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Here are today’s important headlines with key details for UPSC, SSC, IBPS and other competitive examinations.

Rafale deal: Reliance, Dassault Aviation set up joint venture

  • In a major deal for India’s private defence industry, Anil Ambani-led Reliance Group announced a joint venture with Dassault Aviation on October 3, 2016. The companies in a joint statement said, the entity will be a key player in execution of offset contract worth about 22000 crore rupees as part of the fighter jet deal. Purpose of the Joint Venture is to focus on promoting Research and development projects under the IDDM program (Indigenously Designed, Developed and Manufactured), a new initiative of India’s Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.
  • This new joint venture called Dassault Reliance Aerospace will develop major Indian programs with high levels of technology transfer to benefit the entire aerospace sector. The Joint Venture was announced by Dassault Reliance Aerospace within days of India and France signed agreement for 36 Rafale fighter jets value of 59,000 crore rupees (7.87 billion Euros). The agreement on Rafale jets was inked on September 23, 2016.

Former Portuguese PM Antonio Guterres selected to be UN Secretary-General

  • Former Prime Minister of Portuguese, Antonio Guterres on was unanimously selected by the UN Security Council as the next UN Secretary-General, on October 5, 2016. Guterres will succeed Ban Ki-moon on January 1, 2017.
  • The 15-nation Security Council’s decision will be sent, following the formal approval, to the 193-member General Assembly for final formal approval.

About Secretary-General of the United Nations

  • The Secretary-General of the United Nations is the head of the United Nations Secretariat. The Secretary-General also acts as the de facto spokesperson and leader of the United Nations. Their role is laid out by Chapter XV (Articles 97 to 101) of the United Nations Charter.
  • Article 97 under Chapter XV of the United Nations Charter states that the Secretary-General shall be the chief administrative officer of the Organization, but does not dictate their specific obligations.

Indian mountaineer Arjun Vajpai scales world’s sixth highest mountain Cho Oyu

  • Arjun Vajpai, the professional Indian mountaineer, scaled the world’s sixth highest mountain Cho Oyu on October 5, 2016. The mountain is located on the China-Nepal border at an altitude of 8188 meters above the sea level.
  • The 23-year-old reached the summit before dawn along with his sherpas namely Pasang Norbu Sherpa and Lakpa Sherpa after leaving from Camp 3 in mid-night.
  • Arjun also holds the world records as the youngest summiteer on Mt Lhotse, Mt Manaslu and Mt  Makalu. He is also the third youngest Indian to scale the Mount Everest. He scaled the highest mountain of the world in 2010 at the age of 16 years, 11 months and 18 days.

CCEA approves acquisition of 11% stake in JSC Vankorneft by ONGC Videsh

  • The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on October 5,  2016 gave its approval to an acquisition by ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL) for 11% stake in JSC Vankorneft from Rosneft Oil Company (Rosneft), Russia’s national oil company.
  • The acquisition is in line with ONGC’s stated objective of adding high quality international assets to India’s exploration and production portfolio.
  • Earlier in May 2016, OVL completed the formalities for acquisition of 15% stake in Vankorneft at a cost of 1.284 billion US dollar, which gave OVL 4.11 MMTOE.

About ONGC Videsh Ltd

  • ONGC Videsh Limited is the international arm of ONGC. It was rechristened on June 15, 1989.
  • ONGC holds 100% stake in ONGC Videsh Limited.
  • It is a Miniratna Schedule-A Central Public Sector Enterprise (CPSE) of the Government of India under the administrative control of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas.
  • In terms of reserves and production, ONGC Videsh is the second largest petroleum Company of India, next only to its parent ONGC.