Here is the Current Affairs 15th February 2023 covering the following news headlines: IIT Indore, Gross Direct Tax, 2nd Global Hackathon, RBI Cancels Registration, 220 Boeing planes, FIFA World Cup 2026.
· The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Indore Students won AED 1 million by winning the gold medal at the World Government Summit in Dubai.
· Niyati Totala and Neel Kalpeshkumar Parikh of The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Indore, were awarded the prestigious medal by Egyptian President Abel Fattah Al-Sisi.
· The IIT students were the creators of the ‘Blockbill’ app. Blockbill is a blockchain-based receipt generation app that generates digital receipts for all of its users’ transactions.
· This app solves multiple problems, which aids the transition away from the production of thermal papers for printing receipts.
· The “M-Gov Award” and the “GovTech Award” are annual awards organized by the UAE government as part of the World Government Summit.
· Gross direct tax collections grew 24 per cent to Rs 15.67 trillion so far this fiscal, the finance ministry said. After adjusting for refunds, the net direct tax collection stood at Rs 12.98 trillion, a growth of 18.40 per cent.
· The net collections are about 79 per cent of Revised Estimates (RE) of direct tax collection for current fiscal, the CBDT said. The revised estimates for the current fiscal pegged direct tax revenues at Rs 16.50 lakh crore, higher than the budget estimates of Rs 14.20 trillion.
· The provisional figures of direct tax collections up to 10th February, 2023 continue to register steady growth. Direct tax collections up to 10th February, 2023 show that gross collections are at Rs 15.67 trillion which is 24.09 per cent higher than the gross collections for the corresponding period of last year.
· The Reserve Bank announced its second global hackathon – ‘HARBINGER 2023 – Innovation for Transformation’ with the theme ‘Inclusive Digital Services’.
· Registration for the hackathon starts from February 22, 2023. It had received 363 proposals submitted by teams from within India and from 22 other countries including the US, UK, Sweden, Singapore, Philippines, and Israel.
· Fintechs have been invited to develop solutions that have the potential to make digital financial services accessible to the differently-abled, facilitate efficient compliance, extend the reach of Central Bank Digital Currencies and enhance the scalability of blockchains.
· “Being part of HARBINGER 2023 gives an opportunity to the participants to get mentored by industry experts and exhibit their innovative solutions before an eminent jury and win exciting prizes in each category,” the RBI said.
· The Reserve Bank of India said it has cancelled the registration of Pune-based Kudos Finance and Investments and Mumbai-based Credit Gate for regulatory lapses in lending practices.
· With cancelled Certificate of Registration(CoR), the two NBFCs should not transact the business of a non-banking financial institution, the RBI said in a statement.
· The Certificate of Registration(CoR) of the two NBFCs have been cancelled on account of violation of RBI Guidelines on Outsourcing and Fair Practices Code in their digital lending operations undertaken through third party apps, which was considered detrimental to public interest,” it said.
· According to the statement, the entities were also not complying with the extant regulations pertaining to charging of excessive interest and had resorted to undue harassment of customers for loan recovery purposes.
· United States President Joe Biden hailed Air India’s decision to purchase over 220 aircraft from Boeing and called it a “historic agreement between Tata-owned airlines and Boeing.
· This purchase will support over one million American jobs across 44 states, and many will not require a four-year college degree. This announcement also reflects the strength of US-India economic partnership,” Joe Biden said in an official statement.
· Air India will purchase as many as 220 planes from Boeing for USD 34 billion, with an option to buy 70 more aircraft that could take the total transaction value to USD 45.9 billion.
· The Air India order is Boeing’s third biggest sale ever in dollar value and second in terms of number of planes.
· NewSpace Research, a Bengaluru-based start-up has delivered SWARM drones to Indian Army, which makes the Army the first major armed force in the world to operationalise these high-density SWARM drones.
· This delivery may possibly be the world’s first operational high density swarming UAS (Unmanned Aerial System) induction for military applications, especially given that most swarm drone research is yet to be operationalised across the world.
· The swarm of 100 drones is capable of hitting targets at least 50 kms away into enemy territory.
· The swarming systems were ordered under the emergency procurement (EP) and show that India has taken a global lead with induction of a cutting edge ‘Made in India’ technology which is at par, if not ahead, of its peers across the world.
· Union Home Minister Amit Shah has presented the President’s Colour to Haryana Police in recognition of its exceptional service. He Shah presented the award on behalf of President Dedroupadi Murmu in a ceremony at the Haryana Police Academy in Karnal’s Madhuban.
· In his remarks at the event, Shah also paid tribute to those martyred in the 2019 Pulwama attack. He added that the names of the 40 Central Reserve Police Force personnel who died would be written in “golden letters” in India’s defence history.
· Haryana Police is now among one of the 10 States in the country to receive the President’s insignia. Earlier, this prestigious honour has been received by the police of Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, and Assam.
· International Childhood Cancer Day (ICCD) is observed on February 15 every year. The day was observed by the Childhood Cancer International, an umbrella organisation of various child cancer support groups created by parents.
· The day is dedicated to raising awareness and showing support for children and adolescents suffering from cancer. Despite all the advancements in science, childhood cancer remains the leading cause of death by disease among children.
· The three-year campaign for International Childhood Cancer Day began in 2021 and will conclude in 2023. The theme for the three-year campaign is ‘Better Survival’.
· Among the big States in the country, Chhattisgarh and Bihar allocated the most proportion of their budget towards education in FY23. While Chhattisgarh allocated 18.82 per cent of the State’s estimated net budget expenditure to education, Bihar allocated 18.3 per cent.
· The States/UTs that have spent a higher portion of their budget expenditure on education are Delhi, Assam, and Himachal Pradesh, which allocated 22 per cent, 20 per cent and 19 per cent, respectively, of their budgets on education this fiscal year.
· While Chhattisgarh and Bihar are spending more on education, they do not fare too well on literacy. The literacy rate in Chattisgarh is 77.9 per cent, while the rate for Bihar is 70.9 per cent, one of the lowest in the country, according to the National Sample Survey 2018.
· Namami Gange Programme was launched from June 2014 till 31st March 2021 to rejuvenate River Ganga and its tributaries with a budget of Rs.20,000 crore.
· The Government of India has approved Namami Gange Mission-II with a budgetary outlay of Rs.22,500 crore till 2026 including projects for existing liabilities (Rs.11,225 Cr) and new projects/interventions (Rs.11,275 crore).
· A total of Rs.14,084.72 crore has been released by the Government of India to the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), from Financial Year 2014-15 till 31st January 2023, out of which Rs.13,607.18 crore have been released by NMCG to State Governments, State Missions for Clean Ganga and other agencies for implementation of projects related to Ganga rejuvenation.
· Sania Mirza has been roped in as mentor of Royal Challengers Bangalore for the inaugural Women’s Premier League (WPL), to be played in Mumbai from March 4 to 26.
· The franchise also announced the signing of Australian Ben Sawyer as head coach. Sawyer is the head coach of New Zealand Women and was part of the Women’s World Cup-winning side with Australia last year as the assistant coach.
· Royal Challengers put together a star-studded line-up at the inaugural auction, headlined by Smriti Mandhana, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Sophie Devine, Dane van Niekerk and Richa Ghosh. The team will open its WPL campaign on March 5, the second day of the tournament, against Delhi Capitals at Brabourne Stadium.
· The U.S. men’s national team, along with Mexico and Canada, will automatically qualify for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.
· The three countries won the right to host the World Cup in a united North American bid. FIFA historically has given host nations the right to play in the World Cup without going through the usual qualification tournaments, though this is the first time FIFA had to set aside three host bids.
· The tournament is set to expand from 32 teams to 48 in 2026. Another three berths will be awarded to CONCACAF nations via qualifying.
· While the U.S. and Mexico tend to qualify for most World Cups, it was good news for Canada, whose men’s national team broke a 36-year drought between World Cup appearances when it qualified for Qatar in 2022. Canada lost all three of its group-stage matches.
· The FIFA Council also determined its timetable for bidding for the right to host the 2030 World Cup. That meeting will be separate from FIFA’s meeting to select a host for the 2027 Women’s World Cup, which will be held first, earlier in 2024.
· Eminent Indian painter and late filmmaker Guru Dutt’s sister Lalitha Lajmi passed away at the age of 90. She was born to a poet father and a poly-linguistic writer mother in Kolkata in 1932.
· She was a self-taught artist with a keen interest in classical dance. Over the decades, Lajmi has held several exhibitions at international art galleries in Paris, London and Holland.
· She also featured in Aamir Khan’s film Taare Zameen Par, which was released in 2007. Lajmi’s daughter, Kalpana Lajmi was also a well-known Indian filmmaker who had made award-winning films like Rudali and Daman. Kalpana Lajmi passed away in 2018 due to multiple illnesses. She is survived by her son Devdas.
· Veteran theatre and film actor Javed Khan Amrohi, best known for his roles in the popular DD serial Nukkad and films such as Lagaan and Chak De! India, passed away at the age of 70s.
· After graduating from the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Amrohi appeared in smaller yet pivotal roles in over 150 films and close to a dozen TV shows.
· He is best known for playing the barber Karim in the late 1980s TV show Nukkad; Anand Akela, one of the suitors of Raveena Tandon’s character in Andaz Apna Apna; the cricket commentator in Lagaan, and a support staff of the Indian Women’s Hockey team in Chak De! India.
· The Government of India has launched a mobile app “KhananPrahari” and a web app Coal Mine Surveillance and Management System (CMSMS) for reporting unauthorized coal mining activities so that monitoring and taking suitable action on it can be done by the concerned Law & Order enforcing authority.
· The CMSMS has been developed to curb illegal mining and take transparent action as an e-Governance initiative of GoI on the use of Space Technology.
· The objective of the development and launching of the CMSMS application was to detect citizens’ participation against illegal mining by receipt of citizen complaints through a mobile app – KhananPrahari.
· The app will help to monitor and take action on any kind of illegal coal mining activity being carried out within the leasehold boundaries of any Coal Mining Project in the Coalfield Areas.
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