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Daily G.K. - Top Stories

28 Apr 2022

DAILY G.K. TEST

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INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

Deepika Padukone to be Part of Cannes Film Festival Jury

  • Actress Deepika Padukone will be a part of the competition jury at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival. French actor Vincent Lindon will be heading the jury at the 75th edition of the coveted festival, which will run from May 17-28. Padukone is part of the eight-member jury which will reward one of the 21 films in competition with the Palme d'or during the closing ceremony on Saturday May 28. Padukone, 36, was earlier the chairperson of Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival for two years.
  • She found fame with her 2007 film "Om Shanti Om", co-starring Shah Rukh Khan, and later featured in several blockbuster and critically-acclaimed movies like "Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani", "Chennai Express", "Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela", "Bajirao Mastani", "Padmaavat" and "Piku".

Cabinet Approves Opening of Indian Mission in Lithuania

  • The Cabinet accorded approval to the opening of a new Indian Mission in Lithuania in 2022. The Opening of Indian Mission in Lithuania will help expand India's diplomatic footprint, deepen political relations and strategic cooperation, enable growth of bilateral trade, investment and economic engagements.
  • The decision comes at a time when the Baltic nation is facing an unofficial trade embargo by Beijing for not following the One China policy. Lithuania incurred the wrath of China after it allowed Taiwan to open a representative office in capital Vilnius. The opening of the mission will, among other things, facilitate India's trade with Lithuania. The proposal was finally approved after years of consideration.
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ENVIRONMENT

German-funded Consortium to Develop 'Battery Passport' for Europe

  • German-funded consortium of carmakers and battery producers, including BMW, Umicore and BASF, is to develop a "battery passport" that traces the content and carbon footprint of batteries in Europe. A European Commission proposal due to be discussed later in 2022 states that rechargeable electric vehicles, light transport and industrial batteries sold in Europe must disclose their carbon footprint from 2024 and comply with a CO2 emissions limit from 2027.
  • They must also disclose the content of recycled raw materials in those batteries from 2027, followed by requirements to use a minimum share of recycled cobalt, lithium, nickel and lead from 2030.
  • Batteries could carry a QR code linking to an online database where EV owners, businesses or regulators could access information on the battery's composition.
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BUSINESS AND ECONOMY

NASSCOM Appoints Krishnan Ramanujam as Chairperson for 2022-23

  • IT industry body NASSCOM appointed Krishnan Ramanujam, a senior executive at Tata Consultancy Services, as its Chairperson for 2022-23. Earlier, Krishnan was the Vice Chairperson of the body. He succeeded Accenture's Senior Managing Director in India Rekha M. Menon, who had served as the Chairperson for 2021-22. NASSCOM (National Association of Software and Services Companies) appointed Anant Maheshwari, President of Microsoft India, as the Vice Chairperson for 2022-23.
  • The new leadership, along with President Debjani Ghosh, will lead NASSCOM to carry out its diverse array of priorities to achieve the 2025 vision for the industry.
  • At Tata Consultancy Services, Ramanujam heads the enterprise growth group.

Airtel Payments Bank Offers FD Facility with IndusInd Bank

  • Airtel Payments Bank partnered with IndusInd Bank to offer fixed deposit (FD) facilities to its customers. Customers can now book fixed deposits starting from Rs. 500 up to Rs. 190,000 within minutes through a seamless digital journey on the Airtel Thanks app. With this partnership, Airtel Payments Bank's savings account customers will get an interest rate of up to 6.5 per cent per annum and senior citizens will get an additional 0.5 per cent on all fixed deposits.
  • Customers can book multiple FDs for a fixed duration of either 1, 2 or 3 years. Customers can dissolve an FD before the maturity date through the Airtel Thanks app, and no penalty or processing fee will be charged on pre-mature withdrawals. The invested amount will be credited back to the linked account within minutes.

TVS Motor, Rapido Sign Pact to Strengthen Hyper-local Mobility

  • TVS Motor Company announced a strategic partnership with auto and bike taxi aggregator Rapido to leverage synergies of their respective businesses in the fast moving mobility market. Hyper-local mobility, buoyed by an increasing urban population with ready access to smartphones and increasing penetration of e-commerce and on-demand services, had boomed into a potential $158 billion opportunity.
  • This comprehensive partnership would cover both two-wheeler and three-wheelers and extend across ICE and EV segments. Further, the MoU is in line with TVS Motor's expansion of electric product portfolio ranging from 5-25kW for two-and three-wheelers. These are expected to be unveiled by mid-2023.
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SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

MoS Rajeev Chandrasekhar Launches Digital India RISC-V Microprocessor (DIR-V) Program

  • Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar launched Digital India RISC-V Microprocessor (DIR-V) Program. Its overall aim is to enable the creation of Microprocessors for the future in India, for the world and achieve industry-grade silicon and Design wins by December 2023.
  • Launching the program in New Delhi Mr. Chandrasekhar mentioned that DIR-V program will see partnerships between Startups, Academia and Multinationals, to make India not only a RISC-V Talent Hub for the World but also supplier of RISC-V System on Chips for Servers, Mobile devices, Automotive and Microcontrollers across the globe.
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SPORTS

Nehal Wadhera Sets New Record, Smashes 578 Runs

  • Wadhera bested the 66-year-old record for the highest total in a state-organised tournament, which was previously held by former Punjab cricketer Chaman Lal Malhotra. He also made it to the list of the all-time highest individual scorers in any format of cricket globally at No. 3. The 21-year-old, representing Ludhiana, smashed 578 against Bathinda U-23 in the semifinals of the Punjab State Inter-district tournament at the GRD Cricket Ground in Ludhiana. Nehal is a former member of the Indian U-19 team. During the tour to Sri Lanka in July 2018, he had struck two half-centuries, including 81 on his international U-19 debut. In the 2017-18 Cooch Behar Trophy, he had made 540 runs with six half-centuries.
  • A score of the magnitude of 578 in 414 balls i.e at a strike rate of 139 is unheard of in long cricket history in the world. Nehal hit (79) 4s and (37) 6s which is maximum in a single innings in cricket history.
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NATIONAL AFFAIRS

Governor of Uttarakhand Lt General Gurmit Singh Flagged-off "BRO@63" Multi-Dimensional Expedition

  • Governor of Uttarakhand, Lt General Gurmit Singh flagged-off the "BRO@63" Multi-Dimensional Expedition from Dehradun. The expedition, a tribute to the grit & determination of the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) Karamyogis, was organised as part of the events leading to the 63rd Raising Day of the organisation, which is slated on May 07, 2022. It is also one, in the series of events organised by the BRO celebrating Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav.
  • The Multi-dimensional Expedition includes four distinct activities, i.e., a Mountaineering Trek to the 15,000 feet Pangarchula Peak covering a distance of approximately 50 Kilometres, River Rafting in the rapids of River Ganga for 35 Kilometres, Cyclothon from Dehradun to Delhi via Chandigarh covering a distance of 591 Kilometres and Fit BRO Endurance Run from Roorkee to Delhi covering a distance of 211 Kilometres.

Cabinet Approves Upgradation of 2G Mobile Sites to 4G at Security Sites in Left Wing Extremism (LWE) Areas

  • The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved a Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) project for upgrading 2G mobile services to 4G at security sites in LWE areas. The Project envisages upgrading 2,343 left Wing Extremism Phase-I sites from 2G to 4G mobile services at an estimated cost of Rs.1,884.59 crore (Excluding taxes and levies).
  • Government chose BSNL for a prestigious project to indigenous 4G telecom equipment so as to achieve self-reliance in the telecom gear segment to fulfil domestic market needs apart from exporting to other markets. This 4G equipment will be deployed in this project also.

Veteran Congress leader A.K. Antony Bids Farewell to Parliamentary Politics

  • Veteran Congress leader A.K. Antony bid farewell to parliamentary politics and Delhi after spending 38 years in five stints in the Rajya Sabha. At 81 years, with a formidable CV behind him, the former Defence Minister want to slowly withdraw from national politics too. For now, he will continue in all positions within the Congress, including the Congress Working Committee (CWC).
  • He came to Delhi for the first time in 1973 as a 33-year-old Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president (elect) to meet Indira Gandhi. He was the youngest president of the Kerala unit, a record that still remains unbroken.
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PERSONS IN NEWS

Former India Women's Hockey Captain Elvera Britto Passes Away

  • Former Indian women's hockey team captain Elvera Britto died due to old age related problems. She was 81. Elvera, the eldest of the three famous Britto sisters (others are Rita and Mae), ruled the domestic circuit from 1960 to 1967, guiding Karnataka to seven national titles.
  • She represented India against Australia, Sri Lanka and Japan. In 1965, Elvera became only the second woman hockey player to be conferred with the Arjuna Award after Anne Lumsden (1961).

Padma Shri Structural Biologist M. Vijayan Passes Away

  • Eminent structural biologist M. Vijayan, DAE Homi Bhabha Professor at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), passed away in Bengaluru. Vijayan, who was instrumental in the development of macromolecular crystallography in India, was 80.
  • Born in Cherpu, Thrissur, in 1941, Prof. Vijayan graduated from the Kerala Varma College, and continued his studies at Allahabad University, before pursuing his PhD in X-ray Crystallography from IISc, Bangalore. A recipient of the Padma Shri and Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize, Prof. Vijayan was the president of the Indian National Science Academy from 2007 to 2010.
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DAYS AND EVENTS

World Day for Safety and Health at Work

  • World Day for Safety and Health at Work is observed on 28 April every year by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) since 2003. This day marks how to improve occupational safety, health and looks for continuing these efforts through several changes like technology, demographics, climate change, etc.
  • The annual World Day for Safety and Health at Work promotes the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases globally. It is an awareness-raising campaign intended to focus international attention on the magnitude of the problem and on how promoting and creating a safety and health culture can help reduce the number of work-related deaths and injuries.
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AWARDS AND HONOURS

Meghalaya E-proposal System Wins Prestigious UN Award

  • Meghalaya's Planning Department's key initiative of e-Proposal System, part of Meghalaya Enterprise Architecture (MeghEA) wins coveted UN Award – World Summit on the Information Society Forum (WSIS) Prizes 2022. CM Conrad K Sangma in 2019 initiated MeghEA, which is being implemented by the Planning Department, Government of Meghalaya.
  • The government's e-Proposal system automates sanctions & administrative approvals of all the departments & directorates in Meghalaya and delivers Government services with desired outcomes to all the citizens and other stakeholders across the State of Meghalaya in an integrated and seamless manner. It eliminates 75% of physical files in Government departments.
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GOVERNMENT POLICIES AND SCHEMES

PM Street Vendor's Scheme (SVANidhi) to Continue Till December 2024

  • The Centre approved the continuation of the Prime Minister Street Vendor's AtmaNirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) scheme till December 2024. The approval was given by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In PM SVANidhi, affordable collateral-free loans are given to street vendors. The approval increased the loan amount to Rs 8,100 crore, thereby providing the street vendors working capital to further expand their business and making them AtmaNirbhar.
  • The budget for the promotion of digital payments, including cashback to the vendors, has also been enhanced. The approval is expected to benefit nearly 1.2 crore people in urban India.
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GENDER/ HEALTH/ EDUCATION

Kerala to Gender Audit School Textbooks

  • In a bid to eliminate representations that reinforce gender stereotyping and role classification in society, Kerala is all set to undertake a gender audit of school textbooks in the present curriculum. Being a primary tool of learning, textbooks play a significant role in forming values and attitudes. However, in the absence of accurate depictions, they can also lead to various biases. It is against this backdrop that the gender audit of school textbooks is being taken up on the directions of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan through the Vidyakiranam Mission and being implemented by the State Council of Educational Research and Technology (SCERT).
  • The State has already achieved gender equality in school enrolment, with nearly half the children in schools being girls. The council, though, wants to ensure that gender equality is maintained in textbook content and design, besides when the content is reviewed too.

Centre Scraps MP, DM Quota for Admissions to Kendriya Vidyalaya Schools

  • The Education Ministry scrapped quotas in several categories including that of Member of Parliament (MP) and District Magistrate (DM) for admissions to Kendriya Vidyalayas, according to the latest circular issued by the Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (KVS). Earlier, the KVS had put on hold all discretionary quotas, including the MP quota, for admissions to KV schools across the country, following a review.
  • Meanwhile, a KV official also informed that the provision of admission under quota will still continue for some categories including single girl children, orphaned kids, etc. A small number of discretionary quotas for wards of Kashmiri migrants, paramilitary forces, intelligence agencies, etc. still continue. Moreover, children of serving employees of KVs, meritorious children in fine arts, sports, recipients of bravery awards, etc. shall also continue to be provided admission under discretionary quota.

WHO Alert over Gastro Disease Linked to Belgian Chocolates

  • The World Health Organisation (WHO) issued a multi-country alert on the outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium linked to Belgian chocolates. Salmonella Typhimurium is a gastroenteritis-causing pathogen. A global alert was earlier released by the International Food Safety Authorities Network initiating a global product recall. Molecular typing confirmed isolation of the bacteria S Typhimurium sequence typing 34 (which is multidrug resistant) and epidemiological evidence has subsequently linked the outbreak to chocolate products from Belgium, which, as of April 25, have been distributed to at least 113 countries across all WHO regions, the world body warned.
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ART AND CULTURE

Divya Kala Shakti Cultural Event Held At Mumbai

  • The colorful cultural event "Divya Kala Shakti: Witnessing the Abilities in Disabilities" was organized, by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (MSJ&E), Govt. of India in Mumbai. The inauguration began with the Indian National Anthem in Indian Sign Language was followed by a continuous demonstration of potentials of 86 children who are differently abled, in a colourful display of stage through fifteen unique events in the form of dance, music, puppetry, acrobatics etc. in classical, folk and modern style.
  • The children and youth with different disabilities from the states in the western region such as Maharashtra, Goa, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, and Daman & Diu participated in this event.
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