Thursday, 2 February 2017

Daily Current Affairs-GK Update 2nd February 2017

Current Affairs and GK Update 2nd February 2017
1. 19th Bharat Rang Mahotsav begins in New Delhi:
  • The 21-day 19th edition Bharat Rang Mahotsav has begun in New Delhi with the special focus on the different genres of Indian theater.
  • NSD brings together all the theater people of India and abroad through Bharat Rang Mahotsav.
  • The festival will include 10 traditional folk theater performances.
  • The festival will feature Living Legend Series, Master Classes, Youth Forum and Director's Meet as an integral part of this theater fiesta.
  • Bharat Rang Mahotsav is the annual theatre festival of National School of Drama (NSD), New Delhi.
2. India, Russia holds high-level consultations on counter-terrorism:
  • India and Russia have held high-level consultations on counter-terrorism issues in New Delhi.
  • Both sides shared views and assessment on the threats posed by increasing terrorist activities including India’s concern on state-sponsored, cross-border terrorism. 
  • The Indian delegation was led by Preeti Saran, Secretary (East) in the Union Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) while the Russian delegation was headed by Deputy Foreign Minister Mr. Oleg V. Syromolotov.
3. Kuwait imposes visa ban on Pakistan, 4 other Muslim countries:
  • Issuance of visas for nationals of Syria, Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran has been suspended by Kuwait.
  • Kuwait was the only nation to prohibit the entry of Syrian nationals prior to Trump's executive action. 
  • A group of terrorists bombed a Shia mosque in 2015, killing 27 Kuwaiti nationals.
4. Arun jaitley unveils education reforms, to set up National Testing Agency:
  • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley unleashed measures to revamp the country's education system, including setting up of a National Testing Agency to conduct all entrance examinations for higher education institutions.
  • Unveiling the budgetary proposals for 2017-18 in Parliament, Jaitley stated that government proposes to establish a National Testing Agency as an autonomous and self-sustained premier testing organisation to conduct all entrance examinations for higher education institutions.
  • This would free CBSE, AICTE and other premier institutions from these administrative responsibilities so that they can focus more on academics.
  • The government proposes to leverage information technology and launch the SWAYAM platform with at least 350 online courses.
5. Chandrababu Naidu inaugurates Polavaram Project Works:
  • The Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh N Chandrababu Naidu has launched the construction works of crest gates of the Polavaram project.
  • He performed puja at the diaphragm wall site to mark the launch of works.
  • The project will be taken up with the special technology from Germany, for the construction of 48 crest gates.
  • Polavaram Project is a multi-purpose irrigation project which has been accorded national project status by the central government.
6. Rupak Kumar Dutta appointed as DGP of Karnataka:
  • Rupak Kumar Dutta has been appointed as the new Police Chief of Karnataka.
  • He succeeded Om Prakash, who retiring from service on superannuation.
  • Dutta will hold the post for a period of 9 months (October 2017).
  • He was on a central posting as Special Secretary (Internal Security) in the Ministry of Home Affairs.
7. New TAMO sub-brand to be launched by Tata Motors:
  • A new brand called TAMO is all set to be launched by Tata Motors Ltd.
  • The sub-brand will incubate new technologies and make cars to meet expectations of consumers.
  • The first car under the TAMO brand will be launched at the Geneva Motor show in March, 2017.
8. Medals for Tokyo 2020 Games to be made from recycled mobile phones:
  • Olympic and Paralympic medals for the Tokyo 2020 Games will be made from recycled mobile phones.
  • Members of Japan's Olympic organizing committee gave the idea to the government officials and companies.
  • The Japanese public will be asked to donate old phones and small appliances to gather two tonnes of gold, silver, and bronze for the 5,000 medals.
  • Earlier, Olympic host cities have traditionally obtained the metal from mining firms.
9. Researchers Discover Oldest Human Ancestor:
  • Researchers have discovered microscopic sea animal Saccorhytus, the earliest known ancestor of humans along with a vast range of other species. 
  • The exquisitely well preserved fossilised traces of this 540-million-year-old creature were discovered. 
  • This balloon-like sea is the earliest known step on the evolutionary path that led to fish and eventually to humans.  
  • Saccorhytus is the most primitive example of deuterostomes, a category of animals which are common ancestors of a broad range of species, including vertebrates (backboned animals
10. Rex Tillerson sworn-in as US secretary of state:
  • The former chairman and chief executive of Exxon Mobil Rex Tillerson (64-year) has been sworn in as Secretary of State of US President Donald Trump.
  • Tillerson was cleared for full Senate approval in a 56-43 vote.
  • The vote came after Senate Republicans changed the rules in order to approve Mr Trump's nominees for health and treasury, despite a Democratic boycott.
11. British PM Theresa May receives UK Parliament's approval to begin Brexit process:
  • The British PM Theresa May has received Parliament's first stage approval to begin the process of Britain's exit from the European Union (EU) after winning a crucial vote in the House of Commons.
  • Earlier, British MPs voted in favor of the European Union (Notification of withdrawal) Bill.
  • 498 MPs voted in favor of Brexit Bill, while 114 voted against it.
12. Govt proposes Payments Regulatory Board in RBI:
  • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has proposed creation of a six-member Payments Regulatory Board in the RBI, headed by RBI Governor Urjit Patel as part of bringing about structural reforms in the payment eco-system.
  • For the purpose, necessary amendments are proposed in the Finance Bill 2017 to create a Payments Regulatory Board in the Reserve Bank of India by replacing the existing Board for Regulation and Supervision of Payment and Settlement Systems.
  • In his Budget Speech, Jaitley stated a Committee on Digital Payments constituted by Department of Economic Affairs has recommended structural reforms in the payment eco system, including amendments to the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007.
13. Air India to get Rs. 1,800 cr from govt in 2017-2018:
  • National carrier Air India will receive Rs 1,800 crore as equity infusion in 2017-18 under the government’s ongoing financial assistance and the amount is slightly higher than the allocation for 2016-2017. 
  • The allocation has been made in the Union Budget for 2017-18, which was presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
  • For 2016-17, the government had allocated Rs 1,713 crore to the airline against a demand of Rs 3,911 crore.
  • The government-owned airline has been allocated Rs 1,800 crore as part of the Rs 30,0231 crore financial bailout package.
14. Eminent theater personality Asim Basu passes away:
  • Eminent theater personality Asim Basu (82-year) has passed away after a prolonged illness.
  • He was closely associated with the art and culture scene of Odisha for over five decades and directed over 200 plays.
  • He had performed in films like Jaga Balia, Dadagiri and many others.
  • Basu has received the state Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1998.

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