Home Daily Current Affairs Aug 04, 2021

Aug 04, 2021: Current affairs for UPSC/State PSC

This section contains daily current affairs taken from all major news papers and magazines like - The Hindu, Indian Express, PIB, Live Mint, RSTV etc.

These current affairs are written in a easy to remember format and are useful for competitive exams like - UPSC Civil Services, UPPSC, BPSC, MPPPSC, State PSCs and other competitive examinations.

Permanent Forum of People of African Descent

The UN General Assembly approved a resolution establishing a Permanent Forum of People of African Descent to provide expert advice on addressing the challenges of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance.

The forum will also serve as a platform for improving the safety and quality of life and livelihoods of people of African descent and their full inclusion in the societies where they live.

Read More: Permanent Forum of People of African Descent

Social Issues

Special Drawing Rights

The governing body of the International Monetary Fund has approved a $650 billion expansion in the agency's resources to support economically vulnerable countries battling the coronavirus pandemic and the economic downturn it has caused.

The Board of Governors approved the expansion of its reserves known as Special Drawing Rights, the largest increase in the institution's history.

The new reserves will be credited to IMF member countries in proportion to their existing quotas with the agency.


What are "Flex fuel vehicles" ?

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari urged automakers to roll-out Flexible fuel vehicles capable of running on 100% ethanol into the Indian market within a year's time.

India plans to achieve 20% ethanol blending by 2025.

As of now, the CAFE-2 norms and BS-VI stage II norms are set to come into effect in 2022 and April 2023 respectively.


Exercise Talisman Sabre

Australia is keen that India join its biggest war games, biennial "Exercise Talisman Sabre" in 2023.

Talisman Sabre 2021

Talisman Sabre 2021, which just concluded, was the largest bilateral combined training activity between the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and the U.S. military and saw the participation of approximately 17,000 military personnel from seven nations on land, air and sea.

The other countries include Canada, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea and U.K.

Malabar naval exercise

The Quad group of countries comprising India, Australia, Japan and the U.S. are set to hold the annual Malabar naval exercise 2021 off the coast of Guam ( US island territory in Western Pacific) end August.

Australia was included in the Malabar 2020.


An annual bilateral naval exercise conducted by the Indian Navy and the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN). The exercise has been held annually since 1994

Samudra Shakti

Recently, India and Indonesia have carried out the bilateral maritime exercise "Samudra Shakti" in the Bay of Bengal.

Garuda Shakti

Garuda Shakti is the joint military exercise between India and Indonesia.


Corporate Average Fuel Efficiency (CAFE-2) Regulations

As of now, the CAFE-2 norms and BS-VI stage II norms are set to come into effect in 2022 and April 2023 respectively.

They aim at lowering fuel consumption of vehicles by lowering Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, thus serving the twin purposes of reducing dependence on oil for fuel and controlling pollution.

The idea of CAFE is to push manufacturers to achieve fuel efficiency targets by producing and selling more fuel-efficient models, including electric vehicles.

The CAFE standards were first notified in 2017 by the Union Ministry of Power (MoP) under Energy Conservation Act, 2001.

The regulation is in accordance with the fuel consumption standards of 2015 that aim to increase fuel efficiency of vehicles road by 35% by 2030.

The regulation was introduced in two target phases: Carbon dioxide emission target of 130 gram/kilometre by 2022-23 and 113 g/km 2022-23 onwards.

The norms are applicable for petrol, diesel, Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) passenger vehicles.


Bharat Stage (BS) Norms (BS-VI Stage II)

As of now, the CAFE-2 norms and BS-VI stage II norms are set to come into effect in 2022 and April 2023 respectively.

Bharat Stage (BS) emission standards are laid down by the government to regulate the output of air pollutants from internal combustion engine and spark-ignition engine equipment, including motor vehicles.

These standards are targeted at making improvements in three areas - emission control, fuel efficiency and engine design.

The central government has mandated that vehicle makers must manufacture, sell and register only BS-VI (BS6) vehicles from 1st April, 2020.

BS-VI is equivalent to Euro-VI norms currently in place across countries in Europe.

As per BS-VI emission norms, petrol vehicles will have to effect a 25% reduction in their NOx, or nitrogen oxide emissions.

Diesel engines will have to reduce their HC+NOx (hydro carbon + nitrogen oxides) by 43%, their NOx levels by 68% and particulate matter levels by 82%.

Sulphur content in fuel is a major cause for concern. BS-VI fuel's sulphur content is much lower than BS-IV fuel.

Sulphur content is reduced to 10 mg/kg max in BS-VI from 50 mg/kg under BS-IV.


India Digital Ecosystem of Agriculture (IDEA)

In order to create Agristack, the department is in the process of finalising "India Digital Ecosystem of Agriculture (IDEA)" which will lay down a framework for Agristack.

The IDEA would help in laying down the architecture for the Agristack in the country and that would serve as a foundation to build innovative agri-focused solutions leveraging emerging technologies.

This Ecosystem shall help the Government in effective planning towards increasing the income of farmers in particular and improving the efficiency of the Agriculture sector as a whole.

As a first step in this direction Government has already initiated building federated farmers' database that would serve as the core of the envisaged Agristack.

Leading Technology/Agri-tech/StartUp companies were identified and invited to collaborate with the GoI to develop Proof of Concepts (PoC) based on small portions of data from the federated Farmers' database.

Social Issues

Kala Sanskriti Vikas Yojana (KSVY)

No grant under Kala Sanskriti Vikas Yojana (KSVY). has been cancelled due to Covid pandemic.

Ministry of Culture has issued guidelines for holding cultural events/activities in virtual/online mode under various scheme components of Kala Sanskriti Vikas Yojana (KSVY).

Kala Sanskriti Vikas Yojana (KSVY), a central sector scheme, is an umbrella scheme under the Ministry of Culture for the promotion of art and culture in the country.

The ministry implements many schemes under KSVY, where the grants are sanctioned/approved for holding programs/activities.

1) Scheme of Financial Assistance for Promotion of Art and Culture.
2) Scheme of Financial Assistance for Creation of Cultural Infrastructure.
3) Scheme for Safeguarding the Intangible Cultural Heritage, which aims to promote the 13 intangible cultural heritage of India, recognised by the UNESCO.

From India the Intangible Cultural Heritages added into this list include:

1) Tradition of Vedic chanting
2) Ramlila, the traditional performance of the Ramayana
3) Kutiyattam, Sanskrit theatre
4) Ramman, religious festival and ritual theatre of the Garhwal Himalayas.
5) Mudiyettu, ritual theatre and dance drama of Kerala
6) Kalbelia folk songs and dances of Rajasthan
7) Chhau dance
8) Buddhist chanting of Ladakh: recitation of sacred Buddhist texts in the trans-Himalayan Ladakh region, Jammu and Kashmir.
9) Sankirtana, ritual singing, drumming and dancing of Manipur
10) Traditional brass and copper craft of utensil making among the Thatheras of Jandiala Guru, Punjab
11) Yoga
12) Nawrouz
13) Kumbh Mela

Art & Culture

Renaming of Jhansi Railway Station

The Govt. Of Uttar Pradesh has sent a proposal for renaming "Jhansi Railway Station" as "Veerangana Laxmibai Railway Station in District-Jhansi.

As per laid down procedure, the comments/views of agencies concerned have been sought. Further action will be taken after the comments/views are received from all the agencies concerned.

Social Issues

National Mobile Monitoring Software (NMMS) App

National Mobile Monitoring Software (NMMS) App and Area Officer Monitoring App was launched by the Minister of Rural Development on May, 21 2021.

This app is aimed at bringing more transparency and ensure proper monitoring of the schemes.

The NMMS App permits taking real time attendance of workers at Mahatma Gandhi NREGA worksites along with geo-tagged photograph.

The National Mobile Monitoring App is applicable for the Mahatma Gandhi NREGA workers for all the States/ Union Territories.

Area Officer Monitoring App facilitates them to record their findings online.

This app does it along with time stamped and go-coordinate tagged photograph for all the schemes of Department of Rural Development.

Gov. Schemes