Rashtriya Vigyan Puraskar: Govt Introduced New Set of National Awards in the Field of Science, Tech & Innovation
The Government of India(GoI) introduced Rashtriya Vigyan Puraskar (RVP), a new set of National Awards in the field of Science, Technology and Innovation.
- The objective of the award is to recognize the notable and inspiring contribution made by scientists, technologists, and innovators individually or in teams in various fields of science, technology and innovation.
- RVP is set to be given in four distinct categories: Vigyan Ratna (VR) award; Vigyan Shri (VS) award; Vigyan Yuva-Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar (VY–SSB) award and Vigyan Team (VT) award
About Ministry of Science and Technology:
Ministers of State (independent Charges) – Dr. Jitendra Singh (Constituency – Udhampur, Jammu and Kashmir)
WHO Report: India’s Ultra Food-Processing Sector grew at 13.37% CAGR from 2011-2021i.According to the World Health Organization (WHO)’s report titled “Growth of ultra-processed foods in India- An analysis of trends, issues and policy recommendations”, India’s Ultra-Processed Food Sector grew at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 13.37 % in retail sales value from 2011 to 2021.
ii.This report has been developed by the WHO Country Office for India in collaboration with the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER).
iii.As per the British Heart Foundation, Ultra-processed foods are items with long shelf lives that usually contain five or more ingredients, including preservatives, emulsifiers, sweeteners, and artificial colors and flavors.
About World Health Organization (WHO):
Director-General– Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
Headquarters– Geneva, Switzerland
INS ‘Nireekshak‘ Successfully Conducts Vital Mixed Gas Diving Training Sessions As Part Of IN-SLN Divex 23Indian Naval Ship (INS) Nireekshak(A-15), the Diving Support and Submarine Rescue Vessel (DSRV) of the Indian Navy successfully conducted vital Mixed Gas Diving training sessions.
- This is a part of eight-day diving training deployment exercise(14-21st September 2023) IN-SLN Divex 23 between India and Sri Lanka.
- This is aligned with India’s ‘Neighborhood First‘ policy for capacity building in neighbouring nations.
Mixed Gas Diving:
Mixed gas diving involves the use of breathing gases other than the standard air mixture of approximately 21% oxygen and 79% nitrogen.
- The purpose of using mixed gases in diving is to extend dive times, increase safety, and allow divers to explore deeper underwater environments.
Other Activities Carried Out:
The diving teams of both the Navies participated in diving exercises towards enhancing interoperability, cohesiveness and exchange of Best Practices.
About INS Nireekshak:
i.The ship is equipped with state-of-the-art diving systems and is capable of undertaking Saturation and Submarine rescue dives.
- INS Nireekshak is well-equipped with two six-man recompression chambers and a three-man diving bell.
ii.It is fitted with a Dynamic Positioning System (DPS) to maintain precise position during Submarine Rescue/ Diving and Salvage operations.
iii.The ship was built by Mazgaon Shipbuilders in 1985 & has been in service with the Navy since 1989.
- It was re-commissioned in 1995(after the modifications).
iv.INS Nireekshak holds the record for the deepest dive (to a depth of 257 metres) carried out in India.
v.The Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral R Harikumar awarded the ship an ‘on the spot’ Unit Citation, a first in the Indian Navy.
ICG Pollution-Control Vessel ‘Samudra Prahari’ Carries Out Pollution Response Table-Top Exercise in Bangkok
Indian Coast Guard (ICG) Pollution-Control Vessel(PCV) ‘Samudra Prahari’ carried out a Pollution Response Table-Top exercise and demonstration at Khlong Toei Port in Bangkok, Thailand.
- The exercise is part of events held during the four day visit(17-20th September 2023) of the vessel to Bangkok.
- The exercise devised and tested Thailand’s Maritime Pollution Response contingency plan in collaboration with the ICG.
- The exercise fostered knowledge sharing and an interactive environment among the services, to cooperate during real-life oil pollution scenarios.
The beach cleaning activity was carried out as a part of the Puneet Sagar Abhiyan.
- It a nationwide flagship campaign of National Cadet Corps (NCC) to clean sea shores of plastic & other waste material, while raising awareness about the importance of cleanliness.
About Samudra Prahari:
i.The Indian Coast Guard Ship Samudra Prahari has embarked on an overseas deployment to Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries from 11th September 2023 to 14th October, 2023.
ii.The Samudra-class Pollution Control Vessel is a class of three vessels built by the ABG Shipyard Limited in Gujarat for ICG.
- The ship was commissioned in 2010.
iii.The vessel is outfitted with advanced pollution control gear, including containment tools like Hi-Sprint Booms and river booms to contain oil spills recovery devices.
iv.The ship is also equipped with a Chetak Helicopter in Pollution Response configuration.
India Global Forum and World Governments Summit Launch Emerging Economies ProgramOn September 20, 2023, London, United Kingdom (UK)-based India Global Forum (IGF) and World Governments Summit (WGS) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop an Emerging Economies Programme.
- This partnership will also allow the IGF to join WGS’s knowledge partners around the Globe.
- It will also foster international cooperation and sharing best practices.
It was signed by the Manoj Ladwa, Founder and Chairman of IGF and Mohamed al Sharhan, Managing Director(MD) of WGS, in the presence of Omar Sultan Al Olama, United Arab Emirates (UAE)’s Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence(AI) and Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, Vice-Chair of the WGS Organization.
About Emerging Economies Programme:
i.High-level discussions: The initiative will facilitate discussions on sustainable economic growth, geo-economic perspectives, and innovative solutions, involving government officials, business leaders, economists, and experts.
ii.Global South development: It aims to promote sustainable economic growth and development in the Global South.
- Research will be conducted on emerging trends, challenges, and opportunities in the Global South, progressively enhancing regional data for future governments.
iii.The initiative seeks to integrate global efforts, keeping pace with new trends and enabling effective responses to evolving challenges.
About World Governments Summit (WGS) Organization:
It is a global, neutral, non-profit organization dedicated to shaping the future of governments.
Chairman– Mohammad Abdullah Al Gergawi
Headquarters– Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Meta Launches UPI Payments For WhatsApp Business Messaging in India
Meta(formerly known as Facebook) Chief Executive Officer(CEO) Mark Zuckerberg announced the launch of Unified Payment Interface (UPI) payments for WhatsApp Business in India. This allows customers to pay businesses directly on the Whatsapp Chat application using their preferred UPI option.
- The announcement was virtually in the Meta Conversations event focusing on WhatsApp Business, held at the Jio World Convention Centre in Mumbai, Maharashtra.
- The accepted payment methods include Pay on WhatsApp, credit/debit cards, netbanking, Google Pay, PhonePe, Paytm and more UPI options.
- The initial payment partners are RazorPay and PayU.
WhatsApp’s payments solution was released in Singapore(May 2023) and Brazil(April 2023).
SJVN & PFC Signed MoU for RE & Thermal Projects Worth Rs 1.18 Lakh Crores
SJVN Ltd (formerly known as Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam Limited), have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Power Finance Corporation Ltd (PFC), India’s leading Non-Banking Financial Corporation (NBFC), to finance renewable and thermal energy Projects worth Rs. 1,18,826 crore.
- The project includes renewable energy(RE) ventures (Solar, Hydro and Pumped Storage) with a total capacity of around 12178 Megawatt(MW) along with 660 MW Thermal generation project.
- PFC will fund around 67-76% of the project tentatively. The proposed fun in the form of term loan will range from Rs 80000 crore to Rs 90000 crore. The funds may be further increased to accommodate the specific requirements of the RE projects as per project requirements.
- The MoU was signed by Manoj Sharma, Director (Commercial), PFC, and Akhileshwar Singh, Director (Finance), SJVN.
i.SJVN Ltd is a Mini Ratna Schedule A Central Public Sector Enterprise (CPSE) under the Ministry of Power. It is involved in hydroelectric power generation and transmissionin.
- SJVN, established in 1988 is a joint venture (JV) between the Government of India (GOI) and Government of Himachal Pradesh.
ii.PFC Ltd is a Maharatna CPSE incorporated on July 16th, 1986, under the Ministry of Power.
NMC India Gets World Federation for Medical Education Recognition Status for 10 YearsThe National Medical Commission (NMC) of India has been awarded the Recognition Status by the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) for a period of 10 years with immediate effect.
- As part of this recognition, all the 706 existing medical colleges in India will become WFME accredited and the new medical colleges, set up in the coming 10 years will automatically become WFME accredited.
Note: The WFME programme of Recognition of Accrediting Agencies was established following the 2005.
Significance of WFME Recognition Status:
This will enhance the quality and standards of medical education in India and align Indian medical education with global best practices and benchmarks.
This status will boost the international standing and reputation of Indian medical schools and healthcare professionals.
This will facilitate academic collaborations, and exchanges, and encourage continuous improvements and innovations in medical education.
This recognition allows Indian medical graduates to pursue postgraduate (PG) training and practice medicine in countries that require WFME accreditation including the United States of America (USA), Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
This will make India as an attractive destination for international students due to its globally recognized standards.
With NMC being WFME accredited all Indian students become eligible to apply for the Education Commission on Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) and United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE).
WFME Recognition Programme:
i.The WFME Recognition Programme follows the same principles as a medical school accreditation system: evaluation of documentation, policies and procedures; a site visit; and a decision taken by an independent committee with reference to pre-defined criteria.
ii.This aims to raise the standards of medical education worldwide, through ensuring that national and regional accrediting agencies are acting in an appropriate, robust and transparent way.
About Education Commission on Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG):
i.Established in 1956, ECFMG is a world leader in promoting quality health care and the primary body responsible for overseeing policies and regulations related to licensing International Medical Graduates (IMGs).
ii.ECFMG Certification is a requirement for IMGs to take the USMLE and obtain an unrestricted license to practice medicine in the USA.
About National Medical Commission (NMC):
Chairman– Dr. Suresh Chandra Sharma
Headquarters– New Delhi, Delhi
NMC has been constituted by an act of Parliament known as the National Medical Commission Act, 2019 which came into force on September 25, 2020.
About World Federation for Medical Education (WFME):
President– Professor Ricardo León-Bórquez
Registered office– Worcester, England (United Kingdom) and Ferney-Voltaire, France
WFME is the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) in official relation with the World Health Organization(WHO) representing medical education and medical schools worldwide.
WFME was founded in 1972 by the World Medical Association (WMA) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
CCI Approvals on September 20, 2023On September 20, 2023, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has approved the following proposals:
- CCI approves acquisition of additional unit holding in Highways Infrastructure Trust by 2452991 Ontario Limited and acquisition of equity stake in Highway ConcessionsOne Private Limited (HC One) by 2743298 Ontario Limited
- CCI approves certain shareholding in TVS Credit Services Limited by PI Opportunities along with certain Individuals
- CCI approves acquisition of approximately 24.16% of total equity shareholding in Quality Care India Limited by Centella Mauritius Holdings Limited
- CCI approves acquisition of 72.49% stake (approx.) in Quality Care India by BCP Asia II
About Competition Commission of India (CCI)
CCI is a statutory body within the Ministry of Corporate Affairs
It is responsible for enforcing the Competition Act, 2002
Chairperson – Ravneet Kaur
Headquarters – New Delhi, Delhi
Established – 2009
HDFC AMC Gets RBI Approval to Acquire Upto 9.5% Stake in KVB, DCB BankHDFC Asset Management Company Limited(HDFC AMC) received approval from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to acquire additional holdings of up to 9.5% of the paid-up share capital or voting rights of Karur Vysya Bank Limited(KVB) and DCB Bank Limited.
- The approval has been granted with reference to the application made by HDFC AMC to RBI.
- The holding of HDFC AMC in both the banks should not exceed (individually) 9.5 % of the paid-up share capital or voting rights of the Bank at all times.
Conditions in acquisition of KVB:
RBI instructed HDFC AMC not to reduce the shareholding below 5% without prior approval from RBI.
- If the aggregate holding falls below 5%, prior approval of RBI will be required to increase it to 5% or more of the paid-up share capital or voting rights of the Bank.
Conditions in acquisition of DCB Bank:
The RBI has given HDFC AMC one year time to buy the shares of DCB Bank.
- If HDFC AMC does not buy the shares within one year, the RBI’s approval will be cancelled.
The approval granted by RBI is subject to compliance with
- Relevant provisions of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949
- RBI’s master direction and guidelines on the acquisition and holding of shares or voting rights in banking companies dated January 16, 2023
- Provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999
- Regulations issued by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI)
About Karur Vysya Bank Limited:
Managing Director(MD) & Chief Executive Officer(CEO) – B. Ramesh Babu
Headquarters – Karur, Tamil Nadu
Established in – 1916
Tagline – Smart Way to Bank
About DCB Bank Limited:
Managing Director(MD) & Chief Executive Officer(CEO) – Murali M. Natrajan
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Established in – 1930
Tagline – We Value You
About HDFC Asset Management Company(AMC) Limited :
HDFC AMC was established in 2000 and firm registered with Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
Joint Venture Formation: In 2001, a strategic joint venture was established between HDFC Limited and abrdn Investment Management Limited (formerly Standard Life Investments Limited).
Managing Director(MD) & Chief Executive Officer(CEO) – Navneet Munot
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Agri Secretary Manoj Ahuja Launches Mobile App & Web Portal for GCES to Revolutionize Farming PracticesOn September 21, 2023, Manoj Ahuja, Secretary, Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (DA&FW) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoAFW) launched the mobile application and the web portal for General Crop Estimation Survey (GCES) to transform agricultural practices across India.
- This development has been made to enhance the reach, scope, and outcome of government actions in the course of development.
- The piloting of the app and portal is planned in 12 States and will be rollout by 3rd week of October 2023.
- All states are urged to adopt GCES portal and application to ensure creditability.
The portal and the mobile application of GCES has been developed by the DA&FW.
i.With this launch, GCES will become automatic as field data will be collected using GPS (Global Positioning System) enabled mobile application and will be stored in the server which ensures on time reporting of crop statistics.
- Till date data collection, compilation and yield estimation is fully manual process which cause delay in reporting by states.
ii.GPS-enabled devices offer precise latitude and longitude coordinates, ensuring data integrity and eliminating manipulation in location-based data collection
iii.The portal and app store detailed yield data by village, including crop experiment information and harvest weights.
- Agencies involved in conducting Crop Cutting Experiments (CCEs) in different states are Revenue Department, Agriculture Department and Directorate of Economics &Statistics.
iv.The app’s geo-referencing feature ensures data accuracy and transparency by mapping plot boundaries and uploading photos.
Hindustani Classical Vocalist Malini Rajurkar Passed Away
Malini Rajurkar, a noted Hindustani classical vocalist and one of the foremost exponents of Gwalior Gharana passed away at the age of 82 in Hyderabad, Telangana. She was born in 1941 in Ajmer, Rajasthan.
- She has received several awards, including the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi award in 2001 for her contribution to Hindustani vocal music.
- She has performed in major music festivals in India, including Gunidas Sammelan (Mumbai), Tansen Samaroh (Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh), Sawai Gandharva Festival (Pune, Maharashtra), and Shankar Lal Festival (Delhi).
- Her collaboration with Pune-based Alurkar Music House resulted in numerous noted albums like “Birj Yuvati Sang Racho Rang Raas” in Raga ‘Maru Bihag’ that describes the traditional “Raas Leela”.
- In the 1990s, she immortalised the traditional slow-tempo composition “Peer Na Jaani”, in Raga ‘Malkauns’.
ECI releases Comic Books to Create Awareness About Elections Among Children
The Election Commission of India (ECI) under Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation(SVEEP) program released a comic book ‘Chacha Chaudhary aur Chunavi Dangal’ to spread awareness about elections, voting and the electoral process to children. The comic features 10 shot stories on electoral aspects.
- The comics book is a joint initiative of ECI & Pran Comics.
- The book uses the comic characters such as Chacha Chaudhary, Sabu, Raaka, Dhamaka Singh and Billoo.
- ECI will distribute 30,000 copies for free among children.The copies of the comic books will also be available digitally.
SVEEP is a flagship program of the ECI for voter education, spreading voter awareness, and promoting voter literacy.
- Its primary goal is to build a truly participative democracy in India by encouraging all eligible citizens to vote and make an informed decision during the elections.
World Rhino Day 2023- September 22 World Rhino Day is annually observed across the globe on 22 September to raise awareness about the terrible situation of Rhinoceros or Rhino (Rhinoceros unicornis) and emphasise the steps to conserve its population.
- The day is dedicated to celebrating all 5 species of Rhinos namely white and black rhinos in Africa, and the greater one-horned, Javan, and Sumatran rhino species in Asia.
i.In 2010, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) – South Africa announced World Rhino Day, a national crisis to create awareness about the importance of saving these animals.
ii.Since 2011, World Rhino Day has been celebrated internationally on September 22nd every year.
iii.The observance was initiated by two dedicated conservationists namely Lisa Jane Campbell from the Chishakwe Ranch in Zimbabwe and Rhishja Cota-Larson from Saving Rhinos in the United States of America (USA).
World Rose Day for Cancer Patients 2023 – September 22 World Rose Day, also known as the Day for Welfare of Cancer Patients is annually observed across the globe on 22 September and is dedicated to cancer patients all across the globe and also encourages and acknowledges cancer survivors all over the world.
- The day aims to bring happiness and hope into the lives of such patients and reminds them that they can emerge victorious in their battle against cancer through determination and positivity.
Note: Cancer refers to any one of a large number of diseases characterized by the development of abnormal cells that divide uncontrollably and have the ability to infiltrate and destroy normal body tissue.
i.The origin of World Rose Day is credited to a 12-year-old Canadian girl named Melinda Rose, who was diagnosed with a rare form of blood cancer (Askin’s Tumor) in 1994.
ii.The day is reportedly observed in memory of Melinda Rose, who passed away from the disease in 1996.
World Car-Free Day – September 22World Car-Free Day is annually observed the cities across the globe on 22nd September to encourage motorists to give up their cars for a day. The day also highlights the benefits of being car-free such as reduced air pollution and the promotion of walking and cycling in a safer environment.
History of World Car Free Day
i.The idea for World Car Free Day came after the petroleum crisis of 1973, when people started to look for ways to reduce their dependence on cars.
ii.The first national car-free day campaign was launched in Britain in 1997.
- In 2000, World Car Free Day went global with programs launched by Carbusters (now World Carfree Network) and the Earth Day Network.
iii.An international carfree day was organised in Europe in 1999, which was the pilot project for the European Union’s “In Town Without My Car” campaign. This campaign continues as European Mobility Week.
About West Bengal:
Chief Minister – Mamata Banerjee
Governor – C. V. Ananda Bose
Wildlife Sanctuary – Bethuadahari Wildlife Sanctuary, Ballavpur Wildlife Sanctuary
Tiger Reserve – Buxa Tiger Reserve, Sundarban Tiger Reserve