Daily Current Affairs 18th August, 2021

Daily Current Affairs 18 August 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.


Govt Rolls Out ‘Karkhandar’ Scheme To Revive Traditional Crafts Of J&K
In a significant development, the J & K Government issued orders for giving a fresh impetus to the training in handicraft sector in the UT by unveiling  the ‘KARKHANDAR’ scheme which is a unique concept as far the upliftment of artisans and weavers through training is concerned.The scheme will be implemented throughout the UT by Directorate of Handicrafts and Handloom Kashmir/ Jammu.

  • The scheme will not only boost those crafts which have good potential but also the languishing ones. Among the languishing crafts the crafts like Glazed tiles,  Silver ware and filligree  will be taken on for full revival in the first instance.
  • Under the scheme the meritorious trainees will be given RS 2000/month as honorarium and the trainer will get Rs 2000/month  for each trainee and plus Rs 25000/- for logistics, raw materials etc.
  • The aim of the this scheme is to transfer the skill set of the master craftsmen to the younger generation as this was a general observation that the skill transfer from the master craftsmen to the younger generation was happening at a snail’s pace.

Odisha first state in the country to launch digital ‘Smart Health Cards’ for free treatment
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced to provide Smart Health Cards to 3.5 crore people in the state under Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana on the occasion of 75th Independence Day.

  • The Chief Minister said the initiative will transform health service delivery system and create history in the health sector of the country. He said the move will usher in a new era in state’s health sector.

The main features of this new provision are:

  • Odisha is the first state in the country to provide such Smart Health Cards. 3.5 crore people of 96 lakh families will get this Smart Health Card.This card will be given to all the beneficiaries phase wise.
  • Beneficiaries of National and State Food Security Schemes, Annapurna and Antodaya beneficiaries will get this card.
  • Each family can avail treatment cost up to Rs 5 lakh per annum. Women members can avail this benefit up to Rs 10 lakh every year.The beneficiaries can avail health services in more than 200 hospital chains of the country including Odisha.

Health Minister announces over 1300 crore rupees package for infrastructure development in health sector of North Eastern states
Union Health & Family Welfare Minister Mansukh Mandaviya has announced a package of more than 1300 crore rupees for the infrastructure development in health sector of North Eastern states.

  • Central Government is providing this aid for the health infrastructure development at district levels to combat this pandemic as per population ratio.
  • He emphasized on aggressive vaccination in the Northeastern states and assured that there will not be any vaccine shortage.

Total number of houses sanctioned under PMAY-U reaches 1.13 crore
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has approved proposals for the construction of 16 thousand 488 houses at the 55th meeting of the Central Sanctioning and Monitoring Committee under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Urban (PMAY-U).

  • The houses are proposed to be constructed under Beneficiary-Led Construction (BLC) and Affordable Housing in Partnership (AHP) verticals of PMAY-U. With this, the total number of sanctioned houses under PMAY-U has now gone up to over 113 lakh. Of them, 85.65 lakh houses have been grounded for construction and more than 51 lakh have been completed and delivered to the beneficiaries.
  • The approval for proposals under Model-2 of Affordable Rental Housing Complexes was also reviewed by the Secretary with five states, namely Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh, Assam, Uttar Pradesh, and Gujarat. A total of 59 thousand 350 units, including single bedroom and double bedroom units and dormitory beds, have been approved for urban migrants and poor, involving a Technology Innovation Grant of over 135 crore rupees. 


Ghaziabad is world’s second most polluted city of 2020: Reports
Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad was adjudged the second most polluted city out of the 50 ‘most polluted cities’ in the world in 2020 by a report prepared by British company HouseFresh. Ghaziabad reported an average Air Quality Index (AQI) of 2.5 particulate matter (PM) in 106.6µg/m3, the report said.

  • The report stated that China’s Hotan province is the most polluted city in the world as it recorded PM2.5 of 110.2µg/m3. The report attributed the poor air quality level in Hotan to sandstorms resulting due to its proximity to the Taklimakan Desert.
  • Bangladesh’s Manikganj was ranked as the third most polluted city of the world with a PM2.5 of 80.2µg/m3.
  • As per Swiss Air Quality expert IQAir, Indian cities like Bulandshahr, Bhiwandi, Noida, Greater Noida, Kanpur, Lucknow, Delhi, Faridabad and Meerut are among the most polluted cities in the world.

INS Tabar participates in Exercise Konkan 2021 with Britain’s Royal Navy
INS Tabar is participating in the bilateral Exercise Konkan 2021 between the Indian Navy and Britain’s Royal Navy in the UK to enhance military cooperation between the two sides.

  • It commenced Exercise Konkan 2021 with a maritime interception exercise with HMS Westminster off Portsmouth before it’s arrival in harbour.
  • As part of the harbour engagements of Exercise Konkan 2021, a number of professional interactions were held between the two sides. These included Subject Matter Expert (SME) exchanges on electric propulsion, unmanned surface vessels and electronic navigation. A visit to the Joint Maritime Security Centre at Potsdown Hill was also held for a team from Tabar.


RBI creates composite FI-Index to capture extent of financial inclusion across country
The Reserve Bank of India has created a composite Financial Inclusion Index (FI-Index) to capture the extent of financial inclusion across the country.

  • The annual FI-Index for the period ending March 2021 is 53.9 against 43.4 for the period ending March 2017. The FI-Index will be published annually in July every year, the RBI said.
  • The FI-Index comprises three broad parameters — Access (35%), Usage (45%), and Quality (20%), with each of these consisting of dimensions computed based on many indicators.It also captures information on the financial inclusion aspects in a single value ranging between 0-100, where 0 represents complete financial exclusion and 100 indicates full financial inclusion.

KVG Bank launches FRUITS portal 
The Dharwad-headquartered Karnataka Vikas Grameena Bank (KVGB), in association with the Karnataka government, has launched ‘Farmer Registration and Unified Beneficiary Information System’ (FRUITS) portal.

  • The FRUITS portal is the first of its kind in the country where in the land and other details of all the farmers in the State are being captured.
  • In this latest initiative by the Karnataka government, all the farmers will be registered and given a FRUITS ID (FID) number. Using this number, the financial and lending institutions can access the land details of farmers as well as their borrowings and take a quick decision on lending to them depending on their requirements.

HDFC unveils ‘Green & Sustainable’ FD
Leading mortgage lender HDFC has announced the introduction of ‘Green & Sustainable Deposits’ to safeguard the environment from climate change.

  • These fixed deposits will be directed towards financing green and sustainable housing credit solutions and services, HDFC said.
  • With a deposit period of 36-120 months, both residents and NRIs can invest in this instrument that will offer interest rates up to 6.55% p.a. “Senior citizens will be eligible for an additional 0.25% p.a. on deposits up to ₹2 crore.
  • Additional ROI of 0.10% p.a. will be applicable on these deposits up to ₹50 lakh per calendar month per customer if placed/renewed through our online platform.

SBI Life launches new-age term insurance policy – SBI Life eShield Next
SBI Life Insurance has launched a new-age protection solution  ‘SBI Life eShield Next’, an individual, non-linked, non-participating, life insurance pure risk premium product.

  • This means that the policy is neither linked to the stock market nor shares any profit or dividends with the policyholders.
  • The policy works by ‘levelling up’ the required insurance protection, through an increase in sum assured linked to the significant ‘level-up milestones in one’s life, like getting married, becoming a parent or buying a new house.

BoM tops PSU banks chart in terms of loan, saving deposit growth in Q1
State-owned Bank of Maharashtra (BoM) has emerged as the top performer among public sector lenders in terms of loan and savings deposit growth during the first quarter of the current financial year.

  • The Pune-headquartered lender recorded 14.46 per cent increase in gross advances at Rs 1,10,592 lakh crore in April-June period of 2021-22, as per the published data of BoM.
  • It was followed by Punjab & Sind Bank which posted 10.13 per cent growth in advances with aggregate loans at Rs 67,933 crore at the end of June 2021.

GIC shuts Dubai office, will shift to GIFT City 
General Insurance Corporation (GIC Re) has said that it has had to shut down its Dubai office as its licence was not renewed by the Dubai authority. Following this, the corporation has decided to carry out its operations from the Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City) in India.

  • GIFT City is the only International Financial Services Centre in India, which is the financial services equivalent of special economic zones focusing on exports. Companies here function like offshore entities.
  • Further, they conduct business that would otherwise be done offshore. The GIFT IFSC regulator had recently issued regulations permitting Indian and foreign reinsurers to set up offices there.

PayNearby ties up with RBL Bank, Visa for payment devices
PayNearby said it has partnered with Visa and RBL Bank to launch SoftPoS and mPoS for its over 1.5 million retail network.

  • With the addition of these options, PayNearby said it is the first company to launch an all-inclusive digital package for retailers that is form-factor agnostic and provides a wide choice to end consumers.
  • Its upgraded digital payment package now supports QR code payment, UPI payment, Aadhaar Pay, SMS payment, and card payment through mobile tokenization.


Sreejesh to be brand ambassador of adventure tourism
The immense tourism potential of Kadamakudy will be tapped as part of which road connectivity is being improved, Minister for Public Works and Tourism P.A. Mohammed Riyas has said.

  • He was speaking after inaugurating the Varapuzha-Kadamakudy road that was resurfaced using BMBC and developed with a walkway and parking space.
  • Olympian P.R. Sreejesh will be made brand ambassador of adventure tourism in Kerala. The feasibility of operating a solar boat in Muziris would be probed.

Olympic medallist Saikhom Mirabai Chanu becomes brand ambassador for Amway’s Nutrilite range
Direct selling FMCG firm Amway India announced that it has appointed Olympian Saikhom Mirabai Chanu as the brand ambassador for Amway and its Nutrilite range of products.

  • Chanu will spearhead the company’s campaigns focused on product ranges such as Nutrilite Daily, Omega and All Plant Protein among others.


Maki Kaji, the ‘Godfather of Sudoku,’ passes away 
The Godfather of Sudoku, Maki Kaji, passed away at the age of 69, due to bile duct cancer.

  • Maki Kaji was the president of Nikoli Co. Ltd. It is a Japanese puzzle manufacturer. He was popularly called as “the father of Sudoku” as he played a key role in popularizing this number game.
  • He also invented other puzzle games including Masyu.


“The Dream of Revolution: A Biography of Jayaprakash Narayan”, book by Sujata Prasad 
The book titled “The Dream of Revolution: A Biography of Jayaprakash Narayan” is going to be released on August 23, 2021. the book has been written by historian Bimal Prasad and author Sujata Prasad.

  • The book marks the biography of revolutionary leader and independence activist Jayaprakash Narayan, popularly referred to as JP or Lok Nayak.
  • The book will be published by the Penguin Random House India.

Lahore: Book 1 of the Partition Trilogy’ book by Manreet Sodhi Someshwar
The. New book titled ‘Lahore: Book 1 of the Partition Trilogy’ book by Manreet Sodhi Someshwar has been released recently.

  • This  book will be published by HarperCollins India.

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