GK Update 13th July 2021

1. Assam to create new department for indigenous faith and culture

  • The Assam Cabinet has announced the creation of an independent department to protect and preserve the “faith, culture and traditions of tribes and indigenous communities” of the state.
  • The new department would ensure that the state’s indigenous population gets to preserve their faith and traditions, while also providing requisite support to them.
  • Indigenous tribes such as the Bodos, Rabhas, Mishings, along with others have their own religious beliefs and unique traditions, which so far have not received the support necessary for their preservation.
  • The cabinet, during the meeting, agreed that financial and administrative reforms were necessary to ensure speedy implementation of various schemes floated by the government. It decided that departmental committees, headed by commissioners, will be entitled to give its nod for projects worth ₹ 2 crores and below.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Assam Governor: Jagdish Mukhi;
  • Assam Chief Minister: Himanta Biswa Sarma.

2. Rail Cargo movement between India and Nepal gets a big boost

  • India and Nepal have signed a Letter of Exchange(LoE) to revise the 2004 India-Nepal Rail Services Agreement (RSA). The revised agreement allows all authorized cargo train operators to utilize the Indian railway network to carry Nepal’s container and other freight – both bilateral between Indian and Nepal or third countries from Indian ports to Nepal.
  • The authorized cargo train operators include public and private container trains Operators, automobile freight train operators, special freight train operators, or any other operator authorized by Indian Railways.
  • It will allow market forces (such as consumers and buyers) to come up in the rail freight segment in Nepal and is likely to increase efficiency and cost- competitiveness.
  • It will reduce transportation costs for automobiles and certain other products whose carriage takes place in special wagons and will boost rail cargo movement between the two countries.
  • The agreement is another milestone in India’s efforts to enhance regional connectivity under the “Neighbourhood First”.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Prime minister of Nepal: KP Sharma Oli; President: Bidhya Devi Bhandari.
  • Capital of Nepal: Kathmandu; Currency: Nepalese rupee.

3. ICCR will set up the ‘Bangabandhu Chair’ at the Delhi University

  • Delhi University will have a ‘Bangabandhu Chair’ to foster a better understanding of developments in Bangladesh. An MoU was signed between the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and Delhi University in Dhaka to set up this Chair at Delhi University.
  • The Chair will focus on the common heritage of the two countries and subjects like Anthropology, Buddhist Studies, Geography, History, Modern Indian languages including Bangla, Music, Fine Arts, Political Science, International relations and Sociology.
  • The chair will set up to honour Bangladesh’s founding father Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the country’s Liberation War as well as India’s diplomatic ties with Dhaka.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Prime Minister of Bangladesh: Sheikh Hasina; Capital: Dhaka; Currency: Taka.
  • President of Bangladesh: Abdul Hamid.

4. UP population draft bill proposes two-child policy

  • Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath has launched a population policy that aims to incentivise couples who do not have more than two babies. Stating that population control is related to awareness among masses and poverty, Adityanath said every community has been taken care of in Population Policy 2021-2030.
  • The health minister Jai Pratap Singh said Uttar Pradesh is aiming for stability by 2050 and the government is trying to reduce the population growth rate to 2.1 per cent.
  • The UP law commission that has formulated a population control bill said the policy would be voluntary and nobody would be forced to follow any rule.
  • However, if any person decides to on his or her own to not have more than two babies, they will be eligible for government schemes., while those who do not follow the policy will face restrictions in government jobs, availing ration, and other benefits.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • UP Capital: Lucknow;
  • UP Governor: Anandiben Patel;
  • UP Chief minister: Yogi Adityanath.

5. Sophie Ecclestone, Devon Conway win ICC Player of the Month Award

  • England Left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone has been named as ICC Women Player of the Month for June. She is the second English female to win the title after Tammy Beaumont, who was awarded the title in February 2021.
  • In Men’s category, New Zealand opener Devon Conway has bagged ICC Player of the Month for June. He became the first New Zealand player to win the award after an astounding first month in Test cricket.

6. Journalist N N Pillai honoured with BKS Literary Award

  • Journalist and playwright Omchery N N Pillai has been selected for the Bahrain Keraleeya Samajam (BKS)’s Literary Award for 2021. BKS president P V Radhakrishna Pillai, general secretary Varghese Karackal and literary wing secretary Firoz Thiruvathra announced the award.
  • The Jury was headed by the novelist M Mukundan. Literary critic Dr K S Ravikumar, writer and Kerala Chief Secretary Dr V P Joy, and Radhakrishna Pillai were part of the jury. The award constitutes a cash prize of `50,000 and a citation acknowledging the achievement.
  • The award ceremony will be held later in Delhi. “His enormous contributions as a whole to Malayalam language and literature are remarkable, which ultimately led to this award.

7. SAMVEDAN 2021: IIT Madras and Sony India team up to host

  • IIT Madras Pravartak Technologies Foundation (IITM-PTF) and Sony India Software Centre Pvt Ltd have joined hands to organise a national-level hackathon named ‘SAMVEDAN 2021 – Sensing Solutions for Bharat’.
  • With this hackathon, the foundation aims to inspire citizens to use IoT Sensor Board in order to solve India-specific problems of societal interest. It is based on the Sony Semiconductor Solutions Corporation’s SPRESENSE™ Board, which participants can use for this challenge.
  • A team with a maximum of three members can register for the grand challenge, which will be held in three stages.

8. 2022 Khelo India Youth Games to be held in Haryana

  • The state government of Haryana will organise the Khelo India Youth Games 2021 in February 2022.
  • Earlier the sports show was scheduled to be held from November 21 to December 5, 2021, but has been shifted due to the possible third wave of Covid-19 pandemic and keeping in mind that Khelo India Youth Games 2021 are to be held in the Under-18 category.
  • Around 8,500 players will participate in the event of which 5,072 will be athletes, including 2,400 females and 2,672 males.

9. Euro 2020 Final: Italy beat England on penalties

  • The European Championship final pits England and Italy against each other. Italy won 3-2 on penalties. Italy, one of the most decorated teams in the world, have ended a few years of trophy drought.
  • England, on the other hand, we’re in uncharted territory. They haven’t even reached a final since 1966. Italy has already reached the final twice in recent years — in 2000 and 2012 — whereas England hasn’t got close until now. Italy’s Goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma named player of UEFA EURO 2020.

10. Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo wins Golden Boot in EURO 2020

  • Portugal captain and modern-day great Cristiano Ronaldo won the Euro 2020 Golden Boot after finishing as the top-scorer in the tournament.
  • Despite playing just four games, Ronaldo clinched the top honours as he scored five goals.
  • Czech Republic’s Patrik Schick also ended the tournament with five goals but the award went to Ronaldo via the tie-breaker of assists.

11. The Struggle Within: A Memoir of the Emergency authored by Ashok Chakravarti

  • A book titled “The Struggle Within: A Memoir of the Emergency” authored by Ashok Chakravarti. He is an economist who has been providing policy advice to countries, mainly in the African region, for the past forty years.
  • He is currently Senior Economic Advisor to the Government of Zimbabwe, based in Harare. The Book is Published By Harpercollins India.
  • The Struggle Within: A Memoir of the Emergency book deals with one of independent India’s darkest hours during the emergency period.
  • The Emergency (1975-1977) was one of independent India’s darkest hours. In that period, Over 150,000 people were imprisoned without trial; as many as eleven million forcibly sterilized, and countless killed in police firings or otherwise eliminated.

12. A book titled “The Art of Conjuring Alternate Realities”

  • A new book titled ‘The Art of Conjuring Alternate Realities: How Information Warfare Shapes Your World’, authored by Shivam Shankar Singh and Anand Venkatanarayanan. The Book is Published by HarperCollins.
  • The Book deals with human history, societal control was determined by various hierarchies like military, colonialism, mega-corporations and now by information.
  • This book widely talks about how information warfare is shaping your life and world. Parallelly it deals with the operations of political parties, cybercriminals, godmen, national states in manipulating the thoughts.

13. In a first, Himalayan yaks to be insured

  • National Research Centre on Yak (NRCY) in West Kameng district, Arunachal Pradesh has tied up with the National Insurance Company Ltd. for insuring Himalayan Yak.
  • The insurance policy would shield the yak owners against the risks posed by weather calamities, diseases, in-transit mishaps, surgical operations and strikes or riots.
  • The owners of the Yaks would have to get their yaks ear-tagged and provide a proper description in order to get their animals insured.
  • Himalayan Yak is a long-haired domesticated cattle found throughout the Himalayan region of the Indian subcontinent, Tibetan Plateau, Myanmar and as far north as Mongolia and Siberia.
  • The total yak population in India is about 58,000.
  • The Highest Yak Population is in the Union Territories of Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir. It is followed by Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh and West Bengal and Uttarakhand.

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