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Important Current Affairs 9th May 2020

National

Defence Minister inaugurates link road to Mansarovar Yatra

• The 80 km long link road to Mansarovar Yatra was inaugurated recently by the Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. The road starts from Dharchula in Uttarakhand to Lipulek, China Border.

•  The road will not only reduce the time taken to cover Kailash-Mansarovar pilgrimage but will also boost border area connectivity.

UP suspends labour laws for 1000 days to boost investment

• Uttar Pradesh government has decided to suspend majority of the labour laws for a period of 1000 years or over 3 years to attract investment. The move is expected to make UP a favourable destination for investment in existing and new industrial units.

• The government will soon set up a Japanese Help Desk to attract investors from Japan.

ICMR partners India Post for delivery of testing kits

• Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has entered into a tie-up with the India Post for delivery of its testing kits.

Defence Ministry signs contract with Tata Power SED for infra modernisation at 37 airfields

• The Ministry of Defence has signed a pact with the TATA POWER SED to modernize infrastructure of 37 airfields of Indian Air Force. The total cost of the project is estimated to be around Rs 1,200 crore.

• The contract has been signed in Two Phases. Under 1st-Phase of the contract is to Modernization of Airfield Infrastructure, the airfields of the Indian Air Force were upgraded.

 Banking and Economy

AIIB approves USD 500 million loan to support India’s fight

• Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has approved a loan worth of $500 million for India’s Emergency Response. The assistance will help India to scale up efforts to restrict the transmission of instances, strengthen the public health system to broaden its response capability and to improve preparedness to handle future outbreaks.

Nomura predicts Indian GDP for FY21 at -5.2%

• Nomura has made the following GDP growth/contraction prediction for India for various years:

• For year 2020 (Jan-Dec 2020)= -5.0% (contraction by 5%)

• For FY21 (April 2020 to March 2021)= -5.2% (contraction by 5.2%)

• For year 2021= 7.9%

Moody’s cuts India’s GDP growth to “zero” in FY21

• Moody’s cuts down India’s Gross Domestic Product(GDP) growth to “zero” for the current fiscal 2020-21. Its previous estimate was 2.6%.

• In 2021-22 India’s GDP growth rate will bounce back to 6.6%.

Goldman Sachs predicts India’s GDP growth at -0.4% for FY21

• The global investment banking group, Goldman Sachs has predicted India’s GDP growth for FY21 at -0.4%.

• It means as per Goldman Sachs the GDP of India will contract by 0.4% in FY21.

Days

World Migratory Bird Day

• World Migratory Bird Day is observed globally on 9 May every year. The aim of the day is to raise awareness of migratory birds and the importance of international cooperation to conserve them.

• This time the theme of World Migratory Bird Day 2020 is “Birds Connect Our World”.

World Thalassaemia Day

• World Thalassaemia Day is observed on every 8th of May to create awareness about the disease and help thalassaemia patients lead a normal life.

• The theme for the International Thalassaemia Day 2020 is ‘The dawning of a new era for thalassaemia’.

• Thalassaemia is a blood disorder in which your body has less hemoglobin than normal.

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Important Current Affairs 8th May 2020

National

AarogyaSetu IVRS service launched for feature phones & landline

• The AarogyaSetu IVRS service was launched recently to help people with landlines and feature phones. The IVRS is a toll-free service that can be used by people across the country by giving a missed call at 1921 number.

• Once the user gives a missed call, he or she will get a call back from officials asking for their health. The questions will be aligned with the app.

Government Launches Biggest Ever Evacuation Exercise ‘Vande Bharat Mission’ to bring Indians Stranded Abroad

• The Government of India has launched its biggest ever evacuation exercises named the Vande Bharat Mission, to bring home nearly 15,000 Indian nationals stranded abroad.

• Under the mission, to be undertaken in phased manner, the government will operate 64 flights from 07 May till May 13, 2020, to repatriate its citizens from 12 countries..

Niti Aayog Launches Campaign ”Surakshit Dada-Dadi & Nana-Nani Abhiyan” to protect senior citizens

• The Government think tank NITI Aayog has launched a campaign titled ”Surakshit Dada-Dadi & Nana-Nani Abhiyan” to ensure well-being of senior citizens of the country.

• The campaign has been launched in association with Piramal Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Piramal Group.

International

Iran changes national currency from 'rial' to 'toman'

•  Iranian lawmakers voted on May 4, 2020 to change Iran’s national currency from ‘rial’ to ‘toman’. The lawmakers approved an amendment to Iran’s Monetary and Banking Act of Iran to make the change.

•  Under the amended law, the existing currency of Iran will continue to remain valid alongside "toman" for two years, during which the old coins and bills will be gradually collected to replace them with new ones.

•  The new currency is equal to 10,000 rials, marking a reduction of four zeros. The new currency has been introduced amid the sharp fall in the value of Iranian currency as a result of crippling sanctions imposed by the United States.

Banking and Economy

EU forecasts deep and uneven recession in 2020

• The European Commission recently released spring economic forecast that projects Europe’s economy to witness a record decline of 7.7 percent this year.

•  The economic projections hint at a "recession of historic proportions" in 2020 as an impact of current situation. Europe is currently facing worst ever recession since the Great Depression in 1930

Ranking

Delhi Top State in Internet Penetration Followed by Kerala: IAMAI Report

• Delhi has emerged as the top most state with the highest Internet penetration rate among all the other states of India, according to a study titled ‘Digital in India’ by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI). The study has been curated by Nielsen and based on IRS data.

• Delhi is followed by Kerala at second position in terms of internet penetration, means the number of internet users.

• In terms of cities, Mumbai has registered highest number of Internet users, which is estimated to be 13 million. Delhi is ranked second with 11.3 million, followed by Bengaluru (6.6 million), Kolkata (6.3 million) and Chennai (6 million) respectively.

Days

World Athletics Day 2020 observed globally on 7 May

• The World Athletics Day-2020 is observed on the 7 May. The date is subject to adjustment, the date of World Athletics Day is decided by the IAAF, however, the month stays the same as May.

• The first World Athletics Day was observed in 1996. The basic objective of World Athletics Day is to boost the participation of youths in athletics.

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Important Current Affairs 6th May 2020

National

Indian Navy launches “SamudraSetu” Operation

• The Indian Navy has launched ‘SamudraSetu’ operation as a part of the nation's efforts to bring back Indian citizens from abroad. The operation’s name means ‘sea bridge’.

• Under the operation, INS Jalashwa and Magar have departed for the port of Male in the Maldives to begin the evacuation of Indian citizens.

Government launches Saras Collection on GeM Portal

• The Government has introduced a new initiative, ‘The Saras Collection’ on Government e Marketplace (GeM) portal, which will showcase exquisitely handcrafted products from finest Self Help Groups in India.

• This new platform was inaugurated by Union Minister of Rural Development Narendra Singh Tomar on 4th May 2020 in New Delhi, to help SHGs in accessing government markets.

• The Saras collection has exclusively been designed to showcase the daily utility products handmade by rural Self Help Groups (SHGs), and to provide them with access to Central and State Government buyers.

50.37 lakh people internally displaced in India in 2019: UNICEF

• More than five million people (50,37,000) were internally displaced in India due to natural disasters, conflict and violence in 2019 as per “The Lost at Home’ report”, published by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

• India has the highest number of new internal displacements in the world in 2019. Philippines, Bangladesh and China are on 2nd, 3rd and 4th spot respectively.

International

China launches large rocket ‘ Long March 5B carrier’

• China's new Long March 5B carrier rocket took its maiden flight on May 5, 2020 carrying the trial version of the country's new-generation manned spaceship and a cargo return capsule for test into space.

• The large white rocket blasted off from Wenchang Space Launch Centre in China's island province of Hainan.

• The successful launch of the spacecraft is the third step towards China's manned space program, which includes the construction of a space station.

Science and Technology

DRDO develops "UV Blaster" sanitisation tower

• Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has developed an Ultraviolet (UV) disinfection tower for disinfecting areas that are high infection prone. The tower named ‘UV Blaster’ is an area sanitizer based on ultraviolet technology.

• The equipment has been designed and developed by Laser Science and Technology Centre (LASTEC), the Delhi-based premier laboratory of DRDO, with the help of New Age Instruments and Materials Private Limited, Gurugram.

Appointments and Resignations

Indian-origin Ashok Michael Pinto nominated to IBRD as US representative

• Indian-origin Ashok Michael Pinto has been nominated to International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) as a representative of the United States.

• Pinto's nomination was made by President Donald Trump for a period of two years. His appointment will become effective after the approval of US Senate.

Ranking

Amazon tops the BrandZ Top 75 Most Valuable Global Retail Brands 2020 Ranking

• Amazon has topped the BrandZ Top 75 Most Valuable Global Retail Brands 2020 ranking. BrandZ ranking was unveiled by WPP and Kantar. It has a brand value of $ 415.855 billion

• Alibaba is on the second rank followed by McDonald’s on the third spot.

Days

World Hand Hygiene Day

• Every year, the World Health Organization (WHO) marks the World Hand Hygiene Day  on May 5 to raise awareness among people across the globe about the importance of hand hygiene in warding off many serious infections.

• The theme for 2020 is ‘Save Lives: Clean Your Hands’.

World Asthma Day 2020

• The World Asthma Day takes place on the first Tuesday in the month of May.

• The day is annually organised by the Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) to raise asthma awareness, care and support around the world for those people who are affected by asthma.

• The theme of 2020 World Asthma Day is Enough Asthma Deaths.

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Important Current Affairs 5th May 2020

National

AarogyaSetuMitr Launched for online medical consultations, ePharmacy and home lab tests

• The mobile app AarogyaSetu launched by the Government of India has been upgraded to include a new private-public partnership initiative called AarogayaSetuMitr, to provide facilities for online medical consultations, ePharmacy and home lab tests.

• Upon selecting the AarogyaSetuMitr, user will be redirected to a new website, and won’t allow access to individual data from Aarogya Setu, so its safe.

• This new app has been developed in collaboration & partnership of the Principal Scientific Advisor to the Prime Minister and Niti Aayog and will operate under them.

Jal Shakti Ministry launches ‘IDEAthon’

• The National Mission for Clean Ganga operating under Ministry of Jal Shakti launched “IDEAthon”.

• The event examined how the social angle of rivers can be leveraged to address the health crisis. It also discussed the lessons taught by the pandemic and came to a conclusion that more attention is required towards river management.

Ameyo launches RBI compliant video KYC engagement platform

• A customer engagement technology provider, Ameyo has launched video KYC engagement platform for the banking and finance sector.

• The newly launched platform will eliminate the businesses’ requirement of physical KYC in accordance with latest RBI guidelines issued in January 2020. It is expected to decrease the customer on boarding process from the present 5-7 days to less than 3 minutes.

US-based Silver Lake buys 1.15% stake in Reliance Jio for Rs 5,655.75 cr

• American private equity giant Silver Lake Partners has announced to buy 1.15% stake in Jio Platforms for Rs 5,655.75 crore ($750 million).

• Jio Platforms, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) and works on digital apps, digital ecosystems and the mobile service.

• This deal values Jio Platforms at Rs 4.90 lakh crore on equity basis and Rs 5.15 lakh crore on enterprise value basis.

Banking and Economy

RBI cancels the licence of The CKP Co-operative Bank Ltd., Mumbai

• The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has cancelled the licence of “The CKP Co-operative Bank Ltd., Mumbai” due to non-compliance to various sections of Banking Regulation Act and RBI Act. The license has been cancelled with effect from the close of business on April 30, 2020.

• As a result “The CKP Co-operative Bank Ltd., Mumbai” is prohibited from conducting the business of ‘banking’ which includes acceptance of deposits and repayment of deposits.

Obituary

Padma Shri awardee K S Nisar Ahmed passes away

Renowned Kannada poet KS Nisar Ahmed passed away. He was popularly known as “NityotsavaKavi”. He was born in Devanahalli, Karnataka on February 5, 1936. He was awarded the Pampa Award (the highest literary award in Karnataka) in 2017. He also a recipient of the Rajyotsava award in 1981 and Padma Shri in 2008.

Sports

FINA postpones 2021 world championships to May 2022

• Swimming world governing body, Federation International de Natation(FINA) rescheduled the 2021 Fukuoka aquatics world championships to May 2022 to avoid a clash with the postponed Tokyo Olympics.

•  The new dates for the aquatics world championship in the Japanese city are May 13-29, 2022.

Days

International Firefighters’ Day

The International Firefighters’ Day (IFFD) is observed on May 4 every year since 1999, to recognise and honour the sacrifices that firefighters make to ensure that their communities and environment are as safe as possible.

International Day of the Midwife

• Every year the, International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) celebrates the International Day of the Midwife on 5 May, since 1992, to recognise the work of midwives and raise awareness about the status of midwives for the essential care they provide to mothers and their newborns.

• The theme for 2020 International Day of the Midwife is Midwives with women: celebrate, demonstrate, mobilise, unite – our time is NOW!

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Important Current Affairs 4th May 2020

National

‘One nation, one ration card’ scheme: 5 more states & UT’s added to the initiative

• 'One nation, one ration card' scheme will help 60 crore beneficiaries to purchase subsidized food grains using their existing ration card from the fair price shops anywhere in these 17 states and UT's.

• The newly approved states/UTs under this plan are Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu.

• Already this plan has been initiated in 12 states viz. Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Kerala, Karnataka Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Telangana and Tripura.

Banking and Economy

RBI permits Visa, Mastercard and NPCI for contact-free payments for any amount

•The Reserve Bank of India has permitted the country’s payment networks — Visa, Mastercard and NPCI to allow tap-and-go functionality on card payments for all purchases at retail stores and shopping centers.

•Earlier this facility was available for card payment up to amount Rs 2000. Now tap-and-go functionality will be available even for purchases made above Rs 2000.

•However, the transactions with are about Rs 2,000 shall be authenticated by PIN.

Awards

Indian-origin girl Vaneeza Rupani names NASA’s 1st Mars Helicopter

• 17-year-old, Indian-origin girl, VaneezaRupani has been honoured of naming the NASA’s 1st Mars helicopter ‘Ingenuity’. she submitted her essay into NASA’s “Name the Rover” contest.

• She has suggested the name ‘INGENUITY’ for the helicopter, which has been liked and accepted by NASA. She is a high school junior from Northport, Alabama.

Sports

Former World Snooker champion Peter Ebdon announces retirement

• Former World Snooker Champion Peter Ebdon has announced his retirement from professional snooker. He has announced his retirement after suffering from various neck and back injuries.

• Peter Ebdon was the winner of 2002 World Snooker championship when he defeated Stephen Hendry in an 18-17 final thriller.

Appointments and Resignations

Neeraj Dhawan appointed as Chief Risk Officer at Yes Bank

• Neeraj Dhawan has been appointed as the chief risk officer of Yes Bank with immediate effect.

• He will replace Ashish Agarwal and serve at the position for 3 years.

Days

World Press Freedom Day

• The World Press Freedom Day is observed on May 3 annually to raise awareness of the importance of freedom of the press and remind governments of their duty to respect and uphold the right to freedom of expression.

• The Day was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in December 1993.The theme of World Press Freedom Day 2020 is Journalism Without Fear or Favour.

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Important Current Affairs 3rd May 2020

National

CAIT to launch national e-commerce marketplace 'bharatmarket'

for retail traders

• Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) will soon launch a national e-commerce marketplace named ‘bharatmarket’ for all retail traders.

• The aim of the portal is to bring 95 percent of retail traders onboard the platform, who will be the shareholders. The portal will be run exclusively by the traders.

• The pilot of this project has been started in six cities — Prayagraj, Gorakhpur, Varanasi, Lucknow, Kanpur and Bengaluru.

• The marketplace will integrate capabilities of various technology companies to provide end-to-end services in the logistics and supply chains from manufacturers to end consumers, including deliveries at home.

CSIR-Central Road Research Institute develops “KisanSabha App”

• The CSIR-Central Road Research Institute (CSIR-CRRI), New Delhi has developed a mobile app KisanSabha to connect farmers with supply chain and freight transportation management system.

• The app will enable the farmers in seed/ fertilizer procurement as well as their harvest reaching the market, among other things and thus facilitate the timely delivery of the produce at the best possible prices.

• The KisanSabha App will also help in providing best market rates of crops by comparing nearest mandis, booking of freight vehicle at cheapest cost thereby giving maximum benefit to the farmers.

Kashmir saffron gets GI tag

• Kashmiri saffron, the pride of Jammu & Kashmir, has finally been granted Geographical Indication (GI) tag, thus symbolizing its exclusivity in the international market.

• These saffrons are cultivated and harvested in the Karewas (high lands) of Jammu & Kashmir, by the local farmers, and are known for its unique qualities, which can only be found in saffrons grown and produced in J&K.

• The unique characteristics of Kashmir saffron – longer and thicker stigmas, natural deep-red colour of stigmas, high aroma, bitter flavour, chemical-free processing and high quantity of crocin (colouring strength), safranal (flavour) and picrocrocin (bitterness).

• In India, GI registration is administered by the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 which came into force with effect from September 2003.  Darjeeling Tea(2004) is the 1st indian product to get a GI tag.

“Ramayana” becomes Highest Viewed Entertainment Programme Globally

• The epic mythological show Ramayan, by RamanandSagar, has scripted new world wide record of becoming the most watched entertainment programme in the world in 2020 as of April 16.

• This announcement was made by Doordharshan (DD) on its Twitter handle on 30 April 2020, based on the data released by Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India.

• As per DD, Ramayan has also clocked the highest viewership record on a single day and has reported a viewership of 7.7 crore as of 16 April 2020.

• Besides this, the record has also contributed to make DD as one of the most viewed channels.

Science and Technology

NASA partners with private companies for Moon-to-Mars campaign

The US space agency NASA has partnered with SpaceX, Blue Origin and Dynetics to build lunar landing systems that can carry astronauts to the moon by 2024.

The mission is accelerated under the space agency’s Moon-to-Mars campaign.For this project, the three companies will share $967 million from NASA.

Obituary

Delhi Historian RV Smith Passes Away at 81

Eminent historian, author and columnist Ronald Vivian Smith, who is best known for his writings on Delhi, passed away due to age-related ailments. He was 81.

Padma Shri Freedom Fighter HemaBharali from Assam, passes away at 101

• Assam born renowned freedom fighter and Padma Shri awardee HemaBharali passed away in Guwahati suffering from prolonged illness.She was 101.

• HemaBharali, who was born on 19 February 1919 was an Indian freedom activist, social worker, Sarvodaya leader and Gandhian known for her contributions for the empowerment of women and efforts towards the upliftment of the socially and financially challenged sections of the society.

• She had received the Padma Shri in 2005.

Appointments and Resignations

Mouhamadou Diagne Appointed Vice President of Integrity at the World Bank Group

• World Bank Group President David Malpass today announced the appointment of Mouhamadou Diagne as Vice President of Integrity (INT) at the World Bank Group.

• Mouhamadou Diagne has a deep track record in protecting institutions against fraud and corruption and a strong leadership record in ensuring accountability, most recently at the Global Fund

Books and Authors

Union Culture Minister launches e-book “Prof. B.B. Lal: India Rediscovered”

• Union Culture Minister Prahlad Singh Patel launched an e-book titled “Prof. B.B. Lal: India Rediscovered”.E-book was launched on the occasion of centenary year of great archaeologist Professor B. B. Lal.

• E-book titled “Prof. B.B. Lal: India Rediscovered” has been prepared by the Ministry of culture along with Prof B BLal Centenary Celebration Committee.

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Important Current Affairs 2nd May 2020

National

Asian Paints to make hand sanitisers

•Asian Paints, India’s largest paint maker, announced on May 1, 2020 that it will start making hand and surface sanitisers under Viroprotek brand. The sanitizers will be made available in the market from next week onwards.

•The sanitisers will be manufactured at Asian Paints’ plant in Ankleshwar, Gujarat. The company stated that it has obtained all necessary permissions from authorities.

Acquisitions and Mergers

Reliance increases its stake to 26.3% in US-based tech company SkyTran

• Reliance Strategic Business Ventures Limited(RSBVL), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Limited(RIL), has increased its stake to 26.3% on a fully diluted basis in US-based SkyTran Incorporated(Inc), a venture-funded technology company which develops modern transport modes including personal rapid transit system.

• RIL has invested in SkyTran to play an active role in advancing solutions, especially in telecom, digital platforms and services, advanced materials, electric batteries and also to develop India’s first pod taxi prototype, a next-generation transportation system

Obituary

Veteran anti-apartheid activist Denis Goldberg passes away

• Veteran South African anti-apartheid activist Denis Goldberg passed away. He was the ally of late South African President Nelson Mandela. He played a key role in South African liberation struggle.

• He was the only white member of the African National Congress’s military wing, Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK).

Sports

FIFA launches #WeWillWin campaign to pay tribute to health workers

• Fédération International de Football Association(FIFA) has launched a campaign called “#WeWillWin”. Through this campaign FIFA tribute a special video to health workers and other professionals who ensure the society continues to function.

• Former India football captain Bhaichung Bhutia who is also featured among 50 past and present football stars.

Appointments and Resignations

Tarun Bajaj appointed as Economic Affairs Secretary

•Tarun Bajaj took charge as the new Economic Affairs Secretary on May 1, 2020. He has assumed charge at a time when the economy is under severe stress due to the ongoing situation.

•Tarun Bajaj is a 1988 batch IAS officer. He was previously serving as the Additional Secretary in Prime Minister's Office. He has succeeded Atanu Chakraborty, who retired on April 30, 2020.

Ajay Tirkey assumes charge as Secretary of WCD Ministry

•Ajay Tirkey has assumed charge as the Secretary in the Ministry of Women and Child Development. He is a 1987 batch IAS officer from Madhya Pradesh cadre.

•He succeeds Rabindra Panwar who retired on April 30, 2020. Ajay Tirkey was earlier serving as the Special Secretary and Additional Secretary in the Ministry.

Ranking

ICC Rankings: India lose top spot to Australia in test rankings

• India has lost its top spot to Australia in ICC test rankings on May 1 and has now dropped to third. The fall in the ranking was because India’s victory in 12 test matches and just one defeat in 2016-2017 was eliminated from the annual update.

• With Australia taking the top spot, India has slipped to the 3rd spot and New Zealand has gained 2nd position in the ICC test rankings.

Days

World Tuna Day

• World Tuna Day is observed globally on 2nd May every year. This day is established by the United Nations (UN) to raise awareness about the importance of tuna fish. It is observed for the first time in 2017.

• According to the UN, an outsized number of nations worldwide depend upon tuna for both food security and nutrition. At the same time, more than 96 countries have tuna fisheries, and their capacity is constantly growing.

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Important Current Affairs 1st May 2020

National

Chhattisgarh top state in providing employment to workers under MGNREGS

• Chhattisgarh has topped the list of states in providing employment to unskilled labourers under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).

• The data was released by the Union Rural Development Ministry. Chhattisgarh has provided employment to 18.51 lakh workers under MGNREGS.

• Rajasthan is on second while Uttar Pradesh is on the third.

MP govt launches ‘Jeevan Amrit Yojana’ to boost Immune system

• Madhya Pradesh government has launched ‘Jeevan Amrit Yojana’ to boost the immune system of people to fight disease.

• A target has been set to distribute this packet of 50 grams to 1 crore families of the state.

International

US to host world's largest maritime exercises this year

•The US Navy announced recently that it will host the world’s largest maritime exercises in Hawaii again this year. The drills will be held only at sea.

•The US Navy has hosted the Rim of the Pacific exercises in Hawaii every two years since the early 1970s.

•The military exercise is aimed at being a meaningful exercise with maximum training value and minimum risk to the force, allies and partners, and the people of Hawaii.

Banking and Economy

KVG bank launches “Vikas Abhaya” loan scheme

• Karnataka VikasGrameenaBank(KVGB) has launched ‘VikasAbhaya’ a loan scheme to provide some relief to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise(MSME) borrowers.

• This scheme is for those borrowers whose business activities are disrupted on account of the current situation in Dharwad, Karnataka.

Obituary

Legendary footballer Chuni Goswami passed away at 82

• Former India footballer Chuni Goswami passed away at the age of 82 years. Apart from playing football, he had also played first-class cricket for Bengal.

• He has captained the 1962 Asian Games gold-winning Indian football team. He played 50 matches for India as a footballer from 1956 to 1964.

Appointments and Resignations

Former Axis Bank CEO Shikha Sharma named advisor to Google Pay India

Former Axis Bank CEO, Shikha Sharma named advisor to Google Pay India. Google Pay is one of the leading apps on Unified Payments Payments Interface (UPI), battling with the likes of Amazon Pay, Paytm, etc.

Ranking

India ranks 53rd in budget transparency, accountability: IBP survey

• International Budget Partnership (IBP) has provided a transparency score of 49 out of 100 to India’s Union budget process. The provided score to India is higher than the global average score of 45.

• New Zealand has topped the chart. It has a score of 87 out of 100.

Karnataka tops in total installed renewable capacity:  CRISIL

• According to a CRISIL Research report, Karnataka retained its 1st position in terms of total installed renewable capacity in FY20 followed by Tamil Nadu(2nd) & Gujarat(3rd).

• The top 3 states in overall solar energy capacity addition are Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka & in wind energy- Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.

• Karnataka’s total renewable energy installed capacity stood at 15,232 MegaWatt(MW) as on March 31, 2020, against 13,845 MW as on March 31, 2019. It has the highest installed capacity for solar at 7,278 MW, up from 6,096 MW a year ago. Its wind energy capacity is at 4,791 MW.

Days

Ayushman Bharat Diwas is celebrated on 30 April.

• The day aims to promote affordable medical facilities in remote areas of the country based on the Socio-Economic Caste Census database.

• It will also promote health and wellness and provide insurance benefits to the poor.

• Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB PMJAY), also known as the National Health Protection Mission (AB-NHPM), was launched by PM Narendra Modi on 14 April 2018, at Bijapur, Chhattisgarh.

International Workers’ Day

• The International Workers’ Day is held annually on May 1 worldwide to honour the contributions of the labourers or working class people.

• This day is also known as Workers’ Day, Labour Day as well as May Day in some of the countries.

• India celebrated the first Labour day in the year 1923 and the day is referred nationally as Antarrashtriya Shramik Diwas or Kamgar Din.

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Important Current Affairs 29th April 2020

National

SC rules adoption of ‘one nation, one ration card’ scheme

• Supreme Court recently directed the central government to adopt the ‘one nation, one ration card’ scheme. The scheme will benefit the stranded migrant workers who cannot get basic amenities and also help EWS section to get subsidised food.

• The scheme was expected to be launched in June 2020..

UIDAI permits Aadhaar updation facility through CSC

•The Unique Identification Authority of India has decided to make Aadhaarupdation facility available through Common Service Centre (CSCs). The decision has been taken to make the Aadhaar updation process easier for citizens.

•The Common Service Centre are designated banking correspondents of banks. Over 20,000 CSCs will now be able to offer this service to the citizens.

•The CSC Village Level Entrepreneurs have also been urged to start the Aadhaar work with responsibility, as per instructions issued by UIDAI in this regard.

Airtel partners with Nokia to enhance network capacity

• Nokia and BhartiAirtelhas signed a deal of about $1 billion in order to enhance the network capacity of BhartiAirtel.

• A multi-year agreement has been signed by the two companies to deploy Nokia’s SRAN solution across nine circles in India.

• This $1 billion deal aims to improve customer experience of BhartiAirtel’s customers by providing them best-in-class connectivity.

Maruti Suzuki partners with AgVA Healthcare to make 10,000 ventilators per month

Automobile giant Maruti Suzuki has developed low-cost ventilators for helping the government. The production is going on in Gautam Buddha Nagar of Uttar Pradesh, where the company is supporting a start-up Agva Healthcare to scale-up ventilator production.

Banking and Economy

ADB approves USD 1.5 bn loan to India

•The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on April 28, 2020 approved USD 1.5 billion loan to India.

•The loan has been sanctioned to support immediate priorities such as containment, prevention and social protection of the poor and economically vulnerable sections, especially and disadvantaged groups.

•The fund is part of a larger package of support that ADB will provide in close coordination with the government and other development partners.

Axis Bank to pick about 30 per cent stake in Max Life Insurance for Rs 1,600 crore

• Axis Bank would acquire a 29% additional stake in Max Life Insurance for an estimated price of Rs 1,592 crore. The deal will increase the Axis Bank‘s stake in Max Life to 30%. Max Financial Services will hold the remaining 70% in the joint venture.

• The acquisition may be completed in 6-9 months & Post the deal, Max Financial Services and Axis Bank will get to nominate four and three directors respectively on the Max Life board. The total premium generated from both companies exceeded Rs 38,000 crore.

CRISIL cuts India’s GDP growth forecast for FY21 to 1.8%

• Rating agency CRISIL has cut the GDP growth rate forecast for India for 2020-21 (FY21) to 1.8% from the previous prediction of 3.5%.

• CRISIL has projected a total losses of Rs 10 lakh crore or Rs 7,000 per person.

Science and Technology

Everest sized Asteroid 1998 OR2 to fly-by Earth Today

• According to the details shared by NASA's Center for Near-Earth Object Studies, an Everest sized Asteroid 1998 OR2 will fly-by Earth today i.e. on 29th April 2020.

• NASA and other researchers have ruled out any potential threat to the planet due to the asteroid.

Obituary

Former Liverpool player Michael Robinson passes away

• Former Liverpool striker, Michael Robinson passed away. He was born on July 12, 1958, in Leicester, England. He has featured in more than 300 official matches in England for five clubs, including Liverpool.

• Robinson was part of the Liverpool squad that captured the league, League Cup and European Cup treble in 1984.

Appointments and Resignations

Shiv Das Meena becomes new CMD of HUDCO

Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, additional secretary, Shiv Das Meena has been appointed as chairman and managing director of Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) for a period of six months with immediate effect.

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Important Current Affairs 28th April 2020

National

Madhya Pradesh govt launches Jivan Shakti Yojana for women

• Madhya Pradesh government has launched the “Jivan Shakti Yojana” for women and aims at providing home-based employment for women.

• Under this scheme, women entrepreneurs of urban areas in MP can start the construction of masks by registering themselves on a portal.

JioMart becomes live of WhatsApp

• Following the Facebook-Jio deal, Reliance Industries has now launched its e-commerce platform Jiomart on WhatsApp for retail of grocery items. The JioMart WhatsApp number is 8850008000.

• In order to place order through JioMart, customers need to add this number on their phones. As of now, the JioMart services will be available only in suburban areas of Mumbai

• JioMart, introduced in January 2020, is an Online-to-Offline (O2O) e-Commerce platform of Reliance that deals retail of groceries through local Kirana stores. JioMart is a joint venture between Reliance  Retail and Reliance Jio Platforms.

Banking and Economy

RBI announces Rs 50,000 crore special liquidity support to mutual funds

• The Reserve Bank of India recently allocated Rs 50000 crore funds as a special liquidity facility for mutual funds to ease of the liquidity strains. The closure of some debt Mutual Funds has intensified the liquidity pressure on mutual funds.

• Banks can use the funds available under the SLF-MF for meeting the liquidity requirements of MFs by:

 extending loans, and

 undertaking outright purchase of and/or repos against the collateral of

o investment-grade corporate bonds,

o commercial papers (CPs),

o debentures and

o certificates of Deposit (CDs) held by MFs.

Ind-Ra cuts India's FY21 GDP growth further to 1.9%, lowest in 29 yrs

• India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) has predicted India’s GDP growth rate for 2020-21 (FY21) at 1.9%. Earlier this was 3.6%.

• According to Ind-Ra, India’s GDP growth rate has been in contraction (means negative) for 5 times. These 5 years are-> in 1957-58 was negative 0.4%, in 1965-66 it was negative 2.6%, in 1966-67 it was negative 0.1%, in 1972-73 it was negative 0.6%, and in 1979-80 it was negative 5.2%.

Science and Technology

NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope Completes 30 Years in Orbit

• The Hubble Space Telescope, built by the United States space agency NASA with contributions from the European Space Agency (ESA), has completed 30th year in orbit on 25 April 2020.

• The Hubble Space Telescope was deployed on 25 April 1990.

• This space telescope was named after American astronomer Edwin P Hubble, who confirmed that our universe was constantly expanding.

Ranking

India third-largest military spender after US, China in 2019: SIPRI report

•India has become the third-largest military spender in the world after the United States and China, as per Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) report. India and China were for the first time among the top three military spenders.

•India’s military spending grew by 6.8 percent to $71.1 billion in 2019, as per the SIPRO report on “Trends in World Military Expenditure, 2019”. This was the highest expenditure on the military in South Asia.

•The total global military expenditure rose to $1,917 billion in 2019, an increase of 3.6 percent from 2018, the largest annual growth since 2010. The five largest military spenders, including Russia and Saudi Arabia, accounted for 62 percent of the global military expenditure in 2019.

Days

World Day For Safety And Health At Work

• Every year the International Labour Organization (ILO) celebrates the World Day for Safety and Health at Work on 28 April to promote the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases globally, and raise awareness to ensure health and safety at workplace.

Workers’ Memorial Day

• The Workers’ Memorial Day, also known as International Commemoration Day for Dead and Injured Workers occurs every year on 28 April.

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