- 1. India and Germany signed work plan 2022 to strengthen cooperation.
- 2. Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways unveiled water taxi service in Mumbai.
- 3. Railway successfully connects T-49 tunnel.
- 4. Medaram Tribal Fair has started in Telangana.
- 5. New India Literacy Programme approved by Centre for FY 2022-2027.
- 6. Foodgrain production is estimated to cross above 316 million tonnes in 2021-22.
- 7. Air forces of Bangladesh-US to conduct exercise ‘Cope South 22’.
- 8. RBI extends deadline for NBFCs to comply with new NPA recognition norms.
- 9. Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council launched a new scheme ‘Kunsnyoms’ for differently-abled persons.
- 10. WHO launched ‘Quit Tobacco App’ to help people in quitting tobacco.
- 11. Government is planning to prepare digital maps of all villages.
- 12. NITI Aayog and PhonePe launches Fintech Open Hackathon.
- 13. Renowned Bengali singer Sandhya Mukhopadhyay passes away at the age of 90 in Kolkata.
- 14. Dabur India becomes India’s first ‘plastic waste neutral’ FMCG company.
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Topic: International News
1. India and Germany signed work plan 2022 to strengthen cooperation.
- India and Germany have signed the work plan 2022 during the 8th annual meeting of the Indo-German Working Group on Quality Infrastructure.
- The Working Group meeting is being held every year since 2013. It identifies areas of cooperation for strengthening quality infrastructure.
- The Work Plan 2022 will create a roadmap for collaboration towards well-functioning and resilient systems of quality infrastructures.
- The Work Plan 2022 agreed between both countries will include collaboration in mobility, energy, circular economy, smart farming/ agriculture, etc.
- It will help in reducing technical trade barriers, enhance product safety and strengthen consumer protection.
- Germany also shared the outcome of the Global Quality Infrastructure Index (GQII).
- India has been kept on 7th position on standardization aspect, 9th for Accreditation activities and 19th for the Metrology related activities.
Topic: State News/Maharashtra
2. Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways unveiled water taxi service in Mumbai.
- Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways Sarbananda Sonowal unveiled a water taxi service in Mumbai.
- Due to the water taxi services, the commuting time between Mumbai and Navi Mumbai is expected to be reduced by almost 45 minutes to an hour.
- The water taxi service is being started from Belapur with a total of 8 boats.
- It will take only 30 minutes by speed boat from Belapur to Bhaucha Dhakka in South Mumbai.
Topic: National News
3. Railway successfully connects T-49 tunnel.
- Railway has successfully connected the main tunnel of the Katra-Banihal section, T-49 between Sumber and Arpinchala stations.
- South entrance of the T-49 tunnel is located in Sumber village. It is 45 km from Ramban district headquarters in Jammu and Kashmir.
- North entrance of the tunnel is located near Arpinchala village of Khari tehsil, Ramban district, in Mahu-Mangat Valley.
- T-49 tunnel is the longest transportation tunnel of India. It is 12.758 km long. It is lengthier than 11.2-km long Pir Panjal Tunnel on the Banihal-Qazigund section.
- Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Rail Link is set to be 272-km long.
- Out of 272-km, 161-km has already been commissioned and operationalized. The remaining 111-km stretch is under progress at a rapid pace.
Topic: Art and Culture
4. Medaram Tribal Fair has started in Telangana.
- 4-day long biennial Medaram Tribal Fair has started in Mulugu, Telangana.
- It is believed to be Asia’s largest tribal fair. It is celebrated every two years at Medaram village.
- It commemorates the fight of Sammakka and Saralamma, against Kakatiya rulers’ oppression.
- The fair has been declared a state festival by Telangana state Government. It will culminate on the 19th Feb.
- The tribals perform prayers in the bamboo grove every two years. They bring back a casket of vermillion and bamboo sticks wrapped in red cloth. It symbolizes the return of Sammakka and Saralamma.
- During the celebration, the tribals offer jaggery equal to their own weight as a replacement for gold.
- The fair also attracts non-Adivasis. Union Ministry of Tribal Affairs has sanctioned over two crore rupees for Medaram Jatara.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
5. New India Literacy Programme approved by Centre for FY 2022-2027.
- A new scheme, New India Literacy Programme, has been approved by the government for the period of FY 2022 to 2027.
- The scheme will include all aspects of adult education and will be in line with the National Education Policy 2020 and the Budget Announcements for 2021-22.
- Adult Education and Lifelong Learning are recommended in the National Education Policy 2020.
- The objective of the scheme is to impart not only foundational literacy and numeracy but also to cover other components which are necessary for a citizen of 21st century.
- Non-literates aged 15 and above will be covered by the scheme in all states and UTs across the country.
- The scheme will be implemented through volunteerism through online mode.
- The entire cost of the ‘New India Literacy Programme’ is estimated to be over 1037 crore rupees.
- Performance Grading Index (PGI) for State/UT and district level will show the performance of States and UTs in implementing the scheme.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Agriculture and Allied Sectors
6. Foodgrain production is estimated to cross above 316 million tonnes in 2021-22.
- For 2021-22, the government has expected a record foodgrains production of more than 316 million tonnes in the country.
- The Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare has released the Second Advance Estimates of Major Crop Production for 2021-22.
- This is 5.32 million tonnes more than the foodgrain production in 2020-21.
- This financial year's production of foodgrains is 25.35 million tonnes more than the previous five years' average production.
- Comparison between Estimated Production for 2021-22 and the previous five years’ (2016-17 to 2020-21) average production of foodgrains:
Five years’ average production
(2016-17 to 2020-21)
127.93 million tonnes
116.44 million tonnes
111.32 million tonnes
103.88 million tonnes
26.96 million tonnes
23.82 million tonnes
49.86 million tonnes
46.58 million tonnes
37.15 million tonnes
35.95 million tonnes
414.04 million tonnes
373.46 million tonnes
34.06 million bales
32.95 million bales
7. Air forces of Bangladesh-US to conduct exercise ‘Cope South 22’.
- Bangladesh-US Air forces will conduct bilateral tactical airlift exercise ‘Cope South 22’.
- The six day long joint air exercises will be conducted between February 20-25 at BAF Kurmitola Cantonment, Dhaka, and Operating Location-Alpha, Sylhet, Bangladesh.
- Two US Air Force C-130J Super Hercules and two Bangladeshi C-130Js will take part in the exercise.
- The exercise aims to improve interoperability with Bangladesh’s air force and to support the armed forces of Bangladesh's long-term modernization efforts.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Indian Economy
8. RBI extends deadline for NBFCs to comply with new NPA recognition norms.
- The timeline for Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) to adhere to new NPA recognition norms has been extended by RBI by six months.
- Earlier, 31 March was the deadline for NBFCs to upgrade NPAs only after all arrears and principal dues are paid.
- NBFCs will now have time till 30 September to put in place the necessary systems to implement this provision.
- RBI has also issued a clarification that loans classified as NPA will be upgraded to the standard category only if all dues are paid.
- Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs):
- Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) are companies registered under the Companies Act, 1956 and regulated by RBI under RBI Act, 1934.
- NBFCs are not allowed to accept demand deposits. Their depositors do not get a deposit insurance facility of Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation. So, they are different from banks.
Topic: State News/ Ladakh
9. Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council launched a new scheme ‘Kunsnyoms’ for differently-abled persons.
- Recently, Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council has launched the ‘Kunsnyoms’ scheme for differently-abled persons.
- It aims to provide assistive devices/technologies to differently-abled persons at a 90% subsidized rate.
- The main objective of this scheme is to create an inclusive and accessible society in Ladakh.
- LAHDC Leh Chief Executive Councillor and Chairman Tashi Gyalson launched this new scheme.
- He and his executive councilors distributed 28 tri scooters, battery-run wheelchairs, and other devices.
- It became a Union Territory on 31 October 2019.
- It comprises two districts namely Leh and Kargil.
- Radha Krishna Mathur is the current Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh.
Topic: Biotechnology and Diseases
10. WHO launched ‘Quit Tobacco App’ to help people in quitting tobacco.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) launched the ‘Quit Tobacco App’ to quit tobacco in all forms.
- It is the first of its kind app launched by WHO and it helps users in setting the target, managing cravings and staying focused on quitting tobacco.
- This app has been launched during WHO’s year-long ‘Commit to quit’ campaign. ‘Commit to quit’ campaign is an initiative started by WHO for South-East Asia Region.
- Tobacco use can cause many non-communicable diseases (NCD) including cancers, cardiovascular diseases, lung diseases, and diabetes.
- WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control is one of the measures to reduce the demand and supply of tobacco.
- Every year Tobacco kills around 8 million people and around 1.6 million death occurs in the South-East Asia Region.
- Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems/ e-cigarettes, sheesha/hukkah have further increased the challenge of controlling tobacco.
Topic: National News
11. Government is planning to prepare digital maps of all villages.
- The government of India is planning to prepare digital maps of 6,00,000 villages and 3D maps of 100 cities under the SVAMITVA scheme.
- The updated geospatial policy guidelines will help private companies to prepare a variety of maps with the help of drones. The government will soon announce a complete geospatial policy.
- The Geographical Information based system mapping will be useful in forest management, disaster management, water distribution, and property taxation.
- So far, the government had conducted surveys of more than 1 lakh villages and created maps of 77, 527 villages.
- The government had launched the SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) scheme in 2020.
Topic: National News
12. NITI Aayog and PhonePe launches Fintech Open Hackathon.
- NITI Aayog in association with PhonePe has launched Fintech Open Hackathon.
- It will provide an opportunity for innovators, digital creators, and developers to present their ideas.
- Its main aim is to showcase path-breaking solutions for the Fintech Ecosystem.
- The winners of the Hackathon will be announced on 28 February.
- The first prize winner will get a cash prize of Rs 1 50,000 while the second place winner will get an award of Rs 1,00,000.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Personality in News
13. Renowned Bengali singer Sandhya Mukhopadhyay passes away at the age of 90 in Kolkata.
- The film industry has given her the title of ‘Geetashree’.
- She was a recipient of Banga Bibhusan, the highest civilian honour given by the Bengal government.
- She received the National Film Award for best female playback singer in 1970.
- She had sung the duet “Bol Papihe Bol” with Lata Mangeshkar for the film Tarana in 1951.
14. Dabur India becomes India’s first ‘plastic waste neutral’ FMCG company.
- It has collected, processed and recycled around 27000 metric tonnes of plastic waste during last financial year.
- Dabur’s Plastic Waste Management initiative was started in 2017-18 as part of the Plastic Waste Management (PWM) Rule.
- Dabur has also launched ‘Save the Environment’ campaign in Himachal Pradesh to create awareness about the management of plastic waste within households.
- Dabur has also established a robust audit mechanism to ensure complete transparency and compliance of the state and central regulations and guidelines on Plastic Waste Management.
- Dabur India is promoting cotton bags to replace plastic bags.