International Current Affairs
June 1st week 2015 current affairs
Category : International Current Affairs
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1) Beijing has imposed China’s toughest ban on indoor smoking.

  • Beijing has imposed China’s toughest ban on indoor smoking in a major step to deal with a looming health crisis.
  • Beginning, smoking will be prohibited in all indoor public places, including offices, shopping malls and airports.
2) Muslim Woman Denied Job Over Head Scarf Wins in Supreme Court in US.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of a Muslim woman who sued for discrimination after being denied a sales job at age 17 at an Abercrombie & Fitch Co(ANF.N) clothing store in Oklahoma because she wore a head scarf for religious reasons.
  • The Supreme Court had to decide whether Elauf was required to ask for a religious accommodation to allow her to wear the scarf in order for the company to be sued under the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which among other things bans employment discrimination based on religious beliefs and practices.
3) Tobacco Firms Ordered to Pay $12.5 Billion to Smokers in Canada.
  • Units of British American Tobacco, Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco ordered to pay damages to Quebec smokers.
  • British American Tobacco is the No.2 international cigarette company.
4) Taslima moves to US after threats from radicals.
  • Controversial Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen has been relocated to the US from India after death threats by Islamists radicals from her country where three secular bloggers were hacked to death.
  • Taslima has decided to leave India. For the indefinite future, to preserve her life, she will need to stay in the United States.
  1. Taslima is from Bangladesh has been living in exile since 1994 in the wake of death threats by Muslim fundamentalist outfits. She is now a citizen of Sweden.

5) India and US Signed a New 10-Year Defence Framework Pact.

  • India and the US signed a new strategically important 10-year defence framework pact envisaging joint development and manufacture of defence equipment and technology including jet engines, aircraft carrier design and construction.
  • India and the United States have finalized two project agreements for joint development of Mobile Electric Hybrid Power Sources and the Next Generation Protective suits for chemical and biological warfare Ensembles.
  • The Framework also recognises the transformative nature of the Defence Technology and Trade Initiative (DTTI).
6) India, Belarus ink 6 agreements to boost co-operation.
The signed agreements are
  • Roadmap for India-Belarus Cooperation: for strengthening bilateral relations and co-operation in the field of trade, culture and other areas.
  • Protocol to amendment: To amend the agreement between two countries for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income and on Property (Capital) of September, 1997.
  • MoU on Cooperation in the field of Standardization and Information Support: It was signed between Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and the State Committee for Standardization of the Republic of Belarus.
  • MoU for cooperation on Broadcasting: It was signed between Prasar Bharati (PB) and the National State Television and Radio Company of the Republic of Belarus (Beltele radio company).
  • MoU on Bilateral Cooperation between the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and the Ministry of Finance of Belarus.
  • MoU for Manufacturing and Marketing of Light Industry Goods (concern Bellegprom): It was signed between the Union Ministry of Textiles of India and the Belarusian State.
About Belarus:
  1. Capital: Minsk
  2. Currency: Belarusian ruble
  3. President: Alexander Lukashenko
  4. Prime Minister: Andrei Kobyakov


7) USA Freedom Act Passes.
  • The Senate passed the USA Freedom Act by 67-32, marking the first time in over thirty years that both houses of Congress have approved a bill placing real restrictions and oversight on the National Security Agency’s surveillance powers.
  • The Bill ends a system exposed by former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden. The spy agency collected and searched records of phone calls looking for terrorism leads but was not allowed to listen to their content.
  • The new law would require companies such as Verizon Communications Inc and AT&T Inc, to collect and store telephone records the same way that they do now for billing purposes.
8) India joins the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on Automatic Exchange of Information.
  • The new global standards has wide in scope and oblige the treaty partners to exchange wide range of financial information from institutions from their country. In order to implement these standards in India necessary legislative changes will be made in section 285BA of the Income Tax Act, 1961.
  • Apart from India 5 other nations including Australia, Canada, Costa Rica, Indonesia and New Zealand also have joined it. Now the total number of countries agreeing to exchange information automatically in accordance with MCAA has gone up to 60.
  • It will be also instrumental in getting information about assets of Indians held abroad and their beneficial owners. Thus, it will directly help the Government to curb tax evasion and deal with the menace of black money stashed abroad.
9) 250 laid-off at Disney, replaced with Indian H1-B workers: NYT report.
  • Entertainment firm Walt Disney has lay off about 250 employees and replaced them with Indians holding H1-B visas, raising new questions on how outsourcing companies are using the temporary visas to bring immigrants into technology jobs in the US, according to a media report.
  • H-1B immigrants work for less than American tech workers, because of weaknesses in wage regulations. The savings have been 25 per cent to 49 per cent in recent cases, he told lawmakers.

10) India and Netherlands inks several agreements.

  • Signed in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Netherland Mark Rutte in New Delhi following discussions on various issues related to the region and the world between the two leaders.
  • Agreement on setting up Joint Working Group on Counter Terrorism and Manufacturing of dredgers at the Cochin Shipyard. Measles and Rubella Vaccine in India, with transfer of technology from Netherlands.
  • Agreement on developing coastal roads and metro lines in India and setting up a Joint Working Group on Skill Development. Agreement on developing joint pilot projects for an electric vehicle ecosystem in India and setting up centres of excellence in areas like horticulture and animal husbandry in India.
  • Singapore bans Nestle’s instant noodles after rollback in India.
  • Singapore authorities have now ordered local importers to temporarily suspend of the sale of Nestle’s Maggi noodles imported from India after reports about high lead content being found in this popular instant snack in India.


11) India-Bangladesh ratify land deal, Modi announces $2 billion line of credit to Dhaka.
  • India has formalized the 40-year-old Land Boundary Agreement with Bangladesh during Prime Minister Narendra Modi`s visit to Dhaka.
  • The two nations signed a raft of agreements and India announced a “$2 billion line of credit” to Bangladesh in an effort to deepen bilateral ties.
  • Unanimously approved a Constitution Amendment Bill to give full effect to the Land Boundary Agreement of 1974 with Bangladesh and the related 2011 Protocol.
  • Under the agreement, the countries will exchange territories, with 111 enclaves being transferred to Bangladesh and 51 to India.
About Bangladesh:
  1. Capital: Dhaka
  2. Official languages: Bengali
  3. President: Abdul Hamid
  4. Prime Minister: Sheikh Hasina


12) LAC differences may stall India-China CBMs.
  • The China-India track on a possible new round of confidence-building measures (CBMs) is expected to see a contest between New Delhi’s insistence on the clarification of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and Beijing’s focus on the elaboration of a “code of conduct” among border troops.
  • Diplomatic sources that the resumption of the clarification of the LAC, which was publicly raised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his China visit last month, is one of the core objectives of the CBM process.
  • It was formally documented in the peace and tranquility accord that was signed in 1993 in the backdrop of friction such as the one caused during the wan dung incident of 1986 in Arunachal Pradesh. Neither side wanted a repeat of such an eventuality.
13) Modi, Hasina exchange 1971 memories.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s trip to Dhaka, seen as historic, brought back memories of the 1971 war of liberation.
  • Mr. Modi presented Ms. Hasina a memento depicting the helm of INS Vikrant, the Indian naval ship which played a major role in the war. He handed over an audio recording of the historic speech of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, founding father of Bangladesh, at Brigade Maidan in Kolkata on February 6, 1972, and a set of DVDs of parliamentary debates and a transcript of the Land Boundary Agreement.
  • Ms. Hasina gave Mr. Modi a photograph of the signing of the historic instrument of surrender of the 93,000 Pakistani military men to the India-Bangladesh Joint Command in Dhaka on December16, 1971. She handed over a map of the Indian Special Economic Zone in Bangladesh and a replica of the 1,320-MW Maitree Super Thermal Power Project at Rampal.
  • INS Vikrant played the most crucial part in shortening the war, cutting off the reinforcements sent from the then West Pakistan to the East.