The Daily Brief – 2nd July 2016

  • The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has noted that there may be need for auditing financial regulators such as the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Currently, the CAG is Shashi Kant Sharma. He replaced former CAG Vinod Rai in May, 2013. In light of the growing incidence of financial frauds, the CAG has suggested that his office also conduct the audit of the RBI, along with other regulators such as the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA), and Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA).
  • The Urban Development ministry has added nine more cities to the list of 100 smart cities in the upcoming Smart City Mission competition. These new capital cities include Patna, Trivandrum, Bangalore, Amaravati, Itanagar and Gangtok. J&K has also been allowed to nominate both Jammu and Srinagar.
  • The Union Law Ministry has asked the Law Commission to examine in detail all issues pertaining to the Uniform Civil Code and submit a report to the government. Law minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda confirmed the law ministry initiative. This is in pursuance of Article 44 of the Constitution that aspires towards a uniform civil code. Implementation of a common code has also been part of the BJP’s election manifesto.
  • The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) held a vote to set up an Independent Expert’s office for ending discrimination against the LGBT community (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender). India has abstained from voting on the issue, as the matter of LGBT rights is still being considered in a bunch of curative petitions before the Supreme Court. The resolution, which was backed by the Latin American member nations, was opposed by Russia and the Islamic countries; India, Philippines and South Africa abstained.
  • Mumbai Samachar, a Gujarati newspaper, has completed 195 years of its existence. It was founded in 1822 by Fardunjee Marzban, a Parsi scholar. The event was commemorated by Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.
  • The Ministry of External Affairs has announced that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be visiting four African countries between July 7th and 11th. These countries are Mozambique, South Africa, Kenya and Tanzania.
  • The Central government has announced an agreement with the Cyprus government to resolve all pending issues in the India-Cyprus Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA). DTAAs are entered into between countries so as to resolve issues of the same item being taxed twice in both jurisdictions, as a result of similar taxation laws.
  • The Reserve Bank of India has allowed J.P. Morgan Chase to open three more branches of its bank in India. At present, the bank’s sole branch is in Mumbai. It will soon expand to New Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai.
  • Nirmala has become the first athlete to reach the Rio Olympics qualifying mark. She hails from Haryana, and has clocked 51.48 in the women’s 400 m.
  • C. Mary Kom is set to be part of Vijender Singh’s bout for the WBO super middleweight Asia Pacific championship. Mary Kom is a five-time world champion and Olympic bronze medallist.
  • Apple has won a US patent for a technology that can force iPhones into disabling video-recording mode at concert venues. The technology uses infrared signals to force the phone to shut down its video recording. The development comes as musicians and actors regularly complain about the growing use of mobile phones and selfie sticks at live performances, which allow fans to immediately share content.
  • The Pakistan Senate’s Functional Committee on Human Rights is seeking to dissolve a constitutionally set up body on grounds that its recommendations have been against the interests of women. This body is called the Council for Islamic Ideology (CII), and was set up under the military regime of Ayub Khan in 1962. It’s responsibility was to give legal advice on Islamic issues to the Pakistani government and Parliament.

Today’s Quiz

1. Who is currently the Comptroller and Auditor General of India?

2. Which of the following cities has not been included in the Smart City Mission competition?

3. Under what provision of the Constitution is a uniform civil code envisioned?

4. Who is currently serving as the Law Minister of India?

5. Who has recently become the first athlete to qualify for the Rio Olympics?

6. Which of the following countries has not abstained from voting on the UNHRC’s resolution pertaining to LGBT rights?

7. Which foreign bank has recently been allowed to open three new branches in India, by the RBI?

8. Which of the following companies has recently won a patent for remotely shutting down video recording in phones?

9. Which of the following regional newspapers has recently commemorated 195 years of circulation?

10. Who is currently serving as the Chief Minister of Maharashtra?



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