Major News and Events of 15 May 2016
What Happened on 15 May 2016
Defence Minister sets target to increase Defence Exports from a paltry $330 Million to $2 Billion
Mounting Defaults make PSU Banks report Rs. 7000 Crore Loss
ISRO prepares for "Hanuman Leap" to launching Indigenous Space Shuttle
US supports India on NSG Issue, Pentagon says China increasing Troop along India Border
Clamour for CBI Probe in Rohit Vemula's Death Rise
While addressing 3-day International Vichar Maha Kumbh in Ujjain during Simhastha Maha Kumbh Mela, Prime Minister Narendra Modi released a 51-point “Simhastha Declaration” in presence of Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena. The declaration contains guiding principles that seek betterment of human life. During his speech, PM Modi asked the audience to look within and find out prospects of growth. He also pointed out how “imperialism” is increasing conflict and went on to blame “holier than thou” attitude for the problems. Prime Minister pointed out inherent conflict management skills of India, asked 13 religious bodies to “talk of Moksha” by including “atheists and irreligious people” in the discussion, and focus on environmental and girl child empowerment issues.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has set a target of increasing defence exports of India from a paltry $330 million to $2 billion in the coming 2 years. He also assured of looking into the concerns related to forging strategic partnership in critical sector. Parrikar took pot-shot at defence players for objecting to proposed strategic partnerships by saying that the reason of objection is their realisation of not making it through the “window”, set on the basis of the report submitted by ex-DRDO chief VK Aatre. Defence Minister also pointed out that in the last 1 year itself, defence export has doubled from $140-150 million to over $330 billion.
Reports say, 6 public sector banks have reported an aggregate loss of Rs. 7000 crore, among which the biggest loser is Bank of Baroda (Rs. 3230 crore). Only one bank that reported marginal profit is Union Bank of India, which earned a profit of Rs. 97 crore in the 4th quarter. Poor performance of the PSU banks dragged down the BSE Bankex index by 1.25 per cent, with biggest losers in the banking sector being PNB, Kotak Mahindra, ICICI Bank, and SBI.
Science and Technology
Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (Thiruvananthapuram), K Sivan, said Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has already started to take “first baby steps towards the big Hanuman leap” in launching its indigenous space shuttle. He went on to say that the launch of their full made-in-India winged “Reusable Launch Vehicle - Technology Demonstrator (RLV-TD)” will be launched pretty soon from Andhra Pradesh’s Sriharikota spaceport. This space vehicle can glide back to a virtual runway in Bay of Bengal with its delta wings.
With China blocking India’s bid to the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), US has come forward in support of India. US State Department Spokesman John Kirby said India is ready for the coveted entry as it meets the missile technology control regime criteria for entering NSG, thereby reasserting President Barack Obama’s reaffirmation on NSG during his India visit in 2015. US deputy assistant secretary of defence for East Asia Abraham Denmark said that Chinese military is increasing its capability as well as force posture along Indo-China border.
Raju Kumar Sahu, General Secretary of Hyderabad Central University Students' Union (HCUSU) has demanded CBI enquiry in PhD scholar and Dalit student activist Rohit Vehmula’s untimely death. Sahu has recently severed ties with Student Federation of India (SFI), student’s organisation of CPIM, by highlighting "opportunistic political agenda and divisive ideology”. He has also demanded CBI enquiry to find out the person(s) who struck off the 5 sentences in Rohit’s suicide note that was critical of SFI and Ambedkar Students' Association (ASA).