Daily GK Updates 24th December 2016, Important Current Affairs

Global Wage Report shows India to be among the worst levels of gender wage disparity

i. According to Global Wage Report, India has among the worst levels of gender wage disparity.
Daily GK Updates 23rd December 2016, Important Current Affairs
ii.Men earning more than women in similar jobs with the gap exceeding 30%, the Global Wage Report 2016-17 released by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).


Important Union Cabinet Approval's: 22 December 2016

1. Union Cabinet Approves Ordinance to amend Payment of Wages Act, 1936
The Centre approved a draft ordinance on December 21, 2016, to empower states and enable industries to pay wages by cheque or by direct credit into bank accounts of workers earning up to Rs. 18,000 a month, without taking their explicit consent.
2. CCEA approves doubling of Rajpura-Bhatinda railway line
The cabinet committee on economic affairs (CCEA) gave its approval for doubling of Rajpura-Bhatinda railway line at an estimated cost of Rs. 1,251.25 crore.
3. Union Cabinet approves sale of part of HAL’s surplus, vacant land
The Union Cabinet on December 21, approved the sale of part of surplus and vacant land of 87.70 acres at Pimpri in Pune, Maharashtra to meet Rs. 821.17 crore net liabilities of Hindustan Antibiotics Ltd (HAL).
4. Cabinet To Launch toll-free number 10588 for pregnant women
The union government will soon set up a toll-free number 10588 to provide relevant information and guidance directly to the pregnant women.

Acclaimed Bengali poet Shankha Ghosh to get 2016 Jnanpith Award

i.Bengali poet and literary critic Shankha Ghosh will get the Jnanpith Award for 2016.
ii. The award is given for exceptional contribution in the field of literature. 
iii.The award was constituted way back in 1965 and He is the sixth Bengali to get this prestigious award.


The External Affairs Ministry's launches Twitter Seva

i.The External Affairs Ministry's have launched a new service called Twitter Seva that will enable timely, transparent and large-scale response to citizens' tweets in real time.
ii.The Twitter Seva service will be supported by 198 Twitter accounts of Indian missions abroad and 29 regional passport offices. 

'Coal Mitra' portal launched to facilitate flexibility in utilization of domestic coal 

i.Power Minister Piyush Goyal has launched 'Coal Mitra' Web Portal to facilitate Flexibility in Utilization of Domestic Coal. 
ii.With this Government has also allowed Coal Swapping between PSUs and the Private Sector. 
iii.This move is aimed at optimum utilisation by private as well as public power companies of the coal. 
iv.The portal will enhance transparency in coal swapping and help reduce operational and logistic costs, bringing tariffs down.

Tata Steel to acquire 100% equity in Brahmani River Pellets,Odisha 

i.Tata Steel has signed an agreement to acquire 100% equity in Odisha-based Brahmani River Pellets (BRPL) for Rs 900 crore.
ii. The deal which will be financed through the company’s internal cash flows is tipped to help Tata Steel as it ramps up capacity at its new plant at Kalinganagar. 

 

Textile Ministry to launch Bunkar Mitra-Handloom Helpline Centre for weavers

i.The Ministry of Textiles has decided to establish a “Bunkar Mitra-Handloom Helpline Centre” where professional queries of weavers will be answered by the experts in the field. 
ii.This helpline will function from 10.00 a.m to 6 p.m. and initially it will be provided 
in 7 languages viz., Hindi, English, and 5 other regional languages (Telugu, Tamil, Kannada Bengali & Assamese).

Odisha Government launches Biju Sishu Surakshya Yojana for HIV+ orphan children

i.Naveen Patnaik launches Biju Sishu Surakshya Yojana to nurture orphan kids.
ii.The state government launched the Biju Sishu Surakshya Yojana, a scheme to nurture the orphan and HIV-infected children residing in different child care institutions and orphanages.


ICICI Bank Launches EazyPay app for Merchants

i.ICICI Bank has now launched a payments collection app for offline merchants and retailers called Eazypay which will allow customers to pay via UPI, cards, net banking and the bank’s Pockets wallet app. 
ii.Note that this is an app only for ICICI Bank customers who have a current account with the bank and will not allow other bank account holders to register on the app.

Kisan Diwas is observed every year on 23 December across India 

i. Kisan Diwas is observed every year on 23 December across India Since 2001 to celebrate the birth anniversary of the fifth prime minister and kisan leader,Ch. Charan Singh.
ii. Kisan Diwan is also known as Farmers Day or Charan Singh Jayanti 


Nepal to hold military exercise with China

i.Nepal has announced to hold its first ever joint military exercise with China on February 10, 2017 to begin a new level of bilateral military engagement with China.
ii.The focus of the military exercise, named Pratikar-1, will be on training Nepali forces in dealing 
with hostage scenarios involving international terror groups.

Govt okays Rs 7,000-cr defence projects

i.The Defence Acquisition Council okayed defence requirements worth approximately Rs 7,000 crore. 
ii.These include purchasing six modern surveillance aircraft for the Indian Coast Guard. 
iii.The DAC also gave its go-ahead to purchase one more C-17 Globemaster Mk-III aircraft from the US.

Nusli Wadia voted out of Tata Chemicals

i.Shareholders of Tata Chemicals have voted out Nusli Wadia as an independent director of the company with 75.67 % votes going in favour of a resolution moved by Tata Sons to remove him. 
ii.According to a regulatory filing by Tata Chemicals, out of the total of 25.48 crore shares of the company, 14.91 crore shares were voted.
iii. Out of this, 11.28 crore were in favour of the resolution to remove him.

France is the first to use drones for its national mail service

France’s airspace regulator, General Directorate for Civil Aviation, has approved the plan to launch drone delivery program, making France the world’s first national postal service to use drones regularly.


APIS India ropes in badminton sensation PV Sindhu as its brand ambassador 

APIS India a leading producer, distributor and exporter of honey under APIS Himalaya brand, has roped in Indian badminton champion and Rio Olympics silver medalist PV Sindhu as its brand ambassador. 


India beat Sri Lanka in final, clinch Asia Cup under-19 title

i.India, coached by Rahul Dravid, continued their dominance in the Asia Cup as they clinched the U-19 title by defeating Sri Lanka in the final at the R Premadasa stadium in Colombo.
ii. This was India’s second win in the Asia Cup U-19 tournament, having won the title in 2013/14 by defeating Pakistan by 40 runs and sharing the trophy in the first edition held in Malaysia in 2012/13.

 

Shiva Keshavan grabs gold at Asian Luge Championship

i.India’s Seasoned Winter Olympian Shiva Keshavan clinched a gold medal at the Asian Luge Championship on 23rd December. 
ii.Keshavan finished the 2 heat race with a time of 1 minute, 39.962 seconds and top speed of 130.4 km/h. 
iii.Japan's Tanaka Shohei won silver while Chinese Taipei's Lien Te-An claimed bronze. 
iv.Earlier this year, Shiva was forced to withdraw from the 2016 World Championships due to lack of funds.

Pakistan's first Sikh cricketer Mohinder Pal Singh to join national cricket academy

i.Pakistan cricket has seen Christians and Hindus represent the country at home and abroad, but for the first time a Sikh has secured a place in the National Cricket Academy.
ii.Mohinder Pal Singh, who hails from Nankana Sahib (Lahore), is among the list of top 30 emerging cricketers in the country.