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April 4th Current Affairs -Vignan IAS

NAXALISM
Five security personnel were killed and more than 12 injured in an encounter with Maoists in Sukma district of Chhattisgarh.
About:
Two of the dead were from the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF). One of them belonged to the elite Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA) of the CRPF, a unit specially trained for operations in areas affected by left-wing extremism.
a 400-strong team of security forces came under attack by a People’s Liberation Guerilla Army (PLGA) platoon in the Tarrem area near the Sukma-Bijapur border.
The attack comes close on the heels of the March 23 incident when five DRG personnel were killed as Maoists blew up a bus carrying security personnel with an IED in Narayanpur district.
Important Info :
Sukma district?
Sukma district is the southernmost district in Chhattisgarh.
It is located in the Bastar region, known for its tribal culture. It is mainly inhabited by Gonds and other tribals.
The district was carved out of Dantewada in 2012.
Sukma district borders with Odisha (Malkangiri district), Telangana (Bhadradri Kothagudem district) and Andhra Pradesh (East Godavari district).
One major river that flows through the district is Sabari.
The district is one of the least developed districts of India and is severely affected by Naxalism or Maoism.
Source : The Hindu
Defence & Security

 

 DECISION REVIEW SYSTEM (DRS)

The International Cricket Council’s (ICC) cricket committee has made changes to the way lbws will be decided under the Decision Review System (DRS).
About:
The “wicket zone”, the area of the stumps a ball must hit for an on-field not-out decision to be overturned, which previously ended below the bails, will now extend all the way up to the top. The committee also decided to retain the umpire’s call, an element that allows
the on-field decision to stand when there is no conclusive evidence to overturn it. A player can also ask the umpire whether an attempt was made to play the ball before deciding to review an lbw call.
Important Info :
What necessitated the review?
Under DRS, 50% of the ball should predictively hit the “wicket zone” for an on-field not-out decision to be reversed. Earlier, if the ball-tracking simulation showed the ball to be clipping the bails, the on-field verdict, even if it was not out, stood because the “wicket
zone” ended below the bails. This left both players and supporters exasperated because two balls, both predictively shown to be hitting the stumps, can both be out and not out depending on the on-field umpire’s call. The 50% test is also applied for balls projected to hit the outside of the off-stump or leg-stump.
Source : The Hindu
Sports

 April 4th Current Affairs -Vignan IAS

DIGITAL RMB
China in February 2021 launched the latest round of pilot trials of its new digital currency, with reported plans of a major roll-out by the end of the year and ahead of the Winter Olympics in Beijing in February 2022.
About:
Officially titled the Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP), the digital RMB (or Renminbi, China’s currency) is, as its name suggests, a digital version of China’s currency.
It can be downloaded and exchanged via an application authorised by the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), China’s central bank.
China is among a small group of countries that have begun pilot trials; others include Sweden, South Korea and Thailand.
How is it different from an e-wallet? 
Unlike an e-wallet such as Paytm in India, or Alipay or WeChat Pay, which are the two dominant apps in China, the Digital RMB does not involve a third party. For users, the experience may broadly feel the same. But from a “legal perspective”, the digital currency is “very, very different”. This is legal tender guaranteed by the central bank, not a payment guaranteed by a third-party operator. There is no third-party transaction, and hence, no transaction fee. Unlike e-wallets, the digital currency does not require Internet connectivity.
The payment is made through Near-field Communication (NFC) technology. Also, unlike non-bank payment platforms that require users to link bank accounts, this can be opened with a personal identification number. 
Important Info :
Significance
While several countries have been experimenting with digital currencies, China’s recent trials in several cities have placed it ahead of the curve. The central bank-issued digital RMB will turn the logic of decentralised cryptocurrencies on its head, without the privacy and anonymity they offer, by giving regulators complete control over transactions. There are global motivations as well.
Source : The Hindu
Economy

 April 4th Current Affairs -Vignan IAS

H-1B VISA RULE
USA President Joe Biden has allowed a Trump-era H-1B visa rule to expire.
About:
Last June, the administration of former President Donald Trump, a Republican, halted the issuance of non-immigrant work visas of several types, including the skilled worker visa, or H-1B. At the time, the White House had stated that the aim of the policy was to stop foreign workers from cornering American jobs during the economic distress and consequent shortage of economic opportunities brought on by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While the original order was valid until December 31, 2020, it was extended by the Trump administration to be valid until March 31, 2021. Now, the 46th and current U.S. President, Democrat Joe Biden, has allowed the
ban on H-1B visa issuance to expire, potentially bringing relief to a large number of Indian nationals, especially IT workers who are prospective applicants for the visa.
Important Info :
Statistics
Until now, the U.S. issued 85,000 H-1B visas annually, of which 20,000 went to graduate students and 65,000 to private sector applicants, and Indian nationals would garner approximately 70% of these.
Source : The Hindu
International

 April 4th Current Affairs -Vignan IAS

INFLATION TARGETING
On the last day of the financial year 2020-21, the Finance Ministry announced that the inflation target for the five years between April 2021 and March 2026 will remain unchanged at 4%, with an upper tolerance level of 6% and a lower tolerance level of 2%.
About:
This is the retail inflation target that will drive the country’s monetary policy framework and influence its decision to raise, hold or lower interest rates. India had switched to an inflation target-based monetary policy framework in 2015, with the 4% target kicking in from 2016-17. Many developed countries had adopted an inflation-rate focus as an anchor for policy formulation for interest rates rather than past fixations with metrics like the currency exchange rate or controlling money supply growth. Emerging economies have also been gradually adopting this approach. In adopting a target for a period of five years, the central bank has the visibility and the time to smoothly alter and adjust its policies in order to attain the targeted inflation levels over the medium term, rather than seek to achieve it every month.
Source : The Hindu
Economy

 

April 4th Current Affairs -Vignan IAS

SOFT SIGNAL PROTOCOL
The soft signal protocol for outfield catches, which was in the news during the India-England series, was not adjudicated on in the recent meeting of the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) cricket committee.
About:
According to the International Cricket Council’s rules, a ‘soft signal’ is a “visual communication by the bowler’s end umpire to the third umpire (accompanied by additional information via two-way radio where necessary) of his/her initial on-field decision prior to initiating an Umpire Review.”
In most cases, the third umpire upholds the ‘soft signal’ (out or not out) of the on-field umpire if there is no conclusive evidence to overturn the first verdict.
Source : The Hindu
Sports