Current Affairs

19 December, 2020


12th Meeting of India-Australia JWG on Counter-Terrorism held virtually

The 12th Meeting of India-Australia Joint Working Group (JWG) on Counter-Terrorism was held virtually. Mahaveer Singhvi, Joint Secretary for Counter Terrorism in the Ministry of External Affairs of India led the Indian side & Tony Sheehan, Deputy Secretary International Security, Humanitarian and Consular Group, Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade of Australia led the Australian side.
i.Both countries called for immediate action to ensure territories under their control are not being used for terrorist attacks.
ii.India, Australia strongly opposed the use of terrorist proxies for cross-border terrorism.
iii.Both Countries exchanged views regarding banning of terrorist individuals/entities as a tool to combat terrorism.
iv.Both sides called for a coordinated action against all terrorist network
About Australia:
Capital– Canberra
Currency– Australian dollar
Prime Minister– Scott John Morrison

3rd Meeting of Joint Working Group on Shipping between India-Denmark held Virtually

i.The 3rd meeting of Joint Working Group (JWG) on shipping between India and Denmark was held virtually to identify areas of co-operation between the two countries.
ii.Indian Delegation was led by the Secretary, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) Dr. Sanjeev Ranjan while Denmark Delegation was represented by DG, Danish Maritime Authority, Andreas Nordseth.
iii.Both side agreed on cooperation on matters of mutual interest in the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) by holding web-meetings in negotiations concerning greenhouses gas emissions.
iv.The Indian side proposed to extend invitation to the Technical University of Denmark (DPU) to become a global partner in the Maritime Knowledge Cluster being developed by India.
About Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW):
Minister of State (MoS)-Independent Charge (I/C)– Mansukh Laxmanbhai Mandaviya

India, Indonesia hold the 4th Bilateral JWG meeting on Drug Control Cooperation virtually

India, Indonesia hold the 4th Bilateral JWG meeting on Drug Control Cooperation virtually


VP Venkaiah Naidu virtually Inaugurates the 12th GRIHA Summit 2020 organized by GRIHA Council, Hyderabad

Vice President (VP) Venkaiah Naidu virtually inaugurated the 12th GRIHA (Green Rating for Integrated Habitat Assessment) Summit 2020organized by GRIHA Council, Hyderabad, Telangana from December 15-16, 2020. The Summit was a Virtual Conference.
i.Theme of the 12th GRIHA Summit – ‘Rejuvenating Resilient Habitats’
ii.GRIHA is a National Rating System for Green Buildings, it is an initiative of TERI (The Energy & Resources Institute, New Delhi) & developed by the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy.
iii.VP launched 3 e-publications GRIHA Council – 30 Stories Beyond Buildings, Shashwat Magazine & Version 2019 Manual of the Council.
iv.He called on State Governments to create online portals for providing single-window clearance to green buildings.
About GRIHA (Green Rating for Integrated Habitat Assessment) Council:
President – Ajay Mathur
Headquarters – New Delhi

DAC Approves Military Hardware Procurement worth Rs 28,000 cr during a Meeting in New Delhi

i.A Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) meeting was held under the Chairmanship of Union Minister Rajnath Singh, Ministry of Defence (MoD) in New Delhi where 7 Capital Acquisition proposals regarding military hardware worth Rs. 28,000 Crore were approved.
ii.The procurement proposals include various Weapons/Platforms/Equipment/Systems required by the Indian Army, the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force (IAF).
iii.This was the first meeting under the new regime of Defence Acquisition Procedure (DAP), 2020 and these are the first set of Acceptance of Necessity (AoNs).
iv.The approved Acquisition proposals include DRDO designed and developed 6 Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) Systems or Airborne Warning and Control Systems (AWACS) for IAF, 11 Next Generation Offshore Patrol Vessels for the Indian Navy and Modular Bridges for the Indian Army.
About Ministry of Defence (MoD):
Rajnath Singh Constituency– Lucknow,Uttar Pradesh
Minister of State (MoS)– Shripad Yesso Naik


Snapdeal Partners with NPCI to Enable Doorstep QR Code Payments for Orders

Snapdeal partnered with National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to enable buyers to make Quick Response(QR)-based digital payments on getting delivery of their orders.
Target Customers– New or first-time users who are not comfortable to pay in advance for items at the time of purchase.

IndusInd Bank Partners with Mastercard to Launch its 1st Metal Credit Card ‘Pioneer Heritage Credit Card’ for HNWIs

i. IndusInd Bank in partnership with Mastercard launched its 1st metal credit card, ‘Pioneer Heritage Credit Card’.
ii.This Contactless Credit Card is designed to meet the needs of High-Net-Worth-Individuals (HNWIs), especially of the affluent Indian professionals and entrepreneurs.
iii.This card is a part of the Mastercard’s ‘World Elite’ platform that offers privileges to complement the lifestyle of HNI cardholders.
About IndusInd Bank:
Managing Director(MD)& Chief Executive Officer(CEO)– Sumant Kathpalia
Chairman– Mr. Arun Tiwari
Established– 1994
HeadOffice– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Tagline-We Make You Feel Richer
About Mastercard:
Headquarters – New York, United States
President and CEO-Elect– Michael Miebach
CEO– Ajay Banga(Michael Miebach will take over as CEO by January, 2021)

RBI Invited Application for 2nd Test Phase of Regulatory Sandbox on Cross Border Payments

i.After the commencement of Test Phase of First Cohort under the Regulatory Sandbox (RS) by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on November 17, 2020 now the apex bank has announced the opening of the Second Cohort on the theme of “Cross Border Payments”.
ii.The window for submission of applications by eligible entities for the Cohort will be open from December 21, 2020 to February 15, 2021.
iii.The theme of the first cohort was “Retail Payments” while for third Cohort, the theme will be “MSME Lending”.
iv.This program allows the collaboration of banks, fintech and technology companies to conduct real-time experimental projects under the supervision of the RBI team.
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)


Ministries recognises Yogasana as a Competitive Sport in India

Ministry of AYUSH and Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports jointly announced the formal recognition of Yogasana as a Competitive sport in India. The ministries also plan to conduct ‘National Individual Yogasana Sports Championship’ in february 2021.
About Ministry of AYUSH:
AYUSH stands for “Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy”.
Founded- 9 November 2014
MOS independent charge- Shripad Yesso Naik
About Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports:
MoS Independent Charge – Kiren Rijiju

India Pledges USD 1 Million to WADA’s Scientific Research Budget

India pledged to contribute USD 1 Million (Approximately INR 7.35 Crores) to the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) Scientific Research Budget. The amount will be India’s contribution to WADA’s initiative of raising a corpus of USD 10 Million.
i.India’s contribution is the highest ever contribution made to WADA by a third world country which includes Saudi Arabia, China and Egypt.
ii.The contribution will be used for the development of innovative anti-doping testing and detection methods.
Russia’s Ban:
i.The Court of Arbitration for Sport, Switzerland has banned Russia from Using its name, flag and anthem at the next 2 olympics or any world championships in the next 2 years or Hosting of any major sporting events for 2 years.
ii.It is due to an accusation that Russia tampered with databases containing the samples of Russian athletes at the Moscow testing laboratory.
About World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA):
President – Witold Banka
Headquarters – Montreal, Canada


ISRO’s PSLV-C50 successfully launches CMS-01 satellite from SDSC, Sriharikota

India’s communication satellite CMS-01 was successfully launched by Indian Space Research Organization’s (ISRO) PSLV-C50 (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR, Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh. The satellite CMS-01 was successfully launched into Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO).
CMS-01 is the first communication satellite that ISRO has orbited under its new satellite naming scheme.
i.It will provide Telecom services in the Extended-C band of the Frequency spectrum which includes Indian mainland, Andaman-Nicobar & Lakshadweep islands.
ii.It has a mission life of 7 years and will replace GSAT-12 (Geostationary Satellite) satellite launched in 2011.

Poland Footballer, Robert Lewandowski won Best FIFA Men Player Award 2020

Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) awarded Robert Lewandowski, captain of PolandNational Team as the Best FIFA Men’s player for 2020 in its annual award ceremony. The event also saw the distribution of 9 awards related to football.Lucy Bronze of England won the Best FIFA Women’s player for 2020.
Highlights of the Event:
i.Best FIFA Men’s Coach Award 2020 won by Jurgen Klopp for a record second time.
ii.Best FIFA Women’s Coach Award 2020 won by Sarina Wiegman(Currently Coaching Netherland Football National Team).
iii.Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper 2020 won by Manuel Neuer.
iv.Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper 2020 won by Sarah Bouhaddi.
About FIFA:
Headquarters– Zurich, Switzerland.
Motto– For the Game. For the World.
President– Gianni Infantino.
FIFA started to award world player awards in 1991.

SAIL Wins Golden Peacock Environment Management Award 2020

i.At a virtual ceremony, the winners of the 2nd cycle of Golden Peacock Awards 2020 were announced.
ii.The Institute of Directors(IOD) awarded the Golden Peacock Environment Management Award(GPEMA) 2020 to Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) in the steel sector.
iii.SAIL receives this award for the successive 2nd year.
About Institute of Directors(IOD), India :
It is a Society (National Level), registered under the Societies Registration Act XXI of 1860. It was established on 12 July 1990.
Headquarters– NewDelhi ,India
Chairman– Justice M. N. Venkatachaliah
About Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL):
Headquarters-New Delhi, India
Chairman with additional charge of Director (Personnel)– Shri Anil Kumar Chaudhary

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