Daily Current Affairs 24th January, 2020

Daily Current Affairs 24 January 2020 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.

NATIONAL NEWS

Taxi service ‘Women with Wheels’ launched at Indira Gandhi International Airport
At the Indira Gandhi International Airport launched ‘Women with wheels,’ taxi service that is unique as it is operated by women drivers, for women.

  • The service, an initiative by ‘Sakha cabs’ was launched from the international airport in a bid to make women feel safer.

National Data and Analytics Platform released by NITI Aayog
Government think-tank Niti Aayog will develop a national data and analytics platform to make all government data accessible to stakeholders in a user-friendly manner. The first version of National Data and Analytics Platform is proposed to be released in 2021.

  • NDAP will be a reliable platform for up-to-date data. Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) will be developed to keep data updated.

44th International Kolkata Book Fair will be held with Russia as focal theme country
The 44th International Kolkata Book Fair will begin from January 29, 2020 and Russia will be the focal country.
The fair would be held at the Central Park in Salt Lake this year, too, and stalls of approximately 600 publishers and 200 small magazines will be set up.

Minister of steel launched SAIL SERVICE scheme and Portal for SAIL employees
Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel Shri Dharmendra Pradhan launched a scheme of SAIL to promote Voluntary Philanthropist Activities (VPA) by its employees. The scheme called “SAIL Employee Rendering Voluntarism and Initiatives for Community Engagement (SERVICE)” will promote and facilitate philanthropist activities by the employees in a structured manner.

  • The Minister also launched a portal for the employees to register for the scheme. The dedicated interactive “SAIL SERVICE” portal for implementation of this Scheme.


INTERNATIONAL NEWS

India’s 1st Mahatma Gandhi convention centre inaugurated in Niger
External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar and President of Niger Mahamadou Issoufou jointly inaugurated the first convention centre established in Africa by India to honour the memory of Mahatma Gandhi. It is the first centre to be established in Africa by India to honour the memory of Mahatma Gandhi whose 150th Birth Anniversary was observed last year.

Switzerland tops the Global Talent Competitiveness Index 2020
India has climbed eight places to 72nd rank in the 2020 Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI), which was topped by Switzerland, the US and Singapore.

  • Yemen has finished at the bottom of this year’s index at 132nd as they had in 2019, just below Congo (130th) and Angola (131st).

Swiss bank Julius Baer report 2020: Mumbai among cheapest cities in the world for luxury goods
Out of 28 cities, Mumbai was ranked as the cheapest city for purchasing luxury goods and services, while Hong Kong was found to be the most expensive in Swiss wealth management group Julius Baer Group Ltd’s report ‘ Global Wealth and Lifestyle Report 2020’.

  • Ironically, Mumbai was found to be one of the most convenient cities in terms of property purchase

India 4th best market for global companies looking for growth abroad
As per the annual PwC CEO survey, India is their fourth choice after the US, China and Germany as only 9 per cent in a global survey favour India for their companies’ growth prospects. The survey was released during the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos.

Lebanon announces formation of new govt headed by Hassan Diab
Lebanon which has been rocked by anti-government protests for the last several months, finally has a new government, the country’s presidency.

  • The new government headed by Prime Minister Hassan Diab, a 60-year old professor at the American University of Beirut, will consist of 20 ministers-technocrats.


BANKING & FINANCE

Vodafone m-pesa’s Certificate of Authorisation cancelled by RBI
The Reserve Bank of India has cancelled the Certificate of Authorisation (CoA) of Vodafone m-pesa on account of voluntary surrender of authorisation.

  • However, customers or merchants having a valid claim on the company as a PSO, can approach the company for settlement of their claims within three years from the date of cancellation i.e. by September 30, 2022.

RBI has raised the Investment limit for FPIs in government & corporate bonds to 30%
The Reserve Bank of India raised the investment limit for FPIs in government and corporate bonds, a move that is likely to bring in more foreign funds in the country.

  • The short-term investment limit has now been increased from 20 per cent to 30 per cent in both the cases.Meanwhile, the RBI has also made relaxation in the voluntary retention route (VRR) for FPI investments in debt.The investment cap through VRR has been doubled to Rs 1.5 lakh crore

Exim Bank extends $35.80 mn LoC to Suriname for rural electrification
The Export-Import Bank of India (Exim Bank) has extended USD 35.80 million (about Rs 250 crore) line of credit to Suriname government to fund the country”s rural electrification programme.

  • The line of credit (LOC) is meant for financing rural electrification through solar DG hybrid PV systems in 50 remote villages of Suriname

ICICI Lombard gets IRDAI approval to pilot 5 projects under Regulatory Sandbox
ICICI Lombard has received Irdai’s approval to pilot five innovative applications and programs in its health and motor portfolio under the Sandbox Project.

  • ICICI Lombard is to pilot the five proposals from February 1, 2020 to July 31, 2020.

Bajaj Finserv partners with Apollo Hospitals to launch health EMI cards to patients
Apollo Hospitals Group in collaboration with Bajaj Finserv has launched a “Health EMI Card” that offers a credit limit of up to ₹4 lakh and covers nearly 600 procedures for patients.

  • The cards would be accepted across all Apollo Hospitals in the country. It also features a personal accident insurance cover of ₹ 1 lakh


BUSINESS & ECONOMY

IMF lowers India’s 2019 growth forecast to 4.8% from 6.1%
According to IMF’s World Economic Outlook update, India’s growth forecast for 2019 to 4.8 per cent from 6.1 per cent it projected in October on the back of sharp decline in consumer demand, stress in the NBFC sector and sluggish credit growth.

  • IMF stated that global growth is projected to rise from an estimated 2.9 percent in 2019 to 3.3 percent in 2020 and 3.4 percent for 2021 – a downward revision of 0.1 percentage point for 2019 and 2020 and 0.2 for 2021 compared to those in the October World Economic Outlook (WEO)

Reliance Jio becomes 1st Telecom to launch UPI Payments Feature
Mukesh Ambani-led telecom major Reliance Jio has launched UPI-powered payments service and has started offering the feature to its subscribers.

  • The company has become the first telecom operator to enter the UPI payments space.Reliance Jio, with its UPI payments feature, will now compete with private UPI payments providers — Paytm, Google Pay and PhonePe.

Ind-Ra predicts India’s GDP to grow at 5.5% for FY21
India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) expects a marginal improvement in economic growth in next fiscal, however, it cautioned that the downside risks persist. Ind-Ra expects gross domestic product (GDP) to grow at 5.5 per cent in FY21 from 5 per cent in 2019-20. 



SPORTS

Ministry of Sports de-recognised the Rowing Federation of India for violating the Sports Code of 2011
Rowing Federation of India (RFI) de-recognised by the Sports Ministry for violating the Sports Code of 2011 during its elections held in December 2019.

  • The Ministry also wrote to the Indian Olympic Association to constitute an ad hoc committee to discharge the functions of the RFI.

Maharashtra has topped the medal tally of Khelo India Youth Games 2020
In the 3rd Khelo India youth games in Guwahati, 44 medals are at the stake on the concluding day.

  • Maharashtra continues on top of medal tally with 245 medal including 75 gold. Haryana is on second place with 63 gold and Delhi is on third position with 36 gold.


APPOINTMENTS

Greece’s parliament elects Katerina Sakellaropoulou as its 1st woman president
High court judge and human rights advocate Katerina Sakellaropoulou has been elected Greece’s first female president by parliament.Sakellaropoulou was nominated by the ruling conservative New Democracy party, but also managed to secure the backing of the main opposition party Syriza and the center-left Movement for Change.



SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

‘Vyommitra’ a half-humanoid robot has been unveiled by ISRO  for Gaganyaan Space Mission
The Indian Space Research Organisation has unveiled a human robot namedVyommitra or “friend in the sky” that will be sent to space as part of the Gaganyaan mission, India’s ambitious plan to send humans to space.

  • Vyomitra can talk. She can recognise other humans. She can mimic what they would do in space. She can even hold conversations and answer queries.

POLNET 2.0 was inaugurated by the Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai
Union Minister of State for Home Affairs (MHA) Nityanand Rai inaugurated revamped police communication services POLNET 2.0.

  • It is armed with robust multi-media facility. POLNET 2.0 is a captive satellite-based network which provides video, audio and data connectivity across the country, especially in times of disasters when regular communication either gets jammed or crashes.

Indian Army to induct Artillery gun ‘Sharang’ by March 31, 2020
The first batch of 18 indigenously upgraded ‘Sharang’ artillery guns will be inducted into the Army by March 31 this year.

  • The gun, upgraded from 130mm to 155mm with a striking range of 39 kilometres, had successfully gone through integrated firing check on different parameters ranging from 0 degree to 45 degrees at the Long Proof Range of Ordnance Factory Khamaria, 16 kilometers from Jabalpur district headquarters.


BOOKS & AUTHORS

Book ‘The Story of Yoga: From India to the Contemporary World’ by Alistair released
Book titled “first definitive history” of Yoga, “The Story of Yoga: From India to the Contemporary World” has been written by Scottish cultural historian Alistair Shearer, released recently and published by Penguin Random House.

  • The book discusses about the practice of yoga since ancient time in India till now.


OBITUARIES

Monty Python star Terry Jones passes away
Terry Jones, a founding member of the anarchic Monty Python troupe who was hailed by colleagues as “the complete Renaissance comedian” and “a man of endless enthusiasms”, passed away in London. He was 77.



IMPORTANT DAYS

National Girl Child Day – January 24
The National Girl Child Day is celebrated in India every year on January 24 to spread awareness among people about all the inequalities girls face in the Indian society. The objectives behind celebrating the National Girl Child Day is to provide support and opportunities to the girls of India.

  • National Girl Child Day 2020 was celebrated with the theme of ‘Empowering Girls for a Brighter Tomorrow’.

24th January celebrated globally as International Day of Education
The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 24 January as International Day of Education, in celebration of the role of education for peace and development.

  • This year theme is ‘Learning For People, Planet, Prosperity, And Peace’.


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