1. Aruna Sethi appointed as head of Indian Cost Accounting Service

  1. Aruna Sethi, Principal Adviser (Cost) has been appointed as the head of Indian Cost Accounting Service. This appointment makes her the first woman to head the Indian Cost Accounting Service (ICoAS).
  2. Previously, she has worked in the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Ministry of Defence.
  3. ICoAS constituted in 1978, is one of the six organized Accounting Services of the Government of India. It is a professional body staffed by qualified Cost/ Chartered Accountants.
  4. This Office is responsible for advising the Ministries and Government Undertakings on cost accounts matters and to undertake cost investigation work on their behalf.

2. Sarangi maestro Pandit Ram Narayan selected for Bhimsen Joshi Award

  1. Sarangi maestro Pandit Ram Narayan has been selected for the prestigious Bharat Ratna Pandit Bhimsen Joshi Classical Music Award for the year 2015-2016.
  2. The announcement for the prestigious award was made by Maharashtra’s Cultural Affairs Minister Vinod Tawde.
  3. The Bharat Ratna Pandit Bhimsen Joshi Classical Music Award is an annual award, which was instituted by the Maharashtra Government. The award includes Rs 5 lakh in cash, a citation and a memento and is given to individuals who have excelled in classical vocal or instrumental music.
  4. Pandit Ram Narayan was awarded India’s second highest civilian honour, the Padma Vibhushan, in 2005 for popularising sarangi as a solo concert instrument in Hindustani classical music.

3. Pacific Rim nations sign Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement

  1. The 12 Pacific Rim countries have signed the US-led Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement in New Zealand.
  2. The deal was led by New Zealand Prime Minister John Key and US Trade Representative Mike Froman at Auckland’s Skycity Convention Centre.
  3. The agreement was signed by Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States of America and Vietnam. These countries account for about 40% of the world economy.
  4. However, the countries involved have just 2 years to ratify or reject the pact back home. The Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement that took about 5 years to finalize is facing protests especially in the United States with fears of jobs moving from the country to Asia.

4. CIPET signs MoU with Karnataka Government for setting up Advanced Polymer Laboratory in Bengaluru

  1. Central Institute of Plastic Engineering & Technology (CIPET), under the Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers, Government of India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Karnataka Government to set up Advanced Polymer Design and Development Research Laboratory cum High Learning Centre at Bengaluru.
  2. The MoU was signed in the presence of Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers, Ananth Kumar and Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.
  3. The Laboratory will have all modern equipment and machinery at an estimated investment is Rs. 87 crore. The State Government of Karnataka shall allot the required land for the centre and also share 50 % of project cost.
  4. The centre will act as a multi-functional one-step facility with specialization in product development in Polymer sector. It will also conduct R&D, product tests and evaluations and commercialization of technology. The proposed centre shall play a pivotal role in developing new Plastics Technologies, Processes and Products to enhance the use of plastics for promotion of industries and betterment of the people.
  5. CIPET is a premier national Institution devoted to Academic, Technology Support and Research (ATR) activities for the growth of Polymer & allied industries in the country and has 28 centers across the country out of which 5 centers have been added during the current year 2015-16.

5. Alphabet Inc. becomes world’s most valuable company

  1. Alphabet Inc. is now the world’s most valuable company, going past Apple.
  2. Alphabet has a market cap of $547.1 billion, higher than Apple’s $529.3 billion. The shift occurred in extended trading after Alphabet released a fourth-quarter earnings report that highlighted the robust growth of the digital ad market.
  3. Alphabet Inc. is a California based American multinational with Google as the parent company. The company is headed by Google co-founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Page is currently the CEO of Alphabet Inc.

6. Former RBI deputy governor S.S. Tarapore passes away

  1. Former RBI deputy governor S.S. Tarapore has passed away in Mumbai at the age of 80.
  2. Tarapore joined RBI as a research officer in 1961 and joined office as Deputy Governor in September 1996. He served as RBI deputy governor between 1992 and 1996 and post retirement, he chaired two committees on full capital account convertibility and one on how to streamline the RBI.
  3. He completed his BA in economics from Sheffield University in 1958 and obtained his masters degree in economics from London University.
  4. He was known as a classic monetarist who ‘killed’ domestic industry through adoption of a tight monetary policy in 1995-96, as inflationary pressures built up alongside a weakening of rupee. He was against freeing up of India’s capital account without focusing first on price and macroeconomic stability. This held India in good stead during the 2008 global economic crisis.

7. Tata Consultancy Services rated the most powerful Brand in IT Services

  1. As per a recently released report by a leading global brand valuation firm, India’s Tata Consultancy Services has been rated as the world’s most powerful brand in Information Technology Services.
  2. The Brand Finance’s 2016 evaluated thousands of top brands in the world to determine the ones that are most powerful and valuable. Based on a wide variety of scoring system such as familiarity, loyalty, staff satisfaction and corporate reputation,Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) emerged as the IT services industry’s most powerful brand with a score of 78.3 points – earning it an AA+ rating.
  3. Across all industries Disney emerged the most powerful brand and Apple the most valuable brand 2016.

8. February 4 observed as World Cancer Day

  1. Every year February 4 is marked as the World Cancer Day, this year’s theme is, ‘We can. I can.’ The objective for this year is to prove that every single person can make a difference in the fight against cancer.
  2. World Cancer Day is part of the World Cancer Campaign which was adopted subsequently after the World Summit Against Cancer for the Millennium, on February 4, 2000.
  3. On the eve of World Cancer Day, the World Health Organisation warned that tobacco and alcohol abuse, unhealthy diets and physical inactivity significantly increase the risk of cancer. It added that in South-East Asia, occupational hazards and exposure to environmental substances continue to be a source of cancer and premature death.

9. R. S. Mann appointed as the Chairman of Punjab Pay Commission

  1. The former Punjab Chief Secretary R S Mann has been appointed as the Chairman of Sixth Punjab Pay Commission by the Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal.
  2. The appointment is effective from February 3, 2016 and as the new chairman Mr Mann is mandated to give recommendations pertaining to new pay scales for the employees and revision in the pension for pensioners/family pensioners of the state government employees after deliberations with the various state employees’ and pensioners’ associations.
  3. Punjab Finance Minister Parminder Singh Dhindsa has previously said, “Punjab’s biggest problem is high salary of employees. Our salary, pension and retirement benefits bill has reached Rs 28,000 crore and it is growing by Rs 3,000 crore per annum.” Mr Mann is expected to address all these issues as the new chief.

10. Gujarat’s former chief secretary DJ Pandian appointed as the Vice president of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

  1. Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das confirmed that Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has approved appointment of Mr Pandian as vice-president and chief investment officer.
  2. DJ Pandian, has formerly served as the chief secretary of Gujarat. AIIB is a 100 million dollar multi-lateral lender based in Beijing, China which was established with the view to lend for infrastructure projects such as energy, transportation, urban construction and logistics as well as education and healthcare in Asia.

11. Justice R S Reddy appointed as Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court

  1. Justice Ramayyagari Subhash Reddy has been appointed as Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court.
  2. He will replace Justice Jayant M Patel, who has been acting Chief Justice of Gujarat High Court since 13 August 2015. Prior to the appointment, he was Judge of the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad for the States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
  3. Reddy is an alumnus of University College of Law in Osmania University, Hyderabad. He was elected as the President of the Andhra Pradesh High Court Advocates Association for 2001-2002 and sworn in as Judge of High Court of Andhra Pradesh. He was later appointed as the Additional Judge of High Court of Andhra Pradesh in December 2012.

12. Samariya given additional charge as Central Provident Fund Commissioner

  1. HL Samariya, a 1985 batch IAS officer from the Telangana cadre, has been given additional charge as Central Provident Fund Commissioner (CPFC).
  2. As per a release, he has been given the charge for three months or till the appointment of a regular incumbent or till further orders.
  3. Samariya is currently working as the Additional Secretary in the Labour Ministry.

13. Mark Zuckerberg is now the world’s fourth richest person

  1. Mark Zuckerberg has become the world’s fourth-richest person, as Facebook shares fended off plunging stock markets.
  2. The Facebook founder has a net worth of $ 50 billion that ranks him ahead of America Movil’s Carlos Slim and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. Zuckerberg is the only billionaire among the world’s five-richest people whose fortune has increased this year.
  3. Facebook is also the fourth-most valuable company on the planet after Alphabet, Apple and Microsoft.

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