Daily Current Affairs 23 August 2019 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
Bharatcraft portal: Gadkari plans India’s own desi version of Alibaba, Amazon
Taking inspiration from e-commerce behemoths like Alibaba and Amazon, the government is planning to launch its own desi version of an e-commerce portal. The government has named the portal Bharatcraft, which will provide a platform for MSMEs to markets and sell their products.
- Gadkari also added that the Bharatcraft portal has a huge potential to generate revenue worth ₹10 lakh crore in next 2-3 years.
- The government has set a target to increase the contribution of MSMEs in the manufacturing sector to 50 per cent in the next five years, he added.
Shripad Yesso Naik inaugurates two-day National Conference on Varmam Science in Chennai
Union Minister of State for AYUSH Shripad Yesso Naik inaugurated the two-day National Conference on Varmam Science, a part of the Siddha system of medicine in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
- He said that all Indian traditional medical systems are being promoted by the Centre to ensure a holistic health care.
Govt to make FASTag mandatory for all vehicles from Dec 2019
Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari has announced that FASTags will become mandatory for all vehicles from December this year. FASTag enabled vehicles can cruise through the dedicated FASTag lane without stopping at toll plazas on National Highways.
- FASTags are being issued by 22 certified banks through various channels such as Point-of-Sale at NH toll plazas and selected bank branches.
Punjab to canalise its rivers with technical support from World Bank, ADB
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has announced that his government would canalise all the rivers of the state, taking technical support from the World Bank (WB) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
- Singh also announced dedicated village-relief teams in flood-affected areas in Sultanpur Lodhi and Jalandhar
5th UIDAI Aadhaar Seva Kendra becomes operational in Hisar, Haryana’s first
Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) fifth stand-alone Aadhaar Seva Kendra has become operational on dry run basis at Hisar in Haryana. Till now, four Aadhaar Seva Kendras are operational.
- Out of the four ASKs which have become operational on dry-run basis, two are located in Delhi, and one each in Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh and Agra, Uttar Pradesh
Hollongi Airport will be completed by March 31, 2022: Hardeep Singh Puri
Union Minister of Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri yesterday announced that the Hollongi Airport in Itanagar will be completed by March 31, 2022.
- Mr Puri further informed that the flight connectivity between Tezu-Guwahati and Tezu-Jorhat under Regional Connectivity Scheme will also start operating this year as the license has already been obtained from Airport Authority of India (AAI) for operation of Tezu Airport in Lohit District.
Discovery, WWF tie up to preserve Sundarbans
To help save the world’s only mangrove tiger habitat, Discovery India and WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) India have partnered with the Forest Directorate, the government of West Bengal and local communities in the Sundarbans.
- With a vision to create climate-smart villages in the Sundarbans, WWF India and Discovery India are working with government agencies, civil society partners and scientific institutions to build the capacity of village panchayats and local communities to incorporate climate resilience into development planning, thereby helping secure livelihoods, biodiversity and ecosystem services.
Pakistan put on FATF’s ‘enhanced blacklist’ over terror financing
The Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering has put Pakistan on its ‘enhanced blacklist’ over terror financing. Pakistan now faces being placed on FATF’s overall blacklist. The FATF had warned Pakistan to meet its commitment by October or face action after the country failed to complete its action plan on terror financing.
- The FATF APG meeting was held in Canberra, Australia and the discussions lasted over seven hours over two days.
Russia sends its first humanoid robot Fedor into space
Russia has launched an unmanned rocket carrying a life-size humanoid robot that will spend 10 days learning to assist astronauts on the International Space Station.
- Named Fedor, short for Final Experimental Demonstration Object Research, the robot is the first ever sent up by Russia.
Iran unveils new missile defense system
Iran has unveiled a state-of-the-artsurface-to-air missile defense system Bavar-373 designed and manufactured by experts at home as the Islamic Republic marks National Defense Industry Day.
- Bavar-373 is a mobile missile defense system designed to intercept and destroy incoming hostile targets. The system employs missiles that have a maximum range of 300 kilometers.
BANKING & FINANCE
RBI allows e-mandates on cards, advances RTGS timings
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has permitted processing of e-mandate on credit and debit cards for recurring transactions (merchant payments) with a cap of ₹2,000 from September 1.
- The RBI added that no charges should be levied or recovered from the cardholder for availing the e-mandate facility on cards for recurring transactions.
- The direction is applicable for transactions performed using all types of cards—debit, credit and Prepaid Payment Instruments (PPIs), including wallets.
- Separately, the central bank brought forward by an hour the time when the real time gross settlement (RTGS) system will become available.
- Transfer of funds through the system will be available from 7am, instead of the present 8am, from August 26.
- Earlier this month, RBI had decided to allow round-the-clock fund transfers through NEFT from December.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Acko partners with ZestMoney to offer credit insurance
Acko General Insurance, an insurtech company, has partnered with ZestMoney, a consumer lending fintech, to offer credit insurance.
- This insurance will help ZestMoney customers cover their monthly EMI payments during times of crisis. ZestMoney offers instant financing to consumers across 1000+ online portals and provides them the option of paying through EMIs even if the consumers don’t own a credit card.
Infosys and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign announce partnership in precision medicine
Digital services and consulting major Infosys has announced a strategic partnership with University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) to develop new technologies and systems in precision medicine.
- Through this partnership, Infosys also becomes a member of the Centre for Computational Biotechnology and Genomic Medicine (CCBGM).
SEBI announces reward of Rs 1 crore to insider trading informants
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has announced a reward of upto one crore rupees for informants willing to provide credible information regarding insider trading cases. This will be a part of the detailed set of rules for the new ‘Informant Mechanism’ under Prohibition of Insider Trading Regulations that was approved by the SEBI board
WADA suspends accreditation of NDTL for six months
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has suspended the accreditation of India’s National Dope Testing Laboratory (NDTL) for six months in what could be a massive blow to anti-doping movement in the country with less than a year left for Tokyo Olympics.
This suspension has been imposed due to non-conformities with the International Standard for Laboratories (ISL).
Vikram Rathour replaces Bangar as Team India’s batting coach
Former opener Vikram Rathour will replace Sanjay Bangar as India’s new batting coach while Bharath Arun and R Sridhar were expectedly retained as bowling and fielding coaches respectively.
- The senior national selection committee headed by MSK Prasad recommended three names each for all the support staff positions and the top names in each category will be appointed after the formalities with regards to Conflict of Interest declaration is complete.
Haryana ASI wins gold in wrestling at WPFG
Assistant-Sub-Inspector (ASI) of Haryana Police Manjit has won a gold medal in wrestling during the World Police and Fire Games (WPFG) held in Chengdu in China.
- Manjit clinched the gold medal in the 86 kg category.
Constable Monali Jadhav wins 3 medals at World Police Games
Constable Monali Jadhav from Maharashtra won three medals, including two golds, at the recently concluded World Police and Fire Games International Championship held in Chengdu, China. Jadhav is attached to the Jalamb police station in Buldhana district of Maharashtra.
Indian men’s hockey team clinches Olympic Test event trophy
The Indian men’s hockey team won the Olympic Test event, beating New Zealand 5-0 to avenge the loss it endured in their round robin clash.
- The Olympic Test Event held in Tokyo, Japan.
Former PM Manmohan Singh takes oath as Rajya Sabha member from Rajasthan
Former Prime Minister and Congress leader Manmohan Singh took oath as a member of the Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan.
- The 86-year-old was elected unopposed to the Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan where the Congress has a slim majority in the state Assembly.
Cabinet approves appointment of Ajay Kumar Bhalla as Home Secretary
The Union Cabinet approved the appointment of Ajay Kumar Bhalla as Home Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs.
- Bhalla, a 1984-batch IAS officer of the Assam-Meghalaya cadre will succeed Rajiv Gauba who will retire on August 31.
- Rajiv Gauba has been appointed Cabinet Secretary.
HDFC Bank elevates Srinivasan Vaidyanathan to CFO level
Private lender HDFC Bank has appointed Srinivasan Vaidyanathan as its Chief Financial Officer (CFO) as the bank seeks to strengthen compliance with regulatory norms. He was earlier Group Finance Head.
- Incumbent CFO Sashidhar Jagdishan will continue to head the finance function and shoulder additional responsibilities as in charge of verticals like legal and secretarial, human resources, corporate communications, infrastructure, administration, corporate social responsibility and change agent of the bank.
NDTV interim CEO Suparna Singh resigns
Media company NDTV said that its Interim CEO Suparna Singh has resigned from her role with immediate effect. Singh who was the former head of NDTV Convergence was named as its CEO in December 2017.
Culture Minister Prahlad Patel launches book titled- the Diary of Manu Gandhi’
Culture and Tourism Minister Prahlad Singh Patel launched the book titled- the Diary of Manu Gandhi’. The book has been brought out by National Archives of India, on the occasion of 150th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi in collaboration with Oxford University Press.
- The Diary of Manu Gandhi originally written in Gujarati language has been edited and translated by a well known scholar Dr. Tridip Suhrud. The first volume of the book covers the period of 1943-1944. Manu Gandhi was a grand niece of Mahatma Gandhi.