Daily GK Update 2nd March 2016, Important Current Affairs

1. Three British scientists win 2016 Brain Prize

i. Three British scientists have won a prestigious 2016 Grete Lundbeck European Brain Research Prize (also known as Brain Prize) for giving vital insight how the human brain remembers, learns and navigates.
Three British scientists win 2016 Brain Prize
ii. These scientists are 
Timothy Bliss: He is a visiting worker at the Crick Institute in London. 
Graham Collingridge: He is professor of neuroscience in anatomy at the University of Bristol. He is also head of the Department of Physiology at the University of Toronto. 
Richard Morris: He is a professor of neuroscience at the University of Edinburgh

2. Military Exercise Force Eighteen begins in Pune

i. The multinational Military Exercise Force Eighteen conducted by Indian Army has started in at Pune, Maharashtra. In this seven-day military exercise (till March 8, 2016) over 300 participants from 18 ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Plus countries are participating.
ii.  Participating countries ASEAN countries along with ASEAN Plus nations viz. India, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, China, South Korea, Russia and US . 
iii. 10 ASEAN countries from South East Asia are Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

3. IFC launches Uridashi Masala Bonds

i. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the investment arm of the World Bank has launched its first Uridashi Masala Bonds (Japanese bonds).
ii.  These masala bonds were launched to mobilise 30 crore rupees from Japanese retail investors and will be sold to Japanese household investors. 
iii. The proceeds from these bonds will be used for promoting private sector development in India. JP Morgan is the sole arranger of the bonds and Daisen Hinomaru Securities is its distributor.

4. Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain appointed as Chief of Staff of Eastern Naval Command 

i. Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain took over as the Chief of Staff of the Visakhapatnam headquartered Eastern Naval Command. 
ii. He succeeds Vice Admiral Bimal Verma who has been transferred as Commander-in-Chief of Andaman & Nicobar Command at Port Blair.

5. Rahul Sachdev wins 1st All India Open Invitational Snooker Championship 2016

i. Rahul Sachdev has won the first All India Open Invitational Snooker Championship 2016 held at Aurangabad in Maharashtra. In the final match, Rahul defeated Pushpender Singh of Indian Railways by 5-3 score. 
ii. It was his maiden title and is considered as major breakthrough in his career after winning this title. To reach final, Rahul had defeated Laxman Rawat of Indian Railways by 5-1 score whereas Pushpender Singh had defeated Kamal Chawla of Indian Railways by 5-1 score in the semifinals.
iii. All India Open Invitational Snooker Championship 2016 was organized by Billiards and Snooker Association of Aurangabad and was not having any relation with Cue Sports India.

6. Indira Gandhi International Airport wins three international awards

i. Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) has won three international awards for 2015 year given by the Airports Council International (ACI). In the ACI’s Airport Service Quality (ASQ) survey, IGAI has scored 4.96 on a scale of 1 to 5.
ii.  IGIA has won 
- Retained World’s number one airport for consecutive second year in 25 to 40 Million Passengers Per Annum (MPPA) category. 
- Best airport by size & region Asia Pacific (25-40 MPPA). 
- Second best airport by region (Asia Pacific).

7. Portugal nominated ex-refugee chief Antonio Guterres for UN Secretary-General

i. Portugal Government nominated former Portuguese Prime Minister and head of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) Antonio Guterres as a candidate for General Secretary at United Nations.
ii.Guterres served as Prime Minister in 1995-2002 and as UN Refugee Agency High Commissioner in 2005-2015.
Portugal nominated ex-refugee chief Antonio Guterres for UN Secretary-General
iii. With this, Guterres joined a list of six mostly Eastern and Central European candidates to succeed Ban Ki-moon on 1 January 2017. Ban took the office in January 2007.
iv. According to the UN Charter, the UN Security Council recommends a candidate to the General Assembly, where he or she must garner no less than two-thirds of the votes to be appointed Secretary General.

8. India signed MoU with World Bank for Madhya Pradesh Higher Education Quality Improvement Project

i. India signed a financing agreement for IDA credit of 300 US dollars for the Madhya Pradesh Higher Education Quality Improvement Project with the World Bank.
ii. The project was designed as a result based financing programme in which the funds will be released based on the achievement of specific results or disbursement linked indicators (DLIs).
iii. The DLIs are designed to ensure increase in enrolment of full time students and transition rate, to achieve NAAC accreditation criteria by the participating Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and strengthening of governance structure.

9. Windham-Campbell prizes for the year 2016 announced

i. Columnist and author Jerry Pinto was chosen for the 2016 Windham-Campbell Prize. Pinto, an Indian, won the award for his novel Em and The Big Hoom (published in 2012) in the fiction category.
ii. Em and the Big Hoom was Pinto’s first work of fiction that tells the story of an unnamed narrator’s slow, painful attempt to come to terms with his mother’s bipolar disorder and suicidal tendencies.

10. Cricketer Aaron Phangiso suspended for illegal bowling action

i. International Cricket Council (ICC)  banned South Africa left-arm spinner Aaron Phangiso from bowling. He was banned after his bowling action, which exceeded 15-degree level of tolerance permitted under the regulations, was found illegal.
ii. Phangiso was reported by umpires after helping Highveld Lions reach the final of South Africa's domestic 50-over competition. He was reported for suspect action on 25 February 2016 while playing for Highveld Lions against Warriors at Wanderers.


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