Daily Current Affairs and GK | 21 May 2021

By PendulumEdu | Last Modified: 22 May 2021 07:46 AM IST

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Topic: Defence

1. INS Rajput to be decommissioned on May 21.

  • The first destroyer of the Indian Navy, INS Rajput, will be decommissioned on May 21. It was commissioned on 04 May 1980.
  • After rendering service for 41 years, it will be decommissioned at the Naval Dockyard of Visakhapatnam.
  • INS Rajput was built by Russia in the 61 Communards Shipyard. Its Original Russian name was ‘Nadezhny’.
  • INS Rajput served for both Western and Eastern Fleets and its first commanding officer was Capt Gulab Mohanlal Hiranandani.
  • It is the first Indian Naval Ship to be associated with an Indian Army regiment – the Rajput Regiment.
  • It participated in many operations including Operation Aman, Operation Pawan, Operation Cactus, etc.

INS Rajput to be decommissioned

(Source: News on AIR)


Topic: International News

2. US Congress passes Anti-Asian hate crimes bill.

  • The United States parliament has passed the Covid-19 Hate Crimes bill. It was introduced by Grace Meng and Mazie Hirono.
  • The bill has been approved to combat the hate crimes against Asians during the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Last year, the cases against racially motivated crimes against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders had increased. Around 3,795 incidents of hate crimes were reported between March 2020 and February 2021.
  • The bill proposes to create a new position at the Justice Department to review the Covid-19-related hate crimes against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
  • The law also directs departments of Justice and Health and Human Services to spread awareness against hate crimes across the country.

Topic: Important Days

3. International Tea Day is celebrated each year on 21 May.

  • 21 May was celebrated as International Tea Day for the first time in 2020.
  • International Tea Day aims to raise awareness about history and cultural and economic significance of tea all over the world.
  • Tea is a beverage. It is made from Camellia sinesis plant. After water, tea is the most consumed drink in the world.
  • It is believed to be originated from northeast India, north Myanmar and southwest China.
  • Four tea cultivation sites designated as Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) are located in China, Korea and Japan.
  • Tea processing and production contribute to four Sustainable Development Goals given below:
    • Reduction of extreme poverty (Goal 1)
    • Fight against hunger (Goal 2)
    • Empowerment of women (Goal 5)
    • Sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems (Goal 15)

International Tea Day

Topic: Biotechnology and Diseases

4. ICMR gives approval to CoviSelf kit for home testing.

  • Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has given approval to the CoviSelf kit for home testing of symptomatic patients.
  • ICMR has issued an advisory for COVID-19 home testing. In the advisory, ICMR said that users would be required to download My lab app on their mobile phones.
  • My lab app provides a comprehensive guide to the testing procedure. It will provide positive or negative test results to the patient.
  • ICMR said that only a nasal swab would be needed for this Rapid Antigen Testing.  
  • All users will be required to click the picture of the test strip after completing the test procedure.
  • The picture should be clicked with the same mobile phone which has been used for downloading the mobile app and user registration.

CoviSelf kit for home testing

Topic: Important Days

5. 12th Annual Day of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) commemorated on 20 May.

  • 12th Annual Day of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) was virtually commemorated on 20 May.
  • Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman addressed different invitees in the inaugural session of the event to commemorate 12th Annual Day of CCI.
  • On occasion, she released the ‘CCI Journal on Competition Law and Policy’.
  • It was established under the Competition Commission Act, 2002, but it became fully functional in May 2009.

Topic: Important Days

6. World Bee Day is observed on 20 May.

  • World Bee Day is observed on 20 May. It is the day on which Anton Jansa was born.
  • Its purpose is to acknowledge the role bees and other pollinators play in the ecosystem. Anton Jansa is known as the pioneer of beekeeping.
  • World Bee Day 2021 is the fourth World Bee Day. 20th May was proclaimed as World Bee Day in 2017.
  • On World Bee Day 2021, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) organized a virtual event under the theme “Bee engaged – Build Back Better for Bees”.

Topic: Reports and Indices

7. India’s rank on EY’s Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index (RECAI) moves up a place to 3rd position.

  • India’s rank on 57th EY Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index (RECAI) has moved up a place to 3rd position.
  • US and China respectively occupy first and second positions on EY’s Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index.
  • India was ranked 4th place in the previous ranking. India’s good performance on the index is due to its exceptional performance on the solar photovoltaic front.
  • Installed solar PV capacity in India has increased to 39 GW. Installed solar PV capacity in India has overtaken the wind capacity for the first time.
  • As per the report, India’s solar sector will grow substantially after Covid-19 pandemic. 
  • As per EY (Ernst & Young), global renewable energy capacity investments increased 2% to $303.5 billion.
  • EY (Ernst & Young) is a multinational professional services network with headquarters in London. It is one of the big four accounting firms. It mainly provides consulting and advisory services.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

8. India and Oman renew MoUs on military cooperation and maritime issues.

  • The Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) on military cooperation and maritime issues have been renewed between India and Oman.
  • The MoUs were signed between the Secretary-General of the Ministry of Defense of Oman and Ambassador of India to Oman.
  • The military cooperation MoU was signed at Muscat and MoU on cooperation on maritime issues was signed at the Maritime Security Centre.

military cooperation and maritime issues


  • It is a West Asian country located on the southeast side of the Arabian Peninsula.
  • The capital of Oman is Muscat and its currency is Omani Rial.
  • It is the oldest independent state in the Arab world.
  • It shares a border with the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Iran, and Pakistan.
  • Haitham bin Tariq Al Said is the sultan of Oman.

Topic: Art and Culture

9. Six Indian places added to tentative list of UNESCO world heritage sites.

  • Culture and Tourism Minister Prahlad Patel announced that Six Indian sites had been added to the tentative list of UNESCO’s world heritage sites.
  • The nomination of these sites was proposed by the Archaeological Survey of India.
  • The six sites are as follows:

Temples of Kanchipuram in Tamil Nadu

  • Kanchipuram is one of the most ancient cities of southern India.
  • Kanchipuram is also known as the Golden City of Temples.

Ganga ghats in Varanasi

  • Varanasi has more than 80 ghats.
  • Manikarnika and Harishchandra are important ghats for cremation.

Satpura Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh

  • It has the largest tiger population.
  • It is rich in biodiversity.

Megalithic site of Hire Benkal

  • Hire Benkal in Karnataka is one of the important Megalithic sites of India.

Maratha Military Architecture in Maharashtra

  • There are 12 forts in Maharashtra related to Maratha.

Bhedaghat-Lametaghat in Narmada Valley- Jabalpur

  • It is located in Madhya Pradesh.
  • It is also known as the Grand Canyon of India.
  • As of now, India has 48 sites in the tentative list of UNESCO’s world heritage sites.
  • According to operation guidelines, it is mandatory to put any monument/site on the Tentative List (TL) before final nomination.

list of UNESCO world heritage sites

(Source: Ministry of Culture)

Topic: Important Days

10. Anti-Terrorism Day: 21 May

  • Every year Anti-Terrorism Day is observed in India on 21 May.
  • The day is celebrated to spread the message of peace and humanity and to promote unity among the people.
  • Apart from this, it is also observed as the death anniversary of Rajiv Gandhi.
  • It was proposed by the V P Singh government after the assassination of India’s Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.
  • As per the latest Global Terrorism (GTI) 2020 report, South Asia is the most impacted region by terrorism in the world.
  • Around 65 terrorist groups are active in India with different agendas.

Anti-Terrorism Day

Rajiv Gandhi

  • He was the sixth Prime Minister of India.
  • Rajiv Gandhi served as Prime Minister from 1984 to 1989.
  • He was the youngest Prime Minister of India.
  • He died in May 1991 in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu.
  • He played a crucial role in the telecom and IT revolution of India.

Topic: Appointments

11. Pinarayi Vijayan sworn in as Chief Minister of Kerala.

  • Pinarayi Vijayan becomes the Chief Minister of Kerala for the second successive time.
  • According to Article 164 of the Indian constitution, the Chief Minister is appointed by the Governor and the other ministers are appointed on the advice of the Chief Minister.
  • Governor Arif Mohammad Khan administered the oath of office to Pinarayi Vijayan.
  • Pinarayi Vijayan is the first Chief Minister of Kerala to be appointed for the second consecutive term.
  • Pinarayi Vijayan will head the 21 member’s cabinet, which includes three women.
  • Kerala Legislative Assembly has a strength of 140 members. In the recently held election, CPI (M) has won 99 seats while INC has won 41 seats.

Pinarayi Vijayan sworn in as Chief Minister


  • It was formed on 1 November 1956.
  • The state shares its border with Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
  • Its capital is Thiruvananthapuram.
  • Pinarayi Vijayan is the Chief Minister and Governor is Arif Mohammad Khan.
  • Kerala is known as the Spice Garden of India.
  • Its official language is Malayalam.
  • Kerala has 20 Lok Sabha seats and 9 Rajya Sabha seats.

Topic: Awards and Prizes

12. Winners of the 2020 Millennium Technology Prize are declared.

  • Chemists Shankar Balasubramanian and David Klenerman were declared winners of the 2020 Millennium Technology Prize.
  • They got this award for the development of the Next Generation DNA Sequencing (NGS) techniques. It will help in determining the DNA sequence in less time.
  • The main aim of this prize is to promote technological research and innovation for a better life.
  • In 2004, Tim Berners-Lee received the first Millennium Technology Prize for the discovery of World Wide Web.
  • Millennium Technology Prize:
    • It a prestigious science and technology prize.
    • It is awarded by Technology Academy Finland (TAF).
    • 1 million Euro is awarded as Prize money.

Winners of the 2020 Millennium Technology Prize






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