Monday, 23 November 2020


                     BITA (Banking Institute & TNPSC Academy)


1. India becomes 4th nation to get IMO nod for navigation satellite system

  • The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) has been recognised by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) as a part of the World Wide Radio Navigation System (WWRNS) for operation in the Indian Ocean Region.
  • India has become the fourth country in the world to have its independent regional navigation satellite system recognised by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).
  • The other three countries that have its navigation systems recognised by the IMO are the US, Russia and China.
  •  The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) was designed to provide accurate position information services to assist in the navigation of ships in Indian Ocean waters.
  • The Director-General of Shipping (DGS) had approached the IMO for granting recognition to the IRNSS as a component of the WWRNS, similar to the US-owned Global Position System (GPS) or Russia’s Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS) – a process that took two years.
  • The IRNSS was a modern and more accurate navigation system and at any given time, there are at least 2,500 merchant vessels in Indian waters that will now be able to use the system.
  • The IRNSS will be used to assist in the navigation of ships in ocean waters within the area of approximately 1,500 km from the Indian boundary.

2. PM Modi laid the foundation stone of rural drinking water supply projects in UP

  •  Prime Minister Narendra Modi has laid the foundation stone of rural drinking water supply projects in Mirzapur and Sonbhadra districts of Vindhyachal region in Uttar Pradesh via video conference.The total estimated cost of the projects is around Rs 5,555.38 Crore.

  • The projects will provide household tap water connections in all rural households of 2,995 villages and will benefit about 42 lakh population of these districts.

  •  Village Water and Sanitation Committees/ Paani Samiti have been constituted in all these villages, who will shoulder the responsibility of operation and maintenance.The projects are planned to be completed in 24 months.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

             Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh: Yogi Aditya Nath;

             Governor: Anandiben Patel.

3. 2nd Trilateral Maritime Exercise SITMEX-20 held in Andaman Sea

  • The 2nd edition of India, Singapore and Thailand Trilateral Maritime Exercise SITMEX-20 was conducted from in the Andaman Sea.The 2020 edition of the exercise is being hosted by Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN).

  • Indian Navy (IN) Ships including indigenously built ASW corvette Kamorta and missile corvette Karmuk participated in the exercise.

  • The SITMEX series of exercises are conducted to enhance mutual inter-operability between IN, RSN and Royal Thai Navy (RTN) and also strengthen mutual confidence and develop common understanding and procedures towards enhancing the overall maritime security in the region.

  •   The first edition of SITMEX was hosted by Indian Navy in 2019 off Port Blair.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

        Prime Minister of Thailand: Prayut Chan-o-cha.

        Thailand Capital: Bangkok.

        Thailand Currency: Thai baht.

        Singapore Currency: Singapore dollar.

        Singapore Capital: Singapore.

        Prime Minister of Singapore: Lee Hsien Loong.

4.Cabinet Secretary chairs National Crisis Management Committee meet on impending cyclonic storm

  • Union Cabinet Secretary, Rajiv Gauba chaired a meeting of the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) on November 23, 2020 to review the status of impending Cyclone.
  • He held video conferencing with the Chief Secretaries of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, during which they briefed the NCMC about their preparedness and mentioned that the authorities are fully prepared to meet any eventuality.
  • The Chief Secretaries of the concerned states also informed about the coordination with the NDRF and other agencies to meet this challenge.
  • According to the Meteorological Department of India, there is cyclonic disturbance in the Bay of Bengal, which is expected to develop into a 'severe cyclonic storm' by November 24 evening. 


5. G20 leaders commend Japan's determination to host Tokyo Olympics in 2021

  •  The G20 leaders during the final declaration of the Summit on November 22, 2020 stated that they commend Japan's determination to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 next year. 

  • They said that it is a symbol of humanity's resilience and global unity in overcoming COVID-19.They also stated that they look forward to the Beijing Winter Olympics in 2022. Highlighting the importance of sports, IOC President Thomas Bach said that “sport can save lives and during this coronavirus crisis, we all have seen how important sport is for physical and mental health.

  • "The IOC President further asked the G20 participants to support the political neutrality of the Olympic Games and the International Olympic Committee, allowing them to make the Olympic and Paralympic Games symbol of global solidarity. 

·         WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus also expressed support for the IOC and the Olympic Games. 

·         The 2020 Tokyo Olympics was postponed to next year due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic earlier this year. The much-awaited event will now be held from July 23 to August 8, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. Japan will also host the Paralympics from August 24 to September 5, 2021.


6. Antony Blinken likely to be nominated as US Secretary of State under Joe Biden’s administration

·         Antony J Blinken is likely to be nominated as the US Secretary of State under President-Elect Joe Biden’s administration, succeeding Micheal Pompeo. Blinken is one of Biden’s closest foreign policy advisors.

·         Blinken is likely to initiate work towards uniting sceptical international partners into a renewed competition with China.

·         The 58-year-old had formerly served as Deputy Secretary of State under former President Barack Obama.

·         He has been at Biden’s side for nearly 20 years and was Biden’s national security adviser when he was the US vice-president.

7. Ethanol Blended Programme in India

  •    Earlier, the government set a target of 10% mixing ratio of fuel-grade ethanol and gasoline by 2022 and 20% mixing ratio by 2030, but now the government is making plans to achieve the 20% mixing ratio target.

  •  Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) programme was launched in January, 2003. The programme sought to promote the use of alternative and environment-friendly fuels and to reduce import dependency for energy requirements.

8. RBI becomes the world’s 1st central bank to reach 1 mn followers on Twitter
  •   The Reserve Bank of India has become the first central bank with one million Twitter followers. This way RBI is ahead of the US Federal Reserve (6.67 lakh) and European Central Bank (5.91 lakh).

9. RBI’s Mohanty panel calls for allowing higher stake by private bank promoters

  •    A report of the Internal Working Group of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) was set up in June 2020 under Mohanty.

  •  The panel has recommended allowing bank promoters to hold 26% over a period of 15 years from the current 15%.


10. National Pharmacy Week (NPW) celebrated from Nov 16 to 22
  •  The Indian Pharmaceutical Association (IPA) celebrated the National Pharmacy Week (NPW) from November 16 to 22, 2020. Theme: “Pharmacists: Frontline Health Professionals”.

 11. Global Conference on Criminal Finances and Cryptocurrencies organized

  •   The virtual 4th Global Conference on Criminal Finances and Cryptocurrencies was organised by the Interpol, Europol and the Basel Institute on Governance.

·          The conference stressed on the recommendations on capacity building measures and on ways to probe virtual assets and establishing clear regulatory framework to prevent money laundering.


12. United Nations Population Award announced
  • Bhutan’s Queen Mother Gyalyum Sangay Choden Wangchuck has been awarded the United Nations Population Award.

·         The award has been presented to her in the individual category for 2020 for her work on sexual health and ending gender violence.


13. Athletics Federation of India’s High-Performance Director quits

 ·         Athletics Federation of India’s High-Performance Director Volker Herrmannhas quit from his post. His contract was extended by the Sports Ministry till the end of 2024 Olympics,

 14. Indian Navy gets 9th P-8I anti-submarine warfare aircraft

  • Indian Navy has got its ninth Boeing P-8I long-range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft, part of the nearly $1 billion deal with the US for four additional planes signed in 2016. India, which had first signed a contract for eight such aircraft in 2009, is also negotiating a deal for six more P-8Is with the US under the government-to-government route.

  • While the ninth aircraft was scheduled to be handed over to the Indian Navy in July this year, the Covid pandemic delayed plans. The remaining three are scheduled to be handed over to India in 2021. Incidentally, the aircraft, the latest of which landed at INS Hansa in Goa.

  • The P-8I is equipped for long-range anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance in support of the broad area, maritime and littoral operations.

  • Incidentally, its communication and sensor suite includes indigenous equipment developed by defence PSUs and private manufacturers.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams: 

        Chief of Naval Staff: Admiral Karambir Singh.

15. 15th G20 Summit held under the chairmanship of Saudi Arabia

  • The 15th G20 Summit was held under the chairmanship of Saudi Arabia. King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia chaired the Summit through video-conferencing, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • The two-day Summit was held under the theme “Realising the Opportunities of the 21st Century for All”.

  • The focus of the G20 Summit was on an inclusive, resilient, and sustainable recovery from the COVID-19 and the leaders discussed pandemic preparedness and the ways and means to restore jobs.

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi, participated in the Summit along with the respective Heads of State/ Government of 19 member countries, EU, other invited countries and international organizations.

  • Italy will take over the Presidency of the 16th G20 on 1st December 2020.

16. LIC launches 1st digital app ‘ANANDA’

  • Life Insurance Corporation of India has launched a digital application for agents for onboarding to get a life insurance policy.

  • The Digital Application is called “ANANDA”, which is an acronym for Atma Nirbhar Agents NewBusiness Digital Application.

  • The Digital application is a tool for the onboarding process to get the life insurance policy through a paperless module with the help of the agent or intermediary.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams: 

        Life Insurance Corporation of India Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra.

        Life Insurance Corporation of India Chairperson: M R Kumar.

        Life Insurance Corporation of India Founded: 1 September 1956.

17. NASA-ESA successfully launches Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite

  • The US space agency NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) successfully launched ‘Copernicus Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite’, to monitor the rising global sea level.

  •  The joint US-European satellite lifted off on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 4E at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

  • The Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite will help to enhance weather forecasts and provide detailed information on large-scale ocean currents to support ship navigation near coastlines.

  • The US-EU collaboration for the monitoring of sea-level record began in 1992 with the TOPEX/Poseidon satellite and followed by Jason-1 (2001), OSTM/Jason-2 (2008), and eventually, Jason-3 (2016).

  •  This Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite will be followed in 2025 by its twin, Sentinel-6B.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams: 

                The administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration: Jim Bridenstine.

                Headquarters of NASA: Washington D.C., United States.

18. EIU’s Worldwide Cost of Living (WCOL) Index 2020 announced

  • The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has released its biannual ‘Worldwide Cost of Living (WCOL)’ report of the World’s Most Expensive Cities in 2020, based on their cost of living.

  • Hong Kong (China), Paris (France) and Zurich (Switzerland) share the top spot as the most expensive cities in the list, which comprises of 133 cities.

  •  Damascus (Syria), Taskent (Uzbekistan), Lusaka (Zambia) ranked the last three spot as the most cheapest cities in the list, which comprises of 133 cities.

  •  The report took into account the price of 138 items, used in every day for survival, and the falling or rising value of that country’s currency due to Covid to rank the cities accordingly.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

            Economist Intelligence Unit Headquarters: London, United Kingdom.

            Economist Intelligence Unit Founded: 1946.

19. Sahitya Academy award winner Shaik Khaja Hussain passes away

  • Noted Telugu poet, journalist, scriptwriter, and Kendra Sahitya Academy award winner Shaik Khaja Hussain, popularly known as Devi Priya, passed away.

  •  He was born in Tadikonda in Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh. He bagged the Sahitya Akademi Award 2017, for his book Gaali Rangu.

  •  His “Running Commentary” on contemporary politics in Udayam Telugu daily was very popular and thought-provoking.

20. India’s first ‘Moss Garden’ comes up in Nainital district

  • The Uttarakhand forest department has dedicated the newly-built Moss Garden to the people, claiming that it is the country’s first such garden, spread over 10 hectares in Kumaon’s Nainital district.

  • The moss garden, which took nearly a year to build, was inaugurated by Water Man of India Rajendra Singh.

  •  The state forest department had approved research projects to study moss species, considered the most significant indicator of ecosystem fluctuations as they are more sensitive towards habitat and climate changes.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

                Uttarakhand Chief Minister: Trivendra Singh Rawat.

                Governor of Uttarakhand: Baby Rani Maurya.



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