Latest Current Affairs Daily Update

12th May 2021 Current Affairs in English

Important Days

India celebrates National Technology Day on 11th May

National Technology Day is celebrated on 11 May across India. This day marks the successfully tested Shakti-I nuclear missile at the Indian Army’s Pokhran Test Range in Rajasthan.

This day will be focusing on rebooting the economy through Science and Technology. It also highlights the achievements of our scientists and engineers in the field of science and technology and encourages students to embrace Science as a career option.

Every year, National Technology Day is celebrated across India on 11 May to memorize the anniversary of Shakti, the Pokhran nuclear test held on 11 May 1998.

Shakti also knows as the Pokhran Nuclear Test was the first nuclear test code-named ‘Smiling Buddha’ was carried out in May 1974.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • National Science Day is celebrated all over India on 28th February.


CBSE launches ‘Dost for Life’ mobile app

Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has launched a new mobile app for students and parents. The new app ‘Dost for Life’ is an exclusive psychological counselling app for students and parents of CBSE-affiliated schools.

The new App will simultaneously cater to students and parents from CBSE-affiliated schools in different geographies across the world.

The app will also provide students with other resource material such as suggestive course guides for after senior secondary education, tips on mental health and well being, and a ‘corona guide’ with information on daily safety protocol, learning from home and self-care.

The counselling sessions shall be provided to students of classes 9-12 by 83 volunteer counsellors and school principals.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • CBSE Chairman: Manoj Ahuja;
  • CBSE Head Office: Delhi;
  • CBSE Founded: 3 November 1962.

International News2. Former Senator Bill Nelson Sworn in as the 14th NASA Administrator

Former Senator Bill Nelson was sworn in as the 14th NASA administrator tasked with carrying out the Biden-Harris administration’s vision for the agency.

Nelson served in the U.S. Senate for 18 years from Florida and as a payload specialist on space shuttle mission 61-C in 1986.

Nelson has served in public office over four decades, first in the state legislature and U.S. Congress, then as State Treasurer.

He was elected three times to the United States Senate, representing Florida for 18 years. His committees included the breadth of government policy from defence, intelligence and foreign policy to finance commerce, and health care.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Headquarters of NASA: Washington D.C., United States.
  • NASA Founded: 1 October 1958.

Tripura Launches Auro Scholarship Programme of Sri Aurobindo Society

Education Minister of Tripura, Ratan Lal Nath launched the ‘Auro Scholarship Programme’ of Sri Aurobindo Society for all the students of the state.

Auro Scholarship Programme provides the monthly micro-scholarship to the students in order to motivate them towards achieving better learning outcomes once students achieve benchmark performance in 10-min curriculum-aligned Quizzes.

1000’s scholars of Tripura will develop into direct beneficiaries and the standard of training within the State will attain new heights.

The month-to-month micro-scholarship programme will profit the scholars in the long term.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Chief Minister of Tripura: Biplab Kumar Deb; Governor: Ramesh Bais.


Ujjwala Singhania takes over as 38th National President FICCI FLO

Ujjwala Singhania has been appointed as the National President of FICCI Ladies Organization (FLO), the oldest women-led & women-centric business chamber of Southeast Asia.

As the 38th National President of FLO Singhania will focus on empowering women by facilitating an enabling environment that promotes entrepreneurship, industry participation and economic development of women.

Under her leadership, FLO will carry out many interventions towards fostering larger contributions of women in India’s Industrial and economic growth story.

Indian-origin expert Sankar Ghosh elected to National Academy of Sciences

Sankar Ghosh, an award-winning Indian-origin immunologist, has been elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences in recognition of his “distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.

He was among the 120 newly elected members announced by the Academy. The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit institution that was established under a Congressional charter signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863.

It recognises achievement in science by election to membership and – with the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Medicine – provides science, engineering and health policy advice to the federal government and other organisations.

RBI appoints Jose J Kattoor as Executive Director

The Reserve Bank of India has appointed Jose J Kattoor as Executive Director (ED). Prior to being promoted as ED, Mr Kattoor was heading Bengaluru Regional Office of the Reserve Bank as Regional Director for Karnataka.

He will look after Human Resource Management Department, Corporate Strategy and Budget Department and Rajbhasha Department.

Mr Kattoor has, over a span of three decades, served in communication, human resource management, financial inclusion, supervision, currency management and other areas in the Reserve Bank.


Bajaj Finance gets RBI approval for prepaid payment business

Bajaj Finance is all set to join the likes of Paytm and Amazon in the prepaid payment segment with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) approving the non-bank lender’s foray with perpetual validity.

The move is part of Bajaj Finance’s broader strategy to expand its digital offerings. RBI has granted authorization to the Company for issuance and operation of semi-closed Prepaid Payment Instruments with perpetual validity.

A semi-closed PPI is effectively a digital wallet but one through which transactions can flow to merchants and establishments other than the one offering the wallet services.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Bajaj Finance Headquarters: Pune, Maharashtra;
  • Bajaj Finance CEO: Sanjiv Bajaj.


CSC, HDFC Bank launches chatbot ‘Eva’

HDFC Bank and Common Services Centres (CSCs) launched chatbot ‘Eva’ on CSCs Digital Seva Portal to support the Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs) in providing banking services for the last mile rural consumers.

This initiative will bridge the gap between India and Bharat. Urban India has been quick to learn and adapt to the digital world. Rural India has faced challenges as it has lower Internet penetration.

VLEs will learn about the products and services offered by the HDFC Bank, which will improve services to the last mile customers and enhance banking services for the last mile.

The 24×7 service will allow VLEs to access accurate information about various products, processes and resolve queries about HDFC Bank’s services.

VLEs would improve their business by learning about account opening, loan lead generation and product details.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Headquarters of HDFC Bank: Mumbai, Maharashtra;
  • MD and CEO of HDFC Bank: Sashidhar Jagdishan;
  • The tagline of HDFC Bank: We understand your world.

Ranks and Reports

NITI Aayog, Mastercard release report on Connected Commerce

The NITI Aayog has released a report titled ‘Connected Commerce: Creating a Roadmap for a Digitally Inclusive Bharat’. NITI Aayog has released the report in collaboration with Mastercard.

The report identifies the various challenges faced in accelerating digital financial inclusion in India and also provides recommendations for making digital services accessible to its 1.3 billion citizens.

The report includes strengthening the payment infrastructure to promote a level playing field for NBFCs and banks;

Digitizing registration and compliance processes and diversifying credit sources to enable growth opportunities for MSMEs;

building information-sharing systems, including a ‘fraud repository’, and ensuring that online digital commerce platforms carry warnings to alert consumers to the risk of frauds;

enabling agricultural NBFCs to access low-cost capital and deploy a ‘physical (physical + digital) model for achieving better long-term digital outcomes.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • NITI Aayog Formed: 1 January 2015.
  • NITI Aayog Headquarters: New Delhi.
  • NITI Aayog Chairperson: Narendra Modi.
  • Mastercard Headquarters: New York, United States.
  • Mastercard President: Michael Miebach.


Dr Tahera Qutbuddin 1st Indian To Win Arab World Nobel Prize

Mumbai born, Dr Tahera Qutbuddin, a professor of Arabic Literature at the University of Chicago, recently became the first person of Indian origin to win the 15th Sheikh Zayed Book Award.

The award is considered to be the Nobel Prize of the Arab world. She won the award for her latest book, “Arabic Oration – Art and Function” published by Brill Academic Publishers of Leiden in 2019.

In the book, she puts forth a comprehensive theory of Arabic literature in its foundational oral period dating the seventh and eighth centuries AD. She discusses its influence on modern-day sermons and lectures as well.

Science and Technology

SpaceX to launch ‘DOGE-1 Mission to the Moon’

Elon Musk-owned SpaceX is set to launch the “DOGE-1 Mission to the Moon”, the first-ever commercial lunar payload, paid entirely in the cryptocurrency Dogecoin.

The satellite is scheduled to be launched in the first quarter of 2022 onboard the Falcon 9 rocket. The dogecoin-funded mission is led by the Canadian company Geometric Energy Corporation (GEC).

SpaceX will carry a 40-kilogram cube satellite dubbed as DOGE-1, as rideshare on a Falcon 9 rocket.

The payload will obtain lunar-spatial intelligence from sensors and cameras on board with integrated communications and computational systems.

This launch will make DOGE the first crypto in space as well as the first meme in space.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • SpaceX founder & CEO: Elon Musk.
  • SpaceX Founded: 2002.
  • SpaceX Headquarters: California, United States of America.

ISRO develops 3 cost-effective ventilators, oxygen concentrator

The Indian Space Research Organisation’s Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), has developed three different types of ventilators and an oxygen concentrator at a time when a shortage of this critical medical equipment resulted in the deaths of many Covid-19 patients across the country.

Based on designs, features and specifications, we have named them, Prana, VaU and Svasta. All three are user-friendly, fully automated and with touch-screen specifications, meeting all safety standards.

Prana is meant to deliver respiratory gas to the patient by automated compression of an Ambu bag, Svasta is designed to work without electric power, and the VaU is a low-cost ventilator equivalent to commercially available high-end ventilators.

The VSSC has also developed a portable medical oxygen concentrator called Shwaas.  It is capable of supplying 10 litres of enriched oxygen per minute, adequate for two patients at a time.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • ISRO Chairman: K.Sivan.
  • ISRO Headquarters: Bengaluru, Karnataka.
  • ISRO established: 15 August 1969.

Books and authors

A book titled ‘Life in the Clock Tower Valley’ author by Shakoor Rather

“Life in the Clock Tower Valley” is the debut book of Press Trust of India (PTI) journalist Shakoor Rather.

The book is published by Speaking Tiger, it talks about Kashmir’s pristine past, its grievous present and always-uncertain future.

It also includes historical and political information about Kashmir as well as environmental issues that are seldom talked about.


Pakistan’s Babar Azam Wins ICC Players of the Month for April 2021

Pakistani skipper Babar Azam has been named the ICC Men’s Player of the Month for April 2021 for his consistent and stellar performances across all formats in the recently concluded series against South Africa.

Along with Babar, Australian women’s team wicketkeeper-batsman Alyssa Healy also bagged the ICC Women’s Player of The Month accolade for her incredible performances during the month of April.

The ICC Player of the Month Awards recognise and celebrate the best performances from both male and female cricketers across all forms of international cricket throughout the year.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Chairman of ICC: Greg Barclay.
  • CEO of ICC: Manu Sawhney.
  • Headquarters of ICC: Dubai, United Arab Emirates.


Paytm unveiled COVID-19 vaccine finder tool

Fintech major Paytm launched ‘COVID-19 Vaccine Finder’,  a platform to help citizens check the availability of vaccination slots on its Mini App store.

The platform will help citizens to check the availability of vaccination slots for a specific date by individually entering different pin codes or district details along with age group (18+ or 45+).

In case the slots are saturated for the near future, users can select the option for real-time alerts from Paytm once any slot is free. The automated process reduces the hassle and ordeal of refreshing the platform for new slots repeatedly.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Paytm HQ: Noida, Uttar Pradesh;
  • Paytm Founder & CEO: Vijay Shekhar Sharma;
  • Paytm Founded: 2009.

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