- Today (20th February) is World Day of Social Justice.
- The United Nations General Assembly observe this day recognizing the need to promote efforts to tackle issues such as poverty, exclusion and unemployment.
- The US Consumer Product Safety Commission has declared all the hoverboards including self-balancing scooters and single-wheel devices currently available in the market as unsafe.
- It has also asked all hoverboard makers and sellers to voluntarily take the devices off from the market.
- Nepal Government decided to constitute an 11-member-political committee to study the demarcation of federal states on the constitution.
- The committee will also review the disputed provisions within the country’s new constitution that was adopted on 20 September 2015.
- India and Nepal today signed Nine partnership deals during Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli's first foreign trip since being elected.
- These deals are expected to help develop infrastructure, improve cultural cooperation, and utilise India's $250 million post-earthquake reconstruction grant.
- The University Grants Commission (UGC) today asked all the Indian universities to celebrate 'Matribhasha Diwas' on March 3 instead of February 21 this year.
- Note : UNESCO has declared February 21 as International Mother Language Day, which falls on a Sunday this year.
- The 'Matribhasha Diwas' is celebrated every year to promote the use of mother tongue.
- Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) have been set up for the cities of Jabalpur, Indore and Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh and Jaipur and Udaipur in Rajasthan for the development of smart cities.
- These cities figure in the list of the first 20 smart cities announced in January.
- Note : An SPV is a legal entity created to fulfil specific or temporary objectives.
- Maharashtra government today decided to formulate a policy on 'Green Corridor' and appoint a nodal officer to ensure smooth transportation of harvested organs within a specified time.
- The policy is aimed at negating hurdles faced by police over jurisdiction, obtaining NoCs and appointing counsellors to convince families of brain-dead patients to donate organs.
Business & Economy
- PM Narendra Modi and his Nepalese counterpart KP Sharma Oli remotely inaugurated a power transmission line connecting Nepal's Dhalkebar and Muzaffarpur in Bihar today.
- The power line will allow Nepal to import up to 80 megawatts of electricity from India at ₹3.45 per unit. The move is aimed at curbing the energy crisis in the Himalayan nation.
- Aditya Birla Nuvo today announced the formation of a joint venture (JV) with Idea Cellular to form a payments bank.
- Such banks can offer internet banking and initially collect deposits of up to ₹1 lakh per individual.
- The RBI gave 'in-principle' approval to 11 entities to form payment banks last year, including Reliance Industries, Tech Mahindra and Vodafone.
- The government today approved Eight highway projects, stretching about 350 km and worth ₹6,000 crore, for six Indian states.
- Projects worth ₹34,000 crore have been cleared by the Road Transport and Highways Ministry in February.
- Note : The government has set a target of awarding highway contracts of 10,000 km this fiscal and has so far achieved 7,677 km.
- Facebook has launched a new feature in the UK that offers support to users at the risk of committing suicide.
- The tool asks users to report posts from their friends that cause concern.
- The posts are then reviewed by a team at Facebook after which a message is sent to the person in question offering options and advice.
- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) today announced the re-election of its current Managing Director Christine Lagarde for a second five-year term, starting July 5.
- Actress Kajol was today appointed as a part-time member of the Prasar Bharati Board.
- The 41-year-old actress will reportedly serve on the board till November 2021.
- West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra has been named the new chairman of the empowered committee of state Finance ministers that is working out the details of the proposed Goods and Services Tax (GST).
- He will succeed Kerala Finance Minister KM Mani, who resigned in November over corruption charges.
- Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar presented the Raksha Mantri's Trophy and citation for the Best and Second Best Service Hospital in the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) today.
- The trophy for the Best service hospital went to Command Hospital, Eastern Command, Kolkata, which was received by its Commandant Major General T S Ahluwalia.
- The trophy for the second best hospital was presented to INHS Asvini, Mumbai, which was received by its Commandant Surgeon Rear Admiral A A Pawar.
Books & Authors
- Bollywood Actor Emraan Hashmi today announced the title of his first ever book, 'The Kiss of Life: How A Superhero and My Son Defeated Cancer'.
- The book is based on how his son managed to overcome the deadly disease, Cancer.
- It will be published in English, Hindi and Marathi and is expected to be released later this year.
- Renowned Odia singer Bhubaneswari Mishra (67) passed away today.
- She began her career with the song Tiki Mora Naa Ti for the mythological Odia movie Krushna Sudama in the 1970s.
- Indonesia win Badminton Asia Team Championships semi-final against India in Hyderabad.
- New Zealand Captain Brendon McCullum Scored the fastest Century in Test History in 54 balls while playing his farewell test against Australia in Christchurch.
- McCullum broke the 56-ball record jointly held by Vivian Richards and Misbah Ul Haq.
- McCullum also surpassed Adam Gilchrist for the record of Most Sixes in Test Matches (106).
- Indian long jumper Mayookha Johny today leapt to the 6.35-meter mark to win the Gold medal at the Asian Indoor Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar.
- This was India’s first medal at the Championships.
Read more Daily Current Affairs updates from here