WEEKLY CURRENT AFFAIRS 12TH – 18TH APRIL 2020
By continuing with our weekly Current affairs series, this time on Sarkari Job portal we are sharing this week current affair news from 12th April to 18th April 2020. In this current affair video tutorial, the tutor is going to explain the most important current affair news of this week which is very important for various Competitive Examinations.
Those who wants to access our previous weekly current affairs video lectures and text file link can click on the following Link: “WEEKLY CURRENT AFFAIR SERIES”.
These Current affair news is very important for those candidates who are preparing for various competitive examinations. The expert has pickup only those major news which is importantly related to the competitive examination.
There is no big paragraph related to the Current Affair news, we are trying to explain the current affair news through small points so that you will come to know about the major points related to that particular current affair news.
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Weekly Current Affairs from 12th to 18th April 2020
1. ‘BHARAT PADHE ONLINE’ CAMPAIGN: HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ launched a week-long ‘Bharat Padhe Online’ campaign in New Delhi for crowd sourcing of ideas so as to improve the online education ecosystem of India, the main target audiences is teachers & students.
2. G20 EXTRAORDINARY ENERGY MINISTERS VIRTUAL MEETING: Dharmendra Pradhan has attended the G20 Extraordinary Energy Ministers’ virtual meeting 2020 on behalf of India through video conferencing. The meeting was presided over by Saudi Arabia, Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz.
3. FIRST STATION OF IR TO INSTALL SANITIZING TUNNEL: The Ahmedabad railway station at Kalupur, Gujarat of Western Railway became the first station of Indian Railways (IR) to install a Walk Through Mass Sanitizing Tunnel to ensure the safety of staff and passengers in the view of the COVID-19. The tunnel was inaugurated by Ahmedabad DRM (Divisional Railway Manager) Deepak Jha. The sanitization system runs on the principle of Vaporization process which converts the sanitizer mixture into vapor which forms a uniform layer over the surface & dries up quickly.
4. EXTERNAL ADVISORY GROUP OF IMF: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director (MD) Kristalina Georgieva named former Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Raghuram Rajan and 11 others to its new External Advisory Group. To provide perspectives from around the world on key developments, policy issues.
5. NATIONAL SAFE MOTHERHOOD DAY-APRIL 11: Celebrated annually on April 11, to raise awareness on proper healthcare and maternity facilities to pregnant and lactating women. NSMD is an initiative of the White Ribbon Alliance India (WRAI).
6. OPEC AND RUSSIA AGREED TO CUT CRUDE OIL PRODUCTION: In view of the fall in crude prices due to the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), an intergovernmental organization of 13 nations, and allies including Russia — a group known as OPEC+, have agreed to cut crude production by 9.7 million barrels per day (bpd) from May 1,2020 and will extend through the end of June 2020. Global oil prices have come down below $ 30 a barrel due to falling disputes in Russia and Saudi Arabia during the Coronavirus epidemic.
7. GLOBAL TRADE TO FALL BY 13%-32% IN 2020: World Trade Organisation (WTO) has released Annual Trade Statistics and Outlook Report has projected that the global trade is to fall by 13%-32% due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as it disrupts the normal economic activity and life around the world.
8. INDIAN ECONOMY GROWS AT 1.5-2.8% IN FY21: World Bank (WB) in its “South Asia Economic Focus: The cursed blessing of public banks the report” has projected that FY 2020-2021 (started April 1, 2020) is likely to be India’s worst growth performer fiscal year since 1991 due to the severe economic disruptions caused due to COVID-19 impact. For 2020-21, Indian economy is expected to grow 1.5% to 2.8% which is lower than the 5.4 – 4.1% estimate of October 2019.
By other international agencies
–Asian Development Bank (ADB): 4%
–S&P Global Ratings: 3.5%
–Fitch Ratings: 2%,
–India Ratings & Research: 3.6%
–Moody’s Investors Service: 2.5%
9. UGC CONSTITUTES 2 EXPERT COMMITTEES: University Grants Commission (UGC) has constituted 2 expert committees. 1st Committee- It is a 7 member committee headed by the vice-chancellor of the Central. University of Haryana- R.C. Kuhad, to look after the examination & academic calendar of students as Indian education system came to a standstill due to suspended classes.2nd Committee- It is formed in relation to students, teachers and the education system as a whole & also to promote online education.
10. PBOC INCREASES ITS STAKE TO 1% IN HDFC: People’s Bank of China (PBOC) increased its stake in Housing Development Finance Corp Limited (HDFC) to 1.01% from 0.8%on behalfs of the Chinese sovereign wealth fund SAFE. With this, now China’s central bank holds 1,74,92,909 crore equity shares in HDFC Ltd. As per the latest shareholding pattern, foreign portfolio investors (FPI) hold 70.88% stake in HDFC Ltd including 3.2% stake of the Government of Singapore.
11. WEB-PORTAL YUKTI IN NEW DELHI: Union Minister for Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) Ramesh Pokhriyal “Nishank” has launched a web-portal YUKTI-Young India Combating COVID with Knowledge, Technology and Innovation in New Delhi that will monitor and record the efforts and initiatives of MHRD.
12. MANIPUR INTRODUCES ‘FOOD BANK’ INITIATIVE: The Imphal East District Administration of Manipur state Government has launched a new initiative “Food Bank” based on the theme ‘Help End Hunger Today’ with the aim to provide free food to the poor people who are severely affected in getting essential commodities due to the long statewide lockdown in view of the threat of Coronavirus (COVID-19).
13. UN RELEASES $ 2.5 MILLION TO HELP CYCLONE-RAVAGED VANUATU: The United Nations (UN) humanitarian chief Mark Lowcock announced and released 2.5 million dollar from its emergency humanitarian fund to help thousands of people in the South Pacific island nation of Vanuatu affected by Cyclone Harold and offered support to other hard-hit countries.
14. RBI TO LAUNCH SOVEREIGN GOLD BONDS SCHEME 2020-21: The Central government after exercising its power conferred under clause (iii) of section 3 of Government securities Act 2006 has launched a new series of the Sovereign Gold Bond (SGB) Scheme namely “Sovereign Gold Bond 2020-21” which is to be issued by RBI in six tranches from April 2020 to September 2020. These bonds will fetch a fixed interest rate of 2.50% per annum. Minimum investment limit1 gram of gold, Maximum investment limit 4 KG for individual, 4 Kg for HUF and 20 Kg for trusts and similar entities per fiscal (April-March) Tenor 8 years with an exit option after completion of five years.
15. US CLEARS SALE OF HARPOON MISSILE TO INDIA: According to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the US President Donald Trump’s administration has approved the sale of Harpoon Block II air-launched missiles & MK 54 lightweight torpedoes priced a total of $ 155 million to India to combat regional threats and increase the security of its soil Harpoon missiles manufactured by Boeing & the torpedoes supplied by Raytheon, would be integrated with India’s P-8I aircraft (also known as the “submarine killer”).
16. 36TH SIACHEN DAY-APRIL 13, 2020: The Indian Army observed the 36th Siachen day to pay tribute to the brave soldiers who laid down their lives while protecting the frontiers of the country in Ladakh. On April 13, 1984, the Indian Army launched ‘Operation MEGHDOOT’ to secure Bilafond La and other passes on the Saltoro Ridgeline from the Pakistani invasion and repulsed the enemy.
17. POOL TESTING OF COVID-19: The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has given its approval for pool testing to Uttar Pradesh (UP), making latter the first state to do so. The decision has been taken to maximize the sample testing on a daily basis as the cases of COVID-19 positive patients are increasing in the state. Also Life insurance worth Rs 50 lakh has been provided to health workers, police personnel and home guards.
18. JIM CORBETT N.P. BECOMES QUARANTINE CENTRE FOR ANIMALS: Jim Corbett National Park of Uttarakhand, has become India’s 1st quarantine center for animals with symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19). At least 10 quarantine centers are being set up within the complex to handle the coronavirus prey animals & Cameras will be installed in the park to monitor the cold and cough symptoms of animals.
19. BSNL & SBI LAUNCHED BHARAT INSTAPAY: Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) in partnership with the SBI has launched a Unified Payments Interface (UPI) based payment platform, Bharat InstaPay to enable all types of channel partners of BSNL to digitize their payment transactions on around the clock basis/ real- time basis.
20. TELANGANA CM RECOMMENDED THE IMPLEMENTATION OF “HELICOPTER: MONEY”: Telangana CM has recommended that RBI should implement ‘helicopter money’ by way of quantitative easing (QE) policy. QE is followed all over the world, is the only way to deal with the situation. He also suggested releasing 5% funds from Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to improve money circulation in the system and boost the economy. This term has been coined by American economist Milton Friedman in his famous paper “The Optimum Quantity of Money” of 1969.
21. EDISON AWARD 2020: Tata Power company limited’s ‘Club Enerji Switch off 2S witchOn’ campaign, which is India’s 1st, energy & resource conservation club has won silver in the Edison Award 2020 under Social innovation’s subcategory, social energy solution. The company’s ‘Club Enerji’ is 12-year old sustainability the initiative that targets school children.
22. FORMER PAKISTANI FIRST-CLASS CRICKETER ZAFAR SARFRAZ PASSED AWAY DUE TO CORONAVIRUS
23. INTERNATIONAL DAY OF ACTION FOR RIVERS 2020-MARCH 14: Theme for the year 2020: Women, Water and Climate Change.
24. MS SAHOO PANEL PROPOSED NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF VALUERS: The government-appointed 8 member committee of experts headed by IBBI (Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India) Chairperson M S Sahoo has submitted a report on “valuation professionals” and proposed an institutional framework for valuers by setting up National Institute of Valuers (NIV). Proper valuation of a company is also a crucial part of any merger and acquisition. As of now, there is no standardized formula for valuing these assets of stressed companies worth thousands of crores who are up for sale under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC).
25. ASIA TO STALL AT 0% GROWTH IN 2020: IMF: International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) report titled ‘COVID-19 Pandemic and the Asia-Pacific Region: Lowest Growth Since the 1960s’ stated that Asia will stall at 0% growth in 2020 for the 1st time in 60 years which includes the Global Financial Crisis (4.7%) and the Asian Financial Crisis (1.3%).
26. ORIX ACQUIRES IL&FS’S 100% STAKE IN IWPSL: ORIX Corporation, a Japanese diversified financial services group, has completed its acquisition of 100% stake held by cash-strapped Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services (IL&FS) in its wholly-owned subsidiary IL&FS Wind Power Services Ltd (IWPSL) for Rs 6.05 crore. IL&FS Group in October 2019 has got the green signal to sell its 51 % stake in seven of its wind energy projects to Orix.
27. CENTRAL GOVERNMENT UNVEILS PUSA DECONTAMINATION: Minister of State (MoS) for Agriculture Kailash Choudhary inaugurated a “PUSA decontamination and sanitizing tunnel” in Delhi and was developed by the government research body ICAR-IARI (Indian Council of Agricultural Research).
28. WORLD VOICE DAY 2020: APRIL 16: Theme for the year 2020: FOCUS ON YOUR VOICE.
29. 1ST INTERNATIONAL MATHEMATICS DAY 2020: MARCH 14: Theme for the year 2020: Mathematics is everywhere.
30. ADVISORY ISSUED ON SECURE USE OF ZOOM MEETING PLATFORM: The Cyber Coordination Centre (CyCord), under the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), has issued an advisory to safeguard private individuals who use the video-conferencing app, Zoom for private purposes like a meeting platform & states that it is not for use by government officers/officials for official purposes. Taiwan becomes the 1st country to ban it from government business over cybersecurity concerns on April 7, 2020.
31. INDIA BECOMES WORLD’S MOST DIGITALLY DEXTEROUS COUNTRY: In accordance with the Gartner 2019 Digital Workplace Survey, India has become the world’s most digitally dexterous (skillful) country in the world as it has a vast Gen Z workforce who are keen to learn new digitally powered skills in the workplace. India is followed by the United Kingdom (UK) and United States (US).It should be noted that Generation Z or Gen Z are the ones born between 1995 and 2009. The digital workforce in India and Singapore use real-time messaging and social media networks more frequently for real-time collaboration than the workforce of China, France, Germany, the US and the UK.
32. RBI GOVERNOR ANNOUNCED RELIEF MEASURES FOR LIQUIDITY IN SYSTEM: Already, RBI has pumped Rs 1.2 lakh crore of fresh currency into the system in the last 45 days since the COVID-19 outbreak in the country.
Policy Rate Rate Change
Repo Rate 4.40% No change
Reverse Repo Rate 3.75% 25 bps
Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) Rate 4.65% No change
Bank Rate 4.65% No change
TLTRO 2.0 worth Rs 50,000 cr announced; Banks exempted from paying dividends RBI will conduct a second round (TLTRO 2.0) of targeted long term repo operations (TLTRO) for an initial amount of Rs 50,000 crore that will help in refinancing NBFCs and MFIs to maintain cash flow to the small and medium enterprises (SMEs). TLTRO is a tool under which the central bank provides one-year to three-year money to banks at the prevailing repo rate. Refinancing NABARD, SIDBI & NHB with Rs 50,000 crores
33. ‘KISAN RATH’ FOR FARMERS: Narendra Singh Tomar, has launched a farmer-friendly mobile application ‘Kisan Rath’ with tagline “Kisan ka apna Vahan” to facilitate the movement of crops. The app has been developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC) and will connect 5 lakh trucks & 20,000 tractors for transporting farm produce. The app will help in the movement of crops from farms to regulated markets.
34. NEW PIT VIPER DISCOVERED IN ARUNACHAL PRADESH: The new species of green pit viper discovered in Arunachal Pradesh by a team of researchers was named Salazar’s pit viper after Salazar Slytherin, a fictional character in J.K Rowling’s book series “Harry Potter”.
35. WORLD ART DAY 2020: APRIL 15: The day is chosen to honor & mark the birthday of famous Mona Lisa’s painter Leonardo da Vinci.
36. BOOK- SHUTTLING TO THE TOP: THE STORY OF P V SINDHU: A book titled “Shuttling to the Top: The Story of P V Sindhu” authored by Krishnaswamy V was published by HarperCollins in Amazon digital platform along with other two books, amid the lockdown due to Coronavirus.
37. WORLD HAEMOPHILIA DAY 2020: APRIL 17: The theme of the World Haemophilia Day is “Get+involved”.