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Micro Current Affairs March 2022 PDF

Date: 31 March 2022

 

Indian Economy

 

•    MSME Innovative Scheme = 1. The MSME Ministry launched the MSME Innovative Scheme with the combination of existing sub-schemes around incubation, design, and intellectual property rights (IPR) for MSMEs 2. Would act as a hub for innovation activities facilitating and guiding the development of ideas into viable business propositions that can benefit society directly and can be marketed successfully
 
•    Dollar-Rupee Swap = 1. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) conducted a $ 5 billion dollar-rupee swap auction as part of its liquidity management initiative 2. Leading to infusion of dollars and sucking out of the rupee from the financial system 3. This move will reduce the pressure on inflation and strengthen the rupee 4. It’s a Forex tool whereby the central bank uses its currency to buy another currency or vice versa


•    Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) = 1. Madhabi Puri Buch has been appointed as its new chairperson 2. The first woman to head the market regulator, She will hold the position for three years 3. SEBI is a Statutory Body (a Non-Constitutional body which is set up by a Parliament) established on 12th April, 1992 4. In accordance with the provisions of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 5. The headquarters of SEBI is situated in Mumbai 6. The regional offices of SEBI are located in Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Chennai and Delhi 7. The basic functions of SEBI is to protect the interests of investors in securities and to promote and regulate the securities market  


•    Minimum Assured Return Scheme (MARS) = 1. Proposed by Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) 2. A guaranteed return scheme 3. It will provide savers and people from the salaried class an option for their investments 4. This will be the first scheme from the pension regulator that will offer a guaranteed return to investors 5. PFRDA is the statutory authority established by an enactment of the Parliament, to regulate, promote and ensure orderly growth of the National Pension System (NPS)


•    Virtual SGKC = 1. The Union Minister for Power has launched the first Virtual Smart Grid Knowledge Center (Virtual SGKC) and Innovation Park 2. Located within the power grid centre in Manesar (Haryana) 3. Aims to be one of the leading Centers of Excellence globally to foster innovation, entrepreneurship and research in smart grid technologies 4. Smart Grid is an Electrical Grid with Automation, Communication and IT systems that can monitor power flows from points of generation to points of consumption 5. Smart Grid is an Electrical Grid with Automation, Communication and IT systems that can monitor power flows from points of generation to points of consumption


•    UPI123Pay = 1. New UPI services for feature phones called UPI123Pay for non internet users to make digital payments 2. Launched by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) 3. Also launched a 24x7 helpline for digital payments called 'Digisaathi' 4. The UPI service will enable digital transactions through a mechanism of ‘on-device’ wallet in UPI applications
•    Current Account Deficit = 1. Morgan Stanley an American financial services company predicted- that the Current Account Deficit will widen to a 10-year high of 3% of GDP in FY23 2. A CAD occurs when the total value of goods and services a country imports exceeds the total value of goods and services it exports 3. The balance of exports and imports of goods is referred to as the trade balance 4. Trade Balance is a part of ‘Current Account Balance’ 5. High Oil Imports, High Gold Imports are the major driving force, widening the CAD 6. Balance of Payments- a systematic statement of all economic transactions of a country with the rest of the world during a specific period, usually one yea


•    Meri Fasal-Mera Byora e-procurement portal = 1. Launched by Hariyana Government 2. First state in India where as many as 14 crops are procured at the Minimum Support Price (MSP) 3. The portal seeks to provide an online sale facility, 81 mandis of the state have been linked with the e-NAM (electronic national agriculture market) portal 4. Food Corporation of India, the nodal central agency of the Government of India, along with other State Agencies undertakes procurement of wheat and paddy under a price support scheme


•    First Gati Shakti Cargo Terminal = 1. Commissioned in Asansol Division in pursuance of the Prime Minister’s vision “Gati Shakti” 2. To ensure integrated planning and implementation of infrastructure projects in the next four years 3. It also aims to have 11 industrial corridors and two new defence corridors - one in Tamil Nadu and other in Uttar Pradesh
•    WPI and CPI Inflation Rates = 1. Wholesale inflation in India rose to 13.11% while the retail inflation rate in India -measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI)- came in at 6.07% in February 2022 2. Wholesale Price Index- measures the changes in the prices of goods sold and traded, Published by the Office of Economic Adviser, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, base year of All-India WPI has been revised from 2004-05 to 2011-12 in 2017 3. Consumer Price Index- measures price changes from the perspective of a retail buyer, released by the National Statistical Office (NSO)


•    Wings India 2022 = 1. Ministry of Civil Aviation and FICCI is jointly organizing WINGS INDIA 2022 - Asia's largest event on Civil Aviation (Commercial, General and Business Aviation) 2. India's Civil Aviation is among the fastest-growing aviation markets globally 3. 3rd largest aviation market by domestic air passenger traffic which stood at 274.05 million in FY20 4. 75 airports opened in 75 years of Civil Aviation in India while under the aegis of Ude Desh Ka Aam Naagrik (UDAN) 5. 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) allowed under Automatic route for Ground Handling Services and Maintenance Repair and Overhaul Services (MRO) and for both green and brownfield projects 6. UDAN (Ude Desh Ka Aam Naagrik) Scheme- world's first Regional Connectivity Scheme to Connect un-served & Under-served airports at affordable prices contributing


•    Reserve Bank Innovation Hub (RBIH) = 1. Inaugurated in Bengaluru 2. Set up as a Section 8 company under the Companies Act, 2013 with an initial capital contribution of Rs. 100 crore 3. To create an ecosystem that focuses on promoting access to financial services and products for the low-income population in the country
•    Shrinkflation = 1. It is the practice of reducing the size of a product while maintaining its sticker price 2. It is a form of hidden inflation 3. Shrinkflation is also referred to as package downsizing in business and academic research

 

International

 

Indian Judges at ICJ
Four Indians have been members of the ICJ so far-
•    Justice Dalveer Bhandari, former judge of the Supreme Court, has been serving at the ICJ since 2012.
•    Former Chief Justice of India R S Pathak served from 1989-91,
•    Former Chief Election Commissioner of India Nagendra Singh from 1973-88.
•    Sir Benegal Rau, who was an advisor to the Constituent Assembly, was a member of the ICJ from 1952-53.
•    International Court of Justice & Genocide Convention = 1. Ukraine has filed an application before the International Court of Justice (ICJ), instituting proceedings against Russia 2. The dispute is concerning 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (the “Genocide Convention”) 3. The International Court of Justice is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations (UN) 4. Established in June 1945 by the Charter of the UN 5. Official Languages: English and French 6. The ICJ has 15 judges who are elected to nine-year terms by the UN General Assembly and Security Council 7. The Genocide Convention was the first human rights treaty adopted by the General Assembly of the UN on 9 December 1948


•    Permanent Indus Commission Meeting = 1. The 117th Meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission (PIC) between India and Pakistan was held 2. Discussed the exchange of hydrological and flood data 3. Pakistan assured that all necessary action will continue to be taken to ensure the free flow of Fazilka drain into the river Sutlej 4. Fazilka drain is one of 22 drains and water bodies, where untreated water of Malwa district (Punjab, India) is discharged 5. The Pakal Dul Hydro Electric Project (1000 MW) is proposed on river Marusudar, a tributary of Chenab river in the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir 6. Kiru Hydro Electric Project (624 MW) is proposed on River Chenab, located in Kishtwar district of Jammu & Kashmir 7. Lower Kalnai project is a hydroelectric power project in the Doda and Kishtwar districts of Jammu and Kashmir
 
•    Iran Nuclear Deal = 1. The diplomats from Iran and world powers reconvened in Vienna (Austria) to seek a deal reviving Iran’s (Tehran’s) 2015 Nuclear Accord 2. The 2015 Iran nuclear deal was signed under President Barack Obama and dismantled in 2018 by President Donald Trump 3. The deal, formally known as Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)
•    NATO = 1. North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) 2. Russia launched a military invasion of Ukraine due eastward expansion of NATO 3. The most recent member states to be added to NATO are Montenegro on 5 June 2017 and North Macedonia on 27 March 2020 4. As of 2022, NATO officially recognizes three states which have formally expressed their membership aspirations: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, and Ukraine 5. It is a military alliance established by the North Atlantic Treaty/Washington Treaty, April 1949 6. By the United States, Canada, and several Western European nations 7. To provide collective security against the Soviet Union 8. Currently 30 member states


•    International Commission of Inquiry = 1. On Russia’s actions in Ukraine 2. India abstained on a vote at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva 2. The Council moved the resolution to set up an international commission of enquiry 3. UN Human Rights Council- Inter-governmental body within the United Nations system, created by the United Nations General Assembly in 2006, made up of 47 United Nations Member States, strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights around the world
•    Humanitarian Corridors = 1. Russia-Ukraine War 2. Russia declared a temporary ceasefire to provide "humanitarian corridors" for civilians 3. A humanitarian corridor is a type of temporary demilitarized zone intended to allow the safe transit of humanitarian aid in, and/or refugees out of a crisis region 4. Such a corridor can also be associated with a no-fly zone or no-drive zone 5. Defined in resolution 45/100 of the UNs’ general assembly in 1990 as relief corridors


•    Financial Action Task Force (FATF) = 1. Retained Pakistan on its ‘greylist’ or 'increased monitoring list’ 2. An intergovernmental organisation founded in 1989 on the initiative of the G7 to develop policies to combat money laundering 3. To set standards and promote effective implementation of legal, regulatory, and operational measures for combating money laundering, terrorist financing, and other related threats to the integrity of the international financial system 4. Headquarters- Paris, France
•    India Japan Summit 2022 = 1. 14th India-Japan Annual Summit 2. Japanese Prime Minister was on an official visit to India 3. Two countries were celebrating the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations and India 4. Japan will invest Rs 3.2 lakh crores in the next five years in India 5. The two PMs affirmed the importance of bilateral and plurilateral partnerships among like-minded countries in the region including the QUAD grouping


•    Finlandization = 1. French President suggested Finlandization might be a realistic outcome for Ukraine 2. Finlandization is the process by which one powerful country makes a smaller neighboring country refrains from opposing the former's foreign policy rules while allowing it to keep its nominal independence and its own political system 3.  The term means "to become like Finland" referring to the influence of the Soviet Union on Finland's policies during the Cold War


•    India-UAE CEPA = 1. Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between India and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) got finalized 2. Was signed on 18th February 2022 3. CEPA provides for an institutional mechanism to encourage and improve trade 4. India will benefit from preferential market access provided by the UAE, especially for all labour-intensive sectors  
•    National College for Policing and Law Enforcement (NCPLE) = 1. Inaugurated by India’s External Affairs Minister during his two day visit to the Maldives 2. One of India's largest funded projects in the island nation - in the Maldives' Addu City 3. It will enhance cooperation between the two countries in tackling these issues


•    Fifth BIMSTEC Summit = 1. Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), Took place in Colombo, Sri Lanka (Host for the Fifth Summit) 2. A regional organisation comprising seven Member States: five deriving from South Asia, including Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and two from Southeast Asia, including Myanmar and Thailand

 

Science & Technology

 

•    Daylight Harvesting = 1. The Ministry of Science & Technology has decided to promote a unique Start-up in the latest Daylight Harvesting Technology 2. To reduce carbon footprint and improve the building's energy efficiency 3. The Ministry will give Rs 5 Crore of the 10 Crore project to Skyshade company for developing new technologies for basement illumination on a 24x7 basis 4. Daylight Harvesting is a method of saving the energy costs associated with lighting 5. It makes use of the available sunlight 6. The solar energy spectrum has 45% energy as visible light and this can be used to harvest building illumination for about 9-11 hours a day

 
•    Host Country Agreement = 1. Signed between India and International Telecommunication Union (ITU) 2. For the establishment of an Area Office & Innovation Centre of ITU in New Delhi 3. The 5Gi standards developed within India have now been recognized by ITU as one of the three technologies for 5G 4. 5Gi is a locally designed telecommunication network, designed by IIT Hyderabad 5. The Host Country Agreement provides the legal and financial framework for the establishment and operations of Area Office 6. The Area Office shall also have an Innovation Centre, which is expected to give impetus to research and development in telecommunication technologies in South Asia
International Telecommunication Union (ITU)
•    It is the United Nations specialized agency for Informatio n and Communication Technologies – ICTs.
•    Founded in 1865 to facilitate international connectivity in communications networks. 
•    It is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.


•    It allocates global radio spectrum and satellite orbits, develops the technical standards that ensure networks and technologies seamlessly interconnect.
•    India has remained a regular member since 1952
•    Important publication of the ITU is the Global Cybersecurity Index (GCI)
•    Low-energy security chip = 1. Built by Two Indian researchers working at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Saurav Maji and Utsav Bannerjee 2. Designed to prevent side-channel attacks (SCAs) on IoT (Internet of Things) devices 3. It is an application specific integrated circuit that instantiates the Security Feature after being embedded in the device
•    PARAM Ganga = 1. ‘Made in India’ Petascale supercomputer installed at IIT Roorkee under National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) 2. Supercomputing capacity of 1.66 PFLOPS (Peta Floating-Point Operations per Second) 3. Designed and commissioned by C-DAC under the National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) 4. National Supercomputing Mission (NSM)- a joint initiative of the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeiTY) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST), being implemented by the C-DAC and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore
•    Argon-40 on Moon = 1. Chandra's Atmospheric Composition Explorer-2 (CHACE-2), a payload onboard Chandrayaan-2 3. First-of-its-kind discovery on the distribution of one of the noble gases, Argon-40 4. Argon-40 (Ar-40) is an important tracer atom to study the dynamics of the lunar exospheric species 5. Noble gases are a group of the seven chemical elements that make up Group 18 (VIIIa) of the periodic table 6. The elements are helium (He), neon (Ne), argon (Ar), krypton (Kr), xenon (Xe), radon (Rn), and oganesson (Og) 7. Chandrayaan-2 Mission- an integrated 3-in-1 spacecraft consisting of an Orbiter of the Moon, Vikram (after Vikram Sarabhai) the lander and Pragyan (wisdom) the rover


•    International Space Station = 1. After Russia invaded Ukraine, the US imposed sanctions on Russia 2. Following this, the Russian space agency Roscosmos held that the State Corporation will not cooperate with Germany 3. ISS is built with the cooperation of scientists from five international space agencies — NASA of the US, Roscosmos of Russia, JAXA of Japan, Canadian Space Agency and the European Space Agency 4. The International Space Station is a modular space station in low Earth orbit
•    Green Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle = 1. Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways launched the world's most advanced technology, Green Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) Toyota Mirai 2. First of its kind project in India which aims to create a Green Hydrogen based ecosystem in the country 3. Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV), powered by Hydrogen is one of the best Zero Emission solutions  


•    Deep Ocean Mission = 1. Launched by Ministry of Earth Sciences 2. DOM is a mission mode project to support the Blue Economy Initiatives 3. Blue economy essentially refers to the multitude of ocean resources available in the country that can be harnessed to aid the production of goods and services because of its linkages with economic growth, environmental sustainability, and national security 4. Oceans, which cover 70% of the globe, remain a key part of our life. About 95% of the Deep Ocean remains unexplored 5. India's 7517 km long coastline is home to nine coastal states and 1382 islands
•    NASA’s Artemis Program = 1. NASA rolled out its Artemis I moon mission to the launch pad for testing at the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, United States 2. Touted as the next generation of lunar exploration, and is named after the twin sister of Apollo from Greek mythology 3. Artemis is also the goddess of the moon 4. Will enable human exploration to the Moon and Mars 5. With the Artemis programme, NASA aims to land humans on the moon by 2024, and it also plans to land the first woman and first person of colour on the moon
•    Defence Space Command Agency = 1. Australia has announced a new Defence Space Command Agency 2. To counter the growing influence of Russia and China in space 3. The agency will provide training to people to become space specialists, help conduct strategic space planning 4. Space Command Structures around the World-  Spacecom - US Space Force. Defence Space Agency (DSA) - India, Joint Space Command (France), Iranian Space Command (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Aerospace Force), Russian Space Forces (Russian Aerospace Forces) and United Kingdom Space Command (Royal Air Force)


•    Solar Jets = 1. Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA) Scientists unraveled the science behind the jets of plasma on the Sun’s chromosphere 2. Solar jets are bursts of plasma coming off the Sun 3. Studying solar jets contributes to a better understanding of our closest star, the Sun, and how its energy impacts conditions on Earth 4. Sun's chromosphere- the atmospheric layer just above the Sun's visible surface 5. IIA is an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology 6. Plasma is a hot, charged gas made of positive ions and free-moving electrons 7. That has unique properties distinct from solids, liquids and gases

 

Polity & Governance

 

•    Article 80 of the Constitution of India = 1. Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has approved a proposal to amend Article 80 of the Constitution 2. So that its councilors could send a representative to the Rajya Sabha 3. Article 80 deals with the composition of the council of states also called the Upper House and Rajya Sabha (Upper House) 4. Chandigarh has no representation in the Rajya Sabha 5. Chandigarh is a Union Territory without any legislative assembly and has a seat of Member of Parliament (MP) in the Lower House (Lok Sabha) or House of the People 6. The union territories of Puducherry, Jammu and Kashmir and the National Capital Territory of Delhi have representation in the Rajya Sabha, while Ladakh, Chandigarh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli — Daman and Diu, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep are unrepresented in the upper house


•    Sagar Parikrama = 1. Inaugurated by the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying 2. To know the problems of Coastal Fisher folk 3. It is a navigation journey to be conducted in all coastal states/UTs through a pre-decided sea route to demonstrate solidarity with all fisherfolk 4. The Parikrama will start from Mandvi, Gujarat  in Ist phase 5. The first leg of ‘Sagar Parikrama’ shall start on 5th March 2022 from Mandvi and end at Porbandar on 6th March 2022 6. India is the second major producer of fish through aquaculture in the world 7. India is the 4th largest exporter of fish in the world as it contributes 7.7% to the global fish production


•    SAMARTH Initiative = 1. A Special Entrepreneurship Promotion Drive for Women 2. Launched by Union Minister for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) on the occasion of International Women’s Day 2022 3. Benefits for women- 20% Seats in free Skill Development Programs organised under skill development schemes of the Ministry will be allocated for Women, 20% of MSME Business Delegations sent to domestic & international exhibitions under the schemes for Marketing Assistance implemented by the Ministry will be dedicated to women-owned MSMEs, 20% Discount on annual processing fee on National Small Industries Corporation’s (NSIC) Commercial Schemes, Special Drive for registration of women-owned MSMEs under Udyam Registration 4.  More than 7500 women candidates from rural and sub- urban areas will be trained in the FY 2022-23

•    eCourts Project = 1. Need to adopt new cutting edge technologies of Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to increase the efficiency of the justice delivery system 2. eCourts Project was conceptualized with a vision to transform the Indian Judiciary by ICT (Information and Communication Technology) enablement of Courts 3. It is a pan-India Project, monitored and funded by the Department of Justice, Ministry of Law and Justice 4. For the District Courts across the country 5. To provide efficient & time-bound citizen-centric services delivery


•    Artificial intelligence (AI) is the ability of a computer or a robot controlled by a computer to do tasks that are usually done by humans because they require human intelligence and discernment.
•    Machine learning (ML) is a type of artificial intelligence (AI) that allows software applications to become more accurate at predicting outcomes without being explicitly programmed to do so.


•    Swatantrata Sainik Samman Yojana (SSSY) = 1. Centre has approved the continuation 2. Under this freedom fighters and their eligible dependents are given pensions and other financial benefits, till 2025-26 3.  Government of India introduced the 'Ex-Andaman Political Prisoners Pension Scheme' in 1969 4. To honor the freedom fighters who had been incarcerated in the Cellular Jail at Port Blair 5. The scheme provides for a monthly Samman Pension to freedom fighters 6. On their demise, pension is provided to their eligible dependents viz. spouses and thereafter, unmarried and unemployed daughters and dependent parents 7. Implemented by the Ministry of Home Affairs (Freedom Fighters Division)


•    Tapi-Par-Narmada Link Project = 1. Tribals in Gujarat will hold a public meeting in Kaprada in Valsad district to protest against the Centre’s Par Tapi Narmada river-linking project 2. The Par Tapi Narmada link project was envisioned under the 1980 National Perspective Plan under the former Union Ministry of Irrigation and the Central Water Commission (CWC) 3. The project proposes to transfer river water from the surplus regions of the Western Ghats to the deficit regions of Saurashtra and Kutch 4. It proposes to link three rivers — Par, originating from Nashik in Maharashtra and flowing through Valsad, Tapi from Saputara which flows through Maharashtra and Surat in Gujarat, and Narmada originating in Madhya Pradesh and flowing through Maharashtra and Bharuch and Narmada districts in Gujarat 5. The link mainly includes the construction of seven dams (Jheri, Mohankavchali, Paikhed, Chasmandva, Chikkar, Dabdar and Kelwan), three diversion weirs (Paikhed, Chasmandva, and Chikkar dams), two tunnels (5.0 kilometers and 0.5 kilometers length), the 395-kilometer long canal (205 kilometres in Par-Tapi portion including the length of feeder canals and 190 km in Tapi-Narmada portion), and six powerhouses 6. The districts where the project will be implemented are largely dominated, by tribals who fear displacement


•    Draft National Medical Devices Policy 2022 = 1. Released by Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP), Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers 2. To reduce India’s dependence on import of high-end medical devices 3. Features- Regulatory streamlining, Building Competitiveness, Infrastructure Development, Facilitating R&D and Innovation, Human Resource Development, Awareness Creation and Brand Positioning 4. Medical devices sector in India is a multi-product sector, with the following broad classifications: (a) Electronics Equipment, (b) Implants, (c) Consumables and Disposables, (d) In Vitro Diagnostics (IVDs) reagents, and (e) Surgical Instruments 5. The Medical Devices industry in India is valued at USD 5.2 billion, contributing about 4-5% to the USD 96.7 billion Indian healthcares Industry 6. India is one of the top twenty markets for medical devices in the world and is the 4th largest market in Asia after Japan, China, and South Korea 7. The US, Germany, China, Japan, and Singapore constitute the five largest exporters of high technology medical equipment to India


•    National Crime Records Bureau = 1. 37th Foundation Day of NCRB was celebrated (11th March 1986) 2. Headquartered in New Delhi, was set-up in 1986 under the Ministry of Home Affairs 3. To function as a repository of information on crime and criminals so as to assist the investigators in linking crime to the perpetrators 4. Set up based on the recommendations of the National Police Commission (1977-1981) 5. Major Publications: Crimes in India, Accidental Deaths and Suicides, Prison Statistics, Reports on Missing Women and children in India
•    Disaster Management Plan of Ministry of Panchayati Raj = 1. Released by Ministry of Panchayati Raj  2. Prepared with a larger perspective of community-based planning starting from Village to District Panchayat level 3. Indian village would have a “Village Disaster Management Plan” and every Panchayat would have their Disaster Management Plan 4. To build disaster resilience at the grassroots level among the Panchayats and establish a framework to align the disaster management measures in rural areas 5. Covers areas- Institutional arrangement for Disaster Management, Hazard Risk, Vulnerability and Capacity Analysis, Coherence of Disaster Risk Management, Disaster Specific Preventive and Mitigation Measures-Responsibility Framework
•    National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) = 1. NPPA may allow a price hike of over 10% in the drugs and devices listed under the National List of Essential Medicines (NLEM) 2. NPPA was constituted by the Government of India in 1997 as an attached office of the Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP), Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers 3. As an independent Regulator for pricing of drugs and to ensure availability and accessibility of medicines at affordable prices 4. All medicines under the NLEM are under price regulation 4. The annual change in prices of scheduled drugs is controlled and rarely crosses 5%
•    Ol Chiki script = 1. India’s Constitution has been translated into Ol Chiki script for the first time 2. Also known as Ol Chemetʼ, Ol Ciki, Ol, and sometimes as the Santali alphabet 3. Official writing system for Santhali, an Austroasiatic language recognized as an official regional language in India 4. In 2003, the 92nd Constitutional Amendment Act added Santhali to Schedule VIII to the Constitution of India 5. According to the 2011 Census of India, there are over 70 lakh people who speak Santali across the country 6. Santhals are the largest scheduled tribe in the Jharkhand state


•    National Commission for Scheduled Tribes = 1. According to a parliamentary committee's recent report, the NCST has been dysfunctional for the last four years 2. Not delivered a single report to Parliament 3. it is a constitutional body 4. Article 338A inter-alia gives powers to the NCST to oversee the implementation of various safeguards provided to STs
•    Criminal Procedure (Identification) Bill, 2022 = 1. Introduced in Lok Sabha 2. It would allow the police and prison authorities to collect, store and analyse physical and biological samples, including retina and iris scans 3. Police personnel up to the rank of Head Constable have been authorised to record the measurements

 

Environment

 

•    Wet Bulb Temperature = 1. Part 2 of the sixth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2. Emphasized on the trend in the ‘Wet Bulb’ Temperature in South Asia 3. Wet bulb temperature is the lowest temperature to which air can be cooled by the evaporation of water into the air at a constant pressure 4. WBT is a limit that considers heat and humidity beyond which humans cannot tolerate high temperatures 5. The Wet Bulb temperature is the temperature of adiabatic saturation 6. The Dry Bulb temperature, usually referred to as "air temperature", is the air property that is most commonly used


•    Dugong Conservation Reserve = 1. Tamil Nadu government has decided to go ahead with the establishment of India's first conservation reserve for the Dugong in Gulf of Mannar, Palk Bay 2. Dugong (Dugong dugon) also called ‘Sea Cow’ is one of the four surviving species in the Order Sirenia 3. It is the only existing species of herbivorous mammal that lives exclusively in the sea including in India 4. They are found in over 30 countries and in India are seen in the Gulf of Mannar, Gulf of Kutch, Palk Bay, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands 5. IUCN Red List status: Vulnerable 6. Wild (Life) Protection Act, 1972: Schedule I
•    Project Dolphin = 1. Slow pace of the approval process 2. The initiative got in-principle approval in 2019 at the first meeting of the National Ganga Council (NGC), headed by the Prime Minister 3. Project Dolphin is one of the activities planned under Arth Ganga 4. It is expected to be implemented by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change


•    The Rhine Action Plan (1987) of the International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine (ICPR) .
•    Representing Switzerland, France, Germany, Luxemburg and the Netherlands. 
•    Helped in the conservation of the salmon fish (also an indicator species).
•    India's Arctic Policy = 1. Unveiled by Ministry of Earth Science 2. Title- India and the Arctic: building a partnership for sustainable development 3. India holds one of the 13 positions as the Observer in the Arctic Council 4. Six Central Pillars: Science and research, Environmental protection, Economic and human development, Transportation and connectivity, Governance and international cooperation and National capacity building 5. The Arctic region is significant due to the shipping routes that run through it 6. The Arctic is a polar region located at the northernmost part of Earth, consists of the Arctic Ocean, adjacent seas, and parts of Alaska (United States), Canada, Finland, Greenland (Denmark), Iceland, Norway, Russia, and Sweden 7. The Arctic Council is the leading intergovernmental forum promoting cooperation, coordination and interaction among the Arctic States, Arctic indigenous communities and other Arctic inhabitants on common Arctic issues


•    Great Barrier Reef = 1.  Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Report 2. The Great Barrier Reef is in crisis and suffering grave impacts from climate change 3. The Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef system 4. Located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, Australia 5. World's biggest single structure made by living organisms 6. Selected as a World Heritage Site in 1981 7. Thirty species of cetaceans have been recorded in the Great Barrier Reef, including the dwarf minke whale, Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin, and the humpback whale
 
•    Himalayan Griffons = 1. Himalayan Griffons died of suspected poisoning in Assam 2. The Himalayan Griffon Vulture, Gyps himalayensis, is an Old World vulture in the family Accipitridae, which also includes eagles, kites, buzzards and hawks 3. It has a white neck ruff and yellow bill and the whitish body and wing coverts contrast with the dark flight feathers 4. IUCN Red List: Near Threatened (NT) 5. Lives in the Himalayas on the Tibetan plateau (India, Nepal and Bhutan, central China and Mongolia) 6. India has nine species of vultures in the wild. These are the Oriental White-backed Vulture (Gyps bengalensis)


•    Mercury Pollution = 1. Indonesia has introduced a global declaration to tackle the illegal trade of mercury 2. Indonesia is hosting the fourth Conference of Parties (COP4) to the Minamata Convention on Mercury in  Nusa Dua, Bali 3. It is a global treaty to protect human health and the environment from the adverse effects of mercury and its compounds 4. India has ratified Convention 5. Mercury is a naturally occurring element that is found in air, water and soil 6. Even small amounts – may cause serious health problems 7. Minamata Disease: caused by methylmercury poisoning, first described in the inhabitants of Minamata Bay, Japan, characterized by peripheral sensory loss, tremors, and both hearing and visual loss 8. Sources- Volcanic eruptions and emissions from the ocean, Anthropogenic (human-caused) emissions
•    World Sparrow Day = 1. Observed every year on 20th March 2. To raise awareness and protect the house sparrows 3. The first World Sparrow Day was organized in 2010 4. Theme for 2022: I love sparrows 5. House sparrows were a common sight in our backyards, and they were easy to see 6. Reasons for the Decline: Increasing pollution, urbanization, global warming, and vanishing ecological resources


•    Africa’s Boma Technique = 1. Undertaken at Keoladeo National Park in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur district for capturing chitals or spotted deer and translocating them to Mukundara Hills Tiger Reserve 2. The IUCN Red List Status of Chital is Least Concern 3. Boma capturing technique involves luring animals into an enclosure by chasing them through a funnel-like fencing 4. Keoladeo National Park is formerly known as the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, located in the State of Rajasthan, an UNESCO World Heritage and a Ramsar site
•    World Water Day 2022 = 1. Celebrated on 22nd March Every Year to highlight the importance of water 2. Aims to support the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 6: water and sanitation for all by 2030 2. Theme: Groundwater: making the invisible visible 3. While water covers almost 70% of the planet, freshwater only amounts to about 3% of it


•    ‘Sujalam 2.0’ Grey Water Recycling Project = 1. Launched by Ministry of Jal Shakti 2. A countrywide project to reuse greywater, or run-offs from kitchens, bathing, and laundry 3. The campaign would focus on the creation of institutional level greywater management assets in Panchayat Ghar, healthcare facilities, schools, Anganwadi Centres (AWCs), and community centres 4. Grey water is defined as wastewater that is produced from household processes (e.g. washing dishes, laundry and bathing) 5. Jal Shakti Abhiyan: Launched in 2019 to cover water-stressed districts, in 2021 it was taken to all rural and urban districts

 

Indices and Reports

 

•    State of India’s Environment Report 2022 = 1. Released by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) 2. An annual publication of the CSE, and Down To Earth (magazine) 3. Focuses on climate change, migration, health, and food systems 4. On the 17 Sustainable Development Goals adopted as part of the 2030 Agenda by 192 United Nations member states in 2015, India has dropped three places from last year’s ranking of 117 to 120 5. Pakistan is ranked 129th, Bhutan is ranked 75th, Sri Lanka is 87th, Nepal is 96th, and Bangladesh is 109th among South Asian countries 6. The states that are least prepared to meet the SDGs by the target year of 2030 are Jharkhand and Bihar 7. Among the states Kerala topped, with Tamil Nadu and Himachal Pradesh coming in second and third 8. Chandigarh topped among the Union Territories


•    Special bulletin on Maternal Mortality in India (2017-19) = 1. Released by Registrar General of India’s Sample Registration System (SRS) 2. Maternal death- As per the World Health Organisation death of a woman while pregnant or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy - from any cause related to or aggravated by the pregnancy or its management 3. Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR)- number of maternal deaths during a given time per 1,00,000 live births during the same time 4. The MMR of India has declined by 10 points 5. It has declined from 113 in 2016-18 to 103 in 2017-19 (8.8 % decline) 6. The country had been witnessing a progressive reduction in the MMR 7. India was on the verge of achieving the National Health Policy (NHP) target of 100/lakh live births by 2020 8. To achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals target of 70/ lakh live births by 2030 9. The number of States that have achieved the SDG target has now risen from five to seven -- Kerala (30), Maharashtra (38), Telangana (56), Tamil Nadu (58), Andhra Pradesh (58), Jharkhand (61), and Gujarat (70) 10. Kerala has recorded the lowest MMR which puts Kerala way ahead of the national MMR of 103


•    Periodic Labour Force Survey = 1. Released by the National Statistical Office (NSO) 2. The unemployment rate had shot up sharply during the nationwide lockdown in 2020 during the first wave of the pandemic 3. Unemployment Rate: percentage of unemployed persons in the labour force 4. Labour Force:  number of persons either employed or unemployed on an average in a week preceding the date of the survey 5. The NSO launched the Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) in April 2017  
•    World Air Quality Report = 1. 2021 2. An overview of the state of global air quality in 2021 3. IQAir, a Swiss group that measures air quality levels 4. Based on the concentration of Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5

•    Export Preparedness Index 2021 = 1. NITI Aayog 2. Gujarat has been named India’s top state in terms of export preparedness for the second year in row 3. Four Pillars: Policy, Business Ecosystem, Export Ecosystem, Export Performance 4. The index also took into consideration 11 sub-pillars

•    State of World Population 2022 Report = 1. The United Nations Population Fund’s (UNFPA) Flagship State of World Population Report 2022 was launched 2. Titled “Seeing the Unseen: The case for action in the neglected crisis of unintended pregnancy” 3. Between 2015 and 2019, there were roughly 121 million unintended pregnancies globally each year 4. Contraceptive use is 53% lower among women who have experienced intimate partner violence 5. United Nations Population Fund- subsidiary organ of the UN General Assembly and works as a sexual and reproductive health agency

 

Defence

 

•    Cluster munitions = 1. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch accused Russia of using cluster bombs and vacuum bombs in the war on Ukraine 2. A cluster munition means a conventional munition that is designed to disperse or release explosive submunitions 3. Cluster munitions are non-precision weapons that are designed to injure or kill human beings indiscriminately over a large area

4. The Convention on Cluster Munitions is a United Nations-adopted legal instrument that prohibits all use, production, transfer, and stockpiling of cluster munitions 5. It entered into force in 2010 after the requirement of 30 ratifications was complete 6. India has not signed the convention and is not a party to it 7. Other countries that are not parties are the US, Russia, China, Pakistan and Israel, among others 8. Vacuum bombs are not prohibited by any international law or agreement


•    Defence Acquisition Procedure = 1. The Ministry of Defence approved projects that will involve the design and development of military hardware 2. The defense ministry has cleared nine such projects: four under the ‘Make-I’ and five under the ‘Make-2’ categories of the DAP 2020 3. The ‘Make’ category of capital acquisition is the cornerstone of the Make in India initiative that seeks to build indigenous capabilities through the involvement of both the public and private sectors 4. ‘Make-I’ refers to government-funded projects while ‘Make-II’ covers industry-funded programmes


•    DefExpo-2022 = 1. Postponed, due to logistics problems being experienced by participants 2. It was to be the 12th edition of DefExpo held in Gandhinagar, Gujarat in March 2022 3. 11th edition was held at Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) in 2020 4. A flagship biennial event of the Ministry of Defence, showcasing the land, naval, air as well as homeland security systems


•    Exercise LAMITIYE 2022 = 1. Ninth edition of the Joint Military Exercise Lamitiye 2022 between the Indian Army and Seychelles Defence Forces (SDF) 2. a biennial training event being conducted in Seychelles since 2001


•    DUSTLIK Exercise = 1. 3rd edition of joint training exercise between Indian and Uzbekistan armies 2. Conducted at Yangiarik, Uzbekistan from 22nd to 31st March 2022 3. Focus on Counter-Terrorism operations in semi-urban terrain 4. Uzbekistan is important to India for security and connectivity to the Central Asian Region


•    IONS Maritime Exercise 2022 = 1. First edition of the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) Maritime Exercise 2022 (IMEX-22) was held in Goa and in the Arabian Sea 2. Objective- to enhance the interoperability of the navies of member nations in Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) operations 3. The Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) is a series of biennial meetings 4. The forum was established in 2007

 

 

Miscellaneous

 

•    Konark Sun Temple = 1. Konark is going to be the first model town in Odisha to shift from grid dependency to green energy 2. The Odisha government has issued a policy guideline in this regard 3. The state has targeted to generate 2,750 megawatts (MW) from renewable energy sources like the sun, wind, biomass, small hydro and waste-to-energy (WTE), etc. by 2022-end 4. Konark Sun Temple is located in East Odisha near the sacred city of Puri 5. Built in the 13th century by King Narasimhadeva I (AD 1238-1264) 6. The Eastern Ganga dynasty also known as Rudhi Gangas or Prachya Gangas 7. It was declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1984 8. Sailors once called this Sun Temple of Konark, the Black Pagoda


•    Kavach-Automatic Train Protection System = 1. The Indian Railways tested the 'Kavach'-Automatic Train Protection System by making two trains move towards each other at full speed 2. India’s own automatic protection system 3. Developed under the name Train Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) 4. A set of electronic devices and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) devices installed in locomotives  


•    Theyyam = 1. An annual temple festival called Theyyam performances 2. It is a popular ritual form of dance worship in Kerala and Karnataka 3. Consisted of thousand-year-old traditions, rituals and customs 4. There are about 456 types of Theyyam 5. Theyyam is performed by males, except the Devakoothu theyyam; the Devakoothu is the only Theyyam ritual performed by women 6. Major types of Theyyam- Vishnumoorthi, Gulikan, Kuttichathan, Puthiyaramban Daivam


•    Dol Utsav = 1. West Bengal celebrated the ‘Dol Utsav’ or ‘Dol Jatra’, the festival of colours, marking the onset of spring season 2. Dedicated to Lord Krishna and Radha and celebrated on full moon day 3. Last festival of the year as per the Bengali calendar 4. In the Eastern region of India, the festival of spring is celebrated as Dol Jatra, Dol Purnima, Dol Utsav, and Basanta Utsav


•    HANSA-NG = 1. India's first indigenously developed Flying Trainer 2. Successfully completed the sea-level trials at Puducherry 3. It is developed by the CSIR-National Aerospace Laboratories (CSIR-NAL) 4. Powered by a Rotax Digital Control Engine and is designed to meet the need for trainer aircraft by flying clubs in India


•    International Women's Day = 1. Celebrated annually on 8th March 2. First celebrated back in 1911 by Clara Zetkin, who was a German 3. Celebrated for the first time by the United Nations (UN) in 1975 4. 2022 Theme: 'Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow' 5. UN has organised 4 world conferences on women: Mexico City-1975, Copenhagen, 1980, Nairobi, 1985, Beijing, 1995 6. The 4th World Conference on Women (WCW), held in Beijing, was one of the largest ever gatherings of the UNs  


•    'She Auto' Stands = 1. Andhra Pradesh's First 'She Auto' Stands Set Up In Tirupati 2. To provide safe transport to women and girl students, the police in Andhra Pradesh's Chittoor have set up three 'She Auto' stands


•    Glycosmis Albicarpa = 1. Recently discovered species of gin berry 2. Discovered by scientists of the Botanical Survey of India (BSI) 3. Endemic to the southern Western Ghats 4. Belongs to the Orange family, Rutaceae
•    SLINEX-22 = 1. India - Sri Lanka Bilateral Maritime Exercise SLINEX 2. Sri Lanka–India Naval Exercise 3. Ninth Edition conducted at Visakhapatnam 3. Two phases- The Harbour Phase at Visakhapatnam followed by the Sea Phase in the Bay of Bengal 4. Sri Lanka Navy will be represented by SLNS Sayurala 5. The Indian Navy by INS Kirch, a guided missile corvette 6. Other Exercises between India and Sri Lanka- Exercise MITRA SHAKTI (Military Exercise), Dosti Trilateral Exercise (Coast guard India, Maldives and Sri Lanka)


•    Professor Deepak Dhar = 1. First Indian to get Boltzmann Medal 2. Shared the award with American scientist John Hopfield 3. The Boltzmann Medal, which has been instituted by C3 (Commission on Statistical Physics) of the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP), is given out once in three years to honour outstanding achievements in statistical physics


•    Pramod Sawant = 1. Takes oath as Chief Minister of Goa for 2nd term 2. Sawant represents the Sanquelim constituency in the Goa Legislative Assembly and is a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party 3. Mr Sawant was administered the oath by Governor PS Sreedharan Pillai.
•    N Biren Singh = 1. Takes oath as Chief Minister of Manipur for 2nd term 2. In the recently held Assembly polls, the BJP won an absolute majority by winning 32 seats in the 60-member House


•    Pal-Dadhvav massacre = 1. The Gujarat government marked 100 years of the Pal-Dadhvav killings, calling it a massacre “bigger than the Jallianwala Bagh” 2. Took place on March 7, 1922, in the Pal-Chitariya and Dadhvaav villages of Sabarkantha district, then part of Idar state 3. The day was Amalki Ekadashi, which falls just before Holi, a major festival for tribals, Villagers from Pal, Dadhvav, and Chitariya had gathered on the banks of river Heir as part of the ‘Eki movement’, led by one Motilal Tejawat 4. The movement was to protest against the land revenue tax (lagaan) imposed on the peasants by the British and feudal lords


•    Hague Convention,1954 = 1. The United Nations’ cultural agency (UNESCO) said it had bolstered protective measures to preserve Ukraine’s endangered cultural heritage in light of Russia’s invasion of its neighbour 2. The Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict was adopted in 1954 under the auspices of UNESCO 3. This convention is referred to as the 1954 Hague Convention 4. It is the first and the most comprehensive multilateral treaty dedicated exclusively to the protection of cultural heritage 5. India is party to Hague Convention 1954 6. Major Initiatives of UNESCO: Man and Biosphere Programme, World Heritage Programme, Global Geopark Network, Network of Creative Cities and Atlas of World Languages in Danger 7. Reports: UNESCO Science Report, Global Education Monitoring Report and State of the Education Report for India
•    Dandi March 1930 = 1. The march lasted from 12th March 1930 to 6th April 1930 2. Also known as the Salt March and the Dandi Satyagraha was an act of nonviolent civil disobedience led by Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi 3. On 12th March, Gandhiji set out from Sabarmati with 78 followers on a 241-mile march to the coastal town of Dandi on the Arabian Sea 4. On 21st May, the poet Sarojini Naidu led 2,500 marchers on the Dharasana Salt Works, some 150 miles north of Bombay 5. n Bengal, J.N. Sengupta defied Government laws by reading openly the books banned by the government


•    Kamikaze Drone = 1. The ‘lethal’ weapon being sent by US to Ukraine 2. Called the Kamikaze or suicide drones, these are unmanned aircraft that are part of the tranche of weapons that are being sent by the US to Ukraine to assist their fight against Russia 3. Russia, China, Israel, Iran and Turkey all have some version of it 4. Has a feature that allows the operator to adjust the blast radius
•    Mahatma Gandhi Green Triangle = 1. Unveiled in Madagascar to mark Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav 2. Word green in the plaque (a flat piece of stone or metal) signifies their commitment to sustainable development and saving the environment 3. Madagascar has a large diaspora from the Indian state of Gujarat and it is fitting that a green triangle named after Gandhi 4. Gandhi was a ‘Pravasi’ who returned to India from South Africa
•    World Tuberculosis Day 2022 = 1. Observed on 24th March 2. To spread awareness about the disastrous health, social, and economic consequences of TB and to take efforts to end the TB epidemic globally 3. The theme is Invest to End TB. Save Lives 4. TB is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis, belonging to the Mycobacteriaceae family consisting of about 200 members
•    Women Transforming India Awards = 1. Fifth edition 2. Organized by NITI Aayog’s Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) 3. Categories: Public and Community Service, Manufacturing Sector, Non-manufacturing sector, Financial Products enabling Economic Growth, Climate Action, Promote Art, Culture, and Handicrafts, Digital Innovation 4. WEP is an initiative by the NITI Aayog to promote and support aspiring as well as established women entrepreneurs in India
•    Assam Rifles = 1. 187th Raising Day of the Assam Rifles has been celebrated in Shillong 2. Watchdog of the North East and the oldest paramilitary force in the country 3. Central Paramilitary Force under the Central Armed Police Forces 4. It came into being in 1835, as a militia called the ‘Cachar Levy’, to primarily protect British Tea estates and their settlements against tribal raids 5. The Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) refers to seven security forces in India 6. Under the authority of the Ministry of Home Affairs
•    Kerala = 1. Kerala is set to become the first state in the country to introduce carbon-neutral farming methods in selected locations, for which the government has set aside ₹6 crore in the 2022-23 Budget 2. The Agriculture Department was involved in a process of adopting new farming methods in phases, which would reduce carbon emissions and help the carbon to be stored in the soil


•    AQVERIUM = 1. India’s 1st Digital Water Bank ‘AQVERIUM’ launched in Bengaluru 2. An innovative initiative aimed at better water management 3. It is formed by AquaKraft Group Ventures 4. It is a curated list of water data from all institutions and sources, that will help tackle some common development challenges
•    National Water Awards 2022 = 1. The President of India, Ram Nath Kovind has presented the 3rd National Water Awards in New Delhi 2. Best State category: Uttar Pradesh has been awarded first prize, followed by Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu 3. National Water Awards is given for exemplary work in the field of water resource management  
•    Abel prize for 2022 = 1. The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has awarded the Abel Prize for the year 2022 to American Mathematician Dennis Parnell Sullivan 2. The citation mentions that the award has been given, “For his groundbreaking contributions to topology in its broadest sense, and in particular it’s algebraic, geometric and dynamical aspects” 3. Topology is a field of mathematics which was born in the nineteenth century and has to do with properties of surfaces that do not change when they are deformed