Daily Current Affairs – 22nd June, 2016, Wednesday

1. SBI named in Hall Of Shame list of banks funding cluster bomb producers

a) State Bank of India (SBI) figures in an index titled ‘Hall of Shame’ which comprises 158 banking and financial institutions that have invested millions of dollars in companies which are making cluster bombs. The list has been globally published by Dutch campaign group PAX

b) This list includes giant companies like JP Morgan, Barclays, Bank of America & Credit Suisse. These companies have invested over $28 billion in seven producers of cluster munitions between June 2012 and April 2016.

c) The convention on cluster munitions (CCM) was signed by 94 signatories in 2008 which prohibits use, production, stockpiling and transfer of cluster munitions. Most of the names enlisted in the PAX’s list are not among the signatories of this convention.

d) Highest number of banks i.e. 74 are from the US, followed by China (29) and South Korea (26). SBI is the only financial institution from India which is mentioned in this list. It is because, SBI had made available $87 million to ‘Orbital ATK’ which is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of ammunition and leading supplier of electronic warfare.

2. Virginia Raggi becomes first female Mayor of Rome

a) Anti-establishment Five Star movement candidate Virginia Raggi has become the first female Mayor of Rome.

b) She received around 2/3rd of votes against Roberto Giachetti of Renzi’s centre-left Democratic Party (DP).

c) Five Star movement (M5S) emerged as the main opposing force against the Matteo Renzi, Italy’s Prime Minister. This result is a blow to the Renzi’s bloc and bright prospect for the M5S, the anti-establishment party founded by comedian turned politician Beppe Grillo.

3. HAL unveils indigenous basic trainer aircraft HTT-40

a) Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has inaugurated indigenous basic trainer aircraft HTT-40 in Bengaluru.

b) Hindustan Turbo Trainer-40 (HTT-40) is a two seater aircraft designed and developed by HAL. It is used for the first-stage training for all flying cadets of the three services. The programme aims to achieve its operational clearance by 2018.

4. China’s Sunway Taihu Light declared world’s fastest supercomputer

a) China’s Sunway Taihu Light has been declared the world’s fastest supercomputer. It has topped the list of 500 supercomputers around the world, thereby thrusting China to top the list for the seventh consecutive time. It has been developed by the National Research Centre of Parallel Computer Engineering and Technology (NRCPC).

b) This supercomputer can make 93 quadrillion calculations per second with its processing capacity of 125.436 petaflops (PFlops) per second. It is the first supercomputer to achieve speeds in excess of 100 PFlops.

5. Anand Desai Committee on Specific Relief Act, 1963 submits report

a) An expert committee headed by Anand Desai, set up to examine the Specific Relief Act, 1963 has submitted its report to Union Law and Justice minister Sadananda Gowda.

b) The committee stressed on the need for change in the present scheme of act so that specific performance is granted as a general rule and grant of compensation or damages for non-performance remains as an exception.

c) Modifications proposed by the committee are as follows:

i.To change the approach, from damages being the rule and specific performance being the exception, to specific performance being the rule, and damages being the alternate remedy.

ii.To provide guidelines for reducing the discretion granted to courts and tribunals while granting performance and injunctive reliefs.

iii.To introduce provisions for rights of third parties (other than for Government contracts).

iv.To consider addressing unconscionable contracts, unfair contracts, reciprocity in contracts etc., and implied terms.

6. Andhra’s Mori village chosen for development as smart village

a) Mori village from East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh has been chosen to be developed as a smart village of global standards. Under this project the Mori village will be developed as a self-contained sustainable business model.

b) The prototype of the project will be ready by mid-December, 2016. The project will incorporate the use of digital tools, real-time information and uninterrupted fibre optic internet connectivity with 15 Mbps speed.

c) This cashew exporting village in Andhra Pradesh will recieve e-commerce facility and 24×7 uninterrupted power supply. The project will encourage use of organic farming for shrimp hatcheries in the village.

d) The project involves the Innovation Society of the Andhra Pradesh Government, the University of California at Berkeley, Google, Cisco, IBM, Ericsson, etc.

7. Nikesh Arora resigns as President and COO of SoftBank Group

a) Nikesh Arora has recently resigned as the representative director, president and chief operating officer of SoftBank group. He will assume an advisory role from 1 July, 2016.

b) He will also resign as the chairman of Yahoo Japan and as director of Sprint as the SoftBank group has stakes in these two companies.

c) Arora left Google as their Chief Business Officer in 2014 and joined SoftBank group as vice-chairman.

8. Noted Telangana poet and lyricist Guda Anjaiah dies

a) Veteran Telugu poet & lyricist from Telangana Guda Anjaiah recently passed away at the age of 61.

b) He was popular for his Ooru manadi ra, ee vada manadi ra, which was translated into multiple languages. His songs Rajiga ori Rajiga and Ayyoniva nuvvu avvoniva were used in ‘Poru’, a film based on the Telangana movement.

c) He has also written a novel called Polimera which talks about the days during the 1975 emergency.

9. Andhra postal circle releases stamps on Yoga booklet

a) To mark second anniversary of International Day of Yoga, Andhra Pradesh postal circle has released “Information booklet, Stamps on Yoga” and “12 stamps on Suryanamaskarams”.

b) The booklet contains illustrations and descriptions of 24 yoga asanas (postures) along with a brief description on the various Yoga postures depicted in the original stamps.

c) The booklet contains four commemorative stamps released in 1991 on various yoga postures-Bhujangasana, Dhanurasana, Ushtrasana and Utthita Trikonasana.

10. Centre approves proposal for greenfield electronic park in Odisha

a) Department of Electronics and Information Technology has approved setting up of a greenfield electronic park within the Infovalley complex, a dedicated IT hub, on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, Odisha.

b) The park will be set up under Electronic Manufacturing Cluster (EMC) on 203 acres of land. The estimated cost for this development is 205 crores of which 95 crores will be given by the government of India, rest will be invested by the state government.

c) Apart from developed land, road, power, water and recreation facilities, the park intends to provide common facilities for training, incubation and R&D activities to the interested entrepreneurs.