The Daily Brief – 12th August, 2016


The Daily Briefs are a comprehensive update of current affairs for the day. To know more about them, read this. If you’d like to receive updates for current affairs every day, you’ll need to subscribe by entering your email address at the right side of this page. The previous Briefs can be accessed at the archives here. Also, check out our mock tests!

  • The Central Bureau of Investigation has filed a charge sheet against former ISRO Chairman G. Madhavan Nair and other senior officials in the Antrix-Devas deal case for allegedly facilitating a wrongful gain of Rs.578 crore to Devas Multimedia Private Limited.
  • The Rajya Sabha has passed the Maternity Benefits (Amendment) Bill, 2016 to raise maternity leave for working women from 12 weeks to 26 weeks for two surviving children. With this, India will be in the third position in the world in terms of the number of weeks allowed for maternity leave behind Norway (44) and Canada (50).
  • The Union Government has launched two important initiatives of the Union Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), the MSME Databank Portal and Online Finance Facilitation Web Portal. They were launched by Union Minister of Finance & Corporate Affairs Arun Jaitley.
  • The Assam Government has launched  a Rhino horn verification process in order to verify the genuineness of rhino horns stored in various treasuries of Assam since 1980.
  • Information and Broadcasting Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu has announced an elaborate plan for the celebration of 69 years of India’s Independence. 75 Ministers have been asked to visit 150 sites where both famous and unsung heroes of the freedom movement were born, and hold a commemorative event in these birthplaces.
  • The Kerala Education Ministry has announced that all classes from VIII to XII, in government and aided sectors, will be made smart in the next three years. The government is also planning training programmes for teachers for the implementation of modern educational programmes.
  • The Delhi High Court has banned surge pricing on app based cabs such as Ola and Uber. The deadline for compliance has been fixed at August 22nd. Delhi has become the only region after Karnataka to impose such restrictions on surge pricing, where passengers are charged a much higher pricing at certain timings.
  • Swedish home furnishings major IKEA formally began work on its first store in India at Hyderabad. It is a a 400,000 sq. ft. facility that is planned to be opened in 2017.
  • Microsoft has appointed Sriram Rajamani as the new Managing Director (MD) of its India Research Lab.
Michael Phelps
  • Michael Phelps won his fourth consecutive 200m individual medley Olympic title. With this, he became the first swimmer ever to win four consecutive golds in the same event. Japan’s Kosuke Hagino won the silver medal and China’s Wang Shun took the bronze.
  • Russian air strikes on the Islamic State’s stronghold of Raqqa in Syria has killed at least 30 people, including 24 civilians. Confirming the air strikes, Russia said it had demolished “a chemical weapons factory in the city’s outskirts”.
  • NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has discovered steep-sided canyons, hundreds of meters deep, on Saturn’s moon Titan that are flooded with liquid hydrocarbons. The finding represents the first direct evidence of the presence of liquid-filled channels on Titan, as well as the first observation of the deep canyons.

Today’s Quiz

  1. India has recently reached the third position in the world in terms of the number of weeks allowed for maternity leave. Which two countries are ahead of India?

2. Which former ISRO Chairman has recently been named in a charge-sheet pertaining to the Antrix Devas deal?

3. Who is currently serving as the Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs?

4. Which state government has recently launched a Rhino verification process?

5. Which state government has announced the setting up of smart classrooms for Classes VIII to XII in the next three years?

6. Which High Court recently banned surge pricing on apps such as Uber and Ola?

7. Where does IKEA plan to set up its first store?

8. Who recently became the first swimmer ever to win four consecutive golds in the same event?


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