Current Affairs 19 & 20 Sep 2023
Daily Current Capsules
19 and 20 September 2023
Two Indian sites join UNESCO World Heritage List
- The World Heritage Committee has named 37 new sites to UNESCO’s World Heritage List — including one in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
- The newly inscribed properties were announced during the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee being held from Sept. 10 to 25 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
- India has 42 world heritage properties overall, which includes 34 in the cultural category, seven in the natural category and one mixed property
- Presently, India has the sixth largest number of (UNESCO) sites in the world.
- The countries that have 42 or more world heritage sites are Italy, Spain, Germany, China and France
Santiniketan, West Bengal
- It has been officially inscribed on @UNESCO’s World Heritage List, becoming 41st World Heritage Property of India.
- Santiniketan, the town in West Bengal’s Birbhum district where Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore spent much of his life, has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
- Established in 1901 by poet and philosopher Tagore, Santiniketan was a residential school and centre for art based on ancient Indian traditions and a vision of the unity of humanity transcending religious and cultural boundaries.
- A ‘world university’ was established at Santiniketan in 1921, recognising the unity of humanity or “Visva Bharati”.
- India had been striving for long to get a UNESCO tag for this cultural site located in the Birbhum district.
Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysalas
- The Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysalas has been nominated as a serial property comprising three temples in Karnataka, namely the Channakeshava temple in Belur, the Hoysaleshvara temple in Halebidu and the Keshava temple in Somanathapura, reflecting the creative brilliance of the 13th-century architects
- “These temples are a culmination of various temple building traditions prevalent in the northern, central and southern India such as the Nagara, Bhumija and Dravida styles
- Hence the inscription of these temples in the World Heritage List is a combined homage to the great temple-building tradition of India.
World Heritage Convention
- The World Heritage Convention, adopted by UNESCO in 1972, strives to safeguard exceptional places for future generations, recognizing their universal value and the need for international cooperation in their protection.
- UNESCO encourages the identification, protection, and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity.
Kisan Rin Portal (KRP), KCC Ghar Ghar Abhiyaan, Weather Information Network Data Systems (WINDS).
- The Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare launched three initiatives, namely the Kisan Rin Portal (KRP), KCC Ghar Ghar Abhiyaan, an ambitious campaign aiming to extend the benefits of the Kisan Credit Card (KCC) Scheme to every farmer across the nation, and a manual on Weather Information Network Data Systems (WINDS).
- These initiatives aim to revolutionize agriculture, enhance financial inclusion, optimize data utilization, and improve the lives of farmers across the nation.
Kisan Rin Portal (KRP)
- Developed collaboratively by MoA&FW, the Department of Financial Services (DFS), Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying (DAH&D), Department of Fisheries (DoF), RBI, and NABARD, KRP is poised to revolutionize access to credit services under the Kisan Credit Card (KCC).
- It will also assist farmers in availing subsidized agriculture credit through the Modified Interest Subvention Scheme (MISS).
- The KRP portal serves as an integrated hub, offering a comprehensive view of farmer data, loan disbursement specifics, interest subvention claims, and scheme utilization progress.
- By fostering seamless integration with banks, this pioneering portal enables proactive policy interventions, strategic guidance, and adaptive enhancements for more focused and efficient agriculture credit and optimum utilization of interest subvention.
Ghar-Ghar KCC Abhiyaan: Door to Door KCC Campaign
- MoA&FW’s commitment to universal financial inclusion is underscored by this campaign, ensuring that every farmer has unhindered access to credit facilities that drive their agricultural pursuits.
- MoA&FW has diligently verified existing KCC account holders’ data against the PM KISAN database, identifying account holders who match with the PM KISAN database and those who, although PM KISAN beneficiaries, do not have KCC accounts.
Launch of WINDS Manual
- The Weather Information Network Data Systems (WINDS) initiative stands as a pioneering effort to establish a network of Automatic Weather Stations & Rain Gauges at the taluk/block and gram panchayat levels.
- This initiative creates a robust database of hyper-local weather data, supporting various agricultural services.
Promotion of Tribal Products for North East Region (PTP-NER 2.0) scheme
- Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Ltd. (TRIFED) under Union Ministry of Tribal Affairs, would be launching the phase 2 of the ‘Promotion of Tribal Products for North East Region’ (PTP-NER 2.0) scheme
- In this phase, 29 districts with as many teams of TRIFED, North Eastern Handicrafts and Handlooms Development Corporation (NEHHDC) – Union Ministry of DoNER, and State Administration teams will travel the North East Region, to once again reach out to tribal artisans and showcase their cultural richness and heritage not only to the Nation but world over.
Know! about PTP-NER 2.0) scheme
- Union Minister for Tribal Affairs launched the Central Sector Scheme ‘Marketing and Logistics Development for Promotion of Tribal Products from North-Eastern Region (PTP-NER)’, for the benefit of Scheduled Tribes of North-eastern Region, in Manipur on 18th April, 2023.
- The scheme was initiated on the same day by TRIFED, with the aim of strengthening and giving impetus to livelihood opportunities for tribal artisans by increasing their production capacity through technology and giving their products access to markets by effective marketing and attractive packaging.
Asia Pacific Forum on Human Rights
- The President of India inaugurated Annual General Meeting and Biennial Conference of the Asia Pacific Forum on Human Rights in New Delhi
Know! about APF
- The APF was established in 1996 with five members.
- Today, itsmembership includes 26 National Human Rights Institutions from all corners of the Asia Pacific.
- The APF has 17 full members and eight associate members.
- To be admitted as a full member, a National Human Rights Institution must fully comply with the minimum international standards set out in the Paris Principles.
- National Human Rights Institutions that partially comply with the Paris Principles are granted associate membership.
- APF can use the accreditation decisions of the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI) to determine APF membership status.
- It also provide practical support to our members before, during and after the GANHRI accreditation process
- Full membership of the APF is equivalent to the GANHRI accreditation of “A status” and associate membership of the APF is equivalent to the GANHRI accreditation of “B status”.
Know! about Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI)
- The Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions brings together and supports national human rights institutions to promote and protect human rights
- GANHRI, through the Sub-Committee on Accreditation (SCA), is responsible for reviewing and accrediting NHRIs in compliance with the Paris Principles.
- It is a rigorous, peer-based process, undertaken by representatives of NHRIs from each of the four regions: Africa, Americas, Asia Pacific and Europe.
Know! about Paris Principles
- The Paris Principles set out internationally agreed minimum standards that NHRIs must meet to be considered credible. Developed by NHRIs in 1991 and adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1993, the Paris Principles require NHRIs to be independent in law, membership, operations, policy and control of resources.
- PM Vishwakarma, a Central Sector Scheme, was launched on 17th September, 2023 by the Prime Minister to provide end-to-end support to artisans and craftspeople who work with their hands and tools.
The Scheme envisages provisioning of the following benefits to the artisans and crafts persons:
(i) Recognition: Recognition of artisans and craftspeople through PM Vishwakarma certificate and ID card.
(ii) Skill Upgradation: Basic Training of 5-7 days and Advanced Training of 15 days or more, with a stipend of Rs. 500 per day;
(iii) Toolkit Incentive: A toolkit incentive of upto Rs. 15,000 in the form of e-vouchers at the beginning of Basic Skill Training.
(iv) Credit Support: Collateral free ‘Enterprise Development Loans’ of upto Rs. 3 lakh in two tranches of Rs. 1 lakh and Rs. 2 lakh with tenures of 18 months and 30 months, respectively, at a concessional rate of interest fixed at 5%, with Government of India subvention to the extent of 8%.
(v) Incentive for Digital Transaction: An amount of Re. 1 per digital transaction, upto maximum 100 transactions monthly will be credited to the beneficiary’s account for each digital pay-out or receipt.
(vi) Marketing Support: Marketing support will be provided to the artisans and craftspeople in the form of quality certification, branding, onboarding on e-commerce platforms such as GeM, advertising, publicity and other marketing activities to improve linkage to value chain.
- In addition to the above-mentioned benefits, the Scheme will onboard the beneficiaries on Udyam Assist Platform as ‘entrepreneurs’ in the formal MSME ecosystem.
- Enrolment of beneficiaries shall be done through Common Service Centres with Aadhaar-based biometric authentication on PM Vishwakarma portal.
- The enrolment of beneficiaries will be followed by a three-step verification which will include (i) Verification at Gram Panchayat/ ULB level, (ii) Vetting and Recommendation by the District Implementation Committee (iii) Approval by the Screening Committee.
World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) Recognition Status
- The National Medical Commission (NMC), India has achieved the remarkable feat of being granted the coveted World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) Recognition Status for a remarkable tenure of 10 years.
- This recognition is a testament to NMC’s unwavering commitment to the highest standards in medical education and accreditation.
- As part of this recognition, all the 706 existing medical colleges in India will become WFME accredited and the new medical colleges that will be set up in the coming 10 years will automatically become WFME accredited.
- The recognition will further enhance the quality and standards of medical education in India by aligning them with the global best practices and benchmarks.
- It will also enable Indian medical graduates to pursue postgraduate training and practice in other countries that require WFME recognition, such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
- It will increase the international recognition and reputation of Indian medical schools and professionals
- With NMC being WFME accredited all the Indian students become eligible to apply for Education Commission on Foreign Medical Education and United States Medical Licensing Examination.
Know! about World Federation for Medical Education (WFME)
- The World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) is a global organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of medical education worldwide.
- WFME’s accreditation program plays a pivotal role in ensuring that medical institutes meet and uphold the highest international standards of education and training.
Know! about National Medical Commission (NMC)
- The National Medical Commission (NMC) is India’s premier regulatory body overseeing medical education and practice. Committed to upholding the highest standards in healthcare education, N M C ensures the delivery of quality medical education and training across the nation.
Indian Army and United States Army to host Indo-Pacific Armies Chiefs Conference (IPACC), Indo- Pacific Armies Management Seminar (IPAMS) and Senior Enlisted Leaders Forum (Self)
- The Indian Army and the United States Army will co-host 13th IPACC, 47th IPAMS and 9th SELF, a three-day conference of Chiefs of Armies and delegates of 35 countries in New Delhi from 25th to 27th September 2023.
- The central theme for this forum is “Together for Peace: Sustaining Peace and Stability in the Indo-Pacific Region.”
- The conference will provide an opportunity for Army Chiefs and senior-level leaders from land forces, primarily of the Indo-Pacific region, to exchange ideas and views on security and contemporary issues.
- The core effort of the forum will be to promote peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region through mutual understanding, dialogue and friendship amongst the littoral partners.
- The IPAMS is a military seminar for Army Officers between the ranks of Lieutenant Colonel to Major General to exchange views on regional security issues and best practices.
- The SELF will involve the participation of tactical-level sub-unit commanders to hold open dialogue, share lessons learned, and provide understanding about Armies participating in the forum.
Air Force Association (AFA)
- Air Force Association (AFA) celebrated its 43rd Annual Day
- Air Force Association is a welfare organisation in the non-governmental sector, actively involved in the welfare of air veterans and their families.
- The Association is also deeply committed in alleviating the sufferings of widows and destitute children.
- The Association was established on 15 Sep 1980 under the patronage of Marshal of the Air Force Arjan Singh DFC.
- It has twenty branches spread all over the country.
- In addition, it has two branches in UK and Australia.
- It has nearly 92141 Air Veteran members and 6190 Spouse members.
- Indian Naval Ships Ranvijay and Kavaratti and submarine INS Sindhukesari arrived in Singapore to participate in the 30th edition of the Singapore India Maritime Bilateral Exercise (SIMBEX), an annual bilateral Naval exercise between the Indian Navy and Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN), which is being conducted since 1994.
- SIMBEX holds the distinction of being the longest continuous naval exercise that Indian Navy has with any other country.
- SIMBEX-2023 is being conducted in two phases – Harbour Phase at Singapore from 21 to 24 September 2023, followed by a Sea Phase.
Primary Reference Time Clock (PRTC)
- Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DOT), the premier Telecom R&D Centre of the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) and CSIR-National Physical laboratory (NPL) signed an agreement for ‘Development of NavIC based IST traceable Primary Reference Time Clock (PRTC) for Telecom Sector’.
- The agreement is signed under the Telecom Technology Development Fund (TTDF) scheme of the DoT for providing funding support to domestic companies and institutions involved in technology design, development, commercialization of telecommunication products and solutions to enable affordable broadband and mobile services in rural and remote areas.
Benefits of PRTC
- The project focuses on the development of a device which shall provide direct Indian Standard Time (IST) traceability to all the Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) within ± 20 ns.
- This shall benefit India in multiple ways starting from reducing the dependency on GPS, shifting to IRNSS/NavIC, digital forensic analysis of transactions, cyber secure networks, reduce call drops & further synchronise all the telecom services with one reference time source IST, developed by CSIR-NPL.
- Time synchronization of the telecom networks will be foundation for a strong cyber secured nation, as every bank transaction, stock market transactions and exchange of information is through the TSPs and ISPs.
- Development of NavIC based IST traceable Primary Reference Time Clock (PRTC) is an initiative which aims towards achieving the objective of “One nation One time”.
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