17th March 2020 – Current Affairs
Stuff Reporter | 20-03-18

? India observes National Vaccination Day every year on 16th March. The day is also known as National Immunization Day.

? Indian E-commerce company Flipkart has tied up with Aegon Life Insurance to sell comprehensive insurance solutions for customers. The tie up targets those customers who are seeking instant digital policies with a sum assured of up to Rs 10 lakh. These life insurance policies do not need medical tests or paperwork as it is an instant life insurance cover, with digital policy as its core value proposition.

? World Consumer Rights Day is celebrated globally on March 15 every year.

? “An Extraordinary Life: A biography of Manohar Parrikar” is a book on the life of the former defence minister and Goa chief minister Manohar Parrikar. The book is co-authored by veteran journalists Sadguru Patil and Mayabhushan Nagvenkar. The book titled “An Extraordinary Life: A biography of Manohar Parrikar” will be published by publishing house Penguin Random House India.

? The government has set up a 25-member development council for pulp, paper and allied industries, to spur growth of the sector. J K Paper Ltd President A S Mehta will be the chairman of the council.

? Niue has become the world’s first whole country recognised as a ‘Dark Sky Place’ by the International Dark-Sky Association’s (IDA), which has approved the island’s application for the protection of its sky, land and sea.

? Nita Ambani, the owner of Mumbai Indians cricket team franchise, has been named in the list of 10 most influential women in sports for 2020 alongside likes of tennis superstar Serena Williams and gymnast Simone Biles.

? A Crime Multi Agency Centre (Cri-MAC) which aims to share information between various police forces on heinous crimes was launched.

? Retail inflation dropped for the first time after six months in February, easing to 6.58 per cent as prices of vegetables and other kitchen items cooled, government data showed.

? The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved a four per cent hike in dearness allowance (DA) for central government employees and Dearness Relief (DR) to pensioners with effect from January 1, 2020. This is over the existing rate of 17 per cent of the Basic Pay/Pension.

? The UK will levy the additional 2% tax called the ‘Digital Services Tax’ on technology firms from April 1, which has been opposed by US.

? President Ram Nath Kovind has nominated former Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi to the Rajya Sabha on March 16, 2020. Currently, there are 11 nominated members in the upper house of the Parliament. One seat was left vacant due to the retirement of senior lawyer KTS Tulsi.

? The Supreme Court on March 17, 2020 allowed women officers to take up permanent commission in the Indian Navy, stating that men and women officers should be treated equally.

? The Union Cabinet has approved 4 percent increase in dearness allowances (DA) for government employees and pensioners to 21 percent. This will benefit over 1.13 crore people and come into effect retrospectively from 1st January 2020.

? The Uttar Pradesh state government has launched Kaushal Satrang Yojana to develop the skilled manpower and to provide more employment opportunities. UP Government has sanctioned Rs. 100 crore for this scheme.

? India’s second-largest national oil explorer, Oil India Limited (OIL) has inked the Crude Oil Sales Agreement (COSA) with Numaligarh Refinery. The agreement has been signed by the two entities for sale and purchase of crude oil. The COSA agreement is expected to streamline sale and purchase transactions of crude oil which will be produced from fields in the North East India. The COSA agreement will be effective for a term of five years, i.e. from 1 April, 2020 to 31 March 2025.

? India and Nepal have signed a MoU to construct three school buildings in Darchula, Dhanusha and Kapilavastu districts. India and Nepal have been sharing cultural, religious and social relations for a long time.

? The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) inked a deal with a disability support NGO Aditya Mehta Foundation, to train its troops, who lost their limbs in operations, in various skills including cyber operations, artificial intelligence and para-sports.

? The famous annual Chaitra Jatra festival was scheduled to be held on March 17, 2020 at Tara Tarini hill temple in Odisha. Now, it has been cancelled as a preventive measure to stop the spread of COVID-19 virus.

? The Election Commission of India (ECI) has been appointed Hirdesh Kumar as the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory. He will replace Shailendra Kumar with effect from the date he assumes charge. Hridesh Kumar is a 1999 batch IAS officer & presently serving as Commissioner Secretary in the School Education Department of J&K.

? The United States has initiated the first human trial of COVID-19 vaccine in Seattle. The trial will be carried out on 45 healthy adult volunteers, aged between 18 to 55 years, across approximately 6 weeks. The first volunteer received the vaccine on March 16.

? Bangladesh celebrated the birth centenary of its founder, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, on March 17, 2020. He was the first President of the nation and later, he served as the Prime Minister from April 17, 1971 till his assassination on August 15, 1975.

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