By admin: Dec. 19, 2021
Tags: Important Days
12th December: International Universal Health Coverage Day
- Theme of the International Universal Health Coverage Day 2021 : Leave No One Behind When It Comes to Health: Invest in Health Systems for All”.
14th December: National Energy Conservation Day
2021 Theme: “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav: Energy Efficient India” and “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav: Cleaner Planet”
16th December: Vijay Diwas
Vijay Diwas is celebrated on December 16 every year to honour the victory of Indian armed forces over Pakistan in the 1971 war.
- It is also quite a big day for Bangladesh, as it earned status as an independent entity. The day is celebrated in Bangladesh as ‘Bijoy Dibos.
18th December: International Migrants Day
2021 Theme: Harnessing the potential of Human Mobility
1. Prime Minister inaugurates Saryu Nahar National Project
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the ₹9,800 crore Saryu Nahar National Project in Balrampur district of Uttar Pradesh.
- The 6,623-kilometre-long canal system will provide assured water for irrigation of over 14 lakh hectares of land to the benefit of about 29 lakh farmers of nine districts in the region – Bahraich, Shravasti, Gonda, Balrampur, Siddharthnagar, Basti, Sant Kabir Nagar, Gorakhpur, and Maharajganj.
- Five rivers—Ghagra, Saryu, Rapti, Banganga, and Rohini—have been interlinked under the project to ensure optimum usage of water resources of the region.
2. Vice President Inaugurates exhibition on `Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat` in Hyderabad
- The Vice President of India Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated an exhibition on ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ (EBSB) in Hyderabad city on 12 December 2021.
- Exhibition has been organised by the Regional Outreach Bureau, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
- This exhibition would highlight the various interesting aspects of the paired states of Haryana and Telangana like art forms, cuisine, festivals, monuments, tourism spots etc,
- The Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat (EBSB) programme was launched by the Prime Minister on 31st October, 2015 on the occasion of the 140th birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, is a unique initiative by the Government to promote the spirit of national integration and to strengthen the fabric of emotional bonds between the people of our country.
3. India International Science Festival 2021
- Theme of the 7th IISF :"Celebrating Creativity, Science, Technology and Innovation for a prosperous India .
- The Festival is being held at Panaji, Goa from 10-13 December 2021.
- IISF 2021 is being organised jointly by the Ministry of Earth Science, Department of Science and Technology, Department of Biotechnology, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, in collaboration with Vijnana Bharati.
4. PM Inaugurates Kashi Vishwanath Corridor
- The Prime Minister inaugurated the 400 metre long Kashi Vishwanath Corridor in Varanasi connecting the ancient temple to the western banks of the Ganges on13 December.
- The ₹800-crore project started with Mr. Modi laying the foundation stone on March 8, 2019
- The project cost is Rs 339 Crores and is spread over a massive area of about 5 lakh square feet.
- The architect of the project is Mr. Bimal Patel.
5. Swarnim Vijay Parv
- Inaugurated by the Defence Minister Mr. Rajnath Singh, it is a 2-day event commemorating the valor & professionalism of the Armed Forces and their contribution to the liberation of Bangladesh in the Indo-Pak 1971 war, at India Gate Lawns in New Delhi. It marks 50 years of India's victory in the war.
- It will also mark the culmination of the year-long journey of the Victory Flame, the Swarnim Vijay Mashal which, having traversed the length and breadth of the country and collected soil samples from the villages of the gallant soldiers of the war.
6. India’s Harnaaz Sandhu crowned Miss Universe 2021
- Punjab’s Harnaaz Sandhu (21) won the Miss Universe 2021 pageant on 12 December 2021, beating contestants from 79 countries to bring the title back to India after 21 years.
- Nadia Ferreira of Paraguay was the first Runners Up.
- The 70th edition of the event was held in Israel’s resort town of Eilat.
7. Chola Sarva Shakti Policy launched by Equitas Bank for women
- Equitas Small Finance Bank Ltd. has partnered with Cholamandalam MS General Insurance to introduce the Chola Sarva Shakti Policy, a women-specific health insurance policy.
- Any Employed /Self Employed/ Unemployed Woman in the age group of 18 -65 years who is a resident of India can buy the policy.
- The policy is of Cholamandalam General Insurance which will also be sold through the Equitas branch to the bank account holder of the Equitas bank.
- Equitas Small Finance bank was founded in 2016 with its headquarters at Chennai.
8. PM addresses depositors in “Depositors First” programme
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi addressed a function on “Depositors First: Guaranteed Time-bound Deposit Insurance Payment up to Rs. 5 Lakh” in New Delhi on 12th December 2021. Union Finance Minister Mrs Nirmala Sitharaman , and RBI Governor Mr. Shakti Kanta Das were among those present on the occasion.
- Deposit insurance covers all deposits such as savings, fixed, current, recurring deposits, etc. in all commercial banks, functioning in India. Deposits in State, Central and Primary cooperative banks, functioning in States/Union Territories are also covered. In a path breaking reform, Bank deposit insurance cover was enhanced from Rs. 1 lakh to Rs. 5 lakh.
- Earlier where there was no time limit for refund, now the government has made it mandatory within 90 days i.e. 3 months. That is, even in the event of a bank failing , the depositors will get their money back within 90 days.
- With deposit insurance coverage of Rs. 5 lakh per depositor per bank, the number of fully protected accounts at end of previous financial year constituted 98.1% of the total number of accounts, as against the international benchmark of 80%.
9. Over half of UAPA detainees are under 30 age
The Union Home Minister Mr. Amit Shah informed the Lok Sabha that:
- Nearly 53% of persons arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) 1967, in 2018, 2019, and 2020 were below the age of 30.
- In 2020, the maximum number of arrests under UAPA of persons below 30 years of age was made in Uttar Pradesh (205) followed by Jammu and Kashmir (166), Manipur (113), and Jharkhand (35).
10. Border disputes between States and Union Territory
The Union Home Ministry has informed the Lok Sabha that 11 States and one Union Territory have boundary disputes between them arising out of demarcation of boundaries and claims and counterclaims over territories.
The following states and UT’s are involved in border disputes-
- Andhra Pradesh-Odisha,
- Haryana-Himachal Pradesh,
- Union Territories of Ladakh-Himachal Pradesh,
- Assam-Arunachal Pradesh,
Union Home Minister - Amit Shah
Union Home Secretary - Ajay Kumar Bhalla
11. Supreme Court directed all States and UT’s to issue ration cards to sex workers
- The Supreme Court directed States and Union Territories to immediately start the process of issuing voter ID cards, Aadhaar and ration cards to sex workers across the country.
- The Supreme Court observed that every person is guaranteed their fundamental rights irrespective of vocation (type of work or a way of life of an individual). Depriving any individual of availing the same is an abridgment of their fundamental rights guaranteed by the Indian Constitution.
- The court directed that authorities can take assistance from the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) and State AIDS control societies, which would, in turn, prepare a list of sex workers after verifying the information provided to them by community-based organizations.
12. World famous Durga Puja of Bengal Included in the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list
- The UNESCO Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage has included ‘Durga Puja in Kolkata’ on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity during its 16th session, held virtually from 13 to 18 December 2021.
- Durga Puja is an annual festival celebrated in September or October, most notably in Kolkata, in West Bengal of India, but also in other parts of India and amongst the Bengali diaspora. It marks the ten-day worship of the Hindu mother-goddess Durga from Mahalaya to Vijaya Dashami.
13. President Ramnath Kovind on a 3-day State Visit to Bangladesh
Indian President Ramnath Kovind was on a 3-day State visit to Bangladesh from December 15 to 17, 2021.
- Bangladesh is observing the golden jubilee celebrations of its independence from Pakistan in 1971. Notably, President Kovind is the only foreign head of state invited to join the celebrations.
- He visited the National Martyrs’ Memorial and paid tributes to the martyrs of the Liberation War of Bangladesh. The Indian President also planted an ‘Ashoka’ sapling at the memorial garden.
- Subsequently, he visited the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum,Dhaka where he paid homage to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the Father of the nation of Bangladesh.
- The President will also witness the Victory Day parade and attend the Victory Day reception hosted by the President of Bangladesh to mark the conclusion of the "Mujib Borsho (March 17, 2020, to December 16, 2021)” celebrations.
“Swarnim Vijay Varsh Special" Train
- Indian railway has launched a special “Swarnim Vijay Varsh train” for the visiting Bangladeshi freedom fighters (Mukti Jodha) and Armed Force personnel.
- The train which will start from Safdarjung station, Delhi will take the guests to Agra and Ajmer.
- The Bangladeshi are visiting India to take part in the events as part of the “Swarnim Vijay Varsh” celebrations organised to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war.
14. Supreme Court approves Bullock Cart Race in Maharashtra
- The Supreme Court has allowed the resumption of the traditional rural bull racing sport popular as ‘bailgada’, ‘sharyat’, ‘chakkadi’ and ‘shankar path’.
- A 2-judge Supreme Court (SC) Bench of Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and Justice C.T.Ravikumar gave the nod to resume bullock cart races in Maharashtra that were prohibited since 2017, in response to an application filed by the Maharashtra government.
- SC said the amended rules notified by the Maharashtra State under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act, 1960 would apply to the conduct of the races until a final decision of SC’s constitutional bench on the 2018 Jallikattu case arrives.
15. Foundation Literacy and Numeracy Index
The report on the State of Foundational Literacy and Numeracy in India which highlights the importance of early education years in the overall development of a child was released by the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (EAC-PM).
- Foundation Literacy and Numeracy refers to basic reading, writing, and mathematics skills of children aged below ten years in India.
- The index includes these five pillars:
(a) Educational Infrastructure,
(b) Access to Education
(c) Basic Health
(d) Learning Outcomes
States and UT (Union Territory) were grouped into four categories, i.e. Large States, Small States, Union Territories and North Eastern States.
- Among the Large State Category , West Bengal (58.95) topped the ranking followed by Tamil Nadu (55.49) and Maharashtra (53.11) and Bihar was at the bottom.
- Among the Small States category, the top ranked state was Kerala (67.95) followed by Himachal Pradesh (57.36) and Punjab (56.17).
- Among the Union Territories category, the top ranked UT was Lakshadweep (52.69) followed by Delhi (50.74) and Puducherry (50.08).
- Mizoram (51.64) is the top North-Estern State.
- The poor performing states in the overall index were Jharkhand (45.58), Odisha (45.28), Madhya Pradesh (38.69), Uttar Pradesh (38.49), Bihar (36.81).
16. National Conference on Women winning against Tuberculosis (TB)
- It was organised by the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development in New Delhi and Vice President Venkaiah Naidu was the chief guest.
- Speaking on the occasion Vice President, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, called for making people ‘key partners’ in the campaign for ‘TB Mukt Bharat’ by 2025.
- Union Minister for Women and Child Development, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani stated that in India, women account for nearly 36% of the total TB cases. TB among women often goes unreported as women do not come forward to seek medical care due to societal stigma & lack of awareness.
17. Installed Nuclear Power capacity in India
- The Government of India has informed the Parliament about the status of the Nuclear Power Plant in India.
- The present nuclear power capacity of 6780 MW is planned to be increased to 22480 MW by 2031.
- At present the share of nuclear power in the total electricity generation in the country is about 3.1% in the year 2020-21.
- Government has given approval to the setting up of six nuclear power reactors of 1650 MW each in technical cooperation with France which would make it the largest nuclear power generating site with a total capacity of 9900 MW at Jaitapur in Maharashtra.
18. CCI revoked Amazon deal with Future group
- The Competition commission of India has revoked its earlier approval to Amazon's 2019 deal with Future Coupons, a subsidiary of Kishore Biyani-led Future Group.
- In 2019, Amazon.com NV Investment Holdings, a direct subsidiary of Amazon.com Inc, signed an agreement with the Future Coupons Private Limited (FCPL) for buying 49 percent of its shares for Rs 1431 crore .
- Later ,Future Coupon Private Limited (FCPL) and the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) complained to the CCI to cancel the approval for the 2019 deal between Amazon and Future Coupons on the grounds that Amazon had “concealed facts” at the time of seeking approval for its investment.
- The CCI held Amazon guilty of concealing the facts and imposed a penalty of Rs. 200 crore on Amazon and cancel the deal
- Future Group is the owner of the popular departmental stores like Big Bazar Central etc.
19. ICMR Approved CoviDelta Diagnostic Kit
- The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has approved the CoviDelta diagnostic kit, developed indigenously by Pune based GenePath Diagnostics.
- The kit detects all current variants of COVID19 and detects Delta and Omicron variants in a single test.
- It was used to detect the presence of the first Omicron case in Pune.
20. Bill to raise women’s legal age of marriage to 21
- The Union Government next week is going to introduce “The Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021”.
- The bill will amend The Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006.
- The bill seeks to raise the legal age of marriage for women from 18 to 21 years and bring it at par with men.
Tags: State News
Punjab approach Supreme Court on BSF jurisdiction in the state
- Punjab has filed a suit in the Supreme Court against the Centre’s move to increase the limits of jurisdiction of the Border Security Force (BSF) from 15 km to 50 km along the India-Pakistan International Border.
- The State has filed an original suit challenging the October 11,2021 notification issued by the Union Home Ministry extending the Central force’s area of jurisdiction, calling it a breach of the federal form of governance under the Constitution.
Tamil Thai Vaazhthu declared Tamil Nadu State song
- The M.K.Stalin led government of Tamilnadu has declared Tamil Thai Vaazhthu song as the State song.
- The song is from the Tamil drama ‘Manonmaniam’ penned by P Sundaram Pillai.
- The song is composed in Mullaipaani Ragam also known as Mohana Raagam by M.S Viswanathan.
North India’s first Centre of Entrepreneurship in Medi Electronics and Health Informatics start operations in Lucknow
- North India’s first Centre of Entrepreneurship - “MedTech” was inaugurated by the Union Minister of State, Ministry of Electronics and IT, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajeev Chandrasekhar at the Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute , Lucknow.
- It has been built in partnership with Software technology Park of India, Ministry of Electronics and IT and Government of Uttar Pradesh.
- The centre of entrepreneurship shall provide state of the art facilities to Startups in the field of Medi electronics and health informatics providing impetus to the startup culture in the state.
- Medi electronics sector is currently estimated to be at $10 billion and is expected to grow to $50 bn by 2025.
- India imports around 75-80% of its Medi electronic and health informatics requirements.
- Health Informatics (HI) is a relatively new, interdisciplinary field in the healthcare industry that uses information technology to organize and analyze health records to improve healthcare outcomes.
All India Mayor Conference
- Prime Minister Modi inaugurated the All India Mayor Conference via video conferencing on 17 December 2021.
- The conference was organised by the Urban Development Authority, Uttar Pradesh Government.
- It is being held at Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.
- The theme of the Conference is “New Urban India”.
The longest Expressway of Uttar Pradesh
Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of the Ganga Expressway in Uttar Pradesh's Shahjahanpur on 18th December 2021.
- Length of the Ganga Expressway: 594 kilometers.
- It will connect Bijauli village near Kharkhauda on NH-334 in Meerut district with Judapur Dandu village near Soraon on NH-19 in Prayagraj district.
- It will pass through 12 districts of Uttar Pradesh namely (from west to east), Meerut, Hapur, Bulandshahr, Amroha, Sambhal, Budaun, Shahjahanpur, Hardoi, Unnao, Raebareli, Pratapgarh and Prayagraj.
- The estimated cost of the six lane expressway: Rs. 36,230 crores.
- It will be constructed by: Adani Group and IRB Infrastructure.
- Expected to be completed by: year 2025.
There will be a 3.5km long airstrip on the Ganga Expressway, which will assist in emergency take-off and landing of Indian Air Force (IAF) planes.
Tags: International News
1. G-7 Foreign and Development Ministers Meeting
- The United Kingdom, which is currently the chairman of the Group of 7 countries, hosted the foreign ministers meeting of the member countries at Liverpool in England on 11-12 December 2021.
- The meeting was held in the midst of concern that Russia is going to attack Ukraine which is denied by Russia.
- The Foreign Ministers of India, European Union, Australia, South Korea, along with representatives from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN} will take part in G-7 foreign ministers as guests.
2. India to supply medicines to the Afghan people
- The Government of India has joined Qatar, the UAE, Turkmenistan and Pakistan that have sent humanitarian support to Taliban-ruled Afghanistan.
- India has sent medical relief material to the Indira Gandhi Children Hospital in Kabul.
- The medical relief material will be handed to the WHO (World Health Organisation ) in Kabul as the Indian does not recognise the Taliban government in Kabul led by Habitullah Akhunzada .
- The relief material was sent back by special Kam Air flights that had brought 10 Indians and 94 Afghan minority community members from Afghanistan to India.
3. Saudi Arabia bans Tablighi Jamaat
- Saudi Arabia has stunned the Islamic World by banning the Tablighi Jamaat, the Islamist proselytizing(conversion) movement.
- The Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs announced the measure on its social media platform terming the Sunni Islamic organisation as "one of the gates of terrorism" and that Tablighi Jamaat poses "a danger to society".
Capital of Saudi Arabia: RIyadh
Currency: Saudi Riyal
4. Tigray rebels retake Ethiopian world heritage Lalibela
- Tigray rebels on 12th December recaptured the north Ethiopian town of Lalibela, home to a UNESCO world heritage site from the Ethiopian government forces.
- Ethiopian Civil War
- The conflict started on 4 November, when the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered a military offensive against the northern regional forces in Tigray.
- The escalation came after months of feuding between Mr Abiy's government and leaders of Tigray's dominant political party, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) .
5. New Caledonia votes to remain part of France
- Voters in the French island territory of New Caledonia chose overwhelmingly to stay part of France, in a referendum held on 12 December which was boycotted by pro-independence forces.
- Official results showed 96% of those who took part chose to stay in France. However the overall turnout was less than 44%.
- The referendum held on 12 December was the third and last in a decades-long process aimed at settling tensions between native Kanaks seeking independence and those who want the territory to remain part of France.
- Capital of New Caledonia: Noumea.
- Currency: CFP Franc
6. Israeli PM’s historic visit to UAE
- Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett arrived in the United Arab Emirates for the first ever official visit by a Prime Minister of Israel to the UAE..
- The UAE last year became the third Arab nation to establish full diplomatic relations with Israel after Egypt and Jordan.
- Bahrain and Morocco then followed as part of a series of deals referred to as Abraham Accords brokered by former U.S. President Donald Trump.
- Sudan also agreed to normalise ties with Israel under the Abraham Accords, but full relations have not yet materialised.
For details of the Abraham accord refer to the 25 November post.
7. “India” 4th Most Powerful Country in Asia
- In the Asia Power Index for 2021 that ranks 26 nations and territories in Asia- Pacific, prepared by the Lowy Institute of Sydney, India has been ranked 4th most powerful Asian country.
- Rank of the powerful countries:
- United States 82.2 points
- China 74.6
- Japan 38.7
- India 37.7
- Russia 33.0
Highlights of the report:
- India lost 2.0 points (-5% change) in overall score in 2021 (compared to 2020).
- India performed better in future resource measures where it finished behind only the United States and China.
- India finishes in 4th place in four other measures, i.e. Economic Capability, Military Capability (+0.5), Resilience (+1.7) and Cultural Influence.
- India remains in the 7th place in its “Defence Networks”, reflecting progress in its regional defence diplomacy - notably with the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue which includes: Australia, Japan and the United States.
- On the other hand, India has slipped into 8th position for economic relationships, as it falls further behind in regional trade integration efforts.
8. India votes against UN draft resolution on climate change
- India voted against a draft resolution at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) linking climate to security. This resolution was moved by Niger, which holds the UNSC presidency for December. It was also sponsored by Ireland.
- Niger organized a debate titled ‘Maintenance of international peace and security: security in the context of terrorism and climate change”. One of the objectives of the debate was to examine how terrorism and security risks could be linked to climate change.
- The resolution was vetoed by Russia even though 12 countries voted in its favour with China abstaining from the vote and India voting against it.
- Government of India’s views were put forward by India’s Permanent Representative and Ambassador to the United Nations, T.S. Tirumurti.
9. Super Typhoon Rai lashes Philippines
- Super Typhoon Rai, known locally as Odette, continued to wreak havoc across the Philippines, as the storm moved west across the archipelago, bringing with it heavy rain and widespread flooding.
- Rai, the 15th typhoon to hit the Philippines this year, weakened slightly from a Category 5 to a Category 3 storm (as per Saffir–Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale) after making landfall Thursday on Siargao Island, a popular tourist and surfing destination on the central east coast.
10. 488 journalists jailed, 46 killed across the world in 2021 - Reporters without Borders
Reporters without Borders (RSF)’s the international non-profit organization for safeguarding the right to freedom of information, has released their latest annual roundup of violence and abuse suffered by journalists across the world.
- There are currently 488 media professionals imprisoned around the world.
- The number killed this year — 46 — was the lowest since it began issuing annual tallies.
- China once again has the highest number of imprisoned journalists at 127.
- The most dangerous countries were Mexico and Afghanistan, with seven and six journalist deaths respectively, followed by Yemen and India with four deaths each.
11. The World Health Organisation has granted emergency approval to Covovax (NVX-CoV2373)
- It is manufactured by the Serum Institute of India under license from the U.S. based Novavax.
- It will be distributed as part of global vaccine sharing system COVAX(COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access).
- COVAX is a worldwide initiative through the alliance of GAVI (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and the World Health Organization (WHO).
It is the 3rd vaccine from India after CoviShield and Covaxin to receive WHO emergency use listing (EUL).
12. President Kovind inaugurates Kalibari Temple in Dhaka
President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated the renovated Sri Ramna Kali Mandir in Dhaka on 17th December 2021.
- The temple was destroyed by the Pakistani Army’s operation codenamed 'Operation Searchlight' in 1971, targeting the resistance movement in the country.
- The President and First Lady Savita Kovind offered prayers at the renovated temple.
27th The CII Partnership Summit 2021
- The 27th edition of The CII Partnership Summit is being held virtually By Confederation of Indian Industries(CII) , in partnership with the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India from 13 -15 December 2021
- Theme - Partnering for Building a New World: Growth, Competitiveness, Sustainability, Technology.
National Summit on Agro and Food Processing
- It is organised by the Government of Gujarat from 14 to 16 December 2021 at Anan d, Gujarat.
- The theme of the summit is “Agro and Food Processing: Entering a new era of Cooperation Atma Nirbhar Krishi”.
- It is being attended by over 5000 farmers who will be present in the Summit, apart from farmers being connecting Live through Central Institutes of ICAR, Krishi Vigyan Kendras and ATMA (Agricultural Technology Management Agency) network in the States.
1. NSE launches Digital Index
- NSE Indices, the subsidiary company of National Stock Exchange (NSE) has launched Nifty India Digital Index.
- This is a sector specific index which aims to track the performance of a portfolio of stocks that broadly represent the Digital theme within basic industries like software, e-commerce, IT enabled services, industrial electronics and telecom services companies.
- The Nifty Digital Index will include stocks of 30 largest companies in the chosen basic industries sectors.
- The index is expected to act as a benchmark for asset managers and be a reference index tracked by passive funds in the form of Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), index funds and structured products.
- The base date for the index is April 01, 2005 and base value is 1000. Index reconstitution will be done on a semi-annual basis.
2. WPI Inflation at 13 months high
- Wholesale Inflation in India increased to 14.2% in the November month 2021 as compared to 2.29% in November 2020.
- This was the eight successive month that saw wholesale inflation inflation in double digits.
- This was also the highest wholesale inflation since 1991.
3. ADB reduces India’s expected growth rate for 2021-22.
- The Asian Development Bank has released its Asian Development Outlook Report.
- The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has marginally lowered its growth projection for the Indian economy to 9.7% in 2021-22, from 10% estimated in September.
- The bank cited the lower than expected 8.4% growth in the July to September quarter and expects supply chain factors such as chip shortages and rising semiconductor prices to continue to suppress growth.
4. 12,892 companies removed from Registrar of Companies in 2020-21
- According to the Union Minister of State for Corporate Affairs Shri Rao Inderjit Singh, 12,982 companies' licences have been cancelled by the Registrar of Companies in 2020-21.
- Under section 248(2) of the Companies Act 2013, the Registrar of Companies has the power to remove a company from its list of companies and cancel its license.
5. Bengaluru based Neo-banking platform Open acquires Finin
- Bengaluru based, Google-backed business-focused Open has acquired consumer neobanking startup Finin for $10 million in a cash-and-stock deal.
- Open, is Asia’s first neobanking platform for SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) and startups.
- It operates an SME banking platform and also provides banks with infrastructure to launch their own digital banks.
6. PMJDY accounts increased from 60.38% in March’17 to 85.70% in November’21
- According to the Government of India the number of Pradhan Mantri Jandhan Yojana (PMJDY) account holders in India was 43.94 crore and 31.78 crore Rupay Debit card was issued to the PMJDY account holder as on 24 November 2021.
- It covers 85.70% of the household in India as of November 2021.
- It was 60.38%in March 2017.
7. RBI fines ICICI bank and PNB
- Reserve Bank of India has imposed a fine of Rs 30 lakhs on the ICICI bank for not following the RBI direction on the “levy of charges on customer for the non maintenance of minimum balance in Saving accounts “
- RBI has fined Punjab National Bank Rs 1.80 crore for not following RBI directions on holding shares of a company as collateral .
8. PSU Banks go on 2-days strike
- Bank unions under the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) have declared a nationwide strike on December 16 and 17 against the proposed privatisation of two public sector banks (PSBs).
- The Public sector bank unions demand that the government withdraw the Banking Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021.
- The Banking Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021 (has not been introduced in the parliament) will enable the privatisation of the two public sector banks in India.
- NITI Aayog has shortlisted Indian Overseas Bank and Central Bank of India for the proposed privatisation of the public sector banks.
- The strike has been called by the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella body of nine unions, including the All India Bank Officers' Confederation (AIBOC), All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) and National Organisation of Bank Workers (NOBW).
9. Indian and Vietnam sign Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) towards promoting scientific and technical cooperation in marine science and ecology
- The agreement was signed between the Union Minister for Science & Technology, Dr.Jitendra Singh and the visiting Vietnamese Natural resources & Environment Minister, Tran Hong Ha.
- The MoU is the first agreement related to marine science and ecology between the two countries.
10. INDIA, KFW sign Euro 442.26 million loan for Surat Metro Rail Project
- The Government of India and the Germany Development Bank – KFW (Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau) signed a Euro 442.26 million loan for the Surat Metro Rail project in Gujarat.
- The total cost of the project is Euro 1.50 billion, out of which KfW is financing Euro 442.26 million.
- The project is co-financed by the French Development Agency, AFD (Agence Française de Développement) which will provide a Euro 250 million loan.
- The total length of the Surat Metro is 40.35 Km.
11. IFSCA sets up a committee for creating a Framework for transfer of stressed loans from domestic lenders to permitted financial institutions in IFSC
- The International Financial Services Service Authority (IFSCA) has set up a committee to create a framework for transfer of stressed loans from domestic lenders to permitted financial institutions in the International Financial Service Center (IFSC).
- Chairman of the committee : Shri G. Padmanabhan, Former Executive Director, Reserve Bank of India
- Stressed loan means a loan which is not being repaid by the borrower on time and has defaulted on its loan repayment.
12. Hindalco to buy Hydro’s aluminium extrusion plant in Andhra Pradesh
- Hindalco Industries Ltd. of the Aditya Birla Group will buy Hydro’s aluminium extrusions enterprise in India for ₹247 crore.
- Hydro is a Norwegian company which has a 15000 tonnes per annum aluminium extrusion plant at Kuppam, Andhra Pradesh.
13. ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel to set up a steel plant in Odisha
- The Government of Odisha has approved the Investment proposal of ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel to set up an integrated steel plant in Kendrapara district of Odisha with an investment of Rs.1.02 lakh crore.
- ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel, is a joint venture between the world’s 2nd largest steel manufacturing company, ArcelorMittal and Nippon Steel.
- The integrated plant will have steel-making capacity of 24 million tonnes per annum and will generate 16,000 direct employment.
- The approved project is the largest project in the manufacturing sector in the country.
- This facility will also produce 18.75 million tonnes of cement annually, making it the largest cement manufacturing plants in the country
- ArcelorMittal is based in Luxembourg, Europe.
- Nippon Steel is based in Tokyo, Japan.
14. HPCL Launches High Octane Power100 Fuel
- Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited has launched the Power100 ultra-premium fuel for supercars and bikes.
- Power100 is one of the highest octane rating petrol in India.
- It has superior anti-knocking properties to improve engine power resulting in faster acceleration, better fuel economy, and smooth ride.
- XP100 by Indian Oil is the first and the only other 100 Octane fuel in India.
1. DRDO successfully test Stand Off Anti-Tank missile
- Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Indian Air Force (IAF) flight-tested the indigenously designed and developed Helicopter launched Stand-off Anti-tank (SANT) Missile from Pokhran ranges in Rajasthan.
- The SANT missile has been designed and developed by Research Centre Imarat (RCI), Hyderabad in coordination with other DRDO labs and participation from industries.
The target range of the SANT missile is upto 10 KM.
2. Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh hands over DRDO developed products to Armed Forces
- Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh handed over five Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) developed products to the Armed forces and other security agencies at an event held at DRDO Bhawan, New Delhi on December 14, 2021, as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav celebrations and iconic week of Ministry of Defence.
- He also handed over six Transfer of Technology (ToT) agreements to seven public and private sector companies. Earlier DRDO organised a Seminar on “Preparing For The Future''.
3. Successful Launch of supersonic missile Assisted-Torpedo (SMART)
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully launched Supersonic Missile Assisted-Torpedo System (SMART) from Abdul Kalam Island (formerly known as Wheeler Island), Orissa on 13th December 2021.
- It is a missile assisted release of the lightweight Anti-Submarine Torpedo System for anti-submarine warfare (ASW) operations far beyond torpedo range.
- It is a canister based missile system, consisting of advanced technologies viz. two stage solid propulsion, electro-mechanical actuators and precision inertial navigation. The missile is launched from a ground mobile launcher and it can cover a range of distances.
- The system is a next-generation missile-based standoff torpedo delivery system.
- The missile is set to enhance anti-submarine warfare capability of the Indian navy.
4. Defence export from India
- The government of India has informed the Parliament that in 2020-21 total defence export was Rs 8,434.84 crore.
- Raksha Mantri: Mr. Rajnath Singh
- Minister of State for Defence: Mr Ajay Bhatt
Tags: Sports News
1. Max Verstappen is the Formula One World Champion
- Max Verstappen of Red Bull team was crowned the Formula one champion after winning the year end Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to beat the race leader Lewis Hamilton.
- He became the first Dutch(Netherland) driver to win the Formula one or F1 motor car racing championship.
2. 20th Asian Rowing Championship
It was organised at the Royal Thai Navy Rowing Center in Rayong,Thailand from 8-12 December 2021.
India won six medals in all - two gold and four silver.
Gold Medal winners of India
● Arvind Singh - men’s lightweight single sculls.
● Arjun Lal Jat, and Ravi, - men‘s double sculls event.
Silver medal winners
● Parminder Singh - men’s single sculls.
● Jasveer Singh, Punit Kumar, Gurmeet Singh and Charanjeet Singh - men’s coxless fours.
● Bittu Singh, Jakar Khan, Manjeet Kumar and Sukhmeet Singh - quadruple sculls.
● Ashish Phugat and Sukhjinder Singh - men’s lightweight double sculls.
3. 88th National Snooker and Billiards Championship
- The final was held on 14 December 2021, at Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh .
- It was organized by the Billiards and Snooker Federation of India (BSFI), the governing body for cue sports in India.
Men : Ishpreet Singh Chadha defeated Malkeet Singh
Women : Amee Kamani defeated Anupama Ramchandran
4. SFJI Awards
- The Sports Journalists’ Federation of India (SJFI) has announced its year end 2021 awards.
- SFFI Medal: legendary cricketer Sunil Gavaskar.
- SJFI Sportsman of the Year award: Tokyo Olympics gold medalist, Javelin Thrower Neeraj Chopra.
- SJFI Sportswoman of the Year: Tokyo Olympics Silver Medal winner, weightlifter Mirabai Chanu.
- SJFI Team of the Year: The Indian men's team which won the hockey bronze in the Tokyo Olympics.
- SJFI Men Parathletes of the Year: Sumit Antil and Pramod Bhagat.
- Sumit Antil in Javelin throw and Pramod Bhagat in Badminton.
- SJFI Women SJFI Para Athlete of the Year: Tokyo Olympics Gold medal winner in shooting.
5. VVS Lakshman takes charge as NCA Head
Former India batter VVS Lakshman took charge as the new Head of National Cricket Academy (NCA) on 14th December 2021.
- Laxman has occupied the position that was vacated by former India captain Rahul Dravid, who began his tenure as head coach of the national men’s team with the commencement of the home series against New Zealand.
6. India to host u-18 and u-19 SAFF Championship 2022
All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced that India will host the Under-18 Women’s Championship 2022 in March and Under-19 Women’s Championship 2022 in July-August.
- The SAFF U-18 Women's Championship will begin on March 3 while the final is slated to take place on March 14, 2022.
- Meanwhile, SAFF U-19 Women’s Championship will commence on July 25, with the final set to take place on August 3, 2022.
7. Indian team wins Bridge Championship
- The Indian team of Sumit Mukherjee, Jaggy Shivdasani, Keyzad Ankelsaria, Sundeep Thakral, Rajeswar Tewari and Debabrata Majumder defeated the United Arab Emirate (UAE) side to win the Asia and Middle East Bridge Championship title.
- It was held at NOIDA, Uttar Pradesh.
- Both the countries have qualified for the upcoming World Bridge Championship to be held in Italy from March 27 to April 10, 2022.
8. Racism in South Africa cricket
- Social Justice and Nation-Building (SJN) Commission has held Cricket South Africa (CSA) administration, former captain and current director Smith, current head coach Mark Boucher and former batter AB de Villiers of racism and being unfairly discriminating against black cricket players.
- The South Africa and Nation Building commission was set up by the Cricket South Africa to investigate the issue of racism in South African cricket.
- The head of the Commision was Mr. Dumisa Ntsebeza.
Tags: Person in news
1. Gothic novelist Anne Rice passes away
- Anne Rice, the Gothic Novelist who is best known for her best-selling book “Interview with the vampire” passed away.
- She was an American author of gothic fiction, and Christian literature.
2. Elon Musk named Time Person of the year 2021
- New-York based Time magazine has named Tesla founder and space entrepreneur Elon Musk as the Time person of the year 2021.
- Mahatma Gandhi is the only Indian till date to have won the Time Person of the Year in 1930 (then called Time Man of the Year) for his Salt Satyagraha (Dandi march).
- US President Franklin D. Roosevelt is the only person to have won Time Person of the Year 3 times in 1932, 1934 and 1941.
- Indian PM Narendra Modi has won this “People’s Choice Person of the Year” twice in 2014 and 2016
- Elon Reeve Musk is an entrepreneur and business magnate. He is the founder, CEO, and Chief Engineer at SpaceX; Tesla, Inc.; The Boring Company; and co-founder of Neuralink and OpenAI.
3. Gita Gopinath calls on PM Modi
Gita Gopinath, an Indian-American economist, was recently promoted by the IMF and will replace Geoffrey Okamoto as the organisation's First Deputy Managing Director in 2022.
- Gita Gopinath, who is the chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) visited India and met the Prime Minister on 15 December 2021.
- She will take over the post of the First Deputy Managing Director of the IMF from 1 January 2022.
4. French Defence Minister’s visit to India
- French Defence Minister, also called as Minister for Armed Forces Mrs. Florence Parly visited India on 17th December 2021.
- She held the “Annual Defence Dialogue” with her Indian counterpart Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh.
1. Columbia Journalism School’s alumni award
The Columbia Journalism School Alumni Awards are presented every year to distinguished graduates who exemplify the best of the Journalism School's high standards of journalism.
- Recipients of the award:
- Malini Parthasarathy, the chairperson of The Hindu Group Publishing.
- Eric Marcus, the founder and host of ‘Making Gay History’ podcast.
- Stuart Schear, the vice-president for communications and marketing at American Jewish World Service.
- Thomas Maier, an investigative journalist with Newsday and author.
2. Bhutan Confers its highest civilian award on PM Modi
- King of Bhutan, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck has conferred its highest civilian award “Order of the Druk Gyalpo” on Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 17th December 2021.
- This was announced on the occasion of Bhutan’s 114th National Day.
- In 2020, PM Modi was awarded with the Legion of Merit Award by the President of the United States along with the Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison and the former Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe.
Tags: Books and Authors
1. Furrows in a Field: The Unexplored Life of H.D. Deve Gowda
Author : Sugata Srinivasaraju
2. The 1619 Project: Born on the Water
Author: Nikole Hannah Jones
3. Raj Kapoor: The Master at Work’
Author : Rahul Rawail and Ms Pranika Sharma.
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