31.07.2010

Politics & the Nation
  • TRS sweeps in by-polls
    • TRS scored an emphatic victory by bagging 11 of the 12 seats from which its candidates contested. The BJP retained its Nizamabad seat, defeating D. Srinivas, the PCC President.
    • Seen largely as a referendum on the Telangana statehood demand, the by-polls were closely followed in the State of AP.
  • High Court judges retirement age to be increased
    • The Cabinet has cleared a bill to be presented to Parliament that will raise the retirement age of the HC judges to 65 from the present 62 years.
    • Last time the retirement age of the HC judges was increased from 60 to 62 years in 1963.
    • But the Opposition, particularly BJP, is demanding that the Centre should bar judges from taking up post-retirement jobs.
    • The Centre is certain to find it difficult to meet this demand. But without the Opposition's support, it will not be in a position to have the bill passed in Parliament, as it needs to be passed with two-thirds majority.
Personality
  • Dr. Sudhir Parikh
    • Eminent Indian American physician and philanthropist Dr Sudhir Parikh, who was awarded with the prestigious Padam Shri this year, has been recognized in the US Congress for his extraordinary contribution.
    • He is an acclaimed and respected allergist and immunologist working in New Jersey.
    • With the Padma Shri award, Dr Parikh becomes the only Indian American to receive the Ellis Island Medal of Honour and the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman.
    • The Ellis Island Medal is the highest civilian honour presented to a US immigrant for community and social service.
    • The Pravasi Bharatiya Samman award is the highest honour the Government of India presents to non-residents.
Finance & Economy
  • What is wrong with SKS Microfinance IPO?
    • Take a look at this story about how and why the IPO is seen as not so desirable a thing for the world of microfinance.
    • SKS was set up as a social enterprise -- a business based on the concept of doing well by doing good.
  • India's stiff telecom rules rile US, Europe & Japan vendors
    • India’s latest telecom regulations to secure the country’s mobile networks have stirred a hornet’s nest in the US, Europe and Japan.
    • The vendors complain that India’s new telecom security requirements “raise potential WTO compliance concerns, which left unchallenged could throw billions of dollars in sales and export opportunities of US companies at risk”.
    • The US business community is up in arms over India’s demand that all global telecom gear makers place their source codes and other sensitive design elements in an escrow account which can be accessed by mobile phone firms and security agencies here in case of any security threat.
    • The Indian government on Wednesday also announced that all global gear makers, such as Nokia, Siemens, Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent, which manage and maintain networks of telcos here should employ only Indian engineers for local operations while adding that these firms would be given a 24-month deadline to comply.
  • Insurers, hospitals to restore emergency cashless claims
    • State-owned insurers and corporate hospitals agreed on Friday to restore with immediate effect cashless medical claims for treatment of emergency cases.
    • This is part solution to the month-long standoff between the two sides.
    • Consumers were bearing the brunt of a decision by New India Assurance, Oriental Insurance, United India Insurance and National Insurance Company to stop cashless insurance reimbursements in a few big hospitals on July 1.
    • Health insurance claims make up for about 115% of Insurance companies' premium receipts. With operational expenses, the claims have been running into 140% for the past 4-5 years in some cases.
    • Up to 5% of India’s 1.2-billion population is estimated to be covered by mediclaim policies.
    • Nearly 70% of this demographic have signed up with state insurers.
  • India, Switzerland conclude talks to revise tax treaty
    • The government has concluded the renegotiation for widening the ambit of its tax treaty with Switzerland to access information on Swiss bank accounts, a big step towards tracing Indian money stashed away overseas.
    • The tax treaty has been amended on the lines of the OECD Model Tax Convention, which means it will not provide for roving enquiries, or fishing expeditions as they are commonly called.
    • India’s income-tax authorities will be able to access information on Swiss bank accounts of Indians more easily, but only in specific cases where they have a prima facie evidence of wrongdoing.
    • The government had approached Switzerland in April 2009 to renegotiate the DTAA to get access to information on bank accounts.
    • Switzerland has also amended tax treaties with the US, France and Italy.
  • UIDAI to help oil cos curb pilferage
    • The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) and the oil ministry have decided to co-operate in issuing unique ID numbers (Aadhaar numbers) to citizens and help oil companies in checking pilferage of subsidised cooking fuel.
    • A pilot project to distribute cooking gas and kerosene (meant for the poor) through bio-metric smart card is being executed by Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka in cooperation with UIDAI.
    • Oil marketing companies will act as registrars for the UIDAI on behalf of the ministry for implementation of the project.
International
  • India, US sign nuclear reprocessing deal
    • India and the United States have signed an agreement on the nuclear fuel reprocessing arrangements under the India-US civil nuclear deal completing another key step in implementing the landmark accord.
    • The agreement will enable reprocessing by India of US-obligated nuclear material at a new national reprocessing facility.
    • The new facility dedicated to the reprocessing of safeguarded nuclear material would be established by India under International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards.
    • In turn, it will facilitate participation by US firms in India’s expanding civil nuclear energy sector.
Astronomy
  • Mars rocks may contain evidence of life
    • Scientists have reportedly identified rocks which they claim could contain evidence of life on Mars. The rocks of Nili Fossae on Mars are almost identical to those in the Pilbara region of north-west Australia where some of the earliest evidence of life on Earth was recorded and preserved in mineral form.
Language Lessons
  • asunder: Adverb
    • If something tears or is torn asunder, it is violently separated into two or more parts or pieces.
  • fancy-schmancy
    • a high brow word for a common item

2 comments:

neeraj said...

good affort sir

please i request to change the fonts like bold it or increase the size if u could do this...

thanks

Anonymous said...

HI NEERAJ

U CAN INCREASE FONT SIZE BY ZOOMING THE PAGE.

ABHISHEK