Monthly Current Affairs- September, 2020

Monthly Current Affairs
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Current Affairs is an important section to cover if one wish to appear in any kind of competitive exams like APSC, UPSC, all state civil service exams, Railway exams, SSC, RRBs, IAS, ACS, all Government job exams, TET, CTET and different banking exams like IBPS, SBI PO, SBI Clerk , RBI etc. We have covered the latest Monthly Current Affairs- September 2020. Visit our page regularly to get the latest informations and get updated and prepared for your exams.

Monthly Current Affairs- September 2020

Highlights

1. NASA launched Preseverance Rover

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National Aeronautics and Space Administration(NASA) launched the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover on 30th July, 2020. The primary goal of the rover will be to search for potential signs of past microbial life, or bio-signatures on the Red Planet.

Monthly Current Affairs- September, 2020

Key Points

  • The Rover was launched on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station , Florida.
  • The mission is designed to better understand the geology and climate of Mars.
  • The rover will test new technologies to benefit future human and robotic space exploration.
  • The rover will land at a site of Mars’ Jezero Crater on February 18, 2021.

2. Four more States and UTs integrated to One Nation One Ration Card scheme

The Union Government has extended the One Nation One Ration Card scheme to four more states and Union Territories.

Key Points

  • With the integration of four new states and Union Territories – Jammu & Kashmir , Manipur, Nagaland and Uttarakhand, the scheme has been enabled in 24 states and Union Territories now.
  • The ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ is a scheme in which a ration card holder can avail ration under National Food Security Act(NFSA) regardless of their location in the country.
  • According to official data available, around 81 crore beneficiaries are covered under the National Food Security Act(NFSA) in all the states and Union Territories where the scheme is enabled.

3. Natasurya Phani Sarma Award Presented

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On June 31, 2020 Chief Minister of Assam Sarbananda Sonowal presented the Natasurya Phani Sarma Award, 2020 to renowned theatre artistes Aishwarya Kakati and Bhabesh Baruah . The award comprises a man bastra,sarai, commendation and a cheque of Rs 2 lakh each.

4. NITI Aayog suggested to create Dak Bank

The NITI Aayog has recently suggested to create Dak Bank(Postal Bank) by merging the regional rural banks in order to further deepen financial inclusion in the country.

Key Points

  • The NITI Aayog has suggested the over 1.5 lakh post offices present in the country to make outlets for the proposed Dak Bank.
  • Another suggestion put forwarded by them is to make norms easier to grant bank licenses.
  • It also suggested privatisation of three banks, Bank of Maharashtra, Punjab & Sind Bank and UCO Bank.

5. IPL 2020 to be held in September

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The 13th edition of IPL(Indian Premier League) will be held from 19th September 2020.

Source – flickr

Key Points

  • The IPL – 2020 will start from 19th September and the final match will be played on November 10, 2020.
  • The tournament will be staged in the UAE and the matches will be hosted at three venues- Abu Dhabi , Dubai and Sharjah. (However these are subject to necessary clearances from the Government of India).
  • The tournament will be hosted for 53 days.
  • The comprehensive Standard Operating Procedures(SOPs) are being discussed by the Governing Council of IPL and will be finalised and published in due course.

6. Khadi Agarbatti Aatmanirbhar Mission approved

Union Minister for Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises(MSME) Nitin Gadkari has approved the Khadi Agarbatti Aatmanirbhar Mission with a view to raise production of Agarbattis.

Key Points

  • The scheme was proposed by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission(KVIC) with an aim to generate employment and make India self-reliant in agarbatti production.
  • The scheme will be launched very soon through public-private partnership which will involve small investment.
  • This will create thousands of jobs once fully implemented.
  • The scheme will aid the private agarbatti manufacturers to scale up production without much capital investment.
  • Khadi and Village Industries Commission(KVIC) will provide automatic incense sticks production and powder mixing machine to artisans by the private agarbatti producers under the scheme.
  • The machines will be provided by KVIC at a subsidy of 25% and the remaining amount will be recovered in easy installments.
  • The raw materisals will be provided by the business partners and the training costs of the artisan’s will be shared by KVIC and the business partners in 75:25 ratio.

7. Vidyarthi Vigyaan Manthan 2020-21 launched

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Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan launched ‘Vidyarthi Vigyaan Manthan, 2020-21‘ on August 1, 2020.

Key Points

  • The initiative is launched to popularize science among students of class 6th to 11th.
  • The programme will be utilized as a platform to identify the talents in the field of Science and to promote scientific acumen among the students.
  • Vidyarthi Vigyan Manthan, an initiative of Vijnana Bharati(VIBHA or Vigyan Bharti) is launched in collaboration with Vigyan Prasar and NCERT.
  • Through the programme students are asked to participate through comprehensive writing, objective type question answers , presentations, role play activities etc.
  • The Winners of Vidyarthi Vigyan Manthan gets an opportunity to visit National Science Laboratories and to interact renowned scientists of the country.

8. Swach Bharat Kranti launched

The book Swach Bharat Kranti was officially launched by Union Minister of Jal Shakti, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and Union Minister of Textiles and Women and Child Development, Smriti Irani on August 4, 2020.

About Swach Bharat Kranti

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The book “Swach Bharat Revolution” edited by Parmeshwaran Iyer has been translated into Hindi and published as “Swach Bharat Kranti“.

The book consist of 35 essays by a diverse range of stakeholders and contributors to the SBM which portrays the remarkable journey of the SBM(Swach Bharat Mission).

The essays are grouped into four key sections or pillars of SBM success – political leadership, public financing, Partnerships and people’s participation.

The book consist of a foreword by the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi……..Read More

9. DD Assam Channel Launched

Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javedkar launched a 24 hour dedicated channel DD Assam for the state of Assam on August 4, 2020. He launched the channel through video conferencing.

DD Assam

DD Assam Key Points

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  • The Channel is a state owned TV Channel and is being telecasted from Doordarshan Kendra, Assam.
  • The owner of the Channel is Prasar Bharti.
  • According to Prakash Javedkar “The Channel is a gift to people of Assam and this channel will cater to all sections of the population of Assam and will be immensely popular.”
  • The Minister also said that the region has immense natural and human resource potential and the connectivity in the state has been improving steadily.
  • According to the Governor of Assam Prof Jagdish Mukhi the moment of launch was a happy moment for Assam because the public broadcaster is adding a feather to its knitty with the launch of DD Assam.
  • Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said “This channel will boost the growth of Assam in all spheres of human, activities, while at the same time help percolate the initiatives and programmes of the Government to grassroot.”

About Prasar Bharti

Prasar Bharti is India’s largest public broadcasting statutory autonomous body. It was set up by an act of Parliament, Prasar Bharti Act-1990 . The agency was formed on 23 November, 1997. It comprises of two media units – the Doordarshan Television Network and All India Radio. The current chairperson of Prasar Bharti is Dr A. Surya Prakash.

About Doordarshan

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Doordarshan is an autonomous public service broadcaster of India which was established on 15 September 1959. It is one of the two divisions of Prasar Bharati. The organisation is India’s largest broadcasting organisations in studio and transmitter infrastructure. The current CEO of Doordarshan is Shashi Sekhar Vempati.

10. Sahakar Cooptube NCDC India – launched by Union Government

The Union Agricultural Minister Shri Narendra Singh Tomar launched a Youtube channel of NCDC(National Cooperative Development Corporation on August 4, 2020. The channel is named as “Sahakar Cooptube NCDC India”.

Sahakar Cooptube NCDC

About Sahakar Cooptube NCDC

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  • The new Youtube Channel will act as medium to involve the youth and farmers of the country in the cooperative movement by educating them about the benefits of cooperatives.
  • The Channel is aimed to boost Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan – a vision of making India self reliant in which government has taken numerous decisions like changing definitions of MSMEs, boosting scope of private participation in numerous sectors etc.
  • The Channel will release guidance videos in different languages covering 18 states . The videos are believed to strenghthen and deepen the major initiatives of government to promote and form 10000 FPOs.
    • It can be noted here that NCDC has a major role in forming FPOs in cooperative mode.
  • The guidance videos on formation and registration of a cooperative are produced by the NCDC design studio.….Read More

11. India’s first Kisan Rail flagged off

The Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal and Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Narendra Sing Tomar flagged off India’s first Kisan Rail train service via video conferencing on August 7 2020. The train started its journey from Devlali in Maharashtra to Danapur in Bihar.

Indias first Kisan Rail

Key Points

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  • With a view of doubling farmers’ income by 2022 Kisan rail has been flagged off as one of the steps taken by the government in that direction.
  • The Kisan rail is the first ever multi-commodity train service which will carry different agricultural products like vegetables, fruits, milk, meat, fish etc.
  • The train is equipped with frozen containers which would help the goods to be delivered in fresh condition.
  • The Kisan Rail train will cater to the long-term requirement of the farmers and traders for carrying their agricultural products which are of perishable nature to distant places.
  • The freight cost for Kisan Rail train service will be as per Indian Railways’ parcel tariff of normal train.
  • On its journey to Danapur it will halt at several stations like Nashik Road, Khandwa, Jalgaon, Manmad, Bhusaval, Burhanpur, Jabalpur, Itarsi, Manikpur, Buxar, Katni, Prayagraj, Chheoki, Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay Nagar and Satna.
  • Initially the train will operate on a weekly basis and it is subject to change based on user response.
  • The train will cut the transport time by 15 hours and cost farmers Rs 1,000 per tonne less than ferrying their produce by road…...Read More

12. TikTok and WeChat banned in the US through an executive order

The President of United States of America, Donald Trump has issued an executive order on August 6 2020 to ban any kind of transactions with the owners of the Chinese apps TikTok and WeChat, starting in 45 days.

Key Points

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  • The executive order came as US administration was stepping up to purge any kind of untrusted Chinese apps.
  • Trump administration believes that Chinese apps like TikTok and WeChat are significant threats to US internal security.
  • In one of the order, Trump said TikTok app may be used for disinformation campaigns that benefit the Chinese Communist Party, and the US “must take aggressive action against the owners of TikTok to protect our national security.”
  • In another order , Trump said WeChat ” automatically captures vast swaths of information from its users. This data collection threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information”.
  • The executive order would bar “any transaction by any person , or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, with ByteDance Ltd” in an effort to “address the national emergency with respect to the information and communication technology supply chain.”
  • The execuive order will also ban WeChat in the US in 45 days “to the extent permitted under applicable law, any transaction that is related to WeChat by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, with Tencent Holdings Ltd.”….Read More

13. G.C. Murmu Appointed as New CAG

The President of India Ram Nath Kovind appointed Girish Chandra Murmu as the new CAG on August 4 2020. He assumed office as the Comptrollar and Auditor-General of India the same Day.

G.C. Murmu Appointed as New CAG

About G.C. Murmu

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G.C. Murmu was born on November 21, 1959 in Mayurbhanj district of Odisha. He served as Joint Secretary in the Department of Expenditure, Additional Secretary in the Department of Financial Services and Department of Revenue. He also served as Special Secretary in the Department of Expenditure and later on appointed as the full-fledged Secretary of the same Department. Murmu was Principal Secretary to Narendra Modi during his tenure as Gujrat Chief Minister.

G.C. Murmu, a 1985-batch IAS officer of Gujarat cadre holds a post graduate degree in Political Science from Utkal University. He also holds an MBA degree from the University of Brimingham. Murmu completed his schooling at Baripada.

Before his appoinment as the Comptroller and Auditor General of India he was serving as the Lt Governor of Jammu and Kashmir. His tenure as the new CAG will be up to November 20, 2024. He succeeded Rajiv Mehrishi, a 1978 batch IAS officer of the Rajasthan cadre who completed his term on August 7 2020…….Read More

14. Submarine Cable launched by PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Chennai-Andaman and Nicobar Island Submarine Cable System on August 10 2020 through a video conferencing. The projects connects Chennai and Port Blair through Submarine Opticle Fibre Cable(OFC) for better internet connectivity and telecommunication.

Submarine Cable
PM Narendra Modi

Key Points

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  • The foundation stone of the project was laid by PM Narendra Modi on 30 December, 2018, at Port Blair.
  • The cost of the OFC project is Rs 1224 crore.
  • The length of the under water cable is 2,313 km.
  • The project has been funded by the Department of Telecommunicatiom and executed by state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL).
  • The OFC will provide internet speeds of up to 400 gbps till port Blair and 200 gbps in the other islands.
  • The underwater OFC link will deliver bandwidth of 2 x 200 GB per second between Chennai and Port Blair and 2 x 100 GB per second between Port Blair and Other islands…..Read More

15. Powerloom Board scrapped by GOI

The ministry of textile has disbanned the All India Powerloom Board through a notification issued on August 4 2020. Another notification stating change in the status of all eight Textiles Research Association (TRAs) has also been issued on August 6 2020.

The later notification states that the TRAs will now cease to be “affiliate bodies” of the ministry and will now be “approved bodies” for conducting testing, research and developmental activities related to the textile sector.

The Eight TRAs

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  • Northern India Textile Research Association, Gaziabad,
  • Ahmedabad Textile Industry’s Research Association,
  • Bombay Textile Research Association,
  • South India Textile Research Association, Coimbatore,
  • Synthetic and Art Silk Mills Research Association, Mumbai
  • Man-made Textile Research Association, Surat,
  • Wool Research Association, Thane,
  • Indian Jute Industry’s Research Association, Kolkatta..…….Read More

16. “Project Cheetah” to be revived by Indian Armed Forces

The Indian Armed Forces has decided to revive “Project Cheetah” which was pending for a long time. The tri-service have decided to revive the project amid border tensions with China. The project is expected to cost Rs 3500 to the exchequer.

Key Points

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  • The project ‘Cheetah’ will be revived to upgrade the drones used for carrying out offensive operations against the enemies.
  • Under the project the tri-services seeks to upgrade around 90 Heron drones by equipping them with laser guided bombs, precision guided munitions, air to ground and air-launched anti-tank guided missiles which would help to target enemy posts and regiments.
  • The proposal of reviving the project Cheetah has been sent to the high level defence ministry committee headed by Ajay Kumar.
  • The newly formed committee under Ajay Kumar is in charge of looking into the procurements for the Indian Army, Indian Navy and Indian Air Force….Read More

17. Skyroot Aerospace test fires India’s first Private Upper Stage Rocket Engine

The Skyroot Aerospace has become the first Indian private company to test fire a homegrown upper stage rocket engine. It has demonstrated for the first time the capability to build a homegrown rocket engine.

The Rocket Engine – Raman

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The 3D-printed rocket engine has been named after Noble laureate CV Raman. It is India’s first 100% 3D-printed bi-propellant liquid rocket engine injector. The rocket engine has fewer moving parts and weighs less than half of a conventional rocket engine of similar capacity. The engine has the capability of multiple restarts which enables the launch vehicle to insert various satellites into multiple orbits in a single mission.

Skyroot Aerospace

Aerospace startup Skyroot Aerospace is a Hyderabad based aerospace manufacturer and satellite manufacturing company founded by Pawan Kumar Chandana and Naga Bharath Daka, both former scientists at the Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO). The company was founded on June 12 2008. Since its inception it has earned fame for its Vikram series of launch vehicles – Vikram I, Vikram II and Vikram III.

Skyroot Aerospace plans to build a family of rockets. It is expected that the first rocket, which can hurl satellites of 250-700 kgs into a lower earth orbit will be launched by the end of 2021.The firm has raised 31.5 crore from investors to develop the family of rockets and is in continuous talks to raise 90 crore by mid-2021.

18. ‘Transparent Taxation – Honouring The Honest’ Platform launched

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The Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi launched the ‘Transparent Taxation – Honouring The Honest’ Platform through a video conferencing on August 14 2020.

The PM also unveiled Taxpayers Charter and faceless assessment which are the next phases of direct tax reforms aimed at easing compliance and rewarding honest taxpayers as the government looks to re-built the COVID-19 hit economy….Read More

19. Project Lion, Project Dolphin launched by PM Modi during I-Day celebration

Addressing the nation on 74th Independence day the Prime Minister of India announced about the launch of Project Lion and Project Dolphin to save the Asiatic Lions and Gangetic Dolphins along the lines of Project Tiger and Project Elephant.Read More

20. The 4th session of BRICS anti-drug working group held

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The 4th session of BRICS anti-drug working group was held on August 12 under the Chairmanship of Russia. The Indian side was led by the Director General of Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) Rakesh Asthana. The delegation comprised of Smt. B. Radhika, Deputy Director General (Ops), NCB, Ms. Vrindaba Gohil, First Secretary (Trade), Embassy of India, Moscow, Dr. Vaibhav Tandale, Under Secretary(Multilateral Economic Relations), MEA and Shri KPS Malhotra, Deputy Director(Ops), NCB.

The 4th session of BRICS anti-drug working group – Key Points

  • Fruitful exchange of opinions concerning the drug situation in the BRICS states, the international and regional trends of illegal trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors, as well as the impact of various internal and external factors on the situation took place during the summit.
  • All the BRICS nation agreed to some common points which includes need for real-time information sharing among the member states and need to curb increased drug trafficking through maritime routes.
  • One of the key focal area of the meeting was the misuse of Darknet and other advanced technologies for drug trafficking.
  • A communique was adopted in the meeting to reaffirm the commitment of 5 member states to international anti-drug convention.

What is Darknet ?

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Darknet is the deep hidden internet platform that is used for various illegal activities like exchange of pornographic material, narcotics sale, exchange of sensitive personal data of individuals by using the secret alleys of the onion router(ToR) to stay away from the surveillance of the law enforcing agencies. It is an overlay network within the internet that can be accessed with specific software, configurations or authorizations. and often uses a unique customised communication protocol.

BRICS

BRICS is an informal group of five states comprising the Russian Federation, the Republic of India, the Federative Republic of Brazil, the Republic of South Africa and the People’s Republic of China. It was formed in 2009 with four states grouped as BRIC. The Republic of South Africa was inducted in 2010.

Since it’s formation, the BRICS nations have met annually at formal summits. The first such summit was held in Yekaterinburg on 16 June 2009. Most recently the 11th BRICS summit was held on 13-14 November 2019 under the theme “Economic Growth for a Innovative Future“.

21. ORUNODOI Scheme by Assam Government

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The Government of Assam is going to launch “Orunodoi“, the largest Direct Benefit Transfer Scheme of Assam on October 2, 2020. Under the scheme over 19 lakh households will get a sum of Rs 830 each every month. The scheme was announced by the Finance Minister of Assam Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma in his Budget speech 2020-21….Read More

22. International Solar Alliance to hold World Solar Technology Summit

The International Solar Alliance is going to hold World Solar Technology Summit for the first time. The summit will be held on September 8, 2020.

Objective of the Summit

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The summit will be held to bring together scientists, engineers and member states to sit down together and think about what the challenges are in realising the dream of making energy affordable and abundant.

Key Points

  • The World Solar Technology Summit will be held on a virtual platform due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
  • PM Modi is expected to deliver the inaugural address of the first World Solar Technology Summit.
  • The occasion will be graced by Ministers from member countries, High-level dignitaries from the world of Scientific Research and Development, Senior Government Functionaries, Heads of Global Corporations, Financial and Multilateral Institutions, Civil society, Foundations and Think Tanks.
  • The Key note address will be presented by Nobel Laureate Dr. M Stanley Whittingham.…Read More

23. National Recruitment Agency (NRA) approved by Central Government

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The Union Government has approved the creation of a National Recruitment Agency (NRA) to conduct an online Common Eligibility Test for selecting candidates for majority of Central Government jobs on August 19 2020…Read More

24. India-Israel Cultural Agreement Signed

India and Israel signed a cultural agreement for the year 2020-23 to strengthen people-to-people exchanges on August 20 2020. The India-Israel Cultural Agreement was signed by Sanjeev Singla, India’s Ambassador to Israel and Gabi Ashkenazi, Israel’s Foreign Minister.

India-Israel Cultural Agreement – Key Points

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  • The agreement outlines a three-year programme of cooperation to further strengthen their strategic bilateral relations.
  • The agreement will contribute to the development of their relations and to raising awareness, particularly among youth, of the history and culture of the people of both countries.
  • The programme of cooperation between India and Israel is based on the cultural agreement signed between them on May 18, 1993.
  • The agreement identified some areas of cultural ties which includes the exchange of culture and art experts, performing art festivals, plastic arts, photography and design, architecture, museums and exhibitions, music, dance, dance and theatre by enabling annual visits of experts, artists, producers and curators, organising literary fests and book fairs, promoting the translation of famous works in each other’s languages and encouraging cooperation in the protection of cultural heritage and archaeology with the help of Archaeological Survey of India and Israel Antiquities Authority (IIA).
  • Other areas includes student exchanges through scholarships, devising youth exchange programmes, encouraging participation of films and film-makers in each other’s international film festivals and encouraging sports-related interaction among youth.
  • Emphasis has been given on cooperation in cinema and audio-visual with both countries working towards a co-production that was agreed upon in 2018 when Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu visited India.
  • Holding film weeks of the other side’s country in their own country will be encouraged.
  • Both the countries will jointly promote the translation of contemporary prose, poetry and other literary works into the language of the other side. They will also support the participation of poets and writers in festivals and literary events.
  • Both sides agreed to encourage direct contacts between book publishers and national libraries.

25. Rajiv Kumar appointed as Election Commisioner of India

Rajiv Kumar, former finance secretary of India was appointed as the Election Commissioner of India on August 21, 2020. He succeeded Ashok Lavassa who joined the Asian Development Bank as its vice president.

About Rajiv Kumar

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Election Commisioner of India

Rajiv Kumar, is a retired 1984 IAS officer from Jharkhand cadre.He served as the finance secretary from September 1, 2017 to February 29, 2020. Kumar is currently the Chairperson of the Public Enterprises Selection Board(PESB). He holds an LLB, B.Sc degree and a Master of Public policy and Sustainability…..Read More

26. National Sports Awards 2020 Announced

The Ministry of Sports announced the National Sports Awards 2020 on August 22, 2020.

The Government of India bestows National Sports Awards every year to recognize and reward sports persons from the country for their excellence in their respective sports.

Here are the lists of athletes who will be conferred with the National Sports Awards 2020.

27. India’s longest ropeway inaugurated

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The Assam Government has opened the longest ropeway of India over the river Brahmaputra on 24 August 2020. The length of the ropeway is 1.8 km which connects Guwahati to North Guwahati. The project is accomplished at a cost of Rs 56 crore.

Daily Current Affairs - 24 August 2020

The ropeway comprises of two cabins each of which can carry 30 passengers and the operator at a time. It takes eight minutes for the cabin to reach the other end of the ropeway from the starting end. It is expected to boost tourism in the state as the journey over the smallest river island of the world , Umananda gives a beautiful as well as breathtaking view of the river Brahmaputra.

28. Businesses with annual turnover of up to Rs 40 lakhs exempted from GST

The Finance Ministry of India, on 24 August 2020 and on the first death anniversary of Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley exempted the Goods and Services Tax(GST) for businesses with annual turnover of up to Rs 40 lakhs.

The announcement has been made to remember Arun Jaitley and acknowledge the key role played by him to implement GST, which will go down in history as one of the most fundamental landmark reforms in Indian taxation.

29.Karnataka Government set to build transit homes for migrant workers

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Following the footsteps of Kerela Government the Karnataka Government is all set to build transit homes for migrant workers. The idea of building such home is aimed at providing better living conditions to the migrant workers.

The Karnataka Government plans to build four transit homes in Bengaluru. Each such homes will have a capacity to accommodate 3000 persons. The homes will have kitchen where the workers can cook their own food. A nominal maintenance fee will be charged from the workers. The concept is influenced by Kerela’s ‘Apna Ghar’ Project and each such project is expected to cost Rs 50 Crore.

30. RBI released it’s annual report 2019-20

The Reserve Bank of India released its annual report 2019-20 on August 25, 2020.

Key Points

Bank Fraud – RBI in its annual report noted that Bank frauds, in value terms involving an amount of Rs 1 lakh and above have more than doubled in 2019-20 period to Rs 1.85 trillion from Rs 71,543 crore in 2018-2019 period. In volume terms the total fraud cases have jumped to 8707 in 2019-20 from 6,799 in 2018-19.

Other incomes of RBI – The other income of RBI fell by more than half to Rs 40,339 crore from Rs 86,199 crore in the previous fiscal.

Total provisions rose to Rs 73,615 crore from Rs 64 crore in the previous fiscal.

The Central Bank in it’s report stated that private consumption has been hurt by lower incomes, job losses and behavioural restraints during the pandemic and would take quite sometime to mend and regain the pre-COVID -19 momentum.

Currency Notes – In the report RBI revealed that currency notes of ₹2,000 denomination were not printed in 2019 -20 and circulation of these notes have declined over the years. On the other hand the circulation of currency notes of ₹200 and ₹500 denominations has gone up substantially.

31. MY IAF Mobile Application launched by Indian Air Force

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The Indian Air Force launched MY IAF mobile application on August 24, 2020. The mobile application is launched to provide career related information for IAF job Aspirants.

The application, developed in association with Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) is listed in the Google Play Store for Android mobile phones. The app will act as a single digital platform interfacing the users with the details of selection procedure, training curriculum, pay and perks etc for both officers and airmen in the IAF. It will also provide glimpses into the history and stories of valour in th IAF.

32. ASTROSAT makes rare discovery

India’s first multi-wavelength satellite observatory has made a rare discovery by detecting an extreme ultraviolet (UV) light from a galaxy called AUDFs01, 9.3 billion light-years away from the Earth.

An international team of astronomers led by Dr Kanak Saha, associate professor of astronomy made the discovery and published it on ‘Nature Astronomy’.

About Astrosat

Astrosat is India’s first dedicated multi-wavelength space telescope launched on 28 September, 2015. The satellite was launched into a 650 km orbit inclined at an angle of 6 Deg to the equator using PSLV-C30 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota.

The Scientific Objectives of the AstroSat mission are –

  • To understand high energy processes in binary 7 star systems containing neutron stars and black holes;
  • To estimate magnetic fields of neutron stars;
  • To study star birth regions and high energy processes in star systems lying beyond our galaxy;
  • To detech new bright X-ray sources in the sky;
  • To perform a limited deep field survey of the Universe in the Ultraviolet region.

33. NITI Aayog released Export Preparedness Index(EPI) 2020

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NITI Aayog released the Export Preparedness Index(EPI) on 26 August, 2020.

Key Points

The Structure of the EPI includes four pillars – Policy, Business Ecosystem, Export Ecosystem and Export Performance. It also consist of 11 sub-pillars – Export Promotion Policy, Institutional Framework, Business Environment, Infrastructure, Transport Connectivity, Access to Finance, Export Infrastructure, Trade support, R&D Infrastructure, Export Diversification and Growth Orientation.

India has scored an average of 39 on the index. This shows that India holds tremendous potential towards transforming into an export-based super economy. Policy and Business Ecosystem are the two highest scoring pillars while Export Ecosystem is the least scoring pillar.

State level analysis in the EPI shows that Gujrat has topped the list with a strong display in various sub-pillars such as Export promotion Policy, Business Environment and Infrastructure. Other coastal states such as Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu occupied the second the third positions in the index. All the three states have performed consistently across all the pillars.

From the landlocked states, Rajasthan emerged as a top performer. The state has performed tremendously in all the pillars and sub-pillars except growth and orientation. Bihar and Jammu and Kashmir are some of the weaker states in this category

Uttarakhand and Delhi are the top-performing states amongst the Himalayan states and Union Territories respectively.

Analysing pillar wise, EPI reported that Maharashtra is the top performer in Policy Pillar while West Bengal is the least performer. In the Business Economy Pillar, Gujrat topped the list and Laskshadeep is the lowest scorer. Maharashtra again topped in the Export Ecosystem pillar and Lakshadeep was placed in the last spot. In Export Performance Pillar Mizoram topped the list and Chandigarh is the weakest state in this pillar.

34. AFSPA extended for six months in Assam

The Government of Assam has extended the Armed Forces(Special Powers) Act, 1958(AFSPA) in the state for six months with effect from August 28.

The AFSPA empowers security forces to conduct operations, arrest anyone anywhere without prior notice if they suspect anybody of indulging in unlawful or insurgent activity. The law has been imposed in Assam since November 1990. It is renewed every six months after assessing the situation of the state.

35. World Health Organisation declares Africa Polio Free

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The World Health Organisation declared Africa polio-free on August 25, 2020.

Nigeria is the final country in Africa to eradicate Polio. No African children were claimed by polio this year or last year or the year before. The last case of wild polio was reported in 2016 from Nigeria.

Now the diseease remains only in two countries of the world – Pakistan and Afganishtan.

36. Draft Policy Framed on data privacy under NDHM

The National Health Authority has framed a Draft Health Data Policy under National Digital Mission(NDHM) and released it on August 26, 2020. The NDHM was announced by PM Modi on the 74th Independece Day celebration.

The aim of the mission is to create a national digital health ecosystem which enables timely and efficient access to inclusive, affordable, and safe healthcare to all the citizens of the country.

Key Points

  • The National Digital Health Mission(NDHM) seeks to provide a unique health ID to all the citizens in order to map their medical history.
  • All necessary data privacy measures will be put in place to safeguard the confidentiality of sensitive health related information of individuals under NDHM.
  • Any personal data will be collected only on consent from individuals and they can revoke their consent to restrict any sharing of personal data.
  • Data collected across National Digital Health Ecosystem will be stored in the Central level, the State or Union Territory level and at the health facility level.

37. National GIS-enabled Land Bank System launched

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The Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal launched National GIS enabled Land Bank System for 6 states on August 27, 2020. Other states and Union Territories will be onboarded by December 2020.

The National GIS enabled Land Bank System will help investors to get real- time information about the availability of industrial land and resources. The system is being developed by integrating the Industrial Information System(IIS) with state Geographical Information System(GIS).

38. Mareika Lucas Rijneveld becomes the youngest author to win International Booker Prize

Mareika Lucas Rijneveld, a 29-year-old Dutch author becomes the youngest author to win International Booker Prize. Rijneveld won the prize of 50,000 pounds for his debut novel ‘The Discomfort of Evening‘.

The International Booker Prize for the year 2020 was announced on August 26, 2020. The award will be shared with the translator of the book Michele Hutchinson. He translated the book from Dutch to English.

About the Novel

The Novel ‘The Discomfort of Evening‘ starts with a young girl named Jas who was angry for not being allowed to accompany her brother to ice-skating. In a rage, she wishes death upon him and the wish comes true.

International Booker Prize

The International Booker Prize is an international literary award hosted in the United Kindom. It was first awarded in 2005 to Albanian writer Ismail Kadare. The award is given every year to a single book in English translation, with a 50,000 pounds prize for the winning title . The award is shared equally between author and translator.

39. Assam Government raised Upper age limit for State Government Jobs

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The State Cabinet of Assam decided to raise the upper age limit for State Government Jobs in Group III and Group IV categories from 38 years to 40 years on August 27, 2020.

Other decisions taken in State Cabinet –

  • The State cabinet has approved the Assam Skill Development University Bill. The approval of the bill has paved the way for setting up of a Skill University at Mangaldai, Darrang.
  • The cabinet has also approved the Assam Heritage Protection and Preservation Bill. The Bill proposes to provide protection, preservation, conservation, maintenance restoration, development and promotion of the State heritage sites and objects – other than those declared by or under the law made by Parliament to be of national importance or those covered under the ‘Assam Ancient Monuments and Records Act – 1959‘.
  • The amendment of Assam MSME Bill was approved in the same cabinet.
  • Orunodoi Scheme Approved – Under the scheme over 19 lakh households will get a sum of Rs 830 each every month. The scheme was announced by the Finance Minister of Assam Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma in his Budget speech 2020-21.

40. NITI Aayog launched the NDC-TIA

NITI Aayog virtually launched the India Component of the Nationally Determined Contributions – NDC- Transport Initiative for Asia – TIA on August 28, 2020.

NDC-TIA is a joint programme which is supported by the International Climate Initiative(IKI) of the German Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety.

The aim of the programme is to promote as a comprehensive approach to decarbonize transport in India, Vietnam and China. The project will support and regulate policies to promote electric vehicle charging infrastructure in India.

41. Centre issues new rules for Jammu and Kashmir Administration

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The Central Government has issued rules on August 28, 2020 for a smooth functioning of the Jammu and Kashmir administration which specifies the functions of Council of Ministers and Lieutenant Governor.

Key Points

  • The Lieutenant Governor(LG) shall, in respect of matters connected with “public order”,”police”,”All India Services” and Anti Corruption Bureau”, exercise his executive functions in his discretion under the Act.
  • The Lieutenant Governor(LG) on the advice of the chief minister shall allot the business of the government among the ministers by assigning one or more departments to a minister.
  • The council (of ministers) shall be collectively responsible for all the executive orders issued by any department in the name of the Lieutenant Governor(LG) and contracts made in the name of the president in connection with the administration of the Union Territory, whether such orders or contracts are authorised by a minister with respect to a matter pertaining to a department under his charge or as a result of discussions at a meeting of the council.
  • All communications received from the Centre, including those from the prime minister and other ministers, other than those of a routine or unimportant character, shall, as soon as possible after their receipt, be submitted by the secretary to the chief secretary, the minister in-charge, the chief minister and the LG for information.
  • Any matter, which is likely to bring the government of the Union Territory into a controversy with the Centre or a state government, shall, as soon as possible, be brought to the notice of the LG and the chief minister by the secretary concerned through the chief secretary.
  • In case of a difference of opinion between the LG and a minister with regard to any matter, the former shall endeavour by discussion within two weeks from the date of such disagreement to settle any point on which the difference of opinion has arisen.
  • Should the difference of opinion persist, the LG may direct that the matter be referred to the council, which shall consider it at its next scheduled meeting and convey its decision, but not later than 15 days from the date of such reference.
  • In case no such decision is received within 15 days from the date of such reference, the LG’s decision shall be deemed to have been accepted by the council of ministers.
  • In case of a difference of opinion between the LG and the council with regard to any matter, the former shall refer it to the Centre for the decision of the president and shall act according to that decision.

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