Daily Current Affairs 3 February 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
Assam CM launches schemes for college students, literary bodies
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal launched two schemes to provide monetary assistance to college students and literary bodies of the state.
- Under Pragyan Bharati scheme, 3,26,046 college students were given Rs 1,500 each for purchasing textbooks, while a total of Rs 161 crore was reimbursed for the free admission of 4 lakh eligible students.
- The second scheme is Bhasha Gourab, under which the state government provided 21 Sahitya Sabhas (literary bodies) with a total of Rs 43 crore as a contribution towards their corpus funds.Under the scheme, 600 writers have also got Rs 50,000 each to help in their literary activities.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Ford, Google join hands to offer cloud-based data services
Ford Motor Co will tap into software, artificial intelligence and cloud computing offered by Alphabet Inc’s Google to develop new consumer services and modernize internal operations.
- As part of a six-year partnership, the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker will incorporate the tech giant’s Android operating system into its Ford and Lincoln vehicles starting in 2023.
- The companies will also form a group, Team Upshift, to explore uses of data to develop new retail, create new ownership offers and other services for Ford customers.
Aung San Suu Kyi detained as army grabs power in Myanmar
Myanmar’s military seized power in a bloodless coup detaining democratically elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi and imposing a one-year state of emergency.
- The intervention ended a decade of transition from outright military rule in Myanmar, with the generals justifying the power grab by alleging fraud in the November elections that Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) party won in a landslide.
Anish Shah appointed as chairman of Mahindra Finance
Mahindra and Mahindra Financial Services announced the appointment of Anish Shah as the chairman of the board, effective April 2, 2021.
- Shah is already a director of the company. He is the deputy managing director and group CFO of Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M) Ltd.
- Shah has taken over from Dhananjay Mungale, who will continue to be an independent director on the board of Mahindra Finance.
Ajay Singh re-elected as President of Boxing Federation of India
Ajay Singh has been re-elected as President of the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) after defeating former Maharashtra sports minister Ashish Shelar in the polls.
- Singh received 37 votes while Shelar, who has held many top positions in sport, including the role of President of Maharashtra Cricket Association and Mumbai District Football Association, got 27 votes in the BFI elections.
A.R. Rahman presented ‘Alert Being Icon Award’
Music composer A R Rahman was presented with ‘ALERT Being ICON’ award.
- At the fourth edition of the awards held in Chennai, awards were presented to 14 people, including “Visaranai” movie fame Auto Chandran, who helped a woman in Coimbatore to give birth to her baby on roadside, Bhoomika Foundation, Save Life Foundation and doctors Renuka Ramakrishnan and Gopi Nallaiyan.
- This year, a special category — Alert Being Covid Warriors — was introduced to appreciate people who put in their best during the sudden onset of a pandemic. A total of 30 Covid-19 frontline workers were presented with this award.
Former pacer Merv Hughes inducted into Australian Cricket Hall of Fame
Former pacer Merv Hughes has been inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame, the country’s board (CA).
- The 59-year-old captured 212 Test wickets at an average of 28.38 in a career spanning 53 Tests and 33 ODIs for Australia from 1985 to 1994.
- He also played 33 ODIs taking 38 wickets.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Engineering Students in Karnataka Develop Robot ‘Maya’ To Assist Customers At Banks
In a first-of-its-kind, students of KLE Technological University (KLETU) have developed a humanoid robot, specifically aimed at extending a helping hand to banking customers.
- Named Maya, the humanoid robot has been developed by students of Automation and Robotics of KLETU Prithiv Deshpande and Alwin M., along with research assistants Abhijit Sampthkrishna and Kartik Lakamanhalli under the guidance of Assistant Professors Ashwini G.K. and Sridhar Doddamani and Head of the Department Professor Arun Giriyapur.
- The robot has been developed to provide better customer service in banks. The robot has chatbot, face recognition, automatic docking after discharge and computer programmes powered by artificial intelligence which can imitate conversations such as a human using different regional languages.
- Developed under a sponsored project at a total cost of ₹ 5 lakh, Maya weighs 15 kg with battery backup of eight-10 hours with the capability of interpreting various queries. It took nearly eight months of work for the team to get Maya ready.
India’s first wetland conservation centre comes up in Chennai
Coinciding with the World Wetland Day, India on February 2,got its first specialised institution – Centre for Wetland Conservation and Management (CWCM) – in Chennai which will work as a knowledge hub for various stakeholders for conserving wetlands that occupy 4.6% of the country’s total land area.
- The CWCM has been set up as a part of the National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM), Chennai.
- It will assist the national and state/UT governments in the design and implementation of policy and regulatory frameworks, management planning, monitoring and targeted research for conservation of wetlands.
Uttarakhand sets up first arboretum for Shivalik range with 210 species of trees
A first of its kind arboretum conserving over 210 species of trees found in the Shivalik range of Himalayas was inaugurated in Uttarakhand’s Nainital district.
- Shivalik range or Outer Himalayas spreads across states and union territories like Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and seven states in the country’s northeast.
- The range has an altitude ranging between 500m and 2500m above sea level, and owing to high rainfall, varying gradient and abundant sunshine, these mountains have rich floral and faunal biodiversity.
Cicely Tyson, purposeful and pioneering actor, passes away
Pioneering US actress Cicely Tyson has passed away. He was 96.
- Tyson, the pioneering Black actor who gained an Oscar nomination for her role as the sharecropper’s wife in ‘Sounder’ & won a Tony Award in 2013.
- She touched TV viewers’ hearts in ” The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman” & won 2 Emmys for playing the 110-year-old former slave.
BOOKS & AUTHORS
‘The Little Book of Encouragement’ by Dalai Lama
Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama shares quotes and words of wisdom to deal with the new realities of the panic-stricken world along with how to combat rising extremism, polarity and climate change besides his views on Tibet in his new book.
- “The Little Book of Encouragement”, which has 130 quotes, is edited by Renuka Singh and published by Penguin Random House.