GK Update 22nd January 2021

1. Cabinet approves Rs 5,282-cr investment for 850 MW Ratle project on Chenab river

  • The Union Cabinet has approved 850 megawatts (MW) Ratle hydropower project worth an Rs. 5281.94 crore on Chenab river in Kishtwar district of Jammu and Kashmir. The project is being implemented under the Centre’s plan to expedite strategically important hydropower projects in the union territory post its reorganization.
  • The project will be developed by a new joint venture company between state-run National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) Ltd and Jammu & Kashmir State Power Development Corporation Ltd (JKSPDC), where NHPC will have a 51% stake in the JV firm, while the balance will be held by JKSPDC.

2. CM to inaugurate first child-friendly police station of U’khand

  • Uttarakhand Chief Minister, Trivendra Singh Rawat will inaugurate the first child-friendly police station of Uttarakhand, which is meant to provide a friendly environment to children associated with crimes.
  • The child-friendly police unit has been set up in the Dalanwala police station with a budget of about Rs 5 lakhs on the recommendation of the Child Protection Committee of Uttarakhand.
  • According to the chairperson of State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR) Usha Negi, the children who are either victims or need proper counselling or visit police station due to other reasons should be provided with a comfortable and unintimidating environment rather than keeping them in a dull and scary atmosphere.
  • To keep children at ease, the walls are painted in bright colours and cartoons and the police personnel will also be dressed in casual clothes rather than their uniforms.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Uttarakhand Chief Minister: Trivendra Singh Rawat.
  • Governor of Uttarakhand: Baby Rani Maurya.

3. Karnataka CM Yediyurappa launches Avalokana software

  • The Karnataka Chief Minister, BS Yediyurappa recently launched Avalokana software. The software will enable the state government to access data on expenditures and sanctions incurred on 1,800 programmes.
  • The software provides a focused eye view on Sustainable Development goals, Scheduled Caste Sub-Plan, Tribal Sub-plan and Centrally Sponsored Schemes.
  • It is a transparent e-governance tool that will provide Assembly constituency-wise release of government grants and allocations to different government programmes.
  • This will help the government to decide on releasing funds based on the expenditure incurred by the department.
  • It will eventually increase the government hold over resources. The software provides a focused view on scheduled caste sub-plan, sustainable development goals and tribal sub-plan and centrally sponsored scheme.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Chief Minister of Karnataka: B.S. Yediyurappa; Governor: Vajubhai Vala.

4. RBI slaps penalty of Rs 2 crore on Standard Chartered Bank

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has imposed a monetary penalty of Rs 2 crore on Standard Chartered Bank–India for delays in reporting of frauds.
  • The penalty has been imposed on the bank for non-compliance with certain directions issued by it contained in the ‘Reserve Bank of India (Frauds – Classification and Reporting by commercial banks and select FIs) Directions 2016’.
  • The notice was issued to the bank advising it to show cause as to why penalty should not be imposed on it for such non-compliance with the directions.
  • After considering the bank’s reply to the notice and oral submissions made in the personal hearing, the RBI concluded that the charge of non-compliance with the aforesaid RBI directions was substantiated and warranted imposition of monetary penalty.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Standard Chartered Bank CEO: Bill Winters.
  • Standard Chartered Bank Headquarters: London, United Kingdom.
  • Standard Chartered Bank Founded: 1969.

5. SBI, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank remain as (D-SIBs)

  • The RBI state-owned SBI, along with private-sector lenders ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank continue to be Domestic Systemically Important Banks (D-SIBs) or institutions which are ‘too big to fail’.
  • SBI, ICICI Bank, and HDFC Bank continue to be identified as Domestic Systemically Important Banks (D-SIBs), under the same bucketing structure as in the 2018 list of D-SIBs.
  • SIBs are subjected to higher levels of supervision so as to prevent disruption in financial services in the event of any failure.
  • The Reserve Bank had issued the framework for dealing with D-SIBs in July 2014.
  • The D-SIB framework requires the central to disclose the names of banks designated as D-SIBs starting from 2015 and place these lenders in appropriate buckets depending upon their Systemic Importance Scores (SISs).
  • SIBs are seen as ‘too big to fail (TBTF)’, creating the expectation of government support for them in times of financial distress. These banks also enjoy certain advantages in funding markets.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra.
  • Reserve Bank of India Establishment: 1 April 1935.
  • Reserve Bank of IndiaGovernor: Shaktikanta Das.

6. Axis Bank launches Aura Credit Card with health, wellness benefits

  • Axis Bank has unveiled a credit ‘AURA’ exclusively loaded with several health and wellness benefits for its users at an affordable price.
  • Axis Bank has partnered with Poshvine to offer benefits and specialists such as Decathlon, Practo, Fitternity, IndushealthPlus, 1MG etc., to offer a complete and unique health & wellness solution to the cardholders.
  • Cardholders will get a discount on annual medical checkup through IndushealthPlus.
  • It offers up to 4 free online video consultations for a month, with round the clock access to doctors on all 21 specialities. This is offered by Procto.
  • It also offers 4 free online interactive fitness sessions for a month by Fitternity.
  • Through this card, the users can have access to 16 recorded training sessions for one month and can choose from a wide range of sessions such as yoga and cross-functional training programs, etc.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Axis Bank Commenced operations: 1994.
  • Axis Bank Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra.
  • Axis Bank Tagline: Badhti Ka Naam Zindagi Managing.
  • Axis Bank MD and CEO: Amitabh Chaudhry.

7. Andaman and Nicobar Command to conduct joint military exercise ‘Kavach’

  • The Indian Army is to conduct a large scale joint military exercise Kavach in the Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal. The exercise is to be held under the aegis of Andaman and Nicobar Command.
  • The Joint Military Exercise Kavach will involve Indian Navy, Indian Army, Indian Air Force and Indian Coast Guard.
  • During the exercise, the joint forces will execute high-density offensive and defence measures in the Andaman sea and Bay of Bengal. Also, they will carry out amphibious landing operations, helicopter-borne insertion of special forces from sea culminating in tactical follow-on operations on land.
  • The exercise is to fine-tune the joint war capabilities of all the three forces of India.
  • Kavach Exercise will also involve coordinated air and maritime strikes, synergized application of maritime surveillance assets, air defence and landing operations.
  • Along with Kavach Exercise, the Joint Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance (ISR) Exercise will also be held. The ISR will validate the capabilities of intelligence gathering. Also, it will validate the capabilities of information sharing from space, land, air and sea.

8. The Global Risks Report 2021 released

  • The World Economic Forum (WEF) has released the Global Risks Report 2021, 16th Edition. The findings of the report are based on the Global Risks Perception Survey (GRPS) undertaken by over 650 members of WEF’s diverse leadership communities. The Report is prepared with Strategic Partners, Marsh McLennan in Partnership with SK Group and Zurich Insurance Group.
  • The report is being released before WEF’s upcoming virtual Davos Agenda scheduled to be held between January 25-29, 2021. The main objective behind the publishing of the report is to enable better preparation by Government & other International Communities during the times of crisis.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • World Economic Forum Founder and Executive Chairman: Klaus Schwab.
  • World Economic Forum Headquarters: Cologny, Switzerland.

9. MeITY and AWS announced Quantum Computing Applications Lab in India

  • The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has announced the establishment of a Quantum Computing Applications Lab in partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS).
  • The move will give select researchers, scientists access to Amazon’s Bracket cloud-based quantum computing service.
  • It is to be implemented by the Department of Science and Technology operating under the Ministry of Science and Technology.
  • The mission focuses on fundamental science, technology development and addresses the issues concerning the national priorities.
  • It will prepare next-generation skilled manpower and encourages entrepreneurship and startup ecosystem development.
  • The Union Budget 2020-21 had proposed to spend Rs 8,000 crores on the National Mission on Quantum Technologies and Applications.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Minister of Electronics and Information Technology: Ravi Shankar Prasad.
  • Amazon Web Services CEO: Andy Jassy.
  • Amazon Web Services Founded: 2006.
  • Amazon Web Services Headquarters: Seattle, Washington, United States.

10. Malayalam actor Unnikrishnan Namboothiri passes away

  • Veteran Malayalam actor, Unnikrishnan Namboothiri has passed away while contracting COVID-19. He made his acting debut in 1996 with Desadanam. However, he became a household name among the Malayalam film audience for his performance as a witty grandfather in Kalyanaraman (2002).
  • Unnikrishnan is well known for movies like Kaikudunna Nilavu (1998), Kaliyattam (1997), Pammal K Sambandam (2002), Sadanandante Samayam (2003), Madhuranombarakattu (2000), Rappakal (2005), and Pokkiri Raja (2010).

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