15 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • EAM Jaishankar participated in SCO Foreign Ministers video conference on COVID-19EAM Jaishankar participates in SCO video conference

External Affairs Minister(EAM) S.Jaishankar participated in a virtual conference of foreign ministers hosted by Russia from Shanghai Cooperation Organisation(SCO) member states to discuss on the ongoing COVID-19 situation and insisted on the collective action against the terrorism and the security challenges.

  • PM CARES Fund trust allocates Rs 3,100 crore: COVID-19PM CARES Fund Trust Allocates Rs 3100 Crore

PM CARES(Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations) Fund Trust has allocated Rs 3100 crores(Rs 2000 crores- purchase of ventilators, Rs 1000 crores- care migrant labourers and Rs 100 crores- support vaccine development) to fight against COVID-19 pandemic.

  • ICMR fast-tracks roll out of ‘Solidarity’ trial to find treatment: COVID-19ICMR fast-tracks roll out of ‘Solidarity’ trial

The Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) has fast-tracked the rollout of the global ‘Solidarity’ trial launched by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to help find an effective treatment for COVID-19. The ICMR-National AIDS Research Institute(NARI) is the national coordination site for the trial in India.

  • Centre sets up “Rice Export Promotion Forum” to promote rice export center sets up new body Rice Export Promotion Forum to promote rice exports

Centre set up a new body Rice Export Promotion Forum to give impetus to rice exports under the aegis of Agricultural and Processed Foods Export Promotion Development Authority(Apeda).

  • Jal Jeevan Mission: Haryana and J&K to provide tap water to every household by Dec 2022Haryana to provide tap water connection new

The Union Territory (UT) Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) and the state Government of Haryana have planned to provide tap connection to supply water to all rural families by December 2022 under the Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM). While the national target has been set for the year 2024-25.

  • Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan Part-1: MSME focused package detailed by Nirmala Sitharaman; EPF contribution reducedFinance Minister announce measures for relief and credit support new

Measures taken in the package are focused on “Getting back to work” which enables employees, employers, and businesses to get back to production and workers back to gainful employment.

  • International tourism to decline 60-80% in 2020: UNWTO report international TOURIST NUMBERS COULD FALL 60-80%

According to the latest data of the United Nations, World Tourism Organization(UNWTO) the international tourism could decline by 60-80% in 2020 when compared with 2019 figures, due to COVID-19 pandemic outbreak.

  • India likely to miss global nutrition targets by 2025: WHO’s Global Nutrition Report 2020WHO’s Global Nutrition Report 2020

According to the World Health Organization(WHO)’s Global Nutrition Report 2020, India is one among 88 countries to miss global nutrition targets by 2025 & is with the highest rates of domestic inequalities in malnutrition. India along with Nigeria & Indonesia are worst in disparities in stunting & the levels varied four-fold across communities.

  • Forest loss rate globally declined from 2015 to 2020: FRA 2020Deforestation rate globally declined between 2015 and 2020

According to the Global Forest Resources Assessment(FRA), 2020 released by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization(FAO), the forest loss rate in 2015-2020 has declined to an estimated 10 million hectares(MHA), down from 12 MHA in 2010-2015.

  • Reserve Bank extends the interest subsidy scheme for exporters till 31 March 2021RBI extends the interest subsidy scheme for Exporters

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has extended the interest subsidy period by one year to 31 March 2021 on export credit received before and after shipment of goods to exporters. Exporters get the subsidy under the ‘Interest Equalisation Scheme for pre and post-shipment Rupee Export Credit’, which was ended on March 31, 2020. RBI in November 2018 has increased the interest subsidy on loan before & after sending export goods to 5% from 3%.

14 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • 68.2% of under-5 deaths in India due to child, maternal malnutrition; UP topped: Global Burden of Disease Study 2000–1768% of under-5 deaths in India due to child

Child and maternal malnutrition was the predominant risk factorin India as it attributed to 68·2% of under-5 deaths while low birth weight and short gestation led to 83·0% of neonatal deaths in 2017. Highest number of under-five and neonatal deaths in 2017 were reported in Uttar Pradesh (UP) followed by Bihar.

  • PM Modi announces Rs 20 lakh cr special economic package and Lockdown 4.0PM Modi announces Rs 20 lakh cr special economic package

This packageis the sum of earlier announcements by the government during covid-19 crisis and decisions taken by RBI viz. liquidity measures and rate cuts. The details of the plan are dubbed as “Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan” (self-reliant India) which is to be provided by Nirmala Sitharaman on the eve of May 13, 2020.

  • Registration Committee recommends banning use of TB drug on cropsBan use of TB drug on crops Central panel

The Registration Committee (RC) under the Central Insecticides Board and Registration Committee(CIBRC) has recommended the use of Tuberculosis(TB) drugs(antibiotics) like streptomycin and tetracycline to be banned completely with immediate effect on crops where other options were available for bacterial disease control.

  • 4 new products from three states receive Geographical Indication (GI) tagGI tag for Jharkhand’s Sohrai Khovar painting, Telangana’s Telia Rumal

Geographical Indications Registry headquartered in Chennai (Tamil Nadu) has granted Geographical Indication (GI) tag for 4 new products from three states. Jharkhand’s Sohrai Khovar painting (a traditional and ritualistic mural art), Telangana’s Telia Rumal cloth (an intricate handmade work with cotton loom) and Thanjavur Netti Works (pith works) and Arambavur Wood Carvings from the state of Tamil Nadu (TN) are the latest addition in the GI list.

  • ICMR, NCDC to initiate a population-based serosurvey in selected districts to monitor coronavirus prevalenceICMR, NCDC to start serosurvey to monitor coronavirus

Indian Council of Medical Research(ICMR) and National Centre for Disease Control(NCDC) are set to initiate a population-based sero-survey in selected districts in collaboration with key stakeholders and State Health Departments

  • A new initiative by the Railways and postal department for delivery and pick upNew initiative by Rlys,Postal dept

On 12th May 2020, TheThiruvananthapuram division of Southern Railways and Kerala Circle of Postal department has initiated a first of its kind to establish tie up with the door delivery and pick up of parcels to help the public during the lockdown. The service will help the consigner to transit upto 3.5 tonne packages as a single shipment.

  • In a 1st, PoK’s Gilgit-Baltistan & Muzaffarabad included in the meteorological forecast list of IMDIMD forecast lists PoK, Gilgit-Baltistan

The Regional Meteorological Centre of the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), has included the areas of Gilgit-Baltistan and Muzaffarabad, which are parts of PoK (Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir) in its weather forecasting for the 1st time. The department taken this decision as it says that it is a part of India and the country always maintains its position that PoK belongs to India.

  • India ranks 74th, Sweden tops: WEF’s global Energy Transition index 2020India up at 74th place on WEF’s global energy transition index

According to the World Economic Forum(WEF)’s global Energy Transition index(ETI) 2020, India has ranked 74th with a score of 51.5%, Sweden(74.2%) tops followed by Switzerland(73.4%) and Finland(72.4%).

  • BRICS’ New Development Bank provides USD 1 billion loan to India to fight COVID-19BRICS’ New Development Bank provides USD 1 billion loan

The‘Emergency Assistance Program Loan’ to India was approved by the NDB Board of Directors on April 30, and it is aimed at supporting the Indian government to contain the spread of COVID-19 and to provide financial aid.

  • World Airport Awards 2020: Bengaluru’s Kempegowda honoured as best regional airport in India & Central Asia; Singapore Changi crowned as World’s BestSKYTRAX ‘s World Airport Awards 2020

The Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) in Bengaluru (Karnataka) has won the SKYTRAX Award 2020 for Best Regional Airport in India and Central Asia. It ranks 68th in World’s Top 100 Airports 2020 list, which was topped by Singapore Changi Airport.

13 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • Harsh Vardhan addressed a digital conference RE-START to celebrate the National Technology DayDr Harsh Vardhan addresses a Digital Conference

The Union Minister of Science & Technology, Earth Sciences and Health & Family Welfare Harsh Vardhan addressed a digital conference RE-START(‘Reboot the Economy through Science, Technology and Research Translations’) to celebrate the National Technology Day

  • SRS Bulletin released: National infant mortality rate at 32, MP worst performer; Kerala achieved SDG targetNational infant mortality rate

India’s infant mortality rate (IMR) has improved very marginally from 33 per 1,000 live births in 2017 to 32 in 2018. In 2009-2018 it has declined from 50 to 32. Kerala is one of the states with an IMR in single digits at 7. It is also the only state which has now achieved the United Nations’ (UN’s) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) target for IMR reduction, set at eight for the year 2020.

  • Atal Pension Yojana completed 5 yrs on May 9, 2020 with 2.23 crore enrolmentAtal Pension Yojana achieves 2

The male to female subscription ratio of APY is 57:43. The scheme has been administered by Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA).

  • Department of Consumer Affairs partners with Safejob and Seekify to power Suraksha Store InitiativeConsumer Affairs dept partners with 2 startups to power

On 11th May 2020, The Department of Consumer Affairs partnered with two tech startups Safejob and Seekify to use the technology in the local Kirana store level to control the spread of COVID-19. The initiative of Suraksha Store is to provide safety and care about the health of the people during and after the lockdown due to COVID-19 pandemic.

  • MP becomes 1st in the country to launch ‘FIR Aapke Dwar Yojana’MP Home Minister launches countrys first ever FIR Aapke Dwar Yojana

Madhya Pradesh(MP) Home Minister Narottam Mishra launched the country’s 1st ‘First Information Report(FIR) Aapke Dwar Yojana‘(FIR at your doorstep) at the new Police Control Room, Bhopal to enable people to file FIRs from their homes instead of visiting police stations.

  • Gujarat based Macpower produces India’s 1st indigenous Seam Sealing Machine for PPEsGuj CM Vijay Rupani Launches India’s First PPE Kit Seam Sealing Machine

Macpower CNC Machines Ltd, a Rajkot (Gujarat) based manufacturer of CNC (Computerized Numerical Control), has made India’s 1st indigenous hot air seam sealing machine used to manufacture personal protective equipment (PPE) kits. The make in India machine, manufactured with the guidance of doctors at Indian Medical Association (IMA), was launched by Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani

12 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • India launched Mission Sagar to assist 5 island nations Indian Ocean amid COVID-19India launches Mission Sagar

Indian Naval Ship (INS) Kesari departed for Maldives, Mauritius, Seychelles, Madagascar and Comoros, to provide Food items, COVID related Medicines including Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) Tablets and Special Ayurvedic Medicines with Medical Assistance Teams.

  • Ministry of petroleum and natural gas sets up 6 member panel to review production sharing contractsCentre sets up six-member panel production sharing contracts

The ministry of petroleum and natural gas has set up a 6 member panel to review the existing Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) due to the fall in crude oil prices and the COVID-19 lockdown.

  • National Gallery of Modern Art launches a virtual program ‘NGMA Ke Sangrah Se’ to showcase artworksNational Gallery of Modern Art presented the virtual program NGMA KE SANGRAH SE

National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) New Delhi, has launched a virtual program called “NGMA KE SANGRAH SE” to showcase an iconic and rare collection of artifacts from its repository.

  • ICMR ties-up with India Post for lab delivery of Covid-19 testing kitsIndia Post partners ICMR for delivery of COVID-19 testing kits

Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has entered in to the partnership with India Post to deliver coronavirus (COVID-19) test kits from its 16 regional depots to the 200 additional labs set by ICMR in the country.

  • TRIFED under AOL signed a MoU to promote the tribal enterprisesTRIFED, AOL ink MoU to promote tribal enterprises

Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India(TRIFED) under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs and Art of Living(AOL) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU)to collaborate in programmes of each organisation to promote the tribal enterprises

  • 17 laureates conferred with DW Freedom of Speech Award 2020; Journalist Siddharth Varadarajan from India among themJournalist Siddharth Varadarajan Deutsche Welle Freedom of Speech Award

On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day 2020, i.e. on May 3, 2020, 17 journalists from 14 countries have been named for Deutsche Welle Freedom of Speech Award 2020 who have disappeared or been arrested or threatened because of their reporting on the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Narinder Batra to remain as FIH President until May 2021Narinder Batra’s Term As FIH President

The International Hockey Federation(FIH) announced that it has extended the terms of its president Narinder Dhruv Batra & the Executive Board(EB) members which is due to end in October 2020 has been extended until the 47th FIH Congress in May 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • ICMR-NIV develops 1st indigenous antibody detection kit “COVID KAVACH ELISA” for COVID-19National Institute of Virology develops first indigenous antibody detection kit

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan informed that Indian Council of Medical Research(ICMR)-National Institute of Virology(NIV) has developed the 1st indigenous anti-Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2(SARS-CoV-2) human Immunoglobulin G(IgG) enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) test kit, “COVID KAVACH ELISA” for antibody detection of COVID-19.

11 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • Defence Ministry signs contract with Tata Power SED for Phase-II of Modernisation of Air Field InfrastructureDefence Ministry signs contract with Tata Power SED

The Defence Ministry has signed a contract worth around Rs 1,200 crore with Tata Power Strategic Engineering Division(TPSED) for Phase-II of Modernisation of Airfield Infrastructure(MAFI) of 37 airfields for Indian Air Force(IAF), Indian Navy (IN) and Indian Coast Guard (ICG)

  • Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ announces modifications in PMRF Scheme to boost research union HRD Minister announces modifications in PMRF Scheme

Union Human Resource Development(HRD) Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ announced various modifications(amendments) in the Prime Minister’s Research Fellowship(PMRF) Scheme.

  • WHO and UN’s postal agency releases commemorative stamp on 40th anniversary of smallpox eradication who release stamp 40th anniversary of smallpox eradication

On May 9, 2020, The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations (UN) postal agency released a commemorative postage stamp on the 40th anniversary of the eradication of smallpox. The commemorative stamp was designed and developed by Sergio Baradat, United Nations Postal Administration (UNPA) in collaboration with WHO.

  • Government hikes its market borrowing to Rs 12 lakh crore from Rs 7.80 lakh crore for FY 21: COVID-19 impactCOVID-19 impact Govt hikes market borrowing limit

The Government has hiked its estimated gross market borrowing to Rs 12 lakh crore(additional Rs 4.2 lakh crore) from Rs 7.80 lakh crore for Financial Year(FY) 2020-21 as per the Budget Estimates(BE) so as to tackle the expected shortfall in revenue due to the impact of COVID-19 crisis on the economy.

  • FM Nirmala sitharaman launches INR-USD futures and options contracts on BSE, NSE at Gift cityNirmala Sitharaman launches INR – USD Futures and Options

Union Minister for Finance & Corporate Affairs Nirmala Sitaraman launched INR-USD (Rupee-Dollar) Futures and Options contracts on two international exchanges namely BSE’s India INX and NSE’s NSE-IFSC at the International Financial Services Center (IFSC) of Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City) in Gandhinagar through a video conference.

 

10 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. has predicted India’s GDP (Gross domestic product) growth for 2020-21 (FY21) at -0.4% following the expansion of the lockdown.

Giriraj Singh presents awards to the winners of “Startup India- Animal Husbandry Grand Challenge”Union Minister for Fisheries Shri Giriraj Singh presents awards “Startup India-Animal Husbandry Grand Challenge” Union Minister for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Giriraj Singh(chief guest) presented the award to the winners of “Startup India-Animal Husbandry Grand Challenge”. Minister of State of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying(AHD), Sanjeev Kumar Balyan & Secretary AHD,

  • Edu-tech firm ELSA Corp appoints Indian cricketer Ajinkya as its brand ambassador for India, Middle East, ANZ & SAARCAjinkya Rahane becomes brand ambassador ELSA Corp

ELSA Corp (English Language Speech Assistant Corporation) India, the education technology company based out of the US (United States), has appointed the Indian Test team vice-captain Ajinkya Madhukar Rahane as its brand ambassador for India, Middle East, ANZ (Australia & New Zealand) and SAARC.

  • 74% stake of SeQuent bought by Carlyle for Rs 1,587 croreCarlyle to buy 74% stake in SeQuent

On 8th May 2020, The Carlyle Group, an United States(US) based private equity firm acquired a 74% stake in Sequent Scientific Limited, the largest animal healthcare company from India for Rs.1,587 crore($210 million) for Rs.86 apiece.

  • Britain’s GlaxoSmithKline sells 5.7 % stake in Hindustan Unilever for $3.35 billion GlaxoSmithKline Sells Stake to Hindustan Unilever

British firm GlaxoSmithKline plc (GSK) has sold its 5.7 % stake in Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) for $3.35 billion (about 254.8 billion rupees) in the stock market through a largest-ever block deal.

  • IIT-Delhi startup launches reusable antimicrobial mask NSafeIIT-Delhi startup launches reusable antimicrobial mask NSafe

With the increasing demand for face masks to contain transmission of deadly COVID-19 virus, IIT (Indian Institute of Technology)- Delhi startup company named Nano safe solutions has developed and launched an antimicrobial and washable face mask “NSafe” that can be reused up to 50 launderings.

  • CSIR receives approval for a clinical trial of two drugs, ‘phytopharmaceutical & favipiravir’ to treat COVID-19CSIR receives approval for a clinical trial of two drugs

On May 8, 2020, The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) received approval from Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) for its two clinical trial drugs- “favipiravir” and “phytopharmaceutical”- to combat coronavirus (COVID-19).

09 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • Nitin Gadkari sets road construction target for next 2 years at Rs 15 lakh crore during virtual meet of MoRTH & SIAMGadkari sets road construction target

The objective of the meet was to discuss challenges being faced by the auto industry affected by COVID-19 pandemic along with few suggestions and requested support from the government to keep the smooth working of the sector.

  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurates 80 km link road for Kailash Mansarovar through VCRaksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh inaugurates 80 km long

Defence Minister Shri Rajnath Singh has inaugurated 80km strategically crucial road link connecting Lipulekh pass (China Border) with Dharchula in Uttarakhand through video conferencing (VC).

  • SC Ruling: Cooperative banks come under SARFAESI Act, 2002; Parliament can prescribe recovery process for cooperative banksCooperative banks come under SARFAESI Act

Section 2(1)(c) of SARFAESI Act of 2002 empowers the cooperative banks with recovery procedures including seize and sell defaulters’ assets. The recovery procedure u/s (under section) 13 of the Act is also applicable to such banks.

  • Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh approves abolition of 9,304 posts in Military Engineering ServiceRajnath Singh approves abolition of 9,304 posts in MES

On the recommendation of the Committee of Experts (CoE), headed by Lt General DB Shekatkar, Raksha Mantri (Minister of Defence) Rajnath Singh has approved the proposal of Engineer-in-Chief of Military Engineering Services (MES), Lt Gen Sanjeev Kumar Shrivastava, for abolition of 9,304 posts in MES. The recommendations by the committee, if implemented over the next five years, can result in savings of up to Rs 25,000 crore in defence expenditure.

  • AIIB grants $500 mn loan to India to deal with coronavirus disasterAIIB approves $500 million loan

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has approved a loan worth of $500 million for India’s ‘COVID-19 Emergency Response and Health Systems Preparedness Project’ to assist nation’s efforts to stop the risk posed by coronavirus (Covid-19).This is the first-ever health sector support from AIIB to India.

  • NABARD disburses Rs 12,767 crore to State Co-op Banks & RRBs to extend credit to farmers aboard disburses ₹12,767 cr

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development(NABARD) disburses Rs 12,767crore to State Co-operative(Co-op) Banks & Regional Rural Banks(RRBs) across the country to increase their resources for extending credit to farmers during the lockdown due to the outbreak of COVID-19

  • Moody’s slashes India’s GDP growth to zero in FY 21 from 2.6%Moody’s India’s economic growth at zero’ in FY21

On May 8, 2020, Moody’s slashed down India’s Gross Domestic Product(GDP) growth to zero for the current fiscal 2020-21 from its earlier forecast of 2.6%. In 2021-22 India’s GDP growth rate will bounce back to 6.6%.

  • Yes Bank appoints Neeraj Dhawan as chief risk officers Yes Bank appoints Neeraj Dhawan

The Yes Bank appointed Neeraj Dhawan, as Chief Risk Officer(CRO) for a period of three years with immediate effect replacing Ashish Agarwal, the current Chief Risk Officer

08 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • Energy efficiency initiatives by BEE led to savings worth Rs. 89,122 Cr. in 2018-19

India reduced energy intensity in 2018-19 by 20% as compared to 2005 level. India has set a target to reduce the energy intensity by 33-35%by 2030 compared to 2005 level.

  • MP becomes the first state in country to provide Mid-Day Meal rationMP first state in country to provide mid-day meal ration

The Central Government appreciated that Madhya Pradesh (MP) has become the first state in the country to provide a mid-day meal ration. Manoj Shrivastava, Additional Chief Secretary Panchayat and Rural Development, informed that this information has been given in the review meeting conducted by the Central Government.

  • Harsh Vardhan & Shripad Yesso Naik launched Ayush Sanjivani app & interdisciplinary studies involving AYUSH interventionsAYUSH interventions for COVID 19

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and Minister of State for Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy(AYUSH) Shripad Yesso Naik jointly launched Ayush Sanjivani application & clinical research studies on Ayurveda interventions as an addition to standard care to COVID 19 situation in New Delhi

  • India’s unemployment rate shoots up to 27.11% amid COVID-19 crisis: CMIEIndia’s unemployment rate rises to 27

According to the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy(CMIE) the country’s unemployment rate rose to 27.11% for the week ended May 3 due to the COVID-19 crisis, up from the under 7% level before the start of the pandemic in mid-March.

  • India for the 1st time has more internet users in rural areas than urban: IAMAI reportFor the first time, India has more rural net users

According to ‘Digital in India’ report by the Internet & Mobile Association of India(IAMAI) & Nielsen shows that for the 1st time has more internet users in rural areas than urban, where rural India had 227 million active internet users, 10% more than urban India’s about 205 million, as of November 2019.

  • CSIR launches Compendium of Indian Technologies to tackle COVID-19 pandemicCSIR launches Compendium of Indian Technologies

On 6th May 2020, The National Research Development Corporation (NRDC)working under the administrative control of the Dept. of Scientific & Industrial Research, Ministry of Science & Technology. prepared a compendium of Indian Technologies for combating COVID-19 pandemic which is categorized as tracking, testing and treating was launched by Dr.Shekhar C. Mande, Director General CSIR, Secretary, DSIR, Government of India.

  • Govt to run awareness campaign in 1 lakh villages on balanced use of fertilisers for FY20-21Govt to run awareness campaign in 1 lakh villages

In this regard, Soil Testing Labs by youth having education in agriculture, Women Self Help Groups, FPOs (Farmer’s Produce Organization) etc. will be set up at village level Soil Health Card (SHC) scheme.

  • India’s energy demand falls by 30% due to covid-19 lockdown: IEA-Global Energy Review 2020India’s energy demand falls by 30% IEA-Global Energy Review 2020

In India, energy demand would decline for the first time, following on from low demand growth in 2019.

  • Iran approves currency denomination bill to slash 4 zeros from Rial and covert to TomanIran Reportedly Approves Plan to Rename

The parliament of Iran has approved a bill on national currency denomination, which allows to cutting four zeros from its national currency Rial & to rename it as ‘Toman’ which is equal to 10,000 rials.

  • UNEP extends Bollywood actress Dia Mirza’s term as Goodwill ambassador till 2022Dia Mirza’s tenure as UNEP Goodwill Ambassador

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has extended the Bollywood actress & environmentalist Dia Mirza‘s term as its National Goodwill Ambassador for another two years till the end of 2022.

07 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • Indian Navy’s ‘Samudra Setu’ to bring stranded Indian citizens from the Maldives; Air India will evacuate from other 12 nations Indian Navy launches ‘Operation Samudra Setu’

Indian Navy has sent two India Naval Ships (INS) viz. Jalashwaand Magaron May 5, 2020, to Maldives capital Male to commence the first phase of the evacuation operations of Indians stranded abroad from May 8, 2020.

  • Surakshit Dada-Dadi & Nana-Nani Abhiyan campaign to protect senior citizens during COVID-19: NITI AayogNiti Aayog starts campaign Surakshit Dada-Dadi & Nana-Nani Abhiyan

The National Institution for Transforming India(NITI) Aayog in association with Piramal Foundation(the philanthropic arm of the Piramal Group) launched virtually the ‘Surakshit Dada-Dadi & Nana-Nani Abhiyan’ campaign to ensure well being of senior citizens during the COVID-19 pandemic

  • 5,037,000 people internally displaced in India in 2019: UNICEF reportLost at home people internally displaced in India

At the end of 2019, an estimated 46 million people were internally displaced by conflict and violence, out of which, more than 4 in 10 or 19 million were children.

  • PNB Housing Finance Limited signs MoU with IIT Delhi to develop reusable PPE kits PCB Housing Finance MoU With IIT Delhi

Punjab National Bank Housing Finance Limited has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Indian Institute of Technology Delhi to support the research and development of a unique prototype material to be used in the manufacture of washable and reusable Personal Protective Equipment(PPE) surgical gowns and masks by using Jacquard knitting

  • Bharat Dynamics Limited signs MoU with IIT Kanpur to manufacture ventilators for COVID-19 treatment LDL signs MoU with IIT Kanpur to manufacture ventilators

Bharat Dynamics Limited(BDL), a Defence Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) with Indian Institute of Technology(IIT), Kanpur for the large-scale manufacture of ventilators developed by NOCCA Robotics(incubated start-up of IIT Kanpur)to enhance the development of affordable ventilators for COVID-19

  • IIT-Bombay Professor Saurabh Lodha receives Young Career Award 2020 in Nano Science and TechnologyIIT Bombay Professor receives Young Career Award in Nano Science & Technology 2020

On 5th May 2020, Professor Saurabh Lodha of Electrical Engineering of IIT Bombay received Young Career Award 2020 in Nano Science and Technology given by the Department of Science and Technology(DST), Government of India to recognize his contribution for the development of two dimensional Van der Waals material based logic transistor technologies beyond silicon and nanoelectronic

  • Economic Affairs Secretary Tarun Bajaj appointed as Director on RBI Central BoardTarun Bajaj as Director on RBI Central Board

The government-appointed Economic Affairs Secretary Tarun Bajaj, a 1988 batch Indian Administration Service(IAS) officer, as a director on the central board of the Reserve Bank of India(RBI). He replaces Atanu Chakraborty, who retired on April 30

06 MAY CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020
  • Narendra Modi participates in online Summit of NAM Contact GroupPrime Minister participates at the online Summit

Prime Minister(PM) Narendra Modi participates in the online summit of Non-Aligned Movement(NAM) Contact Group on the theme “United against COVID-19” hosted by the current Chairman of NAM, President of Republic of Azerbaijan HE Ilham Aliyev through videoconference to discuss the response to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis.

  • Dr. Jitendra Singh attended Bamboo Conclave through Video ConferenceDr Jitendra Singh participates Bamboo Conclave

The aim of the conference was to discuss the importance of Bamboo, which will provide an opportunity for India to emerge as an economic power post-COVID-19.

  • IIT Alumni Council Launches India’s first COVID-19 test bus in Mumbai India’s first Covid-19 test bus launches

On 1st May 2020, The Indian Institute of Technology(IIT) Alumni Council launched a “COVID-19 test bus” in Mumbai, Maharashtra, and inaugurated by Chief Minister UddhavThackery, Health Minister Rajesh Tope.

  • ‘India SME Services Platform’ to be launched: SIDBISidbi to launch a digital platform

The Small Industries Development Bank of India(SIDBI) informed that it will launch ‘India SME Services Platform’, a digital platform to educate stakeholders in the small and medium enterprises(SME) ecosystem and have information on coronavirus-related initiatives

  • DBS Bank slashes India’s FY21 GDP forecast to 1% from 1.5%; another Rs 1.5-3 lakh-cr relief package required DBS Bank slashes India’s FY21 GDP

The general government (the Centre and States) deficit is likely to rise to 10-10.5% of GDP in FY21 vs around 6% of GDP earlier.

  • 2020 Pulitzer Prizes announced: 3 photojournalists from Jammu & Kashmir won the feature photography3 photojournalists from Jammu & Kashmir win Pulitzer Prize 2020

The three Indian photojournalists namely Dar Yasin, Mukhtar Khan, and ChanniAnand from Jammu and Kashmir who work for Associated Press (AP) have won the 2020 Pulitzer Prize in feature photography for their striking images of life” in the valley.

  • Vladimir Putin awards commemorative World War II medal to North Korean leader Kim Jong-uncommemorative World War II medal to Kim Jong-un

On May 5, 2020, The Russian embassy in Pyongyang, North Korea announced that the Russian President Vladimir Putin has awarded North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un a commemorative war medal marking the 75th anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany

  • Nicholas C. Coops, Joseph J. Landsberg and Richard H. Waring shares the Marcus Wallenberg Prize 2020marcus wallenberg prize 2020

Professors Nicholas C. Coops from Canada, Richard H. Waring from the United Nations of America(USA), Joseph J. Landsberg from Australia shares the ‘Marcus Wallenberg Prize(MWP) 2020’ for 3-PG (Physiological Principles Predicting Growth), a model to predict forest growth in a changing climate.

  • Panel formed to frame standard professional indemnity policy: IRDAIIrdai sets up panel to insurance intermediaries

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India(IRDAI) has set up a panel to frame standard professional indemnity policy for insurance intermediaries that can be issued by all the insurers. It is headed by Yegnapriya Bharat, CGM (Non-Life), IRDAI

  • Krishnan Ramachandran appointed as Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of Max BupaMax Bupa appoints Krishnan Ramachandran as MD, CEO

Max Bupa Health Insurance appointed Krishnan Ramachandran as its new managing director(MD) and Chief Executive Officer(CEO). He succeeds Ashish Mehrotra, after almost 5 years of service in its company

05 May Current Affairs 2020
  • NMCG & NIUA organized IDEAthon, a webinar; collaborated on urban river management planIDEAthon on “The future of River Management’

The lockdown imposed to contain the spread of COVID-19 crisis has imposed severe concerns on the economy; meanwhile, it is showing some positive developments in the natural environment of India.

  • India ranked 3rd among countries in scientific publication in 2018; expenditure on R&D tripled: NSTMISResearch and Development

India occupies 3rd rank in terms of number of Doctor of Philosophy (Ph. D.)’s awarded in Science and Engineering (S&E) after USA (39,710 in 2016) and China (34,440 in 2015).

  • Reserve bank cancels Mumbai’s 105-year-old CKP co-op bank licenseRBI cancels licence of CKP Co-operative Bank

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has cancelled the license granted to the 105-year-old CKP Co-operative Bank Ltd located in Mumbai (Maharashtra) to conduct banking business which includes acceptance of deposits and repayment of deposits as defined in Section 5 (b) read with Section 56 of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 with immediate effect.

  • IIT Hyderabad to collaborate with Hong Kong firm to create venture ecosystemIIT Hyderabad to collaborate with Hong Kong firm

 The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Hyderabad, collaborated with New Frontier Capital Management, a financial firm based in Hong Kong with offices in Tokyo & Singapore, to establish a global network of ventures as well as to create a venture ecosystem.

  • US private equity firm Silver Lake buys 1.15% stake in Reliance Jio platforms for Rs 5655.75 crSilver Lake buys stake in Reliance Jio for Rs 5,655

US-based private equity company Silver Lake partners has bought a 1.15% stake in Jio Platforms Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) for Rs 5,655.75 crore ($750 million).

  • Polycab India acquired 50% stake in Ryker from Singapore-based TrafiguraPolycab India buys 50%

PIL has acquired 2,60,10,000 (i.e. balance 50% equity shares) of face value of Rs.10/- each held by Trafigura, Singapore (‘Trafigura’) in Ryker Base. The purchase consideration is likely to be around US $ 4 Million (Rs 300 million).

  • Russia to launch its 1st satellite ‘Arktika-M’ to monitor Arctic climate & environment Russia to launch first Arktika-M satellite

Russia will launch its 1st remote-sensing and emergency communications satellite ‘Arktika-M’ by December 9, 2020, to monitor the Arctic climate and environment. It will be launched from Baikonur space center (Kazakhstan) using a Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket with a fregat booster.

  • NIAB develops portable coronavirus detection kit “eCovSens”coronavirus detection kit eCovSens

On 3rd May 2020 The researchers from the Department of Biotechnology(DBT), National Institute of Animal Biotechnology(NIAB) developed a biosensor “eCovSens” to detect the novel coronavirus within 30 seconds using 20 microliters of the sample of saliva The Biosensors is currently used to detect toxins, narcotic drugs and used as a reliable tool to detect infectious diseases.

  • BharatPe launches two apps to limit the need to touch handsets for checking transactionsBharatPe launches two apps

On 4th May 2020, the BharatPe, a Merchant payment and a leading network provider launched two voice-based applications Paisa Bolega and BharatPe Balance for the account holders to access transactions and balance using without touching the phones in the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Aarogya Setu Mitr launched in private public partnership initiativeA new private-public partnership initiative called Aarogya Setu Mitr launched

On 4th May 2020, AarogyaSetuMitr launched in a new private-public partnership(PPP) initiative will be available in the AarogyaSetu app offering consultation regarding COVID-19 from the Tata group, Tech Mahindra and Swasth, a collaboration of other related entities.

04 May Current Affairs 2020
  • Five more States/UTs integrated with ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ platform, taking the total to 17Five more states have joined the One Nation One Ration Card

The newly approved states/UTs under this plan are Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu. Already this plan has been initiated in 12 states viz. Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Kerala, Karnataka Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Telangana, and Tripura.

  • Maharashtra the first state government to announces free and cashless insurance to the people free and cashless insurance premium

On 1st May 2020, After the events of Maharashtra Day, The Health Minister of Maharashtra Rajesh Tope announced that Maharashtra will be the first state to provide free and cashless insurance protection to the people and the covered under the state governments health scheme and for the treatment of COVID-19 patients at the private hospitals in Pune and Mumbai the government.

  • 200 new man dis added to the e-NAM platform from 7 States: Narendra Singh Tomar200 new man dis Integrated with eNAM

The Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar has added 200 new man dis to the e-National Agriculture Market (e-NAM) platform from 7 States. For the 1st time in India 2 different e-trading platforms e-NAM & Unified Market Platform(UMP).

  • IIT-Madras Professor & Padma Shri awardee Thalappil Pradeep named for 25th Nikkei Asia Prizes 2020 in S&T

The prize includes a cash component of 3 Million Yen and an award certificate and is scheduled to be awarded in Tokyo, Japan later 2020.

  • Professor Shobhana Narasimhan of JNCASR elected as International Member to American Academy of Arts and ScienceProfessor Shobhana Narasimhan elected as International Honorary Member

Professor Shobhana Narasimha head of the Computational Nanoscience group from the Theoretical Science Unit(TSU), Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research(JNCASR), an autonomous institute under the Department of Science and Technology of the Government of India has been elected as an International Honorary Member to the American Academy of Arts and Science

  • Traders’ body CAIT to launch national e-commerce marketplace ‘Bharat market’ for retail tradersCAIT to launch e-commerce marketplace Bharat market

Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) in association with several technology partners, will soon launch a national e-commerce marketplace ‘Bharat market’, for all retail traders in India, who have served Indian consumers for years.

  • US Scientists discover 1st known aquatic Dinosaur ‘Spinosaurus aegyptiacus’Scientists discover 1st known swimming dinosaur

According to the study published in the journal Nature, a team of US(United States) scientists have discovered a carnivorous (meat-eating) swimming dinosaur named “Spinosaurus aegyptiacus” at the Kem Kem region of the Moroccan Sahara in North Africa.

03 May Current Affairs 2020
  • Ravi Shankar Prasad attended an extraordinary virtual ‘G20 Digital Economy Ministers’ meet

An Extraordinary Virtual G20 Digital Economy Ministers meeting was held to discuss the challenges posed by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and to forge a global coordinated response harnessing Digital Technologies.

  • Kashmir saffron gets GI tag

The Kashmir saffron cultivated and harvested in the Karewa (highlands) of Jammu and Kashmir gets Geographical Indication(GI) tag by the Geographical Indications Registry. It is the only saffron in the world grown at an altitude of 1,600 metre(m) to 1,800 m Above Mean Sea Level.

  • USD 400 million multi-year financial support to India: World Bank

The World Bank‘s Board of Executive Directors has approved a USD 400 million multi-year financial support to help India enhance its coastal & marine resources, protect marine resources & coastal populations from pollution, erosion, sea-level rise, and improve livelihood opportunities for coastal communities

  • Ramesh Babu appointed as NTPC director operations

State-owned power giant NTPC (National Thermal Power Corporation Limited) appointed Ramesh Babu V as director (operations). He was the successor of Prakash Tiwari who retired on April 30, 2020. Before his appointment Babu served as the Executive Director (ED) to the CMD (Chairman and Managing Director) while also working on system improvement activities & strategies related to the operational excellence of NTPC power plants.

  • CSIR Launched ‘Kisan Sabha’ App to Connect Farmers to Supply Chain and Freight Transportation Management System

Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra, Director General(DG), Indian Council of Agricultural Research(ICAR) and Secretary Department of Agriculture Research Education(DARE), remotely launched the Kisan Sabha app developed by CSIR-Central Road Research Institute (CSIR-CRRI), New Delhi to connect with the supply chain and Freight Transportation Management System for the farmers trying to reach the market, seed/fertilizer procurements to make timely delivery of the produce and to provide economic and timely logistics to benefit the farmers during the COVID-19 pandemic

  • COVID-19 impact: CGF postpones 7th season of 2021 Commonwealth Youth Games to 2023

Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) has postponed the 7th season of Commonwealth Youth Games 2021, scheduled to take place from August 1 – 7 2021 in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, to the year 2023 following a clash with Tokyo Olympic 2020 dates postponed by a year due to the coronavirus (Covid-19)

  • Noted playwright Bijay Mishra passed away at 83

Noted playwright, dramatist, scriptwriter and film director Bijay Mishra of Odisha passed away at the age of 83 due to age-related ailments in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. He was born at Santaragadia village in Balasore district, Odisha on July 16, 1936.

  • Ayushman Bharat Diwas 2020: April 30

As part of Gram Swaraj Abhiyan, Ayushman Bharat Diwas is celebrated across the country every year on 30th April, to mark the start of Ayushman Bharat(AB) Yojana, which is also referred as AB-National Health Protection Scheme(AB-NHPM) or ModiCare or AB-Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana(AB-PMJAY) by Prime Minister(PM) Narendra Modi

02 May Current Affairs 2020
  • Manipur black rice, Gorakhpur terracotta & Kovilpatti kadalai mittai gets GI tag

Chak-Hao, the black rice of Manipur which is glutinous rice cultivated in Manipur & is characterised by its special aroma; the terracotta work of Gorakhpur &Kovilpatti kadalai mittai(a peanut candy)has been granted with the Geographical Indication(GI) tag.

  • MoC launched Project Monitoring Unit for early operationalization of coal mines

PMU will act as a consultant for sorting out the issues of allocatees of coal mines so that the coal production may begin at the earliest.

  • DST launched ‘Year of Awareness on Science & Health (YASH)’on health & risk communication focusing COVID-19

It is launched by the National Council for Science & Technology Communication (NCSTC) under DST. Its aim is to convey authentic best practices to the general public to minimize the risk of transmission of virus at all levels, in the absence of vaccines and cure for COVID-19.

  • NLC India Limited, a Navaratna Public Enterprise under the Ministry of Coal commences coal production

Neyveli Lignite Corporation(NLC) India Private Limited ‘Navaratna’ a government of India Enterprise under the Ministry of Coal started the production of Coal for the first time. The coal allocated to the Neyveli Lignite Corporation India Limited(NLCIL) in 2016 with a capacity of 20 million tonne per annum from the Talabira II and III mines of Odisha will suffice the requirements of existing and future coal fired power plants.

  • NBWL permits coal mining in part of Assam’s Dehing Patkai elephant reserve

National Board for Wild Life (NBWL) has permitted the use of 98.59 hectares of land at Saleki, a part of the Dehing Patkai Elephant Reserve in Assam for opencast coal mining project done by North-Easter Coal Field (NECF), a unit of Coal India Limited.

  • RBI extends regulatory benefits under SLF-MF scheme dated 27.4.2020 to all banks

This decision has been taken on the lines of request made by banks to RBI.As we have notified earlier, on April 27, 2020, RBI has initiated a special liquidity facility of Rs 50,000 crore for MFs. The bank claiming these extended regulatory benefits will not be required to avail back-to-back funding from the central bank under the SLF-MF scheme.

  • CCI approves BP Global’s proposed 49% acquisition of Reliance BP Mobility Limited

The Competition Commission of India(CCI) approved the acquisition of 49% of the fully diluted paid-up equity share capital and voting rights in and of Reliance BP Mobility Limited(RBPML) by BP Global Investments Limited(BP Global) under Section 31(1) of the Competition Act.

  • CCI approves proposed acquisition of 100% shares and control of Tech Data Corporation by Tiger Midco LLC

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) approved the proposed acquisition of 100% shares and control of Tech Data Corporation by Tiger Midco LLC. In this regard, Tech Data Corporation (Tech Data) will be acquired by Tiger Midco LLC (Tiger Midco) by way of merger of Tech Data with a wholly owned subsidiary of Tiger Midco, viz., Merger Sub.

01 May Current Affairs 2020
  • Cauvery Water Management Authority brought under the Jal Shakti Ministry: Central government

The central government has brought the Cauvery Water Management Authority under the Jal Shakti Ministry, which was earlier under the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation.

  • National Infrastructure Pipeline submitted Final Report to FinMin; Rs 111 lakh cr projected from FY20 to FY25

The report highlighted policy deficits and challenges in India’s infrastructure sector and recommended reforms to scale up investment in the sector.

What is NIP?
NIP is a first-of-its-kind, whole-of-government exercise to provide world-class infrastructure across the country, and improve the quality of life for all citizens. It aims to improve project preparation, attract investments (both domestic and foreign) into infrastructure.

  • Chhattisgarh tops among other states in providing employment under MGNREGS

According to an official statement by the Rural Development Ministry, Chhattisgarh is 1st state to provide employment to over 18(18.51) lakh unskilled labourers under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme(MGNREGS).

  • India installs 7.3 GW of solar power in CY 2019 & secures world’s 3rd largest solar market: Mercom

According to Mercom India Research’s ‘India Solar Market Leaderboard 2020’ report India has installed 7.3 Giga Watt (GW) of solar power in CY 2019 which consolidates its position as the 3rd largest solar market in the world after China and U.S.

  • USAID announces 3 million USD to support India’s efforts to combat COVID-19

The United States Agency of International Development (USAID), one of the leading aid agency of the government of United States has announced an additional grant of 3 million USD in addition to the 2.9 million USD announced on 6th April 2020 to help India to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and to fund the PAHAL project

  • India ranks 53rd in budget transparency; New Zealand tops: IBP’s Open Budget Survey 2019

According to the 7th edition of ‘Open Budget Survey 2019’ conducted by International Budget Partnership (IBP), India has been ranked at 53rd position among 117 nations in terms of budget transparency and accountability with the score of 49 out of 100.

  • India’s rank downgraded to “Country of Particular Concern (CPC)” in USA’s International Religious Freedom annual report 2020

This is the first time since 2004 that India has been placed in this category for engaging in and tolerating systematic, and ongoing religious freedom violations, as defined by the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA), 1998.
The report which documented significant religious developments during 2019 has placed 14 countries under CPC viz. Burma, China, Eritrea, India, Iran, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Vietnam.

  • Disasters, conflicts trigger 5 million displacements in India in 2019: IDMC

According to a recent report from the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, titled ‘The Global Report on Internal Displacement(GRID 2020)’, nearly 5 million(mn) people were displaced in India in 2019

  • ‘Vikas Abhaya’ loan scheme launched: KVGB

Karnataka Vikas Grameena Bank (KVGB), a regional rural bank’s chairman P Gopi Krishna has launched ‘Vikas Abhaya’ a loan scheme.

  • T S Tirumurti appointed as Ambassador/Permanent Representative of India to United Nations

T S Tirumurti an Indian Foreign Service officer(IFS) of 1985 currently serving as the Secretary,Economic Relations in the Ministry of External Affairs was appointed as the permanent representative of India to the United Nations at New York.

  • Manulife acquired 49% stake in Mahindra AMC for Rs 265 crore

Manulife has invested $35 million or Rs 265 crore in Mahindra AMC. An agreement for the same was inked in June 2019. Mahindra Finance now owns the balance 51% stake in its AMC.</li style=”text-align: justify;”>