23 May 2023 – Current Affairs

Daily Current Capsules

23 May 2023

Infrastructure Development

Smart Cities Mission

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What’s the NEWS

  • Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs apprised the members of the consultative committee of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs about the progress of the Smart Cities Mission.

Smart Cities Mission

  • Smart Cities Mission launched on 25 June 2015, is aimed at providing core infrastructure, a clean and sustainable environment and a decent quality of life to their citizens through the application of ‘smart solutions’.
  • 100 cities selected through a two-stage competition to be developed as Smart Cities are showing satisfying progress.
  • Smart Cities Mission, monitored by an Apex Committee headed by the Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, regularly report the implementation status of projects through the Real-Time Geographical Management Information System (GMIS).
  • A Smart City Advisory Forum (SCAF) is established at the city level to advise and enable collaboration among various stakeholders.
  • It consists of Member(s) of Parliament, Member(s) of the Legislative Assembly, Mayor, District Collector, local youth, technical experts, other stakeholders, etc.
  • All 100 Smart Cities have established their SCAFs.
  • At the State level, High Powered Steering Committee (HPSC) chaired by the Chief Secretary has been established.

Smart Cities Mission Strategy

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Integrated Command and Control Centres (ICCCs)

  • The Minister also lauded the pioneering effort of the Mission in the successful deployment of the Integrated Command and Control Centres (ICCCs) in all 100 smart cities.
  • ICCCs build better situational awareness by the use of cutting-edge technologies and provide consolidated visualization for civic officials across urban functions to handle day-day work/ issues/ exigencies through detailed SOPs
  • ICCCs have become the nerve centres of these smart cities and embody effective use of technology towards strengthening urban management.

Government Initiatives

The Committee on Consumer Policy of the International Organization for Standardization (COPOLCO)

Consumer Affairs (@jagograhakjago) / Twitter

What’s the NEWS

  • India is hosting the 44th edition of the coveted annual ISO COPOLCO Plenary from 23-26 May 2023 in New Delhi.
  • Organized by – the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), the national standards body of India.

Know! about COPOLCO

  • COPOLCO—the Committee on Consumer Policy of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO)—provides a forum for the exchange of information and experience on consumer participation in the international standardization work of ISO and, by liaison, the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).
  • It is responsible for promoting consumer interests in the standardization process and for ensuring that standards are developed with the needs of consumers in mind.
  • COPOLCO’s membership includes some 128 ISO member countries
  • ISO COPOLCO is reckoned as the major international event that brings together representatives from ISO member countries to discuss and develop strategies for accelerating the development of standards for the world.

Know! about International Standards Organisation (ISO):

  • ISO is an independent, non-governmental international organization made up of members from the national standards bodies of 168 countries.
  • It develops standards for the world impacting a diverse range of business and social sectors.
  • Location of Central Secretariat – Geneva, Switzerland.
  • India has since long been actively involved in matters of international standardization and was one of the founding members of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

Bureau of Indian Standards ( BIS)

  • In its capacity as the National Standards Body of India, BIS is actively involved in matters of international and regional standardization.
  • BIS is a member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and through the Indian National Committee (INC) is a member of the International Electro-Technical Commission (IEC).
  • BIS is also a member of regional standards bodies like the Pacific Area Standards Congress (PASC), and the South Asian Regional Standards Organization (SARSO) and is under the framework of IBSA (India, Brazil and South Africa).


PARAKH (The National Assessment Centre)

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What’s the NEWS

  • PARAKH has been set up as the organisation under NCERT.
  • It will work on bringing the school boards across the States and the Union Territories on a common platform.
  • PARAKH will act as a common platform for the interaction of all concerned stakeholders in order to develop a holistic approach that ensures a fair assessment system which promotes equity in performance and equivalence in the assessment of students.

Need for equivalence of boards

  • In India, currently, there are around 60 school examination boards that are operating in different states/UTs
  • The aim is to establish a unified framework that enables seamless transitions for students moving between different boards or regions.
  • This includes aligning curriculum standards, grading systems, and evaluation methodologies to enhance the credibility, recognition of certificates, and grades obtained across boards
  • The workshop focused on a discussion on equivalence across educational boards. Multiple stakeholders were informed regarding the conception of PARAKH.



What’s the NEWS

  • All the 23 police stations under the Visakhapatnam Police Commissionerate are likely to get e-Malkhana.

Know! about e-Malkhana

  • e-Malkhana is a scientific way of storing property and evidence recovered from the crime scene. 
  • The facility was first commissioned in July 2021 at Narsipatnam Police Station (presently in the Anakapalli district).
  • According to police officers, earlier recovered properties and evidence used to be stored in storerooms and it was difficult to find them.
  • The property seized and evidence collected from the crime scene can be stored in standard-size cardboard boxes, which will be numbered with other details. A dynamic QR code will be generated and pasted on the box.
  • A dedicated website is also hosted and all details pertaining to the case and property will be uploaded. All one has to do is scan the code to get the details.

Prelims Factoids

Operation Dhvast

What’s the NEWS

  • Under Operation Dhvast, National Investigation Agency (NIA) recently arrested three in multi-state raids.

Know! about the operation

  • Operation Dhvast had seen simultaneous, day-long raids by NIA, Punjab police and Haryana Police at 324 locations across Punjab, Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan etc.
  • The NIA has arrested three persons in connection with the multi-state raids conducted on in three cases relating to the nexus among terrorists, gangsters and drug dealers.
  • The nexus has been linked to targeted killings, extortion and terror funding of pro-Khalistan outfits with earnings from the smuggling of drugs and weapons.
  • NIA investigations have so far revealed that conspiracies were being hatched in jails of different states and executed by an organized network of operatives based abroad.

Art and Culture


What’s the NEWS

  • Indian Prime Minister along with his Papua New Guinea counterpart recently released the Tamil classic ‘Thirukkural’ in the Tok Pisin language.

Know! about Thirukkural

  • Tirukkural (Tamil: “Sacred Couplets”) also called Kural is a classic Tamil text written by Thiruvalluvar, believed to have lived sometime between the 2nd century BCE and the 5th century CE.
  • It has had an immense influence on Tamil culture and life.
  • It is a collection of 1,330 couplets (kurals) that offer timeless wisdom on various aspects of life, including ethics, governance, love, and spirituality.
  • Thirukkural is divided into three main sections or booksAram (Virtue), Porul (Wealth), and Inbam (Love).
  • Each section covers a wide range of topics and imparts moral, ethical, and practical guidance to the readers.
  • The couplets are composed in a concise and poetic form, making them easily memorable and quotable.

Space Awareness


ISRO To Launch NVS-01 Navigation Satellite On May 29

What’s the NEWS

  • The GSLV-F12/NVS-01 mission is designed to deploy the NVS-01 navigation satellite into a geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO).

Know! about NVS-01

  • It is the first in the series of second-generation navigation satellites built by ISRO’s UR Rao Satellite Centre in Bengaluru.
  • At present, India uses its Navigation with Indian Constellation (NavIC) series of satellites for civilian and defence navigation in the Indian mainland and even 1500 kms beyond India’s borders.
  • NVS series of satellites will sustain and augment the NavIC with enhanced features.
  • This series incorporates L1 band signals additionally to widen the services.
  • For the first time, an indigenous atomic clock will be flown in NVS-01.

Navigation with Indian Constellation (NavIC)

  • It is a regional navigation satellite system established by the ISRO to meet the positioning, navigation and timing requirements of the nation.
  • NavIC was erstwhile known as Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS).
  • It is a constellation of seven satellites that work with a 24X7 network of ground stations while orbiting above Earth.
  • Three satellites are placed in geostationary orbit and four in inclined geosynchronous orbit. 
  • The NavIC coverage area includes India and a region up to 1,500km beyond the nation’s boundary.

Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO)

  • To attain geosynchronous (and also geostationary) Earth orbits, a spacecraft is first launched into an elliptical GTO.
  • There on, the satellite will independently use its onboard propulsion systems to perform orbit-raising manoeuvres and reach its intended orbit.

Defence Indigenisation

GRSE’s ‘GAINS’ Startup Challenge

GRSE's 'GAINS' Startup Challenge, a win-win partnership: Rajeev  Chandrasekhar

What’s the NEWS

  • Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) Ltd, one of India’s premier defence shipyards and a Category 1 Mini Ratna Company has embarked on a mission to identify and encourage the development of innovative solutions towards technological advances in shipbuilding by Startups.
  • As part of this drive, the Company launched GRSE Accelerated Innovation Nurturing Scheme – 2023 or “GAINS 2023” in Kolkata to leverage the eco-system that addresses present and emerging challenges in the ship design and construction industry.
  • GAINS 2023’ is designed to provide new and emergent innovators, engineers and designers, the opportunity to understand the shipyard’s core business interests and its established or bespoke practices and thereby motivate them to think and innovate in this niche technology area.

Know! about GAINS 2023

  • The ‘GAINS 2023’ Challenge is a two-stage process to help generate a large number of ideas from which a few promising ones may be selected and nurtured.
  • In the first stage, participating entities/firms/individuals would only be required to submit short illustrated and written submissions with sufficient detail to clarify a required degree of understanding of the chosen problem/solution.
  • Artificial Intelligence, Renewable/Green Energy and Energy Efficiency as well as Efficiency Enhancement are focus areas for GRSE and are the thematic areas of the ‘GAINS 2023’ Challenge.

Know! about GRSE

  • Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Ltd, abbreviated as GRSE, is one of India’s leading shipyards, located in Kolkata.
  • It builds and repairs commercial and naval vessels.
  • The GRSE has been a pioneering shipyard since becoming a DPSU way back in 1960 by delivering the first indigenous warship INS Ajay to the Indian Navy in 1961.
  • The company was nationalised by the Government of India in 1960.
  • It was awarded the Miniratna status, with accompanying financial and operational autonomy in September 2006.

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