Daily Current Affairs and GK | 31 July 2021
- 1. Alphabet to launch a new robotics company ‘Intrinsic’.
- 2. Anushka Sharma becomes the brand ambassador of GIVA.
- 3. Vantika Agarwal won Women's National online chess title.
- 4. Satpura Tiger Reserve wins NatWest Group Earth Heroes Award.
- 5. SAFAL assessment framework for CBSE students launched by PM Modi.
- 6. Eighth WHO report on the global tobacco epidemic released.
- 7. Ministry of Education and CBSE launched ‘AI For All' initiative.
- 8. US issued new sanctions on Cuba.
- 9. National Gallery of Australia will return 14 artworks to India.
- 10. Government to set up Centre for Bio-Resources & Sustainable Development in Northeast.
- 11. World Ranger Day: 31st July
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1. Alphabet to launch a new robotics company ‘Intrinsic’.
- Google parent company Alphabet will launch a new robotics company named “Intrinsic”. It will focus on creating software for industrial robots.
- Alphabet’s X was launched a decade ago to use new technologies to solve global problems. “Intrinsic” comes out from segment X.
- The main aim of this company will be to make industrial robots easier to use, less costly, and more flexible. It will help in making new products, businesses, and services.
- Google is now focusing on simple robotic machines that can perform and learn tasks through machine learning.
- It was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998.
- Alphabet Inc is the parent company of Google.
- Sundar Pichai is the current CEO of Google.
2. Anushka Sharma becomes the brand ambassador of GIVA.
- GIVA, a jewellery startup, has made Anushka Sharma its brand ambassador.
- Ishendra Agarwal is the founder and chief executive officer of GIVA.
- Godrej Expert Easy announces actor Saif Ali Khan as its brand ambassador. Godrej Expert is India’s first hair colour brand.
- WWF India announced Shruti Haasan as brand ambassador. WWF work for conserving the natural environment.
Godrej Expert Easy
Saif Ali Khan
3. Vantika Agarwal won Women's National online chess title.
- Vantika Agarwal has bagged the Women's National online chess title. She scored 9.5 points in 11 rounds.
- Arpita Mukherjee and Sreeja Seshadri secured second and third spot respectively.
- Maharastra’s Soumya Swaminathan and Tamil Nadu’s R Vaishali finished in fourth and fifth position respectively.
- In the junior section, V. S. Raahul secured the first position with 9.5 points. Bharath Subrahamaniam and P Iniyan secured second and third positions respectively.
- This online chess event was organized by the All India Chess Federation.
Topic: Award and Prizes
4. Satpura Tiger Reserve wins NatWest Group Earth Heroes Award.
- The Satpura Tiger Reserve of Madhya Pradesh has bagged the NatWest Group Earth Heroes Award in the Earth Guardian category for best management.
- Satpura Tiger Reserve is spread over an area of 2130 square kilometers in Hoshangabad district. It is one of the oldest forests in India.
- It is the soul of the ecosystem of the central region of India. Satpura accounts for 17 percent of the country's tiger population and 12% of tiger habitat.
- Satpura Tiger Reserve has more than 1300 species of plants, 50 species of mammals, 254 species of birds, and 30 species of reptiles.
NatWest Group Earth Heroes Awards:
NatWest Group Earth Heroes Awards was constituted in 2011.
It is given to individuals and institutions for their outstanding work in biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation.
It is given in five categories.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
5. SAFAL assessment framework for CBSE students launched by PM Modi.
- SAFAL (Structured Assessment for Analyzing Learning levels) assessment framework for CBSE students was launched by PM Modi.
- SAFAL is a competency-based assessment for grades 3, 5 and 8 introduced by CBSE on the first anniversary of National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
- The progress of foundational skills and basic learning outcomes among students will be assessed by using SAFAL.
- SAFAL will provide feedback to schools and teachers to improve teaching-learning without putting additional examination pressure on students.
- SAFAL results will not be used by schools for the promotion of students to the next grade.
- SAFAL will be conducted on a pilot basis in CBSE schools for students in Grades 3, 5 and 8 during the academic year 2021-22.
Topic: Reports and Indices
6. Eighth WHO report on the global tobacco epidemic released.
- Eighth WHO report on the global tobacco epidemic has been released.
- The report tracks progress made by countries in tobacco control since 2008.
- The report for the first time provides data on electronic nicotine delivery systems, such as ‘e-cigarettes’.
- The report is titled “WHO report on the global tobacco epidemic 2021: addressing new and emerging products”.
- The report finds increased adoption of WHO-recommended tobacco control measures. The six MPOWER measures were introduced by WHO.
- MPOWER measures are intended to assist in the country-level implementation of effective interventions to reduce the demand for tobacco. They are given next:
- Monitor tobacco use and prevention policies
- Protect people from tobacco smoke
- Offer help to quit tobacco use
- Warn people about the dangers of tobacco
- Enforce bans on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship
- Raise taxes on tobacco
- The report finds that there is a need to tackle threats posed by new nicotine and tobacco products and 84 countries lack safeguards to protect from an unregulated proliferation of electronic nicotine delivery systems.
- The report says that 102 countries have introduced one or more MPOWER measures at the highest level of achievement since 2007 and more than half of all countries are now covered by graphic health warnings on tobacco packaging at best-practice level.
7. Ministry of Education and CBSE launched ‘AI For All' initiative.
- Ministry of Education and CBSE in collaboration with Intel has launched the ‘AI For All' initiative.
- The main objective of this initiative is to create a basic understanding of artificial intelligence (AI) for everyone in India.
- ‘AI For All’ is a 4-hour, self-paced learning program and it aims to teach AI to 1 million citizens in the first year.
- It is divided into two sections – AI Awareness (1.5 hours) and AI Appreciation (2.5 hours). The AI For All initiative is part of Intel’s corporate social responsibility efforts.
- In the era of digital transformation the role of emerging technologies like AI, machine learning has increased.
- NITI Aayog has also created a National Strategy for AI on the philosophy of 'AI For All'. National Education Policy-2020 has also emphasized on teaching artificial intelligence.
- Artificial intelligence (AI) is the ability of machines to learn from experience, adjust to new inputs, and perform human-like tasks.
Topic: International News
8. US issued new sanctions on Cuba.
- The Biden administration has imposed new sanctions on the Cuban police force and two of its leaders.
- The sanction has been imposed in response to the Cuban government’s action on protesters. Cuba’s government has tried to suppress the peaceful and pro-democratic protests.
- The protests erupted in earlier July due to the economic crisis and record surge in coronavirus infections.
- Cuba’s government is controlling the financial sector and all communications.
- The Biden administration is also considering proposals to provide internet access to Cubans and has created a working group to review US remittance policy for Cuba.
- It is an island country located in the northern Caribbean.
- Its capital is Havana and its currency is the Cuban Peso.
- Miguel Díaz-Canel is the current President and Manuel Marrero Cruz is the Prime Minister of Cuba.
Topic: Art and Culture
9. National Gallery of Australia will return 14 artworks to India.
- The National Gallery of Australia (NGA) will return 14 artworks to India that are suspected of having been stolen, looted or exported illegally.
- The artwork includes sculptures, photos, and a scroll and are worth around $2.2m. It is the fourth time the NGA will return the Indian government antiquities.
- The artworks which are returned also include dancing child-saint Sambandar of 12th century belonging to Chola dynasty, and divine couple Lakshmi and Vishnu [Lakshmi Narayana] of 11th-12th century.
National Gallery of Australia:
- It is one of the largest art museums in Australia.
- It is located in Canberra.
- It is holding more than 166,000 artworks.
Topic: National News
10. Government to set up Centre for Bio-Resources & Sustainable Development in Northeast.
- Ministry of Science and Technology has announced to set up a Bio-Resources & Sustainable Development center in Northeast.
- Centre for Bio-Resources and Sustainable Development was sanctioned by the Department of Biotechnology. It will be established in Papum Pare district of Arunachal Pradesh.
- In recent days, the Government has established many technical institutions in Northeast.
- The Northeast region will soon have its own Technology Resource Centres.
- North-East India comprises eight states namely Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tripura, and Sikkim.
Institute of Bioresources and Sustainable Development (IBSD):
Its main aim is bio-resources development and their sustainable use through biotechnological interventions for the socio-economic growth of the region.
It is registered under the Manipur Societies Registration Act, 1989.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Important Days
11. World Ranger Day: 31st July
- World Ranger Day is observed every year worldwide on 31st July.
- It is observed to commemorate Rangers that have been injured or killed in the line of duty.
- According to a report, on average rangers in Asia and Africa worked 70-90 hours every week and most of them are not covered by any insurance policy.
- On this occasion, IUCN and the World Commission on Protected Areas give International Ranger Awards.
- The first World Ranger Day was celebrated in 2007 by the International Ranger Federation.
- A Ranger is a person who is responsible for preserving and protecting the natural protected areas.