Daily Current Affairs : October 16, 2020

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Important Days

World Food Day- October 16:

  • World Food Day is an international day celebrated every year around the world on 16 October in honour of the date of the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 1945.
  • Theme: “Grow, Nourish, Sustain. Together. Our actions are our future”

National News:

Director General of Shipping notified as National Authority for Recycling of Ships:

  • Government has notified Director General of Shipping as National Authority for Recycling of Ships. DG Shipping is designated as apex authority under Section 3 of the Recycling of Ships Act, 2019 for the ship recycling industry of India and the office of the national authority will be set up in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
  • National Authority for Recycling of Ships will administer, supervise and monitor all activities relating to ship recycling. Under the ship recycling Act, India has acceded to Hong Kong Convention for ship recycling under the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Pernod Ricard India Foundation partners with WWF India to secure future of wild elephants in Assam:

  • Pernod Ricard India Foundation and WWF India announced a partnership to secure the future of wild elephants in Assam. It aims to conserve the Asian elephant through effective human-elephant conflict management in Assam.
  • The project will work across 150 villages in Kamrup, Sonitpur, Biswanath, and Nagaon districts and train community members on effective situation management by developing a toolkit and forming anti-depredation squads would help them protect their property, crops, and lives.


  • Capital: Dispur
  • Chief Minister: SarbanandaSonowal
  • Governor: Jagdish Mukhi
  • National Parks: Orang National Park, Manas National Park or Manas Wildlife Sanctuary, Dibru-Saikhowa National Park, Kaziranga National Park, Nameri National Park, Dehing Patkai Wls.

Arvind Kejriwal Launches ‘Red Light On, Gaadi Off’ campaign to reduce air pollution in Delhi:

  • Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal launched ‘Red Light On, Gaadi Off’ a new anti-pollution campaign under people will be encouraged to switch engines of their vehicles off while waiting at traffic signals. It can reduce PM10 emissions by 1.5 tonnes a year and PM2.5 emissions by 0.4 tonnes a year
  • Four percentage pollution is due to stubble burning in Delhi-National Capital Region (NCR), while the remaining Ninety-Six Percentage is due to local factors like biomass burning, garbage dumping, etc.

New Delhi:

  • Chief Minister: Arvind Kejriwal
  • Governor: Anil Baijal

“SAKHI” One-Stop Service Centre for Women Inaugurated in Ramban District of Jammu and Kashmir:

  • Jammu and Kashmir inaugurated “SAKHI” One-Stop Service Centre for women in Ramban district.
  • It aims to facilitate access to integrated range of services including medical aid, police assistance, legal aid, psycho-social counselling and temporary support services to women affected by violence to women affected by violence.

Jammu and Kashmir:

  • Capital: Srinagar (summer), Jammu (winter)
  • Lt Governor: Manoj Sinha
  • National Parks: Hemis National Park, City Forest (Salim Ali) National Park, Dachigam National Park, Kishtwar National Park.
  • Wildlife Sanctuaries: Changthang Cold Desert WLS, Gulmarg WLS, Jasrota WLS, Baltal-Thajwas WLS, Karakoram (Nubra Shyok) WLS.

Pinarayi Vijayan launches Kerala’s first water taxi service in Alappuzha:

  • Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan launched the first water taxi service of the State Water Transport Department (SWTD) in Alappuzha. A catamaran diesel-powered craft will be used for the water taxi service. 
  • The tariff fixed had been 750 for 30 minutes and boat service capable of carrying 10 people. The state is focusing on the completion of the Kovalam-Bekal waterway. 


  • Chief Minister: Pinarayi Vijayan
  • Governor: Arif Mohammed Khan

Union Cabinet approves Rs 5,718 crore World Bank-aided STARS project to boost school education system:

  • Union Cabinet approved the Strengthening Teaching-Learning and Results for States (STARS) project under the new National Education Policy to support states in strengthening the school education system, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar stated. The total project cost is Rs 5718 crore with the financial support of World Bank amounting to US $ 500 million (approximately Rs. 3700 crore).
  • The project will cover six States namely Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala and Odisha.

Cabinet approves Rs 520-crore package under National Rural Livelihood Mission for Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh:

  • Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved a special package of Rs 520 crore for Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh under the National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM). It has been approved for a period of five years till the financial year 2023-24.
  • Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihood Mission (DAY-NRLM) will ensure sufficient funds to both the Union Territories with the aim to eliminate rural poverty and improved access to financial services.


  • Capital: Ladakh
  • Governor: Radha Krishna Mathur

Union Education Minister virtually launches ‘KAPILA’ Kalam Program for IP Literacy and Awareness Education campaign:

  • Union Education Minister Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ virtually launched the ‘KAPILA’ Kalam Program for Intellectual Property Literacy and Awareness campaign on the 89th birth anniversary of former President and Scientist Late Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. 
  • Students pursuing education in higher educational institutions will get information about correct system of application process for patenting their invention.

Punjab Cabinet approves BR Ambedkar SC post-Matric scholarship scheme to enable SC students to pursue higher learning:

  • Punjab Cabinet cleared the decks for the State Government to launch its own SC Post Matric Scholarship Scheme in place of the Centre’s defunct scheme, in order to facilitate SC students to pursue higher education in government and private institutions.
  • Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh also announcing increase in income criteria from earlier Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 4 lakh to accommodate more students.


  • Capital: Chandigarh
  • Chief Minister: Captain Amarinder Singh
  • Governor: V P Singh Badnore

MSME Ministry integrates AI and ML on its Single Window portal ‘Champions’:

  • Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises has introduced Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) powered tools on its single window system ‘Champions’ in a bid to take a proactive stance on matters related to the MSMEs.
  • This AI transformation has been enabled by Intel over a period of five months.
  • This multi-modal system also comprises technology equipped physical control rooms at around 69 locations in the country.
  • MSME Ministry is also aggressively working in the direction of Industry 4.0 to give a boost to the MSME sector.

Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises:

  • Cabinet Minister: Nitin Gadkari, Constituency: Nagpur 
  • Minister of State: Pratap Chandra Sarangi.

Hiranandani Group Subsidiary GreenBase Signs MoU with Tamil Nadu to Set up Industrial and Logistics Park:

  • GreenBase a Hiranandani Group subsidiary has signed an MoU with Tamil Nadu to set up an industrial and logistics park at Vadakkuppattu, Oragadaman at an investment of ₹750cr. Park envisages development of built-up area for companies planning to set up manufacturing & logistics units.
  • The proposed park, about 45 kms from the city, envisages development of 2.8 million square feet of built-up area for companies planning to set up manufacturing and logistics units.

Tamil Nadu:

  • Capital: Chennai
  • Chief Minister: Edappadi K. Palaniswami
  • Governor: Banwarilal Purohit.
  • National Park: Mukurthi NP, Guindy NP,Gulf of Mannar Marine NP, Indira Gandhi (Annamalai) NP, Mudumalai NP.

International News:

India among high-burden TB nations to register 25-30 pc drop in Tuberculosis case notifications; WHO report:

  • According to WHO report, a drop of around 25-30 per cent in Tuberculosis case notifications was reported in three high-burden countries India, Indonesia and Philippines between January and June 2020, compared to the corresponding period in 2019.
  • WHO has collated data from over 200 countries that has shown significant reductions in TB case notifications, could lead to a dramatic increase in additional TB deaths.

World Health Organisation (WHO):

  • Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland
  • Head: Tedros Adhanom
  • Chief Scientist: Soumya Swaminathan
  • Founded: 7 April 1948

India provides USD 1 million dollars to UNRWA for Palestinian refugees:

  • India contributed USD one million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) in the Near East to support Palestinian refugees who have been facing extreme challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a move hailed by the UN body as “Timely Help”. 
  • Government of India handed over the contribution cheque to the UN agency through its representative in Palestine, Sunil Kumar.
  • This aid will support the Agency’s programmes and services, including education, health care, relief and social services.

UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees):

  • Headquarters: Amman, Jordan
  • Deputy Commissioner-General: Leni Stenseth
  • Commissioner-General: Philippe Lazzarini

Banking and Economy

Indian Bank inks MoU with SIDBI and Housing Ministry for street vendors:

  • Indian Bank has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs and Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) for payment of subsidy to street vendors under SVANidhi Scheme.
  • Government introduced the Prime Minister Street Vendor’s Atmanirbhar Nidhi (SVANidhi Scheme) to provide loans to vendors and hawkers, among others.

Hyderabad Based Finance Platform Vivifi Launches “FlexPay” to Offer Credit on UPI:

  • Hyderabad based Vivifi India Finance Private Limited had earlier launched an emergency personal line of credit product FlexSalary, has launched “FlexPay”, a payment option offering credit on Unified Payments Interface(UPI).
  • Flexpay will allow customers purchase offline by scanning any UPI QR code or a UPI ID. It will facilitate credit to all salaried and self-employed so that they can purchase the products or services even when they are out of money.

IRDAI to offer a standard term life policy, ‘Saral Jeevan Bima’ from January 2021:

  • Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has come out with a standard, individual term life insurance product called “Saral Jeevan Bima”. This will be mandatorily offered by all life insurance companies from January 1, 2021, onwards. Insurers have to file the product with the regulator latest by December 1.
  • The Saral Jeevan Bima product to be offered by all life insurance companies will be a non-linked non-participating individual pure-risk premium life insurance plan.

IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority):

  • Headquarters: Hyderabad, Telangana.
  • Chairman: Subhash Chandra Khuntia.

IKEA partners with Mastercard and Citi bank India to launch “IKEA Family Credit Card by Citi”:

  • Swedish home furnishings major IKEA has joined hands with the Citibank India and Mastercard to launch ‘IKEA Family Credit Card by Citi’. This card provides instant in-store card bookings, direct payments via Bharat QR, accelerated reward points and attractive EMIs. It offers customers an affordable EMI (Equated Monthly Installments) option for 3 to 48 months.
  • Family card will also offer reward points on all purchases with instant reward redemption at IKEA. It will be available to IKEA Family members at ‘zero joining fee and zero annual fee’.

Acquisitions and Mergers

Flipkart-owned PhonePe Partners with Bajaj Allianz General Insurance to Launch Car and Bike Insurance Products:

  • Flipkart-owned PhonePe launched Car and Bike Insurance products on its platform in association with Bajaj Allianz General Insurance.
  • With this launch, over 230 million registered PhonePe users to insure their vehicles under 2 minutes, without the need for any documents to be uploaded before the purchase, and also view their policy documents instantly on the app.


  • Chief Executive Officer(CEO): Sameer Nigam

Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company:

  • Managing Director(MD) and Chief Executive Officer(CEO): Tapan Singhel
  • Headquarters: Pune, Maharashtra
  • Parent organizations: Bajaj Finserv Ltd., Allianz SE

Appointments and Resignations

President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbai Jeenbekov steps down:

  • Kyrgyzstan President Sooronbai Jeenbekov announced his resignation in a bid to end the turmoil that has engulfed the Central Asian nation after a disputed parliamentary election. He was also the Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan from 2016 to 2017.


  • Capital: Bishkek 
  • Currency: Kyrgyzstani Som
  • Prime Minister: Kubatbek Boronov

Government extends the tenure of NTPC, CMD Gurdeep Singh till July 2025:

  • Government of India has extended the tenure of Shri Gurdeep Singh, Chief Managing Director (CMD) of NTPC till July 2025. The extension will be effective from Feb 4, 2021.
  • Gurdeep Singh completed mechanical engineer from NIT Kurukshetra and has undergone Management Education Program from IIM Ahmedabad (India).

National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC):

  • Headquarters: New Delhi, India
  • Chairman and Managing Director: Gurdeep Singh
  • Founded: 1975

Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary K Shanmugam gets three month’s extension:

  • Centre approves the extension of service for three months to Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary K Shanmugam in view of the COVID-19 situation. This is the second extension for Shanmugam who was to retire from service on July 31 2020. He is a 1985-batch Indian Administrative Service(IAS) officer.

Awards and Recognitions:

Chandigarh University bags first rank in India for filling highest number of patents in a year:

  • According to India’s Intellectual Property Annual Report 2018-19 Chandigarh University Gharuan has emerged as Top Stand-Alone University in India for filling highest number (336) of patents in a year. 
  • Twenty-seven Indian Institute of Technology (IIT’s) have collectively filed 557 patents. Chandigarh University is followed by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) with 239 patent applications, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) with 202 applications and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) with 173 applications.

Books and Authors:

A Book titled “Mr Prime Minister, We Shrank the Dragon” authored by Pradeep Goorha:

  • Pradeep Goorha, is all set for the release of his second book “Mr Prime Minister, We Shrank the Dragon”. The book will be published by Partridge Publishing India
  • The Fiction book is based on the reality around the issues along the Northern borders of India and the illegal occupation of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir(PoK), Gilgit-Baltistan by Pakistan.

Obituary News

India’s First Oscar-winning costume designer Bhanu Athaiya passes away at 91:

  • Bhanu Athaiya, the costume designer who became the first Indian to win an Oscar, for Richard Attenborough’s “Gandhi” (1982), died at her home in Mumbai after a prolonged illness. She also designed costumes for over 100 Bollywood movies.

Veteran cricket journalist and commentator Kishore Bhimani passes away at 80:

  • Veteran cricket journalist and commentator Kishore Bhimani passed away on at the age of 80. He was considered an encyclopaedia of the game, is best remembered for being on air during the tied Test of 1986 between India and Australia in Chepauk. 
  • He had received a lifetime achievement award for his decades long contribution in the fields of media and commentary in 2013.

Renowned Malayalam poet Akkitham Achuthan Namboothiri passes away at 94:

  • Padma Shri awardee Akkitham Achuthan Namboothiri is also known for his critical essays, short stories and other literary works. His works have been translated into multiple languages. He is a recipient of Jnanpith Award (2019), India’s highest literary honour and Padma Shri (2017). 

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