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NITI Aayog , UNICEF signed a LOI for children Empowerment
Recently, United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) India and NITI Aayog’s Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) to provide an open platform to promote participation, skill and empowerment among young children across different communities.
i. The plan will be implemented through Atal Tinkering Lab which established under Atal Innovation Mission. The LoI was signed by Yasmin Ali Haque, UNICEF representative in India, and Ramanathan Ramanan, Mission Director, Atal Innovation Mission.
♦ Headquarter: New York, USA
♦ Founded: 11 December 1946
♦ Executive Director: Henrietta H. Fore
The Ministry of Environment (MOEFCC) forms panel for efficient implementation of NCAP
The Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MOEFCC) notified that a committee will be formed to implement the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) which was launched to handle the major issue of air-pollution in India. Overall guidance would be provided by the committee to implement and review the progress of NCAP for each financial year.
i.The committee would be headed by its Secretary, C K Mishra, and will comprise of one chief secretary each from around 20 states and union territories, an additional secretary and joint secretary, the chairman of the Central Pollution Control Board, the director general of TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute) and an IIT Kanpur professor as its members.
ii. The committee with its headquarters in Delhi, will cater to information sharing and solving issues under the NCAP and will make sure that there is effective inter-ministerial or organisational cooperation.
iii. MOEFCC launched the scheme NCAP on 10th January, 2019.
Qatar’s to abolish Exit Visa system by 2019: UN
On 26th April 2019, UN’s International Labour Organization (ILO) announced that Qatar is set to abolish its exit visa system for all foreign workers by the end of 2019.The country was committed to labour reform following an Amnesty international report that the 2022 World Cup host was failing to stop widespread labour abuse.
i. Qatar has launched labour reforms since its selection as the 2022 World Cup host, with the event set in motion a huge construction plan employing foreign workers.
ii. In 2018, Qatar approved legislation to dismiss the sponsorship system or “kafala”, which claimed that foreign workers obtain permission from their employers to leave the country.
iii. Qatar has introduced a monthly minimum wage of 750 riyals ($206) and agreed to work closely with the International Labour Organization (ILO).
♦ Capital: Doha
♦ Currency: Qatari riyal
♦ Government : Unitary monarchy
♦ Emir: Tamim bin Hamad
♦ Prime Minister: Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani
♦ Qatar National Day: 18 December 1878
About International Labour Organization:
♦ Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland
♦ Head: Guy Ryder
♦ Founder : Paris Peace Conference, 1919
♦ Founded : 1919
♦ Formation: 29 October 1919
BANKING & FINANCE
IRDAI set up Suresh Mathur Committee comprising of 13 members to review regulatory framework on micro-insurance
The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) set up a 13-member committee in order to review regulatory framework on micro insurance, and suggest the steps to be taken to raise demand for such products in India by recommending product designs with customer-friendly underwriting, example, easy premium payment methods and simple claims settlement procedures.
i. The committee is headed by Suresh Mathur, IRDAI’s Executive Director. It constitutes of officials from IRDAI, life, general and health insurance companies in public and private sectors, as well as NGOs (Non-Government Organizations).
ii. The committee was formed because of less than desired offtake of microinsurance products in spite of their immense benefits in India.
iii. It will also give recommendations about an alteration in distribution structure, that is, creating effective awareness programmes and making web-based technology-driven solutions.
iv. Their suggestions have to be submitted within a three month time frame, that is within 90 days.
i. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) is an autonomous, statutory body beholding the task of regulation, promotion and lowering of premium of the insurance (to ensure financial security of the insurance sector) and re-insurance industries in India.
ii. It was created by IRDA (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority) Act,1999 passed by the Indian Government with its headquarters in Hyderabad, Telangana.
i. The micro-insurance is defined and enabled by IRDAI Micro-insurance Regulations, 2005.
ii. IRDAI created micro-insurance policies, which comprises of a General or Life Insurance policy with an assured sum of Rs 50,000 or less in order to promote insurance coverage among low-income sections of the society.
iii. General Micro-Insurance product is a Health insurance contract that is on an individual or group basis and is inclusive of personal belongings like home, cattle, tools, instruments or any personal accident contract. This business if mostly carried out by (NGOs) and Self-Help Groups (SHGs).
HDFC Bank and Max Bupa launch AnyTimeHealth machines to distribute health insurance products
Max Bupa, India’s health insurance company collaborated with HDFC Bank, India’s leading private sector banks, and launched ‘AnyTimeHealth (ATH) machines. The machine is an automated, web-based model that permits customers to avail health assessment, namely, Body Mass Index’, ‘Blood Pressure’, ‘Body Type & Fat percentage’, ‘Muscle percentage’, ‘Bone Mass’, ‘Body Temperature’ and buy health policy dynamically without incorporation of any kind of conventional manual efforts.
i. Max Bupa offers customisable products to HDFC bank’s customers, through digital touch points, that is, Max Bupa’s plans, namely, ‘heartbeat, health companion, Goactive and health recharge’.
ii. Max Bupa partnered with HDFC Bank to design an end-to-end ‘digital journey’ for the bank’s customers, which is designed to support HDFC Bank’s assisted and non-assisted mode of selling insurance digitally, thus empowering the HDFC’s customers to avail health insurance solutions proficiently.
iii. The collaborative effort of HDFC Bank and Max Bupa to make quality healthcare available through digital medium will help fulfil the health insurance needs of HDFC bank’s 40+ million customers across India.
RBI extends the previous ombudsman scheme to non-deposit taking NBFCs having asset size of Rs.100 crore or higher
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) extended the ombudsman scheme coverage to non-deposit taking (NBFCs) Non-banking Financial Companies having an asset size of Rs.100 crore or higher.
This was notified in the Statement of Developmental and Regulatory Policies under the Monetary Policy Statement.
i. The objective of this was to provide a cost-free and swift complaint-redressal mechanism relating to shortage in the services, concerning loan and other issues by NBFCs under the scheme.
ii. The scheme before the extension to some categories of NBFCs was effective for deposit-accepting NBFCs.
iii. The sectors excluded from the range of the scheme are:
The non banking financial company-infrastructure finance company (NBFC-IFC), core investment company (CIC), infrastructure debt fund-non-banking financial company (IDF-NBFC) and an NBFC under liquidation.
iv. The scheme contains an Appellate mechanism under which the NBFC has the option to appeal before the appellate authority against any of the decision of the Ombudsman.
v. There are 4 offices of the NBFC ombudsmen functional at: Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai and New Delhi. These handle customer-complaints in the respective zones.
RBI notified that banking ombudsman saw 25% rise in customer complaints in FY18 over FY17
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) notified that the banking ombudsman received 24.9% more customer complaints in FY18 over FY17, with 21 offices of the banking ombudsman receiving 1,63,590 complaints in 2017-18, thus marking a hike of 24.9% over 2016-2017. Overall, the complaint disposal rate was 96.5% in FY18 and 92% in FY17.
i. The (BO Scheme) banking ombudsman scheme was introduced in 1995. It was a cost-free and swift grievance redressal mechanism for customers of banks.
ii. The BO Scheme was later revised to boost the powers of BOs by removing the limit of₹10 lakh on the award that BOs can pass and doubling the amount of compensation for loss to ₹20 lakh.
iii. The report notified that majorly complaints were received for non-observance of fair practices code (22.1% complaint), ATM and debit card issues (15.1% complaint), credit card issues (7.7% complaint), failure to meet commitments (6.8% complaint), mobile and electronic banking (5.2% complaint). Nationalised banks and State Bank of India (SBI) taken together accounted for 63% of complaints.
iv. The average cost of handling a complaint decreased from Rs 3,626 in 2016-17 to Rs 3,504 in 2017-18.
RBI is going to issue new Rs 20 denomination banknote with greenish-yellow colour
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will issue new Rs 20 denomination banknotes having a base colour of greenish -yellow with size of 63 X 129 mm. The first Rs 20 notes were issued in the Mahatma Gandhi Series in August 2001.
i. The new note will have a motif of Ellora caves on the dorsal side.
ii. The notes will have a geometric pattern in the front and back side, matching with the overall color scheme.
iii. The front side will have a transparent register with denominational numeral 20, a latent image with a numeral and also a Devanagari version of ’20’.
iv. In the centre of the new note there will be a portrait of Mahatma Gandhi and towards the right of the portrait would be written in micro letters, RBI, Bharat, India and 20, the guarantee clause, Governor’s Shaktikanta Das’ signature, the promise clause and RBI emblem, Ashok Pillar emblem and electrotype (20) watermark would be on the top left and bottom side.
Finance Ministry approves EPF interest rate hike to 8.65% for 2018-19
The Department of Financial Services, a wing of the Ministry of Finance, has approved an Employee’s Provident Fund (EPF) interest rate hike of 10 basis point to 8.65 percent for 2018-19, as decided by the retirement fund body Employee’s Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO). This move will benefit more than 6 crores formal sector workers. Earlier in 2017-18, the interest rate on EPF was 8.55 percent.
i. In February 2019, the EPFO’s apex decision-making body, the Central Board of Trustees headed by Labour Minister Santosh Gangwar, had decided to hike the interest rate on EPF. This hike was the first increase in the last three years.
♦ Founded: 4 March, 1952
♦ Headquarter: New Delhi
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
Prasanna Kumar Rao, received the Corporate Excellence award in the Manufacturing Industry, from Enterprise Asia of Malaysia for 2019
Managing Director, Heidelberg Prominent Fluid Controls India Pvt. Ltd., Prasanna Kumar Rao, received the Corporate Excellence award in the Manufacturing Industry, from Enterprise Asia of Malaysia for 2019, at event in Andaz, Hyatt Hotel, New Delhi.
i. The prestigious Asia Pacific Entrepreneurship Award (APEA) from Enterprise Asia is a regional award recognition programme that recognizes entrepreneurial excellence.
ii. Top entrepreneurs across the region are honoured with the awards with ceremonies held in over 14 countries.
iii. Prasanna Kumar Rao is an alumnus of the National Institute of Technology, Surathkal and a founder in the field of Dosing Pumps, Controllers and Chlorine dioxide generators in India. He launched “Prominent” products in India and is presently the Managing Director at Heidelberg Prominent Fluid Controls India Pvt. Ltd. Bengaluru.
Arunachalam Muruganantham, the maker of low-cost sanitary napkins, in Fortune’s 2019 list of world’s greatest leaders
Arunachalam Muruganantham, inventor of a low-cost sanitary pad-making machine and grassroots mechanism has been featured in Fortune magazine’s 2019 list of world’s 100 greatest leaders.He is a social entrepreneur from Tamil Nadu.He ranked 45th in the list released by the American publication.
i. Muruganantham invented the machine in 2004 that remakes the cellulose into low-cost sanitary napkins.
ii. It costs Rs 1,37,000.He has marketed more than 1300 machines across India and other developing countries through his company Jayaashree Industries.
iii. The hero of the Oscar-winning documentary short “Period.End of Sentence” has been awarded a Padma Shri in 2016 and was named TIME magazines 2014 list of 100 Most Influential People in the World.
iv. He, a school drop-out has been a guest lecturer at Ivy league universities, including Harvard in the United States, and at IIT Bombay, IIM Ahmedabad, and IIM Bangalore.
v. Top 3 awardees :
Bill and Melinda Gates – for the work of their charitable organisation Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Jacinda Ardern (New Zealand Prime Minister) – For her response to Christchurch mosque shootings in February.
Robert Mueller – For his findings of the Donald Trump campaign’s collusion with Russia
About Fortune magazine:
♦ Editor: Clifton Leaf
♦ First issue date: February 1930
♦ Based in: New York City, New York, U.S
♦ Companies: Time Inc., IBM
Mizoram Boy Who Tried To Save A Chicken Receives PETA India’s ‘Compassionate Kid’ Award 2019
A six-year-old boy from Mizoram Derek C Lalchhanhima, who saved the life of a chicken he accidentally ran over, has been awarded the ‘Compassionate Kid’ award 2019 by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals(PETA) India. Derek accidentally ran over his neighbor’s chicken. He took the chicken, ran to a nearby hospital in Sairang and with all the money he had and asked for help.
i. A photo of Derek in which he was holding the chicken in one hand and a note of Rs 10 in the other went viral on social media recently which was snapped by a nurse at the primary health centre (PHC) in Sairang in Aizawl district of Mizoram.
About PETA India’s ‘Compassionate Citizen’ programme:
It is designed to help students between the ages of 8 and 12 years to understand and appreciate animals.
♦ Headquarters: Norfolk, Virginia, United States
♦ Founded: 22 March 1980, Rockville, Maryland, United States
♦ President: Ingrid Newkirk
♦ Video game: Kitten Squad
♦ Founders: Ingrid Newkirk, Alex Pacheco
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
DoruIsac named new AIFF technical director
Romanian football manager, Doru Isac has been appointed as the new technical director for Indian football team. He succeeds Savio Madeira, who has been the interim technical director since 2017.
i. All India Football Federation (AIFF) interviewed Isac, Jorge Castelo and GaiozDarsadze on 22 April 2019 for the post, but Isac,56-year-old emerged as the number one choice because of his youth-oriented approach.
ii. He held the position of sporting director at Japanese top division club Yokohama F. Marinos previously and has managerial experiences with MLS’s Houston Dynamos’ U-23s and Romania U-19 national team.
About All India Football Federation (AIFF):
♦ President: Praful Patel
♦ Founded: 23 June 1937
♦ FIFA affiliation: 1948
♦ AFC affiliation: 1954
♦ SAFF affiliation: 1997
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope confirm universe is expanding faster than expected
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)’s Hubble Space Telescope ejected measurements validating that the Universe is expanding about 9% faster than expected based on its trajectory seen shortly after the big bang. It was published in Astrophysical Journal Letters on April 25.
i. The researchers using Hubble as a “point-and-shoot” camera to look at groups of Cepheids using a new method called DASH (Drift And Shift), while Hubble can observe one star for every 90-minute orbit around Earth.
ii. Adam Riess, Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Physics and Astronomy at The Johns Hopkins University, Nobel Laureate and the project’s leader, is the first author of the research.
iii. Riess and his SH0ES (Supernovae, H0, for the Equation of State) Team examined light from 70 stars in our neighboring galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud using DASH method.The stars, called Cepheid variables, brighten and dim at predictable rates that are used to measure nearby intergalactic distances.
♦ Headquarters: Washington, D.C., United States
♦ Founder: Dwight D. Eisenhower
♦ Founded: 29 July 1958, United States
Callichimaeraperplexa: New 95 million-year-old ‘cartoon-eyed’ crab species found in Columbia
Alberta University paleontologists have discovered 95 million-year-old coin-sized ‘cartoon-eyed’ crab species called Callichimaera perplexa. The name is an allusion to a Greek mythological creature & means “perplexing beautiful chimera”.It was published in the journal, Science Advances.
i. Dr Javier Luque, postdoctoral paleontologist at Yale University & the University of Alberta made the discovery in 2005 in the mountains of Pesca, Boyaca in Columbia while hunting for fossils as an undergraduate geology student.
ii. It is believed that the crab is from mid-cretaceous period & it must have hailed from what is now Colombia, Northern Africa & Wyoming.
iii. It is a small pocket-size crab had a tiny lobster-esque shell, legs flattened like oars & huge, & Pound Puppies’ eyes that protruded from its head. This may be due to its excessive use of the eyes.
Asian Boxing Championship 2019
The Asian Boxing Championship 2019 was held in Huamark Indoor Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand. This was the first time women and men boxing championship held together. This event was organized by International Boxing Association or AIBA…………………………………..Click here to Read more
|4.||56-kg||Kavinder Singh Bisht||Silver|
Papua New Guinea, a south-western pacific country got their One Day International (ODI) status and a place in International Cricket Council (ICC) Cricket World Cup League 2 after beating Oman by 145-run.
i. Now, Papua New Guinea joins Namibia, Oman, Scotland, the US, Nepal and UAE in the ICC Cricket World Cup League 2. In the next two-and-a-half-year all six team will play 36 ODIs each in the run-up to the Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.
♦ Headquarter: Dubai, UAE
♦ Chairman: Shashank Manohar
♦ CEO: Dave Richardson (step down after the World Cup in July), Manu Sawhney (Designated)
|Papua New Guinea||Port Moresby||Papua New Guinean Kina|
|Namibia||Windhoek||Namibian Dollar, South African rand|
|USA||Washington D.C||United States Dollar|
|UAE||Abu Dhabi||UAE Dirham|
Australia’s Claire Polosak became first female umpire to stand in men’s ODI
The 31-year-old, Australia’s Claire Polosak became the first woman umpire to stand in a men’s ODI in the final match of ICC World Cricket League 2 on April 27. Previously, she stood in 15 women’s ODI matches, the first one played between Australia and South Africa in November 2016.
i. She also stood some of the important international matches including semi-final of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2018 played between England and India.
ii. She was also the first woman to stand ever in a men’s domestic fixture in Australia in her first List A match in Australia in 2017.
iii. In December 2018, Claire Polosak and her counterpart Eloise Sheridan became the first on-field female umpires during a professional match between Adelaide Strikers and Melbourne Stars in World Big Bash League in Australia.
♦ Capital: Canberra
♦ Currency: Australian Dollar
Shane Watson announced his retirement from Big Bash League
On 26th April 2019, Former Australia all-rounder has announced his retirement from Big Bash League to spend more time with his family during the summer. He captained Sydney Thunder in the Big Bash League (BBL). But he will continue playing for Sutherland DCC (District Cricket Club) in NSW Premier Cricket.
i. He has played 190 one-day internationals, 59 Tests 58 Twenty20 Internationals for his country.
ii. His last international match was in the quarter-final of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2016 against India.
iii. The Big Bash League is an Australian professional Twenty20 cricket league, which was established in 2011 by Cricket Australia.
Former Himachal Pradesh Minister Chaudhary Vidyasagar Died at 84
On 25th April 2019, Former Himachal Pradesh minister and senior BJP leader Chaudhary Vidyasagar died at his home in Zamanabad area in Kangra near Dharamshala at the age of 84 due to age-related ailments.
i. He was elected four times as MLA from Kangra assembly constituency.
ii. The OBC leader in the region had worked as a minister in the state governments led by Shanta Kumar and Prem Kumar Dhumal.
About Himachal Pradesh:
♦ Capital: Shimla
♦ Chief minister: Jai Ram Thakur
♦ Famous Festivals and Fairs: KulluDusshera, Halda, Himachal Winter Carnival, Ice Skating
Carnival, International Himalayan Festival, Summer Festival, Doongri Fair.
♦ Traditional Dance Forms :Gugga Dance, Jhamakada Dance, Chhanak Chham Dance, Losar Shona Chuksam, Enchanting Lahauli Dance, Shiv Badar Nati, Ghurehi,Dandras.
♦ Important Rivers : Sutlej, Beas, Ravi, Chenab, Yamuna.
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