Daily Current Affairs and GK | 13 April 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 13 Apr 2023 16:57 PM IST

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Topic: Geography

1. IMD predicted a normal monsoon despite El Nino.

  • The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said that rainfall will be 96% of the long-period average of 87 cm.
  • It means that 83.5 cm of rainfall will be received from June to September of this year.
  • IMD has predicted that the monsoon will be “normal” despite the possibility of El Nino conditions.
  • The long-period average has been calculated based on the data from 1971 to 2020.
  • India has received normal to above-normal rainfall in the last four years (2019 to 2022).
  • Northeast regions are expected to receive Normal to above-normal rainfall.
  • Rajasthan, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Maharashtra and Gujarat are likely to receive Normal to below-normal rainfall.
  • According to climatic models, El Nino conditions are likely to develop during the monsoon season of this year. The effect of El Nino will be felt in the second half of the season.
  • El Nino conditions means that rainfall will be below than normal.
  • IMD pointed out that two factors- Indian Ocean Dipole and the snow-covered area over the northern hemisphere and Eurasia can also influence the monsoon.
  • During this year’s monsoon, Positive Indian Ocean Dipole conditions are likely to develop.
  • The snow-covered area in the northern hemisphere will also be favourable for this year's monsoon.

monsoon will be “normal” despite the possibility of El Nino conditions

(Source: IMD)

Topic: Infrastructure and Energy

2. India’s first semi-high-speed regional rail service named ‘RAPIDX’.

  • National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) has named its first semi-high-speed regional rail services as ‘RAPIDX’.
  • NCRTC stated that the ‘X’ in the name represents next-generation technology and new-age mobility solutions, signifying speed, progress, youth, optimism, and energy.
  • The brand name ‘RAPIDX’ has been chosen because it is easy to read and pronounce in various languages.
  • The RAPIDX services will reduce the travel time between Delhi and Meerut.
  • NCRTC is planning to start the entire Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut corridor for the public by 2025. A 17-km long priority section between Sahibabad and Duhai will start from 2023.
  • NCRTC is planning to install solar panels on stations and depots and increase the use of blended power in traction.
  • NCRTC is a joint venture between the Union government and the states of Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh.

Topic: Reports and Indices/Ranking

3. India's International Aviation Safety Rating Category will remain in Category 1.

  • The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has received confirmation from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of USA that India's International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASS) category will continue to be published as Category 1.
  • The FAA had conducted an audit of India's DGCA from 25 to 29 October 2021, covering the areas of aviation operations, airworthiness and staff licensing under its IASA programme.
  • Final consultations took place on 25-26 April 2022.Assessment and follow-up are based on positive results.
  • On 12 April 2023, the FAA informed the DGCA that India meets the International Standards for Aviation Safety Inspection of the Chicago Convention.
  • Earlier, the last evaluation was done in July 2018.
  • The FAA commended the DGCA for demonstrating its commitment to ensuring effective safety oversight of India's aviation system.
  • Category 1 airlines are allowed to operate/expand their services to cities in USA and codeshare with US airlines.
  • In the recent ICAO audit in November 2022, India recorded an EI of 85.65 per cent as compared to the previous Effective Implementation (EI) of 69.95 per cent.
  • Thus, there was a significant improvement in the global ranking of India.
  • The FAA of the USA, under its IASA program, determines whether airlines of a country operating in the US, or intending to operate or codeshare with US airlines, comply with safety standards established by ICAO.

Topic: Personality in News

4. Dr. Zafrullah Chowdhury of Bangladesh has passed away at the age of 81.

  • On 11 April, Dr. Zafarullah Chowdhury, veteran freedom fighter and renowned public health activist, passed away in Dhaka.
  • Dr. Zafarullah Chowdhury, who was known for his expertise as a vascular surgeon and pioneering contributions to public health.
  • In 1972, he established Gonostha Kendra to provide affordable and quality treatment to the underprivileged.
  • In 1985, he won the Ramon Magsaysay Award in the Community Leadership category.
  • In 1992, he won the Right Livelihood Award for his outstanding work in the public health sector.
  • He was called the 'doctor of the poor' for his excellent work in providing health services to the poor.
  • In 1977, he was honored with the Independence Award, which is the highest civilian award in Bangladesh.

Dr. Zafrullah Chowdhury of Bangladesh

(Source: News on Air)

Topic: Awards and Prizes

5. Appasaheb Dharmadhikari will be given Maharashtra Bhushan.

  • Renowned social worker and reformer Dattatreya Narayan Dharmadhikari alias Appasaheb Dharmadhikari will be honored with the Maharashtra Bhushan Award by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on April 16.
  • On February 8, (2023) Appasaheb Dharmadhikari was nominated for the prestigious 2022 Maharashtra Bhushan Award.
  • Appasaheb Dharmadhikari was also awarded the Padma Shri in 2017.
  • Appasaheb's father and noted preacher-reformer Late Dr. Narayan Vishnu Dharmadhikari was also honored with the Maharashtra Bhushan 2008 award.
  • Appasaheb Dharmadhikari is involved in social and community building activities like tree plantation, blood donation and medical camps, abolition of dowry system, empowering women and tribals, conducting training for children and adult literacy centers.
  • Maharashtra Bhushan:
    • It is the highest civilian award conferred by the government of Maharashtra.
    • It includes a medal, a citation and Rs 25 lakh.
    • It was first awarded in 1996.
    • It is given in the fields of Literature, Art, Sport, Science, Social Work, Journalism, Public Administration and Health Services.

Topic: State News/ Jammu and Kashmir

6. Peerah-Kunfer Tunnel inaugurated by Nitin Gadkari at Ramban.

  • On 11 April, the Peeda-Kunfer tunnel has been inaugurated by Union Minister for Road, Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari at Ramban in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • ​Four more tunnels on Ramban-Banihal section of Jammu-Srinagar National Highway will be completed by March next year and work on one more tunnel will start very soon.
  • With the construction of these tunnels, the journey between Jammu and Srinagar will be completed in about three and a half hours.
  • The 924 meter long first tube of Peeda-Kunfer tunnel will bypass the congested and accident-prone area between Nashri and Ramban.
  • The tunnel is part of the ongoing four-lane project between Udhampur and Ramban on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.
  • The 250-km Jammu-Srinagar highway is being made four-laned at a cost of Rs 16,000 crore.
  • The tunnel will reduce the distance of the National Highway by 2.9 km and will provide great relief to commuters traveling on the National Highway in Ramban district.

Peerah-Kunfer Tunnel

(Source: News on Air)

Half Yearly Current Affairs 2022 - 2023

 
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Topic: MoUs/Agreements

7. National Mission for Clean Ganga has signed an agreement with 49 universities.

  • The agreement has been signed to inspire youth toward water conservation and river rejuvenation.
  • The aim of the MoU is to bring students at forefront of the mass movement for creating a sustainable ecosystem of rivers.
  • On the occasion, Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said that ensuring the cleanliness of River Ganga with the rejuvenation of rivers are the prime objectives of the Namami Gange Mission.
  • Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat presided over the Namami Gange: Universities Connect event where the agreement was signed with 49 universities.
  • The theme of the event was ‘Igniting Young Minds, Rejuvenating Rivers’.
  • The event was organised by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and APAC News Network in New Delhi.
  • NMCG was formed in 2011 under the Ministry of Jal Shakti. It is the implementing wing of the National Ganga Council.

Topic: Economy/Banking/Finance

8. SEBI unveiled its new logo on its 35th Foundation Day.

  • The new logo was introduced at a ceremony conducted at the SEBI Head Office in Mumbai on the occasion of SEBI Foundation Day.
  • The new logo reflects the combination of rich traditions of SEBI and new data and technology-based approach to all three areas of its mandate in the securities market.
  • These areas are the development and regulation of the securities market and investor protection.
  • The new SEBI logo retains its traditional blue colour palette.
  • Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI):
    • It was established on 12 April, 1988. It was established under the Ministry of Finance. It was granted statutory powers in 1992.
    • It functions as a quasi-judicial body. Madhabi Puri Buch is the first woman to lead the SEBI in its 35-year history. 

35th Foundation Day o SEBI

(Source: SEBI)

Topic: Corporates/Companies

9. Solar Energy Corporation of India gets 'Miniratna Category-I' status.

  • On 10th April, Miniratna Category-I Central Public Sector Enterprise (CPSE) status has been accorded to Solar Energy Corporation of India.
  • SECI is committed to achieving the target of 500 GW of non-fossil fuel-based capacity by 2030.
  • Till date, project capacities of more than 56 GW have been awarded to SECI.
  • SECI is also active in setting up projects through its own investments.
  • ICRA has given the highest credit rating of AAA to Solar Energy Corporation of India.
  • SECI has played a key role in the increasing renewable energy capacity of India.
  • As of December 2022, 66 companies are Miniratna I CPSE.
  • Solar Energy Corporation of India Ltd (SECI):
    • It was founded on 9 September 2011 to promote solar energy in India.
    • It was set up to facilitate the implementation of the National Solar Mission (NSM).
    • It is the only PSU dedicated to the solar energy sector.

Topic: State News/ Madhya Pradesh

10. Madhya Pradesh's Gond painting gets GI tag.

  • The Gond painting of Madhya Pradesh has got the prestigious Geographical Indication (GI) tag.
  • Dindori is the main source of Gond’s painting. GI tag status means that the authority has accepted that the original source of painting is the Dindori district.
  • GI Tag ensures that no one other than the registered authorized user may use the popular product's name.
  • GI Tag can be granted to industrial products, foodstuffs, agriculture products, spirit drinks, and handicrafts.
  • Gond painting:
    • It is a traditional art of the Gond tribe of Madhya Pradesh.
    • Patangarh village of Dindori district is famous for gond paintings.
    • The Gond painting was traditionally used by rulers to adorn the walls of each home.
    • The painting themes are based on nature, trees, plants, animals, moon, sun, river, drains, God and Goddesses.
    • Bhajju Shyam is one of the famous artists of Gond Painting.
  • Other products of Madhya Pradesh also got GI tags are as follows:

Batik print

  Ujjain

Bhedaghat stone craft

 Jabalpur

Waraseoni sari

 Balaghat

Sundarja mangoes

 Rewa

Gazak (a kind of sweet)

 Morena

 

Gond painting gets GI tag

(Source: ANI)

Topic: International News

11. 'Tulsi Ghat Restoration Project' launched by EAM Jaishankar in Uganda.

  • On 10 April, 'Tulsi Ghat Restoration Project' of Varanasi has been launched by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, during his visit to Uganda's Kampala.
  • Foreign Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar is on a 6-day visit to Uganda and Mozambique from 10 April 2023.
  • The initiative of Overseas Friends of BJP-Uganda is to contribute to further beautifying the oldest living city (Varanasi) in the world.
  • On 10 April, he met Ugandan President Yoweri K Museveni and congratulated the country on assuming the chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).
  • They also discussed cooperation in trade and investment, infrastructure, energy, defence, health, digital and agriculture sectors.
  • Jaishankar held delegation-level talks with his Ugandan counterpart as both sides look forward to enhance bilateral ties between the two countries.
  • During the visit, he will co-chair the 5th session of the Joint Commission Meeting with Mozambique's Foreign Minister Veronica Macamo.
  • Non-Aligned Movement (NAM):
    • Uganda is chairing the Non-Aligned Movement on behalf of Africa for the period 2022 to 2025.
    • The position of chair of NAM rotates every three years during the conferences.
    • The concept of NAM emerged in the backdrop of World War II.
    • The leaders of Yugoslavia, Egypt, India, Ghana and Indonesia agreed on the principles at the Bandung Conference in 1955.
    • The first conference was held in Belgrade in 1961.
    • Members: 120 countries

Topic: Personality in News

12. Former Chairman of Mahindra Group Keshab Mahindra passed away at the age of 99 on 12 April.

  • Keshub Mahindra started his career in 1947 by joining his father's company, which was involved in the production and sales of utility vehicles.
  • He served as the group's chairman for nearly 50 years, from 1963 to 2012, then nominated his nephew Anand Mahindra to take over as his successor.
  • Recently, Mahindra had regained his position on the Forbes list of India's richest billionaires for 2023.
  • With a net worth of $1.2 billion, he was India's oldest billionaire.
  • Mahindra served on various government committees, including the Sachar Committee on Company Law and Monopolistic and Restrictive Trade Practices (MRTO) Legislation and the Central Advisory Council of Industries.
  • From 2004 to 2010, he was a member of the Prime Minister's Council on Trade and Industry.
  • In 1987, Mahindra was honored with the prestigious Chevalier de l'Ordre National de la Legion d'honneur by the French Government.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

13. Department of Science and Technology signed MoU with Indian Navy for developing secure maritime communications.

  • Under this MoU, the Department of Science and Technology will develop secure maritime communications using Quantum Technology.
  • The MoU has been signed between Professor Tarun Souradeep, Director of Raman Research Institute and Vice Admiral Sandeep Naithani, Chief of Materiel, Indian Navy.
  • Raman Research Institute’s Quantum Information and Computing (QuIC) lab will lead the project of developing quantum key distribution techniques.
  • QuIC lab is leading India’s research in the field of secure quantum communication.
  • Its main achievements include development of an end-to-end simulation toolkit named “qkdSim”, ensuring safety in communication platforms, establishing secure communication between two buildings, etc.
  • QuIC lab is India’s first lab which has proposed and implement a wide range of applications using single and entangled photons for establishing secure communications in strategic areas.

secure maritime communications

(Source: PIB)

Topic: State News/ Rajasthan

14. PM Modi flagged off Rajasthan’s first Vande Bharat Express train on 12 April.

  • The train will run between Ajmer and Delhi Cantt. It will stop at Jaipur, Alwar and Gurugram.
  • This Vande Bharat Express will cover the distance between Delhi Cantt and Ajmer in 5 hours 15 minutes.
  • The new Vande Bharat Express will be 60 minutes faster than Shatabdi Express, the present fastest train running on the same route.
  • It will connect Delhi to Pushkar, Ajmer Sharif Dargah and other major tourist destinations.
  • Prime Minister said Vande Bharat Express support the spirit of ‘India First, Always First’.
  • More than 60 lakh people have travelled in the Vande Bahart train after its inception. Each Vande Bharat train is saving about 2,500 hours of people.
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