Current Affairs | National | International | SSC | UPSC 12th April 2024

National News 

1. KABIL and CSIR-IMMT sign MoU for Technical and Knowledge cooperation for Critical Minerals 

  • Khanij Bidesh India Limited (KABIL) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research – Institute of Minerals and Materials Technology (CSIR-IMMT) for Technical & Knowledge cooperation for Critical Minerals. 
  • Under the MoU, KABIL will leverage the technical expertise and services of CSIR-IMMT to undertake various projects, including the design and analysis of metallurgical test work plans, development and review of process flowsheets, and the selection of process technologies for mineral processing, beneficiation, and metal extraction. 
  • KABIL is a JV company of three Indian public sector undertakings – National Aluminium Company Limited (NALCO), Hindustan Copper Limited (HCL) and Mineral Exploration and Consultancy Limited (MECL), under the aegis of Ministry of Mines, Government of India. 

Recent MoU 

  • The Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) signed the Master Shipyard Repair Agreement (MSRA) with the United States Navy. 
  • BEML, BEL join hands to develop indigenous train control management system 
  • Mahindra Aerostructures inks $100-million supply contract with Airbus group 
  • IOCL, Panasonic Energy ink pact for lithium-ion cell JV 
  • HPCL and Tata Join Forces to Build Nationwide EV Charging Network 

2. Ministry of Road Transport and Highways to construct 12,349 km of national highways in the year 2023-24 

  • The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways constructed 12,349 km of national highways in the year 2023- 24, the second largest in its history. Earlier, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) had constructed a record 13,327 km of national highways in 2020-21. 
  • The ministry's third best performance was in 2018-19 when it built 10,855 km of national highways. 10,331 km long national highways were constructed in 2022-23 as compared to 10,457 km in 2021-22. In 2019-20, 10,237 km long highways were built. 
  • The official further said that the ministry allotted 8,581 national highway projects in 2023-24. The government has launched a pilot project to provide cashless treatment to road accident victims. Accident victims will be entitled for cashless treatment up to Rs 1.5 lakh, the official said. 

Other Facts 

  • The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has surpassed all its previous records by constructing at least 5,193 km of national highways of four lanes or more in 2023-24. 
  • The ministry built 1,425 km of sixor eight-lane highways – the highest in a year. Similarly, in the four-lane category, the number was 3,768 km, the highest ever. During the last financial year, MoRTH constructed an average of about 34 kilometers of national highways per day, of which 14 kilometers were more than four lanes. 
  • Since 2019-20, the ministry has constructed 56,701 km of national highways. This includes 5,646 km of six/eight lane highways and 15,501 km of four lane highways. The length also includes 13,345 km of road strengthening and 22,210 km of two-lane highways. 

3. GUJCOST designated as Nodal Centre for ISRO’s START programme 

  • The Gujarat Council on Science and Technology (GUJCOST) has been designated as the Nodal Centre for the ‘Space Science and Technology Awareness Training (START) programme by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). 
  • The START programme, a brainchild of ISRO, offers an introductory-level online training platform. 
  • Encompassing a vast spectrum of space science research areas, including planetary exploration, astronomy, heliophysics, atmospheric science, and microgravity research. 
  • Under the START programme, GUJCOST will host live classes, serving as the central hub for knowledge dissemination. Additionally, four Regional Science Centres located in Rajkot, Patan, Bhavnagar, and Bhuj will play a pivotal role in coordinating and facilitating the programme, thereby amplifying its reach across the region. 

About Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) 

  • Founded – 15 August 1969 
  • Headquarters – Bangalore, Karnataka 
  • Founder / 1st Chairman – Vikram Sarabhai 
  • 10th Chairman – S Somanath 
  • Aryabhata India’s first satellites Launched on 19 April 1975 

4. NTPC launches latest edition of Girl Child Empowerment Mission (GEM) 

  • NTPC Limited has launched a new edition of its flagship corporate social responsibility initiative, Girl Child Empowerment Mission (GEM). 
  • This program aligns with the Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao (Save the Girl Child, Educate the Girl Child) campaign launched by the Government of India. 
  • GEM aims to nurture the imaginations of girls. And also, to eliminate gender inequality by promoting their ability to explore opportunities. 
  • Girl Child Empowerment Mission provides a platform for young girls for their all-round development through a month-long workshop during summer vacations. 
  • The new edition of GEM, starting from April 2024, will connect around 3,000 meritorious children from deprived sections of society across 42 identified locations of power sector PSUs. With this, the total number of children benefiting from the mission will exceed 10,000. 

About Girl Child Empowerment Mission (GEM) 

  • Started as a pilot project in 2018 with only three locations and 392 participants. Today this GEM mission has grown into a nationwide movement. 
  • Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021, the program has continued to expand its reach and impact. 
  • So far, a total of 7,424 girls have benefited from it. The number of participants is continuously increasing every year. 
  • In 2023 alone, 2,707 girls participated in workshops across 40 NTPC locations spread across 16 states in India. 
  • The mission focuses on empowering girls through various programs, aiming to identify and nurture their leadership qualities to prepare them for the future. 
  • This year’s workshop focuses on health, hygiene, safety, fitness, sports, and yoga. 
  • The objective is to empower girls to become agents of change, inspiring not only themselves but also their family, community, and the entire country. 

5. India invoked peace clause on rice subsidy in WTO for the fifth consecutive time 

  • India has once again invoked the peace clause at the World Trade Organization (WTO) for the fifth consecutive time, citing rice subsidies exceeding the prescribed limits during the marketing year 2022-23. 
  • India first invoked this clause in 2020 when it became the first country to do so. Despite violating the 10% domestic support limit, India does not face any immediate impact due to the peace clause provision agreed at the 2013 Bali Ministerial Meeting. 
  • India's rice production in 2022-23 was estimated at $52.8 billion, with a total subsidy of $6.39 billion, which was 2% above the 10% domestic support limit. Although this violation is acknowledged, penalties under the peace clause agreement do not apply. 

6. Citroën becomes the first multinational carmaker to export EVs from India 

  • French carmaker Citroën became the first multinational car manufacturer in India to export domestically made electric vehicles to the international market. 
  • Initial shipment of 500 units of the Made-in-India Citroën ë-C3 to Indonesia was ceremonially flagged from Kamarajar Port. 
  • The move aligned with Citroën’s global ambitions of democratising electric mobility to increase the adoption of sustainable and clean modes of transportation. 
  • The ë-C3, crafted with modern design and innovation, offers a 320 km range certified by ARAI MIDC, along with 100 per cent DC Fast Charge and 15 AMP Home Charging options for convenience. It is available in 13 exterior colour combinations and 47 customisation options. 
  • Citroën’s export of the ë-C3 from India not only showcases the company’s manufacturing and engineering prowess but also contributes significantly to India’s goal of a sustainable and globally competitive EV manufacturing ecosystem. 

International News 

7. International Narcotics Control Board appoints India's Jagjit Pavadia for third term 

  • India has been elected to several key bodies at the United Nations, including a significant victory for its nominee Jagjit Pavadia, who was re-elected for a third term to the International Narcotics Control Board after securing the highest number of votes. 
  • Mr. Pavadia was re-elected to the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) by secret ballot for a third term for five years from March 2025-2030, receiving the highest number of votes in the highly competitive election. India is party to 26 bilateral agreements to fight drug trafficking. 
  • Mr. Pavadia has been a member of the International Narcotics Control Board since 2015. He was re-elected by the council in May 2019 for a five-year term from 2020 to 2025. He served as the Chairman of the Board in 2021-2022. 
  • Established in 1968, the INCB is the independent and quasi-judicial monitoring body for the implementation of the United Nations international drug control conventions. It consists of 13 members who are elected by the Economic and Social Council. 

Other appointments 

  • India was also elected to the Commission on the Status of Women for the period 2025–2029; The Executive Board of the United Nations Children's Fund for the period 2025-2027; The Executive Board of the United Nations Development Program and the United Nations Population Fund for 2025-2027 and the United Nations Office for Project Services. 
  • It was also elected to the Executive Board of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women for the 2025–2027 term and to the Executive Board of the World Food Program for the 2025–2027 term. 
  • "India remains steadfast in its commitment to actively engage in discussions within these UN bodies, upholding the principle of 'Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam – the world is one family'," India's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj said in a post on X. " 

8. IPEF to organize Clean Economy Investor Forum in Singapore 

  • The Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) will host its first clean economy investor forum in Singapore on June 5-6. 
  • The IPEF provides a platform for countries in the region to collaborate on advancing resilient, sustainable, and inclusive economic growth. Further, it aims to contribute to cooperation, stability and prosperity in the region. 
  • Launched in May 2022, the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) comprises 14 partners: Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, United States and Vietnam. 
  • The IPEF Clean Economy Investor Forum aims to bring together the region’s top investors, philanthropies, financial institutions, innovative companies, start-ups and entrepreneurs. 
  • The forum will provide opportunities for the Indian industry in two distinct tracks: the Climate Tech Track and the Infrastructure Track. 
  • Under the Climate Tech Track, the forum will identify and acknowledge the top climate tech companies and startups from member countries, showcasing them to global investors. 
  • For the Infrastructure Track, the forum will identify sustainable infrastructure projects. 

9. Sound and stable ties in region's interest: China 

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi's comments about tensions at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) are "highly significant, according to Indian foreign affairs experts. China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) reacted to his remarks on Thursday, calling for India to work with China to "put the bilateral relations forward on a sound and stable track" 
  • In an interview to the US-based magazine Newsweek, published on Wednesday, Mr. Modi had broken his silence on India's ties with China and stand-off at the LAC, which has been going on since April 2020. He had called for the two sides to "urgently address the prolonged situation on our borders so that the abnormality in our bi lateral interactions can be put behind us'’. "I hope and believe that through positive and constructive bilateral engagement at the diplomatic and military levels, we will be able to restore and sustain peace and tranquility in our borders," the PM had added. 
  • 'Common interests' On Thursday, Chinese MFA spokesperson Mao Ning said at a media briefing that Mr. Modi's comments had been "noted" and that "sound and stable China India relations serve the common interests of both sides and are conducive to peace and development of the region and beyond". Ms. Mao added, however, that the boundary question did not "represent the entirety of China-India relations". The PM's comments were "highly significant", according to Pankaj Saran. who was the Deputy National Security Advisor between 2018 and 2021. 
  • "This is an important signal, to China, the US. and to the world at large." he said, indicating that the PM may have been laying the ground to address issues with China as a priority in his third term, if he is re-elected in the upcoming general election. 
  • He also pointed to the changes in China's ties with other global players, including renewed talks with the U.S. and Europe, and closer engagement with Russia, as pertinent. Senior U.S. officials have visited Beijing recently, and Chinese President Xi Jinping is due to visit France next month in his first trip to Europe since 2019. 
  • Mr. Modi has thus far avoided directly referring to China or making any comments in public or in Parliament about the state of ties over the past four years. In addition, his words come in the wake of a number of tougher statements by External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, who has repeatedly accused China of violating its agreements with India by amassing troops at the LAC. 
  • Defence Minister Raj nath Singh has slammed China for renaming places in Arunachal Pradesh, suggesting that India would do the same, and blaming Beijing for "deteriorating ties''. Home Minister Amit Shah had also said that because of India's vigilance, Chinese troops had not been able to take "an inch of Indian territory". 
  • "The PM's remarks reflect the cautious and careful tone adopted by Mr. Modi right since the Gal wan incident," said former Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran. The comments might denote "a signal to China that there is a readiness to re-engage and restore relations," he added. 
  • Speaking to The Hindu, India's former Ambassador to China Ashok Kantha said that it was also important that the PM stressed India's stand that normal ty cy in the relationship would be contingent on restoration of the situation at the border. 
  • Other diplomats said that the PM's comments denoted a "softening of stance", including his comments on the Quad, where he likened the Quad to other groupings that India is a part of. 
  • In her response, Ms. Ning also said that China and India have maintained "close communication" and have made positive progress on the border situation. "We hope that India will work with China, approach the bilateral relations from a strategic height and long-term perspective, keep building trust and engage in dialogue and cooperation," the spokesperson added. (With inputs from Nikhil M. Babu, who is in Beijing at the invitation of the China Public Diplomacy Association) 

State News 

10. Gangaur festival celebrated all over Rajasthan to commemorate the union of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. 

  • Gangaur is an important festival celebrated throughout Rajasthan to commemorate the union of Lord Shiva (Gana) and Goddess Parvati (Gauri). The word “Gana” refers to Lord Shiva, while “Gauri” or “Gaur” represents Goddess Parvati. 
  • Gangaur is celebrated during Chaitra (March–April), the first month of the Hindu calendar, marking the change from winter to spring. Gangaur festival of Rajasthan is an 18-day festival widely celebrated by women. 
  • Women play an important role in the festival by worshiping clay idols of Gana and Gauri in their homes. Unmarried girls seek blessings to get a good husband, while married women pray for the well-being and longevity of their husbands. 
  • During the first day of Chaitra month, a puja ceremony begins which ends with the Gangaur festival on the 18th day, which is celebrated with great religious enthusiasm. On the eve of Gangaur festival, women decorate their palms and fingers with henna. In Jaipur, a traditional procession of Gangaur starts from the Jananideodhi of the City Palace, passing through various sites before reaching Talkatora. 
  • Udaipur has a dedicated ghat called Gangaur Ghat or Gangori Ghat, located on the banks of Lake Pichola, which serves as a major venue for festival celebrations. 
  • "Pink Gangaur" is celebrated on Chaitra Shukla Panchami in Nathdwara, Rajasthan. Gangaur is celebrated in Jaisalmer without the idol of Isar. 

11. Kannada poetess Mamta Sagar wins ‘WOW’ International Literary Award 

  • Mamataji Sagar, a Bengaluru, Karnataka-based Kannada poet, writer, academic and activist has recently won the World Literary Award from the World Organization of Writers (WOW) for her contribution to the world of literature. 
  • Dr Sagar, Facilitator, Srishti Manipal Institute of Art, Design and Technology, known for his involvement in transdisciplinary creative writing and diverse forms of cultural industries, received the award at a ceremony in Abuja, Nigeria on 6 April 2024. 
  • Apart from this award, Dr. Sagar, who has always been actively engaged in community-based projects focusing on poetry, has also been awarded the LIFFT Award, Gold Medal and Diploma for his outstanding achievements in the field of literature. Topics she has addressed in her work over the years include identity politics, feminism, and cultural diversity. 
  • Sagar produced three films, Interversions 1,2 and 3, based on his poetry collections, with Srishti Films as part of the Wales-India Collaborative Projects (2018). She has also written and produced For Gauri, a video presentation of her poetry written for late journalistactivist Gauri Lankesh. 

Defence News 

12. No shortage of capital funds due to consolidated budget of 3 Services’ 

  • There will be no shortage of capital funds for the Indian Air Force (IAF) because of consolidation of the demand of three Services in the defense budget for 2024-25, the IAF has said. Funds sought for 2024-25 have already been allotted to the Services. 
  • Prior to February 2024, capital funds had been allocated separately to the Army, the Navy and the Air Force. 
  • "The Integrated Capability Development Programme, which is a 10-year plan, would be finalized by headquarters Integrated Defence Staff (IDS) and approved by the government. This would be prepared after taking inputs from the service headquarters. The Chief of Defence Staff would provide further inputs to the government after consulting the Service Chiefs," the IAF said in a written reply to questions from The Hindu. 
  • In the interim Budget presented in February, the government decided to consolidate the capital allocation for the three Services based on similar items of expenditure such as land, aircraft and aero engines, and heavy and medium vehicles. This mechanism will also expedite decision-making and ensure better utilization of the capital budget, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) had stated earlier. 
  • The government has consolidated the demand of the three services in the defense budget to bring flexibility in financial management by enabling the MOD to reappropriate funds among the services, keeping in view the inter-Services priority, the IAF said. 
  • The total allocation for defense stands at ₹6.2 lakh crore for 2024-25 of which the capital allocation, which is for new procurements, stands at ₹1.72 lakh crore. Of the ₹6.2 lakh crore, 27.67% went to capital, 14.82% for revenue expenditure on sustenance and operational preparedness, 30.68% for pay and allowances, 22.72% for defense pensions and 4.11% for civil organizations under the MoD. 
  • Officials noted that the consolidation of the capital budget would help better address this issue. Awards 

13. Indian-American golfer Akshay Bhatia won the title of ‘Valero Texas Open’ 

  • Indian American golfer Akshay Bhatia performed brilliantly in the play-offs and won the Valero Texas Open title on April 8, 2024. With this, Akshay Bhatia has made a place in the Augusta Masters to be held next month in May 2024. 
  • By winning the Valero Texas Open title, Akshay Bhatia has qualified for a major tournament for the first time. Bhatia overcame Danny McCarthy in the play-off, who birdied eight of his last nine holes. 
  • McCarthy has already secured a Masters berth in 2024 by breaking into the world top 50. McCarthy lost in a playoff to Viktor Hovland at last year's Memorial Tournament. 
  • The win earned Bhatia US$1.6 million and over 500 FedEx. Bhatia also qualified for the US Open with his second PGA Tour win. Bhatia has now reached number 34 in the world. 

14. Gagandeep Kang awarded for work on 2 enteric diseases in children 

  • India’s Dr Gagandeep Kang has been awarded the 2024 John Dirks Canada Gairdner Global Health Award for her achievements in global health research. 
  • This was part of the Gairdner Foundation’s announcement of its 2024 Canada Gairdner Award winners, that recognised some of the world’s most significant biomedical and global health research and discoveries. 
  • Dr Kang was awarded for “extensive cohort-based epidemiological, environmental and clinical trial research on enteric diseases in children and their effects on life course, with significant impact on vaccine development and health policy in India and internationally. 
  • Dr Kang is Adjunct Professor, Christian Medical College, (Vellore) and Director, Enteric, Diagnostics, Genomics and Epidemiology, with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 

Recent Awards 

  • John L “Jack” Swigert, Jr Award 2024 – ISRO (for Chandrayaan -3) 
  • Best Scientific Poster Award’ 2024 – Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital 
  • “Medal of Honour” at Consular Day 2024 – Neeraj A Sharma 
  • “On The Spot Unit Citation” for anti-piracy ops by Navy Chief – INS Sharda 
  • American Surgical Association (ASA) Fellowship – Dr Raghu Ram 

15. In a first in 40 years, Indian film to compete for Cannes award 

  • Indian filmmaker Payal Kapadia's All We Imagine As Light on Thursday scripted history by becoming the first Indian movie in over 40 years to feature in the prestigious Competition section of the Cannes Film Festival, where it will vie for the top prize Palme d'Or. 
  • Iris Knobloch, president of the Cannes Festival, and Thierry Fremaux, general delegate, announced the official selection line-up for the 2024 edition of the gala at a press conference streamed live from Cannes, France. 
  • Besides Ms. Kapadia, British-Indian filmmaker Sandhya Suri's Santosh will also be showcased at the 77th edition of the film gala. The movie will be screened under the Un Certain Regard section. 
  • Ms. Kapadia's All We Imagine As Light will be presented under the main segment alongside 19 other titles. 
  • An alumna of the Film & Television Institute of India (FTII), Ms. Kapadia is best known for her acclaimed documentary A Night of Knowing Nothing, which premiered at the 2021 
  • Cannes Film Festival's Director's Fortnight side-bar where it won the Oeil d'or (Golden Eye) award. 
  • All We Imagine As Light, also written by Ms. Kapadia, marks her narrative feature debut. 
  • The film is about Prabha, a nurse, who receives an unexpected gift from her long-estranged husband that throws her life into disarray. Her younger roommate, Anu, tries in vain to find a private spot in the big city to be alone with her boyfriend. 
  • One day the two nurses go on a road trip to a beach town where the mystical forest becomes a space for their dreams to manifest, according to the plotline. 
  • The previous Indian film to compete for the coveted Palme d'Or award was legendary filmmaker Mrinal Sen's Kharij in 1983. 

Ranks & Report News 

16. Most Indians believe in plurality: survey 

  • An overwhelming number, 79% of those surveyed in the CSDS-Lokniti poll aver that "India belongs to all religions equally, not just Hindus", with only 11% saying that "India belongs only to Hindus". This belief in plurality was more pronounced in urban areas (85% in towns and 84% in cities) and higher among the educated (83%) as compared to those with no schooling (72%). 
  • Yet, while only 8% of the respondents said the Ram Mandir was their most important concern, 22% of them mentioned this as the "most liked action" of the BJP-led government. Forty-eight percent of the respondents also expressed the belief that the construction of the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya will consolidate Hindu identity. 
  • The survey also revealed that 58% of the respondents expressed some or great distrust in the Election Commission. Nearly 45% suggested the likelihood that electronic voting machines could be manipulated by the ruling party, a lot or somewhat. 

17. According to Carbon Majors report, Saudi Aramco is the world's top greenhouse gas emitter since 2016. 

  • The non-profit think tank's Carbon Majors report states, "From 2016 to 2022, 57 entities including nationstates, state-owned firms, and investor-owned companies will emit 80% of the world's CO2 from fossil fuels and cement production." 
  • "The world's top three CO2 emitting companies over this period were state-owned oil company Saudi Aramco, Russia's state-owned energy giant Gazprom and India's state-owned producer Coal India," the report said. 
  • The report found that most companies have expanded their fossil fuel production since 2015, the year almost all countries signed the UN Paris Agreement to take action to curb climate change. 
  • Since then, while many governments and companies have set tougher emissions targets and rapidly expanded renewable energy, they have also produced and burned more fossil fuels, leading to increased emissions. "Global energy-related CO2 emissions reached a record high last year," the International Energy Agency said. 

Carbon measures report 

  • The database was first launched in 2013 by the non-profit research organization Climate Accountability Institute. It combines companies' self-reported data on coal, oil and gas production with sources such as the U.S. Energy Information Administration, national mining associations, and other industry data. 
  • The report used the Carbon Measures database for fossil fuel data from the top 122 oil, gas, coal, cement producers. The Carbon Measurement Database was founded in 2013 by Richard Heed of the Climate Accountability Institute. 

Science & Technology News 

18. Dr Reddy’s launches migraine management wearable device ‘Nerivio’ 

  • Dr Reddy’s Laboratories has launched the drug-free, non-invasive migraine management wearable device ‘Nerivio’ in Germany through its step-down subsidiary, betapharm. 
  • The launch marks the company’s entry into digital therapeutics in Europe. 
  • Nerivio is approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) and is CE-mark certified in Europe. 
  • Nerivio was presented in 2023 by Dr Reddy’s at the DGN Kongress organised by the German Association of Neurology in Berlin and the 17th European Headache Congress held in Barcelona, Spain. 
  • Last year, Dr. Reddy’s entered into an exclusive agreement with Theranica, a prescribed digital therapeutics company developing advanced neuromodulation devices for migraine and other pain conditions, to distribute and market Nerivio® in multiple markets. 
  • Migraine is a global health challenge, affecting around 30% of adults on 15 or more days per month, impacting 1.7% to 4% of the population. 

19. ISRO'S 'zero orbital debris' milestone 

  • The Organisation 15 ROI has said that PSLV-CSK/XParintedon has practically left eero debris in earth orbit. The space agency explained that the last stage of the Polar Satellite Launch vehicle (PSLV) used in the mission was transformed into a kind of orbital station-called the PSLV Orbital Experimental Module 3 (POEM-31- before it was left to re-enter the earth's atmosphere instead of floating in orbit once its mission was completed. ISRO said that after it completed the primary mission of injecting all s*tellites into their target orbits, the fourth stage of the PSLV was transformed into the POEM-3. It was subsequently de-orbited from 650 km to Amrendere more susceptible A being pulled town ents the earth and burning up at the atmosphere 15RO ale said it passmated the stage, meaning dumped as fuel, to avoid an explosion that could have thrown small pieces of debris into orbit. 
  • Developed by the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) as an inexpensive space platform, POEM uses the spent fourth stage of a PSLV rocket as an orbital platform. Used for the first time in the PSLV-CS3 mission in June 2022, ISRO had POEM orbit the earth to perform in-orbit scientific experiments with various payloads onboard. 
  • POEM is powered by solar panels mounted on the fuel tank of the rocket's fourth stage and a lithium-ion battery. It has a navigation, guidance, and control (NGC) system to stabilize its altitude along with hellum control thrusters. The NGC system has four Sun sensors, a magnetometer, and gyroscopes, and talks to ISRO's NavIC satellite constellation for navigation. POEM also has a telecommand system to communicate with the ground station 
  • ISRD first demonstrated the rise of the spent fourth stage of its socket PSLV C-44 macionis 2010 Añer satellites were injected in the target orbits, the Fourth stage, carrying a student sayload called Kalamar 2. was moved to a higher circular orbit of 443 km and stayed there, facilitating the payload's requirements 25 
  • ISRO launched the PSLV C-58 mission from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota on January 1 After deploying the XPosat satellite in its desired orbit of 650 km, the fourth stage, now called POEM-3, was lowered to a 350-kan-high circular orbit. The lower a satellite is in orbit around the earth, the more drag it experiences and the more energy it needs to expand to stay in orbit. POEM-3 featured nine payloads: two each from VSSC and Bellatrix Aerospace Pvt Ltd, one each from the start-ups TakeMe2Space, Inspecity Space Labs Pvt Ltd., Dhruva Space, and from LBS Institute of Technology, KJ Somaiya Institute of Technology, and ISRO's Physics Research Laboratory, 
  • Ahmedabad. It completed 400 orbits around the explosion as a result of anti-satellite moodle tests. This debris often flies around at high speeds of up to 27,000 km/lu. Due to their sheer volume and momentum, they poses risotto several space assets, 
  • The LED cuenda from 100 km above the earth's surface up to 2000 km above. It includes satellites tracking intelligence data, encrypted communication, and navigation According to ISRO's Space Situational Assessment Repeat 2022, the world placed 2.533 objects in space in 179 launches in 2022 Debris also exists, but in smaller volumes, in the geosynchronous orbit (GED) 36,000 km above the earth's surface. Currently, 7,000 operational satellites are orbiting the earth at different altitudes along with millions of pieces of space debris. 
  • The US Space Command tracks and catalogs space debris larger than 10 centimeters in LED and larger than 0.3.1 meters in CEO, earth by its 25th days 
  • The portesdy were Operminalisest to perform shes experiments at the ARKA200 RUDRA, and LEAF TD completed their respective experiments while the dats from WeSAT, RSEM, and DEX were collected after every orbit for further analysis on the ground. Two fuel cellis from VSSC demonstrated their ability to generate power, By January 27, 2024 of POEM-3's payload objectives were completed. 
  • For two months, POEM-3 prepared for its re-entry while ISRO tracked it with its Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network statiotus in Bengaluru, Lucknow, Mauritius, Sriharikota, Port Blair, Thiruvananthapuram, Brusel, und Biak (Indonesia) and the Multi-Object Tracking Radar (MUTR) at Sriharikota. On March 21, POEM-3 re-entered the earth's atmosphere, meeting its fiery end. 
  • With the rise in the number of satellites in orbit around the earth, space debris has become a pressing issue. Space debris in the low earth orbit (LEO) mainly comprises pieces of spacecraft, rockets, and defunct satellites, and the fragments of objects that have deteriorated debris. 
  • The latest incident of space debris camint baroc was recorded on March is when a discarded battery pallet dropped by the International Space Station ripped through the roof of a house in Florida As more communication satellites/constellations are launched and more anti-satellite tests are conducted, more on-orbit breakup and collisions occur, producing smaller fragments in orbit. The member of space objects (debris or functional equipment) greater than 10 cm in size in LED is expected to be about 60,000 by 2030, per ISRO estimates. Space debris can also create unusable regions of the orbit where too much debris has accumulated, and which can trigger a cascading avalanche of collisions that produce yet more, but smaller pieces of, debris Currently, there are no international space laws pertaining to LEO debris. Most spacefaring nations abide by the Space Debris Mitigation Guidelines 2002 specified by the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee (ADC), which the U.N. endorsed in 2007 

20. Earth's largest digital camera 'LSST' will be installed in Chile's Vera C Rubin Observatory. 

  • Scientists are on the verge of discovering one of the universe's greatest mysteries using a powerful new instrument, the Legacy Survey of Space and Time (LSST) camera. 
  • This camera, built by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory in the United States and funded by the US Department of Energy's Office of Science, boasts a recordbreaking 3,200 megapixels. 
  • It will be installed in May 2024 at the Vera C. Rubin Observatory located in a remote area of Chile. 
  • It is designed to capture unprecedented detail of the universe and shed light on the elusive dark matter and dark energy that, despite comprising most of the universe's mass, remain invisible to current instruments. 
  • Dark energy, another theoretical entity, is believed to be accelerating the expansion of the universe. These astronomical heavyweight weighs 3 tons and boasts the highest resolution ever achieved for a space camera. 


  • It has three huge lenses, the largest of which is over 5 feet in diameter, and can capture extremely sharp images. The LSST camera will rapidly switch lenses and take 15-second exposures to effectively survey large areas of the night sky. 
  • Scientists will be able to customize the camera's view using six special filters, allowing them to analyze different light spectrums, including near-infrared, ultraviolet and visible light. This versatility will provide a comprehensive dataset for astronomers. 

Sports News

21. Rashmi Kumari wins national women’s carrom title 

  • Three-time World Champion Rashmi Kumari beat K Nagajothi 25-8, 14-20, 25-20 in the women’s final of the 51st National carrom championship organized by the Madhya Pradesh Carrom Association. 
  • It was a record 12th national women’s singles title for Rashmi, employed as the Chief Manager at the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC). 
  • The men’s title was bagged by K Srinivas as he beat S Aditya 25-0, 19-6 in the final. It was the fourth national men’s singles title for Srinivas who was brilliant in the tournament, executing seven white slams. 
  • The championship, sponsored by the Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) and SYNCO carrom company, had 237 men and 174 women participants from 12 institutions and 27 States. 

Important day 

22. 11 April- National Submarine Day 

  • National Submarine Day is observed every year on 11 April. 
  • This day is significant as it marks the beginning of the modern submarine era. The day also serves as a reminder of the contributions made by submarines to the nation’s defence and security. 
  • The first modern commissioned submarine, the USS Holland VI, was purchased by the United States Navy in 1900. It was later commissioned on 12 October 1900, and remained in service for almost a decade.


23. 12 April – International Day of Human Space Flight 

  • The International Day of Human Space Flight is commemorated every year on April 12 to mark the beginning of the space era for mankind. 
  • The day is celebrated to honour the first person, Yuri Gagarin, to go to space. 
  • The United Nations General Assembly, on April 7, 2011, passed a resolution to establish the International Day of Human Space Flight on a particular day every year. 
  • On October 4, 1957, a human-made satellite named, Sputnik I, was sent to space. This was the first ever human effort to explore space. 
  • After understanding the technologies, on April 12, 1961, Yuri Gagarin from the Soviet Union became first human to travel around the earth in space.
  • On June 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong became the first person on Earth to set foot on Moon. 

24. 12 April – International Day for Street Children 

  • The International Day for Street Children is observed on April 12 every year. 
  • The day is dedicated to raising awareness about the plight of street children and to promoting their inclusion and well-being. 
  • Street children are defined as children under the age of 18 who live on the streets or in makeshift camps and are not given adequate protection or supervision. 
  • They often experience hunger, homelessness, and violence and face various social and environmental challenges. Street children are also more likely to drop out of school and engage in illegal activities. 
  • The history of the International Day for Street Children dates back to 1989, when the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child was adopted. 

Obituary News

25. British physicist Peter Higgs passes away 

  • British physicist Peter Higgs died at the age of 94. 
  • Peter Higgs gained fame for the discovery of ‘Higgs-Boson Particle’ i.e. ‘God Particle’. 
  • Under ‘God Particle’ it was helped to explain how the universe was created after the Big Bang. 
  • Peter Higgs showed how bosons hold the universe together. Peter Higgs was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2013 for this discovery. 
  • Higgs received several prestigious awards for his contributions to theoretical physics, including the Dirac Medal in 1997 and the Wolff Prize in Physics in 2004.

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