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March 31 | Daily Current Affairs 2021
Table of Contents
1. International Transgender Day of Visibility is observed on which date?
A) March 30
B) March 31
C) March 25
D) March 27
E) March 29
Answer: B) March 31
- International Transgender Day of Visibility is an annual event occurring on March 31 dedicated to celebrating transgender people and raising awareness of discrimination faced by transgender people worldwide, as well as a celebration of their contributions to society.
- The day was founded by US-based transgender activist Rachel Crandall of Michigan in 2009 as a reaction to the lack of LGBT recognition of transgender people, citing the frustration that the only well-known transgender-centered day was the Transgender Day of Remembrance, which mourned the murders of transgender people, but did not acknowledge and celebrate living members of the transgender community.
- The first International Transgender Day of Visibility was held on March 31, 2009.
- It has since been spearheaded by the U.S.-based youth advocacy organization Trans Student Educational Resources.
2. Who won Bahrain Grand Prix?
A) Sergio Pérez
B) Lando Norris
C) Lewis Hamilton
D) Max Verstappen
E) Valtteri Bottas
Answer: C) Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton – Bahrain Grand Prix.
3. What is the rank of India in the list of WEF Global Gender Gap Report 2021?
Answer: A) 140
- India’s ranking on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index 2021 dropped 28 places to 140, amongst 156 nations, making it the third-worst performer in South Asia, way behind Bangladesh and Nepal.
- The Global Gender Gap Index benchmarks the evolution of gender-based gaps among four key dimensions – economic participation and opportunity, educational attainment, health and survival, and political empowerment – and tracks progress towards closing these gaps over time.
- Iceland continued to top the index in 2021, followed by Finland and Norway, while Afghanistan was at the last position of 156.
- In South Asia, Bangladesh was the top performer on the gender gap index with a global ranking of 65, followed by Nepal at 106, Sri Lanka at 116, and Bhutan at 130.
- Apart from Afghanistan, Pakistan was the only country behind India on the index with a global ranking of 153.
BANKING AND FINANCE
4. Reserve Bank of India extended the timeline for processing recurring online transactions by how many months?
Answer: B) 6
- In a huge relief for banks, Reserve Bank of India extended the timeline for processing recurring online transactions by 6 months to September 30, 2021.
- Come April there were supposed to be no automatic recurring payment for various services, including recharge and utility bill, as RBI has made Additional Factor of Authentication (AFA) mandatory after March.
- However, banks and payment gateways had sought additional time to comply with the RBI directive on automatic recurring payment.
- On December 4, RBI had directed all banks including RRBs, NBFCs, and payment gateways that the processing of recurring transactions (domestic or cross-border) using cards or Prepaid Payment Instruments (PPIs) or Unified Payments Interface (UPI) under arrangements/practices not compliant with AFA would not be continued beyond March 31, 2021.
- As part of risk mitigation measure, RBI announced this step to bolster safety and security of card transactions.
- Non-readiness of some of the players could have impacted recurring payment such as of utility bills, recharge of phone, DTH and OTT, among others, post March 31.
- Recently, RBI enhanced the limit for contactless card transactions and e-mandates for recurring transactions through cards (and UPI) from Rs 2,000 to Rs 5,000 from January 1, 2021 with a view to further the adoption of digital payments in a safe and secure manner.
Reserve Bank of India:
Act: Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Governor– Shaktikanta Das
Deputy Governors– 4 (Bibhu Prasad Kanungo, Mahesh Kumar Jain, Michael Debabrata Patra, M. Rajeshwar Rao)
RBI – Extend deadline for processing auto-debit payments by 6 months.
5. State Bank of India has raised how much amount from Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) to extend loans to supply chain of Japanese automobile industry in India?
A) $2 billion
B) $3 billion
C) $4 billion
D) $5 billion
E) $1 billion
Answer: E) $1 billion
- Country’s largest lender, State Bank of India, has raised $1 billion from Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) to extend loans to supply chain of Japanese automobile industry in India.
- SBI signed a loan agreement with JBIC, taking the total facility to $2 billion.
- It has inked similar agreement for $1 billion in October 2020, SBI said in a statement.
- Bank did not disclose terms of agreement including tenure and interest charged for loan facility.
- The loan is in the form of refinance against the funding support provided to the manufacturers, suppliers and dealers of Japanese automobiles in India.
- These businesses are recovering from reduced sales of automobiles due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The financing will assist the Government of India’s ‘Make in India’ initiative
JBIC is a policy-based financial institution, wholly owned by the Japanese government, with the objective of contributing to the sound development of Japan, the international economy and society.
State Bank of India:
Capital: Mumbai, Maharashtra
Head: Dinesh Kumar Khara
Tagline: With You all the way, Pure Banking Nothing Else, The Nation Bank on Us, The Banker to Every Indian, A Bank of the Common Man
SBI – Ink $1-bn loan agreement with Japan Bank for International Cooperation.
6. Maruti Suzuki teams up with which Bank for car loans?
A) Bandhan Bank
B) Indusind Bank
C) ICICI Bank
D) HDFC Bank
E) Karnataka Bank
Answer: E) Karnataka Bank
- We have some interesting news, especially for those folks who plan to buy a Maruti Suzuki car in India any time soon.
- The automaker has announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Karnataka Bank, a Mangaluru-based private sector lender, to offer attractive car finance options.
- Under the purview of this tie-up, people buying a Maruti Suzuki car will be able to avail this car loan offer across 858 branches of Karnataka Bank all over India.
Maruti Suzuki and Karnataka Bank car loan offer:
- Now, let’s take a close look at some of the key details of the new auto finance offer:
- Customers will be able to avail car loans of up to 85 per cent of the on-road price.
- The offers is applicable on all new Maruti Suzuki cars, i.e. the ones retailed via cars ARENA and NEXA showrooms.
- The car loan offer includes an interest rate linked to the external benchmark lending rate.
- Customers opting for this car loan offer will be able to choose tenures of up to 84 months.
Hq: Mangaluru, Karnataka
MD and CEO: Mahabaleshwara M.S
Tagline: Your Family Bank across India
CEO: Kenichi Ayukawa
Founded: 1982, Gurugram
Maruti Suzuki + Karnataka Bank – Car loans.
BUSINESS AND ECONOMY
7. Which company is the first Indian company to buy Guyanese crude Liza?
Answer: C) HPCL-Mittal
- The first cargo from new oil producer Guyana to the world’s third-largest crude importer, India, departed this month from a production facility off the South American nation’s coast in a vessel chartered by trading firm Trafigura, data from Refinitiv Eikon.
- HPCL-Mittal Energy Ltd, a joint venture between state-run Hindustan Petroleum Corp and steel tycoon LN Mittal, a source with knowledge of the matter said. HMEL operates a 226,000 barrel per day (bpd) Bathinda refinery in the northern state of Punjab.
HPCL-Mittal – The first Indian company to buy Guyanese crude Liza.
BOOKS AND AUTHORS
8. The Demoness – The Best Bangladeshi Stories, 1971-2021 is published by whom?
A) Random House
D) Simon & Schuster
E) Aleph Book Company
Answer: E) Aleph Book Company
- A new book has brought together some of the finest fiction stories from Bangladeshi authors as the country celebrates 50 years of its independence.
- The Demoness – The Best Bangladeshi Stories, 1971-2021 has 27 such stories in English including Kazi Nazrul Islam’s masterpiece The Demoness, Akhtaruzzaman Elias’s The Raincoat and Shawkat Ali’s The Final Resting Place.
- Niaz Zaman has selected and edited the stories in the book, published by Aleph Book Company.
Mark Messier book on leadership, teamwork coming in October:
- Hockey great Mark Messier wants fans to know he had a lot of help on his path to the NHL Hall of Fame.
- Messier’s memoir No One Wins Alone will be published in October by Gallery Books, a Simon & Schuster imprint. Messier, 60, will write about being the son of a hockey player and coach, Doug Messier; a teammate of Wayne Gretzky on the Edmonton Oilers; and captain of the New York Rangers, among other highlights.
- The book will be released in Messier’s native Canada by Simon & Schuster Canada.
- Name Place Animal Thing is authored by Daribha Lyndem published by Zubaan.
- I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and was Shot by the Taliban is an autobiographical book by Malala Yousafzai, co-written with Christina Lamb.
- It was published on 8 October 2013, by Weidenfeld & Nicolson in the UK and Little, Brown and Company in the US.
The Demoness – The Best Bangladeshi Stories, 1971-2021 – Published by Aleph Book Company.
9. Subhash Kumar is appointed as CMD of which organisation?
Answer: D) ONGC
- Subhash Kumar, Director (Finance) at Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), is tipped to take additional charge as Chairman and Managing Director of the company as incumbent CMD Shashi Shanker attains superannuation.
Oil and Natural Gas Corporation:
Headquarters: Vasant Kunj, Delhi
CEO: Shashi Shanker
Founded: 14 August 1956
Subhash Kumar – Take additional charge as ONGC CMD.
10. Who was selected for the 2020 Saraswati Samman?
A) Kumar Limbale
B) Chand Limbale
C) Suresh Limbale
D) Sharankumar Limbale
E) Sakthi Limbale
Answer: D) Sharankumar Limbale
- Marathi novelist, poet, critic and short story writer Sharankumar Limbale was selected for the 2020 Saraswati Samman, a prestigious literary recognition conferred annually by the KK Birla Foundation.
- The 30th edition of the prize, the highest recognition in the field of Indian literature in the country, was given to Limbale for his 2018 Marathi novel, Sanatan.
- Apart from the citation, the award carries a plaque and an award money of ₹15 lakh.
- Instituted in 1991, the Saraswati Samman is given every year to an outstanding literary work written in any Indian language mentioned in Schedule VIII to the Constitution by an Indian citizen published during the 10 years preceding the specified year.
- Previous recipients include poet Harivansh Rai Bachchan, playwright Vijay Tendulkar and novelist Sunil Gangopadhyay.
- Besides the Saraswati Samman, two other awards – the Vyas Samman (for Hindi works by Indian citizens) and Bihari Puraskar (for Hindi/Rajasthani works by Rajasthani writers) — have been instituted by the KK Birla Foundation.
Novelist Sharankumar Limbale – Saraswati Samman ’20.
11. Which state is set to become the country’s first state to have two green energy efficient towns in Rajgir and Bodh Gaya?
A) Andhra Pradesh
D) Uttar Pradesh
Answer: E) Bihar
- If everything goes as per plan, Bihar is set to become the country’s first state to have two green energy efficient towns in Rajgir and Bodh Gaya.
- The towns will start getting solar energy through the first of its kind renewable energy project from 2023.
- After Rajgir and Bodh Gaya, Patna’s many important government offices including the governor house, the Patna High Court, the Bihar Museum and the Vidhyut Bhawan would also get round the clock green energy supply being developed with the help of the Solar Energy Corporation of India.
- To implement this poject, the state government has decided to use the land available in Lakhisarai and Bhagalpur district to construct solar energy plants.
- Confirming this, Bihar’s secretary of energy Sanjeev Hans said that the 500-megawatt solar energy plants will be set up at Lakhisarai and Bhagalpur.
- He also said that the excess solar energy generated through the proposed plants will also be used to run the turbines for water supply and other power-driven works.
CM: Nitish Kumar
Governor: Phagu Chauhan
Bihar – First state to have two green towns.
12. Centre approves how much amount PLI scheme for food processing sector?
A) Rs 10,900 cr
B) Rs 14,900 cr
C) Rs 13,900 cr
D) Rs 12,900 cr
E) Rs 11,900 cr
Answer: A) Rs 10,900 cr
- The government approved a Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for the food processing sector, entailing an outlay of Rs 10,900 crore.
- The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved the scheme which will help create 2.5 lakh jobs, boost exports and ensure availability of a wider range of value-added products for consumers.
Govt extends Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme
to June 30:
- The government has extended the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) by another three months, and widened its scope to issue additional funding up to 40 per cent of outstanding loans as on Feb 29, 2020 as against 20 per cent earlier.
- The scheme, dubbed as ECLGS 3.0, has been extended until June 30, or until Rs 3 trillion is disbursed, due to continuing adverse impact of Covid-19 pandemic on certain services sector.
- The collateral free loan guarantee scheme, announced as a part of the Atmanirbhar Bharat package, would now also cover borrowers with total credit outstanding up to Rs 500 crore, with overdues for 60 days or less on February 29 as compared to 30 days overdue earlier.
- The tenor of loans granted under ECLGS 3.0 will be 6 years including moratorium period of 2 years.
- The tenor of loans under the previous version, ECLGS 2.0, was five years with a 12-month moratorium on repayment of principal.
- The government has incurred an expense of Rs 4,000 crore to provide guarantee on 91.9 lakh loans amounting to Rs 2.01 trillion as on March 15.
Centre – Rs 10,900 cr PLI scheme for food processing sector.
13. Which organisation has revamped its IEM portal offering single IEM for one company that would capture the details of all its locations and sectors?
Answer: A) DPIIT
- The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) has revamped its Industrial Entrepreneurs Memorandum (IEM) portal offering single IEM for one company that would capture the details of all its locations and sectors.
- This has been done with a view to enhancing ease of doing business and transparency.
- DPIIT operates the G2B Portal for receiving application of Industrial Entrepreneurs to file an IEM under Industries (Development and Regulation) Act, 1951.
DPIIT – Revamp IEM portal to enhance ease of doing business.
14. Which Minister flags off Field Work of All India Survey on Migrant Workers and the AQEES?
A) Women and Child Development Minister
B) Health Minister
C) Home Minister
D) Finance Minister
E) Labour Minister
Answer: E) Labour Minister
- Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Union Minister of State for Labour & Employment flagged off the field work of the two surveys, All India Surveys on Migrant workers and the
All-India Quarterly Establishment based Employment Survey (AQEES) here.
- These are two of the five All India Surveys that Labour Bureau an attached office of the Ministry is going to conduct this year.
- The Minister had launched the software applications for these surveys at Chandigarh in February this year.
- As a precursor to the launch of field work, the Bureau had also been conducting focused training programs for master trainers and supervisors for these surveys in the past two months.
- On a similar vein the Migrant Worker Survey is the first focused survey on studying the socio economic and working conditions of migrant workers, it will also assess the impact of COVID19 on migrant workers in India.
Ministers of State Independent Charge of Labour and Employment:
Minister: Santosh Kumar Gangwar
Constituency: Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh
Labour Minister – Field Work of All India Survey on Migrant Workers and the AQEES.
15. Which Airport becomes first in south India to have operational parallel runways?
A) Chennai International Airport
B) Bengaluru International Airport
C) Kolkata International Airport
D) Bengaluru International Airport
E) Kerala International Airport
Answer: D) Bengaluru International Airport
- With the successful touchdown of an IndiGo flight from Lucknow at the refurbished north runway, Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) in Bengaluru became the first in south India to have operational parallel runways.
- It also marked the resumption of flight operations from the north runway, which was closed for renovation and upgrades in June 2020.
Bengaluru’s Kempegowda airport – First in south India to have operational parallel runways.