Current Affairs 31st March 2016 - Banking, SSC, UPSC Affairs

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Nestle India today said Rakesh Mohan, former RBI Deputy Governor, will join its board as an independent director. Mohans would come on Nestle Indias board from May 1, 2016, as an Independent Non-Executive Director, the company said in a statement.  Prior to it, he was on Nestle Indias board from April 2010 to October 2012 and had to relinquish it following his appointment as executive director at the International Monetary Fund. Mohan completed his three-year term at IMF in November, 2015. He had earlier held the position of Deputy Governor of RBI from September 2002 to October 2004, and July 2005 to June 2009. Mohan was also Secretary in Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance from October 2004 to July 2005.

The Supreme Court has approved the Centres guidelines to protect Good Samaritans, who help road accident victims, from being unnecessarily harassed by police or any other authority.A bench comprising justices V Gopala Gowda and Arun Mishra asked the central government to give wide publicity to these guidelines so that people who help others in the time of distress are not victimised by any authority.Earlier this month, the apex court had said it will pass an order on the recommendations of a committee headed by its former judge on road safety which advocated that people saving lives of road accident victims need not fear harassment by police or other authorities.

The Bihar Assembly on Wednesday unanimously passed the Bihar Excise (Amendment) Bill 2016 to enforce the ban on countrymade liquor from April 1. The 1915 liquor Bill was amended to incorporate stricter penal provisions, including death sentence, for manufacturers and distributors of illicit liquor in the event of a hooch tragedy.In a rare show of solidarity, all MLAs including Speaker Vijay Kumar Choudhary, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar rose from their seats and resolved that they wont drink and would discourage others from doing so. Deputy CM Tejashwi Prasad Yadav and Health Minister Tej Pratap Yadav were not present in the House.The CM said: “Our experts decided to make the provisions stricter… But we have also taken a humanitarian view with the compensation provision for a victim of hooch tragedy”.

Microsoft isnt just content to work on a universal Skype app -- it has much bigger plans in store. Its developing a version of Skype for HoloLens that, as youd expect, lets you chat and collaborate with friends using the augmented reality headset. Its exact functionality isnt clear yet, but the allure is clear: you can hold a hands-free video chat while youre walking around the room. Needless to say, thats helpful if youre working on a group project or have your hands full with other tasks. Dont worry if you cant drop $3,000 on a HoloLens unit to try it out, though, as theres plenty coming for regular users.The team is bringing artificial intelligence to Skype in a big way. Youll have access to the Cortana personal assistant on Android, iOS and Windows, to begin with. Its much like Facebooks M and other conversational helpers: you can ask her to send directions, order food, or even connect to other bots (such as, say, customer service). Support for chat bots is being woven into Skype itself, on that note, so companies can serve you through AI messaging when its convenient. You should have access to bots in Skype today, and theres a bot developer kit to help programmers get started.

New Delhi, Mar 30 (PTI) Hindustan Zinc Ltd (HZL) today announced that it will pay Rs 10,141 crore as dividend, which includes Rs 3,000 crore to the government, to its shareholders for the 2015-16 fiscal, the highest by any private company. In 2002-03, the government sold its 64.92 per cent stake in HZL to mining baron Anil Agarwal-led Vednata Resources, while retaining 29.54 per cent."The actual dividend is Rs 10,141 crore and when dividend tax is included it will go to Rs 12,205 crore. This is the highest ever dividend announced by a private company. From the dividend announced today, Rs 3,000 crore would be paid to the government," HZL CEO Sunil Duggal told PTI.He informed that the firms Board has declared a special golden jubilee dividend at the rate of 1200 per cent -- Rs 24 per equity share of Rs 2 each -- for 2015-16 fiscal."Since 2002 (disinvestment of HZL), the firm has paid Rs 32,500 crore to the government in terms of royalties, direct and indirect taxes, dividend distribution tax, etc. And if the dividend tax on dividend announced today is included, this contribution would go up to Rs 34,500 crore," Duggal added.

The Indian Institute of Technology Patna (IIT-P) organised the First International Symposium on Fifth Generation (5G) technology. The symposium commenced on 29 March 2016 and will conclude on 31 March 2016 in Patna.The Patna 5G Summit is co-sponsored by IEEE Communications Society, Center for TeleInfrastruktur, Aalborg University (CTIF), Global ICT Standardization Forum for India (GISFI) and IEEE Kolkata Section.The aim of the symposium is to bring academia, industry, government organizations etc. to participate and share their research intuition and views over the possible 5G technologies, standardization aspects, heterogeneous networks, architectural designs, wireless techniques and new hardware designs.During the symposium, Union Communications and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad announced that IIT-P along with IIT Bombay, IIT Madras and Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore will be a part of innovation and research for 5G technology in India.

Public sector lender Dena Bank has raised Rs 65 crore by issuing over 2 crore shares to LIC  on preferential basis. Andhra Bank also said it has sold over 4.23 per cent stake to LIC on a preferential allotment, without disclosing the amount. Post the acquisition of additional shares in Dena Bank, LICs stake in the lender has gone up to 14.5 per cent from 11.63 per cent earlier, Dena Bank said in a regulatory filing on Wednesday."Upon receipt of funds from LIC, the Issue Committee of the Board of Bank at its meeting held on March 30, has allotted 2,16,76,267 equity shares of Rs 10 each at a premium of Rs 19.92 per share amounting to Rs 64.86 crore to LIC of India, on preferential basis", the bank said.Post the allotment, governments shareholding has decreased to 62.89 per cent from existing 65 per cent, it said. The banks scrip was trading at Rs 29.05, up 2.47 per cent, on BSE.Meanwhile, Andhra Bank said it has sold over 4.23 per cent stake equivalent to 28,853,210 shares to LIC on a preferential allotment. The price per unit at which Andhra Bank sold shares to LIC was not provided. After the additional stake buy in Andhra Bank, LIC holds more than 14.39 per cent in the lender, from earlier over 10.15 per cent. Shares of the Andhra Bank were trading at Rs 51.70, up 3.50 per cent, on BSE. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Belgian counterpart Charles Michel on Wednesday remotely launched Asias biggest optical telescope, the Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (Aries) thats located in India and built with Belgian assistance."Prime Minister Michel and I have just activated, remotely, Indias largest optical telescope," Prime Minister Modi said after launching the telescope with a 3.6-metre-wide primary mirror located at Devasthal near Nainital in Uttarakhand."Even sky is not the limit," the Prime Minister said, referring to the cooperation between the two countries on various projects.Aries, the largest optical telescope of its kind in Asia, is a product of Indo-Belgian collaboration. It will be used to study star structures and magnetic field structures of stars."This product of Indo-Belgian collaboration is an inspiring example of what our partnership can achieve," said Prime Minister Modi, who was flanked by Belgian Prime Minister Michel."The work is also afoot on other agreements in the areas of Information and Communication Technology, audio-visual production Tourism biotechnology and shipping and ports," said PM Modi, who arrived here today on a hectic day-long visit."Aries project is not just a government-to-government initiative," the Prime Minister said after the activation.

Wipro Limited announced the appointment of Patrick Dupuis, an experienced financial and business strategist, recognized for driving cultural and operational transformation at scale, to its Board of Directors as an Independent Director, effective April 1, 2016. He is currently Senior Vice President for Simplicity, Quality and Productivity at Global technology platform and payments leader, PayPal Holdings, Inc. where his role is to continuously identify and pursue opportunities to simplify and optimize processes across the business. Welcoming Dupuis to the Board, Azim Premji, Chairman, Wipro Limited said, "He brings with him a combination of financial acumen and a deep understanding of driving cultural and operational transformation. I am confident Wipro will immensely benefit from his experience." Commenting on his appointment, Dupuis, who will also be a member of the Strategy Committee of the Board, said, "I am delighted and privileged to be invited to join the Board of Wipro Ltd., a company widely respected, as much for its business excellence as for its unflinching commitment to values. I look forward to contributing to the Company as it prepares for its next phase of growth."

Coming into the World T20 semi-final today, India and West indies have a 2-2 head-to-head record in T20Is, while the record in World T20s is 2-1 in favour of the Windies. In the four matches, Rohit Sharma was the highest scorer for India with 98 runs (combined) and Chris Gayle was the highest run-getter for the Caribbeans with 154 (combined).

China has successfully launched 22nd new generation satellite into space as part of its domestic BeiDou Navigation System (BDS). It was launched using Long March-3A carrier rocket from Xichang Satellite Launch Center located in the south-western province of Sichuan. It was the 225th launch of the Long March carrier rocket. About BeiDou Navigation System (BNS) BNS is 2nd generation of the Chinese navigational system seen as rival to the USs Global Positioning System (GPS). BeiDou is Mandarin means magnetic Compass which was one of the Chinese major invention in the history which had revolutionized the sea voyages.

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