1. Puducherry city first to get Smart city nomination
i. Puducherry city has emerged as the first nomination to be received by the Urban Development Ministry for a Smart City Mission. In this regard, Government of Union Territory of Puducherry has nominated its capital city for inclusion in the Union Government’s flagship 100 Smart Cities Mission.
ii. It also has forwarded the nomination along with all the forms and documents as required in the Stage-1 of ‘City Challenge’ competition.
iii. The nomination was forwarded based on the recommendations of the High Powered Steering Committee (HPSC) constituted as per the guidelines of mission. It was headed by Chief Secretary of UT and had overseen the process of first stage intra-state competition.
Since 2011, Puducherry Municipal Corporation (PM) has achieved 18 per cent improvement in provision of household sanitary latrines. Internal revenue generation has continuously increased by 14 per cent over the past three year period of 2012-13 to 2014-15.
2. 14 States, UTs achieve literacy rate of 80%: Government
i. Union Government has announced that 14 States and Union Territories (UTs) have achieved or exceeded the literacy rate of 80 percent. It was announced by Union Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
ii. 14 States and UTs are: Kerala, Lakshadweep, Mizoram, Goa, Tripura, Daman and Diu, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, NCR of Delhi, Chandigarh, Puducherry, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, Sikkim and Tamil Nadu.
iii. Union Government’s flagship scheme of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan has helped to improve literacy rate. For implementing the scheme, Centre has helped the States and UTs. The literacy of adults has been covered under the Saakshar Bharat Programme.
iv. It was also announced that 10 States and UTs have also been able to reduce gender gap to 10 per cent or less. These states are Punjab, Chandigarh, Nagaland, Mizoram, Tripura, Meghalaya, Goa, Lakshadweep, Kerala and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
3. National Broadcasting Day observed across the country
i. National Broadcasting Day was observed on 23 July 2015 across the country. It is on this day in 1927, the Indian Broadcasting Company started radio broadcasting from Bombay station.
ii. To mark the day, All India Radio (AIR) organized a symposium on the subject Creation of New India and Broadcasting Medium in New Delhi.
iii. Colonel Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, the Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, speaking at the symposium, highlighted the role of Prasar Bharati in taking news of public interest to the length and breadth of the country and said that government is committed to the autonomy of Prasar Bharati.
iv. Broadcasting in India began in July 1923 with programmes by the Radio Club of Mumbai. According to an agreement of 23 July 1927, the private Indian Broadcasting Company LTD (IBC) was authorized to operate two radio stations; the Mumbai station began on 23 July 1927, and the Calcutta station followed on 26 August 1927.
4. Conakry named as World Book Capital for 2017 by UNESCO
i. Conakry, the capital of the Republic of Guinea, was on 21 July 2015 named as the World Book Capital for 2017 by United Nations Organization for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO). The decision was made by an international committee of experts on 30 June 2015 during a meeting.
ii. The selection committee singled out Conakry for the quality and diversity of its programme, in particular for its focus on community involvement as well as for its well-structured budget and clear development goals with a strong emphasis on youth and literacy.
iii. The World Book Capital is selected every year by the international organizations that represent the three major sectors of the book industry:
· The International Publishers Association (IPA)
· The International Booksellers Federation (IBF)
· The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA)
· The year for awarding World Book Capital starts on 23 April, which is celebrated as World Book and Copyright Day.
5. CCEA extends CCTNS deadline to March 2017
i. Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has extended the deadline for implementation of Crime and Criminals Tracking network and Systems (CCTNS) project till March 2017.
ii. Decision in this regard was taken by CCEA meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra on the proposal forwarded by Union Ministry of Home Affairs. CCEA also approved additional five years phase for operation and maintenance of the CCTNS up to March 2022.
iii. It is an ambitious online system and central citizen portal that will link all state-level citizen websites under single platform which will provide a number of citizen friendly services. The services will include reporting a crime, police verification for passports, linkages with UIDAI, transport database and National Population Register.
iv. By computerising the functioning of police stations, prosecution directorates, prisons and forensic laboratories. It will also ensure smooth data exchange among these various systems along with e-court systems which are already functioning throughout the country.
6. World University Games no-show: AIU hands three-year ban to archers and coach, wants money back
i. Cracking the whip on the three archers who missed the bronze medal play-off during the recently-concluded World University Games, the Association of Indian Universities has banned them and their coach for three years, besides asking them to return the money spent on them.
ii. The compound team trio did not turn up at the bronze medal play-off against Italy in the July 3-14 World University Games at Gwangju in South Korea, thereby forfeiting the match.
iii. The inquiry report was examined, it was found/observed that athletes and official of the Indian contingent failed to turn up for participation in the prestigious event.
iv. the AIU did not furnish the reason why the athletes could not reach the archery competition venue on time. The AIU had also asked for a report from R K Sharma who had accompanied the Indian contingent to Korea.
7. Finger lickin' train food: KFC partners with IRCTC to start delivery system for passengers
i. The fast food chain has tied up with the IRCTC to start a delivery system for passengers. From 20 July onwards, a person travelling on train can order KFC meal, while booking ticket through IRCTC, under e-catering service initiatives, KFC said in a statement.
ii. this facility is available only on 12 trains passing through New Delhi railway station. However, it will be expanded to Vishakhapatnam, Hyderabad (Kacheguda) and Bangalore (Yeshwantpur) stations over the next 10 days, the statement added.
iii. Consumers will have to visit the IRCTC website or call on 18001034139 (Toll Free) to place their order. A password will then be sent by KFC to the consumer’s mobile phone which will have to be mentioned at the time of delivery.
iv. IRCTC is looking to expand its culinary network by attempting to get joints such as Cafe Coffee Day, Barista and even Subway in the fold. IRCTC in its effort to offer better fare at stations is talking to Cafe Coffee Day, Pizza Hut, Barista Coffee, Subway and Jumboking Vadapav, urging them to open eateries at stations.
8. Archie Comics cartoonist Tom Moore dies at 86
i. Tom Moore, the cartoonist who brought to life the escapades of Riverdale residents in Archie comics has passed away. He was 86.
ii. Moore, who began drawing cartoons while in the US Navy during the Korean War, died early Monday morning while in ospice care in his hometown of El Paso, his son Lito Bujanda-Moore told The Associated Press yesterday.
iii. Moore drew Archie Andrews and his friends on and off from 1953 until he retired in the late 1980s. Annual sales of the comic regularly surpassed half a million during the 1960s, according to the El Paso Times.
iv. After retiring, Moore kept tabs on Archie, and disagreed when the comic book company decided to kill off the character. The El Paso Museum of Art displayed some of Moore's work and his vast comic collection about 20 years ago.
9. R.D. Burman: The Prince of Music written by Khagesh Dev Burman
i. Book titled R.D. Burman: The Prince of Music authored by Khagesh Dev Burman was released on 27 June 2015, the day when the music world celebrated the 76th birth anniversary of Rahul Dev Burman.
ii. The author through the book has tried to look into almost every aspect of R.D Burman like his childhood in Kolkata, his failure in studies, his beginning as an assistant to his father SD Burman as well as his rise as a musician. It also looks into his downfall due to ill-health and some bad decisions.
iii. The book also reveals the fact about number of songs and tunes of Burman, which remained unused. It says that there are songs which remained unreleased or shelved films, like two songs in unreleased film Raj and two songs of the unreleased Abhi Abhi remained shelved