Daily Current Affairs 21 June 2018 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.
Health Minister Launched National Health Resource Repository
Union Health Minister JP Nadda has launched the National Health Resource Repository (NHRR) — the country’s first-ever national healthcare registry of authentic, standardised and updated geo-spatial data of all public and private healthcare establishments.
- The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is the project technology partner for providing data security.
- The vision of National Health Resource Repository project is to strengthen evidence-based decision making and develop a platform for citizen and provider-centric services by creating a robust, standardised and secured IT-enabled repository of India’s healthcare resources.
7th India Minerals and Metals forum inaugurated in New Delhi
7th India Minerals and Metals forum was inaugurated in New Delhi on June 21.
- The forum seeks to come up with solutions to leverage in the sector with the changing global scenario.
TN sets up Committee to Suggest Downsizing, Outsourcing
The state government of Tamil Nadu has set up a Staff Rationalisation Committee in an attempt to downsize its workforce.
- The Committee will be headed by S. Audseshiah, a retired Principal Secretary of the state government.
- It will evaluate the staff structure in various departments to identify non-essential posts as well as the categories of posts which can be outsourced or appointed through contract appointment among other relevant issue concerning administrative expenditure management in government and government agencies and make suitable recommendations.
MPEDA to launch state-of-the-art aquaculture complex at Kochi
The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) is all set to launch its multi-species Aquaculture Complex in Kochi with an aim to revolutionize fish production in the country.
- The facility spread over 8.5 acres will produce seeds/fingerlings of about seven commercially important species, which have a high export demand, including tiger shrimp, Asian seabass, pompano, cobia, genetically improved farmed Tilapia (GIFT) and mud crab.
Kolkata gets country’s first transgender OT technician
Jiya Das is the first transgender Operation Theatre (OT) technician in India. Kolkata based Jiya is working in a city-based super-specialty hospital.
- Almost one and half years back, during an event called ‘Saathrangi’, a health entrepreneur said that he will take two members of the transgender community and train them as OT technicians.
Rs 41,548 crore sanctioned as GST refunds
The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has sanctioned Rs 41,548 crore as total Goods and Services Tax (GST) refund till June 16.
- This was in compliance with the Centre’s commitment to liquidate all pending GST refunds filed till April 30.
- The second “Special Drive Refund Fortnight” to process pending GST refunds was launched from May 31 to June 16 during which Rs 6,087 crore Integrated Goods and Services Tax (IGST) refund was sanctioned.
- During the first Refund Fortnight from March 15 to 29, an amount of Rs 5350 crore was sanctioned.
Canada becomes second nation to legalize marijuana
Canadian Parliament has passed a “historic” bill legalizing the recreational use of marijuana nationwide, becoming the second country in the world to do so.
- The Bill C-45, otherwise known as the Cannabis Act, controls and regulates how the drug can be grown, distributed and sold.
- Canadians will be able to buy and consume cannabis legally as early as this September.
- Uruguay became the first country to legalize the sale of cannabis for recreational use in December 2013.
Vodafone – Idea to merge to form Vodafone Idea Ltd
Idea and Vodafone India are in process of merging their businesses, the approval for which is in final stage by the Department of Telecom.
- The combined entity would be known as “Vodafone Idea Ltd” post merger.
- Vodafone is expected to own 45.1 percent, 26 percent by Aditya Birla Group and Idea shareholders will own 28.9 in the combined entity. The merged entity will have around 430 million mobile subscribers from Day 1.
Sunil Mittal to be ICC’s Honorary Chair
Sunil Bharti Mittal, the Founder and Chairman of Bharti Enterprises, stepped down as the Chairman of International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) on June 21.
- He will now function as the Honorary Chairman of the ICC commencing July 1.
- He will be succeeded by Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever, as ICC Chairman.
- Ajay Banga, the President and CEO of MasterCard will be appointed as the ICC First Vice-Chair.
BVR Subhrahmanyam appointed J-K Chief Secy
Jammu and Kashmir Governor NN Vohra has appointed IAS officer BVR Subrahmanyam as the new Chief Secretary of the state.
- In addition, Vijay Kumar, a retired IPS officer, and BB Vyas, the current Chief Secretary of the state, has been appointed as Advisors to the Governor.
Facebook launches free version of ‘Workplace’ for NGOs
Facebook has launched a free version of its enterprise communications app ‘Workplace’ to make working better, smarter and faster for charities and non-governmental organisations.
- The App, named “Workplace for Good”, would donate work-essential mobile, video, communication and collaboration tools free of charge to organisations like World Wildlife Fund, United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) and more.
- Additionally, the app also comes integrated with tools like “OxBot” which is a jargon-busting bot that provides a link to internal sources of information, increasing accessibility options.
Microsoft acquires AI startup to fuel AI capabilities
With the aim to boost AI and machine learning capabilities, Microsoft has signed an agreement to acquire Bonsai, an artificial intelligence (AI) startup based in San Francisco.
- The acquisition will make it easier for experts with AI experience to build the machine learning model for autonomous systems of all kinds.
Accenture Ventures, Consulate General of Israel & NASSCOM launch “Scalerator” Program
In a first-of-its-kind collaboration, Accenture, the Consulate General of Israel to South India, and the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) have jointly launched ‘Scalerator’.
- Scalerator is an exclusive program that aims to enhance the collaboration between Israeli and Indian startups to create innovative solutions for global markets.
- With support from Accenture Ventures’ Open Innovation initiative, scalerator will identify growth-stage Israeli startups with deep expertise in emerging technologies — particularly cybersecurity, cloud computing, artificial intelligence, automation, the Internet of Things, blockchain and extended reality – and connect them with India’s startup community through NASSCOM’s 10,000 Startups initiative.
- Accenture Ventures will provide guidance to scalerator participants, leveraging its open innovation expertise and global reach to help startups build and bring to market innovative solutions that help address business challenges of Accenture’s Indian and global clients.
Instagram launches IGTV app to counter YouTube
Instagram has launched a new app called IGTV which is its step towards competing with YouTube to attract video creators.
- The IGTV app is available for iOS and Android. It is meant for publishers to create full-screen, vertical videos in longform.
- While it is a separate app, the IGTV channels are connected to the main Instagram account. There won’t be ads in the beginning but creators will be able to link out in the future to monetize.
EY, Microsoft launch blockchain solution for Media & Entertainment industry
EY and Microsoft has launched a blockchain solution for better content rights and royalties management.
- The solution aims to streamline the costly and time-consuming processes in entertainment rights and royalties.
- It will be first being deployed within gaming with Microsoft and its game publisher partners.
- The solution has been designed to serve any industry where intellectual property or assets are licensed to other parties and where the creators are paid royalties based on royalty agreements.
- It would increase trust and transparency between industry players, significantly reduce operational inefficiencies in the rights and royalties management process, and eliminate the need for costly manual reconciliation and partner reviews.
Russia to supply technical security equipment to India
India and Russia have decided to cooperate in area of integrated security system taking forward their decades old defence cooperation.
- For this, Russia’s NIKIRET, a subsidiary of Russian state atomic energy corporation Rosatom, and Indian engineering services firm Core Energy Systems Pvt Ltd have signed an agreement to promote the technical security equipment of NIKIRET in India.
- Under the agreement, Core will “buy technical security equipment from Nikiret and promote it in India as an integrated security solution.
- Integrated security systems are a group of technical protective means intended for organization of alarm security subsystems, monitoring of access control subsystems, monitoring of CCTV subsystems and performance of warning functions.
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
Nashik’s Vishwas Mandlik, Mumbai’s Yoga Institute win PM awards
Vishwas Mandlik of Nashik and The Yoga Institute in Mumbai are the recipients of the 2018 Prime Minister’s Award for outstanding contribution to promotion and development of yoga.
- Mandlik won the award in the category Individual – National and The Yoga Institute won in the category Organisation – National.
- The selection was done from among 186 nominations received under different categories for the year 2018.
Differently-abled attempt Guinness Record in Yoga
Around 800 differently-abled people from across India attempted to set a Guinness World Record for ‘Largest Silent Yoga Class’ in Ahmedabad on the occasion of 4th International Yoga Day.
- Participants were chosen from ten city-based organisations like Blind People’s Association (BPA), Apang Manav Mandal and Andh Kanya Prakash Gruh along with many more.
- They were trained for this occasion since May with yoga experts at the Shivanand Ashram.
Oscar-nominated Richard Alan Greenberg passes away
Richard Alan Greenberg, the Oscar-nominated effects artist and motion-graphics pioneer, who worked for movies like ‘Superman’, ‘Alien’ and ‘The World According to Garp’, died in New York. He was 71.
International Yoga Day 2018: June 21
The 4th International Yoga Day was observed across the world on June 21 in Dehradun.
- The day to raise awareness worldwide of the many benefits of practicing yoga, a physical, mental and spiritual practice.
- The word yoga originates from Yuja, a Sanskrit word which means, “to join or to unite”, symbolizing the union of body and consciousness.
- The theme for Yoga Day 2018 is “Yoga for Peace.”
- The first International Day of Yoga was observed all over the world on June 21, 2015.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi had proposed this date at the United Nations General Assembly 2014 and recognizing its universal appeal, on December 11, 2014, the United Nations declared June 21 as International Day of Yoga in 2014.
World Music Day: June 21
World Music Day is observed on June 21 every year with the aim to shed light on the importance of music.
- The day is known as Fete de la Musique after a music festival that began in France in 1982.
- On Music Day, the citizens of a city or country are allowed and urged to play music in their neighbourhoods or in public spaces.
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