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Current Affairs: 9th April 2015

Category : All, Current Affairs · by Apr 10th, 2015

1- India successfully test-fired nuclear-capable Dhanush missile from ship

India successfully test-fired nuclear-capable Dhanush missile from ship

Dhanush

India on 9 April 2015 successfully test fired nuclear weapons-capable Dhanush missile from a ship, off the Odisha coast. Test- The ship-based missile was launched from an Offshore Patrolling Vessel (OPV), deep inside the Bay of Bengal to test its full range. It successfully hit the target point with high degree of accuracy.

Facts about Dhanush Missile

Indigenously developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). The surface-to-surface missile is a naval variant of Prithvi missile. Capable of carrying of 500 to 1000 kilogram conventional as well as nuclear payload. It is a single-stage, liquid-propelled missile and has range of 350 km. Capable to target both land-based and sea-based targets. It gives Indian Navy capability to strike enemy targets with great precision. It should be noted that Dhanush is one of the 5 missiles developed by the DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). The previous trial of the missile was successfully conducted in November 2014.

2- Nasim Zaidi appointed as Chief Election Commissioner

Nasim Zaidi appointed as Chief Election Commissioner

Nasim Zaidi

President Pranab Mukherjee on 9 April 2015 appointed the senior most Election Commissioner (EC), Dr. Nasim Zaidi as the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC). He will succeed incumbent CEC HS Brahma, who retires on 19 April 2015 after attaining age 65. Dr Zaidi will have tenure of two years i.e. till he attains the age of 65 in July 2017.

About Dr. Nasim Zaidi

Nasim Zaidi is 1976 batch IAS officer from the Uttar Pradesh cadre. He had served as the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). He had retired from IAS as Secretary to the Union Government in Ministry of Civil Aviation in July 2012.

About Chief Election Commissioner (CEC)

As per the provisions of Article 324 of Constitution, Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners are appointed by the President. They hold office for the term of 6 years or until they attain age of 65 years, whichever is earlier. The Chief Election Commissioner can be removed from office only through impeachment by Parliament.

3- Legendary Tamil writer Jayakanthan passes away

Legendary Tamil writer Jayakanthan passes away

Jayakanthan

Legendary Tamil writer Jayakanthan passed away on 8 April 2015 in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. He was 81. He was known for charting a new course in Tamil literature with his bold and progressive works.

About Jayakanthan

Jayakanthan was born on 24 April, 1934 in Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu. He was famously known as JK among novelists and literary enthusiasts. Apart from being novelist, he was also journalist, essayist, pamphleteer, filmmaker and critic. In his entire career, he had written around 40 novels and 200 short stories. His work mostly highlighted social injustices and economic inequality. Jayakanthan’s novels Cinemavukku Pona Chithalu, Sila Nerangalil Sila Manithargal, Oru Nadigai Nadagam Paarkiral and Yaarukkaga Azhudhaan were adapted into films. He was also associated with undivided Communist Party of India (CPI). He was founder of the Indo-Russian Cultural and Friendship Society.

Awards- Sahitya Akademi Award (1972) for his Tamil novel Sila Nerangalil Sila Manithargal, Jnanpith Award (2002), Padma Bhushan (2009). Russian government had conferred Order of Friendship (2011) on him for his translation works of Russian novelist Pushkin.

4- UP government confers Sahitya Shiromani Samman on Gopal Das Neeraj

UP government confers Sahitya Shiromani Samman on Gopal Das Neeraj

Gopal Das Neeraj

Uttar Pradesh government has conferred Sahitya Shiromani Samman upon noted Hindi poet Gopal Das Neeraj. The award carrying cash prize of 21 lakh Rupees was bestowed upon Neeraj by UP Chief Akhilesh Yadav. While presenting award, CM Akhilesh Yadav also announced to give Rashtra Ratn- Sitara-e Hind award to Neeraj for his lifelong service to Hindi literature. Along with Gopal Das Neeraj, veteran Hindi litterateur Uday Pratap Singh was also conferred with Sahitya Shiromani award and cash prize of 21 lakh Rupees.

About Gopal Das Neeraj

Gopal Das Neeraj was born on January 4, 1925 in Etawah district of Uttar Pradesh. He had written poems under the pen name Neeraj. He is among the renowned poets and authors in Hindi literature and also is a famous poet of Hindi Kavi Sammelan. He also was Professor of Hindi Literature in Dharma Samaj College, Aligarh and also a chancellor of Mangalayatan University, Aligarh in Uttar Pradesh. Several of his poems have been used as songs in Hindi movies.

5- Renowned Tamil singer EM Hanifa passes away

Renowned Tamil singer EM Hanifa passes away

EM Hanifa

Renowned Tamil Muslim devotional singer EM Hanifa passed away on 9 April 2015 in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. He was 90. He was well-known for his number of devotional songs and was a leading propagandist of Dravida Munnettra Kazhagam (DMK) Party for more than five decades.

About EM Hanifa

EM Hanifa hailed from pilgrim town of Nagore in Nagapattinam district of Tamil Nadu. His voice had transcended religious lines and Iraivanidam Kaiyenthungal (look up to God he never says no) song of him was an evergreen which was liked by all crossing across religious barriers. Apart from lending his voice for religious songs he was also well-known singer for popularizing the Dravidian ideals.

Political career- He was a member of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Council (now defunct) in the early 1970s. In 2002, he had contested as a DMK Candidate from Vaniyambadi but was not able to win.

6- India and US sign MoC on Transportation

India and United States (US) have signed Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) transportation between both countries. It was signed by Union Minister of Road Transport & Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari and Anthony Foxx, US Secretary of Transportation in New Delhi.

Key facts

The MoC aims at fostering cooperative work between both nations on key issues of mutual interest for all modes of transportation, coordinating public and private sector resources and expertise to advance safe, secure, efficient and integrated transportation systems. It seeks to cover areas like urban transportation, highway transportation, safety and environmental protections. It will also cover rail transportation, fuel efficiency, vehicle and behavioral safety, intermodal transportation and maritime shipping. The MoC will enable India to make use of world’s latest technology which is available with the US for developments of waterways and multi-modal hub projects.

7- Union Government issues revised norms for disaster relief

khichdi, blog,current affairs, general,knowledge, ias, ips, civil, services, CSAT,pre, ies, general studies, GS, mains, competitive, entrance, bank, PO, IBPS  april 2015, Union Government issues revised norms for disaster relief

Union Minister of Home Affairs

Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has issued orders on revision norms with respect of the Centrally notified disasters. These disasters include tsunami, earthquake, floods, cyclones, drought, hailstorm, etc.

Facts about revised norms

Norms related to various aspects of response and preparedness like ex-gratia to the kin’s in case of loss of lives, disability and livelihoods have been revised. Permitted State governments to use upto 10% of allocation of the State Disaster Relief Fund (SDRF) on equipment. On capacity building, maximum of 5% of SDRF allocation can be spent. State Governments also can use upto 10% of their SDRF allocation on local disasters. In this case the State Executive Committees have to work out the criteria and modalities. Procedure for adjustment of available balances under SDRF is simplified while releasing assistance from the National Disaster Relief Fund (NDRF) in case of severe disasters. Automatic annual updation of the norms by reference with the movement of wholesale price index (WPI) is also enabled.

8- Union Government allows pharmaceutical companies to hike rates of 509 essential medicines

khichdi, blog,current affairs, general,knowledge, ias, ips, civil, services, CSAT,pre, ies, general studies, GS, mains, competitive, entrance, bank, PO, IBPS  april 2015, Union Government allows pharmaceutical companies to hike rates of 509 essential medicinesUnion government has allowed pharmaceutical companies to hike rates of 509 essential medicines by 3.84 per cent. The new prices will be effective from 1 April 2015. In this regard, National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has issued a notification under Drug Price Control Order (DPCO), 2013 in line with the wholesale price index of 2014. These essential medicines are used for treating various ailments like hepatitis B and C, diabetes, and cancer. Presently, Union government regulates prices of a total of 348 essential medicines based on the simple average of all medicines in a particular therapeutic segment with sales of more than 1 per cent. Union government also regulates prices of all other medicines and pharma companies are allowed to hike prices of such drugs by only up to 10 per cent in a year. DPCO, 2013 was notified by the Union government with an effect from May 2014. It has replaced the 1995 order that regulated prices of only 74 bulk drugs and covers 680 formulations.

9- India registers record production of nuclear fuel

khichdi, blog,current affairs, general,knowledge, ias, ips, civil, services, CSAT,pre, ies, general studies, GS, mains, competitive, entrance, bank, PO, IBPS  april 2015, India registers record production of nuclear fuel

Nuclear Power || India

India has registered a major milestone for the nuclear industry by producing record nuclear fuel i.e. producing over 1,252 Metric Tonne (MT) of uranium bundles. Hyderabad-based Nuclear Fuel Complex (NFC) has contributed to achieve this milestone by producing over 30 per cent more fuel compared to its 961.023 MT fuel production in 2013-14. The recorded production also has exceeded country’s annual fuel requirement of 650 MT for the Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors (PHWRs). This surplus nuclear fuel production can last for at least a few months.

Nuclear fuel production in India

Since 2008, the nuclear fuel production in the country has seen a steady increase. This increase in production has been attributed to the Indo-US nuclear deal and the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) which had simplified the process of acquiring uranium. In 2008-09, NFC had produced 226.89 MT nuclear fuel, prior to signing Indo-US nuclear deal in 2008. But after the Indo-US nuclear deal the production had increased to 600.91 MT in 2009-10. At present, India produces around 5,780 megawatts (MW) of nuclear power. Of this total power produced 4,780 MW of electricity is generated by fuel processed at the NFC.

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