21 June

International news Affairs

  • Today (21st June) is World Music Day (Fête de la Musique)
    • This day is celebrated in an attempt to promote peace and spread goodwill through melodies.
    • The day is originated in France in 1982 and is now observed in over 120 countries.
    • Aim of this day: To encourage free and accessible concerts or events for the public.
  • India is Afghanistan’s most reliable regional partner, the Pentagon has recently announced in its first Afghan report.
    • The report further stated that India provides training opportunities for Afghan officers.


  • China unveils World’s First Train that runs on Virtual Tracks

China has unveiled world’s first train that operates on a virtual track using sensor technology instead of metal rails. This Autonomous Rail Rapid Transit (ART) has been developed by China’s CRRC Zhuzhou Institute

Salient Features of World’s First Train that runs on Virtual Tracks:

  • The train can move at a maximum speed of 70 km/hour. Instead of railway tracks, the train runs on rubber tyres.
  • The 30­metre train has three carriages as of now and can carry 300 passengers. More carriages can be added – taking the total capacity up to 500 passengers.
  • This train is equipped with sensors that allow it to read the dimensions of roads and plan its own route.
  • It is environment friendly as it is powered by electricity. On a full charge, the train can travel for distances up to 40 km.
  • China plans to build a 6.5­kilometre ART line through downtown Zhuzhou for this new train and operations will start some time in 2018.

Railway facts:

♦ The Qinghai Tibet Railway, China – World’s highest train journey.

♦ Beipanjiang River Railway Bridge, China – World’s highest railway bridge

♦ India is building world’s highest rail bridge in Jammu and Kashmir over river Chenab


National news Affairs

  • 3rd International Yoga Day is being celebrated today with participation of Crores of people around the world.
    • PM Narendra Modi participated in International Yoga Day celebrations in Lucknow along with UP CM Yogi Adityanath and Governor Ram Naik.
    • Speaking at the third edition of the festival, Modi said the UN had accepted his proposal in record time to celebrate June 21 as International Yoga Day.
    • Modi also described yoga as a “free life insurance”.
  • Under Kaushalya Karnataka scheme, the Karnataka government is going to launch a skill development programme for providing vocational training to domestic workers, which includes people employed as cooks, house help and gardeners.
    • The month-long certification programme,  aims to help workers learn standardised skills in their line of work to enable them to access better employment opportunities.
  • The Karnataka government has re-introduced garbage bins in Bengaluru after seventeen years.
    • Bengaluru’s municipal corporation will install 2,232 pairs of bins for wet and dry waste across the city at a cost of over ₹4 crore.
    • Note : Earlier, Bengaluru followed a dustbin-free policy and garbage was collected by municipal workers from door-to-door.
  • Mumbai will get a suite of floating restaurants by 2018.
    • These restaurants will be located on multiple decks of a ship sailing between Gateway of India and Girgaum Chowpatty.


New Appointments

  • Saudi Arabia has relieved Muhammad bin Nayef as Crown Prince, replacing him with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud’s son Mohammed bin Salman.
    • Note : Salman, who is now first in line to the throne, was also named Deputy Prime Minister.
  • India has re-nominated Justice Dalveer Bhandari for another term as a Judge at the International Court of Justice, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations
    • Bhandari was elected in 2012 and his current term runs through February 2018.
    • Note: The ICJ elections will be held in November and if elected, Bhandari will serve another term of nine years.


People in News

  • Oscar-winning Hollywood actor Daniel Day-Lewis, known for films like Lincoln, My Left Foot and Gangs of New York, has announced his retirement from acting.
    • Phantom Thread, scheduled to release on December 25, is likely to be Daniel’s last film.



  • Padma Shri-awardee Predhiman Krishan Kaw (69), widely considered the father of India’s nuclear fusion programme, has passed away.
    • He founded the Institute for Plasma Research (IPR),Gandhinagar, which built India’s first tokamak fusion device.
  • Italian fashion designer Carla Fendi (79), the former President of the luxury fashion brand Fendi, passed away today.
  • Veteran actor Amrit Pal (76) passed away.
    • Pal, who made his Bollywood debut with the Jeetendra-Sridevi starrer film ‘Jaal’, was known for his negative roles.


Banking, Business & Economic news

  • The Royal Canadian Mint has unveiled a specially designed two-dollar coin, or ‘toonie‘.
    • This is world’s first glow-in-the-dark coin to enter circulation.
    • The coin features two people paddling under the Northern Lights.
    • The coin, created to mark the 150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation, is also the world’s first coloured bimetallic coin.
  • The government has asked banks and post offices to deposit demonetised ₹500 and ₹1,000 notes collected by December 30, 2016, with the RBI within 30 days.
    • Further, cooperative banks have also been allowed to exchange old notes collected by them by November 14, 2016.
    • Entities that don’t submit the notes will have to provide reasons for the same.
  • Mumbai is the most expensive Indian cityfor expatriates and is ranked above major cities like Paris, Canberra, Seattle and Vienna, a report by consulting firm Mercer revealed.
    • Globally, Mumbai was ranked 57 on the list while New Delhi was ranked 99.
    • Further, the capital of Angola, Luanda was named the costliest city globally for expats followed by Hong Kong.
  • The first cargo flight of the Afghanistan-India air freight corridorcarrying Afghan goods to India landed in New Delhi today.
    • The flight from Kabul to Delhi was packed with 60 tonnes of Afghan plants with medicinal uses.
    • The new air corridor aims to boost trade between India and Afghanistan to $1 billion in three years.


Science & Technology

  • Estonia will be opening the world’s first-ever data embassynext year in Luxembourg, to keep backup files of its vital information on cloud servers and double secure its data digitally.
    • Luxembourg has been chosen as the location for the embassy, since it has capabilities to provide a high level of security for the stored data, Estonian PM Jüri Ratas said.
  • June 21 marks the beginning of summer in Earth’s Northern Hemisphere, referred to as the ‘summer solstice’, the year’s longest day and shortest night.


Current Sports Affairs


  • Anil Kumble stepped down as Team India coach today amid reports of a rift with Virat Kohli Following his, BCCI has named its general manager MV Sridhar as the supervisor for the Windies tour.
    • Meanwhile, Sanjay Bangar and R Sridhar are set to continue as the Batting Coach and Fielding Coach respectively.
    • Note: Under Kumble, India won Test series against West Indies, New Zealand, England, Bangladesh and Australia.