Current Affairs 7th January 2021

Table of Contents

1. Arup Kumar Goswami: Chief Justice of AP HC

Arup Kumar Goswami was sworn in as the Chief Justice of Andhra Pradesh High Court on 6 Jan 2021. Governor Biswabhusan Harichandan administered the oath of office to Justice Goswami at a brief function in Vijayawada. Justice Goswami, who was previously the Chief Justice of Sikkim High Court, was transferred as the Chief Justice of AP a few days back in the place of Justice J K Maheshwari.

2. World’s largest floating solar plant in MP

At 600 MW – the world’s largest floating solar energy plant has been proposed to be constructed on the Omkareshwar Dam reservoir on the Narmada river in Khandwa district of MP. The project will begin power generation by 2022-23. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), World Bank and the Power Grid have granted in-principle consent for providing aid for the said project development.

3. Bhitarkanika National Park to shut from 15 Jan

Bhitarkanika National Park in Odisha would remain out of bounds for nine days of Jan 2021. It is being shut from Jan 15-23, 2021 for the annual census of the estuarine crocodiles. As many as 22 teams have been constituted to count the crocodiles. Bhitarkanika is said to house 70% of India’s estuarine crocodile or saltwater crocodiles, conservation of which was started way back in 1975.

4. Shivalik Bank receives banking license

Shivalik Small Finance Bank (SSFB) has received a license from RBI to carry on banking business as a Small Finance Bank (SFB) in India. SMCB is the first Urban Cooperative Bank (UCB) in India to transition to a Small Finance Bank under the voluntary transition scheme. Shivalik is the first and largest multi-state Urban Co-operative Bank in Uttar Pradesh.

5. India’s first Fire Park comes up in Odisha

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik has inaugurated the ‘Fire Park, a first of its kind initiative in the country, to bring awareness on fire safety measures. He also launched a dynamic online portal, ‘AgnishamaSeva’ of Odisha Fire Service on a virtual platform. Located in Bhubaneswar, the Fire Park will be open to the public every Saturday from 3.30 pm to 5.30 pm.

6. Govt offices to be declared ‘green’ in Kerala

A total of 10,000 state government offices and public sector undertakings in Kerala will be declared “green” on January 26, 2021, the Republic Day. Those offices, which avoid using plastic and disposable items in day-to-day activities and encourage the use of articles that can be reused and recycled, would get the green tag.

7. ITBP inks MoU with KVIC

Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) has signed a deal with the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC). It will procure over 1.71 lakh Khadi durries for Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs). These will be procured at a total cost of Rs. 8,73,46,000. The MoU was signed between the ITBP and the KVIC at the Gandhi Smriti, Rajghat, the base office of the KVIC.

8. IRDAI to introduce Bharat Griha Raksha

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) will introduce a standard home insurance policy ‘Bharat Griha Raksha. It will cover the risk of fire and allied perils for certain risks. Besides offering coverage for the home building, the policy will cover ‘General Home Contents’ automatically for 20% of the sum insured for the building subject to a maximum of Rs. 10 lakh.

9. PhonePe joins hands with ICICI Prudential

PhonePe has joined hands with ICICI Prudential Life Insurance to unveil a new term insurance policy. The premium starts from as low as Rs. 149 per annum. The policy insures the users for a sum ranging from ₹1 lakh to ₹20 lakh, depending on the premium amount. Customers can avail the insurance policy instantly on the PhonePe application without any health check-ups.

10. UP govt increases allowance of medical interns

The UP govt has increased the monthly allowance of MBBS and BDS interns in the state from Rs. 7,500 to Rs. 12,000. The increase in the allowance has been made effective by the state government after a period of 10 years. MBBS and BDS students who are pursuing an internship after having graduated from the state government’s medical colleges, institutes and universities will get the benefit.

11. NCS deploys 11 temporary stations

The National Centre for Seismology (NCS) has deployed 11 temporary additional stations covering the known faults in the National Capital Region. They will precisely locate earthquakes and their aftershocks for a better understanding of causes. The move came after the National Capital Region of Delhi experienced four small earthquakes from April to August 2020.

12. Lucknow University to offer part-time jobs

Lucknow University has launched the “Karmayogi Scheme which will offer students part-time jobs while continuing their studies on the campus. A student can earn up to a maximum of Rs. 15,000 in a year through the scheme. A student would be allowed to work for a maximum of 2 hours a day for a maximum of 50 days in an academic session after his class hour. They will be paid Rs. 150 per hour.

13. World Bank commits USD 105 mn to West Bengal

The Govt of India, Govt of West Bengal and the World Bank have signed a $105 mn project. It has been signed to improve the inland water transport infrastructure in Kolkata, West Bengal. The West Bengal Inland Water Transport, Logistics and Spatial Development Project will facilitate passenger and freight movement across the Hooghly river, enhance the quality of life of its residents, etc.

14. MP, Andhra Pradesh complete reforms

MP and Andhra Pradesh have become the first group of states to complete 3 out of the 4 citizen-centric reforms stipulated by the Finance Ministry. They have completed the One Nation, One Ration Card reforms, Ease of Doing Business reforms, and Urban Local Bodies reforms. They will be provided additional financial assistance amounting to Rs. 1,004 crore.

15. India, France held annual Strategic Dialogue

India and France held their annual Strategic Dialogue in New Delhi on 7 January 2021. National Security Advisor Ajit Doval led the Indian delegation while the French delegation was led by Emmanuel Bonne, Diplomatic Advisor to the French President. The last edition of the Strategic Dialogue was held in February 2020 in Paris.

16. Centre decides to form a committee

Centre has decided to form a committee to protect the language, culture, and land of Ladakh and ensuring citizen’s participation in the UT’s development. The Committee will be headed by the Minister of State for Home G.Kishan Reddy. It will also include elected representatives from Ladakh, Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council, central government, and the Ladakh administration.

17. Nat. Board of Wildlife approves an advisory

The Standing Committee of the National Board of Wildlife has approved the advisory for management of Human-Wildlife Conflict in the country. The advisory makes important prescriptions for the States and UTs for dealing with human-wildlife conflict situations. It seeks expedited inter-departmental coordinated and effective actions.

18. Bullet proof jackets handed over to Army

Minister of State for Defence Shripad Yesso Naik handed over one lakh bulletproof jackets to the Indian Army Chief General M M Naravane in New Delhi, on 6 January 2021. They have been manufactured by SMPP Private Limited and have been delivered four months ahead of the delivery schedule. These have been made in India itself.

19. DoT issues notice for auction of spectrum

The Department of Telecommunications has issued a notice inviting applications for auction of Spectrum in 700 megahertz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz and 2500 MHz bands. The last date for submission of applications for participation in the auction is 5 Feb 2021. The auction will commence online from 1 March 2021. The validity of auctioned Spectrum shall be 20 years.

20. Power Ministry notifies price of oil

The Ministry of Power in consultation with the Bureau of Energy Efficiency, BEE has notified the price of per metric tonne of oil equivalent as Rs. 18,402 for 2018-19. The price of one metric tonne of oil equivalent discovered for 2018-2019 is based on the changes in corresponding energy mix due to addition of new sectors like Petroleum Refinery, under the Perform, Achieve and Trade Scheme.

21. Another countrywide COVID-19 vaccine dry run

Another mock drill on COVID-19 vaccine administration will be conducted in all states and Union Territories on 8 Jan 2021. It will ensure efficient planning and management for vaccine delivery. Each district will identify three types of session sites, similar to the previous dry run including a public health facility, private health facility, and rural or urban outreach sites,

22. India report on LASI Wave-1 released

Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan released India’s report on Longitudinal Ageing Study of India (LASI) Wave-1 on 6 Jan 2021. LASI is a full-scale national survey of scientific investigation of the health, economic, and social determinants and consequences of population ageing in India. It will provide a base for national and state-level programmes and policies for the elderly population.

23. MoC approved between India and Japan

The Union Cabinet has approved the signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation between Indian and Japan. It is for a basic framework for the partnership for proper operation of the system pertaining to “Specified Skilled Worker!”. The Memorandum of Cooperation would enhance people-to-people contacts, foster mobility of workers and skilled professionals from India to Japan.

24. Ice Hockey tournament begins in Kargil

In Kargil, Ladakh, Khelo India Ice Hockey Tournament is being organized at Chiktan from 6 January 2021. For the first time, the women team of Chiktan also participated in the Khelo India Games in the Kargil district. There are 13 teams from different villages of Chiktan participating in the tournament, which include 11 men’s teams and 2 women’s teams.

25. Hima Kohli sworn in as CJ of Telangana HC

Justice Hima Kohli was sworn in as the Chief Justice (CJ) of Telangana High Court on 7 Jan 2021. Governor Dr. Tamilisai Soundararajan administered the oath of office. Justice Hima Kohli has served as a judge of Delhi High Court and has become the first woman CJ of Telangana High Court. The present CJ of Telangana High Court RS Chauhan has been appointed as CJ of Jharkhand High Court.

26. Madhya Pradesh govt to ban supply of poultry

Madhya Pradesh government has decided to ban the supply of poultry from Kerala and certain other southern states. Control rooms have been set up in every district to monitor the spread of the virus. The presence of the H5N8 virus has been detected only in crows so far. Poultry remains unaffected in the state till now.

27. Marathi Journalism Day: 6 January

Marathi Journalism Day was celebrated across Maharashtra on 6 Jan 2021. On 6th January 1832, Balshastri Jambhekar, known as the father of Marathi journalism started the first newspaper ‘Darpan!’. Since then this day is being celebrated as the Marathi Journalism day in the state. The journalist fraternity across Maharashtra
was felicitated on the occasion.

28. 45 teams formed to monitor bird flu

In the Namakkal district of Tamil Nadu, 45 teams have been formed to monitor the bird flu situation. The team members include poultry farm owners, officials of the Veterinary Dept, forestry, health, and local officials. The District administrations of Kanyakumari and western districts are maintaining vigil even as vehicles from Kerala have been sprayed with chlorine dioxide.

29. Govt signs 2 loan agreements with NDB

The government has signed two loan agreements of USD 646 million with the New Development Bank. They have been signed for upgrading the state highway network and district road network in Andhra Pradesh. The first project is the Andhra Pradesh Roads and Bridges Reconstruction Project. The second project is the Andhra Pradesh Mandal Connectivity and Rural Connectivity Improvement Project.

30. Kolkata International Film Festival to begin

The 26th Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) will be held from 8-15 January 2021. The week-long event will be held virtually on a smaller scale. 81 feature films along with 50 short and documentary films from 45 countries will be screened at eight venues for the year 2021. The 26th edition of KIFF was to take place from 5th to 12th November 2020 initially,

31. SAP to invest Rs. 500 crore in India

German technology firm SAP SE would invest 500 crores in India to localize and offer customers the flexibility of a multi-cloud environment. SAP will make available its multiple cloud solutions in India’s data centers. In May 2020, SAP had launched its Commerce Cloud and S/4 HANA Cloud on its India data center to help domestic enterprises meet end-to-end customer demands.

32. FarEye announces Esop liquidity program

FarEye, a logistics software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform has announced an employee stock ownership program (Esop) liquidation program for its staff. This is the first time that it has offered liquidation of Esops. Under the scheme, eligible employees can liquidate up to 35% of their vested Esop shares. It has announced the distribution of $739,000 to liquidate eligible ESOP options.

33. Emkay gives Buy rating to HDFC Bank

Emkay Research has given a Buy rating to HDFC Bank share with a target price of Rs. 1,500 in 12 months. HDFC Bank has witnessed a loan growth of 16% for the quarter ended in December 2020. HDFC Bank has reported in-line healthy 16% yoy/4% qoq credit growth at Rs. 10.8 lakh crore in Q3FY21. It has retained a relatively high mortgage portfolio from HDFCL to the tune of Rs. 70.8 bn.

34. JK Tyre enters partnership with Hyundai Motor

JK Tyre & Industries Ltd. has entered a partnership with Hyundai Motor India for its highest selling SUV, Creta. JK Tyre will be offering its UX Royale 215/60 R17 radial tyre with the top-end variants of the Hyundai Creta. The tyre comes with a 5-rib asymmetric design, variable draft groove technology, stable shoulder tread blocks, waffle groove and aero wing design.

35. Chingari partners with Dekko

Indian application Chingari has entered a collaboration with the short video news app Dekko to introduce infotainment to its users. With this partnership, the short video-sharing platform aims at introducing more accessible, sharable, and credible news video content. This tie-up is designed to specifically serve Hindi speaking consumers across the globe.

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