Daily Current Affairs and GK | 15 June 2022
- 1. Union Cabinet has approved the Memorandum of Association (MoA) by India for setting up of BIMSTEC TTF at Colombo, Sri Lanka.
- 2. Union Cabinet has approved ‘AGNIPATH’ scheme to recruit ‘Agniveers’ in Armed Forces.
- 3. 1st Type Certificate (TC) under Drone Rules, 2021 has been awarded to Gurugram based company IoTechWorld Avigation Pvt Ltd.
- 4. Union Cabinet approved an agreement among the SCO member states' authorized bodies on cooperation in the field of youth work.
- 5. Lord Buddha's four Holy Kapilvastu Relics arrived in Mongolia for an 11-day exhibition.
- 6. Global Wind Day 2022 / World Wind Day 2022: 15 June
- 7. Union Cabinet approved construction of a new greenfield airport in Dholera, Ahmedabad.
- 8. In May 2022, wholesale price-based inflation hit a new high of 15.88 %, owing to increased food and crude oil prices.
- 9. Sugamya Cane Device is an assistive device that helps a visually impaired person in mobility and direction-finding.
- 10. President Ram Nath Kovind attended Lokarpana ceremony of Sri Rajadhiraja Govinda Temple at Vaikuntha Hill, Vasanthapura, Bengaluru on 14 June 2022.
- 11. Union Cabinet has approved the proposal for the signing of the agreement between India and the UN on a ‘Way Finding Application’.
- 12. Rosatom State Corporation of Russia provided 1st batch of more efficent nuclear fuel for Kudankulam Nuclear power plant, Tamil Nadu.
- 13. Ministry of Home Affairs ends tenure of CEO of NATGRID.
- 14. Public Feedback invited on Draft National Policy for Persons with Disabilities.
- 15. Justin Bieber diagnosed with Ramsay Hunt Syndrome.
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Topic: National News
1. Union Cabinet has approved the Memorandum of Association (MoA) by India for setting up of BIMSTEC TTF at Colombo, Sri Lanka.
- The MoA for the establishment of the BIMSTEC Technology Transfer Facility (TTF) was signed by the BIMSTEC member countries at the 5th BIMSTEC Summit.
- The 5th BIMSTEC Summit was held in Colombo, Sri Lanka on 30th March 2022.
- BIMSTEC TTF aims to facilitate and strengthen cooperation in technology transfer among the BIMSTEC Member States.
- The TTF will have a Governing Board, which will be responsible for overall control of activities of the TTF.
- Governing Board will have one nominee from each Member State.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
2. Union Cabinet has approved ‘AGNIPATH’ scheme to recruit ‘Agniveers’ in Armed Forces.
- ‘AGNIPATH’ scheme is for the recruitment of youth in the Armed Forces.
- The youth selected under the ‘AGNIPATH’ scheme will be known as Agniveers.
- 46,000 Agniveers will be recruited this year. Recruitment rallies will start in 90 days.
- Agniveers will be enrolled under respective Service Acts for four years.
- Agniveers will be given an attractive monthly package along with risk and hardship allowances.
- One time ‘Seva Nidhi’ package (Rs 11.71 Lakh) will be paid to Agniveers upon completion of the engagement period of four years.
- The ‘Seva Nidhi’ will be exempted from Income Tax. There shall be no entitlement to gratuity and pensionary benefits.
- Agniveers will get a non-contributory Life Insurance Cover of Rs 48 lakhs for the duration of their engagement period in the Indian Armed Forces.
- The individuals, selected for enrolment in the Armed Forces as regular cadres, would be required to serve for a further period of a minimum of 15 years.
- Aspirants between the ages of 17.5 years and 21 years will be eligible to apply under the Agnipath scheme.
3. 1st Type Certificate (TC) under Drone Rules, 2021 has been awarded to Gurugram based company IoTechWorld Avigation Pvt Ltd.
- First Type Certificate (TC) has been awarded in just 34 days after submission of online application on the DGCA’s DigitalSky Platform.
- Drone Rules, 2021 give 60 days to Quality Council of India (QCI) or the Certification Bodies and 15 days to DGCA for issuing the Type Certificate (total 75 days).
- QCI has approved three globally-renowned Certification Bodies. They are TQ Cert, UL India and Bureau Veritas.
- Drone Rules, 2021 were notified on 25 Aug 2021. ‘Certification Scheme for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (CSUAS)’ for obtaining Type Certificate (TC) for drones was notified on 26 Jan 2022.
- IoTechWorld Avigation Pvt Ltd. is one of India’s leading manufacturers of kisan drones.
Topic: National News
4. Union Cabinet approved an agreement among the SCO member states' authorized bodies on cooperation in the field of youth work.
- The agreement was signed by the Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India, following the adoption of the agreement on 17 September 2021 by the member nations of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) on cooperation in the field of youth work.
- The SCO Secretariat's official working languages are Russian and Chinese.
- The agreement's goal is to increase mutual trust, friendly relations, and collaboration among SCO member states' young people.
- The areas of collaboration are as follows:
- Improve cooperation in the field of work with youth and public youth organisations (associations) implementing state youth policy
- Support initiatives aimed at boosting international youth cooperation
- Training of professional staff in the sphere of work with youth
- Carrying out joint research and activities on various youth policy issues and youth cooperation
Topic: Arts and Culture
5. Lord Buddha's four Holy Kapilvastu Relics arrived in Mongolia for an 11-day exhibition.
- H.E Ms Ch Nomin, Mongolia's Culture Minister, received the holy relics with great reverence and ceremony at Ulaanbaatar International Airport.
- Shri Kiren Rijiju stated that the bringing of relics from India to Mongolia will deepen the historical ties between India and Mongolia.
- These relics belong to a collection of 22 special relics kept in the Ministry of Culture's National Museum.
- Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi gifted the major Buddha statue in the Gandan Monastery in 2015 to the people of Mongolia and it was installed in 2018.
- It is a landlocked East Asian country located north of India. It is bounded by Russia in north and China in 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”.
- Longest river is Orkhon River.
Topic: Important Days
6. Global Wind Day 2022 / World Wind Day 2022: 15 June
- Global Wind Day is observed annually on 15 June.
- It aims to attract attention towards the wind energy- its potential and possibilities in reshaping our energy systems.
- It is organized by WindEurope and Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC).
- Global Wind Day was first celebrated in 2009.
- Wind Energy is a non-conventional energy and a clean source that can help in reducing carbon emissions. Wind is used to produce electricity using the kinetic energy created by air in motion.
Read about Wind Energy Capacity in India and World
Topic: National News
7. Union Cabinet approved construction of a new greenfield airport in Dholera, Ahmedabad.
- The proposal for the development of Phase I of the New Greenfield Airport at Dholera, Gujarat, has been approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, which is chaired by PM Modi.
- The project is expected to cost Rs 1305 crore and will take 48 months to complete.
- Dholera International Airport Company Limited is in charge of the implementation of the project (DIACL).
- It is a joint venture company that is owned in the proportions of 51:33:16 by the Airports Authority of India (AAI), the Government of Gujarat (GoG), and the National Industrial Corridor Development and Implementation Trust (NICDIT).
- The airport is expected to operate in 2025-26 with an initial passenger flow of 3 lakhs per year, which will grow to around 23 lakhs over the next 20 years.
- The yearly cargo flow is expected to be 20,000 tonnes in 2025-26, rising to 2,73,000 tonnes in 20 years.
- Government has given in-principle approval for setting up of 21 Greenfield Airports across India.
8. In May 2022, wholesale price-based inflation hit a new high of 15.88 %, owing to increased food and crude oil prices.
- Inflation based on the Wholesale Price Index was 15.08 % in April and 13.11 % in May of last year.
- Prices of mineral oils, crude petroleum, and natural gas, food, non-food metals, chemicals & chemical products, and food goods have risen significantly in May 2022 as compared to the same month of the previous year.
- Since April 2021, WPI inflation has been in double digits for the 14th month in a row and has been in the upper trajectory for three straight months.
- Inflation in food articles stood at 12.34% in May, as prices of vegetables, wheat, fruits, and potatoes showed a sharp rise compared to a year ago.
- Inflation rates in May on certain items are:
Egg, Meat and Fish
Fuel and Power basket
Crude petroleum and Natural gas
- In May, retail inflation was 7.04 %, exceeding the RBI’s inflation target for the fifth month in a row. Retail inflation is measured by CPI.
- The RBI has raised repo rate by 40 basis points in May and 50 basis points in June to deal with high inflation.
- Last week, the central bank boosted its inflation forecast for 2022-23 by 100 basis points to 6.7%.
Topic: Science and Technology
9. Sugamya Cane Device is an assistive device that helps a visually impaired person in mobility and direction-finding.
- It consists of Sugamya Cane Sensor and a Normal Foldable White Cane.
- It detects obstacles that come within the detection zone of the sensor. It has ultrasonic sensors.
- Two detection ranges of sensors i.e. short-range and long-range have been provided in Sugamya Cane.
- While moving in the outdoor environment, a longer range can be convenient and for the indoor environment, a shorter range can be convenient.
- Sugamya Cane device has a rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery.
- It is recommended to use the charger provided by ALIMCO. However, the battery can also be charged with a good-quality smartphone charger.
- White Cane is a set of 04 pieces of pipe and the Sensor is mounted on the top piece of pipe.
- The total weight of Sugamya Cane is 348 grams. It is very lightweight.
Topic: Art and Culture
10. President Ram Nath Kovind attended Lokarpana ceremony of Sri Rajadhiraja Govinda Temple at Vaikuntha Hill, Vasanthapura, Bengaluru on 14 June 2022.
- Addressing on the occasion, the President said that temples have been one of the most important symbols of Hinduism.
- President spoke about the contribution of A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada in spreading the message of the Gita to the world.
- A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada is the Founder-Acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON).
- On this occasion, the President received a copy of the book, titled ‘Sing, Dance and Pray: The inspirational story of Srila Prabhupada’.
- The book is written by Senior Vice President of ISKCON Bengaluru, Shri Chanchalapathi Dasa Dr. Hindol Sengupta.
Topic: National News
11. Union Cabinet has approved the proposal for the signing of the agreement between India and the UN on a ‘Way Finding Application’.
- The Way Finding Application is to be used in the Palais des Nations, United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG).
- The ‘Way Finding Application’ development project has been conceptualized as a donation from the Government of India to the UN on the occasion of its 75th anniversary in 2020.
- The estimated financial implication for the App is $ 2 Million.
- The project consists of the development, deployment, and maintenance of a ‘Way Finding Application’ to facilitate navigation in the Palais des Nations premises of UNOG.
- The Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DoT) has been made responsible for the development of the App.
Topic: Infrastructure and Energy
12. Rosatom State Corporation of Russia provided 1st batch of more efficent nuclear fuel for Kudankulam Nuclear power plant, Tamil Nadu.
- The TVS-2M nuclear fuel is more efficent and reliable than the existing one.
- Nuclear fuel is a fuel that is used in a nuclear reactor to sustain the chain reaction. Examples- Uranium-235, Plutonium-239
- The TVEL fuel company of Rosatom has fulfilled the agreement with NPCIL on implementation of a comprehensive engineering project which includes the introduction of TVS-2M fuel and increment of fuel cycle from 12 to 18 months for both VVER-1000 reactors.
- Advantages of TVS-2M nuclear fuel: Increased uranium capacity, anti-debris filter protecting bundles from debris damage, reliable and cost-efficient.
- Russia is building the Kudankulam plant under an Inter-governmental agreement of 1988 and follow on agreements in 1998 and 2008. The first stage (Unit No. 1 and 2) was commissioned in 2013 and 2017. Unit No. 3 and 4 are the second stages and Unit No. 5 and 6 are the third stages of the nuclear plant. The second and third stages are under construction.
- Three- Stage nuclear program of India:
- It was formulated by Homi Bhabha in the 1950s.
- Stage-1: Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors are fuelled by natural uranium. The by-product is Plutonium-239. Heavy water is used both as moderator and coolant.
- Stage-2: Fast Breeder reactor uses Pu-239 obtained from the first stage. No moderator is used; liquid sodium is used as a coolant. This stage uses fast neutron so as to produce more nuclear fuel than consumed. Uranium-233 is also formed as a by-product. Currently, India is in the second stage.
- Stage-3: Thorium Based reactors or Advanced Nuclear power systems that can be refueled using thorium. KAMINI reactor (in IGCAR) is the only currently operating reactor in the world, which uses 233U as fuel.
Topic: National News
13. Ministry of Home Affairs ends tenure of CEO of NATGRID.
- The tenure of CEO of NATGRID, Ashish Gupta, was to end in September 2022. He had served 8 years in NATGRID. He is now moved to the position of Additional Director General in BSF.
- He was given an extension as NATGRID CEO earlier this year as the post was upgraded to the rank of Additional Secretary.
- On 3 May, Home Minister launched NATGRID’s data recovery centre in Bengaluru.
- National Intelligence Grid (NATGRID):
- It was first conceptualised in 2009 after the 26/11 attacks. It was approved in 2010.
- It will act as a single platform for security and intelligence agencies to access the database related to immigration entry and exit, banking and telephone details of suspects, air and train travel details, etc.
- It will act as a link between intelligence agencies and investigation agencies.
- It will be available to 11 central agencies such as CBI, ED, IB, RAW and police of all states.
Topic: National News
14. Public Feedback invited on Draft National Policy for Persons with Disabilities.
- The draft policy has been released by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. It is the revision of existing 2006 policy for PwDs.
- It proposes intervention in certain areas including disability prevention, education, healthcare, social security and accessibility.
- As per the 2011 census, there are 2.68 crore people (around 2.21% of total population) that have some form of disability.
- Health Ministry’s National programme on prevention of disabilities focuses only on traditional causes; but there are other causes of disability – malnourishment, medical negligence, social and cultural factors, and impairment caused by disasters.
- The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 (RPD Act) also expanded the number of disabilities from 7 to 21.
- India signed the United Nations Convention on Rights of Person with Disabilities (UNCRPD) in 2007.
- Anjali Bhawra is the head of the Committee formed to come up with the draft policy.
- Highlights of Draft Policy:
- Comprehensive national programme on prevention that would include the disabilities mentioned in the RPD Act.
- Early detection as 1/3rd of most disabilities in children can be prevented if detected early.
- States and UTs to add a provision on compliance with RPD act while granting permission or recognition to educational institutions.
- Module on disability to be included in MBBS and other medical courses.
- Ministry of Road Transport and Highways to issue guidelines for making modifications in the personal vehicles used by PwDs.
- National level employment portal and disability sports centre for PwD will be opened.
Topic: Biotechnology and Diseases
15. Justin Bieber diagnosed with Ramsay Hunt Syndrome.
- It is a rare neurological disorder. It is also called herpes zoster oticus.
- Cause: Vricella-zoster virus (VZV) of the human herpesvirus family
- It is named after James Ramsay Hunt who first described this disorder in 1907.
- It causes inflammation of the facial nerves leading to temporary paralysis.
- It is non-contagius and is usually recoverable.
- The virus can remain dormant for decades in a person who has had chickenpox as a child. Reactivation of the virus results in shingles and, in some cases, develops into Ramsay Hunt syndrome. Less than 1% of the cases involve the facial nerve and result in Ramsay hunt syndrome.
- Other symptoms of the disorder are dry eyes, tearing, nasal obstruction, Speaking difficulties, change in taste, etc.
- It is different from Bell’s palsy (a neurological disorder of 7th cranial nerve) where the patient fully recovers. In case of Ramsay hunt syndrome, the patient may not recover completely.