Daily GK Update: 17th June 2020

Anmol Narang becomes first observant Sikh to graduate from US Military Academy at West Point

  • US President Donald Trump on Saturday addressed the 1,107 graduates, including 23-year-old Narang, who gathered for the academy’s annual commencement.
  • “It’s an incredible feeling. It’s a humbling experience, I have never worked harder for anything in my life. Being a Sikh woman is a very important part of my identity and if my experience can play a small role in being an inspiration for others, regardless of career field, that will be wonderful,” Narang told CNN.
  • A second-generation immigrant born and raised in Roswell, Georgia, Narang had an early appreciation for military service due to her maternal grandfather’s career in the Indian Army.

Source: The Tribune

Maha Vir Chakra Awardee Lt Gen Raj Mohan Vohra Dies Of COVID-19

  • Maha Vir Chakra awardee Lt Gen (retd) Raj Mohan Vohra has died due to COVID-19 in Delhi, senior officials said on Tuesday.
  • The decorated officer breathed his last on June 14, they said.
  • “He was admitted to a private hospital for a stent procedure. He died on June 14 due to COVID-19 infection,” a senior official said.
  • His cremation was held on Sunday, the official said.
  • The Maha Vir Chakra is the country’s second-highest gallantry award. It is awarded for acts of conspicuous gallantry in the presence of the enemy whether on land, at sea or in the air.
  • Lt Gen Vohra had received the coveted award in 1972.

Source: Outlook India

UP becomes top state in country to provide employment to workers under MGNREGA

  • Uttar Pradesh has become the top state in the country to provide employment to the workers under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme MGNREGA. Yesterday Uttar Pradesh provided employment to more than 57 lakh workers under MGNREGA.
  • According to the data released by officials, Yesterday 57 lakh 12975 workers got employment in around 57 thousand village panchayats of the state which is 18% of the total work generated under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) in the country.
  • Officials said that the state has generated 7.93 crore man-days and the government will provide jobs to 10 lakh more workers in the coming days. The employment push from the state government under MGNREGA comes as a major positive development at a time when more than 30 lakh migrant labourers have returned from other states to UP.
  • Meanwhile, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has asked officials to conduct a detailed survey of all the industrial units and explore possibilities of employment so that migrant workers who have returned from other states can be accommodated.

Source: All India Radio

Union Minister Dr. Jitendra Singh launches “Feedback Call Centres on COVID -19 Public Grievances and Interacts Live with Citizens”

  • Union Minister of State for Personnel, PG and Pensions Dr. Jitendra Singh todaylaunched the “Feedback Call Centres on Public Grievances” and interacted live with citizens whose grievances have been successfully redressed on the COVID-19 National Monitor for Public Grievances. Dr. Jitendra Singh complimented DARPG on reaching the milestone of redressing One Lakh COVID-19 Public Grievances so far.He said that the “Leadership of PM Modi has inspired Government to put in a lot of effort to addressing Grievances of Common Man”.
  • This is the first time that a Senior Minister of Government has interacted live with Citizens who had filed grievances during COVID-19 and also paved way for other Ministries to take up citizen grievances in an effective manner along with a feedback mechanism.

Source: Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions

India, China expanded nuclear stockpile in last one year: report

  • All nations that have nuclear weapons continue to modernise their nuclear arsenals, while India and China increased their nuclear warheads in the last one year, according to a latest report by Swedish think tank Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).
  • “China is in the middle of a significant modernisation of its nuclear arsenal. It is developing a so-called nuclear triad for the first time, made up of new land and sea-based missiles and nuclear-capable aircraft. India and Pakistan are slowly increasing the size and diversity of their nuclear forces…,” according to the findings of SIPRI Yearbook 2020, released on Monday.

Source: The Hindu

Khelo India State Centres of Excellence to be set up across country

  • One such centre will be identified in each State and Union Territory with an aim to create a robust sporting ecosystem in the entire country.
  • In the first leg, the Ministry has identified state-owned sports facilities in eight states including Karnataka, Odisha, Kerala, Telengana, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland which will be upgraded into Khelo India State Centre of Excellence.
  • Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said, these centres are being established to strengthen India’s pursuit for excellence in Olympics. He said, the effort is to scale up the best sporting facilities available in each state into academies of world-class standard.
  • Rijiju said, the sporting facilities have been identified after in-depth analysis by a government committee. He expressed confidence that this step will tap the talents from across the country and will prove beneficial in training of athletes.

Source: DD News

New jobs, organic products in offing as KVIC taps Indian Palm Industry

  • The Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) has rolled out a unique project to produce Neera and Palmgur which has huge potential to create employment in the country. The project that aims at promoting Neera as a substitute to soft drinks while also creating self-employment to Adivasis and traditional trappers was launched on Tuesday at Dahanu in Palghar district of Maharashtra, a state with more than 50 lakh palm trees.
  • KVIC distributed tool kits for extraction of Neera and making palmgur to 200 local artisans who were given 7 days training by KVIC. A tool kit worth Rs 15,000 comprises food grade stainless steel Kadhai, perforated moulds, canteen burners and other equipment like knives, rope and axes for extraction of Neera. The initiative will provide direct employment to 400 local traditional trappers.
  • Neera, extracted from the palm trees before sunrise, is a nutrient-rich health drink consumed in many Indian states. However, due to lack of institutionalized market technique, the commercial production and large scale marketing of Neera has not commenced yet. The project has been rolled out on the initiative of Union Minister of MSME, Shri Nitin Gadkari who is also exploring the feasibility of engaging some big players of the state to start using Neera as soft drinks to make it commercially useful.

Source: Ministry of Micro,Small & Medium Enterprises

Senior journalist, freedom fighter Dinu Randive passes away

  • Senior journalist and freedom fighter from Maharashtra, Dinu Randive passed away at his residence in Dadar, Mumbai this morning due to old age. He was 95. Mr. Randive played a key role in the struggle movement to carve out Maharashtra state called Samyukta Maharashtra movement. He also participated in the Goa liberation movement.
  • The veteran journalist was born in 1925 at a tribal hamlet at Dahanu near Mumbai, he started his journalistic career in 1956. Early this year, he was conferred with the lifetime achievement award by the Mantralaya and Vidhimandal Vartahar Sangh, an association of journalists covering Maharashtra legislature and secretariat.

Source: All India Radio

Former Goa minister Achyut Usgaonkar passes away

  • Former Goa minister Achyut Kashinath Sinai Usgaonkar died at a hospital near Panaji on Tuesday following age-related ailments, family sources said. He was 92.
  • Usgaonkar was a leader of the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), the oldest regional outfit in Goa.
  • He served as a cabinet minister from August 13, 1977 to April 27, 1979 in the then Shashikala Kakodkar government of Goa, Daman and Diu.
  • “Usgaonkar died at the Goa Medical College and Hospital (located near Panaji) around 7.30 am,” his son-in-law Dinar Tarcar told PTI.
  • He is survived by three daughters, including noted film actor Varsha Usgaonkar.
  • Before serving as a minister, Achyut Usgaonkar was the deputy speaker of Goa during the Dayanand Bandodkar-led government.
  • Bandodkar was the first chief minister of the coastal state.

Source: India Today

Amid pandemic, traditional art of ‘talamaddale’ goes digital

  • The traditional art of ‘talamaddale’, a variant of Yakshagana theatre, too has gone virtual in times of COVID-19. A performance was streamed live on social media on June 13 and more such are in store.
  • Vasudeva Ranga Bhat, the artiste who enacted the role of Rama in an episode of Ramayana performed from Udupi, while his counterpart Sripada Hegde, who played the part of Lakshmana, was in California in the U.S. Another artist Ganapathi Bhat Sankadagundi, who was Bharata, was in Mysuru. The musicians — Anantha Hegde Dantalige, the ‘bhagavatha’ (singer-cum-director), and Ganapathi Bhagvat Kavale, the ‘maddale’ player — were in Yellapur in Uttara Kannada.

Source: The Hindu