Current Affairs – February, 2019

Latest Current Affairs February, 2019 with Current Affairs, news summary on current events of National and International importance of February, 2019 for Banking, SSC, CLAT, UPSC, State PCS, IBPS, Railways and other Competitive Examinations.

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MGR Centenary Arch in Chennai Unveiled

The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu K Palaniswami has unveiled MGR Centenary Arch on Kamaraj Salai of Chennai.

MGR Centenary Arch

  • The MGR Centenary Arch has been built at an estimated cost of 2.52 crore, from the state Secretariat.
  • The Centenary Arch 66 feet wide and 52 feet height was proposed to commemorate the birth centenary of the late chief minister MG Ramachandran.
  • The division bench of Madras High Court had passed an interim order restraining the state government from inaugurating the arch, off the famous Marina beach, till disposal of public interest litigation petition opposing it last year.
  • The Madras High Court had permitted the Tamil Nadu government to unveil the arch but without any ceremony.

Why the Centenary Arch was challenged?

  • It was alleged that the arch was constructed by encroaching on arterial Kamarajar Salai and its pedestrian space meant for public use was in total violation of various legislations.
  • The Tamil Nadu Highways Act does not permit any permanent structure can be constructed either on the middle or the pathway of a road.

DR M G Ramachandran

DR M G Ramachandran popularly known as M. G. R is an actor, filmmaker and politician who served as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu for ten years between 1977 and 1987. He has been also honoured with the Bharat Ratna.

New Railway Zone for Andhra Pradesh

The Union Minister for Railways Piyush Goyal has announced the creation of new railway zone for Andra Pradesh, Southern Coast Railway Zone to be headquartered in Visakhapatnam.

Key Facts about the Southern Coast Railway Zone

  • The Southern Coast Railway zone would comprise of existing Guntakal, Guntur and Vijayawada divisions that currently fall under the South Central Railway and the  South Central Railway will then consist of the Hyderabad, Secunderabad and Nanded divisions.
  • Waltair division under the East Coast Railway Zone, covering the northern districts of Andhra Pradesh, parts of Chhattisgarh and Odisha will be split into two.
  • One part will be incorporated in the new zone and merged with the neighbouring Vijayawada division, the remaining portion will be converted into a new division, headquartered at Rayagada, under the East Coast Railway (ECoR).

Political Move?

  • Under item 8 of Schedule 13 (Infrastructure) of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Act, 2014 Indian Railways was required to examine establishing a new railway zone in the successor state of Andhra Pradesh. Southern Coast Railway Zone is a step forward in this direction.
  • The establishment is largely seen as a political move since the Railway Minister has given assent to the creation of new zone despite the internal report of the Railway Board calling it “catastrophic”.
  • The report had said that creation of a new zone in Andhra Pradesh would be “like putting many nails in the coffin of the Indian Railways.

The South Coast Railway zone would be an 18th Railway zone in the country. Currently, India has 17 zones and a total of 73 divisions.

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