Daily Current Affairs and GK | 31 May 2022
- 1. Cabinet approved the sale of government residual 29.5% stake in Hindustan Zinc limited.
- 2. Bihar government gave permission for exploration of India’s largest gold reserve in Jamui district.
- 3. World No Tobacco Day 2022: 31 May
- 4. A ten-day Gen Next Democracy Network program concluded on May 30.
- 5. Supercomputer Param Ananta, with a capability of 838 teraflops, installed at IIT Gandhinagar.
- 6. NCTE launched an online portal to streamline the process of recognizing teacher education programs.
- 7. PM Modi released benefits under PM CARES for Children Scheme on 30 May 2022.
- 8. As per the RBI survey, Rs 100 denomination banknotes are most preferred by people in India.
- 9. National Health Authority launched an online dashboard for Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission.
- 10. Government will launch a common platform ‘Jan Samarth’ for the delivery of schemes.
- 11. Goa celebrated its 35th statehood day.
- 12. Adani Hybrid Energy subsidiary sets up India's first wind-solar hybrid power plant in Jaisalmer.
- 13. Justice Mohanty gets an additional charge of Lokpal chairperson.
- 14. Public Sector Banks’ profit doubled in financial year 2021-22.
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1. Cabinet approved the sale of government residual 29.5% stake in Hindustan Zinc limited.
- The government by selling 29.5% stake in Hindustan Zinc limited will raise around Rs 38,000 crores.
- At present, Vedanta Ltd holds 64.92 percent stake in Hindustan Zinc.
- In 2021, the Supreme Court had allowed the government to divest the remaining shareholding of 29.5 percent in Hindustan Zinc.
- The government may sell its stake in tranches through an offer for sale (OFS).
- This deal will help the government in achieving the Rs 65,000-crore divestment target for the financial year 2022-23.
- Hindustan Zinc was privatized in 2002. Its management was transferred to Vedanta group subsidiary Sterlite.
- Recently, the government has withdrawn its decision to sell 53% stake in BPCL.
Topic: State News/ Bihar
2. Bihar government gave permission for exploration of India’s largest gold reserve in Jamui district.
- According to the Geological Survey of India (GSI) survey, around 222.88 million tonnes of the gold reserve is present in the Jamui district.
- The state government can sign an MoU with a central agency or agencies for G3 (preliminary) stage exploration.
- The survey findings indicated the presence of gold in Karmatia, Jhajha and Sono in the Jamui district.
- The State Mines and Geology Department has received proposals from National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) and Mines Exploration Corporation Ltd (MCEL) for gold exploration.
- As per the National Mineral Inventory, as of 1.4.2015, the total resource of primary gold ore is estimated to be 501.83 million tonnes.
- Out of these, 17.22 million tonnes are under the reserves category and the remaining 484.61 million tonnes are under the remaining resources category.
- The largest reserve of gold ore (primary) is present in Bihar (44%), followed by Rajasthan (25%), and Karnataka (21%).
- Karnataka is the largest gold producing state in India. Kolar and Hutti are two major goldfields in Karnataka.
Topic: Important Days
3. World No Tobacco Day 2022: 31 May
- Every year on May 31, World No Tobacco Day is observed.
- It is celebrated in order to raise awareness about the dangers of using tobacco.
- The day's major aim is to raise global awareness about the epidemic of tobacco and the needless death and disease it causes.
- The theme of World No Tobacco Day 2022 is 'Tobacco is killing us and our planet.’
- In 1987, the World Health Assembly started World No Tobacco Day by passing a resolution.
- About 80 to 90% of people with lung cancer have a history of tobacco smoking.
- The nicotine present in tobacco causes cardiovascular and respiratory diseases.
Topic: Summits/ Conferences/ Meetings
4. A ten-day Gen Next Democracy Network program concluded on May 30.
- It was organized by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations.
- During the concluding ceremony, 27 delegates from six countries—Ghana, Bangladesh, Peru, Nepal, Brunei, and Norway—shared their experiences of visiting India.
- During the program, young from democratic countries visit India as part of the Gen Next Democracy Network initiative, where they learn about India's history, culture, and democratic functioning.
- Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR):
- It is an autonomous organization that was founded in 1950 by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.
- It is the governmental organization responsible for cultural and academic engagement with the world.
- It is headquartered in New Delhi. Its Director-General is Kumar Tuhin.
Topic: Space and IT
5. Supercomputer Param Ananta, with a capability of 838 teraflops, installed at IIT Gandhinagar.
- Under the National Supercomputing Mission (NSM), PARAM ANANTA, a state-of-the-art Supercomputer at IIT Gandhinagar, has been dedicated to the nation.
- It is a collaborative initiative of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST).
- The PARAM ANANTA supercomputing facility has been constructed under Phase 2 of the NSM, with the majority of the components used to build this system being made and installed in India.
- It is coupled with an indigenous software stack developed by C-DAC.
- On October 12, 2020, IIT Gandhinagar and the Centre for Development in Advanced Computing (C-DAC) had signed an MoU to develop this 838 TeraFlops Supercomputing Facility under NSM.
- The PARAM ANANTA system uses Direct Contact Liquid Cooling technology to achieve excellent power efficiency while lowering operational costs.
- National Supercomputing Mission (NSM):
- It was launched in 2015. Under NSM, 15 supercomputers with a computing capacity of 24 petaflops will be installed across India.
- In 2019, the first Supercomputer “PARAM Shivay” was designed and built under NSM by C-DAC at the Indian Institute of Technology (BHU), Varanasi.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
6. NCTE launched an online portal to streamline the process of recognizing teacher education programs.
- National Council for Teacher Education has launched portal to streamline the process of recognition of teacher education programs of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and Teacher Education Institutions (TEIs).
- This portal will bring about a paradigm shift in the National Council for Teacher Education's functions.
- The portal's aim is to provide a robust, automated framework that improves accountability, transparency, and simplicity of doing business.
- This portal will be used to process applications for the recently launched four-year Integrated Teacher Education Programs (ITEP).
- National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE):
- It is an Indian government statutory body established in 1995 under the National Council for Teacher Education Act, 1993 to formally monitor standards, and processes in the Indian education system.
- It is headquartered in New Delhi.
- Its chairperson is Dinesh Prasad Saklani.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
7. PM Modi released benefits under PM CARES for Children Scheme on 30 May 2022.
- PM CARES kits were handed over to 6 children in Goa.
- PM CARES kit includes a passbook of PM CARES for Children, and a health card under Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana.
- The objective of the 'PM CARES for Children' Scheme is to ensure comprehensive care and protection of children with the financial support of Rs. 10 lakh upon attaining 23 years of age.
- Ministry of Women and Child Development is the nodal Ministry for its execution at the central level.
- 'PM CARES for Children' Scheme:
- It was launched by PM Modi on 29 May 2021.
- It was launched to help children who have lost both their parents to the Covid-19 pandemic during 11 March 2020 to 28 February 2022.
- It also covers children who have lost legal guardians or adoptive parents to Covid-19 pandemic during 11 March 2020 to 28 February 2022.
- The child should not have completed 18 years of age on the date of death of the parents.
Topic: Reports and Indices
8. As per the RBI survey, Rs 100 denomination banknotes are most preferred by people in India.
- Rs 2,000 denomination banknotes are least preferred as per the RBI survey.
- Among coins, Rs 5 is most preferred and Rs 1 is least preferred.
- At least 7 out of 10 survey respondents were satisfied with the new series of banknotes.
- The watermark of Mahatma Gandhi’s image is the most recognized security feature. It is followed by the windowed security thread.
- Almost 3% of respondents were not aware of any banknote security feature.
- RBI survey included 11,000 respondents. It included 351 visually impaired respondents.
- As per RBI’s annual report for FY22, the value of total Rs 2,000 notes in circulation declined to 13.8%, compared with 17.3% a year ago.
- As a result, RBI has not printed Rs 2,000 currency notes since the financial year 2018-19.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
9. National Health Authority launched an online dashboard for Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission.
- The Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM) public dashboard will display real-time information on the Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission scheme.
- The dashboard will display information about Ayushman Bharat Health Account (ABHA) numbers, Healthcare Professionals Registry (HPR) and Health Facility Registry (HFR).
- Health Facility Registry is a repository of all health facilities in the country.
- The dashboard will also provide information on the number of health facilities like hospitals, laboratories, etc.
- It will also give detail about ABHA (earlier known as health ID) and the number of healthcare professionals like doctors, nurses etc. on national as well as state/ UT levels.
- It will also present a clear picture of the progress made by ABDM ecosystem partners.
- Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM) was launched in August 2020 for developing an integrated digital health infrastructure in the country.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
10. Government will launch a common platform ‘Jan Samarth’ for the delivery of schemes.
- The government will soon launch a common portal 'Jan Samarth' for the delivery of service of schemes run by various ministries and departments.
- It will be launched as part of the government's vision of minimum government and maximum governance.
- Initially, 15 credit-linked government schemes will be linked to the portal.
- The portal aims to bring services of all schemes on a single platform so that beneficiaries can use the service without any hassle.
- The portal will have open architecture enabling state governments and other institutions to also onboard their schemes.
- The government launched a portal in 2018 to give various kinds of credit products, including MSME, home, auto and personal loans.
- The portal gives loans by analysing data of Income Tax returns, GST data, bank statements etc.
Topic: State News/ Goa
11. Goa celebrated its 35th statehood day.
- Goa celebrated its 35th foundation day on 30 May.
- Goa got its full statehood on 30 May 1987. Portuguese ruled over Goa even after 14 years of Independence.
- Goa become independent from the Portuguese on 19th December 1961.
- Goa, along with Daman and Diu was made union territory by the 12th Constitutional Amendment Act 1962.
- Goa is a state in western India, and its coastline stretches along the Arabian Sea.
- It is located on the western coast of the Indian Peninsula. Its main towns are Panaji, Margao, Vasco, Mapusa and Ponda.
- The Chief Minister of the state is Pramod Sawant and Governor P S Sreedharan Pillai.
- The capital of Goa is Panaji.
- The state bird of Goa is Flame Throated Bulbul, State Animal Gaur and State Tree Matti.
Manipur and Tripura
12. Adani Hybrid Energy subsidiary sets up India's first wind-solar hybrid power plant in Jaisalmer.
- Adani Hybrid Energy Jaisalmer One Limited, a subsidiary of Adani Hybrid Energy, commissioned a 390 MW wind-solar hybrid power plant in Jaisalmer.
- It will be India's first integrated wind and solar power hybrid generation plant.
- This new plant has signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).
- The commissioning of this hybrid plant is another step toward achieving India's sustainable energy goals.
- This project is a part of the first construction facility by international banks in Adani Green. Now, AGEL has an operational capacity of 5.8 GW.
- Adani Green Energy Limited: It is an energy company headquartered in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.
Topic: National Appointments
13. Justice Mohanty gets an additional charge of Lokpal chairperson.
- President Ram Nath Kovind has appointed Justice Pradip Kumar Mohanty as Lokpal Chairperson after Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose completed his term.
- Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose is the first Chairperson of the Lokpal.
- Lokpal is a statutory anti-corruption authority or body.
- The Lokpal and Lokayukta Act, 2013 has provided the Lokpal for the Union and the Lokayukta for the states.
- Dr. L. M. Singhvi coined the term Lokpal and Lokayukta.
- Maharashtra is the first state to establish Lokayukta.
- The Lokpal can have eight members and is headed by a chairperson. Currently, there are six members in the Lokpal.
- Lokpal chairperson and members are appointed for a term of five years or until attaining the age of 70 years.
- The chairperson and members of Lokpal are appointed by the President on the recommendations of a selection committee.
Topic: Banking System
14. Public Sector Banks’ profit doubled in financial year 2021-22.
- The combined profit of 12 Public Sector Banks stood at Rs 66,539 crore during the financial year 2021-22, an increase of 110 per cent from the previous year.
- The collective profit of the state-owned banks was Rs 31,816 crore in FY21.
- After many years, all 12 state-owned banks reported net profit.
- The profitability of the Bank has improved after the clean-up of bad loans and the merger of 10 state-owned banks.
- The easy liquidity provided by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and growth segments like retail loans played a key role in increasing the profitability of Banks.
- SBI’s net profit was the highest at Rs 31,675 crore, 55 per cent higher than the previous year.
- Bank of Baroda with a net profit of Rs 7,272 crore is in the second spot, and Canara Bank is in the third position.
- Private banks registered a net profit of over Rs 91,000 crore, which is 29 percent more than the previous year.
- HDFC Bank (Rs 36,961 crore), ICICI Bank (Rs 23,339 crore), and Axis Bank (Rs 13,025 crore) are the top three most profitable banks in the private sector.
- The Bank of Maharashtra recorded less than 1 percent NPA.