1. According to World Bank Report "MGNREGA" world’s largest public works programme
i) World Bank has ranked the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Gurantee Act (MGNREGA) as the world’s largest public works programme.
ii) It was revealed in recently released World Bank Group’s report titled ‘The State of Social Safety Nets 2015‘. Report Highlights MGNREGA (under Ministry of Rural Development) provides social security net to 182 million beneficiaries i.e. almost 15 per cent of the India’s population.
iii) Mid-day meal scheme (under Ministry of Human Resource Development) has been classified as biggest school feeding programme. It benefits around 105 million beneficiaries.
iv) Janani Suraksha Yojna (Under Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) is top-most social security programme with conditional cash transfers. It has 78 million beneficiaries.
v) Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (under Ministry of Rural Development) is the second-largest unconditional cash transfer social security progamme in the world. Five middle-income countries running the world’s largest social safety net programmes are India, China, South Africa and Ethiopia.
2. UGC grants heritage status to 19 colleges
i) UGC has approved for financial assistance to 19 colleges for conserving campuses and specialised courses related to heritage
ii) The colleges which have been granted the status include St.Xavier’s College, Mumbai; CMS College Kottayam; St Joseph College, Trichy; Khalsa College, Amritsar; St Bede’s College, Shimla, Christ Church College in Kanpur, Old Agra College, Agra; Meerut College, Meerut and Langat Singh College in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur.
iii) Others which have figured in the list are Govt.Brennan College, Kerala; University College in Mangalore, Cotton College in Guwahati, Midnapore college in West Bengal, Govt Medical Science in Jabalpur, Deccan Education Society’s Fergusson College in Pune, Hislop college in Nagpur, Govt. Gandhi Memorial Science College in Jammu, Kanya Mahavidyalya in Jalandhar and St Xavier’s College in Kolkata.
3. Infosys signs multi-year agreement with Deutsche Bank.
i) Infosys, India’s second largest IT services exporter, on Wednesday announced that it has signed a multi-year agreement with Deutsche Bank.
ii) Under the terms of the deal, Infosys will provide services like development, application maintenance, digital and mobility, package implementation and testing services across the Deutsche Bank Group, Infosys press release said.
iii) “Deutsche Bank is committed to applying innovative technology to enhance its efficiency and service to clients. Working with Infosys will help the bank to achieve these goals,” Kim Hammonds, Global Chief Information Officer, Deutsche Bank said.of the company unless it is required by law.
iv) Deutsche Bank’s Supplier Partnership Program was successfully launched in June 2014 to concentrate the most strategic vendors based on business impact across all categories of the bank.
4. BRICS Central Banks Sign Forex Reserves Pool Pact.
i) The five major emerging national economies, known by the acronym BRICS, were a step closer to setting up a $100 billion pool of mutual reserves by signing an “operational agreement”
ii) The pool would be drawn on by the central banks of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa whenever they suffered a shortage of dollar liquidity, helping them maintain financial stability, Russia’s central bank said.
iii) The Bank of Russia in Moscow. The central banks of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa have signed an operational pact to set up a pool of foreign exchange reserves.
iv) Financial stability has been Moscow’s sore point over the past year as the Russian economy has slipped into recession, while the country has lost access to global capital markets, due to Western sanctions, and has had to drain billions of dollars from its reserves.
5. Ashok Haldia appointed MD and CEO of PTC India Financial Services
i) PTC India Financial Services said on Wednesday that Ashok Haldia was appointed the company’s new Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.
ii) Haldia has been a part of the company’s board as a whole-time director for the last seven years. Prior to joining PTC India Financial Services, Haldia served as a Secretary in the Institute of Chartered Accounts of India. He has also been a member of several Central Government committees.
iii) Dr. Ashok Haldia is Whole Time Director of PTC India Financial Services Limited. A member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, Institute of Company Secretaries of India and the Institute of Cost and Works Accountants of India. Dr. Ashok Haldia has diversified experience of project financing and industrial financing policy, public sector policy reforms, evaluation and management, power sector reform, restructuring and financing.
6. K7 Computing signs pact with ICT Academy
i) K7 Computing Pvt. Ltd, a Chennai-based provider of safe and secure computing experience, has signed a memorandum with ICT Academy of Tamil Nadu to jointly conduct 12 power seminars across the state and ICT awareness week in six cities.
ii) The seminar will be held in Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai, Tiruchirapalli, Salem and Tirunelveli and will highlight the importance of cyber security and the latest developments within that spectrum, says a press release from K7.
iii) The academy, a Government of India, Government of Tamil Nadu and Industry initiative, has introduced a platform for all the stakeholders to discuss improving the industry-institute interaction on the key issues.
7. India, Kazakhstan launch first drilling at Satpayev oil block of OVL
i) India and Kazakhstan launched the first exploratory drilling at Satpayev oil block owned by India’s ONGC Videsh Limited (OVL) and Kazakhstan company KazMunaiGaz. It was jointly launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Kazakhstan premier Karim Massimov in Astana, Kazakh capital.
ii) Satpayev oil block is an offshore field located in the Northern Caspian Sea. It has potential reserves estimated at 1.8 billion barrels crude oil and natural gas.