Current Affairs

Daily Current Affairs 20 Feb

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1.       Towards improvement of delivery of healthcare services, “Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has great potential.This was stated by Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare during his address at Global Digital Health Partnership Summit, at Canberra, Australia.
·         Using ICT under Digital India Program of Government of India”, India is committed to reforms in health service delivery.
·         On the topic: Making Digital Health Services a Priority in Healthcare Reform, the Union Health Minister spoke.
2.       Dr V K Saraswat, Member, National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog, Professor Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology (DST) India and Daniel Shah, Director, Research Councils UK (RCUK) India launched the UK-India research projects on ‘Water Quality Research’ and ‘Energy Demand Reduction in Built Environment’.
·         With a total joint investment of up to £15 million, the ‘Water Quality Research’ programme has eight projects and ‘Energy Demand Reduction in Built Environment’ programme has four projects.
·         To deliver mutual benefits and research solutions not only to the UK and India but also to address shared global sustainable development goals clean water and clean energy, was the aim of the projects.
3.       On February 19, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi addressed World Congress on Information Technology in Hyderabad via Video Conference.
·         For the first time, this event is being held in India. It has been organized in partnership with NASSCOM, WITSA and the Government of Telangana.
4.       Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan and United Nations Environment Program chief Erik Solheim said, India will host the World Environment Day 2018.
·         “Beat Plastic Pollution” is the theme for the World Environment Day-2018, held every year on June 5. Canada hosted the event in 2017.
·         The first electric charging facility at the Lodhi Road UN office — the first ever in a UN office in India also launched meanwhile by Harsh Vardhan.
5.       Making Amazon the world’s third most valuable company, Amazon’s market value surpassed Microsoft’s for the first time.
·         As the most valuable companies in the world, Apple and Alphabet stand ahead of Amazon.
·         Microsoft, now ranked fourth, follows, ahead of Tencent and Facebook.
6.       As executive directors of Canara Bank and Vijaya Bank respectively, according to an official order, Debashish Mukherjee and Murali Ramaswami have been appointed.
·         Mukherjee is at present the general manager of United Bank of India and Ramaswami is the GM of Vijaya Bank.
·         The order issued by personnel ministry said, Mukherjee’s appointment is initially for three years but it is extendable by two years after review of his performance.
7.       On 18 February, the 71st British Academy Film Awards were presented.  Below is the full list of with winners.
·         Best Film: “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
·         Outstanding British Film: “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
·         Outstanding Debut By A British Writer, Director Or Producer : “I Am Not A Witch”
·         Film Not In The English Language: “The Handmaiden”
·         Documentary: “I Am Not Your Negro”
·         Animated Film: “Coco”
·         Director: “The Shape Of Water,” Guillermo Del Toro
·         Original Screenplay: “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Martin Mcdonagh
·         Leading Actress: “Frances Mcdormand, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
·         Leading Actor: Gary Oldman, “Darkest Hour”
·         Supporting Actress: Allison Janney, “I, Tonya”
·         Supporting Actor: Sam Rockwell, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
·         Original Music : “The Shape Of Water”
·         EE Rising Star Award (voted for by the public): Daniel Kaluuya
8.       Shiv Chhatrapati State Sports Awards by the Government of Maharashtra, given to the Indian cricket team members Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma.
·         Coach of the Year for the 2016-17 awarded Former India cricketer and assistant coach of Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Delhi Daredevils Pravin Amre.
9.       On February 19, Well-known Telugu cinema comedian Gundu Hanumantha Rao passed away in Hyderabad. He was 61.
·         Vijayawada was born on October 10, 1956 in a middle class family, Mr. Rao dabbled with theatre from a young age.
·         The first role he essayed on stage was in a play called Ravana Brahma in Vijayawada.
10.   For auction of coal mines/blocks for sale of coal to private sector under Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Act, 2015 and Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act, 1957, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved methodology.
·         This decision opens coal sector to commercial mining by private eblntiti, ending 41 year old monopoly ot state owned Coal India Ltd (CIL).
·         It will allow power cement and steel producers to source fuel more efficiently.
·         The auction will be ascending forward auction whereby bid parameter will be price offer in Rs./tonne which will be paid to State Government on actual production of coal.
·         There shall be no restriction on the sale and utilization of coal from coal mine.
11.   From the Abdul Kalam Island, off Odisha coast Surface-to-surface Agni-II ballistic missile was successfully test-fired.
·         The test was conducted as part of user trial by Strategic Forces Command (SFC) with logistics support from Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO).
·         It was aimed at re-establishing operational effectiveness of weapon system.
12.   Crèche facility on its premises for establishing inclusive and supportive work environment for its women employees is setting up by the Parliament House.
·         This is in line with provisions of Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2017.
·         It will be 1500 sq-foot centre and guarded by professionals, ensuring all-round development of children and will also have separate feeding room to aid mothers.
·         This will help to bring in visible impact by pushing other private establishments, central and state owned organizations to set up crèche facility, to aid mothers