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Important Current Affairs 20th February 2020


 “Bezos Earth Fund” : to combat climate change launched by Jeff Bezos:

• Through this fund, Jeff Bezos has committed to contribute $10 billion to help preserve and protect the natural world against the climate change.

• The Bezos Earth Fund will fund the scientists, activists, NGOs to save Earth to tackle the issue of climate change.

• Key points:

CEO of Amazon: Jeff Bezos.

Amazon was established on 5th July 1994.

 Headquarters: Washington, USA.

Nepal’s  70th National Democracy Day:

• Nepal celebrates the National Democracy Day every year on Falgun 7 to commemorate the attainment of democracy after the abolition of the 104-year long autocratic Rana Regime.

• In 2007 Bikram Sambat, on this day, democracy was established in the Himalayan nation ending over a century old autocratic Rana regime.

• Prime minister of Nepal: KP Sharma Oli.

• President of Nepal: Bidhya Devi Bhandari.

• Capital of Nepal: Kathmandu; Currency of Nepal: Nepalese rupee.


Delhi's IGI Airport becomes single-use plastic free airport:

• The Delhi International Airport Ltd has declared “Indira Gandhi International Airport” of Delhi as India’s first single-use plastic-free airport.

• The CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development has certified Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) as single-use plastic-free airport.

Kala Kumbh exhibition,  New Delhi : Organized by Ministry of Textiles:

• The Ministry of Textiles organized “Kala Kumbh” exhibition in New Delhi. It is an exhibition to promote Geographical Indication (GI) craft and heritage of India.

• The exhibitions are planned in various major cities like Bengaluru, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Chennai. The exhibitions are sponsored by the Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH).

• The GI tag is used on handicrafts which correspond to a specific geographical location or origin (e.g., a town, region, or country). As of August 2019, 178 GI handicraft products were registered from all over India.

• Union Minister of Textiles: Smriti Zubin Irani.

Cabinet approves formation of non-statutory body for a term of three years:

• The government constitutes a 22nd law commission as per the requirement.

• It was originally formed in 1955.The commission is reorganized for three years.

• The term of the 21st Law Commission ended on August 31, 2018.The Law Commission is a non-statutory body.

• Responsibilities of 22nd Law Commission

• It will identify laws that are no longer needed or are irrelevant and can be repealed immediately.

• The 22nd Law Commission will examine the existing laws and suggest ways for reforms. It will also suggest the necessary laws to implement the Directive Principles mentioned in the Preamble of the Constitution.

• It will take all necessary measures to use law and legal processes in the service of poor people.

• The law commission will revise the laws of general importance to simplify them and remove anomalies, ambiguities, and inequities.

Central Consumer Protection Authority to be set up by Govt by first week of April:

• Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan has stated the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) will be set up by the first week of April this year.

• The CCPA to be set up under Consumer Protection Act 2019, will address issues related to consumer rights, unfair trade practices, misleading advertisements and impose penalties for selling spurious and adulterated products.

Phase two of Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen approved:

• Union Cabinet has approved the 2nd Phase of the Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen till 2024-25.

• The program will work towards ensuring that no one is left behind and everyone uses a toilet.

• The 2nd phase of the mission will be implemented in a mission mode with a total estimated budgeted financial implication of 52 thousand 497 crore rupees.

• The 2nd phase of the mission will focus on Open Defecation Free Plus (ODF Plus), which includes ODF sustainability and Solid and Liquid Waste Management (SLWM).

 Symposium on Emerging Opportunities for Indian Textiles and Crafts:

• Symposium on Emerging Opportunities for Indian Textiles and Crafts was held in New Delhi.

• The symposium was chaired by Union Minister of Textiles and Women and Child Development Smriti Zubin Irani.

• Senior officers of the Ministries of Commerce & Industry and Textiles, representatives of Export Promotion Council (EPCs), buying offices and buying agents participated in the symposium.

• They participated in the symposium to discuss the business opportunities emerging in view of the present scenario of ‘CORONA VIRUS” in China.

• The symposium was organized by Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts under the aegis of Ministry of Textiles, Government of India.

BS-VI Fuel: India To Switch To World’s Cleanest Petrol, Diesel From April 1:

• India will switch to the world’s cleanest petrol and diesel from April 1 as it leapfrogs straight to Euro-VI emission compliant fuels from Euro-IV grades now.

• This has been achieved in just three years and not seen in any of the large economies around the globe.

• India will join the select league of nations using petrol and diesel containing just 10 parts per million of sulphur as it looks to cut vehicular emissions that are said to be one of the reasons for the choking pollution in major cities.

• State-owned oil refineries spent about 35,000 crore rupees to upgrade plants that could produce ultra-low sulphurBS-VI has a sulphur content of just 10 ppm and emission standards are as good as CNG..


SEZs continue to take lead in expanding exports:

• The Special Economic Zones, SEZ continue to take the lead in expanding the exports for the country.

• Ev

en in the midst of a volatile global economy, SEZs in India have shown resilience and have achieved 100 billion dollar worth of exports so far.

• Sectors that saw healthy growth in this financial year include gems and jewelry, trading and Logistics, leather and footwear, non-conventional energy, textiles and garments.

• Petrochemicals constitute a major segment of SEZ exports, however, growth was muted in this segment this year which may be attributed to the softening of global crude prices.

• There are 241 SEZs operational in the country.

MSME loan: Gujarat govt partners with SBI to facilitate MSME:

• The Gujarat government signed an MoU with State Bank of India (SBI) to facilitate approval of loans to entrepreneurs in the MSME sector with ease and within a short time-frame.

• As per the MoU, the top public sector lender will provide working capital to entrepreneurs seeking to start new micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) within a short time -frame after providing theoretical approval within 15 days of making an application.

• The MoU was signed between principal secretary M K Das and SBI Ahmedabad circle general manager Ramesh Kumar Agarwal.

• The SBI decided to help MSME entrepreneurs in Gujarat looking at their high recovery rate.

• About State Bank of India(SBI):

• Chairperson– Rajnish Kumar.

• Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra.

• Former name– Imperial Bank of India.

• Tagline– The Banker to Every Indian; With you all the way; Purely Banking Nothing Else; The Nation Banks on Us.


India will host AFC Women’s Asian Cup in 2022:

• India has been selected to host the 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup.

• This was announced by the Women’s Committee of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC)  in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on 19 February 2020.


Nritya Gopal Das elected as the president of Ram Mandir Trust:

• Mahant Nritya Gopal Das was elected as the president of the Ram Janmabhoomi Teertha Kshetra Trust. 

• Champat Rai would be the general secretary of the trust.

• The first meeting of the Ram Mandir Trust to oversee the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya was held in New Delhi.

• The meeting also decided that Nripendra Mishra, former Principal Secretary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will head a committee to make decisions regarding the actual construction of the temple.


India Ranks 77th on Sustainability Index and 131st in Child Flourishing Index rankings: UN report:

• India has been ranked at 77th position in the Sustainability Index 2020 and 131st on the Flourishing Index 2020, according to a UN-backed report.

• The report released on 19 February 2020 commissioned by the World Health Organization (WHO), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and The Lancet medical journal.

• The Sustainability Index 2020 takes into account per capita carbon emissions and ability of children in a nation to live healthy lives. It ranks countries on excess carbon emissions compared with the 2030 target.


World Day of Social Justice observed:

• The World Social Justice Day is celebrated on February 20 every year. It aims to face the problem of poverty, unemployment, and abandonment. This year’s theme is - Closing the Inequalities Gap to Achieve Social Justice.

• This day highlights that gender equality, social security and the rights of migrants are essential for social justice.

• United Nation believes that social justice can be ensured only when people do not face problems due to gender, age, race, religion or culture.

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