GK Update 30th June 2021

1. Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad launches ‘itat e-dwar’

  • Union Minister for Law & Justice, Communications and Electronics & IT, Ravi Shankar Prasad has formally launched the e-filing portal of Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT), ‘itat e-dwar’, in New Delhi.
  • The newly developed e-Filing Portal would enable the parties to file their Appeals, Miscellaneous Applications, documents, paper books, etc., electronically. The portal will enable the online filing of appeals, applications and documents by various parties.
  • According to Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, the launch of the e-filing portal of the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT), should be seen as a larger narrative of transformation the country is undergoing through the digital medium.

2. Centre inaugurates Asia’s longest and world’s fifth-longest High Speed Track

  • Minister of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, Prakash Javadekar has inaugurated NATRAX- the High-Speed Track(HST) in Indore which is the longest such track in Asia. NATRAX, developed in an area of 1000 acres of land, is a one-stop solution for all sorts of high-speed performance tests for the widest categories of vehicles from 2 wheelers to heavy tractor-trailers.
  • Launching the world-class 11.3 km High-Speed Track, Javadekar stated that India is destined to become a hub of automobiles, manufacturing, and spare parts.
  • The NATRAX centre has multiple test capabilities like measurements of maximum speed, acceleration, constant speed fuel consumption, emission tests through real road driving simulation, high-speed handling and stability evaluation during manoeuvred such as lane change, high-speed durability testing, etc. and is a Centre of excellence for Vehicle Dynamics.

3. PM Modi Launches Japanese-style Zen Garden and Kaizen Academy

  • Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi virtually inaugurated a Zen Garden and Kaizen Academy at Ahmedabad Management Association (AMA) premises in Ahmedabad. These two new initiatives are part of PM’s vision of creating a ‘Mini-Japan’ in Gujarat.
  • The newly launched Zen Garden in Ahmedabad will showcase several elements of Japanese art, culture, landscape and architecture.
  • The Zen garden features a statue of Lord Buddha. The garden is built in partnership with the Japan Information and Study Centre at AMA and Indo-Japan Friendship Association (IJFA), Gujarat, supported by the Hyogo International Association (HIA), Japan.

4. European Space Agency to hire first disabled astronaut

  • The European Space Agency will hire and launch the world’s first physically disabled astronaut. It received 22000 applicants for this recruitment call. ESA is developing technologies for para-astronaut. It will give a message to the world that ‘Space is for everyone’.
  • European Space Agency is facing tough competition from private players and other space agencies for launching commercial satellites. Amazon founder Bezos will become the first man to go into space on his own rocket in July 2021.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • European Space Agency is an intergovernmental organization of 22 member states;
  • European Space Agency was established in 1975 and headquartered in Paris.

5. China turns on world’s 2nd-biggest hydropower dam

  • The Government of China officially turned on the first two generating units of the Baihetan Dam, the world’s second-biggest hydroelectric dam, to start generating energy. The Baihetan Dam is set up on the Jinsha River, in southwestern China.
  • The dam is a 289-meter-tall (954-foot-tall) double-curvature arch dam, having 16 generating units.
  • Each unit will have to generate a capacity of 1 million kilowatts, making it the second biggest in size after the “Three Gorges Dam” opened in 2003 on the Yangtze, with 22.5 million kilowatts of generating capacity.
  • Through the Baihetan Dam, the Chinese government aims to curb surging fossil fuel demand by building more hydropower capacity.
  • Both the dams have been built by the state-owned Three Gorges Group Corp., the world’s biggest investor in hydro, solar and wind generation.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • China Capital: Beijing.
  • China Currency: Renminbi.
  • China President: Xi Jinping.

6. Philippines included in FATF grey list

  • Philippines has been included in the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). FATF has released its grey list of jurisdictions that will be subjected to increased monitoring. In addition to the Philippines, Haiti, Malta, and South Sudan have also been added to the grey list.
  • Now, these jurisdictions will be required to submit progress reports to the FATF thrice a year. The Philippines was removed from the blacklist of FATF in 2005. It was previously included in FATF’s blacklist in 2000. 
  • FATF grey list is the list in which jurisdictions under increased monitoring are placed. If a jurisdiction is placed under increased monitoring, this means that jurisdiction is committed to resolving strategic deciencies within agreed timeframes.
  • Jurisdictions under the FATF grey list actively work with FATF to address strategic deciencies in their regime to fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Philippines President: Rodrigo Duterte.
  • Philippines Capital: Manila.
  • Philippines Currency: Philippine peso.

7. Shambhu Nath Srivastava appointed as the chairman of IFUNA

  • Justice (Retd.) Shambhu Nath Srivastava, a former judge of Allahabad High Court and former chief Lokayukta of Chhattisgarh, has been appointed the chairman of the Indian Federation of United Nations Associations (IFUNA).
  • Indian Federation of United Nations Associations, a non-profit organisation to promote objectives of the United Nations and its specialised agencies. IFUNA enjoys special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the UN.

8. Shafali Verma becomes youngest Indian to make debut in all formats

  • Opener Shafali Verma has become the youngest Indian cricketer to make a debut in all formats, when India took on England in the first ODI in Bristol. She took 17 years and 150 days to make her debut in all formats.
  • She has become the fifth-youngest cricketer overall in the list of all format debuts. The list is topped by Afghanistan’s Mujeeb Ur Rahman at 17 years and 78 days is the youngest player to play all formats, followed by former England wicket-keeper Sarah Taylor. Australia’s Elysse Perry is third on the list, followed by Mohammad Amir.

9. Indian shooter Rahi Sarnobat wins Gold at ISSF World Cup shooting

  • India’s Rahi Sarnobat clinched the gold medal in the women’s 25m pistol event at the ISSF shooting World Cup. She is the first Indian to win one silver and two bronze medals in the ongoing tournament.
  • She scored 591 out of a maximum of 600 in the qualifying stage. France’s Mathilde Lamolle won a silver medal in the final. Russian Vitalina Batsarashkina won the bronze medal. Indian shooter Manu Bhaker finished at 7 positions.
  • This is the last competition before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. ISSF World Cup 2021 is being held in Osijek, Croatia. 

10. ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 to be held in UAE

  • ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, originally slated to be held in India, will now be shifted to the UAE. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), which holds the hosting rights of this year’s event, will inform the International Cricket Council (ICC) in this regard. The T20 World Cup was postponed last year due to the pandemic.
  • The BCCI will remain the hosts of the event, which will now be held in Dubai International Stadium, the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, the Sharjah Stadium, and the Oman Cricket Academy Ground, from 17 October to 14 November 2021.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Secretary of BCCI: Jay Shah.
  • President of BCCI: Sourav Ganguly.
  • Headquarters of BCCI: Mumbai, Maharashtra; Founded: December 1928.

11. Anshula Rao first woman cricketer to get dope ban

  • Madhya Pradesh all-rounder Anshula Rao became the first women cricketer to be handed a four-year ban after failing the dope test. She was handed the ban by the panel of the National Anti-Doping Agency for faking a dope test which dates back to July 2020.
  • Earlier she was also found guilty of consuming a banned anabolic steroid ’19- Norandrosterone. The U-23 cricketer has taken part in several BCCI organised domestic tournaments. She last took part in the 2019-20 U-23 event organised by the governing body.

12. International Asteroid Day: 30 June

  • International Asteroid Day is observed globally on 30th June every year. International Asteroid Day aims to raise public awareness about the asteroid impact hazard and to inform the public about the crisis communication actions to be taken at the global level in case of a credible near-Earth object threat.
  • In December 2016 the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/71/90, declaring 30 June International Asteroid Day in order to “observe each year at the international level the anniversary of the Tunguska impact over Siberia, Russian Federation, on 30 June 1908, and to boost public awareness about the asteroid impact hazard.”

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) Director: Simonetta Di Pippo.

13. International Day of Parliamentarism: 30 June

  • International Day of Parliamentarism is observed globally on 30 June every year. The International Day of Parliamentarism is a time to review the progress that parliaments have made in achieving some key goals to be more representative and move with the times, including carrying out self-assessments, working to include more women and young MPs, and adapting to new technologies.
  • The Day was established in 2018 through a United Nations General Assembly Resolution. This day also acknowledges the formation of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the global organization of parliaments that was established in 1889.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Inter-Parliamentary Union Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.
  • Inter-Parliamentary Union President: Gabriela Cuevas Barron.
  • Inter-Parliamentary Union Founded: 1889.
  • Inter-Parliamentary Union Secretary-General: Martin Chungong.

14. CJI NV Ramana release a book titled “Anomalies in Law and Justice”

  • Chief Justice of India Justice NV Ramana has released former Supreme Court judge RV Raveendran’s book “Anomalies in Law and Justice”. 
  • The book is an attempt to explain to the layman that the law and the legal system is still evolving and that it requires more critical thinking to resolve issues that have persisted in the system for a long time. The book covers procedural as well as substantive law relating to civil procedure, electoral reforms and the alternate dispute resolution mechanism.

15. National Award-winning cinematographer and director Sivan passes away

  • Mollywood’s veteran cinematographer and director, Sivan passed away recently. The ace cinematographer rose to fame in the Malayalam film industry with the photographs, he took for a film titled Chemeen.
  • He has won a National Award three times in his career. His popular films include Abhayam, Yagam, Keshu, Kochu Kochu Mohangal, Oru Yathra, etc.


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