This Daily Current Affair Capsule aims to be a time-saving tool for going through relevant news from national dailies and government releases on PIB. Aspirants for UPSC IAS, CDS, SSC CGL, NDA, etc. will find it highly useful to cover for revision and awareness purposes.
National Important Current Affairs – 23 January 2018
■ The Nation pays homage to India’s great freedom fighter Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose on his 121st birth anniversary. It was on this day in 1897, Netaji was born in Cuttack, Odisha. His famous slogan, “You give me blood, I’ll give you Freedom” sparked patriotism in many Indians and it continues to inspire millions. Mahatma Gandhi described Subhas Chandra Bose as the Patriot of Patriots.
■ The Union Government has decided to declare 2018 as the ‘national year of millets’ to give a boost to nutrient-rich millets. This decision has been taken upon a request by Karnataka, which is the country’s leader in the millet sector.
Dedicating a year for millets will increase awareness about its health benefits, and also result in higher demand for these drought-resistant varieties, which will potentially result in remunerative prices for poor and marginal farmers. In times of climate change they are often the last crop standing and, thus, have a potential to act as a good risk management strategy for resource-poor marginal farmers.
Millet is a common term to categorize small-seeded grasses that are often termed nutri-cereals or dryland-cereals. They include sorghum, pearl millet, ragi, small millet, foxtail millet, proso millet, barnyard millet, kodo millet and other millets. Millets are photo-insensitive & resilient to climate change, they are hardy, resilient crops that have a low carbon and water footprint, can withstand high temperatures and grow on poor soils with little or no external inputs.
■ The 8th edition of the International Conference on Wild Silk Moths has started in Guwahati, Assam on January 22, 2018. The conference would help in increasing income of the people of the region who are involved with silk industry. India is holding the event for the second time with an aim to explore latest research and development. The conference is being organized by the Central Silk Board and International Society for Wild Silk Moths.
■ The Government of India, the Government of Uttarakhand and the World Bank sign $120 million Loan Agreement to improve access to Water Supply Services in peri-urban areas in the State of Uttarakhand. The Uttarakhand Water Supply Program for Peri-Urban Areas will help develop and implement a service-oriented and efficient water supply policy for these areas, strengthen the current monitoring and evaluation systems, and provide dedicated incentives for preparation and adoption of water supply ‘master-plans’. The $120 million loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), has a 5-year grace period, and a maturity of 17 years.
Mostly located in the plains that, while classified as rural, are effectively urban in nature (in terms of density of population, the structure of the economy, and aspirations of the people)
■ The government has launched an official anthem for “Bharat Ke Veer”, which is an initiative with a corpus fund to help the families of paramilitary troopers killed in the line of duty. The anthem is sung and composed by singer Kailash Kher.
Bharat ke Veer is a web portal and mobile application that is an IT-based platform, with an objective to enable willing donors to contribute towards the family of a braveheart who sacrificed his/her life in line of duty. This website is technically supported by National Informatics Centre (NIC) and powered by State Bank of India. “Bharat Ke Veer” corpus would be managed by a committee made up of eminent persons of repute and senior Government officials, who would decide to disburse the fund equitably to the braveheart’s family on a need basis.
■ The Parzor Foundation which is implementing the ‘Jiyo Parsi’ scheme along with the Union minority affairs ministry has said that over 130 babies were born since 2013. The government launched the‘Jiyo Parsi’ scheme in 2013 to address the Parsi community’s declining population.
Note that: The population of Parsis has plunged from 1.14 lakh in 1941 to 57,264 in 2011. The sharp decline in the birth rate in the community — which is located mainly in Maharashtra’s Mumbai and parts of Gujarat – is attributed to socio-psychological reasons. These include Parsis having late or non-marriages, its members marrying with people outside the community and also many couples not willing to have babies.
About Jiyo Parsi scheme:
Jiyo Parsi is a Government of India supported scheme to reverse the decline in population of the Parsi Zoroastrian Community in India. The main objective of the “Jiyo Parsi” scheme is to reverse the declining trend of Parsi population by adopting a scientific protocol and structured interventions, stabilize their population and increase the population of Parsis in India.
The Jiyo Parsi Scheme comprises of three components: Advocacy Component, Health of the Community Component and Medical Component.
■ India will be hosting the International Dam Safety Conference – 2018 at Thiruvananthapuram being organised by the Central Water Commission in association with Kerala Water Resources Department (KWRD), Kerala State Electricity Board, National Institute of Technology Calicut and College of Engineering, Trivandrum.
About the DRIP:
Dam safety conferences are organized as an annual event under the Dam Safety Rehabilitation and Improvement Project (DRIP) project being run by the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation (MoWR,RD & GR) in the 7 states of Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, and Uttarakhand. The DRIP was launched in the year 2012 with a financial outlay of Rs. 2100 Crores, aised by World Bank aimed at the rehabilitation of old dams in the country that are in need of attention for ensuring their structural safety and operational efficiency.
Note that: Globally India ranks 3rd after China and the United States of America in terms of the number of large dams (5254 large dams in operation and 447 large dams under construction) with a total storage capacity of about 283 billion cubic meters. About 80% of these large dams are more than 25 years old, and about 213 dams exceed the age of 100 years. They were built in an era whose design practices and safety considerations do not match with the current design standards and the prevailing safety norms. This necessitates special efforts for the rehabilitation of old dams to ensure their long-term structural safety.
International Current Affairs Capsule – 23 January 2018
■ The annual World Economic Forum, WEF, meet began in Davos with a special message from Pope Francis being read out at the opening ceremony. The Pope also applauded the summit’s theme ‘Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World’. WEF Founder and Executive Chairman Klaus Schwab declared the summit open amid the ski-resort receiving record snowfall.
More than 3,000 world leaders from business, politics, art, academia and civil society would be participating in the summit and the Indian presence is the largest ever with over 130 participants.
■ Prime Minister Narendra Modi has met the President of the Swiss Confederation Alain Berset in Davos and discussed ways to deepen bilateral ties on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual summit. The two leaders had productive discussions on steps to further deepen our bilateral cooperation built upon our shared values of democracy and diversity.
Economics Today’s Current Affair Capsule – 23 January 2018
■ India has been ranked at the 62nd place among emerging economies on an Inclusive Development Index (IDI-2018) released by World Economic Forum (WEF). India’s position is much below China (26th) and Pakistan (47th).
The 2018 index, which measures the progress of 103 economies on three individual pillars – growth and development; inclusion; and inter-generational equity. The index takes into account the living standards, environmental sustainability and protection of future generations from further indebtedness.
■ As per RBI’s data on Census on Foreign Liabilities and Assets of Indian Direct Investment Companies 2016-17, Mauritius was the largest source of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in India in FY17. While the United States has acquired 2nd position followed by UK, Singapore and Japan.
According to the data, the manufacturing sector accounted for nearly half of the total FDI at market prices. Information and communication services, and financial and insurance activities were the other major sectors that attracted FDI.
Sports Current Affairs – 23 January 2018
■ Young Indian shuttler Siddharth Pratap Singh has won his maiden international title in men’s singles, the Swedish Open Junior International Series in the finals in Uppsala in Sweden.
■ Soloman Deksisa from Ethiopia has won the 15th edition of Tata Mumbai Marathon in men’s category, the richest race in India with a prize money worth 4 lakh 5,000 dollars. Amane Gobena also from Ethiopia has won the Mumbai Marathon in women’s category. Meanwhile, Indian Olympic athlete T Gopi won the Mumbai Marathon in the Indian Elite category and Sudha Singh of Central Railways won in the Indian Elite Women category.
“Current Affairs Questions for UPSC IAS Prelims – 23 January 2018 “
Q1. India’s first garbage fest ’Kachra Mahotsav 2018’ has organized by which state to increase awareness, to guide people on waste management and to showcase multiple techniques for reusing things that are labelled as garbage?
- A) Madhya Pradesh
- B) Chhattisgarh
- C) Assam
- D) Punjab
Q2. Who has been appointed as the new Chief Election Commissioner (CEC)?
- A) Y S Reddy
- B) Om Prakash Rawat
- C) Ashok Lavasa
- D) Sunil Arora
Q3. Which state has recently inaugurated the World War II Memorial Museum, which is a cemetery site where numerous mass graves have been discovered?
- A) Arunachal Pradesh
- B) Karnataka
- C) Odisha
- D) Uttar Pradesh
Q4. Which city is hosting the Ramayana Festival of ASEAN Countries?
- A) Lucknow
- B) New Delhi
- C) Ahmedabad
- D) Hyderabad
Q5. Which of the following has won the best film award at the 63rd Jio Filmfare Awards 2018?
- A) Bareilly Ki Barfi
- B) Newton
- C) Toilet: Ek Prem Katha
- D) Hindi Medium
Answer these questions in the comments below. We encourage you to discuss your thoughts on the news and issues mentioned in today’s current affairs post. The idea is to promote healthy discussions on interesting issues to make preparation fun. Have a good day!