Daily Current Affairs and MCQs for UPSC - January 15, 2021 (The Hindu, Economic Times, PIB)

13-day Khelo India Zanskar Winter Sport & Youth festival 2021

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.


Context

  • The UT administration is promoting far-flung and snowbound Zanskar as winter tourism destination.
  • A 13-day Khelo India Zanskar Winter Sport & Youth festival 2021 to begin from 18th January.

Background

After Ladakh MP Jamyang Tsering Namgyal convinced the Union Sports Minister Kirren Rijiju about the potential for various winter activities to promote tourism and economic activities in Zanskar, the tourism department of UT administration is conducting a festival.

Highlights

Starting from 18th  till 30th January , Chadar Trek on Zanskar river, meditation, yoga, ice skating,  Hockey, snow skieing, climbing, traditional Archery, snow scooter, biking, Yak and horse riding, Snow sculpturing and food and cultural festivals. 

Source: AIR News.

SC stays three new farm laws; forms committee to resolve crisis

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.


Context

  • The Supreme Court has put a stay on the implementation of the three farm laws until further orders.
  • It has also set up a committee of agricultural experts to facilitate talks between the Centre and farmer unions to resolve the impasse. 

Highlights

  • The Apex Court said, it was trying to solve the problem in the best way and had the power to suspend the laws.
  • The bench headed by Chief Justice of India, S. A. Bobde and comprising Justices A. S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian, said those genuinely interested in finding a solution would appear before the committee.
  • The bench was hearing a batch of petitions regarding the Constitutional validity of three farm laws passed by Parliament and a plea to disperse the protesting farmers. 

Source: AIR News.

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Kayakalp awards

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.


Context

  • Recently the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has conferred 5th National Kayakalp awardsto Public and Private Health Facilities for high standards of Sanitation and Hygiene.
  • Government of India launched a National Initiative ‘Kayakalp’ on 15th May 2015 to ensure hygiene, sanitation and cleanliness in Public Health Facilities in India.

Objectives

  • To promote cleanliness, hygiene and infection control practices in public healthcare facilities, through incentivizing and recognizing such public healthcare facilities that show exemplary performance in adhering to standard protocols of cleanliness and infection control.
  • To inculcate a culture of ongoing assessment and peer review of performance related to hygiene, cleanliness, and sanitation.
  • To create and share sustainable practices related to improved cleanliness in public health facilities linked to positive health outcomes.

Highlights

  • The Mera Aspataal Initiative was launched to capture patient reaction to the services offered in the hospital and help improve the services by taking corrective measures.
  • MoHFW had collaborated withMinistry of Drinking Water and Sanitation and launched SSS program, under which, one community health centre (CHCs) situated within Open Defecation Free block receives one-time grant of Rs. 00 lakhs under the National Health Mission for undertaking improvement activities, so that the CHC becomes Kayakalp CHC.

Source: AIR News.

Cabinet Approves MoU Between India, UAE For Scientific And Technical Cooperation

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India's interests.


Context

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given its approval to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on scientific and technical cooperation between the National Centre of Meteorology (NCM), the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES).

Background

The MoU provides for sharing of knowledge, data and operational products for meteorological, seismological and oceanic services, such as radar, satellite, tide gauges, seismic and meteorological stations.

Highlights

  • The agreement will facilitate the exchange of experience/visits in term of scientists, research scholars and specialists; exchange of scientific and technical information related to common interest activities, organisation of bilateral scientific and technical seminars/workshops/conferences and training courses on problems.
  • Meteorological observation networks on the mutual agreement over Ocean waters.
  • It will also promote cooperation in the development of special capacities of Tsunami models researches for faster and more reliable forecasts of Tsunamis propagating through the Oman Sea and the Arabian Sea which affect the coastal areas of India and northeast part of the UAE.
  • The scientific activities being carried out by the respective Institutes in India and NCM-UAE were discussed during the UAE delegation visit at MoES on November 8, 2019 and found many common areas of research.

Source: Business World.

APEDA organizes VBSM with FPOs of APDMP and Millet Exporters to promote Millet products

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.


Context

The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) in association with Andhra Pradesh Drought Mitigation Project (APDMP), an externally aided project funded by IFAD, organized a Virtual Buyer Seller Meet with Millet Exporters and FPOs of Millet for establishing marketing linkages.

Background

  • Considering the potential of increasing exports of Millets and Millet products and the focus given by Government for development of Millet sector of Nurti Cereals, APEDA is closely interacting with Indian Institute of Millet Research (IIMR) and other stakeholders like National Institute Nutrition, CFTRI and Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) for perspective planning of five years for promotion of Millets and Millet products.
  • This platform has provided an opportunity to the exporters and FPOs to interact with each other for supply and sourcing of products.

Highlights

  • APEDA is making efforts to prepare a perspective Action Plan for increasing export of Millet and Millet Products for a period five years i.e. 2021-2026 to enable all concerned stakeholders for taking necessary action in a time bound manner for achieving the target.
  • Further, efforts would be made on identification of Organic Millet clusters, registration of FPOs and exporters of Millets at Farmer Connect Portal developed by APEDA for further interaction for buy and sell activity, and identification of new Potential International Markets for promotion of Indian Millets. 
  • Increasing interest in reviving the consumption of millets across various countries is favoring the growth prospects of this product in recent years within the country and for exports as well.
  • Millet is a common term to categorize small-seeded grasses that are often termed nutri-cereals, and includes Sorghum, Pearl Millet, Ragi, Small Millet, Foxtail Millet, Proso Millet, Barnyard Millet, Kodo Millet and other millets. Millets are the cereal crops generally small-seeded and known for high nutritive value.

Source: PIB.

NIC jointly with the CBSE & Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog provides the CollabCAD Software for CBSE affiliated schools and released e-Book for students and professionals

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.


Context

  • National Informatics Centre (NIC), MeitY and Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), Ministry of Education along with Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog, provided the CollabCAD Software and released a comprehensive e-book on CollabCAD 3D modeling here today. 
  • NIC and CBSE also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for ‘CollabCAD Software Support and Training for Students and Faculty in Engineering Graphics Curriculum for Class X and XII across CBSE affiliated Schools’ for a period of 10 years.

Background

  • CollabCAD is the first indigenous tool created by NIC in partnership with Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC).
  • It is a collaborative network-enabled and desktop software system, providing a total engineering solution from 2D drafting & detailing to 3D product design for students and faculty of Engineering Graphics Curriculum.

Highlights

  • National Education Policy lays a lot of emphasis on vocationalization and CBSE has been the pioneering board to offer a wide range of vocational subjects to students.
  • A product like CollabCAD along with the opportunities offered by Atal Tinkering Labs can help students to be at the frontier of knowledge.
  • The comprehensive e-book on CollabCAD 3D modeling 1.0 is ready for public release through the CollabCAD portal for registered users and will guide CAD students, beginners, and professionals in understanding and using CollabCAD Software.
  • It is designed and authored by the CollabCAD Group of NIC, New Delhi.
  • This initiative aims to provide a great platform to students across the country to create and modify 3D digital designs with a free flow of creativity and imagination.
  • This software would also enable students to collaborate over designs across the network and concurrently access the same design data for storage and visualization.

Source: PIB.

Grand Challenge for Development of “Smart Water Supply Measurement and Monitoring System”

Focus: GS3.                                

Topic: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.


Context

National Jal Jeevan Mission (NJJM), Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Ministry of Jal Shakti in partnership with Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology launched an ICT Grand Challenge, for development of a ‘Smart water supply measurement and monitoring system’ on 15th September, 2020.

Background

  • Jal Jeevan Mission would be the user agency of the Grand Challenge and C-DAC, Bangalore is the implementing agency, providing technical support for the challenge.
  • Enthusiastic participation was observed from all over India.
  • Total 218 applications were received, from various sectors like LLP Companies, Indian Tech start-ups, Individuals etc.
  • A Jury was constituted, with experts from academia, industry, Jal Jeevan Mission, C-DAC, STPI, COEs, MeitY, etc.

Highlights

  • Currenty the prototypes are being developed which are going to be evaluated during the last week of January, 2021 by the jury.
  • A water test bed is set up in C-DAC Bangalore Electronics City Campus for these evaluations.
  • Best four techno-economically viable prototypes shall be selected for product development and each team will receive Rs. 25 Lakh to build their solution as per the need of the user agency.
  • This would be followed by field trial, testing & deployment and demonstration at approx.
  • 25 locations across the country as identified by Jal Jeevan Mission. Based on evaluation, one winner and two runner-ups will be selected and supported by 50 Lakh (winner) and 20 Lakh each (runner-ups).
  • The grand challenge is being carried out with funding support from MeitY and National Jal JeevanMission.
  • Jal Jeevan Mission is a flagship programme of Union Government which aims to provide tap water connection to every rural household by 2024. 
  • Announced by Prime Minister on 15th August, 2019, the Mission so far has provided 3.13 crore household tap connections in rural areas.

Source: PIB.

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Test your Knowledge

  1. Consider the following statements wrt “risk-o-meter”:
  • The risk-o-meter must be evaluated on a monthly basis.
  • Fund houses are required to disclose the risk-o-meter risk level along with the portfolio disclosure for all their schemes on their own websites as well as the website of the Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI) within 10 days of the close of each month.
  • Any change in the risk-o-meter reading with regard to a scheme shall be communicated to the unit-holders of that scheme.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below:

       A. 1 and 2 only
       B. 2 and 3 only
       C. 1 and 3 only
       D. AOTA

Solution: D

  1. Which of the following is the first insect approved by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) as a human food?

       A. Red Meat
       B. Mosquito
       C. Mealworms
       D. Chicken

Solution: C

 

 

 

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