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CURRENT AFFAIRS: DAYS
World Tuberculosis (TB) Day
- World Tuberculosis Day, observed on 24 March each year, is designed to build public awareness about the global epidemic of tuberculosis and efforts to eliminate the disease.
- The theme ofWorld TB Day 2020 is “It’s TIME”
International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims
- Each year, on 24 March, the International Day for the Rightto the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims is observed.
- This annual observance pays tribute to the memory of Monsignor Óscar Arnulfo Romero, who was murdered on 24 March 1980. Monsignor Romero was actively engaged in denouncing violations of the human rights of the most vulnerable individuals in El Salvador.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: INTERNATIONAL
UK confirmed as first co-chair of India-led global climate initiative
- The UK was confirmed as the first co-chair of the Governing Council on the India-led global Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI). The Coalition was established by Indian Prime Minister NarendraModi and is a voluntary international grouping, linking governments, UN agencies, banks, private sector groups, and academia to develop the resilience of infrastructure systems to climate and disaster risks, the British High Commission stated in a statement.
- The Governing Council is the highest policy-making body of the It is co-chaired by India and a representative of another national government nominated by rotation every two years.
- The UK was represented at the first council meeting by UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Alok Sharma.
- The UK will host COP26 in Glasgow in November 2020.The UK will provide “technical advice and expertise to help set up and build the Secretariat and advance the objectives of the Coalition.”
- The initial focus will be on disaster and climate risk analysis and governance of infrastructure.
- Prime Minister NarendraModi had announced the global Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI), at the UN Climate Action Summit 2019 held in New York City, USA, on September 23, 2019
- Prime minister: Boris Johnson
- Capital: London
- Currency: Pound sterling
CURRENT AFFAIRS: BANKING AND FINANCE
KVB launches prepaid wallet card in Karur
- KarurVysya Bank has launched ‘Enkasu’, a pre-paid card in Karur. In response to the digital initiative of Government of India, the bank undertook ‘Quit Cash Movement’ in Karur – a movement to reduce the usage of cash in the district of Karur.
- Headquartered in Karur, the bank was established 104 years ago. KVB has seven branches in the town with a customer base of 1.60 lakh, out of an estimated population of about three lakh. In spite of providing debit and credit cards to its customers, many of them still prefer to transact by cash. The bank realised that the major impediment in the use of cards is the minimum transaction amount for which a card could be swiped. Those who transacted with cash had to accept alternates to cash such as toffees, chocolates etc from some establishments.
- In order to solve this problem, KarurVysya Bank has introduced Enkasu card. Enkasu works on Near-Field Communication (NFC) technology in a semi closed loop. The cardholder can make ‘tap & go’ payments for even small purchases to merchants for as little as Re 1. Doing away with the need for cash and small change, Enkasu card will be beneficial to both merchants and customers alike. In addition, Enkasu cards are unique in that they can be accepted ‘online’ as well as ‘offline’ thereby, increasing its utility manifold as internet access is not mandatory for its usage
About karurvysya bank:
- Founded :1916
- Head quarters : karur, tamilnadu
- N. S. Srinath (Chairman)
- P. R. Seshadri (MD & CEO)
- Tagline : smart way to banking
Centre rolls back NRI tax, restricts levy only on their income generated in India
- The government has decided to restrict taxation only to the income generated by them from businesses in India, leaving their global income out of any levy. Moreover, taxes would need to be paid only on income of above Rs 15 lakhs.
- The changes formed part of the amendments in the Finance Bill, 2020 proposed by Finance Minister in Parliament. The LokSabha passed the Finance Bill by voice vote without discussion.
- Among the other changes introduced by Sitharaman in the Finance Bill includes a clarification that shareholders will have no tax liability if the company issuing the dividend has paid the DDT before April 1 but the shareholder received the dividend afterwards.
- The budget proposal for taxing dividends in the hands of shareholders by abolishing the dividend distribution tax (DDT) has, however, been retained.
- Further, the TDS rate on payment of dividend to non-resident and foreign company has been prescribed at 20 per cent. The Finance Bill earlier had not provided any specific rate of TDS in respect of payment of dividend to non-residents and foreign companies with the result such dividend would have fallen in residual clause of 40 per cent. The TDS rate of 10 per cent on dividend for resident is already prescribed in the Finance Bill.
- Proposal to levy (tax collected at source) TCS on sale of goods is to continue despite huge paperwork and compliance obligations. However, exemption of such TCS in respect of Export Sales and also to sellers in respect of Import has been provided. But this provision along with TCS on foreign remittance will be applicable from October 1, 2020.
- Moreover, the provision for tax to be deducted at 2 per cent on withdrawal of cash from Bank, Co-opt Bank and Post Officer exceeding Rs. 1 crore in aggregate during the year has been amended. Now, in case of a person who has not filed the returns for preceding 3 years then tax will be deducted at2 per cent on withdrawal exceeding Rs 20 lakhs and at 5 per cent on withdrawal exceeding Rs 1 crore. This provision will be applicable from July 1, 2020.
- Government’s budget proposal on NRIs had dented sentiments as this community is seen as a big investor in the development of the country. The budget not only changed the qualification criteria of NRIs mandating them a higher number of days stay overseas but also introduced a provision that would have made them liable for tax in India on their incomes generated outside the country.
- In the Union Budget 2020-2021, the government proposed to spend Rs 30,42,230crore in the next financial year, 12.7 per cent higher than the revised estimate of 2019-20. By passing the Bill, these financial proposals have been given effect.
- The government has assumed a nominal Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate of 10 per cent in 2020-21, versus the nominal growth estimate at 12 per cent for 2019-20. It expects that receipts will increase by 16.3 per cent to Rs 22,45,893crore, owing to higher estimated revenue from divestment.
UBS cuts India’s FY21 real GDP growth forecast to 4 per cent
- The coronavirus pandemic and the resulting lockdowns led a foreign brokerage to sharply cut India’s growth forecast for the next financial year starting April 1, to 4 per cent from the 1 per cent estimated earlier.
- In a note, UBS Securities stated it expects India to clock a 8 per cent growth in FY20.
- It can be noted that a lot of worries are being voiced on the economic impact of the ongoing pandemic, which has resulted in over 400 Indians getting infected and at least seven deaths. Calls for a stimulus from the government and the RBI are also being made.
- The challenge for India vs its peers is starker if infections spread rapidly considering the higher density of population per capita and weaker health infrastructure,UBS’ economist Tanvee Gupta Jain stated.
- The brokerage stated, increased risks of a global recession and recent mobility restrictions and social distancing measures are moving it to place India under the “severe pandemic” scenario. The real GDP growth will slow to under 5 per cent for the June 2019 quarter, from the estimate of 4 per cent for March, it stated
- UBS Group AG is a Swiss multinational investment bank and financial services company founded and based in Switzerland. Co-headquartered in the cities of Zürich and Basel, it maintains a presence in all major financial centers as the largest Swiss banking institution in the world.
- CEO: Sergio Ermotti
- Headquarters: Zürich, Switzerland
RBI extends priority sector classification for bank loans to NBFCs to FY21
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has decided to extend priority sector classification for bank loans to non-banking finance companies (NBFCs) for on-lending for FY 2020-21.
- As per the August 2019 circular, bank credit to registered NBFCs (other than microfinance institutions) for on-lending was eligible for classification as priority sector up to March 31, 2020.
- A bank can classify fresh loans sanctioned by NBFCs to the priority sector — agriculture, micro & small enterprises (MSEs) and housing — out of bank borrowings.
- In its latest circular, the RBI also stated that existing loans disbursed under the on-lending model will continue to be classified under the Priority Sector till the date of repayment/maturity.
- Bank credit to registered NBFCs (other than MFIs) for on-lending is classified as priority sector under respective categories subject to conditions — on-lending by NBFCs for the ‘term lending’ component under agriculture is allowed up to ₹10 lakh per borrower; on-lending to micro & small enterprises is allowed up to ₹20 lakh per borrower; and on-lending by housing finance companies (HFCs) for housing is allowed up to ₹20 lakh per borrower.
- The RBI stated Bank credit to registered NBFCs (other than MFIs) and HFCs for on-lending will be allowed up to an overall limit of 5 per cent of the individual bank’s total priority sector lending
- Founded : 1 April 1935
- Governor : Shaktikanta Das
- Head quarters : Mumbai Maharashtra
IRDAI sets up panel on governance at insurers
- The country’s insurance regulator has set up a 16-member committee to find ways to improve corporate governance systems of insurers, primarily on making key functions such as risk management and internal audits independent of each other
- The Insurance Regulation and Development Authority (IRDAI) stated that a peer review of its current guidelines on corporate governance “indicated that there is need to further strengthen the guidelines”.
- The committee will be headed by PravinKutumbe, member-finance and investment at IRDAI and has six other members from the insurance regulator besides members from the Reserve Bank of India and the Securities and Exchange Board of India along with other industry participants. It has been asked to submit the report to IRDAI in three months
- The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India is an autonomous, statutory body tasked with regulating and promoting the insurance and re-insurance industries in India.
- Founded: 1999
- Headquarters: Hyderabad
- Chairperson: Subhash Chandra Khuntia
CURRENT AFFAIRS: ACQUISITION AND MERGERS
Cognizant acquires US-based digital marketing firm
- Cognizant Technology Solutions announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Lev, a privately-held, digital marketing consultancy in the US.
- Lev helps businesses simplify and modernise their marketing campaigns using Salesforce Marketing Cloud to provide data-driven insight and personalisation across the customer journey, and ultimately drive revenue.
- The acquisition will further expand Cognizant’s Salesforce practice and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2020, subject to satisfaction of certain closing conditions.
- CEO: Brian Humphries
- Headquarters: Teaneck, New Jersey, United States
CURRENT AFFAIRS: APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATION
Shivraj Singh Chouhan Takes Oath as MP CM for the Fourth Time
- Senior BJP leader Shivraj Singh Chouhan took oath as the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh for the fourth time at a ceremony at the Raj Bhawan in
- The 61-year-old BJP leader was sworn in by Governor LaljiTandon.
- He stepped down after the Congress won a narrow majority in the December 2018 Assembly elections, after which the Kamal Nath government came to power.
- Resignations of 22 Congress MLAs, Nath resigned as chief minister last week, paving the way for Chouhan’s return.
Govt constitutes high level committee of medical experts for prevention & control of COVID-19
- The government has constituted a high level technical committee of Public Health Experts for COVID-19 to guide the prevention and control activities in the country.
- The 21 member committee will be headed by NITI Aayog member Dr V K Paul. Union Health Secretary Preeti Sudan and Director General Indian Council of Medical Research are the Co-Chair.
- Besides, Director, AIIMS, Dr. RandeepGuleria, Director of National Centre for Disease Control, Delhi Dr Sujeet Singh, Director of Institute of Infectious Diseases, Pune Dr Sanjay Pujari and Additional Chief Secretary of Kerala Dr RajanKhobragade are among the members of the Task Force.
Priyanka Chopra collaborates with WHO to spread awareness over COVID-19
- Actor Priyanka Chopra urged followers to rely on authentic sources of information about coronavirus and arranged an Instagram live with top personnel of the World Health Organization (WHO) to raise awareness about the pandemic.
- The live will be joined by Tedros,director-general of WHO, and Maria Van Kerkhove who is a technical lead for COVID-19 at the WHO. CEO of Global Citizen, Hugh Evans, too would be joining the live video.
- Head Quarters- Geneva, Switzerland
- Director General- Dr. TedrosAdhanom
SumantKathpalia takes over as IndusInd Bank MD and CEO
- Private sector lender IndusInd Bank has stated that newly-appointed Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) SumantKathpalia will take charge for three years.
- He will succeed RomeshSobti whose tenure ended a day earlier.
- Kathpalia is a career banker with over three decades of experience in large multi-national banks like Citibank, Bank of America and ABN AMRO, including his stint as Head of Consumer Banking at IndusInd Bank Ltd.
- He has experience across diverse functions including business strategy, sales and distribution, operations, systems, risk and credit management, and financial management
About Indusind Bank:
- CEO: SumantKathpalia
- Headquarters: Pune
- Tagline :We Make You Feel Richer
CURRENT AFFAIRS: AWARDS AND HONOURS
2020 Abel Prize to Furstenberg and Margulis
- The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has decided to award the Abel Prize for 2020 toHillel Furstenberg, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel and Gregory Margulis, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA, “for pioneering the use of methods from probability and dynamics in group theory, number theory and combinatorics”.
About Abel Prize
- The Abel Prize is a Norwegian prize awarded annually by the King of Norway to one or more outstanding mathematicians. It is named after Norwegian mathematician Niels Henrik Abel and directly modeled after the Nobel Prizes. It comes with a monetary award of 7.5 million Norwegian Kroner.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: BOOKS AND AUTHORS
SavitaChhabra, Chairperson, HRIPL authors her debut book ‘Legacy Of Learning’
- SavitaChhabra, Chairperson, HRIPL has launched her debut book, called ‘Legacy of Learning’; which offers simplistic and relatable interpretations of the Bhagavad Gita in an attempt to connect the youth of India to the age-old, but relevant scriptures.
- The book introduces readers to the importance of performing good karma and nudges them to be conscious about the purpose of their lives in every decision they make.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: DEFENCE
US, UAE troops launch major exercise Native Fury
- US Marines and UAE forces conducted the biennial exercise, named Native Fury at Abu Dhabi.
- The exercise saw forces seize a sprawling model Mideast city, a drill conducted amid tensions with Iran and despite the new corona virus pandemic.
- It also comes after the U.S. killed Iran’s most prominent general in a drone strike in January, and Tehran retaliated with a ballistic missile attack on American forces in Iraq.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: RANKING
Singapore tops economic freedom index; India at 120th place
- Singapore overtook Hong Kong as the world’s freest economy for the first time since 1995 in the latest Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom.
- The World Index of Economic Freedom covers 12 freedoms including property rights, financial freedom, government integrity, labour freedom, trade freedom, investment freedom and business freedom.
- India is ranked in 120th position in the study, it has been slowly but steadily making progress. It improved its score by 1.3 points from 2019 to tally 56.5 in 2020 due to improvements in the business freedom score. India’s score in 2017 was 52.6. It is the 28th freest economy among 42 countries in the Asia-Pacific region in the 2020 study.
- China, India’s strategic regional rival is in 20th position in Asia-Pacific and 103rd globally
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Fins of prehistoric fish reveal origins of the human hand
- The researchers examined a remarkably complete fossil of a fish called Elpistostegewatsoni that represents a pivotal stage in a landmark event in the history of life on Earth – the transition of fish to land vertebrates.
- For this to occur, anatomical changes were needed including the evolution of hands and feet. Inside the tip of Elpistostege’s front fins – called pectoral fins – were tiny bones called radial bones arranged in a series of rows like digits – the precursor to fingers. These would have provided the flexibility for Elpistostege’s fin to bear weight on land.
- By looking at Elpistostege, it is important to realize that we, as human beings, are coming from a long line of evolution, that every part of our body, like our fingers, has a long evolutionary history, stated paleontologist Richard Cloutier of Université du Québec à Rimouski in Canada, lead author of the research published in the journal Nature.
- This is true for Homo sapiens but it is also true for all living organisms, Cloutier added.
- This marks the first time such traits have been found in a fish rather than in the earliest amphibians – the first land vertebrates – that later evolved from fish with sturdy fins like Elpistostege. It had two explicit digits and three other apparent digits.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SPORTS
Canada becomes first country to withdraw from 2020 Tokyo Olympic
- The 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo have been thrown into further doubt after Canada became the first major country to withdraw. Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has admitted for the first time that the games could be postponed.
- Australia has stated, it is clear the games cannot go ahead and told its athletes to prepare for 2021 games. The International Olympic Committee is expected to decide the fate of the games in four weeks’ time .The games are currently due to begin on 24th July
- The International Olympic Committee is a non-governmental sports organisation based in Lausanne, Switzerland. Founded by Pierre de Coubertin and DemetriosVikelas in 1894, it is the authority responsible for organising the modern Summer and Winter Olympic Games.
About International Olympic Committee:
- President: Thomas Bach
- Honorary President: Jacques Rogge
- Director General: Christophe De Kepper
- Headquarters: Lausanne, Switzerland
DAILY CA 22ndand 23rdMAR
- World Water Day-22nd march
- World Meteorological Day-23rd march
- ShaheedDiwas or Martyrs Day-23rd march
- Nation observes Janta curfew in fight against Covid-19
- Cabinet approves Production Incentive Scheme for Large Scale Electronics Manufacturing
- SAARC Disaster Management Centre launches website for information related to COVID- 19
- Bangladesh contributes Dollar 1.5 million to COVID 19Emergency fund of SAARC
- Online Tawajudi service introduced to help residents overseas re-enter UAE
- SBI opens emergency credit line to meet any liquidity mismatch for its borrowers
- Insurance, health tech companies announce policies to cover COVID-19
- Google launches dedicated Covid-19search portal in India
- S&P estimates cost of Covid-19 for Asia-Pacific, including India, at $620 billion
- NBFCs seek moratorium on EMIs for at least 3 months
- UP govt announces one month free food grains to poor; Rs 1,000 as compensation to daily wagers
- UP govt seeks Central Grant of Rs. 100 cr for Lucknow University &KashiVidyapeeth
- North Korea test fires 2 ballistic missiles into Sea of Japan
- Researchers in United States discover communication network in plants
- Scientists discover prehistoric wonder chicken
- Legendary Country Singer Kenny Rogers Passes Away
- Former Real Madrid president Lorenzo Sanz passes away
- Noted Tamil screen writer, director and actor Visu passes away
DAILY CA 24thMAR
- World Tuberculosis (TB) Day- 24th march
- International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims –24th march
- UK confirmed as first co-chair of India-led global climate initiative
- KVB launches prepaid wallet card in Karur
- Centre rolls back NRI tax, restricts levy only on their income generated in India
- UBS cuts India’s FY21 real GDP growth forecast to 4 per cent
- RBI extends priority sector classification for bank loans to NBFCs to FY21
- IRDAI sets up panel on governance at insurers
- Cognizant acquires US-based digital marketing firm
- Shivraj Singh Chouhan Takes Oath as MP CM for the Fourth Time
- Govt constitutes high level committee of medical experts for prevention & control of COVID-19
- Priyanka Chopra collaborates with WHO to spread awareness over COVID-19
- SumantKathpalia takes over as IndusInd Bank MD and CEO
- 2020 Abel Prize to Furstenberg and Margulis
- SavitaChhabra, Chairperson, HRIPL authors her debut book ‘Legacy Of Learning’
- US, UAE troops launch major exercise Native Fury
- Singapore tops economic freedom index; India at 120th place
- Fins of prehistoric fish reveal origins of the human hand
- Canada becomes first country to withdraw from 2020 Tokyo Olympic