Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 09 January 2021
Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 09 January 2020
World watching how India runs globe's biggest Covid vaccination drive: PM Modi
India is ready with two made-in-India vaccines for the protection of humanity and the world is not only waiting for them but also watching as to how the country runs the globe's biggest vaccination programme.
In his address at the inauguration of the 16th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) Convention, Modi also asserted that if democracy is most strong, vibrant and lively anywhere in the world, it is in India.
"When India got Independence then it was said that such a poor and under-literate country will disintegrate and democracy was impossible here. Today's truth is that India is united and if democracy is most strong, vibrant and lively anywhere in the world, it is in India," he said.
Talking about India's fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, he said the country is among the nations with the lowest fatality rate and the highest recovery rate.
Indian-American named to Houston Board of Dallas Federal Reserve Bank
Bhavesh V Patel, an Indian-American top executive of a multinational chemical company, has been appointed by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas to its Houston branch’s board of directors.
Patel, 53, is the chief executive officer and chairman of the management board of LyondellBasell Industries, one of the largest plastics, chemicals and refining companies in the world.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas appointed Patel to its Houston branch’s board of directors for a term ending December 31, 2023.
He joined LyondellBasell in 2010 and held a variety of senior leadership roles including senior vice president, Olefins and Polyolefins – Americas; senior vice president, Olefins and Polyolefins - Europe, Asia and International, based in the Netherlands; and executive vice president, Olefins and Polyolefins - Europe, Asia and International.
Patel was named the CEO and chairman of the company’s management board in January 2015.
Prior to joining LyondellBasell, he held multiple leadership positions for Chevron Corporation and its affiliates for more than 20 years.
Govt clarifies KYC needed only for cash purchase of jewellery above 10 lakh
The Department of Revenue (DoR), Ministry of Finance has clarified that any purchase of gold, silver, jewellery, or precious gems and stones below 2 lakh does not require PAN or Aadhaar of a customer as mandatory Know Your Customer (KYC) document.
Sources said that the notification issued under PML Act, 2002, on December 28, 2020, is a requirement of FATF Dealers in Precious Metals and Precious Stones (DPMS) to carry out KYC and Customer Due Diligence only when they conduct cash transactions above 10 lakh.
"This is a requirement of FATF (Financial Action Task Force) - the global money laundering and terrorist financing overseer which as the inter-governmental body sets international standards aimed to prevent illegal activities on terror funding and money laundering," they added.
According to sources, one of the recommendations requires the DPMS sector to fulfil obligations of Customer Due Diligence (CDD) when they conduct cash transactions above a certain limit (USD/EUR 15,000). India is a member of FATF since 2010.
Since in India, cash transactions above 2 lakh are not allowed under section 269ST of Income-tax Act, 1961, dealers not receiving cash more than 2 lakh in compliance with the existing provisions of the Income-tax Act will not be covered under this notification, they said further.
Chinese soldier strays across LAC, held on Pangong Tso's southern bank
A soldier of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was held by the Indian Army on the southern bank of Pangong Tso in Ladakh on Friday after he strayed across to the Indian side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
“The People’s Liberation Army (PLA soldier) had transgressed across the LAC and was taken into custody by Indian troops deployed in this area (south of Pangong Tso). Troops from either side are deployed along the LAC since friction erupted last year due to unprecedented mobilisation and forward concentration by Chinese troops,” the army said in a statement.
Heights on both banks of the lake have been at the centre of the border row between the two countries.
The PLA soldier is being dealt with according to procedures and circumstances under which he crossed the LAC are being investigated, the statement said. The soldier is likely to be returned after the completion of formalities involved in such cases.
“The PLA soldier was apparently moving from one location to another on the Chinese side of the LAC when he lost his way. He was carrying a sleeping bag, a storage device, his military identity card and a mobile with a charger. He was released after a thorough interrogation and completion of the necessary formalities.
Science and Tech
'Iron Man' bacteria could help protect environment
Researchers during a new study have found how some microbes can stand up to a toxic metal. This has led towards opening the door for its applications in recycling and remediation.
This study was published in the journal, Frontiers in Microbiology. When Michigan State University's Gemma Reguera first proposed her new research project to the National Science Foundation, one grant reviewer responded that the idea was not "environmentally relevant."
As other reviewers and the program manager didn't share this sentiment, NSF funded the proposal. And, now, Reguera's team has shown that microbes are capable of an incredible feat that could help reclaim a valuable natural resource and soak up toxic pollutants.
"The lesson is that we really need to think outside the box, especially in biology. We just know the tip of the iceberg. Microbes have been on earth for billions of years, and to think that they can't do something precludes us from so many ideas and applications," said Reguera, a professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics.
Cobalt is a valuable but increasingly scarce metal used in batteries for electric vehicles and alloys for spacecraft. It's also highly toxic to livings things, including humans and bacteria.
"It kills a lot of microbes," Reguera said. "Cobalt penetrates their cells and wreaks havoc."
But the team suspected Geobacter might be able to escape that fate. These microbes are a hardy bunch. They can block uranium contaminants from getting into groundwater, and they can power themselves by pulling energy from minerals containing iron oxide. "They respire rust," Reguera said.
German Zverev splits with coach Ferrer ahead of new season
German Alexander Zverev will head into the 2021 season looking for a new coach after splitting with Spaniard David Ferrer, the world number seven confirmed on social media.
Zverev added former world number three Ferrer to his coaching team around the middle of 2020 and reached his maiden Grand Slam final at the U.S. Open, where he went down to Dominic Thiem after winning the first two sets.
The German picked up two ATP titles in Cologne and also made the final of the ATP Masters 1000 event in Paris in an encouraging close to the season.
"I would like to thank David for the months we have shared, the times on and off the court, wishing him only the best in the future," Zverev wrote on his Instagram account.