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February 19, 2017

19th February 2017 Important Daily Current Affairs

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Dear Great Ambitionists, here are today's (19th February 2017) Important Current Affairs updates. Happy Reading :)

Daily Current Affairs of 19th February 2017

International Current Affairs
  • Vice President Hamid Ansari today left on a 5-day visit to Rwanda and Uganda.
    • During this visit, he will hold bilateral talks with the leadership of the two East African nations besides attending a host of events.
    • His two-nation tour also seeks to broaden India's diplomatic footprint in Sub-Saharan Africa. 
    • Note : This is the first high-level visit from India to Rwanda
  • Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the launch of military operations to retake west Mosul from the Islamic State group today, four months into a massive offensive on the city.
  • South Asian Speakers’ Summit ended today in Indore.
    • This summit was inaugurated by Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan yesterday.
    • This summit was attended by presiding officers and delegates from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Nepal.
    • It was concluded with the adoption of an 'Indore Declaration' - laying down the outcome of the discussions and action points agreed upon by the participants - at a closing ceremony today.    
  • India has sanctioned a soft loan of 340 million US dollars to Nepal for various infrastructure development programmes.
    • Indian Ambassador to Nepal Ranjit Rae handed over the approval papers to Physical Infrastructure and Transport Minister of Nepal Ramesh Lekhak in the presence of Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu.
    • Note : Under this programme Mahalaki bridge and 15 roads will be constructed in various parts of Nepal.

National Current Affairs
  • The Health Ministry has ordered all of its 23 government hospitals to use only Khadi products
    • The list of hospitals includes hospitals like AIIMS, PGIMER (Chandigarh) and NIMHANS (Bengaluru). 
  • Under an initiative of the Ministry of External Affairs, people in several Indian cities will be able to apply for passports in select post offices from next month. 
    • The states covered under the first phase include Rajasthan, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Jharkhand
    • Through this, the government aims to reach out to people living far away from passport offices.
  • The GST Council has approved the Draft Compensation Bill, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today. 
    • The draft law seeks to compensate states which suffer losses during the first five years of GST implementation. 
    • The bill will now seek the Cabinet's approval and subsequently, the Centre will try to table it in the Budget Session's second half.
  • After enforcing complete liquor prohibition, the Bihar government recently amended service rules, forbidding government and judicial officers from consuming alcohol even outside the state and also India
    • Previous rules prohibited government officials from consuming alcohol on duty and at public places.
  • Maharashtra Government has approved Rs. 250 crore Cloud Seeding Programme during 2017 monsoon season to produce sufficient rain. 
    • Under this programme, weather scientists using aircrafts will spray chemicals (silver iodide) over clouds hovering above Solapur district, a rain shadow region of Western Ghats in the state.

Science & Technology
  • The Indian Navy's second sailboat 'Tarini' was inducted into service today at a ceremony in Goa.  
    • INSV Tarini is slated to be the platform for the first Indian circumnavigation by an all-women crew of Indian Navy beginning in August. 
    • The Navy operates four sailing vessels capable of open ocean deployments, all of which have been built in Goa shipyards.
  • Indian Coast Guard Ship ICGS AYUSH was commissioned at Kochi, Kerala by Vice Admiral AR Karwe, Flag Officer Commanding-in- Chief, Southern Naval Command. 
    • ICGS AYUSH is the 20th and the last in the series of 20 Fast Patrol Vessels (FPVs) built by Cochin Shipyard Ltd.
  • India’s vaccine regulatory body NRAI (National Regulatory Authority of India) was given the maximum ratings by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for vaccine regulations. 
    • The ratings were given by WHO after completing the assessment of the status of the NRAI system against WHO NRA Global Benchmarking Tool and measured the maturity of the system in India.

Deaths
  • Former Chief Justice of India Altamas Kabir passed away today.
    • Kabir was appointed as the Chief Justice of India on September 29, 2012.

Sports Current Affairs
  • The Indian women's rugby team won a Silver medal at the Asian Women's Rugby Sevens Trophy in Laos today. 
    • India won five matches and lost one in the two-day tournament, which included a 5-0 victory over Pakistan on the second day. 
    • Seven Asian countries, including South Korea, Philippines, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, India and hosts Laos participated in the tournament.
  • Olympians Akhil Kumar and Jitender Kumar have confirmed turning professional boxers after they signed a multi-year deal with IOS Boxing, the company which manages Vijender Singh's pro boxing career. 
    • The duo will reportedly make their pro debuts on April 1 in Mumbai and fight a total of six bouts each this year.
  • Cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been removed from captaincy of IPL franchise Rising Pune Supergiants
    • Note : Australian captain Steven Smith will replace Dhoni for the 10th season of the league.
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