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Daily Current Affairs for UPSC IAS: 30th December 2022

Today’s Current Affairs: 30th December 2022 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc

Ramappa Temple:

President of India lays the Foundation Stone for the Development of Pilgrimage Infrastructure at Ramappa Temple.

  • Ramappa Temple, also known as the Rudreshwara temple, is a Kakatiya style Hindu temple dedicated to the god Shiva, located in Telangana.
  • The medieval Deccan Ramappa Temple which dates back to 1213 AD, was built by the patronage of the Kakatiya ruler Kakati Ganapathi Deva under the authority of his Chief Commander Rudra Samani.
  • The temple got its name Ramappa because of its chief sculptor Ramappa.
  • Ramappa Temple is probably the only temple in India that is named after the architect.
  • In 2021, the temple was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as “Kakatiya Rudreshwara (Ramappa) Temple, Telangana”.
  • Architectural features:
    • Earthquake-proof: Made out of clay mixed with acacia wood, chaff and myrobalan fruit (a family of amla), the bricks used in building the gopuram of the temple are light enough to float on water.
    • Using this technique has made the temple light, meaning, in case of a natural event like an earthquake, the probability of it collapsing would be very low.
    • Sandbox technique: The temple construction was done using the sandbox technique.
    • This is a technique where the foundation pit is filled with a mixture of sand-lime, jaggery and black myrobalan fruit.
    • This mix acts as a cushion in case of earthquakes.
    • The temple’s many carved pillars are positioned in such a way that when the sunlight hits these pillars.
    • One of the pillars has a Lord Krishna carved into it.
    • When gently hit, the pillar produces musical notes.

Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer:

The European Space Agency has announced that the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (Juice) mission will be celebrated at an event in Toulouse, France, on 20 January next year.

  • Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (Juice) will be Europe’s first dedicated robotic mission to Jupiter.
  • Juice is due to reach the planet in July 2031 after performing an incredible flight path through the Solar System.
  • The mission will enter into orbit around Jupiter and perform numerous flybys of its large icy moons: Europa, Ganymede and Callisto.
  • After four years of moon flybys, Juice will then enter into orbit around Ganymede, the largest moon in the Solar System — becoming the first spacecraft ever to reach orbit around the moon of another planet.
  • The icy moons of Jupiter are interesting as they are all believed to host oceans of liquid water beneath their frozen surfaces.
  • Europa, in particular, is regarded as one of the most likely abodes in the Solar System for extra-terrestrial life.
  • Juice will be equipped with ten scientific instruments including ice-penetrating radar to study the internal oceans.
  • This use of radar is a practical first step in mapping the sub-surface oceans, paving the way for more exotic future missions involving submersible vehicles some of which have already been put forward

G20 Digital Innovation Alliance:

The Minister for Electronics & Information Technology launched G20-DIA as a part of India’s G20 presidency.

  • It identify, recognize, and enable the adoption of innovative and impactful digital technologies developed by start-ups, from G20 nations as well as the invited non-member nations.
  • It can address the needs of humanity in the six critically important sectors i.e Agri-tech, Health-tech, Ed-tech, Fin-tech, Secured Digital Infrastructure, and Circular Economy.
  • Startup products in these six sectors enabled through Digital Public Goods Infrastructure can create a global population-scale impact and reduce the digital divide and enable sustainable, and inclusive techno-socio-economic development.
  • This summit which will be held in Bangalore on the sidelines of the Digital Economy Working Group (DEWG) meeting will be a multi-day program where top nominated startups from each of the theme areas from all of the G20 countries and the non-member invited countries will showcase their solutions to the global community of investors, mentors, corporates, and other government stakeholders.
  • This will create cutting-edge digital solutions in the six themes that bridge the digital divide between different segments of humanity and advance the world economy.

Marital Rape In India : Report

Out of 185 countries in the world, 77 have laws that clearly criminalise marital rape while there are 34 countries that explicitly decriminalise marital rape, or in essence, offer immunity to men who perpetrate rape against their wives.

  • India, is one of the 34 countries that have decriminalised marital rape.
  • Apart from decriminalising marital rape, it mentions that medical procedures or interventions shall not constitute rape.
  • Exception 2 of Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code states that “sexual intercourse by a man with his wife, and if the wife not being under fifteen years of age, is not rape”.
  • Domestic Violence Act, 2005: It hints at marital rape by any form of sexual abuse in a live-in or marriage relationship.
  • However, it only provides for civil remedies.
  • There is no way for marital rape victims in India to initiate criminal proceedings against their perpetrator.

City Finance Rankings, 2022:

The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs launched this City Finance Rankings, 2022 to evaluate, recognize and reward India’s Urban Local Bodies.

  • The rankings aim to motivate city/state officials and decision-makers, to implement municipal finance reforms.
  • The participating ULBs will be evaluated on 15 indicators across three key municipal finance assessment parameters, namely:
    • Resource Mobilization
    • Expenditure Performance
    • Fiscal Governance.
  • The cities will be ranked at the national level based on their scores under any one of the following four population categories:
    • Above 4 million
    • Between 1-4 million
    • 100K to 1 million
    • Less than 100,000
  • The top 3 cities in each population category will be recognized and rewarded at the national level as well as within each state/state cluster.

National Tourism Policy:

Parliamentary committees have concluded that drafting a National Tourism Policy will not lead to the development of the tourism industry in the country.

  • The committee has suggested fast-tracking the creation of a National Tourism Council on the lines of the GST council to directly make recommendations to the Central and State governments on various issues of the tourism sector and its stakeholders.

Concerns raised by the Committee:

  • The committee sought to know the steps taken by the Tourism Ministry regarding its earlier recommendation of including tourism in the concurrent list.
  • The committee is of the view that inclusion of tourism in the concurrent list will help in simplifying the issues of the pandemic-hit Indian tourism sector since tourism is a multi-sectoral activity.
  • It also sought to know why some 20 States were yet to accord industry status to hospitality projects and asked the Ministry whether anything in this regard has been conveyed by these States to the Centre.
  • As of now eight States (Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka, Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand) have accorded industry status to hospitality projects.
  • It expressed concern that in projects sanctioned five years ago or before 2017-18, the progress rates achieved have been less than expected.
  • Projects Sanctioned: ‘Development at Hazratbal’ in Jammu and Kashmir and ‘Infrastructure Development at Puri, Shree Jagannath Dham – Ramachandi- Prachi River front at Deuli under Mega Circuit’ in Odisha.
  • The committee is of the view that projects taking longer than five years may incur high cost and schedule or time overruns, which will put extra financial burden and resource crunch on the Ministry and implementing agencies involved.

Ethylene Glycol In Cough Syrups : Death Of 18 Children In Uzbekistan

The Health Ministry of Uzbekistan has reported the death of 18 children with acute respiratory disease from taking excessive doses of a cough syrup – Doc-1 Max manufactured by an Indian firm.

  • The cough syrups contained ethylene glycol, a substance that ought not to be present in cough syrup.
  • Earlier, Gambia also reported “unacceptable levels” of diethylene glycol (DEG) and ethylene glycol (EG) in India manufactured cough syrups.
  • DEG and EG are highly toxic colourless and viscous liquids which have a sweetish taste.
  • They are often found as contaminants in glycerin, which is used as a sweetener in formulations of many pharmaceutical syrups ingested orally.
  • Acute poisoning from EG may result in Ataxia, Slurred speech, Restlessness, Disorientation, Myoclonic jerks, Convulsions, Coma and Death.

Pension Scheme For Gig Workers:

India’s pension fund regulator (PFRDA) has recommended the federal government introduce a UK-like pension scheme for the country’s gig workers, a move aimed at bringing about 90 per cent of the overall workforce into the pension fold under the National Pension Scheme (NPS)

  • In a landmark UK Supreme Court ruling in February 2021, it declared that Uber’s tens of thousands of drivers were “workers”, as defined in legislation, and not independent contractors. This meant they were entitled to employment rights, including minimum pay and a pension.
  • Since then, the UK regulator has told that Employers are obliged to automatically enrol those identified as eligible workers into a pension and contribute a minimum of 3 per cent of their pensionable salary towards their retirement fund.
  • Since the ruling, Uber and most other companies have moved to reclassify their gig workers as workers, setting up a pension scheme as part of the process.

Chess Olympiad 2022:

With 8 wins in a row at the Chess Olympiad 2022, Dommaraju Gukesh became the new poster boy for Indian chess.

  • In 2019, he became the youngest Indian and then-second-youngest Grandmaster ever (youngest – Abhimanyu Mishra).
  • Recently at the age of 16 he won gold at the Chess Olympiad.
  • Gukesh won the Under-9 category of the Asian School Chess Championships in 2015 and won 5 gold medals at the 2018 Asian Youth Chess Championships (Under-12).
  • 44th Chess Olympiad was held in Chennai in 2022
  • The prestigious competition, which has been organized since 1927,was hosted in India for the first time and in Asia after 30 years.
  • With 189 countries participating, this became largest participation in any Chess Olympiad.