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Important Current Affairs 6th June 2020

National

India to donate USD 15 million for Global Vaccine Alliance

• India has pledged to make donation of USD 15 million for GAVI - Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation. The donation was made during the virtual Global Vaccine Summit that was hosted by United Kingdom (UK).

• Prime Minister Modi attended the meeting and mentioned that the huge demand for the vaccine in India will make it cheaper.

Ayush Ministry launches 'My Life, My Yoga' international competition

• The Ministry of Ayush launched the My Life, My Yoga international video-blogging competition on June 5, 2020. The competition invites participation from people across the globe.

• The participants have been asked to post a 3-minute video on their social media accounts by tagging the Ministry of Ayush to participate in the competition.

• The participants can also use the hashtag “My Life, My Yoga” in the comment section on the social media platforms while sharing their video blogs. The winners will be awarded Rs 1 lakh cash prize.

Important Cabinet Approvals

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi held meeting. Following are the major approvals given during the meet:

• Renaming of Kolkata Port as Syama Prasad Mookerjee Port. The Kolkata Port is the first Major Port as well as the only riverine port of the country.

• Re-establish Pharmacopoeia Commission for Indian Medicine & Homoeopathy (PCIM&H) as Subordinate Office under Ministry of AYUSH by merging into it Pharmacopoeia Laboratory for Indian Medicine (PLIM) and Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia Laboratory (HPL)- the two central laboratories established at Ghaziabad since 1975.

• Setting up of an “Empowered Group of Secretaries (EGoS) and Project Development Cells (PDCs) in Ministries/Departments of Government of India for attracting investments in India”. This new mechanism will reinforce India’s vision of becoming a US$ 5 trillion economy by 2024-25.

• Signing the Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of the Republic of India and the Royal Government of Bhutan on Cooperation in the areas of Environment.

Banking and Economy

RBI creates Payment Infrastructure Development Fund

• The Reserve Bank of India created Payment Infrastructure Development Fund of Rs 500 crores. The apex bank has made an initial contribution of Rs 250 crores towards the funds. The rest of the fund is to come through the card issuing banks.

• The fund has been created to increase point of sale infrastructure and other digital payment infrastructure in the country.

• The funds are being allocated in line with the measures proposed in the vision document on payment and settlement systems in India 2019-21.

• The funds are to be governed through an advisory council. However, the funds will be administered and managed by RBI.

IndusInd Bank Launches India’s First Mobile-based current account opening facility

• IndusInd is the first bank in India to introduce this assisted mobile application based facility which will enable the Bank to open current accounts for self-employed individuals and businesses digitally, in just a few hours.

• The IndusInd app uses multiple ‘Application Programme Interface’ (APIs) and enables secured validation of KYC documents from authorised government platforms such as the Goods and Service Tax (GST), Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA), National Securities Depository Limited (NSDL), Import Export Code (IEC) and Aadhaar.

Axis Bank MasterCard and World line launches ‘Soft POS’, first financial payments service

• Axis Bank Ltd, Mastercard India & World line India partnered to launch a digital point-of-sale(POS) solution ‘Soft POS’, the 1st financial payments service in India to transform everyday smartphones into merchant POS terminals.

• Soft POS provides a cost-effective card acceptance solution for all micro-merchants and SMEs in India by eliminating the need to invest in a POS device. The app allows banks to have complete visibility of a merchant’s transactions, which makes it easier for small merchants to get business loans.

• It helps offline merchants and Kirana stores accept payments using their smartphones.Merchants can accept contactless payments directly by their own Android smartphones, this functionality is called “Tap on Phone” which means a cardholder can tap his/her contactless card on the merchant Smartphone with NFC functionality and so encourages social distancing.

• The solution enables merchants to accept payments through various digital form factors which include Bharat QR, sending payment links to customers and accepting Near Field Communication(NFC) based technology payments to boost contactless payments in the country.

Acquisitions and Mergers

Jio-Mubadala deal for 1.85% Stake in Jio Platforms

• Abu Dhabi-based firm, Mubadala Investment Company has recently invested into Reliance Jio Platforms to acquire 1.85 percent stake in the company. Under this deal, Mubadala will be investing Rs 9,093.60 crore into Jio Platforms., the telecom branch of Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Limited (RIL).

• The Jio-Mubadala deal awaits regulatory and customary approvals. It is the sixth such deal in last 1.5 months. The other five deals were carried out with Facebook, Silver Lake, General Atlantic, Vista Equity Partners and KKR.

Appointments and Resignations

Brajendra Navnit becomes India’s new ambassador to WTO

• India has appointed Brajendra Navnit as India’s new ambassador to the World Trade Organization (WTO). He is a 1999 batch IAS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre. He will be posted at the Permanent Mission of India (PMI) to the WTO in Geneva.

• Navnit, who recently completed his tenure as Joint Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office. He replaces JS Deepak at the PMI, whose two-year extended term ended on May 31.

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Important Current Affairs 5th June 2020

National

Union Cabinet clears ordinance to create ‘One India, One Agriculture Market’

• The union cabinet chaired by PM Narendra Modi has approved an ordinance on June 3, 2020, that will pave the way for the creation of ‘One India, One Agriculture Market’.

• The ordinance aims at setting up an ecosystem where farmers and traders will have the freedom of choice of sale and purchase of the agricultural produce.

• The Cabinet decision was announced by Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar.

GoI launches “The Urban Learning Internship Program (TULIP)”

• Government of India has launched “The Urban Learning Internship Program (TULIP)”. This programme is an initiative of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), Ministry of HRD, and Ministry of Housing and Urban Development.

• TULIP programme aims to provide internship opportunities to fresh graduates in all Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) as well as Smart Cities across the nation.

• The programme would also facilitate practical experience to the students of India and hence help in infusing fresh ideas and innovative thinking into the working of Urban Local Bodies and smart cities.

India- Australia Virtual Meet

• Prime Minister Narendra Modi on June 4 held the first-ever ‘India-Australia’ virtual summit with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. The Australian PM was earlier scheduled to visit India this year.

• The ‘bilateral virtual summit’ signifies the strengthening of India’s ties with Australia as both the countries also signed 7 agreements on defence, public reforms, and critical technology.

International

World food price index hits 17-month low in May 2020: UN

•  The United Nations food agency announced on June 4, 2020 that the world food prices fell for the fourth consecutive month in May 2020, hitting a 17-month low.

•  The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) food price index averaged 162.5 points in May, the lowest monthly reading since December 2018. The index measures monthly changes in the prices of cereals, dairy products, oilseeds, meat and sugar.

•  The dairy price index also dropped by 7.3%, led by sharp falls in prices of butter and cheese, partly because of lower import demand.

•  The cereal price index also fell by 1% as coarse grain prices continued to fall with US maize prices falling and wheat export prices falling, amid expectations of ample global supplies. However, international rice prices have edged higher during this period. Rice production reached an all-time high of 508.7 million tonnes in 2020, up by 1.6% from 2019.

•  The meat index also slipped 0.8%, as poultry and pig meat prices continued to fall, reflecting high export availabilities and despite an increase in import demand in East Asia.

Obituary

Legendary Filmmaker Basu Chatterjee passes away

• Legendary Filmmaker & the National Film Award winner Basu Chatterjee passed away. He was known for his middle-of-the-road cinema and films like “Chhoti Si Baat” and “Rajnigandha”. He also directed two hit TV serials namely “Byomkesh Bakshi” and “Rajani”.

• He received National Film Award for Best Film on Family Welfare for his film Durga in 1992.

Renowned lyricist Anwar Sagar passes away

• Veteran lyricist and member of Indian Performing Right Society Limited (IPRS), Anwar Sagar passed away.

• The lyricist also has to his credit films like Khiladi, Yaarana, Salaami, Aa Gale Lag Jaa and Vijaypath among more.

Appointments and Resignations

Uday Kotak takes over as President of CII

• MD & CEO, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Uday Kotak has taken over as the President of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) for the year 2020-21.

• He has replaced the chairman and MD of Kirloskar Systems, Vikram Kirloskar as the President of CII.

Days

World Environment Day 2020: Global CO2 emissions hit record high in May

• The World Environment Day 2020 was observed across the globe on June 5, 2020 with an emphasis on the need to care for nature and humanity. World Environment Day is observed every year to raise global awareness on environmental issues.

• This year’s theme of Environment Day is ‘Biodiversity’. The World Environment Day 2020 theme is extremely important, especially with the recent events of major bushfires in Australia, Brazil and the United States.

• The day provides an opportunity to broaden the “basis for an enlightened opinion and responsible conduct by individuals, enterprises, and communities in preserving and enhancing the environment.”

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Important Current Affairs 4th June 2020

National

Government launches Electronics Manufacturing Scheme 2.0 (Outlay- Rs 50,000 Crore)

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has launched the Electronics Manufacturing Scheme 2.0 with an outlay of Rs. 50,000 crore (approximately USD 7 billion). It includes three sub-schemes.

• The PLI (Production Linked Incentive)Scheme shall extend an incentive of 4% to 6% on incremental sales (over base year) of goods manufactured in India and covered under the target segments, to eligible companies, for a period of five years subsequent to the base year.

• Scheme for Promotion of Manufacturing of Electronic Components and Semiconductors (SPECS) andThe SPECS(Scheme for Promotion of Manufacturing of Electronic Components and Semiconductors)shall provide financial incentive of 25% on capital expenditure for the identified list of electronic goods, i.e., electronic components, semiconductor/ display fabrication units, Assembly, Test, Marking and Packaging (ATMP) units, specialized sub-assemblies and capital goods for manufacture of aforesaid goods.

• The EMC 2.0 (Modified Electronics Manufacturing Clusters) shall provide support for creation of world class infrastructure along with common facilities and amenities, including Ready Built Factory (RBF) sheds / Plug and Play facilities for attracting major global electronics manufacturers, along with their supply chains.

International

US President Trump invites PM Modi for G7 meet

• US President Donald Trump has invited PM Narendra Modi for the G7 meeting during telephonic conversation held between both the leaders on June 2, 2020.

• PM Modi and President Trump discussed the issue of C-19 , G-7 meeting, Indo-China border and others. The G7 meeting has been rescheduled to September 2020.

India to be re-elected as non-permanent member of UNSC

• India to be soon re-elected as a UNSC non-permanent member. The United Nations Security Council will hold its elections in June 2020 and India is highly expected to win the elections from the Asia Pacific seat.

• India is the sole contender from this region and its name was proposed by all the Asia Pacific member countries.

Banking and Economy

Facebook to acquire 9.9% stake in Jio Platforms via Jaadhu Holdings

• Facebook will acquire this stake in Jio Platforms via a new entity named Jaadhu Holdings LLC. According to a submission made to the Competition Commission of India, Jaadhu Holdings, LLC is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Facebook, Inc.

• Jaadhu is a newly incorporated company formed in March 2020 under the laws of the State of Delaware, US. Jaadhu is not engaged in any business in India or anywhere in the world.

Obituary

NBA Hall Of Famer Wes Unseld Passes Away At 74

• NBA legend Wes Unseld, one of the greatest American professional basketball player,  has passed away at the age of 74.

• Unseld is universally considered as the greatest player in league’s history.

• He led his franchise ‘Washington Wizards’ (the then Baltimore Bullets) to the NBA Championship in 1978.

Appointments and Resignations

Gaitri Kumar appointed India’s next High Commissioner to UK

• Gaitri Kumar has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to the United Kingdom.

• She is presently serving as the Ambassador of India to the Kingdom of Belgium, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the European Union.

Ex Google CFO Patrick Pichette Appointed as new Chairman of Twitter’s Board

• Twitter Inc has appointed Patrick Pichette, a former chief financial officer (CFO) at Google, as the new chairman of the company’s board.

• It is the first time in Twitter’s history that an outsider will preside over the group. Pichette will replace Omid Kordestani.

Sibi George appointed India’s next Ambassador to Kuwait

• Sibi George has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to the State of Kuwait.

• He was presently serving as the Ambassador of India to Switzerland.

V N Datt takes over as C&MD, National Fertilizers Limited

•  Virendra Nath Datt has taken over as the Chairman and Managing Director of National Fertilizers Limited (NFL). Datt has been serving as the Director (Marketing) of the Company since October 2018.

•  As Director (Marketing) at NFL, Datt is credited with sustained growth in fertilizer sale of the company from 43 Lakh MT in 2017-18 to 57 Lakh MT in 2019-20.

Raveesh Kumar becomes new Ambassador of India to Finland

• Raveesh Kumar has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Finland. He is presently serving as the Joint Secretary in the Ministry.

• He is an IFS officer of 1995 batch.

Days

International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression

• International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression is observed globally on 4th June every year. This day affirms the UN’s commitment to guard the rights of children.

•  This day is to acknowledge the pain suffered by children throughout the planet who are the victims of physical, mental and emotional abuse. The main aim of celebrating today is to spread the notice about the pain and sufferings faced by the victims as children.

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Important Current Affairs 3rd June 2020

National

PM SVANIDHI Scheme launched to help street vendors with affordable loans

• The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has launched PM SVANIDHI (Pradhan Mantri Street Vendor’s Atmanirbhar Nidhi) scheme, which is a special micro-credit facility scheme for providing affordable loan to street vendors, to help them to resume their livelihoods.

• The scheme is as per the announcement by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on May 14 under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat economic package.

• The scheme is valid until March 2022 and will provide total liquidity of Rs 5,000 crore. SIDBI will be the technical partner for implementation of the scheme.

Cyclone Nisarga heads towards coast in Maharashtra, Gujarat

• As per the information shared by the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), a deep depression is likely to intensify into cyclonic formation in next 12 hours in the east-central Arabian sea.

• The Tropical cyclone ‘Nisarga’ is heading towards the coast in Gujarat and Maharashtra. It is expected to hit the coast of Mumbai on June 3.

International

WHO launches ‘C-TAP’ for equitable access to life-saving tech

• WHO has launched the ‘C-19 Technology Access Pool’ for equitable access to life-saving tech. This comes after at least 37 countries jointly appealed to the World Health Organisation for common ownership of vaccines, medicines and other diagnostic tools to combat the global health crisis.

• C-TAP aims to accelerate the development of vaccines and medicines through the sharing of research and information and to increase manufacturing capacity for any products that are developed. WHO has also issued a ‘Solidarity Call to Action’ urging other stakeholders of the UN health agency to join the cause.

Sports

36th National Games postponed indefinitely

• The 36th National Games, which were scheduled to be held between October and November in Goa, have now been postponed indefinitely.

• The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) had recently asked the Goa government to host the National Games as scheduled from October 20- November 4, 2020. However, the National Games organising committee decided to postpone the games.

• The National Games organising committee will be hosting a meeting in September, following which the new dates for National Games will be decided. The previous edition of the Games was held back in 2011 in Jharkhand.

Virat Kohli only cricketer in Forbes’ 2020 list of world’s highest paid athletes

• India skipper Virat Kohli is the only cricketer to feature in Forbes’ list of the top 100 highest-paid athletes in the world for the year 2020. Kohli is ranked at number 66 with estimated earnings of $26 million.

• Swiss tennis great, Roger Federer has topped the list of world’s highest-paid athlete for 2020 with an estimated $106.3 million.

Appointments and Resignations

Pradip Kumar becomes new Secretary in Ministry of Steel

J&K cadre IAS, Pradip Kumar Tripathi, has taken over as Secretary, Ministry of Steel, Govt. of India. Prior to this, Shri Tripathi has been posted as Special Secretary and Establishment Officer in Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

Ranking

Amazon tops Brand Finance Global 500 2020 report; Tata Group top Indian brand

• Brand Finance has released its annual Brand Value Report 5000 for the year 2020.

• It is for the third consecutive year that Amazon has retained the title of the world’s most valuable brand having brand valuation of $220,791 million. It is also made history by becoming the first brand in Brand Finance Global 500 to exceed US$200 billion value mark.

• Google has jumped one place up to come second in the list at $159,722 million. In 2019 it was at 3rd spot. Apple ($140,524M), Microsoft ($117,072M) and Samsung Group ($94,494M) makes top 5 brand in the list.

• Among Indian companies, Tata Group has once again retained its position as top Indian brand. It is the only Indian brand to feature in top 100.

India Drops 6 Places to be Ranked 23rd in Startup Blink’s Startup Ecosystem Rankings 2020

• Startup Blink has launched the Startup Ecosystem Rankings Report 2020 that ranks 1,000 cities and 100 countries worldwide, based on their startup ecosystem strength and activity level. Startup Blink is global startup ecosystem map and research center.

• India has dropped 6 places to be ranked at 23rd spot in the latest ranking, with a score of 5.698. Last year it was placed at 17th spot.

• United States has topped the ranking list with a score of 123.167.

Days

World Bicycle Day

• Every year the International World Bicycle Day is observed on 3rd June to recognise the uniqueness, longevity and versatility of the Bicycle as a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transport.

• The day was declared by the United Nations General Assembly in April 2018.

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Important Current Affairs 2nd June 2020

National

Government launches Mudra Shishu loan

• The Central Government has announced the launch of ‘Mudra Shishu loan’ for small businesses and industries. The scheme would benefit around one lakh companies to avail of the loan with an interest benefit of 2% in a year.

• Earlier, the scheme was announced by Finance Minister NirmalaSitharaman under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat package.

Cabinet revises Definition of MSME

• The Union Cabinet has approved the revised definition of the MSME on June 1, 2020. As per the new Definition of MSME, the investment of up to Rs 50 crore and a turnover of Rs 250 crore will now define a company as a Medium Unit.

• The new and old definition of MSME is mentioned below:

Category New Capital New Turnover Old Capital Old Turnover

Micro 1 Crore 5 Crore 25 Lakh 10 Lakh

Small 10 Crore 50 Crore 5 Crore 2 Crore

Medium 50 Crore 250 Crore 10 crore 5 Crore

• The turnover with respect to exports will not be counted in the limits of turnover for any category of MSME units whether micro, small or medium. This will help in attracting investments and creating more jobs in the MSME sector.

• Earlier, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced few economic measures under the Rs 20 lakh crore Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan to revive the economy of India.

DRDO develops ‘Ultra Swachh’ to disinfect PPEs, electronics items, fabrics

• The Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) has developed a disinfection unit called ‘Ultra Swachh’ to disinfect a wide range of materials including Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), electronics items, fabrics and others.

• The technology has been developed by a Delhi-based laboratory of DRDO, Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences along with industry partner Gel Craft Health care Private Ltd. The ‘ultra swachh’ uses an advanced oxidative process comprising of multiple barrier disruption approach using Ozonated Space Technology for disinfection.

Banking and Economy

Moody’s downgrades India’s sovereign rating to ‘Baa3’, maintains negative outlook, revises GDP for FY21 to -4%

• Moody’s Investors Service has downgraded India’s sovereign rating one notch to the lowest investment grade (Baa3) from ”Baa2”, with negative outlook.

• ”Baa3” is the lowest investment grade, just a notch above junk status.

• Moody’s has also revised its FY21 GDP estimate for India to 4% contraction against 0% growth projected earlier. However, the economic growth is projected to pick up at 8.7% in FY22 and 6% in FY23.

Obituary

Former Olympic sprint champion Bobby Morrow passes away

• American sprinter, Bobby Joe Morrow passed away. He won three athletics gold medals at the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games. He won the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay in Melbourne, becoming the first man only after fellow American Jesse Owens (1936) to win sprint treble.

• He was named Sports Illustrated’s “Sportsman of the Year” in 1956 and set 11 ratified world records during his career.

Days

World Milk Day

• The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations celebrates World Milk Day every year on 01st June to recognize the importance of milk as a global food, and to celebrate the dairy sector.

• The World Milk Day 2020 is the 20th anniversary of World Milk Day. This year, the day was celebrated with a “Enjoy Dairy Rally” that commenced on 29th May 2020 and culminated with World Milk Day i.e. on 01st June 2020.

• The theme of World Milk Day 2020 is “20th Anniversary of World Milk Day”.

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Important Current Affairs 1st June 2020

National

Ravi Shankar Prasad launches India’s National AI Portal www.ai.gov.in

• The Union Minister for Electronics and IT, Law and Justice and Communications Ravi Shankar Prasad launched India’s national Artificial Intelligence Portal called www.ai.gov.in, on 30 May 2020, to mark the the first anniversary of the second tenure of the government

• The portal has been jointly developed by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and IT Industry. It will be jointly run by National e-Governance Division of Ministry of Electronics and IT and NASSCOM from the IT industry.

• The minister also launched a National Program for the youth, “Responsible AI for Youth”, to give the young students of our country a platform and empower them with appropriate new age tech mind-set, relevant AI skill-sets and access to required AI tool-sets to make them digitally ready for the future.

Banking and Economy

Yes Bank acquires 24.19% stake in Dish TV via pledged shares

• Private sector lender YES Bank has acquired 24.19 percent stake in Dish TV India Ltd, making it the second-largest shareholder in the direct-to-home (DTH) company.

• Yes Bank Ltd has acquired the stakes by invoking pledges against 44.53 equity shares kept as collateral with the private lender for a loan.

Science and Technology

Astronomers confirm the existence of Earth Size Planet at Proxima Centauri

• The researchers found that the Earth-like planet Proxima b is 1.17 times the mass of the Earth which is smaller than the older estimate of 1.3 times. The planet orbits its star in just 11.2 days.

• With the use of state-of-the-art astronomical instruments, it has been informed that Earth-like planet has been orbiting the closest star to our solar system, Proxima Centauri.

NASA Astronauts enters International Space Station in SpaceX’s Crew Dragon

• The SpaceX astronaut mission completed its first journey as the astronauts in the Crew Dragon Capsule entered the International Space Station (ISS) on May 31. Elon Musk’s SpaceX company built the Dragon module that lifted from Florida spaceport on May 30, 2020.

• The spacecraft successfully docked with the orbiting laboratory at 10.16 am ET. Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley then disembarked Crew Dragon and joined the three crew currently onboard the International Space Station which was launched in 1998 and inhabited in 2000.

Obituary

Wajid Khan of Sajid-Wajid Music Composer Duo passes away

• Singer & music composer Wajid Khan passed away. The singer was renowned for his partnership with his brother Sajid and the duo was known as Sajid-Wajid.

• They made their Bollywood debut in 1998 with movie Pyaar Kiya Toh Darna Kya and went on to work in various films such as Garv, TereNaam, Tumko Na Bhool Payenge, Partner and various others.

Sports

Rohit Sharma nominated for Rajiv Gandhi KhelRatna Award 2020

• Rohit Sharma has been nominated by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award 2020. Among other nominations, the BCCI nominated Shikhar Dhawan, Deepti Sharma and Ishant Sharma for Arjuna Awards.

• The Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports had sought invitations for the awards from the board. The period of consideration for the nominations is from January 1, 2016- December 31, 2019.

Appointments and Resignations

Power Finance Corporation board Appoints R S Dhillon as CMD

• State-run Power Finance Corporation (PFC) has appointed Ravinder Singh Dhillon as the new Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of the company.

• He will succeed incumbent CMD Rajeev Sharma, who is attaining superannuation on May 31, 2020.

• Dhillon’s appointment will be with effect from 01 June 2020, till the date of his superannuation (May 31, 2023) or until further orders.

Arun Singhal Appointed CEO of Food Regulator FSSAI

• Senior bureaucrat Arun Singhal has been appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of India’s apex food regulator Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). He will succeed GSG Ayyangar.

• The FSSAI comes under the purview of the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare. It is responsible for setting up standards for the food industry and regulate the manufacturing, storage, distribution, sale, and import of foods.

Anita Kotwani becomes Chief Executive Officer of Carat India

• Anita Kotwani has been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer of Carat India, a media agency owned by Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN).

• She was earlier serving as the senior vice president, new business and client lead, for The Walt Disney business at Mindshare India.

Days

Global Day of Parents

• The United Nations has proclaimed to observe June 1 ever year as the Global Day of Parents to appreciate all parents in all parts of the world for their selfless commitment to children and their lifelong sacrifice towards nurturing this relationship.

• The theme for Global Day of Parents 2020 is “Appreciate all parents throughout the world”.

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Important Current Affairs 31st May 2020

National

MP govt starts ‘RozgarSetu’ scheme for skilled workers

• Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has launched a scheme ‘RozgarSetu’ for skilled workers who have returned from other states.

• As per the state government, Madhya Pradesh is the first to devise such a work plan, to provide work to the maximum number of returned skilled workers.

• The State government will act as a setu [bridge] between workers and employers so that both are benefited.

• The scheme will provide a platform to the workers and connect them with those needing them, thus fulfilling the manpower requirement of industries as well as provide employment to workers.

International

US joins G7 Group’s Partnership on Artificial Intelligence to counter China

• United States has finally joined the rest of the G7 countries in the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (AI), in an effort to contain China‘s influence on AI.

• The Trump administration had been the only nation among leaders of the Group of Seven which was not the part of the Global Partnership on AI, set up by France and Canada in 2019.

• The Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence aims to guide the responsible adoption of AI based on shared principles of “human rights, inclusion, diversity, innovation and economic growth”, among the member nations.

• G7 Members: France, Canada, Italy, Germany, Japan, UK and US.

Obituary

RajyaSabha member M.P. Veerendra Kumar passes away

• Rajya Sabha (RS) MP from Kerala and Loktantrik Janata Dal (LJD) Leader, writer and journalist,  M.P. Veerendra Kumar passed away. He was born on July 22, 1936, at Kalpetta, Wayanad district, Kerala.

• In 1996, Kumar was elected to the Lok Sabha from Kozhikde and became a ‘Union Minister of State for Finance’ and later ‘Union Minister of State for Labour’ in the United Front governments led by HD Deve Gowda and IK Gujral.

• He was elected to the Lok Sabha again in 2004. He has been a member of the Rajya Sabha since April 2016. He was a recipient of the Sahitya Academy award.

Days

World No-Tobacco Day

• World No Tobacco Day (WNTD) is observed every year on 31 May, globally to inform the public on the dangers of using tobacco  and to discourage the use of tobacco in any form.

• Theme of the 2020 WNTD is ‘Tobacco and related industry tactics to attract younger generations’.

• The Day was created by the member states of the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1987.

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Important Current Affairs 30th May 2020

National

India’s GDP growth slows to 11-year low of 4.2%

• India’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 4.2 per cent in 2019-20 as compared to 6.1 per cent expansion in 2018-19, the slowest growth in GDP in 11 years. The earlier estimate by various arms of the government was 5 per cent growth in ‘19-20.

• The government imposed  on March 25. However, slowing down of business activities across the world in January-March impacted the Indian economy.

• The Reserve Bank had pegged the GDP growth for 2019-20 at 5 per cent as projected by the NSO in its first and second advance estimates released earlier this year in January and February respectively.

Foundation Stone for Missile Park ‘Agneeprastha’ Laid at INS Kalinga, Visakhapatnam

• The foundation stone for setting up a Missile Park named ‘Agneeprastha’ was laid at INS Kalinga, Naval base in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, by Commodore Rajesh Debnath, Commanding Officer Eastern Naval Command (ENC), on 28 May 2020.

• Once completed, the Missile Park will be dedicated to all the officers, sailors and support staff of the INS Kalinga, who have served in this premier naval base of the ENC since its establishment in 1981..

• ‘AGNEEPRASTHA’ will have glimpses of Missile History of INS Kalinga since 1981 till date.A 2 megawatt solar photovoltaic plant was also commissioned at INS Kalinga by Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain.

Boycott Chinese products, apps, including TikTok: Sonam Wangchuk

• Educator and innovator Sonam Wangchuk has created a buzz online after his message to boycott Chinese goods went going viral amid the escalating tension at LAC in Ladakh. In an appeal, he urged the countrymen to snub products made in China and uninstall Chinese apps.

• Wangchuk, who inspired Phunsukh Wangdu’s character essayed by Aamir Khan in the film 3 Idiots, recently released a YouTube video titled ‘China Ko Jawaab Sena Degi Bullet Se, Naagrik Dengey Wallet Se‘, explaining how people can help the country in this situation.

International

US President Trump regulates social media platforms under Section 230

• US President Donald Trump recently signed an order to regulate the social media platforms under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA). The move is aimed at defending free speech in the states.

• The order came after Twitter labeled Trump's tweets as misleading. Section 230 is the Internet legislation of the US that paved the way of social media giants like Google, Facebook and Twitter.

Trump says US terminating relationship with World Health Organisation

• Accusing the World Health Organisation (WHO) of being “totally controlled” by China, US President Donald Trump late Friday announced the country will permanently “terminate” its relationship with the organisation and will redirect funds from the WHO to other organisations.

• The Trump administration had on Wednesday taken the significant step of saying it could no longer certify Hong Kong’s autonomy from China, which was promised before the British handed the city back in 1997.

Obituary

Ajit Jogi, the First Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh Passes Away

• Ajit Jogi, who served as the first Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh, has passed away. He was 74. Ajit Jogi had served as the first CM of the state from November 2000 to November 2003.

• He parted ways with the Congress in 2016 and went on to form the Janata Congress Chhattisgarh (J).Before taking over as the CM, Ajit Jogi served as a Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament (MP) from Madhya Pradesh.

Renowned Astrologer Bejan Daruwala passes away

• Renowned astrologer Bejan Daruwala passed away on May 29, 2020 in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. He was 88.

• Bejan Daruwalla was a world renowned Indian astrologer, who also served as an English professor in Ahmedabad. He was known to be an ardent follower of Lord Ganesha.

• His astrological techniques combined palmistry, western astrology, astrology, tarot reading, the Kabalah and I-Ching.

Appointments and Resignations

NDB elects Brazil’s Marcos Troyjo as its new President

• Marcos Troyjo has been elected as the new president of the New Development Bank (NDB). He is a former deputy economy minister of Brazil and will replace India’s KV Kamath as a president of the multilateral financial institution.

• The Finance Ministry released a statement mentioning that the elections for the post were held in a special meeting of the bank’s board of governors on May 27. The statement also mentioned that India’s Anil Kishora will be the bank’s vice-president and Chief Risk Officer.

Aiman Ezzat becomes new CEO of Capgemini Group

• Aiman Ezzat has become the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of French technology major Capgemini Group.

• He has replaced the presently serving Paul Hermelin who will continue to serve as the Chairman of the Board.

• The appointment of Aiman Ezzat was made at the close of the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders.

Leo Puri to become Chairman of JP Morgan South Asia and South East Asia

• Leo Puri has been announced to become the new Chairman of JP Morgan South Asia and South East Asia. He will replace Kalpana Morparia who will be serving as the chairman until the 1st Quarter of 2021.

• Leo Puri has earlier served as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of UTI Mutual Fund.

Wipro appoints Thierry Delaporte as its new CEO & MD

• Thierry Delaporte has been appointed by the IT major Wipro as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Managing Director (MD). He will replace Abidali Neemuch wala as the new CEO and MD of Wipro.

• Abidali Neemuchwala will relinquish his position as CEO and MD on 1st June 2020.

Days

International Everest Day

• International Everest Day is observed on 29 May every year.

• It was on this day in 1953 that Nepalese Tenzing Norgay and New Zealand’s Edmund Hillary had climbed the Mt. Everest, becoming the first humans to achieve the feat.

• The International Everest Day is held since 2008, when the legendary climber Hillary passed away.

World Digestive Health Day

• The American College of Gastroenterology is honored to join the World Gastroenterology Organisation in observing World Digestive Health Day on Friday, May 29, 2020.

• On World Digestive Health Day, ACG joins WGO in its objective to raise global awareness of the gut microbiome.

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Important Current Affairs 29th May 2020

National

NPCI Launches AI virtual assistant ‘PAi’ to create product awareness

• The National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) has launched an artificial intelligence (AI) based chatbot called PAi, to create awareness around its products like FASTag, RuPay, UPI, AePS on a real time basis.

• PAi is developed by Bengaluru based startup CoRover Private Limited. The AI virtual assistant, PAi will be available round the clock to provide accurate information on NPCI products.

FM Nirmala Sitharaman chairs 22nd Meeting of FSDC

• The 22nd Meeting of the Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) was chaired by the Union Minister for Finance & Corporate Affairs Nirmala Sitharaman in New Delhi.

• The FSDC meeting featured the participation of senior officers of the Government of India as well Financial Sector Regulators. The participants of the meeting reviewed the measures taken by the Government of India and the regulators in the recent months to maintain the financial stability

International

European Union announces Euros 750 billion recovery fund

• European Union (EU) Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni recently announced that the EU has proposed a recovery fund of 750 billion euros to revive the economy of member countries.

• The proposal came as the 27-nation group has gone into deep recession, which is ravaging the economies of the nations worldwide.

Banking and Economy

ADB approves USD 177 mn loan for road projects in Maharashtra

• The Asian Development Bank on May 27, 2020 approved a USD 177 million loans for road projects in Maharashtra. The projects aim to improve connectivity to national highways, interstate roads, seaports, airports, district headquarters, rail hubs, enterprise clusters, industrial areas and agricultural areas.

• Under the project, around 450 km of state highways and major district roads will be upgraded in Maharashtra.

Science and Technology

NASA postpones its long-awaited launch of American Astronauts to ISS due to bad weather

• The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) postponed the scheduled launch of American Astronauts to the International Space Station from American soil on May 27, 2020 due to bad weather. NASA called off its most-awaited mission minutes before the launch.

• This will be the first launch of astronauts from American soil since 2011. Large crowds had gathered along Florida's Space Coast to watch the historic moment. The launch is a joint operation between NASA and SpaceX.

Sports

36th National Games postponed indefinitely

The 36th National Games, planned for October-November in Goa, was deferred indefinitely. The National Games organising board has chosen to defer National Games.

Days

World Hunger Day

• World Hunger Day is observed globally on 28 May every year. The objective of this day is to raise awareness about more than 820 million people living in chronic hunger worldwide.

• It is observed since 2011 to not only spread awareness about the malaise of chronic hunger but also to solve hunger and poverty through sustainable undertakings.

• The Hunger Project is US based organization committed to the sustainable end of world hunger.

International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers

• The International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers is observed on May 29 annually to pay tribute to all the men and women who have served and continue to serve in United Nations peacekeeping operations for their high level of professionalism, dedication, and courage and to honor the memory of those who have lost their lives in the cause of peace.

• The day was designated by United Nations General Assembly on December 11, 2002 and first celebrated in 2003.The 2020 Theme: Women in Peacekeeping: A Key to Peace.

World Digestive Health Day

• Every year, the World Digestive Health Day (WDHD) is observed on 29 May. It is organised by the World Gastroenterology Organisation (WGO) in collaboration with the WGO Foundation (WGOF).

• The theme of WDHD 2020 is Gut Microbiome – A Global Perspective

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Important Current Affairs 28th May 2020

International

Facebook Launches its Audio-only Calling App ‘CatchUp’

• The internal R&D group of Facebook, the NPE (New Product Experimentation) Team, has come up with a calling application called Catch-Up.

• This audio-only unique app has been developed to coordinate call timings with friends and family members and enables to set up group calls with up to 8 people. The CatchUp app has currently been launched in the United States for testing purpose.

• CatchUp won’t need a Facebook account to use the service and the app works with your phone’s contacts list. Through this app, user will get to know who all in their contact list are free to talk, and which contact is offline.

Banking and Economy

Fitch forecasts India’s GDP growth rate to contract 5% in FY21

• American credit rating agency Fitch ratings has drastically projects India’s economic growth forecast to contract 5 percent in the current fiscal year 2020-21 due to a prolonged .

• This means India’s GDP is estimated to be -5% in FY21.Earlier it had predicted the same at 0.8%

S&P forecasts Indian economy to contract 5% in FY21

S&P Global Ratings has slashed India’s GDP growth rate to 5% in the Fiscal Year 2021. The reduction in the growth rates has been made due to slump in the economic activities in the whole country amid  imposed.

SBI Research Downgrades India’s GDP at -6.8% for FY21

• SBI Research has slashed India’s economic growth forecast in the current fiscal year 2020-21 to contract to 6.8 percent from earlier 4.7 percent.

• This means, as per SBI Research Report, India’s GDP is estimated at -6.8% in FY21.

Science and Technology

NASA renamed its telescope after ‘Mother of Hubble’ Nancy Grace Roman

• US Space agency NASA has announced to name its next-generation space telescop, the Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST), currently under development, in honor of Nancy Grace Roman, NASA’s first chief astronomer, who paved the way for space telescopes focused on the broader universe.

• The WFIRST Telescope will now be called Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope (or Roman Space Telescope, for short). It is set to be launched in the mid-2020s.It will be the successor to NASA’s Hubble and Webb Telescopes.

Obituary

Padma Shri awardee, Urdu Writer Mujtaba Hussain passes away

• Noted Urdu author, humorist and satirist Mujtaba Hussain passed away. He was born on July 15, 1936, in Hyderabad, Telangana. Hussain was described as the Mark Twain of Urdu.

• He began his literary career from “Siasat”, a leading Urdu daily published from Hyderabad.

Ranking

AarogyaSetu becomes world's largest contact tracing app

• Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan said on May 27, 2020 that India’s AarogyaSetu has become the world's largest contact tracing app, reaching over 11 crore 40 lakh people in just 40 days.

• The Minister tweeted saying that the application is a classic example of coordination between government, industry and citizens. The app was recently made an open source.

• The Health Minister stated that the iOS version of the open source app will be released in the next two weeks. He further added saying that the use of the app is continuously increasing and a large number of people are benefiting from it.

Books and Authors

JK Rowling to release her latest book “The Ickabog”

• The “Harry Potter” author, JK Rowling will release her latest book, “The Ickabog”, online for free, for the children during this  period. The Ickabog’ is a story about truth and the abuse of power.

• Rowling has pledged to donate all royalties when the book is published to “groups who’ve been particularly impacted.”

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