Daily Current Affairs 2 April 2020 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
Jharkhand govt launches PRAGYAAM app to issue e-passes to everyone associated with delivery of essential services amid lockdown
The Jharkhand Government has launched a mobile app PRAGYAAM to issue e-passes to everyone associated with delivery of essential services during the national lockdown to combat COVID-19.
- District Transport Officers have been given authority to issue e-passes to vehicles through online mode after verification of the documents uploaded through the app . These passes will be issued to those involved in the regular supply services, medical, banking and other necessary services.
Karnataka government launches ‘Corona Watch’ app
The State government launched a mobile application Corona Watch for people to track the movement history of patients, who tested positive, before their detection so that they can take precautions. The app will give the date and time of visit to spots by the patients.
- The mobile app “Corona Watch” can be downloaded from Google Playstore https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ksrsac.drawshapefile.
PIB sets up COVID-19 fact check unit
The Press Information Bureau set up a portal for fact-checking issues related with the novel coronavirus pandemic, and it will receive messages by email and send its response in quick time.
- The PIB will also release a daily bulletin at 8 pm everyday to inform regarding Centre’s decisions and developments and progress on the deadly COVID 19
‘MahaKavach’ app to help in contact tracing
With a view to effectively combat the coronavirus pandemic, a digital application named ‘MahaKavach’ has been designed, which will help the health authorities in contact tracing and tracking of quarantined COVID-19 patients.
- This platform has been developed after extensive inputs from on-ground officials and by studying the existing methodologies deployed in other countries and other states in India
BANKING & FINANCE
Govt extends implementation of uniform stamp duty for capital market instruments to July 1
The government has put off implementation of the uniform stamp duty on transfer of shares, debentures, futures, options, currency and other capital market instruments to July 1, 2020.
- The finance ministry also clarified that there is no change in the financial.
- The notification issued by the department of revenue pertained to amendments in the Indian Stamp Act.
PPF rate slashed to 7.1%, lowest in 43 years; small savings rates cut up to 1.4%
Interest rate on public provident fund (PPF) scheme has been lowered to 7.1 per cent for the upcoming June quarter of financial year 2020-21.This is the lowest interest rate offered on the popular small savings scheme since 1977. Till the March quarter of FY20, PPF accounts used to attract 7.9 per cent interest.
- Finance Ministry has slashed the interest rates on other small savings schemes too, with changes varying in the range of 0.7-14 per cent.
- The new interest rates will remain in effect for the first quarter of financial year 2020-21, that is from April 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020. Rates for small savings schemes are revised quarterly.
World Bank offers USD one bn for COVID-19 India emergency
The World Bank has offered USD one billion to the Indian government for a proposed India COVID-19 emergency response and health systems preparedness project. The four-year project aims to develop the preparedness of India’s health care systems in the time of the pandemic.
- The idea of the project will be to respond and mitigate the COVID-19 threat and strengthen national systems for public health preparedness in India.
PhonePe partners Bajaj Allianz for hospitalisation insurance policy for COVID-19
Flipkart-owned PhonePe said it has launched a coronavirus hospitalisation insurance policy called ‘Corona Care’ in partnership with Bajaj Allianz General Insurance.
- The policy is priced at Rs 156 with an insurance cover of Rs 50,000 for a person aged under 55 years, and the cover is applicable at any hospital offering coronavirus treatment.
- It also covers 30 days of expenses related to pre-hospitalisation costs and post-care medical treatment
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Foreign Trade Policy 2015-2020 extended for one year
The Union Commerce and Industry Ministry announced changes in the Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) of the Government of India. The present Policy which came into force on 1st April, 2015, is for 5 years and has validity upto 31 March, 2020
- To provide continuity in the policy regime, the current FTP, valid till 31 March 2020 has been extended till 31 March 2021. Similar extension is made in the related procedures, by extending validity of Hand Book of Procedures.
- Exemption from payment of IGST and Compensation Cess on the imports made under Advance/EPCG Authorisations and by EOUs etc. has been extended up to 31 March 2021.
World Economy To Go Into Recession, Except India And China, UN Says
According to a latest United Nations trade report, the world economy will go into recession due to the coronavirus pandemic, with the exception of India and China.
- Two-thirds of the world living in developing countries are faced with unprecedented economic damage, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development said in its new analysis, calling for a $2.5 trillion rescue package for these nations.
To mitigate Covid-19’s economic fallout, UNCTAD proposed the following steps:
- A $1 trillion liquidity injection for those being left behind through reallocating existing special drawing rights at the International Monetary Fund.
- A debt jubilee for distressed economies under which another $1 trillion dollars of debts owed by developing countries should be cancelled this year.
- A $500 billion Marsha Plan for health recovery funded from some of the missing official development assistance long-promised but not delivered by development partners
Epicentre of COVID-19 pandemic, China to host Asian Youth Games in 2021
Epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic before it gripped Europe and the USA, China will host the third edition of the Asian Youth Games in Shantou in November next year, the Olympic Council of Asia said.
- The Chinese city of Wuhan was the epicentre of the pandemic that is still sweeping across the world with Western Europe and USA being the worst hit currently. The pandemic has led to the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics to 2021 and brought sports events to a halt
RBI extends J&K Bank CMD Chhibber’s tenure by 3 months
Jammu & Kashmir Bank said RBI has extended the tenure of R K Chhibber as the CMD for a period of three months with effect from 10th April, 2020 or till the appointment of a successor, whichever is earlier.
Syndicate Bank’s Krishnan S appointed as ED at Canara Bank post merger
Syndicate Bank has been merged with Canara Bank with effect from April1.
- In March, Canara Bank had said Krishnan S will be appointed as executive director with effect from April 1, 2020 till October 31, 2020, or until further orders
K Ramachandran assumes charge as Executive Director of Indian Bank
Indian Bank said K Ramachandran has taken charge as the new executive director of the bank with effect from April 1, 2020.
- Allahabad Bank has been amalgamated into Indian Bank with the commencement of new financial year 2020-21
D Lakshminarayanan named MD of Sundaram Home Finance
Sundaram Finance has announced the appointment of D Lakshminarayanan as the Managing Director of its wholly owned subsidiary, Sundaram Home Finance, effective April 1, 2020.
- Lakshminarayanan, who has been with the Sundaram Finance Group for over a decade, will take over from Srinivas Acharya, who had been Managing Director of Sundaram Home Finance since 2010
ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
HUL acquires Horlicks for Rs 3,045 cr as company completes merger with GSK Consumer
Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) announced the completion of merger of GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare Ltd (GSKCH) with itself, almost 15 months after the announcement of the mega deal.
- The board of HUL also gave its approval to the acquisition of the Horlicks brand from GSK for Rs 3,045 crore as part of an option available in the original agreement made between HUL and GSK.
- Besides, other Health Food Drinks (HFD) brands of GSKCH– Boost, Maltova and Viva — would come to HUL’s portfolio by virtue of the merger, making it a leading player in the segment.
Nirmal Singh, Gurbaani singer and Padma Shri awardee, passes away in Amritsar after testing positive for COVID-19
Bhai Nirmal Singh Khalsa, 67, a Padma Shri awardee and a former hazoori ragi (Gurbani exponent) at Golden Temple, passed away after a heart attack, a day after he was diagnosed with coronavirus disease (Covid-19).
- He was the first hazoori raagi to receive the Padma Shri Award, India’s fourth-highest civilian award.
Emmy award-winning singer Adam Schlesinger passes away
Emmy winner Adam Schlesinger, best known as the co-founder of the 2000s pop-rock band Fountains of Wayne, has succumbed to coronavirus complications. He was 52.
- He won three Primetime Emmys: two for original music and lyrics for the 2011 and 2012 Tony Awards and, another for original music and lyrics for “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” in 2015.
- “A Colbert Christmas”, co-written by Schlesinger and David Javerbaum, won him the 2009 Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album.
Nobel laureate Phillip Anderson passes away at 96
Philip Anderson, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist who expanded the world’s understanding of magnetism and superconductivity, has died. He was 96.
- During his career in academia, Anderson advised another Nobel Prize winner, F. Duncan Haldane, who won the 2016 prize in physics.
- Anderson inspired another winner, Brian Josephson, who won the 1973 Nobel Prize and took a class taught by Anderson at Cambridge.
World Autism Awareness Day
World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) is observed every year on 2 April in order to raise awareness about people with autistic spectrum disorders including autism and Asperger syndrome throughout the world.
- The theme of World Autism Awareness Day 2020 is “The transition of adulthood”.