Current Affairs

12 March, 2021

International

Sanjay Dhotre MoS, MeitY Virtually inaugurates International Conference on MEMP 2021 at Pune

Sanjay Dhotre, Minister of State (MoS) for Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) virtually inaugurated the 3 day International Conference on Multifunctional Electronic Materials & Processing (MEMP 2021) at Pune, Maharashtra. MEMP-2021 was organised by the Centre for Materials for Electronics Technology (C-MET), Pune.
i.He highlighted on the rise of India’s share in global electronics manufacturing for 1.3% in 2012 to 3.6% in 2019.
ii.As a result of Indian Govt. initiatives like Make in India & AtmaNirbar Bharat, over 200 electronics manufacturing units were developed.
iii.India’s Domestic production of Electronics items saw a compounded annual growth rate of 23% between 2014 & 2020.
iv.The production of mobile phones has gone up from about 6 crore mobile phones in 2014-15 to approximately 33 crore mobile phones in 2019-20.
Note- Currently, C-MET is producing Hafnium and Silicon Carbide for ISRO & DRDO.
About Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY):
Union Minister – Ravi Shankar Prasad (Constituency – Patna Sahib, Bihar)
Minister of State – Dhotre Sanjay Shamrao (Constituency – Akola, Maharashtra)

First-Ever Visit of INS to Historic Port City of Mongla, Bangladesh

Indian Naval Ships(INS) Sumedha, an indigenously built Offshore Patrol vessel and INS Kulish, an indigenously built guided missile corvette made a port call at the historic port city of Mongla, Bangladesh from 8th to 10th March 2021.
This is the first-ever visit of INS to Mongla to pay homage to the Bangladeshi and Indian soldiers and citizens who lost their lives during the 1971 liberation war.

National

India’s Largest Floating Solar Power Plant at Telangana to be commissioned by May 2021

India’s Largest Floating Solar Power Plant of 100 MegaWatt (MW) capacity being constructed at Ramagundam in Peddapalli district of Telangana is set to be commissioned by May-June, 2021. It will be India’s largest floating solar plant in a single location as of now. It is being developed by NTPC South (formerly known as National Thermal Power Corporation Limited) at a cost of INR 423 Crore over the water surface of Sri Ram Sagar Project Reservoir. It will also be India’s biggest floating solar plant, by generation capacity, to date.
About NTPC limited:
Established – 1975
CMD – Gurdeep Singh
Headquarters – New Delhi

NHA & UTI InfraTech Signs to Issue Free PVC Ayushman Bharat PM-JAY Cards to Beneficiaries

National Health Authority(NHA) and UTI Infrastructure Technology & Services Limited (UTIITSL) , company under Ministry of Finance signed an agreement to issue free new PVC Ayushman cards to Ayushman Bharat-Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) beneficiaries in 11 States/Union Territory to avail the health service. Based on the above agreement NHA will issue this free card using UTIITSL technologies to Bihar, Manipur, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Tripura, Nagaland, Chandigarh, Puducherry, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttarakhand where the PM-JAY scheme where currently force in these states. So far, beneficiaries used to pay Rs. 30 as fees at UTIITSL.
About National Health Authority(NHA):-
Chief Executive Officers (CEOs)- Dr. Ram Sewak Sharma
Additional CEO – Dr. Praveen Gedam
Deputy CEO – Vipul Aggarwal
Headquarters – New Delhi
About UTI Infrastructure Technology & Services Limited (UTIITSL)
Established – 1993
MD & CEO – Shri Vijay Kumar Jain

GST e-invoicing mandatory for Businesses with over INR 50 Crore Turnover from April 1, 2021

According to a notification by the Central Board of Indirect Taxes & Customs (CBIC), Government is set to mandate Electronic-invoicing (e-invoicing) under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime for business entities with a turnover of INR 50 Crore & more from April 1, 2021 (start of next financial year) for business to business transactions. It is the 3rd Phase of mandatory e-invoicing under the GST regime. The 1st phase of e-invoicing covered business entities with INR 500 Crore turnover & the 2nd phase covered entities with INR 100 Crore. E-invoicing is mandatory under Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST) Rules, 2017.

Cabinet Approvals on March 10, 2021

The Union Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave its approval for Creation of Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Nidhi as a single non-lapsable reserve fund for health from Health & Education Cess. Amendment for Insurance Act, 1938 to increase Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) limit in the sector to 74% from 49%.
Creation of Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Nidhi (PMSSN)
PMSSN was approved as a single non-lapsable reserve fund for a share of Health from the proceeds of Health & Education Cess levied under Section 136-b of Finance Act, 2007. PMSSN will be administered & maintained by the Ministry of Health &Family Welfare (MoHFW). It will serve as a Non-Lapsable reserve fund for Health in Public Account, A Non-lapsable fund is said to be the fund provided to any ministry or department under budgetary allocation which has to be spent within the fiscal year and the unspent amount will return to the finance ministry at the end of the financial year.This fund cannot be carried to next fiscal year by the appropriate ministry.

India, Uzbekistan armies conduct Military Exercise ‘DUSTLIK II’ in Ranikhet, Uttarakhand

The 2nd Edition of Annual Bilateral Joint Military Exercise ‘DUSTLIK-II’ between the Indian Army & Uzbekistan Army is being held from March 10-19, 2021 at Chaubatia, near Ranikhet, Uttarakhand. The exercise focused on Counter Insurgency (CI) & Counter-Terrorism (CT) skills of both sides. From the Indian side, 13 Kumaon regiment (also called Rezang La Battalion) was nominated for the exercise.
About Uzbekistan:
President – Shavkat Mirziyoyev
Capital – Tashkent
Currency – Uzbekistan Som (UZS)

Economy

Axis Bank Launched wearable contactless payment devices under ‘Wear ‘N’ Pay’

Axis Bank launched a wearable program named ‘Wear ‘N’ Pay’, to make contactless transactions. It includes its own wearable payment devices in a variety of accessories like the band, key chain, and watch loop.
About Axis Bank:
India’s 3rd largest private sector Bank
Commenced operations – 1994(founded- 1993)
Managing Director (MD) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) – Amitabh Chaudhry
Headquarter– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Tagline– Badhti ka Naam Zindagi

KVB Bank and Cholamandalam Investment announced a Co-lending Partnership

Karur Vysya Bank (KVB)and Cholamandalam Investment and Finance Company Limited (Chola), financial services arm of the Murugappa Group launched their co-lending business with technology from Nucleus Software.

Samsung Electronics, Mastercard, and Samsung Card join hands to launch a Fingerprint Biometric Payment Card

In Korea, Mastercard, Samsung Electronics’ System LSI Business, and Samsung Card signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop a biometric card with a built-in fingerprint scanner sensor to provide faster and secure payments transactions which reduce physical contact by avoiding the entering of PIN on Keypad.

Sports

Shooting – Indian Men Team Wins Bronze, Women’s Team Wins Silver at ISSF World Cup 2021, Egypt

The ISSF (International Shooting Sport Federation) Shotgun World Cup 2021 was held in Cairo, Egypt from February 22-March 5,2021. The Shotgun tournament took place for disciplines of Trap Shooting & Skeet Shooting.
Women’s Trap Team Wins Silver: The Indian Women’s Trap Team trio of Kirti Gupta, Manisha Keer & Rajeshwari Kumari won the Silver medal in the event. They were defeated by Russia in the Final.
Men’s Skeet Team Wins Bronze: The Indian Trio of Mairaj Ahmed Khan, Angad Vir Singh Bajwa & Gurjoat Khangura won the Bronze Medal in Men’s skeet team event at the ISSF Shotgun World Cup in Cairo. Russia won the Gold Medal while Czech Republic won the Silver medal.

NADA Disciplinary Panel Imposed Sanctions on Weightlifter Madhavan R & Boxer Ruchika for Violating Code

The Disciplinary Panel of the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) imposed sanctions on Madhavan R, Weightlifter, and Ruchika, Boxer for the violation of NADA’s code on the usage of prohibited substances. The Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel(ADDP) has banned Madhavan R and Ruchika for 4 years and 2 years respectively. Madhavan R was tested positive for the prohibited substance Phentermine & Mephentermine and Ruchika was found positive for Furosemide.

Miscellaneous

Russia & China partners to set up International Lunar Scientific Research Station

i. Russian space agency “Roscosmos” signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with China National Space Administration (CNSA) for jointly creating an International Lunar Scientific Research (ILSR) Station,built on the lunar surface and/or on the lunar orbit.
ii.With regard to this project, Zhang Kejian, administrator of the China National Space Administration signed an memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Russian space agency Roscosmos, chief Dmitry Rogozin.
iii.Funtions of the ILSR Station-It will carry out scientific research activities such as the lunar exploration and utilization, lunar-based observation, basic scientific experiment and technical verification.It which will be open for all countries.
Note- International Space Station (ISS) launched in 1998 was developed by 5 space agencies: NASA, Roscosmos, JAXA (Japan), ESA (EU), and CSA(Canada).
About China National Space Administration (CNSA):
Administrator – Zhang Kejian
Head Quarter – Beijing, China

Thomas Bach Re-elected as President of IOC until 2025

The Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) re-elected Thomas Bach for an additional term of 4 years as the President of ICO until 2025.
His current term as the President of IOC will finish on the closing day of the Tokyo Olympic Games on 8th August 2021 and his second term as the President will start on 9th August 2021 and will conclude in 2025. He was the only candidate of the IOC presidential election which was held during the 137th IOC session held in Athens. At the 2013 IOC session held in Buenos Aires, Tomas Bach former olympian and a fencing champion was first elected as the president of IOC for a term of 8 years.

India’s CAG Girish Chandra Murmu Re-appointed as Chairman of UN’s Panel of External Auditors

14th Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG), Shri Girish Chandra Murmu was re-appointed as the Chairman of the Panel of External Auditors of the United Nations(UN) for the year 2021. He was initially elected as Chairman of the Panel for 2020. He was born in Mayurbhanj District of Odisha.
Roles and responsibilities: To lead the panel to report and audit the accounts and management operations of the UN and its specialised agencies.
About Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG):
Article – Established under Article 148 of the Constitution of India.
Establishment– 1858
Headquarters– New Delhi
The current/14th CAG – Girish Chandra Murmu, assumed office on 8 August 2020
About the UN Panel of External Auditors:
Establishment – 1959 by UN General Assembly.
External Auditors: Panel has Auditors from 13 countries

Chess Player Koneru Humpy Won 2nd Edition of BBC ISWOTY 2020

Padma Shri Koneru Humpy, a 33-year-old chess player from Andhra Pradesh(AP) won the 2nd edition of the BBC Indian Sportswoman of the year (BBC ISWOTY) 2020. The award was given based on the public vote in which Koneru Humpy won against sprinter Dutee Chand, airgun shooter Manu Bhaker, wrestler Vinesh Phogat, and hockey captain Rani Rampal. Tim Davie, the director-general of BBC who hosted the virtual award ceremony announced the winners of the award.

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