Daily Current Affairs – 17 January 2015 – Saturday

1. Ashok Srinivasan winner of  The Hindu Prize for 2014

i. Ashok
Srinivasan won the The Hindu Prize 2014 for his Book
of Common Signs, his debut novel.

ii. The award was
presented by Justice Leila Seth on Saturday at The Hindu Lit for Life 2015.

iii. Ashok Srinivasan began writing at the age of
14, and after courting obscurity for decades, finally decided to publish his
collection of short stories Book of Common Signs.

2. Piramal buys
Coldstream Labs for Rs. 180 cr

i. Piramal Enterprises Ltd has acquired Coldstream
Laboratories Inc a specialty pharmaceutical contract manufacturer in $30.65
million (about Rs. 180
crore) deal.

Note: i.
Piramal Enterprises Limited, formerly known as Piramal Healthcare Limited, is
the flagship company of Piramal Group. The company has the following business
units: Piramal Healthcare, Piramal Life Sciences, Piramal Capital &
Decision Resources Group.

iii. Coldstream is a contract development and
manufacturing organisation focused on the development and manufacturing of
sterile injectable products.

iv. Founded in 2007, it is majority owned by
University of Kentucky Research Foundation (an affiliate of the University of
Kentucky), the note said.

3. R K Tyagi
conferred with JGBS-Top Rankers’ Excellence Award

i. Hindustan
Aeronautics Limited (HAL) Chairman R.K. Tyagi conferred with the JGBS-Top
Rankers’ Excellence Award for CEO of the year 2014.

ii. He played a key role in 2014 being a successful year
for HAL through series of initiatives. The year was dedicated for Integrity, Customer
Focus and Quality (ICQ).

4. Govt
launches Venture Capital Fund for Scheduled Castes

i. Government has launched the Venture Capital
Fund and Green Business scheme for Scheduled Castes.

About the
Scheme –

i. It is a Social Sector Initiative to be
implemented nationally in order to promote entrepreneurship among the Scheduled
Casts who are oriented towards innovation and growth technologies.

ii. The fund has been launched with initial
capital of 200 crore rupees .

iii. The initiative also aims to increase
financial inclusion for SC entrepreneurs and to motivate them for further
growth of their communities.
iv. Under the scheme, financial
assistance upto 15 crore rupees will be provided to the SC entrepreneurs for a
period upto 6 years.
v. The Green Business Scheme focuses
to provide the loan for unit cost up to 1 lakh rupees at concessional rate of
interest and will be provided to Scheduled Castes for activities such as
e-rickshaw, Solar Pump and Solar energy powered implements.

5. President
launches pulse polio immunization programme

i. President Pranab Mukherjee today launched
the Pulse Polio Immunization Programme by administering polio drops to children
at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

ii. Children of less than 5 years of age will be
given polio drops as part of the Government’s drive to sustain polio
eradication from the region. The National Immunization Day will be held

Note: India has been implementing the Pulse Polio
Programme since 1995.

ii. The South-East Asia region of WHO has been
certified on 27th of March last year as ‘polio free’, which means transmission
of polio virus has been interrupted in this block of 11 countries including
India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, Nepal and Sri Lanka for the last three

iii. India is mindful of the risks of importation
of polio virus from these countries and high level of immunity in the
population needs to be maintained.

6. 8th
India-Japan Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue held in New Delhi

i. The 8th India-Japan Foreign Ministers’
Strategic Dialogue held in New Delhi today.
ii. Both the leaders discuss about
the Tokyo Declaration issued during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to
Tokyo in September last year.
iii. External
Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida deliberate
a range of key issues including joint production of amphibious aircraft US-2,
removing hurdles to finalise a civil nuclear deal.

7. Sri Lanka’s
new Foreign Minister arrive India

i. Sri Lanka’s new Foreign Minister Mangala
Samaraweera is arriving in New Delhi today on a three day visit to India.

ii. During the visit he will meet Ms Swaraj and
will call on Prime Minister Narendra Modi. This will be the first high level
exchange between India and Sri Lanka since Maithripala Sirisena government came
to power on 8th of this month.

8. Viktor Troicki
win Sydney title

i. Viktor Troicki of Serbia defeat Mikhail
Kukushkin in a straight set 6-2 6-3 to win the Sydney International on

ii. The 28-year-old right-hander, who returned
to action last July after serving a one-year ban for missing a dope test, took
just over an hour to claim his second career ATP title.

9. Sania Mirza,
Bethanie Mattek-Sands win Sydney doubles title

i. Sania Mirza and Bethanie Mattek-Sands won
doubles title at the Sydney International Tennis Tournament.

ii. This is Sania’s first title of the season
and 23rd of her career.
iii. They defeated top-seeded
Americans Abigail Spears and Raquel Kops-Jones in the summit clash 6-3, 6-3

iv. It was fifth WTA title for Sania and
Bethanie together.

10. Book titled
The Red Sari written by Javier Moro released

i. “The Red Sari” an unauthorized biography of Congress
Party President Sonia Gandhi, written by Spanish author Javier Moro released.

ii. The book describes Sonia Gandhi’s life journey form
childhood to the congress party president.