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Daily Current Affairs for UPSC IAS: 7th April 2023

Today’s Current Affairs: 7th Apr 2023 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc

116th Birth Anniversary Of Babu Jagjivan Ram:

He was a national leader, a freedom fighter, a social justice crusader, a champion of the depressed classes, and an outstanding Parliamentarian.

  • In 1931, he became a member of the Indian National Congress (Congress Party).
  • He was instrumental in the foundation of the All India Depressed Classes League.
  • All India Depressed Classes League: an organisation dedicated to attaining equality for untouchables, in 1934-35.
  • He was a champion of social equality and equal rights for the Depressed Classes.
  • He served in Nehru’s cabinet in the posts of minister for communications (1952–56), transport and railways (1956–62), and transport and communications (1962–63).
  • He served as minister for food and agriculture (1967–70).
  • In 1970 he was made minister of defence.
  • He later served as the Deputy Prime Minister of India (1977–79).
  • Jagjivan Ram was a member of the Parliament uninterrupted from 1936 to 1986 (40 years) and this is a world record.
  • He also holds another record for being the longest-serving cabinet minister in India (30 years).

5th International Conference On Disaster Resilient Infrastructure:

The latest conference, the 5th International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (ICDRI) 2023, was held on 4th and 5th of April 2023 in New Delhi, India.

  • It is the annual conference of the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) and its partners.
  • International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure 2023 hosted by India.
  • The Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) is a multi-stakeholder global partnership of national governments, UN (United Nations) agencies and programmes, multilateral development banks and financing mechanisms, the private sector, and knowledge institutions.]
  • The Prime Minister of India launched CDRI during his speech at the UN Climate Action Summit in 2019.
  • It aims to promote the resilience of new and existing infrastructure systems to climate and disaster risks in support of sustainable development.
  • Members: 30 countries and 8 organizations.
  • The CDRI Secretariat is based in New Delhi, India.
  • It brings together member Countries, organizations, institutions and infrastructure actors and stakeholders to strengthen the global discourse on disaster and climate-resilient infrastructure.
  • The ICDRI 2023 will focus on charting these solutions and pathways to Shaping Resilient Infrastructure.
  • It aims at delving into practices of creating risk-informed systems, resilient infrastructure assets and innovative financing to deliver infrastructure needs.
  • The conference will feature the progress of the Biennial Report on Global Infrastructure Resilience, the collaborative delivery mechanism of IRIS with SIDS, and the operationalization of IRAF.

Ladakh’s Wood Carving : GI Tag

In a major recognition for Ladakh, its wood carving has been granted the Geographical Indication (GI) Tag.

  • Ladakh’s wood carving has been known for its intricate designs and unique patterns.
  • The designs and unique patterns, are mostly inspired by Buddhist themes and motifs.
  • The wood carvings are made from local wood such as willow and apricot.
  • They are often used for decorating doors, windows, and other household items.
  • The unique form of wood carving which has received a GI tag is concentrated in the Wanla and Cjoglamasar districts of Leh.
  • The craft has a distinct cultural and religious influence.

India’s Economic Growth Rate Forecast : World Bank

The World Bank has released a report titled “South Asia Economic Focus: Expanding Opportunities: Toward Inclusive Growth,” which provides an economic forecast for India, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan.

Major Highlights of the World Bank Report:

  • India’s growth rate has been downgraded to 6.3% for FY 2023-24 ,and the report cites high borrowing costs and slower income growth as the primary reasons for this downgrade.
  • The female labour participation rate and the size and productivity of the informal sector are also concerns in India.
  • However, the services sector and the construction sector are the fastest-growing industries in India, with strong investment growth and high business confidence.
  • India’s growth rate is expected to grow at 6.4% in FY 2024-25, which is an upgrade of 0.3 % points from the previous forecast.
  • Sri Lanka experiencing a contraction of -4.3% in 2023 and negotiating a USD 3 billion loan from the IMF, while Pakistan is forecasted to have a growth rate of 0.4% for the year ending June 30, 2023.

Avalanche Hit Sikkim’s Nathu La:

A massive Avalanche hit Sikkim’s Nathu La.

  • An avalanche is a sudden, rapid flow of snow, ice, and debris down a mountain or slope.
  • It can be triggered by various factors such as heavy snowfall, rapid temperature changes, or human activity.
  • Many regions that are prone to avalanches have specialized teams that monitor and control avalanche risks by using various methods such as explosives, snow barriers, and other safety measures.
  • Types:
    • Rock Avalanches (which consist of large segments of shattered rock),
    • Ice Avalanches (which typically occur in the vicinity of a glacier),
    • Debris Avalanches (which contain a variety of unconsolidated materials, such as loose stones and soil).

Nathu La (Pass)-Nathu La:

  • It is a mountain pass in the Himalayas in the East Sikkim district.
  • It connects the Indian state of Sikkim with China’s Tibet Autonomous Region.

2023 Water Conference:

In the United Nations, the 2023 Water Conference was held in New York on March 22-24 in which participant members were informed about W12+ Blueprint and its potential.

  • W12+ Blueprint is a UNESCO platform that hosts city profiles and case studies of programs, technologies, and policies that address common water security challenges.
  • It is an informational database for solutions to urban water challenges.
  • Aim is to create a tool that provides insight into how to address common urban water challenges through easy-to-read case studies.
  • Lessons learned from the other W12+ Programs will be incorporated and highlighted within the Blueprint.
  • It will house information on best practices, encourage further knowledge exchange, and become a “virtual Hub” for urban water security solutions globally.
  • Cities listed under this blueprint from India are Chennai, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Pune.
  • The water conference brings together people from different countries and organizations to work together on solving global water challenges.
  • Water problems are usually local, but by working together, countries can learn from each other, share technology, and invest in solutions.
  • The UN 2023 Water Conference’s theme, “Our watershed moment: uniting the world for water,” aimed to support the achievement of water-related global goals and objectives, including those enumerated in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Pair Of Quasars Discovered:

The Hubble Space Telescope recently discovered a pair of quasars from the early universe.

  • A quasar is an extremely active and luminous type of active galactic nucleus (AGN).
  • An AGN is nothing more than a supermassive black hole that is active and feeding at the center of a galaxy.
  • The brightest quasars can outshine all of the stars in the galaxies in which they reside, which makes them visible even at distances of billions of light-years.
  • Quasars are thought to form in regions of the universe where the large-scale density of matter is much higher than average.
  • Most quasars have been found billions of light-years away.
  • Quasars emit energies of millions, billions, or even trillions of electron volts.
  • This energy exceeds the total of the light of all the stars within a galaxy.

Kurmi Community Protest:

Train services were recently disrupted in Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore districts of West Bengal following rail-blockade agitation by the Kurmi community.

  • Kurmi community is traditionally a non-elite tiller caste in the lower Gangetic plain of India, especially southern regions of Awadh, eastern Uttar Pradesh and parts of Bihar.
  • The Kurmis came to be known for their exceptional work ethic, superior tillage and manuring, and gender-neutral culture, bringing praise from Mughal and British administrators alike.
  • Currently, in Odisha, West Bengal and Jharkhand, the Kurmi community is classified under the Other Backward Classes group with the Odisha government also recognising the community under the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes.
  • State governments in Jharkhand and West Bengal have repeatedly recommended the inclusion of this community in the ST list.

Vaikom Satyagraha:

As the year 2024 marks the centenary of the Vaikom Satyagraha, Chief Minister of Kerala and Tamil Nadu jointly inaugurated the centenary celebrations.

  • Vaikom Satyagraha was a movement in Travancore (modern-day Kerala) for temple entry of the depressed classes.
  • It took place near the Shiva Temple at Vaikom, Kottayam district, Kerala during 1924-25. Vaikom was at that time a part of the princely state of Travancore.
  • The movement began on 30th March 1924.
  • At the Vaikom Mahadeva Temple, there was a board that denied the entry of “lower caste” people (avarnas).
  • The Satyagrahis made batches of three and entered the temple.
  • They were resisted and arrested by the police.
  • Gandhiji, Chatampi Swamikal and Sree Narayana Guru supported the movement.
  • The movement gained prominence in the whole of India and support came from far and wide.
  • The Akalis of Punjab supported by setting up kitchens to provide food to the Satyagrahis.
  • Even Christian and Muslim leaders were in support of the movement. However, Gandhiji was not entirely convinced by this as he wanted the movement to be an intra-Hindu affair.
  • On Gandhiji’s advice, the movement was taken back temporarily in April 1924.
  • After discussions with caste Hindu people failed, the leaders again started the movement.
  • Leaders T K Madhavan and K P Kesava Menon were arrested.
  • E V Ramaswami Naicker (Periyar) came from Tamil Nadu to support the movement and then he was arrested.
  • On 1st October 1924, a group of savarnas (forward castes) marched in a procession and submitted a petition to the Regent Maharani Sethu Lakshmi Bai of Travancore with approximately 25000 signatures for allowing entry to the temple for everyone.