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MoSJE Dr. Virendra Kumar launches SEED For Welfare of DNTs, NTs, SNTs
i.On February 16, 2022, Union Minister Dr. Virendra Kumar, Ministry for Social Justice and Empowerment (MoSJE) launched the Scheme for Economic Empowerment of DNT/NT/SNTs (SEED) from Dr. Ambedkar International Centre, New Delhi, Delhi.
ii.It is an umbrella scheme for the empowerment and welfare of the most deprived and economically weaker Indian communities’ viz. De-notified Tribes (DNTs), Nomadic Tribes (NTs) and Semi Nomadic Tribes (SNTs). It has been formulated with four components that affect their livelihood.
iii.Its outlay is ~Rs 200 crore to be spent over five years beginning 2021-22 to 2025-26.
iv.It will be implemented by the Development and Welfare Board for DNTs, SNTs &NTs (DWBDNCs) along with the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD), National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM) and National Health Authority (NHA).
About Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment(MoSJE):
Union Minister– Dr Virendra Kumar (Constituency- Tikamgarh, Madhya Pradesh)
Ministers of State (MoS)– A. Narayanaswamy (Constituency- Chitradurga, Karnataka) and Pratima Bhoumik (Constituency- Tripura West, Tripura), Ramdas Athawale(Rajya Sabha – Maharashtra)
>> Read Full News
Ministry of Education Approved “NILP” a new scheme of Adult Education
The Ministry of Education (MoE) approved a new scheme “New India Literacy Programme (NILP) which is also known as Nav Bharat Literacy Program” for upcoming 5 years (FY 2022-27) to cover all the aspects of adult education to align with National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
- The total estimation of NILP is Rs.1037.90 crore, in which the Central government and State government share Rs 700 crore and Rs 337.90 crore respectively.
- MoE replaced the term “Adult Education” with “Education for All”
i.Critical life skills
ii.Vocational skills development
Implementation of the Scheme:
i.The scheme is implemented to registered volunteers and accessed through online mode.
ii.Materials and resources to be provided through digital mode.
iii.The physical and financial progress of States/UT’s viewed through the Unified District Information System for Education (UDISE) portal.
About Ministry of Education (MoE):
Cabinet Minister – Dharmedra Pradhan (Constituency – Deogarh, Odisha)
Minister of State – Subhas Sarkar (Constituency – Bankura, West Bengal) ,Annpurna Devi, Rajkumar Ranjan Singh.
>> Read Full News
8th Annual Meeting of Indo-German Working Group on Quality Infrastructure held virtually; Work Plan 2022 signed
i.On February 16, 2022, the 8th Annual Meeting of the Indo-German Working Group on Quality Infrastructure held virtually which was co-led by Ministry for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution (MoCAF&PD), India; and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Klimaschutz – (BMWK)).
ii.The meeting saw the signing of a Work Plan 2022 by both sides to strengthen Quality Infrastructure (QI), reduce technical barriers to trade, enhance product safety and strengthen consumer protection.
iii.The Outcome of the Global Quality Infrastructure Index (GQII) study conducted by the German side was also shared in the meeting. India scored 95.6 out of 100 and is ranked at 10th place in the world for overall QI environment.
President– Frank-Walter Steinmeier
>> Read Full News
PhonePe and NITI Aayog Partners to Launch Fintech Open Hackathon
On 17th February 2022 PhonePe partnered with National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog, to host the first-ever open-to-all hackathon that aims to showcase path-breaking solutions for the fintech ecosystem.
- The Hackathon will provide an opportunity for innovators, digital creators and developers from all over India to think, ideate and code.
i.Participating teams can have 1 to 5 participants and can use data sources like PhonePe Pulse, the Open Government Data Platform and Reserve Bank of India (RBI) reports on payments to build on their submission.
- In addition, they can access any other open data platforms along with the Setu AA Sandbox or the Setu Payments Sandbox to develop their hacks.
ii.By the end of the event, participants will be required to present a working prototype of their hack.
The Prize money:
i.The top 5 hacks will be awarded a prize money. Further, Judges may also decide to award fewer or more prizes depending on the hacks submitted.
- 1st prize : INR 1,50,000 for the team
- 2nd prize : INR 1,00,000 for the team
- 3rd prize : INR 75,000 for the team
ii.Participants at the hackathon need to use any open-data APIs like PhonePe Pulse along with frameworks such as Account Aggregator as a foundation to power the following use cases:
- Alternate risk models for Lending, Insurance or Investments with focus on financial Inclusion.
- Innovative Products that use the power data signals for various demographics and Geos for broader adoption of financial services.
- Improved Visualisation and Derived intelligence based on the Digital payments data
The final app that participants come up with must incorporate one of the above.
Note – The NITI Aayog fintech month commenced on 7th February 2022 that had witnessed some thought-provoking keynotes, in-depth fireside chats, and panel discussions.
About National Institute for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog:
Establishment – 2015
CEO- Amitabh Kant
Chairperson – Prime Minister (PM) of India (Currently, PM, Narendra Modi)
Headquarters – New Delhi, Delhi
MoA&FW estimates Foodgrains production of over 316.06 MT for 2021-22
In the Second Advance Estimates of production of major crops for the year 2021-22 released by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoA&FW), India’s estimated foodgrains production is 316.06 million tonnes.
- It is higher by 5.32 million tonnes than the production of foodgrains during 2020-21.
i.The production during 2021-22 is also higher by 25.35 million tonnes than the previous five years (2016-17 to 2020-21) average production of foodgrains.
The estimates show the foodgrains output in 2021-22 is expected to be 6 million tonnes (MT) which is nearly 2% more than the overall production of 310 MT in 2020-21.
Product wise projections:
Rice- the total production of Rice during 2021-22 is estimated at record 127.93 million tonnes. It is higher by 11.49 million tonnes than the last five years (2016-17 to 2020-21) average production of 116.44 million tonnes.
Wheat- the total production of Wheat during 2021-22 is estimated at record 111.32 million tonnes. It is higher by 7.44 million tonnes than the average wheat production of 103.88 million tonnes.
Nutri / Coarse Cereals– the production of Nutri / Coarse Cereals estimated at 49.86 million tonnes, which is higher by 3.28 million tonnes than the average production.
Pulses- Total Pulses production during 2021-22 is estimated at 26.96 million tonnes which is higher by 3.14 million tonnes than the last five years’ average production of 23.82 million tonnes.
Oilseeds- Total Oilseeds production in the country during 2021-22 is estimated at record 37.15 million tonnes which is higher by 1.20 million tonnes than the production of 35.95 million tonnes during 2020-21 and it is also higher by 4.46 million tonnes than the average oilseeds production.
- Higher down area of oilseeds is registered from most oilseeds producing States like Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat etc.
Sugarcane- Total production of Sugarcane in the country during 2021-22 is estimated at 414.04 million tonnes which is higher by 40.59million tonnes than the average sugarcane production of 373.46 million tonnes.
Cotton- Production of Cotton is estimated at 34.06 million bales (each of 170 kg) is higher by 1.12 million bales than the average cotton production of 32.95 million bales.
Jute- Production of Jute & Mesta is estimated at 9.57 million bales (each of 180 kg).
About Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoA&FW):
Union Minister- Narendra Singh Tomar (Constituency- Morena, Madhya Pradesh)
Minister of State- Shobha Karandlaje (Udupi Chikmagalur, Karnataka) Kailash Choudhary (Barmer, Rajasthan)
UNDP launches new Digital Strategy 2022-2025 towards Achieving SDGs
On February 15, 2022, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched new Digital Strategy 2022-2025 to support countries and communities for using digital technologies to reduce inequality, support inclusivity, tackle climate change, and open-up economic opportunities. This strategy will accelerate the work towards achieving the sustainable development goals (SDGs).
i.Digitalization will help UNDP to meet its ambitious goals, primarily, supporting 100 million people to escape poverty, and assisting 500 million people to gain access to clean energy.
- It will also guide the UNDP to tackle the emerging challenges associated with our new digital world.
ii.As per the UN, artificial intelligence (AI) and digital technology could bring a 10-20% reduction in global carbon dioxide emissions by 2030.
iii.Notably, 2.9 billion people, mostly in developing countries, and mostly women, remain without access to the Internet.
iv.UNDP assisted 82 countries to adopt over 580 digital solutions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
v.UNDP will assist countries in using digital technology with a three-pronged approach:
- First, UNDP will amplify development outcomes by embedding digital into its work.
- Second, it will support societies in their efforts to create more inclusive and resilient digital ecosystems.
- And third, UNDP will continue to transform and lead by example to meet current and future technological needs. That means prompting #FutureSmartUNDP personnel.
About United Nations Development Programme(UNDP):
Administrator– Achim Steiner
Headquarters– New York, United States
BANKING & FINANCE
SIDBI Partners with Bihar government to Promote MSME SectorThe Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) has signed 2 memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Industries Department of Government of Bihar, and the Bihar Industrial Area Development Authority (BIADA) to promote the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector.
- The first MoU was exchanged by Manish Sinha, General Manager, SIDBI and Pankaj Dixit, IAS Director (Technical Development), GoB. Second MoU was exchanged by Sinha and Bhogendra Lal, ED (H.Q.), BIADA.
- Bihar is the 14th state of India with which SIDBI has partnered to strengthen MSME. SIDBI will place an expert agency with the state industries department of Bihar.
About the MoU:
i.Under the 1st MoU Bihar’s Industry Department, will work with Project Management Units (PMUs) of SIDBI.
ii.According to the 2nd MoU, SIDBI will work in close coordination with BIADA to benefit MSMEs who want to set up any industrial unit on the plot allotted by BIADA to promote industrialisation in Bihar.
Governor – Phagu Chauhan
Airport – Gaya International Airport, Lok Nayak Jayaprakash Airport, Darbhanga Airport
Zoological park – Sanjay Gandhi Biological Park
Canara HSBC OBC Life Insurance Launches Flexi EdgeCanara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC) Life Insurance has launched its new insurance plan, ‘Flexi Edge’, a non-linked participating individual savings life insurance plan that enables the customers with the ability to prioritise their long-term savings.
About Flexi Edge:
i.Flexi Edge addresses the growing needs of customers starting from savings to income and unplanned or recurring expenses; along with providing life cover to the policy holder in the unfortunate event of the death.
- Additionally, the Flexi Edge plan will also provide Premium Protection Benefit, Deferred Survival Benefit Facility
ii.The plan also offers the customers the flexibility to choose from 3 plan options depending on their individualistic requirements,
Flexi Savings – This is a basic Savings Structure that offers benefits equal to 100 percent of sum assured, loyalty additions and accrued bonuses at end of the policy term.
- Once the insurance plan is coupled with Premium Protection Benefit, it becomes an ideal investment to take care of a child’s education & other needs even in absence of parents.
Flexi Income – This helps in taking care of income needs and increasing expenses of the policy holder and offers a benefit equal to 50 percent of the sum assured at the end of premium payment term in addition to guaranteed income & cash bonus every year post completion of premium payment term till end of policy term.
- The policyholder will further receive sum benefits equal to 100 percent of Sum Assured and accrued bonuses at end of the policy term.
Flexi Care – The plan offers Cash Bonus every year from end of the 2nd policy year till end of the policy term (100-age at entry) along with sum benefits equal to accrued guaranteed additions at Milestone Age.
- Additionally, the policy holder will receive a sum benefit equal to 100 percent of Sum Assured and bonuses at the end of the Policy Term.
About Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance:
Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance Company Limited is a joint venture between Canara Bank (51%), HSBC Insurance (Asia Pacific) Holdings Limited (26%) and Punjab National Bank (23%).
Establishment – 2008
Headquarters – Gurugram, Haryana
Managing Director (MD) and CEO – Anuj Mathur
IndusInd Bank empaneled with e-NAM Portal to facilitate Digital Transactions
The Small Farmers Agri- Business Consortium (SFAC) has empanelled Induslnd Bank with the National Agriculture Market (e-NAM) portal to facilitate digital collection and settlement services, for facilitating transactions between farmers and traders across India.
i.Induslnd Bank will be directly integrated with e-NAM platform to provide safe and hassle free payments, clearing and settlement services to the farmers and traders.
ii.It will offer various transaction services through digital modes including multi-net banking, debit card, NEFT (National Electronic Funds Transfer), RTGS (Real-time gross settlement), IMPS (Immediate Payment Service) and UPI (Unified Payments Interface) to the buyer and seller of the agriculture produce.
iii.As of January 2022, there are over 1.7 crore farmers, and 1.8 lakh traders registered on e-NAM. The total value of agri-produce traded on eNAM is about ₹1.72 lakh crore.
About IndusInd Bank:
Headquarters- Pune, Maharashtra
MD & CEO- Sumant Kathpalia
Founded- April 1994
About Small Farmers Agri- Business Consortium (SFAC):
SFAC is an autonomous society promoted by the Department of Agriculture, cooperation and farmer welfare of Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoA&FW). It was registered under Societies Registration Act of 1860.
Established- 8th January, 1994
Managing Director- Neelkamal Darbari
About National Agriculture Market (eNAM):
It is an online trading platform for agricultural commodities. The market facilitates farmers, traders and buyers with online trading in commodities.
Under- Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoA&FW)
Fisdom Partners with BoM to Offer Wealth Management ServicesFisdom, a wealth-tech company partnered with Bank of Maharashtra (BoM), to offer wealth management products and services to over 29 million customers of the bank.
- Aim – To distribute the wealth products and services including the mobile banking app and internet banking.
i.The wealth management offerings will enable customers of BoM to invest into mutual funds (MF) through Maha Mobile, BoM’s Mobile Banking App and Internet Banking facility.
ii.Customers can view all the details related to funds and also can track the performances of mutual funds real-time.
About Bank of Maharashtra:
Establishment – 16 September 1935
Headquarters – Pune,Maharashtra
Managing Director (MD) & CEO – A S Rajeev
Tagline – Ek Parivaar, Ek Bank (One Family One Bank)
Goldhub:RBI Emerges 2nd Largest Buyer of Gold in 2021;Central Bank of Thailand Tops
According to Goldhub, an official website of the World Gold Council that maintains all the data regarding precious metal, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has emerged as the 2nd largest buyer of Gold among the world’s Central Banks in 2021.RBI bought 77.5 metric tonnes in 2021.
- As per Goldhub, India’s official gold reserves is the 9th largest in the world.
i.At the end of December 2021, RBI gold reserves stood at 754.1 tonnes, which amounts to 6.22 per cent of India’s forex reserves. As per RBI data, India’s total reserves at the end of December 31, 2021 stood at $633.61 billion, including gold reserves worth $39.405 billion.
ii.Among the world banks, the Central Bank of Thailand is the largest buyer in 2021 that bought 90 metric tonnes of gold, Hungary bought 63 tonnes, tripling its gold reserves.
Note- Goldhub is the official website of World Gold Council that maintains all the data regarding precious metal(Gold).
About World Gold Council:
Headquarters – London, United Kingdom
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) – David Tait
BSE inks pact with 4 regional associations to promote EGRs
BSE (formerly Bombay Stock Exchange) announced its collaboration with four regional associations from Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu after receiving in-principle approval from SEBI to launch the Electronic Gold Receipts (EGR) segment to promote such products.
The agreement aimed to provide impetus for the growth and development of the commodities segment with the proposed EGR market.
i.The BSE signed pacts with four associations, which includes Thirunelveli Gold Silver Diamond Jewellery Traders Association, Nanded Sarafa Association, Saraf Suvarnkar Sangthna Pusad, and Ghadchiroli Zila Sarafa Association.
- Together these associations represent over 1,000 members involved in jewelry and bullion trade.
ii.Under the agreement, the stakeholders of these associations will be able to get the knowledge and expertise to support innovations and development in spot trading for gold.
- The agreement will also help over 140 members mitigate price risks of gold and procure highest quality of the yellow metal and enhance transparency in pricing.
About BSE (formerly Bombay Stock Exchange):
Chairman – Vikramajit Sen
Founded – 1875
Headquarters- Mumbai, Maharashtra
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
IBA’s 17th Annual Banking Technology Awards 2021: South Indian Bank won 6 awards Including Best Technology Bank of the Year
The South Indian Bank (SIB), headquartered in Thrissur, Kerala, has won 6 awards at the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA)’s 17th Annual Banking Technology Awards 2021. The 6 awards for South Indian banks include the ‘Best Technology Bank of the Year 2021’ under the “small bank” segment.
- The IBA 17th Annual Banking Technology Conference and Awards 2021 organised by the IBA was virtually held on 14th February 2022.
- The IBA Awards 2021 celebrate “Next-Gen Banking” and recognise the technologies and practices in the banking industry that have demonstrated a high degree of innovation over 2021.
About Indian Banks’ Association(IBA):
Chief Executive– Sunil Mehta
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Formed on 26th September 1946
>> Read Full News
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATIONS
G Ashok Kumar Appointed as India’s 1st National Maritime Security Coordinator
The government of India has appointed Vice Admiral (retd) G Ashok Kumar, the former Navy vice chief, as India’s first National Maritime Security Coordinator (NMSC) in the National Security Council Secretariat. The proposal for the creation of this post was cleared by the Cabinet Committee on Security in 2021.
- This is a part of India’s efforts to enhance maritime security following the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack (2008).
The NMSC is mandated to ensure cohesion among the key stakeholders with the objective of strengthening India’s maritime security.
Works of NMSC:
i.The NMSC will work in coordination with the National Security Council Secretariat and report to National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Kumar Doval
ii.The NMSC will coordinate among the Indian Navy, the Coast Guard, security agencies involved in coastal and maritime security and 13 coastal states and Union Territories(UTs).
Note: The coastline of India stretches around 7500 kilometres(km) covering 9 states, 2 UTs and 2 island territories.
About G Ashok Kumar:
i.Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar, a Flag Officer in the Indian Navy, retired from the service in July 2021.
ii.He served as the 35th Vice Chief of the Naval Staff from 2019 to 2021.
About National Security Council(NSC):
NSC is an executive government agency tasked with advising the Prime Minister’s Office(PMO) on matters of national security and strategic interest.
National Security Advisor– Ajit Kumar Doval
Secretariat– New Delhi, Delhi
Kannada litterateur Dr Chennaveera Kanavi passes awayRenowned Kannada litterateur Dr Chennaveera Kanavi passed away at the age of 93 years due to age related ailments in Dharwad, Karnataka.
i.Nadoja Chennaveera Kanavi was born on June 29, 1928 at Hombal village in Gadag district of Karnataka. He was popularly known as “Samanvayada Kavi” and “Soujanyada Kavi”.
ii.He had written more than 15 books, which were a compilation of poems, collection of essays and various other books.
Some of his notable poetries:
- Shishu Kanda Kanasu
Awards- Sahitya Akademi award for his book ‘Jeevadhwani’.
He also received the Rajyotsava Award, Pampa Award, Sahitya Bangara Award, Sahitya Kala Kaustubha Award etc.
Indian Composer & Singer Bappi Lahiri Passed Away
Indian music composer and singer, Bappi Lahiri (nickname: Bappi Daa, Disco King of India), has passed away in Mumbai, Maharashtra. He was born as Alokesh Lahiri on 27th November 1952 in Jalpaiguri, West Bengal.
- He is well known for popularizing the use of synthesised disco music in Indian cinema.
- Some of his well-known works include Disco Dancer, Aap Ki Khatir, Sharaabi.
- He has worked in films in Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Kannada, Telugu and Gujarati languages.
Delhi Police Became India’s 1st Security Force to Launch ‘Smart Card Arms License’
On 16th February 2022, on the occasion of 75th Anniversary of Delhi Police, Amit Shah, Union Minister of Home Affairs, officially launched the Delhi Police’s “Smart Card Arms License” and “Shastra Mobile Application”.
- Delhi Police introduced ‘Smart Card Arms License’ to provide techno-friendly digital services to the citizens of Delhi. Delhi Police has become India’s first security force to introduce the ‘Smart Card Arms License’, replacing the arms license booklet.
- The smart card and the Shastra app were designed and developed in coordination with the National e-Governance Division (NeGD), Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology(MeitY).
Smart Card Arms License:
i.The smart card has inherent security features which include an 18-digit unique identification number.
ii.The Smart Card Arms License will be issued to all the licensees during delivery of various services at Licensing Unit.
iii.Smart Card Arms License will be integrated with the ‘e-Beat book’ through the ‘Shastra mobile app’ for effective policing.
Shastra Mobile App:
i.The Shastra Mobile App installed in the e-beat book of the Beat officers will assist in identifying the credentials of Arms License holders during random checking.
ii.The Shastra mobile app has a pan India database of arms licence holders.
iii.It will facilitate dynamic & Real-Time Checking of the Licenses at Fixed & Mobile Pickets, Airports, Border Check posts, and other public places.
e-arms License Module:
i.Under the ‘Digital India Initiative’, the Delhi Police has initiated several citizen-friendly digital services.
ii.Delhi Police launched the e-arms license module in January 2019 to facilitate services related to arms licenses. Delhi police became the first police organisation in India to introduce the e-arms license module.
About Delhi Police:
i.Delhi Police comes under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).
ii.Delhi Police originally founded as a security force under British rule in 1861 and later it was reorganised and got its first Inspector General of Police (IGP), DW Mehra on 16th February 1948.
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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)
|S.no||Current Affairs 18 February 2022|
|1||Union Minister Dr. Virendra Kumar launches a Scheme for Economic Empowerment of DNTs|
|2||Ministry of Education Approved “NILP” a new scheme of Adult Education|
|3||8th Annual Meeting of Indo-German Working Group on Quality Infrastructure held virtually; Work Plan 2022 signed|
|4||PhonePe and NITI Aayog Partners to Launch Fintech Open Hackathon|
|5||MoA&FW estimates Foodgrains production of over 316.06 MT for 2021-22|
|6||UNDP launches new Digital Strategy 2022-2025 towards Achieving SDGs|
|7||SIDBI Partners with Bihar government to Promote MSME Sector|
|8||Canara HSBC OBC Life Insurance Launches Flexi Edge|
|9||IndusInd Bank empaneled with e-NAM Portal to facilitate Digital Transactions|
|10||Fisdom Partners with BoM to Offer Wealth Management Services|
|11||RBI Emerges 2nd Largest Buyer of Gold in 2021|
|12||BSE inks pact with 4 regional associations to promote EGRs|
|13||IBA’s 17th Annual Banking Technology Awards 2021: South Indian Bank won 6 awards Including Best Technology Bank of the Year|
|14||G Ashok Kumar Appointed as India’s 1st National Maritime Security Coordinator|
|15||Kannada litterateur Dr Chennaveera Kanavi passes away|
|16||Indian Composer & Singer Bappi Lahiri Passed Away|
|17||Delhi Police’s 75th Foundation day; Delhi police Became India’s 1st Security Force to Introduced ‘Smart Card Arms License’|