Daily NEWS Update - 26th and 27th July 2015

1. PM launches new scheme for power reforms in rural areas.

i. Prime Minister Narendra Modi today launched the ‘Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana’ for power sector reforms in rural areas with a view to ensuring round the clock electricity supply to farmers and rural households.

ii. The new power scheme focuses on feeder separation (rural households and agricultural) and strengthening of sub-transmission and distribution infrastructure, including metering at all levels in rural areas.

iii. The scheme is one of the flagship programmes of the Power Ministry and will facilitate 24x7 supply of electricity.

iv. The earlier scheme for rural electrification, Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana (RGGVY), which was launched by previous UPA government, has been subsumed in the new scheme as its rural electrification component.

v. The scheme has an outlay of Rs. 76,000 crore for implementation of the projects under which the Centre shall provide grant of Rs. 63,000 crore. A total of Rs. 14,680 crore worth projects have already been approved out of which projects amounting to Rs. 5,827 crore have been approved for Bihar state.

2. Christopher Froome rides to victory in 100th Tour de France.

i. Chris Froome became the first Briton to win the Tour de France twice when he safely reached the finish line in Paris at the end of the three-week race.

ii. Exceptionally, the 100th Tour treated itself to a nighttime finish on the Champs—Elysees. The famous avenue and the Arc de Triomphe at the top of it were bathed in yellow light emphasizing the canary yellow of Froome’s famous jersey.

iii. In two years, Britain has now had two different winners- Bradley Wiggins in 2012 and then Froome, a cooler, calmer, more understated but no less determined character than his Sky teammate with famous sideburns.

iv. Froome rode into Paris in style- Riders pedaled up to him to offer congratulations; he sipped from a flute of champagne; a Tour organizer stuck an arm from his car window to shake Froome’s hand. He dedicated his victory to his late mother, Jane, who died in 2008.

3. Vettel wins classic Hungarian GP, Lewis Hamilton sixth.

i. German driver Sebastian Vettel delivered an emotional high-speed tribute to his late colleague Jules Bianchi on Sunday when he stormed to victory for Ferrari in a dramatic and incident-filled Hungarian Grand Prix.

ii. The four-time world champion claimed his second victory of the season and 41st of his career -- drawing him level with the late Brazilian legend Ayrton Senna in equal third on the all-time list -- after leading from the start to dominate a thrilling and unpredictable contest.

iii. The Red Bull pair of Russian Daniil Kvyat and Australian Daniel Ricciardo finished in second and third respectively..

4. Nation commemorates valour of Indian soldiers in Kargil War.

i. The sixteenth anniversary of the Indian victory in the 1999 Kargil war was celebrated across the country on 26th July.

ii. Functions are being held in all army cantonments and by citizen groups across the country. The primary function, however, is being held in Dras under the aegis of 8 Division that bore the maximum brunt of the war.

iii. July 26, 1999, was a fateful day when the Indian Army put paid to yet another audacious misadventure by Pakistan in the unforgiving heights of the Kargil and the Batalik sectors.

iv. July 26, 1999, was a fateful day when the Indian Army put paid to yet another audacious misadventure by Pakistan in the unforgiving heights of the Kargil and the Batalik sectors.

v. The Kargil war, that witnessed fighting in heights up to 18,000 feet with extremely low temperatures, culminated with the complete routing of the enemy and physical re-possession of the ground that had been occupied by stealth and deceit.

5. Axis Bank signs $200-mn loan agreement with ADB.

i. Axis Bank today signed a USD 200-million, seven-year bilateral loan agreement with the Asian Development Bank. 

ii. The loan will help bolster Bank's efforts to improve farm efficiency by extending customised and affordable agriculture credit, that will help leverage its semi-urban and rural branch network to deliver agriculture credit, the city-headquartered lender said in a statement.

iii. Axis Bank treasury and transaction banking head Sidharth Rath said "this commitment from ADB will strengthen our rural lending and microfinance initiatives, which we regard as an integral component of its overall strategy." 

6. ONGC to invest $8.8 billion in KG oil and gas discoveries.

i. State-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) plans to invest over USD 8.8 billion in bringing to production its much-touted KG-basin oil and gas discoveries by 2018-19. 

ii. ONGC has divided 12 oil and gas finds in the block KG-DWN-98/2 or KG-D5 and gas discovery in an adjacent G-4 block the Bay of Bengal into three clusters to quickly bring them to production, a senior company official said. 

iii. The 7,294.6 sq km deepsea KG-D5 block has been broadly categorised into Northern Discovery Area (NDA - 3,800.6 sq km) and Southern Discovery Area (SDA - 3,494 sq km). 

iv. ONGC plans to develop the discoveries in the block in three clusters -- 14.5 million standard cubic meters per day of gas for 15 years from Cluster-1 comprising of D&E finds of NDA in KG-D5 block and G-4 find in the a neighbouring area. 

7. Maharashtra govt to develop six solar cities targeting solar capacity of 7,500 MW.

i. Maharashtra government has placed a comprehensive plan to develop six solar cities in order to add solar capacity of 7,500 MW in the state.

ii. To enhance solar capacity in country Centre has planned to develop 55 solar cities across the country among them six are from Maharashtra these are – Nagpur, Thane, Aurangabad, Kalyan-Dombivli, Shirdi and Nanded.

iii. The selection of these cities was done on basis of the population and other criteria and would be developed through the joint funding from Centre and State Government.

iv. To meet the increasing demand for power Maharashtra government has targeted to add 14,400 MW through renewable energy source. Out of this target nearly 7,500 MW will be added through solar energy projects, over 5,000 MW will be added through wind and rest from other sources like industrial and domestic waste.

8. CSC and HCL forms joint venture to provide technology services, solutions to banks.

i. Computer Science Corporation (CSC) and Hindustan Computer Limited (HCL) to big IT companies have signed an agreement to form a new company to provide technology services and solutions to the banking industry.

ii. In the joint statement the partners said that their main focus will be on platform modernisation, product functionality enhancement and to capitalise their capabilities in addressing global core banking software market.

iii. According to the agreement CSC that serves in 15 countries with 100 premier banking and financial services clients, will provide its core banking expertise for software and product development.

iv. Whereas, HCL will provide funds, it’s banking sales and client engagement expertise and also its experience in product engineering and application implementation services in order to modernise the banking industries.

9. BEL bags Dun Bradstreet’s India’s Top PSUs Awards 2015.

i. The Defence PSU Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) became the front runner in the Dun & Bradstreet’s ‘India’s Top PSUs Awards 2015 in the category of electrical and electronic equipment sector.

ii. The award was received by Chairman and Managing Director of BEL Mr. S K Sharma along with Anandi Ramalingam the General Manager-National Marketing for BEL.

iii. This award sponsored by The Dun & Bradstreet an US public company to acknowledge the critical role played by the PSUs in the development of the Indian economy.

iv. BEL was declared winner in electrical and electronic equipment category for providing electrical equipment and electronic services to the Indian Defence Services. It has provided night vision, critical communication systems, and electronic warfare and radar systems to the Indian Defence services for last 60 years.

10. Anand Krishnamurthy appointed CEO and MD of CSB bank.

i. Anand Krishnamurthy is now the new MD and CEO of Catholic Syrian Bank (CSB) replacing Rakesh Bhatia who had quit due to personal reason.

ii. This appointment was done by the board of directors of CSB among the three named sent to RBI.

iii. Mr. Anand has previously worked with HSBC for 22 years and also headed the Wholesale Banking and Treasury of CSB for last one year. He was responsible for corporate banking, integrated treasury operations of the Bank and SME business for CSB.

iv. The Catholic Syrian Bank is 94 year old private sector bank founded on 26th November 1920. It has its strong base in Kerala along with significant presence in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.  Recently it has filed for an IPO for 400 crore rupees.

11. Indian women wrestling team wins silver medal in the Kazakhstan Presidential Cup.

i. Indian women’s wrestling team has won the silver medal after finishing second in the fifth Senior International Wrestling Tournament (also known as Cup of the President of Republic of Kazakhstan).

ii. The eight-member team bagged a silver medal at the July 23-26 event held in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana. Team members who won the match are Vinesh (48kg), Lalita Sehrawat (55kg) and Anita (63kg) in their respective weight categories. Sakshi Malik lost just one fight in 58kg division which resulted with silver medal for Indian team.

iii. For this victory, Indian team received a prize money of US 10,000 dollars along with a trophy and medals. Host country Kazakhstan won the gold medal, while Mangolia won the bronze medal.

12. Rajesh Exports buys world's largest gold refining company Valcambi for Rs 2,560 cr.

i. Jewellery company Rajesh Exports Ltd on Monday said that it has bought Valcambi, the world’s largest gold refining company, in an all-cash deal worth $400 million ( Rs 2560 crore).

ii. The company was selected after a global search by Valcambi’s existing owners led by Newmont Mining Corp, the world’s largest gold jewellery maker said.

iii. The deal will help it secure raw material supplies and will add to earnings per share, the company said.
iv. India is the world’s biggest consumer of gold, with annual demand hovering around 900 tonnes per year.