Daily Current Affairs and GK | 2 July 2024

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 02 Jul 2024 16:31 PM IST

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Topic: International News

1. Denmark became the first country to impose a tax on livestock farmers.

  • Denmark has levied a tax on livestock farmers for the greenhouse gases emitted by their cows, sheep and pigs.
  • The tax has been imposed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 70% from 1990 levels by 2030.
  • As per a report by the UN, livestock are responsible for about 32% of human-caused methane emissions.
  • A normal cow can generate up to 200kg of methane annually while a Danish cow produce 6.6 tons of carbon dioxide per year.
  • Danish livestock farmers will be taxed 300 kroner ($43) per ton of CO2, which will be increased to 750 kroner ($108) by 2035.
  • The tax is part of Denmark’s strategy to meet climate goals. The collected tax amount will be invested in environmental restoration projects.

Topic: Environment and Ecology

2. A $1.5 bn loan has been approved by the World Bank to support India’s green hydrogen initiatives.

  • To help India accelerating its low-carbon energy development, a $1.5-billion loan has been approved by the World Bank.
  • The funds will be used to promote a market for green hydrogen, electrolysers, and increased renewable energy penetration.
  • World Bank had approved the $1.5-billion First Low-Carbon Energy Programmatic Development Policy Operation in June 2023.
  • It supported the waiver of transmission charges for renewable energy in green hydrogen projects.
  • It also paved the path to launch 50 GW of renewable energy tenders annually and supported in creating a legal framework for a national carbon credit market.
  • The Second Low-Carbon Energy Programmatic Development Policy Operation will boost the production of green hydrogen and electrolysers, critical technology needed for green hydrogen production.
  • The government has set a target of achieving 500 GW of installed renewable energy capacity by 2030.
  • National Green Hydrogen Mission was also launched by the government to promote the manufacturing of electrolysers and green hydrogen.

Topic: Banking System

3. On 29 June, “Union Premier” branches launched by Union Bank of India for high value customers in rural and semi-urban (RUSU) markets.

  • According to the Union Bank of India, these branches, designed to provide personalized banking services, will offer a wide range of products and services under one roof to high-value customers in RUSU markets.
  • Every Union Premier customer will have access to a personal Relationship Manager to meet all their banking needs.
  • These specialized branches are equipped with the latest digital technologies, ensuring seamless and efficient banking.
  • Customers will get quick services in minimum time, making their banking experience faster and hassle-free.
  • Premier branches will provide a seamless and luxurious banking experience keeping in mind the needs and preferences of customers.

Topic: Defence

4. INS Shivalik is participating in the Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC)-24.

  • INS Shivalik, an Indian multi-role stealth frigate deployed in the South China Sea and North Pacific Ocean, is participating in the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise, the world's largest naval exercise.
  • The 29th biennial Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC), a multinational exercise involving 29 nations and more than 25,000 personnel, is being conducted in and around the Hawaiian Islands from June 27 to August 1.
  • Several seminars, exercise planning discussions, sports competitions and mutual deck tours are being organized in the harbour phase of the exercise to be conducted from 27 June to 07 July 2024.
  • The sea phase of RIMPAC-24 is divided into three sub-phases.
  • During the first two sub-phases, the warships will complete basic and advanced level integration exercises.
  • The event will conclude with a large force-based tactical exercise at the combat skill level.
  • About 29 countries are participating in the current edition of this multi-dimensional exercise led by the US Navy.
  • INS Shivalik is an indigenously designed and built 6,000-tonne stealth missile-launching frigate.
  • RIMPAC was established in 1971 by Australia, Canada and the United States.

Rim of the Pacific Exercise 2024

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: National Appointment

5. Sujata Saunik became the first woman Chief Secretary of Maharashtra.

  • On June 30, 1987 batch IAS officer Sujata Saunik broke a 64-year-old tradition in Maharashtra and became the first woman Chief Secretary of the state.
  • Saunik took over as chief secretary (CS) in the ministry from his predecessor Nitin Kareer, who will retire in June next year.
  • Saunik, the most senior IAS officer of the state, was serving as the Additional Chief Secretary (ACS), Home and General Administration Department.

Topic: Banking System

6. A platform will be created by RBI and ASEAN to accelerate cross-border retail payments.

  • To facilitate instant cross-border retail payments, the Reserve Bank of India and the ASEAN nations have decided to create a platform.
  • The platform is expected to go live by 2026.
  • RBI has joined Project Nexus, a global multilateral initiative that connects domestic Fast Payment Systems (FPS) to enable instantaneous cross-border retail payments.
  • NEXUS is conceptualised by the Innovation Hub of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS).
  • It aims to connect FPSs from four ASEAN countries (Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand) and India, which will be the founding members and first movers of the platform.
  • An agreement to this effect was signed on June 29 in Basel, Switzerland, by BIS and the central banks of the founding countries (Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), Bank of Thailand (BOT), Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)), and RBI.
  • Once functional, Nexus will play a vital role in making retail cross-border payments efficient, faster and more cost-effective.
  • RBI is pursuing bilateral collaboration with various countries to link India's FPS - Unified Payments Interface (UPI) with their respective FPSs for cross-border person-to-person (P2P) and person-to-merchant (P2M) payments.
Monthly Current Affairs eBooks
June Monthly Current Affairs 2024 May Monthly Current Affairs 2024
April Monthly Current Affairs 2024 March Monthly Current Affairs 2024

Topic: Economy/Banking/Finance

7. Basic demat account limit has been increased by SEBI to Rs 10 lakh from the current Rs 2 lakh.

  • To encourage more small investors to participate in the securities market, the limit has been raised.
  • The revised rules will take effect on September 1.
  • The Basic Services Demat Account (BSDA) value limit on stocks has been increased to encourage small investors to engage in the stock market.
  • A more basic form of a standard demat account is called a basic service demat account (BSDA).
  • In order to lessen the financial burden of demat fees on investors with small holdings, SEBI launched this facility in 2012.
  • According to SEBI, a person is qualified for a BSDA provided they satisfy specific requirements, like having only one demat account as the primary holder and just one BSDA in their name across all depositories.  
  • A BSDA will have no annual maintenance fees for portfolio values up to Rs 4 lakh.
  • The fees would be Rs 100 for portfolio values exceeding Rs 4 lakh and up to Rs 10 lakh.
  • The BSDA account ought to be automatically transformed into a conventional demat account if the value of the portfolio is above Rs 10 lakh.
  • Such account holders would receive free of cost electronic statements.
  • The cost of a physical statement can be Rs 25 per statement.

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

8. eSankhyiki Portal has been launched by Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation for enhanced user experience and ease of data access.

  • The portal has been developed by the ministry to provide real-time inputs for planners, policy-makers, researchers and the public.
  • The portal aims to set up a comprehensive data management and sharing system for ease of dissemination of official statistics.
  • The portal has two modules, namely data catalogue module and macro indicators module.
  • Data catalogue module has seven data products and over 2291 datasets. 
  • Macro indicators module includes MoSPI’s four major products: National Accounts Statistics, Consumer Price Index, Index of Industrial Production, Annual Survey of Industries. It hosts more than 1.7 million records.
  • Dr. Arvind Panagariya, Chairman of the 16th Finance Commission officially launched the portal on 29th June 2024.

Topic: Committees/ Commissions/Taskforces

9. Government formed a 26-member committee for the revision of the base year.

  • The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) has formed a 26-member committee headed by Biswantah Goldar to revise the base year for national accounts.
  • G C Manna, former Director-General of the CSO, Chetan Ghate from the Institute of Economic Growth, and Partha Ray from NIBM, Pune are some prominent members of this committee.
  • The current base year for indices like the Wholesale Price Index (WPI), Producer Price Index (PPI), and Consumer Price Index (CPI) is 2011-12.
  • The committee will also recommend a new base year for national accounts, which is likely to be 2020-21.
  • The main objective of the initiative is to increase the accuracy of economic analysis and policy formulation by reviewing existing databases and incorporating new data sources.
  • It will also give recommendations on adopting the latest UN standards and classifications for developing sector-wise accounts.
  • This initiative will be step towards modernizing national accounting practices and will foster robust research and policy formulation capabilities.
  • The base year acts as a reference point for tracking economic variables.

Topic: State News/ Rajasthan

10. Rajasthan CM Bhajan Lal launched 'Chief Minister Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana'.

  • Chief Minister Bhajan Lal Sharma transferred Rs 650 crore to beneficiary farmers under the 'Chief Minister Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana' at Tonk.
  • Chief Minister Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana has been started on the lines of Prime Minister Kisan Samman Nidhi.
  • Under this scheme, two thousand rupees will be transferred each year to the account of each beneficiary farmer through DBT.
  • The amount will be given in three instalments of Rs 1000, Rs 500 and Rs 500. The Chief Minister transferred the first instalment directly on June 30, 2024.
  • Farmers are already getting 6 thousand rupees per year under the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi.
  • It will farmers in buying fertilizers and seeds and to do other agriculture related works.

Topic: Summits/ Conferences/ Meetings

11. Global IndiaAI Summit 2024 will be hosted by India.

  • The Global IndiaAI Summit 2024 will be held on July 3-4 in New Delhi.
  • It is expected to be attended by leading AI experts, industry representatives, international organisations and members of academia.
  • The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology is organizing the summit.
  • The summit will focus on advancing AI development in seven key areas outlined by the India AI Mission: compute capabilities, foundational models, datasets, application development, future skills, startup financing, and safe AI.
  • The IndiaAI Mission aim is to build a comprehensive ecosystem that fosters AI innovation and ensures responsible and inclusive growth of AI in the country.
  • As the lead chair of the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI), India will also host member countries and experts to advance GPAI's mission of promoting safe, secure and trustworthy AI.

Topic: Important Days

12. National Doctors' Day 2024: 1 July

  • National Doctors' Day is celebrated in India on 1 July. It is celebrated in memory of Dr. Bidhan Chandra Roy.
  • It is celebrated every year to honour the contribution of Doctors.
  • The Indian Medical Association (IMA) observes the day in India to honor all physicians and healthcare professionals.
  • The first National Doctor's Day was celebrated on 1 July in 1991.
  • The theme of National Doctors' Day 2024 is "Healing Hands, Caring Hearts."
  • Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy:
    • He was a renowned physician, educator, independence fighter, and social worker.
    • He also served as the second Chief Minister of West Bengal from 1948 to 1962.
    • He was born in Patna, Bihar on July 1, 1882.

National Doctors' Day 2024

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: National Appointments

13. Ravi Agrawal has been appointed as the new CBDT chief.

  • Ravi Agrawal became the new chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).
  • He has taken the place of Nitin Gupta, whose tenure ended on June 30.
  • In June 2022, Nitin Gupta was appointed as the Central Board of Direct Taxes chairman.
  • Earlier, Ravi Agrawal was working as a member (administration) in the CBDT board.
  • The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has said that Ravi Agrawal will be CBDT chief till June 2025.
  • Pragya Sahay Saksena, HBS Gill, Pravin Kumar, Sanjay Kumar and Sanjay Kumar Verma are the other members of the CBDT board.
  • The CBDT is headed by a chairman and could have six members. It is responsible for administering the direct tax laws in India.

Topic: Space and IT

14. SERA announced India as a partner country for its human spaceflight programme.

  • The U.S.-based Space Exploration and Research Agency (SERA) has made India as part of its human spaceflight programme.
  • Under its human spaceflight programme, six citizen astronauts from across the world will go into space.
  • This program will be implemented in association with Blue-Origin.
  • The selected citizens will go into space for an 11-minute journey in New Shepard, Blue Origin’s reusable suborbital rocket.
  • People interested in the programme will have to pay $2.50 for verification checks and will have to meet certain physical requirements.
  • The candidates will be selected through a public vote.
  • In recent times, India has achieved many milestones in the space domain including landing on the south pole of the moon.

human spaceflight programme

(Source: PIB)

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