Current Affairs

24 February, 2022

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Centre’s High-Powered Committee Provides National Status to Upper Bhadra Project

Karnataka Chief Minister (CM) Basavaraj Bommai announced the ‘Upper Bhadra Project’ has been given the national project status by the central government’s high-powered committee which becomes the first project in Karnataka to get the status. This change in status will enable Karnataka to receive Rs 12,500 crore grant from the centre and could transform central Karnataka from being water-scarce to water-rich.

Background:
Former CM BS Yediyurappa had laid the foundation stone for the Upper Bhadra project in 2008 to make Karnataka water-rich by utilising the excess water available in Krishna and Cauvery basins effectively. At present, water is flowing to Vani Vilas Sagar Dam, which has made the region water-rich.

About Upper Bhadra Project:
i.Upper Bhadra Project is a major lift irrigation scheme under implementation in the central region of Karnataka State which is being undertaken by ‘Visvesvaraya Jala Nigam Limited’.

Objective – To provide a sustainable irrigation facility in the Kharif season and to recharge the groundwater table with fewer chemical contaminants like fluoride.

ii.The project received administrative approval in 2003 at an estimated cost of Rs. 2,813 crore.
iii.The project is designed to irrigate 2.25 lakh hectares in Chitradurga, Davangere, Tumakuru, and parts of Chikkamagaluru In the 1st stage of the project water will be lifted from Tunga to Bhadra and in the 2nd stage lifting of water will be from Bhadra reservoir, providing it to tunnel near Ajjampura through gravity canal in Tungabhadra sub-basin of Krishna basin

About Karnataka:
Governor – Thaawar Chand Gehlot
Wildlife sanctuaries – Antelope wildlife Sanctuary, Sharavathi Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, Shettihalli Wildlife Sanctuary
Airport – Mysore Airport (Mandakalli airport)

MoW&CD extends PM CARES for Children Scheme till February 28 2022

The Ministry of Women and Child Development (MoW&CD) extended the time period PM CARES scheme for Children till 28 February 2022 (earlier, valid till 31 December 2021). It covers all children who have not completed 18 years of age at the time of death of their parents, surviving parent, legal guardian, adoptive parents or single adoptive parent due to COVID 19 pandemic. Starting from 11 March 2020 to 28 Feb 2022.

PM CARES – Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund. Applications can be submitted at https://pmcaresforchildren.in.
About Ministry of Women and Child Development (MoW&CD):
Cabinet minister- Smriti Zubin Irani(Constituency- Amethi, Uttar Pradesh)
Minister of state-Dr. Munjpara Mahendrabhai (Constituency- Surendranagar, Gujarat)

Ministry of Education Approves Extension of NMMSS for 5 Years (2021-22 to 2025-26)

The Ministry of Education (MoE) has approved the continuation of the Central Sector National Means-cum-Merit Scholarship (NMMSS) over the 15th Finance Commission cycle for 5 years (2021-22 to 2025-26), intending to provide scholarships to 14.76 lakh students with financial outlay of Rs. 1827.00 crore that holds minor changes in eligibility criteria such as increasing income ceiling.

Objective – To award economically weaker students who are meritorious inorder to reduce drop-outs at the 8th grade and to encourage them to continue their education at a secondary stage. The income ceiling under the eligibility criteria for the scholarship has been changed from Rs.1.5 lakh per annum to Rs.3.5 lakh per annum and the renewal criteria under the scheme were also revised. Since its inception in 2008-09, 22.06 lakh scholarships have been sanctioned till 2020-21, at a total cost of Rs 1783.03 crore.

Eligibility:
i.The student must have a minimum of 55 % marks or equivalent grade in Class VII examination for appearing in the selection test for award of scholarship (relaxable by 5% for SC and ST students). The National Means-cum-Merit Scholarship (NMMSS) is boarded on the National Scholarship Portal (NSP).

ii.The student should be studying as a regular student in Government, Government-aided and local body schools.
Scholarship amount:
i.The students are selected for the scholarship through an exam conducted by the state and Union Territory (UT) government.
ii.Every year, 1 lakh fresh scholarships of Rs. 12,000 per annum (Rs.1000 per month) per student will be provided for students in Class 9, with the possibility of continuation/renewal in Classes 10 to 12, for study at state-government, government-aided, and local body institutions.
Funding:
i.This is the central sector scheme (CSS) with 100% funding by the central government
ii.The students will receive the scholarship directly into their bank account through electronic transfer via the Public Financial Management System (PFMS) in Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) mode.
About Ministry of Education (MoE):
Union Minister – Dharmendra Pradhan (Rajya Sabha Madhya Pradesh)
Minister of state – Annpurna Devi (Kodarma,Jharkhand) ; Dr. Subhas Sarkar (Bankura, West Bengal); Dr. Rajkumar Ranjan Singh (Inner Manipur, Manipur)

Economy

Edelweiss General Insurance partners Ashv Finance for MSME loan protection Plans

Digital Insurer Edelweiss General Insurance (EGI) has collaborated with Ashv Finance, a tech-led NBFC to provide financial protection to the latter’s loan debtors. Under this, EGI will utilize Ashv Finance reach of small business owners across India and offer them easy and friendly, tech powered solutions, coupled with superior customer experience.

About Edelweiss General Insurance (EGI):
Executive Director & CEO– Shanai Ghosh
Headquarter– Mumbai, Maharashtra
About Ashv Finance:
Director & CEO– Nikesh Kumar Sinha
Headquarter– Mumbai, Maharashtra

HDFC Bank Partnered with ICEPL to Finance Asia’s Largest Bio-CNG Plant ‘Gobar-Dhan’

HDFC Bank has collaborated with Indore Clean Energy Private Limited (ICEPL) to fund the conversion process of 550 tonnes/day of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) into Compressed Biogas (CBG) at the Gobar-Dhan plant , the largest Bio-CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) plant in Asia located in Indore, Madhya Pradesh (MP). This is the largest waste to energy project funded by HDFC Bank under its ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) commitments to mitigate the adverse effects of climate change and make the bank carbon neutral by 2031-2032. The plant is expected to treat 50% of municipal waste generated in Indore City and convert to 100% green products (biogas and manure).

About HDFC Bank:
Managing Director & CEO– Sashidhar Jagdishan
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Tagline– We understand your world

Sports

Ranji Trophy 2021-22: Sakibul Gani creates World Record & Becomes 1st Cricketer to Score Triple-Century on First-Class Debut

Sakibul Gani, an Indian cricketer hailing from Motihari in Bihar, created a world record by becoming the first cricketer to score a triple century on his debut in a first-class match, 2021–22 Ranji Trophy. He scored 341 runs with 405 balls, (56 fours& 2 sixes) representing Bihar in the plate group 2021–22 Ranji Trophy fixture against Mizoram at the Jadavpur University Campus Ground, Kolkata, West Bengal. He made his List A debut for Bihar in October 2019.

Previously, the record of highest score on first-class debut was held by Ajay Rothera of Madhya Pradesh (267 runs in December 2018) and Amol Muzumdar of Mumbai (260 runs in 1993-1994).

Miscellaneous

NIOT: Indigenous Submersible Vehicle Matsya 6000 will be Ready in 2024 for Samudrayaan

The indigenously developed manned underwater submersible vehicle, Matsya 6000 that is capable of taking 3 humans to a depth of 6,000 metres (m), will be ready as for its launch in 2024 for the Samudrayaan Mission. MATSYA 6000 is an undersea submersible vehicle designed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and developed by the Ministry of Earth Sciences and NIOT under the aegis of Deep Ocean Mission (DOM). In October 2021, Union Minister of State, Science & Technology and Earth Sciences Jitendra Singh launched India’s first and unique manned Ocean Mission Samudrayaan that aims to send humans for deep sea exploration.

About Ministry of Earth Sciences:
Minister of state (independant charges) – Dr. Jitendra Singh (Udhampur, Jammu and Kashmir)

Union Minister Giriraj Singh launches PMAY Gramin Dashboard

i.Union Minister Giriraj Singh, Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) launched the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana Gramin (PMAYG) Dashboard to monitor the implementation of the scheme.
ii.This portal has been developed on the lines of the Government’s policy of Zero tolerance against corruption by the National Informatics Centre (NIC) of Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) to provide complete transparency in the implementation of the PMAYG.
iii.The dashboard will be used by the stakeholders including Sarpanchs of villages to the Members of Parliament of constituencies of PMAYG for monitoring and managerial purposes.
About Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD):
Union Minister– Giriraj Singh (Constituency- Begusarai, Bihar)
Ministers of State– Faggan Singh Kulaste (Constituency- Mandla, Madhya Pradesh); Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti (Constituency- Fatehpur, Uttar Pradesh)

Four Parachute Battalions Received “Presidential Colours” Award from Chief of Army Staff Gen M M Naravane

The Chief of Army Staff General Manoj Mukund Naravane on behalf of the President of India Ram Nath Kovind, presented “Presidential Colours or Nishan” to four Parachute battalions.
i.The ‘Colour Presentation Parade’ was held at the Parachute Regiment Training Centre (PRTC), Bengaluru, Karnataka.
ii.The four Parachute Regiment battalions that were presented President’s Colours were: 11 PARA (SPECIAL FORCE), 21 PARA (SPECIAL FORCE), 23 PARA and 29 PARA.
Presidential Colours or Nishan:
i.The Presidential Colours or Nishan is one of the greatest honours and meritorious awards presented to Military Unit in recognition of exceptional service rendered to the nation, during war and in peace.
Events:
i.The Colour Presentation Parade included the display of ‘combat free fall’ by eight paratroopers.
ii.Due to heavy winds the paramotor flying demonstration event was cancelled.
About Paratroopers:
A paratrooper is a military parachutist who is trained to parachute in a military operation, and function as part of an airborne force.
About Presidential Colours or Nishan:
i.The first Presidential Colours was presented to The Indian Navy during 1951 by Dr Rajendra Prasad, the then President of India.
ii.In September 2021 the Presidential Colours was awarded to Indian Naval Aviation by Ram Nath Kovind – President of India, the event was held at INS Hansa, Goa.

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