By admin: Jan. 20, 2023

Controversy over BBC documentary "India: The Modi Question"

Tags: National News

The government has condemned theBBC documentary "India: The Modi Question" on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, terming it a propaganda and an attempt to defame.

An overview of the news

  • This documentary on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) questions his leadership as the state's chief minister during theGujarat riots.

  • In 2002, violence broke out after a train carrying Hindu pilgrims caught fire in Godhra, Gujarat, killing more than 1,000 people, most of them Muslims.

  • The BBC documentary has been criticised since its release. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has also lodged a deep objection to this.

  • The Indian Ministry of External Affairs has termed it as a mere propaganda gimmick and a product of colonial mentality.

  • A Supreme Court-appointed inquiry found no evidence of any wrongdoing by PM Modi, who was the chief minister of Gujarat when the riots broke out in February 2002.

What is ‘India: The Modi Question’?

  • It is a TV series on 2002 riots in Gujarat which occurred during PM Modi’s time as Chief Minister of the state.

  • It is a two-part series broadcast on BBC Two.

  • The series explores how "the office of Narendra Modi has been affected by persistent allegations about his government's attitude towards India's Muslim population".

A rare low altitude basalt plateau discovered in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra

Tags: Environment

Recently a rare low altitude basalt plateau has been discovered in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra.

An overview of the news 

  • A basalt plateau discovered in the Thane region of the Western Ghats could prove to be a storehouse of information on 76 species of plants and shrubs from 24 different families.

  • This rare low altitude basalt plateau has been discovered in Manjare village of Thane district by ARI team led by Dr. Mandar Datar.

  • This is the fourth type of plateau recognized in this region; The last three are high and low altitude laterite and high altitude basalt plateaus.

  • The discovery may help to understand the impact of climate change on species survival and raise awareness of the need to protect rocky outcrops around the world and the importance of their enormous biodiversity.

Western Ghats:

  • The Western Ghats are also known as the Sahyadri Hills.

  • The Western Ghats is one of the four global biodiversity hotspots in India.

  • The Western Ghats are made up of a range of mountains in the states of Kerala, Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

  • It is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

  • Anamudi peak in Kerala is the highest peak in the Western Ghats.

India to become $26 trillion economy by 2047: EY report

Tags: Reports Economy/Finance

An EY report states that the Indian economy is likely to reach $26 trillion by the year 2047, which will also be the 100th year of India's independence.

An overview of the news

  • The report also pointed out that the country's per capita income would cross $15,000, making it among the top developed economies.

  • The report also pointed out that despite maintaining a steady but modest growth rate of 6% per annum, India would still be able to become a $26 trillion economy by 2047–48, with per capita income six times higher than current levels.

  • According to the report certain factors have contributed to bring India to a position of high and sustainable growth.

  • These include accelerated pace of economic reforms in critical areas such as social inclusion, financial inclusion, fiscal, physical and digital infrastructure.

  • This has ultimately resulted in increased global competitiveness of Indian businesses and entrepreneurs.

  • An area with major potential is services exports which are set to grow by 14% over the past two decades to reach $254.5 billion in 2021-22.

  • Other enabling areas include 'digitalisation'.

Government’s efforts

  • Government's focus on increasing the country's digital infrastructure

  • Efforts towards e-governance

  • A strong digital payment ecosystem

  • Introduction of digital services in almost all domains

  • Large telecom subscriber base of 1.2 billion

  • 837 million internet users, etc.

Focus Areas

  • macroeconomic stability,

  • more energy independence,

  • ease of doing business,

  • power sector reform

What is EY report?

  • Launched in 2011, EY Reporting is EY Global Assurance’s insights hub.

  • It provides thought leadership on the issues global companies face in communicating corporate performance.

Brand Guardianship Index 2023 : Mukesh Ambani is No1 among Indians, 2nd globally


India’s Billionaire Mukesh Ambani has overtaken the likes of Satya Nadella of Microsoft and Google's Sundar Pichai to be ranked No.1 among Indians and second globally on the Brand Guardianship Index 2023.

An overview of the news

  • Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang and Reliance Industries Ltd's Mukesh Ambani are ranked first and secondrespectively in the Index (BGI).

  • Microsoft's Satya Nadella, who topped last year, is at number three.

  • Most of the top 10 in the index are from India or Indian-origin CEOs.

  • Adobe’s Shantanu Narayen and Pichai are ranked fourth and fifth. 

  • Deloitte's Punit Rejen is at No.6 and Tata group chairman Natarajan Chandrasekaran at the eighth spot.

  • Piyush Gupta of DBS is at No 9.

  • Mukesh Ambani, Managing Director and Chairman of Reliance is the longest serving CEO in the ranking at 40 years.

About Brand Guardianship Index

  • The Brand Guardianship Index consists of an 'equity' factor, which reflects current beliefs, a 'performance' factor, which reflects the concrete results of these beliefs, and an 'investment' factor, which supports future performance.

  • It is based on a survey of 1,000 market analysts and journalists.

  • Only 50% of the respondents to the survey conducted in November-December 2022 live in India.

India produces record over 5,000 lakh metric tons of sugarcane in sugar season 2021-22

Tags: Economy/Finance National News

According to the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution a record more than 5,000 Lakh Metric Tons (LMT) sugarcane was produced during the 2021-22 sugar season. 

An overview of the news

  • About 394 LMT sugar was produced from about 3,574 LMT sugarcane. Out of this, 36 LMT sugar was diverted for ethanol production.

  • During 2021-22, sugar mills received revenue of more than 20 thousand crore rupees from the sale of ethanol.

  • During the sugar season between October and September 2021-22, India has emerged as the world's largest producer and consumer of sugar.

  • India has also become the second largest sugar exporter in the world after Brazil.

  • Cane dues for sugar season 2021-22 are less than Rs 2,300 crore indicating that 98% of cane dues have already been cleared. 

  • For Sugar Season 2020-21, about 99.98% cane dues are cleared.

  • Despite the record high international sugar prices, the domestic sugar prices are stable and are in the range of Rs 32-35 per kg.

  • The average retail price of sugar in the country is around Rs 41.50/kg and is likely to remain in the range of Rs 37-43/kg in the coming months.

The largest producer of sugarcane in the world

  • Brazil is the largest producer of sugarcane in the world. India is the second largest producer of sugarcane.

  • Brazil produced about 32 million tons of sugar in 2021-22.

Major sugarcane-producing states in India

  • Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Karnataka account for nearly 80 percent of the total sugar production in the country.

  • The other major sugarcane-producing states are Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Haryana, and Punjab.

  • Since 2010-11, India has consistently produced surplus sugar, comfortably exceeding the domestic requirements.

Union Ministry of Tourism participates in FITUR, the world's largest International Travel Exhibition in Madrid

Tags: Summits International News

The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, is participating in FITUR, the world's largest international travel exhibition in Madrid.

An overview of the news

  • Feria Internacional del Turismo or FITUR is being hosted in Spain from January 18-22.

  • India's participation in FITUR is important for promoting tourism.

  • The Ministry of Tourism has taken up 253 square metres of space, with over 30 participants exhibiting along with the India Pavilion, to participate in the exhibition.

  • The India Pavilion was inaugurated by Dinesh K Patnaik, Indian Ambassador to Spain.

  • The Indian delegation, led by Rakesh Kumar Verma, Additional Secretary in the Tourism Ministry, participated in key business meetings with the senior leadership of Melia Hotels International, Palladium Hotel Group, Expedia Group, World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

  • The first Global Tourism Investors Summit will be organised by the Ministry of Tourism in New Delhi from 10 to 12 April.

National AIDS Control Organisation forms Largest Human Red Ribbon Chain in Kalinga Stadium of Bhubaneswar

Tags: State News

On 19 January 2023 Odisha State AIDS Control Society organised an awareness program on HIV AIDS in coordination with the Department of Sports and Youth Services and Hockey India under the leadership of National AIDS Control Organization (NACO).

An overview of the news

  • The event created the 'Largest Human Red Ribbon Chain' at the East Gallery of the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha.

  • The event was attended by 4,800 students from various schools, Red Ribbon Club members from colleges, civil society and participants from Mission Shakti Department.

  • Odisha has a low HIV prevalence in the state, with an adult prevalence of 0.14% and an estimated 52,108 people living with HIV (PLHIV), according to government data.

  • Sustainable Development Goal 3.3 has been set to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

  • To achieve this goal, awareness activities are being strengthened among the general public as well as high-risk groups in Odisha about the services offered under the leadership of the National AIDS Control Programme.

National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO)

  • Established in 1992, NACO is a division of India's Ministry of Health and Family Welfare that provides leadership to HIV/AIDS control programs in India through 35 HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control Societies.

  • Along with drug control authorities, NACO also provides joint oversight of blood bank licensing, blood donation activities, and transfusion transmitted infection testing and reporting.

  • NACO also makes HIV estimates biennially (every 2 years) in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) – National Institute of Medical Statistics (NIMS).

8th Annual General Body Meeting of Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE)

Tags: Economy/Finance National News

Union Minister for Tourism, Culture G Kishan Reddy and Union Minister for Education and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Dharmendra Pradhan co-chaired the 18th Annual General Meeting of the Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE), Guwahati on 19 January.

An overview of the news

  • The Ministers reviewed the functioning of the Institute and discussed the way forward.

  • During the meeting, a holistic approach of the government for skill development in the North Eastern region was suggested.

  • Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan suggested that the focus should be on future skills and IIEs should work in tandem with multiple ministries at the grassroots level.

  • The institute should tie up with major centres of excellence like IITs and IIMs and provide degree courses for students in cutting edge courses like data analytics etc.

  • Both the ministers also co-chaired a meeting to review the preparedness of several activities under 'Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat'.

Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE)

  • It was established in the year 1993 at Guwahati by the then Ministry of Industry (now Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises), Government of India.

  • It is an autonomous national institute that conducts training, research and consultancy activities in small and micro enterprises with a focus on entrepreneurship development.

  • It aims to promote entrepreneurship and provide research and consultancy for entrepreneurship development.

Manoj Ahuja, Secretary (Agriculture) inaugurates one-day India Cold Chain Conclave

Tags: National National News

The Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare in association with PHD Chamber of Commerce & Industry (PHDCCI) and National Center for Cold Chain Development (NCCD) organised a one day exhibition and conference as “Cold Chain Conclave” on 19th January in New Delhi.

An overview of the news

  • The conclave and exhibition was inaugurated by Manoj Ahuja, Secretary, Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.

  • The conference was organised with an aim to bring all the stakeholders together on a common platform where they can develop the industry in a sustainable manner and explore ways to reduce post-harvest losses with relevant technologies.

  • An exhibition was also organised by industry leaders to showcase innovations and excellence in the cold chain sector.

  • Technological innovation is critical for the growth and development of the Indian cold chain industry.

  • During the Conclave, approval of the product specific horticulture clusters in various parts of the country under the Horticulture Cluster Development Programme of Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare was accorded.

  • During the conclave, product specific horticulture clusters were approved in different parts of the country under the Horticulture Cluster Development Program of the Ministry of Agriculture.

Aruna Miller becomes first Indian-American to be elected Lieutenant Governor of Maryland

Tags: Person in news

Hyderabad-born Aruna Miller has become the first Indian-American politician to be elected as the lieutenant governor of the US state of Maryland.

An overview of the news

  • Aruna Miller was sworn in as the 10th Lieutenant Governor of the State of Maryland with her hand on the Bhagavad Gita.

  • Miller has been a two-term member of the Maryland House of Delegates from 2010 to 2018.

  • In her inaugural address, Miller, 58, credited her success to her family.

  • Miller's father was a mechanical engineer who immigrated to the US in the late 1960s.

  • Aruna Miller got US citizenship in the year 2000.

  • Maryland is a state in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States.

Blacks in three high positions in Maryland

  • Wes Moore is elected governor, Aruna becomes lieutenant governor, and Anthony Browne becomes attorney general.

Joint Training Exercise Cyclone-I

Tags: Defence

The first ever joint exercise between Indian and Egyptian armies “Cyclone-I” is being conducted in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan from January 14, 2023.

An overview of the news

  • This military exercise conducted in the deserts of Rajasthan will last for 14 days.

  • Its objective is to promote defense cooperation between the two countries and to share mutual coordination, operational and professional skills of special forces in the desert area.

  • The exercise includes anti-terrorist, reconnaissance, assault and other special operations.

  • During the exercise, the two countries will share skills such as advanced special forces sniping, combat-free fall, reconnaissance, surveillance, target acquisition and exchange of information on weapons, equipment, innovations, techniques, strategies and procedures. 

About Egypt

  • Egypt is a country located in North Africa.

  • Egypt is home to famous monuments such as the Giza Pyramid Complex and the Great Sphinx. One of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Pyramids of Giza are built on the banks of the Nile River. The Great Pyramid of Giza was built in 2560 BC.

  • Capital - Cairo

  • President – Abdel Fattah el-Sisi

  • Currency - Egyptian pound

Fifth Kalvari class submarine “Vagir” inducted into Navy

Tags: Defence

The fifth Kalvari class submarine "Vagir" will be commissioned (commissioned) by the Indian Navy on 23 January 2023.

An overview of the news

  • The 6 Kalvari class submarines are being built in India by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) Mumbai in collaboration with M/s Naval Group, France.

  • Navy Chief Admiral R Hari Kumar will attend the event as the chief guest.

  • The first four Kalvari class submarines have already been commissioned into the Indian Navy.

  • Formerly Vagir was commissioned on 01 November 1973 and decommissioned on 07 January 2001 after three decades of service.

  • Again 'Vagir' submarine which was launched on 12 Nov 20 has the distinction of being completed in the shortest construction time among all indigenously built submarines so far.

  • It was handed over to the Indian Navy by M/s MDL on 20 December 2022.

  • It is capable of attacking underwater or on the surface with torpedoes and tube-launched anti-ship missiles.

  • Five other Kalvari class submarines

  • INS Kalvari - It was launched on 27 October 2015 and commissioned on 14 December 2017.

  • INS Khanderi - It was launched on 12 January 2017 and commissioned on 28 September 2019.

  • INS Karanj - It was launched on January 31, 2018 and commissioned on March 10, 2021.

  • INS Vela - It was launched on 6 May 2019 and commissioned on 25 November 2021.

  • INS Vagsheer - It was launched in April 2022.

Inauguration of International Science Literature Festival – Vigyanika

Tags: Festivals National News

The Science Literature Festival 'Vigyanika' is being organized at the Indian International Science Festival (IISF), Bhopal during the period 22 - 23 January, 2023.

An overview of the news 

  • The "Science Literature Festival" is being organized as a part of the 8th India International Science Festival (IISF).

  • The 8th IISF is being jointly organized by the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Ministry of Science and Technology and Vigyan Bharati.

  • The theme of this edition of IISF is “Moving towards Amrit Kaal with Science, Technology and Innovation”.

  • Vigyanika is being organized with the objective of promoting science through science poetry, multilingual scientific literature, science drama and folk art and showcasing the rich heritage of India by inculcating scientific temper among the masses.

  • Around 300 science writers, artists, journalists, young and budding writers, researchers, college students, children, science enthusiasts, science policy makers and citizens are expected to participate in the event.

  • IISF is being organized annually since 2015.

Ministry of Shipping, Waterways and Ports launches 'Bharat Pravah' initiative

Tags: National News

Shipping, Waterways and Ports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has launched the initiative ‘Bharat Pravah-India along its Shores’.

An overview of the news 

Bharat Pravah:

  • The objective of this initiative is to highlight the importance of rivers-ports-shipping in the everyday life of the common man through literature, dialogue and communication.

  • It will also highlight the challenges, policy issues and future goals related to the maritime sector.

Importance of Ports in India:

  • India has 7,500 km of coastline, 14,500 km of navigable potential waterways and strategic locations along major international maritime trade routes.

  • About 95% of India's trade by volume and 65% by value is done through sea transport facilitated by ports.

  • India does about 35% containerization, while other developing countries do 62% to 65% containerization.

  • Currently, India does more bulk shipping than using containers, although we are making rapid progress towards containerization.

  • India's share in global trade is only 2%. The trade balance is in favor of imports. India ranks 44th in the Logistics Performance Index.

Constitution of Judicial Board for Major Ports notified

Tags: National News

The Major Ports Judicial Board Rules, 2023 have been notified in the Gazette by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways on 17 January 2023.

An overview of the news

  • The Major Port Authorities Act, 2021 was enacted on 03 January 2021.

  • Section 54 of the Act envisaged the constitution of a Judicial Board, which would carry out the functions prescribed under Section 58 of the Major Port Authorities Act, 2021.

  • This judicial board will consist of 3 members, including a presiding officer and two members.

  • The presiding officer included in the Judicial Board shall be a retired Judge of the Supreme Court of India or a retired Chief Justice of a High Court.

  • The other two members shall be a retired Chief Secretary or equivalent to the State Government or a retired Secretary to the Government of India or equivalent.

  • The presiding officer and members of this judicial board will be appointed on the basis of the recommendation of a selection committee.

  • After the formation of this judicial board, the tariff authority for major ports will cease to exist.

Praveen Sharma appointed as Director of National Health Authority

Tags: Person in news

Praveen Sharma has been appointed as the Director in the National Health Authority (Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission) under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

An overview of the news 

  • Sharma has been appointed to the post under the Central Staffing Scheme for a period of five years.

  • Sharma is a 2005 batch Indian Defense Service of Engineers (IDSE) officer.

National Health Authority (NHA)

  • The National Health Authority implements India's public health insurance scheme called "Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY)".

  • NHA was established to implement PM-JAY at the national level.

About Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission

  • Beginning - 27 September 2021 by PM Narendra Modi

  • It connects digital health solutions of hospitals across the country.

  • It not only simplifies the procedures of the hospitals but also enhances the ease of living.

  • With the implementation of this scheme, old medical records may not get destroyed as each and every record will be stored digitally.

  • The project has been implemented in pilot phase in six states and union territories.

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