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Current Affairs 29 June 2023

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UTPRERAK: MoS Krishan Pal inaugurated CoE in NPTI, New Delhi to boost adoption of Energy Efficient Technologies Power ministry establishes UTPRERAKi.On June 26, 2023, the Union Minister of State (MoS) Krishan Pal inaugurated a Centre of Excellence (CoE) namely ‘Unnat Takniki Pradarshan Kendra (UTPRERAK)’/’Advanced Industrial Technology Demonstration Centre (AITDC)’ at the National Power Training Institute (NPTI), Badarpur in New Delhi (Delhi). The MoS also released the logo of the Centre and released the brochure on the Centre.
ii.It has been set up by the Bureau of Energy efficiency (BEE), Ministry of Power (MoP) to boost industry adoption of clean and energy efficient technologies and boost India’s global energy transition impact, and make it a Developed Nation by 2047.
iii.MoP will allocate sufficient funds under the budget for BEE.
iv.The event also saw the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between BEE and NPTI.
About Bureau of Energy efficiency (BEE):
It was established on March 1, 2002 under the provisions of the Energy Conservation Act, 2001.
Director General– Abhay Bakre
Headquarter– New Delhi, Delhi
Parent Ministry– Ministry of Power
>> Read Full News

DRDO organisedAnusandhaan Chintan Shivir’; Released list of 75 Tech Priority AreasDRDO organises ‘Anusandhaan Chintan Shivir’On 27th June 2023, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) organised “Anusandhaan Chintan Shivir” in New Delhi, Delhi to encourage Defence Research and Development(R&D) within the industry and academia.

  • Chief of Defence Staff General Anil Chauhan graced the event as the Chief Guest.
  • During the event, DRDO released DRDO Technology Foresight 2023, a list of 75 technology priority areas for Industry and Academia.

DGR & IBM signed MoU to generate employment for Ex-servicemen
Directorate General Resettlement (DGR) under the Department of Ex-Servicemen Welfare, Ministry of Defence(MoD), signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) with IBM (International Business Machines Corporation) to generate employment for Ex-servicemen and facilitate their seamless integration into the civilian workforce.
About Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO):
Chairman– Dr Sameer V. Kamath
Headquarters– New Delhi, Delhi
>> Read Full News

Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal Launches New CSR Guidelines ‘Sagar Samajik SahayogShri Sarbananda Sonowal launches New CSR guidelines ‘Sagar Samajik Sahayog’On 27th June 2023, The Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and Ayush Sarbananda Sonowal launched ‘Sagar Samajik Sahayyog’ the new guidelines of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways in New Delhi, Delhi.The new guidelines empower ports to undertake CSR activities directly by addressing local community issues.

  • The rules would impact Projects and programmes involved in the activities listed in Section 70 of the Major Port Authorities Act, 2021.

CSR Committee:
i.A CSR Committee will be formed in each major port headed by the Deputy Chairperson of the Major Port and shall have two other Members.
ii.To integrate CSR in Business Plan each major port shall prepare a CSR Plan for every financial year with the social and environmental concerns related to the business of the entity.
CSR funding guidelines:
Sagar Samajik Sahayyog guidelines will enable the ports in India to allocate a specific percentage of their net annual profit based on their turnover for implementation and monitoring of CSR activities.
i.Ports with an annual turnover of less than Rs 100 crores will spend 3-5% of their net annual profit.
ii.Ports with a turnover between Rs 100 to 500 crores will spend 2-3% of their net annual profit.
iii.Ports with a turnover exceeding Rs 500 crores will spend 0.5-2% of their net annual profit.
About Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways:
Union Minister- Sarbananda Sonowal, Assam
Minister of State- Shantanu Thakur(Constituency-Bangaon, West Bengal)
>> Read Full News

Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off 5 Vande Bharat trains from Bhopal, Madhya PradeshPM Modi flags off 5 Vande Bharat trains from BhopalOn 27th June 2023, Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister (PM) of India flagged off 5 new Vande Bharat trains connecting important cities in different parts of India  from Rani Kamalapati railway station in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh (MP). This is for the first time so many Vande Bharat trains have been launched in one day.

  • These trains will improve economic connectivity across India by connecting various regions in Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Jharkhand, Bihar, Karnataka and Maharashtra.
  • Among the 5 trains, 2 trains were physically flagged off and 3 in virtual mode. The 5 new trains increased the total number of Vande Bharat Express trains to 23.

5 Vande Bharat trains:

  • Rani Kamalapati (Bhopal, MP)-Jabalpur, MP
  • Khajuraho (Bhopal, MP)-Indore, MP
  • Madgaon (Goa)-Mumbai, Maharashtra
  • Dharwad-Bengaluru, Karnataka
  • Hatia (Ranchi, Jharkhand)-Patna, Bihar
  • Madhya Pradesh got 2 Vande Bharat trains.

i. The trains are designed to run at a speed of 110 kmph to 130 kmph, the average running speed on the ground ranges between 63 to 96 kmph.
ii. The routes are smaller versions, comprising eight coaches instead of sixteen coaches.
Rani Kamalapati-Jabalpur:
i. The train of MP will connect Mahakaushal region (Jabalpur, MP) to Central region (Bhopal) of MP, and it will be nearly two hours and 30 minutes faster than the existing fastest train on the route.
ii. Tourist places like Bheraghat, Pachmarhi, and Satpura, etc in the region will be benefitted by the enhanced connectivity.
i. It will be the first Vande Bharat train for Jharkhand and Bihar and the average speed of the train on the Ranchi-Patna route is not more than 63 kmph.
ii. A rail distance of 379 km between Ranchi and Patna is currently traversed in 6 hours, it will boost connectivity between Patna and Ranchi and will help the commuters save one hour and 25 minutes of journey time on the existing route.
i. It will connect major cities in Karnataka- Dharwad, Hubballi, and Davangere with the silicon city, Bengaluru.
ii. It will be faster by about 30 minutes compared to the fastest train on the route.
i. It will be Goa’s first Vande Bharat Express, covering a distance of 586 km; it will connect Mumbai’s ChhatrapatiShivajiMaharaj Terminus to Goa’s Madgaon
ii. It will also link Dadar, Thane, Panvel, Khed, Ratnagiri, Kankavali stations in Maharashtra and Thivim in Goa.
Vande Bharat trains:
i. Government of India (GoI) launched the first Vande Bharat trains in February 2019 in New Delhi, Delhi.
ii. It provides passengers with world-class comfortable travelling experience and advanced state-of-the-art safety features, including KAVACH technology, an Automatic Train Protection (ATP) System developed by Indian Railways through Research Designs & Standards Organisation (RDSO) for enhancing safety of running trains.
Note: Of the 23 Vande Bharat trains, the New Delhi(Delhi)-Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) train is the fastest, running at 96 kilometre per hour (kmph) (even though the maximum speed is 130 kmph) and covers 759 km in eight hours.

Uttarakhand’s Naini Saini Airport Receives Aerodrome License By DGCA

The Naini Saini Airport, Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand has received the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) aerodrome licence to operate civil flights.

  • This license which is valid for 6 months, has been handed over to the Uttarakhand Civil Aviation Development Authority (UCADA) by DGCA.

About Naini Saini Airport:
i.The Naini Saini Airport was inaugurated in 1994, by the then Union Civil Aviation Minister Gulam Nabi Azad in the presence of UP Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav which allows chartered or private flights carrying VIPs.
ii.This airport is located at an aerial distance of just 50 kilometers from the China border which has an air strip of 1508 meters.
Note: 2 major airports in Uttarakhand- Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun and Pant Nagar Airport of Udham Singh Nagar.


Highlights of PM Narendra Modi’s visit USA, Egypt from June 20-25 (Part II)PM Narendra Modi to visit USA, Egypt from June 20-25 2023During his visit to the United States of America (USA) from 20th to 24th June 2023, at the invitation of President of USA Joseph Robinette Biden Jr (Joe Biden) and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi addressed the joint sitting of the US Congress.

  • He has become the first Indian PM to address the joint meeting of the US Congress for the second time. PM Modi previously addressed the Congress in 2016.
  • During his address, the Prime Minister spoke about terrorism, unity in diversity in India. He also said that India would become the 3rd largest democracy soon.

He become the third Indian leader to make a state visit to the country and the only Indian PM to address a joint session of the US Congress twice.
Key Points:
i.Boeing, an Aerospace and defense manufacturer in the United States, has announced a USD 100 million investment in infrastructure and programs to train pilots in India.

  • The investment was made on backdrop of Air India signing firm orders of over 200 jets earlier from Boeing, which include 20 787 Dreamliners, 10 777Xs, and 190 737 MAX narrowbody aircraft.

ii.Following PM Narendra Modi’s state visit to the USA, the three US tech giants of Amazon, Google, and Microsoft, have committed and announced major capital investments and technological cooperation in India for the growth of Indian technology.
PM Modi’s visit to Egypt on 24–25 June 2023:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Egypt for 2 days from June 24 to 25, 2023 at the invitation of Egyptian President El-Sisi and his visit marks the first bilateral visit by an Indian PM to Egypt in 26 years.
i.He was also conferred with the highest state honour of Egypt, “the Order of the Nile” award, by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
>> Read Full News

QS World University Rankings 2024: IIT Bombay only Indian Institute among the top 150 QS rankings 2024 IIT Bombay among top 150 universities globallyAccording to the QS World University Rankings 2024 by Quacquarelli Symonds(QS) released on 27th June 2023, the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT-B), Mumbai, Maharashtra, is the only Indian Institute featured among the top 150 Universities.

  • IIT-B ranked 149th globally, has emerged as the best higher education Institue in India.
  • The global list is topped by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, United States of America(USA) for the 12th time(2012 and from 2014 to 2024).
  • MIT is followed by the University of Cambridge, Cambridge, the United Kingdom (UK) in 2nd place and the University of Oxford, Oxford, UK in 3rd place.

About QS World University Rankings 2024:
QS World University Rankings 2024, the 20th edition of the ranking, features  1,500 institutions across 104 locations and is the only ranking of its kind to emphasise employability and sustainability.
>> Read Full News

WHO & ICH collaborate to enhance sharing of Regulatory Information globally on medical productsWHO and ICH collaborate to enhance global sharing of regulatory information on medical productsOn 27th June 2023, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Council for Harmonisation of Technical Requirements for Pharmaceuticals for Human Use (ICH) announced a collaboration to increase the registry and sharing of regulatory information on medical products across the world.
To establish a unified language that streamlines global regulatory decision-making concerning the safety and effectiveness of medical products, while offering vital insights into the scope, causes and consequences of diseases and mortality, worldwide.
About the Collaboration:
i. The common language will increase the analysis of adverse events and outcomes, such as insurance claims’ databases, mortality and morbidity statistics, , by connecting the WHO International Classification of Diseases 11th Revision (ICD-11) with the ICH Medical Dictionary for Regulatory Activities (MedDRA).
MedDRA is a highly specific standardised medical terminology developed by ICH.
ICD–11 is the international standard for systematic recording, reporting, analysis, interpretation and comparison of mortality and morbidity data.
ii. It paves the way for enhancing medical treatment and patient safety, and also helps in the overall improvement of health policies.
iii. The collaboration of WHO with ICH’s MedDRA facilitates the sharing of regulatory information internationally for medical products used by humans.
iv. It is used for registration, documentation and safety monitoring of medical products before and after a product has been authorised.
v. The collaboration will also enhance the pharmacovigilance signal detection across even larger volumes of data and the identification of important public health issues.
Note: Pharmacovigilance is the science and activities relating to the detection, assessment, understanding and prevention of adverse effects or any other medicine/vaccine related problem.
WHO, Global Citizen signed MoU to promote Health for All
On 22nd June 2023, the World Health Organization (WHO) and Global Citizen, the international advocacy organisation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to collaborate on joint global advocacy initiatives over the next three years to promote and protect health for all people.

  • Under the MoU, both organisations agreed to advance the priorities and objectives of WHO’s 13th General Programme of Work (GPW13) and the health-related aims of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  • The MoU was signed at the event named ‘Power Our Planet: Live in Paris event’, held during the Summit for a New Global Financing Pact in Paris, France.

About the MoU:
i. The partnership aims to engage more citizens, especially young people, to advance the cause of health for all.
ii. The two organisations will raise awareness about the significance ofEvidence-based health advice.
iii. It also signifies to identify areas and drive action to improve the health of people around the world, which includes advancing health equity, mitigating the health impacts of climate change, scaling up immunisation, and promoting women’s and girl’s health.
iv. It also emphasises the need for adequate support for local health providers to deliver essential care and services at country level.


Kotak General Insurance & Partners to provide insurance products to MSMEs

Kotak General Insurance Partners with to Provide Insurance Products to MSMEsOn Jun 26, 2023, Kotak Mahindra General Insurance Co. Ltd (Kotak General Insurance) partnered with, an AI-powered technology company, to offer customised insurance products to Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in India.

Key Points:

i.Under the partnership, Kotak General Insurance joins and intends to provide tailored insurance solutions that cater specifically to the needs of MSMEs, enabling them to effectively manage business risks and protect their assets.
ii.Insurance solutions would be provided to nearly one lakh supply chain partner ecosystems, enabling them to prioritize growth while minimising concerns related to business risks.
iii.This partnership empowers enterprises to extend group insurance coverage to their distributors, retailers, and suppliers.
iv.Kotak General Insurance also join hands with to offer small OTC (Over-the-Counter) products like health and commercial policy via an end-to-end digital platform.
About Kotak Mahindra General Insurance Co. Ltd:
MD & CEO- Suresh Agarwal
Established in – 1985
Headquarters – Mumbai

RBI Eases Restrictions on HDFC Credila’s Customer Onboarding

On 27 June 2023, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) relaxed the restrictions on customer onboarding for HDFC Credila Financial Services, the education finance arm of Housing Development Finance Corporation(HDFC). This move comes as a significant development, allowing HDFC Credila to expand its customer base and streamline its operations.
Previously, HDFC Credila faced restrictions on onboarding new customers following HDFC’s announcement of selling a 90 percent stake in the subsidiary to Baring PE and ChrysCapital. The deal, valued at Rs 9,060 crore, also includes a capital infusion of Rs 2,000 crore by the private equity firms.
i. To avail of this relaxation, HDFC Credila is required to submit an application for a change in shareholding as a Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC) to the RBI by July 31, 2023
ii. HDFC Bank’s shareholding in HDFC Credila must be reduced to 10 percent by March 31, 2024, to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements.
Expected Outcomes:
Upon completion of the stake sale, HDFC Credila will cease to be a subsidiary of HDFC, resulting in a decrease in HDFC’s shareholding to below 10 percent of HDFC Credila’s total issued and paid-up share capital. However, HDFC will retain one seat on the board of Credila, maintaining its presence and influence.
RBI cancels Mahalaxmi Cooperative Bank’s licence; Allows to operate as NBFC
On 27 June 2023, The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) instructed Mahalaxmi Cooperative Bank (Dharwad, Karnataka), to operate solely as a Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC), effectively revoking its banking licence granted on March 23, 1994.

  • The central bank emphasised that the Bank must immediately cease all banking activities, including accepting deposits from non-members.

Additionally, the bank is required to fulfil its obligations by repaying any outstanding deposits from non-members upon request, even after its reclassification as a non-banking institution.

RBI’s First-Ever Penalty on Credit Bureaus for Non-compliance with Four Entities

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has fined all Four credit bureaus, TransUnion CIBIL Limited, Equifax Credit Information Services Private Limited, Experian Credit Information Company of India Private Limited and CRIF High Mark Credit Information Services Private Limited, for not maintaining accurate borrower data following customer complaints.

  • They have been subjected to monetary penalties by the RBI due to their non-compliance with the Credit Information Companies (Regulation) Act, 2005, and Credit Information Companies Rules, 2006.
  • This is the first such concerted action by RBI towards Credit Bureaus.

Key Points:
i.RBI slapped a fine of Rs.26 lakh on TransUnion CIBIL Limited, Rs.24.25 lakh on Equifax Credit Information Services Private Limited, Rs 24.25 lakh on Experian Credit Information Company of India Private Limited, and Rs 25.75 lakh on CRIF High Mark Credit Information Services Private Limited.
ii.Certain data related to the credit information maintained by the four organisations and Information Services was not accurate and complete.
RBI imposed Rs 30 lakh penalty on Standard Chartered Bank 
RBI has also imposed a monetary penalty of Rs 30 lakh on Standard Chartered Bank-India(StanChart) for non-compliance with certain provisions of the ‘Reserve Bank of India (Know Your Customer (KYC)) Directions, 2016.

  • RBI penalised StanChart for assigning multiple customer ID numbers to the same individual customer, violating the central bank’s norms.
  • Seven co-operative banks were also fined by the regulator for various violations


India’s CAD narrows to 0.2% of GDP on moderation in Trade Deficit: RBI’s BoP Q4FY23 DataIndia’s current account deficit narrows to 0.2% of GDPAccording to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) data titled ‘Developments in India’s Balance of Payments during the Fourth Quarter (January-March) of 2022-23’, India’s current account deficit (CAD) declined sequentially to USD 1.3 billion – 0.2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the 4th quarter (January-March) of 2022-23 (Q4 of FY23) from USD 16.8 billion – 2% of GDP the 3rd quarter (October-December) of 2022-2023 (Q3 of FY23).

  • In Q4 2021-22, India’s CAD was USD 13.4 billion, 1.6% of GDP.
  • The decline in CAD in Q4 of FY23 was due to the moderation in the trade deficit to USD 52.6 billion in Q4 of FY23 from USD 71.3 billion in Q3 FY23, along with the robust services exports.

Key Points:
i.The CAD widened to 2% of GDP in FY23 compared to 1.2 per cent in FY22. This came as an uptick in merchandise imports due to higher global commodity prices led to the widening of merchandise trade deficit.
ii.In the financial account, net Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) at US$ 6.4 billion was higher than US$ 2.0 billion in Q3FY23, although lower than a year ago (US$ 13.8 billion).
iii.Net Foreign Portfolio Investment (FPI) recorded an outflow of US$ 1.7 billion amid the equity segment in Q4FY23 as compared with an outflow of US$ 15.2 billion during the Q4FY22.
iv.Net External Commercial Borrowings (ECBs) to India recorded an inflow of US$ 1.7 billion, as against an outflow of US$ 2.5 billion during Q3FY23 and an inflow of US$ 3.3 billion in Q4FY22.
v.There was an accretion to the foreign exchange reserves (on a BoP basis) to the tune of US$ 5.6 billion as against a depletion of US$ 16.0 billion in Q4:2021-22
BoP during FY23:
i.The CAD witnessed a deficit of 2% of GDP, compared to 1.2% in FY22. This was due to a widening trade deficit of US$ 265.3 billion, up from US$ 189.5 billion in FY21.
ii.Net FDI inflows were lower at US$ 28.0 billion in FY23, compared to US$ 38.6 billion in FY22.
iii.Net FPI resulted in an outflow of US$ 5.2 billion in FY23, compared to an outflow of US$ 16.8 billion the previous year.
iv.Net ECBs to India saw an outflow of US$ 4.1 billion in FY23, contrasting with an inflow of US$ 7.4 billion in FY22.
v.The foreign exchange reserves experienced a depletion of US$ 9.1 billion during FY23 on a BoP basis.

L&T and BSNL Partner for Private 5G Network Solutions

Larsen & Toubro (L&T) Technology Services Limited (LTTS) has partnered with Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) to provide private 5G(Fifth-generation) network solutions for global enterprises providing faster connection speed and lower latency.

  • According to International Data Corporation (IDC), private 5G networks unlock companies Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), and the Internet of Things (IoT) and is expected to grow beyond USD 8 billion by 2026 at an annual growth rate of 35.7% from 2022.

Key points:
i.LTTS will offer businesses devices, applications, technologies, software, sensors, servers, and core integration inside the network infrastructure and this partnership marks LTTS entry into the 5G private network space.
ii.BSNL will supply spectrum using a Public Land Mobile Network (PLMN) or isolated allotment by being the official network provider.
Note: For private 5G networks, LTTS had partnered with Nvidia and Mavenir in Europe and Qualcomm in the United States.


The Academy to honour Angela Bassett, Mel Brooks & Carol Littleton with Honorary Awards at the 14th Governors AwardsAngela Bassett & Mel Brooks to get honorary Oscars for lifetime achievement at 2023 Governors Awards

On 26th June 2023, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences(The Academy) announced that American actress Angela Bassett, American Actor Mel Brooks and American film editor Carol Littleton will be honoured with the Honorary Awards(Oscar®).

  • The academy also announced that Michelle Satter, the founding senior director of the Sundance Institute’s Feature Film Program – which focuses on the cultural impact of supporting independent storytellers, will be honoured with the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award(Oscar®).
  • These 4 Oscars will be presented to them during the Academy’s 14th Governors Awards which will be held on 18th November 2023 at the Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles, California, the United States of America(USA).
  • The winners of these awards were voted on by the Board of Directors of the Academy.

About Honorary Award:
The Honorary Award is presented to honour the extraordinary distinction in lifetime achievement, exceptional contributions to the state of motion picture arts and sciences, or for outstanding service to the Academy. Since 2009, it has been presented at the separate annual Governors Awards rather than at the regular Academy Awards ceremony.
About The Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award:
The Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award is presented to an individual in the motion picture arts and sciences whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry
About The winners:
i.Angela Bassett, whose acting career has spanned nearly four decades, is known for her memorable roles in films like the 1993 Tina Turner biopic “What’s Love Got To Do With It” and Marvel’s “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” in 2022.

  • She received her first Oscar nomination for her portrayal of Turner, and her second for playing Queen Ramonda in “Black Panther”, making her the first actor to receive an Oscar nomination for a Marvel film

ii.Mel Brooks (97) has directed, produced and acted in beloved Hollywood comedies including “Blazing Saddles,” “History of the World, Part 1,” “Young Frankenstein” and “The Producers.”

  • He won an Oscar in 1969 for Best Original Screenplay for “The Producers” and received two Oscar nominations for Best Adapted Screenplay (“Young Frankenstein”) and Best Original Song (“Blazing Saddles”).

iii.Carol Littleton is being recognized for her achievements in film editing, including her work on Steven Spielberg’s “E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial,” for which she received an Oscar nomination for Best Film Editing.
iv.Michelle Satter has played a vital role in the careers of countless filmmakers around the world.

  • She has also led the Sundance Institute’s international initiatives in Asia, Europe, India, Latin America and the Middle East.
  • She has also founded and oversees the vision and content of Sundance Collab, a global digital storytelling community and learning platform.   

President Droupadi Murmu presented Distinguished Service Awards at Defence Investiture Ceremony-II

On 27th June 2023, Droupadi Murmu, President of India-the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, conferred 85 Distinguished Service Awards to serving and retired Indian Armed Forces and Indian Coast Guard (ICG) personnel for distinguished service of an exceptional order during the Defence Investiture Ceremony (Phase-II) held at the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi, Delhi.

  • The 85 Distinguished Service Awards includes 52 Ati Vishisht Seva Medals (AVSMs), one Bar to AVSM, three Uttam Yudh Seva Medals (UYSMs) and 29 Param Vishisht Seva Medals (PVSMs).

Key People:
Jagdeep Dhankhar, Vice President of India and Narendra Modi, Prime Minister (PM) of India were also present during the ceremony.
Ati Vishisht Seva Medal (AVSM):
i. It was instituted on 26th January 1960 as Vishisht Seva Medal (VSM) Class-II for distinguished service of an exceptional order.
ii. It was renamed as AtiVishishtSeva Medal on 27th January 1967.
iii. It is circular in shape, 35 millimetres (mm) in diameter and fitted to a plain horizontal bar with standard fitting.
iv. The medal, made of standard silver is embossed with a five-pointed star on its observe and the State Emblem(Lion Capital of Asoka at Sarnath) on its reverse and the inscription is embossed along the upper rim.
AVSM bar:
i. If a recipient of the medal is awarded the medal again later, every such further award shall be recognised by a Bar to be attached to the riband by which the medal is suspended.
ii. For every such Bar, a miniature insignia of a pattern approved by the Government shall be added to the riband when worn alone.
Uttam Yudh Seva Medals (UYSM):
i. It was instituted on 26th June 1980 to recognise the distinguished service of an exceptional order during war/conflict/hostilities. It may be awarded posthumously.
ii. The medal is circular in shape, 35 mm in diameter and fitted to a plain horizontal bar with standard fittings and is made of gold gilt.
iii. The medal has the State Emblem on it and the inscription UTTAM YUDH SEVA MEDAL (in English). On its reverse, it has a five-pointed star.
Param Vishisht Seva Medals (PVSMs):
i. It was instituted on 26th January 1960 as VSM Class-I to recognise the distinguished service of the most exceptional order and was renamed as PVSM on 27th January 1967.
ii. The medal is round in shape, 35 mm in diameter and fitted to a plain horizontal bar with standard fittings. It is made of gold gilt embossed with a five-pointed star and on its reverse is the State Emblem and the inscription embossed along the upper rim.


RBI approved Appointment of A P Hota as Federal Bank’s Part-Time Chairman RBI approved appointment of A P Hota as Federal Bank's Part-Time ChairmanOn June 26, 2023, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) approved the appointment of AP Hota,   independent director, as part-time chairman of the Federal Bank with effect from June 29, 2023, till January 14, 2026.
About AP Hota:
i.He has banking experience of over 27 years in RBI, mostly in technology and payment systems, from 1982- 2009.
ii.While at the RBI, he served as nominee director to the Board of Vijaya Bank and subsequently Andhra Bank.
iii.He was the architect of NPCI and served as its Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer between 2009- 2017.
iv.AP Hota was appointed as Independent Director of Federal Bank Limited with effect from January 15, 2018. 

Rohit Jawa took charge as MD and CEO of Hindustan Unilever LtdRohit Jawa, who joined HUL as trainee in 1988, takes over as CEOOn 27th June 2023, Rohit Jawa took over as the new Managing Director(MD) & Chief executive officer(CEO) of Hindustan Unilever Limited(HUL) following Sanjiv Mehta’s retirement. He is also the President of Unilever South Asia and a Member of the Unilever Leadership Executive(ULE).

  • Jawa is to get an annual remuneration of Rs 21.43 crore and would receive a sum of Rs 4.83 crore as mobility-linked allowances in Financial Year(FY)24.

Rohit Jawa’s Career with HUL:
i.He had started his career with HUL as a management trainee in 1988.
ii.His 1st overseas opportunity came in 2004 when Jawa was elevated as the Vice President of Unilever Vietnam. Since then he has served across geographies like Bangkok, Singapore, Philippines, China.
iii.He is known for transforming the consumer goods major’s in Asian Markets.
iv.He previously held the position of Unilever’s chief of transformation in London.
Note-Sanjiv Mehta took over as MD and CEO of HUL in October 2013. He introduced several business programs such as ‘Dial up the Big Q’ and ‘Winning in Many Indias’.
About Hindustan Unilever Limited(HUL):
MD & CEO- Rohit Jawa
Headquartered-  Mumbai, Maharashtra
Established- 1931(set up of the 1st Indian Subsidiary)


SBI to acquire 20% stake in SBI Pension Funds from SBICAPS

The Executive Committee of the Central Board (ECCB) of the State Bank of India (SBI) has accorded approval for acquiring the entire 20%  stake held by SBI Capital Markets (SBICAPS) in SBI Pension Funds.

  • SBICAPS is a wholly-owned subsidiary of SBI. It provides Investment Banking and Corporate Advisory Services to its clients.
  • SBI Pension Funds is a Pension Fund Manager (PFM), managing the pension corpus under the National Pension System (NPS).

Note: Currently, SBI has a 60% stake in SBI Pension Funds, with the balance stake being held by SBICAPS (20%) and SBI Funds Management (20 %).

CCI approves acquisition of TCNS Clothing by Aditya Birla Fashion

On 27th June the Competition Commission of India (CCI) approved the acquisition of TCNS Clothing Co Limited by Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited(ABFRL).

  • The proposed combination involves acquisition of 51% of the “expanded share capital” of TCNS Clothing Co Limited (target) by Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited (acquirer).

i.ABFRL, a listed company and part of the Aditya Birla conglomerate, is involved in retailing branded apparel, footwear and accessories.
ii.TCNS Clothing Co Limited, also a listed company, manufactures and sells women’s apparel, footwear and beauty products under various brands.


MoMSME launched CHAMPIONS 2.0 Portal, Mobile App for MSME’s Sector GrowthCHAMPIONS 2.0 Portal, mobile app for geo-tagging clusterOn 27th June 2023, on the occasion of United Nations (UN)’s Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) Day, the Ministry of MSME (MoMSME) celebrated Udyami Bharat-MSME Day’ at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi, Delhi to launch various initiatives including Champions 2.0 Portal and Mobile App for geo-tagging of cluster projects and technology centres for the growth and development of the MSME sector.

  • 6 MoUs between different organisations were also signed during the event.

i. MoMSME and Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) signed a MoU, to create a portal for ‘PM Vishwakarma Kaushal Samman’ (PMVIKAS) by SIDBI.
ii. MoMSME and Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) signed a MoU for giving guarantee coverage to the beneficiaries of the MSME sector.
About Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs):
Union Minister- Narayan Tatu Rane (Constituency- Rajya Sabha- Maharashtra)
Minister of State- Bhanu Pratap Singh Verma (Constituency- Jalaun, Uttar Pradesh)
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National Insurance Awareness Day 2023 – June 28 National Insurance Awareness Day - June 28 2023National Insurance Awareness Day is annually observed on 28th June to raise awareness about Insurance which offers a layer of protection to guard in various situations and about the benefits of investing in an insurance plan.

  • The day also serves as a reminder to people to check if all their insurance payments (or renewals) are up to date.

What is Insurance?
Insurance is a legal agreement (financial tool) between two parties – the insurer (Insurance Company/provider) and the insured (Policy holder), also known as insurance coverage or insurance policy, in which the insurer provides financial coverage for the losses of the insured that s/he may bear under certain circumstances.
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World Allergy Week 2023 – June 18 to 24 World Allergy week - June 18 to 24 2023

World Allergy Week is an annual initiative of the World Allergy Organization(WAO) to create awareness about allergic diseases and related disorders. The day also aims to advocate for the provision of training and resources in the diagnosis, management, and prevention of these diseases.World Allergy Week 2023 was observed from 18th to 24th June 2023.

  • The theme of World Allergy Week 2023 is “Climate Change Worsens Allergies: Be Ready”. The WAO also hosted the webinar based on this theme on June 20, 2023.

Note: World Allergy Week 2022 was observed from 5th to 11th June 2022 and World Allergy Week 2021 was observed from 13th to 19th June 2021.

In 2005, in association with the biennial World Allergy Congress, the first event of World Allergy Day was hosted by WAO.
ii.WAO Board of Directors approved the establishment of World Allergy Week in 2011 following the recommendations from WAO Member Societies and other associates of WAO to expand the scope and timeline of World Allergy Day.
iii.World Allergy Week 2011 was observed from 4th to 10th April 2011.
Observance of World Allergy Week 2023:
Annually, WAO chooses a disease topic that requires greater attention and provides physicians and the general public with a webinar, infographic, and additional information to educate and spread awareness on the topic.The year 2023 will focus on managing allergic diseases amidst environmental changes.

  • The most common chronic diseases in humans are allergic airway diseases of the respiratory system.
  • Asthma affects over 350 million people worldwide, and allergic rhinitis affects between 10% and 50% of the population, depending on geographic location.

Key points:
i.Allergies which are primarily inherited and environmental are more prevelant in Developed nations than in underdeveloped nations.
ii.Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) report of 2023 states that pollen levels are projected to increase children’s asthma-related emergency department visits from 17% to 30%.


FaMe TN & SIDBI signed MoU to attract investment worth Rs 1510 CrFaMe TN & SIDBI signed MoU to attract investment worth Rs 1510 CrOn the occasion of United Nations (UN)’s Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Day 2023 (27th June 2023), FaMe TN (Facilitating MSMEs of Tamil Nadu Government), erstwhile MSME Trade and Investment Promotion Bureau, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the SIDBI (Small Industries Development Bank of India) to attract investments worth Rs. 1,510 Crore to provide jobs for 7,400 people.

  • This was a part of the investments worth Rs 1,723.05 crore which were confirmed at the MSME Day function held under the chairmanship of Tamil Nadu (TN) Chief Minister (CM) M K Stalin in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.

New initiatives in TN:
i.TN Chief Minister (CM) M K Stalin launched the Annal Ambedkar Business Champions Scheme (AABSC) to empower Scheduled Caste(SC)/Scheduled Tribe (ST) entrepreneurs.

  • Under this scheme, a subsidy of Rs 18.94 Crore will be given to 100 beneficiaries to mark the birth centenary of former TN Chief Minister M Karunanidhi.

ii.TN CM M K Stalin inaugurated three new industrial estates at Kodur in Chengalpattu district, Manapparai in Tiruchirappalli and Sakkimangalam in Madurai district at an estimated cost of Rs 153.22 crore providing employment to 21,500 people.
iii.CM also inaugurated the new cashew processing cluster at Kadampuliyur, Cuddalore district. It was developed under the MSME cluster development scheme for Rs 2.16 crore, including a Rs 1.81 crore government subsidy.
iv.A virtual business-to-business (B2B) pavilion was launched to create a market opportunity for the betterment of MSMEs.
v.The first Common Facility Centre under the Micro Cluster Development programme and sectoral trade exhibition was also inaugurated at the event.
Additional info:
Around 6,257 startups have registered in Tamil Nadu on the Startup India platform from 2021 to 2023. It was double the number of startups registered from TN, compared to the period from 2016 to 2021.
About FaMe TN: 
The FaMe TN (formerly known as MSME Trade and Investment Promotion Bureau) was established in September 2019, to promote trade, investments and exports in the MSME (Micro Small and Medium Enterprise) sector in Tamil Nadu.
 About Tamil Nadu (TN):
Chief Minister – M K Stalin
Governor – R N Ravi
Tiger Reserves – Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve, Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, Kalakkad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve

Assam signs MoU with Caspian Equity to foster Agricultural Productivity

Assam Rural Infrastructure and Agricultural Services (ARIAS) Society, an autonomous body under the Assam government, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Caspian Impact Investment Adviser (Caspian Equity) as an effort to strengthen rural infrastructure, employment opportunities and foster agricultural productivity in the State.

  • This partnership implements Assam Agribusiness Investment Fund (AAIF), a contributory and determinate investment trust, having a corpus of Rs 250 crores. 
  • ARIAS will act as the nodal agency for the fund, while Caspian Equity will serve as the fund manager, investing in small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

AAIF will operate as a Category II Alternative Investment Fund(AIF) registered with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) with anchor funding from the World Bank through Assam Agribusiness and Rural Transformation Project (APART).


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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)

S.noCurrent Affairs 29 June 2023
1UTPRERAK: MoS Krishan Pal inaugurated CoE in NPTI, New Delhi to boost adoption of Energy Efficient Technologies
2DRDO organised ‘Anusandhaan Chintan Shivir’; Released list of 75 Tech Priority Areas
3Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal Launches New CSR Guidelines ‘Sagar Samajik Sahayog’
4Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off 5 Vande Bharat trains from Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
5Uttarakhand’s Naini Saini Airport Receives Aerodrome License By DGCA
6Highlights of PM Narendra Modi’s visit USA, Egypt from June 20-25 (Part II)
7QS World University Rankings 2024: IIT Bombay only Indian Institute among the top 150
8WHO & ICH collaborate to enhance sharing of Regulatory Information globally on medical products
9Kotak General Insurance partners with to provide insurance products for MSMEs
10RBI Eases Restrictions on HDFC Credila’s Customer Onboarding

RBI’s First-Ever Penalty on Credit Bureaus for Non-compliance with Four Entities

12India’s CAD narrows to 0.2% of GDP on moderation in Trade Deficit: RBI’s BoP Q4FY23 Data
13L&T and BSNL Partner for Private 5G Network Solutions
14The Academy to honour Angela Bassett, Mel Brooks & Carol Littleton with Honorary Awards at the 14th Governors Awards
15President Droupadi Murmu presented Distinguished Service Awards at Defence Investiture Ceremony-II
16RBI approved Appointment of A P Hota as Federal Bank’s Part-Time Chairman
17Rohit Jawa took charge as MD and CEO of Hindustan Unilever Ltd
18SBI to acquire 20% stake in SBI Pension Funds from SBICAPS
19CCI approves acquisition of TCNS Clothing by Aditya Birla Fashion
20MoMSME launched CHAMPIONS 2.0 Portal, Mobile App for MSME’s Sector Growth
21National Insurance Awareness Day 2023 – June 28
22World Allergy Week – June 18 to 24 2023
23FaMe TN & SIDBI signed MoU to attract investment worth Rs 1510 Cr
24Assam signs MoU with Caspian Equity to foster Agricultural Productivity