Daily Current Affairs and GK | 26 and 27 February 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 27 Feb 2023 17:25 PM IST

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Topic: Indian Economy

1. IMF has laid out a nine-point crypto assets action plan.

  • The International Monetary Fund laid out a nine-point action plan for crypto assets.
  • The action plan gives direction that how countries should handle crypto assets and urges to not give legal tender to cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin.
  • The main recommendation of the action plan is to safeguard monetary sovereignty and stability by strengthening monetary policy frameworks.
  • Central American country El Salvador is the first country to adopt bitcoin as legal tender in 2021.
  • IMF said that Countries should also establish international arrangements to increase supervision and enforce regulations.
  • Crypto is a digital currency designed to work as a medium of exchange through a computer network. It is an alternative form of payment created by using encryption algorithms.
  • The government of India had announced a flat 30% tax on gains from cryptocurrency in the budget 2022.
  • Cryptocurrencies in India is not regulated by any central authority.
  • In the G20 FMCBG meeting, Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors accepted Crypto Assets are major risks to financial stability.
  • FMCBG meeting delegates took interest in the central bank digital currency (CBDC) pilot projects.

Topic: Space and IT

2. UAE will send its second astronaut, Sultan Al Neyadi, to space.

  • Sultan Al Neyadi - Mission Specialist, Primary Crew, Crew-6 will go on historic space mission scheduled on February 27th, from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, USA.
  • Once he reaches onboard the International Space Station, he will conduct different science experiments over the next six months.
  • Fields of scientific experiments include cardiovascular system, epigenetics, immune system, fluid science, plant biology, sleep analysis and radiation.
  • NASA commander Stephen Bowen, pilot William Hoburg, and Russian cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev are other members of the SpaceX Crew-6.
  • With this mission, UAE will be only the 11th country to send an astronaut on a long-term mission to space.
  • Dr Al Neyadi will spend six months aboard the ISS. This will be the Arab world's longest-duration space mission.
  • Sultan Al Neyadi is one of the two UAE astronauts along with Hazza Al Mansouri. Hazza Al Mansouri is the first person from the United Arab Emirates to go into space.

Topic: Sports

3. Ankit Gulia won the Bronze medal in the Ibrahim Moustafa ranking series in Alexandria, Egypt.

  • Ankit Gulia is Indian Greco-Roman wrestler. Ankit Gulia lost 9-0 to Georgian Otar Abuladze.
  • However, Ankit Gulia performed better than Nurzhigit Keneshbek Uulu of Kyrgyzstan in the repechage round.
  • Ankit Gulia won the medal after Iranian 67kg Olympic champion Mohammadreza Abdolhamid Geraei withdrew from the bronze medal match.
  • The Ibrahim Moustafa 2023 wrestling tournament was held in Alexandria, Egypt from February 23 to 26.
  • The Ibrahim Moustafa 2023 was this year’s second-ranking series after the Zagreb Open.
  • Zagreb Open was a wrestling event. It was held in Zagreb, Croatia between 1 and 5 February 2023.

Half Yearly Current Affairs 2022 - 2023

Topic: Art and Culture

4. 14th Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav was formally inaugurated by President Droupadi Murmu on 27 February 2023.

  • The 14th edition of Sanskriti Mahotsav is being held in Bikaner, Rajasthan.
  • The Sanskriti Mahotsav is being organized at Dr. Karni Singh Stadium.
  • It is a 9-days long festival. It is being organized for the first time in Rajasthan.
  • The festival started on 25 February 2023. It will continue till 5 March 2023.
  • In the festival, about one thousand well-known artists from across the country will perform.
  • Sand sculpture, an exhibition based on crafts and other arts is also being organized as part of the festival.
  • The festival is aimed at preserving, promoting and popularizing the rich cultural heritage of the country.

Topic: Sports

5. Australia won the ICC Women's Twenty20 World Cup 2023 title.

  • On 26 February, Australia defeated South Africa by 19 runs in the final match played in Cape Town.
  • Chasing a target of 157 runs for the win, the South African team could manage only 137 runs at the loss of six wickets in the stipulated 20 overs.
  • Australia has lifted the ICC Women's Twenty20 World Cup trophy for the sixth time.
  • Australia's previous victories came in 2010, 2012, 2014, 2018 and 2020.
  • Beth Mooney has won the Player of the Match. Ashleigh Gardner has won the Player of the Tournament.
  • International Cricket Council organises the event, with the first edition held in England in 2009.
  • Bangladesh would host the 2024 tournament and England would host the 2026 tournament.

ICC Women's Twenty20 World Cup 2023

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Defence

6. Indian Air Force will take part in Cobra Warrior air exercise at Waddington, UK.

  • On 26 February, an Indian Air Force contingent consisting of 145 airmen departed from Jamnagar Air Force Station to participate in Exercise Cobra Warrior at Royal Air Force's Waddington Air Force Base in the UK.
  • This exercise is scheduled to be held from 06 March 2023 to 24 March 2023.
  • Exercise Cobra Warrior is a multilateral air military exercise in which the air forces of Finland, Sweden, South Africa, the United States and Singapore are also participating along with the Royal Air Force and the Indian Air Force.
  • Five Mirage 2000 fighter aircraft, two C-17 Globemaster and one IL-78 mid-air refueler aircraft of the Indian Air Force, will participate in the exercise.
  • The objective of this Cobra Warrior exercise is to engage in diverse activities of different fighter aircraft and learn from the best practices of different air forces.
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Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

7. Chintan Shivir on “Drugs: Quality Regulation and Enforcement” was inaugurated by health minister Mansukh Mandaviya.

  • The Chintan Shivir started on 26 February 2023 at Kanha Shanti Vanam, 40 kilometres from Hyderabad.
  • Its objective is to review processes and implementation of policies and programmes related to drug quality and enforcement in the country.
  • During the meeting, ways and means for facilitating ease of doing business will also be recommended by reviewing transparency and compliance with Indian drug standards and regulatory capacities across states and centre.
  • Participants will also discuss global best practices. Participants will also discuss the introduction of newer interventions like digital tools and clinical trial standards.
  • Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur along with the president of Shree Ramchandra Mission Heartfulness Daaji inaugurated International Sports Centre at the Kanha Shanti vanam, Hyderabad.

Drugs: Quality Regulation and Enforcement

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Important Days

8. World NGO Day: 27 February

  • World NGO Day is celebrated annually on 27 February to recognize and honour all non-governmental and non-profit organizations.
  • It was first proposed in 2010 by the Baltic Sea NGO Forum. It highlights the work of NGOs around the world.
  • In 2014, the UN, EU leaders, and international organizations adopted 27th February as World NGO day.
  • It is celebrated in over 89 countries and in more than six continents.
  • The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland hosted the global inaugural event of World NGO Day on 27 February 2014 in Helsinki, Finland.

Topic: Science and Technology

9. Meta Platform to introduce 'LLaMA’ for artificial intelligence.

  • Meta Platforms Inc. introduced its Large Language Model Meta AI (LLaMA) for artificial intelligence.
  • This language model will help in generating text, having conversations, summarizing written material and performing complicated tasks.
  • It will also help in solving math theorems or predicting protein structures.
  • LLaMA is a research tool which will solve issues related to AI language models.
  • LLaMA is a collection of language models that range from 7B to 65B parameters.
  • According to META, LLaMA-13B outperformed OpenAI’s GPT-3 (175B) on most benchmarks.
  • Currently, LLaMA is not used on any of Meta’s products. It will be also available for AI researchers.
  • Earlier, META launched its LLM OPT-175B but LLaMA is more advanced system.
  • META announced that LLaMA will be available in different sizes like 7B, 13B, 33B, and 65B parameters.

Topic: State News/ Bihar

10. Bihar government approved $50,000 for developing fog alert system with US-NCAR.

  • The Bihar Cabinet approved USD 50,000 (about Rs 41.41 lakh) for technical support that will be carried out by the state government and US-NCAR.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will be also signed between the Bihar government and NCAR.
  • The proposal for this project was given by the Planning and Development Department.
  • Early warning systems aim to reduce the damages caused by extreme weather conditions. It is the main element of climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction.
  • The Bihar Mausam Seva Kendra (BMSK) is developing an app under which early warning for dense fog and cold wave conditions will be provided to citizens.
  • The Bihar government also approved the guidelines for providing government jobs to medal-winning sportspersons.
  • Sportspersons bringing medal in national and international sports event would get grade 'one' jobs in Bihar Administrative Service and Bihar Police Service.
  • The US National Center for Atmospheric Research is funded by the National Science Foundation and managed by the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR).

Topic: State News/ Kerala

11. Kerala has become the first state to have robotic scavengers for manhole cleaning.

  • “Bandicoot” is the robotic scavenger that has been launched by Kerala government to clean sewages in the temple town of Guruvayur.
  • Kerala has become the first state in India to use robotic technology to clean all its commissioned manholes.
  • Under the Guruvayur sewerage project, Bandicoot was launched in Thrissur district.
  • The robotic Tron unit, a key component of the Bandicoot, enters the manhole and removes sewage with help of robotic arms, much like man's limbs.
  • It is laced with waterproof HD vision cameras and gas sensors that can detect harmful gases inside manholes.
  • Kerala-based Genrobotics has developed the Bandicoot, the "world's first robotic scavenger", to eliminate manual scavenging providing relief for workers engaged in manhole cleaning.
  • Recently, the company had bagged 'Kerala Pride' award at the Huddle Global 2022 conclave organised by Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM).

Topic: Indian Economy

12. Nifty India Municipal Bond Index launched by NSE Indices.

  • On 24 February, a branch of NSE, NSE Indices Ltd. said that it has introduced the country's first municipal bond index.
  • The performance of municipal bonds issued by Indian municipal corporations across maturities and investment grade credit ratings will be tracked by the new Nifty India Municipal Bond Index.
  • The index has been launched at the Securities and Exchange Board of India's (SEBI) workshop on Municipal Debt Securities in Bengaluru.
  • Currently, the index consists of 28 municipal bonds issued by 10 issuers with a credit rating in the AA category.
  • The index constituents are assigned weight in accordance with their outstanding amount.
  • The index is calculated using the total return method, including price return and coupon return.
  • The base date of the index is January 1, 2021, and the base value is 1,000. The index will be reviewed quarterly.

Topic: Reports and Indices/ Rankings

13. India is ranked at 42nd on the 2023 International IP Index.

  • 2023 International IP Index shows that twenty-eight economies’ scores remained unchanged.
  • India has generous R&D and IP-based tax incentives and strong awareness-raising efforts regarding the negative impact of piracy and counterfeiting.
  • India is a global leader in targeted administrative incentives for the creation as well as use of IP assets for Small and Medium Enterprises.
  • However, dissolution of the Intellectual Property Appellate Board in 2021 and under-resourced judiciary raises serious concerns about rights holders' ability to resolve IP-related disputes and enforce their IP rights in India.
  • There is a limited framework for the protection of biopharmaceutical Intellectual Property (IP) rights in India.
  • In the index 2023, United States is ranked first, followed by the UK and France.
  • US Chamber of Commerce Global Innovation Policy Center publishes the annual International IP Index report.
  • International IP Index:
    • It is released annually by the US Chambers of Commerce.
    • 2023 International IP Index is the eleventh edition of International IP Index.
    • International IP Index benchmarks IP framework in 55 global economies across 50 indicators. 
    • The indicators include patent and copyright policies to commercialize IP assets, and ratification of international treaties.

Topic: National Appointments

14. Lt Gen R S Reen becomes Director General Quality Assurance on 24 February 2023.

  • R S Reen is an alumunus of the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun and is a 1986 batch officer.
  • He was senior faculty as the Defence Institute of Quality Assurance, Bengaluru.
  • He also headed the DQA(L) as Additional Director General (Electronics) at HQ DGQA, New Delhi.

Director General Quality Assurance

(Source: PIB)

  • Director General Quality Assurance (DGQA):
    • It is an inter-service organisation that functions under the Department of Defence Production Ministry of Defence.
    • It is responsible for second-party Quality Assurance of all defence stores and equipment, both imported and indigenous, for Army and Navy and common user items for Air Force procured from either private sector or PSUs.
    • It is responsible for import substitution and associates with Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in the development projects.
    • It also ensures Documentation, Codification and Standardisation Action for minimizing the variety of components / equipments.
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