Daily Current Affairs 25 June 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
Odisha partners with UN WFP to empower, support women through self-help groups
The Odisha government and United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) have joined hands to improve household food and nutritional security by strengthening livelihood initiatives and reaching out to thousands of state-supported Women’s Self-Help Groups (WSHGs).
- This is a significant partnership for achieving nutritional security in Odisha focused on empowerment, livelihood and incomes of women.
- The partnership, effective till December 2023, will also be focusing on improving the linkage of women’s groups with government procurement systems, increasing awareness on entitlements, building capacity of women’s groups, and developing monitoring tools and undertaking evaluations to improve functioning of the groups.
Raghuram Rajan Named In Tamil Nadu Economic Advisory Panel
The Government of Tamil Nadu has decided to set up a five-member ‘Economic Advisory Council to the Chief Minister’ with leading economic experts across the world as its members.
- The economic advisory council to Tamil Nadu’s CM will comprise of Nobel laureate Esther Duflo and the former Governor of Reserve Bank of India Raghuram Rajan, along with three other members.
- The other members in the council are former Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian, development economist Jean Drèze and former Union Finance Secretary S Narayan.
Odisha CM Launches ‘Ashirbad’ For Education And Health Of Covid Orphans
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced a new scheme ‘Ashirbad’ for education, health and maintenance of Covid orphans.
- Children who lost their parents or main earning person of the family on April 1, 2020 or thereafter to Covid-19 will be eligible to be covered under the scheme.
- The Chief Minister announced that Rs 2500 per month will be deposited in the bank accounts of family members who have taken responsibility of the children after death of their parents. The assistance will continue till 18 years of the child or till such a date if somebody adopts him.
- The children will get free treatment under the state government’s Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana. Besides, they will be also included as beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA).
- As per the provision of the scheme, the children can also continue in the schools in which they were studying before the death of their parents. However, the relative who has taken responsibility of a child resides somewhere else, arrangement of schooling will be made in that place.
Denmark signs framework agreement on International Solar Alliance with India
Denmark signed the framework agreement of the International Solar Alliance Framework Agreement (ISA FA) and Instrument of Ratification with India, informed Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.
- Meanwhile, Denmark becomes first country to ratify International Solar Alliance Framework Agreement (ISA FA) after amendments to it entered into force on January 8.
- Kingdom of Denmark becomes 1st country to ratify International Solar Alliance Framework Agreement (ISA FA) after amendments to it entered into force on 8 January this year, opening its Membership to all Member States of the United Nations.
BRICS nations agree on science and technology innovation cooperation
BRICS Nations have unanimously agreed on an innovation co-operation at the 11th BRICS S&T Steering Committee Meeting.Hosted by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), GoI, the meeting was led from the Indian side by Sanjeev Kumar Varshney, Advisor & Head International Cooperation. This meeting was hosted as a part of the series of sectoral events including Minister level meeting and BRICS Summit.
- The proposal put forward by India would be considered at the BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Entrepreneurship (STIEP) working group for elaborating the action plan.
- The concept note and Action Plan for BRICS Innovation Cooperation 2021-2024 was discussed during the meeting organized on June 22, 2021 to review the implementation of BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation(STI) Calendar of Activities.
Bhutan’s Tax Inspectors Without Borders (TIWB) programme launched in partnership with India
Tax Inspectors Without Borders (TIWB), a joint initiative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), launched its programme in Bhutan.
- India was chosen as the Partner Jurisdiction and has provided the Tax Expert for this programme.The focus of the programme will be in the area of International Taxation and Transfer Pricing.
- This programme is expected to be of about 24 months’ duration through which India in collaboration with the UNDP and the TIWB Secretariat aims to aid Bhutan in strengthening its tax administration by transferring technical know-how and skills to its tax auditors, and through sharing of best audit practices.
BANKING & FINANCE
Kotak Mahindra Bank Launches ‘Pay Your Contact’ Service
Kotak Mahindra Bank (KMBL) has announced the launch of ‘Pay Your Contact’ – an innovative feature on KMBL’s mobile banking app that uses the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) platform and allows customers to send money or make payments to any of their contacts across all payment apps simply by entering the beneficiary’s mobile number.
- With ‘Pay Your Contact’, KMBL customers no longer need to remember or obtain the bank account number or IFSC code or remember UPI IDs to send money or make payments.
- The ‘Pay Your Contact’ feature is interoperable across all payment apps and is available on both Android and iOS.
SBI General Insurance And IDFC First Bank Tie-Up For Bancassurance
SBI General Insurance, one of the leading general insurance companies in India, has signed a corporate agency agreement with IDFC FIRST Bank for distribution of non-life insurance solutions.
- Under this strategic agreement, SBI General Insurance will offer insurance products such as health, personal accident, home, motor and travel along with the commercial line of insurance products such as property, marine and engineering insurance to the bank’s customers.
Fintech incubator Afthonia Lab, YES BANK partner to help startups develop APIs and test ideas
Indian fintech incubator Afthonia Lab said it has partnered with YES BANK to helps its portfolio startups develop their APIs in a sandbox environment and test their solutions in real-time.
- The startups in Afthonia Lab’s cohort will also be able to access mentors at YES BANK, and in exchange, help the bank digitise its processes.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
S&P cuts India’s FY22 GDP forecast to 9.5% from earlier 11%
S&P Global Ratings cut India’s growth forecast for the current fiscal to 9.5%, from 11% earlier, and warned of risk to the outlook from further waves of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The agency lowered the growth outlook saying that a severe second COVID-19 outbreak in April and May led to lockdowns imposed by States and sharp contraction in economic activity.
IFFCO to set up Nano Urea Fertiliser Plant in Argentina, Brazil
World’s biggest fertilizer cooperative Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative (IFFCO) informed that it will set up a Nano Urea Liquid manufacturing plant in Argentina in partnership with the Cooperative Confederation of Argentina (Cooperar) and Instituto Nacional de Asociativismo y Economia Social (INAES).
- They will together analyze the feasibility of setting up a Nano Urea Fertiliser Manufacturing Plant in Argentina with mutual collaboration.
- They will also explore the possibility of cooperation in trade and investment in both the countries, in areas of mutual interest, including agrochemicals and agricultural inputs to achieve sustainable development.
WhatsApp, NSDC launch prog to boost job opportunities for youth
The National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and WhatsApp joined hands to launch the Digital Skill Champions Programme that aims to train India’s youth on digital skills, in order to make them employment ready.
- Through this programme, school and university students would be coached to imbibe digital and online skills that would culminate with WhatsApp and NSDC awarding ‘Digital Skill Champions’ certification.
- The course is based on a module-format, is comprehensive and intensive in imparting knowledge about important aspects of the online ecosystem, equipping students with technology-based learning on campuses across Tier III and IV towns and cities throughout the country.
ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
Adani Power to acquire 1,200 MW Essar Power’s Mahan project
Adani Power Limited is set to acquire the 1200 megawatt (MW) Essar Power’s Mahan Project situated at Singrauli district in Madhya Pradesh and is likely to spend around Rs 3000 crore for this project.
- The plant routes power through the Mahan-Sipat transmission line and is linked with a railway sliding situated 18 kilometers away for the purpose of coal supply and other raw materials.
India’s Official Olympic Theme Song ‘Lakshya Tera Samne Hai’ Released
Ahead of the Tokyo Games, the official Olympic theme song for the Indian contingent was launched. Mohit Chauhan has composed and sung the song titled “Lakshya Tera Samne Hai“.
- Tokyo Olympics will begin on July 23 and will run up to August 8 this year. The event was slated to be held last year, but it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nikol Pashinyan Elected As Armenia Prime Minister
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s party won a majority in the snap parliamentary elections with 53.9 percent of the vote, as per official results declared.
- The alliance led by Pashinyan’s rival, Robert Kocharyan, could only garner 21 percent of the vote, as per the results. However, Kocharyan contested the vote and alleged election fraud.
SEBI’s Ananta Barua gets 2-year extension of term
The Centre has extended the tenure of appointment of Ananta Barua as Whole-time Member (WTM) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for a period of two years beyond July 31.His tenure has been extended till July 31, 2023.
- The Government had, in March this year, begun the search for appointment of new WTMs on the SEBI Board as the three-year terms of two WTMs, SK Mohanty and Ananta Barua, were to end in June and July this year respectively. Both Mohanty and Barua were eligible for re-appointment.
- Now, both Mohanty and Barua have got two-year extensions to their tenures as WTMs.
NTPC Wins Recognition Of India’s Best Employers Among Nation-Builders 2021
For the first time, National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC) won recognition as India’s Best Employers among Nation-Builders 2021. It has been recognized as the ‘Great Place to Work’ for the 15th straight year by the Great Places to Work Institute.
- NTPC is the only Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) to consistently feature in India’s top 50 best workplaces. The PSU comes under the ministry of power.The Maharatna Community and Public Sector Unit (CPSU) has once again featured in India’s top 50 ‘Best Workplaces’.
- This year NTPC ranked 38th up from 47th position last year. It also won it’s first-ever recognition of India’s Best Employers among Nation-Builders 2021.
Cochin International Airport Won Honour In Airport Service Quality
The Cochin International Airport has won the Airport Council International (ACI) Director General’s Roll of Excellence honour in Airport Service Quality.
- The ACI, a global body of airport operators, established the Roll of Excellence recognition to airports which, in the opinion of the passengers ascertained through a survey, consistently delivered excellent services.
- Cochin International Airport has consistently delivered excellence in customer service by winning multiple awards over five years during the past 10 years and is one of the six airports worldwide that will receive the recognition this year.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
ISRO, NOAA-led multinational project endorsed by UN body
A multinational project, co-led by ISRO and NOAA(National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) from the US, that aims to improve the accuracy of coastal data based on satellite and land-based observations has been recently endorsed by a UN body for its use of innovative technology, and for fostering trust and collaboration among scientists.
- The project is called Committee on Earth Observation Satellites—Coastal Observations, Applications, Services, and Tools (CEOS COAST). Its pilot projects are uniquely capable of using Earth Observation technologies to meet several of the 17 UN-designated sustainable development goals for the Ocean Decade initiative.
- CEOS COAST was recognised for its use of innovative technology, for its focus on diversity and inclusivity, and for fostering trust and collaboration between scientists and lay users of ocean knowledge
Ex-Philippines President Benigno Aquino dies of renal failure at 61
Former Philippine President Benigno Aquino III died at the age of 61 due to health problems.
- Aquino, who served as president from 2010 to 2016, was the heir of a family that has been regarded as a bulwark against authoritarianism in the Philippines.
- His administration brought an unprecedented arbitration case challenging Beijing’s claim to historic and economic rights in the South China Sea.
BOOKS & AUTHORS
Harsh Vardhan Unveils ‘My Joys And Sorrows – As A Mother Of A Special Child’ Book
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has unveiled Krishna Saksena’s book “My Joys and Sorrows – as a Mother of a Special Child”.
- It is the epitome of the bravery and endurance of a mother, in the best tradition of Indian motherhood.
World Vitiligo Day
World Vitiligo Day 2021 is observed annually on June 25 to create awareness globally about this rare skin disease.
- The date, June 25 was chosen in a memorial to music artist Michael Jackson, who also suffered from this rare skin disease until his death, which occurred on June 25, 2009.
- In around 1-2 per cent of the population across the globe, people are suffering from this rare condition. Vitiligo occurs due to a lack of melanin, that is, loss of pigment creating pale white patches on the skin.
Day Of The Seafarer
Observed on June 25 every year, Day of the Seafarer recognises the invaluable contribution of seafarers to the worldwide commerce and economic system.
- The theme of this year is ‘Seafarers: at the core of shipping’s future’. The theme seeks to increase the visibility of seafarers by drawing attention to the invaluable role they play now and will continue to play in the future.