Current Affairs- 20thAugust

Science and Technology

Geological Survey of India Mobile App

Geological Survey of India Mobile App
  • Geological Survey of India, the 170-year old premier Geological Institution under the Ministry of Mines has decided to make itself accessible to the masses and make its presence felt digitally by launching the GSI Mobile App (Beta Version) in the year 2020 and upgrading it periodically.
  • Through the App , people will become more enlightened about various facets of GSI activities .It is also in line with the Digital India campaign initiated by the Central Government .
  • The App is divided into various sections where it talks about the legacy of GSI, the in-house publications of the organisation, various case studies on different missions of GSI, the picture gallery etc.

DCGI approves DNA-based vaccine ZyCoV-D for Emergency Use

DCGI approves DNA-based vaccine ZyCoV-D for Emergency Use
  • Zydus Cadila has received approval for Emergency Use Authorization from the Drug Controller General of India for ZyCoV-D vaccine. Ministry of Science and Technology in a statement said that it is the world’s first and India’s indigenously developed DNA-based vaccine for COVID-19 to be administered in humans including children and adults 12 years and above
  • It has been developed in partnership with the Department of Biotechnology under the Mission COVID Suraksha and implemented by Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council, BIRAC.

National

Tourism Ministry signed MOU with MakeMyTrip, Ibibo to boost tourism industry

Tourism Ministry signed MOU with MakeMyTrip, Ibibo to boost tourism industry
  • The Ministry of Tourism has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with MakeMyTrip (India) Private Limited and Ibibo Group Private Limited as part of its ongoing efforts to strengthen the hospitality and tourism industry in the aftermath of the coronavisrus pandemic, a statement said in Wednesday.
  • The Ministry of Tourism has already signed MoUs with EaseMyTrip, Cleartrip and Yatra.com.
  • “The primary objective of this MoU is to provide an extensive visibility to accommodation units, which have self-certified themselves on SAATHI (System for Assessment, Awareness and Training for the Hospitality Industry) on the OTA platform.

Govt appoints Shanti Lal Jain as MD and CEO of Indian Bank for 3 years

Govt appoints Shanti Lal Jain as MD and CEO of Indian Bank for 3 years
  • The Appointment Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC) has appointed Shanti Lal Jain as the Managing Director (MD) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of lndian Bank for a period of three years.
  • Jain is presently the Executive Director of Bank of Baroda. His tenure of three years would start from Sep 1, and will be extendable for another two years or until attaining the age of superannuation, whichever is earlier.
  • Jain will replace Padmaja Chunduru whose term at the public sector bank would end on August 31.

Ayushmann Khurrana joins UNICEF’s initiative to protect children from cyberbullying

Ayushmann Khurrana joins UNICEF’s initiative to protect children from cyberbullying
  • Bollywood actor and singer Ayushmann Khurrana has been appointed as UNICEF India’s Celebrity Advocate for their global campaign EVAC (Ending Violence Against Children), reported news agency ANI. Through the initiative, the Vicky Donor star aims at building awareness on a national level about online safety for Indian children. Khurrana believes in “ending violence against children everywhere” and “equip children and adolescents with knowledge and digital tools” to help them participate actively in the digital society.
  • Talking about the new partnership, Khurrana stated, “The partnership between Facebook and UNICEF is a powerful example of stakeholders from diverse fields and sectors coming together to protect children and their rights

International

Cabinet approves MoU between India and US in the field of Geology

Cabinet approves MoU between India and US in the field of Geology
  • Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for signing the Memorandum of Understanding between Geological Survey of India (GSI), Ministry of Mines, the Government of the Republic of India, and the Florida International University (FIU) board of trustees on behalf of its Department of Earth and Environment, College of Arts, Sciences and Education, United States of America on cooperation in field of Geology.
  • The MoU will provide an institutional mechanism between Geological Survey of India (GSI) and the Florida International University (FIU) on cooperation in the field of Geology.

India, Australia sign document to boost naval ties

India, Australia sign document to boost naval ties
  • Chiefs of the Indian and Australian navies on Wednesday signed a guidance document to streamline interaction between the two forces at various levels.
  • The Navy said in a statement that the signing ceremony for the ‘Joint Guidance for the Australia-India Navy to Navy Relationship’ document was held via videconference between Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh, and Admiral Michael J Noonan, Chief of Navy, Australian Navy.
  • The document is aligned to the ‘2020 Comprehensive Strategic Partnership’ agreed to by prime ministers of the two nations, and aims to ensure a shared approached to regional and global security challenges, the Navy said.

UN Secretary General again calls for immediate ceasefire in Ethiopian region of Tigray

UN Secretary General again calls for immediate ceasefire in Ethiopian region of Tigray
  • The United Nations Secretary General has again called for an immediate ceasefire in the Ethiopian region of Tigray, where government forces and rebel fighters have been locked in conflict since November.
  • António Guterres described the humanitarian conditions in Tigray as hellish and said aid agencies needed unrestricted access.
  • He condemned the use of sexual violence against women in Ethiopia as a weapon of war.
  • Speaking to reporters in New York, Mr. Guterres said there could be no military resolution to the fighting, which has spread to neighbouring states.

Book and Author

“OPERATION KHUKRI” by Major General Rajpal Punia & Ms Damini Punia

“OPERATION KHUKRI” by Major General Rajpal Punia & Ms Damini Punia
  • CDS General Bipin Rawat was presented a book “OPERATION KHUKRI” by authors Major General Rajpal Punia & Ms Damini Punia. The book highlights the Indian Army’s successful rescue mission in Sierra Leone as part of the United Nations. The year was 2000, Sierra Leone, in West Africa, had been ravaged by years of civil strife. With the intervention of the United Nations, two companies of the Indian Army were deployed in Kailahun as part of a United Nations peacekeeping mission.
  • The book is published by the Penguin Random House India (PRHI).

Days and Dates

World Mosquito Day: 20th August

World Mosquito Day: 20th August
  • Every year, August 20 is observed as the World Mosquito Day to raise awareness about the illness and disease caused by mosquitos.
  • The mosquito is possibly the only predator in human history to have thrived through millennia, bringing death and destruction through a variety of vector-borne illness, particularly malaria.
  • This year’s theme for World Mosquito Day has been to reach the zero malaria target and other diseases where mosquitos are the carriers or vectors. According to a survey of the world’s deadliest animals, mosquitoes surprisingly topped the list.

Other Important Affairs

  • An Outstanding Scientist and Programme Director U. Raja Babu has been appointed as Director of the Hyderabad-based Research Centre Imarat (RCI). RCI is the premier avionics laboratory of Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Missile Complex of DRDO in Hyderabad. Raja Babu is renowned for his significant contribution as Programme Director at RCI.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of multiple projects in Somnath, Gujarat today via video conferencing.
  • Every year India observes Sadbhavana Diwas on August 20 to commemorate the birth anniversary of late erstwhile Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi. This year on 20th August 2021, we are going to celebrate the 77th birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.
  • Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will inaugurate the capital”s first smog tower at Cannaught Place on August 23, Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai said on Thursday. The over 20-metre-tall structure, being set up to improve air quality in a radius of around 1 km, will “operate at full capacity” after the monsoon season, the minister told reporters.