Current affairs (6TH & 7th JANUARY)

Thursday, January 7th, 2021


ThPrime Minister Narendra Modi has inaugurated the 450-km Kochi-Mangaluru natural gas pipeline built at a cost of Rs 3,000 crore via video conferencing.

The event marks an important milestone towards the creation of One Nation One Gas Grid. Natural gas pipeline network will be doubled in 5-6 years and CNG stations will be raised to 10,000 from current 1,500.

The pipeline will carry natural gas from Kochi in Kerala through Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kasargod districts to Mangaluru in Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka.

It has been built by GAIL (India) Limited. It will carry natural gas from the LNG Regasification Terminal at Kochi. The pipeline will supply environment-friendly PNG.

The pipeline grid will help improve clean energy access as well as also aid in the development of city gas projects


The Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ and Union Minister WCD and Textiles Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani jointly launched Toycathon-2021 and the Toycathon Portal.

Toycathon is being organized to develop India as the global Toy manufacturing hub.

Toycathon will provide a platform to conceptualize innovative toys based on the Indian value system which will inculcate the positive behaviour and good value among the children.

The Toycathon will be based on themes:

  • Indian Culture, History, Knowledge of India and Ethos;
  • Learning, Education and Schooling;
  • Social and human values;
  • Occupations & specific fields;
  • Environment;
  • Divyang
  • Fitness and sport;
  • Out of the box, creative and logical thinking and

The 40th Indian Scientific Expedition to Antarctica was flagged off on January 05, 2021, from Mormugao Port, Goa.

The chartered ice-class vessel MV Vasiliy Golovnin has been chosen for the prestigious 40th Indian Scientific Expedition to Antarctica (ISEA) mission journey and will reach Antarctica in 30 days.

The expedition journey has 43 members onboard. India’s major fuel supplier, Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IOCL) has supplied Jet A1 fuel, lubes and Marine Gas Oil (MGO) for the mission.

Apart from its scientific mission, this expedition shall carry out the humanitarian responsibility of bringing back the 48-strong winter crew from their 15-month tenure, and resupply the bases with food, fuel, provisions and spares for operations and maintenance of life support systems.


The Central Government has set up a high-level group to build South Asia-focused energy security architecture.

The high-level group, named the South Asia Group for Energy (SAGE), will be headed by former Union Power Secretary Ram Vinay Shahi.

SAGE has been set up under the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA)-run think tank Research and Information System for Developing Countries (RIS).

To achieve a balanced and optimal development of energy infrastructure through mutual understanding and cooperation, by promoting, initiating and facilitating effective policy dialogue and capacity building on a bilateral, sub-regional and regional basis for energy and related issues, among South Asian countries.

Amar Sinha, former economic relations secretary in the MEA and India’s former ambassador to Afghanistan;

Preeti Saran, former secretary east in MEA; Chandan Kumar Mondol, director commercial at NTPC Ltd, India’s largest power generation utility;

Rakesh Nath, former chairman of Central Electricity Authority, the apex power sector planning body; Anil Sardana, managing director, Adani Power; and

Deepak Amitabh, chairman and managing director, PTC India Ltd, the country’s largest electricity trader.


The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has capped the amount of trans fatty acids (TFA) in oils and fats to 3% for 2021 and 2% by 2022 from the current permissible limit of 5% through an amendment to the Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Restriction on Sales) Regulations.

It was in 2011 that India first passed a regulation that set a TFA limit of 10% in oils and fats, which was further reduced to 5% in 2015.

The country’s food regulatory body notified the amendment on December 29, more than a year after it issued a draft on the subject for consultation with stakeholders.

The revised regulation applies to edible refined oils, vanaspati (partially hydrogenated oils), margarine, bakery shortenings, and other mediums of cooking such as vegetable fat spreads and mixed fat spreads.

Trans fat regulation, that aims to limit the amount of “trans fat”, fat-containing trans fatty acids — in industrial food products, has been enacted in many countries.

These regulations were motivated by numerous studies that pointed to significant negative health effects of trans fat.

Trans fats are associated with increased risk of heart attacks and death from coronary heart disease.

As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), approximately 5.4 lakh deaths take place each year globally because of intake of industrially-produced trans-fatty acids. .The WHO has also called for global elimination of trans fats by 2023.

  • FSSAI Chairperson: Rita Teaotia.
  • FSSAI Chief Executive Officer: Arun Singhal.
  • FSSAI Founded: August 2011.
  • FSSAI Headquarters: New Delhi.

The New Development Bank (NDB) has signed loan agreements worth USD 646 million with the Government of India for two road projects in Andhra Pradesh.

Each project costs USD 323 million. These projects will improve mobility and connectivity to the socioeconomic centres, enhance transport efficiency, improve road safety and riding quality, and provide all-weather accessibility for the State’s road users.

First project: The first project is the Andhra Pradesh Roads and Bridges Reconstruction Project. It comprises widening 1,600 km of State Highways to double lane and reconstructing dilapidated bridges on the State Highway network.

Second project: The second project is Andhra Pradesh Mandal Connectivity and Rural Connectivity Improvement Project.

It comprises widening 1,400 km of district roads to double lane and reconstructing dilapidated bridges on the district road network.

  • New Development Bank Headquarters Location: Shanghai, China.
  • New Development Bank President: Marcos Prado Troyjo.
  • New Development Bank Founder: BRICS.

Google Cloud has announced the elevation of Karan Bajwa as its new leader for the Asia Pacific. Presently, Bajwa leads Google Cloud in India.

He will lead all regional revenue and go-to-market operations for Google Cloud, including on Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and Google Workspace. He succeeds Rick Harshman who leaves the organisation for a new opportunity.

At present, Bajwa is based in Gurgaon but will relocate to Singapore in 2021. He will continue to lead Google Cloud in India until a new senior leader for the business is appointed.

  • CEO of Google: Sundar Pichai
  • Headquarters: California, United States.

Alexander Ellis has been appointed British high commissioner to India and will take up the key role later this month.

He has held several posts, including deputy national security adviser in the cabinet office, director-general in the department for exiting the European Union, and the British ambassador to Portugal.

Ellis succeeds Philip Barton. In August 2020, Barton was promoted as permanent undersecretary in the UK’s newly formed foreign, commonwealth and development office.


Khelo India Ice Hockey Tournament organised at Chiktan in Kàrgil, Ladakh. For the first time, the women team of Chiktan also participated in the Khelo India Games in Kargil district.

There are 13 teams from different villages of Chiktan participating in the tournament, which include 11 men’s teams and 2 women’s teams.

The tournament was inaugurated by SDM Shakar Chiktan and the Chief Guest of the event Kacho Asgar Ali khan in the presence of ZPEO Chiktan Ghulam Rasool along with in-charge police post-Chiktan.

  • Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports: Kiren Rijiju.
  • Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh: Radha Krishna Mathur.