Current Affairs 30th July 2021| Current Affairs News

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CURRENT AFFAIRS: IMPORTANT DAYS

World Day against Trafficking in Persons – Observed on July 30

  • United Nations observes 30 July every year as World Day Against Trafficking in Persons.
  • The 2021 theme for World Day against Trafficking in Persons is Victims “Voices Lead the Way”.
  • This year’s theme puts victims of human trafficking at the centre of the campaign and will highlight the importance of listening to and learning from survivors of human trafficking.
  • In 2013, the General Assembly designated July 30 as the World Day against Trafficking in Persons to raise awareness of the situation of victims of human trafficking and for the promotion and protection of their rights.
  • The campaign portrays survivors as key actors in the fight against human trafficking and focusses on the crucial role they play in establishing effective measures to prevent this crime, identify and rescue victims and support them on their road to rehabilitation.
  • Many victims of human trafficking have experienced ignorance or misunderstanding in their attempts to get help.
  • They have had traumatic post-rescue experiences during identification interviews and legal proceedings.
  • Some have faced revictimization and punishment for crimes they were forced to commit by their traffickers.
  • Others have been subjected to stigmatization or received inadequate support.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: NATIONAL NEWS

Govt. to introduce Deposit Insurance Credit Guarantee Corporation Bill 2021

  • The Union Cabinet has cleared the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation (DICGC) Bill, 2021, which will allow depositors to withdraw up to Rs 5 lakh in 90 days.
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman stated that the announcement will cover 3 per cent of all deposit accounts and 50.9 percent of the deposit value.
  • This compares with the global deposit insurance coverage of 80 per cent of all accounts and 20-30 percent of the deposit value.
  • The DICGC Bill, 2021, will cover banks that have been already placed under moratorium, and will insure savings deposits, fixed deposits, current and recurring deposits.

About DICGC:

  • Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation is a wholly owned subsidiary of Reserve Bank of India.
  • It was established on 15 July 1978 under the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation Act, 1961 for the purpose of providing insurance of deposits and guaranteeing of credit facilities.
  • As per the DICGC guidelines, each depositor in a bank is insured up to a maximum of Rs 5 lakhfor both principal and interest amounts held by her/him in the same right and same capacity as on the date of liquidation/cancellation of the bank’s license or the date on which the scheme of amalgamation/merger/reconstruction.

Lok Sabha passes Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill 2021

  • The Lok Sabha passed the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2021 which was introduced in the Lower House on July 26.
  • Union Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tabled the bill in the Lok Sabha, which amends the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016.
  • The Bill replaces the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Ordinance, 2021, which was promulgated on April 4, 2021.
  • The Bill introduces an alternate insolvency resolution process for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), called the pre-packaged insolvency resolution process (PIRP).

About Insolvency and Bankruptcy:

  • The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 is the bankruptcy law of India which seeks to consolidate the existing framework by creating a single law for insolvency and bankruptcy.
  • The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2015 was introduced in Lok Sabha in December 2015.
  • While insolvency is a situation which arises due to inability to pay off the debts due to insufficient assets, bankruptcy is a situation wherein application is made to an authority declaring insolvency and seeking to be declared as bankrupt, which will continue until discharge.

DRDO now get 2% royalty from Dr Reddy’s on sale of Covid drug 2-DG in India

  • Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt stated that, The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will get two per cent royalty from Dr Reddy’s Laboratory (DRL) on the sale ofanti-Covid drug 2-DG.
  • The defence ministry mentioned that the DRDO developed the technology along with Hyderabad-based Dr Reddy’s Lab, adding that the pricing is solely decided by DRL.
  • The actual price fixed by Dr Reddy’s Laboratory isRs 990 per sachet.

DRDO’S 2-DG DRUG:

  • The anti-Covid drug 2-deoxy-D-Glucose (2-DG) was developed by the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS), a laboratory of the DRDO, in collaboration with Dr Reddy’s.
  • It is an oral drug.
  • Emergency use approval for anti-Covid-19 therapeutic application of the drug was granted on May 1, 2021.
  • In June,Dr Reddy’s Laboratories announced the commercial launch of 2-DG drug.
  • Dr Reddy’s had stated that it will supply the anti-Covid drug to major government hospitals as well as private hospitals across the country.

Union Govt to set up Garima Grihas for transgender persons to provide safe shelter

  • Union Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot e-launched a ‘National Portal for Transgender Persons’ and e-inaugurated a ‘Garima Greh: A Shelter Home for Transgender Persons’ in Vadodara, Gujarat.
  • Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot stated that this National Portal for Transgender Persons has been developed within 2 months of Notification of Transgender Persons (Protectionof Rights) Rules, 2020 on 29 September, 2020.
  • This highly useful Portal would help a transgender person in applying for a Certificate and Identity card digitally from anywhere in the country.
  • The most important benefit is that it helps the transgender person to get the I-Card without any physical interface and without having to visit any office.
  • Through the Portal, they can monitor the status of their application that ensures transparency in the process.

PM Modi initiates SAFAL Assessment Framework for CBSE Students

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a new framework to assess students of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).
  • The new framework, named SAFAL (structured assessment for analyzing learning levels), is a competency-based assessment framework to move away from the “rote-learning system” of heavy memorization, according to the CBSE.
  • The ministry of education stated The framework will be used to assess 50 lakh students in 25,000 CBSE schools across India.
  • However, the SAFAL results will not be used in any manner by schools for promotion of students to the next grade.
  • Prime Minister Narendar Modi, during the live telecast: With SAFAL a scientific method for assessing students’ intelligence has been developed.
  • This will reduce the students’ fear towards exams.
  • They will have the eagerness to pursue new skills, new innovations, the possibilities are endless.

COVID BEEP-India’s first Physiological Parameters Monitoring System

  • Government is taking various steps to undertake the large-scale production of COVID BEEP stated by the Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh.
  • COVID BEEP (Continuous Oxygenation & Vital Information Detection Biomed ECIL ESIC Pod), India’s first indigenous, cost effective, wireless physiological parameters monitoring system for COVID-19 patients, developed by ESIC Medical College Hyderabad in collaboration with IIT Hyderabad and Department Of Atomic Energy.
  • The latest version of COVID BEEP has incorporated the following:
  • NIBP monitoring: Affected aged people have the highest death rates in COVID-19. Hence, NIBP monitoring becomes imperative in this context.
  • ECG monitoring: The drugs used as prophylaxis and /or treatment like Hydroxychloroquine and Azithromycin etc. have effects on the heart and hence the importance of ECG monitoring.
  • The Respiratory Rate: Is calculated by Bio Impedance method.
  • COVID BEEP will greatly reduce the transmission risk as well as help save resources like PPEs.
  • A proposal has been submitted to the Ministry of Labour & Employment for the large-scale deployment of COVID BEEPS.

Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill passed

  • The Rajya Sabha on July 28, 2021, passed the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill 2021, thereby amending the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children), Act, 2015.
  • The Bill was already passed in the Lok Sabha in March 2021.
  • The amendment of the Act was taken up after the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) in a survey of children’s shelter homes in India found that over 7,600 children were living in poor living conditions with no access to basic amenities.

Key points

  • The Act stresses shifting the accountability to the district magistrates or additional district magistrates to take responsibility for the well-being of vulnerable children in shelter homes across the country.
  • The district magistrates are now empowered to sign adoption orders under Section 61 of the Juvenile Justice Act thus making the process of adoption faster and more compliant with rules.
  • The Act now also calls for all Child Care Institutions to be registered in line with recommendations of the district magistrate.
  • The Act also entrusts DMs with the responsibility to oversee and evaluate the functioning of child welfare committees, district child protection units, specialized juvenile police units, and juvenile justice boards.
  • The Act has redefined the eligibility parameters for the appointment of CWC members.
  • Further, the amended provisions of the Act have introduced criteria for disqualification of CWC members to ensure the appointment of people with integrity and requisite competence.
  • Currently, the Act outlines three categories of offences – petty, serious, and heinous.
  • The amendment states that offences with a maximum sentence of more than 7 years imprisonment, but no minimum sentence, or a minimum sentence of less than 7 years is provided shall be treated as a serious offence under the Act.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Nagaland Bhoot Jolokia chillies exported to London

  • Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri noted that the “king of chillies” from Nagaland, also known as the Bhoot Jolokia (ghost pepper), has been exported to the United Kingdom via Guwahati by air for the first time.
  • Sharing images of the fiery chillies, also known as “Raja Mircha”, the Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs recalled his visit to a vegetable market in Meghalaya with his wife and former diplomat Lakshmi Puri in August 2019 when they had a “brush” with the chillies at a local shop.
  • The export has come as a major boost to the trade of products with Geographical Indications (GI) from the north-eastern region.
  • The king of chillies from Nagaland exported to London via Guwahati for the first time.

About UK:

  • Prime minister: Boris Johnson
  • Capital: London
  • Currency: Pound sterling

19-year-old Shehroze Kashif from Pakistan become the world’s youngest person to summit K2

  • On July 27, 2021, A 19-year-old Pakistani Shehroze Kashif became the youngest person to reach the summit of K2 with Supplemental oxygen.
  • Before Kashif, Sajid Sadpara, was the youngest person to have climbed K2 at the age of 20.

About Shehroze Kashif :

  • Shehroze Kashif from Lahore.
  • At the age of 17, Kashif scaled the world’s 12th-highest mountain, the 8,047-metre (26,400 foot) Broad Peak & then after which he was called “The Broad Boy”
  • He started climbing mountains at the age of 11 with the first one being
    • K2 is the second-highest mountain on Earth, after Mount Everest.
    • Makra Peak, followed by Musa ka Musalla and Chembra Peak at age 12, Mingli Sar in Shimshal at age 13 and Khurdopin Pass at age 15 and Khusar Gang in alpine style at 18 years of age.

Note :

  • It is at an altitude of 8,611-metre from mean sea level.
  • Nicknames for K2 are The King of Mountains and The Mountaineers’ Mountain

Recent News :

  • In May 2021, he became the youngest Pakistani to scale Mount Everest, the world’s highest mountain.

About Alpine Club :

  • Alpine Club is the world’s first mountaineering club.
  • The primary focus of the club is to support mountaineers who climb in the Alps and the Greater Ranges of the world’s mountains.
  • Founder: William Mathews
  • Founded: 22 December 1857
  • Headquarters: London, United Kingdom

About Pakistan :

  • Capital: Islamabad
  • President: Arif Alvi
  • Prime minister: Imran Khan
  • Currency: Pakistani rupee

US announces USD 25 million aid to support COVID-19 vaccination in India

  • US will provide $25 million to support India’s vaccination programme
  • Committed to further strengthening of ties between the two countries.
  • Also The US government will partner with India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, as well as state governments to support vaccine supply chain logistics, to address misinformation and vaccine hesitancy, and train healthcare workers to deliver vaccines safely and effectively across India.
  • The US Agency for International Development (USAID) will also collaborate with key stakeholders, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, the WHO, and GAVI to promote equitable vaccine delivery and strengthen pandemic preparedness.
  • Since March 2020, USAID has allocated more than $226 million (about Rs 1,670 crore) in Covid-19 relief to India, including more than $100 million (about Rs 740 crore rupees) to support India’s response to the recent surge and more than $50 million (about Rs 370 crore rupees) in emergency supplies.

Global Education Summit in London

  • The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) Global Education Summit will take place on July 28 and 29, 2021
  • The United Kingdom and Kenya are co-hosting a two-day Global Education Summit in London to raise US$5 billion for the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), which funds public education in up to 90 countries and territories.
  • These countries are home to more than 80 percent of the world’s out-of-school
  • The GPE’s commitment to transform education systems should be grounded in a pledge to fulfil the right to free, quality, inclusive education in practice, not just rhetorically.
  • Education ministries should also pledge to guarantee universal free primary and secondary education, and immediately reverse any policies that undermine this promise, including those that generate inequalities and perpetuate discrimination.
  • The summit is happening as governments face huge challenges due to Covid-19 pandemic-related disruptions.
  • The on-going disruption to children’s education has highlighted the need for governments to devote more attention and resources to address the longstanding inequalities in education systems exacerbated by the pandemic.
  • To tackle these challenges, education ministries should deliver bold national funding pledges that meet international targets and protect education budgets from possible austerity cuts.
  • Not doing so would short change hundreds of millions of children whose education was sacrificed during the pandemic, many of whom have yet to return to school.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: STATE NEWS

Karnataka: 1st state to reserve jobs for transgender persons

  • Karnataka became the first state in India to reserve jobs in public employment in favour of transgender persons.
  • The state government informed the division bench of the Karnataka high court of Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Suraj Govindaraj that it has amended the Karnataka Civil Services (General Recruitment) Rules, 1977 to provide for 1% horizontal reservation for transgenders.
  • A draft notification issued on May 13 proposed to amend Rule 9 for the purpose.
  • The proposed amendment to Rule 9 Sub Rule (1D) was inserted to provide for 1% of vacancies to be filled in any service or post by the state government from among the transgender candidates in each category of general, Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and in each of the categories among the Other Backward Classes.

About Karnataka:

  • Capital: Bengaluru
  • Governor: Thawar Chand Gehlot
  • Chief minister:Basavaraj Bommai
  • National Parks: Bannerghatta National Park, Bandipur National Park, Nagarhole National Park, Kudremukh National Park, Anshi National Park.

Rajasthan introduces ‘Niryatak Bano’ mission to help local traders take businesses aboard

  • Rajasthan government’s Industries Department and the apex industrial development body, the Rajasthan Industrial Development and Investment Corporation (RIICO), have launched a campaign to help local traders in expanding their businesses to foreign countries.
  • The campaign “Mission Niryatak Bano” is planned in six steps to register and handhold the local traders willing to expand their business to foreign countries.
  • The campaign will cover assistance of local traders from training, securing necessary documentation, registration in Rajasthan Export Promotion Council and even support in exports and trade operations.

About Rajasthan:

  • Capital: Jaipur
  • Governor: Kalraj Mishra
  • Chief Minister: Ashok Gehlot
  • National Parks: KeoladeoNational Park, Ranthambore National Park.

Odisha govt implements One Nation One Ration card scheme across State

  • The Odisha government has implemented the one nation one ration card scheme.
  • Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik launched the scheme across the state.
  • The scheme allows the beneficiaries to lift his or her quota of food grains from any of the fair price shops of his or her choice, both within and outside the state.
  • Inside the state alone, the beneficiaries will have more than 10000 fair price shops for their ration, to choose from.
  • The state government also launched a vitamin-added rice distribution scheme under the public distribution system in the tribal dominated and remote district of Malkangiri as a pilot project.
  • The scheme is supposed to address the nutritional needs, particularly of the women and children.

About Odisha:

  • Capital: Bhubaneswar
  • Governor: Ganeshi Lal
  • Chief minister:Naveen Patnaik
  • National Parks: Similipal National Park, Bhitarkanika National Park.

Manipur CM unveils Model Hepatitis B Treatment Centres on World Hepatitis Day

  • On the occasion of World Hepatitis Day 2021, Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh launched Model Hepatitis B Treatment Centres at two hospitals in Manipur.
  • The Model Hepatitis B Treatment Centres are opened at Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Science (JNIMS) and Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS).
  • The centres were launched during the function held at CM Secretariat on the occasion of World Hepatitis Day 2021 under the theme- Hepatitis Can’t Wait.
  • The Chief Minister stated that treatment of Hepatitis B and its medicines would be made available free of cost at the Model Treatment Centres launched.
  • The opening of treatment centres would be helpful in controlling the infectious diseases in the State to a large extent.
  • Stressing on the status of National Viral Hepatitis Control Program (NVHCP) in the State, the Chief Minister informed that 29,414 people had been screened for Hepatitis B and 35,036 for Hepatitis C so far.
  • Of the total screened, 1,519 were found positive and 1,225 are undergoing treatment. 861 had undergone complete treatment.

About Manipur:                                                                                                                                       

  • Capital: Imphal
  • Governor: Najma Heptulla
  • Chief minister:  Biren Singh
  • National Park: Keibul LamjaoNational Park

Kerala police initiates ‘Pink Protection’ project for women safety

  • The Kerala Police has launched a new initiative called the “Pink Protection” project for the protection of women in public, private and digital spaces.
  • For the project, 10 cars, 40 two-wheelers, including Bullet bikes and 20 bicycles, were allotted, which were flagged off by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
  • The “Pink Protection” project aims to prevent dowry-related issues, cyber-bullying and humiliation in public places.
  • The project has 10 components, one of which is activating the existing Pink Police Patrol system.
  • The system has been named “Pink Janamaithri Beat”, under which police officials will conduct regular house visits to collect information on domestic violence.
  • They will collect information from panchayat members, neighbours and other locals and hand it over to the Station House Officers for further action.

About Kerala:

  • Governor: Arif Mohammad Khan
  • Capital: Thiruvananthapuram
  • Chief minister: Pinarayi Vijayan
  • National parks: Eravikulam National Park, Silent Valley National Park , Pampadum Shola National Park, Mathikettan Shola National Park, Anamudi Shola National Park.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: BUSINESS NEWS

Three India-based enterprises among UN’s Best Small Business winners

  • Three Indian businesses are among the winners of a United Nations-sponsored global competition for the “Best Small Businesses” that provide creative, varied, and impactful solutions for increasing access to healthy and sustainable food.
  • Fifty small and medium-sized businesses from all around the globe have been named the Best Small Businesses of the UN Food Systems Summit’s “Good Food for All”
  • “Edible Routes Private Limited”, “Oorja Development Solutions India”, and “Taru Naturals” are the winners from India.
  • The 50 winners were chosen from almost 2,000 applications from 135 countries, and their solutions to improve access to nutritious, sustainable food are inspiring, diverse, and impactful.
  • The UN stated that they will also split US$ 100,000 in monetary rewards.

Maruti Suzuki tie-up with Savitribai Phule Pune University to train youth

  • The country’s leading car maker Maruti Suzuki India stated it has partnered with Savitribai Phule Pune University, Maharashtra, to train the youth in automobile retail.
  • Maruti Suzuki India Ltd(MSIL) stated A customized three-year ‘Bachelor of Vocational Studies in Retail Management’ course will be offered to students by the university with support from the company.
  • The curriculum will comprise one-year classroom training followed by two-year on-the-job trainingat Maruti Suzuki authorized dealerships.

About the training:

  • The curriculum for ‘Bachelor of Vocational Studies in Retail Management’ has been developed by the two partners with an enhanced focus on value education, work ethics, soft skills, and learning Indian and Japanese work culture.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: BANKING & ECONOMY

RBI imposes Rs 5 crore penalty on Axis Bank

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has imposed a monetary penalty of Rs 5 crore on Axis Bank for contravention of certain provisions of directions issued by the RBI, encompassing those on cyber security framework.
  • The directions include ‘Strengthening the Controls of Payment Ecosystem between Sponsor Banks and SCBs/UCBs as a Corporate Customer’, ‘Cyber Security Framework in Banks’, ‘RBI (Financial Services provided by Banks) Directions, 2016’, ‘Financial Inclusion- Access to Banking Services – Basic Savings Bank Deposit Account’ and ‘Frauds – Classification and Reporting’.
  • The RBI had conducted statutory inspections for supervisory evaluation (ISE) of the bank with reference to its financial position as on 31 March 2017 (ISE 2017), 31 March 2018 (ISE 2018) and 31 March 2019 (ISE 2019).

About Axis Bank:

  • Axis Bank Limited is an Indian banking and financial services company headquartered in Mumbai, Maharashtra.
  • It sells financial services to large and mid-size companies, SMEs and retail businesses.
  • As of 30 June 2016, 30.81% shares are owned by the promoters and the promoter group.
  • CEO: Amitabh Chaudhry
  • Headquarters: Mumbai

RBI reported Digital payments grew 30.19% during the financial year ended March 2021

  • Digital payments have recorded a growth of 30.19 per cent during the year ended March 2021, reflecting adoption and deepening of cashless transactions in the country, RBI data showed.
  • As per the newly constituted Digital Payments Index (RBI-DPI), the index rose to 270.59 at the end of March 2021, up from 207.84 a year ago.
  • “The RBI-DPI index has demonstrated significant growth in the index representing the rapid adoption and deepening of digital payments across the country in recent years”.
  • The Reserve Bank had earlier announced construction of a composite Reserve Bank of India – Digital Payments Index (RBI-DPI) with March 2018 as base to capture the extent of digitization of payments across the country.

Paytm Payments Bank reaches 1 crore FASTags mark

  • Paytm Payments Bank informed it has become the first bank in the country to achieve the milestone of issuing 1 crore FASTags.
  • According to NPCI, over 3.47 crore FASTags were issued by all banks together till the end of June 2021.
  • Paytm Payments Bank (PPBL) now has close to 28 per cent share as FASTag issuer bank.
  • “In the last 6 months alone, PPBL has equipped over 40 lakh commercial & private vehicles with FASTags”.
  • Besides this, Paytm Payments Bank is also India’s largest acquirer of toll plazas for the National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) program offering an interoperable nationwide toll payment solution.

About Paytm:

  • Paytm(a partial abbreviation for “pay through mobile”) is an Indian digital payment system and financial technology company, based in Noida.
  • Paytm is currently available in 11 Indian languagesand offers online use-cases like mobile recharges, utility bill payments, travel, movies, and events bookings as well as in-store payments at grocery stores, fruits and vegetable shops, restaurants, parking, tolls, pharmacies and educational institutions with the Paytm QR code.
  • As of January 2018, Paytm is valued at $10 billion.
  • CEO: Vijay Shekhar Sharma

Finance Ministry invites entries for new DFI’s Name, Logo

  • The finance ministry invited entries from citizens for name, tagline and logo for the new Development Financial Institution (DFI)
  • Cash prizes of up to Rs 5 lakh in each category.
  • The setting up of a DFI was announced by the finance minister in Budget 2021-22.
  • In March, Parliament passed the National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development (NaBFID) Bill.
  • Earlier, the ministry had carried out a similar exercise for choosing the name for the flagship financial inclusion programme of the government ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna’  in 2014.

About DFI:

  • Infrastructure is essential to building a new India.
  • So building new Projects, expanding and revitalizing existing infra is a much needed one.
  • So to fulfil this National Infrastructure Pipeline of Rs 111 lakh crore was setup around 7000 projects were identified.
  • However, the execution and completion of these projects will require timely finance and the requirement of funds is large.
  • In this case DFI will provide help through a mandate by the government.
  • Its operations will prioritize risk mitigation, product innovation, accessing green and ethical funds and helping to develop a vibrant bond market.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: AWARDS AND HONOURS

Sunjeev Sahota among 13 contenders for prestigious fiction’s Booker Prize

  • Indian-origin British author Sunjeev Sahota is among the 13 authors long listed for the prestigious 2021 Booker Prizefor fiction for his novel ‘China Room’, alongside Nobel laureate Kazuo Ishiguro and Pulitzer Prize winner Richard Powers.
  • The 2021 long list or “The Booker Dozen” of 13 novels was unveiled after judges evaluated 158 novels published in the UK or Ireland between October 1, 2020 and September 30, 2021.
  • Sahota, 40, who was 2015Booker Prize nominee for The Year of the Runaways, is on the long list for the 50,000-pound (USD 69,000) prize for his novel “China Room”, inspired in part by the author’s own family history.
  • Other Booker contenders on this year’s list include A Passage North, Anuk Arudpragasam; Second Place, Rachel Cusk, The Promise, Damon Galgut; The Sweetness of Water, Nathan Harris, An Island, Karen Jennings; A Town Called Solace, Mary Lawson; No One is Talking About This, Patricia Lockwood; The Fortune Men, Nadifa Mohamed; Great Circle, Maggie Shipstead and Light Perpetual, Francis Spufford.
  • The 13 books on this year’s long list were chosen by the judging panel: historian Maya Jasanoff (chair); writer and editor Horatia Harrod; actor Natascha McElhone; twice Booker-shortlisted novelist and professor Chigozie Obioma; and writer and former Archbishop Rowan Williams.

Maharashtra Bhushan Selection Committee names Asha Bhosle for prestigious award

  • The Maharashtra Bhushan Selection Committee chaired by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray unanimously selected legendary playback singer Asha Bhosle for the prestigious award.
  • Maharashtra cultural affairs minister Amit Deshmukh stated the Maharashtra Bhushan Puraskar will be given to legendary playback singer Asha Bhosle for the year 2021.
  • The minister visited the residence of the veteran singer and congratulated her by giving a bouquet.

About Maharashtra Bhushan Puraskar:

  • The Maharashtra Bhushan is a highest civilian award presented annually by the government of Maharashtra state in India.
  • When the Shivsena- BJP alliance came to power in 1995, it proposed to institute this award.
  • The Maharashtra Bhushan was first awarded in 1996.

Vaidehi Dongre from Michigan crowned as Miss India USA

  • Vaidehi Dongre, a 25-year-old girl from Michigan, has been crowned Miss India USA 2021 at the beauty pageant held over the weekend.
  • Vaidehi stated that she is “humbled and honoured” and described the journey as a “whirlwind”.
  • “Humbled and honoured to represent Indian immigrants living in the US as the new Miss India USA.
  • This journey has been a whirlwind but at the root of it I have always strived to be a role model for young girls, celebrate my rich South Asian heritage and leave a lasting positive impact on my community.
  • #MissIndiaUSA2021 Next up, Miss India Worldwide”.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: MOUs AND AGREEMENTS

BIAL signs a deal with IBM

  • To create a new ‘Airport in a Box’ platform that supports end-to-end travel experience for passengers at the Kempegowda International Airport, IBM has entered into a 10-year partnership with IBM and Kyndryl.
  • The partnership is designed to help the Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) improve its productivity, automate its information technology services, increase operational flexibility to handle future growth in passenger traffic and reduce costs.
  • The airport operator chose IBM Global Business Services, IBM hybrid cloud capabilities and Kyndryl, the new, independent company that will be created following the separation of IBM’s Managed Infrastructure Services business, to design and implement next generation architecture with a dynamic delivery model.

About IBM:

  • International Business Machines Corporation is an American multinational technology company headquartered in Armonk, New York, with operations in over 170 countries.
  • CEO: Arvind Krishna
  • Founder: Charles Ranlett Flint

CURRENT AFFAIRS : DEFENCE NEWS

Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) – Key Facts

  • The Department of Defence Production which comes under the Ministry of Defence has given its approval for a central sector scheme named ‘Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX)’ and gave a budgetary support  of Rs. 498.80 crore for the next 5 years starting from 2021-22 to the year 2025-26.

About iDEX:

  • The iDEX initiative was launched by the Prime Minister in April 2018.
  • It aims to achieve self – reliance and foster innovation and technology development in Defence and Aerospace by engaging Industries including Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), start-ups, individual innovators, R&D institutes and academia.
  • iDEX is funded and managed by the DIO (Defence Innovation Organisation), and functions as the executive arm of DIO.
  • DIO is a ‘not for profit’ company registered under Section 8 of the Companies Act 2013.
  • Its two founding members are Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) & Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) – Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs). HAL and BEL are navratna companies.
  • It will provide the engaging industries with funding and other support to carry out Research & Development.
  • Self-reliance in manufacturing of defence equipment is a crucial factor for maintaining India’s strategic autonomy.
  • India’s arms imports fell 33% between 2011-15 and 2016-20, said a report released by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).
  • iDEX has partnered with leading incubators in the country to provide hand holding, technical support and guidance to the winners of iDEX challenges.

CURRENT AFFAIRS : ENVIRONMENT

India’s 14 Tiger Reserves get Global CA/TS recognition for good Tiger Conservation

  • The 14 Tiger Reserves in India which received the accreditation of the Global Conservation Assured|Tiger Standards (CA|TS).
  • Tiger Conservation a Symbol of Conservation of Forests.
  • During all India tiger estimation 2018, leopard population was also estimated within the forested habitats in tiger occupied states of the country.
  • The overall leopard population in the tiger range landscape of India in 2018 was estimated at 12,852 (SE range 12,172 – 13,535).
  • This is a significant increase from the 2014 figure that was 7,910 (SE 6,566-9,181) in forested habitats of 18 tiger bearing states of the country.
  • The 14 tiger reserves which have been accredited are Manas, Kaziranga and Orange in Assam, Satpura, Kanha and Panna in Madhya Pradesh, Pench in Maharashtra, Valmiki Tiger Reserve in Bihar, Dudhwa in Uttar Pradesh,Sunderbans in West Bengal, Parambikulam in Kerala, Bandipur Tiger Reserve of Karnataka and Mudumalai and Anamalai Tiger Reserve in Tamil Nadu.

About CA/TS:

  • Conservation Assured | Tiger Standards (CA|TS) has been agreed upon as an accreditation tool by the global coalition of Tiger Range Countries (TRCs) and has been developed by tiger and protected area experts.
  • Officially launched in 2013, it sets minimum standards for effective management of target species and encourages assessment of these standards in relevant conservation areas.
  • CA|TS is a set of criteria which allows tiger sites to check if their management will lead to successful tiger conservation.

India can save Rs 89.4 billion a year by shutting old coal plants: Study

  • According to the Study India can potentially save Rs 8,940 crore ($1.2 billion) a year by shutting down some old coal-burning power plants and allowing newer ones to run for longer hours.
  • The study was conducted by New Delhi-based Council on Energy, Environment and Water

About the Study :

  • According to that report, the country should accelerate decommissioning 30 gigawatts of inefficient coal-fired capacity and set aside another 20 gigawatts of plants as reserve.
  • CEEW examined 194 gigawatts of coal power plants over a 30-month period ending February 2020.
  • It avoids 42 million tons of coal being burnt every year, a key source of the financial savings besides the positive impact on emissions and environment.

Benefits :

  • Help reduce greenhouse-gas emissions,
  • Clean up the country’s air
  • Reduce soil and water pollution.
  • Cost savings
  • Improve capacity use of the thermal fleet

Note :

Currently, India has a 203-gigawatt coal power fleet, which accounts for 53% of its installed generation capacity and about 70% of its electricity output.

About CEEW :

  • Leader: Arunabha Ghosh
  • Headquarters: New Delhi
  • Founded: 2010
  • Chairman of the board of directors: Jamshyd Godrej

CURRENT AFFAIRS : SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Indian scientists discovered bipyrazole organic crystals

  • Researchers from the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Kolkata collaborated with the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur, to develop piezoelectric molecular crystals called bipyrazole organic crystals.
  • This research, supported by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) through its Swarnajayanti Fellowship to CM Reddy and Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) grants.
  • The study was published in the journal Science.

About piezoelectric molecular crystals :

  • Piezoelectric crystals are a class of materials that generate electricity when it undergoes a mechanical impact.
  • That repair themselves from mechanical damages without need for any external intervention.

About bipyrazole organic crystals :

  • The piezoelectric molecules developed by the scientists called bipyrazole organic crystals recombine following mechanical fracture without any external intervention, autonomously self-healing in milliseconds with crystallographic precision.
  • Due to this unique property, the broken pieces of the component acquire electrical charges at the crack junction and the damaged parts attract each other for precise autonomous repair.

Applications :

  • High-end micro-chips
  • High precision mechanical sensors
  • Actuators
  • Micro-robotics

About Department of Science and Technology (DST) :

  • Founded: May 1971
  • Minister responsible : Jitendra Singh
  • Headquarters: New Delhi
  • Central Government of India executive: Ashutosh Sharma

ISRO to Launch a Satellite for Natural Disaster Monitoring Satellite this Year

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will launch a Geo-imaging Earth Observation Satellite (EOS-03) in the coming months as the agency reassesses work following the Covid-19 induced lockdown.
  • The EOS-03 satellite will enable near-real-time monitoring of natural disasters like floods and cyclones that have become common in the Indian subcontinent as it goes through major environmental and weather changes.
  • In addition to natural disasters, EOS-03 will also enable monitoring of water bodies, crops, vegetation conditions, and forest cover changes.
  • The Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) developmental flight is scheduled in the fourth quarter of 2021 and it will be launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre located in Sriharikota.

CURRENT AFFAIRS : SPORTS NEWS

Weightlifter Polina Guryeva wins first-ever Olympics medal for Turkmenistan

  • Weightlifter Polina Guryeva won a silver medal for the Central Asian nation in the Tokyo Olympics.
  • Guryeva lifted a total 217 kilograms in the 59-kilogram category, edging Mikiko Andoh of Japan for second
  • Turkmenistan has finally won its first Olympic medal since independence from the Soviet Union.
  • Kuo Hsing-Chun of Taiwan won gold by lifting 236kg.

About Turkmenistan :

  • Capital: Ashgabat
  • Currency: Turkmenistani manat
  • President: Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow

Daily CA On July 30 :

  • United Nations observes 30 July every year as World Day Against Trafficking in Persons & the 2021 theme for World Day against Trafficking in Persons is Victims “Voices Lead the Way”.
  • The Union Cabinet has cleared the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation (DICGC) Bill, 2021, which will allow depositors to withdraw up to Rs 5 lakh in 90 days.
  • The Lok Sabha passed the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2021 which was introduced in the Lower House on July 26.
  • Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt stated that, The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will get two per cent royalty from Dr Reddy’s Laboratory (DRL) on the sale of anti-Covid drug 2-DG.
  • Union Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot e-launched a ‘National Portal for Transgender Persons’ and e-inaugurated a ‘Garima Greh: A Shelter Home for Transgender Persons’ in Vadodara, Gujarat.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a new framework SAFAL (structured assessment for analyzing learning levels) to assess students of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).
  • Government is taking various steps to undertake the large-scale production of COVID BEEP stated by the Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh, It is a India’s first indigenous, cost effective, wireless physiological parameters monitoring system for COVID-19 patients, developed by ESIC Medical College Hyderabad in collaboration with IIT Hyderabad and Department Of Atomic Energy.
  • The Rajya Sabha on July 28, 2021, passed the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill 2021, thereby amending the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children), Act, 2015.
  • Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri noted that the “king of chillies” from Nagaland, also known as the Bhoot Jolokia (ghost pepper), has been exported to the United Kingdom via Guwahati by air for the first time.
  • On July 27, 2021, A 19-year-old Pakistani Shehroze Kashif became the youngest person to reach the summit of K2 with Supplemental oxygen.
  • US will provide $25 million to support Covid-19 India’s vaccination programme
  • The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) Global Education Summit will take place on July 28 and 29, 2021 in London.
  • Karnataka became the first state in India to reserve jobs in public employment in favour of transgender persons.
  • Rajasthan government’s Industries Department and the apex industrial development body, the Rajasthan Industrial Development and Investment Corporation (RIICO), have launched a campaign “Mission Niryatak Bano” to help local traders in expanding their businesses to foreign countries.
  • The Odisha government has implemented the one nation one ration card scheme, & the scheme allows the beneficiaries to lift his or her quota of food grains from any of the fair price shops of his or her choice, both within and outside the state.
  • On the occasion of World Hepatitis Day 2021, Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh launched Model Hepatitis B Treatment Centres at two hospitals in Manipur.
  • The Kerala Police has launched a new initiative called the “Pink Protection” project for the protection of women in public, private and digital spaces.
  • Three Indian businesses are among the winners of a United Nations-sponsored global competition for the “Best Small Businesses” that provide creative, varied, and impactful solutions for increasing access to healthy and sustainable food.
  • The country’s leading car maker Maruti Suzuki India stated it has partnered with Savitribai Phule Pune University, Maharashtra, to train the youth in automobile retail.
  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has imposed a monetary penalty of Rs 5 crore on Axis Bank for contravention of certain provisions of directions issued by the RBI, encompassing those on cyber security framework.
  • Digital payments have recorded a growth of 30.19 per cent during the year ended March 2021, reflecting adoption and deepening of cashless transactions in the country, RBI data showed.
  • Paytm Payments Bank informed it has become the first bank in the country to achieve the milestone of issuing 1 crore FASTags.
  • The finance ministry invited entries from citizens for name, tagline and logo for the new Development Financial Institution (DFI)
  • Indian-origin British author Sunjeev Sahota is among the 13 authors long listed for the prestigious 2021 Booker Prize for fiction for his novel ‘China Room’, alongside Nobel laureate Kazuo Ishiguro and Pulitzer Prize winner Richard Powers.
  • The Maharashtra Bhushan Selection Committee chaired by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray unanimously selected legendary playback singer Asha Bhosle for the prestigious award.
  • Vaidehi Dongre, a 25-year-old girl from Michigan, has been crowned Miss India USA 2021 at the beauty pageant held over the weekend.
  • Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL), has signed a ten-year partnership with the company IBM to set up the ‘Airport in a Box’ platform.
  • The Department of Defence Production which comes under the Ministry of Defence has given its approval for a central sector scheme named ‘Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX)’ and gave a budgetary support  of Rs. 498.80 crore for the next 5 years starting from 2021-22 to the year 2025-26.
  • The 14 Tiger Reserves in India which received the accreditation of the Global Conservation Assured|Tiger Standards (CA|TS).
  • Researchers from the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Kolkata collaborated with the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur, to develop piezoelectric molecular crystals called bipyrazole organic crystals.
  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will launch a Geo-imaging Earth Observation Satellite (EOS-03) in the coming months as the agency reassesses work following the Covid-19 induced lockdown.
  • According to the Study India can potentially save Rs 8,940 crore ($1.2 billion) a year by shutting down some old coal-burning power plants and allowing newer ones to run for longer hours & the study was conducted by New Delhi-based Council on Energy, Environment and Water.
  • Weightlifter Polina Guryeva won a silver medal for lifting a total 217 kilograms in the 59-kilogram category, the Central Asian nation in the Tokyo Olympics.

Daily CA On July 29 :

  • Global Tiger Day, often called International Tiger Day, is an annual celebration to raise awareness for tiger conservation, held annually on 29 July & the theme is “Their survival is in our hands”.
  • Union Minister of State for Earth Sciences, Jitendra Singh launched the MoES-ESSDP (Earth System Science Data Portal) during the 15th foundation day.
  • In a major boost to exports of Geographical Indications (GI) products from the north-eastern region, a consignment of ‘Raja Mircha’ also referred as king chilli from Nagaland was exported to London via Guwahati by air for the first time.
  • The Government has announced its plans to set up a National Farmers Database.
  • The Geological Survey of India (GSI), part of the Ministry of Mines, has taken up seven projects for lithium exploration across different states in India.
  • The Election Commission of India held a review meeting on advance planning for forthcoming elections with the Chief Electoral Officers of the five states namely Goa, Manipur, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh, at Nirvachan Sadan.
  • The National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) launched a capacity-building initiative on ‘making water sensitive cities in Ganga basin’, aimed at improving river health and flows.
  • Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) conducted by National Statistical Office (NSO) stated that Unemployment rate for women fell to 4.2 per cent in 2019-20 from 5.1 per cent in 2018-19.
  • The Marine Aids to Navigation Bill 2021 has been passed by the Parliament, which aims to replace the over 90-year-old Lighthouse Act of 1927 & the bill was moved in Rajya Sabha by Union Minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways Sarbananda Sonowal on 19 July 2021 and it was passed on 27 July 2021.
  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singhattended a conclave of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Dushanbe that extensively deliberated on regional security challenges as well as the situation in Afghanistan.
  • Globally renowned for its natural beauty, Rio de Janeiro received a new international distinction as UNESCO added landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx’s former home to its list of World Heritage sites.
  • Lebanon’s president is expected to appoint a billionaire businessman and former prime minister as the next premier-designate
  • Indore has become the only city to be selected from India for the International Clean Air Catalyst Programme.
  • In order to promote AYUSH in Madhya Pradesh and to link it with employment, the government CM Shivraj launched a ‘Devaranya’ scheme.
  • Odisha’s Puri has become the first city in the state to have a drink-from-tap facility & Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the ‘Sujal’ or drink-from-tap mission.
  • Department of MSME, Government of Uttar Pradesh, signed an MoU with government advisory firm Sapio Analytics, to provide licenses of automation software Accloud, worth Rs. 72 crores, to 20,000 MSMEs of the state.
  • Economic prospects have diverged further across countries since the April 2021 World Economic Outlook (WEO) forecast & the global economy is projected to grow 0 percent in 2021 and 4.9 percent in 2022.
  • Reserve Bank of India (RBI) informed that the total amount of unclaimed deposits of Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs) was Rs. 24,356 crore, as on 31.12.2020.
  • India’s largest private lender HDFC Bank launched an overdraft facility for small retailers in partnership with the government’s e-governance services delivery arm CSC SPV that enables government schemes and services through common service centres (CSCs).
  • With an aim to further improve ease of doing business, Centre launches the “Secured Logistics Document Exchange” along with a Calculator for GreenHouse Gas Emissions
  • 52,391 entities are recognized as start-ups by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), more than 5.7 lakh jobs have been reported by more than 50,000 start-ups.
  • Uber has announced that it has named Ameya Velankar as head of marketing for India, South Asia.
  • Foreign Minister of Maldives Abdulla Shahid won the Presidency of the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on 7 June 2021.
  • SDG Choupal, a collective community member of UN habitat, WHO, NITI Ayog and MSME ministry honored Shri Sanjay Rai Sherpuria by appointing him the National Brand Ambassador for his commendable contributions.
  • The Cabinet approved a multilateral MoU signed between the International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA), International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), and International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS).
  • National Fertilisers Limited (NFL) and Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilisers Ltd (RCF) signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO) for ‘transfer of technology’ of a revolutionary and game changer fertiliser Nano Urea Liquid.
  • The Indian Air Force formally inducted Rafale aircraft into 101 Squadron at Air Force Station Hasimara in Eastern Air Command (EAC)
  • Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Shri Narendra Singh Tomar virtually delivered the Ministerial Statement in the Pre-Summit of United Nations Food System Summit 2021 
  • The 5th National Geo-research Scholars Meet (NGRSM), based on the theme “Earth Sciences for Sustainable development”, was organized through a webinar recently at the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG), Dehradun, an autonomous institute of the DST.
  • The Government has developed an indigenous climate model that will predict the impact of climate change on monsoon in the country, informed Jitendra Singh, the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences.
  • Department of Science and Technology stated, A scientist with the Mohali-based National Agri-Food Biotechnology Institute has developed an ultra-sensitive and easy-to-use sensor for detecting arsenic contamination in water and food within 15 minutes.
  • The Ministry of Science & Technology stated A group of astronomers, including from India, has detected a very short, powerful burst of high-energy radiation that lasted for about a second and had been racing towards the earth for nearly half the present age of the universe.
  • Delhi’s Vantika Agarwal stunned a strong field to win the National women online chess title.
  • On July 25, 2021, 16-year-old Indian Wrestler Priya Malik clinched gold at the 2021 World Cadet Wrestling Championships in Budapest, Hungary & she defeated Kseniya Patapovich 5-0 in the summit clash of women’s 73kg weight category to win the yellow medal.
  • Former England and Derbyshire bowler Mike Hendrick has passed away at the age of 72.
  • On July 28, 2021, Legendary badminton player Nandu Natekar, Passed  away.
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