Daily Current Affairs 1st July, 2021

Daily Current Affairs 1 July 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.

NATIONAL NEWS

Union Cabinet approves stimulus package of Rs 6 lakh 28 thousand crore as part of Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Package
The Union Cabinet gave approval to the stimulus package of 6 lakh 28 thousand crore rupees announced by the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman as part of the Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Package. 

  • The government has also given approval to the announcement made regarding extension of Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana from May to November this year. The financial implication this year over the scheme will be over 93 thousand crore rupees.
  • Union Cabinet, has also given its approval for availing the benefit under Aatmanirbhar Bharat Rojgar Yojana (ABRY) for another nine months from 30th June, 2021 to 31st March, 2022.

CCEA approves Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme for power DISCOMs worth over Rs. 3 lakh crore
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved a Reforms-based and Results-linked, Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme. 

  • The Scheme seeks to improve the operational efficiencies and financial sustainability of all DISCOMs and Power Departments excluding Private Sector DISCOMs by providing conditional financial assistance to them for strengthening of supply infrastructure.
  • The assistance will be based on meeting pre-qualifying criteria as well as upon achievement of basic minimum benchmarks by the DISCOM evaluated on the basis of agreed evaluation framework tied to financial improvements.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, Gambia on Refurbishing Personnel Administration & Governance Reforms
Cabinet has approved the signing of Memorandum of Understanding between Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions and the Public Service Commission of Gambia on refurbishing personnel administration and governance reforms.

  • The MoU will help in understanding the personnel administration of both the countries and enable in improving the system of governance through replicating, adapting and innovating some of the best practices and processes.

CBSE introduces Financial Literacy Textbook for Class 6 students curated by NPCI
Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) introduced a Financial Literacy Textbook for students of Class VI. As per the release, National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has curated the book.

  • This book will be used for a newly introduced elective subject ‘Financial Literacy’. It will enable students to have an understanding of basic financial concepts at a preliminary stage of their education.

Environment and Forest Minister says India has taken target of creating additional 2.5 billion tonnes carbon sequestration by 2030
Environment and Forest Minister Prakash Javadekar said, India has taken a target of creating additional 2.5 billion tonnes carbon sequestration by 2030. He said in last seven years, the tree cover within and outside the forest has grown by 15,000 square kilometres.

  • The Minister kicked off plantation drive by planting a Parijat tree at his residence. Mr Javadekar appealed people to plant a tree and ensure its growth.

Implement ‘one nation, one ration card’ scheme till July 31: Supreme Court
THE Supreme Court set a deadline of July 31 for states to implement the ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ system and for the Centre to create a national database of unorganised workers.

  • The court also pulled up the Centre for the delay in setting up a national web portal to register migrant and unorganised workers, calling this“lackadaisical” and “unpardonable”.

Govt Partners With Intel India To Launch First-Of-Its-Kind Initiative To Advance Deep-Tech Based Research In Country
In a big boost to the Indian research community, the government has partnered with Intel India to launch a ‘first-of-its-kind’ initiative to advance deep tech based research in the country.

  • The opportunities will be offered by the first-of-its-kind research initiative called ‘Fund for Industrial Research Engagement (FIRE)’ launched by the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB), a statutory body of Govt’s Department of Science and Technology (DST), in collaboration with Intel India.
  • The FIRE initiative will increase research opportunities in the space of Artificial Intelligence (AI)/Machine Learning (ML), platform systems, circuits & architecture, Internet of Things (IoT), materials & devices, security, and so on from edge to cloud.
  • The initiative will enable Indian researchers to pursue industry-relevant research opportunities in the areas of deep technologies that are novel, transformative, and can have a ground-breaking impact on a national scale.


INTERNATIONAL NEWS

India jumps 3 spots up  in global start-up ranking
India has jumped three spots up in the global start-up ranking this year, a possible silver lining amid the chaos that the pandemic has wrought upon us. India stands at the 20th spot among the top 100 countries that have been ranked in the Global Startup Ecosystem Index 2021 by Startup Blink.

  • The country was in the 17th spot in 2019, after which it slid six spots down and stood at 23 in 2020. With this jump, India’s start-up ecosystem makes a re-entry into the global top 20 countries again.
  • Like last year, the US, the UK, Israel, Canada and Germany are in the top five spots this year too and continue their lead.
  • India currently has 43 of its cities listed in the top 1000, globally, with Bengaluru, New Delhi and Mumbai in the top 20. Getting three of its cities featured among the top 20 globally is a feat that only one other country has trumped — the US. China, which is well known for its robust start-up environment, has only two of its cities listed in the top 20 — Beijing and Shanghai.

China Turns On World’s 2nd-Biggest Hydropower Dam
The first two generating units of the world’s second-biggest hydroelectric dam were officially turned in southwestern China, the government announced.The announcement comes ahead of the ruling Communist Party’s celebration this week of the official 100th anniversary of its 1921 founding

  • The Baihetan Dam on the Jinsha River, a tributary of the Yangtze, is part of Chinese efforts to curb surging fossil fuel demand by building more hydropower capacity at a time when dams have fallen out of favor in other countries due to environmental complaints.
  • Plans call for the 289-meter-tall (954-foot-tall) Baihetan Dam to have 16 generating units with a capacity of 1 million kilowatts each. That will make it second in size after the Three Gorges Dam, opened in 2003 on the Yangtze, with 22.5 million kilowatts of generating capacity.

Centre Inaugurates Asia’s Longest And World’s Fifth-Longest High Speed Track
Asia’s longest and the world’s fifth high speed test track was inaugurated at National Automotive Test Tracks (NATRAX) in Pithampur. Union Minister Prakash Javadekar virtually inaugurated the new facility at NATRAX being built under NATRiP (National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project) of the Heavy Industries Ministry.

  • The 11.3 km facility is likely to attract global players for automotive testing and reduce dependence of Indian OEMs on foreign testing tracks.
  • This one of its kind facility has two semi-circular curves that can test vehicles at a maximum neutral speed of 250 kmph without touching the steering, while with control on steering, vehicles can be driven up to 375 kmph on curves.

India Ranked At 10th Position In ITU’s Global Cybersecurity Index 2020
India is ranked 10th in the Global Cybersecurity Index 2020 (GCI) released by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the United Nations (UN) agency for information and communication technologies (ICT).

  • The United States has topped the GCI 2020.The United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia is tied on the second position followed by Estonia.
  • The GCI 2020 is the fourth edition of the annual index and ranked 194 countries. The GCI measures the commitment of countries to cybersecurity at a global level.
  • Countries were ranked on the basis of performance on five parameters, which includes: legal measures, technical measures, organisational measures, capacity development, and cooperation.


BANKING & FINANCE

Interest rates to remain unchanged on Small Savings Schemes, including NSC and PPF for second quarter of current Financial Year
The government has decided to keep the interest rates on Small Savings Schemes, including National Savings Certificate, NSC  and Public Provident Fund, PPF unchanged for the second quarter of  the Financial Year 2021-22. The second quarter starts on 1st July and ends on 30th September.

  • This is the fifth quarter (ending September 30, 2021) in a row that the finance ministry has retained the interest rate on various small savings schemes.

According to the announcement: (For Q-2 of FY2021-22)

  • Return on five-year deposit: 6.7 per cent
  • Rate on 12 months’ deposit: 5.5 per cent
  • National Savings Certificate (NSC) rate: 6.8 per cent
  • Interest on senior citizens savings scheme: 7.4 per cent
  • Interest on savings deposit for senior citizens: 4 per cent
  • Interest on Sukanya Samriddhi account scheme: 7.6 per cent
  • Interest on Public Provident Fund (PPF) scheme savings: 7.1 per cent

Innoviti & PhonePe partner to pioneer Dual-Display UPI 
Innoviti Payment Solutions, India’s largest provider of payment solutions to Enterprise merchants, and PhonePe, India’s largest digital payments platform announced the pioneering facility of Dual-Display-UPI.

  • This novel feature makes it safer and faster for customers to pay through UPI while shopping at Shoppers Stop’s outlets pan India.
  • Payments through UPI in multi-lane retail have been slow to take off with less than 4% penetration.  Dual-Display-UPI addresses this by using advanced technology to create a Dynamic QR, that carries the payment amount, merchant credentials and a secure transaction token.

Axis Bank strikes cloud computing deal with AWS for digital transformation
Amazon Web Services, (AWS), the cloud computing arm of e-commerce giant Amazon said that Axis Bank, India’s third-largest private sector bank, has selected AWS to accelerate its digital transformation program and meet the growing demand for its digital banking services.

  • As part of a multi-year agreement, Axis Bank will draw on the breadth and depth of AWS services. This includes containers, database, and compute, to build a portfolio of new digital financial services to bring advanced banking experiences to customers.
  • This includes online accounts that can be opened in under six minutes and instant digital payments, helping the bank increase customer satisfaction by 35 per cent and lower costs by 24 per cent.

Ujjivan SFB partners with LoanTap
Ujjivan Small Finance Bank has partnered with digital lender LoanTap to provide personal loans to salaried professionals.

  • This is part of Ujjivan SFB’s API banking initiative, through which over 150 APIs are available offering fast and secure tie-ups for digital lending and digital liabilities, payments to fintechs.


BUSINESS & ECONOMY

Reliance inks pact with ADNOC to build mega chemical project in UAE
Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) signed a strategic partnership with Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) to build a chlor-alkali, ethylene dichloride and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) production facility at TA’ZIZ in Ruwais, Abu Dhabi.

  • Under the terms of the agreement, the companies will construct an integrated plant with a capacity to produce 940,000 tonnes of chlor-alkali, 1.1 million tonnes of ethylene dichloride and 360,000 tonnes of PVC annually.
  • The project will be constructed in the TA’ZIZ Industrial Chemicals Zone, which is a joint venture between ADNOC and ADQ.

Credit growth to industry remained in negative zone during 2020-21: RBI
Credit growth to the industrial sector remained in the negative territory during 2020-21, mainly due to the COVID-19 pandemic and resultant lockdowns, RBI data showed.

  • However, “personal loans continued to grow at robust pace and recorded 13.5 per cent growth (Y-oY) in March 2021; industrial loan growth, on the other hand, remained negative during all quarters of 2020-21.
  • The data further revealed that private sector banks recorded higher loan growth when compared to public sector lenders. Their share in total credit increased to 36.5 per cent in March 2021 from 35.4 per cent a year ago and 24.8 per cent five years ago.


APPOINTMENTS

IIS Officer N Venudhar Reddy takes charge as Director General of All India Radio
Venudhar Reddy, an Indian Information service, IIS Officer of 1988 batch took charge as Director General of All India Radio.

  • Currently Working as Principal DG of News Services Division, All India Radio, he was given additional charge of AIR, upon the approval of the Appointments committee of the cabinet.
  • Mr Reddy earlier served as Joint Secretary in the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management under the Finance Ministry.

Amitabh Kant Gets 1-Yr Extension As Niti Aayog CEO
The Centre has granted a one-year extension to Amitabh Kant, chief executive officer (CEO) of National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) till June 2022.

  • This is for the third time that Kant’s tenure has been extended. Mr Kant was first appointed as the CEO of the federal policy think tank on February 17, 2016, for a fixed two-year term.


SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Government Launches “Atmanirbhar Krishi App” For Farmers
The government launched “Atmanirbhar Krishi App” to provide farmers with actionable agricultural insights and early weather alerts.

  • The wealth of information relevant to farmers curated by various government departments on a national digital platform ”KisanMitr” is now being made available through the ”Atmanirbhar Krishi App” in a manner comprehensible to them.
  • The App — in Android and Windows versions — is available in 12 languages for free of cost for farmers, start-ups, Krishi Vighyan Kendras, Self Help Groups, and NGOs.


OBITUARIES

Filmmaker Raj Kaushal Passes Away
Filmmaker Raj Kaushal, who directed movies like “Shaadi Ka Laddoo” and “Pyaar Mein Kabhi Kabhi”, passed away following a heart attack. He was in his 50s.

  • Apart from direction, Kaushal had also produced filmmaker Onir’s 2005 acclaimed drama “My Brother… Nikhil”, starring Sanjay Suri and Juhi Chawla.

Editor Of ‘Sudharma’ Sanskrit Daily, K.V. Sampath Kumar Passes Away
K V Sampath Kumar, editor of India’s only Sanskrit daily Sudharma for the past 31 years, passed away following a heart attack. He was 64.

  • Sudharma was founded by his father Kalale Nadadur Varadaraja Iyengar, a renowned Sanskrit scholar from Mysuru, on July15,1970.
  • He, along with his wife Vidushi K.S. Jayalakshmi, were awarded the Padma Shri in 2020 by the government in recognition of their untiring efforts to keep the publication alive against all odds.


BOOKS & AUTHORS

India presents 10 translated books of modern Indian literature to SCO
India presented English, Russian and Chinese translations of 10 classic works of modern literature written by prominent Indian authors in different languages to the headquarters of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

  • Indian Ambassador to China Vikram Misri presented the books to SCO Secretary General Vladimir Norov at the SCO secretariat in Beijing.
  • The translated books included, Arogyaniketan (Bengali) written by Tarashankar Bandyopadyay, Ordained by Fate (Urdu) by Rajender Singh Bedi, Illu (Telugu) by Rachakonda Vishwanatha Sastry, The Last Exit (Hindi) by Nirmal Varma, Longing for Sunshine (Assamese) by Sayed Abdul Malik, Mystery of the Missing Cap and other short stories (Odia) by Manoj Das, The Last Flicker (Punjabi) by Gurdial Singh, Of Men and Moments (Tamil) by Jayakanthan, Parva: A Tale of War, Peace, Love, Death, God and Man (Kannada) by S L Bhyrappa and The Promised Hand (Gujrati) by Jhaverchand Meghnani.


IMPORTANT DAYS

National Doctors’ Day
Every year, July 1 is celebrated as National Doctors’ Day by the Indian Medical Association (IMA). The day is dedicated to all the doctors and healthcare workers who have been serving the people by risking their lives.

  • The day is observed to commemorate the birth and death anniversary of former Bengal’s Chief Minister Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy.

National Chartered Accountants Day
July 1 is celebrated as National Chartered Accountant Day in India. The day is observed in order to celebrate the formation of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) on July 1, 1949.

  • The ICAI is the only licensing and regulatory body for accounting profession and financial auditing in India. Every accounting and finance organization including National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) have to follow the recommendations of accounting standards made by them.


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