Current Affairs

5 July, 2021


WHO awarded China a Malaria-Free Certificate

The World Health Organization (WHO) awarded China a malaria-free certification. This certification recognized China’s 70-year effort to eradicate this disease.
i.It reported zero cases for last the 4 years.
ii.In the 1940s, the country reported 30 million cases of the disease annually.
iii.China is the first country in the WHO Western Pacific Region to be awarded a malaria-free certification in more than 3 decades. Other countries in the region that have achieved this status include Australia (1981), Singapore (1982) and Brunei Darussalam (1987).
It should be noted that countries that have achieved at least three consecutive years of zero indigenous cases can apply for WHO certification of their malaria-free status.

Harsh Vardhan addresses 17th World Congress for Cervical Pathology and Colposcopy

Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Dr Harsh Vardhan addressed the 17th World Congress of International Federation of Cervical Pathology and Colposcopy 2021 (IFCPC 2021) held virtually from July 1-5, 2021. It is being organised in Asia for the 1st time and is also the 1st virtual IFCPC World Congress. It was organised by Indian Society of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology (ISCCP) & Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Vardhman Mahavir Medical College & Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi. It was inaugurated by Vice President Venkaiah Naidu.

Theme – ‘Eliminating Cervical Cancer: Call for Action’, the theme is aligned to the World Health Organisation (WHO) call for Elimination of Cervical Cancer by 2030.
About Indian Society of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology (ISCCP)
President – Dr Saritha Shamsunder
Head Office – New Delhi

India joins G20-OECD Tax Framework Deal for Global Minimum Corporate Tax

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) stated that 130 countries including G20 members, India & China have joined the G20-OECD Tax Framework Deal for Global Minimum Corporate Tax.
i.The Global Minimum Corporate Tax is set to come into force from 2023 mandates 15% Tax on globally operating companies (such as Google, Facebook). It is applicable for Global companies with global annual revenue of at least 20 billion Euros (USD 24 billion) and a profit margin of over 10%. The objective of introducing the tax is to prevent global companies from shifting to low-tax regions to secure extended profits. The 15% tax is expected to generate an estimated USD 150 billion additional tax revenue each year. It was proposed by US President Joe Biden and was accepted by the G7 countries in June, 2021.

Recent Related News:
May 11, 2021, The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has launched the ‘Asia Pacific Tax Hub’ to enhance International Tax Cooperation.
About Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
Secretary-General – Mathias Cormann
Headquarters – Paris, France


DoS releases ‘Draft National Space Transportation Policy – 2020’

The Department of Space (DoS) has placed the ‘Draft National Space Transportation Policy – 2020 – Norms, Guidelines & Procedures (NGP)’ for implementation in public domain for comments & suggestions. The Draft National Space Transportation Policy-2020 covers all aspects of rocket launching, launchpads, reentry of a space object and others.

It aims to unlock the potential of the space sector in the country with respect to space transportation systems by creating a healthy ecosystem for private companies to develop launch vehicles and launch them from Indian Territory. Indian National Space Promotion & Authorization Center (IN-SPACe), an independent body constituted by Government of India, under the DoS has been specified as the nodal agency for all approvals related to launches by the Indian private sector.

Narendra Singh Tomar Released Compendium on Best Practices to Address Gender Issues by DAY-NRLM

Union Minister of Rural Development, Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Panchayati Raj and Food Processing Industries Narendra Singh Tomar released a compendium relating to how Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM) is addressing gender issues through Social Action Committees of Self Help Groups (SHGs) federations.
i.The voices of women and girls who have sought support from the Village Organisation Social Action Committees to address a range of issues such as prevention of child marriages and violence against women were highlighted in the event.
ii.The case studies from 23 States pointed out the processes, mechanisms, strategies, and plans for replicating and scaling the gender interventions to advance the gender equality.
iii.The Union Minister appreciated the Ministry’s effort in providing support to women and girls to voice their concerns and seek support through DAY-NRLM.
iv.He also highlighted the role that SHG members and the Social Action Committees could play in spreading awareness about COVID-19 (to encourage people to get vaccinated).
i.It was launched as ‘Aajeevika – NRLM’ by the GOI’s Ministry of Rural Development in 2011 to address multi-dimensional poverty issues through building strong institutions for the poor. It was renamed DAY-NRLM in 2015.
ii.Under the scheme, SHGs were formed to provide financial, economic and social development services to their members (rural poor women) for enhancing their income and quality of life.
iii.SHG members who came out of poverty became the Community Resource persons and they are acting as change agents. Currently, NRLM covers 6,758 blocks, mobilizing 76.2 million rural households into 69.9 lakh SHGs.
Participants: Minister of State Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, and senior officials from the Ministry of Rural Development, State Governments and members of Village Organisations and Cluster Level federations have participated in the event.
Note – A compendium is a summary of information of a larger work.
About Ministry of Rural Development:
Union Minister – Narendra Singh Tomar (Morena, Madhya Pradesh)
Minister of State – Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti (Fatehpur, Uttar Pradesh)


RBI Imposed Rs 25 lakh Penalty on Punjab and Sind Bank

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) imposed a monetary penalty of Rs 25 lakh on the state-owned Punjab and Sind Bank for non-compliance with certain provisions related to the directions on ‘Cyber Security Framework in Banks’. RBI has also imposed a Rs 1 lakh penalty on the Nagar Sahkari Bank Limited, Etawah, Uttar Pradesh for contravention of certain regulations such as ‘Income Recognition, Asset Classification, Provisioning and Other Related Matters – UCBs (Urban Cooperative Banks)’.

Govt Extended Retirement Age of LIC Chairman from 60 to 62 Years

Government (govt) has amended the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India (Staff) Regulations, 1960 to extend the superannuation (retirement) age of Initial Public Offer (IPO)-bound LIC Chairman to 62 years from 60 years. In June 2021, the govt made a 9-month extension to LIC Chairman M R Kumar till March 2022 in view of the ongoing preparation for the IPO. M R Kumar was to retire on June 30, 2021, upon attaining the age of 60 years. To provide the extension beyond 60 years, the rules are amended now.

Note – The retirement age of the majority of PSUs top executives is 60 years.
About Life Insurance Corporation (LIC):
Establishment -1956
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Chairman -M R Kumar

World Bank increased COVID-19 Vaccine Funding by $8bn to $20 bn

The World Bank (WB) enhanced its available funding by $8 billion for COVID-19 vaccine purchases and deployment to $20 billion over next 18 months i.e. through 2022 from a previous target of $12 billion. This decision has been taken to overcome the disproportionate vaccination rates between the advanced economies and developing countries as the latter are facing sharp increase in overall financing demand.

World Bank’s Assistance to Developing Countries:
i.It has provided more than $4 billion to 51 developing countries for the purchase and deployment of COVID-19 vaccines.
ii.Recently, WB’s private financing arm International Finance Corporation (IFC) mobilized €600 million euros for South African vaccine manufacturer, Aspen Pharmacare Holdings Limited, to ramp up production. This was done in collaboration with three national development finance institutions, Proparco of France, DEG of Germany, and DFC of the United States (US). Out of €600 million euros , €200 million euros from IFC’s account. The World Bank’s vaccine financing package can be used by countries to buy vaccine doses through COVAX (COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access) and AVATT or other sources.

RBI Issued Directions for Appointment of MD/WTD in UCBs

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has issued directions relating to ‘Appointment of Managing Director (MD) / Whole-Time Director (WTD)’ in all Primary (Urban) Co-operative Banks (UCBs).

RBI’s Direction for MD/WTD Appointment:
i.Educational Qualifications: He should be a graduate, preferably, with Qualification in banking (such as Diploma in Banking and Finance/ Chartered /MBA (Finance)) or Post-graduation in any discipline.
ii.Age Limit: From 35 years to 70 years. (the bank’s Boards are allowed to prescribe a lower retirement age).
iii.Ineligible Persons: Member of Parliament (MP), Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA), Member of Municipal Corporation or Municipality or other local bodies, persons engaged in business, trade or having substantial interest in any company.
iv.Tenure of MD/ WTD:

Criteria Tenure
Minimum period to hold the post after 1st appointment 3 years
Maximum period to hold the post at a time 5 years
(in the same bank) After a minimum gap of 3 years (In that 3 years they should not be appointed or associated with a bank (directly/indirectly))
Maximum Tenure to hold the post in the same bank 15 years.

About Reserve Bank of India(RBI):
Establishment– 1st April 1935
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Governor– Shaktikanta Das
Deputy Governors – Mahesh Kumar Jain, Michael Debabrata Patra, M. Rajeshwar Rao, T. Rabi Sankar

NABARD Sanctioned Rs 388 crore for Drinking Water, Road Projects in Odisha

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has sanctioned financial assistance of Rs 388 crore under the Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) for Odisha to set up 4 mega piped drinking water supply projects and 20 rural road projects across 15 districts of the state.

About National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD):
It was established on the recommendations of the B.Sivaraman Committee (by Act 61, 1981 of Parliament) to implement the NABARD Act 1981.
Establishment – 12 July 1982
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Chairman – Govinda Rajulu Chintala


India's second-largest cricket stadium to be built in Jaipur

The Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) has been granted a financial grant worth Rs 100 crore by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to build India's second-largest stadium in Jaipur.

The first phase of the construction work for the stadium is expected to take about 24-30 months. The total expected cost of the construction work is about Rs 290 crore.

Out of the total amount, the BCCI will provide a Rs 100 crore infrastructure grant, Rs 100 crore will be taken as loan from the bank and Rs 90 crore will be taken from Rajasthan Cricket Association's funds and the sale of boxes and premium seats/sponsorship.

Sports Ministry recognises WAKO India Kickboxing Federation

The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports recognised WAKO India Kickboxing Federation as National Sports Federation (NSF) of India. In June 2021, International Olympics Committee (IOC) recognised “World Association of Kickboxing Organizations (WAKO)”, the international federation for Kickboxing, as a full-time member of Olympic games.
i.Kickboxing is set to be a permanent member from 2021’s Tokyo Olympics
ii.Recognition as a NSF, will provide extended promotion and development of the Sport at a faster pace in India.
About Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports:
Minister of State (I/C) – Kiren Rijiju (Constituency – Arunachal West)
Sports Authority of India (SAI) is the apex national sports body of India, established in 1984
About World Association of Kickboxing Organizations (WAKO):
Founded – 1976
President – Roy Baker
Headquarters – Milan, Italy


Shambhu Nath Srivastava Appointed as IFUNA Chairman

Shambhu Nath Srivastava, the former Allahabad High Court Judge and former chief Lokayukta of Chhattisgarh, has been appointed as the Chairman of the Indian Federation of United Nations Associations (IFUNA). He succeeded Mukul Sangma, a former chief minister of Meghalaya.
About Indian Federation of United Nations Associations (IFUNA):
i.IFUNA is a Non-governmental, Voluntary, Nonprofit Organization working for International Peace and Understanding, and to promote the objectives of the United Nations and its Specialized Agencies.
ii.It was founded by social reformer Acharya Narendra Dev and it is affiliated with the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA), which is headquartered at Geneva, Switzerland.
iii.It is the only body to represent India in the UN forums and it also has the Consultative Status of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
iv.ECOSOC is the highest status granted by the UN to non-governmental organizations (NGO’s), thereby allowing them to participate in the work of the UNs.
Headquarters – New Delhi
President – Bijoya Chakrabarty, former Union Minister

RK Sabharwal awarded “The Order of Polar Star” – Highest Civilian Award of Mongolia

Chairman & Managing Director of Engineers India Ltd. (EIL), RK Sabharwal, was awarded the highest civilian award of Mongolia “The Order of Polar Star”. He was honoured with the prestigious award for his contribution towards the construction of Mongolia’s 1st ever Oil Refinery.
i.The Oil Refinery is constructed by the Mongolian government with the USD 1 billion Line of Credit provided by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Mongolia in 2019.

Invest India awarded as World’s Most Innovative Investment Promotion Agency of 2021

Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Piyush Goyal and Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar congratulated ‘Invest India’ for winning the World’s Most Innovative Investment Promotion Agency for 2021 by the OCO Global.
i.Invest India has been continuously identifying innovative areas of investment and bringing in sustainable investors to India, despite the disruptions caused by COVID-19 pandemic
Note- In December 2020, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) declared ‘Invest India’ as winner of the 2020 United Nations Investment Promotion Award
About Invest India:
Objective – Promotion of India’s National Investment through sector specific targeted development in partnership with substantial investment promotion agencies and multilateral organizations.
Established in 2009, under the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry
Managing Director & CEO – Deepak Bagla
About OCO Global:
Headquarters – Belfast, Ireland
Founder & CEO – Mark O’Connell
Established – 2001

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