Latest Current Affairs Daily Update

Daily Current Affairs in English – 12th & 13th April 2021

Important Days

National Safe Motherhood Day: 11 April

National Safe Motherhood Day is observed on April 11 every year. National Safe Motherhood Day is an initiative of the White Ribbon Alliance India (WRAI), to enforce that women must have availability and adequate access to care during pregnancy childbirth and postnatal services.

The day also marks the birth anniversary of Kasturba Gandhi, the wife of the father of Nation Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi.

At the request of WRAI, an alliance of 1800 organizations, in 2003, the Government of India declared April 11th, the anniversary of Kasturba Gandhi’s birth, as National Safe Motherhood Day. India is the 1st country in the world to have socially declared a National Safe Motherhood Day.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • White Ribbon Alliance India was launched in 1999.

World Parkinson’s Day: April 11

Every year, April 11 is observed as World Parkinson’s Day to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease, which is a progressive nervous system disorder.

The day marks the birthday of Dr James Parkinson from London, who was the first person to systematically described the six individuals with the symptoms of Parkinson Disease.

International Day of Human Space Flight observed globally on 12 April

The International Day of Human Space Flight is observed globally on April 12 every year. The UN General Assembly passed a resolution on April 7, 2011, had declared April 12 to be celebrated as International Day of Human Space Flight.

On 12 April 1961, was the date of the 1st human space flight was carried out by Yuri Gagarin, a Soviet citizen, who became the first person to journey into outer space.

This historic incident opened the way for space exploration for the benefit of all mankind. 12 April was also the date of the 1st Space Shuttle STS-1 of Columbia launched in 1981, which is also commemorated on this date.


National

Ramesh Pokhriyal launches implementation plan ‘SARTHAQ’

Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal chaired a high-level meeting on the implementation of the National Education Policy 2020 and released an implementation plan for school education called ‘Students’ and Teachers’ Holistic Advancement through Quality Education (SARTHAQ)’.

SARTHAQ, developed by the Department of School Education and Literacy, is an indicative and suggestive implementation plan for school education and was released as part of the celebrations leading to the Amrit Mahotsav on 75 years of India’s independence.

The plan keeps in mind the concurrent nature of education and adheres to the spirit of federalism. States and UTs are given the flexibility to adapt this plan with local contextualisation and also modify it as per their needs and requirements.

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik launches ‘mask abhiyan’ against Covid-19

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has launched a 14-day “Mask Abhiyan” as part of efforts to prevent the spread of coronavirus in view of rising cases and urged people to strictly follow the safety guidelines.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik sought their cooperation in turning the use of mask into a habit to tackle the current resurgence of the virus. Bringing an amendment to the Odisha Covid-19 Regulations under the Epidemic Diseases Act-1897.

In order to ensure that the 14 days mask Abhiyan gives results, the state government yesterday enhanced the fines for the violators from 1,000 rupees to 2000 rupees. Meanwhile, the state’s covid-19 active caseload mounted further to about 6000 with the detection of 1282 fresh cases yesterday, even as the state surpassed a milestone in administering more than 40 lakh vaccine doses as of date.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Chief Minister of Odisha: Naveen Patnaik.
  • Odisha Capital: Bhubaneswar.
  • Odisha Governor: Ganeshi Lal.

Punjab appoints Sonu Sood as state’s covid vaccination ambassador

Bollywood actor Sonu Sood has been made the brand ambassador for Punjab’s anti-coronavirus vaccination programme. During the coronavirus-induced lockdown last year, the actor had helped migrants reach their home states.

Sood catapulted to the national spotlight for feeding thousands of underprivileged people amid the COVID-19 pandemic. During his meeting with Punjab Chief Minister, the actor presented his book ‘I am no Messiah’, which he said captures the experiences of his journey from Moga to Mumbai.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Punjab CM: Captain Amarinder Singh.
  • Punjab Governor: V.P.Singh Badnore.

International

Singapore becomes the first country to ratify mega free trade agreement ‘RCEP’

Singapore ratified the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement, the world’s largest free trade agreement, led by China. In doing so, Singapore became the first among 15 participating countries to ratify RCEP.

The RCEP must first be ratified by at least six ASEAN and three non-ASEAN member states to come into effect. Once implemented, RCEP would be the world’s largest free trade agreement, covering around one-third of the world’s population and about 30% of the world’s economy.

RCEP is a multi-nation trade pact, comprising 10 ASEAN economies as well as Australia, China, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea.

The RCEP was signed by the 15 participating countries in November 2020. India had opted out of it in 2019.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Singapore Currency: Singapore dollar.
  • Capital of Singapore: Singapore.
  • PM of Singapore: Lee Hsien Loong.

United Arab Emirates names its first female astronaut

The United Arab Emirates named the next two astronauts in its space programme on 10th April, including the country’s first female astronaut. Noura al-Matroushi is the UAE’s first female astronaut. The announcement gave no biographical information about her or her male counterpart, Mohammed al-Mulla.

Al-Matroushi works as an engineer at the Abu Dhabi-based National Petroleum Construction Co. Al-Mulla serves as a pilot with Dubai police and heads their training division. The two are set to head to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, for training. In 2019, Hazzaa Al-Mansoori became the UAE’s first astronaut. He spent a week on the International Space Station.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • President of UAE: Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
  • Capital of UAE: Abu Dhabi; Currency: United Arab Emirates dirham.

Banking

Airtel Payments Bank announces ‘Rewards123’ savings account

Airtel Payments Bank launched its new ‘Rewards123’ savings account, which provides customers with perks and rewards. The Rewards123 Savings Account is built specifically that allows you to get access to a variety of perks when you save and transact digitally.

The company claims that its newly introduced saving account is designed to offer consistent value, with assured rewards on different types of digital transactions throughout the year.

Airtel Payments Bank says that its Rewards123 savings bank account will give multiple benefits to users with annual earnings of up to ₹960.

In addition to that, users will get 1% cashback when they load ₹1,000 through UPI in their account. Users will get a maximum of ₹10 per month as a part of this benefit.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Airtel Payments Bank’s MD and CEO: Nubrata Biswas.
  • Airtel Payments Bank Headquarters: New Delhi.
  • Airtel Payments Bank Founded: January 2017.

Ranks and Reports

Academic Ranking of World Universities 2020 published

The 2020 Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) is released by ShanghaiRanking Consultancy. The Indian Institute of Science (IISc Bangalore) has secured the top position among the best higher education institutes in India, while Calcutta University became the best varsity in the country, as per the published Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU 2020).

The Indian institutes are not even in the top 100 list, the best higher education institute, (IISc Bangalore) is in the category of 501- 600.

Best Institute Ranking Index

  • Rank 1: Harvard University
  • Rank 2: Stanford University
  • Rank 3: University of Cambridge
  • Category of 501- 600- IISc Bangalore

Regional Best Institute Ranking Index

  • Rank 1: IISc Bangalore
  • Category 2-4: IIT Madras
  • Category 2-4: University of Calcutta

About the Academic Ranking of World Universities:

Since 2003, ARWU has been presenting the world top universities annually based on transparent methodology and objective third-party data. It has been recognized as the precursor of global university rankings and the most trustworthy one.


Summits and Conferences

India-Netherlands Virtual Summit

Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mr Mark Rutte, held a Virtual Summit. During the India- Netherlands virtual Summit, the two leaders reviewed the existing bilateral engagements and also exchanged views on further expanding and diversifying the relationship in trade and economy, water management, agriculture sector, smart cities, science & technology, healthcare and space.

Apart from this the two Prime Ministers also agreed on instituting a ‘Strategic Partnership on Water’ to further deepen the Indo-Dutch cooperation in the water-related sector and upgrading the Joint Working Group on the water to Ministerial-level.

They also exchanged views on regional and global challenges such as climate change, counter-terrorism and the Covid-19 pandemic and agreed to leverage the emerging convergences in new areas like Indo-Pacific, Resilient Supply Chains and Global Digital Governance.

Useful notes for all competitive exams:

  • Netherlands Capital: Amsterdam; Currency: Euro.

Awards News

Indian Business Tycoon Yusuffali MA Gets Top Civilian Award In UAE

Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan has honoured Indian-origin businessman Yusuffali MA and 11 other individuals with Abu Dhabi’s top civilian award for their noble and charitable contributions to the community.

The prestigious award was given to Mr Yusuffali, who was born in Kerala, for his outstanding contribution to Abu Dhabi’s business, industry and support to various philanthropic initiatives.

Mr Yusuffali, the Chairman and Managing Director of Abu Dhabi-based LuLu Group which operates hypermarkets and retail companies in many countries, was honoured on Friday by the Crown Prince.

Guneet Monga conferred with Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters honour

Acclaimed filmmaker, Guneet Monga to be conferred with honour of the Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters (Chevalier dans I’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres). It is the second-highest civilian French honour and has earlier been awarded to big Hollywood names like Meryl Streep, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Bruce Willis.

As a producer, Guneet has several critically acclaimed films to her credit. The list includes Masaan, Lunchbox, Haraamkhor, Peddlers; Oscar-winning short film documentary — Period, End of Sentence, among others.


Sports

Kiren Rijiju inaugurates Khelo India State Centre of Excellence in Srinagar

Union Minister for Sports & Youth Affairs, Kiren Rijiju inaugurated the Khelo India State Centre of Excellence (KISCE) for Rowing discipline at the Jammu & Kashmir Sports Council Water Sports Academy at the Nehru Park in the world-famous Dal Lake in Srinagar.

This is one of the two KISCEs from Jammu & Kashmir. The other being the Maulana Azad Stadium for Fencing discipline in Jammu.

There are currently 24 KISCEs across 23 States and Union Territories and each of them focuses on Olympics sports discipline. This is an ongoing endeavour to scale up existing centres from the States and Union Territories to the world standard level keeping in mind the big picture of getting India to excel at the Olympics.


Obituary

Veteran actor Satish Kaul passes away

Veteran actor Satish Kaul, who had 300 Punjabi and Hindi films to his credit and played the role of Lord Indra in the TV show Mahabharat, passed away.

The actor began his career in the early ’70s, juggling between Hindi and Punjabi films. While his popular Bollywood films include Ram Lakhan, Pyaar Toh Hona Hi Tha and Aunty No 1 etc.


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