‘Sandhayak’, the first of the four Survey Vessels Project
⇒ ‘Sandhayak’, the first of the four Survey Vessels (Large) project being built for the Indian Navy, was launched in Kolkata on December 05, 2021.
Designed and developed by:
These Vessels have been designed and developed by Defence Public Sector Undertaking, Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) Limited, which is among the leading warship building companies in India.
- These survey ships are capable of full scale coastal & deep-water hydrographic survey of Ports & Harbour approaches and determination of navigational channels & routes.
- These ships are also capable of undertaking survey of maritime limits and collection of Oceanographic & Geographical data for Defence applications, thus boosting the maritime capabilities of the country.
- These ships are propelled by two Marine Diesel Engines combined with Fixed Pitch Propellers and fitted with Bow & Stern Thrusters for manoeuvring at low speeds during surveys.
- In their secondary role, these ships would be capable of performing roles such as Search & Rescue and Disaster Relief, besides serving as Hospital ship with limited facilities during emergencies.
- The ships will have a retractable Hangar for stowage of a Utility helicopter.
- The contract for building four survey ships was signed between MoD and GRSE on 30 October 2018 at a total cost of Rs 2435 Crs.
- As per build strategy adopted by GRSE, first ship is being built at GRSE Ltd and construction of balance three ships is envisaged at M/s L&T Shipbuilding, Kattupalli.
Digital Payment Utsav
⇒ The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) hosted a unique event – ‘Digital Payment Utsav’ as part of the week-long ‘Azadi Ka Digital Mahotsav’, on 5 December 2021.
- The day celebrated the journey and rise of digital payments in India and brought together leaders from the Government, banking sector, fintech companies and startups.
The event held at the India Habitat Centre witnessed the unveiling of the DIGIDHAN logo.
DIGITAL PAYMENTS SANDESH YATRA:
During the event, awareness campaign called DIGITAL PAYMENTS SANDESH YATRA was also launched with digital payments anthem titled ‘Chutki Baja ke’ (cashless, touchless, paperless).
- Top Banks and Fintechs were awarded & recognized in various categories for their achievements in FY 2019-20 and FY 2020-21 towards the promotion of digital payments.
- During the event, MeitY also recognised the contribution of four payment system aggregators for onboarding street vendors under the PM SVANidhi Scheme.
The event saw the launch of innovative solutions like:
Payments On the Go: Wearables are re-defining the true paperless contactless payments, catalysing them further, City Union Bank launched Rupay-on-the-Go.
Inclusive Credit for All: Credit cards represent the next big in fintech and contactless is truly the way forward. To drive it to the next level, India Post Payments Bank-Punjab National Bank, Kotak Bank, YES Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, ICICI Bank, Indian Bank, Bank of Maharashtra, and City Union Bank launched Contactless Credit cards on the RuPay network.
Empowering Small Merchants: India has close to 1.5 crore retail stores/ Kiryana stores. Union Bank announced an android-based SOFTPOS mobile app for point of sales, which will further the cause of digital payment adoption.
21st India – Russia Annual summit
⇒ President of the Russian Federation, Mr. Vladimir Putin, paid a working visit to New Delhi on 06 December 2021 for the 21st India – Russia Annual summit with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.
The first meeting of the 2+2 Dialogue of Foreign and Defence Ministers and the meeting of the Inter-Governmental Commission on Military & Military-Technical Cooperation held in New Delhi.
- The leaders discussed regional and global developments, including the post-pandemic global economic recovery, and the situation in Afghanistan. They agreed that both countries share common perspectives and concerns on Afghanistan and appreciated the bilateral roadmap charted out at the NSA level for consultation and cooperation on Afghanistan.
- They noted that both sides shared common positions on many international issues and agreed to further strengthen cooperation at multilateral fora, including at the UN Security Council.
A Joint Statement titled India-Russia: Partnership for Peace, Progress and Prosperity was released following the Summit which covers the state and prospects of bilateral ties.
» Coinciding with the visit, several Government-to-Government Agreements and MoUs, as well as those between commercial and other organizations of both countries, were signed in different sectors such as trade, energy, science & technology, intellectual property, etc.
- 28 agreements were signed in different sectors including trade, energy, science and technology, intellectual property, outer space, geological exploration, cultural exchange, and education.
» An Agreement on Program of the Military-Technical Cooperation from 2021-2031 was signed.
- This 10-year Defence Cooperation Program outlines the ongoing defence cooperation and future possible cooperation between the two countries.
» President Putin extended an invitation to Prime Minister Modi to visit Russia for the 22nd India-Russia Annual Summit in 2022.
The last annual summit was held during Modi’s visit to Vladivostok, Russia in September 2019. India currently has 2+2 ministerial dialogues only with Australia, Japan and the US.
64th Founding Day of DRI
⇒ The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), the apex anti-smuggling intelligence and investigation agency functioning under the aegis of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC), celebrated its 64th Founding Day on 04 December 2021.
- DRI was founded on 4 December 1957.
Utkrisht Seva Samman, 2021:
On this occasion, DRI ‘Utkrisht Seva Samman, 2021’ was awarded to Shri B. K. Aggarwal, an officer of the 1963 batch of the then Indian Revenue Service (Customs & Central Excise) for his distinguished and committed service.
The Union Finance Minister unveiled the “Smuggling in India Report 2020-21” which analyses organised trends on topics such as smuggling of gold, narcotics drugs and psychotropic substances, wildlife etc., commercial frauds and international enforcement operations & cooperation.