Daily Current Affairs and GK | 21 and 22 March 2021

Half Yearly (Jul- Dec 2020)
2020 Book

Current Affairs

Topic: Reports and Indices

1. World Happiness Report 2021 Released: Indian ranked 139, Finland topped.

  • India ranked 139th out of 149 countries on the list, according to the UN World Happiness Report 2021.
  • Finland ranked first in the list of the World Happiness Report 2021, followed by Iceland, Denmark, Switzerland, Netherlands, Sweden, Germany, and Norway.
  • UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network issued the World Happiness Report 2021.
  • 149 countries were ranked based on “how happy their citizens perceive themselves to be”.
  • In 2019, India was ranked 140th position.
  • Pakistan, Bangladesh, and China ranked 105th, 101st, and 84th, respectively, according to the 2021 report.
  • Afghanistan is the most unhappy country in the world, followed by Zimbabwe (148), Rwanda (147), Botswana (146), and Lesotho (145).
  • International Day of Happiness is observed every year on 20 March. Theme for 2021- “Happiness for All, Forever.”

Topic: National News

2. Energy Swaraj Yatra 2021- Energy by Locals for Locals.

  • Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ rode the Energy Swaraj Yatra Bus from his residence to his office.
  • The bus is equipped with solar energy. A professor from IIT Bombay, Dr. Chetan Solanki, designed and built the bus.
  • The bus is equipped with 3.2 kW solar panels and 6 kWh of battery storage.
  • The Energy Swaraj Yatra is an 11 years long initiative that is being carried out through a bus to make the Energy Swaraj a public movement.
  • The yatra that started in the year 2020 will continue till 2030.
  • Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh Shivraj Singh Chouhan recently announced Professor Solanki to be the Brand Ambassador of Solar Energy of Madhya Pradesh.
  • Energy Swaraj Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation that aims to promote Energy by Locals for Locals. Dr. Solanki is the founder of the Energy Swaraj Foundation.

Energy Swaraj Yatra 2021

(Source: Energyswarajyatra)

 

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

3. Jal Shakti Abhiyan: Catch the Rain campaign to be launched by PM Modi on World Water Day today.

  • Jal Shakti Abhiyan: Catch the Rain campaign will be launched by PM Modi on World Water Day today.
  • ‘Catch the rain, where it falls, when it falls’ is the theme for this campaign. The campaign will be carried out in both rural and urban areas. It will start from 22 March and continue till 30 November. 
  • On this occasion, a Memorandum of Agreement will also be signed between the Minister of Jal Shakti and the Chief Ministers of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh to implement the Ken Betwa Link Project.
  • Ken Betwa Link Project is the first project of the National Perspective Plan for the interlinking of rivers. Under Ken Betwa Link Project, the water will be transferred from the Ken to Betwa River through the construction of the Daudhan dam.
  • The project will provide irrigation, drinking water supply and hydropower. It would benefit several districts in MP and UP given below:
    • Panna, Tikamgarh, Chhatarpur, Sagar, Damoh, Datia, Vidisha, Shivpuri and Raisen districts of Madhya Pradesh
    • Banda, Mahoba, Jhansi and Lalitpur districts of Uttar Pradesh
  • In August 1980, the Ministry of Irrigation (now Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation) prepared the National Perspective Plan for interlinking of rivers.

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

4. New Nagar Van Scheme to help in creation of urban forests in cities.

  • Union Environment Minister said that the new Nagar Van Scheme would help in the creation of urban forests in cities.
  • In the first phase of the Nagar Van Scheme, urban forests will be developed in 200 cities.
  • He also said that water and fodder in forest programme had been started to reduce animal human conflicts.
  • As per Union Environment Minister, one forest in every state will be selected under this programme.
  • Further, water conservation and tree plantation will be done with the help of drone mapping under the programme.
  • Implementation of Nagar Van Scheme was announced by Union Environment Minister on 5 June 2020.

Nagar Van Scheme, urban forests will be developed in 200 cities

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: International News

5. SCO announces to hold ‘Pabbi-Antiterror-2021’ exercise.

  • Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) has announced to hold ‘Pabbi-Antiterror-2021’ exercise.
  • Pabbi-Antiterror-2021 will be a joint anti-terrorism exercise. India, Pakistan and China will participate in this exercise.
  • The decision to hold Pabbi-Antiterror-2021 was announced during the 36th meeting of the Council of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS).
  • The 36th meeting of the Council of RATS was organized in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, on 18 March.
  • RATS is a permanent organ of SCO. It is headquartered in Tashkent. Next meeting of RATS SCO will take place in September in Uzbekistan.
  • Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO):
    • Its creation was announced in 2001 by leaders of six nations.
    • Currently, it has eight members as India and Pakistan joined it in June 2017.
    • Other six members are China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
    • It is headquartered in Beijing, China.

Topic: State News/Arunachal Pradesh

6. Arunachal Pradesh’s first formal indigenous language and knowledge system school inaugurated in East Kameng district by Arunachal Pradesh CM.

  • Arunachal Pradesh CM has inaugurated the first formal indigenous language and knowledge system school in the East Kameng district.
  • The school is being called Nyubu Nyvgam Yerko. It was inaugurated by Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu at Rang village near Seppa.
  • Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu praised Donyi Polo Cultural and Charitable Trust for the initiative.
  • Vivekananda Kendra Vidyalaya group has taken up the responsibility to impart formal education to the students of the Nyubu Nyvgam Yerko.
  • Arunachal Pradesh:
    • Arunachal Pradesh is the easternmost state of India. Its capital is Itanagar.
    • It shares its border with Assam, Nagaland, Bhutan, Myanmar and China.
    • Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh: Pema Khandu
    • Governor of Arunachal Pradesh: BD Mishra

Topic: Important Days

7. World Water Day is being celebrated on 22 March with the theme “Valuing Water”.

  • World Water Day is celebrated on 22 March every year in the world.
  • The focus of this day is to show the importance of freshwater and raise awareness about the crisis of safe water in the world.
  • The theme of 2021 World Water Day is “Valuing Water”.
  • The United Nations General Assembly had adopted a resolution on 22 December 1992, which declared that World Water Day would be celebrated on 22 March each year.
  • The first World Water Day was celebrated on 22 March 1993.
  • The main aim of World Water Day is to support the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 6 and provide water and sanitation for all by 2030.
  • Sustainable Development Goal 6 is about “clean water and sanitation for all”.

Topic: Important Days

8. International Day of Forests celebrated on 21 March with the theme “Forest restoration: a path to recovery and well-being”.

  • The International Day of Forests is celebrated on 21 March every year.
  • The main aim of the day is to raise awareness about the value and signification of forests in our life and make the future better on the Earth.
  • The theme of 2021 is “Forest restoration: a path to recovery and well-being”.
  • In November 1971, the 16th session of the Conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization members had voted to celebrate “World Forestry Day” on March 21 of each year.
  • United Nations had declared 2011 as the ‘International Year of Forests’ to raise awareness for sustainable management, conservation, and sustainable development of all types of forests.
  • The International Day of Forests was declared to be celebrated annually on 21 March by the United Nations General Assembly on November 28, 2012.

Topic: Important Days

9. World Down Syndrome Day celebrated on 21 March with the theme “We Connect”.

  • The World Down Syndrome Day (WDSD) is celebrated annually on 21 March.
  • This day is celebrated to raise awareness about Down syndrome.
  • Down syndrome is a genetic disorder caused by the presence of all or part of the third copy of chromosome 21. It is usually associated with physical growth delays, mild to moderate intellectual disability, and characteristic facial features.
  • Down syndrome is also known as Trisomy 21.
  • The theme of World Down Syndrome Day 2021 is “We Connect”.
  • The Down Syndrome International (DSI) organization observed this day for the first time in 2006.
  • The United Nations General Assembly officially declared 21 March as World Down Syndrome Day on 19 December 2011.

Topic: Personality in News

10. Renowned Odissi dancer Laxmipriya Mohapatra passed away.

  • A Renowned Odissi dancer Laxmipriya Mohapatra has died at the age of 86.
  • She was the wife of famous classical dancer Kelucharan Mohapatra.
  • She was an expert in Odissi and Gotipua dance forms.
  • Gotipua is a traditional dance form of Odisha. It is performed by young boys to praise Jagannath and Krishna.
  • Odissi:
    • It is a classical dance of Odisha and it was traditionally performed in temples.
    • Odissi dance expresses Vaishnava themes and other traditions related to the Hindu gods Shiva and Surya.
    • Odissi dance is known for its style, independent postures of head, chest and hands, called bhanga. Tribhanga position is a very important part of the Odissi dance form.
    • Sujatha Mohapatra and Madhavi Mudgal are some famous dancers of this dance.

Topic: Appointments

11. Arindam Bagchi appointed as new spokesperson of Ministry of External Affairs.

  • Arindam Bagchi has been appointed as the new spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs.
  • He has replaced Anurag Srivastava.
  • Before this, he was serving as the joint secretary (north) at the MEA headquarters.
  • Ministry of External Affairs:
    • It is the government agency responsible for the conduct of foreign relations of India.
    • Dr. S. Jaishankar is the current External Affairs Minister of India.
    • Harsh Vardhan Shringla is the Foreign Secretary.
    • Jawahar Lal Nehru is the first Foreign Minister of India.

Topic: Sports

12. Singhraj clinches gold medal in the 2021 Para Shooting World Cup.

  • Indian para-athlete Singhraj has won a gold medal in the 2021 Para Shooting World Cup. He has defeated Server Ibragimov to won the P1 - Men’s 10m Air Pistol SH1 final.
  • Manish Narwal, with 194.3 points, was settled in fourth place.
  • Rahul Jakhar has claimed a bronze medal in P3 mixed 25m air pistol SH1.
  • Mahavir Swaroop Unhalkar finished fifth in R1 men’s 10m air rifle standing SH1.
  • At present, India, with one gold and one bronze, is at the third position in the medal tally of the 2021 Para Shooting World Cup.
  • The 2021 Para Shooting World Cup is being held at Al Ain in the UAE.
 

 

 

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