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Major News and Events of 20 February 2016

What Happened on 20 February 2016


LIGO Hanford Observatory Head says LIGO India to be Operational by 2023

LIGO Hanford Observatory head Fred Raab said that India’s own Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (which detected gravitational waves, giving legitimacy to Einstein’s century old theory) will be technically feasible for operation by 2023-end. Establishment of LIGO-India has been given in-principle approval by the Union Government. Three nodal institutes responsible for building and operationalising LIGO India are Raja Ramanna Centre for Advanced Technology (RRCAT), Indore, Inter University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), Pune, and Institute of Plasma Research (IPR) Gandhinagar.

Indian men Shuttlers storm into Semis of Badminton Asia Team Championships

Indian men shuttlers defeated Malaysian team in the Badminton Asia Team Championships, played in Hyderabad, 3-2 to storm into the semi finals (to play against Indonesia). Indian captain Kidambi Srikanth won the singles against Malaysia's Zulfadli Zulkiffli 21-14 21-15. Manu Attri-Sumeet Reddy pair defeated Juan Shen Low and Kiang Meng Tan 10-21, 22-20, 21-16 in the first doubles. The deciding singles was won by H S Prannoy against Teck Zhi Soo 21-12, 22-20. India has also qualified for Thomas Cup.

JNUSU President Kanhaiya to Challenge Arrest

After SC refused to hear JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar’s bail plea and asked adequate protective measures for being heard in the constitutional court (Delhi HC), legal team of Kanhaiya will not only apply for bail but also file writ petition under Constitution’s Article 226 (questioning filing of FIR and slapping of sedition law). NHRC’s investigating team called the physical assault on Kanhaiya in court’s premises “organised and pre-planned”.  Kanhaiya’s parents called their son innocent and asked for CBI probe to find out who chanted “anti-national slogans”. DCP South has issued a look-out notice for 3 JNU students who raised anti-India slogans on 9 February 2016.

West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra becomes GST Panel Head

Finance Minister of West Bengal Amit Mitra has been elected as chairman of ECSFM (Empowered Committee of State Finance Ministers) on Goods and Services Tax. Election of a new chairman was necessitated after resignation of Kerala Finance Minister K M Mani. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley himself conveyed the information over phone to the reportedly “unwell” Mitra. WB FM is credited in increasing revenue collection of state from Rs 21,000 crore to over Rs 41,500 crore through tax reforms last fiscal.

Arunachal Pradesh gets its New CM just after Presidential Rule is Lifted

President Pranab Mukherjee yesterday approved Union Cabinet recommendation for revoking President’s Rule in Arunachal Pradesh. Just after the Presidential approval, Arunachal Pradesh Governor Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa swore Kalikho Pul (rebel Congress MLA) as the new Chief Minister of the state, which shares border with China, at 9.30pm IST. BJP leader Tapir Gaon said that 31 MLAs (including 18 Congress MLAs, 11 BJP MLAs, and 2 independent MLAs) supported Kalikho Pul as new CM and also took oath of office and secrecy.

Jat Quota protesters block Major Highways, 150 Trains Cancelled

Agitation of Jat pro-reservation protesters went haywire after police shot two protesters in Haryana. Agitated protesters blocked major highways and 150 trains have been cancelled. Army flag marched in tensed areas. Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has assured the protesters of drafting a bill for giving quota to Jats and requested All India Jat Aarakshan Sangarsh Samiti to end stir. Suggestions have been sought on the matter by the state government from all political parties.  

Honda Cars India Ltd. to recall cars from today

From today, Honda Cars India Ltd. would be recalling its City, Jazz and Civic models that have been manufactured between January 2012 and June 2013 for replacement of faulty airbags. Carried out free of cost, this replacement would be held at Honda Cars India Ltd. dealerships across India in a phased way via direct communication with the car owners.

Essential drugs' prices to be slashed by 3% from April

In April, the prices of all essential medicines, including anti-infectives, cardiac and antibiotics, painkillers and anti-diabetes are expected to be revised downwards by nearly 3%. This is being done as an initiative to ensure substantial savings in the treatment costs associated with both major as well as minor ailments. Nearly 750-odd essential formulations would be witnessing a price drop ever since the National Pharmaceutical Policy was implemented in the year 2013.

Krishna Raj Kapoor back from hospital

Raj Kapoor’s wife Krishna Raj Kapoor who was being treated at Mumbai’s Breach Candy Hospital for some age-related health issues for around three weeks was discharged from the hospital yesterday and is doing fine. Her complete treatment had her two sons, Randhir and Rishi Kapoor, daughter Rima Jain and daughter-in-law Neetu Kapoor in attendance.




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