Cabinet Approvals on January 4, 2023On January 4, 2023, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister(PM) Narendra Modi approved the following proposals,
CCEA Approves Central Sector BIND Scheme with an Outlay of Rs. 2,539.61 Crore Up to 2025-26
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) proposal for the Central Sector Scheme “Broadcasting Infrastructure and Network Development” (BIND) at a cost of Rs. 2,539.61 crores for the infrastructure development of Prasar Bharati (Akashvani), i.e., All India Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan (DD).
Cabinet approves National Green Hydrogen Mission worth Rs. 19,744 crore
The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi, has approved the Rs. 19,744 crore National Green Hydrogen Mission, with the objective of making India a major exporter in the sector and a global hub for the production, use, and export of green hydrogen and its derivatives.
Cabinet Approves Naming of Greenfield International Airport Mopa, Goa as ‘Manohar International Airport – Mopa, Goa’
The Union Cabinet, chaired by PM Narendra Modi, has accorded ex-post facto approval for the naming of Greenfield International Airport in Mopa, Goa, as “Manohar International Airport – Mopa, Goa.”
About SJVN Limited (formerly known as Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam Ltd):
Chairman & Managing Director (CMD) – Nand Lal Sharma
Headquarters – Shimla, Himachal Pradesh
President assents CrPC (Gujarat Amendment) Bill, 2021 that makes violation of Sec 144 Order an OffenceThe President of India Droupadi Murmu has given her assent to the Code of Criminal Procedure (Gujarat Amendment) Bill, 2021 which empowers the administration to register criminal cases against those who are staging protests in violation of Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC).
What is Section 144 of CrPC?
Enacted in 1973, Section 144 empowers the magistrate of any state or union territory in India to prohibit the assembly of four or more people so that law and order can be protected in an area.
The CrPC (Gujarat Amendment) Bill, 2021 amended Section 195 (1) (a) (ii) which prohibits the jurisdictional courts from taking cognisance of the offences except on the complaint in writing of the public servant concerned.
- This means public servant issuing such orders is mandated to become complainant against the violators due to which officials hesitate to enforce the law.
- The State Assembly of Gujarat passed the bill March 2022.
i.According to the bill, the breach of the magisterial order will be regarded as a cognisable offence under Indian Penal Code (IPC) Section 188 (disobedience to an order duly promulgated by a public servant), and a public authority can arrest an accused without a warrant.
- The maximum punishment for violators under the Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code is 6 months jail.
ii.Before this amendment, the state (police) can only detain violators for a limited period of time
iii.Once this bill becomes law, the Gujarat government, police commissioners and district magistrates will be empowered to issue prohibitory orders, restricting any person from a certain act or for prevention of disturbance of public tranquillity or a riot or an affray to maintain public order on various occasions.
About Section 144 of CrPC:
i.As per the law, the Section 144 can be directed against a particular individual or persons residing in a particular place or area or to the general public.
ii.The order passed under Section 144 can remain in force only for two months from initiation of the order. It can be extended but not more than 6 months and have to reviewed thereafter.
iii.Violation of Section 144 is liable for a maximum of 3 years imprisonment.
World’s First Palm-Leaf Manuscript Museum opens in KeralaKerala Chief Minister(CM) Pinarayi Vijayan inaugurated the Palm leaf Manuscript Museum with modern audio-visual technology at the renovated Central Archives, Fort area in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.
- The Museum, promoted as “World’s First Palm-Leaf Manuscript Museum” was set up by the Archives Department in association with the Kerala Museum of History and Heritage at a cost of Rs 3 crore.
i. The museum is a repository of curious nuggets of administrative, socio-cultural and economic facets of the Travancore kingdom which lasted for 650 years till the end of the 19th century.
ii. It had been the Central Vernacular Records Office since 1887 before becoming a museum.
i. The museum is a useful resource for historical and cultural studies for both academic and non-academic researchers.
ii. The museum has 8 theme-based galleries in the museum representing segments like, “History of Writing,” “Land and People,” “Administration,” “War and Peace,” “Education and Health,” “Economy,” “Art and Culture,” and “Mathilakam Records.”
iii. The museum stores 187 manuscripts at Central Archives and the department’s regional officers in Ernakulam and Kozhikode. The manuscripts span 6 centuries From 1249 CE to 1896.
- It will be housed in the 6,000-sq ft museum which was arranged by the Kerala government’s nodal agency for museums Keralam–Museum of History and Heritage.
iv. The Museum houses manuscripts in ancient scripts such as Vattezhuthu, Kolezhuthu, Malayanma, and ancient Tamil and Malayalam.
v. The 1st phase’s archival material was selected after sorting through a stock of carelessly stored 1.5 crore palm-leaf records from all across Kerala.
President of India Droupadi Murmu’s Visit to Rajasthan from 3 to 4 January 2023Droupadi Murmu, President of India, inaugurated and laid foundation stone for various projects during her 2 day visit to Rajasthan from 3rd to 4th January 2023.
- She inaugurated Samvidhan Udyan at Raj Bhavan, Jaipur and met with the member of the Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups’ Communities of Rajasthan.
- She also virtually inaugurated the Transmission System for Solar Energy Zones in Rajasthan and laid the foundation stone for 1000 megawatt (MW) Bikaner Solar Power Project.
- She also participated in the launch of a National Campaign on ‘RISE-Rising India through Spiritual Empowerment’, organized by Brahma Kumaris at Mount Abu.
- She also inaugurated the 18th National Jamboree of the Bharat Scouts and Guides in Rajasthan.
Chief Minister(CM)– Ashok Gehlot
Governor– Kalraj Mishra
Wildlife sanctuary– Sitamata Wildlife Sanctuary; Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary
Tiger Reserve– Sariska Tiger Reserve; Mukundara Tiger Reserve
Narayan Rane Virtually Inaugurates India Made ITRS at MOPA Airport, Goa
Narayan Rane, Union Minister for Micro Small & Medium enterprises (MSME) inaugurated an India made Intelligent Tray Retrieval System (ITRS), manufactured by M/s SJK Innovations Private Limited, an MSME-Make in India Company, at MOPA (Goa) International airport, officially renamed as Manohar International Airport, Mopa, Goa. This “Made in India” ITRS system is also “Patented in India”.
The ITRS is an Artificial Intelligence (AI) based fully automatic machine with advanced screening technology that helps in providing enhanced passenger security.
- The machine is equipped with image analysis software with advanced tools for effortless screening and also contains a dedicated module for high threat baggage that needs immediate attention at the airport.
Highlights of EAM Dr. S. Jaishankar’s Visit to the Republic of Cyprus and Austria—December 29, 2022 –January 3, 2023Dr. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, India’s External Affairs Minister (EAM), visited the Republic of Cyprus from December 29 – 31, 2022 and the Republic of Austria from December 31, 2022 -January 3, 2023.
- The year 2022 commemorated the 60th anniversary of India-Cyprus diplomatic ties, which were established on February 10, 1962.
i.During his visit to Cyprus, EAM witnessed the signing of agreements in a number of fields, including Defence and Military Cooperation between India & Cyprus.
ii.It was his first visit to Austria as India’s EAM, and the first such visit from India in 27 years. The visit commemorated the 75 years of India’s diplomatic ties with Austria, which were established in 1949.
iii.During EAM Dr. S. Jaishankar’s visit to Vienna, Austria, India and Austria signed a number of agreements, including ones pertaining to mobility and migration and the Working Holiday Programme.
About International Solar Alliance (ISA):
Director General– Ajay Mathur
Established – 2015
Headquarters– Gurugram, Haryana
Issues related to cards, Net Banking Top Complaint Areas at OBO: RBI Reporti.On January 4, 2023, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) released the Annual Report of the Ombudsman Schemes for the period April 01, 2021 – March 31, 2022. Its details are as follows:
ii.Issues related to ATM (Automated Teller Machine)/debit cards were the highest at 14.65% of the total received at the Office of Banking Ombudsman (OBO) during April 1 to November 11, 2021.
- These were followed by mobile/ electronic banking at 13.64%.
iii.Complaints relating to the digital modes of payment and transactions were the highest in number, constituting 42.12% of the total complaints received during the year.
iv.The volume of complaints received under the Ombudsman Schemes/Consumer Education and Protection Cells during 2021-22 increased by 9.39% at 4,18,184 as compared to FY21.
About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):
Governor– Shaktikanta Das
Deputy Governors– Mahesh Kumar Jain, Michael Debabrata Patra, M. Rajeshwar Rao, T. Rabi Sankar
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Establishment– 1st April 1935
Dhanlaxmi Bank launches Retail Internet Banking Services ‘DhanDelight‘ & Mobile Banking App ‘DhanSmart‘Dhanlaxmi Bank has launched its new retail internet banking ‘DhanDelight’, and retail mobile banking app ‘DhanSmart’ featuring latest information system security features to provide secure banking.
- The new services are built on omni channel platform with multiple features covering various banking requirements.
i.In DhanDelight, latest UI (User Interface) and UX (User Experience) enable customers to do the financial transactions more securely.
ii.The mobile app, DhanSmart, also offers dark theme to improve visual ergonomics, reduce eye strain and helps in conserving battery power.
iii.The applications come with value-added features such as biometric authentication for mobile users, dash board for internet users, user defined themes, soft token for transaction authentication, credit card reports, online subscription of various social security and other schemes, online financial transactions and payments etc.
About Dhanlaxmi Bank:
Managing Director & CEO– Shivan J K
Headquarters– Thrissur, Kerala
Tagline– Tann Mann Dhan
Incorporated in 1927
IndusInd Bank Partners with British & Qatar Airways to Introduce Multi-branded Credit CardOn 5th January 2023, IndusInd Bank partnered with British Airways Executive Club and Qatar Airways Privilege Club to introduce the first-of-its-kind unique multi-branded credit card, powered by Visa.
- This multi-branded credit card will be launched and made available to consumers in the first quarter of FY 2023-2024.
i.The credit card will be available in the Infinite variant of Visa and offers best-in-class rewards along with multiple benefits that will elevate international travel experience of customers.
ii.Through this card, the customers are allowed to choose their preferred airline loyalty programme and select their preferred travel destination to collect maximum Avios, the rewards currency for British Airways Executive Club and Qatar Airways Privilege Club.
- The card also offers various benefits suitable for the requirements of frequent travellers.
- The customers can choose their preferred airline loyalty and preferred travel destinations while applying for the credit card.
About IndusInd Bank:
Managing Director (MD) & Chief Executive Officer (CEO) – Sumant Kathpalia
Headquarters – Pune, Maharashtra
Establishment – 1994
RBI: Annapurna Finance Private Applies for Universal Bank License
On 4th January 2022, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has received an application from Bhubaneswar (Odisha) based Annapurna Finance Private Limited (AFPL), formerly known as Annapurna Microfinance Private Limited, under the Guidelines for ‘on tap’ Licensing of Universal Banks in the Private Sector issued on 1st August 2016.
- AFPL was the only entity to apply for a universal bank licence during the quarter ended December 31, 2022.
Note – Under these guidelines large industrial houses cannot apply for bank permits. Also, eligible promoters need to have at least 10 years of experience in the financial sector.
In May 2022, RBI rejected applications from UAE Exchange and Financial Services Ltd, The Repatriates Cooperative Finance and Development Bank Ltd (REPCO Bank), Chaitanya India Fin Credit Pvt Ltd and Pankaj Vaish and others for setting up Universal Banks.
GST Revenues grow 15% to Rs 1.49 lakh crore in December 2022
India’s Goods and Services Tax (GST) revenues increased 15% year-on-year to Rs 1.49 lakh crore (USD 18.07 billion) in December 2022, suggesting robust economic activity during the holiday season.
- The gross GST revenue collected during December 2022 is Rs 1,49,507 crore, of which CGST is Rs 26,711 crore, SGST is Rs 33,357 crore, IGST is Rs 78,434 crore (including Rs 40,263 crore collected on import of goods) and cess is Rs 11,005 crore (including Rs 850 crore collected on import of goods).
- In December 2022, for the 10th consecutive month, the GST revenues exceeded Rs 1.40 lakh crore. The GST collections were about Rs 1.46 lakh crore in November 2022.
ISRO, Microsoft join hands to Empower Space-Tech Startups in IndiaOn 5th January 2023, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Microsoft India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to support and promote the growth of space technology startups in India.
- The MoU aims to empower Indian space tech startups with technology tools and platforms, go-to-market support, and mentoring to help them scale and become enterprise ready.
- The government has opened up the space sector for private players. More than 100 active startups are based in India and work in the space-tech sector.
i. The partnership aims to strengthen ISRO’s vision of utilising the market potential of India’s most innovative and successful space tech businesses.
ii. Through this collaboration, the ISRO-identified space-tech firms will be added to the Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub platform, which supports startups at every stage of their development, from idea to unicorn.
- Through Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub, space-tech startup founders in India will have free access to the tech tools, and resources they need to build and run their businesses.
- This also includes technical support to build and scale on Azure, best-in-class developer and productivity tools including GitHub Enterprise, Visual Studio Enterprise, and Microsoft 365, and access to smart analytics with Power BI and Dynamics 365.
iii. In addition to providing technological access, Microsoft will coach space tech entrepreneurs in a variety of fields, including cloud technologies, product and design, funding, and sales and marketing.
- They will also have access to Microsoft Learn for tailored startup-centric training content and programs.
iv. Microsoft and ISRO will also jointly organize knowledge-sharing and thought leadership sessions for the startups with space industry experts.
About Microsoft India:
President- Anant Maheshwari
Headquarters- Hyderabad, Telangana
Assam Govt confers Assam State Civilian Award 2023; Dr Tapan Saikia receives ‘Assam Baibhav’The Assam government has announced the list of winners of the Assam State Civilian Award 2023 which honours notable people for their admirable service to society. A total of 21 personalities were chosen for the Assam State Civilian Awards 2023.
Renowned doctor Dr Tapan Saikia was honoured with the “Assam Baibhav” for his work in the healthcare (cancer treatment) and public service sectors, which included promoting early cancer detection in Assam and other northeastern regions.
- The Assam State Civilian Award has 3 categories: Assam Baibhav Award, Assam Saurav Award and Assam Gaurav Award.
- The 2023 awards includes, 1 Assam Baibhav; 5 Assam Saurav; and 15 Assam Gaurav.
List of Assam State Civilian Award 2023:
About the Assam Civilian Awards:
i. The Government of Assam will present the Assam Civilian Awards on the same patterns as the Bharat Ratna and Padma Awards, the highest Civilian Awards of the Government of India, in the interest of public service and to recognise exceptional service or performance of the highest order in any field of human endeavour.
- ‘Assam Baibhav’ carries a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh.
- ‘Assam Saurav’ carries a cash prize of Rs 4 lakh.
- ‘Assam Gaurav’carries a cash prize of Rs 3 Lakh.
ii. The awardees will also get Free Medical Treatment in Government hospitals and stay in paying cabins and other facilities.
Belinda Clark becomes 1st Woman Cricketer to get a Bronze Statue at SCG
On January 5, 2023, Belinda Clark, a former Australia captain, became the 1st female cricketer to get a Bronze statue unveiled at the Walk of Honour of the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in Sydney, Australia.
- On the morning of Day 2 of the 3rd men’s Test Match between Australia and South Africa, the sculpture was unveiled by the Honorable Dame Quentin Bryce and the Premier of New South Wales, the Hon. Dominic Perrottet MP.
- Belinda Clark is the 15th sportsperson and the 3rd woman to have a statue as part of the SCG sculpture project. The other two are sprinters Betty Cuthbert and Marlene Matthews.
Prasanna Kumar Motupalli appointed as Chairman & MD of NLC India Ltd
On 5th January 2023, Prasanna Kumar Motupalli appointed as Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of the state-run NLC India Ltd (NLCIL), a Navratna Public Sector Undertaking (PSU)under the Ministry of Coal.
- The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved the appointment of Prasanna Kumar Motupalli till the date of his superannuation which is June 30, 2026.
- Prior to this appointment, Prasanna Kumar Motupalli, Executive Director of NTPC Limited was working as the Managing Director of Gujarat State Electricity Corporation Limited (GSECL) on a deputation basis.
2023 Hyderabad E-Prix: Hyderabad to host India’s 1st ABB FIA Formula E World Championship RaceHyderabad, Telangana is set to host the 2023 Hyderabad E-Prix, India’s 1st ever ABB FIA (Federation Internationale de l’Automobile) Formula E World Championship race, all-electric motorsports, on 11th February 2023.
- The 2023 Hyderabad E-Prix is round 4 of the 17 races for the 9th Season of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.
- The 2022–23 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship marks the 9th Season Championship which will be organised between January and July 2023.
The race will be held at the new Hyderabad Street Circuit alongside Hussain Sagar Lake, Hyderabad, Telangana.
About Formula E World Championship:
- Formula E is a showcase for the world’s most advanced e-mobility technologies that drive towards a more sustainable future. The championship is the first Net Zero Sport since its inception.
- The first 3 races will be held in Mexico City (1st) and Riyadh (2nd & 3rd).
Note: The Gen3- the world’s fastest, lightest, most powerful and most efficient electric race car is coming to Hyderabad for the event.
i. Private firm Ace Nxt Gen is the official promoter of the Formula E Race in India in partnership with Formula E and the Telangana government.
- The partnership between Ace Nxt Gen Formula E and the Government of Telangana is 4-year long and the championship will take place in India until 2026.
ii. The Hyderabad Street Circuit, a 2.830 km (1.758 mi) street circuit, is designed by Driven International, the firm responsible for the recent changes to the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.
iii. This is India’s 1st Street Circuit Car Racing which opened on 19th November 2022.
iv. A total of 11 teams with 22 cars would be racing in the Hyderabad E-Prix in their brand-new Gen3 Formula E cars, including some of the major racing companies.
v. The new Gen3 Formula E cars are capable of a top speed of 322 kmph (Kilometer per hour).
vi. McLaren and Maserati will be joining the Formula E grid, alongside competitors like Porsche, Jaguar, Nissan and the Indian team, Mahindra.
Note: The last international racing event hosted by India was in 2013 when the country hosted the Formula 1 Indian Grand Prix at the Buddh International Circuit, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh.
Click here for the 2023 Race schedule.
Global Family Day 2023 – January 1
Global Family Day, also known as World Peace Day, is annually observed across the globe on January 1 to promote the concept of harmony and unity in the world.
In 1999, UN members were given the chance to mark January 1 as “Global Family Day” officially.
- The day aims to highlight the binding force of humanity despite the religious, cultural, and linguistic differences among people worldwide.
- The day was started in 1997, when the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) launched the International Decade for the Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World, with effect from the 1st day of the new millennium.
Cyclone Mandous: Govt Approves Rs 28.11 crore for AP Tobacco Farmers
Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Commerce & Industry, approved Rs 28.11 crore to provide immediate relief to over 28,000 flue-cured Virginia (FCV) Tobacco farmers affected by Cyclone Mandous in Andhra Pradesh (AP). The fund extends a special interest-free loan of Rs 10,000 to each member of Tobacco Boards Growers Welfare Schemes, which shall benefit around 28,112 farmers under the Southern Regions (Southern Light Soil and Southern Black Soil) of AP.
- The interest-free loan to the eligible FCV Tobacco farmers will be administered by the Tobacco Board, a statutory body under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
- FCV tobacco is a major commercial crop grown in 10 districts of AP with an annual production of 121 m.kg (2021-22) grown in an area of 66,000 ha. Out of the total unmanufactured tobacco exports (excluding Tobacco Refuse), FCV tobacco exports accounted for 53.62 percent in terms of quantity and 68.47 percent in terms of value during FY 2021-22.
The name, ‘Mandous’, was suggested by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in 2020 as a member of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO).