Latest Current Affairs Daily Update

13th & 14th Mar 2021 Current Affairs in English

Important Days

World Kidney Day observed globally on 11th March 2021

World Kidney Day is observed globally on the second Thursday of March every year. This year World Kidney Day is observed on 11th March 2021. The theme of the 2021 World Kidney day is “Living Well with Kidney Disease”.

World Kidney Day is a global campaign aimed at raising awareness of the importance of our kidneys. World Kidney Day aims to raise awareness of the importance of our kidneys to our overall health and to reduce the frequency and impact of kidney disease and its associated health problems worldwide.

National News

Govt to launch “Atmanirbhar Niveshak Mitra Portal”

The commerce and industry ministry has stated that the central government is working to develop a portal called “Atmanirbhar Niveshak Mitra Portal” for information dissemination, hand-holding, and facilitation of domestic investors.

The portal Atmanirbhar Niveshak Mitra is currently is in the testing phase. It will be launched by May 1, 2021. The ministry is also working on a webpage which will be available in regional languages and mobile app.

This portal is being developed in order to strengthen efforts to promote domestic investments. It is being developed by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).

The portal will help in providing daily updates on several things including the policies and new initiatives by the central and state governments, information regarding the approvals, licenses, clearances several schemes & incentives. It will also be providing information regarding the manufacturing clusters and land availability.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Minister of Commerce and Industry: Piyush Goyal.

PM Narendra Modi Launches Kindle Version Of Bhagavad Gita

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched the Kindle version of Swami Chidbhavananda’s ‘Bhagavad Gita’ via video conferencing. The event has been organised to commemorate the sale of over 5 lakh copies of the Swami Chidbhavanandaji’s Bhagavad Gita.

Swami Chidbhavanandaji is the founder of Sri Ramakrishna Tapovanam Ashram at Thirupparaithurai, Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu. Chidbhavananda Ji was devoted to India’s regeneration. He noted that Swami Vivekananda’s Madras lectures inspired Swami Chidbhavananda Ji to put the nation above everything else and serve the people.

Himachal CM inaugurates Swarnim International Shivratri Fair

The famous Swarnim International Shivratri Fair has begun with Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur formally launching it at the historic Paddal ground, Himachal Pradesh. Thousands of people dressed in their traditional attire participated in the procession carrying their local deities dancing all the way up to Paddal ground.

Over 150 deities participated in the ‘Jaleb’, the traditional Shobha Yatra from almost all parts of the district. Earlier, the Chief Minister participated in the Pagri Ceremony and performed Puja at Shri Raj Madhav Rai Temple.

Chief Minister felicitated the people of the State on the auspicious occasion of the International Shivratri festival, which was being celebrated this year as Swarnim International Shivratri Fair to mark glorious fifty years of Statehood.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Chief Minister of HP: Jairam Thakur; Governor of HP: Bandaru Dattatraya.

Govt launches Mera Ration Mobile App

In order to facilitate the ‘One Nation-One Ration Card’ system in the country, the government has launched ‘Mera Ration’ mobile app to benefit citizens in identifying the nearest fair price shop. This app will benefit especially those ration card holders who move to new areas for livelihoods.

The app is developed by the government in association with NIC “to facilitate various “One Nation-One Ration Card” related services among the National Food Security Act (NFSA) beneficiaries, particularly migrant beneficiaries, fair price shop dealers and other relevant stakeholders.

With the help of the app, the beneficiaries can easily check details of food grain entitlement, recent transactions and the Status of their Aadhaar seeding.

The migrant beneficiaries can also register their migration details with the help of the application. Beneficiaries can also enter their suggestions or feedback.

Union Cabinet approves Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Nidhi

The Union Cabinet has approved the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Nidhi (PMSSN), as a single non-lapsable reserve fund.

This has been approved for the share of Health from proceeds of Health and Education Cess which is levied under the Section 136-b of Finance Act, 2007.

This is a non-lapsable reserve fund for the Health in the Public Account. This fund will comprise of the proceeds from the share of health in the Health and Education Cess.

This revenue in the fund will be used for the flagship schemes of the Health Ministry including the National Health Mission, Ayushman Bharat – Health and Wellness Centres, Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana and for the emergency & disaster preparedness and responses in cases of health emergencies.

Cabinet Approves Amendments in Insurance Act 1938

The Union Cabinet has given its nod for amendments in the Insurance Act, paving way for 74 per cent foreign direct investment in the sector. Currently, the permissible FDI limit in life and general insurance stands at 49 per cent with ownership and management control with Indian.

According to sources, the Cabinet in its meeting has approval for amendments in the Insurance Act, 1938. It was in 2015 when the government hiked the FDI cap in the insurance sector from 26 per cent to 49 per cent. 

The majority of directors on the board and key management persons would be resident Indians, with at least 50 per cent of directors being independent directors, and a specified percentage of profits being retained as a general reserve.

An increase in FDI will help improve life insurance penetration in the country. Life insurance premium as a percentage of GDP is 3.6 per cent in the country, way below the global average of 7.13 per cent, and in the case of general insurance, it is even worse at 0.94 per cent of GDP, as against the world average of 2.88 per cent.

The government has earlier allowed 100 per cent foreign direct investment in insurance intermediaries.

International News

World’s Most Powerful Supercomputer Fugaku is ready for use

The Japanese scientific research institute called RIKEN and Fujitsu started developing the “Fugaku” six years ago. It is the world’s most powerful supercomputers. Fugaku has been named after an alternative name for Mount Fuji.

Now, this supercomputer is fully ready and developed in Japan and is now available for research use. This supercomputer has been developed with the aim of making the device core of the computing infrastructure of Japan.

The computer comprises 100 times the application performance of the K supercomputer.

It has been developed to implement high-resolution, large-scale and long-duration simulation.

It started development in the year 2014 as the successor to the K computer. It is built with the Fujitsu A64FX microprocessor.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Japan Capital: Tokyo.
  • Japan Currency: Japanese yen.
  • Japan Prime minister: Yoshihide Suga.

Appointments News

GoI appoints Dr. GP Samanta as new Chief Statistician of India

The Central Government has appointed Dr G P Samanta as the new Chief Statistician of India (CSI) for a period of two years.

He is India’s fourth CSI. He will replace Kshatrapati Shivaji who was holding an additional charge of the post since September 2020.

Currently, Dr Samanta was serving as an adviser in the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) Department Of Statistics and Information Management. Dr Samanta will also serve as the Secretary of the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI).

Union Minister Anurag Thakur promoted as Captain in Territorial Army

Union Minister Anurag Thakur has become the first serving MP to be appointed as Captain in the Territorial Army. Thakur has been promoted to the rank of Captain at 124 Infantry Battalion Territorial Army (Sikh).

The four-time BJP MP from Himachal Pradesh’s Hamirpur was commissioned into the Territorial Army as a Lieutenant by then Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Dalbir S Suhag TA in July 2016.

Pallav Mohapatra appointed MD & CEO of ARCIL

Asset Reconstruction Company (India) Ltd (Arcil) has announced the appointment of Pallav Mohapatra as its Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director. Prior to the appointment, Mohapatra was the MD and CEO of the Central Bank of India.

Before being elevated as MD and CEO of CBoI, he was Deputy Managing Director, Stressed Assets Management Group, State Bank of India.

Vinayak Bahuguna headed Arcil as MD and CEO for five years till June 2020. Asset Reconstruction Company (India) Ltd (Arcil), which was set up in 2002, currently has assets under management (in non-performing loans) of ₹12,000 crores.

Summits and Conferences

India Chaired the First Meeting Of BRICS CGETI

Under the chairship of India, the First Meeting of the BRICS Contact Group on Economic and Trade Issues (CGETI) was held from 9th March 2021 to 11th March 2021.

The 2021 theme of the BRICS is [email protected]: Intra BRICS Cooperation for Continuity, Consolidation, and Consensus”.

India presented the calendar of events for BRICS CGETI 2021, this includes the priority areas for deliverables, schedule and scope of the MSME roundtable conference workshop on Services Statistics, and the BRICS Trade Fair. A series of presentations on the proposed deliverables during India’s chairship under the BRICS CGETI track was made in a separate session by the concerned departments of the government of India.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • BRICS Establishment: 2009.
  • BRICS Members: Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.
  • The First BRICS Ministerial Meeting was held on 20th September 2006.

PM Modi Virtually Attends First Quad Summit 2021

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Japan Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga come together for the first QUAD Summit.

The meeting was held virtually during which the four participants will exchange views on different areas of cooperation like maintaining a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region, COVID-19, emerging and critical technologies, maritime security, and climate change.

The forum is maintained by semi-regular summits, military drills and information between member countries. The idea of QUAD was first brought up by the then Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe back in 2007. Since then the representatives from the member countries have met regularly and worked together. However, this was the first-ever meeting between the national heads of the QUAD countries.

Agreements News

IBM signs MoU with U’khand Government to introduce STEM for Girls

IBM has announced a collaboration with Samagra Sikhsha Uttarakhand, the Government of Uttarakhand’s education mission, to introduce the ‘IBM STEM for Girls’ program in 130 secondary and higher secondary schools across five districts in the state.

The collaboration is part of a three-year program between IBM and Uttarakhand State Government with the American India Foundation as the implementation partner to increase the participation of girls and women in STEM careers.

The program will advance the skills and careers of close to 25,600 students in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields.

The ‘IBM STEM for Girls’ program features a comprehensive approach that builds technical capabilities as well as life and self-actualization skills.

‘STEM for Girls’ is an IBM Corporate Social Responsibility initiative primarily aimed at improving education-to-work and career pathways for girls who are studying in Government schools.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • IBM CEO: Arvind Krishna.
  • IBM Headquarters: Armonk, New York, United States.
  • Governor of Uttarakhand: Baby Rani Maurya.
  • Uttarakhand CM: Tirath Singh Rawat.

Science and Technology

DoT Launches Online Certificate Course on 5G Technology

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has launched a new online certificate course on 5G technology to be conducted by the National Telecommunications Institute for Policy Research, Innovation and Training (NTIPRIT), which is the training institute of DoT.

The course, which will be conducted from 9 March 2021 onwards, is 36 hours long and will be conducted over a period of 12 weeks every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm. Participants will also be allowed to record the session if they happen to miss it.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Minister of Communications: Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Sports News

Mithali Raj becomes 1st Indian woman cricketer to score 10K Int’l runs

The veteran Indian women’s cricketer Mithali Raj has become the first Indian woman cricketer that has completed 10,000 international runs in all the cricket formats.

She also becomes the second woman cricketer at the international level to complete 10000 runs. She achieved the milestone of 10,000 after she hit a boundary off the Anne Bosch in 28th over of Indian innings in the ongoing third ODI match against South Africa.

She won the Arjuna Award in the year 2003 and Padma Shri in the year 2015.


Ivory Coast Prime Minister Hamed Bakayoko passes away

The incumbent Prime Minister of Ivory Coast, Hamed Bakayoko, has passed away due to cancer. He was named prime minister in July 2020 following the sudden death of his predecessor, Amadou Gon Coulibaly.

President of Ivory Coast, Alassane Ouattara, has named Patrick Achi as interim prime minister in place of Bakayoko. Patrick Achi was serving as the chief of defence staff of the country.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Ivory Coast President: Alassane Ouattara.
  • Ivory Coast Capital: Yamoussoukro.
  • Ivory Coast Currency: West African CFA franc.

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