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Important Current Affairs 18th March 2020

National

Microsoft, NASSCOM launches Innovate for Accessible India campaign

• Microsoft India and NASSCOM Foundation have launched the Innovate for Accessible India campaign to empower people with disabilities.

• The campaign aims at empowering people with disabilities with the technology and tools required for better integration into society and access to equal opportunities.

• The campaign is in partnership with Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Department of Science and Technology, and National Research and Education Network.

International

Iraq's President nominates Adnan Zurfi as Prime Minister

• Iraq's President Barham Salih named Adnan Zurfi, former governor of the holy Shia city of Najaf, the new prime minister of the country. It is a second attempt to find the head of government in recent months.

• He will replace outgoing Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi. Mahdi resigned from his post in December after huge protests against his government.

Banking and Economy

Flipkart Joins Hand with Aegon to sell digital life insurance policies

• E-commerce major Flipkart has partnered with Aegon Life Insurance to sell paperless life insurance policies on its platform.

• The product aims to make life insurance available to customers at the click of a button in a convenient and transparent manner, without the requirement of medical tests or paperwork.

• All the existing Flipkart customers, aged between 18 and 65 years, can buy an instant digital policy with a sum assured of upto 10 lakh from March 2020.

Moody predicts India’s GDP growth at 5.3% for 2020, 5.8% in 2021

• Moody’s Investors Service has predicted India’s GDP growth rate for Calendar Year 2020 at 5.3% and for Calendar Year 2021 at 5.8%.

• Moody has downgraded the GDP estimates for 2020 on account of the Coronavirus outbreak.

Science and Technology

NavIC messaging system designed by ISRO

• Union Minister of State for Fisheries, Pratap Chandra Sarangi recently shared that the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has developed the NavIC messaging system to put out warning messages to Indian fishermen about cyclones, tsunamis and high waves.

• The ISRO has also developed NavIC receiver.

IHBT scientists develop a new sanitizer

• A team of scientists from the Institute of Himalayan Bio-resource Technology (IHBT) in collaboration with the CSIR has developed a new hand-sanitizer to protect people from Coronavirus.

• The use of hand-sanitizers is one of the preventive measures against the Covid-19.IHBT is located in Palampur, Himachal Pradesh.

Days

Ordnance Factories’ Day in India

• Every year, 18 March is celebrated as the Ordnance Factory Day in India. OFB is the world's largest government-operated production organisation, and the oldest organisation run by the Government of India.

• It has a total workforce of about 80,000.

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