Current Affairs | National | International | SSC | UPSC 19th April 2024

National News 

1.Hindustan Zinc becomes 3rd largest silver producer globally 

  • Vedanta group firm Hindustan Zinc has become the third largest producer of silver globally. 
  • As per a survey, its Sindesar Khurd Mine in Rajasthan now stands as the world’s second largest silver-producing mine, moving up from last year’s fourth spot. 
  • Silver plays a pivotal role in the global energy transition and Hindustan Zinc’s production growth of 5 per cent year-on-year is attributed to increased ore production and enhanced grades, reinforcing its status as a key player in the global silver market. 

International News 

2. Severe flood in UAE due to artificial rain 

  • The United Arab Emirates has been hit by unprecedented rainfall, with more rainfall in the past few days than it usually receives in a year. Official figures show that some areas received at least 200 mm of rain, twice the country's average annual rainfall. The highest amount was 259.5 mm recorded in Khatam Al Shaqla, Al Ain. 
  • According to expert meteorologist Ahmed Habib, the Gulf state's National Meteorological Center sent seeding aircraft from Al Ain Airport to take advantage of convective cloud formations. 
  • That technique involves injecting chemicals and small particles – often natural salts like potassium chloride – into the atmosphere to make clouds produce more rain. 
  • The seeding method involves producing more precipitation by launching salt flames or other small materials into the clouds. These flares, mounted on the wings of aircraft, contain components of salt material. 
  • The Gulf country's artificial rainfall program was promoted by collaborative scientific and technological research with the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Colorado, United States, the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa, and NASA. 
  • The United Arab Emirates began cloud seeding operations in the 2000s to address water security issues. 
  • Meanwhile, heavy rains continue in Oman, killing at least 19 people in northern Al Sharqiyah and Edam. Heavy rain also occurred in Bahrain, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. 

Cloud seeding 

  • For this, silver iodide or solid carbon dioxide is spread along with the flow of clouds using planes. The aircraft is equipped with two burners or generators of silver iodide, in which silver iodide solution is filled with high pressure. 
  • Where rain is to be caused, it is sprayed in the opposite direction of the wind. 

3. ‘Biscuit Jatra Festival’ organized in Nepal 

  • Biscuit Jatra is an eight-day festival that culminates with a huge celebration in Bhaktapur district of Nepal. Thousands of people gathered at Bhaktapur Durbar Square to witness this celebration. 
  • People pulled the chariots of Bhairava and Bhadra Kali in opposite directions in the streets of the city. Biscuit Jatra marks the beginning of the new year on the Bikram Sambat calendar. According to a legend, it is a festival marking the death of a serpent. 
  • It is celebrated in many regions of Nepal, but the most vivid celebration is held in Bhaktapur, an ancient Newa city in the eastern part of the Kathmandu Valley, about 15 km from the capital. The celebrations usually start at Bhaktapur Durbar Square in Bhaktapur. 
  • One of the most exciting events is a huge tug of war between the upper and lower reaches of the city. You will see a huge chariot with an idol of Lord Bhairava or Bhairab on top of it being carried by hundreds of devotees to Khalla Tola. The chariot war is taking place here. 
  • The collision of chariots representing male and female deities, Bhairab and Bhadrakali symbolizes the completeness and fertility of the ritual. 
  • On the second day of the New Year, people celebrate Sindoor Jatra Festival. A tongue piercing ceremony is held in Bode town, followed by a huge procession. 
  • On this day, children also give sweets, fruits and gifts to their mothers to show their love and gratitude. Adults whose mothers have died go to the Mata shrine west of Kathmandu to take a dip in the water and make offerings in honor of their deceased mothers. 

4. European Space Agency's 'Proba-3 Mission' to study the Sun will be launched by ISRO 

  • India's ISRO will launch the European Space Agency (ESA)'s 'Proba-3 mission' in September 2024 on its PSLV-XL rocket. In the Proba-3 mission, two satellites will together form a 144 meter long instrument which will be known as Solar Coronagraph. 
  • This will help scientists study the Sun's corona, which is difficult to observe due to the brightness of the solar disk. 
  • The Proba-3 mission aims to overcome this challenge by using an artificial eclipse in space, providing an unprecedented view of the corona closer to the solar rim than ever before. 
  • The success of the mission depends on the precise positioning and coordination of the two spacecraft. To achieve this, the European Space Agency (ESA) has developed innovative technologies, including precision cold gas thrusters and vision-based detection systems. 
  • These technologies will enable satellites to maintain their relative positions with millimeter-scale accuracy. The Proba-3 mission also serves as a test bed for future multi-satellite missions, which can operate as single virtual formations. 
  • It is for the more complex and rich space stakeholders that Earth's theories, principles and analogies involve radical changes in our approach. 
  • This collaboration between ESA and ISRO reflects a growing trend of international partnerships in space exploration, pooling resources and expertise to push the boundaries of what is possible. 
  • India sent a solar mission Aditya-L1 into space on September 2, 2023. It took approximately 127 days to reach its final destination and traveled approximately 1.5 million kilometres. 

5. USA will conduct war exercise 'Mission Victus Hedge' for the first time in space 

  • To prepare for possible wars outside the Earth, the US Army will soon conduct the first-ever space orbit war exercise 'Mission Victus Hedge' under the leadership of Space Systems Command (SSC). 
  • Its goal is to prepare the US military for any war outside Earth. Two commercial space businesses have signed contracts with the Space Force for the 'Victus Hedge' mission, which is due to expire in late 2025, SSC reported. 
  • As part of the mission 'Victus Hedge', the command has a contract with Rocket Lab National Security and True Anomaly for the supply of spacecraft capable of operating the stations.
  • These two spacecraft will be 'The Jackal' from the True Anomaly and an unidentified Rocket Lab craft. These will demonstrate that in a real-world operational setting, the U.S. Space Force can respond appropriately to any suspicious activity in space. 
  • According to the Space Force statement, Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) has given a contract worth Rs 2.67 crore to Rocket Lab National Security. Apart from this, a total of Rs 50 crore will be required for the mission, half of which will be provided by the US government and the other half by True Anomaly. 
  • This historic mission strengthens defenses against any space-based attack and represents a major advance. The U.S. Space Force's preparedness to face new threats in space sends a strong message of determination and reaffirms the nation's commitment to maintaining peace and stability at the highest levels. 

Defence News 

6. DRDO and Indian Army successfully test indigenous 'MPATGM' in Pokaran, Rajasthan 

  • The Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and the Indian Army test-fired the indigenously developed ManPortable Anti-Tank Guided Missile (MPATGM) weapon system at the Pokhran Field Firing Range in Rajasthan on April 13, 2024. MPATGM weapon system has been designed and developed by DRDO.
  • The first test of MPATGM Tandem Warhead System has been successfully completed. The weapon system is capable of day and night operations. It has been found capable of defeating modern armor protected main battle tanks. Defense Minister Rajnath Singh praised DRDO and the Indian Army for the successful trials of the MPATGM system. 
  • The MPATG system was tested several times in various flight setups to demonstrate improved technology. The ministry said that the missile performance and warhead performance in this test were found to be remarkable.

7.Indigenous Technology Cruise Missile (ITCM) 

  • Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) successfully flight tested the Indigenous Technology Cruise Missile (ITCM) from the Integrated Test Range (ITR), Chandipur off the coast of Odisha on April 18, 2024. 
  • The performance of the missile was monitored by multiple range sensors such as radar, Electro Optical Tracking System (EOTS) and telemetry deployed at various locations by the ITR to ensure complete coverage of the flight path. The flight of the missile was also monitored by Su-30-Mk-I aircraft of the Indian Air Force. 
  • The missile followed the desired path using way point navigation and performed very low altitude sea-skimming flight. This successful flight test has also established the reliable performance of the indigenous propulsion system developed by Gas Turbine Research Establishment (GTRE), Bengaluru. 
  • The missile is also equipped with advanced avionics and software to ensure better and reliable performance. Which has been developed by Bengaluru-based DRDO Laboratory Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE). 
  • The successful development of indigenous long-range subsonic cruise missile powered by indigenous propulsion is a major milestone for Indian Defense R&D. 

8.Vice-Admiral Tripathi to be next Navy chief 

  • Vice-Admiral Dinesh Ku- mar Tripathi has been ap- pointed the next Chief of the Naval Staff. He is cur- rently the Vice-Chief of the Navy and will take over on superannuation of the current Chief, Admiral R. Hari Kumar on April 30. 
  • "The Government has appointed Vice-Admiral Di- nesh Kumar Tripathi pre- sently serving as Vice-Chief of the Staff (VCNS) as the next Chief of the Naval Staff with effect from the afternoon of 30th April 2024," a government state- ment issued almost at mid- night on Thursday said.
  • Born on May 15, 1964, Vice-Admiral Tripathi was commissioned on July 1, 1985, into the Executive Branch of the Indian Navy. A Communication and Electronic Warfare specialist, he has had a long and distinguished service spanning nearly 39 years, the statement said. 

9. DRDO inaugurates sonar system test and evaluation center ‘SPACE’ in Kerala 

  • Dr. Sameer V Kamat, Secretary, Department of Defense (R&D) and Chairman, DRDO, inaugurated a state-of-the-art Submersible Platform for Acoustic Characterization and Evaluation (SPACE) at the Underwater Acoustic Research Facility, Kulamavu, in Idukki, Kerala on 17 April 2024. 
  • The space, established by DRDO's Naval Physical and Oceanographic Laboratory, has been designed as a major test and evaluation center for sonar systems destined for the Indian Navy on various platforms including ships, submarines and helicopters. 
  • SPACE is a milestone in Navy technology advancement. It will consist of two different combinations – a platform that floats on the surface of the water, and a submersible platform that can be lowered to any depth up to 100 meters using a winch system. 
  • Upon completion of operations, the submersible platform can be winched up and docked with the floating platform. 
  • The space will be used primarily for evaluation of the entire sonar system, allowing quick deployment and easy retrieval of scientific packages such as sensors and transducers. 
  • It will be suitable for survey, sampling and data collection of air, surface, mid water and reservoir bottom parameters using modern scientific instruments. It will meet the needs of data processing and sample analysis in modern, wellequipped scientific laboratories, ushering in a new era of anti submarine warfare research capabilities. 

Ranks & Reports News 

10. Indian actress Alia Bhatt included in Time's 100 most influential people list 

  • Time magazine has released the list of the 100 most influential personalities in the world on 17 April 2024. Along with many wellknown personalities of the world, many famous personalities of India were also included in this list. 
  • Actress Alia Bhatt and wrestler Sakshi Malik from India are prominently involved in this. Yulia Navalnaya, wife of late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, has also been included in this list. 
  • This time, 15 artists, 15 titans, 16 icons, 24 leaders, 15 innovators and 15 pioneers have been included in Time magazine.
  • Many people of Indian origin have also been included in this list of Time. In which the names of World Bank President Ajay Banga, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and actor-director Dev Patel are prominently included. 
  • TIME's list also includes Jigar Shah, director of the U.S. Energy Loan Program Office. Priyamvada Natarajan, professor of astronomy and physics at Yale University, is also involved. Apart from these, Indian origin restaurant owner Asma Khan has also been included. 

Prominent indian 

  • Writer, director and filmmaker Tom Harper described Alia Bhatt as 'Adbhutpuri'. It is written in her profile that she is one of the top actresses in the world. Alia has worked with 'Tom Harper' for the first time in his Hollywood film 'Heart of Stone'. 
  • Sakshi had launched a campaign against sexual exploitation in wrestling against Brijbhushan Singh, this fight of Sakshi has been mentioned in Time magazine. 
  • Ajay Banga was born on 10 November 1959 in Pune. His father Harbhajan Singh Banga was a Lieutenant General in the Indian Army. Last year, he assumed the post of President of the World Bank on June 2, 2023. With this he became the first black person to chair two global financial institutions, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). 
  • Satya Nadella, born in Hyderabad, became the CEO of Microsoft in February 2014. Satya Nadella has done engineering from Manipal Institute of Technology. Nadella has a major contribution in making Microsoft the largest company in the world. 
  • Dev Patel became famous in the world in 2008 with Danny Boyle's film Slumdog Millionaire. This film won 8 Oscar Awards. Dev received an Oscar nomination for the 2016 film Lion. 

11.'Nestle baby food sold in India has higher sugar content 

  • Nestle's baby food products sold in India, as well as in African and Latin American countries, have higher sugar content, in comparison to the same products sold in European markets, according to a report released recently by a Swiss NGO, the Public Eye and International Baby Food Action Network (IIB- FANI 
  • Around 150 baby pro- ducts manufactured by the global food and beverage giant and sold in different countries were tested in a Belgian laboratory, according to IBFAN. 
  • It was found that all 15 Cerelac products for six-month-old babies, which are sold without any added sugars in the United Kingdom and Germany, contained 2.7 grams of added sugar per serving in India. Products sold in Ethiopia and Thailand contained nearly 6 grams, the report said. 
  • Cutting back on sugar Despite World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations against added sugar in foods meant for children under the age of three, Indian regulators do a limited amount of sucrose and fructose in baby food. 
  • However, a Nestle India spokesperson responded to the allegations on Thursday, saying that the reduction of added sugars is a priority for the company Over the last five years, added sugars have been reduced by up to 30% in its infant cereal products, the company said. 
  • These products are manufactured to ensure the appropriate delivery of nutritional requirements such as protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and iron for early childhood, Nestle India said. 
  • "We never compromise and will never compromise on the nutritional quality of our products. We constantly leverage our extensive Global Research and Development network to enhance the nutritional profile of our products. Compliance is an essential characteristic of Nestle In- and we will never compromise on that. We also ensure that our products manufactured in India are in full and strict com- pliance with CODEX standards (a commission established by WHO and the food agriculture organisation) and local specifications [as required) pertaining to the requirements of all nutrients including added sugars," it said. 
  • The company also added: "We regularly review our portfolio and continue to innovate and formulate our products to furth- er reduce the level of ad- ded sugars, without compromising on nutrition, quality, safety, and taste. 
  • "The Food Safety and Standards Authority of In- dia, which regulates the manufacture, storage, distribution, sale, and import of food articles, while also establishing standards to ensure food safety, said that it is looking into the IB- FAN report. Arun Gupta from the Breastfeeding Promotion Network of India (BPND said that children below the age of two should not be given any additional sugar or salt in their diet. "This predisposes them to non-communicable diseases, the burden of which is growing in India. 
  • Our own government surveys have warned of the growing obesity volume among children," he said. The WHO has warned that the introduction of added sugar in baby foods can contribute to the development of addictive eat- ing habits and a preference for sweet tastes from an early age.'Double standards' Hematologist Cyriac AbbyPhilips, who debunks medical misinformation on social media under the moniker The Liver Doc, accused Nestle of "double standards" on X. 
  • "Nestle baby food - Cerelac has global retail sales of above one billion U.S. dollars. The highest figures are in low- and middle-in- come countries, with 40% of sales just in Brazil and India," he said.``Nestle has double standards for the Western market compared to the Asian market," he added.

12. Pale green shoots 

  • India's merchandise exports hit a 12-month peak of $41.7 billion last month, marginally lower than March 2023 and a tad higher than February's $41.4 billion figure. Imports fell 6% to $57.3 billion, taking the trade deficit to an 11-month low. The last two months' robust export numbers bolstered the tally for outbound shipments from $354 billion at the end of January to $437.1 billion for the full year, just 3% short of the record $451 billion performance in 2022-23. 
  • Amid a decline in commodity prices, which averaged about 14% lower last year, this is a commendable outcome, aided by demand proving more resilient than earlier anticipated in major markets. That imports dipped at a higher 4.8% pace has al- so cushioned the trade deficit, and economists now expect the January-March quarter to end up with a small but rare current account surplus. 
  • Services trade data for the full year will be available later, but the Commerce Ministry estimates that total exports in 2023-24 were fractionally higher than the previous year at $776.7 billion. 
  • Trade mandarins believe goods exports have entered a positive growth cycle, having coped with persistent strife - from Ukraine to Palestine and the Red Sea. Last week, the World Trade Organization (WTO) downgraded its global trade volume growth projection to 2.6% from 3.3% reckoned earlier, with risks tilted towards the downside. 
  • This is despite favourable base effects from its revision for 2023 trade volumes, which the WTO says tanked 1.2% compared with a 0.8% dip expected earlier. Export volumes from Asia are expected to rise 3.4% in 2024, with imports climbing 5.6%. In India, a healthy monsoon is expected to spur domestic demand, including for discretionary imports. 
  • But sustained disruptions on two of the world's key shipping routes - the Suez and Panama Canals - along with geopoliti- cal fault lines and an increasing scepticism about the benefits of global trade in several countries, pose creeping risks that have not fully manifested yet. 
  • Exporters do not seem so sure about the up- beat official - they need to start raising prices soon to catch up with shipping cost surges, exposing them to competitive pressures. For Asia and India, any prolonged friction in the Strait of Hormuz, a key supply route for the region's oil and gas imports, is the biggest threat to trade and macroeconomic balances. 
  • The spike in crude prices already showed up in March as the petro- leum trade deficit hit a record monthly high of $11.8 billion while oil exports slid to an eight- month low. India's high energy import depen- dence is known, and any spurt in global energy and food prices would also derail hopes of global interest rate cuts and improved demand. 

13. Bengaluru's KIA named best regional airport in South Asia 

  • The Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) has been awarded the best re- airport in India and South Asia at the 2024 Skytrax World Airport Awards. Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL), the airport operator, said that this accolade is based on a comprehensive customer satisfaction survey. KIA's Terminal 2 also secured second position as the World's Best New Airport Terminal for terminals opened in the 18 months prior to the 2024 World Airport Awards. 
  • BIAL said that this award covers new airport terminals that have opened in the previous 18 months, and covers the full range of airport facilities, staff services and customer experience evaluation. Since opening in 2023, Terminal 2 has also received a UNESCO Prix Versailles World's Most Beautiful Airport award along with a Special Prize for its interiors, LEED platinum certification, and more, it said. 

Awards News

14.Ram Charan awarded honorary doctorate in literature from Vels University 

  • Ram Charan has been conferred with an honorary doctorate from the prestigious Vels University in Chennai. 
  • He was also a chief guest at the graduation ceremony. 
  • Previous recipients of this recognition have been Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, director Shankar and others. 
  • Ram Charan debuted in 2007 with Chirutha. Since then, he has given several successful films over the course of his career, including Magadheera, Yevadu and Dhruva. 
  • His film RRR, which was directed by SS Rajamouli, received global acclaim and went on to win the Oscar for Best Original Song for Naatu Naatu. 
  • Ram has also received Nandi Awards, Filmfare awards, and South Indian International Movie Awards for his body of work. 

Recent Awards 

  • Young Global Leader in World Economic Forum’s Class 2024 – Adwaita Nayar 
  • South Asian Person of the Year award by Harvard University – Avantika Vandanapu 
  • American President’s Volunteer Award 2024 – Lokesh Muni 
  • John Dirks Canada Gairdner Global Health Award 2024 -Dr Gagandeep Kang 
  • John L “Jack” Swigert, Jr Award 2024 – ISRO (for Chandrayaan -3) 
  • Best Scientific Poster Award’ 2024 – Dr. Agarwal’s Eye Hospital 

15. Amitabh Bachchan will be honored with 'Lata Dinanath Mangeshkar Award' 

  • Famous Hindi cinema actor Amitabh Bachchan will be honored with the third Lata Dinanath Mangeshkar Award this year. The award was announced at a press conference organized by the Master Dinanath Mangeshkar Smriti Pratishthan Public Charitable Trust and the Mangeshkar family on 16 April 2024 in Mumbai. 
  • Now another achievement has been added to the series of achievements and awards earned by the great hero of Hindi cinema in his cinematic journey of five and a half decades. Several other awards were also announced by the Trust and the Mangeshkar family. 
  • Amitabh will be given this award on 24 April 2024 in Mumbai on the occasion of the 82nd death anniversary of Lata Mangeshkar's father Dinanath Mangeshkar. 
  • Under this, awards will be given to the following: Apart from best film production and special award for actor to actor Randeep Hooda, music composer AR Rahman, actress Padmini Kolhapuri, Roop Kumar Rathore, Marathi actor Ashok Saraf and actor Atul Parchure are included. Marathi play Ghalib will receive the Mohan Wagh Award for Best Play. 
  • Deepstambh Foundation's Manola Project, which provides residential training to disabled persons, orphans and economically disadvantaged students, will be recognized for its excellent social service. 

Lata Deenanath Mangeshkar Award 

  • This award was instituted in the year 2022 by the Bharat Ratna and Swar Kokila Trust and the Mangeshkar family in the memory of late Lata Mangeshkar. Earlier in the year 2022 and 2023, this award was given to PM Narendra Modi and singer Asha Bhosle respectively. 

16. STT GDC India Earns Frost & Sullivan’s 2023 Indian Company of the Year Award 

  • Frost & Sullivan researched the data center colocation services industry and, based on its findings, recognizes STT GDC India with the 2023 Indian Company of the Year Award. 
  • STT GDC India is a pioneer data center solutions provider that delivers cutting-edge solutions and services, with a strong emphasis on environmental sustainability and technological innovation. 
  • STT GDC India stands out through its commitment to establishing long-term, sustainable business practices, with a strong focus on building and operating environmentally sustainable data centers. 
  • The company currently holds the coveted preferred partner status with customers across industries, including global hyperscalers and Fortune 500 companies. 

Important day 

17. 19 April – World Liver Day 

  • World Liver Day is observed every year on April 19. 
  • Objective – To create awareness about the significance of liver functions and prevention measures we should take to ensure that the liver is healthy 
  • Theme 2024 – Keep your liver healthy and disease-free 
  • In 2010, the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL) launched the first ever World Liver Day to commemorate the foundation day of EASL in 1966. Since then, April 19 has been celebrated as World Liver Day every year. 
  • According to studies, around 20 lakh people die due to liver diseases every year across the world – the numbers are expected to shoot up to a 35 percent increase by 2030. 

18. 19 April – World Jackal Day 

  • World Jackal Day is observed every year on 19 April. 
  • World Jackal Day is an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of protecting the habitat of jackals and to promote their conservation. 
  • The first World Jackal Day was celebrated in 2023, which is associated with an organization called Gold Schackel, which means golden jackal.

Banking News 

19. RBI suspended 'Bob World' app of Bank of Baroda 

  • The Reserve Bank of India, in exercise of its power under Section 35A of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949, has directed Bank of Baroda to suspend further entry of its customers on the 'Bob World' mobile application with immediate effect. 
  • In respon0se to the rise in cyber fraud incidents, including the Bank of Baroda World app scam, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) blocked Bank of Baroda customer access to its ‘BoB World’ mobile app in October 2023. 
  • The Finance Ministry is now proposing stringent measures to tackle such frauds, with a focus on enhancing cyber security and strengthening due diligence practices of financial institutions. 
  • It said, “Any participation of the Bank's customers on the 'Bob World' application will be subject to rectification of deficiencies observed by the Bank and strengthening of related processes to the satisfaction of RBI. 
  • The report claimed that the Finance Ministry may be in support of stricter Know Your Customer (KYC) processes and due diligence by banks and financial institutions while onboarding new traders. 
  • According to the report, this applies to business correspondents (BCs) as they may be more vulnerable to security breaches. 

Education News 

20. Activity-based curriculum drawn up for anganwadis 

  • A child's learning be gins at month zero, emphasises the National Framework of Early Childhood Stimulation, 2024, which lays down month-by-month activities to be conducted by pa- rents, anganwadi staff and ASHA workers for children from birth to the age of three. 
  • The framework docu- ment has been finalised by an internal committee comprising representa- tives from the Ministries of Women and Child Deve- lopment, Health and Family Welfare and Education, the Department of School Education and Literacy, Council of Educational Research and Training, the Institute of Home Economics, the University of Delhi and civil society organisations. 

Continuous learning 

  • Titled 'Navchetana', the activity-based curriculum follows the National Education Policy, 2020 that calls for a continuum of learning. Staff in 14 lakh anganwadis will be given training in the curriculum. 
  • The curriculum involves talking, playing, moving, listening to music and sounds, and stimulation of all the senses-particularly sight and touch in order to reach developmental mil- estones across domains, and develop "early language, and emergent lite racy and numeracy". 
  • As much as 75% of the brain develops in the first three years of a child's life, says Namya Mahajan, a member of the internal committee and founder of Rocket Learning. 
  • The national framework provides information on the importance of brain development in the first three years, and step by step instructions for care- givers and frontline work ers on conducting early stimulation activities, she said. 
  • This involves getting the child's attention, commun- icating with and respond ing to the child, introducing age and skill appropriate activities for play, and following the child's lead during the activities. 
  • It also involves helping the child with a new task and praising the child for her efforts. 
  • The document entails 36 sets of activities for children from months 0 to 36. It encourages the use of household objects such as cups, bottles or leftover pieces of fabric. Activities involve reaching for ob- jects, imitating sounds, spinning bangles, putting objects in and out of a jar and removing knots in a handkerchief in the first year. 
  • After a year, the activities include encouraging chil- dren to feed themselves and explore the house, in- volving them in the kitchen, playing with dough and introducing them to a mirror. 
  • At the age of 18 months, children are encouraged to scribble with a crayon and at 24 months, the recommended activities include shoe sorting and matching. By the age of three, children are introduced to a cycle, asked to say their names and colours. identify 
  • The framework says the activities will help identify children with developmental delays. In such a situation, the anganwadi worker or parent can adapt by picking up activities recommended for children a few months younger. 

Obituary News

21. India’s oldest Air Force pilot Dalip Singh Majithia passes away 

  • The oldest living pilot of the Indian Air Force, Squadron Leader Dalip Singh Majithia, died at the age of 103. 
  • Sardar Dalip Singh Majithia commanded the Indian Air Force in present-day Myanmar and then Burma during World War II. 
  • Born on July 27, 1920 at Shimla, Squadron Leader Majithia joined the Indian Air Force (IAF) volunteer reserve in 1940 during World War-II, following in the footsteps of his uncle Surjeet Singh Majithia (grandfather of Akali politician Bikramjit Singh Majithia).

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