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Daily Current Affairs in English: 03 Sep 2021

Important Days

World Coconut Day: 02 September

World Coconut Day is observed on September 02 every year since 2009. It is observed for promoting this tropical fruit and bringing awareness regarding its health benefits.

The theme of World Coconut Day 2021 is ‘Building a Safe Inclusive Resilient and Sustainable Coconut Community Amid COVID-19 Pandemic & Beyond’.

The WCD also commemorates the formation of the Asian Pacific Coconut Community (APCC), which aims to promote, coordinate and harmonize all activities of the coconut industry.

National

Ayush Minister Sarbananada Sonowal launches ‘Y-Break’ app

The Union AYUSH Minister, Sarbananda Sonowal has launched the ‘Y Break’ Yoga protocol mobile application in New Delhi. The app has been developed by Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga (MDNIY).

The app was launched as a part of the week-long activities and campaigns organized by the Ministry of Ayush to commemorate Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav from August 30 to September 5, 2021.

The Y-Break (or the “Yoga Break) mobile application is a unique five-minute Yoga protocol app, designed especially for working professionals to de-stress, refresh and re-focus at their workplace to increase their productivity, and consists of Asanas, Pranayam, and Dhyana.

While on one hand, the app will facilitate doing yoga and meditation with ease anywhere in just 5 minutes, it will also bring awareness about different Yoga practices.

Assam decides to remove Rajiv Gandhi’s name from Orang national park

The Assam cabinet has decided to remove the name of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi from the Orang National Park. Since the name Orang is associated with the sentiments of the Adivasi and tea-tribe community, the cabinet has decided to rename the Rajiv Gandhi Orang National Park as Orang National Park.

Located on the North Bank of Brahmaputra, Orang National Park spread over 78.80 sq km is the oldest forest reserve in the state. It was named a wildlife sanctuary in 1985 and declared a national park in 1999.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Assam Governor: Jagdish Mukhi;
  • Assam Chief Minister: Himanta Biswa Sarma.

International

Sri Lanka declares food emergency as forex crisis

Sri Lanka has declared a state of emergency as the food crisis worsened after private banks ran out of foreign exchange to finance imports. With the country suffering a hard-hitting economic crisis, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa said he ordered emergency regulations to counter the hoarding of sugar, rice, and other essential foods.

The Sri Lankan rupee has fallen by 7.5% against the US dollar this year. Rajapaksa has named a top army officer as “Commissioner General of Essential Services to coordinate the supply of paddy, rice, sugar, and other consumer goods”.

The move followed sharp price rises for sugar, rice, onions, and potatoes, while long queues have formed outside stores because of shortages of milk powder, kerosene oil, and cooking gas.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Sri Lanka Capitals: Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte; Currency: Sri Lankan rupee.
  • Sri Lanka Prime Minister: Mahinda Rajapaksa; Sri Lanka President: Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Appointments

IRS officer JB Mohapatra appointed as CBDT chairman

IRS officer JB Mohapatra was appointed as the chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes. His appointment was approved today by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC). He has already served as the acting chairman of the CBDT.

A 1985-batch IRS officer, Mohapatra was given the additional charge as CBDT chairman after the tenure of incumbent PC Mody ended this year in May.

Earlier, Mohapatra had served as the principal chief commissioner of Income Tax for the Andhra Pradesh and Telangana region.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Central Board of Direct Taxes Established: 1924;
  • Central Board of Direct Taxes Headquarters: New Delhi.

Economy

GST collections in August at over Rs 1.12 lakh crore

GST revenue remained above Rs 1 trillion marks for the second straight month in August at over Rs 1.12 trillion, 30 per cent higher than the collection in the year-ago period.

The mop-up in August is, however, lower than Rs 1.16 trillion collected in July 2021. Which Central GST is Rs 20,522 crore, State GST is Rs 26,605 crore, Integrated GST is Rs 56,247 crore (including Rs 26,884 crore collected on import of goods) and Cess is Rs 8,646 crore (including Rs 646 crore collected on import of goods).

List of GST Collection previous months

  • July 2021: Rs 1,16,393 crore
  • June 2021: Rs 92,849 crore
  • May 2021: Rs 1,02,709 crore
  • April 2021: ₹1.41 lakh crore(All time Highest)
  • March 2021: Rs. 1.24lacs cr.
  • Feb 2021: Rs 1,13,143 crore
  • January 2021: ₹ 1,19,847 crore

Morgan Stanley retains India GDP growth estimate at 10.5% for FY22

America-based Investment Bank, Morgan Stanley has maintained the GDP growth forecast of India at 10.5 percent for the financial year 2021-22 (FY2022).

GDP growth is expected to move into positive territory on a two-year CAGR basis from QE September.

GDP grew 20.1 percent year-on-year in the quarter ending June. On a two-year CAGR basis, real GDP contracted 4.7 percent in QE June versus plus 2.3 percent in QE March.

India’s economic growth soars to 20.1% in first quarter on a low base

India’s economy grew by 20.1% during the April-June quarter of this financial year, as against a 24.4% contraction seen during the same period last year.

The massive growth seen in the first quarter has made India the fastest-growing major economy across the globe.

In the previous quarter, India’s economy had grown by 1.6%. For the full financial year 2020-21, India’s GDP contracted by 7.3%.

Agreements

Axis Bank ties up with BharatPe for PoS business

Axis Bank has partnered with BharatPe for the point of sale (PoS) business of BharatPe named BharatSwipe.

Under the partnership, Axis Bank will be the acquiring bank for BharatSwipe and will provide acceptance of credit and debit cards for merchants associated with BharatPe. The partnership will help BharatPe to expand its merchant acquiring business in India.

BharatPe’s PoS machine BharatSwipe has an installed base of 100,000 across 16 cities, processing around Rs 1,400 crore per month.

BharatPe clocked an annualized transaction value of $2 billion on PoS terminals at the end of FY21. The company has set a target of $6 billion in transaction processed value (TPV) by FY22.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Axis Bank CEO: Amitabh Chaudhry;
  • Axis Bank Headquarters: Mumbai;
  • Axis Bank Founded: 3 December 1993, Ahmedabad.

Defence

Indian Army contingent to participate in Exercise ZAPAD 2021

Indian Army will participate in Exercise ZAPAD 2021, a Multi Nation exercise being held at Nizhniy in Russia from 3-16 September. ZAPAD 2021 is one of the theatre-level exercises of the Russian Armed Forces and will focus primarily on operations against terrorists.

Over a dozen countries from the Eurasian and South Asian Regions will participate in this signature event.

The exercise aims to enhance military and strategic ties amongst the participating nations while they plan and execute this exercise.

The Indian contingent has been put through a strenuous training schedule that encompasses all facets of conventional operations including mechanized, airborne and heliborne, counter-terrorism, combat conditioning, and firing.

Awards

Ramon Magsaysay Award 2021 names announced

Ramon Magsaysay Award 2021 awardees have been announced, the winners will be formally awarded the Magsaysay Award during the November 28 event at the Ramon Magsaysay Centre in Manila. 

List of awardees of Ramon Magsaysay Awards 2021:

  • Muhammad Amjad Saqib: A visionary who founded one of the largest microfinance institutions in Pakistan, servicing millions of families.
  • Firdausi Qadri: A Bangladeshi scientist who has been instrumental in discovering vaccines that have saved millions of lives.
  • Steven Muncy: A humanitarian who has been helping the displaced refugees of Southeast Asia rebuild their lives.
  • WatchDoc: A production house that ingeniously combines documentary filmmaking and alternative platforms to highlight underreported issues in Indonesia.
  • Roberto Ballon: A fisherman from Southern Philippines who has led a community in restoring their rich aquatic resources and their primary source of livelihood.

Summits and Conferences

India Hosts 8th Meeting of Agricultural Experts of BIMSTEC Countries

India hosted the 8th Meeting of Agriculture Experts of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Countries through video conferencing.

The meeting was chaired by Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra, Secretary, Department of Agricultural Research & Education & Director General of ICAR. BIMSTEC comprises seven Member States including five from South Asia (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka), and two from Southeast Asia, including Myanmar and Thailand.

During this meet, Chairman highlighted the UN Food System Summit 2021 and transformational aspects that are happening across agriculture and food systems globally.

The BIMSTEC Member States also appreciated the greater engagement of India in offering six slots of scholarships for Master and Ph.D. programs in agriculture and other initiatives for capacity development & training.

Science and Technology

IIT Ropar develops the world’s first ‘Plant based’ smart air-purifier

Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT), Ropar and Kanpur, and Faculty of Management Studies of Delhi University have jointly launched a living-plant-based air purifier named “Ubreathe Life”.

This air purifier will boost the air purification process in indoor spaces, such as hospitals, schools, offices, and Homes. It is the world’s first, state-of-the-art ‘Smart Bio-Filter’ that can make breathing fresh.

It has been developed by the IIT Ropar incubated startup, Urban Air Laboratory. The specific plants tested for air-purification include Peace Lily, Snake Plant, Spider plant, etc. and all have given good results in purifying indoor-air, the company has claimed.

Obituary

Bigg Boss 13 winner Sidharth Shukla passes away

Bigg Boss 13 winner actor Sidharth Shukla has passed away. He has been a part of films like Humpty Sharma Ke Dulhania.

The actor’s last screen outing was Ekta Kapoor’s popular show ‘Broken But Beautiful 3’ in which he played the role of Agastya. He is known for his roles in daily soaps such as “Balika Vadhu” and “Dil Se Dil Tak”. He is also popular for his tints in reality shows such as “Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 6”, “Fear Factor: Khatron Ke Khiladi”, and “Bigg Boss 13”.

Veteran Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Geelani passes away

Veteran Kashmiri separatist leader and former chief of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC), Syed Ali Shah Geelani passed away.

He was 91 years old. Syed Ali Gilani was born on September 29, 1929, to Syed Peer Shah Gilani of Zoori Munz village in Tehsil Bandipora. Gilani received his early education at Sopore and finished his studies at the Oriental College, Lahore Pakistan.


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