Current Affairs- 11 October 2023

MoCA Unveils Digital System for Automatic Issuance of Exporter Status Certificates On October 9, 2023, Union Minister Piyush GoyalMinistry of Commerce & Industry (MoCI), launched a new initiative for issuing system-based automatic ‘Status Holder’ certificates under the Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) 2023.

  • The initiative was launched during the meeting with Export Promotion Councils.

Note: At present, there are around 14 Export Promotion Councils under the administrative control of the Department of Commerce.
What is in the system?
i.The new system eliminates the need for exporters to apply for a Status Certificate from the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT).
ii.Export recognition is automated through the IT (Information Technology) system using existing merchandise export data and risk parameters from Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics (DGCIS).

  • This streamlines the process, reduces compliance burden, and promotes ease of doing business.
  • Eligible exporters can modify their status online later, ensuring a simplified process without the need for manual applications or certifications.

Current Scenario:
At present, the exporter is required to file an online application along with an export certificate from a Chartered Accountant (CA) for grant of Status. The DGFT Regional Offices, issue the certificate in 3 days.
What is Status Holder certification program?
It enhances Indian exporters’ credibility in the international markets and offers benefits such as simplified procedures under FTP 2023, priority custom clearances, exemption from mandatory document negotiation through banks, and no need for filing Bank Guarantee for FTP schemes.
Key Points:
i.The new system will recognize 20,000 exporters as Status Holders under FTP 2023, a significant increase from the previous 12,518.
ii.This is also aligned with the goal of achieving a USD 2 trillion export target by 2030.

BIAL sets up South Asia’s 1st Aircraft Recovery Training School in BLR Airport
Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) has established South Asia’s first Aircraft Recovery Training School (ARTS) on the premises of Kempegowda International Airport Bengaluru (KIAB/BLR Airport) in Bengaluru, Karnataka.

  • BIAL formed a strategic partnership with KUNZ GmbH Aircraft Equipment, Germany.
  • BIAL is the first airport in India to acquire Code F compatible aircraft recovery equipment and assemble a proficient team of recovery managers.

About Aircraft Recovery Training School (ARTS):
i.ARTS provides aircraft recovery hands-on training, equipped with state-of-the-art Disabled Aircraft Recovery Equipment (DARE).
ii.The goal of the program is to elevate operational efficiency and prioritize passenger safety.

  • The training will equip aviation professionals with the necessary skills and knowledge needed to respond the challenging situations.

Mumbai Airport is 1st in Asia to Commission ‘Disabled Aircraft Recovery Kit’
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) of Mumbai, Maharashtra, has become the first airport in Asia to commission a “Disabled Aircraft Recovery Kit” (DARK), to help stranded aircraft.

  • DARK can quickly and efficiently recover large commercial and transport aircraft that have become disabled due to runway excursions or other incidents.
  • DARK uses high-pressure lifting bags that are more durable and require fewer people to operate than conventional low-pressure systems.
  • It can recover aircraft up to 390 tonnes in weight, including the world’s largest aircraft, the Boeing 777-300ER.
  • The DARK kit is compact and portable, making it easy to transport to crash sites quickly. This is especially important at CSMIA, which has a single cross-over runway operation.

A runway excursion is when an aircraft unintentionally leaves the runway during takeoff or landing.

Star Health Insurance introduces Surrogacy Cover and Oocyte Donor Cover
On October 9, 2023, Star Health and Allied Insurance introduced surrogacy cover and oocyte donor cover to its women-centric policy namely Star Women Care Insurance Policy at no extra charge for policyholders.

  • This inclusion will address the demand in assisted reproduction treatment, and extending health insurance coverage to surrogate mothers and oocyte donors.
  • The Surrogate Mother & Oocyte Donor Cover is applicable for adults 25 to 35 years. The sum insured under this is available up to Rs. 1 Crore.

For the cover to be valid, the intending couple, surrogate mother, and treating hospital should comply with the Surrogacy Act and Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) Act regulations. Additionally, the Surrogacy and Oocyte donation must be undertaken at approved centres registered with the National ART and Surrogacy Registry.
Features of Surrogacy Cover and Oocyte Donor Cover:
Surrogacy Cover:
i.Offers inpatient hospitalisation coverage for post-partum delivery complications for 36 months.
ii.Begins from the date of treatment or procedure initiation.
iii.Compensation for Miscarriage due to Accident as per policy terms.
Oocyte Donor Coverage: Covers inpatient hospitalisation costs for assisted reproductive treatment complications for 12 months.
Newborn Cover:
i.Newborn receives health cover of 25% of sum insured from Day 1.
ii.Increases to 100% from the subsequent year onward.
Star Mother Cover: Covers hospital room rent for insured mothers if child is <12 years old and hospitalized in ICU.
Additional benefits: Additional benefits include AYUSH Treatment, Rehabilitation and pain management, Ante-Natal Care (Pregnancy Care), In Utero Fetal Surgery/Repair, Bariatric Surgery, Optional Cover (Lump sum on diagnosis of Cancer), Coverage for modern treatments, Medical and Tele-Health consultations.
About Star Health and Allied Insurance:
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer– Anand Roy
Headquarters– Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Establishment– 2006

IIFCL Sanctions Loans Worth Rs 8,800 crore to Boost Civil Aviation InfrastructureIndia Infrastructure Finance Company Limited (IIFCL) has sanctioned loans worth Rs 8,800 crore for airports and civil aviation infrastructure development in India.

  • The IIFCL has already sanctioned loans of around Rs 4,000 crore.

IIFCL is a government owned financial institution that caters to the long-term financing needs of India’s infrastructure sector. This plays a major role in financing airport projects in India.
i.IIFCL is one of India’s major airport financiers and has supported airports with a total project outlay of about Rs 74,000 crore.
ii.IIFCL along with the Government of India will continue to support the development of world-class airport infrastructure in India under the Public-Private-Partnership(PPP) model.

  • It will also explore opportunities to fund greenfield airport projects and Maintenance, Repairs and Overhaul (MRO) facilities.

i.The launch of the Ude Desh ka Aam Nagarik’ (UDAN) scheme (in 2017) has boosted the development of the airport sector.
ii.As a result the number of airports has almost doubled from 74 in 2014 to 148 in 2023, giving a boost to regional connectivity.
Growing Demand:
i.The passenger handling capacity is expected to increase from the current 350 million per annum to 500 million per annum by the end of the Financial Year2023-24 and 2 billion by 2047.
ii.The growth was driven by the rising trend of air travel among middle-income households, complemented by infrastructure development at leading airports and supportive government policies.
iii.The airport infrastructure capacity should be increased to meet such a huge growing demand.
Additional Info:
To expand air infrastructure, the National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP) has envisaged a Capital expenditure (capex) of Rs 91,000 crore for the civil aviation sector in the five years till FY25.
About India Infrastructure Finance Company Limited (IIFCL):
Managing Director(MD) – Padmanabhan Raja Jaishankar
Headquarters – New Delhi, Delhi
Established in – 2006

Nobel Prize in Economics 2023: Professor Claudia Goldin 3rd Woman to Won the AwardProfessor Claudia Goldin of Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, the United States of America (USA) won the 2023 Nobel Economics Prize, formally known as the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, for her research contributions to the understanding of women’s roles and outcomes in the labour market.

  • The Prize in Economic Sciences is awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, Sweden, it shares the same principles as the Nobel Prizes, which have been awarded since 1901.
  • Claudia Goldin is the 55th recipient of the Economic Science Prize since its inception in 1969.
  • She is the 3rd woman to receive the award after Elinor Ostrom (USA) in 2009 and Esther Duflo (French-American) in 2019. She is also the first woman to win the prize solo.


  • In 2009, Elinor Ostrom became the 1st woman to win the Economics prize. She shared the award with Oliver E Williamson. Esther Duflo shared the 2019 award with her husband Abhijit Banerjee, and Michael Kremer.

Nandini Azad Re-elected to Board of International Raiffeisen Union
Nandini Azad, President of the Indian Co-operative Network for Women (ICNW) and the Working Women’s Forum (WWF) (India), has been re-elected as a member of the International Raiffeisen Union (IRUBoard for the 2nd term.

  • In 2018, she was elected to the IRU Board becoming the first Indian and first woman to be appointed to the post.
  • At Present, she is also serving as the Chairperson of the International Cooperative Alliance(ICA) – Asia Pacific(AP) Committee on Women.

Other Noted appointment:
i.Guy Hoffmann from Banque Raiffeisen Luxembourg has been elected as the new IRU President, succeeding Franky Depickere from Cera.
ii.National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI) President Dileepbhai Sanghani has been re-elected unopposed as the director on the board of IRU.

  • ICNW, established in 1981, is the 1st women’s cooperative in South India for, by, and of poor women. It is active in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh.
  • IRU, founded in 1968, is a prestigious worldwide association of national cooperative organisations. IRU headquartered in Bonn, Germany has 50 members in 33 countries.

Epithemis wayanadensis: New Dragonfly Species Found in WayanadResearchers have discovered a new species of colourful dragonfly in Wayanad, Kerala. The new species, also known as “Red-rumped Hawklet”, is given the scientific nomenclature “Epithemis wayanadensis”. It is named after its habitat “the Wayanad plateau”, situated among the biodiverse Western Ghats.

  • The discovery of the new species is published in the peer-reviewed, open-access journal, Journal of Asia-Pacific Biodiversity, by the Elsevier Group.

About Epithemis wayanadensis:
i.The species Epithemis wayanadensis (E. wayanadensis) belongs to the Genus Epithemis, a genus of insects, and family Libellulidae. It is endemic to the Western Ghats, India.
ii.E. wayanadensis is a sister taxon of Ruby-tailed Hawklet (Epithemis Mariae) a very similar species found in small colonies closely associated with forested marshes in south India.

i.wayanadensis has been identified in the Western Ghats, specifically in the lush landscape of Wayanad and parts of the Nilgiri Coorg region (Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka).

  • It primarily inhabits marshes and pools at the base of forested hills.

i.E. wayanadensis species is a much darker insect with more restricted red colouration like E. Mariae.
ii.It differs in having darker pigmentation, a restricted red colouration on the abdomen, and lacking the yellow antehumeral stripes.
iii.It has a weak flight and never flew higher than 3 metres above the ground.
iv.This dragonfly species takes to the skies (makes a brief appearance) exclusively during the month of October and by early November, these dragonflies vanish from sight.
Research Team:
The discovery was a collaborative effort led by Vivek Chandran and Subin K. Jose, researchers of the Environmental Science department at Christ College, Irinjalakuda, Kerala; David Raju, a seasoned naturalist and wildlife photographer; and Zeeshan Mirza, a researcher from the Max Planck Institute for Biology in Germany.
Discovery of the Species:
i.The team was conducting research on the odonates (dragonflies and damselflies) in Kerala and collected specimens of a population that resembles E. Mariae.
ii.Further examination revealed distinct differences in morphology, behaviour, and genetic makeup, leading to the conclusion that E. wayanadensis was a previously undiscovered species.
DNA analysis:
i.To validate their remarkable discovery, the team conducted DNA analysis, a pivotal method for confirming the existence of a new species.

  • Typically, a mere 2% genetic difference indicates the presence of a new species.
  • However, the researchers found a 12% genetic difference in their analysis.

ii.This instance marks the first time, an Indian dragonfly species has been officially documented with genetic evidence supporting its distinct morphological features.
iii.For the first time in the history of Indian Odonatology, the researchers have used molecular techniques to reaffirm the identity of a species new to science.

India Finishes Fourth in the Hangzhou Asian Games 2022 with 107 MedalsIndia finished Fourth in the medal tally of the Hangzhou Asian Games 2022 with 107 medals (28 gold, 38 silver and 41 bronze).

  • Compound archers Jyothi Surekha Vennam and Ojas Deotale won the most gold medals (three each) for India in the Hangzhou Asian Games 2022.
  • The Indian men’s cricket team led by Ruturaj Gaikwad was awarded a gold medal after the final was called off due to rain.
  • Avinash Sable was the first Indian to win the gold medal in the 3000m men’s steeplechase event in any Asian Games.

Medal Tally:

World Dyslexia Day 2023 – October 08World Dyslexia Day also known as “World Dyslexia Awareness Day” is annually observed across the globe on October 8 to raise awareness about dyslexia.

  • The day aims to promote inclusivity, access to education, and the implementation of effective strategies to support individuals with dyslexia in their learning journeys.
  • World Dyslexia Day was first observed on October 8, 2013. The day was initiated by the European Dyslexia Association (EDA).

Dyslexia week & month:
i.The Dyslexia awareness week is observed annually on the first full week of October, always starting on the first Monday.

  • In 2023, it is observed from 2nd to 8th October. 

ii.Dyslexia Awareness Month is celebrated worldwide each October.
The theme for World Dyslexia Awareness Day 2023 is “Uniquely You”.

  • The theme aims to celebrate the diversity of people within the dyslexic community.

i.Dyslexia is a language processing disorder; It is  neurological condition that affects how the brain processes language.
ii.Ten percent of the population are believed to be dyslexic.
iii.Dyslexic people face difficulty in processing and remembering information they see and hear, which impacts on their learning.

  • People with dyslexia may have difficulty with reading, writing, vocabulary, and tasks that require hand-eye coordination.

Observance in India:
The Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD)  under Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment(MoSJE) is observing World Dyslexia Day in India by conducting various events across the country.

National Postal Week 2023 – October 9 to 13 2023National Postal Week is annually observed across India from October 09 to 13 to generate a broad awareness about the role of India Post and its activities among the public and media at a national level.

  • The observance of National Postal Week is led by the Department of Posts (DOP).

The National Postal Week 2023 is observed from 9th to 13th October 2023 under the theme “Together for trust: Collaborating for a safe and connected future”.

  • This is the theme of World Post Day 2023.
  • National Postal Week started with World Post Day, observed across the globe on 9 October to mark the anniversary of the establishment of Universal Postal Union’s (UPU) in 1874.


  • DoP trading as India Post, is a government-operated postal system in India, which is a part of the Ministry of Communications of the Government of India (GoI).
  • India possesses the largest postal network in the world.

World Day Against the Death Penalty 2023 – October 10World Day Against the Death Penalty is annually observed across the globe on October 10 to raise awareness about the inhumane and cruel practice of capital punishment and the need to get rid of the death penalty from the justice systems.

  • 10th October 2023 marks the observance of the 21st World Day Against the Death Penalty. 

i.World Day against the Death Penalty 2023 will reflect on the relationship between the use of the death penalty and torture or other cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment or punishment.
ii.Top 5 countries that executed the capital punishment the most in the world in 2022 are, (in order): China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and USA.
About Amnesty International:
Secretary-General – Agnès Callamard
Headquarters – London, United Kingdom(UK)
Established in – 1961

World Mental Health Day 2023- October 10 World Mental Health Day (WMHD) is annually observed across the globe on 10 October to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world and to mobilize efforts in support of mental health.

  • WMHD is a global health campaign that aims to encourage people around the world to support the cause and establish a healthy environment in all aspects of life to support mental health.

WMHD is supported by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH), and its member organisations.
Symbol: The green ribbon is the international symbol of mental health awareness.
2023 Global Campaign:
The 2023 Global Campaign aims to recognise the 75th Anniversary of WFMH (founded in 1948) and WMHD 2023.
According to WFMH, the theme of the World Mental Health Day Global Campaign 2023 is “Mental health is a universal human right.”

  • The theme focuses on improving knowledge, raising awareness, and driving actions that promote and protect everyone’s mental health as a universal human right.

Note: Since 2013, WHO has organized a global campaign for WMHD.
i.World Mental Health Day was started as an annual activity of the World Federation for Mental Health(WFMH) by the then Deputy Secretary General Richard Hunter.
ii.WMHD was observed for the first time on 10 October 1992.
iii.In 1994, WMHD adopted its first theme, “Improving the Quality of Mental Health Services throughout the World.”

  • The then Secretary-General Eugene Brody introduced the concept of an annual theme for WMHD.

About World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH):
Secretary General/CEO– Gabriel Ivbijaro
President– Dr Nasser Loza (Egypt)
President-Elect– Tsuyoshi Akiyama (Tokyo, Japan)
Headquarters– Texas, United States of America (USA)
Established in-1948

CM Pushkar Dhami Launches Rozgar Prayag Portal at U’khand Youth Mahotsav in Dehradun On October 9, 2023, Pushkar Singh Dhami, Chief Minister (CM) of Uttarakhand, launched the government-developed Rojgar Prayag Portal during the Uttarakhand Youth Mahotsav 2023 program organized at Parade Ground in Dehradun, Uttarakhand.

  • The portal for youths aims to provide employment opportunities in the Uttarakhand on a single portal.
  • The event was organized by the Uttarakhand Skill development Society and Government of Uttarakhand on the theme ‘Uttarakhand Towards Entrepreneurship and Employment’.
  • During the event, CM Pushkar Singh Dhami launched the Yuva Uttarakhand App to make the schemes run by various departments available at one place.

About Uttarakhand:
Chief Minister– Pushkar Singh Dhami
Governor– Gurmit Singh
Capital– Dehradun
Festivals– Magh Mela, Nanda Raj Jat

MP CM Unveils 108 ft Statue of Adi Shankaracharya at Omkareshwar
Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chief Minister(CM) of Madhya Pradesh(MP) unveiled a 108-foot-tall statue of 8th-century Vedic scholar and teacher Adi Guru Shankaracharya, on the Mandhata hillock in Omkareshwar, Khargone district of MP.

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