Current Affairs

21 August, 2021

International

EXIM Bank provides around USD 210 mn soft loan to Guinea

The Export and Import Bank (EXIM) of India has signed Soft loan worth USD 210.73 million (≅INR 1567 crore) to the government of Guinea for drinking water projects, hospital building and solar projects in the country. It includes USD 170 mn Line of Credit (LoC) for strengthening the Grand Conakry-Horizon 2040 drinking water supply project in GuineaLoan of USD 20.51 mn for the construction and upgradation of regional hospitals in Kankan and Nzerekore Loc worth USD 20.22 mn for financing two solar projects in the country which includes supply of electricity for public universities and health facilities. The agreement under the LoC is Effective from August 11, 2021.

What is a soft loan?
i.A loan with no interest or below market rate of interest is known as a soft loan.
ii.Soft loans have lenient terms like extended grace periods.
About Export and Import (EXIM) Bank of India:
Establishment– 1982
Deputy Managing Director (MD)– Harsha Bangari, N. Ramesh
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Regulated By– Reserve Bank of India
About Guinea
President – Alpha Conde
Capital – Conakry
Currency – Guinean Franc

EAM Jaishankar Chaired UNSC Open debate on Peacekeeping & Technology ; launches UNITE AWARE platform

External Affairs Minister (EAM) S.Jaishankar chaired the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Open debate on Technology & Peacekeeping with the theme, ‘Protecting the Protectors: Technology and Peacekeeping’
UNSC adopted the Presidential statement (PRST) & Resolution on Peacekeeping
i.The 15 member body, UNSC unanimously adopted the Presidential Statement on Peacekeeping & Technology, given by EAM Jaishankar.
ii.UNSC adopted Resolution 2589 unanimously, Security Council calls on Governments to protect peacekeepers, Requests creation of online database cataloguing attacks.
India & UN launches The UNITE AWARE platform
i.A unique technology platform aimed at enhancing security & safety of peacekeepers.
ii.It helps to increase situational awareness and provides real time terrain-related information to peacekeepers.
iii.India has allocated funds of USD 1.64 Million for the roll-out of this Platform.
India, UN signs MoU in strengthening peacekeeping Missions
The Government of India has signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with United nations (UN) in support of – ’Partnership for technology in Peacekeeping‘ initiative and to UN C4ISR- UN Command, Control, Communication, Computers, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Academy for Peace Operations (UNCAP) based in Entebbe, Uganda.
About United Nations (UN):
Establishment– 1945
Secretary General– Antonio Manuel de Oliveira Guterres
Members– 193 (India became its member on October 30, 1945)
Secretariat– New York, United States (US)

National

President RamNath Govind approved the Constitution (127th Amendment) Bill, 2021

The President of India, RamNath Govind approved the Constitution (127th Amendment) Bill, 2021. After his assent, the bill has changed into the Constitution (105th Amendment) Act, 2021 which will restore the power of states and Union Territories (UTs) to identify and specify Socially and Educationally backward Classes (SEBCs). The Constitution 127th Amendment Bill was passed by the Parliament on 11th August, 2021 in the Monsoon Session. It has amended articles 338B , 342-A and 366(26C) of the Indian Constitution

Article 338B – It deals with the structure, duties and powers of the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC)
Article 342-A – It empowers the President to notify a particular caste as SEBC and also enables the parliament to change the list
Article 366(26C) – gives the definition for SEBCs
About National Commission For Backward Classes (NCBC)
It is a constitutional body under Article 338B of the Constitution of India under the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment
Chairman – Bhagwan Lal Sahni
Headquarters – New delhi

SC allows Women to appear in NDA exam for the 1st time in 65 years

The Supreme Court (SC) in its interim order has allowed Women candidates to appear in the upcoming National Defense Academy (NDA) examination. Women will be appearing for the 1st time in the 65 years history of the NDA examination. Women candidates will be permitted to sit for the NDA exam which is Rescheduled on November 14th, 2021 and their admission into the NDA will be subject to final orders of SC. Students between age group of 16 to 19 and those who are in Class 12 or above can apply for the NDA NDA examination is conducted by the Union Public Services Commission (UPSC)

About National Defense Academy (NDA)
i.It was Established in December 1954 in Khadakwasla, Pune, Maharashtra .
ii.NDA is the joint defense service training institute of the Indian Armed forces where the cadets of the Indian Army, the Indian Navy & the Indian Air force train together.
iii.It is the 1st tri-service academy in the world.
About Supreme Court of India
Chief Justice of India (CJI) – N V Ramana
Headquarters – New Delhi

Rajnath Singh launches DISC 5.0 under iDEX-DIO

Union Minister Rajnath Singh, Ministry of Defense (MoD) has launched Defense India Startup Challenge (DISC) 5.0 (5th version) under Innovations for Defense Excellence-Defense Innovation Organisation (iDEX-DIO) through video conference. The Challenge has been launched by Ministry of Defence in partnership with Atal Innovation Mission (AIM). It will leverage India’s startup ecosystem to develop Defense technologies, Equipment design & Manufacturing capabilities Under DISC 5.0, 35 challenges were made open of which13 from Armed forces & 22 from Defense Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs) to startups, Innovators & MSMEs to provide their innovative ideas on technologies related to the defense sector. The challenges are in the areas of Situational awareness, Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence, Aircraft-trainer, Non-lethal devices, 5G network, Under-water domain awareness, Drone SWARMS and Data Capturing. DISC 1.0 was launched in 2018 and in the previous 4 Editions, more than 80 startups, MSMEs & Individual innovators have emerged as winners in over 40 technological areas.

About Ministry of Defense (MoD)
Union Minister – Rajnath Singh (Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh)
Minister of State (MoS) – Ajay Bhatt (Nainital-Udhamsingh Nagar , Uttarakhand)

Economy

Ind-Ra cuts GDP forecast for India to 9.4% for FY22

On August 19, 2021, India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) downgraded the economic growth forecast or Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for India to 9.4% for FY22 from 9.6% estimated earlier. The key reason behind this descent is the vaccination of the adult population (18+) which will not be covered entirely by December 31, 2021. As per the forecast, if the entire adult population gets vaccinated by December 31, 2021 then GDP is estimated 9.6% y-o-y (Year-on-Year) in FY22, otherwise it may slip to 9.1%.

India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra):
It is a 100% owned subsidiary of the Fitch Group, and is recognized by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and National Housing Bank (NHB).
Chairman, Managing Director & CEO– Rohit Karan Sawhney
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra

ASK Investment Managers launches India’s 1st AIF, ‘ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund’

ASK Investment Managers Ltd (ASK IM) launched India’s first Digital Alternate Investment Fund (AIF) namely ‘ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund’ through which the company is targeting to raise Rs 1,000 crore. This fund is a close-ended category-III long-only AIF. It will have a flexi cap portfolio with a midcap bias and will invest in listed Indian equities. Category III AIFs employ different trading strategies like long-short, arbitrage, fixed income and derivatives trading.

About ASK Investment Managers Ltd (ASK IM):
It is a leading asset and wealth management company.
Executive Director– Bharat Shah
Headquarter– Mumbai, Maharashtra

ADB, India Sign $500 Million Loan Agreement to Expand Metro Rail Network in Bengaluru

The Asian Development Bank(ADB) will provide USD 500 million loans to Government of India to expand the metro rail network in Bengaluru, Karnataka with the construction of two new metro lines totaling 56 kilometers Outer Ring Road- Kempegowda International Airport corridor with 30 stations.
Highlights- Additional $2 million technical assistance is being provided by the ADB to help state government formulate Urban Development Projects The grant will be utilised by Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited(BMRCL)

About Asian Development Bank
Establishment: 1996
Headquarters: Mandaluyong, Manila, Philippines
Member: 68 countries (Including India)
President of ADB : Masatsugu Asakawa
About Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited(BMRCL)
Managing Director: Anjum Parwez( IAS Officer, 1994 batch)

Sports

Odisha to sponsor Indian Hockey teams for 10 more years

The Odisha government will sponsor the Indian Hockey teams for 10 more years after the current sponsorship ends in 2023, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced. The state government started sponsoring the national hockey teams in 2018. The teams have scripted history with their brilliant performance at the Tokyo Olympics,” the chief minister said, handing over a cash award of Rs 10 lakh to each player.

Nitin Chugh, Managing Director(MD) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ujjivan Small Finance Bank has submitted his resignation. He will step down from his post on 30th September 2021. With this resignation, He will also cease to be the Director of Ujjivan Small Finance Bank with effect from 30th September 2021. His tenure as the director of Ujjivan bank is co-terminus with his tenure as Managing Director and CEO of the bank. About Nitin Chugh: i.Nitin Chugh has been serving as the MD and CEO of the Ujjivan Small Finance Bank since December 2019. ii.Previously he has served as the group head for digital banking of HDFC Bank. iii.He has also worked for Standard Chartered Bank, Xerox, HCL Technologies. About Ujjivan Small Finance Bank: MD &CEO– Nitin Chugh Headquarters– Bengaluru, Karnataka Tagline– Build a Better Life

The 2021 edition of the World Athletics U20 Championships has been started in Nairobi, Kenya. The impact of Covid on teams travelling and logistics of moving vital equipment around the world have proven to be a challenge, the governing body said in a release. The event was originally scheduled for 2020. The World U20 Championships were held from 17 to 22 August, 2021.

Miscellaneous

Nitin Chugh MD & CEO of Ujjivan Small Finance Bank Steps Down

Nitin Chugh, Managing Director(MD) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ujjivan Small Finance Bank has submitted his resignation. He will step down from his post on 30th September 2021. With this resignation, He will also cease to be the Director of Ujjivan Small Finance Bank with effect from 30th September 2021. His tenure as the director of Ujjivan bank is co-terminus with his tenure as Managing Director and CEO of the bank.

About Nitin Chugh:
i.Nitin Chugh has been serving as the MD and CEO of the Ujjivan Small Finance Bank since December 2019.
ii.Previously he has served as the group head for digital banking of HDFC Bank.
iii.He has also worked for Standard Chartered Bank, Xerox, HCL Technologies.
About Ujjivan Small Finance Bank:
MD &CEO– Nitin Chugh
Headquarters– Bengaluru, Karnataka
Tagline– Build a Better Life

CVC re-appointed TM Bhasin as Chairman of Advisory Board for Banking and Financial Frauds

The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) re-appointed Dr. Tejendra Mohan Bhasin aka TM Bhasin as the chairman of the Advisory Board for Banking and Financial Frauds (ABBFF) w.e.f. August 21, 2021 for a further period of two years. The reappointment followed the term completion of ABBFF on August 20, 2021 which was constituted in 2019 to examine bank frauds of over Rs 50 crore and recommend relevant action.

About ABBFF:
The CVC, in consultation with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) constituted the ABBFF comprising of four members for an initial term of two years. Then, ABBFF, after due process of consultation with CVC, CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation), RBI, and Department of Financial Services, framed the standard operating procedure (SOP) for general managers and above accountable in the fraud cases of Rs 50 crore and more, referred to it by the public sector banks (PSBs). Now, in the new term of ABBFF, its scope has been expanded to comprehensively examine the staff accountability for all levels of the officials or whole-time directors (WTD) in PSBs, in the fraud cases of Rs 50 crore and above. ABBFF is headquartered in New Delhi.

About Central Vigilance Commission (CVC):
Establishment– 1964 (Statutory Status was given in 1998)
Central Vigilance Commissioner– Suresh N Patel
Headquarter– New Delhi

Shanti Lal Jain Appointed as the MD and CEO of Indian Bank

The Appointment Committee of Cabinet (ACC) has approved the appointment of Shanti Lal Jain as the Managing Director(MD) and Chief Executive Officer(CEO) of the Indian Bank for a period of 3 years from the date of assumption of office or 1st September 2021. He will replace Padmaja Chunduru whose term as MD & CEO of Indian bank will end on 31st August 2021. He is currently serving as the Executive Director of the Bank of Baroda(BoB).

About the appointment:
i.The appointment can be extended up to 2 years or till the age of superannuation or until further orders.
ii.The Bank Board Bureau(BBB) has recommended Shanti Lal Jain for the role of MD & CEO of Indian Bank and the recommendation was accepted by the Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance.
About Shanti Lal Jain:
i.Shanti Lal Jain, a chartered accountant, has worked with Allahabad Bank as Chief Financial Officer, Chief Risk Officer and General Manager.
ii.Prior to joining Allahabad bank, he worked in various industries.
About Indian Bank:
MD & CEO– Padmaja Chunduru (Till Shanti Lal Jain Appointment)
Headquarters– Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Established in 1907
Tagline– Your Own Bank

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Daily Current Affairs | 22nd September 2021

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