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Current Affairs 20 April 2024

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Current Affairs 20 April 2024 EnglishWe are here for you to provide the important Recent and Latest Current Affairs 20 April 2024, which have unique updates of Latest Current Affairs 2024 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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NATIONAL AFFAIRS

Three New Archaeological Sites Discovered in TelanganaThree new archaeological sites discovered in Telangana’s OoraguttaA team of archaeologists have discovered a unique Iron Age Megalithic site at Ooragutta near Bandala village in SS Tadvai mandal of Mulugu district, Telangana.

  • The team has also discovered two new rock art sites at Damaratogu Gundala mandal of Bhadradri Kothagudem district, Telangana.
  • One of the sites known as “Devarlabanda Mula” has only depictions of animals and no humans.  It is believed that the paintings dated back to Mesolithic age (between 8000-3000 BCE) since no weapons or domestic animals are shown.

About the Iron Age Megalithic site
i.These new sites have a new type of monuments which were not discovered anywhere in other regions of India.
ii.The New Archaeological site discovered at Ooragutta has unique features which are in contrary to the usual type of megalithic monument known as ‘Dolmenoid Cists’ found in this region.

  • The side slabs are arranged with slabs following the shape of the cap-stone, therefore the ‘dolmenoid cist’ has a unique shape as dictated by the cap-stone.

iii.These monuments can be dated around 1,000 BCE,
Additional info: Most of the monuments in this region have squarish or rectangular shapes.
About the Archaeologists Team: 
The team includes: K.P. Rao, a History Professor at the University of Hyderabad and Ch Praveen Raju, a Research Scholar at Yogi Vemana University, Kadapa(Andhra Pradesh).
About Telangana:
Chief Minister(CM)- Anumula Revanth Reddy
Governor- C.P. Radhakrishnan
Zoological park– Nehru Zoological Park; Vana Vigyan Kendra Mini Zoo (Kakatiya Zoological Park)
Airport– Rajiv Gandhi International Airport; Begumpet Airport

Russia-India Signs Agreement to Operate Large Research Hub in New DelhiRussia-India signs agreement to operate large research hub in New DelhiHSE University (officially the National Research University Higher School of Economics), a public research univerisity in St Petersburg, Russia and the University of Delhi (DU) in New Delhi, Delhi (India) have signed an agreement on strategic cooperation and joint actions.
Under this agreement, a large research hub will begin operating at DU in India.

  • The agreement was formalized during the Indo-Russian Education Summit, held in New Delhi, Delhi from April 11 to 13.

Signatories:
The partnership agreement has been signed by HSE University Rector Nikita Anisimov and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Delhi Yogesh Singh.
Note: HSE University  has been appointed as the coordinator of cooperation between the entire HSE University and DU in India.
About the Hub:
i.The hub will become a modern platform for the development of academic and cultural ties.
ii.The hub also includes a fully equipped HSE University office at the central campus of DU

  • This can be by all HSE University’s research groups, teachers and students as part of joint projects.
  • This will also provide a wide range of opportunities for the implementation of mirror laboratories, educational modules and programmes, as well as academic and scientific exchange projects.

About Indo-Russian Education Summit:
i.The summit was organized by Rossotrudnichestvo, a Russian State Agency under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, along with the Russian House in New Delhi and the Russian Embassy in India. This was the biggest event of its kind in the history of India-Russia bilateral ties.
ii.The summit brought together key stakeholders including university rectors, diplomats, legislators, scientists, and business leaders from both countries to explore collaboration opportunities in education, science, creative technologies, and professional training.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

Skytrax World Airport Awards 2024: Hamad International Airport of Doha (Qatar) Named World’s Best AirportHamad International Airport named World's Best Airport 2024 at Skytrax World Airport AwardsDoha’s (Qatar) Hamad International Airport (HIA) has been named the World’s Best Airport 2024 in the 2024 Skytrax World Airport Awards, held at Passenger Terminal EXPO in Frankfurt, Germany on 17th April 2024.

  • The 2023 Airport of the Year and 12-times previous winner, Singapore Changi Airport (Singapore) secured 2nd place, winning Best Airport in Asia and the World’s Best Airport Immigration Service.
  • Incheon Airport (Seoul, South Korea) ranked 3rd, winning the World’s Most Family Friendly Airport for 2024.

Note:
Skytrax is the London, United Kingdom (UK)- based international aviation research organisation.
About Skytrax:
Headquarters– London, UK
Established in– 1989
Skytrax are specialist Research and Quality Advisor to the air transport industry.
>> Read Full News

Sweden Becomes 38th Signatory to the Artemis AccordsSweden becomes 38th country to sign NASA's Artemis Accords for moon explorationOn 16th April 2024, Sweden officially became the 38th nation to sign the National Aeronautics and Space Administration(NASA)’s “Artemis Accords” which establish a practical set of guidelines for peaceful space exploration and use of outer space.
Signatories: The agreement was signed by Mats Persson, Minister for Education, Sweden and Erik D. Ramanathan, Ambassador of the United States of America (USA) to the Kingdom of Sweden in Stockholm, Sweden.
Switzerland became 37th nation to sign Artemis Accords:
On 15th April 2024, Switzerland became the 37th country to sign the Artemis Accords. Swiss Federal Councillor and Head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education Guy Parmelin on behalf of Switzerland signed Artemis Accords in the presence of Bill Nelson, NASA administrator at NASA’s headquarter in Washington D.C., USA.
About Artemis Accord:
i.The Artemis Accords was jointly launched by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and US Department of State in 2020 with an aim of advancing bilateral and multilateral space cooperation between the signatories.
ii.Artemis Accords was formally signed on 13th October 2020 by 8 founder countries: Australia, Canada, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, the United Arab Emirates(UAE), the United Kingdom(UK) and USA.

  • It is a non-binding agreement with no financial commitments.

iii.It laid down the framework for the implementation of key obligations from Outer Space Treaty(1967).
Signatories of Artemis Accord(as of 20th April 2024):
Angola, Argentina, Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Poland, the Republic of Korea, Romania, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, UAE, UK, USA, and Uruguay.

BANKING & FINANCE

Airtel Payments Bank unveils NCMC Debit and Pre-Paid Cards in Collaboration with NPCIAirtel Payments Bank unveils new eco-friendly NCMC debit and pre-paid cards in collaboration with NPCI On April 18, 2024, Airtel Payments Bank has partnered with National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to introduce eco-friendly NCMC (National Common Mobility Cards) debit and prepaid cards.

  • These cards are powered by RuPay and are crafted from environmentally sustainable e-PVC material.
  • This is in line with Airtel Payments Bank’s commitment to India’s One Nation, One Card vision.

Key Points:
i.Customers can utilize these cards for seamless contactless payments at merchant establishments, both online and offline, including NCMC transit transactions at metros, buses, and parking facilities nationwide.
ii.It eliminates the need for ticket queues. Additionally, they facilitate the issuance of concession and monthly passes, simplifying transit transactions across different transport operators.
ii.Debit cards can be ordered through the Airtel Thanks App or by visiting nearby banking points, while NCMC-enabled prepaid cards will soon be accessible through online and retail platforms, enhancing customer convenience.
About Airtel Payments Bank:
MD & CEO– Anubrata Biswas
Headquarters– Gurugram, Haryana
Establishment– 2017

Amazon Pay ties up with NPCI to introduce credit services on UPIAmazon Pay explores credit on UPI through collaboration with NPCIAs per the report by Financial Express, Amazon Pay in partnership with National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) is set to introduce its credit services on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI).

  • This initiative aims to improve customer experience and value propositions.

Note: UPI is an Indian instant payment system developed by NPCI in 2012 but was introduced by RBI in 2016.
Key Points:
i.AmazonPay was granted a payment aggregator license by the Reserve Bank of India(RBI) in February 2024. Also, it received permission from RBI for a Prepaid Payment Instrument(PPI).
ii.The report cited reasons which restricted the growth of credit for UPI transactions like: many uncertainties related to the interchange fee structure around UPI transactions and low adoption among small merchants.
Amazon Pay partners with different financial entities:
i.AmazonPay collaborated with RBL Bank to enable UPI payments on its platform. It has tied up with ICICI Bank for the FasTag recharge and the introduction of the Amazon Pay ICICI co-branded credit cards.
ii.Amazon Pay tied up with approximately 8.5 million brick and mortar sellers across 350 urban and rural areas, along with 10, 000 online merchants.
iii.Amazon Pay has collaborated with entities like: Axio, IDFC FIRST Bank, and Karur Vysya Bank to offer “Buy Now Pay Later” services.
Note:
i.At present, Amazon Pay has over 100 million customers who uses Amazon Pay UPI for various transactions. It offers instant credit through its Amazon Pay Later option.
ii.Recently, NPCI has launched 3 new features for UPI- linked RuPay credit cards like: EMI facilities, UPI Auto Pay for credit cards and increased credit limits. These features will come effective from 31st May, 2024.
About Amazon Pay:
Headquarters: Seattle, Washington, USA
Founded in: 2007
About National Payments Corporation of India(NPCI):
NPCI is an Indian organisation that regulates the retail payment and settlement system in India. It was launched as a joint initiative of Reserve Bank of India(RBI) and Indian Banks’ Association(IBA). It was set up under the provisions of Payment and Settlement Systems Act(2007).
Managing Director(MD) and Chief Executive Officer(CEO): Dilip Asbe
Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra
Established in: 2008

Ashok Leyland Signed MoU with South Indian Bank For Dealer Financing  
On April 18 2024, Ashok Leyland Limited, a commercial vehicle maker, signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) with South Indian Bank for financing dealers under the bank’s dealer finance program.

  • As part of the partnership, the South Indian Bank will provide competitive dealer finance options to the dealers of Ashok Leyland Limited.
  • This arrangement is mutually beneficial for vehicle manufacturers, dealers and South Indian Bank.

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

8 Indian Origins Featured in the Annual TIME100: Most Influential People in the World 2024Ajay Banga, Alia Bhatt, Sakshi Malik feature on TIME’s ‘100 most influential people’ of 2024TIME, the 101-year-old global media brand has revealed the 21st edition of annual “TIME 100 most influential people 2024” in the world. The list features a total of 8 people of Indian Origins namely Alia Bhatt, Dev Patel, Sakshi Malik, Satya Nadella, Ajaypal Singh Banga, Jigar Shah, Asma Khan, and Priyamvada Natarajan.

  • The TIME100 list, compiled by the American magazine TIME, recognises the impact, innovation, and achievement of the world’s most influential individuals.

About TIME magazine:
CEO– Jessica Sibley
Headquarters– New York, USA
Created in– 1923
>> Read Full News

Mitchell Starc, Usman Khawaja, Harry Brook Among Five Wisden Cricketers of the Year 2024The Five Wisden Cricketers of the Year have been announced in the 2024 edition of the Wisden Cricketers’ AlmanackThe 2024 edition of the Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack has revealed its Five Wisden Cricketers of the Year, highlighting exceptional performances in the world of cricket. They are Australia’s Mitchell Starc, Usman Khawaja, and Ash Gardner, and, England’s, Harry Brook and Mark Wood.
i.Australian Cricketer Travis Head clinched the 2023 Wisden Trophy for his outstanding 163 against India in the World Test Championship (WTC) final at the Oval in London, UK.
ii.Arjun Singh’s photo of players Sanju Samson, Shimron Hetmyer and Dhruv Jurel all competing to take a catch during an Indian Premier League (IPL) match.
About United Kingdom (UK):
Prime Minister– Rishi Sunak
Capital– London
Currency– Pound sterling
>> Read Full News

Ananth Technologies Founder Pavuluri Subba Rao Conferred with ASI’s Aryabhata AwardAnanth Technologies founder Pavuluri Subba Rao gets Aryabhatta award for contribution to astronauticsPavuluri Subba Rao, former ISRO scientist and Founder and Chief Executive Officer(CEO) of Ananth Technologies Limited(ATL) has been conferred the prestigious Aryabhata Award by the Astronautical Society of India (ASI). He was also presented with the “Distinguished Fellow” title by ASI.

  • He received the honor in recognition of his outstanding lifetime contribution to the promotion of astronautics in India.

About Pavuluri Subba Rao:
i.He was a former Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) scientist. He left ISRO in 1991, when he was division head at ISRO.
ii.He founded Ananth Technologies Limited(ATL) in 1992 , based in Hyderabad, Telangana. The company indigenously builds some of the sophisticated avionics for ISRO and the Defence sector.
iii.ATL has satellite manufacturing facilities in Bengaluru, Karnataka.
Aryabhata Award:
i.The award was instituted by Astronautical Society of India (ASI).
ii.The award is named in the honour of 5th Century Indian astronomer and mathematician Aryabhata, and also in commemoration of India’s 1st satellite named Aryabhata, launched in 1975.
iii.The award is presented annually to an individual for his outstanding lifetime contribution for the promotion of astronautics in India.
iv.The recipient of the award receives a citation and cash prize of Rs 1,00,000.
About Astronautical Society of India(ASI):
It was established in 1990 to foster the development of astronautics in the country.
President: Sreedhara Panicker Somanath
Headquarters: Bengaluru, Karnataka

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

DRDO conducts successful flight-test of Indigenous Technology Cruise Missile (ITCM) off Odisha CoastIndigenous Technology Cruise Missile successfully flight-tested by DRDO off the Odisha coastOn 18th April 2024, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully conducted flight-test of Indigenous Technology Cruise Missile (ITCM) from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) located at Chandipur off the coast of Odisha.
Indigenous Technology Cruise Missile (ITCM):
i.The ITCM is equipped with advanced avionics and software to ensure better and reliable performance.
ii.The missile is developed by DRDO’s laboratory Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE) based in Bengaluru, Karnataka, along with contribution from other laboratories and Indian industries.
iii.The successful demonstration of flight-test confirmed the reliable performance of the indigenous propulsion system developed by Gas Turbine Research Establishment(GTRE) based in Bengaluru, Karnataka.
Key Points:
i.The missile performance was monitored by various Range Sensors like: Radar, Electro Optical Tracking System (ETOS) and Telemetry deployed by the ITR at various locations to ensure complete coverage of the flight path.
ii.The flight of the missile was also monitored from the Su-30-Mk-I aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
About Aeronautical Development Establishment(ADE):
ADE is a laboratory of DRDO and is entrusted with the responsibility of conducting research and development in the field of military aviation.
Director: Y Dilip
Headquarters: Bengaluru, Karnataka
Established: 1959

Intel Builds ‘Hala Point’, World’s Largest Neuromorphic System To Enable Sustainable AI
Intel Corporation, an American technology company that manufactures semiconductor computer circuits, has built the world’s largest neuromorphic system code named Hala Point’ to enable more sustainable Artificial Intelligence (AI).

  • It is initially deployed at Sandia National Laboratories, utilizes Intel’s Loihi 2 processor.
  • It aims at supporting research for future brain-inspired artificial intelligence (AI), and tackles challenges related to the efficiency and sustainability of current AI.
  • Hala Point advances Intel’s first-generation large-scale research system, Pohoiki Springs, with architectural improvements to achieve over 10 times more neuron capacity and up to 12 times higher performance.
  • It can support up to 20 quadrillion operations per second, with an efficiency exceeding 15 trillion 8-bit operations per second per watt (TOPS/W) when executing conventional deep neural networks.

SPORTS

Former World No. 1 Badminton Player Kento Momota announces Retirement
On 18th April 2024, former World No. 1 Badminton player Kento Momota of Japan announced that he would retire from badminton after featuring in the 2024 Thomas & Uber Cup for Japan.

  • The 29-year-old Kento Momota is ranked 52nd in the Badminton World Federation (BWF) World Rankings as of 18th April 2024.
  • He won the World Championships and Asian Championships in 2018 and 2019. He won 67 out of the 73 matches that he played in 2019, including 11 titles.
  • He has also participated in the 2020 Tokyo(Japan) Olympics, held in 2021.

Note: The BWF Thomas & Uber Cup Finals 2024 is set to be held in Chengdu, China from 27th April to 5th May 2024.

BOOKS & AUTHORS

PM Narendra Modi Presented with a Book Titled “Sabke Ram” 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi was presented with a book titled “Sabke Ram” by Panchjanya editor Hitesh Shankar and Managing Director of Bharat Prakashan Arun Goyal.

  • The book was published by Prabhat Prakashan, which publishes “Panchjanya,” a Hindi weekly magazine.
  • It narrates the history of Ayodhya and provides details about lord ram’s birthplace and date of birth.
  • The main features of the book is that it can be read and listened to in Hindi and English.

IMPORTANT DAYS

World Liver Day 2024 – April 19 World Liver Day - April 19 2024World Liver Day (WLD) is annually observed across the globe on 19 April to raise awareness about the importance of liver health and to prevent and manage liver diseases.

  • WLD aims to encourage a healthier lifestyle, proper diet, regular exercise, and avoiding harmful substances to maintain liver health.

The theme of World Liver Day 2024 is ‘Be Vigilant, Get Regular Liver Check-Ups and Prevent Fatty Liver Diseases.’
>> Read Full News

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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)

Current Affairs 20 April 2024
Three New Archaeological Sites Discovered in Telangana
Russia-India Signs Agreement to Operate Large Research Hub in New Delhi
Skytrax World Airport Awards 2024: Hamad International Airport of Doha (Qatar) Named World’s Best Airport
Sweden Becomes 38th Signatory to the Artemis Accords
Airtel Payments Bank unveils NCMC Debit and Pre-Paid Cards in Collaboration with NPCI
Amazon Pay ties up with NPCI to introduce credit services on UPI
Ashok Leyland Signed MoU with South Indian Bank For Dealer Financing  
8 Indian Origins Featured in the Annual TIME100: Most Influential People in the World 2024
Mitchell Starc, Usman Khawaja, Harry Brook Among Five Wisden Cricketers of the Year 2024
Ananth Technologies Founder Pavuluri Subba Rao Conferred with ASI’s Aryabhata Award
DRDO conducts successful flight-test of Indigenous Technology Cruise Missile (ITCM) off Odisha Coast
Intel Builds ‘Hala Point’, World’s Largest Neuromorphic System To Enable Sustainable AI
Former World No. 1 Badminton Player Kento Momota announces Retirement
PM Narendra Modi Presented with a Book Titled “Sabke Ram” 
World Liver Day 2024 – April 19

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