1. *PM Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of key projects of power and urban sector in Kerala yesterday evening through video conferencing.* : dedicated the Pugalur – Thrissur Power Transmission Project to the nation. The project that was completed at a cost of 5070 crore rupees will infact enable Thrissur district to be the major power hub of Kerala.
2. *After announcing his entry into BJP, 88-year-old ‘Metro Man’ E Sreedharan on Friday, said that he was open to chief ministership if BJP comes to power in Kerala,* he said that he was not interested in governorship as he won’t be able to contribute to state in such a ‘constitutional’ position with no powers at all. *Kerala goes to polls in April-May.*
3. *PM to discuss with CMs today plan to make India a manufacturing hub*. The meeting is also expected to deliberate measures to reduce compliance burden through business process reforms and cutting logistics costs to boost exports.
4. *West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Punjab’s Captain Amarinder Singh may skip the discussions. the Niti Aayog’s governing council meeting to be chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 20.*
5. *Bail plea of Lalu Prasad, former Bihar Chief Minister convicted in fodder scam was rejected in the single bench court of Justice Apresh Kumar Singh of Jharkhand High Court.* Lalu Prasad was convicted in the illegal withdrawal case from Dumka treasury and violation of Jail Manual case.
6. *Farmer leader Rakesh Tikait raised the spectre of the protesting farmers moving to poll-bound Bengal if the Centre did not accept their demands.*
7. The Election Commission of India (ECI) has decided to deploy 125 companies of central forces in West Bengal by February 25 for the ensuing assembly elections, Elections to the 294-member assembly are due in April-May.
8. *Punjab govt plans to unveil budget on March 8, session proposed from March 1-10* . The session will see the presentation of the Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India for the year 2018-19 and Appropriation Accounts for the year 2019-20
9. *Vehicle owners in Punjab can now carry digital copies of driving licenses and registration certificates. Documents on mParivahan and DigiLocker treated as valid*
10. *Punjab schools to open full time from February 22.* Education Minister Vijay Inder Singla announces new timings for all the schools across the state
11. *Bollywood actors Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn and other celebs extend warm wishes on Shivaji Jayanti* : Megastar Amitabh Bachchan took to his Twitter handle to pen down a note in Marathi and wrote, “Chatrapatī śivājī mahārāja jayantīcyā hārdika śubhēcchā (Heartfelt wishes on the birth anniversary of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj) … Feb 19th Birth Anniversary.”
12. *2 cops shot dead by terrorist in upmarket Srinagar area* : The two policemen, posted in nearby Saddar Police station on the high-security airport road, had gone to a close by shop to have their morning tea when they were attacked by the terrorist.
13. *The Indian Army will be raising three additional battalions* — with a total of about 3,000 troops troops, under Sikh, Kumaon, J&K regiments — to add to its manpower as part of its larger reorganisation plan and options to raise more are open.
14. *India successfully test-fired indigenously-developed anti-tank guided missile systems, ‘Helina’ and ‘Dhruvastra’,* paving their induction into the Army and the Indian Air Force respectively.
15. *The Union Cabinet approved further delegation of financial powers under capital procurement that empowers command heads of the Army* , the Air Force and the Navy to make expenses to the tune of Rs 100 crore at their own discretion.
16. *COVID-19 recovery rate improves to 97.30 pct; Over 1 crore doses of vaccine administered in a month*
17. Coronavirus Cases:
1. *India and China hold 10th round of Corps Commander level talks on Saturday at Moldo on the Chinese side of LAC in eastern Ladakh. The move follows the first phase of disengagement at Pangong Lake.*
2. Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying told media in Beijing that the two sides are in communication. She said India is an important neighbour and restoring a healthy stable relationship is the aspiration and in the interest of the people.
3. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), India have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to support the development, conduct and promotion of health research in India.
4. *Teen climate activist Greta Thunberg on Friday tweeted in support of Disha Ravi,* the 21-year-old arrested for allegedly being involved in sharing a “toolkit” on social media related to the farmers protest.
“Freedom of speech and the right to peaceful protest and assembly are non-negotiable human rights.
5. *The Chinese media on Friday released a video of the Galwan Valley clash in eastern Ladakh in June last year.* The video showing the confrontation between Indian and Chinese soldiers in June 2020.
Four Chinese soldiers were killed during a fierce hand-to-hand battle with the Indian Army in the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh in June last year, the People’s Liberation Army acknowledged for the first time.