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Current Affairs 12 & 13 April 2020

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Current Affairs April 12 & 13 2020We are here for you to provide the important Recent and Latest Current Affairs 12 & 13 April 2020, which have unique updates of Latest Current Affairs 2020 events from all newspapers such as The Hindu, The Economic Times, PIB, Times of India, PTI, Indian Express, Business Standard and all Government official websites.

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Top 25 Current Affairs of 12 & 13 April 2020

NATIONAL AFFAIRS

Union HRD minister launches ‘Bharat Padhe Online’ campaign MHRD Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank launches Bharat Padhe Online campaign

On April 10, 2020 Union Human Resource Development (HRD) minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ launched a week-long ‘Bharat Padhe Online’ campaign in New Delhi for crowd sourcing of ideas so as to improve the online education ecosystem of India, the main target audience are teachers & students.
Key Points
i.The campaign aims to invite all the best brains in India to share suggestions or solutions directly with the HRD Ministry, to overcome the obstacles of online education while promoting the available digital education platforms.
ii.Educators across the country can also contribute with their expertise in the field of education, where a conversation may be initiated about the limitation of the current online education scenario, challenges faced by them in traditional classrooms that can be addressed through online education & the structure of a perfect online education ecosystem.
iii.The Ideas can be shared on [email protected] and on twitter by using # BharatPadheOnline & tagging @HRDMinistry and @DrRPNishank up to 16th April 2020.

ICMR approves use of TB diagnostic machine for coronavirus

On April 10, 2020, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the apex body in India for the formulation and promotion of biomedical research, has allowed the use of a diagnostic machine used to test drug-resistant TB (Tuberculosis) for conducting coronavirus tests. In this regard, it had recognized the ‘TruenatTM beta COV test on the TruLabTM workstation’ and recommended it as a screening test.

  • Currently, India is using RT-PCR (Real Time-Polymerase Chain Reaction) test recommended by the US (United States) and approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration).

Key Points:
i.During the investigations, samples will be taken from the nose and throat and sent to the viral transport medium (VTM) provided with the kit.
ii.Earlier ICMR has also recommended the use of the Truenat beta CoV test on Truelab workstation, which is used to detect drug resistant TB.
About ICMR:
It is funded by the Government of India through the Department of Health Research, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW).
Headquarter– New Delhi
Director General– Prof. Balram Bhargava

Government approves ex-gratia compensation for life insurance cover for FCI employees: COVID-19life insurance for more than one lakh FCI employees

On April 10, 2020 the government has approved ex-gratia monetary compensation for life insurance cover to 1,08,714 workers, officers & labourers of the Food Corporation of India (FCI) who die due to COVID-19, as they work round the clock to supply food grains across the country, it is announced by the Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution,  Ram Vilas Paswan.
Provision of life insurance cover
In the 6 month period from March 24 to 23 September, 2020 if anyone dies due to COVID-19 infection while on duty with FCI, the Regular FCI Labour will get a life cover of Rs 15 lakhs, Contractual Labour- sanctioned upto Rs 10 lakhs , Category 1 Officers Rs 35 lakhs, Category 2- Rs 30 lakhs and Category 3 & 4 workers- Rs 25 lakhs.
Reason for the cover
Currently the FCI employees’ families are entitled to compensation in case of death due to terrorist attack, bomb blast, mob attack or natural disaster, whereas regular and contractual Labour were not covered under its provisions.
About FCI:
It is the country’s nodal food grain procurement and distribution agency.
Headquarters– New Delhi, India
Chairman & Managing Director– D.V. Prasad, Indian Administrative Service (IAS)

Dharmendra pradhan participates G20 extraordinary energy ministers virtual meeting 2020 chaired by Saudi ArabiaG20 Extraordinary Energy Ministers Meeting

On April 10,2020,The Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Dharmendra Pradhan has attended the G20 Extraordinary Energy Ministers’ virtual meeting 2020 on behalf of India through video conferencing.
The meeting was presided over by Saudi Arabia, Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz . & focused on the ways and means to ensure stable energy markets, which have been affected due to decrease in demand as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Key Points:
i.It saw the participation of energy Ministers of all G20 countries along with Saudi Arabia Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz. While international organizations associated with oil and gas sector with energy, OPEC ( Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries), IEA (International Energy Agency) and IEF (International Energy Forum) were specially invited.
ii.India, after supplying hydroxychloroquine drugs to the United States(US), is ready to solve global challenges in the energy sector as well. The government has also decided to provide free LPG cylinders under Ujjwala scheme to 80.3 million poor families, as part of a 23 billion dollars relief fund.
About G20 (or Group of Twenty):

  • Members– Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, ​Republic o​f Korea​,​ Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, ​​​Turkey, United Kingdom (UK), United States (US), and European Union (EU)​. Spain is a permanent guest invitee to the G20 meetings.
  • Chairman– Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud (2020)
  • 2019 G20 Summit– Osaka, Japan

India jobless rate hits 23.4% amid COVID-19 lockdown: CMIEJobless rate amid Covid-19 lockdown

On April 7, 2020 the Centre for Monitoring of Indian Economy (CMIE) released a data which showed that unemployment rate during March 30 – April 5, 2020 rise to 23.4%  from 8.7% for the whole of March 2020 which reflects the impact of lockdown due to COVID-19 pandemic breakdown.
Other Projections

  • The Labour Participation Rate (LPR) fell to 36%, an all-time low from 41.9% in March 2020.
  • The employment rate fell to 27.7%….Click here to Read More

COVID-19: Jitendra Singh distributed 2200 Essential kits prepared by Kendriya Bhandar to needy families in Delhi 

On April 8, 2020, Kendriya Bhandar, which functions under the Department of Personnel and Training (DOPT) has taken the unique initiative of providing “Essential Kits” to needy families in Delhi due to the Coronavirus crisis. The kits were distributed by Dr. Jitendra Singh, Ministry of State (MoS) for the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) and  Minister of State (MoS) for Prime Minister’s Office (PMO); Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space.
Key Points:
i.Kendriya Bhandar has prepared a total of 2200 kits for distribution to needy families which consists of 9 items such as Rice, Wheat flour, Dal, Cooking oil, Chiwda/poha, Salt, Bathing soap bar, detergent soap bar and biscuits.
ii.The Minister handed over 1700 kits SDM (Sub-Divisional Magistrate), Civil Lines, Central Delhi District and the remaining 500 kits will be given to DM [District Magistrate] (Central).

Ahmedabad railway station becomes first station of IR to install sanitizing tunnel

On April 9, 2020, The Ahmedabad railway station at Kalupur, Gujarat of Western Railway became the first station of Indian Railways (IR) to install a Walk Through Mass Sanitizing Tunnel to ensure the safety of staff and passengers in the view of the COVID-19. The tunnel was inaugurated by Ahmedabad DRM (Divisional Railway Manager) Deepak Jha.
Key Points:
i.About Sanitizing tunnel: The tunnel uses WHO (World Health Organization) approved sanitizer and fitted with a sensor, so that when a passenger approaches the tunnel entrance it starts fogging automatically.
ii.The distance of the tunnel is 20 feet long which can be covered within 10 seconds. The tunnel has a capacity of sanitizing 25 to 30 people per minute & consumes approximately  20 ml sanitizer per person.
iii.The sanitization system runs on the principle of Vaporization process which converts the sanitizer mixture into vapour which forms a uniform layer over the surface & dries up quickly.
About Indian Railways:
Headquarters– New Delhi.
Minister of Railway– Piyush Goyal.
Chairman of Railway Board– Vinod Kumar Yadav.

 INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

UNIDO signs MoU with Consumer Unity and Trust Society to counter economic impact of COVD-19

On April 10, 2020, United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN), has inked an memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Consumer Unity and Trust Society (CUTS), a non-profit organisation based in Jaipur, Rajasthan, to promote consumers to contribute to the global development agenda as well as support their respective governments in times of global crisis like coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Key Points:
i.Tha MoU, valid for 5 years, aims to create a joint technical co-operation initiatives to support ongoing activities in achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Goal (SDG).
ii.As per the MoU, CUTS will support e-commerce as a platform to accelerate Member States’ transition to the digital economy and adapt to the 4th Industrial Revolution.
iii.Both the agencies also decided to implement a BRICS e-commerce project that will build upon the success of UNIDO’s pilot e-commerce project implemented in the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) countries from 2016 to 2018.
About United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO):
Headquarters
– Vienna, Austria
Director General– LI Yong
About Consumer Unity and Trust Society (CUTS):
Headquarters
– Jaipur,Rajasthan
Secretary General– Pradeep S. Mehta

BANKING & FINANCE

Jana Small Finance Bank launches DigiGen, a digital banking platform 

On April 7, 2020 the Jana Small Finance Bank, a scheduled commercial bank, has launched DigiGen, a digital banking platform which enables the customers to open digitally a savings account & fixed deposit instantly anytime & anywhere.
Key Points
i.It is a 3 step process to open an account, where the customers are eligible for 4.5% interest rates on savings accounts with no minimum balance and up to 7.5% interest on fixed deposits. Customers can deposit upto 1 Lakh in this account before upgrading to a full KYC account with the bank.
ii.The new digital solution offers many features including online bill payment, instant cash transfer and airport lounge access on a debit card.
About Jana Small Finance Bank:
Headquarters– Bengaluru, India
Managing Director (MD) & Chief Executive Officer (CEO)– Ajay Kanwal

ECONOMY & BUSINESS

India’s Fiscal deficit of 5.07% in February makes it difficult to meet its revised target of 3.8%: GOIFiscal deficit at 5

On April 10, 2020 The report released by the Government of India (GOI) stated that the fiscal deficit in February was 5.07% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), making it difficult for the government to meet its revised fiscal deficit target of 3.8% of GDP for FY20.
Key Points
i.According to the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) data, the fiscal deficit has touched Rs 10.36 lakh crore….Click here to Read More

   APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATIONS         

Karnataka Bank gets RBI nod to reappoint Mahabaleshwara M S as MD and CEO for 3 yearsKarnataka Bank reappoint Mahabaleshwara MD and CEO

On April 11, 2020, Private sector lender Karnataka Bank received RBI (Reserve Bank of India) approval for the re-appointment of Mahabaleshwara M S as MD (Managing Director) and CEO (Chief Executive Officer) for next 3 years. The bank regulator has also approved for reappointment of Polali Jayarama Bhat as part time (non-executive) chairman.
Key Points:
i.About P Jayarama Bhat: The Board of Directors of the Karnataka Bank have reappointed P Jayarama Bhat as Part Time (Non-Executive) Chairman to hold office up to November 13, 2021 (i.e., up to the limit age of 70 years).
ii.Bhat also served as MD and CEO of Karnataka bank.
iii.About Mahabaleshwara: Mahabaleshwara took charge as MD & CEO of Karnataka Bank on April 12, 2017 and has over 29 years of banking experience both at operational and administrative levels.
About Karnataka Bank Limited:
Headquarters– Mangalore, Karnataka.
Tagline– Your Family Bank Across India.

Raghuram Rajan named among 12 members of External Advisory Group: IMFIMF MD Raghuram Rajan,11 others external advisory group

On April 11, 2020 The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director (MD) Kristalina Georgieva named former Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Raghuram Rajan and 11 others to its  new External Advisory Group.
Objective
To provide perspectives from around the world on key developments, policy issues, policy responses to the exceptional challenges the world now faces due to the coronavirus pandemic and its economic impact.
Key Points
i.The group consists of members who have expertise in high- level policy….Click here to Read More

Indian Actress Tamannaah Bhatia signed as brand ambassador for MPL 

India’s largest mobile gaming platform, Mobile Premier League (MPL) has brought Tamannaah Bhatia of Baahubali fame, as its brand ambassador, to endorse their gaming platform. Recently, MPL also renewed its association with Indian Cricket Captain Virat Kohli for another one year.
Key Points:
i.Tamannaah is popular in Bollywood and regional film landscape and that is what makes her suitable to promote the brand across its diverse user base. She will promote MPL across all channels.
ii.MPL currently has more than 35 million users, with over 40 games on the platform.

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

COVID-19: SCTIMST scientists develop disinfection gateway & face mask disposal binSCTIMST disinfection gateway & facemask disposal bin

On April 10, 2020, Scientists at Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Science and Technology (SCTIMST), Trivandram, Kerala, an autonomous institute under the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India (GOI), have designed two technologies- disinfection gateway and face mask disposal bin to fight COVID-19 pandemic.
Key Points:
i.About disinfection gateway: The disinfection gateway is designed by SCTIMST scientists Jithin Krishnan & Subash V V from the Division of Medical Instrumentation for the decontamination of people, one at a time.
ii.It is a portable system equipped with a system for generating Hydrogen peroxide mist and UV (Ultra Violet rays) based decontamination facility. The design is transferred to HMT (Hindustan Machine Tools), Ernakulam, Kerala.
iii.About face mask bin: The UV based face mask bin was designed by Subash VV from SCTIMST, which can be used by health workers in hospitals and in public places where decontamination of used facemask, overhead covers, face shields etc., which breaks the infection chain.

BEL & AIIMS- Rishikesh jointly develops remote health monitoring system for coronavirus cases

On April 09, 2020, The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS)Rishikesh (Uttarakhand) and Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), an Indian state-owned aerospace and defence company, have jointly developed India’s 1st remote health monitoring system. With this help, the remote parameters of coronavirus (COVID-19)-infected patients quarantined in homes and hospitals can be detected from anywhere.
Key Points:
i.Benefit: The system will help reduce the widespread shortage of PPE (personal protective equipment).
ii.Features: The non-invasive sensors of this device used to measure the main parameters of a coronavirus patient’s body temperature, pulse rate, SPO2 or saturated oxygen level, and respiration rate at his home. This will avoid the patient being hospitalized unnecessarily.
iii.How it works?
A mobile app and Web browser has been developed for this system. Anyone on the possibility of Corona infection will contact this app and join AIIMS. After this, the AIIMS health care worker will assess their complaints and if found necessary, will provide these individuals with a kit to help monitor their health parameters regularly.
Through the patient’s mobile phone or integral GSM SIM (Global System for Mobile-subscriber identity module) card,Patient health parameters, along with patient location, are uploaded on a daily basis to a centralised command & control centre (CCC) on cloud.
About Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL):
Headquarters
– Bengaluru, Karnataka
Chairman & MD– M V Gowtama
About AIIMS Rishikesh:
President
– Samiran Nundy
Director– Ravi Kant

For the first time, NASA scientists measure wind speed on a brown dwarf

On April 9, 2020, Scientists at the NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), the United States (US) space agency, has measured wind speed on a brown dwarf named 2MASS J10475385+2124234, which is located 32 light-years from Earth, by using the National Science Foundation’s Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) & NASA’s recently retired infrared observatory and the Spitzer Space Telescope.
Key Points:
i.They detected winds moving around the planet at 1,425 mph (2,293 kph) & measured the slight difference in the speed of the brown dwarf’s atmosphere comparative with its interior. With an atmospheric temperature of more than 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit (600 degrees Celsius), this specific brown dwarf emits a small amount of infrared light.
ii.Brown dwarfs, sometimes called “failed stars, are larger than Jupiter (the largest planet in our solar system, which has a wind speed of about 230 mph.
iii.The details have been published in the journal Science.
About National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA):
Headquarters
– Washington, D.C., United States
Administrator– Jim Bridenstine

COVID-19: IIT-Bombay researchers develop ‘digital stethoscope’ which can hear heartbeat from a distance 

On April 11, 2020, A team from Biomedical Engineering & Technology incubation Centre (BETiC) at the Indian Institute of Technology of Bombay (IIT-B) has developed a “digital stethoscope” that can listen to hear beats from a distance and record them. Thus the smart stethoscope minimises the risk to doctors and health care professionals who are handling COVID- 19 (Coronavirus) patients.
Key Points:
i.The IIT-B team has received a patent for the device that records the auscultated sound from lungs & store it as a part of a patient’s health record and the data can be shared with other doctors for analysis.
ii.About digital stethoscope: The data or the auscultated sound from a patient’s chest is wirelessly sent to the doctor using Bluetooth.
iii.The team in collaboration with “AyuDevice”, a startup company in IIT-B campus, has sent 1,000 digital stethoscopes to different hospitals and healthcare centers across the country. The product has been developed with clinical inputs from doctors at Reliance Hospital and PD Hinduja Hospital.

Google and Apple ties-up to create coronavirus contact tracing technology by smartphone

On April 11, 2020, Apple Inc.,an American multinational technology company,has partnered with Google LLC have jointly create a coronavirus (COVID-19) contact tracing technology using Bluetooth signals.
i.Both companies are launching a tracing tool for Google Android phones and Apple iPhones through which it will be easy to notify people via smartphone if they come in contact with any patient infected with covid-19.
ii.The coming together of the two firms will help governments and health agencies reduce the spread of the virus,where If a person tests positive for corona, they could notify public health authorities through an app. then, those public health apps would then alert anyone whose smartphones had come near the infected person’s phone in the prior 14 days.
About Google LLC:
Headquarters
– California, United States
CEO– Sundar Pichai
About Apple Inc:
Headquarters
– California, United States
CEO– Tim Cook

OBITUARY

Padma Shri classical singer Shanti Hiranand passed away at 87Padma Shri classical singer Shanti Hiranand

On April 10, 2020, Shanti Hiranand Chawla, renowned Hindustani Classical singer and Padma Shri awardee passed away at the age of 87 in Gurugram, Haryana. She was born in 1932 in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh (UP).
Key Points:
i.About Shanti Hiranand: Shanti was trained in thumri, dadra and ghazal singing by Begum Akthar. With the passing of Shanti Hiranand the Begum Akthar era is formally over.
ii.She was world-renowned for keeping the legendary ghazal singer’s style alive in her performances, which she staged all across the world including Lahore, Islamabad, Toronto, Boston, New York and Washington.
iii.About Books: Shanti Hiranand authored the book named “Begum Akhtar: The Story of My Ammi”, a biographical work on renowned ghazal singer Begum Akhtar.
iv.Awards: The Government of India (GOI) awarded Shanti Hiranand, the fourth highest civilian honour of Padma Shri in 2007, for her contributions to Hindustani music.

IMPORTANT DAYS

National Safe Motherhood Day 2020: April 11National Safe Motherhood Day 2020

National Safe Motherhood Day (NSMD) is celebrated annually on April 11, to raise awareness on proper healthcare and maternity facilities to pregnant and lactating women.
Key Points:
i.NSMD is an initiative of the White Ribbon Alliance India (WRAI) to ensure that every woman should have the availability and enough access to care during pregnancy, childbirth and postnatal services.
ii.India is the first country in the world to have official National Safe Motherhood Day.
iii.In 2003, the Government of India had declared April 11 as NSMD, which is the birth anniversary of Kasturba Gandhi, wife of Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the nation.

AC GAZE

NCW launches domestic violence helpline for women

National Commission for Women (NCW ) has launched a WhatsApp helpline number -7217735372 to report cases of domestic violence against women, which have seen a rise during the lockdown period of COVID-19.The headquarters of NCW is New Delhi.

ADB assures $2.2 bn support package to India to fight Covid-19 pandemic

Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Masatsugu Asakawa has assured Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman of USD 2.2 billion (about Rs 16,500 crore) support to India in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Former New Zealand Wicketkeeper Jock Edwards passes away at 64

Former  New Zealand  wicketkeeper-batsman Jock Edwards passed away at the age of 64, who played six Tests and eight one-day internationals for New Zealand and also played  67 first-class matches between 1974 and 1985.

Former Zimbabwean cricketer Jackie du Preez passes away at 77

Former Zimbabwean cricketer Jackie du Preez passed away due to long-standing heart condition in Harare at the age of 77, who played for South Africa in Zimbabwe’s pre-independence days. He played in two Tests for South Africa in 1967.

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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)
S.no                      Current Affairs 12 & 13 April 2020
1 Union HRD minister launches ‘Bharat Padhe Online’ campaign
2 ICMR approves use of TB diagnostic machine for coronavirus
3 Government approves ex-gratia compensation for life insurance cover for FCI employees: COVID-19
4 Dharmendra pradhan participates G20 extraordinary energy ministers virtual meeting 2020 chaired by Saudi Arabia
5 India jobless rate hits 23.4% amid COVID-19 lockdown: CMIE
6 COVID-19: Jitendra Singh distributed 2200 Essential kits prepared by Kendriya Bhandar to needy families in Delhi
7 Ahmedabad railway station becomes first station of IR to install sanitizing tunnel
8 UNIDO signs MoU with Consumer Unity Trust Society to counter economic impact of COVD-19
9 Jana Small Finance Bank launches DigiGen, a digital banking platform
10 India’s Fiscal deficit of 5.07% in February makes it difficult to meet its revised target of 3.8%: GOI
11 Karnataka Bank gets RBI nod to reappoint Mahabaleshwara M S as MD and CEO for 3 years
12 Raghuram Rajan named among 12 members of External Advisory Group: IMF
13 Indian Actress Tamannaah Bhatia signed as brand ambassador for MPL
14 COVID-19: SCTIMST scientists develop disinfection gateway & face mask disposal bin
15 BEL & AIIMS- Rishikesh jointly develops remote health monitoring system for coronavirus cases
16 For the first time, NASA scientists measure wind speed on a brown dwarf
17 COVID-19: IIT-Bombay researchers develop ‘digital stethoscope’ which can hear heartbeat from a distance
18 Google and Apple ties-up to create coronavirus contact tracing technology by smartphone
19 Padma Shri classical singer Shanti Hiranand passed away at 87
20 National Safe Motherhood Day 2020: April 11
21 NCW launches domestic violence helpline for women
22 ADB assures $2.2 bn support package to India to fight Covid-19 pandemic
23 Former New Zealand Wicketkeeper Jock Edwards passes away at 64
24 Former Zimbabwean cricketer Jackie du Preez passes away at 77

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