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Current Affairs 20 & 21 December 2020

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We are here for you to provide the important Recent and Latest Current Affairs 20 & 21 December 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 20 & 21 December 2020

NATIONAL AFFAIRS

Minister of Commerce & Industry, Piyush Goyal launched “Australia Economic Strategy Report 2020” Shri Piyush Goyal launches India-Australia Economic Strategy Report
i.On December 18, 2020, Shri Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Commerce and Industry launched Australia Economic Strategy Report 2020 prepared by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) team, led by Ambassador Anil Wadhwa, Former Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs, with contribution from KPMG, India.
ii.The Report was launched during the CII’s virtual session on Enhancing India Australia Bilateral Economic and Trade Relationship.
iii.Both nations can further expand their trade relationship with 3B objectives: Bigger trade basket – Better trade basket – Balanced trade relationship.
About Confederation of Indian Industry (CII):
Director General– Chandrajit Banerjee
President– Uday Kotak
Headquarter– New Delhi
<<Read Full News>>

35th edition of IND-INDO CORPAT 2020 held between the Indian Navy and the Indonesian Navy 35th edition of India-Indonesia Coordinated Patrol

i.On December 17-18, 2020, the 35th edition of India-Indonesia Coordinated Patrol (IND-INDO CORPAT) 2020 between the Indian Navy and the Indonesian Navy was held to strengthen inter-operability and to build strong bonds of friendship across the Indo Pacific.
ii.The Indian side was represented by Indian Naval Ship (INS) Kulish, an indigenously built missile corvette along with P8I Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) while Indonesian side was led by Indonesian Naval Ship KRI Cut Nyak Dien, a Kapitan Pattimura (Parchim I) class corvette and a MPA of the Indonesian Navy.
About Indonesia:
Capital– Jakarta
Currency– Indonesian rupiah
President– Joko Widodo
<<Read Full News>>

Overview of British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab’s 4-day visit to IndiaForeign Secretary Dominic Raab’s four-day visit to India

Dominic Raab, Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, United Kingdom (UK) paid 4-day visit to India from December 14-17, 2020.
i.The meeting assumes significance as the UK is keen to promote its ties with India in Post-Brexit era.
ii.On 17th December, 2020 Dominic Raab visited Bengaluru to meet the Chief Minister of Karnataka, B. S. Yediyurappa. They signed multiple Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with the state.
iii.Both Countries emphasized on 5  themes in a 10-year roadmap to deepen the ties between the two countries, and boost strategic cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region.
iv.PM Modi accepts Boris Johnson’s invite to be part of G7meeting.
List of MoUs & Agreements signed:

  • MoU between Karnataka Government & British Council
  • UK & India will jointly invest 5 Million Pounds into the NEEV fund to support green recovery.
  • India’s CDSCO & UK Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (UK MHRA) sign MoU for frequent discussion on UK-India vaccine and pharmaceutical regulations, improving standards.
  • New Virtual UK-India vaccines hub announced by both countries to help in the shared fight against Coronavirus.

About United Kingdom (UK):
Capital– London
Currency– Pound sterling
Prime Minister– Boris Johnson
<<Read Full News>>

MoFPI Signed Joint Communique with MoTA along with 5 MoUs with TRIFED, ICAR, NSFDC, NAFED and NCDC for PM-FMEMinistry of Food Processing Industries signeda Joint Communique with Ministry of Tribal Affair

i.On December 18, 2020, Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) signed a Joint Communique with Ministry of Tribal Affairs (MoTA) and also inked 5 Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with  5 government entities for the implementation of Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro food processing Enterprises (PM-FME) Scheme.
ii.The MoUs were signed with TRIFED (Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India ), ICAR( Indian Council of Agricultural Research), NSFDC(National Scheduled Castes Finance and Development Corporation), NAFED (National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd. ) and NCDC (National Cooperative Development Corporation).
iii.MoFPI signed an agreement with Union Bank of India as nodal bank for PM FME scheme.Union Bank of India would help in transferring the subsidy received from Centre and states into loan accounts.
iv.Joint Communique was signed by Deepak Khandekar, Secretary, MoTA and Pushpa Subrahmanyam, Secretary, MoFPI  in the presence Narendra Singh Tomar, Arjun Munda, Rameshwar Teli.
About Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India (TRIFED):
Establishment– 1987
Managing Director (MD)– Pravir Krishna
Headquarter– New Delhi
Parent Ministry– Ministry of Tribal Affairs
<<Read Full News>>

RK Singh Launches India’s 1st CoE for Skill Development in Power Sector at NISE, HaryanaSkill India Establishes First Centre of Excellence for Skill Development

On December 18, 2020, Minister of State for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE), RK Singh virtually launched India’s 1st Centre of Excellence (CoE) for Skill Development in Power Sector at the campus of National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE), Gwal Pahari, Gurugram, Haryana. The CoE was established as a result of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between MSDE, Government of India & the Ministry of National Education & Youth, Government of the French Republic and  Schneider Electric.
i.The CoE will serve as a platform to create a robust cadre of certified trainers and assessors across the country.
ii.The CoE will house 2 labs – Advance Electrician Lab & Solar Lab set up by Schneider Electric as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative.
iii.Power Sector Skill Council will be responsible for managing operations of the centre & for development of necessary learning contents for job roles in Generation, transmission, distribution & downstream sub-sectors.
About Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE):
Union Minister – Mahendra Nath Pandey
Minister of State – Raj Kumar Singh
About Schneider Electric:
Chairman & Chief Executive Officer – Jean-Pascal Tricoire
Headquarters – Rueil-Malmaison, France
<<Read Full News>>

EAM  Jaishankar virtually Addresses the 2020 GTS – 5th Edition organized by MEA, CIExternal Affairs Minister addresses 2020 Global Technology Summit

External Affairs Minister (EAM), Jaishankar virtually addressed the 2020 Global Technology Summit (GTS)5th Edition, It was jointly organized by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), Carnegie India (CI) from December 14-18, 2020. The Theme of 2020 GTS is “Geopolitics of Technology”.
i.Sub theme of GTS 2020 – Data: Linking the World, Digital Payments: The Future of Global Financial Highways, Digital Inclusion: Taking the Local to the Global, and Transforming Healthcare for a Post-COVID World.
ii.GTS is one of the four Flagship annual conferences organized by MEA, the other three being – Raisina Dialogue, the Geo-Economic Dialogue & the Indian Ocean Conference.
iii.EAM S Jaishankar argued for the reformation process in the United Nations (UN).
Carnegie India (CI):
It was established in 2016 to focus on 3 interrelated programs – technology and society, political economy, and security studies.
About Carnegie India (CI):
Centre Director – Rudra Chaudhuri
Location – New Delhi
<<Read Full News>>

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

MoD organized India-Maldives Defence Cooperation Webinar and ExpoIndia-Maldives Defence Cooperation Webinar and Expo organised by MoD

On 17th December, 2020 Department of Defence Production (DDP), Ministry of Defence (MoD) through Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) organized India – Maldives Defence Cooperation Webinar and Expo as a part of the Aero India 21 series of webinar to boost defence cooperation and engagements with friendly foreign countries.
Theme- “Joint Indo Maldives High Level Defence Engagement”
Highlights:
i.India is committed for a stable, prosperous and peaceful Maldives under the country’s “Neighbourhood First” Policy.
ii.Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) made a presentation on their requirements from 11 Indian Defence Companies.
Participants of Webinar– Chief of Defence Force of Maldives National Defence Force, Major General Abdulla Shamaal, High Commissioner of India to the Maldives Sunjay Sudhir and other senior officials from both sides participated in the webinar.
About Maldives:
President- Ibrahim Mohamed Solih
Capital- Male
Currency- Maldivian Rufiyaa
The 8 Degree channel separates India’s Minicoy island and Maldives.

20th Meeting of IORA Council of Ministers hosted Virtually by UAE; France Joined IORA as its 23rd MemberUAE to host the 20th IORA Council of Ministers’ Meeting

i.On December 17, 2020, the 20th Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Council of Ministers (COM) Meeting 2020 hosted virtually by United Arab Emirates (UAE) where Indian side was represented by Vellamvelly Muraleedharan, Minister of State (MoS) Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).France became 23rd member of the Indian Ocean Rim Association.
ii.The COM was inaugurated by Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of UAE while it was chaired by Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh, UAE Minister of State.
iii.It was the first virtual COM amid COVID-19.
iv.The meeting was attended by all 22 Member States and 10 Dialogue Partners and also adopted the Emirates Communique as the outcome of the COM.
About Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA):
Establishment– 1997
Secretary-General– Nomvuyo N. Nokwe
Headquarter– Ebene, Mauritius
<<Read Full News>>

India ranks 111 out of 162 countries in the Human Freedom Index 2020; New Zealand tops the indexIndia ranks 111 out of 162 countries on personal freedom index

According to the ‘Human Freedom Index 2020: A Global Measurement of Personal, Civil, and Economic Freedom’ – 6th Annual Report released by Cato Institute of United States & Fraser Institute in Canada, India (overall score of 6.43) ranked 111 in the list of 162 countries. New Zealand (score – 8.87) topped the index followed by Switzerland (score – 8.82) & Hong Kong (score – 8.74).
i.The Human Freedom Index (HFI) 2020 is a global ranking of civil, economic & personal freedom, it uses data from 2008 to 2018.The Index was prepared by Ian Vásquez and Fred McMahon.
ii.India ranked 110/162 in Personal Freedom (Score – 6.30); 105/162 in Economic Freedom (Score –  6.56).
iii.In the Regional Wise Rankings, in South Asia, India secured 10th Rank among 17 countries.
iv.India was ranked 94 on the HFI 2019.
Overall Rankings:

Overall Rank Country Overall Score
111 India 6.43
1 New Zealand 8.87
2 Switzerland 8.82
3 Hong Kong SAR, China 8.74
160 Venezuela 4.08
161 Sudan 4.01
162 Syrian Arab Republic 3.97


About Cato Institute:
President, Chief Executive Officer – Peter N. Goettler
Location – Washington D.C., United States of America
About Fraser Institute:
Chairman – Peter Brown
Location – Vancouver, Canada
<<Read Full News>>

BANKING & FINANCE

ADB & Govt of India Signs $4.21 million PRF Facility for Tripura Urban and Tourism Development ProjectADB, India sign facility to support preparation of infrastructure projects in Tripura

i.On December 18, 2020  The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Government of India signed a $4.21 million(Around 31 Crore) Project Readiness Financing (PRF) facility for Tripura Urban and Tourism Development Project.
ii.This is the 1st PRF facility for a Northeastern state of India.
iii.Dr. C. S. Mohapatra, Additional Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance signed the facility on behalf of Govt of India and Takeo Konishi, Country Director of ADB’s India Resident Mission on behalf of ADB.
About Asian Development Bank (ADB):
Establishment– 1966
President– Masatsugu Asakawa
Headquarters– Mandaluyong City, Manila, Philippines
Membership– 68 countries (Including India)
About Tripura:
National Park– Clouded Leopard National Park, Bison National Park
Zoo– Sepahijala Zoo
<<Read Full News>>

RBI Further Extends Restrictions on PMC Bank till March 31, 2021RBI extends restrictions on PMC Bank by 3 months

On December 18, 2020 The Reserve Bank of India(RBI) further extended the restrictions of Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative(PMC) Bank Limited for a period of 3 months from December 23, 2020 to March 31, 2021.

  • All other terms and conditions of the Directives under reference shall remain unchanged.
  • Earlier the restriction was imposed till June 23, 2020 and then changed until December 22, 2020.

Reason for Extension:
i.PMC Bank for its reconstruction invited Expression of Interest (EoI) from eligible investors for investment/ equity participation.
ii.In regard to this PMC Bank has received 4 proposals.
iii.These proposals will be examined by the bank regarding their feasibility and viability considering the best interest of the depositors.
iv.The bank needs some time to examine the proposals and so the extension was made considering the best interest of all stakeholder.
Key Info about PMC Bank
i.PMC Bank, a Multi-State Urban Cooperative Bank was placed under All-Inclusive Directions under sub-section (1) of Section 35 A read with Section 56 of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949, with effect from September 23, 2019
ii.It was placed under due to bad loans, financial irregularities, fraudulent transactions.
iii.RBI had raised the withdrawal limit of PMC Bank to Rs 1,00,000 from Rs 50,000.
iv.RBI appointed AK Dixit, ex-General Manager of Union Bank of India(UBI) as the new administrator of PMC Bank with effect from September 23, 2020. He succeeded J.B. Bhoria, ex-chief general manager with the central bank.
About Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative(PMC) Bank Limited 
Commenced Operations– February 13, 1984
CEO– Surinderpal Singh Ram Singh(succeeds- Shiny Mithbaokar)
HeadQuarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra

RBI extended CKYCR to Legal Entities from Individual Accounts w.e.f. April 1, 2021: December 2020RBI extends CKYCR to legal entities

i.On December 18, 2020, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has amended the Master Direction (MD) on “Know Your Customer (KYC)”, dated February 25, 2016, by extending the applicability of centralized KYC registry to legal entities (LEs), from individual accounts w.e.f. April 1, 2021.
ii.In this regard, Regulated entities (REs) will upload the KYC data pertaining to the accounts of LEs opened on or after 1 April 2021, on to CKYCR in terms of Rule 9 (1A) of the PML (Prevention of Money-laundering) Rules.
iii.Since 2017, banks, non-banks, and other entities regulated by RBI have been uploading the KYC data of individual accounts opened on or after 1 January 2017 on to the centralized KYC registry (CKYCR).
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, and M Rajeswar Rao)
<<Read Full News>>

PayU Collaborates with Google Pay to Introduce Tokenised Payments Flow for MerchantsPayU, Google Pay introduce tokenised payment flow in India

On December 18, 2020 PayU collaborated with Google Pay to introduce tokenised payments flow for merchants in India. This collaboration enables the merchants of PayU to offer Google Pay users the option to use their debit cards, credit cards, or Google Pay UPI to make repeated payments without the need to physically share their card details.
Key Info
i.Google Pay users can make repeat payments seamlessly and securely as the information of the card is tokenised and the digital token is linked to the phone.
ii.Users can avail one-click payment experience during checkout, as they do not have the need to re-enter the payment data.
iii.OTP is read automatically and the payment is processed instantly, without redirections to third party sites.
What is Tokenisation?
It is the process of protecting sensitive data by replacing it with an algorithmically generated number called a token.
Tokenised payments offer a highly convenient, safe, and friction-free payment experience to the customers.
About PayU:
Headquarters– Netherlands
CEO– Laurent le Moal
CEO, India– Anirban Mukherjee
About Google:
Google Pay is a digital wallet platform and online payment system developed by Google.
CEO–  Sundar Pichai
Headquarters – California, USA

NPCI Introduced RuPay Contactless (Offline) feature

On December 16 2020 National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has introduced RuPay Contactless (Offline) feature, that also  provides reloadable wallets within RuPay Card, for daily transit payments. NPCI has also introduced RuPay Contactless (Offline) feature for retail payments on pilot basis. All these additional features will expand the total transaction experience for Rupay cardholders and also transform the overall card payment ecosystem.

ECONOMY & BUSINESS

India’s Retail inflation Declined to 6.93% in November 2020: CPI Data

As per the Consumer Price Index(CPI) data released by the Government of India, India’s retail inflation based on the CPI declined to 6.93% in November 2020 from 7.61% in October 2020. The inflation rate for rural area was 7.20% and urban area 6.73% in November 2020 against 7.75% and 7.33% in October 2020.

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS        

Amar Singh College Receives ‘Award of Merit’ in the 2020 UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage ConservationSrinagar's Amar Singh College Conservation Project honoured with UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards

i.On December 16, 2020 Amar Singh College, Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir received the ‘Award of Merit’ in the 2020 UNESCO(United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation.
ii.It is one of the 7 award winners of the 2020 awards. It is the first international award given to cultural heritage in Kashmir.
iii.Sunder Nursery of New Delhi, Mumbai received ‘Special Recognition for Sustainable Development’ and Award of Excellence.
iv.It is the 1st heritage complex in Delhi to receive 2 UNESCO Asia-Pacific awards for Cultural Heritage Conversation.
About United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization(UNESCO):
Director General– Audrey Azoulay
Headquarters– Paris, France
Members– 193 member states(including India) and 11 Associate Members
<<Read Full News>>

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATIONS          

Sukhbir Singh Sandhu Chairman of NHAI gets 2nd Extension of 6 MonthsNHAI chairman Sukhbir Singh Sandhu gets six months extension

On 17th December 2020, the Appointment committee of the cabinet approved the 2nd 6 month extension of Sukhbir Singh Sandhu’s Central deputation as the Chairman of National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways. His term as the chairman has been extended beyond 21st January 2021 to 21st July 2021.
About Sukhbir Singh Sandhu:
i.Sukhbir Singh Sandhu, IAS officer of 1988 batch from Uttarakhand Cadre took over as the Chairman of NHAI in 2019, replacing Nagendra Nath Sinha, IAS who was reassigned as the Secretary, Department of Border Management.
ii.He received his first extension in July 2019 which is due to end on 21st January 2021.
ii.Prior to his appointment as the Chairman of NHAI he served as the additional secretary, department of higher education, Minister of Human Resource Development Minister of Human Resource Development(MHRD) (Now Ministry of Education).
About National Highways Authority of India (NHAI):
NHAI was set up by an act of the Parliament, NHAI Act, 1988.
Chairman– Sukhbir Singh Sandhu
Headquarters– New Delhi

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh hands 3 DRDO Developed systems to Chiefs of 3 Armed ForcesDefence minister Rajnath Singh hands over 3 DRDO systems to chiefs of armed forces

On December 18, 2020, Union Minister for Defence, Rajnath Singh  handed over 3 New  Indigenous Systems – Border Surveillance System (BOSS), Indian Maritime Situational Awareness System (IMSAS) & ASTRA MK-I Missile all developed by Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) to the Chiefs of 3 Armed Forces –  Indian Navy, Indian Air Force (IAF) & Indian Army at a function held in DRDO Bhawan, New Delhi.
i.BOSS – An all-weather electronic surveillance system designed for automatic detection of intrusion at harsh high-altitude sub-zero temperature areas.
ii.IMSAS – A high performance software system to provide Global Maritime Situational Picture, Marine Planning Tools & Analytical capabilities to Indian Navy.
iii.ASTRA Mk-I is an Beyond Visual Range (BVR) Missile (Air-to-Air Missile) capable of being launched from Sukhoi-30, Light Combat Aircraft (LCA), Mig-29 & Mig-29K.
DRDO Awards Ceremony:
Rajnath Singh Felicitated 45 eminent Scientists from DRDO for their extraordinary research work & Contribution. DRDO Lifetime Achievement Award 2018 – N V Kadam, Agni Award for Excellence in Self-Reliance 2018 – Amit Sharma.
Defence Institute of High Altitude Research (DIHAR), Leh
conferred Defence Technology Spin-off Award for helping increase farm productivity in Ladakh, Dr OP Chaurasia, Director, DIHAR received the award.
About Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO):
Chairman – Dr G Satheesh Reddy
Headquarters – New Delhi
<<Read Full News>>

Russia launches 36 UK Telecom Satellite into SpaceRussia launches UK telecom satellites into space

On 18th December, 2020 Russian space agency Roscosmos Space Agency launched a Soyuz rocket carrying 36 UK telecommunications and internet satellites into space from Vostochny launch site. The satellites were made by British company OneWeb.

  • This was the first launch of OneWeb satellites from the Vostochny spaceport.

About OneWeb:
i.The launch was delayed when OneWeb went bankrupt in April, 2020.
ii.The UK government and Indian telecom giant Bharti took over the company with USD 500 million investment.
iii.OneWeb’s previous launches-

  • Six satellites in Feb, 2019 from French Guinea.
  • 34 satellites each in February and March 2020 from Kazakhstan.

iv.OneWeb will make its internet service commercially operational by 2022.
About Russia:
President- Vladimir Putin
Capital- Moscow
Currency- Ruble
About United Kingdom:
United Kingdom consists of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland
President- Boris Johnson
Capital- London
Currency- Pound Sterling

SPORTS

Anshu Malik wins India’s First Medal at the Wrestling-Individual World Cup 2020 in Belgrade, SerbiaWrestler Anshu Malik clinches silver, India’s first medal at 2020

On 16th December, 2020 India’s Women wrestler Anshu Malik won the Silver medal in the 57 Kg category at the Individual World Cup 2020 held at Belgrade, Serbia. She won the first and only medal winner in the event where Indian side was represented by 24 wrestlers.
i.In the Gold medal fight, Anshu Malik lost to reigning European champion Anastasia Nichita of Moldova.
ii.19-year-old Anshu Malik won her first medal at international level in her 3rd event.
About Individual World Cup 2020:
The Individual World Cup came as a replacement to the 2020 World Championship which was cancelled due to less participants because of the pandemic.
3 categories- Freestyle, Greco-Roman and women’s.
Organiser- United World Wrestling
About Serbia:
President- Aleksandar Vučić
Capital- Belgrade
<<Read Full News>>

OBITUARY

Former Liverpool manager & France Football Coach, Gérard Houllier Passed Away at 73Gérard Houllier, former Liverpool and France manager, dies aged 73

On December 14, 2020 Gérard Paul Francis Houllier, former liverpool manager & Football Coach, Manager of French National Team passed away at the age of 73 after having a heart operation in Paris, France. He was the head of global football for Red Bull. He was born on 3rd September 1947 in Thérouanne, France.
About Gérard Houllier:
Career
i.He also served as the manager of Paris Saint-Germain, Lens and Aston Villa. He was also the coach of  Olympique Lyonnais.
ii.Under his guidance Liverpool team won the League Cup, the FA Cup, officially known as The Football Association Challenge Cup and the UEFA(Union of European Football Associations) Cup in 2001.
iii.He was part of the Technical Committee of UEFA and FIFA.
iv.In November 2020, he became the technical director of women’s football clubs Olympique Lyonnais Féminin and OL Reign
Awards
He won many awards including  European Football Coach of the Year(2001), Men’s World Manager of the Year(2001) of the World Magazine, Onze Mondial Coach of the Year(2001), Ligue 1 Manager of the Year(2007) among others.

BOOKS & AUTHORS

VP Venkaiah Naidu Released “Oh, Mizoram”, Book of English Poems by P S Sreedharan Pillai Governor of Mizoram Oh Mizoram

On 18th December 2020, M Venkaiah Naidu, Vice President of India virtually released the book titled “Oh, Mizoram”, a collection of poems written by P S Sreedharan Pillai, the Governor of Mizoram. The book is published by Indus Scrolls Press.
Key People:
Jitendra Singh, Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region attended the event along with P S Sreedharan Pillai, PU Zoramthanga Chief Minister of Mizoram, Prafulla Ketkar Editor-Organiser(Weekly) and other dignitaries.
About the Book:
i.This is the first poem collection written by P S Sreedharan Pillai.
ii.The book displays his love for nature and the poems portray the magnificence of Mizoram at its best.
iii.The poems describe the contrast of life in metropolitans and the serene environment of Mizoram.
iv.The poems also showcase the moral decay in politics, the effects of socio-economic scenario, urbanisation and modern lifestyle on our family system.
About P S Sreedharan Pillai:
i.PS Sreedharan Pillai was born in Alappuzha, Kerala.
ii.He worked as a lawyer in the High Court of Kerala and he served as the senior Central Government Standing Counsel (Assistant Solicitor General) from 2001 to 2003.
iii.He was well known as a writer and columnist in Kerala and he has written more than 125 books in Malayalam and English.
iv.He became the Governor of Mizoram on 5th November 2019.

EAM S. Jaishankar launched book titled, “Reporting India:My Seventy 0Year Journey As A Journalist” by ANI Chairman Prem PrakashJaishankar launches book titled “Reporting India

On 18th December, 2020 External Affairs Minister(EAM) S. Jaishankar virtually launched the book ‘Reporting India: My Seventy-Year Journey as a Journalist’ written by Asia News International (ANI) Chairman Prem Prakash. The book came as an outcome of the author’s experience over the years, where he has interacted with almost all the Prime Ministers of India.
Highlights of the Book:
i.The book includes all key events in the history of India from a foreign policy perspective covering events over 50 years.
ii.Book highlighted the momentous events like liberation of Goa, 1962 war with China, Rise of Indira Gandhi after Vallabhai Patel’s death, attack on PM Rajiv Gandhi in Colombo and events of Afghan War.
Event Organiser- Prabha Khaitan Foundation
Book Publisher- Penguin India

STATE NEWS

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik launches PAReSHRAM portal with 22 online services of Different Labour LawsOdisha CM Naveen Patnaik launches Pareshram portal

On December 17, 2020 Naveen Patnaik, Chief Minister of Odisha virtually launched PAReSHRAM portal with 22 online services of different labour laws and Employees State Insurance (E.S.I)Department under the 5T initiative of the state govt.
5T– Technology, Transparency, Teamwork and Time Leading to Transformation.
Note
The portal will provide 52 types of services shortly.
Benefits:
i.The online services will help in Ease of Doing Business and also contribute to Industrial development of the State.
ii.The portal benefits the industries, commercial organisations, small entrepreneurs and the public.
iii.The entrepreneurs get registration certificate, licence, approval of design of the plant, renewal and other relevant services from PAReSHRAM portal.
iv.Apart from this, application forms for different services and payments will be available in the portal.
About Odisha:
Wildlife Sanctuary(WLS)– Kapilash WLS, Khalasuni WLS, Kuldiha WLS, Kotagarh WLS, Baisipalli WLS, Nandankanan WLS
Tiger Reserve– Similipal Tiger Reserve, Satkosia Tiger Reserve

Justice S Muralidhar was Elevated as CJ of Orissa High Court

Justice S Muralidhar, Judge of Punjab & Haryana High Court has been elevated as the Chief Justice(CJ) of Orissa High Court(HC). Prior to his transfer to Punjab & Haryana HC he served as the judge in his parent high court in Delhi. The elevation was recommended by the Supreme Court Collegium chaired by Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde
Mohammad Rafiq, the current CJ of Orissa has been transferred to Madhya Pradesh HC.
Other elevations:
i.Justice Hima Kohli, senior judge of Delhi High Court has been recommended as the CJ of Telangana HC.
ii.Justice Sanjib Banerjee one of the senior judges of Calcutta HC has been elevated as CJ of Madras high court.
iii.Justice Pankaj Mithal of Allahabad HC, serving as senior judge on the Lucknow Bench, has been recommended as the new CJ of Jammu and Kashmir HC.
iv.Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia of Uttarakhand HC has been elevated as the CJ of Gauhati HC.

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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)

S.no Current Affairs 20 & 21 December 2020
1 Piyush Goyal launched “Enhancing India Australia Bilateral Economic and Trade Relationship” In New Delhi
2 35th edition of IND-INDO CORPAT 2020 between the Indian Navy and the Indonesian Navy Held
3 Overview of British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab’s 3-day visit to India
4 MoFPI Signed Joint Communique with MoTA along with 5 MoUs with TRIFED, ICAR, NSFDC, NAFED and NCDC for PM-FME
5 RK Singh Launches India’s 1st CoE for Skill Development in Power Sector at NISE, Haryana
6 EAM  Jaishankar virtually Addresses the 2020 GTS – 5th Edition organized by MEA, CI
7 India-Maldives held Defence Cooperation Webinar and Expo
8 20th Meeting of IORA Council of Ministers hosted Virtually by UAE; France Joined IORA as its 23rd Member
9 India ranks 111 out of 162 countries in the Human Freedom Index 2020; New Zealand tops the index
10 ADB & Govt of India Signs $4.21 million PRF Facility for Tripura Urban and Tourism Development Project
11 RBI Further Extends Restrictions on PMC Bank till March 31, 2021
12 RBI extended CKYCR to Legal Entities from Individual Accounts w.e.f. April 1, 2021: December 2020
13 PayU Collaborates with Google Pay to Introduce Tokenised Payments Flow for Merchants
14 NPCI Introduced RuPay Contactless (Offline) feature
15 India’s Retail inflation Declined to 6.93% in November 2020: CPI Data
16 Amar Singh College Receives ‘Award of Merit’ in the 2020 UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation
17 Sukhbir Singh Sandhu Chairman of NHAI gets 2nd Extension of 6 Months
18 Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh hands 3 DRDO Developed systems to Chiefs of 3 Armed Forces
19 Russia launches 36 UK Telecom Satellite into Space
20 Wrestler Anshu Malik wins India’s First Medal at the Individual World Cup 2020
21 Former Liverpool manager & France Football Coach, Gérard Houllier Passed Away at 73
22 VP Venkaiah Naidu Released “Oh, Mizoram”, Book of English Poems by P S Sreedharan Pillai Governor of Mizoram
23 External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar launches book Written by ANI Chairman Prem Prakash
24 Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik launches PAReSHRAM portal with 22 online services of Different Labour Laws
25 Justice S Muralidhar was Elevated as CJ of Orissa High Court