Daily Current Affairs - 24-09-2021

The International Day of Sign Languages was observed on September 23, 2021 to raise awareness regarding the importance of sign language.

Key facts

Theme of the day

Theme of the International Day of Sign Languages, 2021 was declared by the World Federation of the Deaf. The theme is- “We Sign For Human Rights”. The theme highlights how each of us, deaf and hearing people, can work together to promote the recognition of our right of using sign languages in all areas of life.


First ever International Day of Sign Language was observed on September 23, 2018 across the world, with the theme “With Sign Language, Everyone is Included!”. The day was celebrated as part of the International Week of the Deaf, which is observed during September 24 to 30. The International Week of the Deaf was first celebrated in the year 1958 and has evolved into a global movement of deaf unity since then.

Who proclaimed the day?

The International Day of Sign Languages (IDSL) was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

Pension regulator Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) is set to observe National Pension System (NPS) Diwas on October 1, 2021.

Key Points

Aim of the campaign

Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA)

PFRDA is the regulatory body working under the jurisdiction of Ministry of Finance. It looks after overall supervision and regulation of pension across India. It is the regulator of National Pension System and also ensures orderly growth & development of the pension market.

Members of PFRDA

It consists of a chairperson and six members. Out of 6 members, at least three shall be whole-time members. Members are appointed by the Central Government.

Which act was passed to set up PFRDA?

Interim Pension Fund Regulatory & Development Authority (PFRDA) was established on August 23, 2003 by a resolution passed by Government of India in order to promote, develop and regulate pension sector. Later, in September 2013, Pension Fund Regulatory & Development Authority Act was passed and was notified in February 2014.

International start-up hubs ranking 2021 was recently compiled and published by Start-up Genome for its annual Global Start-up Ecosystem Report 2021.

Key Points

About the report

This report ranks the leading 140 start-up ecosystems on the basis of seven success factors like Talent, Performance and Connectedness.

Most attractive destination

As per the report, London is the most attractive destination to set up a tech start-up outside the Silicon Valley. Its overall ecosystem is valued at USD 142.7bn. London is also among one of the best cities for access to funding, quality and activity in the investment ecosystem, globally.

Where does Indian Start-ups stand?

According to the report, Indian start-ups have raised USD 12.1 billion in the first half of year 2021. It demonstrates the rapid growth of India as the global hub for tech & innovation. India has produced 24 unicorns in 2021, as of August 2021.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to announce the rollout of the Pradhan Mantri Digital Health Mission (PM-DHM) across the nation on September 27, 2021.

About PM-DHM

Unique digital health ID

This health ID will comprise of all the health records of each individual. It will be created with the help of details such as Aadhar and mobile number in order to generate a unique ID for them.

National digital health ecosystem

Under this scheme, a national digital health ecosystem will be created by means of provision of a wide-range of data, information & infrastructure services, and duly leveraging open & interoperable standards-based digital systems. It will also provide security, confidentiality and privacy of personal information related to health.

States running the National Digital Health Mission

The National Digital Health Mission is currently in its pilot phase in the union territories of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Chandigarh, and Daman & Diu, Lakshadweep, Ladakh and Puducherry.

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has published a new report titled “Climate Indicators and Sustainable Development: Demonstrating the Interconnections” on September 22, 2021.

Highlights of the report

Aim of the WMO report

WMO published its report with the aim of demonstrating the connections between global climate and SDGs. This goes far beyond the SDG 13 for climate action. Report also champions the need of greater international collaboration, which is required to achieve the SDGs. It also seeks to limit the global warming to less than 2 °C or even 1.5 °C by the end of the current century.

Climate Indicators

  1. Carbon dioxide concentration
  2. Temperature
  3. Ocean acidification
  4. Ocean heat content
  5. Sea-ice extent
  6. Glacier mass balance and
  7. Sea-level rise.

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) released its “Deposits with Scheduled Commercial Banks – March 2021 data” on September 23, 2021.


Institutional category

Among the institutional categories, household sector has 64.1 per cent share in total deposits. Individuals, including Hindu Undivided Families (HUFs), are the major constituent of the household sector. They have contributed about 55.8 per cent in aggregate deposits.

Non-financial corporations category

Bank deposits of non-financial corporations has increased by 18.8 per cent during 2020-21. In March 2021 itself, their share in total deposits increased to 16.2 per cent.

Which banks contributed the most?

Metropolitan branches of banks accounted for more than half of total deposits. Their total share stands at 59.6 percent of incremental deposits during 2020-21 as opposed to 43.2 per cent in 2020.

States that contributed the most

Three major states namely Maharashtra, UP and Karnataka accounts for one-third of total household sector’s outstanding deposits. During 2020-21, they accounted for more than 40 per cent of the total incremental deposits.

Share of private sector banks

Share of private sector banks in total bank deposits still continue to increase at the cost of public sector banks. It accounts for 30.5 per cent as compared to 29.5 per cent in 2020.

Ministry of Defence has placed an order of worth Rs 7,523 crore in order to procure 118 Main Battle Tanks (MBTs) Arjun for the Indian Army.

Key Points

About MBT Mk-1A Arjun Tank

Who developed the MBT Arjun Mk-1A?

The MBT Arjun Mk-1A has been designed and developed by Combat Vehicles Research & Development Establishment (CVRDE), along with other laboratories of DRDO. It was developed within two years that is 2010-12.

Significance of the order

According to defence ministry, production order to Chennai’s Heavy Vehicles Factory will bring in large avenue in defence manufacturing for more than 200 Indian vendors including MSMEs. It will also open up the employment opportunities for 8,000 people.

Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) World Giving Index 2021 was published recently, in which India found the place among top-20 generous countries.

Key findings of the report

Scenario across the world

Which is the most generous country?

The most generous country across the world is Indonesia. Indonesia has been ranked at first position in the CAF Index this year. Indonesia is followed by Kenya, Nigeria, Myanmar, Australia, Ghana, New Zealand, Uganda, Kosovo and Thailand in that order. In the year 2019, US was ranked at top position.

United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) have signed an agreement on Food security on September 23, 2021.


Significance of the MoU

This agreement is a strategic partnership between WFP and ICRISAT because both are aligned to their vision of food security, especially for poorest and vulnerable communities. MoU was signed in light of worsening global hunger, threatening food security, nutrition & livelihood of people because of growing climate change crises and shocks like Covid-19 pandemic.


ICRISAT stands for “International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics”. It is an international organization that conducts agricultural research for rural development. It is headquartered in Patancheru, Hyderabad. Other regional centres include Bamako in Mali, Nairobi in Kenya Niamey in Niger, Kano in Nigeria, Lilongwe in Malawi, Addis Ababa in Ethiopia. ICRISAT was founded in 1972 while its charter was signed by the FAO and the UNDP.

About World Food Programme (WFP)

WEP is the food-assistance wing of the United Nations and world’s largest humanitarian organization. It is the largest organisation that focuses on hunger & food security and the largest provider of school meals. It was founded in 1961, with headquarter in Rome.

India and Australia held their first Joint Working Group (JWG) meeting on Coal and Mines on September 23, 2021 through Video conferencing.


India – Australia ties

Both the countries have built strategic trust on each year over the year. They established the diplomatic relations in the pre-Independence period with the opening of Consulate General of India as a Trade Office in 1941 in Sydney. Lieutenant-General Iven Mackay was appointed as the first High Commissioner to India, in March 1944. In 1945, first High Commissioner of India to Australia arrived to Canberra in 1945. Since then, relations since then have witnessed a significant thaw. In 2014, Australia signed a uranium supply deal with India.

Economic relationship

As of 2016, India’s exports to Australia is approximately at US$ 4.6 billion while India’s import from Australia was at US$ 11 billion. India mainly exports Passenger Motor Vehicle & machinery; Medicaments & Refined Petroleum; and Pearls, Gems & Jewellery to Australia while India mainly imports Coal, Non-monetary Gold, Wool, Copper, Fertilizers & Education related services from Australia.

UNICEF released its new report titled “Fed to Fail? The crisis of children’s diets in early life” on September 23, 2021.

Key Findings

Impact of Covid-19

COVID-19 pandemic still continues to disrupt the essential services and is driving more families into poverty. According to the report, pandemic is also affecting how families feed their children. In several countries, families have been forced to reduce the purchases of nutritious food. Because of this, percentage of children consuming minimum recommended number of food groups reduced by a third in 2020 as compared to 2018.

Vulnerability of Children

Children aged under two are most vulnerable to all forms of malnutrition like wasting, stunting, micronutrient deficiencies, overweight and obesity. As per UNICEF estimates, more than half of children aged under 5 are vulnerable to wasting, globally.

According to the head of U.N. food agency, David Beasley, 16 million people in Yemen “are marching towards starvation”.

Key Points


On March 1, 2021, at a virtual pledging conference that was co-hosted by Sweden and Switzerland, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres had urged for $3.85 billion for Yemen in 2021. But countries pledged less than half the amount that is $1.7 billion.

Meeting on Yemen’s humanitarian crisis

This meeting was held on September 22, 2021 on the line of U.N. General Assembly’s annual leaders’ gathering. It raised about $600 million. Meeting was hosted by European Union and co-hosted by Sweden & Switzerland.

Yemen Crisis

Yemen has been undergoing a civil war since 2014, when Iran-backed Houthi rebels took control of the capital of Yemen called Sanaa as most of the northern part of Yemen. They also forced the President of Yemen, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, to flee to Saudi Arabia. Later, a Saudi Arabia-led coalition entered the war in March 2015, backed by the United States. They tried to restore President Hadi to power. Despite several air campaign and ground fighting, war has deteriorated into a stalemate and caused a humanitarian crisis. The U.S. has suspended its direct involvement in this conflict.

The Patents (Amendment) Rules, 2021 came into effect on September 21, 2021 by amending the Patents Rules 2003.

Key Points

Why patent fees have been reduced?

SIPP Scheme

Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) launched the scheme, Facilitating Start-ups Intellectual Property Protection (SIPP) in order to provide facilitators with filing and processing of their applications. Professional charges of such facilitators are reimbursed in accordance with the provisions of the scheme.