Current Affairs in English

17th and 18th Jan 2022 Current Affairs in English

National

PM Narendra Modi declares January 16 as ‘National Startup Day’

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has declared to mark 16th  January as ‘National Start-up Day’. The announcement was made by PM Modi on January 15, 2022, via video conferencing during a week-long event “Celebrating Innovation Ecosystem” as a part of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav. The Prime Minister interacted with more than 150 startups across different sectors, during the event.

The startups, categorized under six groups, gave presentations to the Prime Minister on six themes — ‘growing from roots, ‘nudging the DNA’, ‘from local to global, ‘technology of future’, ‘building champions in manufacturing’ and ‘sustainable development.

The Prime Minister was of the view Indian startups can easily make it to the global stage and reach other countries and told the young entrepreneurs: “Don’t just keep your dreams local, make them global. Remember this mantra — let’s Innovate for India, innovate from India”.

World’s largest Khadi National Flag displayed at Longewala

The world’s largest national flag, made of Khadi fabric was put to display to celebrate “Army Day” on January 15, 2022. It was displayed at Longewala, along the India – Pakistan Border in Jaisalmer.

Longewala was the center stage of the historic battle of 1971 between India and Pakistan. It will be the fifth public display of the Khadi flag. 70 khadi artisans prepared this flag in 49 days. Its making has created about 3500 man-hours of additional work for Khadi artisans and allied workers.

The Monumental National Flag is 225 feet long and 150 feet wide. It is approximately 1400 kgs in weight. 4500 meters of hand-woven, hand-spun, Khadi cotton bunting has been used to make the flag. It covers an area of 33, 750 square feet.  The Ashok Chakra in the flag has a diameter of 30 feet.

Kerala’s Kumbalanghi to be India’s first sanitary-napkin free village

Kerala’s Kumbalanghi is set to become the country’s first sanitary napkin-free panchayat. This move is a part of the ‘Avalkayi’ initiative, which is being implemented in the Ernakulam parliamentary constituency, in association with the “Thingal Scheme” of HLL Management Academy and Indian Oil Corporation.

Under this initiative, menstrual cups will be distributed to women aged 18 and above in Kumbalangi village. 5000 menstrual cups will be distributed under it. In the same event, Governor will also declare Kumbalangi village as a model village.

The model village project is implemented as a part of ‘Pradhan Mantri Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (PM-SAGY)’. A new tourist information center will also be set up in the village.

Kumbalangi is an island village, located on the outskirts of Kochi city of Kerala. It is a major tourist attraction and is famous for the Chinese fishing nets. It is situated amidst backwaters, about 12 km from the city center. The village is also the first eco-tourism village in India.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Kerala Governor: Arif Mohammad Khan;
  • Kerala Capital: Thiruvananthapuram;
  • Kerala Chief Minister: Pinarayi Vijayan.

Appointments

Shersingh B Khyalia appointed as CEO of Adani Power

The Board of Directors of Adani Power Limited (APL), a subsidiary of Adani Group, approved the appointment of Shersingh B Khyalia as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Adani Powers with effect from 11th January 2022. He is a Chartered Accountant, who has served as the Managing Director in Gujarat Power Corporation.

Earlier, Khyalia has worked as Managing Director in Gujarat Power Corporation, where he got experience in the Renewable Power Sector especially the development of Ultra Mega Renewable Parks.

Banking

RBI released Annual Report of Ombudsman Schemes, 2020-21

Reserve Bank of India has released the Annual Report of the Ombudsman Schemes for 2020-21, which has been prepared for the 9-month period (July 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021) in alignment with the change in the Financial Year of RBI from ‘July – June’ to ‘April – March’ with effect from July 1, 2020.

The Annual Report covers the activities under the Banking Ombudsman Scheme, 2006 (BOS), the Ombudsman Scheme for Non-Banking Financial Companies, 2018 (OSNBFC), and the Ombudsman Scheme for Digital Transactions, 2019 (OSDT).

The volume of complaints received under all the 3 Ombudsman Schemes increased by 22.27 percent on an annualized basis and stood at 3,03,107.

The complaints received at BOS from July 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021, stood at 2,73,204. The complaints received at OSNBFCs stood at 26,957 during July 1, 2020-March 31, 2021. The number of complaints received at the OSDT rose to 2,946 from July 1, 2020-March 31, 2021.

RBI data further highlights that Chandigarh received the maximum complaints during the same period. The total number of complaints stands at 28019. It accounts for 10.26 percent of the total complaints.

Chandigarh is followed by Kanpur with 21,168 complaints and New Delhi with 18,767 complaints. Kanpur accounts for 7.75 percent and Delhi accounts for 6.87 percent of the total complaints.

Business

Yes Mutual Fund renamed as White Oak Capital Mutual Fund

The name of YES Asset Management has been rechristened as Whiteoak Capital Asset Management and therefore the name of YES Mutual Fund has been changed to Whiteoak Capital Mutual Fund.

The change in the names is effective from January 12, 2022. White Oak got the license to run a mutual fund. White Oak Capital group provides investment management and advisory services for equity assets of over Rs 42,000 crore.

In November 2021, White Oak Capital Group, through its subsidiary, GPL Finance, and Investments, acquired the mutual fund business, Yes Asset Management, of Yes Bank. The White Oak Capital group provides investment management and advisory services for Indian equity investors.

Defence

Defence Ministry sets up Raksha Pension Shikayat Nivaran Portal

The Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh has set up an online Raksha Pension Shikayat Nivaran Portal to resolve pension-related grievances of ex-servicemen (ESM) and their dependents.

The portal will allow them to lodge grievances directly with the Department of Ex-Servicemen Welfare (DESW), he stated on the occasion of Armed Forces Veterans Day.

The minister also announced that the DESW has allotted Rs 320 crore to Armed Forces Flag Day Fund (AFFDF) to clear all backlog of pending applications for welfare schemes, especially education and marriage grants for widows or dependent children of ESM.

The Minister also stated that the Directorate General of Resettlement has issued 22,278 job letters—including 7,898 job letters to freshly retired/first-time entrants—to civil life ESMs in the government sector/PSUs/banks and private sector during the year April 2021-December 2021.

Indian Navy and Russian Navy conducts PASSEX Exercise in the Arabian Sea

Indian Navy and Russian Navy undertook PASSEX exercises at the port of Cochin, in the Arabian Sea. The Indian Navy’s indigenously designed and built guided-missile destroyer, INS Kochi, took part in the exercise. Russian Federation Navy was represented by RFS Admiral Tributes.

These exercises are aimed at enhancing interoperability, improving understanding and imbibing best practices between both the friendly navies, and this will involve advanced surface and anti-submarine warfare exercises, weapon firings, seamanship exercises, and helicopter operations, Navy officials said, adding that these exercises are conducted regularly with units of friendly foreign navies, whilst visiting each other’s ports or during a rendezvous at sea.

Summits and Conferences

IAMAI organizes 16th India Digital Summit 2022

Union Minister of Commerce & Industry, Piyush Goyal virtually addressed the 16th India Digital Summit, 2022. The two-day virtual event was organized on January 11 and 12, 2022 by the Internet And Mobile Association of India (IAMAI). The theme of the summit was “Supercharging Startups”.

India Digital Summit is the oldest event of the digital industry in India. During the event, the Minister unveiled ‘LEAP’ as the way forward to further strengthen our Startups ecosystem. LEAP stands for “Leverage, Encourage, Access & Promote”.

Awards

Former West Indies Cricketer Clive Lloyd Receives Knighthood

Former West Indies Captain Clive Lloyd received Knighthood from Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge at Windsor Castle, for his services towards the game of cricket.

On the same day, England’s world cup-winning captain Eoin Morgan was awarded CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) by Prince William for his services towards the game of cricket.

The CBE is the highest-ranking Order of the British Empire award, followed by OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) and then MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire).

A knighthood is a title that is given to a man by a British king or queen for his achievements or his service to his country. A man who has been given a knighthood can put ‘Sir’ in front of his name instead of ‘ Mr’.

Science and Technology

Jitendra Singh launched AI-driven Start-Up for Water Purification by IIT alumni

Union Minister of State (I/C) Science & Technology Dr. Jitendra Singh has launched Artificial Intelligence (AI) driven Start-Up by Indian Institute Technology (IIT) alumni for water purification through innovative technology with financial support from Technology Development Board (TDB).

The facility aims to provide clean drinking water at a price much lesser than the market price. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was also signed between TDB, a statutory body of the Department of S&T, and Swajal Water Private Limited.

The Gurugram based company’s patented system, ‘Clairvoyant’ uses artificial intelligence to optimize purification systems and predict future breakdowns.

Sports

Lakshya Sen defeats Loh Kean Yew to win maiden Super 500 title

Indian badminton player Lakshya Sen has defeated World Champion Loh Kean Yew of Singapore, in the men’s singles final of India Open 2022 to secure his maiden Super 500 title.

The 20-year-old Sen gained victory over Yew in straight games 24-22, 21-17. The 2022 India Open (badminton), officially Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2022, was held at the K. D. Jadhav Indoor Hall in New Delhi, India, from 11 to 16 January 2022.

List of Winners of 2022 India Open (badminton):

CategoryWinners
Men’s SingleLakshya Sen (India)
Women’s SingleBusanan Ongbamrungphan (Thailand)
Men’s DoubleChirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy (India)
Women’s DoubleBenyapa Aimsaard and Nuntakarn Aimsaard (Thailand)
Mixed DoubleTerry Hee and Tan Wei Han (Singapore)

Goalkeeper Savita Punia named captain of India Women’s Hockey team

Goalkeeper Savita Punia will lead India at the upcoming women’s Asia Cup in Muscat as Hockey India named a strong 18-member squad for the event, including 16 players that featured at the Tokyo Olympics.

Since regular skipper Rani Rampal is recovering from an injury in Bengaluru, Savita will lead the side in the tournament, which is scheduled to be held between January 21-28. Indian women are the defending champions.

Seven other teams competing at the Women’s Hockey Asia Cup 2022 are China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, and Thailand.

Tasnim Mir became the World No 1 in Badminton U-19 Girls Singles

Tasnim Mir became the first Indian to grab World no 1 in Under-19 (U-19) Girls Singles category with 10,810 points in the latest Badminton World Federation (BWF) Junior rankings. She is followed by Mariia Golubeva from Russia and Lucia Rodriguez from Spain.

In 2021, she won 3 Junior International Tournaments held in Bulgaria, France, and Belgium, which helped her climb up for the No.1 position. The World No.1 position in Boy’s Singles is shared by Lakshya Sen, Siril Verma, and Aditya Joshi.

Kohli quits as India’s Test captain after seven years 2022

Virat Kohli has stepped down as the Test captain of the Indian national cricket team after seven years. He first led the national side in Test cricket in 2014 against Australia. He guided the team to an unprecedented back-to-back Test series wins Down Under.

Kohli also thanked former head coach Ravi Shastri and former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni in his statement. In 2021, India also finished as the runners-up in the inaugural ICC World Test Championship.

Kohli had recently stepped down as India’s T20I captain and was subsequently removed as the ODI captain ahead of the South Africa tour. India also became a top-ranked Test side in the world.

Obituary

Legendary Kathak dancer Pandit Birju Maharaj passes away

Legendary Kathak dancer, Pandit Birju Maharaj has passed away at the age of 83. A recipient of the country’s second-highest civilian award, Padma Vibhushan, he was fondly called Pandit-Ji or Maharaj-Ji by his disciples and legions of followers and was one of India’s best-known artists.

Birju Maharaj was a descendant of the Maharaj family of Kathak dancers, which includes his two uncles, Shambhu Maharaj and Lachhu Maharaj, and his father and guru, Acchan Maharaj. Birju Maharaj was also a singer par excellence, having command over Thumri, Dadra, Bhajan, and Ghazal.


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