Daily Current Affairs January 2023| GK for Bank exams preparation and other competitive exams

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CURRENT AFFAIRS BOOSTER : 19TH JANUARY 2023



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Current Affairs

19th January 2023

Top 21 Daily Current Affairs: National & International News:

Here is the Current Affairs 19th January 2023 covering the following news headlines: National Disaster Response Force day, Hashim Amla, Global Fire Power Index, World Economic Forum Centre, Think-20 summit.

 

National News

 

1. PM Modi Inaugurated Second Phase of Sansad Khel Mahakumbh 2022-23

·      Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the second phase of Saansad Khel Mahakumbh 2022-23 via video conferencing. Saansad Khel Mahakumbh 2022-23 has been organized in Basti district, Uttar Pradesh by Harish Dwivedi, Member of Parliament from Basti since 2021.

·      The Khel Mahakumbh includes various competitions in both indoor and outdoor sports like wrestling, kabaddi, kho kho, basketball, football, hockey, volleyball, handball, chess, carrom, badminton, table tennis, etc. There are several other competitions including essay writing, painting, rangoli making, etc are also organized during the Khel Mahakumbh.

·      Prime Minister Narendra Modi has noted that Basti is the pious land of Maharishi Vashist which is made up of labor and meditation, asceticism, and renunciation.

 

International News

 

2. New Zealand’s PM Jacinda Ardern announces resignation

·      New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, a global figurehead of progressive politics, shocked the country. She was re-elected for a second term in 2020, the victory buoyed by her government’s “go hard and go early” approach to the Covid-19 pandemic, which saw New Zealand impose some of the world’s strictest border rules, separating families and shutting out almost all foreigners for almost two years.

·      Ardern won international acclaim for her empathetic handling of the 2019 Christchurch mosque massacre, in which 51 Muslim worshippers were killed and another 40 wounded.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams: 

·      New Zealand Capital: Wellington;

·      New Zealand Currency : New Zealand dollar.

 

3. Pakistan is South Asia’s Weakest Economy, World Bank report

·      World Bank forecast Pakistan’s economic growth to slow further to two percent during the current year. This will mark a drop of two percentage points from its June 2022 estimates, according to the World Bank’s Global Economic Prospects report.

·      The report said that Pakistan’s economic output was not only declining itself but also bringing down the regional growth rate as well. Forecasting Pakistan’s GDP growth rate to improve to 3.2 per cent in 2024, the report said, “Policy uncertainty further complicates the economic outlook” of Pakistan.

·      This pace reflects still robust growth in India, Maldives, and Nepal, offsetting the effects of the floods in Pakistan and the economic and political crises in Afghanistan and Sri Lanka. The deteriorating global environment, however, will weigh on investment in the region,” the report said pointing to a “sharp, long-lasting slowdown” with the global growth expected at 1.7 per cent this year.

 

Business News

 

4. Google pilots ‘Soundpod by Google Pay’ for UPI payments in India

·      Google is actively working on a Soundbox for the India market, similar to the Paytm or PhonePe ones that you see at your neighbourhood shop which gives a sound alert on the digital payment that has been made. The search giant is piloting a soundbox of its own in the country to alert sellers of confirmations for Unified Payments Interface (UPI)-based payments.

·      The company has branded them as ‘Soundpod by Google Pay’ and is currently distributing it as a pilot with some shopkeepers in north India, including Delhi. The Soundpods are being built by Amazon-backed ToneTag, the report mentioned.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

·      Google Founders: Larry Page, Sergey Brin;

·      Google CEO: Sundar Pichai (2 Oct 2015–);

·      Google Parent organization: Alphabet Inc;

·      Google Founded: 4 September 1998;

·      Google Headquarters: Mountain View, California, United States.

 

5. Mastercard Announced Second Phase of Girls4Tech STEM Education in India

·      Mastercard announced the expansion of its signature Girls4Tech, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education program in India. The Girls4Tech is supported by Mastercard Impact Fund and in partnership with the American India Foundation (AIF).

·      The expansion of the program aims to reach up to 1 lakh female students across the country by 2024 to encourage them to take up STEM Education. The program includes 14,400 students in Delhi and 40 additional government schools where STEM courses will be offered to girls aged 8 to 14.

·      The Girls4Tech program reached over 1,12,482 girls in urban and rural locations across six states in India, including 10,000 across Delhi.

·      According to the All-India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) 2019-20, women comprised over 43 percent of STEM graduates in India, and only 14 percent pursued scientific research in universities and institutions.

·      The situation becomes more concerning considering the skills gap in the workforce and the increasing necessity for businesses to attract, hire, and nurture a diverse workforce.

 

6. Bharti Airtel to Invest Rs 2,000 Crore to set up Hyperscale data Centre in Hyderabad

·      Bharti Airtel Group announced that it will be investing Rs 2,000 crore for setting up a large hyperscale data centre in Hyderabad. The announcement was made at the Telangana Lounge at Davos, Switzerland in the presence of Telangana Minister for IT and Industries K T Rama Rao.

·      The release added that the Bharti Airtel Group, through its data centre arm, Nxtra Data Centers, will invest the amount as capital investment for the infrastructure which will further attract investments from their customers.

·      A data Centre is a dedicated space or building that houses an organization’s IT equipment and servers. The company can draw on its data center resources to operate its business or serve those resources to the public as a service.

·      A Hyperscale data center is essentially the premise that provides space, power and cooling for network infrastructure designed specifically for offering a portfolio of highly scalable applications and storage services to businesses.

 

Banking News

 

7. SBI raises Rs 9,718 cr via infra bonds

·      SBI has raised Rs 9,718 crore through its second infrastructure bond issuance at a coupon rate of 7.70 per cent per annum for the 15-year money. This is the second fund-raising since early December when it had mopped up Rs 10,000 crore via infra bonds.

·      The fund proceeds will be utilised for enhancing long-term resources for funding infrastructure and affordable housing. The issue attracted good response from investors with bids of Rs 14,805 crore, indicating an oversubscription of 2.96 times from 118 bidders,investors were from across mutual funds, provident and pension funds, and insurers.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

·      SBI Chairperson: Dinesh Kumar Khara

·      SBI Founded: 1 July 1955

·      SBI Headquarters: Mumbai

 

8. Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Limited Awarded with the Best Bank Award

·      Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Limited (TMB) has bagged the Best Small Bank award in the Best Banks survey for the year 2022. The Best Banks survey was conducted by Business Today- KPMG (BT-KPMG Best Banks Survey). The bank has won the Best Small Bank Award under the category of banks with a book size of less than Rs 1 Lakh crore.

·      The BT-KPMG is conducting the survey and awarding the best banks for the past 27 years with 37 parameters for declaring a bank as an awardee.

·      TBM has shown its performance to come up as a topper in the respective categories.

 

Science and Technology News

 

9. MSN launches generic version of breast cancer drug Palborest

·      MSN Group launched the ‘world’s first’ generic Palbociclib tablets indicated for advanced breast cancer therapy under the brand Palborest. Palbociclib is approved by the USFDA, EMA and CDSCO in combination with hormonal therapies for patients with hormone receptor positive, human epidermal growth factor receptor negative locally advanced or metastatic breast cancer.

·      Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) are a class of medications that cause a profound and prolonged reduction of stomach acid production. They do so by irreversibly inhibiting the stomach’s H+/K+ ATPase proton pump.

·      They are the most potent inhibitors of acid secretion available. Proton-pump inhibitors have largely superseded the H2-receptor antagonists, a group of medications with similar effects but a different mode of action, and antacids.

·      PPIs are among the most widely sold medications in the world. The class of proton-pump inhibitor medications is on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines. Omeprazole is the specific listed example.

Important Takeaway For All Exam:-

·      MSN Group – Founder, Chairman & Managing Director – Dr. MSN Reddy

·      MSN Group – Executive Director – Bharat Reddy

·      MSN Group Founded – Hyderabad 2003

 

10. Canadian and IISc astronomers detect radio signal in distant galaxy using GMRT

·      Astronomers from McGill University in Canada and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru have used data from the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) in Pune to detect a radio signal originating from atomic hydrogen in an extremely distant galaxy.

·      Using GMRT data, researcher have detected a radio signal from atomic hydrogen in a distant galaxy at redshift z=1.29. The signal detected by the team was emitted from this galaxy when the universe was only 4.9 billion years old; in other words, the look-back time for this source is 8.8 billion years.

·      Simply put, atomic hydrogen acts as a fuel during the formation of stars. When hot ionised gas from the surrounding medium falls onto the galaxy, it cools and forms atomic hydrogen, which then becomes molecular hydrogen eventually leading to the formation of stars.

·      This atomic hydrogen emits radio waves of 21 cm wavelength which is easily detectable using low-frequency radio telescopes like the GMRT. Therefore, 21 cm emission is a direct tracer of the atomic gas content in both nearby and distant galaxies.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

·      NCRA Founded:- Early 1960’s

·      NCRA Director:-  Yashwant Gupta

·      IISc Founded:- 1909

·      IISc Founders:- Jamsetji Tata & Krishnaraja Wadiyar IV

·      IISc Director:- Govindan Rangrajan

 

Summits and Conferences News

 

11. ‘Think 20’ meeting of G20 began to be held Bhopal

·      A two-day Think-20 summit under the auspices of the G20 will bring together prominent individuals from around the world to debate a range of issues, including “Global Governance with LiFE, Values, and Wellbeing.”

·      Shivraj Singh Chouhan, the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh, went over preparations for the meeting on Saturday.

·      94 representatives from various nations would attend the summit.

·      MP CM will be present at the opening ceremony at the city’s Kushabhau Thackeray International Convention Center.

·      Tetsushi Sonobe, Dean and CEO of the Assian Development Bank Institute, Tokyo, will be the keynote speaker at the opening ceremony.

 

12. Hyderabad chosen as host of WEF Center for Fourth Industrial Revolution

·      The sole centre in India with a focus on healthcare and life sciences will be created in Hyderabad as the World Economic Forum Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR Telangana).

·      One of Asia’s major centres for the biological sciences is Telangana.

·      Telangana is known as the vaccine centre of the world and produces one-third of all vaccines produced globally.

·      The 18th centre of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) Network, which spans four continents, is now C4IR Telangana.

·      With the opening of this facility, Telangana will strengthen its position as a global leader and establish itself as a key node in the network of 4IR centres.

Important Takeaway For All Exam:

·      WEF Founder: Klaus Schwab

·      WEF Headquarters: Cologny, Switzerland

·      WEF President: Borge Brende

 

13. Initiative to unlock $3 trillion a year for climate and nature launched by WEF

·      The Giving to Amplify Earth Action (GAEA) was introduced by the World Economic Forum in an effort to assist raise the $3 trillion in funding needed annually to achieve net-zero, stop the destruction of the environment, and restore biodiversity by 2050.

·      More than 45 partners, including HCL Technologies through its chairperson Roshni Nadar Malhotra, are supporting the global movement to fund and build new and existing public, private, and philanthropic partnerships (PPPPs).

·      The goal of guiding the planet towards a 1.5-degree Celsius warming trajectory is in jeopardy due to the energy and cost of living problems, according to the WEF.

·      In the meantime, the recent UN Biodiversity Conference (CBD COP15) decision to save 30% of the entire Earth and sea appears audacious but flimsy in the face of a worsening biodiversity crisis.

 

Ranks and Reports News

 

14. TCS, Infosys among top three global IT brands as per Brand Finance

·      Tata Consultancy Services and Infosys grew their brand value to retain their positions as the second and third most valuable IT services brands, according to the ‘IT Services 25’ list prepared by UK-based consultancy Brand Finance for the year 2023.

·      Accenture retained the top slot for the fifth year straight, with a brand valued at $39.8 billion. It is the strongest IT services brand in the ranking with a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score of 87.8 out of 100 and a corresponding AAA brand rating.

·      TCS’s brand value was up 2 per cent at $17.2 billion. TCS has delivered many tailored transformation programmes as clients migrated to various hybrid working methods, said the Brand Finance report.

 

15. Global Fire Power Index, No Change In Top 4 Military Rankings

·      The Global Firepower Index ranks the countries based on their potential military strength. India is ranked fourth in the index. The Global Firepower Index ranked 145 countries. The countries were evaluated based on prolonged offensive and defensive military campaigns.

·      The Global Firepower Index is calculated using fifty individual factors from geography to logistical capability.

·      It also includes manpower, land forces, airpower, natural resources, naval forces, logistics and financials.

·      Under manpower, the factors considered are total population, paramilitary, reaching military age annually, active reserves and active services.

·      Under equipment, the factors considered are trainer fleet, aircraft fleet strength, helicopter fleet, attack fleets, rocket projectors, tank strength, towed artillery, aircraft carriers, naval fleet strength, destroyers, submarines, coastal patrol craft, frigates, mine warfare craft, coastal patrol craft and tanker fleets.

 

16. Amazon back as World’s Most Valued Brand, Apple down to No 2

·      Billionaire Jeff Bezos’s e-commerce company Amazon has become the most valued brand, overtaking Apple, last year’s topper. Amazon has reclaimed the top spot as the world’s most valuable brand despite its brand value falling 15 per cent this year from $350.3 billion to $299.3 billion.

·      According to brand valuation consultancy Brand Finance’s report, “Global 500 2023”, while Amazon is back at No 1, its brand value has fallen by over $50 billion this year, with its rating slipping from AAA+ to AAA. This is as consumers evaluate it more harshly in the post-pandemic world.

Top 10 most valuable brands according to the report:

·      Amazon- Worth $299.3 billion

·      Apple- Worth $297.5 billion

·      Google-Worth $281.4 billion

·      Microsoft-Worth $191.6 billion

·      Walmart-Worth $113.8 billion

·      Samsung Group-Worth $99.7 billion

·      ICBC-Worth $69.5 billion

·      Verizon-Worth $67.4 billion

·      Tesla-Worth $66.2 billion

·      TikTok/Douyin-Worth $65.7 billion

 

Sports News

 

17. South Africa’s Hashim Amla ended his 22-year cricket playing career

·      Hashim Amla ended his 22-year playing career, with his legacy secure as one of South Africa’s all-time cricketing greats. Amla was a key member of one of South Africa’s most powerful teams when they clinched the Test championship mace with a series win in England in 2012.

·      Amla made a South African record 311 not out in the first Test at The Oval in London. He made his first-class debut for a Kwa-Zulu-Natal team, against the touring England team, as a 16-year-old in December 1999 and made his Test debut against India in Kolkata five years later.

 

18. ICC suspended Rwanda’s Geovanis Uwase for illegal bowling action

·      The Rwanda fast bowler, Geovanis Uwase has been suspended by ICC from bowling in international cricket with immediate effect after her action was found illegal at Under-19 Women’s T20 World Cup.

·      The decision was taken by the Event Panel, which comprises members of the ICC Panel of Human Movement Specialists. Uwase was reported by the match officials during Rwanda’s match against Pakistan on January 15, with footage captured during their match against Zimbabwe on January 17 shared with the Event Panel for review.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams: 

·      ICC Founded: 15 June 1909;

·      ICC Chairman: Greg Barclay;

·      ICC CEO: Geoff Allardice;

·      ICC Headquarters: Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

 

Important Days

 

19. 18th National Disaster Response Force Day celebrates on 19th January 2023

·      18th National Disaster Response Force day is celebrated on January 19, 2023 by the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF). The day has been celebrated on this day since 2006 when the rescue force was officially formed.

·      The specialised, multi-skilled rescue force is made up of battalions from the Border Security Force (BSF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) and the Assam Rifles.

·      The NDRF is the primary agency responsible for conducting rescue operations during disasters like drowning, building collapses, landslides, devastating floods, earthquakes and cyclones.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

·      Director Generals of NDRF: Atul Karwal;

·      HQ of NDRF: New Delhi;

·      NDRF Formed: 2006.

 

Obituaries News

 

20. World’s oldest person, Lucile Randon passes away at the age of 118

·     The world’s oldest person, French nun Lucile Randon, has died aged 118. Randon, also known as Sister Andre, was born in southern France on February 11, 1904, a decade before World War I. She was long regarded as the oldest European, but the death of Japan’s Kane Tanaka at the age of 119 last year made her the world’s oldest person.

·      The record for oldest confirmed age reached by a human belongs to Jeanne Calment, also of southern France, who died in 1997 at the age of 122. Guinness World Records had officially recognised her status in April 2022.

 

Miscellaneous News

 

21. J&K Becomes First Indian UT to Completely Shift to e-Governance Mode

·      Jammu & Kashmir becomes the first union territory in India to completely switch to a digital method of administration, leading the way in the digital transformation of governance. All governmental and administrative services in Jammu & Kashmir are currently only offered digitally.

·      The declaration was made during the meeting of the Committee of Secretaries. Chief Secretary Dr. Arun Kumar Mehta instructed the commissioner of IT during the meeting to make sure that all government services would only be accessible online.



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