Current Affairs February 03-04 , 2019

In this post, GKToday presents Current Affairs of February 03-04 , 2019 in Short Notes form for preparation of IBPS, Banking, CLAT, SSC, Railway, UPSC, IAS/PCS, UPPSC, BPSC, MPPSC, RPSC, TNPSC, MPSC, KPSC and all other competitive examinations of India.

1. On 2nd February, the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival (KGAF-2019) has started in Mumbai to commemorate 20 years of its inception. The fest is the India’s largest multi-cultural street festival, which will celebrate two glorious decades of art and culture through cinema, theatre, dance, literature and sculpture through various spots on Mumbai’s map. The festival will also host exhibition at the historic Jehangir Art Gallery to celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and some rich history of Mumbai. Some of the festival highlights include screening of Khalil Mohammad’s documentary on Iranian cafes, performances by Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia, Shaan, Prakriti and Sukriti Kakar, panel discussion on 26/11 attacks and its survivors, a session on working of drones, heritage walks, dances and shopping at Rampart Row. The festival will end on 10th February.

2. Vani Kapoor has become the first Indian golfer to earn a card for the Australian Ladies PGA Tour (LPGA) after coming through its first-ever Qualifying Tournament at the Ballarat Golf Club. Vani shot rounds of 71, 78 and 69 to finish at two-over 218 and was tied-12th with three others. Vani has also qualified for Vic Open, co-sanctioned by the Australian LPGA and the US LPGA.

3. The Qatar national football team has won their first major football title after defeating four-time champion Japan 3-1 in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup final on 1st of February in United Arab Emirates (UAE). It was an improbable run to glory for the Gulf nation as it prepares to host the 2022 World Cup. In it, Almoez Ali has broken the record for the most goals ever scored by a single player at an Asian Cup tournament (9) and won most valuable player award of 2019 tournament. Earlier, the record was held by Ali Daei who scored eight for Iran in the 1996 edition. Almoez Ali is a Qatari professional footballer of Sudanese descent who plays for Qatar and Al-Duhail in the Qatar Stars League as a forward.

4. A team from INS Dronacharya has won the Regetta trophy (also called The Cock) in the Kochi Area Pulling Regatta 2019 of the Southern Naval Command (SNC) in the Ernakulam Channel on January 31. The Boat Pulling regatta is one of the most prestigious and traditional naval sporting activities conducted in the Navy. The boats used in the regatta are 27-feet-long ‘whalers’ — a type of seaboat — each having a crew of five ‘pullers’ (rowers) and one coxswain (helm). The boats are named as ‘whalers’ as they were used in ancient times for hunting whales at sea. Races during the regatta were held in four different categories - - junior sailors, senior sailors, officers and best whaler. The boats had to cover a distance of 1.6 km in the Ernakulam Channel, starting from the Venduruthy-Vikrant Bridge and finishing at the North Jetty of the navy. The regatta is considered a signature event of the Command, which requires the highest standards of physical and mental fitness and sustained hard work.

5. The Mizoram government has banned import of pigs and piglets from other countries in view of possible outbreak of the Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) that has cost the lives of thousands of swines in the state. The orders were issued as the dreaded PRRS outbreak always occurred from March to July, during a dry spell after pre-monsoon downpours. According to the records of the Veterinary department, the PRRS has cost the lives of over 10,000 swines in Mizoram since 2013 and it is believed that it happened due to import of pigs and piglets from Myanmar where the disease was known to be prevalent. The PRRS is also known as blue-ear pig disease, which affectes domestic pigs. The symptoms include reproductive failure, pneumonia and increased susceptibility to secondary bacterial infection.

6. The World Wetland Day (WWD) is observed every year on 2nd of to raise awareness about the value of wetlands for humanity and the planet. The day marks adoption of the Convention on Wetlands (also called as Ramsar Convention) on 2nd February 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar on shores of the Caspian Sea. The 2019 theme “Wetlands and Climate Change” highlights the importance of healthy and intact wetlands to one of the most pressing challenges of climate change.

7. The International Energy Agency (IEA) has prepared the report titled ‘The Future of Rail’ in association with the International Union of Railways (UIC). This first-ever global report has a specific focus on India, where rail passenger traffic increased by nearly 200% since 2000. The report stated that Indian railways will account for nearly 40% of total global rail activity by 2050. The investments in Indian urban rail infrastructure are estimated to reach nearly $190bn by 2050. As a result, India can save up to $64bn on fuel expenses by that time. The IAEA report analyses the current and future importance of rail around the world through the perspective of its energy and environmental implications. As per the report, the rail sector carries 8% of the world’s passengers and 7% of global freight transport but it utilises only 2% of total transport energy demand. The regions with the highest share of electric train activity are Europe, Japan and Russia, while North and South America still rely heavily on diesel. Most conventional rail networks are located in North America, Europe, China, Russia, India, and Japan.

8. The 12th edition of the India’s premier air show - Aero India 2019 will be held at Air Force Station at Yelahanka in Bengaluru from February 20 to 24. The Ministry of Defence has lined up programmes for Start-Ups Day, Women’s Day, Daily Students’ Day, Drone Olympics and photography contests as sideshows to make it an interactive affair. More than 350 exhibitors will be accommodated in five hangers at the Air Force Station. This year, the aero show is themed ‘The Runway to a Billion Opportunities’, to communicate India’s value proposition in addressing the immense opportunities in the aerospace and aviation sectors in the country today. The logo for Aero India 2019 is inspired by the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA).

9. As per latest survey conducted by Transparency International (TI), Assam has occupied the top slot in the ranking of best practices followed by states in Budget formulation and is followed by Andhra Pradesh and Odisha. The states which figured lower in the ranking were Meghalaya, Manipur and Punjab. The survey was carried out on the basis of four parameters - public disclosure, budgetary process, post budget fiscal management and efforts to make budget more transparent and citizen friendly. Transparency International has stated in its survey report that Assam is the only state out of the 29 states and two union territories which has published a Citizens Budget in the public domain. It also stated that the Assam Government is the only government that has conducted budget awareness campaigns across 17 districts.

10. As per the National Sample Survey Office’s (NSSO’s) periodic labor force survey (PLFS), India’s unemployment rate hit a 45 year high of 6.1% in 2017-18. The latest data on unemployment in India is the first comprehensive survey on employment conducted by a government agency after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation move in November 2016. The report, which is yet to come in public domain, stated that this level of unemployment was last seen in 1972-73. According to the survey, the rate of unemployment among rural males in the age group of 15-29 years was at 17.4%, more than three times the 2011-12 rate of 5%. A similar trend was seen in females in the same age group, where the rate jumped from 4.8% in 2011-12 to 13.6% in 2017-18. The rate of joblessness for urban youths was a whopping 18.7% for males and 27.2% for females.


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