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CURRENT AFFAIRS: DAYS
World Radio Day
- World Radio Day is celebrated on 13 February World Radio Day 2020 celebrates the radio as a method for teaching individuals, giving data, and promoting the opportunity of expression across cultures.
- The theme of World Radio Day 2020 is “Radio and Diversity”.
- Under the theme “radio and diversity,” UNESCO’s 2020 edition of World Radio Day will focus on radio’s responsibility as “a platform for democratic discourse.”
On 12 February, Darwin Day is celebrated
- Charles Darwin was a biologist and naturalist who is known for his theory of evolution. On 12 February, Darwin Day is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of Charles Darwin and his significant contributions in the field of science and humanity
- The Darwin day is celebrated to inspire people all over the world to reflect the importance of the scientific thinking, works, curiosity to find new things, hunger for truth etc. of Charles Darwin.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: NATIONAL
Union Cabinet approves Pesticide Management Bill 2020
- Union Cabinet has approved the Pesticide Management Bill 2020. Briefing reporters in New Delhi , Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar stated, the legislation will promote organic pesticides in the country. Major Ports Authority Bill to enhance overall efficiencies of the ports was cleared by the Cabinet.
- Cabinet has also approved changes in the Direct Tax Vivad se Vishwas Bill, 2020. The bill seeks to increase its scope to cover litigations pending in various debt recovery tribunals (DRTs).
HM Amit Shah to inaugurate Conference on Combating Drug Trafficking for BIMSTEC partner nations
- Union Home Minister Amit Shah will inaugurate a two-day Conference on Combating Drug Trafficking for BIMSTEC Partner Nations in New Delhi . The conference is being organized by Narcotics Control Bureau.
- This platform will provide an opportunity to all the member nations to deliberate on the increased threats posed by drug trafficking.
- Asian countries are increasingly being affected by drug trafficking and BIMSTEC is one of the most effective platforms to tackle this global threat.
- The BIMSTEC is a regional organization comprising seven Member States lying in the littoral and adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal – Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand besides India.
Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 amended to make arbitration process user friendly
- The Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 was amended by the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2015 in order to make arbitration process user-friendly, cost-effective and ensure speedy disposal and neutrality of arbitrators
- The Amendment Act seeks to a new Part to the Act of 1996 for the establishment and incorporation of an independent body namely, the Arbitration Council of India (ACI) for the purpose of grading of arbitral institutions and accreditation of arbitrators, etc.
- As per the Act, ACI will be headed by a Chairperson, who has been a Judge of the Supreme Court or a Chief Justice or Judge of a High Court or an eminent person, having special knowledge and experience in the conduct or administration of arbitration, to be appointed by the Centre in consultation with the Chief Justice of India.
- Besides, it will also have two Full-time Members from amongst eminent arbitration practitioners and academicians. In addition, one representative of a recognized body of commerce and industry shall be nominated on a rotational basis as a Part-time Member. The Secretary, Department of Legal Affairs, Secretary Department of Expenditure and Chief Executive Officer, ACI will be ex-officio Members.
- Section 43M of the Act provides for the Secretariat to the Council consisting of such number of officers and employees as may be prescribed by the Central Government.
NHAI to waive off FASTag cost between 15-29 Feb
- National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has decided to waive off the FASTag cost of 100 rupees for NHAI FASTag between 15th to 29th of this month.
- Road users can visit any authorized physical point-of-sale locations with a valid Registration Certificate (RC) of the vehicle and get an NHAI FASTag free of cost.
- NHAI FASTag may be purchased from all NH fee plazas, RTOs, Common Service Centres, transport hubs and petrol pumps. To search for the nearest NHAI FASTag point-of-sale locations, one may download MyFASTag App, or visit ihmcl.com or Call 1033 NH Helpline number.
- The applicable security deposit and minimum balance amount for FASTag wallet will remain unchanged. The decision is aimed at further increasing digital collection of user fee through FASTag at NH fee plazas.
- Founded: 1988
- Headquarters: New Delhi
- Chairperson: Sanjeev Ranjan
Dr Jitendra Singh launches CPGRAMS Reforms at National Workshop on e-office in New Delhi
- Minister for Personnel and Public Grievances Dr Jitendra Singh inaugurated a National Workshop on e-office in New Delhi.Dr Singh also launched the Centralized Public Grievance Redress And Monitoring System, CPGRAMS Reforms at the event.
- There has been a significant jump in the number of public grievances received against government departments as it touched the 19 lakh mark in 2019 as compared to 2 lakh such complaints in 2014.
- over 95 per cent grievances have been disposed of by the government. The Minister stated, this happened due to the better and prompt response from the government.
- He stressed that since the first day in office, the government has focused on Maximum Governance and Minimum Government. Dr Singh stated, India will celebrate the 75th year of Independence in 2022 and the focus should be on E-Governance.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: INTERNATIONAL
New educational institution built with Indian assistance inaugurated in Nepal
- A new educational institution building constructed with Government of India financial assistance for students from the economically weaker sections was inaugurated in a remote area of Gulmi district in
- The new three-storey building with Indian assistance of 5 crore rupees is part of the Chandrakot Campus under the Tribhuvan University.
- The Chandrakot Campus was established in 2008 with an aim of imparting higher education to students who are unable to pursue their higher studies due to poor economic conditions. Over 90 per cent of the students studying in the Campus are girls.
- The establishment of this campus is expected to help the economically poor and socially backward students, in particular girls’ students, who were deprived of higher education in the absence of a college in the region.
- India has been providing assistance in the development of several educational institutions in Nepal. A new school built with Indian grant of 2.4 crore rupees was inaugurated in Nuwakot district of Nepal as part of the Government of India’s post-earthquake rehabilitation programme.
- Capital: Kathmandu
- Currency: Nepalese rupee
- Prime minister: KP Sharma Oli
CURRENT AFFAIRS: BANKING AND FINANCE
Nasscom’s IT revenue grows at 7.7 per cent in FY20
- The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) projected the Indian IT sector to grow 7 per cent to reach $191 billion in FY20, with exports reaching $147 billion, and headcount addition accelerating from the previous year.
- This is a marginal improvement over its prediction of 2018, when it said that the IT sector will only grow by 6.1 per cent but the sector is still ‘cautiously optimistic’ about FY21, the industry body pointed out.
- While the global economy has been moving at a sluggish pace, Indian economy only grew at 8 per cent and exports stood at $644 billion. Citing Nasscom’s CEO survey which shows 57 per cent of CEOs expect FY21 growth to be similar or better than FY20, Keshav Murugesh, chairman of Nasscom, said the industry is ‘cautiously optimistic’ about the future growth as FY21 is facing significant uncertainties including the impact of Brexit, the US elections and the spread of the coronavirus in China.
- Increasing protectionism in the forms of data localisation and the dearth of talent in the industry also poses a major threat that could change the game plan, he noted.
- The National Association of Software and Services Companies is a trade association of Indian Information Technology and Business Process Outsourcing industry. Established in 1988, NASSCOM is a non-profit organisation. NASSCOM initiated a program called ‘10000 Startups’ in 2013.
- Chairperson: Keshav R Murugesh
- Headquarters location: New Delhi
- Founders: Dewang Mehta, Nandan Nilekani
₹2,500-crore capital boost for three state-owned general insurers approved
- The Union Cabinet gave its in-principle nod for immediate capital infusion of ₹2,500 crore in three state-owned general insurers — Oriental Insurance Company Ltd (OICL), National Insurance Company Ltd (NICL) and United India Insurance Company Ltd (UIICL).
- The capital infusion comes ahead of their proposed merger by the end of March. It may be recalled that the Budget had set aside ₹6,950 crore for recapitalisation of the three state-owned general insurers.
- The immediate release of ₹2,500 crore is in the light of the critical financial position and breach of regulatory solvency requirements of the three insurers.
- “This fund infusion is being done so that the solvency ratio of the three insurers becomes acceptable as per the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) norms,” Prakash Javadekar, Minister for Information & Broadcasting and Environment, stated.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: BUSINESS AND ECONOMY
IRCTC to launch Kashi Mahakal Express train on Feb 16
- The Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) is all set to introduce third corporate train, which will ply between Varanasi and Indore.
- The train — Kashi Mahakal Express — will be inaugurated on February 16. Its commercial run will begin from March 19, 2020.
- This superfast air-conditioned train will connect three Jyotirlinga – Omkareshwar, Mahakaleshwar and Kashi Vishwanath besides also connecting the industrial and educational hub of Indore and Bhopal.
- The train will operate thrice a week between Varanasi and Indore via Ujjain, Sant Hiradnagar, Bina, Jhansi, Kanpur, Lucknow/Prayagraj and Sultanpur.
- Kashi Mahakal Express is the third corporate passenger train being operated by IRCTC taking forward the initiative of Ministry of Railways to operate more such corporate trains in the country.
- Besides, every passenger travelling on the train will be covered with complimentary travel insurance of Rs 10 lakh during the journey.
- Kashi Mahakal Express will be the first passenger train of its own kind, which promises to be a full-service overnight journey train with high levels of onboard services complemented with exclusive optional tour packages for the passengers covering the religious, business as well as tourism sites of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.
- Head quarters: New Delhi
- Chairman and Managing Director: Mahendra Pratap Mall
Star Health launches outpatient care policy
- Private health insurer Star Health and Allied Insurance Company Ltd unveiled its Outpatient Care policy, covering consultation, tests and medical bills, among others.
- The policy is for customers in the age group of 18 to 50 years and also covers dependent children up to the age of 25 years.A maximum of six members of a family can avail the policy.
- “There are ailments that do not require in-patient hospitalisation and these come under outpatient care. Since such costs can be substantial at times, we at Star Health introduced Star Outpatient Care Insurance policy”, company Managing Director Anand Roy stated.
- The policy term is for one year, and it is available as individual and also family floater plan.
- Various plans are on offer with a sum insured options available up to Rs one lakh.
- The policy covers diagnostics, physiotherapy, pharmacy expenses as well as ophthalmic treatment arising out of any accidental injuries, the release added.
About Star Health
- Headquarters: Chennai
- Founded: 2006
- Chairman and CEO: V Jagannathan
CURRENT AFFAIRS: STATES
TN Chief Minister inaugurates SCF cricket ground near Salem
- Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswamy along with National Cricket Academy Head and Former Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid inaugurated the Salem Cricket Foundation (SCF) Ground with international standards at Kattuvepplaipatti in Vazhappadi near Salem.
- The ground has five well maintained Turf Wickets and 12 practice turf wickets, a player pavilion, press box etc. It has sight screens of International Match Dimensions.
- Later, the Chief Minister played fun cricket. He batted for the balls bowled by Rahul Dravid.
About Tamil Nadu
- Capital- Chennai
- Chief Minister- Edappadi K. Palaniswamy
- Governor- Banwarilal Purohit
- Tamil Nadu govt decides to declare Cauvery Delta Region as protected special agricultural zone.
- Tamil Nadu (TN) Assembly passed the Bills to rename ‘Tamil Nadu Fisheries University’ and ‘Tamil Nadu Music and Fine Arts University’, after the late Chief Minister and AIADMK leaderJayaram Jayalalithaa as ‘Tamil Nadu Dr.J.Jayalalithaa Fisheries University (TNJFU)’ and ‘Tamil Nadu Dr. J.Jayalalithaa Music and Fine Arts University (TNMFAU)’
- Fisheries dept, NABARD & TN govt sign 1st tripartite MoA for fisheries development fund
- Tamil Nadu bagged- Best State Award in cadaveric organ donation. The state won the award for the fifth consecutive year.
- ADB, India sign $451 million loan to strengthen Power Connectivity in Tamil Nadu.
Tamil Nadu govt schools to soon have health & wellness programme
- Students of all government & government-aided schools in state will have a structured health & wellness programme.
- This will cover several aspects ranging from emotional well-being to gender sensitivity.
- This has been drawn up by the NCERT in collaboration with UNESCO & other experts from across the country.
- It will focus on the physical & mentalhealth and well being of students & also focus on gender sensitivity, safe internet use & prevention of substance abuse among other aspects.
- The School Education Department plans to introduce one hour every week for students from classes 6 to 11 from the coming academic year for the health and wellness program.
- From each school, two teachers will be chosen as the health ambassadors and they will then take this forward to the students.
- The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations
- Headquarters: Paris, France
- Head: Audrey Azoulay
- Formation: 4 November 1946.
UP draws up rules to regulate groundwater usage, fixes fines for violations
- The Uttar Pradesh cabinet has approved the UP Groundwater (Management and Regulation) Rules – 2020, to protect and regulate the usage of groundwater after the water table dipped to alarming levels in the state, which currently has 82 overexploited, 47 critical and 151 semi-critical blocks.
- The rules provide for formation of different regulatory mechanisms at the state, district, block/village and municipal level. According to officials of the UP groundwater department, the rules have been formed after the government notified the UP Groundwater (Management & Regulation) Act, 2019, which came into force on October 2, 2019.
- The water level in Ghaziabad and Gautam Budh Nagar is declining at the annual rate of estimated one to 1.5 metres. The depletion of water level, however, depends on different conditions in different areas.
- The rules approved by the UP cabinet also provide for the levy of penalty and punishment for overuse of groundwater resources. Under the rules, different areas will be categorised as notified and non-notified and all groundwater users will have to register with the respective authorities.
- The rules also provide for capping the groundwater usage by commercial, industrial, infrastructure and bulk users and stipulate a fee on usage.
- In case of any violation, users will be penalised with fines ranging from ₹2 lakh to ₹5 lakh and/or imprisonment ranging from six months to a year, for a first offence. However, agricultural and general residential users do not come under the ambit of penalty clauses.
- A second offence would entail an imprisonment of two to five years, along with a penalty of ₹5 lakh to ₹10 lakh. A provision for imprisonment of five to seven years along with penalty of ₹10 lakh to ₹20 lakh has been made for those caught polluting/exploiting groundwater a third time.
About Uttar Pradesh (UP):
- Capital– Lucknow.
- Chief Minister- Yogi Adityanand
- Governor– Anandiben Patel.
- National Parks- Dudhwa NP.
Museum on Delhi’s art history to come up at Qila Rai Pithora
- Delhi’s new museum being set up by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) at Qila Rai Pithora, considered to be the first of the seven historical cities.
- The theme of the museum was yet to be finalised, a request for proposal (RFP) had been floated inviting ideas on the basic theme of “cities of Delhi”.
- The plan includes a curated exhibition in a refurbished building of Qila Rai Pithora, which dates back to the 11th century, and would include paintings, sculptures, prints, photographs, maps, posters, books and installations. A virtual reality lab may also be included.
- The aim of the exhibition is to inform and educate the public while providing them a critical understanding of the Capital city’s art history connecting it with its political and social history.
- Apart from Qila Rai Pithora, the other historical cities of Delhi are Siri Fort, Tughlaqabad, Jahanpanah, Firozabad, Purana Qila and Shahjahanabad over the years.
About Archaeological Survey of India (ASI)
- Founder: Alexander Cunningham
- Founded: 1861
- Headquarters location: New Delhi
- Parent organisation: Ministry of Culture, Government of India
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal to inaugurate 1st phase of East – West Metro in Kolkata
- Railway Minister Piyush Goyal will inaugurate the first phase of East – West Metro in Kolkata .
- In this phase, trains will play from Salt Lake’s sector five to Salt Lake Stadium. Passenger services will start in this 5.8 Kilometres stretches.
- The services will remain open from 8 in the morning to till 8 at night with 20 minutes frequencies of trains within six stations. Mr Goyal will also launch several other Railway projects for West Bengal from the same venue.
J&K LG Girish Chandra Murmu launches Financial Inclusion Outreach Campaign
- In Jammu and Kashmir, Lieutenant Governor Girish Chandra Murmu launched the Financial Inclusion Outreach Campaign with special focus on extending banking services to all un-banked areas.
- It also lays emphasis on opening of bank accounts for adults under Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY), promotion of RuPay Cards, enrollments under Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) and Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY), outreach for Mudra Yojna, housing and other retails loans, credit Linkage with SHGs, Rural Self-Employment Training Institutes and other skilling centres in J&K and issuance of Kisan Credit Cards to all eligible beneficiaries.
- The Lt. Governor also laid emphasis on making the insurance sector more inclusive and vibrant in J&K, which is among the lowest in the country and its expansion could change the socio-economic landscape of the region.
- He honoured four Self-Help Groups, two each financed by J&K Bank and J&K Grameen Bank besides handing over the sanction letters to ten beneficiaries from Jammu under Mudra, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, Education and Housing finance.
Singing national anthem mandatory in Maharashtra colleges from February 19
- Singing the national anthem will be made compulsory in all colleges of Maharashtra from February 19, cabinet minister Uday Samant stated. The state government will issue a notification asking colleges to begin their work with the national anthem from February 19, the birth anniversary of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, stated the technical and higher education minister.
- Considering even 50 per cent attendance in colleges, at least 15 lakh students will sing the national anthem before start of their classes. Also, the national anthem will be played at various programmes organised at college and university levels, said Samant, who was in Pune to attend review meetings related to the ministry.
- Last month, the Shiv Sena-led government had made it compulsory for school students to read out the preamble of the Constitution during morning assemblies from January 26.
- Governor: Bhagat Singh Koshyari
- Chief minister: Uddhav Thackeray
- Capital: Mumbai
CURRENT AFFAIRS: ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
CCI clears Ford-Mahindra joint venture
- The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has approved a joint venture between Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) and Ford Motor, and the transfer of the automotive business of Ford India to the joint venture.
- The proposed combination envisages the formation of a joint venture, called Ardour Automotive Pvt Ltd, between M&M and Ford Motor, and the transfer of Ford’s automotive business (except the powertrain business at Sanand, Gujarat) to the joint venture
- M&M is publicly traded on the NSE and the BSE. The Mahindra group has diversified interests across various sectors including automotive, farm equipment, agricultural products and services, smaller range power generation equipment, financial services, information technology, logistics, alternative energy, aerospace, steel processing, trading, insurance broking, real estate and infrastructure, and hospitality.
- Ford, an American automobile company, has operations in various countries such as the US, Canada, Mexico, China, the UK, Germany, Turkey, Brazil, Argentina, Australia and South Africa. Ford India is an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Ford Motor Co.
About Mahindra & Mahindra:
- Founded- 2 October 1945.
- Founders- Jagdish Chandra Mahindra, Kailash Chandra Mahindra, Malik Ghulam Muhammad.
- Headquarters- Mumbai, Maharashtra.
- Founded- 16 June 1903.
- Founder- Henry Ford.
- Headquarters- United States (US).
Adani Transmission sells 25.1 pc stake in arm AEML to QIA for Rs 3,220 cr
- Adani Transmission stated it has sold 1 per cent stake in its arm Adani Electricity Mumbai Ltd (AEML) to Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) for approximately Rs 3,220 crore.
- Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) has completed acquisition of 10 per cent stake in Adani Electricity Mumbai Ltd (AEML) from ATL (Adani Transmission Ltd) along with an investment in shareholder subordinated debt in AEML on 10 February, 2020.
- The total QIA investment in AEML is approximately Rs 3,220 crore, which includes equity consideration of approximately Rs 1,210 crore and shareholder subordinated debt of approximately Rs 2,010 crore.
- The definitive agreements for the transaction were signed on December 11, 2019, and all the requisite approvals were received subsequently.
- AEML has recently completed an investment grade, USD 1 billion bond issuance, the first by a private integrated utility from India. The issue generated significant interest from international investors.
About Adani Group:
- Headquarters: Ahmedabad
- Founder and Chairman: Gautam Adani
- Founded: 20 July 1988
CURRENT AFFAIRS: APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS
Atul Kumar Gupta is the new ICAI President
- Atul Kumar Gupta will be the new President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants (ICAI)for the year 2020-21. Nihar Niranjan Jambusaria has been elected as the Vice President of the ICAI for 2020-21. They were elected at a meeting of the central council in New Delhi
- Atul Gupta, who has served the chartered accountancy profession for about two decades, was the Vice President of ICAI for the term 2019-20. He is a commerce and a law graduate by education.
- Gupta assumes charge at the helm of ICAI when the CA profession—following blowouts in several big non banking finance companies– is faced with several challenges including huge trust deficit among corporate stakeholders, regulators and economy watchers.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: AWARDS AND HONOURS
US scientist Carl H June, Novartis CEO Narasimhan bag Genome Valley Excellence Award
- Carl H June, a scientist from the University of Pennsylvania, USA and Vasant Narasimham, CEO of Novartis will share the Genome Valley Excellence Award of BioAsia, an annual biotech and life sciences forum of Telangana Government.
- Carl H June, CAR-T Cell Therapy Pioneer, Richard W Vague Professor in Immunotherapy, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, USA has been chosen for his pioneering work in the field of immunotherapy, breakthrough research in developing CAR-T therapy for treatment of cancer and development and commercialisation of world’s first FDA-approved gene therapy.
- Vas (Vasant) Narasimhan, CEO of Novartis has been recognised for inspiring the world with the bold new vision to reimagine the pharmaceutical business including embracing digital technology and transforming healthcare, according to a release.
- Genome Valley Excellence Award was constituted in 2004 to recognise and honour eminent individuals and organisations for their exceptional contribution to Life Sciences research and public health.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SUMMITS AND CONFERENCE
Naveen Inaugurates 2nd BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise
- The second BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise-2020 (BIMSTEC DMEx-2020) hosted by National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) in Odisha.
- The three-day exercise will be held in Bhubaneswar and Puri with the theme: ‘A cultural heritage site that suffers severe damage in the Earthquake & Flooding or Storm’.
- The participants of five countries — Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Nepal are participating in this exercise.
- Meanwhile, seven countries are the members of BIMSTEC, Bhutan and Thailand are not participating in the exercise due to travel advisories issued by their governments.
- The objective of the exercise is to test the existing emergency procedures for notification, preparedness and emergency response, during a major earthquake and flood scenarios. This exercise will also provide an opportunity to enhance the coordination and cooperation involving multi-agency operations in an earthquake, flooding and storm surge.
- An exercise village has been set up at Ramchandi in Puri where simulation on aquatic disaster response with special attention to the damage to heritage site will take place as part of the exercise. This will provide real-time scenarios so that in times of disaster, a proper plan for response and coordination among member nation can be executed in multi-agency scenarios.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Ananth Technologies first Indian private firm to build foreign-owned satellites
- Hyderabad-based Ananth Technologies has signed deals to build six foreign-owned satellites in India, a first by an Indian private company. Ananth will open a facility later this month in Bengaluru, where it will build satellites weighing 50-250 kg for customers in Sweden and
- This is the first time a private firm is making satellites for global customers using the country’s low-cost base.
- The company is a supplier of systems to Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).
- The firm has expertise in providing services for satellites or operators covering all the phases of communication satellites.
- The company’s consultancy services focus on both space and ground segments of the communications satellite and include the definition of requirements up to and including orbital acceptance testing of the satellites.
NASA says it wants next generation of astronauts to walk on Moon, journey to Mars
- NASA says it wants the next generation of astronauts to walk on the Moon and journey to Mars. The US Space Agency announced that it is seeking to add its astronaut corps as part of plans to dramatically expand its crewed space missions in the coming years. The corps currently stands at 48 active personnel.
- NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine stated the agency is celebrating its 20th year of continuous presence aboard the International Space Station (ISS) in low-Earth orbit this year. NASA plans to send the first woman and next man to the Moon by
- Among the qualifications required for new astronauts would be a relevant Master’s degree, be prepared to live and work 400 kilometers above Earth on the International Space Station, and be a US citizen. From March 2, people can apply it.
Great Indian bustard, Asian elephant added to ‘facing extinction’ list
- The Asian elephant and the ‘great Indian bustard’ bird have been added to the list of migratory species that are ‘threatened with extinction’ under the 13th Convention of Parties (CoP) that will bring together 130 countries in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, where the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals under the United Nations Environment Programme will be hosted. This was stated by Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, in New Delhi.
- Ahead of the CoP, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has floated a draft Visionary Perspective Plan (2020-2030) for conservation of avian diversity, their ecosystems, habitats and landscapes in the country.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: BOOKS AND AUTHOR
Dharmendra Rai, launches his book “The Thin Mind Map Book”
- Dharmendra Rai, Mind Map & Brain Literacy Pioneer has launched his book “The Thin Mind Map Book“.
- The book is designed to make anyone an expert in mind mapping by devoting two full days to reading and doing all the experiential exercises mentioned in the book.
- He has conducted 380 plus mind map seminars in less than ten years which is a world record.
- Dharmendra Rai has trained over 1,900 startups in mind mapping. He has over 25 years of work experience in training, sales, and marketing with companies like Xerox, Morgan Stanley, Alliance Capital, and Karvy. His last position was National Sales Head in Benchmark Mutual Fund.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: DEFENCE
Surprise third American entry for Indian fighter jet deal, F 15EX in the fray
- The multi-billion dollar Indian program to acquire new fighter jets could see a third American aircraft enter the fray, with permissions being sought to offer the iconic F 15 EX to the air force for its requirement of 114 fighters that are to be produced domestically.
- The US made jet, which has made a comeback after the US Air Force placed an order for 8 which could go up to 72, will join the F/A 18 Super Hornet and the F 21 ( a variant of the F 16) that are already on offer. The more advanced F 35 has not been offered to India, with reluctance over the purchase of Russian S 400 air defence systems.
- The US Company continue to offer the F/A-18 Super Hornet to both the Indian Navy and Indian Air Force.
- The project is being taken up under the Strategic Partnership model where an Indian company will manufacture the new jets in India.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SPORTS
Chess: Koneru Humpy wins, D Harika suffers defeat in fifth round of Cairns Cup
- Players had mixed fortunes in the fifth round of the Cairns Cup Chess at St Louis in the United States with Koneru Humpy posting a win and D Harika suffering a defeat.
- World rapid champion, Humpy returned to winning ways with a superb victory against overnight leader Nana Dzagnidze with black pieces .
- Humpy is on three points after five rounds, half a point behind the leaders — Wenjun Ju and Alexandra Kosteniuk.
- Harika was beaten by Valentina Gunina in a Sicilian Closed game in 38 moves. It was Harika’s first defeat in the 10-player tournament.
ICC ODI rankings: Kohli retains top spot; Ravindra Jadeja grabs seventh position
- In Cricket, India skipper Virat Kohli continues to hold on to the top spot in the batting chart of the latest ICC ODI rankings released in Dubai. His deputy Rohit Sharma also maintains the second position.
- All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja climbed three rungs to grab the seventh position. Afghanistan’s Mohammad Nabi emerged as the new world number one all-rounder. Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal jumped to the 13th spot.
- However, speedster Jasprit Bumrah lost the top spot and was placed at the second position in bowling chart. His place has been taken over by Kiwi pacer Trent Boult. Chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav slipped to the 16th place.
DAILY CA 12TH FEB
- International Day of Women and Girls in Science- 11TH Feb
- World Unani Day-11TH Feb
- National Productivity Day is observed on 12 February
- 15 crore loans extended to women under PMMY till Jan 2020, TN tops
- Covid-2019 is official name for disease caused by new coronavirus says WHO
- Reserve Bank proposes new umbrella entity for retail payments system
- KVGB launches programme to boost entrepreneurship at polytechnics, ITI’s
- Facebook to provide digital literacy training to one lakh women in seven Indian states
- MeitY grants ₹44 lakh to 8 Warangal start-ups under TIDE scheme
- Bhupesh Baghel inaugurates Gaurela-Pendra-Marwahi as Chhattisgarh’s 28th district
- ‘Reading Mission’ launched by Haryana govt to promote reading habits among students
- UP Govt launches toll free helpline numbers for students
- Infosys to acquire US-based Simplus for $250 million to step up cloud biz
- Arvind Kejriwal to take oath as Delhi CM on February 16 at Ramlila Maidan
- Sanjay Vatsayan takes over as Eastern fleet commander
- Ducati appoints Bipul Chandra as new head of Indian operations
- New Deputy Chairman for VOC Port Trust- Bimal Kumar Jha
- Kerala to host global meet on climate change, ocean health
- India to host COP13 UN Summit on conservation of migratory birds
- India ranks 17th among countries at risk of coronavirus import
- Indian DRDO developing Pranash, a new 200km strike range ballistic missile
- Army received banned anti-aircraft ammunition worth Rs 39 crore from OFB in Aug 2015: CAG
- A book titled A Commentary and Digest on The Air, Act 1981 was released
- Gulmarg all set to host five day National Winter Games from March 7
- India’s Lalremsiami named as 2019 FIH Women’s Rising Star of Year
- Aditya Mehta & Vidya Pillai wins National Snooker Championship
- Veteran Mumbai journalist Nandu Kulkarni dies at 69
DAILY CA 13TH FEB
- World Radio Day-13TH Feb
- On 12 February, Darwin Day is celebrated
- Union Cabinet approves Pesticide Management Bill 2020
- HM Amit Shah to inaugurate Conference on Combating Drug Trafficking for BIMSTEC partner nations
- Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 amended to make arbitration process user friendly
- NHAI to waive off FASTag cost between 15-29 Feb
- Dr Jitendra Singh launches CPGRAMS Reforms at National Workshop on e-office in New Delhi
- New educational institution built with Indian assistance inaugurated in Nepal
- Nasscom’s IT revenue grows at 7 per cent in FY20
- ₹2,500-crore capital boost for three state-owned general insurers approved
- IRCTC to launch Kashi Mahakal Express train on Feb 16
- TN Chief Minister inaugurates SCF cricket ground near Salem
- Tamil Nadu govt schools to soon have health & wellness programme
- UP draws up rules to regulate groundwater usage, fixes fines for violations
- Museum on Delhi’s art history to come up at Qila Rai Pithora
- Railway Minister Piyush Goyal to inaugurate 1st phase of East – West Metro in Kolkata
- J&K LG Girish Chandra Murmu launches Financial Inclusion Outreach Campaign
- Singing national anthem mandatory in Maharashtra colleges from February 19
- CCI clears Ford-Mahindra joint venture
- Adani Transmission sells 1 pc stake in arm AEML to QIA for Rs 3,220 cr
- Atul Kumar Gupta is the new ICAI President
- US scientist Carl H June, Novartis CEO Narasimhan bag Genome Valley Excellence Award
- Naveen Inaugurates 2nd BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise
- Ananth Technologies first Indian private firm to build foreign-owned satellites
- NASA says it wants next generation of astronauts to walk on Moon, journey to Mars
- Great Indian bustard, Asian elephant added to ‘facing extinction’ list
- Dharmendra Rai, launches his book “The Thin Mind Map Book”
- Surprise third American entry for Indian fighter jet deal, F 15EX in the fray
- Chess: Koneru Humpy wins, D Harika suffers defeat in fifth round of Cairns Cup
- ICC ODI rankings: Kohli retains top spot; Ravindra Jadeja grabs seventh position