CURRENT AND CORPORATE AFFAIRS : 21 AUGUST 2020

CURRENT AND CORPORATE AFFAIRS : 21 AUGUST 2020

COVID-19

(1.) Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat tests positive for coronavirus :- Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat has tested positive for coronavirus. In a tweet, Mr Shekhawat said, he has tested positive for coronavirus infection and was hospitalized on the advice of doctors. The Minister said, those who have come in contact with him in the last few days are advised to get tested and take required precautions.

(2.) 286,000 COVID-19 cases reported in last 24 hours globally :- The number of COVID-19 cases globally has grown by more than 286,000 in the past 24 hours, while over 6,700 patients have died in the same period, according to the data released by the World Health Organization WHO today. The WHO said that the number of COVID-19 cases worldwide crossed the 2 crore mark, while the global death toll is 751,154.

(3.) COVID-19 vaccine nationalism needs to be prevented, says WHO Director-General :- Director-General of the World Health Organization Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has said that COVID19 vaccine nationalism needs to be prevented. The WHO Chief had tweeted that for this reason, WHO is working with governments & the private sector through the ACT-Accelerator to ensure that new innovations are available to everyone, everywhere starting with those at highest risk.

NATIONAL NEWS

(1.) 18th meeting of WMCC on India-China Border Affairs held today :- The 18th meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC) was held today. The Indian delegation was led by Joint Secretary (East Asia) from External Affairs Ministry. The Director General of the Boundary and Oceanic Department of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs led the Chinese delegation. Briefing media, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said the two sides had a candid and in-depth exchange of views on the existing situation in the India-China border areas. They reaffirmed that in accordance with the agreements reached between the two Foreign Ministers and the two Special Representatives, the two sides will continue to sincerely work towards complete disengagement of the troops along the Line of Actual Control in the Western Sector. In this context they agreed to resolve the outstanding issues in an expeditious manner and in accordance with the existing agreements and protocols.

(2.) Ministry of Skill Development, Ministry of Shipping ink MoU for skill development in port & maritime sector :- A Memorandum of Understanding, MoU was signed between Ministry of Skill Development and Ministry of Shipping today for skill development in port and maritime sector. The MoU is aimed at skilling, re-skilling and up-skilling manpower for the growing maritime industry and development of coastal community. Speaking on the occasion, Skill Development Minister Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey said, maritime transport is a critical segment that propels the economic development of the country. He congratulated the Ministry of Shipping for undertaking endeavour to create a job-ready workforce by skilling them and build their competencies up to the global standards.

(3.) Indore wins cleanest city in country award in Swachh Survekshan 2020:- Indore in Madhya Pradesh has been awarded as the cleanest city in the country in the Swachh Survekshan 2020 awards. The city bagged the position for the fourth time in consecutive years. The awards were presented by Union Urban Development Minister Hardeep Singh Puri in a function held virtually today. AIR Correspondent reports that Gujarat’s Surat bagged second position and Navi Mumbai stood at number three. Among the towns along the banks of river Ganga, Varanasi has been awarded the cleanest town award. New Delhi has been awarded as the cleanest capital city in the country. Chhattisgarh was awarded the first place in the states with over 100 cities, while Jharkhand bagged it in the category of states with less than 100 cities. Jalandhar Cantonment Board was conferred the cleanest cantonment board in the country. Ahmedabad in Gujarat was awarded for being the cleanest city with over 40 lakh population.

(4.) Construction of Shri Ram Janmbhoomi Mandir in Ayodhya begins :- The construction of Shri Ram Janmbhoomi Mandir has begun. Engineers from CBRI Roorkee, IIT Madras along with L and T are now testing the soil at the mandir site. In a series of tweets, Shri Ram Janmbhoomi Teerth Kshetra said, the construction work is expected to finish in 36 to 40 months. The Mandir will be built by adhering to India’s ancient and traditional construction techniques. It will also be built to sustain earthquakes, storms and other natural calamities. Iron will not be used in the construction of the Mandir.

(5.) India ranks first in the number of organic farmers :- The growth story of organic farming is unfolding with increasing demand not only in India but also globally. India ranks first in number of organic farmers and ninth in terms of area under organic farming. Sikkim became the first state in the world to become fully organic and other states including Tripura and Uttarakhand have set similar targets. North East India has been traditionally following organic farming and the usage of chemicals in the region is reported to be far less than in the rest of the country. The tribal and island territories are also being nurtured to continue their organic cultivation.

(6.) Health Ministry’s ‘eSanjeevani’ digital platform records 2 lakh consultations :- The ‘e-Sanjeevani’ digital platform of the Health Ministry has completed two lakh tele-consultations. This milestone was achieved within a short span of ten days since the 9th of August when Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan presided over a meeting to commemorate the completion of 1.5 lakh tele-consultations. The e-Sanjeevani platform has proved its utility and easy access for the caregivers and the medical community and those seeking health care services in the times of COVID.

STATE NEWS

(1.) Vijaynagar, one of the remotest corners in Arunachal Pradesh, gets mobile connectivity :- Vijaynagar in Arunachal Pradesh, one of the remotest and easternmost part of the country, has been connected with mobile connectivity this month. Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited has installed a network tower which has become functional now. The 2G mobile service that Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited, BSNL launched in Vijaynagar area on first of August this month will be a boon for the people of this isolated place. Situated in the easternmost corner of Arunachal Pradesh bordering Myanmar, Vijaynagar is not connected with any motorable road. The nearest place with a road head is Miao, which is located 157 Km away from the circle. The State Govt and the Indian Air Force have extended necessary help and other logistic support to the BSNL for transportation of the mobile & satellite equipment.

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

(1.) Indian markets open for Bangladesh with Duty Free Quota Free Access for 100% tariff lines except Alcohol and Tobacco: High Commissioner Riva Ganguly Das :- India has opened its huge markets to Bangladesh under SAFTA since 2011 allowing Bangladesh exporters Duty Free and Quota Free (DFQF) market access for 100 percent tariff lines except alcohol and tobacco, said Riva Ganguly Das, High Commissioner of India to Bangladesh. Highlighting the growing export from Bangladesh, she said that Bangladesh exports registered a significant growth of over 42 percent in the Financial Year 2018-19. Speaking at a webinar on Connectivity for Growth, Prosperity and Development in Dhaka on Thursday, Riva Ganguly Das said that connectivity has been an important focus of the mutually beneficial relation between India and Bangladesh. She further said that the joint study for a bilateral Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement between the two countries is likely to be completed this year.Expressing happiness at the increasing consultative dialogue between the business community, Chambers and think tanks High Commissioner Riva Ganguly Das said that it will further facilitate quick recovery and allow them to explore new business opportunities.

BUSINESS AND FINANCE

(1.) Banks approve loans worth Rs. one lakh 50 thousand crore to mitigate Covid-19 distress :- Public and Private sectors banks have sanctioned loans worth over Rs. one lakh 50 thousand crore under the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme. Finance Ministry said, more than Rs. one lakh crore has already been disbursed. The scheme was announced by the government as a part of Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Package, to mitigate the distress caused by lockdown due to COVID-19 by providing credit to different sectors, especially MSMEs. Under the scheme, Public Sector Banks have sanctioned loans of over Rs. 76 thousand crore and out of which more than Rs. 56 thousand crore has already been disbursed. The Ministry said, Private Sector Banks have sanctioned loans of over Rs. 74 thousand 715 crore and out of which more than Rs 45 thousand crore has already been disbursed. The top lenders under the Scheme are State Bank of India, Canara Bank, Punjab National Bank, Bank of India, Union Bank of India and HDFC Bank Limited.

SPORTS

(1.) Prague Challenger: India’s Sumit Nagal loses to Stanislas Wawrinka in QF :- India’s Sumit Nagal lost to world number 17 and three-time Grand Slam winner Stanislas Wawrinka from Switzerland in the quarterfinal of the Prague Challenger tennis tournament today. Nagal made an emphatic start, winning the first set 6-2 in 36 minutes. In the second set, however, Wawrinka fought back to claim the set 6-0. The Swiss continued to assert his domination, winning the match 2-6, 6-0, 6-1. The 22-year-old Indian, who is ranked 127 in the world and seeded sixth in the tournament, had defeated Czech Jiri Lehecka in the round of 16. Later in the day, Nagal will also feature in the doubles quarterfinal with his partner, Belarusian Ilya Ivashka. Earlier, N Sriram Balaji who partnered Belgium’s Kimmer Coppejans lost in the quarterfinals of the doubles events. Another Indian player in the fray, Divij Sharan, who has partnered with Dutchman Robin Haase, will compete against the Czech pair of Jiri Lehecka and Tomas Machac.

Thanks for Reading Current and Corporate Affairs : 21 August 2020

Compiled By : CS Surbhi Saxena

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