Current Affairs 28 & 29 June 2020

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MoS of Defence Shri Shripad Naik Inaugurates Two-day Defence Conclave 2020 in Gujarat

Shripad Naik inaugurates "Defence Conclave 2020 Gujarat"

On June 25 2020, Minister of State(MoS) of Defence Shri Shripad Naik inaugurated the two days ‘Defence Conclave 2020’ in Gujarat through video conferencing. The conclave was jointly organised by Confederation of Indian Industry(CII), Gujarat and Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers(SIDM).

Conclave:-

  • The Conclave is held in the defence and aerospace manufacturing sector.
  • Focusing in strong defence is a great economic growth and helps in job creation in manufacturing.
  • The saturation of markets in other sectors is responsible for directing interest towards the defence sector and promises sustained business opportunities.
  • It aims to strengthen the ‘Make in India’ initiative, and increase defence manufacturing.

Key Points:-

  • The vision of the central government towards the defence sector has gained the attention of Micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs).
  • The coastline of Gujarat is 1600 kms with well-connected ports.
  • There are more than 8000 MSME serving the Ordnance Factories and defence Public Sector Companies in Gujarat 
  • It has emerged as an excellent infrastructure facility that offers both forward and backward supply chain linkages to the defence and aerospace manufacturing sector.

About Gujarat:
Capital: Gandhinagar
Chief Minister: Vijay Rupani
Governor: Acharya Devvrat

President Promulgates Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020 amending Banking Regulation Act, 1949

President Kovind promulgates Banking Regulation (Amendment ...

On June 26, 2020, the President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind in exercising the powers conferred under clause (1) of article 123 of the Constitution has promulgated the Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020 which will amend section 45, and 56 of Banking Regulation Act, 1949 as applicable to Cooperative Banks. This promulgation followed the Cabinet approval on June 24, 2020 regarding an ordinance to bring nearly 1,482 urban and 58 multi state cooperative banks under the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) supervision. Therefore, RBI’s power applied to scheduled banks, will now apply for cooperative banks as well.

  • It was introduced in Lok Sabha (House of the People) on March 3, 2020.
  • Its objective is to protect the interests of depositors and strengthen cooperative banks by improving governance for sound banking regulation, and by ensuring professionalism and enabling their access to capital.

Key Points:

-The amendments do not affect existing powers of the State Registrars of Co-operative Societies under state co-operative laws.

-These will also not apply to Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS) or co-operative societies whose primary object and principal business is long-term finance for agricultural development, and which do not use the word “bank” or “banker” or “banking” and do not act as drawees of cheques.

Current Scenario:

-Currently, co-operative banks come under dual regulation of the RBI and the Registrar of Co-operative Societies (RCS). The above move has been taken after several instances of fraud and serious financial irregularities, including the major scam at the Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank in 2019. 

About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Formation– 1 April 1935
Governor– Shaktikanta Das
Deputy Governors– 4 (Bibhu Prasad Kanungo, Mahesh Kumar Jain, Michael Debabrata Patra, one is yet to be appointed).

Government Introduced New Floating Rate Savings Bonds, 2020 (Taxable) Scheme w.e.f July 1, 2020

floating rate savings bonds 2020: Government launches 7.15 ...

On June 26, 2020, the Government has notified the new Floating Rate Savings Bonds, 2020 (Taxable) Scheme in place of 7.75% Savings (Taxable) Bonds, 2018, with effect from July 1, 2020. The 7.75% Savings (Taxable) Bonds, 2018 Scheme was ceased for subscription from the close of banking business on May 28, 2020. Click Here to Read: Government withdrew 7.75% Savings (Taxable) Bonds scheme due to declining interest rates

  • The Floating Rate Savings Bonds, 2020 (Taxable) Scheme is going to issue a floating rate, taxable savings bond for an initial coupon of 7.15%, payable on January 1, 2021.
  • These bonds will be issued by Reserve Bank India (RBI) on behalf of the Government of India (GoI).
  • The key difference in both schemes is that the earlier one was fixed, and now this is going to be floating. This will work as an inflation hedge while saving the government from higher cost when rates are low.

Following table listed the key features of scheme:

ItemDetails
Eligibility The bonds will be available only for resident Indians, or to a Hindu undivided family (HUF), not for Non Resident Indians (NRI)
Receiving OfficesThe bond will be available at State Bank of India (SBI) and other nationalised banks, as well as four private sector banks viz. Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI) Bank Ltd, Axis Bank Ltd, HDFC (Housing Development Finance Corporation ) Bank Ltd and Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI) Bank Ltd.
Limit Minimum Amount: Rs 1000/- with no maximum limit 
Form of the BondsThe Bonds will be issued only in the electronic form and held at the credit of the holder in an account called Bond Ledger Account (BLA), opened with the Receiving Office.
Interest Rate (Floating)The interest on the bonds is payable semi-annually on 1st Jan and 1st July every year. There is no option to pay interest on a cumulative basis.
Repayment/TenorThe Bonds shall be repayable on the expiration of 7 years from the date of issue. Premature redemption shall be allowed for specified categories of senior citizens.
Tax treatmentInterest on the Bonds will be taxable under the Income-tax Act, 1961 as amended from time to time.

Points to be noted:

-Subscription to the bonds will be in the form of cash (up to Rs 20,000), drafts, cheques or any electronic mode. 

-The bonds won’t be transferable, except to a nominee or legal heir in case of death of the holder of the bonds.

Click Here for Official Link-PIB

Click Here for Official Link-RBI

About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Formation– 1 April 1935
Governor– Shaktikanta Das
Deputy Governors– 4 (Bibhu Prasad Kanungo, Mahesh Kumar Jain, Michael Debabrata Patra, one is yet to be appointed).

Nasha Mukt Bharat: Annual Action Plan (2020-21) for 272 Most Affected Districts E-Launched by Rattan Lal Kataria

Nasha Mukt Bharat: Annual Action Plan (2020-21) for 272 Most ...

On June 26, 2020, to celebrate “International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking” on the theme Better knowledge for better care, Rattan Lal Kataria, Minister of State (MoS) for Social Justice and Empowerment has virtually launched “Nasha Mukt Bharat: Annual Action Plan (2020-21) for 272 Most Affected Districts” from New Delhi. He also released Logo and Tagline for National Action Plan for Drug Demand Reduction (NAPDDR) for 2018-2025 and 9 Video Spots produced for Drug Abuse Prevention.

  • Rs 260 crores has been allocated for NAPDDR for the year FY 2020-21 as compared to Rs 110 crores for FY 2019-20.
  • It should be noted that the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment is the nodal Ministry for drug demand reduction which coordinates and monitors all aspects of drug abuse prevention.

Participants during launch: Secretary, M/o SJ&E Shri R. Subramaniam and Joint Secretary Ms. Radhika Chakravarty were present. Representatives from State governments and NGOs also participated online.

About Nasha Mukt Bharat Annual Action Plan for 2020-21

-As a part of Nasha Mukt Bharat Annual Action Plan for 2020-21 three combining efforts of the Narcotics Bureau, Outreach/Awareness by Social Justice and Treatment through the Health Dept will be launched.

-The aim of the plan is to reach out to Children and Youth for awareness about ill effect of drug use; Increase community participation and public cooperation; Supporting Government Hospitals for opening up De- addiction Centers in addition to existing Ministry Supported De-addiction Centers (IRCAs); and Conducting Training programme for participants.

Efforts by Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment:

-It provides financial assistance to NGOs (non-government organizations) across the country for running de-addiction centres.

-Ministry has also set up a 24×7 National Toll Free drug de-addiction helpline number 1800110031 to help the victims of drug abuse, their family and society at large.

Click Here for Official List of Districts

About Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment:
Union Minister– Thaawarchand Gehlot (Constituency- Shajapur, Madhya Pradesh)

Shri Mandaviya Inaugurates India’s 1st ever Virtual ‘Healthcare & Hygiene EXPO 2020’ organised by FICCI

Shri Mandaviya inaugurates India's one of the largest 1st Virtual ...

On June 22, 2020, In a digital e-governance push, the Minister of State for Shipping (Independent charge) and Chemicals & Fertilisers Shri Mansukh Mandaviya has launched webinar of India’s first 5-day long virtual exhibition and conference, ‘Virtual Healthcare and Hygiene Expo 2020’ (VHHE), organised by FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry)and supported by Ministry of AYUSH(Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy), Govt of India(GoI).

  • The event, live daily from 22nd to 26th  June 2020 with the participation of over 1,000 international buyers from 120 countries with 147 exhibitors, was meant to create a self-reliant ecosystem in the Pharmaceuticals and Health & Hygiene Sector by increasing domestic production.

Focus of the Exhibition:

The key focus sectors of the exhibition include- (i) AYUSH & Wellness (ii) Pharmaceuticals (iii) Medical Devices (iv) Medical Textile & Consumables (v) Hygiene & Sanitisation.

The key components of expo:

The expo showcased display of focus sectors, Sector specific webinars, Pre-fixed B2B meetings, Free to attend exhibition for the visitors, Innovative product display options, Participants can interact with buyers from the comfort of their home / office

Various initiatives of Central Government:

According to Mandaviya, various initiatives has been launched in Health, hygiene and sanitation sector by the prime minister Narendra Modi since 2014 such as Ayushman Bharat scheme (which covers 10 crore family for healthcare), Swatch Bharat Abhiyan, Suvidha Sanitary Napkin & Jan Aushadhi stores which were providing quality medicines at affordable rate for everyone while reiterating about the government policy for setting up of Bulk Drug Park and Medical Device Park in India.

About Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers:Headquarters: New Delhi   
Cabinet Minister– D. V. Sadananda Gowda

At 26th position, Bengaluru Becomes India’s Only City in Top 30 Global Startup Ecosystems Ranking 2020 Released by Startup Genome

On June 25, 2020, According to the report, ‘Global Startup Ecosystem Report (GSER) 2020; the New Normal for the Global Startup Economy and the Impact of COVID-19’ released by Startup GenomeBangalore, popularly known as the startup capital of India, has added another milestone as it become the only city in the country to be included in the world’s top-30 startup ecosystem ranking & placed 26th position. At the same time, the nation’s capital Delhi has been ranked 36th in the list.
While California’s Silicon Valley topped the list, which ranks the top ecosystems by a number of metrics including performance, funding, connectedness, talent and knowledge.

Here’s the list of top 3 Global Startup Ecosystems ranking:

RankCity Name
26Bangalore
36Delhi
1Silicon Valley
2 (tie)New York City
London

Financial activity like Paris & Singapore in Bengaluru:

As per the report, Startup companies in Bangalore city get good facilities and financial activities like Paris and Singapore.
While, Delhi ranked well for the volume and complexity of patent creation in the analysis.

Key Highlights:

i.As per the report, 30% of the top ecosystems coms from Asia-Pacific region region, compared to 20% in 2012. Out of the 11 new ecosystems that included into the top ecosystems list, 6 are from the Asia-Pacific region.

ii.Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic, startup firms have found themselves in a stock of shockwaves including capital shock and demand.
Around 72% of startups witnessed their revenue drop since the beginning of the crisis, with the average startup facing a decline of 32%.

Mumbai tops the list of parallel top 100 emerging startup ecosystem ranking:

Mumbai ranked first in  a parallel “100 emerging ecosystem rankings 2020” followed by Jakarta, Zurich.
Other Indian cities that made it to the list include Hyderabad, Chennai and Pune.

Here’s the list of top 3 cities in Emerging Ecosystem Ranking:

RankCity nameCountryContinent
1MumbaiIndia Asia-Pacific
2JakartaIndonesiaAsia-Pacific
3ZurichSwitzerland Europe
51-60Chennai India Asia-Pacific
71-80Hyderabad India Asia-Pacific
71-80Pune India Asia-Pacific

About the ranking:Startup Genome collected data and information from Google Trends, GitHub and Meetup & also considered the impact of coronavirus crisis on startups and public policy actions taken by governments to support startup ecosystems.

About Startup Genome:Founder– J.F. Gauthier
It is a California-headquartered innovation policy advisory and research firm.

THE Young University Ranking 2020 with 2 Indian Institutes in top 100

IISc scraps Rs 2,000-crore accelerator project at C'Durga | Deccan ...

On 24th June 2020, The Times Higher Education(THE) released THE Young University Rankings 2020 for the universities which are 50 years old or younger. 
Two Indian Institutes secured their ranks in the top 100 with IIT Ropar, the best 12year old  institutes of India at 62nd rank and IIT Indore at 64th rank.
Key Points:
i.The Indian Insttitute of Science Education and Research (Pune) and  Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar ranked 101-150.
ii.Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, IIT-Bhubaneswar, IIT Guwahati and IIT Hyderabad secured 151-200th rank.
iii.Pondicherry University ranks 201-250th Rank in the list.
The Parameter of judging:

  • Teaching(30%)
  • Research(30%)
  • Citation (30%)
  • International Outlook(7.5%)
  • Industrial output(2.5%)

Top 5 Universities:

RankNameCountry
1The Hong Kong University of Science and TechnologyHong Kong
2Nanyang Technological UniversitySingapore
3Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research UniversityFrance
4Sant’Anna School of Advanced StudiesItaly
5Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST)South Korea

About THE:
Editor– John Gill
Location– London, United Kingdom

PhonePe Partnered with ICICI Bank on UPI multi-bank model

PhonePe claims Rs 4000 crore worth of transactions post outage

Flipkart-owned PhonePe announced that  it has partnered with ICICI Bank on the Unified Payments Interface(UPI) multi-bank model, to provide its users the option to create and use multiple UPI IDs with ICICI Bank’s “@ibl” handle and YES Bank’s ‘@ybl’ handle on the PhonePe app.

  • Through this partnership ICICI Bank has become the second official UPI partner of PhonePe after Yes Bank.

Key Points

i.PhonePe has over 200 million registered users. It gives the option to use multiple UPI IDs to ensure a seamless transaction for the customers even if any one bank’s handle is temporarily out of service as was the case when the Yes Bank’s handle was suspended in March.

ii.PhonePe users can access the ICICI Bank’s handle through a new version of the app. The update will be available in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store soon.

iii.Through this partnership, ICICI Bank and PhonePay will be able to use their immense domain strengths to empower customers to a seamless and simple digital payment experience.

Note:

i.ICICI Bank is also the UPI partner for Google Pay, MakeMyTrip, Mi Pay and TrueCaller.

ii.PhonePe in partnership with ICICI Lombard, announced the launch of a comprehensive, industry-first domestic multi-trip insurance cover, which is only available for PhonePe users.

About PhonePe:
Headquarters– Bengaluru, Karnataka
Chief Executive Officer(CEO)– Sameer Nigam

About ICICI:
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Managing Director & CEO– Sandeep Bakhshi

SIDBI Set Up ‘Swavalamban Crisis Responsive Fund’ to Facilitate Free Onboarding of MSMEs on TReDS platform

Sidbi Sets Up Fund to Facilitate Free Onboarding of MSMEs on TReDS ...

On June 26, 2020 Small Industries Development Bank of India(SIDBI) has informed that it has set up ‘Swavalamban Crisis Responsive Fund’(SCRF), an open-ended fund to facilitate free onboarding of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises(MSMEs) on Trade Receivables Discounting System(TReDS) platform.

Key info

i.The SCRF is under Swavalamban Resource Facility, where SIDBI partners with the Department for International Development (DFID), United Kingdom.

ii.The free onboarding of MSMEs will be available till September 30, 2020. SIDBI targets to onboard 10,000 during the period.

iii.Generally, an MSME must pay a fee of Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000 to register on a TReDS platform. Now, this fund will be utilised to offset the cost of registration fee.

About TReDs

i.TReDS is an electronic platform where receivables of MSMEs are drawn against buyers like large corporates, public sector undertakings and government departments among others. They are financed by multiple financiers at competitive rates through an auction mechanism. 

ii.The 3 TReDS platforms are Receivables Exchange of India Ltd.(RXIL), M1xchange and Invoicemart. It enables MSMEs to access the working capital through invoice discounting via multiple financiers.

About SIDBI:
Headquarters– Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
Chairman & Managing Director– Mohammad Mustafa

SOLV partnered with Standard Chartered Bank to Launch Credit Card for MSMEs

SOLV Partners Standard Chartered Bank to Launch MSME Credit Card

SOLV, a B2B (business to business) digital platform for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), has launched a tailor-made credit card in partnership with Standard Chartered Bank, India. SOLV MSME Credit Card provides MSME clients with a ready means to meet ongoing business expenses including supplier payments, fuel, logistics, purchase of raw material, utility payments and working capital outlays.

  • Importantly, SOLV, registered as Standard Chartered Research & Technology India Pvt. Ltd., is a fully-owned entity of the London-headquartered Standard Chartered Group.

Key Points: 

-MSMEs clients would not be charged any credit card joining fee, and the card comes with cashback, including 5% cashback on fuel transactions, which would effectively make more than two litres of petrol free on a fuel spend of Rs. 4000 every month.

-The SOLV platform will help small businesses trade goods with each other and expand their customer base across India. SOLV’s mission is to enable MSMEs digitally and find innovative solutions for their challenges.

About SOLV:
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)– Nitin Mittal
Headquarter– Bengaluru, Karnataka

About Standard Chartered Bank:
Chairman– Jose Maria Vinals Iniguez
Headquarters– London, United Kingdom

World Bank Grants $500 Million to Bangladesh For Cross Country Road Projects

World Bank $500 Million to Bangladesh For Cross Country Road Projects

On June 23, 2020, World Bank (WB), an international financial institution, has sanctioned $ 500 million for “Western Economic Corridor and Regional Enhancement (WeCARE) Phase I project” to improve road connectivity in Bangladesh’s Jashore-Jhenaidah corridor, which consists of four western districts to connect with the capital Dhaka as well as with India and Bhutan.

WeCARE Phase I project:

  • It is a $1.4bn programme to convert the 110km long two-lane road, Bhomra-Satkhira-Navaron & Jahore-Jhenaidah, to a four-lane highway in western Bangladesh.
  • In the first phase of the project, a 48km section of the N7 highway between Jashore and Jhenaidah will be upgraded & Rehabilitation of around 600km of rural roads and 32 rural markets / growth centres are also part of the work package.     
  • Besides, In order to help achieve the goal of Digital Bangladesh, the project will also include fiber optic cable on the side of the highway, so that people can get internet facility at a lower cost.
  • Overall, the project will support the Bangladesh government’s plan to develop a 260-km economic corridor in the western part of the country and benefit more than two crore people in the area, accelerate the economy of the districts, connect farms to markets, connect the western region as well as Dhaka with neighboring countries.

Benefits: The project will create employment for local communities through connecting rural roads to the market and civil work for national highways.

Background: The World Bank is one of the first development partners to support Bangladesh after independence. Bangladesh currently has the largest World Bank IDA (International Development Association) program of over $13.5 billion. Since Bangladesh gained independence, the WB has shown commitment to repay over 31 billion dollars in grants, interest-free and concessional loans.

About World Bank:Headquarters– Washington, D.C., United States
President– David Malpass

About Bangladesh:Capital– Dhaka
Currency– Bangladeshi taka
President– Abdul Hamid
Prime Minister– Sheikh Hasina

Himachal Pradesh panchayati raj department wins 1st prize under e-Panchayat Puraskars 2020 for effective use of e-applications

Himachal Pradesh panchayati raj department wins 1st prize under  e-Panchayat Puraskars 2020 for effective implementation of e-applications, developed by the central government & other applications developed by the state government. The prize will be given by Union Ministry of Panchayati Raj.

Key Points

All 3,226 panchayats of Himachal Pradesh were provided with internet facilities to help people access various services online like  family registration, registration of birth, death and marriages.

About e-panchayat puraskar

The e-panchayat puraskar is given to states  that have made maximum use of Information Technology to monitor the works of the panchayat

Note

The Union ministry of panchayati raj is making efforts to bring transparency, efficiency and accountability in the functioning of gram panchayats through the use of information and communication technology(ICT).

About Panchayat Raj ministry
Union Minister– Narendra Singh Tomar

About Himachal Pradesh:
Capital– Shimla, Dharamsala
Chief Minister– Jairam Thakur
Governor– Bandaru Dattatraya

6 District Hospitals of J&K wins Kayakalap Award for their Achievement in Health Sector

6 J&K public healthcare facilities bag 'Kayakalp Award ...

On 24th June 2020, 6 Districts hospitals(DH) of the union territory of Jammu & Kashmir won the Kayakalap Award for their achievements in the health sector and secured positions in the best hospital category 2019-2020.
Kayakalp Award:
i.The award was instituted as a part of  the “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan” on 15th May 2015 to recognise the public health facilities that exhibit high levels of cleanliness, hygiene and infection control measures.
ii.DH Reasi and 3 other  district hospitals from Jammu division won the cash award of Rs 50 Lakh each and the Government Hospital(GH) Gandhi Nagar, DH Udhampur and DH Poonch won the commendation award(Rs. 3 Lakh each).
Community Health Centres (CHC) category:
The three CHCs of Jammu division including CHC Ramnagar are declared 2nd and CHC Katra (Reasi) and CHC Bhaderwah (Doda) got the commendation award.
Primary Health Centers(PHC) and Urban Primary Health Centres categories(UPHC):
UPHC Shashtri Nagar in Jammu district,PHC Budi (Katra), PHC Ransoo (Reasi), PHC Tikri (Udhampur) and PHC Rattanpur (Samba) won the award 
PHC Laiter (Reasi), PHC Sumb (Samba), PHC Barnara, PHC Majalta, PHC Hartaryan (Udhampur) won the commendation award.

Overview of 47th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards of NATAS

Reason Watch 2020 Daytime Emmy Awards | Soaps.com

On 26th June 2020, the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences(NATAS) announced the winners of the 47th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards, the presentation was hosted by the Sharon Osbourne, Shery Underwood, Eve, Carrie Ann Inaba and Marie Osmond,the hosts of CBS’ Daytime Emmy Award-winning show THE TALK which was  broadcasted on the CBS Television Network.

Note:

This year the awards were presented to the recipients over a virtual platform due to the current COVID-19 situation.

Key Points:

i.Daytime Emmy Awards is to recognise the achievements in daytime television programs and were presented to the individuals and programs broadcasted between 2.00am and 6.00am.

ii.This year’s award was produced by NATAS and Associated Television International (ATI).

iii.19 categories of awards including Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Morning Show, Outstanding Culinary Program, Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show, Outstanding Actor and Actress in a Drama Series were presented in the broadcast.

iv.Following the broadcast an additional 24 categories were announced in the social media platforms such as facebook, twitter etc.

v.The votes for the awards were tabulated by accounting firms of  Lutz and Carr CPAs, LLP. 

Winners of 47th Daytime Emmy Award:

Categories announced on broadcast:

CategoryWinner
Outstanding Drama SeriesThe Young and the Restless (CBS)
Outstanding Digital Drama SeriesThe Bay The Series (Amazon Prime Video)
Outstanding Culinary SeriesGiada Entertains (Food Network)
Outstanding Game ShowJeopardy! (Syndicated)
Outstanding Legal/Courtroom ProgramThe People’s Court (Syndicated)
Outstanding Morning ShowToday Show (NBC)
Outstanding Informative Talk ShowThe View (ABC)
Outstanding Entertainment Talk ShowThe Ellen DeGeneres Show (Syndicated)
Outstanding Entertainment News ShowEntertainment Tonight (Syndicated)
Outstanding Special Class SpecialSesame Street’s 50th Anniversary Celebration (HBO)
Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actress in a Drama SeriesHeather Tom as Katie Logan from The Bold and the Beautiful (CBS)
Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor in a Drama SeriesJason Thompson as Billy Abbott from The Young and the Restless (CBS)
Outstanding Performance by a Supporting Actress in a Drama SeriesTamara Braun as Dr Kim Nero from General Hospital (ABC)
Outstanding Performance by a Supporting Actor in a Drama SeriesBryton James as Devon Hamilton from  The Young and the Restless (CBS)
Outstanding Young Performer in a Drama SeriesOlivia Rose Keegan as Claire Brady from Days of Our Lives (NBC)
Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show HostKelly Clarkson of The Kelly Clarkson Show (Syndicated)
Outstanding Game Show HostAlex Trebek of Jeopardy! (Syndicated)
Outstanding Writing Team for a Drama Series      The Bold and the BeautifulHead Writer – Bradley P. BellCo-Head Writer – Michael MinnisWriters:Patrick Mulcahey, Adam Dusevoir, Shannon Bradley, Michele Val Jean,Rex M. Best, Tracey Ann Kelly, Mark Pinciotti (CBS)
Outstanding Directing Team for a Drama Series    General HospitalDirectors:Frank Valentini, Larry Carpenter, William Ludel, Scott McKinsey, Gary Tomlin,Phideaux Xavier, Denise Van Cleave, Tina Keller (ABC)

Categories announced on Social Media:

Category Winner
Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama SeriesEva LaRue from The Young and the Restless (CBS)
Outstanding Daytime Promotional Announcement – TopicalJeopardy! (Syndicated)
Outstanding Daytime Promotional Announcement – Brand ImageCampaign – Network or ProgramShe-Ra and the Princesses of Power (Digital Release)
Outstanding Writing for a Special Class SpecialSesame Street’s 50th Anniversary Celebration Head Writer – Ken ScarboroughWriter – Christine Ferraro(HBO)
Outstanding Directing for a Talk, Entertainment News or Morning ShowToday Show with Hoda & Jenna Director – Lee Miller(NBC)
Outstanding Directing for a Game ShowThe Price Is Right Director – Adam Sandler (CBS)
Outstanding Music Direction and Composition for a Drama orDigital Drama SeriesDays of Our Lives Music Supervisors – Paul Antonelli, Steve ReinhardtComposers – Ken Corday, D. Brent Nelson(NBC)
Outstanding Original Song“The Bad Guys?” from Brainwashed By Toons Composer – Gregory James JenkinsLyricists – Jason Alexander, Neil Garguilo, Dwayne Colbert, Hughie Stone Fish(funnyordie.com)
Outstanding Casting for a Drama or Digital Drama SeriesEastsiders (Netflix)
Outstanding Lighting Direction for a Drama or Digital Drama SeriesThe Bold and the Beautiful Lighting Directors – Patrick Cunniff, Phil Callan (CBS) &DARK/WEB Lighting Directors – Vasiliki Constaninou, Avery Holliday (Amazon Prime Video)
Outstanding Lighting DirectionThe Kelly Clarkson Show Lighting Designer – Darren Langer(Syndicated)
Outstanding Technical Team for a Drama SeriesGeneral Hospital Technical Directors – Kevin Carr, Chuck AbateCamera Operators – Craig Camou, Barbara Langdon, Dean Cosanella, Antonio Simone(ABC)
Outstanding Technical TeamSesame Street’s 50th Anniversary Celebration Technical Director – Tom GuadarramaCamera Operators – Frank Biondo, Jerry Cancel, Shaun HarkinsSenior Video – James Meek (HBO)
Outstanding Multiple Camera Editing for a Drama or Digital Drama SeriesGeneral HospitalSenior Editor – Peter Fillmore (ABC)
Outstanding Live and Direct to Tape Sound Mixing for a Drama SeriesThe Young and the Restless (CBS)
Outstanding Live and Direct to Tape Sound MixingThe Price Is Right (CBS)
Outstanding Art Direction/Set Decoration/Scenic Designfor a Drama or Digital Drama SeriesThe Young and the Restless Production Designer – David HoffmannArt Director – Jennifer Savala
Outstanding Art Direction/Set Decoration/Scenic DesignThe Kelly Clarkson Show SyndicatedProduction Designer – James ConnellyArt Director – David Eckert
Outstanding Costume Design/Styling The Real Lead Wardrobe Stylist – Oakley Stevenson(Syndicated)
Outstanding Costume Design for a Drama or Digital Drama SeriesThe Bold and the Beautiful Costume Designer – Glenda Maddox (CBS)
Outstanding Hairstyling for a Drama SeriesThe Young and the RestlessHair Stylists – Regina Rodriguez, Adriana Lucio, Lauren Mendoza, Vanessa Bragdon,Dorchelle Stafford, Jackie Zavala (CBS)
Outstanding HairstylingThe Real Head Hairstylist – Roberta Gardener-Rogers(Syndicated)
Outstanding Makeup for a Drama SeriesThe Young and the Restless Head Makeup Artist – Patricia Denney (CBS)
Outstanding MakeupThe Talk Makeup Artists – Gabbi Pascua, Jude Alaca, Marilyn Spiegel, Dell McDonald, Michelle Daurio, Ernesto Casillas, Brianna Schwep (CBS)

About NATAS:
Headquarters– Los Angeles, California, United States of America
Founded– 1957

Union Minister Shri Narendra Singh Tomar launches Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan web portal

Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan - प्रधानमंत्री गरीब ...

On 26 June 2020, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, Union Minister of Rural Development, Panchayati Raj and Agriculture & Farmers welfare, launched a web portal of the Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan (GKRA) through video conferencing from New Delhi.

Sadhvi niranjan jyoti, MoS Rural Development and Shri Nagendra Nath Sinha, Secretary of Rural Development along with 116 Central Nodal officers attended the video conference.

GKRA:-

  • The GKRA was launched with coordination of 12 ministries for 25 categories of works to be completed in 125 days and allotted with Rs 50,000 crore .
  • The GKRA provides employment for four months to the state returned skilled workers.
  • The Programme will be implemented in 116 districts of six states (Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Odisha and Uttar Pradesh) with a total outlay of Rs 50,000.
  • It provides information about all the components of the abhiyan District wise and scheme wise) and enables monitoring the works undergone in the scheme.

In the workshop for the Central Nodal Officers of 116 districts Shri Nagendra Nath Sinha outlined the roles and responsibilities of the Ministries, state governments, District administrations towards the GKRA.

About GKRA:
Launched on: June 20, 2020
Launched By: Shri Narendra Modi

Indian Navy Inducts Advanced Torpedo Decoy System ‘Maareech’ Indigenously Developed by DRDO labs-NPOL & NSTL

Navy inducts indigenously developed Torpedo Decoy System..

On June 26, 2020, Indian Navy inducted an Advanced Torpedo Decoy System (ATDS) namely ‘Maareech’ that is capable of being fired from all frontline warships. It is equipped with sonars and towed and expendable decoys, which are capable of detecting, confusing, diverting and decoying the incoming torpedoes.

  • The design and development of this ATDS have been done by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) labs viz. Naval Physical and Oceanographic Laboratory (NPOL), Kochi in Kerala and the Naval Science and Technological Laboratory (NSTL), Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh (AP).
  • On the other hand, the Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), a Defence Public Sector Undertaking (PSU), would undertake the production of this decoy system. 

Key Points:

-Maareech system consists of mainly four subsystems i.e. Wet end system, Winch System, On-board Electronics and System Software. 

-The prototype of the Maareech system was installed onboard a naval platform and had successfully completed all user evaluation trials and demonstrated the features as per the Naval Staff Qualification Requirements (NSQRs).

– The decoy helps in exhausting the energy of the torpedo by running the later through long and ineffective course and prevents them from homing in to the targeted platform with its advanced counter-measure capabilities.

-It’s induction has given the major fillip to the Government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative.

About Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO):
Headquarter– New Delhi
Chairman– Dr G. Satheesh Reddy 

About Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL):
Headquarter– Bengaluru, Karnataka
Chairman and Managing Director (CMD)– Venkateswara Gowtama Mannava

Astronomers of RedDots Team Discovered Super Earths Gliese 887b and Gliese 887c Near Red Dwarf 

Exoplanet breakthrough: Nearby super-Earths are perfect place to ...

In the research of The RedDots team of Astronomers led by the University of Göttingen (Master – Georg-August-Universität Göttingen), Germany detected two super Earths Gliese 887b and Gliese 887c orbiting around the Gliese 887, the brightest red dwarf star in the sky. The results of the research are published in the journal Science.

Note:

Dr Sandra Jeffers,is the  lead author of the study from the University of Göttingen.

The RedDots team collaborated with Australian astronomers at UNSW Sydney, Macquarie University and University of Southern Queensland.

Red Dwarf:

Gliese 887, the closest stars to the Sun which is around 11 Light years away from the Sun.

The size of the red dwarf is about half the size of the Sun.

Facts of Gliese 887:

  1. The Gliese 887 has few starspots, relatively inactive than the Sun, which implies that the discovered planets could be expected to retain their atmospheres.
  2. The brightness of the star is constant, which helps to detect the atmospheres of the super earths using the James Webb Space Telescope, which is yet to be launched.

The Research:

The RedDots team monitored the red dwarf at the European Southern Observatory, Chile using the HARPS Spectrograph.

The team combined the data with the data from Anglo-Australian Planet Search (using the 3.9m Anglo-Australian Telescope), the Planet finder Spectrograph (on Cerro Las Campanas in Chile) and the HIRES instrument on the Keck telescopes on Maunakea, Hawaii.

Doppler Wobble:

Doppler Wobble is the technique used by the RedDots team, to measure the minute back and forth wobble (unsteady movements) of the star due to the gravitational pull of the planets.

The regular signals corresponding to the orbital period of 9.3 days and 21.8 days indicates the presence of two super Earths.

Findings of the research:

The discovered super earths are enormous than the Earth but substantially lesser than Uranus and Neptune.

The super earths are in the habitable zone of the red dwarf which could be a rocky world with water in liquid form.

The estimated temperature of the Gliese 887c is around 70 degree Celsius.

These planets provide best possibilities in the studies including the search of life outside the solar system.

About University of Göttingen:
President- Reinhard Jahn
Location– Germany

Russia is Set to Take First Tourists on Space Walk in 2023

Russia plans to take first tourist on space walk in 2023

On 25th June 2020, Russia’s Space Corporation RSC Energia(S.P. Korolev RSC Energia) in contract with Space Adventures of US announced that it is set to take its first tourist on space walk in 2023.
Note: Roscosmos and RSC Energia in collaboration with Space Adventures took 8 tourists to ISS between 2001 and 2009.
Features of contract:
i.The contract between Energia and Space Adventures promises to take 2 tourists on space walk to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2023.
ii.With the Russian cosmonaut, the tourists will participate in the walk from the Russian Segment.
Other Tourism mission to Space:
i.NASA signed with Richard Brason’s Virgin Galactic Space Tourism company to promote private missions to ISS.
ii.In March 2020, SpaceX of Elon Musk announced space tourism for three tourists in 2021.
About RSC Energia:
Director General– Dmitry Rogozin
Headquarters– Moscow, Russia

New Zealand Cricketer Rachel Priest Announces Retirement from International Cricket

New Zealand's Rachel Priest retires from international cricket

New Zealand wicketkeeper-batswoman Rachel Priest(35 years old) announced her retirement from international cricket after she was not included in the White Ferns central contracts list announced in June 2020.

  •  With this decision she brought her 13 years career with the White Ferns to an end.

Key info:
i.Rachel Priest confirmed that she will continue to play in domestic cricket and has recently  signed up a contract with Cricket Tasmania to play in Australia Women’s National Cricket League(WNCL) for the 2020-21 season.
ii.As she moved to Tasmania in the advent of the season she joined Western Australia’s Heather Graham and New South Wales’ Naomi Stalenberg.
iii.She made her debut for New Zealand against Australia in 2007. She has played  87 One Day Internationals (ODIs)  and 75 Twenty 20 Internationals (T20Is) for New Zealand and scored 1694 and 873 runs respectively.
About New Zealand:
Capital– Wellington
Currency– New Zealand Dollar(NZD)
Prime Minister– Jacinda Ardern

Micro-, Small and Medium – Sized Enterprises Day 2020 – June 27

Micro-, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Day | United Nations

United Nations(UN) Micro-, Small and Medium – Sized Enterprises(MSME) Day is observed annually on 27th June to recognise the contributions of these enterprises to the global economy and sustainable development and their focus on promoting innovation and creativity.

Background:

The United Nations General Assembly(UNGA), designate June 27th as the Micro-, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Day in the resolution A/RES/71/279 on 6th April 2017.to recognise the need of sustainable business practices and to focus on the importance of micro-, small and medium sized enterprises in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals(SDG) through the implementation of  SDG 8 – decent work and economic growth  and SDG 9 – industry, innovation and infrastructure.

Events of 2020:

In this pandemic situation due to COVID-19 situation, United Nations hosts three events 

  1. To hear from entrepreneurs across the world the International Trade Center held a WebTV programme on 24th June 2020 and launched the flagship “SME Competitiveness Report COVID-19: The Great Lockdown and its Impact on Small Business”
  2. “First Responders to Societal Needs”, organized by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development(UNCTAD), UN’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs(DESA), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Permanent Mission of Argentina, and ICSB on 25th June 2020.
  3. UNCTAD organised a session on MSMEs as Drivers of Post COVID-19 Economic Recovery in Africa on 25th June 2020.

UN Response:

i.The International Trade Centre observes the effects on the pandemic on the MSMEs with a focus on the small businesses in the developing countries.

ii.The International Labour Organization, UNIDO, and the World Bank among the other institutes supports these enterprises to cope with the effects of COVID-19 pandemic.

Note:

According to the International Council for Small Business(ICSB) the formal and informal MSME makes up over 90% of the firms and accounts for about 70% of total employment and 50% of GDP.

About UNCTAD:
Secretary-General- Mukhisa Kituyi
Headquarters– Geneva, Switzerland

IAS Officer Vini Mahajan Becomes Punjab’s First Woman Chief Secretary

1987 batch IAS officer Vini Mahajan becomes Punjab's first woman ...

On June 26, 2020 The Punjab government appointed 1987 batch Indian Administrative Service(IAS)  Officer Vini Mahajan as the Chief Secretary, after which she becomes the 1st woman to hold this post. She will remain in the post until October 2024. She succeeded Karan Avtar Singh, who was due to retire in August 2020.

  • Currently she is the only Punjab cadre officer in the state to hold a Secretary’s post at the Centre. 

Gist about Vini Mahajan

Vini Mahajan has a total of 33 years experience in Central and Punjab governments. 

Various role held

i.Vini Mahajan prior to this appointment was serving as Additional Chief Secretary, Investment Promotion,  and Governance Reforms and Public Grievances.

ii.She has worked in the office of the former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh from 2005-2012 and handled matters related to Finance, Industry and Commerce, Telecom and information technology(IT). 

iii.She has headed the state’s Health Sector Response & Procurement Committee.

iv.She became the 1st woman officer to be posted as Deputy Commissioner(DC) in Punjab in 1995, where she took charge as DC in Ropar & served as the 1st Director Disinvestment. 

v.She was part of the central government’s core team which binded India’s domestic response, during and after the 2008 global financial crisis.

Participation- She has also participated in the global response through the G-20 mechanism.

Award– She has received National Literacy Award for best performance in India 

About Punjab:
Capital– Chandigarh
Chief minister– Amarinder Singh
Governor– V. P. Singh Badnore

Chhattisgarh becomes the 1st state to launch “Godhan Nyay Yojana” , to Procure Cow Dung From Livestock Owners

Chhattisgarh to buy cow dung from cattle rearers, becomes first ...

On 25th June 2020, Bhupesh Baghel, Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh announced the launch of “Godhan Nyay Yojana” through an online press conference to promote animal husbandry and make it a commercially profitable practice and to procure the cow dung from the farmers at a fixed rate.

Objectives:

To prevent the cattles from open grazing and solve the problems due to stray animals.

Godhan Nyay Yojana:

i.The scheme will commence from the Hareli Festival on 20th July 2020.

Under this scheme the government will collect the cow dung from the farmers for a fixed price and convert it into vermicompost fertilizers which will be sold through the cooperative societies to meet the fertilizer requirement of farmers, Forest Department, Agriculture, Horticulture and Urban Administration Department for plantation campaigns

ii.Upon the suggestions of Farmers, livestock owners and cowshed operators and intellectuals the rate of procurement will be decided by the 5 member sub-committee of the cabinet chaired by Ravindra Choubey, Minister of Agriculture and Water Resource.

iii.The marketing arrangement for the organic fertilizers will be made by the government of Chhattisgarh.

iv.The Chief Minister also inaugurated the biggest solid waste processing plant in Raipur,Chhattisgarh.

About Chhattisgarh:
Chief Minister– Bhupesh Baghel
Governor– Anusuiya Uikey
Capital– Raipur

Chhattisgarh government to launch Adarsh police station scheme from July 1, 2020

From 1st July 2020, the Adarsh Police stations scheme will be launched in Chhattisgarh. It will develop the police stations in the state as Ideal Police stations.
Certain parameters were set by the government & if the Police station meets the criteria then it will be rewarded.
The parameters are:

  • The conduct of the police station in-charge and other staff with the general public
  • Maintenance of records should be up to the mark,
  • Environment should support the victims, women and children to speak freely about their problems without fear.

The state government has decided to withdraw petty cases against tribal people in Bastar region and  the DGP has instructed to release the tribals who don’t have serious cases registered against them.
About Chhattisgarh:
Capital: Raipur
Chief Minister: Bhupesh Baghel
Governor: Anusuiya Uikey

India’s economy to contract by 5% in 2020: S&P Global Ratings

According  to the S&P Global Ratings report titled ‘Asia-Pacific losses near USD 3 trillion as balance sheet recession looms’, India’s economy is expected to contract by 5% in 2020 before rebounding in 2021 and Asia-Pacific’s economy will contract by 1.3% in 2020 but show 6.9% growth in 2021.

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