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Micro Current Affairs February 2022 PDF

Date: 28 February 2022

Indian Economy

●    Economic Survey 2022= 1. Central theme- Agile approach 2. Indian economy is estimated to grow by 9.2% in real terms in 2021-22 3. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) projected to grow by 8-8.5% in real terms in 2022-23 4. Gross Tax Revenue registers a growth of over 50% during April to November, 2021 in YoY terms 5. As of end-November 2021, India was the fourth largest forex reserves holder in the world after China, Japan and Switzerland 6. Repo rate was maintained at 4% in 2021-22 7. Bank credit growth accelerated gradually in 2021-22 from 5.3% in April 2021 to 9.2% as on 31st December 2021 8. The average headline Consumer Price Index (CPI) -Combined inflation moderated to 5.2% in 2021-22 (April-December) from 6.6% in the corresponding period of 2020-21 9.

The decline in retail inflation (CPI) was led by easing food inflation 10. India’s overall score on the NITI Aayog Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) India Index and Dashboard improved to 66 in 2020-21 from 60 in 2019-20 and 57 in 2018-19 11. The Agriculture sector experienced buoyant growth in the past two years, accounting for a sizable 18.8% (2021-22) in Gross Value Added (GVA) of the country registering a growth of 3.6% in 2020-21 and 3.9% in 2021-22 12. Minimum Support Price (MSP) policy is being used to promote crop diversification 13. The Livestock sector has grown at a CAGR of 8.15% over the last five years ending 2019-20 14. The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) grew at 17.4% during April-November 2021 as compared to (-)15.3% in April-November 2020 15. Overall service Sector GVA is expected to grow by 8.2% in 2021-22 16. During the first half of 2021-22, the service sector received over USD 16.7 billion Foreign Direct Invest – accounting for almost 54% of total FDI inflows into India 17.

India has become the 3rd largest start-up ecosystem in the world after the US and China 18. 44 Indian start-ups have achieved unicorn status in 2021 taking the overall tally of unicorns to 83, most of which are in the services sector 19. Expenditure on social services (health, education and others) by Centre and States as a proportion of GDP increased from 6.2% in 2014-15 to 8.6% in 2021-22 (BE)
●    Reverse Repo Normalisation = 1. The Repurchase agreement (Repo) and the Reverse repo agreement are two key tools used by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to control the money supply 2. Repo rate is the rate at which the central bank of a country (RBI in case of India) lends money to commercial banks 3. The reverse repo is the interest rate that the RBI pays to the commercial banks when they park their excess “liquidity” (money) with the RBI 4. Repo Normalisation means the reverse repo rates will go up i.e. raising the reverse repo rate in one or two stages 5. The process of normalisation is mainly aimed at curbing inflation


●    Budget 2022-23: Direct Taxes = 1. No changes have been proposed to the income tax slabs and tax rates (individual taxpayers) 2. A direct tax is a tax that a person or organisation pays directly to the entity that imposed it 3. Example: income tax, real property tax, personal property tax, or taxes on assets 4. The government has proposed to provide a one-time window to correct omissions in Income Tax Returns (ITRs) filed 5. National Pension System account of State Government employees which brings them at par with central government employees 6.

To provide a level playing field between cooperative societies and companies, the government proposed to reduce this rate for the cooperative societies also to 15% 7. Proposed to reduce the surcharge on co-operative societies from present 12% to 7% for those having total income of more than 1 crore and up to 10 crores
●    Budget 2022-23: Indirect Taxes = 1. An indirect tax is a tax that is levied upon goods and services before they reach the customer who ultimately pays the indirect tax as a part of market price of the goods or service purchased 2. For example, Goods and Services Tax (GST), Import duties 3. GST collections touched a record of Rs 1.40 lakh crore in January 2022 on rapid economic recovery (despite the coronavirus pandemic) 4. National Capital Goods Policy, 2016 aims at doubling the production of capital goods by 2025 5. The Budget provided for applying a moderate tariff of 7.5% which will be conducive to the growth of the domestic sector and ‘Make in India’


●    Import Duty = 1. This would mean that imports become more expensive or cheaper depending on the change in customs duties 2. The customs duty on umbrellas was doubled to 20% 3. Import duty was reduced for cut and polished diamonds, asafoetida, cocoa beans, methyl alcohol and acetic acid 4. The tariff changes will come into effect from 1st May 2022, as per the Finance Bill 2022-23
●    Virtual Digital Assets = 1. The Finance Minister, in her Budget 2022 announced a 30% tax on income from virtual digital assets 2. She also proposed a Tax Deduction at Source (TDS) on payment made in relation to the transfer of virtual digital assets at 1% above a monetary threshold 3. The finance bill defined the term “virtual digital asset” by entering a new clause (47A) 4. As per the proposed new clause, a virtual digital asset is proposed to mean any information or code or number or token (not being Indian currency or any foreign currency), generated through cryptographic means 5. A currency is a currency only when it is issued by the central bank even if it is a crypto
●    Saffron Bowl Project = 1. North East Center for Technology Application and Reach (NECTAR) under Saffron Bowl project has identified a few locations in Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya for saffron cultivation 2. NECTAR is an autonomous body under the Department of Science & Technology (DST) 3. Initially, Saffron production was confined to very few and specific regions of Kashmir 4. India cultivates about 6 to 7 tonnes of saffron while the demand is 100 tonnes 5. Saffron is a plant whose dried stigmas (thread-like parts of the flower) are used to make saffron spice 6. In ancient Sanskrit literature, saffron is referred to as ‘bahukam’ 7. It is cultivated and harvested in the Karewa (highlands) of Jammu and Kashmir 8. In India, saffron Corms (seeds) are cultivated during the months of June and July and at some places in August and September 9. Saffron grows well at an altitude of 2000 meters above sea level 10. It grows in many different soil types but thrives best in calcareous (soil that has calcium carbonate in abundance), humus-rich and well-drained soil with a pH between 6 and 8 11. It also requires adequate rainfall that is 1000-1500 mm per annum 12. Recently, the Kashmir saffron got Geographical Indication (GI) tag status 13. The Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology (CSIR-IHBT) and the Government of Himachal Pradesh, have jointly decided to increase the production of the two spices namely, Saffron and Heeng (asafoetida)
●    Surety Bonds = 1. The government has allowed the use of surety insurance bonds as a substitute for bank guarantees in case of government procurement and also for gold imports 2. The IRDAI (Surety Insurance Contracts) Guidelines, 2022 will come into effect from 1st April , 2022 3. A surety bond is a legally binding contract entered into by three parties—the principal, the obligee, and the surety 4. Surety bonds are mainly aimed at infrastructure development 5.

The move to frame rules for surety contracts will help address the large liquidity and funding requirements of the infrastructure sector 6. According to new guidelines, Insurance companies can launch the much-anticipated surety bonds now 7. Surety Insurance contracts should be issued only to specific projects and not clubbed for multiple projects
●    Retrospective Taxation = 1. The Union Budget 2022-23 brought in some amendments to the Income Tax (IT) Act 1961 that would be effective retrospectively 2. A retrospective tax is one that is charged for transactions in the long past 3. It can be a new or additional charge on transactions done in the past 4. Retrospective tax could correct that situation by charging tax under the existing policy 5. Countries use this form of taxation to rectify any deviations in the taxation policies that, in the past, allowed firms to take benefit from any loophole

 


●    National Single Window System = 1. Jammu & Kashmir became the first Union Territory to be onboarded the National Single Window System (NSWS) 2. NSWS is linked with India Industrial Land Bank (IILB) which hosts 45 industrial parks of J&K 3. The platform was soft launched in September 2021 by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry 4. It is a one-stop digital platform that aims at allowing investors to apply for various pre-operations approvals required for commencing a business in the country 5. It will provide strength to other schemes e.g. Make in India, Startup India, PLI scheme etc
●    Repo Rate Unchanged = 1. The six-member Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) kept key policy rates – Repo rate, Reverse repo rate and the Bank rate – unchanged and retained the accommodative policy stance 2. This is the tenth consecutive time that the repo rate has remained unchanged 3. Repo Rate has been retained at 4% to boost

4. Reverse Repo Rate has been retained at 3.35% growth 5. The Bank Rate unchanged at 4.25% 6. Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate has also been retained at 4.25% 7. The RBI has projected a 5.3% consumer price (retail) inflation for the current financial year 2021-22 (FY22) despite rising crude oil prices
●    Lavender Cultivation = 1. ‘Lavender Cultivation’ under CSIR-IIIM’s Aroma Mission will be started in Ramban district (Jammu Kashmir) as a part of Purple Revolution 2. The Purple or Lavender Revolution was launched in 2016 by the Union Ministry of Science & Technology

3. Hydrosol, which is formed after distillation from the flowers, is used to make soaps and room fresheners 4. The CSIR Aroma Mission is envisaged to bring transformative change in the aroma sector through desired interventions in the areas of agriculture, processing and product development 5. The nodal laboratory is CSIR-Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CSIR-CIMAP), Lucknow
●    Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) = 1. Sales of NFTs surged USD 25 billion in 2021 as the crypto asset exploded in popularity 2. Anything that can be converted into a digital form can be an NFT 3. If anyone converts its digital asset to an NFT, he/she will get proof of ownership, powered by Blockchain

4. NFTs are different from other digital forms in that they are backed by Blockchain technology 5. NFTs can have only one owner at a time 6. Terra Nulius was the first NFT(started in 2015) on Ethereum Blockchain 7. Cryptocurrency is a currency and is fungible, meaning that it is interchangeable 8. NFTs are non-fungible, which means the value of one NFT is not equal to another 9. Blockchain is a type of shared database that differs from a typical database in the way that it stores information, blockchains store data in blocks that are then linked together via cryptography

 

International

 

●    China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) = 1. Pakistan signed a new agreement with China to begin the second phase of the USD 60 billion CPEC 2. The second phase primarily revolves around Special Economic Zones (SEZs) development and industrialisation 3. CPEC is a 3,000-km long route of infrastructure projects connecting China’s northwest Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and the Gwadar Port in the western province of Balochistan in Pakistan 4. CPEC is a part of the Belt and Road Initiative 5. The BRI, launched in 2013, aims to link Southeast Asia, Central Asia, the Gulf region, Africa, and Europe with a network of land and sea routes 6. India has also protested to China over the CPEC as it is being laid through the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK)
 


●    India-Russia = 1. Cooperation at the UNSC 2. The Bilateral consultations on United Nations-related issues were held between India and Russia in New Delhi 3. Russia is set to assume the presidency of the UN Security Council in February, 2022 4. The discussion came in the backdrop of tensions between Russia and Ukraine over possible eastward expansion by NATO 5. Earlier, the 21st India-Russia annual summit took place at New Delhi- the first 2+2 ministerial dialogue 6. At the UN Security Council (UNSC) meeting on Ukraine, India also called for the immediate de-escalation of the situation while taking into account the security interests of all
●    Falkland Islands = 1. Britain rejected a statement from China that affirmed it’s support for Argentina’s claim to the Falkland Islands 2. Earlier, China and Argentina issued a joint statement that said China “reaffirms its support for Argentina’s demand for the full exercise of sovereignty over the Malvinas Islands (Falkland Islands),” using the Argentine name for the territory 3. The Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) are a remote South Atlantic archipelago 4. The capital and major town is Stanley, on East Falkland  

●    India and WFP = 1. India signed an agreement with the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) for the distribution of 50,000 MT of wheat that it has committed to sending to Afghanistan 2. Earlier, the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan was held 3. The meeting called for “urgent humanitarian assistance” to the Afghan people 4. Iran has also offered to facilitate some of the wheat through Chabahar port and then on to Afghanistan’s border via Zahedan 5. The World Food Programme (WFP) is the leading humanitarian organisation saving lives and changing lives, delivering food assistance in emergencies 6. WFP was founded in 1961 by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) with its headquarters in Rome, Italy

7. It is also a member of the United Nations Sustainable Development Group (UNSDG), a coalition of UN agencies and organisations aimed at fulfilling the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 8. The WFP has been awarded with the Nobel Prize for Peace 2020 9. Major Reports: Global Report on Food Crisis
●    4th Quad Foreign Ministers' Meeting = 1. Held in Melbourne, Australia 2. QUAD is the informal strategic dialogue between India, Japan, USA, and Australia with a shared objective of ensuring and supporting a “free, open and prosperous” Indo-Pacific region 3. The Quad foreign ministers reaffirmed their support to principles of openness, protection of national sovereignty, and observance of rules and fair play, in remarks seen as a message to China

4. India is open to supplying safe and affordable Made in India vaccines, such as COVOVAX and CORBEVAX, under the QUAD vaccine partnership
●    Solomon Islands = 1. The US says it will open an embassy in the Solomon Islands 2. Solomon Islanders cherished their history with Americans on the battlefields of World War II (1939-45) 3. The embassy announcement fits with a new Biden administration strategy for the Indo-Pacific and emphasises building partnerships with allies in the region 4. Solomon Islands is a nation in Melanesia, east of Papua New Guinea 5. Its capital is Honiara, located on the island of Guadalcanal 6. Melanesia is a subregion of Oceania in the southwestern Pacific Ocean 7. The island is a constitutional monarchy, with the British monarch, represented by a governor-general, serving as the formal head of state  

 

 
●    India- UAE Virtual Summit = 1. Issued a Joint Vision Statement "Advancing the India and UAE Comprehensive Strategic Partnership: New Frontiers, New Milestone” 2. The shared objective is to promote new trade, investment, and innovation dynamics in diverse sectors 3. CEPA  is a kind of free trade pact which covers negotiation on the trade in services and investment, and other areas of economic partnership 4. In 2019, UAE awarded the ZAYED Medal, their highest civilian award, to the Prime Minister of India 5. India-UAE trade was around USD 60 billion making UAE, India’s third-largest trading partner for the year 2019-20 after China and the USA 6. The UAE is home to the Indian expatriate community of more than 2.6 million, the largest expatriate community in the UAE

 

Science & Technology

 

•    World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day = 1. Observed every year on 30th January 2. It was declared in the 74th World Health Assembly (2021) 3. The World Health Assembly is the decision-making body of the World Health Organization (WHO) 4. NTDs are a group of infections that are most common among marginalized communities in the developing regions of Africa, Asia, and the Americas 5. They are caused by a variety of pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, protozoa and parasitic worms 6. Examples of NTDs are: snakebite envenomation, scabies, yaws, trachoma, Leishmaniasis and Chagas disease etc

7. World NTD Day commemorates the simultaneous launch of the first NTD road map (2012-2020) and the London Declaration on NTDs on 30th January 2012 8. India is at the cusp of eliminating Kala-Azar, with 99% Kala-Azar endemic blocks having achieved the elimination target
•    Coal Gasification = 1. The Delhi-based non-profit, Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), has raised concerns about the Union Government’s announcement on coal gasification projects in the Budget 2022-23 2. The budget proposed four pilot projects for coal gasification and conversion of coal into chemicals required for the industry 3. Coal gasification is a process in which coal is partially oxidised with air, oxygen, steam or carbon dioxide to form a fuel gas 4. In-situ gasification of coal or Underground Coal Gasification (UCG) is the technique of converting coal into gas while it is still in the seam and then extracting it through wells

5. It produces Syngas which is a mixture consisting primarily of methane (CH4), carbon monoxide (CO), hydrogen (H2), carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapour (H2O)
•    India’s First Graphene Innovation Centre = 1. Come up in Thrissur, Kerala 2. The joint venture of Digital University of Kerala, Centre for Materials for Electronics Technology (C-MET), and Tata Steel Limited 3. The state government would provide the basic infrastructure for project 4. The Centre would help attract investors to develop graphene products 5. Graphene is a one-atom-thick layer of carbon atoms arranged in a hexagonal lattice 6. It is the thinnest, most electrically and thermally conductive material in the world, while also being flexible, transparent and incredibly strong

7. Often referred to as a wonder material for its extraordinary electrical and electronics properties, graphene could replace Indium and thereby bring down the cost of OLED (organic light-emitting diode) screens in smartphones, studies have shown 8. Applications: anti-corrosion coatings and paints, efficient and precise sensors, faster and efficient electronics, flexible displays, efficient solar panels, faster DNA sequencing, drug delivery
•    Artificial Neural Network = 1. The global Artificial Neural Network (ANN) Market report was published 2. It is an information bank that delivers comprehensive information about the market ranging from the establishment to the predictable growth trend 3. Artificial Neural Network is a vital subset of machine learning that helps computer scientists in their work on complex tasks, such as, strategizing, making predictions, and recognizing trends 4. It is a computational model that mimics the way nerve cells work in the human brain
Starlink 
•    Starlink is a SpaceX project to build a broadband network with a cluster of orbiting spacecraft that could eventually number thousands 
•    The Starlink satellites carry Hall thrusters, which use electricity and krypton gas to generate an impulse, to maneuver in orbit

•    Geomagnetic storm = 1. Elon Musk’s Starlink has lost 40 satellites that were caught in a geomagnetic storm a day after they were launched 2. Solar storms are magnetic plasma, which are ejected at great speed from solar surface 3. They occur during the release of magnetic energy, which is associated with sunspots (dark regions on the Sun) 4. It can last for a few minutes or hours
•    Accelerate Vigyan scheme = 1. The Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB), has invited applications under ‘ABHYAAS’, a program of ‘Accelerate Vigyan’ scheme, for summer season 2. SERB is an autonomous body of the Department of Science & Technology (DST), Union Ministry of Science & Technology 3. ABHYAAS is a program of AV scheme, is an attempt to boost research and development in the country by enabling and grooming potential postgraduate / Ph.D. students by developing dedicated research skills in selected areas/disciplines / fields through its two components — high-end workshops (“KAARYASHALA”) and Training and Skill Internship (“VRITIKA”)
•    Nuclear Fusion Energy = 1. A team at the Joint European Torus (JET) facility near Oxford in central England generated 59 megajoules of sustained energy during an experiment in December, more than doubling a 1997 record 2. The JET site is the largest operational one of its kind in the world 3. The energy was produced in a machine called a tokamak, a doughnut-shaped apparatus 4. Nuclear fusion is defined as the combining of several small nuclei into one large nucleus with the subsequent release of huge amounts of energy

5. International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) is a fusion research mega-project supported by seven members – China, the European Union, India, Japan, South Korea, Russia and the U.S. – based in the south of France, to further demonstrate the scientific and technological feasibility of fusion energy
•    Vigyan Jyoti Programme = 1. The Vigyan Jyoti programme was extended to 100 districts in its 2nd phase 2. It was launched by the Department of Science & Technology (DST), Ministry of Science and Technology 3. It aims to address the underrepresentation of women in different fields of Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in the country 4. As a first step, the “Vigyan Jyoti” has been introduced in the year 2019-20 at the school level wherein meritorious girl students of Class 9-12 are being encouraged to pursue higher education and career in STEM field 5. The Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti (NVS), an autonomous organization of the Ministry of Education, is the implementation partner of Vigyan Jyoti


•    Synthetic Biology = 1. The Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology released a draft foresight paper on synthetic biology 2. Synthetic biology has multifarious applications of energy, agriculture and biofuels 3. It refers to the science of using genetic sequencing, editing, and modification to create unnatural organisms or organic molecules that can function in living systems 4. Applications: Standardised Biological Parts, Applied Protein Design, Natural Product Synthesis, Synthetic Genomics


•    Geospatial Technology = 1. The Government said that geospatial technology along with Drones will survey all the over 6 lakh Indian villages under the SVAMITVA scheme 2. The pan-India 3D Maps will be prepared for 100 Indian cities 3. Geospatial technology uses tools like GIS (Geographic Information System), GPS (Global Positioning System) and Remote Sensing for geographic mapping and analysis 4. Capture spatial information about objects, events and phenomena (indexed to their geographical location on earth, geotag) 5. SVAMITVA Scheme is a reformative step towards establishment of clear ownership of property in rural inhabited (Abadi) areas


•    Japanese Encephalitis = 1. The National Institute of Animal Biotechnology (NIAB), Hyderabad has developed an immunosensor 2. To detect Non-Structural 1 (NS1) secretory protein which is a suitable biomarker for Japanese Encephalitis Virus (JEV) found circulating in the blood 3. Detection of the NS1 instead of antibody has an added advantage 4. The antigen is present from day 1 of the infection and hence facilitates early detection 5. NIAB is an Indian autonomous research establishment of the Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology 6. Japanese Encephalitis is a disease caused by a flavivirus that affects the membranes around the brain 7. Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) is also a major cause of Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in India 8. The disease is transmitted to humans through bites from infected mosquitoes of the Culex species
•    Param Pravega = 1. Supercomputer 2. Installed by Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bengaluru 3. It has a supercomputing capacity of 3.3 petaflops 4. It has been installed under the government’s National Supercomputing Mission 5. The National Supercomputing Mission is intended to indigenise the development and manufacturing of powerful computers 6. PETAFLOP is a measure of a Supercomputer’s processing speed and can be expressed as a thousand trillion floating-point operations per second 7. FLOPS (floating point operations per second) are typically used to measure the performance of a computer’s processor 8. PARAM Shivay, the first supercomputer assembled indigenously, was installed in IIT (BHU)


•    Quantum Key Distribution Technology = 1. A joint team of scientists from Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi, for the first time in the country successfully demonstrated Quantum Key Distribution link between Prayagraj and Vindhyachal in Uttar Pradesh, a distance of more than 100 kilometres 2. Earlier, China’s satellite Micius had sent light particles to Earth to establish the world’s most secure communication link 3. QKD, also called Quantum Cryptography, is a mechanism to develop secure communication 4. In the QKD, encryption keys are sent as ‘qubits’ (or quantum bits) in an optical fibre 5. Qubits - the equivalent of bits in a binary system

 

Polity & Governance

 

•    National Commission for Women (NCW) = 1. The 30th Foundation Day (31st January) of the National Commission for Women (NCW) was celebrated 2. This change is visible as about 70% beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri MUDRA Yojana are women 3. India's economy relies on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and there is a need to promote women entrepreneurs in the country 4. The Committee on the Status of Women in India (CSWI) recommended nearly five decades ago, the setting up of a NCW to fulfils the surveillance functions to facilitate redressal of grievances and to accelerate the socio-economic development of women 5. Under the National Commission for Women Act, 1990, the NCW was set up as a statutory body in January 1992 6. The First Commission was constituted on 31st January 1992 with Mrs. Jayanti Patnaik as the Chairperson


•    SeHAT Initiative = 1. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has launched services for home delivery of medicines for veterans and serving military personnel services 2. Under an online medical consultation platform named Services e-Health Assistance and Teleconsultation (SeHAT) 3. It is the tri-services teleconsultation service of the MoD designed for all entitled personnel and their families 4. It aims to provide healthcare services to patients in their homes 5. SeHAT Stay Home OPD is based on the lines of eSanjeevani a similar free OPD service run by the MoHFW (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) for all citizens 6. SeHATOPD is a patient to doctor system where the patient can consult a doctor remotely through the internet
•    Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana = 1. The Government has clarified that Aadhaar of Husbands is not mandatory under the Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana, PMMVY 2. To facilitate the inclusion of single mothers and abandoned mothers

3. PMMVY is a maternity benefit programme being implemented in all districts of the country with effect from 1st January, 2017 4. It is a centrally sponsored scheme being executed by the Ministry of Women and Child Development 5. Cash benefits are provided to pregnant women in their bank account directly 6. Beneficiaries- All Pregnant Women and Lactating Mothers (PW&LM), excluding those who are in regular employment with the Central Government or the State Governments or PSUs or those who are in receipt of similar benefits under any law for the time being in force


•    Freedom of Religion = 1. Six students were banned from entering a college in Karnataka’s Udupi district for wearing a hijab 2. Article 25(1) of the Constitution guarantees the “freedom of conscience and the right freely to profess, practice and propagate religion” 3. It is a right that guarantees a negative liberty  4. The state shall ensure that there is no interference or obstacle to exercising this freedom 5. However, like all fundamental rights, the state can restrict the right for grounds of public order, decency, morality, health and other state interests


•    Anaemia Mukt Bharat = 1. In 2018, the Government of India launched the AMB strategy with the target to reduce anaemia in the vulnerable age groups such as women, children and adolescents 2. Anaemia is a condition in which the number of red blood cells or their oxygen-carrying capacity is insufficient to meet physiologic needs, which vary by age, sex, altitude, smoking, and pregnancy status 3. Iron deficiency is the most common cause of anaemia 4. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), women in the reproductive age group and having haemoglobin levels lower than 12 grams per decilitre (g / dL), as well as children under five with haemoglobin levels lower than 11.0 g / dL are considered anaemic


•    Intensified Mission Indradhanush (IMI) 4.0 = 1. Launched by Ministry of Health 2. It will ensure that Routine Immunization (RI) services reach unvaccinated and partially vaccinated children and pregnant women 3. Children up to two years will be covered in this drive 4. Three rounds of IMI 4.0 will be conducted in 416 districts, including 75 districts identified for Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav across 33 States/UTs 5. The Immunization Programme in India was introduced in 1978 as ‘Expanded Programme of Immunization (EPI) by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare 6. In 1985, the Programme was modified as ‘Universal Immunization Programme (UIP)’ 7. UIP prevents mortality and morbidity in children and pregnant women against 12 vaccine-preventable diseases

8. As of April 2021, during the various phases of Mission Indradhanush, a total of 3.86 crore children and 96.8 lakh pregnant women have been vaccinated 9. The first two phases of Mission Indradhanush resulted in 6.7% increase in full immunisation coverage in a year
•    New India Literacy Programme = 1. A new scheme for the period FYs 2022-2027 to cover all the aspects of Adult Education to align with National Education Policy 2020 has been approved 2. Term “Adult Education” will be replaced by “Education For All” 3. To impart not only foundational literacy and numeracy but also to cover other components which are necessary for a citizen of the 21st century 4. As per Census 2011, the absolute number of non-literates of the country in 15 years and above age group is 25.76 crore (Male 9.08 crore, Female 16.68 crore)


•    Gobar-Dhan (Bio-CNG) Plant = 1. Inaugurated by Prime Minister in Indore 2. Established under the second phase of Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM-U 2.0) 3. The plant is based on zero landfill models, whereby no rejects would be generated 4. Aim- removing lakhs of tonnes of garbage that is occupying thousand acres of land and causing air and water pollution leading to many diseases 5. SBM-U first phase was launched on 2nd October 2014

6. It will be implemented over five years from 2021 to 2026 with an outlay of Rs.1.41 lakh crore 7. The Mission is being implemented under the overarching principles of “waste to wealth”, and “circular economy”

 

Environment

 

●    World Wetlands Day = 1. World Wetlands Day was celebrated on the 2nd of February 2022 across the globe 2. On the occasion, "National Wetland Decadal Change Atlas” was prepared by the Space Applications Center (SAC - one of the major centers of ISRO) 3. This day marks the date of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands on 2nd February 1971 in the Iranian city of Ramsar 4. The Ramsar Convention is an intergovernmental treaty 5. It provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources 6. The countries with the most Ramsar Sites are the United Kingdom (175) and Mexico (142), as per the Ramsar List  7. Bolivia has the largest area with 148,000 sq km under the Convention protection 8.It was first celebrated in 1997 9. Theme for 2022: Wetlands Action for People and Nature

10. Wetlands are ecosystems saturated with water, either seasonally or permanently 11. Wetlands include mangroves, marshes, rivers, lakes, deltas, floodplains, and flooded forests, rice-fields, coral reefs, marine areas no deeper than 6 meters at low tide, as well as human-made wetlands such as waste-water treatment ponds and reservoirs 12. As per the IPBES (Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services)’s global assessment, wetlands are the most threatened ecosystem 13. India has a network of 49 Ramsar sites covering an area of 10,93,636 hectares, the highest in South Asia
●    Two New Ramsar Sites = 1. Two new Ramsar sites (Wetlands of International Importance), Khijadia Wildlife Sanctuary in Gujarat and Bakhira Wildlife Sanctuary in UP were announced on the occasion of World Wetlands Day 2. Bakhira Wildlife Sanctuary in UP provides a safe wintering and staging ground for a large number of species of the Central Asian Flyway 3. Khijadia Wildlife Sanctuary (Gujarat) is a coastal wetland with rich avifaunal diversity providing a safe habitat to endangered and vulnerable species 4. In India, according to the National Wetland Inventory and Assessment compiled by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), wetlands are 4.63% of the total geographical area of the country 5. India has 19 types of wetlands 6. In state-wise distribution of wetlands, Gujarat is at the top 7. It is followed by Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal


●    Golden Langur = 1. Assam villagers are opposing the sanctuary tag for golden langur habitat 2. The Assam Forest Department had issued a preliminary notification for converting the 19.85 sq. km. patch of forest into the Kajoijana Bamuni Hill Wildlife Sanctuary 3. Kakoijana Reserve Forest is one of the better-known homes of the golden langur 4. Habitat: Golden langur is endemic to western Assam, India, and southern Bhutan

5. IUCN List of Threatened Species: Endangered 6. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES): Appendix I 7. Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 : Schedule I
●    Sovereign Green Bonds = 1. The Finance Minister in the Budget 2022 announced that the government proposes to issue sovereign green bonds to mobilise resources for green infrastructure 2. Green bonds are issued by companies, countries and multilateral organisations to exclusively fund projects that have positive environmental or climate benefits and provide investors with fixed income payments

3. By the end of 2020, 24 national governments had issued Sovereign Green, Social and Sustainability bonds totalling a cumulative USD 111 billion dollar, according to the London-based Climate Bonds Initiative 4. With the IEA’s World Energy Outlook 2021, estimating that 70% of the additional USD 4 trillion spending to reach net-zero is required in emerging/developing economies, sovereign issuance can help kickstart these large inflows of capital
●    Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary = 1. The seasonal migration of wild animals has begun from the adjacent wildlife sanctuaries in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu to the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary (WWS) in Kerala 2. Located in Kerala, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary (WWS) is an integral part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, It was established in 1973 3. Other wildlife parks within the Reserve are: Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, Bandipur National Park, Nagarhole National Park, Mukurthi National Park and Silent Valley

4. Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary is contiguous to the tiger reserves of Nagerhole and Bandipur of Karnataka and Mudumalai of Tamil Nadu 5. Kabini river (a tributary of the Cauvery river) flows through the sanctuary
●    White Cheeked Macaque = 1.  Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) has found a new mammal species in India 2. First discovered in China in 2015 3. It is the last mammal to have been discovered in Southeast Asia 4. Both the Arunachal macaques as well as the White Cheeked Macaque exist in the same biodiversity hotspot in the eastern Himalayas 5. This species is not covered by the Wildlife Protection Act of India, because till now it is not known that the species existed in India


●    Volatile Organic Molecules (VOC) = 1. A study conducted by the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research revealed that India can slash emissions of Volatile Organic Molecules (VOC) by 76% in the next eight years by swapping all two- and three-wheelers with electric vehicles and all diesel-fuelled ones with Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) 2. VOCs are carbon-containing chemicals released by petrol and diesel vehicles 3. VOCs can have a natural origin, too- Plants emit these chemicals to attract pollinators, defend themselves from pests and predators and adapt to environmental stress 4. VOCs can irritate the eyes, nose and throat, damage body organs and cause cancer


●    Kaziranga National Park = 1. Recently research published, showed that Kaziranga National Park in Assam, is releasing more carbon than it is absorbing 2. It was found that the Amazon rainforest is now emitting more carbon dioxide than it is able to absorb 3. Researchers found that Kaziranga absorbed the most amount of carbon dioxide during the pre-monsoon season of March, April and May 4. The photosynthetic activity of trees during the monsoon decreases due to increased cloud cover 5. The scientists analyzed the isotopes in the transpired water and observed a strong link between the water and carbon cycles of the forest 6. It is located in the State of Assam 7. It is the single largest undisturbed and representative area in the Brahmaputra Valley floodplain 8. It was declared as a National Park in 1974, It has been declared a tiger reserve since 2007 10. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985 11. It is recognized as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife International 12. It is the home of the world's most one-horned rhinos 13. Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary has the highest density of one-horned rhinos in the world 14. Much of the focus of conservation efforts in Kaziranga are focused on the 'big four' species - Rhino, Elephant, Royal Bengal tiger and Asiatic water buffalo 15. National Highway 37 passes through the park area
●    Koalas = 1. Australia has officially classified koalas as ‘endangered’ 2. The number of Koalas in NSW (New South Wales) declined by between 33% and 61% since 2001 3. During the catastrophic 2019 bushfires in Australia, now known as the ‘Black Summer’, an estimated 60,000 koalas were impacted 4. The Endangered status of the koala means they and their forest homes should be provided with greater protection under Australia’s national environmental law

5. Koala is an arboreal (lives in trees) marsupia 6. The typical habitat for Koalas is open eucalypt woodlands, and the leaves of these trees make up most of their diet 7. They are endemic to Australia 8. IUCN status: Vulnerable
●    World Sustainable Development Summit 2022 = 1. The Prime Minister addressed The Energy and Resources Institute’s (TERI) World Sustainable Development Summit 2. The World Sustainable Development Summit (WSDS) is the annual flagship event of TERI 3. It is the only Summit on global issues, taking place in the developing world 4. It has been conceptualized as a single platform to accelerate action towards sustainable development and climate change 5. TERI is a non-profit research institute 6. It was established in 1974 as Tata Energy Research Institute and renamed to The Energy Resources Institute in 2003 7. India has fulfilled its commitments by ensuring that equitable energy access to the poor remains a cornerstone of its environmental policy


●    Reserved Forest = 1. The Delhi government has notified forest land in two villages in South Delhi as ‘reserved forest’, which will give them legal status 2. It was notified under Section 20 (declaration of reserved forest) of Indian Forest Act, 1927 3. Reserve forests are the most restricted forests and are constituted by the State Government on any forest land or wasteland which is the property of the Government 4. According to the India State of Forest Report-2021, the forest and tree cover in the country continues to increase with an additional cover of 1,540 square kilometres over the past two years

5. Madhya Pradesh has the largest forest cover in the country followed by Arunachal Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, and Maharashtra 6. In terms of forest cover as percentage of total geographical area, the top five States are Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, and Nagaland 7. The states that have shown the highest increase in forest cover are Telangana (3.07%), Andhra Pradesh (2.22%), and Odisha (1.04%)
●    Plastic Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2022 = 1. Announced by Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change 2. Notified the instructions on Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) for plastic packaging 3. Plastic Waste Management Rules 2016 has been amended to fast-track the elimination of single-use plastics and promote alternatives 4. Reuse of rigid plastic packaging material has been mandated in the guidelines to reduce the use of fresh plastic material for packaging 5. Guidelines allow for sale and purchase of surplus extended producer responsibility certificates


●    Sustainable Cities India Program = 1. The World Economic Forum and the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA) signed an MoU to collaborate on a jointly designed ‘Sustainable Cities India program’

2. This initiative is in synergy with India’s commitment to turn net-zero by 2070 as a climate mitigation response at COP26 3. The program aims to create an enabling environment for cities to generate decarbonization solutions across the energy, transport, and built environment sectors 4. Decarbonization in cities is a real opportunity to keep global warming well below 2°C and cities in India can make an enormous contribution in reaching this goal 5. Established in 1976, the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA) is India’s leading national think tank on urban planning and development

 

Indices and Reports

 

●    Interim Report of J&K Delimitation Commission = 1. In its interim report, the Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) Delimitation Commission has proposed significant changes to the electoral map of J&K 2. The delimitation exercise had started in June 2021 in the state 3. Delimitation exercises in J&K in the past have been slightly different from those in the rest of the country because of the region’s special status — which was scrapped by the Centre in August 2019 4. The delimitation of the state’s Assembly seats was governed by the Jammu and Kashmir Constitution and Jammu and Kashmir Representation of the People Act, 1957 5. In March 2020, the Delimitation Commission was constituted to the Union Territory 6. The Commission has been mandated to delimit the constituencies of the Union Territory in accordance with the provisions of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019 and Delimitation Act, 2002, by the Union Ministry for Law and Justice on March 6 2020 7. The Commission has proposed to reserve seven seats for Scheduled Castes (SCs) Hindus that mainly populate the Samba-Kathua-Jammu-Udhampur belt and nine seats for Scheduled Tribes (STs) which will help Gujjar and Bakerwals, mostly non-Kashmiri speaking Muslims inhabiting the Rajouri-Poonch belt in the Jammu province 8. The Commission has proposed reframing of Lok Sabha constituencies, with J&K having five parliamentary constituencies, which included three seats from Kashmir and two from Jammu


●    Coastal Vulnerability Index = 1. The Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) has carried out a coastal vulnerability assessment for the entire Indian coast at States level 2. The assessment has been conducted to bring out an Atlas comprising 156 maps on 1:1,00,000 scales to prepare a Coastal Vulnerability Index (CVI) 3. The maps will determine the coastal risks due to future sea-level rise  4. The CVI uses the relative risk that physical changes will occur as sea-level rises are quantified based on parameters like: Tidal range, Wave height, Coastal slope, Coastal elevation, Shoreline change rate, Geomorphology, Historical rate of relative sea-level change 5. India has a coastline of 7516.6 Km i.e. 6100 km of mainland coastline plus a coastline of 1197 Indian islands touching 13 States and Union Territories (UTs) 6. INCOIS is an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) 7. It is located in Hyderabad & was established in 1999 8. It is a unit of the Earth System Science Organisation (ESSO), New Delhi
●    Parliamentary Panel Report on Police Reforms = 1. The Parliamentary standing committee on home affairs has tabled a report on Police- training, modernisation, and reforms 2. The report asked the Centre to advice states and Union Territories to create a road map for ensuring 33% representation of women in police while expressing anguish over their underrepresentation 3. It recommended offline and online modules to help them de-stress through yoga, exercises, counseling and treatment 4. It called for the separation of investigation from law and order to maintain accountability and increase police autonomy in probing crimes

5. The panel backed virtual trials, particularly those involving high-risk groups, via video conferencing 6. The committee expressed disappointment over the poor housing satisfaction levels among police personnel and recommended an allocation of funds for housing 7. Policing system should be transparent, independent, accountable and people-friendly 8. Community policing should be promoted
●    Annual Frontiers Report 2022 = 1. Released by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) 2. The Frontiers report identifies and offers solutions to three environmental issues: urban noise pollution, wildfires and phenological shifts 3. Chronic annoyance and sleep disturbance caused by traffic can result in severe heart diseases and metabolic disorders with the very young 4. The trends towards more dangerous fire-weather conditions are likely to increase due to rising concentrations of atmospheric greenhouse gasses and the attendant escalation of wildfire risk factors 5. Plants and animals in terrestrial, aquatic and marine ecosystems use temperature, day length or rainfall as cues for when to bear fruit, migrate or transform in other ways- However, climate change disrupts these natural rhythms as plants and animals are being pushed out of sync with their natural rhythms, leading to mismatches

6. Phenology is the timing of recurring life cycle stages 7. Recommendations of the Report: Appreciating and adopting indigenous fire management techniques, A preventive approach, rather than reactive approach by engaging vulnerable groups, Focus on remote-sensing capabilities
●    International Intellectual Property Index 2022 = 1. India has improved its overall International Intellectual Property (IIP) score from 38.4% to 38.6%, and the country is ranked 43rd out of 55 countries 2. It is an annual report compiled by the US Chambers of Commerce 3. This year (2022) the index is topped by the US with 95.4% 4. In its eighth edition, the Index maps the IP ecosystem in 53 global economies, representing over 90% of global Gross Domestic Product 5. The Index evaluates the IP framework in each economy across 50 unique indicators 6. US Chamber of Commerce-  world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations

 

Defence

 

●    BrahMos = 1. Philippines has signed a deal with BrahMos Aerospace Private Ltd. for the supply of a shore-based anti-ship variant of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile 2. First export order for the missile, a joint product of India and Russia 3. BrahMos is a joint venture between the Defence Research and Development Organisation of India (DRDO) and the NPOM of Russia 4. Named on the rivers Brahmaputra and Moskva

5. Two-stage (solid propellant engine in the first stage and liquid ramjet in second) missile 6. It is a multiplatform missile i.e it can be launched from land, air, and sea 7. It operates on the "Fire and Forgets" principle 8. Brahmos is one of the fastest cruise missiles currently operationally deployed with speed of Mach 2.8 9. Following India’s entry into the MTCR (Missile Technology Control Regime) club in June 2016, the range is planned to be extended to 450 km and to 600km at a later stage 10. The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) ranked India at number 23 in the list of major arms exporters for 2015-2019
●    Operation Sadbhawana = 1. Launched by the Indian Army in Jammu and Kashmir 2. To help people affected by terrorism in the region 3. It works to reduce the proxy wars fought by Pakistan in the region 4. Proxy wars are conflicts fought by the terrorist groups on behalf of the government; Pakistan government pays money and supplies ammunition to the terrorist groups to fight such wars in the Kashmir region 5. Operation mainly focuses on five areas infrastructure development, education, community development projects, women and youth empowerment, health and sanitation


●    Marine version of Rafale = 1. Recently successfully tested on INS Vikrant 2. The INS Vikrant aircraft carrier uses a catapult launch 3. The catapult is a device that allows the aircraft to take off in a small space 4. The catapult accelerates the aircraft from 0 to 165 knots in just 2 to 3 seconds 5. In this system, high-pressure steam is collected in the accumulators 6. This steam is obtained from the nuclear reactors
●    Konkurs-M Anti-Tank Guided Missiles = 1. Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) and the Indian Army signed a contract to manufacture and supply Konkurs-M anti-tank guided missiles 2. The Konkurs-M anti-tank guided missiles are being manufactured by BDL as a part of license agreement with the Russian Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) 3. It is a second-generation, mechanized infantry anti-tank guided missile

4. The missile can be launched either from a BMP-II tank or from a ground launcher 5. It has a range of 75 to 4000 metres 5. Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) was established in 1970 in Hyderabad, Telangana, established to be a manufacturing base for guided weapon systems
●    Ban on Drone Import = 1. Union government put a ban on the import of drones other than for security, research and defence purposes 2. To promote ‘Made in India’ drones 3. Government announced a Rs 120-crore Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme, It liberalised drone operation rules
●    First National Maritime Security Coordinator (NMSC) = 1. The government has appointed Vice Admiral (retd) G Ashok Kumar as the nation’s first national maritime security coordinator with the view of strengthening the country’s maritime security 2. Last year, the security cabinet committee had given its approval for the creation of the said post 3. The NMSC works in tandem with the National Security Council which is headed by Ajit Doval (NSA) 4. About Vice Admiral (retd) G Ashok Kumar served as the nation’s 35th Navy Vice Chief


●    MH-60R = 1. First batch of three MH-60R Multi-Role Helicopters is likely to arrive India by July 2022 2. Indian Navy had ordered from the United States 3. India signed a deal of worth USD 2.2 billion to purchase Lockheed Martin’s MH-60R helicopters, during the visit of then-US President Donald Trump to India in February 2020 4. All deliveries should be completed by 2025 5. A case is also being prepared to purchase six Kamov Ka-31 early warning helicopters
●    Presidential Fleet Review = 1. President Ram Nath Kovind conducted a Fleet Review of Indian Navy in Visakhapatnam 2. President Ram Nath Kovind conducted a Fleet Review of the Indian Navy in Visakhapatnam 3. First Fleet Review was hosted in 2006 by the then President of India APJ Abdul Kalam 4. The Fleet Review is done with the aim of assuring the country of preparedness, high morale and discipline of Indian Navy 5. Being the Supreme Commander of Indian armed forces, the President of India takes stock of capabilities of Navy in the Fleet Review
●    C-Dome Defence System = 1. A new naval air defence system named ‘C-Dome’ has been successfully tested by Israel 2. The C-Dome is a naval variant of the Iron Dome of Israel 3. The Iron Dome is a missile system of Israel that is used to destroy and intercept missiles and rockets of short-range from the Gaza Strip 4. The C-Dome missile system will be incorporated into the missile defence system of Israel which has weapons capable of intercepting long-range missiles as well as short-range rockets 5. Israel Aerospace Industries and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems created the Iron Dome missile system which is a deployable all-weather air defence system of the country
●    Eastern Bridge-VI Air Exercise = 1. Indian Air Force (IAF) and Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO) 2. To bolster operational efficiency through interoperability 3. Bilateral exercise between India and Oman is being organised after Oman’s top defence official Mohammed Nasser Al Zaabi officially visited India recently 4. Oman is among one of the strongest defence partners of India in Gulf region 5. Oman also provides operational support to Indian Navy in Arabian Sea 6. India has access to the Duqm port
●    ‘Milan’ Multilateral Naval Exercise = 1. ‘Milan’ is the name of the multilateral naval exercise which is hosted by the Indian Navy 2. This is a biennial exercise and features seminars, sports, social events, and professional exercises among the participating nations 3. This exercise was started in the year 1995 4. Along with the Indian Navy, the navies of Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand and Sri Lanka had participated in the inaugural edition of this exercise 5. All editions of Milan were held in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands 6. The Navy, in 2020, announced that the next edition of Milan will be held at Visakhapatnam, under the Eastern Naval Command 7. This year’s Milan Exercise will be the largest edition of this exercise with 46 countries invited to participate 8. The QUAD countries will also be participating 9. The theme for this year’s exercise is ‘Camaraderie – Cohesion – Collaboration’


●    Dharma Guardian Exercise = 1. An Indo-Japan Joint Military Exercise that began in 2018 2. The latest edition of this exercise will begin from 27 February to 10 March 2022 and will be conducted at Foreign Training Node, Belagavi, Karnataka 3. Special emphasis will be given to enhancing the tactical skills required to fight global terrorism and on enhancing the two forces’ interoperability
●    P-8I Patrol Aircraft = 1. Aircraft manufacturer Boeing has delivered the 12th P-8I long-range maritime patrol aircraft to the Indian Navy 2. A long-range Maritime Reconnaissance and Anti-Submarine Warfare Aircraft 3. It is an Indian variant of the P-8A Poseidon aircraft that Boeing Company developed as a replacement for the US Navy’s ageing P-3 fleet 4. With a maximum speed of 907 kmph and an operating range of over 1,200 nautical miles, the P-8Is detect threats and neutralize them 5. The aircraft are part of the 312A Naval Air Squadron based at Arakkonam in Tamil Nadu

 

Miscellaneous

 

•    Chauri Chaura = 1. 100 Years of Chauri Chaura Incident 2. Chauri Chaura is a town in Gorakhpur district of Uttar Pradesh 3. On 4th February 1922, this town witnessed a violent incident - a large crowd of peasants set fire to a police station that killed 22 policemen 4. Due to this incident, Mahatma Gandhi called off the Non-Cooperation Movement (1920-22) 5. On 4th February, volunteers congregated in the town, and after the meeting, proceeded in a procession to the local police station, and to picket the nearby Mundera bazaar 6. The police fired into the crowd killing some people and injuring many volunteers


•    Vande Bharat Trains = 1. The Union Budget for 2022-2023 proposed the development and manufacture of 400 new Vande Bharat trains in the next three years 2. It is an indigenously designed and manufactured semi high speed, self-propelled train that is touted as the next major leap for the Indian Railways in terms of speed and passenger convenience since the introduction of Rajdhani trains 3. The first Vande Bharat was manufactured by the Integral Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai 4. Currently, two Vande Bharat Expresses are operational —one between New Delhi and Varanasi and the other from New Delhi to Katra 5. It can achieve a maximum speed of 160 kmph due to faster acceleration and deceleration, reducing journey time by 25% to 45%


•    Powerthon-2022 = 1. Launched by the Ministry of Power 2. It is a hackathon competition under RDSS (Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme) to find technology driven solutions to solve the complex problems in power distribution 3. RDSS was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs in July 2021 to improve the operational efficiencies and financial sustainability of discoms (excluding Private Sector DISCOMs) 4. All the existing power sector reforms schemes such as Integrated Power Development Scheme, Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana, and Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana will be merged into this umbrella program

5. The scheme will be available till 2025-26
•    Atal Tunnel = 1. Officially been certified by World Book of Records as the ‘World’s Longest Highway Tunnel above 10,000 Feet’ 2. Built by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) 3. The 9.02-km tunnel is the longest highway tunnel in the world above the height of 3,000 metres 4. It cuts through a mountain west of the Rohtang pass and shortens the distance between Solang Valley and Sissu 5. Rohtang Pass (elevation 3,978 m) is located in the state of Himachal Pradesh


•    5th National Award for IGPEA = 1. The Ministry of Education presented the 5th National Award for Innovations and Good Practices in Educational Administration (IGPEA) 2. The National Institute of Educational Planning and Administration (NIEPA) has instituted the National Award for IGPEA for District and Block Level Education Officers 3. It was launched by NIEPA in 2014 with an aim to encourage innovations and good practices in educational administration at grassroot level 4.  Objectives: To recognise innovative ideas and practices adopted by the district and block level education officers


•    Maharaja Surajmal = 1. The Prime Minister has paid tributes to Maharaja Surajmal on his Jayanti 2. He ruled in the 18th century and was the son of the Jat chieftain Badan Singh 3. He was described as "the Plato of the Jat people" and by a modern writer as the "Jat Odysseus", because of his political sense, steady intellect and clear vision 4. Maharaja Surajmal considered farmers as the most important section of the society and had a lot of respect for them 5. Some institutions that have been named after him include the Maharaja Surajmal Institute of Technology and Maharaja Surajmal Brij University, Bharatpur 6. Surajmal had built the impregnable Lohagarh Fort, which the British could not penetrate even after attacking 13 times 7. This is the only fort in the country, which has always been impenetrable


•    River Devika project = 1. Jammu and Kashmir 2. Built at the cost of over Rs 190 crore, will be complete by June, 2022 3. The work on the project was started in March 2019 under the National River Conservation Plan (NRCP) 4. Devika river originates from the hilly Suddha Mahadev temple in Udhampur district of Jammu and Kashmir and flows down towards western Punjab (now in Pakistan) where it merges with the Ravi river 5. The river holds religious significance as it is revered by Hindus as the sister of river Ganga 6. NRCP is a centrally funded scheme launched in 1995 aimed at preventing the pollution of rivers


•    Tarapur Massacre of Bihar = 1. Bihar Chief Minister has announced that 15th February would be commemorated as “Shahid Diwas” 2. In memory of the 34 freedom fighters who were killed by police in Tarapur town (now subdivision) of Bihar’s Munger district 90 years ago 3. On 15th February, 1932, a group of young freedom fighters planned to hoist an Indian national flag at Thana Bhawan in Tarapur 4. The police responded by opening indiscriminate fire on the crowd
•    Shivaji Jayanti = 1. Celebrated each year on 19th February 2. To remember and praise his courage, warfare tactics and administrative skills 3. In 1870, social reformer Mahatma Jyotirao Phule initiated the celebration Shiv Jayanti in Pune 4. He was born on 19th February, 1630 at Shivneri Fort in District Pune 5. He raided Mughal territory near Ahmednagar and in Junnar, 1657 6. In June 1665, the Treaty of Purandar was signed between Shivaji and Raja Jai Singh I (representing Aurangzeb) 7. He took on the titles of Chhatrapati, Shakakarta, Kshatriya Kulavantas and Haindava Dharma Dharak


•    International Mother Language Day = 1. Every year, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) celebrates 21st February as International Mother Language Day 2. To promote mother tongue-based multilingual education 3. Theme of 2022: Using technology for multilingual learning: Challenges and opportunities 4. The world has over 7,000 languages whereas India alone has about 22 officially recognized languages, 1635 mother tongues, and 234 identifiable mother tongues 5. The UN has designated the period between 2022 and 2032 as the International Decade of Indigenous Languages 6. The Yuelu Proclamation, made by UNESCO at Changsha (China) in 2018, plays a central role in guiding the efforts of countries and regions around the world to protect linguistic resources and diversity
•    Ayush Start-up Challenge = 1. Launched by All India Institute of Ayurveda (AIIA) in association with Startup India 2. It was launched to encourage start-ups and individuals working on innovations in the field of Ayurveda and alternative healing 3. The winners of ‘Ayush Start-up Challenge’ will receive both a cash prize and incubation support from the AIIA 4. 3 entry categories for participating start-ups: Ayush Food Innovations, Ayush Bio-instrumentation (Hardware solutions), Ayush IT Solutions (Software solutions)
•    Bhasha Certificate Selfie Campaign = 1. The Ministry of Education launched a campaign ‘Bhasha Certificate Selfie under Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat (EBSB) 2. To encourage cultural diversity and promote multilingualism and to foster the spirit EBSB 3. Bhasha Sangam mobile app was launched on Rashtriya Ekta Diwas 2021 (31st October) 4. Bhasha Sangam Initiative is an initiative to teach basic sentences of everyday usage in 22 Indian languages (Eighth Schedule languages), developed by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)
•    World NGO Day = 1. Every year, 27th February is observed as the World NGO day all over the world 2. India has over three million Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) 3. The day assumed its official status when 12-member countries of the IX Baltic Sea NGO Forum on 17th April 2010 formally recognised it 4. It was only in 2014, that for the first time World NGO Day was observed by the United Nations 5. Earlier, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) cancelled the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA), 2010 registration of various Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
•    National Science Day 2022 = 1. National Science Day (NSD) is celebrated annually on 28th February to commemorate the discovery of the Raman Effect by Nobel laureate and Physicist CV Raman on this day in 1928 2. The day aims to propagate the message of the importance of science and its application among the people 3. The Nodal Agency to support celebration of NSD is the National Council for Science & Technology Communication (NCSTC) of the Ministry of Science and Technology 4. Theme 2022: "Integrated Approach in science and technology for Sustainable Future"
•    Kerala’s first Caravan Park = 1. To come up in Vagamon, a scenic hill station located in the Idukki district 2. To meet the rising demands and preferences of tourists in the post-pandemic world, Kerala had announced a comprehensive, stakeholder-friendly Caravan Tourism Policy, promising the visitors a safe, customized, and closest-to-nature travel experience 3. Under the initiative, there will be two types of caravans
•    Water Taxi Service = 1. Union Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways & AYUSH, Sarbananda Sonowal virtually flagged off the ‘Most Awaited’ Water Taxi for citizens of Mumbai, Maharashtra 2. The Water Taxi services will commence from the Domestic Cruise Terminal (DCT) and will also connect nearby locations at Nerul, Belapur, Elephanta island and JNPT


•    Maru Mahotsav = 1. The renowned Jaisalmer Desert Festival, also known as Maru Mahotsav of the Golden City started from 13 to 16 February 2022 at Pokaran village in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan 2. It is a four-day-long annual event started with a colorful grand procession followed by Miss Pokaran and Mister Pokran competitions 3. Regional folk dances such as Kalbelia, Kachhi Ghodi, Gair will be performed
•    Torgya Festival = 1. Celebrated in Arunachal Pradesh 2. The three days long Torgya Festival of the Monpa tribal community of Arunachal Pradesh 3. The main attraction of the festival is the ‘Sha-na Cham’, the ritual dance performed by monks to showcase the Choe-Gyal Yap & Yum Tsa-Munde deity 4. This year is the ‘Dungyur Torgya’ festival, which marks a special occasion as every 3rd year
•    First geological park of India = 1. Will be built in Lamheta, Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh 2. Approval for the park was given by the Geological Survey of India, under the ministry of mining 3. The geological park will be built in Lamheta, because this place is among significant places in the world, from the geological point of view 4. UNESCO has also recognised Lamheta as a geo heritage site 5. Lameta Formation is also called Infratrappean Beds
•    Pooja Jatyan = 1. Became 1st Indian to win silver in Para Archery World Championships 2. She lost to Italy’s Patrilli Vincenza in the final to be content with the silver medal


•    Sadia Tariq = 1. Indian Wushu player Sadia Tariq has won a gold medal in the junior tournament at the Moscow Wushu Stars Championship 2022 2. The 15-year-old Sadia Tariq hails from Srinagar in Jammu & Kashmir
•    Cyclone Emnati = 1. Wreaked havoc on Madagascar 2. The storm, which passed just north of the Indian Ocean islands of Reunion and Mauritius, had slightly weakened by the time it approached Madagascar’s eastern coast 3. A tropical cyclone is a rapidly rotating storm with a center of low-pressure, strong winds, a closed low-level atmospheric circulation, and a spiral arrangement of thunderstorms causing heavy squalls (sudden violent wind gusts) or rain