Daily GK Update: 11th and 12th November, 2015 Important Current Affairs

1. Jayant Sinha is planning to meet Chief Executives of State-run banks every 45 days
i. Jayant Sinha, Minister of State for Finance, is planning to meet Chief Executives of State-run banks every 45 days to take stock of various performance parameters and discuss evolving issues.
ii. The move comes at a time when public sector banks are witnessing increasing pressure on asset quality, which is eroding their capital and profitability. This meeting is in addition to the meeting with the Union Finance Minister, which takes place every quarter, primarily to review the quarterly performance of banks.

2. Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd. (IHFL) has acquired a 40 per cent stake in OakNorth Bank of the U.K. 
i. Sameer Gehlaut led Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd. (IHFL) has acquired a 40 per cent stake in OakNorth Bank of the U.K. for $100 million, making it the largest shareholder of a full service universal bank. 
ii. The investment has been identified and approved by the Strategic Investment Committee for Liability Franchise Develop- ment, headed by K. C. Chakrabarty, an independent director on the board and ex-Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India.

3. Rhythm and Blues legend Allen Toussaint died
i. Rhythm and Blues legend Allen Toussaint died at the age of 77 after suffering two heart attacks.
ii. The legendary New Orleans R&B songwriter and producer, known for hit songs such as ‘Working in the coalmine’ and ‘Southern Nights’ — suffered a heart attack shortly after performing on stage at Madrid’s Teatro Lara , according to Spanish newspaper El Mundo.

4. SBI has announced partnership deal with Emirates NBD
i. A leading UAE-based bank has announced a partnership deal with State Bank of India to help NRI customers in the gulf to carry out their remittances instantly and more conveniently.
ii. Emirates NBD has expanded its partner bank network in India to include State Bank of India (SBI) for the DirectRemit 60 seconds remittance platform.
iii. With this partnership, the bank’s Non-Resident Indian (NRI) customers who also bank with SBI can now avail themselves of the fastest remittance service in the UAE more easily.

5. Budweiser maker Anheuser-Busch InBev finalized takeover of SAB Miller 
i. Anheuser-Busch InBev says it has finalized the terms of a $107 billion takeover of SABMiller that will combine the planet’s two biggest brewers and create a company that makes almost a third of the beer consumed worldwide.
ii. As part of the deal, SABMiller will sell its stake in a venture with Molson Coors. 
iii. AB InBev is seeking to bolster growth by acquiring SABMiller’s brands in Africa and Asia as changing tastes and craft beers cut sales in developed markets. The two companies own hundreds of brands including Budweiser, Corona, Grolsch and Stella Artois.

6. Ministry of Railways issued Letter of Award to GE Global Sourcing India Pvt Limited
i. Ministry of Railways issued a Letter of Award (LoA) to USA-based GE Global Sourcing India Pvt Limited for setting up of Diesel Locomotive Factory (DLF) at Marhowra, Saran district, Bihar and for procurement and maintenance of mainline Diesel Electric Locomotives.
ii. With this, a Joint Venture Company between Union Ministry of Railways and GE Global Sourcing India Pvt Limited will be formed soon to construct and run the factory. The factory will manufacture modern diesel electric locomotives of 4500 HP and 6000 HP to Indian railways.  
iii. The Railways Ministry will hold 26 percent equity in the JV Company subject to a maximum of 100 crore rupees. The factory is expected to be established within a period of three years at a cost of about 1000 crore rupees.

7. Union Government issued notification for implementation of OROP
i. Union Government issued the notification regarding implementation of One Rank One Pension (OROP) in respect of Defence Forces personnel. The notification is in tune with the modalities for implementation announced on 5 September 2015.
ii. Features of OROP scheme -
• Pension will be re-fixed for all pensioners retiring in the same rank and with the same length of service as the average of minimum and maximum pension in 2013. 
• The benefit will be given with effect from 1 July 2014 to the ex-service men of all the three forces.
• Those drawing pensions above the average will be protected.
• In future, the pension would be re-fixed every 5 years.
• Arrears will be paid in four half-yearly instalments.
• All widows, including war widows, will be paid arrears in one instalment.
• Personnel who voluntarily retire will not be covered under the scheme.
• The estimated cost to the exchequer would be 8000 to 10000 crore at present, and will increase further in future.

8. Supreme Court upheld Kerala Government’s ban on online lotteries
i. The Supreme Court of India (SC) upheld Kerala Government’s ban on online lotteries.
ii. The judgment was delivered by a bench headed by the Chief Justice of India (CJI) H L Dattu while hearing the All Kerala Online Lottery Dealers Association Vs State of Kerala & Ors. case in which Sikkim Government is also one of the petitioners opposing the ban.
iii. While upholding the ban, the bench stated that lottery is a form of gambling and it was condemned as a vice by the Rigveda, Smritis and Arthashastra.

9. Belgian court ordered Facebook to stop tracking non-members
i. A court of Belgium asked Facebook to stop tracking the country's Internet users who are not members of the US-based social networking website. It gave 48 hours to the social networking site to stop tracking people in Belgium.
ii. The ruling was pronounced on a case lodged in June 2015 by the Belgian Privacy Commission, which said Facebook indiscriminately tracks Internet users when they click like or share on the website. It said that the site uses a special cookie called Datr that lodges on internet users’ device to track their activities.
iii. The court said that the company was obliged to obtain consent to collect the information being gathered. If Facebook fails to comply, it could face a fine of up to 250000 euros (269000 dollars) per day to the Belgian Privacy Commission.

10. Richard Proud-chaired Independent Commission on Doping in Sports submitted its report to WADA
i. Richard Proud-chaired Independent Commission (IC) on Doping in Sports submitted its report to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). The report was submitted on 9 November 2015 in Vienna, Switzerland.
ii. WADA launched the IC in December 2014 to investigate the validity of allegations of doping practices, corrupt practices around sample collection, results management, etc that implicate Russian Government agencies, labs, athletes, coaches among others.
iii. The allegations were based on a documentary titled Top Secret Doping: How Russia makes its Winners that was aired by the German television channel ARD.

11. Odisha's Barabati stadium excluded from BCCI's new Test venues
i. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on 9 November 2015 excluded Barabati stadium in Cuttack, Odisha from the list of newly declared Test venues. 
ii. Barabati Stadium was excluded from the list after Cricket fans hurled plastic bottled onto the ground forcing the match referees to stop the match for some time.


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