Current Affairs

26 April, 2022

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Mumbai Gets India’s First Digital Bus Service With ‘Tap In, Tap Out’ Facility

Maharashtra State Tourism, Environment & Protocol Minister Aditya Thackeray inaugurated India’s first Digital bus service with ‘Tap In, Tap Out’ feature, with the goal of increasing the digitalization of the bus ticketing system, in order to make travelling across Mumbai easier. The service was inaugurated on the Gateway of India – Churchgate route by the Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) in Mumbai, Maharashtra. This service will be introduced on all 10 buses on this route in the coming days, with plans to expand it to all 438 routes in the near future.
Travel will become more convenient with the deployment of this service as it is completely contactless and does not require interaction with the ticket checker.
How Does Fully Digital Bus Operate:
i.The words “Digital Bus” will be written on the front of these buses. Passengers will be able to board the bus only if they have downloaded the app or have a smartcard that allows for cashless payment.
ii.Under the ‘Tap In, Tap Out’ service, a passenger will have to ‘Tap In’ his Chalo smartcard or the Chalo mobile app in front of the machine installed at the entrance. The passenger will be allowed to board the bus with a green tick, and the fare will be deducted when the person deboards after “Tapping Out” on the smart card or mobile app. The traveller gets a receipt on their mobile phone at the completion of the journey when they tap out using the app. They can also collect their ticket if they are using a smart card.

iii. BEST, which follows the motto “Pudhe Chala,” or “Move Ahead,” not only offers the most economical services, but also aspires to be 100% green by 2027.

BEST has also begun to renovate bus stops in order to make them safer and more comfortable for commuters.
About Maharashtra:
Chief Minister – Uddhav Thackeray
Governor – Bhagat Singh Koshyari
Festivals – Ellora Festival; Kojagiri Purnima (Also known as Ashwin Poornima); Vat Pournima (celebrated in the honour of Savitri)

Overview of Visit of the United Kingdom PM Boris Johnson to India

i.The Prime Minister of The United Kingdom (UK), Boris Johnson, was on an official visit to India (Delhi & Gujarat) on April 21-22, 2022 on the invitation of India PM Narendra Modi. This is his first visit to India as Prime Minister of UK.
ii.It should be noted that in the first leg of his two-day visit to India, he visited Gujarat. He is the first British PM to visit Gujarat
iii.Both sides also signed 2 Government to Government MoUs and 4 Non-Governmental MoUs.
iv.India and the UK have reaffirmed their commitment to Cyber Security Partnership for vision 2030 for an open, accessible, secure and peaceful cyberspace in Indo-Pacific.
v.Both sides agreed to complete the free trade agreement (FTA) by the end of the year i.e. by October 2022. It will boost annual bilateral trade immensely.
vi.JCB India’s new £100 million (over Rs 990cr) factory for exports was inaugurated in Vadodara, Gujarat by the Gujarat CM Bhupendra Patel and British PM Boris Johnson in the presence of the Chairman of J C Bamford Excavators, Lord Bamford.
vii.Switch Mobility, the electric vehicle arm of Ashok Leyland, has committed £300 million investment in zero carbon public and commercial transportation in India and UK.
About The United Kingdom (UK):
Capital– London
Currency– Pound Sterling

DefConnect 2.0: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh Launches iDEX-prime, DISC 6 To Strengthen Cutting-Edge Defence Technologies

Union Minister of Defence, Rajnath Singh inaugurated DefConnect 2.0, a celebration of the growth of the Indian defence start-up ecosystem, in New Delhi (Delhi), with the objective of attracting innovators and investors from India’s leading industries in the defence sector.
During the occasion, he has launched ‘Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) Prime’ and the 6th Defence India Start-up Challenge (DISC 6) with 38 Problem Statements. The iDEX-Prime is designed at supporting projects in the ever-growing defence start-ups that require support above Rs 1.5 crore up to Rs 10 crore.
Background:
In 2018, Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi launched the Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX), an operational framework of the Defence Innovation Organization (DIO), a special-purpose vehicle under the Department of Defence Production, Ministry of Defence.
About Ministry of Defence:
Minister of Defence (MoD) – Rajnath Singh (Lucknow constituency, Uttar Pradesh)
Departments under MoD – Department of Defence (DoD); Department of Military Affairs (DMA); Department of Defence Production (DDP); Department of Defence Research and Development (DDR&D); Department of Ex-Servicemen Welfare (DESW)

Economy

SIDBI Signs Mou with WBSIDCL To Develop MSME Ecosystem in West Bengal

The Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), India’s leading financial institution for the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with West Bengal Small Industries Development Corporation Limited (WBSIDCL). The MoU aims to enhance the eco-system for micro and small firms in West Bengal and was signed during the MSME sectoral session of the Bengal Global Business Summit (BGBS), which was held in Kolkata on April 21, 2022.

The objective of this MoU is to improve cooperation between the West Bengal government and SIDBI in order to speed up the structured and planned development of MSMEs in West Bengal. It also intends to provide entrepreneurs with strong assurance and financial assistance from SIDBI at a reasonable cost in order to meet their financial and developmental needs.

The MoU was signed by Nikhil Nirmal, Managing Director of WBSIDCL, and Sudatta Mandal, Deputy Managing Director of SIDBI, in the presence of H. K. Dwivedi, Chief Secretary of West Bengal.
Features of the MoU:
i.Under the MoU, WBSIDCL will provide SIDBI with a dedicated desk for the purpose of establishing an MSME facilitation desk, while SIDBI will provide the required resources.
ii.Following the allotment of land to qualifying MSMEs, WBSIDCL will forward a copy of the land allotment letter to SIDBI, which will conduct a fast-track assessment of applications generated through the MSME facilitation desk/WBSIDCL/other state agencies.
iii. Out of the loan sanctioned to the eligible MSME on merits, SIDBI can make a direct payment to WBSIDCL towards the eligible cost of land for the support of deserving projects.
iv.WBSIDCL will allow for the distribution of SIDBI’s facilities and will exchange necessary database/information about MSMEs with SIDBI. WBSIDCL will appoint a nodal officer to coordinate with SIDBI.
About Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI):
SIDBI was established by an Act of the Indian Parliament to facilitate and strengthen credit flow to MSMEs and address both financial and developmental gaps in the MSME eco-system.
CEO – Sivasubramanian Ramann
Establishment – 1990
Headquarters – Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh

RBI Directions on Credit and Debit Cards; Launches 98th Quarterly IOS 2022 to Assess Business Sentiment

i.The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in exercise of the powers conferred by Sections 35A and Section 56 of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 and Chapter IIIB of the RBI Act, 1934, has issued RBI (Credit Card and Debit Card – Issuance and Conduct) Directions, 2022 w.e.f. July 01, 2022.
ii.These will be applicable to all Scheduled Commercial Banks-SCBs (excluding Payments Banks, State Co-operative Banks and District Central Co-operative Banks) and all Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) operating in India.
iii.As per the directions, NBFCs can not undertake credit card business without the prior approval from apex bank.
iv.RBI has launched 98th round of the quarterly Industrial Outlook Survey (IOS) 2022 of India’s manufacturing sector for the reference period April-June 2022. The survey assesses business sentiment for the Q1FY23 and expectations for the ensuing Q2FY23 period.
v.RBI also launched the 33rd round of the quarterly Services and Infrastructure Outlook Survey (SIOS) 2022.
About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):
Establishment– April 1, 1935
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Governor– Shaktikanta Das
Deputy Governors– Mahesh Kumar Jain, Michael Debabrata Patra, M. Rajeshwar Rao, T. Rabi Sankar

Sports

Tennis: Andrey Rublev won Men’s Single; Ariel Behar & Gonzalo Escobar Won Doubles Title in Serbia Open 2022

Russian Tennis player Andrey Rublev, defeated Serbian tennis player, Novak Djokovic & won the Men’s Singles Title in Serbia Open 2022 held at “Novak” Tennis Centre, Belgrade, Serbia from April 17 to 24, 2022. This win was his third title of the 2022 season.
Doubles Category:
i.Uruguay’s Ariel Behar and Ecuador’s Gonzalo Escobar defeated Croatia’s Nikola Mektić and Croatia’s Mate Pavić & won the Men’s Doubles Category.
About the Serbia Open 2022:
i.Serbia Open 2022 is an Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) 250 tournament.
ii.It is an outdoor clay court tournament.
iii. Prize Money- €534,555 for the year 2022.
About Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP):
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) – Massimo Calvelli
Headquarter – London, The United Kingdom

Miscellaneous

SEBI Restructures its Market Data Advisory Committee; Chaired by M S Sahoo

Securities and Exchange Board of India(SEBI) has rejigs its Market Data Advisory Committee (MDAC) which recommends policy measures pertaining to areas like securities market data access and privacy. The restructured committee will be chaired by Dr M S Sahoo, Distinguished Professor at National Law University, Delhi (NLUD) and former chairperson of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI).
The restructured committee will now have 21 members. Previously the committee had 20 members.
Members of the Committee:
i.The members of the committee includes CEOs of stock exchanges and depositories, representatives of various stakeholders and senior officials of SEBI.
ii.Prabhas Kumar Rath, General Manager of SEBI is the Member Secretary of the MDAC
Click here for the complete list of members
Terms of reference MDAC:
i.The committee recommends appropriate policy for access to securities market data for both transactions and disclosures.
ii.The scope of the committee includes identification of Segment-wise Data Perimeters, Data Needs and Data Gaps.
iii.It will also recommend standardization of Data Definitions; Data Identification Logic and Data Validation Techniques and standardization of formats and documents – filings; reportings; forms; agreements etc.
iv.The committee also recommends policy and operational framework to address standardization, integrity, sourcing, storing, transfer and publishing of data, including the adoption of global standards.
About Securities and Exchange Board of India(SEBI):
Chairperson– Madhabi Puri Buch
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra

Emmanuel Macron Wins 2nd Term & Re-Elected as French President; Defeated Le Pen

The French President Emmanuel Jean-Michel Frédéric Macron belonging to La République En Marche! (The Republic On The Move) party got re-elected as the French President after defeating his far-right rival Marine Le Pen in a runoff election (Second Round) held on April 24, 2022, making Macron the first French President to get re-elected in last 20 years, before which only two Presidents have been re-elected for the second term.
About Emmanuel Macron:
i.In April 2016 he launched the movement En Marche ! and served as its leader until his victory in the 2017 presidential election.
ii.He has served as the Deputy General Secretary of the Presidency of France from 2012 to 2014.
iii.He has also served as the Minister for Economy, Industry and Digital Affairs from August 2014 to August 2016.
About French Presidential Election:
i.According to Article 7 of the Constitution of France, the election of the President of the Republic is conducted in two rounds by an uninominal majority.
ii.To be elected in the first round, a candidate must obtain an absolute majority of the votes cast. Failing this, the two candidates with the highest number of votes in the first round participate in the second.
iii.The results of the presidential election are announced by the Constitutional Council .
About France:
Capital – Paris, France
President – Emmanuel Macron
Currency – Euro
Note:
i.Le Pen secured 34 percent and got defeated by Macron scoring 66 percent in the 2017 Presidential Election.
ii.Her father Jean Marie Le Pen, who founded her party, got less than 20 percent against Jacques Chirac in 2002.

Meghalaya Planning Department’s e-Proposal system MeghEA wins UN Award as Champion Project: WSIS PRIZES 2022

Meghalaya Enterprise Architecture(MeghEA) Implementation, an e-proposal system, a key initiative of the Planning Department of the Government of Meghalaya has been selected for the United Nations(UN)’s World Summit on the Information Society(WSIS) Prizes 2022 – Champion Project.WSIS Prize 2022 is the 11th edition of the contest of the WSIS Prizes. MeghEA has been selected under the category of ‘The role of governments and all stakeholders in the promotion of ICTs for development’ along with projects from Australia, Argentina, United Republic of Tanzania and China. MeghEA has been selected among the top 360 projects across the globe. The 18 winning projects, along with 72 champion projects, will be recognized at the WSIS Prize 2022 Ceremony which will be held at the WSIS Forum 2022 on 31st May 2022.
About MeghEA:
i.MeghEA, a flagship program of the Meghalaya initiated in 2019, aims to enable digital service delivery from Government to citizens, businesses and employees by adopting Whole-of-Government approach.
ii.This is the first of its kind project based on India’s National Enterprise Architecture framework.
iii.MeghEA is supported by National e-Gov Division (NeGD). KPMG is the consulting partner for MeghEA, while Humanitics, NIC and other are implementing agencies.
Other Champion Projects from India:

eOffice one of the key projects of National Informatics Centre (NIC) under the E-government category.

C-DERP (Covid 19- Digital Emergency Relief Program) by Digital Empowerment Foundation(DEF) under the E-health category.

About WSIS Prizes:
i.The WSIS Prizes contest was developed in response to requests from the WSIS stakeholders to create an effective mechanism to evaluate projects and activities that leverage the power of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) to advance sustainable development.
ii.WSIS Prizes is the unique global platform to identify and showcase success stories in the implementation of the WSIS Action Lines and SDGs.
iii.The first WSIS Project Prizes were awarded in 2012.
About WSIS Forum 2022:
i.WSIS Forum 2022 is the world’s largest annual gathering of the ‘ICT for development’ community.
ii.It is held from 15th March 2022 and the final week will be held from 30th May to 3rd June 2022.
iii.The forum is co-organised by International Telecommunication Union (ITU), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization(UNESCO), UN Development Programme (UNDP) and UN Conference on Trade and Development(UNCTAD), in close collaboration with all WSIS Action Line Facilitators/Co-Facilitators.

PM Modi Receives First Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar Award in Mumbai

The Hon’ble Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi received the First Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar Award 2022, for his ‘selfless service to the country and society’. The award was conferred at the 80th Annual Master Deenanath Mangeshkar Awards ceremony held at Mumbai, Maharashtra. The Award was instituted by the Pune-based Master Deenanath Mangeshkar Smruti Pratishthan, a public charitable trust run by the Mangeshkar family. PM Received the Award from the members of the Mangeshkar family.
About Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar Award:
i.The Award was given in memory of late Lata Mangeshkar on the occasion of her father Deenanath Mangeshwar’s 80th death anniversary(24th April, 2022).
ii.The award will be presented annually to only one individual who has made path-breaking, spectacular and exemplary contributions to the nation, its people, and the society.
Note:
i.Lata Mangeshkar was born on September 28, 1929, in Indore, Madhya Pradesh (MP) & died on February 6, 2022 in Mumbai, Maharashtra.
ii.The year 2022 marks the 80th death anniversary of Master Deenanath Mangeshkar (Father of Lata Mangeshkar).

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