Current affairs play a vital role in UPSC civil service exam preparation. The daily current affairs from the daily news’ are one of these important areas. This section gives you a very brief summary of the important topics to be covered. You may use this section for revising your preparation. Nevertheless, we recommend you visit our daily current affairs section that gives a comprehensive analysis of the topics needed to be studied for the UPSC civil service exam.
1. Sir Syed Ahmad Khan
204th birth anniversary of Sir Syed Ahmad Khan was recently observed. He was born on October 17, 1817
About SSA Khan.
- Sir Syed Ahmed khan was a teacher, politician, social reformer.
- He was also the founder of Aligarh Muslim University.
- Sir Syed Ahmed khan has often been criticized as the father of Two nation theory which led to the formation of two separate nations i.e. India and Pakistan.
2. Aadhaar Hackathon 2021
- The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) is set to host the ‘Aadhaar Hackathon 2021’ to identify young innovators in the field of information technology.
- This is the first-ever event being conducted by the Aadhaar team.
3. Energy Map of India
- NITI Aayog launched a Geographic Information System (GIS)-based Energy Map of India.
- NITI Aayog in collaboration with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has developed a with the support of the Energy Ministries of the Government of India.
4. Allium negianum
- A plant discovered in Uttarakhand in 2019 has been newly confirmed as a new species of Allium
- It is a genus that includes many staple foods such as onion and garlic, among 1,100 species worldwide.
1. Resolution of Ordnance Factory Board
In a major decision by the Union Cabinet, the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB), first set up by the British in 1775, now under the Ministry of Defence, will cease to exist.
- Seven separate companies are planned to be created, each doing a specific manufacturing role.
- The existing 41 factories under the OFB will be subsumed under one or the other of the seven new companies, all 100 percent government-owned public sector undertakings (PSU).
- The service conditions pension and post-retirement benefits of the employees remain same
2. Smartphone-based e-voting
- Telangana has developed the country’s first smartphone-based e-voting solution, in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic that has rushed the world into all-digital operations.
- The solution has been successfully developed and tested while a dry run, in the form of a dummy election, is being conducted in Khammam district.
3. Price Stabilisation Fund
The government stated that prices of onion, tomato, and potato are cheaper than last year. It also said Onion prices are being stabilized with buffer stock release and efforts are on to soften tomato and potato rates.
About Price Stabilisation Fund
- The Department of Agriculture & Cooperation has approved the Price Stabilisation Fund (PSF) as a Central Sector Scheme, with a corpus of Rs.500 crores.
- It aims to support market interventions for price control of perishable agri-horticultural commodities during 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17.
4. World Energy Outlook Report
Recently, the International Energy Agency (IEA) released the World Energy Outlook (WEO) Report 2021. It is published every year, the WEO provides critical analysis and insights on trends in energy demand and supply.
Increased Investment in Energy Sector:
- Global energy investment is expected to rebound in 2021 and increase 10% year on year to around USD 1.9 trillion.
- Most of this investment will flow towards power and end-use sectors, shifting out of traditional fossil fuel production.
1. Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index (RECAI)
London-based Ernst & Young (EY) has released the 57th edition of the Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index (RECAI).
- It is a biannual index that lists the top 40 countries by renewable energy investment and deployment attractiveness.
- It looks at individual categories such as solar PV, concentrated solar power, onshore wind, offshore wind, biomass, geothermal, and hydro.
- The 57th edition estimated that future development to achieve net-zero will require a further investment of $5.2 trillion and highlighted the role of institutional investors in financing the energy transition.
2. Healthy Smile
- A bilingual mobile application ‘Healthy Smile’ was launched by AIIMS in a bid to raise awareness on maintaining oral hygiene among children.
- This app is an initiative of the Department of Paediatric and Preventive Dentistry, with the help of an AIIMS intramural research grant.
3. Shenzhou-13 spaceship
China launched a three-person crew for a six-month mission aboard its space station that is planned at setting a new record for the length of time spent in space by Chinese astronauts as the country moves toward completing the orbiting structure.
- The Shenzhou-13 spaceship carrying the three astronauts was launched by a Long March-2F rocket.
- It is expected to complete docking with the Tianhe module and will continue the work of the first three-person crew that spent 90 days aboard.
- China’s military-run space program plans to send multiple crews to the station over the next two years to make it fully functional.
4. China First Nuclear capable hypersonic missile
- China’s military has carried out its first-ever test of a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile.
- It circled the globe before speeding towards its target, demonstrating an advanced space capability.
- The missile missed its target by about two-dozen miles
1. BSF powers and jurisdiction expanded
- The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has extended the jurisdiction of the Border Security Force (BSF) up to 50 km inside the international borders in Punjab, West Bengal, and Assam.
- The BSF’s powers which include arrest, search, and seizure was limited to up to 15 km in these states.
- The objective of the move is to bring uniformity and also to increase operational efficiency.
2. Perseverance Initiates Remarkable Sample Return Mission
- NASA, along with the European Space Agency, is developing a campaign to return the Martian samples to Earth.
- NASA’s Perseverance rover unfurled its arm, placed a drill bit at the Martian surface, and drilled down to extract a rock core.
- The rover later sealed the rock core in its tube.
3. India to Ban Single-Use Plastics
- India will ban most single-use plastics by next year as part of its efforts to reduce
- India’s central government announced the ban this year, following its 2019 resolution to address plastic pollution in the country.
- The ban on most single-use plastics will take effect from July 1, 2022.
4. Hong Kong University ordered the removal of the Tiananmen Square massacre statue
The University of Hong Kong has ordered the removal of the Tiananmen Square massacre statue that commemorates the protestors killed in China’s 1989 crackdown.
What is the Pillar of Shame statue?
- The Pillar of Shame statue was made in remembrance of June 4, 1989, the Tiananmen Square Massacre, which is referred to as the June 4 incident by Chinese authorities.
- The People’s Liberation Army had opened fire on student protestors who had been protesting since mid-April in 1989 against corruption, unemployment, inflation, etc.
- The statue shows 50 bodies with anguish-ridden faces piled up together commemorating unarmed student protestors who were killed as Chinese troops opened fire on them.
National Human Rights Commission celebrated its 28th Foundation Day celebrated on 12th October 2021
- Human Rights are an indispensable part of society and Human Rights in India are watched by NHRC.
- NHRC acts as a watchdog of human rights in the country.
- NHRC looks over the rights that are related to life, dignity, liberty and equality of the individual that is defined in Section 2(1) of the PHR Act.
2. One Health
- Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Ministry of Science and Technology, GoI Launched a mega consortium on ‘One Health’.
- This program envisages carrying out surveillance of important bacterial, viral and parasitic infections of zoonotic as well as transboundary pathogens in India, including the North-eastern part of the country.
3. Climate Resilience Information System and Planning Tool
- It is a tool for integration of climate information in Geographic Information System (GIS) based watershed planning under Mahatma Gandhi NREGA
- CRISP-M tool will help embed climate information in the GIS-based planning and implementation of Mahatma Gandhi NREGS.
4. Flower Scorpionfish
Recently, a fish species named Flower Scorpionfish (Hoplosebastes Armatus) which was only found in the Pacific Ocean has been discovered in the Indian Ocean.
About the Fish
- It belongs to the order of ray-finned fish that is also known as
- It was discovered in the Pacific Ocean off Japan almost a century ago in
- Fish of the scorpionfish family are some of the most poisonous animals in the ocean
1. NGT Unique
- The Supreme Court has declared the National Green Tribunal’s (NGT) position as a “unique” forum endowed with suo motu powers to take up environmental issues across the country.
- The court said the NGT need not wait for the “metaphorical Godot” to knock on its portal to flex its considerable muscles to save the environment.
2. New Rules on Pregnancy
- The government has notified new rules under which the upper limit for termination of a pregnancy has been increased from 20 to 24 weeks for certain categories of women.
- According to new Rules, 2021, these categories include survivors of sexual assault or rape or incest, minors, and women whose marital status changes during an ongoing pregnancy, and women with physical disabilities.
- The new rules also cover mentally ill women, cases of fetal malformation that has a substantial risk of being incompatible with life
3. Draft Rules for Plastic Wase Management Rules
- The Union environment ministry has come out with a draft notification for regulation of extended producer responsibility under plastic waste management rules 2016.
- The draft specifies the quantity of waste that will have to be managed by producers, importers, and brand owners who generate plastic packaging waste in India
- EPR means the responsibility of a producer for the environmentally sound management of the product until the end of its life.
- People and stakeholders can submit objections or suggestions to the environment ministry on the draft within 60 days.
4. New Cicadas discovered
- A new cicada species Platyomia kohimaensis was found in the Naga Hills, Nagaland almost after a century.
- No new cicada was discovered after those found by British entomologists in the Naga Hills in the early 1900s.
- The collection site of Platyomia kohimaensis was a semi-disturbed forest patch, with human activities as evident nearby in the form of farming and agricultural land.
1. Gati Shakti scheme
- The first-ever National Infrastructure Masterplanwas launched.
- The Gati Shakti scheme was announced on Independence Day this year.
- This will bring together 16 Ministries, including seven core infrastructure sectors, on one platform to synergize project planning across stakeholder ministries to avoid duplication, expedite clearances and plug gaps at the right time.
2. Lukha River
- Acid mine drainage, run-off from coal mines led to contamination of the Lukha river
- A detoxing pilot project has brought a river back from the dead
3. Framework for Implementation of Market-Based Economic Despatch
- Ministry of Power has been examining suitable mechanisms to enhance competition in the power sector with the objective of lowering the cost of electricity to consumers.
- It is initiated by the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission.
- In moving towards One Nation, One Grid, One Frequency, One Price” framework is to implement Market-Based Economic Despatch (MBED) in the day-ahead horizon,
- MBED will ensure that the cheapest generating resources across the country are despatched to meet the overall system demand.
4. All-India Quarterly Establishment based Employment Survey(AQEES)
- QES will provide frequent (quarterly) updates about the employment and related variables of establishments, in both organized and unorganized segments of nine selected non-farm sectors.
- The nine selected sectors are Manufacturing, Construction, Trade, Transport, Education, Health, Accommodation & Restaurant, IT / BPO, and Financial Services, accounting for a majority of the total employment in the non-farm establishments.
- The AQEES has been taken up by the Labour Bureau.
1. Green Strategic Partnership
- India and Denmark signed two agreements on research in climate change, while another MoU on setting up a “green hydrogen” electrolyzer plant was signed between Reliance Industries and the Danish company.
- An agreement between theCSIR and the Geological Survey of Denmark to conduct groundwater mapping was signed
- Ministry of Ayush recently noticed safety concerns on the use of Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia) that were published in social media and in some scientific journals.
- It has issued an advisory to confirm that Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia) is safe to use but some similar-looking plants like Tinospora crispa may be harmful.
3. World Bank Revised Estimates
- The World Bank has revised the country’s growth forecast to 8.3 percent for the current financial year 2021-22, compared to the earlier estimate of 10.1 percent.
- The World Bank stated in its latest report that the Indian economy – South Asia’s largest will register the growth aided by an increase in public investment and incentives to boost manufacturing.
4. Moody Rating
- Asserting that India’s downside risks from negative feedback between the real economy and financial system are receding, rating agency Moody’s changed India’s sovereign rating outlook from ‘negative’ to ‘stable’,
- Last year, Moody’s downgraded India’s sovereign rating from ‘Baa2’ to ‘Baa3’, the lowest investment grade.
- In an effort to promote indigenous & Geographical Identification (GI) tagged products, the first consignment of GI tagged sweet dish Mihidana sourced from Bardhaman, West Bengal has been exported to the Kingdom of Bahrain.
2. Minimum Threshold Parameters
The Department of Food and Public Distribution’s recently developed application ecosystem will allow the integration of all state governments’ procurement portals having Minimum Threshold Parameters (MTPs) for monitoring and strategic decision making.
- The introduction of Minimum Threshold Parameters (MTPs) in procurement operations are necessitated to avoid middlemen in procurement and ensure that farmers get the best value for their produce.
- The move is expected to expedite the reconciliation of procurement figures with states and the release of funds by the central government to the states.
3. State of Climate Services
- Terrestrial water storage (TWS) dropped at a rate of 1 cm per year in 20 years (2002-2021), according to a new report 2021 State of Climate Services released by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
- The biggest losses have occurred in Antarctica and Greenland.
4. High Ambition Coalition
India officially joined the High Ambition Coalition (HAC) for Nature and People, a group of more than 70 countries encouraging the adoption of a global goal to protect at least 30 percent the of world’s land and ocean by 2030 (30 x 30).
- HAC members currently include a mix of countries in the global north and south, European, Latin American, African and Asian countries.
- India is the first member of the BRICS bloc to join the HAC.
1. Buddhist Circuit
- Under Swadesh Darshan Scheme, Tourism Ministry sanctioned 5 projects for Buddhist circuit development in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, and Andhra Pradesh
- Uttar Pradesh has a maximum of 6 places related to Lord Buddha and rapid development work is going on at all these sites
Mosquirix was endorsed by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as the first and, to date only, vaccine shown to have the capability of significantly reducing malaria, and life-threatening severe malaria, in tests on young African children. The vaccine acts against P. falciparum, the most deadly malaria parasite globally, and the most prevalent in Africa. Among children who received 4 doses in largescale clinical trials, the vaccine was able to prevent approximately 4 in 10 cases of malaria over a 4-year period.
- National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) approved the Chhattisgarh government’s proposal to declare the combined areas of the Guru Ghasidas National Park and Tamor Pingla Wildlife Sanctuary as a Tiger Reserve.
- The new Reserve is located in the northern part of the state, bordering Madhya Pradesh and Jharkhand.
- This will be the fourth Tiger Reserve in Chhattisgarh, after the Udanti-Sitanadi, Achanakmar, and Indravati Reserves
4. Henley Passport Index
- India’s rank has slipped by six places from last year to 90 on the Henley Passport Index, which lists the world’s most travel-friendly passports.
- The Henley Passport Index comes at a time when countries are easing travel rules for international visitors after almost two years since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.
- The index ranks the passports of countries according to the number of destinations their holders can visit without a prior visa.
The Delhi Cabinet gave a financial nod to its ambitious Health Information Management System (HIMS) project.
- Each citizen will have a health card, which will be a repository of their medical information.
- Doctors will be able to see a patient’s medical history using the card and the patients will be able to make appointments from home.
2. SVAMITVA Yojna
The SVAMITVA Yojna has enhanced the strength of the rural economy and it will write a new chapter on the development of villages in the country.
- The SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) scheme was launched as a central sector scheme to promote a socio-economically empowered and self-reliant rural India.
- The scheme aims at the establishment of clear ownership of property in rural areas by mapping of land parcels using drone technology
3. PM MITRA
The Union Cabinet approved the setting up of seven Mega Integrated Textile Region and Apparel (PM MITRA) parks with a total outlay of 4,445 crores in the next five years.
- The PM MITRA will be developed by a special purpose vehicle owned by state governments and the central government in PPP mode.
- PM MITRA is inspired by the 5F vision.
4. State of the Education Report (SOER)-2021 for India: No Teachers, No Class
On the occasion of World Teacher’s Day, “United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)” released its “State of the Education Report (SOER)-2021 for India: No Teachers, No Class”.
- The report is the annual flagship publication of UNESCO New Delhi.
- The report is prepared on the basis of extensive research.
- This is the third edition of the State of Education Report.
1. SC on FireCrackers
The Supreme Court observed that six major fireworks manufacturers had violated orders requiring them not to use prohibited chemicals such as Barium salts and to label the firecrackers in compliance with the law.
- Three years ago, the court ruled out a full ban on firecrackers
- It issued orders stipulating that only reduced emission and green crackers be allowed, with tight restrictions on timings when they could be burst.
2. Geographical Indicator
Alibaug white onion
- The Alibaug white onion was given the Geographical Indication (GI) tag
- The soil of Alibaug taluka has low sulfur content.
- It has low pungency, sweet taste, ‘no tear’ factor, low pyruvic acid, high protein, fat, and fiber content, besides high antioxidant compounds (quercetin)
3. Marine Protected Area: Antarctica
India has extended its support for protecting the Antarctic environment and co-sponsoring a proposal of the European Union for designating East Antarctica and the Weddell Sea as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).
India Entends support
- India urged the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR)
- India remains associated with the formulation, adaptation, and implementation mechanisms of these MPAs in the future.
- The proposal to designate East Antarctica and the Weddell Sea as MPAs was first put forth to the commission in 2020 but a consensus could not be reached at that time.
4. Astro Robot
Amazon is launching Astro, its first household robot, powered by its Alexa smart home technology.
- It can be remote-controlled when not at home, to check on pets, people, or home security.
- It can also patrol a home automatically and send owners a notification if it detects something unusual.
- Astro can be set with “out of bounds” zones, so it cannot go into certain areas, or could be set to “do not disturb”.
1. Election Symbols
The Election Commission of India (ECI) has frozen the ‘Bungalow’ election symbol of the Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) in Bihar.
Election Commission’s powers in a dispute over the election symbol when a party splits
- According to Symbols Order, 1968, the decision of the Commission shall be binding on all such rival sections or groups.”
- This applies to disputes in recognized national and state parties (like the LJP, in this case).
2. SC steps in to protect Home Buyers
The Supreme Court stepped in to protect home buyers from exploitation by builders, who delay the transfer of possession and often re-draft delivery schedules on their whim and fancy.
- There is an absence of “model builder-buyer and agent-buyer” agreements that provide uniform or standard terms and conditions of sale and purchase of residential flats across the country.
- This has been the main cause behind the fraud, lack of transparency, criminal conspiracies, and unfair and arbitrary trade practices which plague the real estate sector.
3. COVID-19 Compensation
The Supreme Court ruled that the State governments should not deny the ex gratia compensation of 50,000 to the families of persons who died of COVID-19 merely on the ground that their death certificates do not show the virus as the cause of death.
- A set of guidelines is proposed by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) for the grant of ex gratia to the kin of people who died of COVID-19.
- Directed the States to provide relief from their States Disaster Response Fund (SDRF).
- The District Disaster Management Authorities would make the disbursements.
4. Drone Response and Outreach
- ICMR’s Drone Response and Outreach in North East (i-Drone) is launched which is aimed at ensuring that life-saving vaccines reach everyone.
- This is for the first time that a ‘Make in India’ drone has been used in South Asia to transport COVID vaccine over an aerial distance of 15 km in 12-15 mins
- It transports from the Bishnupur district hospital to Loktak lake, Karang island in Manipur for administration at the primary health center.
1. Renouncing Citizenship
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has simplified the process for Indians who want to renounce their citizenship. Provisions have been made for applicants to upload documents online, with an upper limit of 60 days for the renunciation process to be completed.
- For the first time included a column on circumstances/reasons due to which the applicant intends to acquire foreign citizenship and renounce Indian citizenship.
- After being filled online, has to be downloaded, signed, and submitted at the District Magistrate’s office.
2. Jal Jeevan Mission
Since the launch of the Jal Jeevan Mission in 2019, five crore households have got water connections and now tap water is reaching every household in about 1.25 lakh villages
About the program
- Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM)aims to supply of 55 liters of water per person per day to every rural household through Functional Household Tap Connections (FHTC) by 2024.
- JJM focuses on integrated demand and supply-side management of water at the local level.
3. Vayoshreshtha Samman-2019
- Vayoshreshtha Samman-2019 is conferred to eminent senior citizens and institutions in recognition of their services towards the cause of elderly persons.
- It is conferred on ‘International Day of Older Persons by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.
4. SBM 2.0 and AMRUT 2.0
The second phase of the Swachh Bharat Mission-Urban and Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation was launched and it would be aimed at making cities free of garbage and ensuring safe water.
Swachh Bharat Mission-Urban 2.0
- The Mission will focus on ensuring complete access to sanitation facilities
- It addresses to serve additional populations migrating from rural to urban areas in search of employment and better opportunities over the next 5 years.
1. Drink from Tap mission
- The Drink from Tap project has been started in Puri, Odisha.
- For the first time in India, under the project, people can avail high-quality drinking water directly from the tap on a 24-hour basis.
- The project would benefit 2.5 lakh citizens of Puri and 2 crore tourists who visit the tourist place every year.
2. SACRED Portal
The government has come up with an online employment exchange platform to cater to senior citizens seeking job opportunities.
- It is named Senior Able Citizens for Re-Employment in Dignity (SACRED)
- The portal developed by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment
DigiSaksham – a digital skills program to enhance the employability of youth by imparting digital skills that are required in an increasingly technology-driven era was launched recently
About the program
- This joint initiative with Microsoft India is an extension of the Government’s ongoing programs to support the youth from rural and semi-urban areas.
- Through this initiative, free-of-cost training in digital skills including basic skills as well as advanced computing will be provided to more than 3 lakh youths in the first year.
4. Best Practices in the Performance of District Hospitals study
The study conducted was by the government’s top think tank NITI Aayog. The findings of the study are significant as it was conducted just before the outbreak of Covid-19.
Highlights of the study
- A district hospital in India has on average 24 beds per 1 lakh population, with Bihar having the lowest average of six beds and Puducherry the highest of 222
- District hospitals in India have a range of 1 to 408 beds per 1 lakh population. 217 district hospitals were found to have at least 22 beds for every 1 lakh population.
1. Right to Apply for Bail
- The Supreme Court has held that the right to apply for bail is an “individual right” implicit in the Constitution.
- The right of an accused, an undertrial prisoner, or a convicted person awaiting appeal court’s verdict to seek bail on suspension of sentence is recognized in Sections 439, 438, and 389 of the Code of Criminal Procedure
2. Contempt of Court
Highlights of the Judgment
- SC stressed that the authority is bestowed by the Constitution itself, and no law can be enacted to mitigate or nullify it.
- Even Parliament can’t take away the power of the Supreme Court to punish for contempt
3. 66A of Information Technology Act
The Delhi High Court asked the Centre to consider as a representation a petition seeking to remove provisions from the statute such as Section 66A of the Information and Technology Act, which have already been declared unconstitutional.
What is Section 66A of the IT Act?
Punishment for sending offensive messages through communication service, etc. -Any person who sends, by means of a computer resource or a communication device,-
- any information that is grossly offensive or has menacing character; or
- any information which he knows to be false, but for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred or ill will, persistently by making use of such computer resource or a communication device
4. Evidence of Artemisinin-Resistant Malaria
- New England Journal of Medicine published an article `Evidence of Artemisinin-Resistant Malaria in Africa’.
- The study described the presence of two mutations responsible for artemisinin resistance in Northern Uganda.
- The current report of artemisinin resistance in East Africa is a matter of great concern as this is the only drug that has saved several lives across the globe.
5. Hydrogel to regenerate cornea
A team fromIndian Institute of Technology, Hyderabad have developed a hydrogel from discarded corneas from human and bovine sources using a novel and simple method.
- Hydrogel was developed from discarded corneas of human and bovine sources using novel and simple method.
- The team discovered the most significant feature of this tissue-specific hydrogel in order to prevent cells from scar tissue formation.