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Great Indian Bustard (GIB) announced as the new mascot for the 13th UN Convention on the CMS COP-13

Union Environment Minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan,on Friday announced the Great Indian Bustard (GIB) as the mascot for the 13th Conference of Parties (COP) of the UN Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species (CMS) to be held in Gujarat in 2020.The Government also launched a website for the COP-13.

CMS-COP 13 is a global platform for the conservation and sustainable use of migratory species and their habitats. It has over 120 participating countries.So far, 12 COPs (Conference of Parties) have been convened.

COP-13 will be held in Gandhinagar, Gujarat from 15 – 22 February, 2020


Union Minister Suresh Prabhu launches two schemes in Mumbai

Union Minister for Commerce and Industry Suresh Prabhu launched two  schemes,the Hirkani Maharashtrachi and District Business Plan Competition in Mumbai.

Under Hirkani Maharashtrachi, women’s SHGs will display their business plan at taluka level. Ten groups will be selected from each taluka and Rs. 50,000 will be given to each SHG to implement their idea.Five SHGs at district level will be selected and Rs. 2 lakh will be given to each SHG to take the idea forward

Under District Business Plan Competition, competitors at district level will display ideas, out of which five ideas will be selected from agriculture, social service, education and Work order worth Rs. 5 lakh will be given to the 5 selected ideas to implement the same.


Health Ministry conducts 8th round of National Deworming Day campaign

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) conducted its eighth round of National Deworming Day (NDD) with a objective to reduce the prevalence of Soil Transmitted Helminths (STH) or parasitic intestinal worms so that there will be no longer be public health problem.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW)envisioned an open-defecation-free India which holds the capacity to reduce the overall worm burden in a community.


Voter verification and Information Programme was launched by Election Commission

Election Commission of India (ECI) launched a Voter Verification and Information Programme (VVIP) for citizens to verify their details, change the details, new registration and corrections. The programme focus on 2019 General Election.

The ECI has set up helpline centres in all districts in India. The voter helpline number is 1950 and they are well equipped with to help callers with latest information.

VVIP technology was launched during 2day training cum workshop on the use of Information and Communication Technology which was held in New Delhi.

Voter Helpline app was also launched which will help voters to check their names in electoral roll, submit online forms, application status checking and complaints filing.



Multinational Maritime Exercise ‘Aman 19’ commenced in Karachi

The 5-day multinational maritime exercise ‘AMAN-19’ in which 46 nations participated from all over the world was formally commenced at Pakistan Navy Dockyard, with a colorful flag hosting ceremony.

Pakistan’s Naval Chief, Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi welcomed the participations of Exercise AMAN-19, the 6th episode of the AMAN initiative.

Principal aim to conduct this exercise is to facilitate a forum of understanding of each other’s maritime concepts and operation cultures and to produce ways and means to confront common threat at sea.

The exercise will have 2 phases- Harbour phase and sea phase.
About Pakistan
♦ Capital- Islamabad
♦ PM- Imran Khan
♦ President- Arif Alvi


Economy and Finance

Asian Development Bank raised $100 million in international market

The Asian Development Bank raised $100 million from peso-linked bonds in the international market. It was their maiden issue of Philippine peso.

The move will help to reduce foreign exchange risk for ADB’s borrowers and support its growing local currency lending operations in Philippines.

J P Morgan was the sole lead manager and bonds were fully placed with institutional investors in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

ADB is an international development finance institution and a regional development bank with a motto to fighting poverty in Asia and the Pacific.
About Asian Development Bank (ADB)
♦ Headquarters: Manila, Philippines
♦ President: Takehiko Nakao


RBI Doubles the limit of bulk deposits from Rs. 1 crore to Rs 2 Crore

Reserve Bank of India decided to treat deposits to over Rs.2 crore as ‘bulk’ as they doubled the limit for the same from the earlier Rs.1crore. This move will enhance operational freedom of Banks.

RBI also proposed banks would maintain their bulk deposits interest rate cards in the core banking system for supervisory review.

The right to offer differential rate of interest in bulk deposits as per their requirements and Asset Liability Management (ALM) projections is vested with banks.


Himachal’s growth rate projected at 7.3% in current financial year

Economic Survey Report for 2018-19 has projected the growth rate in Himachal Pradesh to be around 7.3% for the current financial year, 2018-19, while the per capita income is estimated at Rs 1,76,968. Economic growth was 6.5% in the last fiscal, highest in last 3 years.

Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) in current fiscal has increased to Rs 1,36,542 crore and estimated to be about Rs 1,51,835 crore in 2018-19.
About Himachal Pradesh
♦ Capital – Shimla
♦ Chief Minister – Jai Ram Thakur
♦ Governor – Acharya Dev Vrat



International Paralympics committee lifted ban on Russian athletes

International Paralympics Committee (IPC) lifted the ban on Russian Para athletes under certain conditions. The ban was active since August 2016.

Russian Paralympic Committee was suspended and Russian athlete were banned from Rio de Janeiro Paralympic by IPC on August 2016.

IPC modified the decision as Russian Paralympic Committee had met 69 of the 70  reinstatement criteria outlined in 2016.
About Summer Olympics 2020
♦ Host city: Tokyo, Japan
♦ Motto: Discover Tomorrow
♦ Olympics Mascot: Miraitowa
♦ Paralympic Mascot: Someity
♦ 2024 Summer Olympics host city: Paris, France



Yes Bank wins the Aegis Graham Bell Award 2018 for ‘Innovation in Data Science’

Aegis Graham Bell Award 2018 announced Yes Bank as winner in ‘Innovation in Data Science’ category for their industry-first project ‘Yes EEE (Engage Enrich Excel)’ at PanajiGoa. It was hosted by the Government of Goa.
About Aegis Graham Bell Awards (AGBA)
Promotes innovations and entrepreneurship in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) domain.
About Yes Bank
♦ MD & CEO – Mr. Ajay Kumar
♦ Headquarters – Mumbai


Sena Medals awarded to 92 army men, including Lance Naik Wani

Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh, GOC-in-C (General Officer Commanding), Northern Command, presented Gallantry and Distinguished Service Awards to army officers, other ranks and next of kin (for posthumous awards).

The army commander presented 1 Bar to Sena Medal (Gallantry)76 Sena Medals (Gallantry)7 Sena Medals (Distinguished)and 8 Vishist Seva Medals.

Lance Naik Wani was conferred with the Bar to Sena Medal (Gallantry), received by his wife on his behalf.The brave soldier had sacrificed his life while combating terrorists at Batagund Village in Jammu & Kashmir in November 2018.
Related Point:
♦ Lance Naik Wani is also a recipient of the Ashok Chakra, India’s highest peacetime award.


Deepa Mehta to be feted with Lifetime Achievement award from Canadian Academy

Acclaimed Indo-Canadian filmmaker, Deepa Mehta will be conferred with Lifetime Achievement Award by the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television.

This award will be presented in privilege of Deepa’s enormous impact and impression she has had on the essence of Canada’s entertainment industry.

Deepa Mehta is best known for her trilogy- “Fire”, “Earth” and “Water”.

Deepa Mehta was born in India but she had shifted to Canada in 1973 after her marriage. She is currently engaged on Netflix series “Leila”.
Capital- Ottawa
♦ Currency- Canadian Dollar,
♦ PM- Justin Trudeau


Radheyshyam Julaniya to replace Rahul Bhatnagar as Union Sports Secretary

IAS officer (Madhya Pradesh cadre), Radheyshyam Julaniya will replace Rahul Bhatnagar as the Union Sports Secretary.

Bhatnagar has been released by the Sports Ministry and is set to join the Ministry on Panchayati Raj.

Notable achievements of the Sports Ministry during the tenure of Mr. Rahul Bhatnagar include opening of the National Sports UniversityKhelo India Youth Games, hosting international tournaments like Hockey World Cup in Bhubaneshwar and World Women’s Boxing Championship in New Delhi.


Helicopter-launched anti-tank missile ‘Helina’ test-fired in Balasore, Odisha

India test-fired Helina, a helicopter-launched version of the Nag anti-tank guided missile, with a hit range of 7-8 km, from the Odisha Coast on Friday.

Helina was launched from an Army chopper and the weapon system was tested for its full range at 12:55 PM near the Integrated Test Range in Chandipur in the Balasore District of Odisha.

Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), Helina is said to be one of the most advanced anti-tank weapons in the world. It is guided by an Infrared Imaging Seeker (IIR) operating in the lock-on-before-launch mode.
Related point:
♦ On July 13, 2015, 3 round trials of Helina were conducted at Jaisalmer, Rajasthan. It was also test-fired from Rudra helicopter at Pokhran Test Range on August 19, 2018.




A toll free cleft helpline number was launched on National Cleft Day

On 8th February 2019,India’s first toll free national cleft helpline named Smile Train India cleft Helpline launched by Smile Train India on National Cleft Day.

The number 18001038301 is accessible to people throughout India and they can receive 100% free, quality and safe cleft treatment.

It will create awareness about cleft surgery support by Smile Train and their partner hospitals across India.

 Leading specialist in oral health care GSK consumer Health Care Ltd has support Smile Train to provide cleft treatment and aimed to ensure more children get quality treatment and care.


Thought of the Day

“Worry is a misuse of the imagination.”

Quiz based on Daily Current Affairs 9th February 2019

Take Quiz


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