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27th July 2022



National News

GoI Designates 5 New Ramsar Sites, taking total number to 54 

Five new wetlands of International importance have been designated in India. With this, the total number of Ramsar sites in the country have been increased from 49 to 54 Ramsar sites.  The new sites are Karikili Bird Sanctuary, Pallikaranai Marsh Reserve Forest & Pichavaram Mangrove in Tamil Nadu, Pala wetland in Mizoram and  Sakhya Sagar in Madhya Pradesh.

International News


Lufthansa cancels 1,000 flights as ground staff plan to walk out

German carrier Deutsche Lufthansa has cancelled 1,000 flights on Wednesday. This includes flights that were supposed to operate to and from Frankfurt and Munich. Lufthansa has taken the decision amidst strikes and staff shortages. Labour Union Verdi, that has demanded 9.5% pay hike for 20,000 employees, called for a walkout on Thursday.

Bulgaria to head for parliamentary polls as coalition talks fail

Bulgaria will head for fresh parliamentary elections later this year, after the country's three largest parties failed to form a coalition government. We Continue the Change party and the GERB party fell out amid soaring tensions with Russia. Bulgaria, which is one of the poorest European countries, has already had three parliamentary elections since April 2021.

Wall Street rises after Alphabet, Microsoft's quarterly results

With Microsoft and Alphabet posting a surge in quarterly results, the investor sentiment at Wall Street was lifted on Wednesday. Alphabet shares rose by 4.5% propelled by Google ad sales, while Microsoft rose by 3.1% following its double-digit fiscal revenue growth forecast. S&P 500 Communication Services index rose for the first time in five days and tech stocks surged 2.8%.

US Federal Reserve hikes interest rates by 0.75% for the 2nd consecutive time

The US Federal Reserve System on Wednesday raised its benchmark interest rate by 0.75% for the second straight time, matching the largest increase since 1994. The move will raise its key rate to a range of 2.25% to 2.5%, its highest level since 2018. This comes after annual inflation in US hit a new four-decade high of 9.1% in June.


Russia decides to leave the International Space Station after 2024 

President Vladimir Putin was informed by the newly appointed head of Moscow's space agency that Russia has made the decision to leave the International Space Station after 2024.  The declaration comes amid heightened hostilities between Moscow and the West over Moscow's military action in Ukraine and several rounds of previously unheard-of sanctions against Russia.  One of the few areas where cooperation between Russia, the United States, and its allies had not been ruined by tensions over Ukraine and other issues up until now was space exploration.  One of the Soviet space program's major achievements and a significant source of national pride in Russia is the launch of the first satellite in 1957 and the sending of the first man into space in 1961.

States News

Prime Minister to lay the cornerstone for the IFSCA’s Gujarat headquarters 

Gujarat’s IFSCA (International Financial Services Centres Authority) Headquarters Building will officially break ground thanks to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. IFSCA is the centralised regulatory body in India’s international financial services centres for the creation and supervision of financial products, financial services, and financial institutions.  As a symbol of the expanding importance and stature of Gujarat International Finance Tec, GIFT as a preeminent international financial centre, the IFSCA headquarters building was designed as an iconic landmark.  The Prime Minister will open India’s first international bullion exchange in GIFT-IFSC, the India International Bullion Exchange.

Kerala will start taking steps to ensure every citizen fully digitally literate

Kerala government has made the decision to start initiatives to promote full digital literacy in the State.  Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan while addressing a school programme in Thiruvananthapuram explained that the campaign aims to educate people, particularly youngsters, about the dangers and traps online.  The post-Covid era, smartphones had become an integral part of everyone's everyday lives and an important instrument for online learning.  Children cannot be kept out of the digital world forever, but the Chief Minister advised raising awareness to protect their safety and security.

Agreements News

To Establish Center of Excellence for MSME, NSIC and LG Electronics sign an agreement

In the presence of Shri Narayan Rane, Honorable Cabinet Minister, Shri Bhanu Pratap Singh Verma, Honorable Minister of State, Shri B. B. Swain, Secretary MSME, Shri P. Udayakumar, CMD, NSIC, and Shailesh Kumar Singh, AS&DC, National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC) signed an agreement with LG Electronics India Pvt Ltd. and the Electronics Sector Skills Council of India (ESSCI).  The goal of this project is to train underprivileged youth in the fields of consumer electronics and appliances.  LG Electronics and the Electronics Sector Skills Council of India (ESSCI) will establish a "Centre of Excellence" at NSIC - Technical Services Center.


Tata Motors' consolidated net loss widens to ₹5,007 cr in Q1

Tata Motors reported a consolidated net loss of ₹5,007 crore in the quarter ended June 2022, the company said in a regulatory filing on Wednesday. The auto major had posted a consolidated net loss of ₹4,451 crore in the corresponding period last fiscal. "We expect demand to remain strong despite worries on inflation and geo-political risks," Tata Motors said.


BPCL's $1.6-bn investment plan in Brazil gets Cabinet's approval

The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved an additional investment of $1.6 billion by state-owned Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) in a Brazilian oil block. The investment will be made by Bharat PetroResources Ltd (BPRL), BPCL's wholly-owned subsidiary, for developing the BM-SEAL-11 Concession Project in Brazil. BPRL has a 40% stake in the block, while Brazil's Petrobras operates at 60%

U'khand govt will ensure implementation of 13 central schemes: CM

Uttarakhand CM Pushkar Singh Dhami on Wednesday said the state government will ensure speedy implementation of the 13 central schemes that are top priority of PM Narendra Modi. "I...will make sure that all the beneficiaries may receive the scheme benefits so that they can have a better life," Dhami said, adding the schemes will be reviewed by the CM's Council.

5G spectrum auction bid exceeds ₹1.49 lakh crore after Day 2

After the second day of India's first-ever 5G spectrum auction, the bid amount has crossed ₹1.49 lakh crore. The government had received spectrum bids worth ₹1.45 lakh crore after the completion of four rounds on the opening day on Tuesday. Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea and Adani Data Networks are participating in the auction.


IMF cuts Indian economic growth forecast by 80 bps to 7.4% 

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has slashed India’s growth forecast for 2022-23 (FY23) by 80 basis points to 7.4 per cent from 8.2%, citing less favourable external conditions and rapid policy tightening by the central bank.  However, despite the growth downgrade, India will remain one of the fastest growing major economies in the world in 2022-23 and 2023-24.  Only Saudi Arabia, estimated to grow 7.6% in 2022, is expected to outpace India. However, growth in the Kingdom is expected to slow to 3.7% in the following year.


Mastercard set to replace Paytm as BCCI title sponsor 

Mastercard is all set to replace Paytm as the title sponsor for all international and domestic cricket matches organised by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). Paytm held the rights till the end of 2023.  Paytm requested BCCI to assign its India Home Cricket title rights to credit card major Mastercard. Paytm had reportedly missed the July deadline to request a reassignment. However, BCCI has been willing to consider its delayed request due to their ‘long standing’ relationship.

Digital payments in India grew 29% annually at March-end 2022: RBI

Digital payments across India grew nearly 29% in a year through March 2022, as per RBI's digital payment index (DPI). The index, which is constructed using March 2018 as its base period, stood at 349.3 in March 2022 against 270.59 in March 2021. "DPI has demonstrated significant growth, representing rapid adoption and deepening of digital payments," RBI said.


RBI approves Piramal Enterprises' establishment of NBFC

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has given the organisation permission to begin conducting business as an NBFC to Piramal Enterprises. The licence is required to start an NBFC that does not accept public deposits. RBI has granted the company a certificate of registration allowing it to start operating as a non-banking financial institution without taking deposits from the general public.

HDFC Bank to be among global top 10 banks after merger 

According to Times of India report, HDFC Bank will be among the world's top 10 most valuable banks after its merger with the parent, mortgage lender Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC), at the current valuations and will also be the first Indian bank to make it to the Top 10 club.  The combined market cap of HDFC Bank and HDFC would be around USD 160 billion.

Ranks and Reports News

World Airport Traffic Dataset 2021: New Delhi among top 20 busiest airports 

The Airports Council International (ACI) World has released the annual World Airport Traffic Dataset to reveal the global air traffic rankings of the top 20 aviation industries for the full year 2021.  Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) has topped the 2021 Ranking with 7.6 crore passengers in terms of passenger footfall in the year 2021.  From India, the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport in New Delhi has been ranked among the top 20, as the 13th busiest airport. IGIA witnessed 3.7 crore passenger footfall in 2021, which is 30.3% more than 2.8 crore in 2020 when IGI was ranked 16th.

Awards News

Professor Kaushik Rajashekara won Global Energy Prize 2022

Indian-origin professor of engineering at the University of Houston, Kaushik Rajashekara has won the prestigious Global Energy Prize.  Rajashekara is joined as a 2022 laureate by Viktor Orlov, chief specialist of the Centre for Innovative Technologies (Rosatom in Russia) and pioneer in thermonuclear physics; and Mercouri Kanatzidis, professor of chemistry and materials science at Northwestern University and senior researcher at the Argonne National Laboratory.  Rajashekara was given the award in the New Ways of Energy Applications category for his contributions to transportation electrification and energy efficiency technologies while reducing power generation emissions. The awarding ceremony will be held during Russian Energy Week in Moscow on October 12-14.

Sports News


PV Sindhu named India's flag-bearer for opening ceremony of CWG 2022

Two-time Olympic medal-winning badminton player PV Sindhu has been named India's flag-bearer for the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games (CWG) 2022 in Birmingham. The opening ceremony will take place tomorrow. The 27-year-old shuttler had won silver medal in women's singles event at the CWG 2018 that was held in Gold Coast.


AR Rahman unveils anthem 'Vanakkam Chennai' for 44th International Chess Olympiad

Grammy and Oscar-winning music composer, AR Rahman has come up with the 'Vanakkam Chennai' (Welcome Anthem) for the upcoming International Chess Olympiad, 2022.  Directed by Vignesh Shivan, the music video features chief minister MK Stalin, grandmaster Vishwanathan Anand, and music maestro AR Rahman, who has composed and sung the theme song.  The music video also features director Shankar’s daughter as a Bharatanatyam artiste. The terrific music video has been praised by netizens for showing the culture of Tamil Nadu impressively.

India will host ICC Women’s ODI World Cup 2025 

International Cricket Council (ICC) has confirmed that India will host the ICC Women’s ODI World Cup 2025. BCCI will leave no stone unturned to make it a memorable event for everyone concerned.  The infrastructure is in place and will have a very successful edition of the World Cup. The hosts were selected via a competitive bidding process overseen by a Board sub-committee chaired by Martin Snedden along with Clare Connor, Sourav Ganguly and Ricky Skerritt.  Bangladesh will host the 2024 Women’s T20 World Cup, while the 2026 edition will be held in England.  Sri Lanka has secured hosting rights for the Women’s T20 Champions Trophy, slated for 2027, provided it qualifies for the event.

Swiss Open 2022: Casper Ruud defeats Matteo Berrettini in the finals 

Norway’s Casper Ruud has won the Swiss Open Tennis Tournament 2022 held in Gstaad, Switzerland. He defeated Italy’s Matteo Berrettini in the final by 4-6, 7-6(4), 6-2. It was Ruud’s 9th Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) title.  The Swiss Open is Ruud’s 3rd title in 2022, the other two titles are Buenos Aires and Geneva Open. Ruud had also won the 2021 Swiss Open title.

Important Days

International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem 2022 

International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem is observed every year on July 26. The day is observed to raise awareness of the importance of mangrove ecosystems as “a unique, special and vulnerable ecosystem” and to promote solutions for their sustainable management, conservation and uses.  The UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization's (UNESCO) General Conference established the day in 2015. On this day in 1998, a Greenpeace worker named Hayhow Daniel Nanoto passed away from a heart attack while participating in a sizeable demonstration to restore the mangrove wetlands in Muisne, Ecuador.

Miscellaneous News

In Bhopal, Delhi Airport, Kandla Port, and Bengaluru Metro, TRAI testing 5G 

5G spectrum auctions are currently taking place in India. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has stated that it has begun pilot testing the 5G network at selected areas around the nation in advance of the spectrum auction. TRAI has been testing the 5G network at four different sites around the nation.  These places are Namma Metro in Bengaluru, Namma Port Kandla near Kutch in Gujarat, Bhopal Smart City, GMR International Airport in New Delhi, and Bhopal Smart City.  Bhopal, pilot testing was done at eleven different places. As a result, Bhopal is the first smart city in India to test the functionality of street furniture such as traffic signal poles, street light poles, smart poles, billboards, direction boards, road signage, foot over bridges, and city bus shelters on 5G networks.  The Deendayal Port in Kandla near Kutch and AGMR International Airport in New Delhi have now been designated as the nation’s first port and airport, respectively, to test 5G readiness.  Bengaluru’s Namma Metro has become the nation’s first metro rail system to test 5G readiness.
The MG Road Metro station in Nama Metro Bengaluru was chosen as the primary station to focus on 5G coverage at street level, in its concourse area, platform, and tracks on both sides.

Former Assam minister Ardhendu Dey dies aged 84

Former Assam minister Ardhendu Kumar Dey died at a hospital on Wednesday following a brief illness, his family said. The 84-year-old former Congress minister was undergoing treatment at Gauhati Medical College and Hospital, they added. His mortal remains were taken to his residence at Hojai, where the last rites were performed. Dey was first elected as Hojai MLA in 1991.



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