• The government of India (GOI) has revised the e-tourist visa (e-TV)
fee in four slabs of zero, $25, $48 and $60. The revision of visa fee
has been done on the principle of reciprocity. The bank charges have
also been reduced from us $ 2 to 2.5 % of the e-TV fee. There is no
bank charge for zero visa fees and the new rates will come into effect
from November 3, 2015. The scheme is completely online. Out of 113
countries included in e-tourist visa scheme, 5 counties are covered
under the $60 slab viz. Us, UK, Russia, Ukraine and Mozambique. The
rate of $48 has been fixed for 86 countries viz. Australia, brazil,
china, France, Germany, Grenada, Hungary, Jordan, Palestine, Vietnam,
etc. The $25 fee has been fixed for 3 countries viz. Japan, Singapore
and Sri Lanka, while zero visa fees apply to 19 countries viz.
Argentina, cook islands, Fiji, Jamaica, Mauritius, Seychelles,
• The Delhi metro rail corporation (DMRC) has become the first ever
metro system in the country to be certified with the prestigious ISO
50001:2011 (ENMS) rating for efficient energy management. The ISO
50001: 2011 energy management system (ENMS) is a very recent ISO
standard on energy management. It specifies requirements for
establishing, implementing, maintaining and improving an energy
management system, whose purpose is to enable an organization to
follow a systematic approach on achieving continual improvement of
energy performance, including energy-efficiency, energy use and
consumption. The Delhi metro is now in the process of getting all the
under-construction stations on phase 3 to be certified as per ISO
• The fast patrol vessel (fpv) of Aadesh-class of Indian coast guard,
icgs arinjay has been commissioned by the chief of southern naval
command vice admiral Sunil Lanba at the naval base of Kochi, Kerala.
It is the 15th in the series of 20 fpvs, designed and built by Cochin
shipyard limited. The ship has been named icgs 'arinjay', meaning
'victory over evil' and will be based at okha under the administrative
and operational control of the commander, coast guard region (North
West). The 50-metre indigenous fpv has a displacement of 290 tones and
has a maximum designed speed of 33 knots and is capable of undertaking
multifarious tasks viz. Surveillance, interdiction, search and rescue
and medical evacuation. It will be used for anti- smuggling and
anti-piracy activities and also for search and rescue operation,
fisheries protection and monitoring activities.
• The simlipal national park is the largest tiger reserve of Odisha,
situated at Mayurbhanj district. It is part of the UNESCO world
network of biosphere reserves since 2009. The park has a protected
area of 845.70 square kilometers and has some beautiful waterfalls
viz. Joranda and Barehipani. Simlipal is home to 99 royal Bengal
tigers and 432 wild elephants.
• The social media giant, facebook partnered with bsnl to sponsor 100
Wi-Fi hotspots in villages across west and southern India. Facebook
will pay rs 5 lakh for bsnl bandwidth for each hotspot per annum. The
hotspots are being set up by bsnl-selected vendor quad Zen. The
agreement between facebook and bsnl is for 3- years and it can be
further extended for two more years.
• The state government of Punjab has signed a memorandum of
understanding (MOU) with a consortium of beta renewable, novozymes and
cvc India infrastructure pvt. Ltd. To set up a bio-ethanol refinery,
for an estimated project worth rs 950 crore. The bio-refinery will
help in solving the chronic problem of wheat and paddy straw burning
in the state. It will help in containing the loss of fertility and
damage to environment and in generating co-products of biogas, pellets
and compost through processing bio-refinery effluents and pellets.
• The senior diplomat, Mr. Manpreet vohra has been appointed as
India's ambassador to Afghanistan. He succeeded Mr. Amar Sinha. Mr.
Vohra is a 1988-batch Indian Foreign Service officer, is currently
serving as joint secretary in the ministry of external affairs.
• Training to help strengthen bilateral defence ties, the special
forces of the us and Nepalese armies has launched a month-long joint
military training codenamed "balance nail 16-01" in Nepal's
• The thrissur headquartered bank, the south Indian bank (SIB) has
launched 'sib green PIN', which allows the customers to generate ATM
pin themselves through any of south Indian bank's 1,200-plus ATMS
across the country. The green pin has replaced the conventional pin
mailer and removed the difficulties involved in sending and receiving
of physical pin mailers.
• Veteran CPI (m) leader and former speaker of the west Bengal
assembly Hasim Abdul Halin passed away in Kolkata. He was 80. Halin
was the speaker of the state assembly for a record time of 29 years
from 1982 to 2011 during the left front rule in the state. Thus, he
was the longest-serving speaker of any legislative assembly in the
• China is the world's largest producer of cotton. China is followed
by India and USA.
• Recently the Indian navy has successfully test-fired the 290 km
range Brahmos supersonic cruise missile. Brahmos missile is a
two-stage missile system and it operates on 'fire and forget
• According to the report 'freedom on the net 2015', released by
freedom house, china country was the worst abuser of internet freedom
in the world. China was followed by Syria and Iran. Whereas in India,
internet freedom is improved for the second consecutive year in 2015.
The report is based on internet-related developments in 65 countries
across the world since June month of 2014. According to the report,
internet freedom is most improved in Sri Lanka and Zambia because of
recent change in governments of those countries. Freedom house is a
non-profit organization that supports democracy and freedom and
advocates for human rights.
• Recently, the central government has announced the draft aviation
policy, which is aimed at improving connectivity among the smaller
cities. Under the regional connectivity scheme (rcs), the centre will
offer concessions to airlines if they operate on regional routes.
Under the scheme, there is a cap of rs. 2500/- per one hour flight on
remote routes. Central government will bear the 80% of airline's
losses and the remaining by the state governments.
• The demand for creation of Tulu Nadu state is coming from the
Tulu-speaking people who are speared over Karnataka and Kerala. There
is a demand to merge the Dakshina Kannada and udipi district of
Karnataka and kasaragod of Kerala to form the new state of Tulu Nadu.
• The indo-Swiss pair of Martina Hingis and Sania Mirza has won their
ninth title at the wta finals in Singapore.
• After several months of discussions, the ministry of finance and the
reserve bank of India have decided to form a 5-member committee to
decide the monetary policy of the country. The government will
nominate 2 members and RBI will nominate 3 members. Each member of the
committee will have one vote and the RBI governor, chair of the
committee will have a casting vote.
• Brand finance has ranked India as the 7th world's most valuable
nation brand. US are at the top position followed by china and
Germany. The valuation is based on 5-year forecasts of sales of all
brands in each country. The GDP of the nation is used as a proxy for
• Erasmus is a student exchange programme established by the European
Union (EU). Erasmus plus programme (2014-2020) is a new 14.7 billion
euro programme to cover all the EU's programmes on education,
training, youth and sports.
• Nanda Kishor pun from ucpn (Maoist) party is elected as the new
vice-president of the Nepal. He is succeeding Parmananda Jaha. Mr. Pun
was the chief commander of the people's liberation army of the Maoist
• Recently, Google has received the permission from the government to
start testing its project loon. The aim of the project is to provide
low-cost internet access to rural areas of India. Under the project,
floating balloons at a height of 20 km above earth's syface are used
and each balloon can provide internet access up to an area of 40 km.
The balloons are powered though solar panels.
• Visa Inc. Is an American based payment company. Recently it has
announced to buy visa Europe.
• Sudan president Omar Al-Bashir has visited India recently as part of
the India-Africa summit held in New Delhi. International criminal
court (ICC) has requested India for his arrest and India has rejected
the proposal. Omar Al-Bashir is charged by ICC for alleged genocide
and war crimes during Darfur conflict in 2003.
• Sabse technologies Inc, one of the global telecom carriers is
founded by hotmail founder Sabeer Bhatia. Recently Ratan Tata has
announced to invest in the company.
• Reliance communications (R com) announced to buy Russian based
system's Indian wireless business, operating under the mts brand in
India. After the deal system will get 10% stake in Rcom.
• Former president APJ Aabdul Kalam's last book 'advantage India-from
challenge to opportunity' was launched recently. Kalam had completed
99% of the book before he died. The book was co-authored by Srijan Pal
Singh, who is an Iima alumnus. The book describes about how the
initiatives like 'Swach Bharat' and 'make in India' can be used to tap
untapped potential of India.
• Brijmohan lall Munjal, who is widely known as father of the Indian
two-wheeler industry passed away recently. He was the founder of the
hero Moto corp. In the year 1980 he had signed an agreement with Honda
Company to manufacture motorcycles in India.
• India's largest automobile company, Tata motors has appointed Lionel
Messai as the company's global brand ambassador. Initially, the
contract is for two years and it can be expendable afterwards.
• Madhesi people live in the plains region of India-Nepal border.
Recently, they are in news for their strong opposition to the
promulgamation of the Nepal's new constitution.
• Indian railways has installed the one megawatt peak (mwp) rooftop
grid-connected solar power plant at Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Katra
railway station to meet the energy needs of 5000 kw daily. It is the
largest rooftop solar power plant in the Indian railways network and
the largest in Jammu & Kashmir.
• The name of justice t s Thakur (63) was recommended to the
government as the next chief justice of India by current cji justice
Dattu. Present cji justice Dattu will retire on December 2. Presently,
justice Thakur is the senior most judge of the Supreme Court. He would
be the 43rd cji.
• Recently, the deadly tropical cyclone Chapala has made landfall on
the desert nation of Yemen, causing widespread floods in coastal
regions. The cyclone made landfall in the south eastern provinces of
hadramawt and Shabwa along the Gulf of Aden coast of Yemen in Arabian
Sea bringing winds of speed more than 100 kms per hour. Cyclone
Chapala was formed after a low pressure was formed over the Arabian
Sea with deep depression intensity. The low pressure was formed due to
record warm water believed to be associated with an El Niño event and
low vertical wind shear.
• National institute of social defence is a nodal agency of ministry
of social justice & empowerment for training and research in the field
of social defence. It is headquartered in New Delhi.
• Recently, the anthropological survey of India (ANSI) has come up
with the first authentic demographic database of the Shompen tribe. It
is one of the least known particularly vulnerable tribal groups
(PVTGS) in the Andaman and microbar islands. The study found that the
group is heterogeneous with even differences in their dialect,
contrary to the earlier belief that Shompens are a homogeneous tribe.
• 'Sahabat India – the festival of India in Indonesia' is celebrated
earlier this year. Recently, vice president of India during his visit
to Indonesia has thanked the Indonesian government for their support
in organizing the festival.
• President of Maldives Abdulla Yameen has declared state of emergency
for 30 days on grounds of threat to national security. The declaration
with effect to emergency has been made on November 4, 2015 as per
article 253 of the constitution of Maldives. The constitution of
Maldives gives president powers to declare emergency and suspend
certain rights of the citizens.
• In august 2014, the government of India has constituted a high-level
committee under the chairmanship of Dr. T. K. Viswanathan (former law
secretary) to look into various issues related to bankruptcy in India.
On November 4th, the bankruptcy law reform committee (BLRC) has
submitted its report to the union finance minister Shri Arun Jaitley.
The report has two parts. First part is titled as 'rationale and
design' and second part is titled as 'draft insolvency and bankruptcy
bill'. Finance ministry has placed the report, along with a brief
summary of the recommendations on the website at www.finmin.nic.in for
• Indian ace Shooter Jitu Rai has won silver medal at the 13th Asian
shooting championship by finishing second behind Korea's park daehun
in the finals of the men's 50m pistol in Kuwait.
• Recently, the centre of excellence in geothermal energy (CEGE) at
the Gujarat-based Pandit Deendayal petroleum university (PDPU) has
found success by drilling the state's first geothermal Dorewell at
• Veteran CPI (m) leader and former speaker of the west Bengal
assembly Hasim Abdul Halin passed away in Kolkata. He was 80. Halin
was the speaker of the state assembly for a record time of 29 years
from 1982 to 2011 during the left front rule in the state. Thus, he
was the longest-serving speaker of any legislative assembly in the
• Bimal Prasad (92), who was former ambassador to Nepal during early
nineties passed away on November 4, 2015 in New Delhi. He was a close
associate of Jayaprakash Narayan. He authored many books on JP's
philosophy and life including 'a revolutionary's quest', 'Gandhi,
Nehru and JP, studies in leadership' and 'socialism, Sarvodaya and
democracy.' he worked as professor at Patna university and Jawaharlal
Nehru university. He held the responsibility of chairman, institute of
Gandhian studies (Varanasi), director, Gandhi Smriti and memorial,
honorary fellow, Nehru memorial museum and library (NMML) and honorary
director, Rajendra Prasad academy in New Delhi.
• Dr. Sakena yacoobi of Afghanistan wins the wise prize for education
at the seventh world innovation summit for education (wise) in Doha,
Qatar on November 4, 2015. Dr. Sakena Yacoobi is known as
Afghanistan's mother of education. For the past two decades she is
working for the educational development in the war torn country. She
has dedicated the prize to the afghan institute of learning.
• Herve falciani, who worked as systems engineer at hsbc bank has
offered to cooperate with Indian investigative agencies without
pre-conditions. Mr falciani is presently facing charges in Switzerland
of leaking details of bank account holders in Geneva branch of hsbc —
a list which later reached French government and subsequently was
shared with India as it had accounts of those Indians who had stashed
• Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has emerged as world's ninth
most powerful person in the Forbes annual ranking of 73 persons list
of 2015. The list gives the annual ranking of the world's 72 most
powerful people on the basis of their financial resources, scope and
use of power and the number of people they impact. Reliance industries
chairman Mukesh Ambani was placed at 36th position.
• To boost the trade activity in the non-coastal parts of the country,
the central government will facilitate the construction of an inland
shipping port at Jalore, Rajasthan, which will connect the state with
the Arabian Sea. The government is aiming to promote transportation of
minerals through the newly created waterway. The inland waterways
authority of India (IWAI) under the ministry of shipping proposes to
guide and support the Rajasthan government for building an inland
shipping port at Jalore.
• The Russian plane heading to st Petersburg, likely carrying tourists
returning from holidays in Egypt's popular Sharm el-sheikh resort was
Crahed in Sinai region of Egypt. All the passengers including crew are
reported to be killed in the crash. Till now, the real cause for the
plane crash is unknown.
• The Serbian and Bosnian government's held their first post-war joint
session in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina on November 4,
2015. Both the countries are trying to improve their relations for
economic development and stabilization of western Balkan region. Both
the countries are aspiring to become members of European Union (EU).
The joint session was held after their conflict began 25 years ago
during the dissolution of Yugoslavia. During the joint session, the
two governments has signed agreements on various issues including
protection of cultural heritage, telecommunications, finding of
mission persons and sustainable development.
• Michelle Payne is the first female jockey to win the $4.44 million
Melbourne cup in Australia's most esteemed race. She is the fourth
female to drive the cup in its 155 year history.
• Ace Indian boxer Shiva Thapa has attained second rank in the latest
international rankings of boxing in the 56 kilogram category. He
ranked second with total 1,550 points in the 56 kilogram category,
becoming the highest-ranked Indian boxer. He has moved up by five
places from the previous list of rankings. Shiva had won a bronze
medal at the 2015 world championships. He was next best-placed Indian
at sixth position in the 75kg middleweight division. The top spot in
the 56 kilogram category was occupied by Michael Conlan from Ireland
with total 2150 points, who had won the gold medal at the 2015 world
• Imprint India is the joint initiative of IIT's and IISC to give
boost to scientific research within the country. Imprint India will
focus on ten themes with each to be coordinated by one IIT/IISC,
namely computer science and ICT (IIT Kharagpur), health care (IIT
Kharagpur), advance materials, (IIT Kanpur), sustainable urban design
(IIT Roorkee), water resources and river systems (IIT Kanpur), defence
(IIT Madras), environmental science and climate change ( IISC,
Bangalore), manufacturing(IIT Madras), Nano-technology hardware (IIT
Bombay) and energy security (IIT Bombay).
• Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella's plans for the ambitious digital India
Programme include an experimental technology pilot in Varanasi. The
software giant has chosen the pilgrim town in Uttar Pradesh as the
venue for a project to fund local entrepreneurs aiming to build
devices that can overcome India's bandwidth crunch.
• Recently, the union cabinet has given its approval for a new scheme
of the ministry of power – Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojna (uday) for the
financial turnaround and revival of power distribution companies
(discoms). The scheme empowers discoms with the opportunity to break
even in the next 2-3 years. The scheme aims at improving the
operational efficiencies of discoms, reduction of cost of power,
reduction in interest cost of discoms and enforcing financial
discipline on discoms through alignment with state finances.
• Recently, Chinese vice president li yuanchao visited India to sign
two agreements including one in the field of water resources on
sharing hydrological data on the Sutlej River. Li is the first Chinese
vice president to visit India in more than six decades.
• The annual legatum prosperity index ranks 142 countries across eight
categories: the economy, entrepreneurship & opportunity, governance,
education, safety & security, personal freedom, health, and social
capital. Norway ranked top in the recent list. Switzerland is ranked
2nd in the index for the third year in a row. India ranked 99
• Under the recently launched sovereign gold bond scheme, the reserve
bank of India (RBI) will issue gold bonds on behalf of the government
of India (goi). The bonds will be sold through banks and designated
post offices. They will be denominated in multiples of gram(s) of gold
with a basic unit of one gram. The bonds will be of eight years tenor,
with an exit option from the 5th year. The buyers of the bonds will
not be allowed to purchase less than 2 grams-worth of bonds and not
more than 500 grams-worth per person per financial year.
• Maharashtra government has approved APJ Abdul Kalam Amrut Yojna
scheme to provide one full hot cooked nutritious food to pregnant,
lactating women in the tribal areas. Anganwadis falling under women
and child welfare department in 16 districts of states having tribal
population will implement it. The scheme will replace the earlier
'take home ration 'scheme which provided packets of Sheera or upma to
lactating or expectant mothers in tribal areas of state.
• Harjit Sajjan is Canadian Sikh who has sworn-in as defence minister
of Canada. He is mp from Vancouver south and was decorated lt colonel
in the Canadian armed forces. He was born in India and later moved
with his family to Canada when he was 5 years-old. He had worked as
detective for the gang crime unit and later joined Canadian military.
He had served in numerous foreign deployments in Bosnia, Kandahar. He
was bestowed with numerous military Honours including meritorious
service medal (2013).
• The admm is a gathering of the defense ministers from the 10 Asian
nations. The admm-plus includes the Asian members along with eight
dialogue partners — Australia, china, India, Japan, new Zealand, south
Korea, Russia and the us. Recently the admm-plus was held in Malaysia.
• 'Rebooting India: realizing a billion aspirations' is authored by
Nandan Nilekani along with his Uidai colleague viral shah. The book
suggests for development of voter id database using the uidai.
• Vidya stokes, former president of hockey India has been nominated as
life president of the federation. She has been nominated for the post
in accordance to rule 5.14 of the hockey India constitution. As per
the hockey India constitution, the life president will be honorary
post and will not have any power and will be of an advisory nature.
The life president will be an invitee to all the executive board and
• The central government has announced a Swachh Bharat cess at the
rate of 0.5% on all services now liable to service tax. The Swachh
Bharat cess will be effective from November 15 this year. The proceeds
will be used for Swachh Bharat initiatives.
• Famous film, television and stage actor Vikram Gokhale (67) was
felicitated with the prestigious Vishnudas Bhave award 2015. He has
been honored for his outstanding contribution to Marathi Theater. The
annual award was instituted by Akhil Maharashtra Natya Vidya Mandir in
memory of pioneer Marathi dramatist Vishnudas Bhave.
• Ravichandran Ashwin created history by becoming the fastest Indian
bowler to reach 150-test wicket landmark – in his 29th test against
South Africa. Former England Seamer Sydney Barnes was the fastest to
pick 150 wickets as he achieved the feat in his 24th match followed by
pakistan pacer Waqar Younis (27) and Aussie Legspinner Clarrie
• Heena Sidhu won the gold medal in the 10m air pistol women's event
at the 13th Asian shooting championships.
• Kerala government is set to develop the first mega tourism circuits
in the country. It will be developed in Gavi-Vagamon region of Kerala.
The 150-km long circuit in the Pathanamthitta-Gavi- Vagamon-Thekkady
region in central Kerala will have a host of new facilities such as
trekking, archery and rock climbing. It will be built under the new
'Swadesh Darshan' scheme of the union tourism ministry.
• Singapore has topped the list of world's healthiest countries, while
India has secured the 103rd position. The list ranks countries using
data from the united nations, the world bank and the world health
• According to the recently released 2011 census data, 10 million
Indians with graduate, post-graduate and technical degrees were
looking for work. Kerala had India's highest graduate unemployment
rate at over 30 per cent.
• The 2015 paragliding world cup (pwc) was held in bir village of
Himachal Pradesh. It was for the first time India hosted world level
• Under the Indian gold coin 2015 scheme, gold coins will be available
in denominations of 5 and 10 grams and 20 gram bullion. The gold coins
will bear national emblem Ashok chakra on one side and Mahatma
Gandhi's engraved image on the other side.
• National institute of nutrition (Nin) is located at Hyderabad.
• Mana Patel of Gujarat won the gold medal in the 69th senior national
aquatic championship in women's category whereas Virdhawal Khade
(Maharashtra) was declared best swimmer of the event in men's
category. The 69th senior national aquatic championship was conducted
at Rajkot of Gujarat.
• Belgium topped the fifa world rankings for the first time in
history. It surpassed the world champions Germany by two points.
Argentina slipped down to third ahead of Portugal, while Chile climbed
up to the fifth place. India's rank is 167.
• Chinese president xi jinping and Taiwan's president ma ying-jeou
held their historic talks in Singapore – their first in more than 60
years on November 7, 2015. The two countries split in 1949 when the
Kuomintang lost to the Chinese communist party in the civil war and
set up a new government in Taiwan. Relations between china and Taiwan
have improved under Mr. Ma ying- jeou since he took office in 2008,
with better economic ties and improving tourism links.
• V Sivaramakrishnan was named as the new managing director of oxford
university press India (oupi) with regional responsibilities including
Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal. He succeeds Ranjan Kaul. Earlier,
Sivaramakrishnan worked in Manipal global education services. Before,
he also worked with ford motor company and proctor and gamble.
• The ministry of science and technology has launched Satyam (science
and technology of yoga and meditation) programme. The main objective
of the programme is to strengthen research in the areas of yoga and
meditation. The programme will harness knowledge obtained in academic
institutions and other related agencies for finding science and
technology -led solutions to the growing stress and strain problems in
• The committee of eminent persons (cep) under the chairmanship of
Prof Ashok Misra submitted its report to the government of India on
5th November 2015. The committee was constituted by iit council to
recommend changes to the iit- jee examination. Many of the
recommendations of the committee are aimed to wean iit aspirants away
from the dependence on coaching institutes.
• Baglihar hydroelectric power project is a run-of-the-river power
project on the Chenab River in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
Recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched the 450 mw
Baglihar hydro electric project stage-ii. Stage-I of the project of
similar installed capacity was commissioned in 2008.
• France is sending its largest warship Charles de Gaulle aircraft
carrier to fight against Islamic state (is) in Syria and Iraq. The
Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier is the largest warship in Western
Europe and is also the only nuclear-powered carrier in service outside
of the us navy. France is joining the usa-led military operation
against Islamic state in Syria and Iraq.
• Haryana based Indian boxer, Vijender Singh registered his second
successive knockout triumph by demolishing England's dean Gillen in
the first round. On 10 October 2015 Vijender Singh won his first
professional boxing match by defeating his opponent sonny whiting.
• Justin Trudeau of liberal party has been elected as 23rd prime
minister of Canada. He is eldest son of Canada's former Prime Minister
Pierre Trudeau who was in office for 16 years and led the country till
1984. He became the second youngest prime minister of Canada and the
first to follow a parent into office.
• From 1st to 3rd December 2015, first international film festival for
the persons with disabilities (iffpd) will be held in New Delhi. The
festival will be organized to recognize the spirit of the persons with
disabilities. The film festival would be organized by the department
of empowerment of persons with disabilities, ministry of social
justice & empowerment along-with national films Development
• China launched yaogan-28, a remote sensing satellite from Taiyuan
launch site in Shanxi province. Long march-4b rocket carried the
satellite into space. It will be used for land surveys, crop yield
estimates and disaster relief etc. China launched the first "Yaogan"
series satellite, yaogan-1, in 2006.
• Indian and Russian armies are conducting the joint military exercise
under the name indra-2015 in Bikaner of Rajasthan from 07 November to
20 November 2015. It is the seventh edition in a series of bilateral
exercises under this name. The year, the joint exercise would focus on
'counter terrorism operations in desert terrain under a united nations
• According to fortune India, sbi's chief Arundhati Bhattacharya
remained as the most powerful woman in the Indian business sector. She
was followed by icici bank's Chanda Kochhar, Shikha Sharma of axis
bank and hpcl chairperson and managing director (md) Nishi Vasudeva.
• World health organization (who) declared Sierra Leone as Ebola free
on 7th November after 18 months of first reported case in the country.
Sierra Leone recorded its first Ebola infection in May 2014. It is one
of the three worst effected countries due to Ebola virus. The other
two are Liberia and guinea. On September 3, Liberia achieved
Ebola-free status. Guinea is still reporting few new cases.
• The isro was planning to launch satellite Aditya to study solar
eclipses on continuous basis and also other aspects of the sun. The
satellite will carry as its payload an advanced solar coronagraph.
Aditya's launch date has been rescheduled to 2017-18, after the
mission was upgraded from a single payload mission to a multiple
• Power ministers of all states and union territories have decided to
electrify all villages by 31st march 2017 in mission mode under
Deendayal Upadhyaya Grameen Jyoti Yojana (ddugjy). It is also resolved
to work in mission mode to complete the activities in the roll out
plan for achieving the 24×7 power for all by 2019 or earliest.
• An Indian culture week called "India in shanghai" was inaugurated at
china shanghai international arts festival .for the first time in the
17-year history of the china shanghai international arts festival,
India was designated as the guest country. The event aims at promotion
of people-to-people linkages as well as strengthening cultural
exchanges between India and china. The India culture week showcase the
best of contemporary Indian arts.
• The national centre for radio astrophysics (ncra) is located in the
Pune university campus and is part of the Tata institute of
fundamental research, Mumbai, India. .recently, Indian astronomers
working at the national centre for radio astrophysics have discovered
an extremely rare galaxy of gigantic size. Galaxies with an extreme
large 'radio size' are called as giant radio galaxies. The galaxy is
known by its scientific identification 'j021659-44920'. The galaxy was
discovered using the giant Metre wave radio telescope (gmrt) located
near Pune. The galaxy is located about 9 billion light years away and
it emits powerful radio waves. The galaxy was caught in dying phase.
• Niti aayog's task force on agriculture recommended major reforms to
address the issue of frequent spurt in crop prices. Major
recommendations of the task force include setting up of a unified
national agriculture market, guaranteed prices for at least half the
key crops, changing land lease laws and creating a mechanism to
facilitate easy exit for farmers who want to move out of agriculture.
• The 9th of november of every year is celebrated as the legal
services day in India. It was first started by supreme court of India
in the year 1995 to provide help and support to poor and weaker
sections of the society. On the occasion of nlsd, the union government
declared its commitment towards Towards Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, and
added that an intrinsic part of this commitment is Sabka Nyay or
justice for all.
• Recently, Agni-iv missile with strike range of 4,000 km was
successfully test-fired from the wheeler island, off the Odisha coast.
This was the fifth trial of Agni-iv missile. The indigenously
developed surface-to-surface Agni-iv missile is a two-stage weapon
system. It is 20 Metres long and weighs 17 tonnes. Agni-i, ii and iii
and Prithvi missiles are already in the arsenal of the armed forces,
giving them reach of over 3,000 km.
• BCCI has appointed retired justice ap shah as its first-ever ethics
officer (ombudsman) with one year tenure. Justice ap shah was former
chief justice of Delhi high court. The BCCI also removed former
president and ICC chairman n Srinivasan as its representative at the
world body. BCCI also appointed former captain Sourav Ganguly was
appointed chairman of the technical committee.
• Former union environment and forest minister (independent charge)
Jairam Ramesh authored the book titled – 'to the brink and back:
India's 1991 story'. The book was published on first week of September
2015. The book discussed about the economic policy changes introduced
by late p v Narasimha Rao and Manmohan Singh in 1991
• Kosovo's proposal for membership was narrowly rejected by the unesco
members. According to unesco rules, the support of two—thirds of those
voting was required to allow membership for a new state. Kosovo's
proposal got less than two-thirds of votes. Kosovo has been recognized
by 111 countries since it declared independence from serbia in 2008.
Russia backed serbia in kosovo's 1998—99 war for independence. Russia
has used its u.n. Security council veto to block kosovo from becoming
a full u.n. Member.
• The first world humanitarian summit will be held in early 2016 in
istanbul of turkey. The summit aimed at setting a forward-looking
agenda for humanitarian action to collectively address future
humanitarian challenges. It also aimed to build a more inclusive and
diverse humanitarian system committed to humanitarian principles.
• Ministry of culture, government of India has organized the 'first
Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav' at Ignca, Janpath, New Delhi. The event
presented a cultural confluence with 150 art forms, 32 forms of
paintings, visual arts, 400 master craftsmen and cuisine by
traditional master chefs. The 8 days festival witnessed live
performances by a number of renowned Indian artists like Gurdas Maan,
Sharda Sinha, Sandeep Mahavir etc.
• A study web of active-learning for young aspiring minds (swayam) is
a web portal where massive open on-line courses (moocs) will be
available on all kinds of subjects. Swayam, India's maiden indigenous
massive online open courseware for students was launched by the human
resource development ministry.
• Us based general electric and French engineering company alstom have
bagged $5.6 billion ( rs 37,000 crore) worth of contract from the
Indian railways to build diesel and electric locomotive factories in
Marhora and Madhepura in Bihar. It is the first major foreign direct
investment (fdi) in rail projects after the limit was raised by the
government in select railways sectors.
• Kottayam is called Akshata Nagari which means the city of letters
considering its contribution to print media and literature. Kottayam
town is the first town in India to have achieved 100% literacy.
• Gujarat has become the first state in the country to start mines
auction. The Gujarat government has issued a notification for auction
of five limestone blocks. Gujarat government has passed the mines and
minerals (development and regulation) amendment act, 2015 in March
this year. It stipulates auction as the only means to allow extraction
of iron ore and other minerals.
• Raghuram Rajan, reserve bank of India (rbi) governor has been
elected vice-chairman of the bank of international settlement (bis).
He will have a three-year term. He is the first rbi governor to become
the vice-chairman of bis. Bis is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland.
Bis acts as a coordinating body among central banks of various nations
to ensure global monetary and financial stability.
• World science day is celebrated worldwide on 10 November each year.
It was started in 2001 by UNESCO. It is celebrated to demonstrate the
importance of science in our daily life. The theme of world science
day 2015 is science for a sustainable future.
• The union ministry of culture has constituted an advisory committee
for a multidisciplinary study of Saraswati river. The committee has
several members, including culture minister, the culture secretary,
the tourism secretary and asi director general etc. It has a fixed
tenure of two years. The committee will draw up a programme for the
study of the Saraswati basin and will identify 16 sites for research
• The world energy outlook report is published annually by
international energy agency (iea). The international energy agency
(iea) was established in the framework of the organization for
economic co-operation and development (oecd) in 1974. It acts as a
policy adviser to its member states. The world energy outlook 2015,
points that the global energy use is set to grow by one-third over the
next 25 years, driven mostly by emerging economies.
• The union government has enhanced fipb's monetary limit to approve
foreign investment proposals of up to rs 5,000 crore. Earlier, fipb
was allowed to approve foreign investment proposals of worth up to rs
3,000 crore. The fipb is headed by secretary of department of economic
affairs. Beyond the ceiling of rs 5,000 crore, cabinet committee on
economic affairs (ccea) headed by the prime minister will look into
• Recently, the union government has allowed 100 per cent fdi in five
plantation crops, mainly coffee, rubber, cardamom, palm oil tree and
olive oil tree via automatic route. Earlier, 100 per cent fdi is
allowed only in tea plantation through the government approval route.
But now all foreign investment in the plantation sector would come
under automatic route.
• According to the census 2011 data, Kerala has the highest female
literacy rate of 91.98% where as Rajasthan has the lowest female
literacy rate of 52.66%. Lakshadweep holds the first rank in male
literacy rate whereas Bihar has recorded lowest male literacy rate.
• The 68th un general assembly has declared 2016 as the international
year of pulses (iyp). The iyp 2016 aims to increase the public
awareness about the nutritional benefits of pulses as part of
sustainable food production aimed towards food security and nutrition.
The food and agriculture organization of the United Nations (fao) has
been nominated to facilitate the implementation of the year in
collaboration with all stakeholders.
• India is not a member to the international criminal court (icc). Icc
was established under the Rome statute adopted in 1998 and entered
into force on 2002. Presently 123 states are party to the icc. India
has neither signed nor ratified the Rome statute on the international
criminal court (icc). The reason is that Rome statute on the
international criminal court (icc) defines war crimes including the
'armed conflict not of an international character'. The situation of
conflict that persists in Kashmir, the north-east, and, for a while,
in Punjab explains the reasons for the state's anxiety that this
manner of violence could be referred to the icc.
• The government has allowed 100% fdi in duty free shops under
automatic route. In the defence sector, 49 per cent foreign investment
has been allowed under the automatic route and anything beyond
requires the approval of foreign investment promotion board (fipb). In
the private banking sector, the government has introduced full
fungibility of foreign investment with Sectoral limit of 74 per cent,
provided there is no change of control and management of the investee
company. In the broadcasting sector, 100 per cent fdi has been allowed
in dth, teleports, mobile tv and cable networks. Of this, 49 per cent
will be allowed under automatic route and beyond that will need fipb
• Former reserve bank of India deputy governor Subir Gokarn was
appointed as an executive director on the board of the international
monetary fund (imf). He replaced Mr. Rakesh Mohan at the imf. Gokarn
will represent India, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Sri Lanka on the imf's
executive board, which is responsible for conducting the day-to-day
business of the multilateral institution.
• Recently, an international summit on migration between eu and
African leaders was held in Valletta, Malta. The summit was held to
ease the Europe's migration crisis. The summit was attended by 63
European and African heads of state and government, as well as
representatives of international and regional organizations.
• The Indian institute of science (iisc) Bangalore has made its entry
into the world's top 100 universities for engineering and technology.
'times higher education (the) ranking for engineering & technology'
placed iisc at 99th position. The list is dominated by us institutions
with Stanford, Caltech and Massachusetts institute of technology (mit)
in the top three positions.
• In an initiative to reduce infant, neonatal and maternal mortality
in India, bill and Melinda gates foundation, msd India, reliance
foundation, tata trusts and the United States agency for international
development (usaid) formed an alliance to launch project asman.
• Kerala government along with un women has organized the first
international conference on gender equality (icge) near Kovalam,
Kerala from November 12-14. The conference included plenary sessions,
presentations and discussions by gender experts from around the world.
Kerala's draft policy on transgender rights is also discussed.
• Santoor maestro Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma was presented with this
year's Aditya Vikram Birla Kala Shikhar award for life time
achievement. Lata Mangeshkar, pt Bhimsen Joshi, pt Jasraj, guru
Kelucharan Mohapatra, pt ram Narayan, m f Hussain, Habib Tanvir, ms
Gangubai Hangal, Dr Girija Devi are few of the past recipients of the
award. The award has been instituted by the Sangit Kala Kendra headed
by Rajashree Birla. The Sangit Kala Kendra was founded by late
industrialist Mr Aditya Vikram Birla in 1973 to encourage and nurture
the various visual and performing arts. The awards were instituted in
• Bindeshwar Pathak, founder of ngo Sulabh and Purnima Mehta, director
general of the American institute of Indian studies are the Indians,
whose names are list in an inaugural 'global diversity list.' the list
supported by 'the economist' magazine include 50 global personalities
who have used their position in public life to make an impact on
diversity. Others in the list include us president Barak Obama,
Microsoft's bill gates, spiritual guru the dalai lama and Pakistani
Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai
• Abraham m Kieta (17) of Liberia was awarded with the prestigious
international children's peace prize 2015. He won the prize for his
role in demanding justice for children who are victims of physical or
sexual violence. The international children's peace prize is awarded
annually to a child who has made a significant difference in improving
children's rights. The prize was launched by kidsrights during the
2005 world summit of Nobel peace laureates at the capitol in Rome,
chaired by Mikhail Gorbachev. Since then, the prize has been presented
every year by a Nobel peace laureate.
• Wasim Jaffer became the first cricketer to complete 10000 runs in
ranji tropy. He reached the milestone in his 126 match. He is followed
by amol muzumdar and mithun manhas. Presently, wasim jaffer is playing
for vidarbha team.
• Prime Minister Narendra Modi has unveiled the statue of Basaveshwara
in London. Basaveshwara was a 12th century Indian philosopher and
kannada poet. He spread social awareness through his poetry, popularly
known as vachanas.
• Exercise livewire is an annual exercise conducted by Indian air
force to work up the full spectrum of iaf capability and undertake
planned operations in response to likely future threats and
operational contingencies. Recent exercise was concluded on November
• Recently, union government has extended by one year the tenure of a
high level committee set up under former chief economic advisor Ashok
Lahiri to suggest steps to sort out taxation problem being faced by
the trade and industry. The committee was formed in December 2014.
• C919, developed by commercial aircraft corporation of china (comac)
is the first plane produced by a Chinese initiative to compete in the
market for large passenger jetliners. China is one of the biggest
aviation markets but relies on Boeing and airbus aircraft. The c919 is
one of several initiatives launched by the ruling communist party to
transform china from the world's low-cost factory into a creator of
• Recently, Russia's athletics federation was provisionally suspended
from international competition – including the Olympic games – for its
alleged involvement in widespread doping. The council of the
international association of athletics federations (iaaf) took action
after the publication of an independent world anti-doping agency
(wada) report that alleged "state- sponsored doping".
• Gsat-15, India's communication satellite, was launched successfully
by the European Ariane 5 va-227 launch vehicle on November 11. The
3164 kg gsat-15 carries communication transponders in ku-band as well
as a gps aided geo augmented navigation (gagan) payload operating in
l1 and l5 bands. Gsat-15 will be positioned at 93.5 deg east longitude
in the geostationary orbit along with the operational insat-3a and
• To improve children's education by enhancing interaction between
schools and parents, cbse, has developed in-house, a decision support
system called 'saransh'. The platform is presently available for
classes 9th to 12th and provides a comprehensive overview of standard
10th performance since 2007 and standard 12th performance since 2009
till the current academic session. Presently, results of cbse are
available on this portal/app.
• India won as many as 11 medals, including five gold, three silver
and three bronze at the world youth chess championships at Porto
carras in Greece. The world youth chess championships are amongst the
biggest event in the world with participation of players from across
• According to the cumulative data from April 2000 to June 2015,
Mauritius contributed 35% of total fdi flows in to India. Mauritius is
followed by Singapore (14%), united kingdom (9%) and Japan (7%).
• Kaziranga national park is located in the Golaghat and Nagaon
districts of Assam and is circumscribed by the Brahmaputra river. It
was designated with national park status in 1968 and was declared
unesco world heritage site in 1985 for its unique natural environment.
Recently, India's first exclusive hospital for elephants has been
established at the Kaziranga national park. The hospital was set up at
mark Shand memorial learning centre in Kaziranga national park. It was
inaugurated by sir Evelyn de Rothschild who is founding patron of the
uk-based charity elephant family.
• Meghalaya is considered as the home to the citrus Indica or wild
orange, the very first species of citrus fruits in the world. It is
found in west garo hills district of Meghalaya, especially in nokrek
biosphere reserve. The fruit is used to treat stomach problems and
• Recently, Haryana government has launched 'gyps vulture
reintroduction programme'. In recent times, vulture population in
India is decreased due to diclofenac, a non-steroidal anti-
inflammatory drug which is given to cattle in inflammation and pain.
The vultures get exposed to the drug when they feed on the carcasses
of an animal which died within 75 hours of the administration of the
• The Wangala is a post-harvest festival celebrated by garo tribe of
north east India. During the festival they give thanks to the sun god
of fertility. Generally, it is celebrated annually in November month.
• Kerala government is getting ready to open an university
particularly for research-oriented studies related to gender. The
gender university will come up in Kozhikode district in the campus of
Gender Park, an autonomous institution under the state's social
justice department. The south Asian research centre at the gender park
will be developed into a full-fledge varsity by next year and it will
be the first such university in the country.
• A governing council under the chairmanship of union finance minister
was formed to oversee the activities of the national investment and
infrastructure fund (niif). The members of the council are financial
services secretary, sbi chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya, investment
banker Hemendra Kothari and former Infosys director t v Mohandas Pai.
The mandate of the council is approval of guidelines for investment of
trust property/corpus of niif and parameters for appointment and
performance of investment managers/ advisors. Niif is a contributory
and determinate investment trust, under the provisions of the Indian
trusts act, 1882.
• As per extant instructions, the maximum value that can be stored in
any prepaid card (issued by banks and authorized non-bank entities) at
any point of time is rs 50,000/-. The open system prepaid cards are
issued by the banks can be used to withdraw cash from an atm, purchase
of goods and services at point of sale (pos)/e-commerce (online
purchase) and for domestic fund transfer from one person to another.
However, the semi-closed system prepaid cards are issued by authorized
non-bank entities can be used only for purchase of goods and services
at point of sale (pos)/e-commerce (online purchase) and for domestic
fund transfer from one person to another.
• Myanmar's opposition leader aung san suu kyi's party has won the
recent election conducted in Myanmar. The party has ousted the
military-linked present government. This win will take the Myanmar
closer to full democracy. Suu kyi and her party are the long time
antagonists to the generals who ruled Myanmar from a coup in 1962
until 2011, when they handed power to their political arm after a 2010
vote that was tainted by allegations of fraud and boycotted by the
• Recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched the country's
first low-income state infrastructure equity partnership (or the neev
fund) in London. State bank of India has partnered with the british
department for international development to launch this fund that will
invest in small infrastructure projects in eight low-income states.
• Recently, sic global, a Bangalore based brokerage has launched,
India's first mobile-based platform to facilitate global investments
for domestic retail investors. The application is called stockal and
it will provide intelligence for investments on nasdaq and nyse listed
equities. With this app, retail investor can now hedge their books and
portfolio by trading the same stock in global market as adr.
• Under the liberalized remittance scheme (lrs, all resident
individuals, including minors, are allowed to freely remit up to usd
2,50,000 per financial year for any permissible current or capital
account transaction or a combination of both. There are no
restrictions on the frequency of remittances under lrs.
• Rajasthan government will be conducting the process of e-auction of
mines. It is the first state to start e-bidding for mines in India.
E-bidding will ensure the transparency in allocation of mines.
• Recently, the 19th international children's film festival of India
popularly known as, 'the golden elephant,' was started in Hyderabad on
14 November. Children's film society, India (cfsi) is the nodal
organization to conduct the festival. Cfsi organizes an international
children's film festival every alternate year in India.
• Mercedes driver nico rosberg from Germany has won the 2015 Brazilian
grand prix title of formula one (f1) by beating his teammate Lewis
Hamilton. It was rosberg's fifth win of 2015 and the 13th of his
• Kamala Laxman was a noted writer of children's books and wife of
iconic cartoonist and creator of the 'common man' R.K. Laxman. She was
also a renowned Bharatanatyam danseuse and movie star, who began her
career as baby kamala and then was later known as Kumari kamala. She
was commissioned by the India book house in the 1970s to pen the thama
stories and tales of tenali raman, krishnadeva raya's witty prime
minister. The Tenali Raman stories were later memorably serialized and
telecast on Doordarshan.
• The asia-pacific economic cooperation (apec) member economies have
formally launched an initiative to make financial services accessible
to more micro, small and medium-enterprises (msmes). The financial
infrastructure development network (fidn) is a network that brought
together experts from the public and private sectors, including
international organizations and industry associations, to support apec
economies in undertaking financial infrastructure reforms
• Recently, reserve bank of India (rbi) has allowed non-resident
Indians (nris) to invest in the national pension system (nps), under
foreign exchange management act. The subscription amounts shall be
paid by nris by inward remittance through normal banking channels or
out of funds held in their non-resident external, foreign currency non
- repatriable, or non-resident ordinary (nro) accounts. There shall be
no restriction on repatriation of the annuity or accumulated savings.
Presently, the minimum investment limit per year under nps tier-i
account is rs 6000/-.
• For the first time in nearly two decades, Philippines will host the
2015 asia-pacific economic cooperation (apec) leaders' summit in
manila the first time the Philippines hosted the summit was in 1996.
This year, under the theme of "building inclusive economies, building
a better world", manila will push for inclusive growth, highlighting
the role of small and medium enterprises (smes), which account for
more than 97 per cent of businesses in apec economies.
• Recently, union defence minister has handed over maareech – advanced
torpedo defence system developed by drdo to the Indian navy. Maareech
is a joint project of naval physical and oceanographic laboratory
(npol), Kochi and naval science and technological laboratory (nstl),
Vishakhapatnam. It is a state-of-the-art indigenous system for torpedo
detection and countermeasures.
• November 14 is observed as world diabetes day. It is jointly
organized by the world health organization and the international
diabetes federation. The logo of world diabetes day is a blue circle,
which symbolizes life and health. November 14 marks the birthday of
the man who co-discovered insulin, Frederick banting. Insulin is a
critically important medication for individuals with type 1 diabetes.
• The doyand lake in Nagaland is set to develop as an eco-tourism spot
for bird-watchers. Amur falcons come to roost at doyang lake in wokha
district of Nagaland every year, during their flight from mongolia to
Africa. The falcons travel almost 22,000km every year and come to
doyang every year in millions. They spend nearly a month in doyang on
the bank of the water reservoir of the doyang hydroelectric project.
• Syed Akbaruddin (1985 batch ifs officer) has been appointed as
India's permanent representative to the United Nations. He will
succeed Asoke Mukerji. Earlier, he had served at the international
atomic energy agency (iaea) in Geneva and is considered an "expert" on
the west Asia where he had served in various capacities.
• Interpol has introduced a new international alert called "silver
notice" on a pilot basis to assist its 190 member countries to
identify, monitor, freeze and confiscate assets of criminals globally.
Other alerts issued by Interpol are – red notice, blue notice, green
notice, yellow notice, black notice, orange notice, purple notice and
un special notice. Click here to know about types of Interpol notices.
• The United Nations (UN) international day for tolerance is observed
annually on November 16 to help people understand the importance of
tolerance worldwide. In 1996, the un general assembly invited the un
member states to observe the international day for tolerance on 16
November. This action followed on the un year for tolerance, 1995,
proclaimed by the un general assembly in 1993 at the initiative of
• Kerala government will organize an international skill summit called
nypunyam 2016 in February 2016. It will also organize skill fiesta to
project the competency standards and global employability of youth in
the Kerala state to the employers worldwide. The competition is
modeled after world skills competition, which was held at sao Paulo,
• Australia is considered to have the largest reserve of recoverable
uranium in the world. However, Australia ranks third in terms of
production of uranium. Kazakhstan and Canada produce more than
Australia. Recently, India and Australia have concluded their civil
nuclear agreement. India is the first country to buy uranium from
Australia without being a signatory to the nuclear non-proliferation
• Recently, defence minister has commissioned the coast guard's latest
and largest offshore patrol vessel, Samarth. Samarth is the first in
the series of six 105m offshore patrol vessels. It has been built by
Goa shipyard. Samarth has a max. Speed of 23 knots and has an
endurance of 6000 nautical miles at economical speed.
• Recently, the British prime minister has announced that 2017 will be
celebrated as the India-uk year of culture. Presently, India has no
free trade agreement with United Kingdom.
• In 2017, Madame Tussauds', world famous wax museum, will open its
new venture in New Delhi. Madame Tussaud's wax museum is one of the
major tourist attraction in London. It's branches are spread across
the world. In Asia, it's present in Bangkok, Beijing, Hong Kong,
Tokyo, shanghai, Singapore and wuhan. Indian celebrities like Mahatma
Gandhi, Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh khan, Salman khan, Aishwarya Rai
Bachchan and Kareena Kapoor khan are some of the names who have been
featured at the museum.
• On 15 November, union ministry of health and family welfare has
launched the country's first affordable medicines and reliable
implants for treatment (Amrit) pharmacy outlet at aiims in New Delhi
to sell drugs at highly discounted rates. The pilot Amrit outlet will
be managed by the government-owned hll lifecare ltd (hll), which will
sell both drugs and implants at significant discount on market rates.
• Dr. Srinath Raghavan is senior fellow at the centre for policy
research, New Delhi. His publications include war and peace in modern
India: a strategic history of the Nehru years (2010), 1971: a global
history of the creation of Bangladesh, (2013), and India's war: the
making of modern south Asia, 1939-45 (2016). The Infosys prize is an
annual award given in six categories – engineering and computer
science, life sciences, mathematical sciences, physical sciences,
social sciences and the humanities. The prize for each category
includes a gold medallion, a citation certificate, and prize money of
rs. 55 lakh.
• The skills 2015 international conference will be held in Hyderabad
on November 19 and 20. The conference aims to address the crucial
aspect of skill development needed for achieving and sustaining a
• Chip maker Intel has launched 'ek kadam unnati ki aur' in Telangana
state. It is aimed at creation of a blueprint for state-sponsored
rural India digital campaigns. The company will create a platform
where different partners and stakeholders would contribute their
expertise or services to the programme. It has set up the first unnati
centre in Mahboobnagar district of Telangana. Telangana is one of the
10 states where intel plans to roll out the initiative.
• According to a biannual top500 list of supercomputers, china's
tianhe-2 supercomputer has maintained its position as the world's most
powerful system for the 6th consecutive time. Tianhe-2 (or milky way
2) was developed by china's national university of defence technology
and deployed at the national supercomputer center in Guangzhou. Its
performance is 33.86 petaflops per second (pflop/s), .it has held the
title since June 2013. The Chinese system is almost twice as fast as
the next on the list, titan of the us department of energy.
• Union minister of state for home affairs, Shri Kiren Rijiju is
honored with disaster risk reduction (drr) champion for the asia
region by the united nations office for disaster risk reduction
(unisdr). The honour was conferred during the inaugural session of the
Asia leaders meeting towards implementation of the sendai framework
for drr in Asia.
• India's first mega silk cluster will come up at belavadi, on the
outskirts of mysuru in Karnataka state. The silk cluster is a first of
its kind initiative, aimed at creating state-of-the-art infrastructure
facilities for silk weaving and processing in the region. Initially,
the government of India will contribute rs. 30 crore towards the
project and a special purpose vehicle (spv) will be constituted for
raising the remaining cost from stakeholders. The facility is expected
to be completed in 2016.
• December 3 is observed as the international day of persons with
disabilities. The annual observance was proclaimed in 1992 by the
United Nations. The theme for 2015 is-'inclusion matters: access and
empowerment of people of all abilities'. The present Modi government
has launched 'accessible India campaign' also known as Sugamya Bharat
Abhiyan to provide universal accessibility to persons with
• The space junk wt1190f (wtf) has successfully landed near southern
coast of Sri Lanka on November 13. Most of wtf burned up in the
atmosphere. Initially, it was believed as some form of
extra-terrestrial related object.
• Satya Paul Agarwal (70), a Padma Bhushan recipient, an eminent
neurosurgeon and secretary general of Indian red cross society was
passed away. Since 2005, he had been secretary general of Indian red
cross society and was also the chair of the international federation
of red cross and red crescent advisory body on sustainable development
• India is ranked 80th out of 104 countries in the global hunger index
2015. This report's ghi scores are based on a new, improved formula
that reflects the multidimensional nature of hunger by combining four
indicators related to undernourishment, wasting, stunting, and child
mortality. The global hunger index (ghi) was first released by the
international food policy research institute and welthungerhilfe in
• The doha round of negotiations are the latest round of trade
negotiations among the wto membership. The negotiations are aimed to
achieve major reforms of the international trading system by way of
low trade barriers and revised trade rules. The round was started in
2001 in Doha, Qatar during the WTO's fourth ministerial conference.
• World economic forum's global gender gap index 2015 has ranked India
at 108 out of 145 countries. Last year India's rank was 114. India has
moved up six spots. The index is constructed on the basis of the gap
between men and women in each country across four sub-indices, namely,
economic participation and opportunity, educational attainment, health
and survival, and political empowerment. Iceland, Norway and Finland
ranked the first, the second and the third respectively.
• Recently, the union cabinet has approved the proposal of the
department of health research in the ministry of health and family
welfare for setting up of a national resource facility for bio-medical
research (narf) at genome valley in Hyderabad by the Indian council
for medical research (icmr). It will be the first of its kind for
quality laboratory animals for basic and applied biomedical research
in the country.
• The cabinet committee on economic affairs (ccea) has approved the
disinvestment of 10 percent paid up equity capital of coal India
(cil). After the disinvestment, the government of India's shareholding
in cil would come down to 68.65 percent. The disinvestment will be by
way of an offer for sale (ofs) of shares by the promoters through the
stock exchange mechanism method as per the securities and exchange
board of India (sebi) rules and regulations.
• The icft- unesco fellini prize is awarded to a film which reflects
the ideals promoted by unesco. After the death of Italian film
director Federico Fellini in 1993, UNESCO member states adopted a
resolution to safeguard the cinematographic heritage. The Fellini
medal was first unveiled at the Cannes film festival in May 1995.
• Recently, Russia has launched a satellite called eks kosmos-2510 as
the first satellite in a new fleet of 10 eks military satellites to be
launched by 2018 to form a new defence system to detect enemy missile
heading towards Russian territory. The eks (integrated space system)
satellites fleet will replace russia's previous oko early warning
system which had its last satellite launch in 2012.
• The government of India is setting up an international centre of
excellence in investigation (icei) at cbi academy, Ghaziabad. The
center will train not only cbi and other state and central officers
but also officers from ASEAN and SAARC countries.
• Recently, Tata steel has commissioned India's largest single
location Greenfield steel project at Kalinga Nagar in Odisha's Jajpur
district. Tata steel's 6 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) plant is
being set up in two phases of 3 million tonnes each over 2200 acre of
land. In the first phase of the project, more than rs 25,000 crore has
been invested and the facility will provide direct employment to about
3000 people and more than 22,000 have got indirect employment.
• Recently, one of the astronomer at Massachusetts institute of
technology (mit) has found a rocky planet similar to Venus that will
open opportunities to study planets outside of the milky way. It is
named as gj1132b. Gj1132b is roughly earth-sized and the closest
exoplanet ever discovered. It is called Exoplanet as it orbits a star
other than the sun.
• Shankaran Nair was the author of the book 'inside ib and raw: the
rolling stone that gathered moss'. He passed away recently. He was
former chief of the country's external intelligence agency research
and analysis wing (raw). Mr. Nair succeeded r n kao, as the chief of
raw in 1977. Shankaran Nair was credited with the success of the 1971
Bangladesh war. Under his leadership, raw helped find the guerrilla
fighters troupe mukti bahini and train them.
• Jorgen stock is the present secretary-general of Interpol. Recently,
he was in India for attending sixth global focal point conference on
asset recovery at New Delhi. Interpol coordinates with the law
enforcement agencies of the all member nations. It's headquarter is in
Lyon, France. Currently, 190 countries are its members.
• All of the above conditions support for healthy rice cultivation.
• Basel iii" is a comprehensive set of reform measures, developed by
the Basel committee on banking supervision, to strengthen the
regulation, supervision and risk management of the banking sector. It
has to implemented by countries central bank for growth of banking
• 2015 g-20 Antalya summit was the tenth meeting of the g-20 heads of
government. It was held on 15-16 November 2015 in Antalya, turkey.
• Kohvar on marriage occasion and Sohrai on harvest occasion in
Jharkhand state of India.
• The njac act and the constitutional amendment act after receiving
president assent came into force from 13 April 2015.the commission is
said to be responsible for the appointment and transfer of judges to
the higher judiciary in India. However, the act was rejected by
supreme court under judicial review doctrine of the court. The
honorable supreme court of India said, the act tend to dismantle the
independence of judiciary and still need many amendments to be done in
• International vaccine access centre (ivac) has reported in 2015,
that pneumonia & diarrhoea to be the common diseases for maximum
number of death in children of India.
• Shilpa Shetty has co-authored the book the great Indian diet, which
is based on the goodness of Indian food. The another co-author is
health and fitness expert Luke countinho
• World coped day is organized each year by the global initiative for
chronic obstructive lung disease (gold) to improve awareness and care
of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (coped) around the world.
World copd day 2015 took place on November 18 around the theme "it's
not too late."
• Adi shankaracharya' born in 788 ce was a philosopher and theologian
from India who consolidated the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta. He
explained the key difference between Hinduism and Buddhism, stating
that Hinduism asserts "atman (soul, self) exists", while Buddhism
asserts that there is "no soul, no self. The government may declare
his birth date as philosopher day.
• After the rejection of njac, Supreme Court have asked to stick to
the original collegiums system for appointment of judges.
• According to the 3rd edition of the global terrorism index (gti)
2015, India ranked as 6th most affected national by terrorism in
India. In India, the two deadliest Islamic terrorist groups in 2014
were Lashkar-e-Taiba (let) and Hizbul mujahedeen. The other five
countries that were most affected by terrorism in 2014 are Iraq,
Afghanistan, Nigeria, Pakistan and Syria.
• The world fisheries day is celebrated every year on November 21. It
was started to draw attention to overfishing, habitat destruction
another threats to the sustainability of the freshwater and marine
• Nishant is an indigenously-developed unmanned aerial vehicle (uav)
of the Indian army. Recently, it was crashed near Pokhran in
Rajasthan. It was second such incident in 15 days. Now the Indian army
decided not to purchase any more Nishant.
• The 2015 Asean summit was held in Malaysia on November 21. The Asean
group includes ten countries of south-east Asia. First Asean summit
was held in 1976 in Bali, Indonesia. The 10 member states of Asian
group are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar,
Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Asean+3 group member
states are Asian + Japan, china and South Korea.
• Syrian woman journalist Zaina Erhaim has won the prestigious 2015
reporters without borders prize for her defence of press freedom. She
was singled out for this prestigious award for her determination and
courage covering news in civil war and conflict ravaged Syria which is
deemed the most dangerous country in the world for journalists.
Presently, Zaina Erhaim lives and works in Aleppo (Syria). She has
trained about 100 citizen reporters (third of them are women) from
Syria in past two years. She also has helped in establishing new,
independent newspapers and magazines in the war-torn country.
Reporters without borders prize is an annual award established in 1992
by Paris (France) based ngo reporters without borders (rwb). It is
bestowed upon journalists who have made a significant contribution to
the defence and promotion of press freedom.
• Indira Gandhi prize for peace, disarmament and development for 2015
will be awarded to the office of the United Nations high commissioner
for refugees (unhcr). The prize carries a cash award of rs. 25 lakh
and a citation. It was first awarded in 1986.un general assembly
established unhcr on December 14, 1950 initially to help people
displaced by World War II. Since then it became the principal agency
that has helped displaced persons the world over.
• Recently, seventh central pay commission, headed by justice A K
Mathur has submitted its report to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. The
main recommendations of the commission include 23.55 per cent increase
in pay and allowances, 24 per cent hike in pensions, minimum pay fixed
at rs 18,000 per month and maximum pay at rs 2.25 lakh.
• The international film festival of India was first started in 1952.
It is considered as the most significant film festival of Asia. It is
celebrated annually from 20 to 30 November in Goa state of India.
• Recently, the Vijay Kelkar committee, set up to review the
public-private partnership (ppp) model in India has presented its
report to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. The committee looked into
measures to improve capacity building in the government for effective
implementation of ppp projects, review of experience of ppp policy,
analysis of risks involved in such projects in different sectors and
an existing framework of sharing of such risks between project
developers and the government.
• Sugar and its product were termed as 'sweet poison' by international
diabetes federation in g20 summit. It was urged to impose high taxes
on sugar and its related product to prevent people from few commonly
spreading diseases such as diabetes and obesity.
• The first `distinguished Indologist` award was conferred on Prof.
Emeritus Heinrich freiherr von stietencron of the federal republic of
germany. The president of India has conferred the award during the
first ever world indology conference held in New Delhi on November 21.
The award will carry us $ 20,000 and a citation. Heinrich von
stietencron has worked on various aspects of history of Indian
religions, especially Hinduism. He was one of the founding members of
the Orissa project, which focuses on history and socio-cultural
significance of Jagannath cult in Orissa. He was also conferred with
Padma Shri in 2004.
• Indian scientist, Yusuf Hamied has been appointed as one of the
member of the United Nations (un) high-level panel on health
technology innovation and access. The panel consists of 16 eminent
individuals with a deep knowledge and understanding of the public
health, human rights and legal issues associated with access to
treatment etc. The panel will be co-chaired by former president of
Switzerland ruth dreifuss and former president of botswana festus
mogae. Yusuf Hamied, the non-executive chairman of generic
pharmaceutical manufacturer Cipla, offered the world's first
affordable aids medicine at the unprecedented cost of usd 1 per day in
• Ace Indian cueist Pankaj Advani won the 2015 ibsf world snooker
championship. In the final match played at hurghada (Egypt), he
defeated his Chinese opponent zhua xintong by 8-6 score in the
best-of-15 final. With this victory, Pankaj Advani has won the world
snooker championship for record 15 times. He also became the first
person in history of snooker to take the short (6-red) and the long
snooker format in the same calendar year. Earlier in September 2015,
he had won the 2015 ibsf world billiards championship. Presently he is
ranked world number 1 in 6-red snooker and world team billiards.
• Harshavardhan neotia, chairman of Ambuja Neotia group has been
elected as president of ficci for 2016. He will take over from the
incumbent Jyotsna Suri, who is the chairperson and managing director
of Bharat hotels, after the ficci annual general meeting in December
month. He is a member of the Rajasthan chief minister's advisory
council and west Bengal chief minister's core committee on industry.
In 1999, he was conferred with Padma Shri for his outstanding
initiative in social housing.
• The world's second largest diamond ever has been discovered in
Botswana. The 1,111-carat diamond measures 2.5 inches by 2.2 inches.
It is the largest diamond to be discovered anywhere in the world in
more than 100 years. The 3,106-carat Cullinan diamond, recovered from
Pretoria of South Africa in 1905, is widely considered to be the
world's largest gem-quality diamond.
• The second world congress for disaster management was held in
Vishakhapatnam during 19-22 November. It was held in collaboration
with government of Andhra Pradesh and various local, national,
regional and international organizations. It was held six years after
the first congress (held in 2008 in Hyderabad). The congress debated
on the process of implementation of the Sendai framework for disaster
risk reduction 2015-2030, which was adopted at the third United
Nations world conference on disaster risk reduction in March 2015.
• India has won the 8th Asian junior hockey championship by defeating
Pakistan in the final match in Malaysia. Harmanpreet became the
highest scorer with his four goals in the match taking his tournament
tally to 15 goals in the tournament.
• Actress Sonali Bendre shared her life's experiences in her debut
book 'the modern Gurukul: my experiment with parenting'. In the book,
she shared her three principles of parenting which she says will help
find a balance between tradition and modernity, and show how to raise
a child in the digital age.
• On November 18, bbc released a list of 100 most inspiring women from
all over the world. It included seven Indian women from different
walks of life. They are Asha Bhosle (singer), Sania Mirza (tennis
player), Kamini Kaushal (veteran actor), Rimppi Kumari (farmer),
Smriti Nagpal (entrepreneur), Mumtaz shaikh (activist), and Kanika
Tekriwal (entrepreneur). Rimppi kumari is a farmer from Rajasthan, who
took over a 32-acre farm after her father died and she manages it with
• After its initial success with lettuce in august, 2015, Nasa
attempting to grow zinnias on the international space station (ISS).
The zinnias will grow for 60 days, which is twice as long as the first
and second crop of lettuce that grew on the space station. During the
growth cycle, the led lights will be on for 10 hours and off for 14
hours in order to stimulate the plants to flower.
• The union human resource development (HRD) ministry has set up a
13-member expert committee exclusively for promotion of the Sanskrit
language. The committee is headed by n Gopalaswami, the former chief
election commissioner (CEC) and now chancellor of Rashtriya Sanskrit
Vidyapeeth in Tirupati. Other members of the panel include Bibek
Debroy (Niti Aayog member), v v Bhat (former government of India
secretary), Dr Ramadorai (chairman of national skill development
corporation), Ramesh Bharadwaj (professor at Delhi university), Ved
Prakash (UGC chairman) and Chamu Krishna Shastri of the rss-affiliated
Samskrita Bharti. The committee will recommend measures to integrate
the study of the Sanskrit language with other disciplines such as
physics, chemistry, mathematics, medical science and law, and suggest
changes in Sanskrit education in schools and universities and
recommend ways to impart Sanskrit education through modern tools. The
committee is also tasked with draw an action plan to develop the
Sanskrit language in the next 10 years.
• The East Asia summit 215 was held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The
East Asia summit (eas) is a forum held annually by leaders of
countries in the East Asian and south East Asian region. The first
summit was held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 14 December 2005. Eas
meetings are held after annual Asean leaders' meetings.
• French president Francois Hollande will be the chief guest at the
67th republic day parade of january 26, 2016.mr. Francois Hollande
would be the 5th highest dignitary from france to be chief guest of
Indian republic day parade after prime minister Jacques Chirac (1976),
president Valery Giscard d'Estaing (1980), president Jacques Chirac
(1998) and president Nicolas sarkozy (2008).with this invitation,
France now holds distinction of being the guest of honour for the
maximum five times of Indian republic day parade followed by Bhutan
(four times); Mauritius and Ussr/Russia (three times each).
• South Australia has signed a historic sister-state agreement with
Rajasthan state. The agreement would pave new ways to boost investment
and export opportunities between the two states. The agreement is
based on a two-way exchange of research, policy and technical
capabilities. The expertise within South Australia in sustainable
water management will help to further improve water access and
security for businesses and communities in Rajasthan.
• West ham united goalkeeper Aditi Chauhan is the first Indian to be
awarded the Asian woman footballer of the year award in the United
Kingdom. She beat India-born tan vie Hans and Monica Sharma of fulham
foundation fc, and London Bari lfc captain Sabah Mahmud to win the
prestigious award. She was the first Indian footballer from the
women's national team to play competitively in England.
• Veteran journalist Kuldip Nayar was Honoured with 'lifetime
achievement award' for his contribution to journalism at the eighth
edition of the prestigious Ramnath Goenka excellence awards for years
2013 and 2014. He is former editor of the Indian express. During
emergency he was jailed for leading a protest against the excesses of
• Uttar Pradesh has entered the Guinness book of world records for
planting the most number of saplings in one day within a span of eight
hours. On November 7, under the 'clean up, green up' initiative, over
10 lakh saplings were planted at 10 locations in the state.
• Masala bonds are rupee denominated overseas bonds. Masala bonds will
help to internationalize the Indian rupee and also deepen the Indian
financial system. By issuing bonds in rupees, an Indian company is
shielded against the risk of currency fluctuation, typically
associated with borrowing in foreign currency. Besides helping
diversify funding sources, the cost of borrowing could also turn out
to be lower than domestic markets. In 2013, the first masala bonds
were issued by the international finance corporation (ifc), an arm of
the World Bank. Ifc then named them masala bonds to give a local
flavour by calling to mind Indian culture and cuisine.
• The Asian development bank (adb) has pledged to provide 120 million
dollar loan in order to finance cross-border electricity link between
Bangladesh and India under sasec programme. The loan fund would be
used for second Bangladesh-India grid inter connectivity project under
the ambitious south Asia sub-regional economic co-operation (sasec)
• India is conducting the first "south Asian annual disaster
management exercise" (saadmex) – 2015. It is held during 23 November
to 26 November. The four-day long saadmex-2015 is being organized
jointly by ndma, nidm, ndrf and mha. Delegations and rescuers from
each of the eight SAARC nations- India, Maldives, Nepal, Afghanistan,
Bangladesh, Bhutan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are participating in
• Argentina's opposition candidate Mauricio macri has won the
presidential election. His victory marked an end to the left-leaning
and often combative era of president cristina Fernandez, who along
with her late husband and predecessor, nestor kirchner, rewrote the
country's social contract.
• Noted Marathi actor Prashant Damle will be awarded with the master
Dinanath Mangeshkar award in 2016 for outstanding contribution in the
field of theatre, film and music. The prestigious award is given to
personalities from Marathi and Hindi theatre, music and films. The
award was instituted in 1999 by Lata Mangeshkar and her family in the
fond memory of her father. The award is given annually and it
comprises of a cash prize of rs one lakh, a moment and a citation. The
award will be presented to Prashant Damle by Lata Mangeshkar in April
next year on the occasion of the death anniversary of master dinanath.
• T s papola, a noted labour economist passed away recently. From 1987
to 1995, he was advisor with the erstwhile planning commission. He was
a founder-member and former director at the institute for studies in
industrial development (isid) in Delhi; chairman of the giri institute
of development studies, luck now, founder-member of the institute for
human development (ihd), Delhi, and chairman of the fourth state
finance commission of Uttarakhand. He also worked in consultative and
advisory capacities with international organizations such as ilo,
undp, unctad, unido and UNICEF. Dr. Papola specialized in the areas of
labour and employment, industrial economics, regional development,
development planning and enterprise development.
• Novak djokovic form Serbia won record fourth straight ATP world tour
finals with victory against Roger Federer. It is the fifth time in his
career and earlier he had won it in 2008, 2012, 2013 and 2014. With
this win, djokovic surpassed previous record of Ivan Lendl's set in
1987 after he had won his third straight tour finals title. With this
victory, he ends the 2015 tennis season with 11 titles including three
grand slams, taking his total to 10 titles.
• The Madrid headquartered international organization of securities
commissions (iosco) is the worldwide association of national
securities regulatory commissions, such as the securities and exchange
commission in the united states, the sebi in India, and about 100
other similar bodies. The organization's role is to assist its members
to promote high standards of regulation. It also act as a forum for
national regulators to cooperate with each other and other
• Us drugs giant Pfizer inc. Has struck upon a deal to buy Ireland
based allergen for 160 billion dollars making it the biggest
pharmaceuticals merger deal in history of healthcare sector. The
blockbuster merger would create the world's biggest drug maker to be
called Pfizer plc with its headquarters in Dublin, Ireland. Currently
Pfizer Inc is selling flagship pharmaceutical products like Viagra and
cholesterol drug Lipitor, while allergen is best known for selling
anti-wrinkle treatment drug Botox, Alzheimer's drug namenda and
dry-eye medication restasis.
• 'e-lala', an e-commerce portal of confederation of all India
traders (cait) was launched by the union urban development minister m
Venkaiah Naidu. It is aimed at promoting the interests of 5.77 crore
small businesses in the context of rapid expansion of e-commerce in
the country. The portal e-lala seeks to promote b2b and
trader-to-customer transactions in a city and thereby eliminating
middlemen and resulting in reduced cost of goods and services.
• India-born Swati Dandekar has been appointed as the United States
director of the Asian development bank (adb). She was nominated to
this position by us president barack obama and was designated with
rank of an ambassador. She would replace robert m orr who has held
this position since 2010. Swati Dandekar was born in Nagpur,
Maharashtra. Along with her husband arvind, she had migrated to the us
in 1973. Dandekar was the first Indian-born American citizen to win a
state legislature seat in the United States. She was a member of the
Iowa House of Representatives from 2003 to 2009 and was also member of
the Iowa senate from 2009 to 2011. Later, she had served on the Iowa
utilities board from 2011 to 2013 and member of the vision Iowa board
of directors from 2000 to 2003.
• Recently, Russia has signed two agreements with Egypt to finance and
build its first nuclear power plant at Dabaa on the Mediterranean
coast in the northwest of the country. As per one of the agreement,
Russia will extend a loan to Egypt to cover the cost of construction
of the nuclear plant which is expected to be completed by 2022.
• China is planning to build the world's largest animal cloning centre
in the Chinese coastal city of Tianjin in the first half of 2016. The
200 million Yuan facility aims to produce up to one million cloned
calves a year, as well as dogs and critically endangered species. To
feed the china's burgeoning demand for meat, the Tianjin facility also
aims to clone racehorses, sniffer and pet dogs, and also help rescue
endangered species from the brink of extinction.
• India's former long jump world champion Anju bobby George was
appointed as the chairperson of the target Olympic podium scheme
(tops). She will assume the charge in December month this year. The
post of the chairperson was lying vacant after the resignation of
Anurag Thakur. Anju bobby George is presently a member of the tops'
identification committee, which also includes former Indian cricket
captain Rahul Dravid and national badminton coach Pullela Gopichand.
• Writer, columnist and journalist Mahip Singh (85) passed away
recently. His collection of short stories 'Subah ke Phool' was first
published in 1959 and later on more than 20 short stories collections
were published. His famous novels include Ye Bhi Nhi, Bich Ki Dhoop,
and Abhi Shesh Hai. Mahip Singh had been editing literary magazine
'Sanchetna' for the past 45 years. He also established Bhartiya Lekhak
sang than in 1978.
• Recently, India has successfully test-fired its nuclear-capable
Dhanush ballistic missile with a strike range of 350 km from a naval
ship off the Odisha coast. Dhanush is a naval variant of India's
indigenously-developed prithvi missile. The missile is capable of
carrying conventional as well as nuclear payload of 500 kg and can hit
both land and sea-based targets under 350 km range. It has already
been inducted in the Indian armed forces.
• Recently, the union government has reduced the deadline for
completion of flagship Pradhan Mantri gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) for
rural connectivity through all- weather roads from 2022 to 2019. The
annual allocation of the central release for pmgsy works during year
2015-16 also has been increased by 5,000 crore rupees. With this, the
total central allocation to states under pmgsy would now be 15,100
crore rupees. Pmgsy was launched in year 2000 as a centrally sponsored
• Recently, the reserve bank of India (RBI) has granted in-principle
nod to three entities including axis bank for setting up of a trade
receivables discounting system (treds). The treds is aimed at
improving the flow of funds to the msme sector by reducing receivables
realization cycles. The other two entities are mynd solutions pvt.
Ltd., Gurgaon, Haryana and nse strategic investment corporation and
small industries development bank of India, Mumbai.
• Karnataka's dept. Of tourism and state tourism Development
Corporation (kstdc), along with the home department, have launched
'tourist mitra' force. It is a tourist-friendly police force and they
will be deployed at various tourist destinations in the state. They
will work in coordination with the local police tourist destinations
in 13 districts of Karnataka that have been identified for the
deployment of 175 personnel.
• For the first time, Japan aerospace exploration agency and
Mitsubishi heavy industries ltd. Have successfully launched a
commercial satellite into orbit using a Japan-made rocket. The
Mitsubishi heavy-made h-iia rocket carried a Telstar 12 vantage, a
broadcast and telecommunications satellite to be operated by
Ottawa-based telecast. The satellite will provide coverage to areas
including Europe and the Americas. With this launch, Japan is trying
to enter a business dominated by European and Russian companies.
• On November 25, the international day for the elimination of
violence against women, the United Nations (un) has launched its
campaign orange the world. The campaign will be carried out during 16
days from 25 November until December 10, designated as the un's human
rights day. The campaign has adopted the colour orange to symbolize
its goal for a bright and optimistic future that is free from violence
against women and girls. Several monuments across the world are
participating in the campaign. From India, India gate and Delhi metro
are chosen as landmarks for conduct of the campaign.
• A new UN report titled 'the human cost of weather related disasters
by the united nations office for disaster risk reduction', pointed out
that United States was the most-affected country by weather-related
disasters between 1995 and 2015. United States was followed by china,
India, the Philippines, and Indonesia. According to the report, India
was hit by 288 disasters over the last 20 years, third only after the
us (472) and china (441).
• Recently, the reserve bank of India (RBI) has granted 'in principle'
approval to the national payments corporation of India (npci) to
function as the Bharat bill payment central unit (bbpcu) in bbps. The
Bharat bill payment system (bbps) is an integrated bill payment system
and it will function as a tiered structure for operating the bill
payment system in the country with a single brand image providing
convenience of 'anytime anywhere' bill payment to customers. The
present scope of bbps will include utility bill payments, such as,
electricity, water, gas, telephone and direct-to-home (dth). Later,
based on the experience, this would be extended to include other types
of repetitive payments, like school / university fees, municipal taxes
etc. In future.
• Sunil kanoria, vice-chairman of Seri infrastructure finance ltd.,
has taken the charge as president of assoc ham. Kanoria has succeeded
rana kapoor, yes bank managing director and ceo. Sunil Kanoria is also
the joint managing director of srei bnp Paribas, a joint-venture
between srei infrastructure finance limited and bnp Paribas leasing
group, France. He has also worked as member of the working group on
construction for the tenth five-year plan (2002-07) of the planning
commission, government of India.
• Recently, the ministry of social justice & empowerment has launched
several schemes for disabled persons in the country. The schemes are :
Disha (early intervention and school readiness scheme); Vikaas (day
care); Gharaunda (group home for adults); Samarth (respite care);
Niramaya (health insurance scheme); Gyan Prabha (educational support);
Sahyogi (caregiver training scheme); Prerna (marketing assistance);
Sambhav (aids and assisted devices) and badhte kadam (awareness and
community interaction). Sambhav is a scheme to setup additional
resource centers, one each in each city of the country (apart from
Delhi where there is currently a Sambhav centre) with population
greater than 5 million (as per 2011 census), to collate and collect
the aids, software and other form of assistive devices developed with
a provision of display and demonstration of the devices.
• The 12th south Asian games (sag) will be held in Guwahati, Assam and
Shillong, Meghalaya, India in 2016. The government of India in
consultation with the Indian Olympic association has formed the
organizing committee and executive committee for the planning,
management and execution of the games. The first south Asian games
were held in Nepal in 1983 with eight countries participating. The
games are held every two years except for some occasions.
• The world robot conference 2015 was held in Beijing, china from 23rd
to 25th of November. The conference focused on collaborative
innovation and the building of an intelligent society. The event was
organized by the china association for science and technology and the
ministry of industry and information technology (miit).
• The world meteorological organization (wmo) is an intergovernmental
organization with its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, and is a
member of the United Nations development group. It has a membership of
191 member states and territories. The current secretary-general of
wmo is Michel jarraud and the current president is David grimes. The
recent analysis of wmo pointed that 2015 year is very likely to be the
hottest year on record worldwide.
• The Rupay classic card holders are provided with rs. 1,00,000/-
insurance coverage for death due to accidental injury and permanent
disability. Rupay (rupee + payment) is India's first locally designed
and developed debit card offered by national payments corporation of
India (npci). Recently, the government of India has extended the usage
criterion of the rupay debit cards in order to avail of the in-built
insurance cover. Earlier, cardholders had to use the card within 45
days prior to claim the insurance claim. This has now been extended to
• World milk day, established by the food and agriculture organization
(fao) of the United Nations is observed annually on 1st June to
recognize the importance of milk as a global food. It has been
observed on June 1st each year since 2001. In India, the national milk
day is observed on November 26. November 26 marks the birth
anniversary of India's most successful dairy entrepreneur Varghese
kurien, the founder of dairy firm Amul.
• The union territory of Daman and Diu will host the world's longest
beach festival starting december 1. The 75-day festival `festa di diu'
will go on till February 2016.
• The idea of solar alliance was mooted by Indian Prime Minister
Narendra Modi during the India-Africa forum summit held in October
month. The alliance is to be named the international agency for solar
policy and application (in spa) and is aimed at a host of African
nations and others located between tropic of cancer and tropic of
Capricorn. In spa will act as a platform for countries to share
technologies as opposed to relying on costly transfers from the eu and
• The Indian government is considering the plan to buy 36 rafale
fighter aircrafts from France. The deal was announced during Prime
Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Paris in April 2015. India and
France are set to sign the deal for 36 rafale fighter aircrafts on the
eve of French president François Hollande's visit to India for the
republic day celebrations.
• Recently, the food and drug administration (fda) of united tatues
has approved the human consumption of a genetically engineered (ge)
salmon. It marks the first time the fda has authorized the sale of a
genetically engineered (ge) animal as food. The fda said that there
are no biologically relevant differences in the nutritional profile of
ge salmon compared to that of other farm-raised Atlantic salmon.
• Australia and New Zealand have created history by playing first
day-night test match at the Adelaide oval cricket stadium with a pink
kookaburra ball. The first day-night test match was the third match of
the series between Australia and new Zealand played for 2015
trans-Tasman trophy. The idea of playing day-night test matches par
with one day internationals (odis) was mooted by cricket Australia
chief executive James Sutherland. It was approved by international
cricket council (ICC), an apex body for regulating cricket in July
• The 12th world robot olympiad-2015 was held in Doha, Qatar. The
theme of this year's world robot Olympiad was robot explorers. The
13th world robot Olympiad will be held in New Delhi during November,
2016 for the first time. It will be organized by national council of
science museums (ncsm) with India stem foundation (isf).
• Switzerland's researchers have created a lightest form of gold
consisting of 98% air, 20-carat gold, and milk protein. The new gold
aero gel is made almost entirely of air while retaining the regular
metallic sheen of its regular form. The new form of gold has a range
of curious properties that give it potential far beyond the Jewellery
• Distinguished Tamil scholar and historian of south India and south
Asia, Noboru Karashima from Japan passed away in Tokyo. He was 82. His
research has rewritten the economic and social history of medieval
south India and had published number of writings on them. He also had
played a critical role in developing indo-Japan cultural ties. His use
of statistical techniques to distil information from a mass of
inscriptions was his seminal contribution to south Indian history.
• American decathlete Ashton Eaton was named as the international
association of athletics federations (IAAF) male athlete of the year
for 2015 after breaking the world record to win the world title. Eaton
won the award ahead of Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt. Genzebe dibaba of
Ethiopia won the female award after breaking the 1500 meters world
record in July in Monaco.
• As a part of its global overhauling, the hsbc holding is shutting
down its private banking operations in India. The bank would offer its
private banking clients the choice to move to hsbc premier, the bank's
global retail banking and wealth management platform.
• Under the Bhavishya online system, progress of a particular pension
case can be tracked by the individuals. The administrative authorities
will also use it for the pension preparatory procedure and
subsequently provide retirement benefit and monthly pension after
retirement. The system will enable a retiring employee to keep himself
informed about the progress of his pension process case through sms or
• Indian-origin South African freedom fighter Ahmed kathrada (86) has
been awarded the freedom of the city of Cape Town. He is the sixth
such recipient of the award. He was a close confidante of South
Africa's first black president and global anti-apartheid leader Nelson
Mandela. The other recipients of the honour include nelson Mandela,
Archbishop Desmond tutu, and us president barrack Obama and his wife
Michelle. Three years ago, kathrada also received the freedom of the
city of Johannesburg.
• According to the Salim Ali bird count conducted by bnhs in
association with bird count India, India is home to 514 species of
birds. Maharashtra state ranks first with a total of 123 lists,
followed by Kerala with 59 lists and Karnataka and Tamil Nadu each
with 40 lists. Of the 514 species of birds spotted during the bird
count 30 species were from the iucn red list of threatened birds 2015.
White-rumped vulture was the only bird spotted from the 'critically
• Dominica-born British lawyer Patricia Scotland (60) has been elected
as the new secretary general of the commonwealth. She becomes the
first woman and also first British citizen to be elected as
secretary-general of the 53-member commonwealth bloc's history. She
will succeed Kamalesh Sharma from India and enter into the office on 1
April 2016 for four-year term i.e. Till 2020. The commonwealth
secretary-general is the head of the commonwealth secretariat which is
the central body that has served the Commonwealth of Nations.
Commonwealth secretariat was established in 1965 and responsible for
representing the commonwealth publicly. Its headquarter is at
Marlborough house in London.
• Recently, Kerala cabinet has approved to set up an NRI commission.
With this, Kerala becomes the 2nd state after Punjab to have such a
body. The nri commission will be a quasi judicial body and it will
address all issues of the Diaspora including fake recruitments as well
as disputes over properties, and investment. The commission will be
headed by a retired high court judge and the members will comprise a
retired Indian administrative service officer, two representatives of
the kerala diaspora and a state government official of the rank of a
• The advance pricing agreements (apa) programme was introduced in the
income-tax act, 1961 in 2012. The apa scheme seeks to provide
certainty to taxpayers in the field of transfer pricing through an
agreement in advance. Such agreements are entered into by the cbdt
with the approval of the central government, with the tax payers on
the transfer price of international transactions between associated
• In memory of 13/11 terror attack in France, the west Bengal
government has planned to construct a 55-metre replica of Eiffel tower
in Kolkata. It will take three years to complete the structure. The
replica is going to be a part of the "seven wonders of the world"
theme-park at the Eco Park in Rajarhat, Kolkata. The list of "wonders"
replicated at the park include the Taj Mahal from India, christ the
redeemer from brazil, chichen itza from Mexico, Petra in Jordan, the
great wall of china, machu picchu in Peru and the coliseum in Rome.
Kolkata already has a scaled down version of the big ben clock.
• China's Qinghai province plans to build the world's first salt lake
data centre. It will serve domestic resource planning and provide
technical support to other countries. China has more than thousand
salt lakes, located mainly in Qinghai and Xinxiang.
• Recently, israel has successfully tested barak-8 missile, an
advanced surface-to-air missile. It will play a crucial role in
securing the israel's offshore gas fields. The missile is being
jointly developed by the India's drdo, Israel aerospace industries
(iai), Israel's administration for the development of weapons and
technological infrastructure, elta systems and other companies.
• Nuclear suppliers group (nsg) is a group of 48 nuclear supplier
countries that seeks to contribute to the non-proliferation of nuclear
weapons through the implementation of two sets of guidelines for
nuclear exports and nuclear-related exports. Presently India is not a
member of the group.
• Indian-origin Atonio Costa, the leader of Portugal's socialist party
is the prime minister of Portugal. Recently, he was appointed as pm by
President Anibal Cavaco Silva and president has tasked him to form a
new government due to political instability caused by an inconclusive
2015 general election results. Antonio Costa was born in Lisbon,
Portugal. By profession he is lawyer. He traces his paternal roots to
Goa (India) and is son of Orlando Costa, an accomplished poet and
writer. His grandfather, Luis Afonso Maria da Costa hailed from Goa.
• Nri billionaire and philanthropist Manoj Bhargava has unveiled an
electricity-generating hybrid bicycle called 'free electric'. The
bicycle converts human mechanical energy into electricity. Based on
the usage, the device can provide up to 24 hours of electricity after
an hour of peddling. It is to be priced between rs 12,000 and rs
15,000. The device is meant to provide an affordable and clean source
of electricity to the economically weaker sections in India. The
vehicle was designed and developed in the us. It will be produced in
India under licence by companies chosen by Bhargava. Initially, the
device will be introduced in Uttarakhand and later will distributed
across India. Bhargava became fame with his energy drink '5-hour
energy' in 2004. He also started the 'billions in change' initiative
to finance development and commercialization of technologies to help
• The first edition of Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) graduate
employability rankings has placed IIT Kharagpur and IIT Bombay among
the top 100 institutes in the world. IIT Kharagpur ranked at 77 and
IIT Bombay ranked at 93. The top 3 universities in this ranking are
Stanford University, Massachusetts institute of technology (mit) and
• Indian shuttler P V Sindhu has won the 2015 Macau open grand prix
gold badminton tournament in the women's single category. She has won
this title for the third consecutive time after she had won it in 2013
and 2014. Overall this was PV Sindhu's fifth title of in her career
and first title of the 2015 season. Her other four individual titles
are Indonesia international (2011), Malaysia masters (2013) and Macau
open for consecutive two times in 2013 and 2014.
• Indian-origin author Priya par mar's novel – 'Vanessa and her
sister' has been named by New York Times in its annual prestigious
list of 100 most notable books of 2015. The novel is about acclaimed
painter Vanessa bell and her more famous sister English writer
Virginia Woolf. The novel is constructed around an invented diary and
• The Mahatma Phule Samata award 2015 was given to author Arundhati
Roy. The award is instituted by the Mahatma Phule Samata Parishad
(mpsp). Arundhati Roy is best known for her novel the god of small
things, which won the man booker prize for fiction in 1997. She is
also a political activist involved in human rights and environmental
• China will host the brics media summit 2015 from December 1. The
theme for the meeting is 'innovation, development, cooperation and
trust' and it will be attended by leaders of 25 media groups from
Brazil, Russia, India, china and South Africa (brics). The meeting was
proposed by the Xinhua news agency of china. The summit will be
jointly organized by Brazil Communication Company, Russia today
international news agency, Xinhua news agency, the Hindu group and
South Africa's independent media.
• The international maritime organization (imo), formed in 1959, is
the specialized agency of United Nations responsible for improving
maritime safety and preventing pollution from ships. Its headquarters
are located at London, United Kingdom. The imo has 171 member states
and three associate members.
• The enable makeathon is a project initiated by the international
committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and its partners to develop
affordable assistive devices for persons with disabilities living in
rural areas. It is a 60-day programme from November 2015 to January
2016. 'Accessible India campaign' is also one of the partners in the
• The 'lived anomaly' is released by the centre for science and
environment (cse). The report highlighted the problems faced by the
Indian agriculture system. The 'lived anomaly' report also highlighted
the need for urgent reforms in the agrarian sector as there is an
expected increase in the frequency of extreme weather events. Sunita
Narain is the present director- general of the centre for science and
• The "second international conference on ramlila : a festival
celebrating the masterpieces of intangible heritage of humanity" was
organized by the Indira Gandhi national centre for the arts (IGNCA)
under ministry of culture in new Delhi from November 23 – 29, 2015.
The 'first international conference on ramlila' was held in Trinidad &
Tobago in 2013. The festival was organized under the ignca's ongoing
programme titled-'living traditions of ramkatha and Mahabharata'.
• Recently, the second anti-submarine warfare (asw) corvette INS
kadmatt was handed over to Indian navy at Kolkata. It is a kamorta
class corvette and is built by garden reach shipbuilders and engineers
limited (grse). The name of the ship is derived from kadmat island
located in the Lakshadweep group of islands. Grse is tasked to build 4
asw corvette class ships for Indian navy under the strategic p-28
project. Ins kamorta was the first in this class to be handed over to
the Indian navy in 2014.
• The government has advanced the dates for implementation of the bs-v
and bs-vi norms for the automobile sector by three years to address
the deteriorating air quality. The bs-v norms will come into effect
from April 2019 as against the earlier timeline of April 2022 and
bs-vi norms will come into effect from April 2021, as against April
2024. Currently, India follows bs-iv norms in many cities and bs iv
will be extended to the entire country by April 2017. Bharat stage
(bs) norms, based on European regulations, are emission standards
decided by the government to regulate the amount of air pollutants
• In the recently held commonwealth summit in Malta, India and three
other countries have taken the initiative to establish commonwealth
trade finance facility. The other three countries are Sri Lanka, Malta
and Mauritius. The facility will be aimed at boosting trade and
investment flows, particularly for small and developing countries of
the commonwealth. The four countries have signed the declaration of
intent as anchor investors. The fund is voluntary in nature and it
hopes to attract a start-up capital of $ 20 million.
• The international cricket council (ICC) has suspended West Indies
off-spinner Sunil Narine from bowling in international cricket with an
immediate effect. The ICC took a decision after an independent
assessment found that his bowling action illegal after the 3rd ODI
match of West Indies against Sri Lanka in Pallekele in November 2015.
The assessment revealed that all variations of his deliveries exceeded
the 15-degree limit. Narine can apply for re-assessment after
modifying his action. Currently, he is the no. 1 ranked bowler in the
ICC rankings for odis and t20is.
• Andy Murray led Great Britain have won the 2015 Davis cup for first
time since 1936 and for the 10th time in the competition's 115-year
history. Great Britain tennis team defeated Belgium team in the finals
to win the 104th edition of the competition. The Davis cup is the
premier international team event in men's tennis organized by the
international tennis federation (itf). It was established in 1900 as a
tennis challenge between Great Britain and the United States. Since
then, it is contested annually between teams from competing countries
in a knock-out format. United States has won the tournament for record
32 times. The women's equivalent of the Davis cup is the fed cup.
Australia, we and Czech Republic are the only three countries that
have won both Davis cup and fed cup titles in the same year.
• Recently, six authors of Indian-origin have been shortlisted for
this year's dsc prize for south Asian literature. It includes Neel
Mukherjee (author of the lives of others), Mirza Waheed (author of the
book of gold leaves), Akhil Sharma (author of family life), Kr Meera
(author of hang woman), Anuradha roy (author of sleeping on Jupiter)
and raj Kamal Jha (author of she will build him a city).
• The ministry of overseas Indian affairs (MOIA) has launched an
online quiz programme titled – 'Bharat Ko Janiye'. The quiz is
targeted for the Indian Diaspora. The quiz is intended to create
awareness about India's rich cultural heritage and its diversity. It
also educate about India's progress in various fields like, science &
technology, manufacturing etc. The quiz is open for both pios and nris
between the age group of 18 – 35 years.
• The Mashreq bank is based in Dubai, United Arab emirates. Recently,
the bank has appointed Som Subroto, an alumnus of IIT Delhi and IIM
Ahmadabad as the head of the mashreq's retail banking group.
• Ethiopia's Birhanu legese and Kenya's Cynthia limo have won the 2015
delhi half marathon in men's and women's categories respectively. In
this eighth edition of marathon around 34,000 athletes and amateur
runners from different parts of the world had participated. From
India, Nitendra Singh Rawat and Lalita Babar topped in the men's and
women's category respectively.
• The cairns group is a unique coalition of 20 agricultural exporting
nations lobbying for agricultural trade liberalization. The 20
countries include Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, brazil, Canada,
Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Indonesia, Malaysia, new
Zealand, Pakistan, Paraguay, Peru, the Philippines, south Africa,
Thailand, Uruguay, and Vietnam. The coalition attempts to present a
common front in multilateral trade negotiations at the world trade
organization (WTO). The cairns group was formed in august 1986, when
the Australian government initiated the formation of a group and
organized the inaugural meeting in the city of cairns, Australia.
• A bond is a debt instrument with which a company/organization raises
money from investors. A green bond is very similar but the only
difference is that the issuer of a green bond publicly states that
capital being raised is used for funding of 'green' projects, which
typically include those relating to renewable energy. Recently, Sebi
said the norms for green bonds will be in line with the requirements
recommended by the international capital market association (ICMA).
• Anirban Lahiri is an Indian professional golfer. He currently plays
on the European tour, Asian tour, and pga tour. Presently, he is
placed at 39th position in the world golfer rankings.