Daily Current Affairs and GK | 13 June 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 13 Jun 2023 19:19 PM IST

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Topic: State News/ Nagaland

1. Gauhati High Court quashed Nagaland government order of banning the trade and commercial sale of dog meat.

  • The Kohima Bench of the Gauhati High Court quashed the Nagaland government order of banning the sale and trade of dog meat in the market in markets and dine-in restaurants.
  • As per petitioners, dog meat is part of the “culture and custom of the Nagas” and they are earning their livelihood for many years through the supply and sale of dog meat.
  • Nagaland government had issued the order based on a 2014 circular issued by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India.
  • According to this circular, the slaughtering of animals other than the ones specified under a sub-regulation of the Food Safety and Standards (Food Product Standards and Food Additives) Regulation, 2011 is not permissible.
  • Dogs are not part of the list so Nagaland government had banned the sale of dog meat.
  • The High Court states that dog meat appears to be an accepted food amongst the Nagas even in modern times.
  • The court observed that the definition of food in the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 is wide and liberal and sufficient to include dog meat as a food.
  • The High Court said that the primary role of the FSSA is to ensure the availability of safe food for humans. It doesn’t have the power to issue prohibition orders.

Topic: Science and Technology

2. IIT Madras researchers have created critical components for a highly efficient, cost-effective method of electrolyzing seawater to generate hydrogen.

  • Alkaline water electrolyser technology is energy-intensive.
  • It requires an expensive oxide-polymer separator. It uses fresh water for electrolysis.
  • IIT Madras team has developed simple, cost-effective alternatives that are highly efficient in generating hydrogen and splitting seawater.
  • The team created an electrolyser that uses alkaline seawater instead of pure or fresh water.
  • Carbon-based support material has been used for the electrodes in place of metals to prevent corrosion.
  • They also designed and created transition metal-based catalysts. These can catalyse oxygen and hydrogen evolving reactions.
  • The team has also created a cellulose-based separator. It allows hydroxide ions to pass through. It minimises the crossover of hydrogen and oxygen.
  • It is economical. Routinely used zirconium oxide-based material is expensive.
  • The water electrolyser directly uses photovoltaic-derived voltage to split seawater.
  • The team has built two prototypes of different dimensions to assess the viability of the catalyst.
  • All the cells have demonstrated a shelf-life of over six months and the study is continuing.

Topic: Environment and Ecology

3. Bihar government, Los Angeles Zoo and the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) will strengthen conservation efforts of the Gharial.

  • They are happy and confident by Gharial conservation efforts in West Champaran district’s Gandak River.
  • In 2014, Bihar government launched the Gharial Conservation Project to revive the breeding of the Gharials in Gandak River.
  • The project was launched in association with the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI).
  • The project has given positive results as 217 Gharial have been sighted in 284 km stretch of the river, compared to just 30 in 2014.
  • Los Angeles Zoo has decided to strengthen the ongoing conservation effort through ‘ex-situ’ incubation.
  • It will send a detailed project report after which a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will be signed.
  • In ex-situ conservation, an endangered species is protected outside its natural habitat.
  • The Gandak River is now the second successful breeding site for Gharials in India after the Chambal Sanctuary area.
  • Gharials are critically endangered as per the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Species.
  • Gandak River is a left bank tributary of Ganges in India. It enters India first in Maharajganj District of Uttar Pradesh.
  • It passes through West Champaran, Gopalganj, Saran and Muzaffarpur districts of Bihar.

Topic: Sports

4. The World Cup Squash Championship started in Chennai on 13 June 2023.

  • Udhayanidhi Stalin, Minister for Youth Welfare and Sports Development of Tamil Nadu, formally inaugurated the game on 12 June 2023.
  • The game had returned to Chennai after a gap of 12 years.
  • The last edition of the World Cup was organized in Chennai in 2011.
  • President of the World Squash Federation, Zena Woolrigdge, said that it was a delight to see the world cup return to Chennai.
  • India will play against Hongkong and China in the pool B matches.
  • In another match, Japan will play against South Africa.
  • In Pool A, Egypt will take on Australia and Malaysia will play against Colombo.

Topic: State News/ Uttar Pradesh

5. India-backed Action Plan on Sustainable Development Goals adopted at G20 Development Ministers' conclave in Varanasi.

  • The conclave has adopted an ambitious seven-year action plan put forward by India to accelerate progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by the G20 countries.
  • Another document has also been adopted by the G20 Development Ministers' Conclave aimed at enhancing cooperation and partnership for sustainable lifestyles to complement climate mitigation.
  • The document adopted by the development ministers will be submitted for consideration by G20 leaders at the grouping's summit to be held in New Delhi on 9 and 10 September.
  • The conclave hosted by India in its capacity as the current chair of the G20.
  • EAM S Jaishankar said the Action Plan on SDGs will not only inspire a stronger G20 commitment to the development agenda but also drive transformative actions in three key areas.
  • India has become the voice of the Global South and has tried to raise the issues of financial gap and debt challenges in relation to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • After assuming the G20 presidency, India's approach has brought development back to the G20's focus and raised hopes for countries in the Global South.

Action Plan on Sustainable Development Goals

(Source: News on Air)

Topic: State News/ Haryana

6. Haryana government announced a monthly pension of Rs 10,000 to the Padma awardees of the state.

  • On 12 June, a monthly pension of 10,000 rupees has been announced by Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal for the Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan awardees of the State.
  • They will also get the facility of free travel in Volvo buses of the state government.
  • The Chief Minister made this announcement during his visit to Karnal.
  • The CM said that the government has made several welfare policies to make life easier for the people of the state.
  • The state government is providing health insurance benefits of up to Rs 5 lakh to families with an annual income of up to Rs 1.80 lakh.
  • The government is also considering to include those families whose annual income is between Rs 1.80 lakh to Rs 3 lakh in this scheme, they can be given the benefit of up to Rs 5 lakh by taking some premium amount.
  • After the implementation of the family ID card scheme (Parivar Pehchan Patra) 12.5 lakh new Below Poverty Line (BPL) ration cards have been made in the state.

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Topic: Personality in News

7. Italy's longest-serving premier Silvio Berlusconi passed away on 12 June 2023.

  • Former Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi passed away at Milan's San Raffaele Hospital.
  • Berlusconi had been suffering from leukemia. Recently, he developed a lung infection.
  • His Forza Italia party is a member of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni's right-wing coalition.
  • He served as the Italian Prime Minister from 1994-1995, 2001-2006 and 2008-2011.
  • He was a member of the Chamber of Deputies, which is the lower house of the bicameral Italian Parliament.
  • He also served as a member of the Senate of the Republic, which is the upper house of the bicameral Italian Parliament.
  • Italy:
    • It is a European country with a long Mediterranean coastline.
    • Rome is its capital and largest city. Its currency is Euro.
    • Giorgia Meloni is its Prime Minister. Sergio Mattarella is its President.

Italy's longest-serving premier

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Important Days

8. International Albinism Awareness Day: 13 June

  • International Albinism Awareness Day is observed every year on 13 June.
  • This day is observed to raise awareness about albinism and to protect the human rights of people with albinism.
  • The theme of International Albinism Awareness Day 2023 is ‘Inclusion is Strength’.
  • On 4 May 2006, the Tanzania Albinism Society (TAS) and other NGOs celebrated the first Albino Day.
  • It was called National Albino Day from 2009 onwards. 
  • United Nations Human Rights Council adopted a resolution called “Attacks and Discrimination against Persons with Albinism" in 2013.
  • In December 2014, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) proclaimed 13 June as International Albinism Awareness Day, with effect from 2015.
  • Albinism is a genetically inherited, non-contagious disease characterized by a lack of melanin in the skin, eyes, and hair.
  • It is a rare condition. Almost all people with albinism are visually impaired. They are prone to developing skin cancer.

Topic: Indian Economy

9. India's industrial production rose 4.2 per cent in April.

  • Factory output reached 4.2 per cent in April primarily due to a low base effect and a pick-up in the manufacturing and mining sectors.
  • Regarding figures, the Index of Industrial Production (IIP) increased to 140.2 in April from 134.5.
  • The manufacturing sector's output grew 4.9 percent in April 2023 as against 5.6 percent a year ago.
  • Earlier, India’s industrial production growth reached to a five-month low of 1.1 per cent in March.
  • In April 2023, power generation declined by 1.1 percent against a growth of 11.8 per cent of the last year.
  • During April 2023, Mining output rose by 5.1 per cent. Consumer durables continued to shrink for the fifth month in a row.
  • As per data released, retail inflation slipped to a 25-month low of 4.25 per cent in May.
  • Inflation has decreased mainly due to a decline in food and fuel prices.

Topic: International News

10. United States announced to rejoin United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

  • On 12 June, the United States announced to rejoin UNESCO and will pay more than $600 million back dues.
  • US has taken this decision after it felt that China is filling the gap left by the U.S. in UNESCO policy-making.
  • The U.S. government would pay its dues and $10 million in bonus contributions this year.
  • This decision is a big financial boost for UNESCO. The US was the biggest funder of UNESCO.
  • In 2017, the US left UNESCO citing anti-Israel bias and management problems.
  • In recent years, UNESCO has worked to address the reasons the U.S. left and it has brought budget reforms.
  • In the budget, the Biden administration has already requested $150 million to pay dues and arrears of UNESCO.
  • Previously, the US pulled out of itself from UNESCO under the Reagan administration in 1984. Later, the US rejoined UNESCO in 2003.
  • UNESCO:
    • It was founded in 1945.
    • It has 193 member states and 12 associate members.
    • It aims to achieve objective through five major programme areas: education, natural sciences, social/human sciences, culture and communication/information.
    • Its headquarters is located in Paris, France.
    • Audrey Azoulay is the Director-General of UNESCO.

Topic: Sports

11. India's ace athlete Murali Sreeshankar finished third in the men's long jump event at the Paris Diamond League.

  • On 10 June, Murali jumped with 8.09 meters in the third attempt at Paris Diamond League 2023 athletics in France.
  • Murali Sreeshankar has become the third Indian to finish in the top three of the Diamond League competition.
  • Earlier Neeraj Chopra and Vikas Gowda have achieved this feat.
  • Greece's Miltiadis Tantoglu won the Paris Diamond League with a jump of 8.13m.
  • Simon Eheimer of Switzerland came second with a jump of 8.11 meters.
  • Paris Diamond League 2023 started on 9 June.

men's long jump event at the Paris Diamond League

(Source: News on Air)

Topic: International Appointments

12. Pieter Elbers appointed as chair-elect of IATA's board of governors.

  • On June 11, Pieter Elbers, the CEO of IndiGo, has been announced as the chair-elect of the Board of Governors of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
  • He will replace the current chairman of Yvonne Manzi Makolo with effect from June 2024.
  • Elbers will play a key role in further shaping the global aviation landscape, advocating for the interests of the industry and driving innovation and sustainability initiatives.
  • Under his guideline, IndiGo has consistently demonstrated its commitment to cost-effective fares, on-time performances and courteous and hassle-free services across its peerless network.
  • International Air Transport Association (IATA):
    • It is a trade association of the world’s airlines.
    • It is headquartered in Montreal, Canada.
    • It was founded in 1945.

Topic: Agriculture and allied sectors

13. CACP recommends Central government to bring urea under NBS regime.

  • To resolve the issue of imbalanced use of Urea, CACP recommended the Centre to bring urea under the nutrient-based subsidy (NBS) regime.
  • Disproportionate use of urea in agriculture is one of the primary reasons for worsening plant nutrient imbalance.
  • At present, Urea does not come under NBS, which includes non-urea fertilisers like phosphorous and potassium.
  • The MRP of other fertilizers is under the indirect control of NBS policy.
  • Manufacturers of these fertilisers enjoy the freedom to fix MRP within “reasonable limits”.
  • As of result, the prices of other fertilisers have increased much over the years as compared to Urea. This has tilted farmers towards urea.
  • The main cause of the nutrient imbalance is due to fertiliser subsidies.
  • CACP has also recommended to set a limit on the number of subsidized bags of fertilizers per farmer.
  • India is one of the largest producers and consumers of fertilisers in the world.

Topic: Infrastructure and Energy

14. Gujarat reached on first position in terms of installed wind power capacity.

  • It has pushed Tamil Nadu to second rank in terms of installed wind power capacity.
  • As of 31 May 2023, Gujarat’s total installed wind power capacity was at 10,416 MW, while Tamil Nadu’s wind power capacity stood at 10,125 MW.
  • Gujarat’s wind power capacity was approximately 1,000 MW lower than that of Tamil Nadu two years ago.
  • Gujarat has emerged as the top state due to faster capacity addition aided by favourable policy interventions, the availability of infrastructure, and the strong financial position of Discom.
  • Tamil Nadu faces challenges like evacuation issues, restricted offtake, land availability, and delayed payments.
  • Gujarat is also the 2nd state after Rajasthan to achieve cumulative renewable energy capacity of over 20,000 MW.
  • As of 31 May 2023, Gujarat’s cumulative installed capacity stood at 20,293 MW.
  • In the overall renewable sector, Rajasthan is the top state with a total capacity of 22,518 MW.
  • Tamil Nadu stands at 3rd position with a total installed capacity of 18,125 MW.
  • Tamil Nadu is followed by Karnataka (16,969 MW) and Maharashtra (12,773 MW).
  • As per rating agency ICRA, the addition of renewable energy capacity is expected to increase from 15 GW in FY23 to about 20 GW in FY24.
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