant in Karnataka that accounts for 25% of Karnataka Power Corporation’s generation.
  • For restoring the crucial power infrastructure, the ABB has bagged 'the India Smart Grid Foundation (ISGF) innovation award'.
10. Upendra Tripathy appointed as Interim Director General of ISA:
  • Upendra Tripathy (IAS- Karnataka Cadre) has been appointed as the full-time interim Director General (IDG) of the International Solar Alliance (ISA).
  • Earlier, he served the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy as its secretary from 1st April 2014 to 31st October 2016.
  • The International Solar Alliance (ISA) was launched on 30th November, 2015 as a coalition of the solar resource rich countries on the first day of the Paris Climate Conference(CoP21).
11. Samsung Pay launched in India:
  • Samsung Electronics on Wednesday announced the launch of its flagship mobile payments service, Samsung Pay, in India
  • Samsung Pay can be used to make purchases using debit or credit card to make payments.
  • The cashless payment solution also supports mobile wallets like RuPay cards and UPI apps.
12. Madhabi Puri Buch appointed as SEBI whole time member:
  • The government has announced Madhabi Puri Buch as new whole time member of Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
  • She will be in the office for period of three years. She is currently serving in the New Development Bank, Shanghai.
  • This is the first time that a women and a person from private sector has been chosen for a key post with the market regulator.
13. Russia’s VTB bank to shut India office:
  • Russian bank VTB has decided to close its only office in New Delhi, India to cut costs but will continue to work in India, the bank stated.
  • The decision to shut the branch in India was taken as part of a strategy of VTB Group aimed at optimizing costs and will continue to work on the Indian market expanding its cooperation with local partners. 
14. ICC name Ankur Khanna as new Chief Financial Officer:
  • Ankur Khanna has been appointed as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the International Cricket Council (ICC). He will join the ICC by the end of March 2017.
  • Presently, he is serving Air Asia India as the Chief Financial Officer.
  • Prior, Khanna also worked in senior roles at Air France, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and ITC, an associate company of British American Tobacco.

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