Daily Current Affairs 8 July 2021 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
Govt sets up 25-member development council for cement industry
The government has set up a 25-member development council for cement industry under Dalmia Bharat Group CMD Puneet Dalmia which will suggest ways to eliminate waste, obtain maximum production, improve quality, reduce costs and promote standardization of products.
- The council would also work for standardization of accounting and costing methods and practice; and promoting the adoption of measures for increasing the productivity of labour, including measures for securing safer and better working conditions.
Department of Public Enterprises reallocated to Finance Ministry
The government has merged the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) with the Finance Ministry to give it a better control over state-owned firms and facilitate its ambitious privatisation programme.
- Finance Ministry will now have six departments while DPE’s hereto parent ministry, the Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises will now be called the Ministry of Heavy Industries.
- Previously, the Disinvestment Ministry – created under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government – was merged with the Finance Ministry and is now a department under it.
- Also, Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) was abolished and administration of foreign investments was given to the Finance Ministry (FinMin).
Assam government launches scheme to incentives production of orthodox and specialty tea
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma ceremonially launched Assam Tea Industries Special Incentive Scheme (ATISIS) to incentives the production of Orthodox and specialty tea.
- ATISIS is aimed at boosting the production of orthodox or specialty tea in the state by extending incentives to the tea gardens.
- Under the scheme, the government will provide interest subvention of 3% on the working capital loan per annum subject to a maximum of Rs. 20 lakhs apart from, orthodox or specialty tea production subsidy of Rs. 7 per kg, 25% subsidy for Orthodox & Specialty Tea Unit for Plant & Machinery subject to a maximum of Rs. 30 lakhs and Agricultural Income Tax Holiday for 3 years.
DPIIT Sets Up 9-member Panel To Check Digital Monopolies
The Union commerce ministry announced the constitution of a nine-member advisory Committee to curb the digital monopolies in the country.
- The advisory committee will be headed by RS Sharma, CEO of National Health Authority, and will have Nandan Nilekani, co-founder and non-executive Chairman, Infosys; Adil Zainulbhai, QCI chief; Anjali Bansal, founder of Avaana Capital; Arvind Gupta, co-founder of Digital India Foundation; Dilip Asbe, head of National Payments Corporation of India; Suresh Sethi, head of National Securities Depository; Praveen Khandelwal, chief of the Confederation of All India Traders; and Kumar Rajagopalan, CEO of the Retailers Association of India, as its advisory members.
India’s second largest cricket stadium to be constructed in Jaipur
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has given a financial grant of Rs 100 crore to the Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) to build India’s second-largest stadium in Jaipur.
- The construction work for the first phase of the stadium is likely to take 24 to 30 months. The proposed stadium will have a 75,000 spectator capacity.
- An amount of about Rs 290 crore has been estimated in the construction work.
World’s first 3D-printed school opens in Africa
Leveraging technology to tackle the shortage of schools in the continent, African affordable housing venture called 14Trees has erected the world’s first 3D-printed school in the country of Malawi.
- The design provides space that students in the region did not have privelege to with facilities for teaching and learning both inside and outside of the classroom.
- The school was built from scratch in the Salima district of Malawi. It took 18 hours to erect the walls. The 3D-printed school was then relocated to a village community in the Yambe zone.
BANKING & FINANCE
PayU partners with WooCommerce to accelerate digitalization for SMBs
PayU, India’s online payment solutions provider, has partnered with WooCommerce, an open-source, customizable e-commerce platform, to enable WooCommerce merchants with digital payments infrastructure, and end-to-end digitalization of business processes.
- The partnership will offer merchants exclusive pricing on transactions, no hidden charges, and contactless payment solutions to scale growth and profitability.
Razorpay, Mastercard launch solution for recurring payments
Fintech unicorn Razorpay and payments technology major Mastercard have launched Mandate HQ, a platform, which the companies said is a safe and secure recurring payment interface.
- To further the adoption of digital payments in a safe and secure manner, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has issued a framework for processing of e-mandates on recurring online transactions.
- RBI has made AFA (Additional Factor of Authentication) mandatory for all recurring transactions below Rs 5000 on debit cards, credit cards, even UPI and other Prepaid Payment Instruments (PPIs). All stakeholders are required to ensure full compliance with the framework by September 30, 2021.
FlexiLoans, GooglePay partner to provide instant loans to SMEs
MSME focused digital lending platform FlexiLoans.com announces its collaboration with Google Pay to offer flexible loans to their merchant base.
- The collaboration will address the credit gap by offering instant loans to small merchants and entrepreneurs across India that are unable to access formal credit.
- FlexiLoans is aiming at disbursing loans to over 50,000 small businesses in the next 12 months from this collaboration. FlexiLoans.com is the first lender to go live on the Google Pay platform.
HDFC Bank, Creditas Solutions partner to offer Digital Self-service Credit Portal
HDFC Bank has partnered with Creditas Solutions to offer a guided and customised debt management solution for its loan and credit card customers.
- The platform enables customers to access their credit account information in real-time, on any device, and also streamline and enable the repayment process, allowing further flexibility to pay when and how they choose.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Tech Mahindra partners with StaTwig to implement ‘VaccineLedger’ globally
IT major Tech Mahindra said it has partnered with StaTwig, a Singapore and Hyderabad-based digital supply chain solution provider, to implement vaccine traceability platform ‘VaccineLedger’ globally.
- ‘VaccineLedger’ is an open source platform and designed to perform end-to-end traceability at vial level for vaccines in the global supply chain. It prevents the need of replacing the existing system, therefore, removing the barriers of adoption.
Fitch cuts India growth forecast to 10% from 12.8% due to slower recovery, weaker banking sector outlook
Fitch Ratings lowered its expectations of India’s growth to 10% for the ongoing fiscal, down from 12.8% in March, as the second wave-induced lockdowns slowed the recovery and negatively affected banking sector prospects.
- The renewed restrictions had slowed recovery efforts and left banks with a moderately worse outlook for business and revenue generation in FY22, the agency said in a report.
Fiscal deficit improves to 8.2% of FY22 target in May
India’s fiscal deficit at the end of May came in at 8.2% of the budgeted estimate for FY22 as against 59% in the same period last year, on the back of better revenues and lower subsidy pay out, according to official data released.
- Fiscal deficit in April-May stood at ₹1.23 lakh crore, data showed.
- Higher revenues in these two months coupled with lower expenditure aided in limiting the deficit, experts said.
NTPC, ONGC to boost development of offshore wind energy
State-run power giant NTPC and upstream oil firm ONGC have planned to boost the development of offshore wind energy in India. Earlier in May last year, NTPC and ONGC had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to accelerate their footprint in the renewable energy space.
- Now, the MoU assumes significance in view of, almost doubling the target of renewable energy capacity addition to 60GW by 2032 by NTPC last month.
- Moreover, NTPC has also shown its intention to bring an initial public offer of its arm NTPC Renewable Energy Ltd to raise funds for achieving 60 GW clean energy capacity by 2032 which requires about Rs 2.5 lakh crore investment.
Nihal Sarin wins Silver Lake Open chess tournament
Nihal Sarin won the Silver Lake Open chess tournament in Serbia. The third-seeded Indian came on top of the field with eight points from nine rounds.
- In the final round, he defeated Branko Damljanovic of the host. The second and third places were also taken by Indians, as Raunak Sadhwani and Abhimanyu Puranik scored seven points each.
James Anderson claims 1,000th wicket of first-class career
James Anderson reached a remarkable milestone in his career as he scalped his 1,000th first-class wicket during Lancashire’s County Championship match against Kent at the Old Trafford Stadium.
- He became the 14th player and just the fifth seamer to reach 1,000 first-class wickets this century.
- The 38-year-old, who is already the most prolific pacer in the history of Test cricket with 617 wickets, picked up his landmark wicket when he dismissed Heino Kuhn with a caught behind by wicketkeeper Dane Vilas.
Neha Parikh appointed new CEO of crowd-sourced navigation app Waze
Neha Parikh, the former Indian-American president of the travel website Hotwire, has been appointed as the new CEO of Waze, a crowd-sourced navigation app and a subsidiary of tech giant Google.
- Neha, 41, a board member of the online used car retailer Carvana, replaced Noam Bardin, who stepped down in November as the CEO after leading the Israeli company for 12 years.
Bengaluru airport inducted into ACI DG’s Roll of Excellence
Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru has been inducted into the Airports Council International (ACI) director general’s Roll of Excellence for the year 2020 for consistently delivering superior customer service.
- The Airport has won multiple ACI Airport Service Quality awards over a five-year period during the past 10 years, and is one of only six airports worldwide that will receive the recognition this year.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
China launches new Fengyun-3E meteorological satellite
China has launched the new Fengyun-3E (FY-3E) meteorological satellite from the SLS-2 launch site at China’s Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre.The satellite is launched onboard the Long March-4C carrier rocket, which placed it into its planned orbit.
- Equipped with 11 remote sensing payloads, the FY-3E is part of the Fengyun-3 series of meteorological satellites.The FY-3E is the fifth in the series and the third operational satellite.
- The satellite is designed to serve for eight years. It will provide atmospheric temperature, humidity, and other meteorological related parameters, which will contribute to China’s weather forecast capacity.
Swami Prakashananda, former head of Sivagiri Mutt in Varkala, passes away
Spiritual leader and former head of Varkala Sivagiri Mutt, Swami Prakashananda passed away at the age of 99.
- A resourceful administrator and a Vedic scholar par excellence, Prakashananda is known for his invaluable contributions to the growth of Sivagiri Mutt as a pilgrim centre of international repute and a traditional seat of spiritual enlightenment.
- He was the trust general secretary for nine years from 1970. He also served as the trust president thrice
Virbhadra Singh, 6-Time Himachal Pradesh CM, passes away
Former Himachal Pradesh chief minister and senior Congress leader Virbhadra Singh died in Shimla after a prolonged illness. He was 87.
- The nine-time MLA and five-time MP, Mr Singh served as Himachal Pradesh’s chief minister for six times.
- Singh was first elected to Lok Sabha in 1962, in all he was a five-time MP. He served as Minister of State for Industries, between 1982 to 1983 and Union Minister of Steel, between 2009 to 2011 and Union Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) from between 2011 to 2012. He also remained as Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee president in years 1977, 1979, 1980 and 2012.
Haiti’s President Jovenel Moïse passee away
Haitian President Jovenel Moïse, who took office in February 2017, was assassinated after an attack amid deepening political and economic stability and a spike in gang violence in the country.
- Moïse, who was 53, had been demanding to serve out the remainder of the year and threatening to amend the Constitution to give himself more power.
BOOKS & AUTHORS
‘The Fourth Lion: Essays For Gopalkrishna Gandhi’ book by Venu Madhav Govindu and Srinath Raghavan
A book titled ‘The Fourth Lion: Essays for Gopalkrishna Gandhi’ co-written by Venu Madhav Govindu and Srinath Raghavan has been released recently.
- The book consists of twenty-six essays contributed by individuals drawn from various walks of life and from across the globe.
“Operation Khukri” book by Major General Rajpal Punia & Damini Punia
The book titled “Operation Khukri” book by Major General Rajpal Punia & Damini Punia is slated to release on July 15.
- Operation Khukri: The untold story of Indian Army’s bravest peacekeeping mission abroad, published by Penguin Random House India (PRHI), is the story of the Indian Army’s successful rescue mission of over 200 India peacekeepers who were sent to Sierra Leone in year 2000 by United Nations to help the government there in tackling Revolutionary United Front (RUF), a rebel group.