Current Affairs, News & Facts of 09 Apr 2016

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  • Rajasthan becomes first state to clear land title Bill

     

    Rajasthan becomes first state to clear land title BillRajasthan has become the first state to pass land title bill as the State Assembly passed the Rajasthan Urban Land (Certification of Titles) Bills, 2016. The legislation was passed by the state assembly through a voice vote.

    It means the state residents living in urban areas, which are governed by the municipalities or state development authorities, can seek a certificate of ownership of their lands by paying a nominal fee to the state government.

    Rajasthan Urban Land (Certification of Titles) Bills, 2016

    (1) The state government will set up an authority which will be headed by an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) Officers. The authority will seek all the documents from the landowners, and will verify it against records held by the state.

    (2) The authority will first issue a provisional certificate, for which the state will not stand guarantee. If there are no objections or dispute arises, the authority will issue a certificate and a map to the owner other land or property with state guarantee.

    (3) Currently, it is kept voluntary for the owners to apply for this certificate. The state government has kept the application fee of 0.5% of the land rate determined by a district level committee to encourage more people to join this new scheme.

    (4) The bill  is seen as one of the key steps towards land reforms as it will create an efficient and transparent modern land market, provide certainty of tenure and end litigation that often mires development projects.

    Comment : This Bill is seen as one of the key steps towards land reforms as it will lead to transparency and will create a sense of confidence among land owners. Disputes and frauds in land deals will be brought to a stop through its implementation. A titling law is both consumer- and industry-friendly, and also empowers poor, often marginal, farmers.

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  • Mother Teresa conferred with Founders Award posthumously

     

    Mother Teresa conferred with Founders Award posthumouslyMother Teresa has been posthumously conferred with the UK’s prestigious Founders Award 2016, which is given to recognise and reward exemplary achievements of people within the global Asian community. Teresa’s only living relative Agi Bojazhiu (niece) collected the award on her behalf.

    Mother Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity and spent 45 years serving the poor, the sick, the orphaned, and the dying on the streets of Kolkata. She died at the age of 87 in Kolkata in 1997.

    The Founders Awards recognise and reward exemplary achievement across 14 categories that include business, philanthropy, entertainment, culture and sport. Winners in other categories are :

    1. Community Service award: Rami Ranger, a leading NRI entrepreneur and philanthropist who contributed 100000 pounds for the Mahatma Gandhi statue.
    2. Business Leader of the Year award: Prakash Lohia, Chairman and co-founder of Indorama Corporation. 
    3. Outstanding achievement in Television’ award: Kunal Nayyar, actor from the hit American comedy series The Big Bang Theory.
    4. Outstanding Achievement in Cinema award: Asif Kapadia, he is Oscar and BAFT-winning documentary-maker
    5. Outstanding achievement in Sports award: Tottenham Hotspurs football star Son Heung-Min of South Korea
    6. Outstanding achievement in Science and Technology: Shuji Nakamura, inventor of the blue LED.
    7. Social Entrepreneur of the year award: Vikram Patel, the leading mental health researcher of India.
    8. Entrepreneur of the Year award: Anil Agrawal, founder and Executive Chairman of the metal and mining company, Vedanta Resources Corporation

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  • Veteran journalist Yogendra Bali passes away

     

    Veteran journalist Yogendra Bali passes awayVeteran journalist and author Yogendra Bali died in New Delhi following a brief illness. He was 86. In his long career, Bali served The Times of India as its roving correspondent till retirement.

    He was also associated with a number of newspapers and publications: The Tribune, Current Weekly, Probe, Sunday Mail, The Day After, Asia Defence News International and Mastana Jogi.

    Bali was a member of the general council of the Lalit Kala Akademi and a member of its committees on Art Education, Publications, the Triennele and International Exhibitions.

    Books authored : (i) The Communal Bogey (ii) Chandra Shekhar: A Political Biography (iii) Pawan Chamling: Daring To Be Different (iv) Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji and Freedom Movement of India.

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  • Saudi Arabia and Egypt to build bridge over the Red Sea

     

    Saudi Arabia and Egypt to build bridge over the Red SeaSaudi Arabia and Egypt have reached an agreement to build a bridge over the Red Sea connecting the two countries to boost trade as the two countries signed 17 agreements to enhance bilateral ties. The announcement in this regard was made by Saudi Arabia’s king Salman, who is on a five-days official visit to Egypt.

    However it was not mentioned where the bridge would be built, but the closest points between the two countries are Nabq, just north of Sharm el-Sheikh, in Egypt, and Alsheikh Hamid, in Saudi Arabia- the two countries are 16km apart.

    A Red Sea bridge linking the two countries has been proposed several times before but has failed to become a reality. Previous estimates for the bridge project suggested a cost of around $3-4bn but no further information has yet been released.

    Saudi Arabia -Egypt relations

    Saudi Arabia is one of the top foreign investors in Egypt, with more than $8bn pledged late last year in sectors such as tourism, agriculture and information technology. Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries have supported Egypt with billions of dollars since President Sisi took power in 2013 following mass street protests.

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  • Sajibu Cheiraoba festival celebrated in Manipur 

     

    Sajibu Cheiraoba festival celebrated in Manipur Sajibu Cheiraoba the traditional festival of Manipur was celebrated by Meiteis community (a majority ethnic group) of Manipur with cultural gusto and religious fervor.  The festival is mainly observed on the first lunar day of the lunar month Sajibu (March/April) and so it is also popularly known as Sajibu Cheiraoba.

    Celebrations : On this day people of Manipur clean and decorate their houses and make a sumptuous variety of dishes to feast upon after offering food to the deity on this day.

    After the feast, as a part of the rituals, people climb the "CHEIRAOCHING" located in Chingmeirong or the nearest hill tops; in the belief that it would elevate them to greater heights in their worldly life. Thabal Chongba, a local folk dance is also being organized at different locations of Manipur valley.

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  • WTO cuts 2016 global trade forecast to 2.8%

     

    WTO cuts 2016 global trade forecast to 2.8%The World Trade Organization (WTO) has revised its 2016 global trade updated forecast for 2016 downward by more than one percentage point to 2.8% from 3.9% as slowdown in China and broad market volatility continued to threaten growth.

    In September, the WTO estimated that global trade would rise by 3.9 per cent this year, but lowered that projection to 2.8 per cent, in an updated forecast.

    WTO said that various factors were continuing to apply downward pressure on global commerce. The rout on commodities prices has shown few signs of reversing, while the full extent of the slowdown in China which is the world's top commodities consumer remains uncertain.

    Comment : The 2.8 per cent growth forecast could prove to be an underestimate if efforts by the European Central Bank to stimulate eurozone growth are successful.

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  • World Bank launches ambitious climate action plan 

     

    World Bank launches ambitious climate action plan The World Bank has unveiled an ambitious climate action plan that (i) Willl help developing countries to add 30 gigawatts of renewable energy (ii) Universal access to early-warning systems (iii) Develop climate-smart agriculture investment plans for at least 40 nations. 

    It seeks to help developing countries make major transitions to increase sources of renewable energy, decrease high-carbon energy sources, develop green transport systems, and build sustainable, livable cities for growing urban populations. 

    The target for achieving this is over the next five years i.e. by 2020. The details of the Climate Change Action Plan came  just two weeks before world leaders officially signed the landmark Paris Agreement in New York.

    Funding : International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group will expand its climate investments from the current $2.2 billion a year to a goal of $3.5 billion a year, and leverage an additional $13 billion a year in private sector financing by 2020. The World Bank also intends to mobilise $25 billion in commercial financing for clean energy over the next five years.

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  • Union Government constitutes B B Tandon Committee to monitor Government Advertisements

     

    Government constitutes B B Tandon Committee to monitor Government AdvertisementsThe Information and Broadcasting Ministry has constituted a three-member panel, headed by former Chief Election Commissioner ( CEC) B B Tandon to see that guidelines set for government advertisements by the Supreme Court are followed. Senior TV journalist Rajat Sharma and ad-man Piyush Pandey will be the other two members of the committee.

    Background :

    (1) In May 2015, the Supreme Court had laid down norms for government advertisements and also directed the central government to constitute a three-member committee "consisting of persons with unimpeachable neutrality and impartiality" to regulate the issue of public advertisements. 

    (2) Following the order, the I&B Ministry had constituted a three-member selection committee comprising Press Council Chairman Justice (retd) C K Prasad, I&B Secretary Sunil Arora and advertising professional Prasoon Joshi which chose the three names. 

    May 2015 order of Supreme Court : In its May 2015 order, the Supreme Court  had issued Guidelines on Regulating Government Advertisements based on recommendations of Prof NR Madhava Menon Committee and barred publication of photos of leaders in government advertisements except those of the President, Prime Minister and the Chief Justice of India.

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