Daily GK Potion – 1st, 2nd and 3rd June 2015

Gromo Referal
  1. Dilwar Singh wins ‘Pedal for Kashmir’ cycling race
    • Dilawar Singh of Haryana pipped local hero Mohammad Akbar Khan to win ‘Pedal for Kashmir’ cycling competition held along the banks of picturesque Dal Lake.
    • In the under-19 category for Boys, Mohit Kumar won the first prize followed by Wahid Ahmad Ganie and Amir Sadiq Gojri in second and third place respectively.
    • In the girls under-19 category, Komal Deshmuk from Maharashtra, beat local girl Bushra Ali to the first position.
  2. Deepika Kumari wins bronze in Archery World Cup
    • Ace Indian archer Deepika Kumari outclassed Chang Hye Jin of Korea in straight sets to clinch the bronze medal in the women’s individual recurve event of the World Cup.
    • Seeded ninth in the event, Deepika came out all guns blazing to deflate her second-seeded opponent 6 (26, 29, 26, 28)- 2 (25, 26, 28, 27) to come up with a clean performance.
    • The in-form Deepika kept the tri-colour flying high after veteran archer Dola Banerjee, Satbir Kaur and Snehal Divakar all lost in the first round of the individual recurve.
  3. In a first, China unveils facial-recognition ATM
    • Chinese researchers have successfully developed the first automated teller machine (ATM) with facial recognition technology to reduce the risk of theft.
    • The developers include Tsinghua University and Tzekwan Technology, a Hangzhou firm in eastern China’s Zhejiang province that provides security protection for financial transactions.
    • The product has already passed certification and would soon be available for sale.
  4. J. P. Rajkhowa sworn in as Arunachal Pradesh Governor
    • Former IAS officer Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa was sworn in as the Governor of Arunachal Pradesh.
    • Appointed on May 12, the 1968-batch officer has served as the chief secretary of Assam before his superannuation from service.
    • Rajkhowa will take over from his duties from Lt. Gen Nirbhay Sharma, who has been shifted to Mizoram.
  5. Hike in Service Tax to 14 percent became operational
    • The decision of the Parliament to increase the rate of service tax from 12.36 to 14 percent became operational on 1 June 2015.
    • The new rate subsumes the education cess (2 percent on the service tax amount) which was earlier levied separately.
    • The decision to increase the rate was taken to facilitate smooth transition to the Goods Service Tax (GST) regime which is proposed to be implemented from 1 April 2016. Once implemented, GST will subsume service tax, excise and other indirect taxes.
    • Service tax is an indirect tax levied by the government on service providers on all service transactions such as education, insurance, transportation, communication, hospitality, etc.
  6. George Yeo new Nalanda University chancellor
    • Former Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo will be the new Chancellor of the Nalanda University, the Ministry of External Affairs announced on Saturday.
    • Mr. Yeo, who is on the governing board of prestigious university, will take over from Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, who withdrew his candidature for a second term as Chancellor of the Nalanda University in Bihar in February 2015.
    • Mr. Yeo was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 2012 in recognition of his contribution in the field of “public affairs.”
  7. Edward Snowden awarded Freedom of Expression prize in Norway
    • Former security contractor Edward Snowden won a Norwegian prize for freedom of expression.
    • The Norwegian Academy of Literature and Freedom of Expression said the 31-year old fugitive had won the Bjornson Prize — named after a Norwegian Nobel literature laureate — “for his work protecting privacy and for shining a critical light on US surveillance of its citizens and others.”
    • Snowden, a former analyst at the US National Security Agency, has lived in exile in Russia since 2013 after revealing mass spying programmes by the United States and its allies.
  8. Government Launches Khoya Paya Website to Track Missing Children
    • A web portal to be used as social medium for people to share information about missing children was launched.
    • Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi and Information and Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad jointly launched the website ‘Khoya-Paya’, a platform for citizens to report children sighted as abandoned or lost.
    • “There are approximately 70,000 children who are reported missing every year. We felt there was a need of a portal for everyone where details can be put up on khoya paya and then can contact the police,” said Maneka Gandhi.
    • Jharkhand tops the list of states which see cases of missing children and those of child trafficking.
  9. Sepp Blatter to resign as Fifa president amid corruption scandal
    • Sepp Blatter is to resign as president of world football’s governing body Fifa as reports emerge he is under investigation in the United States.
    • He was re-elected last week, despite seven top Fifa officials being arrested in a massive corruption probe.
  10. Growth push: RBI cuts policy rate by 25 bps
    • RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan delivered the first policy rate cut of the current financial year on Tuesday, paring the interest rate at which banks borrow from the central bank (repo rate) to 7.25 per cent from 7.50 per cent.
    • With this move, loans to housing, auto, small and medium enterprises and large corporates are expected to get a tad cheaper.
    • In its second bi-monthly policy statement, the RBI revised the inflation projection upwards to 6 per cent by January 2016 from 5.8 per cent in April 2015.
    • Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian said the RBI’s move was consistent with the trends in the economy, including declining inflation and strong fiscal discipline.
    • Taking the RBI Governor’s cue, India’s largest bank, State Bank of India, pared its base rate (minimum lending rate) to 9.70 per cent from 9.85 per cent.
  11. Ravi Shastri to continue as Indian team director for Bangladesh tour
    • Former captain Ravi Shastri was on Tuesday retained as director of the Indian cricket team for the tour of Bangladesh starting June 10 as the BCCI continued its search for a new permanent coach to succeed Duncan Fletcher.
    • Shastri, who served as team director during the tour of Australia and the subsequent World Cup earlier this year, is a stop-gap arrangement for the short trip.
    • Shastri represented India in 80 Tests and 150 ODIs for India and was part of the side, which lifted the 1983 World Cup.
  12. Mauritius Designates Ameenah Gurib-Fakim as First Woman President
    • The government of Mauritius has designated Ameenah Gurib-Fakim as the Indian Ocean Island nation’s new president, making her the first woman to hold the ceremonial position.
    • The appointment of Gurib-Fakim, an internationally-renowned scientist and biologist, is subject to parliament approval, due to take place on Thursday.
    • Gurib-Fakim, 56, will be the first female President of the Island, which gained independence from Britain in 1968 and which replaced Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state in 1992.
  13. Atal Bihari Vajpayee to be conferred ‘Friends of Bangladesh Liberation War Award’
    • Bangladesh is set to honour former premier Atal Bihari Vajpayee for his outstanding support for the country’s independence from Pakistan in 1971 when he was a Lok Sabha member.
    • The then Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was the first “foreign friend” to be conferred with the ‘Bangladesh Liberation War Honour Award’.
    • Bangladesh will hand over Vajpayee’s “Friends of Bangladesh Liberation War Award” to Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his upcoming visit to the country from June 6.
    • Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina also approved a proposal to honour the families of the members of Indian armed forces for sacrificing their lives for the cause of Bangladesh’s independence.
  14. Sachin, Sourav, Laxman in BCCI cricket advisory committee
    • The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has formed a Cricket Advisory Committee comprising Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman.
    • It is, however, learnt that the new committee will take every major decision related to the Indian cricket team. To start with, it will nominate the new coach.
    • The committee will also oversee the Indian team’s preparation before every major series and will call for a report from the team management at the end of it. It will set the roadmap and guidelines for the future tours.
  15. Meena Hemchandra appointed as executive director of RBI
    • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has appointed Meena Hemchandra as the executive director who would be in charge of department of banking supervision.
    • She will also be in charge of department of non-banking supervision and department of co-operative banking supervision.
    • RBI’s executive director Chandan Sinha, who was incharge of these departments will now be in charge of department of information technology, department of payment and settlement system, foreign exchange department and financial markets regulations departments- including market intelligence.
    • Prior to this appointment, Meena Hemchandra was in charge of department of supervision. She has also been Principal of Reserve Bank’s College of Agriculture Banking at Pune.

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