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Daily G.K. - Top Stories

25 Jan 2022


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Nepal PM Sher Bahadur Deuba Calls for Three-tier Elections within a Year

  • Nepal will hold three-tier elections within a year, Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba announced, urging the country's electoral body to start preparing for the polls.
  • Addressing the nation for the first time after he assumed the top executive post six months ago, Deuba said that the tasks performed by the coalition government within a short period had created a strong foundation for political stability, good governance and prosperity for the country.
  • The tenure of the existing Parliament, as well as local bodies and provinces, is expiring by next year.
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Ujjivan Small Finance Bank Launches Platina Fixed Deposit

  • Ujjivan Small Finance Bank launched Platina Fixed Deposit, which offers interest of 15 basis points in addition to the regular Ujjivan SFB term deposit rates.
  • The general FD for 990 days tenure gives 6.75% for general citizens and 7.50% for senior citizens, but Platina FD offers 15 bps over and above these interest rates, as per the company.
  • However, it comes with certain conditions. The minimum FD amount is Rs. 20 lakh and the maximum amount is less than Rs. 2 crore.
  • The Platina FD is a non-callable deposit, partial & pre-mature withdrawal is not applicable to this scheme.
  • The interest payout options can be availed on the monthly, quarterly and also at the end of the maturity period.
  • The deposit tenure ranges from one year to a maximum of five years.

Paytm, Fullerton Announce Partnership to Scale up Digital Lending to MSMEs

  • Paytm and non-banking financial company Fullerton India have announced a partnership to expand digital lending to MSMEs and consumers from smaller cities and towns.
  • Fullerton India and One97 Communications Limited, which owns the brand Paytm, India's leading digital payments and financial services platform, have announced a partnership to provide lending products to merchant partners and consumers. With the partnership, the two established institutions will leverage data-driven insights and wide reach to bring credit to new-to-credit users.
  • With this partnership, the fintech users will get Paytm Postpaid (buy-now-pay-later) feature on the Paytm platform. Besides, the partnership is set to offer lending products like merchant loans.
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Hubble Spots Beautiful Trio of Galaxies

  • The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope captured an image of a group of three galaxies, collectively known as NGC 7764A.
  • NGC 7764A is a fascinating example of just how awkward astronomical nomenclature can be.
  • The three galaxies are individually referred to as NGC 7764A1, NGC 7764A2 and NGC 7764A3, and just to be really difficult, an entirely separate galaxy, named NGC 7764, sits in the skies about a Moon's distance (as seen from Earth) away.
  • NGC 7764A is located approximately 425 million light-years away in the constellation of Phoenix. NGC 7764A is located approximately 425 million light-years away in the constellation of Phoenix.

India among Top 10 AI Adopters

  • India is among the top 10 nations in the world in terms of technological advancements and funding in artificial intelligence, according to findings from a study published by The Brookings Institution. While India is outside the top 10 in terms of commercial and research initiatives, it ranks sixth in terms of spending and investments on AI made by public, governmental initiatives, as well as private institutes and organisations.
  • The nations leading AI achievements ahead of India are the US, China, the UK, France, Japan and Germany. Canada, South Korea and Italy are behind India in the top 10 AI adopters list, as per the study.
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Hossein Vafaei Becomes First Iranian to Win a Snooker Ranking Title

  • Hossein Vafaei became the first Iranian player to win a ranking title, beating Mark Williams in the final of the Snooker Shoot Out.
  • Vafaei won the one-frame final with a break of 71 and dedicated the victory to his late grandmother.
  • It's a big achievement for a country like Iran. Nobody knew about snooker before. Now they know.
  • Wales' Williams, the three-time world champion, only got the chance to play one shot in the final with world number 42 Vafaei sinking a tricky, long red after the break-off.

Root Named ICC Men's Test Cricketer of the Year for 2021

  • England captain Joe Root was named as the ICC Men's Test Cricketer of the Year for 2021. Root beat stiff competition from New Zealand pacer Kyle Jamieson, Sri Lanka opener Dimuth Karunaratne and India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin to clinch the award.
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Jerri Hamlet First 'Milk Village' of J&K

  • In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the administration declared Jerri settlement in Reasi district as the first 'Milk Village' of the Union Territory and sanctioned 57 more dairy farms under the Integrated Dairy Development Scheme (IDDS) for the hamlet. The village, which houses 73 individual dairy units with 370 cows, will give the local farmers financial security.
  • The scheme also has a provision for milking machine, bulk milk cooling unit at 50 per cent subsidy (maximum Rs. 5 lakh), paneer making machine, khoya making, Dahi making, cream separator, ice cream making machine, butter and ghee making machine (max subsidy Rs. 3. 5 lakh), milk van (maximum subsidy Rs. 2 lakh), milk ATM subsidy of Rs. 5 lakh.

Punjab polls: BJP Announces Seat-sharing with Amarinder

  • The National Democratic Alliance (NDA), led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), announced its seat-sharing formula for the upcoming Punjab assembly election.
  • According to the division, the BJP is set to contest the Punjab polls on 65 seats, while the Punjab Lok Congress, led by former Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, will field candidates on 37 constituencies.

J&K LG Approves 15% Reservation for Women in Non-gazetted Police Posts

  • Jammu and Kashmir Lt Governor Manoj Sinha approved 15 per cent reservation for women in non-gazetted police posts.
  • Sinha announced the reservation coinciding with the National Girl Child Day, asserting that this is just the beginning.
  • "For women and girls to be agents of change, J&K government is committed to ensure Nari Shaktis' social and economic empowerment while redressing long-standing inequalities to build a more just and resilient society", Sinha said.
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Iran, Russia, China Begin Joint Naval Drill

  • Iran, Russia and China began a joint naval drill in the Indian Ocean aimed at boosting marine security.
  • Iran's 11 vessels were joined by three Russian ships, including a destroyer, and two Chinese vessels. Iran's Revolutionary Guard will also participate with smaller ships and helicopters.
  • The manoeuvre would cover some 17,000 square km in the Indian Ocean's north, and include night fighting, rescue operations and firefighting drills. This is the third joint naval drill between the countries since 2019.

NATO Partners Hold Maritime Drills in Mediterranean Sea

  • The NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) member countries started conducting a 12-day maritime exercise in the Mediterranean Sea from January 24, 2022. The name of the maritime exercise is "Neptune Strike '22". The naval drill will end on February 04, 2022. The main purpose of this exercise is to demonstrate and test NATO's wide range of maritime capabilities.
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GoodDot Ropes in Neeraj Chopra as its Brand Ambassador

  • Plant-based meat company GoodDot roped in Neeraj Chopra as its brand ambassador. With this association, the company wants to create awareness about the new category of plant-based meats. It also wants to send out a message that small changes in lifestyle and food choices can go a long way in making the world a better place.
  • The company provides alternatives to mutton, chicken and eggs and is a Direct-to-consumer (D2C) player so far and sells also through online marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, etc. It also sells in countries like Canada, Singapore, Nepal, Dubai, South Africa, Mauritius, and Oman.
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National Voters' Day

  • The National Voters' Day is celebrated every year on January 25 to encourage the country's voters to participate in the electoral process. The year 2022 saw the 12th edition of National Voters' Day.
  • The first-ever National Voters' Day was celebrated on January 25, 2011, to encourage more young voters to take part in the electoral process. The Union Government, then led by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, approved a proposal of the law ministry to this effect.
  • The theme for 2022 National Voters' Day was 'Making Elections Inclusive, Accessible and Participative'.
  • Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju was the Guest of Honour. During the event, National Awards for the Best Electoral Practises for the year 2021-22 were given to state and district level officers for their outstanding performance in the conduct of elections in different areas.

Himachal Pradesh Celebrates its Golden Jubilee Statehood Day

  •  PM Modi greeted people of Himachal Pradesh on its statehood day on January 25.
  • On December 18, 1970, the state of Himachal Pradesh Act was passed by Parliament, and the news state came into being on January 25, 1971.
  • Himachal Pradesh became the 18th state of the Indian Union with Dr. Yashwant Singh Parmar as its first Chief Minister.

National Tourism Day 2022

  • National Tourism Day is celebrated across the country on January 25 every year to appreciate India's beauty and spread awareness about the importance of tourism and its impact on the economy. The ministry of tourism observed National Tourism Day 2022 under the aegis of 'Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav', a 75-week grand celebration to mark 75 years of India's independence. The theme for National Tourism Day 2022 was 'Rural and Community Centric Tourism'.
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Twenty-nine Children Get Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave away the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar to 29 students from various fields, including Innovation (7), Social Service (4), Scholastic (1), Sports (8), Art & Culture (6), and Bravery (3) categories. There are 15 boys and 14 girls among the awardees belonging to 21 states and UTs.
  • The event was attended by the awardees and the concerned District Magistrate of their respective place. The function was held virtually on the occasion of National Girl Child Day today and also as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave digital certificates to the 61 winners of PMRBP 2021 and 2022 using a Block Chain-driven technology developed by IIT Kanpur under the National Blockchain Project.
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IGNOU Signs MoU with Skill Development ministry to Integrate Skill Training with Higher Education

  • GNOU signed an MoU with the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) to help integrate skill training with higher education.
  • With this MoU, the trainees affiliated to National Skill Training Institutes, Industrial Training Institutes, Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras and Jan Shikshan Sansthans will get a chance to join IGNOU's 3-year degree programme for higher education.
  • The aim of this MoU between Indira Gandhi National Open University and the skill development ministry is to make higher education, better livelihood opportunities available to these students which will lead to an upward mobility for them.
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Jamia Millia Islamia to host three-day International Conference on Tourism and Hospitality Entrepreneurship

  • The Department of Tourism and Hospitality Management, Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) will organise a three-day International Conference on "Enterprise and Entrepreneurialism in Tourism and Hospitality" between January 28 to 30, 2022. The virtual conference would be attended by the prominent authorities from the Ministry of Tourism, National Tourism Associations and Academia.
  • The virtual conference will be hosted by the Vice Chancellor Prof. Najma Akhtar. "This conference will help to bring various stakeholders on a single platform to discuss future tourism trends, ideas, implications and methodologies, underlying the theoretical and practical approaches for innovation and entrepreneurial growth in the Tourism and Hospitality sector.
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