Daily Current Affairs and GK | 20 April 2022
- 1. Telangana has launched SpaceTech Framework.
- 2. 8th National Level Pollution Response Exercise (NATPOLREX) has been inaugurated.
- 3. Shoojit Sircar has been honored with Director of the Year award in film category of 2021 AIMA Managing India Awards.
- 4. Scientists discovered a new species of shrimp in Lakshadweep.
- 5. IPGA assigned Bimal Kothari as its next chairman.
- 6. Agriculture Minister launched two online portals, CROP, and PQMS.
- 7. PMGKP Insurance Scheme for Health Care Workers Fighting COVID-19 has been further extended.
- 8. Director General of BRO Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhary said that world’s longest highway tunnel will be ready by 2025.
- 9. India and Maldives signed MoUs for implementing community development projects.
- 10. Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs organized ‘Smart Cities, Smart Urbanization’ Conference in Surat.
- 11. Trishakti Corps conducted ‘Kripan Shakti’ exercise in West Bengal.
- 12. Tropical Storm Megi hit Philippines.
- 13. Lloyd ropes in Sourav Ganguly as brand ambassador.
- 14. Ministry of Roads, Transport and Highways developed a portal named ‘e-DAR’.
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Topic: State News/Telangana
1. Telangana has launched SpaceTech Framework.
- The framework aims to help state emerge as a commercial hub for all products and services related to space.
- The framework also aims at promoting domestic production of launch vehicles, satellite systems and other facilities.
- The launch event was the first ever official government event, which was hosted on Metaverse.
- Telangana’s SpaceTech NFT (Non Fungible Token) collection was also launched by Industries and IT Minister KT Rama Rao.
- He said Telangana had launched the ‘Medicine from the sky’ project.
- It was for drone-based aerial deliveries of healthcare products. It was the first and largest such project in the country.
- Telangana also used drones for aerial seeding and developed India’s first smartphone-based e-voting.
Topic: Environment and Ecology
2. 8th National Level Pollution Response Exercise (NATPOLREX) has been inaugurated.
- Eighth NATPOLREX is being conducted by Indian Coast Guard off Mormugao harbour in Goa.
- It has been inaugurated by Union Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar. It is a two-day exercise.
- More than 85 participants from 50 agencies and 2 Coast Guard ships from Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are taking part in NATPOLREX.
- Its objective is to validate procedures and guidelines contained in the National Oil Spill Disaster Contingency Plan under the aegis of SACEP MoU.
- South Asia Cooperative Environment Programme (SACEP):
- SACEP was established in 1982. It is an inter-governmental organization. It is headquartered in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
- India is a member of South Asia Cooperative Environment Programme (SACEP).
Topic: Awards and Prizes
3. Shoojit Sircar has been honored with Director of the Year award in film category of 2021 AIMA Managing India Awards.
- He has won the award for Sardar Udham. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari presented the awards in multiple categories.
- Young entrepreneurs as well as science-based companies have also been recognized in this year’s awards.
- The AIMA Managing India Awards were constituted in 2010, to promote management in every sphere of life.
- Different categories of the award and their winners are given below.
- Outstanding Contribution to Media - Palki Sharma, Shereen Bhan
- Young Entrepreneur Award - Harsh Jain & Bhavit Sheth
- Emerging Business Leader of Year - Satyanarayana Chava
- MNC in India of the Year - Nestle India
- Indian MNC of the Year - Serum Institute of India
- Outstanding PSU of the Year - ISRO
- Lifetime Contribution to Media - Shekhar Gupta
- Business Leader of the Year - Adar Poonawalla
- Corporate Citizen Award - Anil Agarwal
- Transformational Business Leader - N Chandrasekaran
Topic: Environment and Ecology
4. Scientists discovered a new species of shrimp in Lakshadweep.
- Scientists of ICAR-National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources (NBFGR) have discovered a new species of shrimp.
- This new species has been named ‘Actinimenes koyas’ in honour of the local community on the Lakshadweep islands.
- A team of scientists have found it at a depth of 1.0–2.0 m from the coral atoll of Agatti Island. This new species is different from other species of shrimp in structure.
- The National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources (NBFGR) is conducting surveys for finding different fish and shrimp species in Lakshadweep.
- Scientists have recently discovered two species of shrimp: Periclimenella agattii and Arabianensis.
- The National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources (NBFGR) is also planning to document water organisms from different islands of Lakshadweep.
Topic: National Appointment
5. IPGA assigned Bimal Kothari as its next chairman.
- Bimal Kothari has been appointed as the new Chairman of the India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA), the apex body for India's pulses trade and industry, with immediate effect.
- He has succeeded Jeetu Bheda, who stepped down as the current chairman.
- After Pravin Dongre and Jitu Bheda, Bimal Kothari became the association's third chairman.
- One of the key founding members of the association, Kothari has been the Vice President of IPGA since 2011.
- India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA):
- It was formed in 2011.
- Its headquarters are in Mumbai.
- IPGA is registered under Section 8 of the Companies Act 2013 (formerly Section 25 of the Companies Act 1956) and has approximately 400 members, including regional associations in the pulses sector.
- The association has a reach of over 10,000 stakeholders involved in the cultivation, processing, storage, and import business of pulses across the entire value chain.
Topic: Agriculture and Allied Sectors
6. Agriculture Minister launched two online portals, CROP, and PQMS.
- At an occasion in New Delhi, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar launched two online portals for the Plant Protection Division: Comprehensive Registration of Pesticides (CROP) and Plant Quarantine Management System (PQMS).
- The Department of Agriculture launched two redeveloped online portals for faster processing of applications related to agricultural commodity export and import and pesticide registration and to bring in greater transparency in the existing online system.
- Mr Tomar stated that the portals will boost ease of doing business and assist traders in export and imports.
- Farmers, exporters as well as industrialists will benefit from the new portal.
- The PQMS portal will provide a transparent system with no physical touchpoints for the applicants. It will provide online services like e-payments and uploading of documents, online accreditation and renewal of treatment agencies/facilities and downloading of certificates.
- Similarly, the revamped CROP Portal will help in ease of doing business and provide timely crop protection solutions to the farmers of the country.
- Department of Agriculture had engaged CGG, Hyderabad for design, development, technical support maintenance for PQMS and also for hosting of e-Governance solutions of redeveloped CROP.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
7. PMGKP Insurance Scheme for Health Care Workers Fighting COVID-19 has been further extended.
- Union Government has extended the scheme for further 180 days from 19th April 2022.
- Union Government has taken the decision to extend the scheme so as to continue to provide the safety net to the dependents of health workers.
- Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package (PMGKP) was launched in March 2020 to provide comprehensive personal accident cover of 50 lakh rupees to 22.12 lakh health care providers.
- These 22.12 lakh health care providers include community health workers and private health workers.
- The scheme also covers private hospital staff requisitioned by States and Central Hospitals specifically for the care of COVID-19 patients.
Topic: National News
8. Director General of BRO Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhary said that world’s longest highway tunnel will be ready by 2025.
- The tunnel will be beneath Shinku La Pass between Lahul valley, Himachal Pradesh and Zanskar valley, UT of Ladakh.
- The tunnel will provide all-weather connectivity between Himachal and Ladakh.
- The length of tunnel will be 4.25km. It will be highest and longest tunnel at an altitude of about 16,000 feet in the entire world.
- BRO DG Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhary attended golden handshake ceremony for opening of Nimmu-Padum-Darcha road.
- Nimmu-Padum-Darcha road is part of BRO’s Yojak project, which was created last year.
- BRO DG Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhary has been honored with 13th CIDC Vishwakarma Achievement Award 2022 for Public Officer (From Govt and Public Sector).
- Atal Tunnel is world’s longest highway tunnel above 10,000 feet. BRO has earlier built ‘World’s Highest Motorable Road’ at Umling-La Pass at 1,9300 Feet.
- Construction of Sela Tunnel is underway. It will be the world’ longest bi-lane road tunnel at an altitude above 13000 feet.
9. India and Maldives signed MoUs for implementing community development projects.
- Seven Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) have been signed between India and Maldives for projects to be built under the Indian grant assistance scheme for the High Impact Community Development Project through local bodies (HICDP).
- These projects will promote youth empowerment, health, sports and heritage preservation and the socio-economic development of local communities.
- The MoUs have been signed by Abdulla Shahid and Indian High Commissioner Munu Mahawar.
- The projects include establishing a mental health centre, a speech therapy unit, a prosthetics and orthotics manufacturing workshop, and multi-sports complex and developing youth centres
- The total worth of the projects launched under the signed MoUs is around 26.8 million Rufiya.
- India and Maldives governments signed the first such MoU in 2019.
- Apart from these seven projects launched, eighteen projects are currently underway under this grant scheme.
Topic: Summits/ Conferences/ Meetings
10. Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs organized ‘Smart Cities, Smart Urbanization’ Conference in Surat.
- The 3-day “Smart Cities, Smart Urbanization” conference has been organized by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs in association with Surat Smart City Corporation Development Ltd.
- Municipal Commissioners of Cities, MDs/CEOs of 100 Smart Cities, State Level Nodal Agencies/ Mission Directorates, professionals, and industry representatives have participated in this conference.
- During the conference, winners of the India Smart Cities Awards Contest (ISAC) 2020 were also felicitated.
- Surat and Indore got the Best city award, while Uttar Pradesh was awarded the Best State award.
- Urban Outcomes Framework 2022 has been also released at the conference. Smart Cities Mission also launched a comprehensive dashboard with Outcome Output Management Framework (OOMF) dashboard.
- ‘Smart Cities Smart Urbanization' mega conclave was organized on the first day of the conference.
- ‘Digital Duniya’ pavilion was also inaugurated at the Conference to highlight the initiatives that empower communities through data and digital technology.
- A Smart Finance pavilion named ‘finance ka adda’ has been launched for helping cities in identifying untapped sources of revenue.
11. Trishakti Corps conducted ‘Kripan Shakti’ exercise in West Bengal.
- Kripan Shakti, an Integrated Fire Power exercise, was conducted at Teesta Field Firing Ranges (TFFR) near Siliguri in West Bengal.
- The main aim of the exercise is to synergize the capabilities of the Indian Army and the Central Armed Police Forces.
- During the exercise, Trishakti Corps demonstrated their ability to hit hard and swiftly with precision.
- Lt Gen Tarun Kumar Aich General Officer Commanding Trishakti Corps reviewed the exercise.
- The exercise will strengthen the ties between the Indian Army, civil administration and Central Armed Police Forces.
- Mortars, infantry combat vehicles, helicopters and guns were used during this exercise.
- During the exercise, the swift action by Special Heliborne troops and rapid deployment of arty guns was done with exact precision.
12. Tropical Storm Megi hit Philippines.
- Around 167 people died in landslides and floods after Tropical Storm ‘Megi’ hit the Philippines.
- Villages around Baybay city are badly hit by the storm. In one village, about 80% of the houses were washed out in the flood.
- Deaths reports have also come from the southern Davao region, Mindanao and the central Negros Orientals province.
- The Philippines typically sees such storms for an average of 20 years. Four months earlier, Super Typhoon Rai had devasted the southeast part of the Philippines Island.
- According to scientists, human-caused climate change activities have increased the intensity and power of tropical storms.
- The Philippines is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate disasters due to its geography.
- Tropical cyclones are mainly of various categories depending upon the speed of the wind. It includes tropical storms, tropical cyclones, hurricanes, etc.
13. Lloyd ropes in Sourav Ganguly as brand ambassador.
- Ganguly will endorse various products of Lloyd. He will help the company in expanding in the Eastern Indian markets.
- Lloyd is a brand of Electrical goods company Havells India.
- Sourav Ganguly is the current President of BCCI.
- Other Brand ambassadors:
- KL Rahul becomes the brand ambassador of Men’s innerwear and comfort wear brand XYXX.
- Wholsum Foods announced Anushka Sharma as their brand ambassador.
- Kingfisher named Rashmika Mandanna and Varun Dhawan as its brand ambassadors.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
14. Ministry of Roads, Transport and Highways developed a portal named ‘e-DAR’.
- The ‘e-DAR’ (e-Detailed Accident Report) portal has been developed to upload Digitalised Detailed Accident Reports (DAR).
- The web portal will be linked to the Integrated Road Accident Database (iRAD). e-DAR would be an extension and e-version of iRAD.
- The ‘e-DAR’ portal will be linked to other government portals like Vaahan and help in getting information on driving license details and registration of vehicles.
- Police, Road Authority, Hospitals, etc. have to enter every minimum information for e-DAR form.
- The portal will provide geo-tagging of the exact location of the accident with the site map.
- Hotspots for accidents would also be identified to avoid accidents in the future.
- Details like photos, videos of the accident spot, damaged vehicles, injured victims, etc. will be uploaded on the portal immediately.