Daily Current Affairs, 05th March 2020 - VISION

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Thursday, March 05, 2020

Daily Current Affairs, 05th March 2020

1) 35th edition of AAHAR, Food and Hospitality fair, began in New Delhi
•The 35th edition of AAHAR – the Food and Hospitality fair began in New Delhi. This fair is being organized by India Trade Promotion Organisation, ITPO, with support of the Ministry of Food Processing Industries, Agriculture and Processed Food Products Development Authority and several apex industry associations.

•This year, the fair will feature a wide range of food products, machinery, hospitality, Food and Beverage Equipment and Decoration items, and Confectionery items from over 750 participants from India and overseas.

•In the foreign category, the fair will witness participation from countries, including Hong Kong, Israel, Indonesia, Japan, Poland, Russia, Switzerland, UK and UAE. The event will also offer an insight into operational and food safety concerns and innovations to become energy-efficient, finding budget-friendly raw materials boosting productivity, while still aiming for greater profitability.

2) CM Yogi Adityanath inaugurates projects worth Rs 2821 cr in Noida
•Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath inaugurated and laid foundation stones for 23 development projects worth Rs 2,821 crore at Gautam Buddh Nagar in Noida on 3rd March 2020. Among the 23 projects, 13 projects were inaugurated at the total worth of Rs 1,452 crore, while foundation stones were laid for 10 projects worth Rs 1,369 crore.

The various project setting up:

•India’s biggest multi-level parking with space for 7,000 vehicles at Sector 38A, Rs 500 crore.

•Underground parking for 276 cars and 42 two-wheelers at Sector 5, Rs 32.25 crore.

•A government hospital in Sector 39, Rs 344 crore.

•Three power substations at Sector 148, Rs 366 crore.

•Two power substations at Sector 38A, Rs 98.45 crore and Rs 10 crore.

•A foot-over bridge at Sector 145 metro station (Rs 10.81 crore), another in Sector 62 (Rs 5 crore), one between Sector 71 and 72 (Rs 5 crore) and four pink toilets in sectors 16, 15, 28 and 74 (altogether costing Rs 0.76 crore).

3) Student Health Card scheme for school children launched in J&K
•A “Student Health Card” scheme has been launched in the Union Territory Jammu and Kashmir. Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir, Girish Chander Murmu launched the “Student Health Card” scheme to check the malnutrition in school going children. This scheme aims to ensure good health of every school going children. According to the “Student Health Card” scheme, the school going children will undergo a regular checkup so that malnutrition can be prevented.

•The “Student Health Card” scheme was launched during the programme which was organised by Directorate of Mid Day Meal, School Education Department in cooperation with the National Health Mission.

4) Luxembourg becomes 1st country to make public transport free
•Luxembourg, the 7th smallest country in Europe, has been made public transport free to reduce traffic pressure on the road. It becomes the 1st country in the world to make public transport free. It abolished fares for trains, trams and buses. The main reason is to have a better quality of mobility, and then the side reason is clearly also environmental issues.

•All standard-class journeys on public transport in the tiny and wealthy European country are now free of charge, compared to an annual pass worth 440 euros ($485) before. Travellers can still pay for first-class, at a cost of 660 euros a year.

•Luxembourg has just over 600,000 inhabitants, but 214,000 more travel in for work every day from neighbouring Germany, Belgium and France, causing heavy traffic jams as the majority of workers commute by car. More than half of Luxembourg’s greenhouse gas emissions come from transport. It is expected that more than 65% of people in Luxembourg use their car to go to work in 2025, down from 73% in 2017.

5) Ajay Bhushan Pandey becomes new Finance Secretary
Government of India appointed the current Revenue Secretary Ajay Bhushan Pandey as the new Finance Secretary. Pandey replaces current Finance Secretary Rajiv Kumar. The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment. He had earlier worked as chief executive officer of Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the organization behind the Aadhaar.

The senior-most bureaucrat among all secretaries in the Finance Ministry is designated as the finance secretary.

•Atanu Chakraborty, a 1985 batch IAS officer of Gujarat cadre, is present secretary, Department of Economic Affairs. The new one rupee notes will have his bilingual signature.

•Tuhin Kant Pandey, a 1987 batch IAS officer of Odisha cadre, is secretary of the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management.

•T V Somanathan, a 1987 batch IAS officer from Tamil Nadu cadre, is secretary, Department of Expenditure.

•Debasish Panda is financial services secretary.

6) Sanjay Kumar Panda becomes India’s next Ambassador to Turkey
•The Ministry of External Affairs announced Senior diplomat Sanjay Kumar Panda has been appointed as India’s Ambassador to Turkey. He will succeed Sanjay Bhattacharya. He is a 1991 Indian Foreign Service officer, is presently Consul General, Consulate General of India, San Francisco. He is appointed to the post when India- Turkey relations are under strain.

7) Sunil Joshi becomes new chairman of BCCI’s selection committee
•Former Indian cricketer Sunil Joshi becomes the new chairman of the national selection panel by the BCCI’s Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) in Mumbai. The CAC also select former Indian cricketer Harvinder Singh for a place in the five-member group. The CAC, comprising Madan Lal, RP Singh and Sulakshana Naik, select the two selectors with Joshi replacing South Zone representative MSK Prasad. Harvinder Singh was chosen from the railway zone and replaces Gagan Khoda in the 5 member panel. The CAC will review the panel’s performance after one year and make recommendations accordingly.

8) Cabinet approves merger of 10 PSBs into 4 from 1st April 2020
•According to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, the exercise of consolidation of 10 public sector banks (PSBs) into four is on course and the merger will come into effect from the new financial year 1st April 2020. The Union Cabinet has given a go-ahead for the merger proposal. The Central government has been in regular touch with these banks. Finance Minister stated that the merger of Public Sector Banks’ merger is on course and decisions have already been taken by the respective bank boards.

•In the biggest consolidation exercise in the banking sector, the union government in August 2019 had announced four major mergers of public sector banks, bringing down their total number to 12 from 27 in 2017.

As per the plan, PSBs will be merged into:-

1. United Bank of India and Oriental Bank of Commerce will be merged with Punjab National Bank
2. Syndicate Bank will be merged with Canara Bank
3. Allahabad Bank will be amalgamated with Indian Bank
4. Andhra Bank and Corporation Bank will be consolidated with Union Bank of India

•The Plan had been first publicly mooted in December 2018 when Central Bank of India (RBI) stated that India could create some global banking majors if the then ongoing mergers of some state-owned banks achieve the desired impact of creating stronger and well-capitalized lenders of international level.

•In 2019, Mumbai based Dena Bank and Bengaluru based Vijaya Bank were merged with Bank of Baroda. Prior to this, the central government had merged five associate banks of State Bank of India and Bharatiya Mahila Bank with the State Bank of India effective from 1st April 2017.

9) 4th Edition of the Women Transforming India Awards 2019
•The fourth edition of the Women Transforming India Awards 2019 will be organised on the occasion of International Women’s Day i.e. on 8 March 2020. The Women Transforming India Awards 2019 will be organised by the Women Entrepreneurship Platform of the NITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India). The WTI awards will be conferred by the Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh to the exceptional women change makers from across India.

10) Environmental activist Jadav Payeng named Commonwealth Points of Light Award
•Assam’s Environmental activist Jadav Payeng, popularly called the ‘Forest Man of India’, was named as the 128th Commonwealth Points of Light Award winner. Queen Elizabeth II has honoured Payeng for his exceptional voluntary service to environmental conservation.

•The British Deputy High Commissioner in Kolkata Nick Low would felicitate Payeng on March 11. He also received the Karmayogi Award for 2020 at New Delhi. He has worked for years to transform the sandbar into a home to animals and birds of varied species, named ‘Molai forest’ after him.

•President George H. W. Bush first established the award in 1990. He was inaugurated as the forty-first President in 1989. The Commonwealth Points of Light award is given to thank inspirational volunteers across the 53 Commonwealth nations.