1. India ranks 13th in Global Terrorism Index and Afghanistan tops
According to the 10th Global Terrorism Index (GTI) report, Afghanistan has remained the most affected country by terrorism for the fourth consecutive year while India is ranked 13th in this index.
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The GTI report lists India among countries with a "high" impact of terrorism.
According to the report, India is among the 25 worst terrorism affected countries in the world.
The Communist Party of India (Maoist) has been listed as the 12th deadliest terrorist group in the GTI reportfor the year 2022.
The report surveyed 120 countries, of which 56 did not choose war and terror as the biggest threat to their daily security.
The Global Terrorism Index is prepared by the Institute for Economics and Peace.
The Global Terrorism Index ranks 163 countries on four indicators over five years and has four factors - the number of deaths caused by terrorists per year, the number of terrorist incidents per year, the number of injuries caused by terrorists per year, and Total property damage caused by terrorism per year.
GTI is a report based on data collected from the Global Terrorism Database (GTD).
The GTD is collected by the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Response to Terrorism (START) at the University of Maryland.
2. World's eighth most polluted country according to Swiss firm IQAir report: India
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.
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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.
3. Uttarakhand's Rudraprayag, Tehri top landslide index: ISRO report
According to the recently released 'Landslide Atlas' report of ISRO's Hyderabad-based National Remote Sensing Center (NRSC), the two hilly districts of Uttarakhand, Rudraprayag and Tehri, are most prone to landslides.
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The National Remote Sensing Center has released a list of 147 districts prone to landslides across the country, in which Rudraprayag is at number one and Tehri at number two.
Kerala's Thrissur and Palakkad districts are at 3rd and 5th spots respectively.
Rajouri and Pulwama (J&K), Kozhikode and Malappuram (Kerala), and South Sikkim and East Sikkim (Sikkim) are the other high risk districts.
Rudraprayag, which tops the list, is also home to the famous Kedarnath shrine, which witnessed a devastating disaster in 2013 that killed thousands.
Sirobgarh and Narkota areas of Rudraprayag are most affected by landslides. Landslides are reported here throughout the year.
Landslide Prone Districts
According to the District Emergency Operation Centre, Rudraprayag has 32 old landslide zones, the maximum of which are located on NH-107.
Tehri district has over two dozen landslide zones, including Totaghatiwhich has been identified as a "very chronic landslide site".
Chamoli district, which recently came into limelight due to landslides in Joshimath, is at number 19 among the districts at risk of landslides.
As per the State Emergency Operation Center data, between 2018 and 2021, 253 landslides occurred in Uttarakhand, resulting in 127 deaths.
Over 11,000 landslides were recorded in Uttarakhand in the last two decades.
Among these, maximum landslide areas fall on Rishikesh-Rudraprayag-Chamoli-Badrinath, Rudraprayag-Ukhimath-Kedarnath, Chamoli-Ukhimath, Rishikesh-Uttarkashi-Gangotri route.
4. Mumbai's famous "vada pav" ranked 13th in the list of best sandwiches in the world
Mumbai's famous street food "vada pav" has been ranked number 13 on a list of the top 50 best rated sandwiches in the world.
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The list is published by TasteAtlas, a Croatian-based food travel guide website.
Turkey's tombik sandwich tops the list. Second is Peru's Butifara Sandwich and Argentina's De Lomo Sandwich is third.
About 'Vada Pav'
Vada pav street food is said to have originated from a street vendor named Ashok Vaidya, who operated near Dadar railway station in the 1960s and 1970s.
Ashoka thought of a way to satisfy the hunger of the starving workers, and concluded that the ideal dish should be portable, inexpensive, and easy to prepare.
Ashok made Vada Pav and its popularity skyrocketed.
Traditionally vada pav is made of spiced mashed potatoes, deep fried in chickpea batter and pav, which is also known as white bread roll.
5. India ranks 42 in 55 countries on International IP Index
India has been ranked 42 out of 55 countries in the latest International IP Index report by the US Chamber of Commerce.
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The United States ranks first in the 2023 index, followed by the UK and France.
According to the report, India's size and economic influence is growing on the world stage.
India is poised to become a leader for emerging markets seeking to transform their economies through IP-driven innovation.
India has taken steps to improve enforcement against copyright-infringement and provides a best-in-class framework to promote better understanding and use of IP assets.
Creating a new model to address long-standing flaws in the IP framework will be critical to India's continued economic growth, according to the report.
Continued strong crackdown on copyright piracy through issuance of "dynamic" injunction orders, improved crackdown on online trademark infringement and damages, and generous R&D and IP-based tax incentives are some of India's strong points.
One of India's key areas of weakness is the 2021 dissolution of the IP Appellate Board.
Limited framework for protection of biopharmaceutical IP rights and patentability requirements that are outside international standards are other weaknesses in India.
About International Intellectual Property Index
It is an annual report compiled by the US Chambers of Commerce.
It evaluates the protection of IP rights in the world's 55 major economies, which represent approximately 90% of global GDP.
The report covers topics ranging from patent and copyright laws to the potential for monetizing IP assets and the ratification of international agreements.
The index aims to help guide nations towards a brighter economic future marked by greater innovation, creativity and competitiveness.
Intellectual Property Rights
Intellectual property rights are the rights given to persons/companies over the creations of their minds.
They usually give the creator an exclusive right over the use of his/her creation for a certain period of time.
For e.g. Development of a new software or discovery of new medicine.
6. Global Quality Infrastructure Index (GQII) 2021
India's overall QI system ranking stood at 10th position in the recently released Global Quality Infrastructure Index (GQII) 2021.
An overview of the news:
India's national accreditation system under the Quality Council of India (QCI) has been ranked 5th.
While it has been ranked 9th in the standardisation system and 21st in the world in the metrology system (under NPL-CSIR).
The GQII lists 184 countries in the world based on the Quality of Infrastructure (QI).
Ranking of other countries:
Germany has topped the list.
It was followed by China, USA, UK, Japan and France at the second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth places respectively.
Quality Council of India (QCI):
The Quality Council of India (QCI) was established in 1996 as a national body for accreditation.
QCI is a non-profit organisation registered under the Societies Registration Act XXI of the year 1860.
Headquarters - New Delhi
Chairman - Jakshay Shah
General Secretary - Dr. Ravi P. Singh
7. UP has the highest number of colleges in the country: AISHE 2020-21 report
The Union Ministry of Education has released the All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) 2020-2021.
According to the report Uttar Pradesh has the highest number of colleges in the country, followed by Maharashtra and Karnataka.
Highlight of the report
The top 10 states in terms of number of colleges in India - Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Telangana and Kerala, each having at least 29 or more colleges per lakh population.
There are 8,114 colleges in Uttar Pradesh and 32 colleges per one lakh population.
Similarly, Maharashtra is at number two with 4,532 colleges and 34 colleges per lakh population.
Karnataka ranks third with 4,233 colleges and 62 colleges per lakh population, while Rajasthan ranks fourth with 3,694 colleges and 40 colleges per lakh population.
Tamil Nadu ranks fifth with 2,667 colleges and a college density of 40.
Madhya Pradesh ranks sixth with 2,610 colleges and 29 colleges per lakh population, while Andhra Pradesh ranks seventh with 2,601 colleges and 49 colleges per lakh population.
At the eighth position is Gujarat with 2,267 colleges and 31 colleges per one lakh population.
Most of the colleges offer undergraduate level programs only.
Only 2.9 percent colleges offer PhD level programs and 55.2 percent offer postgraduate level programmes.
The report shows a nationwide increase of 7.5% in student enrollment in 2020-21 as compared to 2019-20.
Gender Parity Index (GPI)
The Gross Enrollment Ratio (GER) for the age group 18-23 years has increased from 25.6% in 2019-20 to 27.3% in 2020-21.
Gender Parity Index (GPI), the ratio of female GER to male GER, has increased from 1 in 2017-18 to 1.05 in 2020-21.
The female enrollment in North East states in 2020-21 is 6.14 lakh, which is higher than the male enrollment of 5.92 lakh, for every 100 male students, there are 104 female students in the North East region.
About AISHE Survey
The Ministry of Education has been conducting this survey since 2011, it includes higher educational institutions located in India.
The survey collects information on various parameters such as student enrolment, teacher data, infrastructural, financial etc.
In AISHE 2020-21, for the first time data collection has been done using a completely online data collection platform developed by the Department of Higher Education through National Informatics Center (NIC).
8. Reliance Jio among the top 25 strongest brands in the world
Reliance Jio, India's leading private sector telecom service provider, has been included in the world's top 25 strong brands.
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According to the latest 'Global 500-2023' report released by Brand Finance, Jio has emerged as the strongest brand in India and is ranked 9th among the 25 strongest brands in the world.
Jio has been given a score of 90.2 in the Strong Brand Index.
Brands like EY, Coca Cola, Accenture, Porsche and Google precede Jio in the list. Whereas giants like Apple, Amazon, Alibaba and Pepsi have been left behind by Reliance Jio.
The index is prepared on the basis of certain parameters such as marketing spend, awareness, consideration, trust and market share.
Reliance Jio India's largest network
With over 400 million subscribers, Reliance Jio is the largest mobile operator in India and the third largest in the world.
Jio formally launched its 4G services on 5 September 2016.
Chairman - Akash Ambani
Headquarters - Mumbai
9. 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.
10. Global Fire Power Index 2023
The Global Firepower Report 2023 has rankedIndia as the 4th most powerful army in the world.
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145 countries are ranked this year in the Global Firepower Report.
Global Firepower ranks countries based on troop strength, national resources, financial status, logistics and geographic scale.
Themost powerful country in the world is the United States of America, followed by Russia, China, India.
Most powerful country in the Middle East and North African region
According to the Global Firepower Military Index 2023, Turkey has once again emerged as the most powerful country in the Middle East and North African region. Turkey has been placed at the 11th position in the global ranking.
Egypt and Iran are ranked second and third respectively in this index, while Egypt is ranked 14th and Iran is ranked 17th in the global ranking.
Egypt is ranked as the most powerful Arab country in terms of its military power.
Saudi Arabia emerged as the most powerful country among the Gulf Cooperation Council countries and Saudi Arabia has the second most powerful military among the Arab countries. It is placed at the 22nd position in the global ranking.
Algeria is the most powerful of the North African countries, ranking 26th on the global index.
In this index, Lebanon has been described as the weakest country in the Middle East.
Top 10 Countries on Global Power Index 2023
5. United Kingdom
6. South Korea