Current Affairs Current Affairs May 2020

  Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) has announced the launch of the Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana, which is a social security scheme for senior citizens. This plan starts from May 26 for three financial years up to March 31, 2023. LIC is solely authorised to work this scheme, which works as a Non-Linked, Non-Participating, Pension Scheme subsidised by the Centre. The policy term is of 10 years and for policies sold during the first financial year up to March 31, 2021, the scheme will provide an assured rate of return of 7.40 per cent once a year payable monthly (which is like 7.66 per cent per annum) for the whole duration of 10 years.

 Ministry of Minority Affairs flagship programme ‘Hunar Haat’ will restart from September 2020 with the theme of “Local to Global”. This Platform is for artisans and craftsmen from various parts of the country to showcase their art and craft. This platform has provided employment and employment opportunities to more than five lakh Indian artisans, craftsmen, culinary experts and other people associated with them in the last five years. Hunar Haat provides market and opportunity to master artisans and craftsmen from remote areas of the country, has become a credible brand of rare exquisite indigenous handmade products. There will be a special “Jaan Bhi, Jahaan Bhi” pavilion to create health awareness among the people with the theme of “Say no to panic, yes to precautions”.

 Union Minister for Road Transport, Nitin Gadkari has inaugurated the 440 metre-long tunnel as part of the Chardham Connectivity Project in Chamba. The tunnel will significantly reduce the time taken by travellers on the Rishikesh-Dharasu and Gangotri stretch of the Chardham Highway (NH 94). Under the Chardham Project costing around 12 thousand crore rupees approximately 889 Kilometres of Highway Construction is to be done. BRO has been entrusted for construction of 250 Kilometre-stretch leading to holy shrine Gangotri and Badrinath. The tunnel has been developed by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO). 

 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) E-conclave was chaired by the Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh. The virtual conference of MSMEs E-conclave was organised jointly by the Department of Defence Production, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers (SIDM). The E-conclave was held with the theme ‘Business Continuity for MSMEs in Defence & Aerospace Sector’. The conclave featured the participation of more than 800 Defence MSMEs units. During the conclave, Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh emphasized and applauded the role played by Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers (SIDM) and other Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in India’s fight against global COVID-19 pandemic.

 REC Limited has partnered with TajSATS, a joint venture of IHCL and SATS Ltd, to provide nutritious meals to frontline healthcare workers. Both entities are leading the mission to provide meals to the medical staff in key government hospitals along with poor daily wage labourers across the nation. Over 18,000 meals are planned to be delivered in New Delhi through this initiative. REC Limited is a Navratna NBFC which has distributed more than 4.58 lacs Kilograms of food grains, 1.26 lac meal packets, 9600 litres of sanitizers, 3400 PPE kits and 83000 masks across the nation amid the nationwide lockdown due to COVID-19 pandemic.

 American tennis player Jamie Hampton has proclaimed that she is taking retirement from the professional tennis. Former World Top 25 player played her last official match 6 yrs ago when she was ranked 24th in the world. The right hander player then suffered numerous injuries and was unable to play against Venus Williams in the semi finals of ASB Classic in Auckland in 2014. Jamie Hampton has also reached one WTA doubles final alongside Anna Tatishvili where they finished as runners-up. She won five International Tennis Federation titles during her professional tennis career.

 Manipur’s “Khudol” has been listed among the top 10 global initiatives for an inclusive fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. The listing of the initiative among the top 10 global initiatives was done by the United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth. “Khudol” initiative was launched by an Imphal-based NGO “Ya_All”. Food, health and hygiene requirements of the LGBTQI+ community, people living with HIV, daily-wage earners, children and adolescents is being ensured through the initiative “Khudol”. It is a crowdfunded initiative which has mobilised a network of 100 volunteers, to fulfill basic needs of around 2,000 families and individuals.

 Indian Navy has formed “NavRakshak” PPE kit with innovative breathable fabric material. This PPE kit provides comfort to healthcare workers working against COVID-19 pandemic wearing multi-layered coverall PPE treating patients within the hot and humid condition for quite 12 hours. The ability of the material to permit water vapour to undergo and stop the water from entering is understood as Breathability. This PPE kit made by Surgeon Lieutenant Commander Arnab Ghosh from Naval Medical Specialist of Innovation Cell, Institute of Naval Medicine in Mumbai. The comfort properties of the material depend on their ability to transmit the water and vapour from the body and preventing the buildup of liquid on the skin. The PPE passed the Synthetic blood penetration resistance test with 6/6 (Government of India mandates minimum 3/6 and above as per ISO 16603 standard ) pressure certified for mass production and to be used in clinical COVID-19 situations.

 FICCI Ladies Organization (FLO) has appointed Assam-based entrepreneur Jahnabi Phookan as its National President. She has taken over from the outgoing National President Harjinder Kaur Talwar as the 37th National President of FLO, the women wing of the leading industry chamber of the country. As a National President, Jahnabi Phookan will work towards empowering women with entrepreneurship capabilities and professional excellence. Her efforts would aim to enable women to take up new challenges and maximise the opportunities in the new normal post COVID-19. FICCI FLO works towards women’s economic empowerment and represents over 8,000 women entrepreneurs and professionals across 17 chapters nationally. It also works towards promoting equal opportunities for women.

 Indian economist Abhas Jha has been appointed as World Bank’s Practice Manager for Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management for South Asia. In his capacity, Jha will be responsible to nurture, lead, inspire and position a team of highly qualified professionals to provide the best solutions for South Asian countries. He will motivate and support the South Asia region (SAR) Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change team to connect and unite across Global Practice boundaries. During his tenure as World Bank’s Practice Manager for Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management for South Asia, Abhas Jha will also work along with other Practice Managers, Global Leads as well as the Global Solutions Groups to incubate, pilot and scale-up innovative and high-quality development solutions. They will together promote the generation as well as the flow of global knowledge to serve South Asian countries.

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