Current Affairs August 27th & 28th 2023| Current Affairs News

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CURRENT AFFAIRS : BANKING & FINANCE

India’s banking system liquidity slips into deficit for 1st time in FY24

  • India’s banking system liquidity has slipped into deficit for the 1st time this financial year(2023) after the Reserve Bank of India’s temporary liquidity withdrawal move and tax outflows.

Key Highlights : 

  • As of August 21, 2023, the liquidity of the Indian banking system was reported at Rs 236 billion ($2.84 billion), according to data provided by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
  • This marked a significant departure from the scenario at the beginning of August 2023 when the banking system enjoyed a surplus liquidity of 2.8 trillion rupees.
  • However, liquidity has been declining especially after RBI asked banks to hold an incremental cash reserve ratio (CRR) of 10% on an increase in deposits between May 19 and July 28, 2023.
  • This has led to the withdrawal of over 1 trillion rupees.

What is Banking System Liquidity? 

  • Liquidity in the banking system refers to readily available cash that banks need to meet short-term business and financial needs.

IRDAI lowers the minimum capital requirement for foreign reinsurers to Rs 50 crores

  • The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has decided to decrease the minimum capital requirement for Foreign Reinsurance Businesses (FRBs) from Rs 100 crores to Rs 50 crores with an aim to attract more foreign reinsurers to operate in India and participate in the Indian insurance market.
  • During its 123rd Authority meeting, the IRDAI sanctioned a series of amendments to the Reinsurance Regulations to harmonise and streamline the existing regulations applicable to Indian insurers, Indian reinsurers, Foreign Reinsurance Branches (FRBs), and International Financial Services Centre Insurance Offices (IIOs).

Key Highlights : 

  • Alongside lowering the capital requirement, IRDAI has also restructured the order of preference to 4 categories from the existing 6 levels.

Category 1: 

  • This category includes Indian Reinsurers, notably the sole reinsurer, GIC Re.
  • They will have the highest priority in the reinsurance market.

Category 2: 

  • Comprising International Financial Services Centre Insurance Offices (IIOs) and Foreign Reinsurance Branches (FRBs) that invest 100% of retained premiums from Indian insurers within India’s domestic territory.
  • These entities will be the second preference for insurers seeking reinsurance.

Category 3: 

  • Encompasses ‘Other IIOs,’ which have a slightly lower priority in the reinsurance hierarchy.

Category 4: 

  • Consists of other Indian Insurers (limited to per-risk facultative placements in the insurance segment) and cross-border reinsurers (CBRs).
  • This category will have the lowest preference level.
  • To reduce dual compliance requirements, the regulatory framework for International Financial Services Centre Insurance Offices (IIOs) will be aligned with the regulations set forth by the International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA).

Recent News : 

  • In July 2023, The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) selected Tata AIG General Insurance Company Limited as the non-life insurer for the State of Maharashtra to initiate and drive activities in collaboration with all other non-life and health insurance companies to increase insurance penetration in the State in line with its vision “Insurance for all by the year 2047”.

About IRDAI : 

  • Established : 1999
  • Headquarters : Hyderabad, Telangana
  • Chairperson : Debasish Panda
  • The IRDAI is a statutory body under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Finance (MoF), Government of India (GoI) and is tasked with regulating and licensing the insurance and reinsurance industries in India.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: NATIONAL NEWS

Union Minister of Civil Aviation & Steel Releases Book on AAI Airports’ Terminal Building Architecture

  • Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia released a coffee table book on traditional and local architecture of various terminal buildings at AAI airports.
  • The book showcases the facade of terminal buildings at 19 Senior civil aviation ministry officials and heads of AAI, DGCA, and BCAS, among others were present at the launch of the book titled “Traditional & Local Architecture on Elevation & Design of Upcoming New Terminal Buildings” in the national capital.
  • For the new buildings being constructed, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) makes conscious efforts to bring in the local architecture and culture in the facade and interiors, AAI Chairman Sanjeev Kumar said before the release of the book.
  • The airport terminal building orchestrates the seamless transition between aircraft and ground transportation, serving as a conduit for the various services associated with air travel.
  • A terminal becomes a gateway that shapes visitors’ initial impressions of a city.
  • They are no longer just simple structures of convenience and have to be seen as landmarks of the city, as marvels, which welcome visitors to the city and inspire a feeling of awe and wonder in travellers.

About AAI:

  • The Airports Authority of India, or AAI, is a Statutory body under the ownership of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Government of India.
  • AAI was constituted by an Act of Parliament and came into being on 1st April 1995 by merging the erstwhile National Airports Authority and the International Airports Authority of India.
  • Headquarters: New Delhi
  • Founded: 1 April 1995
  • Chairman: Sanjeev Kumar

Recent news

  • The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA), Airport Authority of India (AAI) and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) are organizing the upcoming edition of ‘Wings India 2024’.

CBDT launches a revamped National Website of the Income Tax Department:

  • The Income Tax Department has revamped its National website www.incometaxindia.gov.in with a user-friendly interface, value-added features, and new modules.
  • The newly revamped website was launched by Shri. Nitin Gupta, Chairman, Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT)), at the ‘Chintan Shivir’, organised by the Directorate of Income Tax (Systems) at Udaipur.
  • This website serves as a comprehensive repository of tax and other related information.
  • It provides access to Direct Tax laws, several other Allied Acts, Rules, Income Tax Circulars and Notifications, all cross-referenced and hyperlinked.
  • The site also offers a ‘Taxpayer Services Module’ featuring various tax tools to assist taxpayers in filing their income tax returns.
  • The revamped website has been aesthetically redesigned with a mobile-responsive layout.
  • The website also has a ‘Mega Menu’ for content, with new features, and functionalities.
  • For the convenience of the visitors to the website, all these new additions are explained through a guided virtual tour and new button indicators.

About CBDT:

  • Founded: 1963
  • Headquarters: New Delhi
  • Chairman: Nitin Gupta

Recent news

  • Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) stated that in a set of guidelines Online gaming platforms need not deduct tax at source on winnings withdrawn by players if the amount is less than ₹100 a month and meets certain riders.

Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan lays the foundation stone for Central Tribal University in Andhra Pradesh

  • The Union Government has proposed to start a Tribal University in the Parvatipuram Manyam district of the northern region of Andhra Pradesh.
  • The Union Minister for Education and Skill Development Dharmendra Pradhan laid the foundation stone for the Central Tribal University at Saluru
  • The central Tribal University will improve the educational standards in the northern region of Andhra Pradesh.
  • The Union Minister also mentioned that the Central Tribal University has been located in the tribal area of Parvati Puram Manyam district which stands as a mark of the freedom fighter Alluri Sitaramaraju.
  • The Tribal University is all set to offer 24 academic courses at Degree, short-term courses in skill development, vocational and job-oriented courses and promote the individual, cultural environmental development of the tribal population.

About Andhra Pradesh

  • Capital: Amaravati
  • Governor: S. Abdul Nazeer
  • Chief minister: YS Jagan Mohan Reddy

Recent News

  • Union Education and Skill Development Minister Dharmendra Pradhan launched AI for India 2.0, a free online training programme on Artificial Intelligence, on the occasion of World Youth Skills Day.

Indian Mission in Bahrain Launches a New Mobile App to Ease Consular Access

  • The Embassy of India in Bahrain hosted an open house session under the guidance of Ambassador Designate Vinod Kurian Jacob.
  • The event marked the introduction of the novel mobile application, EoIBh-Connect, designed to facilitate online appointment booking for a spectrum of consular and visa services, accessible through both the Indian Embassy at Manama, Bahrain.
  • Having made its debut on August 20, 2023, the app has swiftly broadened its capabilities, now enabling users to conveniently schedule appointments with IVS Global.
  • This unified approach directs users to the appropriate service provider based on their chosen service, simplifying the process.
  • Ambassador Designate Jacob took the opportunity at the open house to encourage community members to integrate the new app into their routines and leverage it for appointment bookings.
  • He extended gratitude to local authorities and the Indian community for their steadfast support.
  • The open house saw a turnout of over 75 Indian nationals, with interactions facilitated in Hindi, English, Tamil, and Malayalam.
  • Alongside the app launch, the event featured a panel of legal experts who fielded community queries on consular and legal matters.

CURRENT AFFAIRS : INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Conferred With Greece’s Grand Cross Of The Order Of Honour

  • Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi was conferred with the prestigious Grand Cross of the Order of Honour by Greek President Katerina N Sakellaropoulou, a special honour reflecting the strength of the India-Greece partnership.
  • Shri Narendra Modi became the first foreign Head of Government to receive the Grand Cross of the Order of Honor.

About Grand Cross of the Order of Honour : 

  • The Grand Cross of the Order of Honor, an award established in 1975 to honour individuals for their contributions to Greece.
  • The Star of the Order features the head of the goddess Athena and the inscription “ONLY THE RIGHTEOUS SHOULD BE HONOURED,” representing the values of honour and righteousness.
  • The Grand Cross is conferred on eminent personalities, including Prime Ministers, who have significantly contributed to enhancing Greece’s status and interests while holding distinguished positions.
  • Modi’s visit to Greece marked the first by an Indian Prime Minister in over four decades, strengthening the diplomatic ties between the two nations.

Key Highlights : 

  • Besides this, PM Modi also paid homage at the “Tomb of the Unknown Soldier” in Athens.
  • He arrived in Greece from Johannesburg in South Africa after attending the 15th BRICS summit.
  • This will be the first visit to Greece by an Indian Prime Minister in 40 years.
  • In September 1983, the last high-level visit to Greece was made by the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

Bilateral Relations and Agreements : 

  • Civilizational Ties: India and Greece share deep-rooted civilizational ties that have been reinforced by collaborative efforts in maritime transport, defence, trade, investment, and people-to-people exchanges.
  • Economic Cooperation: Both nations aim to double bilateral trade by 2030, focusing on trade, investment, shipping, migration, and defence cooperation. They also plan to enhance defence industrial collaboration.
  • Migration Partnership: The leaders discussed a Mobility and Migration Partnership Agreement (MMPA) to facilitate the free movement of the workforce between the two countries, bolstering skilled migration.
  • Sectoral Collaboration: The establishment of a Hellenic-Indian Joint Sub-committee on Agriculture signifies the mutual efforts to foster cooperation in agriculture for mutual benefits.

Other Honours received by PM Modi : 

  • In 2019, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was conferred with the King Hamad Order of the Renaissance (top honour in the Gulf country) by Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa.
  • He was honoured with Russia’s highest civilian award, Order of St Andrew Award, in 2019.
  • Also in 2019, he also received the Order of Zayed Award, the highest civilian honour of the UAE.
  • In 2020, Prime Minister Modi was conferred with the Legion of Merit award by then-President Donald Trump.

Recent News : 

  • In June,2023 Prime Minister Modi was conferred with the ‘Order of the Nile’, Egypt’s highest honour, by President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, during his visit to the Arab nation.

About Greece : 

  • President : Katerina Sakellaropoulou
  • Prime Minister : Kyriakos Mitsotakis
  • Capital : Athens
  • Currency : Euro

Iran, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are among 6 new nations set to join the BRICS

  • The 15th BRICS summit was held from the 22nd to 24th August,2023 at the Sandton Convention Centre in South Africa.
  • A major outcome of the BRICS Summit was the decision of the BRICS leaders to expand its membership to include 6 new members.
  • These countries are – Iran, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Egypt, and Ethiopia were set to enter BRICS from 1, 2024, joining current members Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa to make an 11-nation bloc.
  • This is significant as this move can strengthen BRICS’ claim of being a ‘voice of the Global South’.
  • The announcement was made at the BRICS summit in Johannesburg by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, whose country is the current BRICS chair.
  • 6 of the world’s top 10 oil producers will now be members of the BRICS, including Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, UAE, Brazil and Iran.

About 15th BRICS summit : 

  • The 15th BRICS summit was hosted by South Africa.
  • South Africa became Chair of BRICS on 1 January 2023.
  • Theme – BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Mutually Accelerated Growth, Sustainable Development and Inclusive Multilateralism
  • At the end of the summit, member countries adopted the Johannesburg II Declaration.

About BRICS : 

  • BRICS is a regional grouping of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.
  • South Africa was added in 2010.
  • BRICS decisions are unanimous, that is, all members have to agree for any move to go ahead.

China-Bhutan hold first meeting on ‘delimitation of boundary’

  • China and Bhutan held their first meeting of the Joint Technical Team on the Delimitation of the China-Bhutan Boundary in Beijing.
  • They agreed to speed up a boundary resolution and decided to hold the next meeting as soon as possible.
  • The two countries also agreed to hold the 25th round of boundary talks to maintain the positive momentum in their dialogue.

History of boundary talks between China and Bhutan : 

  • The boundary talks between Bhutan and China began in 1984.
  • The 24th round of talks was held in 2016.
  • The talks are largely focused on disputed areas to Bhutan’s north, and to its west.
  • China and Bhutan also agreed to accelerate and coordinate the implementation of the Three-Step Road Map.
  • India would be very concerned about any agreement between Bhutan and China that includes a “swap arrangement” between areas to the North (Jamparlung and Pasamlung valleys) with Doklam.
  • It will increase China’s proximity to India’s narrow “Siliguri corridor” that connects northeastern states with the rest of India.
  • In 2020, China made new claims on Bhutan’s East in the Sakteng sanctuary.

About China : 

  • Capital : Beijing
  • Currency : Renminbi

About Bhutan : 

  • Prime Minister : Lotay Tshering
  • Capital : Thimphu
  • Currency : Ngultrum

CURRENT AFFAIRS : STATE NEWS

Government of Uttar Pradesh Launches ‘Manav Sampada Portal’ to Bring Employees’ Activities Into Public Domain

  • The Uttar Pradesh (UP) Government introduced the ‘Manav Sampada Portal’ with the objective of instilling transparency and accountability in the functioning of officers and employees across all 74 departments in the state.
  • To oversee these operations and manage the portal, a new division (Section-5) will be established within the Personnel Department, with the Project Management Unit (PMU) operating at the National Informatics Centre (NIC) level.

About ‘Manav Sampada Portal’ : 

Comprehensive Service Details: 

  • By October 1, 2023, the portal will host comprehensive service-related information of personnel, encompassing various aspects such as appointment, joining, dismissal, leave management, online transfer system based on merit, annual appraisal report management, salary withdrawal, and service book management

Posting Profile Details: 

  • The portal will offer detailed posting profiles of personnel, including factors like disabilities, spousal government employment, and serious illnesses.
  • These details will be available with proper verification.

Salary Management: 

  • Salaries of officers and employees will be disbursed based on accurate and validated data extracted from both the ‘Manav Sampada Portal’ and the DDO (Drawing & Disbursing Officer) Portal, ensuring precision and reducing discrepancies.

Asset Declaration: 

  • The UP government mandated officers and employees to declare their movable and immovable assets on the website by December 2023.

Recent News : 

  • In July 2023, the Uttar Pradesh (UP) government launched the subsidy portal, in, paving the way for people to apply online for the subsidy available on purchase of electric vehicles (EVs) in UP.

About UP :

  • Governor : Anandiben Patel
  • Chief Minister : Yogi Adityanath
  • Capital : Lucknow
  • National Park : Dudhwa National ParkWildlife Sanctuary : Bakhira Wildlife Sanctuary, Chandraprabha Wildlife Sanctuary, National Chambal Wildlife Sanctuary

Telangana government partners with UNESCO to implement Recommendation on Ethics of Artificial Intelligence 

  • The Information Technology, Electronics and Communications (ITE&C) Department of the Government of Telangana has joined hands with United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) to implement the UNESCO Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence (AI) by signing a Letter of Intent to drive efforts and action.
  • The collaboration focuses on promoting the ethical development and use of AI awareness raising, capacity building, and contributions to UNESCO‘s Global Observatory on AI Ethics.
  • The partnership enables a shared commitment to an AI-powered future that prioritizes societal good and equitable development.

About Telangana:

  • Capital: Hyderabad
  • Governor: Tamilisai Soundararajan
  • Chief minister: K. Chandrashekar Rao

About UNESCO : 

  • Founded: 16 November 194
  • Headquarters: Paris, France
  • Director General : Audrey Azoulay
  • The UNESCO is a specialized agency of the United Nations aimed at promoting world peace and security through international cooperation in education, arts, sciences and culture

CURRENT AFFAIRS : APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATIONS

Tata Capital appoints Shubman Gill as its brand ambassador                                        

  • Tata Capital, a prominent financial services entity under the Tata Group, has announced the selection of Shubman Gill, a promising young cricket talent, as its brand ambassador.
  • This strategic move highlights the alignment of Shubman Gill’s aspirational image with Tata Capital’s commitment to serving India’s diverse and dynamic youth population.
  • Tata Capital is one of India’s largest Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC) backed by a diverse range of lending and wealth management products and operating across customer segments.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: AWARDS AND HONOURS

PM Modi becomes the first Foreign Head of Government to be awarded ‘The Grand Cross of the Order of Honour’ by the Greek govt

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has become the first Foreign Head of the Government to be awarded ‘The Grand Cross of the Order of Honour’ by the Greek government.
  • This recognition was given during Prime Minister Modi’s official visit to Greece.
  • Addressing media in Athens on Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Greece, Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra said that the citation accompanying the award recognises the Prime Minister’s contribution to India’s economic progress and prosperity as well as to the promotion of friendship, of bilateral relations with Greece.
  • Kwatra added that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was received with exceptional warmth and the discussions with the Greek Prime Minister were extensive and resulted in important and productive outcomes.

About Greece :

  • President: Katerina Sakellaropoulou
  • Prime Minister: Kyriakos Mitsotakis
  • Capital: Athens
  • Currency: Euro

Recent News

  • Greece’s conservative New Democracy (ND) party chief Kyriakos Mitsotakis won the national election & secured a second four-year term as Prime Minister (PM) of Greece.

SVAMITVA Scheme of the Ministry of Panchayati Raj won National Award for e-Governance 2023

  • SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages Abadi and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) Scheme of the Ministry of Panchayati Raj won the National Award for e-Governance 2023 (GOLD) for Application of Emerging Technologies for Providing Citizen Centric Services.
  • It is a recognition of excellent and exemplary work done by Team SVAMITVA and supported by Team NIC-MoPR.
  • Technology is evolving very fast and initiatives to integrate technology with governance reforms have started yielding results, The use of technology under the SVAMITVA Scheme has greatly facilitated citizen-centric governance and helped in comprehensive village planning to make rural India Atmanirbhar.
  • Through effective implementation, the SVAMITVA Scheme has been successful in providing an integrated property validation solution for rural India, improving the financial stability of the people living in rural areas and transforming lives in rural India.

CURRENT AFFAIRS: MOUS AND AGREEMENT

India and Greece have reached an agreement to increase bilateral trade by 2030 and enhance their partnership to a strategic level.

  • India and Greece plan to double their bilateral trade by 2030, announced Prime Minister Modi during his official visit to the country.
  • The bilateral trade stood at nearly $2 billion in 2022-2 3.
  • In the first Prime Ministerial visit to Greece after 40 years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis decided to elevate bilateral ties to strategic partnership, promised to double bilateral trade by 2030 and agreed to firm up a migration and mobility pact soon.
  • This is the first visit by an Indian prime minister to Greece after a gap of 40 years.
  • India mainly exports aluminium, organic chemicals, fish and crustaceans and iron and steel to Greece, among other things.
  • Meanwhile, Greece’s top exports to India are minerals fuels, mineral oils and products, sulphur and aluminium foil.
  • Both sides will also sign a migration and mobility agreement to improve the flow of people and talent between the two countries. Mint reported on this development in August.
  • The two countries also agreed to elevate bilateral ties to the level of a “strategic partnership”.

IIT Bombay partners with HSBC to support innovation-led green hydrogen initiatives

  • IIT Bombay has partnered with HSBC to pursue technological advancements towards making green hydrogen production more efficient, cost-effective, and scalable.
  • According to the media communique, the focus of the joint initiative will be on innovative projects that will help position green hydrogen as a strategic alternate fuel; help in building a robust, green hydrogen economy and achieve the government’s vision of an energy-independent nation.
  • This partnership will help boost the government’s National Green Hydrogen Mission focused on providing policy support towards achieving global leadership in the green hydrogen transition.
  • Speaking about this collaboration, Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director, of IIT Bombay said that moving towards sustainable and clean sources of energy is a crucial step in the global fight against climate change. Green Hydrogen – with its applications across industries including transportation – will occupy a vital space in global energy.
  • Mr Hitendra Dave, CEO, of HSBC India said that sustainability is a key element of our business, operations and community investments.

About HSBC Bank India :

  • Incorporated in India: 1 January 1983.
  • Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
  • CEO: Hitendra Dave

CURRENT AFFAIRS: RANKING AND REPORTS

Smart Cities awards: Madhya Pradesh is the best state, Indore retains the top spot

  • The central government declared 66 winners of the fourth edition of the India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC) which was launched in April 2022 at the Smart Cities-Smart Urbanisation event in Surat.
  • Madhya Pradesh emerged as the top performing state under the fourth edition of the India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC), organised under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Smart Cities Mission to upgrade the country’s cities.
  • Indore retained its top position, bagging the National Smart City Award.
  • Among states, Tamil Nadu was in the second position, and Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh shared the third spot jointly.
  • Among cities, Surat and Agra followed Indore at the second and third positions respectively.
  • In the previous edition of the contest, held in 2020, Uttar Pradesh was declared the best state whereas Surat and Indore were joint winners in the city category.
Award name Winner
Built Environment 1. Coimbatore: Model Roads, Restoration and Rejuvenation of Lakes
Built Environment 2. Indore: Riverfront Development (Stretch 1 from Rambagh Bridge to Krishnapura Chhatri)
Built Environment 3. New Town Kolkata: Landscape Redevelopment of Neem Banani Park and other Green Open Spaces
Built Environment 3. Kanpur: Modernisation and Development of Palika Sports Stadium
Culture 1. Ahmedabad: Revamping and upkeep of heritage structure and development of heritage tourism using technology
Culture 2. Bhopal: Restoration of heritage buildings near Sadar Manzil precinct under Heritage Walk Project
Culture 3. Thanjavur: Conservation of Ponds – Ayyankulam
Economy 1. Jabalpur: Incubation Centre
Economy 2. Indore: Value Capture Financing (VCF)
Economy 3. Lucknow: Rojgar Training Centre
Governance 1. Chandigarh: E-Governance Services for Chandigarh Smart City
Governance 2. Pimpri Chinchwad: Smart Sarathi app
Governance 3. Jabalpur: Implementation of 311 App
Governance 3. Udaipur: Smart City Application
ICCC Business Model 1. Ahmedabad: Traffic Management through ICCC
ICCC Business Model 2. Surat: Revenue Generation from different sources through ICCC
ICCC Business Model 3. Agra: Revenue generation through ICCC and Carbon emission reduction
ICCC Business Model 3. Gwalior: Intelligent traffic management system
National Smart City Award 1. Indore
National Smart City Award 2. Surat
National Smart City Award 3. Agra
UT Award 1. Chandigarh
State Award 1. Madhya Pradesh
State Award 2. Tamil Nadu
State Award 3. Rajasthan
State Award 3. Uttar Pradesh

What is PM Narendra Modi’s Smart Cities Mission?

  • Launched in June 2015, the Smart Cities Mission is aimed at providing core infrastructure, a clean and sustainable environment and a decent quality of life to their citizens through the application of smart solutions.
  • It is a transformational mission aimed at bringing about a paradigm shift in the practice of urban development in the country.
  • Of the total proposed projects under the Smart Cities Mission, 6,041 (76 per cent) projects worth Rs 1,10,635 crore have been completed and the remaining 1,894 projects worth Rs 60,095 crore will be completed by June 30, 2024, according to an official statement
  • The India Smart Cities Award Contest recognises and rewards the cities, projects and innovative ideas that are promoting sustainable development across the 100 smart cities, which have taken up projects across a host of sectors related to areas such as mobility, energy, water, sanitation, solid waste management, vibrant public spaces, social infrastructure, smart governance.

Jal Shakti Ministry releases report on 6th census on minor irrigation schemes

  • The Ministry of Jal Shakti released the report on the sixth census on minor irrigation schemes.
  • As per the report, 23.14 million minor irrigation (MI) schemes have been reported in the country, out of which 21.93 million are Ground Water (GW) and 1.21 million are Surface Water (SW) schemes.
  • For the first time, the information about the gender of the owner of the MI scheme was also collected in the case of individual ownership.
  • Out of all the individually owned schemes, 18.1 per cent are owned by women.
  • Uttar Pradesh possesses the largest number of MI schemes in the country followed by Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
  • The same ranking of states follows for the GW schemes.
  • Maharashtra leads in SW schemes followed by Karnataka, Telangana, Odisha and Jharkhand.
  • The report also revealed that there has been an increase of about 1.42 million in MI schemes as compared to the previous census.

CURRENT AFFAIRS : DEFENCE NEWS

IAF To Hold Multinational Exercise ‘Tarang Shakti’  in 2024

  • The Indian Air Force (IAF) is set to host a significant multilateral military exercise named ‘Tarang Shakti’ in the upcoming year(2024).
  • The exercise originally slated for October,2023 has been rescheduled to the middle of 2024 due to the participation constraints faced by several air forces.

Primary Focus : 

  • To bolster military cooperation among participating air forces.
  • It will be the biggest air exercise being organised in India.

About ‘Tarang Shakti’ : 

Multilateral Participation: 

  • The exercise is expected to witness the involvement of around 12 air forces, making it a substantial platform for collaboration.
  • This extensive participation underscores the exercise’s significance in fostering better relations and mutual understanding among nations.

Participating Nations : 

  • Air forces from countries such as France, the United Kingdom (UK), Australia, the United States (US), and Japan are expected to be part of the exercise.
  • These 6 nations bring their aerial assets, including fighter jets, military transport aircraft, and mid-air refuelling capabilities.

Observer Nations: 

  • Additionally, 6 other nations have been invited to observe the exercise, showcasing the exercise’s inclusive approach and potential for knowledge sharing.

Recent News : 

  • In April,2023 the Indian Air Force (IAF) sent 4 Rafale jets, 2 C-17 aircraft and 2 IL-78 mid-air refuellers for a nearly 3-week multinational air exercise at France’s Mont-de-Marsan military base.
  • The 6th edition of Cope India-2023, an Air Exercise between the Indian Air Force (IAF) and United States Air Force (USAF), conducted at Air Force Stations Kalaikunda, Panagarh and Agra, culminated on 24 Apr 2023.

About IAF : 

  • Established : 1932
  • Headquarters : New Delhi, Delhi
  • Chief of the Air Staff :  Air Chief Marshal Vivek Ram Chaudhari

Iran Unveils Armed Drone Mohajer-10- Resembling America’s MQ-9 Reaper

  • During a conference commemorating Defence Industry Day, Iran’s Defence Ministry unveiled its new domestically built drone named Mohajer-10 , resembling America’s armed MQ-9 Reaper.
  • “Mohajer” means “immigrant” in Farsi and has been a drone line manufactured by the Islamic Republic since 1985.

Key Features :

  • The Mohajer-10 has enhanced capabilities like flying at a higher altitude, for a longer duration and the ability to carry a greater payload.

Flight Duration and Range:

  • The drone can fly up to a maximum duration of 24 hours at an altitude of 7,000 metres with an operational range of 2,000 kilometres.”

Payload Capacity: 

  • The drone is able to fly up to 24,000 feet with a speed of 210 kph (130 mph), carrying a bomb payload of up to 300 kilograms (660 pounds), which is double the capacity of the “Mohajer-6″ drone.

Surveillance and Reconnaissance: 

  • The drone is equipped to carry electronic surveillance equipment and a camera, enhancing its intelligence-gathering capabilities.

Upgraded Version: 

  • The Mohajer-10 is considered an upgraded version of the “Mohajer-6” drone, can carry a 150-kilogram payload, operate for 12 hours, and reach a maximum altitude of 5,400 metres (17,716 feet).

About Iran : 

  • President : Ebrahim Raisi
  • Capital : Tehran
  • Currency : Iranian rial

CURRENT AFFAIRS: SPORTS NEWS

Visually Impaired Indian women’s team wins IBSA World Cup final beating Australia in Birmingham

  • Indian women’s visually impaired team won the T-20 final of the International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) World Games at Birmingham.
  • The Indian team defeated Australia by nine wickets in the rain-interrupted match.
  • Australia had set a target of 115 runs, but due to rain, the match was reduced to 9 overs and the target was revised to 42 runs.
  • India achieved the target in just 3.3 overs, losing one wicket.
  • Meanwhile, the Indian men’s visually impaired team will take on Pakistan in the finals of the International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) World Games 2023.

About UK :

  • Prime Minister: Rishi Sunak
  • Capital: London
  • Currency: Pound sterling

About IBSA

  • The International Blind Sports Federation is a non-profit organisation founded in 1981 in Paris, France. It was formerly known as the International Blind Sports Association.
  • Founded: 1981
  • Headquarters: Bonn, Germany
  • President: Sandro Di Girolamo

CURRENT AFFAIRS : OBITUARIES

Veteran Bollywood lyricist Dev Kohli passed away

  • Renowned lyricist and poet Dev Kohli Passed away at the age of 80 in Mumbai, Maharashtra.

About Dev Kohli : 

  • Dev Kohli was born on November 2, 1942, in Rawalpindi, Pakistan.
  • From Shankar-Jaikishan to Vishal-Shekhar, he worked with different generations of composers in a career that spanned from 1969 to 2013
  • He penned hundreds of songs in Bollywood films and wrote many hit songs such as Maaye Ni Maaye, Yeh Kaali Kaali Aankhen, Geet Gaata Hoon,O Saki Saki etc
  • Dev Kohli wrote songs for more than 100 hit films, like  ‘Maine Pyar Kiya’, ‘Baazigar’, ‘Judwaa 2’, ‘Musafir’, ‘Shoot Out At Lokhandwala’, and ‘Taxi Num 911’, among others.
  • He also worked on many hits with music directors like Anu Malik, Raam Laxman, Anand Raaj Anand, Anand Milind and others.
  • He last wrote songs for the Kangana Ranaut-starrer Rajjo, which had music by Uttam Singh.

Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin killed in plane crash

  • Mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin, who led a brief armed rebellion against Russia’s military leadership in June, was killed in a plane crash.
  • Prigozhin was among 10 passengers on board the plane that crashed in the northern region of Moscow on 23 August, 2023.
  • A plane flying from Moscow to St. Petersburg crashed in the Tver region, killing all passengers, including the 3 pilots.
  • According to reports, Dmitri Utkin, the commander of the mercenary group Wagner and one of the founders of the group, was also killed in the incident.
  • Reasons ranging from technical problems to explosions in the aircraft are being expressed.
  • It was considered the biggest challenge against the regime since President Vladimir Putin came to power.

Daily CA One- Liner: 27th & 28th August

  • India’s banking system liquidity has slipped into deficit for the 1st time this financial year(2023) after the Reserve Bank of India’s temporary liquidity withdrawal move and tax outflows.
  • The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has decided to decrease the minimum capital requirement for Foreign Reinsurance Business (FRBs) from Rs 100 crore to Rs 50 crore with an aim to attract more foreign reinsurers to operate in India and participate in the Indian insurance market.
  • Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia released a coffee table book on traditional and local architecture of various terminal buildings at AAI airports.
  • The Income Tax Department has revamped its National website www.incometaxindia.gov.in with a user-friendly interface, value-added features, and new modules.
  • The Union Government has proposed to start a Tribal University in the Parvatipuram Manyam district of the northern region of Andhra Pradesh.
  • The Embassy of India in Bahrain hosted an open house session under the guidance of Ambassador Designate Vinod Kurian Jacob.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has become the first Foreign Head of the Government to be awarded ‘The Grand Cross of the Order of Honour’ by the Greek government.
  • SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages Abadi and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) Scheme of the Ministry of Panchayati Raj won the National Award for e-Governance 2023 (GOLD) for Application of Emerging Technologies for Providing Citizen Centric Services.
  • India and Greece plan to double their bilateral trade by 2030, announced Prime Minister Modi during his official visit to the country.
  • IIT Bombay has partnered with HSBC to pursue technological advancements towards making green hydrogen production more efficient, cost-effective, and scalable.
  • The central government declared 66 winners of the fourth edition of the India Smart Cities Award Contest (ISAC) which was launched in April 2022 at the Smart Cities-Smart Urbanisation event in Surat.
  • Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi was conferred with the prestigious Grand Cross of the Order of Honour by Greek President Katerina N Sakellaropoulou, a special honour reflecting the strength of the India-Greece partnership.
  • The 15th BRICS summit was held from the 22nd to 24th August,2023 at the Sandton Convention Centre in South Africa & a major outcome of the BRICS Summit was the decision of the BRICS leaders to expand its membership to include 6 new members Iran, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Egypt, and Ethiopia were set to enter BRICS from 1, 2024.
  • China and Bhutan held their first meeting of the Joint Technical Team on the Delimitation of the China-Bhutan Boundary in Beijing.
  • The Uttar Pradesh (UP) Government introduced the ‘Manav Sampada Portal’ with the objective of instilling transparency and accountability in the functioning of officers and employees across all 74 departments in the state.
  • The Information Technology, Electronics and Communications (ITE&C) Department of the Government of Telangana has joined hands with United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) to implement the UNESCO Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence (AI) by signing a Letter of Intent to drive efforts and action.
  • Tata Capital, a prominent financial services entity under the Tata Group, has announced the selection of Shubman Gill, a promising young cricket talent, as its brand ambassador.
  • The Indian Air Force (IAF) is set to host a significant multilateral military exercise named ‘Tarang Shakti’ in 2024.
  • During a conference commemorating Defence Industry Day, Iran’s Defence Ministry unveiled its new domestically built drone named Mohajer-10 , resembling America’s armed MQ-9 Reaper.
  • The Ministry of Jal Shakti released the report on the sixth census on minor irrigation schemes
  • Indian women’s visually impaired team won the T-20 final of the International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) World Games at Birmingham
  • Renowned lyricist and poet Dev Kohli Passed away at the age of 80 in Mumbai, Maharashtra.
  • Mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin, who led a brief armed rebellion against Russia’s military leadership in June, was killed in a plane crash.

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