- 1. Minister of State for Culture released signature tune for "Vande Bharatam".
- 2. Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General MM Naravane awarded President's colours to four battalions of parachute regiment.
- 3. PMAY-G Dashboard launched by Union Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Shri Giriraj Singh on 22 February.
- 4. Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurated “Nikarshan Sadan” – DCI Dredging Museum at DCI campus in Vishakhapatnam.
- 5. ‘Heal in India' initiative has been launched to boost medical facilities and infrastructure.
- 6. NTRI and BAJSS have signed an MoU.
- 7. Indian Navy’s multilateral exercise MILAN 2022 will start from 25th February in Visakhapatnam.
- 8. Scientists from DRDO and IIT Delhi for the first time in the country demonstrate Quantum Key Distribution link between two cities 100 kilometres apart.
- 9. Russia declared war against Ukraine; United States imposed new sanctions against Russia.
- 10. Government released draft of India Data Accessibility & Use Policy 2022.
- 11. Indian Airforce to participate in a multi-nation air exercise ‘Cobra Warrior 22’.
- 12. Sanjeev Sanyal inducted into Economic Advisory Council of Prime Minister.
- 13. Rajasthan government presented budget for financial year 2022-23.
- 14. Central Excise Day: 24 February
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Topic: Art and Culture
1. Minister of State for Culture released signature tune for "Vande Bharatam".
- In an event named "Ekam Bharatam" on the eve of International Mother Language Day, Minister of State for Culture Meenakshi Lekhi released the signature tune for "Vande Bharatam".
- It has been composed by Grammy Award winner Ricky Kej and Oscar contender Bickram Ghosh.
- The ‘Vande Bharatam’ song was produced for Vande Bharatam, Nritya Utsav of Ministry of Culture for the national Republic Day event 2022.
- The Ministry of Defence also presented a special trophy to the Ministry of Culture for its exemplary efforts during the Republic day Event 2022.
Topic: Awards and Prizes
2. Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General MM Naravane awarded President's colours to four battalions of parachute regiment.
- The battalions were awarded President's colours during a Colour Presentation Parade held at the Parachute Regiment Training Centre in Bengaluru on 23 February.
- These battalions include 11 PARA (Special Forces), 21 PARA (Special Forces), 23 PARA and 29 PARA.
- Parachute Regiment is an elite force of the Indian Army. It has been conferred with a large number of awards.
- President’s Colours is the highest honour bestowed on a military unit in recognition of exceptional service. It is popularly called Nishan in Army parlance.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
3. PMAY-G Dashboard launched by Union Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Shri Giriraj Singh on 22 February.
- The dashboard has been launched for stringent monitoring of implementation of Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana – Gramin (PMAY-G).
- The stakeholders of PMAY-G will use the dashboard for monitoring and managerial purposes.
- The Minister said that the dashboard will provide complete transparency in the implementation of the scheme.
- He further said that Block Officer should be given responsibility for providing a link to the dashboard to all elected and non-elected representatives of the block.
- The Dashboard will enable the users to see, at a glance, an overall situation of PMAY-G.
- The Minister asked the officials to make the dashboard public so that it can be made 'Aam Janta Ka Portal'.
- Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana – Gramin (PMAY-G):
- It is a rural housing scheme. It was launched with effect from 1st April 2016 to achieve the aim of providing “Housing to All” by the year 2024.
- It envisages the completion of 2.95 crore PMAY-G houses with all basic amenities by the year 2024.
- As on 21st February 2022, 1.73 crores PMAY-G houses have been completed.
- It is being implemented and monitored through end to end e-governance solutions, AwaasSoft and AwaasApp.
4. Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurated “Nikarshan Sadan” – DCI Dredging Museum at DCI campus in Vishakhapatnam.
- The museum exhibits a variety of dredgers, old photographs and models of the machine laying the foundations of giant marine structures from the eastern port city of Vizag.
- Sarbananda Sonowal also inaugurated skill development facility -Centre of Excellence in Maritime and Shipbuilding (CEMS) at a function in Visakhapatnam.
- CEMS also has a Mumbai campus at the Head Office of Indian Register of Shipping.
- Dredging Corporation of India (DCI) was set up in 1976 to provide dredging services to Major Ports of India. It is headquartered in Visakhapatnam.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
5. ‘Heal in India' initiative has been launched to boost medical facilities and infrastructure.
- The plan of this initiative is to standardize processes and treatment packages for foreign nationals.
- The goal of the initiative is to reframe the "medical tourism" industry.
- This step could also include price checks to ensure that patients who are visiting on a medical visa are not overcharged.
- The government also plans to set up a certified grievance redressal procedure for international patients.
- The government is also planning a parallel campaign named 'Heal by India'.
- It will consider providing manpower from India in the health care sector based on the needs in other countries.
6. NTRI and BAJSS have signed an MoU.
- On February 21, 2022, the National Tribal Research Institute (NTRI) and the Bhartiya Adim Janjati Seva Sangathan (BAJSS) have signed an MoU to develop BAJSS as a resource center for NTRI.
- The MoU has been signed for conservation, protection, and digitization of rare books on tribals of the Tribal Museum.
- The Ministry has approved a total of Rs.150 lakhs for the preservation and digitalization of rare books at the BAJSS Library.
- Bhartiya Adim Janjati Seva Sangathan (BAJSS):
- The Bhartiya Adim Jati Sevak Sangh is committed for promoting the socio-cultural and economic development of both nomadic and non-notified tribes.
- On October 24, 1948, Thakkar Bapa founded this prestigious institution in Delhi.
- Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the first President of independent India, was named as the first President of BAJSS.
- Its current President is Nayan Chand Hembram.
7. Indian Navy’s multilateral exercise MILAN 2022 will start from 25th February in Visakhapatnam.
- The exercise MILAN 2022 will be conducted over a duration of 9 days in two phases.
- The harbor phase is scheduled from 25th to 28th February and the sea phase is scheduled from 1st to 4th March.
- “Camaraderie - Cohesion – Collaboration” is the theme for MILAN 2022 exercise.
- More than 40 countries are expected to participate in this edition of exercise MILAN.
- MILAN 2022 will also host an International Maritime Seminar with the theme - ‘Harnessing Collective Maritime Competence through Collaboration’ on 27-28 February.
- Exercise MILAN:
- It is a biennial multilateral naval exercise. It was started by the Indian Navy in 1995 at Andaman and Nicobar Command.
- Exercise MILAN has been conducted biennially every time except in 2001, 2005, 2016 and 2020.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Science and Technology
8. Scientists from DRDO and IIT Delhi for the first time in the country demonstrate Quantum Key Distribution link between two cities 100 kilometres apart.
- The Quantum Key Distribution link has been demonstrated over a distance of over 100 km between Prayagraj and Vindhyachal in Uttar Pradesh.
- This technological breakthrough was achieved on commercial grade optical fiber already available in that region.
- The country has demonstrated indigenous technology of secure key transfer for bootstrapping military grade communication security key hierarchy.
- This technology will enable security agencies to plan a suitable quantum communication network with indigenous technology base.
- Quantum Key Distribution is also known as Quantum Cryptography. It is a secure communication method which enables two parties to produce a shared random secret key known only to them.
Topic: International News
9. Russia declared war against Ukraine; United States imposed new sanctions against Russia.
- U.S. President Joe Biden announced the first tranche of stringent sanctions against Russia.
- The sanctions have been imposed after Russia recognized the independence of two separatist regions in eastern Ukraine- Donetsk and Luhansk.
- The first tranche of stringent sanctions includes freezing of assets of two large state-owned Russian financial institutions in the United States and prohibiting U.S. individuals and businesses from doing any transactions with them.
- The United States also implemented comprehensive sanctions on Russian sovereign debt. It will block Russia’s access to key US markets and investors.
- The United States has also imposed sanctions on five members of Russian elites and their family members.
- Canada, Australia, and European Union have also imposed economic sanctions against Russia.
- Russia has declared war against Ukraine and accused US and its allies of ignoring its demand of stopping Ukraine from joining NATO.
- US administration has condemned Russia's attack on Ukraine and said that United States will announce additional steps against this action.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
10. Government released draft of India Data Accessibility & Use Policy 2022.
- The government has invited feedback on the draft of the ‘India Data Accessibility & Use Policy 2022’.
- It has been prepared with the help of various stakeholders including academia, industry, and governments.
- Under the draft of this new policy, researchers, startups, enterprises, and individuals will be able to use government data.
- As per this draft, the data collected by various ministries, departments, and agencies of government can be sold in the open market.
- The government will also create a new department named ‘India Data Office’ under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY).
- According to this draft, each ministry will have its own Data Management Unit, which will be headed by a Chief Data Officer (CDO).
- The draft also proposed a data-sharing toolkit. It will be used by central or state government ministries and departments for sharing the data.
- All Ministries and departments of the government will have to “identify, publish and maintain” their high-value dataset (HVD).
11. Indian Airforce to participate in a multi-nation air exercise ‘Cobra Warrior 22’.
- Indian Air Force along with fighter aircraft of UK and other leading Air Forces will participate in a multi-nation air exercise named 'Ex Cobra Warrior 22'.
- It will be organized from 6-27 March 2022 at Waddington in the United Kingdom.
- Five Tejas aircraft will participate in this exercise. IAF C-17 aircraft will provide the necessary transport support for induction and de-induction.
- ‘Gripen’ fighter aircraft from Sweden, F-16 fighter aircraft from Belgium, and Typhoons and Tornado fighter aircraft of Saudi Arabia will also participate in this exercise.
- Tejas aircraft will show its manoeuvrability and operational capability. The exercise will give an opportunity to share best practices amongst participants.
- Ex-Cobra is one of the largest annual exercises of the Royal Air Force.
12. Sanjeev Sanyal inducted into Economic Advisory Council of Prime Minister.
- Sanjeev Sanyal has been appointed as a full-time member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (EAC-PM).
- Before this, he was the Principal Economic Adviser to the Finance Minister.
- Sanjeev Sanyal was appointed as Principal Economic Adviser of the Finance Minister in 2017.
- He also served as the co-chair of the Framework Working Group of the G20.
- He has been appointed for two years. He has been working with the financial markets since the 1990s.
- Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (EAC-PM):
- It is an independent body constituted to advise on economic and related issues to the Prime Minister.
- Dr. Bibek Debroy is the current chairman of EAC-PM. He was a former member of NITI Aayog.
- The Chairman had the rank equivalent to a Cabinet Minister of India.
Topic: State News/ Rajasthan
13. Rajasthan government presented budget for financial year 2022-23.
- Chief Minister of Rajasthan Ashok Gehlot has presented the budget of Rajasthan for the Financial Year 2022-23.
- A separate agriculture budget has been presented by the government in the assembly.
- Chief Minister of Rajasthan announced the formation of the Rajasthan Industrial Security Force.
- Under Indira Gandhi Shahri Rozgar Guarantee Yojna, 100 days of employment will be given in urban areas.
- Rajasthan government will increase the employment days from 100 to 125 under MGNREGA.
- Electricity up to 50 units per month will be provided for free.
- The government has increased health cover from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 10 lakh per family in a year.
- The government has allocated Rs 5,000 crore for CM Krishak Saathi Yojna.
- The government has allocated Rs 2,700 crore for the Rajasthan Micro Irrigation Mission. It will benefit more than 5 lakh farmers.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Important Days
14. Central Excise Day: 24 February
- Every year, 24 February is observed as Central Excise Day across India.
- The main aim of this day is to honour the efforts, services, and contributions of the 'Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs'.
- Central Excise Day is observed to mark the enactment of the ‘Central Excise and Salt Act’ on 24 February 1944.
- It encourages the employees of the excise department to perform their duties.
- Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC):
- It was established on 1 January 1964.
- It is a part of the Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance.
- It formulates and implements policies for Central GST, Central Excise Duty, and Custom/Import Duty.
- Vivek Johri is the chairman of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs.