Daily Current Affairs and GK | 20 April 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 20 Apr 2023 21:05 PM IST

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Topic: State News/ Nagaland

1. Nagaland first medical college will be established after 60 years of becoming a state.

  • Nagaland Institute of Medical Sciences and Research (NIMSR) at Kohima will be the first medical college of Nagaland.
  • It has received the ‘Letter of Intent’ (LOI) from the National Medical Council (NMC)’s Medical Assessment and Rating Board (MARB).
  • The medical college will begin from the academic session 2023-24 with 100 MBBS students.
  • Out of 100 students, 85 would be from Nagaland while the remaining 15 will be reserved for other states students.
  • The Health Minister of Nagaland said that it is a historic day for the people of the north-eastern state.
  • Nagaland became the 16th state of India in 1963.
  • Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIMPER), Pondicherry is the oldest medical college in India.

Topic: State News/Uttar Pradesh

2. Uttar Pradesh will become the first state which will have 100 percent electric vehicles in government departments.

  • UP government has fixed a target to convert vehicles used in all government departments into Electric Vehicles in a phased manner by 2030.
  • UP government notified the Uttar Pradesh Electric Vehicle Manufacturing and Mobility Policy 2022 on 14 October 2022 to encourage electric vehicles in the state.
  • Under the policy, an exemption has been provided from tax and registration fees for three years on the purchase of Electric Vehicles.
  • The exemption will be valid for 5 years on the purchase of Electric Vehicles manufactured in Uttar Pradesh.
  • The state government has also relaxed the upper maximum expenditure limit on the purchase of vehicles.
  • The government has allowed the purchase of Electric Vehicles through nomination without tender.
  • It has been decided by the UP government to give up to 100% exemption on road tax and registration fees for three years to promote EVs in UP. Three years will be calculated from 14 October 2022.
  • UP government’s exemptions will be separate from the exemptions being granted by the central government.
  • A 15% subsidy will be given on the factory price of the Electric Vehicle as per the government policy in UP.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

3. An MoU has been signed by the UP government with the Government of India at Lok Bhawan in Lucknow.

  • The MoU has been signed under the PM Mega Integrated Textile Region and Apparel (PM Mitra) scheme.
  • The MoU has been signed for the establishment of 1,000-acre- textile parks in Lucknow and Hardoi districts.
  • Rohit Kansal, Additional Secretary of Textile, Government of India and Amit Mohan Prasad, Additional Chief Secretary, of Handloom and Textile Industry, MSME, Government of Uttar Pradesh exchanged MoU.
  • UP CM Yogi said this move is a step towards making UP the new textile hub of the country.
  • He said that districts like Kanpur lost their sheen in the textile industry.
  • He said the state received investment proposals worth over Rs 35 lakh crores as a result of the efforts in the last 6 years.
  • PM MITRA:
    • The government issued a notification for setting up of 7 Mega Integrated Textile Region and Apparel in 2021.
    • It was launched with a total outlay of Rs 4,445 crores.
    • It is inspired by the 5F (Farm to Fibre to Factory to Fashion to Foreign) vision
    • Sites for PM MITRA Parks are selected by a Challenge Method based on objective criteria.

Topic: New Developments

4. US-based Biofire Technologies has developed world's first biometric handgun.

  • The sale of smart guns has been announced by Biofire, a Broomfield-based company.
  • The smart guns use biometric identification and only authorized persons can fire from the gun.
  • Kai Kloepfer is the founder of Biofire. He has the vision to decrease the deaths of kids due to accidental firing and reduce the rate of suicides.
  • Identification systems of Biofire Smart Gun utilize fingerprint and facial recognition.
  • Identification systems have been integrated with its firing mechanism. The smart gun is powered by a battery.
  • Some recent models of smart guns were simply based on adding sensors to existing weapons.

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

5. Seed-related "SATHI Portal and Mobile App" launched by Union Agriculture Minister Shri Tomar on 19 April.

  • Sathi (Seed Traceability, Authentication and Holistic Inventory) portal is a Centralized Online System for seed traceability, authentication and inventory.
  • “Sathi” has been designed to deal with the challenges of seed production, quality seed identification and seed certification.
  • NIC has developed "Sathi" in collaboration with the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare on the theme of “Uttam Beej – Samriddh Kisan”.
  • The objective of the portal is to curb the sale of spurious seeds and ensure access to quality seeds to the farmers.
  • Under this system, there will be a QR code, through which the seeds can be traced.
  • The minister urged all states to join the Seed Traceability System and directed officials to expedite the rollout of the second phase of the portal.
  • Sathi portal will ensure quality assurance system and identify the source of seed in the seed production chain.
  • The system will consist of integrated 7 verticals of the seed chain - Research Organisation, Seed Certification, Seed Licensing, Seed Catalogue, Dealer to Farmer Sales, Farmer Registration and Seed DBT.
  • Seeds with valid certification can only be sold by valid licensed dealers to centrally registered farmers who can receive subsidy through DBT directly into their pre-validated bank accounts.

Saathi Portal and Mobile App

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Reports and Indices

6. India will become the world's most populous country by mid-2023.

  • India will overtake China as the world's most populous nation by the middle of this year.
  • According to the United Nations Population Fund's World Population Report, India's population is estimated to be 1.4286 billion by mid-year of 2023, compared to 1.4257 billion for China.
  • India’s population will be around 3 million more than its neighbour china.
  • The United States will be in third place with an estimated population of 340 million by the end of June.
  • China is ahead of India on most socio-economic parameters.
  • The life expectancy at birth for women in India is 74 years, in China, it is 82 years.
  • As per the International Monetary Fund, China's per capita income is projected to be 5x India's ($2,601) in 2023.
  • The total population of India was expected to be 1.388 billion in 2023 based on the 2011 census data, according to the report of the Technical Group on Population Projections under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare presented in July 2020.
  • The youth population in the age group of 15-24 years is expected to increase from 233 million in 2011 to 251 million in 2021 and then decline to 229 million in 2036.
  • Its proportion to the total population is expected to fall from 19.3% in 2011 to 15.1% in 2036.

world's most populous country by mid-2023

(Source: News on AIR)

Half Yearly Current Affairs 2022 - 2023

 
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Topic: International News

7. India and Canada have agreed to make defence an important pillar of the bilateral relationship.

  • Both countries have agreed to work on taking the defence relationship to the next level.
  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and his Canadian counterpart discussed ways to develop bilateral defence relations.
  • Both Ministers also talked about potential areas of defence cooperation from UN peacekeeping training to Defence Industrial Cooperation.
  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh invited Canadian defence companies to invest in India.
  • India established diplomatic relations with Canada in 1947.
  • India and Canada relations:
    • India established diplomatic relations with Canada in 1947.
    • Canada and India have ministerial dialogues on foreign policy, finance, energy and trade and investment.
    • The High Commission of Canada in New Delhi is home to Canada’s largest visa office abroad.
    • India was Canada’s 14th-largest export market in 2021.
    • India was Canada’s 13th largest trading partner overall in 2021.
    • India and Canada are working toward a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement and a Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA).

Topic: Awards and Prizes

8. Santokbaa Humanitarian Award has been given to Sonam Wangchuk.

  • Sonam Wangchuk was given the award on 10 April 2023, the death anniversary of Santokbaa at an award ceremony at Hotel Zen in Ladakh.
  • The First Lady of Ladakh, Neelam Mishra, was the Chief Guest of the function.
  • Neelam Mishra and Rahul Dholakia, Entrepreneur-SRK presented the award to Sonam Wangchuk.
  • Sonam Wangchuk is the Founder-Director of the Students' Educational and Cultural Movement of Ladakh (SECMOL).
  • Wangchuk invented the Ice Stupa technique. This technique creates artificial glaciers used for storing winter water in the form of a cone-shaped ice heap. This technique addresses the water crisis faced in Ladakh.
  • The award is an initiative of Shree Ramkrishna Exports (SRK) a leading diamond crafting and exports company, and its philanthropic arm Shree Ramkrishna Knowledge Foundation (SRKKF).
  • The award carries a cash prize of Rs. 1 crore. It has been instituted in memory of the Late Santokbaa Dholakia, the mother of SRK and SRKKF's Founder Chairman Govind Dholakia.
  • Previous recipients of the award are Tata Sons' former chairman Ratan Tata, Nobel Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi, Space scientist and former ISRO chairman A.S. Kiran Kumar, philanthropist and Infosys Foundation Chairperson Sudha Murty.

Topic: Geography

9. Sea surface temperatures reached at its highest level in April.

  • According to data released by the Climate Change Institute at the University of Maine, the global ocean surface temperature reached 21.1C in early April.
  • It is the highest recorded sea surface temperature. It has broken the record of previous high of 21C in 2016.
  • Sea surface temperatures (SST) of the Indian Ocean particularly the South Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal, are mainly contributing to the global ocean surface temperature.
  • The data from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of United States shows that SST is higher in the tropical region. Indian Ocean temperature reached 29 to 31 degrees C.
  • According to Scientists, the temperature of the Indian Ocean is 1 to 2 degrees C more than normal. The high SSTs can impact the monsoon.
  • SSTs over 30 degrees C are very high and it can also impact the life of marine animals.
  • The impact of high SSTs can be both positive and negative. The warm SSTs will help in the development of low-pressure systems and depression during monsoon which will bring rain to the region.
  • The high surface temperature of the Ocean can reduce the temperature gradient between land and ocean which is essential for the onset of monsoon and rainfall activities.
  • The temperature of the Ocean is increasing due to the rise in global average temperatures or climate change.
  • Rising temperatures and increasing heatwaves will have several negative consequences including the melting of ice and coral bleaching.

Topic: Awards and Prizes

10. Asha Bhosle will be felicitated with Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar award.

  • Legendary singer Asha Bhosle will receive the Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar Award on 24 April.
  • Ghazal singer Pankaj Udhas will also receive the award for his contribution to Indian Music.
  • The Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar Award was instituted in memory of Lata Mangeshkar.
  • It is given every year to a person who has done remarkable work for the nation, people and society.
  • The main aim of the award is to honour people from various fields such as music, drama, art, medicine and social work.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the first recipient of this award in 2022.
  • The other winners of the Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar Award 2023 are given below:

Winners

Field

Gauri Theaters of Prashant Damle Fan Foundation

Best Drama of the Year

Shri Sadguru Seva Sangh Trust

Social Service

Granthali Prakashan

Literature

Prasad Oak

Cinema and Drama

Vidya Balan

Cinema

Topic: Sports

11. Harmanpreet Kaur became Wisden Cricketer of the Year and Suryakumar Yadav named Wisden T20I player.

  • Harmanpreet Kaur created history by becoming the first Indian woman to be included in the “Wisden Cricketers of the Year”, chosen by Wisden editors, in a tradition dating back to 1889.
  • Tom Blundell and Daryl Mitchell from New Zealand, and Ben Foakes and Matthew Potts from England are the other winners.
  • Suryakumar Yadav has been selected as the “Wisden T20I Cricketer of the Year (Male)”.
  • In 2022, Yadav became only the second player to score 1,000 T20I runs in a year.
  • England captain Ben Stokes has been selected as the “Leading Cricketer in the World (Male)”.
  • For the third time, he has been named the 'Leading Cricketer in the World'. He received this honor in 2019 and 2020 as well.
  • Australia batter Beth Mooney has been selected as the “world's top women's cricketer” for the second time in three years.
  • Jonny Bairstow of England has been awarded the “new Wisden Trophy” for outstanding individual Test performance of the year after hitting twin hundreds in a record-breaking win over India in July.
  • Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack is also known as the bible of cricket. It is a cricket reference book published annually in the United Kingdom.

Topic: Defence

12. Defence Ministry initiated reforms in AHSP to further boost 'Ease of Doing Business'.

  • The proposal to bring in industry friendly reforms relating to Authority Holding Sealed Particulars (AHSP) has been approved by the Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
  • AHSP is the authority responsible for generating, maintaining, updating or declaring the entire history and technical information of defense products obsolete.
  • Till now, the AHSP authority for most of the defense items designed, developed and manufactured by various DPSUs and private industries was the Directorate General of Quality Assurance (DGQA).
  • With the changing times, some hurdles were faced by the industry during the current process of improving its products and technologies.
  • Therefore, it has now been decided by the Ministry to liberalize the AHSP procedures and make it industry friendly.
  • Indian defense companies that have developed products, systems, sub-systems, components based on their own indigenous capabilities (excluding critical stores) will now be allowed to own and account for their final designs and specifications as AHSPs.
  • A simplified mechanism representing all relevant stakeholders including the industry will decide in case of any changes to the sealed details.
  • Within two months, DGQA will notify the detailed procedure in this regard.
  • DGQA has also been asked to scrutinize all AHSPs and rationalize the entire list within two months.
  • Further, they have been advised to shift this industry to AHSP at the earliest.
  • This will be another important step of the government to further promote 'ease of doing business'.

Topic: National News

13. Government approved National Quantum Mission with a budget outlay of Rs 6003.65 Crores.

  • On April 19, National Quantum Mission (NQM) has been approved by the Union Cabinet to accelerate scientific & industrial R&D for quantum technologies.
  • National Quantum Mission will be implemented from 2023-24 to 2030-31.
  • The mission aims to nurture and develop scientific and industrial R&D in the area of ​​Quantum Technology (QT) and create a vibrant and creative ecosystem related to it.
  • It will help in Quantum Technology led economic growth and will make India one of the leading countries in the development of Quantum Technologies & Applications (QTA).
  • This mission will help in the development of magnetometers with high sensitivity in atomic systems and Atomic Clocks for precision timing, communications and navigation.
  • Under this mission, Four Thematic Hubs (T-Hubs) will be set up in top academic and National R&D institutes in the fields of Quantum Computing, Quantum Communication, Quantum Sensing & Metrology and Quantum Materials & Devices.
  • The T-Hubs will promote R&D in their respective field and will also focus on the generation of new knowledge through basic and applied research.
  • This mission will also support the development of Single-photon sources/detectors and entangled photon sources for quantum communications, sensing and metrological applications.
  • It will also help in the design and synthesis of quantum materials such as superconductors, novel semiconductor structures and topological materials for the development of quantum devices.
  • This mission aims to develop intermediate-sca quantum computers with 50-1000 physical qubits capablity.
  • National Mission on Quantum Technologies & Applications (NM-QTA) was announced in the 2020 budget.
  • National Quantum Mission will be implemented by the Department of Science & Technology (DST).

Topic: Sports

14. Chennai will host the Men’s Hockey Asian Champions Trophy in 2023.

  • The Men’s Hockey Asian Champions Trophy will take place in Chennai from August 3 to 12.
  • India is hosting the event for the first time. It will be the seventh edition of the tournament.
  • Chennai last hosted an international hockey event in 2007.
  • India, South Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Japan and China will take part in the tournament.
  • Tamil Nadu Sports Minister Udhayanidhi Stalin said that hosting the tournament will revive hockey in the region.
  • Terms related to Hockey: Attack, Bully, Centre pass, Cross, Dribble, Flick, Scoop, Striker, Tackle, Undercutting
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