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February 11, 2016

11th February 2016 - Important Current Affairs updates

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International Affairs
  • Today (11th February) is World Day of the Sick.
  • Titanic 2, the replica of the original ship that sank in the Atlantic Ocean almost 100 years ago, is set to go on its maiden voyage in 2018 from Jiangsu, China to Dubai. 
    • Being built at an estimated cost of £300 million to £400 million, it will have 840 cabins across three classes and carry 2,435 passengers and 900 crew.
  • Russia has presented a proposal for a truce in Syria by March. 
    • The world powers urged Russia to cease its bombing around the Syrian city of Aleppo, where a government offensive is currently underway to recapture the city. 
      • Truce  - an agreement between enemies or opponents to stop fighting or arguing for a certain time.
  • In a first-of-its-kind deal, UAE's national oil company Adnoc has signed a deal with the Indian government to store crude oil in India's maiden strategic storage and give two-thirds of the oil to India for free. 
    • Note : India is currently building underground storages at three different locations to store about 5.33 million tonnes of crude oil.
  • The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU) signed an agreement to improve cooperation in cyber defense.
    • The technical agreement signed at NATO headquarters at Brussels, Belgium will help the two in countering the modern forms of hybrid warfare.
  • Qatar signed a long-term deal with Pakistan to export liquefied natural gas.
    • The deal will see Qatar export up to 3.75 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas a year,.
    • This represents around 20% of the south Asian country’s gas requirements.

National Affairs
  • The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) is going to offer free Wi-Fi facility at 144 major bus stations of Karnataka including in Bengaluru, Mandya, Mysuru, Mangaluru and Davangere. 
    • Note : Currently, a pilot is being conducted at four bus stations in Bengaluru. 
    • The service will be available at a speed of 512 kbps for one hour or 100 MB, whichever is consumed first.
  • Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis has announced that the state government is going to offer 250 services online through its portal 'Aaple Sarkar' by August this year. 
    • The e-portal, which currently offers 150 services, allows people to file grievances and offer suggestions to the government on various issues. 
Places in News
  • The Tithal beach in Valsad, Gujarat is set to become India's first disabled-friendly beach. It will be equipped with disabled-friendly infrastructures like ramps and railings from the parking area to the water and food counters with lowered heights to serve the differently abled. Also, detailed signage will be installed to enable the physically challenged to reach the water without assistance.

Books & Authors
  • Author JK Rowling today announced the 8th edition of Harry Potter book on her Pottermore website. 
    • The book 'Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts I & II', written in play format, will be released on 31st July 2016
    • Its story, beginning 19 years later from where 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' ended, will portray Harry as a father.


  • Lance Naik Hanumanthappa, who was rescued from under 25 feet snow in the Siachen glacier following an avalanche, passed away today. 
    • Hanumanthappa, who was found alive on Monday in critical condition six days after the avalanche, slipped into a coma and was receiving treatment at an Army Hospital as his condition kept deteriorating.
  • Veteran film director Aurobindo Mukherjee passed away today at his residence here. He was 97.
    • Mukherjee was the maker of cult Bengali classics like Agniswar, Mouchak and Nishipadma.
Business & Economy
  • Indian Railways is set to export 120 Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches to Bangladesh for around ₹367 crore. 
    • This is the biggest-ever consignment of LHB coaches to be exported by the Railways, said an official. The first consignment of 40 coaches will be sent in March, and the remaining will be delivered by March 2017.
  • The Australian government will support the Adani Group's Carmichael mine and rail project in Northern Australia that is expected to attract investments worth $16.5 billion. 
    • The project, which got its approval from the Australian government last year, was earlier opposed by various groups for its expected environmental damage.
  • Twitter today launched a new timeline that shows users customised tweets at the top around the topics they are interested in, in reverse chronological order. 
    • Further, users can choose to turn on or turn off the feature. 
  • Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari today announced that the government plans to set up 2,000 water ports in the country. 
    • He further informed of plans to start Ro-Ro (Roll-on Roll-off) services at five places including Haldia, Patna, and Varanasi with the World Bank’s assistance.
  • Union Government has sanctioned about 580 crore rupees for Agartala-Akhaura railway link Project to connect Kolkata (West Bengal) with Tripura via Bangladesh
    • The sanctioned fund will be used for the laying of the five km railway track up to Bangladesh border from Agartala.
  • India is set to host heads of state from Sweden, Finland, Lithuania and Poland along with 25 ministers of trade and industry from countries including Japan and Germany for its mega 'Make in India' week, which is starting from 13th February2016.
    • Note : As many as 8,000 domestic industries including Tata Group, Reliance Industires, JSW and MNCs like GE, Boeing, JCB, and 49 nations and business delegations from 68 countries will participate in the Make In India Week.
  • Private sector bank YES Bank has tied up with Smartbox Ecommerce Solutions for solving challenges related to last mile delivery for e-commerce players.

New Appointments
  • Australia today announced the appointment of Indian-origin Harinder Sidhu as the country's next High Commissioner to India. 
    • She is the second Indian-origin official to serve as the country's envoy to India in less than five years. 
    • She will replace the outgoing High Commissioner Patrick Suckling
  • India's second-largest IT services company Infosys has appointed Scott Sorokin as global head of its digital business.
  • The Indian sports ministry  today approved a ₹35 lakh financial assistance for Indian tennis player Somdev Devvarman
    • The financial assistance will be provided from the National Sports Development Fund (NSDF) for Somdev's training, travel and accommodation requirements this season. 
    • Note : Somdev is currently ranked 186 in singles, on the ATP circuit.
  • India reached the milestone of winning their 1,000th South Asian Games gold medal on Day 5 of the 12th South Asian Games in Guwahati. 
    • The 1000-gold medal mark was achieved when swimmer Virdhawal Khade won the gold medal in the 50m Men's Butterfly event. 
    • Note : India's current medal tally of 238 is the highest ever in the history of the games.
    • Latest Medals Tally of ‎South Asian Games 2016‬
      • India
        • Gold - 140
        • Silver - 78
        • Bronze - 20
          • Total - 238
      • Sri Lanka
        • Gold - 25
        • Silver - 51
        • Bronze - 76
          • Total - 152
      • Pakistan
        • Gold - 7
        • Silver - 22
        • Bronze - 43
          • Total - 72
  • The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) is planning to introduce red and yellow cards into club, university and schools cricket, to curb the increase of violent behaviour
    • Under the new laws, players could face penalties like being sent off for 10 overs, or be declared 'retired out', based on the degree of offence.

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