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Current Affairs 19th March 2020

1. HSBC appoints Noel Quinn as Chief Executive Officer
  • HSBC = Hong Kong & Shanghai Banking Corporation
  • Quinn joined HSBC in 1987.
  • HSBC Headquarters : London, United Kingdom.
2. Agreement between India and Brunei for Exchange of Information notified
  • Agreement signed for the exchange of information & assistance in collection with respect of taxes
  • It will help to curb tax evasion & tax avoidance.
  • Brunei Capital : Bandar Seri Begawan,
  • Currency : Brunei dollar.
3. US Africa Command cancels annual military exercise African Lion
  • Became the latest casualty of the global coronavirus pandemic with this year’s event being cancelled,
  • Command called off the entire event and began planning for African Lion 21.
  • Morocco, Tunisia and Senegal were the host cities.
4. Salesforce names former SBI chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya as India CEO
  • She was the 1st woman to lead the more than 200-year-old SBI.
  • Move comes as the Salesforce becomes aggressive in India, a market that is gradually adopting digital technologies.
  • Arundhati Bhattacharya retired from SBI in 2017.
5. ISRO designs Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System
  • ISRO has designed NavIC messaging system and developed a ‘NavIC receiver’.
  • NavIC = Navigation with Indian Constellation
  • Indian National Centre for Ocean Information System (INCOIS) is using this messaging system to broadcast emergency warning messages.
  • It also broadcasts information of Potential Fishing Zone (PFZ).
6. GMR Hyderabad International Airport goes Single-Use Plastic-free
  • From 1 March 2020 and use of such material has been imposed across the airport.
  • This initiative is in line with the government’s campaign to phase out SUP by 2022.
  • They are also encouraging eco-friendly products like jute bags.
7. AIMRI gets accreditation as a certification body
  • AIMRI = Aries International Maritime Research Institute
  • Located in Sharjah, UAE
  • AIMRI Has received accreditation from Emirates International Accreditation Centre, for Quality Management System (ISO 9001:2015) Audits and certification.
  • EIAC = Emirates International Accreditation Centre.
8. Power Generation from Conventional Sources Registered Annual Growth of 5.45% in 2018-19
  • From 1.17 billion units in 2015-16 to 1.38 BU in 2018-19.
  • Power generation from hydro sources has registered a compound annual growth rate of 3.3%.
  • HPO will be a separate entity in new projects.
9. Cumulative renewable energy capacity of 132.15 GW installed in the country: R.K. Singh
  • As part of the Paris Accord on Climate Change, India has installed at least 40% of its total electricity generation capacity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030.
  • As on 29.2.2020, a cumulative renewable energy capacity of 132.15 GW had been installed.
  • Minister of State for Power & New & Renewable Energy : RK Singh.
10. More than Rs 20,000 Cr of loans sanctioned under ‘Stand Up India Scheme’ since inception
  • Over 91,000 accounts up to 10.03.2020.
  • The scheme facilitates bank loans between Rs. 10 lakh-Rs. 1 Crores to at least one SC/ ST borrower & at least one-woman borrower.
  • Stand Up India Scheme was launched on 5th April 2016.
11. CSIR announces innovation awards for school children
  • CSIR = Council of Scientific & Industrial Research
  • CSIR has announced Innovation Awards for School Children (CIASC)
  • To support their scientific temperament and to encourage innovative spirit among them.
  • Proposals can be submitted by a student or a group of students.
  • Eligibility- Students of up to Class 12 & below 18 years of age.
12. Bihar govt declares Coronavirus as epidemic
  • Govt has given special powers to deal with the situation.
  • If a suspected case of COVID-19 refuses isolation, the officers authorized will have powers to forcefully admit or isolate such person for a period of 14 days.
  • 311 suspected cases have been reported so far in the state.
13. Bangladesh celebrates 100th birth anniversary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman on 17 March
  • Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was the founder President of Bangladesh.
  • The day marks the beginning of the yearlong celebration of the birth centenary named ‘Mujib Barsho’ .
  • He led the movement against the oppressive Pakistani rulers
  • Bangladesh PM : Sheikh Hasina
14. Health Ministry placed Draft National Policy for Rare Diseases in its website
  • A component of rare diseases has been included in the draft.
  • Rashtriya Arogya Nidhi was established under Societies Registration Act, 1860.
  • It was made effective from 1 January 2019.
15. Ministry of Culture establishes institute to promote Buddhist studies, art, and Culture
  • Ministry of Culture has established Central Institute of Himalayan Culture Studies (CIHCS) at Dahung, Arunachal Pradesh.
  • The main objective of CIHCS is to preserve ancient Buddhist manuscripts and to promote research in different aspects of Buddhism.
  • Digitizing ancient Buddhist text is another aim.
16.   1.59 lakh SSAs covered with at least one bank branch under Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana
  • All villages were mapped by banks into 1.59 lakh Sub-Service Areas
  • With one SSA catering to 1,000 to 1,500 households.
  • This was stated by Anurag Singh Thakur, Minister of State for Finance & Corporate Affairs.
  • 0.33 lakh SSAs have been covered with bank branches.
17. Permanent commission to women in Indian Navy: SC
  • Justice DY Chandrachud directed to grant permanent commission to serving women officers in Navy within 3 months with increments.
  • A permanent commission entitles an officer to serve in the Navy till he retires unlike SSC, which is currently for 10 years.
  • Short Service Commission can be extended by four more years.
18. The winning innovations stand to win a grant of Rs 10 lakh
  • Microsoft India and NASSCOM Foundation launched the Innovate for Accessible India campaign
  • Aim to empower people with disabilities with the technology and tools required.
  • For better integration into society and admittance to equal opportunities.
  • The winning innovations stand to win a grant of Rs 10 lakh.
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