16 February 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

16 February 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

1. Ashwani Lohani appointed as Air India CMD

  • Former Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani (1980-batch IRSME) has been appointed as the Chairman and managing director (CMD) of Air India.
  • Lohani will take over from Pradeep Singh Kharola.
  • Earlier, Pradeep Singh Kharola (IAS officer -1985 batch- Karnataka cadre) has been appointed as the Secretary of the Ministry of Civil Aviation.
  • In December 2018, Mr Lohani retired as the Railway Board chairman.
  • Air India is the flag carrier airline of India, owned by Air India Limited and operates a fleet of Airbus & Boeing aircraft serving 90 domestic and international destinations.
  • Air India's mascot is the Maharajah (Emperor) and the logo consists of a flying swan with the wheel of Konark inside it.

2. BP Sharma re-employed as Pawan Hans CMD

  • The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved re-employment of B P Sharma as the chairman and managing director (CMD) of Pawan Hans Limited for a period of five months
  • Sharma took over as the CMD of Pawan Hans in March 2015.
  • Pawan Hans has a fleet of more than 50 helicopters.
  • Pawan Hans Limited is a helicopter service company (Mini Ratna-I category PSU) based in New Delhi, India.
  • The objective of PHL is to provide helicopter support services to the oil sector for its off-shore exploration operations, services in remote areas and charter services for promotion of tourism.

3. President Kovind directs that Finance and Corporate Affairs portfolios be assigned to Jaitley

  • President Ram Nath Kovind has directed that the Finance and Corporate Affairs portfolios be assigned to Union Minister Arun Jaitley.
  • Mr Jaitley, who left for New York last month, returned home last week after undergoing medical treatment.
  • On 23rd of January, the charge of the Finance Ministry and Corporate Affairs was given to Union Minister Piyush Goyal on a temporary basis.

National Affairs

4. PM Narendra Modi flags-off Vande Bharat Express

  • PM Narendra Modi flags off India's first semi-high-speed train ‘Vande Bharat Express’ (codenamed Train 18) without any flower decorations.
  • A two-minute silence observed before the launch in memory of at least 37 CRPF soldiers who lost their lives in one of the deadliest attacks in J&K.
  • The Vande Bharat Express will run between Delhi and Varanasi at a maximum speed of 130 km/hr and is expected to cover a distance of 750 kilometres in eight hours.
  • The fares of Vande Bharat Express have been kept higher than the Shatabdi Express.
  • Vande Bharat Express runs between the aforesaid destination for five days in a week except for Monday and Thursday.
  • The Vande Bharat Express (Train 18) has been manufactured in ICF, Chennai at a reported cost of Rs 97 crore.
  • The train is equipped with all modern facilities like infotainment systems, Wi-Fi, modern toilets and better seating arrangements.

5. Challachitram National film festival to begin from 1st March

  • Challachitram National Film Festival will be held at Guwahati in March 2019, with a special award for entries from the north-eastern region.
  • The theme of this three-day film festival is 'Our Heritage, Our Pride'.
  • Chalachitram is a Guwahati-based organisation working for showcasing the heritage and culture of the northeast to a national and international audience through films.
  • The first prize winner in the competitive section would get Rs one lakh, the special prize for participants from the region would be Rs 50,000.

International Affairs

6. India withdraws most favoured nation status to Pakistan

  • India has announced withdrawal of Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status for Pakistan, following the Pulwama terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • The decision was taken during the Cabinet Committee on Security meeting (CCS) in New Delhi.
  • India had granted the status to Pakistan in 1996, a year after WTO’s formation.
  • In the World Trade Organization (WTO), this status means non-discrimination treating virtually everyone equally.

Books & Authors

7. New book ‘What Marx Left Unsaid’ released by Manish Tewari

  • Indian Politician Manish Tewari has released ‘What Marx Left Unsaid’ ‘Production of Skills by Means of Skills’ at Indian International Centre, New Delhi.
  • The book has been authored jointly authors by 3 generations of the same family Dr. Malay Chaudhari, Dr. Arindam Chaudhari and Che Kabir Chaudhari.
  • The book speaks about why human beings must earn as per their skills, which will in turn determine their ability to contribute to society.
  • The book is published by Times Group.


8. England’s Legendary Goalkeeper Gardon Banks passed away

  • Famous goalkeeper Gordon Banks (81-years) passed away in England.
  • He was widely considered as one of the greatest Goalkeeper of his generation.
  • Gordon Banks was named as FIFA (The Federation Internationale de Football) Goalkeeper of the year six times and earned 73 caps for England between 1963 to 1972.
  • Banks was suffering from kidney cancer for the second time since 2016.

9. Eminent writer, ex-Goa deputy speaker Vishnu Wagh pass away

  • Veteran writer and former deputy speaker of Goa Legislative Assembly Vishnu Wagh passed away in South Africa.
  • Wagh was a member of the Goa Legislative Assembly from St Andre constituency between 2012 and 2017.
  • He was the chairman of the state-run Goa Kala Academy.
  • Wagh has written over 20 plays in Marathi, three sangeet nataks, 18 Konkani play and 16 one-act plays.
  • He has directed over 50 plays in Konkani and Marathi.


10. Sportstar Aces Lifetime Achievement Award for Prakash Padukone

  • Badminton legend Prakash Padukone has been honoured for the Lifetime Achievement at the Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai.
  • In the Sportsman of the Year (Cricket) category, India skipper Virat Kohli and pacer Jasprit Bumrah were declared as joint winners.
  • Indian women's cricket team opener Smriti Mandhana bagged the Sportswoman of the Year (Cricket) award.
    • The awards jury consisted of Sunil Gavaskar, M M Somaiya, Anju Bobby George, Anjali Bhagwat and journalist N Ram.

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