Daily Current Affairs and GK | 1 and 2 January 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 02 Jan 2023 17:08 PM IST

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Topic: Sports

1. Magnus Carlsen wins all three world chess championship titles.

  • He has won all three world chess championship titles for third time in his career.
  • He achieved this feat by winning both the World Rapid and World Blitz chess titles in Almaty.
  • No other player has ever won the Rapid and Blitz titles in the same year.
  • Carlsen won the World Classical Championship in November 2021 by defeating grandmaster Ian Nepomniachtchi.
  • According to the International Chess Federation, his 2882 rating in 2014 is the highest in the history of chess.
  • He has currently 2859 rating in classic and 2839 rating in rapid.
  • Carlsen became the youngest person to be ranked number one in the world in 2010.
  • Gambit, move, Stalemate, Check, Grand master, Castling, etc. are some important terms related to Chess.

Topic: Space and IT

2. SpaceX has launched 54 Starlink satellites onboard its Falcon 9 launch vehicle.

  • These satellites have been launched under Starlink’s upgraded network.
  • The launch marks the first of Starlink’s upgraded network.
  • SpaceX has launched these satellites from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.
  • The satellites will be deployed in low-Earth orbit. The satellites will enable the company to add customers to internet service.
  • Falcon 9 first-stage booster has completed 10 missions. These include 5 Starlink missions, GPS III Space Vehicle 04, GPS III Space Vehicle 05, Inspiration4, Ax-1, and Nilesat 301.
  • As per reports, SpaceX will launch 7,500 satellites this decade. It will raise the number of Starlink low-orbiting satellites to over 10,000 during the next ten years.
  • SpaceX already has 3,500 first-generation Starlinks.

Topic: Indian Economy

3. Government collected nearly one lakh 50 thousand crore rupees as GST revenue in December 2022.

  • As per Finance Ministry, GST revenues in December 2022 are 15% higher than the GST revenues in December 2021.
  • During December 2022, revenue from the import of goods was 8% higher than revenue from the import of goods during December 2021.
  • During December 2022, revenue from the domestic transaction was 18% higher than the revenue from the domestic transaction during December 2021.
  • As per the Ministry, the total revenue of the Centre is 63,380 crore rupees and the States is 64,451 crore rupees after regular settlements in December, last year.

one lakh 50 thousand crore rupees as GST revenue

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: State News/ Assam

4. Assam has merged four districts before the January 01 deadline of delimitation in the state.

  • Four districts have been approved to merge with the districts from which they were carved out.
  • Tamulpur district would be re-merged with Baksa district. It was formed on January 23, 2022.
  • Hojai district and Biswanath district would be re-merged with Nagaon and Sonitpur respectively. They were created in 2015.
  • Bajali district would be re-merged with Barpeta. It was created on January 12, 2021.
  • The mergers will lower down the number of districts in Assam from 35 to 31.
  • Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said the re-merger would be a transition phase.
  • Assam presently has 14 Lok Sabha and 126 Assembly constituencies.
  • Election Commission has recently on 27 December announced the delimitation of Assembly and Parliamentary constituencies in Assam.
  • It has put a ban on the creation of new administrative units in the state from 1 January 2023 till the completion of the delimitation in the state.

Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

5. 108th Indian Science Congress will be addressed by PM Modi via video conferencing on 3 January.

  • This year's theme is “Science and Technology for Sustainable Development with Women's Empowerment.”
  • Increasing the number of women in teaching, research and industry will be discussed, along with equal access to women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics education, and economic participation.
  • A special program will be organized to showcase the contribution of women in the field of science and technology, in which lectures by eminent women scientists will be held.
  • Along with the Indian Science Congress, many other programs will be also organized.
  • Children's Science Congress will be organized to develop scientific interest and temperament among children.
  • Farmer’s Science Congress will provide a platform to improve the bio-economy and attract youth towards agriculture.
  • Tribal Science Congress will also be organized.
  • It will focus on the empowerment of tribal women as well as scientific demonstrations of indigenous ancient knowledge systems and practices.
  • The first session of the Science Congress was held in 1914.
  • The 108th annual session of the Indian Science Congress will be held at the Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University in Maharashtra, which is also celebrating its centenary year this year.

Topic: Important Days

6. International Year of Millets (IYM) - 2023 began with focused activities.

  • The Government of India under the leadership of the Prime Minister had submitted the proposal for the International Year of Millets (IYM) - 2023, which was accepted by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
  • Apart from this, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has also shared his vision to establish India as a 'Global Hub for Millets' as well as to make IYM-2023 a 'Jan Andolan'.
  • Several evidences for the consumption of millet during the Indus Valley Civilization suggest that it was one of the first crops to be cultivated in India.
  • Millet is currently produced in more than 130 countries.
  • Earlier in April 2018, millet was promoted as a "nutritional grain".
  • After this, the year 2018 was declared the National Millet Year.
  • The aim was to publicize it on a large scale and generate demand.
  • The global market for millets is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 4.5 percent during the forecast period, 2021-2026.
  • The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations organized the opening ceremony of the International Millet Year- 2023 on 6 December 2022 in Rome, Italy.
  • Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) and Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare will participate in the trade exhibition organized in Belgium during January, 2023.
  • The ministry has planned 15 activities over 15 days in January, which include engaging sports persons, nutritionists, and fitness experts through video messages.

International Year of Millets (IYM) - 2023

(Source: News on Air)

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Topic: International Appointments

7. Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has taken oath as the 39th president of Brazil after the 2022 general election.

  • Lula defeated Jair Bolsonaro in October. He will start 3rd presidential term.
  • Lula has returned to power after corruption allegations that led to his imprisonment for a year and a half.
  • Lula governed Brazil for two consecutive terms between 2003 and 2010.  
  • Brazil:
    • It is the largest country in South America. It is the fifth-largest country in the world by area.
    • Its capital is Brasilia and the currency is the Brazilian Real. It is a federal presidential constitutional republic.

Topic: International News

8. India and Austria will sign five agreements on 02 January 2023.

  • One of these five agreements is an agreement on 'migration and mobility'. India will sign a “Comprehensive Migration and Mobility Partnership Agreement” (MMPA) with Austria on 2 January 2023.
  • The second agreement is on the ‘Working Holiday’ program. This will enable Indian students in Austria to work for 6 months.
  • The agreement on migration and mobility will benefit students, academics, professionals and business people in Austria.
  • External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar is on a trip to Cyprus and Austria.  
  • This is the first trip to Austria by an Indian Foreign Minister in 27 years.
  • Mr. Jaishankar and Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg also held a meeting with Foreign Ministers of Czech and Slovakia, under the “Slavkov” trilateral format for the Central European countries.
  • Austria:
    • It is located in the southern part of Central Europe.
    • It shares a boundary with Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.
    • It is a land-locked country. Its capital is Vienna and currency is Euro.
    • Alexander Van der Bellen is the current President of Austria. Karl Nehammer is the current chancellor of Austria.

Topic: Defence

9. Defence Ministry is planning to procure 100 more K9-Vajra.

  • The Defense Ministry has started the process of procuring 100 more K9-Vajra-tracked self-propelled howitzers.
  • K9-Vajra was built in India by Larsen & Toubro (L&T) using technology transferred from Hanwha Defense of South Korea.
  • In November, the Defence Ministry issued the ‘Request For Proposal’ to L&T.
  • The Army deployed one regiment of K-9 Vajra self-propelled howitzers in eastern Ladkah in 2020.
  • The Dhanush, K-9 Vajra and M777 Ultra Light Howitzers have increased the reach of artillery firepower on the northern borders.
  • Earlier, the Indian Army had signed a contract to procure 100 K9 Vajra in May 2017.
  • The K9 Vajra is a 155 mm, 52-calibre tracked self-propelled howitzer. It is generally used in deserts.

Topic: Personality in News

10. Former Pope Benedict XVI passed away at the age of 95.

  • Former Pope Benedict XVI died in the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery in the Vatican.
  • In 2013, He was the first pope to resign in the last 600 years. His resignation paved the way for Francis' election.
  • He led the Catholic Church for fewer than eight years until 2013.
  • Benedict was the first German pope in centuries when he was elected in 2005. He was one of the oldest popes ever elected.
  • He will be remembered as a renowned theologian within the Catholic Church.
  • The pope is head of the Catholic Church around the world. The current pope is Francis.

Topic: State News/ Karnataka

11. Karnataka's Kalasa-Banduri project got approval from the government.

  • On 28 December, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar stated that the Center has given environmental clearance for the Kalasa-Banduri (or Bandura) drinking water project in Karnataka.
  • The Central Water Commission (CWC) has approved a revised Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the project which was submitted by the state government to the Center.
  • The CWC allowed Karnataka to take 3.9 TMC of its share of water from the Mahadayi river under the Kalasa-Banduri project.
  • The project proposes to divert water from the Mahadayi River (also known as Mandovi) into the Malaprabha River from the Kalasa and Banduri canals.
  • The project aims to provide drinking water facilities to 13 towns of Dharwad, Belagavi, Bagalkot and Gadag, which are part of the northern parts of Karnataka.
  • Earlier in 2018, Maharashtra had opposed the diversion of water proposed by Karnataka before a tribunal.
  • Goa also supported the claim, because the river is a lifeline for the state.
  • The Mahadayi River originates in Karnataka and has a basin area of 2,032 km². Out of the total area, 375 sq km is in Karnataka, 77 sq km in Maharashtra, and the remaining 1580 sq km in Goa.

Topic:  State News/ Maharashtra

12. Maharashtra’s New Economic Advisory Council will be headed by Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran.

  • On 29 December, Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announced this at the Legislative Council in Nagpur.
  • The state government is forming an Economic Advisory Council to make Maharashtra a trillion-dollar economy.
  • It will function as a private research organization with a focus on issues related to agriculture, banking, engineering and education.
  • The state government will also focus on certain 'aspirational' regions in order to increase the state's human development index.
  • Earlier in December, Chandrasekaran was also appointed as the Chair of B20 India to lead the trade agenda during India's G20 presidency.
  • In October 2016, Chandrasekaran joined the Tata Sons board. In January 2017, he was promoted to the post of chairman.
  • He became the first non-Parsi to lead the companies in the Tata Group.
  • After completing his five-year term as chairman earlier this year, he was re-appointed as the chairman of Tata Sons for a further five-year term, till 2027.
  • Chandrasekaran is also the chairman of Air India after the airline was acquired by the Tata Group earlier in 2022.

Topic: National News

13. Ethylene Glycol (Quality Control) Order 2022 issued by Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers.

  • Department of Chemical and Petrochemicals with Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers issued this order on 29 December 2022.
  • The notification has been issued owing to an allegation by Uzbekistan regarding death of 18 children in Samarkand due to consumption of a medicinal syrup Dok1 Max made by an Indian drug company.
  • The Indian drug company is Marion Biotech which is based in Noida, Uttar Pradesh. The syrup manufactured by the company contained ethylene glycol.
  • Under ‘Conformity to standards and compulsory use of standard mark’, the order stated that the specific good or articles shall conform to corresponding Indian Standard and shall bear the standard mark under a license from the BIS as per Scheme-I of Schedule-II of BIS (Conformity Assessment) Regulations, 2018.
  • BIS has been made the certifying and enforcing authority.
  • As per the order, any person who contradicts the provisions of this order shall be punishable.
  • In October 2022, WHO raised alarm regarding 4 India-made cough syrups that caused deaths in Gambia.
  • Ethylene Glycol has a formula (CH2OH)2. It is ordorless, colorless, flammable, viscous liquid. It has a sweet taste but is toxic in high concentrations.
  • It is used as a raw material in the manufacture of polyester fibres and for antifreeze formulations.
  • According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ethylene glycol is also found in many products like hydraulic brake fluids, stamp pad inks, ballpoint pens, solvents, paints, cosmetics and plastics.

Topic: Agriculture and allied sectors

14. Export of agricultural and processed food products increased by 16% during April-November FY 2022-23.

  • As per the provisional data by the DG of Commercial and Intelligence Statistics, the overall export of APEDA products was 17.43 billion dollars during this period.
  • The processed fruits and vegetables have registered a growth of 32.6% whereas fresh fruits recorded a 4% growth compared to corresponding period in FY 2021-22.
  • Basmati rice exports have increased by 39.26% to $ 2.87 billion. Non-basmati rice registered a modest growth of 5%.
  • Promotion of all agri products, except tea, coffee, spices and marine products comes under mandate of APEDA.
  • The entire export in Agriculture and allied sector was valued at $50.21 billion during 2021-22.
  • Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA):
    • It works under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
    • It was established under the APEDA Act of 1985.
    • It replaced the Processed Food Export Promotion Council (PFEPC).
    • It also functions as the secretariat to the National Accreditation Board (NAB) for implementation of accreditation of the Certification Bodies under National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP) for organic exports.
    • Its headquarters are located in New Delhi.
    • It consists of a Chairman appointed by the Central government.
    • Chairman of APEDA: Madhaiyaan Angamuthu
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