23rd February 2023
AIIMS to partner with IITs and IIMs to make intersectoral learning accessible
Some active measures are also being planned to promote entrepreneurship in AIIMS actively.
Current Affairs: On Wednesday, Dr. M Srinivas, AIIMS Director, said that, AIIMs is planning collaboration with institutions like IITs, IIMs, ISB. These collaborations are being made with an aim of making learning more accessible with corporations like McKinsey, BCG, Bain, etc. to provide students with some exposure to the world of management, something outside the routine medical education, patient care and research.
“Undersigned is glad to announce institutional collaborations to provide students with some exposure to the world of management, something outside the routine medical education, patient care and research.”
“The statement further added that ‘Start-Up policy’ for students is also intended to be drafted.”
“Some active measures are also being planned to promote entrepreneurship in AIIMS actively. The ‘Start-Up policy’ for students is also intended to be drafted.”
“To facilitate the conversation on this, a meeting is scheduled with the undersigned on Sunday, February 26, 2023, at 8 AM in the committee room. Interested students and residents are requested to attend the meeting with the undersigned.”
All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) is a group of government public medical universities of higher education under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. These institutes have been declared as Institutes of National Importance by an Act of Parliament. It was founded in 1956 to serve as a nucleus for nurturing excellence in all aspects of health care. Its present director is Dr. M Srinivas and it is headquartered in Ansari Nagar, New Delhi.
About Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
Minister- Shri Mansukh L. Mandaviya.
NTPC ranked as the top Independent Power Producers and Energy Traders Globally by S&P Platts
NTPC limited is India’s largest power generating company.
NTPC has been ranked as No.1 Independent Power Producers and Energy Traders Globally in the S&P Global Commodity Insights Top 250 Global Energy Company Rankings 2022. NTPC is India’s largest power generating company and these rankings are based on four key metrics- asset worth, revenues, profits and return on investment.
About NTPC and its contributions
- NTPC is one of the key pillars in sustaining India’s economic growth and development.
- It has the installed capacity of 17% and it contributes 24% of the total electricity produced in India.
- Its goal is to deliver power that is economical, efficient and ecologically sustainable and it offers a diversified energy mix comprising gas, wind, solar, hydro, floating solar and coal.
- Target- It is targeting non-fossil fuel-based capacity to make up nearly 50% of the company’s portfolio, which includes renewable energy capacity of 60 GW and total portfolio of 130GW.
- It leads the Indi’s energy transition and has also teamed up with NITI Aayog for the Net Energy Zero effort.
About NITI Aayog
The NITI Aayog is the apex public policy of the Government of India, and the nodal agency tasked with economic development and fostering cooperative federalism through the involvement of State Governments of India in the economic policy-making. The Chairperson of the NITI AAYOG is PM Modi and the Chief Executive Officer is Parameswaran Iyer.
First meeting of G20 Culture Working Group begins in Khajuraho, Madhya Pradesh
Four working group sessions with participation from member countries and international organizations are planned for the meet
At Khajuraho, Madhya Pradesh, the first G20 Cultural Working Group (CWG) meeting of Culture will begin from tomorrow. The CWG is scheduled to be organized from 22nd to 25th February.
About first G20 Working Group (CWG)
- An exhibition titled “Return of Treasures” will be inaugurated by G.K Reddy- the Union Minister for Culture, Tourism and DoNER, Shivraj Singh Chauhan- Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Dr. Virendra Kumar- Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment, Meenakshi Lekhi- Minister of State for Culture.
- The delegates will be welcomed with folk performances – Badhai and Rai, and then will be provided traditional arts and cultural experience and will also participate in DIY activities like papier mache, block printing, henna art.
- Padam Shri Nek Ram who is also known as the Millet man has also been invited to celebrate the International Year of Millets (IYM), 2023.
- The delegates will visit the Western Group of Temples, UNESCO’s World Heritage Site and Panna Tiger Reserve.
- G20 Culture working group sessions are planned in which G20 member states, international organizations and officials from the Ministry of Culture will participate.
Statement of Joint Secretary
The Joint Secretary Lily Pandeya has said that-
“Four Culture Working Group meetings at Khajuraho, Hampi, Bhubaneswar, Varanasi are being organised under India’s G20 presidency. The theme of G20 this year is “Vasudev Kutumbakam”- One Earth · One Family · One Future’.”
Hosts of TROIKA
- For the year 2022- Indonesia
- For the year 2023- India
- For the year 2024- Brazil
Sherpa- Amitabh Kant
Chairman- P.M. Narendra Modi
Coordinator- Harshvardhan Shringla
Click here to read more on NTPC to host the G20 International Seminar.
Click here to read more on G20 Energy Transition Working Group Meeting.
CM Manohar Lal Khattar presents Haryana Budget 2023-24
CM Manohar Lal Khattar presents Haryana Budget 2023-24
no any new tax imposed
Today, the Haryana CM presents budget 2023-24. A budget is a financial document used to project future income and expenses. To put it simply, a budget plans future saving and spending as well as planned income and expenses.
Eventually the state budget is estimated receipts and expenditure of the State for a financial year.
Who presents Haryana Budget 2023-24:
Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who also holds the Finance portfolio, presented the Budget 2023-24 today. Mr Khattar proposed Rs 1.83 lakh crore state budget for the Financial Year 2023-24.
CM Khattar opinion on this budget:
No fresh tax will be imposed. Before presenting the Budget, he had held a series of pre-Budget consultation meetings with an aim to ensure that every key suggestion shared by the stakeholders are incorporated.
These meetings have been a key of the Khattar government before every Budget for the last three years.
Earlier, Mr Khattar had said that the Budget will focus on the welfare of all with specific attention towards the rural, environment, healthcare and education sectors.
On the lines of the Union Budget, Haryana’s Budget will be aimed at the holistic development of the state bringing Antyodaya into the mainstream.
What is provided in this budget:
The Chief Minister promised to provide,
- Jobs in various posts.
- Recommendations of the sixth pay commission (for employees) shall be implemented.
- Biogas plants will be opened in each district of Haryana and a heli-hub shall be constructed in Gurgaon.
- E-libraries shall be set up in rural areas.
- Parks and gymnasiums shall be opened in gram panchayats.
- Investment in Agriculture, Rural Development, Health and Education for comprehensive socio-economic growth of the State.
- Special emphasis has been given to boost capital investment.The Government’s Revenue Receipts are anticipated to increase.
- Three new metro links have been proposed.
- Free coaching for competitive examinations and said that two new schools shall be opened in each block under the PM Shri Yojana.
- 700 – bed multispeciality hospital will be set up in Gurgaon and nursing and paramedical colleges will be established in 11 districts.
- The old-age pension will also be increased.
- Hi-tech Veterinary dispensaries will be established in Gurgaon
- Training in data analytics, artificial intelligence to youngsters shall be imparted in consultation with the IT companies.
- Budget shall also be increased. For encouraging youngsters to launch start-ups.
Presents budget 2023-24
By: Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar
Haryana capital: Chandigarh
Namami Gange Executive Committee approves 9 projects worth Rs. 1,278 Crore for pollution abatement
The Namami Gange Programme is a flagship initiative of the Union Government and was implemented by the National Mission for Clean Ganga.
On Wednesday, the National Mission for Clean Ganga held the 47th meeting of the Executive Committee under the chairmanship of Director General, G. Asok Kumar. In the meeting, about 9 projects were approved worth Rs. 1,278 Crore. As per the press release by the Ministry of Jal Shakti, 7 out of 9 projects pertain to abatement of pollution in the Ganga Basin and 2 of the projects were for ghat development.
Projects approved by the National Mission for Clean Ganga
- A project in West Bengal worth Rs. 123.02 Crores for the creation of a 13 MLD STP and a 300 KLD decentralized STP at Chakdaha Municipal Town.
- 3 Projects worth Rs. 422 Crores for intercept and divert 13 drains by augmenting treatment capacity of Salori STP by 43 MLD in Prayagraj.
- A project worth Rs. 95.47 Crores in Uttar Pradesh for the rejuvenation of River Kali East by the development of an in-situ Constructed Wetland System at 8 locations.
- A project worth Rs.2.84 Crores for Nageshwar Dham Ashram Ghar in Fatehpur.
- A project worth Rs. 94.12 Crores for the development of two Sewage Treatment Plants for pollution abatement in River Ganga for Lakhisarai town in Bihar.
- A project worth Rs.10.04 Crore for ghat development in Bihar, one project for the development of Atal Ghar Manjhi, Saran, Bihar.
- A project worth Rs 511.15 Crores was approved to abate pollution in Rivers Kahn and Saraswati in Indore.
- A Project worth Rs 114.42 Crores For the monitoring of industrial pollution, a project titled ‘Pollution Inventorization, Assessment and Surveillance on River Ganga Basin (PIAS) piloted by Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).
- A project worth Rs. 1.9 Crores for a project titled ‘Survey, Investigation for Rejuvenation and Conservation of Shahdara Drain with nature-based treatment – Soil Biotechnology (SBT).
Members attended the 47th meeting of the Executive Committee of NMCG
- Himansu Badoni, Executive Director (Projects),
- NMCG, S.P. Vashishtha, Executive Director (Admin.),
- NMCG, Bhaskar Dasgupta, Executive Director (Finance),
- NMCG, D.P. Mathuria,
- Executive Director (Technical),
- Richa Misra,
- Joint Secretary and Financial Advisor,
- The Department of Water Resources,
- River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation,
- The Ministry of Jal Shakti.
About National Mission for Clean Ganga
The Namami Gange Programme is an initiative of the Union Government which has two objectives i.e. conservation and rejuvenation of Ganga. It was implemented by the National Mission for Clean Ganga. It was inaugurated in June 2014, with a budget of Rs. 20,000 (US$ 2.7 billion).
The three-day-long Asia Economic Dialogue is being held in Pune
Speakers from more than 44 countries will take part in this annual flagship event.
The Ministry of External Affairs is organising yet another edition of the Asia Economic Dialogue in Pune. It’s the annual flagship event on Geoeconomics, which began today in Pune, Maharashtra. The event is co-hosted by the Ministry of External Affairs and the Pune International Centre (PIC). The main theme for this year is “Asia and the Emerging World Order”. Apart from the main theme several sub-themes will gather the attention such as “How the Global South Will Shape the G20 Agenda and the Metaverse and Growth Prospects.”
This event becomes more critical owing to the fact that India has taken the mantle of G-20 this year.
The inaugural Session witnessed opening dialogues by external affairs ministers of India, Bhutan, and Maldives. This is the 7th edition of Asia economic dialogue, it will be attended by speakers from 44 countries including the UK, US, Singapore and many others. The event will continue for three days till February 25.
Significance of this Dialogue
Asia is home to 4.7 billion people which accounts for 60% of the world’s population. According to the IMF, Asia is one of the fast-growing markets in recent days. The major consumers in the world in Asia. Therefore, it may be difficult for any country to increase its trade market without having Asia. The impetus for this can be given to the ever-developing economy and attractive markets.
Ministry of External Affairs
The Ministry of External Affairs of India is the government agency responsible for implementing Indian foreign policy. It is headed by the Minister of External Affairs, a Cabinet Minister. It was founded on 2nd September 1946 and presently the external affairs minister is Mr. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar. The Ministry is the cadre-controlling authority of the Indian Foreign Service.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman meets US Treasury Secretary Jenet L Yellen in Bengaluru
Exchange views on G20 Finance Track priorities under India’s G20 Presidency
The G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting (FMCBG) is set to commence tomorrow in Bengaluru. According to a tweet by the Ministry of Finance, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman met with US Treasury Secretary Jenet L Yellen and Italian Minister of Economy and Finance Giancarlo Giorgetti today ahead of the first G20 FMCBG meeting.
The two leaders exchanged views on G20 Finance Track priorities under G20 India Presidency. The Italian minister extended his full support for a successful G20 India Presidency.
Side Events Organized Ahead of G20 Finance Ministers Meeting
- Before the two-day event begins, several side events are being organized today.
- In the morning, Central Bank deputies discussed the Road to Policy Consensus on Crypto Assets and Policy Perspectives.
- Later, a ministerial-level symposium on digital public infrastructure took place.
- In the afternoon, a Central Bank Deputies level discussion will be held on leveraging national payment systems to enhance cross-border arrangements.
- Around 500 foreign delegates, including finance ministers and central bank governors of G20 and invitee countries and heads of various international organisations, have gathered in Bengaluru for the first G20 FMCBG meeting.
Sitharaman’s Bilateral Discussions with Other Countries
- During the event, the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will hold bilateral discussions with more than 10 countries, including Italy, the US, Spain, Indonesia, and the UK, besides engaging in discussions with the representatives of international organizations.
- On Thursday, Sitharaman met US Treasury Secretary Janet L Yellen ahead of the first G20 FMCBG meeting under the G20 Indian Presidency.
- The two leaders exchanged views on G20 Finance Track priorities under G20 India Presidency in 2023.
- The Italian Minister of Economy and Finance Giancarlo Giorgetti also met Sitharaman in Bengaluru today, and he extended his full support for a successful G20 India Presidency in 2023.
US Treasury Secretary Yellen’s Agenda for the G20 Meeting
- At the G20 in India, Yellen will join allies in holding Russia accountable for its illegal invasion of Ukraine and partner with countries to mitigate the spillover effects of the war, according to a statement from the US Department of the Treasury.
- The statement also said that Yellen would discuss the resilience of the US and the global economy in the face of headwinds, including Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, and highlight key priorities for the Treasury during the G20.
- This includes:
- work to galvanize greater support and ambition in meeting global emissions reductions,
- building urgency and
- a broad coalition behind the need to evolve multilateral development banks, and
- underscoring the importance of delivering on the Common Framework to provide debt relief.
Yellen and Sitharaman Forge G20 Cooperation on Health, Finance, and Development
- During her meeting with Finance Minister of India Nirmala Sitharaman, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen reiterated the United States support for India’s G20 presidency and expressed gratitude for the hospitality received.
- Secretary Yellen discussed the need for cooperation on the development of multilateral development banks and stressed the importance of strengthened health-finance coordination.
- She also appreciated India’s leadership role in promoting sovereign debt restructuring and encouraged the G20 to take faster action on existing debt restructuring cases.
India has proven all naysayers wrong: Bill Gates sings praise on India’s ‘world-leading approach to innovation
India has proven all naysayers wrong: Bill Gates sings praise on India’s ‘world-leading approach to innovation’
Things have advanced in India
The Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates explains how India has managed to develop a “world-leading approach to innovation”.As he goes back to India, he is excited to see how far things have advanced.Gates believes that it is capable of making progress on many major problems at once with the correct technologies.
Views of Bills Gates:
“There is no better proof than the remarkable progress that India has accomplished,” Gates wrote.
“There is no better proof than the remarkable progress that India has accomplished,” Gates wrote.
“India as a whole gives me hope for the future,” Microsoft co-founder BIll Gates has said while mentioning that the country has managed to “tackle big challenges”.
What is India’s ‘world-leading approach to innovation’:
In India, all the necessary resources are not available at the moment to address issues like climate change, hunger and health, according to Gates. But, because of creative thinkers like those at the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), Gates believes that such problems can be solved.
What are the areas where Gates visited in India:
Gates visited areas that are home to one of the most underprivileged and underserved castes in India frequently throughout the years and examined toilets. But, he hasn’t been back since before the pandemic. As he goes back to India, he is excited to see how far things have advanced.
Gates during his 2012 trip to India:
Even in a time when the world is confronting multiple crises, Gates believes that it is capable of making progress on many major problems at once with the correct technologies and delivery channels.“world-leading approach to innovation”. India chose to produce its own rotavirus vaccine after the vaccine had become too expensive to be distributed to all children. The vaccine protects against the virus that frequently results in fatal instances of diarrhoea.
About Bill Gates:
- American business magnate, author, investor, and philanthropist.
- Co-founder of Microsoft
- Born October 28, 1955ṁ
- Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (2005)
- Padma Bhushan Ribbon.svg Padma Bhushan (2015)
- Presidential Medal of Freedom (ribbon).svg Presidential Medal of Freedom (2016)
- Hilal-e-Pakistan Breast Star.png Hilal-e-Pakistan
China, Japan square off at first security talks in four years
The aim for holding these security talks in between China and Japan is for easing tension between both the countries
On Wednesday, China and Japan held the first formal security talks in four years. Chain said- “It was troubled by Japan’s military build-up and Tokyo took aim at Beijing’s military ties to Russia and its suspected use of spy balloons in the Asian powers.”
Aim of the security talks
The aim for holding these security talks in between China and Japan is for easing tension between the world’s second and third-largest economies.
The talks, aimed at easing tensions between the world’s second and third-largest economies, came as Tokyo worries that Beijing will resort to force to take control of Taiwan in the wake of Russia’s attack on Ukraine, sparking a conflict that could embroil Japan and disrupt global trade.
Statement from Japan
“It would double defence spending over the next five years to 2% of gross domestic product – a total of $320 billion – to deter China from resorting to military action. Beijing, which increased defence spending by 7.1% last year, spends more than four times as much as Japan on its forces.”
Statement from Chinese Vice Foreign Minister
Sun Weidong, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister has said that-
“The international security situation has undergone vast changes and we are seeing the return of unilateralism, protectionism, and a Cold War mentality.”
“In the face of a current complex and volatile international and regional situation, the importance of Sino-Japanese relations has not changed, and will not change.”
“China and Japan should “deal with differences appropriately” to ensure that relations “do not stagnate, do not go off course, do not regress, and move steadily along the right track.”
“Taiwan is among important issues related to basic trust between both countries, and hopes Japan can learn from history, be consistent, adhere to the path of peaceful development and the ‘one-China’ principle.”
Statement of Japanese Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs
The Japanese Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Shigeo Yamada has said that-
“While relations between Japan and China have a lot of possibilities, we are also facing many issues and concerns.”
“It has also stressed the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.”
Discussion during the meeting
Both the countries have discussed
- Their territorial dispute over uninhabited islands in the East China Sea known as the Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China,
- Beijing’s recent joint military drills with Moscow and
- The suspected Chinese surveillance balloons have been spotted over Japan at least three times since 2019.
- The two countries had agreed to try and establish a direct communication hotline “around spring.”
Statement from Japan
“Japan last week said it planned to clarify military engagement rules to allow its jet fighters to shoot down unmanned aircraft that violate its airspace.”
Relationship between India and China
Both the countries have maintained peaceful relations for thousands of years as per the recorded history and the harmony of their relationship has varied, after the Chinese Communist Party’s victory in the Chinese Civil War in 1949.
India- Japan Relationship
The friendship between both the countries have a long history related to spiritual affinity and strong cultural and civilizational ties. Both the countries share a global vision of peace, stability and shared prosperity, based on sustainable development. Both India and Japan shared democratic values and commitment to human rights, pluralism, open society, and the rule of law underpin the global partnership between the two countries.
Prime Minister- Fumio Kishida
Currency- The Japanese Yen
President- Xi Jinping
World Bank President Commends India On Maintaining Solid Growth Amid Global Slowdown
President Malpass and Prime Minister Modi discussed India in “Amrit Kaal” and the goal to achieve and sustain 8 per cent growth as India approaches the 100th anniversary of its independence in 2047.
Current Affairs: During his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, World Bank Group President David Malpass praised India for maintaining solid growth amidst the global economic slowdown. He encouraged India to continue improving its business-enabling environment and advancing its energy transition.
Discussion on India’s economic growth and competitiveness
- President Malpass and Prime Minister Modi discussed India’s progress towards achieving and sustaining 8% growth as the country approaches its 100th independence anniversary in 2047.
- They also talked about the importance of increasing private sector investment, commercial credit growth, and building competitiveness in global value chains.
Encouraging foreign investment and supporting small farmers
President Malpass encouraged expanded capital markets and more pathways for de-listing companies as steps to attract large new inflows of foreign direct investment. They also discussed the role and cost of various subsidies and the importance of targeted support for small farmers and vulnerable sectors.
World Bank’s support for India’s development goals
- Malpass expressed the World Bank Group’s support for increased female labour force participation, expanded infrastructure, green finance, sustainable agriculture, and renewable energy.
- They also discussed agricultural policies that could increase efficiency and crop yields while better utilizing scarce water and electricity resources, and the LiFE initiative for environmental awareness around the world.
Discussion on India’s priorities at the G-20 summit
Looking ahead to the G-20 summit hosted by the Indian government, Malpass and Modi discussed:
- India’s priorities,
- action on debt for low-income countries and vulnerable middle-income countries, and
- the role and evolution of international finance institutions.
India’s G20 Presidency and the Final Summit
- India holds the Presidency of the G20 from December 1, 2022, to November 30, 2023, and will be hosting the final New Delhi Summit in September 2023.
- This summit will be the largest ever in the G20 history, with 43 Heads of Delegations participating.
- The G20 Logo, inspired by India’s national flag and the national flower, showcases the country’s pro-planet approach to life, in perfect harmony with nature.
The theme of India’s G20 Presidency
- The theme of India’s G20 Presidency is “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” or “One Earth · One Family · One Future”. This theme is drawn from the ancient Sanskrit text of the Maha Upanishad and highlights the value of all life on Earth and their interconnectedness in the wider universe.
- The theme also emphasizes the importance of environmentally sustainable and responsible choices, at both individual and national levels, leading to transformative actions resulting in a cleaner, greener, and bluer future.
- India’s G20 Presidency also marks the beginning of “Amritkaal,” the 25 years leading up to the centenary of its independence in 2047, towards a futuristic, inclusive, and developed society that puts a human-centric approach at its core.
AIADMK leadership row | Supreme Court restores Palaniswami as party’s single leader
A Bench, led by Hon’ble Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, pronounced the verdict on Thursday in a batch of cross petitions concerning amendments made to the party bylaws
Current Affairs: Today, the Supreme Court has affirmed the decision of the Madras High Court which set aside an earlier Order of August 17, 2022 which was in favour of O Panneerselvam. The decision of the High Court has restored Edappadi K Palaniswami as EPS, as the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) party’s single leader.
Statement of K Palaniswami
“The party election to the post of general secretary would not be conducted until the tussle between him and Mr. Panneerselvam over the leadership was decided by the Court.”
About the Court hearings on AIADMK leadership row
- In a batch of cross petitions concerning amendments made to the party bylaws during general council meeting, Hon’ble Justice Dinesh Maheshwari pronounced the verdict and the verdict was reserved after extensive hearing on January 11, 2023.
- In a decision dated 2 September, 2022, passed by a Division Bench of Madras High Court, has set aside an Order passed by a single Judge on August 17 in favour of Panneerselvam and has also allowed the appeals challenging the verdict of nullifying the party’s July 11, 2022 general council meeting.
- The court has made its interim Order absolute and stayed the Madras High Court’s Order dated June 23,2022. In the Order passed by the High court on June 23, 2022, the court had restrained the AIADMK general council from passing any resolutions.
Against the September 2, 2022 Order passed by a division bench of the Madras High Court, a division bench comprising Hon’ble Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice Hrishikesh Roy dismissed the petition filed by O Panneerselvam, today.
Argument of the OPS lawyer
The OPS lawyer argued in favour of restoration of the single bench Order and stated that-
“It was passed in accordance with the by-laws of the party, which mandate joint consent of OPS and EPS for convening general council meetings.”
Argument of the EPS lawyer
The EPS lawyer argued that-
“The High Court cannot interfere with the internal decisions of a political party which have been taken in a general council meeting.”
About Supreme Court
The 50th Chief Justice of India is Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud was appointed on 9th November 2022.
Awards and Recognition
After gap of four years Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards.
The President Droupadi Murmu presented the awards to over 100 eminent artists.
The President presented the Sangeet Natak Akademi’s Fellowships (Akademi Ratna) and Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards (Akademi Puruskar) for the year 2019, 2020 and 2021 in New Delhi today. The President said that in our tradition, art is a spiritual practice, a medium of search for the truth, a medium of prayer and worship, a medium of public welfare.
The President conferred academy awards after a gap of four years. National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama last year unanimously elected 10 eminent personalities for performing arts as Akademi Fellows. The Council also selected one hundred and twenty-eight (128) artists from the field of music, dance, puppetry, and theatre including folk and tribal, for the honour thus clearing the backlog for three years.
Art plays a very important role in creating India’s soft power. It is the embedded heritage that’s revealed only through culture, the president remarked while giving away the awards.
Sangeet Natak Akademi
Sangeet Natak Akademi (The National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama in English) is the national level academy for performing arts. It was established by Education Ministery in 1952, the first chairman was Dr. P. V. Rajamannar. It is headquartered in Delhi and currently its chairman is Sandhya Purecha.
Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships
It is an Indian honour for the performing arts presented by Sangeet Natak Akademi. The winner was Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar.
President of India
The president of India is the head of state of the Republic of India. The power and institution of President is given under Article 53 of the constitution. He/she is a nominal head of the executive and the first citizen of the country. Also, the commander-in-chief of the Indian Armed Forces. Droupadi Murmu is the 15th and current president, having taken office from 25 July 2022. She is the first President to be born after independence. Droupadi Murmu is the first tribal lady to become the president of India. She was born to a Santhal family in Odisha.
Sansad Ratna Awards- 2023
13 members of Parliament (MP) have been nominated for the Sansad Ratna Awards 2023.
Today, PM Modi has congratulated fellow members of Parliament who will be receiving the Sansad Ratna Awards 2023 and said- “May they keep enriching parliamentary proceedings with their rich insights.”
Reason for presenting the award
The Sansad Ratna award has been given for facilitating and recognition for their outstanding cumulative performance from the beginning of the 17th Lok Sabha until the end of Winter Session of 2022.
About Sansad Ratna Awards
- These awards were instituted in 2010 and it was inspired by the teachings of former President APJ Abdul Kalam.
- APJ Abdul Kalam has first launched the Award function in Chennai.
- These awards were launched to facilitate and recognize the top-performing MPs on the basis of their work.
Winners of the Sansad Awards-2023
The awardees for the Sansad Awards 2023 are-
- Bidyut Baran Mahato (BJP, Jharkhand),
- Sukanta Majumdar (BJP, West Bengal),
- Kuldeep Rai Sharma (INC, Andaman Nicobar Islands),
- Heena Vijayakumar Gavit (BJP, Maharashtra),
- Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury (INC, West Bengal),
- Gopal Chinayya Shetty (BJP, Maharashtra),
- Sudhir Gupta (BJP, Madhya Pradesh), and
- Amol Ramsing Kolhe (NCP, Maharashtra) from the Lok Sabha.
From the Rajya Sabha-
- John Brittas (CPI-M, Kerala),
- Manoj Kumar Jha (RJD, Bihar),
- Fauzia Tahseen Ahmed Khan (NCP, Maharashtra),
- Vishambhar Prasad Nishad (Samajwadi Party, UP) and
- Chhaya Verma (INC, Chhattisgarh) will be given the Sansad Ratna award.
Other Awardees Nominated for outstanding Cumulative performance-
The Finance Committee (Lok Sabha, under BJP’s Jayant Sinha) and
- Transport, Tourism and Culture Committee (Rajya Sabha, under YSR Congress’s V Vijay Sai Reddy).
Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam LifeTime Achievement Award
- T K Rangarajan (former Rajya Sabha MP for two terms and a Senior CPIM Leader) for his contribution to “Parliament and Indian people”.
Jury and criteria of Choosing the winners
About the Jury-
The awardees has been chosen by its jury committee comprises-
- Eminent Parliamentarians and members of civil society.
- The committee was chaired by Arjun Ram Meghwal (MoS, Parliamentary Affairs) and Co-chaired by T S Krishnamurthy (Former Chief Election Commissioner of India).
The nominations have been based on the MP’s performance in Parliament from the beginning of the Lok Sabha until the end of Winter Session. The factors on which the decision of the jury is based on are-
- Questions asked,
- Private members’ Bills introduced,
- Debates initiated,
- Funds utilised, etc.
About the organisation instituted the Sansad Ratna Award
- These awards are not given by the Government of India and were introduced by K Srinivasan.
- K Srinivasan was a communist strategist who founded the Prime Point Foundation in 1999.
- Prime Point Foundation is the organisation which runs the awards show with the support from IIT Madras.
24th February 2023
First G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting begins in Bengaluru
The Finance Track is at the core of the G20 process and provides an effective forum for global economic discourse and policy coordination.
Current Affairs : The First G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting is scheduled for 24th-25th February, 2023, in Bengaluru, Karnataka. It will be co-chaired by Mr. Ajay Seth and Dr. Michael D. Patra, Deputy Governor, RBI.
Statement of the Minister
“The Finance Track is at the core of the G20 process and provides an effective forum for global economic discourse and policy coordination. Main workstreams in Finance Track are global economic outlook and risks, international financial architecture including development finance and global financial safety net, financial inclusion and other financial sector issues, infrastructure development and financing, sustainable finance, global health financing and international taxation.”
- PM Modi received the baton for the Presidency of G20 in November 2022 from Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo.
- Aim- G-20 aim is to continue to bridge differences and forge consensus on matters of global importance.
- Importance and priorities of the G-20 Presidency are to focus on healing our One Earth, creating harmony within our One Family and giving hope for our One Future.
- Theme- The Theme reflects the India priorities and importance India places on collaborative efforts to address global challenges.
Challenges the Global economies are facing
- After effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Food and energy insecurity,
- Broad-based inflation,
- Heightened debt vulnerabilities,
- Worsening climate change
- Geopolitical tensions.
Statement of Shri Thakur
“The G20 can make a significant contribution to find pragmatic global solutions to these challenges through focused dialogue and deliberations and the Indian Presidency seeks to actively facilitate this.”
“Towards fulfilling this goal, the G20 Finance Track discussions in 2023 will include strengthening Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) to meet the shared global challenges of the 21st century, financing ‘cities of tomorrow’, leveraging digital public infrastructure for financial inclusion and productivity gains and advancing the international taxation agenda, among others. The various work streams in G20 have already initiated work on these key issues.”
He also highlighted the need to aspire to the spirit of multilateralism and said that-
“There are contentious issues, and the countries need to balance their domestic aspirations. Through these constructive and productive discussions, we can collectively achieve optimal outcomes.”
About Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting
This meeting is organized for-
- The finalization of the Communique and it will be endorsed by the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors during the meeting.
- This Communique embodies the collective view of the G20 on the most pressing issues affecting the global economy and directly connects the larger international community with the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors of the major global economies.
- The consensus among the G20 countries on coordinated solutions to key global problems can help the global economy recover from the current slowdown and create new opportunities for growth and prosperity.
Click here to read more on G20.
Click here to read more on NTPC to host the G20 International Seminar.
Click here to read more on G20 Energy Transition Working Group Meeting.
NSE Indices launches India’s first Municipal Bond Index
Current Affairs: NSE Indices Limited, a subsidiary of the National Stock Exchange (NSE), announced the launch of the Nifty India Municipal Bond Index.
The index is the first of its kind in India and tracks the performance of municipal bonds issued by Indian municipal corporations. It was launched during a workshop on Municipal Debt Securities held by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) in Bengaluru.
Municipal Bond Index Constituents
- The Nifty India Municipal Bond Index includes municipal bonds issued in compliance with the Securities Exchange Board of India Issue and Listing of Municipal Debt Securities Regulations, 2015.
- Presently, the index comprises 28 municipal bonds issued by 10 issuers, all of which have a credit rating in the AA rating category.
- The index constituents are assigned weights based on their outstanding amount.
Total Return Methodology
- The index is computed using the total return methodology, which includes both price return and coupon return.
- It has a base date of January 01, 2021, and a base value of 1000, which will be reviewed quarterly.
- Asset managers are expected to use the Nifty India Municipal Bond Index as a benchmark and as a reference index tracked by passive funds, such as Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), index funds, and structured products.
Municipal Bond Market Potential
- According to Mr Mukesh Agarwal, CEO of NSE Indices, the municipal bond market has the potential to play a pivotal role in financing the borrowing requirements of different municipal corporations in India.
- By financing growth-driven infrastructure projects, municipal corporations can expand essential municipal services and contribute to bridging India’s urban infrastructure financing gap.
- Agarwal is confident that the launch of the Nifty India Municipal Bond Index will create an impetus for asset managers to invest in the municipal bond market, providing a new investment vehicle for fixed-income investors.
The National Stock Exchange of India
- The National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) is the leading stock exchange in India, located in Mumbai.
- It was established in 1992 and has become the largest exchange in the country in terms of market capitalization.
- The NSE provides a platform for trading in equities, derivatives, currency, and debt securities.
- It is known for its modern, fully automated electronic trading system, which allows for fast and efficient trading.
- The exchange is regulated by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and has a wide range of investors, including institutional investors, retail investors, and foreign investors.
- Overall, the NSE plays a vital role in the growth of the Indian economy by providing a transparent and efficient marketplace for investors.
SEBI: The Watchdog of India’s Securities Market
- The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) is the regulatory body that oversees the securities market in India.
- It was established in 1988 as an independent authority to regulate and develop the securities market in India.
- SEBI’s main functions include:
- protecting the interests of investors,
- regulating stock exchanges and other intermediaries, and
- preventing fraudulent and unfair trade practices.
- It also works to promote transparency and efficiency in the securities market and to develop and enforce regulations to maintain the integrity of the market.
- Overall, SEBI plays a crucial role in ensuring that the Indian securities market operates in a fair, transparent, and efficient manner, thereby promoting investor confidence and protecting their interests.
The Gujarat government on Friday presented a Rs 3.01 lakh crore budget
This was the first budget of the new BJP government and the budget outlay was presented in the state assembly by the Gujarat Finance Minister Kanu Desai.
On Friday, the Gujarat government presented a Rs. 3.01 lakh crore budget with no new taxes imposed on people. This was the first budget of the new BJP government and the budget outlay was presented in the state assembly by the Gujarat Finance Minister Kanu Desai. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is headed by Chief Minister Bhupendra Desai and he assumed the office in December last year.
The Budget 2023-24
The Budget presented by the BJP Government for the FY 2023-24 was a part of the promises made by the BJP and is a part of the promises made by the BJP in its manifesto before the 2022 elections. The promises made are like:
- Doubling the insurance coverage under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya-MA (PMJAY-MA) scheme to Rs 10 lakh
- Providing two gas cylinders free per year to the beneficiaries of Ujjwala scheme.
Statements of the Finance Minister
Kanu Desai, the Finance Minister said that,
“Taking into consideration the revenue account with capital account and net public account, the estimates for the financial year 2023-24 show a surplus of Rs 916.87 crore.”
“In this ‘amrit kaal’, I present the budget which will determine the direction of the development of the state for the next 25 years.”
“For the year 2023-24, I propose a budgetary outlay of Rs 301,021 crore.”
“This shows a significant increase in the budgetary provisions, which is 23.38 per cent higher than the previous years.”
“The government aims to increase the state’s Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) beyond Rs 42 lakh crore.”
“No new taxes are being proposed in the budget.”
“During the pandemic, we had given relief to various sections of the society to the tune of Rs 1,000 crore by reducing various taxes.”
“The state government will spend around Rs 5 lakh crore on the development of infrastructure facilities in the next five years, he said. Five state highways will be developed as high speed corridors at Rs 1,500 crore investment.”
“The government also plans to set up sports complexes in each district and taluka of the state and adding that Rs 1,066 crore will be spent on providing houses to around one lakh people under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) during the next year.”
The Chief Minister of Gujarat is Bhupendrabhai Patel and its capital is Gandhinagar.
Union Health Ministry to organise two-day ‘Chintan Shivir’ with focus on drug quality regulation and enforcement
The Union Health and Family Welfare Minister, Dr Mansukh Mandaviya, will chair a two-day Chintan Shivir on Drug Quality Regulation and Enforcement in Hyderabad.
The Shivir will take place from February 26-27, 2023, at Shanti Vanam, and will include eminent speakers and domain experts from various sectors, including government, industry fora, startups, and academia.
Participants & Objective
- Senior officials from various government bodies, such as the Union Secretary for Health and officials from the National Health Authority, NPPA, CDSCO, NIB, Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission, NIPERs, and state functionaries, will also be present at the brainstorming conclave.
- The objective of the Shivir is to:
- review the processes and implementation of policies and programs related to drugs quality and
- enforcement in the country.
- Recommendations will be made to facilitate ease of doing business by reviewing predictability, transparency, and compliance with Indian drug standards and regulatory capacities across states and centres.
- Participants will also discuss global best practices and the introduction of newer interventions like digital tools and clinical trial standards.
- The ultimate goal is to create a multi-stakeholder approach for the benefit of common citizens.
- The conference will include five sessions, which will cover:
- building trust and confidence in the quality of drugs, cosmetics, and medical devices in domestic and export markets;
- effective enforcement at the field level;
- Indian pharmacopoeia and adherence to its standards;
- a unified IT intervention for all regulatory activities; and
- capacity building of state and national regulators.
- The sessions aim to create a brainstorming interaction with stakeholders to evolve a participative approach for the time-bound implementation of policies and programs.
- The Shivir will have panel discussions with eminent speakers and experts from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, NITI Aayog, industry fora, startups, academia, and other sectors, along with interactive sessions with the stakeholders.
Boeing plans to end production of ‘Top Gun’ Super Hornet plane in 2025
Production of the plane could be stretched out to 2027 if India places an order.
On Thursday, Boeing announced that it expects to end production of the “Top Gun” F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jet in late 2025 after the final delivery to the US Navy. The Super Hornet was featured in the 2022 movie “Top Gun: Maverick” starring Tom Cruise playing the role of a Navy pilot. The movie got positive reviews yet it was unable to save F/A-18 Super Hornet.
Statement of the Company
“Production of the plane could be stretched out to 2027 if India places an order.”
Reasons for ending the production
The Navy has decided not to buy any Super Hornets after the fall of 2021 and cited that the design of the plane is old.
Announcement by Boeing
The company has announced the ending of production after Boeing delivered the last iconic 747 Jumbo jet that has been used in passenger and cargo services.
Statement from the Boeing
“Ending F/A-18 production will let it focus on future military aircraft, both crewed and uncrewed, and increase production of other Defence programs.”
“It plans to build three new facilities in St. Louis, where the F/A-18s are assembled.”
“It will continue to develop upgrades to the current fleet of F/A-18 Super Hornets and EA-18G Growlers. The latter is a carrier-based electronic version of the jet.”
Statement of the Vice President of Boeing’s Air Dominance Division
The Vice President of Boeing’s Air Dominance Division, Steve Nordlund has said that
“We are planning for our future, and building fighter aircraft is in our DNA.”
- The first F/A-18 was launched in 1983 and was built by McDonnell Douglas. It was merged with Boeing in 1997.
- The company has delivered more than 2000 Hornets, Super Hornets and Growlers to the U.S. Military and the governments of many allied countries such as Canada, Finland, Australia and Malaysia.
Arrest Warrant issued against Pak Minister
Rana Sanaullah was reported threatening the Judiciary and other Public Officials
An arrest warrant has been issued by the Pakistan Anti-terrorist Court against Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah today. The arrest warrant was bailable. As per the Media reports, he had threatened the judiciary and prevented government officials from “fulfilling their lawful responsibilities” during his public speeches.
Today, an Anti-terrorism Court took up the case in Gujrat city in Punjab province. However, the case was registered last year in August. Now, the ATC Court directed law enforcement officials to arrest Sanaullah and present him before the court on March 7.
Rana Sanaullah is a senior member of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). He threatened to stop the judiciary from doing its job and kill the children of Punjab police officials during his public speeches last year and in 2021. These remarks were broadcasted previous year by several Pakistan’s private channels.
“The purpose of Sanaullah’s speeches was to terrorise the judiciary, chief secretary, commissioner, and the people of the country,” the FIR stated.
The judiciary of Pakistan is a hierarchical system with two classes of courts: the Supreme Court of Pakistan and the Federal Shariat Court and five High Courts, with the Supreme Court at the apex. Anti-Terrorism Court was established under the Nawaz Sharif government to look after terrorism.
Capital – Islamabad
Prime Minister – Shehbaz Sharif
Currency – Pakistan Rupee
Ajay Banga, nominated by Joe Biden to be next World Bank president
The Former President of the World Bank has resigned from the position as he has faced backlash.
On Thursday, the President of the US Joe Biden nominated ex-Mastercard CEO Ajay Banga to head the World Bank. The President of the US has announced the nomination and said about Ajay Banga that- He is “uniquely equipped to lead” the institution.
Statement of Joe Biden
“He has spent more than three decades building and managing successful, global companies that create jobs and bring investment to developing economies, and guiding organizations through periods of fundamental change. He has a proven track record managing people and systems, and partnering with global leaders around the world to deliver results.”
“Raised in India, Ajay has a unique perspective on the opportunities and challenges facing developing countries and how the World Bank can deliver on its ambitious agenda to reduce poverty and expand prosperity.”
Reasons for the nomination of Ajay Banga
The Former President of the World Bank has resigned from the position as he faced backlash and climate activists called for the resignation, as they were against what Malpass had said about the climate being an inadequate approach to the climate crisis.
About Ajay Banga and his achievements
- Ajay Bang was born in Pune on November 10,1959 and completed his school education at St. Edward’s School, Shimla and at the Hyderabad Public School, Hyderabad and then he studied Economics at St. Stephen’s College, Delhi.
- He completed his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (IIM-A).
- He started his career at Nestle and for 13 years, he worked in the sales, marketing and general management divisions of the company and later on he worked with Pepsico.
- He took the role of President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in 2010 and he assumed the responsibility at General Atlantic as Vice Chairman on January 1, 2022.
- From 2020-2022, he served as Chairman of the International Chamber of Commerce. He has also worked as Chairman of EXOR and has been an Independent Director at Temasek.
- He has been a Member of the Trilateral Commission, a Founding Trustee of the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum.
- He was awarded the Foreign Policy Association Medal in 2012,
- The Padma Shri Award by the President of India in 2016,
- The Ellis Island Medal of Honor and the Business Council for International Understanding’s Global Leadership Award in 2019,
- The Distinguished Friends of Singapore Public Service Star in 2021.
Click here to read more on Resignation of the President of the World Bank.
Biden to host G7 virtual meeting announce sweeping sanctions against Russia: White House
G-7 has become an anchor of strong and united response to Russia and during the meeting the leaders will discuss how they continue supporting Ukraine.
On Friday, the President of the U.S., would host a virtual meeting of leaders from G-7 nations, in which the Ukrainian President will also be present. The Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy can expect sweeping sanctions against Russia as its war against Ukraine enters the second year.
There are 7 major world economies in the G7-
- United Kingdom
- The United States
Statement from White House Press Secretary
The White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said that
“Tomorrow morning, President Biden will gather with G-7 leaders and President Zelenskyy for a virtual meeting to continue coordinating our efforts to support Ukraine and hold Russia accountable for its war.”
“Tokyo has proven a steadfast ally, ready to step up and do its part to advance their shared interests and values.”
“Our alliance with Japan and Japan’s strong partnerships with countries in Europe only demonstrate the point we’ve been making all along, the Indo-Pacific and the Atlantic are not separate theatres here, but firmly linked together.”
“The leaders will discuss how they continue supporting Ukraine and continue to increase pressure on Putin and all those who enable his aggression.”
“Among other announcements, the United States will implement sweeping sanctions against key sectors that generate revenue for Putin, go after more Russian banks, Russia’s defense and technology, industry and actors in third-party countries that are attempting to backfill and evade our sanctions.”
“As the President made clear in Europe this week, the United States will continue to stand with Ukraine for as long as it takes.”
Discussions during the virtual meeting
During the virtual meeting of G-7, the Biden Administration will announce
- new economic energy and security assistance to the Ukraine,
- To help succeed in battlefield and protect its people from Russian Aggression and
- Enable the Ukrainian Government to provide basic services such as electricity and heat.
Issues the U.S. Secretary of State will be addressing
During the U.N. Security Council, the U.S. Secretary of State, Tony Blinken will address-
- The imperative of supporting Ukraine and in support of a just and durable peace,
- A peace that’s consistent with the principles of the U.N. Charter and one that will equip Ukraine to,
- Over the longer term, it will continue to be a sovereign country, a democratic country, an independent country, a country that is whole and prosperous with the means to defend itself going forward.
Statement of Tony Blinken
“The last one year has seen not just an alliance, but a broader partnership that is strong, that is solid, that is standing up, providing the support to Ukraine, keeping the pressure on Russia, taking steps to strengthen our alliance.”
UNGA passes resolution calling for immediate end to hostilities between Ukraine and Russia, India abstains from voting on resolution
India continues to remain concerned over the situation in Ukraine.
The United Nations General Assembly has passed the resolution, calling for Russia to end the war and withdraw its forces from Ukraine. In the assembly 141 members voted in favour of the resolution while 7 members opposed it. The other 32 members abstained from voting on the resolution which includes India. From more than 75 countries, the Foreign ministers and diplomats have addressed the assembly. The assembly was held for two days and several countries urged support for the resolution that upholds Ukraine’s territorial integrity.
Statement of Permanent Representative of India
The Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations, Ruchira Kamboj has said that-
“India continues to remain concerned over the situation in Ukraine. The conflict led to the loss of countless lives and misery with millions becoming homeless and attacks on civilian infrastructure are deeply concerning.”
“Has the UN system and UNSC based on the 1945 world construct not been rendered ineffective to address contemporary challenges to global peace and security.”
“The global order that we all subscribe to, is based on International Law, the UN Charter and respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all states.”
“It is unfortunate that as the trajectory of the Ukrainian conflict unfolds, the entire Global South has suffered its unintended consequences.”
“It is thus critical that the voice of the global south be heard and their legitimate concerns be duly addressed.”
“India is providing both humanitarian assistance to Ukraine and economic support to some of its neighbors in the Global South under economic distress, even as they stare at the escalating costs of food, of fuel, and of fertilizers – which has been a consequential fall out of the ongoing conflict.”
“India upholds principles of UN charter and it will always call for dialogue and diplomacy as the only way out.”
About United Nations General Assembly
The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations. It works as the main deliberative, policymaking, and representative organ of the UN. It was founded in 1945 and is headquartered in New York. The Permanent Representative of India to the UN is Ruchira Kamboj.
Both the countries consider their relationship as a “special and privileged strategic partnership.” Both the countries have aligned interest in creating a multipolar world order instead of bipolar world with the decline of the American led unipolar world order.
Both the countries share a trade relation and economic co-operation which developed on the basis of long-standing friendship between the two countries. A treaty of friendship and cooperation was signed between India and Ukraine in March 1992, which boosted the trade relations between the two countries.
President- Vladimir Putin
Currency- Russian Ruble
President- Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Currency- Ukrainian Hryvnia
Appointment and Resignation
Aramane Giridhar gets extension as Defence Secretary
He took over the position of Defense Secretary on November 1, 2022.
On Thursday, As per a Personnel Ministry order, Aramane Giridhar, Defense Secretary was given an extension in service till the month of October next year.
About Aramane Giridhar
- He is a 1988 batch Indian Administrative Service officer (IAS) of the Andhra Pradesh Cadre.
- He took over the position of Defense Secretary on November 1, 2022.
- His retirement was due in June, 2023 after completing 60 years of superannuation.
Statement from Official Order
“The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the extension in service for a period up to 31.10.2024.”
Appointment of Aramane Giridhar
The Union Cabinet’s appointment committee has approved the extension of Secretary of Department of Defence and this extension is beyond Aramane’s age of superannuation.
About The Ministry of Defense
The Ministry of Defence works towards coordinating and supervising all agencies and functions of the government relating directly to national security and the Indian Armed Forces. The President of India is the ceremonial commander-in-chief of the armed forces of the country. Its Officeholder or Minister is Mr. Rajnath Singh.
SC refuses to entertain PIL for menstrual leave for women in schools and working women in workplaces.
SC refuses to entertain PIL for menstrual leave for women in schools and working women in workplaces.
The Petition is Dismissed regards to policy view .
Today, the Supreme Court of India refrained from entertaining a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking a directive to all the State Governments to frame rules for menstrual pain leaves to female students and working women at their respective workplaces.
What is PIL :
Article 32 of Constitution of India explained that Public Interest Litigation (PIL) can be filed in the court by anybody to secure rights of the public at large.
Why SC refuses to entertain PIL :
According to SC ,
The issue falls under the policy domain of the government
A bench headed by Hon’ble Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud said that a representation can be made to the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development for taking a decision.
Who filed the PIL
The petition, filed by Delhi resident Shailendra Mani Tripathi, has sought a direction to the Centre and all the States for compliance with the Maternity Benefit Act.
What is the plea:
The petition had said:
“Definitely even today also, in several organisations, including government organisations, these provisions are not being implemented in their true spirit and with the same legislative intent with which it was enacted but at the same time one of the biggest aspects of this whole issue or one of the very basic problems related to maternity which are faced by every woman has been completely ignored by the legislature in this very good law and also by the executive while making rules, specifically the leave rules,”
further added plea,
“Ironically, the most disappointing aspect in the direction of respecting the rights of working women, is that in spite of a provision under section 14 of the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, that there will be an inspector for a particular area to monitor the implementation of such great provisions, no government in India has created the post of inspectors, forget about the appointment of such inspectors.”
What bench including justices PS Narasimha and JB Pardiwala Said:
“Having regard to the policy views, it would be appropriate if the petitioner approaches the women and child development ministry. The petition is accordingly disposed of.
During the brief hearing, the bench found favour with the views of a lawyer.”
Dismissed by the Supreme Court on Friday
Filed by: Advocate Shailendra Mani Tripathi Under :Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 – Under Section 14.
External resources https://indiankanoon.org/doc/1811175/#:~:text=14.,their%20functions%20under%20this%20Act
All-India Taekwondo Championship at IG Stadium in New Delhi
On the occasion of Golden jubilee of India-Korea diplomatic relations, the two countries have come closer in the form of sports
A three-day All-India Taekwondo Championship has been inaugurated in New Delhi. The event was marked by the presence of the Sports Secretary and other officials. The championship is being organised to commemorate the 50th year of diplomatic ties between Korea and India and to revitalise Taekwondo that has been stagnant since the pandemic. It will also lay the foundation for the future as a major sports event between the two countries.
The Sports Authority of India (SAI) is co-hosting the event with Korean Cultural Centre India and Korea National Sports University. The officials at the event expressed hope that this sporting event will further strengthen the ties between the two countries. The event will be competed in two parts: Poomsae and Sparring called Kyorugi. The sparring, Kyorugi division is divided according to the competition rules of the World Taekwondo Federation in players`s age and weight and Poomsae division will be divided into men’s and women’s divisions only.
Sports Authority of India is the apex national level sports body. It was established by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports in 1984. It is headquartered in New Delhi. It has successfully implemented ‘Come and Play’ scheme wherein a large pool of players have been inducted into the relevant sports.
Taekwondo is the Korean Martial Arts that involves punching and kicking techniques, with emphasis on head-height kicks, spinning jump kicks, and fast kicking techniques. The physical training undertaken in Taekwondo is purposeful and fosters strength of mind through mental armament.
India- South Korea Relations
The bilateral ties between the two countries have grown robust and multi-dimensional, encompassing a wide range of interests, including nuclear disarmament, maritime security, regional economic cooperation, counterterrorism, and energy cooperation. Soft power such as Korean cuisine and K-pop have emerged as engaging points among several states in India.
Capital – Seoul
President – Yoon Suk-yeol
Currency – Korean Republic won
Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports of India – Mr. Anurag Thakur
Avani Prashanth became the first Indian golfer to win the Queen Sirikit Cup
Avani Prashanth, a 16-year-old prodigy from Bengaluru, made history on Friday by becoming the first Indian golfer to win the prestigious Queen Sirikit title. Her remarkable victory helped the Indian team finish second, their best-ever performance in the competition’s 43-year history. Avani won the title with a massive 10-stroke margin, pipping New Zealand’s Fiona Xu who finished six-under for the week.
Avani’s impressive performance secures India’s best-ever individual result
- India’s best individual result at the event before Friday was a T3 back in 2011.
- Local Filipino star, Rianne Mikhaela Malixi, and Korea’s Hyunjo Yoo were tied for third at a 5-under total.
- However, Avani’s consistent performance throughout the week earned her the top spot, holding a share of the lead from the very first day at the Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club, Philippines.
- She finished with rounds of 68-66-70 and played a brilliant back nine on the final day with four birdies in the last eight holes, including the closing 18th.
Indian team’s hopes of a maiden Queen Sirikit Cup title dashed
- India’s hopes of securing their first-ever Queen Sirikit Cup title were dashed on the final day when Nishna Patel found water with her approach and double-bogeyed the ninth and Vidhatri Urs took six at the par-four 10th. The Koreans were again four clear and went on to win by five.
- Nevertheless, it was a big boost for Indian amateur golf, and Avani’s outstanding performance is a source of inspiration for young Indian golfers.
How golf in India is shedding the label of “an elite old man’s sport”
Chikkarangappa, Aditi Ashok, and Rashid Khan
- Golf has a long history in India, predating the country’s independence from Britain in 1947. The British introduced golf to India in 1829, and soon after, golf clubs were established in different cities across the country.
- Despite its long history, golf has always been considered an expensive and exclusive to upper-class sport, which has limited its popularity in India. Also, most courses were challenging to access as they were either owned by private clubs or the Indian Army.
- However lately, India started achieving success in the game and the shining performances of Aditi Ashok who was on the verge of winning an Olympic medal at the Tokyo Olympics 2021 and the recent achievement of Avani Prashanth have changed the perception of golf in India considerably signalling a shift towards its inclusivity and accessibility for all.
Central Excise Day 2023, The day is observed to recognise the efforts of the Central Excise Customs
Central Excise Day 2023, The day is observed to recognise the efforts of the Central Excise Customs.
Also observed to commemorate the Central Excise Act
The Central Excise Day is celebrated in India every year on February 24 to commemorate the establishment of the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC). The day is observed to recognise the efforts of the Central Excise and Customs officials who work tirelessly to safeguard the country’s economy. The Central Excise Day is also observed to commemorate the Central Excise Act.
What is the History:
Every year to commemorate the establishment of the Central Excise and Salt Act in 1944. The act was enacted to regulate the manufacture and production of salt and excise duty on various goods produced or manufactured in India.
What are the responsibilities:
The Central Excise and Customs Department is responsible for collecting indirect taxes on goods and services in India. Also the imported goods. It ensures that these taxes are paid on time. All imports and exports comply with the regulations and laws enacted by the government.
What is the role of the department:
The department plays a significant role in maintaining the economic stability of the country. The day further serves as a reminder of the critical role that the department plays in supporting the country’s economy and promoting fair trade practices.
What is the purpose to celebrate the day:
The purpose of celebrating the day is also to inform the people of the country about the importance of the Central Board of Excise and Customs. Many programs are organised by the board on this day, including seminars, workshops, educational and cultural programmes, awareness programmes, competitions, and award ceremonies.
What is the relevance of the day:
The day is relevant because it highlights the importance of paying taxes. The role of the excise department in regulating the production and consumption of goods in India.
About Central Excise Day:
Celebrated in: February 24 every year
For: Mark the significance of department officer
25th February 2023
Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan to inaugurate New Delhi World Book Fair at Pragati Maidan
Several seminars, conferences, book releases, literary and cultural programmes and various business-to-business events will be held during the fair.
Current Affairs: Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan, the Union Minister will inaugurate the New Delhi World Book Fair. It is a 9 day fair and will be held at Pragati Maidan. There will be several literary and cultural activities organized focusing on the theme ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’.
About the New Delhi World Book Fair
- It is the 31st edition of the New Delhi World Book Fair.
- More than 2000 stalls will be set up
- More than 1000 book publishers will participate
- France has been invited as the Guest of Honor Country.
- Exhibitions of books will also be organized from G20 member countries during the fair.
- Several seminars, conferences, book releases, literary and cultural programmes and various business-to-business events will also be held on the sidelines of the book fair.
The theme of the fair is focusing on the theme Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav and is also integrated with the G20 theme.
Major attractions of the Fair
- G20 Pavilion,
- National Education Policy Pavilion,
- Ed-Tech Zone,
- YUVA author corner,
- Foreign Pavilion,
- Children’s Pavilion,
- Authors Corners and Lekhak Manch.
The Publications Division will showcase its-
- ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ books collection,
- Its premier Rashtrapati Bhavan series of books as well as speeches of Presidents, Vice Presidents and Prime Minister at the fair.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz hold talks with PM Modi today
Both the leaders will be discussing expanding the overall bilateral relations in a number of key areas in both the countries.
Today, Olaf Scholz, the German Chancellor, arrived in India for a two-day visit. The German Chancellor received a ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, where he met PM Modi and other top ministers. During the meeting the two leaders are expected to hold the discussions related to the Ukraine-Russia conflict, the situation in the Indo-Pacific Region and the ways to boost bilateral ties between India and Germany.
Statement of the German Chancellor
About the Discussion
Both the leaders were engaged in bilateral talks in Bali on November 16,2022 during the G20 Summit. During the present meeting the two leaders of India and Germany will hold discussion on the –
- The Russia-Ukraine war, which completed a year on Friday.
- They will also discuss expanding the overall bilateral relations in a number of key areas, including new technologies, clean energy and trade and investment.
Both the countries have bilateral relations and are founded on common democratic principles and are marked by a high degree of trust and mutual respect. India is amongst the first countries to establish diplomatic ties with the Federal Republic of Germany after the Second World War.
President- Frank Walter Steinmeier
Kerala becomes first state to use robotic scavengers to clean manholes
It is developed by the Genrobotics in order to eliminate manual scavenging.
On Friday, the Kerala Government launched a robotic scavenger, ‘Bandicoot’, to clean sewages in this temple town. Kerala has become the first state in the country to use robotic technology to clean all its commissioned manholes. Bandicoot has been launched by the Water Resource Minister, Roshi Augustine and it is launched under the Guruvayur Sewerage Project in Thrissur district by the Kerala Water Authority (KWA). This project is part of the 100-day action plan of the state government.
Statement of the Water Resource Minister
Roshi Augustine, Minister of Water Resources has said that-
“With the launch of the project in Guruvayur, manual scavenging in Kerala has ended. Now Kerala has become the first state in the country to use robotic scavengers to clean manholes.”
“It was a major step towards the use of technology-driven solutions for manhole cleaning across the state.”
“With the deployment of Bandicoot in Guruvayur, all the commissioned manholes have been transformed into robotic revolution. A special team of KWA officials will be constituted for the operation of robotic cleaning in Guruvayur… The modernisation of the sewerage system will help contain the spread of epidemics and serious health challenges caused by them.”
Objective of developing Bandicoot
Bandicoot “the world’s first robotic Scavenger” is developed by the Genrobotics in order to eliminate manual scavenging providing respite for workers engaged in manhole cleaning.
How does Bandicoot work?
The major component of Bandicoot i.e. the robotic Tron Unit enters the manhole and removes sewage using robotic hands. As per the company, this machine is waterproof and also has HD vision cameras and sensors that can detect harmful gases inside the manholes.
- Bandicoot is developed by Kerala based company Genrobotics and it had recently bagged ‘Kerala Pride’ award at the Huddle Global 2022 conclave. The conclave was organised by Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM).
- As per the Director of Genrobotic Innovations, Vimal Govind M K, this technology will be cleaning all the commissioned sewerage and drainages in Kerala.
- In 2018, Kerala Water Authority began using Bandicoot to clean the manholes in Thiruvananthapuram and later it was also released in Ernakulam.
- Currently it is being used in 17 states in India and three Union Territories.
About Kerala Water Authority
Kerala Water Authority is established for the development and regulation of water supply and wastewater collection and disposal in the state of Kerala. It is a government-owned organisation and hence a monopoly in most parts of the state. The authority was founded on 1 April 1984. The headquarters of the Kerala Water Authority is located in Thiruvananthapuram.
India ranks 42 in 55 countries on International IP Index
India ranks 42 in 55 countries on International IP Index
India maintains ranking in IP.
On Friday, the US Chambers of Commerce released the data, according to which India ranks 42nd in 55 countries on the International IP Index, and is ripe to become a leader for emerging markets seeking to transform their economy through IP-driven. However US ranks 1st, UK ranks 2nd, France ranks 3rd & Venezuela Ranking is 55
What is International IP Index:
The Index evaluates intellectual property rights across 55 global economies — from patent and copyright policies to commercialization of IP assets and ratification of international treaties. The United States earned the top score again, and 45 economies improved their overall score.
According to the U.S. Department of Commerce:
IP continues to be a massive economic driver for jobs and investment.
Words of senior vice president of the US Chamber of Commerce
Patrick Kilbride, Senior Vice President of the US Chamber of Commerce, Global Innovation Policy Centre who publishes the annual report, said,
“As India’s size and economic influence grows on the world stage, India is ripe to become a leader for emerging markets seeking to transform their economy through IP-driven innovation.”
Kilbride added further,
“India has taken steps to improve enforcement against copyright-infringing content and provides a best-in-class framework to promote better understanding and utilisation of IP assets. However, addressing long-standing gaps in its IP framework will be critical to India’s ability to create a new model for the region and India’s continued economic growth,”
Key Findings of International IP Index:
- The global IP environment has improved over the last decade. Challenges remain as many economies still receive low grades on their protection of intellectual property rights.
- New tools to combat IP infringement online helped strengthen protection for IP owners. However, historically, many economies have struggled to provide adequate copyright protection as the growth and scale of online piracy increased over the last decade.
- Enforcement against physical IP-infringing goods has failed to keep pace with the increase in the volume of international trade in counterfeits over the last ten years.
- IP-intensive goods and services were critical to the global response to COVID-19.
- Despite the critical role IP played in response to the pandemic, some World Trade Organization (WTO) members continued to push a proposal to “waive” international IP commitments.
About US Chambers of Commerce:
Founded: 22 April 1912
Northwest Washington, Washington, D.C., United States.
Founder: Charles Nagel
CEO: Suzanne P. Clark
AURANGABAD AND OSMANABAD TO BE KNOWN WITH NEW NAMES
Aurangabad will now be renamed as `Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar’ while Osmanabad will be called `Dharashiv’
Ministry of Home Affairs on Friday, approved the proposal and said the Central government had “no objection” to changing the names of both cities in the state.
INITIATION OF PROCEEDINGS
The demand to change the names of these cities was first raised by Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackrey several decades ago. However, former Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray took the decision to change these names in his last Cabinet meeting as chief minister before his government collapsed in 2022.
Aurangabad, got its name from the Last Mugal Emperor Aurangzeb Aalamgir. Grave of Aurangzeb is also located near Aurangabad in a small town named Khuldabad. Aurangazeb was the last Mugal emperor.
Chhatrapati Sambhaji, the eldest son of warrior king Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, was the second ruler of the Maratha state founded by his father. Sambhaji Maharaj was executed on Aurangzeb’s orders in 1689.
Osmanabad is a city and a municipal council in Osmanabad district in the Indian state of Maharashtra. City’s name Osmanabad derives from the last ruler of Hyderabad, Mir Osman Ali Khan. Mir Osman Ali Khan, was the last Nizam of the Princely State of Hyderabad, the largest princely state in British India.
Dharashiv, the name of a cave complex near Osmanabad, dates back to the 8th century as per some scholars. They were carved in the 5th – 6th century AD and are the place of faith for Buddhist and Jain religions.
A king named Shiv from Ter, an ancient trading centre, built this cave complex after a water source was found in the area. `Dhara’ in Marathi means a flow or stream of water.
EU approves 10th package of Russia sanctions on anniversary of invasion
The EU stands united with Ukraine and the Ukrainian people.
The Swedish EU Presidency has said that- after the hectic discussions, the European Union has approved a tenth package of Russia sanctions on the anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Statement of the Swedish EU Presidency
The EU Sanction for Ukraine
The package includes the-
- Tighter export restrictions regarding dual-use goods,
- Measures against entities supporting the war, spreading propaganda or delivering drones used by Russia.
- To cut off banks including the private Alfa-Bank and the online bank Tinkoff from the global system SWIFT
- Cut trade between the EU and Russia by more than 10 billion euros.
- To blacklist more individuals which includes the Russian propagandists and those who hold Kyiv responsible for deporting Ukrainian Children to Russia and the producers of the Iranian Drones deployed on the frontline.
Statement of the Warsaw
“The proposed restrictions on EU imports of Russian rubber included such a big quota of imports exempted and such long transition periods that they would have no effect in practice.”
Statement of the diplomat involved in the negotiations between the 27 EU countries and the Bloc’s hub Brussels
“This is very bad optics. What was supposed to be key here is a message of solidarity with Ukraine on this special day.”
Statement of the EU
“The 10th round of sanctions against Russia since the war started was designed to make financing the war more difficult and starve Russia of tech equipment and spare parts for arms used against Ukraine.”
About European Union
The European Union is a political and economic union of 27 member states of Europe. The EU Countries includes- Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden. Sweden holds the presidency for the European Union for the period of 1 January,2023 till 30 June, 2023.
UN Secretary General calls on G20 finance ministers meeting in India to be bold in efforts to reform multilateral development banks
The Finance Track is at the core of the G20 process and provides an effective forum for global economic discourse and policy coordination.
Spokesperson of UN Chief has said that “UN chief Antonio Guterres thinks India’s G20 Presidency is “very important” and calls on the grouping’s finance ministers, currently gathered in Bengaluru, to be “bold” in their efforts to reform the multilateral development banks and in finding solutions to pressing debt challenges.”
Statements of Spokesperson for Guterres
Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for UN Chief Antonio Guterres said that-
“We obviously… I think India’s presidency of the G20 is very important and we look forward to it. I think for this particular meeting of the finance ministers, the Secretary-General calls on the G20 finance ministers to be bold in their efforts to reform the multilateral development banks and in the effort to find solutions to pressing debt challenges through the debt roundtable.”
About G20 presidency
- India took over the G20 presidency on December 1.
- The First G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors (FMCBG) meeting is taking place from February 24-25, in Bengaluru, Karnataka.
- PM Modi has urged that the meeting’s discussions “should focus on the most vulnerable citizens of the world.”
Statement of PM Modi
“Only by creating an inclusive agenda will the global economic leadership win back the confidence of the world. The theme of our G20 Presidency also promotes this inclusive vision ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future’.”
“The COVID pandemic has delivered a once-in-a-Century blow to the global economy and many countries, especially developing economies, are still coping with its after-effects.”
“We are also witnessing rising geo-political tensions in different parts of the world. There are disruptions in global supply chains. Many societies are suffering due to rising prices. And, food and energy security have become major concerns across the world.”
“Even the financial viability of many countries is threatened by unsustainable debt levels.”
About the G20 finance ministers meeting in India
The G20 Finance Ministers meeting is spread over 3 sessions which covers issues related to-
- Strengthening multilateral development banks to address shared global challenges of the 21st century,
- Financing for resilient, inclusive and sustainable ‘cities of tomorrow’, and
- Leveraging Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) for advancing financial inclusion and productivity gains.
- Global economy, global health, and international taxation.
Click here to read more on the First G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting.
Paudel set to become Nepal’s next president after PM Prachanda ditches Oli’s candidate
Paudel has filed the nomination with the backing of eight political parties.
Ram Chandra Paudel, Nepali Congress senior leader is set to become Nepal’s next president. He was endorsed by eight political parties, including the CPN-Maoist Centre of Prime Minister Prachanda.
About Presidential Election
- In the March 9 presidential election Ram Chandra Paudel will compete against CPN-UML’s Subas Nemwang.
- Today, Raudel and Nemwang have filed their candidacies.
Candidacy and filing of the nomination-
Ram Chandra Paudel
- Paudel has filed the nomination with the backing of eight political parties- Nepali Congress, CPN- Maoist Centre of Prime Minister Prachanda, CPN-Unified Socialist, Rastriya Janata Party, Lokatantrik Samajwadi Party, Rastriya Janamorcha, Nagarik Unmukti Party and Janamat Party.
- Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba, CPN (Unified Socialist) Chairman Madhav Kumar Nepal, Maoist Centre’s Senior vice-chair Narayan Kaji Shrestha, Federal Council Chairman of Janata Samajbadi Party Ashok Rai and Abdul Khan of Janamat Party was proposed by Poudel.
- Candidacy of Poudel was seconded by President of Loktantrik Samajbadi Party Mahanta Thakur, Congress vice-president Purna Bahadur Khadka, Nagarik Unmukti Party Chairperson Ranjita Shrestha, Chairman of the Rastriya Janamorcha Chitra Bahadur KC and Maoist Centre’s Hitraj Pande.
- Candidacy of Nembang was proposed by UML Chairman Oli, Deputy General Secretary Prithvi Subba Gurung, secretaries Gokarna Raj Bista, Raghubir Mahaseth, and Chhabilal Bishwakarma.
- Candidacy of Nemwang is seconded by Party leaders Yogesh Bhattarai, Top Bahadur Rayamajhi, Juli Kumari Mahaseth, Dil Kumari Rawal Thapa, and Aman Kumar Maskey.
Reasons for the elections
The tenure of the current president, Bidya Devi Bhandari, will end on March 12.
Statement of the Former Premier Oli
“Prime Minister Prachanda told him that he was under pressure to support Paudel’s candidacy.”
“Prachanda expressed hope that Prachanda will help the UML candidate according to the agreement of December 25.”
Both countries enjoy excellent bilateral ties. They have close linguistic, marital, religious and cultural ties at people-to-people level between Indians and Nepalese.
Prime Minister- Pushpa Kamal Dahal
Currency- Nepalese Rupee
RRR Wins Best International Film At Hollywood Critics Association Awards
RRR’s “Naatu Naatu” has been nominated in the Best Original Song category at the upcoming 95th Academy Awards.
After winning at the Oscars and at the Golden Globes Award, RRR has now won the Best International Film honor at the Hollywood Critics Association Awards 2023, which took place at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills. The film RRR has beat Tom Cruise’s blockbuster Top Gun: Maverick in the category of the Best Action Film and also got honored for Best Original Song and Best Stunts as well. The film “Everything Everywhere All At Once” has won the award for the best film.
Acceptance Speech of the Director SS Rajamouli
Acceptance Speech by Actor Ram Charan
“I didn’t expect to come up on stage. I was just told by my director to accompany him. Thank you so much for giving us all this love. It’s a great response, so we are going to come back with better films and entertain you all. Thank you so much.”
Statement of Director Mani Ratnam
The Director Mani Ratnam has lauded Rajamouli’s work and said that-
“His films — Baahubali 1 and 2 — had a huge impact on him. Explaining why, he had said, “I have been wanting to make this film called Ponniyin Selvan for years, and I could not find a way, till Baahubali came. The one huge thing it did was… it came in two parts. That you can tell a story in two parts and keep the audience glued. It just opened my… you know… possibility of me making the film. If Baahubali hadn’t come in two parts, I wouldn’t have been able to make Ponniyin Selvan. So, thank you very much.”
Click here to read more on RRR.
Click here to read more RRR nominations.
NGT forms panel to look into petition claiming illegal manufacture of acid in Old Delhi
The dangerous fumes from illegal acid manufacturing is causing damage to the environment and affecting the health of the locals.
Current Affairs: A panel has been formed by the National Green Tribunal to look into a Petition which claims that acid is being illegally manufactured in an Old Delhi neighbourhood in Central district. This Petition was filed by a resident of Gali Kuan Wali, Lal Darwaza, Sirki Walan and as per the Petition, dangerous fumes are being released due to the illegal acid manufacturing. These dangerous fumes are causing damage to the environment and affecting the health of the locals.
Statement of the bench
The bench comprises of Judicial Member Hon’ble Justice Sudhir Agarwal and Expert Member A Senthil Vel said that-
“In our view, the grievance at the first instance can be looked into and examined by the local authorities, for the purpose whereof, we constitute a joint committee comprising the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC), the deputy commissioner of police (north) and the district magistrate (north).”
“The DM would be the nodal agency for coordination and compliance.”
Steps the committee will work on
The committee will look into the complaint and will-
- visit the site,
- collect relevant information,
- check if there is any violation,
- take appropriate remedial action within two months.
Statement of the Green Panel
“The said committee shall submit an action-taken report within three months.”
About Delhi Pollution Control Committee
Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) is a regulatory body that came into existence in 1991 after the Notification dated 15-3-1991 of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), which delegated all its powers and functions to DPCC under section 4(4) of Water Act & Section 6 of Air Act. The Chairman of DPCC is Ashwani Kumar.
About National Green Tribunal
National Green Tribunal (India) had been set up under National Green Tribunal Act as a statutory body in 2010 to deal with environmental cases and speedy implementation of decisions relating to it. Its Chairman is Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel.
Essence of justice lies in speedy resolution of disputes: Justice Hima Kohli
Justice Kohli was delivering the keynote address at a seminar on ‘Evolution and Future of Military Jurisprudence – An Indian Army Perspective’
During a keynote address at a seminar on military jurisprudence, Supreme Court Justice Hima Kohli emphasized the importance of speedy resolution of disputes in the Indian legal system.
She lamented the impact of the “groaning legal system” on the timelines for case settlement. Kohli pointed out that the rule of law is fundamental to any democratic society, and that alternative dispute resolution methods have opened doors to faster resolutions wherever possible.
Military Justice Must Adhere to the Rule of Law and Natural Justice Principles
- Justice Kohli stressed that military justice dispensation must ensure that the principles of natural justice and the rule of law are adhered to in every step of a trial conducted by military courts.
- Impartiality during the trial is essential to ensure a fair hearing, she added.
- Kohli said that the rule of law is a guarantee for all citizens, regardless of their social or economic status, and a right to seek justice whenever their rights, as enshrined in the Constitution and the statutes, are violated.
Indian Judicial System Adapts to Artificial Intelligence
- Justice Kohli noted that the Indian judicial system has adapted to artificial intelligence in recent years, and the COVID-19 pandemic has hastened the process.
- Virtual hearings and virtual courtrooms have made access to justice more accessible from remote areas of the country.
- Kohli suggested that court-martials and summary trials can be conducted virtually, with witnesses and arguments presented on the virtual platform.
Vacancies in Armed Forces Tribunal Bench Led to Backlog of Cases
- Justice Kohli highlighted the vacancies in the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) benches as a significant handicap.
- The accumulation of over nineteen thousand cases across all AFTs has added to the backlog. However, she expressed hope that the recent appointments to fill 23 vacancies in AFTs would ease the backlog of cases.
- She emphasized the importance of providing AFTs with:
- adequate infrastructure,
- updated technology, and
- staff for effective and efficient functioning.
Non-Application of Judgments by Courts a Critical Area of Course Correction
Justice Kohli pointed out that the non-application of judgments by courts on policy issues is a critical area that requires a course correction. She observed that judgments on certain principles of law are not applied uniformly to all similarly situated personnel, which compels them to file independent petitions.
Landmark Judgment on Permanent Commission for Women in the Armed Forces
- Justice Kohli called attention to a landmark judgment that has positioned fairness and equality at the centre stage of the Indian Armed Forces.
- The judgment opened the doors to the permanent commission for women who were earlier offered only short service commissions.
- She said that offering a permanent commission to women officers is about recognizing the unique skills and abilities that women bring to the Armed Forces. By doing so, the armed forces show that they value women’s contributions and are committed to providing women with the same opportunities for career advancement as their male counterparts.
Indian Armed Forces
- The Government of India is responsible for ensuring the defence of India and every part thereof.
- The Supreme Command of the Indian Armed Forces vests in the President.
- The responsibility for national defence rests with the Cabinet.
- The Indian Armed Forces comprise of three divisions – the Indian Army, Indian Navy, and the Indian Air Force.
- The Indian Army, established after independence, has six operational commands and one training command under the Chief of Army Staff.
- The Indian Navy, with its foundation laid in the 17th century, has three area commands and is led by the Chief of the Naval Staff.
- The Indian Air Force, officially established in 1932, underwent significant upgrades in the last few decades and also introduced a short service commission for women.
The National War Memorial (NWM) is observing its fourth anniversary on February 25,2023
On February 25, 2023, the National War Memorial (NWM) marked its fourth anniversary. To commemorate the occasion, Air Marshal BR Krishna, Chief of Integrated Defence Staff to the Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee (CISC), along with Deputy Chief of Army Staff Lt Gen MV Suchindra Kumar, Officiating Vice Chief of the Naval Staff Vice Admiral Kiran Deshmukh, and Deputy Chief of the Air Staff Air Marshal Narmdeshwar Tiwari, laid a wreath at the iconic monument and paid tribute to the fallen heroes.
National War Memorial
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated the National War Memorial to the nation on February 25, 2019.
- The iconic monument houses the eternal flame, which exemplifies a soldier’s supreme sacrifice in the line of duty, making him immortal.
- Since its inception, all homage ceremonies, including those on National Days, have been held solely at the NWM. Foreign dignitaries and delegations have been visiting the NWM to honour the supreme sacrifice of the Indian Armed Forces’ fallen soldiers.
Varied Initiatives at NWM
The government launched several initiatives to bring the brave acts of the Bravehearts to the greatest number of people, particularly the youth, to instil a sense of patriotism, courage, sacrifice, and devotion to duty. The initiatives have received a positive response from the general public.
- Interactive screens are installed in the vicinity of the Memorial for people to pay digital tributes to the heroes who sacrificed their lives for the Nation. A massive 12.76 lakh digital tributes were paid since February 25, 2022, by 24.94 lakh visitors.
- Guided tours are being organized at the NWM for school students to recognize the importance of the Armed Forces in safeguarding the territorial integrity of the nation and to inspire the youth to contribute to nation-building
- The NWM has also been organizing patriotic school band performances. To date, more than 70 schools and 832 participants have demonstrated their musical prowess.
Interactive screens were installed in the vicinity of the Memorial, allowing people to pay digital tributes to the fallen heroes. Since February 25, 2022, 24.94 lakh visitors from all walks of life paid a staggering 12.76 lakh digital tributes.
Guided Tours for Students
To recognise the significance of the Armed Forces in safeguarding the territorial integrity of the nation and inspire the youth to contribute to Nation Building, guided tours are being organised at the NWM for school students. Since the last anniversary, over 1,460 schools, with a strength of more than 1.80 lakh students, have visited the Memorial.
School Band Performances
The NWM has also been organising school band performances with patriotic flair. To date, more than 70 schools with 832 participants have showcased their musical brilliance. An online form-based process facilitating online registration for band performance has been created on the Memorial’s web portal.
The iconic monument houses the eternal flame, symbolising the supreme sacrifice made by a soldier in the line of duty and making them immortal. Since its inauguration, all homage ceremonies have been conducted at the NWM, including those on National Days. Eminent dignitaries and delegations from foreign countries have been visiting the NWM to honour the supreme sacrifice of fallen soldiers from the Indian Armed Forces.
Nation Building Events
The NWM provides a platform to organise events to promote national integration and inspire the spirit of nation-building. The stage show ‘Kargil: Ek Shaurya Gaatha’ by the National School of Drama and the painting exhibition by Lalit Kala Akademi, on the theme ‘Shaurya Gaatha’, witnessed a large number of visitors. Eminent sportspersons, including Olympians and National Sports and Adventure awardees, visited the NWM to pay their respects.
Honours and Tributes
Recipients of coveted civilian honours – Padma awards, Lalit Kala & Sangeet Kala Akademi awards and Sangeet Natak Akademi awards – visited the Memorial in the last year to pay their solemn tributes to the fallen soldiers, validating the significance and prominence of the NWM as a national monument.
Memorial’s Significance and Dedication
The NWM stands as a symbol of the sacrifices made by brave soldiers since Independence. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi dedicated it to the nation on February 25, 2019. The Government took several initiatives to make the gallant deeds of these brave hearts known to the public, especially the youth, inculcating a sense of patriotism, courage, sacrifice, and devotion to duty. These initiatives have received an encouraging response from the public.
26th February 2023
Danish Royal family first time in India
Denmark’s Crown Prince Frederik André Henrik Christian and Crown Princess Mary Elizabeth plans visits India
Purpose of Visit –
Current Affairs: India-Denmark: Partners for Green and Sustainable Progress. Green Strategic Partnership signed by India and Denmark in 2020
The Green Strategic Partnership between India and Denmark, a mutually beneficial agreement, focuses on addressing issues of national as well as international importance and on shifting efforts towards more engagement in green technologies and sustainable practices.
Engagement during visit –
Both are accompanied by Foreign Minister Lars Rasmussen, Environment Minister Magnus Heunicke and Minister for Climate, Energy and Utilities Lars Aagaard
During the visit, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince will meet the Vice President and will address the opening session of the India-Denmark: Partners for Green and Sustainable Progress.
Both will also travel to Agra and Chennai. The Danish prince and princess will travel back on March 2 from Chennai.
Arindam Bagchi, Official Spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs of India in his tweet quotes about the visit as ‘the visit will further strengthen and enhance the close and friendly ties between India and Denmark’
The Ministry of External Affairs also quoted that, “India and Denmark as vibrant and open democracies, share common values of a rules-based international order and convergence of views on significant multilateral issues.”
Capital – Copenhagen
Currency – Danish Krone (1 Danish Krone = 11.75 INR)
Prime Minister – Mette Frederiksen (June since 2019)
Veer Savarkar Garden, theme park & museum proposed
Tourism Minister Mangal Prabhat Lodha to attend the formal function in Nashik today
Current Affairs: On the occasion of the death anniversary of Veer Savarkar, today the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation has proposed to develop the Veer Savarkar Garden, Theme Park, and Museum with their funds.
Vinayak Damodar Savarkar
(commonly known as Veer Savarkar)
Born 28 May 1883 in Bhagur, Nashik District
Death 26 February 1966 at Bombay
He was a Freedom fighter, politician, activist, writer. Savarkar developed the Hindu nationalist political ideology of Hindutva while imprisoned at Ratnagiri.
In India, Ganesh Savarkar had organised an armed revolt against the Morley-Minto reforms of 1909. Savarkar was accused of participating in a conspiracy. In the next year, he was arrested in London on multiple charges, and British authorities decided to try him in India.
Savarkar, then aged 28, was convicted and sentenced to 50-years imprisonment and transported on 4 July 1911 to the infamous Cellular Jail in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Savarkar Tourism Circuit
The government has announced this project as it is Vinayak Damodar Savarkar’s death anniversary today. The government will launch the Savarkar tourism circuit dedicated to the revolutionary freedom fighter and Hindutva icon, ‘Swatantryaveer’ Vinayak Damodar Savarkar.
The circuit would involve places like his birthplace Bhagur in Nashik, his hostel room at Fergusson College in Pune, and a temple called Patit Pawan Mandir that he established in Ratnagiri district, the Swatantryaveer Savarkar Rashtriya Smarak in Mumbai among others.
Veer Savarkar Garden
A grand theme park and museum based on philosophy will be built at Nashik. Savarkar, a freedom fighter who made infinite sacrifice and dedication for the nation, will be honoured for his thoughts and work
Maharashtra government order regarding the said project also said ” In this background, the municipal council should pay the amount of work that has been completed at present to the concerned contractor and classify the said work in the status of Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation. After that, the Mahamandal should complete the said work by the contractor as per the administrative approval,”
The order further stated that “Apart from that, if additional work is to be undertaken, the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation should conduct a separate tender process from their funds. The ownership of the said theme park or museum will remain with the city council, but the corporation should build the said project and maintain it regularly from its own funds,”
MP has got its first women and child friendly state
The police station is a positive step in women empowerment and gender justice
This is the state’s first women and child-friendly police station. The Police Station has been designed which is not only equipped with modern facilities but is also women-child friendly in Jhangirabad, Bhopal. The newly designed police station has all the basic requirements such as a waiting room, reception window, feeding room and place for children. The police station ,is however, yet to be inaugurated.
Basic Features of Police Station:
- Visiting rooms
- Lunch rooms
- Separate Toilets for males and females
- Shed, garden, and platform
- Anti-trafficking room
- Victims visitors room
Madhya Pradesh literally means ‘central province’. It is a state in central India. Its capital is Bhopal, and the largest city is Indore. Indore has been given the title of the Cleanest City in India. Present Chief Monister of State is Shivraj Singh Chaouhan. Madhya Pradesh is the second largest Indian state by area and the fifth largest state by population with over 72 million residents. It is home to Panna Tiger Reserve along with Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve.
Pakistan accepts one more IMF condition, agrees to increase interest rate by 200 basis points
Pakistan’s government has agreed to increase the policy interest rate, currently at 17%, by two percent or 200 basis points.
This is to meet another pre-condition set by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for releasing USD 1.1 billion in critical funding, a part of the USD 6.5 billion bailout package. The increase is based on rates set by the government in the auction to raise domestic debt. The decision will push the interest rate to 19%, just below the previous record of 19.5% set in October 1996.
Discussions with IMF Officials on Track
- Sources in the Ministry of Finance revealed that a technical-level discussion had virtually taken place between Islamabad and the IMF review mission.
- They said that there was an expectation that Islamabad would increase the interest rate by two per cent.
- Most of the pre-conditions of the IMF had been fulfilled, and the discussion on some power sector issues was in the final stage.
- Once that is completed, the staff-level agreement with the IMF will be reached.
Pakistani Officials and IMF Staff Conclude Ninth Review of Bailout Package
- Earlier this month, relevant Pakistani officials and the IMF staff concluded the ninth review of the USD 6.5 billion bailout package without a staff-level agreement.
- However, both sides agreed to a set of measures that could still help clinch the deal.
- The Pakistani authorities had hoped to convince the IMF about gradually implement the conditions. But the hopes were dashed during the 10-day visit by the IMF mission.
- Pakistan agreed to implement the Memorandum of Economic and Financial Policies (MEFP), which contained policy suggestions by the IMF. Officials still hoped that the staff-level agreement could be reached soon.
Broad Consensus on Economic Measures
- There was a broad consensus about leaving the rupee value to be determined by the market forces, lifting of the restrictions on imports, and allowing the already imported goods to be cleared.
- The power tariff was also to be increased and new taxes imposed to pave the way for the deal.
- However, because of the severity of the economic crisis, every agreed measure would be tough on an overwhelming majority of the Pakistani people.
Austerity Measures to Cut Down Expenditures
- In the face of an unprecedented economic crisis in the country, Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif instructed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to cut the number of foreign missions as part of austerity measures.
- The Prime Minister announced the decision on February 22.
- Shehbaz has issued instructions to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to reduce the number of foreign missions abroad and cut down their offices, staff, and other measures to reduce expenditures by 15%.
- As per the official communication titled “Rationalisation of Foreign Mission Abroad,” the prime minister constituted a National Austerity Committee (NAC) given the ongoing economic constraints and the consequent need for fiscal consolidation and control of the external deficit.
Indian Air Force to participate in Exercise Cobra Warrior at Waddington in UK
Indian Air Force (IAF) will participate in multilateral air exercise ‘Exercise Cobra Warrior’ at the RAF’s Waddington Air Force Base in the UK from March 6 to 24, an official statement said.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) is set to participate in the multilateral air exercise ‘Exercise Cobra Warrior’ at the RAF’s Waddington Air Force Base in the UK from March 6 to 24, according to an official statement.
The IAF is participating in the exercise with five Mirage 2000 fighters, two C-17 Globemaster III, and an IL-78 mid-air refueller aircraft. The exercise aims to participate in diverse fighter aircraft engagements and learn from the best practices of various Air Forces.
IAF Contingent Departs for the UK
- An Indian Air Force contingent comprising 145 Air Warriors departed from the Air Force Station in Jamnagar on Sunday for the UK to participate in the exercise.
- The RAF and the IAF will be joined by contingents from Finland, Sweden, South Africa, the US, and Singapore.
Telephonic Conversation between Defence Ministers
- Defence Minister Rajnath Singh held a telephonic conversation with his UK counterpart Ben Wallace on February 21, where he called on UK companies to become part of India’s growth story and participate in co-development and co-production in the country.
- Both ministers discussed:
- a wide range of defence and security issues, including regional developments and the Indo-Pacific, as well as
- reviewing their ongoing defence cooperation and
- expressing satisfaction at their bilateral military-to-military engagements.
Taking Flight with Glory: The Indian Air Force
- The Indian Air force (IAF) is the Air wing of the Indian armed forces. Its objective is to ensure:
- the Indian airspace and
- to engage in aerial warfare during a conflict.
- India Air Force is the fourth largest in the world after the USA, China, and Russia.
- IAF or the Bharatiya Vayu Sena was initially established as an auxiliary air force unit of the Royal air force of Brittain. The title Royal was given to the air force in the honor of India’s aviation service during world war II.
- The name Royal Airforce was kept until India had dominion status. As the government transitioned to a republic in 1950, the prefix Royal was removed.
- The President of India holds the rank of supreme commander or Commander-in-chief of the IAF.
- The motto of the IAF is ‘Nabhah Sparhsam Diptam’ which is taken from the Bhagavad Gita, and means to ‘Touch the sky with glory’.
Science and Technology
30 seconds and the test results are ready
IIT-B alumni turned entrepreneur developed smartphone-based health test kit
A technology has been developed by IITians that can test the urine sample and provide the test results within 30 seconds. Three alumni of Indian Institute of Technology Bombay Anurag Meena, Nikunj Malpani and Pratik Lodha founded a startup called “NeoDocs”. The health officer at Nashik District Administration said they have signed an MoU with NeoDocs for using their instant service. Last year they have received Maharashtra Startup Week Award and this idea was presented at the recent Indian Science Congress as well.
How does the Technology work?
A person has to dip a card (supplied in the test kit) in urine for a second, and click a photo of it on his/her phone using the ‘Neodocs’ app.
As the photo gets uploaded on their cloud server, an algorithm uses computer vision to scan the card and gives results within 30 seconds.
What led to this idea?
value of diagnostics has remained important in any socio-economic system but this became crucial during the COVID-19 lockdown time then they realised the importance of the quantification of health. So, This test kit was developed thinking that it will help in bringing healthcare to every doorstep and reduce the overall cost of testing significantly, without discriminating between rich and poor.
What lies ahead?
The trio is working further on researching and developing instant test kits for various human bio-fluids (blood, vaginal discharge, semen, etc). They are also manufacturing chronic kidney disease and elderly test kits. In a similar way there is a maternity care kit for women to be used throughout pregnancy
IIT – Bombay (Indian Institute of Technology)
IIT Bombay was the second Indian Institute of Technology to be established in 1958 with assistance from UNESCO and with funds contributed by the Soviet Union. It is an institute of National Importance. Its present chairman is Dr. Sharad Kumar Saraf.
IOC to set up green hydrogen plants at all refineries
IOC chairman said the company plans to set up 7k tons annually green hydrogen-producing facility
Chairman of Indian Oil Corporation Shrikant Madhav Vaidya revealed that the company is planning to set up green hydrogen plants at all its refineries by 2047. This project is a part of a 2-lakh crore green transition plan to achieve net-zero emissions.
IOC is reorganizing its business with a more emphasis on petrochemicals to face volatility in the fuel business. Moreover, transforming petrol pumps into energy outlets that offer EV charging points and battery-swapping options in addition to conventional fuels.
Hydrogen is rightly considered to be the fuel of the future as it is seen as the cleanest known fuel that emits just oxygen and water when burned. However, it is more costly than alternative fuels and limits its use in businesses. Refineries that convert crude oil into fuels like gasoline and diesel use hydrogen to reduce the Sulphur content in diesel fuel.
This hydrogen is created utilising fossil fuels such as natural gas. IOC intends to split water using electricity generated from renewable sources such as solar to produce green hydrogen. In the coming decade, Green hydrogen is expected to account for 50 per cent of total hydrogen output and 100 per cent. IOC wants to install electric vehicle charging stations at 10,000 gas stations during the next two years, increasing the capacity of renewable energy from 256 MW to 12 gigawatts.
- Clean Fuel
- Will combat Climate Change
- Reduce dependency on fossil fuels
Hydrogen is a chemical element with the symbol H and atomic number 1. It is the lightest element. At standard conditions, hydrogen is a gas of diatomic molecules having the formula H2. It is colorless, odorless, tasteless, non-toxic, and highly combustible. It is the most abundant chemical substance in the universe, constituting roughly 75% of all normal matter.
Green hydrogen (GH2 or GH2) is hydrogen generated by renewable energy or from low-carbon power. It has significantly lower carbon emissions than grey hydrogen, which is produced by steam reforming of natural gas.
Four men acquitted of Delhi riots, 2020
The court acquitted the accused persons giving them the benefit of doubt.
Delhi’s Karkardooma Court’s Judge Pulastya Pramachala has recently acquitted four accused (Dinesh Yadav alias Michael, Babu alias Sahil, Sandeep alias Mogli and Tinku) of rioting, theft and burning shops in the Gokul Puri area in February 2020.
Facts of the case: –
The court was hearing a case against nine men accused of being part of a riotous mob that torched a medical store on the main Brijpuri Road in Bhagirathi Vihar on February 25, 2020.
Despite knowing the names and particulars of the accused, the constable formally recorded the information with a delay on March 20, 2020.
A charge sheet was filed by officials at Gokalpuri police station, for various provisions, including rioting, of the Indian Penal Code.
Observation by the Court : –
- IDENTITY OF ACCUSED : The identity of the accused was not proved by the evidence of two police officials and Constable Vipin remained the only prosecution witness to establish that they were part of the mob. For the identification of the accused, three public witnesses including the complainant did not support the prosecution’s case and were declared hostile.
- DELAY IN FIR :For a delay point, the Judge observed that, Keeping in view such delay in disclosure of vital information being recorded, I find it desirable to apply the test of consistent testimony of more than one witness in the present case.
- APPLICATION OF ‘TEST’ : the constable’s sole testimony was not sufficient to assume the presence of any of the accused in the mob.
In such a situation, accused persons are given the benefit of doubt. Hence, the court acquitted four men in a case of rioting, vandalism, arson and theft by mob.
Government questioned by Supreme Court
The Union Secretary, Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment ordered to file Affidavits
While deciding PIL filled, SC on Wednesday ordered Union to file implementation of Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and Their Rehabilitation Act, within six weeks.
Balram Singh, in person has filed a petition in the way of PIL before SC, demanding court to issuance of directions to implement provisions, inter alia, of the Employment of Manual Scavengers and Construction of DryLatrines (Prohibition) Act, 1993 and the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and Their Rehabilitation Act, 2013
Union of India being made Respondent in the present Petition, was represented by Advocate Bhati, Additional Solicitor General of India.
Observation by Court :-
Court observed that, this court has dealt with the issue of manual scavenging previously. In a landmark judgement of Safai Karmachari andolan, this court in the year 2014 ,already abolished the manual scavenging and ordered state governments to provide financial assistance and rehabilitation to those who had lost a family member to the inhuman practice.
In the above-mentioned case, court after keeping provisions of Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and Their Rehabilitation Act,
2013, have issued certain directions such as –
- The payment of Rs 10 lakh to the family of those who died cleaning sewers since 1993
- Provision of residential plots or a flat to the deceased’s family and scholarship to the children
- All states to implement the new 2013 law, prohibiting manual scavenging entirely.
- Railway to adopt time bound strategy to abolish manual scavenging.
- One adult from such families to be given loan for establishment of new occupation
- One adult member of such families to be given training in certain skill and while the training to be paid with stipend., Etc
Court Order :-
Keeping in mind the previously issued direction, SC while issuing directions in the instant case have ordered Union to state steps taken by it in implementing the previously given directions. Court also demanded Union to provide data regarding steps taken to abolish dry laterins, steps taken for rehabilitation, status of dry laterins, alternative mechanism used in place of manual scavenging, internet tracking facility development for tracking real time sewer deaths.
Court also ordered The Union Secretary and Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment to file their affidavits on record regarding the above-mentioned data, within six weeks of time.
SC has fixed this PIL in April month for further compliances to be done by Union, as per directionsof SC.
27th February 2023
Union Minister Smriti Irani inaugurates W20 inception meeting today at Chatrapati Sambhaji Nagar
In the 2 days inception meeting, around 150 women dignitaries from G 20 member countries will be participating.
Current Affairs: Smriti Irani, Union Minister for Women & Child Development and Minority Affairs inaugurated a 2 day Women 20 (W 20) inception meeting at Chatrapati Sambhaji Nagar, Maharashtra.
About Women 20
- It is an official engagement group under the Indian presidency of G20.
- Dr. Bhagat Kishanrao Karad, Union Minister of State for Finance was also present in the opening ceremony.
- India’s G20 Sherpa, Amitabh Kant, Founder chair of W20, Dr. Gulden Turktan, Chair of W20 Indonesia 2022, Ms Uli Silalahi were also present during the opening ceremony.
- In the 2 days inception meeting, around 150 women dignitaries from G20 member countries will be participating.
- The representatives have been divided into 5 groups and each group will discuss priority areas in 2 days.
Statement of the Chairperson of W20
Dr. Sandhya Purecha, the chairperson of W20 and chairperson of Sangeet Natak Akademi has said that-
“The Inception meeting five-panel discussions and two special sessions of discussion will deliberate.”
“The stories of unconventional women in India breaking barriers in different fields including in the Indian Navy, in grassroots entrepreneurship will also be shared with delegates.”
5 points being discussed in the 2 days meeting
- Women’s Empowerment.
- Climate resilience.
- How women will play an important role in the changes that will take place.
- How to create an enabling environment for grassroots women leaders.
- Infrastructure and skills wings.
About Today’s Meeting
A Seminar will be conducted on women empowerment in-
- Nano, micro and start up industries
- Women led development of India
- Success stories of Women
President inaugurated the 14th Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav
The Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav has been started on February 25 and will continue till march 5
Current Affairs: The President of India Droupadi Murmu inaugurated the 14th edition of Sanskriti Mahotsav. The latest edition is being held in Bikaner, Rajasthan at Dr. Karni Singh Stadium. Rajasthan Governor Kalraj Mishra and Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot among other cabinet ministers were present on the occasion. The festival, which started on February 25, will continue till March 5. The 9-days long festival is being organized for the first time in Rajasthan.
The objective of the festival is to preserve, promote and popularize the rich cultural heritage of the country. The festival will witness performances of about one thousand well-known artists from across the country based on folk dance, folk music, drama, and Sufi music. In addition to it, sand sculpture, an exhibition based on crafts, and other arts are also being organized. Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav is a significant event of the Ministry of Culture, which it started organizing in 2015.
More than 50,000 people are expected to reach the festival every day. It will not only showcase Indian Art and Culture but will also promote local tourism. Kaladarshanam and Desert Symphony are some of the noted art that would grace the festival.
President of India
The President of India is the head of state of the Republic of India. He/she is the nominal head and commander-in-chief of the Indian Armed Forces. Droupadi Murmu is the 15th and current president, having taken office on 25 July 2022. The President is indirectly elected by an electoral college. Article 53 of the Constitution of India states that the president can exercise their powers directly or by subordinate authority.
President Droupadi Murmu was born on 20 June, 1958 to a Santhali family in Odisha. She is an Indian politician who is serving as the 15th president of India. She is the first person belonging to the tribal community becoming the youngest person to occupy the post and the first President born in Independent India.
Rajasthan, is a state in northern India. Capital – Jaipur. It is the largest Indian state by area and the seventh largest by population. It comprises most of the wide Thar Desert and shares a border with the Pakistani provinces of Punjab to the northwest and Sindh to the west, along the Sutlej-Indus River valley, with the Tropic of Cancer passing through its southernmost tip.
Its major features include Rajasthan’s hill station, Mount Abu, in the ancient Aravalli mountain range and eastern Rajasthan, and the Keoladeo National Park of Bharatpur, a World Heritage Site.
Present Union Minister of Culture is G. Kishan Reddy
PM Modi to release over Rs 16,800 crore to more than 8 cr farmers under PM-KISAN scheme from Belagavi in Karnataka
He will also inaugurate and lay the foundation of multiple development projects worth over 6000 crore rupees in Karnataka
Current Affairs: Under the income support scheme- PM-Kisan, PM Modi will release the 13th instalment amount of more than Rs 16,800 crore to over eight crore beneficiary farmers at Belagavi, Karnataka. On a one day visit to Karnataka, he will also inaugurate and lay the foundation of multiple development projects worth over 6000 crore rupees in Karnataka and will be holding a roadshow in Belagavi.
About the PM-Kisan Scheme
- Rs 6,000 is annually released directly into each of the eligible landholder farmers’ bank accounts in three equal instalments of Rs 2,000.
- Over Rs 2.2 lakh crore has been disbursed to more than 11 crore landholder farmer families across the country.
- The 11th and 12th instalments of funds during the current financial year were released in May and October 2022.
- The PM-Kisan Scheme or the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Scheme was launched in the year 2019 at Gorakhpur,Uttar Pradesh.
Other Government Schemes for Farmers In India
- Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana
- Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY)
- Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)
- Gramin Bhandaran Yojana
- Pradhan Mantri Kisan Maan-Dhan Yojana (PM-KMY)
- Micro Irrigation Fund scheme
- Kisan Credit Card (KCC)
- National Mission For Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA)
Statement of the Agriculture Ministry
“The PM-Kisan scheme has already provided significant benefits to farmers across the country, and this latest instalment will further boost their incomes and contribute to the growth of the agriculture sector.”
“It has also increased farmers’ risk-taking capacity, leading to more productive investments. According to IFPRI, PM-Kisan funds are helping recipients meet their agricultural needs and other expenses like education, medical care and marriage.”
About the Beneficiaries of the Scheme
- All landholding farmer families in the country are eligible under the scheme, subject to certain exclusion criteria.
- The scheme has also benefited over three crore women beneficiaries who have collectively received over Rs 53,600 crore in funds in the past four years.
Effect of this Scheme
As per the ministry, the PM-Kisan’s funds have-
- Increased rural economic growth,
- Eased credit constraints for farmers and
- Boosted agricultural investments.
Other Projects PM Modi will inaugurate
- He will inaugurate Shivamogga airport developed at a cost of around 450 crore rupees.
- Under the Jal Jeevan Mission- He will lay the foundation stone of multi village schemes worth over 950 crore rupees.
- He will lay the foundation stone for six multi-village schemes under Jal Jeevan mission at a cumulative cost of 1585 crore rupees that will benefit 8.8 lakh people in over 315 villages.
- To benefit eight crore farmers, PM will release the 13th instalment amount of 16 thousand and eight hundred crore rupees under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sammaan Yojana.
About Ministry of Agriculture
Minister- Kailash Choudhary
Secretary- Sanjay Agarwal
Chief Minister- Basavaraj Bommai
Pakistan’s budget deficit projections revised to history’s highest at Rs 6.22 trillion
The revised estimate is Rs 1.7 trillion, or 37 per cent, more than that approved by the National Assembly
Pakistan’s federal budget deficit projection has been revised to history’s highest at Rs 6.22 trillion, despite putting a burden of Rs 735 billion on people on account of higher gas, electricity tariffs and additional taxes. The country has been pushed into a debt trap due to the unending fiscal woes.
About the Budget Deficit Report
After the recent talks with the International Monetary Fund, the revision has been made which exposed the massive underreporting of expenditures at the time of budget presentation by the finance minister. Details as per the federal budget deficit are-
- The federal government’s expenses and the income have a gap of around Rs 6.22 trillion for 2022-23.
- The revised deficit is equal to 7.4% of gross domestic product.
- The revised deficit is Rs 1.7 trillion or 37% more than than the National Assembly has approved in 2022-23.
- In June 2022, the federal budget deficit was at Rs. 45 trillion.
- In December 2022, the budget was more than the government has communicated to the IMF which is around Rs. 690 billion.
- As per the reports the size of the budget in June will also rise by 17% from Rs 9.6 trillion to Rs.11.2 trillion.
Actions required to take to bridge the gap
- The gap of around Rs 6.22 trillion deficit will be bridged by taking more loans from domestic and external sources.
- Due to the economic distress and meltdown, the government is unable to take this step to cover the gap of rs.6.22 trillion.
Reasons for the record budget deficit are
- In June, unprecedented debt servicing cost Rs 5.2 trillion. This cost is 32% more than the approved budget.
- In June the subsidies, estimated at Rs 699 billion were increased by 68% which is around Rs 12 trillion.
Statement of Rothschild in his paper
“Debt stabilisation was unlikely in the short term given the need to address the flood consequences and finance the current account deficit.”
“In view of the low level of available FX reserves, the debt management strategy of Pakistan may have to be revisited, to ensure the stability of Pakistani rupee and restoration of international capital markets’ confidence in the economy of Pakistan.”
About International Monetary Fund
The International Monetary Fund monitors the international monetary systems and global economic developments to identify risks and recommend policies for growth and financial stability. The Fund also undertakes a regular health check of the economic and financial policies of its 190 member countries. Its headquarter is in Washington D.C., United States and its current managing director is Kristalina Georgieva.
Both the countries have a complex and largely hostile relationship due to the multitude of historical and political events, most notably the partition in 1947. The India and Pakistan border is one of the most militarized international boundaries in the world.
Prime Minister- Shehbaz Sharif
Currency- Pakistani Rupee
UAE to send its second astronaut to space on a long haul mission to ISS
UAE will only be the 11th country to send an astronaut on a long-term mission to space with this mission
Sultan Al Neyadi, UAE’s second astronaut is set to embark on the historic space mission, today. Sultan is a mission specialist, Primary Crew, Crew-6 and the mission is scheduled at 10:45 am, from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, USA.
About the ISS Mission
Sultan Al Neyadi will be undertaking various science experiments over the period of 6 months-
- Learning about the cardiovascular system,
- Immune system,
- Fluid science,
- Plant biology,
- Sleep analysis and
Other members of the SpaceX crew-6
- Nasa commander Stephen Bowen,
- Pilot William Hoburg, and
- Russian cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev.
About Sultan Al Neyadi
- He is a member of the UAE Astronaut Program and an Emirati astronaut.
- He was born in the UAE in 1987 and has a PhD in Information Technology from Griffith University in Australia.
- He was chosen from over 4,000 applicants in 2018 to be one of two UAE astronauts on a mission to the International Space Station.
About SpaceX Crew-6
It is the sixth crewed operational NASA ‘Commercial Crew flight’ of a Crew Dragon spacecraft, and the ninth overall crewed orbital flight.
President- Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Capital- Abu Dhabi
Currency- United Arab Emirates Dirham
Click here to read more on the Astronauts on the Mission of ISS
Zelensky fires top military commander engaged in fight against Russian troops
Zelensky fires top military commander engaged in fight against Russian troops
without citing any reason
Zelensky announced the dismissal of Eduard Moskalyov as commander of the Joint Forces of Ukraine, which are engaged in battles in the Donbas region.
What actually happened:
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on Sunday fired a senior military commander helping lead the fight against Russian troops in the country’s embattled east but gave no reason for the move.
History of Russia and Ukraine:
In 2003, Russia attempted to integrate Ukraine into a new Russian-led Single Economic Space with Russia. However, with president Viktor Yushchenko in power, several problems resurfaced, including the Russia–Ukraine gas disputes due to Ukraine’s growing cooperation with the EU and bid to join NATO.
Relations between Russia and Ukraine:
There are no diplomatic or bilateral relations between Ukraine and Russia. The two countries have been in a State of War.
When did war happen:
Relations between the two countries became hostile after the Ukrainian revolution, which was followed by Russia’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine, and the war in Donbas, in which Russia backed the separatist fighters of the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic. The conflicts had killed more people by early 2020, and brought Western sanctions on Russia. Numerous bilateral agreements have been terminated and economic ties severed.
Russian military build-up on the border of Ukraine escalated tensions between the two countries and strained their bilateral relations, eventually leading to Russia initiating a full-scale invasion of the country. Ukraine broke diplomatic relations with Moscow in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022. Streets bearing the names of Russian figures and monuments symbolising Russian and Ukrainian friendship were removed from various locations across Ukraine.
Started: in 2014
Countries: Russia and Ukraine
Russia currency: Russian Ruble
Russia President: Vladimir Putin
Ukraine currency: Hryvnia
Ukraine President: Volodymyr Zelenskyy
One of the first Tagore Memorial Grove unveiled in US
The Tagore Grove Memorial has a life-size bronze statue of Tagore, unveiled in 2013, which is the only sixth full figure statue of the poet
To spread the message of Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s borderless world, the Tagore Memorial Grove and Walking Museum has been inaugurated in Texas. It was inaugurated at the Ray Miller Park in Houston in the presence of the enthusiastic diaspora, complete with Vedic chants, presentation and recitation of Tagore’s musical compositions.
About Tagore Grove
It is a free and open-air, permanent memorial of the poet’s words and thoughts, depicting
- His message of love,
- Universalism and
- A borderless world.
About the inauguration of memorial
Many public officials has attended the inauguration including-
- The Consul General of India, Aseem Mahajan
- Fort bend County Judge KP George
- Fort bend Commissioner Andy Myers
- Retired professor of American History at Rice University, Jon Boles
- Congressional Staffers of US Rep. Al Green
- US Rep. Lizzie Fletcher
- Officials representing Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner
The memorial is a collaboration between the Tagore Society of Houston (TSH) and the City of Houston Parks Department.
Statement of President of the Tagore Society of Houston
The President of the Tagore Society of Houston Gopendu Chakrbarti has said that-
“The Tagore Grove Memorial has a life-size bronze statue of Tagore, unveiled in 2013, which is the only sixth full figure statue of the poet erected outside his birthplace, Kolkata, India, and the first in the US.”
“This iconic Tagore Grove memorial seeks to be a permanent place for ‘peace and introspection’ for individuals and the community at large, comparable in potential impact as the Lincoln Memorial or the Statue of Liberty, and it is hoped that it will inspire visitors to make the world a better place for themselves and the coming generations.”
Statement of the Counsel General of India
The Counsel General of India Aseem Mahajan said that-
“I’m sure it will promote its objective of promoting cultural exchanges and mutual understanding.”
“India and the United States share a comprehensive global strategic partnership which touches all areas of human endeavour, like energy security, Defence, trade and investment and growing people-to-people ties.”
“The timing of the inauguration is significant as it coincides with India’s celebration of 75 years of independence (Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav) and marks 102 years of the opening of Viswa Bharati, the world university founded by Tagore.”
Statement of Fort Bend County Judge George
“His writings are still relevant and impact lives in this time and age.”
About the Tagore Society of Houston
- Tagore Society of Houston was established in 1974.
- It was established to spread humanistic philosophy and the universal message of Tagore as its primary and only mission, is a non-religious and non-sectarian organisation.
- It completed the first phase of Tagore Grove at Ray Miller Park in the year 2013.
- In 2020, it initiated the second phase of the Grove, a USD 300,000 upgrade, to convert the Grove into a free open-air memorial.
US Energy Dept concludes lab leak caused Covid-19 pandemic
US Energy Dept concludes lab leak caused Covid-19 pandemic
The Energy Department now joins the Federal Bureau of Investigation in saying the virus likely spread via a mishap at a Chinese laboratory.
What is the Investigation says:
Federal Bureau Investigation (FBI) previously came to the conclusion that the pandemic was likely the result of a lab leak in 2021 with “moderate confidence” and still holds this view.
Lawmakers, particularly House and Senate Republicans, are pursuing their own investigations into the origins of the pandemic and are pressing the Biden administration and the intelligence community for more information.
What are Energy department’s Insights :
The Energy Department’s conclusion is the result of new intelligence and is significant because the agency has considerable scientific expertise and oversees a network of US national laboratories, some of which conduct advanced biological research.
Energy Department’s insights comes as
conduct biological research, rather than more traditional forms of intelligence like spy networks or communications intercepts.
US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan says:
“President Biden specifically requested that the national labs, which are part of the Energy Department, be brought into this assessment because he wants to put every tool at use to be able to figure out what happened here.”
What is the Conclusion:
The Central Intelligence Agency and another agency that officials wouldn’t name remain undecided between the lab-leak and natural-transmission theories,
FBI previously came to the conclusion that the pandemic was likely the result of a lab leak in 2021 with “moderate confidence” and still holds this view.
US officials added that while the Energy Department and the FBI each say an unintended lab leak is the most likely cause of the pandemic, they arrived at those conclusions for different reasons.
Delhi HC upholds validity of Centre’s Agnipath Scheme, dismisses all pleas
A bench of Hon’ble Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad also dismissed the pleas seeking resumption and enrolment as per the previous recruitment scheme in defence services.
On Monday, the Delhi High Court upheld the validity of the Agnipath Scheme. The court dismissed all petitions challenging the Centre’s recruitment scheme for the Indian Forces. The bench dismissed the pleas seeking resumption and enrolment as per the previous recruitment scheme in Defence services.
About the Bench
The bench comprises of-
- Hon’ble Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma
- Hon’ble Justice Subramonium Prasad
“This court does not find any reason to interfere with the scheme.”
Reason for the issues
After the launch of the scheme, the protest started in several parts of the country for-
- The short length of service,
- No pension provisions for those released early, and
- The 17.5 to 21 years age restriction.
- The scheme makes it difficult for current aspirants and makes them ineligible to serve in the Indian armed forces.
- The Government extended the upper age limit to 23 years for recruitment.
- On July 19, 2022 the Supreme Court had transferred the petitions challenging the scheme to the Delhi High Court.
- The High Court has also asked the High Courts of Kerala, Punjab and Haryana, Patna and Uttarakhand to transfer the PILs against the Agnipath Scheme.
- In August, 2022, a division bench declined to halt the scheme and granted them time to file its reply.
- In October, 2022, the Centre gave the statement in the Delhi High Court that- the recruitment in the army is an essential sovereign function carried out by the government keeping national security in mind.
- On December 15, 2022, the court reserved its order and asked the parties to file their written statements by December 23, 2022.
“The structural changes in the army were necessitated in the context of the “sea change” in global military warfare, “to evolve a youthful, modern and futuristic fighting force” and to infuse young blood into the Army, who are mentally and physically fit.”
“Agnipath is a “tailor-made scheme” which has been formulated after comprehensive discussions by experts to serve the needs of our nation and change warfare.”
Statement of the Additional Solicitor General
Aishwariya Bhati, the Additional Solicitor General has said that-
“The court that the policy is an evolution from our start as a part of the British Army.”
About Agnipath Scheme
- The scheme was launched on June 14, 2022.
- It lays out rules for the recruitment of youths in the armed forces.
- As per the scheme students between 17-and-a-half and 21 years of age are eligible to apply and they would be inducted for a four-year tenure.
- It allows 25% of them to be granted regular service subsequently.
Supreme Court refuses to entertain plea by doctors to postpone NEET-PG 2023
The petitioners argued that the exam should be scheduled closer to the counselling date because there was a six-month gap between the exam on March 5 and the internship cut-off date of August 11.
The Supreme Court has refused to postpone the NEET-PG 2023 exam, scheduled for March 5, 2023. A Bench of Justices S. Ravindra Bhat and Dipankar Datta declined to entertain petitions filed by 20 doctors seeking a postponement of the exam date. The Court’s decision came after a nearly hour-long hearing.
Importance of NEET-PG Exam Date for Medical Interns
- The Centre, represented by Additional Solicitor General Aishwarya Bhati, filed a status report on Friday.
- According to the report, 2.09 lakh doctors have registered for the exam. Of these, 1,76,427 will complete their internship by March 31, 2023, the initial cut-off date for completing the mandatory internship programme.
- Another 27, 232 candidates will complete their internship by June 30, 2023, and only 5,370 candidates will be left to complete their internship by August 11, the current cut-off date for completion of the internship.
Mandatory Internship Programme
- A 365-day medical internship is a prerequisite to qualify for PG seats. The doctors seeking a postponement of the NEET-PG 2023 exam had argued that there was a six-month gap between the exam on March 5 and the internship cut-off date of August 11.
- They had contended that the exam should be held closer to the counselling date, which would give them more time to study.
- They also questioned the need to have the exam in March when many of them, especially candidates from States like Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh, would complete their internship only in July.
- Ms Bhati, representing the Centre, submitted that the exam was usually held in January and the government and the National Board of Examinations were trying to bring its schedule back on track.
- She argued that the schedule for holding NEET-PG 2023 was notified in September 2022, almost six months before the actual conduct of the exam.
- Any delay in the conduct of the exam would cause “unwanted inconvenience” to other candidates.
- Admit cards had already been issued, and there were no alternative dates available in the future if the exam was delayed.
- The examination is scheduled to be held in 277 cities at 902 test centres across the country.
Counselling and Participation
- Ms Bhati also submitted that the counselling for the 2023-2024 session would commence on July 15.
- Approximately 98% of the participating doctors would have completed their internship by the time the counselling begins on July 15, 2023.
- The remaining candidates who would complete their internship after July 15 and be eligible to participate in the counselling process would be allowed provisionally to participate in the counselling and would be dealt with on a case-by-case basis.
- The NEET-PG exam is crucial for medical interns, and its date is significant for those who wish to apply for PG seats.
- The Court’s decision to refuse the postponement of the exam date may have come as a disappointment to some.
- However, the government’s stand that the schedule for holding NEET-PG 2023 was notified six months before the actual conduct of the exam seems reasonable, given the number of candidates involved and the various logistics required for conducting the exam.
Please maintain the Sanctity of Order: SC to MoD
The apex court came down heavily on the Ministry Of Defense over OROP
Supreme Court quenched Ministry of Defense over January 20 communication regarding payment of arrears of One Rank-One Pension (OROP) in installments to eligible pensioners of the armed forces. The apex Court gave the verdict last year on the plea moved by Indian Ex-servicemen. It now directed the Ministry of Defence to maintain the sanctity of Judicial Order.
Hon’ble Chief Justice D. Y Chandrachud taking the exception to the letter given by the Secretary of Defense, directed him to file a personal affidavit explaining his position. The Ministry can either withdraw the application or Court would issue a contempt notice.
Additional Solicitor General N Venkataraman told the court that the Ministry should be given time to carry out the exercise as per the court’s order. The Apex Court has put the matter on hearing after the Holi Vacation.
One Rank One Pension
One Rank One Pension (OROP), or “same pension, for same rank, for the same length of service, irrespective of the date of retirement”, is a longstanding demand of the Indian armed forces and veterans. The Government on the face of mounting protest and resentment among veterans announced, during September 2015, that it would implement the new pension scheme, commonly referred to as One rank One Pension or OROP.
Contempt of Court
Contempt of court, often referred to simply as “contempt”, is the crime of being disobedient to or disrespectful towards the court of law and its officers in the form of behavior that opposes or defies the authority, justice, and dignity of the court. Civil and Criminal are two types of Contempt.
About Chief Justice D. Y Chandrachud
The Chief Justice of India is the chief judge of the Supreme Court of India as well as the highest-ranking officer of the Indian Judiciary. Dhananjaya Yeshwant Chandrachud is an Indian judge serving as the 50th and current Chief Justice of India. He was educated at Delhi University and Harvard University before practising for Sullivan & Cromwell and in the Bombay High Court. He became a Judge at the Bombay High Court and then the Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court.
Ministry of Defense
The Ministry of Defence is charged with coordinating and supervising all agencies and functions of the government relating directly to national security and the Indian Armed Forces. Presently, Mr. Rajnath Singh is the Minister of Defense.
Appointment and Resignations
Khushbu Sundar nominated as member of National Commission for Women
The actor turned politician is presently a member of the BJP’s national executive committee
Khushbu Sundar, a former actress and current member of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s National Executive, has been nominated as a member of the National Commission for Women (NCW).
According to a notification issued by the Union Ministry Of Women And Child Development on February 24, Khushbu will serve as an NCW member for three years from the date of assumption of charge. The NCW is a statutory body of the Government of India that advises the government on all policy matters affecting women.
Annamalai congratulates Khushbu on her appointment to NCW
- K. Annamalai, the Tamil Nadu president of the Bharatiya Janata Party, took to Twitter to congratulate Khushbu Sundar on her appointment to the NCW.
- He said that it was a recognition of her relentless pursuit and fight for women’s rights.
- Khushbu has been an outspoken advocate for the safety and welfare of women, and her appointment to the NCW reflects her commitment to these issues.
Khushbu’s background and career in politics
- Khushbu Sundar’s rise to fame in the Tamil movie industry led to a successful career in politics.
- Her 2005 remarks on premarital sex caused controversy and were cleared by the Supreme Court in 2010.
- Khushbu joined the DMK in 2010 but faced criticism during her tenure.
- She switched to Congress in 2014 and campaigned for the party in the 2016 Assembly polls.
Khushbu’s advocacy for women’s rights
- Despite her frequent shifts in political allegiance, Khushbu Sundar has remained an advocate for the safety and welfare of women.
- She has been known for her outspoken views on a range of issues affecting women and has often courted controversy as a result.
- Her appointment to the National Commission for Women is a reflection of her commitment to these issues, and she is expected to use her platform to further advance the cause of women’s rights in India.
Empowering Women: The Role and Powers of India’s National Commission for Women
- In 1992, the National Commission for Women was established as a statutory body under the National Commission Act 1990.
- Its primary mandate is to review constitutional safeguards for women in the country and recommend measures to address inequalities through redressal mechanisms and legislative action.
- The commission advises the government on policies and laws to safeguard women’s rights, and it has the authority of a civil court.
- The first commission, chaired by Jayanti Patnaik, was formed on January 31, 1992, and Alok Rawat IAS was the first male member to join the NCW.
World NGO Day 2023: Celebrating the Significant Role of Non-Governmental Organizations
February 27 is marked as World NGO Day, celebrated to recognise and honour the objective of contributing to society and these organisations
NGOs, short for Non-governmental organisations, play a critical role in supporting various causes to contribute to society, especially for underprivileged people. To acknowledge and honour the significant role of NGOs, World NGO Day is globally observed on February 27 every year. The day recognises the selfless acts and sacrifices of NGO employees and their contributions to making the world a better place.
The History of World NGO Day 2023
- The observation of World NGO Day started in 2009 by Marcis Liors Skadmanis, who ran a social business.
- The 12 countries of the Baltic Sea NGO Forum proposed and recognised World NGO Day as an official holiday in 2010.
- International NGO Day was first observed on February 27, 2014, and later received recognition from the European Union, the United Nations, and other international organisations.
What is an NGO and Its Significance?
- NGOs are voluntary, non-profit citizens’ groups established at international, national, and local levels to address various issues and promote the welfare of people.
- They are also known as non-profit organisations (NPOs), civil society organisations (CSOs), charitable organisations, membership organisations, charities, or the third sector.
The Relevance of World NGO Day 2023
- World NGO Day 2023 aims to:
- raise public awareness of NGOs globally,
- recognise their contributions, and
- encourage others to join the cause.
- It provides an opportunity to honour charitable people who assist NGO success worldwide and to showcase interests from the founding members to staff, volunteers, and regular donors.
- This day is also a chance to raise awareness of worthy causes, particularly humanitarian ones, and make it easier for others to participate in fundraising or volunteering.
How do NGOs Fund Their Operations?
NGOs manage to fund their organisations through product sales, grants, membership fees, private donations, and occasionally voluntarily given donations from the government. The government is not part of NGOs’ operations.
The Theme of World NGO Day 2023
- The theme of World NGO Day 2023 is “the role and influence of NGOs in advancing human rights, addressing social and environmental challenges, and achieving sustainable development goals.”
- The day brings together volunteers and supporters worldwide to honour and celebrate the goals and contributions of non-profit organisations around the world.
The Importance of NGO Internships for Law Students
- NGOs offer invaluable opportunities for every law student to gain insight into the realities of society, particularly the aspects that are often overlooked by government agencies. This is why it is highly recommended to pursue an NGO internship as your first internship.
- NGOs are typically involved in various initiatives such as awareness programs, surveys, and media demonstrations, which can help develop your leadership skills and shape you into a future leader.
- However, it’s important to note that working with NGOs may not lead to significant financial gain, unlike other sectors of law that provide an easier route to earning money.
- Nonetheless, the sense of fulfilment you will experience is priceless, making interning at an NGO a rewarding experience.
- By interning at NGOs, you become an active participant in society, driven to make a difference in the current scenario.
Awards and Recognitions
SAG Awards 2023: Ke Huy Quan becomes first Asian male to win film acting SAG
These awards were held to honour the year’s best acting performances.
On Sunday, 29th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards were held at the Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles. These awards were held to honor the year’s best acting performances. In these awards, actor Ke Huy Quan has won the Best Supporting actor award for his role as Waymond Wang in the film “Everything Everywhere All at Once.”
About Ke Huy Quan
- His win at the 29th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards makes him the first Asian male to win a film acting award at the annual guild ceremony since its inception in 1994.
- He is also the second Asian actor to win any individual SAG prize in either film or television one year after Squid Game‘s Lee Jung-jae won for male actor in a drama series.
Speech of Ke Huy Quan
“This is a really emotional moment for me. Recently, I was told that if I would win tonight, I would become the very first Asian actor to win in this category. When I heard this, I quickly realised that this moment no longer belongs to just me. It also belongs to everyone who has asked for change. When I stepped away from acting, it’s because there were so few opportunities.”
28th February 2023
Indian govt made significant efforts to detect, disrupt, degrade operations of terrorist organisations: US report
Terrorism has affected several parts of India such as the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), the northeastern States and parts of central India.
As per the U.S. Bureau of Counterterrorism’s Country Reports on Terrorism 2021, the Indian Government has made significant efforts to detect, disrupt, and degrade the operations of terrorist organizations.
Country Reports on Terrorism 2021
Terrorism has affected several parts of India such as the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), the northeastern States and parts of central India. Some of the active terrorist groups in India are:
- Hizbul Mujahideen,
- Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, and
- Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh
Joint Working Group
- In October 2021, the US and India held the 18th meeting of the Counterterrorism Joint Working Group.
- In November 2021, India hosted the second Quad counterterrorism tabletop exercise along with Australia and Japan.
- India responds promptly to U.S. requests for information related to terrorism investigations and makes efforts to mitigate threats.
- India takes Collaborative efforts to disrupt terrorist travel and alerts are issued to U.S. authorities for possible threats in the United States and against U.S. interests.
- In 2021, 153 terrorist attacks were reported in India’s Jammu and Kashmir which caused 274 deaths where 193 were terrorists.
Measures taken by India
- It expanded the number of State-level Multi-Agency Centers to strengthen sharing of intelligence among State and federal agencies.
- India implemented UNSCR 2396 by using watch lists, implementing biographic and biometric screening at ports of entry, and prioritising information sharing.
- The U.S. and Indian governments have committed to collaborating on improving border security and information-sharing capabilities.
- India is implementing dual-screen X-raying for cargo screening at airport locations.
- India has taken significant law enforcement actions.
About National Intelligence Agency
- It was established in the year 2008 and its headquarters is in New Delhi.
- In September 2021, NIA investigated 37 cases related to ISIS and arrested 168 people.
- NIA has also investigated 9 cases of possible terror funding.
- To prevent the radicalization, the Indian Army runs schools, training courses, recruitment drivers, medical camps and emergency services in Jammy and Kashmir.
10 yrs post-retirement, a life-size statue of Sachin Tendulkar at Wankhede
Sachin Tendulkar retired a decade ago and played his last game for India in the Wankhede Stadium.
There are plans to install a life-size statue of Sachin Tendulkar inside the Wankhede Stadium. Sachin Tendulkar retired a decade ago and played his last game for India in the Wankhede Stadium. There has also been a speculation that if everything does not work out well, the inauguration of the statue may be delayed until the 50 over World Cup planned later this year.
“The statue will be unveiled on April 23. It will be the legend’s 50th birthday.”
Statement of the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA)
Amol Kale, President of the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) has said that-
“It will be the first statue in Wankhede Stadium, we will decide where it will be placed.”
“He (Tendulkar) is a Bharat Ratna and everyone knows what he has done for cricket. As he turns 50, it will be a small token of appreciation from the MCA. I spoke to him three weeks ago and his consent was received.”
Cricketers honored in Wankhede Stadium
- Sachin Tendulkar already has a stand named after him at Wankhede Stadium.
- Sunil Gavaskar, former Indian Captain has also been honored by MCA with a corporate box.
- Dilip Vengsarkar, batsman has also been honored with a stand named after him.
Other Honours given to the Players
- There are wax statues of several players with stands named after them in their respective state associations.
- Many former cricketers have their statues at Madame Tussauds in London.
- A life-like statue of Shane Warne at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Statement of Share Warne in regards of the Statue
“It’s a great honour, it’s a bit weird seeing yourself up there but I’m very proud,” Warne had said at its unveiling in 2011. “It’s 300 kilos, that statue! it’s pretty life-like when I play!”
About Sachin Tendulkar
- He has played 200 Test matches, 463 one-day internationals, and one T20 for India.
- His record of most centuries (100) and most runs in international cricket (34,357) still stands tall and unbroken.
About Mumbai Cricket Association
The Mumbai Cricket Association is the governing body for cricket in Mumbai and surrounding regions such as Thane and Navi Mumbai. Its headquarter is situated at Cricket centre in Churchgate, Mumbai. It governs Mumbai cricket team and organizes, sanctions cricket tournaments in Mumbai district. Its current President is Mr. Amol Kale.
Nirmala Sitharaman flagged off several NABARD programmes in Sikkim
She emphasized Vibrant Villages programme aims to ensure facilities like telecom and internet in border villages
Finance Minister, Mrs Nirmala Sitharaman flagged off several programmes of NABARD in Gangtok, Sikkim today. The Union Minister was on a two-day visit to the state.
On the first day, the minister attended a Budget outreach programme in Gangtok. She stressed the central government’s focus on reaching the last eligible beneficiary of welfare schemes and services. Later, she interacted with students and encouraged them to inculcate the spirit of innovation and unite by rising above creed, caste, religion and culture to make India a developed nation by 2047.
She said that she would visit Lachen in Mangan district and border villages to ensure that all central government schemes are being implemented to achieve their intended outcomes. She would also visit these areas to ensure that the targets proposed under the Vibrant Villages programme are fulfilled. The minister will attend a public interaction at Lachen Dzumsa.
National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) is an apex regulatory body for the overall regulation of RRBs (Regional Rural Banks) and apex Cooperative Banks in India. It is under Ministry of Finance, Government of India. It was established in 1982, current Chairman is Shri. Shaji K V The bank works on “matters concerning policy, planning, and operations in the field of credit for agriculture and other economic activities in rural areas in India”.
Vibrant Villages programme
It is a Centrally sponsored scheme of the Government of India with a financial allocation of Rs. 4800 crore. The main aim is comprehensive development of villages of blocks on the northern border thus improving the quality of life of people living in identified border villages. Primary features include connectivity with the all-weather road, drinking water, 24×7 electricity – Solar and wind energy to be given focused attention, mobile and internet connectivity.
Ministry of Finance
It is a ministry within the Government of India concerned with the economy of India, serving as the Treasury of India. It concerns itself with taxation, financial legislation, financial institutions, capital markets, centre and state finances, and the Union Budget. R. K. Shanmukham Chetty was the first Finance Minister of independent India.
Capital – Gangtok
Chief Minister- Prem Singh Tamang
Governor- Lakshman Acharya
Nitish Government tabled 2.61 lakhs crore Budget
The Finance Minister of Bihar said there has been slight increase in the state share of central taxes.
Bihar Government has presented Budget of Rs. 2.61 Lakh crore. The Budget of Nitish Kumar government highlights the state’s strong financial position supported by indicators such as fiscal deficit staying below the prescribed limit.
Budget 2023-24 highlights:
- proposed budget expenditure of Rs 2,61,885.4
- Fiscal deficit remind at 3.78% of State GDP
- Increase in State’s share in Central taxes
The Bihar government emphasized that the budget reveals the state is in good shape. However, flagging the concern of a drop in grant in aid from the central government.
It can be accessed here at : Bihar Budget
Budget is not a term in the constitution but “Annual Financial Statements” has been defined under Article 202 of the Constitution of India. Due to the Federal system, states presents their own budget in their respective assemblies. As the financial year comes to an end on March 31, it is the ideal time for all the governments to table their budget estimates. Financial year in India is observed from April 1- March 31.
Fiscal Deficit – It is the most used term in budget parlance. It is that part of budget which the government borrow to finance its expenditure in the financial year. It is a liability on state shoulders.
Bihar is a state in eastern India. It is the second largest state by population. Bihar borders Uttar Pradesh to its west, Nepal to the north, the northern part of West Bengal to the east, and with Jharkhand to the south. The Bihar plain is split by the river Ganges, which flows from west to east. The present Chief Minister is Nitsh Kumar and Governor is Rajendra Arlekar. In Ancient India, it is the place where we find Nalanda University, Mauryan Empire, home of Ashoka and many others.
Elon Musk returns to the top, becomes richest person on the planet again
He lost his position as the world’s richest person in December 2022 as Tesla shares declined
As Tesla Stock prices surged again, Elon Musk has reclaimed his title of being the world’s richest person. He lost his position as the world’s richest person in December 2022 as Tesla shares declined and was replaced by Louis Vuitton CEO Bernard Arnault.
About Elon Musk
- His net worth now stands as USD 187 billion and at the beginning of the year, his net worth was USD 137 billion.
- Since September 2021, he has been the world’s richest person and before him, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos held the spot.
- In the beginning of the year 2023, Elon Musk had been recognized by Guinness World Records for breaking the world record for losing the most money in history.
- Musk became the largest shareholder of Tesla by investing a gigantic amount of USD 6.5 million.
- In 2008 he assumed his role as the CEO and product architect of the company in 2008.
- He sold large chunks of his Tesla shares in 2022, to buy twitter and later on to cope with the losses of his brand-new acquisitions.
Press release by the Guinness World Records
The press release by Guinness World Records also stated that “Although the exact figure is almost impossible to ascertain, Musk’s total losses far surpass the previous record of $58.6 billion, set by Japanese tech investor Masayoshi Son in 2000.”
About the changes done my Elon Musk in Twitter
- He fired the company’s then CEO- Parag Agrawal along with other top executives.
- He did mass lay off and at that time the majority of Twitter staff has either resigned if not being laid off.
- He reduced the workforce in Twitter to around 2300 people.
- He reduced the monetization infrastructure team to less than 8 people from 30 people.
World’s Richest Person
- Elon Musk – US
- Bernard Arnault- France
- Gautam Adani- India
- Jeff Bezos- US
India’s Richest Person
- Gautam Adani- Adani Groups
Canadian govt blocks TikTok from official devices
Canada’s chief information officer has determined that it presents an unacceptable level of risk to privacy and security.
On Monday, the Canadian Government banned TikTok from all of its official phones and other devices. This step has been taken by the Canadian government citing concerns about data protection.
Official Government Statement
“Effective Tuesday, the TikTok application will be removed from government-issued mobile devices. Users of these devices will also be blocked from downloading the application in the future.”
“Canada’s chief information officer has determined that it presents an unacceptable level of risk to privacy and security.”
“TikTok’s data collection methods provide considerable access to the contents of the phone.”
- The parent company of TikTok is ByteDance, which is a Chinese company.
- Due to the increasing fears about how much access Beijing has to user data, the company is facing increasing Western Scrutiny in recent months.
Ban in other countries
- Last week, the European Commission banned the app from its equipment.
- Similar moves have been following in the United States.
- In 2020, India banned the app entirely citing a law that allows the government to block websites and apps in the interest of the country’s sovereignty and integrity.
Statement of the TikTok Spokesperson
“The Canadian decision to block TikTok was “curious” as it was taken “without citing any specific security concern” or consultation with the company.”
Relationship between China and Canada
- The relationship between both the countries have deteriorated due to Canada’s arrest on a U.S. warrant of a Huawei senior executive in 2018 and China’s retaliatory detention of two Canadian Nationals.
President- Xi Jinping
Prime Minister- Justin Trudeau
Currency- Canadian Dollar
Why US hails India for ‘significant efforts’ in report on counter-terrorism
Why US hails India for ‘significant efforts’ in report on counter-terrorism
To detect, disrupt, and degrade operations of terrorist organisations
U.S. Bureau of Counterterrorism’s Country Reports on Terrorism India that,”The Indian government made significant efforts to detect, disrupt, and degrade operations of terrorist organisations.”
What Report says:
Terrorism affected the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), the northeastern States, and parts of central India. The report further says, the terrorist groups active in India. A shift was observed in terrorists’ tactics in 2021. They shifted towards attacks on civilians and greater reliance on IEDs, including an explosive attack using drones on an air force base.
According to the report, India responds promptly to U.S. requests for information related to terrorism investigations. Efforts taken to mitigate threats in response to U.S. information. Collaborative efforts to disrupt terrorist travel continue. Alerts are issued to U.S. authorities for possible threats in the United States and against U.S. interests.
What are the Indian Government efforts:
India expanded the number of State-level Multi-Agency Centers to strengthen sharing of intelligence among State and Federal agencies.
According to the official report, India implemented UNSCR 2396 by using watch lists, implementing biographic and biometric screening at ports of entry, and prioritising information sharing.
Pursuant to a bilateral arrangement, the U.S. and Indian governments have committed to collaborating on improving border security and information-sharing capabilities.
Significant law enforcement actions by India include a National Intelligence Agency (NIA) Special Court sentencing.
India as member of FATF:
India is a member of FATF, the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering, and the Eurasian Group. India’s Financial Intelligence Unit-India is part of the Egmont Group. The NIA investigated nine cases of possible terror funding, according to the US report. The Indian Army runs schools, training courses, recruitment drives, medical camps, and emergency services in Jammu and Kashmir.
About US Bureau of counter-terrorism:
Jurisdiction: United States
Young Professional Scheme visas for UK Graduates
The scheme has been launched simultaneously in London and New Delhi, available from February 28 till March 2
The Indian High Commission opened the visa application process for UK nationals to apply for the new Young Professionals Scheme (YPS). Indian and British nationals aged between 18yrs and 30yrs can apply to live and work in either country for upto two years. There are certain criteria for applicants applying for a visa under the scheme, including a graduate degrees and sufficient funds. Young citizens of India and the UK can visit each other for up to two years at a time.
The updated details are available on the Indian High Commission website. The application is to be made under the E-1 Visa through the VFS Global visa service provider, indicating the purpose as “application under the India-UK YPS program”. As per the website, successful applicants can take up employment as an incidental part of their stay within specific sectors. Those who would be coming to India are required to register with Foreign Regional Registration Office.
The scheme had come at a time when the British High Commission in New Delhi opened its ballot for the first set of 2,400 visas available to eligible Indians under the reciprocal scheme. The ballot, which is free to enter opens today and closes on March 2.
India has a high commission in London and two consulates-general in Birmingham and Edinburgh. The United Kingdom has a high commission in New Delhi and six deputy high commissions in Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, and Kolkata. Both countries are full members of the Commonwealth of Nations. The growth of India’s multinational companies contributed greatly to UK’s business and economy. Also, they have employed more than 105,000 people in the UK. Tata Group alone employed over 63,760 people in the UK.
Currency- Pound Sterling
Prime Minister- Rishi Sunak
Union Minister Parshottam Rupala inaugurates Grand start-up Conclave in Hyderabad
The Union Minister for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Parshottam Rupala, inaugurated the ‘Grand Start-Up Conclave’ in Animal Husbandry and Diary at a Convention Centre in Hyderabad.
The event was attended by Ministers of State for I&B, Dr L Murugan and MoS Animal Husbandry, Dr Sanjeev Kumar Balyan, along with the State Minister for Animal Husbandry and Fisheries, T. Srinivas Yadav.
Technology intervention is necessary for the development of Animal Husbandry in the country
- In his address, Mr Rupala emphasized the importance of technology intervention in the development of animal husbandry in the country.
- He also highlighted the initiative taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for startups in every sector, including the need for a startup for farmers of Animal Husbandry.
- The Minister emphasized the importance of innovation and entrepreneurship in the sector.
Animal Husbandry is a sunrise sector
- Dr L. Murugan, Minister of State for I&B, spoke about the significance of animal husbandry as a sunrise sector.
- He highlighted the allocation made in the Amrit Kaal budget for infrastructure development in the Animal Husbandry unit.
- The Minister also mentioned the use of the latest technology in Animal Husbandry and Fisheries to improve production.
Promoting existing and emerging startups in the livestock, dairy, and animal husbandry sectors in the country
- The ‘Grand Start-Up Conclave aims to promote existing and emerging startups in the livestock, dairy, and animal husbandry sectors in the country.
- The event brings together entrepreneurs, investors, and industry experts to share their ideas.
- The conclave includes:
- showcasing selected startups,
- pitch fest,
- a buyer-seller meet, and
- a workshop for startups to train the early-stage startups operating in the Animal Husbandry and Dairying sectors.
In conclusion, the ‘Grand Start-Up Conclave’ provides a platform for startups in the Animal Husbandry and Dairying sectors to showcase their products and services and connect with potential investors and industry experts.
The event highlights the importance of innovation and entrepreneurship in the sector and the need for technology intervention to achieve sustainable development.
The Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries Department
The Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries Department has three separate wings headed by the Secretary to Government. He acts as the administrative head of the department and an advisor to the Hon’ble Ministers of the following three departments on all matters of policy formulation and administration relating to these departments.
1. Animal Husbandry Department
- Animal Husbandry plays a major role in providing veterinary health services and in improving the production potentialities of livestock and poultry reared in the State.
- The Department is also involved in various veterinary extension activities to enlighten the farmers on the best animal husbandry practices.
2. Fisheries Department
- The Fisheries sector has been recognized as a powerful income and employment generator to improve the socio-economic condition of the marine and inland fishermen in the State.
- Tamil Nadu with its 1076 km of coastline is a leading State in fish production.
3. Dairy Development Department
- Tamil Nadu is one of the frontline States in milk production, with daily milk production of roughly around 127 lakh litres per day.
- TCMPF Ltd. popularly known as “Aavin” handles the commercial activities of the Department such as milk procurement, processing, chilling, packing and sale of milk to the consumers, etc.
- The ultimate objective of this Department is to empower the target groups to improve their socio-economic condition by improving milk production in the State.
India shocks England to win Women’s Snooker World Cup
India ‘A’ exhibited skill and determination to overcome established players on the tour to lift the title.
India A, represented by Amee Kamani and Anupama Ramachandran, defeated England A 4-3 in the Women’s Snooker World Cup to win the title at Hi-End Snooker Club. Despite being unranked on the tour, the Indian duo exhibited skill and determination, overcoming established players like 12-time world champion Reanne Evans and world number four Rebecca Kenna.
Kamani is proud to make India proud
- Amee Kamani expressed her pride in making her nation India proud after winning the Women’s Snooker World Cup with her teammate Ramachandran.
- Kamani added that she aims to keep winning every world title and that the hard work has paid off.
- The duo only decided to enter the team event shortly before the entry deadline, looking to gain valuable match practice ahead of the upcoming World Championship.
Ramachandran enjoys winning debut in the Women’s Snooker World Cup
Anupama Ramachandran was delighted to win the Women’s Snooker World Cup in her first tournament with World Women’s Snooker. The Indian snooker player initially found it challenging to adjust to the tables, but she managed to enjoy the game, going shot by shot, and that helped her succeed.
World Women’s Snooker Championship
The World Women’s Snooker Championship will begin in Thailand on Tuesday and run until March 4.
Supreme Court refuses to entertain Manish Sisodia’s plea challenging CBI arrest, advises him to approach Delhi HC
The Supreme Court declined to entertain the plea by Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia against his arrest by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the Delhi Excise Policy scam. The court asked Sisodia to approach Delhi High Court or trial court to quash the FIR against him or obtain bail.
CJI agrees to hear Sisodia’s plea at 3:50 PM
Earlier this morning, Sisodia’s plea was mentioned for an urgent hearing at the Chief Justice of India’s bench. The CJI agreed to hear the case at 3:50 PM, despite initially informing the lawyers that they have remedies before the High Court.
Sisodia’s custody extended by five days
On February 26, the CBI picked up Sisodia for his suspected links with alleged irregularities in the Delhi excise policy. His custody was extended by five days by a CBI court the next day.
Sisodia named as an accused in CBI’s FIR
Sisodia, who also holds the education portfolio in the Delhi government, is one of the 15 accused named by CBI in its First Information Report (FIR) registered on August 17, 2022.
Probe initiated following recommendation from Lieutenant Governor of Delhi
The agency initiated the probe following a recommendation from Lieutenant Governor of Delhi VK Saxena, who had alleged irregularities in the formulation and implementation of the now-withdrawn excise policy. CBI Director Subodh Jaiswal reached the CBI office. Sisodia underwent a medical examination.
National Science Day is observed on 28 February, 2023.
This Day is celebrated to commemorate the announcement of the Discovery of the “Raman Effect”.
Under the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1986, the Government of India has designated February 28 as National Science Day to commemorate the announcement of the Discovery of the “Raman Effect.” The theme for this year’s celebration is “Global Science for Global Wellbeing.” In 1930, CV Raman won the Nobel Prize for his discovery of the Raman Effect.
Discovery of CV Raman
- Raman conducted a simple experiment and discovered that when a stream of light passes through a liquid, a fraction of the light scattered by the liquid is of a different color. This discovery has become the subject of more than 700 papers in the first 7 years after its announcement.
- He was fascinated by the sea’s deep blue color. Dissatisfied with the then-accepted answer.
- He soon found out that the color of the sea was the result of the scattering of sunlight by the water molecules. Fascinated by the phenomenon of light-scattering, Raman and his collaborators in Calcutta began to conduct extensive scientific experiments on the matter.
- The Raman Effect- It refers to the phenomenon in which when a stream of light passes through a liquid, a fraction of the light scattered by the liquid is of a different color. This happens due to the change in the wavelength of light that occurs when a light beam is deflected by molecules.
About CV Raman
- He was born in 1888 to a family of Sanskrit scholars in Trichy (Tiruchirapalli), Madras.
- He received a BA degree from Presidency College in Madras at the age of 16 and at the age of 18 years he got published in the Philosophical Magazine: this was the first research paper ever published by Presidency College.
- In 1907, he got married and settled down in Calcutta as an assistant accountant general and he later on began after-hours research at the Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science (IACS).
- Raman raised the profile of IACS, doing some award-winning research as well as conducting public demonstrations with charisma.
- At the age of 29, he finally resigned from his civil services job and took up a professorship in Presidency College, Calcutta.
- In 1921, he had gained a solid reputation as a top scientific mind both in India and in the West.
- CV Raman and KS Krishnan has co-authored their first report to Nature titled- “A New Type of Secondary Radiation” and wrote that-
“60 different liquids had been studied, and all showed the same result – a tiny fraction of scattered light had a different colour than the incident light.”
The importance of the discovery
- Raman’s discovery was crucial for quantum theory, in vogue in the scientific world.
- It is also useful in chemistry, giving birth to a new field known as Raman spectroscopy as a basic analytical tool to conduct nondestructive chemical analysis for both organic and inorganic compounds.
- With the invention of lasers and the capabilities to concentrate much stronger beams of light, the uses of Raman spectroscopy have only ballooned over time.
- This method has a wide variety of applications such as studying art and other objects of cultural importance in a non-invasive fashion to finding drugs hidden inside luggage at customs.
1st March 2023
Axis bank acquired Citibank: Indian Bank Saga
Axis Bank shares rise around 2% on acquisition of Citibank’s Indian consumer business
Current Affairs: In the latest round of merger and acquisition, Axis Bank announced that it had completed the acquisition of Citigroup’s India consumer business from Citibank NA. The acquisition was done at a total of Rs. 11,603 crores. It implies that now Axis Bank will handle all the Citibank’s existing and future business in India. As Axis Banks takes over Citibank, the Citigroup plans to exit retail operations in 13 markets, including India. Effective March 1, 2023, all Citibank India consumer business customers will be Axis Bank customers.
- New Deposit will be based on Axis Bank
- Portfolio management services and Alternative Investment Fund will be under Axis bank.
- Citibank “Global Banking Privilege” will not be available.
What remained the same?
- Bank account number, credit card, and debit card number
- Cheque Book and IIFSC code
- ATM, Internet services, mobile banking, existing services of Citibank
- Insurance Policy
- Home loans and NRI deposits rate
Banks in India
Banks in India play a crucial role in managing finances. It is the institution that deals in accepting deposits and advancing loans. Reserve Bank of India regulates the Banks in India, it is the central bank of the country. Banks are further divided into Commercial and cooperative banks.
The bank was founded on 3 December 1993 as UTI Bank. it is headquartered in Mumbai. The current CEO is Amitabh Chaudhary. Axis Bank has the largest ATM network among private banks in India. It even operates an ATM at one of the world’s highest sites at Thegu, Sikkim at 4,023 meters (13,200 ft) above sea level.
Citibank India is a foreign bank in India with a full-service onshore platform. The Indian headquarters is at Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai. Citi India is supported by a network of around 98 markets across the world. The bank serves close to 2.5 million customers ranging from corporate houses, multinationals operating in India, SMEs, self-employed entrepreneurs, households, and individuals.
1,300 years old Buddhist Stupa : Odisha
Khondalite stones were excavated
Current Affairs: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has found a 1,300-year-old stupa in Odisha’s Jajpur district from where Khondalite stones were excavated for the project around the Jagannath temple in Puri.
What exactly Khondalite stones:
- Foliated metamorphic rock. Also called in India as Bezwada Gneiss and Kailasa Gneiss.
- Stones were supplied for the beautification project around the 12th Century Shree Jagannath Temple in Puri.
- Stones were widely used in ancient temple complexes
What found in Archaeological Survey of India (ASI):
Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) found 1,300-year-old stupa.
- archaeological research and protection of the cultural heritage of the nation under the Ministry of Culture.
- Maintenance of ancient monuments and archaeological sites and remains of national importance
- It regulates all archaeological activities in the country as per the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act.
Subhendu Bhuyan, member of the Jajpur Cultural Council said:
“Those who approved the plan for carrying out quarrying at Akhuapada should have applied their mind. Knowing well that many massive Buddha statues were discovered from Sukhuapada and preserved in the museum inside Lalitgiri archaeological site, they should not have allowed such big mining machines to be deployed there.”
The stupa could be 4.5 metres tall and initial assessment showed it may belong to the 7th or 8th century.
BIMSTEC Energy Centre : India hosts first meeting of Governing Board
BIMSTEC Energy Centre : India hosts first meeting of Governing Board
Current Affairs: The central government hosted the first meeting of the governing board of BIMSTEC Energy Centre (BEC) in Bengaluru.
What the Ministry of Power said:
“India’s ‘Neighbourhood first’ and ‘Act East’ policies were highlighted during the meeting and a snapshot of areas where BIMSTEC countries can learn and adapt from each other was also presented,” the Ministry of Power said.”
Which countries have active participants:
The meeting witnessed active participation from member countries Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka.
Ashost, India made a presentation on establishing BIMSTEC Energy Centre (BEC) in the premises of the Central Power Research Institute (CPRI), Bengaluru.
Ministry on nomination of first CEA:
“Ghanshyam Prasad, chairperson, CEA, was nominated as the first executive director of the Energy Centre. The meeting considered and finalised the note on ‘Host Country Agreement between the Government of Republic of India and the BIMSTEC Secretariat’. The same was recommended to the seventh meeting of BIMSTEC Permanent Working Committee for consideration
Countries approach towards meeting:
“The member countries appreciated India’s efforts for organising the first meeting of the governing board of BIMSTEC Energy Centre. The countries expressed that such meetings of the BIMSTEC will happen more frequently .” The Ministry said.
About BIMSTEC Energy Centre:
Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand ( BIST- EC) – Economic Cooperation was formed at a meeting in June 1997
Myanmar was admitted in Dec 1997 and the organisation was renamed as BIMST-EC
Exercise Shinyuu Maitri: Indian Air Force Transport Aircraft Exercise With The Japanese Air Self Defence Force
The Indian Air Force (IAF) is participating in Exercise Shinyuu Maitri with the Japan Air Self-Defence Force (JASDF). The exercise is being organised on the sidelines of the Indo-Japan Joint Army Exercise, Dharma Guardian, which is being conducted from 13 February 2023 to 02 March 2023 at Komatsu, Japan.
- The exercise aims to enhance mutual understanding and interoperability between the two air forces.
- The IAF is participating in Exercise Shinyuu Maitri 23 with one C-17 Globemaster III aircraft.
- The exercise’s first phase includes discussions on transport operations and tactical manoeuvring, followed by the second phase of flying drills by IAF’s C-17 and JASDF C-2 transport aircraft.
Shinyuu Maitri: A Step Forward in Expanding Defense Cooperation between India and Japan
- Exercise Shinyuu Maitri 23 marks a significant step in the expanding defence cooperation between India and Japan.
- The exercise also allows the respective subject matter experts to interact and study each other’s operational philosophies and best practices.
- It comes at a time when the IAF’s heavy lift transport aircraft fleet is also taking part in Exercise Desert Flag VIII in the UAE and Exercise Cobra Warrior in the UK.
Japan and India Deepen Cooperation in Indo-Pacific Region
- The bilateral Shinyu-Maitri-23 transport aircraft exercise between the JASDF and the IAF is being held at the Komatsu Air Base and its surrounding airspace.
- The purpose of the exercise is:
- to improve air transport capability and
- to promote mutual understanding between the two air forces.
- The deployment of IAF C-17 aircraft and personnel for the exercise began on February 28, with the two-day exercise kicking off on March 1.
- The Japan Air Self-Defence Force (JASDF) will be participating with its domestically-developed and manufactured C-2 transport plane from the Miho base.
Strong Defense Ties between India and Japan
- The first Shinyu-Maitri exercise was held at the Air Force Station in Agra in December 2018.
- The forthcoming joint exercise comes close on the heels of last month’s inaugural Veer Guardian-2023 joint Air Exercise at the Hyakuri Air Base, which was a massive success.
- Both countries have hailed the “dramatic expansion” in security and defence ties in recent times, highlighting their commitment to a “common strategic goal” of achieving a free and open Indo-Pacific that is inclusive and resilient, based on the rule of law and free from coercion.
Joint Military Exercise ‘Dharma Guardian’
- The announcement of Shinyu-Maitri-23 comes at a time when troops of the Garhwal Rifles regiment of the Indian Army and an infantry regiment from the Middle Army of the Japan Ground Self-Defence Force (JGSDF) are taking part in the fourth edition of the joint military exercise ‘Dharma Guardian’ being conducted at Camp Imazu in Japan’s Shiga province from February 17 to March 2.
- The annual training event with Japan is crucial and significant in terms of security challenges faced by both nations in the backdrop of the current global situation.
Deepening Strategic Ties between India and Japan
- In another show of deepening strategic ties, two ships of the Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force (JMSDF) made a port call at Kochi last week.
- The joint exercises and visits of defence personnel and equipment have demonstrated the growing cooperation between India and Japan in the security and defence domains.
India and Japan: Strengthening Ties
- India-Japan defence ties have grown significantly over the years through bilateral and multilateral exercises such as Dharma Guardian, Malabar, and MILAN, with the participation of Japan for the first time.
- Tri-service exchanges between the two nations have been institutionalized, and coast guards have had regular annual exchanges since 2006.
- In the India-Japan Vision 2025, both nations have committed to working together for peace and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region and beyond.
Bola Tinubu Wins Presidential vote : Nigeria
He is a former governor of Lagos State and lost the State in Saturday’s election to Obi
Current Affairs: The candidate of the ruling party in Nigeria, Bola Tinubu, was declared the winner and sworn in as the President of Nigeria, Africa. He thanked his supporters and appealed for reconciliation with his rivals, who are already demanding a revolt in Africa’s most populous nation. He will take command of a nation battling Islamic insurgencies in the northeast, armed attacks, homicides and kidnappings, strife between farmers and cattle herders, shortages of cash, fuel and power and enduring corruption.
As per the Independent National Elections Commission (INEC),
- Tinubu has received 8.79 million votes
- Atiku Abubakar received 6.98 million votes.
- Peter Obi received 6.1 million votes.
Statement of Bola Tinubu
“I take this opportunity to appeal to my fellow contestants to let us team up together.”
“It is the only nation we have. It is one country and we must build together.”
Statement of Babafemi Akin
“None of the others matches his record! And I am sure he will do well.”
About Bola Tinubu
He is a former governor of Lagos State and lost the State in Saturday’s election to Obi as Obi drew a strong following among younger voters.
Statement of Senior Adviser on Nigeria for the International Crisis Group, Nnamdi Obasi
“Tinubu will have to strive to win the support of the larger majority who preferred one of the other candidates, particularly the youth, the Christian groups that were opposed to his Muslim-Muslim ticket and Igbos in the South East who again feel denied the presidency.”
“For the onset, Tinubu will have to contend with challenges to his legitimacy, so he’ll need to ensure an inclusive government and focus firmly on rebuilding national cohesion.”
Statement of the Amaka Anku, Africa director at the Eurasia Group Consultancy
“Tinubu clinched victory in part because the opposition vote was split and because his party had the strongest push to get people out to vote.”
Statement of the Nigeria’s current President, Muhammadu Buhari
“Ofcourse, there will be areas that need work to bring further transparency and credibility to the voting procedure. However, none of the issues registered represents a challenge to the freeness and fairness of the elections.”
Both the countries have traditionally warm friendship. India established its diplomatic mission in Nigeria in 1958 and that was two years before Nigeria gained its independence in 1960.
President- Muhammadu Buhari
Currency- Nigerian Naira
Deputy Foreign Minister Kenji Yamada to represent Japan at G20 Foreign Ministers’ meeting in India
Japan is facing backlash and criticism from lawmakers and members of the public on social media.
Kenji Yamada, Deputy Foreign Minister is scheduled to visit New Delhi, India to attend the G20 Foreign Ministers Meeting from March 1 to 3. The Foreign Minister of Japan has announced to skip the G20 Foreign Minister Meeting due to the scheduling conflict.
Statement of Kenji Yamada, Deputy Foreign Minister, Japan
“At this meeting, we will take our position and efforts as Japan, the G7 presidency, on important issues in the current international situation, such as multilateralism, food and energy security, and development cooperation, as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues.”
Foreign Minister of Japan to skipping the G20 Foreign Ministers Meeting
The Foreign Minister of Japan, Yoshimasa Hayashi has announced that he is skipping the G20 meeting due to a scheduling conflict with the Japanese Parliament session.
Effects of the announcement of Foreign Minister of Japan
- Japan is facing backlash and criticism from lawmakers and members of the public on social media.
- As Japan is preparing to host the Group of Seven Summit in May, it has lost an opportunity to showcase leadership.
Statement of the Ruling Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker
Goshi Hosono, a ruling Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker has said that-
“It’s a regrettable decision that means forfeiting a chance to emphasize the importance of the rule of law to the developing countries that take part in G-20.”
About G20 Foreign Ministers Meeting (FMM)
- The Foreign Ministers Meeting of G20 is scheduled to take place from March 1 till March 2, 2023 in New Delhi.
- Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and U.K. Foreign Secretary James Cleverly, China’s Foreign Minister Qin Gang, Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong will be attending this meeting.
- In this meeting PM Modi is scheduled to talk about India’s growing influence globally.
India- Japan Relationship
The friendship between both the countries have a long history related to spiritual affinity and strong cultural and civilizational ties. Both the countries share a global vision of peace, stability and shared prosperity, based on sustainable development. Both India and Japan shared democratic values and commitment to human rights, pluralism, open society, and the rule of law underpin the global partnership between the two countries.
Prime Minister- Fumio Kishida
Currency- The Japanese Yen
Click here to read more on G20 meetings.
The United States has deepened and strengthened its relationship with India, a senior State Department official said Tuesday
India is an incredibly important country in the region: Jessica Lewis
On Tuesday, A senior Department Official said that the United States has deepend and strengthened its relationship with India. Jessica Lewis, Assistant Secretary of State for the Political-Military Bureau has said that India is an incredibly important country in the region.
Statements of the Assistant Secretary of State for the Political-Military Bureau
Jessica Lewis, Assistant Secretary of State for the Political-Military Bureau has said that,
“We have deepened and strengthened our relationship with India, the largest democracy in the world, an incredibly important country in the region, and we are continuing to do so.”
“I think the way we see it is we offer India a choice when it comes to deepening and strengthening their security relationship with us. I feel very good about where that is going. Obviously, they have a long history of course, but I think we are making very good progress on that front.”
“We are seeing countries coming to us and saying look, we may need to diversify in ways that they haven’t before, off Russian equipment. Mainly because they are seeing the failure of Russia and Soviet doctrine in the war, but also raising questions about the equipment that Russia is providing and Russia’s ability to keep providing that equipment.”
“We think that this moment in time presents an opportunity for us to look at the question of how countries are becoming interested in the transition of Russian equipment both for the US and for our partners and allies. It does make sense for us to offer countries a choice. I think that’s how we’re thinking about it. We’re offering countries a choice.”
“There are really strong benefits to having a strong security cooperation relationship with the U.S. that goes beyond just a security cooperation tie and getting the best military equipment in the world.”
Relationship between India and USA
Both the countries enjoy a close relationship and have often been together on issues such as counterterrorism, distrust of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program and Chinese influence in the Indo-Pacific.
About the USA
House of Speaker- Republican Kevin McCarthy
The 46th President- Joseph R. Baiden
Capital of the United States – Washington D.C.
Currency- US Dollars
Important days observed on March 1
Zero Discrimination Day
- Zero Discrimination Day is an annual observance held on March 1st that aims to promote equality, diversity, and inclusion by raising awareness of the negative impact of discrimination on individuals and communities.
- The day is an initiative of the United Nations (UN) and is part of their effort to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), specifically Goal 10, which is to reduce inequality within and among countries.
- Zero Discrimination Day recognizes that discrimination is a violation of human rights and a barrier to achieving a just and equitable society. It calls on individuals, organizations, and governments to take action to end discrimination in all its forms, including discrimination based on age, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, and disability.
- The day serves as a reminder that everyone has the right to live a life free from discrimination and that we all have a role to play in creating a world where diversity is celebrated, and everyone is treated with respect and dignity.
World Civil Defense Day
- World Civil Defense Day is observed annually on March 1. This day is celebrated to raise awareness about the importance of civil defense measures in protecting people and their property from natural disasters, accidents and other emergencies. On this day work of several civil defense organizations have been honored.
- The theme for the year 2023 is “The role of information technology in risk assessment.” The theme for the year 2023 is based on the interest and importance of the role of technical systems, technological applications, and artificial intelligence techniques in determining risks related to civil protection and civil Defence.
- Importance- This day highlights the importance of civil Defence measures undertaken in protecting people and communities from emergencies. It also recognizes the contribution of civil Defence personnel, who work towards ensuring the safety and well-being of their communities.
World Seagrass Day
- World Seagrass day is celebrated annually on March 1. This day is celebrated to raise awareness about seagrass and its important functions in the marine ecosystem.
- The Seagrass are grass-like plants that live close to the sea and are the only flowering plant to grow in the marine environment. It has more than 60 species in the world and is the best carbon sink. These seagrasses also work towards providing food for marine life.
- As per the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), there are nearly 21% of the world’s seagrass which are vulnerable or endangered. The reasons for the vulnerability or endangered species are Pollution, coastal development activities and land based runoffs.
- History- The General Assembly has adopted A/RES/76/265 in May 2022 and proclaimed that 1 March will be celebrated as the World Seagrass Day. This step is taken by the General Assembly, highlighting the urgent need to raise awareness at all levels and to promote and facilitate actions for the conservation of seagrasses in order to contribute to their health and development. These steps were taken by the assembly to enhance the ecosystem services and functions as it is important for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
Appointments and Resignations
Biden appoints two Indian American corporate leaders to his Export Council
The Export Council will be headed by Mark Edin, chairman of Kastle Systems.
Joe Biden, the US President has announced the appointment of the two Indian Americans to his powerful Export Council which is the principal national advisory committee on international trade. On Tuesday, Biden announced a list of members he intended to appoint to the council. The Export Council will be headed by Mark Edin, chairman of Kastle Systems.
Indian-Americans appointed by the US President
- Punit Renjen, the former CEO of Deloitte Consulting and
- Rajesh Subramaniam, CEO and president-elect of FedEx
About the Export Council
Many leaders from the corporate sector, labour, real estate, national security and law have been a part of the President’s Export Council. Some of them are
- Karen S. Lynch, President and CEO of CVS Health;
- John Lawler, the Chief Financial Officer of Ford;
- Gareth Joyce, CEO at Proterra;
- Brett Hart, President of United Airlines;
- Beth Ford, President and CEO of Land O’Lakes; and
- Qualcomm CEO Cristiano R. Amon.
Statement from the White House
“The Council advises the President on government policies and programmes that affect US trade performance; promotes export expansion; and provides a forum for discussing and resolving trade-related problems among the business, industrial, agricultural, labour, and government sectors.”
About Punit Renjen
- He retired as Deloitte Global CEO after having served in the role since June 2015.
- He is deeply committed towards advancing diversity and inclusion at Deloitte through measurable actions towards gender balance.
- In 2022, he was recognised by the Economic Times as “Global Indian of the Year.”
- The Carnegie Corporation of America as one of 34 “Great Immigrants. Great Americans.”
- He received the Global Achievement Award by the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum in 2021.
- He has also received the award “The Oregon History Makers Medal”, in the year 2020.
About Raj Subramaniam
- He is responsible for providing strategic direction for all FedEx Operating companies as the President and CEO of FedEx.
- He chairs the 5 person Executive Committee which plans and executes the corporation’s strategic business activities.
- He also chairs the FedEx Strategic Management Committee.
- Subramaniam serves on the board of directors of FedEx Corporation, the Procter & Gamble Company, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s China Center Advisory Board, FIRST, U.S.-India Strategic Partnership Forum, and the US-China Business Council, and a member of the US-India CEO Forum.
- Achievements- He has received the award of the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award
Rajesh Malhotra, appointed as the new Principal DG of PIB
The Indian Information Service officer will take the charge as head of PIB after Satyendra Prakash
Press Information Bureau has got its new leader. Rajesh Malhotra, a 1989 batch IIS officer is appointed as Principal Director General of the Press Information Bureau. He has been succeeded by Satyandra Prakash, who has been superannuated on Tuesday. Mr. Malhotra has 30 years of operational experience in planning and implementing media and communication strategies for the Election Commission of India along with various Central ministries and departments. He was associated with the Election Commission of India for the past 21 years as in charge of Media and communication.
Along with this, he has played a crucial role during the pandemic in steering the policy communication regarding Atmanirbhar package of Finance Ministry.
Press Bureau Information is the nodal agency that works under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. It is headquartered in New Delhi. The PIB circulates information about government plans and policies in the print, web and electronic media. It is available in 14 regional languages other than English and Hindi. The head of PIB is also the Official Spokesperson of the Government of India and holds the rank of Principal Director General (Special Secretary equivalent)
The Indian Information Service is the central civil service under Group A and Group B of Central Civil Services of the executive branch of the Government of India. IIS officers are the media managers of the Government of India. They act as a vital communication link between the Government and the people by way of disseminating information and communicating various Government policies and schemes to the public at large; and also collecting and providing valuable feedback to the Government for policy formulation. It was formed in 1960 and present Cabinet Secretary is Secretary Shri Rajiv Gauba
Ministry of Information and Broadcasting
It was established in the year 1947 and is headquartered in New Delhi. The Present Minister is Mr. Anurag Thakur. Ministry of I&B is a ministerial level agency of the Government of India responsible for the formulation and administration of rules, regulations and laws in the areas of information, broadcasting, the press and the Cinema of India
Lieutenant General MV Suchindra Kumar takes over as Vice Chief of Army Staff
Lieutenant General MV Suchindra Kumar has taken up the post of Vice Chief of the Army Staff as of 01 March 2023. He has replaced Lieutenant General BS Raju, who has taken over as the head of the Sapta Shakti Command in Jaipur.
Experienced Officer with Diverse Expertise
- Before taking on his new role, Lieutenant General MV Suchindra Kumar served as the Deputy Chief of Army Staff (Strategy) at Army HQ.
- His recent appointments demonstrate his expertise in intelligence, operations, force structuring, operational logistics, and tech infusion.
Distinguished Military Career
- The new Vice Chief of the Army Staff is an alumnus of Sainik School Bijapur and the National Defence Academy.
- He was commissioned into the 1 ASSAM REGIMENT in June 1985 and has served in various capacities, including as:
- a commander of the 59 Rashtriya Rifles Battalion (ASSAM),
- an Infantry Brigade,
- an Infantry Division on the Line of Control, and
- the highly active White Knight Corps in Northern Command.
Wide Range of Staff and Instructional Appointments
Lieutenant General MV Suchindra Kumar has held a variety of staff and instructional positions throughout his career. These include:
- an instructional tenure at Infantry School, Mhow,
- Senior Operations Officer in the United Nations Sector in Cambodia,
- Colonel (Policy) in Military Secretary Branch,
- Indian Army Training Team at Lesotho,
- Brigadier General Staff (Operations) of a Corps in the Eastern Theatre,
- Additional Director General Military Intelligence, and
- Director General Military Intelligence at Army HQ.
Extensive Training and Publications
The Officer has attended prestigious courses such as:
- the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington,
- Higher Command Course, Mhow, and
- the National Defence College, New Delhi.
He has also participated in courses on:
- ‘Cooperative Security in South Asia’ in Sri Lanka and
- ‘United Nations Senior Mission Leaders Course’ in Egypt.
His military papers have been published in several professional journals, demonstrating his knowledge and expertise in the field.
Jadeja becomes the 2nd Indian cricketer to complete 5000 runs & 500 wickets in International cricket
He has won the Player of the Match Award, for his all-round performance in the first two matches.
Today, Ravindra Jadeja, all-rounder Indian cricketer has created history during the first day’s play for the third Test between India and Australia in Indore. Jadeja has become the second Indian to complete a double of 500 wickets and 5000 runs for India in international matches after Kapil Dev.
Kapil Dev: First Player with 5000 runs and 500 wickets in International Matches
- He was one of the greatest pace bowlers and one of the greatest fast-bowling all rounder.
- He was voted as India’s Cricketer of the Century during 2022, ahead of Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar.
- It was his stamina which took him to 431 wickets and only a year beyond.
- He returned to cricket again as a bowling consultant and served as chairman of National Cricket Academy for two years and later he joined Indian Cricket League which led to his removal from the NCA.
Achievements of Kapil Dev
- He has the record of most wickets taken in his career which is 687 wickets.
- He has the record of the most balls bowled in his career which is 38943 balls.
- He also has the record of most runs conceded in his career 19812.
- He has the record of most wickets taken i.e. 364 wickets.
About Ravindra Jadeja’s accomplishment
He is playing his 63rd Test for India and accounted for the dismissal of the Australian opener Travis Head on the fourth ball of his first over, which completed his 500 wickets in international cricket and by doing so, he completed the double of 5000 runs and 500 wickets.
- He has won the Player of the Match Award, for his all-round performance in the first two matches.
- He was ranked as the No.1 bowler in ODI Cricket by the ICC in August 2013
- In the opening game of Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia, Jadeja won the player of the match for his five-wicket haul and fifty-plus run innings.
- He has taken the most wickets in his career i.e. 499 and is in the 37th position.
- He also has the record of most balls bowled in his career which is 25002.
- He has a record for the most runs conceded in his career is 14686.
- He also has a record of most wickets taken bowled which is 116 wickets.
About Ravindra Jadeja
- He is a left-handed batter, all-rounder and has played a total of 63 Tests, 171 ODIs and 64 T20Is for India.
- His total scores are 2623 runs in Tests, 2447 runs in ODIs and 457 runs in T20Is.
- His statistics for the bowling figures are 260 wickets in Tests, 189 wickets in ODIs and 51 wickets in T20Is.
List of Players achieved the milestone of 500 wickets and 5000 runs in International Cricket
- Shahid Afridi
- Jacques Kallis
- Wasim Akram
- Daniel Vettori
- Chaminda Vaas
- Shaun Pollock
- Shakib Al Hasan
- Kapil Dev
- Ravindra Jadeja
- I Khan
- I Botham
Most wickets among the Indian players with 5000 runs in International Cricket
- Kapil Dev – 687
- Ravindra Jadeja – 500
- Ravi Shastri – 280
- Sachin Tendulkar- 201
- Yuvraj Singh – 147
- Virender Sehwag- 134
- Sourav Ganguly – 132
MRF Tyres ICC Men’s Test Bowling Rankings : Ravichandran Ashwin tops
James Anderson is now five rating points behind Ashwin, who remains on 864 points.
In the second Test in New Delhi, Ashwin claimed the top spot after taking 6 wickets. Ravichandran Ashwin is the veteran Indian off-spinner, who jumped to the top of the latest ICC Men’s Test Bowling Rankings. He replaced England’s pacer James Anderson and claimed the top spot after taking 6 wickets.
About Ravichandran Ashwin
- He first claimed the top honor among Test bowlers in 2015 and has returned to the top spot several times since then.
- Ashwin bagged big wickets in India’s win in Delhi, removing Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith in the same over of the first innings.
- In the second innings, the off-spinner picked up three of the top five.
- He is the third No.1 Test bowler in as many weeks after Anderson replaced Australia captain Pat Cummins.
Achievements of Ravichandran Ashwin
- He has the record for most wickets in a career which is 686 wickets.
- He has the record for most balls bowled in a career which is 31556 balls.
- He also has the record of most wickets taken caught which is 382 wickets.
- He also has the record of the most wickets taken by a fielder which is 323 wickets.
- Ashwin is on the brink of surpassing some of the major records held by Anil Kumble and Kapil Dev.
- India will be hosting Australia in the third of the four-match Test series at the Holkar Cricket Stadium in Indore, here, Ashwin has the perfect opportunity to make new records.
- Ashwin is just 8 wickets away from equalling Anil Kumble’s 111 wickets against the Australian team in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
- With this, Ashwin is also just 2 wickets away from eclipsing Kapil Dev’s tally of 687 wickets in international cricket.
Measures Being Taken To Introduce Age-Appropriate Sexual Awareness Curriculum In Schools, State Informs Kerala High Court
The Director of General Education has informed the Kerala High Court that steps are being taken to commence classes related to sexual awareness in schools from the upcoming academic year. The committee of experts formed by the State Government is creating an age-appropriate sexual awareness curriculum to be included in the curriculum as soon as possible.
Court orders progress update on sexual awareness curriculum
- Justice Bechu Kurian Thomas had previously expressed disappointment with the State for not taking measures to include prevention-oriented programmes on sexual abuse as part of the school curriculum.
- The court ordered the committee members to explain the details of the meetings and measures taken by them.
- The Director General of Education and the Additional Director of Education presented the court with details of the committee meetings and the steps taken to implement the directions of the court.
Court directs the committee to include representative from KELSA
- The court expressed satisfaction with the explanation provided by the committee and directed the committee to include Adv. Parvathy Menon, the Project Co-ordinator of the Victim Rights Centre under KELSA, is a member of the Committee.
- The court suggested that the presence of the Kerala State Legal Services Authority (KELSA) through a representative could enrich the Committee’s deliberations and contribute significantly to creating the curriculum.
Court concerned about sexual offences committed on school children
- The court had on previous occasions expressed its concern at the alarming rise in the number of sexual offences committed against school children.
- It observed that in many instances, the perpetrators themselves were students, and the voice of the victims of sexual abuse should not be suppressed.
- The court invoked its jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution for issuing directions to the State Government and CBSE to identify the mode and methodology for imparting an age-appropriate prevention-oriented programme on sexual abuse.
- It emphasized that education is essential for empowering the victim to speak out and be aware of the consequences of sexual offences and their ramifications.
Meet Justice Bechu Kurian Thomas
- Justice Bechu Kurian Thomas completed his B.A.L, L.L.B. from the Government Law College, Ernakulam in 1992 and started his legal practice in Kottayam.
- He shifted his practice to the High Court of Kerala at Ernakulam in 1995 and established the firm Bechu Kurian & Co in 1998.
- Justice Thomas has an extensive practice in all fields of law, including Constitutional law, Administrative law, Taxation law, Corporate law, Arbitration, Environmental law, Civil Law, Criminal law, and Maritime law.
- He was designated as a Senior Advocate by the High Court of Kerala on 19th August 2015.
- He was sworn in as an Additional Judge of the High Court of Kerala on 6th March 2020.
- Justice Thomas has appeared before various Courts and Tribunals within and outside the State of Kerala, including the Supreme Court, National Company Law Appellate Tribunal, and National Green Tribunal, among others.
- He was the recipient of the 1997 British Council Chevening Scholarship and was a member of various social organisations including Round Table India and Rotary International.
The Kerala High Court: A Brief Overview
- The Kerala High Court stands at the head of the judicial administration of the State of Kerala and the Union Territory of Lakshadweep.
- It was established in 1958 and is located in Kochi.
- The court comprises a Chief Justice and a maximum of 52 judges.
- At present, the sanctioned Judge strength of the High Court of Kerala is 35 Permanent Judges including the Chief Justice and 12 Additional Judges.
- The court has a reputation for the speedy disposal of cases.
- The Kerala High Court is an important institution of justice in the state of Kerala and plays a crucial role in upholding the rule of law.