Current Affairs Daily Updates: June 3rd 2016

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1. P Dhanapal re-elected as Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly Speaker.
• Ruling AIADMK P Dhanapal was unanimously re-elected as Speaker of the 15th Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly.
• With this, he becomes first speaker to be elected for a consecutive second term in the state’s legislative history.

2. P Sreeramakrishnan elected as Speaker of Kerala Legislative Assembly.
• Ruling Left Democratic Front’s (LDF) candidate P Sreeramakrishnan was elected as speaker of the 14th legislative assembly of Kerala.
• In the voting held in the 140-member legislative assembly, P Sreeramakrishnan secured 92 votes against opposition United Democratic Front’s (UDF) V.P. Sajeendran who got 46 votes.


1. India Post releases 'My Stamp' with Amazon India.
• India Post released a My Stamp with Amazon India, to commemorate three years of its tie-up with the website and celebrate the e-commerce marketplace’s third anniversary in the country.
• Usha Chandrashekar, Chief Post Master General, Bengaluru, handed over the Amazon India My Stamp to Amit Agarwal, Vice-President and Country Manager, Amazon India.


1. BSE gets RBI nod to start online bidding platform for SGBs
• BSE, Asia’s oldest bourse, has received the Reserve Bank approval to start an online bidding platform for Sovereign Gold Bond scheme.
• SGBs government securities denominated in grams of gold offer an alternative to holding gold in physical form.


1. Actor-director Balu Anand dies of heart attack
• Famous Tamil actor and director Balu Anand passed away in Coimbataore.
• Anand (62), who has acted in some 100 films and directed a few Tamil movies.


1. Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approves Mau-Tarighat Railway line project
• The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on gave its approval for a new 51 km broad gauge line from Mau to Tarighat, aiming to provide an alternative and convenient route between New Delhi and Howrah.
• The CCEA chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi cleared the rail project to be underatken at an estimated cost of Rs 1,765.92 crore. With 5% escalation per year, the project may finally cost Rs 2,109.07 crore.

2. Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Government of India Sign $200 Million Loan Agreement to Help Upgrade 176 Km of State Roads in State of Jharkhand
• The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India signed in the national capital an agreement for $200 million new loan to upgrade 176 Kilometers of State roads in State of Jharkhand.
• The financing for the Jharkhand State roads II Project will upgrade existing sections of four State roads to two lane standard and will also support improvements in the design, safety and maintenance of the network.

3. SEBI begins auction process of Sahara lands
• The Securities and Exchange Board of India began the process of selling properties owned by the Sahara Group, in accordance with a Supreme Court ruling. Ten properties owned by the company have been identified to be sold for a combined reserve price of Rs. 1,193 crore.
• SBI has engaged HDFC Realty and SBI Capital Markets to auction the properties. While HDFC Realty will sell five land parcels, SBI Caps will undertake the sale. The combined area of the land parcels is estimated to be over 1,100 acres.

4. Beauty and wellness service provider Zapluk acquires Pamperazi
• Hyderabad-based Zapluk, which provides on-demand beauty and wellness service, has bought Chennai-based Pamperazi, which offers on-demand home beauty services, in an equity and cash deal.
• Zap force Technologies Pvt Ltd, which owns the merged business, is in discussions to raise funds. It will use the money to start its services in the National Capital Region, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Kolkata.

5. Mahindra rolls out eVerito at Rs. 9.50 lakh
• Mahindra Electric, a part of the Mahindra Group launched eVerito the electric version of its Verito sedan priced between Rs. 9.50 lakh and Rs. 10 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).
• The eVerito will be available in key cities, such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, Kolkata, Chandigarh, Hyderabad, Jaipur and Nagpur.


1. Turkey, Kenya set target to increase trade volume to $1 billion
• Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta held a joint press conference in Nairobi, the second stop on Turkey's two-nation East African tour.
• Turkey and Kenya aim to raise the volume of trade from the outstanding $144 million to $1 billion a year.

2. PM’s visit to Afghanistan, Qatar, Switzerland, USA and Mexico
• The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi will be visiting Afghanistan, State of Qatar, Switzerland, United States of America and Mexico from June 4-8.
• PM will join President Ashraf Ghani to inaugurate Afghanistan-India Friendship Dam in Herat.

3. Northern Ireland to lift ban on gay men donating blood
• Northern Ireland’s ban on gay men donating blood is to be lifted.
• The one-year deferral system operated in the rest of the UK will now become law in Northern Ireland. This means gay and bisexual men will be permitted to give blood one year after their last sexual contact with another man.


1. India to grant tourist, e-visa for Yoga courses
• In a first, India will give tourist visa and e-tourist visa to foreigners willing to undergo short term course on Yoga in its bid to popularize the ancient spiritual and ascetic practice globally.
• Besides, the government has decided to include attending a short term yoga programme and short duration medical treatment under Indian systems of medicine in the list of permissible activities under e-tourist visa.

2. 100 iconic places to be cleaned up under Swachh Bharat Mission
• Under the Swachh Bharat Mission, it has been decided to undertake a special clean-up initiative focused on 100 iconic heritages, spiritual and cultural places in the country.
• The aim of this initiative is to make these 100 places model ‘Swachh Tourist Destinations’, that will enhance the experience for visitors from India and abroad.

3. India and USA can transform the world with trade and trust: Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh
• India and USA are natural allies and could transform the world with trade and trust and inaugural session of the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce’s (IACC) National Conclave-2016 in Hyderabad.
• Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and the US President Mr. Barack Obama have added a new and successful chapter in Indo-US bilateral relations.

4. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) Signed Between Ministry of Railways and Govt. of Haryana for setting up of JV Company
• Union Minister of Railways, Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu and Chief Minister of Haryana Shri Manohar Lal Khattar a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for “Formation of Joint Venture Company for Development of Railway Infrastructure in the State” was signed.
• In view of the growing demands for railway lines in various states and huge requirement of funds to execute them, Hon’ble Minister for Railways announced in his budget speech regarding setting up of Joint Ventures with states for focused project development, resource mobilization, land acquisition, project implementation and monitoring of critical rail projects.


1. Nita Ambani nominated for International Olympic Committee
• Nita Ambani, Founder and Chairperson of Reliance Foundation have been nominated as a candidate to be a new member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
• She is the first Indian woman to be nominated to the IOC and is being considered in the category of volunteers who represent the IOC and Olympic Movement in their country.


1. Amritsar to get new Partition Museum
• A permanent museum dedicated to India’s Partition in 1947 will be established at the historic Town Hall in Amritsar.
• The Partition Museum will be a space of commemoration and documentation of the largest migration in history.


1. Hubble finds universe may be expanding faster than expected
• Astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have discovered that the universe is expanding 5 % to 9 % faster than expected.
• Discovery in this regard was made by an international team of researchers of the Space Telescope Science Institute and the Johns Hopkins University.


1. US Secretary of State John Kerry to host Ocean Conference in September
• U.S. Secretary of State John F. Kerry will host the third Our Ocean conference September 15-16 in Washington, DC.
• Our Ocean 2016 will bring together heads of state, scientists, business leaders, NGOs, and others to tackle key issues including marine protected areas, sustainable fisheries, marine pollution, and climate-related impacts on the ocean.

2. India and Tunisia sign MoUs for co-operation in IT, handicrafts sector
• India and Tunisia signed two MoUs on promotion of handicrafts and IT and communication and digital economy as Vice President Hamid Ansari met Tunisian Prime Minister Habib Essid and discussed a range of issues of mutual and regional interests.
• India will train 350 Tunisian students in next five years.
• The two sides will promote each other's traditional handicraft and increase mutual cooperation in the IT and related sectors, including digital economy.


1. Argentina retain top spot in FIFA rankings
• India has dropped a place in the latest FIFA rankings with the Blue Tigers ranked 163 in the FIFA rankings.
• Argentina (1st) and Belgium (2nd) continue to hold on to the top two spots in the latest FIFA rankings, with Colombia rounding up the top three.
2. Five new sports in running for 2020 Tokyo Olympics
• Five new sports baseball, skateboarding, surfing, sports climbing and karate are set to feature at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
• Under new rules, Olympic host cities can hand-pick sports they want in the Games to join the existing 28 core sports.


1. Allocation of Domestic Natural Gas to APGDC for CGD operations in East Godavari & West Godavari districts of Andhra Pradesh
• The Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas (MoPNG) has approved the allocation of 3,000 SCMD domestic natural gas to Andhra Pradesh Gas Distribution Corporation Limited (APGDC) for East Godavari and West Godavari Geographical Areas. This decision would enable APGDC to start regular CNG sale from its recently commissioned CNG station in Kovvur.
• The allocation of domestic gas for CGD activities has been a long-standing demand put forth by the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh and APGDC.


1. Sweden voted best country in the world, India ranks 70th: Report
• According to the 'Good Country' 2015 index, Sweden is the best country in the world when it comes to serving the interests of its people and contributing to the common good of humanity while India figured low at 70th position.
• According to the ‘Good Country’ 2015 index which seeks to measure how countries contribute to the global good, Sweden, relative to the size of its economy, does more “good” and less harm than any other country.