Current Affairs: 24 March 2017

World TB Day, 24 March 2017

  • World Tuberculosis Day is celebrated every year by the people all across the world at international level on 24th of March. 
  • It is celebrated to raise the common public awareness about the epidemic disease of tuberculosis as well as get their efforts in order to totally eradicate this disease.
  • As around 1.7 million of the people are dying of this disease every year. 
  • 24th of March has been established to commemorate the tuberculosis day by all at one place in order to get some solution to eradicate it from the world.
  • Tuberculosis was first discovered by the Dr. Robert Koch in the year 1882 and amazingly announced by him to the small group of scientists at “the University of Berlin’s Institute of Hygiene” about the cause of tuberculosis means the TB bacillus.
The theme of the World TB Day celebration of the year 2017 is “Unite to End TB”.

India’s longest highway tunnel to be inaugurated on April 2 

  • India's longest highway tunnel at Chenani Nashri, between Udhampur and Ramban in Jammu & Kashmir is all set to be inaugurated by prime minister Narendra Modi on April 2. 

Salient Features

  • The tunnel is the longest highway tunnel in India boasting of features like Integrated Traffic Control System (ITCS), Video Surveillance System and FM Rebroadcast System, among others and will reduce travel time by approximately two hours, apart from promising fuel savings to the tune of 27 lakh per day. 
  • The tunnel has multiple economic gains as connectivity in the remote area can help transform the life of this neglected region in the hills.

Yves Meyer, Wavelet Expert, Wins Abel Prize

  • The French mathematician Yves Meyer, a self-described “nomad” who has made deep contributions to the many subfields through which he has roamed over the past half-century, received the 2017 Abel Prize
  • Meyer’s “work on wavelets has been transformative in the area of signal processing
  • His Calderón-Zygmund work had suggested to him a way of developing the first “orthonormal basis” of wavelets: a system consisting of translated and dilated versions of a “mother wavelet”. 
  • Meyer, 77, has also contributed to the mathematics of quasicrystals, number theory and the study of the Navier-Stokes equations. 

Abel Prize

  • The Abel Prize is a Norwegian prize awarded annually by the Government of Norway to one or more outstanding mathematicians.
  • Named after Norwegian mathematician Niels Henrik Abel (1802–29) and modelled after the Nobel Prizes the award was established in 2001 by the Government of Norway.

First joint cycle expedition of India-Bangladesh Army flagged off from Agartala

  • In a bid to cement mutual bonhomie, a joint cycling expedition of Indian Army and Bangladesh Army, first of its type, was recently flagged off from the Agartala military station.
  • India and Bangladesh share a very close linkage as far as history, culture and geography are concern. Both the armies have been interacting with each other at various platforms at the senior level, senior level and training field.
  • This is one of the noble initiatives taken by the Indian and Bangladesh army and shall revive all the old memories of the war of liberation of 1971 as well as learning from the best practices at the junior and younger level between both the armies. This is the first of its kind and I am sure that it is the stepping stone for many such activities in future which both the armies will undertake
  • The expedition teams comprising of 19 soldiers each including officers, JCOs and OR will cover approx 532 km in 11 days.

India ranks 131 on Human Development Index

  • India came down by one slot and was ranked 131st among 188 countries on Human Development Index (HDI) 2016 released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
  • India fell under the "medium human development category" and its HDI, at 0.624, was behind Sri Lanka and the Maldives in South Asia.
  • Sri Lanka and the Maldives were ranked 73 and 105 respectively and figure in the "high human development" section.
  • The top three countries in HDI were Norway (0.949), Australia (0.939) and Switzerland (0.939).

What is Human Development Index?

  • Devised and launched in 1990, HDI is a statistic which ranks countries into four tiers of human development on the basis of indicators like life expectancy, education and per capita income.
  • A higher lifespan, higher level of education and higher GDP per capita results in a country scoring higher HDI.
  • The Human Development Index (HDI) is a composite statistic of life expectancy, education, and per capita income indicators, which are used to rank countries into four tiers of human development. 

Bengaluru gets India's first vertical garden

  • Emulating China and Italy's vertical forests, Bengaluru got its first vertical garden, which it hopes will help in curbing pollution and in beautifying the city.
  • SayTrees, an NGO, installed the first vertical garden in the city on one of the pillars of the Hosur Road flyover
  • The garden boasts of around 3500 saplings of more than 10 species
  • An automated drip irrigation system has been installed that will water these saplings every day
  • Every side has a creative design which makes the area look like a work of art

Ankur Mittal clinches double trap gold at ISSF World Cup

  • Ankur Mittal clinched the gold medal at the ISSF Shotgun World Cup in the double trap event, pipping Australian rival James Willet in the final in a world record equalling effort.
  • Mittal had settled for a silver at the recent International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup in New Delhi, where Willet had won the gold.
  • Mittal ended with 75 points out of possible 80 in the six-man final to win India’s first medal in the competition while Willet managed 73.
  • The 2017 ISSF World Cup is the annual edition of the ISSF World Cup in the Olympic shooting events, governed by the International Shooting Sport Federation.

South Indian Bank introduces Aadhar-based payment app

  • To promote cashless digital transactions, South Indian Bank has introduced Aadhar-based payment in its UPI mobile application- SIB M-Pay.
  • Unified Payment Interface enables all bank account holders to send and receive money from their Smartphone without entering the bank account information. 
  • Even non-customers of South Indian Bank can link any of their bank account in this mobile application. Currently, the fund transfer is possible only if the Virtual Address (UPI ID) of the beneficiary is known to the user. 
  • With the latest addition in SIB M-Pay, the fund transfers can be done by just entering the Aadhar number of the beneficiary. 
  • The amount will be credited directly to the beneficiary’s Aadhar linked bank account. SIB M-Pay app is currently available in Android Playstore.
  • Aadhar based payment in South Indian Bank's SIB M-Pay will be a major step in offering simple and efficient payment methods, as the country moves towards a 'Cashless Society' and Aadhar ID plays a key role in Digital India initiatives

Read Aadhar-based payment system

Ed Sheeran to Receive Songwriters Hall of Fame's 2017 Hal David Starlight Award

  • Ed Sheeran, he of pop superstardom and songwriter/performer of the juggernaut that is "Shape of You," has been named the recipient of the Songwriters Hall of Fame's 2017 Hal David Starlight Award, which will be presented at the 48th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner on June 15 in New York.

Others to be honoured

  • Pitbull: First-ever recipient of the Global Ambassador Award.
  • 2017 SHOF inductees: Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, Berry Gordy, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Robert Lamm & James Pankow p/k/a "Chicago," Max Martin and Shawn "Jay Z" Carter

Hal David Starlight Award

  • The Hal David Starlight Award was created in 2004 in honor of Songwriters Hall Chairman Emeritus Hal David as a way of honoring gifted young songwriters making a significant impact in the music industry with original compositions. 

India win 8 medals in Para Athletics Grand Prix

  • Indian Para Athletes bagged eight medals, including three gold, in the 9th Fazza International IPC Athletics Grand Prix in Dubai.
  • With 3 gold, 1 silver and 4 bronze medals till the second day of competitions, India are currently at the seventh spot out of 48 participating countries.
  • Sundar Singh Gurjar was the star among the Indians as he won a gold each in men's Javelin Throw F-46 and Discus Throw F-46 competitions.
  • The third Indian gold was bagged by Narender Ranbir in men's Javelin Throw F-44 with an effort of 47.75m

The other Indian medal winners

  • Anandan Gunasekaran: silver
  • Ramkaran Singh: bronze
  • Surjit Singh: bronze
  • Rohit: bronze
  • Pramod K Yadav: bronze
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