News: Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog has launched the Atma Nirbhar Bharat ARISE-Atal New India Challenges.
- Aim: To promote applied research and innovation in Indian MSMEs and startups.
- Ministries Involved: The programme will be driven by Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), four ministries—Ministry of Defence; Ministry of Food Processing Industries; Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs and associated industries to facilitate innovative solutions to sectoral problems.
- Under this programme, NITI Aayog has announced 15 new challenges for India’s startups and MSME ecosystem to address.
- The programme will then support deserving applied research based innovations by providing funding support of up to Rs 50 lakh for speedy development of the proposed technology solution and/or product.
News: Reserve Bank of India has released the data on the Foreign direct investment(FDI) into India.
- Singapore and Mauritius remained the major source countries accounting for about 50% of total FDI flows in 2019-20.
- They were followed by the Netherlands, the Cayman Islands, US and Japan.
- The FDI from Cayman Islands has jumped 305% to $3.49 billion during 2019-20, as against $863 million in 2018.The main activity of FDI was the financial services.
- Most of FDI equity flows went to the services sector including communication services, retail and wholesale trade, financial services, computer and business services and the manufacturing sector.
News: “The Levels and Trends in Child Mortality: Report 2020” has been released by UNICEF, WHO, Population Division of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs and the World Bank Group.
- Globally: The number of global under-five deaths has dropped to its lowest point on record in 2019 – down to 5.2 million from 12.5 million in 1990.
- Region wise: The regions of Central and Southern Asia and Oceania (excluding Australia and New Zealand) saw a faster decline in under-five mortality from 2010-2019 compared to 2000-2009.However, the global burden of under-five deaths weighs most heavily on just two regions – sub-Saharan Africa and Central and Southern Asia.
India Specific Data:
- The under-five mortality rate has declined to 34 in 2019 from 126 in 1990.The sex-specific under-five mortality rate in 1990 stood at 122 males and 131 females and this declined to 34 males and 35 females in 2019.
- The infant mortality rate has declined from 89 in 1990 to 28 in 2019,
- The neonatal mortality rate has declined from 57 in 1990 to 22 in 2019.
- The probability of dying among children aged 5–14 years declined from 21 in 1990 to 5 in 2019.
- The probability of dying among youth aged 15–24 years dipped from 24 in 1990 to 10 in 2019.
- Under-five mortality rate: Probability of dying between birth and five years of age expressed per 1,000 live births.
- Neonatal Mortality: Number of deaths during the first 28 completed days of life per 1,000 live births in a given year or period.
- Infant mortality rate(IMR): It is the number of deaths of children under one year of age per 1000 live births.
News: The first Indo-Pacific trilateral dialogue was held between India, Australia and France.
- Objective: To build strong bilateral ties that the three countries share with each other and synergise their respective strengths to ensure a peaceful, secure, prosperous and rules-based Indo-Pacific Region.
- Who attended it? The dialogue was co-chaired by Indian foreign secretary, secretary-general from the French ministry for Europe and foreign affairs and Australian foreign affairs secretary.
- Indo-Pacific Region: It is an integrated theatre that combines the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean and the land masses that surround them.Since it is primarily a maritime space, the Indo-Pacific is associated with maritime security and cooperation.
News: Union Finance Minister has felicitated the best performing banks on EASE Banking Reforms Index.
- EASE Banking Reforms Index: EASE stands for ‘Enhanced Access and Service Excellence’.It was launched in 2018 with the aim to institutionalize clean and smart banking.
- EASE 2.0 further progresses the reforms built in EASE 1.0 by making the reforms journey irreversible, strengthening processes and systems and driving outcomes.
- Prepared by: The index is prepared by the Indian Banking Association (IBA) and is commissioned by the Finance Ministry.
- Parameters: It ranks Public Sector Banks across six themes namely a) Responsible banking b) Customer Responsiveness c) Credit offtake d) PSBs Udyamitra for MSMEs e) Deepening Financial Inclusion and Digitisation and f) Ensuring Outcomes- Governance/HR.
- Doorstep Banking Services by Public Sector Banks(PSBs): It is a part of EASE (enhanced access and service excellence) reforms that aims to provide convenience of banking services to the customers at their doorstep.
News: The Ministry of Education will be organising a two-day conclave on School Education in the 21st Century under Shikshak Parv Initiative.
- Shiksha Parv Initiative: It is being celebrated from 8th September- 25th September, 2020 to felicitate the teachers and to take New Education Policy 2020 forward.
- Under this, the Ministry will be organizing a series of webinars on NEP and its implementation.
- In these webinars, various important themes of NEP will be discussed by experts.Each theme will target different sets of stakeholders of the education system which will be useful for all schools, teachers, parents, students as well.
News: The centuries old tradition of Rogan art is facing an unprecedented challenge due to pandemic.
- Rogan Art: The word Rogan means “Oil” in Persian.It is an art of cloth printing practiced in the Kutch District of Gujarat.
- How did the art came to India? The art was started by the Khatris, a Muslim community who came to India from Sindh, Pakistan.
- Process: In this art, Castor oil is heated and cast into cold water and the thick residue is then mixed with natural colours.Then, using a stylus or blocks, this resultant paint is meticulously transferred on to a cloth to make floral, animal (peacock) and geometric patterns.
News: Ministry of Tourism organises a webinar titled “Punjab- A historic perspective” under Dekho Apna Desh Webinar Series.
- Punjab: It is called ‘the land of Five Waters’ referring to the rivers Jhelum, Chenab, Ravi, Sutlej, and Beas.
- Who controlled it? Much of the frontier was occupied by Maharaja Ranjit Singh also known as Sher-e-Punjab in the early 19th century and then taken over by the East India Company when it annexed the Punjab in 1849.
- Important Festivals of Punjab: Teej, Lohri, Basant Panchami, Baisakhi and Hola Mohalla.
- Popular dance forms: Bhangra and Giddha.
- Important tourist attractions: Kali Temple, Baradari Garden, Sheesh Mahal, Gurudwara Dukh Niwaran Sahib, Qila Mubarak complex, Gobindgarh fort and Wagah border.
- Golden Temple: It is a major pilgrimage destination for devotees from around the world.The Gurdwara is built around a man-made pool (sarovar) that was completed by the fourth Sikh Guru, Guru Ram Das in 1577.Guru Arjan, the fifth Guru of Sikhism requested Sai Mir Mian Mohammed, a Muslim Pir of Lahore to lay its foundation stone in 1589.
- Virasat-e-Khalsa: It is a museum of Sikhism which celebrates 500 years of the Sikh history and the 300th anniversary of the birth of Khalsa, based on the scriptures written by the tenth Sikh guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji.
- Partition Museum: It is a public museum located in the town hall in Amritsar, India.The museum aims to become the central repository of stories, materials and documents related to the post-partition riots that followed the division of British India into two independent countries: India and Pakistan.
News: Living Planet Report 2020 has been released
Living Planet Report
- Released by: World Wildlife Fund. It is published every two years since 1998.
- It is based on the Living Planet Index and ecological footprint calculations.
Key Takeaways from Living Planet Report 2020
- There has been a reduction of 68% in the global wildlife population between 1970 and 2016.
- 75% of the Earth’s ice-free land surface has already been significantly altered, most of the oceans are polluted, and more than 85% of the area of wetlands has been lost during this period.
- The most important direct driver of biodiversity loss has been land-use change, primarily the conversion of pristine habitats into agricultural systems.
- The highest biodiversity loss due to land use change globally has been found in Europe and Central Asia at 57.9%, followed by North America at 52.5%, Latin America and Caribbean at 51.2%, Africa at 45.9% and Asia at 43%.
- One of the most threatened biodiversity globally has been freshwater biodiversity.
- The largest wildlife population loss has been in Latin America (94%)
News: The Ministry of Defence has put forward a new policy raising the cap of foreign direct investment through approval in the defence sector to 74%.
- Foreign investment in the Defence Sector will be subjected to scrutiny on ground of National Security.
- Under the existing policy, the defence industry can bring FDI up to 49% under the automatic route, and above it under government route.