Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 24 April 2022
Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 24 April 2022
PM Modi to meet President Emmanuel Macron to cement India-France ties
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to travel to Europe from May 2 to May 6 to have bilateral meetings with re-elected French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz apart from addressing the key India-Nordic summit in Copenhagen.
With Macron getting re-elected as French President for the second tern with a resounding vote, PM Modi is expected to drop by in Paris to meet and greet the leader of one of India’s closest bilateral partners.
India and France have very close political and defense relationships with both sides willing to assist each other in areas of critical and emerging technologies apart from having similar views on the Indo-Pacific.
Being strategic partners, India and France are expected to move ahead on Atmanirbhar Bharat project of PM Modi by manufacturing air independent propulsion submarines and high thrust aircraft engines in India apart from mapping the Indian Ocean bed.
PM Modi and President Macron also have personal relations with each other and the latter understands the Indian position on the Ukraine war over Russia.
With Russia continuing its Ukraine campaign relentlessly, the war in Europe will be on top of the agenda of PM Modi’s visit with Nordic countries and Germany also thinking twice about their stance on Moscow. Germany in particular has been a huge trade partner to both Russia and China but the Ukraine war and the new Chancellor has made Bonn think about its national security.
Putin eyes grabbing maximum Ukraine land after losing interest in talks
Russian president Vladimir Putin has lost interest in diplomatic efforts to end the Ukraine war and seems to now be set on seizing as much territory as possible, news website Financial Times reported.
After Russia suffered setbacks last month, Putin was reportedly seeking a peace deal with Ukraine but now has told his people involved in bid to end the war that he sees no prospect for a settlement.
“Putin sincerely believes in the nonsense he hears on [Russian] television and he wants to win big,” a person briefed on the talks Putin had with his officials, told the website. The talks stalled after Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of committing war crimes against civilians in Bucha and Mariupol.
The Russian president was furious after Ukraine sank the Moskva, the flagship of Moscow's Black Sea fleet, and said the peace efforts were at a dead end.
Russia on Friday had announced that one crew member had died and 27 were missing after the missile cruiser had sunk.
"As a result of a fire on April 13, the Moskva missile cruiser was seriously damaged due to the detonation of ammunition," the defence ministry had said in a statement. However, Pentagon claimed that the Russian warship had sunk in the Black Sea after being hit by two missiles from Ukraine.
The fighting between the two forces has entered the third month. The United Nations commission on refugees has estimated nearly five million people have fled Ukraine since Moscow's all out invasion on the eastern European country on February 24.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and defence secretary held talks with the Ukrainian president in Kyiv last Sunday. Zelensky is said to have asked the United States for more powerful weapons to resist the Russian offensive in the south and east, Reuters reported.
HDFC Bank declares Rs 15.50 per share dividend for shareholders
HDFC Bank on Saturday declared a 1550 per cent or 15.50 per share dividend to its shareholders for the financial year 2021-22.
The board at its meeting has recommended a dividend of Rs 15.50 per equity share of Re 1 (1550 per cent) out of the net profits for the year ended March 31, 2022, HDFC Bank said in a regulatory filing.
This is subject to the approval of the shareholders at the ensuing Annual General Meeting, it said.
The record date for determining the eligibility of members entitled to receive dividend on equity shares is May 13, 2022, it said.
Last Saturday, the country's largest private sector lender HDFC Bank reported a 23 per cent jump in standalone net profit to Rs 10,055.20 crore for the March quarter, led by growth in loan demand across categories and lower provisioning as bad loans were trimmed.
The bank's net profit during the corresponding period of the previous fiscal stood at Rs 8,186.51 crore.
In a surprise announcement earlier this month, the bank said its parent company HDFC Ltd will be merged into HDFC Bank in about 18 months and the combined balance sheet will reach Rs 17.87 lakh crore.
India's foreign exchange reserves down $311 million to $603.7 billion
The country's foreign exchange reserves declined by USD 311 million to reach USD 603.694 billion in the week ended April 15, RBI data showed.
In the previous week ended April 8, the reserves had declined by USD 2.471 billion to stand at USD 604.004 billion.
During the reporting week, the fall in the forex kitty was on account of a decline in the foreign currency assets (FCA), a major component of the overall reserves, as per weekly data by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
FCAs dropped by USD 877 million to USD 536.768 billion.
Expressed in dollar terms, the foreign currency assets include the effect of appreciation or depreciation of non-US units like the euro, pound and yen held in the foreign exchange reserves.
Gold reserves increased by USD 626 billion to USD 43.145 billion in the reporting week, the data showed.
The special drawing rights (SDRs) with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) dipped by USD 44 million to USD 18.694 billion.
The country's reserve position with the IMF decreased by USD 16 million to USD 5.086 billion in the reporting week.
::Science and tech::
IISc studied microplastic found in Cauvery river
Pollutants like microplastics may be causing growth defects in fish, including skeletal deformities, in the Cauvery River, a new study reveals. Published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, the study was led by Upendra Nongthomba, Professor at the Department of Molecular Reproduction, Development and Genetics (MRDG), in the Indian Institute of Science (IISc).
Nongthomba likes his fish. “Over the years, I have cherished going to the backwaters of the Krishna Raja Sagara [KRS] Dam and having fried fish on the Cauvery River bank,” he says. But in recent times, he has been noticing physical deformities in some of them. He began to wonder whether the quality of water may have something to do with it.
“Water is essential for everyone, including animals and plants. When it is polluted, it is capable of causing diseases, including cancer,” adds Abass Toba Anifowoshe, a PhD student in Nongthomba’s lab, and the first author of the study. Nongthomba’s lab, therefore, conducted a comprehensive study of pollution at the KRS Dam and its potential effects on fish. They collected water samples from three different locations with varying speeds of water flow – fast-flowing, slow-flowing, and stagnant – since water speed is known to affect the concentration of pollutants.
In the first part of the study, Nongthomba’s team analysed the physical and chemical parameters of the water samples. All but one of them fell within the prescribed limits. The exception was dissolved oxygen (DO), whose levels were much lower than they needed to be in samples collected from the slow-flowing and stagnant sites. Water from these sites also had microbes such as Cyclops, Daphnia, Spirogyra, Spirochaeta and E. coli, well-known bio-indicators of water contamination.
Kumari Chanda: Growing up in haze to chasing a clear 800m goal
The middle-distance runner who has qualified for this year’s Asian Games wants to become only the second Indian to break the 2-minute mark in the two-lapper
Her replies are short, but taking Kumari Chanda's reticence for timidity would be a grave miscalculation. “When I stand on my mark, I don't think of the medal or timing. I just want to beat the girl in front of me,” says the 20-year-old, fresh from winning the 800m and finishing third in 1500m at last month's Federation Cup meet in Kozhikode. She clocked 2:02:11 in the 800m to meet the qualifying mark for this year's Asian Games.
Chanda’s athletics world is far removed from Sonpur village in Uttar Pradesh, about 650 km from the national capital. There, in a thatched mud house with no toilet or water supply, her father Satyanarayan Prajapati is fighting what appears a losing battle against tuberculosis.