Daily Current Affairs 2 April 2022 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
India, Australia to collaborate in lithium and cobalt identification projects
India and Australia have agreed to jointly undertake due diligence of greenfield and brownfield Lithium and Cobalt mineral assets that holds critical and strategic interest for both countries.
- The plan plan is to involve agencies and companies in both the countries to identify opportunities that come up for mining these key minerals and take joint investment decisions and acquisition of the assets in Australia.
- Both India and Australia have committed an initial investment of $ 6 Million for the joint due diligence process in the 50:50 ratio of participating interest.
Maharashtra launches scheme to offer personal loans for prisoners
Maharashtra home minister Dilip Walse Patil said that the Maharashtra government has decided to offer personal loans of up to ₹50,000 to prisoners against their earnings from work done in jail .
- The state government launched a scheme to provide personal loans for prisoners with the aim to improve the living standard of the families of the inmates.
- The Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank will give loans under the scheme up to ₹50,000 at an interest rate of 7 per cent. The scheme will be implemented on a pilot basis at Yerawada Central Jail, Pune.
Karnataka Introduces Vinaya Samarasya Initiative
The Karnataka government announced the Vinaya Samarasya Yojana as a public awareness campaign against caste prejudice in the state’s gramme panchayats. It will be formally launched on April 14, the birth anniversary of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.
- The initiative was named after Vinay, a three-year-old Dalit kid who strayed into a temple in Miyapur hamlet in Karnataka’s Koppal district to seek shelter from the rain in September 2021. His family has faced even greater hostility since being fined Rs 25,000 by village elders.
- In the interim, the area’s 1,500 residents, mainly from the Ganiga tribe, had intensified their persecution of Vinay’s family, forcing them to flee the hamlet and forsake their valuables, including agricultural land.
Govt keeps interest rate of small savings schemes unchanged for Q1FY23
The government said it had decided to keep interest rates on small savings instruments unchanged for the April-June quarter, despite the RBI calling for a reduction in these rates in the 9-118 basis points range.The interest rate has not been revised since the first quarter of 2020-21.
- These small saving schemes interest rate includes Public Provident Fund or PPF interest rate, National Savings Certificate or NSC interest rate and post office small saving scheme interest rates.
- So, PPF interest rate will continue to yield 7.10 per cent in April to June 2022 quarter whereas NSC interest rate would continue at 6.80 per cent per annum. Those who have Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana or SSY accounts would continue to get 7.60 per cent SSY interest rate on their deposits in first quarter of the new financial year.
- The interest rate on 5-year senior citizen saving scheme would also continue to deliver 7.40 per cent for the first quarter of new fiscal. However, savings interest rate would continue at 4 per cent per annum
- Term deposits of one to five years will fetch an interest in the range of 5.5-6.7 per cent, to be paid quarterly, while five-year recurring deposits will earn a higher interest of 5.8 per cent.
UP overtakes West Bengal as leading producer of Vegetables, AP maintains dominance in Fruits
After two years, Uttar Pradesh has reclaimed its status as the leading producer of vegetables, relegating West Bengal to second place, although the difference between the two is now more than a million tonnes. Andhra Pradesh, on the other hand, continues to be the leading fruit producer.
- Vegetable production in Uttar Pradesh is expected to be 29.58 million tonnes (mt) in the 2021-22 crop year (July-June), down from 29.16 mt the previous year, according to statistics presented in the Lok Sabha , while West Bengal output is expected to drop to 28.23 mt from 30.33 mt. In 2018-19, the difference between Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal in vegetable output was roughly 0.7 million tonnes.
- Madhya Pradesh, with 2.59 mt, Bihar, with 17.77 mt, and Maharashtra, with 16.78 mt, are the other leading producers of vegetables this year, according to statistics.
Philippines, US Kick Off Large-Scale Balikatan Military Exercise
The Philippines and the United States kicked off their biggest joint military drills since 2015, underscoring improved defence ties after President Rodrigo Duterte had scaled back some earlier war games to pursue warmer ties with China.
- Balikatan 2022 exercise will take place across Luzon in the Philippines region near Taiwan, from March 28 to April 8, 2022.
- Around 8,900 Filipino and American troops are participating in the military drill, making it the largest Balikatan military exercise ever.
BANKING & FINANCE
Dearness Allowance Hiked By 3% To 34%, Effective From January 1, 2022
The cabinet has approved the proposal to increase the dearness allowance for central government employees and pensioners by 3 per cent to 34 per cent of the basic pay from 31 per cent previously, effective January 1, 2022.
- That increase in DA is per the accepted formula, which is based on the recommendations of the 7th central pay commission.
- Indeed, retail inflation, or the consumer price inflation, has remained above the upper-end of the Reserve Bank of India’s target range of 2-6 per cent for two straight months this year.
RBI extends timelines for banks to use lockable cassettes in ATMs by a year
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has extended the timeline for banks to use lockable cassettes, which could be swapped at the time of cash replenishment, in their ATMs by a year to March 31, 2023.
- The RBI decided to extend the timeline after it received representations from various banks and Indian Banks’ Association expressing difficulties in meeting the timeline.
Central Bank of India partners Kwik.ID to digitize customer onboarding
State-owned Central Bank of India has selected Kwik.ID to implement digital know your customer (KYC), video KYC and eKYC for its network across India, a statement said.
- This partnership will support the bank in driving its digital transformation agenda and supporting digital finance initiatives championed by the government.
- With Kwik.ID — an AI-based video KYC solution — the lender aims to digitize 10 million customers’ onboarding annually and streamline their end-to-end processes.
HDFC ERGO launches digital customer rewards programme VAULT
HDFC ERGO General Insurance Co. has launched a digital customer engagement and rewards programme – VAULT.
- Under this programme, the insurer will incentivise its Optima Restore Health insurance customers by way of reward points for performing certain activities like staying insured under the policy for more than two years, holding two active HDFC ERGO retail policies, interacting digitally, using the cashless network of healthcare providers, etc.
- These reward points, equivalent to cash, can be redeemed against a wide range of wellness offers like pharmacy vouchers, doctor consultations, etc; or can be used for social causes or buying insurance products.
HDFC Bank, Shoppers Stop launch co-branded credit cards
HDFC Bank and Shoppers Stop announced the launch of a new range of co-branded credit cards.
- The credit cards will be available for over 80 lakh ‘First Citizen’ customers of Shoppers Stop along with HDFC Bank customers.
- The two aim to source over 10 lakh cards in five years through this tie-up.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Manipur govt signs MoU with Samsung and Abhitech to set up sports digital experience centre in Imphal
Giving an impetus to Digital India, the Manipur state government has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with tech-giant Samsung Data System India and Abhitech IT Solutions for setting up a world class ‘Sports Digital Experience Centre’ as a part of Manipur Olympian Park and at Khuman Lampak Sports Complex.
- With the setting up of the Digital Experience Centre, various achievements of Olympians from Manipur will be digitally displayed making the public aware about their achievements. Achievements of other players will also be displayed at Khuman Lampak Sports Complex.
Adidas unveils official match ball of 2022 FIFA World Cup
Sportswear giant Adidas unveiled Al Rihla — the official match ball for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
- It is the 14th successive ball that Adidas has created for the FIFA World Cup, designed to support the game at high speed as it travels faster in flight than any other World Cup ball.
Army chief presents President’s Colours to two battalions of Dogra regiment
General MM Naravane, Chief of the Army Staff, presented the renowned President’s Colours to two battalions of the Dogra Regiment namely 20 DOGRA and 21 DOGRA,during a spectacular Color Presentation Parade.
- The Army Chief lauded the Dogra Regiment’s rich traditions in all sectors of military life, including operations, training, and sports, following the parade.
- The COAS also commended the newly raised units for their remarkable performance in such a short time and wished all ranks well in their endeavors to serve the country with pride.
Actress Deepika Padukone named in inaugural TIME100 Impact Award
Deepika Padukone has been honoured at the TIME100 Impact Awards for the second time in her career. She attended the prestigious ceremony held at the Museum of the Future in Dubai.
- With this honour, Deepika has once again joined a list of several influential scientists, politicians, activists, and artists. She was lauded for her outstanding commitment to mental health advocacy.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
CJI N V Ramana launches software to transmit court orders swiftly
Chief Justice of India N V Ramana launched FASTER (Fast and Secured Transmission of Electronic Records) — a digital platform to communicate interim orders, stay orders, bail orders etc., of the Supreme Court to authorities concerned through a secured electronic communication channel.
- FASTER comes into being after the bench headed by CJI Ramana took suo motu cognizance of delay in the release of convicts even after granting of bail on grounds such as non-receipt or non-verification of judicial orders.
BOOKS & AUTHORS
‘Spoorthi Pradatha Sri Somayya’ authored by K Syam Prasad
Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, released a book titled ‘Spoorthi Pradatha Sri Somayya’ authored by Syam Prasad.
- The book is based on the life story of late Shri Somepalli Somaiah, a social worker from Andhra Pradesh. He inspired youth to dedicate their lives to social welfare.