GK Update 21st November 2020

1. PM Modi & Bhutanese PM Jointly launch RuPay Card Phase-II

  • Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi and Bhutan Prime Minister Lotay Tshering virtually launched RuPay card Phase-II, to allow Bhutanese cardholders to access RuPay network in India.
  • In August 2019, PM Modi and his Bhutanese counterpart jointly launched Phase-I of the project.
  • The implementation of Phase-I of RuPay cards in Bhutan has enabled the visitors from India to access ATMs and Point of Sale (PoS) terminals across Bhutan. Phase-II will now allow Bhutanese cardholders to access RuPay network in India.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Bhutan Capital: Thimphu.
  • Bhutan Currency: Bhutanese ngultrum.

2. Oxford Economics revises downwards its India growth forecast

  • Forecasting firm Oxford Economics predicts that India’s post-COVID-19 scars could be among the worst in the world.
  • It expects India’s growth equilibrium to worsen substantially over the medium term, with potential growth averaging just 4.5% over 2020-2025, from its pre-pandemic projection of 6.5%.
  • The fiscal deficit is also expected to widen 7% of GDP in 2020-21.

3. Scottish Author Douglas Stuart wins 2020 Booker Prize

  • Scottish writer Douglas Stuart has won the 2020 Booker Prize for Fiction.
  • He has been awarded for his debut novel, “Shuggie Bain”. The 44-year-old Stuart is only the second Scot to have won the prestigious literary prize.
  • The Booker Prize for Fiction, (formerly known as the Booker–McConnell Prize (1969–2001) and the Man Booker Prize (2002–2019)), is a literary prize awarded each year for the best original novel written in the English language and published in the United Kingdom. It carries £50,000 prize ($66,000).

4. North Police Station in Kohima receives ISO certification

  • The North Police Station in Kohima was awarded ISO 9001:2015 certification for Quality Management System.
  • It is the first government agency of the state that has received such recognition.
  • The ISO certificate helps to ensure that the police personnel routinely evaluates its working and implement remedial measures, as and when required.
  • The entire process of certification was completed within 30 days and was initiated by the Kohima Police.
  • The process involves an online application, documentation, upgrading the existing facilities, online auditing and other elements.
  • Kohima police informed that their sole motive was to improve the quality of public service and to create a more visitor-friendly environment.
  • To meet the specified parameters, the police station streamlined the process of character/passport verification and the system of filing and record keeping.
  • It further upgraded the infrastructure of the police station and disposal of various complaints have been made time-bound.

5. 30th India-Thai Coordinated Patrol (CORPAT)

  • The 30th edition of India-Thailand Coordinated Patrol (Indo-Thai CORPAT) was held between the Indian Navy and the Royal Thai Navy.
  • The Indian Naval Ship (INS) Karmuk, an indigenously built Missile Corvette and Thailand Ship (HTMS) Kraburi, a Chao Phraya Class Frigate along with Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft from both the navies participated in the CORPAT.
  • The two navies have been carrying out CORPAT along their International Maritime Boundary Line twice a year since 2005 to enhance bilateral ties and maritime cooperation.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Prime Minister of Thailand: Prayut Chan-o-cha.
  • Thailand Capital: Bangkok.
  • Thailand Currency: Thai baht.

6. GoI & NDB sign MoU for USD 500 Million for Public Transport System in NCR

  • The Government of India and the New Development Bank(NDB) have signed a loan agreement for lending USD 500 million for the ‘Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut Regional Rapid Transit System Project’.
  • This Regional Rapid Transit System provide fast, reliable, safe and comfortable public transport system in the National Capital Region (NCR).
  • The fast transit system will support in achieving the goal of sustainable urban development in the NCR region including the National Capital Territory of Delhi.
  • The environment friendly and very low emission RRTS will carry many times more people at high speed (average speed 100 kmph) while occupying just 3 m space on land thus reducing congestion on the roads.
  • Seamless high-speed connectivity will result in balanced economic development across the Region leading to economic benefits to all strata of society and many nodes of development rather than all economic activity happening at one place.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • New Development Bank Headquarters location: Shanghai, China.
  • President of the New Development Bank: Marcos Troyjo.

7. World Fisheries Day: 21 November

  • World Fisheries Day is celebrated on 21 November every year throughout the world by the fisherfolk communities.
  • It highlights the importance of healthy oceans ecosystems and to ensure sustainable stocks of fisheries in the world.
  • 2020 is the fourth World Fisheries Day. The World Fisheries Day helps in highlighting the critical importance to human lives, of water and the lives it sustains, both in and out of water.
  • Water forms a continuum, whether contained in rivers, lakes, and ocean. Fishing communities worldwide celebrate this day through rallies, workshops, public meetings, cultural programs, dramas, exhibition, music show, and demonstrations to highlight the importance of maintaining the world’s fisheries.

8. World Television Day: 21 November

  • World Television Day is observed on 21 November every year. The day is observed to acknowledge the role of broadcast media.
  • On this day, the journalists, writers, bloggers, and others who are associated with the medium promote the role of television in communication and globalization.
  • The 21 November was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in December 1996, because the first World Television Forum was held in 1996.

9. National Newborn Week 2020

  • In India, the National Newborn Week 2020 is observed every year from 15 to 21 November.
  • Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Dr Harsh Vardhan has chaired an event to mark the National Newborn Week 2020.
  • The main purpose of the week is to reinforce the importance of newborn health as a key priority area of the health sector and reduce the infant mortality rate by improving healthcare conditions for babies in the neonatal period.
  • The theme of National Newborn Week 2020 is ‘Quality, Equity, Dignity for every newborn at every health facility and everywhere’.

10. Mastercard & USAID Partners to launch “Project Kirana”

  • Mastercard and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) have collaborated under Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP) to launch ‘Project Kirana’ in India, to help women entrepreneurs grow and thrive.
  • Project Kirana is a two-year programme, and initially, it will be rolled out in select cities of Uttar Pradesh, including Lucknow, Kanpur and Varanasi. The programme will be implemented by DAI Digital Frontiers and ACCESS Development Services.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Mastercard Headquarters: New York, United States.
  • Mastercard President: Michael Miebach.
  • Mastercard Chief Executive Officer(CEO): Ajay Banga(Michael Miebach will take over as CEO by January 2021).

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