January 23, 2020

National

  1. Jharia most polluted city in India: Greenpeace Report
  • Greenpeace India has recently released a list of India’s most polluted cities. The Greenpeace index says that Jharkhand’s Jharia is the most polluted city in the country.
  • Delhi has been ranked at number 10 this year while it was at number eight a year ago. According to the report, Dhanbad (in Jharkhand), is the second most polluted city in India, known for its coal reserves and industry.
  • Six of the top 10 polluted cities are from Uttar Pradesh – Noida, Ghaziabad, Bareilly, Allahabad, Moradabad, and Firozabad.
  1. UNAIDS round-table meet held at Davos
  • United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) was recently organized at the World Economic Forum (WEF) at Davos, Switzerland.
  • The organization works with a vision to eradicate HIV infections, AIDS-related deaths, and busting myths.
  • A global declaration against AIDS was the first time adopted in 2016 that seeks to eliminate AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.
  1. Centre for tougher law against sexual harassment at work
  • Group of Ministers finalises recommendations, which will be put up for public comments.
  • The Group of Ministers (GoM) headed by Home Minister Amit Shah, which was constituted to strengthen the legal framework to prevent sexual harassment at the workplace, has finalised its recommendations.
  • The recommendations, which include addition of new provisions to the Indian Penal Code, will be put up for comments from the public.
  • The GoM was constituted first in October 2018 in the aftermath of the #MeToo movement after many women shared their ordeal on social media. It was reconstituted in July 2019 under Mr. Shah.
  • The other members of the GoM are Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Human Resource and Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal and Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani.
  • The Women and Child Development Ministry had steered the Sexual Harassment of Women and Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act in 2013, which was applicable to government offices, the private sector, NGOs and the unorganised sector.

State

  1. Maharashtra Govt’s order: Compulsory for school students to recite preamble
  • Maharashtra Government has issued an order that all schools must recite constitution preamble from January 26.
  • The government ordered that students will read the Preamble of the Constitution so that they know its importance. The government said that this is a very old proposal of the government but we will implement it from January 26, 2020.
  • It came into the limelight in 2013 when the then government proposed to recite the preamble in schools. Maharashtra government issued an order when protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) are going on across the country.
  1. Telangana polls to use face recognition app
  • The Telangana State Election Commission will use the Facial Recognition App during the municipal elections. It will be used as a pilot project at 10 selected polling stations.
  • Voters will be identified through the Face Recognition App. However, manual verification will also be there.
  • Telangana election commission said that if any negative result appeared then the voter will not be deprived of his right to vote.
  1. UP Govt launches Mukhyamantri Krishak Durghatna Kalyan Yojana
  • Uttar Pradesh Government has launched Mukhyamantri Krishak Durghatna Kalyan Yojana which will provide financial assistance to family of farmers who die or become handicapped while working in fields.
  • Government has also decided to implement Mukhyamantri Paryatan Samvardhan Yojana to boost tourism in state.
  • Under the ‘Mukhyamantri Krishak Durghatna Kalyan Yojana, if a farmer or any member of his family dies while working in a field then they will be given financial assistance of five lakh rupees. For the first time, the scheme will also include the Bataidars, who work in the field of other persons and share the crop after it is harvested.
  • The scheme will cover farmers and their family members in the age group of 18-70 years and will be implemented from 14th September last year.
  • Talking about another ambitious scheme of government, Mr Sharma stated that under Mukhyamantri Paryatan Samvardhan Yojana one tourist point will be developed with a fund of 50 lakh rupees in each and every assembly segment of the state.
  1. Hyderabad Metro Rail, redBus tie up for carpool services in city
  • In an effort to strengthen its last mile connectivity project, Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited launched a car and bike pooling service in collaboration with
  • This facility would be provided through rPool, an in-app ride-sharing service from redBus.
  • Car pooling and bike pooling is an ideal solution to reduce congestion by sharing vehicles. It allows office-goers to avail and offer rides in their personal cars,bikes while commuting between home and their workplace. This concept would help the creation of sustainable and eco-friendly solutions for the burgeoning traffic problems in the city
  • Dedicated space has been offered for rPool to set up kiosks for customer service, along with parking facilities for ride-givers through the app. In addition to this, rPool’s customer service executives posted at the stations will provide 1,000 metro smart cards to its customers.
  1. Visually impaired cricketers to get exclusive sports ground in Bengaluru
  • Visually impaired cricketers are likely to get a dedicated sports training complex that will enable them to develop into professional players, the Cricket Association for the Blind in India (CABI).
  • CABI has approached the Karnataka government with a request to allot 25 acres of land to set up a sports complex with a training ground, gymnasium and swimming pool, and has received a positive response, Mahantesh G K, President, CABI and head of Samarthanam Trust for the Disabled, told media persons in Bengaluru
  • The entire facility will be sensitive to the needs of people with visual and other disabilities so that everyone can come and practice their respective sports.
  • CABI has been striving to develop cricket on a large scale among visually impaired people by identifying and encouraging school students, and adults.

International

  1. World Employment and Social Outlook report released
  • International Labour Organisation (ILO) has recently released the World Employment and Social Outlook-2020 report.
  • The report highlights key challenges and issues of labour market such as unemployment, income inequality, working poverty, income share, etc.
  • The report highlighted that about 188 million people are unemployed around the world. It has also informed in the report that about 165 million people don’t get enough money to work.

Banking & Finance

  1. Vodafone m-pesa’s certificate of authorisation cancelled by RBI
  • The Reserve Bank of India cancelled the Certificate of Authorisation (CoA) of Vodafone m-pesa after its voluntary surrender of authorisation.
  • The company henceforth cannot transact business of issuance and operation of Prepaid payment Instruments
  • The central bank, however, stated that the customers or merchants having a valid claim on the company as a PSO, can approach the company till September 30, 2022, for settlement of their claims within three years from the date of cancellation.
  • “The Reserve Bank of India, in exercise of the powers conferred on it under the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007, has cancelled the Certificate of Authorisation (CoA) of the below mentioned Payment System Operator (PSO) on account of voluntary surrender of authorization.

Sports

  1. Indian shooters Divyansh Singh Pawar, Apurvi Chandela Clinch Gold in Meyton Cup
  • Indian shooters Divyansh Singh Pawar and Apurvi Chandela have clinched a gold medal each in Meyton Cup in Innsbruck, Austria.
  • The Meyton Cup is a private tournament where shooters go on their own to participate to gain experience before international events.
  • While Divyansh won the gold in the men’s 10m air rifle event with an effort of 249.7, Auprvi bagged the yellow metal in the 10m air rifle women’s category with a 251.4.
  • Deepak Kumar and Anjum Moudgil also a bagged bronze medal each in men’s and women’s 10m air rifle events respectively. Deepak shot 228 en route the bronze, while Anjum’s effort of 229 also fetched her a podium finish.
  1. Sachin Tendulkar, Courtney Walsh to coach Aussie bushfire relief match
  • Cricket legends Sachin Tendulkar and Courtney Walsh will coach star-studded teams in a charity match to raise funds for victims of Australia’s bushfires, organisers.
  • The former Test captains are the latest players to come out of retirement for the appeal, joining Aussie greats Adam Gilchrist, Brett Lee, Michael Clarke and Shane Watson.
  • India’s Tendulkar and Windies fast bowler Walsh will coach teams skippered by Shane Warne and Ricky Ponting respectively. Steve Waugh and Australian coach Justin Langer will also have non-playing roles.

Appointment & Resignation

  1. Punit Sood appointed as the Head of RBS India
  • RBS India, the technology and operations hub of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), has appointed Punit Sood as the Head of RBS India.
  • Punit was earlier appointed as the Head of Technology India, where he shaped the India Technology business to function as a centre of excellence for RBS.
  • Previously,he was serving as the advisor of Cornerstone Venture Partners Fund, a technology-focused global VC (Venture Capital) funds.
  1. Former FM Elyes Fakhfakh named PM-designate
  • Tunisia’s President Kais Saied has named former Finance Minister Elyes Fakhfakh as Prime Minister-designate.
  • After months of negotiations that followed elections last October, parliament dismissed a cabinet list proposed under the leadership of the Islamist-inspired Ennahdha party.
  • Ennahdha won more seats than any other party in October’s legislative election, but was still far short of a majority.
  • Tunisia is currently run by an outgoing government led by Prime Minister Youssef Chahed.

Award & Honors

  1. Priya Prakash wins Cisco Youth Leadership Award 2019
  • Priya Prakash, the founder and CEO of India based HealthSetGo, has won the Global Citizen Prize: Cisco Youth Leadership Award for 2019 for her school health program that aims at providing 360 degree healthcare support to children.
  • The prestigious award honours an individual aged 18 – 30 who is bringing about a positive change in the world by solving some of its biggest global challenges.
  • The award includes a US $250,000 prize paid to the individual’s organisation to which the individual contributes, to further their mission of accelerating global problem solving.
  • Prakash’s HealthSetGo is a healthcare organisation that supports the UN’s global sustainable development goals and is dedicated to improving the health and lives of children.
  1. Sparsh Ganga initiative’ wins Champions of Change Award
  • Environmentalist and social activist Arushi Nishank was honoured with the Champions of Change Award 2019 for her initiative towards cleaning and saving river Ganga, the Sparsh Ganga initiative. The second edition of the Champions of Change Award was held at Vigyan Bhawan (January 20).
  • The award is given under the transformation of Aspirational District Program announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in January last year.
  • The program identifies the progress of 115 ‘aspirational’ districts whose development is being monitored by NITI Aayog.

Books

  1. Human Dignity – A purpose in perpetuity, Ashwani Kumar’s latest book, launched by Manmohan Singh
  • The launch of former Union minister Ashwini Kumar’s book ‘Human Dignity — A purpose in perpetuity’ , Singh stated institutions of “our liberal and libertarian democracy” have been put to test on several occasions when fundamental freedoms were threatened.
  • The book was published by US(United States) based publisher
  • The books portrays the author’s view on issues related to freedom, dignity and justice faced in society.
  • Former Vice-President Hamid Ansari also took part on this occasion.

Science, Space & Technology

  1. France to train Indian flight surgeons for Gaganyaan mission
  • France will train Indian flight surgeons to enable them to monitor the health of astronauts selected for the ambitious human space mission
  • The two-week training is a critical aspect of the Gaganyaan project that is aimed at sending three Indians to space by
  • The flight surgeons, who will be Indian Air Force doctors specialising in aviation medicines and responsible for the health of astronauts before, during and after flight, will be shortlisted soon.
  • Those shortlisted will then undergo two weeks training in France. Brigitte Godard, a flight surgeon with the European Space Agency, was in India in July and August last year to start the training of physicians and engineers.
  • France has a well-established mechanism for space medicine. It also has the MEDES space clinic, a subsidiary of CNES, where space surgeons undergo training.
  • The four shortlisted astronauts — all test pilots from the Indian Air Force — are currently in Russia for an 11-month training programme. India and France share robust ties in the area of space.

Obituary

  1. Former India Test batsman Man Mohan Sood passes away
  • Former Test batsman and National selector Man Mohan Sood passed away . He was 80.
  • A batsman with a flair to play strokes, Sood made his first class debut against Services at Ferozeshah Kotla in 1957 and played his final Ranji Trophy match against Jammu and Kashmir at Srinagar in 1964
April 15, 2020

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