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Today GK Updates - 25th March Current Affairs

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Today GK Updates – 25th March Current Affairs

1. Govt announces complete nationwide lockdown for 21 days to fight COVID-19

a. Government has announced a complete lockdown of the entire country for 21 days to fight COVID-19. All road, rail and air services will remain suspended during the lockdown, which came into force midnight last night.

b. However, freight movement will continue to carry essential commodities across the country. Essential services like Medical shops, Petrol pumps, grocery stores milk booths, and online shopping have been exempted from the lockdown.

c.Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced a Central allocation of 15,000 crore rupees to strengthen the health infrastructure to tackle the disease.

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Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the name given to the 2019 novel coronavirus. COVID-19 is the name given to the disease associated with the virus. SARS-CoV-2 is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans.

 

2. Tokyo Olympics postponed to 2021, First time in 124 years

a.The Tokyo Olympics 2020 have been postponed because of COVID-19 outbreak. It was proposed by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to postpone the games for one year.

b. Now, the Olympics games will be held next year and the new dates will be announced later. This is for the first time in the 124-year history of the Olympics.

c. It happened only thrice in the history of the Olympics when its actual schedule have had changed.

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The 1916 Olympics were cancelled due to the First World War while the Olympic Games of 1940 and 1944 were cancelled due to World War II. The 1980 Moscow Olympics were boycotted by Western countries led by the US, while the 1984 Los Angeles Games were boycotted by the Soviet Union and its allies.

 

3. PM Narendra Modi announces Rs 15000 crore package to combat COVID-19

a. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a healthcare package worth Rs 15,000 crore to combat COVID-19 situation in India.

b. The amount will be utilized to acquire protective gear and medical equipment, increase testing facilities, training of medical and paramedical staff, PPEs, ICUs, isolation beds and ventilators. The Rs 15,000 crore fund will also be used for the training of medical and paramedical staff.

c. The Prime Minister appealed to the state governments to make public healthcare their top priority right now. He also urged private companies to join in the efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus.

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Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the name given to the 2019 novel coronavirus. COVID-19 is the name given to the disease associated with the virus. SARS-CoV-2 is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans.

 

4. FM announces several measures to provide relief in wake of COVID-19 outbreak

a. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced several measures to provide relief to the people and business communities in the wake of COVID-19 outbreak.

b. In a major relief to people, government has decided that debit card holders can withdraw money from any branch of any banks without paying charge for the next three months. Government has also abolished the minimum balance requirement limit.

c. FM announced that the last date for filing of income tax return for the financial year 2018-19 has been extended till 30th June of this year. She said, interest on delayed payment of income tax reduced to 9 per cent from the 12 per cent.

d. Further, PAN-Aadhaar linking and Vivad Se Vishwas scheme have also been extended till 30th June. She clarified that no additional payment of 10 per cent would be levied on the people who wants to take benefit of this scheme.

e. The Minister has also announced that last date for filling of March, April and May 2020 GST and composition return have also been extended till June. Government has decided that no interest, penalty and late fees will be imposed on those companies which have turnover less than five crores. The companies which have more than five crore turn over will attract 9 per cent interest without imposition of any late fee and penalty.

 

5. World Tuberculosis Day: 24 March

a. Every year, World Tuberculosis Day is celebrated on March 24.

b. World Tuberculosis Day is observed all around the world to raise public awareness about the devastating health, social and economic consequences of Tuberculosis.

c. The World TB Day 2020 theme is ‘It’s Time’.

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The day is observed on March 24 to mark the day when Dr. Robert Koch announced that he had discovered the bacterium that causes TB in 1882.

 

6. Singapore tops economic freedom index, India at 120th place

a. Singapore overtook Hong Kong as the world’s freest economy for the first time in the latest Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom.

b. India has been ranked in 120th position in the study; it has been slowly but steadily making progress.

c. The World Index of Economic Freedom covers 12 freedoms including property rights, financial freedom, government integrity, labour freedom, trade freedom, investment freedom and business freedom.

d. The Index was first published in 1995 and Hong Kong has topped the charts ever since.

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Prime minister: Lee Hsien Loong; Currency: Singapore dollar

 

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