Latest Current Affairs Daily Update

02nd, 03rd & 04th Dec 2020 Current Affairs Headlines

National Headlines

Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar launches “Sahakar Pragya” initiative

The Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar recently launched a new initiative called Sahakar Pragya. Sahakar Pragya is an initiative of National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC), to help in capacity development of the cooperative sector in India, through the training programme.

Under this initiative, 45 new training modules have been developed for the farmers and would be imparted to primary cooperative societies in rural areas of the country by NCDC.

The training modules aim to impart knowledge and organisational skills and attempt to prepare the primary cooperative societies across the country to be able to play a big role in the government’s AtmaNirbhar Bharat initiative.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • Narendra Singh Tomar is the Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Rural Development, Panchayat Raj and Food Processing Industries.

Arjun Munda e-launches “Virtual Aadi Mahotsav-Madhya Pradesh”

The Union Minister for Tribal Affairs, Arjun Munda has launched the first-ever virtual edition of Aadi Mahotsav – Madhya Pradesh.

The 10-day long festival will begin from December 1, 2020. It is being hosted on the Tribes India website – www.tribesindia.com. The highlights of the virtual launch included a virtual tour of the artisans’ workplace and glimpses of the tribal dance and music from Madhya Pradesh.

The main focus of the first virtual Aadi Mahotsav is on the tribal craft and culture of Madhya Pradesh. The next focus state of the programme would be Gujarat ( from 11th December 2020), followed by West Bengal from the 21st December 2020.

India invites UK’s Johnson as 2021 Republic Day chief guest

United Kingdom Prime Minister, Boris Johnson is expected to be the chief guest at 2021 Republic day with Prime Minister Narendra Modi formally inviting him. Johnson, on his part, has invited PM Modi to the G-7 summit in the United Kingdom next year. The last British prime minister at the Republic Day parade was John Major in 1993.

Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat inaugurates Suryadhar Lake

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat has inaugurated the Suryadhar lake at Doiwala, Dehradun. The Suryadhar lake is 550 meters long, 28 meters wide and 10 meters deep with a capacity of 77,000 cubic meters.

Besides fulfilling the drinking water and irrigational needs of 18-20 villages, the lake will recharge the water resources in the area and help build a healthy eco-system that will attract migratory birds. The state government’s plans to organize a water sports festival at the lake either by Makar Sankranti or Basant Panchami next year to showcase the beauty of its surrounding environs.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • Uttarakhand Chief Minister: Trivendra Singh Rawat.
  • Governor of Uttarakhand: Baby Rani Maurya.

West Bengal launches massive ‘Duare Sarkar’ outreach campaign

West Bengal Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee has launched a massive campaign titled ‘Duare Sarkar’ (government at doorsteps) to aware people about the 11 state-run welfare schemes and help them avail its benefits. The two-month-long outreach programme has been launched keeping in view the 2021 state assembly elections which are due in April-May.

The campaign will continue from December 1, 2020, to January 30, 2020, in four phases, with slogan ‘jar jekhane darkar, asche apnar duare sarkar’ (government will be at your doorsteps whenever you need it). The 11 schemes will be made available to the beneficiaries through camps set up for the purpose.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • Chief Minister of West Bengal: Mamata Banerjee; Governor: Jagdeep Dhankhar.

Karnataka’s 1st 11.5 megawatt power plant being set up at Bidadi

In Karnataka, Chief Minister, BS Yediyurappa laid the foundation stone for an 11.5-megawatt power plant based on municipal waste in Bidadi, Bengaluru. It is first of its kind power plant in the state being set up by the Karnataka Power Corporation Limited (KPCL) and will help in converting 600 tonnes of municipal waste into 11.5-megawatt energy.

This power plant will add 80.59 million units of power to the existing power grid. The power plant project is being constructed at a cost of Rs. 260 crore and is likely to be operational by 2022.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • Chief Minister of Karnataka: B.S. Yediyurappa; Governor: Vajubhai Vala.

International Headlines

New Zealand has declared a “climate emergency” 

New Zealand has declared a “climate emergency” and promised to make its public sector carbon neutral by 2025. New Zealand now joins 32 other countries that have declared a climate emergency. They include Japan, Canada, France and the United Kingdom.

Prime Minister of  New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern told legislators that the climate emergency declaration was “an acknowledgement of the next generation – an acknowledgement of the burden that they will carry if we do not get this right and do not take action now”.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • Prime minister of New Zealand: Jacinda Ardern.
  • Capital of New Zealand: Wellington.
  • The currency of New Zealand: New Zealand dollar.

Defence Headlines

Indian Army successfully testfires Anti-Ship version of BrahMos missile

India successfully test-fired the anti-ship version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands territory. 

The test was conducted as part of the ongoing trials being conducted by the Indian Navy. The DRDO-developed BrahMos supersonic cruise missile with a strike range of 300 Km was launched from Indian Navy’s INS Ranvijay and it successfully hit its target ship near the Car Nicobar Islands in the Bay of Bengal.


Sports Headlines

Lewis Hamilton wins Bahrain Grand Prix 2020

Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes-Great Britain) has won the 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix at Bahrain International Circuit, Bahrain. The race was the fifteenth round of the 2020 Formula One World Championship. This is the 11th victory for Hamilton of the season, and 95th F1 win of his career.

Also, Hamilton now holds the records for the most wins (95), in Formula One history. Red Bull Racing teammates Max Verstappen (Netherlands) and Alexander Albon (Thailand) were second and third respectively.

Virat Kohli fastest to 12000 runs in ODI cricket

Virat Kohli became the fastest to reach 12,000 runs in One-day International cricket. Kohli breached the mark in the third ODI against Australia in Canberra. He got to the milestone in his 242nd inning thus bettering the previous record set by Sachin Tendulkar, who got his 12000th run in his 300th inning.

Kohli is the second-highest scorer for India in ODIs behind Tendulkar’s 18,426 from 463 ODIs. The India captain also holds the record for the fastest batsman (in terms of innings) to 10,000 and 11,000 runs in ODIs. Kohli reached 11,000 runs in 222 innings and became the fastest to breach the 10000-run mark by doing so in his 205th inning.


Appointments

Utpal Kumar Singh Appointed as Secretary-General of Lok Sabha

Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla has appointed senior IAS officer Utpal Kumar Singh as Secretary-General of the Lok Sabha and Lok Sabha Secretariat. His appointment will come into effect from December 1, 2020. He will succeed incumbent Snehlata Shrivastava.

Mr Singh is a 1986 batch IAS officer of Uttrakhand Cadre and has been appointed as Secretary-General of the Lok Sabha in the rank and status of Cabinet Secretary.

IAS officer Varsha Joshi named Chairperson of NDDB

The Government of India has appointed IAS officer Varsha Joshi as the new Chairperson of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB). She is presently served as Joint Secretary (CDD), Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Government of India.

With incumbent Dilip Rath’s tenure as Chairman of NDDB ends on November 30, 2020, Joshi’s appointment is made effective from December 1, 2020, until further orders.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • National Dairy Development Board Founded: 16 July 1965.
  • National Dairy Development Board Headquarters: Anand, Gujarat.

Bata names Sandeep Kataria as global CEO

Footwear major Bata Shoe Organization has appointed Sandeep Kataria as the new global Chief Executive Officer (CEO). He is the first Indian to be appointed to the global role of Bata (Headquarter-Lausanne, Switzerland). He takes over from Alexis Nasard, who has stepped down after almost five years in the role.

Before this, Kataria was the CEO of Bata India since 2017. Under Kataria, Bata India managed to transform into the largest footwear retailer in India within a relatively short span.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • Bata Headquarters: Lausanne, Switzerland.
  • Bata Founded: 24 August 1894.

Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhary becomes new Director General of BRO

Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhary has been appointed as the 27th Director General of Border Roads Organisation (BRO). His appointment is effective from 1st December 2020. Lt Gen Chaudhary succeeds Lt Gen Harpal Singh who has been appointed as the new Engineer-in-Chief of the Indian Army. The BRO is responsible for construction and maintenance of all border roads including those along the frontiers with China and Pakistan.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • BRO Headquarters: New Delhi.
  • BRO Founder: Jawaharlal Nehru.

Aggrement Headlines

ADB sign $132.8 million loan agreement for Meghalaya’s Power supply

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India have signed a USD 132.8 million loan agreement for Meghalaya Power Distribution Sector Improvement Project. The project aims to strengthen and modernize the distribution network and improve the quality of power supplied to households, industries, and businesses in the northeastern state of Meghalaya.

This project supports Meghalaya’s ‘24×7 Power for All’ initiative and will help the State reduce its high technical and commercial losses through network strengthening, metering and billing efficiency improvements.

The project will construct 23 substations; renovate and modernise 45 substations, including the addition of control room equipment and protection systems; and install and upgrade 2,214 km of distribution lines and associated facilities covering three out of the six circles in the State. The installation of smart meters will benefit about 180,000 households.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • Meghalaya Capital: Shillong.
  • Meghalaya Governor: Satya Pal Malik.
  • Meghalaya Chief minister: Conrad Sangma.

ADB and India sign $50 million loan agreement for West Bengal

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India have inked $50 million policy-based loan agreement to improve financial management procedures and operational efficiencies in West Bengal. 

Titled as the ‘West Bengal Public Finance Management Investment Programme’, the project will help to achieve more fiscal savings, promote informed decision making, and improve service delivery in the state.

A centre for fiscal policy and public finance will be established to deepen the capacity of the state government officials on public finance management while developing a web-based grievance redress system for transport corporations and urban local bodies will provide a credible citizen-government interface.

Useful notes for all competitive exams: 

  • President of ADB: Masatsugu Asakawa; Headquarters: Manila, Philippines.

Rank and Reports

US Air Quality Index: Lahore is world’s most polluted city

Lahore, the cultural capital Pakistan, has been ranked as the world’s most polluted city, according to air pollution data released by the US Air Quality Index (AQI). Lahore reported a particulate matter (PM) rating of 423. New Delhi stood second with a PM of 229, while Nepal’s capital Kathmandu ranked the third with a PM of 178.

The Air Quality Index (AQI) is released by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to give people an idea of whether it’s safe to breathe the air.

AQI is based on the levels of five major pollutants regulated by the EPA: ground-level ozone, particulate matter (PM2.5), carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide.

AQI measures air quality by placing it on a scale of 0-500, where air quality is regarded as satisfactory if the AQI is under 50.

India ranked 8th in Global Terrorism Index 2020

In the Global Terrorism Index (GTI) 2020, India has been ranked at 8th spot globally in the list of countries most affected by terrorism in 2019. The GTI score of India is 7.353 out of 10. India recorded 277 Deaths, 439 Injuries & 558 Incidents due to Terrorism in 2019.

Regarding India:

  • Jammu and Kashmir was the most affected Region due to terrorism, it reported 165 attacks and 103 deaths. The three most active groups in Kashmir was Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), Hizbul Mujahideen & Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).
  • Chhattisgarh was the second most affected region in India with 85 attacks and 53 deaths all from Maoist Extremists.

Countries Most Affected by Terrorism:

  • With a score of 9.592, Afghanistan has topped the index as the worst terror impacted nation among the 163 countries.
  • It is followed by Iraq (8.682) and Nigeria (8.314) at second and third place respectively.

Countries Least Affected by Terrorism:

  • Qatar (0.014) took the 133rd Rank followed by Uzbekistan (0.010) in the 134th Rank and around 29 Countries (score of 0.000) took the 135th Rank which means they are Least Affected Countries or Face No Impact due to Terrorism.

Obituary

MDH owner ‘Mahashay’ Dharampal Gulati passes away

The owner of MDH Masala, Dharampal Gulati passed away. He was born in 1923 in Sialkot, Pakistan. He was fondly called ‘dalaji’ and ‘Mahashayji’. A school dropout, Dharampal Gulati joined his father’s spice business in the early days. Back in 2019, the government honoured him with Padma Bhushan, the third-highest civilian award in the country.

Senegal World Cup footballer Papa Bouba Diop passes away

Senegal’s professional footballer, Papa Bouba Diop, who helped the country win the FIFA World Cup match in 2002, has passed away. He was of the age of 42.

His goal helped Senegal secure historic 1–0 win over the then-world champions France in the opening match of the 2002 FIFA World Cup, and Senegal’s first-ever match at the FIFA World Cup. Diop has won 63 caps for Senegal.


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