Daily Current Affairs and GK | 16 September 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 16 Sep 2023 16:39 PM IST

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Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

1. The government launched a unified portal for agri-statistics (UPAg).

  • The Unified Portal for Agri-statistics (UPAg) has been developed by the Ministry of Agriculture.
  • It is a crucial component of digital public infrastructure for agriculture.
  • The portal aims to resolve data-related governance challenges such as the lack of standardised and verified data, Dispersed Data, and Different Frequency Variables.
  • It has been launched by Niti Aayog member Ramesh Chand.
  • This innovative platform has been designed to streamline data management in the agricultural domain.
  • It is a significant step towards a more efficient and responsive agricultural policy framework.
  • The portal will standardize data on prices, production, area, yield, and trade which will eliminate the need to compile data from multiple sources.
  • The portal will generate granular production estimates with increased frequency, which will help to increase the government’s ability to respond to agricultural crises swiftly.
  • This portal will also produce commodity profile reports using algorithms and provide users with comprehensive insights.

unified portal for agri-statistics

(Source: PIB)

Topic: Awards and Prizes

2. CAG received Rajbhasha Kirti Puraskar for better implementation of the Official Language Policy.

  • The office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) has bagged ‘Rajbhasha Kirti Puraskar’ by the Home Ministry for the “outstanding implementation” of Official Language Policy.
  • The award was presented by Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra to the Director General (Rajbhasha) of the CAG office in Pune.
  • This award has been given for the outstanding implementation of the Official Language Policy by CAG in 2022-23.
  • For the better implementation of ‘rajbhasha policies’, the CAG had formed a committee in ‘Hindi Pakhwada 2022’.
  • ‘Hindi Pakhwada 2023 is being organized in the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India from September 14 to September 29.
  • The main objective of this initiative is to create awareness about official work through Hindi and to promote the use of Hindi.
  • According to Article 343 of the Constitution, the official language of the Union is Hindi and the script is Devanagari.

Topic: Environment and Ecology

3. Invasive red fire ants have been found for the first time in Europe.

  • Researchers have found the red fire ant, one of the world's most invasive species, in Europe for the first time.
  • According to a new study in the scientific journal Current Biology, 88 red fire ant nests spread across five hectares in Syracuse in Sicily, Italy have been found.
  • The researchers found the red fire ant colonies in suburban areas of Syracuse.
  • The red fire ants with the scientific name Solenopsis invicta are native to South America.
  • Over time, red fire ants have spread to the United States, Mexico, the Caribbean, China, and Australia.
  • Red fire ants can be aggressive when they are disturbed. Their sting is painful and they can cause allergic reactions.
  • Many people have found fire ants in imported products in Spain, Finland, and the Netherlands.
  • The genetic analysis of the red fire ants estimates that they have most likely come from the United States or China.
  • The EU has revised its "species of concern" list to include the red fire ant.

Topic: Infrastructure and Energy

4. ‘YashoBhoomi’ will be dedicated by PM Modi at Dwarka on 17th September.

  • The first phase of the India International Convention and Expo Center (IICC), called 'Yashobhoomi', will be dedicated to the nation at Dwarka, New Delhi.
  • The Prime Minister will also inaugurate the extension of the Delhi Airport Metro Express Line from Dwarka Sector 21 to the new metro station 'Yashobhoomi Dwarka Sector 25’.
  • The vision of world-class infrastructure to host meetings, conferences, and exhibitions in the country will be strengthened with the operationalization of 'Yashobhoomi' in Dwarka.
  • It has been built with a total project area of over 8.9 lakh square meters and a total built-up area of over 1.8 lakh square meters.
  • 'Yashobhoomi' will be among the largest MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions) facilities in the world.
  • 'Yashobhoomi' has been developed at a cost of approximately Rs 5400 crore, and is equipped with a grand convention center, several exhibition halls, and other facilities.
  • The convention centre features the country's largest LED media façade. The convention centre's full hall is equipped with a seating capacity of approximately 6,000 guests.

Topic: National News

5. The birth certificate will be a single document for Aadhaar, admission from October 1.

  • The Registration of Births and Deaths (Amendment) Act, 2023 allows the use of birth certificates as a single document to avail multiple services by the Centre, which will come into force from October 1.
  • The services include admission to an educational institution, issuance of a driving license, preparation of voter list, Aadhaar number, registration of marriage, appointment to a government job, and for any other purpose determined.
  • On September 13, the Union Home Ministry issued a notification and made an announcement in this regard.
  • In the monsoon session concluded in August, both houses of Parliament passed the Registration of Births and Deaths (Amendment) Bill, 2023.
  • This Act empowers the Registrar General of India to maintain a national database of registered births and deaths.
  • Chief Registrars (appointed by States) and Registrars (appointed by States for local area jurisdiction) will be obliged to share the data of registered births and deaths in the national database.
  • The Chief Registrar will maintain a uniform database at the state level.

Topic: Important Day

6. World Lymphoma Awareness Day 2023: 15 September

  • Every year on September 15, World Lymphoma Awareness Day is observed.
  • The day is dedicated to raising awareness about lymphoma, which is a group of blood cancers that affect the lymphatic system, a part of the body's immune system
  • Lymphoma can occur in various forms, with the two main types being Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
  • In 2002, the Lymphoma Alliance was founded as an international network of lymphoma patient organizations from around the world.
  • On 15 September 2004, the first World Lymphoma Awareness Day was observed to mark the founding of the Lymphoma Coalition.
  • The day aims to educate the public about the types, symptoms, risk factors, and treatment options of lymphoma as increased awareness can lead to earlier diagnosis and better outcomes for individuals with lymphoma.

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Topic: National News

7. “An emergency alert system” tested by the government by sending messages to smartphones across the country.

  • On September 15, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) tested a pan-India emergency alert system for disaster management.
  • Flash messages in this regard were sent to people's smartphones across the country.
  • The flash message received stated, “This is a TEST MESSAGE". It was sent by the Department of Telecommunications through the Cell Broadcasting System.
  • NDMA is using this test to assess the effectiveness of the warning system and identify any potential problems.
  • They are also planning to conduct similar trials from time to time in different areas.
  • DoT in collaboration with NDMA is conducting the test to enhance emergency communications during disasters and ensure the safety and well-being of valued citizens.

An emergency alert system

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: State News/ Tamil Nadu

8. Rs 1,000 monthly aid scheme for women launched by Tamil Nadu govt.

  • On 15 September, Kalaignar Magalir Urimai Thittam was launched by the Tamil Nadu Government in Kancheepuram.
  • The scheme has been launched on the occasion of the birth anniversary of former Chief Minister and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) founder CN Annadurai.
  • Under the scheme, ₹1,000 every month will be given as a rights grant to 1.06 crore women family heads of the state.
  • It will cost the Tamil Nadu Government Rs 12,000 crore annually to implement this scheme.
  • The scheme has been launched at the Pachaiyappa’s College for Men and also launched the distribution of ATM cards to beneficiaries.
  • Ministers simultaneously launched the scheme in districts across the State.
  • Kalaignar Magalir Urimai Thittam was one of the schemes listed by the DMK in its election manifesto ahead of the 2021 assembly elections.

monthly aid scheme for women

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: State News/ Goa

9. Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant launched the Griha Adhar scheme.

  • The Griha Adhar scheme has been launched to empower the homemakers of Goa.
  • Pramod Sawant also distributed Griha Adhar sanction orders to numerous beneficiaries.
  • This initiative was organized by the Directorate of Women and Child Development to support homemakers financially. It will help in improving their quality of life and foster their independence.
  • Chief Minister Pramod Sawant also launched the Chavath e Bazaar. It will empower Goa entrepreneurs and self-help groups.
  • The Chavath e Bazaar is an online portal integrated with the Swiggy app for seamless ordering.
  • The Chief Minister also flagged off the Chavath e Bazaar vehicle.
  • Griha Adhar has created a substantial impact in the State and 11,500 newly sanctioned orders were disbursed across Goa.
  • Free-of-cost training will be provided to women at their respective panchayats under the Swayampurna Goa 2.0.

Topic: National Appointment

10. Rahul Navin has been appointed as in-charge director of the Enforcement Directorate.

  • The central government has appointed Rahul Navin as in-charge director of the Enforcement Directorate till the name of the regular director is announced or until further orders.
  • Rahul Navin is a 1993-batch- IRS officer. He has assumed charge in place of Sanjay Kumar Mishra.
  • Earlier, Navin has served as the chief vigilance officer of the ED headquarters.
  • With his appointment, Navin has become the most senior officer within the central probe agency.
  • In July, the Supreme Court granted an extension of tenure to ED chief Sanjay Mishra till September 15 with no further extension.
  • Directorate of Enforcement:
    • It investigates offences of money laundering and violations of foreign exchange laws.
    • It is responsible for the enforcement of the Foreign Exchange Management Act 2019 (FEMA), Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018, and certain provisions under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
    • It works under the Union Finance Ministry.
    • Its headquarters is located in New Delhi and is headed by the Director of Enforcement.

Topic: Indian Economy

11. India's FY24 growth forecast, retained at 6.3% by Fitch, reflects inflation risks.

  • On September 14, Fitch Ratings retained India's growth forecast for the current fiscal year at 6.3%, citing economic resilience despite tight monetary policy and export weakness.
  • In the April-June quarter of the current fiscal year, the Indian economy grew 7.8% on the back of strong service sector activity and strong demand.
  • Fitch said the Indian economy continues to show resilience despite tighter monetary policy and weakness in exports, with growth outpacing other countries in the region.
  • Fitch projected 6.3% growth for the current fiscal (April-March) and 6.5% for the next fiscal.
  • However, in its September update of the Global Economic Outlook, Fitch said high-frequency indicators suggest that growth is likely to slow in the July-September quarter.
  • Consumer price index-based retail inflation stood at 6.8% in August after 7.4% in July and 4.9% in June.
  • The rise in inflation in recent months has been mainly due to a sharp rise in the price of tomatoes and other food products.
  • Despite the risk of higher food prices, Fitch retained its 6.5% forecast for the RBI's benchmark interest rate till the end of 2023.
  • Fitch raised its 2023 world growth forecast by 0.1 percentage point to 2.5%.

Topic: Important Days

12. International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer/ World Ozone Day: 16 September

  • Every year on 16 September, International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer or World Ozone Day is celebrated.
  • The theme of World Ozone Day 2023 is “Montreal Protocol: fixing the ozone layer and reducing climate change."
  • In 1994, the United Nations General Assembly had declared 16 September as the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer.
  • It is celebrated to mark the anniversary of the signing of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer in 1987.
  • In the history of the United Nations, the Vienna Convention and Montreal Protocol were the first treaties to achieve universal ratification on 16 September 2009.
  • At the 28th Meeting of the Parties of the Montreal Protocol, signatories of the protocol agreed to end the use of hydrofluorocarbons phase-wise.
  • The ozone layer is the shield of gas that protects the Earth from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
  • The depletion of the ozone layer can cause skin cancer in humans and the destruction of the ecosystem.

World Ozone Day

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Awards and Prizes

13. Journalists and litterateurs of 18 Indian languages honoured with Bharatiya Bhasha Samman 2023.

  • The Bharatiya Bhasha Samman Diwas program was organized on the occasion of Hindi Diwas.
  • Hitesh Shankar, editor of 'Panchjanya', Dr. K., senior journalist for Telugu language Vikram Rao, senior journalist Shri Ram Joshi for Marathi, Padmashree Dr Vishnu Pandya received the award for Gujarati.
  • Senior journalist Dr Bhai Paramjit Singh received the award for Punjabi.
  • Dr. Suman Chandra Das for Bengali and Arun Jyoti Bora received the award for Assamese.
  • Dular and Kamal Kishore Khatri received the award for Sindhi.
  • The language used plays an important role in making the country prosperous and proud.
  • The first language award was given in the year 1996, which included Shri Dharikshana Mishra (Bhojpuri), Shri Banshi Ram Sharma and Shri M.R. Thakur (Himachali), who were honoured for their contribution in their respective languages.
  • Sahitya Akademi gives annual awards for excellent books and excellent translations in the 24 languages ​​recognized by it.

Topic: National Appointments

14. Mastercard India has appointed Rajnish Kumar as chairman.

  • Rajnish Kumar is a former chairman of the State Bank of India (SBI).
  • Rajnish Kumar will provide guidance to the South Asia executive leadership team of Mastercard in navigating the domestic payments landscape.
  • The team is led by Gautam Aggarwal, Division President for South Asia & Country Corporate Officer, India.
  • Rajnish Kumar spearheaded the development of YONO, which is SBI’s digital platform.
  • His three-year term as SBI chairman ended in October 2020. He currently chairs the Board of BharatPe.
  • Mastercard is the second-largest payment-processing corporation worldwide. It is headquartered in the US.
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