Daily GK Update 16th August 2017, Important Current Affairs

1. World Health Organisation declares Somalia free of polio
i. The UN World Health Organisation (WHO) said that it had not recorded any case of polio disease in Somalia in the last three years, declaring the country polio free.
ii. The WHO said the country recorded the last case of polio in 2014 in the central part of the country but has since then remained free of the paralyzing disease.
iii. The UN health agency, however, warned Somalia remained vulnerable, calling for continued vaccination campaign.
iv. The head of the WHO Eastern Mediterranean, which covers Somalia, Mohamed Fiqi said that massive vaccination campaigns and commitment from government and international actors had ensured the polio virus did not recur in the Horn of Africa country.

2. 15th August 2017: 71st Independence Day
i. India celebrates its 70th anniversary of independence and Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation from the Red Fort.
ii. This is a special year- 75th anniversary of Quit India, 100th anniversary of Champaran Satyagraha, 125th anniversary of Ganesh Utsav.
iii. We have to take the country ahead with the determination of creating a ‘New India’.
iv. In 1942, the nation’s call was ‘Bharat Chhoro’ (Quit India). In 2017, the nation’s call is ‘Bharat Jodo’ (A United India)… that is our true strength. Irrespective of caste, community and religion we are one India.

3. Home Minister launches live twitter wall on ‘Bharat Ke Veer’
i. The Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh launched the live twitter wall for promoting Bharat Ke ii. Veer portal here on the eve of Independence Day 2017.
Bharat Ke Veer portal was launched by the Union Home Minister and actor Shri Akshay Kumar on April 9, 2017.
iii. This portal facilitates online donation directly to the families of CAPF Martyrs who have sacrificed their lives for the country in line of duty from January 1, 2016.
iv. This social media awareness campaign will display all tweets with hashtag Bharat Ke Veer (#BharatKeVeer), at Connaught Place, CGO complex and Khan Market in New Delhi where huge LED display screens have been installed.

4. PM launches website to honour gallantry award winners
i. Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a website to honour all the gallantry award winners since Independence.
ii. Announcing the launch of the website http://gallantryawards.gov.in Mr. Modi said “the portal will preserve and tell the stories of our bravest men and women, civilians as well as armed forces personnel.”
iii. PM Said “If you have any information/photo that is missing and can be added to the portal, please share it through the feedback link on the site”.

5. India’s first online course on Infusion Therapy launched
i. Infusion Nurses Society (INS), a global authority in infusion therapy ,launched India’s first online course on Infusion Therapy for nurses, under which it aims to train over 3,000 nurses in the vital medical procedure.
ii. Announcing the initiative, which will boost nurses even in rural parts of India, INS said that utilising the reach and ease of the digital platform, the course will enable members to access the various infusion therapy modules and presentations through its website.
iii. According to President of INS India Binu Sharma “The thinking behind such initiatives is to engage healthcare professionals to intensify the best safety and quality practices in infusion management across the country”.

6. “Fete de Puducherry” Begins
i. Artistes from 11 states and the union territory of Puducherry took part in ‘Fete de Puducherry,’ a three-day annual cultural festival organised by the government.
ii. Department of Art and Culture said that troupes from the states would present programmes in urban and rural areas during the three days.
iii. The festival is held in association with the South Zone Cultural Centre Thanjavur (Tamil Nadu) every year to bring to focus the multi-faceted cultural features of various states.
iv. The Puducherry government has been holding the festival since 1985 as part of celebrating Independence Day and also Liberation Day of Puducherry (August 16).

7. Maharashtra CM launches ‘Namo Yuva Rojgar Kendra’
i. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has launched Namo Yuva Rojgar Kendra, a farmers’ market on wheels, which aims at delivering farm-fresh organic produce at reasonable prices.
ii. A total of 125 farm-to-home delivery vans will tour the city to sell the product. The vegetables sold in the mobile vans will be priced 25% lower than the average market rate. The initiative aims to generate jobs for uneducated youth and women.
iii. Namo Yuva Rojgar Kendra is the brainchild of Prasad Lad, president of Mi Mumbai Abhiyan-Abhiman and Shri Swami Samarth Shetkari Utpadak. Mr. Lad said the initiative will be different from the now defunct Maharashtra Agro and Fruit Processing Corporation (MAFCO).

8. India Honours Its Bravehearts on 71st Independence Day
i. On the eve of 71st Independence Day, President Ram Nath Kovind honoured the bravehearts of India.
Kovind, who is also a Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, had approved 112 gallantry awards to Armed Forces Personnel and members of Paramilitary Forces which includes five Kirti Chakras, 17 Shaurya Chakras, 85 Sena Medals, three Nao Sena Medals (Gallantry) and two Vayu Sena Medals (Gallantry).
ii. Five bravehearts who have awarded Kirti Chakra include Major Preetam Singh Kunwar of the Garhwal Rifles; Havildar Giris Gurung (Posthumous) from the First Gorkha Rifles; Major David Manlun (Posthumous), of the Naga Regiment; Pramod Kumar (Posthumous), Commandant, 49 Batallion, Central Reserve Police Force and Chetan Kumar Cheeta, Commandant, CRPF.
iii. Kirti Chakra is the second highest gallantry award given to armed forces officials in peace time.

9. First plant-based vaccine against Zika virus
i. Scientists have developed the world’s first plant-based Zika vaccine that may be more effective, safer and cheaper than other vaccines against the mosquito-borne virus.
ii. The vaccine developed by researchers from Arizona State University (ASU) in the U.S. works against a part of a Zika viral protein, called DIII, that plays a key role for the virus to infect people.
iii. The worldwide Zika threat first emerged in 2015, infecting millions as it swept across the Americas. It struck great fear in pregnant women, as babies born with severe brain birth defects.

10. India beat SL Test Series 2017
i. India claimed their first ever 3-0 series win overseas, beating Sri Lanka in the third and the final Test at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Pallekele by an innings and 171 runs.
ii. Earlier, India won the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle by 304 runs and the second by an innings and 53 runs in Colombo.
iii. Hardik became the first Indian batsman to score 26 runs in an over in test match and surpassed the previous record of 24 runs which was scored by Sandeep Patil off Bob Willis in Manchester in 1982 and by Kapil Dev off Eddie Hemmings at Lord’s in 1990.

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