- 1. Gallantry Medal presented to Wing Commander Deepika Misra.
- 2. Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh has laid the foundation for the Mulapeta port project.
- 3. Arun Sinha has been appointed as chairman of National Technical Research Organisation.
- 4. PM Gati Shakti national master plan initiative received the award for excellence in public administration.
- 5. The appointment of Kaizad Bharucha as Deputy Managing Director of HDFC Bank has been approved by RBI.
- 6. City Union Bank has launched India’s first voice biometric authentication for logging into its mobile banking app.
- 7. Election Commission has for the first time introduced Vote from Home option in Karnataka Assembly.
- 8. Angela Merkel has received Germany’s highest order of Merit.
- 9. CM Gehlot to introduce a bill for gig workers with welfare measures.
- 10. On 24 April, Asia-Pacific Leaders' Conference on Malaria Elimination held in New Delhi.
- 11. The journey of Bharat Gaurav tourist train will start from Pune from 28 April.
- 12. National Panchayati Raj Day 2023: 24 April
- 13. India has achieved 38th rank on World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index (LPI) 2023.
- 14. UAE is the 2nd most important export destination for India during the financial year 2022-23.
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Topic: Awards and Prizes
1. Gallantry Medal presented to Wing Commander Deepika Misra.
- On 20 April, Wing Commander Deepika Mishra made history by becoming the first female officer in the Indian Air Force to be honored with a gallantry award.
- In 2022, Deepika was among the awardees announced for the Vayu Seva Medal for Gallantry on Independence Day.
- On April 20, 2023, the medal has been conferred on Deepika by Indian Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari at an investiture ceremony held in New Delhi.
- In August 2021, Deepika Mishra was deployed to conduct humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations in response to flash floods in northern Madhya Pradesh.
- She was the first and only responder to reach the affected area and saved the lives of 47 people.
- IAF chief presented the award to two IAF officers were awarded Yudh Seva Medal, 13 officers, and air warriors received Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry), 13 officers Vayu Sena Medal and 30 Vishisht Seva Medal.
- The IAF chief awarded a total of 58 personnel with gallantry awards, of which 57 are from the IAF and the remainder from the Indian army.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: State News/ Andhra Pradesh
2. Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh has laid the foundation for the Mulapeta port project.
- In Srikakulam district of Andhra Pradesh, Chief Minister Jaganmohan Reddy has laid the foundation stone of the Mulapeta greenfield Port, with an estimated cost of Rs 4362 crore.
- It is expected to be completed within two years and is expected to provide direct and indirect employment to 25,000.
- The port will play a key role in handling exports, imports from states like Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha.
- Mulapeta Port is being built over an area of 1250 acres with an annual handling capacity of 23.5 million tonnes.
- The port will have four loading and unloading berths to handle export and import of coal, multi-purpose containers and general cargo.
- Apart from the port, the chief minister also laid the foundation stone of a fishing port at Budagatlapalem at a cost of Rs 360 crore.
- He also laid the foundation stone of the Rs 176-crore Vamsadhara lift irrigation project that will take water from Gota barrage to Hiramandalam reservoir.
Topic: National Appointments
3. Arun Sinha has been appointed as chairman of National Technical Research Organisation.
- The Government has appointed Arun Sinha as Chairman of the National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO).
- Arun Sinha has served as an advisor of NTRO for two years.
- Arun Sinha is a 1984 batch Kerala cadre IPS officer. This post was vacant from three to four months.
- National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO):
- It was established in 2004.
- It is a technical intelligence agency under the National Security Advisor.
- It is an agency for providing technical intelligence to other agencies on internal and external security.
- It was originally known as the National Technical Facilities Organisation (NTFO).
Topic: Awards and Prizes
4. PM Gati Shakti national master plan initiative received the award for excellence in public administration.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi presented the award for excellence in public administration to PM Gati Shakti national master plan initiative.
- This award is conferred for excellence in public administration for the effective implementation of priority programmes.
- This award was instituted to recognise the extraordinary and innovative work done by districts and organisations of the central and state governments for people's welfare.
- This initiative of Ministry of Commerce and Industry has received the award in innovation category.
- A GIS enabled national master plan digital platform has also been developed.
- Data related to land records, ports, forest, schools, railway stations, water bodies, telecom towers, and highways are available on the portal of this initiative.
- PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan:
- It was launched in October 2021.
- It was launched for the integrated and planned development of critical infrastructure projects to reduce logistics costs.
- It will help in developing infrastructure in different fields including transport and productivity.
- It will also lead to the development of many future economic zones.
Topic: National Appointments
5. The appointment of Kaizad Bharucha as Deputy Managing Director of HDFC Bank has been approved by RBI.
- RBI has also approved the appointment of Bhavesh Zaveri as Executive Director of HDFC Bank.
- RBI has approved these appointments for three years with effect from April 19, 2023.
- Kaizad Bharucha was earlier the Executive Director of the bank.
- Zaveri was Group Head – Operations, Cash Management & ATM Products with the bank.
- HDFC Bank:
- HDFC Bank is India's largest private sector bank. It is India’s second largest lender after the State Bank of India.
- It is headquartered in Mumbai. It was founded in 1994. The CEO of HDFC Bank is Sashidhar Jagdishan.
Topic: Banking System
6. City Union Bank has launched India’s first voice biometric authentication for logging into its mobile banking app.
- Kaizen Secure Voiz Pvt Ltd has developed the voice biometric service.
- The voice biometric service has been developed under the guidance of the 5G use case lab of the Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology (IDRBT).
- Kaizen Secure Voiz Pvt Ltd is a Chennai-based deeptech start-up.
- City Union Bank has earlier launched the first robot (Lakshmi) in the banking industry.
- It has also launched India’s first wearable debit card in the form of a wristwatch and key chains.
- N Kamakodi, MD & CEO of City Union Bank, said that the voice biometric service will initially be limited to login. It will not be available for the authentication of transactions.
- City Union Bank is a private sector bank. It is headquartered in Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu.
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Topic: Indian Polity
7. Election Commission has for the first time introduced Vote from Home option in Karnataka Assembly.
- It is a first of its kind initiative by the Election Commission for those who cannot visit polling booth either due to old age or disability.
- This initiative will encourage electoral participation in urban areas.
- In Bengaluru, this option has been chosen by around 8900 persons who are above 80 years old or people with disability.
- Other initiatives by Election Commission:
- Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP): It is a flagship program of ECI for voter education, spreading voter awareness and promoting voter literacy in India. It aims to increase voter turnout to 75% in Lok Sabha elections 2024.
- cVIGIL App: It stands for Citizen Vigilance. It is a mobile app designed by ECI to report election code violations directly by citizens. MCC violation portal is the extended portal of cVIGIL.
- Booth App: It facilitates faster identification of voters using quick search of the electors based on serial number/EPIC number/name.
- Persons with disabilities (PwD) App: It was launched with focus to ensure wider participation of Persons with disabilities.
Topic: Awards and Prizes
8. Angela Merkel has received Germany’s highest order of Merit.
- Former German chancellor Angela Merkel received the highest order of Merit of Germany.
- She has been honored with this award for her achievements in office, despite growing criticism of her decisions on Russia and her energy policy.
- President Frank-Walter Steinmeier handed over her the Grand Cross award.
- Former chancellors Konrad Adenauer and Hemlut Kohl have received this award twice.
- Angela Merkel led Germany from 2005 to 2021. She served for four terms.
- She was the first woman to take the post of chancellor.
- Germany’s Order of Merit is the only federal decoration of Germany. It is given for special achievements in political, economic, cultural, intellectual or honorary fields.
- It was created by first President of Germany Theodor Heuss in 1951.
Topic: State News/ Rajasthan
9. CM Gehlot to introduce a bill for gig workers with welfare measures.
- The Rajasthan government is working to implement the Rajasthan Platform-based Gig Workers (Registration and Welfare) Bill, 2023.
- The bill has stringent provisions against errant aggregators, including barring them from operating in the state.
- In February 2023, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had announced his government's intention to introduce the bill in his budget speech.
- The draft bill envisages a Rajasthan platform-based Gig Workers Welfare Board, which will act as a mothership for over three lakh people employed with various online service providers in the state.
- It will design welfare policies and hear grievances of workers hired on piece rate basis.
- Irrespective of the duration of their engagement with the platform, all platform-based gig workers registered with any platform will automatically be registered with the Board.
- As per the state's bill, the board shall generate a unique ID for each platform-based gig worker registered with one or more aggregators in the state.
- The validity of this unique ID will be for a period of three years.
- A seed fund of Rs 200 crore has been announced by Mr Gehlot for the board to start its work.
- The Bill empowers the Board to decide how much cess each aggregator has to pay towards this social welfare fund.
- This cess will be a percent of every transaction that takes place on the platform.
- Any platform that violates the regulations stipulated in the Bill, such as not sharing transaction data or worker information, can be fined up to ₹10 lakh for the first contravention and up to ₹1 crore for subsequent ones.
- They may also face suspension of operations in the State.
10. On 24 April, Asia-Pacific Leaders' Conference on Malaria Elimination held in New Delhi.
- Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, as the precursor of World Malaria Day, has organized Asia Pacific Leaders' Conference for Malaria Elimination in partnership with the Asia Pacific Leaders' Malaria Alliance (APLMA) in New Delhi.
- The conference was presided over by Dr. VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog.
- The purpose of the conference is to reaffirm political commitment to encourage action to eliminate malaria by 2030.
- The conference provided a forum for leaders from the Asia Pacific region to discuss ongoing efforts towards malaria elimination and to reinvigorate national and regional progress towards the goal of a malaria-free Asia Pacific region by 2030.
- The conference included tracking regional and national progress, leveraging research, innovation and new technologies to accelerate progress in reaching at-risk populations, and adopting the government's holistic approach to ending the disease.
- Of the 11 countries that are part of the World Health Organisation's 'High Burden to High Impact' initiative, only India has reported a decline in malaria cases during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- From 2015 to 2022, malaria cases have declined by 85.1 percent and deaths by 83.6 percent.
Topic: National News
11. The journey of Bharat Gaurav tourist train will start from Pune from 28 April.
- Ministry of Railways will start Puri-Gangasagar Divya Kashi Yatra from Pune under “Dekho Apna Desh” and “Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat” Scheme.
- The ten-day tour will cover important religious places like Puri, Kolkata, Gaya, Varanasi and Prayagraj.
- Passengers will get an opportunity to visit Lord Jagannath Temple, Konark Sun Temple, Lingaraj Temple, Kalibari, Vishnupad Temple and Kashi Vishwanath Temple during this period.
- Ministry of Railways is running Bharat Gaurav tourism train from different parts of the country to show important places to domestic and foreign tourists.
- Consisting of 7 Sleeper Class Coaches, 3 AC-3 Tier and 1st AC- 2 Tier Coaches, Indian Railways is offering 3 classes of Economy, Comfort and Deluxe tour packages and mainly booked for 750 passengers in economy segment class is offering.
- IRCTC is offering this all-inclusive journey which includes comfortable rail travel in special LHB rake of Bharat Gaurav train, on-board and off-board meals, road transport, sightseeing and accommodation, etc.
Topic: Important Days
12. National Panchayati Raj Day 2023: 24 April
- Every year on 24 April, National Panchayati Raj Day (NPRD) is celebrated.
- It commemorates the day on which the 73rd Constitutional Amendment was passed in 1992.
- National Panchayati Raj Day was first declared in 2010.
- This day provides an opportunity for direct dialogue with Panchayat representatives from all over the country.
- National Panchayati Raj Day (NPRD) is celebrated in Rewa on 24th April 2023 in collaboration with Ministry of Panchayati Raj and Government of Madhya Pradesh.
- NPRD has been celebrated as a major event as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav (AKAM) – Samaaveshi Vikaas (Inclusive Development) adopting Whole-of-the-Government approach.
- The Prime Minister was the chief guest at the national function organized at the Special Armed Forces Ground in Rewa, Madhya Pradesh.
- An integrated e-GramSwaraj and GeM portal were inaugurated by PM for public procurement at Panchayat level.
- The aim of eGramSwaraj and GeM integration is to enable Panchayats to procure their goods and services through GeM by leveraging the eGramSwaraj platform.
- On this occasion, the Prime Minister handed over SVAMITVA Property Cards to the selected beneficiaries.
- This marks the achievement of 1.25 crore property card distribution under the SVAMITVA scheme in the country.
- PM Modi launched Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav (AKAM) Campaign for theme “Inclusive Development” – “SAMAAVESHI VIKAS” and also launched its dedicated website and Mobile App.
- PM Modi conducted the ‘Griha Pravesh’ of more than 4 lakh beneficiaries under Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana–Gramin (PMAY–G).
- Presently, 4.11 lakh houses are ready for the Griha Pravesh programme.
- On 24th April 2020, eGramSwaraj (eGS) was launched on the occasion of National Panchayati Raj Day.
- On April 24, 2020, on the occasion of the National Panchayati Raj Day, SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) is a Central Sector Scheme launched by the Prime Minister.
Topic: Reports and Indices/Ranking
13. India has achieved 38th rank on World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index (LPI) 2023.
- India’s rank has improved by 16 places from 54th in 2014 to 38th.
- India was ranked 44th on LPI in 2018. So, India’s rank has improved by 6 places on World Bank's Logistic Performance Index (LPI) 2023.
- In the infrastructure sector, India’s rank improved from 52nd in 2018 to 47th in 2023.
- In international shipments, India’s rank moved up to 22nd place in 2023 from 44th in 2018.
- India improved by four places to 48th in logistics competence and equality.
- India’s ranking improved by 17 places in timelines and by three places in tracking and tracing.
- As per the report, the average dwell time for containers during May and October 2022 was three days for India and Singapore.
- The average dwelling time was much better than in some of the industrialised countries.
- The dwell time for US and Germany was seven days and ten days, respectively.
- As per the report, dwell time in eastern port of Visakhapatnam declined from 32.4 days in 2015 to 5.3 days in 2019.
- The most efficient and highest ranked LPI countries as per the 2023 LPI are Singapore and Finland.
- Logistics Performance Index (LPI) covers 139 countries. It measures the ease of establishing reliable supply chain connections. It covers six key dimensions as given below:
Ease of arranging shipments
Logistics services quality
Consignments tracking and tracing
Timeliness of shipments
Topic: Indian Economy
14. UAE is the 2nd most important export destination for India during the financial year 2022-23.
- UAE is the 2nd most important export destination for India as per annual trade figures released by the Ministry of Commerce, Government of India.
- The US and the UAE continued to occupy the first and second places respectively in this category as per the Ministry’s figures.
- India’s overall exports of merchandise and services increased by 6% during the financial year 2022-23.
- The Netherlands became the third most important export destination for India during the financial year 2022-23. It replaced China.
- UAE was in second place after the US among India’s export destinations in March 2023.
- UAE was in 3rd place during March 2023 after China and Russia on India’s import graph.
- Only Saudi Arabia was among India’s top export destinations and sources of imports among the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states.