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National Current Affairs February 4th Week 2021

Worlds Largest Stadium is Inaugurated in Gujarat:

On February 24, 2021, in Motera, Gujarat, Indian President Ram Nath Kovind opened the largest stadium in the world.
 
Highlights: 
♦ Motera Stadium was renamed Narendra Modi Stadium afterwards. The Melbourne Cricket Ground has been surpassed by this stadium to become the world`s largest stadium.
♦ By hosting the second home pink ball test match on February 24 between India and Britain, the stadium will make history.
♦ In 2016, the old Motera Stadium was demolished and at that time it could accommodate 54,000 spectators. Therefore, in January 2018, the foundation was laid for the new cricket stadium. The Gujarat Cricket Association laid the foundation. Its construction was finished in two years` time.
Amenities of the Stadium: 
♦ By equipping it with all the latest facilities and technology needed for today`s cricket, the new stadium was built. It consists of four dressing rooms that are now required to host twenty or twenty back to back games.
♦ An region of 63 acres surrounds the stadium. It has a capacity of 1.1 million people, which exceeds Melbourne Stadium`s capacity of 90,000 people. It is projected that its cost of construction is Rs. 8 billion Larsen & Toubro designed it.
♦ 76 business gift boxes that can hold 25 people are also included in the stadium. In addition, it also contains an indoor school, a swimming pool at the Olympic standard, four athletes` dressing rooms, a GCA clubhouse and a food court.
♦ 11 pitches were prepared in the cricket field, consisting of 5 black soil and 6 red soil. As a driving range and main court, this is the first stadium to use coloured clay. One of its key features is that asphalt can dry in just 30 minutes in the rain.

Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram States Celebrated their Statehood Day on 20 February:

Northeast Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram are celebrating the nation`s founding anniversary. On February 20, 1987, the two countries were created.
 
Arunachal Pradesh:
♦ On this occasion, President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Minister of the Federal Republic and Minister-in-Chief, wished the States well. In northeastern India, Arunachal Pradesh is a state.
♦ The state borders the states of Assam and Nagaland in the south. With Bhutan to the west and Myanmar to the east, it also has international boundaries.
♦ The Chinese boundary with the northern part of the McMahon Line has also been contested by the military. The Tibet Autonomous Region`s boundary is 1,129 kilometers long.
♦ In northeast India, the state is the largest state among the seven sister states.
♦ The state reported a population of 1,328,611 according to the 2011 census. Its surface is 83,743 square miles. The state is a state that is ethnically diverse. This is the hometown of the people of Mongpa, Tani, Thai and Naga.
 
Mizoram:
♦ The name of the state is derived in the language of Mizo from the word Mizo, the land. "Mizoram" means "the land of Mizos"
♦ The state is situated in northeast India`s old Assam area. It is the most landlocked state in India. Three of the seven sister states of Old Assam are bordered by it, namely Assam, Tripura and Manipur.
♦ With a total length of 722 kilometers, the state of Mizoram also shares international boundaries with Bangladesh and Myanmar. The state did not become part of Assam until 1972.
♦ The state became a federal territory in 1972. Finally, in 1986, Utah was given the freedom to create a state according to the 53rd Amendment to the Constitution of India. And, on February 20, 1987, Mizoram finally became India`s 23rd county.

Power sector reforms For Five States:

Partial power sector reforms were carried out by the other five states and additional borrowing of Rs. 2,094 crore was obtained.
 
Highlights:
♦ The States of Bihar, Goa, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand have successfully achieved the objectives set by the Ministry of Power to minimize Aggregate Technical & Commercial (AT&C) losses or to achieve the Average Supply Costs and Average Revenue Realization (ACS-ARR) distance goal reduction.
♦ Reducing AT&C losses and the ACS-ARR gap are two of the three Power Sector reforms identified by the Ministry of Finance`s Department of Expenditure.
♦ Part of the extra borrowing cap of the state is connected to the Power Sector reform.
♦ States are allowed to borrow funds equal to 0.05 percent of the Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) in order to meet the state goal of minimizing AT&C losses and to receive an additional 0.05 percent GSDP in order to reach the ACS-ARR distance target.
♦ GOI raised the state`s borrowing cap by 2 per cent of its GSDP in response to the threats presented by the pandemic.
♦ Half of this special allocation is connected to the states` citizen-centric reforms.
 
The four citizen-centric reform areas identified are:
♦ The One Country One Ration Card Scheme Implementation (completed by 16 states)
♦ Ease of doing business reform (completed by 18 states)
♦ Urban Local body/utility reforms (completed by 6 states)
♦ Power sector reforms (completed by 7 state)
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Karnataka to Host Khelo India University Games:

Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa has announced that the second Indian Khelo India University Game (KIUG) will be hosted by Karnataka in 2021. The Khelo University Games in India will be hosted by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
 
Highlights:
♦ The game will be held at the University of Ja Na and other state venues. In collaboration with the Association of Indian Universities, this university will organize the Olympic Games (AIU).
♦ Khelo Indian University Game (KIUG) is the largest university multi-sport game at the national level in India.
♦ The event noted the competitive participation in various sporting disciplines of athletes from different universities across the world.
♦ In cooperation with the University Association of India, the Indian Olympic Association and the National Sports Federation, Khelo Indian University Game is organized by the Youth Affairs and Sports and Sports Authority of India (SAI).
♦ After the successful holding of the Khelo Indian Youth Games, the event was launched. The aim of the competition organization is to attract sports talent so that they can represent India in such things as
♦ In February, the first edition of the event was held in Bhubaneswar. A total of 3,182 participants participated in the U-25 age group in the 2020 event. They come from 158 state-wide universities and schools,
♦ KIUG 2021 - Yogasana and Mallakhamb have also been added to the game list in this scenario. The aim of this is to uphold and encourage the century-old sports discipline of India. Organizers believe that the number of participants this year will be increased by this step.
♦ The Sports Authority of India, set up in 1982, is the largest national sports body. It was set up to establish sports in India by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. It also manages the High Altitude Training Center of Netaji Subhash in Shilaroo, Himachal Pradesh State. Other stadiums, including Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Indira Gandhi Arena, Dhyan Chand National Stadium, Dr. Karni Singh Shooting Range, etc. are also managed by the Indian Sports Authority.
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Khelo India National Winter Games to Begin:

 
The 2nd Khelo India National Winter Games will open on February 26. 
 
Highlights: 
♦ From February 26 to March 2, 2021, the Games will be held in Gulmarg, Jammu and Kashmir. 
♦ The Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, the J&K Sports Council, and the J&K Winter Games Association are all working together to put on this case.
♦ Alpine skiing, Nordic skiing, snowboarding, ski mountaineering, ice hockey, cycling, icefields, and other sports will be available. 
♦ Twenty-seven states, union territories, and boards are sending teams to play in the Khelo India National Winter Games. 
♦ Khelo India is a government-initiated national sports development programme aimed at restoring the sports culture of India at the grassroots level, thus making India a sports country.

National Current Affairs February 3rd Week 2021

APEDA upgrades the GrapeNet:

In order to ensure a stable, scalable and cost-effective interface in the export value chain, APEDA updates GrapeNet.

About GrapeNet:

♦ GrapeNet is a web-based software certification and traceability system used to track fresh grapes shipped to the European Union from India.

♦ This is an online electronic service offered by APEDA to stakeholders to facilitate the testing and certification, on the basis of negotiations with exporters, of grapes exported from India in compliance with the standards defined by NRC Pune.

♦ GrapeNet gathers, stores and records data from stakeholders on forward and backward monitoring and quality assurance (ie, exporters, laboratories and PSC authorities in the Indian grape supply chain).

♦ In India, GrapeNet is the first such initiative. An end-to-end system has been developed to track pesticide residues, standardize products and encourage traceability through the different stages of sampling, testing, certification and packaging from retail shelves to the Indian farmer`s farm.

♦ Now, APEDA has implemented GrapeNet`s Blockchain and cloud migration technologies to ensure network security safety for its traceability program.

Digital Insurance Policies to be Issued by Digilocker App:

In order to issue digital insurance policies, the Insurance Regulatory Authority of India (IRDAI) has recommended that all insurance companies use the government`s Digilocker app.
 
Highlights:
♦ Publishing policies would offer a better user experience through the Digilocker app. Claims processing and policy settlement would be quicker using this application. It would also minimize conflicts and reduce fraud through this procedure.
♦ IRDAI recommends that all insurance companies allow their IT systems to communicate with Digi Locker facilities in order to facilitate Digi Locker`s adoption in the insurance industry. It would also encourage policyholders to maintain all of their policy articles.
♦ The required technical guidance and logistical support will be provided by the Digilocker team of the National Department of E-Government (NeGD) under MeITY to encourage the adoption of Digi Locker.
♦ Under the Digital India program, the Digilocker Project is an initiative. The Electronic Information Management Department manages the software (MeitY). Citizens may receive real documents or certificates in digital format under this initiative. Certificates can be generated from these certificates` original issuers.
♦ The purpose of starting the program is to abolish or decrease the use of physical records. By making the service worry-free and welcoming to people, it aims to enhance the efficacy of service delivery.
♦ An independent and legislative body in India is the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI). The regulation and promotion of the insurance and reinsurance industry is the responsibility of this organization. It was created pursuant to the Insurance Management and Development Authority Act 1999. It is located in Hyderabad, Telangana. It is a body of 10 members, consisting of a chairman, 5 full-time members and 4 part-time members.
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Oil & Gas Projects In Tamil Nadu:

On February 17, 2021, the Prime Minister of India laid the foundation for main oil and gas sector projects in Tamil Nadu.
 
Highlights:
♦ The natural gas pipeline at Ramanathapuram-Thoothukudi will be inaugurated.
♦ This pipeline is part of the Natural Gas Pipeline Ennore- Thiruvallur- Bengaluru- Puducherry- Nagapattinam- Madurai- Tuticorin.
♦ Benefits: It would help to use natural gas from the ONGC Gas field and provide industrial and other commercial customers with natural gas as a raw material.
♦ At Chennai Petroleum Co., Ltd. in Manali, the Gasoline Desulfurization Unit will be built.
♦ It will produce environmentally friendly gasoline with low sulfur (less than 8 pm), which will help minimize pollution and lead to a healthier climate.
 
PM to Hold Governing Council Meeting of NITI Aayog:
 
On February 20, 2021, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will chair the NITI Aayog Council meeting.
 
Highlights:
♦ Problems related to agriculture, manufacturing, infrastructure and human resource growth will be addressed during this conference. This will be the Council`s 6th meeting.
♦ For the first time, the newly added UT Ladakh will attend the conference. This year, Jammu and Kashmir would also take part as Joint Territories. The Conference would also be attended by other Union territories headed by the Administrator.
♦ The meeting will also be attended by ex-officio members of the Council; the Vice-Chairman and Minister of the Union. The meeting will also be attended by a member and CEO of NITI Aayog and other senior officials of the Indian government.
♦ Niti Aayog, founded in 2015 to replace the planning committee, is India`s policy think tank. In order to achieve sustainable development goals through cooperative federalism, the institution was created. Some of the initiatives of Aayog include: "15-year roadmap", AMRUT, "7-year vision, strategy and action plan" Atal innovation project, Indian digitization, reform of medical education, agricultural reform, and a series of lectures on Indian transformation. 
Member of NITI Aayog: The prime minister is Aayog`s chairman. It also consists of a council comprising the chief ministers of all states and the territories of the union and the deputy governors of the territories of the legislature and the union. Delhi and Puducherry are not included, however. It also has a regional committee consisting of the Head of State and federal municipality governors.
♦ The Governing Council is NITI Aayog`s sole authority. Both chief ministers, deputy governors of the federal territories, other trade union ministers and senior government officials are members of the council. Regularly, the council meets. On February 8, 2015, the first meeting of the council was held.
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Puducherry Lieutenant - Governor Orders Floor Test:

 
The newly named Tamilisai Soundararajan (Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry), ordered the Assembly Secretariat to convene the House on February 22. A press release issued by Raj Nivas said the single agenda of the session should be to decide whether the Chief Minister enjoys the confidence of the House.
 
Floor test:
♦ The minimum requirement is primarily to understand whether executives enjoy the confidence of the legislature. This is a constitutional framework in which the chief minister appointed by the governor can be expected to prove a majority in the state legislative assembly.
♦ According to the Constitution, the chief minister is appointed by the governor of the country. When a party gets a majority in the House of Representatives, the governor appoints the leader of the party as its chief minister.
♦ If the majority is challenged, the leader of the party advocating the majority must shake the vote of confidence and show the majority of those present and voting. If the chief minister cannot show that they have a majority in the House of Representatives, they must resign. This happened both in Parliament and in the State Legislative Assembly.

National Current Affairs February 2nd Week 2021

Ease Of Doing Business Reforms:

The "Ease of Doing Business" changes were completed by four other states to receive further borrowing permits.
 
Highlights:
♦ "The "Ease of Doing Business" reform prescribed by the Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance, has been carried out by the four states of Assam, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab. 
♦ These states are now entitled to mobilize more financial capital and, through Open Market Borrowings, are allowed to collect an additional Rs.5,034 crore.
♦ The total number of states that have implemented the necessary reforms to promote the ease of doing business has reached 12.
♦ The other states are Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.
 
Samagra Shiksha - Funded School is Renamed as Netaji:
 
Under the Samagra Shiksha program, which has been renamed Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, the Ministry of Education has agreed on schools and hostels.
 
Highlights:
♦ Renaming the scheme would help generate awareness of the services in challenging areas of these residential schools and hostels.
♦ These schools would also be inspired to achieve a high-quality education.
♦ An integrated scheme for school education is the Samagra Shiksha Scheme. From pre-school to class XII, the scheme extends.
♦ Ensure the provision of quality education that is inclusive and equal at all levels of school education.
♦ After the inclusion of three schemes, namely Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), Teacher Education (TE), Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan Abhiyan, the scheme was introduced (RMSA).
♦ Under the scheme, from pre-kindergarten to grade 12, school education is seen as a continuum.
♦ By concentrating on two T`s, namely Teachers and Technology, the scheme stresses improving the standard of school education.
♦ In addition, under the scheme, the Ministry of Education provides financial assistance for the opening and operation of residential schools and hostels in hilly areas in the states and union territories.
♦ It also offers financial assistance to open schools and houses for children who need shelter and treatment in rural, underpopulated areas.
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Beneficiaries of Anganwadi Dropped by 2 crores in 7 years:

According to data submitted by the Parliament`s Ministry of Women and Child Development, the number of beneficiaries under the `Anganwadi` government programme has been reduced by almost 20 million.
 
Highlights:
♦ Approximately 1,045 billion pregnant women, lactating mothers and children between 6 months and 6 years of age were recruited by the Anganwadi Center during 2014-2015 at approximately 1.4 million grams. By March 2020, the amount had decreased to 85.5 billion.
♦ The number of children also fell to 6.86 million in March 2020, from 8.49 million in 2014-2015.
♦ In March 2020, the number of pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers drops from 19.95 million in 2014-15 to 16.68 million. The reasons for this decline were not stressed by the government.
♦ In India, Anganwadi is a kind of rural childcare center. In 1975, the Indian government founded these centers. These centers were developed to eradicate child hunger and malnutrition under the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) program.
♦ In 1975, the Comprehensive Child Development Program was implemented. Even though the Morarji Desai government suspended the plan in 1978, in the Tenth Five-Year Plan it restarted the plan.
♦ The scheme involves a bundle of six facilities that are operated at various centers in Anganwadi. Services provide immunization, additional nutrition, non-formal pre-school education, health inspection, health education, and referral services.
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Petroleum & Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB):

Under the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board Act, 2006, PNGRB was created. The Act provides for a Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board to be formed to protect the interests of consumers and organizations engaged in specific petroleum-related activities.
 
About Petroleum & Natural Gas Regulatory Board
♦ Under the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board Act, 2006, PNGRB was created.
♦ In order to protect the interests of customers and companies engaged in particular activities relating to petroleum, petroleum products and natural gas and to encourage fair markets and related matters, the Act provides for the establishment of a Regulatory Board on petroleum and natural gas.
♦ The Board`s duties also include controlling the refining, manufacturing, storage, transport, distribution, marketing and selling of petroleum, petroleum products and natural gas (excluding the output of crude oil and natural gas) in order to ensure that the supply of petroleum, petroleum products and natural gas throughout the country is uninterrupted and sufficient.
♦ The Statutory Board shall register the organizations that sell reported petroleum and petroleum products, set up and operate LNG terminals, etc.
 
Studies on Border Area Development Programme:
 
Two assessment studies on the Border Area Development Program were carried out in 2020 by the Indian Institute of Public Administration (IIPA) and NITI Aayog (BADP).
 
About the Border Area Development Programme (BADP):
♦ The International Land Boundary has been enforced by the Border Area Development Program (BADP) in 17 states (including Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal).
♦ BADP`s key objective is to address the unique development needs and well-being of people living in remote and inaccessible areas close to the international border and to achieve a saturation strategy by incorporating central/state/BADP/local schemes and a participatory approach to the border areas and the entire basic infrastructure.

National Current Affairs February 1st Week 2021

NITI Aayogs Proposal for Little Andaman:

"A proposal called the "Sustainable Development of Little Andaman Island Vision Paper" was created by NITI Aayog. The environmentalists were vigilant about the sustainable and holistic creation of the 680 sq km, fragile Little Andaman Island in the Andaman and Nicobar group of islands.
 
Highlights:
♦ A plan by NITI Aayog to use the strategic location and natural features of the island is the "Sustainable Development of Little Andaman Island-Vision Document".
♦ This will be done by developing Greenfield, a new coastal area, which will develop into a free trade zone and compete with Singapore and Hong Kong.
♦ The proposal is developed around three development anchor points and zones.
Zone 1:
♦ It extends over 102 square kilometers along Little Andaman`s east coast.
♦ It will be a financial district and a medical metropolis that can serve the districts of aerocity, leisure, and hospital.
Zone 2:
♦ Spread over 85 square kilometres of the primitive forest.
♦ It is a recreational area that can have metropolises for movies, suburban districts and a special economic tourism zone (SEZ).
Zone 3:
♦ Spread over 52 square kilometres of the primitive forest.
♦ The nature zone can be divided into three districts: a special forest resort area, a natural therapeutic district and a natural retreat area, all of which are situated on the west coast.
 
Waghai-Bilimora Heritage Line Continues the Service:
 
The Western Railway has agreed not to interrupt the operation of three trains, including the 107-year-old narrow gauge heritage train between Vaghai and Bilimora, permanently parked in Gujarat. Between Miyagam, Choranda, Malsar and Choranda Junction and Moti Karal, the other two narrow gauge trains run. The spacing of the rails on the railway track is the track gauge for rail transport.
 
Highlights:
♦ A legacy of the Gaekwad dynasty, the Waghai-Billimora Train started in 1913 and ruled the princely state of Baroda. Tribal people regularly take this train from inside. The train has a range of 63 kilometers.
♦ Britain has laid railways at the level of Gaekwad rulers and is run by the Gaekwad Baroda State Railway (GBSR) owned by Sayajirao Gaekwad III.
♦ The jurisdiction of Gaekwad spans Saurashtra, Mehsana in Gujarat`s north, and Bilimora in Gujarat`s south.
♦ Damaji I, who came to power in 1740, was the father of the dynasty. Sayaji Rao III, the last Gaekwar, died in 1939.
♦ Trains were powered by steam engines for around 24 years and were replaced in 1937 by diesel engines.
♦ The original steam engine was shown in Mumbai at the Churchgate Heritage Gallery in 1994.
♦ This was as early as 1951, before the Western Railway was formed, when the Bombay, Baroda & Central India Railway, Saurashtra, Rajputana and Jaipur State Railways were merged.
♦ The 63-kilometer-long Billimora-Vaghai and the 19-kilometer-long Choranda-Moti Karal route are among the five routes proposed to be retained as` industrial heritage` by the Indian Railways in 2018.
 
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Rashtriya Yuva Sashaktikaran Karyakram (RYSK) by Youth Affairs Ministry:

The Rashtriya Yuva Sashaktikaran Karyakram Scheme is a Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports Central Sector Scheme.

Highlights:

♦ The Rashtriya Yuva Sashaktikaran Karyakram Scheme is a Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports Central Sector Scheme and has been continuing since the "Twelfth Five-Year Plan"

♦ The goal of the scheme is to develop young people`s personalities and leadership skills and encourage them to engage in nation-building activities.

♦ Young people in the 15-29 age group are the winners of this program. In the case of the unique focus program for young people, the age range is 10-19 years old.

♦ This is an overall scheme that includes the following sub-schemes:

♦ Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan The Sangathan (founded in 1972, one of the largest youth organizations in the world)

♦ National Youth Corps

♦ National Programme for Youth and Adolescent Development

♦ International Cooperation

♦ Youth Hostels

♦ Assistance to Scouting and Guiding Organisations

 

♦ National Youth Leadership Program

Portal Gobardhan Scheme Was Launched: 

The Gobardhan Unified Portal was jointly launched by the Union Ministers to promote the Gobardhan scheme and to monitor real-time progress.
 
Gobardhan Scheme:
♦ The Gobardhan Scheme (Galvanizing Organic Bio-Agro Capital - DHAN) was initiated by the Ministry of Jal Shakti.
♦ It is being introduced as part of the Mission to Swachch Bharat (Gramin).
♦ The scheme tries to protect animal and biodegradable waste and also aims to increase the income of farmers.
♦ The focus of the GOBAR-DHAN scheme is to keep the villages clean, increase rural household income and generate energy from cow dung, which is an important part of the Swachch Bharat mission`s ODF-plus strategy.
♦ The goal of the scheme is to help villagers to manage their livestock and biodegradable waste effectively.
♦ Gobardhan will begin in early 2018 to manage the widespread issue of biological waste in villages, including cow dung, and turn it into biogas and organic fertilizers to enhance the lives of villagers by providing farmers and families with economic and resource benefits.
♦ The newly launched portal will ensure close collaboration for the smooth implementation of biogas schemes/initiatives and their real-time monitoring with stakeholder departments/ministries.
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