Top Current Affairs of the Week (25 - 31 July 2021)

By Dhruv Kumar|Updated : August 1st, 2021

Weightlifter Mirabai Chanu wins silver at the Tokyo Olympics

  • India’s weightlifter Saikhom Mirabai Chanu (26 years) has claimed silver medal in the Women’s 49kg category at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
  • This is the first medal for India at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics Game.
  • She lifted a total of 202kg (87kg in snatch and 115kg in clean and jerk).
  • China’s Zhihui Hou bagged gold after lifting a total of 210kg, creating a new Olympic Record.
  • Indonesia’s Windy Cantika Aisah won bronze with a total of 194kg.

Weightlifter Mirabai Chanu wins silver at the Tokyo Olympics

  • India’s weightlifter Saikhom Mirabai Chanu (26 years) has claimed silver medal in the Women’s 49kg category at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
  • This is the first medal for India at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics Game.
  • She lifted a total of 202kg (87kg in snatch and 115kg in clean and jerk).
  • China’s Zhihui Hou bagged gold after lifting a total of 210kg, creating a new Olympic Record.
  • Indonesia’s Windy Cantika Aisah won bronze with a total of 194kg.

‘An Ordinary Life: Portrait of an Indian Generation’ by Ashok Lavasa

  • Ashok Lavasa has come out with a book titled as ‘An Ordinary Life: Portrait of an Indian Generation’.
  • In this book, he narrated about his father, Udai Singh, and his own experience on how his father’s principles served as a moral compass in his life, and can in ours too.
  • He resigned as election commissioner in 2020 to become vice-president of the Asian Development Bank
  • He also served as the Finance Secretary, MoEFCC Secretary and Civil Aviation Secretary of India.

Amit Shah inaugurates Inter-State Bus Terminal at Shillong, Meghalaya

  • Union Home Minister Amit Shah has inaugurated Inter-State Bus Terminal at Maviyang, Shillong, Meghalaya.
  • It is being built here with the help of Govt of India and Meghalaya at a cost of Rs 50 crore
  • It will improve road connectivity of Northeast and will make of the region an economic hub
  • He also inaugurated Cryogenic Oxygen Plant and Paediatric Ward at Umsavali
  • Govt is planning to link the capitals of all the Northeast states by rail, road and airways before 2023-24

Environment Minister participates in G20 Environment Meeting 2021

  • Union Environment Minister of India, Bhupender Yadav participated in the two-day G20 Environment Ministerial Meeting 2021 virtually, along with Minister of State for Environment Ashwini Choubey and senior officials.
  • The host city of this meet was Naples, Italy.
  • The meeting was held as part of 16th G20 Leaders’ Summit, scheduled to be held in October 2021, under the Presidency of Italy, with primary theme of ‘People, Planet and Prosperity’.

Liverpool removed from UNESCO World Heritage list

  • Liverpool Maritime Mercantile City (UK) has been removed from its world heritage list by UNESCO World Heritage Committee
  • Liverpool waterfront has been stripped off as a historic heritage site due to irreversible loss of attributes conveying the outstanding universal value and substantial building interventions.
  • International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) is responsible for recommending cultural sites and World Conservation Union (IUCN) selects natural sites.

North-East India Traditional Fashion Week 2021 inaugurated

  • Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment, Virendra Kumar has virtually inaugurated ‘5th North-East India Traditional Fashion Week (NEIFW) 2021’
  • It promotes indigenous traditional skills across India including North-East and preserve the heritage of each community of North-East through divyangjan movement
  • It is a part of India@75 National Celebration
  • It is organized by National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities (NIEPVD), Dehradun

Home Minister Amit Shah inaugurates various schemes in Guwahati

  • Home Minister, Amit Shah has laid the foundation stone of Tamulpur Medical College and Hospital and distributed cheque of Rs 1 lakh each to the next of the kin of 100 selected COVID-19 victims under State Govt’s ‘Prarthana Achoni’ at Srimanta Sankardeva Kalakshetra, Guwahati.
  • This is result of the Bodo Accord.
  • Assam will be a hub for Cancer treatment and research.
  • He also inaugurated a new unit of Radio Therapy at Guwahati Medical College and Hospital

NITI AAYOG -TRIFED join hands for implementation of Van Dhan Yojana

  • TRIFED is collaborating with NITI Aayog to successfully implement the Van Dhan Yojana in the districts that have been identified as aspirational districts by NITI Aayog
  • This collaboration will completely transform tribal ecosystem across India
  • Van Dhan Yojana is a component of Mechanism for Marketing of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) through MSP & Development of Value Chain for MFP’ and was launched on 14th April, 2018.
  • It is implemented by TRIFED as the nodal agency.

‘Kargil Vijay Diwas 2021’ being observed today

  • Kargil Vijay Diwas is celebrated on 26th July in honor of the heroes of the Kargil war of 1999.
  • On this day in 1999, the Indian Army announced that Pakistani forces and intruders have been driven out from all occupied territories.  
  • To concur Kargil war ‘Operation Vijay’ (II) was launched. 
  • 1st Operation Vijay was launched in 1961 that led to the capture of Goa and Daman and Diu.
  • Indian Airforce along with Army also launched ‘Operation White Sea’ during the Kargil war.

Kakatiya Rudreswara temple inscribed by UNESCO as World Heritage Site

  • Kakatiya Rudreswara Temple has been inscribed by UNESCO as World Heritage Site (39th site in India).
  • Also known as Ramappa temple, it is located in Palampet village in the newly formed Mulugu District in Telangana.
  • The 13th-century temple is probably the only temple known by its chief sculptor, Ramappa.
  • This is the first site that got heritage tag from UNESCO ever since Telangana state formed in 2014.

World’s Largest Floating Solar Farm Proposed for Indonesia

  • Sunseap Group, a solar energy system developer, owner, and operator in Singapore plans to build the world’s largest floating solar farm in Indonesia.
  • The floating photovoltaic system is expected to have a capacity of 2.2 GW.
  • It will cover 1600 hectares of the Duriangkang Reservoir on Batam Island and cost about $2 billion to construct.
  • An agreement between Sunseap and the Batam Indonesia free zone authority to move forward with the project was signed on July 19.

Corteva Agriscience inks pact to promote sustainable rice production in UP

  • Corteva Agriscience has signed a 3-year project with the 2030 Water Resources Group (2030 WRG) hosted by the World Bank, to promote sustainable rice cultivation in UP. 
  • The project provides a framework for Corteva2030 WRG, and a task force of multiple stakeholders to work towards transforming 40,000 acres of land from traditional methods of transplanting rice to the Direct Seeded Rice technique.
  • This practice will reduce agricultural water consumption by 35-37%. 

Arunachal Pradesh, IIM Shillong to collaborate as knowledge partners

  • Arunachal Pradesh govt signed an MoU with Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Centre for Policy Research and Analysis-IIM Shillong for collaborating as a knowledge partner
  • Aim: Capacity building of State Govt and to set up a satellite centre of IIM-S in the State and for necessary policy interventions
  • The MoU aims at promoting mutual agreement b/w the Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Centre for Policy Research Analysis of IIM Shillong and the Finance Planning and Investment Department of the state.

D Subbarao Unveils the book titled 'Bank With A Soul: Equitas'

  • Duvvuri Subbarao, Former Governor, RBI released Dr. C K Garyali’s book, ‘Bank with a Soul: Equitas’.
  • C K Garyali is a founder trustee of EDIT (Equitas Development Initiative Trust)
  • The book chronicles the journey of Equitas and EDIT in transforming the lives of women with frequent social reform initiatives helping them set up micro-enterprises and pioneering financial inclusivity right from its inception.
  • The foreword of the book has been written by Duvvuri Subbarao. 

Nasa selects SpaceX for Jupiter moon mission

  • NASA selected SpaceX to launch its probe of Jupiter's moon Europa, which has liquid oceans that could harbour life.
  • The Europa Clipper mission, scheduled to launch in October 2024 on a Falcon Heavy rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, is worth $178 million.
  • Europa Clipper will conduct a detailed survey of the icy Jupiter moon Europa and use a sophisticated suite of science instruments to investigate whether the moon has conditions suitable for life.

RBI to introduce digital currency in phased manner

  • The RBI is considering a “phased introduction" of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC).
  • It was announced by Deputy Governor T. Rabi Sankar.
  • It will need legal changes to be made in the nation’s foreign exchange rules and information-technology laws.
  • CBDC is a legal tender that would be issued by the central bank in a digital form.
  • It is exchangeable one-to-one with fiat currency and it would appear as a liability on a central bank’s balance sheet.

Priya Malik wins Gold at 2021 World Cadet Wrestling Championship

  • Indian junior wrestler Priya Malik has won Gold Medal at the 2021 World Cadet Wrestling Championship in 73-kg category
  • Championship was held in Budapest, Hungary
  • She defeated Kseniya Patapovich by 5-0
  • Cadet World Championship is a tournament where the best Greco-Roman, Freestyle and Women wrestlers below the age of 17 compete
  • Indian team bagged as many as 13 medals, including 5 Golds at the Championship
  • Priya had won gold at Khelo India youth games in Pune in 2019.

Kandla becomes first Green SEZ with IGBC Platinum Rating

  • Kandla SEZ (KASEZ) has been awarded with IGBC Platinum Rating and is the First Green SEZ to achieve IGBC Green Cities Platinum Rating for Existing Cities.
  • KASEZ is the oldest export zone in the country and has become the first green industrial city in India to receive a platinum rating in the industrial cities category.
  • KASEZ has increased to 3.5 lakh trees from 25,000 trees in 2019.
  • Most of these trees have been planted post 2019, using Miyawaki forestation method.

Philippines became first country to approve Golden Rice for planting

  • Philippines will become the first country in the world to cultivate Golden Rice to help reduce childhood malnutrition
  • Golden Rice was developed by Dept of Agriculture-Philippine Rice Research Institute (DA-PhilRice) in partnership with International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) to contain additional levels of beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A.
  • It is genetically engineered to provide up to 50% of EAR for vitamin A of young children.

Indian Naval Ship Talwar to participate in Exercise Cutlass Express 2021

  • Indian Naval Ship Talwar is participating in annual maritime exercise titled as Exercise Cutlass Express 2021, which is being conducted from 26 July to 6 August 2021 along the East Coast of Africa.
  • 2021 edition includes 12 Eastern African countries, US, UK, India and international organisations like International Maritime Organisation, UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Interpol, European Union Naval Force, Critical Maritime Routes Indian Ocean and EUCAP Somalia.

I-STEM Phase II project launched

  • I-STEM project has entered 2nd phase and accorded extension for 5 years, until 2026
  • Indian Science Technology and Engineering facilities Map (I-STEM):
    • It is a national web portal for sharing R&D facilities
    • Launched: January 2020
    • It is an initiative of Principal Scientific Adviser office under PM Science, Technology and Innovation Advisory Council (PM-STIAC) mission.
  • Under Phase II, it will host indigenous technology products listed through digital catalogue

Web based portal launched

  • Ministry of Women and Child Development has launched web based portal named to facilitate submission of applications, identification of children eligible to receive support under 'PM CARES for Children' scheme.
  • This portal will be regularly updated with necessary information.
  • PM CARES for Children scheme: It was announced for supporting children who have lost both parents or surviving parent or legal guardian or adoptive parents due to COVID-19

Govt to set up Centre for Bio-Resources & Sustainable Development

  • Ministry of Science and Technology will set up Centre for Bio-Resources and Sustainable Development as a Centre of Excellence in the Northeast
  • It was sanctioned by Dept of Biotechnology
  • Location of the project: Kimin, Papum Pare in Arunachal Pradesh.
  • It will facilitate the region to use organic food potential and help in exploring many vast areas and to find less-known new species 
  • It will improve the cultural, social and economic status of the people of North Eastern

WCD Minister Smriti Zubin Irani to launch 24/7 helpline number

  • WCD Minister, Smriti Zubin Irani will be launching 24/7 helpline number for women affected by violence.
  • Aim: To provide round the clock emergency and non-emergency complaints and counselling services to women affected by violence
  • This helpline will link women’s with appropriate authorities such as police, hospitals, District Legal Service Authority, psychological services through a single uniform number
  • It will be functional round-the-clock to facilitate help to women.

India placed among 10 Agricultural Produce Exporters of 2019: WTO Report

  • India has been placed among the top 10 list of the countries exporting agricultural produce in 2019, according to World Trade Organisation (WTO) report on trends in world agricultural trade in recent 25 years.
  • Last such WTO report was released in 1995, in which India was not in top 10.
  • India has outclassed New Zealand to be ranked at 9th spot.
  • Top Three Nations in the List: European Union (EU), US and Brazil.

Govt to set-up Centre of Excellence for Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming

  • Govt has decided to set up National Centre of Excellence for Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming and Comics for creating a world-class talent pool in India to cater to the Indian as well as global industry.
  • It will be set up in collaboration with IIT, Bombay.
  • Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute and Film and Television Institute of India run courses on Animation and VFX to support skilled manpower in the animation and VFX sector

Veteran actress Jayanthi passes away in Bengaluru

  • Well-known southern actor Jayanthi (76 years) passed away due to age related ailments in Bengaluru
  • She started her acting career in 1963 and had starred in over 500 films that span across five languages including Kannada, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam and Hindi.
  • She was fondly known as Abhinaya Sharadhe (Goddess of acting) in Kannada industry.
  • Awards: Karnataka State Film Awards and Filmfare Awards
  • Films: Jenu Goodu, Chandavalliya Thota, Padagoti, Mugaraasi, Kanna Nalama

Marathi Poet Satish Kalsekar passes away in Maharashtra

  • Bangladesh's legendary folk and pop singer Fakir Alamgir (71 years) passed away due to complications from COVID-19
  • After the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971, he emerged as a Gono Sangeet singer
  • He was a key member of cultural organisations 'Kranti Shilpi Gosthi' and 'Gana Shilpi Gosthi' and played an important role during Bangladesh's 1969 uprising.
  • He joined the 'Swadhin Bangla Betar Kendra'
  • He also founded the cultural organization 'Wrishiz Shilpi Gosthi' in 1976

Basavaraj Bommai elected as 23rd Chief Minister of Karnataka

  • Basavaraj S Bommai (61 years) has been unanimously elected as the new Chief Minister of Karnataka.
  • He will succeed BS Yediyurappa, who resigned on July 26, 2021.
  • Prior to this, he was the Home Minister in the BSY government.
  • He is a 3-time member of Karnataka Legislative Assembly from Shiggaon since 2008.
  • He was a member of Karnataka Legislative Council between 1998 and 2008.
  • He previously served as Minister for Water Resources and Cooperation between 2008 to 2013.

Dholavira inscribed as India’s 40th UNESCO World Heritage Site

  • Dholavira, Harappan City in Gujarat’s Rann of Kutchch has been inscribed as 40th UNESCO World Heritage Site of India with effect from July 27, 2021.
  • The historic of ‘Dholavira’ was on the UNESCO’s tentative list since 2014.
  • Dholavira: a Harappan city’ is one of the very few well preserved urban settlements in South Asia dating from the 3rd to mid-2nd millennium BCE.
  • With this, India has entered the Super-40 club for World Heritage Site inscriptions.

Indo-Russia Joint Military Drill ‘Exercise INDRA 2021’

  • Indo-Russia Joint Military Drill ‘Exercise INDRA 2021’ is to be held in August 2021 at Volgograd, Russia
  • It is the 12th Edition of Indo-Russia joint military exercise that will be held from 1 to 13 August 2021.
  • 250 personnel from both the nations will form part of this exercise that will involve conduct of counter terror operations against international terror groups, under UN mandate.
  • It will strengthen mutual confidence and interoperability between both armies.

World Hepatitis Day: 28 July

  • World Hepatitis Day is observed every year on 28 July to raise global awareness of the burden of viral hepatitis, an inflammation of the liver that causes a range of health problems, including liver cancer.
  • 28 July was chosen for World Hepatitis Day as it is the birthday of Nobel-prize winning scientist Dr Baruch Blumberg, who discovered hepatitis B virus (HBV).
  • Theme of World Hepatitis Day 2021: ‘Hepatitis Can’t Wait’.

Japan’s Yuto Horigome wins Olympics’ First Gold for Skateboarding

  • Yuto Horigome (22 years) of Japan has won the first ever skateboarding competition at the Tokyo Olympic Games.
  • He scored 37.18 points to win the first ever Olympic Gold medal for skateboarding in the men’s street skating competition, held at Ariake Urban Sports Center, Tokyo
  • Kelvin Hoefler of Brazil won silver and Jagger Eaton of United States clinched the bronze.
  • Skateboarding's inclusion into the Olympics marks a turning point for the sport, that was originated in US

Puri becomes India’s first city to provide quality drinking tap water

  • Puri (Odisha) became first Indian city where people can avail high quality drinking water directly from the tap on 24-hour 
  • Due to this, people will need not have to store or filter drinking water.
  • No metropolitan city in India has such facility till now.
  • Similar facilities are available only in cities like London, New York and Singapore.
  • Puri would no more be burdened with 400 metric tonne of plastic waste. Water fountains have been developed at 400 locations in Puri.

ISRO gears to launch its Merchandise Programme

  • ISRO has come up with the customised-themed merchandise programme in partnership with multiple companies to create awareness and kindling interest of students, children and the public in the domain of space and technology
  • So far, eight companies have registered with ISRO on a non-exclusive basis with registration fee regarding customised ISRO-theme-based articles/models and it includes Indic Inspirations (Pune), 1947IND (Bengaluru) and Ankur Hobby Centre (Ahmedabad).

Carissa Moore becomes Olympic women's surf champion

  • U. S. surfer Carissa Moore is the first woman to ever win a Gold medal at the Olympics women's surf champion.
  • She defeated Bianca Buitendag of South Africa and registered a score of 14.93.
  • Italo Ferreira of Brazil has defeated Kanoa Igarashi of Japan with massive lead in men's surfing event and secured gold medal
  • Surfing made its Olympic debut during three days of competition at Tsurigasaki Beach, in Chiba province, 40 miles from Tokyo.

World Nature Conservation Day: 28th July

  • World Nature Conservation Day is observed on July 28 every year to raise awareness to protect Mother Earth.
  • Aim: To conserve the animals and trees that are on the verge of going extinct from the natural environment of the Earth.
  • Conservation is the principle of resource use, allocation, and protection of the health of the natural world, which is important for both renewable and non-renewable energy.

Central & South Asia connectivity conference 2021 held

  • Uzbekistan hosted high-level International Conference titled as ‘Central and South Asia: Regional Connectivity. Challenges and Opportunities’ at Tashkent.
  • The conference was an initiative of the President of Uzbekistan, Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
  • Delegates from over 40 countries and about 30 international organizations, and heads of think tanks participated in the conference.
  • Minister of External Affairs of India Dr. S. Jaishankar also participated in the conference.

Sunseap to build world’s largest floating solar farm in Indonesia

  • Sunseap Group in Singapore has planned to spend $2 billion for building the world’s largest floating solar farm and the energy storage system in Duriangkang Reservoir, Batam Island, Indonesian.
  • It will double renewable power generation capacity of Indonesia.
  • It will be the largest solar floating farm in the world, spanning around 1,600 hectares
  • Construction of the ambitious project is due to begin in 2022 and is planned for completion in 2024.

International Tiger Day: 29th July

  • International Tiger Day (Global Tiger Day) is observed every year on July 29 to raise awareness for tiger conservation
  • The day was introduced in 2010 at the Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit in Russia to put in place a global system for protecting the natural habitats of tigers
  • During the Summit, 13 tiger range countries came together to create Tx2 to double the wild tigers by 2022.
  • Theme/Slogan for 2021 International Tiger Day celebration: Their Survival is in our hands

Brazil garden Sitio Burle Marx receives UNESCO World Heritage status

  • Landscape garden in Brazil's Rio de Janeiro, Sitio Burle Marx site has been added to UNESCO’s list of World Heritage sites
  • The garden features more than 3,500 species of plants native to Rio and is considered a laboratory for botanical and landscape experimentation
  • It has been named after Burle Marx, Brazilian landscape architect whose designs of parks and gardens made him world-famous
  • It is the 23rd Brazilian location recognized on UNESCO’s list of World Heritage sites

Indore selected for International Clean Air Catalyst Programme

  • Indore (Madhya Pradesh) or the cleanest city of India has become the only city from India to be selected for International Clean Air Catalyst Programme
  • Tenure: 5 Years
  • Aim: to purify the air in the city with the cooperation of Indore Municipal Corporation and Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board.
  • Clean Air Catalyst: Flagship programme launched by US Agency for International Development (USAID) and led by World Resources Institute and Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)

Arjuna Award-winning Badminton Legend Nandu Natekar passes away

  • Legendary Indian badminton player Nandu Natekar (88 years) passed away in Pune due to age-related ailments.
  • He won over 100 national and international titles for India in his career spanning 15 years.
  • He was the recipient of first Arjuna Award, instituted in 1961.
  • He won the Men’s Singles title in the Selangor International Tournament in Kuala Lumpur to win the first international title by an Indian badminton player in 1956.

Amit Shah inaugurates Greater Sohra Water Supply Scheme in Meghalaya

  • Union Home Minister Amit Shah along with Meghalaya CM Conrad K. Sangma has inaugurated Greater Sohra Water Supply Scheme at Sohra in Meghalaya
  • Sohra is also known as Cherrapunji.
  • Under this, pure drinking water will be provided through taps to Sohra Town and 12 other habitations close to Sohra in East Khasi Hills.
  • For this, govt will tap the stream sources of Wah Lyngksiar waterfall and Law Sanlait spring.
  • Apart from this, he also launched ‘Sohra Afforestation Project’

Madhya Pradesh announces Ayush scheme named ‘Devaranya Yojana’

  • Madhya Pradesh Govt has prepared Ayush-based economic up-gradation scheme named as Devaranya Yojana to bring together AYUSH and tourism to boost employment opportunities in tribal areas.
  • This scheme is launched for maximizing Ayurveda benefits in the scheduled tribal areas, increasing employment and livelihood opportunities in tribal-dominated areas.
  • Under this, medicinal and aromatic plants will be cultivated in the tribal-dominated areas, and industries.

Assam CM lays foundation stone of Bamboo Industrial Park in Dima Hasao

  • Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has laid the foundation stone of the first-ever Bamboo Industrial Park of the Northeast at Manderdisa in Dima Hasao, Assam
  • Bamboo Industrial project will be implemented by Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region at an estimated cost at Rs. 50 crores, over an area covering 75 hectares.
  • Once completed, it will contribute to the overall economic development of the State apart from developing the bamboo-based industries.

Parliament passes Juvenile Justice Amendment Bill 2021

  • Parliament has passed Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill 2021 to amend the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.
  • The amendments include:
    • Authorizing District Magistrate including Additional District Magistrate to issue adoption orders to ensure speedy disposal of cases and accountability.
    • Defining eligibility parameters for Child Welfare Committee members and categorizing undefined offences as serious offences

China’s Yang Qian & Yang Haoran win gold in 1st mixed team 10m air rifle

  • People's Republic of China team comprising Yang Qian and Yang Haoran have won gold in the first mixed team 10m air rifle final, after defeating USA’s Mary Tucker and Lucas Kozeniesky at Tokyo Olympics.
  • This is the second gold for Yang Qian, who won the first gold of Tokyo Olympics in the women's individual event
  • The teams were locked at 9-9 after 10 series, but the Chinese pulled away outscoring the Americans in three straight series and four of the last five.

ODF Plus Manuals under Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) Phase 2 released

  • Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat has released ODF Plus Manuals under Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) Phase 2 in New Delhi
  • Manuals pertain to key components of ODF Plus like Grey Water Management, Plastic Waste Management, Faecal Sludge Management and Biodegradable Waste Management
  • It has been developed by Dept of Drinking Water and Sanitation
  • Phase 2 of Swachh Bharat mission was launched last year, for sustainability and Solid and Liquid Waste Management

Govt proposes to set up NRF to strengthen the research ecosystem

  • Govt has proposes to set up a National Research Foundation (NRF) to strengthen the research ecosystem in India
  • NRF is being envisaged as an umbrella structure that will improve linkages between Research and Development, academia, and industry.
  • Total proposed outlay of NRF: Rs 50,000 crore for 5 years.
  • Aim: To seed, grow and facilitate research at academic institutions, particularly at universities and colleges, where research capacity is currently in a nascent stage.

Clarisse Agbegnenou of France wins gold medal in Women’s judo

  • Clarisse Agbegnenou (28 years) of France has won Gold medal in 63kg category in women’s judo in Toyko Olympics Games, defeating Slovenian Tina Trstenjak.
  • She is one of the greatest champions in the history of judo and defeated the reigning Olympic title holder
  • Italy's Maria Centracchio and Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard of Canada were awarded bronze medals.

Satpura Tiger Reserve wins NatWest Group Earth Heroes Award

  • Satpura Tiger Reserve of Madhya Pradesh has received ‘Natwest Group Earth Heroes Award’ in the Earth Guardian category for best management
  • About Satpura Tiger Reserve:
    • It is in Hoshangabad district and is spread over an area of 2130 square km.
    • It is part of Deccan Bio-Geographic Region
    • It is the oldest forest wealth of the country with 26 species of Himalayan region and 42 species of Nilgiri
    • It is also named as the Northern Ghats with 17% of India's tiger population

Polina Guryeva secures first-ever Olympics medal for Turkmenistan

  • Weightlifter Polina Guryeva (21 years) has secured first Olympic medal for Turkmenistan since independence from the Soviet Union.
  • She won silver medal for the Central Asian nation at the Tokyo Games.
  • She lifted a total 217 kilograms in the 59-kilogram category, edging Mikiko Andoh of Japan for second place.
  • Kuo Hsing-Chun of Taiwan has won gold by lifting 236kg in weightlifting.
  • Turkmenistan is a country in Central Asia with Ashgabat as capital.

India’s 14 Tiger Reserves get Global CA/TS recognition

  • Fourteen out of India’s 51 tiger reserves have received ‘Conservation Assured Tiger Standards (CATS)’ accreditation for meeting a set of standards for effective conservation of big cats
  • CATS: Globally accepted conservation tool that sets best practices and standards to manage tigers and assessments to benchmark progress. It is being implemented across 125 sites, including 94 in India.
  • Implementation partner for CATS assessment in India: GTF, WWF India, NTCA.

PM Modi launches SAFAL Assessment Framework for CBSE Students

  • PM Modi has launched ‘SAFAL initiative’ for Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) on the first anniversary of National Education Policy (NEP)
  • SAFAL stands for Structured Assessment For Analysing Learning.
  • SAFAL is a competency-based assessment programme for grades 3, 5 and 8 introduced by CBSE to assess the progress of foundational skills and basic learning outcomes
  • It will be conducted on pilot basis in CBSE schools during the academic year 2021-22.

Prakash Javadekar inaugurates India’s longest high-speed track

  • Former Union Minister Prakash Javadekar has inaugurated India’s longest high-speed track in Pithampur, Indore
  • It is spread over 1,000 acres and has been developed by National Automotive Test Tracks (Natrax).
  • It will be world’s fifth-longest high-speed track and is 11.3 kilometres long and 16 metres wide.
  • This four-lane high-speed testing track is oval in shape.
  • It can handle a maximum speed of 375 kmph on the curves and has been intended for neutral speeds of 250 kmph.

Karnataka becomes first State to provide 1% reservation for Transgender

  • Karnataka has become 1st Indian state to provide 1% horizontal reservation in public employment for transgender persons.
  • For this, govt has amended ‘Karnataka Civil Services (General Recruitment) Rules, 1977’.
  • This amendment is made to Rule 9 by inserting Sub Rule (1D) to provide for 1% of vacancies which needs to be filled in any service or post by the state government from among the transgender candidates in each category (SC, ST and OBC)

WHO releases report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic 2021

  • WHO has released report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic 2021 showing the progress made by countries in tobacco control since 2008
  • It presents data on electronic nicotine delivery systems, such as ‘e-cigarettes’ for the first time.
  • More than 5.3 billion people with 69% of the world’s population are covered by at least one MPOWER policy measure at the highest level.
  • WHO's Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.

RBI imposes Rs 5 crore penalty on Axis Bank for non-compliance of rules

  • RBI has imposed monetary penalty of Rs 5 crore on Axis Bank for non-compliance with certain provisions of the norms of central bank.
  • Penalty has been imposed for contravention of certain provisions of directions issued on ‘Strengthening Controls of Payment Ecosystem between Sponsor Banks and SCBs/UCBs as a Corporate Customer, Cyber Security Framework in Banks, RBI (Financial Services provided by Banks) Directions 2016 Financial Inclusion
  • AXIS Bank CEO: Amitabh Chaudhry

Alphabet launches new Robotics Software company ‘Intrinsic’

  • Google’s parent company, Alphabet has announced to launch a new company, known as Intrinsic, which will focus on building industrial robots software.
  • It will focus on releasing new robotic software and projects related to artificial intelligence that will develop delivery drones, self-driving cars.
  • The motive is to add flexibility to smaller businesses performing USB connection task
  • It will help the manufacturing industry to ensure that user’s demands are kept in mind.

Vaidehi Dongre from Michigan crowned Miss India USA 2021

  • Vaidehi Dongre from Michigan, has been crowned as the Miss India USA 2021.
  • Arshi Lalani from Georgia was declared the first runner-up of the beauty pageant while Mira Kasari from North Carolina was the second runner-up.
  • She also won the 'Miss Talented' title when she gave a flawless performance of Indian classical dance form Kathak.
  • Miss India USA was started by New York-based Indian Americans Dharmatma and Neelam Saran under Worldwide Pageants

Geo-imaging satellite “EOS-03” is scheduled for launch in 2021

  • ISRO is scheduled to launch geo-imaging satellite for earth observation ‘EOS-03’ in the third quarter of 2021.
  • The satellite will enable near real-time monitoring of natural disasters like floods and cyclones.
  • In addition to natural disasters, it will also enable monitoring of water bodies, crops, vegetation condition, forest cover changes.
  • It is capable of imaging the whole country four-five times daily.

JP Nadda launches National Health Volunteers Campaign

  • BJP National President JP Nadda has launched National Health Volunteers Campaign from BJP Headquarters in New Delhi.
  • Under this campaign, around 4 lakh volunteers will be trained who would work on grassroots level on COVID for around 2 lakh villages.
  • Training of the workers should not only be structural but the volunteer should also have a feeling of service
  • It will become the world’s largest health program.

Guido Bellido named as new Prime Minister of Peru

  • The newly sworn-in President of Peru, Pedro Castillo had appointed Guido Bellido, as the new prime minister of the country.
  • Mr Bellido is a member of the Marxist-Leninist Free Peru party, with which Castillo won the presidency.
  • Bellido’s swearing-in was held in the Southern Andean city of Ayacucho.
  • Peru is the world’s No. 2 copper producer.
  • Capital: Lima

PM Modi addressed IPS probationers at SVPNPA

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed and interacted virtually with the IPS probationers at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy (SVPNPA) in Hyderabad.
  • Mr Modi asked them to keep national interest in mind while taking any decision at the ground level and remember the Mantra of ‘Nation First-Always First'.
  • The Indian Police Service (IPS) is a civil service under the All India Services.
  • Minister Responsible: Amit Shah (Home Minister)

World Ranger Day: 31st July

  • World Ranger Day is celebrated every year on 31st July to commemorate the Rangers killed or injured while on duty and to celebrate the work that Rangers do to protect the world’s natural and cultural heritage. 
  • It was on this day in 1992 that International Ranger Federation (IRF) was founded.
  • A Ranger is a person tasked with preserving and protecting parklands and natural protected areas. A Ranger typically refers to a forest ranger or a park ranger.

Rajasthan Government launches ‘Mission Niryatak Bano’

  • The Rajasthan government's industries department and the Rajasthan State Industrial Development and Investment Corporation (RIICO) launched the 'Mission Niryatak Bano' campaign to promote aspiring exporters in the state.
  • The campaign will cover assistance of local traders from training, securing necessary documentation, registration in Rajasthan Export Promotion Council and even support in exports and trade operations.
  • Governor: Kalraj Mishra
  • Capital: Jaipur 

First Goods train on Haldibari-Chilahati route leaving for Bangladesh

  • The first goods train to carry stone chips to Bangladesh through the revived Haldibari -Chilahati rail link left from Damdim station of Alipurduar Division in North Frontier Railway.
  • This route will provide a shorter route for the transit of goods into Bangladesh from Assam, West Bengal, Nepal and Bhutan.
  • At present, five rail routes connect Bangladesh and India namely Petrapole-Benapole, Gede-Darshana, Singhabad-Rohanpur, Radhikapur-Birol and Haldibari-Chilahati.

Shri Hardeep Singh Puri launches DSF Bid Round-III

  • Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri has launched the Discovered Small Field (DSF) Bid Round-III.
  • Under the bid round, 75 discoveries across 32 Contract areas in 11 basins/locations are being offered.
  • Estimated Hydrocarbon in place of approximately 232 MMTOE of oil and oil equivalent gas are on offer.
  • In the earlier two rounds, 54 contracts were awarded to 27 companies including 12 new entrants.

Bhoot Jolokia chillies exported to London

  • Bhut Jolokia, one of the hottest chillies in the world, was exported from Nagaland to London for the first time.
  • India sent a 250kg consignment of Bhut Jolokia to London, UK.
  • It is a hybrid of Capsicum Chinese and Capsicum frutescens and is closely related to the Naga Morich.
  • Bhut Jolokia got its GI certification in 2008.

Tokyo Olympics: PV Sindhu loses against Tai Tzu-Ying

  • PV Sindhu has lost her semi-final clash against China's Taipei Tai Tzu-Ying at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics.
  • Tai defeated Sindhu 21-18 and 21-12 to enter the final.
  • Now, Sindhu will face China's He Bingjiao in the Bronze medal match tomorrow.

Former England seamer Mike Hendrick passes away

  • Former England and Derbyshire fast bowler Mike Hendrick (72-years) has passed away.
  • Mike Hendrick made his debut for England in 1973 against West Indies while his last match in international cricket came in 1981.

Graphic artist Anand Radhakrishnan wins prestigious Eisner award

  • Mumbai-based graphic artist Anand Radhakrishnan (32-years) has won the prestigious Will Eisner Award for his work on Ram V's authored novel- Blue In Green.
  • Anand shared the award with another UK-based colourist John Pearson.
  • He won the prestigious Eisner award for Best Painter/Multimedia Artist (interior art).
  • The graphics novel was published in October 2020 by Image Comics.

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Dhruv KumarDhruv KumarMember since Feb 2020
Cleared Defence Exams
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