21st and 22nd August, 2021 – Daily News

Topics covered – India’s first e-vehicle friendly highway, India’s highest herbal park, ZyCoV-D vaccine , India’s largest floating solar PV project , Simhadri thermal station , Covid relief package for drivers, helpers, and priests., AK-103 series of assault rifles , Children’s Climate Risk Index 2021, ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund, Plugin alliance, Small Business Loans Initiative, Advisory Board for Banking and Financial Frauds (, Sadbhavana Diwas , World Mosquito Day , International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism , RTU Open blitz chess title

Bulletins

  1. Bharat Heavy Electronics Ltd has set up Delhi-Chandigarh Highway as India’s first e-vehicle friendly highway, with a network of Solar-based Electric Vehicle Charging stations (SEVCs) under the FAME-1 scheme.
  2. India’s highest herbal park, at a height of 11,000 feet, has been established at Mana village in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand near Indo-China border.
  3. Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) has approved ZyCoV-D vaccine by Zydus Cadila (a Gujarat-based pharmaceutical company) for Emergency Use Authorization.
  4. PM Narendra Modi inaugurated various projects for rejuvenation of the Somnath Temple, Gujarat.
  5. NTPC has commissioned India’s largest floating solar PV project at its Simhadri thermal station in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.
  6. Haryana has announced to change the name of Hisar airport as Maharaja Agrasen International Airport.
  7. Assam govt has announced Covid relief package for drivers, helpers, and priests.
  8. India and Russia have signed an agreement for procurement of AK-103 series of assault rifles for the Indian Army.
  9. Indian Minister of External Affairs, S Jaishankar chaired the UNSC Briefing on Threats to International Peace and Security Caused by Terrorist Acts.
  10. UNICEF, in partnership with Fridays for Futures initiative, has released The Children’s Climate Risk Index 2021.
  11. ASK Investment Managers Ltd. has launched ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund, a close-ended Category-III AIF.
  12. Exim Bank has extended soft loans worth USD 210.73 million on behalf of the Indian government to Guinea to support various development projects in the African country.
  13. Intel India, Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SINE) at IIT-Bombay and over 50 other organisations have joined to form “Plugin alliance”, a collaborative programme to promote new-age technology start-ups.
  14. Facebook India has launched “Small Business Loans Initiative”, to help small and medium businesses (SMBs) that advertise on Facebook to get quick access to credit.
  15. United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) have partnered with Kotak Mahindra Bank for providing a $50 million (about Rs 372 crore) loan guarantee for Indian women and small business borrowers.
  16. India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) has reduced India’s GDP forecast to 9.4% for FY22.
  17. Shanti Lal Jain (former executive director of Bank of Baroda) has been appointed as the MD & CEO of Indian Bank.
  18. T M Bhasin has been re-appointed as the chairman of the Advisory Board for Banking and Financial Frauds (ABBFF) for two years.
  19. Ismail Sabri Yaakob has been appointed as the new PM of Malaysia.
  20. U. Raja Babu has been appointed as the Director of the Research Centre Imarat of DRDO in Hyderabad.
  21. Former PM Rajiv Gandhi’s birth anniversary on August 20 is observed as Sadbhavana Diwas in India every year.
  22. World Mosquito Day is observed on August 20.
  23. International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism is observed on August 21 by UN.
  24. India’s Amit Khatri has won a silver medal in 10km race walk at World U-20 Athletics Meet in Nairobi, Kenya.
  25. R.Praggnanandhaa won RTU Open blitz chess title in Riga, Latvia.
  26. O. M. Nambiar (Indian athletics coach and Dronacharya awardee) has passed away.
  27. Former UP CM Kalyan Singh passed away.
  28. Film producer and former Times of India Executive Pradeep Guha passed away.

Table of Content

National News

  1. Bharat Heavy Electronics Ltd has set up Delhi-Chandigarh Highway as India’s first e-vehicle friendly highway, with a network of Solar-based Electric Vehicle Charging stations (SEVCs) under the FAME-1 scheme.
  2. India’s highest herbal park, at a height of 11,000 feet, has been established at Mana village in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand near Indo-China border.
  3. Additional Facts:

      • The park is divided into four sections.
      • The first section will contain species that are associated with Badrinath (Lord Vishnu), which will include Badri Tulsi, Ber, Badri Tree, and sacred tree of Bhojpatra.
      • The second section has been dedicated to Ashtavarga species, which is a group of eight herbs that are found in the Himalayan region, which are Riddhi, Jeevak, Vriddhi, Kakoli, Rishbhak, Maida, Ksheer Kakoli, and Maha Maida.
      • The third section will have Saussurea species and include Brahmakamal, which is also the state flower of Uttarakhand, Nilkamal, Phemkamal, and Koot.
      • The fourth section will have medicinal plants like assorted alpine species including Meethavish, Ateesh, Choru, and Vankakdi.
  4. Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) has approved ZyCoV-D vaccine by Zydus Cadila (a Gujarat-based pharmaceutical company) for Emergency Use Authorization.
      • ZyCoV-D is India’s first needle-less vaccine for Covid-19.
      • It is also the world’s and India’s first DNA-based vaccine for COVID-19. ZyCoV-D is the first DNA plasmid based COVID-19 vaccine.
  5. PM Narendra Modi inaugurated various projects for rejuvenation of the Somnath Temple, Gujarat.
      • He is the chairman of the Somnath Temple Trust.
      • Among the various projects, Somnath Exhibition Gallery, and laying of the foundation stone of Shree Parvati Temple were the prominent projects.
  6. NTPC has commissioned India’s largest floating solar PV project at its Simhadri thermal station in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.
      • The capacity of the solar project is 25 MW.

State News

  1. Haryana has announced to change the name of Hisar airport as Maharaja Agrasen International Airport.
  2. Assam govt has announced Covid relief package for drivers, helpers, and priests.
      • The state government has also announced COVID relief package where drivers and helpers of privately operated buses will get one-time relief of Rs 10,000.
      • The priests of the temple and head of Namghars (Vaishnavite place of worship) will get Rs 15,000 each.

Defence News

  1. India and Russia have signed an agreement for procurement of AK-103 series of assault rifles for the Indian Army.
      • This is a part of the mega infantry modernisation programme of India.
      • Under the modernization plan, the army is purchasing a large number of light machine guns, battle carbines and assault rifles to replace its ageing and obsolete weapons.
      • In September last year, India and Russia signed an agreement for manufacturing AK-47 203 rifles (advanced version of AK-47 rifles) in India.
      • Indian Army has a requirement for around 770,000 AK-47 203 rifles, of which 100,000 would be imported and the rest will be manufactured in India.

International News

  1. Indian Minister of External Affairs, S Jaishankar chaired the UNSC Briefing on Threats to International Peace and Security Caused by Terrorist Acts.
S Jaishankar Brief on International Peace and Security Caused

Reports & Indices

  1. UNICEF, in partnership with Fridays for Futures initiative, has released The Children’s Climate Risk Index 2021.
      • Title – The climate crisis is a child rights crisis
      • Purpose – The report assesses the impact of climate change and natural hazards (induced by climate change) on children, based on their access to essential services.
  2. Global Scenario:

      • Nearly every child around the world is at risk from at least one of the climate and environmental hazards which are Coastal Flooding, Riverine Flooding, Cyclones, Vector Borne Diseases, Lead Pollution, Heatwaves and Water Scarcity.
      • An estimated 850 million children – 1 in 3 worldwide – live in areas where they have to face at least four of these climate and environmental hazards.
      • As many as 330 million children – 1 in 7 worldwide – live in areas affected by at least five hazards.
      • Young people living in the Central African Republic, Chad, Nigeria, Guinea, and Guinea-Bissau are the most at risk of the impacts of climate change.
      • Children living in these countries not only face hazards, but are facing lack of essential services, such as water and sanitation, healthcare and education.

    India’s Situation:

      • Pakistan (14th), Bangladesh (15th), Afghanistan (25th) and India (26th) are among four South Asian countries where children are at extremely high risk of the impacts of the climate crisis.
      • Approx. 600 million Indians will face ‘acute water shortages’ in the coming years, concurrent with high flash floods, once the global temperature increase rises above 2 Celsius.
      • 21 of the world’s 30 cities with the most polluted air in 2020 were in India.

    Facts:

      • Total countries – 163
      • Top (most vulnerable country) – Central African Republic
Children’s Climate Risk Index
    • India’s rank – 26th rank
26th rank in Climate Risk Index
    • Bottom (least vulnerable country) – Iceland at 163rd rank
Iceland at 163rd in index
    • Parameters –
Parameters of Climate Risk Index

Banking & Economy

  1. ASK Investment Managers Ltd. has launched ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund, a close-ended Category-III AIF.
      • For the first time in the AIF industry in India, the entire process of opening accounts and documentation will be entirely paperless and hassle-free on the digital platform.
      • The ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund will invest in listed Indian equities. It is a flexi-cap portfolio with a mid-cap bias.
      • This fund aims to invest in beneficiaries of varied sectors such as speciality chemicals, footwear, diagnostics, niche digital technologies, among others to push Atmanirbhar Bharat and PLI Schemes.
      • The fund is targeting to raise Rs 1,000 crore.
      • The term of the scheme is seven years with two years of lock-in from the final closing and will target to raise investments from high net worth and ultra-high net worth individuals.
      • ASK Group MD & CEO – Sunil Rohokale
  2. Exim Bank has extended soft loans worth USD 210.73 million on behalf of the Indian government to Guinea to support various development projects in the African country.
      • This agreement was signed in December 2019 between Exim Bank and the Government of Guinea. The agreement under the LOC is effective from August 11, 2021.
  3. Intel India, Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SINE) at IIT-Bombay and over 50 other organisations have joined to form “Plugin alliance”, a collaborative programme to promote new-age technology start-ups.
      • The Alliance’s roadmap includes collaborating with other global bodies focused on Industry 4.0 (technological revolution).
      • The Alliance currently has 53 members including 25 start-ups.
  4. Facebook India has launched “Small Business Loans Initiative”, to help small and medium businesses (SMBs) that advertise on Facebook to get quick access to credit.
      • India is the first country where Facebook is rolling out this programme.
      • Indifi is the first lending partner that Facebook has tied up with and more such partners will be onboarded on this initiative to provide credit to companies.
      • Through this programme, small businesses can get loans between Rs 5 lakh and 50 lakh.
      • Small businesses that are wholly or partly women-owned can get a special 0.2% reduction per annum on the applied loan interest rate from Indifi.
  5. United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) have partnered with Kotak Mahindra Bank for providing a $50 million (about Rs 372 crore) loan guarantee for Indian women and small business borrowers.
      • The facility will support increased access to finance for women borrowers, and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) across India.
      • The program will be supported by Chennai-based NBFC Vivriti Capital, which will provide a $1 million first loss guarantee.
      • Vivriti Capital will also provide analytical and sourcing support through its debt platform named Credavenue.

GDP Forecasts

  1. India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) has reduced India’s GDP forecast to 9.4% for FY22.
      • If India is able to vaccinate its entire adult (18+) population by 31 December 2021, then the GDP growth is expected to be 9.6% in FY22, otherwise it may slip to 9.1%.
      • Going by the pace of vaccination, it is now almost certain that India will not be able to vaccinate its entire adult population by 31 December 2021.
      • According to Ind-Ra, FY22 GDP will be lower by 10.9% than the trend value.
      • PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry has projected GDP growth at 10.25% for India for FY22.

Appointments

  1. Shanti Lal Jain (former executive director of Bank of Baroda) has been appointed as the MD & CEO of Indian Bank.
  2. T M Bhasin has been re-appointed as the chairman of the Advisory Board for Banking and Financial Frauds (ABBFF) for two years.
      • The re-appointment was approved by the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC).
      • The ABBFF was constituted to examine bank / financial frauds of over Rs 50 crore in the public sector and recommend action.
      • The ABBFF was constituted in August 2019, for an initial term of two years. It has four members, including the Chairman.
      • The ABBFF also examines the staff accountability for all levels of the officials or whole-time directors (WTD) in PSBs, in the fraud cases of Rs 50 crore and above.
      • The ABBFF is located in New Delhi.
  3. Ismail Sabri Yaakob has been appointed as the new PM of Malaysia.
      • Capital – Kuala Lumpur
      • Currency – Ringgit
  4. U. Raja Babu has been appointed as the Director of the Research Centre Imarat of DRDO in Hyderabad.

Important Days

  1. Former PM Rajiv Gandhi’s birth anniversary on August 20 is observed as Sadbhavana Diwas in India every year.
      • This is the 77th Birth Anniversary of Rajiv Gandhi.
      • This day is also celebrated as Rajiv Gandhi Akshay Urja Diwas.
  2. World Mosquito Day is observed on August 20.
      • Theme – Reaching zero malaria target and other diseases where mosquitos are the carriers or vectors.
  3. International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism is observed on August 21 by UN.

Sports

  1. India’s Amit Khatri has won a silver medal in 10km race walk at World U-20 Athletics Meet in Nairobi, Kenya.
      • Earlier this year, Amit had set a new national U-20 record in 10km race walking when he won the title at the 18th National Federation Cup with a time of 40:40.97.
  2. R.Praggnanandhaa won RTU Open blitz chess title in Riga, Latvia.

Miscellaneous

  1. O. M. Nambiar (Indian athletics coach and Dronacharya awardee) has passed away.
  2. Former UP CM Kalyan Singh passed away.
  3. Film producer and former Times of India Executive Pradeep Guha passed away.

Start Quiz of 21st and 22nd August 2021

Q.1) Where is India’s highest herbal park located?
Q.2) Recently, NTPC has commissioned India's largest floating solar PV project at its Simhadri thermal station. In which state is the thermal station located?
Q.3) Which state has announced Covid relief package for drivers, helpers, and priests?
Q.4) From which country is India procuring AK-103 series of assault rifles?
Q.5) Which country is the least vulnerable country for children vis-à-vis climate change as per the Children’s Climate Risk Index 2021?
Q.6) Recently, ASK Investment Managers Ltd. has launched ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund, a close-ended Category-III AIF. The ASK Emerging Opportunities Fund will invest in listed Indian equities. It is a flexi-cap portfolio with a mid-cap bias and for the first time in the AIF industry in India, the entire process of opening accounts and documentation will be entirely paperless and hassle-free on the digital platform. This fund aims to invest in beneficiaries of varied sectors such as speciality chemicals, footwear, diagnostics, niche digital technologies, among others to push Atmanirbhar Bharat and PLI Schemes. How much fund does the AIF aim to raise?
Q.7) Recently, Intel India, Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and over 50 other organisations have joined to form “Plugin alliance”, a collaborative programme to promote new-age technology start-ups. Which IIT hosts the Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship?
Q.8) Which company has launched "Small Business Loans Initiative" to help small and medium businesses get quick access to credit?
Q.9) Who has been appointed as the MD & CEO of Indian Bank?
Q.10) Who is the chairman of the Advisory Board for Banking and Financial Frauds?
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About Anuj Jindal

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Anuj Jindal, the founder, is an ex-manager from SBI, with an M.Com from Delhi School of Economics. He also has a JRF in Commerce & Management and NET in HRM, along with more than 4 years of experience in the field of Education.

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