Argutes

Bank Exam Current Affairs – 01 December 2021

1. Zero Defect Zero Effect Scheme

Union Minister for MSME in a written reply to Rajya Sabha today informed that approximately 23,948 MSMEs had registered with the intent to adopt the principle of the Zero Defect Zero Effect Scheme (ZED).

About the scheme

  1. The objective of the scheme for promotion of Zero Defect and Zero Effect (ZED) manufacturing amongst micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs)
  2. The MSMEs are provided financial assistance for the activities to be carried out for ZED certification i.e., Assessment / Rating, Additional rating for Defence angle, Gap Analysis, Handholding, Consultancy for improving the rating of MSMEs by Consultants and Re-Assessment / Re-Rating.
  3. Quality Council of India (QCI) has been appointed as the National Monitoring & Implementing Unit (NMIU) for the implementation of ZED.

2. Young Water Professional Program

The Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati, Australia India Water Centre, and Western Sydney University virtually launched the first edition of the India Young Water on 29th November 2021.

India and Australia highlighted that water is a key priority area of collaboration between both countries and they are working actively on this front.

Significance of the launch

  1. The launch of the India Young Water Professional Program marks a significant milestone in the Australia-India collaboration in the field of water conservation.
  2. This program will be implemented by the Australia India Water Centre (a consortium of Australian and Indian universities).
  3. This initiative aims to provide a structured platform for capacity building with strategic and long-term investment to support the water management reforms in India.
  4. The objectives are to equip water professionals with the necessary skills, knowledge, behaviors, and networks that will better enable them to contribute to the development and management of water resources in India

3. Groundwater Level In India

About 33% of wells registered a decline in groundwater levels in the range of 0 to 2 meters, the Ministry of Jal Shakti said, noting that a decline of more than four meters has also been observed in a few pockets of cities like Delhi, Chennai, Allahabad, Kanpur, and Lucknow.

Responding to a question in Rajya Sabha, the Ministry noted that the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) is periodically monitoring the groundwater levels throughout the country, including metro cities, on a regional scale, through a network of monitoring wells.

Insights

  1. In order to assess the decline in water level on a long-term basis, the water level data collected by CGWB during November 2020 has been compared with the decadal average (2010-2019).
  2. The analysis of water level data indicated that about 33% of the wells monitored have registered declines in groundwater levels in the range of 0–2 meters.
  3. The decline of more than 4 meters has also been observed in a few pockets of Delhi, Chennai, Indore, Coimbatore, Madurai, Vijayawada, Dehradun, Jaipur, Allahabad, Ghaziabad, Kanpur, and Lucknow

4. Multidimensional Poverty Index

Three districts in Uttar Pradesh have nearly 70 percent and above population who are multidimensionally poor, and Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Madhya Pradesh combined have the top 10 districts with the highest poverty ratio among states, according to the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) report prepared by the NITI Aayog.

The MPI uses the globally accepted methodology developed by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP).

Highlights of the Report

  1. Kerala is a standout state with the lowest percentage of the population being multidimensionally poor at 0.71%, with nine out of its 14 districts having a poverty ratio of less than 1%.
  2. Kottayam is an outlier district with not even a single poor person.
  3. This is based on data analyzed from the first-ever MPI report, which puts the all-India poverty ratio at 25.01%.
  4. The MPI seeks to measure poverty across its multiple dimensions and in effect complements existing poverty statistics based on per capita consumption expenditure.
  5. It has three equally weighted dimensions — health, education, and standard of living — which in turn are represented by 12 indicators such as nutrition, school attendance, years of schooling, drinking water, sanitation, housing, bank accounts, among others.
  6. Among states, Bihar has the highest proportion of people  at 51.91% of its population  who are multidimensionally poor.
  7. Eleven Bihar districts have a poverty ratio above 60%, with the highest rate of 64.75% in Kishanganj, followed by Araria (64.65%), Madhepura (64.43%), Purba Champaran (64.13), and Supaul (64.10%).
  8. The lowest ratio was in Patna at 29.20%, followed by Bhojpur (40.50%), Siwan (40.55%), Rohtas (40.74%), and Munger (40.99%).
  9. Three districts in Uttar Pradesh have a poverty ratio of nearly 70% and more: Shrawasti (74.38%), Bahraich (71.88%), and Balrampur (69.45%). Lucknow has the lowest poverty ratio in the state at 12.16%, followed by Kanpur Nagar (14.34%), Gautam Budh Nagar (17.08%), and Ghaziabad (17.47%).
  10. Nine out of Kerala’s 14 districts had a poverty ratio of less than 1%, with Kottayam’s ratio at zero percent, followed by Ernakulam (0.10%). The highest ratio in the state is in Wayanad district at 3.48 percent. The overall poverty ratio in Kerala is 0.71%.
  11. Union Territory of Puducherry has among the lowest multidimensional poverty in each of its four districts: Yanam at 5.18%, Karaikal at 3.13%, Puducherry at 1.30%, and Mahe at 0.08%. The overall poverty ratio in UT is 1.72%.

Click here to know about Global Multidimensional Poverty Index

5. First privately developed cryogenic rocket engine

Spacetech start-up Skyroot Aerospace announced last week that it has successfully tested Dhawan-1, India’s first privately developed fully cryogenic rocket engine.

Insights

  1. Named in honor of Indian rocket scientist Satish Dhawan
  2. The rocket successfully demonstrates the technology that will power the upper stages of its upcoming Vikram-2 orbital launch vehicle, one of three launch vehicles Skyroot has designed specifically for the small satellite market.
  3. The largest rocket, Vikram-3 can transport 580 kilograms to SSPO, or 720 kilograms to LEO.
  4. This is a completely ‘Made-in-India’ cryogenic engine developed using 3D printing with a superalloy, reducing manufacturing time by more than 95 percent.

6. Central Bank Digital Currency

The ministry of finance in a written reply to a question regarding the Central Bank Digital Currency or the CBDC has said that it has received a proposal from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in October 2021 for an amendment to the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 to enhance the scope of the definition of ‘bank note’ to include currency in digital form.

Insights

  1. Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) is introduced by a Central Bank.
  2. RBI has been examining use cases and working out a phased implementation strategy for the introduction of CBDC with little or no disruption.
  3. The introduction of CBDC has the potential to provide significant benefits, such as reduced dependency on cash, higher seigniorage due to lower transaction costs, reduced settlement risk.
  4. There are also associated risks that need to be carefully evaluated against the potential benefits
  5. Unregulated cryptocurrencies can destabilize the macro-economy and create big speculative bubbles. To that extent, the RBI is right.

Click here to know more

7. Credit Card from PVC

  1. HSBC India has launched India’s 1st credit card made from recycled PVC (Polyvinyl chloride) plastic.
  2. The cards have been introduced in partnership with global cards manufacturer IDEMIA to gradually eliminate single-use PVC plastic.
  3. The cards are made from 85 per cent recycled plastic and each card will save 3.18gm of plastic waste in addition to helping lower overall carbon emission.
  4. The card was launched as a part of a new program launched by HSBC Group to introduce sustainable cards across all its global locations to support its global commitments to sustainability and a net-zero in its operations by 2030.

8. ESAF Go green loans

  1. The Thrissur-based ESAF Small Finance Bank Limited has announced the latest “ESAF Go Green” range of electric vehicle loan schemes.
  2. The launch coincides with COP26.
  3. “ESAF Go green” loans validate ESAF Small Finance Bank’s social business strategy seeking a triple bottom line impact; people; planet; and prosperity.

9. Most purposeful 2021

  1. E-commerce giant Amazon, Asian Paints, and Tata Tea have been named as the “most purposeful” brands in India 2021 in tech, non-FMCG, and FMCG categories, the latest BrandZ India report by insights and consulting firm Kantar shows.
  2. In the technology category, Amazon is followed by food delivery platform Zomato, Google-backed YouTube, food delivery platform Swiggy, and Walmart-backed Flipkart.
  3. In the FMCG category, Tata Tea is followed by Surf Excel, Taj Mahal, Maggi, Parachute, Britannia. In the non-FMCG category, Asian Paints is followed by Jio, Samsung, MRF, Tata Housing, and Airtel.
  4. The Kantar BrandZ database for Most Purposeful Brands of India for 2020-21 covers 418 brand cases.

10. Day of Remembrance for All Victims of Chemical Warfare 2021

  1. Day of Remembrance for all Victims of Chemical Warfare is an annual event held on November 30, every year since 2005.
  2. The day marks a tribute to the victims of chemical warfare, as well as to reaffirm the commitment of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to the elimination of the threat of chemical weapons, thereby promoting the goals of peace.

11. Vivek Johri

  1. The government has appointed senior bureaucrat Vivek Johri as the Chairman of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC).
  2. Johri, a 1985-batch Indian Revenue Service (Customs and Indirect Taxes) officer, is currently working as a member of the board.
  3. His appointment was approved by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet.

12. Saurav Ghosal

  1. Saurav Ghosal beats top seed Miguel Rodriguez to become 1st Indian to win Malaysian Open squash championships
  2. Indian squash player Saurav Ghosal won his first PSA title in three years when he triumphed at the Malaysian Open with a straight-set win over top seed Miguel Rodriguez in Kuala Lumpur.
  3. Second seed and ranked 15th in the world, Ghosal defeated Rodriguez 11-7 11-8 13-11 in 55 minutes to win his 10th PSA title.

13. Aharbal festival

  1. The first-ever Aharbal festival was held in the Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir with an aim to promote tourism in Kashmir, especially at Aharbal waterfall as a tourist destination.
  2. Aharbal Waterfall, also called “The Niagara of Kashmir”, because of the sheer volume of river that falls down.
  3. Aharbal Waterfall is formed when the Veshaw River.

14. Ramkumar Ramanathan

  1. Indian tennis player Ramkumar Ramanathan won his maiden singles title at the ATP Challenger tournament in Manama, Bahrain.
  2. Ramkumar, seeded sixth and ranked 222 in the world.
  3. He defeated Evgeny Karlovskiy of the Russian Tennis Federation in the final by 6-1, 6-4 in 68 minutes.
  4. The unseeded Russian, Evgeny Karlovskiy, ranked 302 in the world.