Daily Current Affairs and GK | 5 October 2023

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 05 Oct 2023 17:14 PM IST

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Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

1. Government increased the LPG subsidy under the Ujjwala scheme to ₹300 per cylinder.

  • The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has decided to increase the subsidy from ₹ 200 per 14.2-kg cylinders for up to 12 refills per year to ₹ 300 per bottle.
  • Under the Ujjwala scheme, a 14.2-kg LPG cylinder will now cost ₹603 for beneficiaries as against the current ₹703.
  • This decision will benefit around 9. 6 crore families.
  • In August, the government reduced the 14.2-kg LPG refill price by ₹200.
  • ₹6,100 crore was provided as Ujjwala subsidy in 2022-23. It has increased to ₹7,680 crore in fiscal year 2023-24.
  • Recently, oil companies have also increased the price of commercial LPG by ₹209.
  • The government has recently expanded the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) till the financial year 2026.
  • India imports about 60 per cent of its liquefied petroleum gas requirement. The price of LPG globally has increased by more than 300 per cent since April 2020.
  • Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY):
    • It was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2016.
    • Its main objective is to provide deposit-free LPG connections to women from poor households.
    • It helps in providing clean fuel to women, especially in rural areas.
    • It reduced the number of deaths due to respiratory illness.

Topic: Defence

2. Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh launched Swavalamban 2.0.

  • Swavalamban 2.0 is the Navy's updated indigenous programme.
  • He addressed the Indian Navy's Naval Innovation and Indigenisation Organisation (NIIO) seminar 'Swavlamban' in New Delhi.
  • He also released the fifth Positive Indigenisation list of 98 items.
  • Raksha Mantri said that the list shows the major step in the Indigenisation process of the Armed forces.
  • He talked about the 'SPRINT’ Challenges. The objective of Sprint innovative challenge is to promote the use of indigenous technology and products in the Navy. 
  • In July 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled 'SPRINT Challenges'.
  • Under 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav', NIIO and the Defence Innovation Organisation (DIO) aim at inducting at least 75 new indigenous technologies/products into the Indian Navy.
  • This collaborative project is called SPRINT (Supporting Pole-Vaulting in R&D through iDEX, NIIO and TDAC).
  • Raksha Mantri also launched two INDUS X challenges under ‘INDUS-X Mutual Promotion of Advanced Collaborative Technologies’ (IMPACT) challenges jointly finalised by iDEX and the United States Department of Defence.
  • He also launched the SBI NAVeCash Card. It can be used in online mode as well as in offline mode while at sea with no direct connectivity with the bank.

Topic: State News/Rajasthan

3. PM Modi laid the foundation stone and dedicate development projects worth about Rs 5000 cr at Jodhpur, Rajasthan.

  • He laid the foundation stone of 350 bedded Trauma Centre and Critical Care Hospital Block at All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur.
  • He laid the foundation stone of seven Critical Care Blocks under the Pradhan Mantri - Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission (PM-ABHIM) to be developed across Rajasthan.
  • He also laid the foundation stone for the development of the state-of-the-art New Terminal Building at Jodhpur Airport.
  • The New Terminal Building will be developed at a total cost of 480 crore rupees in an area of about 24,000 sqm.
  • He also dedicated the IIT Jodhpur campus to the Nation. It has been built at a cost of more than 1135 crore rupees.
  • He laid the foundation stone of multiple road development projects to be built at a cumulative cost of about 1475 crore rupees. The projects are given below.
    • Four laning of Karwar to Dangiyawas Section of Jodhpur Ring Road on NH-125A
    • Construction of seven Bypasses/Re-alignments of major town portions of Balotra to Sanderao section via Jalore (NH-325)
    • Project for four laning of Pachpadra-Bagundi section of NH-25
  • He also flagged off two new train services in Rajasthan. These include Runicha Express - connecting Jaisalmer to Delhi and a new heritage train connecting Marwar Jn. - Khambli Ghat.
  • He also dedicated to the nation the projects for doubling the 145 km long ‘Degana-Rai Ka Bagh' rail line and the 58 km long 'Degana-Kuchaman City' rail line.

Topic: Important Days

4. National Dolphin Day: 05 October

  • National Dolphin Day is celebrated every year to create awareness about the conservation of the national aquatic animal.
  • In 2022, the National Board for Wildlife has accorded the 5th October as National Dolphin Day.
  • Dolphin inhabits the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna and Karnaphuli-Sangu river systems of Nepal, India, and Bangladesh.
  • On the demand of the Bihar government, the Central government declared the Gangetic Dolphin as National Aquatic Animal in 2010.
  • Gangetic Dolphins are also called Sauns in Bihar. Former Professor of Zoology in Patna University Dr. R K Sinha got sobriquet of Dolphin Man of India.
  • The presence of the Dolphin in a river system shows its good health.
  • Dolphins are ideal ecological indicators of a healthy aquatic ecosystem.
  • They are recognized as ‘highly endangered’ in Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act (1972). 

Topic: National News

5. The constitution of the National Turmeric Board has been notified by the Government of India on 4 September.

  • The National Turmeric Board will focus on the development and growth of turmeric and turmeric products in the country.
  • This board will establish better coordination with the Spices Board and other government agencies on turmeric-related issues.
  • This board will play a major role in creating a new market for turmeric at the global level by increasing its use and export.
  • It will specifically focus on capacity building and skill development of turmeric growers to derive greater benefits from value addition.
  • Farmers of Telangana have been demanding this for a long time.
  • The board will have a chairman appointed by the Government and representatives from the Ministry of AYUSH, Central Government Departments of Pharmaceuticals, Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Commerce and Industry, representatives from the three states, selected turmeric farmers and exporters.
  • The Secretary of the Board will be appointed by the Department of Commerce.
  • India is the largest producer, consumer, and exporter of turmeric in the world.
  • Turmeric was cultivated in an area of 3.24 lakh hectares in India with a production of 11.61 lakh tonnes (more than 75% of global turmeric production) in the year 2022-23.
  • More than 30 varieties of turmeric are grown in 20 states of the country.
  • Maharashtra, Telangana, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu are the largest producers of turmeric in the country.
  • India has a 62% share in the global turmeric trade.
  • During 2022-23, 1.534 lakh tonnes of turmeric and turmeric products worth $207.45 million were exported by more than 380 exporters.
  • The major export markets for Indian turmeric are Bangladesh, UAE, USA, and Malaysia.

Topic: MoUs/ Agreements

6. National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) and Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) have entered into a partnership.

  • NIIF has partnered with JBIC to launch a $600 million India-Japan Fund (IJF) with JBIC and the Government of India as anchor investors.
  • This joint initiative signals a major dimension of cooperation between the two countries in a shared priority area, namely climate and environment.
  • This announcement marks NIIF's first bilateral fund in which the Government of India will contribute 49% of the target fund and JBIC will contribute the remaining 51%.
  • NIIF Limited will manage the fund and JBIC IG (a subsidiary of JBIC) will assist NIIFL in enhancing Japanese investments in India.
  • The India-Japan Fund will focus on investing in environmental sustainability and low-carbon emissions strategies.
  • It aims to play the role of becoming a 'partner of choice' to further increase Japan's investment in India.
  • The formation of the India-Japan Fund marks an important achievement in the strategic and economic partnership between both Governments.

Topic: Awards and Prizes

7. Moungi G Bawendi, Louis E Brus, and Alexei Ekimov have won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 2023.

  • They have won the award for their discovery and synthesis of quantum dots.
  • Quantum dots are tiny nanoparticles. Their properties are determined by their size.
  • Their discovery has significantly contributed to the technology of QLED televisions and LED lamps.
  • Their clear light can illuminate tumour tissue for a surgeon.
  • In the future, they can contribute to flexible electronics, minuscule sensors, slimmer solar cells and encrypted quantum communication.
  • Morten Meldal, Carolyn R. Bertozzi, and K. Barry Sharpless won the Nobel Prize 2022 in Chemistry for their work in ‘click chemistry’.

Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 2023

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Important Days

8. National Zoological Park started the celebration of 69th Wildlife Week with the theme "Partnerships for wildlife conservation".

  • Wildlife Week celebration starts every year on the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
  • It is also celebrated to follow his principles of Ahinsa and Compassion for all living beings.
  • The National Zoological Park is celebrating “Wildlife Week - 2023” from 02 October 2023 to 8 October 2023.
  • The aim of the activities planned for the week at National Zoological Park is to use inclusive and collective participation for the conservation cause.
  • The programme began with a floral tribute for animals who died in the National Zoological Park.
  • Awareness activities were organized like Nukkad Natak, expert talk on Biodiversity, etc.

Topic: State News/ Bihar

9. Bihar government announced a 10% reservation for EWS in judicial services.

  • 10% reservation for EWS in judicial services and state-run law colleges and universities has been announced by the Bihar government.
  • This announcement comes just a day after the release of the first set of data from Bihar’s caste survey by the government on October 2.
  • This decision was taken during a cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
  • The state cabinet has approved amendments in the guidelines of the State Judicial Services, 1951.
  • The state cabinet also approved the construction of 100 veterinary hospitals in the state.
  • The state cabinet approved the addition of 30 clerk positions to handle matters related to the Consumers Affairs Department.

Topic: Sports

10. ICC announced Sachin Tendulkar as the 'Global Ambassador' for the ODI World Cup.

  • The International Cricket Council made Sachin Tendulkar as the 'Global Ambassador' for the Cricket World Cup 2023.
  • Sachin Tendulkar represented in six editions of the World Cups. He is the highest run-scorer in the ODI World Cup.
  • Sachin Tendulkar was part of the 2011 Indian team that won the World Cup.
  • He is joined by nine fellow legends of the game who will bring the fans closer to the Cricket World Cup 2023.
  • The Cricket World Cup 2023 will start from Narendra Modi Stadium on 5th October.
  • The first match is scheduled to be between England and New Zealand.
  • Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, England, India, Netherlands, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa and Sri Lanka are participating in the World Cup.
  • 'Blaze' and 'Tonk' are the official mascots for Cricket World Cup 2023.
  • ‘Blaze' is a female mascot, bowling at a rapid pace, leaving batters in sheer awe.
  • 'Tonk' is a male mascot, with icy-cool composure, making him a batting champion.
  • The matches will be played across 10 venues and will conclude on November 19 at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.

UP GK - Uttar Pradesh General Knowledge

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Topic: State News/ Jammu & Kashmir

11. Famous Pashmina of Jammu and Kashmir received geographical recognition with a GI tag.

  • Basohli Pashmina is an over 100-year-old traditional craft from the Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir.
  • The Department of Industries and Commerce achieved this feat in collaboration with NABARD Jammu and the Human Welfare Association, Varanasi.
  • In early 2023, the famous Basohli painting and Chikri wood of the Rajouri district of Jammu division got the GI tag.
  • Basohli Pashmina, a hand-spun product known for its extreme softness, fineness, and lightweight, has insulation properties and extended life, and all these qualities make Basohli Pashmina unique.
  • Pashmina products include shawls, mufflers, blankets, and baskets for both men and women.
  • GI tag is a name or sign given to certain products belonging to specific geographical locations.

Topic: Important Days

12. World Teachers Day 2023: 5 October

  • Every year on 5 October World Teachers' Day or International Teachers’ Day is observed to recognize the work of teachers, researchers, and professors.
  • The theme of World Teachers' Day 2023 is "The Teachers We Need for the Education We Want: The Global Imperative to Reverse the Teacher Shortage".
  • It is observed to honour teachers for their valuable contributions to society.
  • In 1994, UNESCO declared 5 October as World Teachers’ Day.
  • The day highlights the importance of quality teachers to guide or motivate students.

Topic: Banking System

13. SBI launched a ‘Mobile Handheld Device’ to bring financial inclusion to Doorstep.

  • The State Bank of India has launched a ‘Mobile Handheld Device’ to enhance accessibility and convenience in availing banking services.
  • This innovative service has been unveiled by Dinesh Khara.
  • Its main aim is to empower financial inclusion and extend essential banking services to the masses.
  • It will revolutionize banking accessibility by bringing kiosk banking directly to customer’s doorstep.
  • It will particularly benefit customers who are Senior citizens and Divyangjans.
  • Cash withdrawal, cash deposit, fund transfer, balance inquiry and mini statement services will be provided by this Mobile Handheld Device.
  • These services account for more than 75% of the total transactions conducted at SBI’s CSP outlets.
  • SBI is also planning to include services such as enrolments under social security schemes, account opening, remittance and card-based services.

Mobile Handheld Device

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Defence News

14. HAL handed over a twin-seater variant of the LCA Tejas fighter aircraft to IAF.

  • The Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) handed over the twin-seater variant of LCA Tejas fighter aircraft to the Indian Air Force.
  • Union Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt was the chief guest during the function.
  • This version of LCA has all the capabilities to support the training requirements of the IAF.
  • LCA Tejas twin seater is a lightweight multi-role 4.5 generation aircraft.
  • LCA Tejas has been indigenously built. It has static stability, quadruplex fly-by-wire flight control, carefree manoeuvring, advanced glass cockpit, and integrated digital avionics systems.
  • The induction of this aircraft into the Indian Airforce made India one of the few elite countries that have created such capability and made it operational in its defence forces.
  • IAF is purchasing 18 twin-seaters from HAL. Eight of them will be delivered during 2023-24. The remaining 10 would be delivered progressively by 2026-27.
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