Daily Current Affairs and GK | 18 October 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 18 Oct 2023 17:12 PM IST

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Topic: International Appointments

1. Christopher Luxon will be the next Prime Minister of New Zealand.

  • After six years of liberal rule, New Zealand elected conservative leader Christopher Luxon as Prime Minister.
  • He has secured a decisive victory in the recent election.
  • The liberal government was led by Jacinda Ardern for most of the time.
  • Luxon’s National Party had won around 40% of the vote. He will form the government in alliance with the libertarian ACT Party.
  • The Labour Party won around 25% of the vote, which is around half the proportion it got in the last election.
  • Luxon has promised tax cuts for middle-income earners and to control crime.
  • He has also promised to abolish the Māori Health Authority, which he says created two separate health systems.
  • Chris Hipkins is the current Prime Minister of New Zealand.
  • Political system of New Zealand:
    • It has an unwritten constitution and is a constitutional monarchy.
    • It has three branches of government:
      • Legislature (Parliament)
      • Executive branch (Elected Government)
      • Judiciary
    • Parliament is made up of the House of Representatives and the Governor-General.
    • The members of the House are elected for three years using the Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) voting system.

Topic: Reports and Indices

2. World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) has released a report titled ‘The High Cost of Cheap Water’ on the occasion of World Food Day.

  • According to the report, the global water crisis threatens $58 trillion in economic value. It also threatens food security and sustainability.
  • This amount is a first-ever yearly estimate of the economic value of water and freshwater ecosystems.
  • As per the report, the amount is equivalent to 60% of global gross domestic product.
  • The analysis has been done in collaboration with Dalberg Advisors, a strategy consulting firm.
  • Water and freshwater ecosystems have both direct and indirect benefits.
  • Direct economic benefits include water consumption for households, irrigated agriculture and industries.
  • The direct economic benefits amount to a minimum of $7.5 trillion annually, as per the report.
  • Unseen benefits are seven times higher at approximately $50 trillion annually.
  • Unseen benefits include purifying water, enhancing soil health, storing carbon, and protecting communities from extreme floods and droughts.
  • The report gives an example of Europe’s Danube basin. The Danube is the 2nd longest river of Europe, after the Volga.
  • According to the report, unsustainable agricultural practices were among the primary threats to rivers and floodplains.

Topic: State News/Tamil Nadu

3. Tamil Nadu’s first AI-based early warning system (EWS) to prevent wild elephant deaths is nearing completion.

  • This artificial intelligence (AI)-based EWS would prevent wild elephants from getting hit by trains on railway lines along the Ettimadai–Walayar section.
  • Ettimadai–Walayar section links Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
  • The Ettimadai - Walayar section of the railway passes through the Madukkarai forest range in the Coimbatore district.
  • As per the forest department officials, the installation of all 12 e-surveillance towers for the project has been completed.
  • Thermal imaging cameras have been fixed on all towers along the ‘A’ line to detect elephant movement.
  • On the 7.05 km of the Ettimadai-Walayar segment that runs through the Solakkarai Reserve Forest of the Madukkarai Range, towers for thermal imaging cameras have been installed.

Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

4. International Conclave on Mainstreaming Climate Change into International Fisheries Governance and Strengthening of Fisheries Management Measures in the Indo-Pacific Region inaugurated on 17th October 2023 at Mahabalipuram, Chennai.

  • Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Shri Parshottam Rupala and Minister of State for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Dr. L. Murugan inaugurated it.
  • The Department of Fisheries, under the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying of the Government of India, hosts this International Conclave.
  • Union Minister Shri Parshottam Rupala also inaugurated a Brainstorming Session on India's Preparedness for Adapting to Climate Change in Marine Fisheries.
  • FAO senior officials, representatives from Regional Fisheries Bodies (RFBs), and national research institutes under various ministries participated in the event.
  • A Scoping Workshop on “Mainstreaming LiFE (Lifestyle for Environment) for Fisheries Management” was held as a side event.
  • PM Modi had launched Mission LiFE at the 2021 UN Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC COP26).
  • The 35th session of the Committee on Fisheries (COFI35) recognized that the RFBs have to effectively engage with the member countries on the topic of climate change. It was held in Rome from 5-9 September 2022.

Topic: Awards and Prizes

5. On 17 October, the 69th National Film Awards conferred by President Draupadi Murmu in New Delhi.

  • The Best Actor award was given to Allu Arjun for Pushpa: The Rise.
  • The Best Actress award was given to Alia Bhatt for Gangubai Kathiawadi and Kriti Sanon for Mimi.
  • 'Rocketry: The Nambi Effect' directed by R Madhavan was awarded the Best Feature Film of the year 2021.
  • The Dadasaheb Phalke Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Waheeda Rehman.
  • The National Film Awards were established in 1954.
  • Since 1973, the Directorate of Film Festivals of India annually administers the festival along with other major film events in India.
  • The List of Winners is as follows:



Best Feature Film


Best Director

Nikhil Mahajan, Godavari

Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment


Nargis Dutt Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration

The Kashmir Files

Best Actor

Allu Arjun, Pushpa

Best Actress

Alia Bhatt, Gangubai Kathiawadi


Kriti Sanon, Mimi

Best Supporting Actor

Pankaj Tripathi, Mimi

Best Supporting Actress

Pallavi Joshi, The Kashmir Files

Best Child Artist

Bhavin Rabari, Chhello Show

Best Screenplay (Original)

Shahi Kabir, Nayattu

Best Music Director (Songs)

Devi Sri Prasad, Pushpa

Best Music Direction (Background Music)

MM Keeravaani, RRR

Best Male Playback Singer

Kaala Bhairava, RRR

Best Female Playback Singer

Shreya Ghoshal, Iravin Nizhal

Best Hindi Film

Sardar Udham

Best Gujarati Film

The Chhello Show

Indira Gandhi Award for Best Debut Film of a Director

Meppadiyan, Vishnu Mohan

69th National Film Awards

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

6. IndiaSkills 2023-24 launched by Shri Dharmendra Pradhan.

  • On 17 October, Union Minister Shri Dharmendra Pradhan launched the IndiaSkills 2023-24 competition and felicitated the WorldSkills 2022 winners at an event held at Kaushal Bhawan, New Delhi.
  • India has secured the 11th position in the global competition, which is its best ranking so far.
  • The WorldSkills Competition 2022 was held from September to November 2022 across Europe, North America, and East Asia, featuring over 1,000 competitors from 58 countries across 61 skills.
  • The competition was hosted by 15 countries in more than 20 cities.
  • India participated in 50 skills and finished 11th at the WSC 2022 with 2 silver medals, 3 bronze medals, and 13 medals for excellence.
  • Indian competitors representing the country at the WorldSkills Competition 2022 were selected through the IndiaSkills Competition 2021.
  • The World Skills Competition is the world's largest skills competition, held once every two years.
  • It is run by WorldSkills International, which has 86 member countries.
  • These competitions provide both a benchmark for high performance and an objective way to assess business excellence.
  • The duration of the competition is 4 days, 16 to 22 hours.

IndiaSkills 2023-24

(Source: News on AIR)

UP GK - Uttar Pradesh General Knowledge

Monthly Current Affairs eBooks
September Monthly Current Affairs August Monthly Current Affairs
July Monthly Current Affairs June Monthly Current Affairs

Topic: Reports and Indices

7. India’s rank on the Global Pension Index 2023 declines to 45th position out of 47 countries.

  • In 2022, India was ranked at 41st position out of 44 countries. In 2021, India was ranked at 40th out of 43 countries.
  • India’s score improved slightly from 44.4 in 2022 to 45.9 in 2023.
  • The report says India’s score improved mainly due to an improvement in the adequacy and sustainability sub-indices.
  • Globally, the Netherlands is ranked at the first place. It is followed by Iceland and Denmark. Argentina is ranked last on the index.
  • Mercer and CFA Institute have released the 15th annual Mercer CFA Institute Global Pension Index (MCGPI).
  • The Netherlands had the highest overall index value (85.0). Iceland had an overall index value of 83.5.
  • Denmark had an overall index value of 81.3. Argentina had the lowest index value (42.3).
  • Global Pension Index 2023 compares 47 retirement income systems. It covers 64% of the world's population.
  • It includes three new retirement income systems. They are Botswana, Croatia, and Kazakhstan.
  • It uses the weighted average of the sub-indices of adequacy, sustainability, and integrity and measures each retirement system against more than 50 indicators.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

8. The Department of Land Resources (DOLR) and the National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) have signed a MoU.

  • This MoU is for monitoring of Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana - Watershed Development Component, WDC 2.O.
  • By using, conserving, and improving deteriorated natural resources like soil and water, it aims to restore the ecological balance.
  • Ajay Tirkey, Secretary of the Department of Land Resources, and Somanath, Secretary of the Department of Space, attended the signing of the MoU in New Delhi. 
  • This MoU will aid in better utilization of wasteland and help in groundwater recharge.
  • National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) is located in Hyderabad, Telangana. It is one of the centres of the Indian Space Research Organisation.
  • Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana - Watershed Development Component, WDC 2.O is being implemented for the period of 2021-26.

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

9. Dharmendra Pradhan launched a web portal ‘Apna Chandrayaan’ on 17 October.

  • Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan launched a web portal with colouring books, online quizzes and jigsaw puzzles on India’s Chandrayaan mission.
  • It will have online interactive quizzes for the Preparatory, Middle, and Secondary levels with explanatory feedback for responses.
  • Digital certificates will be issued for all those who score more than 70%, and the first 1000 winners will receive age-appropriate books.
  • Jigsaw Puzzles and Picture Builders for the Foundational, Preparatory, Middle, and Secondary levels have also been developed on this portal.
  • These activity-based support materials for school students have been developed by the NCERT under the aegis of the Department of School Education & Literacy (DoSEL), Ministry of Education.
  • 10 special modules on Chandrayaan-3 were also launched to provide a comprehensive overview of the moon mission’s various facts including scientific, technological, and social aspects
  • Dharmendra Pradhan suggested making an app for the web portal to make it more accessible facilitating self-learning among students.
  • The Chandrayaan 3 journey represents gumption, scientific temper, curiosity, problem-solving and creativity qualities.

Apna Chandrayaan’

(Source: PIB)

Topic: National News

10. Government is planning to implement 'One Nation, One ID' for students.

  • Union Ministry of Education is planning to create a unique identification number, Automated Permanent Academic Account Registry (APAAR), for every student from pre-primary to higher education.
  • As part of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020, the government is planning to create a 'One Nation, One Student ID' for every student.
  • Automated Permanent Academic Account Registry (APAAR) will be in addition to the 12-digit Aadhaar ID.
  • The APAAR ID will help in tracking students' academic journey and achievements.
  • The APAAR ID, an Education Ecosystem Registry or edulocker, will also help students in storing all achievements like exam results, learning outcomes, achievements in the Olympiad or sports, etc.
  • The Ministry of Education has directed all states and UTs to start the process of creating APAAR IDs for students.
  • The data captured for Aadhaar ID will be the basis of the APAAR ID.

Topic: Art and Culture

11. On October 15, the ten-day Mysuru Dasara festival started in the Chamundi Hills.

  • This year, popular music director Hamsalekha formally inaugurated the event in Karnataka.
  • Mysuru Dasara is celebrated as the 'embodiment of the culture of Karnataka'.
  • The ten-day event will continue till October 24 with various cultural activities planned in Mysuru.
  • On 24 October, the festival will ends with the Vijayadashami or Dasara procession and torchlight parade at Bannimantap ground.

Topic: Important Days

12. International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 2023: 17 October

  • Every year on 17 October, International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is celebrated.
  • The theme of International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 2023 is "Decent Work and Social Protection: Putting Dignity in Practice for All."
  • On October 17, 1987, the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty was first observed.
  • On 22 December 1992, the UN General Assembly declared 17 October as the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.
  • The day also marks the anniversary of the call to action by Father Joseph Wresinski, which started the celebration of the World Day for Overcoming Extreme Poverty on 17 October.
  • Poverty is not only an economic issue but is a multidimensional phenomenon. It comes with a lack of both income and the basic capabilities to live in dignity.
  • The General Assembly proclaimed the Third UN Decade for the Eradication of Poverty (2018-2027) in its resolution 72/233.
  • The first UN Decade for the Eradication of Poverty was from 1997 to 2006, while the second UN Decade for the Eradication of Poverty was from 2008 to 2017.
  • According to UNDP, the share of the world's workers living in extreme poverty halved from 14.3% in 2010 to 7.1% in 2019.

Topic: Indian Polity

13. Supreme Court refused to legalise same-sex marriage.

  • Supreme Court in its verdict refused to grant legal recognition to same-sex marriages.
  • Supreme Court bench led by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud refused to recognise marriage as a fundamental right.
  • A five-judge constitution bench comprising Chief Justice of India (CJI) D Y Chandrachud and justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, S Ravindra Bhat, Hima Kohli and P S Narasimha gave four separate judgments.
  • In a 3:2 decision, Supreme Court said that there are no adoption rights for queer couples.
  • Supreme Court leaves the legislature the task of deciding whether same-sex marriage should be given legal status or not.
  • CJI DY Chandrachud directed the Union government and the State governments to ensure that queer people are not discriminated against on the basis of their sexual orientation.
  • SC agreed that words cannot be read into the provisions of the Special Marriage Act for it to include same-sex couples.
  • Supreme Court supported a government proposal to establish a panel to consider bestowing certain rights and benefits to same-sex couples.
  • As of 2023, marriage between same-sex couples is legal in 34 countries. Estonia will become the 35th country to legalize marriage between same-sex couples from 1 January 2024.

Topic: Summits/ Conferences/ Meetings

14. Gitex Global 2023, a five-day tech extravaganza, begins in Dubai.

  • The 43rd edition of the annual UAE technology extravaganza, Gitex Global, will be organized from 16th -20th October.
  • ‘The year to imagine AI in everything' is the theme of the Gitex Global 2023.
  • The event will be the epicentre for the latest innovations and trends in AI (artificial intelligence), cloud computing, Web 3.0, cybersecurity, climate technology, etc.
  • It is one of the oldest exhibitions, which was started in 1981.
  • More than 250 government entities are participating in the event.
  • The main focus of the event will be on the profound themes of the AI era and exploring the ethical, security, and innovative dimensions of AI technology.
  • The India Pavilion is presented by Nasscom at Gitex Global 2023. It showcased emerging tech like AI, blockchain, AR, and VR.

Gitex Global 2023

(Source: News on AIR)

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