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Important Current Affairs 21st January 2020

National 


Brazil President Bolsonaro to be chief guest at 71st Republic Day

• Brazilian President Jair Messias Bolsonaro will be the Chief Guest at the 71st Republic Day celebrations in New Delhi on January 26, 2020. 
• President Bolsonaro will be on a four-day visit to India and will be leading a delegation of 7 Ministers and the Chairman of Brazil-India Friendship Group. 
• President Bolsonaro will also hold talks with President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

50th Annual Meeting of WEF begins in Davos
•    The 50th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum begins in Davos, Switzerland. On the Indian side, Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal will lead the delegation to the WEF. 
•    This year programme will focus on achieving the maximum impact on the Forum’s platform for public-private cooperation. This year 50th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum theme will be “Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World”.

Madhya Pradesh to observe National Girl Child Day on January 24

• Madhya Pradesh will observe the National Girl Child Day on January 24, 2020 on the theme “Aware girl child-able Madhya Pradesh" under Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao scheme. 
• On the occasion, the state government will examine the health of girls and will create awareness about the rights of girls & daughters.


PM to chair 32nd PRAGATI meeting 

• Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on January 22, 2020 chair the 32nd PRAGATI meeting. 
• PRAGATI is an ICT-based multi-modal platform for effective governance and timely implementation of projects.
• In previous 31 PRAGATI interactions, PM Modi has approved projects worth over Rs 12 lakh crore.


Banking and Economy


Rs 70,000 crore loan amount has been disbursed till Jan 13 under MSMEs scheme: Govt
•    The Finance Ministry has stated that a loan amount of nearly seventy thousand crore rupees has been disbursed till 13th of this month under the scheme of providing loan to Micro Small and Medium Enterprises – MSMEs within 59 minutes.
•    Out of the 2.73 lakh applications received, 2.19 lakh applications have been approved.
•    For  ease of access to credit for MSMEs, the government has introduced loan provision to MSMEs through a dedicated online portal- psbloansin59 minutes.com.
•    The portal acts as a single interface portal which facilitates in principal approval of bank loans to Micro Small and Medium Enterprises upto five crore rupees within 59 minutes.


BEL commissions real time train info system for Railways
•    Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL), the Bengaluru-based defence PSU, has commissioned Phase I of the Real Time Train Information System (RTIS) for the Railways.
•    RTIS provides real-time train information to the Railways thereby increasing its operational efficiency, in addition to enhancing passenger safety.
•    The system has been commissioned through the Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS), under the technical guidance of Space Applications Centre (SAC), ISRO.

India among top 10 FDI recipients, attracts $49 billion inflows in 2019: UN report
•    India was among the top 10 recipients of Foreign Direct Investment in 2019, attracting $49 billion in inflows, a 16 per cent increase from the previous year, driving the FDI growth in South Asia, according to a UN report.
•    The Global Investment Trend Monitor report compiled by United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) states that the global foreign direct investment remained flat in 2019 at $1.39 trillion, a one per cent decline from a revised $1.41 trillion in
•    This is against the backdrop of weaker macroeconomic performance and policy uncertainty for investors, including trade tensions.


Sports

India wins Diplomat Cup Cricket Championship 2020

•    The team of the Indian Consulate has won the Diplomat Cup Cricket Championship of 2020 held in Sharjah. The team of the Indian Consulate defeated the Pakistan Consulate to win the trophy which was organized by Skyline University College in Sharjah. 
•    The Consulate team of 8 countries participated in the tournament. The participating Consulates were: India, Australia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh , Afghanistan, South Africa, Pakistan and the US.


ACQUISITION AND MERGERS


Zomato acquires UberEats India for nearly Rs 2,500 crore in all-stock deal
•    Zomato announced that it has acquired Uber’s Food Delivery Business in India in an all-stock deal and Uber will have 9.99 per cent stake in the Deepinder Goyal-led food delivery platform.
•    It is in the range of over USD 350 million or nearly Rs 2,500 crore. Uber Eats in India will discontinue operations and direct restaurants, delivery partners, and users of the Uber Eats apps to the Zomato platform.
•    We are proud to have pioneered restaurant discovery and to have created a leading food delivery business across more than 500 cities in India. This acquisition significantly strengthens our position in the category stated Goyal, Founder and CEO, Zomato.
 

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Important Current Affairs 20th January 2020

National 


Printing process for Union Budget 2020-21 begins

• The Printing process for the Union Budget 2020-21 began with the Halwa ceremony in North Block on January 20, 2020.
• The Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will be presenting the Union Budget 2020-21 on February 1, 2020. 
• At present, all the officials involved in the preparation of Union Budget 2020 have been subject to “Lock-in” to avoid any prospective leak of information. 

PM Modi interacts with students at Pariksha Pe Charcha 2020

• The 3rd Edition of Pariksha Pe Charcha was held on January 20, 2020 at Talkatora Stadium in New Delhi. 
• Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacted with over 2000 students who would appear for the Board Exams 2020. 
• PM Modi shared interesting tips for exam preparations and also talked about the ways to handle stress and anxiety.

First squadron of Sukhoi-30 aircraft inducted into Indian Air Force

• The first squadron of Sukhoi-30 MKI aircraft was inducted into the Indian Air Force at its Thanjavur base, Tamil Nadu on January 20, 2020. 
• The Sukhoi-30 aircraft has been integrated with the supersonic BrahMos missiles.
• This 222-squadron known as the Tigersharks will serve as a platform for conducting aerial and maritime missions in the Indian Ocean Region.

NDRF Celebrates its 15th Raising Day

•    The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) celebrated its 15th Raising Day on 19th January. National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), a specialized multi-skilled, humanitarian force of the country, came into existence on January 19th, 2006 has been playing a vital role in Disaster Management and Community awareness for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in the country.
•    The NDRF has earned good name and fame nationally and internationally with its selfless service and unmatched professionalism in disaster management. NDRF has saved more than One lakh lives in its 3100 operations and rescued/evacuated over 6.7 lakh people during disasters. A workshop was also be conducted on ‘Urban flooding & challenges’ and ‘Biological Emergencies & New Technology in Disaster Management’.

International

Coronavirus in China: 139 new cases reported so far

• The outbreak of deadly novel coronavirus has now spread to Beijing and Shenzhen cities of China.
• So far, the authorities have reported a total of 198 confirmed cases of coronavirus containment and death of 3 people.
• A few cases of coronavirus infection have been reported from Thailand and Japan as well. 

Awards

‘Castle of Dreams’ gets Best Film Award at DIFF
•    The Iranian film ‘Castle of Dreams’ directed by Reza Mirakarimi won the Best Film Award in Asian Competition section of the 18th Dhaka International Film Festival (DIFF). The film also won the Best Director Award.
•    Indian film ‘Finally Love’ directed by Anjan Dutt bagged Best Audience Award in Cinema of the World Category. Sri Lankan director Prasanna Vithanage’s film ‘Children of the Sun’ won Special Jury Award.

SAG Awards 2020 winners list


The winners of the 26th Screen Actors Guild Awards were awarded at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California, the US on 19 January. The award honours the biggest achievements in TV and film for the year 2019.

Winners' List:
Television Awards:
Television Movie/Miniseries (Male): Sam Rockwell, Fosse/Verdon 
Television Movie/Miniseries (Female): Michelle Williams, Fosse/Verdon
Drama Series (Male): Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones
Drama Series (Female): Jennifer Aniston, The Morning Show
Comedy Series (Male): Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Comedy Series (Female): Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Fleabag
Ensemble in a Drama Series: The Crown
Ensemble in a Comedy Series: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Stunt Ensemble in a Comedy or Drama Series: Game of Thrones

Motion Picture Awards:
Leading Role (Male): Joaquin Phoenix, Joker
Leading Role (Female): Renée Zellweger, Judy
Supporting Role(Male): Brad Pitt, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
Supporting Role (Female): Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Cast in a Motion Picture: Parasite
Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture: Avengers: Endgame

Science & Technology

APEDA sets up 186 Agri products testing laboratories

•    20 January 2020 Current Affairs:Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) has added 135 laboratories to existing 51 recognized laboratories. With this addition of laboratories, APEDA recognition of laboratories has reached 186 laboratories in India. 
•    The move is significant as the Laboratory testing requirements are crucial in the Agri export supply chain. The number of laboratories added includes 35 in Maharashtra, 23 in Gujarat, 10 in Andhra Pradesh & Telangana, 23 in Tamil Nadu 17 in and Karnataka. 

•    APEDA introduced a policy decision for the simplification of APEDA recognition of laboratories to increase the laboratory network further. It has been decided that the laboratories which are National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) accredited will be recognized by APEDA. These laboratories will be added in the network of APEDA recognition laboratories.

Appointment


Union Minister Arjun Munda was elected as the President of AAI

•    Union Minister Arjun Munda was elected as the President of the Archery Association of India (AAI) elections. Arjun Munda defeated his rival BVP Rao by a margin of 34-18 votes. 
•    Munda was elected for a full tenure of four years. The AAI elections were held according to the Delhi High Court order. 
•    The election was held in the presence of an observer each from World Archery (WA), Sports Ministry and Indian Olympic Association (IOA).

GoI appoints Nripendra Misra as chairman of NMML

•    Nripendra Misra has been appointed chairperson of the executive council of the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML). The Executive Council of the NMML has been reconstituted and it will be now chaired by Mr Misra. Dr A Surya Prakash, chairperson of the Prasar Bharati board, will be the council’s vice-chairperson.

•    The Nehru Memorial Museum & Library (NMML) established in the memory of Jawaharlal Nehru (1889 – 1964) is an autonomous institution under the Ministry of Culture, Government of India.

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Important Current Affairs 19th January 2020

National 


Piyush Goyal to lead Indian Delegation to World Economic Forum 2020
•    The Union Minister of Commerce and Industry & Railways, Piyush Goyal, will lead the Indian delegation to the 50th World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting at Davos from January 20 to 24, 2020.
•    The theme of the 2020 meeting is “Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World“.

National Immunization Day 2020
In India, the National Immunization Day was observed on 19 January 2020.
•    As a part of the celebrations, Pulse Polio Immunization programme 2020 was launched where President Ram Nath Kovind administered Polio drops to children below five years at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
•    Under this programme, approximately 17.4 crore children of less than five years of age across the country will be administered polio drops as a part of the immunization drive of the Central Government to sustain polio eradication from the country.

International


New Disease Outbreak: Novel corona virus Grips China’s Wuhan City
•    The Wuhan City of China is in a grip of a new disease outbreak caused by new respiratory virus called Novel corona virus, codenamed as 2019-nCoV.
•    Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
•    2019-nCoV is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.
•    The outbreak has so far killed two people in China and sickened at least 45 persons including overseas cases with some new cases being detected in the city.
•    It is believed to have contracted through exposure to animals market that sells seafood and meat in Wuhan.


Banking and Economy


Mastercard to invest $1 bn in India over 5 years towards tech development
•    Global payments company Mastercard planned to invest nearly $1 billion in India over the next five years. The proposed investment will be made over five years in our India operations includes an R&D facility at Pune and another center at Vadodara.
•    The company is also working closely with technology and financial startups in the country by focusing on the innovation and digital payments matrices under its flagship Start Path program,

Half of World’s GDP Moderately or Highly Dependent on Nature: WEF study
•    The World Economic Forum released The New Nature Economy Report titled ‘Nature Risk Rising’ on 19 January 2020.
•    The report has been published by WEF in collaboration with PwC, UK.

RBI Ranks 6th among central banks in buying gold abroad in 2019: WGC Report
•    The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) was the sixth largest gold buyer abroad in the year 2019, as per the World Gold Council (WGC) report titled, “World Gold Outlook 2020”.
•    The RBI currently holds 625.2 tonnes of gold, which is 6.6 percent of its forex reserves.
•    RBI bought 7.5 tonnes of gold in October 2019, to increase its foreign exchange reserves to $450 billion.
•    The central banks of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Poland bought more than India in 2019 respectively.

NPCI Launches Blockchain-based ‘Vajra Platform’ to Secure Online Payment
•    The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has launched a blockchain-technology based payment system ‘Vajra Platform’ for automating payment clearing and settlement processes.
•    Vajra platform is based on Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), to provide highly secure and tamper-evident transactions stored in a distributed and immutable database.
•    Vajra is a permissioned network that will be set up so that only the parties who have been approved by the Network Administrator can be a part of the network.
•    The platform has three types of nodes: Clearing House node (CHN) for NPCI, UIDAI node for Aadhaar authentication, and Participant node (PN) for all banks/ASP/PPI/PSP

Ranking

Gujarat ranked top for water efficiency Delhi among worst performing states

•    Gujarat ranked the best for parameters on efficiency targets in the review of state and Central government water departments by the ministry of Jal Shakti.
•    Rajasthan is the third-best, and Delhi is among the worst-performing states, according to the ranking for 2019 circulated to different state governments recently. 
•    The seven Central departments reviewed, the Survey of India, got the top billing followed by the National Institute of Hydrology (NIH) and Central Water Commission.


 

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Important Current Affairs 18th January 2020

National 


Conference on Census 2021 held in New Delhi
•    A Conference of the Chief Secretaries and Administrator State and Union Territories on Census 2021 and updating of National Population Register, NPR was held in New Delhi today.
•    Inaugurating it, Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai laid emphasis on the need of conducting Census 2021 and the role of the States in doing the same.
•    He also said that the data collected in the Census helps us in framing policies for the welfare of the people of the country. Mr Rai also inaugurated the Official Mascot for Census 2021.

International


Russia to deliver S-400 air defence systems to India by 2025
Russia started the production of S-400 long-range surface-to-air missile systems for India. The five units will be delivered to India by 2025.
S-400 air defence missile systems
•    The S-400 air defence missile systems are among the best in the world. This will significantly bolster India’s air defence mechanism. In October 2018, India signed a USD 5 billion deal to buy the air defence missile systems.
•    The S-400, an upgraded version of the S-300 previously been available to the Russian defence forces. It is manufactured by Almaz-Antey and has been in service in Russia since 2007


Oleksiy Honcharuk Resigns as Prime Minister of Ukraine
•    The incumbent Prime Minister of Ukraine, Oleksiy Honcharuk submitted his resignation to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy .The resignation is however still to be confirmed by the President.
•    Oleksiy Honcharuk has been the Prime Minister of Ukraine since 29 August 2019 becoming the youngest-ever head of government at the age of 35.
•    Ukraine capital – Kyiv; Currency – Ukrainian hryvnia

Banking and Economy

UN slashes India's GDP growth forecast to grow at 5.7%

•    On January 16, 2020, According to the ‘World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) 2020’ report  released by the United Nations (UN), it has slashed India’s GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growth forecast for the year 2019-20 by 1.9% to 5.7%. Earlier in 2019,It had projected GDP growth rate of 7.6% for FY 2019-20.
•    It has lowered the India’s growth rate to be 6.6% in the next financial year-FY 2020-21 from 7.4 % earlier. It has also estimate a growth rate of 6.3 % for the fiscal beginning in 2021,while the growth rate was 6.8% in FY 2018-19.

3 major reasons for the reduction in GDP growth
Auto Industry: In 2019, this sector saw the slowdown., whereby the vehicle sales volume witnessed the fastest decline in 19 years. The auto industry records for 7% of the India’s GDP and 49% of the manufacturing GDP.
IIP(Index of Industrial Production):India’s industrial activity continuously at a sluggish manner due to the major steps like corporate tax cuts in September 2019. The IIP (Index of Industrial Production) rose by 1.8% in November 2019, after declining between August –October,2019.
NBFCs: One of the main reasons for the decline in GDP growth is the cash crisis of non-banking finance companies (NBFCs). The crisis came in September 2018 after the Indian infrastructure development and finance company,Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services Limited (IL&FS) defaulted in debt payments.

SUMMITS AND MOU’S


NITI Aayog and UT of Ladakh sign MoU to promote development in Ladakh
•    NITI Aayog and Union Territory of Ladakh sign MoU for Development of Infrastructure Projects in Ladakh.  It was signed between NITI Aayog Senior Adviser Dr Yogesh Suri and Adviser to the Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh Umang Narula. The agreement was executed in the presence of NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant.

•    Under this agreement, NITI Aayog will be supporting the UT’s administration through its key initiative ‘Development Support Services to States for Infrastructure Projects (D3S-i)’. In an important initiative to promote the development of key infrastructure sectors in the newly constituted Union Territory of Ladakh.


Obituary


Former Indian legendary All-Rounder Bapu Nadkarni passed away
Former Test all-rounder Rameshchandra Gangaram 'Bapu' Nadkarni passed away on Friday (January 17) in Mumbai at the age of 86. Nadkarni, best known for bowling a record 21 consecutive maiden overs in a Test match.


Sports

The journey to ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2020 set to begin
•    The ICC Under-19 World Cup Cricket 2020 begins in South Africa. Indian team played under the captaincy of Priyam Garg. 
•    The final of the tournament will be played on Feb 09 at JB Marks Oval, Potchefstroom, South Africa. India is the most successful team in the tournament, having won four titles till date.
•    India is the defending champions in U19 World Cup 2018. Total 16 teams are participating in the tournament, split into four groups of four.

Sania Mirza and Nadiia Kichenok wins WTA doubles title 

•    Sania Mirza (India) and Nadiia Kichenok (Ukraine) have won the women's doubles title of the WTA International trophy at Hobart, Australia. 
•    They beat Shuai Peng and Shuai Zhang from China 6-4,6-4. It's Sania's 42nd WTA doubles title and first since Brisbane International trophy in 2007 with American partner Bethanie Mattek-Sands.

Vinesh Phogat wins gold medal in UWW Rome Ranking Series 2020
•    The 2020 season’s first UWW Ranking Series was held from January 15 to 18 in the Italian Capital, Rome.
•    India’s wrestling champion Vinesh Phogat defeated Ecuador’s Luisa Elizabeth Melendres 4-0 in the final (53 kg) to win her first gold medal of the season at the UWW Rome Ranking Series.


 

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Important Current Affairs 17th January 2020

National 


Bru-Reang Refugee Crisis: Home Minister presides over signing of Historic Agreement to end the Bru-Reang Refugee Crisis

•    Union Home Minister Amit Shah recently signed a historic pact between Bru-Reang representatives, Central Government and Governments of Tripura and Mizoram and to end 23-year old Bru-Reang refugee crisis. 

•    Under the agreement, each displaced family of Bru-Reang Tribals will be given 40x30 sq. ft. of residential plots along with Rs. 1.5 lakhs to build their houses, a fixed deposit of Rs. 4 lakhs, free ration for 2 years and Rs. 5000 cash every month for 2 years.

•    Bru -Reang are one of the 21 scheduled tribes. The Bru can be found Tripura ,Mizoram and Assam

1st edition of Krishi Manthan begins in Gujarat

The 1st edition of Krishi Manthan– the largest Food, Agri-business and Rural Development Summit of Asia begins in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. This summit is organized by Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad.

Defence Minister dedicates 51st K9 Vajra-T guns to nation

•    Defence Minister Rajnath Singh dedicates the 51st K9 Vajra-T guns to the nation. 
•    This gun is self-propelled Howitzer gun made by L&T’s Armoured System Complex at Hazira in Gujarat. 

‘K9 VAJRA-T’ Guns
•    The ‘K9 VAJRA-T’ Tracked, Self-Propelled Howitzer Guns are being manufactured by Larsen & Toubro under the contract awarded to the company by Ministry of Defence through global competitive bidding to deliver 100 such guns.
•    More than 75 percent of K9 Vajra has been manufactured in India.
•    The gun weighs 50 tonnes and can fire 47-kilogram bombs at targets up to a distance of 43 kilometres. It can also turn around at zero radius.

Arunachal Pradesh Becomes First State to ink Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with IUCN
•    Aunachal Pradesh has become the first State in India to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
•    As per the MoU, the state government will collaborate to prepare the IUCN’s Red List Assessment for all orchids in the State.
•    The Department of Environment and Forest is the nodal department for execution of the project.
•    IUCN Headquarters: Gland, Switzerland

International


Microsoft promises to be carbon negative by 2030

•    The US tech giant Microsoft has announced that it would become “carbon negative” by year 2030. The announcement has been made in the form of its increased efforts to combat the climate change.
•     The company announced that it vows to eliminate all the carbon emissions created by the company since its inception in 1975.

•    Microsoft has also announced its investment of $1 billion in a “climate innovation fund” for technology for carbon capture and removal.

•    Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Microsoft: Satya Nadella.
•    Founded: April 4, 1975; Headquarters: Washington, United States(US).


Banking and Economy


World Bank and GOI Inks USD 88 million loan agreement for the implementation of Assam Inland Water Transport Project
•    The Government of India, the Government of Assam and the World Bank has signed a loan agreement worth $88 million for the implementation of the Assam Inland Water Transport Project (AIWTP).
•    The loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) will help to
o    Modernize the passenger ferry infrastructure and its services
o    Strengthen the capacity of the institutions running the inland water transport
o    Make ferry services more sustainable with least disruption to nature, because of technically better designed terminals and energy-efficient vessels (both new and retrofitted).

Science & Technology


ISRO's GSAT-30 satellite successfully launched aboard Ariane rocket

•    Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on January 17, 2020 launched the first satellite of the year 2020 - ‘GSAT-30’ from French Guiana. GSAT-30 is a telecommunication satellite and has a mission life of around 15 years.
•    The GSAT 30 satellite was launched onboard Ariane 5 launch vehicle (VA 251) along with the European Space Company’s Eutelsat Konnect, a telecommunication satellite. It has been configured to give a boost to communication services such as television uplink, DTH,  digital satellite news and VSAT. It weighs approximately 3357 kg.
•    The satellite derives its heritage from ISRO's previous INSAT/GSAT satellite series. It will replace INSAT-4A spacecraft services with enhanced coverage.

Ranking


WEF Global Risks Report 2020: Climate action failure, biodiversity loss, extreme weather top global risks
•    WEF Global Risks Report 2020 was released by the World Economic Forum on January 15, 2020. The report is based on the Global Risks Perception Survey of the WEF that is conducted annually. 
•    The report categorized all Global Risks into five categories - Economic Risks, Environmental Risks, Geopolitical Risks, Societal Risks and Technological Risks.
•    The Global Risks Report 2020 comes at a time when the global economy is facing a synchronized slowdown, cyber-attacks are on a rise and climate change is becoming an increasingly concerning phenomenon with the past five years being the warmest on record.

Most Powerful Passports of 2020: India ranks 84th
•    The Henley Passport Index 2020 was released recently, revealing the most powerful passports of the year 2020. Japan’s passport was ranked as the Most Powerful Passport of 2020. 
•    Indian passport was ranked at 84th position in the index that listed passports of 199 countries and 227 tourist places. The index is prepared on the basis of data of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
•    According to the Henley Passport Index, Japan has the most powerful passport in the world.
Japan’s passport holders can visit 191 countries without any visa.
•    Top 10 countries in the index are – Singapore, Germany, South Korea, Italy, Finland, Spain, Luxembourg, and Denmark.
•    Headquarters of Henley & Partners: London, United Kingdom; Founded: 1997.
•    Chairman of Henley & Partners: Christian Kalin.
•    Chief Executive Officer(CEO): Juerg Steffen.

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Important Current Affairs 16th January 2020

National 


Petroleum Minister to launch fuel conservation campaign ‘Saksham’


Secretary, Petroleum and Natural Gas Dr. M M Kutty inaugurated fuel conservation mega campaign 'Saksham' in New Delhi on 16 January 2020. 
The campaign was organized by the Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA). The campaign will be held for a month.
Saksham:
♦ GoI has set to double to 11% by 2040.
♦ The campaign is aimed to address the target and India's share of primary energy demand not only petroleum conservation but the creation of a sustainable development model.
♦ It highlights the major advantages of fuel conservation, and help in a progressive reduction of carbon footprint

No documents or biometric required for National Population Register (NPR): Home Ministry


•    The Government has informed that no documents will be asked and no biometric will be taken for National Population Register (NPR) exercise to be carried out between April and September 2020.
•    The NPR is a register of usual residents of the country.
•    The NPR exercise will be carried out in all states and UTs, except Assam, along with the house listing phase of the census 2021 exercise.
•    The Union Cabinet has approved Rs. 3,941.35 crore for the NPR exercise.
•    Assam has been excluded because the National Register of Citizens (NRC) exercise has already been conducted in the state.

Super Senior Citizens and PwDs now vote through Postal Ballot


     Super Senior Citizens (over 80 years of age) and PwDs now vote through Postal Ballot in Delhi Assembly Election.
     A postal ballot is a facility for those absentee voters, including those who are unable to vote due to some immobility can vote.
     For the first time, Delhi Metro, Northern Railway Employees and media persons covering polling can also use postal ballot facility to cast their votes
     Till now, voting through the postal ballot was available to armed forces and those assigned in poll duties. 

5th Science Film Festival of India (SCI-FFI) 2020 Begins in Goa


•    The 5th edition of Science Film Festival of India (SCI-FFI 2020) was started in Goa’s capital city Panaji. 
•    The aims of the festival are instilling the knowledge of science among the youth with the help of exhibitions, masterclasses, workshops, and other activities. 
•    Films that have been selected to be screened at the event are ‘Mission Mangal’, ‘Antariksham 9000 KMPH’, ‘Everest’, ‘Aamorie’, ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’, ‘Geostorm’ and, ‘Virus’ among others.
•    Chief Minister of Goa: Pramod Sawant; Governor of Goa: Satya Pal Malik.


International


Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev along with entire Cabinet Submits Resignation as Prez Putin proposes constitutional changes


•    Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has resigned. They submit their resignation to President Vladimir Putin. Medvedev would take on a new job as deputy head of Russia’s Security Council. 
•    The changes would include giving parliament the power to choose the prime minister and senior cabinet members, instead of the president as in the current system.

Banking and Economy


SBI cuts Fixed Deposit rates by 15 bps


♦ For deposits below Rs.2 crore, SBI will now offer 6.10% as compared to 6.25% for all maturities of 1 year to 10 years. 
♦ Senior citizens will continue to get 50 bps higher than the card rate.
♦ Whereas, the deposits maturing in 7 days to 1 year, the bank has kept the rates unchanged. 
♦ The new rates came into effect from 10 January 2020.
♦ SBI's move is to cut the fixed deposit rates at a time when consumer price index-based inflation shot up to 5 years high of 7.35%.

The FD rates of SBI are:
♦ For 7 days to 45 days 4.50%
♦ For 46 days to 179 days 5.50%
♦ For 180 days to 210 days 5.80%
♦ For 211 days to less than 1 year 5.80%
♦ For 1 year to less than 2 years 6.10%
♦ For 2 years to less than 3 years 6.10%
♦ For 3 years to less than 5 years 6.10%
♦ For 5 years and up to 10 years 6.10%

7th edition of Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Conference 2020


•    The 7th Conference of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) India Region was inaugurated by Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla in the Vidhan Bhawan, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh on 16 January 2020.
•    During the two-day event, Madhya Pradesh Governor Lalji Tandon will address the inaugural session, while Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel will address the valedictory session on 17 January 2020.
•    The main theme of the conference is ‘ROLE OF LEGISLATORS’ .


Appointment


Harish Salve Appointed As Queen's Counsel, Official Appointment On March 16


Top legal eagle Harish Salve was appointed into Queen Elizabeth II's counsel of Senior Advocate. He has been appointed as Queen's Counsel (QC) for the courts of England and Wales. Salve's name appeared on the list of silk appointments released by the United Kingdom's Ministry of Justice Department on January 13.
Salve is best known for representing India in many important matters on international waters. Having being called to the Blackstone Chambers in 2013, Salve went on to represent India at the International Court of Justice for the Kulbhushan Jadhav extradition case. 

He was also applauded by many people when he stated that for representing India in the Kulbhushan Jadhav extradition case, he will charge the Indian Government an amount of Re. 1 as his legal fees for the proceedings.
     Capital of United Kingdom: London; Currency: Pound sterling.
     Prime Minister of United Kingdom: Boris Johnson.


Robert Abela elected as Malta’s new PM
     Labour Party candidate Robert Abela elected as 14th prime minister of Malta with 57.9% of the vote. He defeated his closest rival Chris Fearne.
     He will replace Joseph Muscat, who resigned over the murder of a journalist, Daphne Caruana Galizia.
     Capital of Malta: Valletta; Currency: Euro; President: George Vella.

WHO released 2020 Global Health Challenges report
The World Health Organization (WHO) released the list of Global Health Challenges of the forthcoming year on 13 January 2020.

Report Highlights:
♦ The list of Global Health Challenges highlighted 13 potential threats.
♦ The top among the listed threats was Anti-Microbial Resistance (AMR) and climate crisis. 
♦ As per the report, around 7 million people are affected because of climate change. 
♦ The report said that climate change has increased malnutrition and is fueling the spread of infectious diseases such as malaria. 
♦ Following these 2, the other threats mentioned in the list include the influenza epidemic and the spread of infectious diseases such as HIV, malaria, and tuberculosis. 
♦ The report stated that most of the death is due to stroke, chronic respiratory disease, heart attack, and lung cancer. These diseases are increased by raising levels of air pollution. 
♦ For the first time, Lack of Access has entered the list. 

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Important Current Affairs 15th January 2020



NATIONAL NEWS


Arunachal Pradesh : Parshuram Kund Mela Begins
•    The famous Parshuram Kund Mela began in Arunachal Pradesh on 14 January 2020.
•    Parshuram Kund is a Hindu pilgrimage centre situated on the Brahmaputra plateau in the lower reaches of the Lohit River in Lohit district of Arunachal Pradesh.
•    Devotees from across the country visit the sacred place to take a holy dip in the Kund on the occasion of Makar Sankranti every year.

PwDs and super Senior Citizens can now vote too through Postal Ballot 
•    Person with disabilities(PwDs) and people over 80 years of age can now cast their vote in Delhi Assembly Election through postal ballot. 
•    For the first time, Delhi Metro, Northern Railway Employees and media persons covering polling can also use postal ballot facility to cast their votes. 
•    Till now, voting through postal ballot was available to armed forces and those assigned in poll duties. Briefing media in New Delhi today, Chief Electoral Officer Ranbir Singh said, employee of essential service can fill the form 12(D) and submit before 19th of this month to avail the postal ballot facility. He said, nodal officers have been deployed for this process for essential service employees. 
•    Mr Singh said, under postal ballot facility, these absentee voters, including those who are unable to vote due to some immobility can vote. 
•    He said, ramp, sign language, Braille and pick and drop facilities will be available for disabled persons at polling stations.
•    Mr Singh said, commission is trying, with its objective of inclusive and accessive election, to make each and everyone to participate in the election process. 

Government relaxes FASTag norms for 65 toll plazas
•    The government today said,  to facilitate smooth flow of traffic FASTag norms for 65 toll plazas with high cash transactions have been relaxed to allow them to convert up to 25 per cent of FASTag lane of Fee Plaza into hybrid lanes for 30 days.
•    Transport ministry statement said, it has been done on the request of National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) so that the citizens are not put to any inconvenience.
•    The government has rolled out FASTag-based electronic toll collection mechanism from December 15 last across all toll plazas of the NHAI and has mandated the use of FASTags across at least 75 per cent lanes of toll plazas and has restricted use of cash mode of payment to a maximum of 25 per cent lanes of toll plazas.
•    These 65 plazas are located Pan-India including Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Punjab, Chandigarh and Andhra Pradesh. FASTags-based toll collection system has been rolled out across  527 national highways.

BANKING AND ECONOMICS


 Amazon to invest $1 billion to digitise small and medium businesses in India
•    Amazon.com Inc chief Jeff Bezos has announced USD 1 billion (over Rs 7,000 crore) investment in India over the next five years, to bring small and medium businesses online.
•    The initiative will help to digitise micro and small businesses across India, and help them reach more customers than ever before.
•    The company is also committed to exporting USD 10 billion worth of India-made goods by 2025.

AWARDS AND RECOGNITION


 National Highways Excellence Awards 2019 
•    The Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways and MSMEs Shri Nitin Gadkari presented the ‘National Highways Excellence Awards 2019’ to 12 outstanding performers in NH sector on 14 January 2020 in New Delhi.
•    National Highway Excellence Awards were instituted in the year 2018 to recognize the well-performing companies in the field of construction, operations, maintenance, toll collection and road safety on National Highways.
•    The award is given in seven categories namely:
1.    Excellence in Project Management,
2.    Excellence in Operation and Maintenance
3.    Excellence in Toll Management,
4.    Excellence in Highway Safety
5.    Innovation
6.    Outstanding Work in Challenging Conditions
7.    Green Highway


APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS


Dmitry Medvedev, Russian Prime Minister submits resignation

•    Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has resigned. The Tass news agency said that Medvedev submitted his resignation to President Vladimir Putin today. 
•    It said, President Putin thanked Mr. Medvedev for his contribution. The agency also reports that Mr. Putin will name Mr. Medvedev as deputy of the presidential Security Council.
•    Russian President asked Medvedev's Cabinet to keep working until the new Cabinet is formed.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY


145th Foundation Day of India Meteorological Department (IMD) 

•    The India Meteorological Department (IMD) is celebrating its 145th Foundation Day on 15 January. It was established in 1875. The day will be celebrated by Ministry of Earth Science under which IMD (Indian Meteorological Department) functions.
•    History of India Meteorological Department : Indian Meteorological Department was established in 1875 with its headquarters at Calcutta. But Later it was shifted to Shimla in 1905, to Pune in 1928 and then to Delhi in 1944.
•    What is the India Meteorological Department? : The India Meteorological Department (IMD) is work under the Ministry of Earth Sciences of the Government of India. It is the principal agency responsible for meteorological observations, weather forecasting and seismology. IMD is headquartered in Delhi and operates hundreds of observation stations across India and Antarctica. Its Regional offices are in Mumbai, Kolkata, Nagpur and Pune.
•    Recent Achievements of India Meteorological Department : World Meteorological Organization recognized 5 observatories of India Meteorological Department as a long-term observing station for more than 100 years. These 5 Observatories are:
(1) Chennai (Nungambakkam)
(2) Mumbai (Colaba)
(3) Panjim
(4) Pune
(5) Thiruvananthapuram
•    New Aeronautical Meteorological Stations commissioned under RCS-UDAN Scheme.
•    Modelling & Forecasting System of India Meteorological Department
•    IMD in collaboration with NCMRWF & IITM implemented Thunderstorm and Lightning Modelling and Warning System.
•    Global Forecast System (GFS) model upgraded and run 4 times a day to generate 10 days forecast.

SUMMITS AND MOU’S


India and Bangladesh Signs MoU for Co-production of biopic on BangaBandhu
•    India and Bangladesh signed some of the key agreements in the field of Information and Broadcasting on 14 January 2020 during the Information and Broadcasting Minister’s meet 2020 held in New Delhi.
•    Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Shri Prakash Javadekar and his Bangladeshi counterpart Muhammad H Mahmud signed the agreement.
•    Agreements include:
•    MoU for the co-production of a film on “BangaBandhu” Sheikh Mujibur Rahman (first President of Bangladesh).
o    The film will be directed by Indian director/producer Shri Shyam Benegal.
o    It is proposed to be released in March 2021, as part of centenary celebrations of BangaBandhu.
•    An airtime content exchange programme was signed between Prasar Bharati and Bangladesh Radio Betar.
•    India committed to extend all possible cooperation to Bangladesh in setting up the BongoBandhu film city.
•    Bangladesh will celebrate the ‘Mujib Year’ from March 17, 2020 to March 17, 2021 to mark the centenary year of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

DAYS


January 2020 Important Days
Date     Name of important Days
1 January    Global Family Day
8 January    African National Congress Foundation Day
9 January    NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
11 January    Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
12 January    National Youth Day
15 January
15 January    Indian Army Day
Makar Sankranti
23 January    Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
24 January    National Girl Child Day
25 January    National Voters Day
25 January    National Tourism Day
26 January    Republic Day
26 January    International Customs Day
28 January    Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
30 January    Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January    World Leprosy Eradication Day
1 January – Global Family Day
It is celebrated as a day of peace and sharing. Its aim is to unite and spread message of peace by considering and promoting an idea that Earth is a one Global Family so as to make world a better place to live for everyone.

8 January - African National Congress Foundation Day
South African Native National Congress (SANNC) was founded in 8 January 1912 by John Langalibalele Dube in Bloemfontein. Behind this the primary motive was to give voting rights to black and mixed race Africans or to unite African people and spearhead the struggle for fundamental political, social and economic change.
9 January – NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
NRI or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas observed every year on 9 January to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community towards the development of India. This day also commemorates the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to Mumbai on 9 January, 1915.


10 January : World Hindi Day
The World Hindi Day is celebrated every year on 10 January since 2006 to create awareness for the promotion of Hindi in the world, to introduce Hindi as an international language among other things.Former Prime Minister of India Shri Manmohan Singh declared World Hindi Day to be observed on 10 January in the year 2006.Since then, the day is observed by Ministry of External Affairs and Indian Embassies abroad.
11 January – Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
He was the second Prime Minsiter of Independent India. He popularised the slogan 'Jai Jawan Jai Kisan' He actively participated in the India's freedom struggle. Due to cardiac arrest he died on 11 January, 1966.
12 January – National Youth Day
The birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda also called Swami Vivekananda Jayanti is celebrated every year on 12 January. He was born on 12 January, 1863. The government had decided to observe it as National Youth Day because the philosophy of Swamiji and the ideals for which he lived and worked could be a great source of inspiration for the Indian Youth. He had given speech at the Parliament of the World's religions in Chicago and glorified India's name.

15 January – Indian Army Day
Every year 15 January is observed as Indian Army Day because on this day in 1949 field Marshal Kodandera M Cariappa took over as the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from General Sir Francis Butcher, the last British Commander-in-Chief.

15 January -- Makara Sankranti
Makara Sankranti or Maghi, is a festival day in the Hindu calendar, dedicated to the deity Surya. It is observed each year in January. It marks the first day of the sun's transit into Makara, marking the end of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days.
Observances: Kite flying.
Date: Wednesday, 15 January, 2020
Celebrations: Kite flying, bonfires, fairs, surya puja in river, feast, arts, dance, socialization
Featured in religions: Hinduism
Significance: Harvest festival
Also called: Magha, Môkôr Sôngkrānti, Mela, Maghi, Bhogi
23 January - Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose was born on 23 January, 1897 in Cuttack, Orissa. He was one of the most prominent Indian freedom fighter. His army was known as Indian National Army (INA) or Azad Hind Fauj. He also led an Indian national force from abroad against the Western powers during World War II.

24 January- National Girl Child Day
On 24 January every year National Girl Child Day is celebrated to highlight the inequalities faced by a majority of the girls in India, importance of education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care and safety of girl children etc.
25 January- National Voters Day
Every year on 25 January National Voter's Day or Rashtriya Matdata Diwas is celebrated to encourage young voters to take part in the political process. In 2011 first time this day was celebrated to mark Election Commission's Foundation Day.
25 January- National Tourism Day
Every year on 25 January National Tourism Day is celebrated in India to raise the awareness and educate people about the importance of tourism and the role it plays in the Indian economy.

26 January- Republic Day
On 26 November, 1949 Indian Constituent Assembly adopted the Constitution the supreme law of the land and replaced the Government of India Act 1935. It came into effect on 26 January 1950 with a democratic government system. This day marks with the largest parade took place at Rajpath, Delhi every year.

26 January – International Customs Day
International Customs Day (ICD) is celebrated every year on 26 January by Custom Organisation to recognise the role of custom officials and agencies in maintaining border security. It also focuses on the working conditions and challenges that custom officers face in their jobs.
28 January- Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
Lala Lajpat Rai was born on 28 January, 1865 in Punjab. He was a prominent nationalist leader who played an important role in India’s struggle for freedom. He also earned the title of 'Punjab Kesari' or 'the Lion of the Punjab'. He initiated the foundation of Punjab National Bank. He died on 17 November, 1928, due to serious injuries. The University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences in Hisar, Haryana is named after Lala Lajpat Rai.

30 January – Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January is celebrated as Martyr's Day or Shaeed Diwas every year in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi and sacrifice of three revolutionaries of India. As, on 30 January, 1948, the 'Father of Nation' was assassinated. And on 23rd March 3 heroes namely Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru and Sukhdev Thapar of the nation were hanged to death by British.

30 January – World Leprosy Eradication Day
World Leprosy Day is observed on 30 January every year to focus on the target of zero cases of leprosy-related disabilities in children. As, we know that disabilities do not occur overnight but happen after a prolonged period of undiagnosed disease.

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Important Current Affairs 14th January 2020

INTERNATIONAL NEWS 


The United States Treasury Department removes China from its Currency Manipulator list, which was imposed in August 2019.

NATIONAL NEWS

Japanese Coast Guard ship arrives in Chennai for joint exercise
•    On January 13, 2019 the Japan Coast Guard Ship ‘Ichigo PLH08’ has arrived Chennai on a five-day goodwill visit and it will participate in the 19th edition of Annual Joint Exercise ‘Sahyog-Kaijin’ which will be begin on January 16, 2020 with the Indian Coast Guard off in Chennai.
•    Admiral Takahiro Okushima, Commandant, Japan Coast Guard and Director General (DG) Krishnaswamy Natarajan, DG of Indian Coast Guard will witness the 19th edition of ‘Sahyog-Kaijin’ exercise.
•    It is aimed at further strengthening bilateral ties and mutual understanding between the two Coast Guards and to enhance interoperability in communication and Search and Rescue procedures and sharing of best practices.
•    First edition of ‘Sahyog- Kaijin’ exercise between two coast guards took place in 2000.
•    Four Indian Coast Guard Ships, their aircraft and a vessel from National Institute of Ocean Technology will be participating along with Japan Coast Guard Ship.
•    Activities like Official calls, reciprocal visit Onboard ships, sporting, cultural interactions and professional interactions between personnel of both the Coast Guards will take part in the exercise.

Centre identifies 26 islands of Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshawadeep for holistic development by promoting tourism
•    On January 13, 2020 the Union Minister of Home Affairs (MoHA) Shri Amit Shah chaired the 6th meeting of Island Development Agency (IDA) in New Delhi.
•    During the meeting progress made towards “Holistic development of islands” were reviewed. It is also for the first time in India, under the IDA’s guidance an initiative of sustainable development has been undertaken with scientific assessments.
•    A total of 26 islands i.e, 16 from Andaman and Nicobar Islands and 10 from Lakshadweep islands have been identified for promoting tourism.
•    Digital connectivity by June 2020: In order to strengthen the infrastructure improving air, sea and digital connectivity are also being implemented. Port Blair (Andaman & Nicobar) and 7 islands of Andaman & Nicobar will be digitally connected through submarine optical fibre cable by June, 2020.
•    Communication services:  Information Technology (IT) based and other Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the islands would be set up through Lakshadweep and Andaman & Nicobar Islands Industrial Development Scheme (LANIDS), 2018 notified on 1st January, 2019.
•    Airport development in Great Nicobar Island of Andaman & Nicobar and Minicoy Island of Lakshadweep have been proposed.

1st time India to host 19TH SCO heads meeting and Statue of Unity finds place in '8 Wonders of SCO'
•    On January 13, 2020 the secretary general of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Vladimir Norov who is on a 4-day visit to India to attend the Raisina dialogue 2020 in new Delhi from January16-16,2020, has announced that India has been selected to host the SCO’s annual meeting of council of heads of government for the 1st time.
•    Raisina dialogue host: The dialogue which addresses the issues faced by global community is hosted by Observer Research Foundation(ORF) in collaboration with Ministry of External Affairs(MEA).
•    The Statue of Unity in Gujarat,India has been included in the SCO’s “8 wonders of SCO” list.
•    India’s membership with SCO: India became a member of the SCO at the SCO summit held in Astana (now renamed as Nur-sultan), Kazakhstan in the year 2017 along with Pakistan. Before becoming a member of SCO, India was granted with the observer status from 2005.
•    SCO members: The members of the SCO include China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, India, Pakistan. Thus there totally 8 member nations of SCO

The Pulses Conclave 2020 to be held at Lonavala, Maharashtra
•    The 5th edition of the biennial global pulses conference, ‘The Pulses Conclave 2020’ (TPC 2020), will be held from February 12 to 14, 2020 at Lonavala, Pune, Maharashtra.
•    The conclave is being organised by India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA).
•    IPGA is the apex body of India’s pulses and grains industry and trade based in Mumbai.
•    The aim of the conclave is to discuss increasing domestic production and consumption and improving processing efficiencies, increasing consumption, exports, value addition, protein extraction, post-harvest crop management, etc.

11-17 January 2020 : National Road Safety Week  
•    In 2020, India is observing the 31st National Road Safety Week from 11 to 17 January 2020.
•    The theme for National Road Safety Week 2020 is : ‘Sadak Suraksha – Jeevan Raksha’.
•    The National Road Safety Week is observed throughout the country every year to highlight and emphasize the need for safe roads and provide an opportunity for all stakeholders to contribute to the cause by taking up activities to promote the concept.
•    It is organised every year in January by the National Safety Council of India.

Neonatal and under-five mortality rate in India
•    On January 12, 2020, the United Nations(UN) inter agency group for child mortality has produced a report titled “Levels and Trends in Child Mortality”. 
•    As per this report India is among 5 countries where in 2018, the mortality of girls under the age of 5 exceeds that of the boys. 
•    Half of all under-5 deaths in 2018 occurred in the following five countries: India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo(DRC) and Ethiopia.
•    Gender gaps: Considering overall states and Union Territories(UTs), Jharkhand, Bihar and Uttarakhand showed largest gender gaps in under-5 age mortality.
•    India and Nigeria alone accounted for about 1/3rd of under 5 age deaths.

Sr.No Category State 
1 State with largest gender gap Jharkhand.
2 State with highest newborn deaths Uttar Pradesh.
3 State with highest under 5 mortality rate Madhya Pradesh.
4 State with least under 5 mortality rate Kerala.

11-member panel to discuss the royalty rate issues on minerals
•    On January 13, 2020 the centre has decided to set up an 11-member panel that will look into the issues related to revision of royalty rates for minerals (other than coal, lignite, sand for stowing and minor minerals). 
•    The panel will be headed by additional secretary of the mines ministry Dr. K. Rajeswara Rao.
•    Mines secretaries from states of Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha will be the members of the panel.
•    Report submission: The members will have to submit the report within 1 month to the Mines ministry after examining the issues raised by stakeholders.
•    Previously in February 2018, the mines ministry had set up a study group to revise royalty rates and dent rent for minerals. The group submitted its report in July 2019.
•    About Ministry of Mines:
Headquarters- New Delhi.
Union minister- Prahlad Joshi. (Constituency- Dharwad, Karnataka).

Integrated Road Accident Database (IRAD) developed by IIT-Madras, Launched
•    On January 13, 2020, Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways and MSMEs(Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) Shri Nitin Gadkari & Defence Minister Shri Rajnath Singh have jointly launched an IT (Information Technology) tool “Integrated Road Accident Database (IRAD)” developed by the Indian Institute of Technology–Madras (IIT-M) that will help in proper monitoring and accurate analysis of road accidents.
•    It was launched during ‘Road Safety Stakeholders’ Meet held in New Delhi.
•    Developed with the help of  Rs.258 crore financial assistance given by the World Bank,the database will be implemented by the National Informatics Centre (NIC).
•    Initially this system is being implemented in 6 states (Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh (MP), Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu (TN) and Uttar Pradesh (UP) with highest fatalities of road crashes

BANKING AND ECONOMICS

Rs 14000 crore Approved by World Bank & ADB to enhance road safety in India
•    The World Bank and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have approved Rs 7 thousand crore each to reduce the number of ‘blind spots’ from Indian roads and addressed various aspects of road safety in India.
•    This was announced by the Union Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Nitin Gadkari on 13 January 2020 at the Road Safety Stakeholders’ Meet in New Delhi, held to mark the 31st National Road Safety Week 2020.
•    As a part of the event, the Defence Minister awarded Tamil Nadu as the best performing state in reducing road accidents.
 

7.35% rise in  Retail inflation in December 2019, highest in last 5 years : NSO
•    On January 13, 2020, According to the Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) / Retail inflation figures, released by the National Statistical Office (NSO) under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI), Retail inflation rose to a 5-year high of 7.35% in December 2019. 
•    Earlier, in July 2014, the retail inflation had reached 7.39 %.
•    Retail inflation was more affected in December due to high food prices.
•    Retail inflation based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) stood at only 2.11 % in December 2018 & 5.54 % in November 2019.
•    The retail inflation has crossed the upper limit set by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). The central government has asked the Reserve Bank to keep inflation in the range of 2-6%

AWARDS, RECORDS AND RECOGNITION

Himachal holds Guiness World Record by preparing largest quantity of Khichdi on Makar Sankranti
•    Himachal Pradesh has made the Guiness Book of World Records for preparing the largest-ever quantity of ‘bean and rice’ dish (khichdi) on 14 January 2020, on the occasion of Makar Sankranti, at Tattapani in Mandi district of the state.
•    Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur accepted the certificate on behalf of the state’s Tourism and Civil Aviation department.
•    A team of 25 chefs from Holiday Home hotel in Shimla, cooked 1995 kg of the dish in a vessel weighing 270 kg, with the dimensions of four feet depth and seven feet diameter, that was especially acquired from Jagadhari in Haryana.
•    The chefs’ team took five hours, 4 AM to 9 AM, to prepare the stew.
•    The khichdi container was too heavy to be carried that a crane was used to tilt out the khichdi from the enormous container for serving khichdi to devotees at Tattapani.
•    Earlier, the record for making the largest amount of khichdi (918.8 kg) was held by celebrity chef Sanjeev Kapoor when he represented the Indian ministry of food processing industries at an event in New Delhi on November 4, 2017.

Republic Day parade of 2020 : Captain Tania Shergill to become first woman parade adjutant
•    On 13th January 2020, It was announced Captain Tania Shergill, an officer with Army’s Corps of Signals, will be the first woman parade adjutant for the Republic Day (26th January) parade of 2020. 
•    A parade adjutant is responsible for the parade.
•    She is an electronics and communications graduate, her father, grandfather and great-grandfather have also served in the Army. She was commissioned in March 2017 from the Officer Training Academy, Chennai.
•    In the 2019 Republic Day parade, Captain Bhavna Kasturi was the first women officer who led an all-men contingent.
•    The Republic Day parade will witness Infantry Combat Vehicle BMP-2K of the 18 Mechanised Infantry, Dhanush Gun System and the Army Air Defence on the Rajpath.
•    Contingents of the Corps of Signals, Sikh Light Infantry, Kumaon Regiment, the Grenadiers, the Parachute Regiment will also take part in the parade.
 

British Indian yoga champion Ishwar Sharma wins Global Child Prodigy Award

Actor Aamir Khan in New Delhi conferred 2020 Swachhata Darpan plastic management awards
•    On january 12, 2020 the Drinking Water and Sanitation (DDWS) under Ministry of Jal Shakti, organised the ODF (Open Defecation Free) sustainability workshop in New Delhi.  The workshop had a special session by Bollywood actor Aamir Khan (founder of Paani foundation) who distributed awards to the best performing districts on key swachhata parameters.
•    Swachhata Darpan Awards:
Actor Aamir Khan presented the Swachhata Darpan Awards for best performing districts which includes East Godavari (Andhra Pradesh), West Kameng (Arunachal Pradesh), Bemtara (Chhattisgarh), Diu (Daman and Diu), Panipat (Haryana), Vadodara (Gujarat), Kolhapur (Maharashtra), Moga (Punjab), East Sikkim (Sikkim) and Pedappali (Telangana).
•    Award for plastic waste management:
4 districts i.e, Dibrugarh (Assam), Sirmaur (Himachal Pradesh), Indore (Madhya Pradesh) and Puri (Odisha) were awarded for innovations and initiatives in plastic waste management.

SPORTS

Football player Mbappé named as the most valuable player at €265 million: CIES Football Observatory

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS

Appointment : Michael Debabrata Patra as Deputy Governor of RBI
•    Michael Debabrata Patra has been appointed as the 4th Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for a period of three-year.
•    Patra replaces Viral Acharya, who quit the post in July 2019.
•    RBI can have a maximum of four Deputy Governors.
•    Currently N S Vishwanathan, B P Kanungo and Mahesh Kumar Jain are the other three Deputy Governors working at the central bank.

Lt General Girish Kumar reappointed as the Surveyor General of India for one year

A P Maheshwari appointed as the new DG of CRPF

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

ISRO : GSAT-30 Satellite ready to Launch from French Guiana on 17 January
•    The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is set to launch a communication satellite named GSAT-30 on 17 January 2020 onboard the Ariane-5 launch vehicle (VA 251) from the Ariane Launch Complex at Kourou in French Guiana.
•    The GSAT-30 is a 3,357 kg satellite with a mission life of 15 years.
•    It will serve as a replacement to INSAT-4A spacecraft services to provide communication services from geostationary orbit in C and Ku bands with enhanced coverage.
•    The satellite would be extensively used for supporting VSAT network, television uplinking and teleport services, digital satellite news gathering (DSNG), DTH television services, cellular backhaul connectivity, and many such applications

Indian scientists detect India’s 1st case of infection in Maharashtra : H9N2 virus
•    In December 2019, Scientists of the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune, Maharashtra have detected the 1st case of H9N2 virus ,a rare subtype of influenza virus A, in a 17-month-old boy in Maharashtra.
•    The discovery has been published in the journal ‘Emerging Infectious Diseases’ of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
•    It is a rare variant of the virus, which causes human influenza as well as bird flu. These viruses, found exclusively in wild birds, could potentially play a major role in the worldwide emergence of influenza.
•    According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the avian influenza virus is spreading rapidly in poultry firms, exposure to infected poultry or contaminated environments poses a risk to human groups as well.
•    H9N2 virus infections in humans are rare, although cases of the infection do not come to light due to unclear symptoms. In humans, the first case of H9N2 virus infection occurred in Hong Kong in 1998.

Special NATO class diesel for Indian Navy launched by IOC 
•    On January 13,2020 Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has developed a special class diesel (HFHSD- IN 512) High Flash High Speed Diesel conforming to NATO grade for use in ships and vessels of Indian Army and results reduced carbon footprint.

Wolf Cukier, A 17-year-old intern at NASA, discovers new planet ‘TOI 1338b’ 1300 light years away.

OBITUARY

Former vice-president of the International Chess Federation (FIDE) P T Ummer Koya (1996 to 2006) passes away at 69. 

National Award Winner Manmohan Mohapatra passed away at 69

SUMMITS AND MOU’S

Indian Railways and RailTel signs MoU for Phase 2 execution of e-office
•    On January 13, 2020 Indian Railways signs Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with  RailTel, a miniratna Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) under the Ministry of Railways for Phase 2 project of e-office execution. 
•    Under this project, RailTel will register 39,000 users over 34 divisions on National Informatics Centre (NIC) e-office platform by June 30, 2020.
•    MoU was signed by Executive Director (ED/TD), Railway Board, Shri Umesh Balonda, and General Manager (GM)/Information Technology (IT) project/RailTel, Smt. Haritima Jaipuriar.
•    Under the Phase 1 execution of e-office, RailTel trained more than 50,000 users in 58 divisions of Indian Railways.
•    e-office is a paperless culture which helps to reduce the operational cost and carbon footprints. 
•    Thus 58 units of Indian Railways became paperless under Phase 1 execution of e-office.
•    NIC e-office  is a cloud enabled software based on Central Secretariat Manual of e-Office Procedure (CSMeOP). It contains four modules namely File Management System (eFile), Knowledge Management System (KMS), Collaboration & Messaging Services (CAMS) and Personnel Information Management System (PIMS).
•    Participants: Chairman, Railway Board, Shri Vinod Kumar Yadav, Member S&T, Railway Board, Shri Pradeep Kumar, CMD, RailTel, Shri Puneet Chawla and other senior officials of Railways and RailTel.
•    About Indian Railways:
Founded- April 16, 1853
Headquarters- New Delhi
Minister of Railway- Piyush Goyal
Chairman of Railway Board- Vinod Kumar Yadav

5th Raisina Dialogue Begins in New Delhi
•    The 5th edition of the prestigious Raisina Dialogue kicked-off in New Delhi on 14 January 2020 and will continue till 16 January 2020.
•    The Dialogue has been jointly organized by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and the Observer Research Foundation.
•    Raisina Dialogue is India’s flagship global Conference on geopolitics and geo-economics, and also one of the largest gathering of its kind.
•    The inaugural session on 14 January will be attended by the Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi along with Seven former Heads of State/Government, to share their views on important challenges facing the world
•    The Raisina Dialogue 2020 will bring together 700 international participants from over a 100 countries.
•    The conference will see deliberations over 80 sessions around 5 thematic pillars including
o    Nationalist impulses challenging global institutions and collective action,
o    Debate on the global trading architecture,
o    Role of technologies in determining political, economic and military power,
o    Global development agenda and
o    State-individual relationship in the age of digital communities and cyberspace.

SBI Signs MoU with South Central Zone of Indian Railways for Doorstep Banking
•    The South Central Zone (SCR) of Indian Railways and State Bank of India (SBI) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding for ‘Doorstep Banking’ to enable direct pickup of cash earnings from all 585 Railway stations on SCR Zone.
•    The direct pick up of cash from all the railway stations on SCR by SBI will save the tedious and complex activity of movement of cash earnings through ‘cash safes’ by trains.
•    The door step banking will increase the pace of financial transactions and digitization of remittance of cash earnings of the Railways into accounts.

DAYS

January 2020 Important Days

Date Name of important Days
1 January Global Family Day
8 January African National Congress Foundation Day
9 January NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
11 January Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
12 January National Youth Day

15 January

15 January

Indian Army Day

Makar Sankranti

23 January Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
24 January National Girl Child Day
25 January National Voters Day
25 January National Tourism Day
26 January Republic Day
26 January International Customs Day
28 January Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
30 January Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January World Leprosy Eradication Day

1 January – Global Family Day
It is celebrated as a day of peace and sharing. Its aim is to unite and spread message of peace by considering and promoting an idea that Earth is a one Global Family so as to make world a better place to live for everyone.
8 January - African National Congress Foundation Day
South African Native National Congress (SANNC) was founded in 8 January 1912 by John Langalibalele Dube in Bloemfontein. Behind this the primary motive was to give voting rights to black and mixed race Africans or to unite African people and spearhead the struggle for fundamental political, social and economic change.
9 January – NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
NRI or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas observed every year on 9 January to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community towards the development of India. This day also commemorates the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to Mumbai on 9 January, 1915.
10 January : World Hindi Day
The World Hindi Day is celebrated every year on 10 January since 2006 to create awareness for the promotion of Hindi in the world, to introduce Hindi as an international language among other things.Former Prime Minister of India Shri Manmohan Singh declared World Hindi Day to be observed on 10 January in the year 2006.Since then, the day is observed by Ministry of External Affairs and Indian Embassies abroad.
11 January – Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
He was the second Prime Minsiter of Independent India. He popularised the slogan 'Jai Jawan Jai Kisan' He actively participated in the India's freedom struggle. Due to cardiac arrest he died on 11 January, 1966.
12 January – National Youth Day
The birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda also called Swami Vivekananda Jayanti is celebrated every year on 12 January. He was born on 12 January, 1863. The government had decided to observe it as National Youth Day because the philosophy of Swamiji and the ideals for which he lived and worked could be a great source of inspiration for the Indian Youth. He had given speech at the Parliament of the World's religions in Chicago and glorified India's name.
14 January --Armed Forces Veterans Day
In India, the Armed Forces Veterans Day is observed each year on 14 January since 2017 to acknowledge and honour the selfless devotion and sacrifice of our veterans in the service of the nation. The day is observed as a mark of respect and recognition of the services rendered by Filed Marshal KM Cariappa OBE, the first Indian Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Armed Forces who retired on 14 January 1953. 2020 marks the 4th Armed Forces Veterans Day with celebrations held at Delhi at the National War Memorial
15 January – Indian Army Day
Every year 15 January is observed as Indian Army Day because on this day in 1949 field Marshal Kodandera M Cariappa took over as the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from General Sir Francis Butcher, the last British Commander-in-Chief.
15 January -- Makara Sankranti 
Makara Sankranti or Maghi, is a festival day in the Hindu calendar, dedicated to the deity Surya. It is observed each year in January. It marks the first day of the sun's transit into Makara, marking the end of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days. 
Observances: Kite flying.
Date: Wednesday, 15 January, 2020
Celebrations: Kite flying, bonfires, fairs, surya puja in river, feast, arts, dance, socialization
Featured in religions: Hinduism
Significance: Harvest festival
Also called: Magha, Môkôr Sôngkrānti, Mela, Maghi, Bhogi
23 January - Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose was born on 23 January, 1897 in Cuttack, Orissa. He was one of the most prominent Indian freedom fighter. His army was known as Indian National Army (INA) or Azad Hind Fauj. He also led an Indian national force from abroad against the Western powers during World War II.
24 January- National Girl Child Day
On 24 January every year National Girl Child Day is celebrated to highlight the inequalities faced by a majority of the girls in India, importance of education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care and safety of girl children etc.
25 January- National Voters Day
Every year on 25 January National Voter's Day or Rashtriya Matdata Diwas is celebrated to encourage young voters to take part in the political process. In 2011 first time this day was celebrated to mark Election Commission's Foundation Day.
25 January- National Tourism Day
Every year on 25 January National Tourism Day is celebrated in India to raise the awareness and educate people about the importance of tourism and the role it plays in the Indian economy.
26 January- Republic Day
On 26 November, 1949 Indian Constituent Assembly adopted the Constitution the supreme law of the land and replaced the Government of India Act 1935. It came into effect on 26 January 1950 with a democratic government system. This day marks with the largest parade took place at Rajpath, Delhi every year.
26 January – International Customs Day
International Customs Day (ICD) is celebrated every year on 26 January by Custom Organisation to recognise the role of custom officials and agencies in maintaining border security. It also focuses on the working conditions and challenges that custom officers face in their jobs.
28 January- Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
Lala Lajpat Rai was born on 28 January, 1865 in Punjab. He was a prominent nationalist leader who played an important role in India’s struggle for freedom. He also earned the title of 'Punjab Kesari' or 'the Lion of the Punjab'. He initiated the foundation of Punjab National Bank. He died on 17 November, 1928, due to serious injuries. The University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences in Hisar, Haryana is named after Lala Lajpat Rai.
30 January – Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January is celebrated as Martyr's Day or Shaeed Diwas every year in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi and sacrifice of three revolutionaries of India. As, on 30 January, 1948, the 'Father of Nation' was assassinated. And on 23rd March 3 heroes namely Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru and Sukhdev Thapar of the nation were hanged to death by British.
30 January – World Leprosy Eradication Day
World Leprosy Day is observed on 30 January every year to focus on the target of zero cases of leprosy-related disabilities in children. As, we know that disabilities do not occur overnight but happen after a prolonged period of undiagnosed disease.

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Important Current Affairs 13th January 2020


INTERNATIONAL NEWS 


Tehran to host dialogue forum on Hormuz peace initiative.
•    India participated in the Tehran Dialogue Forum, the 23rd Persian Gulf International Conference held in Tehran, Iran from January 06- 07, 2020.  
•    During the forum, India supported the Hormuz Peace initiative 2020. 
•    The initiative was done so as to seek stability in one of the world’s busiest and strategically located shipping lanes i.e, Strait of Hormuz amid escalating US-Iran tensions. 
•    Oman, India, China and Afghanistan were the key participants.
•    Hormuz Peace initiative 2020 in Tehran Dialogue Forum:
o    Plans under HOPE: The meeting reviewed the latest developments in the Persian Gulf region and also evaluated the regional cooperation plans under the ‘Hormuz Peace Endeavor’ (HOPE), proposed by Tehran at the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) that was held in September 2019.It was presented by Iran President Hassan Rouhani at UNGA.
o    Strait of Hormuz:The Strait of Hormuz is one of the world’s most strategically important choke points. It has Iran in the northern coat, UAE (United Arab Emirates) and Musandam, an enclave of Oman in the southern coast. It acts as an important gateway for significant amount of global oil supplies.
•    Length: The strait is 90 nautical miles (167 km) long, with a width varying from about 52 nautical miles to 21 nautical miles.
•    Oil & LNG supply to India: 2/3rd of oil and 50% of liquefied natural gas (LNG) imported to India comes through the strait between Iran and Oman.
•    General statistics: Everyday 18 million barrels of oil pass through the Strait of Hormuz that accounts for 1/3rd of the global oil trade. 1/3rd of the world’s LNG trade also passes through the strait.
o    Waterway issues: In june 2019, 2 oil tankers were damaged by explosions. The United States(US) blamed Iran for the attack as a response to the US tightening sanctions in Iran. however, Iran denied it. Since the explosion Indian ships under the assistance of Indian Navy(IN) passes through the waterway.
o    Members present:Foreign Minister of Oman Yusuf bin Alawi and former President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai and members from China and experts, directors of various foreing think tanks, and ambassadors participated in the forum.
•    About Iran:
Capital- Tehran.
Currency- Iranian rial.
President- Hassan Rouhani.
Supreme leader- Ali Khamenei.

World Future Energy Summit | Abu Dhabi | 13-16 Jan 2020
•    The 13th edition of the World Future Energy Summit was inaugurated in Abu Dhabi on January 13, 2020 by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
•    The four-day summit is expected to see nearly 33,500 visitors. It will conclude on January 16.
•    As a part of the event, the Climate Innovations Exchange (CLIX) and the Future Sustainability Summit will also be conducted.
•    The Future Sustainability Summit is being held under the theme “Rethinking Global Consumption, Production, and Investment.”

Bangladesh to hold world's second largest Muslim congregation 'Bishwa Ijtema' in January 2020
•    First phase of “Bishwa Ijtema” has commenced in Dhaka, Bangladesh. It is the second largest congregation of Muslim community after Hajj. 
•    The second phase of the congregation will be held from January 17 to 19.
•    Bishwa Ijtema is an annual event which is taking place on the outskirts of Dhaka since 1967. 
•    It is being organised in a field of 160 acres, on the bank of the Turag river at Tongi on the outskirts of Dhaka. 
•    The congregation draws devotees of Muslim community from about 150 countries, hence making it the second largest congregation of Muslim community after Hajj.
•    Prime Minister of Bangladesh: Sheikh Hasina; Capital: Dhaka; Currency: Taka.

NATIONAL NEWS

Ordinance promulgated for amendment of MMDR Act and CMSP Act; paves way for growth in Coal and Mining sector

•    The central govt has promulgated ordinance for amendment in the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act 1957 (MMDR act 1957) and The Coal Mines (special provisions) act, 2015 (CMSP act 2015) in order to ease new areas of growth in the coal & mining sector.
•    The amendments in detail are as follows:
o    Enhance ease of doing business & Democratization of coal mining sector.
o    Unexplored and partially explored coal blocks mining through prospecting license-cum-mining Lease (PL- cum-ML) will be offered.
o    Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) promotion in the coal mining  sector.
o    Attracting large investment in coal mining sector.
o    Allowing of successful bidder/allottee to utilise mined coal in any of the plant of its subsidiary or holding company Attracting large investment in coal mining sector as restrictions of end use has been dropped.
o    New Section in mines created: A new section 4B (after section 4A) has been inserted to enable the Central Govt. to prescribe conditions for ensuring sustained production by the holder of mining leases, who have acquired clearances etc.The Central govt has the power to prescribe the conditions for the new lessees to commence production without prejudice to the time period of 2 years for starting the production prescribed in Section 4A.
o    Flexibility in deciding the end use of Schedule II and III coal mines: The end use of Schedule II and III coal mines under the CMSP Act has been provided with flexibility through omission of sub-section (3) of Section 4 of CMSP Act.

Sachin Bansal acquires DHFL General Insurance
•    Flipkart co-founder and former CEO Sachin Bansal has acquired DHFL General Insurance from Kapil Wadhawan-led Wadhawan Group Capital (WGC) for around Rs 100 crore.
•    WGC is the parent company of debt-laden Dewan Housing Finance Limited (DHFL) and this deal is seen as a distress sale.
•    With this acquisition, Bansal has entered into insurance business, and the investment is also seen as part of his strategy to enter into financial services industry.
•    In the recent past, Bansal had done multiple investments in insurance business to increase his portfolio of firms in the sector.

 National Youth Festival 2020 : Begins in Lucknow
•    The 23rd edition of the National Youth Festival (NYF) 2020 was inaugurated at Indira Pratishthan, Lucknow on 12 January 2020. It will continue till 16 January 2020.
•    The 5-day long festival has been jointly organised by Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports and State Government of Uttar Pradesh.
•    Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Shri Yogi Adityanath and the Minister of State (I/C) for Youth Affairs & Sports, Shri Kiren Rijiju inaugurated the NYF 2020, on the occasion of birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda, the great Youth icon.
•    The theme of the 23rd National Youth Festival 2020 is ‘FIT YOUTH FIT INDIA’ 
•    NYF 2020 would have around 6000 participants from each State.
•    The Government has been organizing National Youth Festival (NYF) since 1995 to provide a platform to bring the youth of the country together in an attempt to provide them opportunity to showcase their talents in various activities.

BANKING AND ECONOMICS


SEBI CMD Post Split: SEBI Extends Deadline By Two Years.
•    January 13, 2020, Stock market regulator SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) has extended the deadline for the separation of the posts of Chairman and MD (Managing Director) or chief executive officer (CEO) for 500 listed companies by 2 years. 
•    Now this rule has to be followed by April 2022.
•    The first deadline issued by SEBI was April 2020. The move comes after the companies were asking for more time to keep expenses down due to the slowdown in the economy.
•    Background: The rules to separate the post of Chairman-MD are part of the recommendations of the Uday Kotak (MD of Kotak Mahindra Bank) Committee appointed by SEBI on Corporate Governance. Having a post of chairman and MD or CEO is expected to cause a conflict of interest to the board of directors and management. In many companies including Reliance Industries, the chairman and MD are handled by the same person.
•    About SEBI:
Formation– April 12, 1988
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Chairman– Ajay Tyagi

RBI puts curbs on Sri Guru Raghavendra Sahakara Bank in Bengaluru from doing business
•    On January 10, 2020 the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has curbed Sri Guru Raghavendra Sahakara Bank, a private bank in Bengaluru, Karnataka from doing business with immediate effect. 
•    This has been done after finding alleged irregularities in transactions. 
•    The bank’s savings and current account customers and depositors can however withdraw cash up to ₹35,000 only till further notice.
•    Act: RBI’s Chief General Manager Yogesh Dayal issued the directive under Sections 35A and 56 of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949, from Mumbai, Maharashtra.
•    Without the approval of RBI, the bank cannot write, grant or renew loans and advances, make investment, borrow funds or accept fresh deposits from January 10, 2020.
•    The directive will remain in force for 6 months from January 10 and is subject to review,” added the official.
•    About Sri Guru Raghavendra Sahakara Bank:
Established- 1964
Headquarters- Bangalore, Karnataka.
Tagline- A cooperative bank with corporate vision.
President- Dr. K Ramakrishna.
Motto- Service to the Common Man.
 

SPORTS


ISSF rankings: India finishes 2019 as No. 1
•    Based upon the International Shooting Sport Federation’s (ISSF) overall rankings of Nation for 2019, India finished the year as the top shooting nation in the world leaving behind China and USA.
•    In terms of overall medals, India’s tally stood at 30 medals overall consisting 21 gold, six silver and three bronze as India topped all the Rifle-Pistol World Cups and Finals.
•    China was second with 44 medals overall, including 11 gold, 15 silver and 18 bronze.
•    The USA stood third with 15 medals including six gold six silver and three bronze.
•    National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) President: Raninder Singh.

Novak Djokovic leads Serbia to victory over Spain in ATP Cup
•    Serbia has won the inaugural 2020 ATP Cup tennis tournament, defeating Spain 2–1 in the final on 12 January 2020 in Sydney.
•    Serbia’s Novak Djokovic was the key performer in the tournament.
•    The World No. 2 Djokovic claimed a straight sets victory over the World No. 1 Rafael Nadal, 6-2, 7-6 (7-4) in singles.
•    Further, in doubles also, Djokovic and Viktor Troicki claimed 6-3, 6-4 straight sets victory  over Feliciano Lopez and Pablo Carreno Busta.
•    ATP Cup was the opener for the 2020 ATP Tour, as well as the first ATP team tournament since the last edition of the World Team Cup in 2012.

APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS


Robert Abela wins election to be prime minister of Malta
•    On January 12,2020 Malta’s governing party has elected a new leader Robert Abela as 14th prime minister of Malta. He replaces Joseph Muscat, who resigned over the murder of a journalist. 
•    Robert Abela is the son of the Malta’s Former President George Abela.
Robert Abela, 42-years old lawyer won the Labour Party Leadership contest with 57.9% of the vote and beat his closest rival Chris Fearne 56-years old surgeon by more than 2,500 votes.
•    Joseph Muscat announced his resignation last month over the scandal surrounding the muder of Daphne Caruana Galizia.
•    Galizia was killed by a car bomb in 2017 as she investigated corruption in Malta.
•    Caruana Galizia,known as the “one woman WikiLeaks”,exposed corruption at the highest levels of   government and business circles in Malta.
•    About Malta:
Capital- Valletta.
Currency- Euro.
President- George Vella. 

Haitham bin Tariq sworn in as Oman's new sultan
•    On January 11, 2020 Haitham bin Tariq Al Said (66) was appointed as the new ruler of the Oman after the death of Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al Said who ruled the country from 1970.
•    Haritham bin Tariq Al Said who is the cousin of the deceased Sultan Qaboos, was the Cultural and Heritage Minister of Oman.
•    In 2013 he was appointed by the Sultan Qaboos to chair the main committee responsible for Oman’s development.
•    Haritham bin Tariq was an oxford graduate who spent 16 years in various roles with the Foriegn Ministry from 1986.
•    He was also incharge for Oman’s Vision 2040 Program.
•    About Oman:
Capital- Muscat
Currency- Omani rial


DAYS


January 2020 Important Days
Date     Name of important Days
1 January    Global Family Day
8 January    African National Congress Foundation Day
9 January    NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
11 January    Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
12 January    National Youth Day
15 January
15 January    Indian Army Day

Makar Sankranti
23 January    Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
24 January    National Girl Child Day
25 January    National Voters Day
25 January    National Tourism Day
26 January    Republic Day
26 January    International Customs Day
28 January    Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
30 January    Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January    World Leprosy Eradication Day

1 January – Global Family Day
It is celebrated as a day of peace and sharing. Its aim is to unite and spread message of peace by considering and promoting an idea that Earth is a one Global Family so as to make world a better place to live for everyone.
8 January - African National Congress Foundation Day
South African Native National Congress (SANNC) was founded in 8 January 1912 by John Langalibalele Dube in Bloemfontein. Behind this the primary motive was to give voting rights to black and mixed race Africans or to unite African people and spearhead the struggle for fundamental political, social and economic change.

9 January – NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
NRI or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas observed every year on 9 January to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community towards the development of India. This day also commemorates the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to Mumbai on 9 January, 1915.

10 January : World Hindi Day
The World Hindi Day is celebrated every year on 10 January since 2006 to create awareness for the promotion of Hindi in the world, to introduce Hindi as an international language among other things.Former Prime Minister of India Shri Manmohan Singh declared World Hindi Day to be observed on 10 January in the year 2006.Since then, the day is observed by Ministry of External Affairs and Indian Embassies abroad.

11 January – Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
He was the second Prime Minsiter of Independent India. He popularised the slogan 'Jai Jawan Jai Kisan' He actively participated in the India's freedom struggle. Due to cardiac arrest he died on 11 January, 1966.

12 January – National Youth Day
The birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda also called Swami Vivekananda Jayanti is celebrated every year on 12 January. He was born on 12 January, 1863. The government had decided to observe it as National Youth Day because the philosophy of Swamiji and the ideals for which he lived and worked could be a great source of inspiration for the Indian Youth. He had given speech at the Parliament of the World's religions in Chicago and glorified India's name.

15 January – Indian Army Day
Every year 15 January is observed as Indian Army Day because on this day in 1949 field Marshal Kodandera M Cariappa took over as the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from General Sir Francis Butcher, the last British Commander-in-Chief.

15 January -- Makara Sankranti 
Makara Sankranti or Maghi, is a festival day in the Hindu calendar, dedicated to the deity Surya. It is observed each year in January. It marks the first day of the sun's transit into Makara, marking the end of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days. 
Observances: Kite flying.
Date: Wednesday, 15 January, 2020
Celebrations: Kite flying, bonfires, fairs, surya puja in river, feast, arts, dance, socialization
Featured in religions: Hinduism
Significance: Harvest festival
Also called: Magha, Môkôr Sôngkrānti, Mela, Maghi, Bhogi

23 January - Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose was born on 23 January, 1897 in Cuttack, Orissa. He was one of the most prominent Indian freedom fighter. His army was known as Indian National Army (INA) or Azad Hind Fauj. He also led an Indian national force from abroad against the Western powers during World War II.

24 January- National Girl Child Day
On 24 January every year National Girl Child Day is celebrated to highlight the inequalities faced by a majority of the girls in India, importance of education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care and safety of girl children etc.

25 January- National Voters Day
Every year on 25 January National Voter's Day or Rashtriya Matdata Diwas is celebrated to encourage young voters to take part in the political process. In 2011 first time this day was celebrated to mark Election Commission's Foundation Day.
25 January- National Tourism Day
Every year on 25 January National Tourism Day is celebrated in India to raise the awareness and educate people about the importance of tourism and the role it plays in the Indian economy.

26 January- Republic Day
On 26 November, 1949 Indian Constituent Assembly adopted the Constitution the supreme law of the land and replaced the Government of India Act 1935. It came into effect on 26 January 1950 with a democratic government system. This day marks with the largest parade took place at Rajpath, Delhi every year.

26 January – International Customs Day
International Customs Day (ICD) is celebrated every year on 26 January by Custom Organisation to recognise the role of custom officials and agencies in maintaining border security. It also focuses on the working conditions and challenges that custom officers face in their jobs.
28 January- Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
Lala Lajpat Rai was born on 28 January, 1865 in Punjab. He was a prominent nationalist leader who played an important role in India’s struggle for freedom. He also earned the title of 'Punjab Kesari' or 'the Lion of the Punjab'. He initiated the foundation of Punjab National Bank. He died on 17 November, 1928, due to serious injuries. The University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences in Hisar, Haryana is named after Lala Lajpat Rai.

30 January – Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January is celebrated as Martyr's Day or Shaeed Diwas every year in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi and sacrifice of three revolutionaries of India. As, on 30 January, 1948, the 'Father of Nation' was assassinated. And on 23rd March 3 heroes namely Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru and Sukhdev Thapar of the nation were hanged to death by British.

30 January – World Leprosy Eradication Day
World Leprosy Day is observed on 30 January every year to focus on the target of zero cases of leprosy-related disabilities in children. As, we know that disabilities do not occur overnight but happen after a prolonged period of undiagnosed disease.

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Important Current Affairs 12th January 2020

NATIONAL NEWS

Govt launches mission to develop steel sector in eastern India 
•    The Union Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan ‘Mission Purvodaya’ during an event in Kolkata on 11 January 2020 to strengthen steel sector in the Eastern region.
•    Mission Purvodaya is aimed at accelerated development of eastern India through establishment of Integrated Steel Hub.
•    The proposed Integrated Steel Hub, encompassing Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal and Northern Andhra Pradesh, would help towards socio-economic growth of Eastern India.
•    The Minister informed that the eastern belt has the potential to add over 75 percent of the country’s incremental steel capacity envisioned by the National Steel Policy.
•    Out of the 300 Million Tonne capacity by 2030-31, over 200 Million Tonne can come from this region alone.
•    The Integrated Steel Hub would thus enable swift capacity addition, improve the overall competitiveness of steel producers both in terms of cost and quality, growth of steel industry along with employment opportunities across the entire value chain.

BANKING AND ECONOMICS


PM Modi launches projects worth 600 crore rupees on 150th year celebrations of Kolkata Port Trust
•    The Kolkata Port has been renamed as Syama Prasad Mukherjee Port on 12 January 2020, on the occasion of 150 years of operation of Kolkata Port.
•    This announcement was made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during an event at the Netaji Indoor Stadium in Kolkata to celebrate 150th year of celebrations of the port.
•    PM Modi also launched several Port led development projects worth Rs 600 crore as a part of the celebrations.
•    Some of the projects launched include:
o    Upgraded Ship repair facility at Netaji Subhash Dry Dock
o    Upgraded railway infrastructure of Kolkata dock system of the Kolkata Port for smooth cargo movement and river front development scheme
o    Released a commemorative stamp on 150th years of the Kolkata Port Trust
o    Mechanization of Berth No. 3 at Haldia Dock
o    Inaugurated the Kaushal Vikas Kendra and Pritilata Chhatri Avas for 200 tribal girl students from Sundarbans.
o    Honored two oldest pensioners of the Port Smt. Nagina Bhagat (105 years) and Mr. Naresh Chandra Chakraborty (100 years)
o    Launched the Port Anthem
o    Handed over a cheque of Rs 501 crore to the chairman of LIC Mr. M.R. Kumar towards final installment to meet deficit of pension funds of the Kolkata Port Trust.

India aiming at USD 250 billion maritime economy by 2024: Defence Secretary 

•    India is aiming at a $250 billion maritime economy by 2024, which the Indian Coast Guard has the responsibility to safeguard.
•    With a target of becoming a USD 5 trillion economy by 2024, we are looking at over USD 250 billion coming from the maritime zone. 
•    The maritime economy constitutes nearly five per cent of the world economy

AWARDS AND RECOGNITION 


Jasprit Bumrah to receive Polly Umrigar Award.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Annual Awards for 2018-19 were presented on 12 January 2020 in Mumbai. Given below is the complete list of winners.
1.    CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award: Krishnamachari Srikkanth
2.    BCCI Lifetime Achievement Award For Women: Anjum Chopra
3.    BCCI Special Award: Dilip Joshi
4.    Dilip Sardesai Award (Highest run getter in Tests): Cheteshwar Pujara
5.    Dilip Sardesai Award (Highest wicket taker in Tests): Jasprit Bumrah
6.    Highest run getter in women’s internationals: Smriti Mandhana
7.    Highest wicket taker in women’s internationals: Jhulan Goswami
8.    Polly Umrigar Award for Best International Cricketer (Men): Jasprit Bumrah
9.    Best International Cricketer (Women): Poonam Yadav
10.    Best International debut (Men): Mayank Agarwal
11.    Best International debut (Women): Shafali Verma
12.    Lala Amarnath Award for Best all-rounder in Ranji Trophy: Shivam Dube (Mumbai)
13.    Lala Amarnath Award for Best all-rounder in Domestic Limited Overs competition: Nitish Rana (Delhi)
14.    Madhavrao Scindia Award for highest run getter in Ranji Trophy: Milind Kumar (Sikkim)
15.    Madhavrao Scindia Award for highest wicket taker in Ranji Trophy: Ashutosh Aman (Bihar)
16.    MA Chidambaram Trophy for Highest Run Getter in CK Nayudu Trophy: Manan Hingrajia (Gujarat)
17.    MA Chidambaram Trophy for Highest Wicket Taker in CK Nayudu Trophy: Sidak Singh (Pondicherry)
18.    MA Chidambaram Trophy for Highest Run Getter in Cooch Behar Trophy: Vathsal Govind (Kerala)
19.    MA Chidambaram Trophy for Highest Wicket Taker in Cooch Behar Trophy: Apurva Anand (Bihar)
20.    Jagmohan Dalmiya Trophy for Highest Run Getter in Vijay Merchant Trophy: Aryan Hooda (Jharkhand)
21.    Jagmohan Dalmiya Trophy for Highest Wicket Taker in Vijay Merchant Trophy: Abhishek Yadav (Jharkhand)
22.    Jagmohan Dalmiya Trophy for Best Senior Women’s Cricketer in Domestic competition: Deepti Sharma (Bengal)
23.    Jagmohan Dalmiya Trophy for Best Junior Women’s Cricketer in Domestic competition: Shafali Verma (Haryana)
24.    Best Umpire: Virender Sharma
25.    Best Performance in Domestic Tournaments: Vidarbha

SPORTS


Badminton: Japan's Kento Momota easily wins Malaysia Masters.
•    World number one Kento Momota of Japan won the 2020 Malaysia Masters defeating Denmark’s Viktor Axelsen 24-22, 21-11 on 12 January 2020.
•    The 2020 Malaysia Masters was the first tournament of the 2020 BWF World Tour.
6.    Karolina Pliskova wins in Brisbane but 'starts from zero' heading into Australian Open.
•    Czech Republic’s Karolina Pliskova defeat Madison Keys of United States 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 to win 2020 Brisbane International Tennis Tournament held at Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
•    This was Pliskova’s third Brisbane title in four years and her 16th on the WTA tour.
•    In doubles category, Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strýcova defeated Ashleigh Barty and Kiki Bertens.
•    Brisbane International is a WTA Premier tournament of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Tour.


APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATIONS


Tsai Ing-wen wins second term as Taiwan president.
•    Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen has secured a landslide victory in 2020 presidential elections with 57 percent of the vote in favour to win second term as the President of the Republic of China (Taiwan).
•    63-year old Tsai was the first female leader of the country, when she assumed charge for first term in May 2016.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY


Naval variant of LCA Tejas successfully lands on carrier
•    The naval version of the indigenously-built Tejas light combat aircraft (LCR) successfully undertook the maiden ski-jump take-off from the aircraft carrier INS Vikramadity on 12 January 2020.
•    Earlier on 11 January 2020, the aircraft made its first landing on the deck of INS Vikramaditya, which is currently deployed in the Arabian Sea.
•    The successful landing and take off by the aircraft on INS Vikramaditya is a “great event” in the history of Indian fighter aircraft development programme.
•    The achievement put India among a select group of nations having the capability to design such a jet which can operate from an aircraft carrier.
•    The naval variant of Tejas has been developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) along with Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), Aircraft Research and Design Centre of Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, Centre for Military Airworthiness and Certification (CEMILAC) and CSIR among others.

OBITUARY

Veteran PTI journalist Babul Baruahhas died of prolonged illness.

•    He was associated with the premier news agency for nearly 40 years.
•     He was 80.
    

DAYS


January 2020 Important Days
Date     Name of important Days
1 January    Global Family Day
8 January    African National Congress Foundation Day
9 January    NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
11 January    Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
12 January    National Youth Day
15 January

15 January    Indian Army Day
Makar Sankranti
23 January    Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
24 January    National Girl Child Day
25 January    National Voters Day
25 January    National Tourism Day
26 January    Republic Day
26 January    International Customs Day
28 January    Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
30 January    Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January    World Leprosy Eradication Day

1 January – Global Family Day
It is celebrated as a day of peace and sharing. Its aim is to unite and spread message of peace by considering and promoting an idea that Earth is a one Global Family so as to make world a better place to live for everyone.

8 January - African National Congress Foundation Day
South African Native National Congress (SANNC) was founded in 8 January 1912 by John Langalibalele Dube in Bloemfontein. Behind this the primary motive was to give voting rights to black and mixed race Africans or to unite African people and spearhead the struggle for fundamental political, social and economic change.
9 January – NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Day or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
NRI or Pravasi Bharatiya Divas observed every year on 9 January to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community towards the development of India. This day also commemorates the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to Mumbai on 9 January, 1915.

10 January : World Hindi Day
The World Hindi Day is celebrated every year on 10 January since 2006 to create awareness for the promotion of Hindi in the world, to introduce Hindi as an international language among other things.Former Prime Minister of India Shri Manmohan Singh declared World Hindi Day to be observed on 10 January in the year 2006.Since then, the day is observed by Ministry of External Affairs and Indian Embassies abroad.

11 January – Death anniversary of Lal Bahadur Shastri
He was the second Prime Minsiter of Independent India. He popularised the slogan 'Jai Jawan Jai Kisan' He actively participated in the India's freedom struggle. Due to cardiac arrest he died on 11 January, 1966.

12 January – National Youth Day
The birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda also called Swami Vivekananda Jayanti is celebrated every year on 12 January. He was born on 12 January, 1863. The government had decided to observe it as National Youth Day because the philosophy of Swamiji and the ideals for which he lived and worked could be a great source of inspiration for the Indian Youth. He had given speech at the Parliament of the World's religions in Chicago and glorified India's name.
15 January – Indian Army Day
Every year 15 January is observed as Indian Army Day because on this day in 1949 field Marshal Kodandera M Cariappa took over as the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from General Sir Francis Butcher, the last British Commander-in-Chief.

15 January -- Makara Sankranti 
Makara Sankranti or Maghi, is a festival day in the Hindu calendar, dedicated to the deity Surya. It is observed each year in January. It marks the first day of the sun's transit into Makara, marking the end of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days. 
Observances: Kite flying.
Date: Wednesday, 15 January, 2020
Celebrations: Kite flying, bonfires, fairs, surya puja in river, feast, arts, dance, socialization
Featured in religions: Hinduism
Significance: Harvest festival
Also called: Magha, Môkôr Sôngkrānti, Mela, Maghi, Bhogi

23 January - Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose was born on 23 January, 1897 in Cuttack, Orissa. He was one of the most prominent Indian freedom fighter. His army was known as Indian National Army (INA) or Azad Hind Fauj. He also led an Indian national force from abroad against the Western powers during World War II.

24 January- National Girl Child Day
On 24 January every year National Girl Child Day is celebrated to highlight the inequalities faced by a majority of the girls in India, importance of education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care and safety of girl children etc.
25 January- National Voters Day
Every year on 25 January National Voter's Day or Rashtriya Matdata Diwas is celebrated to encourage young voters to take part in the political process. In 2011 first time this day was celebrated to mark Election Commission's Foundation Day.

25 January- National Tourism Day
Every year on 25 January National Tourism Day is celebrated in India to raise the awareness and educate people about the importance of tourism and the role it plays in the Indian economy.
26 January- Republic Day
On 26 November, 1949 Indian Constituent Assembly adopted the Constitution the supreme law of the land and replaced the Government of India Act 1935. It came into effect on 26 January 1950 with a democratic government system. This day marks with the largest parade took place at Rajpath, Delhi every year.

26 January – International Customs Day
International Customs Day (ICD) is celebrated every year on 26 January by Custom Organisation to recognise the role of custom officials and agencies in maintaining border security. It also focuses on the working conditions and challenges that custom officers face in their jobs.
28 January- Birth Anniversary of Lala Lajpat Rai
Lala Lajpat Rai was born on 28 January, 1865 in Punjab. He was a prominent nationalist leader who played an important role in India’s struggle for freedom. He also earned the title of 'Punjab Kesari' or 'the Lion of the Punjab'. He initiated the foundation of Punjab National Bank. He died on 17 November, 1928, due to serious injuries. The University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences in Hisar, Haryana is named after Lala Lajpat Rai.

30 January – Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas
30 January is celebrated as Martyr's Day or Shaeed Diwas every year in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi and sacrifice of three revolutionaries of India. As, on 30 January, 1948, the 'Father of Nation' was assassinated. And on 23rd March 3 heroes namely Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru and Sukhdev Thapar of the nation were hanged to death by British.

30 January – World Leprosy Eradication Day
World Leprosy Day is observed on 30 January every year to focus on the target of zero cases of leprosy-related disabilities in children. As, we know that disabilities do not occur overnight but happen after a prolonged period of undiagnosed disease.

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