By admin: Jan. 10, 2023

Joshimath declared ‘landslide-subsidence zone’

Tags: State News

Joshimath, the gateway to Hemkund Sahib and Badrinath, has been declared a landslide-subsidence zone.

An overview of the news

  • Joshimath in Uttarakhand is currently facing landslides. Big cracks are being seen between people's houses and roads.

  • People are spending their nights outside in the bitter cold due to the fear of their houses collapsing.

  • Joshimath is a hill town located on the Rishikesh-Badrinath National Highway (NH-7) in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand.

  • The city is a tourist town as it serves as a rest stop for people visiting Badrinath, Auli, Valley of Flowers, and Hemkund Sahib.

What is the crisis of Joshimath?

  • Joshimath is a deposit of sand and stone - it is not the main rock - so it was not suitable for settlement.

  • Here the natural factors have been imbalanced due to vibration caused by explosions, heavy traffic etc. Lack of proper drainage facilities is also a reason for landslides.

  • A lot of water is seeping into the crystalline rocks below the surface, softening them further.

  • When water is not allowed to flow through its natural course, it builds up a lot of pressure above or below the ground.

17th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas

Tags: Important Days

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is celebrated every two years on 9 January to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community in the development of India.

An overview of the news

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the three-day 17th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas convention and a digital exhibition on the contribution of overseas Indians in the freedom struggle in Indore, Madhya Pradesh.

  • He also released a commemorative postage stamp 'Go Safe, Go Trained'.

  • The theme of the Convention is "Diaspora: Reliable Partners for India's Progress in the Age of Amrit".

About Pravasi Bhartiya Divas

  • On January 9, 1915, this day was chosen as Pravasi Bhartiya Divas to commemorate the return of Mahatma Gandhi to India from South Africa.

  • Mahatma Gandhi led India's freedom struggle and changed the lives of Indians forever.

  • Celebration of Pravasi Diwas started in India in 2003.

  • In the year 2015 it was revised and it was decided to celebrate Pravasi Bharatiya Divas every two years.

  • The 16th Pravasi Divas Conference was held in New Delhi with the theme "Contribution to Self-reliant India".

  • This day marks the contribution of the overseas Indian community in the development of India.

"Uttar Pradesh Global City" campaign has been launched by the Uttar Pradesh Government

Tags: State News

"Uttar Pradesh Global City" campaign has been launched by the Uttar Pradesh Government

A 100-day "Uttar Pradesh Global City" campaign has been launched by the 'Uttar Pradesh Government' ahead of the Global Investors Summit and G-20 Summit.

An overview of the news

  • This campaign will be implemented in all 762 urban bodies of the state.

  • The campaign has been launched by the state's Urban Development and Energy Minister Arvind Kumar Sharma.

  • The campaign aims to bring urban areas in the state up to global standards, which includes improving urban amenities, air quality, cleanliness and beautification as well as proper waste disposal.

State's preparation for Global Investors Summit and G-20 Summit 

  • Uttar Pradesh government to launch "Brand UP" ahead of G20 summit

  • The government will start a door-to-door garbage collection campaign from February 1 to March 31, 2023.

  • The government is also promoting proper waste disposal at hotels, restaurants and dhabas through the "Swachh Dhaba" programme, which will continue till March 2023, along with the "UP Global City" initiative.

  • “Swachh Virasat Abhiyan” will be launched by the state on January 14, 2023, which will focus on cleanliness of tourism, historical and religious places.

India, Panama sign agreement on cooperation in training diplomats

Tags: International Relations International News

India, Panama sign agreement on cooperation in training diplomats

External Affairs Minister Dr. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar signed an MoU to enhance cooperation in the training of diplomats during his bilateral meeting with Panamanian Foreign Minister Janaina Tevane Mencomo in Indore.

An overview of the news

  • The agreement was signed during the visit of the Foreign Minister of Panama to participate in the 17th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Conference.

  • The visit of the Panamanian Foreign Minister to India comes more than a month after the two sides held the 2nd Foreign Office Consultations (FOC) in Panama City on November 23, 2022.

  • During the consultations, both sides comprehensively reviewed their bilateral relations covering issues such as trade and investment, pharmaceuticals, capacity building, space cooperation and consular.

  • Both countries also discussed cooperation in multilateral fora.

  • Both countries agreed to hold the next round of consultations at a mutually convenient date in New Delhi.

About Panama 

  • Panama is the southernmost nation in Central America.

  • The country is known for the Panama Canal, a man-made waterway that opened in 1914. This canal passes through the country, connecting the Caribbean Sea (Atlantic) with the Pacific Ocean.

  • Capital – Panama City

  • Currency - Balboa

  • President – Laurentino Cortizo

World Hindi Day

Tags: Important Days

World Hindi Day

Every year on January 10, World Hindi Day is celebrated with the aim of spreading awareness about Hindi language among the people all over the world and presenting Hindi as an international language.

An overview of the news

  • Theme of World Hindi Day 2023 - 'Making Hindi the language of public opinion, without forgetting the importance of their mother tongue.'

Background of the day

  • The first World Hindi Conference was held at Nagpur on 10 January 1975 with delegates from 30 countries.

  • In memory of this conference, the Government of India had decided to celebrate January 10 as World Hindi Day from 2006.

How is World Hindi Day different from Hindi Day?

  • Hindi Diwas is celebrated every year on 14 September as Hindi was recognized as the official language on this day.

  • On September 14, 1949, the Constituent Assembly gave Hindi language the status of the official language of India.

Other information related to Hindi, the official language of India 

  • The Hindi language derives its name from the Persian word 'Hind', which means 'the land of the Indus River'.

  • It is the official language of India, English being the other official language.

  • Hindi is also a language included in the Eighth Schedule.

  • According to Article 343, the official language of the Union will be Hindi in Devanagari script.

  • Article 351 is related to 'Directions for the development of Hindi language'.

PM launches Aspirational Block Programme aimed at spurring development parameters

Tags: Government Schemes

PM launches Aspirational Block Programme aimed at spurring development parameters

A new initiative called the Aspirational Blocks Program was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 7 January with an aim to improve the performance of blocks within backward districts in various development parameters.

An overview of the news

  • The Aspirational Block Program (ABP) was announced in the Union Budget 2022-23.

  • Under this programme, 500 blocks across states have been identified for quarterly ranking based on their performance in areas such as health, education and nutrition.

  • It will initially cover 500 districts across 31 states and union territories, of which more than half of the blocks are located in six states – Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal.

  • The 500 blocks for ABP have been selected based on the recommendations of a four-member committee set up by the government last year.

  • ABP is based on the Aspirational District Program (ADP).

Aspirational District Program

  • The program was launched in January 2018 with an aim to rapidly and effectively transform some of the most underdeveloped districts in the country.

  • The scheme is implemented along with the Central and State schemes.

  • At the Government of India level, the program is administered by NITI Aayog.

Parameters for Best Aspirational District

  • It envisages rapid development of selected districts on the basis of a composite index based on five parameters

1. Health and Nutrition

2. Education

3. Financial Inclusion and Skill Development

4. agriculture and water resources

5. Basic Infrastructure

First meeting of Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion Working Group of G20 kicks off in Kolkata

Tags: National News

First meeting of Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion Working Group of G20 kicks off in Kolkata

The first 'Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion' meeting of the G20 began in Kolkata on 9 January in the presence of guests and dignitaries from across the world.

An overview of the news

  • The three-day meet will focus on principles of digital financial inclusion, remittance costs and SME finance availability.

  • It began with a symposium followed by a session on the role of digital public infrastructure for enhancing digital financial services.

  • State Bank of India, GTX, UIDAI and NABARD among others participated in the symposium highlighting India's digital innovations to further financial inclusion.

  • The G-20 delegates visited the stalls at the symposium and discussed digital innovations and initiatives showcasing innovations for digital inclusion of the masses.

  • UIDAI Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Saurabh Garg said, through this workshop, digital innovations can help in financial inclusion thereby helping in productivity gains.

  • Aadhaar, UPI, Trade Receivables, e-Sign or DigiLocker showcased in the workshop to G20 countries.

  • Its purpose is to exchange information so that people of different countries can be benefited.

  • During the first month of the G20 presidency, meetings were held in Udaipur, Mumbai and Bengaluru.

Vivek Agnihotri's 'The Kashmir Files' selected for Oscars 2023

Tags: Awards

Vivek Agnihotri's 'The Kashmir Files' selected for Oscars 2023

Vivek Agnihotri's film 'The Kashmir Files' has been shortlisted for Oscars 2023. That means now this film has qualified to get an Oscar.

An overview of the news

  • Actors Anupam Kher, Mithun Chakraborthy, Darshan Kumar and Pallavi Joshi are also shortlisted for the best actor category.

  • Rishabh Shetty's 'Kantara', Sanjay Leela Bhansali's 'Gangubai Kathiawadi', Paan Nalin's 'The Chello Show' and SS Rajamouli's 'RRR' have also made it to the Oscar shortlist.

  • Originally made in Kannada with a budget of less than Rs 16 crore, 'Kantara' went on to become one of the highest-grossing Kannada films with Rs 400 crore at the box office.

  •  Marathi films Me Vasantrao, Tujhysa Sathi Khai Hi, Kannada film 'Vikrant Rona' and R Madhavan's 'Rocketry: The Nambi Effect' have also been shortlisted for Oscars 2023. 

  • The film 'Rocketry: The Nambi Effect' is a biopic of ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan, who was accused of spying for ISRO and was later acquitted. 

  • Apart from these, Shaunak Sen and Kartiki Gonsalves' documentary 'All That Breathes' 'The Elephant Whispers' is also a part of the list.

India, Japan to hold 1st bilateral air exercise 'Veer Guardian-2023' from next week

Tags: Defence

 'Veer Guardian-2023' from next week

Exercise ‘Veer Guardian 2023’ between the Indian Air Force and the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) will be conducted from January 12 to 26 at Hyakuri air base and Iruma air base in Japan.

An overview of the news

  • The aim of the exercise is to strengthen mutual understanding and defence ties between the two air forces.

  • The Indian contingent will be represented by a contingent of around 150 personnel. India's 1 IL-78 mid-air refuelling and 4 Su-30MKI fighter aircraft will participate in it.

  • 4 F-15s and 4 F-2 fighter jets will be involved in this bilateral exercise from the Japanese side.

Other defence exercises involving India and Japan

  • Dharma Guardian - Held from 27 February to 10 March 2022 at Lagavi (Belgaum, Karnataka).

  • The 6th edition of JIMEX-2022 was organised in the Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal.

  • Malabar naval exercise - India and Japan, along with the United States and Australia, participate in a naval exercise called Malabar. Its 26th edition was organised in Japan in November 2022.

World's first vaccine for honeybees approved for use by United States

Tags: Science and Technology International News

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved the world's first insect vaccine, which has been developed to protect bees from a devastating bacterial disease.

An overview of the news

  • US researchers have developed a vaccine to target a disease called American foulbrood.

  • The disease is caused by Paenibacillus larval bacteria and once it reaches a bee population, it has the potential to completely destroy the colony.

  • Dalil Freitak of the University of Helsinki and his colleagues discovered an important egg yolk protein called vitellogenin.

  • This fundamental discovery laid the groundwork for a new type of insect vaccine, and the team's first target was honey bees.

Effectiveness of vaccine

  • The vaccine works by binding to the vitellogenin protein in inactivated bacterial cells so that when consumed by the queen bee it can be transferred directly to her larvae.

  • This vaccine is given to the queen bees in the form of royal jelly. She swallows it, and fragments of the vaccine get deposited in her ovaries.

  • After exposure to the vaccine, immunity develops in the developing larvae.

  • A successful clinical trial demonstrated that the vaccine is both safe and effective.

  • Progeny from a vaccinated queen bee are much less likely to contract bacterial disease.

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