Notifications

Current Affairs

GK and Current Affairs Updates

Select Date
Tags:
Hindi

Important Current Affairs 4th January 2022

INTERNATIONAL

France takes over EU presidency as national election looms

• France has assumed the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union with effect from January 01, 2022. The country will continue to hold the EU presidency for the next six months till June 30, 2022. This is the 13th time that France has taken over the rotating presidency. The motto of France as EU President is “recovery, strength, belonging.”

• France will work to place the continent’s digitization and climate protection at the forefront. The presidency of the EU rotates every six months among the member states of the 27-nation bloc. Upon the completion of six months presidency, France will be replaced by the Czech Republic.

NATIONAL

Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of Major Dhyan Chand Sports University in Uttar Pradesh's Meerut

• Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of Major Dhyan Chand Sports University in Meerut. The University will be established at Salawa and Kaili villages of Sardhana town in Meerut at an estimated cost of about 700 Crore rupees. The University will have the capacity of training 1080 sportspersons including 540 female and 540 male sportspersons.

• The Sports University will be equipped with modern and state-of-the-art sports infrastructure including synthetic Hockey ground, Football ground, Basketball, Volleyball, Handball, Kabaddi ground, Lawn tennis court, Gymnasium hall, Synthetic running stadium, Swimming pool, Multipurpose hall, and a Cycling Velodrome.

• It will also house facilities for Shooting, Squash, Gymnastics, Weightlifting, Archery, Canoeing, and Kayaking, among other facilities with the capacity of training.

Nirmala Sitharaman chairs 46th GST council meet ahead of Union Budget 2022

• The GST Council’s 46th meeting was held in New Delhi under the chairmanship of Union Finance & Corporate Affairs Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman. The GST Council has recommended deferring the decision to change the rates in textiles recommended in the 45th GST Council meeting. Consequently, the existing GST rates of 5 % instead of 12% in textile sector would continue.

• This convention attains special significance as it comes days ahead of Sitharaman presenting the much-anticipated Union Budget 2022-23 on February 1, for which she has been holding a series of pre-budget consultations with stakeholders.

First electric boat built for Kochi Water Metro Project handed over to KMRL

• In Kerala, the first battery-powered electric boat built for the Kochi Water Metro Project was handed over to the Kochi Metro Rail Limited. The fully air-conditioned boat is among the 23 boats being built by the Cochin Shipyard for the 747-crore rupee Kochi Water Metro project. Kochi Water Metro system will have 78 ferries, linking 38 terminals spread over 76 route kilometres.

• The battery-powered water metro boat can carry 100 passengers. KMRL said it was for the first time in the world a centrally controlled integrated water transport system with a large fleet is powered by the battery.

Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan launched 100-day reading campaign 'Padhe Bharat'

• Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has launched a 100-day reading campaign ‘Padhe Bharat. The launch of the 100 Days Reading Campaign is in alignment with the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 which lays emphasis on the promotion of joyful reading culture for children by ensuring the availability of age-appropriate reading books for children in local/mother tongue/regional/tribal language.

• The Minister while launching the campaign has underlined the importance of reading that children need to develop to ensure continuous and lifelong learning. He also reinforced that the habit of reading, if inculcated at an early age, helps in brain development and enhances imagination and provide a conducive learning environment for children.

OBITURY

Hindi film producer Vijay Galani passed away 

• Bollywood film producer Vijay Galani has passed away. He was suffering from blood cancer and was in London for seeking treatment. He is known for producing films like Salman Khan’s Suryavanshi (1992), Govinda and Manisha Koirala’s Achanak (1998), Akshay Kumar’s Ajnabee (2001), Paresh Rawal and Mallika Sherawat’s Bachke Rehna Re Baba (2005), Salman Khan’s Veer (2010). His last production venture was Vidyut Jammwal and Shruti Haasan’s The Power (2021).

IMPORTANT DAYS

World Braille Day 2022: 4th January 

• World Braille Day is observed globally on 4th January since 2019. The day aims to recognize the right of access to braille by blind people and raise awareness of the importance of braille as a means of communication in the full realization of the human rights for blind and partially sighted people. The day is marked remembering the birth anniversary of Louis Braille, the inventor of Braille – for people with visual disabilities. Louis Braille was born on 4th January 1809 in the town of Coupvray in northern France.

• Braille is a tactile representation of alphabetic and numerical symbols using six dots to represent each letter and number, and even musical, mathematical and scientific symbols. Braille (named after its inventor in 19th century France, Louis Braille) is used by blind and partially sighted people to read the same books and periodicals as those printed in a visual font.

BANKING AND ECONOMIC

Tech Mahindra to acquire 100% stake in Allyis India and Green Investments LLC

• Tech Mahindra has approved a proposal for the acquisition of a 100 per cent stake in Allyis India and Green Investments, for a total consideration of up to USD 125 million. The acquisition will bolster Tech Mahindra’s capabilities in Digital Experience Solutions, Learning & Development, Marketing, Instructional Design; Engineering: Cloud & Automation, BI & Analytics, Technical support services.

• Tech Mahindra will pay total consideration of up to $125 million, including employment-related and performance-related earnouts, as per a regulatory update filed with the exchanges. Allyis India Pvt Ltd and Green Investments LLC offer technology consulting and managed services for organisations to help reduce costs, improve performance, and meet their objectives. Allyis India Pvt Ltd was incorporated in 2018 whole Green Investments LLC was incorporated in 2013.

Capital markets regulator SEBI reconstituted its Primary Market Advisory Committee

• Capital markets regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India has restructured its primary market advisory committee on data. The committee aims to measure pertaining to areas such as securities market data access and privacy. Sebi has appointed Professor at National Law University, Delhi and former chairperson, Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India S Sahoo as Panel Head. Earlier this panel was headed by Madhabi Puri Buch, an ex-whole time member of Sebi.

• The scope of the work of the committee includes identifying segment-wise data perimeters, data needs and gaps, recommending data privacy and data access regulations applicable to market data. It is responsible for recommending appropriate policy for access to securities market data.

• In addition, the committee recommends standardization of data definitions; data identification logic ( usage of uniform codes for identifying and storing data – raw data and derived data) and data validation techniques (single source of truth, validation).

GST Collection at Rs 1.29 Lakh Crore in December, 13% Higher Than December 2020

• GST revenue collected in December 2021 was over Rs 1.29 lakh crore, 13 per cent higher than the same month in 2020. The gross GST revenue collected in the month of December 2021 is ₹ 1,29,780 crore, of which CGST is ₹ 22,578 crore, SGST is ₹ 28,658 crore, IGST is Rs 69,155 crore (including Rs 37,527 crores collected on import of goods) and cess is Rs 9,389 crore.

• Though the collection was lower than Rs 1.31 lakh crore mopped up in November, December is the sixth month in a row when revenue from goods sold and services rendered stood at over Rs 1 lakh crore. The average monthly gross GST collection for the third quarter (October-December) of the current year has been Rs 1.30 lakh crore against the average monthly collection of Rs 1.10 lakh crore and Rs 1.15 lakh crore in the first and second quarter, respectively.

Read More
Read Less
View All Comments

Important Current Affairs 3rd January 2022

INTERNATIONAL

Shanghai opens longest metro line in the world, 831km network length

• Shanghai has opened two new metro lines, upholding its rank as the city with the largest Metro network in the world. With the new lines, the total length of Shanghai’s metro network has extended to 831 km, continuing to be the longest in the world. China’s Shanghai opened two new metro lines – Line 14 and Phase One of Line 18.

• The opening of the two new lines will bring the total number of fully automatic metro lines in Shanghai to five, with an operating length of 167 km, ranking first in the world for the first time. The city will now enjoy 20 metro lines with 508 stations, 83 of which are transfer ones.

NATIONAL

Naveen Patnaik  launched Digital Life Certificate system for pensioners 2022

• Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has launched an online service for the verification of identity and submission of life certificates for pensioners of the state government. The chief minister virtually launched the new initiative while attending the orientation programme for newly recruited 153 officers of Odisha Civil Services.

• Identification and life certificates can now be submitted by the pensioners using an artificial intelligence-based video-verification process.

• It will be of immense help to the pensioners as they can submit their identification and life certificates digitally, without visiting any government office simply by using their mobile phones.

Telangana Governor inaugurates Numaish 2022 in Hyderabad

• Telangana Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan on Saturday inaugurated the 81st All India Industrial Exhibition ‘Numaish 2022’ organized by the Exhibition Society in Hyderabad.

• Telangana Home Minister Mahmood Ali was invited as the chief guest at the event.

• Addressing the event, Soundararajan said, “As a doctor, I am very happy because a COVID-19 vaccination campaign is also conducted here. I really appreciate the efforts taken for the safety of the people of Telangana.”

Appointment & Resignation

Vinod Kannan takes over as Vistara CEO

• Vistara on Saturday said that Vinod Kannan took over as the chief executive officer (CEO) of the airline. Kannan replaced Leslie Thng who was the CEO from July 16, 2017 to December 31, 2021.

• It added that Deepak Rajawat has been elevated to take up the role of Vistara’s chief commercial officer from Saturday. “Kannan started his stint with Vistara as the Chief Strategy Officer in June 2019 and took over as Chief Commercial Officer in January 2020 with responsibility for developing, executing, and sustaining

• Vistara’s corporate strategy and ensuring the airline’s commercial success,” it mentioned.

Baldev Prakash named as MD & CEO of J&K Bank

• Baldev Prakash has been appointed as the Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer (MD & CEO) of Jammu & Kashmir Bank for three years. His appointment will be effective from the date of taking charge or April 10, 2022, whichever is earlier. Apart from him, R K Chhibber has been appointed as an additional director on the board of the bank.

• Prakash has over 30 years of experience in banking. He had joined SBI as a probationary officer in 1991 and was the Chief General Manager (Digital and Transaction Banking Marketing Department) at SBI, Mumbai. The appointment is effective from the date of taking charge or April 10, 2022, whichever is earlier.

OBITURY

World-renowned Kenyan conservationist Richard Leakey dies at 77

• World-renowned paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey, who unearthed evidence that helped prove humankind evolved in Africa, died on Sunday at the age of 77, Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta confirmed in a statement.

IMPORTANT DAYS

DRDO Foundation Day on 1st January 2022

• The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has observed the 64th Foundation Day of its establishment on January 01, 2022. DRDO was established in 1958 with just 10 laboratories to enhance the research work in the Defence sector. At that time, it was tasked with designing and developing cutting edge defence technologies for the Indian Armed Forces.

• As of now, DRDO is working in multiple cutting edge military technology areas, which include aeronautics, armaments, combat vehicles, electronics, instrumentation, engineering systems, missiles, materials, naval systems, advanced computing, simulation, cyber, life sciences and other technologies for defence.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Danish Siddiqui posthumously gets Mumbai Press Club's RedInk Award

• Photojournalist Danish Siddiqui, who died during an assignment in Afghanistan, has been posthumously awarded as the ‘Journalist of the Year’ for 2020 by the Mumbai Press Club. CJI N V Ramana presented the annual ‘RedInk Awards for Excellence in Journalism’. He presented the prestigious award to Siddiqui “for his spectrum of investigative and impactful news photography”. Danish Siddiqui’s wife Frederike Siddiqui received the award.

• Senior journalist Prem Shankar Jha, 83, was bestowed with the lifetime achievement award “for his long and distinguished career of incisive and analytical writing”. The Mumbai Press Club instituted The RedInk Awards a decade ago to recognise good investigative and feature writing and raise the bar of journalism in the country.

BANKING AND ECONOMIC

Govt approves 19th tranche of electoral bonds for sale on January 1

• The government has approved the issuance of the 19th tranche of electoral bonds, which will be open for sale from January 1 to 10, 2022, ahead of assembly elections in five states Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Goa. In the 19th tranche of sale, the State Bank of India (SBI), has been authorised to issue and encash electoral bonds through its 29 specialised branches. There is no limit on the number of bonds an individual or company can purchase. An electoral bond will be valid for 15 days.

• Electoral bonds have been pitched as an alternative to cash donations made to political parties as part of efforts to bring transparency in political funding. However, Opposition parties have been raising concerns about alleged opaqueness in funding through such bonds.

Read More
Read Less

Important Current Affairs 2nd January 2022

INTERNATIONAL

Australia to rename islands to Honor Queen Elizabeth on platinum jubilee

• Australia will rename Aspen Island in Canberra's Lake Burley Griffin as part of June 2022 national and community events to celebrate 70th anniversary of the accession of Queen Elizabeth II to the British throne, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Saturday.

• "Seventy years of service is a truly immense achievement, and we are proud to join with other Commonwealth nations to celebrate this milestone... Aspen Island in Canberra's Lake Burley Griffin, the home of the National Carillon, will be renamed Queen Elizabeth II.

• According to Morrison, celebrations will include opening of new Queen Elizabeth Water Gardens, the lighting of the Queen's Platinum Jubilee Beacon in Canberra, the release of commemorative stamps and coins, as well as illuminating monuments all around Australia.

Chinese Ministry Launches Five-Year Plan to Become Global Robotics Hub

• China has announced a five-year roadmap to achieve its goal of becoming a global robotics innovation hub by the year 2025. China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology revealed operating income from the country’s robotics industry is expected to grow by around 20% per year between 2021 and 2025. From 2016 to 2020, the sector expanded at an average growth rate of 15%. Last year, operating income surpassed 100 billion yuan ($15.69 billion) for the first time.

• To achieve its goal by 2025 of becoming a worldwide robotics innovation centre, China has proposed a strategy concentrating on improvements to essential components such as servo motors and control panels. As per the 2021 World Robot Report, South Korea, Singapore, and Japan were the top three most automated countries in Asia-Pacific.

NATIONAL

Centre approves 9544 Cr grant to Jharkhand under Jal Jeevan Mission

• 315 water supply schemes of Rs. 9,544 Crore approved under Jal Jeevan Mission for Jharkhand. These schemes will providetap water supply to about 8 lakh rural households in 4,424 villages of the State.

• On 15th August 2019, at the time of launch of Jal Jeevan Mission, only 3.45 lakh (5.83%) rural homes in Jharkhand had tap water supply. In 28 months, despite C-19 pandemic and lockdown disruptions, the State has provided tap water connection to 6.73 lakh (11.38%) households. As on date, out of 59.23 lakh rural household in the State, 10.18 lakh (17.20%) are getting tap water supply in their homes.

UP's Jhansi Railway Station Gets A New Name, Called Veerangana Laxmibai Station

• Yogi Adityanath, Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh has announced that the government of UP has renamed the Jhansi Railway Station, in Jhansi, UP as “Veerangana Laxmibai Railway Station” after Rani Laxmibai. The announcement was made by UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. A notification to this effect has been issued by the UP government and the Railways has started preparations to implement the change. Earlier the Mughalsarai Railway station was renamed as Pt. Deen Dayal Upadhyaya junction and the Faizabad Railway station as Ayodhya Cantt.

Sikkim Governor renamed Jawaharlal Nehru Road as ‘Narendra Modi Marg’

• Governor of Sikkim, Ganga Prasad, has named a new road Narendra Modi Marg. The Governor viewed the road under Kabi Lungchok from Kyongsala, 4th mile. This is an alternative to Jawahar Lal Nehru Marg. The National Monument at National Highway 310 was built by Border Roads Organization. It will be easier for Indian tourists to reach Nathula Border. The stretch, constructed by Border Roads Organisation, has reduced the distance between Gangtok and Tsomgo lake by 15 km.

APPOINTMENT & RESIGNATION

VK tripathi appointed as chairman and CEO of Railway board

• The Indian Railways has appointed VK Tripathi as chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Railway Board. He is currently working as the general manager of North-Eastern Railway, Gorakhpur.

• Tripathi’s appointment has been approved by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) and he is currently General Manager, North-Eastern Railway. He will replace Suneet Sharma, a 1982 batch IRSME officer.

• A career railway officer, Tripathi did his B.Tech (Electrical Engineering) from Roorkee and joined the railways through the Indian Railway Service of Electrical Engineers (IRSEE) batch of 1983.

• His first posting was as an assistant electrical engineer for the Northern Railway.

Asheesh Pandey joins Bank of Maharashtra as executive director

• Shri Asheesh Pandey joined as Executive Director, Bank of Maharashtra (BoM) today on 31st December, 2021. Prior to joining BoM, Shri Asheesh Pandey was Chief General Manager & Chief Operations Officer (COO) at Union Bank of India (UBI). Shri Asheesh Pandey has a progressive professional career spanning more than 24 years and over these years have handled a diversified portfolio ranging from Credit, Credit Monitoring, Treasury & Merchant Banking, Foreign Transactions & Joint Ventures, Marketing & Customer Relationships and Banking Operations.

• Shri Asheesh Pandey is a Mechanical Engineer (Hons) with Post Graduation in Management (Hons) with specialisation in Finance & Marketing.

Online travel company EaseMyTrip has appointed actors Vijay Raaz and Varun Sharma as its brand ambassadors

• Bollywood actors Vijay Raaz & Varun Sharma have been named as brand ambassadors for EaseMyTrip.com (Easy Trip Planners Ltd), an online travel company based in India. EaseMyTrip founded by Nishant Pitti and Rikant Pitti in 2008 was started as the Business-to-Business (B2B) portal and entered into the business-to-consumer (B2C) segment in 2011.

• Raaz and Sharma will be coming together as a duo for the first time for any brand campaign. The actors with their mass appeal and strong connection with the audience will complement the brand’s image. The company added that the actors are admired by fans for their genuine and down-to-earth personalities and their ability to make their acts memorable. They are also known for their impeccable comic timing and both actors have created a niche in the market.

IMPORTANT DAYS

DRDO celebrates its 64th foundation day on 1st January 2022

• Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is celebrating its 64th foundation day today. It was on this day in 1958 when DRDO was formed to make India strong and self-reliant in terms of science and technology and especially in military technologies.

• Defence Minister Rajnath Singh today wished to all Defence Research and Development Organisation, DRDO scientists and personnel on their 64th Raising Day. In a tweet, Mr Singh said, they are working tirelessly towards strengthening India’s defence capabilities and making the country self-reliant in defence sector. He hoped that the DRDO scientists and personnel will keep serving the nation with the same zeal.

• In the span of 63 years the organization has transformed the landscape of defence research and development in the country. Talking exclusively to All India Radio, the Chairman of DRDO Dr G. Satheesh Reddy said that the last year was the year of major breakthroughs and accomplishments even under the difficult situation posed due to C-19.

Read More
Read Less

Important Current Affairs 1st January 2022

NATIONAL

India votes in favour of UNSC resolution to renew mandate of counter-terrorism committee executive directorate

• India will chair the Counter-Terrorism Committee of UNSC in January 2022 after 10 years. The Counter-Terrorism Committee was established by Security Council resolution 1373 adopted unanimously on 28 September 2001 in the wake of the 9/11 terror attacks in the US. The Committee was tasked with monitoring the implementation of resolution 1373 which requested countries to implement a number of measures aimed at enhancing their legal and institutional ability to counter terrorist activities at home and around the world.

• This includes taking steps to criminalize the financing of terrorism, freezing any funds related to persons involved in acts of terrorism, denying all forms of financial support for terrorist groups, suppressing the provision of safe haven, sustenance or support for terrorists and sharing information with other governments on any groups practising or planning terrorist acts.

Jawaharlal Nehru Road renamed as 'Narendra Modi Marg' by Sikkim Guv

• Governor of Sikkim, Ganga Prasad, has named a new road Narendra Modi Marg. The Governor viewed the road under Kabi Lungchok from Kyongsala, 4th mile. This is an alternative to Jawahar Lal Nehru Marg. The National Monument at National Highway 310 was built by Border Roads Organization. It will be easier for Indian tourists to reach Nathula Border. The stretch, constructed by Border Roads Organisation, has reduced the distance between Gangtok and Tsomgo lake by 15 km.

SPORTS

South African Wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock announces retirement from Test cricket

• South Africa’s wicketkeeper-batter Quinton de Kock has announced his retirement from Test cricket with immediate effect late. His announcement came just hours after South Africa’s 113-run defeat to India in the first Test of the three-match series.

• De Kock cited his intentions to spend more time with his growing family for the timing. In a statement, the 29-year-old de Kock said he made his decision in order to have more time to spend with his family. De Kock and his wife Sasha are expecting their first child in the coming days.

NewZealand’s senior batter Ross Taylor announces retirement from international cricket

• Veteran New Zealand batter, Ross Taylor has announced retirement from international cricket at the end of the ongoing domestic season. Taylor hence will play his final appearance in the second Test against Bangladesh, where will equal Daniel Vettori’s record of 112 tests for New Zealand. He will be part of the one-day international series in Australia. He is the first cricketer to play more than 100 matches for New Zealand in all 3 formats.

Indian bowler Jasprit Bumrah 100 Test Wickets

• Jasprit Bumrah has achieved the milestone of picking 100 wickets away from home in 22 Test matches. Van der Dussen became Bumrah’s 100th Test victim in overseas conditions. The 28-year-old now has 105 wickets, out of which 101 have come away from home. Bumrah, who made his Test debut in South Africa in 2018, has played 25 Tests, 23 of which have come on the road.

Indian bowler Mohammed Shami becomes 11th Indian bowler to take 200 wickets in Test cricket

• Mohammed Shami became just the 11th Indian bowler to claim 200 wickets in Test cricket in just 55 test matches. During this process, he became the only 5th Indian pacer to bag 200 wickets in the purest format of the game. Also, Shami is the third fastest Indian pacer to reach this milestone as Kapil Dev and Javagal Srinath bagged 200 Test wickets in 50 and 54 Tests respectively.

APPOINTMEN & RESIGNATION

ITBP DG Arora to hold additional charge of Sashastra Seema Bal

• ITBP director general Sanjay Arora will hold the additional charge of another border guarding force Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) as the latter’s chief Kumar Rajesh Chandra is set to retire on December 31. Arora, a 1988-batch officer of Tamil Nadu cadre, was appointed the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) DG in August and he took charge of the India-China LAC guarding force on September 1. The SSB is primarily tasked to guard unfenced Indian borders with Nepal and Bhutan.

Anupam Ray to be India's new permanent representative at UN Conference on Disarmament

• Senior diplomat Anupam Ray has been appointed as India’s next permanent representative to the UN Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. Ray, a 1994-batch Indian Foreign Service officer, is currently serving as a joint secretary in the MEA’s headquarters in Delhi. Ray will succeed Pankaj Sharma. Sharma, a 1991-batch Indian Foreign Service officer, has been appointed as India’s next ambassador to Mexico.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

 All India Co-ordinated Research Project (AICRP) on poultry breeding

• The All India Co-ordinated Research Project (AICRP) on poultry breeding, Mannuthy, under the Kerala Veterinary and Animal Science University (KVASU), bagged the national breed conservation award for 2021. The centre received the prestigious award from ICAR – The National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources (NBAGR) for the conservation and research activities on the Tellicherry breed, the only registered native chicken breed from the State.

• The centre started conservation of the Tellicherry breed in 2014. Through scientific selection and management, the breed began laying eggs as early as in five months and the annual egg production increased to 160-170 eggs.

BANKING AND ECONOMIC

SBI acquires 9.95% stake in India International Exchange (IFSC)

• State Bank of India will acquire up to 9.95 per cent stake in India International Clearing Corporation (IFSC) Ltd subject to a maximum investment of Rs 34.03 crore. The Clearing Corporation is a GIFT City (Gandhinagar, Gujarat) based Market Infrastructure Institution (MII). The Corporation is the first international clearing corporation to be set up at Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT) International Financial Services Centre (IFSC). The Clearing Corporation acts as a central counterparty providing clearing & settlement and risk management services to India International Exchange (IFSC) Ltd.

Read More
Read Less
View All Comments

Important Current Affairs 31st December 2021

NATIONAL

PM Narendra Modi launches blockchain-based digital degrees at IIT Kanpur convocation

• Under the National Blockchain Project, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched blockchain-based digital degrees at the 54th Convocation Ceremony of IIT Kanpur. Later Prime Minister also inaugurated the completed section of the Kanpur Metro Rail Project and the Bina-Panki Multiproduct Pipeline Project. These digital degrees can be verified globally and are unforgeable.

• The blockchain technology being used by IIT Kanpur to award digital degrees has been developed in-house. It is being touted as a revolutionary technology for the education sector. The technology is already being used in the financial sector. The technology has been developed by the institute under the National Blockchain Project.

PM inaugurates Bina (MP)-Panki (UP) Multiproduct pipeline project, Total cost of the project is Rs.1524 crore

• Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inaugurated the 356 Km long Bina Refinery (Madhya Pradesh)- POL Terminal at Panki (Kanpur, UP) Multiproduct pipeline project ( capacity of 45 million metric tonnes per annum) with an outlay of Rs 1524 crore (Rs. 1227 crores in UP and Rs. 297 crores in MP). The project has been completed and commissioned one month ahead of the approved completion schedule of December 2021 (3 years from PNGRB authorisation) and within the approved cost. It will provide for safe and efficient evacuation of products from Bina Refinery and also improve the availability of products in Eastern U.P, Central U.P., Northern Bihar and Southern Uttarakhand.

• PM has also inaugurated the completed section of the Kanpur Metro Rail Project and undertook a metro ride from the IIT metro station to Geeta Nagar. The entire length of the Metro Rail Project in Kanpur is 32 Km and is being built at a cost of around ₹11,000 crores. PM also attended the 54th Convocation Ceremony of IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) Kanpur.

APPOINTMENT & RESIGNATION

CP Goyal as Director-General of Forests & Special Secretary

• Indian Forest Service officer, Chandra Prakash Goyal has been appointed as the Director-General of Forests & Special Secretary (DGF&SS), Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change. Goyal, a 1986 batch IFS officer was previously the Principal Chief Conservator of Forest under Uttar Pradesh Department of Forest.

• The Appointments Committee of the Union Cabinet approved the appointment of the IFoS officer. He had returned to UP after being on central deputation as Joint Secretary in the Indian Department of Biotechnology.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Sahitya Akademi Announces Winners Of Yuva Puraskar, Bal Sahitya Puraskar 2021

• Sahitya Akademi announced its prestigious Sahitya Akademi Awards, Yuva Puraskar and Bal Sahitya Puraskar 2021 in various languages. According to the board, an engraved copper plate, shawl and an amount of Rs 1 lakh will be given to the main Sahitya Akademi prize winner and an engraved copper plate and an amount of Rs 50,000 each will be given to the Yuva Puraskar and Bal Sahitya Puraskar.

• The Sahitya Akademi Award 2021 was given in 20 Indian languages, the winner of Gujarati, Maithili, Manipuri, and Urdu languages will be announced at a later date. Seven books of poetry, two novels, five books of short stories, two plays, one book each of biography, autobiography, criticism, and epic poetry have won the Sahitya Akademi Awards 2021. Author, Namita Gokhale was awarded for her novel Things to Leave Behind.

RANKING

ARIIA rankings: IIT Madras bags No. 1 spot for third consecutive year

• IIT Madras has bagged the first position in the Atal Ranking of Institutions on Innovation Achievements (ARIIA) 2021, for the third consecutive year, under the category of CFTIs/ Central Universities/ Institute of National Importance (Technical). The third edition of the ARIIA ranking was dominated by the IITs in the centrally funded institution category. Seven IITs are on the top-10 list. IIT-Madras is followed by IIT Bombay, IIT Delhi, IT Kanpur, and IIT Roorkee. The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru bagged the sixth position in the category.

• In the state and deemed to be universities category, Panjab University (Chandigarh) topped the ranking followed by Delhi Technological University, and Netaji Subhas University of Technology (Delhi).

• In the government engineering colleges category, the College of Engineering in Pune stood first, followed by PSG College of Technology in Tamil Nadu, and LD College of Engineering in Gujarat.

BANKING AND ECONOMIC

India welcomes Egypt as member of New Development Bank of BRICS

• Egypt added as the fourth new member of BRICS New Development Bank. Bangladesh, UAE, and Uruguay joined BRICS New Development Bank in September 2021. Membership expansion enables New Development Bank to position itself as a premier development institution for emerging economies. BRICS New Development Bank is a multilateral bank that was established by Brazil, Russia, China, India, and South Africa to finance sustainable development and infrastructure projects.

Real GDP likely to sustain 9% growth rate in FY22 & 23: Icra

• ICRA Credit rating agency has expected India’s real gross domestic product (GDP) will grow with 9% rate in fiscal years 2022 and 2023. The Indian economy has grown at 8.4 percent in the second quarter of the current fiscal year. ICRA said the growth momentum is not enough to confirm a change in the Monetary Policy stance in the February 2022 review. The Future Expectation Index continued to display optimism because of improving the overall economic situation.

Axis Bank is 2nd largest in PoS machines in India

• Axis Bank has become the second-largest merchant-acquiring bank in the country, leapfrogging two spaces during 2021 by installing over two lakh card-swipe machines during the year. This is part of the bank’s ‘Axis One’ strategy where it approaches the customers by offering its entire gamut of products instead of a standalone service.

• Axis Bank’s strategy to increase the number of merchants is to offer the latest in technology to them and address pain points. For instance, the bank installs Android PoS machines and has also come out with a printer-less compact machine. On the agenda are bring-your-own-device (BYOD) solutions that will enable the use of regular smartphones with an attachment for accepting cards.

IndusInd Bank has announced the launch of 'Green Fixed Deposits'

• IndusInd Bank has announced the launch of ‘green fixed deposits’, whereby the deposit proceeds will be used to finance projects and firms supporting the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A green deposit is a fixed-term deposit for investors looking to invest their surplus cash reserves in environmentally friendly projects. These deposits will be offered to both retail & corporate customers.

• The Bank will use the proceeds from these deposits to finance a wide array of sectors falling under the SDG category including, energy efficiency, renewable energy, green transport, sustainable food, agriculture, forestry, waste management and greenhouse gas reduction.

• The interest on the Green deposit remains attractive with an additional benefit of 50 basis points for senior citizens. In all ways, it is similar to a regular bank deposit but in addition, depositors will be issued a ‘Green’ certificate as well as an ‘Assurance’ certificate confirming the end-use of deposit proceeds at the end of the financial year.”

RBI releases report on trend and progress of banking in India

• India’s central bank, RBI has released the latest iteration of its annual report on the financial performance of the country. In its report, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) details that, despite the devastation caused by the COVID-19 outbreak in India, the financial performance of banks has improved, citing a fall in the gross non-performing asset ratio for scheduled commercial banks (SCBs).

• The report, titled ‘Report on Trend and Progress of Banking in India,’ also showed how a rise in profitability of SCBs in 2020-21 was driven less by an increase in income but more via reductions in expenditure.

• The gross non-performing assets (GNPAs) ratio of SCBs fell from 8.2 per cent at the end of March 2020 to 7.3 per cent in March 2021. This decreased further to 6.9 per cent at the end of September 2021.

Read More
Read Less

Important Current Affairs 30th December 2021

INTERNATIONAL

China launched a new satellite 

• China has launched a new satellite with a camera capable of taking photos of the ground with a resolution of five meters, according to the National Space Administration of China (CNSA). The satellite, called “Ziyuan-1 02E” or “Five Meter 02 Optical Satellite”. Beijing time by a Long March-4C rocket from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in Beijing Province. Shanxi (northern China). This is the 39th launch of the Longue Marche-4C rocket and the 403rd launch of the entire Long March series.

• The Ziyuan-1 02E weighs approximately 2.5 kilograms and is equipped with infrared, near-infrared and hyperspectral cameras. The cameras can take panchromatic color images of the Earth.

• The satellite will work with the five-meter optical satellite 01 and will reduce the revisiting time of Chinese territory from three days to two days.

The first-ever bus-train dual-mode vehicle launched in Japan

• Japan has introduced a minibus lookalike world’s first dual-mode vehicle (DMV) in its town of Kaiyo. The vehicle can run on normal rubber tyres on the road but its steel wheels, which are in its underbelly, descend when it hits the rail tracks. The DMV can carry up to 21 passengers and runs at a speed of 60km/h on rail tracks and can go as fast as around 100km/h on public roads.

• The front tyres are lifted off the track and the rear wheels stay down to propel the DMV onto the railway. This feature of effectively changing into a train-like module easily on a rail track is the first of its kind. Powered by diesel, the small fleet of vehicles comes in different colours. It runs along part of the coast of Shikoku island in southern Japan, connecting several small towns and offering passengers attractive seaside scenery.

NATIONAL

Telangana tops in implementation of Rurban Mission

• Telangana has secured 1st place among the 34 states and Union Territories that implement the Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM). Tamil Nadu and Gujarat have secured 2nd and 3rd place on the list respectively. In the Ranking of the Cluster, among the 295 clusters, the Ryakal cluster of Sangareddy and the Jukkal cluster of Kamareddy in Telangana has secured the 1st and 2nd position respectively. The Aibawk cluster of Aizawl in Mizoram has secured the 3rd position.

• The Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM) follows the vision of “Development of a cluster of villages that preserve and nurture the essence of rural community life with focus on equity and inclusiveness without compromising with the facilities perceived to be essentially urban in nature, thus creating a cluster of “Rurban Villages”. The objective of the Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM) is to stimulate local economic development, enhance basic services, and create well planned Rurban clusters.

Haryana’s CM Manohar Lal Khattar launched Haryana Kaushal Rozgar Nigam portal

• The Chief Minister of Haryana, Manohar Lal Khattar has launched the ‘Haryana Kaushal Rozgar Nigam portal’ and announced to set up the Atal Park & Smriti Kendra in Gurugram, Haryana. The CM also honoured 78 officers and employees for delivering the best services in various fields. He also launched a magazine ‘Vyavastha Parivartan Se Susashan’ and the 2022 official calendar.

• Now all the problems of the public are being solved easily through CM Window. So far, more than 8.5 lakh issues have been resolved. The government has abolished the practice of remand in the cases of the Revenue Department. Only a maximum of two appeals can be made in this. Apart from this, a run through the system has been implemented to accelerate the file work. The government has abolished the contractual practice in the recruitments made in the departments.

PM Modi launches Rs 11,000 Cr hydropower projects in Himachal

• Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inaugurated and laid the foundation of the hydropower projects worth Rs 11000 crore in Mandi, Himachal Pradesh. He inaugurated the Sawra-Kuddu Hydro Power Project, a 111 MW Project which has been built at a cost of around Rs 2,080 crore. He also laid the foundation stone of the Renukaji Dam project which has been kept pending for around 3 decades. The 40 MW project will be built at a cost of around Rs 7,000 crore. Other Projects are: Luhri Stage 1 Hydro Power Project and the Dhaulasidh Hydro Power Project, the first hydropower project of the Hamirpur district.

SPORTS

Nitesh Kumar wins double gold at 4th Para-Badminton National Championship in Odisha

• Nitesh Kumar won doubled gold at the 4th Para-Badminton National Championship, which concluded in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. Haryana’s Nitesh along with his partner Tarun Dhillon defeated World No. 1 Paralympic Games gold medallist Pramod Bhagat and Manoj Sarkar in straight sets 21-19, 21-11 in the Men’s doubles finals to win the gold.

• Earlier, Nitesh also won the gold medal in the Men’s singles category. World No 1 SL3 Para-Badminton player Parul Parmar from Gujarat also secured gold while Mandeep Kaur from Uttarakhand won Silver and Mansi won bronze.

Uttar Pradesh Hockey win Junior National Championship 2021

• Uttar Pradesh has crowned the winners of the 11th Junior National Men’s Hockey Championship following a 3-1 victory over Chandigarh in the final at Kovilpatti, Tamil Nadu. Tournament top scorer Sharda Nand Tiwari opened the scoring for Uttar Pradesh. Uttar Pradesh Hockey maintained its unbeaten record. In the 3rd/4th Place playoff match, the Hockey Association of Odisha edged out Hockey Haryana 3 – 2 in a closely contested affair to clinch 3rd place in the competition.

APPOINTMENT & RESIGNATION

IAS Radhika Jha appointed CEO of Energy Efficiency Services

• Radhika Jha has been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer in state-run Energy Efficiency Services (EESL). EESL is a joint venture between NTPC, Power Grid, Power Finance Corp and REC, working to promote energy efficiency in the country.

• Prior to the new posting, the IAS officer was serving as Secretary to the Government of Uttarakhand for the Education Department. She took charge of the post in July this year and navigated the operational guidelines for resuming classes post COVID. Also, Jha played a key role in formulating a detailed strategy to cover up for the learning loss. Earlier, Radhika Jha also led the Centre’s Integrated Power Development Scheme as Executive Director in Power Finance Corp, before moving to the state.

OBITURY

Greece's former president Karolos Papoulias dies at 92

• Veteran Greek politician Karolos Papoulias, who served as president at the height of the economic crisis of the 2010s, died. Papoulias, a longtime socialist lawmaker and minister, was close to Andreas Papandreou, the founder of the Socialist PASOK party. He served two terms between 2005 and 2015.

• Papoulias, who was also foreign minister in 1985-89 and 1993-96, was a high-ranking member of socialist PASOK party and a close associate of its late leader and former prime minister Andreas Papandreou.

EO Wilson, Known as 'Father of Biodiversity,' Dies at 92

• E.O. Wilson, the former Harvard University biologist and Pulitzer Prize winner whose study of ants and human behaviour made him one of the world’s most influential scientists and prompted his calls for action to protect millions of species on the planet, has passed away. He was 92. To protect Earth earned him the nickname “Darwin’s natural heir”.

• He was the author of hundreds of scientific papers and more than 30 books, two of which won him Pulitzer Prizes for nonfiction: 1978’s On Human Nature, and The Ants in 1990. The “father of biodiversity,” as Wilson was also known, attempted to unify the natural sciences with the humanities and said there was still time to reverse a “sixth extinction” of most species on the planet if environmental degradation was halted.

Read More
Read Less

Important Current Affairs 29th December 2021

INTERNATIONAL

Japan launches huge Inmarsat-6 F1 communications satellite into orbit

• Japan has launched Inmarsat-6 F1, a communication satellite, through a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) H-IIA204 rocket from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center that will enter geostationary orbit, about 22,240 miles (35,790 kilometres) above the earth. It is developed by the London-based company Inmarsat as a part of its next-generation satellite broadband service. The satellite is 12,060-pound (5,470 kilograms) and is the first of two ‘I-6’ spacecraft.

• Designated H-IIAF45, Inmarsat-6 F1 launch is Japan’s third orbital flight of 2021 and H-IIA’s second mission of the year, marking the 45th flight of the H-IIA vehicle overall.

Alia Bhatt named PETA India's Person of the Year

• People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India has named Bollywood star Alia Bhatt its 2021 Person of the Year. She is an animal lover and often shares pictures with her pets. This year, Alia Bhatt invested in Phool, the company behind Fleather, which is a vegan leather made from discarded temple flowers.

• Her vegan kidswear line, Ed-a-Mamma, also won a 2021 PETA India fashion award for helping to nurture kids’ love for animals and nature. Alia also starred in a pro-adoption PETA India campaign to help cats and dogs. She has used her position to call for stronger animal protection laws.

NATIONAL

Centre sets up high-level committee to examine possibility of lifting AFSPA from Nagaland

• The Government of India has decided to constitute a ‘five-member’ committee to look into the demand for withdrawal of Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act “AFSPA” in Nagaland. The committee headed by Vivek Joshi, the Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India, would submit its recommendations within 45 days. Additional Secretary in the Home Ministry Piyush Goyal will be its Member-Secretary. The Chief Secretary and DGP of Nagaland and the DGP of Assam Rifles will be the other members of the committee.

• Vivek Joshi, who is Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India, will head the five-member committee while Additional Secretary in the Union Home Ministry Piyush Goyal will be the member secretary of the panel. Other members of the committee are the chief secretary and DGP of Nagaland and the DGP of the Assam Rifles.

NITI Aayog releases fourth edition of state health index

• NITI Aayog has released the fourth edition of the State Health Index for 2019–20 that provides incremental performance in health outcomes and status. The index is developed by: NITI Aayog, World Bank, and Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW). The report, titled “Healthy States, Progressive India”, ranks states and Union Territories on their year-on-year incremental performance in health outcomes as well as their overall status. The index is being compiled and published since 2017. The reports aim to nudge states/UTs towards building robust health systems and improving service delivery.

• Among the ‘Larger States’, in terms of annual incremental performance, Uttar Pradesh, Assam and Telangana are the top three ranking states.

CEBR: India expected to become 3rd largest economy by 2031

• The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) from the United Kingdom has predicted that the Indian economy will become the world’s third-largest by the year 2031. In the year 2022, India is set to regain its sixth position in World Economic League Table (WELT) from France, as per CEBR.

• In the year 2020, India’s GDP had witnessed a contraction of 7.3% due to the C-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown leading to constraints on economic activity. India has witnessed a large scale spread of infections and has the third-highest death toll worldwide, behind US and Brazil. However, with the help of emergency aid and prompt measures taken by the Indian government, the country has recovered from the second wave of C-19.

• The annual league table also predicted that China will overtake the US to be the largest economy in 2030 (two years later than the forecast in 2021). The world economy is set to surpass $100 trillion for the first time in 2022.

Rajnath Singh inaugurates Brahmos missile manufacturing unit in Lucknow

• Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has laid the foundation stone of the BrahMos Aerospace cruise missile manufacturing unit in Lucknow. He also laid the foundation of DRDO Defence Technology and Test Centre in Lucknow. BrahMos Project will help in creating 5,500 fresh job opportunities.

• BrahMos is a joint venture between the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) of India and the NPOM of Russia. BrahMos missile derives its name from the Brahmaputra river of India and the Moskva river of Russia.

• All the three wings of the Indian defence forces have already inducted the BrahMos advanced weapon system.

• Recently, India successfully test-fired the air version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from the integrated test range of Chandipur.

APPOINTMENT & RESIGNATION

Government of India has appointed Atul Kumar Goel as the new MD and CEO of PNB

• The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved the appointment of Atul Kumar Goel, MD & CEO of UCO Bank, as MD & CEO of Punjab National Bank (PNB) with effect from February 1 next year. Goel will serve as PNB chief until December 31, 2024, which is his attaining the superannuation age. Goel will replace Mallikarjuna Rao, incumbent MD & CEO of PNB.  Rao was given a three-month extension that will end on January 31, 2022.

• Meanwhile, the ACC has appointed Soma Sankara Prasad, currently Deputy Managing Director at State Bank of India, as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer in UCO Bank. He will serve as MD & CEO of UCO Bank till the date of attaining the age of superannuation on May 31, 2023.

Aarati Krishnan: SEBI Member Of MF Advisory Panel

• Aarati Krishnan, Editorial Consultant with BusinessLine, has been inducted as a member of the Securities & Exchange Board of India’s Advisory Committee on Mutual Funds. The committee, chaired by Usha Thorat, former Deputy Governor of Reserve Bank of India, advises SEBI on matters related to mutual fund regulation to ensure investor protection, development of the industry and disclosure requirements. It suggests measures required to be taken to render the legal framework for mutual funds transparent and simple for investors and constituents.

• The committee has 24 members comprising CEOs of leading mutual fund houses as well as representatives from academia, exchanges, consumer interest groups, fund trustees, rating agencies, distribution firms and media.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Global Environment And Climate Action Citizen Award 2021: Viral Desai honoured

• Viral Sudhirbhai Desai, an industrialist from Surat, who is popularly known as the Greenman or green man of Gujarat has been honoured with the Global Environment and Climate Action Citizen Award 2021. Among the 28 personalities from 11 countries (which includes the United Kingdom(UK), the United States(US), New Zealand, France, and Malaysia,) who were honoured with this award, Viral Desai was the only Indian to win the honour for climate change.

BANKING AND ECONOMIC

Indipaisa partners with NSDL Payments Bank to launch a new Fintech platform targeting India's flourishing 63 million SME sector

• Indipaisa has signed a partnership agreement with NSDL Payments Bank to launch Financial Technology (Fintech) solutions targeting India’s 63 million Small & Mid-sized Enterprise (SME) sector. To empower SME owners & operators to provide facilities and services that help them grow businesses, comply with government tax laws and build a sustainable future.

• Indipaisa’s mission is to empower SME owners and operators to take charge of their finances as well as give them facilities and services that help them grow their businesses, comply with government tax laws, and build a better future for their families.

• Indipaisa plans to introduce multiple financial products and services customized from the ground up to match the specific needs of Indian SME owners and operators.

Read More
Read Less

Important Current Affairs 28th December 2021

INTERNATIONAL

Docprime launches India’s first ABDM integrated Health Locker

• Docprime tech has launched India’s first health locker integrated with Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM). ABDM was launched in August 2020 for developing an integrated digital health infrastructure in the country. ABDM integrated Health Locker will provide users a digital and self-consented health data management system without any charges. It will store and manage health records electronically.

• Users can create digital Health IDs for themselves and for their family members on ABDM integrated Health Locker.

NATIONAL

World Sangeet Tansen festival begin in Madhya Pradesh

• In Madhya Pradesh, the 97th edition of the World Sangeet Tansen festival started in Gwalior. A five-day World Sangeet Tansen festival starts from December 25 to December 30 in the city. The stage of the program has been constructed on the theme of the Siddhanath temple situated in Omkareshwar. Many artists not only from India but also from abroad will participate in the music festival.

• The first seven concerts were held at the stage prepared at the mausoleum of Tansen and the tomb of Mohammad Ghaus. The eighth concert will be held on the banks of the Jhilmil river, in Behat (Birthplace of Tansen) on December 30. The last brief concert will be held at Gwalior Fort on the same day.

Stalin goes green by launching 'Meendum Manjappai' scheme

• Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin has launched the ‘Meendum Manjappai’ scheme to promote the use of cloth bags by the public and discourage the use of plastic bags. This awareness campaign on using ‘yellow’ cloth bag or ‘manjapai’ as it is called in Tamil, is aimed at encouraging the people to return to the use of this eco-friendly bag and discard the plastic bags. The state government had enforced a ban on the production, use, storage, distribution, transportation or sale of 14 types of plastics with effect from January 1, 2019.

• A government committee has identified the single-use plastic (SUP) items to be banned based on an index of their utility and environmental impact. 

• The first category of SUP items proposed to be phased out are plastic sticks used in balloons, flags, candy, ice cream and earbuds, and thermocol that is used in decorations.

APPOINTMENT & RESIGNATION

Kamlesh Gandhi, CMD of MAS Financial Services has been appointed as Co-Chairman, FIDC

• Finance Industry Development Council (FIDC) has announced fresh appointments to its board of directors. Kamlesh Gandhi, CMD of MAS Financial Services has been appointed as Co-Chairman, FIDC in addition to Umesh Revankar, CEO and MD of Shriram Transport Finance Group. Sanjay Chamria has resigned as the Co-Chairman and Director, FIDC.

• Finance Industry Development Council (FIDC), which is a representative body of asset and loan financing NBFCs, has announced fresh appointments to its board of directors. Dinanath Dubhashi, MD and CEO, L&T Finance Holdings has been appointed as an additional Director of FIDC. The appointments were approved at a board meeting of FIDC on December 21.

UAE’s Mohammed Ben Sulayem elected as FIA president

• Mohammed Ben Sulayem of the United Arab Emirates has been elected successor to Jean Todt as the first non-European president of motorsport’s world governing body, the International Automobile Federation (FIA).

• The FIA is the governing body for Formula One, the World Rally Championship, World Endurance and Formula E among other series. The 60-year-old Dubai-born former rally driver was standing against British lawyer Graham Stoker, who has been Todt’s deputy president for the sport since 2009.

RBL Bank MD, CEO Vishwavir Ahuja steps aside; Rajeev Ahuja appointed new MD

• The RBL Bank board has appointed Rajeev Ahuja, who’s currently working as the Executive Director at the bank, as interim Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of the bank with immediate effect, subject to the regulatory and other approvals. The board of directors at its meeting has accepted the request of Vishwavir Ahuja, Managing Director and CEO of the bank, to proceed on leave with immediate effect.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Anukrti Upadhyay’s Kintsugi wins the Sushila Devi Award 2021 for the best book of fiction by a woman author

• Anukrti Upadhyay has won the Sushila Devi Award 2021 for the Best Book of Fiction for her novel, Kintsugi, which was published by the Fourth Estate imprint. The Ratanlal Foundation and the organizing Committee of the Bhopal Literature and Art Festival announced the winner, for this notable award for fiction written by a woman author and published in 2020. This prize has been instituted by the Shri Ratanlal Foundation.

• Anukrti Upadhyay has post-graduate degrees in Management and Literature, and a graduate degree in Law. She writes in both English and Hindi. She stunned readers and critics alike with the twin novellas Daura and Bhaunri in 2019 and delighted Hindi readers with the short story collection Japani Sarai.

BOOKS & AUTHOR

A new book by the former Indian Army Chief Gen. Nirmal Chander

• A new book by former Indian Army Chief of Staff Gen. Nirmal Chander Vij (ret) claims to offer a “full picture” of the conflicts in Jammu and Kashmir and the way forward. The book published by HarperCollins India, the book of General Vij, The riddle of “Kashmir: the quest for peace in a troubled land”.

• In the book, General Vij argues that the conflicts in Jammu and Kashmir are “symptomatic of Indo-Pakistani rivalry” after the partition, and contextualizes the issue by beginning the book with a summary of the history of the region. General Vij had been Director General of Military Operations during the Kargil War. After his retirement in 2005, he was founding vice president of the National Disaster Management Authority and director of the think tank Vivekananda India Foundation.

RANKING

Gujarat tops in composite Good Governance Index 2021

• Good Governance Index 2021 was launched by Union Minister Amit Shah on the occasion of the Good Governance Day on 25 December 2021. GGI 2021 was prepared by the Department of Administration Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG). The GGI 2021 framework covered 10 sectors and 58 indicators. The aim of the Good Governance Index is to create a tool that can be used uniformly across the states for assessing the impact of various interventions that are taken up by Central and State Governments.

• Good Governance Index is an implementable and comprehensive framework that assesses the state of Governance across the Indian States and Union Territories enabling ranking of States and districts.

BANKING AND ECONOMIC

HDFC Bank wins coveted CII award for ‘Most Innovative Best Practice’ for financial inclusion

• HDFC Bank has been named under ‘Most Innovative Best Practice’ at the coveted Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Digital Transformation Award 2021 or CII DX Award 2021. It will be recognized for the HDFC’s efforts in world-class financial inclusion in Village Level Executive (VLE) centres along with the Government of India’s Common Service Centres (CSC).

Read More
Read Less

Important Current Affairs 27th December 2021

INTERNATIONAL

Indian-origin philanthropist Dr Imtiaz Sooliman named South African Of The Year

• Indian-origin philanthropist and founder of disaster relief group ‘Gift Of The Givers’, Dr Imtiaz Sooliman has won the prestigious South African of the Year Award run by the Daily Maverick newspaper.

• South Africans across the board voted for Sooliman, putting Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo in second place. Zondo heads the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, which investigates fraud and corruption in the public sector, including state organs.

• Sooliman, in his acceptance speech at the Al Quds Mosque in Cape Town on Friday, called on Muslims worldwide to engage in caring for all communities to change Islamophobic perceptions.

NATIONAL

Gujarat govt launches ‘Nadi Utsav’ to honour rivers, raise awareness about their protection

• The Gujarat government on Sunday launched ‘Nadi Utsav’, or river festival, to honour rivers for their contribution to the development of the state as well as to raise awareness about their protection.

• Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel participated in a state-level launch function at a weir-cum-causeway on Tapi river here, where he worshipped Goddess Tapi with Vedic rituals.

• The state government is committed to building a riverfront on the Tapi river in Surat, Patel said at the function, organised as part of ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, being celebrated across the country, to honour rivers.

Indian Army launched ASIGMA messaging app

• Indian Army has launched a contemporary messaging application named ‘ASIGMA’ (Army Secure IndiGeneous Messaging Application). It is a new generation web-based application developed entirely in-house by a team of officers of the Corps of Signals of the Army. It works as an alternative to Army Wide Area Network (AWAN) messaging application which has been in service for the past 15 years. The application has been sent out on Army-owned hardware and will cater to the army from this time forward, lending itself to lifetime support with future upgrades.

• The messaging application is designed to meet all futuristic requirements for the army and boasts of an enhanced user experience. It comes with a variety of contemporary features including multi-level security, dynamic global address book, message prioritisation, and tracking, and options to meet the requirements of the army at present. This future-ready messaging application will meet the real-time data transfer and messaging requirements of the Army, especially in the backdrop of the current geopolitical security environment. ASIGMA has been developed in line with the Government of India’s, Make in India initiative.

APPOINTMENT & RESIGNATION

Madhya Pradesh govt appoints new public relations chief

• The Madhya Pradesh government has appointed Raghvendra Kumar Singh, a 1997-batch IAS officer, as the new principal secretary and commissioner of the state public relations Department.

• As per a government order, Singh, who was the principal secretary and commissioner of Technical Education, has also been made the managing director of Madhya Pradesh Madhyam, a communication platform of the state government.

OBITURY

Grammy-winning musician JD Crowe dies at 84

• Grammy-winning bluegrass musician J.D. Crowe, whose influential career spanned more than 50 years, has died. He was 84. His son, David, confirmed the death on Saturday to The Associated Press. "We just want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. As great of a musician as dad was, he was even better husband, father and friend," David said in a brief message. Crowe died Friday of undisclosed causes.

IMPORTANT DAYS

International Day of Epidemic Preparedness 2021: 27th December

• The United Nations and World Health Organization marked December 27 as the International day for Epidemic Preparedness. Battered by the Covid-19 pandemic, humans have learned about epidemic preparedness the hard way. In a bid to prepare for future outbreaks and sensitise people about epidemics on all levels. The day was first observed last December when the United Nations General Assembly had emphasised on the need to advocate the importance of the preparedness for, prevention of and partnership against epidemics.

• As per a WHO statement, the need of the hour is to invest in systems that can help detect, prevent and respond to outbreaks that have the ability to disrupt health systems, supply chains and livelihood of especially the poorest countries. The UN also aims at popularising the One Health approach that fosters the integration of plant health, human health and animal health along with other relevant sectors.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Greenman Viral Desai Honoured With Global Environment And Climate Action Citizen Award

• Surat’s noted industrialist Viral Desai, popularly known as Greenman for his love for the environment, has been awarded the prestigious Global Environment and Climate Action Citizen Award in Dubai.

• Viral Desai and the other winners were felicitated at Dubai’s Atlantis, The Palm, on December 23, with the Bharat Gaurav Samman by Sanskruti Yuva Sansthan. The UAE’s Foreign Trade and Economic Development Department’s Director-General Sheikh Awad Mohammed Mugrin graced the ceremony with his presence. Twenty-eight prominent personalities from 11 countries, including the UK, the US, New Zealand, France, and Malaysia, were felicitated with the prestigious awards on occasion, but Viral Desai was the only one from India to have won the honour for climate action.

BANKING AND ECONOMIC

Paytm Payments Bank, MoneyGram partner to offer international remittance directly to Paytm Wallet

• Paytm Payments Bank has partnered with MoneyGram, a peer-to-peer remittance company to enable international fund transfer directly to Paytm Wallet. Under the Partnership, MoneyGram users abroad can now transfer money to any full Know Your Customer (KYC)-compliant Paytm wallet. MoneyGram transactions in India received digitally stands at nearly 50 per cent of all transactions received in the country. This is MoneyGram’s first mobile wallet partnership in India.

• MoneyGram transactions in India received digitally currently represent nearly 50 per cent of all transactions received in the country. The number of transactions sent directly to bank accounts is up about six times from just under 10 per cent two short years ago.

Federal Bank and Vayana Network bagged the 'Most Effective Bank-Fintech Partnership' award

• Vayana Network, one of India’s largest trade finance platforms, and Federal Bank, a leading Private Sector Bank have been awarded the ‘Most Effective Bank-Fintech Partnership: Agile and Adaptable’ at the IBSi-Global Fintech Innovation Awards 2021. The award was conferred in recognition of Vayana Network’s partnership with Federal Bank, for automating and simplifying Supply Chain Finance. This year, the Innovation Awards attracted global attention with over 190 participants from 48 countries.

• Federal Bank partnered with Vayana Network to provide a seamless onboarding experience to dealers through their unique ‘Full Stack’ tech infrastructure – that facilitates end to end digital solution including client supply chain account set up, monitoring, digital authentication of documents on the transaction platform and notification to customers at every step.

Read More
Read Less

Important Current Affairs 26th December 2021

NATIONAL

Drinking Water Supply Schemes Of Rs. 164.03 Crore Approved Under Jal Jeevan Mission In Uttarakhand

• Drinking water supply schemes of Rs. 164.03 Crore were approved under Jal Jeevan Mission by Uttarakhand in the State-level scheme sanctioning committee (SLSSC) meeting held on 23rd December, 2021. Of the eight water supply schemes sanctioned, all are multi-village schemes. It will provide tap water connection to more than 9,200 rural homes.

• These eight schemes will benefit 140 villages in Almora, Bageshwar, Dehradun, Nainital and Uttarkashi districts. Masi, Mangurkhal and Jhimar multi-village tap water supply schemes in Almora district will benefit about 20 thousand people living in 68 villages. Shama and Baidamajhera multi-village tap water supply schemes in Bageshwar district will benefit about 18 thousand people living in 38 villages. Basgaon Loshgyani multi-village tap water supply schmes will provide clean tap water to more than 3 thousand people living in 9 villages of Nainital district. Similarly, Kandari multi-village scheme in Uttarkashi and Motidhar Paniyala scheme in Dehradun will benefit more than 7 thousand people living in 25 villages of these two districts.

Union Minister Arjun Munda launches 'TRIFED Van Dhan' a Pictorial Chronicle of Tribal grit and enterprise

• Union Tribal Affairs Minister, Arjun Munda today launched 'TRIFED Van Dhan', a Pictorial Chronicle of Tribal grit and enterprise. It documents the work done for the promotion of tribal enterprise in the country and the achievements of tribal entrepreneurs under the Van Dhan Vikas Yojana. He also launched the formation of 14 Honey Farmer Producer Organizations, MIS Portal for MSP for Minor Forest Produces, communication campaign SAMVAAD and promotional videos for promoting TRIBES INDIA.

• Speaking on the occasion in New Delhi, Mr. Munda said Centre is reaching out to tribals through a multidimensional work plan for their upliftment. He stressed the need for effective connection and communication with tribal community. He said the launch of MIS portal will ensure ready availability of procurement data that can help in effective decision making and enhancing overall transparency.

WADA restores NDTL accreditation

• Sports Minister Anurag Thakur on Thursday said that the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has restored the accreditation of the National Dope Testing Laboratory (NDTL), which was suspended in 2019 because of its failure to comply with global standards.

• The NDTL is based in the national capital and can resume testing with immediate effect.

PM Modi announced Covid-19 vaccine for children, Health workers and senior citizens

• Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced the Covid-19 vaccine for children and booster doses for Health workers and senior citizens, amid the Omicron scare. During his address to nation, the Prime Minister urged the people to be cautious while celebrating as coronavirus cases are rising in the country due to highly infectious variant, Omicron. Therefore, from the point of view of precaution, the government has decided that precaution dose of vaccine will also be started for healthcare and frontline workers. It will be started from January 10.

• Children between the age group of 15 to 18 years will be getting the Covid vaccine from January 3, 2022.

• Senior citizens with comorbidities will receive booster doses from January 10, 2022. Citizens above 60 years of age with co-morbidities will also have the option of a precautionary dose of the vaccine on the advice of their doctor.

Summits & Mou’s

Greater Noida authority inks pact with National Thermal Power Corporation to recycle plastic

• The Greater Noida authority on Thursday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) to recycle the plastic waste produced in the city, which will be used as fuel to produce electricity at the corporation’s Dadri plant.

• Officials from the Greater Noida authority said it was a challenge to treat the 20 tonne of plastic waste produced daily in the city.

• “We were looking for a solution to handle the plastic waste so that it can be recycled. Now, we are happy since the NTPC will reuse the plastic waste and produce electricity, thereby eliminating the problem of the city to get rid of the plastic waste.

GMR subsidiary awarded contract to develop Indonesia's Kualanamu Airport

• GMR Airports Netherlands B.V., a subsidiary of GMR Airports Limited (GAL), has signed a Shareholders’ Agreement (SHA) and Share Subscription Agreement (SSA) with Indonesia's state-owned airport operator Angkasa Pura II for the development and operation of the South East Asian country's Kualanamu International Airport.

• GAL has entered into a 49%-51% partnership with the Indonesian company to operate, develop and expand airport at Medan, one of the largest metropolitan cities in the country, for a period of 25 years.

IMPORTANT DAYS

Madan Mohan Malaviya's Birth Anniversary: 25dec 2021

• On the 160th anniversary of Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya's birth, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, several Union Ministers, BJP leaders, and politicians, including former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan, Education Minister Jitu Vaghani, Union Minister BL Verma, and others extended their tributes to the great educationalist and politician on Saturday.

• Union Minister Nitin Gadkari wrote on Koo, "Humble greetings to the founder of Banaras Hindu University Bharat Ratna Mahamana Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya ji on his birth anniversary."

Read More
Read Less