Daily Current Affairs and GK | 17 October 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 17 Oct 2023 18:02 PM IST

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Topic: National Appointments

1. Arindam Bagchi has been appointed as India's Permanent Representative to the UN.

  • Arindam Bagchi has been appointed India's next Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other international organisations in Geneva.
  • He will replace Indra Mani Pandey, who is set to return to India.
  • He is currently serving as an Additional Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs. He is a 1995-batch Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer.
  • He has been the spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) since March 2021.
  • He has served as ambassador to Croatia and deputy high commissioner to Sri Lanka.

Topic: Summits/ Conferences/ Meetings

2. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari addressed the India STEM Summit 2023 in Delhi.

  • The 5th edition of India STEM Summit was held in Delhi.
  • Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said that knowledge and innovation are the two important pillars for the growth of a country.
  • STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) promotes critical thinking, problem-solving capacities, imagination, questioning and exploration skills among learners.
  • He said that knowledge and innovation are the two important aspects that will help in making India the third-largest economy in the world.
  • India has the highest number of students getting bachelor's degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects.
  • Boys (85 per cent) are more willing to pursue a career in the field of STEM as compared to girls (57 per cent).
  • 95 per cent of children in India have males as their role models in the STEM field.

India STEM Summit 2023

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

3. The 18th India-Vietnam Joint Commission Meeting held in Hanoi.

  • On 16 October, the meeting was co-chaired by External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar with his Vietnamese counterpart, Bui Thanh Son.
  • Foreign Minister Dr. Subramaniam Jaishankar has gone on a visit to Vietnam from October 15-18.
  • The two leaders discussed ways to strengthen bilateral relations.
  • During the discussion, cooperation in political, defense, and maritime security, judicial, trade and investment, energy, development, education and training, science and technology, and cultural sectors were considered.
  • Dr. Jaishankar said that the strong partnership between India and Vietnam will contribute to building a stable, secure, and prosperous Indo-Pacific region.
  • He said that views were exchanged with Vietnam on issues related to the Indo-Pacific region, commitments related to global affairs, and cooperation in various multilateral groups.
  • On the second day of the visit, the External Affairs Minister also met the Chairman of the Foreign Relations Commission of the Communist Party of Vietnam, Le Haoi Trung.
  • Dr. Jaishankar, along with the Foreign Minister of Vietnam, also released commemorative postage stamps on the completion of 50 years of diplomatic relations between India and Vietnam.
  • These postage stamps depicting Kalaripayattu and Vovinam represent each other's love for sports and also reflect the strong cultural, social, and people-to-people contacts between the two countries.

18th India-Vietnam Joint Commission Meeting

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Personality in News

4. The former President of Finland Martti Ahtisaari passed away at the age of 86.

  • Nobel Peace Prize laureate Martti Ahtisaari, passed away on October 16. He served as the 10th President of Finland between 1994 and 2000.
  • Ahtisaari was known around the world for his work in bringing peace to conflict zones in Kosovo, Indonesia, and Northern Ireland.
  • He refused to accept that war and conflict were inevitable.
  • He was awarded the Norwegian Nobel Peace Prize in October 2008 for his significant efforts across multiple continents and over three decades to resolve international conflicts.
  • He also founded the Helsinki-based Crisis Management Initiative in 2000, which aimed to prevent and resolve violent conflicts through informal negotiations and mediation.

Topic: Indian Polity

5. Petitions against the electoral bond scheme were referred to a 5-judge Constitution bench by the Supreme Court.

  • The Supreme Court has referred petitions challenging the propriety of the electoral bond scheme to fund political parties to a five-judge bench.
  • The case will be heard on October 30.
  • In the earlier hearing, senior advocate Prashant Bhushan had said that it is necessary to consider this before starting the electoral bond scheme for the 2024 general elections.
  • The petitions filed against this scheme have mainly focused on two issues.
  • One is the legality of secret donations to political parties and the second is the violation of citizens' right to information in the matter of giving money to political parties.
  • Former finance minister Arun Jaitley first announced the electoral bond scheme during the 2017 budget session.
  • It was notified as a source of political funding through a Money Bill introducing amendments to the Finance Act and the Representation of the People Act in January 2018.
  • Under the scheme, the bonds are available for purchase in multiples of ₹1,000, ₹10,000, ₹1 lakh, ₹10 lakhs, and ₹1 crore at any SBI branch and can be purchased through a KYC-compliant account.
  • There is no limit on the number of electoral bonds that can be purchased by an individual or company.

Topic: Important Days

6. 39th Raising Day of the National Security Guard was celebrated on 16th October.

  • The raising day of National Security Guards (NSG), popularly known as the Black Cats is celebrated every year on 16 October.
  • On this occasion, Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted the National Security Guard (NSG) personnel.
  • NSG was established on 16 October 1984 after Operation Blue Star to combat terrorist activities and protect states against internal disturbances.
  • NSG was established as the country's anti-terrorism unit under the Ministry of Home Affairs.
  • It was formalized in the Parliament of India under the National Security Guard Act, 1986.
  • It is one of the seven central armed police forces of India.
  • Its motto is ‘Sarvatra Sarvotta Suraksha’ (omnipresent all-powerful protection), and built itself as the nation’s bulwark against all big threats.

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Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

7. India-UK 2 plus 2 Foreign and Defence Dialogue was organised in New Delhi on 16 October 2023.

  • This was the inaugural India-UK 2+2 Foreign and Defence Dialogue.
  • The possibilities to boost collaboration in certain areas were discussed during the dialogue.
  • These areas include trade and investment, defence, critical and emerging technologies, civil aviation, health, energy, and culture.
  • The 2 plus 2 dialogue is a mechanism to discuss as well as review all aspects of the India-UK Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.
  • Both countries expressed happiness about the progress made in diverse areas of the India-UK Roadmap 2030.

Topic: Infrastructure and Energy

8. Union Minister for Power and New & Renewable Energy, Shri R. K. Singh launched the EV-Ready India Dashboard.

  • The dashboard is a free digital platform focused on near real-time Electric Vehicle adoption and forecasts.
  • It is also focused on battery demand, charging density, and market growth trends.
  • It was developed by policy and industry experts at the think tank OMI Foundation.
  • The dashboard shows forecasts on EV adoption and associated battery demand till 2030.
  • As per the Foundation, the dashboard estimates over 1.6 crore annual EV deployments in India by 2030.
  • Maharashtra and Delhi are operating with the highest number of charging stations in India.
  • Tamil Nadu emerged as the E2W (electric two-wheeler) manufacturing hub of the country.
  • Telangana leads in E3W (electric three-wheeler) manufacturing, Maharashtra in E4W (electric four-wheeler) manufacturing, Gujarat in battery manufacturing and Karnataka in R&D.
  • Chandigarh reports the lowest public charging supply tariff at INR 3.6/kWh. This is 73% lower compared to the national average of INR 13.74/kWh.
  • The dashboard has forecast a 45.5% compound annual Growth Rate (CAGR) in electric vehicles between calendar year (CY) 2022 and CY 2030.
  • The dashboard enables one to book charging space before one reaches the destination.
  • Union Minister said that transport accounts for 18% of our carbon emissions.
  • He recalled the government first came out with guidelines for charging of electric vehicles in April 2018.

Topic: State News/ Goa

9. Goa cashew has been granted the Geographical Indication (GI) tag.

  • The Goa cashew (kernel) got the Geographical Indication (GI) tag.
  • It will help buyers to distinguish between authentic Goan cashews and those sourced from other regions.
  • Goan cashew has a long and cherished heritage. The GI tag will help in preserving its legacy.
  • The GI tag registration for Goan cashews was filed by the Goa Cashew Manufacturers’ Association (GCMA) in association with the Department of Science, Technology and Waste Management, Government of Goa.
  • Goan cashews will come with the GI logo. Traders cannot use the Goa cashew logo on the packets without registration.
  • A GI tag is conferred to products originating from a specific geographical region. It signifies its unique characteristics and qualities.
  • It is given by the Geographical Indications Registry in Chennai.
  • Cashew originated from northeast Brazil in Latin America and was introduced to Goa by the Portuguese in the 16th century (1570).

Topic: State News/ Madhya Pradesh

10. Bhopal's Mahila Thana became India’s first women's police station to get ISO certification.

  • In the last three years, the Bhopal Mahila Thana worked on its infrastructure.
  • It is the second ISO-certified police station in Bhopal. The first is Misrod police station.
  • The ISO certificate has been issued for three years.
  • The International Organization of Standardization presented certificate to the police station.
  • The police station has been made 'victim friendly'. A swing house has been also set up for children and more than five toilets have been built.
  • A feeding room has also been set up for women.
  • ISO (International Organization for Standardization) is an independent, non-governmental international organization with a membership of 169 national standards bodies.

Topic: Sports

11. India's bid for hosting the 2036 Olympics confirmed by PM Modi.

  • On 14 October, Prime Minister Narendra Modi confirmed that India would bid to host the 2036 Olympics.
  • During the inauguration of the 141st International Olympic Committee (IOC) session, PM Modi made the announcement at the Jio World Centre in Mumbai.
  • In addition, PM Modi also said India is also keen to host the Youth Olympics in 2029.
  • After a gap of almost 40 years, India is hosting the IOC session for the second time.
  • The 141st IOC Session is being held in Mumbai, India from 14 October to 17 October 2023.
  • In 1983, the 86th session of the IOC was held in New Delhi.

Topic: Important Days

12. World Food Day 2023: 16 October

  • Every year on 16 October, World Food Day is observed around the world.
  • The theme of World Food Day 2023 is "Water is life, water is food. Leave no one behind."
  • It is observed to mark the founding of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in 1945.
  • In 1979, World Food Day was established.
  • World Food Day celebration is led by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
  • The third edition of Junior World Food Day will also be celebrated on 19 October.
  • The Government of India is organizing World Food India 2023 from 3-5 November in New Delhi.
  • One of its objectives is to bring together the global food processing industry.

Topic: Summits/ Conferences/ Meetings

13. PM Modi to inaugurate the third edition of the Global Maritime India Summit.

  • The Third edition of the Global Maritime India Summit will be organized from 17th -19th October in Mumbai.
  • It is the biggest Maritime Event in India. Participants from Europe, Africa, South America, and Asia will take part in the event.
  • Global CEOs, Business leaders, Investors, Officials, and other stakeholders from across the world will attend the summit.
  • Several Indian state representatives will also attend the summit.
  • The three-day summit will discuss various issues in the maritime sector including ports of the future; decarburization; coastal shipping and inland water transportation; shipbuilding; repair and recycling; etc.
  • During the summit, the Prime Minister will unveil 'Amrit Kaal Vision 2047', a long-term roadmap for the Indian Ocean Blue Economy.
  • The roadmap includes enhancing port facilities, promoting sustainable practices, and facilitating international collaboration.
  • Prime Minister will inaugurate, dedicate to the nation and lay the foundation stone of projects worth more than 23 thousand crore rupees.
  • He will lay the foundation stone of Tuna Tekra all-weather deep draft terminal which will be built at a cost of more than four thousand 500 crore rupees at Deendayal Port Authority in Gujarat.
  • The first Maritime India summit was held in 2016 in Mumbai. The Second Maritime Summit was held virtually in 2021.

Topic: International Appointments

14. Daniel Noboa to become youngest-ever President of Ecuador.

  • After winning the elections, Daniel Noboa is set to be the youngest President of Ecuador.
  • Noboa received 52.29% of the total votes against his rival Luisa Gonzalez's 47.71%.
  • He promised in his election campaign that his government would try to attract foreign investment and develop Ecuador's business sector.
  • He has pledged to improve the economy and create jobs for young people.
  • He will be president for 17 months from December 2023 until May 2025.
  • Noboa is the son of Alvaro, who himself unsuccessfully stood for elections multiple times.
  • Ecuador currently has the fourth-highest homicide rate in Latin America.

Daniel Noboa

(Source: News on AIR)

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