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Daily G.K. - Top Stories

02 Jun 2020

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

Hong Kong Bans Tiananmen Vigil for First Time in 30 Years

  • Hong Kong police banned an upcoming vigil marking the Tiananmen crackdown anniversary citing the COVID-19 pandemic, the first time the gathering has been halted in three decades.
  • The candlelight June 4 vigil usually attracts huge crowds and is the only place on Chinese soil where such a major commemoration of the anniversary is still allowed.
  • The Tiananmen Square protests or the Tiananmen Square Incident, commonly known as the June Fourth Incident, were student-led demonstrations held in Tiananmen Square in Beijing during 1989. The popular national movement inspired by the Beijing protests is sometimes called the '89 Democracy Movement.
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ENVIRONMENT

Millipede From Scotland is World's Oldest-Known Land Animal

  • A fossilized millipede-like creature discovered in Scotland may represent the oldest-known land animal, a humble pioneer of terrestrial living 425 million years ago that helped pave the way for the throngs that would eventually inhabit Earth's dry parts.
  • Researchers said the fossil of the Silurian Period creature, called Kampecaris obanensis and unearthed on the island of Kerrera in the Scottish Inner Hebrides, inhabited a lakeside environment and likely ate decomposing plants.
  • Fossils of the oldest-known plant with a stem, called Cooksonia, were found in the same ancient lake region as Kampecaris.
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BUSINESS AND ECONOMY

Yes Bank Acquires 24.19% Stake in Dish TV

  • Yes Bank Ltd acquired a 24.19% stake in direct-to-home service provider, Dish TV India Ltd, by invoking pledges against 44.53 equity shares kept as collateral with the private lender for a loan.
  • This is the fifth instance in the past one year that Yes Bank has acquired majority stake in a non-banking businesses simply due to invocation of pledge against shares of a company that had availed loans from the bank and later failed to repay the dues.
  • According to data from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), the DTH market in the country is dominated by Dish TV (40%), followed by Tata Sky (25%) and Airtel TV (22%).

Indian Energy Exchange Launches Real-Time Electricity Market

  • Energy trading platform Indian Energy Exchange launched the real-time electricity market (RTM) on its platform, a move that will help utilities buy and sell power just an hour before the requirement.
  • The RTM enables consumers, including distribution companies (discoms) and captive users, to buy power on exchanges just an hour before delivery.
  • The real time market is an endeavour by the regulator, CERC, to make the power market dynamic by enabling trade in electricity through half-hourly auctions, Indian Energy Exchange (IEX) said in a regulatory filing.
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SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

PM Modi launches CHAMPIONS Portal

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched the technology platform CHAMPIONS which stands for Creation and Harmonious Application of recent Processes for Increasing the Output and National Strength.
  • The portal is essential for creating the smaller units big by solving their grievances, encouraging, supporting, helping and handholding.
  • It is a real one-stop-shop solution of MSME Ministry.
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SPORTS

SAI to Launch Khelo India e-Pathshala

  • The Sports Authority of India (SAI) is all set to launch Khelo India e-Pathshala in association with National Sports Federations (NSF) from June 1, 2020 with an aim to provide first-ever national-level open online coaching and education programme for grassroot-level athletes.
  • Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju and Union Minister of Tribal Affairs and Archery Association of India president Arjun Munda inaugrated the programme through a webinar.
  • The programme will cover 21 sporting disciplines, including, athletics, archery, boxing, cycling, fencing, football, gymnastics, hockey, judo, kayaking & canoeing, kabaddi, para games, rowing, shooting, taekwondo, table tennis, Volleyball, weightlifting, wrestling and wushu.
  • The e-learning programme will feature eminent athletes demonstrating technical skills and interacting with young athletes about techniques to improve their overall game.
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NATIONAL AFFAIRS

India Launches National AI Portal for all to Promote AI Development in the Count

  • The Indian government announced the National Artificial Intelligence (AI) Portal, developed jointly by the National e-Governance Division of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and the National Association of Software and Service Companies (Nasscom). 
  • The portal is meant to work as a "one stop digital platform" for all AI related developments in India. 
  • The minister also announced the Responsible AI for Youth Programme, which is aimed at imparting education and skills in AI to students in government schools. 

Three More States Included in One Nation One Ration Card Scheme

  • Three more states have been included in One Nation, One Ration Card scheme. These are Odisha, Sikkim and Mizoram. Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan announced the inclusion of these states in the scheme on Integrated Management of Public Distribution System.
  • Under this system, nation-wide portability of the benefits under National Food Security Act through One Nation, One Ration Card plan is implemented to enable the NFSA ration card holders to lift their entitled quota of subsidized food grains from any e-PoS enabled Fair Price Shop of their choice anywhere in the country, by using the existing and same ration card after Aadhaar authentication.
  • The facility is enabled in 17 States and UTs so far. 
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DEFENCE

Lt. Gen. Manoj Pande Took over as the 15th Commander-in-Chief of the Andaman and Nicobar Command

  • Lieutenant General Manoj Pande assumed charge as the 15th Commander-in-Chief of the Andaman & Nicobar Command (CLINICIAN) on 1 June 2020.
  • He replaced Lieutenant General Podali Shankar Rajeshwar PVSM, AVSM, VSM, ADC. Shankar Rajeshwar was the 14th CINCAN and retired from service on 31 May 2020.
  •  He had a good experience of 37 years of distinguished service. He has taken an active part in Operation Vijay and Parakram.
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PERSONS IN NEWS

American Sprinter Bobby Morrow Passed Away at 84

  • American Sprinter, the San Benito Buller, Bobby Morrow, one of the four men (Jesse Owens(1936), Carl Lewis(1984), Usain Bolt(2012 & 2016)) to win three events at a single game (100m, 200m and 4x100m relay) died of natural causes at the age of 84 in his home in San Benito, Texas. He was born in October 1935, in Harlingen, Texas.
  • He won three gold medals for 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay in the 1956 Olympic in Melbourne.
  • He was named Sportsman of the year 1956 by the Sports Illustrated and he set 11 ratified world records during his entire career.

Pradip Kumar Tripathi takes charge as Steel Secretary

  • Senior IAS officer Pradip Kumar Tripathi took over the charge as Secretary in the Ministry of Steel.
  • He is an IAS officer of 1987 batch of Jammu and Kashmir (JK) cadre.
  • Mr. Tripathi succeeds Binoy Kumar, who superannuated on May 31, 2020.

RK Chaturvedi Assumed Charge as Secretary, Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals

  • RK Chaturvedi assumed charge as Secretary in the Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, Government of India. Chaturvedi has replaced P. Raghavendra Rao who superannuated on 31 May,  2020.
  • RK Chaturvedi is a 1987-batch Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer of Madhya Pradesh cadre.
  • Prior to this, he served as an Additional Secretary and Financial Advisor in the Ministry of Culture.
  • He has worked as Chairman of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and as DG in the National Skill Development Authority (NSDA).
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DAYS AND EVENTS

International Sex Workers Day

  • International Whores' Day or International Sex Workers Day is observed annually on June 2 of each year, honours sex workers and recognises their often exploited working conditions.
  • The event commemorates the occupation of Église Saint-Nizier in Lyon by more than a hundred sex workers on June 2, 1975 to draw attention to their inhumane working conditions.

6th Telangana Formation Day

  • Every year on June 2 is observed as Telangana Formation Day as this is the day when the Telangana state was officially formed. The Government of India declared this historic day for the Telangana, the youngest state in India in 2014.
  • In February 2014, Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 bill was passed by the Parliament of India for the formation of Telangana state comprising ten districts from north-western Andhra Pradesh.
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GOVERNMENT POLICIES AND SCHEMES

GoI Launches PM SVANidhi Scheme

  • On June 1, 2020, Government of India launched the Pradhan Mantri SVANidhi Scheme for street vendors. The Union cabinet has cleared the credit amount for the scheme as well.
  • The scheme is aimed at enabling the street vendors to resume their livelihoods that have been adversely affected due to COVID-19 lockdown.
  • Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry launched the scheme in pursuance of the announcement made by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
  • The PM SVANidhi or PM Street Vendors Atmanirbhar Nidhi is a credit facility scheme that will help more than 50 lakh urban and rural street vendors.
  • The scheme will help the street vendors restart their livelihoods. Under the scheme, Rs 10,000 of credit is to be provided to street vendors restart their livelihoods. 

Union Cabinet Approves Changes in Definition of MSMEs

  • The Narendra Modi government announced policy changes for the MSME sector as part of the Atmanirbhar Bharat package.
  • In the first Cabinet meeting in the second year of the Narendra Modi government, it approved changes to the definition of MSMEs.
  • According to the new definitions, MSMEs with an investment of Rs 1 cr and turnover of Rs 5 cr will be classified as micro-units.
  • Units with an investment of Rs 10 cr and turnover of Rs 50 cr will be classified as small units while those with an investment of Rs 50 cr and turnover of Rs 250 cr will be classified as medium units.
  • Moreover, exports will not be excluded from the turnover cap.
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GENDER/ HEALTH/ EDUCATION

R. Sreelekha Set to be the State's First Woman DGP

  • Ms. Sreelekha, belonging to the 1987 batch, is the first woman officer to be elevated as a DGP.
  • The Cabinet elevated Additional Directors General of Police Sankar Reddy and R. Sreelekha to the post of Director Generals of Police.
  • The government has posted Ms. Sreelekha, the first woman IPS officer in the State, as the Director General, Fire and Rescue Department.
  • Ms. Sreelekha, belonging to the 1987 batch, is the first woman officer to be elevated as a DGP.
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