Current Affairs

4 December, 2021

International

South Korea to Get World’s Sustainable First Floating City by 2025

South Korea is set to get the World’s first floating city, a joint effort by OCEANIX and the United Nations Human Settlement Programme (UN-Habit), which is likely to be completed by 2025. The floating city will be developed on the coast of Busan, South Korea, to tackle the problem of rising sea levels. In November 2021, Busan Metropolitan City of the Republic of Korea, UN-Habitat, and New York designers OCEANIX, signed an agreement to build the world’s first sustainable floating city.

Background:
The concept of the floating city, dubbed Oceanix City, was presented by Bjarke Ingels Group(BIG) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology(MIT) at a roundtable discussion on Sustainable Floating Cities at the United Nations’s New York Headquarters.
Features of the floating city:
i.The city will be spread across an area of more than 75 hectares, and will be able to accommodate 10000 residents.
ii.The floating city is designed to withstand natural disasters including floods, tsunamis and Category 5 hurricanes as its floating platforms will be anchored to the seafloor.
iii.The ‘flood-proof infrastructure’ will have several man-made islands, aiming to eliminate the risk of flooding by rising with the sea.
iv.It is designed in a way that it will grow, transform and adapt organically over the course of time evolving from neighborhoods, to villages, to cities.
About South Korea:
President– Moon Jae-in
Capital– Seoul
Currency– South Korean won

National

India achieves target of 40% Power Generation Capacity from Non-Fossil Fuel Sources

In accordance with the ministry of new and renewable energy (MNRE), India has achieved the target of 40% power generation capacity to 156.83 GW (Giga Watt) from non-fossil fuel sources in November 2021. Now, India’s installed renewable energy (RE) capacity stands at 150.05 GW, while its nuclear energy-based installed electricity capacity is 6.78 GW. This 156.83 GW non-fossil fuels based installed energy capacity is 40.1% of the total installed electricity capacity of 390.8 GW. According to the government, installed power capacity from non-fossil fuels will go up to 66% by 2030. Also, India has already reached an emission reduction of 28%.

Note – India announced to cut net carbon emissions to zero by 2070 at COP26 in Glasgow.

Background:
i.At COP 21, as part of its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), India had committed to achieving 40% of its installed electricity capacity from non-fossil energy sources by 2030.
ii.Now, the Indian government is committed to achieving 500 GW of installed electricity capacity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030.

Devusinh Chauhan MoS for Communications Released Commemorative Stamp to Mark 75 Years of Mahindra Group

Devusinh Chauhan, Minister of State(MoS) for Communications, has unveiled the commemorative postage stamp to mark the 75th anniversary of the Mahindra Group. He also urged the group to collaborate with the postal department to improve the delivery of social services in the rural areas During the event, the First Day Cover (FDC) and an Information Brochure were also released. The Commemorative Postage Stamp, FDC and Information Brochure would be available for sale at Philatelic Bureaux and they can also be ordered online on https://www.epostoffice.gov.in/.

History of Mahindra Group:
i.Mahindra & Mohammed was founded by Kailash Chandra Mahindra and Jagdish Chandra Mahindra with Malik Ghulam Mohammed in 1945
ii.The company started the steel trading business in association with suppliers in the United Kingdom.
iii.After the partition of India and Pakistan, Mahindra & Mohammed subsequently changed its name to Mahindra & Mahindra.

India-EU adopted Clean Energy & Climate Partnership 2021-2023

i.The 9th India-EU (European Union) Energy Panel held which was co-chaired by Reenat Sandhu, the Secretary of India’s Ministry of External Affairs (West), and Ms. Mechthild Worsdorfer, Deputy Director-General for Energy, European Commission (EC).

ii.During the meeting both sides agreed on a detailed work programme 2021-2023, to implement the 2016 India-EU Clean Energy and Climate Partnership.
iii.The Energy Panel agreed on increased technical cooperation in the area of energy efficiency, renewable energy, green hydrogen, grid integration; storage, power market design, interconnection, cold chain, and sustainable financing.
About European Union:
It has 27 member states.
It has 24 official languages.
The United Kingdom (UK) withdrew from the EU on January31, 2020.

MoHUA extends Timeline for Implementation of Smart Cities Mission to June 2023

The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) extended the timeline for the implementation of the Smart Cities Mission (SCM) for all 100 participating cities to June 2023 due to the COVID-19 induced slowdown and other factors. The Mission was launched in the year FY2015-16 & set a target of five years i.e.FY2019-20. This decision is also based upon the recommendations made by NITI (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog in August 2021. The information for the same was provided by Minister of State (MoS) Kaushal Kishore, MoHUA in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.

BDL and Indian Army sign Rs 471.41cr contract to supply IGLA-1M missiles

Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) and the Indian Army signed a contract worth Rs 471.41 crore in New Delhi for the refurbishment of IGLA-1M missiles. After the Refurbishment, the missile will get a fresh lease life of ten years.

About IGLA-1M missile:
Introduced by the Soviet Union in 1986, the IGLA-1M is an improved version of Igla man-portable missile system. The Igla is a fire-and-forget, man-portable, shoulder-launched, short range Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) to engage low flying fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft and cruise missiles.
About Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL):
Chairman and Managing Director– Siddharth Mishra
Parent Ministry– Ministry of Defence
Headquarters– Hyderabad, Telangana

Economy

KreditBee, Mswipe Join Hands to Offer ‘Cardless EMI’ at Retail Stores

KreditBee, a Fintech lending platform, partnered with Mswipe to offer fully digital ‘cardless EMI’ (Equated Monthly Installment) at leading retail stores. Under ‘cardless EMI’, KreditBee offers ‘pay later’ options for purchases of up to 1 Lakh, which can be converted into EMI in a range of 3 to 12 months

Aim – To expand offline presence and enable purchases of more than Rs 5 crores per month.
Significance:
i.Under the partnership, the customers could shop from around 2 lakh merchant stores associated with Mswipe along with five lakh retail stores that will partner with KreditBee across India by the end of 2022.
ii.Book Now Pay Later (BNPL) option enables the customers to make instant purchases and helps small businesses to increase their overall sales.
Note – EMI transactions on Mswipe terminals have increased 3 times in 2021 (compared to 2020), with merchants enjoying services at affordable rates on POS machines and pay by link.
About KreditBee:
Co-founder & CEO – Madhusudan Ekambaram
Established – 2018
Headquarters – Bangalore, Karnataka
About Mswipe Technologies Pvt Ltd:
Founder & Managing Director – Manish Patel
Established – 2011
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra

Paytm Money tie-up with PMS Bazaar and Launches PMS Marketplace for HNI Investors

Paytm Money, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Paytm, has partnered with PMS Bazaar and launched a Portfolio Management Services (PMS) marketplace for its High Net-worth Individual (HNI) investors. PMS Bazaar is a Mumbai-based PMS advisory start-up that devises investment strategies.

About PMS:
i.It is a service offered by the Portfolio Manager and it would lead to an investment in stocks, fixed income, debt, cash, structured products and other individual securities, managed by a portfolio manager to meet specific investment objectives.
ii.A portfolio manager is a body corporate who will make a contract or arrangement with a client for the management or administration of a portfolio of securities or the funds of the client on behalf of them.
iii.SEBI has directed the portfolio manager to accept minimum Rs 50 lakhs or securities having a minimum worth of Rs 50 Lakhs from the client.
About Paytm Money:
Operations Headquarters – Bengaluru, Karnataka
Whole-time Director & CEO – Varun Sridhar

ADB Approves $500 Million Loan to Improve Quality of School Education in India

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved a $500 million (Rs 3,752 crore) loan to the Government of India to improve the quality of India’s school education and mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on student’s learning. ADB’s loan supports the Samagra Shiksha, an Integrated Scheme for School Education and the new Exemplar School Initiative of the Ministry of Education (MoE).

Features:
i.The loan helps in improving foundational learning for primary students and enhancing secondary education through science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics (STEAM) and integrated vocational education. The programme supports and expands digital technologies with local digital content in teaching-learning practices.

ii.The program will strengthen each state’s education management information system to monitor school performance and promote evidence-based planning.
iii.It also provides professional development for teachers and principals to enhance their pedagogic skills, subject knowledge, and digital skills.
About Exemplar schools:
i.Exemplar schools will provide quality learning environments that will become a model for replication in other government schools across India.
ii.About 1,800 government schools were planned to be transformed into exemplar schools in Assam, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, and Uttarakhand.
About Asian Development Bank
President – Masatsugu Asakawa
Established – 1966
Headquarters – Manila, Philippines
Members – Owned by 68 Members (49 from Asian & Pacific Regions)

Sports

Saurav Ghosal won Malaysian Open Squash Championships 2021; Became 1st Indian To Win The Championship

Indian Squash player Saurav Ghosal won the Malaysian Open Squash Championships 2021, defeating Colombia’s Miguel Rodriguez in the men’s singles final held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Saurav Ghosal, seeded two and ranked 15th in the world, became the 1st Indian to win the Malaysian Open Squash Championships. The Malaysian Open Squash Championships 2021 was held from 23rd to 27th November 2021.

Malaysia’s Aifa Azman won the women’s singles title of the 2021 Malaysian Open squash championships 2021.

Miscellaneous

Pradip Shah appointed NARCL Chairman & Sanjay Jain joins as the CEO of IDRCL

The founder of IndAsia Fund Advisors,Pradip Shah appointed as the Chairman of National Asset Reconstruction Company Ltd (NARCL) and Managing Director of Aditya Birla Asset Reconstruction Company (ABARC), Sanjay Jain appointed as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of India Debt Resolution Company Ltd (IDRCL).

Diwakar Gupta, former managing director of State Bank of India (SBI), also appointed as Chairman of IDRCL.

Highlights:
i.In May 2021, the chief general manager of SBI, Padmakumar Nair was appointed as the MD of NARCL.
Pradip Shah:
i.He is a Chartered Accountant (CA) and an MBA (Masters in Business Administration) graduate from Harvard University.
ii.He is credited for establishing India’s first and largest housing finance company, HDFC and Crisil (rating firm).
Sanjay Jain:
i.He has experience of 29 years in corporate lending, investment banking and stressed fund management.
ii.Prior to this appointment he has worked with Asset Reconstruction Company of India, SBI Capital Markets, etc.
About India Debt Resolution Company Ltd (IDRCL):
The IDRCL is a service company/operational entity which will manage the asset and engage market professionals and turnaround experts. Public Sector Banks (PSBs) and Public Financial Institutions will hold a maximum of 49% stake while the remaining stake will be with private sector lenders.

Gita Gopinath appointed as the IMF as First Deputy Managing Director

Indian-American and the first female Chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Gita Gopinath is promoted as the IMF’s First Deputy Managing Director (FDMD) serving under IMF Chief Kristalina Georgieva. She will succeed FDMD Geoffrey Okamoto who is set to be relived from IMF.
About Gita Gopinath:
i.She was born on 8 December 1971 in Kannur, Kerala.
ii.She has been serving as the Chief Economist of the IMF since 2019. In that role she is the Director of IMF Research Department and the Economic Counsellor of the Fund.
iii.Gita Gopinath was also appointed to various positions including as an advisory member to the US Federal Reserve Bank and also as an economic advisor to the Kerala Chief Minister (CM).
About International Monetary Fund (IMF):
MD- Kristalina Georgieva
Member countries- 190
Established- 1944
Headquarters- Washington, DC United States

Assam govt.conferred ‘Asom Baibhav Award’ to industrialist Ratan Tata

On the occasion of Asom Divas or Assam Day, the Chief Minister (CM) of Assam Himanta Biswa Sarma conferred the prestigious ‘Asom Baibhav’ 2021 award to Ratan Tata, Chairman of TATA Trusts for contributing towards cancer care services in Assam. It is the highest civilian award of Assam. Assam day is celebrated on 2 December to commemorate the rule of Chalong Sukapha. The Assam Ratna award from now onwards will be known as Asom Baibhav, Assam Vibhushan as Asom Saurav and Assam Bhusan and Assam Shree award as Asom Gaurav.

About Ratan Tata:
i.Ratan Naval Tata was born on 28 December 1937 in Mumbai, Maharashtra.
ii.He is an Indian industrialist, philanthropist, and a former chairman of Tata Sons.
iii.He was also chairman of Tata Group, from 1990 – 2012, and again, as interim chairman, from October 2016 through February 2017, and currently chairman of the TATA Trusts.
About Assam:
River – Kopili river, Iril river
Lake-Chandubi Lake,Haflong Lake

Delhi’s Nizamuddin Revival Project won 2 UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation 2021

Nizamuddin Revival Project, India’s project on the holistic urban revitalisation of the historic Nizamuddin Basti community, in New Delhi, Delhi has won the UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation 2021 under 2 categories: Award of Excellence and Special Recognition for Sustainable Development.
About Nizamuddin Basti project:
i.The Nizamuddin Basti project has overcome the major socio-economic challenges and improved health, education and well-being, particularly for women and youth through an innovative People-Public-Private Partnership model.
ii.The project involves the meticulous restoration of over 20 historic monuments clustered around the 14th-century mausoleum of the revered Sufi saint, Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya.
Winners of UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation 2021:
The jury of Heritage experts honoured 9 projects from 6 countries (Bangladesh, China, India, Japan, Malaysia, and Thailand) with the UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation 2021.

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