Current Affairs | National | International | SSC | UPSC - 11th October 2023


National News

1. Tanzanian President Samia Hassan becomes the first woman to receive an honorary doctorate from JNU

  • Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan was awarded an honorary doctorate by Jawaharlal Nehru University on 10 October 2023, becoming the first woman to be awarded the honour. President Hassan has reached India on 8 October 2023 on a four-day visit.
  • Expressing his gratitude on this occasion, Dr. Hasan said that this honor will always remain in her memory as this is the first award for her in a foreign country.
  • Our trade relations with Tanzania date back several centuries, when traders from the west coast of India first traveled to East Africa along the sea route for trade and commerce.
  • Foreign Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar said education and capacity building are important aspects of India-Tanzania relations. More than five thousand Tanzanian citizens have been trained in educational institutions in India.
  • The President of Tanzania received training under the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) program at the National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj in Hyderabad in the year 1998. ITEC is a capacity- building program offered by the Ministry of External Affairs under which officers and civilians receive training in the defense sector. 

2. ‘National Framework for Climate Services’ (NFCS) will be formed under the leadership of India Meteorological

  • India will launch its first national level framework ‘National Framework for Climate Services’ (NFCS) led by India Meteorological Department (IMD) to provide climate services and information. 
  • NFCS will be set up on the Global Framework for Climate Services lines. It will provide a seamless working platform for users of climate information and services and help address and mitigate climate risks across key sectors – agriculture, energy, disaster management, health and water. 
  • Along with the identified areas of focus, other relevant sectors like transport, tourism and other emerging sectors may also be added from time to time in future. 
  • Initially, NFCS will work to bridge the functional gaps between different agencies that require climate services. These include hydrology, power, renewable energy, transport, dams and irrigation, health agencies at central, state and other levels. 
  • Since the announcement of the Framework for Climate Services in 2009, Switzerland, China, Germany and the United Kingdom have launched NFCS. 

Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS)

  • The announcement of establishing the GFCS was made during the Third World Climate Conference held in Geneva in 2009. The objective of the GFCS is to generate high quality data from national and international databases on temperature, precipitation, wind, soil moisture and ocean state and other important weather parameters. 
  • The five major components under the GFCS are observations and monitoring, research, modeling and prediction, climate services information systems, user interface platforms and capacity building. 
  • Countries where NFCS implementation is in an advanced stage include Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Guinea, Madagascar, Moldova, Niger, Senegal, Chad, Togo, Tanzania, Vanuatu and South Africa. 

3. India re-elected as President of the Asia-Pacific Institute 

  • India has been elected as President of the Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development General Conference (AIBD GC) for the 3rd successive term to lead the prestigious international organization. 
  • India had already served two terms as President from 2018–2021 and 2021–2023. 
  • This milestone has happened for the first time in the history of AIBD, which is a 50-year-old organization and this indicates the confidence of the broadcasting organizations across the Asia Pacific and the world that India can show the way, lead the way in providing a new value of broadcasting. 
  • AIBD, established in 1977 under the auspices of UNESCO, is a unique regional inter-governmental organization, that currently has 92 member organizations from across 44 countries, including 26 Government Members (countries) represented by 48 broadcasting authorities and broadcasters, and 44 Affiliates (organizations) of which represented by 28 countries and regions in Asia, Pacific, Europe, Africa, Arab States and North America. 
  • India is one of the founding members of AIBD and Prasar Bharati, India’s public service broadcaster is the representative body of the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Government of India at AIBD. 

4. President Murmu inaugurated International Research Conference 

  • President Droupadi Murmu has inaugurated the International Research Conference on Just and Resilient Agri-Food Systems organized in New Delhi.
  • Indian Council of Agricultural Research and Consultative Group on International Agri-Research Gender Platform are going to host this conference. 
  • It is titled “From Research to Impact Towards Just and Resilient Agri-food Systems” 
  • The conference addressed the gender and social inequalities that lie at the heart of food systems. The conference aims to promote the sharing of cutting-edge knowledge on gender and inclusion in agri-food systems to help bridge the gap between research and practice and foster gender-equal and socially inclusive, resilient food system. 

President Murmu in News 

  • President Murmu inaugurated first Uttar Pradesh International Trade Show in Noida 
  • President Murmu launched Ayushman Bhav campaign aimed at achieving Universal Health Coverage for all.
  • President Murmu confers National Teachers’ Award for 2023 on 75 teachers 
  • President Murmu unveiled the statue of Mahatma Gandhi and ‘Gandhi Vatika’ in New Delhi 
  • President Murmu launches advanced frigate Vindhyagiri in banks of Hooghly River, Kolkata 

5. Petroleum Minister Inaugurates 26th Energy Technology Meet At Bharat Mandapam 

  • In the esteemed presence of notable dignitaries, Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, the Hon’ble Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Housing and Urban Affairs inaugurated the 26th Energy Technology Meet at Bharat Mandapam, New Delhi.
  • Highlighting India’s growing energy demand, Minister Puri projected: 
  • Currently, India stands as the world’s third-largest consumer of oil. 
  • The third-largest LPG consumer.
  • The fourth-largest LNG importer 
  • The fourth-largest refiner.
  • The fourth-largest automobile market globally. 
  • Shri Hardeep Singh Puri also announced that India has exceeded its biofuel blending targets. Furthermore, the ambitious target of 20 percent biofuel blending, originally set for 2030, has now been advanced to 2025. 

6. Tele Manas Seva has counselled 3.5 lakh people: Mandaviya 

  • The Tele Manas Seva, launched last year on the occasion of World Mental Health Day, has counselled more than 3,50,000 people till date and currently provides counselling to 2,000 people through 44 Tele Manas Cells. More than 1,000 calls are being received on this helpline every day, said Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya at the National Mental Health Conclave organised to mark World Mental Health Day here on Tuesday. The Minister also virtually inaugurated new facilities at NIMHANS and launched the logo of Tele-MANAS. 
  • Ayushman Bharat health and wellness centres have facilitated the integration of mental health services with primary health services as priority services for mental health, neurological disorders and substance use disorders. Now to improve coverage and access to mental health care, district-level activities have been supported under the National Mental Health Programme in 743 districts across all 36 States/union territories," added the Minister. 
  • Certificates awarded On the occasion, the Minister congratulated the States/union territories on their performance, and awarded certificates of appreciation with memento for achieving the highest number of calls in the National TeleMental Health Programme. Ranking from first to third, in the larger States category, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, and Uttar Pradesh were awarded. In the smaller States category, Telangana, Jharkhand, and Kerala were awarded. 

International News

7. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's medieval weapon "Wagh Nakh" will be brought to India from the London Museum. 

  • The Ministry of Cultural Affairs of Maharashtra has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Victoria and Albert Museum in London to bring back the "Wagh Nakh", the legendary medieval weapon of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, to the state.
  • The MoU states that the ancient weapon will be handed over to the Maharashtra government on a loan basis for a period of three years, during which it will be displayed in museums across the state. 
  • The 'Wagh Nakh', literally meaning 'tiger's claws', is a unique medieval dagger used in the Indian subcontinent. This fearsome weapon consisted of four or five curved blades attached to a glove or bar, designed for personal protection or covert attacks. Its sharp blades were capable of cutting skin and flesh with ease. 
  • Chhatrapati Shivaji had to face Afzal Khan, the Bijapur commander appointed to stop Shivaji's strong campaigns in the Konkan. Khan suggested a peaceful meeting, but fearing danger, Shivaji came prepared. 
  • He hid the 'Wagh Nakh' and wore chainmail (armor made of small metal rings) under his dress. When Khan attacked, Shivaji struck 'Wagh Nakh', resulting in Khan's death, ultimately ensuring Shivaji's victory. 

8. Sri Lanka hosts IORA Council of Ministers meeting in Colombo 

  • Sri Lanka has assumed the Chairmanship of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) during the 23rd Council of Ministers meeting held in Colombo. 
  • The association’s member states will hold discussions on collaboration in various sectors, including trade and investment, maritime safety and security, fisheries management, disaster risk management, and the blue economy, among others.
  • Sri Lanka will hold the chairmanship of the association from 2023 to 2025, with the Foreign Minister of Bangladesh ceremoniously handing over the chairmanship to Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister M.U.M. Ali Sabry.
  • The IORA, an intergovernmental organization established in 1997, comprises 23 member states and 11 dialogue partners hailing from regions surrounding the Indian Ocean. 

About Sri Lanka

  • Legislative capital – Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte 
  • Executive and Judicial capital – Colombo
  • Currency – Sri Lankan rupee 
  • President – Ranil Wickremesinghe 
  • Prime Minister – Dinesh Gunawardena 

9. Sheikh Hasina Unveils Largest Project Built With Chinese Aid 

  • Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina marked a historic moment in the country’s infrastructure development by inaugurating the 82-km Padma Bridge Rail Link. The inauguration ceremony took place at Mawa Railway Station in Munshiganj. 
  • The Padma Bridge Rail Link stands out as the largest infrastructure project in Bangladesh financed under Chinese preferential loans, with the Exim Bank of China providing a substantial loan of Tk 21,036.70 crore. This landmark initiative is poised to directly benefit 80 million people and could potentially boost Bangladesh’s economic growth by 1.5%. 
  • The project, estimated to cost Tk 39,246.80 crore, holds the promise of a considerable economic boost for Bangladesh. It is expected to increase the country’s economic growth by enhancing connectivity and facilitating smoother transportation across regions. 

10. What Is Hamas, The Palestinian Militant Group? 

  • In October 2023, Hamas, an Islamist militant group governing the Gaza Strip, launched a massive surprise attack on southern Israel, killing hundreds of civilians and soldiers and taking dozens as hostages. 
  • Hamas, short for Harakat al-Muqawama al-Islamiya (Islamic Resistance Movement), was founded in 1987 by Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, a Palestinian cleric with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. 
  • It emerged during the first intifada as the political arm of the Brotherhood in Gaza. It gained popularity for the social services it provided and as a rejection of Fatah’s perceived corruption. 
  • Since Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza in 2005, Hamas has been the de facto authority in the territory. It won a majority in the PA’s legislature in 2006 and established its government. 

11. Biden interviewed as part of probe into classified documents 

  • US. President Joe Biden has been interviewed as part of an independent investigation into his handling of classified documents, the White House said late on Monday. It's a possible sign that the investigation is nearing its end. 
  • Special counsel Robert Hur is examining the improper retention of classified documents by Mr. Biden from his time as a U.S. Senator and as Vice-President that were found at his Delaware home, as well as at a private office that be used in between his service in the Obama administration and becoming President, Mr. Biden has said He was unaware he had the documents, 
  • lan Sams, a spokesperson for the White House. the counsel's office said in a statement that the interview was voluntary and conducted at the White House on Sunday and Monday. 
  • It's not clear when Mr. Hur's team approached Mr. Biden's lawyers about an interview or how long they'd been negotiating. Asked on August 25 if he planned to sit for an interview with the special counsel, Mr. Biden replied, "There's no such request and no such interest." 
  • The interview could signal that the special counsel investigation is nearing its conclusion. 

12. India can play role to defuse crisis: envoy of Palestine 

  • Palestine Ambassador Adnan Abu Alhaija said on Tuesday that India's solidarity with the Palestinian cause dates back to Mahatma Gandhi's time and it's X (fo rising global stature and inshar fluence over all key players in West Asia make it well Han placed to play a crucial role in defusing the crisis arising out of the Israel-Hamas conflict. 
  • In an interview to PTI, Alhaija particularly noted that India is a "friend" for both Israel and Palestine and it is "qualified" to work towards bringing down the tensions and contribute towards a solution to the Palestine issue. 

State News

13. Protests in Kolkata against acquittal of accused in 2013 rape-murder case 

  • Citizens, civil rights activists and political workers on Tuesday hit the streets of Kolkata demanding punishment to the convicts in the gang rape and murder of a 21-year-old college student in June 2013. The accused were recently acquitted by the Calcutta High Court. 
  • Hundreds of people, particularly women, staged a march from Victoria House to Gandhi Statue in the Esplanade area demanding justice. 
  • The Calcutta High Court on October 5, acquitted a capital punishment awardee and commuted the death sentence of two others to life imprisonment in the gang rape and murder of a student at Kamduni in North 24 Parganas. In its order, a Division Bench of Justice Joymalya Bagchi and Ajay Kumar Gupta pointed out that the State had failed to prove conspiracy prior to the crime beyond reasonable doubt. The court also pointed out that the State had not led evidence to rebut the possibility of reformation and rehabilitation. 
  • "We expected justice and thought that exemplary punishment in the case would send signals that could curb such crimes. But now, the accused have been acquitted and such crimes will rise," said Mousumi Koyal, a villager from Kamduni, who had led protests about ten years ago. 
  • Along with the villagers of Kamduni, members of civil society and political activists from the Congress and Left parties had also joined the protests in Kolkata. 
  • Meanwhile, the women's wing of the BJP held a protest rally at Kamduni village. Leader of the Opposition Suvendu Adhikari joined the protest rally and blamed the State government for the acquittal. 

14. Dept Of Animal Husbandry And Dairying Launched ‘A-HELP’ Programme In Jharkhand 

  • The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Government of India, recently unveiled the ‘A-HELP‘ (Accredited Agent for Health and Extension of Livestock Production) programme in the state of Jharkhand. 
  • ‘A-HELP’ program is a groundbreaking initiative aimed at empowering women by engaging them as Accredited Agents who will significantly contribute to disease control, animal tagging, and livestock insurance. 
  • The initiative has been made possible through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between DAHD (Department of Animal husbandry and Dairying) and the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) under the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD), Government of India. 

15. 3000 Crore Has Been Approved By Assam For Economic Corridor Project 

  • The Assam cabinet has unveiled an ambitious plan to establish a 1000-km long economic corridor, backed by a significant investment of Rs 3000 crore. The cabinet’s decision marks a substantial step forward in regional development.
  • State Minister Jayanta Malla Baruah informed the press that the state cabinet has granted its in-principle approval for the project under the Asom Mala Scheme, indicating the government’s commitment to this substantial infrastructure endeavor. 
  • In another significant development, the cabinet has approved projects totaling Rs 950 crore aimed at enhancing rural infrastructure. Funding for these projects will be sourced through a loan from NABARD. The funds will be used to upgrade 90 rural roads and four rural bridges managed by the Public Works Department. 

16. Uttarakhand CM Launches App & Portal To Boost Self-Employment

  • The state government of Uttarakhand took a significant step towards empowering its youth by launching the ‘Yuva Uttarakhand mobile application.’ The primary objective of this innovative app is to provide valuable information about self-employment opportunities to the state’s unemployed youth. 
  • In addition to the ‘Yuva Uttarakhand mobile application,’ the Chief Minister also inaugurated the ‘Prayag portal.’ This portal is dedicated to providing job information and serves as a comprehensive resource for job-seeking youth in the state.
  • Chief Minister Dhami, also announced the establishment of self-employment centers in all districts of Uttarakhand which will serve as hubs where local residents can access information and application details related to various self-employment schemes. In a remarkable initiative, two such centers were inaugurated in the first phase, located in Dehradun and Udham Singh Nagar. 

17. Man gets jail term in ISIS Abu Dhabi module case 

  • The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has secured the conviction of an accused in the ISIS Abu Dhabi module case under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. He has been sentenced to seven years of imprisonment. A Delhi court has pronounced Adnan Hassan guilty in a criminal conspiracy case involving two other Indian nationals, Sheikh Azhar Al Islam Sattar Sheikh and Hammed Rafiq Shaikh. 
  • "These individuals are members of the proscribed terrorist organisation, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and, along with Other unidentified associates. 
  • Their conspiracy aimed at identifying, motivating, radicalising, recruiting, and training susceptible youth for planning and execution of terrorist attacks," the agency said. 
  • The NIA had registered the case in 2016, following a directive from the MHA 

18. Delhi L-G sanctions I prosecution in 2010 case 

  • Delhi Lieutenant- Governor V.K. Saxena on Tuesday granted prosecution sanction against author Arundhati Roy and former Kashmir University Professor Sheikh Showkat Hussain in a 13-year-old case where the two were alleged to have propagated the "separation of Kashmir from India" during a conference in the national capital.
  • According to Raj Niwas sources, the FIR in the case was registered on November 29, 2010 on the directions of the Metropolitan Magistrate, New Delhi, under various IPC Sections pertaining to sedition, promoting enmity between different groups on the grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc. with imputations and assertions prejudicial to national integration. 
  • They were also charged under a Section pertaining to public mischief.
  • Sedition excluded A Raj Niwas official said the prosecution sanction was not granted under IPC Section 124A (sedition) owing to the fact that the Supreme Court, in another case, had directed that all pending trials, appeals, and proceedings with respect to the charge framed under Section 124A be kept in abeyance. 
  • The source added the case was also registered under Section 13 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), 1967 but Mr. Saxena did not give prosecution sanction under this Section. 
  • The L-G granted prosecution sanction under Section 196 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), which requires the permission of the State for prosecution. 
  • Ms. Roy, a Booker Prize winner, has been an outspoken political and social activist who has written on various issues, including human rights and the environment. 
  • She did not respond when The Hindu reached out to her for comment. 

19. Manipur govt. holds meeting to chalk out plan for disposal of 94 unclaimed bodies 

  • Five months after ethnic violence erupted in Manipur, the State government is in the process of firming up a plan for the disposal of unclaimed bodies. An official record blamed the civil society organisations (CSOs) for causing hindrance in the "timely disposal of bodies" by taking decisions on behalf of the relatives of the dead.
  • As many as 94 bodies are lying unclaimed in the mortuaries at government hospitals in Imphal and Churachandpur. Six bodies are yet to be identified. 
  • On October 7, Manipur Chief Secretary Vineet Joshi chaired a meeting with Advocate-General Lenin Singh Hijam and other officials to discuss the issue of "identification and disposal of bodies in connection with the ongoing law 
  • Most of the unclaimed bodies belong to the Kuki-Zo people from the hill districts and order crisis". 
  • Most of the unclaimed rites". bodies belong to the Kuki- Zo people from the hill districts. They have been kept at two Imphal hospitals, the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences and the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences. 
  • District officials and the police informed the committee that the families were unable to take an independant decision, as CSOS were deciding on their behalf, causing hindrance to the timely disposal of bodies. According to the minutes of the meeting, the Deputy Commissioner and Superintendent of Police, 
  • Kangpokpl, a hill district, highlighted that earlier the next of kin were willing to take back the bodies but now they have expressed that they will follow the steps taken by the CSOs in matters related to "burial or performance of the last. 
  • A representative of the Indigenous Tribal Leaders Forum (ITLF) from Churachandpur said it was not safe for any Kuki-Zo family to travel to Imphal. 
  • Man on video identified The police have identified the person seen in a video that went viral on October 8. The video showed a body being set on fire in a trench. Kuldiep Singh, security adviser, Manipur government, said the deceased was identified as Laldenthanga Khongsai, 37, a resident of Kangpokpi district. "His body is lying in the JNIMS." 

20. Skill scam: a clear-cut Or case of swindling, A.P. C government tells SC 

  • The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked the Andhra Pradesh government whether a trial court order remanding former Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu will continue to remain valid if corruption charges against him fail for lack of sanction under Section 17A of the Prevention of Corruption Act
  • The State argued on Tuesday in the Supreme Court that the charges against Mr. Naidu in the skill development scam case was a "clear-cut one of embezzlement and not remotely related to his duties of public office. 
  • Appearing before a Bench of Justices Anirudd ha Bose and Bela M. Trivedi, senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi and advocate Mahfooz A. Nazki, for the State, said Mr. Naidu cannot avail the protection of Section 17A, which mandates prior sanction for investigation, under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
  • The State argued that the former Chief Minister had indulged in the scam in a deliberate and calculated manner, causing huge loss to the exchequer. 
  • Fabrication of records and misappropriation of funds cannot be termed as official duty within the meaning of Section 17A, Mr. Rohatgi submitted.
  • On Monday, the court had observed that Section 17A cannot be invoked to sabotage the very objective of the anti-corruption law. 
  • The State further argued that the cause of action and the investigation in the case pre-dated the introduction of Section 17a In July 2018. Mr. Rohatgi said immunity provided under the provision cannot be retrospectively. used
  • On Monday, senior advocate Harish Salve, for Mr. Naidu had submitted that Section 17A was a protection tailored for public servants against regime revenge. Mr. Salve and senior advocate Siddharth Luthra had argued that no sanction was received under Section 17A before sudden- ly initiating prosecution against Mr. Naidu by registering an FIR, 21 months ago, in the skill development scam case. 

21. NewsClick founder, official sent to judicial custody for 10 days

  • A Delhi court on Tuesday sent NewsClick founder Prabir Purkayastha and human resources department (HR) head Amit Chakraborty to judicial custody for 10 days in the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) case registered against them by the Delhi Police.
  • This came after the police submitted in court that although the two need not be remanded at this stage of the investigation they should be sent to judicial custody to prevent them from hampering the investigation in any manner. 
  • Additional Sessions Judge Hardeep Kaur passed the order in spite of counsel for the accused maintaining that the allegations in the first informa- tion report (FIR) did not constitute an offence under the UAPA. 
  • Appearing for Mr. Pur kayastha, advocate Arsh deep Khurana submitted in the court that his client faced no allegations with reference to explosive substances or the murder of a public functionary 
  • He added that his clients were journalists and that reporting could not become an offence. He also maintained that journalists could not be punished for criticising the government in power. 
  • Appearing for the police, Additional Public Prosecutor Atul Srivastava submitted that the purpose of the accused was not criticising [the government] but spreading propaganda at the behest of a country [China] that is inimical to India. 
  • The Delhi High Court had on Monday reserved verdict on pleas by Mr. Purkayastha and Mr. Chakraborty, challenging their remand in the case. 

22. HC seeks report on voyeurism incident at IIT-D in two weeks

  • The Delhi police have been asked to file a status report in the case where a 20-year-old contractual sweeper was arrested for secretly filming nearly 10 girl students while they were changing Inside a washroom at IIT Delhi. 
  • The Delhi High Court, which took suo motu cognisance of the incident on Monday, has given the police two weeks' time to file their response. 
  • A Bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Sanjeev Narula said the incident highlights the "lapses in security measures employed for college festivals across the State, resulting in injuries, violations, and trauma for students". 
  • The court asked the investigating officer to ensure that the identity of the victims is not revealed. It said prompt action should be taken to prevent the dissemination of the photographs or video recorded by the accused. The court also ordered IIT Delhi, Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, and Delhi University to submit a report about their existing policy on the security measures undertaken while hosting cultural festivals,
  • The High Court, which had earlier dealt with the incident of alleged sexual harassment of girl students during a cultural festival at Delhi University's Gargi College in February 2020, said it has been confronted with several cases of sur dent harassment during such festivals.
  • Over the past year, Delhi University's girl students have reported several cases of sexual harassment. In March, a group of men scaled the boundary walls of Indraprastha College for Women and harassed several students who were celebrating the college's annual festival. 
  • A similar incident occurred at Miranda House on October 14 last year. 

23. ED takes possession of Raja's properties 

  • The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has taken possession of 15 immovable properties allegedly owned by DMK MP A. Raja in the name of a benami company M/s Kovai Shelters Promoters India Pvt. Ltd. 
  • The Central investigation agency invoked provisions under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 in a disproportionate assets case against the former Union Minister, and took possession of the assets. 
  • ED investigation revealed that Mr. Raja, during his tenure as the Union Minister of Environment and Forests (2004-07), had granted Environmental Clearances to a real estate company, one of the largest firms in the country and also listed on BSE, based out of Gurugram. 
  • The ED in a statement said that the real estate company had given "kickback" to Mr. Raja for awarding the Environmental Clearance in the garb of land commission income in the hands of his benami company. 

Defence News

24. Two militants shot dead in Shopian encounter 

  • Two Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militants were killed in an anti-militancy operation in south Kashmir's Shopian. 
  • The militants were identified as Marifat Maqbool, a resident of Cheigund Kee- gam, Shopian, and Jazim Farooq alias Abrar, a resident of Heff Shirmal, Shopian. Farooq was involved in the killing of a Kashmiri Pandit, Sanjay Sharma, this year, the police said. 
  • The militants were encircled on Monday night in the Alshipora area of Shopian during a joint cordon-and-search operation by the police, the Army and the CRPF. "The hiding terrorists fired indiscriminately upon them, which was retaliated effectively leading to an encounter? the police said. Incriminating materials and arms were recovered from the site, the police said. 

Economy News

25. India’s Net Direct Tax Collections Surge By 21.8%, Surpassing Half Of Budget Projections 

  • India has witnessed a remarkable increase in its net direct tax collections, with a substantial growth rate of 21.8% amounting to ₹9.57 lakh crore by October 9. 
  • This surge has exceeded over half of the annual Budget estimates. The boost is primarily attributed to a 32.5% rise in personal income tax revenues and a 12.4% increase in corporate taxes. 
  • Personal income tax collections have seen a remarkable upswing of 32.5%. This highlights the robust contribution of individual taxpayers to the country’s tax revenue. Corporate taxes have also played a crucial role in this tax collection surge, showing a healthy increase of 12.4%. 

26. IMF Raises India’s FY24 GDP Growth Forecast To 6.3% 

  • In its October 2023 World Economic Outlook (WEO) report, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) raised India’s economic growth forecast for the fiscal year 2023-24. 
  • The growth projection was increased from 6.1% to 6.3% due to stronger-than-expected consumption during April-June. The report also highlighted India’s resilient domestic economic activity and the positive impact of robust domestic demand, contrasting global economic trends. 
  • The IMF also anticipated retail inflation in India to rise to 5.5% in fiscal 2023-24 before easing to 4.6% in 2024-25. This projection aligns with the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) inflation target over the medium term. 

Schemes and committee News

27. Chhattisgarh Chief Minister launched 'Yuva Mitan Parivahan Yojana' 

  • Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel launched 'Chhattisgarh Yuva 
  • Mitan Parivahan Yojana' in a program organized at his residence office. Under this, students studying in college will get free transportation from home to college. 
  • On this occasion, the Chief Minister said that under this scheme, more than 1 lakh regular students studying in government colleges and government universities will be benefited. 
  • The scheme will entail a financial outlay of approximately Rs 110 crore, of which half will be borne by the state government and the other half will be borne by the bus operators in the form of concessions. 
  • Under 'Chhattisgarh Yuva Mitan Parivahan Yojana', students will get the facility to travel from home to college. Free transport will make it easier for students to pursue higher education. 
  • This scheme will also be financially helpful for the students. This scheme will save time of students and promote social inclusion among students. 

28. Jharkhand government started 'Abu Veer Dishom Campaign' 

  • 'Abu Veer Dishom Abhiyan 2023' was launched in the state of Jharkhand. On this occasion, it was resolved to form and reconstitute the Forest Rights Committee at the village level to grant forest rights leases to forest dependent people and communities. 
  • Chief Minister Hemant Soren also pledged to make dedicated and concerted efforts to protect water, forests, land and its resources by implementing the proposed Abua Veer Dishom Abhiyan, 2023 (Forest Rights Campaign, 2023) and recommend as per Forest Rights Rules . 
  • More than 30,000 gram sabhas in the state will form and reconstitute village level forest rights committees under the Forest Rights Act from October 3 to October 18. 
  • Deputy Commissioners will hold meetings with district level forest division officers and revenue officers in their respective districts in the first and second week of October and will ensure to prepare a complete action plan to ensure availability of all types of land records and forest maps. For action in village level forest rights committee. Formation of FRC cell at district level, sub-division and block level will be ensured. 
  • A copy of the claims recommended to the SDLC by the decision taken by the Gram Sabha on the claims submitted by the Village Level Forest Rights Committee will be given to the Block Level FRA Cell. 

29. Govt Introduces Shreshta Scheme For Quality Education Of Scheduled Caste Students 

  • In a remarkable move towards enhancing education and bolstering the socio-economic advancement of Scheduled Caste (SC) students, the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment has unveiled the ‘Scheme for Residential Education for Students in High Schools in Targeted Areas’ (SHRESHTA). 
  • SHRESHTA, designed to provide high-quality education to SC students, aims to create an environment conducive to their holistic development and secure their future prospects. The scheme’s implementation comprises two distinct approaches. The first category includes top CBSE/State Board-affiliated private residential schools known as SHRESHTA institutions. 
  • The second implementation approach relates to existing NGO/VO-operated schools and hostels. This approach is specifically intended for educational institutions up to the 12th grade that are managed by voluntary organizations (VOs) and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). 

Appointment News

30. Navneet Munot Elected Chairman Of The Association Of Mutual Funds In India (AMFI) 

  • The Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI) has recently elected Navneet Munot, the Managing Director and CEO of HDFC Asset Management, as the Chairman during a Board meeting. 
  • Munot, a Chartered Accountant and a CFA charter holder, boasts over three decades of experience in the financial services sector. He will succeed A Balasubramanian, Managing Director of Aditya Birla Sun Life Asset Management Company, who will complete two consecutive terms in October. 
  • The Board of AMFI has also elected Anthony Heredia, MD and CEO of Mahindra Manulife Mutual Fund, as the Vice-Chairman. With his extensive experience in the investment management industry, Heredia takes over the role from Radhika Gupta, MD of Edelweiss Asset Management. 

Banking and Financial News

31. GST Council hikes age limit for Appellate Tribunals’ president 

  • The tenure of the president of the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT) has been increased to 70 years of age from 67 years earlier, revealed the GST Council in its 52nd meeting.
  • The Council also added that the members can hold their post till they attain the age of 67 years as opposed to 65 years earlier. 
  • The minimum age for the president and members has been set to 50 years by the Council. Finance Minister Niramala Sitharaman pointed out that the advocates should have a minimum experience of 10 years to become judicial members. 
  • The Council also provided a GST exemption on flour containing 70% of millet. The Council also decided to reduce the GST levied on molasses to 5% from 18% earlier. The Council also provided an exemption on alcohol for human consumption.

32. RBI Directs Bank Of Baroda To Halt New Customer Onboarding On Its Mobile App 

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has taken a significant step to address supervisory concerns by ordering Bank of Baroda (BoB) to immediately halt the onboarding of new customers onto their mobile app, ‘bob World‘. 
  • The directive from RBI underscores the presence of material supervisory concerns that have arisen during the customer onboarding procedures of ‘bob World,’ the mobile app provided by Bank of Baroda. These concerns have prompted RBI to intervene and ensure the rectification of these deficiencies. 
  • Bank of Baroda is committed to ensuring that the existing customers who are already onboarded onto the ‘bob World’ app will not experience any disruptions or inconveniences due to this suspension. The bank is taking steps to guarantee the seamless continuation of services for its current user base. 

Important day

33. 11 October – International Day of the Girl Child

  • The International Day of the Girl is observed every year on October 11. 
  • Objective – To raise awareness about gender inequality and advocate for the rights and empowerment of girls.
  • Theme 2023 – Invest in Girls’ Rights: Our Leadership, Our Well-being 
  • The concept of recognizing the rights of girls started to take shape in 1995 at the World Conference on Women in Beijing, China. Later, on December 18, 2011, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declared October 11 to be observed as the International Day of the Girl Child to recognize the challenges that girls face across the world. 

Books and Authors News

34. Director Vivek Agnihotri launches his latest book ‘The Book of Life’ in Lucknow  

  • 'The Kashmir Files' fame Vivek Agnihotri launches his book "The Book of Life: My Dance with Buddha for Success" in India in Lucknow and also discusses his latest film 'The Vaccine War'.
  • The film director also interacted with his fans at Universal Booksellers. The director was also accompanied by Dr. Balram Bhargava, author of the book on which the film is based. 
  • In his address, Agnihotri called the production of this film, as well as other films made under his direction, as "CSR – i.e. cinematic social responsibility". He said it is important to make films on important issues while those issues are still relevant, “and as a filmmaker I have always tried to do that. 

Science and technology News

35. Amazon launches first internet satellite prototype under Project Kuiper 

  • Amazon has launched the first internet satellite prototype in its ambitious effort to establish 'Project Kuiper' global satellite internet network. Under this, two satellites Kuipersat-1 and Kuipersat-2 were launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida from the Atlas V rocket of the Boeing- Lockheed joint venture United Launch Alliance.
  • Launched in 2019, Amazon's Project Kuiper aspires to bridge the digital divide by providing fast internet access to underserved communities globally. Additionally, satellite Internet can serve as a vital communications lifeline during natural disasters such as hurricanes. 
  • This visionary project aims to deploy 3,236 satellites in low Earth orbit. To bring Project Kuiper to fruition, Amazon has invested a staggering more than $10 billion. The company recently inaugurated a $120 million pre-launch processing facility in Florida, underscoring the magnitude of its ambitions. 
  • In a landmark corporate agreement, Amazon signed contracts worth $7.4 billion with United Launch Alliance (ULA), Arianespace and Blue Origin to launch Kuiper satellites. Under which about 83 launches will be launched in the next five years. 
  • Amazon faces a challenge from SpaceX, which has already amassed more than 2 million customers for its Starlink satellite internet service. 

36. cientists revealed the existence of the sixth basic taste ‘sensation’ 

  • The traditional five basic tastes, sweet, sour, salty, bitter and umami, have been part of our understanding of taste for years. But recent scientific research has revealed evidence of a sixth basic taste sensation.
  • Researchers have identified ammonium chloride as the sixth basic taste 'sensation' along with sweet, sour, salty, bitter and umami. Salt licorice, a popular candy in northern European countries, usually contains salmiac salt or ammonium chloride. 
  • The study, published in Nature Communications, shows that ammonium chloride, found in some Scandinavian candies, activates the OTOP1 protein receptor on the tongue. This receptor responsible for detecting sour taste responds to the effect of ammonium chloride on hydrogen ion concentrations within cells. The research sheds light on taste perception mechanisms and suggests that tasting ammonium chloride may have evolved as a means of avoiding noxious substances. 

Sixth basic taste sensation 

  • To validate their findings, the scientists used a technique that measures electrical conductivity, simulating nerve signal conduction. 
  • Normal rat taste cells responded to ammonium chloride with increased action potentials. Genetically engineered mice lacking OTOP1 had no response. This confirmed their hypothesis that OTOP1 responds to salt, generating an electrical signal in taste bud cells. 

Ranks and Reports News

37. Mukesh Ambani Surpasses Gautam Adani As India’s Richest On Hurun List 

  • According to the 360 ONE Wealth Hurun India Rich List for 2023 released recently, Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani has surged ahead of Adani Group’s Gautam Adani to claim the title of the richest Indian. 
  • Mukesh Ambani, the chairman of Reliance Industries, saw his wealth grow by a modest 2 percent, reaching a staggering Rs 8.08 lakh crore. This significant wealth increment has solidified his position as the wealthiest individual in India. 
  • Cyrus Poonawalla, the Managing Director and Chairman of Serum Institute of India (SII), retained his position as the third wealthiest individual in India. His fortune experienced an impressive 36 percent jump, reaching Rs 2.78 lakh crore. 
  • Shiv Nadar, the founder and chairman of HCL Technologies, maintained his position as the fourth richest Indian. His wealth increased by 23 percent to reach Rs 2.28 lakh crore. 

Sports News

38. Ayodhya to host National Archery Championship in November 2023 

  • The Senior National Archery Championship will be held in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh from 25 to 30 November 2023. 
  • The championship will feature individual, team, and mixed team events under Indian, recurve, and compound rounds. 
  • The competition will be inaugurated by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on November 25. 
  • Union sports minister Anurag Thakur will participate in the closing ceremony. 

About Uttar Pradesh 

  • Capital – Lucknow
  • Chief Minister – Yogi Adityanath 
  • Governor – Anandiben Patel 

39. Iran’s Shadloui becomes costliest player in Pro Kabaddi League auction at ₹2.35 Crore 

  • Iran’s Mohammadreza Shadloui Chiyaneh emerged as the costliest player in the history of the Pro Kabaddi League auction after he was bought for Rs 2.35 crore by Puneri Paltan.This made him the league’s most expensive foreign player, overtaking Fazel Atrachali’s previous price of ₹1.38 crore last year with Puneri Paltan. 
  • While India’s Maninder Singh was roped in by Bengal Warriors for Rs 2.12 crore.
  • A total of 137 matches will be played in the 10th edition of PKL. As many as 132 league stage matches will be followed by the playoff comprising five matches — two eliminators, two semifinals and the final. 

40. National Games 2023 To Be Held In Goa From Oct. 26 To Nov. 9 

  • The 37th edition of the National Games, scheduled for 2023, is set to take place in the picturesque state of Goa. After multiple delays and changes in hosting rights, the event is finally slated to run from October 26 to November 9, marking the first time Goa has hosted this prestigious competition.
  • The National Games 2023 will feature an impressive 43 sports, including both Olympic and indigenous disciplines, a significant increase from the 36 sports in the previous edition. Several sports will make their National Games debut, such as Kho Kho, yogasana, and mallakhamb. 
  • With over 10,000 athletes expected to participate, the National Games 2023 promises to be a grand spectacle of Indian sports talent. The various sporting competitions will be spread across multiple venues throughout Goa. However, cycling and golf will be held in New Delhi. 

41. IOC And Reliance Foundation Join Forces To Promote Olympic Values In India 

  • The International Olympic Committee (IOC) with the Olympic Museum has aligned with Reliance Foundation to build on the success of the Olympic Values Education Programme (OVEP) in India and signed a new cooperation agreement. 
  • This agreement underscores the organisations’ shared priority to promote Olympic values through sport among young people. The new cooperation was agreed upon by IOC President Thomas Bach and Nita Ambani, IOC Member in India and Reliance Foundation Founder Chairperson, during a visit to the Reliance Foundation Young Champs (RFYC) football academy in Mumbai. 
  • The IOC and Reliance Foundation plan to focus on three main areas: 1) Grade-specific activities in selected schools to promote Olympism and the Olympic values and instill positive behavioural changes. 2) Virtual and in-person sessions between athletes and students to promote physical activity and discuss Olympic values. 3) Raise awareness of Olympic values through interactive games, quizzes and workshops at sporting and educational events. 

Agreement News

42. Bridgestone Partners With Tata Power To Install EV Chargers For Four Wheelers

  • Tyre manufacturer Bridgestone India has announced a significant collaboration with Tata Power to promote electric mobility in the country. Under this partnership, Tata Power will install high-capacity DC fast chargers at Bridgestone dealerships across India, making it easier for electric vehicle (EV) owners to recharge their vehicles quickly and conveniently. 
  • Tata Power will deploy 25/30 KWh capacity DC fast chargers, which are capable of charging a four-wheeler within one hour. This rapid charging capability allows for the efficient use of these chargers, with the potential to serve 20-24 vehicles in a single day. The chargers will operate 24×7, ensuring round-the-clock availability for EV owners. 
  • To ensure a seamless charging experience, Tata Power will provide installation, charging assistance, and maintenance support for the chargers. In addition, they will offer remote vehicle charging monitoring and e-payment services through the E-Charge mobile application. 

43. India, Italy Sign Defence Agreement

  • India and Italy have cemented their defense cooperation with the signing of a significant agreement. The agreement, signed during the official visit of India’s Defense Minister, Rajnath Singh, to Italy, encompasses various aspects of security and defense collaboration. 
  • The agreement outlines the following key areas of bilateral cooperation: 
  • Security and Defense Policy: India and Italy will collaborate on defining and shaping security and defense policies. 
  • Research and Development: Joint efforts will be made in research and development projects related to defense technology and innovation.
  • Education in the Military Field: Both nations will promote educational exchanges and partnerships in military training and knowledge sharing. 
  • Maritime Domain Awareness: Enhancing awareness and security in maritime domains will be a focus of the cooperation. 
  • Sharing of Defense Information: India and Italy will exchange crucial defense information to strengthen their defense capabilities. 
  • Industrial Cooperation: The two nations will work together on co-development, co-production, and establishing joint ventures in the defense sector. 

44. India and Tanzania agree on 5-year roadmap for defence cooperation 

  • India and Tanzania have agreed on a five-year roadmap to significantly expand defence cooperation following talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan. 
  • The two countries inked six agreements providing for cooperation in the digital domain, culture, sports, maritime industries and white shipping information sharing. 
  • Both sides were also working on an agreement to increase trade in local currencies. He described India and Tanzania as important partners for trade and investment. 

About Tanzania

  • Capital– Dodoma 
  • Currency– Tanzanian shilling 
  • President- Samia Suluhu Hassan 
  • Recently India signed MoUs with others countries 
  • India & Saudi Arabia tie up for electrical interconnections, green hydrogen 
  • India and Argentina signed a Social Security Agreement (SSA). 
  • US & Vietnam sign deal on semiconductor supply chains 
  • India and Armenia sign MoU in the field of sharing successful Digital Solutions 
  • India and Saudi Arabia sign Agreement on Cooperation in Energy Sector 
  • India and New Zealand signs a MoU to boost cooperation in civil aviation Indian polity 

45. ED searches AAP MLA Amanatullah Khan's house in Delhi 

  • The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Tuesday searched the residential premises of Aam Aadmi red Party (AAP) MLA Amanatullah Khan in Delhi in connection with a money laundering case.
  • Mr. Khan faces allegations with respect to the first information reports n registered by the State Anti Corruption Bureau and the 1 CBI. 
  • In November 2016, the CBI had booked Mr. Khan as a former Delhi Waqf Board chairman for alleged role in a recruitment scam in the Board. He was accused of recruiting over 35 persons, including the Board's CEO, in violation of Section 24 of the Wakf Act and Delhi Wakf Rules.
  • It was also alleged that encroachers and tenants were allowed to occupy Waqf properties in Delhi in violation of the Waqf Properties Lease Rules, purportedly causing losses to the Board. 
  • Addressing a press conference, AAP Rajya Sabha MP Raghav Chadha said, 
  • Sanjay Singh to be in ED custody till October 13 
  • A Delhi court on Tuesday extended the Enforcement Directorate (ED) custody of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh till October 13. Mr. Singh was arrested on October 4 in connection with the alleged Delhi excise policy scam case. AAP supporters held a protest against the arrest of the MP. 
  • "Since the INDIA alliance has been formed, raids and summons by these agencies are going on increasing. They are targeting the leaders of the INDIA alliance and this shows their fear."

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