SBI asks customers to update mobile numbers for ATM cash withdrawals:
- State Bank of India (SBI) introduced OTP-based ATM withdrawals with effect from 1st January 2020.
- SBI OTP-based ATM cash withdrawals are applicable for above 10,000 cash withdrawals. This service is functional at all SBI ATMs between 8 pm to 8 am.
- They need to carry their mobile to the ATMs. The ATM cash withdrawals now made even safer, with the OTP-based authentication process from SBI, in effect from 1st January 2020.
India Forex reserves touch all time high of 457.468 billion:
- India’s foreign exchange reserves got by 2.520 billion USD to touch a record high of 457.468 billion USD in the week on 27th December 2019.
- The foreign currency assets, a significant part of the overall reserves, rose by 2.203 billion USD to 424.936 billion USD. The reserves surged by 456 million USD to end at 454.948 billion USD.
- Gold reserves increased by 260 million USD to end at 27.392 billion USD.
ISRO sets up academic centre in Karnataka to provide 2 crore:
- The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) set up a regional academic center for space at the National Institute of Technology (NITK) at Surathkal in Karnataka’s southwest Dakshina Kannada district.
- The center at NIT-K will conduct joint research and development in space technology applications to meet the needs of our space programs.
- ISRO will provide two crore grants annually to NIT for the R&D projects and promotional activities throughout the year.
Gujarat government employees now get DA at par with central govt employees:
- The Gujarat government hiked the dearness allowance (DA) by five percent. With this, the DA would be 17 percent on par with Central government employees. The hike will come into effect retrospectively from July 1, 2019. It will benefit 5.11 lakh employees and 4.5 lakh, pensioners.
- This month’s salary paid with new DA, arrears of previous months would pay in a phased manner.
- The hike would put an additional burden of 1,821 crores on the state exchequer every year.
Chhattisgarh CM constitutes panels for Rs 2500 paddy price:
- Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel to set up a committee to ensure the payment of Rs 2500 per quintal to farmers against procurement of paddy.
- Committee to ensure the payment of Rs 2500 The schemes of central and state governments for provisions of financial aids for farmers and after detailed discussion-deliberation on all the aspects and submit recommendation within a month.
- The Baghel-led Congress government announced it would form the panel in November last year.
Income tax department issues new 2020 calendar for taxpayers with all deadlines:
- The income tax department issued a new calendar for the year 2020, a list of all the important tax-related deadlines.
- The File-it-yourself calendar to help taxpayers file their income tax returns. The e-calendar informs taxpayers of the various services offered by the taxman.
- The due dates for TCS and TDS deposits for the quarter ending December 31, 2019. The march 15 is the due date for payment of the fourth and last installment of advance tax for the year 2020-21.
India gives $75 million LoC to Cuba for solar parks:
- India has extended a line of credit (LoC) of USD 75 million (over Rs 500 crore) to Cuba.
- The line of credit is being provided to finance solar parks in Cuba.
- The line of credit is as per agreement signed between Export-Import Bank of India (Exim Bank) and Banco Exterior De Cuba for installation of 75 MW Photovoltaic Solar Parks in the Republic of Cuba.
- Banco Exterior De Cuba is a nominated agency of the Government of Cuba.
Kolkata Police begins 3rd edition of ‘Sukanya’ project:
- Kolkata Police has started the 3rd edition of ‘Sukanya‘ project. The project aims to provide self-defence training to girls studying in schools and colleges in the city.
- The third batch of ‘Sukanya’ started at 100 city-based schools and colleges situated in Kolkata Police jurisdiction.
- Sukanya project is an initiative of the Kolkata Police’s Community Policing Wing to provide self-defence training to girl students of city-based schools, colleges and universities.
- The initiative is funded by Women and Child Development and Social Welfare Department of the state government.
Neutral pronoun ‘they’ voted Word of the Decade:
- Neutral pronoun ‘they’ has been voted word of the decade by US language experts.
- “They” is used in English by a growing number of non-binary individuals, people who do not identify as either male or female.
- They prefer the plural neutral pronoun to bypass using the pronouns “he” or “she”.
- The selection of “they” is an indication that how a personal expression of gender identity has become an increasing part of our shared discourse.
- The recognition comes after US dictionary Merriam-Webster in December named “they” as word of the year.
- The American Dialect Society had previously named “they” word of the year in 2015.
- Other contenders in the decade category included #BlackLivesMatter, #MeToo, climate, emoji, meme, the opioid crisis and woke.
UN declares Malala Yousafzai ‘Most Famous Teenager of The Decade’:
- The United Nations has declared Pakistani education activist and Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai as “Most Famous Teenager of The Decade”.
- The revelation has been made in its ‘Decade in Review’ report. Malala is working towards children’s rights ever since she was a teenager.
- In recognition of her efforts, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014 and also become the yougest recipient of the award.
CSC inks pact with Paytm Payments Bank for sale of FASTags:
- Common Service Centres (CSC) e-Governance Services India has signed a memorandum of understanding with Paytm Payments Bank Ltd (PPBL) for sale of FASTags.
- The agreement will facilitate the sale of PPBL FASTags through the last mile network of 3.6 lakh CSCs, helping realise the government’s vision of cashless and smooth transit at all toll plazas across the country.
- FASTags which work on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology have been made mandatory at toll gates on national highways.
- The FASTag process allows toll payments directly from the prepaid or savings account linked to it, thus doing away with the need for waiting in queues, saving time and fuel.
RevFin and PNB MetLife in tie-up to offer life cover:
- India’s leading Digital lending startup, RevFin has joined hands with PNB MetLife India Insurance Company to offer protection to the RevFin’s customers by bundling life insurance cover on their loans.
- This insurance covers loans up to ₹3 lakh for a period of 3 years.
- The collaboration will help PNB MetLife to reach out to unbanked areas & drive greater financial inclusion in the country by securing the families of the borrowers against loan repayment in case of unfortunate death of the borrower.
Women Science Congress begins in Bengaluru:
- The Women Science Congress was inaugurated at the ongoing Indian Science Congress in Bengaluru.
- DRDO Aeronautical Systems Director-General Dr Tessy Thomas who is known as Missile Woman of India graced the occasion as the Chief Guest.
- The women’s science congress aims to provide a single platform for women working in different arena of science and technology to showcase their achievements and experiences.
- It will also prepare a vision document or a road map for women in science and technology and recommend policies to enhance the role and utilize the full potential of women in science and technology.
- In this session, women are invited to share ideas and experiences to motivate younger women to actively participate in science to identify and find simpler solutions through Science and Technology.
Adani Ports to buy 75% stake in Krishnapatnam Port:
- Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd (APSEZ), India’s largest private sector port operator, has agreed to buy a 75% stake in Krishnapatnam Port Co. Ltd (KPCL) at an enterprise value of Rs 13,572 crores.
- The Krishnapatnam Port is located in southern Andhra Pradesh and is a multi-cargo facility.
- It handled 54 million tonnes (mt) of cargo in the year ended 31 March 2019.
- The purchase will accelerate Adani Ports’ plan to expand its cargo-handling capacity to 400mt by 2025.
International team of astronomers finds farthest galaxy group EGS77:
- An international team of astronomers funded in part by NASA has found the farthest galaxy group identified as “EGS77“.
- EGS77, the trio of galaxies dates to a time when the universe was only 680 million years old, or less than 5% of its current age of 13.8 billion years. EGS77 is the farthest group of galaxies to have ever been sighted. EGS77 was discovered as part of the Cosmic Deep And Wide Narrowband (Cosmic DAWN) survey.
- The team of astronomers was led by an Indian-origin Goa-born scientist, Vithal Tilvi.
- Vithal Tilvi is currently a visiting researcher at the School of Earth & Space Exploration, at the Arizona State University, US.
AIIMS’ Prof Suresh Chandra Sharma as first chief of NMC:
- The chief of Delhi AIIMS’ ENT head-neck surgery department, Professor Suresh Chandra Sharma, was appointed the chairman of National Medical Commission.
- The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment of Sharma for a period of three years or till the age of 70 years.
- Rakesh Kumar Vats, the secretary-general in the board of governors of the Medical Council of India (MCI), has been appointed as the secretary of the Commission for the similar term.
H.K. Joshi appointed as CMD of Shipping Corporation of India:
- Shipping Corporation of India has appointed Harjeet Kaur Joshi as the new Chairperson & Managing Director of the company.
- She will also hold the additional charge of the post of Director (Finance) of the company for a period of 3 months.
- She is a Fellow Member of The Institute of Cost Accountants of India.
Indian girl Sucheta Satish wins Global Child Prodigy Award 2020:
- A 13-year-old Dubai-based Indian girl Sucheta Satish has won the 100 Global Child Prodigy Award in Delhi.
- She was awarded for singing in most languages during one concert and the longest live singing concert by a child.
- Global Child Prodigy Award is a platform to showcase the talent of children in dance, music, art, writing, acting, modelling, science, sports etc.
- The award is supported by Dr APJ Abdul Kalam International Foundation and Oscar Award-winning music producer AR Rahman among others.
Aayushi Dholakia becomes Miss Teen International 2019:
- Aayushi Dholakia has bagged the title of Miss Teen International 2019.
- She also bagged the titles of Best in National Costume Award and Best in Speech Award.
- Girls from 22 countries participated in the event to win the coveted title. Yessenia Garcia from Paraguay and Anicia Gaothusi from Botswana became the First and second Runners-Up respectively.
- Miss Teen International is the world’s oldest running teen pageant.
- Thu Phan from Vietnam was adjudged Miss Teen Asia, Maria Luisa Piras from Italy bagged the title of Miss Teen Europe, Anicia Gaothusi from Botswana won Miss Teen Africa and Alessandra Santos from Brazil became Miss Teen America at the event.
K. Srikkanth & Anjum Chopra to get CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award:
- Krishnamachari Srikkanth & Anjum Chopra will be conferred with the CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award.
- Krishnamachari Srikkanth will be the recipient of 2019’s prestigious CK Nayudu Lifetime Award.
- Former India women’s captain Anjum Chopra is the co-recipient of the lifetime achievement award for the year 2019.
- Srikkanth and Anjum will be conferred with the Lifetime Achievement award by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for their contributions to Indian cricket.
All-rounder Irfan Pathan retires from all forms of cricket:
- Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.
- He last played for India in October 2012. He played 29 Tests, 120 ODIs and 24 T20Is.
- He was part of the victorious Indian team at the 2007 World Twenty20 and was the man-of-the-match in the final against Pakistan.
- He made his debut at the age of 19 in 2003.
Saurabh Chaudhary wins gold at 63rd National Shooting C’ship:
- Indian shooter Saurabh Chaudhary has won the men’s 10 metres air pistol gold medal at the 63rd National Shooting Championship in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.
- Second-placed Sarabjot Singh of Haryana, while world number two Abhishek Verma settled for bronze in a high-quality final.
- Abhishek and Sarabjot together won the team gold for Haryana. Sarabjot also won the junior men’s gold.
Former Karnataka Governor T N Chaturvedi passes away:
- Former Governor of Karnataka T N Chaturvedi passed away. He was the 14th Governor of Karnataka from 2002–2007.
- He also served as of Comptroller and Auditor General of India from 1984 to 1989. He was awarded the Padma Vibhushan in 1991.