Current Affairs Daily Digest – March 12 2020
1. Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020 introduced in Lok Sabha
The Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020, was introduced in the Lok Sabha on 12 March. The Bill was introduced by the Union Shipping Minister Mansukh Mandaviya.
Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020:
- The Bill will provide for the regulation, operation, and planning of major ports in India and to provide greater autonomy and flexibility in decision-making.
- The Bill is not aimed at the privatization of government ports. The number of labour trustees will remain the same as earlier.
- The Bill will provide the ports greater autonomy and flexibility to major ports in decision-making as they have to compete with the private sector.
- The Bill proposes to repeal the Major Port Trusts Act, 1963.
2. Parliament passed amendments to IBC Amendment Bill
Parliament passed the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2020, on 12 March 2020. It was earlier passed in Lok Sabha on 6 March. The Bill will now replace an ordinance passed in 2019.
The amendments will introduce a mechanism to incorporate viable changes in the legislation. The Bill will remove bottlenecks and streamline the corporate insolvency resolution process. It aims to provide protection to new owners of a loan defaulter company against prosecution for misdeeds of previous owners.
3. Hola Mohalla festival was celebrated at Anandpur Sahib Punjab
Hola Mohalla festival was celebrated at Anandpur Sahib Punjab from 10-12 March 2020. Hola Mohalla is a Sikh festival celebrated in the month of Phalguna, a day after Holi.
The three-day festival will host mock battles, poetry, and music competitions. The Nihang Singhs will carry the martial tradition with mock battles and displays of swordsmanship and horse riding. They also perform daring feats, such as tent pegging, Gatka (mock encounters), bareback horse-riding, and standing erect on two speeding horses.
4. GOKADDAL-worlds first Digital Solutions Exchange cloud launched in India
The world’s first Digital Solutions Exchange in the cloud “GOKADDAL” has been launched in India. GOKADDAL will revolutionize the way digital solutions are sourced, delivered, and managed.
The cloud-based platform is created to help the customers realize their digital transformation vision by bringing them the right solutions with the right tools and right providers. The platform focus on Automation, Artificial Intelligence, Analytics, and Augmentative Technologies.
GOKADDAL will create a new and significant revenue base for the solution providers. GOKADDAL provides features including Solution search, compare, use EOI/Bidding process to select the right solution in the right budget.
5. Maharashtra approves a bill on caste validity certificate
Maharashtra State Assembly approved a bill on caste validity certificate. The Bill was unanimously passed by the Maharashtra state assembly on 11 March 2020.
The Bill will allow gram panchayat members to submit their caste validity certificates within a year of winning elections. The Bill will ensure that the aspiring candidates are not barred from contesting the elections if they do not have a caste validity certificate.
6. Wings India 2020 began in Hyderabad
Wings India 2020, an International conference and exhibition on the Civil Aviation sector, has begun on 12 March in Begumpet Airport, Hyderabad, India. The conference will be held from 12-15 March 2020.
The biennial event is organized by the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Airports Authority of India (AAI) along with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
7. WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic
he World Health Organization (WHO) declared the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, a “pandemic” on 11 March. The infectious disease has spread freely in more than 100 countries around the world.
In January, WHO declared the COVID-19 outbreak as a “global health emergency.” WHO’s highest level of alarm reserves for the most sudden, serious, unexpected outbreaks that cross international borders and might require a coordinated response between countries.
According to WHO, a new disease that is spread worldwide and the determination is made based on the geographic spread of a disease, the severity of illnesses it causes, and its effects on society are defined as “pandemic.”
8. IISc researchers develop a method to rapidly detect disease-causing bacteria
Researchers at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) have developed a new method to rapidly identify and check whether a disease-causing bacterium is alive or dead. The uniqueness of the method is the rapidity and sensitivity of the method.
9. Maharashtra implements happy hour for autorickshaws
Maharashtra State government approved the implementation of “happy hour” for autorickshaws. The move was recommended by Khatua panel, which is led by retired IAS officer BC Khatua and the four-members of the panel.
The government resolution stated that fares would be slashed by 15% between 12 noon and 4 pm, barring the minimum fare first 1.5 km. It is applicable only for autorickshaws and not to local taxis and app-based taxis. The panel stated that it would turn lean hours to happy hours, especially for housewives and senior citizens. The move is opposed by the autorickshaw unions of the state.
10. 6th International Day of Yoga led by PM Modi to be held in Leh
The Major national event for the 6th International Day of Yoga is to be held in Leh, the capital of Ladakh on 21st June, 2020. The event is to be led by PM Modi. Since 2015, PM Modi leads a mass demonstration of Yoga every year on the International Day of Yoga. This year, the Yoga demonstration is to be differe
11. World Bank and GoI sign Agreement on Climate Resilient Rain-Fed Agriculture
World Bank, Government of India and Government of Himachal Pradesh signed a loan agreement of 80 million USD to increase agricultural productivity and improve water management practices in Himachal Pradesh.
12. Veteran Bengali actor Santu Mukhopadhyay dies aged 69
Veteran Bengali actor Santu Mukhopadhyay died aged 69 on Wednesday in Kolkata. Reportedly, he had been suffering from cancer for long and was admitted to a hospital on February 4 with blood sugar and hypertension. Santu acted in over 50 films in his career and is known for roles in films like ‘Bidrohi’ (1987), ‘Bajimaat’ (2008) and ’90 Ghanta’ (2008).