Current Affairs Daily Digest: February 21, 2017
The Current Affairs Daily Digest for February 21, 2017 with important tid-bits on current affairs
National Current Affaris
India, Rwanda sign MoUs in innovation, aviation and visa requirements
India and Rwanda have inked three agreements in the fields of innovation, aviation and visa requirements to boost bilateral relations. These agreements were signed in Kigali in the presence of Vice President Mohammed Hamid Ansari and Rwandan Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi during a business forum meet. Vice President is the first Indian leader to officially visit Rwanda. He launched India-Rwanda innovation growth programme.
Government launches SAATHIYA Resource Kit and SAATHIYA SALAH mobile app for adolescents
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has launched SAATHIYA Resource Kit and SAATHIYA SALAH mobile app for adolescents as part of the Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karyakram (RKSK) programme. The kit and app will help Peer Educators (Saathiyas) who are introduced under the RKSK programme. Read more
Government announces expansion of rotavirus vaccine in 5 states
The Union Government has announced the expansion of rotavirus vaccine in five additional states under Universal Immunisation Programme (UIP). They are Assam, Tripura, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu. The announcement comes after 38 lakh children were vaccinated when the vaccine was first introduced in four states – Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha. Read more
Government releases new format for recording, reporting road accident data
The Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has released the new format for recording and reporting road accident data. The uniform accident-recording format has been drawn on the lines of developed countries. It has been forwarded to all state police and transport departments for adaptation and to furnish annual road accident data. Read more
MoU signed for welfare of Handicraft Artisans belonging to Scheduled Castes
The Union Ministry of Textiles and Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment have signed MoU to step up interventions for the welfare and economic development of scheduled caste artisans. The MoU was signed between Development Commissioner (Handicrafts), Ministry of Textiles and National Scheduled Castes Finance and Development Corporation (NSFDC), a CPSU under Ministry of Social Justice. Read more
States Current Affairs
J&K to observe 2017 as Year of Apple
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has declared 2017 as ‘Year of Apple’ in a major bid to promote the famed Kashmiri apples in domestic and foreign markets. It was announced after she launched High Density Apple Plantation Scheme in Srinagar. Under this scheme, state government provide high-density apple plants to the farmers. Government will provide 50% subsidy. The high density plants have a yield of 50-70 metric tonnes per hectare against 10-12 tonnes in case of conventional plants. J&K at 11.2 metric tonnes is the largest apple producing State in India, which accounts for 71% of national production.
Gujarat Assembly passes Aadhaar Bill, 2017
The Gujarat Assembly has passed Gujarat Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill, 2017. The bill seeks to empower the state government to use Aadhaar number as the sole identifier for the delivery of various subsidies and benefits in an effective and targeted manner. Read more
International Current Affairs
Lt. Gen. Herbert Raymond McMaster appointed as new National Security Advisor of US
US President Donald Trump has appointed Lt Gen Herbert Raymond McMaster as new National Security Advisor (NSA). Currently, he is serving as Director of the Army Capabilities Integration Centre. His appointment comes following the ouster of Michael Flynn who was forced out by Trump following misleading revelations about discussing sanctions with Russia’s ambassador to the US during the presidential transition.
Iran launches advanced rockets during military exercise in desert
Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard has launched sophisticated smart and advanced rockets during a military exercise Grand Prophet 11. In this test, rockets with ranges of more than 100 kilometers as well as the Fajr-3, Fajr-4 and Fajr-5 rockets, all believed to have under 100-kilometer range, were successfully tested. Three-day exercise was held in Iran’s central desert. These tests comes even after United States put Iran “on notice” after it earlier test-fired a medium-range ballistic missile.
Banking, Business & Economy Current Affairs
SBI rebrands corporate website as bank.sbi
India’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) has rebranded its corporate website as ‘bank.sbi’ from earlier sbi.co.in. The new domain name bank.sbi is the highest domain protocol known as generic top level domain (gTLD). With this, SBI became first banking organisation in India to use a gTLD for its online presence and providing an exclusive experience of security and assurance to its customers. gTLD will enables an organisation to use its corporate name as their website’s top-level identifier, instead of using a more traditional ‘.com’ domains. It will also simplify the digital experience of customers and bring in enhanced security against phishing and lookalike websites.
Flipkart, Microsoft announce strategic cloud partnership
Software giant Microsoft Corp. has announced a strategic partnership with Flipkart. Under this partnership, Flipkart will adopt Microsoft Azure as its exclusive public cloud computing platform. Microsoft’s Azure starting with computing infrastructure will add a layer of advanced cloud technologies and analytics to Flipkart’s existing data centres. It will allow Flipkart to leverage artificial intelligence, machine learning and analytics capabilities such as the Cortana Intelligence Suite and Power BI to optimize its data for innovative merchandising, advertising, marketing and customer service.
Apple acquires Israeli start-up RealFace
Electronics giant Apple has bought Israeli startup RealFace, a cybersecurity and machine learning firm specializing in facial recognition technology for undisclosed amount. RealFace founded by Adi Eckhouse Barzilai and Aviv Mader has developed facial recognition software that offers users a smart biometric login. This software make passwords redundant when accessing mobile devices or PCs. This acquisition will help Apple to further boost its prospects in the world of artificial intelligence (AI).
Environment, Science and Technology Current Affairs
SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket successfully launches robotic Dragon cargo ship to ISS
California-based SpaceX’s Falcon 9 Rocket successfully launched Dragon cargo ship with about 2,500 kg of supplies and science experiments to International Space Station (ISS). The rocket was launched from NASA’s Launch Complex LC-39A at Kennedy Space Centre in Florida. With this, SpaceX became first private company to launch rocket from NASA’s launch facility. The launch pad was originally built for the NASA’s 1960s-era Apollo moon program and was leased to SpaceX in 2014.
Sports Current Affairs
Virat Kohli becomes first sportsperson to ink 100-crore deal with Puma
Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli became the first Indian sportsperson sing a Rs 100-crore endorsement deal with a single brand. He achieved this feat after signing an eight-year deal with sports apparel brand Puma worth Rs 110 crore. With this, he join Usain Bolt, Asafa Powell and Thierry Henry, among others, as a global ambassador for the brand. So far only Sachin Tendulkar and Mahendra Singh Dhoni have been in the Rs 100-crore club through multi-year contracts with multiple talent management agencies. They have never been signed by a single brand for such a big amount.