Malabar naval exercise begins
- US, Japanese and Indian navies have began Malabar Naval Exercise-2017 in Bay of Bengal, off the Chennai coast.
- Aim of this exercise is to increase inter-operability amongst the 3 navies as well as develop common understanding for maritime security operations.
- 16 warships including the world’s largest aircraft carrier USS Nimitz, more than 95 aircraft and 2 submarines are joining the drill.
Merger of Ministries
- Government has merged the urban development and housing and urban poverty alleviation ministries.
- It will now be known as Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA).
- This is third time the ministries have been merged. With this merger, the government now has 51 ministries.
- The merger will create synergy, better coordination and planning between housing and urban infrastructure projects.
International meet on social justice
- A 3 day Babasaheb B.R. Ambedkar international conference on social justice will be held in Bengaluru from July 21 to 23.
- Conference will unveil ‘Bengaluru Declaration’ outlining specific constitutional, institutional and policy responses to concerns of equity, freedom and democracy.
- It also commemorates the 126th birth anniversary of the architect of Indian Constitution, B.R. Ambedkar.
No non-veg food on domestic flights
- The national carrier Air India has stopped serving non-vegetarian meals to economy-class passengers on all domestic flights from mid-June this year.
- However, non-vegetarian meals would continue to be served in business and executive class on domestic as well as international flights.
- The decision was taken to cut wastage and cost, and to avoid mix-up of vegetarian with non-vegetarian meals.
Bharti Airtel launches Project Next
- Bharti Airtel has launched “Project Next” to deliver all services across touch points in a seamless digital way.
- The company plans to invest up to Rs 2000 crore over the next 3 years under the new project to launch new digital innovations.
- Under the project, Airtel has launched a new version of MyAirtel App that makes the entire customer experience real time.
Citizenship for Myanmar Rohingyas
- UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi has called for granting citizenship to Myanmar’s Muslim Rohingya minority.
- Grandi said granting citizenship is very crucial for achieving peace and development in the Rakhine state.
- The Rohingya have long been denied citizenship, freedom of movement and basic rights in Myanmar, where they are often seen as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
Iraq declares victory over ISIS
- Iraq’s prime minister, Haider al-Abadi, has declared victory over Islamic State forces in Mosul after months-long of bitter fighting.
- The city had been the last major urban stronghold Isis held in Iraq, and defeat there pushes the group back towards its insurgent roots.
- Victory in Mosul is still both a strategic and symbolic milestone for Iraqi fighters backed by US-led coalition forces.
Apple to build second data center
- Apple will build its 2nd data center in southern Denmark which will be powered entirely by renewable energy.
- It is due to begin operations in 2019, will power Apple’s online services, including iTunes Store, App Store, iMessage, Maps and Siri for customers across Europe.
- Apple will invest around $920 million in the project.
- The first data center in Denmark will begin operations this year.
Okinoshima gets World Heritage status
- A sacred island in south-west Japan “Okinoshima” has been declared a UNESCO world heritage site.
- Women are banned on the islands while men have to take off their clothes and undergo a cleansing ritual before setting foot on the island. Only 200 visitors are allowed each year.
- Okinoshima is home to the Okitsu shrine, built in the 17th century to pray for the safety of sailors.
GST intelligence agency gets new chief
- Senior bureaucrat John Joseph has been appointed as the Director General of Goods and Services Tax Intelligence (DG GSTI).
- Joseph is a 1983 batch officer of IRS, has worked in Finance Ministry’s important departments, including the DRI.
- DG GSTI is the new name given to Directorate General of Central Excise Intelligence, mandated to check service tax and central excise duty evasion.
Paperless banking services
- Nepal SBI Bank, a subsidiary of SBI has launched its fully automatic digital banking services in Kathmandu.
- Customers can avail the services from SBI Intouch Bank.
- This is for the first time the SBI has expanded the paperless banking system outside India.
- Paperless banking service has been launched to target potential younger customers who are exposed to digital technology.
Raninder Singh re-elected NRAI president
- Raninder Singh has been re-elected as president of the National Rifle Association of India for another 4 year term.
- He defeated Shyam Singh Yadav, president of Uttar Pradesh Rifle Association with an overwhelming 89-1 margin.
- He is an active trap shooter and has participated in ISSF World Cups and National Championships.
- Raninder is the son of Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh.
ASEAN countries for 2018 Republic Day
- Centre is planning to invite leaders of 10 ASEAN nations for the Republic Day parade next year.
- It is being seen as a major step towards the govt’s ‘Act East’ policy.
- India & ASEAN are marking 25 years of dialogue partnership this year.
- Move is particularly significant considering India’s current relationship with China. At least 4 of 10 ASEAN nations are involved in South China Sea dispute
Free Surgery Scheme
- Delhiites who are unable to have surgeries at any govt hospital can now get free surgery in 48 private hospitals bill of which will be paid by Delhi govt.
- Govt would facilitate 52 specified surgeries free of cost at private hospitals.
- If a patient doesn’t get a date for surgery at a govt hospital within 1 month, hospital would refer him to private hospitals & govt would pay all the expenses.
India tops medal tally for first time
- India have topped the medal tally for first time in the history of Asian Athletics Championships.
- India ended on top with their highest ever medal haul of 29 medals pushing China to 2nd spot with 8 gold, 7 silver & 5 bronze.
- India’s best came in 1985 Jakarta edition where they had won 22 medals.
- China finished at 2nd position followed by Kazakhstan & Iran at 3rd & 4th position respectively.
First pregnant man gives birth to girl
- Hayden Cross has become the 1st man in Britain to give birth after he put his sex transition on hold to get pregnant by a sperm donor.
- He had been living legally as a man for 3 years and was already part-way through hormone treatment to transform from a woman to a man.
- The girl was born on June 16 at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.
- First man to give birth was Thomas Beatie in the US in 2008
Naresh Chandra passes away
- Former Indian Ambassador to the United States, Naresh Chandra has passed away.
- He passed away due to multiple organ failure at Manipal Hospitals in Goa.
- Chandra had served as the Cabinet Secretary from 1990–92 and was the Indian Ambassador to the US from 1996 to 2001.
- He was awarded India’s second highest civil awards, the Padma Vibhushan, in 2007.
Youngest winner of professional event
- 14 years old amateur Atthaya Thitikul has become the youngest known winner of a professional golf tour event with victory at Ladies European Thailand Championship.
- She defeated Ana Menendez of Mexico by 2 strokes to achieve this milestone.
- She broke the previous record of Lydia Ko, who at 14 years and 8 months won her first professional event at New South Wales Open in 2012.
Wayne Rooney rejoins Everton
- Manchester United record goalscorer Wayne Rooney has rejoined Everton for an undisclosed fee after having spent 13 years at United.
- Rooney departs Manchester United as the club’s all-time leading scorer with 253 goals in all competitions.
- Rooney’s return comes as United look set to sign Everton striker Romelu Lukaku.
- Rooney moved from Everton to United for 27 million pounds in 2004.
Bottas wins Austrian Grand Prix
- Mercedes’ Formula One driver Valtteri Bottas has won the 2017 Austrian Grand Prix.
- Bottas finished ahead of Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo, who finished second and third respectively.
- Vettel continues leading the Championship with 171 points, 20 points ahead of Hamilton.
- This was the second victory of Bottas’ career.