1. IBM India appoints Karan Bajwa as Managing Director
IBM has appointed Karan Bajwa as Managing Director of its India operations with immediate effect. Bajwa succeeds Vanitha Narayanan, who has been elevated as chairman of IBM India. Bajwa, who was previously Microsoft India’s managing director, joined IBM last year as executive for strategy and transformation in the Asia-Pacific region. Bajwa takes the helm for IBM regarding sales, marketing, services and delivery operations in the India/South Asia region, including Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka.
2. Justice JS Khehar sworn in as India’s 44th Chief Justice
Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar, who led the five-judge constitution bench in the Supreme Court which had struck down the controversial National Judicial Appointments Commission Act for appointment of judges, has sworn in as the 44th Chief Justice of India. President Pranab Mukherjee administered the oath of office and secrecy to Justice Kehar at the Darbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhawan.
Justice Khehar, 64, will be the first Chief Justice from the Sikh community.
3. RBI appoints Surekha Marandi as the new Executive Director
The Reserve Bank of India has appointed Surekha Marandi as its Executive Director (ED) in place of U S Paliwal, who retired on December 31 last year. Marandi will look after Consumer Education and Protection Department, Financial Inclusion and Development Department, and Secretary’s Department.
4. India’s 1st gaming, animation institute to come up in Mumbai
Maharashtra government has decided to allot a 20-acre plot to set up India’s first training institute for gaming, visual effects, animation and comics at Film City in Mumbai. The project, a PPP between the ministry of information and broadcasting and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), will be set up and run by the Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC). The Rs 200-crore institute is expected to produce as many as 1,600 professionals in the fields of animation, visual effects, gaming and comics—sectors.
5. Government launches Swachh Bharat Survekshan 2017 in 500 cities
The Union Ministry of Urban Development launched Swachh Survekshan 2017 to rank 500 cities/towns across the country on cleanliness with a population of 1 lakh and above. The survey will be conducted by Quality Council of India (QCI) under the Swacch Bharat Abhiyan in a bid to encourage competition to improve sanitation. Swachh Survekshan 2016 had ranked 73 cities across the country and Mysore was ranked on top followed by Chandigarh. 1 lakh citizens had participated and gave their feedback.
6. Govt clears signing of agri pact with Portugal
Union Cabinet has approved the signing of an agreement between India and Portugal for cooperation in the field of agriculture and allied sectors. The agreement covers various activities which include exchange of scientific and technical information, trade in plants and plant products, exchange of information in phytosanitary issues, training programmes, seminars and visits of experts and consultants. The Group would be to monitor the implementation of the present MoU and making concrete proposals for agriculture cooperation and develop guidelines and priorities for future cooperation in the field of agriculture and allied sectors.
7. Russia sends warships to Philippines for first time
Russia has sent two warships to the Philippines in the first official navy-to-navy contact between the countries. The Russian crew will reportedly discuss and share tactics to help Philippines combat terrorism and piracy. This comes after Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte said that he wants to end military ties with the US as he wants closer ties with Russia and China.
8. Indonesia suspends military cooperation with Australia
Indonesia has suspended military cooperation with Australia, which had been a close partner in the fight against terrorism, after material deemed offensive to Indonesians was found on an Australian military base. According to reports in the Indonesian news media, a laminated paper found at an Australian special forces base had insulted Pancasila, a state ideology that mandated belief in monotheism and unity among Indonesia’s 250 million people.
9. Jovenel Moise name Haiti Prez after poll fraud ruled out
Jovenel Moise was officially declared the President of Haiti in a re-run presidential election, after an electoral tribunal ruled out allegations of fraud during the November 2016 polls. Moise, who was elected with 55.6% votes, had also won the first-round election in October 2015 which was later scrapped over fraud allegations. He is expected to take office by February 7.
10. China launches first freight train to London
China has launched its first freight train to London over 12,000 kms away as part of efforts by the worlds second largest economy to expand rail links to different areas across the globe to improve its dwindling exports and stabilise slowdown. The train departed from Chinas international commodity hub Yiwu in Zhejiang Province. It will travel for about 18 days and more than 12,000 kilometres before reaching its destination in Britain. It will pass through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland, Germany, Belgium and France before arriving in London, state- run Xinhua news agency reported.
11. MS Dhoni steps down as limited overs captain
MS Dhoni has stepped down as the ODI and T20I captain of Indian cricket team. Two years ago, in 2014, he stunned the cricketing world when he announced shock retirement from Tests midway through the Australia tour.
Dhoni captained India in 199 matches of which India won 110 with a win percentage of 59.57. He also holds the record of most T20Is as a captain with a win percentage of 59.28. Dhoni has been India’s most successful captain. Under his leadership India have won the ICC T20 World Cup in 2007, the ICC ODI World Cup in 2011, ICC Champions Trophy in 2013 and also reached the top of the Test rankings in 2009. Dhoni is the only captain to win all the three ICC tournaments.
12. India win record 4th straight SAFF Women’s Championship title
The India women’s football team won their fourth consecutive South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) women’s championship title when they beat Bangladesh 3-1 in the final at the Kanchenjunga Stadium.
13. British art critic, author John Berger passes away
Influential British art critic and prize-winning author John Berger, a self-declared revolutionary who controversially backed the far-left Black Panthers, has died aged 90.
Berger was best known for his art criticism essay, Ways Of Seeing, written to accompany a BBC television series, which is credited with changing the way people viewed art. He also won the 1972 Booker Prize for Fiction for his experimental novel, G., set in pre-World War I Europe.