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Current Affairs 22 & 23 November 2020

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Current Affairs November 22 & 23 2020 EnglishWe are here for you to provide the important Recent and Latest Current Affairs 22 & 23 November 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 22 & 23 November 2020

NATIONAL AFFAIRS

MoPNG Signed MoUs for 900 CBG plants worth Rs 30,000cr with 8 Oil & Gas Companies & Technology Providers under SATAT InitiativeGovernment signs MoUs for 900 compressed biogas plants

i.On November 20, 2020, Union Minister Dharmendra Debendra Pradhan, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MoPNG) signed Memoranda of Understandings (MoUs) with 8 leading oil & gas marketing companies & technology providers to set up 900 Compressed Bio-Gas (CBG) plants with an outlay of Rs 30,000 Cr across India under the Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation (SATAT) initiative.
ii.The MoUs were inked with 4 Companies viz. JBM Group, Adani Gas, Torrent Gas and Petronet LNG for setting up of Compressed Bio-Gas (CBG) plants, and with 4 technology providers in CBG sectors- IndianOil, Praj Industries, CEID Consultants & Bharat Biogas Energy for facilitating availability of technology for the projects.
iii.Notably, in September 2020, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) included CBG in priority sector lending framework as biofuels can reduce India’s fuel import bill by Rs. 1 lakh crore.
About Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MoPNG):
Dharmendra Pradhan Constituency– Madhya Pradesh (MP)
Secretary– Tarun Kapoor
<<Read Full News>>

IOCL Successfully Tests “zero-emission e-mobility”; Oil India Launched Seismic Survey in Mahanadi onland basin in OdishaIndianOil successfully tests ‘zero-emission e-mobility’

i.On November 20, 2020, the Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL), through its company statement has notified that it successfully conducted a ‘Proof of Concept’ feasibility study on ‘zero-emission electric mobility’ at one of its fuel stations in Bengaluru, Karnataka. This study will help in promoting electric mobility in the country.
ii.In accordance with the study Zero-Emission Electric Mobility is a concept that allows the electric vehicle (EV) to charge using solar power and ensuring zero emissions.
iii.The other oil company, Oil India Limited (OIL) launched the Rs 220 crore seismic survey programme at Kakatpur in Puri District, Odisha in the Mahanadi Basin (Onland) as a part of the National Seismic Programme (NSP). This was launched to locate oil and gas in Indian sedimentary basins.
About Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL):
Chairman– Shrikant Madhav Vaidya
Headquarter– New Delhi
About Oil India:
Chairman & Managing Director (CMD)– Sushil Chandra Mishra
Headquarter– Noida, Uttar Pradesh (UP)
<<Read Full News>>

30th India-Thailand Coordinated Patrol Held in Andaman Sea30th India-Thailand Coordinated Patrol took place between Nov 18-20

i.On November 18-20, 2020, the 30th edition of India-Thailand Coordinated Patrol (Indo-Thai CORPAT) between the Indian Navy and the Royal Thai Navy was conducted in Andaman Sea close to the strategic Strait of Malacca.
ii.The Indian side was represented by Indian Naval Ship (INS) Karmuk, an indigenously built Missile Corvette while the other side is represented by His Majesty’s Thailand Ship (HTMS) Kraburi, a Chao Phraya Class Frigate along with Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft from both the navies.
iii.As part of Mission Sagar-II, INS Airavat arrived at Port of Mombasa, Kenya, carrying food aid for the people of South Sudan.
About Thailand:
Capital– Bangkok
Currency– Thai baht
Prime Minister – Prayut Chan-o-cha
India’s Ambassador to Thailand– Suchitra Durai
<<Read Full News>>

L&T Construction bags order to build 87.56 kms of India’s first Bullet Train Project L&T Construction bags another contract to build India’s first High-Speed Rail Corridor

The Transportation Infrastructure business of L&T (Larsen & Toubro) Construction, the construction arm of L&T secured the contract to build 87.569 Kms of India’s first high-speed rail corridor or Bullet Train Project -‘Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail (MAHSR)’ from the National High-Speed Rail Corporation (NHSRCL).
i.The project is valued more than INR 7, 000 Crores.
ii.The order includes the construction of viaducts, one station, major river bridges, maintenance depots, and other auxiliary works.
iii.This particular package represents only 17.2 % of the total length of the project.
iv.The MAHSR is 508 kms long and will cover 155.76 kms in Maharashtra, 4.3 kms in the Union Territory of Dadra & Nagar Haveli and 348.04 Kms in Gujarat.
v.The High-Speed Rail will operate at a speed of 320 Kmph and will cover the 508 kms in 2 hours with limited stops and 3 hours with all stops.
Funding Agency:
The project is funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and is expected to be completed by 2023.
About Larsen & Toubro (L&T):
Chairman – Anil Manibhai Naik
Chief Executive Officer & Managing Director – S. N. Subrahmanyan
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra

Solar Capacity Addition falls 80% in Q2FY21; MNRE Proposed Wind-Solar Hybrid Park Scheme in StatesSolar-capacity-addition-falls-80%-in-September-quarter

i.In accordance with the report by Mercom Communications India, the solar capacity of India was decreased in Q2FY21 as it added just 438 megawatt (MW) solar capacity, a down of 80% from 2,177 MW the same period in 2019.
ii.As of September 30, 2020, India’s total solar installed capacity was at 37.4 Gigawatt (GW).
iii.The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has proposed “Development of Wind Parks/Wind-Solar Hybrid Park” scheme with proper infrastructure including evacuation facilities in place.
iv.It aims to address the issues faced by renewable energy projects, in particular wind energy projects.
About Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE):
Minister of State (MoS)-Independent Charge (I/C)– Raj Kumar Singh
Headquarter– New Delhi
<<Read Full News>>

Navies of India, US, Japan, Australia participate in the 2nd Phase of Malabar Naval Exercise 2020 held in Arabian Sea2nd-phase-of-Malabar-exercise-between-India,-US,-Australia

Phase 2 of the 24th Edition of the Four-nation Naval Exercise Malabar 2020 took place in the Arabian Sea from November 17-20, 2020. This is the First time since 2007, that all the QUAD (Quadrilateral Security Dialogue) Countries (India, United States, Japan, Australia) are participating in the Malabar Naval Exercise.
i.INS Aircraft Carrier Vikramaditya of India and F/A-18 fighters and United States’ E2C Hawkeye from USS Nimitz (World’s Largest Warship), Australian Navy deployed its HMAS (Her Majesty’s Australian Ship) Ballarat, an Anzac-class frigate.Japanese Navy sent its leading destroyer JS Murasame for the exercise.
ii.Both Phase-1 & Phase-2 of the exercise was restricted to sea phase and were conducted in “Zero Contact” format due to Pandemic.
iii.Australia is taking part in the exercise for the first time after 2007.
About Indian Navy:
Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS)– Admiral Karambir Singh
Integrated Headquarters MoD (Navy)– New Delhi
<<Read Full News>>

FIGO, UNICEF India, FOGSI & 3 other organizations partner to strengthen POSHAN AbhiyaanInternational-Federation-Of-Gynecology-And-Obstetrics,-UNICEF-India,-FOGSI-And-3-Others-Partner-For-POSHAN-Abhiyaan

6 Organizations – International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO), UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) India, Federation of Obstetric and Gynaecological Societies of India (FOGSI), Pregnancy and Obesity Nutrition Initiative (PONI), Alive & Thrive, Nutrition International and ARTIST for Her (Asian Research & Training Institute for Skill Transfer) have partnered to strengthen the implementation of the POSHAN (Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition) Abhiyaan.
POSHAN Abhiyaan:
POSHAN Abhiyaan was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 8 March, 2018 (International Women’s Day) from Jhunjhunu in Rajasthan to improve nutritional outcomes for Children (0-6 years), Pregnant Women and Lactating mothers.
About UNICEF India:
UNICEF Representative in India– Dr. Yasmin Ali Haque
About NITI Aayog:
Chief Executive Officer– Amitabh Kant
Headquarters– New Delhi
<<Read Full News>>

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

12th Counter Terrorism Dialogue between India and the European Union held virtually12th India-European Union Counter Terrorism Dialogue held virtually

On November 19, 2020, The 12th Counter Terrorism Dialogue was held virtually between India and the European Union (EU). During the meeting both sides accepted to support each other in their fight against terrorism. The Dialogue was co-chaired by Mr Mahaveer Singhvi, Joint Secretary for Counter Terrorism, Ministry of External Affairs of India and Ms Joanneke Balfoort, Director for Security Policy, European External Action Service.
i.Both EU & India discussed Sanctions as a tool to combat terrorism.
ii.Discussions were held on the working arrangement between Europol and the Indian Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and EU law enforcement authorities to prevent and combat organised crime and terrorism.
About European Union (EU):
27 Members – Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain & Sweden.
The United Kingdom withdrew from the European Union on 31 January 2020.
European Parliament president – David-Maria Sassoli (Italy)
Headquarters– Brussels, Belgium
<<Read Full News>>

India’s Param Siddhi bags 62nd Rank in TOP500 list of most powerful non-distributed computer systems in the WorldIndia's-Param-Siddhi-bags-62nd-rank-in-list-of-500

According to 56th Edition of the TOP500 project which ranks and details the 500 most powerful non-distributed computer systems in the world, India’s Supercomputer – PARAM Siddhi-AIRanked 62 in the list of most powerful non-distributed computer systems in the World.Japan’s Fugaku topped the list, the second & third rank were taken by US (United States) Supercomputers “Summit” & “Sierra”.
Rank of India’s Supercomputer –PARAM Siddhi is 62.Click here to know more about TOP500 rank.
The Top500 project Rankings are published twice a year.
Pratyush & Mihir:
Another Supercomputer, Pratyush – Ranked 77 featured in the Top 100 while “Mihir” – Ranked 145 featured in the list of Top 500 supercomputers in the list.
Both Pratyush and Mihir are located at two Government Institutes.
About Ministry of Science and Technology:
Union Minister– Harsh Vardhan
Departments under the ministry– Department of Science & Technology(DST), Department of Biotechnology(DBT), Department of Scientific & Industrial Research(DSIR)
<<Read Full News>>

BANKING & FINANCE

Mastercard and USAID Partnered under W-GDP to Launch Project Kirana for Women EmpowermentMastercard, USAID join hands for Project Kirana to empower women through financial inclusion

i.On November 19, 2020 Mastercard and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) entered into partnership under the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP) Initiative to launch Project Kirana.
ii.Project Kirana is a 2 year economic empowerment program for women that drives small business growth through digital financial inclusion.
iii.The programme will be implemented by DAI and ACCESS Development Services in the selected cities of Uttar Pradesh, including Lucknow, Kanpur and Varanasi.
<<Read Full News>>

ADB Approved a $50 Million Policy-Based Loan to Help Boost West Bengal’s Digital Platforms for Public Finance ReformsADB approves USD 50 mn loan to improve resource planning

On November 20, 2020 The Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved a $50 million (about Rs 370 crore)policy-based loan to help boost West Bengal’s Digital Platforms for Public Finance Reforms
Objective
i.To improve operational efficiencies and resource planning and management in West Bengal.
ii.To integrate the financial and information systems and expand the automation reforms in the state govt’s operation, which is expected to strengthen the delivery of public services and generate  fiscal savings.
About Asian Development Bank (ADB):
Headquarters– Mandaluyong, Philippines
President– Masatsugu Asakawa
Membership– 68 countries(Including India)
Formed– 1966
<<Read Full News>>

LIC launches its First Digital Application, ‘ANANDA’ for Agents; 1st of its kind in Indian Life Insurance IndustryLIC launches Atma Nirbhar Agents New Business Digital Application

On November 19, 2020 Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) launched its First Digital Application, ‘ANANDA’ (Atma Nirbhar Agents New Business Digital App).
The digital tool supports the on boarding process to get Life Insurance policy with the help of the Agent / Intermediary without any paperwork. ANANDA is a first of its kind in the Indian Life Insurance industry with LIC pioneering the process through its in-house IT(Information Technology)  enabled systems.
Objective– To facilitate the process of proposal completion that is fully paperless and digital.
Key People
M R Kumar, Chairman, LIC launched the app virtually in the presence of the Managing Directors, T C Suseel Kumar, Mukesh Kumar Gupta, Raj Kumar and other Senior Officials of the Corporation.
Gist about ‘ANANDA’
i.It is built on a paperless KYC(Know Your Customer) process using the Aadhaar based e-authentication of the Life Proposed.
ii.The new business completion process has been redesigned by converting physical formats into digital.
Benefit

  • With this, agents are enabled to complete the policy without the need to meet the customers in person.
  • The prospective customers can avail the facility of taking a New Life Insurance Policy without having to meet the Agent / Intermediary in person.

Additional Info
During the launch event, an e-training video for the Agents was released. The video depicts the key features of the application and the process from introduction to completion of a Life Insurance policy
About Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC):
Chairman– M R Kumar
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Established– 1st September, 1956 by LIC Act, 1956,

ECONOMY & BUSINESS

India’s GDP to Contract by 10.6% in Fiscal 2020 from Earlier -11.5%: Moody’sMoody's-ups-FY'21-India-growth

On November 19, 2020 The Moody’s Investors Service has revised upwards the India’s GDP(Gross Domestic Product) for the Fiscal 2020 (April 2020-March 2021) to -10.6%(contract by 10.6%) from -11.5% projected earlier. The upward revision is due to the latest stimulus prioritizes  manufacture  and job creation, and changes the focus to longer-term growth.

  • It has also projected India’s GDP growth for fiscal 2021-22 at 10.8%, against the previous estimate of 10.6%.
  • The medium term growth is expected to be around 6%.

Note- Moody’s had revised upwards the growth forecast for CY 2020 to – 8.9% , from -9.6% predicted earlier.
Other Key Projection of Moody’s
i.Government debt to rise to 89.3% of GDP in fiscal 2020 and decline to 87.5% in fiscal 2021, from 72.2% in fiscal 2019.
ii.The fiscal deficit of the general govt to reach around 12% of the GDP, with some risk in fiscal 2020 and narrows to about 7%of GDP over the medium term, which will be still above the deficit of 6.5% of GDP in 2019.
iii.In 2020, the median for Baa-rated peers is projected to increase to 60.8%.
Additional Info
i.Government of India among its new measures has allocated Rs 1.46 lakh crore to extend the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme across a further 10 sectors
ii.The govt expects that the companies currently approved under the scheme will generate total production of more than Rs 10.5 lakh crore (5.5% of GDP) over the next 5 years, of which 60% will be exports.
Other global agency Prediction of India’s GDP in FY 21:

About Moody’s:
Headquarters– NewYork, United States
President & CEO– Raymond W. McDaniel, Jr.

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS        

Vinisha Umashankar, TN School Girl won 5th Children’s Climate Prize 2020 for Designing Solar Powered Ironing CartTN schoolgirl wins Children Climate Prize for designing solar-powered ironing cart

On 18th November 2020, Vinisha Umashankar (13 year old), 9th Grade school girl from Tiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu(TN), India won the Children’s Climate Prize 2020 under the 2020 Clear Air Category at the 5th edition of Children’s Climate Prize. She won the award for designing a solar ironing cart which uses solar panels to power a steam iron box instead of the conventional charcoal.

  • Isabella Lövin, Swedish Minister for Environment and Climate and Deputy Prime Minister presented the award to Vinisha over a virtual event.
  • The award consists of a diploma, medal and a cash award of 100000 Swedish Krona(SEK) (around Rs.8.64 lakh)

The Solar Ironing Cart:
i.The solar panels on the roof of the mobile ironing cart is connected to a 100Ah battery.
ii.The panels will produce around 250 watts of power per hour, which will take around 5 hours to fully charge the battery which can power the steam iron for 6 hours.
iii.The engineers of National Innovation Foundation (NIF), Gujarat built the prototype of the cart and have applied for a patent.
About Vinisha Umashankar:
i.Vinisha Umashankar has won the Dr APJ Abdul Kalam IGNITE Award 2019 for innovation.
ii.She is also shortlisted for the Prime Minister of India’s Rashtriya Bal Shakti Puraskar 2021, highest civilian award in India for students under the age of 18.
Children’s Climate Prize:
i.The Children’s Climate Prize was instituted by Swedish energy company Telge Energi in 2016 and from 2020, Children’s Climate Prize foundation will award the prizes annually.
ii.The prize is aimed to enhance the perspective of the youths on the issues of climate change.
iii.Children’s Climate Prize is one of the annual international climate awards for young innovators aged between 12 to 17.
iv.The award recognises the innovators who make an effort for the climate and environment.
v.The winners of the prize will be celebrated at a gala event in Stockholm, Sweden.
Note:
The 2020 award ceremony was conducted as a digital broadcast due to the global pandemic.
Other winner:
i.Aadya Joshi (17 years old) from Mumbai, Maharashtra, India won the Children’s Climate Prize 2020 under the 2020 Changemaker category for her project “The Right Green” a Know how about biodiversity restoration
ii.She developed a database with more than 15000 plant-insect feeding relationships from different ecoregions of India with an aim to enable the communities to restore a healthy ecosystem.
About Children’s Climate Prize foundation:
Founder–  Telge Energi (Swedish energy company)

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATIONS          

GC Murmu, 14th CAG of India Elected as External Auditor of Inter Parliamentary UnionCAG Murmu elected as external auditor of Inter Parliamentary Union

On November 20, 2020 Girish Chandra(G.C.) Murmu, 14th Comptroller and Auditor General(CAG) of India elected as the External Auditor of Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) for 3 years. He will take charge of this position from the Supreme Audit Institution of Switzerland.

  • The election took place at the IPU’s virtual meeting of the 284th session.

Key Info
Mr. Duarte Pacheco has been elected as the 30th President of the IPU. He succeeds Ms. Gabriela Cuevas Barron.
Note– IPU, global organization of national parliaments has the status of being a permanent observer at the United Nations(UN) General Assembly.
Other positions of CAG of India:
i.Presently, CAG of India is the external auditor of the World Health Organisation(WHO) and Food and Agriculture Organisation(FAO).
ii.The CAG of India chairs the Knowledge Sharing Committee, which is one of the four major Committees of International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI). He is also on the Governing Board of INTOSAI.
iii.He is the Chair of the UN Panel of External Auditors.
iv.The CAG also chairs the Asian Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (ASOSAI).
About G.C.Murmu:
i.G.C.Murmu is the 1985-batch Gujarat cadre Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer.
ii.He was appointed as the 1st Lt Governor of Union Territory(UT) of Jammu and Kashmir in October 2019 after its formation under the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019.
iii.He resigned from the post on August 5, 2020.
iv.He has served in many important positions in Indian Govt.
International Organisation for which CAG of India has been the External Auditor:
i.CAG of India has been on the UN Board of Auditors from 1993 to 1999 and 2014 to 2020.
ii.CAG of India also has been the External Auditor of the World Food Programme(WFP), World Intellectual Property Organization(WIPO), International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA).
iii.The list also includes the UN World Tourism Organization(UNWTO), International Organization for Migration(IOM), International Maritime Organization(IMO), The Organization for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons(OPCW).
About Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU):
Established– 1889
Membership– 179 Member Parliaments(including India) ,13 Associate Members
Slogan– “For democracy. For everyone.”
Headquarters– Geneva, Switzerland.
President– Mr. Duarte Pacheco(Succeeds Ms. Gabriela Cuevas Barron)
Secretary General– Martin Chungong

ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS        

CCI Approved Acquisition of Certain Undertaking of Future Group by RRVL &  RRVL WOS CCI approves acquisition of Future Group

On November 20, 2020 The Competition Commission of India (CCI) approved the acquisition of retail and wholesale undertaking and logistics and warehousing undertaking of the Future Group by Reliance Retail Ventures Limited (RRVL) and Reliance Retail and Fashion Lifestyle Limited (RRVL WOS). The approval was given under Section 31(1) of the Competition Act, 2002.
Proposed Combination:
i.Firstly, the Future Group entities will be reorganized by amalgamating with Future Enterprises Limited (FEL).
ii.This list of  Future Group entities that will be amalgamated with FEL comprises of Future Consumer Limited (FCL),Future Lifestyle Fashions Limited (FLFL), Future Retail Limited(FRL), Future Market Networks Limited (FMNL), Future Supply Chain Solutions Limited (FSCSL), and Futurebazaar India Limited (FIL) and its subsidiaries.
iii.After the re-organisation of the Transferor Companies(All the FEL Group Companies), RRVL and RRVL WOS will acquire retail and wholesale undertaking  and the logistics and warehousing undertaking of FEL.
About Transferor Companies :

  • The Transferor Companies consists of many listed and unlisted companies, mainly engaged in retail, wholesale, logistics and warehousing businesses.
  • These businesses operate on a pan-India basis.

Key Info:
i.RRVL is a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited(RIL)
ii.RRVL WOS is a wholly owned subsidiary of RRVL. It has been recently incorporated to carry out various businesses.
About Future Enterprises Limited (FEL):
Chairman & Independent Director – Vijay Kumar Chopra
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
About Competition Commission of India (CCI) :
Headquarters– New Delhi, India
Chairman– Ashok Kumar Gupta
Established by– The Central Government with effect from 14th October 2003

Indian Bank, Canara Bank, Axis Bank, South Indian Bank, Bank of Baroda Acquires 6.67% stakes each in IBBICIndian Bank Canara Axis South Indian Bank buy equal stakes in fintech firm IBBIC

On November 20, 2020 Indian Bank, Canara bank , Axis bank, South Indian Bank, Bank of Baroda(BoB) acquired 6.67% stakes (representing 50,000 equity shares) each in the proposed financial tech firm, IBBIC Pvt Ltd. for Rs 5 lakhs.

  • The acquisition is to be completed by December 31, 2020.

IBBIC Pvt Ltd
i.It is  proposed to be incorporated as a financial technology(fintech) company.
ii.Objective- To provide a  platform to explore, build and implement Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) solutions for the Indian financial services sector.
iii.The company name is subject to approval of the Registrar of Companies(RoC), Mumbai, Maharashtra.
Note– By November 30, 2020, the company registration application of IBBIC will be submitted to the Registrar of Companies, Mumbai.
Distributed Ledger Technology

  • It is a consensus of replicated, shared, and synchronised digital data geographically spread across multiple sites, countries or institutions.
  • It is also known as ‘shared ledger technology’.

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

US Destroys mock ICBM with Ship-Launched Raytheon SM-3 Block IIA for First TimeUS destroys mock ICBM with ship-launched missile for first time

On November 18, 2020, the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System-equipped Navy destroyer, United States Ship (USS) John Finn launched a Raytheon Standard Missile (SM)-3 Block IIA to successfully shot down a mock intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target for the first time during a missile defense test by Pentagon, the US Department of Defense.

  • The missile test was conducted in an area of Open Ocean near Hawaii, United States (US) while the unarmed target ICBM was launched from the Ronald Reagan Ballistic Missile Defense Test Site on the Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands.
  • The USS John Finn collected tracking data from the Command and Control Battle Management and Communications network to destroy the target missile.

About United States (US):
Capital– Washington, D.C.
Currency– United States Dollar
President-elect– Joe Biden (Joseph Robinette Biden Jr.)
<<Read Full News>>

IMO recognizes India’s IRNSS as component of WWRNS; Becomes 4th Nation in the world to have Independent Navigation System recognized by IMOIndia’s-IRNSS-is-now-part-of-World-Wide-Radio-Navigation-System

The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) (operational name NavICNavigation with Indian Constellation) has been accepted as a component of the World Wide Radio Navigation System (WWRNS) for operation in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).  India became the Fourth Country in the world to have its independent regional navigation satellite recognised by IMO.
i.The Other three countries are the United States (US), Russia and China.
ii.The Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) of IMO approved the recognition of IRNSS as a component of the WWRNS during its meeting (102nd session) held from November 4-11, 2020.
iii.IRNSS was developed by ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization). The Government of India approved the project in May, 2006.
About International Maritime Organisation (IMO):
Secretary-General – Kitack Lim
Headquarters – London, United Kingdom
<<Read Full News>>

Pfizer Inc & BioNTech Completed the COVID-19 Vaccine – “BNT162b2” Trial with 95% Success RatePfizer-ends-COVID-19-vaccine-trial-with-95--success-rate

On 18th November 2020, the Pfizer Inc of the United States of America(USA) and its partner BioNTech of Germany completed the Phase 3 trial of their COVID-19 vaccine candidate, BNT162b2 against SARS-CoV-2 with 95% effective, highest success rate.
Pfizer and BioNTech will submit an application to the United States Food and Drug Administration for Emergency Use Authorization and share the data of the trial with other regulatory bodies across the globe.
About the Vaccine:
i.Pfizer stated that the vaccine was well tolerated and has no serious side effects.
ii.Pfizer-BioNtech Vaccine has to be stored at a ultracold temperature of -70 degree celsius i.e, -94 degree Fahrenheit.
iii.The vaccine was developed with new messenger RNA(mRNA) technology that transmits the genetic instruction to teach the human immune system about the generation of virus slaying antibodies.
iv.The cost of the single dose of Pfizer vaccine will be around 20 USD (around Rs.1500).
Key Points:
i.The exhibits to be 94% effective for people above the age of 65.
ii.Pfizer expects to make around 50 million vaccines doses in 2020, which will protect 25 million people and then produce 1.3 billion doses in 2021.
Other vaccines:
i.Moderna Inc., claimed that the pre preliminary results of its COVID-19 vaccine using the mRNA technology showed to be 94.5% efficient.
ii.AstraZeneca and Oxford University are expected to release the final trial results of their AZD1222 or ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine by December 2020.

BOOKS & AUTHORS

Italian Journalist Francesca Marino’s New Book Titled “Balochistan: Bruised, Battered and Bloodied” is set to ReleaseCurrent insurrection in Balochistan

Italian Journalist Francesca Marino’s latest book titled “Balochistan: Bruised, Battered and Bloodied” Published by Bloomsbury India is set to be released in November 2020. The introduction of the book notes that the insurrection in Balochistan has become hostile in 2006 after the murder of Nawab Mohammad Akbar Shahbaz Khan bugti.
The foreword of the book was written by Hussain Haqqani, former Pakistan Ambassador to the United States.
The photographs in the book were taken by Roshaan Khattak.
About the Book:
i.The author describes the book as a work of a journalist who enjoys story telling.
ii.The book states that Balochistan is of a basic strategic and geopolitical importance to Islamabad as well as to the CPEC (China-Pakistan Economic Corridor) project of China among others.
iii.The book features 19 thematic chapters which includes, forced annexation to Pakistan and Jinnah’s betrayal, Nuclear tests, a return to arms, of old and new militancy, ‘Kill and dump’ and other atrocities, Missing persons and the Long March, Mass graves and torture, The CPEC and ‘Free Balochistan campaigns and China’s hand – Mehran Marri’s case.
About Francesca Marino:
i.Francesca Marino is an italian freelance journalist specialized on South Asia.
ii.She regularly contributes for the Limes, Italian review of geopolitics and other popular media of Italy and Switzerland.
iii.She is the Chief Editor of Stringer Asia, an online magazine on South Asia published since 1995.
Books:
i.She has authored “India in 100 immagini. Un fotoreportage”, published by Laterza(Rome) in 2007.
ii.She co-authored the book “Apocalypse Pakistan: An Anatomy of the World’s Most Dangerous Nation” with Beniamino Natale, published by Niyogi Books(India) in 2014.

IMPORTANT DAYS

National Newborn Week 2020 – November 15 to 21National Newborn Week 2020

i.The National Newborn Week is annually celebrated across India from 15th November to 21st November to increase the awareness on the importance of newborn care for the survival and development of the newborn.
ii.The National Newborn week, dedicated to promote the reduction of newborn mortality rate in India. This was conceptualised by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
iii.The theme of National Newborn Week 2020 is “Quality, Equity, Dignity for every newborn at every health facility and everywhere”.
iv.Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of  health and family welfare, chaired the event to mark the National Newborn Week 2020 and released a detailed progress card on India Newborn Action Plan(INAP) (2014 – 2020) targets and roadmap plans.
About Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(MoHFW):
Union Minister–  Dr Harsh Vardhan
Minister of State(MoS)– Ashwini Kumar Choubey
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World Television Day 2020 – November 21World Television Day

i.The United Nations(UN)’s World Television Day is annually observed across the globe on 21st November to recognise the increasing impacts of television on decision making and to focus on the issues like economic and social issues.
ii.The United Nations General Assembly(UNGA) adopted the resolution A/RES/51/205 of 17th December 1996 and proclaimed the 21st November of every year as the World Television Day.
iii.The first terrestrial television in India was started in Delhi in 1959 at a makeshift studio.
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World Town Planning Day 2020 – November 8World Town Planning Day

World Town Planning Day(WTPD) also known as World Urbanism Day is annually across the globe on 8th November to provide an opportunity to unite the planners and celebrate planning around the world. The ISOCARP – International Society of City and Regional Planners promotes the celebration of World Town Planning Day or World Urbanism Day. The year 2020 celebrates the 71st edition of World Town Planning Day.
Aim:
To advance public and professional interest in planning, both locally and internationally.
Objective:

  • To focus on the aims, objective and progress of urban and regional planning across the world.
  • To enhance the contribution of sound planning to the quality of human settlements and their environment.
  • To create awareness about the ideals of urban and regional planning among professionals and the general public.

2020 Events:
During the celebration of WTPD 2020, Conference were organized with the focus of the social pillars of equity, diversity, and inclusion in addressing the Climate Change.

Background:
The World Town Planning Day(WTPD) was initiated by Professor Carlos Maria della Paolera of the University of Buenos Aires in 1949.
Town Planning:
i.Town planning is a technical and political process that analyses the use of land and designs an urban community.
ii.This planning ensures an orderly development of the communities.
iii.It is a dynamic process that modifies the response to policy, development and local needs.

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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)

S.no Current Affairs 22 & 23 November 2020
1 MoPNG Signed MoUs for 900 CBC plants worth Rs 30,000cr with 8 Oil & Gas Companies & Technology Providers under SATAT
2 IOCL Successfully Tests “zero-emission e-mobility”; Oil India Launched Seismic Survey in Mahanadi onland basin in Odisha
3 30th India-Thailand Coordinated Patrol Held
4 L&T Construction bags order to build 87.56 kms of India’s first Bullet Train Project
5 Solar Capacity Addition falls 80% in Q2FY21; MNRE Proposed Wind-Solar Hybrid Park Scheme in States
6 Navies of India, US, Japan, Australia participate in the 2nd Phase of Malabar Naval Exercise 2020 held in Arabian Sea
7 FIGO, UNICEF India, FOGSI & 3 other organizations partner to strengthen POSHAN Abhiyaan
8 12th Counter Terrorism Dialogue between India and the European Union held virtually
9 India’s Param Siddhi bags 63rd Rank in TOP500 list of most powerful non-distributed computer systems in the World
10 Mastercard and USAID Partnered under W-GDP to Launch Project Kirana for Women Empowerment
11 ADB Approved a $50 Million Policy-Based Loan to Help Boost West Bengal’s Digital Platforms for Public Finance Reforms
12 LIC launches its First Digital Application, ‘ANANDA’ for Agents; 1st of its kind in Indian Life Insurance Industry
13 India’s GDP to Contract by 10.6% in Fiscal 2020 from Earlier -11.5%: Moody’s
14 Vinisha Umashankar, TN School Girl won 5th Children’s Climate Prize 2020 for Designing Solar Powered Ironing Cart
15 GC Murmu, 14th CAG of India Elected as External Auditor of Inter Parliamentary Union
16 CCI Approved Acquisition of Certain Undertaking of Future Group by RRVL &  RRVL WOS
17 Indian Bank, Canara Bank, Axis Bank, South Indian Bank, Bank of Baroda Acquires 6.67% stakes each in IBBIC
18 US Destroys mock ICBM with Ship-Launched Raytheon SM-3 Block IIA for First Time
19 IMO recognizes India’s IRNSS as component of WWRNS; Becomes 4th Nation in the world to have Independent Navigation System recognized by IMO
20 Pfizer Inc & BioNTech Completed the COVID-19 Vaccine – “BNT162b2” Trial with 95% Success Rate
21 Italian Journalist Francesca Marino’s New Book Titled “Balochistan: Bruised, Battered and Bloodied” is set to Release
22 National Newborn Week 2020 – November 15 to 21
23 World Television Day 2020 – November 21
24 World Town Planning Day 2020 – November 8