Daily Current Affairs and GK | 19 April 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 19 Apr 2023 18:52 PM IST

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Current Affairs 19 April 2023 are prepared after thorough research for the competitive exams in India. You can go through the important 19 April 2023 Current Affairs and then attempt the Current Affairs Quiz 19 April 2023.

Topic: International News

1. WTO panel ruled that India violated trading rules with the EU and others over import duties on IT products.

  • A World Trade Organization panel ruled that India has violated global trading rules against the European Union, Japan and Taiwan over import duties on IT products.
  • The EU, Japan and Taiwan challenged the import duties by India on certain IT products in 2019.
  • The EU had challenged India’s import duties between 7.5 per cent and 20 per cent on many products like mobile phones, mobile phone components and accessories, line telephone handsets, static converters or electric wires and cables.
  • These countries had argued that the import duties levy badly affected their trade with India and violated certain provisions of the WTO.
  • They also claimed that India has committed to zero percent bound tariffs on these products.
  • WTO upheld all EU claims against India and found that import duties on certain ICT products are not in accordance with India’s WTO commitments.
  • India is a signatory to the 1996 Information Technology Agreement (ITA), so it has to eliminate tariffs on a range of products, including mobile handsets.
  • India argued that at the time of signing the ITA, products such as smartphones did not exist and hence, it is not bound to eliminate tariffs on such items.
  • India can appeal against the WTO panel's decision.

Topic: Important Days

2. World Liver Day: 19 April

  • World Liver Day is observed across the world on 19 April.
  • It is celebrated to raise awareness about liver-related diseases and disorders.
  • The liver is a highly complex organ of the body. It is responsible for immunity, digestion and metabolism.
  • As per World Health Organization, liver ailments are the 10th most common reason for death in India.
  • ‘Be Vigilant, Do Regular Liver Check-Up, Fatty Liver Can Affect Anyone.’ is the theme for World Liver Day 2023.
  • The liver is the human body’s second most vital organ. Inactive lifestyle, excessive alcohol consumption, unhealthy food and lack of exercise cause liver disorders.
  • Abdominal pain, loss of appetite, jaundice, and weight loss are common symptoms of liver disorders.

Topic: Awards and Prizes

3. Utsa Patnaik has been chosen for the Malcolm Adiseshiah Award 2023.

  • Utsa Patnaik is a renowned economist of national and international repute.
  • The Malcolm & Elizabeth Adiseshiah Trust gives this award every year.
  • The prestigious national award honours outstanding social scientists.
  • Utsa Patnaik will be given the award with a citation and prize money of ₹2 lakh at a function that will be held in Chennai.
  • The Trust will soon announce the date of this event.
  • Utsa Patnaik is an Indian Marxian economist.

Topic: Space and IT

4. Singapore’s TeLEOS-2 satellite will be launched by ISRO on 22 April.

  • It will be launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota.
  • TeLEOS-2 will be launched using the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV). This launch will be the PSLV’s 55th mission.
  • TeLEOS-2 is an Earth Observation Satellite developed by ST Engineering.
  • ISRO launched TeLEOS-1 in 2015. TeLEOS-1 was the first Singapore commercial Earth Observation Satellite.
  • It was launched into a low Earth orbit for remote sensing applications.
  • ISRO has till now launched nine satellites of Singapore.
  • The PSLV-C55 is ISRO’s third launch this year.
  • TeLEOS-2 is a 750kg earth observation satellite that has synthetic aperture radar capable of providing data in 1-metre resolution.

Topic: State News/ Kerala

5. Kerala adopted water budget for first time to deal with water shortage in summer.

  • On 17 April, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan released the Public Water Budget.
  • Kerala became the first state to adopt a water budget to address water scarcity in some areas.
  • In the first phase of the project, 94 Gram Panchayats and 15 Block Panchayats will be covered.
  • CM also launched the third phase of the Ini Njan Ozhukatte (Let me flow now) project, for the rehabilitation of irrigation networks in the Western Ghats.
  • In 2019, the idea of a water budget was first mooted by Kerala.
  • The budget gives data about the availability of water at a particular place and its consumption on the basis of population in the area.
  • The Water Resources Development Management Center and the State Water Department prepared the budget.
  • As part of the Ini Njan Ozukate project, the state has recovered hundreds of water bodies and will use satellite data to assess the status of water bodies in 230-gram panchayats in its third phase.
  • During the first and second phases, about 7,290 km of irrigation network was rejuvenated.
  • Though the state has about 44 rivers and many other water bodies, some parts face acute water shortage during the summer season.

Topic: International News

6. Syria has become the largest 'narco-state' in the world.

  • The production and export of Captagon, which is also known as the "poor man's coke," has become a crucial source of economic sustenance for Syria.
  • This highly addictive Captagon has become the primary lifeline of the country's economy, generating over 90% of its foreign exchange.
  • "Narco-State" means a nation where a significant portion of the economy is dependent on the illegal trade in narcotic drugs.
  • Captagon's widespread presence and profitability in Syria has raised concerns about the devastating impact of drug trafficking on the country's social fabric, health and security.
  • Captagon is a synthetic stimulant that combines amphetamine and caffeine. Captagon was classified as an illegal drug by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in 2021.
  • In 1961, Captagon was originally introduced by a German pharmaceutical company for medical purposes.
  • Later, Captagon was found to be highly addictive and harmful to mental and physical health, leading to its prohibition.
  • Captagon is a highly sought-after recreational drug among young people in the Gulf countries, commonly known as "party pills".

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Topic: National News

7. Eight projects worth around 638 crore rupees have been approved by National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG).

  • Out of these, four projects were approved for pollution abatement in the Shamli district.
  • These projects amounting to around 407 crore rupees were approved with the aim to clean River Hindon, a tributary of River Yamuna.
  • These projects are part of the comprehensive Hindon Rejuvenation Plan. Hindon is identified as Priority-I polluted river stretch.
  • One project for the development of seven ghats was approved as part of preparations for the Mahakumbh in Prayagraj in Uttar Pradesh in 2025.
  • These ghats include Dashashmedh Ghat, Quila Ghat, Gyan Ganga Ashram Ghat and Saraswati Ghat.
  • One sewerage management project was approved each for Bihar and Madhya Pradesh.
  • In Bihar, a project to construct three Sewage Treatment Plants was approved.
  • These projects will prevent the flow of polluted water into River Kiul, a tributary of the Ganga.
  • In Madhya Pradesh, a project to construct a 22 Million Litres per Day Sewage Treatment Plant was approved.
  • It will stop the flow of polluted water into River Kshipra, which is a sub-tributary of Yamuna.
  • Another project for ghat development has been approved for Haridwar in Uttarakhand. In Haridwar, Akhand Param Dham ghat will be constructed.

Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

8. India Steel 2023 inaugurated by Minister of State for Steel Faggan Singh Kulaste.

  • India Steel 2023 is a conference and exhibition on the steel industry. It started in Mumbai on 19 April 2023.
  • The Steel Ministry, the Commerce Ministry and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry are jointly organising it.
  • It is being attended by industry leaders, policymakers and experts.
  • During the conference, attendees will discuss the topics like logistics infrastructure, demand dynamics and green steel production.
  • The conference is being held at the Bombay Exhibition Centre in Goregaon.  It will continue till 21 April 2023.
  • India Steel 2023 is the 5th international exhibition cum conference on the steel industry.
  • The fourth edition of India Steel was organized on 22-24 January 2019 in Mumbai.
  • It was jointly organized by the Ministry of Steel and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

Topic: Indian Polity

9. SC set up a five-judge Constitution bench to hear same-sex marriage petitions.

  • Five-judge Constitution bench led by Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud has been formed to hear petitions seeking legal recognition of same-sex marriage.
  • Besides the CJI, the bench comprises Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Ravindra Bhat, Hima Kohli and PS Narasimha
  • In March 2023, the Supreme Court had sent the petitions to the constitution bench.
  • The petitions involve the conflict between constitutional rights and specific legislative enactments, including the Special Marriage Act, 1954.
  • Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the petitioners said that the LGBTQ community should have the right to a life of dignity and marriage and family.
  • Abhijit Iyer Mitra, a senior research fellow at the Institute of Peace & Conflict Studies, raised the issue for the first time in the Delhi High Court in November 2020.
  • On September 6, 2018, the SC decriminalised consensual gay sex between adults in the Navtej Singh Johar verdict.
  • As per Article 145 (3), cases that involve a substantial question of law relating to the interpretation of the Constitution should be heard by at least five judges.
  • At present, Same-sex marriages are legal in 32 countries, including the US, Australia, Canada and France.
  • Taiwan is the only Asian country to legalise same-sex marriage in 2019.

Topic: Indian Economy

10. Bengaluru has topped in digital payment transactions in 2022.

  • Bengaluru with 29 million transactions worth USD 65 billion emerged on top in digital payment transactions.
  • New Delhi with 19.6 million transactions worth USD 50 billion and Mumbai with 18.7 million transactions worth USD 49.5 billion are in second and third spots.
  • Pune and Chennai are also among the top 5 in digital payment transactions in 2022
  • According to the report, physical merchants like grocery stores, restaurants, clothing and apparel, pharmacy, etc. accounted for over 43 per cent of digital transactions in terms of volume and about 40 per cent in terms of value.
  • Around 85% of digital transactions in terms of volume are related to E-commerce space, gaming, utility and financial services.
  • Education, travel and hospitality sector contributed 15 per cent in digital transactions volume and 75 per cent in terms of value.

Topic: Environment and Ecology

11. Three-day Regional Pollution Response Exercise (RPREX-2023) was conducted by ICG at Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh.

  • The exercise was conducted to check the operational efficiency of Indian Coast Guard (ICG) units, oil handling agencies, state administration, and other stakeholders to respond to an incident of an oil spill at sea.
  • On 11 April, tabletop exercises were conducted, followed by sea exercises on 12 April.
  • On 13 April, three days of activities concluded with a shore cleaning exercise.
  • The sea exercise simulated oil pollution due to collision and damage of an oil tanker off Kakinada and response was given by six ICG ships.
  • This included one pollution control vessel, and one each on Dornier aircraft and helicopters, maritime assets of ONGC, RIL, Vedanta and KSPL.
  • During the exercise, Kakinada District Administration and AP Pollution Control Board in collaboration with each other demonstrated shoreline cleanup capabilities by simulating an oil slick at NTR Beach in Kakinada.
  • RPREX-23 saw large scale participation of all stakeholders, resource agencies and district administration in a coordinated effort to address any spillage situation at sea.

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

12. "Sangathan se Samriddhi" campaign launched by the Government on 18 April.

  • The "Sangathan Se Samriddhi campaign" has been launched by Rural Development Minister Giriraj Singh from 18 April to 30 June, 2023.
  • The scheme will empower all eligible marginal rural women by bringing them under Self Help Groups.
  • The theme of the campaign is “Leaving no rural woman behind”.
  • The government aims to connect ten crore women with self-help groups. At present this number is nine crores.
  • In May 2014, this number was only 2 crore 35 lakh, which has now increased to more than 9 crores.
  • The government has set a target of increasing the income of each woman associated with self-help groups to Rs 1 lakh per year.
  • Mr. Singh has also appealed to the women to make coarse grain products.

Sangathan se Samriddhi campaign

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Indian Economy

13. WPI based inflation declined to 1.34% in March 2023 from 3.85% in February 2023.

  • Wholesale Price Index (WPI) based inflation in March 2023 is lowest in 29 months. It declined mainly due to fall in food prices.
  • The food index in March 2023 rose 2.32% year-on-year as against 2.76% in February 2023.
  • Fuel and power basket inflation declined to 8.96% in March 2023 from 14.82% in February 2023.  
  • In manufactured products, inflation was (-)0.77% in March 2023.
  • Inflation in wheat and pulses was 9.16% and 3.03%, respectively in March 2023.
  • Inflation in vegetables was (-)2.22% in March 2023. Inflation in oilseeds was (-) 15.05% in March 2023.

Topic: National News

14. Central Government has notified Animal Birth Control Rules 2023.

  • The rules have been notified under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act, 1960 and after superseding the Animal Birth Control (Dog) Rules, 2001.
  • The Rules have addressed the guidelines of the Supreme Court in the Writ Petition of 2009 between Animal Welfare Board of India and People for Elimination of Stray Troubles.
  • Respective local bodies/municipalities/Municipal Corporations and Panchayats should carry out Animal Birth Control Programme for the sterilization and immunisation of stray dogs.
  • This will minimise the population of stray dogs thereby addressing animal welfare issues.
  • The Municipal Corporations need to implement the ABC and Anti Rabies Program jointly.
  • Animal Birth Control Programme needs to be carried out by AWBI recognized organization specifically recognised for Animal Birth Control programme.
  • The rules also give guidelines on how to deal with human-stray dog conflicts without the relocation of dogs.
  • Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI):
    • It is a statutory body that was established in 1962 under Section 4 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960.
    • It advises Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying.
    • It was set up by Rukmini Devi Arundale, the first chairperson of AWBI.
    • The Board has 28 Members whose term of office is 3 years.
    • AWBI is headquartered at Ballabhgarh, Haryana.
    • Current Chairman of AWBI: Dr. O P Chaudhary
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