Current Affairs, News & Facts of 01 Sep 2015

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  • Rajiv Mehrishi takes over as Union Home Secretary

     

    Rajiv Mehrishi takes over as Union Home Secretary

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    • IAS officer Rajiv Mehrishi, who was to retire on Monday, has been appointed as the Union Home Secretary, replacing L C Goyal whose tenure abruptly ended 17  months before the completion of his two-year tenure.
    • Rajiv Mehrishi is a 1978-batch Rajasthan cadre IAS officer, was serving as Economic Affairs Secretary in the Finance Ministry  took over the charge as Union Home Secretary, for a period of two years with effect from 31st Aug 2015.
    • The decision came after Prime Minister approved the request of  L C Goyal, a 1979-batch IAS officer from Kerala cadre who was seeking Voluntary Retirement from government service with immediate effect due to personal reasons. L C Goyal's  tenure has ended 17 months before the completion of his two-year tenure.
    • It should be noted that Mr Goyal took over in February from Anil Goswami, who  was sacked after he allegedly tried to prevent the CBI from arresting former Union Minister Matang Sinh in connection with the Saradha chit fund scam, a Ponzi scam that bankrupted lakhs of small investors in Bengal.

    Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC), which consists of the Prime Minister and Home Minister Rajnath Singh cleared another bureaucratic reshuffle, appointing 15 additional secretary-rank officers and 20 joint secretary-level officers. As part of this exercise, a Gujarat cadre IPS officer Praveen Sinha was appointed as additional secretary to the Central Vigilance Commission.

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  • Manipur assembly passes Protection of Manipur People Bill, 2015

     

    Manipur assembly passes Protection of Manipur People Bill, 2015

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    Manipur Legislative Assembly has unanimously passed the Protection of Manipur People Bill, 2015 along with other two amendment bills to protect indigenous people of state. The bills were passed by voice vote. Other two bills are :-

    • Manipur Land Revenue and Land Reforms (7th amendment) Bill, 2015 
    • Manipur Shops and Establishments (Second Amendment) Bill, 2015

    The state government also adopted a resolution relating to the "Peace Accord" signed by the Government of India and NSCN(I-M).

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  • Punjab leads rooftop solar power output

     

    Punjab leads rooftop solar power output

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    Punjab Government has bagged the top position in the country  for achieving highest capacity addition in grid connected solar rooftop power generation during the 2014-15 financial year while Chandigarh took the second spot in the same category.

    Chandigarh also got second position in the country for constructing a green building for installing renewable power applications - Paryavaran Bhawan in Sector 19.

    The award ceremony will be held at Bengaluru on Thursday where Punjab Energy Development Authority (Peda) will receive the award for Punjab while Chandigarh Renewal Energy and Science and Technology Promotion Society (Crest) will represent the UT at the ceremony. 

    It is one of 5 awards won by Punjab New and Renewable Energy Department (PNRED) for outstanding performance in the various fields of Renewable Energy and Power Generation.The other four areas in which Punjab won awards includes:-

    • Highest capacity addition of off-grid waste to energy plants. 
    • Deployment of highest cumulative numbers of Solar Water Pumps. 
    • Achieving highest cumulative grid connected solar rooftop power capacity. 
    • Achieving highest capacity addition in grid connected solar power in the country.

    In Punjab Acme solar power is planning for hiring agriculture land and setting up roof over the land. While exotic vegetable cultivation would be done on the land, the roof would be used for solar power production

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  • Centre releases Rs 2,000 crore for pension scheme

     

    Centre releases Rs 2,000 crore for pension scheme

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    • Union government has released Rs 2,000 crore to the Employees' Pension Scheme as its contribution for the year 2015-16. This contribution is in addition to the Rs 250 crore contributed by the government as grant-in-aid in the Employees' Pension Scheme, 1995 for providing minimum pension of Rs 1,000 to pensioners under the scheme
    • The contribution of central government is calculated at the rate of 1.16 percent of the monthly wages of the members contributing to the scheme.This is in addition to the funding by the employers covered under the Employees' Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952, contributing 8.33 percent of the monthly wages of the members of the scheme.
    • It should be noted that in September 2015, Government had assured EPS pensioners a guaranteed minimum pension of Rs 1,000 per month. In order to meet this assurance it was necessary for the Government to infuse additional amount as grants-in- to sustain the continuance of the minimum pension.
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  • ISIS destroys Palmyra's most famed temple "The Temple of Bel"  

     

    ISIS destroys Palmyra's most famed temple

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    • The Islamic State (IS) militant group has destroyed the most famed temple in Syria's Palmyra " Temple of Bel ". The UN training and research agency UNITAR has confirmed the destruction of the main building of the Temple of Bel as well as a row of columns in its immediate vicinity and also provided satellite images of before and after the explosion 
    • IS fighters seized the city from Syrian regime forces in May and have since attacked the city's ruins and historic sites. Recently, it executed Khaled al-As'ad, an 82-year-old man who had spent his life for preserving antiquities in Palmyra, because he refused to reveal where various irreplaceable relics had been hidden.
    • The temple of Bel was dedicated to the Palmyrene gods and was one of the best preserved parts of the site. UN's cultural arm UNESCO had described the temple as of "outstanding universal value".
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  • Horror master Wes Craven dies at 76

     

    Horror master Wes Craven dies at 76

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    Wes Craven, a master of  horror cinema who was best known for thrilling his audiences by creating  the bloody suburban slashers like "Nightmare on Elm Street" and "Scream" died on Sunday at his home in Los Angeles. He was 76.

    Wes Craven, was a prolific writer, director and editor he was best known for his work on horror films, particularly slasher films. Besides his work in horror films, Craven also directed the drama Music of the Heart, which earned Meryl Streep an Oscar nomination.

    His early days were not so easy:-

    • Craven was born in Cleveland, Ohio on Aug. 2, 1939. He earned a Master’s Degree in philosophy and writing from John Hopkins University and briefly taught as a college professor in Pennsylvania and New York. 
    • During this time, he purchased a used 16mm film camera and began making short movies. His first creative job in the film industry was as a sound editor for a post-production company in New York City
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