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Important Current Affairs of 7th June

NATIONAL:

India-Marshall Islands tax data pact notified.

• The union government notified an agreement with the Marshall Islands a country of volcanic islands and coral atolls in the Pacific Ocean, for the exchange of banking and company information for tax purposes.

• It comes under tax evasion and tax avoidance.

It is called as tax information exchange agreement (TIEA)

They allow mutual cooperation between the two countries by providing an effective framework for exchange of information in tax matters.

• The agreement (India-Marshall Islands TIEA) between the Indian government and the government of the Marshall Islands was signed on March 18, 2016, at Majuro, the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

• The bilateral agreement is based on international standards of tax transparency and exchange of information and enables the sharing of information on request.

Gujarat topped the country with annual fish production of 7.8 lakh tonnes.

• Gujarat topped the country with annual fish production of 7.8 lakh tonnes, followed by Tamil Nadu (7.02 lakh tonnes) and Kerala (6.43 lakh tonnes) according to the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI).

Tamil Nadu:

• Kanniyakumari topped in the Tamil Nadu state annual fish production.

• Ramanathapuram has emerged as the second topper in the Tamil Nadu state in annual fish production. It has recorded 1.46 lakh tonnes during 2018.

Nagapattinam stands third highest fish production district to have recorded 91,186 tonnes. Thoothukudi stands fourth by recording 70,965 tonnes followed by Cuddalore (62,525 tonnes) and Chennai (55,707 tonnes).

Report:

• The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) released the district wise marine fish landing data for the year 2018. The Fisheries Resources Assessment Division (FRAD) of CMFRI had collected random sampling data across the state and finalized the provisional figure. The data was collected by the fisheries department by employing the multi-stage cluster sampling method and the figures varied.

Fish export in 2018:

• While Cuttlefish (Cephalopods), prawns, Pomfrets, crabs, and fishes belonging to the family of Percidae were exported, the protein-rich Sardines and Anchovies were sold in the local markets.

• According to CMFRI report, the Fish production for the year 2018 was estimated at 3.49 million tonnes at the all India level.

Rajnath Singh to chair the Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.

• Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is to chair the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs in the second term of the NDA government. Decisions on all the parliament matters will be taken by the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.

• He is also a part of the Cabinet Committee on Political Affairs, the all-important panel on political affairs which is headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. All important political decisions in the ruling dispensation will be taken by the panel.

• Apart from these 4 committees, he is also a member of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) and the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS). In total, he is now a part of six key panels of the government.

• In the last government, Rajnath Singh headed the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.

Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan reviews status of Nipah Virus disease in New Delhi.

• Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan reviewed the status of Nipah Virus disease in New Delhi.

• A total of 316 contacts are being followed up on a daily basis.

• One positive case admitted in Ernakulam is now conscious and having a mild fever and six symptomatic contacts have been admitted in the quarantine facility at the Medical College and all the samples were found to be negative.

• A Sample from one symptomatic contact sent to NIV Lab.

• Strategic Health Operation Centre (SHOC) at NCDC has been activated and the activities are coordinated.

• 40 calls have been attended at SHOC- NCDC regarding Nipah information.

District Control Room has been set up in the Collector Office (Helpline No. 04842425200)

Joint Commissioner(Livestock Health) deployed two experts to Ernakulam, Kerala to support local Animal Husbandry Department in the investigation.

• On the basis of the epidemiological investigation, a team from NIV Pune and Animal Husbandry are investigating bats and other animals in the vicinity of his (confirmed case)residence during the possible time of transmission of infection.

About Nipah Virus

• It is a genus of RNA viruses belongs to the family Paramyxoviridae and order Mononegavirales containing five established species.

• Henipaviruses are naturally harbored by pteropid fruit bats and microbats of several species

Scientific name: Henipavirus

Rank: Genus

Higher classification: Paramyxoviridae.

INTERNATIONAL:

Taiwan proposed deal to buy tanks from the US.

• Taiwan plans to propose a deal to buy tanks and portable missiles from the U.S. This proposal by Taiwan drew an angry rebuke from China. Taiwan’s Defence Ministry requested the US for 108 M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks, more than 1,500 Javelin and TOW anti-tank missiles, and 250 shoulder-fired Stinger anti-aircraft missiles in the proposal formally.

• The U.S. government, on the other hand, has given Congress informal notification of its plan to sell the equipment in a deal worth $2 billion.

One-China policy:

• China has asked the U.S. to understand that its decision to sell arms to Taiwan might cause problems between China and Taiwan as it is expected Taiwan to abide by the One China principle.

• One-China policy says that there is only one country of China with the official name of China, despite the fact that there are two governments namely the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (ROC).

• Despite being ruled separately since the end of a civil war in 1949, China still views Taiwan as its territory and has vowed to take the island, by force if necessary.

• If China announces war on Taiwan, the country outgunned in terms of troop numbers and firepower. Hence, Taiwan is in need to upgrade much of its equipment. Its current tank force consists of around 1,000 CM 11 Brave Tiger and M60A3 tanks, a technology that is increasingly obsolete.

Past Taiwan and US deal:

• The U.S. government announced plans in 2018 to sell spare parts worth $330 million to Taiwan for its U.S. made F-16 fighter jets and C-130 military transport planes. Taiwan has also submitted a formal request to Washington for new fighter jets to upgrade its air force but the US had not made any open response yet.

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

RBI reduces interest rates by 25 basis points to 5.75 percent.

• The Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) reduced interest rates by 25 basis points to 5.75% with immediate effect amid slowing economic growth and rising global uncertainty, for the 3rd time in a row.

RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das announced it in the second bi-monthly monetary policy statement for 2019-20.

Purpose:

• The reduction is expected to bring down the EMIs on home and auto loans, and reduce the debt repayment burden on corporates.

What is repo rate?

• It is the rate at which the central bank of a country, that is RBI, lends money to commercial banks in the event of any shortfall of funds. The monetary authorities use this to control inflation. The banks can borrow money for about 7 to 14 days from the Reserve Bank of India.

Policy rates and Reserve ratios:

Policy Repo Rate: 5.75%

Reverse Repo Rate: 5.50%

Marginal Standing Facility Rate: 6.00%

Bank Rate: 6.00%

CRR: 4%

SLR: 19.00%

HDFC Bank appoints new auditor after RBI's action against EY firm.

• HDFC Bank has cancelled the re-appointment of SR Batliboi & Co, a member firm of EY, after the RBI restricted it from auditing commercial banks for a year. India's largest bank by market value has appointed MSKA & Associates as its new statutory auditor. RBI said lapses have been identified in a statutory audit assignment carried out by SR Batliboi.

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Important Current Affairs 6th June

NATIONAL:

Indian football team Baichung Bhutia congratulated Chhetri becoming India's most-capped Player.

• Former India skipper Bhaichung Bhutia congratulated Sunil Chhetri and became India's most capped international player with 108 appearances.

He overtook his mentor Bhutia's record of 107 matches and captained India in the King's Cup opener against Curacao.

He scored the goal for his side in the 31st minute from a spot kick for his 69th goal.

India ranked 101.

The 82nd ranked Caribbean island nation two players associated with English Premier League and some others in European leagues.

They scored three goals in the space of 18 minutes through Roly Bonevacia, Elson Hooi and Leandro Bacuna.

India will play with the losing team of the match between Thailand and Vietnam in the third-place play-off.

About Bhaichung Bhutia

Current team: East Bengal F.C. (Forward)

Awards: Padma Shri, Arjuna Award for Football

Govt. set up a 10 member Cabinet Committee on Employment and Skill Development.

• The government set up a 10-member Cabinet Committee on Employment and Skill Development on 5 June. The committee is one of two Cabinet committees that are set up to rise the economic growth and tackle unemployment.

Members of the committee:

The Committee will be chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The committee includes:

Home Minister Amit Shah

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal

Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar

Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’

Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

Minister Skill and Entrepreneurship Mahendra Nath Pandey

Ministers of State Santosh Kumar Gangwar (Labour)

Ministers of State Hardeep Singh Puri (Housing and Urban Affairs

Reason for the formation of the committee:

The committee was set up because the Employment data for 2017-18 which was released on May 31 after the Lok Sabha elections reported that the country's unemployment rate has risen to 6.1% in the period. This is the highest in 45 years.

Fall in Gross Domestic Product (GDP):

• It is expected that the committee on economic growth will prepare a road map to bring the economy back on the growth trajectory as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) fell to 5.8% in the last quarter of 2018-19. It is the lowest since 2014. The GDP growth for 2018-19 was 6.8%, against the target of 7.2%.

• The fall in growth is the result of the dip in the performance of the core sectors of the economy, as the eight core sectors recorded a growth of just 2.6 % in April, compared with 4.6% in the same month in 2018. According to the government's data, the country’s economic growth saw the third straight fall in January-March quarter in 2019.

Note:

•The eight core sectors are coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, fertilizers, steel, cement, and electricity.

Pramila Jayapal as first Indian-American woman to preside over US House.

• Pramila Jayapal first Indian American woman to preside over US house.

She is the first elected to Congress in 2016 preside over the House and served the most diverse Congress in the nation's history.

• She presided over the House as a Temporary Speaker.

• The House Democrats rotate for the ceremonial position of presiding over the chamber.

She became the first South Asian American woman to preside over the US House of Representatives.

• A record number of 17 Asian Americans serve in Congress with 14 in the House and three in the Senate house.

About Pramila Jayapal

• Pramila Jayapal is an American politician and activist from the State of Washington

She serves as the U.S. Representative from Washington's 7th congressional district.

•It includes most of Seattle as well as suburban areas of King County.

Nirmala Sitharaman to attend G20 Finance Ministers Meeting in Japan.

• Finance Minister Shri Nirmala Sitharaman attend the two-day meeting of G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank governors in Japan on June 8 and 9

• It is the first overseas visit of Sitharaman as the Finance Minister.

• She took charge as full time finance minister last week.

• The main aim is to focus on the risks and challenges of overseas trade and investment in infrastructure which are faced by our country.

• Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) submit a report on taxation, urging greater cooperation among nations.

•India actively participating in the OECD-G20 efforts to create a global consensus on the taxation of the digital economy.

About G 20

Chairperson: Shinzō Abe

Founder: Group of Seven

Founded: 26 September 1999

Purpose  :  Bring together systemically important industrialized and developing economies to discuss key issues in the global economy.

INTERNATIONAL:

Report says sharp 10 percent decline in the approval rate of H 1B visa by the US.

• US authorities said that there was a sharp 10% decline in the approval of H-1B visas by the U.S. in 2018, which is popular among highly skilled Indian IT professionals. The experts attributed to the aggressive policies of the Trump administration to clamp down on the use of the work visa programme.

What is H-1b Visa?

• H-1B visa programme is the main vehicle through which US employers can sponsor skilled foreign workers for admission. It is a non-immigrant visa that allows U.S. companies to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise.

10% decline in approval rate:

• In 2018, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approved 3,35,000 H-1B visas, both new and renewable. This was 10% less than the 3,73,400 visas approved in the previous fiscal year of 2017, according to the USCIS’ annual statistical report. The approval rate of H-1B declined from 93% in 2017 to 85% in 2018.

• For the first six months of the fiscal year 2019, the overall approval rate of the H-1B visa for new and continuing visas continued to stay to 79% by the end of March, down from 85% last year.

Buy American and Hire American:

• “Buy American and Hire American” executive order which was signed by Trump in April 2017, seeks to create higher wages and employment rates for U.S. workers. It also seeks to protect their economic interests by rigorously enforcing and administering our immigration laws. • It also directed to advance policies to help ensure H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid beneficiaries.

Forbes magazine named Rihanna as the worlds richest female musician.

• Forbes magazine has named Rihanna as the world’s richest female musician. Rihanna's Fenty Beauty brand business endeavors have officially made her the richest female musician in the world. Her worth is estimated at $600m (£472m) which includes revenues made from her fashion and beauty lines in addition to those from her music career.

• Forbes reported that the French luxury brand LVMH backs Rihanna’s lucrative cosmetics company, Fenty Beauty. Fenty beauty was launched in 2017. It is worth more than £3bn, from which Rihanna has earned $570m. 

• In 2012, Rihanna founded the Clara Lionel Foundation. The trust supports health and education efforts in impoverished communities around the world. Harvard University, in February 2017, she was named humanitarian of the year.

• Top 5 in Forbes’ list of richest female musicians:

• The other singers in Forbes’s list of the top five richest female musicians are:

• Madonna stands second place ($570m)

• Céline Dion stands third ($450m)

• Beyoncé and Barbra Streisand tied in fourth ($400m)

• Taylor Swift stands sixth ($360m).

• Forbes other rankings:

• Forbes has also name Kardashian scion Kylie Jenner as America’s youngest self-made billionaire.

• It has named Jay-Z as the world’s first billionaire rapper as his worth is estimated at $1bn.

China launched a space rocket from the sea for the first time on 5 June.

• China launched a space rocket from the sea for the first time on 5 June 2019.  With this China will be the third nation to successfully demonstrate the ability to launch satellites into orbit from a floating platform following the U.S. and Russia.

In the operation, March 11, a Long rocket was launched from a ship in the Yellow Sea.

Aim:

• The first ever seaborne launch technology aims to meet the growing launch demand of low inclination satellites. It is also expected to help China provide launch services for countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative

Payloads:

• The rocket carried two experimental satellites and five commercial satellites. The experimental satellites will monitor ocean winds to set up  all-weather monitoring of ocean wind fields and improve typhoon monitoring and accuracy of the weather forecast in China. It was built by the China Academy of Space Technology in Beijing.

Experimental satellites:

1. Bufeng-1A

2. Bufeng-1B

Commercial satellites:

1. Earth-imaging cubesat - 1

2. Tianqi-3, an experimental communications satellite

3,4. China's first Ka-band communications satellites- Two satellites

5. New satellite for China's Jilin-1 remote-sensing satellite constellation

The seaborne test along with its ambitious plans for missions to the moon and beyond has made China a major space power.

China's space exploration:

• China is the first nation to land a rover on the far side of the moon. It also plans to build a research base on the lunar surface. The country also plans to send a probe to Mars and build a space station in Earth orbit.

• In 2003, China became the third nation to have the capability of launching humans into space.

China is one of the leading country in launching a number of satellites from its launch stations on land.

Russia launched first Arctic train service.

• Russia launched its first ever tourist train traveling through Russia's Arctic region to Norway set off from Saint Petersburg station with 91 passengers aboard for the inaugural trial journey.

• The train named "Zarengold" ("The Tsars gold" in German) complete with two restaurant cars travel from Saint Petersburg through  Petrozavodsk, the historic town of Kem and Murmansk.

The duration of the trip will be 11 days

• The inaugural function consists of 91 tourists from seven countries including the US, Germany, Norway and Russia.

About Russia

Capital: Moscow

Currency: Russian ruble

President: Vladimir Putin

AGREEMENTS AND MOU's:

India and France to carry out Garuda, a two week long mega air exercise.

• Indian Air Force and French Air Force have planned to carry out Garuda, a two-week-long mega air exercise, beginning on July 1 in France. The aim is to boost the military-to-military ties between the two countries. A fleet of Sukhoi 30 fighter jets of the Indian Air Force will engage in dogfights with France’s Rafale multirole aircraft in simulated scenarios as part of the ‘Garuda’ exercise.

• Other assets include mid-air refueller will also be sent to France by the IAF. It will be one of the largest air exercises between the two strategic partners. The exercise will also provide an opportunity to a sizeable number of IAF pilots to have a close look at the Rafale jets being operated by the French Air Force.

• India had signed a government-to-government deal with France in 2016 to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets at a cost of about Rs.58,000-crore. The first Rafale jet is scheduled to be delivered in September.

Disability Summit, Argentina 2019 is being held Buenos Aires, Argentina.

• The 2nd Global Disability Summit being held in Buenos Aires, Argentina. 'Disability Summit, Argentina 2019', the three-day summit will be held from 6 June to 8 June 2019. India will be represented by the Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Thaawar Chand Gehlot.

Organized by:

• The Global Disability Summit is organized by International Alliance Disability (IDA), an umbrella organization focused on improving awareness and rights for individuals with disabilities around the globe which was established in 1999, and Latin American Network of Non-Governmental Organizations of Persons with Disabilities and their Families (RIADIS).

Objective:

• The summit will be focusing on deliberating issues across the world concerning empowerment and inclusion of Persons with Disabilities. The summit will also include a discussion to work out a mechanism for enabling them to live an independent and dignified life.

• The Summit brings together governments, international organizations, organizations of people with disabilities, civil society organizations,  international cooperation agencies, academia, and the private sector, with the hope of achieving real change for people with disabilities.

1st Global Disability Summit:

• The 1st Global Disability Summit was held in London on 23-24 July 2018. The summit was hosted by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), along with the International Disability Alliance (IDA) and the Government of Kenya.

Aim:

• The 1st summit was in line with the principle of ‘nothing about us, without us’. 40 countries participated in the summit.

• All countries that participated in the summit signed the Charter for Change, the principal legacy document of the Global Disability Summit and committed to working in direction of economic empowerment of the persons with disabilities.

DAYS:

Maharana Pratap Jayanti observed on 6 June.

• Maharana Pratap Jayanti is observed on June 6. It is observed to commemorate the birth anniversary of the brave Rajput warrior Maharana Pratap.  It was his 479th birth anniversary.

Maharana Pratap:

• Maharana Pratap was the ruler of Mewar. He is the eldest son of Maharana Udai Singh and Maharani Jaiwanta Bai. Maharana Pratap is a symbol of Rajput valour, gallantry, and diligence. He fought against Mughal supremacy to free his homeland from their control.

• Mewar is a province in modern-day Rajasthan. The province includes Bhilwara, Chittorgarh, Rajsamand, Udaipur, Pirawa (Jhalawar), Neemuch and Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh, and some parts of Gujarat.

Some amazing facts of Maharana Pratap:

• Maharana Pratap was one of the strongest warriors in India. He is of 7 feet 5 inches in height. He carried 360 kg of weight, which included a spear weighing 80 kg, two swords weighing 208 kg and his armour was around 72 kg heavy. His own weight was more than 110 kg.

He had 11 wives, 17 sons, and 5 daughters.

• He didn't surrender to Akbar while all the other Rajput rulers surrendered and became members of his council.

• Maharana Pratap bravely fought the Haldi Ghati Battle with an army of 22,000 against the Mughal army of 80,000. But he lost the war due to treachery by his brother.

• Chetak, Maharana Pratap’s horse, is known for his loyalty to his master. The horse is said to have a tinge of blue on his coat. Chetak lost his life while jumping across a 21-feet wide river to save his master’s life.

• Ramprasad, Maharana Pratap's elephant killed 2 war elephants of the Mughal army. Ramprasad was imprisoned by Akbar and refused to eat anything or drink and lost his life on the 18th day.

• He died of an injury from the hunting accident while tightening the string of a bow with an arrow.

Appointments and resignations:

Wipro Founder Premji to retire after 53 years, son to be Chairman.

• Wipro Founder Azim Premji will retire as Executive Chairman and Managing Director effective July 30 after having led the IT services company for 53 years. His son and Chief Strategy Officer Rishad Premji will take over as Executive Chairman while CEO Abidali Neemuchwala has been appointed as MD. Premji, however, will continue to serve as non-executive director and Founder Chairman.

About Wipro:

• Wipro Limited is an Indian multinational corporation that provides information technology, consulting and business process services. It is headquartered in Bengaluru, Karnataka, India. In 2013, Wipro separated its non-IT businesses into separate companies.

• Founder: M.H. Hasham Premji

• Founded: 29 December 1945, India

• Owner: Azim Premji

• Headquarters: Bengaluru

• Revenue: 847 crores USD (2019)

• Subsidiaries: Appirio, Topcoder, Designit, Yardley of London

About Azim Premji:

• Founder: M.H. Hasham Premji

• Founded: 29 December 1945, India

• Owner: Azim Premji

• Headquarters: Bengaluru

• Revenue: 847 crores USD (2019)

• Subsidiaries: Appirio, Topcoder, Designit, Yardley of London

AWARDS:

Google Sunder Pichai, Nasdaqs Friedman Receive 2019 Global Leadership Award.

• Google's Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Sundar Pichai and Nasdaq President Adena Friedman selected for Global Leadership Awards 2019 by business advocacy group USIBC.

They both are recognized for their companies contribution as the leading technology-driven platforms

• Washington-based US-India Business Council (USIBC) gives this award for achievements in over 30 categories for talented people who are recognized for their work by their companies.

The award will be given in 'India Ideas Summit' next week.

• Google and Nasdaq at the vanguard, bilateral trade in goods and services grew by nearly 150% over the past five years to touch $142.1 billion in 2018.

About Google

Founded: 4 September 1998

CEO: Sundar Pichai

Parent organization: Alphabet Inc.

Founders: Larry Page, Sergey Brin

About  Nasdaq

CEO: Adena Friedman

Headquarters: New York, United States

Market cap: $10 trillion.

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Important Current Affairs of 5th June

NATIONAL:

Madhya Pradesh Cabinet passes resolution to increase reservation for OBCs to 27%.

• Madhya Pradesh Cabinet passed a resolution to increase the percentage of reservation quota for Other Backward Classes (OBC) from existing 14 percent to 27 percent.

• The move will lead to the reservation in the state breaching the Supreme Court-mandated 50 percent cap to reach 63 percent.

• Madhya Pradesh is the only state in the country to have a 27 percent quota for OBCs.

• Cabinet also increased to 3% the dearness allowance for employees

• About Madhya Pradesh

• Capital: Bhopal

• Chief Minister: Kamal Nath

• Governor: Anandiben Patel

INTERNATIONAL:

US terminated India's preferential trade status under GSP programme.

• Generalized System of Preference (GSP) is the largest and oldest US trade preference programme.

• India was the largest beneficiary of the GSP programme in 2017 with $5.7 billion in imports to the US given duty-free status.

• Reason for US withdrawing India’s GSP benefits:

• The move was taken on determining that India has not committed to provide “equitable and reasonable access to its markets” for the US.

• US’s trade imbalance with India,

• No access to Indian market for US dairy,

• Medical device industry and

• Issues related to data localisation norms.

• On March 4, Trump announced that the US intends to terminate India's designations as a beneficiary developing country under the GSP programme. The 60-day notice period ended on May 3.

AGREEMENTS AND MOU’s:

AAI signs with Boeing to improve airspace utilization.

• The Airports Authority of India (AAI) signed a technical assistance agreement with aerospace major Boeing. The agreement aims to develop an air traffic management roadmap which will improve airspace utilization and help maintain efficient aircraft operations. The AAI will use guidance in the modernization of the Indian National Airspace System (NAS).

The roadmap is expected to be developed within 18 months and it will be undertaken with a grant from the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA).

In this project, Boeing will also work closely with Indian aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and other airspace stakeholders like the US-India Aviation Cooperation Program (ACP).

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

Ajeya Kallam appointed principal advisor to Andhra CM.

• Former Chief Secretary Ajeya Kallam was on Tuesday appointed as the principal advisor to Andhra Pradesh CM YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. Kallam will be in the position for 3 years, with a monthly salary of ₹2.5 lakh, according to an order. Notably, Kallam retired as Chief Secretary in 2017, when N Chandrababu Naidu was Andhra CM.

DAYS:

World Environment Day - 5 June.

• World Environment Day (WED) is celebrated on the 5th of June every year, and is the United Nation's principal vehicle for encouraging awareness and action for the protection of our environment.

• First held in: 1974

• The theme for 2019 is "Beat Air Pollution".

• 2019 host nation is China.

• 2018:

• The theme for 2018 is "Beat Plastic Pollution". The host nation was India.

• Air Pollution facts:

• Approximately 7 million people worldwide die prematurely each year from air pollution, with about 4 million of these deaths occurring in Asia-Pacific.

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Important Current Affairs of 4th June

NATIONAL:

Indian Army commissioned a Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring System under Go Green initative.

• Indian Army commissioned a Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring System (CAAQMS) at Fort William Military Station, Kolkata, West Bengal. It is a part of the countrywide Go Green' initiative. 

• The Air Quality Monitoring System was commissioned by Lt Gen M M Naravane, General Officer Commander-in-Chief, Eastern Command. It will be overall sixth CAAQMS in Kolkata.

CAAQMS:

• Along with measuring air pollution, the CAAQMS will display the wind speed, direction, ambient temperature, relative humidity, solar radiation, barometric pressure, and rain gauge.

• The CAAQMS at the Eastern Command headquarters, Fort William in Kolkata, will measure air pollution, including SO2, NO, NO2, NH3, CO, O3, VOC and particulate matters (PM 10 and PM 2.5) continuously throughout the year.

• West Bengal Pollution Control Board (WBPCB) or any other local or international weather monitoring bodies can also use CAAQMS.

• The data can be remotely monitored on the internet and collated into various desired formats. Its readings will be considered a benchmark of quality.

• The data will be published via the Internet for public awareness.

Army's previous efforts:

• Apart from this, initiatives have already been taken to reduce the consumption of electricity as well as conserve water and segregate waste at Fort William.

• It has reduced electricity bills and distributed nearly 100 sets of dustbins in the garrison for segregation of waste.

Eastern Command of Indian Army:

•  It is one of the seven operational commands of the army.

• It is headquartered in Fort William in the city of Kolkata, West Bengal.

• Current commander: Lt Gen M M Naravane, PVSM, AVSM, SM, VSM.

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

RBI initiated Financial Literacy Week 2019 is observed from 3 to 7 June.

• Financial Literacy Week 2019 is being observed from 3 June to 7 June. It is an annual initiative by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to promote awareness of key topics through a focused campaign.

Theme:

• The theme of Financial Literacy Week 2019 is 'Farmers'. The FL Week would focus on farmers as the target group with the primary theme being "responsible borrowing and agricultural finance". It also focuses on how they can benefit from being a part of the formal banking system.  • The aim of the initiative is to create awareness about financial products and services, good financial practices, going digital and consumer protection.

RBI's Financial Education Initiative includes:

• The FAME (Financial Awareness Messages) booklet- which provides basic financial literacy messages for information of the general public.

• It has developed tailored financial literacy content for five target groups' namely Farmers, Small entrepreneurs, School children, Self Help Groups and Senior Citizens. The content can be used by the trainers in financial literacy programmes.

•  RBI has designed Audiovisuals on Basic Financial Literacy, Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and Going Digital for the benefit of the general public on topics relating to Financial Literacy.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajith Doval gets Cabinet rank with extension of Five more year.

• National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajith Doval gets Cabinet rank with the extension of Five more year reappointed to the post for five more years and given Cabinet rank in the second term of the NDA government.

• Government of India on Monday reappointed Doval as NSA and upgraded his position from Minister of State (MoS) rank

Doval, who was appointed as India's fifth NSA, played a crucial  in ensuring the secure return of 46 Indian nursing bank who was appointed as India's fifth NSA.

• Doval was widely credited along with the then Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar and Indian Ambassador to China Vijay Keshav Gokhale, for resolving Doklam Standoff through diplomatic issues.

About National Security Adviser (NSA)

• He is the senior official on the National Security Council (NSC) of India, and the chief adviser to the Prime Minister of India on national and international security policy.

• The National Security Advisor (India) is the most powerful bureaucrat in the Government of India.

Ajit Doval is the current NSA.

BJP's Rajesh Patnekar elected Speaker of Goa Assembly.

• BJP MLA Rajesh Patnekar was elected as the Speaker of Goa Assembly, defeating ex-state CM Pratapsingh Rane of Congress by 22-16 votes. Speaking to the MLAs, Patnekar said, "Don't leave the House while the Assembly is in session. Try to watch, try to study." His rival Pratapsingh Rane said that Patnekar "will be judged by the decisions of the House."

About Rajesh Patnekar:

• BJP MLA Rajesh Patnekar was elected as the Speaker of Goa Assembly, defeating ex-state CM Pratapsingh Rane of Congress by 22-16 votes. Speaking to the MLAs, Patnekar said, "Don't leave the House while the Assembly is in session. Try to watch, try to study." His rival Pratapsingh Rane said that Patnekar "will be judged by the decisions of the House.

H Vishwanath resigns as Karnataka JD(S) President.

• Following the Lok Sabha debacle of the Janata Dal (Secular) in Karnataka, state party President H Vishwanath on Tuesday resigned from the post. He resigned saying, "I take moral responsibility for the (party's) defeat." The Karnataka JD(S) chief was reportedly unhappy over being sidelined and not being taken into confidence by the party on key issues.

DAYS:

International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression is observed on 4 June.

• The International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression is a United Nations observance each 4 June. In 1997 The General Assembly adopted the 51/77 Resolution on the Rights of the Child. It was established on 19 August 1982.

History:

• Originally focused on victims of the 1982 Lebanon War. A large number of innocent Lebanese and Palestinian children being the victims of the aggression acts by Israel’s. So, at its special emergency session on 19 August 1982, the members of the General Assembly of Palestine was shocked. Therefore, the assembly decided to celebrate 4th June as the International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression under the resolution ES-7/8.

• UN's purpose expanded to acknowledge the pain suffered by children throughout the world who are the victims of physical, mental and emotional abuse. This day affirms the UN's commitment to protect the rights of children. It was a landmark development in efforts to improve the protection of children in conflict situations.

• In recent years, the number of violations perpetrated against children have, in many conflict zones, increased. More needs to be done to protect the 250 million children living in countries and areas affected by conflict. More must be done to protect children from targeting by violent extremists, to promote international humanitarian and human rights law, and to ensure accountability for violations of the rights of children.

2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development:

• The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development provides us with the universal masterplan to secure a better future for children. The new agenda included for the first time a specific target to end all forms of violence against children, and ending the abuse, neglect, and exploitation of children are mainstreamed across several other violence-related targets.

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Important Current Affairs of 3rd June

NATIONAL:

ONGC became Indias most profitable public sector company.

• Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), India's top oil and gas producer, has toppledIndian Oil Corp (IOC) to regain the crown of being the country's most profitable public sector company.

• Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) reported a 34% jump in its 2018- 19 fiscal net profit to Rs.26,716 crore.

• Whereas, IOC registered a net profit of Rs.17.274 crore for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2019.

• ONGC, in the previous two financial years, had lost the most profitable PSU tag to IOC. With its refining margins under pressure due to falling oil prices, IOC had also lost the title of being India's largest company by turnover tag to billionaire Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries in FY19.

• Reliance has been India's most profitable company for the fourth year in a row.

Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC):

Founded on: 14 August 1956

Headquarters: New Delhi, India

Chairman & MD: Shashi Shankar

Owner: Government Of India

ONGC is an Indian multinational oil and gas company.

• It is a Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) under the administrative control of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.

• It produces around 70% of India's crude oil and around 62% of natural gas.

India has 20 health workers per 10,000 people: NSSO study.

• National Sample Survey Organization (NSSO) data showed that India has 20.6 health workers per 10,000 people.

• This is less than the World Health Organization's (WHO) minimum overreach of 22.8 per 10,000 people.

• Distribution of health workers:

• This is uneven between the urban and rural areas.

• Rural areas with 71 % of India's population have only 36% of health workers.

• Delhi highest concentration of health workers followed by Kerala, Punjab, and Haryana.

• Public and private sector: The study has further notified that there is an uneven distribution of health workforce seen in public and health sector too.

About NSSO:

Founded on: 1950

Headquarters: Delhi

INTERNATIONAL:

Sri Lankan presidential polls to be held between 15 Nov and 7 Dec.

• The presidential elections in Sri Lanka would be held between November 15 and December 7, Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya has said, clarifying that according to constitutional provisions, the polls must be held one month before the end of the current President’s term.

President Sirisena's five-year term is scheduled to end on January 8, 2020. Sirisena was elected for a 5-year term on January 8, 2015, when he challenged the incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

SpiceJets Chairman and MD Ajay Singh was elected to the board of IATA.

• SpiceJet's Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh was elected to the board of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), less than three months after the airline joined the global grouping.

• Founder and former chairman of the now grounded Jet Airways Naresh Goyal, who was associated with the IATA for a long time, was a member on the previous board.

Board of IATA:

• The new board of the global airlines' grouping would be chaired by Lufthansa Group Chief Executive Officer Carsten Spohr, who took charge after the conclusion of the IATA annual general meeting at Seoul, South Korea.

• Spohr will be the Chairman of the IATA Board of Governors (BoG) for a one-year term. Other board members include Air Canada President and CEO Calin Rovinescu, Qantas CEO Alan Joyce and Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker.

• In March, SpiceJet became the first Indian low-cost carrier to take membership of the IATA, a grouping of around 290 airlines.

International Air Transport Association (IATA):

Formed on: 19 April 1945

Headquarters: Quebec, Canada

DG and CEO: Alexandre de Juniac

Membership: 290 airlines in 120 countries

• IATA is a trade association of the world’s airlines. IATA provides consulting and training services in many areas.

VP Sivakolundhu elected as Puducherry Assembly Speaker.

• Puducherry Deputy Speaker and Lawspet legislator VP Sivakolundhu was on Monday elected as the new Speaker of the Union Territory Assembly. The Speaker's chair fell vacant after Congress' V Vaithilingam stepped down on March 21 to contest the Lok Sabha elections from the lone Puducherry parliamentary seat. The Congress leader, Sivakolundhu, was the sole contender for the Speaker's post.

DAYS:

June 3 is celebrated as the World Bicycle Day across the globe.

• In April 2018, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declared 3 June as International World Bicycle Day. The resolution for World Bicycle Day recognizes the uniqueness, longevity, and versatility of the bicycle, which has been in use for two centuries, and that it is a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transportation.

• 2019 will be the second year when it will be celebrated after the UN General Assembly declared it in 2018 to acknowledge the uniqueness, longevity and the importance of the bicycle which is a simple, affordable, reliable and an environmentally friendly mode of transportation.

Aim:

• The day aims to promote the use of bicycles as a means of fostering sustainable development, strengthening education, including physical education, for children and young people, promoting health and tolerance, preventing disease, mutual understanding and respect, facilitating social inclusion and a culture of peace.

World Bicycle Day in India:

• In India, Vice President of India Venkaiah Naidu had flagged off a cycling rally in Connaught Place in Delhi on the occasion of World Bicycle Day. It was also celebrated by cyclists in many other cities like Bengaluru and Mumbai.

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Important Current Affairs of 1st June

NATIONAL:

Tenth National Science Film Festival of India to be held in Agartala, Tripura in 2020.

• 10th National Science Film Festival of India(NSFFl) will be in Agartala, Tripura in January-February 2020.

• This is for the second time the event will be held in a North-Eastern city.

• It will be jointly hosted by Vigyan Prasar of the Central Government, State Government, and Tripura Central University.

Chief Minister of the State Biplab Kumar Deb had requested the Union Science and Technology Ministerto hold the NSFF in Tripura.

• Minimum 10 countries will participate in the upcoming event and it will include the films produced by UNICEF, UNESCO and filmmakers from different countries.

• In NSFFI, the maximum length of the films will be 40 minutes and Vigyan Prasar will raise awareness on science and environment to the society through cinemas.

NSFFI was first held in Chennai in 2011.

• Since then, all the regions of the nation have been covered including Bhubaneshwar, Kolkata, Bangalore, Lucknow, Mumbai, Guwahati and Mohali.

• Besides the NSFFI, The Tripura Government has plans to host 'Destination Tripura', a special competitive film production initiative.

• It will focus on upholding tourism and rich biodiversity of Tripura like the flora and fauna, wildlife sanctuaries, water bodies, rubber and bamboo plantations

About National Science Film Festival of India(NSFFl)

• The festival is an initiative of Vigyan Prasar and the Government of India to promote science films in India.

• Science filmmaking is not a developed field in India compared to many other developed countries.

Mohana Singh becomes 1st woman fighter pilot to fly Hawk jet.

• Flight Lieutenant Mohana Singh has become the first woman fighter pilot to be qualified to undertake missions by day on Hawk advanced jet aircraft, an official statement said. Her training involved flying both air-to-air combat and air-to-ground missions. She has a total of over 500 hours of incident-free flying of which 380 hours are on the Hawk Mk 132 jet.

About Mohana Singh:

• Mohana Singh Jitarwal is one of the first female pilots of India. She was declared as the first combat pilot along with two of her cohort, Bhawana Kanth, and Avani Chaturvedi. All three women pilots were inducted into the Indian Air Force fighter squadron in June 2016.

INTERNATIONAL:

For the first time in 92 years, 6 Indian-origin kids among 8 won the National Spelling Bee Contest.

• For the first time in 92 years, 6 Indian-origin kids were among the 8 who won the 92nd Scripps National Spelling Bee Contest.

• They were awarded the cash of $50,000 and prizes.

• The competition, broadcasted in ESPN, was held at Gaylord National Resort in National Harbor, Maryland, US.

• Erin Howard aged 14 of Alabama, Rishik Gandhasri aged 13 of California, Saketh Sundar aged 13 of Maryland, Shruthika Padhy aged 13 of New Jersey, Sohum Sukhatankar aged 13 of Texas, Abhijay Kodali aged 12 of Texas, Christopher Serrao aged 13 of New Jersey and Rohan Raja aged 13 of Texas were the winners of the competition.

• There were 565 contestants aged between 7 and 14 who have not passed 8th grade from US, Canada, Ghana, Jamaica, Japan, Bahamas, Germany, South Korea and other countries.

• The winners correctly spelt the final 47 words accurately over 5 consecutive rounds with words like Omphalopsychite, Geeldikkop, auftaktigkeit and many more.

The winner of the year 2018 was Karthik Nemmani, a 14-year-old eighth-grader from Texas.

• Balu Natarajan became the first Indian-origin child to win in the year 1985.

National Spelling Bee Contest is a high profile, a high-pressure endurance test of exotic words.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

Gautam Sawang takes charge as new DGP of Andhra Pradesh.

• Damodar Gautam Sawang, a 1986-batch IPS officer, on Saturday took charge as new Director General of Andhra Pradesh Police. His predecessor RP Thakur was transferred to the Printing and Stationery Department as Commissioner by state's CM YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on his first day in office. Sawang has also worked as SP and DIG of Police of Maoist-hit Warangal district.

About Gautam Sawang:

• Damodar Gautam Sawang is the present Director General of Police, Andhra Pradesh who was appointed in 31 May 2019. Sawang is a Regular Recruit of the Indian Police Service belonging to the 1986 batch and allocated to the Andhra Pradesh Police cadre.

• Born: 10 July 1963 (age 55 years)

• Service years: 1986-present

• Status: Commissioner of Police, Vijayawada

• Department: Andhra Pradesh Police

• Award: President's Police Medal for Distinguished Service

• Rank: Director general of police

DAYS:

World Milk Day is observed on 1 June.

• World Milk Day is a day established by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations to recognize the importance of milk as a global food. It has been observed on June 1 each year since 2001.

The day is intended to provide an opportunity to bring attention to activities that are connected with the dairy sector.

• Objective of the day:

- To provide information about the need and importance of milk in a human being's life.

- Various activities are organised on this day to raise awareness about milk and milk products.

- To celebrate the contribution of milk and dairy products in several industries, the economy and people's lives.

- To educate people about the nutrients that are present in the milk like calcium, protein, vitamin B2, potassium, iodine, etc.

- Several promotional activities about milk and its importance are launched by the International Dairy Federation on its website online.

Milk:

Milk contains valuable nutrients and offers a range of health benefits. It is a white liquid produced by the mammary glands of mammals.

Milk is not only consumed by growing children but also by the people of all age groups. It is an important part of our daily diet. It has great nourishing value and a rich source of calcium, protein, fat and vitamin C. Mainly we get milk from cows, buffaloes and from other animals like sheep, goat and camel.

Milk day in India:

• The World Milk Day event does not follow a specific theme in the world. Different countries, governments, and non-governmental organisations decide their own theme.

• The theme for World Milk Day 2019 in India is "Drink Milk: Today & Everyday".

Various campaigns are organised in India at the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI), Izatnagar, Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh and focuses on safe, hygiene milk production and consumption.

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Important Current Affairs of 29th May

NATIONAL:

Madhya Pradesh to tentatively have new UNESCO heritage site

• Orchha town in Madhya Pradesh has a historical site with the Bundela dynasty architectural style.

• The Archaeological Survey of India included that heritage town of Orchha in a tentative list of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) world heritage sites. It was included in the proposal sent by the ASI to the UN body in April 2019.

• UNESCO’s rules state that to be a part of the World Heritage sites, the heritage or historical site must first be on the tentative list.

• After making it to that list, yet another proposal is sent to the UNESCO.

Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma launched a new project to boost medicinal plant cultivation

• Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma launched a new project to boost medicinal and aromatic plants cultivation named "Aroma Mission".

• "Aroma Mission" a project of Rs.18 crore launched to give importance for agriculture and allied sectors so that farmers earn the benefits from it.

• CM inaugurated a processing unit of essential oils and insisted institutions like CSIR-CIMAP to undertake more researches in this field.

• Broomsticks and bay leaves were categorized as 'Agro Forestry' items.

• Cultivation of lemon grass and citronella plant will be undertaken on 50-acre plots in every district of the state.

• Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP) is a plant research laboratory of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)

Telangana to set up countrys first 'Blockchain District' in Hyderabad

• Telangana released a draft blockchain policy to set up country's first 'Blockchain District' in Hyderabad. Telangana released a draft blockchain policy to set up country's first 'Blockchain District' in Hyderabad.

• It is aimed to create an ecosystem for major blockchain companies, start-ups for promoting research, innovation and industry collaboration. Telangana Government signed an agreement with Tech Mahindra to set up the Blockchain district in 2018.

• The draft was released by Information Technology, Electronics and Communications (IT E&C) Department. The main focus will be given to the sectors such as banking, financial services and insurance, pharmaceuticals and healthcare, government institutions and departments, logistics and supply chains.

• The incentives like access to investments, subsidies, tax credits will be rolled out to attract enterprises, Small and Medium Enterprises and startups. Other incentives include 25% subsidy on lease rentals up to 5 lakh per annum for the first three years of operations.

• 100% reimbursement of State Goods and Services Tax (SGST ) for the first three years for startups with revenue less than 5 crore and along with one-time grant of Rs.l0 lakh, 75% subsidy in travel fare when the founders attend global conferences and 25% reimbursement on Internet charges would be provided.

INTERNATIONAL:

India, Sri Lanka and Japan signed a deal to develop container terminal at Colombo

• Sri Lanka, Japan, and India signed an agreement to jointly develop the East Container Terminal at the Colombo Port on 28th May. The joint initiative is estimated to cost between $500 million and $700 million.

• The signing of the Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC)is significant, given that the countries had been negotiating the deal since last year with little success.

As per the agreement, the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) retains 100% ownership of the East Container Terminal (ECT), while the Terminal Operations Company is jointly owned. Sri Lanka will hold a51% stake in the project and the joint venture partners will retain 49%.

• Aim: The ECT development project aimed at neutralizing the growing influence of China, which has poured money into the South Asian island nation under its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) infrastructure plan. The ECT is located some three km away from the China-backed international financial city, known popularly as port city.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATION:

Alapan Bandyopadhyay appointed as new Home Secretary for West Bengal

• Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee appointed Alapan Bandyopadhyay, an IAS officer of the 1987 batch, as the new Home Secretary for West Bengal. He succeeds Atri Bhattacharya .

• Alapan Bandyopadhyay was in charge of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises(MSME) Department with additional charge of Industry, Commerce and Enterprises Department.

• Ajit Ranjan Bardhan as the new principal secretary of the North Bengal Development Department (NBDD)Bardhan was earlier in charge of Youth Services and Sports department.

• Barun Kumar Ray, who was in charge of the NBDD with an additional charge of Jalpaiguri Commissioner was transferred as the Commissioner of Malda.

Choten D Lama, Secretary of the Panchayat & Rural Development Department (P&RD) was shifted to the Backward Classes Welfare Department with an additional charge of the Tribal department.

• Gyanwant Singh was appointed as the new ADGP (Law and Order).

Jayanta Kumar Basu was appointed as the director of the directorate of economic offences.

BUSINESS AND ECONOMY:

RBI extended time window for using the RTGS for customer transactions

• The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced that the time-window for using theReal Time Gross Settlement System (RTGS) for customer transactions will be extended from 4:30 pm to 6 pm on all working days. It will be effective from June 1, 2019.

• The current RTGS service window for customer transactions is available to banks from 8 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. on a working day.

Transactions will now take place under three windows:

1.8 am to 11 am

2.11 am to 1 pm

3.1 pm to 6pm

• Charges for the transactions:

• There shall be no charge for transactions between 8 am and 11 am.

• A charge of Rs.2 will be levied on every transaction conducted between 11 am and 1 pm.

Rs.5 shall be charged for every transaction between 1pm and 6pm.

Standard Chartered launched Trade A1 Engine in partnership with IBM

• Standard Charteredlaunched Trade A1 Engine in partnership with IBM Standard Chartered in partnership with IBM has launched the Trade A1 Engine which will automate the high risk process of trade documentation.

• It will enhance client experience through increased operational efficiency and strengthened operational control.This newly launched Trade A1 Engine will replace the Traditional documentary trade consisting of millions of data elements in paper-based that to be reviewed through a largely manual process.

About Trade A1 Engine

• Conversion of non-digital shipping documents into machine-readable format enabled by Optical Character Recognition (OCR).

•The Identification and classification of document types from an initial pre-defined database.

• The Continuous Machine learning (ML) based on user re-classification / re-defining of data elements to further Improve accuracy.

• Natural Language Processing (NLP) capabilities to read and capture context from data in the documents.

Srei Equipment Finance ties up with Oriental Bank of Commerce to offer loans for purchase of equipment under a co-lending arrangement

• Srei Equipment Financetied up with Oriental Bank of Commerce to offer loans for the purchase of equipment under a co-lending arrangement.Srei Equipment Finance is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Srei Infrastructure Finance.

• The funds for the project will be sourced through a platform named iQuippo, a unique digital market place of Kanoria Foundation.It will help in loan origination, loan dues collection, auction of equipment, valuation of equipment and other facilities.

• The co-lending arrangement will include financing of construction, mining and allied equipment, medical equipment, commercial vehicles and farm equipment.

Motila Oswal AMC become the first Indian fund house to introduce WhatsApp transaction platform

• Motilal Oswal Asset Management Company (AMC) become the first Indian fund house to launch WhatsApp transaction platform for mutual fund transactions for new as well as existing investors.This enables investors to use WhatsApp to invest in any scheme from Motilal Oswal AMC.Investors can either invest lump sum or through SIPS.

• The platform works:

• An investor should add Motilal Oswal AMC number (+91 9372205812) to his/her contact list. Then on WhatsApp, type 'Hi' on the above number.

• After sharing the PAN details, the investor should share his/her mode of investment, fund, amount. Finally, authorize payment for the transaction through the payment link sent

DAYS:

Veer Savarkar was observed on 28 May

• Swatantryaveer Vinayak Damodar Savarkar's birth anniversary was celebrated on 28 May 2019. On this occasion, Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tributes to VD Savarkar. He said that the nation will always remember sacrifices made by Veer Savarkar during the freedom struggle.

SPORTS:

Ivo Karlovic-Oldest Man to win a match at the French Open 2019 for 46 years

• Croatia’s Ivo Karlovic became the oldest man to win a match at the French Open 2019 for 46 years on 28 May. He beat Spain’s fellow veteran Feliciano Lopez in a first-round duel.

• Forty-year-old Ivo Karlovic became the oldest player to win a match at Roland Garros and defeated 37-year-old Feliciano Lopez to secure 7-6(4), 7-5, 6-7(7), 7-5 in three hours and six minutes to reach the second round at the clay-court Grand Slam for the sixth time.

• This was the oldest men’s match in combined age at Roland Garros during the Open Era, and the seventh-oldest match at a Grand Slam. Karlovic hit 35 aces and saved five of the six break points he faced to win his first match since Indian Wells.

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Important Current Affairs of 23th May

NATIONAL:

Indra Nooyi was presented with an honorary degree by the prestigious Yale University.

• Former PepsiCo chairman and CEO Indra Nooyi was presented with an honorary degree by the prestigious Yale University, her alma mater. The degree is to recognize her achievements in business and for being a global role model who encouraged women and girls to see themselves as top corporate executives. She is celebrated for her leadership and her commitment to helping women achieve success.

• Nooyi, She received a degree in Master of Public and Private Management from the university's Yale School of Management in 1980, was presented with the Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.

• Nooyi was among 11 individuals to be presented with the honorary degrees for achieving distinction in their fields.

Others who received the honorary degrees included author and feminist activist Gloria Steinem, wildlife researcher Cynthia Moss, entrepreneur and philanthropist Strive Masiyiwa and Harvard University president Lawrence Bacow.

Indra Nooyi:

• In 2006, Nooyi became the first woman to helm the global food and beverage giant PepsiCo. She stepped down in October 2 last year as PepsiCo's CEO, after 24 years with the company, the last 12 as CEO of the global beverage giant.

• Nooyi was recently elected to the board of Amazon, on whose audit compensation committee she sits. She is a member of the World Economic Forum board of trustees and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

• She is also an independent director of the International Cricket Council and chair of the compensation committee at Schlumberger, an oilfield services company, on whose board she serves.

• One of 25 women to have led a Fortune 500 company, Nooyi has appeared frequently on the Forbes and Fortune rankings of the world's most powerful women.

Cong's Ramya Haridas becomes Kerala's second-ever Dalit woman MP.

• Ramya Haridas, Congress' Lok Sabha candidate from Alathur constituency in Kerala is set to become the second-ever Dalit woman MP from the state. She defeated senior CPI(M) leader and sitting MP PK Biju with a margin of nearly 1.59 lakh votes. The 32-year-old, who has a habit of breaking into songs during rallies, recited a poem to thank the voters.

• About Ramya Haridas:

• Ramya Haridas is an Indian politician of Indian National Congress in the state of Kerala and the daughter of All India Mahila Congress leader Radha. She currently serves as the Block panchayat President of Kunnamangalam. She will be contesting from Alathur in 2019 election as All Indian National Congress candidate.

• Born: 1987 (age 32 years), Kozhikode

• Party: Indian National Congress.

Gopal becomes first HIV-infected climber to scale Everest.

• Gopal Shrestha, a 56-year-old from Nepal's Pokhara, on Wednesday became the first HIV-infected climber to scale the world's highest peak, the Mount Everest. Shrestha, who used to play football for Nepal, climbed the peak in his second attempt after being forced to abandon his first attempt due to the deadly earthquake in Nepal in 2015.

AGREEMENTS AND MOU’s:

Assam Rifles signed the charter of affiliation with the Indian Coast Guard.

• In a first, the Assam Rifles (AR) signed the charter of affiliation with the Indian Coast Guard to enhance inter-forces cooperation and interoperability. It is a permanent affiliation of Assam Rifles with the Coast Guards.

•  The charter of affiliation was signed by the Director General (DG) of the Indian Coast Guard, Rajendra Singh and DG, Assam Rifles Lt Gen Sukhdeep Sangwan on 22 May 2019.

Main Objective:

The objective of the affiliation is to promote bilateral cooperation between the two Services and contribute to joint capacity for training, sports, adventure, and sustainable development.

The affiliation includes:

The training will involve the exchange of information and personnel of the two Forces and building camaraderie. The two will work together in humanitarian missions and other areas.

A combat battalion of Assam Rifles will soon be training onboard ICGS Shaurya (16), an offshore patrol vessel in Chennai.

In due course of time, arrangements will be made for the exchange of personnel including those with an understanding of Land Border Management (LBM) with Assam Rifles battalions.

Over-Seas Deployment (OSD) of AR personnel on board an ICG ship, bilateral meetings between the two forces, and participation of experts from both sides in such meetings.

ADB to provide ₹5,200 cr to electrify railway tracks in India.

• The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Wednesday said it will provide $750 million (over ₹5,200 crore) long-term financing to electrify railway tracks in India. This is the largest single non-sovereign loan ever committed by the funding agency. Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC) will use the loan to install electric traction equipment along about 3,378 kilometres of existing railway lines.

About ADB:

• The Asian Development Bank is a regional development bank established on 19 December 1966, which is headquartered in the Ortigas Center located in the city of Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines. The company also maintains 31 field offices around the world to promote social and economic development in Asia.

Wikipedia

• Headquarters: Mandaluyong, Philippines

• President: Takehiko Nakao

• Membership: 68 countries

• Founded: 19 December 1966

• Purpose: Economic development

• Subsidiaries: Asian Development Bank Institute

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

HDFC Group Overtakes Tata Group As Indias Most Valuable.

• HDFC group overtaken the 151-year-old Tata group to emerge as India’s most valuable by way of market capitalization (m-cap).

The combined market value of the five listed companies of the HDFC group – HDFC, HDFC Bank, HDFC Life, HDFC Asset Management and Gruh Finance stood at Rs 11.66 lakh crore while the combined m-cap of 29 Tata group companies stood at Rs 11.64 lakh crore, about Rs 2,000 crore less than that of the HDFC group.

About HDFC group

CEO: Aditya Puri

Headquarters: Mumbai

Founded: August 1994, India

Subsidiaries: HDFC securities, HDB Financial Services

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

N Chandrababu Naidu resigns as CM of Andhra Pradesh.

• N Chandrababu Naidu has resigned as Andhra Pradesh CM after trends showed his Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leading in only 23 Assembly seats and winning two. YS Jagan Mohan Reddy-led YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) is leading in 138 Assembly seats and has won 12. The Legislative Party meeting of YSRCP is set to take place on May 25.

About N Chandrababu Naidu:

• Nara Chandrababu Naidu is an Indian politician who was the former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh serving since 2014. He was the first chief minister of the state since it was divided. Wikipedia

• Born: 20 April 1950 (age 69 years), Naravaripalli

• Spouse: Nara Bhuvaneshwari (m. 1980)

• Education: Sri Venkateswara University

• Siblings: Ramamurthy Naidu

• Parents: N. Kharjura Naidu, Amanamma Naidu

• Children: Nara Lokesh

Netflix hires its first India content IP lawyer.

• Netflix has reportedly appointed Priyanka Chaudhari as director and senior counsel for content and Intellectual Property (IP) in India. Chaudhari, who worked at Balaji Telefilms as VP-Group Legal for around two years, will be Netflix's first content IP lawyer in India, the report said. Reportedly, in her new role, Chaudhari will report to Netflix's Los Angeles office.

About Netflix:

• Netflix, Inc. is an American media-services provider headquartered in Los Gatos, California, founded in 1997 by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph in Scotts Valley, California

• Founded: 29 August 1997, Scotts Valley, California, United States

• Films produced: Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, The Kissing Booth, MORE

• Owned by: Morgan Stanley, Reed Hastings

• Founders: Reed Hastings, Marc Randolph

• Did you know: Netflix is the world's seventh-largest internet company by revenue.

DAYS:

World Tortoise Day is observed on 23rd May.

• World turtle day is observed on 23rd May. It is sponsored yearly since 2000 by American Tortoise Rescue. The aim is to bring attention to, and increase knowledge of and respect for, turtles and tortoises, and encourage human action to help them survive and thrive. This year the day spotlights on freshwater turtles.

• The herpetologists, one who studies about amphibians and reptiles, have launched a unique initiative to gather more information about India’s freshwater turtles and tortoises.

In India:

• The India Biodiversity Portal has initiated a ‘Turtle Spotting Week’ as part of a unique exercise to document the creatures across India. The week began on 17th May and ends on 23rd May 2019.

• There are at least 28 species of freshwater turtles which can be spotted across the country and we felt that not enough attention was being given to them. Research and conservation activities in particular are limited and we wanted to encourage more people to document their findings.

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Important Current Affairs 21th May 2019

NATIONAL:

PCT Humanity entered the Guinness Book of World Records for its hunger relief efforts.

• PCT Humanity, a charity run by an Indian, in the UAE has entered the Guinness Book of World Records for its hunger relief efforts during the holy month of Ramzan in Abu Dhabi. The charity set the new Guinness World Records for “Longest Line of Hunger Relief Package” in Abu Dhabi.

Adjudicated by Douglas Palau, the attempt saw iftar meals containing seven items spread in a line without keeping any gap between the packages for a kilometre.

Joginder Singh Salaria's, founder of PCT Humanity, efforts were in continuation to the vegetarian iftar held daily at the premises of his company Pehal International, Dubai Industrial Park. The main aim of the charity is to feed people pure vegetarian food to stay healthy and fit and also save animals.

Reliance beats Indian Oil, becomes India's biggest firm by revenue.

• Asia's richest person Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries has toppled state-run Indian Oil to become India's largest company by revenue. Reliance reported revenue of ₹6.23 lakh crore for 2018-19 compared to Indian Oil's ₹6.17 lakh crore. With this milestone, Reliance has achieved the number one position in India in terms of revenue, profit and market capitalisation.

• Reliance Industries Limited is an Indian conglomerate holding company headquartered in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. Reliance owns businesses across India engaged in energy, petrochemicals, textiles, natural resources, retail, and telecommunications. Wikipedia

• Stock price: RELIANCE (NSE) ₹ 1,339.90 +14.00 (+1.06%)

• 21 May, 3:43 pm IST - Disclaimer

• CEO: Mukesh Ambani (31 Jul 2002–)

• Owner: Mukesh Ambani (47.35%)

• Founder: Dhirubhai Ambani

• Founded: 8 May 1973, Maharashtra

• Revenue: 6.23 lakh crores INR (US$87 billion, 2019)

• Subsidiaries: Jio, JioSaavn, Radisys, Indiavidual Learning, MORE

BANKS AND ECONOMICS:

Tripura Gramin Bank received Indias top three Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) in terms of profit, business and growth.

• Tripura Gramin Bank received India’s top three Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) in terms of profit, business and growth.

• Currently India has 46 Regional Rural Bank out of which Tripura Gramin Bank ranked 3rd in the country. 

• Tripura Gramin Bank posted a profit for 7 successive years to Rs 125.45 crore in fiscal 2018-19.

• The central government has a 50% stake, the Union Bank of India has 35% stake and rest 15% is held by the Tripura government.

About Tripura Gramin Bank

Founded    21 Dec 1976

Headquarter: Agartala

Chairman: Mahendra Mohan Goswami.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

Joko Widodo has been elected President of Indonesia for the second term.

• Indonesia’s Joko Widodo has been re-elected as President of the country. He beat his rival Prabowo Subianto, a retired general.

Widodo and his vice-presidential running mate Ma’ruf Amin won the election by a 55.5% to 44.5%margin over Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno.

Widodo's PDI-P finished first in the People's Representative Council (DPR) election with 19.33%, followed by Prabowo's Gerindra with 12.57%. The next top parties by the number of votes are Golkar, the National Awakening Party (PKB), the Nasdem Party, and the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS).

Joko Widodo:

Joko Widodo is an Indonesian politician who is the seventh and current President of Indonesia.

Elected in July 2014 as the first Indonesian president to not come from an elite political or military background, he was previously the Mayor of Surakarta from 2005 to 2012, and the Governor of Jakarta from 2012 to 2014.

He belongs to the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle.

Indonesia General election:

• General elections were held in Indonesia on 17 April 2019.

• For the first time in the country's history, the president, the vice president, members of the People's Consultative Assembly (MPR), and members of local legislative bodies were elected on the same day with over 190 million eligible voters.

• Sixteen parties participated in the elections nationally, including four new parties.

The election was a re-match of the 2014 presidential election, in which Widodo defeated Prabowo. The election was described as "one of the most complicated single-day ballots in global history".

Moin ul Haque appointed as Pakistans High Commissioner to India.

• Pakistan announced career diplomat Moin ul Haque as its new High Commissioner to India. The appointment was formally approved by Prime Minister Imran Khan. He is the current ambassador of Pakistan in France.

• Haque replaces Sohail Mehmood. The post of High Commissioner to India fell vacant after Sohail Mehmood was appointed Pakistan's new foreign secretary.

• Pakistan has announced new ambassadors to 18 countries including China, Japan, and Brussels. The decision came after a detailed meeting with Prime Minister Khan, who formally approved the new appointments.

Other appointments:

• In Beijing, Naghmana Hashmi will replace Masood Khalid, the incumbent envoy to China, after completion of his tenure. Additional Secretary Imtiaz Ahmad has been appointed Ambassador to Japan, while Zaheer Janjua, currently serving as additional secretary in Europe, will look after the Pakistani mission in Brussels.

• Sarfaraz Ahmad was appointed as ambassador to Sudan, Imran Haider as ambassador in Tajikistan, Major General Abdul Aziz Tariq in Brunei and Major General Muhammad Khalid Rao in Bosnia Herzegovina.

• Ambassador in Kuwait Ghulam Dastagir will replace Muazzam Ali Khan in Abu Dhabi, while Qazi Khalilullah, serving asambassador in Russia, was being given an extension of six months.   

The newly-appointed ambassadors and consul generals will play a pivotal in promoting the soft image of Pakistan and will adopt the best behaviour with Pakistani community living abroad.

Note:

Ambassador: An ambassador is an accredited diplomat sent by a state as its permanent representative in a foreign country.

DAYS:

May 21 is observed as Anti Terrorism day in India.

• Every year May 21 is observed as Anti-Terrorism day in India. The day is observed in the memory offormer Indian PM Mr. Rajiv Gandhi who passed away on this day. Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated at an election rally near Chennai by a suicide bomber from the LTTE on 21 May 1991. On this day the Centre intends to spread awareness among the people about the danger of terrorism and violence and its effect on the people, society and the country as a whole.

• The Ministry of Home Affairs requested all Varsities and affiliated colleges to observe the day. • The objective behind the observance of Anti-Terrorism Day is to wean away the people from terrorism and violence. Its motive is to promote unity, peace and harmony across the nation.

• The Purpose of observing World Anti-Terrorism Day is:

• To spread the message of global peace and non-violence

• Deter vulnerable youth from following cult practices and being misguided

• Commemorate and honor the sacrifices made by thousands of soldiers who battled against terrorism

• Pay homage to the victims who lost their lives in terrorist attacks

• Device ways and hold awareness programs to protect future generations from radical influence.

• On this day Anti- terrorism pledge is taken in all government offices, PSU and in other public organisations. Events like debates, discussions, symposiums, seminars lectures will be held in schools, colleges and in universities on dangers of terrorism.

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Important Current Affairs of 17th May

NATIONAL:

Lokpal website launched in the country.

• The website of the Lokpal www.lokpal.gov.in has been launched in India. It was inaugurated by Chairperson Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose in presence of all the Members of Lokpal in New Delhi.

• It provides basic information about the working and functioning of the anti-corruption ombudsman.

• The Lokpal is the first institution of its kind in India established under the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013to inquire and investigate into allegations of the corruption against public functionaries.

About the Lokpal Act:

The Lokpal Act, which was passed in 2013 after a nationwide anti-corruption movement. The act provides for setting up of Lokpal at the centre and Lokayuktas in the States.

• It has jurisdiction over all Members of Parliament, central government employees, and top functionaries and public servants, including the Prime Minister and the Chief Ministers in cases of corruption.

About Lokpal:

The Lokpal consists of a Chairperson and eight members. Four of the judicial members have been former Chief Justices of different High Courts and the four non-judicial members have been from All India Services/Central Services.

• First Chairperson of the Lokpal is Shri Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose is a former Judge of Supreme Court of India and was a sitting member of National Human Rights Commission.

• Judicial members are Shri Justice Dilip B Bhosale, Shri Justice Pradip Kumar Mohanty, Smt. Justice Abhilasha Kumari, Shri Justice Ajay Kumar Triphathi.

Non-Judicial members are Shri Dinesh Kumar Jain, Smt. Archana Ramasundaram, Shri Mahender Singh, Dr. Indrajeet Prasad Gautam.

CBIC introduced weightage system for appointments under compassionate appointment scheme.

• Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) introduced a weighting system for appointments under compassionate grounds which will be based on nine criteria like family income, dependents, remaining service period of the deceased, etc.

• The main objective is to ensure objectivity, transparency, and uniformity in the selection process for appointments on the compassionate ground.

• The government appoints the dependent member of a government employee under compassionate appointment scheme on the grounds of medical condition or that employee dying in harness.

• The guidelines for appointment are issued by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) and CBIC introduced a weighted points system for its cadres according to the guidelines of DoPT.

INTERNATIONAL:

China to host 2023 Asian Cup.

• China has become the sole contender to host the Asian Cup Football tournament in 2023. The announcement came after South Korea has announced to withdraw its bid to host the game.

The Korea Football Association (KFA) announced that it had pulled out to strategically focus on a joint bid with North Korea to host the Women’s World Cup in the same year.

• China's interest to host:

• In February 2013, China suggested interest in hosting the 2019 AFC Asian Cup. However, in September 2013, the CFA withdrew its bid.

• In late 2015, the CFA confirmed their intention to bid for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup. In March 2019 China had officially proposed to bid for the 2023 Asian Cup. China has previously hosted the 2004 Asian Cup.

About 2023 AFC Asian Cup:

The 2023 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup will be the 18th edition of the AFC Asian Cup. It is organised by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).  The tournament will involve 24 national teams.

Taiwan becomes 1st Asian country to legalise same-sex marriage.

• Taiwan has become the first Asian country to legalise same-sex marriage following a vote on Friday. In 2017, the island's constitutional court ruled that same-sex couples had the right to legally marry. Taiwan's parliament was given a two-year deadline and was required to pass the changes by May 24.

About Taiwan:

• Taiwan, officially the Republic of China, is a state in East Asia. Neighbouring states include the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the northeast, and the Philippines to the south.

• Capital: Taipei

• Dialing code: +886

• Currency: New Taiwan dollar

• Official scripts: Traditional Chinese; Formosan Latin alphabet;

• GDP (nominal): 2018 estimate

• Official languages: Mandarin Chinese, Taiwanese Mandarin, Standard Mandarin.

AGREEMENTS AND MOUS:

Sony, Microsoft partners to build future cloud solutions for gaming and content streaming.

• Sony and Microsoft have announced a partnership to build future cloud solutions supporting both gaming and content streaming alongside AI solutions.   

• PlayStation maker Sony will use Xbox maker Microsoft's data centres and Azure cloud computing service for its existing game and streaming platforms. In return, Microsoft will gain access to Sony's image sensors.

• The partnership comes as Google works to disrupt the video game world with a Stadia platform that will let players stream blockbuster titles to any device they wish. The Stadia platform will open to gamers later this year in the United States, Canada, Britain and other parts of Europe.

• Google is focused on working with game makers to tailor titles for play on Stadia. It has already provided the technology to more than 100 game developers. The Stadia tech platform aims to connect people for interactive play on PCs, tablets, smartphones and other devices.

• Streaming games from the cloud brings the potential to tap into massive amounts of computing power in data centers.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS:

Retd. Justice Lokur appointed as a judge of SC of Fijis non resident panel.

• The Retired judge of Indian Supreme Court Justice Madan B Lokur is appointed as ajudge of Supreme Court of Fiji's non-resident panel. He has been appointed in the new role for a period of three years.

• The Supreme Court of Fiji has three sessions in a year. Justice Lokur will join it for the session from August 15 to August 30, 2019.

• Justice Lokur was retired as a Supreme Court justice on December 31, 2018. It is likely that Justice Lokur received the offer from Chief Justice of the Fiji Supreme Court on the day of his retirement itself.

About Justice Lokur:

Justice Lokur became a judge of the Supreme Court on June 4, 2012. He enrolled as an advocate in July 1977 and practised in the Delhi High Court and Supreme Court.

He became an Advocate on Record in the Supreme Court in 1981 and was designated Senior Advocate in 1997. He was appointed Additional Solicitor General in 1998 and continue in that position until February 1999 when he became an Additional Judge of the Delhi High Court and made a permanent judge in July 1999.

• Fiji:

President: George Konrote

Prime Minister: Frank Bainimarama

Capital: Suva

Currency: Fijian dollar (FJD)

Cyril Ramaphosa re-elected as President of South Africa.

• African National Congress (ANC) won South African elections with majority and secured 57.51 percent votes and Cyril Ramaphosa elected as South African President.

Last year in February 2018, Cyril Ramaphosa elected as South African President after President Jacob Zuma resigned from the post due to charges of corruption

This was the first time that African National Congress has got less than 60 percent votes in national polls.

• About South Africa

Capital: Cape Town, Pretoria, Bloemfontein

Currency: South African rand

Former Apple retail chief & Burberry CEO joins Airbnb board.

• US-based home-renting platform Airbnb has appointed Angela Ahrendts, former Senior Vice President of Retail at Apple, as its third independent non-affiliated board member. Ahrendts joined Apple in 2014 after serving as CEO of the British fashion house Burberry for eight years. Notably, Ahrendts had been one of the highest-paid employees at Apple with total compensation of $26.5 million in 2018.

About Airbnb:

• Airbnb,  Inc., headquartered in San Francisco,

•  operates a global online marketplace and hospitality service accessible via its websites and mobile apps.

• Members can use the service to arrange or offer lodging, primarily homestays, or tourism experiences.

• Founded: August 2008, San Francisco, California, United States

• Revenue: 260 crores USD (2017)

• CEO: Brian Chesky (Aug 2008–)

• Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States

• Founders: Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk, Joe Gebbia

• Subsidiaries: HotelTonight, Tilt.com, Accomable, Aibiying, MORE

About Angela Ahrendts:

• Angela Jean Ahrendts, DBE is an American businesswoman and was the senior vice president of retail at Apple Inc.

• She was the CEO of Burberry from 2006 to 2014. Ahrendts left Burberry to join Apple in 2014.

• Born: 12 June 1960 (age 58 years), New Palestine, Indiana, United States

• Salary: US$73.1 million (2014)

• Net worth: $150 million

• Spouse: Gregg Couch

• Residence: California, US; London, England

• Siblings: Kimberly Ahrendts, Carrie Ahrendts, Amy Montefalco, Amanda Ahrendts

DAYS:

Sikkim Statehood Day - 16th May.

• Sikkim celebrated its 43rd statehood day. It was on May 16, 1975 that Sikkim had officially become a state under the Union of India and Kazi Lhendup Dorjee became its first chief minister. Sikkim has the highest number of employees on the government payroll constituting about 14 percent of its population. It officially became the 22nd state of the country.

• About Sikkim

Capital: Gangtok

Chief Minister: Pawan Chamling

World Hypertension Day is celebrated on 17th May.

• World Hypertension Day (WHD) is celebrated on 17th May. WHD was designated and initiated by the World Hypertension League (WHL). The day was initiated to increase the awareness of hypertension. This was especially important because of the lack of appropriate knowledge among hypertensive patients.

• The WHL launched its first WHD on May 14, 2005. Since 2006, the WHL has been dedicating May 17 of every year as WHD. The theme for World Hypertension Day 2019 is Know Your Numbers. The theme is with a goal of increasing high blood pressure (BP) awareness in all populations around the world. In 2019, WHL in conjunction with the International Society of Hypertension (ISH) will also promote May Measurement Month (MMM).

• World Hypertension League (WHL):

It was established in 1966. WHL an umbrella to organizations of 85 national hypertension societies and leagues.

World Telecommunication Day is observed on 17 May.

• World Telecommunication Day is celebrated annually on 17 May since 1969. It marks the founding of International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention in 1865, Paris.

It was instituted by the Plenipotentiary Conference in Malaga-Torremolinos in 1973.

The day is celebrated with a view to:

• stimulate reflection and exchanges of ideas on the theme adopted by the Council

• debate the various aspects with all partners in society

• formulate a report reflecting national discussions on the issues underlying the theme, to be fed back to ITU and the rest of its membership

Main Objective:

Setting standards is a fundamental pillar of ITU's mission as the specialized agency of the United Nations for information and communication technologies (ICTs). ITU standards help accelerate ICTs for all Sustainable Development Goals.

Theme 2019:

The theme for 2019 is Bridging the standardization gap. The 2019 theme will allow ITU Membership and other key stakeholders to focus on the opportunities for:

• participation of developing countries in ITU's standards-making process

• empowering local experts in the standardization process at the national, regional and international levels

• promoting the implementation of international standards in developing countries.

AWARDS:

Sir Andy Murray received the knighthood award for services at Buckingham Palace.

• Sir Andy Murray, who is a Unicef UK ambassador, received the knighthood for services to tennis and charity at Buckingham Palace. The Honours award are used to recognise merit in terms of achievement and service. The three-time Grand Slam champion was named in the Queen's New Years Honours in 2016, following his second Wimbledon win and second Olympic gold.

Sir Andy revealed in January that he planned to retire after this year's Wimbledon, forcing back tears as he told reporters at the Australian Open that his hip injury was going to bring a premature end to his glittering career. He had surgery in January and has since begun his rehabilitation

• United Kingdom:

Monarch: Elizabeth II

Prime Minister: Theresa May

Capital: London

Currency: Pound sterling(GBP; £)

National/Official language: English

• Sir Andrew Barron Murray:

He is a British professional tennis player from Scotland. He ranked No. 217 in men's singles (as of May 2019).

Murray represents Great Britain in his sporting activities. He is a three-time Grand Slam tournament winner, two-time Olympic champion, Davis Cup champion, winner of the 2016 ATP World Tour Finals and former world No. 1.

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