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24th June 2022


National News


Tapan Deka made IB chief, RAW chief Goel's tenure extended by 1 yr

Senior IPS officer Tapan Kumar Deka was on Friday appointed the Intelligence Bureau chief, replacing Arvind Kumar whose extended tenure ends on June 30. Notably, the tenure of Samant Goel, who has been heading the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), has been extended by another year. Previously, Deka was handling the operations wing of the IB.

Who is Parameswaran Iyer, the retired IAS officer appointed as NITI Aayog CEO?

Parameswaran Iyer, who has been appointed NITI Aayog's next CEO, voluntarily retired from IAS to join the World Bank in 2009. In 2016, PM Narendra Modi chose Iyer to lead the flagship Swachh Bharat Mission. The 63-year-old resigned from his post at Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation in 2020 and returned to US to join the World Bank.



Culture Minister G Kishan Reddy launched “Jyotirgamaya” festival in New Delhi 

Jyotirgamaya, a festival celebrating the brilliance of underappreciated performers, was launched in New Delhi by Union Culture Minister G. Kishan Reddy.  Sangeet Natak Akademi organised this festival as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav and on the occasion of World Music Day to highlight the talent of rare musical instruments from all across the country, including street performers and train entertainers.  The festival aims to raise awareness among attendees of the need of preserving both the production and playing of rare musical instruments. Sangeet Natak Akademi's effort to save India's vanishing performing arts is unique.

PM Narendra Modi to inaugurate Vanijya Bhawan and the NIRYAT Site 

The new office complex for the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, "Vanijya Bhawan," and the "National Import-Export Record for Yearly Analysis of Trade" (NIRYAT) portal, which will provide data on India's international trade, will both be officially inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.  The department of commerce and the department for the promotion of industry and internal trade will both use the facility, which will serve as an integrated and contemporary office complex.  As a "one-stop platform," NIRYAT has been created to provide stakeholders with access to all the information they require regarding the country's international commerce.

IOC unveils indoor solar cook top Surya Nutan 

Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has unveiled its patented indigenous solar cook top, "Surya Nutan", developed by the oil refiner’s Faridabad R&D centre.  Surya Nutan will aid in reducing India’s CO 2 emissions drastically and keep our citizens insulated from the vagaries of the high international fossil fuel prices.  The solar cook top is a stationary, rechargeable and kitchen-connected indoor solar cooking system. It offers an online cooking mode while charging.

Uttarakhand: Project to boost rain-fed agriculture approved by World Bank 

In order to advance rain-fed agriculture in the steep areas of Uttarakhand, the World Bank has approved a project costing Rs. 1,000 crore. The watershed department will carry out the Uttarakhand Climate Responsive Rain-fed Farming Project.  The initiative, which aims to lower greenhouse gas emissions, was offered to the World Bank for funding by the State government.

Ranjit Bajaj named as chairman of the Advisory Committee overseeing AIFF 

Entrepreneur Ranjit Bajaj has been named chairman of advisory committee to assist the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) which is running the day-to-day affairs of All India Football Federation (AIFF).  Bajaj, who owned former I-League club Minerva Punjab before it was sold to RoundGlass in 2020, will be the chairman of the advisory committee and integrity matters.

Dr D J Pandian appointed to lead NDB's India Regional Office in Gift City 

Shanghai-headquartered New Development Bank (NDB) of the BRICS countries has appointed former bureaucrat Dr D J Pandian as the Director-General of its India Regional Office in Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City), the bank announced.  Pandian earlier served as the Vice President and Chief Investment Officer of the Beijing-based Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in which India is the 2nd largest shareholder after China.

P Udayakumar begins office as NSIC's Chairman and Managing Director 

P Udayakumar, Director (Plng and Mktg), NSIC, took additional responsibility as CMD NSIC with effect from 20 June 2022. He has a mechanical engineering degree from College of Engineering in Guindy, a postgraduate degree from IIM Bangalore, and 12 years of service on the Board.  The NSIC has been trying to support, encourage, and promote the growth of micro, small, and medium-sized businesses across the nation.  NSIC functions through a network of offices and technical centres spread throughout the nation.

First India-Nepal Bharat Gaurav tourist train flagged off

First Bharat Gaurav tourist train connecting places associated with the Ramayana Circuit in India and Nepal was flagged off from the Safdarjung Railway Station in New Delhi.  The Bharat Gaurav train carrying 500 tourists from India will arrive at the Janakpur Dham railway station in Nepal.  The Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation’s (IRCTC) 18-day Shri Ramayana Yatra special tourist train will take pilgrims to sacred places associated with the life of Lord Ram.  Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw along with Minister of Tourism and Culture G. Kishan Reddy flagged off the train.

Union Minister Piyush Goyal inaugurates Mango Festival in Belgium 

Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, inaugurated a "Mango Festival" in Brussels, Belgium to raise awareness among Europeans and establish a market for Indian mangoes in Europe.  India is a big supplier of mangoes to the rest of the globe, but most of the mangoes end up in the Middle East rather than Europe.  During the event, mangoes like Banganapalli from Andhra Pradesh, Malihabad Dasheri from Uttar Pradesh, Amrapali from Odisha, Lakshman Bhog, Himsagar, Jardalu mango, Langra mangoes, as well as 12 GI-tagged items were on exhibit.

Gujarat CM Bhupendra Patel launches 17th ‘Shala Praveshotsav’ 

In Gujarat, the Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel has launched the 17th ‘Shala Praveshotsav’, the drive to enrol students in primary schools in the state.  The three-day enrollment drive begins from Memadpur primary school in Vadgam taluka of Banaskantha district.  According to official sources, the state officials including IAS and IPS officers and Members of Parliament and Members of Legislative Assembly will visit different schools of the state and enrol children in Class I.


US Supreme Court overturns ruling recognising women's abortion rights

The US Supreme Court on Friday overturned a landmark ruling that legalised abortions, recognising women's legal rights to abort. It upheld a Mississippi state law that bans abortion after 15 weeks. A draft version of the ruling, which had indicated that the court would overturn the abortion rights ruling, was leaked in May 2022, sparking a row in the US.



Deadline for tokenisation of debit and credit cards extended to September 30

The RBI has extended the deadline to tokenise debit and credit cards by three months to September 30, 2022. It said that the number of transactions processed using tokens is yet to gain traction. The central bank added that an alternate system where cardholders enter the card details manually at the time of transaction hasn't been implemented by industry stakeholders.

Rupee closes at record low against US dollar for 3rd day in a row, reaches 78.33

The Indian rupee slipped by 1 paisa to close provisionally at a new all-time low of 78.33 against the US dollar on Friday. The rupee initially gained during opening trade on Friday, but ended the day at a new low, marking the third consecutive day of record low closes. On Thursday, rupee settled at record low of 78.32 against dollar.

What are the new rules for TDS on freebies for social media influencers & others?

Social media influencers and doctors are among those who will have to pay 10% Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) on freebies they get for sales promotions, as per new government guidelines. The TDS, applicable from July 1 onwards, will apply to freebies retained by the persons. TDS will not apply if the benefits availed don't exceed ₹20,000 in a year.


Zomato acquires Blinkit for ₹4,447 crore in an all-stock deal

Homegrown food delivery startup Zomato's board on Friday approved the acquisition of quick commerce company Blinkit, formerly known as Grofers, for ₹4,447 crore in an all-stock deal. Prior to the acquisition, Zomato held a more than 9% stake in the startup. Notably, Blinkit became a unicorn after Zomato invested $100 million last year at a valuation of over $1 billion

Karnataka Bank launches "V-CIP" for account opening 

Karnataka Bank has launched online savings bank (SB) account opening facility through ‘Video-based Customer Identification Process (V-CIP)’.  The facility enabled in the corporate website of the bank, empowers prospective customers to open an SB account through online process and complete KYC (know your customer) verification through a video call at their place of convenience.

South Indian Bank launches "SIB TF Online" EXIM trade portal 

South Indian Bank has launched a new portal called ‘SIB TF Online’ for its corporate EXIM customers. The portal facilitates a platform for trade-related payments to foreign entities remotely.  The customer can initiate the payment request over SIB TF Online after uploading the relevant supporting documents for the transaction.  SIB TF Online is yet another accomplishment by the bank to make its operations more tech-driven. It comes close on the heels of launching the internet banking facility targeting retail savings and NRE SB customers to initiate foreign remittances without visiting the branch.

Freo partners with Equitas Small Finance Bank to launch digital savings account 

Bengaluru-based neobanking platform Freo has launched its digital savings account ‘Freo Save’ in partnership with Equitas Small Finance Bank.  With this launch, it has become the first consumer neobank in the country to provide full-stack neo-banking products, including smart savings account, credit and payments products, cards and wealth-growth products.  The neobank is planning to open one million new accounts in the next ten months.



RBI delays implementation of provisions for issuing credit and debit cards 

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) extended the deadline for implementing a number of the master directives it issued on the issuance of debit cards and credit cards. by three months, from July 1, 2022 to October 1, 2022.  The following Master Direction provisions will now go into effect on October 1, 2022 the central bank announced in a circular. This decision was made after taking into account various comments from industry stakeholders.

Government department will work with SBI, to establish an integrated pension platform 

In order to improve the quality of life for seniors, the State Bank of India (SBI) and the Department of Pension & Pensioners Welfare (DoPPW) of the Centre will work together to develop an integrated pension platform.  SBI field employees were given sessions on pension policy reforms and digitization relating the disbursement of pensions to central government pensioners at a two-day banker's awareness event in Udaipur, Rajasthan.   To cover the entire nation, four such awareness campaigns would be carried out in partnership with the State Bank of India.  According to a statement from the ministry of personnel, public complaints, and pensions, special sessions on income tax issues pertaining to pensioners were organized, and they were also informed about the digital methods of presenting annual life certificates.

‘Vivatech 2020’ Conference: India recognized as ‘country of the year’

Europe’s biggest startup conference, "Vivatech 2020" has recognized India as the “country of the year.” It is a tremendous honour for India to be named “country of the year” in Vivatech 2020.  This is due to the contribution of the Indian startups to the world. This is the recognition of Indian startups.  Minister of Railways, Communications, Electronics and Information Technology, Ashwini Vaishnaw inaugurated the India pavilion at the technology exhibition Vivatech 2020, held in Paris, France. Around 65 start-ups from India are participating in Vivatech 2022 with government support.

14th BRICS Summit: Members of BRICS take a similar stance on world economy 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at a virtual summit of the five-nation grouping sponsored by China that the consequences of the Covid epidemic on the global economy are still apparent and that cooperation among the BRICS countries can be a beneficial part of its recovery.  The BRICS member nations, according to the prime minister, share a similar approach to managing the world economy.  Presidents Xi Jinping of China, Vladimir Putin of Russia, Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil, and Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa were present as Modi delivered the statements.

Union Minister Prahlad Singh Patel inaugurates the National Conference On Millets

Union Minister of State for M/o Food Processing Industries, Prahlad Singh Patel has inaugurated the National Conference on Millets.  The theme of the conference is ‘The Future Super Food for India’ in New Delhi, organised by industry body ASSOCHAM with the support of M/o Food Processing Industries.  The conference has been organised to discuss opportunities and challenges in ensuring food and nutritional security.  The major millets producing states in India include Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.

Ranks and Reports News

Ookla Speedtest Global Index: India ranked 115th 

The Speedtest Global Index released by network intelligence and connectivity insights provider Ookla showed that India recorded 14.28 Mbps median mobile download speeds in the month of May, slightly better than 14.19 Mbps in April 2022.  With this, the country is now three notches up in its global ranking and is at 115th position.   Norway and Singapore are on the top spots for global mobile speeds (median download speed of 129.40 Mbps) and fixed broadband speeds (209.21 Mbps).  The African countries, namely Cote d'Ivoire and Gabon and Congo registered the highest growth in mobile download speeds and fixed broadband speeds respectively in the month of May, the report showed.

World Gold Council Report: India ranked 4th in global gold recycling 

According to World Gold Council Report, India has emerged as the 4th largest recycler in the world and country has recycled 75 tonnes in 2021.  According to the WGC report titled 'Gold refining and recycling', China topped the global gold recycling chart as it recycled 168 tonnes of the yellow metal, followed by Italy in the second position with 80 tonnes and the US in the third rank with 78 tonnes in 2021.  According to the WGC report titled 'Gold refining and recycling' from 300 tonnes in 2013, India's gold refining capacity increased by 1,500 tonnes (500 per cent) in 2021.

Defence News

"BRO Cafes" to be established at 75 border areas in 12 states and UTs, Defense Ministry Approved 

The Border Roads Organization will build 75 outlets along various route segments in 12 states and union territories under the name "BRO Cafes," as permitted by the Ministry of Defense.  These are designed to offer fundamental comforts and amenities to visitors, increase economic activity in border regions, and create jobs for the local population.  The BRO, by virtue of its presence, took it upon itself to open such facilities in remote locations, as the inaccessibility and remoteness of these routes prevent widespread commercial deployments, declared the ministry.  The Ministry of Defense has approved setting up wayside amenities at 75 locations in 12 states/Union territories on various sections of roads with the Border Roads Organization (BRO). These amenities will be known as "BRO Cafes."

Science and Technology News

Oracle introduced OCI dedicated region for Indian market

US-based technology major Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI), Oracle’s cloud services platform, has introduced the ‘OCI dedicated region’ for the Indian market. It will enable customers to leverage public cloud services on their premises while meeting strict latency, data residency, and data sovereignty requirements.  According to the company, the OCI dedicated region requires 60-75 per cent less data centre space and power on average, with a significantly lower entry price of around $1 million a year for a typical customer.

Sports News

India jump two spots to 104 in FIFA rankings 

The Indian football team reaped a good harvest of its impressive Asian Cup qualification campaign as it gained two places to jump to 104th in the latest FIFA world rankings released.  The Blue Tigers are placed just below New Zealand (103), who missed out on a 2022 FIFA World Cup spot after losing 0-1 to Costa Rica in the intercontinental play-off earlier this month. India’s ranking among Asian Football Confederation (AFC) members, however, still remained static at 19th place.  Brazil remained on top, three months after taking the top spot from Belgium (2nd).  Argentina jumped one place to third at the expense of France (4th) who paid the price for four winless games in the UEFA Nations League.

Miscellaneous News


Delhi airport becomes India’s first to run entirely on hydro and solar energy

Delhi Airport or Indira Gandhi International Airport has become the first airport in the country to run entirely on hydro and solar power from this month in a major step toward achieving the ambitious goal of becoming a Net Zero Carbon Emission Airport by 2030.  Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL), a GMR Infrastructure Limited-led consortium, which manages and operates the Delhi Airport, has signed a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) with a Himachal Pradesh-based hydropower producing company for the supply of hydroelectricity for the airport until 2036. 




Actor Raimohan Parida found dead at his residence in Odisha, suicide suspected

Veteran Odia film and theatre artiste Raimohan Parida was found dead aged 58 at his residence in Bhubaneswar on Friday, police said. Prima facie, it seems to be a suicide case but further investigation is underway, a police officer said, adding the body will be sent for post-mortem. He had acted in over 100 Odia films and 15 Bengali movies.



Important Days

United Nations Public Service Day celebrates on 23 June 

With the aim to appreciate the value of public institutions and public servants, June 23 is observed as United Nations Public Service Day. It highlights the contribution and role of public service in the development of all sectors around the world.  The theme for this year's event is “Building back better from COVID-19: Enhancing innovative partnerships to meet the Sustainable Development Goals.”  The origin of the UN Public Service day goes back to December 20, 2002, when the General Assembly selected June 23 as Public Service Day after adopting a resolution 57/277.


International Olympic Day celebrates on 23rd June 

International Olympic Day is celebrated on June 23rd across the globe. The day is primarily celebrated to commemorate the birth of modern Olympic games.  The day is also observed to celebrate the health and harmony aspect associated with sports. The day marks the foundation of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).  This year, the theme for the International Olympic Day is “Together For A Peaceful World.”

International Widows’ Day celebrates on 23rd June 

International Widows' Day is observed across the world on 23 June. The day aims to gather support for widows and to spread awareness about their situation.  For several women, the hurtful loss of a partner is magnified by a long-term struggle for their basic rights and dignity.  This year's theme is - “Sustainable Solutions for Widows Financial Independence”.  June 23 was chosen as the day to mark International Widows' day as it was on this day in 1954 that Shrimati Pushpa Wati Loomba, mother of Lord Loomba, became a widow. 



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