Current Affairs, News & Facts of 31 May 2016

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  • Bleaching kills off 'third of Great Barrier Reef coral'

    Bleaching kills off 'third of Great Barrier Reef coral'Scientists says that mass bleaching has killed more than a third of the coral in the northern and central parts of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

    Australian researchers at Cook University, in Queensland have found that around 35 percent of the coral in the northern and central sections of the reef is dead or dying. 

    The finding are based on  months of aerial and underwater surveys of the 2,300km reef off the country's east coast.

    This year is the third time in 18 years that the Great Barrier Reef has experienced mass bleaching due to global warming.

    The incident is a major blow to the World Heritage Site that attracts about A$5bn ($3.6bn) in tourism each year.

    Global warming a cause of bleaching :

    Bleaching occurs when the water is too warm, forcing coral to expel living algae and causing it to calcify and turn white. Mildly bleached coral can recover if the temperature drops, otherwise it may die.

    Other reefs have suffered even more severely from the recent bleaching; Some Pacific islands, for example, have reported over 80 per cent coral death rates.

  • Alastair Cook becomes youngest to score 10,000 Test runs

    Alastair Cook becomes youngest to score 10,000 Test runsEngland captain Alastair Cook aged 31, five months and five days become the youngest player to score 10,000 Test runs thus breaking a record held earlier by India's cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar for more than a decade.

    He achieved the landmark by reaching five on the fourth day of the second Test against Sri Lanka at Chester-le-Street. Before start of this series Cook, who turned 31 this year had scored 9,964 Test runs, including 28 centuries and 47 fifties. Sachin was 31 years and 10-months-old when he achieved this landmark against Pakistan in Kolkata in March 2005.

    Youngest players to 10,000 Test runs

    Player   Age      Date achieved
    Alastair Cook (England) 31 years, 5 months, 5 days 30 May 2016
    Sachin Tendulkar (India) 31 years, 10 months, 20 days 16 March 2005
    Jacques Kallis (South Africa) 33 years, 4 months, 11 days 27 Feb 2009
    Ricky Ponting (Australia) 33 years, 5 months, 11 days 30 May 2008
    Mahela Jayawardene (Sri Lanka) 34 years, 6 months, 29 days 26 Dec 2011
  • Rahman to get top Japanese culture prize

    Music maestro A R Rahman has been announced as the recipient of Grand Fukuoka Prize 2016 for his outstanding contribution to Asian culture through his music.

    A R Rahman has been chosen for the honour alongside Philippines historian Ameth R Ocampo (Academic Prize) and Yasmeen Lari from Pakistan (Arts and Culture Prize) by the secretariat of Fukuoka prize committee.

    Grand Fukuoka Prize 2016 :

    Grand Fukuoka Prize, was established by Fukuoka City, Japan, in 1990 with an aim to honour the outstanding work of individuals, groups and organizations working to preserve and promote the unique and diverse culture of Asia.

    Previous winners of the Grand Fukuoka Prize from India include distinguished names such as sitar player Ravi Shankar, dancer Padma Subrahmanyam, historian Romila Thapar, sarod maestro Amjad Ali Khan, Ashish Nandy, Partha Chatterjee, Vandana Shiva, Nalini Malini and historian Ramachandra Guha.

  • Sunil Lanba takes charge as Navy chief

    Sunil Lanba takes charge as Navy chiefVice Admiral Sunil Lanba, took over as the new Chief of the Naval Staff  today as the current CNS Admiral R.K.Dhowan retired after four decade of service.

    Key things to know about Admiral Sunil Lanba :

    Vice Admiral Sunil Lanba born on 17 July 1957 is an alumnus of the National Defense Academy (NDA), Defense Services Staff College, Royal College of Defense Studies and also has a PG in Defense and Management studies. He was commissioned in 1978 into the Executive Branch of the Navy. 

    In a service spanning nearly 38 years, Vice-Admiral Lanba has served in a variety of Command, operational and staff appointments. He served as Vice-Chief, headed the Southern Naval command and the National Defence College. 

    He has commanded four frontline warships  INS Kakinada (minesweeper), INS Himgiri (frigate) and destroyers INS Ranvijay and INS Mumbai. Vice Admiral Lanba is a recipient of the Param Vishist Seva Medal and the Athi Vishist Seva Medal for distinguished service of an exceptionally high order.

  • May 31 : World No-Tobacco Day 2016

    World No Tobacco Day is observed across the globe on May 31 every year. It is aimed at encouraging people to abstain from consuming tobacco for 24 hours and raising awareness about the hazardous effects of tobacco consumption on a person's health and well-being.

    World No Tobacco Day 2016 theme : "Get ready for plain packaging" 

    On the eve of World No Tobacco Day 2016 the World Health Organization has urged the member nations for plain packaging of tobacco products as it will reduce the attractiveness of tobacco products, restrict the use of tobacco packaging as a form of advertising, limits misleading packaging and labelling and increases the effectivness of health warnings. 

    New Zealand and various other countries have introduced the plain packaging on tobacco products despite the threat of legal action from the industry. Plain packaging means cigarettes must be sold in boxes plastered with health warnings and gruesome pictures of smoking-related diseas

    Hazardous effects of tobacco consumption

    • The average age of initiation of tobacco use in India is 19 years and three months. According to the recently-released Global Adult Tobacco Survey, about 35 per cent of the adults in India consume tobacco in some form or the other.
    • The estimated number of tobacco users in India is 27.5 crore, with 16.37 crore users of smokeless tobacco, 6.9 crore only smokers and 4.23 crore users of both smoking and smokeless tobacco.
    • Tobacco use is responsible for nearly 6 million deaths each year worldwide, 600,000 of which are the result of non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke.
  • Vice Admiral AR Karve takes charge of Southern Naval Command

    Vice-Admiral AR Karve took charge as the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Southern Naval Command (SNC) from Vice Admiral Girish Luthra who has been appointed as the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command. Prior to this appointment, he was serving as the Chief of Personnel at IHQ MoD (Navy), at Delhi.

    Vice-Admiral A R Karve

    • Vice Admiral AR Karve who joined the Indian Navy on 01 Jul 80 is the alumnus of the National Defence Academy (NDA), Pune. He is an anti-submarine warfare specialist with rich experience of 35 years. 
    • In his distinguished service he has held several important operational and staff appointments both at sea as well as ashore.
    • He commanded the aircraft carrier INS Viraat as well as the guided missile destroyer INS Ranvijay, the frigate INS Dunagiri and the ASW patrol vessel INS Ajay.

    Awards and Honours: He has been awarded the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal (AVSM) in 2013 for his distinguished service. 

  • NASA successfully deploys space station’s inflatable room

    US space agency NASA has successfully deployed the first experimental inflatable room attached to the International Space Station (ISS).  

    The experimental inflatable room which has been named as BEAM (Bigelow Expandable Activity Module) was deployed after it was successfully tested for it's expansion and pressure.

    About Bigelow Expandable Activity Module ( BEAM ) 

    The 1,400 kg Bigelow Expandable Activity Module ( BEAM ) was built by Las Vegas-based Bigelow Aerospace under a USD 17 million NASA contract.  It will be attached to the ISS for a two-year test and is the first such habitat to hold humans in orbit. 

    It is made up of aluminium and soft fabric which expands in space. It is light weight and also takes minimal space. It is 4 metres long and 3.2 metres in diameter with 16 cubic metres of interior volume when fully expanded.  It creates place for astronauts to live and work.

  • Railways Conduct Trials For High Speed Spanish Talgo Coaches

    Indian Railways (IR)  has conducted the trial run of a nine-coach semi-high-speed train, imported from Spain and manufactured by Madrid-based Talgo on the 90-km Bareilly-to-Moradabad stretch in Uttar Pradesh. 

    The speed of the trial done was 115 kmph by a joint team of the Railway Design Standards Organisation (RDSO) and Spanish train manufacturer Talgo. The train covered 90-km distance in 1 hour 10 minutes.

    However the speed will be increased to 200 kmph on the Mathura-Palwal section and more than 200 kmph during trials on the Delhi-Mumbai route.

    If the trial run gets successful, it would put India into a select club of nations with operational semi-high speed capacity of 160-200 km per hour. As of now, the Delhi-Mumbai Rajdhani Express runs at an average speed of 85 km per hour.

    Key features of Talgo train 

    Talgo trains are light-weight, fast and known for some design features that include articulated bogies  one bogey is shared by two coaches  and independent rotation of wheels that allow smooth negotiation of curves. 

    The 9 coach Talgo train consists of 2 Executive Class cars, 4 Chair Cars, 1 cafeteria, 1 power car and tail-end coach for staff and equipment. Besides reducing travel time, Talgo's lighter trains consume 30 per cent less energy.


  • Real Madrid FC wins 2016 UEFA Champions League

    Real Madrid FC won the 2016 UEFA Champions League for the record 11th time by defeating Atletico Madrid FC by 5-3 goals in penalty shootout. Earlier Real Madrid FC had won UEFA Champions League in 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1966, 1998, 2000, 2002 and 2014.

    In the final match both the teams had scored 1–1 goals in regulation period leading to draw but in tie-breaker penalty shootout Real Madrid FC scored 5 goals against Atletico Madrid which scored only 3 goals. 

    About UEFA Champions League

    The UEFA Champions League is an annual continental club football competition organised by the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) and contested by top-division European clubs.

    It is also most prestigious club competition in European football, played by the national league champion and for some nations of each UEFA national association. 

  • Pakke Tiger Reserve in Arunachal Pradesh wins 2016 India Biodiversity Award

    Pakke Tiger Reserve in East Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh has received the 'India Biodiversity Award 2016'  in the conservation of threatened species category for its Hornbill Nest Adoption Programme.

    Hornbill Nest Adoption Programme

    The Hornbill Nest Adoption Programme has been a major step towards conservation of four hornbill species that are found in the adjoining areas of Pakke Tiger Reserve.

    The Programme is a collaboration of Ghora-Aabhe Society, Nature Conservation Foundation and the Forest Department. Under this programme, urban citizens contribute money to protect hornbill nests around Pakke Tiger Reserve.

    India Biodiversity Award

    • India Biodiversity Awards recognise the contribution of a range of stakeholders towards the conservation of biodiversity. It is given in four categories viz. Conservation of Threatened Species, Sustainable use of biological resources, Successful models for access and benefit sharing and Biodiversity Management Committees.
    • It is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, National Biodiversity Authority and United Nations Development programme. The winner in each category will receive a cash prize of 1 lakh rupees while the runners up receive 50,000 rupees.

2nd Aug

Exam Date : 02-08-2016

Exam Time : 07:15:00

Ques/Time : 6/5 min


Exam Date : 01-08-2016

Exam Time : 06:00:00

Ques/Time : 8/5 min

Todays test

Exam Date : 22-07-2016

Exam Time : 05:10:00

Ques/Time : 3/5 min