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Daily G.K. - Top Stories

23 Oct 2021

DAILY G.K. TEST

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INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

UN Sets up Special Trust Fund for 'People's Economy' in Afghanistan

  • The United Nations had set up a special trust fund to provide urgently needed cash directly to Afghans through a system tapping into donor funds frozen since the Taliban takeover in August.
  • With the local economy imploding, the aim is to inject liquidity into Afghan households to permit them to survive this winter and remain in their homeland.
  • According to United Nations Development Programme, some 97% of Afghan households could be living below the poverty line by mid-2022.

Barbados Elects First ever President ahead of Becoming Republic

  • Barbados elected its first ever President as it prepares to become a republic, removing Queen Elizabeth as head of state.
  • Dame Sandra Masonis set to be sworn in on 30 November, which will mark the country's 55th anniversary of independence from Britain.
  • The first woman to serve on the Barbados Court of Appeals, Dame Sandra has been governor-general since 2018.
  • The government announced the plan to move to a republic status last year.
  • It said "the time had come" for Barbados to "fully leave our colonial past behind". The change had already been recommended by a constitutional review in 1998.
  • The historic election came after a joint session of the House of Assembly and the Senate on Wednesday. Prime Minister Mia Mottley described the vote as a "seminal moment" for the nation.
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ENVIRONMENT

India among 5 Countries with most Extreme Heat Exposure

  • According to a Lancet Countdown report, India is one of the five countries in the world whose vulnerable populations had the most exposure to extreme heat over the past five years. And this exposure is increasing. Yet, like many countries, India is under-prepared to prevent, mitigate or treat the health effects of climate change.
  • By continuing to support fossil fuels and failing to do enough to adapt to the changing climate, countries including India are endangering the health of their citizens, as well as leaving them at risk of widespread food and water shortages and extreme weather, the report has pointed out.
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BUSINESS AND ECONOMY

Wipro Signs Multi-year Strategic IT, Digital Deal with National Grid

  • Wipro Limited inked a multi-year global IT and digital deal with UK-based electric and gas utility provider National Grid for expediting its digital innovation journey.
  • National Grid operates in the UK and the US.
  • Wipro by employing its Boundaryless Enterprise solutions will help in the continued digital transformation of National Grid. The Indian IT firm will also use the solutions to enable integration of the utility's managed services and consolidation of various data centers across the US and the UK to next generation hosting services.
  • According to Wipro, the sustainable data centers will allow for improved program governance apart from greater consolidation and the moving of all server and application functions from conventional data centers.
  • Wipro will also help National Grid with mainframe migration and managed services transition, which will include the eventual implementation of a hybrid cloud solution for the latter.

LG Tops Online Searches for ACs in 2021, HP Leads Laptop Space

  • About 35 per cent of internet users looking for a laptop, searched for a piece by a specific brand, instead of putting in a generic query. And within this space, HP topped the charts, being the most searched brand in both Mumbai and Delhi, and with the highest number of searches at an all-India level. The second spot went to Lenovo in the two major metros, and to Dell at the pan-India level.
  • Along with this, AMD Ryzen processors are becoming more common in searches, and small-screen laptops, particularly 13-inch models, are becoming more popular in metro cities, while the overall Indian market still searches for the larger 14-inch-plus screen sizes.
  • As far as AC brands are concerned, LG grabbed pole position all across, while it was a tussle between Voltas and Daikin for second place.

Flipkart Launches Skill-building Academy for E-commerce Logistics Sector

  • E-commerce firm Flipkart is setting up a digital learning academy to up skill thousands of students every year. The Supply Chain Operations Academy (SCOA) is Flipkart's ambitious project and commitment to providing relevant industry training and knowledge to help create a pool of skilled supply chain operations talent in the country. This will further help bridge the skill gap and create employment opportunities in the expanding supply chain industry in the country.
  • The specialised and robust training program under SCOA has been designed and created by the Flipkart team to provide a holistic experience and training to candidates, which will involve 15 days of digital classroom training and 45 days of on-the-job apprenticeship at Flipkart supply chain facilities. The program has been designed to impart knowledge on various facets of the e-commerce supply chain, the roles within the supply chain, soft skills, safety and compliance know-how. It involves a 60-day skilling program that will empower the youth to build careers in various aspects of supply chain management and certify them to increase their employability.
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SPORTS

Denmark open: PV Sindhu in Quarters

  • India's double Olympics medallist PV Sindhu reached the quarter-finals of the Denmark Open Super 1000 badminton tournament after three hard-fought win over Busanan Ongbamrungphan from Thailand.
  • This is Sindhu's first tournament since winning the bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics in August. One of India's greatest Olympians, Sindhu had taken a break to rejuvenate herself before making a comeback in this tournament.
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DEFENCE

Maiden India-UK Tri-service Exercise Begins

  • The maiden India-UK Joint Tri-Service exercise Konkan Shakti began on October 21 off the west coast of India and aims to derive mutual benefits from each other's experiences.
  • The exercise is scheduled to be held in two phases.
  • The harbour phase is planned at Mumbai from October 21 to 23, while at sea, the exercises will be conducted from October 24 to 27.
  • Over decades now, both navies have undertaken bilateral exercises, exchanges and enhanced their technical cooperation. Rightly so, this has formed the basis for the maiden tri-service bilateral exercise, Konkan Shakti -21.
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PERSONS IN NEWS

Adidas Ropes in Deepika Padukone as Global Brand Ambassador

  • Sportswear retailer Adidas has announced its partnership with Bollywood actressDeepika Padukone who will endorse Adidas women globally. The move comes as it builds a stronger brand salience among female shoppers.
  • With Padukone joining Adidas' powerful roster of women athletes and partners around the globe, Adidas strengthens its focus on democratizing and diversifying sport for women through inspiring personalities.
  • Padukone joins an already dense line-up of female brand ambassadors associated with Adidas in India—including weightlifting heavyweight Mirabai Chanu; boxers Lovlina Borgohain, Nikhat Zareen and Simranjeet Kaur; sprinter Hima Das, and squash player Dipika Pallikal.

Colin Powell, First Black US Secretary of State, Passes Away

  • Colin Powell, the trailblazing soldier and diplomat whose sterling reputation of service to Republican and Democratic presidents was stained by his faulty claims to justify the 2003 US war in Iraq, died of Covid-19 complications. He was 84. He instead joined President George W. Bush's administration in 2001 as secretary of state. He was the first Black person to represent the US government on the world stage.
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DAYS AND EVENTS

Punjab to Host Investors' Summit

  • Punjab is organising the Progressive Punjab Investors' Summit (PPIS) on October 26 and 27, an event aimed to provide a platform to experience the success story of Punjab and explore investment opportunities offered by the state.
  • Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi reviewed the preparedness for the summit and directed all stakeholders, especially the Punjab Bureau of Investment Promotion, to leave no stone unturned in ensuring effective showcasing of the State's upward industrial growth.

CII organises International Conference and Exhibition "Future Tech 2021"

  • The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) organised an International Conference and Exhibition on Digital technologies, "Future Tech 2021- a Journey of digital transformation to technology adoption and acceleration". The focus theme of the International conference is "Driving technologies for building the future, we all can trust".
  • The inaugural session was virtually attended by Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of State in the Ministry of Electronics & IT, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. The theme will have 5 pillars: Strategy, Growth, Resilience, Inclusiveness, Trust. The International conference will serve as a platform for Indian industry and entrepreneurs to understand the nuances of technologies and identify the right approach and technologies for their business as well as B2B partnerships.
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AWARDS AND HONOURS

Parambikulam Tiger Conservation Foundation wins Earth Guardian Award

  • The Parambikulam Tiger Conservation Foundation (PaTCoF) has won the "Earth Guardian Award" which was instituted by the NatWest Group.
  • PaTCoF is a non-profit organisation under forest department which seeks to facilitate conservation of tiger and biodiversity in the Parambikulam tiger reserve.
  • Eight winners of the award were felicitated by secretary general of "UN Convention on International Trade in the Endangered Species of Wild Fauna & Flora", Ivonne Higuero in a virtual ceremony in October 2021.
  • These awards were instituted by NatWest Group India. They are part of an initiative which recognises the efforts of individuals and institutions that are working to subvert the climate change by conserving & preserving biodiversity in India.
  • Parambikulam Tiger Reserve also includes erstwhile Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, which is spread across 391 square kilometres. It is a protected area in Palakkad district of Kerala. It was established in 1973. The sanctuary lies in the Sungam range of hills in between Anaimalai Hills and Nelliampathy Hills. Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary was declared a part of Parambikulam Tiger Reserve in 2010. Tiger reserve implements the Participatory Forest Management Scheme (PFMS).
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BOOKS AND AUTHORS

Atal Innovation Mission Launches 'Innovations for You'

  • Government think-tank Niti Aayog's Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) launched a digi-book, 'Innovations for You', to showcase the success stories of AIM's start-ups in different domains.
  • According to an official statement, the first edition of the AIM's book is focused on innovations in health care and soon, other sectors shall follow.
  • The book is a compilation of 45 health tech start-ups, incubated at Atal Incubation Centres spread across the country.
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