Daily Current Affairs - 13th Aug 2017

Environment Minister launches ‘Gaj Yatra’ to mark World Elephant Day 2017

  • Union Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, launched ‘Gaj Yatra’ , a nationwide campaign to protect elephants on the occasion of World Elephant Day.
  • The campaign is planned to cover 12 elephant range states.

Facebook tests the waters in China with stealth app

  • Facebook approved the May debut of a photo-sharing app, called Colourful Balloons, in China.
  • Facebook and many of its apps have been blocked in China for years.Now the social network is trying a different way into China: by authorising the release of a new app there that does not carry the Facebook name.
  • The app shares the look, function and feel of Facebook’s Moments app. It was released through a separate local company called Youge Internet Technology.

Federer cruises into the semifinals of the Montreal Masters.

  • Swiss star Roger Federer outclassed Roberto Bautista-Agut as he inched closer to his sixth title of the season with a win in the quarterfinals of the Montreal Masters.

Global investor Advent set to buy ‘significant stakes’ in Dixcy

  • Advent International, a leading global private equity investor, has in-principle agree to acquire significant stakes in Dixcy Textiles Private Limited ,a leading inner wear brand.
  • The Advent International has been making investments in India for almost a decade and invested in industrial majors like Crompton Greaves Consumer Electricals in the recent times.

Gurdeep Sappal resigns as Rajya Sabha TV CEO

  • Gurdeep Singh Sappal has resigned as Rajya Sabha TV CEO and Prasar Bharati CEO Shashi Shekhar Vempati has been given the additional charge of the post.
  • In 2008, the Rajya Sabha decided to start its own 24x7 TV channel. Three years later, the decision was taken to hand over the reins of the channel to Mr. Sappal, who was appointed as its CEO.
  • The limited broadcast of the channel was started in August 2011 and it went 24x7 on January 26, 2012.

IIT Guwahati develops silk patch to repair damaged heart tissue

  • Scientists at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati have fabricated a 3D cardiac tissue patch using silk protein membranes seeded with heart muscle cells.
  • The patch can potentially be used for regenerating damaged heart tissue.
  • The silk in the patch supports the cells till the newly formed cardiac tissue integrates with the native heart tissue and degrades once the integration takes place.This method is better than the conventional direct delivery of cardiac cells to repair the damaged portion of the heart as the cells get washed out from the injected site.

Israel is getting a new wall

  • The Israel army accelerating construction of a subterranean barrier around the Gaza Strip, designed to cut off tunnels running beneath the border into Israel like the ones Hamas militants used to ambush Israeli military posts during the summer-long war of 2014.
  • USA President Donald Trump invoked Israel’s “wall” as a model for the barrier he has vowed to build along the U.S.’s border with Mexico.
  • Israel prime minister---Benjamin Netanyahu.

Ministry of Culture organizes Sankalp Se Siddhi Programme in Coimbatore

  • To take forward the initiative of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for a New India movement from 2017 - 2022, a Sankalp Se Siddhi (Attainment through Resolve) Programme was organized at Coimbatore .
  • Minister of State for Culture and Tourism (Independent Charge), Dr. Mahesh Sharma graced the occasion.
  • The New India Movement 2017-2022 envisages an India free of Poverty, Corruption, Terrorism, Communalism, Casteism and Un-cleanliness.

Pepe Jeans in venture with Dollar Industries

  • Dollar Industries Limited announced an equal joint venture with Pepe Jeans Europe BV. The venture will manufacture and market premium clothes.
  • This venture would also bring in foreign direct investment for the textile sector in India.

Pink and Dangal win at the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM)

  • Filmmaker Karan Johar, actors Sushant Singh Rajput, Konkona Sen Sharma and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan emerged as winners at the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) award ceremony.
  • The best film gong went to Amitabh Bachchan-starrer Pink.
  • Nitesh Tiwari won the best director award for Dangal and also shared the people’s choice award with Baahubali 2: The Conclusion.
  • Sushant Singh Rajput was named best actor for his role in MS Dhoni: The Untold Story.
  • The best actress honour went to Lipstick Under My Burkha-star Konkona Sen Sharma.
  • The award for excellence in global cinema was given to Aishwarya Rai.
  • Rahul Bose-directed film Poorna won the equality in cinema award.
  • Lion director Garth Davis won the diversity award this year and the festival’s opening night film Lipstick Under My Burkha won the best indie film award.

Sharad Yadav removed as JD(U) party leader in Rajya Sabha

  • The Janata Dal (United) on Saturday removed Sharad Yadav as the party's leader in Rajya Sabha.
  • JD(U) in Rajya Sabha will now be lead by R C P Singh, A 1984-batch IAS officer

Small firms can hedge gold with MCX options

  • India’s Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) will launch the country’s first gold options contract in September allowing even smaller players in the bullion industry an instrument to hedge their risk.
  • The Securities and Exchange Board of India has approved the options contract,For years the market has been waiting for options. This will give many small jewellers an opportunity to hedge their risk without worrying about daily volatility.

Uhuru Kenyatta declared winner in Kenya's President elections.

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner on Friday of Kenya’s hard-fought presidential election, but Opposition candidate Raila Odinga alleged the voting was rigged.
  • The election commission said Mr. Kenyatta won a second term with 54 percent in balloting.
  • Mr. Kenyatta,is the 55-year-old son of Kenya’s first President after independence from Britain.

Uttar Pradesh to be Fully Open Defecation Free by 2018

  • All 4480 villages on the bank of River Ganga in 52 districts and 5 states (Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand & West Bengal) were declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) under Namami Gange initiative at the Ganga Gram Sammelan held Naini, Allahabad by Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, Union Minister for Rural Development, Panchayati Raj and Drinking Water and Sanitation.

Vice premier of China to visit Pak to mark I-Day

  • Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Yang arrived in Pakistan to take part in the country's Independence Day celebrations on August 14.
  • Wang will be accompanied by a high-level delegation for the two-day visit, which comes on the "directions of President Xi Jinping as a special gesture.
  • The visit to Pakistan and Nepal by the top Chinese official comes as India and China have been locked in a military standoff for nearly two months at the strategic Doklam plateau in Bhutan.