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PRAVAHINI WEEKLY CURRENT AFFAIRS JANUARY SET 1 2023

PRAVAHINI WEEKLY CURRENT AFFAIRS JANUARY SET 1 2023

Neelesh Singh 10 MIN

PREFACE

It gives us great pleasure to release the monthly edition of the PRAVAHINI – Monthly e- Compendium & Weekly e-Periodicals of Current Affairs. The magazine’s members have shown considerable cooperation as well as devotion. We at success mantra.in working tirelessly to create this magazine and bring it to you with a great sense of gratitude.

The January -2023 eBook covers the current events that happened in the month of October. Current Affairs is a crucial component of any competitive exams including CLAT, AILET, DU-LLB, HM, CAT, IAS, PCS, SSC, CUET, Banking, MBA, and other competitive examinations.

Current Affairs play the more significant role in many competitive and government exams. It holds the power of making or breaking your chance of success. Therefore, the candidates should cover the Current Affairs thoroughly and smartly.

The PRAVAHINI January -2023 eBook is divided into different sections keeping in mind the need of various exams. The sections covered namely International, National, Economy, Ecology and Environment, Science & Technology, Legal Affairs, Sports, States News Makers and few others.

We would also be pleased to receive any suggestion that could assist us with the upcoming editions.

Success Mantra (GTB Nagar, Delhi) Website:www.successmantra.in Mail Id: [email protected]

 

NEW INTEGRATED FOOD SECURITY SCHEME

The Central Government of India recently announced the launch of a new integrated food security scheme, which will provide free food grains to 81.35 crore beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) for the year 2023.

  • The Cabinet has decided to implement this central sector scheme in order to fulfill the vision of “One Nation-One Price-One Ration” under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
  • This commitment of the government is intended to benefit the most vulnerable 67% of the population, which is 81.35 crore persons covered under the NFSA.
  • According to the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, the government has a social and legal commitment to ensuring that the people of India have access to food and nutritional security, through the availability of quality food grains.
  • The new scheme aims to ensure effective and uniform implementation of the National Food Security Act, and to provide accessibility, affordability, and availability of food grains for the poor.
  • It will also enable uniform implementation of portability under the “One Nation One Ration Card” program, which allows ration cards to be used anywhere in the country.

 

CABINET APPROVES NATIONAL GREEN HYDROGEN MISSION

The Union Cabinet, led by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved the National Green Hydrogen Mission.

  • Mission aims to make India a global hub for the production, utilization, and export of green hydrogen and its derivatives.
  • The initial outlay for the mission will be Rs. 19,744 crore, including Rs. 17,490 crore for the Strategic Interventions for Green Hydrogen Transition (SIGHT) program, 1,466 crore for pilot projects, Rs. 400 crore for research and development, and Rs. 388 crore for other mission components.

The National Green Hydrogen Mission is expected to have wide-ranging benefits, including:

  • Creation of export opportunities for green hydrogen and its derivatives
  • Decarbonization of the industrial, mobility, and energy sectors
  • Reduction in dependence on imported fossil fuels and feedstock
  • Development of indigenous manufacturing capabilities
  • Creation of employment opportunities
  • Development of cutting-edge technologies
  • Projected Outcomes by 2030

 

By 2030, the National Green Hydrogen Mission is expected to achieve the following outcomes:

  • Development of green hydrogen production capacity of at least 5 million metric tons per year, with an associated renewable energy capacity addition of about 125 GW.
  • Over Rs. 8 lakh crore in total investments
  • Creation of over 6 lakh jobs.
  • Cumulative reduction in fossil fuel imports of over Rs. 1 lakh crore
  • Abatement of nearly 50 million metric tons of annual greenhouse gas emissions

WHAT IS INDUSTRIAL POLICY OF INDIA?

The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) in India is currently working on a new industrial policy that aims to increase financing options for industry and promote the “Made in India” brand.

  • This policy, titled the “Statement on Industrial Policy 2022 – Make in India for the world,” has been circulated to various ministries for their input and comments.
  • It is expected to address the challenges and issues facing industry in India by implementing policy measures that will foster an innovative and competitive industrial ecosystem.

The proposed policy has identified six main objectives:

  • Competitiveness and capability: The policy aims to increase competitiveness and capability within the industrial sector in India.
  • Economic integration and global value chain: The policy aims to increase economic integration and move up the global value chain.
  • Attractive investment destination: The policy aims to make India an attractive investment destination.
  • Innovation and entrepreneurship: The policy aims to nurture innovation and entrepreneurship within the industrial sector.
  • Global scale and standards: The policy aims to achieve global scale and standards within the industrial sector.

RAJNATH SINGH INAUGURATED SIYOM BRIDGE

Defense minister Rajnath Singh has inaugurated the Siyom bridge in Arunachal Pradesh, along with 27 other infrastructure projects completed by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO).

  • Built at a cost of 724 crore rupees, these projects will hugely augment India’s border infrastructure, mostly along the Chinese border, from Ladakh to Arunachal.
  • 21 other bridges, three roads and three additional infrastructure projects in Arunachal Pradesh, J&K, Ladakh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, Punjab and Rajasthan, were virtually inaugurated by Rajnath Singh from the Siyom bridge site.

About the Siyom bridge:

  • The 100-meter ‘Class-70’ steel arch superstructure on the Aalo-Yingkiong road between West Siang and Upper Siang districts is one of the 28 projects completed by the BRO at a cost of Rs 724.3 crore to bolster border infrastructure.

 

ASSAM RECORDED ZERO-POACHING OF ENDANGERED RHINO

For the first time in nearly 45 years, Assam recorded zero poaching of endangered rhinos in 2022. These animals, known for their valuable horns, were poached 191 times in Assam between 2000 and 2021.

  • The highest number of incidents occurred in 2013 and 2014, with 27 rhino deaths each reported. In 2020 and 2021, two rhinos were killed each year. The last time no poaching was reported in Assam was in 1977.
  • Previously, the forest and police departments worked independently to address wildlife crimes such as poaching.
  • The task force was established to coordinate the fight against poachers. Bhupendra Yadav reported that the coordinated efforts have been effective, stating, “We have intelligence both from forest and police sources about activities and movements of poachers, which helps in action against them.”

KALASA BANDURI NALA PROJECT

Despite opposition from Goa, Karnataka Water Resources minister Govind Karjol announced that the state will proceed with the Kalasa-Banduri project on the River Mahadayi.

  • The project, which aims to divert water from the Mahadayi to provide drinking water for the districts of Belagavi, Dharwad, Bagalkot, and Gadag, has been the subject of controversy for decades.
  • In 2020, the Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal allocated 13.42 tmcft of water from the river to Karnataka, a decision that has been challenged in the Supreme Court by Goa and Maharashtra.

What is the Kalasa-Banduri Nala Project?

  • The Kalasa Banduri Nala project involves the construction of barrages against the Kalasa and Banduri streams, tributaries of the Mahadayi, in order to divert water towards Karnataka’s parched districts.
  • The project was first proposed in the 1980s, but it has yet to be implemented due to a dispute between Karnataka, Goa, and Maharashtra.

WHAT IS ASPIRATIONAL BLOCKS PROGRAMME (ABP)?

Recently, the Aspirational Blocks Programme (ABP) was launched during the 2nd National Conference of Chief Secretaries held from 5th January to 7th January, 2022.

What is the Aspirational Blocks Programme?

  • It is a development initiative aimed at improving the performance of areas that are lagging on various development parameters.
  • It was announced in the Union Budget 2022-23. It will initially cover 500 districts across 31 states and Union Territories, with over half of these blocks located in six states – Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal.
  • The ABP is based on the Aspirational District Programme (ADP).

What is the Aspirational District Programme?

  • It was launched in 2018 which aims to transform districts that have shown relatively lesser progress in key social areas. Aspirational Districts are those districts in India that are affected by poor socio-economic indicators. It covers 112 districts across the country.

 

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

 

WHAT IS TITLE 42 & WHY IT WAS IMPLEMENTED?

The United States recently announced that it will extend COVID-19 pandemic-era restrictions, known as Title 42, to expel migrants from Nicaragua, Cuba and Haiti caught crossing the U.S.-Mexico border back to Mexico.

  • The move would block more nationalities from seeking asylum in the United States, and raises questions about the implications of this policy expansion and its legality.
  • Title 42 is an immigration policy that was implemented by the U.S. health authorities in March 2020, during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The policy was implemented to allow border agents to rapidly send migrants crossing theS.-Mexico border back to Mexico or other countries.
  • The policy was implemented under Republican former President Donald Trump, whose administration sought to greatly curtail both immigration.

 

CROATIA SWITCH TO CURRENCY 'EURO'

Croatia has taken two major steps towards further integration with the European Union (EU) by adopting the euro and joining the Schengen zone.

  • The country officially became the 20th member of the eurozone on January 1st, and the removal of land border controls with neighboring Slovenia and Hungary marks its inclusion in the Schengen zone.
  • Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković hailed the adoption of the euro as a “historic moment” that would better protect Croatian citizens from financial crises.
  • The euro was already widely used in the country, with about 80% of bank deposits denominated in the currency and many shops and restaurants in tourist areas accepting payment in euros.
  • The adoption of the euro is expected to improve borrowing conditions in Croatia and shield its economy at a time when inflation is soaring worldwide. In November, Croatia’s inflation rate was 13.5%, higher than the 10% in the eurozone.

Joining the Schengen Zone

  • The inclusion of Croatia in the Schengen zone, which allows for passport-free travel between 26 European countries, is expected to boost tourism in the country.
  • The tourism industry accounts for 20% of Croatia’s GDP, and the end of land border controls with Slovenia and Hungary is expected to make it easier for tourists to visit the country’s popular Adriatic coastline.

CHINA LAUNCHED ASIA'S 1ST HYDROGEN TRAIN

China’s CRRC Corporation Ltd. launched a hydrogen urban train, and it is the first in Asia and the second such train in the world. Germany introduced green trains a few months back. The hydrogen trains have a speed of 160 km per hour and the operational range without refueling is 600 km.

  • The trains launched by Germany have a record of 1175 km range set. The Indian Railway on the other hand is moving fast to induct the ‘World’s Greenest Train’ soon.
  • India will get its first-ever Indigenous Hydrogen trains by December 2023. Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnav informed that Indian Railways is working on new environment-friendly trains and the engineers are designing them.

China Becomes First Country in Asia to Launch Hydrogen-Powered Train- Key Points

  • The hydrogen train was developed on the basis of a high-speed platform and includes 4 cars with it. CRRC also introduced such a shunting locomotive in 2021 and hydrogen trams were produced earlier in the mid-2010s.
  • The train will also get Digital solutions from the CRRC including GoA2 automation, component monitoring sensors, and 5G data transmission equipment.

INDIA & UK YOUNG PROFESSIONALS SCHEME

The governments of India and the UK marked Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on January 9, 2023 by launching the Young Professionals Scheme, which allows up to 3,000 degree-holding citizens aged between 18 and 30 to live and work in each other’s countries for a period of two years.

 

  • The scheme, which was announced in November at the G20 summit in Bali, is part of the India-UK Migration and Mobility Memorandum of Understanding signed in May 2021.
  • Successful candidates will be able to search for job, educational, or cultural opportunities in their host country, or simply visit for the two-year period.
  • The scheme allows for exchange visas for up to 3,000 individuals per year. It is not necessary for candidates to have a job lined up when they apply for the visa.

WHAT IS FREEDOM CAUCUS GROUP?

On January 4 and Thursday January 5, Republicans in the House of Representatives failed to elect a leader, with a faction of holdouts, largely from the ultra-conservative, hard-right Freedom Caucus, refusing to vote for nominee Kevin McCarthy (R-CA).

  • This marks the first time since 1923 that a nominee of the majority party in the House hasn’t been able to win the first vote for the position of Speaker.
  • The Freedom Caucus, which comprises roughly 30 members and emerged from the Tea Party movement, is known for its fiscally conservative and right-wing populist positions.
  • This includes a desire for lower taxes, budget cuts, decentralization of government powers, and opposition to immigration. The caucus has also been labeled “nativist,” “anti-globalist,” and “white supremacist” by observers.
  • In 2016, the Freedom Caucus threw its support behind Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and has been described as “more populist and nationalist, but less bound by policy principles.” However, despite Trump’s own support for McCarthy as Speaker candidate, many in the Freedom Caucus have opposed McCarthy’s bid.

 

ECONOMIC AFFAIRS

 

RBI LAUNCHED UTKARSH 2.0

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has launched Utkarsh 2.0, the second phase of its medium-term strategy for strengthening regulatory and supervisory mechanisms.

  • Utkarsh 2.0 builds upon the foundation laid by Utkarsh 2022, which was launched in July 2019 and covered the period from 2019 to 2022.
  • Utkarsh 2.0 will guide the RBI over the period from 2023 to 2025 and includes six vision statements that are designed to improve the performance of the RBI’s statutory and other functions, enhance its relevance and significance at the national and global levels, and improve its internal governance, infrastructure, and human resources.
  • Utkarsh 2.0 is the second phase of the RBI’s medium-term strategy for strengthening regulatory and supervisory mechanisms.
  • It builds upon the foundation laid by Utkarsh 2022, which was launched in July 2019 and covered the period from 2019 to 2022.
  • Utkarsh 2.0 will guide the RBI over the period from 2023 to 2025 and includes six vision statements that are designed to improve the performance of the RBI’s statutory and other functions, enhance its relevance and significance at the national and global levels, and improve its internal governance, infrastructure, and human resources.

 

WHAT IS PURCHASING MANAGER'S INDEX (PMI)?

As per the S&P Global India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), the manufacturing sector in India had its most significant production growth in 13 months in December 2022.

  • For the October to December quarter, the PMI averaged 56.3, the highest in a year. It indicates that the manufacturing sector is performing well and may be contributing to job creation.

What is the Purchasing Managers Index?

  • It is a survey-based measure that asks the respondents about changes in their perception about key business variables as compared with the previous month.
  • The purpose of the PMI is to provide information about current and future business conditions to company decision makers, analysts, and investors. It is calculated separately for the manufacturing and services sectors and then a composite index is also constructed.
  • The PMI is a number from 0 to 100. A print above 50 means expansion, while a score below that denotes contraction. A reading at 50 indicates no change.
  • If the PMI of the previous month is higher than the PMI of the current month, it represents that the economy is contracting. It is usually released at the start of every month. It is, therefore, considered a good leading indicator of economic activity.

 

 

NATION'S 1ST FULLY DIGITAL BANKING STATE

Kerala has become the first state in India to enable digital banking in all eligible accounts. According to the State-Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC), the state now has at least one product enabled digitally in 3.76 crore accounts.

  • The state government, led by CM Pinarayi Vijayan, has implemented this move under the ‘Expanding and Deepening of Digital Payments Ecosystem’ scheme of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

Thrissur: The First District to Implement Digital Banking

  • In 2021, Thrissur became the first district in Kerala to implement digital banking under the scheme. This has been a major step towards digitization of the state’s economy, and the government is hopeful that this will lead to a significant boost in the state’s economy.

Kerala Fiber Optic Network (KFON)

  • The state government has been working on the Kerala Fiber Optic Network (KFON) project, which is aimed at providing cost-effective internet access to the public.

RBI ISSUED SOVEREIGN GREEN BOND FRAMEWORK

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has announced its plans to issue Sovereign Green Bonds worth Rs 8,000 crore in two tranches on January 25 and February 9. The proceeds of the bonds will be used to fund public sector projects aimed at reducing the carbon intensity of India’s economy.

  • The bonds will be sold in two denominations maturing in five years and ten years, worth Rs 4,000 crore each. They will be issued through Uniform Price Auctions and 5% of the total amount will be reserved for retail investors.
  • The bonds will also be eligible for Repurchase Transactions (Repo) and can be used as eligible investments for Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR) purposes.

Framework for Sovereign Green Bonds

  • In November of last year, the government released a framework for sovereign Green Bonds. The framework established a committee headed by the Chief Economic Adviser to select eligible projects for financing.
  • The payment of principal and interest on the bonds will not be dependent on the performance of the selected projects, meaning that investors will not bear any project-related risks.
  • The eligible expenditures for the bonds will be limited to government expenditures that occurred a maximum of 12 months prior to issuance, with the goal of allocating the proceeds to projects within 24 months of issuance.

 

AWARDS & HONOUR

 

WORLD UN-HABITAT'S AWARD 2023

Odisha won the UN-Habitat’s World Habitat Awards 2023 for Jaga Mission, a 5T initiative of the state.

  • The awards recognise and highlight innovative, outstanding and revolutionary housing ideas, projects and programmes from across the world.
  • The Jaga mission is the land titling and slum upgrading program that aims at empowering the lives of slum dwellers.

About the Jaga Mission

  • Jaga mission is the world’s largest land titling and slum upgrading program which aims at empowering the lives of slum dwellers.
  • Under the inspiring leadership of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, the Government of Odisha has set itself the ambitious target of becoming the first slum-free state in India and is leading the Jaga Mission programme to upgrade all of the state’s 2,919 slums.
  • In the last 05 years of the initiative, 1,75,000 families have been granted land tenure security. 100% households in 2,724 slums have been provided with pipe water connections, 707 slums transformed fully into Liveable Habitats, 100% households in 666 slums have individual toilets, and 8 cities have become slum-free.

ASSAM HIGHEST CIVILIAN AWARD 'ASOM BAIBHAV'

The Assam government has recently announced the recipients of three prestigious awards: “Asom Baibhav,” “Asom Sourav,” and “Asom Gourav” for the year 2022-2023. These awards recognize and honor individuals who have made significant contributions to the state and its people.

  • Asom Baibhav is the highest civilian award given by the Assam government and this year’s recipient is Dr. Tapan Saikia.
  • Saikia currently serves as the Head of Medical Oncology and Research Director at Prince Aly Khan Hospital and the Director of Oncology Sciences at the Jaslok Hospital & Research Centre in Mumbai.
  • In addition, he has worked as an MD and external examiner at AIIMS Delhi and Allahabad University. The Asom Baibhav award comes with a cash prize of Rs 5 lakhs and the recipient is entitled to medical treatment at government expense for the rest of their life.

 

SPORTS

MEN'S HOCKEY WORLD CUP 2023

  • Ahead of Men’s Hockey World Cup 2023, Odisha Chief Minister has inaugurated Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium, one of the largest hockey stadiums in Rourkela.

 

  • The 15th edition International Hockey Federation (FIH) Hockey World Cup 2023 will be held in Bhubaneswar and Rourkela from January 13 to 29.

What are the Key Points of the Hockey World Cup?

  • Conceived jointly by India and Pakistan as the premier standalone competition for hockey outside of the Olympics and approved by the International Hockey Federation in 1969, it still took 13 long years and four editions of the event to be held in the Indian subcontinent for the first time.
  • While the first edition in 1971 was allotted to Pakistan before being moved to Spain due to political and security issues, India was supposed to host in 1975 before governance issues forced it to be moved to Malaysia.
  • While the initial editions were held every two years, since 1982 the tournament has been held every four years, bisecting the Olympic cycle. Pakistan was the inaugural World Cup winner, defeating Spain in 1971.
  • The last World Cup hockey was played in 2018, where Belgium was the winner by defeating the Netherlands.

 

SANIA MIRZA ANNOUNCED HER RETIREMENT

Indian Tennis Player Sania Mirza (36-year-old), the former doubles World No. 1 , has confirmed her retirement from professional Tennis.

  • She announced that the Dubai Tennis Championships, a Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) 1000 event in Dubai in February 2023 will be her last match.

Career graph of Sania Mirza:

  • She has won six Grand Slam doubles titles
  • She won her first grand slam in 2009 by winning the Australian Open Mixed doubles title with Mahesh Bhupathi. The pair also won the French Open 2012.
  • She won her 3rd mixed doubles title at the US Open in 2014 with Brazil’s Bruno Soares.
  • Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis of Switzerland won 3 women’s doubles – Wimbledon 2015, the US Open 2015 and the Australian Open 2016 Mirza became the first Indian to win a WTA singles title in 2005.
  • She was ranked India’s No 1 in Singles from 2003 till her retirement from Singles in 2013.

 

 

IMPORTANT DATES & DAYS

STARTUP INDIA INNOVATION WEEK

The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) will be organizing the Startup India Innovation Week from January 10th to January 16th, 2023. This event is part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav celebrations and will take place in over 75 locations across the country.

  • Startup India Innovation Week 2023 aims to engage startup ecosystem stakeholders across the nation during 10 January-16 January and spur the spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation in India,” the Ministry of Commerce & Industry said in a release.

Start-up India Scheme

  • The Start-up India scheme was launched on January 16, 2016 by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade with the goal of supporting and promoting start-ups in India.
  • The scheme, which was inaugurated by the former finance minister Arun Jaitley, aims to remove restrictive state government policies such as the License Raj, foreign investment proposals, land permissions, and environmental clearances.

 

WORLD BRAILLE DAY OBSERVED ON JANUARY 4TH

Every year, World Braille Day is celebrated on January 4 by the United Nations and several other international organizations. The day is celebrated to create awareness of the importance of Braille as a means of communication in the realization of human rights for the blind.

  • The celebration of World Braille Day on January 4 is in honor of Louis Braille, the inventor of the Braille system.
  • Braille was born in France on January 4, 1809, and it was his development of the system that has allowed blind individuals to read and write, increasing their independence and access to education and employment opportunities.
  • The first World Braille Day was celebrated in 2019.

 

 

REPORTS AND INDEXES

FAO RELEASED FOOD PRICE INDEX

According to a report released by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on January 6, world food prices reached a record high in 2022; despite experiencing a ninth consecutive monthly fall in December.

  • The FAO’s food price index, which tracks international prices of the most globally traded food commodities, averaged 143.7 points in 2022, marking a 14.3% increase from 2021 and the highest level since records began in 1990.
  • The index had already gained 28% in 2021 from the previous year as the world economy recovered from the impact of the pandemic.
  • In December, the benchmark index fell to 132.4 points, compared with 135.00 points in November. This decline was attributed to a drop in the international price of vegetable oils, as well as some declines in cereal and meat prices, but was offset by slight increases in sugar and dairy prices.
  • Despite this month-on-month decrease, four of the FAO’s five food sub-indexes – cereals, meat, dairy, and vegetable oils – reached record highs in 2022, while the sugar subindex hit a 10-year high.

ELON MUSK BECAME THE 1ST PERSON TO LOSE $200 BN

Tesla and Twitter CEO Elon Musk became the first person to lose $200 billion from his net worth. Elon Musk has seen a drop of up to $137 billion in his wealth after a recent drop in Tesla Shares.

  • The shares of his electric car company are down nearly 65 percent. Elon Musk became the richest person in the world for the first time in January 2021 with a net worth of more than $185 billion.

 

  • However, he was replaced by Bernard Arnault, the chief executive of luxury brand Louis Vuitton’s parent company LVMH as the world’s richest man.

Twitter CEO Elon Musk Becomes First Person Ever to Lose $200 Billion- Key Points

  • Elon Musk has applied a move-fast-and-break-things approach such as firing staff then asking them to come back and applying content policies haphazardly to justify banning the accounts of some prominent journalists who cover him.
  • There are no big assets left after a decline in Tesla shares up to 65% in 2022 and the purchase of Twitter of a whopping $44 billion. Following these reports, Tesla has also announced a price drop in several of its models, offering a $7,500 discount for its Model 3 and Model Y vehicles.

 

 

SCIENCE & TECH.

WHAT IS K9 VAJRA?

The Defence Ministry has started the process for the procurement of 100 more K9-Vajra tracked self-propelled howitzers. The 100th gun was delivered to the Army in 2021.

What is K9-Vajra?

  • The K9 Vajra is a 155 mm, 52-caliber tracked self-propelled howitzer (a short gun for firing shells on high trajectories at low velocities) built in India by Larsen & Toubro (L&T) with technology transferred from South Korean defense major Hanwha Defense based on its K9 Thunder.
  • The K9 Thunder platform is made of all-welded steel armor protection material. The K9 gun has been developed under the ‘Buy Global’ programme of the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) where foreign companies are allowed to participate.

WHAT IS NATIONAL GEO-SPATIAL POLICY 2022?

The Ministry of Science and Technology has notified a National Geospatial Policy (NGP) 2022, with the goal of making India a world leader in the Global Geospatial Sector.

  • India's geospatial economy is expected to cross Rs 63,000 crore by 2025 at a growth rate of 12.8% and to provide employment to more than 10 lakh people.

What is Background?

  • In 2021, the Ministry of Science and Technology issued “Guidelines for acquiring and producing Geospatial Data and Geospatial Data Services including Maps”.

 

  • While the Guidelines deregulated the Geospatial sector by liberalizing Geospatial data acquisition/production/ access, the 2022 Policy takes it further by laying down an overarching framework for holistic development of the Geospatial ecosystem.

What is National Geospatial Policy 2022?

  • It is a citizen-centric policy based on Geo-Spatial technology, which seeks to strengthen the Geospatial sector to support national development, economic prosperity and a thriving information economy.

 

  • The policy is aimed to set up high resolution topographical survey and mapping, with a high-accuracy Digital Elevation Model (DEM) by 2030.

 

MISCELLANEOUS

 

INDIA'S 1ST UNDERWATER METRO SERVICE

India’s first underwater metro service, the Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation (KMRC) said that the East-West Metro Corridor project is expected to be completed by December 2023. With this, another feather is being added to the crown of Kolkata Metro, the first metro railway in the country.

  • Kolkata Metro, which started its journey in 1984, is being expanded to cover the whole city and its outskirts. The underwater metro, which will be running through the Hooghly River, will connect the twin cities of Howrah and Kolkata.

About the project:

  • Kolkata Metro Railway Corporation has taken up the difficult take of making the tunnel with the help of German machines and the best experts. Work inside the tunnel is still in progress.

 

  • As far as the cost of construction of the underground metro is concerned, it costs about Rs 120 crore per kilometer to build the tunnel but the manufacturing cost of the tunnel underwater, which is deep in the Hooghly river costs increased to around 157 crores per kilometer.

 

INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF MILLETS: 2023

The Government of India has sponsored the proposal for the International Year of Millets (IYM) 2023, which has been accepted by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

  • This has given the Indian Government the opportunity to celebrate the IYM and position India as the global hub for millets. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also shared his vision for the IYM to become a “People’s Movement”.

What are Millets?

  • Millets are small-seeded grasses that are often referred to as “Nutri-cereals”. Some common types of millets include sorghum (jowar), pearl millet (bajra), finger millet (ragi), little millet (kutki), foxtail millet (kakun), proso millet (cheena), barnyard millet (sawa), and kodo millet (kodon).
  • These grains are a staple cereal crop for millions of smallholder dryland farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia and offer a variety of benefits such as nutrition, income, and livelihood for farmers. They can also be used for food, feed, fodder, biofuels, and brewing.

 

WHAT IS HONEY MISSION & SWEET REVOLUTION?

Under the Honey Mission, 1 lakh and 75 thousand bee boxes have been distributed so far by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) after providing beekeeping training to 17 thousand 500 beneficiaries across the country.

  • As per the National Horticulture Board (NHB), Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Punjab, Bihar, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka were the top ten honey-producing states in 2021-22.

What is a Honey Mission?

  • It was launched in 2017 in line with the ‘Sweet Revolution’. Under the mission, the KVIC under Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises provides the farmers or beekeepers – Practical training about the examination of honeybee colonies,
  • Identification and management of bee enemies and diseases along with the management of bee colonies in all seasons. Acquaintance with apicultural equipment’s and Honey extraction and wax purification.

What is Sweet Revolution?

  • It is an ambitious initiative of the Government of India for promoting apiculture, popularly known as 'beekeeping'.
  • To provide a booster shot to the Sweet Revolution, the government launched the National Beekeeping and Honey Mission in 2020 (a central sector scheme under the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare) as part of the AtmaNirbhar Bharat scheme.

 

WHAT IS FLY ASH?

Recently, the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) clarified the compliance dates for the complete utilization of fly ash for Thermal Power Plants (TPP) in a new notification.

What is Fly Ash?

  • Fly ash is an unwanted unburnt residue of coal combustion in a coal thermal power plant. It is emitted along with flue gasses during the burning of coal in a furnace and collected using the electrostatic precipitators.
  • The fly ash collected with the help of precipitators is converted into a wet slurry to minimize fugitive dust emissions. It is then transported to the scientifically designed ash ponds through slurry pipelines.
  • Composition: Composition of fly ash depends upon the composition of coal being burnt. It may contain Beryllium, Arsenic, unburnt Carbon, Silicon Oxides, Dioxins, aluminum oxide, ferric oxide, calcium oxide, etc.

RANJAN GOGOI NEW BOOK 'CHIEF MINISTER'S DIARY NO.1'

Former Chief Justice of India and member of the Rajya Sabha Ranjan Gogoi has released a book titled ‘Chief Minister’s Diary No.1’ containing the account of events of the first year in office of Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. The book featured accounts of daily activities he undertook as a chief minister.

Notably:

  • Ranjan Gogoi is presently a member of the Rajya Sabha.
  • He served as the 46th Chief Justice of India for 13 months from 2018 to 2019.

Recent Book:

  • Fit At Any Age – Launched Retd. Air Marshal PV lyer
  • Miracles of Face Yoga – Mansi Gulati
  • Now You Breathe – Rakhi Kapoor
  • A book titled ‘Ambedkar: A Life – Shashi Tharoor
  • Forks in the Road: My Days at RBI and Beyond – C. Rangarajan
  • The Indian [email protected] Reminiscing the Voyage – Ranjit B Rai and Aritra Banerjee.

RECOVERY OF OZONE LAYER

According to a new U.N. report, earth’s protective ozone layer is slowly but noticeably healing at a pace that would fully mend the hole over Antarctica in about 43 years.

What are the Findings of the Report?

  • While this is an achievement, the scientists warned of the detrimental effects of geoengineering technologies such as stratospheric aerosol injection on the ozone layer.
  • Aerosol sprays, like other commonly used substances such as dry-cleaning solvents, refrigerants and fumigants, contain Ozone-Depleting Substances (ODS) including chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), halons, methyl bromide, carbon tetrachloride, and methyl chloroform.