Daily Current Affairs and GK | 19 January 2021

By PendulumEdu | Last Modified: 20 Jan 2021 15:54 PM IST

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Topic: Indian Polity

1. Iron-ore Policy 2021 released by Ministry of Railways.

  • Iron-ore Policy 2021 has been released by the Ministry of Railways and it will become effective from 10 February 2021.
  • Iron-ore Policy 2021 will govern the allocation of rakes and transportation of iron ore. Centre for Railway Information System will update the provisions of Iron-ore Policy 2021 in rake allotment system module.
  • New policy removes the provision for scrutiny of documentation by Railways. It also removes the regulatory role of Executive Director Rake Movement of Railway Board (EDRM) office, Kolkata.
  • ERDM office will carry out analysis of iron-ore traffic to improve freight loading. Iron-ore Policy 2021 gives priority to the movement of iron-ore traffic for domestic manufacturing activity.
  • Priority of movement of Iron Ore will be categorized on the basis of availability of Railway infrastructure.
  • Among the various streams Railways traffic, Iron ore is the second most important. Iron ore and steel accounted for 17% of the total 1,210 million tonne freight loading in 2019-20.
  • Centre for Railway Information System is an organization founded in 1986. It comes under Ministry of Railways. It deals with the information systems of Indian railways.

Topic: Geography

2. A powerful earthquake has hit Indonesia’s West Sulawesi Island.

  • A powerful earthquake has hit Indonesia’s West Sulawesi Island.
  • Indonesia is located on Pacific Ring of Fire, which is home to about 90% of earthquakes.
  • Earthquake is a natural phenomenon defined as shaking of the earth caused by the release of energy from the interior of earth.
  • The magnitude of an earthquake is measured on the Richter scale. Its intensity is measured on the Mercalli scale.  
  • Indonesia:
    • It is a country located in Southeast Asia and Oceania between the Indian and Pacific oceans.
    • It has more than seventeen thousand islands, including Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Sulawesi and New Guinea. Its capital is Jakarta.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

3. TRIFED and IFFDC signed a MoU for tribal livelihood generation.

  • The Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India (TRIFED) and Indian Farm Forestry Development Co-operative Ltd (IFFDC) signed an MoU to work together for tribal livelihood generation.
  • Both organizations have entered into an agreement to train tribal people in the field of entrepreneurship skills and business development. They will also identify and implement corporate social responsibility initiatives for the development of tribal people.
  • Under the MoU, IFFDC will also help promote tribal FPOs and provide training to TRIFED linked organizations or members.
  • The main objective of this MoU is to transform the livelihoods of tribal people across the country.

Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India (TRIFED)

Indian Farm Forestry Development Cooperative Limited (IFFDC)

  • It was established in 1987.
  • It works under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs.
  • Its objective is the socio-economic development of tribal people in the country by way of marketing development of tribal products.


  • It was formed in 1993.
  • It is a cooperative society under the Ministry of Agriculture.
  • It is responsible for Farm Forestry and Climate Change activities such as Livelihoods, CSR initiatives, Seed Production, etc.

Topic: Defence

4. CRPF gets DRDO-developed Motor Bike Ambulance ‘Rakshita’.

  • Twenty-one DRDO-developed Motor Bike Ambulance ‘Rakshita’ were incorporated into Central Reserve Police Force for providing emergency healthcare service in remote areas.
  • It has been developed by the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS), a scientific research body under the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
  • It will help Central Reserve Police Force in the evacuation of injured patients from the Left Wing Extremism-affected and insurgency-hit areas.
  • It can also provide life-saving aid in congested streets and remote locations. It is equipped with a customized reclining Casualty Evacuation Seat, air splint, medical and oxygen kit, etc.

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)

Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF)

  • It works under the Ministry of Defence.
  • It was established in 1958
  • Chairman: G. Sateesh Reddy
  • Headquarters: New Delhi
  • It is involved in developing critical defense technologies and products to meet the requirements of the Indian Armed Forces.


  • It functions under the authority of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India.
  • It was established on 27 July 1939.
  • It is headquartered in New Delhi.
  • Its motto is ‘Service and Loyalty’.
  • The Central Reserve Police Force is the largest Central Armed Police Force in India.


life-saving aid

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Miscellaneous

5. PM Modi elected as next Chairman of Shree Somnath Trust.

  • Prime Minister has been elected as the next Chairman of Shree Somnath Trust. He was elected at the virtual meeting of trustees of Shree Somnath Trust.
  • The trust is responsible for the management of the Somnath Temple in Gujarat. It is also responsible for the infrastructure development, accommodation arrangements for tourists, and connectivity for the temple.
  • Somnath Temple:
    • It is located in Saurashtra on the western coast of Gujarat.
    • It is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas of India.
    • The present temple is built in the Chaulukya style of Hindu temple architecture.
    • It is dedicated to “Lord of the Soma”, which means Lord Shiva.
    • Mahmud Ghazni had attacked Somnath Temple in 1025 AD.

Topic: Miscellaneous

6. MV Jag Anand ship reached Japan, 23 crew members will return to India.

  • The MV Jag Anand ship stuck at Chinese port since June last year has finally reached Japan on 18 January.
  • The ship has been carrying coal from Australia to China. It got stuck after the Ship didn’t get permission to unload cargo in China. 
  • The incident happened due to worsening of diplomatic and trade relations between China and Australia.
  • After this incident, Australia coal producers are finding other alternative countries markets for their coal.

MV Jag Anand ship reached Japan

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Infrastructure and Energy

7. Kurnool Airport gets approval from DGCA for public use.

  • The Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has granted permission to Andhra Pradesh Airports Development Corporation Limited (APDCL) to open Kurnool airport (Orvakal) for public use.
  • It will help in providing direct air connectivity to Kurnool from any part of the country.
  • Indigo Airlines will provide a direct flight from Chennai, Visakhapatnam and Bengaluru to Kurnool under the UDAN-4 scheme.
  • It is located at Orvakal in Andhra Pradesh. It was built by the Andhra Pradesh Airports Development Corporation Limited.
  • Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA):
    • It is the statutory body formed under the Aircraft (Amendment) Bill, 2020.
    • It registers civil aircraft, certifies airports, provides a license to pilots and air traffic controllers and coordinates International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) matters.
    • It works under the Ministry of Civil Aviation.
    • Its headquarters is located in New Delhi.

Topic: Banking System

8. Financial Software and Systems (FSS) and India Post Payments Bank partnered to promote financial inclusion.

  • Financial Software and Systems (FSS) partnered with India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) to promote financial inclusion among underserved and unbanked segments.
  • Under the collaboration, IPPB will use FSS’ Aadhaar Enabled Payment System to provide banking service to people across the country.
  • It will help in bringing the unbanked customers into the financial mainstream. It will resolve the issue of accessibility of banking branches in rural areas.
  • IPPB, with its vast network, will provide the most affordable and trusted banking service at the customer’s doorstep.
  • This collaboration will help IPPB in providing a wide range of digital products to their customers and will also help in the vision of a cashless economy.
  • IPPB has become the largest bank of the country to provide interoperable banking services to customers of any bank.
  • FSS’ Aadhaar Enabled Payment System (AEPS):
    • It enables banks to improve the supply of financial services and bring quality banking services to the customer’s doorstep.
    • It is based on agents performing transactions on behalf of enrolled customers using a portable terminal - tablet, micro-ATM or a mobile device.
    • This banking services can be made available at local shops, markets and even post offices.
    • In this system, a customer can initiate transactions with the Aadhaar number or with their biometric.

Topic: Corporates/Companies

9. BharatPe gets debts of Rs 139 crore from Alteria capital and ICICI Bank.

  • BharatPe has got debts of Rs 90 crore from Alteria capital and Rs 49 crore from ICICI Bank.
  • In addition to Rs 139 crore debt from Alteria capital and ICICI Bank, BharatPe received Rs 60 crore in debt from Innoven Capital last week.
  • BharatPe is a private company providing merchants a single interface for all UPI apps.
  • BharatPe was started by Ashneer Grover and Shashvat Nakrani in 2018.
  • Alteria capital is an Indian venture debt firm started by Vinod Murali and Ajay Hattangadi in 2018.

Topic: State News/Jammu and Kashmir

10. Jammu-based NGO Border World Foundation files application seeking GI tag for India’s costliest mushroom.

  • Jammu-based NGO Border World Foundation has filed application seeking GI tag for India’s costliest mushroom.
  • This mushroom is grown in Doda district of Jammu and Kashmir. It is locally called Gucchi. It is also found in Kupwara, Pahalgam, Shopian, Kishtwar and Poonch.
  • It is found in temperate forests of the Doda district and have medicinal and anti-inflammatory properties.
  • It is a rare heirloom crop. Heirloom plant or heritage fruit is the one maintained by tribal populations.
  • Kashmir saffron was granted GI tag last year. The application was filed at Geographical Indication Registry





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