Current Affairs 21st August 2021| Current Affairs News

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CURRENT AFFAIRS: IMPORTANT DAYS

World Senior Citizen Day – Observed on Aug 21

  • The World Senior Citizens’ Day is dedicated to increasing awareness about the issues that affect the elderly.
  • Every year, World Senior Citizens’ Day is celebrated on August 21.
  • This year’s theme is, “Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing?”
  • This is the theme of International Older Persons Day by the United Nations (UN).
  • From age deterioration to elder abuse, each problem is widely discussed, experiences are shared, and possibly some solutions are also offered.
  • The day also acknowledges the contribution of elders to society as it only adds to their inclusiveness in society and growth.
  • For the unknown, World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is observed on June 15.
  • A number of schemes including Integrated Programme for Older Persons, Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana, Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme, and Vayoshreshtha Samman are announced for senior citizens in India.
  • These schemes aim to improve the quality of life of senior citizens by providing them with basic amenities and opportunities.
  • The government has also announced that elders, who age above 60 and fall under the BPL category, should be provided with free assisted living aids and physical devices.

International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism – Observed on Aug 21

  • Terrorism is the biggest threat to our civilization currently.
  • Every year, thousands of innocent people lose their lives to these ghastly acts of terror.
  • Incident of these acts might end in a matter of a few hours or days, but they leave behind a scar that can never be undone from the minds of the victim.
  • To remember and pay tribute to the victims who lose their life or suffer the trauma of terrorism, United Nations observes August 21 as the International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to victims of terrorism.
  • Terrorism has spread its presence in almost every part of the world.
  • While the impact may vary, there’s no country that has not suffered the trauma.
  • In a time like this, there’s a need for the world to come together and end this problem right from the root.

India Celebrates Sanskrit Week 2021 – Observed from August 19 To 25

  • Sanskrit Week has been celebrated from August 19 to August 25.
  • This Sanskrit Week is observed to promote and popularise the ancient language.
  • As part of the celebration of Sanskrit Week beginning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged everyone to learn and promote the ancient language. 
  • While the Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has asked to take a pledge and generate a new enthusiasm towards Indian cultural traditions and languages and to make Sanskrit accessible to people easily.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi while greeting the citizens on Sanskrit Week informed that it is a matter of joy that the Sanskrit language is reaching more people through modern technology and the popularity of the language is growing across the globe.
  • Prime Minister Modi has expressed confidence that the Sanskrit week between August 19 and August 25 will generate new interest and enthusiasm among the people and play an important role in the spread of the Sanskrit language.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: NATIONAL NEWS

Delhi-Chandigarh Highway first EV-friendly highway inaugurated in India 

  • The Union Heavy Industries Minister Mahendra Nath Pandey inaugurated the country’s very first Solar Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station at the Karnal Lake Resort.

About the Solar EV charging station:

  • With the inauguration of the first solar electric vehicle charging station at the Karnal lake resort, the Delhi-Chandigarh Highway has become the first e-vehicle friendly highway in India.
  • The EV charging station at the Karnal lake resort is strategically located at the midpoint of the Delhi-Chandigarh highway and is equipped to cater to all types of E-cars plying currently in the country.
  • Further, work is in progress for upgrading the other charging stations on this highway, within a year.

Set up by BHEL under FAME:

  • The network of Solar-based Electric Vehicle Charging stations (SEVCs) is set up by Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) under the FAME-1 [Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid) & Electric Vehicles in India] scheme of the Ministry of Heavy Industries.
  • The state-of-the-art charging station at the Karnal Lake Resort was virtually inaugurated by the Union Minister of Heavy Industries, in the presence of Arun Goel, Secretary (MHI). Dr. Nalin Shinghal, Chairman & Managing Director, BHEL.

Solar-based Electric Vehicle charging stations inaugurated in Karnal:

  • The EV charging station at Karnal lake resort, is strategically located at the midpoint of Delhi-Chandigarh highway, and is equipped to cater to all types of E- cars plying currently in the country.
  • Further, the company is also working on upgrading the other charging stations on this highway, within this year.
  • The establishment of similar EV chargers at regular intervals of 25-30 kms.
  • on the highway will allay range-anxiety among Electric Vehicle users and bolster their confidence for inter-city travel.
  • The SEVC stations are equipped with individual grid-connected rooftop solar plants that will supply green and clean energy to the charging stations.

Govt forms Committee for doubling the production of handlooms

  • In a major boost to the employment-generating textiles sector, the government constituted an eight-member committee to double the production and quadruple the exports of handlooms in three years.
  • The textiles ministry setup the committee under Sunil Sethi, Chairman, Fashion Design Council of India and stated the panel will submit final report within 45 days.
  • Textiles minister Piyush Goyal has set a target to raise handloom production from present Rs.60,000 crore to Rs.12,5000 crore and increase handloom exports from Rs.2500 crore to Rs.10,000 crore in three years’ time.

About the committee:

  • The committee will suggest strategy and policy framework for doubling the production and for improving the quality of handloom products with the aim of enhancing income of the weavers and recommend ways for partnering and collaboration of handloom weaver’s agencies with the designers, buying houses and institutions, organizations and exporters.
  • It will also suggest measures for quadrupling exports of handloom products, recommend ways and means for improving the marketing of handloom products in domestic market, and suggesting measures for improving the input supplies such as raw materials, credit, technology upgrading, skilling, designs etc.
  • “The Committee shall be paid TA/DA for need based travel in the country.
  • The Committee shall submit its preliminary recommendations within 30 days and final report within 45 days from the day of constitution the Committee.”

National Mission on Edible Oils – Oil Palm 

  • The Union Cabinet has approved implementation of the National Mission on Edible Oils – Oil Palm.
  • The Mission aims to increase the area under cultivation for Oil Palm by an additional area of 6.5 lakh hectare (ha.) thereby reaching the target of 10 lakh hectares in the next 5 years.
  • India is the largest edible oil importer in the world and imports 133.50 lakh tonnes costing 80 thousand crores.
  • Identifying the NE region as a special focus area, it aims to reduce import dependency of palm oil benefitting the oil palm farmers & create employment generation.

About Edible Oils:

  • Cooking oil is plant, animal, or synthetic fat used in frying, baking, and other types of cooking.
  • It is also used in food preparation and flavoring not involving heat, such as salad dressings and bread dippings like bread dips, and may be called edible oil.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: STATE NEWS

Delhi CM to inaugurate country’s first smog tower

  • Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will inaugurate the country’s first smog tower on August 23, 2021, at Baba Kharak Singh Marg, Connaught Place.
  • The smog tower will clean 1,000 cubic metres of air every second and reduce PM 2.5 and PM 10 levels in Delhi.
  • The smog-tower built at the cost of Rs 20 crores will contribute immensely towards this cause.
  • The smog tower will work with full force after the monsoon season.
  • The scientists of the Delhi Pollution Control Committee will accordingly assess the performance of the tower and present a monthly report.”
  • The smog-tower will yield positive results.
  • It must be noted that Central Government is also constructing one such tower at Anand Vihar.
  • This is being done after Supreme Court ordered both Delhi and Central Government to immediately install smog towers in the national capital”.

About New Delhi:

  • Chief minister: Arvind Kejriwal
  • Lieutenant Governor: Anil Baijal

Faridabad Smart City ‘ropes in’ comic book icon to aid mission

  • Faridabad Smart City Limited has roped in an unlikely collaborator to help promote its initiatives on social media – comic hero Chacha Chaudhary.
  • The social media campaign’s objective will be to promote the steps taken by the agency, which include CCTV surveillance, road safety, traffic rules, and waste management. 
  • It will involve releasing “excerpts of ‘Talking Comics’, with each social media post depicting Chacha Chaudhary and his sidekick, Sabu, “teaching and guiding people on effective use of infrastructure”.
  • “These comic strips are a unique way to interact with children as well as adults since they effectively communicate messages through pictures.
  • The format will prove to be an intelligent and quick connection to the people of Faridabad”.

About Haryana:

  • Capital: Chandigarh
  • Governor: Bandaru Dattatreya
  • Chief minister: Manohar Lal Khattar
  • National parks: Sultanpur National Park, Kalesar National Park

Gujarat: PM Modi inaugurates and lays foundation stone of multiple projects at Somnath 

  • The projects inaugurated include the Somnath Promenade, Somnath Exhibition Centre and reconstructed temple precinct of Old (Juna) Somnath. 
  • The Prime Minister also laid the foundation stone of Shree Parvati Temple during the event.
  • Prime Minister paid tribute to Sardar Patel who showed indomitable will power for the revival of India’s ancient glory. 
  • Sardar Patel linked Somnath Mandir with independent spirit of independent India.
  • it is the good fortune that taking forward the efforts of Sardar Saheb in the 75th year of Independence and imparting new splendour to Somnath Temple.
  • The Prime Minister also remembered LokmataAhilyabai Holkar who renovated several temples from Vishwanath to Somnath.
  • Country is moving forward taking inspiration from the blend of modernity and tradition in her life.

About Gujarat:

  • Capital: Gandhinagar
  • Governor: Acharya Devvrat
  • Chief minister: Vijay Rupani
  • National Parks: Gir National Park, Velavadar National Park, Marine National Park, Vansda National Park.

Aligarh district to be renamed as Harigarh

  • The Aligarh district panchayat has sent a proposal to the Uttar Pradesh government, seeking a change in the name of the city to ‘Harigarh’.
  • Another proposal to change the name of Firozabad district to Chandra Nagar is also doing the rounds.
  • The names of many cities and railway stations have been changed in Uttar Pradesh over the past few years with Allahabad-Prayagraj being the most notable of them.
  • Even earlier, many organisations had appealed to the UP government asking it to change Aligarh’s name.

About Uttar Pradesh:

  • Governor: Anandiben Patel
  • Capital: Lucknow
  • Chief minister: Yogi Adityanath
  • National Parks: Dudhwa National Park.

Govt decided to set up separate Civil Services Exam Centre at Leh

  • Union Minister Jitendra Singh has stated that the government will set up a separate Civil Services Exam Centre for Ladakh to be located at Leh. 
  • The announcement came after Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh RK Mathur called on Dr Singh in New Delhi to discuss the placement of IAS officers and other service-related matters in the context of Ladakh.
  • Union Public Service Commission UPSC will from this year have an Examination Centre at Leh which will operate for the first time for the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination 2021, scheduled to be held on 10th of October this year. 
  • This will address a long pending demand of the youth from the Ladakh region whose grievance was that they found it difficult to reach Examination Centres in other parts of the country because of the constraints of affordability of airfare and uncertain weather conditions.

About Ladakh:

  • Capital: Leh, Kargil
  • Lieutenant governor: Radha Krishna Mathur
  • National park: Hemis National Park

Tamil Nadu govt constituted 7-member panel for study of hydrocarbon projects

  • The Tamil Nadu government has constituted a seven-member committee to study the exploration of hydrocarbon projects which will be headed by Sultan Ahmed Ismail, part-time member, State Development Policy Council.
  • The environment department stated the committee constituted, August 17, will have freedom to conduct the study in areas other than the protected agricultural zone as the terms of reference have been revised.
  • The study will be conducted in areas other than the Cauvery delta region and will assess the impact of drilling technologies like hydrofracturing on groundwater and environment.
  • The committee will also study whether drilling would have an impact on the land as well as whether it destabilised the tectonic plates below the area of exploration.
  • The impact of the project on the livelihood of the people of the area will also be a subject of study.

About TamilNadu:

  • Capital: Chennai
  • Governor: Banwarilal Purohit
  • Chief minister: M. K. Stalin
  • National Parks: Guindy National Park, Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park, Indira Gandhi (Annamalai) National Park, Mudumalai National Park, Mukurthi National Park

CURRENT AFFAIRS: BUSINESS NEWS

Facebook introduces “Small Business Loans Initiative” in India

  • Facebook India announced a new programme called the “Small Business Loans Initiative”, in partnership with online lending platform Indifi, to help small and medium businesses (SMBs) that advertise on Facebook to get quick access to credit through independent lending partners.
  • India is the first country where Facebook is rolling out this programme.
  • It is open to businesses registered across 200 towns and cities of India.
  • Indifi is the first lending partner that Facebook has tied up with and the programme is built with the potential to bring more partners on board.
  • The goal of the initiative is to make business loans more easily accessible to small businesses, and reduce the credit gap within India’s MSME sector.

About Facebook:

  • Facebook, Inc., is an American multinational technology company based in Menlo Park, California.
  • It was founded in 2004 as TheFacebook by Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes, roommates and students at Harvard College.
  • CEO: Mark Zuckerberg
  • CFO: David Wehner
  • Headquarters: Menlo Park, California, United States

CURRENT AFFAIRS: BANKING NEWS

NPCI partners with Mashreq Bank to unveil UPI in the UAE

  • NPCI’s global arm NPCI International Payments Ltd (NIPL) has partnered with UAE-based Mashreq Bank to provide its mobile-based real-time payment system UPI in the gulf nation.
  • This strategic partnership will be a significant game-changer in the digital payment ecosystem in the UAE.
  • With this tie-up, more than 2 million (20 lakh) Indians travelling to the UAE are expected to benefit from Unified Payments Interface (UPI) enabled mobile applications to pay for their purchases in a shop or merchant establishment across the country.
  • Developed by National Payments Corporation of India, UPI facilitates inter-bank transactions.
  • The tie-up is very timely with growing appetite for mobile-based payments and the bank has witnessed 20 per cent month-on-month growth in pick-up rate.
  • The implementation of UPI also opens a whole new world of opportunities for enterprises in the UAE and allows them to compete with much larger retailers.
  • The partnership with Mashreq Bank will enable consumers from India to transact seamlessly using NPCI’s world-renowned UPI platform and deliver a seamless user experience.

About NPCI:

  • The National Payments Corporation of India is an umbrella organization for operating retail payments and settlement systems under the ownership of the Reserve Bank of India in India.
  • Headquarters: Mumbai

About Mashreq Bank:

  • Mashreqbank PSC is the oldest privately owned bank in the United Arab Emirates.
  • It was founded as the Bank of Oman in 1967.
  • CEO: Ahmed Abdelaal
  • Headquarters: Dubai, United Arab Emirates

RBI to launch PRISM platform 

  • The Reserve Financial institution of India (RBI) is putting in a Platform for Regulated Entities for Built-in Supervision and Monitoring (PRISM), a web-based end-to-end workflow automation system, to strengthen compliance by supervised entities (SEs).
  • This comes within the backdrop of steady engagement and extra frequent opinions of threat profiles and supervisory assessments being envisaged for supervised entities, together with banks and non-banking monetary firms.
  • With the rising depth and attain of the Reserve Financial institution’s supervisory operate, the main target of its new strategy to ‘steady supervision’ is on early identification of dangers and conduct of supervisory actions, in response to an article in RBI’s newest month-to-month bulletin.
  • That is aimed toward serving to supervised entities to strengthen their inside defences and resilience and bringing deal with root trigger evaluation (RCA).

CURRENT AFFAIRS: APPOINTMENT AND RESIGNATION NEWS

N K Singh named as President of Institute of Economic Growth

  • The 15th Finance Commission chairman, NK Singh, was elected as the president of the Institute of Economic Growth (IEG) Society on August 16.
  • He succeeds former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh who has been in the position since 1992.
  • Dr Singh recommended his name for the consideration of the IEG’s general assembly.
  • IEG’s research falls into nine broad themes—agriculture and rural development, environment and resource economics; globalisation and trade; industry, labour and welfare; macro-economic policy and modelling; population and development; health policy; and social change and social structure.

About N K Singh:

  • Nand Kishore Singh is an Indian politician, economist and former Indian Administrative Service officer.
  • He is a senior member of the Bharatiya Janata Party since March 2014 after having served as a Member of Parliament in the Rajya Sabha from Bihar for the Janata Dal.

BARC India appointed Nakul Chopra as CEO

  • Broadcast Audience Research Council announced the appointment of Nakul Chopra as its chief executive.
  • Chopra will replace Sunil Lulla, who is leaving the TV audience body to pursue entrepreneurial ambitions.
  • He has served as the chairman of BARC in FY19, after being appointed to the board in 2016.

About BARC:

  • Broadcast Audience Research Council India is a joint-industry body founded by bodies that represent Broadcasters, Advertisers and Advertising & Media Agencies. 
  • It is also the world’s largest television measurement science industry-body.

Apurva Chandra appointed as I&B Secretary

  • Apurva Chandra, a 1988-batch IAS officer of Maharashtra cadre, has been appointed the secretary of information and broadcasting ministry. 
  • Chandra will succeed Amit Khare, the current higher education secretary who holds the additional charge of the post of I&B secretary.
  • Khare is scheduled to retire in September.

About Apurva Chandra:

  • Chandra, a post-graduate in Structural Engineering from IIT Delhi, currently holds the post of labour & employment ministry secretary.
  • “He has a long experience of dealing with issues relating to industries while working in Government of Maharashtra and Government of India”.
  • Prior to this he was serving as Special Director General, Defence Acquisition, Ministry of Defence, a position where he played a key role in contributing towards AtmaNirbhar Bharat in terms of greater defence acquisition from domestic industry and at the same time keeping Defence Forces equipped with all its challenging requirements”.

CURRENT AFFAIRS : SUMMITS & CONFERENCES

Arjun Ram Meghwal participates in 18th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Culture Ministers’ meeting 

  • On Aug 18, 2021, Minister of State for Culture, Arjun Ram Meghwal participated in the SCO Culture Ministers Meeting hosted by Tajikistan during their ongoing Chairship of SCO in 2021 through virtual mode.
  • During the meeting, discussion was held on the development of cultural and humanitarian cooperation, prospects for cooperation in the field of culture within the SCO, including in the post-pandemic period and importance of cultural cooperation within the SCO, which has enormous potential for strengthening inter-state understanding.

About Shanghai cooperation organisation (SCO) :

  • Founded – 15 June 2001.
  • Headquarter – Beijing, China
  • Secretary General: Vladimir Norov
  • Members
  • Eight permanent Member States – China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Pakistan, Tajikistan and  Uzbekistan.
  • Four Observer States – Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran, and Mongolia.

CURRENT AFFAIRS : DEFENCE NEWS

Navies of India & Australia signs Joint Guidance for the Australia- India Navy to Navy Relationship document to boost naval ties                    

  • On Aug 18, 2021, Chiefs of the Indian and Australian navies signed a Joint Guidance for the Australia- India Navy to Navy Relationship’ document.
  • The signing ceremony was held via video conference between Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh, and Admiral Michael J Noonan, Chief of Navy, Australian Navy.
  • The document is aligned to the ‘2020 Comprehensive Strategic Partnership’ agreed to by prime ministers of the two nations, and aims to ensure a shared approach to regional and global security challenges.
  • Comprehensive Strategic Partnership’, Mutual Logistics Support Agreement, conduct of trilateral Maritime Security Workshop and RAN participation in Exercise MALABAR are significant milestones which underline the role played by both Navies in bolstering this relationship in recent times.

About Joint Guidance :

  • The Joint Guidance would serve as a guideline document to showcase the intent of both the Navies to work together bi/ multi-laterally.
  • The broad scope of the guidance is focussed on developing mutual understanding, cooperating for regional security, collaborating in mutually beneficial activities and to develop interoperability.
  • The document also promotes peace, security, stability and prosperity in the Indo – Pacific region.
  • The highlights of the document include close cooperation in regional and multilateral fora, including Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS), Western Pacific Naval Symposium (WPNS), Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA)and Expert Working Groups subordinate to the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus framework.

About Indian Navy :

  • Founded: 26 January 1950
  • Vice Chief of the Naval Staff (VCNS): Vice Admiral Satish Namdeo Ghormade
  • Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff (DCNS): Vice Admiral Ravneet Singh
  • Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS): Admiral Karambir Singh
  • Commander-in-Chief: President Ram Nath Kovind

About Royal Australian Navy :

  • Founded: 10 July 1911
  • Headquarters: Canberra, Australia
  • Commander-in-chief : Governor-General David Hurley
  • Chief of the Defence Force : General Angus Campbell
  • Vice Chief of the Defence Force : Vice Admiral David Johnston
  • Chief of Navy : Vice Admiral Michael Noonan

About Australia :

  • Prime minister: Scott Morrison
  • Capital: Canberra
  • Currency: Australian dollar

CURRENT AFFAIRS : APPS & SERVICES

Amitabh Bachchan Becomes India’s First Celebrity Voice For Amazon’s Alexa

  • Indian cinema icon Amitabh Bachchan has become India’s First Celebrity to lend his voice for Amazon’s Alexa.
  • Alexa users will have to pay Rs 149 ($2) for the first year to add Amitab Bachchan’s voice to the device.(Starting the second year, the annual price will move to $4.)
  • His voice will be available both in English and Hindi language.
  • The feature initially arrived in the US with the voice of American actor and producer Samuel L. Jackson in 2019.

Note :

  • In 2020, Amazon acquired Bachchan’s “Gulabo Sitabo” movie rights for streaming globally on Prime Video.

About Amazon’s Alexa :

  • Amazon’s Alexa is a virtual assistant AI technology developed by Amazon.
  • It is first used in the Amazon Echo smart speaker and the Echo Dot, Echo Studio and Amazon Tap speakers developed by Amazon Lab126.
  • It is capable of voice interaction, music playback, making to-do lists, setting alarms, streaming podcasts, playing audiobooks, and providing weather, traffic, sports, and other real-time information.

Kotak Mahindra Bank launches DIY repayment platform – ‘Neo Collections’

  • Kotak Mahindra Bank has partnered with fintech firm Creditas Solutions to launch a digital repayment platform called ‘Neo Collections’ which is a Do It Yourself Digital Repayment Platform for missed loan repayments.
  • The digital repayment platform is powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).

Objective :

  • To make repayments for outstanding loans more convenient for the customers.

About Neo Collections :

  • The platform is intuitive, using contextualised and optimized customer interactions, allowing Kotak to drive intelligent customer engagement for superior collections success at lower cost.
  • It provides a customized and non-intrusive experience to help customers seamlessly manage their dues on their own.
  • It analyzes historical and also live customer interaction data, and deploys sophisticated behavioural models for creating individual customer-level personas that take into account the unique choices of each customer.
  • It also determines the best course of action by providing personalized repayment plans or payment resolution options in line with the internal credit guidelines of Kotak Mahindra Bank.

Note :

  • Co-founder of Creditas Solutions : Anshuman Panwar

About Kotak Mahindra Bank :

  • CEO: Uday Kotak
  • Headquarters: Mumbai
  • Founder: Uday Kotak
  • Founded: February 2003

CURRENT AFFAIRS : RANKING & INDEX

Hurun Global 500 List: Apple tops, Reliance Industries is India’s most valued company    

  • According to the Hurun Global 500 Most Valuable Companies list 2021, Globally, Apple was ranked the most valuable company, up 15 percent to $2.4 trillion.

World’s top six valuable companies in Hurun Global 500 List :

  1. Apple
  2. Microsoft
  3. Amazon
  4. Alphabet
  5. Facebook
  • From India Reliance Industries tops (USD 188 billion) ranked at 57 on Hurun’s top 500 companies.
  • There are a total 12 Indian companies in this list.
  • Microsoft is second while Amazon is second in the list.
  • Country-wise, the USA tops the list with 243 companies, followed by China 47, Japan 30 and the UK
  • Meanwhile India is ranked 9th with 12 companies.
  • Wipro, HCL Technologies and Asian Paints were the new Indian entrants among the top 500 companies in the world.

Note :

  • Chairman and Chief Researcher, Hurun India : Rupert Hoogewerf
  • MD and Chief Researcher, Hurun India : Anas Rahman Junaid

About Hurun Global 500 :

  • Hurun Global 500, published by Hurun Research Institute.
  • The Hurun Research Institute released the Hurun Global 500, a list of the 500 most valuable non-state-controlled companies in the world ranked according to their value, defined as market capitalization for listed companies and valuations for non-listed companies.
  • The cut-off date for the latest list was 15 July 2021.

2021 Global cryptocurrency adoption index : India ranks second Position

  • Out of 154 Countries India has been ranked second in terms of crypto adoption in the 2021 Global Crypto Adoption Index by blockchain data platform Chainalysis.

Aim of the index :

  • To highlight the countries with the greatest cryptocurrency adoption by retail investors.

Top 3 in 2021 Global cryptocurrency adoption index :

  1. Vietnam – with a index score of 1
  2. India – with a index score of 0.37
  3. Pakistan – with a index score of 0.36
  • The worldwide crypto adoption grew by 880 percent between June 2020 and July 2021.
  • The US and China’s ranking dipped from sixth to eighth and from fourth to thirteenth respectively.( due to falling P2P volumes in the two countries compared to worldwide volumes)
  • The ranking was based on three metrics including peer-to-peer (P2P) exchange trading volume and value received.

About Chainalysis :

  • Headquarters : New York

CURRENT AFFAIRS : SPORTS NEWS

Indian 4×400 quartet clinches bronze in World Athletics U20 Championship

  • The Indian 4x400m mixed relay team clinched the bronze medal with a timing of 3:20.60 seconds at the World Athletics U20 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya.
  • The team consisted of Bharat Sridhar, Priya Mohan, Summy and
  • The Nigerian team won the gold medal with a championships record of 3:19.70, while the Polish quartet won the silver medal with a season’s best timing of 3:19.80.
  • This is India’s fifth medal at the Athletics U-20 World Championships & with this bronze India have now won medals at four successive Athletics U-20 World Championships.

About World Athletics U20 Championships :

  • The World Athletics U20 Championships is a biennial world championships for the sport of athletics organised by the World Athletics, contested by athletes in the under-20 athletics age category.

Manika Batra, Sathiyan Gnanasekaran Clinch 2021 WTT Contender Mixed Doubles Title In Budapest

  • India’s Manika Batra and Sathiyan Gnanasekaran won the mixed doubles title at the 2021 WTT Contender event in Hungary’s Budapest.
  • Manika and Sathiyan beat 94th ranked Hungarian pair Dora Madarasz and Nandor Ecseki 3-1 in the final.
  • With this win they became the first Indian table tennis players to win a WTT Contender title.

About Manika Batra :

  • As of November 2020, she is the top-ranked female table tennis player in India
  • Manika Batra ranked 62nd in the world as of July 2021.
  • She won three medals at the 2015 Commonwealth Table Tennis Championships.
  • In the 2016 South Asian Games, she won three gold medals.
  • At the 2020 Summer Olympics, Batra reached the third round of the women’s singles event, becoming the first Indian paddler to reach the third round at the Olympics in a singles event

Awards & Honours :

  • In 2020, she was awarded the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna.

About Sathiyan Gnanasekaran :

  • Sathiyan Gnanasekaran is the first Indian paddler to sign a contract with Okayama Rivets for the Japanese T-league.
  • He was a member of the Indian team that took the bronze in the 2011 Junior World Championships.
  • In May 2019, Sathiyan attained his career best World ranking of 24 and became the first Indian paddler ever to break into the World Top-25 ITTF rankings.

CURRENT AFFAIRS : OBITUARIES

India’s First Dronacharya Awardee & PT Usha’s coach OM Nambiar passes away        

  • On Aug 19, 2021, Renowned athletics coach & Sprint queen P.T. Usha’s coach M. Nambiar passed away.
  • He was 89.

About OM Nambiar :

  • Born in 1932, Kerala.
  • Nambiar joined the Indian Air Force in 1955 and continued his athletics career.
  • Nambiar coached PT Usha, who is the first Indian sportswoman to enter the Olympics final at the age of twenty.

Awards & Honours :

  • In 1985, OM Nambiar was awarded Dronacharya award & in 2021, Nambiar was conferred the Padma Shri.

Daily CA On Aug 20 :

  • Akshay Urja Diwas is celebrated every year on August 20 & It is an awareness campaign aimed at enlightening the masses about the benefits of renewable energy resources in their lives as well as that of our blue planet.
  • Sadbhavana Diwas (Harmony Day) is celebrated in India on 20th August every year.
  • World Mosquito Day is observed every year on August 20 & the theme of World Mosquito Day 2021 is “Reaching the zero malaria targets”.
  • In a bid to use technology to act against those violating traffic rules, the Union ministry of road transport and highways issued a notification amending the Central Motor Vehicles Rule 1989 for what it called “Electronic Monitoring and Enforcement of Road Safety.” 
  • The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved a Rs 77.45 crore package for the revival of state-run North Eastern Regional Agricultural Marketing Corporation Ltd.
  • President Ram Nath Kovind accepted credentials from four envoys in a virtual ceremony.
  • President-Designate of 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) Alok Sharma welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s global leadership in setting up the International Solar Alliance.
  • The Uttar Pradesh government has decided to set up a training centre for Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) commandos in Saharanpur’s Deoband, known for its Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband.
  • India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) has revised GDP growth rate to 9.4 per cent for FY22 from its earlier estimate of 9.6 per cent. 
  • RBI to introduce ‘Regulatory GAAR’ for round tripping
  • State Bank of India (SBI) Life Insurance recently announced the launch of ‘SBI Life eShield Next’ – a new age-term insurance policy, which raises or ‘levels up’ the protection coverage with the life milestones of the insured.
  • The Reserve Bank came out with revised guidelines for the hiring of lockers under which the liability of banks will be limited to 100 times its annual rent in case of fire, theft, building collapse or frauds by bank employees.
  • Olympian R. Sreejesh will be made brand ambassador of adventure tourism in Kerala.
  • Nitin Chugh has resigned from the position of Managing Director and CEO of Ujjivan Small Finance Bank, a subsidiary of the listed entity Ujjivan Financial Services, with effect from September 30.
  • The government has appointed Lalit Kumar Chandel, Economic Adviser, Department of Financial Services, on the board of Bank of Maharashtra.
  • The Appointment Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC) has appointed Shanti Lal Jain as the Managing Director (MD) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of lndian Bank for a period of three years.
  • The Government of India and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed a $500 million loan to expand the metro rail network in Bengaluru with the construction of two new metro lines totaling 56 km in length.
  • The Ministry of Tourism has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with MakeMyTrip (India) Private Limited and Ibibo Group Private Limited as part of its ongoing efforts to strengthen the hospitality and tourism industry in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic.
  • On the occasion of World Photography Day on 19 August, 2021, a biopic of acclaimed photographer-photo journalist, Raghu Rai will be streamed by Films Division on its website and YouTube channels.
  • On Aug 19, 2021, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh launched Defence India Startup Challenge (DISC) 5.0 under Innovations for Defence Excellence – Defence Innovation Organisation (iDEX-DIO) in New Delhi through video conferencing.
  • Shri Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare chaired the event  Aarogya Dhara- 2.0 to mark the completion of 2 Cr treatments under Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY).
  • Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) has developed an advanced chaff technology to safeguard fighter aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) against threats.
  • A new book titled ‘Operation Khukri’, has been written by Major General Rajpal Punia & co-authored by his daughter, Damini.
  • On August 18, The U20 World Athletics Championships began in Nairobi, Kenya will conclude on August 22.

Daily CA On Aug 21 :

  • World Senior Citizens’ Day is celebrated on August 21 & the theme is, “Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing?”
  • International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism Observed on Aug 21
  • Sanskrit Week has been celebrated from August 19 to August 25 to promote and popularise the ancient language.
  • The Union Heavy Industries Minister Mahendra Nath Pandey inaugurated the country’s very first Solar Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station at the Karnal Lake Resort.
  • In a major boost to the employment-generating textiles sector, the government constituted an eight-member committee to double the production and quadruple the exports of handlooms in three years.
  • The Union Cabinet has approved implementation of the National Mission on Edible Oils – Oil Palm.
  • Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will inaugurate the country’s first smog tower on August 23, 2021, at Baba Kharak Singh Marg, Connaught Place.
  • Faridabad Smart City Limited has roped in an unlikely collaborator to help promote its initiatives on social media – comic hero Chacha Chaudhary.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of multiple projects in Somnath, Gujarat via video conferencing.
  • The Aligarh district panchayat has sent a proposal to the Uttar Pradesh government, seeking a change in the name of the city to ‘Harigarh’.
  • Union Minister Jitendra Singh has stated that the government will set up a separate Civil Services Exam Centre for Ladakh to be located at Leh. 
  • The Tamil Nadu government has constituted a seven-member committee to study the exploration of hydrocarbon projects which will be headed by Sultan Ahmed Ismail, part-time member, State Development Policy Council.
  • Facebook India announced a new programme called the “Small Business Loans Initiative”, in partnership with online lending platform Indifi, to help small and medium businesses (SMBs) that advertise on Facebook to get quick access to credit through independent lending partners.
  • NPCI’s global arm NPCI International Payments Ltd (NIPL) has partnered with UAE-based Mashreq Bank to provide its mobile-based real-time payment system UPI in the gulf nation.
  • The Reserve Financial institution of India (RBI) is putting in a Platform for Regulated Entities for Built-in Supervision and Monitoring (PRISM), a web-based end-to-end workflow automation system, to strengthen compliance by supervised entities (SEs).
  • The 15th Finance Commission chairman, NK Singh, was elected as the president of the Institute of Economic Growth (IEG) Society on August 16.
  • Broadcast Audience Research Council announced the appointment of Nakul Chopra as its chief executive.
  • Apurva Chandra, a 1988-batch IAS officer of Maharashtra cadre, has been appointed the secretary of information and broadcasting ministry. 
  • On Aug 18, 2021, Minister of State for Culture, Arjun Ram Meghwal participated in the SCO Culture Ministers Meeting hosted by Tajikistan during their ongoing Chairship of SCO in 2021 through virtual mode.
  • On Aug 18, 2021, Chiefs of the Indian and Australian navies signed a Joint Guidance for the Australia- India Navy to Navy Relationship’ document.
  • Indian cinema icon Amitabh Bachchan has become India’s First Celebrity to lend his voice for Amazon’s Alexa.
  • Kotak Mahindra Bank has partnered with fintech firm Creditas Solutions to launch a digital repayment platform called ‘Neo Collections’ which is a Do It Yourself Digital Repayment Platform for missed loan repayments.
  • According to the Hurun Global 500 Most Valuable Companies list 2021, Globally, Apple was ranked the most valuable company, up 15 percent to $2.4 trillion.
  • Out of 154 Countries India has been ranked second in terms of crypto adoption in the 2021 Global Crypto Adoption Index by blockchain data platform Chainalysis.
  • The Indian 4x400m mixed relay team clinched the bronze medal with a timing of 3:20.60 seconds at the World Athletics U20 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya.
  • India’s Manika Batra and Sathiyan Gnanasekaran won the mixed doubles title at the 2021 WTT Contender event in Hungary’s Budapest.
  • On Aug 19, 2021, Renowned athletics coach & Sprint queen P.T. Usha’s coach O.M. Nambiar passed away.
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