International News Affairs
- Today (4th July) is Independence Day of United States.
- This day commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on 4th July 1776, by the Continental Congress declaring that the thirteen American colonies regarded themselves as a new nation, the United States of America, and no longer part of the British Empire.
- President Pranab Mukherjee extended his greetings to Donald Trump’s administration and the people of America on the eve of US Independence Day.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Israel today for his three-day historical visit.
- Important Note: He is the first ever Indian Prime Minister to visit Israelin 70 years.
- Modi met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and will meet with President Reuven Rivlin.
- Modi’s three-day visit aims at commemorating 25 years of diplomatic ties between the two countries and strengthening cooperation in the areas of defence, agriculture and science and technology.
National News Affairs
- The annual buffalo racing sport ‘Kambala‘ has been legalised in Karnataka after President Pranab Mukherjee approved the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Karnataka Amendment) Ordinance, 2017
- The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) has been extended for six more months in Nagaland with effect from June 30.
- Note: The AFSPA has been in force in Nagaland for several decades.
- Delhi High Court today launched a helpline number-1888 for litigants and lawyers to provide an easy access to justice.
Science & Technology
- After successfully test-firing its first intercontinental ballistic missile on Tuesday, North Koreaclaimed that it now has missiles capable of reaching anywhere in the world.
- The missile had a trajectory of 2,800 km and landed in Japanese waters.
- Note: This is North Korea’s eleventh missile test this year and comes days before world leaders discuss disarming the country at the G20.
Books & Authors
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to write a book for the youth of the country wherein he will address issues like overcoming examination stress, keeping one’s composure and what to do after the exams.
- The book, a first-of-its-kind initiative by a serving prime minister, will be out later this year in multiple languages.
Banking, Business & Economic News
- In the first merger of commodity exchanges in the country, National Multi Commodity Exchange (NMCE) and Indian Commodity Exchange (ICEX) have announced their merger.
- The deal, which will create the country’s third largest commodities exchange, has been approved by the boards of both exchanges and is expected to be completed by December.
- ICICI Prudential has agreed to take over the life insurance business of Sahara Group’s subsidiary Sahara Life, which was shut down by insurance regulator IRDAI in June.
- The administration of Sahara Life was taken over by the regulator and it was asked to stop issuing new policies, marking the first time IRDAI took such a step in its 18-year history.
- A consortium including India’s oil and gas company ONGC has announced that it is willing to invest$11 billion in Iran to develop a natural gas field and build the infrastructure to export the fuel.
- This comes after India announced a reduction in oil imports from Iran earlier amid a deadlock over the rights to one of its gas fields.
MOUs & Agreements
- The Union Government and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have signed a $220 million loan agreementfor improving connectivity as well as transport efficiency and safety on State Highways of Rajasthan.
- Achal Kumar Joti has been appointed as the new Chief Election Commissioner (CEC).
- He will take charge after Nasim Zaidi retires on July 6.
- Tata Global Beverages Limited (TGBL) today appointed Tata Sons headN Chandrasekaran as Chairman with immediate effect.