Current Affairs

5 June, 2021


Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan Represented India in NAM Health Ministers Virtual Meet

Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Harsh Vardhan virtually participated in a meeting with Ministers of Health of the NAM (Non-Aligned Movement) Countries.
i.Harsh Vardhan stated that during COVID-19, India has supplied medicines to 123 partner countries including 59 NAM nations. He also noted that Ayushman Bharat, national health policy was aiming to provide free health assurance to over 500 million underprivileged people, making it the world’s largest health assurance scheme.
ii.NAM formed in 1961 is a forum of 120 developing world states that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. After the United Nations(UN), it is the largest grouping of states worldwide. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, is the current chairman of NAM.

Global funding on Nature to be Tripled by 2030 to tackle Environment Change – UN Report

The United Nations report titled, “State of Finance for Nature” estimates the annual investments in Nature-based Solutions (NbS) must be tripled by 2030 and increased to 4-times by 2050, compared to the current spending of USD 133 billion (Rs. 9.7 lakh crores).
i.The “State of Finance for Nature” report was jointly prepared by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the Economics of Land Degradation Initiative.
About World Economic Forum (WEF):
Founder & Executive Chairman – Klaus Schwab
Founded – 1971
Headquarters – Cologny, Switzerland
About United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP):
Executive Director – Inger Andersen
Founded – 1972
Headquarters – Nairobi, Kenya

Global Unemployment Rate To be 5.7% in 2022; No recovery in global jobs till 2023: ILO’s WESO Trends 2021

International Labour Organisation(ILO) released a report titled “World Employment and Social Outlook: Trends 2021(WESO Trends 2021)” stating global unemployment rate will be 5.7% in 2022, 6.3% in 2021 & there will no recovery in global jobs until 2023.
Note – Global Unemployment Rate was 5.4% in 2020.
About International Labour Organisation(ILO):
Director-General – Guy Ryder
Headquarter – Genèva, Switzerland
Member Countries – 187 Countries
Established – 1919


xpert Committee on VCC Headed by K.P. Krishnan Submitted its Report to IFSCA

The Expert Committee on Variable Capital Company (VCC) headed by K.P. Krishnan submitted its report on the feasibility of VCCs in the International Financial Services Centres(IFSCs) to the International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA). The committee recommended the adoption of a VCC-like legal structure to conduct fund management activity in IFSCs

i.IFSCA constituted the Committee of Experts to explore the potential for allowing another legal structure i.e. VCC as an additional option through which asset managers could pool the investors’ funds.

About International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA):
It is a statutory unified regulatory body under the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Government of India.
Establishment – April 27, 2020, under IFSCA Act, 2019
Headquarters – GIFT City, Gandhinagar, Gujarat
Chairperson – Injeti Srinivas

Health Minister Harsh Vardhan Launched Digitized Versions of Health Schemes CGHS, RAN, HMDG on NHA’s IT Platform

Union Minister Harsh Vardhan, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(MoHFW) launched the revamped, digitized version of Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS), Umbrella schemes of Rashtriya Arogya Nidhi (RAN), and Health Minister’s Discretionary Grant (HMDG) on National Health Authority’s (NHA) IT platform.
Objective: Digitization of healthcare services to enable the poor and needy people to avail the benefits of the health schemes on time.
About CGHS, RAN and HMDG:
About National Health Authority (NHA):
It is the successor of the National Health Agency, reconstituted on 2nd January 2019, and it is the apex body responsible for implementing India’s flagship public health insurance/assurance scheme AB PM-JAY.
CEO – Ram Sewak Sharma

MoD signs contract with Mahindra Telephonics for 11 Airport Surveillance Radars

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) signed a Rs 323.47 crore worth contract with Mahindra Telephonics Integrated Systems Limited for procurement of 11 Airport Surveillance Radars for the use of Indian Navy & Indian Coast Guard.
i.Mahindra Telephonics signed the contract for the 11 radars under the “Buy and Make” category, to boost “Make in India” initiative.
ii.Objective – The installation of these radars will increase the air domain awareness
About Ministry of Defence (MoD):
Union Minister – Rajnath Singh (Constituency – Lucknow, UP)
Minister of State – Shripad Yesso Naik (Constituency – North Goa, Goa)


FSDC Constituted Inter-regulators’ Panel to Deal with Fintech Challenges

The Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) has constituted the first of its kind inter-regulators’ panel to address the regulatory challenges posed by the fintech (financial technology) industry. The committee includes officials from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), finance ministry, the Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and the Insurance and Regulatory Authority of India (IRDAI).
About Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC):
It was constituted under the Ministry of Finance in 2010. The Raghuram Rajan committee (2008) first proposed the creation of FSDC.
Chairman: Union Finance Minister (Current – Nirmala Sitharaman)

Sebi inks pact with CSSF, Luxembourg to strengthen cooperation in securities regulation

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and the Luxembourg Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF) signed a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for mutual co-operation and technical assistance.
Objective: To strengthen cross border cooperation in the area of securities regulation.
About Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI):
Establishment – On April 12, 1992, in accordance with the SEBI Act, 1992.
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Chairman – Ajay Tyagi
About Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF):
CSSF is a public institution that supervises the professionals and products of the Luxembourg financial sector.
Establishment – 1945
Headquarters – Luxembourg
Director General – Mr Claude Marx

NABARD Approves Rs 254 Crore For Drinking Water Projects In Odisha

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has sanctioned a Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) of Rs 254 crore for setting up two mega piped drinking water supply projects in Odisha.

About National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD):
NABARD was established on the recommendations of the B.Sivaraman Committee (by Act 61, 1981 of Parliament) to implement the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development Act 1981.
Established – 12 July 1982
Chairman– Govinda Rajulu Chintala
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra

NR Saving Accounts For Seafarers Launched By Federal Bank

Private sector lender Federal Bank has launched an exclusive NR(Non Resident) savings account scheme for the seafarer segment. This exclusive scheme is for mariners.
To help Mariners in executing banking transactions irrespective of the geo-coordinates and time zone differences with the help of state-of-the-art digital banking platform.

About Federal Bank:
Incorporated : April 23,1931 as the Travancore federal bank limited,Kerala under the Travancore companies regulation ,1916
Managing Director(MD) & Chief Executive Officer(CEO):Shyam Srinivasan
Tagline:Your Perfect Banking Partner


ICC Men's ODI World 2027, 2031 to have 14 teams, ICC Men's T20 World Cup to have 20 teams from 2024

The International Cricket Council (ICC) Board confirmed on June 1, 2021 that the Men's ODI World Cup in 2027 and 2031 will be a 14-team event.
The ICC Board also informed that the Men's T20 World Cup will now be expanded to include 20 teams and will have 55 matches in 2024, 2026, 2028 and 2030.
Besides this, the Champions Trophy will involve eight teams in the year 2025 and 2029.
ICC Key Announcements
ICC World Test Championship Finals will be held in 2025, 2027, 2029 and 2031.
The ICC Men's ODI Cricket World Cup format will have two groups of seven with the top three teams from each group progressing to a Super Six stage.

India's Olympic-bound wrestler Sumit Malik fails dope test, provisionally suspended

Indian wrestler Sumit Malik has failed his dope test with just 49 days to go for the Tokyo Olympics, which are scheduled to be held in Japan.
Malik, who had reserved his Olympic berth in the 125kg category by reaching the final of the qualifier event in Sofia last month, is now unlikely to join the Indian contingent for the event. The news has come as a shock to the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).

WFI Assistant Secretary Vinod Tomar confirmed that Sumit has failed his dope test and has bleak chances of participating in the Tokyo Olympics. The official stated that Sumit has tested positive for a banned substance and has been provisionally suspended by the UWW (United World Wrestling).


NASA Plans Two New Missions to Venus; New Zealand Made a Space Agreement With NASA

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to implement two new missions DAVINCI+ and VERITAS to Venus, Earth’s nearest also called sister planet. NASA will spend $500 million for each mission. Both missions will be expected to launch between 2028-2030. DAVINCI+ (short for Deep Atmosphere Venus Investigation of Noble Gases, Chemistry and Imaging) – It will measure the composition of Venus’ atmosphere to understand how it formed and evolved, as well as determine whether the planet ever had an ocean.

VERITAS (an acronym for Venus Emissivity, Radio Science, InSAR, Topography and Spectroscopy) – This mission will map Venus’ surface to determine the planet’s geologic history and understand why it developed so differently than Earth.

About National Aeronautics and Space Administration(NASA)
Established in – 1958
Headquarters – Washington, D.C., United States
Administrator –Bill Nelson (14th administrator of NASA on May 2021)

China successfully launches Fengyun-4B Satellite; Plans 3-Astronaut Space Mission

China National Space Administration (CNSA) successfully launched “Fengyun-4B” (FY-4B) Meteorological satellite to Earth’s Geostationary Orbit. FY-4B is the 1st of China’s New-Generation Meteorological Satellites, which has an improved measurement resolution of 250 meters to scan Earth.
China plans to send 3-Astronauts to Tianzhou-2 Space Station: Yang Liwei, Director of the China Manned Space Engineering Office, announced China’s plan to send 3-Male Astronauts to its Newly launched Space Station, “Tianzhou-2”. The Astronauts will conduct Scientific tasks, including repair and maintenance on appliance switches on their 3-Month stay.
About China: China is the largest country in Asia.

Lt Gen Pradeep Chandran Nair Took Over as the DG of Assam Rifle

Lieutenant General (Lt Gen) Pradeep Chandran Nair took over as the 21st Director General(DG) of Assam Rifles(AR), India’s oldest paramilitary force at the DGAR headquarters at Shillong, Meghalaya. The Assam Rifles were popularly known as Sentinels of the North-East.
Lt Gen Pradeep Chandran Nair has been serving as the Director-General Recruiting of the Indian Army.

GST Council set up 8-member Panel to Examine Tax Exemption on COVID-19 Material; Convened by Conrad Sangma

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council constituted an 8-member group of ministers (GoM) to examine the need for GST concession/exemption on a range of Covid-19 essentials such as vaccines, drugs, testing kits, and ventilators and make recommendations on the GST rates of COVID-19 relief material.Conrad Kongkal Sangma, Chief Minister of Meghalaya will be the Convenor of the panel. Currently, 5 percent GST is levied on domestically manufactured vaccines, 12 percent GST is levied for COVID-19 drugs and oxygen concentrators.

MoL&E Constitute Expert Group Led by Prof Ajit Mishra to Fix Minimum Wages

The Ministry of Labour and Employment(MoL&E) has constituted an expert group led by Professor Ajit Mishra, director of the Institute of Economic Growth to provide technical support and recommendations to fix the minimum wages and national floor minimum wages.
This decision is a part of the centre’s implementation of the Code of Wages, 2019, which mandates a statutory national level floor wage.
About the Expert Group: The expert group will make recommendations on the minimum wages and national floor wages to the government.

About Ministry of Labour and Employment(MoL&E):
Minister of State(Independent Charge)– Santosh Kumar Gangwar (Constituency: Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh)

David Diop won International Booker Prize 2021; Became 1st French Writer to Win the Award

French novelist David Diop won the International Booker Prize 2021 for “At Night All Blood Is Black”, the English translation of the French Book titled “Frere d’ame”. David Diop became the first French writer to win the Award.The Booker Prize Foundation presents the International Booker Prize.
The French Book ‘Frere d’ame’ was written by Anna Moschovakis and published by Pushkin Press. The prize carries a cash award of 50,000 Pound (around Rs 51 lakhs) which will be split between the Translator David Diop and Writer Anna Moschovakis.

About At Night All Blood Is Black:
“At Night All Blood Is Black” the 2nd novel of David Diop, was inspired by his Senegalese great-grandfather’s silence about his experiences in World War I(WWI).
About International Booker Prize:
The International Booker Prize formerly known as the Man Booker International Prize has been awarded since 2005

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