1. New mutual funds rules from 2021
Mutual funds have gone through many regulatory changes in 2020. In order to make mutual funds more transparent and safer for investors, SEBI has introduced some measures which will be effective from 2021. Some of these changes include the change in portfolio allocation rules for multi-cap equity mutual funds, renaming of dividend option, etc.
2. ICC announces Men’s Teams of the Decade
The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the men’s and women’s ODI and T201 teams of the decade. Former India captain MS Dhoni has been named the captain of both the men’s ODI and T201 Team of the Decade which also features Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma. The ICC also announced the Test team of the decade and named Virat Kohli as the skipper.
3. Solar energy-enabled “Modern Beat Booth”
The Delhi Police set up a solar energy-enabled “modern beat booth”, which is also water, fire, and vandalism proof, at India Gate. It is solar energy-enabled with a storage capacity of 10 hours. It is remote wifi-enabled for digital display of informative or awareness messages on LED panels installed on top of it and has a public announcement system.
4. HP CM unveils 18-feet statue of Vajpayee
Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur unveiled the statue of Bharat Ratna and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee at The Ridge Ground in Shimla on the occasion of his 96th birth anniversary. He also addressed ‘Atal Samriti Samaroh’ which was organised by the State Language, Art and Culture Department at Gaiety Theatre on the occasion of ‘Sushashan Divas’ on December 25, 2020.
5. PM launches Ayushman Bharat scheme for J&K
Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Ayushman Bharat scheme via video-conferencing to extend health insurance coverage to all residents of Jammu and Kashmir in Dec 2020. The scheme will provide free-of-cost insurance cover to all residents of the UT of Jammu and Kashmir. It will extend financial cover of up to 5 lakh per family on a floater basis to all residents of the UT
5. Sikh gurus’ history to be in school syllabus
The history of Sikh gurus will be included in the school curriculum in Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath announced. This announcement was made on the occasion of ‘Sahibzada Diwas’, which marks the martyrdom of four ‘Sahibzada’ of 10th Sikh guru Guru Gobind Singh and Mata Gujri. He also announced that December 27 will be celebrated every year as Sahibzada Diwas in all schools.
7. Pooja Devi becomes J&K’s 1st woman bus driver
Pooja Devi of Kathua district has become the first woman passenger bus driver in Jammu and Kashmir. Mother of three children, Pooja Devi ferried passengers on the Jammu-Kathua route for the first time on 24 December 2020.
8. Myanmar commissions submarine gifted by India
Myanmar formally commissioned erstwhile INS Sindhuvir as UMS Minye Theinkhathu into its navy. It was commissioned by the Myanmar Navy on the occasion of its 73rd anniversary on December 26, 2020. It is the first submarine to be acquired by the Myanmar Navy. It was handed over by India to the country in October 2020.
9. Former WWE wrestler Luke Harper passes away
US wrestler Jon Huber, better known to fans as Brodie Lee or Luke Harper, passed away in December 2020. He won the Tag Team titles twice while also winning the Intercontinental Championship during his run in the WWE. After joining AEW (All Elite Wrestling), he won the AEW TNT Championship.
10. RCP Singh becomes a new JD(U) president
RCP Singh, a close confidant of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, was chosen as the new president of Janata Dal (United). Kumar had proposed the name of Singh for the top post, which was then approved by other members during the party’s national executive meeting. Singh, a bureaucrat-turned-politician, was so far the general secretary of the regional party.
11. PM Modi to flag off 100th Kisan Rail on 28 Dec
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will flag off the 100th Kisan Rail from Sangola in Maharashtra to Shalimar in West Bengal on December 28 at 4:30 pm via video conferencing. The multi-commodity train service will carry vegetables as well as fruits. The first Kisan Rail was introduced from Devlali in Maharashtra to Danapur in Bihar on August 7, 2020.
12. Year-End Review report of Jal Shakti Ministry
The National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) has completed 22 projects and sanctioned 17 new projects related to Sewerage Infrastructure, Pollution Abatement, Afforestation, and Biodiversity in 2020 at a total cost of over 557 crore rupees. India ranks third globally after China and the USA with 5334 large dams in operation. About 411 dams are under construction.
13. President Kovind inaugurates various projects
President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated & laid foundation stones for several projects in Diu. These included the inauguration of the 1st academic session of IIIT Vadodara-International Campus Diu; & Kamleshwar School, Ghoghla, etc. Diu city has now become the first city in India, which is fulfilling 100 per cent of its energy requirement during the day with solar energy.
14. Gwalior hosts Tansen Music festival
The much-awaited Tansen Music Festival began in Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh on Dec 26, 2020. The inaugural day events started with cross-cultural offerings of Harikatha, Milad and Shehnai vadan at Tansen’s samadhi sthal in Hazira. The festival would conclude on December 30 at Behat village, the birthplace of the music maestro Tansen. This event is the 96th edition of the Tansen music festival.
15. Telangana farmers to get financial assistance
Telangana CM K Chandrashekhar Rao has announced that all farmers in the state will receive financial assistance under the Rythu Bandhu scheme from 28 December 2020. A review meeting in this regard was held at Pragathi Bhavan on 27 December 2020. The state government had announced earlier in Dec 2020 that the financial aid would be given from Dec 27, 2020, to January 7, 2021.
16. BMW to step up production of EVs
German luxury carmaker BMW is planning to step up its production of electric vehicles. Between 2021 and 2023, it will build a quarter of a million more electric cars than originally planned. BMW wants roughly every fifth car it sells to be powered by an electric engine by 2023, compared to about 8% in 2020.
17. Bihar wins Digital India Award
The Bihar govt has won the Digital India Awards, instituted by the central govt, for innovative steps in e-governance. It has been awarded for its initiative to transfer financial assistance directly to the accounts of beneficiaries during the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 21 lakh stranded workers outside Bihar were provided financial assistance through the “Bihar Sahayata Mobile App”.
18. Army Chief leaves for S. Korea on 3-day visit
Army Chief General MM Naravane on 28 December 2020, left for South Korea on a three-day visit. During the visit, he will hold talks with the top defense brass of the country on ways to expand bilateral military cooperation. The Army Chief will also visit the Korea Combat Training Centre in Gangwon province. South Korea has been a major supplier of military platforms and weapons to India.
19. UP Govt to procure new testing equipment
UP govt will procure new testing equipment in view of the discovery of a new strain of COVID-19 in the United Kingdom and elsewhere. CM Yogi Adityanath has directed the tracing of all people coming from the UK, France, and other countries, conducting their mandatory RTPCR tests and quarantining them till their results are available. The state currently has 15371 active Covid patients.
20. Jawhar earns tag of mini-Mahabaleshwar
In Maharashtra, the tribal area of Jawhar has earned the tag of being called as mini-Mahabaleshwar. Strawberry is mainly grown in Mahabaleshwar, a famous hill station in the state. On an experimental basis, about 86 farmers in Jawhar and Mokhada talukas have planted strawberries on 11 acres of land drawing huge profit.
21. Mhaismal village gets tap water for 1st time
For the first time after independence, tap water came to Mhaismal village of Nashik district in Maharashtra a few days ago. Mhaismal village in Surgana taluka of Nashik district had been severely affected by water scarcity for decades. It was part of a regular routine for the women from this village to roam for miles to fetch water for household use.
22. UP govt to constitute Prantiya Rakshak Dal
UP govt has decided to constitute companies of Prantiya Rakshak Dal (PRD) in urban areas also. Till now the companies were only getting volunteers from the rural areas. Women volunteers will get special preference in PRD,
Established through an act in 1948, PRD works as an alternate security force. First time after 71 years of its formation the urban company of PRD is being constituted.
23. Facebook signs deal with Tips Music
Facebook has signed a global music licensing deal with Bollywood music label Tips. With the move, Facebook and Instagram users will be able to add Tips’ music catalog for videos and other social experiences to their posts and stories. The library including yesteryear hits of artists such as Alka Yagnik will be available for social experiences such as videos, stories via music stickers.
24. New Bhaupur-New Khurja section of EDFC
PM Narendra Modi will inaugurate the New Bhaupur-New Khurja section of Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor, EDFC on 29 December 2020. The 351-kilometer section of EDFC is situated in Uttar Pradesh and is built at a cost of Rs. 5,750 crore. The section will decongest the existing Kanpur-Delhi mainline and will enable Indian Railways to run faster trains,
25. MP CM felicitates sportspersons, coaches
MP CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan felicitated sportspersons, coaches, and sports personalities with a state-level sports award for the year 2019 at Bhopal on 28 Dec 2020. Olympian hockey player Inam-ur-Rehman was awarded the Life Time Achievement Award for the year 2019. 14 players were nominated for Eklavya Award, 10 for Vikram Award, 3 for Vishwamitra Award, and 1 for Life Time Achievement Award.
26. Sports Ministry issues SOP
The Sports Ministry has issued Standard Operating Procedures, SOP for the conduct of sporting events in the country. A COVID task force shall be constituted for each sporting competition by the organizing committee to guide and monitor all athletes and athlete support personnel. This task force will be responsible for the overall implementation of the protocols outlined in this SOP.
27. Beijing city enters ‘state of emergency’
Chinese Capital city Beijing has issued instructions to all districts, departments, and companies to enter a state of emergency and adopt stringent measures to stop the spread of COVID-19. The city has reported a total of 13 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the recent wave, nine in Shunyi district, three in Chaoyang district, and one in Xicheng. Beijing has also started mass testing.
28. Trump signs a massive package into law
US President Donald Trump has signed into law a massive $2.3 trillion spending bill that includes a USD 900 billion coronavirus relief package. It is a coronavirus aid to millions suffering from the economic impact of the pandemic. Among its many provisions, the coronavirus relief package includes direct payments to qualifying Americans, funds for small businesses, and vaccine distribution.
29. Dry run for vaccine to be held in four states
India began a dry run for the coronavirus vaccine in four states – Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab, and Assam from 28 Dec 2020. The aim of the exercise is to identify challenges and make required changes in the plan so that the final process becomes foolproof. The mock drill will include concurrent monitoring and review at the block and district levels and preparation of feedback.
30. MORTH extends validity of vehicular documents
Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has extended the validity of vehicular documents such as driving licenses (DLs) and permits till 31 March 2021. This has been done in light of the need to prevent the spread of Covid-19. The Ministry had earlier issued advisories on 30 March, 9 June, and 24 Aug 2020 regarding the extension of validity of documents related to Motor Vehicles Act, 1988.
31. EAM Dr. S Jaishankar on 2-day visit to Qatar
External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar is on a two-day visit to Qatar from 27 December 2020. He met business leaders in Qatar on 27 December 2020 and highlighted the investment opportunities in India. He began his trip with the India-Qatar Business Roundtable. He also held talks with his counterpart on bilateral issues as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest.
32. India to be fifth-biggest economy by 2025
Indian economy will again overtake the UK to become the fifth-largest economy in 2025 and race to the third spot by 2030. This was announced by the UK-based think-tank, the Centre for Economics and Business Research on 27 Dec 2020. India had overtaken the UK in 2019 to become the fifth-largest economy in the world but was relegated to the 6th spot in 2020.
33. Foundation stone laid for 7 major projects
Union Home Minister Amit Shah visited Manipur on 27 December 2020. The Minister laid the foundation stone for seven major projects and inaugurated two other projects. Mr. Shah also inaugurated the statewide rollout of e-office. Mr. Shah also addressed a public gathering at Hapta Kngjeibung in Imphal before leaving the state.
34. Safari rides to start in Bengaluru’s BNP
The Karnataka Forest Department has decided to start the safari in Bannerghatta National Park in January on a pilot basis. Spread over 200 sq km, BNP is relatively a smaller forest area than Bandipur and Nagarahole. BNP is home to a lone male tiger besides housing several leopards, elephants, bears, dhols, monitor lizards, and a thriving herbivore, reptile, and avian population.