07-08 June 2023 – Current Affairs
Daily Current Capsules
07-08 June 2023
Meri LiFE app
- The Prime Minister has lauded more than 2 crore participations on the Meri LiFE app in less than a month of its launch.
About the app
- The app, inspired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Mission LiFE, aims to promote mindful utilization instead of wasteful consumption
- MeriLiFE empowers individuals to lead a sustainable lifestyle by making pro-planet choices in their daily lives.
- Launched by -Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change
- The Ministry has developed two dedicated portals for LiFE: the Mission LiFE Portal and the Meri LiFE Portal.
- The app encourages users to participate in a series of LiFE-related tasks under five themes: Save Energy, Save Water, Reduce Single-Use Plastic, Adopt Sustainable Food Systems, and Adopt Healthy Lifestyles.
About Mission LiFE
- Launched by the Prime Minister of India during the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow on 1st November 2021.
- to utilize the power of collective action and nudge individuals across the world to
- to create and nurture a global network of individuals, namely ‘Pro-Planet People’ (P3), who will have a shared commitment to adopt and promote environmentally friendly lifestyles.
President Droupadi Murmu emplanes for 6-day visits to Suriname, Serbia
Suriname visit Highlights
- President participated in the Cultural festival on the occasion of the commemoration of 150 years of the arrival of Indians in Suriname
- In the year 1873, the first group of Indians reached the shores of Suriname
- The government of India’s decided to extend the eligibility criteria for OCI Card up from the fourth generation to the sixth generation of those original Indian immigrants who had arrived in Suriname from Indian territories.
- President paid homage at the Baba and Mai monument, a symbolic representation of the first Indian man and woman, who first set foot in Suriname.
- She paid her respects at the Mama Sranan monument which represents Mama Sranan, the Mother Suriname holding her five children, the five ethnicities that inhabit Suriname with care and affection.
Grand Order of the Chain of the Yellow Star
- President Murmu was conferred with the highest civilian honor of Suriname ‘Grand Order of the Chain of the Yellow Star’ by the President of Suriname.
- Official name – Republic of Suriname
- It is a country in northern South America.
- It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the north, French Guiana to the east, Guyana to the west, and Brazil to the south.
- It is the smallest sovereign state in South America.
- Suriname is considered a culturally Caribbean country, and is a member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
India International Institute of Democracy & Election Management (IIIDEM)
- Chief Election Commissioner inaugurated the hostel block at India International Institute of Democracy & Election Management (IIIDEM)
- IIIDEM is the training and capacity-building arm of the Election Commission of India established in 2011 to train, prepare and equip election officials and other stakeholders for the delivery of free, fair, credible, and error-free elections.
- IIIDEM to design training content and training methods for the election officials using the latest AI tools to make it engaging and in the self-learning mode.
- An apex electoral management institute of IIIDEM stature serves the critical need for ensuring free and fair elections.
- IIIDEM provides a platform for the exchange of ideas and experiences and the adoption of best practices in the field of election management from other EMBs.
- Besides training election officials in India, IIIDEM also organizes training programs for Election Management Bodies (EMBs) the world over.
- India as the lead for Cohort on Election Integrity, IIIDEM in association with ITEC Division, MEA has conducted four thematic training programs for officials from EMBs worldwide.
- IIIDEM in association with Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) has also commenced the first batch of the Master’s Program in ‘International Electoral Management and Practices’ (MIEMP), in online mode.
- It is a two-year blended Master’s Program, involving Classroom Teaching and Integrated Learning from Field Practices at TISS and IIIDEM.
- The program aims to enhance the capacity of election officials currently engaged in the organization and management of elections in various parts of the globe in various countries, and to raise the professional standards of election management bodies.
- The inaugural batch consists of 25 working professionals nominated and sponsored by the Election Commission of India including 5 International participants from the Election Management Bodies (EMBs) of Maldives, Bangladesh, Philippines, and Bhutan.
Cohort on Elections Integrity:
- It was established as a follow-up to the ‘Summit for Democracy’ held virtually in 2021.
- India through ECI, is leading the Cohort on Elections Integrity
- The first international conference of the Cohort was organized in 2022 on the topic ‘Role, Framework, and Capacity of Election Management Bodies’ where nearly 50 representatives from the Election Management Bodies (EMBs) of 11 countries participated.
- The Election Commission of India (ECI) hosted the 2nd International Conference on the theme ‘Use of Technology and Elections Integrity’
- Participant – International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) and International IDEA, apart from EMBs and Government counterparts dealing with the conduct of elections worldwide.
About Summit for Democracy
- It was an initiative of the USA and was hosted in 2021.
- The Prime Minister of India spoke at the Leaders Plenary Session in 2021.
- A “Year of Action” was proposed with events and dialogues on themes related to Democracy.
- The Summit also developed two platforms – ‘Focal Groups’ and ‘Democracy Cohorts’ to facilitate participation in the Year of Action.
- The 2nd Summit for Democracy was held in 2023 and co-hosted by the governments of Costa Rica, Rep. of Korea, the Netherlands, Zambia, and the US.
- As part of the ‘Summit for Democracy’ Year of Action, India through the ECI, is leading the ‘Democracy Cohort on Election Integrity’ to share its knowledge, technical expertise, and experiences with other democracies of the world.
- ECI, as its lead, has proposed to also provide training and capacity-building programs to Election Management Bodies (EMBs) across the world and provide technical consultancy as per the needs of other EMBs.
RBI Launches Financial Inclusion Dashboard Antardrishti
- RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das launched a financial inclusion dashboard named ‘Antardrishti’.
- The dashboard would provide the necessary knowledge to evaluate and track the development of financial inclusion by recording relevant data,
- It will also make it possible to assess the degree of financial exclusion at a local level across the nation so that such places may be addressed.
- Financial Inclusion is described as the method of offering banking and financial solutions and services to every individual in society without any form of discrimination.
- It primarily aims to include everybody in society by giving them basic financial services without looking at a person’s income or savings.
- The Reserve Bank has been promoting financial inclusion through various policy initiatives.
- To measure the extent of financial inclusion the central bank had constructed the Financial Inclusion (FI) Index in 2021.
- It is based on three dimensions of financial inclusion — ‘Access’, ‘Usage’, and ‘Quality’.
- The FI-Index has been conceptualized as a comprehensive index incorporating details of banking, investments, insurance, postal as well as the pension sector in consultation with the government and respective sectoral regulators.
- The index captures information on various aspects of financial inclusion in a single value ranging between 0 and 100, where 0 represents complete financial exclusion and 100 indicates full financial inclusion.
What’s the NEWS
- A huge dam in the Russian-controlled area of southern Ukraine has been destroyed, unleashing a flood.
- Ukraine’s military and NATO have accused Russia of blowing up the dam, while Russia has blamed Ukraine.
- Thousands of people have been evacuated from low-lying areas on either side of the river Dnipro.
About Kakhovka Dam
- The Kakhovka Hydroelectric Power Plant is in the city of Nova Kakhovka in the Kherson region.
- The city is currently under Russian occupation.
- The dam was built in the Soviet era and is one of six that sit along the Dnipro River, which stretches from the very north of the country into the Black Sea.
- In the Kherson region, Russia occupies the left, or southern, bank while Ukraine controls the right, or northern, bank.
- The dam holds back a huge reservoir, which locals call the Kakhovka Sea as you cannot see the other bank in certain places.
- The Kakhovka Dam was a dam on the Dnieper River in Kherson Oblast, Ukraine, completed in 1956 and destroyed in 2023, which provided water for the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Station.
- The primary purposes of the dam were hydroelectric power generation, irrigation, and navigation.
- The reservoir also supplies water to the Crimean Peninsula and the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant
- Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant is Europe’s largest and gets its cooling water from the reservoir which is located on the southern side, now under Russian control.
- It holds water a volume about equal to the Great Salt Lake in the U.S.
About the River Dnieper
- It is the fourth longest river in Europe.
- It runs a total length of 1,368 miles extending from the uplands of Russia’s Valdai Hills.
- It flows in a southerly direction through western Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine before emptying into the Black Sea.
Food Safety Index
What’s the NEWS
- The Union Health Minister released the fifth State Food Safety Index in New Delhi.
About Food Safety Index
- The Index is an annual assessment released by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
- It was started in 2018-19 and serves as a tool to propel States and Union Territories to enhance their performance and establish robust food safety ecosystems within their jurisdictions
- This index is based on the performance of the State/ UT on five significant parameters, namely, Human Resources and Institutional Data, Compliance, Food Testing – Infrastructure and Surveillance, Training & Capacity Building, and Consumer Empowerment.
- The Index is a dynamic quantitative and qualitative benchmarking model that provides an objective framework for evaluating food safety across all States/UTs.
- Ranking of the States and Union Territories in the 2022 -23 Report
- Among the large state category: Kerala is the top-ranking state followed by Punjab and Tamil Nadu.
- Among the small states category: Goa is the top-ranking state followed by Manipur, and Sikkim in the Small States category.
- Among the Union Territories category: Jammu and Kashmir, Chandigarh, and Delhi
FSIB selects new chiefs for GIC Re, NIC
- The Financial Services Institution Bureau (FSIB), the agency that looks for chiefs of PSU banks and insurers, has selected N Ramaswamy, General Manager, General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC Re), as the next Chairman and MD (CMD) of the company
- After due approval of the Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC), Ramaswamy will get a two-year term.
About Financial Services Institution Bureau (FSIB)
- It’s a government body set up under the Department of Financial Services (DFI) by replacing the Bank Board’s Bureau (BBB).
- It is headed by a chairman who is nominated by the central government.
- The board would comprise the Secretaries of the DFS, the chairman of IRDAI, and a deputy governor of the RBI.
- Additionally, it will have three part-time members who are experts in banking and three more from the insurance sector.
Role of FSIB
- To identify manpower capabilities and ensure proper selection of talent for senior positions at financial institutions owned by the government.
- It is entrusted with making recommendations for the appointment of full-time directors and non-executive chairmen of state-run financial services institutions.
- The final decision on the FSIB recommendation would be taken by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet headed by the Prime Minister.
- It would also issue guidelines for selecting general managers and directors of public sector general insurance companies.
- It will also be involved in formulating and developing business strategies for state-run banks and helping them in their fund-raising plans.
- It would also monitor and assess the performance of public sector banks, government-owned financial institutions, and insurance companies.
Mission on Advanced and High-Impact Research (MAHIR)
- The Ministry of Power and the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy have jointly launched a National Mission to quickly identify emerging technologies in the power sector and develop them indigenously, at scale, for deployment within and outside India.
Mission on Advanced and High-Impact Research (MAHIR)
- It aims to facilitate indigenous research, development, and demonstration of the latest and emerging technologies in the power sector.
- The Mission will be funded by pooling financial resources of the Ministry of Power, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, and the Central Public Sector Enterprises under the two Ministries.
- Any additional funding needed will be mobilized from the Government of India’s budgetary resources.
- Planned for an initial period of five years from 2023-24 to 2027-28, the Mission will follow the technology life cycle approach of Idea to Product.
- MAHIR will work towards Industry-Academia -Government collaboration to create an ecosystem for innovation and translation of research in the power sector.
- “MAHIR will work with premier institutions such as IITs, IIMs, NITs, IISERs, and Universities on the one hand and public & private power sector start-ups and established industries with the government acting as an enabler for creating an innovation ecosystem
The key objectives of the Mission are as follows:
- To identify emerging technologies and areas of future relevance for the Global Power Sector and take up indigenous end-to-end development of relevant technologies
- To provide a common platform for Power Sector Stakeholders for collective brainstorming, and synergetic technology development and devise pathways for the smooth transfer of technology
- To support pilot projects of indigenous technologies (developed especially by Indian Start-ups) and facilitate their commercialization
- To leverage foreign alliances and partnerships to accelerate research & development of advanced technologies and to build competencies, capabilities, and access to advanced technologies through bilateral or multilateral collaborations, thereby facilitating the exchange of know-how and Technology Transfer.
- To seed, nurture and scale up scientific and industrial R&D and to create a vibrant & innovative ecosystem in the Power Sector of the country
- To make our Nation among the leading countries in Power System related Technologies & Applications development
Areas Identified for Research
- Alternatives to Lithium-Ion storage batteries
- Modifying electric cookers/pans to suit Indian cooking methods
- Green hydrogen for mobility (High-Efficiency Fuel Cell)
- Carbon capture
- Geothermal energy
- Solid-state refrigeration.
- Nanotechnology for EV battery
- Indigenous CRGO technology
Structure of the Mission
- The Mission will have a two-tier structure – a Technical Scoping Committee and an Apex Committee.
- The Technical Scoping Committee, chaired by the Chairperson of Central Electricity Authority, will identify ongoing and emerging research areas globally, recommend potential technologies for development under the Mission,
- The Apex Committee, chaired by the Union Minister for Power & New and Renewable Energy will deliberate on the technology and products to be developed and approve the research proposals. The Apex committee will look also into international collaborations.
Scope of the Mission
- Under the Mission, once research areas are identified and approved by the Apex Committee, the proposals for outcome-linked funding will be invited from companies/organizations across the globe.
Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS) to open Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendras across the country
- The government of India has decided to allow 2000 Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS) to open Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendras across the country.
Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendra
- Medicines at Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendras are available at 50% to 90% lesser rate in comparison to the branded medicines.
- The Eligibility Criteria for the Individual applicants to open Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendra is to have D. Pharma/B. Pharma.
- Any organization, NGO, charitable organization and hospital can apply for this by appointing B.Pharma / D.Pharma degree holders.
- For opening Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Kendra at least 120 square feet space either privately owned or rental should be available.
Primary Agricultural Credit Society
- A Primary Agricultural Credit Society (PACS) is a basic unit and the smallest cooperative credit institution in India.
- It works on the grassroots level (gram panchayat and village level).
INDIAN NAVY TO COMMEMORATE 130th ANNIVERSARY OF GANDHIJI’S SATYAGRAHA AT THE PLACE WHERE IT BEGAN
- The Indian Navy will participate in a commemorative event to mark 130 years of the start of the struggle against apartheid at the Pietermaritzburg, Railway Station near Durban.
- INS Trishul, a frontline warship of the Indian Navy is visiting Durban from 06 to 09 Jun 23 to commemorate the 130th anniversary of the 7th Jun 1893 incident at Pietermaritzburg, Railway Station as also 30 years of re-establishment of diplomatic relations between India and South Africa.
GANDHIJI’S SATYAGRAHA (birth of Satyagraha)
- Mahatma Gandhi had arrived in Durban, South Africa, in 1893 to serve as legal counsel to the merchant Dada Abdulla.
- On 07 June 1893, during a trip to Pretoria in the Transvaal, he first arrived at Pietermaritzburg station. Gandhiji who was seated in the first-class compartment after having purchased a ticket, was evicted from the compartment at the behest of a European since as per him ‘coolies’ and non-whites were not permitted in first-class compartments.
- The incident is considered to be the trigger which led to Gandhiji’s fight against racial oppression and to the birth of Satyagraha.
- The story of Mahatma Gandhi’s travails at Pietermaritzburg Railway Station acquired another life on April 25, 1997, when, in a moving ceremony at Pietermaritzburg Railway Station, presided by Nelson Mandela, then President of South Africa, the Freedom of Pietermaritzburg was conferred posthumously on Mahatma Gandhi.
- Gathered together to right a century-old wrong, President Mandela recalled “Gandhi’s magnificent example of personal sacrifice and dedication in the face of oppression”.
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