Daily Current Affairs 03rd & 04th January 2021| Current Affairs News

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CURRENT AFFAIRS: DAYS

World Braille Day Observed on January 04

  • World Braille Day is observed every year on 4 January to celebrate the importance of braille, a form of communication and written language for people who are blind and visually challenged.
  • The day commemorates the birth anniversary of Louis Braille, the man who invented braille in the year 1809.
  • Aim of the day : The day aims to raise awareness about braille language and other forms of communication, As many establishments such as banks, restaurants, hospitals still don’t offer braille versions of their printed materials, the day serves as a reminder of the importance of accessibility and independence for people who are visually impaired.

Significance of World Braille Day 

  • World Braille day spreads awareness about braille and highlights the fact that the system of communication is still missing from many establishments around the world.
  • The date for World Braille Day was chosen by the United Nations General Assembly via a proclamation in November 2018. The first world Braille Day was celebrated on 4 January 2019.

What is Braille?

  • Braille is a tangible representation of alphabetic and numerical symbols in which letters and numbers are represented using six dots. It is even used in depicting musical, mathematical and scientific symbols. Braille is named after Louis Braille, who invented it for blind and partially sighted people in 19th century, France.
  • Braille is considered important in terms of education, freedom of expression and opinion, as well as social inclusion, as reflected in article 2 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: NATIONAL NEWS

Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG) launched

  • The Central government has formed a genomic surveillance consortium for laboratory and epidemiological surveillance of circulating strains of the SARS-CoV-2 in India.
  • The Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomic Consortia (INSACOG) has been launched. Coordinated by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) along with MoH&FW, ICMR, and CSIR , the strategy and roadmap of the National SARS CoV2 Genome Sequencing Consortium (INSACOG) has been prepared.
  • The genomic surveillance consortium, INSACOG, has been formed under the leadership of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), New Delhi.
  • Aim : To monitor the genomic variations in the SARS-CoV-2 on a regular basis through a multi-laboratory network. This vital research consortium will also assist in developing potential vaccines in the future.
About INSACOG : 
  • The Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG) will monitor the genomic variations on a regular basis through the multi-laboratory network.
  • Knowledge generated through this vital research consortium will also assist in developing diagnostics and potential therapeutics and vaccines in the future.
  • INSACOG is a consortium of 10 labs namely
  1. DBT-NIBMG Kalyani,
  2. DBT-ILS Bhubaneswar,
  3. ICMR-NIV Pune,
  4. DBT-NCCS Pune,
  5. CSIR-CCMB Hyderabad,
  6. DBT-CDFD Hyderabad,
  7. DBT-InSTEM/ NCBS Bengaluru,
  8. NIMHANS Bengaluru,
  9. CSIR-IGIB Delhi,
  10. NCDC Delhi.
About Department of Biotechnology :
  • Founded : 1986
  • Headquarters : New Delhi
  • Secretary : Dr. Renu Swarup
  • Comes Under Ministry of Science and Technology

Govt extends benefit of RoDTEP scheme to all export goods to boost export

  • Government has decided to extend the benefit of the scheme for Remission of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products (RoDTEP) to all export goods to boost exports.
  • The scheme will refund to exporters the embedded Central, State and local taxes that were so far not being given rebate or refunded.
  • The refund will be credited in the exporter’s ledger account with Customs and used to pay Basic Customs duty on imported goods.
  • The RoDTEP rates will be notified shortly by the Department of Commerce, based on the recommendation of a Committee chaired by former Commerce and Home Secretary Dr. G.K. Pillai

Drug regulator gives final approval for Covid-19 vaccines of SII, Bharat Biotech

  • The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has formally announced the final approval for Oxford-AstraZeneca and Bharat Biotech vaccines against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) for emergency use.
  • CDSCO (Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation) accepts the subject expert committee reform rations on Serum and Bharat Biotech Covid vaccines.
About Covishield :
  • The subject expert committee (SEC) under CDSCO had recommended Oxford-AstraZeneca’s vaccine, which is being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII) as Covishield, for emergency use and Covaxin for restricted use.
About Covaxin :
  • Covaxin is the indigenous vaccine being developed by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
About Serum Institute :
  • CEO : Adar Poonawalla
  • Founder : Cyrus S. Poonawalla
  • Founded : 1966
  • Headquarters : Pune

Bureau of Police Research & Development (BPR&D) releases Data on Police Organizations

  • The Bureau of Police Research & Development (BPR&D) released Data on Police Organizations.
  • The BPR&D has been publishing the Data on Police Organizations (DoPO), annually, since the year
  • DoPO as on 01.01.2019 was released by the Union Home Minister Shri Amit Shah, on 29th January, 2020.
  • This is for the first time in the history of BPR&D that DoPO for a particular year has been released during the year itself.
  • The number of people getting police protection across India stood at 19,467 in 2019 and 21,300 in 2018 a reduction of 1,833 (or 8.7 percent).
  • The number of police personnel put on protection duty in 2018 and 2019 for ministers, MPs, MLAs, judges, bureaucrats, etc., outnumbered their sanctioned strength for the job by around 35 percent.
  • West Bengal had the maximum of 3,142 people under police protection in 2019, followed by Punjab (2,594), Bihar (2,347) and Jammu and Kashmir (1,184).
About Bureau of Police Research & Development :
  • Founded :28 August 1970
  • Comes Under Ministry of Home Affairs
  • Headquarters : New Delhi

Amit Shah releases ‘National Police K-9 Journal’

  • Home Minister Amit Shah released the inaugural issue of the National Police K-9 Journal in New Delhi.
  • It is the first such publication in the country on the subject of Police Service K9s, Police Dogs.
  • This is a unique initiative that will further enrich the subjects related to Police Service Dog, K-9, PSK teams in the country.
  • The event was attended by Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, Directors General of Central Armed Police Forces and senior ranking Police Officers of the Forces, while CAPF personnel from all over the country attended through virtual conference.
About Police K9 Cell :
  • A special Police K9 Cell was established in November last year under the Police Modernization Division of the Ministry of Home Affairs with the mandate of Mainstreaming and Augmentation of Police Service K9s in the country.
  • The publication of the Police K9 Journal is another step in creating an ecosystem in the country to train and learn on augmenting this vital resource.
  • The journal comprises different sections in Hindi and English. 
  • It is a biannual journal which will be released in April and October every year.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: STATE NEWS

Karnataka Government Permitted all shops to remain open for 24×7

  • All shops and commercial establishments employing ten or more people in Karnataka are now allowed to operate on a 24×7 basis, the state government.
  • The move is aimed at generating employment and accelerating economic growth.
  • The permission is subject to the establishments which employ ten or more people.
  • The state government also mandated that no employee will be made to work more than eight hours and in case of overtime the working hours should exceed ten hours a day and 48 hours in a week.
About Karnataka :
  • Capital : Bangalore
  • Chief Minister : B. S. Yediyurappa

CURRENT AFFAIRS: SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY 

ISRO to launch first satellite developed entirely by Brazil’s space agency

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) is set to launch Amazonia-1, the first satellite to have been developed completely in Brazil by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), the Latin American nation’s apex space research body.
  • Emirates SkyCargo, the freight division of Emirates airline, has executed a cargo charter to transport Amazonia-1 from Sao Jose dos Campos, Brazil to Chennai. This is the first time that Emirates SkyCargo has transported a space satellite from South America.
  • The satellite is due to be sent to space in February 2021 from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre on the East coast of India.
  • India and Brazil signed a Framework Agreement for cooperation in the field of outer space in January 2004. Apart from this, an agreement on the programme of cooperation between the two space agencies was also signed. Under this, Brazil received data from ISRO’s remote sensing satellite ResourceSAT-1.
  • The two countries, in July 2014, also signed an agreement on cooperation to alter a Brazilian earth station to receive and process data from the Indian Remote Sensing satellites (IRS) series.
About Amazonia-1 :
  • Amazonia-1 is a Sun synchronous (polar) orbiting satellite that can generate images of any part of the world every five days. For this, it has a wide-view optical imager (camera with 3 visible frequency bands – VIS – and 1 near infrared band – Near Infrared or NIR) with a swath of 850 km and 60 meters of resolution.
  • The Amazonia series satellites are composed of two independent modules: a Service Module, which is the Multi-Mission Platform (MMP), and a Payload Module, which houses image cameras and equipment for recording and transmitting image data.
About Indian Space Research Organisation :
  • Founder : Vikram Sarabhai
  • Founded : 15 August 1969
  • Director : Kai;asavadivoo Sivan
About Brazil :
  • Presidente : Jair Bolsonaro
  • Capital : Brasilia
  • Currency : Brazilian real

CURRENT AFFAIRS: BANKING NEWS

RBI introduces the Digital Payments Index

  • The Reserve Bank of India has constructed a composite Digital Payments Index (DPI) to capture the extent of digitisation of payments across the country.
  • The RBI-DPI comprises 5 broad parameters that enable measurement of deepening and penetration of digital payments in the country over different time periods.
  • These parameters are
  1. Payment Enablers (weight 25%),
  2. Payment Infrastructure – Demand-side factors (10%),
  3. Payment Infrastructure – Supply-side factors (15%),
  4. Payment Performance (45%) and
  5. Consumer Centricity (5%).
  • The RBI-DPI has been constructed with March 2018 as the base period, i.e. DPI score for March 2018 is set at 100. The DPI for March 2019 and March 2020 work out to 153.47 and 207.84 respectively, indicating appreciable growth.
  • RBI-DPI shall be published on RBI’s website on a semi-annual basis from March 2021 onwards with a lag of 4 months.
  • The base period for RBI-DPI is March 2018.
  • This means that the DPI score for March 2018 is set at 100.
About RBI :
  • Headquarters : Mumbai
  • Founder : British Raj
  • Governor : Shaktikanta Das
  • Bank Rate : 4.00%
  • Repo Rate :5.15%
  • Reverse Repo Rate :4.90%

CURRENT AFFAIRS: DEFENCE NEWS

BEL signs contract with Indian Navy for Initial Supply of indigenously developed Laser Dazzlers

  • Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) has signed a contract with Indian Navy for initially supplying 20 Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation Dazlers (Laser Dazzlers) in New Delhi.
  • The BEL had earlier this month won the contract beating global Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) in the global category.
  • These would be manufactured by BEL, Pune plant.
  • Laser dazzler technology was developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
  • This unique product is indigenously designed and developed for the first time for the Armed Forces.
About Laser Dazzler
  • The Laser Dazzler is used as a non-lethal method for warning and stopping suspicious vehicles/boats/aircrafts/UAVs/pirates etc. from approaching secured areas during both day and night.
  • It is capable of dazzle and thereby suppress the person’s/optical sensor’s action with disability glare in case of non-compliance to orders. It disorient/ confuse/blind a person temporarily.
  • It also dazzles and distracts aircraft/UAVs. It is a portable, shoulder operated and ruggedized for military use in adverse environmental conditions.
About DRDO :
  • Comes Under Ministry of Defence
  • Founded : 1958
  • Headquarters : New Delhi
About Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) :
  • Headquarters : Bangalore
  • Founded : 1954

CURRENT AFFAIRS: AGREEMENTS 

India to be a co-chair of regional forum to conserve wildlife habitats – Asia Protected Areas Partnership (APAP)

  • India has been chosen as the IUCN-supported Asia Protected Areas Partnership (APAP) for 3 years and it could, on this capability, help different Asian nations in managing their protected areas.
About APAP :
  • The APAP is a regional platform to assist governments and different stakeholders to collaborate for more practical administration of protected areas (PA) within the region.
  • The APAP presently consists of 21 members from 17 nations together with China, Japan, South Korea, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
  • The APAP, formally launched at the IUCN World Parks Congress in Australia in 2014, is chaired by IUCN Asia and co-chaired by an APAP nation member.
  • India will substitute South Korea which held this place for 3 years until November, 2020.
  • Currently there are 21 members from 17 international locations.
About IUCN :
  • Headquarters : Gland, Switzerland
  • CEO : Grethel Aguilar
  • Founder : Julian Huxley
  • Founded : 5 Oct 1948

CURRENT AFFAIRS: SUMMITS & CONFERENCES 

PM inaugurates National Metrology Conclave 2021

  • Prime Minister inaugurates National Metrology Conclave 2021 through video conferencing.
  • National Metrology Conclave 2021 was organised by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-National Physical Laboratory, New Delhi.
  • Science and Technology Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan and Director General, CSIR, Shekhar Mande and Principal Scientific Adviser to the Central Government, Professor K VijayRaghavan were also present on the occasion.
  • Theme of 2021 : Meteorology for the Inclusive Growth of the Nation.
  • He also The National Atomic Time Scale generates Indian Standard Time with an accuracy of 2.8 nanosecond. Bhartiya Nirdeshak Dravya aims at supporting testing and calibration of laboratories for quality assurance, at par with international standards.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: SPORTS NEWS

Leon Mendonca becomes India’s 67th chess Grandmaster

  • Goa’s 14-year-old Leon Mendonca has become India’s 67th chess GrandMaster (GM) by winning the third and final norm at a tournament in Italy.
  • Mendonca, who achieved the feat at 14 years, 9 months and 17 days, is the second GM from the Coastal State.
  • The All India Chess Federation (AICF) acknowledged the development. Leon is the second Indian to become GM this year after G. Akash.
  • He achieved his first GM norm at the Rigo Chess GM Round Robin in October while the second came at the first Saturday in Budapest in November. His final GM norm came at the Vergani Cup in Italy that ended on December 30.
  • GM is a title awarded by FIDE ( International Chess Federation ). It is the highest title a chess player can obtain apart from World Champion.
About International Chess Federation :
  • President : Arkady Dvokovich
  • Headquarters : Lausanne, Switzerland
  • Founded : 20 July, 1924

CURRENT AFFAIRS: OBITUARIES 

Former Union minister and Congress leader Buta Singh passes away

  • Former Union minister, ex-MP from Rajasthan and Congress leader Buta Singh passed away. He was 86.
About Buta Singh :
  • Born in 1934 in Punjab’s Jalandhar, Buta Singh joined the Congress under Jawaharlal Nehru’s leadership and was close to Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi, both.
  • Mr Singh was first elected to the Parliament in 1962.
  • He also served as the Home Minister in the Rajiv Gandhi government from 1986 to 1989, National President of Scheduled Caste Commission, governor for West Bengal and Bihar, and Union minister for Agriculture, Railways, Commerce and Sports, among other departments.
  • He subsequently held many positions including those of the Union home minister and Union agriculture minister.
  • He was the chairperson of the National Commission For Scheduled Caste from 2007 to 2010.
  • He also authored a collection of articles on Punjabi literature and Sikh history and wrote a book Punjabi Speaking State: A Critical Analysis.

Odia music maestro Shantanu Mohapatra dies at 84 in Bhubaneshwar

  • Legendary Odia music director Shantanu Mohapatra died in Bhubaneswar on December 30 .He was 84 years old.
  • Born at Baripada in Mayurbhanj district in 1936.
  • Shantanu Mohapatra was the first Odia music director to work with acclaimed singers and music composers of the Hindi film industry.
  • These included Lata Mangeshkar (Surjyamukhi), Mohd Rafi (Arundhati), Manna Dey (Surjyamukhi), Usha Mangeskar (Arundhati) and other artists like Suresh Wadekar, Anuradha Paudwal, Usha Uthup, Kavita Krishnamurthy, etc.
  • He composed the first modern lullaby in AIR, first qawali, first bhangra tune, and first fusion and jumping note.
  • Mohapatra was a geophysicist and had worked with Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC).
  • In honour of his lifetime contribution to Odia culture, the Utkal University of Culture had conferred honorary D.Litt on him in 2011.

Daily CA on Jan 02nd    

  • Global Family Day is an annual celebration observed on January 1stof every year.with the theme “One Day of Peace” which was then observed on the first day of every year to welcome the New Year.
  • The DRDO observed the 63rd Foundation Day of its establishment on January 01, 2021.
  • Minister of State for External Affairs Muraleedharan launched the Global Pravasi Rishta portal and mobile App, to connect with Indian Diaspora across the world.
  • On 1st January Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of Light House projects (LHPs) under Global Housing Technology Challenge (GHTC)- at six sites across six States, through video conference.
  • Chief of Army Staff General MM Naravane has received a Guard of Honour at Republic of Korea Army Headquarters at Gyeryong.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Rajkot in Gujarat today through video conferencing.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of the permanent campus of the Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Sambalpur, on January 2 via video-conferencing.
  • New Year announcement, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Jitendra Singh informed of the government decision to extend “Disability Compensation” for all serving employees,
  • Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Dharmendra Pradhan launched the missed call facility for LPG consumers in Bhubaneswar.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Rajkot in Gujarat through video conferencing.
  • Virtual Agri-hackathon Atmanirbhar Krishi inaugurated To make Agriculture profitable and attract youth towards agriculture are challenges of the Agri-hackathon
  • Indian Air Force Chief, Air Marshal R K S Bhadauria launched the IAF e-Governance (e-Office) portal in New Delhi. 
  • India will begin its two-year tenure as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). 
  • On new year eve, Australia has changed one word in its national anthem to reflect “the spirit of unity” and the country’s Indigenous population.
  • India and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have signed a USD 231 million loan to augment electricity generation capacity in the State of Assam through construction of a 120 MegaWatts hydroelectric power plant that will enhance availability of electricity for households.
  • Jharkhand is set to replace the Prime Minister’s insurance scheme for farmers with its own crop relief scheme – Kisan Fasal  Rahat Yojana.
  • Admiral Karambir Singh, the Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS) visited INS Dwarka, Indian Navy’s forward operating base at Okha, Gujarat, on new year’s eve.
  • State-owned Punjab National Bank NSE 0.92 % (PNB) announced the extension of its festival bonanza offer till March.
  • India Post expects to make the Post Office Savings Bank interoperable with other bank accounts by April and will focus on enhancing digitisation of all services in 2021, a senior official of the department said.
  • National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) announced that RuPay has partnered with RBL Bank to launch an innovative payment solution for Indian merchants – RuPay PoS in association with
  • International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA) has become an associate member of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO).
  • Senior IAS officer P Ravi Kumar has been appointed as Karnataka’s 38th chief secretary. He will replace TM Vijay Bhaskar who will superannuate on December 31 2020.
  • Suneet Sharma has been appointed as the new Chairman & Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Railway Board (Ministry of Railways) and ex-officio Principal Secretary to Government of India.
  • Soma Mondal has taken over as Chairman of Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) with effect from January 01, 2021.
  • Umesh Sinha has been appointed as the deputy election commissioner in the Election Commission of India, according to a Personnel Ministry order.
  • The Punjab Government has promoted three Additional Director Generals of Police (ADGPs) to the rank of
  • LUKOSIN’ Developer and Senior scientist Hemant Kumar Pandey has been honoured with DRDO’s ‘Scientist of the Year Award’ for his contribution in developing several herbal medicines, including the popular drug Lukoskin meant for treatment of leucoderma.
  • Goods and Services Tax collections for December Rs 1.15 lakh crore, the highest ever since the implementation of the nationwide tax in July 2017.
  • In Jammu and Kashmir, the Union Territory Administration signed a historic Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd. (NAFED), an apex organization of marketing cooperatives for agricultural produce.
  • The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India on 30th December 2020 signed a $10 million project readiness financing (PRF).
  • On December 28, 2020, John Fulton Reid, New Zealand cricketer passed away. He was 64.
  • Ace mountaineer Colonel Narendra ‘Bull’ Kumar, 87, who helped India secure the Siachen Glacier, passed away.

Daily CA on Jan 03rd and 04th    

  • World Braille Day is observed every year on 4 January to celebrate the importance of braille, a form of communication and written language for people who are blind and visually challenged.
  • The Central government has formed a genomic surveillance consortium for laboratory and epidemiological surveillance of circulating strains of the SARS-CoV-2 in India.
  • Government has decided to extend the benefit of the scheme for Remission of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products (RoDTEP) to all export goods to boost exports.
  • The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has formally announced the final approval for Oxford-AstraZeneca and Bharat Biotech vaccines against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) for emergency use.
  • The Bureau of Police Research & Development (BPR&D) released Data on Police Organizations.The BPR&D has been publishing the Data on Police Organizations (DoPO), annually, since the year
  • Home Minister Amit Shah released the inaugural issue of the National Police K-9 Journal in New Delhi. It is the first such publication in the country on the subject of Police Service K9s, Police Dogs.
  • All shops and commercial establishments employing ten or more people in Karnataka are now allowed to operate on a 24×7 basis, the state government.
  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) is set to launch Amazonia-1, the first satellite to have been developed completely in Brazil by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), the Latin American nation’s apex space research body.
  • The Reserve Bank of India has constructed a composite Digital Payments Index (DPI) to capture the extent of digitisation of payments across the country.
  • Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) has signed a contract with Indian Navy for initially supplying 20 Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation Dazlers (Laser Dazzlers) in New Delhi.
  • India has been chosen as the IUCN-supported Asia Protected Areas Partnership (APAP) for 3 years and it could, on this capability, help different Asian nations in managing their protected areas.
  • Prime Minister inaugurates National Metrology Conclave 2021 through video conferencing. National Metrology Conclave 2021 was organised by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-National Physical Laboratory, New Delhi.
  • Goa’s 14-year-old Leon Mendonca has become India’s 67th chess GrandMaster (GM) by winning the third and final norm at a tournament in Italy.
  • Former Union minister, ex-MP from Rajasthan and Congress leader Buta Singh passed away. He was 86.

 

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