Daily Current Affairs 21st February, 2017
India, Rwanda sign MoUs in innovation, aviation and visa requirements
- India and Rwanda have inked three agreements in the fields of innovation, aviation and visa requirements to boost bilateral relations.
- These agreements were signed in Kigali in the presence of Vice President Mohammed Hamid Ansari and Rwandan Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi during a business forum meet. Vice President is the first Indian leader to officially visit Rwanda.
- He launched India-Rwanda innovation growth programme.
US President,Donald Trump appoints Lt. Gen. Herbert Raymond McMaster as new National Security Advisor
- US President Donald Trump has appointed Lt Gen Herbert Raymond McMaster as his new National Security Advisor following the ouster of Michael Flynn last week.
Government launches SAATHIYA Resource Kit and SAATHIYA SALAH mobile app for adolescents
- The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has launched SAATHIYA Resource Kit and SAATHIYA SALAH mobile app for adolescents as part of the Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karyakram (RKSK) programme.
- The kit and app will help Peer Educators (Saathiyas) who are introduced under the RKSK programme. The Saathiyas act as catalyst for generating demand for adolescent health services and also impart age appropriate knowledge on key adolescent health issues to their peer groups.
- The Resource Kit has been developed by United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and Population Foundation of India (PFI). The kit comprises i) Activity Book, ii) Bhranti-Kranti Game iii) Question-Answer Book and iv) Peer Educator Diary. It has been designed to present the Peer Educators with key information on adolescent health, which would then enable them to communicate the same and help the adolescents at the grass root/village level’.
- To address and cater to the health and development needs of the country’s adolescents, Health Ministry had launched RKSK in January 2014.
- RKSK identifies six strategic priorities for adolescents — nutrition, sexual and reproductive health (SRH), non-communicable diseases (NCDs), substance misuse, injuries and violence (including gender-based violence) and mental health.
Shurhozelie Liezeitsu elected new Nagaland CM
- Nagaland People’s Front (NPF) president Shurhozelie Liezeitsu will be sworn in as the state’s eleventh Chief Minister.
- As Nagaland Former Chief Minister T R Zeliang stepped down from the post on February 19, 2017 facing revolt from his party MLAs against the decision to reserve 33% seats for women in urban local bodies.
Bharat QR code launched to push less-cash economy
- Bharat QR code the world’s first inter-operable payment acceptance solution, was launched as part of efforts to move towards less-cash economy at an insignificant cost, according to RBI.
- Payment networks such as MasterCard and Visa have joined hands with NPCI to launch Bharat QR, a common Quick Response(QR) code that would enable seamless digital payments without card swiping machines.
- Built under the direction of the Reserve Bank of India in September 2016 . This Bharat QR code is expected to be convenient for those who are into mobile banking and do not want to use debit or credit cards for small ticket payments. Bharat QR code is seen as a better alternative to physical Point-of-Sale (PoS) machines which involves capital costs.
- Unlike digital wallets where payments are received from e-wallets, through QR code your payments will directly get received in your bank accounts.
- Although various private companies and banks already have this facility in their mobile app, but what makes this QR code different from others is that it is interoperable with all the banks and it is not a closed-loop system.
- BharatQR is developed by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), Mastercard, and Visa, to expedite India’s transition to a less-cash society.
- NPCI, which is a government-owned body and regulated by RBI, will look after the overall transfer of payment mechanism through this QR code as well. Earlier, NPCI has already successfully launched its UPI app and USSD feature for making payments.
- With the launch of India QR code and BHIM app, various companies may see a downturn in their businesses, who saw their businesses grow multifold after the demonetisation.
State Bank of India website gets a new avatar
- Country’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) has rebranded its corporate website as “bank.sbi” from the earlier sbi.co.in. Bank.sbi is the highest domain protocol, known as generic top level domain (gTLD).
- The adoption of gTLD enables an organisation to use its corporate name .sbi as their website’s top-level identifier instead of using a more traditional “.com” or “.co.in” domains
MoU signed for welfare of Handicraft Artisans belonging to Scheduled Castes
- The Union Ministry of Textiles and Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment have signed MoU to step up interventions for the welfare and economic development of scheduled caste artisans.
- The MoU was signed between Development Commissioner (Handicrafts), Ministry of Textiles and National Scheduled Castes Finance and Development Corporation (NSFDC), a CPSU under Ministry of Social Justice.
ENVIRONMENT,SCIENCE AND TECH
Government announces expansion of rotavirus vaccine in 5 states
- The Union Government has announced the expansion of rotavirus vaccine in five additional states under Universal Immunisation Programme (UIP).
- They are Assam, Tripura, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu. The announcement comes after 38 lakh children were vaccinated when the vaccine was first introduced in four states – Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.
- Rotavirus is the most common cause of diarrhoeal disease among infants and young children.
- It is a genus of double-stranded RNA viruses in the family Reoviridae. Nearly every child in the world is infected with rotavirus at least once by the age of five.
International Mother Language Day
- UNESCO celebrates International Mother Language Day (IMLD) on February 21, 2017 under the theme “Towards Sustainable Futures through Multilingual Education”.
- To foster sustainable development, learners must have access to education in their mother tongue and in other languages.
- It is through the mastery of the first language or mother tongue that the basic skills of reading, writing and numeracy are acquired. Local languages, especially minority and indigenous, transmit cultures, values and traditional knowledge, thus playing an important role in promoting sustainable futures.
- International Mother Language Day has been being observed since 2000 to promote peace and multilingualism. The date corresponds to the day in 1952 when students from the University of Dhaka, Jagannath College and Dhaka Medical College, demonstrating for the recognition of Bengali as one of the two national languages of East Pakistan, were brutally shot dead by police (then under Pakistan government) near the Dhaka High Court in the capital of present-day Bangladesh.
EDII wins International Mercury Award 2016-17
- The Ahmedabad-based Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India (EDII), an acknowledged national resource institute for entrepreneurship education, research, training and institution-building, has received the prestigious International Mercury Awards (IMA) for the year 2016-17 for the best overall presentation of its 2015-2016 annual report.
Hindi novelist Ved Prakash Sharma passes away
- Famous Hindi novelist Ved Prakash Sharma was passed away in Meerut, Uttar Pradesh on February 18, 2017
V Ramakrishnan appointed as TCS CFO, N Chandrasekaran named TCS Chairman too
- Tata Sons Chairman designate Natarajan Chandrasekaran will also hold the chairmanship of the group’s crown jewel Tata Consultancy Services .