Current Affairs or General Awareness is an important section. We hope that it will be helpful for you to answer some questions. We are giving here Current Affairs for CLAT exam for the month of April.
Suresh Kumar Reddy appointed as the First ambassador to ASEAN
i. Union Ministry of External Affairs (MoEA) appointed Suresh Kumar Reddy as India's first Ambassador to the separate Indian Mission to Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) & East Asia Summit.
ii. Presently, he is working as the Ambassador of India to Iraq.
iii. India has focused on ASEAN for the past couple of decades through its Look East Policy initiated in 1991.
iv. Asean and India have entered into a regional economic comprehensive partnership in 2011 resulting in trade worth 80 billion US dollar. At the heart of India's ASEAN initiative is connectivity and trade.
Rs 6,700-cr World Bank loan for freight corridor link
i. The World Bank has approved $1.1 billion (about Rs 6,700 crore) as the second tranche of its loan for construction of the 393-km-long electrified double line between Mughalsarai and Bhaupur sections of the eastern dedicated rail freight corridor.
ii. The loan agreement for the second phase is expected to be signed in June, an official release said.
iii. As a preparatory step, the Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation Ltd (DFCCIL), the special purpose vehicle responsible for implementing the rail freight corridor project, has already shortlisted bidders for the civil construction contract of this segment. The value of the contract is expected to be Rs 3,500-4,000 crore.
Japanese foods firm Nissin Foods appointed Gautam Sharma as India MD
i. Japanese foods firm Nissin Foods appointed Gautam Sharma as the Managing Director (MD) of its Indian arm Indo Nissin.
ii. He succeeds Yuji Tabeta. Yuji Tabeta was promoted to a senior role.
iii. He is the first non-Japanese MD of Indo Nissin. He has worked earlier as Wrigley India CEO. He quit Wrigley, the second biggest confectionery firm in India following Perfetti van Melle, in 2012, after a four-year stint.
iv. Sharma has worked with consumer goods firms such as GlaxoSmithKline, Perfetti van Melle and Gillette.
v. Nissin Foods is the maker of Top Ramen noodles. Top Ramen is India's third-largest instant noodles brand after Nestle's Maggi and ITC's Sunfeast YiPPee. It pioneered cup noodles in the country, which others like Nestle followed with its Maggi Cup-a-mania brand.
Novartis buys GSK's cancer drugs for $16 bn in three-part deal
i. Global pharma major Novartis will acquire GlaxoSmithKline plc's (GSK) cancer drugs portfolio for USD 16 billion and sell its vaccines business in return for USD 7.1 billion, apart from forming a joint venture for the consumer healthcare business in a three-part transaction.
ii. In separate statements, the two companies said they will combine Novartis' over-the-counter (OTC)) division with GSK's consumer business, creating a new world-leading consumer healthcare business with USD 10 billion in annual sales.
iii. UK-headquartered GSK will have majority control with an equity interest of 63.5 percent in the venture.
iv. Novartis, based in Basel, Switzerland, agreed to acquire GSK's oncology products for USD 14.5 billion and up to USD 1.5 billion contingent on a development milestone.
v. Novartis would have opt-in rights to GSK's current and future oncology R&D pipeline. On the other hand, Novartis will divest its vaccines business, excluding flu, to GSK, for USD 7.1 billion plus royalties.
vi. The joint venture of Novartis OTC and GSK Consumer Healthcare would have leading positions in four key OTC categories - wellness, oral health, nutrition and skin health, the companies said.
Arvind Kejriwal pips Narendra Modi, wins Time's poll for 100 most influential people
i. Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal has won the Time magazine's readers poll of 100 Most Influential People in the world with the highest percentage of 'yes' votes.
ii. In the process, the AAP founder pushed BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi to the second spot.
iii. The poll closed yesterday and results were announced on Wednesday.
iv. The AAP chief received a total of 261,114 "yes" votes from TIME readers, while BJP's PM candidate Modi managed to get 164,572 ''yes'' votes. Modi received 166,260 "no" votes, outnumbering his total "yes" votes.
v. The poll's winner was decided by raw number of "yes" votes.
vi. Rounding off the top 10 finishers were singers Katy Perry and Justin Bieber, actors Laverne Cox, and Benedict Cumberbatch, singer Beyonce, actor Jared Leto, actor Lupita Nyong'o, singer Lady Gaga and music duo Daft Punk.
vii. Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi ranked 39th on the list.
viii. Each year, Time publishes an editor-curated list of the 100 most influential people in the world.
ix. Before the issue comes out, TIME runs an online poll where readers can cast their vote to decide where politicians, actors, musicians and athletes should rank on the list.
Nokia to name India-born Rajeev Suri as CEO
i. Nokia, which is set to close the sale of its phone business to Microsoft, will name Rajeev Suri as its next CEO and outline its new strategy with a focus on its networks equipment business, a newspaper said.
ii. Investors have been looking forward to hearing about Nokia's next steps since it announced the 5.4 billion euro ($7.5 billion) Microsoft deal in September.
iii. Nokia said earlier this week it expected the deal to close on Friday after the companies had agreed to modify certain deal conditions.
iv. 46-year-old Suri, born in India, has been widely considered the leading candidate for the CEO post as in recent years he has helped the network division Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN) turn profitable with a drastic restructuring plan and by ditching unprofitable businesses.
India down to 83rd spot in leveraging ICT for growth
i. A World Economic Forum report says that India has slid down to 83rd spot among 148 economies in terms of leveraging information and communications technologies for growth and well being.
ii. In 2013, it ranked 68th out of 144 countries. According to the 13th edition of the Global Information Technology Report 2014, little progress has been made in bridging the gap between the world's most networked economies and the rest of the world.
iii. Among emerging market economies, China was placed on the 62nd position, Brazil (69th), Mexico (79th) and India (83rd).
iv. WEF is an International Institution committed to improving the state of the world through public-private cooperation. It was founded in 1971.
v. The WEF will publish reports such as the Global Competitiveness Report, the Global Risks Report and the Global Gender Gap Report. And also produces landmark titles covering the environment, education, individual industries and technologies.
Lt Gen Dalbir Singh Suhag's name forwarded for new Army chief
i. Notwithstanding objections by BJP, the Defence Ministry is going ahead with the process of appointing the new Army Chief and has recommended the name of Vice Chief of Army Staff Lt Gen Dalbir Singh Suhag to the Prime Minister's Office
ii. The recommendation of the Defence Ministry will have to be approved by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, official sources said today.
iii. As per tradition, the government announces the name of services chiefs-designate two months before the retirement of the incumbent.
Indian-born Google+ chief Vivek Gundotra quits
i. Vivek Gundotra, chief of Google’s social networking venture Google+, is leaving the Internet company after nearly eight years.
ii. Mr. Gundotra, who was serving as the Senior Vice President (Social) at Google, announced his departure in a post on Google+, a social network that was created about three years ago.
iii. Google CEO Larry Page also praised Mr. Gundotra in his own Plus post. “Vic — thank you for a tremendous almost eight years at Google.
iv. An Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras graduate, Mr. Gundotra has also worked with Microsoft for 15 years. His duties there included promoting Microsoft’s APIs and platforms to independent developers and helping to develop a strategy for Windows Live online services.
IMF projects Nepal’s growth rate to touch 4.5%
i. The International Monetary Fund has projected Nepal’s growth rate to pick up from 3.5 per cent in 2012-2013 to 4.5 per cent in 2013-14, attributing it to the recovery in agriculture, strong services, and rising public spending underpinned by timely budget approval.
ii. Output growth is expected to pick up to around 4½ per cent in 2013-14, driven by recovery in agriculture, strong services, and rising public spending underpinned by timely budget approval,” .
iii. Inflation is projected to moderate further from recent levels but remain high, at eight per cent year-on-year.
US President Barack Obama nominated three Indian-Americans to AAPI
i. US President Barack Obama nominated three Indian-Americans to the 14-member advisory commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs). It was nominated on 24 April 2014.
ii. The Indian-Americans include
• US Air Force officer Lieutenant Colonel, Ravi Chaudhary
• Prominent community leader Shekar Narasimhan
• Popular film and television actor Maulik Pancholy
iv. Ravi Chaudhary is an Air Force officer, currently serving as Executive Officer to the Commander, Air Force District of Washington, Joint Base Andrews, Maryland.
v. Narasimhan is also a co-founder of the Emergent Institute in Bangalore, a nonprofit institution training entrepreneurs to build social ventures.
vi. Stage actor, Pancholy is widely known for playing the role of Jonathan for six seasons on NBC's award-winning series 30 Rock. Pancholy is active with a number of non-profit and social policy organisations such as Asian-Americans Advancing Justice and the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission.
Sunil Lamba likely to be Vice Chief of Navy
i. Vice Admiral Sunil Lamba, commandant of National Defence College, is expected to be appointed as Vice Chief of Naval Staff as part of a major rejig being undertaken at the top level in the maritime force.
ii. Lamba, who is in line to be the Navy chief in 2016, will be taking the position of Admiral Robin Dhowan who took over as the head of the force a week back.
iii. As part of the reshuffle, Eastern Command chief Vice Admiral Anil Chopra is expected to be moved to Mumbai-based Western Command, defence sources said.
iv. Chopra will be succeeded by Vice Admiral Satish Soni, who is heading the Southern Command, the sources.
v. The Southern Command based in Kochi is now expected to be headed by Strategic Forces Commander Vice Admiral SPS Cheema, they said.
vi. Deputy Chief of Naval Staff Pradeep Chatterjee is expected to head the tri-services Andaman and Nicobar Command in Port Blair.
vii. The reshuffle at the top level was neccessiated by the sudden exit of former chief Admiral DK Joshi and Western commander Vice Admiral Shekhar Sinha.
viii. As per seniority, Lamba is in line for being appointed as the next Navy chief in May 2016 after Dhowan's retirement.
Microsoft acquires Nokia's mobile phone business
i. Microsoft has completed its purchase of Nokia's mobile phone business for 5.44bn euros ($7.5bn; £4.5bn).
ii. The deal between the two firms should have been completed earlier this year but it was delayed by a hold up in regulatory approvals.
iii. "Today we welcome the Nokia devices and services business to our family," said Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella.
iv. The Finnish company will now focus on networks, mapping services and technology development and licences.
v. Two Nokia plants will remain outside the deal - a manufacturing unit in Chennai, India, subject to an asset freeze by Indian tax authorities, and the Masan plant in South Korea, which it plans to shut down.
vi. Former Nokia chief executive Stephen Elop has become executive vice president of the Microsoft devices group, in charge of Lumia smartphones and tablets, Nokia mobile phones, Xbox hardware, Microsoft Surface, and Perceptive Pixel (PPI) products.
vii. The sale will see the end of production of mobile phones by Nokia.
viii. Nokia, which had the tagline 'Connecting People', has been one of the most trusted brands in India, according to Nielsen consumer rankings.
President confers Padma awards
i. President Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday presented Padma awards to 56 distinguished personalities including actor Paresh Rawal, ace tennis player Leander Paes and author Ruskin Bond.
ii. Cricketer Yuvraj Singh, eminent writer Anita Desai and noted painter Sunil Das could not make it to the ceremony
iii. The President presented one Padma Vibhushan, eleven Padma Bhushan and forty-four Padma Shri awards today at the ceremony held at Rashtrapati Bhavan, President's Secretariat said.
iv. Renowned yoga guru Bellur Krishnamachar Sundaraja Iyenger, who took the ancient Indian exercises to modern world making them a global phenomenon, was conferred the Padma Vibhushan which is the highest honour in the Padma awards.
RBI promotes three PCGMs to ED position
i. The Reserve Bank of India has promoted NS Vishwanathan, US Paliwal and Chandan Sinha as Executive Directors.
ii. Prior to their elevation, they were Principal Chief General Managers. As PCGM, Vishwanathan was heading the Department of Non-banking Supervision, US Paliwal (Human Resources Department) and Chandan Sinha (Department of Banking Operations and Development).
iii. Following the new appointments, the central bank now has nine Executive Directors. Meanwhile, Friday was the last day in office for KC Chakrabarty as Deputy Governor.
Obama in first Malaysia visit by US leader since 1966
i. US President Barack Obama arrives on Saturday in Malaysia hoping to energize aloof ties with a Muslim-majority nation whose government is under the microscope for wide allegations of abuse of power and the loss of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
ii. After stops in Japan and South Korea, Obama becomes the first serving US President to visit Malaysia since Lyndon Johnson in 1966 as he tours Asia to fortify alliances amid concern over China's rise and push his troubled plans for a Pacific-wide trade pact.
iii. US-Malaysian relations remain coloured by bickering during the 1981-2003 tenure of authoritarian leader Mahathir Mohamad, a harsh critic of US policies, though trade ties have remained solid.
iv. Obama will tread a fine line between courting Najib and acknowledging the huge numbers in multi-cultural Malaysia who are fed up with the corruption-plagued coalition in power for 57 years.
Former Barcelona coach Vilanova dies at 45
i. Tito Vilanova, the coach who succeeded Pep Guardiola at Barcelona and won the Spanish league title in his only season in charge, died Friday following a long battle with throat cancer. He was 45.
ii. Vilanova, who has battled a recurring tumour in a saliva gland, was admitted to a local hospital in Barcelona last week. He reportedly had emergency surgery on Thursday.
iii. Barcelona star Lionel Messi said that is was a “moment of profound pain for Vilanova’s family, and also for Barcelona and its fans.”
iv. Vilanova will also be remembered for his role in a brawl in the 2010 Spanish Super Cup won by Barcelona, when Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho poked him in the eye.
v. Vilanova is survived by his wife, Montse Chaure, and two children. His son Adrian is currently in Barcelona’s youth academy.
Sindhu settles for bronze in Asian Championship
i. India’s teen sensation P V Sindhu had to settle for a bronze medal after her gallant fight against top seed Shixian Wang of China ended in a narrow three-game defeat in the semifinals of the Asian Badminton Championship today.
ii. The 18-year-old fought hard for one hour and 18 minutes before losing to the two-time reinging All England champion Shixian 21-15 20-22 12-21 in the women’s singles competition.
iii. India ace Saina Nehwal had won the bronze in 2010 Asian Championship in New Delhi.
BCCI recommends Ravichandran Ashwin for Arjuna Award
i. Off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, who won the Cricket Board's Polly Umrigar Trophy best player award in 2012-13 season, has been recommended by the BCCI for the Government's prestigious Arjuna Award this year.
ii. The cricketer to get the Arjuna Award was Virat Kohli last year. A total of 46 cricketers, including women, have been conferred the sporting honour.
iii. Ashwin, who is also a useful batsman, has taken 104 wickets in Tests, 106 in 79 ODIs and 25 wickets in the same number of T20 internationals
Akash test fired successfully
i. India on Saturday successfully conducted two rounds of trials of its indigenously developed surface-to-air Akash missile as part of a user trial by the air force from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur near Balasore in Odisha.
ii. Akash is a medium range surface-to-air anti-aircraft defence system developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) as part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme.
iii. It has the capability to target aircraft up to 30 km away and is packed with a battery that can track and attack several targets simultaneously, they said.
iv. With the capability to neutralise aerial targets like fighter jets, cruise missiles and air-to-surface missiles, defence experts compare Akash to the MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile system of USA.