Daily Current Affairs and GK | 27 June 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 28 Jun 2023 15:28 PM IST

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Topic: National News

1. In the last 10 years, 1.6 mn Indians renounced citizenship and 70k gave up passports.

  • Between 2011 and 2022, around 70,000 Indian citizens have surrendered their passports.
  • More than 90 per cent of these surrendered passports were from just eight states. These states are: Goa, Punjab, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, and Chandigarh.
  • The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) informed that more than 40 per cent of the total surrendered passports (69,303) were from Goa. Goa is the top state in surrendering passports.
  • Punjab is in the second spot on the list of the most passports surrendered.
  • Only 239 passports were surrendered in 2011 but the number increased to 11,492 in 2012 and 23,511 in 2013.
  • More than 1.6 million Indians renounced their citizenship between 2011 and 2022.
  • As per the Indian Citizenship Act, 1955, Persons of Indian Origin are not allowed to have dual citizenship.
  • If an individual holding an Indian passport acquires a passport from another country, he/ she must surrender their Indian passport.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

2. Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare and Pixxel Space India Pvt. Limited signed an MoU on 26 June 2013.

  • Shri C. S. Murthy, Director, Mahalanobis National Crop Forecast Centre (MNCFC) signed the MoU on behalf of the Government of India.
  • The MoU aims at developing geospatial solutions on a pro bono basis for the Indian Agriculture Ecosystem with the use of Pixxel’s hyperspectral dataset. 
  • The focus of the project is on leveraging sample hyperspectral data from Pixxel’s path finder satellites to develop analytics models.
  • The models will be focused on crop mapping, crop stage discrimination, crop health monitoring, and soil organic carbon assessments.
  • MNCFC on behalf of the Department of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare (DA&FW) will associate with the Pixel team.
  • Spectral measurements in narrow wavelength bands by satellites are part of hyperspectral remote sensing technology.
  • These measurements provide unique indices to monitor and assess the health of crops and soils.
  • This is an emerging technology. Crop health monitoring can be done by detecting the changes in chlorophyll content and canopy moisture status, using hyperspectral data.
  • This will be beneficial to find crop risk management solutions for farmers.
  • An important application of hyperspectral technology is soil nutrient mapping including soil organic carbon assessments.

Topic: Indian Economy

3. Centre approved Rs 56,415 crore to 16 states under 'Special Assistance to States for Capital Investment 2023-24' scheme.

  • Centre has approved Rs 56,415 crore for capital investment. The scheme was announced in the Budget for 2023-24.
  • These states include Arunachal Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, Odisha, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and West Bengal.
  • State governments are being provided special assistance in the form of 50-year interest free loan up to an overall limit of Rs 1.3 lakh crore during the financial year 2023-24.
  • The scheme has eight parts. Part-I is the largest with grant-like special capex facility.
  • In part-I of the scheme, states are being allocated the funds in proportion to their share of central taxes as per the award of the 15th Finance Commission.
  • Other parts of the scheme are either linked to reforms or are for sector-specific projects.

Special Assistance to States

State

Amount (in crore rupees)

Bihar

9640

MP

7850

West Bengal

7523

Rajasthan

6026

Odisha

4528

Haryana

1093

Himachal Pradesh

826

Mizoram

399

Sikkim

388

Goa

386

Source: Ministry of Finance

 

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

4. The Ministry of Power has established UTPRERAK.

  • It is a Centre of Excellence to accelerate the adoption of energy- efficient technologies in the Indian industry.
  • UTPRERAK is the short for Unnat Takniki Pradarshan Kendra.
  • It is an effort to play a catalytic role in improving the energy efficiency of Indian industry.
  • It is also named as Advanced Industrial Technology Demonstration Centre (AITDC).
  • It has been established by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), Ministry of Power.
  • It has been set up at the Badarpur, New Delhi campus of the National Power Training Institute (NPTI), Ministry of Power.
  • The centre was inaugurated by the Union Minister of State for Power, Shri Krishan Pal at NPTI Badarpur, New Delhi on June 26, 2023.
  • UTPRERAK is expected to train more than 10,000 energy professionals over the next five years.
  • It will also be a Regional Hub for conducting Research and Development activities for clean energy technologies in identified sectors.

Unnat Takniki Pradarshan Kendra

(Source: PIB)

Topic: State News/ Uttar Pradesh

5. LADCS launched by UP governments to provide free legal aid to needy.

  • On June 22, Legal Aid Defense Counsel System (LADCS) launched by Uttar Pradesh government for a period of two years under the Uttar Pradesh State Legal Services Authority to provide free legal aid to the needy.
  • This will help in solving minor disputes.
  • The legal aid will be provided to the general public by the Chief, Deputy and Assistant Advocates through the LADCS system.
  • As per the state government, the LADCS will provide legal services to eligible persons in criminal cases.
  • This will benefit the members of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
  • Moreover, the people who have been affected by the illegal acts of the individuals will get direct benefits.
  • LADCS will also benefit women, minor children, persons affected by disabilities like blindness, leprosy, deafness and mental weakness.
  • This will also be helpful for industrial workers and people in police custody.
  • Under this, The beneficiaries will also get benefits with an annual income of less than ₹3,00,000.
  • It include the individuals affected by calamities, caste violence, class-based discrimination, floods, droughts, earthquakes or industrial disasters and mentally ill individuals.
  • The primarily objective of LADCS is to provide legal assistance, specifically in criminal cases, in districts or headquarters. It includes representation, trial and appeals in all sessions, special, magistrate and executive courts.

Topic: International News

6. US government has decided to return over 100 antiquities stolen by smugglers from India.

  • These antiquities of Indian origin had reached the international market through right and wrong routes, but America's decision to return them to India shows the emotional connection between the two countries.
  • In an effort to revive India's cultural and spiritual heritage, the Indian government is bringing back antiquities and artifacts from around the world.
  • The pieces being returned include the Ark Parikkara made of marble and valued at approximately US$85,000.
  • The piece was smuggled from India to New York in May 2002.
  • On several foreign visits, the Prime Minister discussed the matter with global leaders and multilateral institutions and a total of 251 antiquities have been brought back to India, of which 238 have been brought back since 2014.
  • Even in 2022 the US authorities returned to India some antiquities that were stolen by several small smuggling networks, valued at around USD 4 million.
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MMA) in New York had at least 77 antiquities in its catalogue. 16 of these antiquities had been returned to India.
  • The MMA's formidable Asia collection includes at least 94 artefacts of Jammu and Kashmir origin – 81 sculptures, five paintings, five pages of manuscripts, two Kashmir period antiquities and a page of calligraphy.
  • The Archaeological Survey of India stated that the authentication of about 120 Indian antiquities in the US has been completed, and authentication of more antiquities is in progress.

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Topic: Personality in News

7. Politician Hardwar Dubey passed away recently.

  • He was a member of Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP).
  • He was a Member of Parliament in the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh.
  • He was a member of the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly from Agra Cantonment.
  • He was originally from Ballia, Uttar Pradesh.

Politician Hardwar Dubey

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Awards and Prizes

8. Dr. K. Venugopal has been chosen for an award by the Indian Medical Association.

  • Dr. K. Venugopal is a chief consultant in respiratory medicine at General Hospital, Alappuzha.
  • He has been selected for the award under the category of community service.
  • He will get the award at a function, which will be held at IMA headquarters in New Delhi on July 1.
  • The award has been instituted by the Indian Medical Association (IMA) to commemorate National Doctors’ Day on 1 July.
  • National Doctors’ Day is celebrated every year on 1 July to commemorate the contribution of Dr. Bidhan Chandra Roy, former CM of West Bengal, to the healthcare industry in India.
  • Dr. Roy was born on 1 July 1882 and died on 1 July 1962. Dr. Roy was honoured with Bharat Ratna in 1961.
  • The first National Doctor's Day was celebrated in July 1991.
  • Indian Medical Association (IMA) was set up in 1928. It is headquartered in New Delhi. Sahajanand Prasad Singh is its President.

Topic: State News/ Assam

9. First underwater tunnel of Assam to be constructed between Numaligarh and Gohpur.

  • Assam's first underwater tunnel will be constructed between Numaligarh and Gohpur through Brahmaputra river at Rs 6,000 crore.
  • The tenders for DPR preparation will open on July 4.
  • Both rails and vehicles will pass through the underwater tunnel.
  • It will further connect the north and south banks of the Brahmaputra River and bring a transformational change in transportation infrastructure.
  • To ensure smooth progress, preparations for the Detailed Project Report (DPR) and land selection are underway.
  • The tunnel will promote trade and commerce opportunities and will boost tourism in the state.
  • Currently, the Brahmaputra River is crossed by people through ferries or bridges, which is time-consuming and prone to disruptions during monsoon season.

Topic: State News/ Himachal Pradesh

10. Himachal Pradesh to set up a dedicated task force to combat drug menace.

  • The Himachal Pradesh government has decided to set up a special task force to combat the problem of the drug menace.
  • Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu emphasized the need for strict action against drug peddlers and to increase awareness campaigns to rescue the youth from the clutches of drug abuse.
  • Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu also presented awards to winners of various events organized under the ‘Pradhav’ (Wipe out drugs) campaign.
  • He also said that the Himachal Pradesh government has taken up the issue of making the Narcotics Act more stringent has taken up the issue of making the Narcotics Act more stringent with the Central Government.
  • Himachal Pradesh Tourism Department would provide training to individuals recovering from rehabilitation centers to integrate into mainstream society.
  • The state government is also planning to establish two State-of-the-art drug de-addiction-cum-rehabilitation centers in Himachal.
  • The State Government has sanctioned four new police stations. Three will be on the Kiratpur-Manali four-lane highway and one in Bir in Kangra district.

Topic: Defence

11. Exercise Ranvijay carried out by the IAF with a focus on integrated operations.

  • The Indian Air Force conducted exercise Ranvijay where day and night operations were carried out by fighter aircraft including Su-30 with focus on integration.
  • Exercise Ranvijay was conducted from June 16-23 in UB Hills and Central Air Command Area of Responsibility.
  • The focus was on integrated operations while optimally exploiting the electronic warfare capabilities of the Indian Air Force.
  • The exercise was conducted from various air bases of Command Headquarters at Prayagraj.
  • As part of the government's move to strengthen integration between the forces, various IAF commands are conducting maneuvers and aerial exercises to enhance jointness with the other two services.

Topic: Reports and Indices/Ranking

12. India ranked 40th spot in 2023 global competitiveness index.

  • International Institute for Management Development (IMD) has published the latest World Competitiveness Rankings.
  • Denmark, Ireland and Switzerland ranked on the top three places on the 64-nation list.
  • Singapore ranked 4th and Netherlands ra nked fifth in top five ranking.
  • The rest of the top 10 are Taiwan, Hong Kong, Sweden, the USA, and the UAE, respectively.
  • India dropped 3 places to rank 40, but is still in a better position than between 2019-2021, when it was ranked 43 for three consecutive years.
  • IMD World Competitiveness Center produces ranking annually. The ranking measures competitiveness of 64 nations with the help of four factors given below:
    • Economic performance
    • Government efficiency
    • Business efficiency
    • Infrastructure
  • The IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY) was first published in 1989. It is a comprehensive annual report and worldwide reference point on the competitiveness of countries.

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

13. Union Minister Parshottam Rupala launched NANDI.

  • On 26th June, NANDI (NOC Approvals for New Drugs & Inoculation System) has been launched by Union Minister Parshottam Rupala.
  • The NANDI portal has been developed for a resilient Animal Health Sector in India. It will help in streamlining and digitising the regulatory approval process.
  • Its primary goal is to accelerate the process to assess and examine the safety, efficacy, and essentiality of veterinary product proposals.
  • It will help in achieving the goal of making India a global manufacturing hub for veterinary products.
  • It will also foster research and development focused on improving Animal health.
  • The NANDI will ensure seamless approval of vaccines.
  • The launch of Mobile Veterinary Units and vaccination of all livestock in the country will bring a big change in the Animal Husbandry Sector.

Topic: Art and Culture

14. ‘1,000-year-old’ Jaina sculptures found near Hyderabad.

  • Two square pillars with sculptures of Jain Tirthankaras and inscriptions have been found on the outskirts of Hyderabad at Enikepalli village.
  • E. Sivanagireddy, archaeologist and CEO of Pleach India Foundation inspected the place on the information given by P. Srinath Reddy.
  • Two pillars, one of granite and another of black basalt, have sculptures of four Jaina Tirthankaras—Adinatha, Neminatha, Parsvanatha and Vardhamana Mahavira in meditation pose.
  • The pillars are decorated with Keerthimukhas on the top side and have Telugu-Kannada script on both slabs.
  • The visible part of one inscription is related to a Janina Basadi (monastery) that was a prominent Jaina centre during the Rashtrakuta and Vemulawada Chalukyan near to Chilukuru.
  • Tirthankara slabs might have been brought from a dilapidated Jain temple in the locality and fitted to the sluice about 100 years ago.
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