Daily GK Update 4th July 2017, Important Current Affairs

1. President Pranab Mukherjee has appointed election commissioner Achal Kumar Joti as the next Chief Election Commissioner (CEC). He will be the 21st CEC and shall succeed Nasim Zaidi.

Daily GK Update 4th July 2017, Important Current Affairs

2. Incumbent Vice President Hamid Ansari’s term comes to an end on August 10, 2017. Election Commission of India (EC) has issued a notification, the process of filing nominations for the vice presidential election.

3. The foundation stone of the country’s biggest Global Skill Park was laid in Bhopal jointly by Union Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajeev Pratap Rudi and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

4. President Pranab Mukherjee has approved the promulgation of The Prevention of cruelty to Animals (Karnataka Amendment) Ordinance, 2017 by the Governor of Karnataka in pursuance of Article 213 of Constitution. The promulgated ordinance legalises Kambala, bullock cart races and bull runs as traditional sports involving animals and exempt them from The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960.

5. The Union Government and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have signed a $220 million loan agreement for improving connectivity as well as transport efficiency and safety on State Highways of Rajasthan. The loan will be provided as the first tranche of the $500 million Rajasthan State Highways Investment Program, approved by ADB Board in May 2017. The Program will upgrade about 2,000 kilometers of state highways and major district roads to two-lane or intermediate-lane standards to meet road safety requirements.

6. As per analysis of the latest figures compiled by the Zurich based SNB (Swiss National Bank) as on 2016-end, India has slipped to the 88th place in terms of money parked by its citizens with Swiss banks. The analysis shows that the money officially held by Indians with banks in Switzerland now accounts for a meagre 0.04% of the total funds kept by all foreign clients in the Swiss banking system.

7. The present standoff between Indian and Chinese troops in Doklam (located at the tri-junction of India, China and Bhutan) has highlighted India’s very special relationship with Bhutan, including military responsibilities.

8. Data obtained from latest study conducted using remote sensing and GIS for the first time has offered definite proof that the mangrove forest cover in Indian Sunderbans has been depleting alarmingly. From 1986 to 2012, 124.418 sq km or about 5.5% of the mangrove cover of Sunderbans was lost. Moreover, variable degrees of erosion were also observed in at least 18 islands. The continuation of this process is a serious ecological threat.

9. National Multi Commodity Exchange (NMCE), India’s first demutualised online national multi-commodities exchange will merge with Indian Commodity Exchange (ICEX). The merged entity will create India’s third biggest commodity exchange. The largest commodity exchange by volume is the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) followed by National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange (NCDEX).

10. India successfully test-fired its indigenously developed quick reaction surface-to-air short range missile (QR-SAM). The sophisticated missile was test fired from a truck-mounted canister launcher from launch complex-3 at the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur. It was the second successful developmental trial of the state-of-the-art missile with an aerial target. The first test launch of the missile was conducted in June 2017 from the same base.

11. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the end of the most recent outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The announcement comes 42 days (two 21-day incubation cycles of the virus) after the last confirmed Ebola patient in the affected Bas-Uélé province of DRC tested negative for the disease for the second time.

12. The Centre and Asian Development Bank (ADB) has signed a 220 million dollar loan for improving connectivity as well as transport efficiency and safety on State Highways of Rajasthan. 

13. The indigenously developed Quick Reaction Surface-to-Air (QRSAM) short-range missile, which has a capability of engaging multiple targets was successfully test-fired from a test range along the Odisha coast. 

14. Aadhaar architect Nandan Nilekani and Helion Venture’s Sanjeev Aggarwal have launched an investment fund called Fundamentum with a corpus of $100 million to back startups looking for growth capital. 

15. The Financial StabilityBoard (FSB), an international body for the global financial system, has placed India in the league of countries that are 'compliant or largely compliant’ on the implementation of priority area reforms. Ahead of the G20 Summit in Germany to be attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, among other world leaders, the FSB has submitted its status report on progress in financial regulatory reforms in various jurisdictions, including India.

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