Daily Current Affairs : January 1 & 2, 2020

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Daily Current Affairs (January 1 & 2, 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.

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National News

Govt unveils Rs 102 lakh crore 5 year plan for mega infrastructure push

  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has unveiled infrastructure projects worth 102 lakh crore rupees that will be implemented in the next five years as a part of the government’s spending push to the infrastructure sector.
  • The Finance Minister informed this yesterday while releasing the Report of the Task Force on National Infrastructure Pipeline, NIP for 2019-2025.
  • Ms Sitharaman said that in his Independence Day speech the Prime Minister spoke about investing 100 lakh crore rupees in infrastructure.

India to launch Chandrayaan-3 this year says Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh

  • Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office Dr Jitendra Singh has said that India will launch Chandrayaan-3 in 2020.
  • Briefing reporters in New Delhi yesterday, Dr Singh asserted that the mission cost will be less than Chandrayaan-2.
  • Chandrayaan-2 mission was India’s first attempt to land on lunar  surface. 
  • The Indian Space Research Organization had planned its landing on the South Pole of the lunar surface.

27th National children’s science congress 2019 held for the 1st time in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

  • The Vice President of India, Shri Muppavarapu Venkaiah Naidu has attended the 27th edition of National Children’s Science Congress (NCSC) 2019 based on the theme “Science, Technology and Innovation for a clean, green and healthy nation” held for the 1st time at Mar Ivanios College in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala from December 27 -31,2019.

NITI Aayog Released 2nd SDG India Index 2019 in New Delhi 

  • Kerala topped the index NITI Aayog Releases SDG India IndexOn December 31, 2019 NITI (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog has released the 2nd edition of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) India Index and dashboard for the year 2019 in New Delhi.
  • Kerala topped the index with a score of 70.
  • The index gives a brief analysis on the progress made by states and union territories(UTs) towards achieving the 2030 SDG targets.

Sanjay Gupta of ‘Jagran’ to be honoured with Lokmanya Tilak journalism award     

  • Sanjay Gupta, the editor-in-chief of ‘Jagran’ will be honored with “Lokmanya Tilak National Journalism Award” for his great contribution in the field of Journalism.

IPS Arun kumar sinha gets 1 year tenure extension

  • The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC), Government of India (GoI), has approved the extension in the deputation tenure of Special Protection Group (SPG) director, Arun Kumar Sinha.
  • His term of deputation ended on 19 March 2020,which has been increased to 30 July 2021.

DG All India Radio F Sheheryar retires from service

  • Director-General, All India Radio, F. Sheheryar has retired from service.
  • He took the charge of the Director-General, All India Radio in 2014.
  • He joined the Indian Broadcasting (Programme) Service in 1981.

Mergers and acquisitions

Government of India signed MoU with Flipkart under DAY-NULM scheme

  • Government of India signed MoU with Flipkart for selling the products made by women self help group under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Urban Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NULM) on e-commerce platform.
  • DAY-NULM consists of 44 lakh women across the country which aims to make women financially independent.
  • According to Union Housing and Urban Affairs Secretary Durga Shanker Mishra, 12 lakh people have trained in the past five years and nearly 5.06 lakh people were given funds by the government to start their own business.

HDFC Life joins hands with Paytm to expand its distribution

HDFC Life Insurance, a long-term life insurance provider has entered into the partnership with Paytm, an Indian e-commerce payment system to allow the latter’s 450 million registered customers to purchase insurance products from HDFC Life.

Through this partnership, HDFC Life will deepen the penetration of its product offers and enable more customers to access their risk solutions anytime, anywhere.

HDFC Life had already tied up with India’s 2nd largest telecom company – Airtel to issue product portfolio within seconds.

  • HDFC Headquarters– Mumbai
  • MD & CEO– Ms. Vibha Padalkar


Nagaland Assembly Speaker passes away

  • Nagaland Legislative Assembly Speaker Vikho-o Yhoshü passed away at Mumbai hospital this morning. He was 69

Sports News

ICC plans to scrap five-day Tests from 2023

  • The International Cricket Council plans to scrap five-day Tests from 2023.
  • The ICC could make four-day Tests mandatory from 2023 as part of the World Test Championship, primarily to free up the crowded calendar.
  • Tests have been played over five days through most of their 140-year history.
  • England has backed the plan.
  • A spokesperson of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said, it could provide a sustainable solution to the complex scheduling needs and players’ workloads.
  • BCCI President Sourav Ganguly has said, it was too early to make a comment on the matter. 

Australia’s Peter Siddle has announced his retirement from international cricket

  • Australia pacer Peter Siddle Australian cricketer Peter Siddle has announced his retirement from international cricket on December 29, 2019 after 11 years in the game.
  • He is 34 years old. 

Important Days

January 2 National Science Fiction Day

  • National Science Fiction Day is unofficially celebrated by many science fiction fans in the United States on January 2, which corresponds with the official birth date of famed science fiction writer Isaac Asimov.

Birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh being celebrated 

  • The birth anniversary of the tenth Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh ji is being celebrated today.
  • Born in 1666, Guru Gobind Singh is considered to be one of the most celebrated of all Sikh gurus.

National News

Pariksha Pe Charcha 2020 rescheduled to 20th January

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s interaction programme Pariksha Pe Charcha 2020 with a cross-section of Students and Teachers from India and abroad to beat exam stress has been rescheduled to 20th January this year.
  • The programme has been rescheduled on account of Pongal, Makar Sankranti, Lohri, Onam and other festivals across the country.
  • The programme was earlier scheduled for 16th of January.

PM to felicitate states with Krishi Karman Awards for good agriculture production

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will pay a two-day visit to Karnataka from. After arriving to Bengaluru after noon the Prime Minister will take part in the Krishi award function in Tumkuru Junior College grounds. He will hand over Krishi Karman Award to 21 states that have recorded good agriculture production in various categories during the previous crop seasons.
  • He will also distribute fishing equipment. In the evening, he will visit Defence Research and Development Organisation, DRDO, where he will dedicate five DRDO Young Scientists Laboratories to the nation. The Prime Minister will address the scientists following a visit to the exhibits on innovative products developed by DRDO.

Pragati Maidan metro station renamed as Supreme Court station

  • Delhi government’s naming committee has decided to rename Pragati Maidan Metro station as Supreme Court Metro Station.
  • Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia announced this in New Delhi during a press conference. He said, the naming committee in its meeting also decided to rename Mukarba Chowk and its flyover after Kargil war martyr Captain Vikram Batra and Mehrauli – Badarpur Road as Acharya Sri Mahapragya Marg.

CACS & e-BCAS launched to enhance security & ease of doing at airports

  • Minister of State (I/C) for Civil Aviation launched the Biometric enabled Centralised Access Control System (CACS) and ‘e-BCAS Project Training Module’. The two projects aims to enhance security and ease of doing business at airports.
  • The CACS project is aimed to digitize the employee movement process at the airports. This multi-layered security system encompasses the uniqueness of the Airport Entry Permit (AEP) users, biometric authentication in addition to PIN-based identity verification through contactless smart card technology.
  • The ‘e-BCAS’ project envisaged to achieve a “paperless office” under e-Governance initiative of Government of India. The ‘e-BCAS Project: Training Module’ aims to switch from manual process of training to digital platform.
  • The objective of the e-BCAS project is to make all the activities in the BCAS transparent, user-friendly, and efficient. It also intends to provide an ease of doing business with the stakeholders.

International News

India first time ranks among top ten in Climate Change Performance Index

  • India for the first time ranks among the top ten in the Climate Change Performance Index, CCPI, which goes further to prove that all efforts and activities being currently undertaken by the government are setting a tone of vast improvements.
  • Government aims to increase the share of non-fossil fuels to 175 GigaWatt by 2022 and further take it to 450 GW. 
  • Air pollution is one of the biggest global environmental challenges of today.
  • A time bound national level strategy for pan India implementation to tackle the increasing air pollution problem in a comprehensive manner in the form of National Clean Air Programme was launched last year. 

Government cuts import duty on crude and refined Palm oil

  • Government has slashed import duty on refined palmolein from 50 per cent to 45 per cent and crude palm oil (CPO) from 40 per cent to 37.5 per cent with immediate effect.
  • The duty cut has been made under the ASEAN agreement and the India-Malaysia Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (IMCECA).

Russia deploys its 1st Avangard Hypersonic missile system

  • Russia’s 1st missile unit equipped with Avangard Hypersonic glide vehicle enters into service. Russia’s defence ministry stated that a new hypersonic weapon with latest strategic missiles of intercontinental range has became operational.
  • The nuclear-capable missiles can travel more than 20 times the speed of sound. They have a “glide system” that affords great manoeuvrability and could make them impossible to defend against.

State News

ISRO to set up second launch port in Thoothukodi district of Tamilnadu for small satellite launch vehicles

  • Indian Space Research Organisation will establish a second launch port in Thoothukodi district in Tamilnadu exclusively to launch small satellite launch vehicles.ISRO Chairman K Sivan informed that this will come up in 2300 acres.
  • On the lines of GPS navigation system developed by America, the Indian navigation system called Navic with the indigenous atomic clock will be operational with mobile phone manufacturers coming forward to install the regional navigation device.
  • On the progress made in India’s first manned mission to outer space Gaganyaan, the process of Astronaut selection is over and four men selected from Indian Air Force will leave for Russia to get training. The Gaganyaan mission is targeted to be launched by 2022.

Andhra Pradesh Government plans to deliver sand at door steps 

  • The Andhra Pradesh Government announced that it will deliver sand at customers’ doorsteps. As a pilot project, the government is to begin the initiative on experimental basis. 
  • Andhra Pradesh Mineral Development Corporation will stock 15 lakh tons of sand per month for the next four months. At present, the demand for sand in the state is 80,000 tonnes a day. The step will help address issues of sand scarcity and sand mafia.

Banking News

RBI launches MANI mobile app for visually challenged to identify denomination of currency notes

  • Reserve Bank of India, RBI has launched a mobile app, MANI, Mobile Aided Note Identifier, to help visually challenged people to identify denomination of currency notes.
  • The app, which is available both on Android and iOS operating systems, was launched by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das in Mumbai.
  • RBI said that the visually challenged can identify the denomination of a note by using the application, which can also work offline once it is installed. Through the downloaded app, users can scan the notes using the camera. The audio output will give the result in Hindi and English.

SBI to implement OTP-based ATM cash withdrawals from January 1 2020

  • State Bank of India will introduce One Time Password (OTP)-based ATM cash withdrawals. The step has been taken to reduce the occurrences of unauthorised transactions happening at ATMs. SBI will introduce one-time password for every cash withdrawal of Rs 10,000 and above between 8 am and 8 pm.
  • The OTP-based cash withdrawal will be effective from January 1, 2020 across all SBI ATMs. When an SBI cardholder will enter the amount of cash he/she wishes to withdraw, a screen will appear asking for the OTP. The customer will then have to put the OTP that the bank will send to the registered mobile number.
  • OTP is a system-generated string of numeric characters that allow users to make a single transaction. The facility will not be applicable at other banks’ ATM as this functionality has not been developed in National Financial Switch (NFS).

Science and Technology

IIT Guwahati researchers develop materials to produce energy from water on a small scale

  • According to IIT-Guwahati these new ways of producing energy can be employed in household environments to support the concept of decentralization of energy sources. 
  • The researchers of IIT Guwahati employed the nanoscale phenomenon called “Electrokinetic streaming potential” to harvest energy from flowing water on the small length scale like water flowing through household water taps. 
  • Similarly, the “Contrasting Interfacial Activities” different types of semiconducting materials were employed to generate power from stagnant water.

List of Nuclear Installations exchanged between India and Pakistan 

  • India and Pakistan exchanged their nuclear installations under an agreement that prevents them from attacking each other’s atomic facilities. The practice is being followed for 29 years for now. 
  • India and Pakistan exchanged the list of nuclear installations under the Agreement on Prohibition of attack against nuclear installations. The exchange was done based on diplomatic channels simultaneously in Islamabad and New Delhi. 

Sports News

MS Dhoni picked captain of ESPN Cricinfo’s ODI and T20 teams of past decade

  • Former India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni was picked as captain of ESPN Cricinfo’s ODI and Twenty20 teams of the decade, while Virat Kohli was named the leader in Tests.
  • Kuldeep Yadav, and Yuzvendra Chahal, were the only other Indians to make the Test XI, which also featured England’s Alastair Cook and New Zealand’s Kane Williamson.
  • Jasprit Bumrah found a place, alongside Kohli and Dhoni in the T20 XI, dominated by Caribbean players. As many as five West Indies players were named in the team, including Universe boss Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard and Andre Russell.
  • Former skipper Mithali Raj and fast bowler Jhulan Goswami were named in the same women’s team picked for both the ODIs and T20s.  Australia’s inspirational cricketer, Meg Lanning was named the captain of the side.

Sai Deepak sets new Guinness World Records for most side lunges

  • B Sai Deepak has set a Guinness World Records for most side lunges in 60 seconds.
  • Deepak scripted the record by doing 59 side lunges in 60 seconds, which is his fourth overall Guinness World Records.
  • The previous record was held by Pakistan national Irfan Mehsood. 

Can you score 15/ 15 in Today’s Current Affairs Quiz? Attempt the Current Affairs Quiz of January 1& 2, 2019 now from the link given below. (It took topper to score 15/15 in 6 minutes 18 seconds, beat that if you can). 

Daily Current Affairs Quiz – January 1 & 2, 2020

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