Daily Current Affairs – 24th and 25th October 2015, Saturday and Sunday

1. World Polio Day observed on October 24

(i) October 24 is annually observed as World Polio Day to create awareness about hazards of the crippling disease.

(ii) This day was established by the Rotary International over a decade ago to mark the birth of Jonas Salk, who was the first to lead a team to develop vaccine against Poliomyelitis. 

(iii) Use of this inactivated poliovirus vaccine and later the the use of oral poliovirus developed by Albert Sabin resulted in establishment of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in 1988.

2. Hurricane Patricia wrecks havoc in Mexico 

(i)  Hurricane Patricia that hit Mexico recently has been tagged as one of the strongest

recorded hurricanes. A Category 5 hurricane, it caused extensive damage to the nation’s

rural areas.

(ii) Residents and tourist in southwestern parts of Mexico witnessed fierce

winds, torrential rains and flash floods.

(iii) The U.S. Department of State called the storm “extraordinarily

dangerous” and urged millions of US citizens visiting or living in the area to avoid the

coast and heed all evacuation warnings.

3. Wal-Mart bribed officials in India: US government report 

(i) Recently, the US government released findings of a three-year long investigation, in which it was

found that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. had paid bribes to low-grade, local officials in India to help move

goods through customs or acquire real estate permits. 

(ii) The probe also unearthed evidence of

corruption in the retail corporation’s Mexico business.

(iii) The company is expected to face charges

for violating the US Foreign Corruption Practices Act due to these illegal payments.

4. China steps forward to supply petrol to fuel-starved Nepal 

(i) China recently announced to provide Nepal with 1.3 million litres (340,000 gallons) of petrol in

order to help the country tackle severe fuel shortage.

(ii) The fuel crunch worsened ever since the

Madhesis, an ethnic group, started protesting in southern Nepal against the country’s new

constitution and blocked all essential supplies from India. This would be the first time Nepal

would get fuel from China.

5. WHO report stresses on reducing the usage of short-lived climate pollutants

(i) The World Health Organisation (WHO) recently released a report titled-Reducing global health

risks through mitigation of short-lived climate pollutants.

(ii) The report highlights the importance of

reducing the emissions of black carbon, ozone, methane (known as short-lived climate pollutants

or SLCPs) and carbon dioxide, as they not only contribute to global warming and climate change,

but also lead to over 7 million premature deaths annually.

6. Andhra Pradesh inks deal with Japan  

(i) Japan and Andhra Pradesh signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) promoting investment

by Japanese firms in the south-Indian state.

(ii) Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu and Japanese

Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry Yosuke Takagi signed the pact.

(iii) In addition to this, an

MoU was signed between the Andhra Pradesh Finance Department and Japan Bank for

International Cooperation (JBIC) to invite foreign investments and develop the state’s new capital

and the region.

7. President confers Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards

(i) On October 23, President Pranab Mukherjee presented the Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards and Fellowship in the year 2014 in New Delhi.

(ii) The Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships were given to Musicologist S R Janakiraman, filmmaker and theatre doyen M S Sathyu, Indian classical singer Vijay Kichlu and musician Tulsidas Borkar.

(iii) In addition, 35 other persons across disciplines of dance, drama and music were conferred Akademi awards for 2014 by the President.

8. Alok Rawat becomes the first male member of National Commission for Women 

(i) Former Cabinet Secretary Alok Rawat was appointed as the first male member of the National

Commission for Women, a five-member body.

(ii) Rawat is a 1977 Sikkim Cadre IAS Officer and

has earlier served in various capacities, including as the Director/Joint Secretary in Ministry of

Defence and Ministry of Road Transport and Highways; Secretary (UPSC); Secretary

(Coordination and Public Grievances) in the Cabinet Secretariat and Secretary in Ministry of

Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation.

9. Sam Pitroda’s autobiography Dreaming Big – My Journey to Connect India released

(i) In October 2015, Sam Pitroda, considered to be the father of India’s telecom revolution, launched

his autobiography titled Dreaming Big: My Journey to Connect India.

(ii) The book was launched in

New Delhi and various dignitaries, including former PM Manmohan Singh and Congress vice –

president Rahul Gandhi, attended the launch.

(iii) The book provides an insight into Pitroda’s close ties with former Indian PM Rajiv Gandhi and

captures their efforts to shape the country’s information technology revolution. Pitroda served as

the chairman of the National Knowledge Commission from 2005 to 2009 in the UPA government.

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