Today Current Affairs: 18th August 2022 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc
Table of Contents
A contingent of the Indian Air Force left for Malaysia to participate in a bilateral exercise named ‘Udarashakti’.
- While Harimau Shakti is Joint military exercises which are held annually between the two countries.
- The Indian Air Force is participating in the air exercise with Su-30 MKI and C-17 aircraft while Malaysian Air Force will be flying Su 30 MKM aircraft.
- The four days of exercise will witness the conduct of various aerial combat drills between the two Air Forces
- The first bilateral Air Force exercise that staged frontline Sukhoi-30 combat aircraft was conducted in 2018.
- From 2008 to 2010, the Indian Air Force Training Team was deployed in Malaysia to give training to Malaysian pilots on the SU-30SKM aircraft.
A delegation from Gabon visited India and interacted with the Indian business community, also India congratulated Gabon on its Independence Day (17th August).
- Earlier, the Vice President of India visited Gabon, where he signed two MoUs (Memorandum of Understanding).
- Establishment of a Joint Commission between the Governments of India and Gabon.
- Diplomats’ training institutes, Sushma Swaraj Institute of Foreign Services and Gabonese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
- India signed to work with Gabon to strengthen cooperation in various spheres at bilateral, regional, and multilateral levels.
National Mission On Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems:
The Ministry of Science and Technology has organised a workshop to discuss joint research projects under NM-ICPS (National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems).
- A total of 35 joint projects have been identified which will be implemented by TIHs (Technology Innovation Hubs) and research institutions from the USA.
- This endeavour will help achieve collaborative research and development between the two countries in the area of CPS (Cyber-Physical Systems).
- It was launched in 2018 by the Ministry of Science and Technology with an outlay of Rs. 3,660.00 crore for a period of five years to encourage innovation in new age technologies.
- It covers the entire India which includes Central Ministries, State Governments, Industry and Academia.
- The NM-ICPS is a comprehensive Mission which would address technology development, application development, human resource development & skill enhancement, entrepreneurship and start-up development in Cyber Physical System (CPS) and associated technologies.
- The Mission aims at the establishment of 15 Technology Innovation Hubs (TIH), six Application Innovation Hubs (AIH) and four Technology Translation Research Parks (TTRP).
- These Hubs & TTRPs will connect to Academics, Industry, Central Ministries and State Government in developing solutions at reputed academic, R&D and other organizations across the country in a hub and spoke model.
- The Hubs & TTRPs have four focused areas along which the Mission implementation would proceed, namely:
- Technology Development,
- HRD & Skill Development,
- Innovation, Entrepreneurship & Start-ups Ecosystem Development, and
- International Collaborations.
All India Football Federation (AIFF):
FIFA has suspended AIFF due to undue legal and political interference in the federation.
- In May this year, India’s Supreme Court disbanded the AIFF (due to issues of mismanagement) and appointed a three-member committee to govern the sport.
- However, Fifa’s rules say its member federations must be free from legal and political interference.
- U-17 women’s world cup (scheduled to be played in October in India) may not be held.
- Also, Indian national team will not be allowed to play other national football teams.
- Success in women’s football: Gokulam Kerala FC – a professional football team based in Kerala state – became the first Indian club to play in the prestigious Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Women’s Club Championship.
Yuan Wang 5:
China’s satellite tracking vessel Yuan Wang 5 has arrived at Sri Lanka’s southern Hambantota Port, despite India and the U.S. voicing concern with Colombo over the military ship’s visit.
- Yuan Wang 5 is a third-generation vessel of the Yuan Wang series that entered service in 2007.
- This series of ships include “space tracking ships involved in supporting the manned space programme”.
- It has the ability to track satellites and intercontinental missiles.
- Hambantota International Port Group is a Public Private Partnership and a Strategic Development Project between the Government of Sri Lanka and China Merchants Port Holdings (CMPort).
- This port was given to China by Sri Lanka on a 99-year lease after Sri Lanka failed to repay Chinese loans.
- It is seen as a case of Chinese “debt trap” Diplomacy.
One Nation-One Application’ is being implemented using the National eVidhan Application (NeVA)
- NeVA is a portal to bring all the legislatures of the country together, on one platform.
- NeVA (previously known as e-Vidhan) is a Mission Mode Project (MMP) under the Digital India Programme, under the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs (MoPA).
- Paperless Assembly
- Automation of the entire law-making process
- Cloud technology (Meghraj) allows data to be accessed anywhere at any time.
- Himachal Pradesh is the first Digital Legislature in the country.
CAG Report On Conservation Of Coastal Ecosystem:
Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India tabled a report in Parliament on whether steps taken by the Union Environment Ministry to conserve India’s coastal ecosystems have been successful.
Findings of ‘performance audits’ of Conservation of Coastal Ecosystems from 2015-20:
- National Coastal Zone Management Authorities (NCZMA) is still functioning as an ad-hoc body: Thus, impacting consistency in coastal conservation
- Delay or non-existent State/UT Coastal Zone Management Authorities (SCZMA): Karnataka has still not constituted it while Goa, West Bengal and Odisha have delayed its reconstitution. In Andhra Pradesh, District Level Committees were not even established
- Several projects approved despite the EIA report highlighted inconsistency: Incidences of illegal construction activities and effluent discharges from local bodies, industries and aquaculture farms
- Other issues in EIA: non-accredited consultants preparing the EIA, using outdated data, and not evaluating the environmental impacts of the project
- Expert Appraisal Committees not being present during project deliberations.
- Members of the EAC were fewer than half of the total strength during the deliberations.
- States haven’t yet prepared Integrated Management Plan for Critically Vulnerable Coastal Areas.
- Tamil Nadu didn’t have a strategy in place to conserve the Gulf of Mannar Islands.
- Goa: there was no system for monitoring coral reefs and no management plans to conserve turtle nesting sites.
Selection Of Vice Chancellors To State Universities:
The Kerala State Cabinet has approved a Bill that could effectively curtail the Governor’s influence in the selection of Vice Chancellors to State universities.
- The issue highlights the conflict between democratically elected CM and centre-appointed Governor.
- Powers of Governor for state Universities: ex-officio chancellor of the universities in that state.
- In Kerala’s case, the Governor’s official portal asserts that “as Chancellor governor acts independently of the Council of Ministers and takes his own decisions on all University matters”.
- Rajasthan’s Raj Bhawan states that the “Governor appoints the Vice-Chancellor on the advice/ in consultation with the State Government”
- For Central Universities: President appoints chancellors.
National Curriculum Framework:
Union Minister for Education Dharmendra Pradhan has urged the citizens to participate in the Citizen Survey for National Curriculum Framework for developing a new curriculum.
- He said, a dynamic National Curriculum Framework in line with the National Education Policy- 2020 will play a major role in achieving the goal of Viksit Bharat.
- Ministry of Education has invited suggestions of the public through an online public consultation survey for the formulation of National Curriculum Framework and subsequently design of syllabus, textbooks and other instructional materials.
- The Government has announced the National Education Policy in July 2020, which recommends quality improvement of the system of education through the development of a National Curriculum Framework.
- The process of the Framework has been started through the constitution of the District Consultation Committees, State Focus Groups, and State Steering Committee, National Focus Groups and National Steering Committee.