Current Affairs Daily Digest – February 23 2017


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  1. Somalia president appoints Hassan Ali Khaire as its new Prime Minister

Somalia’s new President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed has picked political newcomer Hassan Ali Khaire, a former oil company executive, as the country’s prime minister. This appointment was announced shortly before Mohamed, also known as Farmajo, departed to Saudi Arabia for his first foreign trip since his election.

  1. Ramkumar Narayanan Product Development head of eBay quits

Ramkumar Narayanan, general manager and global head of monetisation products at eBay Marketplaces in India, has resigned from the firm. He was primarily responsible for generating revenues for eBay. Narayanan has confirmed the development to Techcircle.

  1. Karnataka Bank bags 2 awards

Karnataka Bank has bagged two ‘IBA-Banking Technology’ awards. The bank was the winner in ‘Best financial inclusion initiatives (small bank)’ category, and was runner-up in ‘Best use of digital and channels technology (small bank)’ category.

IBA-Banking Technology award recognises and rewards individuals, professionals and banks who have recorded noteworthy technology and business benefits in the previous year.

  1. Tobacco food products like gutkha, pan masala banned in Punjab

Punjab government has prohibited the manufacture, storage, sale or distribution of food products containing tobacco or nicotine like gutkha and pan masala in the state for one year. The ban also applies on processed, flavoured, scented, chewing tobacco, whether they are packaged or unpackaged or sold as one or separate products.

  1. E-learning centres opened at public libraries by J&K govt

Jammu and Kashmir government has launched E-learning program by installing computers in the state’s public libraries, thus assisting students to prepare for competitive exams like JEE, CET and so on. The SPS library at Moulana Azad Road has been the government’s choice to initiate a program to provide quality coaching and comprehensive solutions to NEET, JEE and CET aspirants.

  1. New fully completed Antyodaya Express launched by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu

Equipped with cushioned seats, aluminum composite panels, and LED lights, the Antyodaya Express, a new fully unreserved train for the common man with specially designed colourful coaches was unveiled by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu. Ready to be pressed into service on busy routes, the first Antyodaya Express will be launched between Mumbai and Tatanagar, and the second will be between Ernakulam and Howrah shortly.

  1. Govt eyes Rs 3,809 cr via gold schemes 2016-17, new bonds from Feb 27

The government will launch the next tranche of Sovereign Gold Bonds on February 27 as part of efforts to mop up Rs 3,809 crore from all the gold schemes during this fiscal year. The three gold schemes–Sovereign Gold Bonds, Gold Monetisation Scheme and Indian Gold Coin–were unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2015 as part of the efforts to reduce imports of the yellow metal.

  1. Haryana makes must for private schools to set up solar plants

The Haryana government has made it mandatory for all private schools to install solar systems to make them self-sufficient in the field of electricity. “A special grant at the rate of Rs 20,000 per kilowatt is being given to these schools for installing solar power plants.

During the summer vocations in the schools, in the month of June and July, the electricity to be generated from these solar power plants would be added to the grid, the record of which would be maintained through net metering.

  1. Bharat Financial launches instant microloan facility

Microfinance institution Bharat Financial Inclusion Ltd has launched an initiative for instant loan approval and disbursed them to three women in a village near Bassi in Jaipur district.  The initiative is expected to help rural areas embrace cashless transactions. The loans are cashless since they are deposited directly to the loanee’s bank account.

  1. National Biodiversity Congress 2017 held in Kerala

National Biodiversity Congress (NBC) 2017, one of the significant biodiversity mega events of the country, will be held from February 22. Hosted by the Kerala State Biodiversity Board, the present edition of the biennial event comprises an array of programmes including conference, exhibition, capacity building workshops and Childrens Biodiversity Congress

  1. Cabinet approvals: 23 February 2017

Some of the Cabinet Approvals have been approved by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. The Cabinet Approvals are as follows:

  • The Union Cabinet has given its approval for signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Australia for promotion and development of cooperation in civil aviation security.
  • Cabinet approves signing of Air Services Agreement between India and Greece. The Agreement has the potential to spur greater trade, investment, tourism and cultural exchange between the two countries bringing it in tune with the developments in the civil aviation sector.
  • Cabinet approves signing of an Agreement between India and Poland on cooperation in the field of agriculture and allied sectors
  1. SBI merger with five associate banks from April 1

The government has said that 1 April will be the record date for the merger of State Bank of India (SBI) with five of its associate banks. The associate banks are State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur (SBBJ), State Bank of Mysore (SBM), State Bank of Travancore (SBT), State Bank of Hyderabad (SBH) and State Bank of Patiala (SBP).

  1. Bharti Airtel to acquire Telenor India

Bharti Airtel the largest domestic telecom operator by subscriber base, said that it has entered into a definitive agreement with Telenor South Asia Investments to acquire Telenor India Communications that will give it an access to seven circles including Gujarat, Maharashtra, UP East and UP West.

  1. WTO’s trade facilitation agreement comes into effect

The World Trade Organization’s (WTO’s) landmark Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), which came into force on 23 febraury 2017  is expected to provide a much-needed boost to beleaguered global growth.Ratified by 112 nations, more than two-thirds of all member nations, the deal will ease trade processes, bring down barriers to trade and enhance the capacity of the developing world to better engage with the global trading network.

  1. Ban on Women army officers wearing Islamic headscarf removed by Turkey

Turkey’s army is lifting a historic ban on female officers wearing the Islamic headscarf in the officially secular country.The move, ordered by the defence ministry, applies to female officers working in the general staff and command headquarters and branches.The reform will come into force once it is published in the official gazette. It was not immediately clear if it applied to women on combat missions. It will also apply to female cadets.

  1. Cressida becomes 1st woman to head Scotland Yard in 188 yrs

The British government has said senior officer Cressida Dick will be the next commissioner of London’s Metropolitan Police the first woman to lead Scotland Yard in its 188-year  history. Dick, a former assistant commissioner of the force, succeeds Bernard Hogan-Howe, who is stepping down next week.

  1. 7 new Earth-sized exoplanets discovered by NASA

Astronomers have found a nearby solar system with seven Earth-sized planets, three of which circle their parent star at the right distance for liquid surface water, bolstering the prospect of discovering extraterrestrial life, research published .

The star, known as TRAPPIST-1, is a small, dim celestial body in the constellation Aquarius. It is located about 40 light years away from Earth, close by astronomical standards, but about 44 million years away at the average cruising speed of a commercial passenger jet.

  1. Former Indian Navy Ship Viraat to be decommissioned on Mar 6

Indian Naval Ship (INS) Viraat, which was first commissioned in the Indian Navy on May 12, 1987, will be decommissioned from service on March 6. A press briefing and interaction regarding the same will be organised by the navy on February 27. The former flagship aircraft carrier that served the navy for 27 years had previously served the United Kingdom Royal Navy for 27 years.

  1. ISSF World Cup tournament starts in Delhi

Delhi will host the ISSF World Cup finals in 2017, the National Rifle Association of India.Moscow made the decision to award the 2017 edition of the ISSF World Cup finals (Rifle/Pistol/Shotgun combined) to the Indian capital. The event will be hosted in October. This is in addition to the ISSF World Cup series scheduled to be held in the capital in February 2017.

20. 1st Gramin Khel Mahotsav to be held next month in Delhi: Vijay Goel

Union Sports Minister Vijay Goel has announced that the first Gramin Khel Mahotsav will be held from 25th to 31st of next month in New Delhi. Goel said the games will be held in five sports disciplines Athletics, Kabaddi, Kho-Kho, Volley Ball and Wrestling. He said a need has been felt to deepen the sports culture among the rural youth.

21. India to host 2019 Combined World Cup for shooting

India will be hosting the Combined World Cup for shooting in 2019, a qualifying event for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which will further boost the country’s profile as a global shooting destination. The National Rifle Association of India’s (NRAI) bid was approved by the International Shooting Sport Federation’s Executive Board in its meeting held in New Delhi.

22. Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s U.N. Ambassador, Dies at 64

Russia’s combative ambassador to the United Nations, Vitaly Churkin, died. Ambassador Churkin remained at his work post until the last minute. He devoted his whole life to defending the interests of Russia and was to be found on the very front lines and in the most stressful posts.



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