Here’s your daily summary of Current Affairs.
On the 21st August 2017, Dr. Jagdish Mukhi, Lt Governor of Andaman & Nicobar, commissioned the IN LCU 452 into the Indian Navy at Port Blair. This is the second Landing Craft Utility which the Indian Navy has in its possession. The ship has been designed and produced by the Garden Reach Workshop in Kolkata. The ship will be used to carry battle tanks and armoured vehicles from ship to shore. The ship is fitted with state of the art communication systems
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has hailed US President Donald Trump’s decision to commit US troops to the country to fight against the resurgent Taliban. Mr. Ghani thanked the US for supporting the joint struggle against the threat of terrorism. Mr. Trump has committed the US army to the open-ended conflict, despite previously advocating its withdrawal. He offered few details on the plan, but he did single out Pakistan for offering safe havens to extremists. Meanwhile, the Taliban has warned that Afghanistan would become another graveyard for the US if it did not withdraw its troops.
In Syria, at least 42 civilians were killed in a barrage of US-led airstrikes on Islamic State (IS) group territory in the northern city of Raqa. News agency AFP quoting Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 19 children and 12 women were among those killed in the raids. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights is a UK-based group monitoring the Syrian conflict via a network of contacts on the ground. The toll marked the second consecutive day of ferocious bombardment on Raqa, more than half of which has been captured by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces battling IS. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has meanwhile also confirmed that at least 70 fighters from ISIS were killed in a Russian air attack on a convoy in the countryside west of Deir Az Zor on 18th August 2017. However, Russian state news agency TASS claimed that Russian fighter jets killed more than 200 Islamic State fighters in Deir Az Zor without specifying the date of the attack.
The wreckage of the World War II American ship Indianapolis was found after 72 years by a team of civilian researchers. The ship was found at a depth of 18000 feet or about 5.5km in the Pacific Ocean. The Indianapolis was destroyed on 30th July 1945 while it was returning after supplying spares and ammunition, which were used in the bombing of Hiroshima. Out of the 1196 men on board, only 316 survived and were rescued. Till date, this remains the USA’s largest ever loss at sea.
Normal banking operations have been hit as public sector bank employees went on a one-day nationwide strike on the 22nd August 2017 to protest against the government’s proposed consolidation move. Services like deposits and withdrawal at bank branches, cheque clearance, NEFT and RTGS transactions have been affected. However, operations at private sector banks were normal. The strike had been called by all unions under the aegis of the United Forum of Bank Unions. Besides protest against consolidation move of the government, other demands include no write-off policy for non-performing assets (NPAs) of corporate loans, declaring the wilful default of loans as criminal offence and implementation of recommendations of Parliamentary Committee on the recovery of NPAs.
Foreign direct investment, FDI, into the country grew by 37 percent to 10.4 billion US Dollar during the first quarter of the current fiscal. According to the figures of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, DIPP, India had received around eight billion FDI US Dollar during the same period, last year. The main sectors which attracted the highest foreign inflow include services, telecom, trading, computer hardware and software and automobile. A bulk of the FDI came in from Singapore, Mauritius, Netherlands, and Japan. The government has announced several steps to attract foreign inflows. The measures include liberalisation of FDI policy and improvement in business climate.
Of the 56 regional rural banks (RRBs) in the country, two notched up the net profit of over ₹ 150 crores each during 2016-17. These are the Karnataka Vikas Grameena Bank and Andhra Pragathi Grameena Bank. Both are sponsored by the Syndicate Bank. These are among the 49 RRBs that recorded a profit in 2016-17. Seven RRBs suffered losses during the period. According to the Reserve Bank of India’s ‘Report on Trend and Progress of Banking in India’, 45 of the 56 RRBs earned profits without carrying any accumulated losses during 2015-16.
Scientists in the UK have developed the world’s smallest surgical robot with low-cost technology which is used in mobile phone and space industries. The robot named Versia, mimics the human arm and does a variety of functions which hitherto were thought undoable by robots. It is very useful in handling complex surgeries which facilitate doctors in the hospitals. It can be used for performing a variety of surgical operations.
Para Olympian Devendra Jhajharia and Hockey player Sardar Singh have been selected for this year’s Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award. This award is given to the sports person for a spectacular and most outstanding performance in the field over a period of four years. Cricketers Harmanpreet Kaur and Cheteshwar Pujara, shooter PN Prakash, pugilist L. Devendro Singh and Tennis player Saketh Myneni are among the 17 sportspersons who will be given Arjuna Awards this year.