Current Affairs

10 March, 2021

International

Ghana becomes 1st Country to receive COVAX vaccines through UN Initiative

6,00,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine made by the Serum Institute of India, were offered to Ghana under the vaccine deployment initiative of the United Nations (UN), making it the 1st country in the world to receive COVAX vaccines. Already 92 countries in the lower & middle income group have signed to the UN backed COVAX programme. COVAX is planning to distribute 2 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines by 2021.

India ranked 121st & Singapore retains 1st Rank in the 2021 Economic Freedom Index

India with a score of 56.5 was ranked 121 (category – ‘Mostly Unfree’) in the ‘2021 Index of Economic Freedom’ (27th Annual Edition) released by The Heritage Foundation. Singapore topped the list for the 2nd time in a row followed by New Zealand & Australia. This is the 1st time that the index has been published after the COVID-19 Pandemic. Around 184 Countries have been covered in the Index; the Period of study is from July 2019 – June 2020.
Rank Country Overall Score Category
121 India 56.5 Mostly Unfree
1 Singapore 89.7 Free
2 New Zealand 83.9 Free
3 Australia 82.4 Free
About The Heritage Foundation:
President – Kay C. James
Headquarters – Washington DC., USA

National

Indian Army Leases 4 Heron UAVs from Israel

Indian Army has leased 4 Heron TP medium-altitude, long-endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) from Israel for 3 years. The leases were done under the emergency procurement programme of the Indian army. The drones made by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) will be delivered between August & September 2021. The estimated cost of Leasings is USD 200 Million; the leasing agreement can be further extended up to 2 years. The UAVs will be deployed along with the 3, 448 Km long India-China border.
About Israel:
Prime Minister- Benjamin Netanyahu
Capital– Jerusalem
Currency– Israeli Shekel

WCD Ministry, Invest India sign MoU to enhance cooperation

The Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Invest India for enhancing cooperation in areas of Nutrition, Child Protection and Development, Women Empowerment & Capacity building in mission mode. Invest India will help the efforts of MWCD in Build Strategic and Policy support, strengthen International cooperation, Impact assessment, Sustained Behaviour Change communication
About Invest India:
Managing Director & CEO – Deepak Bagla
Headquarters – New Delhi

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik inaugurated India’s first ‘World Skill Center’ in Bhubaneswar

Odisha Chief Minister, Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the India’s first World Skill Center(WSC), an advanced skill training institute at Mancheswar, Bhubaneswar at the budget of Rs 1342.2crore, under Odisha Skill Development Project with the assistance of Asian Development Bank and ITE Education Services (ITEES), Singapore, the knowledge partner.
About Asian Development Bank(ADB):
Headquarters – Metro Manila, Philippines
Establishment – 19th December 1966
President – Masatsugu Asakawa
Country Director for India – Takeo Konishi

Economy

Wipro Joined World Economic Forum’s Initiative To Advance Social Justice In Business Initiative

Wipro Limited, has joined the “Partnering for Racial Justice in Business initiative” launched by the World Economic Forum on 25th January 2021, to promote a culture of diversity, inclusion, equity and justice for people of all racial backgrounds in the workplace.
The initiative is a global coalition of organisations and their leaders, committed to build an equitable and just workspace for professionals with ethnic and racial identity.

PNB Housing Finance Announced the Donation of Electric Cars to Women in Jaipur & Indore, MP

On the occasion of International Women’s Day on March 08,2021 Punjab National Bank(PNB) Housing Finance company has partnered with Delhi-based NGO, Azad Foundation to donate electric cars under the initiative named ‘Women With Wheels’ for the women of Jaipur and Indore, Madhya Pradesh(MP).
Note – Azad Foundation launched Women With Wheels in 2008.
About PNB Housing Finance:
MD & CEO: Hardayal Prasad
Headquarters: New Delhi
Tagline: Ghar Ki Baat
Azad Foundation
Executive Director:Meenu Vadera
Establishment: 2008
Headquarter: New Delhi

KVGB launches ‘Vikas Asha’ Loan Scheme for Women Entrepreneurs

Karnataka Vikas Grameen Bank (KVGB) has launched the ‘Vikas Asha’ Loan Scheme, under which the bank will distribute loans of up to INR 10 Lakhs to Women Entrepreneurs. The scheme is exclusively for women to meet their business-related needs, for purchasing machinery/equipment/vehicle. It shall also be utilized for meeting the working capital requirements under Micro and Small Enterprises including retail trade.
About Karnataka Vikas Grameen Bank (KVGB):
Chairman – Gopi Krishna
Headquarters – Dharwad, Karnataka

Ujjivan SFB Launched “Garima Savings Account”, Women Savings Account

Ujjivan Small Finance Bank (Ujjivan SFB) launched “Garima Saving Accounts”, a women Saving Account to provide the financial needs of women. The account offers various customised benefits for women which includes a maximum of 7% rate of interest on savings account.
About Ujjivan Small Finance Bank:
MD & CEO– Nitin Chugh
Tagline– Build a Better Life
Headquarters– Bengaluru Karnataka
Ujjivan SFB commenced its operation as a Small finance bank on 1st February 2017.

Yes Bank launched a women centric service – ‘Yes Essence’

In the event of International Women’s Day, Yes Bank launched a banking proposition YES Essence service to offer preferentially – priced loans and healthcare benefits for the women customers.
About Yes bank
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
MD & CEO– Prashant Kumar
Incepted– 2004
Tagline– Experience our expertise
Chatbot– YES ROBOT

AckoDrive Partnered with IDFC FIRST Bank to Issue Free FASTags

AckoDrive, an online car sales platform, a product of ACKO Technologies and Services Private Limited partnered with IDFC FIRST Bank to issue free FASTags. IDFC FIRST Bank, premier Indian banking company authorized by the National Highways Authority of India(NHAI) to distribute FASTags.
Benefits of AckoDrive FASTags:
i.The AckoDrive issues FASTags over the digital platform without issuance fee, paperwork or security deposit.
ii.The AckoDrive FASTags can be purchased by any private car owner by providing the personal information and vehicle details and initial wallet money of Rs.100 to recharge the FASTag.
iii.On purchase of AckoDrive a FASTag wallet for the user will be automatically created at the IDFC FIRST Bank.
iv.These fASTags can be used for the purchase of Fuels at the HPCL pumps.
About IDFC FIRST Bank:
MD & CEO– V. Vaidyanathan
Incorporated as IDFC Bank Limited on 21st October 2014 under companies Act 2013.
The Bank received a universal banking license from Reserve Bank of India(RBI) in July 2015.
IDFC FIRST Bank was founded by the merger of Erstwhile IDFC Bank and Erstwhile Capital First on December 18, 2018.
About ACKO Technologies and Services Private Limited:
MD & CEO– Ruchi Deepak
Head Office– Bengaluru, Karnataka

Sports

Bajrang Punia regains World No. 1 spot

Indian wrestler Bajrang Punia has regained his world number one ranking after clinching a second successive gold medal at the Matteo Pallicone Ranking Series.

Punia defeated Tulga Tumur Ochir from Mongolia 2-2 by criteria in the 65kg freestyle event final in Rome on March 7, 2021. He won after getting a two-pointer in the last 30 seconds of the bout.

This was Punia's first international competition since the COVID-19 pandemic.

IPL 2021 Schedule: VIVO IPL 2021 to begin on April 9th, Final on May 30th, Check Complete Schedule!

IPL 2021 Schedule: The IPL Governing Council on March 7, 2021 announced the schedule for VIVO Indian Premier League 2021 to be held in India.

The IPL will be hosted by India after a gap of nearly two years. The host cities will include Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai and Ahmedabad.

The IPL 2021 will start on April 9, 2021 in Chennai with the opening clash between defending champions Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore.
IPL 2021 Final
The IPL 2021 final will be played on May 30th at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. The newly rebuilt stadium, which is currently the largest cricket stadium in the world, will host its first-ever IPL. The venue will host both playoffs and the final.

IPL 2021 Schedule: VIVO IPL 2021 to begin on April 9th, Final on May 30th, Check Complete Schedule!

IPL 2021 Schedule: The IPL Governing Council on March 7, 2021 announced the schedule for VIVO Indian Premier League 2021 to be held in India.

The IPL will be hosted by India after a gap of nearly two years. The host cities will include Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai and Ahmedabad.

The IPL 2021 will start on April 9, 2021 in Chennai with the opening clash between defending champions Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore.

IPL 2021 Final
The IPL 2021 final will be played on May 30th at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. The newly rebuilt stadium, which is currently the largest cricket stadium in the world, will host its first-ever IPL. The venue will host both playoffs and the final.

Miscellaneous

ISRO develops ‘NISAR’ for Joint Earth Observation Satellite mission with NASA

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has completed the development of an Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) called ‘NISAR’ (NASA-ISRO SAR) which is capable of producing high-resolution images. It will be used for the Joint Earth Observation Satellite Mission of ISRO & NASA (National Aeronautics & Space Administration), USA. The Radar penetrates clouds & darkness enabling NISAR to produce high quality images round the clock in any weather. NISAR is the 1st satellite mission to use 2 different radar frequencies (L-band & S-band) to measure changes in our planet’s surface. The agreement for developing ‘NISAR’ was signed between NASA & ISRO in 2014.
About National Aeronautics & Space Administration (NASA):
Acting Administrator – Steve Jurczyk
Headquarters – Washington DC., USA

President Ram Nath Kovind presented a baton of honour to Kiran Bedi

President Ram Nath Kovind presented a baton of honour and a letter of appreciation to former Puducherry lieutenant governor Kiran Bedi at Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi.
About Kiran Bedi:
The first female IPS officer who started her service in 1972.
In 2004 she received the United Nations Medal from the United Nations for her Outstanding service.
She was the 24th Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry (29 May 2016 – 16 February 2021).

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