Current Affairs 2020

Ariel Space Mission adopted by the European Space Agency [15 Nov 2020]

The European Space Agency (ESA) has formally adopted Ariel, the explorer that will study the nature, formation and evolution of exoplanets. As of now the existence of more than 4,000 exoplanets is considered confirmed, while there are thousands of other candidate exoplanets that need further observations to say for certain if they are exoplanets. Proxima Centauri b is the closest exoplanet to Earth and is four light-years away and inhabits the “habitable zone” of its star, which means that it could possibly have liquid water on its surface.

Lewis Hamilton’s road to his seventh title [15 Nov 2020]

Britain’s Lewis Hamilton took a record-equalling seventh world championship and became Formula One’s most successful driver of all time after winning a wet and slippery Turkish Grand Prix.

Fifteen Asian countries sign world’s biggest trade deal [15 Nov 2020]

Asia Pacific nations including China, Japan and South Korea on Sunday signed the world’s largest regional free-trade agreement, encompassing nearly a third of the world’s population and gross domestic product. Top officials from 15 nations that also include Australia, New Zealand and the 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations inked the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, or RCEP - nearly a decade in the making -on the final day of the 37th Asean Summit hosted virtually by Vietnam.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he pulled out over concerns about how RCEP would affect the livelihoods of Indians, particularly the most vulnerable. India, though, will be allowed to rejoin the trade pact.

Vaishno Devi Shrine Board wins Centre’s water conservation award [12 Nov 2020]

Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board has bagged the first prize for water conservation management in the category of best institution, resident welfare association and religious organisation for successful campus usage, from the Union Ministry of Jal Shakti. The award was announced during the two-day 2nd National Water Award-2019 ceremony.

20th Summit of SCO Council of Heads of State [10 Nov 2020]

20th Summit of SCO Council of Heads of State was held on November 10, 2020 (in Video Conference Format). The Meeting was chaired by the President of the Russian Federation Mr. Vladimir Putin. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi led the Indian delegation. Other SCO Member States were represented by their Presidents, while India and Pakistan were represented at the level of Prime Minister. Other participants were: Secretary General of the SCO Secretariat, Executive Director of the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure, the Presidents of the four Observers (Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran, Mongolia) of the SCO. This was the first SCO Summit held in Virtual Format and third meeting that India participated after becoming a full member in 2017.

14th Foundation Day Celebrations at NIPER-Hyderabad [10 Nov 2020]

National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, Hyderabad celebrated its 14th Foundation Day in a befitting manner. On this occasion, Shri V. K. Saraswat, Padma Bhushan, Member, NITI Aayog, Chancellor, JNU & Former DG, DRDO attended as the chief-guest.

Mumbai Indians won thirteenth edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) [10 Nov 2020]

Defending champions Mumbai Indians thrashed Delhi Capitals by five wickets to retain their title and win the tournament for a record five times. No other team has won IPL more than thrice. This event was held in Dubai.

Malayalam author S Hareesh wins the JCB Prize for Literature 2020 [08 Nov 2020]

The winner of the JCB Prize for Literature 2020 has been announced. And this year S Hareesh has won for his novel, Moustache which been translated into English by Jayasree Kalathil and published by HarperCollins India. The winner was announced by Lord Bamford, Chairman, in a virtual awards ceremony. The book was chosen among the five books in the shortlist which consisted of Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara, Chosen Spirits by Samit Basu, Prelude to a Riot by Annie Zaidi and These, Our Bodies, Possessed by Light by Dharini Bhaskar.The JCB Prize for Literature is regarded as the richest literary prize in India. As per the norm, the Malayalam author will receive a ?25 lakh cash prize and the translator will receive an additional ?10 lakh.

ISRO launches latest earth observation satellite EOS-01, 9 others lifts off [07 Nov 2020]

India successfully launched its latest earth observation satellite EOS-01 and nine customer satellites on board its Polar rocket from the spaceport. The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C49) lifted off from the first launch pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre.

CCI approves acquisition of General Insurance Business of Bharti AXA by ICICI Lombard [02 Nov 2020]

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) approves acquisition of General Insurance Business of Bharti AXA General Insurance Company Limited (Bharti AXA) by ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company Limited (ICICI Lombard) under Section 31(1) of the Competition Act, 2002. ICICI Lombard is a general insurance company registered with the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) and is engaged in providing a comprehensive and well-diversified range of general insurance products, including motor, health, fire, personal accident, marine, engineering and liability insurance, through multiple distribution channels. Bharti AXA is a general insurance company registered with the IRDAI and is a joint venture held by Bharti General Ventures Private Limited (51%) and Societe Beaujon (49%). It is engaged in providing general insurance products, including motor, health, travel, crop and home insurance to its customers.

PM to release commemorative coin of Rs 75 denomination to mark the 75th Anniversary of FAO [16 Oct 2020]

On the occasion of 75th Anniversary of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on 16th October 2020, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi release a commemorative coin of Rs 75 denomination to mark the long-standing relation of India with FAO. Prime Minister will also dedicate to the Nation 17 recently developed biofortified varieties of 8 crops. The journey of FAO in making the vulnerable classes and masses stronger, economically and nutritionally, has been unparalleled. India has had a historic association with FAO. Indian Civil Service Officer Dr. Binay Ranjan Sen was the Director General of FAO during 1956-1967. The World Food Programme, which has won the Nobel Peace Prize 2020, was established during his time. India’s proposals for the International Year of Pulses in 2016 and the International Year of Millets 2023 have also been endorsed by FAO.

Cabinet approves Rs. 5718 crore World Bank aided project STARS [14 Oct 2020]

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister,  has approved Implementation of the Strengthening Teaching-Learning and Results for States (STARS) project with a total project cost of Rs 5718 crore with the financial support of World Bank amounting to US $ 500 million (approximately Rs. 3700 crore). STARS project would be implemented as a new Centrally Sponsored Scheme under Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of Education(MOE). Setting up and support to the National Assessment Centre, PARAKH as an independent and autonomous institution under Department of School Education and Literacy, MOE.

Atal Innovation Mission collaborates with CGI to promote Innovation across schools [13 Oct 2020]

Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog, has signed a Statement of Intent (SOI) with CGI India in order to further rev up the innovation across the schools. As part of continuous support to AIM’s one of its kind Atal Tinkering Lab initiative, AIM and CGI India which is one among the largest IT and business consulting services firms has collaborated for creating a successful and innovative workforce from the ATL schools. AIM is the flagship programme of the Government of India that promotes a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship across country. Its ATLs are accessed by over 2.5 million school kids in India. ATL is a dedicated innovation workspace set-up at schools where students get access to do-it-yourself (DIY) kits and learn to tinker and create innovative solutions using the latest technologies.

India and ADB Sign $300 Million Loan to Develop Rajasthan’s Secondary Towns [12 Oct 2020]

The Government of India and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) today signed a $300 million loan to finance inclusive and sustainable water supply and sanitation infrastructure and services in 14 secondary towns of the state of Rajasthan. The signatories to the Rajasthan Secondary Towns Development Sector Project were Shri Sameer Kumar Khare, Additional Secretary (Fund Bank and ADB), Department of Economic Affairs in the Ministry of Finance who signed for the Government of India, and Mr. Takeo Konishi, Country Director of ADB’s India Resident Mission, who signed for ADB.

ADB, India sign $270 million loan to improve urban services in 64 Madhya Pradesh small cities [12 Oct 2020]

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India today signed a $270 million loan to develop water supply and integrated storm water and sewage management infrastructure and strengthen capacities of urban local bodies (ULBs) for improved service delivery in the state of Madhya Pradesh. This is an additional financing to scale up the scope of the ongoing Madhya Pradesh Urban Services Improvement Project, which was approved in 2017 with a $275 million loan. It will expand the outcome of the current project by covering additional 64 small cities benefiting 185,000 households consisting of about 1.3 million people.

PM releases Special Commemorative Coin of Rs 100 denomination [11 Oct 2020]

Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi released commemorative coin of Rs. 100 denomination to celebrate the Birth Centenary of Rajmata Vijaya Raje Scindia through video conference. 

Territorial Army Troops celebrate 72nd Raising Day [09 Oct 2020]

Territorial Army (TA) since inception on 09 October 1948, as "Citizens Army", has come a long way and played a major role in assisting Regular Army as Second line of defence in times of war, by guarding Vantage Areas including Critical Ammunition installations. The TA soldier has always been recognised as multi-skilled and talented candidate, and his contribution has increased manifold over the years. TA has participated in all Wars since independence, later many TA Air Defence and Artillery were converted into Regular Army Units owing to their battle skills.

The Nobel Peace Prize 2020 [09 Oct 2020]

The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize for 2020 to the World Food Programme (WFP). The World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization addressing hunger and promoting food security. In 2019, the WFP provided assistance to close to 100 million people in 88 countries who are victims of acute food insecurity and hunger.

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2020 [08 Oct 2020]

The Nobel Prize in Literature for 2020 is awarded to the American poet Louise Glück “for her unmistakable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal”. Louise Glück made her debut in 1968 with Firstborn, and was soon acclaimed as one of the most prominent poets in American contemporary literature.

TCS surpasses Accenture in m-cap to become world's most-valuable IT company [08 Oct 2020]

India's largest software exporter Tata Consultancy Services became the most-valuable information technology (IT) company globally as it surpassed rival Accenture for the first time in terms of market capitalisation.

Cabinet approves ‘Natural Gas Marketing Reforms’ [07 Oct 2020]

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved ‘Natural Gas Marketing Reforms’, taking another significant step to move towards gas based economy. The objective of the policy is to prescribe standard procedure to discover market price of gas to be sold in the market by gas producers, through a transparent and competitive process, permit Affiliates to participate in bidding process for sale of gas and allow marketing freedom to certain Field Development Plans (FDPs) where Production Sharing Contracts already provide pricing freedom. The policy aims to provide standard procedure for sale of natural gas in a transparent and competitive manner to discover market price by issuing guidelines for sale by contractor through e-bidding. This will bring uniformity in the bidding process across the various contractual regimes and policies to avoid ambiguity and contribute towards ease of doing business. The policy has also permitted Affiliate companies to participate in the bidding process in view of the open, transparent and electronic bidding. This will facilitate and promote more competition in marketing of gas. However, rebidding will have to be done in case only affiliates participate, and there are no other bidders. The policy will also grant marketing freedom to the Field Development Plans (FDPs) of those Blocks in which Production Sharing Contracts already provide pricing freedom.

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2020 [07 Oct 2020]

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Physics 2020 with one half to Roger Penrose(Affiliation at the time of the award: University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom ) “for the discovery that black hole formation is a robust prediction of the general theory of relativity" and and the other half jointly to Reinhard Genzel(Affiliation at the time of the award: University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA, Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, Garching, Germany) and Andrea Ghez(Affiliation at the time of the award: University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA) "for the discovery of a supermassive compact object at the centre of our galaxy".

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry [07 Oct 2020]

The 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry is awarded to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna “for the development of a method for genome editing”. Since Charpentier and Doudna discovered the CRISPR/Cas9 genetic scissors in 2012 their use has exploded. The genetic scissors have taken the life sciences into a new epoch and, in many ways, are bringing the greatest benefit to humankind. This technology has had a revolutionary impact on the life sciences, is contributing to new cancer therapies and may make the dream of curing inherited diseases come true.

Govt appoints M Rajeshwar Rao as new deputy governor of RBI [07 Oct 2020]

The Govt appointed M Rajeshwar Rao as the new deputy governor of the Reserve Bank of India. He is currently an executive director at the banking regulator. The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet approved the appointment as the search for the incumbent was on since August.

Bhimaraya Metri takes charge as a director of IIM Nagpur [07 Oct 2020]

Dr Bhimaraya Metri has taken over charge as a director at the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Nagpur. Dr Metri has taken over from L S Murty, who was the director of IIM Nagpur from 2017 to 2020. Prior to joining IIM Nagpur, Dr Metri served as the director of IIM Trichy, following stints at the L&T Institute of Project Management Vadodara, MDI Gurgaon, IMI New Delhi, and BITS Pilani.

Dinesh Kumar Khara Appointed New SBI Chairman [07 Oct 2020]

The government appointed senior banker Dinesh Kumar Khara as chairman of the State Bank Of India. He replaces Rajnish Kumar, who completed his three-year term. The Banks Board Bureau (BBB) had recommended Khara as the next chairman of SBI.

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2020 [06 Oct 2020]

The 2020 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine is awarded jointly to Harvey J. Alter, Michael Houghton and Charles M. Rice “for the discovery of Hepatitis C virus”. They have made a decisive contribution to the fight against blood-borne hepatitis, a major global health problem that causes cirrhosis and liver cancer in people around the world. The Nobel Laureates’ discovery of Hepatitis C virus is a landmark achievement in the ongoing battle against viral diseases.

Prime Minister dedicates to the Nation the Atal Tunnel [03 Oct 2020]

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi dedicated to the nation the World’s longest Highway tunnel – Atal Tunnel at its south portal in Manali. The 9.02 Km long tunnel connects Manali to Lahaul-Spiti valley throughout the year. Earlier the valley was cut off for about 6 months each year owing to heavy snowfall. The Tunnel is built with ultra-modern specifications in the Pir Panjal range of Himalayas at an altitude of 3000 Mtrs (10,000 Feet) from the Mean Sea Level (MSL). The tunnel reduces the road distance by 46 Kms between Manali and Leh and the time by about 4 to 5 hours. It has state of the art electromechanical systems including semi transverse ventilation, SCADA controlled fire fighting, illumination and monitoring systems. The Tunnel has ample safety features built into it.

Military Nursing Service (MNS) has celebrated its 95th Raising Day [01 Oct 2020]

Military Nursing Service is the only all women corps in the Armed Forces. It came into being on March 28, 1888 with the arrival of first batch of 10 qualified British Nurses in Bombay, to organize nursing in Military hospitals in India. In 1893 it was designated as Indian Army Nursing Service(IANS) and in 1902 as Queen Alexandra Military Nursing Service (QAMNS). In 1914 for the first time Nurses were enrolled in India and were attached to QAMNS. On October 01,1926, a permanent Nursing Service for the Indian troops was formed and was designated as the Indian Military Nursing Service (IMNS). The IMNS made humble beginning and their work was universally acclaimed. On September 15, 1943, the IMNS officers became a part of the Indian Army and the members of service became Commissioned Officers.

BrahMos Missile Featuring Indigenous Booster Successfully Flight Tested [30 Sep 2020]

BrahMos surface-to-surface supersonic cruise missile featuring indigenous Booster and Airframe Section along with many other ‘Made in India’ sub-systems was successfully flight tested for designated range at 1030 hours today on September 30, 2020 from ITR, Balasore in Odisha. It is one more major step in enhancing the indigenous content. The BrahMos Land-Attack Cruise Missile (LACM) was cruising at a top speed of Mach 2.8. The successful launch has paved the way for the serial production of the indigenous booster and other indigenous components of the powerful BrahMos Weapon System realising Atmanirbhar Bharat pledge.

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World Health Organization (WHO)

Founded on: 7 April 1948. Head Quarter: Geneva, Switzerland Director-General: Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Member Country: 194 WHO began when our Constitution came into force on 7 April 1948 – a date we now celebrate every year as World Health Day. We are now more than 7000 people from more than 1 →

What is Bitcoin?

In 2009, an unknown programmer by the name of Satoshi Nakamoto put forward a whitepaper that proposed a creation of new form of digital currency - cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency functions the same way as regular currencies do in that its used as a means of exchange, unit of account and a store of va →

Medical Council of India (MCI)

Headquarter: New Delhi Function of the Organization: The Medical Council of India was established in 1934 under the Indian Medical Council Act, 1933, now repealed, with the main function of establishing uniform standards of higher qualifications in medicine and recognition of medical qualifications →

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