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Daily Current Affairs 10th Feb 2018

PM Modi becomes 1st Indian Prime Minister to visit Palestine

  • PM Narendra Modi became the first Indian Prime Minister to visit Palestine after he arrived in Ramallah as part of his three-nation tour. The Prime Minister will also visit the UAE and Oman. The Ministry of External Affairs said that the Prime Minister’s visit was aimed at strengthening India’s ties with the Gulf and West Asian region.

President of India to Visit Madhya Pradesh

  • The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, will visit Madhya Pradesh (Gwalior) tomorrow (February 11, 2018) to grace a function, organised by the Indian Red Cross Society, Haryana Chapter to declare Gwalior as ‘Divyang friendly district’ and to distribute artificial limbs.
  • He will also deliver the 4th Dr Ram Manohar Lohia Memorial Lecture at ITM University, Gwalior, and grace the convocation of Jiwaji University, before returning to Delhi.

India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) to enable Digital Payments

  • India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) Expansion Programme continues to make brisk progress and a nation-wide roll-out is scheduled beginning April 2018.
  • No decision has been taken to revise the timelines as reported in some sections of the media on Tuesday, 06th February 2018.
  • Once the proposed expansion is completed, IPPB will be providing the largest financial inclusion network in the country, covering both urban as well as rural hinterland with ability to provide digital payment services at the doorstep with the help of Postmen and GraminDakSewaks (GDS).
  • IPPB will also enable more than 17 crore active account-holders of Post Office Savings Bank to make interoperable digital payments including the benefit of NEFT, RTGS, UPI and bill payment services. Additionally, the IPPB will enable acceptance of digital payments across post offices in the country in line with the digital payments initiative of the government.

Shri J P Nadda launches National Deworming initiative

  • Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare launched the National Deworming Day at a function at Gurugram, today.
  • Speaking on the occasion he said, “Government of India is committed to ensuring high quality healthcare, accessible to every child and upto the last mile. One of the interventions, the National Deworming Day, is one of the largest public health initiatives in the world. ”.
  • The Union Health Minister announced that for this round of National Deworming Day, the Government is aiming to reach more than 32.2 crore children. Shri Nadda further stated that the Ministry had first launched National Deworming Day (NDD) in 2015 which was implemented in 11 States/UTs across all Government and Government-aided schools and Anganwadi centres targeting children aged 1 to 19 years.

Shri Rajnath Singh inaugurates the 24th All-India Forensic Science Conference in Ahmedabad

  • The Union Home Minister has said the Government has decided to establish a Cyber Crime Reporting Portal to report Cyber Crimes Against Women.
  • We will also establish a dedicated Cyber Crime Laboratory to stop Crimes Against Women and Children, he added.
  • Shri Rajnath Singh was addressing the gathering after inaugurating the 24th All-India Forensic Science Conference in Ahmedabad today.
  • The Union Home Minister said the Centre is preparing a huge infrastructure for Crime Control.

Consultative Committee of the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Meets in New Delhi

  • The Consultative Committee of the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation met under the Chairmanship of Union Minister Shri Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi yesterday, to deliberate upon the urgent need for participatory ground water management in the country.

Patanjali CEO supports legalisation of marijuana in India

  • Supporting the legalisation of marijuana, Patanjali CEO Acharya Balkrishna said that the nation should consider the benefits and positive uses of marijuana. Ayurveda has used marijuana due to its medicinal benefits since ancient ages, he added in an interview. On an earlier occasion, Balkrishna said, “By criminalising marijuana, we are denying a full-fledged business opportunity to our people.”

India retains top spot as source market for Dubai in 2017

  • Dubai witnessed 15 per cent growth in tourist arrivals from India in 2017, hosting 2.1 million visitors, retaining top spot as the source market.It also became the first country to cross the 2 million mark in a single year, according to the latest data published by Dubais Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism).
  • The growth is mainly due to the success of DubaiTourism’s ongoing collaboration with Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan in the ‘BeMyGuest’ campaign.

Thailand most traffic congested country of 2017

  • Thailand experienced the world’s worst traffic congestion in the year 2017, with drivers spending an average of 56 hours in peak congestion, according to a study by transportation analytics company INRIX. Drivers in Los Angeles spent 102 hours in congestion on average during peak time periods, making the US city the world’s most gridlocked cities for the sixth straight year.

Darkest building on Earth unveiled in South Korea

  • A structure dubbed as the darkest building on Earth has been unveiled at the Winter Olympic Games in South Korea. It has been sprayed with Vantablack Vbx2, a super-black material that absorbs more than 99% of the light that hits its surface. The building is a pavilion for car giant Hyundai and has been designed by British architect Asif Khan.

Bengaluru to get electric vehicle charging points across the city

  • Bengaluru city has the highest number of electric car owners in India, with over 6,000 electric vehicles. Now, the government is planning to install 11 public charging points for e-vehicles.
  • The first charging point will be opened for public from February 15th. It is located at the KR Circle at Bescom’s corporate office.
  • Currently, Mahindra is the only manufacturer that commercially sells electric vehicles in India. In the future, manufacturers like Tata, Maruti Suzuki, Toyota and Hyundai have plans to launch electric vehicles in the Indian market too.

Government sanctions Rs 1,487 crore to Army to boost perimeter security

  • The Defence Ministry has sanctioned Rs 1,487 crore to the Army to fortify its bases in Jammu and Kashmir, North East and several other places to plug their security gaps and protect them from any terror attacks.
  • Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has set a deadline of 10 months for the Army to carry it out. The Army headquarters has been told to monitor implementation of the project, they said.
  • The sanction to the project comes amid heightened hostilities between Indian and Pakistani armies along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir and several terror attack targeting military installations. Perimeter security will be strengthened at Army bases under six commands, the sources said.

NSE, BSE to stop trading of their indices on foreign bourses

  • Indian stock exchanges NSE, BSE and MSE said they’ll immediately stop trading of their indices on foreign bourses to prevent migration of liquidity to overseas markets. Markets regulator SEBI reportedly asked bourses to suspend trading of indices in international markets. This comes at a time when Singapore Stock Exchange (SGX) launched trading in single-stock futures in India’s top 50 companies.

SBI posts a quarterly loss for first time in 17 years

  • India’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) on Friday reported a loss of ₹2,416.4 crore for the December quarter, marking its first quarterly loss in at least 17 years. The bank had reported a standalone profit of ₹2,610 crore in the corresponding quarter last fiscal. The bank’s net interest income during the quarter rose to ₹18,688 crore.

RBI warns of fake website seeking personal info in its name

  • The RBI has cautioned people about a fake website in its name which is asking for personal and confidential banking details of bank customers. The layout of the fake website, www.indiareserveban.org, is similar to that of the original RBI website. Further, the RBI also cautioned the public about other fake websites such as www.rbi.org and www.rbi.in.

Banks to accept only online applications for education loan

  • The government has directed the banks to only accept online applications for education loans in a bid to make the loan disbursement process transparent and efficient. The banks have also been asked to not consider any application received in physical form. The move also aims to tackle the delay in sanctioning of the education loans.

Rules on 25% fund-raising via corporate bonds by September: Sebi

  • SEBI Chairman Ajay Tyagi said the rules for mandatory 25 % fund-raising by listed companies through this route would be out by September.
  • He said the volatility in the Indian markets may continue for some time due to global reasons, but there are no issues of concern for investors.

Digital gold loan provider Rupeek raises $6.8 million

  • Bengaluru-based digital gold loans providing startup Rupeek has raised $6.8 million in a funding round led by Accel Partners, filings have revealed. While Accel Partners invested $5 million, the remaining amount was invested by existing investor Sequoia Capital. Founded in 2015, Rupeek is an asset backed online lending platform which offers loans to its customers against gold.

NPCI Appoints Biswamohan Mahapatra as Non-Executive Chairman

  • National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) appointed Biswamohan Mahapatra as non-executive chairman for two years with immediate effect.
  • He succeeds B Sambamurthy who was the interim chairman.

Scientists make recyclable self-healing electronic skin

  • China and US-based researchers have developed an electronic skin, which when cut into two can heal itself by recreating chemical bonds between the two sides.
  • If broken beyond repair, it can be soaked in a solution that “liquefies” it for recycling the materials to make new e-skin. The film, equipped with sensors, can measure pressure, temperature, humidity, and air flow.

NASA probe beams farthest image, breaks 27-year-old record

  • NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft has beamed back an image while being 6.12 billion km away, breaking a 27-year-old record set by Voyager 1. NASA’s Voyager 1, the farthest man-made object, had captured the “Pale Blue Dot” photo of Earth before exiting the Solar System. Meanwhile, New Horizons shared an image of a Kuiper belt object, beyond the orbit of Neptune.

23rd Winter Olympic Games 2018 Starts In Pyeongchang, South Korea

  • The 23rd Olympic Winter Games officially kicked off with a colorful ceremony at Pyeongchang in South Korea.
  • Ninety-two countries are participating in the event.
  • There will be 102 medals up for grabs in Pyeongchang, covering seven sports and 15 disciplines.
  • The ceremony was directed by Song Seung-whan, a South Korean actor. Hosts South Korea also produced a show of unity with neighbors North Korea during the ceremony.

India win 1 silver, 2 bronze at Asian Para-Cycling C’ships

  • The Indian contingent won a silver medal and two bronze medals at the Asian Para-Cycling Championships held in Naypyidaw, Myanmar on Friday. Last year’s silver medallist Divij Shah repeated his silver-winning performance while BSF soldier Harinder Singh won bronze adding to his bronze from the last year. New entrant Madhu Bagri, meanwhile, won bronze in hand-cycling.

Haryana win 1st Khelo India School Games with 38 gold medals

  • Haryana claimed 38 gold medals to win the recently concluded inaugural Khelo India School Games in New Delhi. Overall, Haryana won 102 medals in the Games including 26 silver and 38 bronze medals, while Maharashtra finished second with 36 gold medals. Khelo India School Games will be held annually for the school students aged under 17.
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