Current Affairs Update – 24-27 February, 2017

Hello and welcome to exampundit. Here are the important Current Affairs from 24 to 27 February, 2017. These are important for the upcoming SBI PO Mains, NIACL Assistant and NICL AO 2017 Exams.

Current Affairs at a Glance - 24-27 February, 2017 - Click/Tap to show
  1. Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) on Monday announced that it was working with Tata Communications to support the rollout of India's first LoRaWAN (LoRa)-based network.
  2. After seeing an unmatchable success with its mobile wallet, Paytm is now expanding its reach in the e-commerce segment. While the Paytm app itself offered a bunch of booking, buying and renting facilities, the company has now launched a dedicated app and website, Paytm Mall, for the online marketplace business. Presently, the app is only available on Android, but is expected to be launched on iOS soon.
  3. India and Asian Development Bank (ADB) on 24 February 2017 signed USD 375 million loan agreement to develop 800 km long Visakhapatnam-Chennai Industrial Corridor.
  4. Kolkata-based United Bank of India (UBI) has launched a railway ticket booking facility by having a direct tie-up IRCTC.
  5. India and Bangladesh on 24 February 2017 signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide financial assistance to Bangladesh for sustainable development of Sylhet, a north-eastern Bangladeshi city.
  6. Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan inaugurated country's first post office passport service centre in Vidisha, on Saturday. He said that the centre will complete scrutiny and approval of passport applications in a day and provide passport to applicants in three days.
  7. The Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Vasundhara Raje inaugurated a medical project called Rajasthan Heart Attack Treatment programme (RAHAT), launched by Eternal Heart Care Center Hospital in Jaipur, on 25 February 2017.
  8. Senior diplomat Gopal Baglay was today appointed Spokesperson in the External Affairs Ministry succeeding Vikas Swarup, who was made India's new High Commissioner to Canada.
  9. The 89th Academy Awards, popularly called Oscar Awards, were conferred on 26 February 2017 (27 February 2017 as per Indian time).  Movie La La Land received the most nominations with a record-tying fourteen. Best Picture was awarded to Moonlight.
  10. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to send its first robotic spacecraft to the Sun in 2018.
  11. FORPHEUS, the world’s first robot table tennis tutor has created a new Guinness World Record with its extraordinary technological intelligence and educational capabilities.
  12. The Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) on 24 February 2017 celebrated the Central Excise Day across the country.



Financial and Banking News:

HPE, Tata Communications to build largest IoT network in India


  • At the ongoing Mobile World Congress here, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) on Monday announced that it was working with Tata Communications to support the rollout of India's first LoRaWAN (LoRa)-based network.
  • It is part of Tata Communications' strategy of creating mobile platforms and ecosystems that enable its customers and partners to connect people and Internet of Things (IoT)-connected devices on a global scale.
  • The first phase of the roll-out targets Tier 1, 2, 3 and 4 cities in India, touching over 400 million people.
  • With successful field trials in Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru, there are also 35 proof-of-concept applications in trial on the network.

Paytm launches new e-commerce platform ‘Paytm Mall’


  • After seeing an unmatchable success with its mobile wallet, Paytm is now expanding its reach in the e-commerce segment. While the Paytm app itself offered a bunch of booking, buying and renting facilities, the company has now launched a dedicated app and website, Paytm Mall, for the online marketplace business. Presently, the app is only available on Android, but is expected to be launched on iOS soon.
  • Paytm Mall has over 1.4 million sellers on board for the platform, across categories like fashion, electronics, consumer durables and home furnishings among others. Also, reassuring quality standards, Paytm claims that only trusted sellers passing strict quality guidelines and qualification criteria will be allowed on the ‘Mall’. All products listed on the mall will also go through Paytm certified warehouse and shipping channels ensuring guaranteed consumer trust.

India, ADB sign USD 375 million pact to develop Visakhapatnam-Chennai Industrial Corridor


  • India and Asian Development Bank (ADB) on 24 February 2017 signed USD 375 million loan agreement to develop 800 km long Visakhapatnam-Chennai Industrial Corridor.
  • This 800 km long Visakhapatnam-Chennai Industrial Corridor is the first phase of a planned 2500 km East Coast Economic Corridor. Earlier in September 2016, ADB approved USD 631 million loan for the industrial corridor.
  • Moreover, ADB also signed USD 5 million loan agreement under the Urban Climate Change Resilience Trust Fund that is managed by ADB to build climate change resilient infrastructure.
Highlights of the agreement

  • The loan comprises a total of USD 500 million multitranche facility to build key infrastructure in the four main centres along the corridor including Visakhapatnam, Kakinada, Amaravati, and Srikalahasti (Yerpedu) in Andhra Pradesh.
  • The first tranche of USD 245 million will finance subprojects to develop high-quality internal infrastructure in two corridors- Visakhapatnam and Srikalahasti.
  • It also encompasses USD 125 million policy based loan that will be used for capacity development of institutions engaged in corridor management.
  • It will also provide support to enhance ease of doing business and for supporting industrial and sector policies to stimulate industrial development. 

Sixty Four Indian exporters take part in Gulfood 2017


  • The world’s largest annual food event, Gulfood 2017 was officially inaugurated by the Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance, Shaikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) on 26 February 2017.
  • The five-day exhibition, which will continue till 2 March 2017, is expected to witness participation from over 90,000 food professionals from 150 countries across the world.
Key Highlights

  • Among the exhibitors are 64 Indian exporters dealing in a range of Agriculture and Processed Food products.
  • The exporters are participating under the banner of the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).
  • The organisation falls under the Indian Ministry of Commerce & Industry.
  • The APEDA pavilion was inaugurated by Commerce Secretary, Rita Teaotia.
  • APEDA is responsible for the promotion and development of the export of various Agricultural products.

UBI ties up with IRCTC to launch railway booking facility


  • Kolkata-based United Bank of India (UBI) has launched a railway ticket booking facility by having a direct tie-up IRCTC.
  • The facility was launched on February 21.
  • Post the introduction of this facility, UBI customers can now book railway tickets seamlessly through IRCTC website using the bank’s debit card, it said in a release.

India to provide financial assistance to Bangladesh for development of Sylhet city


  • India and Bangladesh on 24 February 2017 signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide financial assistance to Bangladesh for sustainable development of Sylhet, a north-eastern Bangladeshi city.
  • Under the MoU three development projects will be taken up in Sylhet. These projects will be developed at an expense of around Taka 240 million.
  • Projects for which financial aid will be provided under the tripartite agreement are
  • India will provide financial aid for construction of a five-storey Kinder Garten and High School Building
  • Financial aid will be provided for construction of a six-storey cleaner colony building
  • Financial aid will be provided for some development work in Dhupa Dighirpar area

Non-financial news related to India and States:

Vidisha gets India’s first post office passport centre


  • Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan inaugurated country's first post office passport service centre in Vidisha, on Saturday. He said that the centre will complete scrutiny and approval of passport applications in a day and provide passport to applicants in three days.
  • Speaking on the occasion, he said that after 38 years, the state is getting passport service centres in Indore and Vidisha. To recall, the then external affairs minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had inaugurated the regional passport office in Bhopal, on October 17, 1978.
  • Chouhan, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and minister of state for external affairs General V K Singh had inaugurated the PSLK in Indore, which is second in state and 90th in India. It will function as an extended arm of the Bhopal office. Officials said that applicants from Raisen, Guna, Ashok Nagar, Sagar and Damoh districts will be facilitated at PSLK in Vidisha.
  • Initially, 100 appointments will be released per day and the numbers will be increased gradually as per need, they said.
  • Minister of state (Independent) for horticulture Surya Prakash Meena and MP from Sagar Laxminarayan Yadav were also present at the function in Vidisha.

RAHAT medical project launched in Rajasthan


  • The Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Vasundhara Raje inaugurated a medical project called Rajasthan Heart Attack Treatment programme (RAHAT), launched by Eternal Heart Care Center Hospital in Jaipur, on 25 February 2017.
  • The programme involves creation and management of a telemedicines platform to treat ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI), a very serious type of heart attack.
  • The telemedicines platform will help capture and transmit patient's EKG along with clinical history from remote geographical locations to the heart command center (HCC) hub, where a team of expert cardiologists will provide an immediate interpretation of the EKG and real time STEMI guidance and management through tele-consultation after instantly recognising the EKG abnormalities.

PM Modi unveils 112 ft bust of 'Adiyogi'


  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 24 February 2017 unveiled the 112-foot bust of ‘Adiyogi’ or Lord Shiva at the Isha Yoga Center in Coimbatore. The statue is located in the foothills of Velliangiri Mountains in the Western Ghats.
  • Interesting fact: The bust was unveiled on the occasion of the Maha Shivaratri, a Hindu festival celebrated annually in honour of the god Shiva.
  • The bust of the Adiyogi was built in eight months by an NGO Isha Foundation. The foundation said the iconic 112-ft face of the first yogi was consecrated in celebration of the 112 methods that Lord Shiva offered towards self-transformation.
  • Before inaugurating the metallic statue face of Lord Shiva, Modi visited the Isha yoga centre and attended the Pancha Bhuta Aradhana function.

Bet Dwarka Darshan Circuit to be developed under HRIDAY


  • Union Ministry of Urban Development on 23 February 2017 approved the development of 6-kilometer-long Bet Dwarka Darshan Circuit in Gujarat. The circuit will be developed at an expense of Rs 16.27 crore under the Central Scheme ‘Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY)’.
  • The Bet Dwarka Darshan Circuit that connects the famous Dwarkadish Haveli and Hanuman Dandi was approved by the HRIDAY National Empowered Committee chaired by Rajiv Gauba, Secretary (UD). Hanuman Dandi is the only temple housing Hanumanji and his son Makardhwaj, in Dwarka district of Gujarat.
  • Launched on 21 January 2015, the National Heritage Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY) seek to preserve and rejuvenate the rich cultural heritage of the country. It was launched by the Union Minister of Urban Development M Venkaiah Naidu.

Appointments:

Gopal Baglay appointed MEA Spokesperson


  • Senior diplomat Gopal Baglay was today appointed Spokesperson in the External Affairs Ministry succeeding Vikas Swarup, who was made India's new High Commissioner to Canada. A 1992-batch officer of Indian Foreign Service, Baglay was handling the sensitive PAI (Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran) division in the ministry till now.
  • Apart from Spokesperson, his designation would also be Joint Secretary External Publicity (XP).
  • Baglay has held many key positions including Director, XP, Director PAI and Indian Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan. Mittal, who joined the IFS in 1998, has since served in Bangladesh, Egypt and Israel in various capacities and as Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. His last position was as Joint Secretary in CPV (Consular, Passport and Visa) division.

Awards & Honors:

Oscar Awards 2017 conferred; La La Land won maximum awards


  • The 89th Academy Awards, popularly called Oscar Awards, were conferred on 26 February 2017 (27 February 2017 as per Indian time). The award ceremony was held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, Los Angeles.
  • Comedian Jimmy Kimmel hosted the awards ceremony.
  • The Oscar Awards for the year 2017 were presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) in 24 categories.
  • The nominees for the 89th Oscar Awards were announced on 24 January 2017, via global live stream from the Academy. Movie La La Land received the most nominations with a record-tying fourteen.

    1. Best Picture: Moonlight
    2. Best Actor: Casey Affleck for Manchester by the Sea
    3. Best Actress: Emma Stone for La La Land
    4. Best Director: Damien Chazelle for La La Land
    5. Best Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali for Moonlight
    6. Best Foreign Language Film: The Salesman (Iran) in Persian

World News:

NASA may send robotic spacecraft to Sun in 2018


  • The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to send its first robotic spacecraft to the Sun in 2018.
  • The Solar Probe Plus mission, which is going to be NASA’s first to the Sun, is expected to get within six million kilometres of the Sun to probe its atmosphere.The Sun is about 149 million kilometres from the Earth.
  • According to Eric Christian, a NASA research scientist at the Goddard Space Flight Centre, though the spacecraft would not be able to get to the surface of the Sun it would definitely get close enough to answer three very important questions.

World’s first robot table tennis tutor sets new Guinness World record


  • FORPHEUS, the world’s first robot table tennis tutor has created a new Guinness World Record with its extraordinary technological intelligence and educational capabilities.
  • The Japanese technology has been given the Guinness title for being able to play table tennis way better than most humans.
  • FORPHEUS is short for Future Omron Robotics Technology for Exploring Possibility of Harmonised automation with Sinic Theoretics.
  • It has been developed by Omron Corporation, a leading electronics company based in Kyoto, Japan.
  • According to its lead developer, Taku Oya, the main aim behind the technology is to harmonise humans and robots by teaching table tennis to human players.

Sports News:

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga defeats Lucas Pouille to win 2017 Open 13


  • Second-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on 26 February 2017 defeated Frenchman Lucas Pouille 6-4, 6-4 to win the 2017 Open 13.
  • The final, played in Marseille, France, was Tsonga's ninth victory in a row. He executed seven aces against Pouille and managed to maintain his serve without a break.

John-John Dohmen, Naomi Van named best hockey players of 2016


  • FIH Hockey Stars Awards 2016 were conferred on 23 February 2017 in Chandigarh. This was the first time in the history of Hockey that the ceremony was held to honour the best players, rising stars, goalkeepers, umpires and coaches.
  • Belgium captain John-John Dohmen and Netherlands' Naomi Van were named as male and female International Hockey Federation's (FIH) Player of the Year (2016) awards respectively.
  • The Olympic silver medallists Dohmen and Naomi were handed these awards at a ceremony hosted in Chandigarh.

61 CAVALRY defeats Army Service Corps to win Army Polo Championship


  • 61 CAVALRY on 24 February 2017 bagged the Army Polo Championship. In the finals played in New Delhi, 61 CAVALRY defeated Army Service Corps.
  • The famous Army Polo Championship that commenced on 31 January 2017 saw participation from Corps of Artillery, Remount and Veterinary Corps and Armored Corps.
  • Army has dominated Equestrian Sports for a long time producing a large number of Asian Games medalists, World Cup players, Padam Shree and Arjuna awardees and is pursuing it as part of its Mission Olympics programme. At the same time, the 61 CAVALRY regiment has a polo playing tradition and has produced some of India's best polo players.

Days:

Revolutionary freedom fighter Chandrashekhar Azad’s martyrdom day observed


  • Chandra Shekhar Azad, the Indian revolutionary freedom fighter, was in news on 27 February 2017. He came in news on his 86th martyrdom day.
  • On this occasion, Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid homage to Chandrashekhar Azad. In his tweet, Modi said, we can never forget his valour and ultimate sacrifice for our nation.

Central Excise Day celebrated on 24 February 2017


  • The Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) on 24 February 2017 celebrated the Central Excise Day across the country.
  • To mark the occasion, the Central Excise officers all over the country organized seminars, workshops, trade interactions and cultural events.
  • The Central Excise Day is celebrated every year to commemorate the Central Excise and Salt Act, which was enacted on 24 February 1944.







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