Daily Current Affairs 17 June 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
IIT Bombay Hosts Conference Of BRICS Network Universities 2021
The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay hosted a three-day virtual conference of BRICS Network Universities on electric mobility.
- The conference is part of the engagements that India is hosting under the education stream during its 13th BRICS Summit this year.IIT-Bombay is the lead institution of India for the BRICS Network University.
- BRICS Network University is a union of higher education institutions of the five BRICS member countries. It was formed with the objective of enhancing educational cooperation, especially in the field of research and innovation.
Cabinet Approves Deep Ocean Mission Of Ministry Of Earth Sciences
The Union Cabinet approved ‘Deep Ocean Mission to study biodiversity, impact of climate change, and establish an offshore marine station to explore source of thermal energy.
- The cost of the Mission has been estimated at Rs4,077 crore over a five-year period and will be implemented in phases. The estimated cost for the first phase for three years (2021-2024) is estimated at Rs2,823.4 crore.
- The Ministry of Earth Sciences will be the nodal ministry implementing this multi-institutional ambitious mission.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan Addresses The Global Yoga Conference 2021
Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare addressed the inaugural ceremony of Global Yoga Conference 2021 in the presence of Shri Shripad Yesso Nayak, Minister of State for Defence.
- The event was organised by ‘Mokshayatan Yog Sansthan’ along with the Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India &Indian Council for Cultural Relations to mark the occasion of the 7th International Day of Yoga which falls on 21st June 2021.
- Dr Harsh Vardhan highlighted how Yoga has helped people during COVID restrictions on public activities. The benefits of Yoga in immunity building and management of stress are well documented with evidence.
Aviation, shipping ministries sign MoU for development of seaplane services
Ports, shipping and waterways ministry (MoPSW) and the civil aviation ministry have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for developing seaplane services in the country.
- According to the MoU, a coordination committee with officials from civil aviation ministry, MoPSW, and tourism ministry will be set up for timely completion of operationalisation of seaplane services across the country.
- This will give a big fillip to the provision of a new kind of tourism service in India.
Arjun Munda launches tribal livelihoods ‘Sankalp Se Siddhi- Mission Van Dhan’
Union Minister for Tribal Affairs Arjun Munda launched Sankalp Se Siddhi – Mission Van Dhan to promote local products manufactured by tribal artisans to ensure the sustainable livelihood of the tribal population across the country.
- The Union Minister launched TRIFED’s new office premises at NSIC Complex at Okhla Industrial Area, which is built in around 30,000 sqft area and has state-of-the-art infrastructure.
- Besides, the minister also launched other initiatives such as Van Dhan software application, which is designed to receive and process the Van Dhan proposals online, GIS integration, monitor project implementation activities, etc. A digital connect programme, under which a two-way communication process is proposed to be established, was also launched by the minister.
- Munda also inaugurated seven more Tribes India outlets – two in Jagdalpur, three in Ranchi, one each at Jamshedpur and Sarnath.
PM Modi Virtually Addresses 5th Edition Of VivaTech In Paris
Prime Minister Narendra Modi delevered the keynote address at the fifth edition of ‘VivaTech’ via video conferencing’. During his address, PM Modi invited the world to invest in India based on the five pillars: Talent, Market, Capital, Eco-system and, Culture of openness.
- This event is one of the largest digital and startup events in Europe, and it is held in Paris every year since 2016. It is jointly organised by Publicis Groupe – a prominent advertising and marketing conglomerate and Les Echos – a leading French media group.
- The event brings together stakeholders in technology innovation and the startup ecosystem.It includes exhibitions, awards, panel discussions and startup contests.
India, China, Pakistan appear to be expanding their nuclear arsenals: SIPRI study
China, Pakistan and India have 350, 165 and 156 nuclear warheads respectively as of January this year and the three countries appear to be expanding their nuclear arsenals, a study by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) has said.
- It also said as per its assessment, Russia and the US together possess over 90 percent of the estimated 13,080 global nuclear weapons.
- There are nine countries in the world that have nuclear weapons: the US, Russia, the UK, France, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea.China, France, Russia, the UK and the US have produced both HEU and plutonium for use in their nuclear weapons, the study mentioned.
- It also said Saudi Arabia, India, Egypt, Australia and China were the five largest importers of major arms in the world between 2016 and 2020.
India’s investment in research unsatisfactory: UNESCO report
While India has made ‘solid progress’ towards the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) targets concerning industry, infrastructure and innovation, the country’s investment in research remains unsatisfactory, the UNESCO Science Report has observed.
- The gross domestic expenditure on research (GERD) has been stagnant at 0.7% of the GDP for years, although, in absolute terms, research expenditure has increased, the chapter on India authored by Sunil Mani, director, Centre for Development Studies (CDS), Thiruvananthapuram, noted.
- India has one of the lowest GERD/GDP ratios among the BRICS nations, according to the report which is published every five years.
Union Minister for Railways, Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal attend the UN Trade Forum 2021
Union Minister Piyush Goyal attended UN Trade Forum 2021 and put forward India’s renewed thrust to achieve climate goals in the post-COVID-19 world.
- At the forum, Goyal stated that India’s per capita CO2 emission is the lowest among the big economies of the world, and the country’s ambitious target of 450 Gigawatts by 2030 is the representation of commitment towards the United Nations 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development and Sustainable Development Goals.
- Goyal called for segregating trade policy and green goals and reiterated India’s long-standing position that differentiates between environment and sustainability goals to trade.
NATO Leaders Declare China A Global Security Challenge
NATO leaders declared that China poses a constant security challenge and is working to undermine global order.
- This is a message in sync with US President Joe Biden’s efforts to get allies to speak out with a more unified voice against China’s trade, military and human rights practices.
- The NATO leaders said that China’s goals and ‘assertive behaviour present systemic challenges to the rules-based international order and to areas relevant to alliance security.
BANKING & FINANCE
LIC Launches RuPay Prepaid Gift Card, Shagun
LIC Cards Services Limited (LIC-CSL) joined hands with IDBI Bank to launch launched contactless prepaid gift card ‘Shagun’ on RuPay platfor.
- The Shagun card will initially be available to LIC and its subsidiaries and associates for official use and will be used to facilitate awards and special rewards during official conferences and functions
- The Shagun Gift Card offers flexible loading amounts, ranging from ₹500 to ₹10,000 and validity of 3 years. Benefitting from the the wide acceptability of RuPay, the Shagun gift card can be used at millions of merchant outlets and e-commerce websites in India.
India extends $108.28 million soft loan to Eswatini
Government has extended a soft loan of USD 108.28 million to Eswatini (Swaziland) for construction of their new Parliament building, Exim Bank said.
- With the signing of this line of credit agreement, Exim Bank has now in place 272 Lines of Credit (LoC), covering 62 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the CIS, with credit commitments of around USD 26.84 billion, available for financing exports from India.
ICICI Bank launches ‘ICICI STACK for Corporates’
ICICI Bank announced the launch of ‘ICICI STACK for Corporates’, a comprehensive set of digital banking solutions for corporates and their entire ecosystem including promoters, group companies, employees, dealers, vendors and all other stakeholders.
- With this launch, ICICI Bank aims to be the preferred banking partner for companies and their entire ecosystem.
- A first-of-its-kind initiative, the ‘ICICI STACK for Corporates’ provides customised digital banking services to companies in over 15 leading industries– such as financial services, IT/ITES, pharmaceuticals, steel to name a few– and their entire ecosystem.
RBI Allows Prepaid Mobile Recharges Through Bharat Bill Payment System
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) allowed prepaid mobile recharge through the Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) by adding ‘mobile prepaid recharges as a biller category.
- Mobile recharge through BBPS will be allowed from or before August 31, 2021.
- In May, 213.59 million bill payment transactions were carried out through the BBPS channel. NPCI is working to spin off BBPS into a separate subsidiary and is on the lookout for a chief executive to head it.
Federal Bank Enlists Infosys For Oracle CX Implementation
Federal Bank, to improve its marketing, sales and offer a better customer experience, has partnered with Infosys for Oracle CX adoption, a cloud-based tool to manage the relationship with customers.
- With the integration of this tool, Federal Bank wants to build an efficient way of recalling customer’s information, improve their productivity and customer satisfaction all in one place.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Facebook Launches ‘Report It, Don’t Share It!’ Initiative
Facebook has kicked off a new initiative to keep children safe on the internet. Given that more and more kids are using the internet for both online classes and entertainment, protecting them is the first and the most important thing.
- The ‘Report it, don’t share it’ campaign is being helmed by the social media giant in collaboration with Aarambh India Initiative, Cyber Peace Foundation, and Arpan.
- The main idea behind the initiative, as the name suggests, is to encourage people to report abusive or harmful content, and not share it.
Microsoft Names CEO Satya Nadella As Chairman
Microsoft Corp named Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella as its new Chairman, in place of John Thompson.
- Nadella, who took over as CEO in 2014 from Steve Ballmer, has been instrumental in scaling up its business including billion-dollar acquisitions like LinkedIn, Nuance Communications and ZeniMax.
Centre appoints Finance Ministry official Anand Mohan Bajaj to SEBI Board
The Centre has appointed Anand Mohan Bajaj, Additional Secretary in the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA) as Member of the Board of Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), which is the capital markets as well as commodity derivatives market regulator.
- In the SEBI Board, he is replacing Tarun Bajaj, who is now the Revenue Secretary.
- The other Central Government appointed official in the SEBI Board is K V R Murty, Joint Secretary in Ministry of Company Affairs.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Shenzhou-12: China launches first crew to new space station
China launched three astronauts as its first crew to its new Tiangong space station, the country’s first manned spaceflight in nearly five years. The high-stakes mission, named Shenzhou 12, was launched on the back of the Long March 2F rocket, at Jiuquan in the northwestern Gansu province.
- The mission is being led by 56-year-old Nie Haisheng, accompanied by fellow spacefarers Liu Boming and Tang Hongbo who are aboard the spacecraft Shenzhou-12.
- The astronauts will be stationed in the core module and remain in orbit for three months.
World’s First Wooden Satellite Aims to Reach Space by End of 2021
Finnish company Arctic Astronautics is sending the world’s first wooden satellite into space by the end of this year.
- The satellite, WISA Woodsat, is a cube-shaped nanosatellite made up of birch plywood and has sensors developed by the European Space Agency. The satellite will be launched from New Zealand on a rocket Electron developed by Rocket Lab, an American aerospace manufacturer
- The cube satellite is sized 10cm each in length, height and width. The move is aimed to test if wood as a material can survive the vacuum, cold, heat and radiation in space.
Government launches trusted telecom portal
The Centre launched the Trusted Telecom Portal trustedtelecom.gov.in, six months after the Cabinet approved the National Security Directive on Telecommunication Sector for the government to declare a list of trusted sources and products for installation in the country’s telecom networks.
- The new portal under the Cyber wing of the National Security Council Secretariat will mandate telecom service providers to use equipment through trusted or authentic sources only.
ASEAN Dengue Day
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) celebrates the ASEAN Dengue Day every 15th of June since its declaration in 2011.
- 2021 ASEAN Dengue Day (ADD) theme is ” ASEAN Unite Against Dengue Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic”.
World Day To Combat Desertification And Drought
Every year on June 17, World Day to Combat Desertification And Drought is observed.
- The day is celebrated to raise awareness of the presence of desertification and drought, highlighting methods of preventing desertification and recovering from drought.
- “Restoration. Land. Recovery. We build back better with healthy land” is the theme for 2021 Desertification and Drought Day.