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Daily Current Affairs for UPSC IAS: 15th May 2024

Today’s Current Affairs: 15th May 2024 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc

Doha Diamond League : Silver Medal To Neeraj Chopra

Neeraj Chopra, the reigning Olympic and world champion in javelin throw, started his 2024 season on a strong note, securing a second-place finish at the Doha Diamond League 2024.

  • Neeraj Chopra’s impressive throw of 88.36m on his final attempt fell just 2cm short of Czechia’s Jakub Vadlejch, the reigning Diamond League champion and Tokyo 2020 silver medalist.
  • After starting with a foul, Chopra, who holds the Indian national record, registered 84.93m with his second throw and 86.24m in his third attempt.
  • It was his final throw of the night that proved to be his best, securing him the silver medal position.

Sahitya Akademi Fellowship Award:

The prestigious Sahitya Akademi Fellowship has been given to Ruskin Bond, a renowned British-Indian author.

  • This honor was given to him on a Saturday at his home in Mussoorie. At first, Bond was named the winner of this prestigious award in September 2021.
  • The official presentation had to be pushed back because of health problems, but it was finally done recently.
  • The Sahitya Akademi Fellowship is the top award that India’s National Academy of Letters, the Sahitya Akademi, gives out.
  • The winner of this award has made “exceptional contributions towards enriching Indian literature.” Winners are chosen based on how much they have done in the writing world throughout their careers.
  • Ruskin Bond is a famous author who was born on May 19, 1934, in Kasauli, India. He is both British and Indian.
  • Bond is well-known for supporting children’s literature in India.

World Wildlife Crime Report 2024:

The 2024 World Wildlife Crime Report was released by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime on May 13, 2024. This report provides insights into the illegal wildlife trade that occurred between 2015 and 2021.

  • The rhino and pangolin were the animal species most affected:
    • Rhino Horn Market: Largest at 29%
    • Pangolin Scales Market: Second largest at 28%
    • Elephant Ivory Market: Third largest at 15%
    • Additional affected species include eels, crocodilians, parrots, cockatoos, carnivores, turtles, tortoises, snakes, seahorses, and other animals constituting various smaller percentages.
  • Plant Species
    • Cedars and other Sapindales were the most affected plant species:
    • Cedars and Sapindales Market: Largest at 47%
    • Rosewoods Market: Second largest at 35%
    • Agarwood and other Myrtales Market: Third largest at 13%
  • Other affected plant species include golden chicken fern, orchids, and several others.
    • Corals: 16% of seizures
    • Crocodilians: 9%
    • Elephants and Bivalve Molluscs: Each 6%

Prerna Programme : First Alumni Meeting

The Secretary, Department of School Education and Literacy virtually addressed the first alumni meeting of the Prerana Program.

  • Prerana is an ‘Experiential Learning program’ that aims to offer a meaningful, unique, and inspiring experience to all participants, thereby empowering them with leadership qualities.
  • It is driven by a strong commitment to integrate principles of the Indian education system and the philosophy of value-based education.
  • It was launched by the Department of School Education & Literacy, Ministry of Education, Government of India.
  • A batch of 20 selected students (10 boys and 10 girls) attend the program every week from various parts of the country.
  • The curriculum is built around nine core values like Dignity and Humility, Valor and Courage, Hard Work and Dedication, Compassion and Service, Diversity and Unity, Integrity and Purity, Innovation and Curiosity, Faith and Trust, and Freedom and Responsibility.


The first recipient of a modified pig kidney transplant passed away around two months after the surgery was carried out.

  • Xenotransplantation is any procedure that involves the transplantation, implantation or infusion into a human recipient of either live cells, tissues, or organs from a nonhuman animal source or human body fluids, cells, tissues or organs that have had ex vivo contact with live nonhuman animal cells, tissues or organs.
  • Xenotransplantation involving the heart was first tried in humans in the 1980s.
  • The animal organ selected has to undergo genetic modifications, so that the human body does not reject it.
  • Even after the operation, constant monitoring needs to be done to check the body’s response to the organ.

GPT-4o : ChatGPT

The ChatGPT, OpenAI has brought the capabilities of GPT-4 through its latest model named GPT-4o.

  • GPT-4o offers GPT-4 level intelligence and it is much faster and improves its capabilities across text, vision, and audio.
  • It makes human-to-machine interaction much more natural and far easier.
  • The voice mode on GPT-4o is efficient and intuitively recognises the voice of the speaker or multiple speakers.
  • Until now, the voice mode had three models that came together to deliver the feature.
  • These are – transcription, intelligence, and text-to-speech and they all came together and orchestrated to deliver the voice mode.
  • This led to latency, however, with GPT-4o all of this happens natively.
  • GPT-4o reasons across voice, text, and vision.
  • It also has a vision, allowing users to upload photos and documents, and can start conversations about the same.
  • One can also use the Memory feature, and browse to search real-time information during conversations.
  • Also, OpenAI has improved the quality and the speed in 50 different languages.
  • This model can pick up on a user’s emotions, and come up with different kinds of emotive styles of conversation.
  • It is also capable of telling about your feelings by looking at your face in real-time.

Exercise SHAKTI : 7th Edition

The 7th edition of India-France Joint Military Exercise SHAKTI commenced at the Joint Training Node in Umroi, Meghalaya recently.

  • Exercise Shakti  is a biennial training event conducted alternatively in India and France.
  • Aim is to enhance the joint military capability of both sides to undertake multi-domain operations in a Sub-Conventional scenario under Chapter VII of the United Nations Mandate.
  • The joint exercise will focus on operations in the semi-urban and mountainous terrain.
  • Objectives to be achieved from the joint training are a high degree of physical fitness, rehearsing and refining drills for operations at the tactical level, and sharing of best practices.
  • It will enable the two sides to share their best practices in Tactics, Techniques and Procedures for conducting joint operations.
  • The Indian contingent comprises 90 personnel, primarily from the Rajput Regiment, along with personnel from other arms and services, participating in the exercise.
  • Observers from the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force are also part of this 14-day exercise.

India International Bullion Exchange : SBI First Trading-Cum-Clearing Member

State Bank of India (SBI) recently announced it has become the first trading-cum-clearing member at the India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX)

  • India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX) is India’s first International Bullion Exchange.
  • It is based at GIFT City (Gujarat International Finance Tech City) IFSC (International Finance Services Center), Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
  • IIBX has been conceptualized to provide a gateway to import bullion into India and provide a world class bullion exchange ecosystem to promote bullion trading, investment in bullion financial products, and vaulting facilities in IFSCs.
  • It will facilitate Transparent Price Discovery, Responsible sourcing and supply chain integrity, Quality Assurance and Standardization.
  • The IIBX is regulated by the International Financial Services Centers Authority (IFSCA), a unified authority for the development and regulation of financial products, financial services, and financial institutions at IFSCs.
  • Products and technology offered at IIBX are diversified, and available at a cost that is far more competitive than those at Indian exchanges, as well as global exchanges in Hong Kong, Singapore, Dubai, London, and New York.
  • Bullion refers to physical gold and silver of high purity that is often kept in the form of bars, ingots, or coins.

General Provident Fund:

A single judge bench of the Madras High Court recently held that employees are not automatically entitled to pension benefits based on deductions made under the GPF scheme.

  • General Provident Fund (GPF) is a kind of Public Provident Fund (PPF) account that is available only for government employees in India.
  • It allows them to allocate a portion of their salaries to their GPF accounts.
  • Upon retirement, employees receive the accumulated corpus from their GPF accounts, reflecting their service tenure contributions.
  • As per the GPF rules, the following are eligible to subscribe to GPF account:
    • All temporary government servants who have given their service for continuously one year
    • All re-employed pensioners (except those eligible for admission to the contributory provident fund)
    • All permanent government servants
  • It is a mandatory scheme for government employees, requiring them to contribute a certain percentage of their salary towards the fund.
  • The contributions are deducted from the employee’s monthly salary, and the amount earns interest at a predetermined rate.
  • Employees can also increase their GPF deductions as per their choice.
  • Employees can withdraw their savings from the fund upon retirement or resignation from service.
  • A GPF is flexible, allowing employees to withdraw money from the fund for various reasons, such as marriage, education, and medical emergencies.
  • Employees can also take out loans against their GPF account, subject to certain conditions.
  • Employees who transfer to another government department or leave their job can withdraw their GPF balance or transfer it to their new employer.
  • The GPF sum will be paid to their nominee if the employee passes away.

Mahi River : Two youngsters Died


Two youngsters died by drowning in Mahi River near Kotna village on the outskirts of the Vadodara city recently.

  • Mahi River is one of the major west-flowing interstate rivers of India. It extends over the states of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Gujarat, having a total drainage area of 34,842
  • It originates from the northern slopes of Vindhyas at an altitude of 500 m near village Bhopawar, in the Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh, and flows through Madhya Pradesh for about 120 km in a southerly direction.
  • It then enters the south eastern portion of Rajasthan, which is the Vagad region.
  • The river flows through the Banswara district, which comes under the Vagad region.
  • Before entering Gujarat, the river makes a ‘U’-shaped loop in Rajasthan.
  • It drains into the Arabian Sea through the Gulf of Khambhat.
  • It is bounded by the Aravalli Hills on the north and the north-west, by the Malwa Plateau on the east, by the Vindhyas on the south, and by the Gulf of Khambhat on the west.
  • The main tributaries of the river are Eru, Nori, Chap, Som, Jakham, Moran, Anas, Panam, and Bhadar.
  • The Mahi River has a dam on it, namely, the Mahi Bajaj Sagar Dam. The whole of Gujarat gets water to drink and electricity from the dam.