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Daily Current Affairs for 1st March 2018 ( English)

Important Days:

1.       Feb 28 – National science day is celebrated every year to mark the discovery of Raman effect by Sir C.V. Raman on 28th Feb 1928.He was honoured with the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1930. The theme for National Science Day 2018 is “Science and Technology for a sustainable future.”
2.       March 1-   National Civil Accounts Day.  This year marks the 42nd year of celebration of this day. It was started from March 1,1976

Tamil Nadu:

1.       Kanchi Periyaval Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamigal passed away on 28th Feb 2018  due to respiratory illness  at a private  hospital in Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu. He is 69th head of the Kanchi Math. He was born in 1935 in Irulneeki Village, Thiruvarur district. His original name is Subramaniam. He was brought up in Villupuram. He had his schoolings in Villupuram. He became the head of the kanchi Math in 1994.
2.       India’s first defence industrial quadrilateral corridor  ‘Quad’ linking Chennai with four other cities(Hosur, Coimbatore, Salem and Tiruchirappalli) of Tamil Nadu is in process by the Union Defence ministry  to promote industries manufacturing weapons and military equipments. it is important to note that while presenting Union Budget 2018, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had announced that two defence industrial production corridors will be set up in India to promote domestic defence industry.PM Modi also announced that the other defence industrial corridor will come up in the Bundelkhand region which shall bring an investment of Rs 20000 crore.
3.       Former Supreme Court Judge S.Rathnavel Pandian passed away due to  illness in T.nagar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu on 28th Feb 2018. He was born on Feb 13,1929 in Thirupadaimarudhur, Tirunelvi district. He was Supreme Court judge from 1988 -1994. After his retirement from Supreme Court, he served as chairperson of the National Commission for Backward Classes.

National:
1.       Country’s one of its kind aviation multi skill development centre in Chandigarh was inaugurated by the Union Civil Aviation Minister, P. Ashok Gajapathi Raju. It is an initiative of Airports Authority of India (AAI) under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and has been set up by the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and the Aerospace and Aviation Sector Skill Council of India. It is equipped with modern training infrastructure to supplement an industry-relevant course curriculum.
2.       7th meeting of Eminent Persons Group (EPG) on Nepal-India relations was held in Kathmandu, Nepal.
3.       A multivendor e-commerce website and mobile app named ‘marinefishsales’ to help fishermen to sell their products and marine catch directly to the customers was developed by Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI).
4.       Haryana State Cabinet Meeting chaired by Chief Minister, Manohar Lal Khattar approved death penalty or rigorous imprisonment of not less than 14 years  for rape of victim aged 12 or less. The proposal that has been approved, also contains several amendments in existing criminal laws related to sexual offences. The amendments seek harsher punishments for sexual offences.
5.       The Union Ministry of Commerce’s  proposal to give focused attention to 12 identified Champion Services Sectors for promoting their development and realizing their potential was approved by the Union Cabinet. The 12 identified Champion Services Sectors are  Information Technology (IT) & IT enabled Services (ITeS), Tourism and Hospitality Services, Transport and Logistics Services, Medical Value Travel, Accounting Services, Financial Services, Audio Visual Services, Communication Services, Legal Services, Construction and Related Engineering Services, Education services and Environmental Services. For this purpose, a dedicated fund of Rs 5000-crore has allotted to support initiatives for sectoral action plans of the Champion Sectors.
6.       The Union Government has announced a significant reduction in airfares for devotees travelling to Saudi Arabia. The prices of the round tickets have been slashed by a minimum of Rs 20,000 to Rs 97,000. Around 18 to 49 per cent reduction in rates will be available on tickets for Jeddah and Medina on national carrier Air India, Saudia and Flynas, an air carrier based in Saudi Arabia. The move seeks to address concerns about airfares going up after the Haj subsidy was abolished last month by the government. 
7.       The Union Rural Development Ministry has sanctioned funds worth more than Rs 700 crore for the construction of 43 roads and 15 bridges under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) in Arunachal Pradesh. 
8.       The Union Ministry of Railways has decided to  allow visually impaired candidates to appear in its recruitment examinations. This decision was informed to Delhi High Court  to allow such candidates against its 90,000 vacancies. The ministry also said that it will issue a fresh notification in this regard.
9.       The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) chaired by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has approved various procurement proposals for three services estimated at about Rs. 9,435 crore. The three services includes  of 41,000 light machine guns (LMGs) and over 3.5 lakh close quarter battle (CQB) carbines, High-capacity radio relay (HCRR) and two Pollution control vessels (PCV)

International:

1.       An MoU signed between India and Jordan on cooperation in the field of Health & Medical  Science was approved by the Union Cabinet.  A Working Group will be set up to to oversee the implementation of this MoU and further elaborate the details of cooperation.
2.       The Union Cabinet has  approved the proposal for signing of MoU on Cooperation in the Field of Manpower between India and Jordan. It aims at enhancing collaboration between two countries in promoting best practices in administration of contractual employment.
3.       An MoU between India and Jordan for mining and beneficiation of Rock Phosphate and Muriate of Phosphate (MOP). The MoU will ensure consistent supply of raw material, intermediaries and finish Phosphatic and Potassic (P&K) fertilizers to cater to needs of country at a reasonable price. It also approved setting up production facility in Jordan for Phosphoric Acid/NPK/DAP Fertilizers with long term agreement for 100% off-take to India.
4.       The Union Cabinet has approved signing and ratifying Agreement between India and Jordan on Cooperation and Mutual Administrative Assistance in Customs matters. The Agreement will provide legal framework for sharing of information and intelligence between Customs authorities of two countries and help in proper application of Customs laws, prevention and investigation of Customs offences and facilitation of legitimate trade.
5.       FATF (Financial Action Task Force) has decided to put Pakistan back on “grey list,” subjecting it to direct monitoring and intense scrutiny by the International Co-operation Review. Group (ICRG) on terror financing, pending further review in June 2018. The FATF decision was by consensus, after days of closed-door discussions within the 37-member group.The impact of grey list is that it will endanger Pakistan’s handful of remaining banking links to t outside world, causing real financial pain to the economy. It will squeeze Pakistan’s economy and make it harder to meet its mounting foreign financing needs, including potential future borrowings from International Monetary Fund (IMF).
6.       The local authority in a small south-western German village voted on February 26, 2018 to decide the fate of Nazi-era bell with the inscription "Everything for the Fatherland - Adolf Hitler". The votes, 10 to 3, determined that the bell should continue to hang in the village’s local church. The local council rejected calls by some residents for the bell to be dismantled, and turned down an offer by the local Protestant church to bear the cost of installing a new one.


Science & Technology:

1. Indigenously developed Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGM) Nag was successfully test-fired in desert conditions against two tank targets at different ranges and timings. With this, the developmental trials of Nag missile have been completed and it is now ready for induction. The Nag missile is third generation ATMG which works on “fire and forget” principle. It has operational range of 500m to 4km (Land version) and 7-10km (when air-launched). It is equipped with highly advanced Imaging Infrared Radar (IRR) seeker along with integrated avionics. ATMG Nag is one of five missile systems developed indigenously by DRDO under integrated guided missile development programme (IGMDP). The other four missiles are Agni, Akash, Trishul and Prithvi. It is manufactured by India’s sole missile producer, state-owned Bharat Dynamics Limited.


Economy/Banking:

1.       India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is estimated to grow at 7.6% in the calendar year 2018 according to the report of Moody’s Investors Service. It has stated that Indian economy is slowly recovering from the negative impact caused by demonetisation and also by the disruption of Goods and Services tax (GST) roll out. It has estimated that Indian economy will grow at 7.5% for  the calendar year 2018-19.
2.       Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has made it mandatory to file online claims for provident fund (PF) withdrawals above Rs 10 lakh. On line claims for withdrawals of above Rs 5 lakh under the Employees Pension Scheme 1995 has also been made mandatory.
3.       India’s manufacturing sector activity fell to four-month low in February 2018 as factory output and new business orders rose at slower pace according to Nikkei India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI). The monthly PMI fell to 52.1 in February 2018 from 52.4 in January 2018 indicating modest improvement in operating conditions. A reading above 50 on index denotes expansion and less than that indicates contraction in activities.
4.       The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved proposal to double guarantee to Rs. 19,000 crore from earlier Rs 9,500 crore to National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) for obtaining credit from banks for procurement of pulses and oilseeds at the support price. The CCEA also approved Government Guarantee up to Rs. 45 crore to the Small Farmers Agri-Business Consortium (SFAC) for meeting its existing liability and settlement of extant claims.
5.       The Core sector growth has grown at faster pace of 6.7% in January 2018 against 3.4% in January 2017 according to the index of eight core industries released by Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Cumulatively, the growth in eight core sectors during April-January this fiscal slowed to 4.3% as against 5.1% in the same period last fiscal. In India, the eight core sectors are coal, crude oil, natural gas, petroleum refinery products, fertilisers, steel, cement and electricity.

Military Exercises:

1.       Lamitye 2018 – The 8th edition of this joint military exercise was conducted between the armies of India and Seychelles in Mahe Island, Seychelles.

Appointments/Resignations:

1. Sudhir Tripathi ( IAS officer of 1984 batch ) was appointed as the  new chief secretary of Jharkhand. He replaced Rajbala Verma.

Sports:


1.  Tennis Star Roger Federer ( Switzerland) won the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year and Comeback of the Year awards at the 2018 Laureus World Sports Awards, in Monaco. He is the one who received more Laureus awards. In the yaer 2017 he had won had won the Australian Open and Wimbledon titles.  Tennis Player Serena Williams ( USA)also won  the World Sportswoman of the Year award in Women’s category . She had won her 23rd grand slam in 2017.

Prepared by
Sarala Dhavamanoharan
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