Daily Current Affairs and GK | 13 September 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 14 Sep 2023 16:58 PM IST

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Topic: Defence

1. India Army launched Project Naman' for the welfare of ex-servicemen, and kin of martyrs.

  • Under Project Naman, grievance redressal centres for veterans and the kin of personnel who have lost their lives will be established.
  • The first such centre will be established in Delhi Cantonment very soon.
  • The Directorate of Indian Army Veterans and HDFC Bank Limited and CSE e-Governance India Limited signed an MoU for Project 'NAMAN'.
  • A Common Service Centre will be established under this project for veterans and their relatives.
  • It will provide all government-to-customer services and also help in updating pensioners' accounts on the SPARSH portal.
  • Under the second phase of this project, 13 more centres will be established at various military stations across India.

Topic: International News

2. North Korea’s President Kim Jong-un reached Russia for a possible arms deal.

  • North Korean leader Kim Jong-un arrived in Russia and he will meet President Vladimir Putin.
  • Kim travelled to Russia on an armoured train for a one-to-one meeting with Putin.
  • Kim and Putin are expected to meet at an unspecified location in Russia's Far East.
  • Kim has arrived despite repeated warnings from the US to North Korea for not sending arms to Russia.
  • It is the first foreign trip of Kim Jong-un since the pandemic.
  • As per the US, any arms deal or military support to Russia in the Ukraine war would directly violate many U.N. Security Council resolutions.
  • Russia wants to buy North Korean ammunition for the war in Ukraine.
  • North Korea wants food aid and technology to help its nuclear and missile programmes.

Topic: State News/ Madhya Pradesh

3. The foundation stone of the Petrochemicals Complex and Refinery Expansion Project will be laid by PM Modi in MP.

  • On September 14, the foundation stone of the Downstream Petrochemical Complex and Refinery Expansion Project will be laid at BPCL’s Bina Refinery in Bina, Madhya Pradesh.
  • BPCL has set up a modern petrochemical complex in line with the aspirations of New Bharat in Madhya Pradesh. The cost of this project will be Rs 49,000 crore.
  • Under this project, the capacity of Bina Refinery will be increased to 11 million metric tonnes per annum, which will produce more than 2200 kilotons of petrochemical products. The entire project will be completed in five years.
  • The ethylene cracker complex will use captive feedstock like naphtha, LPG, kerosene, etc. from Bina Refinery.
  • This petrochemical complex will open doors to various downstream commercial manufacturing units in terms of plastics, pipes, packaging materials, plastic sheets, automotive parts, medical devices, and other items of domestic and industrial use.
  • Madhya Pradesh Government is supporting the project by providing financial incentives under SGST refunds, interest-free loans, interest subsidy assistance, concessional electricity, stamp duty exemption, etc.
  • This investment will result in foreign exchange savings of Rs 20,000 crore per year as well as the creation of over 1 lakh direct or indirect employment opportunities.
  • It will establish a global manufacturing hub for chemicals and petrochemicals, moving towards realizing the goal of making India a 5 trillion-dollar economy.
  • It will enable the Government’s vision of setting up ‘Petroleum Chemicals and Petrochemicals Investment Region PCPIR in the State.
  • It will attract major investments in segments such as films, fibres, injection molding, blow molding, pipes, conduits, and automobile parts.

Topic: Science and Technology

4. An unmanned guided vehicle for armed forces has been launched by Hyderabad startup Arrobot.

  • Launched an unmanned guided vehicle (UGV) will help the armed forces in logistics, surveillance, and reconnaissance in difficult terrain and environments.
  • The UGV can carry up to 200 kg of weight, pull up to 600 kg of weight with a 30-degree field of view, and perform many other functions with additional attachments.
  • The startup has received over ten unique orders from multinational companies and Indian government undertakings and also plans to hire over 100 people in the next year.
  • This Group has developed solutions for autonomous material movement up to 5 tonnes and Aircraft Push Back for towing and tugging aircraft.
  • In April 2023, Arrobot was founded by Hyderabad-based Raghu Vamsi Group in collaboration with Par East, which is a provider of autonomous solutions for manufacturing and supply chains.
  • Arrobot was founded to capitalize on the growth in automation, which is being catalyzed by Industry 4.0.

Topic: Defence

5. NATO countries are planning to conduct the biggest military exercise since the Cold War.

  • The exercise will start in the spring of the year 2024.
  • The exercise is expected to include 500 to 700 air combat missions, more than 50 ships, and approximately 41,000 troops.
  • This exercise will be conducted in the areas of Germany, Poland, and the Baltic countries.
  • NATO allies are conducting this exercise, responding to a military attack by the OCCASUS –Russia-led coalition.
  • This is to practice repelling a Russian attack against a member of the alliance.
  • The "Steadfast Defender" exercise is part of NATO's effort to counter Russian-led alliance.
  • This exercise will be conducted in the areas of Germany, Poland, and the Baltic countries.
  • Sweden, whose full entry into NATO has not yet been approved, is expected to join the exercise.
  • The total number of countries involved has reached 32.

biggest military exercise since the Cold War

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Geography

6. Death toll from Libya floods after Storm Daniel reaches nearly 5,300.

  • At least 5,300 people have been killed and 10,000 are missing in severe floods that have hit parts of eastern Libya.
  • According to estimates, around 20,000 people have been displaced.
  • 25% of the Libyan eastern city of Derna was destroyed after the storm breached dams.
  • More than 1,500 bodies have already been recovered by emergency workers in Derna alone and the death toll is expected to rise further.
  • On 12 September, PM Abdul Hamid Dbeibah announced that an aid plane carrying 14 tons of supplies and medical personnel was headed to Benghazi to help.
  • Meanwhile, aid has started arriving from some countries including Egypt, America, Germany, Iran, Italy, Qatar and Turkey.
  • Storm Daniel, which hit Greece, Turkey, and Bulgaria last week, reached the Mediterranean Sea on September 10.
  • On September 11, Storm Daniel hit eastern Libya, causing two dams on the Wadi Derna River to collapse and millions of cubic meters of water to flood the river plain downstream, hitting Derna.
  • The storm is also expected to reach parts of western Egypt where weather officials have warned of possible rain and bad weather.
  • According to climate scientists, global warming is the main reason behind this.
  • Scientists warn that more water evaporating during the summer is leading to more intense storms.

Libya floods after Storm Daniel

(Source: News on AIR)

UP GK - Uttar Pradesh General Knowledge

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Topic: Awards and Prizes

7. Two authors of Indian heritage have been shortlisted for the 2023 British Academy Book Prize for Global Cultural Understanding.

  • These authors are UK-based Nandini Das and US-based Kris Manjapra.
  • These authors are among six worldwide writers who have been nominated on 12 September 2023.
  • Nandini Das has been shortlisted for 'Courting India: England, Mughal India and the Origins of Empire'.
  • Manjapra is shortlisted for 'Black Ghost of Empire: The Long Death of Slavery and the Failure of Emancipation'.
  • The prize recognizes work in any language. However, the nominated work must be available in English and published in the UK.
  • The prize recognizes research-based works of non-fiction that have made an outstanding contribution to the public understanding of world cultures.
  • Each of the shortlisted writers will receive a 1,000 pound each.
  • The winner will be announced at an awards ceremony in London on 31 October, with a cash prize of £25,000.

Topic: Economy/Banking/Finance

8. RBI opens Sovereign Gold Bond Scheme 2023-24 Series II for subscription from 11 September.

  • RBI has fixed the issue price at Rs 5,923 per gram.
  • The issue price is calculated on the basis of the simple average of the closing price for gold of 999 purity.
  • Those investors who will apply online and make digital payments will get a discount of Rs 50 per gram.
  • The subscription period for the bonds is set from September 11 to September 15.
  • These bonds can be purchased by investors through various channels, including banks, Stock Holding Corporation of India Ltd (SHCIL), designated post offices, and recognized stock exchanges like NSE and BSE.
  • The Sovereign Gold Bond Scheme was launched in November 2015.
  • Its aim is to encourage financial savings over physical gold purchases.
  • The bond price is decided in Indian rupees based on the simple average closing price of gold of 999 purity, published by the India Bullion and Jewellers’ Association Ltd for the last 3 working days of the week preceding the subscription period.
  • The bonds are available in multiples of grams. The bonds are available with a minimum investment of 1 gram.
  • The bonds have an 8-year tenor with an exit option after the fifth year.
  • The maximum subscription limit for individual investors is 4 kg.
  • The maximum subscription limit for trusts and similar entities is 20 kg per fiscal year.

Topic: International News

9. India and Mongolia reviewed their bilateral relationships.

  • India and Mongolia discussed bilateral projects and cooperation in the areas of education, IT, skilling and capacity building.
  • They also signed the contract for the construction of India-Mongolia Friendship Secondary School.
  • They reviewed bilateral relations and exchanged their views for strengthening India-Mongolia Strategic Partnership.
  • They will enhance cooperation in the fields of development partnership, education, IT, hydrocarbons, renewable energy, security and defence, connectivity, minerals and capacity building.
  • Saurabh Kumar, Secretary (East) in the Ministry of External Affairs, is on a visit to Mongolia.
  • 'Nomadic Elephant’ is a bilateral exercise between India and Mongolia.
  • Mongolia:
    • It is a landlocked country in East Asia. It is bounded by Russia in the north and China in the south.
    • Its capital is Ulaanbaatar and its currency is Mongolian Togrog.
    • Its President s Ukhnaagiin Khürelsükh.
    • It is known as the “Land of the Eternal Blue Sky” and “Land of the Horse”.

India and Mongolia reviewed their bilateral relationships

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: National Appointment

10. Sindhu Gangadharan has been appointed as Vice Chairperson of NASSCOM.

  • Sindhu Gangadharan, MD, of SAP Labs India, has been appointed as Vice Chairperson of NASSCOM.
  • She was earlier appointed as Chairperson of the Nasscom GCC Council 2023-25.
  • She also serves on the Board of Siemens India and Titan Company.
  • She is the first woman to lead SAP Labs India. She is responsible for overseeing product development and innovation at all five centres of SAP.
  • National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom):
    • It was established in 1988 as an association of the software industry.
    • It is the premier trade body and chamber of commerce of the Tech industry in India.
    • Rajesh Nambiar is the chairperson of Nasscom.

Topic: Sports

11. Kiran George won the Indonesia Masters to clinch the second Super 100 title.

  • On 10 September, Indian shuttler Kiran George won his second BWF World Tour Super 100 title by winning the Indonesia Masters Trophy 2023 in Medan, North Sumatra.
  • He won over Koo Takahashi of Japan in the men's singles final.
  • In 2022, Kiran George won his maiden title at the Odisha Open by defeating compatriot Priyanshu Rawat in the final.
  • Kiran George was the only Indian to reach the final of the Indonesia Masters 2023.
  • List of the winners:

Event

Winner

 Runner-up

Men's Singles 

Jonatan Christie

Chico Aura Dwi Wardoyo

Women's Singles

An Se-young

Carolina Marín 

Men's Doubles 

Leo Rolly Carnando / Daniel Marthin

He Jiting / Zhou Haodong    

Women's Doubles

Liu Shengshu / Zhang Shuxian   

Yuki Fukushima / Sayaka Hirota 

Mixed Doubles 

Feng Yanzhe / Huang Dongping   

Jiang Zhenbang / Wei Yaxin

Topic: Infrastructure and Energy

12. Vijayawada Railway Station received IGBC’s ‘Green Railway Station’ certification with platinum rating.

  • Vijayawada Railway Station has got the ‘Green Railway Station’ certification with the highest rating of Platinum by the Indian Green Building Council (IGBC).
  • It got the certification for its efforts in improving environmental standards and providing eco-friendly services to passengers.
  • The rating of the station has been upgraded from gold in 2019 to platinum in 2023.
  • Many energy-efficient and solid waste management measures have been taken by the station in recent years.
  • Some of these measures include the use of star-rated electrical appliances, LED lights, the installation of a sewage treatment plant to recycle wastewater, periodic testing to check smoke emissions, etc.
  • Indian Green Building Council in association with the Environment Directorate of Indian Railways has developed the Green Railway Stations rating system.
  • This rating is based on six environmental categories: sustainable station facility, health, hygiene and sanitation, energy efficiency, water efficiency, smart and green initiatives and innovation and development.

Topic: Summits/ Conferences/ Meetings

13. Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal representing India at the Eastern Economic Forum.

  • The 8th Eastern Economic Forum is being held in Vladivostok, Russia from 10-13 September 2023.
  • Sonowal will address the India-Russia Business Dialogue at the Eastern Economic Forum.
  • He will also address the session on Eastern Maritime Corridor.
  • The Eastern Maritime Corridor aims to reduce cargo transit times. The journey from Indian ports to the Russian Far East takes just 24 days.
  • Eastern Economic Forum:
    • It was established by decree of the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin in 2015.
    • It was established to support the economic development of Russia’s Far East and to expand international cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.
    • It is an important international platform for establishing and strengthening ties within the Russian and global investment communities.

Topic: Summits/Conference/Meetings

14. International Conference on Dam Safety will be inaugurated by Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar at Jaipur in Rajasthan on 14th September.

  • The Department of Water Resources, River Development, and Ganga Rejuvenation, Ministry of Jal Shakti is organizing the Conference from 14th to 15th September.
  • In this conference, the world's leading experts and leaders in the field will gather to strengthen capabilities to enhance dam safety.
  • The theme of the International Conference is “Safe & Secure Dams Ensure Nation’s Prosperity."
  • There are more than 6,000 dams in India.
  • India ranks third globally in terms of large dams and about 80% of these dams are more than 25 years old, while 234 dams are more than 100 years old, hence ensuring their safety is of utmost importance.
  • With this objective in mind, the conference aims to provide a premier venue to bring together experts from India and across the world and discuss cutting-edge topics in dam safety and management.
  • Additionally, the conference will specifically discuss the objectives of the Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project (DRIP) Phase II and III as well as how the project contributes to dam safety improvement in India.
  • ICDS 2023 is the first in a series of dam safety conferences planned under Phases II and III of DRIP.

International Conference on Dam Safety

(Source: News on AIR)

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