March 2021

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs / News (March 06, 2021) for CSS, PMS


March 06, 2021: National / International Current Affairs

1. Sinopharm jab use for people over 60 allowed

• In line with three other Asian countries, the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (Drap) has allowed Chinese Sinopharm vaccine to be administered to people over the age of 60.
• Earlier, the authority had allowed the vaccine to be given to frontline healthcare workers who were below the age of 60 and those above the age group were to be administered the Oxford`s AstraZeneca vaccine which was due in the first week of the current month. However, its delivery has been delayed for a couple of weeks.
• Now Drap has given a go ahead to healthcare workers over 60 years to get themselves inoculated with the Sinopharm vaccine without any delay.

2. Govt debt surges by 11pc to Rs36.53tr

• The federal government`s total debt increased to Rs36.537 trillion by end-January as against Rs32.997tr in the same period last year, up by almost 11 per cent, or Rs3.54tr.
• Latest data released by the State Bank of Pakistan on March 5, 2021 showed the central government`s domestic debt also increased to Rs24.502tr at the end of first seven months of 2020-21 when compared to Rs21.794tr, an increase of 12.4pc, or Rs2.71tr.

3. Nine ordinances, five bills introduced in noisy Punjab Assembly session

• Notwithstanding the pointing out of lack of quorum by a lawmaker, business continued as usual in the Punjab Assembly in a rare deviation from the rules here on March 5, 2021.
• This led to a noisy protest by the opposition, whose members tore copies of the agenda and shouted slogans against the government. They refused to buy the argument of Law Minister Basharat Raja that the business advisory committee had decided against raising the quorum issue during the current (30th) session

4. Pakistan to chair WTO body on trade, uplift

• Pakistan has been elected to the chair of Committee on Trade & Development (CTD) of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) for 2021.
• In a press release issued late on March 4, 2021, the WTO General Council noted the consensus on a slate of names of chairpersons for WTO bodies, including Pakistan`s ambassador to the WTO in Geneva, Switzerland, Dr Muhammad Mujtaba Piracha for heading the CTD.

5. FBR signs pact to activate track and trace system

• The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) signed a contract with a consortium on March 5, 2021 to operationalise the `Track & Trace Solution` on tobacco, cement, sugar and fertiliser sectors from July 1, aimed at accelerating digitisation of economic activity, improving revenue forecasting and curbing counterfeit products in the market.
• The FBR said that 45 million tonnes of cement, over four billion sticks of tobacco cigarettes, four million tonnes of sugar and 30m tonnes of fertiliser would be brought into the tax net

6. Bill moved in HK legislature to allow Beijing to vet candidates

• China moved on March 5, 2021 to grant itself veto powers over selecting Hong Kong`s lawmakers, part of a campaign to eliminate dissent and ensure a `patriotic` government in the city following huge democracy rallies in 2019.
• Legislation to allow China`s communist rulers to vet all election candidates in Hong Kong was tabled at the opening of the nation`s rubber-stamp parliament in Beijing

7. Nepal govt signs peace deal with banned Maoist group

• An outlawed Maoist group accused of staging several attacks signed a peace deal with Nepal`s communist government on March 5, 2021, bringing an end to the country`s only active insurgency.
• Jubilant Prime Minister K. P. Sharma Oli hailed the deal as `historic` at a gathering with the group`s leader Netra Bikram Chand, who came out of hiding for the signing.
• Nepal has enjoyed relative peace since 2006, when a decade-long civil war ended and most rebels joined mainstream politics

8. Biden inducts third Pakistani-American into his team

• US President Joe Biden has inducted a third Pakistani American, Dilawar Syed, into his team, says a White House media statement.
• Mr Syed will serve as the deputy administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA), if confirmed by the US Senate. Confirming his nomination on Twitter, Mr Syed said he was `deeply humble d & honored` and will `put my heart and soul into helping small businesses everywhere` as the `grit of small businesses` made America strong

9. In historic visit to Iraq, pope urges people to give peace a chance

• Pope Francis, beginning the first trip by a pontiff to Iraq, made an impassioned call on March 5, 2021 for an end to the militant violence and religious strife that has plagued the country for decades, saying peacemakers should finally be given a chance.
• `May the clash of arms be silenced … may there be an end to acts of violence and extremism,` he said, addressing Iraqi President Barham Salih, politicians and diplomats at the presidential palace

10. Researchers trace age of ‘Woolly Mammoth’

• Woolly mammoths may have walked the landscape at the same time as the earliest humans in what is now New England, according to a Dartmouth study published in Boreas.
• Through the radiocarbon dating of a rib fragment from the Mount Holly mammoth from Mount Holly, Vt., the researchers learned that this mammoth existed approximately 12,800 years ago.

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