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National Stories – Flashback 2017

India Successfully Test Fires Agni-IV Ballistic Missile

On January 2, India successfully test-fired its nuclear-capable strategic ballistic missile Agni-IV with a strike range of 4,000km as part of a user trial from a test range off Odisha coast.

Supported by a mobile launcher, the surface-to-surface missile was flight tested from launch complex-4 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Dr Abdul Kalam Island, formerly known as Wheeler Island, at about 11.55 hours.

DRDO says this was the 6th trial of the indigenously developed Agni-IV missile which met the mission objectives

Assembly Elections 2017; 5 States, 690 Seats

BJP’s victory trend started in February after the party won Goa and Uttarakhand. A month after that in March, the BJP swept through Uttar Pradesh and Manipur. The party however lost against the Congress in Punjab in 2017 Assembly polls.

INS Viraat Decommissioned after 30 Years of Service to Indian Navy

Aircraft carrier INS Viraat was decommissioned on March 6, after 30 years with the Indian Navy, at an impressive ceremony onboard and in the presence of Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba and top armed forces officials.

INS Viraat was the second centaur-class aircraft carrier, after INS Vikrant. The aircraft carrier, in its earlier avatar, had won Falklands War against Argentina in 1982 for the Royal British Navy. It weighs about 27,800 tonnes and served in the British Navy as HMS Hermes from November 1959 to April 1984 and after refurbishment, was commissioned into the Indian Navy. Indian Navy purchased it at the cost of $65 million and was recommissioned on May 12, 1987.

Darjeeling Unrest

Through much of 2017, the picturesque Darjeeling Hills – once a dreamy tourist gateway – simmered with violence over the revived demand for a separate Gorkhaland state.

The agitation that started against the alleged imposition of Bengali language on the locals, snowballed into an intense movement for statehood, triggering widespread arson and vandalism, massive clashes, multiple casualties, political blame games, and the longest-ever shutdown of 104 days that brought the entire northern West Bengal hills to a standstill.

On August 19, 2017 two separate bomb blasts within 24 hours in Darjeeling and Kalimpong rocked the hills. One civic volunteer was killed while two security personnel were injured in the Kalimpong explosion.

India has launched its Biggest Tax Reform

Goods and Services Tax (India) launched in India on July 1, 2017. The India’s biggest tax reform in 70 years of Independence, was launched at midnight of June 30, 2017.

The GST weaved 29 states into a single market with one tax rate but while traders and small business complained of increased compliance burden, voices of dissent rose on high tax rate on some common use goods. GST tax slabs of 5, 12, 18 and 28 per cent were decided going by the principle of fitting each item into a category most close to cumulative pre-GST taxes.

More than 250 died in Gujarat Floods

Following heavy rain in July 2017, the Indian state of Gujarat was affected by severe flooding. The floods were reported to have caused more than 250 deaths between June 1 and July 31, 2017. 16 people had died in neighbouring Rajasthan state by July 31, 2017.

Ram Rahim – From Cave to Jail

Controversial Godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was convicted of rape by a special CBI court on August 25, 2017. This was followed by widespread violence will killed over 38, injured 300. He has been sentenced to 20 years in jail for rape.

Nirmala Sitharaman named India’s 2nd woman defence minister after Indira Gandhi on September 7, 2017 becoming the first full-time woman Defence Minister of the country.

Senior journalist Gauri Lankesh shot dead by unidentified assailants at Bengaluru residence on September 5, 2017. Gauri Lankesh was the editor of Lankesh Patrike, a weekly Kanna

The Bharatiya Janata Party, on December 18, 2017, wins majority of the seats in the Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh assembly elections.

Anny Divya became world’s youngest woman commander to fly Boeing 777 at the age of 30.

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