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Current Affairs 21 & 22 May 2023

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AirAsia India i5-767 becomes India’s first commercial plane to took off using SAF from Pune to Delhi On May 19, 2023, AirAsia India flight i5-767 became India’s first commercial passenger flight to successfully take off using an indigenously produced Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) blended Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF) from Pune (Maharashtra) to New Delhi (Delhi).

  • It is a significant development towards the decarbonization of the aviation sector.
  • SAF was supplied by Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IOCL) in partnership with Praj Industries Ltd. (Praj).
  • Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MoPNG) received the special flight at the airport.

Note: AirAsia India flight i5-767 is a part of the Tata group and a subsidiary of Air India.
Key Points:
i.SAF blending up to 1% has been used in this flight as demonstration mode.
ii.This development is a part of Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan mission, Net Zero emissions by 2070 and to develop indigenous solutions to mitigate the environmental impact of aviation.
iii.By 2025, if India targets to blend 1% SAF blending in jet fuel, then around 14 crore litres of SAF per annum will be required.

  • If India targets for 5% SAF blend, India requires around 70 crore litre of SAF/ annum.

iv.Notably, global aviation accounts for about 3% of total global Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions. If the emission remains unchecked, it could be responsible for 22% of GHG emissions by 2050.

  • To overcome this, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has released Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) regulations targeting 50% reduction of CO2 emissions from the aviation sector by 2050.
  • An alternative to the current use of fossil fuels is to use SAF.

The SAF sourced for this initiative by Praj Industries, is in partnership with Colorado, United States (US)-based Gevo Inc., which has developed Alcohol-to-Jet (ATJ) technology for the production of SAF using bio-based feedstock/agricultural feedstock.

GNCTD Vs Union of India Issue on Control Over Services: SC ruled in favour of Delhi govtOn 11th May 2023, The judgment of a five-judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court(SC) of India ruled in favour of the elected Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi(GNCTD) and stated that the GNCTD has legislative and executive control over services, except law and order and land, in Delhi.

  • The SC also highlighted the significance of the people’s mandate in a democracy expressed through an elected government.

The 5 judge constitution Bench: 
The bench is headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) D Y Chandrachud and also comprises Justices M R Shah, Krishna Murari, Hima Kohli, and P S Narasimha.
GoI Passes (GNCTD) (Amendment) Ordinance 2023
The government of India (GoI) passed the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi(GNCTD) (Amendment) Ordinance, 2023, promulgated by President Droupadi Murmu, and reinstated the final authority of the Delhi Lieutenant Governor(LG) in transfers and postings of bureaucrats serving Delhi Government.

  • This strengthens the role of LG as an administrator empowered to take decisions on proposals considered or decided by the elected government in Delhi.

About Delhi:
Chief Minister–  Arvind Kejriwal
Governor– Vinai Kumar Saxena
Stadium–  R.K. Khanna Stadium;  Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium
Festival– Mango Festival; Qutub Festival
>> Read Full News

India’s Defence Production Exceeds USD 12 Billion for 1st TimeIndia’s defence production increased by more than 12% in FY2022-2023 and crossed the USD 12 billion(Rs 1 lakh crore) mark for the first time.

  • At present, the value of defence products stands at Rs 1,06,800 crore and it is expected to increase once the data is received from the remaining private defence industries.
  • The total value of defence production of India in FY 2021-22 was over Rs 95,000 crore. 
  • This feat was achieved through the efforts of the Indian government to promote the domestic defence industry and reduce the reliance on imports from countries such as Russia.

Goal of Ministry of Defence: To achieve a turnover of USD 25 billion (~Rs 1.75 lakh crore) in defence manufacturing by 2024-25. This also includes an export target of USD 5 billion (~Rs 35,000 crore) worth of military hardware.
Key Points:
i.In the past 7-8 years, the number of defence licenses issued to the industries has increased by around 200%.
ii.Several policy reforms were undertaken to achieve the objectives of ease of doing business. This includes integration of the MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) and start-ups into the supply chain.
iii.In FY 2022-2023, India’s defence exports increased by around 24% and reached an all-time high of Rs 15,920 crore.

  • India exports Dornier-228 aircraft, artillery guns, Brahmos missiles made under a joint venture with Russia, radars, armoured vehicles, rockets and Launchers, ammunition and other equipment.

Arm imports of India: 
i.India is one of the largest arms importers. The arm imports by India has declined by 11% between 2013-2017 and 2018-2022.
ii.It is estimated that the Indian armed forces are projected to spend around USD 130 billion in capital procurement in the next five years.

USAID & IACC extends MoU for 5 years to Enhance Collaboration across SectorsOn 19th May 2023, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (IACC) renewed their Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for 5 years to enhance collaboration between the American and Indian business communities across sectors including health, climate change, economic growth, education and women empowerment.
About MoU:
i. The scope of collaboration has expanded to encompass various areas, such as mental health, global health security, gender issues faced by youth, climate change, agriculture, and education.
ii. The signing of the MoU provided a chance to launch a mental health initiative that would focus on mental health in the post-COVID period.
iii. The renewal of the MoU was signed by Lalit Bhasin, IACC National President, and Veena Reddy, USAID Mission Director.

  • This MoU was 1st signed on 2nd April 2019.

Key Highlights:
i. USAID and IACC would establish a working group focused on partnering with local organizations and institutions to advance equitable change.
ii. The working group will collaborate with the IACC members to ideate and develop tools to make programmes responsive to local priorities and draw on local capacities, diverse networks, and resources.

  • This aims to maximise impact by empowering and engaging local organisations that can tailor solutions to community needs.

About the United States Agency for International Development (USAID):
Administrator- Samantha Power
Headquarters- Washington, D.C., United States of America (USA)
Establishment- 3 November 1961
About the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (IACC):
IACC is the apex bi-lateral Chamber synergizing India-US Economic Engagement.
National President- Dr Lalit Bhasin
Headquarters- New Delhi, Delhi
Establishment- 1968

Indian Navy & Royal Saudi Naval Force Collaborate for Maiden Afloat Training of Saudi Cadets

Indian Navy and the Royal Saudi Naval Force of the Saudi Arabian Armed Forces collaborate for first-ever training of Saudi Cadets with the Indian Navy. 55 cadets from the King Fahd Naval Academy, Saudi Arabia, arrived at Kochi(Kerala) headquarters of India’s Southern Naval Command on 16th May 2023 for 24 days of afloat training.
This would contribute towards mutual cooperation between the Navies of India and Saudi Arabia.

  • The 55 cadets along with 5 Directing Staff from King Fahd Naval Academy, Saudi Arabia arrived onboard First Training Squadron (1TS) ships, Indian Navy ships(INS) Tir and INS Sujata at Kochi as part of afloat training with the Indian Navy.
  • The cadets will undergo training on various aspects of seamanship, navigation, fire fighting and emergency drills onboard.
  • To provide first-hand experience of life onboard a sail ship, the cadets would also be attached onboard Sail Training Ship, INS Sudarshini during this period.


India’s UHNWI to Rise By 58.4% to 19,119 by 2027: Knight Frank’s Wealth Report 2023 According to the report titled “The Wealth Report 2023” published by Knight Frank, India’s Ultra-High-Net-Worth Individuals (UHNWI) are estimated to increase 58.4% in the next 5 years from 12,069 in 2022 to 19,119 individuals in 2027.

  • UHNWI is someone with a net worth of USD 30 million or more, including their primary residence.
  • The report stated that India’s billionaire population is expected to increase from 161 individuals in 2022 to 195 individuals in 2027.

High-Net-Worth Individual:
The report also stated that the high-net-worth individual (HNWI) population will also rise by around 107% in a five-year period. The HNWI population is expected to increase from 797,714 persons in 2022 to 1.65 million in 2027.

  • HNWI is someone with a net worth of USD 1 million or more, including their primary residence.

Key Points:
i.After a record rise of 9.3% in 2021, the global population of UHNWIs declined by 3.8% in 2022.
ii.The global UHNW population grew by 44% in the last five years and it is expected to slow to 28.5% over the next five years.
iii.In India, UHNWI population registered a decline of 7.5% in 2022 compared to 2021.
iv.The rise in interest rates and the appreciation of the USD impacted the growth of wealth in India.
v.The HNWI population recorded a year-on-year growth of 4.5% in 2022 and the billionaire population in India increased by 11% y-o-y in 2022, compared to 2021.
Distribution of Wealth (Asia): 
i.Asia is estimated to record a rise of 40% in UHNWIs in the next 5 years. UHNWIs in Asia is expected to reach 210,175 by 2027, taking over Europe and standing only 2nd to the Americas.
ii.In 2022, the UHNWIs population in Asia declined by 6.5% y-o-y due to the reduction of the dominance of Asia in the creation of new wealth.
iii.Despite the decline, Asian markets like Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia were listed among the Top 10 highest growth spots.
iv.Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia recorded a rise of between 5% and 7% rise in the population of UHNWIs.


RBI withdrew Rs 2,000 banknote from Circulation; Exchange/Deposit until September 30, 20232000 currency notes withdrawni.On May 19, 2023, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) notified the withdrawal of Rs 2000 denomination banknotes from circulation and directed banks to stop issuing this banknote with immediate effect.
ii.As a result of this notification, the public needs to deposit and/or exchange Rs 2000 banknotes with bank branches or 19 Regional Offices (ROs) of RBI within 4 months i.e. from May 23, 2023, to, on or before September 30, 2023.
iii.The limit for the exchange facility is Rs 20,000.
iv.While the Rs 2000 banknotes will no longer be issued or circulated after September 30, 2023, they will still be considered legal tender after this too.
About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):
Governor– Shaktikanta Das
Deputy Governors– Mahesh Kumar Jain, Michael Debabrata Patra, M. Rajeshwar Rao, T. Rabi Sankar
Establishment – 1st April 1935
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
>> Read Full News

NPCI introduces CVV-less payments for Tokenized Cards RuPay, the Indian payment network developed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), has rolled out a new feature that enables its cardholders to make Card Verification Value (CVV)-less payments if they have tokenized their debit, credit or prepaid cards on the merchant application or webpage, supporting this feature.

  • This means the cardholder will not have to reach out to their wallet or remember any card details, if they have tokenized their card on the ecommerce merchant.

What are RBI Guidelines for tokenization?
RBI mandated to store customer’s card information in the form of an encrypted form i.e. Card-On-File (COF) to secure transactions. COF turns sensitive cardholder data into randomly generated 16 digit numbers called “token” with no meaningful value, if breached. These tokens then allow payments to be processed without disclosing any customer details like Card number, CVV, Card expiry date. This is called tokenization.

  • Therefore this mandate disallows businesses, payment aggregators, and acquiring banks from storing customers’ credit/debit/prepaid card information.
  • This safeguards the card details of the customer from cyber frauds.

Note: RuPay, went live on Card on File Tokenization in 2021.
About National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI):
MD & CEO– Dilip Asbe
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
Establishment– 2008


NGEL & HMEL signs MoU; HMEL to source 250 MW Renewable Energy from NGEL

On 19th May 2023, the NTPC Green Energy Limited (NGEL), a wholly owned subsidiary of NTPC Limited, and HPCL Mittal Energy Limited (HMEL), a joint venture between Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) and Mittal Energy Investment Pte Ltd, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in New Delhi, Delhi.
The MoU was signed to realise green energy and green hydrogen objectives and the Government of India (GOI)’s efforts towards energy transition.

  • The MoU was signed by V. V. Sivakumar, General Manager (GM) of NGEL, and Girish Ghildiyal, GM of HMEL in the presence of Mohit Bhargava, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NGEL and Harak Banthia, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of HMEL.
  • The MoU plans to collaborate in the field of Renewable Energy (RE) by supplying HMEL with 250 megawatts (MW) of RE-RTC (round-the-clock) power and also exploring opportunities in the Green Hydrogen business & its derivatives (Green Ammonia & Green Methanol).


Siddaramaiah sworn in as CM of Karnataka, DK Shivakumar as Dy CMOn 20th May 2023, Congress Legislative Party Leader Siddaramaiah took oath as the Chief Minister(CM) of Karnataka at the swearing-in ceremony held at the Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru, Karnataka. This marks Siddaramaiah’s 2nd term as the CM of Karnataka. He previously served as the CM from 2013 to 2018. He became the 24th CM of Karnataka.

  • During the event, Karnataka’s Congress President DK Shivakumar took oath as the Deputy CM (Dy CM) of Karnataka.

Thaawarchand Gehlot, Governor of Karnataka, administered the oath of office and secrecy to both CM and Dy CM.
2023 Karnataka Elections: 
Congress has won the 2023 Karnataka assembly elections by winning 135 of the total 224 seats, this is the biggest victory for “any party in Karnataka” after 1989. In 1989 Congress won 178 seats with a vote share of 43.76%.
Key Points: 
Siddaramaiah has secured a 9th term in the state assembly, by winning the 2023 Karnataka election from the Varuna constituency.
Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) President DK Shivakumar, won the Karnataka Assembly Election 2023 from the Kanakapura constituency.
Other Appointments: 
During the event, 8 Members of the Legislative Assembly(MLAs) took oath as the cabinet ministers of the Karnataka government.
List of Karnataka’s cabinet ministers:

  • Dr G Parameshwara
  • KH Muniyappa.
  • KJ George.
  • MB Patil.
  • Satish Jarkiholi.
  • Priyank Kharge.
  • Ramalinga Reddy.
  • BZ Zameer Ahmed Khan.

Priyank Kharge, son of AICC (All India Congress Committee) president Mallikarjun Kharge, was the youngest among the ministers that took the oath.
About Siddaramaiah: 
i.Contesting on Bharatiya Lok Dal Party, Siddaramaiah was first elected as the MLA to the 7th Karnataka Legislative Assembly(KLA) in 1983 from Chamundeshwari Assembly Constituency in Mysuru District.
ii.He was re-elected in 1985, 1994 and 2004 from the same Constituency.
iii.He has served as the Minister for Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Services and Deputy Chief Minister twice with a portfolio of Finance & Excise.
He served as the Janata Dal Party President from 1999 to 2004.
iv.In  2013 he was re-elected to the 14th Legislative Assembly from Varuna Constituency
About DK Shivakumar:
i.He was first elected to the KLA in 1989 from the Sathanur constituency in Mysuru district.
ii.He was then re-elected from the Sathanur constituency in 2004, and from the Kanakapura constituency in 2008, 2013, and 2018.
iii.In 1991, at the age of 29, he became the youngest minister in Karnataka. He served as the Minister of State for Prisons and Homeguard till 1992.
iv.He has also served as the Minister of Urban Development and Cooperation portfolio, Power Minister, and Minister of Irrigation and Medical Education.   

S.P. Singh Baghel appointed as MoS under Health Ministry

On 18th May 2023, S P Singh Baghel has been moved to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare as Union Minister of State (MoS).This decision was made after the recent cabinet reshuffle of Arjun Ram Meghwal who was allotted as independent charge of the Ministry of Law & Justice, while the Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju was moved to Minister of Earth Sciences.

  • Previously,S P Singh Baghel was working under the Ministry of Law and Justice as MoS.

Note: According to the Rastrapati Bhavan communique, the President as advised by the Prime Minister has allocated the portfolio.


First Sea Sortie of 6th Scorpene Submarine “Vaghsheer”

On 18th May 2023, the 6th Scorpene Submarine of Project-75, Yard 11880, Indian Navy’s Kalvari class “Vaghsheer” commenced its sea trials. The submarine was launched on 20 April 2022 from the Kanhoji Angre Wet Basin of Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL), formerly known as Mazagon Dock Limited.

  • MDL has delivered 3 submarines of Project-75 in 2 years and the commencement of sea trials of the 6th submarine is a significant milestone.
  • Indian Naval Ship (INS) Vaghsheer will now undergo intense trials of all its systems at sea, which includes propulsion systems, weapons and sensors.
  • Vagsheer is scheduled for delivery to the Indian Navy in early 2024 after the completion of these trials.

INS Vagsheer is named after the Sand Fish a deadly deep-sea predator of the Indian Ocean.


World Metrology Day 2023 – 20th May World Metrology Day is annually observed across the globe on 20th May to create awareness about the Metrology, scientific study of measurement and its application.
The day also recognizes and celebrates the contribution the people who work in intergovernmental and national metrology organizations and institutes.

  • The observance marks the anniversary of the signing of the Metre Convention on 20th May 1875. 

The theme of World Metrology Day observed on 20th May 2023 is “Measurements supporting the global food system”.
The observance is a joint project by the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures(BIPM) International Organisation of Legal Metrology(OIML – Organisation Internationale de Métrologie Légale).
i.During the 21st meeting of the General Conference on Weights and Measures held in October 1999, the International Committee for Weights and Measures (CIPM) decided to mark the 20th May of every year as the Metrology Day.
ii.The first-ever Metrology Day was celebrated on 20th May 2000.
About Bureau International des Poids et Mesures(BIPM)
BIPM is the home of the International System of Units (SI) and the international reference time scale (UTC).
Director– Dr Martin J.T. Milton
Headquarters– Paris, France
Established in 1875
>> Read Full News

World Bee Day 2023 – May 20United Nations (UN)’s World Bee Day is annually observed across the globe on May 20 to raise awareness of the importance of adopting pollinator-friendly agricultural production practices to protect bees and other pollinators, while contributing to the resilience, sustainability and efficiency of agrifood systems.
The theme of World Bee Day 2023 observed on 20th May 2023 is “Bee engaged in pollinator-friendly agricultural production”.

  • It is a call for global action to support pollinator-friendly agricultural production and highlights the importance of protecting bees and other pollinators, particularly through evidence-based agricultural production practices.

As part of the celebration of World Bee Day 2023, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has organised a hybrid event under this year’s theme.

i. World Bee Day was proposed by the Republic of Slovenia at the FAO Regional Conference for Europe in 2016.

  • In 2017, the proposal for World Bee Day was submitted for consideration at the 40th Session of the FAO Conference.

ii. The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted the resolution A/RES/72/211 on 20th December 2017 and proclaimed May 20 of every year as World Bee Day.
iii. The 1st ever World Bee Day was observed on 20th May 2018.
About the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO):
Director-General- QU Dongyu
Headquarters- Rome, Italy
Establishment- 1945
Members- 194 member states,
>> Read Full News

7th Global Road Safety Week – 15 to 21 May 2023 United Nations (UN)’s Global Road Safety Week (UNGRSW) is a biennial global road safety campaign hosted by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The week aims to recognise and create awareness of road safety and make changes that will reduce the number of road deaths by demanding safe and sustainable mobility.

UN Global Road Safety Week 2023 was observed from 15th to 21st May 2023 and it marks the 7th UNGRSW.

  • 6th UNGRSW was observed from 17th to 23rd May 2021. 

The theme for UNGRSW 2023 is “StreetsforLife #RethinkMobility”.

i.The proposal to organize a Global Road Safety Week was first made by the Working Party on Road Traffic Safety of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) in March 2005.
ii.On 26th October 2005, the United Nations General Assembly(UNGA) officially expressed its support for the UNECE to host global road safety week in resolution A/RES/60/5 on Improving global road safety.
iii. The 1st ever UNGRSW was observed from 23rd to 29th April 2007.
iv. UNGA has mandated the WHO and the UN Regional Commissions to host the biennial UN Global Road Safety Week.

  • The week has been observed every two years since 2013.

Key Points:
i. Road traffic injuries are a leading cause of death and disability globally, with around 1.3 million people killed and as many as 50 million people injured each year.
ii. Globally, 1 of every 4 deaths occurs among pedestrians and cyclists.
iii. The Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2021-2030 reflects an ambitious target to reduce road traffic deaths and injuries by 50% by 2030.

  • It highlights that they can be avoided if the entire transportation system is addressed, taking action to ensure safe roads, vehicles, and behaviours, and to improve emergency care.

iv. WHO focuses on sustainable transport, in particular the need to shift to walking, cycling and using public transport.
v. WHO organised events and activities and shared messages and materials on social media with the hashtags: #RethinkMobility, #StreetsforLife, and #RoadSafety.


Telangana Home Minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali launches “SAHAS”; An Initiative to Make Workplaces Safer for Women

On 19th May 2023, Mohammed Mahmood Ali, Minister of Home, Prisons, and Fire Services of Telangana, inaugurated the “SAHAS” initiative, which means ‘Courage’, aimed at enhancing support systems for women facing workplace sexual harassment.
SAHAS is the first of its kind State Police- Industry Body collaborative initiative to strengthen the ecosystem of support for women employees in workplaces across Telangana.

  • The SAHAS project was conceptualised by Shikha Goel, DGP (Director General of Police) Women Safety Wing.
  • The initiative includes the launch of the Sahas Microsite, Sahas Sathi Chatbot, Sahas Whatsapp Number, Forum, and online support facilities in Hyderabad, Telangana.
  • The Sahas initiative is sponsored and supported by Ixoreal Biomed, the manufacturer of “KSM-66 Ashwagandha”.


List of Current Governors in India – February 2023

List of Current Chief Ministers in India – February 2023


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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)

S.noCurrent Affairs 21 & 22 May 2023
1AirAsia India i5-767 becomes India’s first commercial plane to took off using SAF from Pune to Delhi
2GNCTD Vs Union of India Issue on Control Over Services: SC ruled in favour of Delhi govt
3India’s Defence Production Exceeds USD 12 Billion for 1st Time
4USAID & IACC extends MoU for 5 years to Enhance Collaboration across Sectors
5Indian Navy & Royal Saudi Naval Force Collaborate for Maiden Afloat Training of Saudi Cadets
6India’s UHNWI to Rise By 58.4% to 19,119 by 2027: Knight Frank’s Wealth Report 2023
7RBI withdrew Rs 2,000 banknote from Circulation; Exchange/Deposit until September 30, 2023
8NPCI introduces CVV-less payments for Tokenized Cards
9NGEL & HMEL signs MoU; HMEL to source 250 MW Renewable Energy from NGEL
10Siddaramaiah sworn in as CM of Karnataka, DK Shivakumar as Dy CM
11S.P. Singh Baghel appointed as MoS under Health Ministry
12First Sea Sortie of 6th Scorpene Submarine “Vaghsheer”
13World Metrology Day 2023 – 20th May
14World Bee Day 2023 – May 20
157th Global Road Safety Week – 15 to 21 May 2023
16Telangana Home Minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali launches “SAHAS”; An Initiative to Make Workplaces Safer for Women