Today’s Current Affairs: 25th Oct 2023 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc
Table of Contents
Small Savings Instruments:
The government of India has raised the rates offered for most small savings instruments (SSIs) in the range of 40 basis points (bps) to 150 bps over the last five quarters.
- Small Savings Instruments (SSIs) are a set of savings instruments managed by the central government with the aim of encouraging citizens to save regularly, irrespective of their age.
- They provide returns that are generally higher than bank fixed deposits.
- It also gives a sovereign guarantee and tax benefits.
- The interest rates on small savings schemes change on a quarterly basis.
- All deposits received under various small savings schemes are pooled in the National Small Savings Fund.
- These instruments can be classified under three headings:
- Postal deposits (comprising savings account, recurring deposits, time deposits of varying maturities, and monthly income scheme (MIS).
- Savings certificates (National Small Savings Certificate VIII (NSC) and Kisan Vikas Patra (KVP).
- Social security schemes (public provident fund (PPF) and Senior Citizens‘ Savings Scheme (SCSS).
The Union Minister for Tribal Affairs will inaugurate the Aadi Mahotsav – the National Tribal Festival – on 25th Octber, at Ahmedabad, Gujarat.
- Aadi Mahotsav mega event is being organised by the Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Limited (TRIFED).
- It serves as a unique, symbiotic bridge to embark on a journey through the tapestry of India’s indigenous heritage.
- In this event, a total of over 100 stalls would showcase the kaleidoscope of India’s tribal culture, craftsmanship, culinary artistry, and economic endeavours.
- This Aadi Mahotsav, besides other attractions of handicrafts, handloom, pottery, jewellery, will be showcasing ‘Millets grown by Tribals’.
- It is a national-level organisation under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs.
- It is primarily engaged in the development and marketing of tribal handicrafts and natural products.
Pradhan Mantri Anusuchit Jaati Abhuyday Yojana:
The Pradhan Mantri Anusuchit Jaati Abhuyday Yojana (PM- AJAY) has been implemented since 2021-22.
- Pradhan Mantri Anusuchit Jaati Abhuyday Yojana is a merged scheme of three Centrally Sponsored Schemes, namely Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojana (PMAGY), Special Central Assistance to Scheduled Castes Sub Plan (SCA to SCSP), and Babu Jagjivan Ram Chhatrawas Yojana (BJRCY).
- Aim is to reduce poverty of the SC communities by generation of additional employment opportunities through Skill development, income generating schemes and other initiatives and to improve socio-economic developmental indicators by ensuring adequate infrastructure and requisite services in the SC dominated villages.
Exercise Harimau Shakti 2023:
Exercise Harimau Shakti 2023 commenced in Umroi Cantonment, India
- Exercise Harimau Shakti 2023 is a joint bilateral training exercise between Indian & Malaysian Armed Forces.
- The Malaysian Army contingent comprises troops from the 5th Royal Battalion of the Malaysian Army. The Indian contingent is being represented by a battalion of the Rajput Regiment.
- Aim is to enhance military capability for conducting of Multi Domain Operations in a sub conventional scenario.
- During the exercise, both contingents will establish a Joint Command Post & establish an integrated surveillance grid along with a Joint Surveillance Centre.
- Both sides will rehearse employment of joint forces in jungle/ semi urban / urban environment. In addition, intelligence collection, collation and dissemination drills will also be rehearsed.
- The Exercise will also witness employment of Drones/UAVs & Helicopters. Two sides will also practice casualty management and evacuation drills.
- Both the contingents will discuss logistics management and practice survival training at the Battalion level.
- The training will focus primarily on high degree of physical fitness, conduct of drills at tactical level and sharing of best practices with each other.
- The Exercise will culminate with a 48-hour long validation exercise in a semi-urban area.
DANGER : Software Tool For Genome Editing
A team of researchers recently developed a software tool called DANGER (Deleterious and ANticipatable Guides Evaluated by RNA-sequencing) analysis that provides a way for the safer design of genome editing in all organisms.
- DANGER analysis is a new software tool that makes genome editing safer by overcoming limitations in current CRISPR technology.
- Unlike traditional methods that rely on a reference genome, DANGER works by conducting risk-averse on- and off-target assessments using RNA-sequencing data.
- It evaluates phenotypic effects based on gene expression changes caused by deleterious off-target sites.
- The software quantifies the phenotypic risk at the gene ontology level without the need for a reference genome.
- The tool successfully evaluated the phenotypic effects of gene editing in human cells and zebrafish brains.
- It can be performed on various organisms, personal human genomes, and atypical genomes created by diseases and viruses.
- The open-source nature of the software allows for its adaptation to different genome editing systems beyond CRISPR-Cas9.
- It is a method that lets scientists change the DNA of many organisms, including plants, bacteria, and animals.
Editing DNA can lead to changes in physical traits, like eye colour, and disease risk.
Patriot Air Defence Missile System:
The Pentagon recently said that it will send additional Patriot air defence missile system battalions to the Middle East in response to recent attacks on U.S. troops in the region.
- The Patriot (MIM-104), which stands for Phased Array Tracking Radar for Intercept on Target, is the S. Army’s most advanced air defense system.
- It is an all-weather surface-to-air missile defense system to counter tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and advanced aircraft.
- It was developed by Raytheon, an American multinational aerospace and defense conglomerate.
- The system was first used in combat during the 1991 Gulf War, with batteries protecting Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Israel, and was later used during the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.
- It is in service with the US and allied countries, including Germany, Greece, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Poland, Sweden, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Romania, Spain, and Taiwan.
- It is a mobile system that usually includes powerful radar, a control station, a power generator, launch stations, and other support vehicles.
- Depending on the version in use, the interceptor missiles can reach an altitude of more than 24 kilometres and hit targets up to 160 kilometres away.
- Its radar can track up to 50 targets and engage five of them at once.
- It is equipped with a track-via-missile (TVM) guidance system. Midcourse correction commands are transmitted to the guidance system from the mobile engagement control centre.
- A Patriot battery can need as many as 90 troops to operate and maintain it.
Exercise MILAN 2024:
The Mid Planning Conference (MPC) of MILAN 24 (Multilateral Naval Exercise – 2024), to be hosted by the Indian Navy at Visakhapatnam during Feb 2024, was conducted by the Eastern Naval Command (ENC).
- MILAN is a biennial multilateral naval exercise incepted by Indian Navy in 1995 at Andaman and Nicobar Command.
- Starting with the participation of only four countries, viz Indonesia, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Thailand, in the 1995 edition, the exercise has since transitioned leaps and bounds in terms of number of participants and complexity of exercises.
- Originally conceived in consonance with India’s ‘Look East Policy’, MILAN expanded in ensuing years with India’s ‘Act East policy’ and SAGAR Initiative, to include participation from island nations in the Western IOR (Indian Ocean Region) as also IOR littorals.
Abu Dhabi Masters 2023:
Unnati Hooda won the women’s singles title at Abu Dhabi Masters 2023.
- This is her second BWF Super 100 World Tour title.
- She became the youngest Indian to clinch a BWF title last year at 14 years of age.
Abu Dhabi Masters 2023:-
- Abu Dhabi Masters 2023 is the first-ever International badminton spectacle in the capital city.
- Venue: ADNEC Marina Hall, Abu Dhabi, UAE.
- It will take place under the esteemed patronage of Shaikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, the UAE Badminton Federation, in partnership with 316 Sports Services
Phase-Out Of Cheetah : Chetak Helicopters
Indian Army will begin phase-out of Cheetah, Chetak helicopters from 2027.
- The Army will start phasing out the first lot of the vintage Cheetah and Chetak helicopters from 2027 onwards on completion of their Total Technical Life (TTL) while it looks to induct the indigenous Light Utility Helicopters (LUH) in numbers to replace them.
- The Army is expected to receive six LUH between December 2024 and June 2025.
- Cheetah helicopter Operated by: both the Indian Air Force and the Army Aviation Corps.
- Hindustan Aeronautics Limited signed a licence agreement for the Lama with Aérospatiale in 1970 and christened the India-made aircraft “Cheetah”.
- The first Cheetah manufactured from raw materials was delivered in 1976-77.
- It is a licence-built version of the French Aérospatiale SA 315B Lama.
- It is known for its capability to operate in hot tropical weather as well as high altitude conditions. (MH-60R helicopters)
- The SA315B Lama was first flown in 1969, over 50 years ago.
- Over the years, it has developed a reputation for being unsafe, with the armed forces attempting to find upgrades for these rotorcraft.
- It has been used for transporting men and material, search and rescue, and reconnaissance.
- Cheetahs have especially been crucial for operations in Siachen, the world’s highest battleground at over 6,000 m.