Daily Current Affairs 31st August, 2021

Daily Current Affairs 31 August 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.

NATIONAL NEWS

Vriksharopan Abhiyan – 2021”of Coal Ministry launched
The Ministry of Coal in India launched the Vriksharopan Abhiyan 2021, as a part of the Azadi Ka Amrut Mahotsav. Pralhad Joshi, Union Minister of Coal, Mines and Parliamentary Affairs will launch the Abhiyan via video conference.

  • The coal/lignite Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) of the Ministry of Coal, Government of India has an ambitious target under the Go Greening drive to bring 2,385 hectares of land under bio-reclamation or plantation.
  • The Abhiyan is expected to give the right stimulus to the Go Greening drive and thereby connecting more than 300 plantation sites in and around coalfields in India.

1000 new Health & Wellness Centres to be opened in NE States as part of National Ayush Mission: Sarbananda Sonowal
Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and AYUSH, Sarbananda Sonowal announced a slew of major initiatives planned to boost the traditional medicinal practices in the North-Eastern states at a Conference of Ayush and Health Ministers of North Eastern states in Guwahati.

  • The Union Minister announced that as many as 1000 new Health & Wellness Centres (HWC), as part of the National Ayush Mission (NAM) Scheme, will be opened in the North Eastern states for growth and development of Ayush systems. The aim of these centres is to provide a holistic wellness model based on principles of Ayush systems of medicine. A total of 12,500 HWC are to be operationalised in the country.
  • Sonowal also announced that a new Ayurvedic College will come up at Dudhnoi in Goalpara district of Assam with a Central allocation of Rs.70 crore under NAM support in order to boost the education and training of Ayush medicinal experts in North East.

PM Modi inaugurates renovated Jallianwala Bagh memorial complex in Punjab
Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually inaugurated the renovated complex of Jallianwala Bagh memorial.

  • Museum galleries have been developed at the memorial and the event showcased multiple development initiatives taken by the government to upgrade the complex.
  • They showcase the historical value of events that unfolded in Punjab during that period, with the fusion of audio-visual technology, including projection mapping and 3D representation, as well as art and sculptural installations.

MeitY Startup Hub collaborates with Paytm to support deep-tech startups
Digital payments and financial services firm Paytm said it has signed an agreement with IT ministry’s startup hub to scale deep-tech startups by providing access to platform, knowledge series, experts, resources, and larger community of stakeholders.

  • The collaboration also focuses on fostering partnerships with incubators, accelerators, investors, offering a startup toolkit to solve payments, distribution and growth challenges for early stage startups.


INTERNATIONAL NEWS

India extends up to a million USD for climate resilient agriculture in Zimbabwe
The Government of India has contributed almost USD one million to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) in Zimbabwe to help affected populations tackle climate shocks.

  • The contribution, provided through the India-UN Development Partnership Fund, will be used to assist more than 5200 smallholder farmers in Chiredzi and Mangwe districts.
  • Working alongside partners, WFP Zimbabwe will provide expertise through its Smallholder Agricultural Market Support (SAMS) programme, to strengthen the resilience and capacity of selected smallholder farmers. The project will promote the cultivation of drought-tolerant small grains and legumes – reducing the negative effects of recurring droughts in Zimbabwe.


BANKING & FINANCE

PhonePe receives insurance broking licence from Irdai
Payments major PhonePe has received an insurance broking licence from Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai), the Bengaluru-based company.

  • Now, with this new ‘direct broking’ licence, PhonePe can distribute insurance products from all insurance companies in India.
  • The new broking licence will also allow PhonePe to start offering personalized product recommendations to its over 300 million users, and offering a much more diverse portfolio of insurance products for Indian consumers.

Max Life Partners with BillDesk to Enable Safe and Secure E-mandate for Premium Payments
Max Life Insurance Company Ltd has enabled a safe and secure E-mandate process on premium payments for its customers in partnership with BillDesk, a payment gateway solutions provider.

  • With this, Max Life becomes the first life insurer to extend the facility of E-mandate for recurring premium payment options to its customers.
  • This will allow Max Life customers to choose the maximum amount through E-mandate for longer tenure and have greater control over the recurring transactions.

SBI Report: India’s GDP Likely to Grow by 18.5% in April-June Quarter This Fiscal
The country’s gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to grow at around 18.5 per cent with an upward bias in the first quarter of the current financial year, according to SBI research report Ecowrap.

  • This estimate is lower than the Reserve Bank of India’s GDP growth projection of 21.4 per cent for the April-June quarter.
  • Based on our ‘Nowcasting’ model, the forecasted GDP growth for Q1 FY22 would be around 18.5 per cent (with upward bias), the report said. Higher growth in the second quarter of 2022, or Q1 FY22 is mainly on account of a low base.

RBI extends PIDF scheme to street vendors covered under PM SVANidhi in tier 1, 2 centres
Reserve Bank extended the scheme for encouraging deployment of Point of Sale (PoS) infrastructure to street vendors covered under the PM SVANidhi programme in tier 1 and 2 centres.

  • The Payments Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) scheme, with a corpus of Rs 345 crore, envisages creating 30 lakh new touch points every year for digital payments in tier-3 to tier-6 centres.
  • The scheme, operationalised in January this year, has now been extended to select street vendors in tier 1 and 2 centres


BUSINESS & ECONOMY

India’s exports to ASEAN estimated at USD 46 billion in FY22
Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Anupriya Patel said that India is expected to export USD 46 billion to ASEAN in the financial year 2022.

  • Patel inaugurated the “India-ASEAN Engineering Partnership Summit” organised by the Engineering Exports Promotion Council (EEPC) with support from the Ministry of External Affairs and the Department of Commerce.
  • Both India and ASEAN have large share of skilled population, robust service and manufacturing sectors and there are many complementary sectors and products available for greater cooperation. With a combined economy of approx. USD 5.8 trillion, there is significant potential for enhancing trade and investment partnership between India and ASEAN.

India’s Data Centre Industry Capacity to Double by 2023 to 1,008 MW: Report
The capacity of data centre industry is expected to double by 2023 to over 1,000 MW to meet the rising demand amid sharp growth in digitalisation, according to property consultant JLL. The industry’s capacity is expected to double from 499 MW in January-June 2021 to 1,008 MW by 2023, it added. MW indicates IT design power load.

  • The capacity expansion is “driven by strong digitalisation, rising cloud adoption and ambitious growth plans of data centre operators.
  • JLL released its ‘H1 2021 India Data Centre Market Update’. Stating that acceleration of digitalisation has forced enterprises to scale up their IT infrastructure, the consultant said a strong demand for co-location/cloud facilities, which offer scalability, security, and connectivity at lower costs, has been witnessed across India.


SPORTS

Stuart Binny announces retirement from first class and International cricket
India all-rounder Stuart Binny, who owns the record of the best bowling figures in ODI format, announced his retirement from first class and international cricket.

  • The 37-year-old Binny began his career with his state Karnataka and represented India in six Tests, 14 ODIs and three Twenty20 Internationals.
  • He had bettered the record of his compatriot Anil Kumble, who had also taken a six-wicket haul against the West Indies in 1993 but had conceded 12 runs.

Tata Motors, Wrestling Federation Extend Contract to Go for Gold at Paris Olympics 2024
Tata Motors and the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) strengthened their long-term partnership with the launch of an initiative to win a gold medal in the next edition of Olympics. The initiative, ‘Quest for Gold at Paris Olympics 2024′, is a holistic development programme with the singular objective to win the coveted gold medal at the next Olympics.

  • As part of this initiative, WFI, with support from Tata Motors, will focus on the growth, progress and advancement of both men and women wrestlers, across age groups, by providing access to the right infrastructure, platform, opportunities and security.


APPOINTMENTS

In a First, 9 Supreme Court Judges, Including 3 Women, Take Oath in One Go
Nine new judges, including three women, were administered oath of office as judges of the Supreme Court, taking its strength to 33. It is for the first time in the history of the apex court that nine judges took oath of office at one go.

  • Chief Justice of India N V Ramana administered the oath of office to the new judges in a swearing-in ceremony held in the auditorium of the Supreme Court’s additional building complex.

Names of 9 new Supreme Court Judges
1) Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka
2) Justice Vikram Nath
3) Justice Jitendra Kumar Maheshwari
4) Justice Hima Kohli
5) Justice B V Nagarathna.
6) Justice C T Ravikumar
7) Justice M M Sundresh
8) Justice Bela M Trivedi
9) Justice P S Narasimha
Three out of these nine new judges — Justices Nath, Nagarathna and Narasimha — are also in line to become the CJI.

Pankaj Kumar Singh appointed as new BSF director general
Pankaj Kumar Singh, a 1988-batch Indian Police Service officer, was appointed as director general of the country’s largest border guarding force BSF.

  • Singh is a Rajasthan cadre officer and is presently serving as the special director general (DG) of the force that guards over 6,300 km of the Indian fronts with Pakistan and Bangladesh.
  • He will take charge on August 31 after the retirement of IPS officer and ITBP DG S S Deswal, who is holding additional charge of the BSF DG after the tenure of Gujarat cadre officer Rakesh Asthana ended in July.

Indian Idol Winner Pawandeep Rajan Becomes Uttarakhand’s Brand Ambassador for Art, Tourism, Culture
Indian Idol 12 winner Pawandeep Rajan was made Uttarakhand’s brand ambassador for art, tourism, and culture.

  • Twenty-three-year-old Rajan, who won the 12th edition of the music reality show Indian Idol on August 15, is a resident of Champawat in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand.

Govt approves extension of terms of three MD-CEOs, 10 EDs of PSU banks
The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has accepted the proposal of the Department of Financial Services (DFS) to extend the tenure of three managing directors and chief executive officers (MDs and CEOs) and ten executive directors (EDs) of public sector banks.

  • The ACC has approved the extension of tenure of S S Mallikarjuna Rao, MD and CEO of Punjab National Bank, until January 31, 2022, when he is due for superannuation.The appointments panel has also approved a two-year extension for Atul Kumar Goel, MD and CEO of UCO Bank as well as A S Rajeev, MD and CEO of Bank of Maharashtra.
  • The ACC has also approved a two-year extension to Bank of Baroda ED Ajay K Khurana, ED of Canara Bank A Manimekhalai and P R Rajagopal, Bank of India ED. Terms of Sanjay Kumar and Vijay Dube (Punjab National Bank), Gopal Singh Gusain and Manas Ranjan Biswal (Union Bank of India), Vikramaditya Singh Khichi (Bank of Baroda), Shenoy Vishwanath Vittal (Indian Bank), and Alok Srivastava (Central Bank of India) as EDs have been approved for an extension until their age of superannuation.
  • The DFS, in a letter to DoPT, had also suggested extending the term of Shanti Lal Jain, the former ED of Bank of Baroda for two years. However, earlier this month, Jain was appointed the MD and CEO of Indian Bank for a period of three years.


SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Sports Minister Anurag Singh Thakur launches FIT India Mobile Application
To celebrate the second anniversary of Fit India Movement and as part of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Anurag Singh Thakur launched the Fit India Mobile Application.

  • The Fit India App is available on both Android and iOS platforms and has been developed in such a way that it works even on basic smartphones.
  • This mobile application will help monitor fitness and through it an attempt has been made to show that fitness is easy.
  • Currently, the Fit India Movement is also conducting Fit India Freedom Run 2.0 in celebration of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav to celebrate and commemorate 75 years of India’s Independence.


OBITUARIES

Renowned coach Vasudev Paranjape passes away
Vasudev, alias Vasoo, Paranjape – a former First Class cricketer who mentored numerous greats of the game – passed away at his home. He was 82.

  • Paranjape’s career as a cricketer was restricted to 29 appearance for Mumbai from 1956 to 1970. But it was his great cricketing acumen, ability to mentor cricketers and an uncanny knack to motivate young and veterans alike that elevated him into the stature of one of the greatest guides of the game in Indian cricket.
  • He was the coach of India Under-19 for the inaugural Youth World Cup in 1988, with the squad including the likes of M. Senthilnathan, Pravin Amre, Nayan Mongia, Narendra Hirwani, Venkatapathy Raju and Subroto Banerjee.

Legendary actor Ed Asner passes away at 91
Seven-time Emmy-winning actor Ed Asner died at the age of 91.

  • He won seven – five for portraying Lou Grant (three as Supporting Actor in a Comedy Television Series on ‘The Mary Tyler Moore Show’ and two as Lead Actor in a Dramatic Television Series on spin-off ‘Lou Grant’).
  • His other Emmys were for performances in two television drama series: ‘Rich Man, Poor Man’ (1976), where he won for Outstanding Lead Actor for a Single Performance in a TV series, and ‘Roots’ (1977), for which he won for Outstanding Single Performance by a Supporting Actor in a TV series.
  • Asner also served two terms as president of the Screen Actors Guild from 1981-85 and sparred often with Charlton Heston, a noted conservative who preceded him as head of the guild. He received the SAG Life Achievement Award in 2002, according to The Hollywood Reporter.


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