Get to know the most important news and happenings of the week (8th to 14th feb). It will help you in your preparation for General Awareness.
1. Union Ministry of Heavy Industries on 15 February 2016 unveiled National Capital Goods Policy 2016. The policy, with the theme Building India of Tomorrow, seeks to achieve the vision of Make in India initiative and establish India as a global manufacturing hub by unlocking the potential for capital goods sector.
2. The Union Ministry of Finance on 16 February 2016 announced changes to regulations that govern interest rates on various National Saving Schemes (NSSs). The changes primarily focused on aligning interest rates on NSSs with other comparable saving instruments so that the operation of NSSs will become market oriented. The changes, which will come into effect from 1 April 2016, were announced in the interest of overall economic growth of the country, even while protecting their social objectives and promoting long term savings.
3. Union Cabinet on 17 February 2016 approved Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) of the World Trade Organization (WTO). It approved the Notification of Commitments, its ratification and acceptance of the Instrument of Acceptance of Protocol of TFA to the WTO Secretariat. India is the 71st country to give nod to the agreement that seeks to ease customs procedures to boost commerce.
4. State-run equipment maker Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) on 18 February 2016 commissioned a 270 MW generation unit at the Goindwal Sahib Thermal Power Project of private producer GVK Power & Infra in Punjab. Thermal sets of 270 MW rating are in-house improvisations of the 210/250 MW sets supplied by the company earlier, which currently form the backbone of the Indian power sector and have been performing much above the national average as well as international benchmarks.
1. Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk led government in Ukraine on 16 February 2016 survived a no-confidence vote hours after the President Petro Poroshenko asked him to step down. The no-confidence motion required 226 votes in the parliament, but only 194 out of the 339 members of the parliament supported it. This means the government will probably be safe at least until the next parliament session starts in September 2016.
2. United Nations on 16 February 2016 said that the Syrian government has approved humanitarian access to seven besieged areas. According to the UN, almost half a million people live in besieged areas. The seven areas are those deemed by the 17-member International Syria Support Group to be most in need of relief. These seven areas are
• Deir el-Zour, a city in the east under siege from so-called Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS)
• Foah and Kefraya, in northern Idlib province that is besieged by rebels
• Madaya, Kafr Batna, Muadhamiya, and Zabadani, all in rural Damascus area that is under siege from government forces
3. Indian Navy and Myanmar Navy on 16 February 2016 signed Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for India-Myanmar Coordinated Patrol (IMCOR) at the Tri-Service Headquarters in Port Blair, Andaman and Nicobar Islands. With this signing of SOP, Myanmar became the third country with which India has signed a formal agreement for maritime coordinated patrols.
4. The World Bank Group on 18 February 2016 announced 150 million US dollars in funding to combat Zika virus in Latin America and the Caribbean. The funding is aimed at supporting the countries in the region that are projected to incur losses up to 3.5 billion US dollars or 0.06 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2016 due to the spread of Zika virus.
1. The Supreme Court on 15 February 2016 upheld the Union Government’s Command Exit Model (CEM) of preferential promotion. The 2009 CEM aimed at lowering the age of battalion and brigade commanders as well as improvement in career aspirations of military officers. While upholding the CEM, the apex court bench of Chief Justice TS Thakur and Kurian Joseph directed the Union Government to create 141 additional posts of colonel for combat support stream to accommodate officers who are eligible for promotions.
2. Union Urban Development Miniser M Venkaiah Naidu on 15 February 2016 announced the results of Swachh Survekshan 2016 survey. Under the Swachh Survekshan 2016, 73 cities were surveyed for cleanliness and categorized based on the marks scored by each of them. Out of the 73 cities, while Mysuru in Karnataka was adjudged as the cleanest city, Dhanbad in Jharkand was adjudged as the least clean city.
3. The Union Cabinet on 17 February 2016 gave its approval to amend Section 11 of the Delimitation Act, 2002 and Section 9 of the Representation of the People Act, 1950. This approval will enable the Election Commission to carry out limited delimitation of Assembly and Parliamentary Constituencies in the Cooch Behar District of West Bengal. This became necessary consequent upon the exchange of 51 Bangladeshi enclaves and 111 Indian enclaves respectively between India and Bangladesh with effect from 31 July 2015.
4. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 18 February 2016 launched the guidelines for operationalization of the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY). The guidelines were issued at a farmers’ convention in Sherpur village of Madhya Pradesh. The PMFBY is a path breaking scheme for crop insurance and was approved by the Union Cabinet on 13 January 2016.
1. Ronnie O'Sullivan on 21 February 2016 won seven frames in a row to beat Neil Robertson 9-5 and win 2016 BetVictor Welsh Open title held at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff, Wales. O'Sullivan met Robertson in the final. Despite trailing 3–5 after the afternoon session, O'Sullivan won all six frames played in the evening session to defeat Robertson 9–5 and equal John Higgins' record of four Welsh Open titles.
2. Italian woman Tennis player Francesca Schiavone on 21 February 2016 won Rio Open title defeating Shelby Rogers of America with scores of 2-6, 6-2, and 6-2 in the final held in Rio de Janeiro. It is her seventh career title. She won her first Grand Slam title at 2010 French Open.
3. The Indian women cricket team on 19 February 2016 won the three-match ODI series against Sri Lanka, 3-0. In the third and final match played in Ranchi, India defeated the Sri Lankan team by seven wickets. Medium-pacer Deepti Sharma grabbed six wickets haul before Veda Krishnamurthy scored a half-century after India posted a comfortable seven-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the third and final ODI.