Sunday, May 19, 2024
Current Affairs English

Daily Current Affairs 1st May, 2024

Daily Current Affairs 1 May 2024 for Banking/Insurance/SSC and other related exams.

NATIONAL NEWS

PFRDA implements transparency measures in rule-making process

PFRDA implements transparency measures in rule-making process

  • Pension regulator PFRDA has now implemented a mechanism for making and reviewing regulations, bringing more transparency and certainty in the rule-making process.
  • The framework includes the implementation of an “economic analysis” to assess the costs and benefits of proposed regulations, the establishment of a Regulations Advisory Committee to review and make regulations, and the requirement for public consultations before finalising regulations.
  • The PFRDA should allow the public a minimum of thirty days to submit comments before making regulations. It should also publish a statement of the problem addressed by the proposed regulations on its website, in addition to a draft of the proposed regulations.


INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Sri Lankan Cabinet Approves Renovation Of Kankesanthurai Port With Indian Financial Grant

Sri Lankan Cabinet Approves Renovation Of Kankesanthurai Port With Indian Financial Grant

  • Sri Lanka’s Cabinet has approved the plan to renovate the Kankesanthurai port in the Northern part of the island. The project will be executed under an Indian financial grant. 
  • The project had faced delays as estimated costs surpassed available funds. Recognizing the project’s significance, India has pledged to cover the entire estimated cost of the project(USD 61.5 million). 
  • Situated in the northern region of Sri Lanka, the Kankesanthurai Port or the KKS Port, with an area of approximately 16 acres, is located at a distance of 104 km (56 nautical miles) from Karaikal Port in Puducherry.

Kathmandu Tops List For ‘Unhealthy Air’ Worldwide: Urgent Mask-Wearing Advisory Issued

Kathmandu Tops List For ‘Unhealthy Air’ Worldwide: Urgent Mask-Wearing Advisory Issued

  • According to IQAir, an organization that measures the real-time pollution of 101 cities in the world, Kathmandu was found to be the most polluted city in the world. In terms of pollution, Kathmandu, New Delhi, Chiang Mai in Thailand, Hanoi in Vietnam, Bangkok in Thailand and Dhaka in Bangladesh are ranked first, second, third, fourth and fifth respectively. 
  • According to the ‘World Air Quality Index-Ranking’, which measures the level of air pollution around the world, Kathmandu’s air is at the top of the world’s unhealthy air list. Air pollution affects the heart and blood vessels, lungs, brain, eyes, nose, ears, and throat and also increases the risk of asthma, cancer and other diseases. 
  • As there is a high possibility of heat waves in the Terai region during summer, the Ministry has requested that people should not go outside unnecessarily during the day and drink more water and take liquid food.


BANKING & FINANCE

RBI guidelines on AIFs: Understanding the impact on MSMEs, startups & other sectors

RBI retains repo rate at 6.5 percent for sixth consecutive time

  • In scaling up any business, the initial hurdle often revolves around the requirement for collateral, particularly daunting in the realm of brick-and-mortar businesses. However, the landscape shifted significantly with the rise of technology-driven ventures, where innovative concepts and ideas could swiftly translate into tangible valuations.
  • AIFs have emerged as a potent force in recent years, offering investors avenues beyond traditional stock markets. Catering to high-net-worth individuals and institutional investors, AIFs provide opportunities for portfolio diversification and potentially. 
  • The RBI’s investigations, along with those of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), revealed instances where AIFs were allegedly used to evergreen problematic loans. This misuse undermined financial stability and raised concerns about circumventing foreign investment caps and insolvency regulations.
  • Previously, REs had to make a 100% provision against their entire investment in an AIF. The new guidelines clarify that the provisioning will only be based on the portion of the AIF’s investment that goes into the RE’s debtor company. This offers REs more flexibility to manage their portfolios and potentially avoid significant provisioning requirements.
  • Earlier guidelines prohibited RE investments in AIFs with any downstream investments (direct or indirect) in the RE’s debtor companies. The revised definition clarifies “downstream investment” to exclude equity shares held by the AIF in the RE’s debtor company. However, all other investments, including hybrid instruments, are now considered downstream investments.
  • The new guidelines allow for a split deduction between Tier 1 and Tier 2 capital, catering to investors with varying risk appetites. However, further clarity from SEBI on differential return structures within these models remains necessary.
  • It’s important to note that investments in AIFs through intermediary vehicles like Fund of Funds and mutual funds remain outside the scope of these amendments.

RBI announces launch of ‘inflation expectations’ and ‘consumer confidence’ surveys for monetary policy inputs

30 banks join RBI UDGAM portal for unclaimed deposits

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced the launch of ‘Inflation Expectations Survey of Households’ and ‘Consumer Confidence Survey’ which will provide key inputs for the bi-monthly monetary policy. The next bi-monthly monetary policy is scheduled during June 5-7, 2024.
  • The ‘Inflation Expectations Survey of Households’ aims at capturing subjective assessments on price movements and inflation, based on their individual consumption baskets, across 19 cities, including Guwahati, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow, and Thiruvananthapuram, the RBI said. 
  • The survey on inflation seeks qualitative responses from households on price changes (general prices as well as prices of specific product groups) in the three months ahead as well as in the one-year ahead period.
  • The ‘Consumer Confidence Survey’ seeks qualitative responses from households, regarding their sentiments on general economic situation, employment scenario, price level, households’ income and spending, the central bank said. 

RBI maintains FPI investment limits in G-Secs at 6%, corporate bonds at 15%

FPI investment limits

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said the limits for FPIs’ (foreign portfolio investors) investment in government securities, state development loans and corporate bonds will remain unchanged at 6%, 2% and 15%, respectively, of outstanding stocks of securities for 2024-25.
  • As of now, all investments by eligible investors in the ‘specified securities’ will be reckoned under the fully accessible route (FAR), the RBI said.
  • The allocation of incremental changes in the g-sec limit (in absolute terms) over the two sub-categories ‘General’ and ‘Long-term’ will be retained at 50:50 for 2024-25, the central bank stated.
  • The entire increase in limits, in absolute terms, has been added to the general sub-category of state development loans (SDLs), it said.

ADB operations reach USD23.6 billion in 2023, achieve record climate finance of USD9.8 billion

ADB and Government of India Sign $200 Million Loan for Brahmaputra River Project

  • The Asian Development Bank (ADB) committed USD 23.6 billion from its own resources in 2023, including USD 9.8 billion for climate action, to help Asia and the Pacific progress on sustainable development.) 
  • These figures are among the financial and operational results published in ADB’s Annual Report 2023. The report summarises how ADB supported its developing member countries (DMCs) to address the worsening climate crisis as well as the impacts of conflicts, food insecurity, and increased debt burdens, among other challenges. 
  • The $23.6 billion comprised loans, grants, equity investments, guarantees, and technical assistance provided to governments and the private sector. Supplementing its own resources, ADB mobilized an additional $16.4 billion in cofinancing through its strong partnership. 


BUSINESS & ECONOMY

SBI partners with HCLSoftware for digital transformation

SBI partners with HCLSoftware for digital transformation

  • The country’s largest lender, the State Bank of India, partnered with HCLSoftware, the software business unit of HCLTech, for the bank’s digital transformation.
  • As part of the five-year agreement, HCLSoftware will deploy the HCL Unica platform to enable SBI to digitally transform its customer interaction framework and provide hyper-personalized communication across the bank’s diverse digital marketing channels, while adhering to the Digital Personal Data Protection Act (DPDPA) and other stringent security requirements. 
  • HCL Unica, with its advanced Customer Data Platform, AI capabilities and comprehensive campaign management tools, would leverage real-time data to significantly improve SBI’s ability to engage with its customers. It will help facilitate complex, multi-channel digital marketing campaigns, enhancing customer engagement precision and relevance. 

Ericsson and IIT Kanpur partner to drive innovation in mobile financial services

Ericsson and IIT Kanpur partner to drive innovation in mobile financial services

  • Ericsson and the Foundation for Innovation & Research in Science & Technology (F.I.R.S.T) at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur have announced a two-year strategic partnership to drive innovation in Mobile Financial Services (MFS) and Fintech solutions.
  • This collaboration comes at a pivotal moment as the digital wallet market is predicted to surpass $16 trillion in transactions by 2028.
  • Ericsson’s Wallet Platform is claimed to support over 400 million registered mobile wallets, processing 2.8 billion transactions valued at over $40 billion monthly.

NHPC Limited to collaborate with Norwegian company for implementation of Floating Solar Energy Technology in India

NHPC Limited to collaborate with Norwegian company for implementation of Floating Solar Energy Technology in India

  • NHPC Limited, the largest organization for hydropower development in India, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with M/s Ocean Sun, a Norwegian company operating as a technology provider to the floating solar industry
  • As per the MoU, NHPC and Ocean Sun will explore key areas of cooperation for demonstration of Ocean Sun’s floating solar energy technology based on photovoltaic panels. The panels would be mounted on hydro-elastic membranes, at relevant sites to be identified by NHPC.
  • The agreement is in continuation of efforts towards sustainable development and addition of renewable energy capacity by NHPC, which is engaged not only in hydro power development but also in various renewable energy projects such as solar, wind and green hydrogen projects.

HUDCO granted ‘Navratna status’ by Department Of Public Enterprises

HUDCO

  • The Department of Public Enterprises (OPE) granted the Navratna Status to Housing & Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO). This status allows IREDA to operate more independently and efficiently.
  • The ‘Navratna status’ is accorded to Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) who are authorized to take up investments of up to ₹1,000 crore without Central nod.
  • They have the room to invest up to 30% of their net worth within a year as long they adhere to the ₹1,000 crore threshold.


SPORTS

MS Dhoni sets new IPL first in CSK’s 78-run thrashing of SRH

MS Dhoni named captain of IPL's greatest all-time team

  • MS Dhoni scripted a new IPL record as he became the first player in the history of the T20 tournament to be part of 150 victories. Dhoni achieved the feat after the Super Kings hammered SunRisers by 78 runs, bowling out the batting powerhouses for just 134 runs at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.
  • MS Dhoni has played 259 matches in the IPL, having been a part of the T20 league since the inaugural edition in 2008. The 42-year-old is the joint-most successful captain in the IPL with 5 titles. Dhoni handed over the reins of the Super Kings to Ruturaj Gaikwad ahead of the ongoing season.
  • MS Dhoni already holds the record of the most successful captain in the IPL with 133 wins. Rohit Sharma is in second spot with 87 victories.

India bags 8 medals in Archery World Cup Stage 1 in Shanghai

India bags 8 medals in Archery World Cup Stage 1 in Shanghai

  • The Indian men’s recurve team won a historic gold medal at the Archery World Cup Stage-1 by defeating the world-champion South Korean team for the first time ever. The gold medal ended a 14-year gold medal drought at the men’s recurve team event at the Archery World Cup.
  • India finished the Archery World Cup Stage 1 in Shanghai with eight medals – five gold, two silvers and one bronze.  This is India’s highest medal tally at any single edition of an archery World Cup.
  • Asian Games champion and World number 3 Jyothi Surekha Vennam of Andhra Pradesh won a hat-trick of gold medals in the compound event. She won gold in the individual, women’s team and mixed team events.

Winner list:

1.Men’s Recurve Team :  Tarundeep Rai, Mrinal Chauhan, Pravin Jadhav, Dhiraj Bommadevara(Gold) 

  1. Mixed Compound : Jyothi and Abhishek Verma(Gold) 
  2. Women’s Individual compound: Jyothi Vennam(Gold) 
  3. Men’s Compound Team: Riyansh, Prathamesh Fuge, Abhishek Verma, Rajat Chauhan(Gold) 
  4. Women’s Compound Team: Avneet Kaur, Parneet Kaur, Aditi Gopichand Swami, Jyothi Surekha Vennam(Gold) 
  5. Men’s Compound Individual : Priyansh (Silver) 
  6. Women’s Individual Recurve :Deepika Kumari(Silver) 
  7. Mixed Recurve Team: Ankita Bhakat,Dhiraj Bommadevara(Bronze) 

EaseMyTrip becomes presenting partner of World Championship of Legends

EaseMyTrip becomes presenting partner of World Championship of Legends

  • EaseMyTrip has announced its partnership as the presenting partner of the World Championship of Legends (WCL), set to commence on July 3, 2024 at Edgbaston Stadium in Birmingham, UK.
  • This partnership underscores our unwavering dedication to championing sporting excellence and curating unforgettable experiences for cricket enthusiasts around the globe. 
  • Six teams will be vying for glory, including India Champions, Australia Champions, Pakistan Champions, England Champions, South Africa Champions, and West Indies Champions. 


APPOINTMENTS

Dr Krishna Ella takes charge as president of Indian Vaccine Manufacturers Association

Dr Krishna Ella takes charge as president of Indian Vaccine Manufacturers Association

  • Bharat Biotech co-founder Krishna M Ella was appointed president of the Indian Vaccine Manufacturers Association (IVMA) for a two-year term from April 2024 to 2026. Krishna M Ella has taken over from Adar C Poonawala.
  • Krishna M Ella aims to strengthen collaboration between vaccine manufacturers, researchers. Policymakers have been asked to accelerate vaccine development and improve production. 
  • Along with the appointment of the President of Krishna M Ella, other important posts of IVMA were also announced. Mahima Datla, managing director of Biological E, has been  appointed vice-chairman. T. Srinivas, chief financial officer (CFO) of Bharat Biotech, will be the treasurer. Dr. Harsh Vardhan will continue as the Director General of IVMA.

Humza Yousaf resigns as Scotland’s first minister

Humza Yousaf resigns as Scotland's first minister

  • Scotland’s first minister, Humza Yousaf, resigned, triggering a leadership contest as the governing Scottish National Party seeks to heal internal divisions and strengthen its position ahead of U.K.-wide parliamentary elections expected later this year.
  • Yousaf’s leadership was under fire after the SNP’s coalition with the Scottish Greens was called off, triggering two no-confidence motions from opposition parties slated for later this week. 
  • Yousaf, who is Scotland’s youngest elected leader and the first Muslim to head a major political party, admitted to underestimating the backlash following the termination of the power-sharing agreement with the Scottish Greens. 

Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar appointed as Deputy Prime Minister

Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar appointed as Deputy Prime Minister

  • In a surprise move, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar was appointed as the country’s deputy prime minister.
  • Dar, 73, a chartered accountant and a veteran politician, belongs to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party.
  • According to a notification issued by the Cabinet Division, the appointment was made by Prime Minister Sharif “with immediate effect and until further orders”.
  • He has served as finance minister in two previous governments. He was considered the party’s answer to all economic problems, serving as finance minister for the fourth and last time in the previous Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) coalition government.

Sarvadanand Barnwal (ISS) appointed as Director in Department of Land Resources

Sarvadanand Barnwal (ISS) appointed as Director in Department of Land Resources

  • Sarvadanand Barnwal, an Indian Statistical Service (ISS) officer of the 2010 batch, has been appointed as Director in the Department of Land Resources. The appointment was made through an order issued by the Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT).
  • Barnwal’s appointment is under the Central Staffing Scheme (CSS) for a period of five years from the date of taking over charge or until further orders, whichever is earlier. He was recommended for the central deputation by the Ministry of Statistics & Programme Implementation.


AWARDS

Lacchu Maharaj Award To Hema Malini, Saira Banu & 8 others

Lacchu Maharaj Award To Hema Malini, Saira Banu & 8 others

  • Noted Hindi film superstars Hema Malini and Saira Banu as well as other prominent personalities from the fields of art and culture, will be honoured with the prestigious Pandit Lacchu Maharaj Award. 
  • The Lacchu Maharaj Award, Instituted in memory of the famous kathak exponent Lacchu Maharaj, was not given after 2014. Thus, the Pandit Lacchu Maharaj Ballet Foundation has decided to honour 10 personalities this year. Due to COVID-19, no awards for 2020 have been announced. 

The awardees are:  

Awardee Award for Year Exponent of Dance form
Uma Sharma (New Delhi)  2015 Kathak
Rama Vaidyanathan (New  Delhi)  2016 Kathak
Uma Dogra (Jaipur)  2017 Kathak
Hema Malini(Mumbai)  2018 Kathak, Film actress
Saira Banu(Mumbai)  2019 Kathak, Film actress 
Sandhaya Puricha, Chairman of Sangeet Natak Akademi(Mumbai)  2020 Bharatanatyam Exponent 
Dr. Malabika   Mitra (Kolkata)  2021 Kathak
Prachi Shah(Mumbai)  2022 Kathak, Film actress
Ashim Bandhu Bhattacharya(Mumbai)  2023 Kathak
Pandit Rajendra Gangani (Kathak)  2024 Kathak

India Today Group’s AI anchor Sana wins global media award

India Today Group's AI anchor Sana wins global media award

  • India Today Group’s AI news anchor, Sana, has won the International News Media Association (INMA)’s 2024 Global Media Award for AI-led newsroom transformation.The awards ceremony was held at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
  • India Today Group has been selected as the best in South Asia for ‘AI-led newsroom transformation’, and the company’s human-collaborative AI anchor, Sana, won first place among national brands for the ‘best use of AI in customer-facing products’.
  • The 2024 Global Media Awards really highlighted how news media companies must think beyond the traditional to connect with their readers in this era of disruption and news avoidance.

MAHE confers honourary doctorate on K.V. Kamath

MAHE confers honourary doctorate on K.V. Kamath

  • Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) held a special convocation in Manipal to confer an honorary doctorate upon KV Kamath, Chairman of National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development (NaBFID) and Chairman of Jio Financial Services Ltd.
  • The ceremony celebrated Kamath’s exceptional leadership in banking, finance, and sustainable development, recognizing his significant contributions to India’s financial sector and global impact.
  • Kamath, renowned for his leadership at NDB, ICICI Bank, and now NaBFID, has set benchmarks in the industry through strategic acumen and innovation.
  • Beyond professional achievements, Kamath’s commitment to social responsibility and sustainable development has been instrumental in promoting inclusive growth and corporate social responsibility practices.


ENVIRONMENT

Rare butterfly species discovered in Arunachal’s Tale sanctuary

Rare butterfly species discovered in Arunachal’s Tale sanctuary

  • A rare butterfly species named Neptis philyra, commonly known as long-streak sailor, has been discovered for the first time in India in Tale Valley Wildlife Sanctuary in Lower Subansiri district of Arunachal Pradesh, by a team of butterfly enthusiasts.
  • Till date, the butterfly species was known to be found across various regions of east Asia, including eastern Siberia, Korea, Japan, central and southwest China.
  • The five-member team, which spotted the species, consists of three butterfly enthusiasts of Bongaigaon district in Assam – Atanu Bose, Mahesh Barua and Abhishek Dutta Choudhury and two from West Bengal Anitava Roy and Tarun Karmakar. The discovery of the species has been formally published in the current issue of the peer-reviewed journal, “Tropical Lepidoptera Research”.
  • The butterfly has serrated wings with rich brownish-black on the upper side and yellow brown on the underside and fore wing white cell streak forming “hockey stick” markings with spots in space.

Synchronised estimation of Nilgiri Tahr begins in Tamil Nadu, parts of Kerala

Synchronised estimation of Nilgiri Tahr begins in Tamil Nadu, parts of Kerala

  • The Forest Department launched the first synchronised estimation of the Nilgiri Tahr, the State animal of Tamil Nadu. The synchronised survey will also cover the Eravikulam and the Silent Valley National Parks of Kerala that are contiguous with the tahr habitats in Tamil Nadu.
  • The census will employ the bounded count and double observer methods to estimate the Nilgiri tahr population. The census will cover key habitats including Eravikulam and Silent Valley National Parks in Kerala, which adjoin the tahr habitats in Tamil Nadu.
  • This census marks a significant, organized effort to gather essential data on the Nilgiri tahr, which will be instrumental in shaping conservation strategies for this species.
  • WWF-India, the Wildlife Institute of India, and the Nature Conservation Foundation are involved in developing the scientific techniques used for this population enumeration.


OBITUARIES

BJP MP, ex-Union minister Sreenivasa Prasad passes away

BJP MP, ex-Union minister Sreenivasa Prasad passes away

  • Veteran politician, BJP MP and former Union Minister V Sreenivasa Prasad died due to age-related ailments in a private Bengaluru hospital. He was 76.
  • He was a six-time MP from Chamarajanagar and also served as MLA from Nanjangud in Mysuru district for two terms. Prasad served as the Union Minister of State for Consumer Affairs Food and Public Distribution in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government from 1999 to 2004.
  • On March 18 this year, Prasad announced his retirement from electoral politics, marking his 50 years in public life. He first contested Assembly elections as an independent in 1974.


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