Current Affairs

17 May, 2021

International

Gunjan Shah – Appointed as New CEO of Bata India Ltd

India’s largest footwear retailer Bata India Ltd., appointed Gunjan Shah as its new chief executive officer(CEO).He will succeed Sandeep Kataria who was elevated as the global CEO of Bata Brand.
i.He has been appointed as a whole-time director of Bata for a period of five years with effect from June 21, 2021.
ii.He will take over the new position in June and will be based in Gurugram,Haryana.
iii.Before this Gunjan Shah has been working as chief commercial officer in Britannia Industries Ltd.
iv.He has also worked in Asian Paints and Motorola.
About Bata India:
Bata India is the largest footwear retailer in India with brands such as Bata, Hush Puppies, Naturalizer, Power, Marie Claire, Weinbrenner, North Star, Scholl, among others.
Incorporated:1931.
Headquarters:Gurugram,Haryana.

Fortune’s List of World’s 50 Greatest Leaders:NZ PM, Jacinda Ardern tops; Adar Poonawalla in Top 10

Fortune Magazine released its ‘World’s 50 Greatest Leaders’ list for 2021 which is topped by New Zealand(NZ) Prime Minister(PM) Jacinda Ardern.Serum Institute of India’s CEO Adar Poonawalla is on the 10th spot and he is the only Indian among the top 10 names on the list.

Verisk Maplecroft Report-India has 43 of the World’s 100 Most Environmentally Riskiest cities; Jakarta Topped

According to the ‘Environmental Risk Outlook 2021’ released by Verisk Maplecroft, India has 43 of the World’s 100 most environmentally riskiest cities. Jakarta in Indonesia was ranked as the most riskiest city in the world, followed by Delhi & Chennai (Tamil Nadu). 99 of the World’s 100 riskiest cities are in Asia (43 in India and 37 in China). Lima, Peru is the only non-Asian city to be listed in the World’s 100 Riskiest cities. Glasgow, Scotland was ranked as the safety city in the report.
World’s 3 most environmentally riskiest cities
1 Jakarta, Indonesia
2 Delhi, India
3 Chennai, Tamil Nadu
About Verisk Maplecroft
President – Matt Moshiri
Headquarters – Bath, United Kingdom

National

Dept. of Economic Affairs, New Development Bank Organised Seminar on ‘Social Infrastructure Financing and Use of Digital Technologies’

In May 2021, the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance and the New Development Bank jointly organized a virtual seminar on Social Infrastructure Financing and the use of Digital Technologies, as a part of the Economic and Financial Cooperation Agenda under the Indian BRICS Chairship 2021.
About Ministry of Finance:
Union Minister – Nirmala Sitharaman (Rajya Sabha MP representing Karnataka)
Minister of State (MoS) – Anurag Singh Thakur (Lok Sabha MP, Constituency – Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh)
About New Development Bank:
Establishment -2014 by BRICS countries
Headquarters – Shanghai, China
President – Marcos Prado Troyjo

US to help India to achieve its Target of 450 GW of RE by 2030

The United States (US) is set to partner with India on climate change, it will assist India to achieve its target of deploying 450 GigaWatts (GW) of Renewable Energy (RE) by 2030. It was stated by US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry. The US will provide finance and technological assistance to India to meet its target. John Kerry is the 1st American climate change envoy with cabinet rank. India is the 3rd CO2 emitter after China, USA. According to a recent report by the International Energy Agency (IEA), India’s CO2 emission declined by 7% (or 160 Metric Tons of Carbon Dioxide) in 2020.
About United States
President – Joe Biden
Capital – Washington DC
Currency – United States Dollar (USD)

PM Modi releases 8th Installment of funds to beneficiaries under PM-KISAN Scheme

Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi has released the 8th installment of funds to beneficiaries under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme. Around ~INR 20, 667 Crore was distributed to around 9.5 Crore farmer beneficiaries in the 8 installment. For the 1st time, farmers in West Bengal joined the PM-KISAN Scheme, and around 7 Lakh Bengal farmers received their 1st installment.
About Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare:
Union Minister – Narendra Singh Tomar (Lok Sabha – Morena, Madhya Pradesh)
Minister of State (MoS) – Parshottam Rupala (Rajya Sabha – Gujarat), Kailash Choudhary (Lok Sabha – Barmer, Rajasthan)

Economy

Microsite to Support Employees amid COVID-19 Pandemic Launched by Bank of Baroda

Indian Public sector bank, Bank of Baroda recently launched a Micro-website that will serve as an emergency networking platform for all employees amid the second wave of COVID-19.
It provides Various data, like network of plasma donors to employees and Recovered employees can also enroll themselves voluntarily as donors.
Other facilities provided in this site are, External links for suppliers of necessities like oxygen cylinders, Remdesivir, plasma and hospital beds are also available on this site. Providing contact details of various SPOCs (single point of contact) across zones for help. Registration facility for employees to sign up for volunteer work in their cities. Reaching out under the ”Need Help” section to request assistance for themselves or their families.

IDRBT Building Next Generation Digital Financial Infrastructure, NADI

The Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology (IDRBT), an arm of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), is building a next-generation Digital Financial Infrastructure named National Digital Financial Infrastructure (NADI). NADI will be owned by the Government of India, with NADI’s high-speed network, the government could monitor and control all financial activity, and it will also make security easier.
About Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology(IDRBT):
Establishment – It was established by the RBI in March 1996
Headquarters – Hyderabad, Telangana
Director – D. Janakiram

NABARD Provided Rs 1,236 crore from RIDF for Assam in FY21

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) provided a record high amount of Rs 1,236 crore from its Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) of FY21, for the Rural Connectivity Projects (Roads & Bridges) in Assam. Objective: To improve the sustainable agriculture practices and double the farming community’s income in Assam.
About NABAR’s different sanction to Assam:
i.For creating new infrastructure projects, NABARD has also sanctioned Rs 1150 crore to the Government of Assam during FY21 under RIDF XXVI.
Benefits under the infrastructure projects: The infrastructure projects in Assam will lead to creation of 610 km length of rural roads in the state- benefitting 1255 villages around 16 lakh people. It also led to 2472 hectare under irrigation, augmentation of infrastructure development of 2437 elementary schools and 23,397 ha under flood protection.
ii.NABARD has sanctioned Rs 1.40 crore to grant assistance to 13 farm sector projects across, Rs 85 lakh for 36 Skill Development Programmes (focus attention to reverse migrant labourers), and Rs 85 lakh for establishment of 8 Rural Haats.
iii.NABARD provided an amount of Rs 272 crore to Assam Gramin Vikash Bank and Assam Cooperative Apex Bank Ltd. as Special Liquidity Facility (SLF) to address the liquidity constraints faced by Rural Financial Institutions (RFIs) due to Covid-19.
About National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD):
Establishment – 1982 (on the recommendations of B. Sivaramman Committee)
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Chairman – Govinda Rajulu Chintala

ADB committed USD 3.92 billion Loan to India in 2020 – Highest Annual Lending to India Since 1986

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has committed $3.92 billion in sovereign loans for 13 projects to India in 2020, including $1.8 billion in projects to support the Government of India’s coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic response. Since the start of its lending operations in 1986, this 2020 lending was ADB’s highest-ever annual lending commitment to India. Note – ADB’s current sovereign portfolio in India includes 79 projects worth $14.4 billion.
About Asian Development Bank (ADB)
India was a founding member of ADB and it is being ADB’s fourth-largest shareholder and its top borrower since 2010.
Establishment -1966
Headquarters – Manila, Philippines
President – Masatsugu Asakawa
Members – 68 members (49 within Asia and the Pacific, 19 outside)

Sports

Rafael Nadal wins Italian Open, 2021

Italian Open, 2021 was won by Rafael Nadal. This is his tenth title of the Rome Masters. The Italian Open, 2021 was held on May 16, 2021 in Rome. The Finals was held between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. It is also known as Rome Masters. Rafael Nadal Rafael Nadal is a Spanish Tennis player.

AICF Launched ‘Checkmate Covid Initiative’ to Help Chess Community Against COVID-19

The All India Chess Federation (AICF) launched the ‘Checkmate Covid Initiative’ to support the chess community affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The initiative was launched at the virtual event in the presence of Arkady Dvorkovich, president of FIDE (Fédération Internationale des Échecs – International Chess Federation), Viswanathan Anand, 5 time world Champion, World Rapid Chess Champion Koneru Humpy, Sanjay Kapoor, president of AICF and Bharat Singh Chauhan, Secretary of AICF. Under the initiative AICF will provide financial assistance to registered players, arbiters, organisers, coaches and retired players. Assistance for vaccination for players travelling abroad for tournaments. Medical, home quarantine support and financial assistance for members who are in need of hospitalisation.

Miscellaneous

AICF Launched ‘Checkmate Covid Initiative’ to Help Chess Community Against COVID-19

The All India Chess Federation (AICF) launched the ‘Checkmate Covid Initiative’ to support the chess community affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The initiative was launched at the virtual event in the presence of Arkady Dvorkovich, president of FIDE (Fédération Internationale des Échecs – International Chess Federation), Viswanathan Anand, 5 time world Champion, World Rapid Chess Champion Koneru Humpy, Sanjay Kapoor, president of AICF and Bharat Singh Chauhan, Secretary of AICF. Under the initiative AICF will provide financial assistance to registered players, arbiters, organisers, coaches and retired players. Assistance for vaccination for players travelling abroad for tournaments. Medical, home quarantine support and financial assistance for members who are in need of hospitalisation.

New Shepard: Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin Sets 1st Space Tourism Flight in July 2021

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’s rocket company, Blue Origin, announced the first flight that aboard its New Shepard rocket, and crew capsule which is designed to carry up to 6 tourists per flight, beyond an invisible line, known as the Karman line, which separates Earth from space. The first flight is scheduled to take place in July 20,2021 and one seat was auctioned off to the highest bidder.Note – The space tourism rocket was named after Alan Shepard – the second man and the first American to travel into space.

Zhurong : China’s 1st Mars Rover Lands on the Utopia Planitia, Mars

The Chinese Spacecraft Tianwen 1 carrying rover Zhurong landed on Utopia Planitia region, Mars successfully.This makes China only the second country after the US to send a rover to the surface of the Red Planet.
About China:
Capital – Beijing
Currency – Renminbi
President – Xi Jinping

Zhurong : China’s 1st Mars Rover Lands on the Utopia Planitia, Mars

China successfully launched the Yaogan-30 (08) remote sensing satellites into orbit using the Long March 2C rocket, lifted off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, China. It was China’s 13th launch of 2021 & 369th mission of the Long March rocket series. The 3 satellites launched in the mission will be used for electromagnetic environment surveys and other technology tests. ‘Tianqi-12’ – a small satellite for Internet of Things (IoT) data connectivity built by Beijing based firm ‘Guodian Gaoke’ was also launched. Yaogan satellites are basically Chinese military reconnaissance satellites.
About China National Space Administration (CNSA)
Administrator – Zhang Kejian
Headquarters – Beijing, China

China launches Yaogan – Remote Sensing Satellites into orbit

China successfully launched the Yaogan-30 (08) remote sensing satellites into orbit using the Long March 2C rocket, lifted off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, China. It was China’s 13th launch of 2021 & 369th mission of the Long March rocket series. The 3 satellites launched in the mission will be used for electromagnetic environment surveys and other technology tests. ‘Tianqi-12’ – a small satellite for Internet of Things (IoT) data connectivity built by Beijing based firm ‘Guodian Gaoke’ was also launched. Yaogan satellites are basically Chinese military reconnaissance satellites.
About China National Space Administration (CNSA)
Administrator – Zhang Kejian
Headquarters – Beijing, China

‘Defence National OPD’ Launched on e-Sanjeevani Portal

‘Defence National OPD’ was launched in e-Sanjeevani Portal. Earlier, ‘Defence National OPD’ was launched as ‘Ex-Defence OPD’ on 07 May 2021 in a phased manner in 3 States(Uttar Pradesh ,Rajasthan ,Uttarakhand).
Objective-It facilitates free online medical consultation to all citizens of India, as well as provides for online prescription of medicines.
Working of ‘Defence National OPD’:
Through the ‘Defence National OPD’ in e-Sanjeevani Portal, veteran defence doctors will answer the queries of the citizen & will provide free online consultation services.

Google partners with SpaceX to provide Starlink Internet Service

Google Cloud is set to partner with SpaceX to provide Cloud services to help deliver high speed internet through SpaceX’s Starlink satellites. As part of the partnership, SpaceX will install Starlink terminals (ground stations) at Google data centres across the world. The Starlink Terminals will help in delivering high-speed broadband internet through Google Cloud. The service will be available to enterprise customers before the end of 2021. The Starlink-Google partnership also involves delivery of data, cloud services, and applications to remote areas of the world.
About Google
CEO – Sundar Pichai
Headquarters – California, US
About SpaceX
CEO – Elon Musk
Headquarters – California, USA

PCHFL Received CCI Approval To Acquire DHFL

Piramal Capital and Housing Finance (PCHF), a subsidiary of Piramal Enterprises (PE), received approval from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to acquire Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd. (DHFL).
Note – DHFL was the 1st finance company to be referred to NCLT by the RBI using special powers under Section 227 of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code(IBC), 2016.
About Piramal Enterprises (PE):
Chairman – Ajay Piramal
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
About Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd.(DHFL):
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Administrator– Shri R. Subramaniakumar

Y Nuklu Phom Became the only Indian to win Whitley Award 2021 for “Biodiversity Peace Corridor”

Y Nuklu Phom, a church worker from Nagaland, won the Whitley Award 2021 for his efforts toward creating “Biodiversity Peace Corridor”, a network of community-owned forests in Nagaland and protecting the Amur Falcon. He is the only Indian to win the prestigious award. The award to Y Nuklu Phom was donated by the MAVA Foundation. The Whitley Award is also known as the ‘Green Oscar’.
About Whitley Award:
i.The award was established by Edward Whitley OBE in 1993.
ii.The award is annually presented to the individuals from the global south by Whitley Fund for Nature (WFN).
iii.Each winner receives 40000 pound (around RS 41 lakhs) in project funding over 1 year.
About Whitley Fund for Nature (WFN):
Headquarters– London, United Kingdom

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