Daily Current Affairs- September 18, 2023
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Staying informed about the world’s latest events is crucial, and Daily Current Affairs serve as a valuable resource for this purpose. We provide updates on a wide range of subjects, including politics, economics, sports, science, and culture. Regularly engaging with Daily Current Affairs not only enhances your general knowledge and awareness but also sharpens your analytical abilities. It’s an excellent tool for those preparing for competitive exams, interviews, or discussions. You can visit this space daily for your daily dose of current affairs. Consistent reading of Daily Current Affairs can contribute to your growth as an informed and self-assured individual and will also help you to increase your marks in the general awareness section.

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Govt launches Vishwakarma Yojana for artisans

  • The scheme aims to provide collateral-free loans to artisans at 5% interest rate and up to 8% subsidy.
  • The loan amount ranges from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 3 lakh and covers 18 activities such as carpentry, goldsmithing, and barbering.
  • The government has allocated Rs 13,000 crore for the scheme in the Budget 2023-242.
  • The scheme was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday.

New Parliament building has six gates named after creatures1

  • The new Parliament building, where proceedings will begin tomorrow, has six gates named after creatures – some real, others mythological.
  • Each of these creatures signifies different aspects of the Parliament that represents 140 crore Indians.
  • The six gates are Gaja Dwar, Ashwa Dwar, Garuda Dwar, Makar Dwar, Shardula Dwar and Hams Dwar. Each door boasts a sculpture of the creature it is named after.
  • The Gaja Dwar is named after the elephant, which represents intellect, memory, wealth and wisdom. The Ashwa Dwar is named after the horse, which symbolises power, strength and courage.
  • The Garuda Dwar is named after Garuda – the king of birds and the mount of Lord Vishnu. It symbolises power and dharma (duty). The Makara Dwar is named after the legendary sea creature that represents India’s unity in diversity and protection.
  • The Shardula Dwar is named after Shardula, which has the body of a lion and the head of a horse, elephant or parrot. It symbolises the power of the people of the country. The Hamsa Dwar is named after the swan, which is the mount of Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge. It symbolises self-realisation and wisdom.

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Shantiniketan: A UNESCO World Heritage Site

  • Shantiniketan, located in the Indian state of West Bengal, is not just an educational institution but a symbol of India’s rich cultural and literary heritage. It was founded by Rabindranath Tagore, a Nobel laureate and one of India’s most revered literary figures. Tagore envisioned Shantiniketan as a place where students could learn in harmony with nature, away from the confines of traditional classroom education.
  • The inclusion of Shantiniketan in the UNESCO World Heritage list is a recognition of its unique contribution to the world in terms of education, culture, and history. This prestigious listing will help preserve Shantiniketan for future generations and also increase its visibility on the global stage.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s congratulatory message reflects the pride and joy of the entire nation on this achievement. This recognition by UNESCO is indeed a proud moment for all Indians as it underscores the country’s rich cultural heritage and its commitment to preserving it.

Gita Mehta: A Life of Literature and Legacy

  • Gita Mehta, a renowned writer-filmmaker and the sister of Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik, passed away on Saturday in New Delhi at the age of 80.
  • Mehta had written several books, such as Karma Cola, Snakes and Ladders, A River Sutra, Raj and Eternal Ganesha, and produced and directed many documentaries for international networks.
  • Mehta had declined the Padma Shri award in 2019, citing the upcoming general election and the possibility of being accused of nepotism.
  • Mehta was married to American publisher Sonny Mehta, who died in 20194. She was also the daughter of former Odisha chief minister Biju Patnaik.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other senior politicians expressed their condolences on social media and praised Mehta’s contribution to literature and culture

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Libya’s Derna Flooding: A Humanitarian Crisis

  • Libya’s Derna flooding is a humanitarian disaster caused by heavy rainfall and flash floods that hit the eastern city of Derna on September 15, 2023.
  • The death toll has risen to 11,300, with 10,100 people still missing and thousands more displaced or injured.
  • The flooding has also damaged infrastructure, disrupted services, and contaminated drinking water sources, posing health and environmental risks.
  • The situation is worsened by the presence of landmines and unexploded ordnance in the area, which pose a threat to rescue workers and civilians.
  • The Libyan government and the UN have appealed for international assistance and support to cope with the crisis.

India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor: A New Era of Connectivity

  • India, Saudi Arabia, EU and US launch India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor, a multimodal infrastructure project to boost connectivity between the three regions.
  • The corridor is seen as a counter to China’s Belt and Road Initiative and a reflection of India’s deepening strategic ties with West Asia and Europe.
  • The corridor comprises rail and shipping routes, undersea cables for electricity and telecommunications, and pipes for clean hydrogen exports. It is expected to link India, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Israel and some EU states.
  • The corridor will reduce dependence on the Suez Canal, cut down transport time and costs, and create green alternatives for trade. It will also enhance economic integration and cooperation among the participants.
  • The project faces some challenges such as economic viability, geopolitical rivalry and regional instability. Turkey has opposed the corridor for bypassing its territory4. China has welcomed the project but cautioned against using it as a geopolitical tool.

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World Bamboo Day: Celebrating the Versatility of Bamboo

  • World Bamboo Day is celebrated on September 18 every year to raise awareness and appreciation of bamboo as a versatile and sustainable resource.
  • The day was initiated by the World Bamboo Organization in 2009 during the World Bamboo Congress in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • The date coincides with the birthday of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, India’s former president and a Nobel laureate, who was a strong supporter of bamboo’s potential for poverty alleviation and environmental conservation.
  • World Bamboo Day aims to promote the environmental, economic, cultural and social benefits of bamboo, such as its rapid growth, minimal water and pesticide requirements, diverse uses, job creation and habitat preservation.
  • World Bamboo Day is marked by various activities and events, such as workshops, exhibitions, art displays and educational programs, involving bamboo enthusiasts, experts, policymakers and businesses from around the world.

UN General Assembly session: What to expect?

  • The 78th UN General Assembly session will begin on September 19 with a general debate on the theme of rebuilding trust and solidarity for sustainable development.
  • The session will also address various global issues such as the situation in Afghanistan, disarmament, climate change, and humanitarian assistance.
  • India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will represent the country and raise its demands for reforming the UN Security Council and promoting its digital platforms.
  • The UN General Assembly is the main policy-making organ of the UN, comprising all member states, and has the power to appoint the secretary-general, elect non-permanent members of the UNSC, and approve the UN’s budget.

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India’s Role in G77 Plus China Summit: A Call for Unity and Solidarity

  • India attends the summit of G77 Plus China, a group of 134 developing nations, in Cuba and highlights its G20 initiative to mainstream Global South issues
  • India’s MEA Secretary (West) Sanjay Verma represents the country and urges the group to focus on its core mandate of addressing inequality, sustainable development and poverty eradication
  • Verma also suggests that the group change its name to reflect its numerical strength and empirical weight at the UN and speak in one voice on economic and developmental challenges
  • Verma cites India’s successful hosting of the G20 summit as an example of reforming multilateralism and bringing Africa to the high table of a global body
  • Verma proposes that the G77 should not get distracted by bilateral political conflicts and adhere to consensus, credibility, transparency and consultation as its working principles

Sidbi plans to raise ₹10,000 crore from rights issue to support SME lending

  • Sidbi is a state-owned lender that provides refinancing and direct financing to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in India
  • Sidbi seeks to expand its equity capital by ₹10,000 crore through a rights issue in two tranches of ₹5,000 crore each in the next fiscal year
  • Sidbi expects its asset base to grow to ₹5 lakh crore by March 2024 from about ₹4 lakh crore in March 2023, driven by higher demand for direct lending
  • Sidbi’s capital adequacy ratio (CAR) fell to 15.63% as of June 2023 from 24.28% in FY22 due to effective capital utilisation
  • Sidbi’s leverage rose to 14.36 times as of March 2023 from 9.22 times as of March 2022, but remained within the regulatory limit of 18 times

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Indian Oil becomes title sponsor of MotoGP Bharat

  • MotoGP Bharat is the first-ever grand prix in India, to be held at the Buddh International Circuit from September 22 to 24
  • Indian Oil, a state-owned energy giant, has taken on the title sponsorship of the event, which will feature 42 teams and 84 riders in three categories
  • The sponsorship deal will help promote the race and attract more fans, as well as showcase Indian Oil’s network and brand value
  • The sponsorship deal is also a sign of the growing interest and opportunity in MotoGP partnerships, which grew by 32% in 2022

Hyderabad Liberation Day: A Day of Regional and National Significance

  • Hyderabad Liberation Day is celebrated on September 17 every year to mark the integration of Hyderabad state into India in 1948
  • Hyderabad state was ruled by the Nizam, who wanted to remain independent after India’s partition in 1947, but was opposed by the people and the Indian government
  • The Indian government launched a military operation called Operation Polo to annex Hyderabad, which lasted for five days and ended with the surrender of the Nizam
  • Hyderabad Liberation Day is observed as a day of freedom and unity by the people of the Hyderabad-Karnataka region in Karnataka and Telangana state
  • The day is also designated as Telangana National Integration Day to promote harmony and diversity among the various communities in the state

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Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Wins Singapore Grand Prix 2023

  • Sainz ends Verstappen’s record run of 10 consecutive wins and Red Bull’s unbeaten streak in 2023 season
  • Sainz beats Norris by 0.4 seconds and Hamilton by 1.2 seconds in a thrilling race at the Marina Bay Street Circuit
  • Singapore Grand Prix attracts over 264,000 spectators, recovering from the cancellation in 2020 and 2021 due to COVID-19
  • Sainz’s victory is Ferrari’s first since 2019 and boosts his third place in the drivers’ championship

Assam Governor launches ‘Sarpanch Samvad’ app for village leaders

  • The app is developed by the Quality Council of India (QCI) to support and empower Sarpanchs, who are village headmen, in India1
  • The app provides a platform for networking, knowledge sharing, and collaboration among 2.5 lakh Sarpanchs across the country2
  • The app also offers multilingual support, access to vital resources, and an advisory role for former Sarpanchs
  • The app aims to promote community development, grassroots leadership, and rural empowerment

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Fashion Designer Rahul Mishra Honored With France’s “Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres” award

  • Rahul Mishra is an Indian designer who creates ethical and sustainable fashion using traditional Indian textiles and embroidery
  • He received the prestigious French award for his contribution to arts and culture, joining other Indian designers who have received it before
  • He has showcased his designs at various international fashion weeks and has been worn by celebrities such as Priyanka Chopra Jonas and Zendaya
  • He has also won several other awards, such as the Rarete Award, the International Fashion Award for Sustainable and Ethical Brand, and the International Woolmark Prize

Indian Bank Launches ‘IB SAATHI’ to Enhance Financial Inclusion Services

  • IB SAATHI is a new initiative by Indian Bank to provide basic banking services through business correspondent (BC) channel
  • IB SAATHI offers fixed outlets for minimum four hours daily and doorstep banking for customers in remote or underserved areas
  • IB SAATHI aims to expand its BC network to 15,000 and its service portfolio to 96 by FY25
  • IB SAATHI is a part of Indian Bank’s financial inclusion efforts and commitment to empower customers

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India Hosts Inaugural UNCITRAL South Asia Conference

  • India hosts the first-ever conference of the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) for South Asia from September 14 to 16
  • The conference aims to foster closer ties between India and UNCITRAL and promote dialogue and cooperation among the participants on trade law issues
  • The conference is attended by eminent dignitaries, including Minister of State for External Affairs, Chief Justice of India, and Attorney General
  • The conference covers various topics, such as digital economy, MSMEs, insolvency, investor-state dispute settlement, arbitration, and mediation
  • The conference also features a high-level roundtable on regional perspectives on UNCITRAL and its work in South Asia
  • The conference highlights India’s role and potential as a hub for international arbitration and trade law reform

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