Current Affairs – August 2014
1) Oscar organizers declared that they would give esteemed humanitarian award to US actor-producer-singer Harry Belafonte, whose efforts as an activist has assisted throw light on racism and discrimination.
2) Partha Mitra, an Indian researcher in the US has been awarded a prestigious research grant under President Barack Obama’s initiative to map the human brain.
3) Noted filmmaker and Poet, Muzaffar Ali (69), has been conferred 22nd Rajiv Gandhi National Sadbhavana Award. Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi, the president of All-India Congress Committee (AICC), presented him the award.
4) President Mr. Pranab Mukherjee presented the Outstanding Parliamentarian Awards to Arun Jaitley, Dr Karan Singh and Sharad Yadav for the year 2010, 2011 and 2012 respectively.
5) The International Mathematical Union gives the Fields Medal to mathematicians under the age of 40 at the International Congress of Mathematicians, held once every four years. The four 2014 Fields Medalists:
• Artur Avila: For his most noteworthy research is in the study of chaos theory and dynamical systems.
• Manjul Bhargava: For his contribution to number theory and algebra.
• Martin Hairer: For his researches on stochastic partial differential equations.
• Maryam Mirzakhani: For her work on the geometry of Riemann surfaces.
6) The list of Awardees for the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay award for year 2014 has been announced.
The Awardees are:
a) Hu shuli – Journalist from China
b) Wang Canfa – Lawyer, China
c) Saur Marlina Manurung – Anthropologist, Indonesia
d) Omara Khan Masoudi– National Museum director, Afghanistan
e) Randy Halasan – Teacher, Philippines
f) The Citizen’s Foundation – The Pakistani non-government group
7) Baba Kalyani has been re-nominated as the Co-Chairman of the India- Japan Business Leader’s Forum (IJBLF). The Ministry of Commerce and Indusry appointed Kalyani as chairperson of IJBLF.
8) Pakistan Government has appointed its Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif as mediator to neutralize the ongoing political crisis in the country.
9) Recep Tayyip Erdogan was sworn in as 12th President of Turkey. He was sworn-in a ceremony held at Parliament of Turkey in Ankarra.
10) Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan (SRK) has become the first Indian to become the brand ambassador of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL).
11) Seema Malhotra (42), an Indian-origin British MP, has been appointed as the Labour party’s maiden shadow minister dealing with violence against women and girls. Malhotra was nominated shadow minster by Britain’s Opposition party leader Ed Miliband. Malhotra’s responsibility will also involve working on Labour’s Women’s Safety Commission, which will formulate laws to be enacted if Miliband is victorious in the next polls.
12) Yashwardhan Shukla, a 13-year old school boy based in Delhi, has penned a novel titled ‘Gods of Antarctica’. The book is a fictional tale of gods and monsters. The book was published by the Readers Paradise.
13) Thailand’s’s military’s top official, General Prayuth Chan-ocha (60), has been named the new Prime Minister of the country. Gen Prayuth was nominated in a legislature chosen by the junta and consisting mostly military and police figures. The general was the head of the army when he led a coup in May 2014. The coupled to the ouster of Yingluck Shinawatra’s civilian government.
14) Guru Hanuman Akhara, a wrestling academy based in Delhi, has been chosen forRashtriya Khel Protsahan Puraskar (RKPP) for year 2014. As per Sports Ministry, Guru Hanuman Akhara has been chosen for ‘establishment and management of sports academies of excellence.’ President Pranab Mukherjee will honor the RKPP awardees along with Arjuna, Dronacharya and Dhyan Chand award winners at the National Sports Awards function in Delhi on August 29, 2014.
15) India’s’s first indigenously-built stealth anti-submarine warfare INS Kamorta was commissioned into Indian Navy by Defence Minister Arun Jaitley at naval dockyard in Vishakhapatnam.
16) An Indian-origin graduate student known as Dheeraj Pasham has discovered and measured one of the most elusive and mysterious objects in the Universe — a middling-sized black hole
17) The managing committee of Indian Bank’s Association (IBA) as its Chairman has elected Mr. T M Bhasin, CMD, Indian Bank, for the year 2014-15.
18) On behalf of IBA, Mr Bhasin, will be associated with “Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana” Mission, headed by Union Finance Minister.
19) 16-year old Max Verstappen is set to create history by becoming the youngest ever Formula One (F1) driver next season after Toro Rosso announced that the youngster will replace Jean-Éric Vergne. Verstappen is a Dutch and is son of the former F1 driver Jos.
20) Athletics Federation of India (AFI) President Adille Sumariwala has been appointed the Chef-de-Mission of the Indian contingent for next month’s Asian Games at Incheon, South Korea.
21) Prof. Kuruppassery Varkey Thomas has been appointed as Chairman of Public Accounts Committee (PAC). Thomas is the senior Congress Parliamentarian from Ernakulum Constituency, Kerala. The position was previously held by BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi and had chairman of PAC for four consecutive years during 15th Lok Sabha (2009-2014).
22) Rajni Razdan (64) assumed charge as new chairman of Union Public Service Commission, which conducts the prestigious civil services examination to select IAS, IFS and IPS officers among others. Outgoing chairperson D P Agrawal administered Razdan the oath as UPSC chief.
23) PM Narendra Modi in his maiden Independence Day speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort, announced a new financial scheme named ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana’ to help the poor open bank accounts which will come bundled with a debit card and life insurance cover.
24) Justice R Banumathi has become the first woman judge from Tamil Nadu to be elevated to the Supreme Court.
25) Indian Institute of Management Calcutta has become the first IIM to achieve the AACSB accreditation in business programme, giving a global recognition it its students and helping it to attract more foreign faculty to its campus.
26) In order to strengthen financial inclusion, World Bank’s arm International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Airtel Zambia has signed an agreement to increase access to mobile financial services in that nation. The agreement is valued at $1 million.
27) ICICI Bank, the country’s largest private sector lender, has introduced an equated monthly installment (EMI) option for its customers on debit card purchases.
28) A forensic audit has been ordered by the Finance Ministry on Dena Bank and Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC) following reports of misappropriation of funds to the tune of Rs.436 crore from fixed deposits received from customers.
29) Thailand’s coup leader General Prayuth Chan-ocha was appointed prime minister on 21st August.
30) India successfully conducted trials of its indigenously developed surface-to-air ‘Akash’ missile, which has a strike range of 25 kms, as part of a user trial by the Air Force from the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur.