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Daily G.K. - Top Stories

13 Apr 2022

DAILY G.K. TEST

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INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

Fourth US-India 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue in Washington DC

  • Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III welcomed Ministers of Defense Rajnath Singh and External Affairs S. Jaishankar to Washington, D.C. for the fourth US-India 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue. A virtual conference between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Joseph Biden preceded the Dialogue.
  • With a shared commitment to democracy and pluralism, a multifaceted bilateral agenda, and growing convergence of strategic interests, the United States and independent India are celebrating 75 years of diplomatic relations. Both countries seek to maintain a resilient, rules-based international order that protects sovereignty and territorial integrity, upholds democratic values, and promotes peace and prosperity for all.
  • The Ministers recalled the initiatives outlined by the United States and India at the first Summit for Democracy and expressed their desire for continued cooperation in the current Year of Action leading up to the next Summit. The US expressed gratitude to India for its assistance with the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) missions in the country. The Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to DPAA missions in the future.

India, Malaysia Vow to Deepen Ties, Intensify Cooperation in Various Fields

  • India and Malaysia reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations and hoped for faster revival of ties in the post-Covid period, taking into account the shared commitment of both sides to further intensify cooperation in a wide range of areas. The two countries vowed to deepen ties at the 5th Foreign Office Consultations at Putrajaya, Malaysia, that were co-chaired by Saurabh Kumar, Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs, and Amran Bin Mohamed Zin, Deputy Secretary General for Bilateral Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia. The Foreign Office Consultations provided an opportunity to review the entire gamut of bilateral relations and exchange views on contemporary regional and global issues of mutual interest.
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BUSINESS AND ECONOMY

Tata AIA Life Insurance Ties up with Common Service Centres

  • As part of its effort to deliver much-needed life insurance protection cover to rural households and safeguard their loved ones from life's uncertainties, Tata AIA Life Insurance Co Ltd partnered with Common Services Centres under the Ministry of Electronics & IT. Common Service Centres which will provide access to about 95 per cent of gram panchayats in the country.
  • With this tie up, the company can engage into the network of over 4 lakh Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs) at the last mile for distribution of life insurance plan.

Avon Celebrates 70 Years with Prestigious Brands of Asia Award Win

  • To mark 70 years of existence Avon invited its top dealers from all over the country and honored them by thanking and rewarding for their association. Started by Pahwa brothers, Avon rolled its first batch of bicycles in the year 1952. Avon has emerged as a strong and reliable player in the bicycle industry with over 200 models for all age groups and categories.
  • Avon has been awarded as Prestigious Brands of Asia Award. Avon expanded its footprints to segments of electric mobility by launching electric scooters & rickshaws under the brand E World of Avon & Fitness Equipment under Avon Fitness Machines.

PNB, IDBI Bank Get Govt-appointed Directors

  • The government nominated new directors on the boards of Punjab National Bank (PNB) and IDBI Bank, following the cessation of the terms of incumbent directors.
  • Pankaj Sharma was nominated as a director of PNB through a notification dated April 11, 2022 with immediate effect and until further orders.
  • The government, vide a communication on April 11, 2022 nominated Manoj Sahay and Sushil Kumar Singh as directors on the board of the IDBI bank vice Meera Swamp and Anshuman Sharma respectively, with immediate effect and until further orders.
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SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

SpaceX, NASA Aim to Launch Crew-4 Mission to ISS No Earlier than April 23

  • NASA and SpaceX now are targeting no earlier than April 23, for the launch of the agency's Crew-4 mission to the International Space Station from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
  • The date provides the agencies time to complete final prelaunch processing for the Crew-4 mission following the launch of the Axiom Mission 1 to the ISS on April 8, 2022.
  • NASA will conduct a flight readiness review, which will focus on the preparedness of SpaceX's crew transportation system, the ISS, and its international partners supporting the flight.
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SPORTS

1st Khelo India National Ranking Women Archery Tournament Held in Jamshedpur

  • The Sports Authority of India approved a total amount of Rs. 75 Lakh to host the Khelo India National Ranking Women Archery Tournament over six phases. TATA Archery Academy, Jamshedpur (Jharkhand) hosted the first phase of the tournament on April 12 and 13.
  • The tournament was held across the Recurve and Compound events in the senior, Junior and Cadet Categories, and was conducted as per the World Archery Rules. The Archery Association of India (AAI), in collaboration with the Jharkhand Archery Association and TATA Steel, are organising the tournament.
  • The six Women's National Ranking tournaments will be held every alternate month with the final phase scheduled for December 2022. The cumulative points of the 5 phases shall be calculated to arrive at the ranking of the top 16 archers for the final phase in December wherein the top 16 archers shall be given cash awards, amounting to a total of Rs. 37.5 Lakh.

Boxers Get a Gold Rush in Thailand

  • Indian boxers Govind Sahani (48 kg), Ananta Pralhad Chopade (54 kg) and Sumit (75 kg) struck gold at the Thailand Open in Phuket, notching up comprehensive wins in their final bouts.
  • Sahani and Sumit dominated their bouts from start to finish and won with 5-0 margins against local pugilists Natthaphon Thuamcharoen and Peetapat Yeasungnoen, respectively.
  • Chopade, on the other hand, displayed a good mix of aggression and defence to topple Thai boxer Ritthiamon Saengsawang by a unanimous decision.
  • The Indian contingent bettered its last edition's haul of eight medals — bringing home 10 medals, including three gold, four silver, and three bronze, with three boxers yet to fight in their final bouts.

BCCI Secretary Jay Shah Appointed as Member Board Representative of ICC Cricket Committee

  • BCCI secretary Jay Shah was appointed to the ICC Cricket Committee as the Member Board Representative while Mahela Jayawardene was reappointed as Past Player representative.
  • In line with a previous recommendation from the ICC Men's Cricket Committee, the CEC agreed that more neutral match officials should be utilised as travel restrictions are lifted while building on the success of the use of home umpires.
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NATIONAL AFFAIRS

Union Minister Amit Shah Inaugurates Seema Darshan Project at Indo-Pak Border

  • Union Home and Cooperative Minister, Amit Shah inaugurated the Seema Darshan Project at Nadabet on the Indo-Pak border in Banaskantha District of Gujarat. The project was launched with the aim to provide an opportunity for the citizen to observe the life and work of the BSF personnel on our border. The tourist can see missiles, tanks, aircraft etc which are used by the Indian Army and BSF at Nadabet.
  • Under the Seema Darshan Project, Nadabet, located on the India-Pakistan border, is being developed as a tourist attraction destination at a cost of Rs 125 crore by the state tourism department.

BJP Sweeps UP Legislative Council Polls; SP Draws a Blank

  • The BJP swept the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council elections, winning 33 of the 36 constituencies and crossing the half way mark in the Upper House of the Assembly.
  • Before the elections, the BJP had 34 members out of 100 in the UP Legislative Council. The party's numbers swelled to 67 taking it past the simple majority.
  • The SP had to bite the dust despite the Congress and BSP abstaining from elections to help consolidate the Opposition vote. Two Independents and one candidate from the Jansatta Dal Loktantrik won.

India Ready to Supply Food Stock to World if WTO Gives Nod

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his talk with US President Joe Biden, he offered to supply India's food stock to the world if the World Trade Organisation (WTO) accords permission. The world is facing an uncertain situation as nobody is getting what they want. Petrol, oil and fertilizers are hard to procure as all the doors are getting closed. Everybody wants to secure their stocks after this (Russia-Ukraine) war began, Modi said.
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DAYS AND EVENTS

38th Siachen Day

  • Indian Army marks Siachen Day on April 13 every year. The day is observed to commemorate the courage of the Indian Army under "Operation Meghdoot". The Day also honours Siachen Warriors serving their motherland successfully from the enemy. Every year this day is observed to pay solemn tributes to the soldiers who laid down their lives to capture the icy heights of Siachen 38 years ago. The day commemorates the courage and fortitude displayed by Indian Army troops in securing the highest and coldest battlefield in the world.
  • The Siachen Glacier is the highest battleground on earth, where India and Pakistan have fought intermittently since 1984. Both countries maintain a permanent military presence in the region at a height of over 6,000 metres (20,000 ft). More than 2,000 soldiers people have died in this inhospitable terrain, mostly due to weather extremes and the natural hazards of mountain warfare.
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AWARDS AND HONOURS

Nykaa CEO Falguni Nayar is EY Entrepreneur of the Year for 2021

  • Falguni Nayar, the chief executive officer and founder of beauty supply company Nykaa, was named the EY Entrepreneur of the Year for 2021. Nayar will represent India at the EY World Entrepreneur of the Year Award on June 9.
  • Nayar, who was an investment banker before becoming an entrepreneur, disrupted a brick-and-mortar industry by taking a digital route to sell beauty products in 2012. Nykaa is among profitable start-ups in the country.
  • Nayar was also the recipient of the EY Entrepreneur of The Year Award in the Start-up category in 2019.
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GOVERNMENT POLICIES AND SCHEMES

Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry Launches 'SVANidhi se Samriddhi'

  • Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry launched 'SVANidhi se Samriddhi' program in additional 126 cities across 14 States and Union Territories. With the expansion of scheme, 28 lakh street vendors and their families will be benefited. SVANidhi se Samriddhi, an additional program of PM-SVANidhi was launched in January 2022 in 125 cities in Phase one, covering approximately 35 lakh street vendors and their families.
  • Considering the success of Phase one, the Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry has launched the program in additional cities with a total target of 20 lakh scheme sanctions for this fiscal year. The Ministry has been implementing Prime Minister Street Vendors AtmaNirbhar Nidhi scheme since June 2020.
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GENDER/ HEALTH/ EDUCATION

Now, Students can Opt for Two Degree Courses at Same Time

  • Students can now pursue two full-time degree programmes simultaneously at the undergraduate and postgraduate level, either in physical or online mode or in combination.
  • The UGC approved simultaneous dual degree courses for students in India, allowing them to complete courses either at the same university or from different universities at the same time, University Grants Commission Chairman M. Jagadesh Kumar said, adding that the UGC would soon issue detailed guidelines in this regard.
  • Two full-time programmes can be taken up in physical mode provided class timings do not overlap. For example, a student can pursue BCom classes in the morning and BA classes in the evening.

SC Asks FTII to Allow Candidates with Colour Blindness to Pursue Filmmaking

  • The Supreme Court directed the Pune-based Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) to allow candidates suffering from colour blindness to pursue all courses on filmmaking and editing, saying there was a need to adopt a more inclusive and progressive approach to the matter.
  • It said no discrimination be made based on colour blindness for getting admission in the institute as it is not a form of blindness but a deficiency.
  • The authorities cited FTII rules which state that colour blind candidates are not fit for admission in a few courses, including film editing. Kumar had moved the high court in 2016 against rejection of admission but failed to get a reprieve.
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TOURISM AND HOTEL INDUSTRY AWARENESS

Airports Council International: Atlanta Busiest Airport of the World

  • Atlanta and Dubai occupied the top two positions on the list while India's Delhi airport moved up by six places to the third spot. While London Heathrow moved up by 8 places to find a spot for the first time this year, Tokyo Haneda re-entered the list and occupied the 10th spot.
  • Once again, the United States dominated the list with five airports making more than half the seats in the top 10 rankings. According to the release, "the growth of the US airports came at the expense of Asian presence in the Global Top 10 as some of the big global airports of 2019, such as Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai slide down from their 2019 positions affected by travel restrictions." Guangzhou is the only Chinese airport to make it to the top ten list.
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