Daily GK Update 28th January 2017, Important Current Affairs

1. GAAR will be effective April 1, 2017, onwards: CBDT
i.The Union Finance Ministry has announced that the General Anti Avoidance Rule (GAAR) will be effective from the 1 April, 2017. In this regard Income Tax (IT) department has issued a slew of clarifications on implementation of GAAR, seeking to address concerns of foreign investors over implementation of the anti-evasion measure.
ii. GAAR seeks to prevent companies from routing transactions through other countries to avoid taxes. The rules are framed mainly to minimize and check avoidance of tax. India will be the 17th nation in the world to have laws that aim to close tax loopholes.  At present, GAAR is in force in nations like Australia, Singapore, China and the UK.

Daily GK Update 28th January 2017
2, India ranked 79th in the Corruption Perception Index 2016
i.India has been ranked at 79th spot out of 176 countries in the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) for the year 2016 released  by the Berlin-based corruption watchdog Transparency International (TI).
ii.New Zealand and Denmark jointly shared the first position as the least corrupt nations while Somalia was rated as the most corrupt country in the list.

3. PSU oil companies, Andhra Pradesh govt ink pacts
i.The public sector oil companies such as the HPCL, ONGC and the GAIL have signed MoUs for investing 1.65 lakh crore in Andhra Pradesh on several projects, many of them in the Krishna-Godavari basin, according to Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan.
ii.A partnership summit organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry and the Andhra Pradesh government.

4. Telangana signs MoU for aero skill academy
i.The Telangana government has signed a memorandum of agreement with French firm Aerocampus Aquitaine, known for aircraft maintenance skill training, to create a world-class aero skill academy.
ii.The project deliverables include identifying skill gaps, designing courses and enabling European Aviation Safety Agency and Directorate General of Civil Aviation certifications for the academy and its courses.

5. Andhra Pradesh Launches Rs 100 cr fund of funds for Fintech Startups
i.The Andhra Pradesh under Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu has announced Rs 100-crore fund of funds on January 25, 2017 to invest in Fintech startups.
ii.Fintech is being seen as a promising space to generate job, thus the state has initiated an industry-academia-government partnership to tap and refine skilled talent available at cheaper costs to develop Visakhapatnam into a global fintech hub.

6. 119 banks connected with Aadhaar-enabled payment system: Minister
i.The government stated that 119 banks are connected with the Aadhaar-enabled payment system and 33.87 crore transactions have taken place through Aadhaar-enabled payment systems.There are 111 crore Aadhaar enrolments done so far out of the total population of 125 crore in India.
 ii.Aadhaar is becoming a powerful instrument to bridge the digital divide,Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister of Information Technology stated.He said ₹36,000 crore has been saved in the last two years due to the linking of Aadhaar with the public distribution system including household LPG supply and MGNREGA.

7.SBI Launches Wealth Management Product SBI Exclusif in Kochi
i.The State Bank of India has launched a new wealth management product named 'SBI Exclusif' in Kochi, Kerala. Later it will be rolled out in other cities of the state during the course of the year.
ii.The product was launched by Chief General Manager, SBI, Kerala Circle, S Venkataraman.SBI Exclusif is targeted at fast growing affluent and high net worth customer segments of the bank.

8. ISRO successfully ground-tests Cryogenic Upper Stage engine meant for rocket GSLV-Mark-III
i.Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has successfully ground tested the Cryogenic Upper Stage engine meant for the rocket GSLV-Mark-III. 
ii.In a release, the space agency stated the indegenously developed engine, designated as C25, tested for a duration of 50 seconds in its Propulsion Complex at Mahendragiri in southern Tamil Nadu, demonstrating all the stage operations.

9. G.N. Rao to be inducted into Ophthalmology Hall of Fame
i.Gullapalli N. Rao, a noted Indian eye doctor, has been selected to the 2017 Ophthalmology Hall of Fame instituted by the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery.The founder and chair of the LV Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad, Rao will be honoured at the induction ceremony in Los Angeles on May 6,2017 at the annual meeting of the ASCRS.
ii.The Hall of Fame honours pioneers in ophthalmology for their distinguished careers and contributions, with the physicians selected by their peers – more than 30,000 ophthalmologists across the world. 

10. Students’ start-up launches food pre-ordering app
i.Fed up with waiting endlessly after ordering food in a canteen Some students of National Institute of Technology Karnataka (NITK) at Surathkal in Mangaluru taluk have found a solution for it with an app to pre-order food in canteens within their campus.
ii.Their start-up, WayFoo.com, offers a mobile app that helps students to pre-order food in three of the canteens on the NITK campus, saving them time.Gautamdev Chowdary, CEO and co-founder of WayFoo.com stated that users can order food from classrooms or hostel rooms. By the time they reach the canteen, the food will be ready.

11. Indian Hotels appoints Chandrasekaran non-executive Additional Director
i.Tata group hospitality firm Indian Hotels Co today announced the appointment of Tata Sons Chairman-designate N Chandrasekaran as non-executive Additional Director.
ii.TCS chief Chandrasekaran was named the new Chairman of Tata Sons, capping two months of a most bitter boardroom battle that followed the unceremonious sacking of Cyrus Mistry and a lot of blood letting ever since.

12. Indian Navy’s Theatre Level Exercise, TROPEX 17 Begins
i.The Theatre Readiness Operational Exercise (TROPEX), an annual Indian Navy  exercise kicked started off the Western Seaboard. 
ii.The last edition of the exercise was conducted in January 2015.TROPEX 17 exercise is aimed at testing combat readiness of the combined fleets of the Indian Navy, and the assets of the Indian Air Force, Indian Army and the Indian Coast Guard.

13. Surya Namaskar Yajna Recognised in US Congress
i.The annual “Surya Namaskar Yajna” or “Health for Humanity Yogathon” has been recognized in the US House of Representative on the occasion of its 10th anniversary.
ii.Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh has organized the “Yoga for Health, Health for Humanity Yogathon” from January 14 to January 29, 2017 to mark Makar Sankranti.The 16-day event will raise awareness about yoga and its advantages in achieving a healthy body, mind, and spirit.

14. Sri Venkateswara College wins Great Britain debate in Delhi
i.The Delhi edition of the Great Britain Debate organised by the British High Commission and hosted by the Lady Sri Ram College was won by Anmol Sharma and Sidaq Batra of Sri Venkateswara College.
 ii.The runners up were Pratyaksha Jha and Aritro Bose of Ashoka University.

15. President appoints Banwarilal Purohit as Governor of Meghalaya
i.President Pranab Mukherjee has given Governor of Assam Banwarilal Purohit additional charge of Meghalaya.  Besides, President also gave Governor of Nagaland PB Acharya additional charge of Arunachal Pradesh.
ii.These appointments come after President accepted the resignation of V. Shanmuganathan, as Governor of Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh.

16. Dr Vijay Bhatkar appointed new vice-chancellor of Nalanda University
i.President Pranab Mukherjee has appointed Dr Vijay Bhatkar, architect of India’s first supercomputer the Param series, as the chancellor of Nalanda University.
ii.He will have term of three years from the date of his appointment as provided under Section 11(3) of the Nalanda University Act. He shall succeed George Yeo, former Foreign Minister of Singapore, who resigned after the Board of the University was reconstituted.

17. Scientists creates world’s first stable semi-synthetic organism
i.Researchers from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), US have created world’s first stable semi-synthetic organism, a single-celled bacterium with an expanded genetic code ii.The semi-synthetic organism is the modified E.coli bacteria created by introducing DNA molecules that are not found in nature in a common bacterium.


18. DragonBall Z Fans Can Rejoice As Tokyo 2020 Unveils Son Goku As Olympics Ambassador
i.In order to woo the young audiences at the 2020 Olympics, the organisers of the Tokyo Games have unveiled Japan's cult anime character Son Goku as its ambassador.
ii.The Japanese character will feature on all the official Olympics 2020 merchandise. Apart from the Dragonball Z character, other cartoon stars that will be massively visible throughout the sporting extravaganza will be Mario, 
Naruto and Sailor Moon. 

19. Sports Ministry reconstitutes committee to identify athletes under TOP Scheme
i.The Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has reconstituted TOP committee with objective of identifying and supporting potential medal prospects for 2020 and 2024 Olympic Games under Target Olympic Podium (TOP) scheme.
ii.The committee will be headed by Abhinav Bindra, Olympic Gold Medalist.