By admin: March 16, 2023

2.18 Crore pucca houses completed till 11th March under Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana-Gramin

Tags: Government Schemes National News

2.18 Crore pucca houses completed till 11th March under Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana-Gramin

According to the government, 2 crore 18 lakh pucca houses have been built till March 11, 2023, under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G).

An overview of the news

  • In a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Rural Development Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti said that under the scheme, states and union territories have already sanctioned 2.85 crore pucca houses to the beneficiaries.

  • Out of these, a total of two crore 94 lakh houses have been allotted to the beneficiaries.

  • The government has set a target of constructing two crore 95 lakh pucca houses with basic facilities by March 2024.

About Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana 

  • The Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation launched the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana rural in 2016.

  • The scheme was initiated with the objective of ‘Housing for All by 2022’.

  • The scheme has 2 Components - Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) and Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Rural).

  • Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana Gramin was earlier called Indira Awas Yojana which was renamed in March 2016.

Indian Navy's P8I aircraft to participate in anti-submarine warfare exercise 'Sea Dragon 23'

Tags: Defence

nti-submarine warfare (ASW) exercise 'Sea Dragon 23'.

Indian Navy's long-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft P8I will participate in the third edition of the coordinated multilateral anti-submarine warfare (ASW) exercise 'Sea Dragon 23'.

An overview of the news

  • The exercise, scheduled for March 15-30, hosted by the US Navy, will emphasize coordinated anti-submarine warfare among participating nations.

  • The exercise will have representation from P8A of the US Navy as well as P8I of the Indian Navy, P1 of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force, CP 140 of the Royal Canadian Air Force and P3C of the Republic of Korea Navy (RoKN).

  • The P8I aircraft of the Indian Navy arrived at Guam, US on 14 March. 

About Sea Dragon Exercise

  • It is an annual US-led multinational exercise.

  • It is designed to exercise and discuss anti-submarine warfare tactics to operate simultaneously in response to conventional and non-conventional maritime security challenges in the Indo-Pacific region.

  • It will strengthen cooperation and develop mutual understanding between the participating navies and air forces.

  • The objective of the exercise is to achieve a high degree of synergy and coordination between the friendly navies.

  • It reflects shared values and a commitment to an open, inclusive Indo-Pacific.

PM Modi greets Sikh community on commencement of Nanakshahi Sammat 555

Tags: National News

Narendra Modi has congratulated the Sikh community across the world on the launch of Nanakshahi Sammat 555.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has congratulated the Sikh community across the world on the launch of Nanakshahi Sammat 555.

About Nanakshahi Sammat 555

  • It is a calendar system that was introduced by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) in 2003.

  • It is named after the founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak Dev Ji, on his 500th birth anniversary.

  • It is a tropical solar calendar used in Sikhism.

  • This calendar is used by Sikhs around the world to mark important dates and festivals in the Sikh calendar, including the birth anniversaries of the ten Sikh Gurus, the martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev, and the anniversary of the establishment of the Khalsa Panth.

  • The year begins with the month of Chet, which falls on 14 March.

Narender Singh Tomar inaugurates “AgriUnifest” in Bengaluru

Tags: State News

Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar on 15 March inaugurated a 5-day cultural program "AgriUnifest" in Bengaluru.

An overview of the news

  • It was organized by Bangalore Agricultural University in collaboration with the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR).

  • More than 2500 meritorious students from 60 State Agricultural Universities/Deemed Universities/Central Universities participated in it.

  • Students showcase their skills in 18 events under 5 disciplines (Music, Dance, Literature, Theatre, Fine Arts).

  • The All India Inter Agricultural University Youth Festival was conceptualized and initiated by ICAR during 1999-2000 with the objective of integrating Indian agriculture by connecting various Indian cultures.

  • Its objective was to nurture the talent of the youth of the Agricultural Universities and represent Indian culture.

  • Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Shobha Karandlaje, Karnataka Agriculture Minister B C Patil and ICAR Deputy Director General (Education) Dr R C Aggarwal  were present on the occasion.

About Indian Council of Agricultural Research

  • It is an autonomous body formerly known as the Imperial Council of Agricultural Research.

  • Headquarters - New Delhi

  • Established - 1929

  • The Union Minister of Agriculture serves as its president. Presently its president is Narendra Singh Tomar.

  • ICAR is the largest network of agricultural research and education institutes in the world.

US recognizes McMahon Line as international border

Tags: International News

The United States has recognized the McMahon Line as the international boundary between Arunachal Pradesh and China in a recently passed bipartisan resolution, calling it an "integral part of India".

An overview of the news

  • The resolution rejected Beijing’s claim that the northeastern state Arunachal Pradesh falls under Chinese territory.

  • In addition to recognizing the McMahon Line, the resolution also condemned Chinese provocations in the region, including the use of military force by China to change the status quo at the Line of Actual Control.

  • The resolution also condemned the construction of villages in disputed areas, the publication of maps of cities in Arunachal Pradesh, and the expansion of Beijing's territorial claims on Bhutan.

  • The resolution, titled 'Reaffirmation of Arunachal Pradesh as Indian territory and condemnation of China's provocative activities in South Asia', came after a major clash between the Indian and Chinese forces in Arunachal's Tawang in December last year.

What is the McMahon Line?

  • India and China share a 3,500 km long border which is disputed.

  • The line that delineates the boundary between the two countries is called the McMahon Line.

  • The border of India and China can be divided into three parts. Western Zone, Central Zone and Eastern Zone.

  • The line separating India and China is the McMahon Line although China considers the McMahon Line illegal.

  • The McMahon Line was drawn during the Simla Convention of 1914, officially described as a convention between Great Britain, China and Tibet.

Govt introduces bill in Lok Sabha to strengthen tri-services commanders' powers

Tags: National News

Govt introduces bill in Lok Sabha to strengthen tri-services commanders' powers

The Defense Ministry introduced a bill in Parliament on March 15, giving the three service chiefs disciplinary powers over all personnel of the three forces serving under them.

An overview of the news

  • The name of the bill is "Inter-Services Organisations (Command, Control and Discipline) Bill, 2023".

  • Minister of State for Defense Ajay Bhatt introduced the bill.

  • The Bill seeks to empower the Commander-in-Chief or the Officer-in-Command of Inter-Services Organizations for the maintenance of discipline and proper discharge of their duties in relation to service personnel.

  • According to the bill, the central government can constitute an Inter-Services Organization through a notification.

  • Presently the Indian Air Force, Army and Navy are governed by the Air Force Act, 1950, the Army Act, 1950 and the Navy Act, 1957 respectively.

  • Therefore, only the officers of these three armed forces are given disciplinary powers.

  • This has implications for the inter-service organizations of the services, such as the Andaman and Nicobar Command, the Defense Space Agency and joint training establishments such as the National Defense Academy (NDA).

  • Therefore, the Command-in-Chief or Officer-in-Command of such military organizations does not get disciplinary and administrative powers when attached to other services.

Green national highway corridor project to be implemented in four states

Tags: Government Schemes National News

India and the World Bank have signed aloan agreement for the construction of the Green National Highway Corridors Project (GNHCP) in four States.

An overview of the news

  • These four states are-Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.

  • Agreement has been signed for construction of 781 kilometer green national highway corridor in these states with a line of credit of $500 million.

  • Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari gave this information in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha on March 15.

About Green National Highways Corridor Project

  • It will assist the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) to construct 781 km of highways.

  • It will integrate safe and green technology designs such as local and marginal materials, industrial by-products and other bioengineering solutions.

  • It will also support the Bharatmala Pariyojana programme.

Components of the project

  • Sustainable development and maintenance of National Highways.

  • Institutional Capacity Enhancement and Road Safety. 

  • Research and Development.

Objective of GNHCP

  • To demonstrate safe and green highways keeping in mind climate resilience and use of green technologies by incorporating provisions for conservation of natural resources, use of cement-treated reclaimed asphalt pavement.

  • Use of local/marginal materials such as lime, fly ash, waste plastic, bio-engineering measures such as hydroseeding, coco/jute fibre, etc.

  • It will enhance the capacity of the Ministry to mainstream green technologies.

Joint India Singapore Exercise 'Bold Kurukshetra' concludes at Jodhpur

Tags: Defence

The Singapore Army and Indian Army participated in the 13th edition of Exercise 'Bold Kurukshetra', a bilateral exercise at Jodhpur Military Station, India from 6 to 13 March.

An overview of the news

  • For the first time, both the armies participated in a command post exercise, which included battalion and brigade level planning elements and computer wargaming.

  • Organized by the Indian Army, soldiers from the 42nd Battalion, Singapore Armored Regiment and the Armored Brigade of the Indian Army participated in the exercise.

  • The exercise developed a common understanding ofmechanized warfare across emerging threats and emerging technologies, developing interoperability through a computer simulation-based wargame using tactical procedures.

  • Both the armies not only learned about each other's operational drills and procedures, but also exchanged ideas and best practices being followed in the modern battlefield.

About Exercise 'Bold Kurukshetra'

  • The exercise is conducted within the scope of joint military training and exercise between the Singapore Army and the Indian Army.

  • First held in 2005, the exercise underlines the strong and long-standing bilateral defense ties between the two countries.

  • This exercise enhances cooperation between the two armies.

India and Luxembourg release joint Commemorative Postage Stamp

Tags: International News

India and Luxembourg celebrating 75 years of friendship on March 15, 2023. To mark the occasion, both the countries launched a joint  Commemorative Postage Stamp.

An Overview of the News

  • The Postage Stamp symbolises the long standing and strong ties between India and Luxembourg.

  • Both the countries have been cooperating in the steel sector for the last 20 years.

  • The Paul Worth company of Luxembourg has been working in India for the last two decades under this collaboration.

  • In November 2015, Luxembourg hosted the 12th Asia-Europe Foreign Ministers' Meeting.

  • The partnership between India and Luxembourg in various fields reflects their commitment to strengthen their friendship and explore future opportunities for cooperation.

About Luxembourg

  • Luxembourg is a small nation located in Europe and shares borders with Belgium, France, and Germany.

  • In 1994, Luxembourg City was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

  • From 2013 to 2014, Luxembourg served on the United Nations Security Council for the first time.

  • Prime Minister - Xavier Bettel

  • Currency - Euro

  • Official languages - Luxembourgish, French, German

National Immunisation Day: 16 March

Tags: Important Days

National Immunisation Day: 16 March

Every year on 16 March, India observes National Immunization Day to raise awareness about polio eradication worldwide.

An Overview of the News

  • India has set a target of vaccinating more than 324 million children through MR vaccination campaigns to eliminate measles and rubella.

  • Immunisation is an important aspect of public health that provides immunity to the body against pathogens that may cause diseases in the future.

  • Vaccines have successfully reduced the spread of many deadly diseases such as measles, chickenpox, tetanus, rubella, polio and, more recently, COVID-19.

Background of the day

  • National Immunization Day was first observed in 1995 when the Pulse Polio Immunization Program was launched to eradicate polio from India.

  • On March 16, 1995, the first dose of oral polio vaccine was administered in India as part of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative of the World Health Organization (WHO), which began in 1988.

  • The vaccination program was popularised through a nationwide campaign called 'Do Boond Zindagi Ki'.

  • Two drops of the vaccine are given orally to children aged 0-5 years in public health centres.

  • According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the last polio case in India was reported in 2011 in Howrah, West Bengal, and India was declared polio-free on March 27, 2014.

  • Every year National Immunization Day is celebrated under a specific theme and in 2022 its theme is 'Vaccines Work for Everyone'.  

World's eighth most polluted country according to Swiss firm IQAir report: India

Tags: Reports INDEX

Swiss firm IQAir Report has released its 'World Air Quality Report'

Swiss firm IQAir Report has released its 'World Air Quality Report', according to which India has moved up to the eighth position in the list of world's most polluted countries in 2022 as compared to fifth position last year.

An Overview of the News

  • According to this report, 39 of the world's 50 most polluted cities are in India.

  • The top 10 most polluted countries include Chad, Iraq, Pakistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Kuwait, India, Egypt and Tajikistan.

  • According to it, the transport sector is responsible for 20-35% of PM 2.5 pollution in India.

  • Lahore in Pakistan and Hotan in China are the two most polluted cities in the world, followed by Bhiwadi in Rajasthan at the third place and Delhi at the fourth place.

  • India has been placed at the eighth position in the latest report with PM2.5 level at 53.3.

  • According to this report, India and Pakistan have the worst air quality in the Central and South Asian region. About 60% of the population lives in areas where the concentration of PM2.5 particles is seven times higher than the WHO recommended levels.

  • The report concludes that globally, one in 10 people live in an area where air pollution is a health risk.

About Air Pollution

  • Air pollution can have significant impacts on both human health and the environment. 

  • The effects of air pollution vary depending on the type and concentration of pollutants, as well as the duration and frequency of exposure.

  • On human health, air pollution can cause respiratory problems, such as asthma, chronic bronchitis, and lung cancer. 

  • It can also lead to cardiovascular diseases, stroke, and premature death. 

  • The elderly, children, and people with pre-existing medical conditions are particularly vulnerable to the health effects of air pollution.

  • Air pollution also affects the environment, contributing to climate change and damaging ecosystems. 

  • Acid rain, for example, can harm forests, lakes, and aquatic life. Ground-level ozone, which is formed by the reaction of pollutants in the atmosphere, can damage crops and reduce agricultural yields. 

  • Air pollution can also contribute to global warming by trapping heat in the atmosphere and contributing to the greenhouse effect.

Ministry of Education organises a multimedia exhibition during the 2nd EdWG meeting of G20

Tags: National National News

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann.

On 15 March 2023 the Ministry of Education in partnership with IIT Ropar organised a multimedia exhibition at Khalsa College, Amritsar. The exhibition was held during the G20 2nd EdWG meeting.

An Overview of the News

  • Exhibition was inaugurated by Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann.

  • The exhibition has over 90 stalls from various organisations including NCERT, NBT, NSDC, IKS, IDEAS Technology Innovation Hub at ISI Kolkata, Punjab Tourism, IIM Amritsar, IIT Mandi, IIT Ropar and many start-ups.

  • The primary objective of the exhibition is to provide hands-on exposure and learning opportunities related to research and collaboration in academia.

  • The exhibition is a two day working group meeting to be held on 16-17 March 2023.

About the G20

  • The G20 (Group of Twenty) is an international forum consisting of 19 countries and the European Union, representing the world's leading economies. 

  • Its members include Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

  • The G20 was formed in 1999 with the aim of promoting international financial stability and sustainable economic growth. 

  • The G20 countries together account for around 80% of the world's gross domestic product (GDP), 75% of global trade, and two-thirds of the world's population. 

  • The G20 holds annual meetings where leaders discuss economic and financial issues facing the world, including trade, investment, innovation, and climate change.

RBI and Central Bank of UAE signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to promote innovation in financial products and services

Tags: Economy/Finance National News

Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) and examine interoperability between the CBUAE and the CBDCs of the RBI.

The MoU involves both the central banks working together to explore Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) and examine interoperability between the CBUAE and the CBDCs of the RBI.

An Overview of the News

  • The cooperation aims to increase efficiency and reduce costs in cross-border transactions, which further the economic ties between India and the UAE.

  • The MoU also includes technical cooperation and knowledge sharing on matters related to fintech and financial products and services.

  • The collaboration between RBI and CBUAE is an important step towards fostering innovation and collaboration in the area of FinTech.

  • The joint exploration of CBDCs and cross-border testing is expected to pave the way for increased efficiency and cost reduction in cross-border transactions, benefiting both India and the UAE.

About Reserve Bank of India (RBI)

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) was established through the Reserve Bank of India Act 1934 and began operations on April 1, 1935.

  • The Government of India nationalised the RBI in 1949, and since then it is wholly owned by the government.

  • Under the Banking Regulation Act of 1949, RBI has the authority to regulate banks in India.

  • RBI is also empowered to regulate Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) under the RBI Act of 1934.

  • The Payment and Settlement Act of 2007 designates the RBI as the regulator for digital payment systems.

  • The headquarter of RBI is located in Mumbai, India.

The developed drug gets DCGI approval

Tags: Science and Technology National News

The developed drug gets DCGI approval

Recently, DGCI developed an important drug, developed by DRDO technology that has been approved for radiological and nuclear emergencies.

An Overview of the News

  • The drug is called 'Prussian Blue' insoluble formulation and has been developed under the Technology Development Fund (TDF) scheme.

  • It has got approval from the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI).

  • The drug has been developed by the industry based on technology from the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS), Delhi, a laboratory of the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO).

  • This drug will be available under the trade names Pru-DecorpTM and PruDecorp-MG.

  • The formulation is used for the purification of Cesium and Thallium and its Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API).

  • It is one of the important medicines listed by the World Health Organization (WHO) for radiological and nuclear emergencies.

About Drug Controller General of India (DCGI):

  • The Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) is the head of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) in India.

  • DCGI is also the Central Licensing Authority for Medical Devices under the Medical Devices Rules 2017.

  • CDSCO is the Central Drug Regulatory Authority in India, overseen by the Drugs Controller General of India.

  • CDSCO works under the Directorate General of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, which is part of the Government of India.

  • The headquarters of CDSCO is located in New Delhi, and it also has six regional offices across the country.

  • CDSCO's mandate is to ensure the safety, efficacy and quality of medical products manufactured, imported and distributed in India by promoting transparency, accountability and uniformity in its services.

About Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO)

  • The Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) is an agency of the Government of India responsible for the research, development, and manufacture of advanced technology systems in the fields of defense, aerospace, and security. 

  • It was established in 1958 with the aim of designing and developing indigenous defense technologies to strengthen India's defense capabilities.

  • It operates under the Ministry of Defense and consists of more than 50 laboratories, centers, and establishments spread across the country. 

  • Its primary mission is to provide technological solutions for the country's defense and security requirements, which includes developing new technologies, systems, and platforms for the Indian Armed Forces.

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