Current Affairs | National | International | SSC | UPSC - 6th January 2024

1. Fierce explosion in Indonesia's volcano Mount Levotobi Laki-Laki 

  • A volcanic eruption occurred 1.5 kilometers (4,800 ft) above the peak of Mount Levotobi Laki-Laki in East Nusa Tenggara province on January 2, 2024, according to the Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation (PVMBG). 
  • Levotobi is a twin volcano located in the southeastern part of the island of Flores, Indonesia. It includes the Levotobi Laki-Laki (male Levotobi) and Levotobi Perempuan (female Levotobi) stratovolcanoes. 
  • Volcanic ash from recent eruptions has affected two sub-districts near Mount Levotobi Laki-Laki, causing more than 2,200 residents to be evacuated to temporary shelters set up by local governments. 1,931 people have been evacuated in Wulangitang (sub-district), and 328 people have been evacuated in Ile Bura (sub-district). 
  • Authorities raised the volcano's status to the second-highest of Indonesia's four-tier alert levels and extended the exclusion zone around its crater from two kilometers to four kilometers (13,100 feet). Frans Seda Airport, more than 80 kilometers away, was closed due to volcanic ash. 
  • The Southeast Asian archipelago lies on the Pacific Ring of Fire, an area of intense volcanic and seismic activity. There are about 130 active volcanoes in Indonesia. Last month, Mount Marapi, meaning "mountain of fire", on the island of Sumatra erupted and killed 23 people. 

2. 5 products of West Bengal including Sundarban honey, Black Nunia rice and Kodiyal sarees got GI tag. 

  • West Bengal has given Geographical Indication-GI tag to 5 products. These include Sundarban honey, black nunia rice of Jalpaiguri district, Garad and Koriyal sarees of Murshidabad, and Tangail sarees of Nadia and East Burdwan have been given the Geographical Indication (GI) tag. 
  • Sundarban honey is collected from the Sundarban forest by the 'Mauli' community. West Bengal Forest Development Corporation Limited collects and processes the honey and sells it under the brand name Mauban. 
  • Kala Nuniya rice is very popular and this indigenous variety of rice is cultivated in Jalpaiguri district. Kodiyal saree is produced only in Mirzapur in Murshidabad district. 
  • Tangail sarees, originally from Bangladesh, are also manufactured in Nadia and East Burdwan. About 20,000 Tangail weavers in Bengal are involved in its production. Garad and Korial produced in Murshidabad district have got GI tag. 
  • A total of 27 items in West Bengal have got the GI tag. These include Darjeeling tea, 'Lakshman Bhog' and 'Himsagar' mangoes of Malda, 'Joynagar Moa', 'Sitabhog' 'Mihidana' of Burdwan, Rasgulla variety of Bengal, 'Gobindbhog' rice, terracotta crafts of Bankura and Baluchari and Coriander sarees etc. 

3. India won the shortest test match in cricket history against South Africa in Cape Town. 

  • The Indian cricket team defeated South Africa by seven wickets in the shortest Test match in the 4. 5 products of West Bengal including Sundarban honey, Black Nunia rice and Kodiyal sarees got GI tag. history of cricket, taking less than two days, on 4 January 2024 at the Newlands Stadium in Cape Town. India's bowlers were on top of the bowling in a contest that lasted 107 overs - 642 balls - with Mohammed Siraj and Bumrah delivering their lethal spells. 
  • After a stellar innings from Siraj (6/15) in the first innings, fast bowler Bumrah (6/61 in 13.5 overs) rattled South Africa's middle-order in a dangerous spell on the second day. 
  • This test match has broken the record of Australia and South Africa in the year 1932 for the shortest test match ever. India won in 642 balls, breaking the record of 656 balls set in Melbourne in 1932. 
  • 23 wickets fell on the first day and South Africa were out for only 55 runs and then bowled out India for 153 runs. India lost its last six wickets without scoring any runs. 
  • South Africa then returned to the crease to start their second innings and ended the first day at 62-3. Aiden Markram played a brilliant inning of 106 runs in just 103 balls. 
  • South Africa eventually fell for 176 runs, leaving India with a modest target of 79 runs to win the match. The Indian team chased down their target in just 12 overs, finishing on 80-3 to level the series 1-1. 
  • India has reached the top of the World Test Championship 2023-25 rankings after registering a historic win over South Africa. This was India's second win in the World Test Championship. According to the current ranking, South Africa is at second place and New Zealand is at third place. India earned 12 important points by defeating South Africa by seven wickets in Cape Town. Due to which India reached the top of the table. 

4. 58th All India Annual Conference of DGP, IGP started in Jaipur 

  • The 58th Annual Conference of Directors General and Inspectors General of Police to be held across India will be held from 5-7 January 2024 at Rajasthan International Centre, Jhalana, Jaipur, Rajasthan. 
  • Important topics like antiterrorism, counter-insurgency and cyber security will be discussed in the three-day conference. The conference will cover various aspects of policing and national security, such as strengthening borders, cyber crime, data governance, counter-terrorism challenges, prison reforms, Left Wing Extremism or Naxalism and drug trafficking. 
  • Last year, the All India Conference of Directors General and Inspectors General of Police in 2022 was held in New Delhi. 
  • The Intelligence Bureau organized the first conference of IGPs in India in 1920 and since then, these conferences have been held regularly in New Delhi. The first such conference organized after independence was inaugurated by the country's first Home Minister, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on 12 January 1950. 
  • Initially, it was a biennial event, but after 1973, became an annual meeting.Since 2014, Prime Minister Modi has shown great interest in the DGP conference. 

5.Telangana - 82nd Indian History Congress 

  • Kakatiya University, Telangana has hosted the 82nd annual session of the Indian History Congress (IHC) from 28 to 30 December 2023. Deputy Chief Minister Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka participated in the concluding session of the IHC annual session on December 30. Indian History Congress was organized in Kakatiya University after 30 years. 
  • Mridula Mukherjee, former professor of Jawaharlal Nehru University and former director of Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi, was the chief guest at its inaugural session. 
  • On the inaugural day, six different sessions were organized on Ancient India, Medieval India, Modern India, Countries Other than India, Archeology and Contemporary India. 

6.Assam Government Initiates ‘Gunotsav 2024’ 

  • The Assam government is gearing up for the fifth edition of ‘Gunotsav 2024,’ a comprehensive state-wide assessment aimed at evaluating the performance of approximately 40 lakh students across government schools. 
  • The initiative, slated to run from January 3 to February 8, 2024, is poised to play a pivotal role in enhancing the quality of education and improving learning outcomes in the state. 
  • ‘Gunotsav’ emphasizes active participation from all stakeholders, including teachers, students, administrators, and local communities. This holistic engagement is expected to foster accountability and contribute to an overall enhancement of the quality of education in Assam. 

7.India Plans ‘Bharat Park’ Trade Zone In UAE For Global Showcase 

  • The Indian government plans to establish ‘Bharat Park,’ a dedicated trade zone in the UAE, featuring showrooms and warehouses to display and store Indian-made goods for a global audience. 
  • Addressing the future of the textile industry, Goyal underscores the prominence of Man Made Fibre Textiles due to challenges in meeting the increasing demand for cotton. 
  • He encourages industry players to leverage free trade agreements with Japan, Australia, UAE, and South Korea, expressing concern over underutilization. 

8.India’s FY24 GDP Growth Projection At 7.3%: NSO Data 

  • The National Statistical Office (NSO) has released its first advance estimates projecting a robust 7.3% growth for India’s GDP in the fiscal year 2023-24. 
  • This surpasses the 7.2% growth recorded in the previous financial year. Notably, the construction sector is expected to lead with double-digit growth at 10.7%. 
  • Real GDP at Constant Prices in FY24 is projected to reach ₹171.79 lakh crore, compared to the provisional estimate of ₹160.06 lakh crore for FY23. 

9.National Birds Day 2024 

  • The United States of America declares January 5 as National Bird Day to raise awareness of the significance of birds to our ecosystem. 
  • The day is set apart to make all of us understand that birds are not made to be caught or had as showpieces in our homes, rather, they are nature’s lovely creatures that deserve to live with complete freedom. 
  • The day was first observed by the Avian Welfare Coalition, which is involved in the cause of promoting awareness about birds that are caught or end up in captivity for either monetary profit or for human entertainment. 

10.World Day Of War Orphans 2024 

  • On January 6, 2024, the world will observe the World Day of War Orphans, a day dedicated to highlighting the struggles and needs of the most vulnerable victims of war – the children. 
  • This day comes amidst ongoing global conflicts, serving as a poignant reminder of the deep and lasting impact war has on the lives of innocent children. 
  • This year, World Day of War Orphans is marked with two powerful themes: “Orphan Lives Matter” and “Standing Up for War-Affected Children.” These themes are a clarion call for global attention and action to support and protect war-affected children. 

11.Union Minister Piyush Goyal Unveils Logo And Booklet For Bharat Mobility Global Expo 2024 

  • At a curtain-raiser program in New Delhi, Union Minister Piyush Goyal revealed the logo and booklet for the highly anticipated “Bharat Mobility Global Expo 2024.” 
  • Scheduled from February 1-3, 2024, at Bharat Mandapam, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, the expo boasts over 600 exhibitors from 50+ countries. 
  • It promises to showcase cutting-edge technologies in various specialized exhibitions, including Auto Show, ACMA Automechanika, large-scale tire exhibition, urban mobility solutions, EV Infra Pavilion, and Battery Tech Pavilion. 
  • The Bharat Mobility Global Expo 2024, an industry-led and government-supported initiative coordinated by the Engineering Export Promotion Council India (EEPC India), will include major battery manufacturers, EV infrastructure services, and a CEO Conclave to discuss the future trajectory of the mobility industry. 

12.Cabinet Approves India-USAID MoU For Railways’ Net-Zero Emission Goal

  • The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has given its approval for the MoU signed between India and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). 
  • The focus of this collaboration is to support Indian Railways in achieving ‘net zero carbon emission’ by the ambitious target year of 2030. 
  • The primary objectives of this strategic alliance are to facilitate utility modernization, deploy advanced energy solutions and systems, foster regional energy and market integration, encourage private sector participation and engagement, and conduct training sessions and workshops. The focus of these initiatives will be on specific technology areas such as renewable energy and energy efficiency. 

13.Sanjiv Aggarwal Appointed CEO And MD Of NIIFL 

  • The National Investment and Infrastructure Fund Limited (NIIFL) has welcomed Sanjiv Aggarwal as its new Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director. 
  • Aggarwal, formerly a partner at the UK-based private equity firm Actis, brings a wealth of experience in energy investments, particularly in the Asian market, including India. 
  • Sanjiv Aggarwal’s impressive track record includes successful stints at renowned financial institutions such as Citigroup and ANZ Investment Bank. Notably, his tenure at Actis saw remarkable accomplishments, including the sale of the Indian renewable energy platform Sprng Energy to Shell Plc for an enterprise value of $1.55 billion in April 2022. 

14.Senior IAS Officer Vikas Sheel Appointed Executive Director, Asian Development Bank 

  • India has appointed seven accomplished civil servants to crucial positions abroad, showcasing the country’s global engagement. Notably, Mr. Vikas Sheel, a seasoned bureaucrat, is now the Executive Director of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Manila, emphasizing India’s commitment to international development. 
  • Vikas Sheel, a 1994-batch Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer, is now the Executive Director at ADB. He brings valuable experience from his current role as Additional Secretary and Mission Director of Jal Jeevan Mission, contributing to India’s representation at this prestigious institution. 
  • Smita Sarangi has been appointed as Adviser to the Executive Director at ADB in Manila, Philippines. Her expertise will play a vital role in India’s collaboration with ADB on important development initiatives. 

15.Raghuram Iyer Appointed As CEO Of Indian Olympic Association 

  • The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has welcomed a seasoned professional, Raghuram Iyer, as its new CEO, marking a significant development after a meticulous selection process conducted by the nomination committee. The appointment, long-awaited and in response to reminders from the International Olympic Committee (IOC), brings a wealth of experience to the forefront. 
  • Raghuram Iyer, the former CEO of Rajasthan Royals, brings a diverse and rich professional background to his new role. His experience extends to prominent positions with IPL teams such as Lucknow Super Giants and Rising Supergiants. 
  • Additionally, he has made contributions to ATK Mohun Bagan in the Indian Super League and served as the CEO of RPSG Mavericks, a table tennis team. 

16.SEBI Names G Ram Mohan Rao As Executive Director For 3 Years 

  • The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) recently announced the appointment of G Ram Mohan Rao as Executive Director (ED) for a tenure of three years. 
  • With over 25 years of experience at SEBI, Rao brings a wealth of expertise to his new role. In his capacity as ED, he will oversee the investigation department and the internal inspection department, reinforcing SEBI’s commitment to maintaining market integrity. 
  • Having served in various capacities over the years, Rao has supervised portfolios such as inspections, litigation, recovery, investor awareness, and grievance redressal. 
  • Rao’s tenure as the Regional Director of the Eastern Regional Office showcased his leadership in managing crucial areas like inspections, collective investment schemes, litigation, and recovery, among others. 

17.Rashmi Shukla Becomes Maharashtra’s First Woman Director General Of Police 

  • The Maharashtra government appointed Rashmi Shukla, a distinguished 1988 batch Indian Police Service (IPS) officer, as the Director General of Police (DGP). This appointment is groundbreaking as Ms. Shukla becomes the first woman to hold this prestigious position in the state. 
  • Ms. Shukla takes over the reins from Rajnish Seth, her batchmate from the 1988 IPS cadre, who recently retired and moved on to become the chairman of the Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC). 
  • Prior to her current appointment, Ms. Shukla led the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) and served as the Additional Director-General of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF). 

18.Google DeepMind Introduces Mobile ALOHA Humanoid Technology 

  • Stanford University has unveiled Mobile ALOHA, a robotic system designed to elevate the capabilities of bimanual mobile manipulation. 
  • Developed in collaboration with Berkeley University and Meta, Mobile ALOHA promises to reshape the landscape of robotics. 
  • This evolution enables the system to replicate complex mobile manipulation tasks, addressing the limitations of traditional imitation learning often confined to tabletop scenarios. 
  • The core objective of Mobile ALOHA is data collection, serving as a stepping stone for learning and mimicking a diverse range of bimanual activities. 

19.IIT Madras Researchers Engineer Plant Cells To Produce Drug For Cancer 

  • Researchers from the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) Madras and Mandi have successfully metabolically engineered plant cells to boost the production of the anti-cancer drug camptothecin (CPT). 
  • CPT, traditionally extracted from the endangered plant Nathapodytes nimmoniana, has been a source of concern due to the plant’s declining population. The International Union for Conservation of Nature has red-listed this species, noting a 20% decrease in its population in the past decade. This development by IIT researchers comes as a critical solution to both medicinal production and plant conservation. 

20. Drug war Antinijer Anal resistance a health issue that will negate advances in medicine 

  • Prevention is better than core, but taking this adage to the extreme in the pr of medicine might date the very purpose of treating patients to recovery, and every turn out to be counterproductive etive in the case of prophylactic use of antibiomes, the rest tant antimicroñal resistance (AMR) will be deadly. The 'First Multicenter Point Prevalence Survey of Antibiotic Use at 20 NAC NET Sites India 20021-22 conducted by the National Centre for Disease Control under the Health Ministry has thrown up startling statistics, but more importantly, examining the minutiae Halicises key to sues that have been flagged by experts for years now. Over 70% of the patients in tertiary-care hospitals across 15 States and two Union Territories were prescribed antibiotics, over 50% of antibiotics prescribed have the potential to cause AMR. But the most crucial reveal was that 50% of the patients surveyed were prescribed antibiotics as prophylaxis, or as a preventive, only 45% were prescribed antibiotics to actually treat infections, of this, only 6% were prescribed the drugs after Identifying the specific bacteria, 
  • AMR occurs when pathogens evolve, fortifying themselves against drugs, and stop responding to antimicrobial drugs. While it is the nature of pathogens to evolve, this ever-increasing crisis is constantly being exacerbated by unsound medical, and animal husbandry practices. It is precisely the sort of misuse and overuse of antimicrobials, as revealed by the survey, which cause the development of drug-resistant pathogens that in turn pose great risk to life and exacerbate morbidity. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that bacterial AMR was directly responsible for 1.27 million global deaths in 2019 and contributed to 4.95 million deaths, AMR invalidates the multiple gains that modern medicine has achieved over years, makes infections harder to treat, but also renders other medical procedures and treatments such as surgery, cesarean sections and cancer chemotherapy, much more risky, WHO warns. Infectious diseases specialists and critical-care experts have for long been waving the red flag over AMR, calling for rational prescription of antibiotics, and curbs on the use of drugs to promote growth in animals and plants. It is also clear that there is an antibiotic research and development pipeline crisis, and urgent measures are required to develop new drug candidates, and more equitable access to them. The role of doctors and the government in regulating use of drugs is crucial in this battle, but more so the latter. Patients too are impatient with the medical process, expecting immediate relief to allments; but medical science offers no magical remedy, Ultimately, it is the agency with the heft to do both, establish systems that strictly regulate the use of antimicrobials and promote and fund research on newer antibiotics that will draw the line-between life and death. 

21. ISRO tests fuel cell-based power system in space 

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has successfully tested a 100 W-class Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cell-based Power System (FCPS) in its orbital platform, POEMS, which was launched on board PSLV-CSS on January 1. 
  • The FCPS payload is significant as it has potential applications in India's space station which is proposed to come up by 2035, "During the short-duration test, 180 W power was generated from hydrogen and oxygen gasses stored in high-pressure vessels. It provided a I a wealth of data on the performance of various static and dynamic -systems that formed part of the power system and the physics at play," it said. 

22. Cabinet gives nod to "Prithvi programme for earth observation 

  • The Union Cabinet day cleared a বন্ধু, -crore programme called and (Ear) ham is expected to subsume বীজ বxisting schemes of the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoTS). 
  • These programmes are to improve and increase Ing-term observations of the atmosphere, asphere, ryan sphere, and solid earth to track changes in the planet, develop models to understand and predict weather, ocean and climate hazards, and understand the science of climate change, explore polar and high-sens regions of the earth to discover new phenomena and re sources, develop technology for exploration and sustainable harnessing of oceanic resources for societal applications; and wanslate knowledge and insights from earth system science into services for societal, environmental, and economic benefit. 
  • "A major component of The Ministry is the Deep Ocean Mission or DOM Jane of whose objective is to send a manned submersible 6,000 meters into the Indian Ocean). The Prithvi programme broadly subsumes all of our other major activities," M. Ravichan , Secretary, MORS, Totd The Minds, The DOM was cleared by the Cabinet day of ₹4,000 crore for five years The research and development and operational (services) nottotties of the Ministry are carried out by Its 10 instituines. 
  • They are the India Meteorological Department, the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting, the Centre for Marine Living Resources and Biology, the National Centre for Coastal Research, the National Centre for Seismology, the National Institute of Ocean Technology, the indian National Centre for Ocean Information Service, the National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research, the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, and the National Centre for Earth Science Studies. A fleet of oceanographic and coastal research vessels provide required research support for the schemes. 
  • Satellite for Mauritius The Cabinet also approved an agreement between the Indian Space Research Organisation and the Mauritius Research and Innovation Council to jointly develop a "small satellite." It is expected to cost 20 crore and be ready in 15 months. 

23. Navy thwarts hijacking attempt in Arabian Sea 

  • In a positive end to a hi- jacking attempt in the North Arabian Sea, marine commandos (MAR- COS) of the Indian Navy on Friday evening secured and safely evacuated all 21 crew members, including 15 Indians, from merchant vessel Lila Norfolk. 
  • "Sanitisation by MAR- COS has confirmed the absence of the hijackers. The attempt of hijacking by the pirates was probably abandoned with the forceful warning by the Indian Navy's Maritime Patrol Air-craft (MPA) and interception by Indian Naval warship," the Navy said in a statement.
  • "INS Chennai is in the vicinity of MV and rendering support to restore
  • In the last month of 2023, India responded to three distress calls from ships 
  • Dec 14: Malta flagged vessel m.v. Ruern, with an 18 member crew, sent a mayday message indicating boarding by about sir unknown persons around 700 nautical miles from the Indian coast 
  • Dec 23: m.v. Chem Pluto, with 21 Indian and I Vietnamese crew members, reported a projectile attack around 217 power generation and propulsion, and commenced her voyage to the next port of call." 
  • The bulk carrier Lila Norfolk had sent a message on UKMTO (U.K. Maritime Trade Operations) portal on Thursday evening, when it was 460 nautical miles off the coast of Eyl, Somalia, indicating boarding by approximately five to six unknown armed persons, the Navy said. Responding to the call, the Indian Navy diverted destroyer INS Chennai nautical miles withwest of Porbandar. Initial investigation by the Heavy indicated s drone attack 
  • Dec 23: A Gabon-flagged crude oil tanker floba with an aff Indian cre heading to india was hit by a orte-way attack drone in the Southern Red Seaners were reported which was on anti-piracy patrol in the region while an MPA overflew the vessel in the morning and established contact, ascertaining the safety of the crew. 

24. Discovery of palaeolithic tools adds to understanding of human settlements 

  • The recent floods in the Mulugu district of Telangana has led to a fresh discovery of paleolithic quartzite tools. "The tools or hand axes were found in the sand bed of a stream that dried up after the flood," said Sriramoju Haragopal, who led the team of amateur historians in the effort. The new discovery adds to understanding eti about human habitations in Telangana and central India. 
  • Large parts of Mulugu, Jayashankar Bhupalpally districts in the north-eastern parts of Telangana were flooded in July, 2023 leading to large-scale destruction. "The hand axes were found in the stream between Gurrevula and Bhupatipur village in Mulugu district. The stone ax measuring 15.5cm in length, 11cm in width and 5.5cm in thickness was found by researcher Eleswaram Janardanachari," informed Mr. Haragopal of Kotha Telangana Charitra Brundam. 
  • According to paleontol- ogist Ravi Korisettar, the stone ax belongs to the Lower Palaeolithic period and is about 30 lakh years ago. The Palaeolithic Age is also known as the Old Stone Age or Early Stone Age. It dates back to about 33 lakh years BC. It lasted for 10,000 years. "We identified the tools based on chipping style, the material and the size of tools. Paleolithic hunter gatherers used heavy quartzite and large tools. Similar hand axes as these have been discovered worldwide. The tools were used for cutting wood and killing animals for food," informed Mr. Haragopal. 
  • In 1863, the East India Company's Geological Survey team found a palaeo- lithic site at Attirampak-kam near Madras (present-day Chennai) with bifacial hand-axes made of stone by early humans. The tools are about 15 lakh years old. Paleolithic culture has been labeled as Madras Hand-Axe Industry or Madrasian Culture. 

25. HC permits widow to terminate pregnancy 

  • The Delhi High Court has permitted a widow to terminate her 29-week pregnancy as she is going through "immense trauma" and is showing "suicidal tendencies" after the death of her husband. 
  • The court requested the All India Institute of Medical Sciences to conduct the procedure to terminate her pregnancy though she had crossed the 24-week limit. 
  • The court relied on a 2022 Supreme Court judgment, which held that it is the prerogative of a woman to evaluate her life and arrive at the best course of action in view of a change in her material circumstances. "The right to reproductive choice also includes the right not to procreate," the HC said.

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post