Top Current Affairs 18 February 2021
Top Current Affairs 18 February 2021: This post contains the latest current affairs for 18 February 2021 that are important for all competitive exams like Bank, SSC, IBPS, SBI exams. You can also attempt our Current Affairs Quiz after reading our daily current affairs.
Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs launches Pilot Pey Jal Survekshan in 10 Cities
- The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has launched the Pilot Pey Jal Survekshan under Jal Jeevan Mission- Urban, JJM-U on February 16, 2021.
- The Pilot Pey Jal Survekshan has been launched in 10 cities, which are Agra, Badlapur, Bhubaneswar, Churu, Kochi, Madurai, Patiala, Rohtak, Surat and Tumkur.
- Objective: to ascertain equitable distribution of water, reuse of wastewater and mapping of water bodies with respect to quantity and quality of water through a challenge process.
- The motive of the Jal Jeevan Mission Urban is to provide universal coverage of water supply to all households through functional taps in all 4,378 statutory towns in accordance with Sustainable Development Goal – 6.
- Outlay: The Government has proposed a total outlay of Rs 2.87 lakh crore for JJM (U) in the fiscal 2021-22, which includes Rs. 10,000 crore for continuing financial support to AMRUT Mission.
Cabinet approves PLI scheme worth Rs 12,195 crore for telecom sector
- The Union Cabinet has approved a production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme worth Rs 12,195 crore for telecom equipment and networking product manufacturing.
- Through this decision, the government aims to offset the imports of telecom equipment worth more than Rs 50,000 crore and reinforce it with “Made in India” products both for domestic markets and exports.
- The support under the PLI scheme will be provided to companies manufacturers of specified telecom and networking products in India like Gigabit Passive Optical Networks (GPON), base routers, Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM), Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS/ IPMPLS) and 5G/4G radios.
- The government will soon come up with a PLI scheme to encourage production of laptops and tablet PCs.
Thaawarchand Gehlot Releases Third Edition of Indian Sign Language Dictionary with 10,000 Terms
- The Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot released the “third edition of the Indian Sign Language (ISL) Dictionary, in a virtual event on February 17, 2021.
- The 3rd edition of the ISL dictionary contains total 10,000 terms. These includes the 6000 terms of the first and second edition of the dictionary.
- The terms are of everyday use from academic terms, legal & administrative terms, medical terms, technical terms and agricultural terms.
- The Dictionary has been developed by the Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre (ISLRTC), an autonomous Institute under the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan), Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment.
- The 1st edition of the ISL Dictionary was launched on 23 March 2018 with 3000 terms. The 2nd edition was launched on 27th February 2019, with 6000 terms (including earlier 3000 terms).
PM Modi dedicates to the nation and lays foundation stone of key projects of oil and gas sector in Tamil Nadu
- On February 17, 2021, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi dedicated to the nation and laid the foundation of key projects of the oil and gas sector in Tamil Nadu via video conferencing.
- PM Modi laid the foundation stone of Cauvery Basin Refinery at Nagapattinam. It will have a capacity of 9 million metric tonnes per annum, and will be set up through a Joint Venture of IOCL and CPCL at an estimated project cost of Rs. 31,500 crore.
Among the projects dedicated were :
- 143 km Ramanathapuram – Thoothukudi natural gas pipeline of ONGC laid at the cost of about Rs. 700 crores. It is the part of the Ennore- Thiruvallur- Bengaluru- Puducherry- Nagapattinam- Madurai- Tuticorin Natural Gas Pipeline.
- Gasoline Desulphurisation Unit at Chennai Petroleum Corporation Limited (CPCL), Manali – constructed at the cost of about Rs. 500 crore.
Kiran Bedi Removed As Puducherry Lt Governor
- Kiran Bedi, the Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry, has been removed from the top position on February 16, 2021,
- Telangana Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan will discharge the duties of the Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry in addition to her own duties until regular arrangements are made.
Apps & Services
Centre Launches new Instant Messaging platform ‘Sandes’, on lines of WhatsApp
- The National Informatics Centre (NIC),under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, has launched an instant messaging platform called “Sandes”.
- Similar to WhatsApp, the new government instant messaging systems (GIMS) platform can be used for all kinds of communications by anyone using a mobile number or email id.
- The need to build a home-grown messaging platform was felt by the government to ensure secure communication between people as they worked from home, following the nationwide lockdown imposed to contain the spread of Covid-19.
- The Sandes app is also a part of the government strategy to encourage use of India-made software so as to build an ecosystem of indigenously developed products.
IIT Madras-incubated Pi Beam launches PiMo e-bike
- An IIT Madras-Incubated start-up Pi Beam Electric has recently launched a sustainable electric two-wheeler, dubbed as PiMo.
- The utility e-bike has been developed for personal and commercial use. It does not require a licence or registration.
- The cost of the electric two-wheeler has been fixed at Rs. 30, 000.
- It eliminates fuel costs as it runs on battery. The electric vehicle offers ‘Battery Swapping’ , meaning that the drained battery can be exchanged for a fully charged one at designated locations.
- The battery can charge faster than a smartphone, and comes with a range of 50 km.
Dharmendra Pradhan Participates in 1th IEA, IEF, OPEC Symposium on Energy Outlooks held Virtually
- The 11th IEA-IEF-OPEC Symposium on Energy Outlooks was held virtually on February 17, 2021 under the patronage of the Minister of Energy of Saudi Arabia HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud.
- From India, the Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, participated in the symposium.
- The trilateral symposium discussed on the long-term outlooks of key producer and consumer countries, apart from the comparative analysis of short, medium, and long-term energy outlooks that OPEC and the IEA published in 2020.
India Participates in Naval Exercise ‘Iran-Russia Maritime Security Belt 2021’
- India joined Iran and Russia in the naval exercise dubbed as “Iran-Russia Maritime Security Belt 2021”, which kicked-off in the northern part of the Indian Ocean on February 16, 2021.
- The Chinese navy will also join the exercise.
- The drill will cover an area of 17,000 square kilometres (6,500 square miles).
- It will include shooting at sea and air targets and liberating hijacked ships, as well as search and rescue and anti-piracy operations.
- The exercise ‘Iran-Russia Maritime Security Belt’ is so flexible that any country could join if they wish to do so.
- Purpose of drill: to enhance security of international maritime trade, confront maritime piracy and terrorism, and exchange information.
ICICI Lombard partners with Flipkart to offer ‘Hospicash’ insurance
- The e-commerce company Flipkart has partnered with ICICI Lombard to offer its customers the ‘Group SafeGuard’ insurance, a group health insurance policy.
- The ‘Group SafeGuard’ comes with a daily cash benefits starting from Rs 500, and ‘Hospicash’ benefit for Flipkart consumers.
- The product will allow consumers to avail a payout for each day of hospitalisation.
- The insurance is affordably priced, paperless, and flexible; covering both accidental hospitalisations or planned surgeries/treatment.