- 1. UNESCO will declare Visva-Bharati world’s first living heritage university very soon.
- 2. “Yuva Sangam” registration portal launched at Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi on 06 February 2023.
- 3. Telangana Finance Minister T Harish Rao introduced the Telangana Budget 2023-24 with an expenditure outlay of 2,90,396 crore rupees.
- 4. Yaya Tso has been proposed as Ladakh’s first Biodiversity Heritage Site (BHS) under the Biological Diversity Act.
- 5. India and the EU have announced the setting up of three Working Groups under the India-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC).
- 6. Two national youth records were created in athletics events at the Khelo India Youth Games on 05 February 2023.
- 7. ITBP won 3rd consecutive title in 12th edition of National Ice Hockey Championship.
- 8. An MoU signed by Agriculture Ministry to develop National Interactive Digital Platform.
- 9. Union Minister Bhupender Yadav launched the ‘Save Wetlands Campaign’ in Goa.
- 10. Government will push primary steel producers to use 50 per cent of their input from recycled steel by 2047.
- 11. CJI D Y Chandrachud administered oath to five new Supreme Court judges on 6 February.
- 12. Meeting of Heads of Supreme Audit Institutes of SCO Member States started in Lucknow on 6 February.
- 13. An earthquake of 7.8 magnitude hit Turkey and Syria.
- 14. Gujarat government signed an agreement with OECD for conducting PISA test of government school students.
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Topic: Art and Culture
1. UNESCO will declare Visva-Bharati world’s first living heritage university very soon.
- Visva-Bharati University will get the ‘heritage’ tag from UNESCO and it will become the world’s first living heritage university.
- Visva-Bharati University was founded by Rabindranath Tagore in 1921.
- It became a Central University in 1951 through a central Act. Its first vice-chancellor was Rathindranath Tagore.
- Rabindranath Tagore believed in open-air education and introduced that system in the University.
- Visva-Bharati was inaugurated as a centre of arts, language, humanities, and music.
- Visva-Bharati University is located in Shantiniketan, West Bengal. It is an Institution of National Importance.
- As of 2022, there are 40 World Heritage Sites in India. Out of which, 32 are cultural, 7 are natural, and one is mixed type.
- India has the sixth-largest number of World Heritage Sites in the world. Dholavira in the Cultural Category is the last added World Heritage Site from India.
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
2. “Yuva Sangam” registration portal launched at Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi on 06 February 2023.
- The portal was launched in presence of Minister of Education Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of Culture and Tourism G. Kishan Reddy, Minister of Law Kiren Rijiju and Minister of Sports & Youth Affairs Anurag Thakur.
- Yuva Sangam is an initiative to build close ties between the youth of the North East Region and the rest of India.
- Under the initiative, over 20,000 youth will travel across India. They will get a unique opportunity for cross-cultural learning.
- Minister of Culture and Tourism G. Kishan Reddy said that the Yuva Sangam program is an opportunity for the youth of the North East to explore the country.
- Yuva Sangam under Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat is an initiative by the Government of India to strengthen people-to-people connect especially between youth belonging to North Eastern India and other states.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: State News/Telangana
3. Telangana Finance Minister T Harish Rao introduced the Telangana Budget 2023-24 with an expenditure outlay of 2,90,396 crore rupees.
- This includes 37,525 crore rupees in capital expenditure and 2,11,685 crore rupees in revenue expenditure.
- He said that the state share in the country’s GDP has been recorded at 4.9%.
- Dalit Bandhu scheme has been allotted 17,700 crore rupees. The scheme offers financial assistance of 10 lakh rupees per beneficiary to start any business of their choice.
- The budget also allocated Rs 7,890 crore for the construction of double bed-room houses for the poor and Rs 15,075 crore for Rythu Bandhu.
- The budget proposed to spend Rs. 3,210 crore for flagship schemes of the state government- Kalyana Lakshmi and Shadi Mubarak.
- Rs 2,131 crore is proposed to be allocated to the Women and Child Development department.
- The government allocated Rs. 1,500 crore to Hyderabad Metro Rail.
- Finance Minister also said that it is estimated that the per capita income of Telangana will increase from 1,12,162 in 2013-14 to 3,17,115 in the current fiscal.
- Finance Minister T Harish Rao introduced a tax-free budget with a ₹40,000 crore increase in revenue receipts.
- Telangana government has also made a provision of ₹6,375 crore towards waiver of farm loans up to ₹90,000 in the next fiscal.
- The budget has projected the state to be revenue surplus. The fiscal deficit would be ₹38,234 crore. The primary deficit had been kept at ₹15,827 crore.
Topic: Environment and Ecology
4. Yaya Tso has been proposed as Ladakh’s first Biodiversity Heritage Site (BHS) under the Biological Diversity Act.
- Biodiversity Management Committee, the panchayat of Chumathang village, along with the GoI-UNDP-GEF SECURE Himalaya Project resolved to declare Yaya Tso as Ladakh’s first BHS.
- The proposed Yaya Tso site will have an approximate area of 60 square kilometers. This will also include the lake’s watershed.
- Yaya Tso is located at an altitude of 4,820 metres. It can be reached from Mahe monastery on the way to Tsomoriri Lake.
- Yaya Tso is a nesting habitat for birds such as the bar-headed goose, black-necked crane and brahminy duck.
- It is also one of the highest breeding sites of the black-necked crane in India.
- Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change launched SECURE Himalaya Project in collaboration with United Nations Development Program.
- Securing livelihoods, conservation, sustainable use and restoration of high range Himalayan ecosystems (SECURE) Himalaya Project was started in April 2017. It will end in March 2024.
5. India and the EU have announced the setting up of three Working Groups under the India-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC).
- One of these three Working Groups is the working group on Strategic Technologies, Digital Governance and Digital Connectivity.
- The other two Working Groups are the Working Group on Green and Clean Energy Technologies and the Working Group on Trade, Investment and Resilient Value Chains.
- PM Narendra Modi and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen launched the TTC in April 2022.
- The TTC with India is only the second such Council for the EU.
- It will be co-chaired on the Indian side by the Ministers for External Affairs, Commerce and Industry and Communications, Electronics and Information Technology.
6. Two national youth records were created in athletics events at the Khelo India Youth Games on 05 February 2023.
- Sonam from Delhi made a new record in 200 metre steeplechase with a timing of 6.45.71 minutes.
- Rajasthan’s Siddharth Chaudhary made a new record of 21.04 meters in the shot put.
- Madhya Pradesh won the overall championship in the boys’ category in athletics.
- Maharashtra won the overall championship in the girls’ category in athletics.
- In the medal tally, Maharashtra is in the first position with 79 medals. Out of these, 26 are gold medals.
- Haryana is in the second position with 53 medals including 22 gold.
- Madhya Pradesh is in the third position with 53 medals including 21 gold medals. Madhya Pradesh is hosting Khelo India Youth Games 2022.
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7. ITBP won 3rd consecutive title in 12th edition of National Ice Hockey Championship.
- For the third time in a row, the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) has won the National Ice Hockey Championship 2023.
- On 5 February, they won the 12th edition of the tournament organized by the Ice Hockey Association of India (IHAI).
- ITBP won the championship by defeating Ladakh Scouts in the finals by a score of 1-0.
- Many top teams of the country participated in this national competition held at the Ice Hockey Rink in Ladakh.
- Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP):
- It is one of the seven Central Armed Police Forces of India.
- It was created on 24 October 1962 under the CRPF Act, in the wake of the 1962 Sino-Indian War.
- Its headquarters is located in New Delhi. It guards Indo-China borders.
- It is also deployed in various internal security duties including anti-Naxal operations in Chhattisgarh.
8. An MoU signed by Agriculture Ministry to develop National Interactive Digital Platform.
- The Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare and Digital Green under a public-private partnership framework signed an MoU in New Delhi on 7 February.
- The MoU has been signed to build a national-level digital extension platform.
- The platform will host a digital library of curated multi-format multi-lingual content, which will help the extension workers to reach and distribute the curated content to the farmers on time.
- It will also deliver timely curated content to a vast network of extension functionaries for Agriculture, Horticulture, Fisheries, Livestock and Rural Livelihoods Mission through certified online courses.
- By connecting farmers to the robust ecosystem of the digital agriculture being established by the government, the proposed national digital platform would help make an extension system more effective and efficient.
- The digital capability of this extension system is important with the aim of helping farmers take advantage of digital agriculture.
- There are more than two lakh extension workers in agriculture, livelihood and allied sectors in the country.
(Source: News on Air)
Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives
9. Union Minister Bhupender Yadav launched the ‘Save Wetlands Campaign’ in Goa.
- The campaign has been launched for wetlands conservation, and affirmative actions for wetlands conservation at all levels of society.
- Under this campaign, citizen partnerships will be built for the conservation of wetlands. The campaign will be conducted over the next one year.
- The campaign will sensitize people about the value of wetlands and increase the coverage of wetland mitras.
- On this occasion, ‘India’s 75 Amrit Dharohar- India’s Ramsar Sites Factbook’ and ‘Managing Climate Risks in Wetlands - A Practitioner’s Guide was released.
- The Factbook has information about 75 Ramsar Sites, including their values, threats they face and management arrangements.
- The practitioner’s Guide on Climate Risk Assessment will provide guidance on assessing the site-level climate risks and mitigation responses for the wetland management plan.
- Union Minister highlighted the role of wetland ecosystems in ecological, economic and climate security.
Topic: Infrastructure and Energy
10. Government will push primary steel producers to use 50 per cent of their input from recycled steel by 2047.
- To achieve the target of circular economy, the government will push primary steel producers to use 50 per cent of their input from scrapped/recycled steel by 2047.
- At present, only around 10 per cent recycled steel is used in primary steel production.
- However, 22.5 per cent of recycled steel contributes to the domestic total steel production of 140 million tonnes.
- In the next five years, scrap usage is the steel industry will increase by 25 percent.
- India currently produces 25 million tonnes of scrap steel and imports 5 million tonne of scrap steel.
- There are more than 25000 recycling units in India and the recycling industry worth is about USD 50 billion.
- Domestic recyclers used to import 25 per cent of their shipments from the EU markets.
- Material Recycling Association of India (MRAI) hosted the 10th edition of the International Indian Material Recycling Conference from 2 - 4 February 2023 in Kochi. It is attended by over 2,000 delegates from 38 countries.
Topic: Indian Polity
11. CJI D Y Chandrachud administered oath to five new Supreme Court judges on 6 February.
- Five new judges - Pankaj Mithal, Sanjay Karol, PV Sanjay Kumar, Ahsanuddin Amanullah and Manoj Misra sworn in during the swearing-in ceremony held at the Supreme Court premises.
- With the appointment of five judges, the total strength of judges in the apex court has increased to 32, which is two judges short of full strength.
- On December 13, 2022, the Supreme Court Collegium recommended their names for elevation as judges of the apex court.
- The sanctioned judge strength of the Supreme Court is 34 (including the Chief Justice of India).
- The recommendations made on January 31 for the elevation of two other judges to the Supreme Court are still pending with the central government.
- Chief Justice of India and the Judges of the Supreme Court are appointed by the President under Article 124 of the Constitution.
- Criteria for judge of Supreme Court are as follows:
- A person must be a citizen of India a
- He/ She must have been a Judge of a High Court for at at least five years; or
- He should have been an advocate of a High Court for at least 10 years; or
- He should be a distinguished jurist in the opinion of the president.
(Source: News on AIR)
12. Meeting of Heads of Supreme Audit Institutes of SCO Member States started in Lucknow on 6 February.
- The 6th Meeting of the Heads of Supreme Audit Institutes (SAIs) of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Member States will take place in Lucknow from February 6-8.
- Governor of Uttar Pradesh Anandiben Patel is the chief guest. She inaugurated the meeting.
- Comptroller and Auditor General of India, Girish Chandra Murmu led the discussion on the theme "Integrating Emerging Technologies in Audit".
- Girish Chandra Murmu has called for global cooperation to protect audit from cyber security threats.
- He said that the use of information technology in the public sector has raised concerns related to cyber security.
- Therefore, it is necessary for the apex audit institutions of the member countries to develop adequate capacity to investigate issues related to cyber security.
- Shri Murmu informed that the Comptroller and Auditor General of India-CAG is using Artificial Intelligence technology in the audit process.
- This provides a more efficient and effective approach to the audit process and improves the overall quality of the audit.
- Heads of top audit institutions and delegations from four of the eight SCO member states - Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan - are participating in the three-day multilateral event.
- India is currently hosting the SCO presidency, which rotates annually among member states.
- Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO):
- On 15 June 2001, SCO was established in Shanghai with the aim of promoting mutual regional cooperation.
- It was established with the declaration of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization by the leaders of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
- In 2005, India was given 'observer' status in the SCO, and in 2017, India became a full member at the Astana summit.
(Source: News on AIR)
13. An earthquake of 7.8 magnitude hit Turkey and Syria.
- An earthquake of 7.8 magnitude hit southeastern Turkey and northwest Syria. It is one of the most deadly earthquakes in the history of Turkey.
- It was followed by 25 aftershocks, with six having magnitudes of more than 5.
- The epicentre of the earthquake was nearly 18 km deep and a few kilometres out from the Turkish city of Gaziantep.
- The tremors were felt also in Cyprus, Egypt and Lebanon.
- Another earthquake of magnitude 7.5 struck the Elbistan district in southern Turkey.
- The Indian government has decided to immediately send search and rescue teams of the National Disaster Response Force to Turkey.
- The reasons of Earthquake in Turkey are as follows:
- Turkey is one of the most earthquake-prone countries in the world.
- The main reason for the earthquake in Turkey is the movement of the tectonic plates.
- Turkey is located between three different tectonic plates. The Eurasian Plate lies to its north while African Plate is in the south and the Arabian plate lies in east.
- The Arabian plate is pushing the Eurasian plate due to which Earthquakes occur in Turkey.
- The earthquake and aftershocks on 6 February occurred near the East Anatolian Fault Zone.
Topic: State News/ Gujarat
14. Gujarat government signed an agreement with OECD for conducting PISA test of government school students.
- The agreement was signed by Samagra Shiksha project director Ratnakanwar Gadhvicharan and Kevin O’Brien from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
- Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) test aims to achieve grade-appropriate learning outcomes in government schools.
- Gujarat becomes the first state to sign such an agreement.
- The PISA test will measure ability of reading, mathematics and science knowledge and skills of 15–year-old students.
- It will also test critical thinking, problem-solving and effective communication skills in students.