Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 13 January 2022
Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 13 January 2022
Orissa high court shuts down for 5 days as Covid cases rise, reopens on Jan 18
The Orissa high court has cancelled all hearings till January 17 in view of multiple cases of court staffers getting infected with Covid-19, and the “unprecedented surge” in infections in Odisha.
“It is hereby notified for general information that in view of the unprecedented surge in Covid-19 cases in the State and due to increase in the Covid-19 positive cases amongst the staff of the High Court, the High Court and its offices shall be completely shut down from 13th January, 2022 to 17th January, 2022, both dates inclusive,” the high court registrar (judicial) SK Mishra said in an order.
The offices of the high court shall resume functioning on January 18 but will operate on limited strength till 4 February.
The high court order said between January 18 and February 4, two division benches and seven single benches shall function to take up only the exceptionally urgent cases.
The high court has strength of 18 judges including chief justice S Muralidhar.
Decision of the high court order came even as Odisha on Wednesday reported 8,778 fresh Covid cases. The single-day highest case count in the third Covid-19 wave has taken the total number of active Covid cases in the state to 35,242. The positivity rate also rose to 11.7%, the highest in 7 months. During the second wave, it took 29 days for Odisha’s daily count to go from 400 to 8,000 while this time it took just 12 days. On January 1, Odisha reported 424 Covid cases.
Odisha’s director, public health, Niranjan Mishra said though Covid-19 cases are increasing, an overwhelming majority of the patients are asymptomatic. “The coming days in January, February and early days of March are very crucial. The Test Positivity Rate in the state has considerably increased and is now over 11%,” he said.
Ex-envoy warns China on US ties, takes a dig at 'wolf warrior diplomacy'
China has been battling a difficult economic situation and its aggressive policies have been increasing tensions in the neighbourhood. This quagmire has led to concerns among Chinese diplomats and experts about the dragon’s relations with the United States.
Such concerns were highlighted by China’s longest serving ambassador to the United States, Cui Tianki. Nikkei drew attention to the comments made by Cui at a symposium last month at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, which is used to entertain foreign dignitaries. The candid remarks were peppered with words like “careless” and “incompetent”, noted Nikkei in which Cui asserted that China must be very vigilant while dealing with the US.
Taking a dig at China’s “wolf warrior diplomacy”, the diplomat urged China to stop being swayed by US provocations.
"In principle, we should not fight a war we are not prepared for, a war we are not sure of winning, a war of anger and attrition,” Cui said in the remarks made at the symposium on December 20.
"In the face of complex situations, we must always have the country at large in mind, and not always think about being an internet celebrity," Cui further said, as reported by Nikkei.
The Japan-based newspaper noted that by presenting a sharp analysis of problems with China's diplomacy, Cui differed from other diplomats who play up to President Xi Jinping.
The words of caution come against the backdrop of Biden administration's strengthening of ties with allies such as Britain, Japan, Australia and China's neighbour India.
China's current tough line on the US has been spearheaded by top diplomat Yang Jiechi, a member of the Chinese Communist Party's powerful Politburo, and Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
Discussions have been going on in China about mending the ties with the US, the most significant of China’s bilateral ties. In 2020, the bilateral trade volume was $615.2 billion, including exports to the US worth $452.58 billion.
Piyush Goyal appeals to industry to prepay MSMEs to boost employment
Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal asked industry bodies to prepay Medium, Small and Micro Enterprises (MSME) to safeguard their viability and to boost employment and growth.
He was interacting with the leaders of major industry bodies virtually from New Delhi.
The meeting was called to seek their suggestions and inputs to ensure the continuation of fast rebound of economic activities and high growth rates being achieved.
The Union Minister congratulated Indian Industry for bouncing back after taking a hit due to the pandemic and for the resilience displayed while grappling with the pandemic, especially in the field of exports.
The Minister said that the growth in services exports, in spite of travel and tourism restrictions was truly commendable and said that we must aim to reach USD 250 billion services exports.
Highlighting the progress made in FTA negotiations, Goyal said that the Government was striving to conclude several Early Harvest Agreements so that their benefits could reach the industry soon. He said that an FTA with UAE was nearing conclusion, negotiations were at an advanced stage with Australia and discussions with Israel were ongoing.
Referring to the relaunch of market access negotiations with Korea, he said that a comprehensive fast track dialogue had been initiated to address concerns arising out of the previous agreement.
The minister said that there was an imminent need for up-gradation of testing facilities and labs to improve to quality and called upon the Indian Industry to extend its support in this regard.
He also asks the industry to lend guidance for transformational exports growth beyond USD 400 billion.
The Union Minister also urged industry to use single window for business processes and approvals to the maximum extent possible and asked them to give suggestions and inputs for further decriminalization of rules and reduction of compliance burdens wherever feasible.
NDMC council rejects proposal to raise tax burden on residents
The standing committee of the BJP-led North civic body did not impose any new tax and also rejected a proposal in its budget 2022-23 to raise residential and commercial property taxes, officials said Wednesday, even though the municipality faces an acute financial crisis and has not been able to pay its staff for months.
The North Delhi Municipal Corporation also decided not to approve the Commissioner's proposal to reduce rebate on property taxes by 5 per cent.
The move by the civic body's standing committee comes ahead of the civic polls due this year.
North Delhi Municipal Corporation Commissioner Sanjay Goel in his budget 2022-23 presentation on November 25, 2021 had proposed to increase the property tax by 2 per cent and reduce the tax rebate from existing 15 percent to 10 percent.
He had said that these moves would strengthen the financial condition of the municipality.
Presenting the revised budget estimates, North Corporation Standing Committee Chairman Jogi Ram Jain said no new tax is being proposed in the civic body's budget.
"Since people are still not over the coronavirus pandemic and it has adversely impacted financial condition of the public, the proposal to reduce the rebate from 15% to 10% by Commissioner North DMC was not accepted. Proposal to increase the property tax by 2% as suggested by Commissioner is also not being accepted by Standing Committee," Jain said in his budget speech.
::Science and tech::
Senior Kerala rocket scientist S Somanath appointed as new ISRO chief
The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) approved the appointment of S Somanath to the post of Secretary, Department of Space and Chairman, ISRO for a combined tenure of three years from the date of joining of the post.
Somanath, who is at present director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), will succeed K Sivan.
"The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment of S Somanath, Director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) to the post of Secretary, Department of Space and Chairman, Space Commission for a combined tenure of three years from the date of joining of the post, inclusive of an extension in tenure beyond the age of superannuation in the public interest, or until further orders whichever is earlier," the statement reads.
Speaking to ANI, Somanath said, "I am very happy to join as Secretary, Department of Space and Chairman, Space Commission (ISRO). It is really an honour."
Talking about the areas of focus he said there are different segments which we need to concentrate on.
"Areas of focus will be technology, policy, implementation and areas where stakeholders need to be taken care of. There are different segments that we need to concentrate on. Looking at the technology side we are the powerhouse of technology various disciplines. We need to bring new approach methods so that available can be best utilized. There are many new technologies too. We need to bring in newer approaches; have to work with various capacity builders like tech companies," said Somanath.
Srikanth among 7 Indian shuttlers to test positive for Covid-19 at India Open
Badminton World Federation (BWF) on Thursday confirmed that as many as seven players have been withdrawn from the impending India Open 2022 after they tested positive for Covid-19.
These players include - KidambiSrikanthNammalwar, AshwiniPonnappa, Ritika Rahul Thaker, Treesa Jolly, MithunManjunath, SimranAman Singh, Khushi Gupta.
"The players returned a positive result to a mandatory RT-PCR test conducted on Tuesday. Doubles partners deemed close contact of the seven players have also been withdrawn from the tournament," the world governing body said in a statement.
These players will not be replaced in the main draw of the competition and their opponents will be given a walkover to the next round.