Daily GK Update - 22nd May 2015 Current Affairs
1. TN CM O Panneerselvam resigns, makes way for Jayalalithaa to take over
i. Tamil Nadu chief minister O Panneerselvam handed over his resignation to Governor K Rosiah, making way for AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa to take over the administrative reins.
ii. Popularly referred to as 'caretaker CM', this was Panneerselvam's second stint as Tamil Nadu chief minister, both for brief periods.
2. Government relaxes FDI norms for NRIs, PIOs, OCI
i. Aiming to attract overseas funds, government decided that non-repatriable investments by NRIs, OCIs and PIOs will be treated as domestic investments and will not be subject to foreign direct investment caps.
ii. The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, had approved amendments, including changes in definition of NRIs, to be incorporated in the FDI policy.
iii. Investments by NRIs under under Schedule 4 of FEMA regulations will be deemed to be domestic investment at par with the investment made by residents, an official statement said.
iv. The Cabinet's decision is expected to result in increased investments across sectors and greater inflow of foreign exchange remittance leading to economic growth of the country.
v. The government had earlier raised the FDI limit in sectors such as defence, insurance, real estate, railways and medical devices.
3. Obama Names Yale Professor to Key Administration Post
i. Akhil Amar, an Indian American professor at Yale University, was nominated by President Barack Obama to the National Council on the Humanities, a key administration post.
ii. Akhil Reed Amar is the Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale, a position he has held since 2008, where he teaches constitutional law.
iii. He has been a professor at both Yale Law School and Yale College since 1985 and has held various professorships, including Southmayd Professor from 1993 to 2008, professor from 1990 to 1993, associate professor from 1988 to 1990, and assistant professor from 1985 to 1988.
4. Finance Ministry sanctions Rs 5,223-crore fuel subsidy for IOC, BPCL
i. Indian Oil Corp (IOC) will get Rs 2,932 crore subsidy and Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) Rs 2,291 crore for selling fuel below cost in Q4 of 2014-15, but Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL) will not get any support.
ii. The Finance Ministry has sanctioned Rs 5,223 crore fuel subsidy for the January-March quarter to cover almost all of the revenue loss that the two retailers suffered on selling domestic cooking gas (LPG) and kerosene at government rates.
iii. With this, the total subsidy provided by the government in 2014-15 goes up to Rs 27,308 crore. For the first three quarters, the government had provided Rs 22,085 crore.
iv. The fuel retailers had lost a total of Rs 72,314 crore on selling diesel (up to October 17), LPG and kerosene at government rates, which were way below cost in 2014-15.
5. IAF's Mirage-2000 lands on Yamuna eway in successful runway trial
i. In an attempt to practise using highways for emergency landings, an IAF Mirage 2000 jet successfully test landed on the Yamuna Expressway in Uttar Pradesh.
ii. According to IAF, the aircraft made a practise approach on the highway, coming down to a height of 100 metres before landing off the next approach.
iii. The operations were conducted with active support from the government of Uttar Pradesh, Yamuna Expressway Authority, toll authorities of JP Infratech and Civil Police.
iv. The IAF has plans to activate more such stretches on highways in the future.
6. Gujarat government signs pact with ZTEsoft for smartcity projects
i. Gujarat government and Chinese software firm ZTEsoft have entered into an agreement for smartcity projects in the state.
ii. The memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed in Shenzhen during visit Gujarat Chief Minister Anandi Ben Patel with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to China.
iii. The agreement was signed by Gujarat's Industries Commissioner Mamta Verma and ZTEsoft CFO Xu Shan in presence of Gujarat CM along with other state officials.
iv. Chinese telecom gear maker ZTE's software arm, ZTEsoft, and Gujarat government will jointly work to find the target city and area and after technical closure, both team will work together to set up a trial project in the state.
7. IRCTC Partners With MyDala To Offer Deals To Ticket Buyers
i. Ticketing arm of Indian Railway IRCTC doesn’t seem to leave any opportunity to capitalise its reach and traction. After partnering with Amazon and Paytm, the government-owned ticketing portal has partnered with mydala to provide deals and offers to customers.
ii. The partnership will give travelers access to the best deals and offers while booking their tickets.
iii. This partnership is an IRCTC’s move to deliver significant improvement in customer experience. This is the third partnership in a row this year by IRCTC.
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