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2013 - September 26 to 30 - Current Affairs


External Affairs Ministers of G-4 nations (Brazil, Germany, Japan and India) passed resolution on need for United Nations Security Council (UNSC) reforms on 26 September 2013 on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly. 

The ministers stressed for the need for UNSC reforms to make it more representative, efficient and transparent. These reforms enable the UNSC to deal international challenges more efficiently. 

The Ministers also stressed the need to intensify efforts to translate the existing agreement into concrete outcomes by 2015. 

About Group 4(G-4) nations: The Group 4 or G-4 nations is group of 4 contries.G-4 includes Brazil, Germany, India, and Japan. These countries formed group to demand permanent seats in United Nations Security Council. 

About United Nations Security Council (UNSC): 

• Under the Unite Nations Charter, United Nations Security Council primary responsible for the maintenance of international peace and security. 

• The council is composed of 15 members. Among 15 members five are permanent and ten non-permanent members elected for two-year terms by the General Assembly. 

• Five permanent members are China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States 

• The Security Council takes the lead in determining the existence of a threat to the peace or act of aggression. 

• It calls upon the parties to a dispute to settle it by peaceful means and recommends methods of adjustment or terms of settlement. 

• In some cases, the Security Council can resort to imposing sanctions or even authorize the use of force to maintain or restore international peace and security. 

Ukraine on 26 September 2013 announced that it entered into the natural gas production-sharing agreement with a consortium which was led by Exxon and Shell. This will help Ukraine towards energy diversification as well as reduced dependence on Russia. The consortium also included Petrom, the Romanian energy group as well as Ukraine's state-owned Nadra Ukrainy. 

Nadra Ukrainy will be responsible for extraction of natural gas on the Skifski site near the Ukraine's Black Sea coast. The initial accord was signed by the Ukrainian Energy Minister Eduard Stavytsky and representatives of Exxon, Shell, and Petrom on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York. 

The formal production-sharing agreement will be signed by October 2013 in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. Skifski is situated in the north-west part of the Black Sea, near Romania. It is expected that Skifski will provide 8-10 billion cubic metres of natural gas annually. 

The agreement will help Ukraine in diversification of its energy sources. The Shell and Exxon deal was a result of the recent moves by Ukraine to attract European Union as well as retract from Russia. It is important to note that Russia threatened trade sanctions as well. Ukraine, in the meanwhile, may also sign the association agreement with the EU in November 2013. 

Iraq Government on 27 September 2013 ratified the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) at 68th session of UN General Assembly at New York, US. Iraq's ratification of the treaty raised the number of countries that have adhered fully to the treaty to 161. To enter into force, the CTBT must be signed and ratified by 44 specific states, only 36 of which have done so including France, Russia and Britain. 

The remaining eight are China, the United States, India, Pakistan and North Korea; Israel, widely believed to have atomic weapons; Iran, suspected of wanting them; and Egypt. 

About Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT): The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly as a resolution (A/RES/50/245) on 10 September 1996. 

The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) bans nuclear explosions by everyone, everywhere: on the Earth's surface, in the atmosphere, underwater and underground. So far 183 States have signed the Treaty of which 161 have now also ratified it. 

The Treaty establishes a CTBT Organization (CTBTO), located in Vienna, Austria to ensure the implementation of its provisions, including those provisions for international verification measures.

World Tourism Day observed on 27 September 2013 across the world to bring awareness about the importance of tourism. The purpose of this day is to raise awareness on the role of tourism within the international community and to demonstrate how it affects social, cultural, political and economic values worldwide. 

Theme for 2013: Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future. This year’s theme highlights tourism’s role in water access and shines a spotlight on the actions currently being taken by the sector in order to contribute to a more sustainable water future, as well as the challenges ahead. As the most widely celebrated global day for tourism, the day represents a unique opportunity to raise awareness of tourism’s role in water access and shine a spotlight on the sector’s contribution to a more sustainable water future. 

Background: World Tourism Day was first celebrated in 1980 by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation. The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) decided in September 1979 to institute World Tourism Day, which was first celebrated on 27 September 1980. 27 September was chosen as the date for World Tourism Day because that date coincided with an important milestone in world tourism: the anniversary of the adoption of the UNWTO Statutes on 27 September 1970. 

World Rabies Day observed on 28 September 2013 across the world to raise awareness about the impact of rabies disease and to deliver the message that rabies is preventable. 

The theme for the year 2013 is Rabies: Understand it to defeat it. World Rabies Day is an initiative of Global Alliance for Rabies Control and the day started it in 2007 to create a global opportunity for people to focus on rabies prevention. The World Rabies Day is observed each year on 28 September- on the death anniversary of Louis Pasteur who developed the first efficacious rabies vaccine with his colleagues. The day aims to raise awareness about the impact of rabies on human beings and animals, and provide information on how to prevent the disease. 

About Rabies: Rabies is a viral disease that causes acute encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) in warm-blooded animals. The disease is zoonotic, meaning it can be transmitted from one species to another, such as from dogs to humans, commonly by a bite from an infected animal. The rabies virus infects the central nervous system, ultimately causing disease in the brain and death. 

Every year on 29 September celebrated as the World Heart Day since 1999. The World Heart Day is organised by World Heart Federation. 

The theme of the 2013 World Heart Day: A life course approach to the prevention and control of cardiovascular disease (CVD) with a focus on women and children because healthy children lead to healthy adults and healthy adults lead to healthy families and communities. 

About The World Heart Federation: 

• The World Heart Federation is dedicated to leading the global fight against cardiovascular disease (CVD) – including heart disease and stroke - with a focus on low- and middle-income countries, via a united community of more than 200 member organizations. 

• It aligns its efforts around the World Health Organization’s (WHO) related target of reducing premature cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality of 25 percent by 2025.


According to report released on 12 September 2013 by United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) the global Infant Mortality rate (IMR) decreased from 61 deaths in 1990 to 37 deaths in 2011. Annual infant deaths declined from 8.4 million in 1990 to 5 million in 2011. 

Report on India: 

According to the report India’s infant mortality rate shown a minor decline in 2012 compared to 2011. Infant Mortality rate decreased from 44 deaths for every 1000 live births in 2011 to 42 deaths for every 1000 live in 2012. 

According to latest report released by Register General of India data the following are the highlights of the report: 

• Kerala is good performing state in India with IMR of 12. 

• Assam stood at worst in India with IMR 55.The performance of West Bengal is also not good. The IMR of West Bengal is stood at 32. 

•States like Uttar Pradesh and Odisha improved well .IMR declined from 57 in 2011 to 53 in 2012 in both states. 

• Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu showed a one-point decline. • Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir improved their IMR by two points. 

• Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Delhi and Karnataka improved their IMR by three points. 

Main causes for High IMR in India: The main causes for high infant mortality rate in India are low awareness of health and reproductive rights, maternal anemia and the burden of malnutrition. 
About Infant Mortality rate (IMR): Infant mortality rate (IMR) is the number of deaths of children less than one year of age per 1000 live births. 

The Department of Posts, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology of India allotted Customized Pin Code to the Supreme Court of India for the first time on 26 September 2013. 

The Customized Pin Code of the Supreme Court is 110 201. The event took place on the occasion that marked the completion of 41 years of the introduction of Pin Code in the country. 

The PIN was introduced on 15 August 1972 in India. The Department of Posts also started a Locality Based Online Pin Code Search Directory of Delhi on this occasion for the first time in India. 

About Postal Index Number (PIN): 

• Postal Index Number (PIN) or PIN Code is a 6 digit code of Post Office numbering used by India Post. 

• The PIN was introduced on 15 August 1972. 

• There are 9 PIN regions in the country. 

• The first 8 are geographical regions. 

• The digit 9 is reserved for the Army Postal Service. 

The first digit indicates one of the regions. The first 2 digits together indicate the sub region or one of the postal circles. The first 3 digits together indicate a sorting / revenue district. The last 3 digits refer to the delivery Post Office. 

Union Ministry of Tourism on 27 September 2013 launched - 777 Days of Incredible Indian Himalayas - campaign to promote virgin peaks of Himalayas and make India a favoured tourist destination. The campaign is aimed at attracting more foreign tourists for round the year and reminding the world that a major part of the Himalayan range is in India. Minister of State for Tourism K.Chiranjeevi launched the 777 days of Incredible Indian Himalayas campaign in New Delhi to mark the World Tourism Day- 27 September. The Ministry of Tourism also decided to meet 50 percent of Peak fee chargeable by Indian Mountaineering Foundation from the climbing expeditions during the period of 777 days of the campaign. 

Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI) is collaborating with the Ministry in the campaign and has designed special adventure programmes for 777 days. ATOAI would organise trekking, river rafting, Himalayan run, mountain and bike events as part of this campaign. The campaign also invoked six Himalayan states including Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh for promoting Himalayas. The 777 Days of Incredible Indian Himalayas campaign also aimed to spread awareness about the fact that 73 per cent of the Himalayan range lies in India. On this occasion, Union Tourism Minister K. Chiranjeevi launched two new promotional films -Greatest Show on Earth and Life Altering Journey on Himalayas - along with a map of the Himalayas. 

The National Green Tribunal on 28 September 2013 banned digging of earth across India for making bricks and roads without prior environment clearance. A bench headed by Justice P Jyothimani directed the Chief Secretaries of all states and union territories to ensure that its interim order is adhered to. 

The tribunal issued notice to Uttar Pradesh seeking its response on a plea to direct the state government to stop extraction of earth for making bricks and roads, allegedly going on in violation of a Supreme Court decision and directions of the Environment Ministry to all states. The ban on brick earth mining comes one-and-a-half months after the National Green Tribunal banned sand mining from river beds, without environment clearance, across the country. 

National Green Tribunal (NGT):

The National Green Tribunal has been established on 18 October 2010 under the National Green Tribunal Act 2010 for effective and expeditious disposal of cases relating to environmental protection and conservation of forests and other natural resources including enforcement of any legal right relating to environment and giving relief and compensation for damages to persons and property and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. 

It is a specialized body equipped with the necessary expertise to handle environmental disputes involving multi-disciplinary issues. The Tribunal shall not be bound by the procedure laid down under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, but shall be guided by principles of natural justice. 

The Tribunal's dedicated jurisdiction in environmental matters shall provide speedy environmental justice and help reduce the burden of litigation in the higher courts. The Tribunal is mandated to make and endeavour for disposal of applications or appeals finally within 6 months of filing of the same. 

Initially, the NGT is proposed to be set up at five places of sittings and will follow circuit procedure for making itself more accessible. New Delhi is the Principal Place of Sitting of the Tribunal and Bhopal, Pune, Kolkata and Chennai shall be the other 4 place of sitting of the Tribunal.

UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi on 29 September 2013 inaugurated Kerala's two major health schemes Arogya Kiranam and Distribution of free generic medicines in all government hospitals.

Arogya Kiranam which ensures free medical care to all children for all ailments till they attain 18 years is the state's modified version of Central Government Scheme Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK), a new national programme under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM). 

The Union Tourism Minister K Chiranjeevi revealed on 28 September 2013 that the Kanhoji Angre lighthouse off the Mumbai coast will be the new tourist attraction. The announcement was made in Mumbai by the Union Tourism Minister K Chiranjeevi along with Minister of State for Shipping Milind Deora at the Port Trust Headquarters. For this purpose, the Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Shipping also drew the plans for the development of 15 light houses across India, which will eventually become the places of tourist attraction. 

The Ministry of Tourism announced that it agreed to extend financial assistance for development of light houses as tourist attractions. In the first phase, the Kanhoji Angre Light house near Mumbai, the light house located at the Dolphin Nose Point in Visakhapatnam and the one located at the Mamallapuram (Mahabalipuram) near Chennai are being developed as pilot projects. 

Out of all these, Kanhoji Angre Light House is the only one which is located in the middle of the sea. The project for the development of Kanhoji Angre Light House includes conservation of light house and viewing gallery, conservation of fort wall, tent style accommodation, construction of jetty and passenger terminal and electrification through solar power system. 

The primary thrust is on developing the new destinations in an eco-friendly manner. The work at Kanhoji Angre Island is expected to be completed by August 2014. Development of the light-houses will not only protect national heritage, but also help evince new interest among youth about maritime history. 

Summits / conference

India's first ever Naval and Maritime Exposition and Conference, NAMEXPO 2013 concluded on 27 September 2013 at Cochin, Kerala with a demonstration and visits to Naval ships, INS Satpura, INS Kabra and INS Sudarshini. All these ships are indigenously made in Indian shipyards. 

The five-day NAMEXPO witnessed participation from 50 domestic and international exhibitors, 2000 business visitors, 15 official delegations besides 6500 general visitors. Indian Naval and Coast Guard officers and personnel and Naval officers from more than 25 countries also visited the Exposition and interacted with exhibitors and participants. 
About the event: NAMEXPO 2013 was held from 23 to 27 September 2013 at Cochin, Kerala. NAMEXPO 2013 was organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in association with Indian Navy, Kerala Government, and Union Ministries of MSME, Shipping and Earth Sciences. 
The primary objective of this expo is to make the leading experts related to the sector of maritime aware of the latest trends and techniques which will help in the expansion and recent as well as future development of this sector. The Countries which were participated in the expo are Australia, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Russia, Sweden, South Africa, Singapore, US, UK, UAE, Vietnam. 


A five-member Pakistani delegation of Indus Water Commission visited India from 22 to 25 September 2013. Mirza Asif Baig headed the Pakistan delegation team. In this regard the 109th meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission was held under Article VIII (5) of the Indus Water Treaty, 1960 in New Delhi. Pakistani delegation of Indus Water Commission visited India to discuss India’s proposed project on Chenab River basin. 

These are: Ratle (850 MW), Miyar (120 MW), Lower Kalnai (48 MW) and Pakal Dul (1000 MW) hydroelectric projects. Earlier, Pakisthan has raised questions about India’s design with regard to spillway, pondage and water intake. 

Under Article VIII (5) of the Indus Water Treaty, 1960, the Commissioners are required to meet regularly at least once a year, alternately in India and Pakistan and also when requested by either Commissioner.

As per the treaty, either side has to inform the other at least six months in advance, of any new projects to be undertaken. Consequently, India has informed Pakistan about the four projects in the Chenab basin. The 109th meeting is the first meeting held during 2013-14. 

India and Armenia held their seventh round of Foreign Office Consultations along with the sixth meeting of the Inter-Governmental Commission in New Delhi on 25-26 September 2013. Sergey D. Manassarian, Deputy Foreign Minister of Armenia and Ashok K. Kantha, Secretary (East) in the Ministry of External Affairs held wide-ranging Foreign Office level consultations on 25 September. The nations reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations. They also discussed regional and international matters and exchanged views on the current international situation. 

They expressed satisfaction at the close cooperation in international fora between the two countries. The sixth session of the India-Armenia Inter-Governmental Commission (IGC) on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technological, Cultural and Educational Cooperation was also held in New Delhi on 25-26 September 2013. 

Discussions included a review of ongoing cooperation in various fields like Information Technology, Science and Technology, Health, Development Cooperation, Tourism & Civil Aviation and Culture. Both decided to intensify bilateral efforts to implement various project related proposals. They also agreed that bilateral agreements currently under discussion would be finalized expeditiously. Both co-chairs Sergey D. Manassarian and Mr. Ashok K. Kantha signed a Protocol on the outcome of the IGC session. 

India and China held sixth Financial Dialogue in Beijing. The annual dialogue was held on 25 and 26 September 2013 ahead of Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh's proposed visit to Beijing in October 2013. During this Dialogue, the two sides held in-depth discussions on new challenges facing the global economy, macro-economic situations and policies in China and India, progress on structural reforms in both countries, cooperation under multilateral frameworks as well as bilateral financial cooperation. 

Both nations agreed to strengthen regular communication and coordination at various levels on macro-economic policies and major international economic and financial issues. Both sides agreed to strengthen regular communication and coordination at various levels on macro-economic policies and major international economic and financial issues. 

At the end of the dialogue they issued a joint statement which called for early conclusion of IMF quota reforms. The statement stated that the two nations agreed to intensify cooperation with other BRICS nations to push for reforms in international institutions. They will also work for implementation of the commitment to implement IMF Quota and Governance Reforms. 

Both nations agreed to work together to promote the implementation of the important consensus reached in the G-20 St. Petersburg summit, strengthen the momentum of global recovery, push for faster economic growth, generate better jobs, and build on the foundation for long-term growth. Both nations agreed to hold the 7th India-China Financial Dialogue in 2014 in New Delhi. 

India and United States of America (USA) signed a joint declaration on 27 September 2013 in defence cooperation in research in defence, defence technology transfer, co-development and co-production of defence articles and services and protecting each other’s sensitive technology and information.

Highlights of the Joint declaration in defence cooperation: 

• The United States and India share common security interests and place each other at the same level as their closest partners. This principle will apply with respect to defence technology transfer, trade, research, co-development and co-production for defence articles and services, including the most advanced and sophisticated technology. 

• Both countries will work to improve licensing processes, and, where applicable, follow expedited license approval processes to facilitate this cooperation. 

•The U.S and India are also committed to protecting each other’s sensitive technology and information. 

• The two sides will continue their efforts to strengthen mutual understanding of their respective procurement systems and approval processes, and to address process-related difficulties in defence trade, technology transfer and collaboration. 

• The two sides look forward to the identification of specific opportunities for cooperative and collaborative projects in advanced defence technologies and systems, within one year. Such opportunities will be pursued by both sides in accordance with their national policies and procedures, in a manner that would reflect the full potential of the relationship. 

• The U.S. continues to fully support India`s full membership in the four international export control regimes, which would further facilitate technology sharing. 

The 4th meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs was held in Beijing on 29-30 September 2013. The Indian delegation was led by Gautam Bambawale, Joint Secretary (East Asia) and comprised of representatives of the Ministries of External Affairs, Defence and Home Affairs as well as members of the Indian Army and Indo-Tibetan Border Police. 

The Chinese delegation was led by Ouyang Yujing, Director General, Department of Boundary and Oceanic Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and comprised of representatives of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and National Defence of the People’s Republic of China. 

The talks were held in a candid, constructive and forward looking atmosphere. Reviewing recent developments in the India-China border areas, especially in the Western Sector, the two nations agreed that peace and tranquility on the border is the basis for the continued expansion of India-China relations. 

To this end, both sides discussed further measures to maintain stability on the border, building on existing understandings and arrangements. The 5th meeting of the Working Mechanism will be held in India at a mutually convenient time. 

The Union Minister of Commerce & Industry Shri Anand Sharma visited Mozambique on a two-day visit from September 27-28, 2013. On September 27, Shri Sharma met the Prime Minister of Mozambique, Mr. Alberto Vaquina and discussed the bilateral historical relations between the two countries. Later, Shri Sharma met Mr. Armando Inroga, Minister of Industry and Trade of Mozambique, where they discussed bilateral cooperation and agreed on the need for further diversifying trade and investments. 

Shri Sharma said that owing to the the impressive growth in trade between the two countries, the bilateral trade could reach USD 3 billion by 2016 from the current level of USD 1.28 billion. India has been assisting Mozambique in its developmental efforts and has provided Lines of Credit of USD640 million for various projects, apart from providing other assistance, grants and technical training, university scholarships, etc. Large quantities of coal and natural gas have recently been discovered in Mozambique. 

There are various Indian companies which have acquired stakes in these coal and gas fields, particularly the recent acquisition by ONGC Videsh and Oil India Limited in the Rovuma Basin in the North of Mozambique at cost of approximately USD5 billion for the natural gas consortium led by Anadarko of the United States and planned investment of USD4 billion for setting up of integrated fertiliser plans in Mozambique.

Shri Sharma also invited Mr. Inroga to visit India for participating in the Partnership Summit scheduled to be held in Bengaluru in January, 2014. Shri Sharma also addressed a "Session on Enhancing Economic Partnership between India and Mozambique" along with Mr. Inroga which was attended by industry leaders from India and Mozambique. 


The US-based VGS Group on 25 September 2013 completed the design of its second 400 million US dollars Floating LNG Regasification Unit (FRU). It will start supplying gas to the Tamil Nadu market from 2016. 
The 400 million US dollars VGS East Coast India LNG Import Terminal would supply gas to Andhra Pradesh market, especially aiming to serve the 7-gigawatt of idling power generation capacity around Kakinada, which has not commence operations due to shortage of fuel supply.
TVGS’ floating regasification plant with ship-based storage facility, located near Kakinada Deepwater Port, has become a global trend setter in facilitating LNG supplies to consumers. The Indo-American VGS Group would link North American and Gulf Region natural gas supply with its LNG import terminals on India’s heavily industrialized, yet gas starved East Coast markets. 

The Egyptian Iron and Steel Company signed on 27 September 2013 a contact with UK-based Tata Steel Consulting, a subsidiary of Tata to boost its production levels. The Egyptian Iron and Steel Company explained that Tata Steel will provide a plan to increase production potential to reach 1.2 million tons of finished steel or 1.45 million tons of semi-finished steel annually. 

The Egyptian Iron and Steel Company largely state-owned company.It has been suffering from chronic losses in the past years, which reached 98 million US Dollar in the third quarter of the 2012-13 fiscal year. The Egyptian Iron and Steel Company get its raw materials from mines in Aswan, Upper Egypt. So, it is not exposed to the volatility of international markets. 

Aluminium giant National Aluminium Company (Nalco) posted 4.75 per cent jump in sales turnover at 6809 crore rupees in 2012-13. The rise in sales turnover was mostly attributed to higher production and sale of alumina. It has also plans for ambitious new ventures, expansion and diversification programmes. 

NALCO is pursuing with Odisha government plans to obtain Pottangi Bauxite Mines, which has a mineable reserve of about 70 million tonnes. The Nalco is also planning to set up a 5500 crore rupees greenfield Alumina Refinery in Gujarat for which Bauxite shall be supplied by Gujarat Mineral Development Corporation. 

About Nalco: Incorporated in 1981, as a public sector enterprise of the Government of India National Aluminium Company Limited (Nalco) is Asia's largest integrated aluminium complex, encompassing bauxite mining, alumina refining, aluminium smelting and casting, power generation, rail and port operations. Commissioned during 1985-87, Nalco has emerged to be a star performer in production, export of alumina and aluminium, and more significantly, in propelling a self-sustained growth. 


The Union government of India on 26 September 2013 notified GAAR (General Anti Avoidance Rules). It seeks to check tax avoidance by investors routing their funds through tax havens. It will come into effect from 1 April 2016. 
The GAAR will apply to entities availing tax benefit of at least 3 crore rupees. It will apply to foreign institutional investors, FIIs that have claimed benefits under any Double Tax Avoidance Agreement (DTAA). 
Investments made by a non-resident by way of offshore derivative instruments or P-Notes through FIIs, will not be covered by the GAAR provisions. The notification said, investments made before 30 August 2010, will not be scrutinised under GAAR. 

Reflecting deterioration in economic activities, net non-performing assets (NPAs) of all banks have increased to 1.68 per cent of the total loan at the end of 2012-13, according to the Reserve Bank of India. 

Net NPAs of all banks were 1.28 per cent at the end of 2011-12, the RBI said in report titled ‘A profile of banks: 2012-13’ Net NPAs of the 26 public sector banks, including State Bank of India (SBI), rose to 2.02 per cent during the year as compared to 1.53 per cent in the previous fiscal. SBI and its five associates recorded a net NPA of 2.04 per cent against 1.76 per cent in the comparable period. 

Net NPAs of new private sector bank rose marginally to 0.45 per cent as compared to 0.42 per cent. Tight liquidity situation resulted in increase in cost of funds of all commercial banks to 6.12 per cent as against 5.90 per cent in 2011-12. 

As far as state-owned banks were concerned, the cost of funds rose to 6.27 per cent from 6.06 per cent in 2011-12. Rise in cost of funds had its bearing on net interest margin which came down to 2.79 per cent from 2.90 per cent a year ago.


Eight eminent scientists on 26 September 2013 selected for Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award for the year 2013. The awards were announced during the 71st Foundation day of CSIR on 26 September 2013 in New Delhi. Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award is country's top most award for excellence in Science and Technology. 

The winners are: 

Biological Science: 
  • Dr Sathees Chukkurumbal Raghavan - Department of Biochemistry - Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. 
Chemical Sciences: 
  • Dr Yamuna Krishnan - National Centre for Biological Sciences - (TIFR) UAS-GKVK, Bangalore. 
Engineering Sciences: 
  • Dr Bikramjit Basu - Materials Research Centre - Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. 
  • Dr Suman Chakraborty - Department of Mechanical Engineering - Indian Institute of Technology (IITKgp), Kharagpur. 
Mathematical Sciences: 
  • Dr Eknath Prabhakar Ghate - School of Mathematical Sciences - Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai. 
Medical Sciences:
  • Dr Pushkar Sharma - National Institute of Immunology (NII), New Delhi. 
Physical Sciences:
  • Dr Amol Dighe - Department of Theoretical Physics - Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai. 
  • Dr Vijay Balakrishna Shenoy - Department of Physics - Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. 
The Shanti SwarupBhatnagar Award is the most coveted national recognition for young scientists and engineers for their R&D work done in India. The Award was instituted in 1957 in the honour of late Dr. Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar, an eminent scientist, founder Director and principal architect of CSIR. 

The award carries a cash component of five lakh rupees. It is given annually to young scientists below the age of 45 who have made outstanding contributions in any field of science and technology. 

The University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Law on 25 September 2013 presented Anna Hazare with the inaugural Allard Prize for International Integrity at Vancouver, Canada. The Allard prize is one of the world’s largest awards recognizing efforts to combat corruption and to promote human rights. 

About Allard Prize: The Allard Prize established in October 2012 by UBC Law alumnus Peter A. Allard, QC and the Allard Prize is awarded to an individual, movement or organization that has shown exceptional courage and leadership in combating corruption, especially through promoting transparency, accountability and the rule of law. The prize money for the award is 100000 US Dollars. 

About Anna Hazare: Kisan Bapat Baburao Hazare born on 15 January 1940, popularly recognized as Anna Hazare, is an Indian social activist who is particularly acknowledged for his contribution in order to the development of Ralegan Siddhi, a village in Ahmednagar district, Maharashtra, India and his efforts for establishing it as a model village, for which he was awarded the Padma Bhushan by Government of India, in 1992. He played a large part in the 2011 Indian anti-corruption movement. 

Pond's Femina Miss India World 2013 Navneet Kaur Dhillon on 27 September 2013 won the Multimedia Award at the Miss World 2013 in Indonesia.

India won this award for the second time in a row. The award was first introduced by the Miss World Organization in 2012 and India's Vanya Mishra was its first winner.

The Multimedia Award is given on the basis that how contestants presented their web section of the Miss World website and a Facebook page wherein they interact with fans through status updates, photos and videos. The contestants earn fast track points through maximum updates, interactions, likes and shares by fans and it ultimately helps the contestant win the Multimedia Award.

Navneet's active interaction with her fans, her regular updates about the experiences at the Miss World 2013 contest through self-clicked photos and videos on the assigned Facebook page were the main reasons to help her win Multimedia Award. 

Navneet also created awareness about the rare Sumatran Tiger by posting its pictures and videos. Navneet's page boasts of 120000 active fans and the posts reaches to 1000000 people a week. 

Navneet’s close competitors were Miss Thailand and Miss Nepal for the Multimedia Award. Navneet, formed partnership with Hindustan Unilever Ltd, Pureit Brand to create awareness about the importance of safe drinking water in India. This also helped her winning the award. 

Reserve Bank of India governor Raghuram Rajan was awarded on 27 September 2013 with the Fifth Deutsche Bank Prize for Financial Economics 2013. They gave this award in recognition of his macro economics research which influenced financial and macro-economic policies around the world.

Raghuram Rajan was chosen for the prize from more than 260 nominations from top universities, central banks and research centres in 37 countries. While presenting the prize Jurgen Fitschen, Co-Chairman of the Management Board explained that Raghuram Rajan revealed the relationship between the financial sector and the rest of the economy is so complex and it is not good enough to simply look at the size of the financial sector in relation to the gross domestic product (GDP), as is done so often at present. 

Jurgen Fitschen also explained that Raghuram Rajan also expected the financial crises of 2008 in 2005 three ahead of global financial crises. 

About Deutsche Bank Prize: 

• The Deutsche Bank Prize in Financial Economic honors outstanding achievements in researching globally relevant questions of financial economics and macroeconomics. 

• The Centre for Financial Studies (CFS) awards the prize bi-annually in partnership with Goethe University Frankfurt. 

• The Deutsche Bank Prize is sponsored by the Deutsche Bank Donation Fund. It carries an endowment of 50000 Euro. 

• The prize is one of the most generously endowed in the areas of financial economics and macroeconomics in Europe. 

Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani schoolgirl and education rights campaigner presented with the 2013 Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award (Harvard Humanitarian of the year) by Harvard University on 27 September 2013. 16 years old Malala received the award by Dr Allen Counter, Director of the Harvard Foundation for her contribution in promoting the education among girls. 

About Malala Yousafzai:

Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani school pupil and education activist from the town of Mingora in the Swat District of Pakistan's northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. 

Malala Yousafzai was shot in the head by a Taliban militant in October 2012 after she campaigned for girls' right to education. 

Rafiq Kathwari, an Indian-American poet on 29 September 2013 selected for 2013 Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award for the collection of his debut poems. Rafiq Kathwari is the first non-Irish person to win the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award. Rafiq Kathwari's collection of 20 unpublished poems In Another Country was selected for the coveted award amidst 112 contestants from across the world. 

About Rafiq Kathwari: 

• Rafiq Kathwari, a Kashmiri by descent has become the first non-Irish to have won the award and will recieve 1000 euros as the prize money. 

• He has translated selected Urdu poems of Alama Iqbal, creating his own version. His poems are mostly inspired by loss of innocence in Kashmir and from his mother's long time illness. 

• Rafiq Kathwari graduated from the University of Kashmir in 1969 before studying at the New York University and Columbia University. 

• Most of his working life has been spent with Ethan Allen, a large manufacturer and retailer of home furnishings based in the United States. 

• Many of his works have been in print and online in the US, Ireland and Asia. 

About Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award

The award was founded by the Patrick Kavanagh Society in 1971 to commemorate the Irish poet Patrick Kavanagh. The Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award meant for a first unpublished collection of poems in English is open to poets, born in the island of Ireland, or of Irish nationality, or long term resident in Ireland. 

The award is now in its 41st year. Previous winners include Eile√°n Ni Chuillean√°in, Paul Durcan, Thomas McCarthy, Peter Sirr, Sinead Morrissey, Conor O’Callaghan, Celia de Freine and Joseph Woods. 


Grandmaster Vidit Gujrathi won the bronze medal in the World Junior Chess Championship (U 20) after settling for a quick draw with Yu Yangyi of China in the 13th and final round that concluded at Kocaeli, Turkey on 26 September 2013. 
With Yu Yangyi winning the gold, the silver went to Alexander Ipatov of Turkey who defeated Aleksander Indjic of Serbia in the final round. With this win Vidit Gujrathi joined the list of elite Indians winning medals in the world junior champions starting from a gold medal won by world champion V Anand in 1987, gold by Harikrishna in 2004, gold by Abhijeet Gupta in 2008 and Bronze by Sahaj Grover in 2011. 
About Vidit Gujrathi: Vidit Gujrathi, born on 24 October 1994, belongs to Nashik of Maharashtra. He was former Under-14 world champion (2008). He was also three consecutive times age group National Champion (Year 2005, 2006 and 2007). Vidit also won many national and international tournaments in the under 14 category. 

India won bronze medal in the 8th Women’s Asia Cup 2013 as they defeated China 3-2 via penalty shootout in the 3rd/4th place play-off played at the National Stadium in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 27 September 2013. The two teams had ended 2-2 in the regulation time. Ritu Rani captained Indian side in the tournment, whereas Weilin Mao captained the China team. 

India had to win this tournament to qualify for the 2014 World Cup at The Hague, Holland. However, it came at the third place. Meanwhile, Japan stunned defending champions Korea 2-1 in the final to win the Asia Cup and secure a place in next year's World Cup. The 8th Women’s Hockey Asia Cup 2013 Held at Kualalumpur (Malaysia) from 21 to 27 September 2013. 

Venkat Rahul Ragala from Andhra Pradesh on 7 September 2013 won weightlifting gold at Asian youth Games in Guangzhou. He won the gold in 77 kg category. He won with a lift of 142 kg in snatch and 168 kg in clean and jerk. 

Prior to this achievement, he won three golds at the Asian Championships in Yangon and a silver at the World Youth Championships in Tashkent. Ragala’s father Madhu was also a weightlifter. He competed at national level. 

National Cricket Academy (NCA) chairman Ranjib Biswal was on 29 September 2013 appointed as chairman of the IPL during the Annual General Meeting of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) at Chennai. Prior to this appointment Ranjib Biswal was manager of the Indian Cricket team during the ICC World Cup 2011 and the ICC Champions Trophy 2013. He is also the head of Orissa Cricket Association. Ranjib Biswal was replaced Rajeev Shukla as chairman of Indian Premier League (IPL). Rajiv Shukla, who resigned at the end of his tenure. 

About Ranjib Biswal :

Ranjib Biswal (born 21 September 1970 in Cuttack, Odisha) is a former Indian cricketer. He played domestic cricket for the Odisha state. Biswal represented India in under-19 cricket, captaining the side against Pakistan in 4 test matches played in India. He retired from domestic cricket in 1997 and became an administrator and was made a member of the selection committee (representing East Zone) in 2005 under Kiran More. 

In 2006, when the committee was re-formed under Dilip Vengsarkar, Ranjib Biswal was retained for an additional term in 2006. In 2006, Ranjib Biswal was entrusted with the additional responsibility of Manager along with D Dongoankar for the India tour of West Indies in 2006. Ranjib Biswal was currently National Cricket Academy (NCA) chairman. 

Narayanaswamy Srinivasan was on 29 September 2013 re-elected as the President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for a third term at its 84th annual general meeting (AGM) held at Chennai. He was unanimously re-elected as the president of BCCI for the term of 2013-14. Other office bearers were also elected on the same day. 

Others who were elected at the 84th annual general meeting (AGM) included Sanjay Patel (honorary secretary), Anurag Thakur (joint secretary), Anirudh Chaudhry (hon treasurer), S P Bansal (vice-president - north zone): Rajeev Shukla (vice-president - central zone) Shivlal Yadav (vice-president - south zone), Ravi Savant (vice-president - west zone) and Chitrak Mitra (vice-president - east zone). However, N. Srinivasan will not assume charge of the office immediately because of the directive of the Supreme Court of India. Other office bearers will assume the charge of the office with an immediate effect. 

N. Srinivasan had taken over as the 30th BCCI President in September 2011. The election of the BCCI President is done on the rotational system where each region of the south, east, west and north holds the Chair of the President for three years time period. The Southern Region had its chance of choosing the President this time, according to the rotational system. 

Olympian Swaran Singh Virk led Indian rowers to win the Gold medal at 15th Asian Senior Rowing Championship at Luan, China on 29 September 2013. Apart from one Gold medal, India also clinched two Silver and bronze medals in the 15th Asian Senior Rowing Championship. 

The 15th Asian Senior Rowing Championship concluded on 29 September 2013. Swaran Singh Virk moved ahead of Iran and China in 7:31.88 minutes to clinch the Gold. In the meanwhile, the team of Anil Kumar, Robin P Ulahannan, Olympian Bajrang Lal Thakar, Ranjit Singh, Kapil Sharma, Mohammed Azad, Maninder Singh and Davinder Singh took 6:12.47 minutes to clinch the Silver medal at Men's Eights event. 

Also, Kapil Sharma, Mohammed Azad, Maninder Singh and Davinder Singh won the Men's Fours silver in 6:03.50 minutes. Bronze came in the Lightweight Men's Double Sculls with Sonu Laxmi Narian and Shokindar Tomar victory in 6:57.13 minutes. Apart from this, Monalisha, Dittymol Varghese, Chaoba Devim and Amusana Devi also won the Bronze in Lightweight Women's Quadruple Sculls with 7:03.33 minutes. 

In yet another category of Men's Quadruple Sculls, Rakesh Raliya, Deepak Rana, Dushyant and Olympian Manjeet Singh were at the fourth position with 6:01.03 minutes. Swaran Singh Virk finished at the sixteenth position after completing his fourth in a minor placings race in the men's single sculls event at the London Olympics. He had secured his 2012 London Games berth by winning the major qualifying event at the FISA Olympic Continental Qualification Regatta for Asia in Chung Ju, Korea. 

India defeated Malaysia 3-0 to win 3rd Under-21 Sultan of Johor Cup hockey tournament in Johor Bahru on 29 September 2013. The goals from the Indian side were scored by Amon Mirash Tirkey (22nd), Affan Yousuf (52nd) and Manpreet Singh (64th). The match was played at the Taman Daya Syadium. 

Former Junior World Champion Nikhat Zareen (54kg) won silver in the AIBA World Youth Boxing Championship held in Albena, Bulgaria on 28 September 2013. In the title clash Nikhat Zareen lost to Yunzi Yuan of China. Nikhat Zareen registered a comprehensive victory over Desire Galli from Italy in the quarters to advance to the round of four. In the semifinals, the India boxer was up against another junior world champion Viktoriya Virt of Ukraine. 

At the age of 15, Nikhat Zareen won the gold medal in flyweight division at the inaugural edition of the AIBA Women's Junior & Youth World Boxing Championship in 2011. Nikhat Zareen belongs to Andhra Pradesh. In 2013 championship Nikhat Zareen moved into the youth category and fought in the bantamweight division. The 2013 International Boxing Association (AIBA) Women's Junior and Youth World Boxing Championships held in Albena, Bulgaria from 20 to 29 September 2013. 

Persons / Appointments

Megan Young of Philippines on 28 September 2013 was crowned Miss World 2013 at the Bali Nasa Dua Convention Center in Bali, Indonesia. Miss France, Marine Lorphelin finished as the first runner-up, Miss Ghana Carranzar Naa Okailey Shooter was the second runner up. 

Megan Young won the competition after beating 130 contestants across the globe. She is 23 years old. She is a student of filmmaking. Megan was born in US and she moved to the Philippines, when she was 10. Megan wants to become a director after gaining experience and finishing her qualifications. India's Navneet Kaur Dhillon finished among the top 20 finalists but couldn’t reach final ten. She won the title of Miss Multimedia. 

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on 5 September 2013 announced former Indian cricket team captain Rahul Dravid as brand ambassador for its National Tobacco Control Campaign. The national anti-tobacco control campaign has to continue till it achieves desired results. It shows that India is committed towards tobacco control. World Health Assembly aims a target of 30 per cent relative reduction in tobacco use by 2025. 

With support from the MoHFW and World Health Organisation, Public Health Foundation of India and Health Related Information Dissemination Amongst Youth organised the International Conference on Public Health Priorities in the 21st Century: The Endgame for Tobacco from 10 September to 12 September 2013. Nearly 500 participants from over 50 nations participated in fighting the global tobacco epidemic. 

The Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI) on 26 September 2013 appointed Sundeep Sikka, Reliance MF President and Chief Executive, as its Chairman. In the meanwhile, Sandesh Kirkire, Chief Executive Officer of Kotak Asset Management Company was elected as the vice-chairman. 

The decisions of appointment were taken in annual General Body Meeting of AMFI. Both Sundeep Sikka as well as Sandesh Kirkire were unanimously elected by the AMFI and will hold their positions till 2014, i.e., up to next Annual General Meeting. Sundeep Sikka succeeds Milind Barve, Managing Director of HDFC MF. Sundeep Sikka was earlier the vice-chairman of AMFI. As per the convention of AMFI, the vice-chairman takes over as the Chairman of the organisation. 

About the Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI): 

• The Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI) is the industry association of mutual funds. 

• It interacts with SEB, the market regulator, in context with the mutual fund related issues. 

• AMFI is also representative of the industry of mutual funds to the Union Government of India, Reserve Bank of India as well as other organisations. 

• AMFI serves as the self- regulatory body for mutual funds. 

Sri Srinivasan was on 26 September 2013 sworn in as judge of the US Courts of Appeal for the District of Columbia Circuit. It is the second most powerful court of the United States. 

He is the first Indian-American to be on the bench of the US Courts of Appeal for the District of Columbia Circuit. He was administered oath of office by Justice Sandra Day O’ Connor. He is 46 years old. He was born in Chandigarh. His parents migrated to the United States in 1970s. 

He was confirmed by the US Senate by a huge 97-0 vote for this job. Srinivasan was first nominated by US President Barack Obama on 11 June 2012. On 2 January 2013 his nomination was returned to the President, due to the sine die adjournment of the Senate. On 3 January 2013, Obama re-nominated him for the same office. 

Prior to this appointment, Srinivasan was the principal deputy solicitor general of the United States. Srinivasan started his legal career by serving as a law clerk for Judge J Harvie Wilkinson on the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit from 1995 to 1996. 

Ravindra Kumar, Editor of The Statesman was elected as President of The Indian Newspaper Society for the year 2013-14 at its 74th Annual General Meeting held in Bangalore on 27 September 2013. Ravindra Kumar succeeded K N Tilak Kumar of Deccan Herald and Prajavani. 

At the meeting, Kiran B Vadodaria (Sambhaav Metro) was elected as Deputy President and P V Chandran of Grihalakshmi as Vice President. Sanjay Gupta (Dainik Jagran, Varanasi) was chosen as the honorary treasurer of INS for the year 2013-14. V Shankaran is the Secretary General of the Society. The executive committee of INS represents the current 990 members from newspapers, journals, periodicals and magazines. 

About Indian Newspaper Society (INS): 

• Indian Newspaper Society (INS) (formerly Indian and Eastern Newspaper Society) acts as the central organisation of the Press of India, an independent body authenticating circulation figures of newspapers and periodicals in India. 

• INS is an organization which plays a major role in protecting and promoting the freedom of press in India. 

• INS was founded in 1939. Its headquarters are at New Delhi. 

• INS membership comprises the owners, proprietors and publishers of print media who discusses and suggest various measures to the government regarding the problems related to the newspaper industry. 

It is a kind of pressure group which works to protect the interest of newspaper industry in particular and print media in general. 

Ruchira Kamboj was appointed as the Permanent Representative of India to UNESCO, Paris with the rank of Ambassador. The government made this announcement on 25 September 2013. She will succeed VS Oberoi. At present, Ruchira is joint secretary in Ministry of External Affairs. 


In Andhra Pradesh, a state-of-the-art advanced integration centre for the Naval Science and Technological Laboratory under DRDO was inaugurated in Visakhapatnam on 29 September 2013. With this facility torpedoes developed by this lab would be of world class in the days to come. Named as Talvar, the Electrical Heavy Weight Torpedoes (EHWT) testing lab would also serve the needs of the prestigious heavy weight torpedo Varunastra project and the future such projects to be undertaken. 
The centre was equipped with all the technical facilities required for carrying out sub-system level assembly, functional checks, system checks, preparation, balancing, pressure tests and full torpedo evaluation and would speed up the process of making of the torpedoes. The new facility was built to meet international standards at a cost of around 7.2 crore rupees in an area of 7500 sq. mts. for testing and integration of torpedoes. 



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