Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 26 April 2022
Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 26 April 2022
Rights panel launches portal for individuals, orgs to identify street children
- The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has launched a portal to enable individuals and organisations to identify, help children living on the streets and connect, collate data, and collaborate for their rehabilitation.
- It provided details about the portal in an affidavit filed in the Supreme Court in response to a suomotu petition pending in the court for helping rescue and rehabilitate the street children.
- The panel said street children can now be identified by any individual, NGO, social organisation, or academic institution, through the portal for rehabilitating them. It earlier operated a portal, where states and Union territories (UTs) updated information about such children. This portal has so far received details of only 17,914 street children.
- A bench of justices L NageswaraRao and BR Gavai on Monday observed the number of children identified by states and UTs is paltry. It wondered why the reporting of these children was low despite NCPCR having estimated the number of these children to be around 1.5 to 2 million.
- An NGO Save the Children study two years back identified nearly 200,000 street children in just four states, including 70,000 in Delhi.
- The bench told states and UTs represented before it to ask their officers to be vigilant and take steps.
- Additional solicitor general KM Nataraj, who represented NCPCR, informed the court the new portal link will open the option for all citizens and NGOs to provide details about such children. He added states and UTs identified street children as children living on the streets with families, children who stay during the day on streets and return at night to nearby hutments/slums, and children living on the streets without any support.
Printed Study Materials for IBPS, SBI Bank Exam
Kim Jong Un vows to develop North Korea's nuclear forces ‘at maximum speed’
- North Korea says leader Kim Jong Un has vowed to bolster his country’s nuclear capability “at the maximum speed.”
- The North’s official Korean Central News Agency said that Kim made the remarks during a military parade the previous night.
- KCNA cites Kim as saying North Korea will “continue to take steps to further bolster and develop its nuclear forces at the maximum speed.”
- Kim’s speech came as North Korea remains locked in a long-running diplomatic standoff with the United States over the North’s nuclear program.
- In recent months, Kim carried out a spate of missile tests in what experts say was an attempt to pressure the U.S. to win sanctions relief and other concessions.
- North Korea began a much-anticipated military parade in its capital on Monday to mark the 90th anniversary of its army’s founding, with outside experts saying it was likely to display powerful missiles and other weapons capable of targeting the United States and its allies.
- Kim has stuck to his goals of simultaneously developing nuclear weapons and the country's dismal economy in face of international pressure and has shown no willingness to fully surrender a nuclear arsenal he sees as his biggest guarantee of survival. North Korea has conducted 13 rounds of weapons tests this year, including its first flight test of an intercontinental ballistic missile since 2017.
- There are also signs that North Korea is rebuilding tunnels at a nuclear testing ground that was last active in 2017, possibly in preparation for a resumption of testing. It could also conduct a banned launch of a long-range rocket to put a spy satellite into orbit or test-fly missiles over Japan, experts say. North Korean state media did not immediately report the parade. Earlier Monday, official newspapers ran editorials calling for stronger public support of Kim.
Raising policy rates is not anti-national, RBI will have to do it: Rajan
- Former Reserve Bank of India Governor RaghuramRajan said that the central bank will have to increase the headline rate at some point. "With inflation soaring in the country, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will, at some point in time, have to raise benchmark interest rates, and it is important for politicians and bureaucrats to understand that the rise in policy rates is not some anti-national activity benefiting foreign investors, but is an investment in economic stability, said RaghuramRajan, former RBI governor.
- In March, headline inflation in the country spiked to 6.95 per cent compared with 6.07 per cent in February. The headline inflation has now breached the 6 per cent mark for three consecutive months. In the recently concluded monetary policy meet, the RBI sharply revised its inflation projection from 4.5 per cent to 5.7 per cent for FY23. Further, the headline inflation is expected to stay above 6 per cent in the first quarter of FY22, as per RBI’s projections. And, for the June-September period, the CPI inflation rate is projected at 5.8 per cent. Consequently, economists have forecast aggressive rate hikes in the next one year.
- “Of course, no one is happy when rates have to be raised”, Rajan said in his note. “I still get brickbats from politically-motivated critics who allege the RBI held back the economy during my term. Some of my predecessors were similarly criticized. At such times, it helps to let the facts talk. And the correct facts are important to guide future policy. It is essential that the RBI does what it needs to, and the broader polity gives it the latitude to do so”, he added.
Six groups set up to improve PSB functioning to submit report by December
- Six working groups created to suggest ways to improve digitisation in the state-owned banks and strengthen their balance sheets have been asked to submit their respective reports by December, according to a senior banker.
- Participating in the meeting, Financial Services Secretary Sanjay Malhotra recently asked the banks to explore strategies for long-term profitability and adopt a more customer-centric approach.
- The senior banker, who participated in the recently concluded Manthan 2022 - a meeting of the top PSU bankers, said the six working groups would look into functioning the public sector banks (PSBs) and suggest ways to improve customer service, digitisation, HR incentives, corporate governance and collaboration.
- The working groups are expected to submit their respective reports by the end of the year, the banker said.
- The groups will have regular meetings and periodic review to track the progress of each panel, another banker said.
- Manthan was held on April 22, to brainstorm with the top leadership of public sector banks and unlock next-generation reforms, while continuing with the EASE journey. The last such exercise was held in 2019. The first PSB Manthan took place in 2014.
- Public sector banks have turned corner in 2020-21, after booking losses for five years due to various steps taken by the government. It is to be noted that no PSBs have faced any loss in the April-December period of 2021-22 and clocked a collective net profit of Rs 48,874 crore during this period.
::Science and tech::
Russia tests the world's "most powerful" nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile "RS-28 SARMAT,"
- Two months into the invasion in Ukraine and after failing to take Kyiv, Russia in a show of strength tested a new nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile (ICMB). The Russian defence ministry called the RS-28 Sarmat “the most powerful missile” in the world.
- What is Sarmat capability? And how true is Russia’s claim? Here are some answers.
- The Sarmat, the heavy ICBM, is the latest addition to Russia’s nuclear arsenal. Weighing more than 200 tonnes, it can be deployed with 10 or more warheads on each missile, according to the United States Congressional Research Service.
- It has been designed to elude anti-missile defence systems with a short initial boost phase, giving enemy surveillance systems a tiny window to track, according to a report in NDTV.
- The long-range missile has been under development since the early 2000s and was scheduled to be deployed at the end of 2022. Now the launch comes at a time of extreme geopolitical tension over the war in Ukraine.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed that the missile can hit any target on Earth.
- He was shown on TV being told by the military that the long-awaited Sarmat missile had been test-launched for the first time from Plesetsk in northwest Russia and hit targets in the Kamchatka peninsula, nearly 6,000 km away, reports Reuters.
- “The new complex has the highest tactical and technical characteristics and is capable of overcoming all modern means of anti-missile defence. It has no analogues in the world and won't have for a long time to come,” Putin said.
- “This truly unique weapon will strengthen the combat potential of our armed forces, reliably ensure the security of Russia from external threats and make those who, in the heat of aggressive rhetoric, try to threaten our country, think twice,” the president warned.
Anurag Thakur asks IOA details over shooting, wrestling omission from 2026 CWG
- Union sports minister Anurag Thakur has directed the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) to provide details over shooting and wrestling, the country’s big medal events, being dropped from the 2026 Commonwealth Games in Australia.
- Thakur has asked the IOA to give information on who represented the apex sports body when such a decision impacting Indian sport was being taken by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF).
- “The Sports Ministry would like to ask the IOA what was the reason that shooting and wrestling were not made a part of Commonwealth Games 2026 and who went to take part in the meeting when this decision was taken, in which situation this decision was taken,” Thakur was quoted as saying by ANI on the sidelines of the Khelo India University Games in Bengaluru.