Latest Current Affairs Daily Update

29th and 30th Dec 2021 Current Affairs Updates in English

National

Tamil Nadu CM launched ‘Meendum Manjappai’ scheme

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin has launched the ‘Meendum Manjappai’ scheme to promote the use of cloth bags by the public and discourage the use of plastic bags.

This awareness campaign on using ‘yellow’ cloth bags or ‘manjapai’ as it is called in Tamil, is aimed at encouraging the people to return to the use of this eco-friendly bag and discard the plastic bags.

The state government had enforced a ban on the production, use, storage, distribution, transportation, or sale of 14 types of plastics with effect from January 1, 2019.

Rajnath Singh inaugurates Brahmos missile manufacturing unit in Lucknow

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has laid the foundation stone of the BrahMos Aerospace cruise missile manufacturing unit in Lucknow. He also laid the foundation of DRDO Defence Technology and Test Centre in Lucknow. BrahMos Project will help in creating 5,500 fresh job opportunities.

BrahMos is a joint venture between the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) of India and the NPOM of Russia. BrahMos missile derives its name from the Brahmaputra river of India and the Moskva river of Russia.

All the three wings of the Indian defence forces have already inducted the BrahMos advanced weapon
system.

Recently, India successfully test-fired the air version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from the integrated test range of Chandipur.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Uttar Pradesh Capital: Lucknow;
  • Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister: Yogi Adityanath;
  • Uttar Pradesh Governor: Anandiben Patel.

Govt set up a high-level committee to examine lifting Nagaland’s AFSPA

The Government of India has decided to constitute a ‘five-member’ committee to look into the demand for withdrawal of Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act “AFSPA” in Nagaland.

The committee headed by Vivek Joshi, the Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India, would submit its recommendations within 45 days. Additional Secretary in the Home Ministry Piyush Goyal will be its Member-Secretary. The Chief Secretary and DGP of Nagaland and the DGP of Assam Rifles will be the other members of the committee.

The AFSPA empowers security forces to conduct operations and arrest anyone without any prior warrant. It also gives immunity to the forces if they shoot someone dead.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Chief Minister of Nagaland: Neiphiu Rio; Governor of Nagaland: Jagdish Mukhi.

International

China launches new camera satellite with 5m resolution

China has launched a new satellite with a camera capable of taking photos of the ground with a resolution of five meters, according to the National Space Administration of China (CNSA).

The satellite, called “Ziyuan-1 02E” or “Five Meter 02 Optical Satellite”. Beijing time by a Long March-4C rocket from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in Beijing Province. Shanxi (northern China). This is the 39th launch of the Longue Marche-4C rocket and the 403rd launch of the entire Long March series.

The Ziyuan-1 02E weighs approximately 2.5 kilograms and is equipped with infrared, near-infrared, and hyperspectral cameras. The cameras can take panchromatic color images of the Earth.

Somalia’s President suspends PM Mohamed Hussein Roble

Somalian Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble has been suspended. President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo has suspended the Prime Minister, who is facing allegations of involvement in the theft of land.

Mohamed Roble accused the President of trying to stage a coup and said, he would continue in office. He urged the security forces to take orders from him rather than Mr. Farmajo. The term of Farmajo officially ended in February but was extended because of disagreements over how to choose a new incumbent.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Somalia Capital: Mogadishu;
  • Somalia Currency: Somali shilling.

Japan launches Inmarsat-6 F1 Communications Satellite

Japan has launched Inmarsat-6 F1, a communication satellite, through a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) H-IIA204 rocket from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center that will enter geostationary orbit, about 22,240 miles (35,790 kilometers) above the earth.

It is developed by the London-based company Inmarsat as a part of its next-generation satellite broadband service. The satellite is 12,060-pound (5,470 kilograms) and is the first of two ‘I-6’ spacecraft.

Designated H-IIAF45, Inmarsat-6 F1 launch is Japan’s third orbital flight of 2021 and H-IIA’s second mission of the year, marking the 45th flight of the H-IIA vehicle overall.

It is a dual-payload satellite featuring both L-band (ELERA) and Ka-band (Global Xpress). It is the world’s largest and most sophisticated commercial communications satellite ever launched.

H-IIA is Japan’s longest-serving liquid-fueled rocket (since 2001) and is currently the largest rocket operated by MHI for the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Founded: 1 October 2003;
  • Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Headquarters: Chōfu, Tokyo, Japan.

Appointments

Eishin Chihana named as the new chairman of Yamaha Motor India Group

India Yamaha Motor (IYM) Pvt Ltd. has announced that Eishin Chihana has taken charge of the Group’s India operations as its new Chairman.

He has replaced Motofumi Shitara. Mr. Chihana has been associated with Yamaha Motor Company and its group companies across the globe since 1991.

The Indian-origin judge appointed to South Africa’s highest judicial bench

Indian origin, Narandran ‘Jody’ Kollapen has been appointed to South Africa’s highest judicial bench, the Constitutional Court. The appointment of 64-year-old Kollapen & Rammaka Steven Mathopo is the latest addition to the Constitutional Court after a lengthy process of public interviews.

Both will take office from January 1, 2022. President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the appointment of Rammaka Steven Mathopo and Kollapen to the Constitutional Court after lengthy public interviews.

IAS Praveen Kumar named as DG & CEO of Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs

Govt of India has approved the appointment of Praveen Kumar, IAS, Former Secretary, Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship to the post of Director General & Chief Executive Officer, Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs (IICA).

The proposal for setting up IICA was approved by Planning Commission in the year 2007. It was established in 2008 at Manesar, Haryana.

Praveen Kumar is a 1987 batch retired IAS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre, and a former Secretary, Skill Development & Entrepreneurship.

Radhika Jha named as CEO of Energy Efficiency Services

Radhika Jha has been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer in state-run Energy Efficiency Services (EESL). EESL is a joint venture between NTPC, Power Grid, Power Finance Corp, and REC, working to promote energy efficiency in the country.

Prior to the new posting, the IAS officer was serving as Secretary to the Government of Uttarakhand for the Education Department. She took charge of the post in July this year and navigated the operational guidelines for resuming classes post COVID.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Energy Efficiency ServicesHeadquarters: New Delhi;
  • Energy Efficiency Services Founded: 2009;
  • Energy Efficiency Services Chairmen: Arun Kumar Mishra.

GoI appoints Atul Kumar Goel as new MD & CEO of PNB

The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved the appointment of Atul Kumar Goel, MD & CEO of UCO Bank, as MD & CEO of Punjab National Bank (PNB) with effect from February 1 next year.

Goel will serve as PNB chief until December 31, 2024, which is his attaining the superannuation age. Goel will replace Mallikarjuna Rao, incumbent MD & CEO of PNB.

Rao was given a three-month extension that will end on January 31, 2022. Meanwhile, the ACC has appointed Soma Sankara Prasad, currently Deputy Managing Director at State Bank of India, as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer in UCO Bank. He will serve as MD & CEO of UCO Bank till the date of attaining the age of superannuation on May 31, 2023.

Agreements

Indipaisa tie-up with NSDL Payments Bank to launch a new Fintech platform

Indipaisa has signed a partnership agreement with NSDL Payments Bank to launch Financial Technology (Fintech) solutions targeting India’s 63 million Small & Mid-sized Enterprise (SME) sector.

To empower SME owners & operators to provide facilities and services that help them grow businesses, comply with government tax laws and build a sustainable future.

Indipaisa’s mission is to empower SME owners and operators to take charge of their finances as well as give them facilities and services that help them grow their businesses, comply with government tax laws, and build a better future for their families.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • NSDL Payments Bank Founded: 1996;
  • NSDL Payments Bank Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra;
  • NSDL Payments Bank MD & CEO: Abhijit Kamalapurkar.

HDFC Bank tie-up with IPPB to offer banking services in rural areas

HDFC Bank has signed an MoU with India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) to offer banking services to over 4.7 crore customers of IPPB in semi-urban and rural areas. Under the MoU, out of 4.7 crores, customers around 90 per cent reside in rural areas.

The HDFC bank aims to boost its financial inclusion drive by leveraging IPPB’s network of 650 branches and over 136,000 banking access points.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • India Post Payments Bank Founded: 2018;
  • India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) Headquarters: New Delhi, Delhi;
  • India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) MD & CEO: J Venkatramu;
  • India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) Tag line: Aapka Bank, Aapke Dwaar.

Banking

HDFC Life signed a bancassurance partnership with South Indian Bank

HDFC Life signed a bancassurance (Bank-Insurance) agreement with South Indian Bank to enable customers of the South Indian Bank to avail HDFC Life’s life insurance products and services to the customers of South Indian Bank.

This bancassurance arrangement will enable customers of the South Indian Bank to avail HDFC Life’s wide range of life insurance products which include solutions for protection, savings and investment, retirement and critical illness. This bancassurance partnership will further strengthen HDFC Life’s business across India.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • South Indian Bank Founded: 29 January 1929;
  • South Indian Bank Headquarters: Thrissur, Kerala;
  • South Indian Bank MD & CEO: Murali Ramakrishnan.

IndusInd Bank and NPCI tie-up to offer cross-border payments through UPI

IndusInd Bank has partnered with the National Payments Corporation to offer real-time cross-border remittances to India using UPI IDs, for its Money Transfer Operator (MTO) partners. It is the first Indian bank to go live on UPI for cross-border payments/NRI remittances.

Under this arrangement, the MTOs will be using the IndusInd Bank channel to connect with NPCI’s UPI payment systems for validation and cross-border payment settlement into beneficiary accounts. IndusInd Bank has started off with Thailand’s DeeMoney for Foreign Inward Remittance (FIR) through UPI.

RBI imposed penalty on payment operators One Mobikwik & Spice Money

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has imposed monetary penalties on two payment system operators, One Mobikwik Systems Private Limited and Spice Money Limited, for violation of norms. Both the payment companies have been slapped with a fine of Rs 1 crore, as per the order issued by the central bank.

In a statement, the RBI said it has imposed the penalty on the two payment system operators for “committing offences of the nature referred to in Section 26 (6) of the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 (PSSAct).”

Ranks and Reports

NITI Aayog released 4th State Health Index

NITI Aayog has released the fourth edition of the State Health Index for 2019–20 that provides incremental performance in health outcomes and status. The index is developed by: NITI Aayog, World Bank, and Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW).

The report, titled “Healthy States, Progressive India”, ranks states and Union Territories on their year-on-year incremental performance in health outcomes as well as their overall status.

Among the ‘Larger States’, in terms of annual incremental performance, Uttar Pradesh, Assam and Telangana are the top three ranking states.

Among ‘Smaller States’, Mizoram and Meghalaya registered the maximum annual incremental progress. Among UTs, Delhi, followed by Jammu and Kashmir, showed the best incremental performance.

On overall ranking based on the composite index score in 2019–20, the top-ranking states were Kerala and Tamil Nadu among the ‘Larger States’, Mizoram and Tripura among the ‘Smaller States’, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu and Chandigarh among the UTs.

Good Governance Index 2021: Gujarat topped the ranking

Good Governance Index 2021 was launched by Union Minister Amit Shah on the occasion of the Good Governance Day on 25 December 2021.

GGI 2021 was prepared by the Department of Administration Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG). The GGI 2021 framework covered 10 sectors and 58 indicators.

Top ranking states in sectors as well as composite ranks:

SectorsGroup AGroup BNE & Hill StatesUTs
Agriculture and Allied SectorsAndhra PradeshMadhya PradeshMizoramD & N Haveli
Commerce & IndustriesTelanganaUttar PradeshJ&KDaman & Diu
Human Resource and DevelopmentPunjabOdishaHimachal PradeshChandigarh
Public HealthKeralaWest BengalMizoramA & N Island
Public Infrastructure and UtilitiesGoaBiharHimachal PradeshA & N Island
Economic GovernanceGujaratOdishaTripuraDelhi
Social Welfare & DevelopmentTelanganaChhattisgarhSikkimD & N Havelli
Judicial & Public SecurityTamil NaduRajasthanNagalandChandigarh
EnvironmentKeralaRajasthanManipurDaman & Diu
Citizen-Centric GovernanceHaryanaRajasthanUttarakhandDelhi
CompositeGujaratMadhya PradeshHimachal PradeshDelhi

CEBR: India to become 3rd largest economy in 2031

The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) from the United Kingdom has predicted that the Indian economy will become the world’s third-largest by the year 2031. In the year 2022, India is set to regain its sixth position in World Economic League Table (WELT) from France, as per CEBR.

The annual league table also predicted that China will overtake the US to be the largest economy in 2030 (two years later than the forecast in 2021). The world economy is set to surpass $100 trillion for the first time in 2022.

The World Economic League Table 2022 shows the economic forecasts for 191 countries to 2036:

Ranking out of 191 countries20212022202620312036
India 76533
United States 11122
China 22211
Japan 33345
Germany 44454
UK55666
France67777

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Center for Economic and Business Report (CEBR) Chairman: Martin Piers;
  • Center for Economic and Business Report Headquarters: London, United Kingdom.

Awards

PETA: Alia Bhatt India’s 2021 Person of the Year

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India has named Bollywood star Alia Bhatt its 2021 Person of the Year. She is an animal lover and often shares pictures with her pets. This year, Alia Bhatt invested in Phool, the company behind Fleather, which is vegan leather made from discarded temple flowers.

Her vegan kidswear line, Ed-a-Mamma, also won a 2021 PETA India fashion award for helping to nurture kids’ love for animals and nature.

Alia also starred in a pro-adoption PETA India campaign to help cats and dogs. She has used her position to call for stronger animal protection laws.

Committees

SEBI named Aarati Krishnan as a member of MF advisory panel

Aarati Krishnan, Editorial Consultant with BusinessLine, has been inducted as a member of the Securities & Exchange Board of India’s Advisory Committee on Mutual Funds.

The committee, chaired by Usha Thorat, former Deputy Governor of Reserve Bank of India, advises SEBI on matters related to mutual fund regulation to ensure investor protection, development of the industry and disclosure requirements.

It suggests measures required to be taken to render the legal framework for mutual funds transparent and simple for investors and constituents.

The committee has 24 members comprising CEOs of leading mutual fund houses as well as representatives from academia, exchanges, consumer interest groups, fund trustees, rating agencies, distribution firms and media.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Securities and Exchange Board of India Founded: 12 April 1992.
  • Securities and Exchange Board of India Headquarters: Mumbai.
  • Securities and Exchange Board of India Agency executive: Ajay Tyagi.

Sports

Vijay Hazare Trophy 2021: Himachal Pradesh beats Tamil Nadu

Himachal Pradesh beat Tamil Nadu by 11 runs (VJD Method) in the final to win their maiden Vijay Hazare Trophy title, at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur. Batting first, Tamil Nadu posted a challenging total of 314 in 49.4 overs.

In reply, Himachal were 299 for 4 in 47.3 overs when bad light stopped play and the chasing side were declared winners via the VJD (V Jayadevan rule) method.

Shubham Arora’s unbeaten century and his 148-run stand with Amit Kumar (74) for the fourth wicket powered Himachal Pradesh to their first-ever Indian domestic title win, Vijay Hazare trophy 2021-22 final.

Pankaj Advani won National Billiards Title 2021

Pankaj Advani has defended his National Billiards Title by winning his 11th tournament, after defeating his PSPB teammate Dhruv Sitwala in a 5-2 game final that was held in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.

He represented the Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) team in the National Billiards Championship. The 88th National Billiards and Snooker Championships 2021, organised by Cue Sports India at Bhopal, MP.

Uttar Pradesh won 11th Hockey India junior national championship

Uttar Pradesh has crowned the winners of the 11th Junior National Men’s Hockey Championship following a 3-1 victory over Chandigarh in the final at Kovilpatti, Tamil Nadu.

Tournament top scorer Sharda Nand Tiwari opened the scoring for Uttar Pradesh. Uttar Pradesh Hockey maintained its unbeaten record. In the 3rd/4th Place playoff match, the Hockey Association of Odisha edged out Hockey Haryana 3 – 2 in a closely contested affair to clinch 3rd place in the competition.

Nitesh Kumar wins double gold at 4th Para-Badminton National Championship

Nitesh Kumar won doubled gold at the 4th Para-Badminton National Championship, which concluded in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. Haryana’s Nitesh along with his partner Tarun Dhillon defeated World No. 1 Paralympic Games gold medallist Pramod Bhagat and Manoj Sarkar in straight sets 21-19, 21-11 in the Men’s doubles finals to win the gold.

Earlier, Nitesh also won the gold medal in the Men’s singles category. World No 1 SL3 Para-Badminton player Parul Parmar from Gujarat also secured gold while Mandeep Kaur from Uttarakhand won Silver and Mansi won bronze.

Obituary

Former Greek President Karolos Papoulias passes away

Veteran Greek politician Karolos Papoulias, who served as president at the height of the economic crisis of the 2010s, died. Papoulias, a longtime socialist lawmaker and minister, was close to Andreas Papandreou, the founder of the Socialist PASOK party.

He served two terms between 2005 and 2015. Papoulias, who was also foreign minister in 1985-89 and 1993-96, was a high-ranking member of socialist PASOK party and a close associate of its late leader and former prime minister Andreas Papandreou.

South African campaigner Archbishop Desmond Tutu passes away

Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and veteran of South Africa`s struggle against white minority rule, has died aged 90. He was awarded Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 for his non-violent opposition to apartheid.

A decade later, he witnessed the ends of that regime and he chaired a Truth and Reconciliation Commission, set up to unearth atrocities committed during those dark days.

Former England Test Captain Ray Illingworth passes away

Former England captain, Ray Illingworth has passed away. He played 61 Tests for England between 1958 and 1973 and captained the country 31 times, winning 12 matches and an Ashes series in Australia in 1970.

He was an all-rounder who scored 1,836 Test runs at an average of 23.24 and claimed 122 wickets with his off-spin bowling at 31.20. He was chairman of the England selectors between 1993 and 1996 and coached the team in 1995-96.

E.O. Wilson, Known as ‘Father of Biodiversity,’ passes away

E.O. Wilson, the former Harvard University biologist and Pulitzer Prize winner whose study of ants and human behaviour made him one of the world’s most influential scientists and prompted his calls for action to protect millions of species on the planet, has passed away. He was 92. To protect Earth earned him the nickname “Darwin’s natural heir”.

He was the author of hundreds of scientific papers and more than 30 books, two of which won him Pulitzer Prizes for nonfiction: 1978’s On Human Nature, and The Ants in 1990.

“He-Man” artist and toy designer Mark Taylor passes away

Mark Taylor, artist and toy designer for the He-Man and the Masters of the Universe franchise as well as the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, passed away. Taylor began his career with Mattel in 1976 as a packaging designer.

He-man was the muscled frontman for toy manufacturer Mattel’s Masters of the Universe franchise. He-Man was the epitome of a hulking superhero warrior but also became an icon within the LGBTQ+ community.

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