Current affairs is one of the inevitable and compulsive topic in almost every competitive examinations. It is inevitable for an aspirant to get updated on daily current affairs happening around the world. Daily newspaper reading and follow-ups are necessary for mastering these current affairs section. In this article, we have provided the top weekly current affairs from March 16 to March 22, 2020 which will help all aspirants to improve scores in their competitive examination like PSC, SSC, RRB and Banking.
Top Weekly Current Affairs for all Competitive Exams 2020 March 16 to 22
Here are the list of top current affairs of the week March 16 to 22, 2020 which will be helpful for all competitive examinations like PSC, SSC, RRB, Banking etc.
Parliament passed the Vivad Se Vishwas Bill for settlement of Direct Tax disputes
- Parliament passed the Vivad Se Vishwas Bill for settlement of Direct Tax disputes on 13 March 2020.
- The Bill was introduced in Lok Sabha (the lower house) by the Minister of Finance Nirmala Sitharaman on 5 February 2020. Lok Sabha passed it on 4 March 2020.
- The Bill aims to extend the scope to cover litigation pending in various debt recovery tribunals (DRTs).
- It will provide an opportunity to settle direct tax disputes within the current financial year by waiving interest and penalty on their pending taxes.
- The Direct Tax Vivad Se Vishwas Bill provides a method for the resolution of pending tax disputes that are related to income tax and corporation tax that involve Rs.9.32 lakh crore.
World Consumer Rights day is observed on 15 March
- The consumer movement marks 15 March with World Consumer Rights Day every year. The day aims to raise global awareness about consumer rights and needs.
- The day aims to demand that the rights of all consumers are respected and protected, and to protest against market abuses and social injustices which undermine those rights.
- The observation of World Consumer Rights Day was inspired by President John F Kennedy. He sent a special message to the US Congress on 15 March 1962, where he formally addressed the issue of consumer rights.
- He was the first world leader to do so. The consumer movement was first marked in 1983. The day aims to mobilize action on important issues and campaigns.
Union Government implements POSHAN Abhiyaan
- The Government of India is implementing POSHAN Abhiyaan across the country to address the problem of malnutrition.
- The campaign aims to reduce malnutrition in the country. The abhiyaan will be implemented in a phased manner through a life cycle approach.
- It also aims to reduce combat under-nutrition, anemia among young children, women and adolescent girls and reduce low birth weight.
- POSHAN (Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition) Abhiyaan or National Nutrition Mission is the Government of India’s flagship programme to improve nutritional outcomes for children, pregnant women, and lactating mothers.
UNCTAD: India among 15 countries economically affected due to Corona virus
- The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development recently released a report on the effect of COVID-19 on the global economy. According to the report, India was ranked 10th.
- The report says that the slow down in the manufacturing sector of China due to the virus, will affect 50 billion USD trade all over the world hitting global value chains greatly.
- Though India will receive the 10th largest economic blow in the world due to the virus, its economic slow-down will be low as compared to the other economies.
- In India, the chemical sector is to receive heavy blow followed by textiles, automotive sector, electrical machinery, leather products and metal products.
India pledged USD 10 million toward a Covid-19 emergency fund
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosted a video-conference meet of leaders of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) member nations to tackle the novel coronavirus (Covid-19).
- The conference witnessed the participation of leaders of all SAARC countries.PM Modi proposed for Covid-19 emergency fund.
- India pledged $10 million toward a Covid-19 emergency fund and planned to put together a rapid response team of doctors and specialists for SAARC nations.
- India suggested Integrated Disease Surveillance Portal (IDSP) that is currently being used to detect infected patients and contact tracing.
Tai Tzu Ying won 2020 All England Badminton Championships
- Taiwan’s Tai Tzu Ying won the third women’s singles title in four years at the Yonex All England Badminton Championships 2020 in Birmingham, England. She defeated the defending champion, Chen Yu Fei, on 15 March.
- Also, Viktor Axelsen won the All England title in the men’s singles championship. He secured Denmark’s first win in the event since Peter Gade’s triumph in 1999.
- Men’s Singles: Viktor Axelsen,Women’s Singles: Taipei Tai Tzu-Ying.
- Men’s Doubles: Hiroyuki Endo, Yuta Watanabe,Women’s Doubles: Yuki Fukushima, Sayaka Hirota.
MoCA flagged off first-ever Indore-Kishangarh flight under UDAN
- The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) flagged off the first-ever thrice-weekly flight from Indore (Madhya Pradesh) to Kishangarh (Ajmer, Rajasthan) on 16 March Under the UDAN scheme of Government of India.
- The tender for the Indore-Kishangarh route during the UDAN 3 bidding process was awarded to Star Air. The aim is to connect the unconnected regions.
- The time taken for the people to reach Kishangarh from Indore by road is more than 10 hours. The flight operations on this route will make the travel easy for the people and visit the famous Nine Planets Temple, Pushkar Lake, Phool Mahal Palace, Roopangarh Fort, Ajmer Sharif Dargah, etc.
- Kishangarh is famously known as the ‘Marble City of India.’ It is a big market for red chilies.The people can now travel between Belagavi and Kishangarh in just 3 hours.
PM Narendra Modi to participate 100th birth Anniversary celebrations of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi is to participate in the 100th birth Anniversary celebrations of ‘Jatir Pita’ Bangabandhu, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, in Bangladesh on 17 March (through video message).
- Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is popularly known as Bangabandhu by the people of Bangladesh. He was born on 17 March 1920 at Tungipara, Bengal Presidency, British India.
- He was a leading figure of the Awami League, which was founded as an East Pakistan-based political party in Pakistan in 1949.
- He served as the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, and then as the President of Bangladesh. He was assassinated on 15 August 1975.
First human trial of a vaccine to protect against COVID-19 began in the US
- The first human trial of a vaccine against coronavirus (COVID-19) began at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI) in Seattle, the US.
- The vaccine is called mRNA-1273. The vaccine has shown promise in animal models.It was developed by NIAID scientists and their collaborators at the biotechnology company Moderna, Inc., based in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
- A 43-year-old woman from Seattle received the first dose. The vaccine contains a harmless genetic code copied from the virus that causes the disease. It cannot cause COVID-19.
- The trial will enroll 45 healthy adult volunteers over approximately six weeks.
INST Scientists develops calcium-modified carboxymethyl-starch to stop rapid blood loss
- Scientists from the Institute of Nano Science and Technology (INST) have developed a starch-based ‘hemostat’ material, named calcium-modified carboxymethyl-starch, that can stop life-threatening bleeding after a serious injury.
- The Hemostat material is a biodegradable microparticle. It concentrates the natural clotting factors in blood by physically absorbing excess fluid.
- The microparticles were prepared by modifying some of the chemical hydroxyl groups on starch to carboxymethyl groups and incorporating the beneficial calcium ions.
- This combination increases the aggregation of red blood cells (RBCs) and platelets and speeds up the activation to generate the fibrin protein network that forms a stable blood clot.
Ministry of Culture established institute to promote Buddhist studies, art, and Culture
- The Ministry of Culture has established an institute named Central Institute of Himalayan Culture Studies (CIHCS) at Dahung, Arunachal Pradesh.
- The main objective of CIHCS is to preserve ancient Buddhist manuscripts, to promote research in different aspects of Buddhism, digitize ancient Buddhist text preserved in the languages of Pali, Sanskrit, Tibetan, Chinese, Japanese, and other Asian languages through the system of a modern university.
- The move by the government is to provide education in Buddhist philosophies, Culture, and Art.
- The Ministry took over three universities, namely Nava Nalanda Mahavihara, Nalanda (NNM), Bihar; Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies (CIHTS), Sarnath, Varanasi; Central Institute of Buddhist Studies (CIBS), Leh, UT of Ladakh. These 3 universities were granted Deemed University Status by UGC.
NBRI develops pest-resistant variety of cotton against white flies
- National Botanical Research Institute (NBRI), Lucknow has developed a pest-resistant variety of cotton against whiteflies.The field test trials will begin from April to October at the Faridkot Center of Punjab Agriculture University, Ludhiana.
- Whiteflies are one of the top devastating pests in the world that can damage more than 2000 plant species. It also functions as vectors for some 200-plant viruses.
- Cotton is one of the worst-hit crops by the Whiteflies. In the year 2015, two-third of the cotton crop was destroyed by the pest in Punjab.Researchers explored 250 plants to develop the pest-resistant variety from lower plant biodiversity to identify novel protein molecules that are toxic to whitefly.
- During the trial, the leaves were extracted from all the plants. They were prepared separately. Then, the whiteflies were led to feed on a total of 250 plants. It was observed that the leaf extract of the edible fern Tectaria macrodonta caused toxicity to the whitefly.
Ordnance Factory Day was observed on 18 March
- The Ordnance Factory Day is observed on 18 March. The Ordnance Factories are observing their 219th foundation day this year.
- The day marks the establishment of the first Ordnance Factory on 18 March 1801. The first factory is known as the ‘Gun and Shell Factory’ at Cossipore in Kolkata.
- The Ordnance Factories are a conglomerate of 41 ordnance factories. It functions under the aegis of its corporate headquarters Ordnance Factory Board (OFB), in Kolkata.
- In 1712, the Dutch Ostend Company’s Gun Powder Factory at Ichhapur was established. It came with a new effect on 2 April 1979. It is headquartered at Kolkata, West Bengal.
- The Indian Ordnance Factories organization is a family of 41 Ordnance Factories. It possesses 200 years of experience in defence production.
Google appointed Karan Bajwa as MD of Google Cloud in India
- Google appointed Karan Bajwa as Managing Director (MD) of Google Cloud in India.
- He will advise Google Cloud’s work with the local developer ecosystem and India-based Global System Integrators (GSIs). Google Cloud’s field sales, partner, and customer engineering organizations in India will report to Bajwa.
- He will be responsible for driving all revenue and go-to-market operations for Google Cloud’s extensive solution portfolio that includes Google Cloud Platform and G Suite in the country.
- Karan Bajwa is a senior leader with over three decades of leadership experience. He recently served as MD for India and South Asia for IBM.
Former CJI Ranjan Gogoi took oath as a member of Rajya Sabha
- Former Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi took oath as a member of Rajya Sabha on 19 March 2020.
- He was nominated by President Ram Nath Kovind. His nomination to the upper house was made against the vacancy created due to the retirement of senior lawyer KTS Tulsi.
- Ranjan Gogoi retired on 17 November 2019. He is the first person from the northeast region to reach the top of the judiciary. He served as the Judge of Gauhati High Court from 28 February 2001 to 8 September 2010.
- He then served as the Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court on 12 February 2011. In 2012, he served as the Judge of the Supreme Court of India. On 3 October 2018, he replaced Justice Dipak Misra as CJI.
International Energy Agency: India the third largest producer of Electricity
- On March 19, 2020, the Ministry of Power quoted the International Energy Agency ranking in the Parliament.
- According to the ranking, India is the third largest producer of electricity in the world.Also, it is ranked 106th in terms of per capita consumption.
- India has now become power surplus from power deficit. Therefore, it is currently focusing on supply of quality power to consumers.
- Though India has surplus power, the country lacks adequate infrastructure. Still around 136 million Indians use traditional fuels such as agricultural waste, firewood, dry animal dung fuel for cooking and heating needs.
- This affects their health badly. According to WHO, more than 300,000 to 400,000 people in India die due to indoor air pollution.
International Day of Happiness is celebrated on 20 March
- International Day of Happiness is celebrated on 20 March. The day aims to inspire and advance the global happiness movement.
- The campaign theme for the year 2020 is ‘Happiness For All, Together.’ The campaign is a global celebration to mark the United Nations International Day of Happiness.
- International Happiness Day was founded and conceptualised by Jayme Illien, the CEO of the United Nations New World Order project, in 2006.
- The main idea behind celebrating the day is to establish happiness as a fundamental human right among the masses. It was one of the goals of the United Nations (UN) to celebrate the happiness, freedom, and well-being of mankind on earth.
World Sparrow Day is observed on 20 March
- World Sparrow Day is observed on 20th March. It is observed every year.
- The day aims to raise awareness about the importance of sparrows in the ecosystem. It also conveys the message of conservation of sparrows that are disappearing faster than other common birds.
- The theme for the 2020 World Sparrow Day is ‘I Love Sparrow.’ The day aims to teach the public about the threat of polluted urban environments and non-caring humans to the house sparrow population and to other common bird species.
- The World Sparrow Day was initiated by the founder of The Nature Forever Society, Mohammed Dilawar. He also started many projects, including the BiodiverSity Photo Competition, the annual Sparrow Awards, Project Save Our Sparrows, and the Common Bird Monitoring of India program.
The Indian Mountaineer Satyarup Siddhanta has entered ‘Limca Book of Records’.
- “Satyarup Siddhanta”, an Indian Mountaineer enters ‘Limca Book of Records’ conquering highest volcanoes.
- He has set the record of becoming the first Indian to climb the highest volcanoes in the world of all the 7 continents.The mountaineer achieved the record of climbing all the highest summits in the world in 7 continents in January 2019.
- He already holds the Guinness Book of World Records, India Book of Records, Asia Book of Records, British Book of records and Champion Book of Records.
- The Limca Book of Records is considered second to the World Guinness Book of Records. It consists of achievements made by Indians inside India and also in other countries.
CBSE launches toll-free helpline on coronavirus safeguards for students
- The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has launched a toll-free helpline on coronavirus safeguards for students.
- The facility is available on helpline number 1800118004 from 8 am to 8 pm, initially up to 31st March.
- The dedicated coronavirus safeguard tele-counseling service will be provided by trained counselors who will deal with students and parents for preventive interventions, reducing transmission and counsel on first-aid to stop corona spread.
- They will assist students in engaging in useful and productive activities while at home. The board has postponed all exams till March 31, and evaluation work has also been suspended. Central Board of Secondary Education founded in 1962.
International Day of Forests observed on 21 March
- The United Nations celebrates International Day of Forest on March 21. The Day has been celebrated since 2012. To increase awareness and importance of forests.
- Theme: Forests and Biodiversity.
- March 21 has chosen to mark the international day of forests as it is the Vernal Equinox in the northern hemisphere and autumnal equinox.
- The organizers are the United Nations Forum on Forests and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), in collaboration with Governments, the Collaborative Partnership on Forests and other relevant organizations in the field.
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