Weekly Current Affairs (18th February 2019 – 23th February 2019)

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1. Rajnath Singh Launches Pan-India Number 112 For Women Safety. Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi launched a range of citizen safety initiatives in New Delhi.
2. The Union Minister Suresh Prabhu has launched SWAYATT initiative and Start-up Runway in New Delhi.
3. Under ‘Make in India’ initiative, Indian Railways has created history by converting a diesel locomotive into electric locomotive for the first time in the world. This all new converted energy-efficient electric locomotive has been flagged off by PM Narendra Modi in Varanasi.
4. The Cabinet approved the launch of Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM).
5. The Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry launched Operation Digital Board on the lines of Operation Blackboard to provide better digital education in school.
6. President Ram Nath Kovind promulgated 4 Ordinances on 21 Feb 2019.
7. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the launch of ‘Kisan Urja Suraksha Evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan’ (KUSUM Yojana) with the objective of providing financial and water security to farmers.


1. According to the Finance minister Arun Jaitley, India has raised the basic customs duty to 200% on all goods imported from Pakistan with immediate effect.
2. On 18 February 2019, Argentina became the 72nd country to sign the Framework Agreement of the International Solar Alliance (ISA).
3. US President Donald Trump has signed an executive order to establish its Space Force as a new armed service within the Department of Air Force.
4. Chinese news agency Xinhua unveiled the world’s first female AI news anchor Xin Xiaomeng.
5. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has declared a year-long state of emergency, dissolving his cabinet and local governments throughout the country.

Economy and Business

1. The Reserve Bank of India (RBi) will transfer an interim surplus of 28,000 crore rupees to the central government for the half-year (ended 31st December 2018).
2. The Ministry of Commerce and Industry in an attempt to provide relief to and boost investments into start-ups in India has decided to simplify the process for them to get exemptions under the Income Tax Act, 1961.
3. Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation has hiked interest rate on employees’ provident fund to 8.65% from 8.55% for the 2018-19 fiscal year.
4. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) formed a 4-member committee, headed by income tax commissioner Sanjeev Sharma, to look into the matter of taxation related pain points and submit its final report and recommendations by mid-March.

1. Saina Nehwal won her fourth title at the Yonex-Sunrise 83rd Senior Nationals.
2. West Indian left-hander batsman Chris Gayle (39-year) has announced that he will retire from One-day Internationals after the forthcoming World Cup.
3. Sunil Chhetri was conferred the first ever Football Ratna honour by Football Delhi.
4. Elise Merten, world number 21 from Belgium beat world number 3, Simona Halep to win the Qatar Open held in Doha, Qatar.
5. Malaysia’s 8-time World Champion Nicol David has announced that she will call time on her record-breaking career at the end of the 2018/19 season.
6. The Union Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Rathore has inaugurated the International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF) World Cup in New Delhi.
7. Commonwealth Games 2014 gold medallist Apurvi Chandela broke the women’s 10m Air Rifle category world record to clinch India’s first gold medal at the New Delhi World Cup on Saturday.

1. Sudanese refugee, Abdul Aziz Muhammad, who spent 5 years in the Australian detention centre on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea, was given the Martin Ennals Award 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland, for exposing “the very cruel asylum seeker policy of the Australian Government”.
2. Mallakhamb coach, Uday Deshpande, and batswoman, Smriti Mandhana, were awarded the Maharashtra State Government’s Shiv Chhatrapati Award by the State’s Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao at an event held at the Gateway of India, Mumbai.
3. Today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi received the prestigious Seoul Peace Prize – 2018 for his contribution to international cooperation and fostering global economic growth.
4. 33-year-old Ashoka University teacher and Wipro Sustainable Fellow, Divya Karnad became the First Indian Woman to be honoured with the ‘Future for Nature Award’ for her work on marine conservation.

1. Shri Pramod Chandra Mody (Indian Revenue Service (Income Tax cadre)- 1982-batch) has been appointed as the new chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes.
2. The West Bengal government has appointed Additional Director General (ADG) of West Bengal Police (law and order) Anuj Sharma (IPS officer-1991-batch) as the new Kolkata Police Commissioner, replacing Rajeev Kumar.
3. The Supreme Court appointed a retired judge of the court Justice D.K. Jain as the first ombudsman under the new BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) Constitution approved by the court in a judgment.
4. PayU India appointed Anirban Mukherjee as Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
5. Ajay Singh, president of the Boxing Federation of India has been selected as the president of the Foundation Board for Better Boxing of AIBA (International Boxing Association).

Important Days
1. The birth anniversary of Maratha Warrior King ‘Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’ is being celebrated on 19th February in all over Maharashtra.
2. The birth anniversary of Sant Ravidas (the founder of Bhakti movement) is being celebrated on 19th February 2019, across the country.
3. The United Nations’ (UN) World Day of Social Justice is annually observed on 20th February to encourage people to look at how social justice affects poverty eradication.
4. International Mother Language Day is being observed every year on the 21st of February (since February 2000) to promote linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism.

Science and Tech
1. Israel is to launch its first moon mission, sending an unmanned spacecraft to collect data to be shared with NASA. According to a report, the 585-kilogram Beresheet (Genesis) spacecraft is to lift off atop a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida.
2. AntBot is the first walking robot to have navigational capabilities without GPS or mapping.
3. Dr.G C Anupama became the first woman of the country to be elected President of the Astronomical Society of India (ASI).
4. The ‘ATL Drone module: Get, Set, go’ for Atal Tinkering Labs was launched at the ongoing Aero India 2019 in Bengaluru.

1. Indian Air Force conducted mega exercise ‘Vayu Shakti’ in Pokhran, Rajasthan.
2. Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani unveiled the first Iranian made semi-heavy submarine named ‘Fateh’ (‘Conqueror’ in Persian), capable of being fitted with missiles, as per the reporting on Iran’s state TV.
3. In a major boost for the Navy’s firepower, the Defence Ministry has approved the acquisition of more than 100 heavyweight torpedoes which will be equipped on the force’s six Scorpene-class submarines being built at Mazagon Dockyards in Mumbai.
4. Badminton player PV Sindhu has become the first woman to fly in made-in-India Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas.


1. 77 years old Swiss actor, Bruno Ganz who is famous for his role of German dictator, Adolf Hitler in the Oscar-nominated film Downfall, passed away in Zurich, Switzerland due to Colon Cancer.
2. The best-selling British author Andrea Levy, who explored the experience of Jamaican British people in a series of novel over 20 years, has died from cancer at the age of 62.
3. Climate scientist Wallace Smith Broecker, who popularised the term “global warming” has passed away in New York. Eighty-seven-year-old Columbia University professor breathed his last at a New York City hospital.
4. American military veteran and novelist, William E. Butterworth III, better known as W.E.B. Griffin (his pen name), passed away at the age of 89.
5. Noted Hindi writer Namvar Singh passed away in New Delhi.
6. Veteran Bollywood producer and father of filmmaker Sooraj Barjatya, Raj Kumar Barjatya passed away in Mumbai.
7. Akhil Bhartiya Sant Samiti chief and campaigner for construction of Ram Temple, Jagadguru Hansdevacharya, was killed in a road accident in Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao on Friday.

1. The Himachal Pradesh Assembly passed a Bill to make Sanskrit the second official language of the state.
2. The Telangana state government has announced to create two more districts (Narayanpet and Mulugu) in the state.
3. Cyber Prevention Awareness and Detection (CyPAD) Centre and the National Cyber Forensic Lab (NCFL) were inaugurated by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and LG Anil Baijal in Dwarka, New Delhi.
4. K.J. Alphons, Union Minister for Tourism inaugurated the project ‘Development of Eco Circuit: Pathanamthitta – Gavi – Vagamon – Thekkady’ in Kerala.
5. ‘KALIA Chhatra Bruti’ scholarship for the children of farmers benefited under the KALIA scheme was launched by the Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in Bhubaneshwar, Odisha.
6. Today, Justice Uma Nath Singh has taken oath as the First Lokayukta of Nagaland for a term of five years or till, age of 70-years.
7. The Odisha Cabinet approved the ‘Khushi ‘scheme to provide free sanitary napkins to school girls across the state.


1. A book dedicated to Late eminent Vedanti Swami Pragyanandji was launched by Governor of West Bengal H.E Keshari Nath Tripathi.
2. West Bengal Governor ‘Keshari Nath Tripathi’ and Swami Chidanand Saraswati (Head of Parmarth Ashram) have jointely launched book ‘Simplicity & Wisdom’ at Parmarth Ashram in Kumbh Mela, Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh.
3. The world’s largest bee, Flying Bulldog, was rediscovered in a remote part of Indonesia in its first sighting in nearly 40 years on 21 February 2019.
4. A small brown rat of bramble cay melomys species lived on a tiny island off northern Australia becomes the world’s first mammal to have become extinct due to “human-induced climate change”.

1. An MoU was signed between Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) and University of British Columbia (UBC), Canada for next 10 years in New Delhi.

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