GK Update 1st & 2nd November 2020

1. PM Modi launches India’s first seaplane service in Gujarat

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched the country’s first seaplane service between the Statue of Unity near Kevadiya in Gujarat’s Narmada district and Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad.
  • He travelled in the maiden flight of the twin-engine plane from pond-3 close to Sardar Sarovar Dam and landed at Sabarmati riverfront where a water aerodrome has been set up.
  • The 19-seater seaplane will be managed by private airline SpiceJet.
  • The service will cover the 200km distance between Sabarmati and Kevadia, in just 45 minutes by flight, which usually takes 4 hours.
  • The flight will be able to accommodate 12 passengers and tickets will cost Rs 4,800 per person.`
  • There will be four flights a day between Ahmedabad and Kevadia on each side, which means four arrivals and four departures.

2. Harsh Vardhan launches SERB-POWER schemes to support women scientists

  • The Union Minister of Science and Technology, Harsh Vardhan has launched the ‘SERB – POWER’ schemes which aim to encourage and support emerging as well as eminent women researchers to undertake R&D activities in frontier areas of science and engineering.
  • SERB-POWER stands for Science and Engineering Research Board – Promoting Opportunities For Women in Exploratory Research.
  • This scheme is formulated to mitigate gender disparity in science and engineering research funding in various S&T programs in Indian academic institutions and R&D Laboratories, to ensure equal access and weighted opportunities for Indian women scientists engaged in research and development activities.

3. India’s first ‘tyre park’ to come up in West Bengal

  • In West Bengal, Kolkata will soon feature India’s first “Tyre Park”, where artworks made from scrap and defective parts will be on display. The West Bengal Transport Corporation will launch this Tyre Park.
  • The Tyre Park, which will come up at the Esplanade area, would have a small cafe where people can sit, relax and enjoy the craftsmanship made from tyres.
  • No scrap material can be labelled as waste, it can be reused and converted into an art form. Scrap tyres, lying as waste in various bus depots, have been reworked and converted to colourful shapes by the in-house team of WBTC.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Chief Minister of West Bengal: Mamata Banerjee; Governor: Jagdeep Dhankhar.

4. PM Modi inaugurates ‘Arogya Van’ in Gujarat’s Narmada district

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the ‘Arogya Van’ in the Narmada district of Gujarat. PM Modi was accompanied by Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and Governor Acharya Devvrat.
  • Arogya Van is set up on 17 acres of land in Kevadia for spreading awareness on Yoga, Ayurveda and Meditation.
  • It features around 380 species of plants and trees with rich medicinal values.
  • The ‘Aarogya Van’ comprises a lotus pond, alba garden, aroma garden, yoga and meditation garden, indoor plant section, digital information centre, souvenir shop and a cafeteria serving Ayurveda foods, among other things.
  • PM also inaugurated Arogya Kutir, Ekta Mall, and Children Nutrition Park.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Gujarat Chief Minister: Vijay Rupani.
  • Gujarat Governor: Acharya Devvrat.

5. India Successfully test fires BrahMos Missile from Sukhoi 30 MKI

  • The Indian Air Force (IAF) successfully test-fired an air-launched version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from a Sukhoi fighter aircraft in the Bay of Bengal.
  • The aircraft took off from an airbase in Punjab & reached the Bay of Bengal after mid-air refuelling.
  • The missile successfully hit a sinking ship in the Bay of Bengal, with deadly accuracy.
  • This test was the longest range BrahMos strike that was undertaken by the Sukhoi 30 MKI platform.
  • This missile was developed by DRDO, the air-launched version of nuclear-capable BrahMos has a strike range of 300 km with the capability to hit targets at sea or land in all weather conditions.

6. Malayalam writer Paul Zacharia selected for Ezhuthachan Puraskaram 2020

  • Noted Malayalam writer, Paul Zacharia has been selected for this year’s Ezhuthachan Puraskaram, the Kerala government’s highest literary honour.
  • Zacharia was chosen for his contribution to Malayalam literature during the past five decades.

7. Jio named title sponsor for BCCI’s Women T20 Challenge 2020

  • The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced Jio as the Title Sponsor of the 2020 edition of the Women’s T20 Challenge.
  • The partnership will also have the support of Reliance Foundation Education and Sports For All (RF ESA).
  • This is a historic partnership, as for the first time a sponsor has signed with BCCI exclusively for the women’s matches.
  • The Jio Women’s T20 Challenge to be played from 4th November to 9th November will be held in Sharjah.
  • Three teams are Velocity, Supernovas and Trailblazers will play each other once to decide the finalists on November 9, a day before the IPL final.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • President of BCCI: Sourav Ganguly.
  • Headquarters of BCCI: Mumbai, Maharashtra; Founded: December 1928.

8. Indian boxers Amit Panghal wins gold at the Alexis Vastine International

  • Indian boxers Amit Panghal, Sanjeet and Ashish Kumar have won gold medals at the recently concluded Alexis Valentine International Boxing Tournament held in Nantes, France.
  • The tournament was the first international event that Indian boxers were a part of since the lockdown.

9. International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists

  • The International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists is an UN-recognized day observed annually on 2 November.
  • The day draws attention to the low global conviction rate for violent crimes against journalists and media workers, estimated at only one in every ten cases.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • UNESCO headquarters: Paris, France.
  • UNESCO Head: Audrey Azoulay.
  • UNESCO Founded: 16 November 1945.

10. World Vegan Day: 01 November

  • World Vegan Day is observed globally on 1st November every year. This day is celebrated to spread benefits of veganism for humans, non-human animals, and the natural environment.
  • Vegan Day is an opportunity to promote the benefits of a vegan diet and veganism in general.
  • The term vegan was coined by Donald Watson and derived from the word Vegetarian. At that time, the differentiation was that Vegans did not consume dairy products.

11. Former Turkish Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz passes away

  • Veteran Politician and former prime minister of Turkey, Mesut Yilmaz has passed away. He was the Chief of the now-defunctional centre-right Motherland Party or ANAP from 1991 to 2002.
  • He served as prime minister of Turkey three times in the 1990s. His first two prime-ministerial terms lasted for just one month, in 1991 and then in 1996, while the third term was from June 1997 to January 1999.

12. UNESCO allots India’s Panna Tiger Reserve ‘Biosphere Reserve’ status

  • In Madhya Pradesh, the Panna Tiger Reserve has been included in the ‘World Network of Biosphere Reserves’ list of the UNESCO.
  • This is the 12th biosphere reserve from India to be included in the ‘World Network of Biosphere Reserves’, and third from Madhya Pradesh, after Pachmarhi and Amarkantak.
  • Currently, Panna Tiger Reserve is home to 54 tigers.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Madhya Pradesh Capital: Bhopal.
  • Madhya Pradesh Governor: Anandiben Patel(additional charge).
  • Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister: Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

13. Indian Railways launches ‘Meri Saheli’ initiative for security of women

  • The Indian Railways has introduced a new initiative called “Meri Saheli” to provide safety and security to women passengers during their train journeys.
  • The Meri Saheli initiative has been launched by the Railway Protection Force (RPF) of Indian Railways.
  • A team of lady officer and staff have been formed under the new initiative, which will visit all passenger coaches of the train including ladies coaches, to identify women passengers.
  • The team will note down their journey details like coach number and seat number, especially if a lady is travelling alone on the train.
  • Passengers will be briefed about RPF Security Helpline Number 182, GRP Security Helpline Number 1512 as well as other precautions like, not to take food with strangers, buying food from only authorized IRCTC stalls, taking care of luggage, etc.
  • Initially, the “Meri Saheli” initiative has been introduced in two trains namely Bandra Terminus-Amritsar Special and Mumbai Central-Jaipur Superfast Express.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Union Minister of Railways: Piyush Goyal.

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