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OJAANK IAS ACADEMY

26 July 2022 – Current Affairs

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Income Tax Day 2022

Paper 3 – Economy
Why Should You Know?
The Income Tax department observes July 24 every year as Income Tax Day.
In details –
The Income Tax department observes July 24 every year as Income Tax Day or ‘Aaykar Diwas’, to commemorate the introduction of provision of income tax in the country.
  • The 163rd anniversary of Income Tax Day was observed by Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and all its field offices across India. As part of the celebrations, the field formations held a number of events and activities.
  • The events by the field formations included outreach programmes for taxpayers recognising their contribution to the nation, taxpayer felicitation programmes, contributing for upgradation of resources such as computers to Government higher secondary schools, voluntary token donation to orphanages/old-age homes from the departmental employees’ contributions, organising blood donation camps, setting up medical examination and Covid-vaccination camps, tree plantation and cleanliness drives, among others.
  • In addition, events like half marathon, cyclothon, distribution of board games on tax literacy to children and young adults, cultural programmes, inauguration of caricature exhibitions and such other events were also held.
History of Income Tax Day
  • On July 24, 1860, Sir James Wilson introduced income tax for the first time in India. Wilson did this to compensate for the losses suffered by the British regime during the first war of independence in 1857.
  • ‘Aaykar Diwas’ was celebrated for the first time on July 24, 2010, to mark 150 years of income tax in India.
Income Tax Day celebrations
  • In the week preceding the occasion, several activities are undertaken by regional offices of the tax department.
  • Outreach programmes are held across the country to promote tax payment as a value norm, and to sensitise potential taxpayers that paying taxes is an ethical duty of the citizens.
About Income Tax department
  • Headquartered in New Delhi, the Income Tax department is responsible for direct tax collection for the Government of India.
  • It functions under the Department of Revenue in the Ministry of finance, and is headed by an apex body called the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).

Indian Art-Culture

Paper 1 – Art & Culture
Why Should You Know?
Ministry of Culture Preserves and Promotes Indian Art, Literature and Culture through various autonomous organizations.
In details –

Ministry of Culture through its autonomous organizations viz. Sangeet Natak Akademi, Sahitya Akademi, National School of Drama, Centre for Cultural Resources and Training, Lalit Kala Akademi, Kalakshetra Foundation, Indira Gandhi National  Centre for the Arts preserves and promotes Indian Art, Literature and Culture.

Sangeet Natak Akademi –
  • The Sangeet Natak Akademi (SNA) organizes Festivals all over the country. The akademi gives grants-in-aid for research, documentation, and publishing in the performing arts.
  • Under guru-sisya parampara, SNA offers financial support to cultural institutions across the country. The Akademi’s archives carefully preserve recordings of the eminent and upcoming artists.
Sahitya Akademi –
  • Sahitya Akademi (SA) is the National Academy of Letters, working for the promotion and preservation of Indian literature in 24 languages recognized by it, and also the oral and tribal literature of India.
  • By promoting varied literature of the country, Sahitya Akademi strives to unite diverse cultural, linguistic and literary communities and traditions of India. For this purpose, Sahitya Akademi annually organizes more than 500 literary programmes, publishes around 500 literary books and organizes/participates in nearly 150-200 book fairs and exhibitions.
  • During the last five years, the Sahitya Akademi has been intensely promoting Indian literature in all 24 languages through conferment of Awards (96 per annum), programmes ( about 500 per annum), publications (about 500 per annum) and by participating in the book fairs and exhibitions across the country.
National School of Drama –
  • National School of Drama (NSD) had conducted various Theatre activities during last 5 years, i.e. Rashtriya Poorvottar Samaroh, Bharat Rang Mahotsav, Poorvottar Natya Samaroh, Poorvottar Rashtriya Samaroh, Classical Theatre Festival, National Tribal Festival of Theatre, Music & Art and organized 3 days theatre festival under “Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav” on the occasion of 75th Anniversary of Independence.
Centre for Cultural Resources and Training –
  • Centre for Cultural Resources and Training (CCRT) organizes in service  Orientation Courses and Thematic Workshops for Government and Government aided school teachers and teacher educators throughout the year, for preservation and promotion of Indian art, literature and culture at the national level.
Lalit Kala Akademi –
  • Lalit Kala Akademi (LKA) is working for the development of visual arts in India. In the last five years, the Kalakshetra Foundation conducted various Arts festivals such as Kathakali, Annual Art Festival, Trinity Festivals, Remembering Rukamani Devi Festival, Kalasibiram, KalaSambrakshana, Dhrupad Festival.
Bhasha Samman –
  • For preserving ancient, medieval literature of Indian languages Sahitya Akademi  an autonomous organization under the aegis of Ministry of Culture had instituted Bhasha Samman in 1996 to be given to writers, scholars , editors, collectors, performers and translators for promoting unrecognized languages of India.
  • So far the Akademi has presented 102 Bhasha Sammans in Classical and Medieval  Literature as well as in the unrecognized languages of India.
  • The Sahitya Akademi has a prestigious series – Makers of Indian Literature for Indian writers who have made a significant contribution to the development of literature in the Indian Languages.
Kala Sanskriti  Vikas Yojana –
  • Ministry  of  Culture  is  also implementing  Kala  Sanskriti  Vikas Yojana (KSVY)  scheme through which cultural  organizations are given financial assistance for the promotion  of art and  culture.
  • Ministry of Culture gives monthly grant to its autonomous organizations under Grant-in-Aid for the purpose. The Ministry  of  Culture  implements   Kala  Sanskriti  Vikas Yojana (KSVY) scheme which consists of a number  of  sub-schemes like Repertory Grant, Financial Assistance to Cultural organizations with National Presence, Financial Assistance for the Preservation & Development of Cultural Heritage of the Himalayas, Financial Assistance for the Preservation & Development of Buddhist/Tibetan Organization and financial assistance for veteran artists to provide  financial  assistance  to cultural organizations/NGOs/individuals.

Family Doctor Project

Paper 2 – Health
Why Should You Know?
Andhra Pradesh State Government is going to implement “Family Doctor Project” on pilot basis.
In details –
  • Andhra Pradesh State Government has decided to implement “Family Doctor Project” on a pilot basis in Padmanabham mandal of Visakhapatnam district.
  • The project is likely to be implemented from 15 August 2022.
  • This project will be taken up with an aim to improve health services among the rural population. As a part of the “Family Doctor Project”, a primary health center (PHC) doctor will be made available to look after the health needs of the people in the ward and the village secretariat.
  • Doctors will provide patient services for the residents of the ward from 9 am to 12.30 pm. Lunch break will be given from 12.30 pm to 1.30 pm. The same doctors will again visit patients who are critically ill and need antenatal and postpartum care from 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm.
  • Prior to the doctor’s visit, ANMs, ASHA workers and Mid-Level Health Providers (MLHPs) will go door-to-door to identify those who require the services of a doctor. The detailed list will be submitted by them to the doctor. After this the doctors of PHC will visit these houses and provide health services.

e-FIR system

Paper 2 – Governance
Why Should You Know?

Recently Gujarat Police launched e-FIR system.

In details –
  • Gujarat government launched e-FIR service for crimes like mobile or two wheeler theft.

Taking a step towards digital governance, “e-FIR system” was launched in the state.

  • The e-governance initiative and the e-FIR system have been launched as a part of the “e-GujCop project”. The move is aimed at resolving the mentioned incidents expeditiously. To lodge complaint or e-FIR in online mode. Gujarat Police will contact the complainant within the first 48 hours of registering the e-FIR and will visit the spot.
  • Police will complete the investigation process within 21 days. After that the status report will be presented in the court. Thus, citizens will be freed from having to go to the police station to register an FIR for common crimes like theft of a mobile or two-wheeler.
  • The e-FIR system is currently providing 16 police related services in online mode.
Significance –
  • Now, citizens will not need to go the police station to register a complaint for a vehicle theft or mobile phone theft.
  • Through this online service, citizens of the state will be able to file complaints online either through the citizen’s portal or a mobile application.

NDDB’s subsidiary for manure

Paper 3 – Agriculture
Why Should You Know?
Union Minister Parshottam Rupala launches NDDB’s subsidiary for manure management.
In details –
  • Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Parshottam Rupala has launched NDDB MRIDA Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary company of National Dairy Development Board to take forward manure management initiatives across the country.
  • It was launched at a function in New Delhi in the presence of  Minister of States for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Dr Sanjeev Kumar Balyan and Dr L Murugan.
  • National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) has established NDDB MRIDA Limited, an Unlisted Public Limited Company under the Companies Act, 2013 on 1st of July this year.
  • NDDB Mrida Ltd will open avenues of additional income to dairy farmers from sale of slurry or dung. it will help in savings to the farmers by virtue of replacement of cooking fuel with biogas.
  • Mr Rupala said that efforts are being made for better utilisation of bovine dung but most are individual initiatives and this new company will provide structured impetus to manure management efforts.
  • It is noteworthy that manure management initiatives have potential to generate biogas equivalent to 50 per cent of India’s present LPG consumption and also produce bio slurry equivalent to 44 per cent of India’s NPK requirement.
  • efficient manure management promotes general well being and cleanliness, contributes to increasing the productive economic life cycle of the milch animals beyond milking thereby helping tackle the problem of stray cattle and lowering of GHG emissions.
  • NDDB has also taken up projects for utilisation of cattle dung to meet the energy needs of dairy plants. foundation stone for first such project was laid by the Prime Minister of India in Varanasi on December 23, 2021. NDDB has also registered a trademark named “SuDhan” to provide common identity to dung based organic fertilisers.
  • On the occasion, Dr Balyan said this is a first-of-its-kind company focussing on efficient utilisation of dung by creating a manure management value chain which will immensely contribute to enhancing the livelihoods of dairy farmers.
  • Shah said NDDB Mrida Ltd will take up setting up of manure value chain, biogas based CNG generation, biogas-based energy generation for dairy plants. He added thst the new company will explore opportunities to efficiently use cattle dung as ingredient for various applications in different industries and as a replacement to traditional wood, clay, paint, etc.
About National Dairy Development Board –
  • The National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) is a statutory body set up by an Act of the Parliament of India.
  • It is under the ownership of Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying of the Government of India.
  • The main office is in Anand, Gujarat with regional offices throughout the country. NDDB’s subsidiaries include Indian Dairy Machinery Company Limited, Mother Dairy and Indian Immunologicals Limited, Hyderabad.
  • The Board was created to finance and support producer-owned and controlled organisations. Its programmes and activities seek to strengthen farmer cooperatives and support national policies that are favourable to the growth of such institutions. Cooperative principles and cooperative strategies are fundamental to the board’s efforts.

Indian Heritage Institute

Paper 1 – Art & Culture
Why Should You Know?
The Indian Heritage Institute will soon be set up as a Deemed University to provide higher education and research in areas related to Indian heritage and its conservation.
In details –
  • Culture and Tourism Minister G. Kishan Reddy informed in the Lok Sabha that Indian Heritage Institute will soon be set up as a Deemed University to provide higher education and research in areas related to Indian heritage and its conservation.
  • He said that the Indian Heritage Institute would be established at Noida, Gautam Budh Nagar in Uttar Pradesh.
  • The institute will offer postgraduate and research degrees in subjects such as art history, conservation, museology, archival studies, archaeology, preventive conservation.
  • Indian Institute of Heritage will be a world-class university that would focus on the conservation and research in India’s rich tangible heritage, while offering research, development and dissemination of knowledge, excellence in the education of its students and activities associated with heritage that contribute to the cultural, scientific and economic life of India.
  • This institute is being set up is deemed to be a university by integrating Institute of Archaeology (Pt Deendayal Upadhyaya Institute of Archaeology), School of Archival Studies under National Archives of India, New Delhi, the National Research Laboratory for Conservation of Cultural Property (NRLC), Lucknow, National Museum Institute of History of Art, Conservation and Museology (NMICHM) and Academic Wing of Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA), New Delhi.
  • Sri Reddy also informed that the Indian Heritage Institute is meant to meet the human resource needs in the entire cultural sector. It is known that the new education policy envisages the inclusion of culture as an integral part of the educational curriculum. Sri Reddy also said that the opening of this institute would encourage the study of museology at a higher level.
what is deemed university?
  • The higher education system in India includes both private and public universities. Public universities are supported by the Government of India and the state governments, while private universities are mostly supported by various bodies and societies.
  • Universities in India are recognized by the University Grants Commission , which draws its power from the University Grants Commission Act, 1956.
  • In addition to this, 15 Professional Councils are established, controlling different aspects of accreditation and coordination.The status of a deemed to be university allows full autonomy in courses, syllabus, admissions and fees.
  • The key difference between a deemed university and a university is that a deemed university is not a full-fledged university but is given the status of autonomy provided to a university by allotting it the title of “deemed” by DHE (Department of Higher Education) under MHRD on the advice of UGC.

Multi-agency group for investigation of foreign asset matters

Paper 3 – Economy
Why Should You Know?
Recently, the Central Government constituted a multi-agency group for speedy and coordinated investigation of foreign assets cases.
In details –
  • The center government has constituted a multi-agency group comprising representatives from various enforcement agencies and organizations to conduct a speedy and coordinated investigation into various categories of foreign assets cases such as the Panama Papers leaks, the Paradise Papers leaks and the recent Pandora Papers leaks.
  • Giving this information to the Lok Sabha, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that there is no official estimate of the amount deposited by Indian citizens and companies in Swiss banks.
  • However, in a written statement, the Finance Minister said that some recent media reports suggest that Indians’ money in Swiss banks has increased in 2021 as compared to 2020. These media reports also state that there is no indication of the amount of black money alleged to be held by Indians in Switzerland in this deposit, she said.
  • The Finance Minister said that in recent times, several concrete and proactive steps have been taken by the Government to levy tax on undeclared foreign assets and income. she said that due to deposits in unreported foreign bank accounts in HSBC cases till May 31 this year, now undisclosed income of more than Rs 8468 crore has been taxed and penalty of more than Rs 1294 crore has been levied.
  • Ms Sitaraman said that till May 31 this year, assessments have been completed in 368 cases under the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Tax Act, 2015, leading to tax demands of more than Rs 14820 crore.
  • He also informed that 648 disclosures relating to undisclosed foreign assets of Rs.4164 crore were made under the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Tax Act, 2015 during the three-month period ending 30 September 2015 of the one-time compliance window. The amount collected as tax and penalty in these cases was about Rs 2476 crore.
What is black money?
  • Black money includes all funds earned through illegal activity and otherwise legal income that is not recorded for tax purposes.
  • Black money proceeds are usually received in cash from underground economic activity and, as such, are not taxed.
  • Recipients of black money must hide it, spend it only in the underground economy, or attempt to give it the appearance of legitimacy through money laundering.

China’s new space laboratory

Paper 3 – Science & Technology
Why Should You Know?
Recently China launched the second module for its space station.
In details –
·In a step forward in China’s ambitious space program, Chinese scientists have successfully launched the second of three space stations.
·Wentian Space Station Module was launched with the help of a Long March 5B rocket from the Wenchang Launch Center on Hainan Island, China.
·15 minutes after the launch, the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA) informed about the success of the launch. Beijing launched the central module of its space station Tiangong in the year 2021. With this move, China has come very close to building its own space station.
·With the completion of the Tiangong Space Station, China will become the only country in the world that currently has its own station.
·Wentian is about 18 meters (60 ft) long and weighs 22 tons (48,500 lb). It will go into space and connect with the module already there. Ventian has complete facilities for three people to rest and work.
·The Wentian space station module is designed to conduct science and biology experiments. It weighs is heavier than other single-module spacecraft in space.
·The Wentian module has an airlocked cabin, which will serve as the main exit-entry point for additional activities after the construction of the space station is completed.
·It will also serve the purpose of short-term living quarters for astronauts on crew rotation on the station.

 World Mangrove Day

Paper 3- Environment
Why Should You Know?
International Mangrove Day is celebrated every year on 26 July for the conservation of the mangrove ecosystem.
In details –
  • International Mangrove Day is celebrated every year on 26 July for the conservation of the mangrove ecosystem.
  • The day was designated by UNESCO in 2015 to raise awareness on the integral role of mangroves as unique, special and vulnerable ecosystems and to promote solutions for their conservation, sustainable management and utility.
  • Mangrove is the only tree that grows in salt water. Mangrove forest is a rare but spectacular and fertile ecosystem, commonly found along tropical and sub-tropical regions having coastlines.
  • Worldwide, mangrove forests account for less than 1 percent of all tropical forests and 0.4 percent of total forest wealth.
  • Although the mangrove forests are exceptional, some are known for featured and even unique functions.
  • Mangroves can offer a vast array of ecosystem goods and services, therefore contributing significantly to food security and the protection of coastal communities.
  • Mangroves can protect coastal areas from storm surges, tsunamis and rising sea levels. They also protect coral reefs, seagrass beds and shipping lanes from siltation and erosion. Thus, mangroves increase immunity against natural hazards.
  • Mangroves can preserve a rich biodiversity, as they provide nursery habitat, spinning grounds and nutrients for a variety of fish, shellfish, migratory birds and insects, as well as countless endangered mammals, reptiles and amphibians.
  • Mangroves are also an important tool in the fight against climate change. They take up to five times more carbon from the atmosphere than forests on land.
  • There is a huge risk of complete destruction of mangroves around the world. Exploitation and pollution are important drivers of mangrove loss. According to the Global Mangrove Alliance, about 67 percent of mangroves are lost or degraded, with an additional 1 percent being lost annually. Overall, mangroves are disappearing 3 to 5 times faster than global forest losses. Thus, it is important to protect or conserve the mangrove ecosystem.
  • It is noteworthy that the first World Mangrove Day was officially held on 26 July 2016.
  • On 6 November 2015, at its 38th session of the General Conference in Paris, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) officially declared 26 July of each year as the International Day of Conservation at the request of Ecuador. Mangrove ecosystem, via resolution 38c/66. This day is also known as World Mangrove Day.
Significance of World Mangrove Day
  • To promote mangrove conservation, restoration and sustainable use on a large scale, several organizations have come together to form the Global Mangrove Alliance (GMA). The alliance aims to support NGOs, governments, industry and local communities to not only stop mangrove degradation, but also to increase mangrove cover by 20 percent by 2030.
  • World Mangrove Day commemorates the important role of mangroves in the conservation of ecosystems. Since 2015, various parties, NGOs and interested stakeholders have thought of conserving the mangrove ecosystem and promoting innovative solutions for them. Unlike other international days, there is no annual theme for each International Day for the Conservation of Mangrove Ecosystems.

New technology for Mumbai’s sewage

Paper 3 – Science & Technology
Why Should You Know?
Recently IIT-Bombay developed a new technology for mumbai’s sewage.
In details –
  • To prevent sludge and sewage from 25 storm water drains between Bandra and Dahisar from flowing into the sea, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has planned in-situ treatment of sewage from the drains.
  • This will be done with the help of Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay’s (IIT-B) N-Treat Technology.
  • Storm water drains or nullahs, as they are popularly called in Mumbai, carry rain water into the sea. However, residential and commercial shanties have mushroomed on their banks and discharge untreated sewage directly into the nullah channels.
  • As a temporary measure to deal with the existing pollution in the nullahs, the civic body will use the N-Treat technology, devised by SINE IIT Bombay Company or the Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, an umbrella organisation at IIT-B.
What is N-Treat technology?
  • N-Treat is a seven-stage process for waste treatment that uses screens, gates, silt traps, curtains of coconut fibres for filtration, and disinfection using sodium hypochlorite.
  • According to the detailed project report for N-Treat, a copy of which is available on the civic body’s website, it is a natural and environment friendly way for sewage treatment.
  • Its set up takes place within the nullah channels, that is through the in-situ or on-site method of treatment, and does not require additional space.
What does the process involve?
  • The first stage involves screening to prevent the entry of floating objects such as plastic cups, paper dishes, polythene bags, sanitary napkins, or wood. IIT-B has proposed to install three coarse screens, the first with 60 mm spacing for removal of large floating matter, the second with 40 mm spacing, and the third with 20 mm spacing.
  • The second stage has proposed construction of a silt trap, which creates an inclination and ‘parking spot’ on the bed of the nullah for sedimentation.
  • The next three stages are installation of ‘bio zones’ in the form of coconut fibre curtains that will act as filters and promote growth of biofilm to help in decomposition of organic matter. A floating wetland with aquatic vegetation planted on floating mats has been proposed.
  • Aside from a floating bed on the surface, IIT-B has proposed suspending floating rafts vertically, called florafts. According to its proposal, “Their hanging roots would provide a large surface area for passive filtration as well as development of microbial consortium. In the floating wetlands, plants acquire nutrition directly from the water column for their growth and development, thus reducing the organic as well as inorganic pollutants.” The final stage for sewage treatment will include disinfection using sodium hypochlorite, to kill the bacteria in the water.
How will it be used by BMC?
  • A senior civic official said: “BMC approached IIT-B to submit a Detailed Project Report for the project. The N-Treat method suggested to the civic body is cost effective, as it does not require manual pumping, and saves electricity, and does not require extensive man-power for maintenance.”
  • The floating matter will be removed daily, silt deposits from the silt traps will be removed once in four months, and plants will be trimmed as required. The floating matter collected every day will be disposed of at the nearest municipal waste collection point daily.
  • This project will deal with the collective water flow of 1,11,150 kilo litres of water per day from the 25 nullahs, having an overall length of 2.9 km. “The project will take place over the next five-and-a-half years, and the first six months will be required for installing the equipment. We will have to remove the equipment during the monsoon months each year, for unhindered flow of water in the nullahs,” the civic official said.

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