CURRENTS AFFAIRS 19th MARCH TO 26th MARCH 2020

Keep yourself updated in this lockdown and use the time to become the best version of yourself. Ambition Quest Institute Chandigarh here gives you the current affair capsule divided into sections. Ab selection durr nahin

Current Affairs 19th to 26th March 2020

INTERNATIONAL NEWS:

1.      The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has introduced an AI bot called Clara to help people in assessing the potential symptoms of COVID-19. The CDC has partnered up with CDC Foundation and Microsoft Azure’s Healthcare Bot service to create Clara.

·       Chief Executive Officer of Microsoft: Satya Nadella

·       Founded: April 4, 1975

·       Headquarters: Washington, United States

2.      The IMF has launched a Tracker of Policies Governments are Taking in Response to COVID-19. The policy tracker covers the responses on the basis of three pillars, namely: Fiscal; Monetary And Macro-Financial and Exchange Rate And Balance Of Payments.

·       Managing Director of IMF: Kristalina Georgieva

3.      Famous Indian footballer Sunil Chhetri selected for FIFA campaign against Covid-19. WHO and FIFA have joined hands to fight the coronavirus by starting a new awareness campaign which will be led by world-renowned footballers.

·        FIFA foundation: 21 May 1904

·        Headquarters of FIFA: Zurich, Switzerland

·        President of FIFA: Gianni Infantino

·        Headquarters of WHO: Geneva, Switzerland

·        Director general of WHO: Tedros Adhanom

4.      Canada has withdrawn its name from Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

·        Official mascot Olympics 2020: Miraitowa

·        Date Olympics 2020: 24th July to 9th August 2020

·        Capital of Japan: Tokyo

·        Currency of Japan: Japanese yen

·        Prime Minister of Japan: Shinzo Abe

5.      Netflix Inc (NFLX.O) has established the fund of $100 million to help workers on television productions and films which have been badly affected due to the global COVID 19 outbreak. 

·        Chief Executive Officer of Netflix: Reed Hastings

6.      Greecehanded over the Olympic Flame to Tokyo 2020 organizers after the suspension of Greece leg of torch relaydue to the COVID-19 pandemic.

·        Capital of Greece: Athens

·        Currency of Greece: Euro

·        President of Greece: Katerina Sakellaropoulou

7.      WhatsApp has launched “WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub”globally in partnership with the WHO, United Nations Children’s Fund, and United Nations Development Programme.

·        Administrator of United Nations Development Programme: Achim Steiner

·        Executive Director of UNICEF: Henrietta H. Fore

·        Headquarters of Whatsapp: Menlo Park, California

·        CEO of Whatsapp: Jan Koum

8.      President of the United States of America, Donald Trump has signed a $100-billion emergency aid package to ensure sick leave of the American workers who fall ill from the COVID-19. The relief package will facilitate free coronavirus testing for the needy.

·       Capital of USA: Washington, D.C

·       Currency of USA: US Dollar

 

9.      Iraqi President Barham Salih has appointed Adnan al-Zurfi as the country’s new prime minister. Adnan al-Zurfi will succeed Mohammed Allawi.

·       Capital of Iraq: Baghdad

·       Currency of Iraq: Iraqi dinar

NATIONAL AND STATE NEWS:

1.      The Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced scheme named Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan worth package of 1.7 lakh crore rupees which will assist the migrant workers and poor people affected by the lockdown amid COVID-19 pandemic.

2.      India’s national Investment Promotion & Facilitation Agency the Invest India has launched The Invest India Business Immunity Platform to assist businesses and investors in getting real-time updates on India’s active response to COVID-19.

·       MD & CEO of Invest India: Deepak Bagla

·       Union Minister for Commerce and Industry: Piyush Goyal

·       Chairman & Managing Director of SIDBI: Mohammad Mustafa

3.      GoI has banned the export of anti-malarial drug Hydroxychloroquine and the formulations made up of it within the wake of COVID-19 outbreak.

·       Director-General of ICMR: Balram Bhargava.

·       Headquarters: New Delhi

4.      Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) has designated 285 beds for isolation wards in handling Coronavirus cases. The OFB is also trying to produce personal protection equipment and face masks as per the order placed by HLL Lifecare Limited (HLL).

·       Director-General && Chairman of Ordnance Factories: Hari Mohan

·       Headquarters of Ordnance Factory Board: Kolkata, West Bengal

5.      Election Commission of India has permitted the use of indelible ink on persons for stamping for home quarantine by health authorities’ insight of COVID-19.

·       Chief Election Commissioner of India: Sunil Arora

6.      Odisha’s Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik launched Mo Jeeban programme in Odisha for the containment of COVID-19 pandemic. Through Mo Jeeban programme, the chief minister of Odisha urged the people of the state to take a pledge to stay indoors.

·       Capital: Bhubaneshwar

·       Chief Minister of Odisha: Naveen Patnaik

·       Governor: Ganeshi Lal

7.      Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced the complete lockdown of the entire nation for 21 days from 25th march 2020 to 15th April 2020. This step has been taken as a part to tackle COVID-19.

8.      Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced the that the Finance Ministry has decided to extend the Income Tax Return (ITR) filing deadline for the Fiscal Year 2019 from 31st March 2020 to 30th June 2020.

9.      IIT Madras will organise country’s’s first Global Hyperloop Pod Competition. The competition will be named Indian Hyperloop Pod Competition. Hyperloop is mode of transportation i.e a high-speed train that travels in a near-vacuum tube.

10.   Telugu New Year day Ugadi was celebrated on 24th march 2020. The festival was celebrated across both the Telugu states Telangana and Andhra Pradesh to mark the beginning of the Hindu Lunar calendar.

·       Capital of Andhra Pradesh: Amaravati

·       Capital of Telangana: Hyderabad

·       Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh: Y. S. Jaganmohan Reddy

·       Chief Minister of Telangana: K. Chandrashekar Rao

·       Governor of Andhra Pradesh: Biswabhusan Harichandan

·       Governor of Telangana: Tamilisai Soundararajan

11.   My lab Patho Detect COVID-19 Qualitative PCR kit has been approved as the first Made in India COVID19 Test Kit to get the CDSCO approval.

12.   The Rajya Sabha elections got deferred by the Election Commission of India.

·       Chief Election Commissioner: Sunil Arora

·       Chairman of Rajya Sabha: M. Venkaiah Naidu

13.   Indian Oil Corporation Limited has started the supply of BS-VI fuel across the nation. Bharat Satge-VI is the world’s cleanest fuel containing just 10 parts per million of sulphur.

·       Chairman of Indian Oil Corporation Limited: Sanjiv Singh

14.   The United Kingdom is confirmed as the first co-chair of the Governing Council of Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI). CDRI is an India-led global climate initiative which was established by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the UN Climate Action Summit 2019.

·       Capital of the UK: London

·       Currency of the UK: UK Pound

·       Prime Minister of UK: Boris Johnson

15.   With the introduction of the taser guns as part of police weapons Gujarat has become the first state in India whose police is equipped with the modernised weapons. The taser guns is an electrical weapon that use compressed nitrogen to fire by sending electricity through attached wires which disrupt voluntary control of muscles.

·       Capital of Gujarat: Gandhinagar

·       Chief Minister of Gujarat: Vijay Rupani

·       Governor of Gujarat: Acharya Dev Vrat

 

16.   Shivraj Singh Chouhan was sworn in as Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh.

·       Capital of Madhya Pradesh: Bhopal

·       Governor of Madhya Pradesh: Lal Ji Tandon

17.   The Union Cabinet has approved Production Incentive Scheme for Large Scale Electronics Manufacturing proposed by the Government of India. Cabinet has also approved financial assistance to the Modified Electronics Manufacturing Clusters Scheme (EMC2.0) for development of world class infrastructure through Electronics Manufacturing Clusters.

18.   Shaheed Diwas was celebrated on 23rd March to pay tribute to martyrs Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev Thapar, and Shivaram Rajguru

19.   Uttarakhand government has abolished reservation in promotion in the state government jobs.

·       Capital: Dehradun

·       Chief Minister: Trivendra Singh Rawat

·       Governor: Baby Rani Maurya

20.   The RBI will infuse liquidity funds of Rs 30,000 crore by purchase of Government securities under Open Market Operations (OMOs) to maintain financial stability in the Indian economy due to outbreak of COVID-19. 

21.   Four convicts in Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma, Akshay Kumar and Mukesh Kumar were hanged to death at Tihar jail in Delhi on 20th march 2020.

22.   Former Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi took oath as a nominated member of Rajya Sabha.

23.   The GOI has approved the proposal of setting up of National Technical Textiles Mission with an outlay of Rs. 1480 crores. The mission would be set up for a period of 4 years from 2020 to 2024.

·       Union Minister of Textiles: Smriti Zubin Irani

24.   Indian Navy has established a Quarantine Camp at INS Vishwakarma in Eastern Naval Command for Indian nationals being evacuated from COVID-19 affected countries.

·       Chief of Naval Staff: Admiral Karambir Singh

25.   The Supreme court of India cleared permanent commission for women officers in the Indian Navy. A bench headed by Justice D Y Chandrachud said there cannot be any excuses for not granting gender equality in the armed forces.

·       Indian Navy Day: 4th December

 

BOOKS AND AUTHORS:

 

1.       Chander Suta Dogra has launched a book Missing in Action: The Prisoners Who Never Came Back. The book is published by Harpercollins and addresses the missing Indian soldiers during the mission of 1965 & 1971 Indo- Pak wars.

2.       ‘Legacy Of Learning’ authored by Savita Chhabra released her very first novel.Savita Chhabra is the chairperson at Hygienic Research Institute Private Limited (HRIPL).

3.       ‘Messiah Modi: A Great tale of expectations’authored by senior journalist & author Tavleen Singh is released. The book is published by HarperCollins India.

4.       “My Encounters in Parliament” authored by Bhalchandra Mungekar released.

5.       The book titled “Invincible – A Tribute to Manohar Parrikar”, authored by Tarun Vijay was released by defence minister Rajnath Singh on 16th March 2020.

 

DEFENCE NEWS:

1.      US Marines and UAE Emirati forces conducted the biennial exercise, named Native Fury at Abu Dhabi.

·        Capital of UAE: Abu Dhabi

·        Currency: United Arab Emirates dirham

·        President of UAE: Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan

2.      The Indian Ministry of Defence has signed the capital acquisition contract of worth Rs 880 crore with Israel Weapons Industries for the procurement of Light Machine Gun (LMGs).

·        Chief of Army Staff: General Manoj Mukund Naravane

3.      The Indian Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved the procurement of indigenous Tejas fighter aircraft for Indian Air Force.

·        Chief of the Air Staff: Air Chief Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria

 

SPORTS NEWS:

1.    The International Olympic Committee and Tokyo Olympic organizers agreed to postpone the Tokyo Olympics Games to 2021 as the world battles the coronavirus pandemic.

·       International Olympic Committee foundation: 23 June 1894

·       Headquarters of International Olympic Committee: Lausanne, Switzerland

·       President of International Olympic Committee: Thomas Bach

2.    Vrinda Rathi and Janani Narayanan have been named in the International Panel of ICC Development Umpires.

·       Headquarters of ICC: Dubai, United Arab Emirates

·       Chairman of ICC: Shashank Manohar

·       Chief Executive of ICC: Manu Sahney

 

IMPORTANT DAYS:

1.   The International Day of Solidarity with Detained and Missing Staff Members was observed on 25thMarch by the United Nations on the anniversary of the abduction of Alec Collett.

·        Secretary-General of the United Nations: Antonio Guterres

2.   The International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade was observed on 25th March. The theme of day for year 2020 was “Confronting Slavery’sLegacy of Racism Together”.

3.   World Tuberculosis (TB) Day was observed globally on 24th March. The theme of World TB Day 2020 was ‘It’s time’.

·       WHO Director General: Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

 

4.   The International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims was observed on 24th March. This day is observed every year to pay tribute to “Monsignor Óscar Arnulfo Romero” as he was murdered on 24 March 1980.

 

5.   World Meteorological Day was observed on 23rd March. This year, World Water Day and World Meteorological Day shared the same theme “Water and Climate Change”.

 

·       WMO headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland

·       A total 191 member states and territories

 

6.   World Water Day was observed on 22nd March. The theme for 2020 was “Water and Climate Change”.

 

7.   International Nowruz Day was celebrated on 21st March.

8.   World Poetry Day is observed on 21st March.

 

9.   World Down Syndrome Day is observed on 21st March. The theme of World Down Syndrome Day 2020 was “We Decide”.

10.              The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is observed on 21st March.

11.              The International Day of Forests was celebrated on 21st March. The theme for International Day of Forests 2020 was Forests and Biodiversity.

12.              The International Day of Happiness was celebrated globally on 20th March. The theme for 2020 was ‘Happiness For All, Together’.

13.              The Global Recycling Day was observed globally on 18th March. “Recycling Heroes” was the theme for 2020.

 

OBITUARIES:

1.      The co-creator of the Asterix and Obelix comics Albert Uderzo passed away.

2.      Veteran star of 1950-60s Hindi movies Nimmi passed away. She was born as Nawab Banoo and was later known by by her screen name Nimmi.

3.      Former India footballer Abdul Latif passed away. He was a key member of the trophy-winning team at the 1970 Bangkok Asian Games.

4.      Veteran director Meenakshisundaram Ramasamy Viswanthan has passed away. He was popularly known as Visu in the Tamil film industry.

5.      Legendary Indian footballer PK Banerjee passed away. He was the first footballer who received the Arjuna Award in 1961 and was also honoured with the Padma Shri in 1990.

6.      American music singer Kenny Rogers has passed away. He won three Grammy awards in is six-decade long career.

7.      Former world boxing champion Roger Mayweather passed away.

 

AWARDS AND ACHIEVEMENTS:

1.      Ruchika Tomar has won the PEN/Hemingway Award 2020 for her Debut Novel A Prayer for Travelers.

2.      The Hillel Furstenberg from Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel and Gregory Margulis from Yale University, the USA has won the Abel Prize 2020 for their “pioneering use of methods from probability & dynamics in group theory, number theory and combinatorics”. The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has awarded this to the mentioned universities.

·       Capital of Norway: Oslo

·       Currency of Norway: Norwegian Krone

·       Prime Minister of Norway: Erna Solberg

 

 

APPOINTMENTS:

 

1.      Sameer Aggarwal is appointed as the Chief Executive Officer of Walmart India. He will take over Krish Iyer with effect from 1st April 2020.  

·       President and CEO of Walmart Inc.: Doug McMillon

2.      A. Ajay Kumar has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to the Republic of Uganda.

·       Union Minister of External Affairs: Subrahmanyam Jaishankar

·       Capital of Uganda: Kampala

·       Currency of Uganda: Ugandan shilling

·       President of Uganda: Yoweri Museveni

                         AGREEMENTS AND DEALS:

1.                A MoU is signed in between APEDA (Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority) and SFAC (Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium) for the development of agriculture and allied sectors as well as its exports for bringing better value to the stakeholders.

2.                DBS Bank India and Bharti AXA has teamed up to launch a complimentary insurance plan which will cover all medical conditions, including Covid-19. This insurance plan will also include up to 10 days of hospitalisation along with a cover of Rs 5,000 per day for a 30-day period.

·       MD & CEO of Bharti Axa: Sanjeev Srinivasan

 

3.                The Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur and L&T Technology Services have collaborated to carry out joint research in industrial and infrastructure cybersecurity.

·       Headquarters of L&T Technology: Vadodara, Gujarat

·       CEO of L&T Technology Services: Dr Keshab Panda

 

SUMMITS AND CONFERENCES:

 

1.      Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud will chair the Extraordinary Virtual G20 leaders’ Summit.

·       The mentioned countries are members of the G20 group are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Republic of Korea, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union (EU).

2.      The 7th World Cities Summit (WCS) will be held in Singapore. It is organized by Singapore’s Centre for Liveable Cities and the Urban Redevelopment Authority. The theme for WCS 2020 is Livable and Sustainable Cities: Adapting to a Disrupted World.

·       Capital of Singapore: Singapore

·       Currency of Singapore: Singapore dollar

MISCELLANEOUS NEWS (BANKING, REPORTS AND RANKING AND OTHERS)

 

1.      All India Institute of Medical Sciences New Delhi will start Tele-Consultation facility for the non-Covid19 patients. Those patients whose appointments are now cancelled due to lockdown as well as the chronic patients can consult doctors via this facility.

·       Director of AllMS Delhi: Dr Randeep Guleria. 

2.      The National Book Trust India has launched an initiative #StayHomeIndiaWithBooks to encourage people to read books during their stay at home. Through this initiative, NBT is providing people its selected and bestselling titles for FREE Download. These books are available in various languages and covering various genres.

·       Chairman of NBT: Govind Prasad Sharma

·       Established: 1957

3.      YouTube has decided to reduce streaming quality i.e temporarily default High Definition (HD) and ultra-High Definition (HD) streaming to Standard Definition (SD) content for users in India until 31st March 2020 to reduce strain on Internet networks during the coronavirus pandemic. 

·       CEO of YouTube: Susan Wojcicki

4.      Union Minister of Finance, Nirmala Sitharaman announced that charges on cash withdrawal from other bank ATMs and penalties for non-maintenance of minimum balance in bank savings accounts have been waived for 3 months.

5.      Karur Vysya Bank has launched India’s 1st pre-paid card Enkasu (My cash in Tamil) in Karur, Tamil Nadu under its Quit cash movement. The card functions on Near Field Communication Technology (NFC) in a semi closed-loop & the customers buying this card can make ‘tap & go’ payments for even small purchases to merchants from an amount of Rs. 1 to doing away with the need for cash & small change.

·       Headquarters of Karur Vysya Bank: Karur, Tamil Nadu

·       MD & CEO of Karur Vysya Bank: P. R. Seshadri

·       Tagline of Karur Vysya Bank: Smart Way to Bank

6.      Reliance Industries Limited has set up India’s first COVID-19 dedicated hospital in Mumbai. RIL has opened this Hospital in collaboration with the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).

·       Reliance Industries Ltd Founder: Dhirubhai Hirachand Ambani

·       Reliance Industries Ltd Chief Executive Officer: Mukesh Dhirubhai Ambani

·       Reliance Industries Ltd Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra

7.      The State Bank of India has launched an additional liquidity facility Covid-19 Emergency Credit Line (CECL) to meet any liquidity mismatch for its borrowers.

·       Chairperson of SBI: Rajnish Kumar

·       Headquarters of SBI: Mumbai

·       Foundation of SBI: 1 July 1955

8.      The Reserve Bank of India has decided to conduct the variable rate Repo auctions as a preventive measure to bridge over any frictional liquidity requirements caused by COVID-19. The RBI will conduct fine-tuning variable rate Repo auctions for Rs 1,00,000 crores in two tranches.

·       RBI 25th Governor: Shakti kant Das

·       Headquarters of RBI: Mumbai

·       Foundation of RBI: 1 April 1935, Kolkata

9.      ICICI Lombard has launched a 1 year-long “COVID-19 Protection Cover” which will pay 100% of the sum insured to the COVID-19 positive individual, irrespective of hospitalization expenses. Headquarters of ICICI Lombard: Mumbai.

·       MD & CEO of ICICI Lombard: Bhargav Dasgupta

10.   Fitch Ratings has recorder drop in India’s GDP growth rate from 5.6% to 5.1% for the fiscal year 2020-21.

11.   Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) has decided to launch a special train Swavalamban Express to empower budding entrepreneurs under its mission Swavalamban.

·       Headquarters of SIDBI: Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh

·       Chairman and MD of SIDBI: Mohammad Mustafa

12.   Indian mountaineer Satyarup Siddhanta entered Limca Book of Records (LBR) for his extraordinary achievements, as the first Indian to climb the highest volcanoes of each of the 7 continents.

13.   Indian Railways has planned to electrify a total of 28,810 km of broad gauge route by December 2023. As part of its solar mission, it plans to source approximately 1000 megawatt (MW) of solar power & to source around 200 MW of wind power.

Union Minister of Ministry of Railways: Piyush Goyal