Daily Current Affairs 26 February 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
Centre unveils ‘National Urban Digital Mission’ for future smart cities
The ‘National Urban Digital Mission’ was launched by union housing and urban affairs minister Hardeep Singh Puri and minister of electronics and IT Ravi Shankar Prasad during a virtual event.
- Some other key initiatives including India Urban Data Exchange (IUDX), SmartCode, Smart Cities 2.0 website, and Geospatial Management Information System (GMIS) — were unveiled during the ‘National Urban Digital Mission’ (NUDM) launch.
- The NUDM will create a shared digital infrastructure that can consolidate and cross-leverage the various digital initiatives of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, enabling cities and towns across India to benefit from holistic and diverse forms of support, in keeping with their needs and local challenges.
Union Cabinet approves President’s rule in Puducherry
The Union Cabinet approved a proposal by the Home Ministry to dissolve the Puducherry Assembly and impose President’s rule in the Union Territory. The decision comes days after the Congress-led government had lost power during a vote of confidence.
- Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said the decision was taken as no party claimed to form a government following the resignation of the Chief Minister.
- Subsequently, the Lieutenant Governor had recommended President’s rule.
Karnataka Government to set up Flower Processing Centre
The Horticulture Department of Karnataka and the International Flower Auction Bangalore- IFAB will collaborate to set up a flower processing centre in order to convert unsold flowers into various forms of useful products.
- A large number of flower growers from the state will be benefitted from the unit instead of dumping their produce or abandoning the gardens.
- Karnataka has 18,000 hectares of land under flower cultivation. The state accounts for 14% of India’s total area under flower production.
Kushinagar Airport gets DGCA licence for international flights
The Kushinagar Airport has been granted the licence to operate international flights and has now become the third such airport in Uttar Pradesh after Chaudhary Charan Singh International Airport in Lucknow, and Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport in Varanasi.
- The airport got all necessary clearances from Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and its director general Arun Kumar handed over the licence to Kushinagar Airport director A K Dwivedi in New Delhi.
- Kushinagar Airport has become the third international airport of Uttar Pradesh and the 87th in India.
BANKING & FINANCE
Stellapps, IPPB tie up to drive financial inclusion for dairy farmers
Dairy-tech start-up Stellapps has tied up with India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) to digitise the milk procurement value chain and promote banking facilities at milk collection centres.
- As part of memorandum of understanding, a pilot project has been launched in four villages with 200 farmers at a greenfield dairy in Tamil Nadu’s Dharmapuri district.
- Through the tie-up, Stellapps is aiming to bring dairy farmers in the financial mainstream across villages in Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Bihar, and Rajasthan in the coming months.
Haryana Deputy CM Dushyant Chautala re-elected TTFI president
Haryana”s Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala was re-elected as President of Table Tennis Federation of India for a four-year term.
- For the post of secretary, M. P. Singh made way for Arun Banerjee while Gurpreet Singh became the treasurer, a post vacated by Banerjee.
- Mr. Dhanraj Choudhary was named the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), M. P. Singh takes over from Choudhary as Advisor, and V. K. Bawa will be the Chief Financial Officer.
ICICI Bank launches ‘Namma Chennai Smart Card’
ICICI Bank partnered with the Greater Chennai Corporation (GCC) and Chennai Smart City Limited (CSCL) for the launch of the Namma Chennai Smart Card.
- Namma Chennai Smart Card is a Ru-Pay powered co-branded, contactless prepaid card that facilitates various digital payments like tax and utility bill payments Greater Chennai Corporation centers.
- Additionally, the prepaid card facilitates retail payments within Chennai as well as in retail stores and e-commerce websites across the country.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
ICRA expects Indian economy to contract 7 per cent in current fiscal
India’s rating agency, ICRA has projected the Indian economy to contract 7 percent in the current fiscal (FY21).
- For the next fiscal, i.e. FY22 (2021-22), ICRA expects a considerable rebound in India’s economic growth to 10.5 per cent due to higher central government spending, and a pick-up in consumption.
Moody’s ups GDP growth forecast to 13.7% in FY22
Moody’s upped India’s growth projection for the next financial year beginning April 1, to 13.7 per cent, from 10.8 per cent estimated earlier, on the back of normalisation of activity and growing confidence in the market with the rollout of Covid-19 vaccine.
- For current fiscal, the US-based rating agency expects the economy to contract 7 per cent, lower than its previous estimate of 10.6 per cent contraction.
China topples US as India’s top trading partner in 2020
China topped India’s list of trading partners in 2020 despite high tension between the countries, showed provisional data from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
- China had emerged as India’s biggest trade partner in the first half of the financial year 2020-21 too, pipping the US, which had held that position since 2018-19. In 2020, two-way trade between India and China stood at $77.7 billion.
- India’s long-standing dependence on Chinese heavy machinery, telecom equipment and other products has led to the ballooning of trade deficit with China at $40 billion. At $58.7 billion, India’s imports from China were more than collective purchases from the US and the UAE together.
- In terms of exports, India’s shipments to China grew 11 per cent YoY to $19 billion in 2020. However, experts say the increase in exports to China could also be a threat to India amid increasing tensions along the border.
Exporters’ body FIEO elects A Sakthivel as its new president
Exporters’ body Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) said it has elected A Sakthivel as its new president.
- Sakthivel, a leading knitwear exporter, is currently chairman of Apparel Export Promotion Council.
- He has replaced S K Saraf, who is a Mumbai-based businessman.
Shantanu Mitra appointed CEO and MD of Fullerton India Credit Company
Fullerton India Credit Company has appointed Shantanu Mitra as the new CEO and Managing Director. The appointment is with effect from April 2.
- Mitra has over 40 years of experience in financial services, with over 20 years at Standard Chartered and Citibank, where he had stints in India, Singapore and Thailand.
- His last role in Standard Chartered was Senior Regional Risk Officer, India, Middle East and Africa. His previous experience with Fullerton included a stint from 2010 to 2017
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Chandigarh becomes the first Union Territory in India to launch Carbon Watch
Chandigarh became the first state or Union Territory in India to launch Carbon Watch, a mobile application to assess the carbon footprint of an individual. Although the app can be accessed by everyone, it has specific options for the residents of Chandigarh to compile a detail study.
- The application can be downloaded through a QR code in Android supported smart cell phones.
- Carbon footprint is the amount of greenhouse gases-especially carbon dioxide-released into the atmosphere by a particular human activity.
BOOKS & AUTHORS
Nobel laureate Olga Tokarczuk’s art book hits bookstores
“The Lost Soul,” a unique art book with text by Nobel-winning Polish author Olga Tokarczuk about a man who loses his soul in the daily rush, hits bookstores in the United States.
- The book has many meanings, also inspired by its nostalgic, meditative drawings by Polish artist Joanna Concejo.