Daily Current Affairs and GK | 8 and 9 November 2020

By PendulumEdu | Last Modified: 10 Nov 2020 01:23 AM IST

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1. Joe Biden becomes 46th President of the United States.

  • Democrat Presidential candidate Joe Biden becomes the 46th president of the United States by beating Donald Trump. He had secured 290 electoral votes in the presidential election.
  • Joe Biden says that he will take action on COVID-19, Economy, Climate change and systemic racism.
  • He will assume office on 20th January 2021.
  • President of the US is elected by the Electoral College for a four-year term.
  • Electoral College has 538 electors and an absolute majority of electoral votes—270 or more—is required for the college to elect the President and Vice President.

(Source: Economic Times)

  • Qualification to become a President in the US:
    • He must be a natural-born citizen of the United States.
    • He should be at least 35 years old.
    • He has been a resident of the United States for 14 years.
    • Election process is divided into different phases:
      • Primaries and Caucuses
      • National Convention
      • General Election
      • Electoral College


(Source: Usa.gov)

2. Kamala Harris becomes the first woman Vice President of US.

  • Democratic Party candidate Kamala Harris has become the first woman Vice President of US.
  • She will be the 49th Vice President of the United States and will replace Mike Pence.
  • She is the first woman of Indian-American and African-American origin to be a member of the United States Senate.
  • The Vice President of the US is the President of the senate.
  • The Vice President is elected for a four-year term through the Electoral College.
  • In the Indian constitution, the post of the Vice President has been borrowed from the US constitution.

kamla harris

(Source: Wikipedia)

3. Vidisha Maitra elected to UN Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions.

  • An Indian diplomat, Vidisha Maitra, has been elected to a UN advisory committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions.
  • T. S. Tirumurti is currently India’s permanent representative at the United Nations.
  • India would be a non-permanent member of the UNSC for a two-year term from 1 January 2021.
  • United Nations:
    • It is an intergovernmental organization that aims to maintain international peace and security and promote friendly relations among its members.
    • It was established on 24 October 1945.
    • The headquarters of the UN is located in New York.
    • Antonio Guterres is the current Secretary-General of the UN.
    • There are six official languages of the UN- Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish.

4. World Radiology Day: 8 November

  • The International Day of Radiology is celebrated every year on 8 November to bring awareness about the value of radiology research, diagnosis and treatment that contribute to patient care.
  • It is celebrated to mark the anniversary of the discovery of X-rays by Wilhelm Conrad Rontgen on 8 November 1895.
  • The day was first observed in 2012. 
  • This year, the day is dedicated to all imaging professionals and their essential role in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The Motto of the International Day of Radiology 2020 is ‘Radiologists and radiographers supporting patients during COVID-19’.
  • Radiology is used in X-rays, MRI scanning equipment, ultrasound devices and play a significant role in the primary care of patients.

5. Nagaland government will host Hornbill Festival virtually.

  • Hornbill festival 2020 will be organized by the Nagaland tourism government from December 1-10 virtually. The aim of the festival is to revive and protect the rich culture of Nagaland.
  • The Hornbill Festival is also known as the “Festival of Festivals” in Nagaland.
  • It is named after the Indian hornbill forest bird, displayed in the folklore of Naga tribes.
  • It is celebrated at Naga Heritage Village, Kisama, about 12 km from Kohima.
  • In this festival, many activities such as dances, crafts, games, food fairs, etc., are organised.
  • Other festivals celebrated in Nagaland are Sekrenyi, Tsukheneye, Aoleang, Naknyulem, etc. 

Hornbill Festival

(Source: Northeastoursim.gov.in)

6. Three other Information Commissioners appointed by President.

  • Three other Information commissioners - Shri Heeralal Samariya, Ms. Saroj Punhani and Shri Uday Mahurkar, were appointed by the President.
  • Yashvardhan Kumar Sinha has taken the oath of the Chief Information Commissioner.
  • The President appointed the Chief Information Commissioner and other information commissioners on the recommendation of a three-member committee, which included Prime Minister, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha and the Home Minister.
  • At present, the strength of Information commissioners is seven.
  • Central Information Commission (CIC):
    • It was established by the Government of India in 2005 under the provisions of Right to Information 2005.
    • It is an independent body that entertains complaints and appeal related to offices, financial institutions, Public sector undertaking, etc., under the government of India.
    • It consists of a Chief Information Commissioner and not more than ten information commissioners.
    • A CIC and other Information Commissioners are appointed for a tenure of five years or until they reach 65 years.

7. India Forex reserve touched a new high.

  • India’s forex reserve touch a new high of USD 560.71 billion.
  • RBI stated that reserve has increased due to the increase in foreign assets.
  • Foreign-exchange reserves of India are the fifth-largest in the world.
  • China has the world’s largest current foreign exchange reserve, followed by Japan.
  • Forex reserves are external assets in the form of gold, SDRs and foreign currency assets held by the nation’s central bank.
  • India’s Forex Reserve include:
    • Foreign Currency Assets
    • Gold reserves
    • Special Drawing Rights

8. Science and Technology Minister holds consultation with Indian Diaspora on STIP 2020.

  • Science and Technology Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan consulted with the Indian Diaspora on Science Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP) 2020.
  • During the consultations, he talked with Indian Diaspora to facilitate channels through which Diaspora will contribute to STIP 2020.  The consultation process for STIP 2020 was started in June 2020.
  • The government is working on STIP 2020 across four tracks. They are extended public and expert consultation, thematic group consultation, ministries and state consultation, and apex level multi-stakeholder consultation.
  • STIP 2020 will be India's 5th Science Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP). Governments have earlier brought out four STIPs with different names listed below.
    • Scientific Policy Resolution 1958
    • Technology Policy Statement 1983
    • Science and Technology Policy 2003  
    • Science Technology and Innovation Policy 2013


(Source: News on AIR)

9. Rs. 614 crore worth projects to be inaugurated by PM Modi in Varanasi.

  • PM Modi will inaugurate and lay the foundation stone for Rs 614 crore worth of development projects in Varanasi on 9 November.
  • Nearly 1500 people will take part in video conferencing for the inauguration of the projects. PM will also interact with project beneficiaries in the presence of the UP Chief Minister.
  • The video conference will be displayed live at 6 places in the city, and 5 LED mobile vans.
  • First Sarnath Light and Sound show will be held for the public at 7:15 in the evening. The names of the projects are given in the following table.

Projects to be inaugurated

Projects for which foundation stone will be laid

Sarnath Light and Sound show, Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS) phase 2 Redevelopment of Dashashwamedh Ghat and Khidkiya Ghat
Upgradation of Lal Bahadur Shastri Hospital Ramnagar, Housing complex for players in Sampurnanand Stadium

Redevelopment of barracks for PAC police force

Sewerage related works, Varanasi city smart lighting work, 105 Anganwadi Kendras

Redevelopment of certain wards of Kashi, parking facility along with the redevelopment of a park in Beniya Bagh

Multipurpose seed storehouse, agriculture produce warehouse of 100 MT Upgradation of the multipurpose hall in Girija Devi Sanskritik Sankul,
Infrastructure facilities for protection and conservation of cows, 102 Gau Ashray Kendras

Repair work of roads in the city and development of tourist places


10. Ministry of Shipping renamed as Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways.

  • PM Modi has announced that the Ministry of Shipping is being renamed as Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways.
  • PM Modi announced changing of the name while launching Gujarat's second ro-pax (Roll-On-Roll-Off-Passenger) ferry service to connect Hazira in Surat and Ghogha in Bhavnagar district, Gujarat, on 8 November.
  • PM also said that work is being done on Gujarat Maritime Cluster in GIFT (Gujarat International Finance Tec) City at Gandhinagar and the world's first CNG Terminal in Bhavnagar.
  • India's first chemical and LNG Terminal is in Dahej, Gujarat.  PM Modi said that India spends more money on transportation than other nations, and logistics costs can be reduced through water transport.
  • Ministry of Shipping: 
    • Ministry of Shipping was formed on 17 November 2000 by bifurcating the Ministry of Surface Transport into the Ministry of Shipping and Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. 
    • Mansukh Laxmanbhai Mandaviya is the current Minister of Shipping (Minister of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways).


(Source: News on AIR)

11. AIM and Sirius launch AIM-Sirius Innovation Programme for Indian and Russian school children.

  • Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) and Sirius, Russia's Educational Center, have launched AIM-Sirius Innovation Programme for Indian and Russian school children.
  • AIM-Sirius programme attempts to find technological solutions for India and Russia.
  • It is a two-week programme in which 8 virtual products and mobile applications will be created by 48 students and 16 educators and mentors.
  • It will start on 7 November and continue till 21 November. The virtual products and mobile applications will address global challenges in areas of cognitive science, health and well-being, and artificial intelligence.
  • SIRIUS is Russia's Educational Center in its Sochi city.
  • Atal Innovation Mission (AIM):
    • It was approved on 24 February 2016. It is a flagship initiative of NITI Aayog set up to promote innovation and entrepreneurship.
    • Atal Tinkering Labs is one of the initiatives under the Atal Innovation Mission. It promotes a creative, innovative mindset in schools.


(Source: News on AIR)

12. Google Doodle commemorates Pu La Deshpande's 101st birth anniversary.

  • Google Doodle has commemorated the 101st birth anniversary of Purushottam Laxman Deshpande (Pu La Deshpande).     
  • His grandfather, Vaman Mangesh Dubhashi, is famous for translating Rabindranath Tagore's collection of poems, Gitanjali, into Marathi. It was named Abhang Gitanjali.
  • He is also mentioned as "Maharashtra's beloved personality". He was born on 8 November 1919.
  • His film posters were organized by the National Film Archive of India (NFAI) in 2018.
  • Mumbai-based artist Sameer Kulavoor has designed the Google Doodle commemorating Pu La Deshpande's 101st birth anniversary.   







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