March 2020

Day by Day Current Affairs (March 31, 2020) MCQs for CSS, PMS

Day by Day Current Affairs (March 31, 2020) MCQs for CSS, PMS
Shahzad F. Malik
Written by Shahzad F. Malik
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March 31, 2020: National / International Current Affairs

1. Cell set up to examine virus trend: PM

• Again ruling out the possibility of enforcing a complete lockdown in the country, Prime Minister Imran Khan on March 30, 2020 urged people to fight coronavirus with `wisdom` and said that a cell had been set up at the Prime Minister Office to ascertain upward or downward trend of the deadly virus in a week after which the government would devise its future line of action.
• `We have established a cell at the PM Office to ascertain decreasing or increasing trend of the viral disease in one week and a future line of action will be made after monitoring the situation,` the prime minister said in his address to the nation.
• The prime minister feared starvation due to hoarding and once again warned the hoarders and profiteers of exemplary punishment if they hid stocks of food items and exorbitantly increased their prices


2. Govt approves malaria drug for critically-ill Covid-19 patients

• The Punjab government has allowed treatment of critically ill patients of Covid-19 with chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine besides expanding the capacity of beds across the province.
• The government has procured 50,000 tablets of the two said medicines.
• Mayo Hospital had earlier started using the drug on critical patients of Covid-19.
• China had also treated its critical patients suffering from the virus and the US has also allowed its use


3. ECC approves Rs534bn relief package

• A special meeting of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet on March 30, 2020 struggled to put in place mechanisms for disbursement of various elements of the federal government`s Rs534 billion relief package announced for mitigating the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the country`s poor people and economy.
• Informed sources said that the ECC meeting, presided over by Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance & Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, approved in principle summaries that could be put up by ministries involving a total amount of about Rs534bn.
• Dr Shaikh and some other members of the cabinet pointed out certain limitations of the proposed summaries and ordered their further fine-tuning and clarity for consideration of the federal cabinet`s meeting to be held on Tuesday


4. Another $2m ADB grant to help Pakistan fight Covid-19

• The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on March 30, 2020 approved another $2 million grant to support the government`s efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic in Pakistan.
• The new grant supplements an initial $500,000 approved by the bank on March 20 which is already being deployed to support Pakistan`s procurement of emergency supplies through UNICEF, says the ADB in a press release.
• Taken together, this $2.5m in approved funding represents ADB`s immediate response for Pakistan, with further support to follow

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5. Govt launches virus information service on WhatsApp

• The government has launched a `WhatsApp Corona Helpline` to combat misinformation and deliver updates on the country`s most popular messaging service.
• Starting March 30, 2020, WhatsApp users across the country can reach out to the health ministry on +923001111166 for credible information, awareness resources, latest statistics, or finding the nearest lab for testing. To contact the helpline, citizens should save the WhatsApp number in their phone, and then start a chat by typing `Hi` and sending it to the number, which will prompt them to either type in a query or choose from a list of frequently asked questions. Depending on the question, users will receive verified information in the form of a video, or text or link.
• The WhatsApp helpline provides information in Urdu and six regional languages, including Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashto, Balochi and Kashmiri. The technology answers questions about novel coronavirus, its symptoms, ways to protect your-self, risk assessment, educative videos made by the health ministry and shares information about nearest labs for the Covid-19 test.


6. Lockdown leaves millions without jobs in India

• Indian authorities struggled on Monday to help millions left jobless by a crippling coronavirus lockdown, potentially undermining efforts to stop the virus ravaging the world`s second most populous nation.
• Since the lockdown began on Wednesday, hundreds of thousands of labourers have been heading back from cities where they worked to their home villages, some walking hundreds of miles and with little money or food.
• The exodus has raised worries that those returning may spread coronavirus into rural areas, particularly with authorities resorting to cramming people onto buses and into relief camps and homeless shelters


7. North Korea claims testing `super-large` rocket launchers

• Nuclear-armed North Korea successfully tested `super-large multiple rocket launchers`, state media said on March 30, 2020, but leader Kim Jong Un was not described as commanding the drill as analysts say Pyongyang seeks to normalise its launches.
• With the world focused on the coronavirus pandemic and North Korea insisting it has not had a single Covid-19 case, the isolated state has carried out four such firings this month.
• Unusually, the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) did not say in its report that Kim had directed Sunday`s test.


8. Somali governor killed in Al Shabaab suicide attack

• A governor in Somalia`s Puntland was killed on March 29, 2020 in a suicide bombing claimed by the Al Shabaab jihadist group, police and hospital sources said.
• Abdisalan Hassan Hersi, governor of Nugaal region, succumbed to his injuries after being rushed to hospital in Garowe, the capital of Puntland where the blast occurred on Sunday.
• `The doctors tried to save the governor`s life but unfortunately he died from his injuries,` Mohamed Well, a police officer in Puntland, said on March 30, 2020.
• `He was in a critical condition when he was admitted to hospital


9. Popular Japanese comedian dies from virus

• Popular Japanese comedian Ken Shimura, who drew inspiration from the American comedic icon Jerry Lewis, has died from the coronavirus, becoming Japan’s first known celebrity victim of the disease. He was 70.
• Shimura, who attracted fans of all generations with his slapstick comedy and funny faces, had been treated at a Tokyo hospital and died on Sunday, according to his agency, Izawa Office.
• He was diagnosed with pneumonia after contracting the coronavirus. He was hospitalised on March 20 after developing a fever and breathing troubles, and was put on a ventilator


10. Postponed Tokyo Olympics set to start from July 23 next year

• The Tokyo Olympics will begin on July 23 next year, organisers said on Monday, after the coronavirus forced the historic decision to postpone the Games until 2021.
• The announcement comes less than a week after the organisers were forced to delay the Games under heavy pressure from athletes and sports federations as the global outbreak worsened.
• `The Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8, 2021.
• The Paralympics will be held from August 24 to September 5, Tokyo 2020 chief Yoshiro Mori told reporters at a hastily arranged evening news conference.


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Shahzad F. Malik

Shahzad F. Malik

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