Daily Current Affairs 18th & 19th October, 2020

Daily Current Affairs 18 & 19 October 2020 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.

NATIONAL NEWS

India’s Life Expectancy Up by a Decade Since 1990, Highest in Kerala; Pollution Poses High Risk: Lancet
India has gained more than a decade of life expectancy since 1990, but there are wide inequalities between states, according to a new study which assessed more than 286 causes of death and 369 diseases and injuries in more than 200 countries and territories across the world.

  • The study, published in the Lancet journal, noted that life expectancy in India has risen from 59.6 years in 1990 to 70.8 years in 2019, ranging from 77.3 years in Kerala to 66.9 years in Uttar Pradesh.
  • In 2019, the research noted that the top five risk factors for death in India were air pollution (contributing to an estimated 1.67 million deaths), high blood pressure (1.47 million), tobacco use (1.23 million), poor diet (1.18 million), and high blood sugar (1.12 million). The scientists said several of the risk factors and NCDs highlighted by the study, including obesity and diabetes are associated with increased risk of serious illness and death from COVID-19.

UP CM Launches Hath Dhona, Roke Corona’ On Global Handwashing Day
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister,Yogi Adityanath emphasised upon the sanitation practice of hand washing while launching a ‘Hath dhona, Roke corona’ campaign on the occasion of the Global Handwashing Day.

  • Exuding confidence that all the people would connect with the help of programmes launched under the campaign and will make personal hygiene a part of their daily routine, the chief minister said washing hand is important in breaking the chain of corona infection.
  • To mark the day, special handwashing programs were organised in all the districts of the state from 10 am to 12 noon. These programs were held maintaining necessary social distancing norms.


INTERNATIONAL NEWS

India Ranks 94 Among 107 Countries in Global Hunger Index 2020
India ranked 94 among 107 countries in the Global Hunger Index (GHI) 2020 and continues to be in the “serious” hunger category, though it has made some progress, particularly since the enactment of National Food Security Act. Last year, India’s rank was 102 out of 117 countries.

  • The Global Hunger Index data showed that 14 per cent of India’s population was undernourished. Besides, the country recorded a 37.4 per cent stunting rate among children under five and a wasting rate of 17.3 per cent. The under-five mortality rate stood at 3.7 per cent.
  • 17 nations, including China, Belarus, Ukraine, Turkey, Cuba and Kuwait, bagged the top rank with GHI scores of less than five.
  • On the other hand, the neighbouring Bangladesh, Myanmar and Pakistan ranked higher than India in this year’s hunger index. While Bangladesh ranked 75, Myanmar and Pakistan are in the 78th and 88th position.

India, Netherlands collaborate for e-health initiative
India and the Netherlands unveiled plans for a joint thrust in the e-health sector, with the aim of providing digital health facilities and security to every Indian.

  • The alliance was announced at a web-based workshop hosted by management consultancy firm Primus Partners.
  • Part of India’s ambitious National Digital Health Mission (NDHM), this cooperative initiative will see the two countries work closely to create capacities and put in place the requisite technology backbone to enable this revolutionary initiative.

Indian and Sri Lankan navies begin their annual exercise SLINEX 
The eighth edition of the annual Indian Navy (IN) – Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) bilateral maritime exercise SLINEX-20 from October 19 to 21 begins at Trincomalee coast in Sri Lanka.

  • SLINEX-20 aims to enhance inter-operability, improve mutual understanding and exchange best practices and procedures for multi-faceted maritime operations between both navies.


BANKING & FINANCE

Tata Motors partners with HDFC Bank for financing of passenger vehicles
Tata Motors said it has parterned with HDFC Bank for financing of its passenger vehicles. Through the partnership, the company said it has introduced two new schemes’ Gradual Step Up Scheme’ and ‘TML Flexi Drive Scheme’ with an eye on making its products more accessible and driving up sales in the festive season. The schemes will be available till the end of November 2020 and can be redeemed on the entire new BS-VI range of cars and SUVs along with the company’s EV range.

  • Under the Gradual Step Up scheme, customers can avail EMI options as low as ₹799 per lakh per month, depending on the product and variant. The EMI payments gradually increase over a period of 2 years depending on the payment convenience of the buyer,
  • Flexi Drive scheme offers the option to the consumer to choose any three months every year, where s/he can pay a minimum EMI of ₹789 per lakh per month, depending on the product and variant as per convenience.


SPORTS

Elavenil Valarivan Wins Gold, Shahu Tushar Mane Silver in Sheikh Russel International Air Rifle Championship
World number one Indian Elavenil Valarivan won a gold medal and Shahu Tushar Mane bagged a silver in the Sheikh Russel International Air Rifle Championship, held virtually. The championship was organised by Bangladesh Shooting Sport Federation (BSSF).

  • Shiori Hirata won the silver, while Indonesian Vidya Toyyiba took the bronze, however, won the gold in the men’s event as Naoya Okada shot a solid to leave India’s Shahu behind. Shahu settle for second place while Baki Abdullah Hel won bronze for the hosts.
  • The championship is being held to commemorate the birth anniversary of Sheikh Russel, the youngest son of Bangladesh’s founding father Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and brother of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

Champions Mohun Bagan lift I-League 2019-20 trophy
The I-League 2019-20 trophy was handed over to the champions Mohun Bagan at a city hotel in Kolkata.

  • Dhanachandra Singh along with a couple of other players, assistant coach Ranjan Chaudhuri and other members of the support staff and senior clubs officials received the trophy from AIFF Leagues CEO Sunando Dhar in the presence of state sports minister Aroop Biswas.

Nozomi Okuhara clinches Women’s Singles title at Denmark Open
In Badminton, former World Champion Nozomi Okuhara clinched the Denmark Open title beating three-time world champion Carolina Marin in women’s singles.

  • In the men’s singles final, world number seven Anders Antonsen of Denmark defeated his compatriot Rasmus Gemke.
  • In the mixed doubles, fourth seeds Mark Lamsfuss and Isabel Herttrich became the first German mixed doubles players to win a Super Series event after defeating Chris and Gabby Adcock of England in the final.
  • In an all-Japan women’s doubles final, top seeds Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota downed second seeds Mayu Matsumoto and Wakana Nagahara.
  • Marcus Ellis and Chris Langridge of England defeated Russian pair Valdimir Ivanov and Ivan Sozonov 20-22, 21-17, 21-18, becoming the first England pair to clinch the title of men’s doubles in the Denmark Open for 45 years.

Pakistan fast bowler Umar Gul announces retirement from all forms of cricket
Pakistan speedster Umar Gul announced that he will retire from all forms of cricket after the end of the ongoing National T20 Cup.

  • Gul is probably most noted for his success in T20 cricket with Pakistan and he was the leading wicket-taker at both the 2007 and 2009 World Twenty20 tournaments.
  • From 47 Test matches, Gul took 163 wickets at an average of 34.06. He also claimed 179 wickets from 130 ODIs, besides 85 wickets from 60 T20Is.


APPOINTMENTS

Home Secy. Ajay Kumar Bhalla gets extension of service till 22nd August, 2021
Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla has got extension of service till 22nd August, 2021.

  • The Appointment Committee of the Cabinet approved the extension of Mr Bhalla in the same post, beyond the date of his superannuation on 30th Nov, 2020.

Rohan Jaitley elected unopposed president of Delhi and District Cricket Association
Rohan Jaitley, the son of former finance minister late Arun Jaitley, has been elected unopposed as the new president of Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA).

  • The 31-year-old lawyer is slated to remain in the post till June 30, 2021.

Jacinda Ardern wins 2nd term as New Zealand’s Prime MInister 
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern won a second term in office in an election landslide of historic proportions.

  • With most votes counted, Ardern’s liberal Labour Party was winning 49% of the vote compared to 27% for its main challenger, the conservative National Party.

Seema Mustafa Elected As President Of Editors Guild Of India
Seema Mustafa, the Editor of The Citizen, has been elected as President of the Editors Guild of India announced by the top body of editorial leaders.

  • Hardnews editor Sanjay Kapoor was elected as General Secretary. Anant Nath, the Editor of The Caravan, was elected unopposed as Treasurer.
  • Mustafa succeeds Shekhar Gupta, the Editor-in-Chief of ThePrint, while Kapoor and Nath will take over from A.K. Bhattacharya, the Editorial Director of Business Standard, and Sheela Bhatt, the Contributing Editor of Rediff.com, respectively.

Raj Kiran Rai G Elected as Chairman of Indian Banks’ Association
Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) said Union Bank of India’s MD and CEO Rajkiran Rai G has been elected as the association’s chairman for the term 2020-21.

  • State Bank of India’s chairman Dinesh Kumar Khara has been elected as the deputy chairman of the association.


AWARDS

Aishwarya Sridhar becomes first Indian woman to win Wildlife Photographer of the Year award
Making India proud, Aishwarya Sridhar, 23, has become the first Indian woman to win the Wildlife Photographer of the Year award.

  • Her photo won among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries across the world. Only 100 images were shortlisted and she won the award for her photograph in the Behaviour Invertebrates category.
  • Sridhar’s photograph titled ‘Lights of Passion’ bagged the coveted title at the award show organised by the National History Museum.


SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

India conducts successful night trial of nuclear-capable Prithvi-2 missile
India successfully conducted a night trial of the indigenously developed nuclear-capable Prithvi-2 missile as part of a user trial by the Army from a test range in Odisha.

  • The state-of-the-art surface-to-surface missile blasted off from launch complex 3 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur near Balasore.
  • The trial of the missile, which has a strike range of 350 km, was carried out from a mobile launcher.
  • The Prithvi-2 missile is capable of carrying 500-1,000 kg of warheads and is powered by liquid propulsion twin engines.

Supersonic Cruise Missile, BrahMos successfully test fired from Indian Navy’s indigenously-built stealth destroyer INS Chennai
BRAHMOS, the supersonic cruise missile was successfully test fired from Indian Navy’s indigenously-built stealth destroyer INS Chennai, hitting a target in the Arabian Sea.

  • BRAHMOS as a prime strike weapon will ensure the warship’s invincibility by engaging naval surface targets at long ranges, thus making the destroyer another lethal platform of Indian Navy.
  • The highly versatile BRAHMOS has been jointly designed, developed and produced by India and Russia.


OBITUARIES

Acclaimed carnatic vocalist P S Narayanaswamy passes away
Padmabhushana Vid. Shri Puliyur Subramaniam Narayanaswamy, one among the finest gurus of carnatic music in India, passed away. He was 86.

  • A winner of many awards and titles, including the Padma Bhushan, and Kalaimamani from the Tamil Nadu government, Narayanaswamy was a torch bearer of the Semmangudi Tradition, evolving a style of his own with ‘Manodharma Sangeetham’.


BOOKS & AUTHORS

Deepanker Aron’s book “On the Trail of Buddha: A Journey to the East” released
The book titled “On the Trail of Buddha: A Journey to the East” by Deepankar Aron has been released by West Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.

  • On the Trail of Buddha—A Journey to the East is a unique sojourn in search of the spiritual, philosophical, and cultural linkages that bind India to the East Asian civilisations. From the wandering monks of Asia to the temples and monasteries they visited; from the statues and frescoes in grottoes to those in the museums; from the diverse ethnicities of the people to their common gods and goddesses—the book explores the ‘ancient India’, beautifully preserved in the traditions, art, and architecture of China, as also in Mongolia, Korea and Japan, to where it spread from China.


IMPORTANT DAYS

NS Tomar virtually inaugurates the India – International Food & Agri Week
Food Processing Industries Minister Narendra Singh Tomar virtually inaugurated the India – International Food and Agri Week.

  • The Ministry has started an awareness campaign named ‘Anna Devo Bhava’ to mark this occasion.
  • Mr Tomar said Indian food processing sector is 32% of India’s food market and 3.4% GDP growth rate agriculture sector has contributed hugely to India’s economic growth even during Covid times.

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty
The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is an international observance celebrated each year on October 17 throughout the world.

  • The objective of  International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is to raise awareness about the people who are struggling amid poverty. Without achieving a poverty-free world, it is hard to imagine the development of humankind.
  • The theme for this year is “Acting together to achieve social and environmental justice for all”.


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