Today Current Affairs 10th March 2017

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The Ford Foundation appointed Pradeep Nair as regional director for India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.As regional director, Nair will guide the foundation’s operations out of New Delhi. He will assume his new position at the end of March, succeeding David Hulse.As India country director of the US-based Institute for Sustainable Communities, Nair established the organisation’s India office and was helped build strong relationships with the Indian government, the private sector and NGO communities across Asia.Nair holds an MBA in finance from Karnataka University, an engineering degree in electronics from Bharathiar University and has also studied filmmaking. Key Facts About Ford Foundation:The Ford Foundation is a New York headquartered, globally oriented private foundation with the mission of advancing human welfare.Created in 1936 by Edsel Ford and Henry FordPresident: Darren Walker Headquarters: New York City, New York, United States Founded: 15 January 1936 Chief investment officer: Eric Doppstadt COO: John W. Bernstein

India and Belgium on 9 March 2017 signed a protocol that amends the existing agreement and protocol between the two countries for Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income. The protocol was signed in New Delhi.The signed protocol will help the Union Government in its fight against the black money that is stashed in the offshore accounts. Fight against the black money has been a key priority area of the Union Government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. India, Kazakhstan signed protocol to amend Double Taxation Avoidance Convention Key Highlights of the Protocol:It broadens the scope of the existing framework for the exchange of tax-related information.It will help the government to curb tax evasion and tax avoidance between the two nations.It will also enable mutual assistance in collection of taxes.

Donald Tusk on 9 March 2017 was appointed to a second term as President of the European Council, one of the European Union’s governing bodies.Tusk won the elections despite objections from the government of his own country, Poland.Poland had argued that the decision should be delayed because of its displeasure with Tusk.However, Poland was overruled by leaders of the 27 other European Union member countries as they gathered for their spring summit meeting. It is the first time that such a decision was made without unanimity since the position was created in 2009. Who is Donald Tusk?Born on 22 April 1957, Donald Franciszek Tusk is a Polish politician and historian.He has been serving as the President of the European Council since 1 December 2014.Before that, he served as the Prime Minister of Poland from 2007 to 2014. He was the first Prime Minister to be re-elected since the fall of Communism in Poland.He is also a co-founder and chairman of the Civic Platform (Platforma Obywatelska) party.

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh today launched mobile App and website 'Mera Hunar HP', a first of its kind in the country.'Mera Hunar' is a web based platform where the skilled, semi-skilled persons can apply for various jobs as per their convenience like plumber, carpenter, mechanic, security guards, drivers, tourists guides, etc online. The platform is available both in English and Hindi.This platform will directly connect the prospective employers with the job seekers as the application, will contain the address and the phone numbers of those looking for jobs and other details as well.This will benefit those looking for daily jobs within their area. The CM appreciated the efforts of 'Mera Hunar' team and thanked CEO, Vinay Dalal for the voluntary cause for the job seekers. This would further supplement the Skill development scheme of the state government and would be of great help to those passing out fresh from Industrial Training Institutes. Information Technology Advisor, Himachal Pradesh, Gokul Butail is the brainchild behind developing and launching of the application.

Uruguay's Pablo Cuevas has won his third straight Brazil Open tennis title by defeating Albert Ramos-Vinolas of Spain 6-7 (7-3), 6-4, 6-4 in a rain-affected final.It was Cuevas' sixth ATP singles title, all of which have been on clay.The Brasil Open is a tennis tournament held annually in São Paulo, Brazil. A part of the ATP World Tour 250 series, it is one of the main events in the Brazilian tennis calendar.Pablo Gabriel Cuevas Urroz (born January 1, 1986)[1] is an Argentine-born Uruguayan professional tennis player. Cuevas won the 2008 French Open men's doubles title with Luis Horna.He has won 5 singles titles and is currently in his career-high singles ranking of World No. 19. Cuevas' career-high doubles ranking is World no. 14, which he achieved in April 2009.

IBM announced it has created the world’s smallest magnet using a single atom – and stored one bit of data on it. Currently, hard disk drives use about 100,000 atoms to store a single bit. The ability to read and write one bit on one atom creates new possibilities for developing significantly smaller and denser storage devices, that could someday, for example, enable storing the entire iTunes library of 35 million songs on a device the size of a credit card. The ability to read and write one bit on one atom may lead to developing significantly smaller and denser storage devices in future that can store the entire iTunes library of 35 million songs on a device.Scientists used a scanning tunneling microscope (STM) to build and measure isolated single-atom bits using the holmium atoms. An electrical current was used to write and read binary data (1s and 0s) on the atom.The invention can allow people and businesses to store 1,000 times more information in the same space and one day make data centers, computers and personal devices radically smaller and more powerful.

A 360-foot high (110 metres) flag post, the country's tallest, was inaugurated at the Indo-Pak Attari Border, just a stone's throw from Pakistan. Punjab Minister Anil Joshi inaugurated the country's largest flag on the tallest flag post - measuring 110 metres in length, 24 metres in width and 55 tons in weight.Built at an approximate cost of Rs. 3.50 crore, the post was a project of the Amritsar Improvement Trust Authority of the Punjab Government.The flag post, installed at the border, became an attraction for thousands of tourists who had reached there to watch the Beating Retreat Ceremony during the sunset.At present, the tallest flag mast is in Ranchi, which is 300-foot high.Amritsar city already has a 170-foot tall flag in the local Ranjit Avenue Public Park.

For better targeting of central subsidies, the government has made Aadhaar mandatory for a host of schemes under the agriculture ministry, from soil health card and horticulture development to the Prime Minister’s flagship crop insurance scheme launched last year. According to the notification, farmers without an Aadhaar number have to apply for it by end of March and till that time they can avail services under by furnishing a proof of their application.

The AIADMK IT Wing has launched the first-of-its-kind women safety application in Tamil Nadu. The app is called 'Ammavin Aran' meaning 'mother's fortress'.The app was launched as a part of Women's Day celebration.The app was launched as a tribute to Jayalalithaa. Features of the app:The app will give the user details about the nearest police station and hospital along with map details and phone number. There is an in-built whistle, which can manipulate the phone speaker to create a loud noise when pressed by anyone in distress. Also, the app carries an in-built call recorder and and 'Tips' icon to provide life saving information. Know More About Tamil Nadu:Its capital and largest city is Chennai .It is the eleventh largest state in India..The bordering states are Kerala to the west, Karnataka to the north west and Andhra Pradesh to the north. To the east is the Bay of Bengal and the state encircles the union territory of Puducherry. 

The Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has launched Stage II of HCFCs Phase Out Management Plan (HPMP) for the 2017-23 period. It aims to phase out use of Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), harmful ozone-depleting substances (ODS) by switching over to non-ozone depleting and low global warming potential technologies. Under HPMP-II India has secured $44.1 million from Multilateral Fund for implementation of Montreal Protocol for phasing out 8,190 MT of HCFC consumption between 2017 to 2023 to meet targets under the protocol for 2020. More than 400 enterprises, including MSMEs in foam manufacturing sector and 6 large air-conditioning manufacturing enterprises will be supported for conversion to non-HCFC technologies from HCFCs. Energy efficiency, development building codes, cold chain development with non-HCFC alternatives and development of standards for new non-ODS and low GWP alternatives will be promoted. Adequate attention to synergize the Refrigeration and Servicing (RAC) servicing sector trainings will be given with the Skill India Mission, in order to multiply the impact of skilling and training. Nearly, 16, 000 service technicians will be trained under HPMP-II. It will result in net direct CO2-equivalent emission reductions of about 8.5 million metric tonne annually from 2023.

INS Tillanchang, a Water Jet Fast Attack Craft (WJFAC) was commissioned into the Indian Navy, at Karwar on 9 March 2017. It was commissioned by Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Western Naval Command.NS Tillanchang is the third ship of four follow-on WJFAC built by the Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) Kolkata. The ship has been indigenously designed and built and is an upgrade from the Chetlat class of Fast Attack Craft that the Indian Navy possesses.The first two ships of the class, INS Tihayu and INS Tarmugli, were commissioned in 2016 and are based at Visakhapatnam. During the speed trail, INS Tillanchang was able to achieve the fastest speeds among all WJFACs. INS Tillanchang:INS Tillanchang is about 50m long. It is powered by three water jet propulsion system, which gives it speeds of over 35 knots.The ship is armed with 30-mm main gun and a number of light, medium and heavy machine guns to undertake operations at sea.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on 8 March 2017 launched a helpline number 181 for women in distress on the occasion of International Women's Day 2017.This toll free helpline number will be available for 24 hours in all the 30 districts of the state.The helpline will extend prompt response to women affected by violence.It will provide information about women-related government schemes and programmes and a range of other services. Women of Odisha:Around 50 lakh women have been able to raise their socio-economic condition by becoming part of the women self help groups in Odisha.More than 25 lakh women have also been benefited by about Rs 1100 crore by availing incentive through Mamata Yojana, a pregnancy related welfare scheme of the state government.Odisha government has instituted 50 per cent reservation for women in Panchayati Raj Institutions and government jobs to encourage their better participation. Odisha's Biju Kanya Ratna and Mission Shakti have also been instrumental for welfare of women and girls in the state.