CrackitToday App

Daily Current Affairs for UPSC IAS: 26th June 2023

Today’s Current Affairs: 26th Jun 2023 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc

Nehru-Liaquat Pact:

Death anniversary of Syama Prasad Mookerjee was marked recently. He resigned from the cabinet of JL Nehru in April 1950 over the controversial Nehru-Liaquat Pact.

  • The Liaquat-Nehru Pact was a post-Partition agreement between India and Pakistan in 1950.
  • The pact aimed to address the treatment of minorities in both countries and provide them with equal rights and security.
  • However, the pact became a point of contention for Syama Prasad Mookerjee, a member of the Hindu Mahasabha and a part of Nehru’s first Union Cabinet.
  • June 23rd is the 70th death anniversary of Syama Prasad Mookerjee
  • Nehru-Liaquat Pact (also called Delhi Pact) was signed on April 8, 1950, between Jawaharlal Nehru (Prime Minister of India) and Liaquat Ali Khan (Prime Minister of Pakistan)
  • Purpose was to establish a framework for the treatment of minorities in India and Pakistan due to Communal tensions and violence during the Partition of India in 1947
  • Provisions of the Pact:
    • Refugees were allowed to return safe and unmolested to dispose of their property.
    • Abducted women and looted property were to be returned.
    • Forced conversions were derecognized.
    • Minority rights were confirmed.
    • Setting up minority commissions in both India and Pakistan
    • Countries to ensure complete equality of citizenship for minorities in both countries
    • Countries will guarantee freedom of movement within each country, freedom of occupation, speech, and worship for minorities

Cell-Cultivated Chicken : Approval From The U.S. Government

Cell-cultivated chicken, also known as lab-grown meat, has received approval from the U.S. government for production and sale by two California-based companies.

  • This development is seen as a significant step in reducing carbon emissions associated with the global food industry.
    About Cell cultivated meat:
  • Cell-cultivated meat involves isolating cells that makeup chicken meat and providing them with the necessary resources to grow and multiply in a controlled environment.
  • The process takes place in a bioreactor or cultivator.
  • The cells are then processed with additives to enhance texture and appearance before being used in various recipes.
  • Lab-grown meat is being developed to address concerns related to emissions, land use, animal welfare, food security, and customization.
  • It has the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and land use associated with traditional livestock farming.
  • It offers customization options for healthier and more sustainable alternatives.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Visit To The United States:

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the United States marked a major step forward in India-US ties, with several significant agreements and partnerships being established.

Key highlights of the visit:

  • High-Tech Partnership:
    • Semiconductor supply chain agreements; Introduced Indo-U.S. Quantum Coordination Mechanism to facilitate better collaboration among academia and industries;
  • Defence Cooperation ·:
    • Strategic Defence partnership;
    • India – US Defence Acceleration Ecosystem (INDUS-X);
    • MoU between GE and HAL for manufacturing GE-F414 jet engines in India (with 80% technology transfer) to be used in Tejas Mk2
    • Purchase of 16 armed MQ-9B SeaGuardian UAVs;
    • Defence acceleration ecosystems;
    • Ship repair agreements;
    • Placement of Indian liaison officers at US commands
  • Space Cooperation:
    • India signing the Artemis Accords for lunar and space exploration;
    • NASA provides advanced training to Indian astronauts;
    • Strategic Framework for human spaceflight cooperation by 2023 end
    • NASA and ISRO have agreed to launch a joint mission to International Space Station in 2024
  • Trade and Consular Issues :
    • Resolution of WTO disputes and market access;
    • Establishment of new consulates in India (Bengaluru and Ahmedabad) and the US (India’s consulate in Seattle);
    • Relaxation in H1B visa norms
  • Clean Energy :
    • US-India New and Emerging Renewable Energy Technologies Action Platform to accelerate cooperation in green hydrogen and other emerging technologies.
    • U.S. Agency for International Development is to support Indian Railways’ to become a “net-zero” carbon emitter by 2030.

Heliopolis Memorial: PM Of India Visit

Prime Minister of India will pay his respects at the Heliopolis (Port Tewfik) Memorial in the Heliopolis War Cemetery in Cairo, Egypt.

  • Heliopolis Memorial is part of the larger Heliopolis Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery.
  • This memorial commemorates the memory of 3,727 Indian soldiers who died fighting in various campaigns in Egypt and Palestine in the First World War.
  • The original Port Tewfik memorial was unveiled in 1926 and was situated at the entrance to the Suez Canal.
  • The memorial was destroyed in the Israeli-Egyptian War of 1967 by retreating Egyptian soldiers, and a new memorial was erected in Heliopolis Commonwealth War Grave Cemetery in 1980.
  • The Indian troops played a key role in securing the Suez Canal in Egypt and in Palestine, where Indian cavalry participated in the Battle of Haifa and also played a key role in Mesopotamia in the First World War.
  • Port Tewfik is now known as Port Suez
  • Port Suez is located in Egypt along the northern coastline of the Gulf of Suez.
  • The port and city mark the southern terminus of the Suez Canal, which runs north-south through Egypt from the Mediterranean Sea to the Gulf of Suez.
  • The port serves vessels transporting general cargo, oil tankers, and both commercial and private passenger vessels.

Riot Provision Of The Reserve Bank Of India : Manipur

The Manipur government has invoked the Riot Provision of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in response to a Grave Situation in the State marked by riots and violence.

  • The order acknowledged the borrowers’ inability to repay loans due to the crisis and sought relief measures for the affected individuals.
  • While typically applied in areas affected by natural calamities, this move marks the first instance of its utilization in response to a law-and-order situation.

RBI Directions 2018:

  • The Provisions are as per Chapter No. 7 of the “Reserve Bank of India (Relief Measures by Banks in Areas Affected by Natural Calamities) Directions, 2018.”
  • Whenever RBI advises the banks to extend rehabilitation assistance to the riot/disturbance affected persons, the aforesaid guidelines may broadly be followed by banks for the purpose.
  • The Provisions specifically addresses “Riots and Disturbances”.
  • The rules specify several norms that must be followed for Restructuring the Loans, providing fresh loans and other measures, including KYC norms.
  • According to the directions, all the short-term loans, except those overdue at the time of the occurrence of riots, will be eligible for restructuring.
  • The provisions of these Directions shall apply to every Scheduled Commercial Bank (including Small Finance Banks (SFBs) and excluding Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) licensed to operate in India by RBI.
  • In the case of crop loans, if the loss ranges between 33% and 50%, borrowers are eligible for a maximum repayment period of two years. If the crop loss exceeds 50%, the repayment period can be extended up to a maximum of five years.
  • Additionally, all restructured loan accounts will have a moratorium period of at least one year.
  • If the crop is damaged without harm to productive assets, banks can reschedule installment payments for the affected year and extend the loan period by one year.
  • Additionally, banks have the option to postpone interest payments by borrowers. However, if productive assets are also damaged, a new loan may be required.
  • Banks will evaluate borrowers’ credit needs, follow loan approval procedures, and may offer collateral-free consumption loans up to Rs 10,000 to existing borrowers without personal guarantees, even if the value of assets is lower than the loan amount.
  • For the people who have lost their documents due to the calamity of riots, the banks need to open new accounts for such people.
  • This will be applicable where the balance in the account does not exceed Rs 50,000. The total credit in the account should not exceed Rs 1,00,000.

Paper Based Supercapacitor : Rapid Device Charging

Scientists at the Gujarat Energy Research and Management Institute (GERMI) have achieved a breakthrough in energy storage technology with the development of a paper-based supercapacitor.

  • This cutting-edge supercapacitor, derived from seaweed, boasts remarkable attributes such as being lightweight, biodegradable, and capable of fully charging a device within a mere 10 seconds.
  • The paper-based supercapacitor developed by GERMI researchers is the thinnest and most lightweight of its kind.
  • By leveraging cellulose nanofibers derived from seaweed, the team successfully created an anodic paper supercapacitor that exhibits exceptional tensile strength, performance, and cost-effectiveness.
  • The applications of this innovative supercapacitor are vast, spanning electronics, memory backup systems, airbags, heavy machinery, and electric vehicles.
  • Consequently, it presents a lucrative business prospect for industries seeking high-performance energy storage solutions.
  • The technology’s versatility and eco-friendly nature make it an attractive option for both manufacturers and consumers.
  • The paper supercapacitor owes its remarkable properties to the marine cellulose-based material derived from seaweed.
  • This material holds immense potential for integration into various smart electronic devices.
  • The cultivation of seaweed can serve as a source of revenue for coastal communities, creating economic opportunities and sustainable development.

Belize As a Malaria Free Country:

The World Health Organization (WHO) has certified Belize as a malaria-free country.

  • Belize is located on the northeast coast of Central America and south of the Yucatán Peninsula.
  • It has a land of mountains, swamps, and tropical jungle.
  • It is bounded by Mexico to the north, Guatemala to the west and south, and the Caribbean Sea to the east.
  • The southern half of the country is dominated by the rugged Maya Mountains, a plateau of igneous rock cut by erosion into hills and valleys that stretch in a southwesterly to northeasterly direction.
  • The northern half of the country consists of limestone lowlands and swamps less than 200 feet (60 metres) above sea level.
  • Along the coast of this country, there is Belize Barrier Reef which is the second-largestbarrier reef in the world.
  • The reef reserve system was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996.

Mineral Security Partnership(MSP) And India:

India was recently inducted into the Mineral Security Partnership (MSP).

  • Mineral Security Partnership is an ambitious new initiative to bolster critical mineral supply chains, announced by the United States (US) and key partner countries in June 2022.
  • The goal of the alliance is to ensure that critical minerals are produced, processed, and recycled in a manner that supports the ability of countries to realise the full economic development benefit of their geological endowments.
  • The focus of the grouping would be on the supply chains of minerals such as Cobalt, Nickel, Lithium and also the 17 “rare earth” minerals.
  • Critical mineral are mineral deposits with high economic vulnerability and high global supply chain risk.
  • The major critical minerals are Graphite, Lithium and Cobalt.
  • They are used for making EV batteries and are also critical for making semiconductors and high-end electronics manufacturing.
  • These minerals are also used in manufacturing fighter jets, drones, radio sets and other critical equipment.
  • The major producers of critical minerals globally are Chile, Indonesia, Congo, China, Australia and South Africa.
  • The 17 rare earth elements (REE) include the 15 Lanthanides (atomic numbers 57 — which is Lanthanum — to 71 in the periodic table) plus Scandium (atomic number 21) and Yttrium (39).

NASA’s X-57 Maxwell : Electric Aircraft Project

NASA’s X-57 Maxwell all-electric aircraft project will soon conclude aircraft operational activities, with documentation and close-out activities continuing for several months afterwards.

  • X-57 Maxwell is an all-electric experimental aircraft designed to demonstrate multiple leading-edge technologies.
  • It is being designed and developed by NASA.
  • Goal is to demonstrate that an all-electric airplane can be more efficient, quieter and more environmentally friendly than airplanes powered by traditional gas piston engines.
  • It was made by modifying an Italian Texnam P2006T light aircraft to be powered by an electric propulsion system.
  • It will demonstrate the use of a high-power distributed electric propulsion system for use on an aircraft, including a 460-volt battery to power 14 motors and propellers.
  • The cruise motor controllers are critical components of the X-57’s powertrain, as they convert the energy stored in the aircraft’s lithium-ion batteries to power the motors that spin the electric propellers.
  • The wing, which is being reduced to 42% of the original size to significantly reduce drag, will feature wing-tip propellers to reduce the wing-tip vortex at cruise.

INS Sunayna : Visit To Kenya

INS Sunayna visited Mombasa, Kenya from 20-23 Jun 23 towards strengthening bilateral ties with maritime neighbours on the theme of the Ocean Ring of Yoga.

  • INS SUNAYNA is a Sarayu class Offshore Patrol Vessel which was commissioned at Kochi.
  • It is based under Southern Naval Command and is built at Goa Shipyard Limited.
  • The warship is designed to undertake fleet support operations, coastal and offshore patrolling, ocean surveillance and monitoring of Sea Lines of Communications and offshore assets, and escort duties.
  • It can achieve speeds of 25 knots.
  • The ship also has an automatic power management system.
  • It is fitted with the latest Navigation, Communication and Electronic Support Systems.

Chiral Bose-Liquid State : New State Of Matter

According to recent research, the chiral Bose-liquid state may be an entirely new state of matter. The term chiral is from the Greek word for ‘hand’ which refers to anything which cannot be superimposed on its own mirror image.

Chiral Bose-Liquid State :

  • Usually matter exists in solid, liquid or gas forms.
  • At temperatures approaching absolute zero, or the world within the atom, things are very different.
  • In these “quantum” states, matter behaves in ways quite different from the solid, liquid, and gaseous states.
  • Under frustrated quantum systems, where infinite possibilities result from the interaction of particles.
  • Researchers used a bi-layer semiconducting device.
  • The top layer is electron-rich, and these electrons can move freely.
  • The bottom layer is filled with “holes,” or places that a roving electron can occupy.
  • Then the two layers are brought extremely close together.
  • The machine is then triggered to create a local imbalance resulting in electrons not having enough holes to fill and this kicks off the novel state called the chiral Bose-liquid state.
  • In this state, electrons can be frozen into predictable patterns, making them resilient to changes in spin i.e a defining characteristic of subatomic particles and even have electrons synchronise their movements.
  • It is very difficult to create such states of matter but going ahead may be used to fashion novel digital encryption systems.