Ojaank IAS Academy




26 September 2022 – Current Affairs

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Rosh Hashanah

Paper 1 – Art & Culture
Why Should You Know?
This year, the Jewish New Year “Rosh Hashnah” is being organized from September 25 to September 27.
In details –
  • , which means the head of the year or the first of the year. The Jewish New Year is celebrated in the month of September or October of the Gregorian calendar.
  • The term Rosh Hashanah is believed to have been first used in the 6th century BC.  This festival is celebrated by following various traditions, customs, food preparation, etc.
  • Different types of dishes are made on this day. On this occasion, people meet their friends and relatives and congratulate them.
  • On this occasion,  men call each other Leshana tovah tikatev v’tichatem, while women say Leshana tovah takitevi vichitami (Leshana tovah tikatevee v’tichatemee).
What is Rosh Hashanah?
  • Rosh Hashnah is the Jewish New Year that falls on the first day of the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar, Tishrei, celebrated following its different customs and traditions.
  • For Rosh Hashanah, people of this community can also wish others a happy new year by saying Shana Towa, which means good year in Hebrew. Sometimes people say shanah tovah u’metukah, which literally means a good and lovely new year.
Significance and traditions –
  • , which is an instrument made of Ram’s horn and is considered god’s command to fly it. On the evening of Rosh Hashanah, women and girls light candles and seek blessings.
  • The next night they use the flame of the existing fire to light their candles.  When the candles are lit, the people of this community pray to Sheikhchianu for blessings.
  • The traditional feast to celebrate this festival includes fish, pomegranate, honey, other fruits. The first day reads about the birth of Isaac and  the exile of Hagar and Ishmael. Followed by a word from Samuel the Prophet.

Bathukamma  Festival

Paper 1 – Art & Culture
Why Should You Know?
This year Bathukamma is being celebrated from 25 September to 3 October.
In details
  • Bathukamma is a flowerfestival celebrated predominantly in Telangana and some parts of Andhra Pradesh.
  • Bathukamma means ‘come back to life mother’ and it is an asking for Goddess Sati to return. Legend has it that Sati returned as Goddess Parvati and therefore the festival is also dedicated to Goddess Parvati.
  • Every year this festival is celebrated as per Sathavahana calendar for nine days starting Pitru Amavasya, usually in September–October of Gregorian calendar.
  • It starts on the day of Mahalaya Amavasya and the 9-day festivities will culminate on “Saddula Bathukamma” or “Pedda Bathukamma” festival, Bathukamma is followed by Boddemma, which is a 7-day festival.
  • Boddemma festival that marks the ending of Varsha Ruthu whereas Bathukamma festival indicates the beginning of Sarad or Sharath Ruthu.
  • Bathukamma represents cultural spirit of Telangana.Bathukamma is a beautiful flower stack, arranged with different unique seasonal flowers most of them with medicinal values, in seven concentric layers in the shape of temple gopuram.
  • In Telugu, ‘Bathukamma’ means ‘Mother Goddess come Alive’.
  • Historically, bathukamma meant “festival of life” and was celebrating crop harvest.
How It is Celebrated?
  • It is the festival for feminine felicitation. On this special occasion women dress up in the traditional sari combining it with jewels and other accessories.
  • Teenage Girls wear Langa-Oni/Half-Sarees/Lehenga Choli combining it with jewels in order to bring out the traditional grace of the attire.
  • Men in the house gather flowers Bathukamma Flowers from the wild plains like Celosia, Senna, Marigold, Chrysanthemum, Indian Lotus, Cucurbita leaves & flowers, Cucumis Sativus leaves & flowers, Memecylon edule, Tridax procumbens, Trachyspermum ammi, Katla, Teku Flowers, etc., which bloom in this season in various vibrant colors all across the uncultivated and barren plains of the region.
  • Preparing a Bathukamma is a folk art. Women start preparing Bathukamma from the afternoon.
  • They cut the flowers leaving the little length base, some dip Gunugu (Celosia) flowers in various vibrant colours, some scented and arrange them on a wide plate called Thambalam.
  • Songs are sung to invoke the blessings of various deities.
  • Each day has a name mainly signifying the type of “naivedyam” (food offering) offered. Most of the naivedyam offered are very simple to prepare, and usually young children or young girls are mainly involved in the preparation of the offerings for the first eight days of the festival.
  • The last day, called saddula Bathukamma is when all the women take part in the preparation.
  • This festival is celebrated for nine days and concludes on Durgastami. The last day of the festival is called Saddula Bathukamma.
  • On this final day immersion of Bathukamma (Bathukamma Visarjan) in water bodies is celebrated with utmost devotion and enthusiasm with rhythmic drum beats throughout Telangana.

‘Swachh Toycathon’

Paper 3 – Economy
Why Should You Know?
Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs to launch a unique competition for making toys from ‘Waste’ ‘Swachh Toycathon’.
In details –
  • National Action Plan for Toys (NAPT) 2020 was introduced to promote the Indian toy industry including traditional handicrafts and handmade toys with the objective of establishing India as a global Toy hub.
  • Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) along with 14 ministries of Central Government is currently implementing various aspects of the NAPT.
  • Besides being the second largest populated country in the world, India also has a growing young population with half of the total population under 25 years of age.
  • The demand for toys is also increasing due to strong economic growth, rising disposable incomes, and several innovations for the junior population.
  • With ever-changing consumption patterns and rapid rise of e-commerce, the per capita waste generation has steadily increased over the last decade, making waste management in cities a challenge for Urban Local Bodies.
  • The second phase of Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM 2.0) was launched on 1st October 2021 by the Hon’ble Prime Minister with a vision of ‘Garbage Free’ cities by 2026.
About the Competition
  • The growing demand for toys on one hand and impacts of solid waste on the other, Swachh Toycathon is a convergence between the NAPT and SBM 2.0 that seeks to explore solutions for use of waste in creation or manufacturing of toys.
  • The competition will be open to individuals and groups to bring forth innovation in toy designs using dry waste.
  • It will focus on efficient designs that can be replicated at a larger scale, toys that comply with minimum safety standards, as well as aesthetics of the toys. Center for Creative Learning, IIT Gandhinagar is the knowledge partner for the initiative.
  • This competition is being launched under the ‘Swachh Amrit Mahotsav’, a fortnight of activities to galvanize action around Swachhata from 17th Sept. 2022, SevaDiwas, till 2nd Oct. 2022, SwachhataDiwas.
  • The competition will be hosted on MyGov’sInnovate India portal.
  • It will be launched by Secretary, Housing and Urban Affairs in a virtual event at 10:30 am on 26th September 2022.

National Service Scheme Awards

Paper 1 – Social Issues
Why Should You Know?
President Murmu presents National Service Scheme Awards for the year 2020-21.
In details
  • President Droupadi Murmu conferred the National Service Scheme NSS Awards for the year 2020-21 on September 24, at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
  • A total of forty-two awards were given. Two universities, ten NSS units, their programme officers, and 30 NSS volunteers received the awards.
  • Union minister of youth affairs and sports Anurag Singh Thakur, union minister of state for youth affairs and sports Nisith Pramanik, and youth affairs secretary Sanjay Kumar were also present on this occasion.
  • Notebly The Department of Youth Affairs of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports confers every year the National Service Scheme Award.
  • Awards are conferred to recognise and reward outstanding contributions towards voluntary community service with a view to further promoting NSS in the country.
  • At present, NSS has about 40 lakh volunteers on its rolls spread over the country.
What is NSS?
  • The National Service Scheme (NSS) is an Indian government sector public service program conducted by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports of the Government of India. Popularly known as NSS, the scheme was launched in Gandhiji’s Centenary year in 1969. Aimed at developing student’s personality through community service, NSS is a voluntary association of young people in Colleges, Universities and at +2 level working for a campus-community (esp. Villages) linkage.
  • The programme aims to instilling the idea of social welfare in students, and to provide service to society without bias.
  • NSS volunteers work to ensure that everyone who is needy gets help to enhance their standard of living and lead a life of dignity.
  • In doing so, volunteers learn from people in villages how to lead a good life despite a scarcity of resources. it also provides help in natural and man-made disasters by providing food, clothing and first aid to the disaster’s victims.

Session of Governing Body of the ITPGRFA

Paper 3- Agriculture
Why Should You Know?
Recently Ninth Session of Governing Body of the ITPGRFA concluded.
In details
  • The Ninth Session of the Governing Body (GB9) of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) concluded in New Delhi on September 24.
  • The six-day GB9 session of ITPGRFA was inaugurated by the Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar in New Delhi on September 19, 2022.
  • More than 400 eminent scientists and resource persons from 150 member-countries participated in the deliberation during the 9th session of GB.
Major outcomes of session
India’s contribution
  • In a historical first, Federation of Seed Industry of India (FSII) contributed Rs 20 lakhs (~USD 25,000) to the Benefit-Sharing Fund (BSF) as the first collective contribution from Indian seed sector, during the GB-9 meetings. 
  • The BSF is the funding mechanism of the Treaty used for support of capacity building, Conservation and sustainable use projects among the Contracting Parties of the Treaty.
India appointed as Co-Chair
  • Dr Sunil Archak, ICAR-National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources, India, was appointed as Co-Chair, along with Dr Michael Ryan, Department of Agriculture, Canberra, Australia, on the Working Group on ‘Enhancement of the Multilateral System (MLS)’.
  • A fully functional user-friendly and simple MLS is crucial for the success of the ITPGFRA. Elements of enhancement would include measures for increased benefit sharing mechanism, expansion of crops and accessions available through the MLS, while also taking into cognisance changes in scientific, technical and policy environment globally.
Implementation of Farmers Rights
  • Based on meetings in the last five years of Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on Farmers’ Rights (FRs), Co-Chaired by Dr R.C. Agrawal (India) and Ms Svanhild Isabelle Batta Torheim (Norway), and the working group/plenary deliberations during the GB9 meeting, a resolution on implementation of Farmers Rights under Article 9 was finally agreed upon ensuring equilibrium and justice.
  • The Co-chairs acknowledged the contributions of the experts, stakeholders and delegates of the GB9 to arrive at the resolution which was difficult, but achieved, nonetheless. The GB called upon the Contracting Parties to update inventory of national measures, best practices and lessons learnt for national implementation of Farmers’ Rights under the Treaty, as per the national legislation.
  • Further, the Treaty Secretariat was requested to publish the options for realization of Farmers’ Rights, including Option Category 10 (legal measures for the implementation of the Farmers’ Rights), which was noted as Co-Chairs proposal, based on India’s experience under the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights (PPV&FR) Act, 2001 where FRs are well balanced with Plant Breeders Rights were included in the resolution as the Co-Chairs.
  • The GB9 also called upon the Treaty Secretariat to include in its multi-year programme of work (MYPOW) for possible impact of digital sequence information (DSI) on Farmers’ Rights.
  • The GB9 welcomed the offer of Government of India to host a global symposium on Farmers’ Rights to share experiences and discuss future work on Farmers’ Rights and also for the assessment of the Implementation of the Farmers’ Rights as per the Treaty Article 9 in various countries which are Contracting Parties.
Genebank funding
  • In a major breakthrough in the GB9 of ITPGRFA, Contracting Parties acknowledged the intervention made by India, and supported by many African nations, regarding effect due to institutional reform within the CGAIR system on funding of genebanks globally, and CIFOR-ICRAF and ICRISAT in particular.
  • GB emphasised the need to ensure the long-term safety of the Article 15 IARC genebanks and the distribution of germplasm held ‘in trust’ by the CGIAR centres and other Article 15 genebanks, and for long-term solutions by strengthening the Treaty and the Crop Trust mechanism.

‘SymphoNE’ Conference

Paper 3- Tourism
Why Should You Know?
Recently Union Minister Shri G. Kishan Reddy launchea a Virtual Conference ‘SymphoNE’ to boost Tourism Sector in North East India.
In details
  • SymphoNE is the start of a series of dialogues on North Eastern Region’s Development  Conference comprised of a broad range of Policy Thinkers, Stakeholders & Influencers with the aim to boost Tourism Sector in North Eastern Region.
  • North East India is blessed with amazing food, culture, stunning landscapes, heritage and architecture and ranks among the most beautiful places on the earth.  But, there are grand opportunities that can be filled to boost Tourism Sector in the Region.
  • With this vision in hand, Minister for DoNER, Tourism & Culture Shri G. Kishan Reddy launched the two-day virtual conference ‘SymphoNE’ on September 24 in the presence of Secretary, MDoNER, Shri Lok Ranjan, NEC, Shri Lok Ranjan Senior Officers of the Ministry & 8 States, Senior Officers from Tourism Boards, Important Stakeholders, Tourist Operators And Digital Influencers.
  • The Virtual Conference ‘SymphoNE’ being organized on 24th & 27th September 2022 by Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region on the occasion of World Tourism Day.
  • This two day conference will aim to create a roadmap to showcase the unexplored beauty of North East India & boost the tourism Sector in North Eastern Region.
  • It would ideate, discuss & formulate the ideas & suggestions by Thought Leaders, Policy Thinkers, Social Media Influencers, Travel & Tour Operators And The Senior Officials of Ministry of DoNER and State Departments.
  • Session of ‘SymphoNE’ comprised the presence of several eminent personalities like Thought Leaders, Policy Thinkers, State Tourism  Boards, Social Media Influencers etc, Travel & Tour Operators etc. The sessions included Senior Tourism Officials of State Governments and the local Tour operators of the respective states.
  • SymphoNE aims to develop one-stop solution to eliminate all obstacles that are being faced by the tourists, and the tour operators while carrying out the operations for the visitors while solving logistics & infrastructural facilities, lack of awareness about the locations among the tourist and to spread necessary information among the people, and marketing/promotional activities.
  • The concluding session of ‘SymphoNE’ will be held on 27th September, 2022 and will be addressed by  MoS, MDoNER, Shri B.L. Verma.


Swachh Vayu Sarvekshan

Paper 3 – Environment
Why Should You Know?
Under the guidance of the Minister for Environment, Forest and climate Change, the Ministry is going to launch Swachh Vayu Sarvekshan
In details
  • A two day National Conference of Ministers of Environment, Forest and Climate Change was held in Ekta Nagar, Gujarat on 23-24th September, 2022. The conference was inaugurated by the Prime Minister virtually.
  • During  a  parallel session on Control and Prevention of Pollution, the States were informed regarding guidelines  on ‘Swachh Vayu Sarvekshan- Ranking of Cities’ released under National Clean Air Programme (NCAP).
  • Under the guidance of the Minister for Environment, Forest and climate Change, the Ministry is going to launch Swachh Vayu Sarvekshan  that promotes ranking of 131 cities in the country for implementing City Action Plans prepared as part of National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) for reducing air pollution upto 40% by 2025-26.
  • 131 cities are categorized into three groups based on population. 47 cities are in the first group having population more than 10 lakh.
  • 44 cities are in the second group having population between 3 to 10 lakh. Third group consists of 40 cities having population less than 3 lakh.
  • Cities are required to do the self-assessment as per the framework provided on PRANA online portal. This assessment is carried out annually. Cities have to report implementation of activities and measures taken in respect of solid waste management, road dust management, management of construction and demolition waste, control of vehicular emissions and industrial pollution.
Cash award
  • It was informed that based on the self-assessment and third party assessment, 3 best performing cities in each group will be given cash award in the spirit of competitive federalism.
  • This promotes constructive competition in the spirit of competitive federalism to take measures to improve air quality.
  • This Survekshan provides a tool to cities to plan their actions in order to improve the air quality. It is not based on the measurement of the air quality parameters to rank the cities.
  • It is based on the actions taken by the cities to improve the air quality in different domains. The actions taken by the cities would result in the improvement of air quality.
  • It thus, provides a planning implementation tool to improve the air quality and the assessment of the cities regarding how better they have aligned their actions to improve the air quality.
  • The Ministers of Environment, Forest and Climate Change from across the country participated in the  National conference organised by Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. State Forest and Environment Ministers, the concerned State Secretaries as well as Chairmen of State PCBs / PCCs along with PCCFs also participated in the two-day National Conference along with senior officials of the Ministry.

The Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts

Paper 3 – Economy
Why Should You Know?
The Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH) in association with Indian mission in the Guatemala (Latin America) is organizing a Made in India – Trade Show Exhibition
In details
  • The Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH) in association with Indian mission in the Guatemala (Latin America) is organizing a Made in India – Trade Show Exhibition on Indian arts & crafts and other products of Indian Handicrafts Manufacturers & Exporters from 22 – 24 September, 2022 in Guatemala City, Guatemala. 
  • Ten National master craft persons and exporters from all parts of India are displaying the wide range of variety of handcrafted products like home décor, home furnishing, carpets, furniture, lamps, fashion jewellery & accessories, incense, aroma and wellness products.
  • EPCH being a nodal agency, promoting exports of handicrafts from the Country to various destinations of the world and projecting India’s image abroad as a reliable supplier of high quality handicrafts goods & services.
  • The Handicrafts exports during the year 2021-22 was Rs. 33253.00 Crores (US $ 4459.76 Million) registering a growth of 29.49% in rupee term & 28.90% in dollar terms over previous year. However, exports of Handicrafts to Latin America is Rs. 682 crores (USD 92 million) in year 2021-22.
About EPCH
  • Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH) was established under Companies Act in the year 1986-87 and is a non-profit organisation, with an object to promote, support, protect, maintain and increase the export of handicrafts.
  • It is an apex body of handicrafts exporters for promotion of exports of Handicrafts from country and projected India’s image abroad as a reliable supplier of high quality of handicrafts goods & services and ensured various meausres keeping in view of of observance of international standards and specification.
  • The Council has created necessary infrastructure as well as marketing and information facilities, which are availed both by the members exporters and importers.
  • The Council is engaged in promotion of handicrafts from India and project India’s image abroad as a reliable supplier of high quality handicrafts.
  • The Council is run and managed by team of professionals headed by Executive Director. The Committee of Administration consists of eminent exporters, professionals.
  • The Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts has a rarest distinction of being considered as MODEL COUNCIL that is self-sustaining and where all the promotional activities are self-financed.
  • Council’s continued pursuit of excellence and the objective of achieving the hallmark of quality assurance by extending excellent services to all the members and stake holders has led the Council to become an ISO 9001 : 2015 certified organization.

Typhoon Noru

Paper 1 – Geography
Why Should You Know?
High alert declared in Philippines due to Hurricane Noru.
In details –
  • In Philippines, thousands of people have been evacuated and government offices have been closed as super typhoon Noru lashes the country’s eastern islands.
  • Typhoon Noru has caused gusts of up to 240 Kilometer per hour on the main island Luzon, where more than half of the country’s 110 million population live. Forecasters say the storm experienced an explosive intensification as it made landfall west of Luzon.
  • The storm could cause landslides, flash flooding, and dangerous storm surges.
  • More than 8,400 people have already been evacuated from its path, and officials have issued warnings of serious flooding in areas of the capital, Manila.
  • National police chief Gen Rodolfo Azurin urged people to comply with evacuation orders.
  • The storm’s intensity increased by 90 Kilometer per hour in 24 hours which according to the forecasters is unprecedented. The Philippines weather service has issued a wind signal five for Luzon, the highest warning level which marks Noru as a super-typhoon.
  • The severity of the storm can be detected from the fact that fishermen in Quezon Province, east of Manila, have been prevented from heading to sea, and there were reports of some areas being without power. Flights and ferry services have been canceled.
About Typhoon Noru
  • Typhoon Noru, known in the Philippines as Super Typhoon Karding, is a strong tropical cyclone that made a very powerful landfall over Central Luzon.
  • According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, on September 21, a disturbance developed into a tropical depression east of the Philippines. The one who went ahead took the form of storm Nauru
  • The sixteenth named storm and eighth typhoon of the 2022 Pacific typhoon season, Noru originated from a disturbance initially designated by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) as Invest 95W in the Pacific Ocean, near the eastern border of PAGASA’s Philippine Area of Responsibility.

Real Time Train Information System (RTIS)

Paper 3 – Science & Tech
Why Should You Know?
Indian Railways has created a Real-time Train Information System (RTIS) with the help of ISRO.
In details
  • Indian Railways has created a Real-time Train Information System (RTIS) with the help of ISRO, with the help of which it will now be easier to track trains in real time.
  • Indian Railways has introduced this real-time information system to track train movement timings.
  • The Real Time Train Information System (RTIS), developed in collaboration with ISRO, is being installed on locomotives for automatic timing of train movement at stations.
  • This will make it easier to track these trains. Indian Railways has installed RTIS devices on 2,700 locomotives in 21 electric loco sheds.
  • The Railway Ministry said that RTIS will update the location in a period of 30 seconds. Also, RTIS can more closely track the location and speed of the locomotive/train without any human intervention.
  • In the second phase, 6,000 more locomotives will be covered in 50 loco sheds using ISRO’s SATCOM hub. At present, the GPS feed from about 6,500 locomotives (RTIS and REMMLOT) is being fed directly to the Control Office Application (COA).
  • This has made possible automatic charting of trains and real-time information to passengers through COA and NTES integration.

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