19 February 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

19 February 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

19 February 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

1. Hina Jaiswal becomes India's first woman flight engineer

  • Flight Lieutenant Hina Jaiswal has become the first Indian women flight Engineer of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
  • She completed the 6 months flight engineer course from the 112 Helicopter Unit attached to the Air Force station in Yelahanka in Bengaluru.
  • The Flight Engineer branch was opened to women officers in 2018 (earlier restricted to men).
  • Now, Hina will be posted to a helicopter squadron where she will monitor and operate IAF’s complex aircraft in various conditions.
Note:
  • Hina was born in Chandigarh, completed her Bachelor of Engineering degree from Punjab University, commissioned in the engineering batch of the IAF on 5th January 2015.
  • Earlier, Jaiswal has served as the chief of firing team and the battery commander in a frontline surface to Air Missile Squadron.

Honours & Awards

2. Abdul Aziz Muhamat wins International Human Rights Prize

  • As per the UN refugee agency UNHCR, Abdul Aziz Muhamat (Sudanese refugee) has won the Martin Ennals Award 2019 in Geneva (Switzerland) for exposing “the very cruel asylum seeker policy of the Australian Government”.
  • Mr. Muhamat spent five years in the Australian detention centre on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea.
  • It is sometimes referred to as the ‘Nobel Prize for human rights’.
Note:
  • The annual Martin Ennals Awards are named after a Nobel Peace Prize-winning British human rights activist.

3. President Kovind presents Tagore Award for Cultural Harmony

  • The President of India Ram Nath Kovind presented the Tagore Award for the years 2014, 2015 & 2016 for Cultural Harmony at Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra, New Delhi.
  • This annual award is given to individuals, associations, institutions or organizations for their outstanding contribution towards promoting values of Cultural Harmony.
  • The exponent of Manipuri dance Rajkumar Singhajit Singh was given the award for the year 2014.
  • Chhayanaut (cultural organization of Bangladesh) was given the award for 2015 for its role in the promotion of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore's works and Bangla arts.
  • Renowned sculptor and scholar Ram Vanji Sutar has been given the award for 2016.
Note:
  • Tagore Award for Cultural Harmony was instituted by the Government from 2012 recognizing the contributions made by Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore to humanity.
  • It is awarded annually and carries an amount of One Crore rupees, a citation in a Scroll, a Plaque as well as an exquisite traditional handicraft or handloom item.

Obituaries

4. Best-selling British Author ‘Andrea Levy’ passed away

  • Bestselling British Author Andrea Levy (62-years) passed away due to cancer.
  • She was known for penning books ‘The Long Song’ and ‘Small Island’(story of Jamaican migrants in Britain).
  • ‘Small Island’ won the Whitbread prize, the Orange Prize for Fiction and the Commonwealth Writers’ prize.
  • Levy's last novel, "The Long Song," was published in 2010 and was shortlisted for the Man Booker prize.

Important Dates

5. Shivaji Jayanti being celebrated in Maharashtra

  • Today, the birth anniversary of Maratha Warrior King ‘Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’ is being celebrated in all over Maharashtra.
  • Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu paid tributes to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj on his birth anniversary.
Note:
  • Shivaji Bhonsle was an Indian warrior king and a member of the Bhonsle Maratha clan.
  • Shivaji carved out an enclave from the declining Adilshahi sultanate of Bijapur that formed the genesis of the Maratha Empire.
  • In 1674, he was formally crowned as the Chhatrapati (Monarch) of his realm at Raigad.

6. Guru Ravidas Jayanti being celebrated across the country today

  • Today, the birth anniversary of Sant Ravidas (the founder of Bhakti movement) is being celebrated across the country.
  • As per the Hindu calendar, it is celebrated on full moon day of the Magh month (Magh Purnima).
  • On the day, people who follow the Ravidas religion, take out a Nagar Kirtan procession with the saint’s portrait while chanting special prayers.
  • Today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi reached Sant Ravidas Temple at Sier Govardhan where he took part in foundation stone laying of Ravidas Birth place development projects.
Note:
  • Ravidas was born in the village of Seer Goverdhanpur, near Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.
  • Guru Ravidas was a North Indian mystic poet-Sant of the bhakti movement during the 15th to 16th century CE.

International Affairs

7. Iran launches new locally-made submarine capable of firing cruise missiles

  • Iran President Hassan Rouhani has launched a new locally-made submarine ‘capable of firing cruise missiles.
  • The submarine, named the Fateh, Persian for 'conqueror', is Iran's first in the semi-heavy category.

National Affairs

8. Rajnath Singh launches Single emergency helpline '112' for 16 states, UTs

  • The Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has launched single emergency helpline number '112' in 16 States and UT (Union Territories).
  • The 16 states and UTs are Andhra Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Puducherry, Lakshadweep, Andaman, Dadar Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Jammu and Kashmir.
  • People can also log onto the ERSS' website for the state and lodge emergency Email or send SOS alert to state ERC.
  • The ERSS is an integration of police (100), fire (101), health (108) and women (1090) helpline numbers to provide emergency services through the single number '112'.
Note:
  • To access the emergency services, a person can dial 112 on a phone or press the power button of a smartphone three times quickly to send a panic call to the Emergency Response Centre (ERC).
  • They can use '112' India mobile app, which is available free on Google Play store and Apple store.
  • In case of a normal phone, a long press of the '5' or '9' key will activate the panic call function.

9. PM flags off 1st ever diesel to electric converted locomotive twin engine at Varanasi

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off the world’s first electric engine converted from diesel locomotive at the Diesel Locomotive Works (DLW) in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.
  • Under Make in India initiative, The 10,000 HP freight locomotive has been converted from two units of old diesel locomotives of 2,600HP each with indigenous technology
  • The converted locos will result in less greenhouse gas emissions and better efficient locomotives for the Indian Railways.
  • The feat was achieved with the help of engineers from Research Designs and Standards Organisation (RDSO), Chittaranjan Locomotive Works (CLW), and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd. (BHEL).

10. Andhra Pradesh farmers will get benefit under ‘Annadata Sukhibhava scheme’

  • Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu has announced Annadata Sukhibhava scheme 2019.
  • Under Annadata Sukhibhava scheme 2019, an amount of Rs 9,000 will be given to the farmers having land less than 5 acres.
  • This will be in addition to the Rs 6,000 announced by the Central government.
  • Farmers having land more than 5 acres, will be given Rs 10,000.

Banking and Finance

11. RBI to give Rs 28,000 cr to Centre as interim dividend

  • 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).
  • The decision has been based on a limited audit review and after applying the extent economic capital framework.
  • This is the second straight year that the RBI has announced an advance payment to the government.
  • It will help the union government partly bridge a budget gap and could be key to funding an income support programme for farmers.
Note:
  • In the interim Budget 2019-20, the government has projected a fiscal deficit target of 3.4% for the financial year 2019-20.
  • Dividend payments from RBI will help the government in bridging some of the gaps to boost the economy.
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