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Daily GK Updates: 11th Sept 2014

1.    Subhash Chandra Garg appointed as World Bank ED
i. Senior IAS officer Subhash Chandra Garg was today appointed as Executive Director (ED) in World Bank.
ii. Garg, a 1983-batch IAS officer of Rajasthan cadre, will have a tenure of three years from the date of assuming charge of the post, said an order issued by the Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC).
iii. The Executive Directors are responsible for the conduct of the general operations of the World Bank and exercise all the powers delegated to them by the Boards of Governors. They also select a President who serves as Chairman of the Boards.
iv. They are responsible for International Bank for Reconstruction and Development’s loans, guarantees and policies that impact the World Bank’s general operations among others.
v. The ACC had last month approved the proposal for extension of tenure of M N Prasad, a 1972 batch IAS officer of Bihar cadre (retired), as Executive Director, World Bank till October 31.

 
2.    Govt sets up panel to review environment laws 
i. The Government has constituted a high-level committee to review various environment laws in order to bring them in line with current requirements.
ii. The four-member panel, headed by former Cabinet Secretary T S R Subramanian, has been asked to review five key green laws concerning protection and conservation of environment, forest, wildlife, water and air among others. 
iii. The committee has been set up in the backdrop of government taking serious measures to fasten the environment clearance process for achieving economic growth without compromising green issues. 
iv. "Based on experience gained in the implementation of aforesaid Acts, it has been decided to constitute a high-level committee to review these Acts and suggest appropriate amendments to bring them in line with their objectives," said a Ministry order. 

3.    Cabinet approves over Rs 5,000 crore Telecom Development Plan for NE
i. The Union Cabinet today gave its approval for implementing a comprehensive Telecom Development Plan for the North-Eastern Region. The proposal entails an estimated cost of over Rs 5,336 crore. 
ii. The project will increase the reliability of district and state headquarters connectivity by providing alternative optical fiber connectivity.
iii. It will also ensure that notwithstanding any problem in one route, the voice and data transfer through other route will keep the district and state headquarters connected. 
iv. This project is aimed to cover the remote villages in the region as also to keep seamless connectivity on national highways in the area.
4.    Gates Foundation pledges $50 million to fight Ebola epidemic
i. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged 50 million US dollars to support emergency efforts to contain West Africa's Ebola epidemic, which has already killed almost 2,300 people in the worst outbreak of the virus in history. 
ii. The US based philanthropic foundation said it would release funds immediately to UN agencies and international organisations to help them buy supplies and scale up the emergency response in affected countries.
5.    Meghalaya Governor to take additional charge of Manipur, Mizoram
i. President Pranab Mukherjee today accepted the resignation of Vinod Kumar Duggal, as the Governor of Manipur and Mizoram.
ii. A Rashtrapati Bhawan communique said, Meghalaya Governor Dr. Krishan Kant Paul has been asked to discharge the the functions of the Governor of Manipur and Mizoram, in addition to his own duties.
6.    Guj FSL to tie-up with US-based firm for ballistic testing
i. Gujarat Forensic Science Laboratory, which provides services to various companies for testing of armour panels and bullet-proof jackets, is likely to soon tie-up with a US-based firm to share best practices in the field of ballistic testing. 
ii. The Gandhinagar-based FSL has it own ballistic testing centre where it tests products for Indian Army and now it is also providing this service to private defence companies and is also in touch with other companies to test their products.
iii. "We, here in Gujarat FSL, have conducted tests for US-headquartered company DuPont for their products like Kevlar and Tensylon which are being used as ballistic-proof jackets and ballistic-panels used in armoured vehicles," FSL's deputy director H P Sanghvi said.
iv. Upbeat by the experience with the FSL, DuPont is eyeing better ties with the local lab in the form of an 'agreement'. 

v. Elaborating further, the official said, "DuPont made Kevlar brand fibre is extensively used by military and police organisations across the world for making bullet resistant jackets and helmets."
vi. "DuPont has recently introduced Ultra High Modulus Polyethylene brand TensylonT for hard armour panels," he added. 
7.    India, B'desh sign MoU on traditional medicine
i. Bangladesh and India have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for enhanced cooperation in the fields of traditional medicine like Ayurveda and Unani, as World Health Organisation decided to lay an extra focus on the issue as an "important part of healthcare" in the region.
ii. The two countries inked the deal in Dhaka late Tuesday on the sidelines of the WHO's South-East Asia regional conference where the traditional medicine was one of the major issues of discussion of the 11 health ministers, experts and officials.
iii. Bangladesh's health officials said under the deal the two sides agreed to exchange all kinds of traditional medicines alongside the experts and physicians for conducting training.
iv. They said recognised institutions of both the countries would provide scholarships to each other in addition to setting up an 'academic chair'.
8.    India successfully test-fires nuclear-capable Agni-I missile
i. India today successfully test-fired indigenously developed nuclear-capable surface-to-surface Agni-I missile from Wheeler Island off Odisha coast. 
ii. The single-stage, solid-fueled missile was launched at 11.11 this morning from launch pad complex number - 4 as part of a user trial by the Strategic Force Command of the Indian Army. 
iii. The ballistic missile has a striking range of 700 to 1250 km. It can carry a one-tonne nuclear warhead. 
iv. Agni-I was developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) missile technologists.

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