Current Affairs 21,22,23,24 & 25 Nov 2023

Daily Current Capsules

AGNI Initiative

  • Central Council for Research in Ayurveda Sciences (CCRAS), Ministry of Ayush, in its new endeavour to promote research for mainstreaming the pragmatic Ayurveda practices through scientific validation and evidence-based appraisal, has launched “Ayurveda Gyan Naipunya Initiative” (AGNI) for physicians practicing in the field of Ayurveda.
  • The interested qualified Ayurveda Practitioners may send the Expression of Interest in the format available on CCRAS Website

Know! about AGNI

  • AGNI aims to provide a platform to Ayurveda practitioners for reporting their innovative practices & and experiences in various disease conditions.
  • To promote the culture of reporting evidence-based practice among Ayurveda Practitioners.
  • To document the reported successful therapeutic regimens for various disease conditions involving Single drug/ Formulation/ Procedures for the purpose of education and academics.
  • To identify the interested Ayurveda practitioners for collaboration in the creation of a database through applications and capacity building through training in research methods and good clinical practices.
  • To undertake research for mainstreaming pragmatic practices through scientific validation and evidence-based appraisal

Know! the role of CCRAS                                                        

  • CCRAS will document and publish the reported medical practices and therapeutic regimens for education and academic purposes in consultation with NCISM.
  • There are over 500,000 registered Ayurveda practitioners who are mainly practicing in India.
  • CCRAS, under Ministry of Ayush, is an apex research organization committed to undertaking, coordinating, formulating, development and promotion of research on scientific lines in Ayurveda.
  • In the recent past, to boost scientific research through Ayurveda colleges and hospitals, CCRAS has initiated the Studentship Program for Ayurveda Research Ken (SPARK) for Undergraduate Scholars, Scheme for Training in Ayurveda Research for PG Scholars (PG-STAR) for PG Scholars and Scope for Mainstreaming Ayurveda Research in Teaching Professionals (SMART) program for teachers.

Know! about CCRAS

  • The Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS) is an autonomous body of the Ministry of AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy), Government of India.
  • It is an apex body in India for the formulation, coordination, development and promotion of research on scientific lines in Ayurveda and Sowa-Rigpa system of medicine.

EXERCISE AUSTRAHIND-23

  • The Indian Armed Forces contingent comprising of 81 personnel departed for Australia to take part in the second edition of Joint Military Exercise AUSTRAHIND-23.
  • The exercise will be conducted at Perth, Australia from 22nd November to 06th December 2023.
  • Indian Army contingent comprises 60 personnel from a Battalion of the GORKHA Rifles. The Australian Army contingent comprising 60 personnel will be from the 13th Brigade.
  • One officer from Indian Navy and 20 personnel from Indian Air Force will also participate from the Indian side.
  • The Australian contingent will include 20 personnel each from the Royal Australian Navy and Royal Australian Air Force.
  • Exercise AUSTRAHIND was instituted in 2022 and the first edition was conducted in Mahajan, Rajasthan. It is planned to be an annual training event to be conducted alternatively in India and Australia.
  • The aim of the exercise is to foster collaborative partnership and share best practices between the two sides.

8th India Water Impact Summit (IWIS)

  • The Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways of India, inaugurated the 8th Edition of the India Water Impact Summit (IWIS) on November 22, 2023
  • The summit, organized by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and the Center for Ganga River Basin Management and Studies (cGanga), spans three days from November 22 to 24, 2023.
  • The theme of IWIS 2023 is ‘Development vis-à-vis Land, Water and Rivers,’ aimed at uniting scientific experts, stakeholders, and government representatives to address dynamic challenges and opportunities in India’s water sector.

Celebrating 1st Year Anniversary of Karmayogi Prarambh on the iGOT Karmayogi Platform

  • Launched by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on 22nd November, 2022, Karmayogi Bharat (DoPT) celebrated the first anniversary of Karmayogi Prarambh , the online orientation programme on the iGOT Karmayogi Platform for all new government appointees recruited through Rozgar Melas.
  • The Karmayogi Prarambh programme includes a set of eight courses curated to help all Rozgar Mela appointees get acclimatized to government policies and transition smoothly into their new roles.

iGOT Karmayogi

  • iGOT Karmayogi (https://igotkarmayogi.gov.in/) is a comprehensive online learning portal to guide government officials in their capacity-building journey.
  • The portal combines 6 functional hubs for online learning, competency management, career management, discussions, events, and networking.
  • More than 26 lakh learners from across the government spectrum are currently registered on the iGOT Platform having access to 815+ courses.
  • The Prarambh courses included as a part of the programme are: 1) Code of Conduct for Government Employees, 2) Prevention of Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace, 3) Understanding Motivation, 4) Self-Leadership, 5) Stress Management, 6) Effective Communication, 7) MS Word for Beginners, and 8) MS Excel for Beginners.

Adi-Vyakhyan

  • The National Tribal Research Institute (NTRI) organized Adi-Vyakhyan, a conference on Tribal Development through the eyes of Tribal Thinkers, Writers and Leaders participating from different states of India as part of week-long celebrations of Jan Jatiya Gaurav Diwas .
  • Adi-Vyakhyan is  multi-dimensional event which looks at various aspects of tribal life, culture , language , livelihood among others through the eyes of tribal thinkers, leaders and writers.

Initiatives for tribal people

  • In recent years very important initiatives have been launched for tribal people by the Government including the recent Rs 24000 cr PVTG Mission, Aadi Adarsh Gram Yojana, Sickle Cell Mission, setting up 740 Eklavya Model Schools among others.
  • National Tribal Research Institute, New Delhi as an apex  Institute will now give more impetus to this decision-making by  providing inputs for realistic policy formulation for tribals, based on ground-level research

Global Digital Public Infrastructure Repository and a Social Impact Fund

  • Prime Minister of India announced the launch of two India-led initiatives: the Global Digital Public Infrastructure Repository and a Social Impact Fund aimed at promoting the development of Social Impact Fund to advance Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) in the Global South during the Virtual G20 Leaders’ Summit on 22nd November 2023.

G20 Digital Economy Working Group (DEWG)

  • The G20 Digital Economy Working Group (DEWG), chaired by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), has led the advancement of the global DPI Agenda.
  • The DEWG’s rigorous negotiation efforts have culminated in the first-ever multilateral consensus on DPI.
  • The Digital Economy Ministers’ Meeting (DEMM) unanimously endorsed three DPI deliverables, which included: a Framework for building DPI, mobilizing finances for DPI development in Low-and low-middle-income countries (LMICs), and the creation of a Global DPI Repository (GDPIR) for the exchange of information and best practices.

Global DPI Repository (GDPIR)

  • The MeitY has developed the GDPIR, which is a comprehensive resource hub, pooling essential lessons and expertise from G20 members and guest nations.
  • Its primary aim is to bridge the knowledge gap in the choices and methodologies required for the design, construction, deployment, and governance of DPIs.
  • The GDPIR showcases the information in a standardized format from countries and organizations that have developed DPIs at scale, incorporating elements such as maturity scales, source codes (where available), and governance frameworks.
  • Currently, the GDPIR features 54 DPIs from 16 countries

Social Impact Fund (SIF)

  • The Prime Minister also announced the creation of a Social Impact Fund (SIF), to which India has pledged an initial commitment of 25 million USD.
  • The SIF is envisioned as a government-led, multistakeholder initiative to fast-track DPI implementation in the global south.
  • This fund will offer financial support to provide upstream technical and non-technical assistance to countries in developing DPI systems.
  • The SIF offers a platform for all relevant stakeholders, including other governments, international organizations, and philanthropic entities, to contribute to this fund and help accelerate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs) through DPIs.

International Container Transhipment Port (ICTP)

A map of the great nicobar island

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  • Union Minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) visited the site of the proposed International Container Transhipment Port (ICTP), at Galathea Bay, Great Nicobar Island, and reviewed its progress
  • As envisaged in the Maritime India Vision 2030 as well as one of the key projects in the Amrit kaal Vision 2047, the proposed International Container Transhipment Port (ICTP) project has reached significant milestones, solidifying its position as a transformative initiative with a total estimated cost of about ₹44,000 Crores.
  • The development of this Mega Container Terminal is a part of the holistic development of Great Nicobar Island.
  • The project focuses on three key drivers, which can result in making it a leading container transshipment port, i.e. strategic location in terms of proximity (40 nautical miles) with the International shipping trade route, availability of natural water depth of over 20m and carrying capacity of transshipment cargo from all the Ports in the proximity including Indian Ports.

Program Sagarmala

  • The flagship program Sagarmala under MoPSW aims to modernize, mechanize, and enhance capacity of existing ports, making them more efficient and environment friendly.
  • There are four key intervention areas highlighted under Maritime India Vision 2030, which include capacity augmentation; developing world-class Mega Ports; development of transshipment hubs in Southern India; and infrastructure modernization.

Development of Ports

  • Currently, India has 5 Major Ports and 2 Non-Major Ports with greater than 100 MTPA capacities.
  • Based on detailed evaluation across key criteria for Mega Ports and emerging growth potential of clusters, 3 Mega Ports – Vadhavan-JNPT Cluster, Paradip Port, and Deendayal Port have been identified to be developed into Mega Ports with >300 M TPA capacity.
  • In addition to creating port clusters around the existing major ports, 2 new major ports – Vadhavan and Galathea Bay port are envisaged to be developed.
  • Vadhavan has a natural draft of about 20 meter and is therefore well suited for accommodating larger ships.
  • Similarly, proposed Galathea Bay Port, due to its strategic location in proximity to the East-West world-shipping corridor, is suitable to attract both gateway and transshipped cargo.
  • Ports in the country would also need to have higher draft available to accommodate larger vessels. Out of five ports from eight namely DPA, Vadhavan, VoCPA, Galathea Bay and PPA to have draft in the range of 18 meters to 23 meters by 2030. Further, 3 ports NMPA, CoPA and JNPA would be drafted in the range of 20 meters to 23 meters by 2047 in order to align with global standards.

Benefits of Galathea Bay

  • Currently, nearly 75% of India’s transshipped cargo is handled at ports outside India. Colombo, Singapore and Klang handle more than 85% of this cargo with 45% of this cargo handled at Colombo Port.
  • The strategic location of Galathea Bay is a huge advantage to EXIM trade as it lies on International shipping route.
  • With the development of ICTP at Galathea Bay, Indian ports will be able to attract more transshipment cargo.
  • Also, developing Galathea Bay Transshipment Port will accrue significant benefits such as forex savings, foreign direct investment, increased economic activity at other Indian Ports, enhanced logistics infrastructure and thus, efficiencies, employment generation, and increased revenue share.

Campbell Bay Port project progress

  • During this visit, Shri Sonowal also reviewed the Campbell Bay Port project progress. This project is being constructed with a cost of about Rs.17 crores.
  • The existing jetty at Campbell bay is inadequate for berthing of larger size vessels. Considering this extension of the jetty for 50m was taken up to facilitate safe berthing of bigger vessels. On completion of the project, vessels of 150mtr long will be able to berth which will provide more passenger and cargo movement between Great Nicobar and other islands.
  • This extension also will facilitate double berthing, which will add for double berthing which will add the port capacity.

India and Lithuania discuss Maritime relations

Klaipeda Map and Klaipeda Satellite Image

  • The meeting focused upon strengthening the maritime bilateral relations between India and Lithuania.
  • During the meeting, India expressed happiness upon the opening of India’s Resident Mission in Vilnius, Lithuania.
  • Both countries’ ministers discussed the unique advantage of the Klaipėda port, being ice-free throughout the year.
  • They highlighted the opportunity for mutual collaboration in this field, considering India’s expertise in port infrastructure development and Lithuania’s strategic location as a gateway to important industrial regions in Eastern Europe.

Know! about Klaipeda port

  • The Klaipeda port can accommodate vessels 400m in length, up to 59m. in width and with a maximum draught of 13.8m.
  • The Port of Klaipeda is the leading Baltic port for container transshipment.
  • It has the shortest land distances to the most important industrial regions of the East.
  • The main shipping lines to various European ports pass through Klaipeda.
  • The port is served by two railway stations and a highway which together link Klaipėda to Kaunas, Vilnius and cities in the nearby countries, such as Minsk, Kyiv and Moscow.

International Sugar Organisation (ISO)

  • In its 63rd council meeting, International Sugar Organisation (ISO), headquartered in London, has announced India to be the Chair of the organisation for 2024.
  • India has been the largest consumer and second largest producer of sugar in the world.
  • With about 15% share in global sugar consumption and about 20% production of sugar, Indian sugar trends affects the global markets profusely.
  • This leading position makes India as the most suitable nation to lead International Sugar Organisation (ISO) which is the apex international body on sugar and relating products having about 90 countries as members.
  • With Brazil in the Western Hemisphere, India is the market leader in Eastern Hemisphere for sugar market.
  • Now, being the 3rd largest country in the world in ethanol production after USA and Brazil, India has shown commitment towards green energy and its capability to twist the challenges of surplus sugar in domestic market to solution of fossil fuels imports and a tool to meet COP 26 targets for India.

EXERCISE SURYA KIRAN- XVII

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  • The Nepal Army contingent comprising of 334 personnel arrived in India to participate in 17th edition of Joint Military Exercise SURYA KIRAN.
  • The exercise will be conducted in Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand from 24th November to 07th December 2023.
  • It is an annual event and conducted alternatively in the two countries.
  • The Indian Army contingent comprising of 354 personnel is being led by a Battalion from the KUMAON Regiment.
  • Aim of the exercise is to enhance interoperability in jungle warfare, counter terrorism operations in mountainous terrain and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief under United Nations Charter on peace keeping operations.

National Gopal Ratna Awards

  • National Gopal Ratna Award  is one of the highest National Awards in the field of livestock and dairy sector, with an objective to recognize and encourage all individuals like Farmers rearing indigenous animals, AI Technicians and Dairy cooperative societies / Milk Producer Company/Dairy farmers Producers Organizations working in this sector.

The Award is conferred in three categories, namely,

  1. Best Dairy Farmer Rearing Indigenous Cattle/buffalo Breeds,
  2. Best Dairy Cooperative/ Milk Producer Company/ Dairy Farmer Producer Organization).
  3. Best Artificial Insemination Technician (AIT) and

National Oil Spill Disaster Contingency Plan (NOS DCP)

  • The Director General of the Indian Coast Guard, Rakesh Pal, chaired the 25th meeting of the National Oil Spill Disaster Contingency Plan (NOS DCP) on the coast of Vadinagar in Gujarat.
  • This crucial gathering brought together major stakeholders, including ports, petroleum companies, and the Indian Coast Guard, to discuss strategies for enhancing preparedness in handling potential oil spill disasters in Indian waters.

National Oil Spill Disaster Contingency Plan (NOSDCP)

  • The NOSDCP serves as a comprehensive plan designed to respond effectively to oil spills in Indian waters. Given India’s status as the third-largest importer of crude oil and a major chemical importer, the country receives significant volumes of oil through ships.
  • The meeting aimed to bolster the nation’s ability to manage the associated risks and respond promptly to potential disasters.

Lachit Diwas

  • Lachit Divas is a regional holiday observed in Assam on 24 November every year in remembrance of the brave Ahom army general Lachit Borphukan.
  • Lachit Borphukan was born on 24 November 1622 in Charaideo and is known for his military intelligence in the Battle of Saraighat.

Know! about Lachit Divas

  • The Battle of Saraighat was fought between the Ram Singh-led Mughal army and the Lachit Borphukan-led Ahom army in the year 1671 on the banks of the Brahmaputra river.
  • Chao Lachit was the Borphukan (Army general) of the Ahom army.
  • Ram Singh, the elder son of Amber ruler Mirza Raja Jai Singh, was commissioned by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb to invade the Ahom kingdom.
  • The Mughal army was larger and powerful than the Ahom army, but Lachit, with his powerful use of terrain, leadership skills and Guerrilla warfare saved Saraighat from the Mughal invasion, present-day in Guwahati.
  • He died a natural death in April 1672 in Jorhat, and his remains are present in the Lachit Maidan near Jorhat.
  • Every year, since 1999, the ‘Lachit Borphukan Gold Medal’ is awarded to the best cadet passing-out from the National Defence Academy.
  • The ‘Mahabir Lachit Award’ is given by the Tai Ahom Yuva Parishad in Assam to notable personalities. The cash prize of Rs.50000 and a sword is presented under this award.

National Cashew Day

  • The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Development Authority (APEDA), an organization under the Ministry of Commerce, Government of India, played an instrumental role as an export facilitator and flagged off its Cashew Nut shipment to Bangladesh, Qatar, Malaysia and the USA to mark National Cashew Day on November 23rd, 2023.
  • After Côte d’Ivoire, India is the second largest producer and exporter of Cashew Nuts with a share of more than 15%, followed by Vietnam in the world’s cashew export.
  • India’s top export destinations are the UAE, the Netherlands, Japan, and Saudi Arabia. Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are the major Cashew producing states in India.
  • India primarily exports Cashew Kernels with small quantities of Cashew Nut Shell Liquid and Cardanol.

Boita Bandana

  • President Droupadi Murmu flagged off a special boat commemorating Odisha’s maritime glory during the Boita Bandana in Paradip
  • Baliyatra is a unique festival celebrated in the memory of its glorious past.
  • Boita Bandana has deep historical significance, reflecting Odisha’s role as a major maritime power in ancient times.
  • The festival recalls the maritime adventures of merchants who sailed on Boitas to trade with countries like Java, Sumatra, Bali, and Indonesia
  • Boita Bandana, observed on the full moon day of Kartika, commemorates the historical voyages undertaken by Odia mariners, known as Sadhabas, who embarked on wooden boats or ‘Boitas’ to explore distant lands for trade and cultural exchange.

National Milk Day 2023

  • The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying is celebrating National Milk Day 2023 on 26 November 2023
  • This special day honours the 102nd birth anniversary of Dr. Verghese, the “Father of the White Revolution in India,” highlighting the achievement and importance of the dairy sector in our country.
  • The event will be organized in collaboration with the State Animal Husbandry Department, Assam Livestock Development Board, and NDDB and the prestigious National Gopal Ratna Awards 2023 will also be conferred in this event.

Hamfest India 2023

  • The two-day national convention, Hamfest India 2023, was inaugurated by Shri Devusinh Chauhan, the Minister of State for Communications, at Vigyan Bhawan, Science City, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, on November 25, 2023.
  • Hamfest India 2023 serves as a comprehensive platform for amateur radio enthusiasts, bringing together technical workshops, stalls showcasing innovations, a trade show, flea market, and various activities tailored for HAMs.
  • The event fosters connection among HAMs, offering opportunities for face-to-face meetings and providing insights into the latest communication techniques and technological advancements.
  • Hamfest India 2023 holds historical significance as the largest gathering of Indian HAMs, dating back to its inception in 1991.
  • It symbolizes the vibrant community of amateur radio operators in India and continues to play a crucial role in fostering innovation, knowledge sharing, and community building.
  • HAM operators engage in diverse activities such as contests, emergency communication support, experimentation, technical learning, and community engagement.
  • The hobby offers a blend of technical learning, global connectivity through radio waves, and a strong emphasis on innovation and service.

Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In)

  • The Central government has recently included the Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) in the list of organizations exempted from the Right to Information Act (RTI), 2005.
  • CERT-In, the national agency responsible for responding to computer security incidents, falls under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.

Know! about CERT-In

  • CERT-In plays a pivotal role in responding to computer security incidents promptly. Among its key objectives is the enhancement of security awareness among common citizens.
  • The agency operates under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, reflecting its significance in safeguarding digital infrastructure and addressing cybersecurity challenges.

Exemptions Under RTI Act

  • The RTI Act, enacted in 2005, exempts certain intelligence and security organizations from its purview. This exemption includes entities listed in the Second Schedule, with a provision excluding information related to allegations of corruption and human rights violations.

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