Daily Update On Current Affairs – August 18, 2017

Current Affairs

Here’s your daily summary of Current Affairs.

Defence Ministry clears proposal to procure 6 Apache attack helicopters for Army 

Defence Ministry has cleared a proposal to procure 6 Apache attack helicopters for Army. Sources in the Ministry said the decision was taken in Defence Acquisition Council meeting chaired by Defence Minister Arun Jaitley in New Delhi on 17th August. The acquisition of the helicopters, equipment, and training will cost around Rs 4168cr. The Council has also approved a proposal to procure two gas turbine engines for Naval ships at a cost of Rs 490 cr.
Tamil Nadu: Inquiry commission to probe death of Jayalalithaa evokes mixed reactions

In Tamil Nadu, the decision to form an inquiry commission to probe the death of late leader J Jayalalithaa has evoked mixed reactions. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palani Swamy made the announcement on the 17th August saying the panel would be led by a retired High Court judge. He also said the Chennai Poes Garden residence of the late leader would be converted into a memorial where the public would be given access. The AIADMK PTA party led by ex-chief minister O. Panneerselvam has welcomed the decisions. One of its leaders Ma Foi Pandiarajan said it addresses the party’s key demands.
Karnataka launches Indira Canteens

Much on the lines of the Amma canteens in Tamil Nadu, the State Govt in Karnataka has launched the Indira Canteens in Bengaluru, the State Capital. The canteens have been launched to provide subsidized food to the poor people living in the city. The canteens were inaugurated on the 16th August 2017.
US, Japan to advance security, defence cooperation with India, South Korea and Australia

The US and Japan have agreed to advance their multilateral security and defence with cooperation countries like India, South Korea, and Australia in view of the North Korea’s dangerous provocative behaviour. The threat posed by North Korea was discussed by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and his Japanese counterpart Taro Kono, Defence Secretary, James Mattis and his Japanese counterpart, Itsunori Onodera. Tillerson told reporters at a joint news conference with Kono, Mattis and Onodera that in cooperation with other nations, they will continue to employ diplomatic and economic pressure to convince North Korea to end its illegal nuclear and ballistic missile program. The four officials have strongly encouraged China to take decisive measures to urge North Korea to change its course of action.
Terrorist attack in Spain: ISIS Claims Responsibility     
In Spain, at least 13 people were killed and 100 injured in a terror attack after a van rammed into a crowd of pedestrians on Barcelona’s Las Ramblas tourist area on the 17th August. The president of Spain’s Catalonia region Carles Puigdemont, confirming it a terror attack, said that police have arrested two people in this connection. Police said the driver was still on the run. The Police has cordoned off the area around the incident and requested the closure of local metro and train stations. Meanwhile, ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack. According to US monitor SITE Intelligence Group, the extremist group’s propaganda outlet AMAQ claimed that the executors of the attack were soldiers of the Islamic State.
First shipment of American crude oil worth USD 100M to reach India next month

The first shipment of American crude oil worth USD 100 million will reach India next month, with US President Donald Trump promising to be a reliable, long term supplier of energy to India’s developmental needs. The shipment of crude oil to India comes nearly two years after the then US President Barack Obama lifted the 40-year-old ban on its export. During their maiden meeting on June 26, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump agreed to deepen the engagement in the energy sector. Soon, Indian companies started purchasing crude from the US. Two Indian oil giants, Indian Oil Corporation and Bharat Petroleum, placed orders for over four million barrels. With this India, the world’s third largest oil importer joins Asian countries like South Korea, Japan, and China to buy American crude after production cuts by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries drove up prices of Middle East heavy-sour crude, or grades with a high sulfur content.
CII and GeM sign MOU to establish GeMSamvad     

On the 14th August 2017, the Confederation of Indian Industries and the Government e Market Place to establish the GeMSamvad. GeMSamvad is intended to be a participative and collaborative attempt with the industry to promote Indian industry and entrepreneurship. As a part of this, both the parties will together raise awareness.  They will also form a forum to seek technical assistance.
IIT, Guwahati develops silk patch to repair damaged heart tissue

Scientists at the IIT Guwahati have developed a 3D Cardiac tissue patch using silk protein membranes seeded with heart muscle cells. The patch can be used for regenerating damaged heart tissues and sealing holes in the heart. The 3D patch can be implanted at the site of the damage to enable the heart to regain normal functioning. 
Researchers discover new tectonic plate    
Researchers at the US Rice University have discovered a new tectonic plate in the Eastern Pacific Ocean, off the Equador coast. Named after a Columbian Island, the Malpelo plate is the 57th plate to be discovered and the first in nearly a decade.

Veteran Photographer S Paul passes away  

Veteran photographer S Paul died in New Delhi on 16th August at the age of 88. He died at a private hospital after undergoing a surgery a few days ago. Paul was a self-taught photographer who discovered his passion for the art as a teenager. He joined The Indian Express in the 1960s and retired from the newspaper in 1989. Paul received recognition and fame as a professional photographer when his pictures were selected for publication in three renowned British publications Amateur Photographer, Miniature Camera and Miniature Camera World. 
Lakshya wins Bulgaria Open International Series Badminton   
Young Indian shuttler Lakshya Sen clinched the Bulgaria Open International Series title after notching up a hard fight win over Croatia’s Zvonimir Durkinjak in the men’s singles final, in Sofia, Bulgaria on the 17th August 2017. The 16-year-old shuttler defeated second seed Zvonimir 18-21, 21-12, 21-17 in a 57-minute match. He had beaten Sri Lanka’s Dinuka Karunaratna 21-19 21-14 in the semifinals.

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