- 1. National Panchayati Raj Day 2021: 24 April
- 2. Rekha Menon becomes first woman chairperson of Nasscom.
- 3. PM Modi launched distribution of e-property cards under SVAMITVA scheme.
- 4. RBI restricted American Express Banking Corp and Diners Club International Limited from adding new customers.
- 5. Washington Sundar and Devdutt Padikkal appointed as brand ambassadors of Puma.
- 6. Arjun Kalyan becomes India’s 68th Chess Grandmaster of India.
- 7. UN English Day: 23 April
- 8. US, Japan, and France will hold joint military exercise.
- 9. United Nations released second World Ocean Assessment report.
- 10. NASA launched SHIELDS Mission from the White Sands Missile Range.
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Topic: Important Days
1. National Panchayati Raj Day 2021: 24 April
- Every year National Panchayati Raj Day is celebrated on 24th April.
- It is celebrated to mark the importance of Panchayats in the local administration. This day was first celebrated in 2010.
- The Prime Minister will also give the National Panchayat Awards 2021 on the occasion of National Panchayati Raj.
- The Ministry of Panchyati Raj is responsible for the celebration of National Panchayati Raj Day in India.
- On 24th April 1993, the President gave his assent to the 73rd Constitutional Amendment Bill for providing constitutional status to Panchayats.
- 73rd Constitutional Amendment Act:
- It provided constitutional status to Panchayats.
- Panchayati Raj system in India is a three-tier system- Panchayat at village level, Panchyat Samiti at Intermediate level, and Zila Parishad at district level.
- The Panchayat Raj system was first adopted by the state of Rajasthan in the Nagaur district.
- There are more than 2.6 lakh Panchayats in India.
- The 73rd Constitutional Amendment Act has added part IX and Eleventh Schedule to the Constitution.
2. Rekha Menon becomes first woman chairperson of Nasscom.
- Rekha Menon has been appointed as the first woman chairperson of the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM).
- Earlier, she was working as the chairperson and senior managing director at Accenture.
- She will take the place of U.B. Pravin Rao, who was the chairman of Nasscom for 2020-21.
- Krishnan Ramanujam will be the vice-chairperson of NASSCOM.
- National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM):
- It was established in 1988.
- It is a non-governmental trade association of the Indian software industry.
- It is a not-for-profit industry association.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
3. PM Modi launched distribution of e-property cards under SVAMITVA scheme.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched the distribution of e-property cards under the SVAMITVA scheme.
- On this occasion, e-property cards have been distributed to about 4.09 lakh property owners. With this distribution, the implementation of the SVAMITVA scheme has started across the country.
- SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) scheme:
- It was launched as a Central Sector Scheme on 24th April 2020.
- Its main objective is to create a socio-economically empowered and self-reliant rural India.
- It will cover 6.62 Lakh villages of the country from 2021-2025.
- It will enable people of rural India to use their property as a financial asset for taking loans and other financial benefits.
- It will create accurate land records for rural planning. The demarcation of rural areas will be done through modern technology and GIS maps.
- It was launched on a pilot basis in the states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, and Punjab.
- The Ministry of Panchayati Raj is implementing this scheme.
Topic: Banking System
4. RBI restricted American Express Banking Corp and Diners Club International Limited from adding new customers.
- Reserve Bank of India has imposed ban on American Express Banking Corp and Diners Club International Limited from adding new customers to their card networks from 1 May.
- The restriction has been imposed for not complying with data storage rules. Both companies have been found guilty of not following the directions regarding mandatory storage of customer data within systems in India.
- According to the RBI direction, all data related to transactions, payments, and customer information should be stored within India.
- RBI has taken this decision under the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 (PSS Act).
- American Express Banking Corp provides financial services in India. It offers credit cards, charge cards, and expense management solutions.
- Diners Club International Ltd offers charge cards to consumers, corporations, and enterprises in India. It is owned by Discover Financial Services.
5. Washington Sundar and Devdutt Padikkal appointed as brand ambassadors of Puma.
- Puma has appointed Washington Sundar and Devdutt Padikkal as their brand ambassadors.
- Already, Virat Kohli, L Rahul, Sushma Verma, and Yuvraj Singh are the brand ambassadors of Puma.
- Recently, Puma India has partnered with the Royal Challengers Bangalore.
- It is a German multinational company.
- It is involved in the manufacturing of athletic and casual footwear, apparel, and accessories.
- Abhishek Ganguly is the Executive Director of Puma in India.
6. Arjun Kalyan becomes India’s 68th Chess Grandmaster of India.
- Arjun Kalyan has become the 68th Chess Grandmaster of India.
- He crossed the 2500 ELO mark by defeating Kosic Dragan of Montenegro in the ongoing GM round robin “Rujna Zora-3 2021” tournament.
- Viswanathan Anand is the first Chess Grand Master of India.
- All India Chess Federation is the governing body for chess in India.
- Chess is a competitive board game played between two players.
- Checkmate, King, Bishop, Castling are some prominent terms, which are used in Chess.
Topic: Important Days
7. UN English Day: 23 April
- The United Nations observes English Language Day every year on 23rd April.
- The objective of this day is to celebrate the multilingualism and the cultural diversity of a language.
- It is also celebrated as the birth anniversary of William Shakespeare. He was born on 23 April 1564 and died on 23 April 1616.
- The UN Department of Global Communications had established language days for Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish languages in 2010. These languages are the official languages of the United Nations.
- The English Language is spoken by more than 983 million people across the world.
- United Nations language days are as follows:
8. US, Japan, and France will hold joint military exercise.
- Japan will hold the first joint military exercise with the US and France. It will be the first time that troops of all three countries are involved in such a large-scale exercise.
- It is scheduled to be organized from May 11 to 17 at the JGSDF’s Kirishima training ground and Camp in the Kyushu region.
- It will strengthen the defence cooperation between these countries. It is a step to counter the aggressiveness of China in the East and South China seas.
- Japan, the United States, and France troops will share their experience and Skills.
- Recently, China has claimed over the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. China claims the majority of the South China Sea.
Topic: Reports and Indices
9. United Nations released second World Ocean Assessment report.
- Recently, United Nations has released the Second World Ocean Assessment report.
- It is an integrated assessment of the world’s ocean environmental, economic and social aspects at the global level. It provides comprehensive scientific information on the marine environment.
- According to this report, the management of human uses of the ocean requires improved coordination and cooperation.
- The marine environment can be protected by establishing marine protected areas and improved management of pollution and fisheries.
- Many human activities like climate change, unsustainable fishing, and pollution have degraded the condition of Oceans in the world.
- Dead zones in the oceans have doubled between 2008 to 2019.
- More than 90% of the Mangrove Seagrass and marsh plants are facing extinction.
- The first World Ocean Assessment (WOA I) was released in 2015.
- SDG 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas, and marine resources for sustainable development
Topic: Space and IT
10. NASA launched SHIELDS Mission from the White Sands Missile Range.
- NASA successfully launched the Spatial Heterodyne Interferometric Emission Line Dynamics Spectrometer (SHIELDS) mission from the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.
- It will go up to a height of 300 kilometers.
- SHIELDS is a telescope that will examine the light coming from hydrogen atoms of interstellar space. These interstellar hydrogen atoms have a neutral electrical charge, which allows them to pass from magnetic lines.
- SHIELDS will help investigators to find out the shape and matter density around the heliopause barrier. It will also help scientists in getting information about the galaxy’s magnetic field.