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Daily Current Affairs – 27 Feb 2021 : Today GKToday Updates

1. Election Commission of India announced the schedule of upcoming Assembly Election in West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Assam and Puducherry

  • The Election Commission of India on Feb 26 announced the Assembly Election Schedule for four states and one UT- Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Puducherry.
  • While Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry will see single-phase elections, Assam will go to polls in three phases and West Bengal will have 8 phases.
  • The results of the Assembly Election of all five states/ UT will be declared on May 2nd.
  • Around 18.68 crore electors will cast their vote at 2.7 lakh polling stations in these states.
  • The CEC announced the theme of the National Voter’s Day 2021: “Making our voters safe, informed and vigilant”.

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The Election Commission of India is an autonomous constitutional authority responsible for administering election processes in India at national and state level.

Formed: 25th January 1950


2. Indian Economy returns to growth in Q3 after two quarters of contraction

  • India’s gross domestic product (GDP) for the third quarter (Q3) ended December 2020 stood at 0.4 percent.
  • The government also revised annual GDP estimates for the fiscal year 2020-21 to shrink by a slightly larger margin of 8 percent. This is due to the rebound in growth for key sectors such as manufacturing, financial services and real estate being slower than expected.
  • The economy had shrunk by an unprecedented 24.4 percent in the first quarter this fiscal following the coronavirus pandemic.


3. Government extends ban on commercial international flights till March 31

  • The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has extended the suspension of international commercial passenger flight services till March 31st, according to a circular issued by Aviation regulator.
  • The restrictions will however not apply to cargo flights and flights specifically approved by DGCA.
  • India has formed air bubble pacts with several countries including the US, UK, UAE, Kenya, Bhutan and France among others. Under an air bubble pact between two countries, special international flights can be operated by their airlines between their territories.

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Scheduled international flight operations were suspended from March 23rd last year in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.


4. Pakistan to remain on FATF ‘grey list’ till June

  • Global money laundering watchdog Financial Action Task Force (FATF) decided to keep Pakistan on its terrorism financing “grey list”.
  • In an online press briefing from Paris, FATF President Marcus Pleyer said Islamabad had made progress but was yet to complete its action plan to overcome deficiencies in its combating of money laundering and terrorism financing.
  • FATF said Pakistan should demonstrate effective implementation of targeted financial sanctions against all 1267 and 1373 designated terrorists.
  • It also said Pakistan must have an effective system to deal with terror financing and once Pakistan completes three unfulfilled tasks, the FATF will verify and take decision on Islamabad’s present status in June plenary.
  • Pakistan has been on the grey list since June 2018.

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The FATF is an inter-governmental body set up in 1989 to combat money laundering, terror financing and other related threats to the international financial system.

Currently, it has 39 members.


5. Indian economist Ligia Noronha appointed as Assistant Secretary-General of UN

  • United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has announced the appointment of Ligia Noronha of India as Assistant Secretary-General and Head of the New York Office of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
  • Noronha is an economist with over 30 years of international experience in the field of sustainable development.
  • She has worked since 2014 as Director of UNEP’s Economy Division based in Nairobi, leading UNEP’s work on climate mitigation and energy transitions on inclusive green economies, sustainable consumption and production as well as on trade and sustainable finance.

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The United Nations is an intergovernmental organization that aims to maintain international peace and security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harmonizing the actions of nations.

Headquarters: New York, United States