3 August 2016

Rajasthan becomes first state to approve sewage & waste water policy

Rajasthan has become the first state in the country to approve sewage and waste water policy. The first of its kind policy was approved by the State Cabinet meeting presided by Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje in Jaipur.

Key Facts 

Under this policy, all district headquarters, heritage cities, and cities in the state which have more than one lakh population will be included. Waste water treated under it will be used in irrigation and agricultural work. The requirement of next 30 years will be covered in this poilcy. It will be compulsory for every house in the state to connect with sewage system in those cities which have 100% sewage system in next five years.

Pushpa Kamal Dahal elected as 39th Prime Minister of Nepal

 Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist Chairperson (CPN-MC) Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ (61) was elected as the 39th Prime Minister of Nepal He was the sole claimant to the post of prime minister after then Prime Minister K P Oli had resigned in July 2016 following political turmoil. He secured 363 in favour and 210 against. He will be second Prime Minister of Nepal under the newly adopted secular, republic and federal Constitution. This will be his second stint as the Prime Minister of Nepal after he had served earlier from 2008 to 2009.

Then Prime Minister K P Oli had tendered his resignation after two key ruling alliance partners -Madhesi People’s Rights Forum-Democratic (MPRFD) and Rastriya Prajatantra Party  (RPP) had withdrawn support to the no-confidence motion tabled against him by the Nepali Congress and the CPN-Maoist Centre.
About Pushpa Kamal Dahal 

  • Born on 11 December 1954 in Dhikur Pokhari, Nepal. 
  • He is also known as Prachanda. He is chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist-Centre) [CPN (M-C)].
  •  He led a guerrilla war against the government and had launched a communist insurgency in 1996.
  • He is also widely known by his nom de guerre “Prachanda”, a name he went by during his guerrilla days.

7th meeting of SAARC Immigration Authorities held in Islamabad

The seventh meeting of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Immigration Authorities was held in Islamabad, Pakistan. Pakistan’s Director General Immigration and Passports Usman A. Bajwa was unanimously elected as Chairman had chaired the meeting. 

Key Highlights of meeting 
  • It reviewed different areas to maximize the potential of visa exemption scheme launched among the member countries in 1992. 
  • It also deliberated on development of security software for SAARC visa exemption scheme (SVES) and immigration matters.
  •  This software would help to transform the existing manual system of the scheme into an online visa application system. 
  • It will have a central database that will provide all member states with real-time and secure information.

Union Cabinet approves signing of Air Services Agreement between India and Lao

The Union Cabinet has given its approval for signing of new Air Services Agreement (ASA) between India and Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR). Decision in this regard was taken in the union cabinet meeting chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi.

 Key Facts

  •  ASA is the basic legal framework for any air operation between the two countries 
  • Under the agreement, the designated airlines of the two countries will have equal and fair opportunity to operate the agreed air services on specified routes. 
  • The Agreement is expected to spur greater investment, trade, tourism and cultural exchange between two countries and also bring developments in the civil aviation sector.
  • It will provide enabling environment for seamless and enhanced air connectivity by providing commercial opportunities to carriers of both sides ensuring greater safety and security.

ISRO all set to launch IIT-B's satellite ‘Pratham’ from Sriharikota space centre in September 

·        IIT-B's starry dreams will finally take off next month, after a nine-year wait.

·        The institute's 10kg student satellite, Pratham, will be launched by Isro's four-stage Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota in September.

·        Pratham will piggy back with Isro's main satellite, ScatSat, and few other satellites. Pratham, first conceived in 2007, was dogged by delays for a variety of reasons, upsetting its launch schedule.

Nobel Prize-winning Egyptian chemist Ahmed Zewail passes away

·        The Egyptian-born Nobel-winning scientist Ahmed Zewail has died in the United States. He was 70.

·        Mr Zewail won the Nobel Chemistry Prize in 1999 for his pioneering work in femtochemistry, the study of chemical reactions in ultra-short time scales.

·        A professor at the California Institute of Technology, he was a Science Advisor to President Obama and the first Arab Scientist to win the Nobel Prize

2 August 2016

Wrestler Narsingh Yadav gets NADA’s clean chit in doping case

The National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) has given clean chit to wrestler Narsingh Yadav in the doping case. With this he can participate in 2016 Rio Olympics. Narsingh Yadav was given clean chit after the NADA disciplinary panel exonerated him from charges of violating anti-doping rules of NADA. It was found that the wrestler was a victim of sabotage done by a competitor and there is no fault and negligence on Narsingh Yadav’s part in case of doping.


  • Narsingh Yadav had tested positive for a banned anabolic steroid methandienone in the out-of-competition doping tests conducted by NADA. 
  • Both of his test samples were tested positive for methandienone after they were collected at the National camp in Sonepat, Haryana. 
  • After this incident, he was replaced by Parveen Rana to save India’s quota in 2016 Olympics in the 74kg freestyle category of Wrestling.

Novak Djokovic wins 2016 ATP Toronto Masters

Novak Djokovic (World no 1) from Serbia has won the 2016 ATP Toronto Masters also known as the Rogers club title in the men’s single category. In the final match, he defeated Kei Nishikori (World no 6) of Japan by 6-3, 7-5 score. It was Djokovic’s his 66th career title and fourth Canadian title (won in 2007, 2011 and 2012).

About Rogers Cup

  •  The Rogers Cup is also known as Canadian Open/Masters. It is held in Toronto (for men) and Montreal (for women). 
  • The men’s competition is a Masters 1000 event on the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) tour.
  •  The women’s competition is a Premier 5 tournament on the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) tour. The competition is played on hard courts

Parliament passes NIT, Science Education & Research (Amendment) Bill, 2016

The Parliament has passed the National Institutes of Technology, Science Education and Research (Amendment) Bill, 2016. The bill was first passed in Lok Sabha in July 2016 and later in Rajya Sabha in August 2016. Now the bill will go for presidential assent as per Article 111 of Constitution. 

Key Facts 
  • The Bill seeks to establish the National Institute of Technology (NIT), Andhra Pradesh as an institute of national importance. 
  • The NIT, Andhra Pradesh will be established under the National Institutes of Technology, Science Education and Research (NITSER) Act, 2007. 
  • The NIT will be deemed as an institute of national importance status as on August 20, 2015, the day on which the Union government approved its establishment.

Anant Maheshwari appointed as President of Microsoft India

Technocrat Anant Maheshwari was appointed as the President of Microsoft India, a subsidiary of US based software giant Microsoft Inc. He will join Microsoft India in September 2016 and will take over operations of the company from January 2017. 
He will succeed Bhaskar Pramanik who retires in March 2017. In his new role in Microsoft India, Maheshwari will be responsible for all of Microsoft’s product, service and support offerings across India.
 About Anant Maheshwari
  •  He holds electrical & electronics engineering degree and a master’s degree in economics from Birla Institute of Technology & Science (BITS), Pilani. 
  • Prior to this appointment he was working as the President of Honeywell India. He was responsible for Honeywell India’s operations in three strategic business groups viz. automation and control solutions and aerospace. 
  • In last 12 years, he had held various business leadership roles in Honeywell including that of managing director.