Current Affairs Daily Digest – February 25 and 26 2017


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  1. US Democrats elect Tom Perez as new national chairman

U.S. Democrats elected former Labor Secretary Tom Perez as chairman choosing a veteran of the Obama administration to lead the daunting task of rebuilding the party and heading the opposition to Republican President Donald Trump.Members of the Democratic National Committee, the administrative and fundraising arm of the party, picked Perez on the second round of voting over U.S. Representative Keith Ellison, a liberal from Minnesota.

  1. Motherson Sumi’s Vivek Sehgal bags EY’s ‘entrepreneur of the year’ award

Vivek Chaand Sehgal, the 60-year-old chairman of auto parts maker Motherson Sumi Systems Ltd, has been named Indian entrepreneur of the year 2016 by EY, the consulting firm formerly known as Ernst & Young. Infosys Ltd co-founder Nandan Nilekani was honoured with a lifetime achievement award for spearheading India’s Aadhaar project as head of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). In a statement, EY called the project “a pioneering citizen identification programme, unparalleled in scope and scale worldwide”.

  1. World’s first robot table tennis tutor sets Guinness record

Omron’s table tennis robot FORPHEUS is certified as the “first robot table tennis tutor” in the world by Guinness World Records. A symbol of its technological expertise, OMRON first created the robot in 2013.

In October, 2015, the Japanese company OMRON Corporation introduced a table tennis robot with a sensor that measures the position of its opponent and the movement of the ball 80 times per second, it can predict the trajectory of the ball and hit the ball back, and project the landing point of the ball.

  1. Former CM T R Zeliang appointed Finance Advisor to Nagaland government

Former Nagaland Chief Minister T R Zeliang was appointed as Finance Advisor to the state government in the rank of a Cabinet Minister.Mr. Zeliang, appointed by the Governor P.B.Acharya, will receive the pay and allowances and all other facilities admissible to a cabinet minister.

Mr. Zeliang resigned from the chief ministership on February 19 conceding to the demand of the Joint Coordination Committee and Nagaland Tribal Action Committee for his decision to hold elections to urban bodies with 33 per cent reservation for women and subsequent incidents.

  1. AYUSH Minister to inaugurate the World Integrated Medicine Forum on Regulation of Homeopathic Medicine

Minister of State (Independent Charge) for AYUSH, Shri Shripad Yesso Naik will inaugurate the World Integrated Medicine  Forum on Regulation of Homeopathic Medicinal Products: National and Global strategies in New Delhi.

This is the first-of-its-kind forum considering the increased perception of the international world towards India as a key player in the progress of the homoeopathy drug industry,. Drug lawmakers, regulators, manufacturers and pharmacopeial experts from various regulatory authorities, eminent scientific organisations and pharmaceutical industries  from 25 countries, are participating in the two days forum to strategize the  actionable aspects in the homoeopathic drug industry, which, in turn, will promote global harmonisation in the sector.

  1. GST could raise India’s GDP growth to over 8%, says IMF

The adoption of the Goods and Service Tax (GST) could help raise India’s medium-term gross domestics product (GDP) growth to over 8% and create a single national market for enhancing the efficiency of the movement of goods and services, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said. The IMF said larger than expected gains from the GST and further structural reforms could lead to significantly stronger growth, while a sustained period of continued low global energy prices would also be beneficial to India.

  1. Government ropes in Shilpa Shetty as Swachh Bharat brand ambassador

The government has roped in actress Shilpa Shetty as a brand ambassador for the Modi government’s cleanliness initiative Swachh Bharat Mission. The 41-year-old actress will feature in TV and radio campaigns aimed at discouraging people from littering on roads. Soon, campaign posters featuring her will be displayed at various places across the country.

  1. Union Government allows Tamil Nadu to increase number of workdays under MGNREGA

The government has raised the workdays under its flagship Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) from 100 to 150 for tribals, a move that will benefit 14 lakh families. The Union Cabinet decision will come into effect from April this year. Those tribals who have received land rights under the Forest Rights Act, 2006, will be eligible for additional 50 days of wage employment under the rural job scheme.

  1. Rajasthan 2nd largest crude oil producer in country

Rajasthan has become the second largest crude oil producer in the country after the offshore field Bombay High, Governor Kalyan Singh said in the Assembly highlighting the achievements of the state government. Delivering his speech on the first day of the Budget Session, Singh said oilfields in the state were producing nearly 90 lakh tones oil annually, which is 24 per cent of the total domestic crude oil production.

  1. India’s first hill station bicycle path inaugurated in Darjeeling

 The Hill authorities inaugurated India’s first mountain cycle park along a 20-km stretch inside a forest in the Senchel wildlife sanctuary.This is the first dedicated cycle park in any hill station in the country. Tourists have one more reason to visit their favourite hill station Darjeeling. Besides trekking and other adventure sports, they can now go on a cycle ride in the mountains.

  1. Famous International Shivratri festival begins in Mandi on 25 feb 2017

Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh inaugurated the famous week-long International Shivratri Fair at the historical Paddal Ground. Thousands of people, dressed in their colourful attire, followed the procession carrying the palanquins of the local deities and marched to the Paddal mela ground from Madho Rai temple. Around 200 devtas participated in the Jaleb from almost all corners of the district.

  1. Ahmedabad celebrates its 606th foundation day

Ahmedabad’s nomination to the UNESCO heritage list, the Ahmedabad Sunni Muslim Waqf Committee will be using the opportunity of city’s 605th foundation day to chalk out a policy for promotion of Ahmedabad’s rich heritage, along with establishing an importance of this day.  Organising such an event for the first time at Juma Masjid, one of the earliest monuments that the city as an effort to reclaim its shared past, nearly a dozen non-government organisations associated with preservation of city’s heritage would also come together and hold a discussion on ways to promote Ahmedabad’s heritage as well as its foundation day as one of the festivals.

  1. UBI ties up with IRCTC to launch railway booking facility

Kolkata-based United Bank of India (UBI) has launched a railway ticket booking facility by having a direct tie-up IRCTC. The facility was launched on February 21. Post the introduction of this facility, UBI customers can now book railway tickets seamlessly through IRCTC website using the bank’s debit card.

  1. India to be fastest growing economy among G-20 nations: Moody’s

India will be the fastest growing economy among G-20 countries clocking a 7.1 per cent growth in 2017, Moody’s Investors Service said. The Indian economy had slowed in the fourth quarter of 2016 due to the withdrawal of 86 per cent of the currency in circulation — without an immediate replacement.

India is forecast to have the fastest growing economy among all G-20 countries with growth put at 7.1 per cent for 2017, down from a previous expectation of 7.5 per cent because of the effects of demonetisation.

  1. India, ADB ink $375 mn loan pact for industrial corridor

India and ADB have signed USD 375 million pact for loans and grants to develop 800—km Visakhapatnam—Chennai Industrial Corridor, which is the first phase of a planned 2,500-km East Coast Economic Corridor. ADB had last September approved USD 631 million in loans and grants for the industrial corridor.

The Asian Development Bank said in a statement that it approved loans comprising a USD 500 million multitranche facility to build key infrastructure in the four main centers along the corridor — Visakhapatnam, Kakinada, Amaravati, and Yerpedu—Srikalahasti in Andhra Pradesh.

  1. Dena Bank rolls out RFID-enabled cards to serve valued clients better

 Dena Bank has introduced RFID-enabled banking cards whereby a branch/relationship manager can identify a valued client entering a branch with the card. Once the client enters the branch, complete information about him/her will pop up on the manager’s desktop. The RFID card is being introduced in select branches, and Dena Bank JVPD branch (Mumbai) is the first branch to be enabled with RFID technology.

  1. India, Bangladesh ink MoU for development of Sylhet city

India and Bangladesh have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the sustainable development of Sylhet city with financial aid from India. Indian High Commissioner Harsh Vardhan Shringla, Additional Secretary of the Economic Relations Division Shah Md. Aminul Haque and Sylhet City Corporation CEO Enamul Habib signed the tripartite agreement in Sylhet, a metropolitan city in northeastern Bangladesh.

  1. India, Germany ratify Social Security Agreement

India and Germany have ratified the Social Security Agreement (SSA), which will come into force from May 1 this year, to help promote more investment flows between the two countries. The SSA will also integrate the provisions of the 2008 social insurance pact that exempts detached workers of the two countries from making social security contributions in either countries so long as they were making such contributions in their respective countries

  1. India clears Rs 17,000-crore mega missile deal with Israel

A Rs 17,000 crore deal has been cleared by the government for jointly developing with Israel a medium-range surface-to-air missile (MR-SAM) for the army, reflecting India’s fast-growing defence ties with the Jewish nation. The project will be implemented by the DRDO (Defence Research and Development Organisation) and Israeli Aircraft Industry (IAI).

  1. Australia and Indonesia restore full military ties

Australia and Indonesia have full military ties between the two countries had been restored, after Indonesia’s military suspended cooperation in January because of “insulting” teaching material found at an Australian base. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made the announcement alongside Indonesian President Joko Widodo, who arrived in Australia for his first visit as president.

  1. Pakistan, Turkey sign 10 agreements to enhance bilateral ties

 Pakistan has signed 10 agreements with Turkey to enhance bilateral cooperation in various fields, including exchange of financial intelligence relating to money laundering, hydrocarbon and defence cooperation. The agreements and MoUs were signed during Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to Turkey from 22-24 February during which he co-chaired the 5th Session of Pakistan-Turkey High Level Strategic Cooperation Council (HLSCC).

  1. Venezuela, Libya suspended from voting in UNGA

 Venezuela and Libya have been suspended from voting in the UN General Assembly for the second time in two years because of millions of dollars in unpaid dues to the world body. The Assembly decided this week that six countries would lose their votes in the 2016-2017 session because they’re over two years in arrears.

 As of January, the most recent figures available, Venezuela would have to make a minimum USD 24 million payment to get under the two-year threshold and get its voting rights restored. Libya’s minimum payment is USD 6.5 million.

  1. ISSF World Cup: Pooja Ghatkar clinches bronze

Pooja Ghatkar overcame some technical issues to clinch the women’s 10m air rifle bronze medal as India opened their account on a positive note in the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup. The 28-year-old Ghatkar, a former Asian champion, shot 228.8 in the final of 10m air rifle to finish third on the podium and win her maiden World Cup medal, at the Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range.

  1. Saina Nehwal to represent Olympic Committee in BWF

Shuttler Saina Nehwal, who was appointed a member of the International Olympic Committee’s Athletes’ Commission (AC) last year, would be representing the panel in the Badminton World Federation (BWF). She would join the BWF Athletes’ Commission as a representative of the IOC AC, IOC said in a communication to Nehwal.

  1. India wins all 3 medals at Asian Para-Road Cycling Championship

Aditya Mehta, who in 2013 became the first Indian to secure two silver medals at the para-Asian cycling championship, reached Mumbai after completing a journey of 1,450 km from the capital on his cycle. This time, unlike most of his other rides, Aditya covered this distance without his prosthetic leg, with his left limb saddled onto the pedal. The aim of this ‘adventure’, Aditya says, was to show support and respect to the paramilitary personnel who have lost their limbs in war.


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