DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS: April 28 & 29, 2020
Daily Current Affairs (April 28 & 29, 2020) like many other sections is inevitable and this also helps to score in the Banking awareness, Static GK and Financial Awareness sections. Remember, Banking Awareness and Static Awareness Questions are asked from the General Awareness section. This will also help you to ride your preparations for the forthcoming exams.
World Day for Safety and Health at Work-28 April:
- In 2003, ILO began to observe World Day to stress the prevention of accidents and diseases at work, capitalizing on the ILO’s traditional strengths of tripartism and social dialogue. 28 April- International Commemoration Day for Dead & Injured Workers.
- Theme- “Stop the pandemic: Safety & health at work can save lives”
Narendra Singh Tomar issued guidelines for SVAMITVA scheme and SOP for e-Gram Swaraj:
- Minister of Rural Development & Panchayati Raj, Narendra Singh Tomar issued guideline of the SVAMITVA Scheme aimed at providing people residing in Rural parts with the right to document their residential properties & SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) regarding the e-Gram Swaraj Yojana.
Thuthukudi airport in Tamilnadu upgraded to level 3:
- The Thuthukudi airport in Tamil Nadu, near the strategically important Bay of Bengal coast, has been upgraded to level 3 by the Airport Authority of India. This signifies a rise in the operational potentials of the airport and increases the scope of getting more funds for expansion activities.
- The airport run way is at present being extended to 3115 metres to enable bigger planes to use it. Plans are also in the pipeline for starting hopping flights to nearby destinations like Trivandrum, Kochi, Madurai etc.
Australia cancels premier multilateral air combat training exercise Pitch Black 2020:
- Australia has informed India that their premier multilateral air combat training exercise Pitch Black 2020 scheduled from July 27 to August 14 has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 situation. The next edition of Pitch Black is scheduled in 2022.
- IAF for the 1st-time deployed fighter aircraft in 2018 edition.
UK unveils 100% state-backed ‘Bounce Back Loan Scheme’ for small businesses:
- UK has unveiled a 100 per cent state-backed ‘Bounce Back Loan Scheme’ for the small businesses to help them tide through the coronavirus pandemic lockdown.
- Qualifying small businesses can apply online to borrow 2,000- 50,000 pounds as interest-free loans.
Pak Navy successfully test-fires anti-ship missiles in North Arabian Sea:
- The Pakistani Navy has successfully test-fired a series of anti-ship missiles in the North Arabian Sea from surface ships, fixed and rotary wing aircraft. The announcement was made by Pakistan Navy spokesperson Rear Admiral Arshid Javed and didn’t reveal the details of the drill.
- Capital– Islamabad
- Currency– Pakistani rupee
- Prime minister– Imran Khan
- President– Arif Alvi
Banking and Financial
UNCTAD predicts $3.4 trillion debt for developing countries amid Covid-19:
- Developing countries’ repayments on their public external debt alone will soar to between $2.6 & $3.4 tn in 2020 & 2021, the UNCTAD has said in a new report while calling for a global debt deal to prevent COVID-19 pandemic from spreading economic disaster.
- Headquarters- Geneva, Switzerland.
RBI announces Rs 50,000-crore Special Liquidity Facility for mutual funds:
- RBI decided to open a special liquidity facility of Rs 50,000 Cr for mutual funds to ease liquidity pressure on mutual funds. Under the SLF-MF, RBI shall conduct repo operations of 90 days tenor at fixed repo rate. The scheme is available from April 27.
SIDBI launches special liquidity scheme for MSMEs:
- Small Industries Development Bank of India launched a special liquidity scheme for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises through banks including Small Finance Banks, Non-Banking Financial Companies including fintech NBFCs and Microfinance Institutions.
- Tenor of these loans will be 90 days.
Ind-Ra cuts India’s FY21 GDP growth further to 1.9%, lowest in 29 years:
- India Ratings has further slashed its growth expectations for the economy to 1.9% for the ongoing fiscal, down from 3.6% in March. This will be the lowest GDP growth in the last 29 years and assumes that the partial lockdown will continue till mid-May.
Science and Technology
KGMU becomes 1st govt hospital in country to launch plasma therapy for COVID-19:
- A 58-year-old doctor became the first coronavirus patient in Uttar Pradesh to receive plasma therapy as an experimental treatment for the disease at the King George Medical University (KGMU) Lucknow. It is an experimental procedure for COVID-19 patients.
- Patient was administered 200 ml plasma.
USGS releases first complete geologic map of the Moon:
- The USGS (United States Geological Survey) has released the first complete geologic map of the Moon, providing a truly comprehensive look at our nearest cosmic neighbour.
- The team created the map using a mix of Apollo-era maps.
LIGO detects first merger of two unequal-mass black holes:
- For the 1st time since it started functioning, the gravitational wave observatories at LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Laboratory) scientific collaboration have detected merger of 2 unequal-mass black holes which are 2.4 bn light years away.
- The black holes were 20 and 40 times the mass of the sun.
RBI extends Madhavan Menon’s term as part-time Chairman of CSB Bank:
- CSB Bank said the Reserve Bank of India has extended the term of appointment of Madhavan Menon as the part-time Chairman of the Bank till July 21, 2020. Extension is in terms of Section 10B (1A) (i) of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949.
Catholic Syrian Bank (CSB):
- MD and CEO: Rajendran Chinna Veerappan.
US President Donald Trump nominates Indian American as US envoy to OECD:
- US President Donald Trump has nominated senior Indian American diplomat Manisha Singh as America’s next envoy to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.
- She is currently Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs.
- Headquarters: Paris, France.
India is world’s 3rd largest military spender; expense rose by 6.8% in 2019:
- The US, China and India were the world’s three biggest military spenders in 2019, followed by Russia and Saudi Arabia. The two Asian countries made it to the top three for the first time, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) .
- Total global spending rose to almost $2 trillion in 2019.
Former Governor, Veteran Congress Leader Devanand Konwar Passes Away in Guwahati:
- Former Governor of Bihar and Tripura and veteran Congress leader Devanand Konwar died of old age ailments at his Guwahati residence. He was 86.
- He had also served as governor (additional charge) of West Bengal from December 2009 to January 2010.
Veteran photojournalist Ronny Roy passes away:
- Veteran sports photojournalist Ronojoy ‘Ronny’ Roy passes away following a cardiac arrest.
- Popularly known as ‘Ronny’, he was associated withBengali daily Aajkaal since 1990s and covered the ICC WorldCup in England last year.
Ex-NASA administrator James Beggs passes away:
- Former NASA administrator James M. Beggs, passed away. He led the agency during the early years of the space shuttle program and resigned after the Challenger disaster killed seven astronauts in 1986.
Middle distance runner Khatun handed 4-year ban for dope flunk:
- Middle distance runner Jhuma Khatun has been banned for four years by the Athletics Integrity Unit of the world governing body for testing positive for a banned substance- steroid- in a nearly two-year-old doping case which the NDTL (National Dope Testing Laboratory) had failed to detect.
International Dance Day-29 April:
- International Dance Day was created on 1982 by the Dance Committee of the International Theatre Institute- the main partner for the performing arts of UNESCO. This is a celebration day for those who can see the value & importance of the art form dance.
Assam govt announced Rs.50 lakh insurance cover to journalists:
- Assam State government has announced an insurance cover of Rs.50 lakh for the frontline journalists who have been bravely covering COVID-19 against all odds, risking their lives.
- The announcement was passed by Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal.
- Capital: Dispur
- Chief Minister: SarbanandaSonowal
- Governor: Jagdish Mukhi
Gujarat govt launches unique initiative ‘Umbare Aanganwadi’ to help children during lockdown:
- Gujarat state Government has launched an unique initiative called Umbare Aanganwadi (means doorstep Aanganwadi) under ICDS (Integrated Child Development Services) programme to reach out to children during the lockdown.
- Under this initiative, the state will offer ready to eat nutritious food packets through AMUL (an Indian dairy cooperative society) to children between 3-6 years of age.
- Chief Minister:Vijay Rupani
- Governor:Acharya Devvrat
Neyveli Lignite Corporation commences coal production at Talabira-II & III Opencast Coal Mine:
- NLC India has commenced coal production at its Talabira-II and III Opencast Coal Mine in Odisha. The Talabira II and III coal mines were allotted to this Navratna firm in 2016 to meet the requirement of its existing and future coal-fired power plants.
- NLC achieved renewable energy capacity of 1404 MW in 2019-20.
- Chief Minister:Edappadi K. Palaniswami
- Governor:Banwarilal Purohit
Andhra Pradesh launches pharmacy app for surveillance on cold, fever patients:
- Concerned over steady rise in Coronavirus positive cases, Andhra Pradesh Government began tracking patients who could be suffering from cold and fever.
- It has launched a customised mobile application- ‘Covid Pharma’ for pharmacies across the state.
- Capital: Amaravati
- Chief Minister: Y. S. Jaganmohan Reddy
- Governor: Biswa Bhushan Harichandan
Andhra Pradesh CM launched Jagananna Vidya Deevena Scheme:
- Andhra Pradesh Cheif Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy launched the Jagananna Vidya Deevena scheme, to provide 100% fee reimbursement to all students. The reimbursed amount will directly be credited into the accounts of the mothers of the students in four instalments annually.
- Cheif Minister also announced a helpline number, 1902.
- ITI Students: Rs.10,000
- Polytechnic students: Rs.15,000
- Degree students: Rs.20,000
Mazumdar-Shaw recognised among world’s top 20 inspirational leaders in Biopharma:
- Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Biocon Chairperson has been recognized as one of the world’s top 20 inspirational leaders in biopharmaceuticals in The Medicine Maker ‘Power List 2020’ for her contribution to the world of medicine as an innovative business leader.
EAM Jaishankar to participate in BRICS Foreign Ministers meeting on response to COVID-19 pandemic:
- The foreign ministers of the BRICS grouping discussed measures to combat COVID-19. External Affairs Minister Shri S Jaishankar represented India at the meet. The video conference was hosted by Russia as it is the current rotating head.
- BRICS countries are Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
Banking and Financial
Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation region to post 2.7% economic contraction in 2020:
- APEC region is expected to post a 2.7% economic contraction in 2020 due to the impact of the novel coronavirus, the most significant fall since the near-zero growth rate logged in 2009 during the global financial crisis, according to the APEC Secretariat.
- Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum has 21 members.
India’s holding of US govt securities hits record high of $177.5 bn in Feb:
- India’s holding of US government securities jumped by over $13 billion in a month to record high of $177.5 billion at the end of February. In the last one year since February 2019, the overall holding of India has jumped by a staggering USD 33.2 billion.
ADB approves 1.5 billion USD for India to fight COVID-19:
- Asian Development Bank unveiled a $1.5 billion Covid-19 package for India and is in discussions with the government on further aid for specific sectors. Earlier this month, the World Bank had provided a $1 billion package for the healthcare sector.
Asian Development Bank:
- Chairperson– Hong Nam-Ki
- Vice Chairpersons– Sri Mulyani Indrawati & Pierre Gramegna
- Headquarters–Manila, Philippines
- Opened on– 19th December 1966
Axis Bank to buy 29% stake in Max Life Insurance for Rs 1,600 crore:
- Axis Bank will acquire an additional 29% stake in Max Life Insurance for an estimated price of Rs 1,592 crore, raising its total holding in the life insurer to 30% after the completion of the deal. Max Financial Services will hold the remaining 70% in JV.
- Axis is looking to purchase around 556 million shares of Max.
Science and Technology
IIT-Bhubaneswar develops multi-surface sanitizer to disinfect devices:
- IIT-Bhubaneswar has designed multi-surface sanitizer using UV light for the disinfection of devices in the combat against COVID-19.
- When the infected object was placed into the chamber, it gets exposed to UV light & will be disinfected within 15 minutes.
- It was developed based on the results available for SARS CoV-1.
Durgapur-based CSIR lab develops Robotic device “HCARD”:
- HCARD (Hospital Care Assistive Robotic Device) is developed by Durgapur-based CSIR lab, Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute. It will help frontline healthcare workers in maintaining physical distance from those infected by coronavirus.
Bureaucratic reshuffle in govt, Tarun Bajaj appointed DEA Secretary:
- Rural Development Secretary Rajesh Bhushan has been appointed as the Officer on Special Duty (OSD) in the Health and Family Welfare Department in the rank of secretary.
- Nagendra Nath Sinha will be the new Secretary of Rural Development Department in place of Bhushan.
- Information and Broadcasting Secretary Ravi Mittal has been moved out as Secretary, Department of Sports.
Justice Dipankar Datta sworn in as Chief Justice of Bombay High Court:
- A senior judge of the Calcutta High Court (HC) Justice Dipankar Datta was sworn-in as the new Chief Justice of Bombay HC on 28 April. The oath of office was administered by Governor of Maharashtra Bhagat Singh Koshyari at Raj Bhavan.
- Justice Dipankar Datta will replace Justice Bhushan Pradyumna Dharmadhikari whose term as Chief Justice ended on 27 April 2020.
Bollywood actor Irrfan Khan dies at 54:
- Bollywood actor Irrfan Khan passed away at the age of 54 years. He went on to deliver memorable performances in films such as The Life of Pi, Slumdog Millionaire, The Mighty Heart and Jurassic World. His last film was Angrezi Medium.
- He had won IIFA and Filmfare Award multiple times.
Former Liverpool striker Michael Robinson passed away at 61:
- The former Brighton & Liverpool striker Michael Robinson, who finished his career at Osasuna, has died aged 61. Robinson was part of the Liverpool squad who won a league, League Cup & European Cup treble in 1984. He won 24 Republic of Ireland caps.
Pakistan’s Umar Akmal gets three-year ban for match-fixing approach:
- Controversial Pakistani batsman Umar Akmal was banned from all forms of cricket for 3 years after pleading guilty to failing to report match-fixing approaches.
- The batsman’s ban is effective from February 20, when he was provisionally suspended by Pakistan Cricket Board.
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