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Current Affairs

 


18th May 2023          



NATIONAL AFFAIRS


1) MoC Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw launches Sanchar Saathi Portal to Prevent Frauds by Misusing Mobile Phones

i.On May 16, 2023, Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, Ministry of Communications (MoC) launched the Sanchar Saathi portal ‘https://sancharsaathi.gov.in’ to prevent frauds by misusing mobile phones.
ii.Developed by Department of Telecommunications (DoT), MoC, it is a citizen centric to empower mobile subscribers, strengthen their security and increase awareness about citizen centric initiatives of the Government.
iii.Using this portal, a total of 40.87 Lakh suspected connections were detected. Of these, 36.61 Lakh have been disconnected after verification, while the rest are being processed.
About Ministry of Communication(MoC):
Union Minister– Ashwini Vaishnaw(Rajya Sabha- Odisha)
Minister of State (MoS)– Devusinh Chauhan(Constituency- Kheda, Gujarat)

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2) India & Bangladesh launched a ‘50 start-ups exchange programme’

India and Bangladesh launched a ‘50 start-ups exchange programme’, under which  50 Start-ups from Bangladesh and 50 Start-ups from India were planned to exchange visits to each other’s countries for exploring partnerships, expanding business relations, sharing experience and knowledge and expanding youth and entrepreneurial cooperation.

·       Under the programme, first group of 10 start-up companies belong to sectors such as e-commerce, health, transport and logistics, energy, education and skill development from Bangladesh have made a 5 day visit to India from May 8 to 12, 2023.

·       The framework of the programme was decided by the Prime Ministers(PM) of the two countries (i.e. PM of India Narendra Modi and PM of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina) during their recent bilateral summits.

Key Events of Exchange Programme:
i.The start-ups of Bangladesh were introduced to India’s ‘Start-up India’ initiative.
ii.They participated in interactive sessions focused on establishing a Start-up and business model creation process, role of incubator, marketing of projects and services, cyber security and artificial intelligence including data protection, start-up evaluation and methods to secure funding.
iii.The High Commission of India in Bangladesh organised an interactive session in Dhaka on May 14, 2023 with the group of 10-startups who visited India.
iv.It has the potential of augmenting cooperation in new and emerging areas, cutting edge technology, entrepreneurship and innovation,
Additional info:
The programme will enable both nations’ start-up communities to enhance cooperation as the two countries explored ways to further enhance ease of doing business, including trade settlement in local currencies and collaboration in digital payment platforms.
50 Start-ups exchange programme has the potential of augmenting cooperation in new and emerging areas, cutting edge technology, entrepreneurship and innovation, said an official press release.

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3) MCA launched C-PACE to Simplify Removal of company names from Register

On May 13 2023, The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) established the Centre for Processing Accelerated Corporate Exit (C-PACE) to centralise the process of striking off companies from the MCA Register.

·       On May 1 2023, the office of C-PACE was inaugurated by RK Dalmia, Director of Inspection & Investigation at MCA.

·       Harihara Sahoo, Indian Corporate Law Services (ICLS), serves as the first Registrar of C-PACE.

·       The C-PACE office will work under the supervision/administration of Director General of Corporate Affairs (DGCoA) in New Delhi, Delhi.

Objective:
i. The establishment of the centralised institution C-PACE aims to facilitate ease of doing business and simplify the exit process for companies.
ii. It also aims to provide a hassle-free, timely and process-bound experience for companies seeking to strike off their names from the MCA Register.
Benefits:
i. The Centralised process of striking off companies helps maintain a clean registry.
ii. Provides hassle-free filing and process-bound striking off for stakeholders.
iii. Ensures timely and efficient disposal of applications.
iv. Better availability of meaningful data to stakeholders.
About C-PACE:
i. C-PACE was established under sub-section (1) of section 396, will be operational through the Registrar of Companies (RoC) for the purposes of exercising functional jurisdiction of processing and disposal of applications, and is located at the Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs (IICA) in Gurgaon, Haryana.
ii. From May 1 2023, The Ministry of Corporate Affairs amended the Companies Rules, for the Removal of Names of the Companies from the RoC, under Section 248 of the Companies Act would be made to the Registrar, C-PACE, which came into effect from the notification dated 17th April 2023.
It is expected that the process of voluntary winding up of companies would now be completed in six months as against the earlier timeline of two years.

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4) Bhopal becomes first Indian city to measure UNs SDGs process

Bhopal, Capital of Madhya Pradesh has become the first city in India, joining the growing global movement on the localisation of the United Nations (UN)-mandated sustainable development goals (SDG).

·       On May 12 2023, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh launched An Agenda for Action: Sustainable Urban Transformation.

·       Bhopal will now have voluntary Local Reviews (VLR) to demonstrate the local government’s (Bhopal Municipal Corporation) capacity and commitment towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Note: The SDGs localisation is translating the Agenda 2030, into local actions and impacts as part of the SDGs localisation process, which helps promote the goals achievement on a global scale.
Key People involved:
Bhupendra Singh, Minister for Urban Development (Madhya Pradesh); Vishvas Kailash Sarang, Minister of Medical Education (Madhya Pradesh); Malti Rai, Mayor of Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.
Bhopal’s VLR:
i. Bhopal’s VLR is the result of a collaboration between the Bhopal Municipal Corporation, UN-Habitat, and a collective of over 23 local stakeholders to work together to create a VLR to measurably demonstrate the city’s aspirations for a sustainable and inclusive urban transformation.
ii. It incorporated a mix of quantitative and qualitative approaches to the review of SDGs, with qualitative mapping of 56 developmental projects.
iii. The UN adopted Agenda 2030, which includes 17 SDGs and 169 targets, was endorsed by all 193 UN members earlier in 2015 as a strategy for prosperity of the planet.
iv. The UN’s High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) receives reports from the member states on their progress towards achieving the goals through Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs).
v. Cities and regions have a pivotal role to play in the achievement of Agenda 2030. A Voluntary Local Review (VLR) thus enables cities and regions to localise the SDGs and report their progress.
Note: According to the UN, at least 60% of the 169 targets could not possibly be achieved.
vi. Unlike VNRs, the local reviews do not directly have a legal basis in the 2030 Agenda or other international agreements, even though the 2030 Agenda emphasises how crucial it is for the governments to collaborate closely with the regional and local authorities on its implementation.
vii. VLRs have emerged as a powerful tool that forefront local action.
Note: New York City of the United States became the first city to submit its VLR to the UN’s HLPF in 2018. By 2021, some 33 countries had made 114 VLRs publicly available or similar review documents.

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5) Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts celebrates Rabindra Jayanti; ‘Vigyan Vaibhav’ portal Launched

On 12th May 2023, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA) in collaboration with Shree Guru Gobind Singh Tricentenary University and Sanrachna Foundation held Rabindra Jayanti Celebrations at Samvet Auditorium, IGNCA, New Delhi, Delhi.

·       During the celebration, Meenakshi Lekhi, Minister of State (MoS) for Culture of India, launched the “Vigyan Vaibhav” portal developed by IGNCA.

Dignitaries: 
Riva Ganguly Das, a former Secretary of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), Goutam De, former Regional Director of ICCR, Rudranil Ghosh, an eminent actor from the Bengali film industry, Prof. O. P. Kalra SGT University, Dr Sachichidand Joshi, Member Secretary, IGNCA, Prof. Pratapanand Jha, Dean Academics and HoD CIL, IGNCA were present.
Vigyan Vaibhav Portal:
i. Vigyan Vaibhav is dedicated to 75 eminent Indian scientists who have done groundbreaking work in the field of science and technology.
ii. The portal identifies the contribution of women and men in equal numbers in the field of science.
iii. It is a collective effort and its launch can be seen as an extension of the launch of ‘Kala Vaibhav’ which was recently launched at IGNCA.
Rabindra Jayanti:
i. Rabindra Jayanti is annually celebrated across India on the 25th day of the Bengali month of Boishakh to commemorate the birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore, a Bengali polymath.
ii. Rabindranath Tagore was the 1st non-European to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913 for his poetry collection, “Gitanjali”, which was written in Bengali and later translated into English.
iii. The intersection of culture and science was provided by Rabindranath Tagore and those ideals were carried forward by Visva Bharati University.

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6) TN CM M.K. Stalin inaugurates 570-meter Skywalk Bridge at T Nagar

On 16th May 2023, Tamil Nadu (TN) Chief Minister (CM)  Muthuvel Karunanidhi Stalin (M. K. Stalin) inaugurated a 570 metres long and 4.2-metre wide Skywalk Bridge connecting the Mambalam railway station and T Nagar bus terminus in Chennai, TN.

·       The inaugurated sidewalk bridge is the longest skywalk in Tamil Nadu and it is considered one of the longest skywalks in India.

·       The skywalk was constructed at a cost of Rs 28.45 crore. As many as 20,000 pedestrians are expected to use the skywalk daily.

·       The Skywalk has been built along Madley Road and Railway Market Road to ease congestion in stretches such as Ranganathan Street and Natesan Street in the commercial areas of T. Nagar, Chennai, TN.

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INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS


7) UNEP Report: Measures to Reduce 80% of World’s Plastic Pollution by 2040

United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)’s report “Turning off the Tap: How the world can end plastic pollution and Create a circular economy” states that global plastic pollution can be reduced by up to 80% by 2040 if the companies and countries make policies and market shifts using existing technologies.
The report released ahead of the second round of negotiations in Paris, France, is aimed at agreeing to a world-first international plastics treaty to beat plastic pollution.

·       The treaty negotiations, known as INC2, will take place from May 29 to June 2, 2023.  The treaty would address the whole life of plastics from production to disposal.

Highlights:
i.The report focuses on 3 main market shifts that are required to to create a circular economy that keeps produced items in circulation as long as possible and to replace the widespread use of single-use plastics and their inappropriate disposal.
The 3 key shifts are,

·       Accelerate Reuse.

·       Accelerate Recycling.

·       Reorient and Diversify the market for sustainable and safe plastic alternatives.

ii.The report highlights that recycling could achieve an additional 20% by 2040 if the process of recycling becomes a more stable and profitable venture and fossil fuel subsidies are removed.
iii.The reuse systems provide the highest opportunity to reduce plastic pollution, up to 30% reduction by 2040, by replacing some of the most problematic and unnecessary products.
iv.The replacement of plastic wraps and sachets with compostable materials(sustainable alternatives) could yield an additional 17% reduction.
Key Points:
i.The report stated that 1 million plastic bottles are purchased every minute while up to 5 trillion plastic bags are used worldwide every year. Around 50% of all plastic produced is designed for single-use purposes and around 400 million tonnes of plastic waste are generated every year.
ii.An investment of around USD 65 billion a year is required for the overall shift.
iii.Reducing plastic pollution by 80% would prevent damage valued at more than USD 3 trillion including impacts on health, climate, air pollution, the ocean environment and legal costs for cases brought against plastic companies.
iv.The 80% reduction will also prevent 500 million tons of CO2 (Carbon dioxide) emissions per year.

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BANKING & FINANCE


8) IDBI, BOB and SBI Capital Appointed to manage IREDA IPO

The Union government has appointed the three merchant bankers IDBI Capital Market & Securities Ltd, BOB Capital Markets Ltd and SBI Capital Markets Ltd to manage the initial public offer (IPO) of the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA). IDBI Capital is the lead banker for the transaction.

·       Separately, Saraf and Partner was appointed as the legal adviser for the IPO.

·       The IPO, which is expected in FY24, will likely comprise a 10% stake sale by the government and 15% fresh equity issuance by the renewable energy project financier to fund its business growth.

Backdrop:
i.The Union government intends to List the unlisted state-owned firms to unlock value in those companies and also improve corporate governance.
ii.In June 2017, Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) decided to allow IREDA to issue 139 million fresh equity shares of Rs 10 each to the public on a book-building basis through IPO. Further, The government infused capital to the tune of Rs 1,500 crore in March 2022.
iii.On May 15, 2023, the government invited applications for hiring an advertising agency and a registrar for the IREDA IPO and on March 17, 2023, the CCEA approved the IREDA IPO.
About Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA):
i.IREDA is a Mini Ratna (Category – I) Government of India Enterprise under the administrative control of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).
ii.It is a Public Limited Government Company established as a Non-Banking Financial Institution in 1987 engaged in promoting, developing and extending financial assistance for setting up projects relating to new and renewable sources of energy and energy efficiency/conservation.
iii.As of date, IREDA has financed more than 3,068 Renewable Energy (RE) project loan accounts with cumulative loan sanction and disbursement of Rs 1.42 trillion and Rs 0.9 trillion respectively.
iv.It has supported the RE capacity addition of 19,502 MW in India. The company’s net profit increased by 50% to Rs 611 crore in the first nine months of FY23(i.e, April to December 2022).
Headquarters – New Delhi, Delhi
Chairman and Managing Director – Pradip Kumar Das

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9) HDFC AMC launches India’s first Mutual Fund focused on Defence Sector

On May 16, 2023, the HDFC Asset Management Company (AMC) Limited, investment manager to HDFC Mutual Fund (HDFC MF) announced the launch of the ‘HDFC Defence Fund’ i.e. India’s first mutual fund that plans to invest in the defence sector.

·       It follows a bottom-up approach to portfolio construction within the defence ecosystem.

·       Objective: To provide long-term capital appreciation by investing predominantly in equity and equity-related securities of Defence & allied sector companies.

·       The new fund offering (NFO) of HDFC Defence Fund, an open-ended equity scheme would open from May 19, 2023 and close on June 2 2023.

Key Points:
i.At least 80% of the net assets of the defence fund will be invested in defence and allied sector companies.
ii.The Defence and allied sector stocks include stocks forming part of aerospace and defence, explosives, shipbuilding, and allied services.
iii.The defence fund will invest in companies with good quality management with demonstrated track records and aims to achieve diversification by following a multi-cap strategy.
iv.The fund’s focus would be on growth and quality at reasonable valuations by investing across large, mid and small-cap stocks.
Note – HDFC Defence Fund will be managed by Abhishek Poddar, Fund Manager, Equity and Senior Equity Analyst, Dealing & Investments, HDFC Asset Management Company Limited.
Potential of Defence Sector: 

·       As global countries are improving their defence capabilities, defence expenditure is set to increase globally.

·       As per the statement of HDFC AMC, with Self-reliance in defence led by strong R&D (Research and Development) focus and enhancement of manufacturing capabilities would create an opportunity for Indian companies to serve the domestic market as well as tap the large export potential.

About HDFC Asset Management Company (AMC) Ltd
MD and CEO –  Navneet Munot
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra

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10) Zomato UPI: Zomato inks pact with ICICI Bank to launch its own UPI

Zomato has collaborated with ICICI Bank to introduce its own Unified Payments Interface (UPI) service called ‘Zomato UPI’ for select users.

·       This feature allows customers to make direct payments within the Zomato app by creating their own UPI ID, eliminating the need for redirection to external payment gateways like PhonePe, Google Pay, or other third-party apps.

·       Users can utilize this service for both peer-to-peer transactions and merchant payments.

Key Points:
i. Zomato UPI will be further expanded on the initial customer response.
ii.This will allow Zomato to exercise better control over the payments taking place on its platform.
iii.In November 2022, dining out program, Zomato Pay, using which customers can make payments at some of its partner restaurants and avail some cashbacks and offers. However, this is not a UPI offering.
Note: This development is a part of the broader attempt by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), governing body UPI network, to bring large consumer internet companies to the network to reduce dependency on Walmart-owned PhonePe and Google’s Gpay, which currently dominate the UPI transaction market.
About Zomato:
Founder & CEO– Deepinder Goyal
Headquarters– Gurugram, Haryana
Establishment– 2010

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ECONOMY & BUSINESS


11) UN Projected India’s GDP Grwoth at 5.8% in 2023 , 6.7% in 2024

According to the report World Economic Situation and Prospects as of mid-2023, of the United Nations (UN) released on May 16, 2023,  India’s economy, the largest in the South Asian region, is expected to grow by 5.8% in 2023 and 6.7% in 2024, supported by resilient domestic demand.

·       Global Economy: The report projected the world economy to grow by 2.3% in 2023 and 2.5% in 2024.

·       The volume of global trade in goods and services is forecasted to grow by 2.3% in 2023, which is below the pre-pandemic trend.

Report over Indian Economy:
i.In India higher interest rates and weaker external demand were expected to continue to weigh on investment and exports in 2023
ii.Inflation is expected to decelerate to 5.5% in 2023 as global commodity prices moderate and slower currency depreciation reduces imported inflation.
About United Nations (UN)
Headquarters – New York, USA
Establishment – 1945
Secretary-General – António Guterres

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APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATIONS


12) Slovakia President appoints Central banker Ludovit Odor as interim PM

On May 15 2023, Zuzana Caputova President of Slovakia appointed Ludovit Odor, a Slovak economist and former Deputy Governor of the National Bank of Slovakia as interim Prime Minister (PM) of Slovakia. He will head the 15-member cabinet of Slovakia till the elections, which will be held in September 2023.

·       Prior to this appointment, Ludovit Odor served as Deputy Governor of the National Bank of Slovakia from 2018 to 14th May 2023.

·       Ludovit Odor, takes over as the PM from Eduard Heger, who resigned from the post on 7th May 2023.

President Zuzana Caputova has also appointed economist Michal Horvath, Chief Economist of the National Bank of Slovakia as Slovakia’s interim finance minister.
Note: The interim government is mandated to help people struggling with inflation, prepare the budget for 2024 and ensure budget sustainability.
About Ludovit Odor:
i. LudovitOdorbelongs to the Slovakia’s Hungarian minority, and does not belong to any political party. The member of his government (interim government) will not contest in the upcoming election.
ii. From 1999 to 2001, LudovitOdor served as an analyst for Československáobchodní banka (CSOB), one of the largest commercial banks operating in the Czech Republic.
iii. He also served as the chief economist of the Ministry of Finance of the Slovak Republic from 2003 to 2005.
iv. In January 2006, he became a board member of the National Bank of Slovakia and he was on the central bank’s board until 2010 and in 2012, he was also an adviser to the then Prime Minister IvetaRadičová.
v. In September 2015, he was appointed vice-chairman of the European Union’s Network of Independent Fiscal Institutions.
vi. In 2017 he became a member of the supervisory board of Slovenskásporiteľňa and a member of the Council for Budget Responsibility.
vii. Since 2016, he has been a visiting professor at the Central European University (CEU).
viii. In February 2018 became Deputy Governor of the National Bank of Slovakia. He is a co-founder of the Institute for Financial Policy, and the Value for Money Department at the Ministry of Finance as well as the independent Council for Budget Responsibility.
ix. He also played a role in the reform of the pension system, the adoption of the euro, and the creation of budget rules.
PM Eduard Heger’s Resignation:
In December 2022, Slovakia’s parliament voted to oust the three-party government of Prime Minister Eduard Heger.
Eduard Heger who had planned to stay on in a caretaker capacity until early polls, resigned on 7th May 2023 after four members of his caretaker government resigned.
Since December 15 2022, Slovakia has been without a proper government when the coalition government led by the then Prime Minister Eduard Heger lost a vote of no confidence in parliament called by the opposition, following months of political crisis.
About Slovakia:
Capital– Bratislava
President– Zuzana Čaputová
Prime Minister– Ludovit Odor (interim)
Currency- Slovak Koruna

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13) Raheja QBE General Insurance appoints Rajeev Dogra as the new MD & CEO

Mumbai (Maharashtra)-based Raheja QBE General Insurance Company Limited has appointed Rajeev Dogra as its new Managing Director (MD) & Chief Executive Officer (CEO), following approval from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI). He succeeded Pankaj Arora.

·       Rajeev Dogra joined the company in 2011 in Sales and Distribution division. He is an MBA from the Faculty of Management Studies (FMS) Delhi, a Bachelor of Law (Delhi University), a Fellow member of The Insurance Institute of India (FIII), and a distinction holder of INSEAD’s Leadership Program.

Raheja QBE General Insurance Company Limited is a joint venture between Prism Johnson Limited (Formerly Prism Cement Limited), India and QBE Holdings (AAP) Pty. Ltd. & QBE Asia Pacific Holdings Ltd., subsidiaries of Australian based global general insurance and reinsurance services leader, QBE Insurance Group Limited.    

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14) Paytm appoints Bhavesh Gupta as President & COO

On 16th May 2023, Noida (Uttar Pradesh)-based One97 Communications Ltd, which owns Paytm, appointed Bhavesh Gupta as President and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Paytm

·       Bhavesh Gupta, with 25 years of experience in financial services, will be responsible for leading the verticals of lending insurance, payments (online and offline), and consumer payments, and driving key initiatives including user growth, operation risk, fraud risk, and compliance.

·       He will be reporting to Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Paytm.

·       In 2020, he was appointed as Paytm’s CEO of lending and head of payments.

·       Prior to joining Paytm in 2020, Bhavesh Gupta held multiple leadership roles including CEO of Clix Capital (formerly known as GE Capital), Head of SME (Small and Medium enterprises) & Business Banking at IDFC Bank Limited and was also associated with ICICI bank Limited in various roles.

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ENVIRONMENT


15) Gekko Mizoramensis: Researchers from Mizoram & Germany discovered New Flying Gecko Species in Mizoram

A team of researchers from the Mizoram University and the Max Planck Institute for Biology in Tubingen, Germany, discovered a new species of flying gecko named “Gekko Mizoramensis” along the Indo-Mynmar border.
The new species has been named Gekko Mizoramensis after the state of Mizoram.

·       The team was led by Prof Hmar Tlawmte Lalremsanga, Head of the Department of Zoology, Mizoram University.

·       The researchers discovered the species in Mizoram, as well as regions of Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, and Cambodia.

·       Geckos are small, mostly carnivorous lizards found in warm climates throughout the world. Their unique feature among lizards is their vocalisation and loud mating calls.

·       The new species is related to the sister species “Gekko popaensis,” however it differs in shape and colour pattern. It has a divergence of 7–14% from its sister species.

The study on the new species, which is also called gliding geckos, has been published in the latest issue of Salamandra, a German journal on herpetology or the study of amphibians and reptiles.

·       The study was conducted in association with Max Planck Institute for Biology, Max-Planck-Ring, Tübingen, Germany.

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OBITUARY


16) Australian Tennis Player Owen Davidson, winner of 13 Grand Slam doubles titles, passed away 

On May 12 2023, Australian tennis player Owen Davidson, who won 13 Grand Slam doubles titles, passed away at the age of 79 in Conroe, Texas, the United States of America (USA). He was born on October 4, 1943 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
About Owen Davidson: 
i. Owen Davidson won 11 major titles in mixed doubles and two in men’s doubles during his career that spanned from the early 1960s to mid-1970s.

·       He teamed with Billie Jean King of the USA to win 8 of 11 Mixed Grand Slam trophies.

·       In 1967 he won a calendar year slam for mixed doubles. He won the Australian Championships with Lesley Turner Bowrey, and the French Championships, Wimbledon and the US Championships with Billie Jean King.

·       With this he became only the third player in tennis history to earn all four major mixed doubles titles in the same year.

ii. He won the Mixed doubles Grand slam titles at Australian Open 1965 & 1967; French Open 1967; Wimbledon in 1967, 1971, 1973 & 1974 and US Open in 1966, 1967, 1971 & 1973. In Men’s doubles, he won the title in Australian Open 1972 and the US Open 1973.
iii. On April 22 1968, he played in the first match of the Open Era, defeating John Clifton, a British tennis player in the first round of the British Hard Court Championships and he became the first player to win a match in the open era of tennis.

·       In Singles, Owen Davidson held the career record of 253 wins out of 403 matches.

He also played on Australia’s Davis Cup team and coached the British team from 1967 to 1970. He also worked as the head pro at Wimbledon.
Honours: 
i. In 2010, Owen Davidson, a player with left-handed style, was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, Rhode Island, US.
ii. In 2011, he was inducted into the Australian Tennis Hall of Fame at the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia.
Books: Davidson has authored 2 books, “Lawn Tennis: The Great Ones and Great Women Tennis Players” and “Tackle Lawn Tennis Way”.

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17) Former Arunachal Pradesh minister Chow Tewa Mein dies at 80

On May 15, 2023, the former Arunachal Pradesh (AP) minister Chow Tewa Mein (80 years), an elder brother of AR’s Deputy Chief Minister (CM) Chowna Mein, passed away after a prolonged illness.

·       Hailing from Chongkham village of AR, he was elected as a member of Pradesh Council in 1972., and He served as MLA (Member of the Legislative Assembly) from Chowkham constituency in 1995, 2004, 2009 and 2014.

·       He also served as the horticulture minister in 1995 and as PHE & WS (Public Health Engineering & Water Supply ) Minister  in 1998; as parliamentary secretary in the Animal Husbandry, Veterinary & Dairy Development Department in 2009; and in Environment & Forest Department from 2011-2019 till his retirement from active politics.

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IMPORTANT DAYS


18) World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2023 – May 17

The United Nations(UN)’s World Telecommunication and Information Society Day(WTISD) is annually observed across the globe on 17th May to create awareness about the uses of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT) in societies and economies. The day also aims to raise awareness about the ways to bridge the Digital divide.
WTISD 2023 is observed on 17th May 2023 under the theme – “Empowering the least developed countries through information and communication technologies”.
Background:
i.World Telecommunication Day has been celebrated annually on 17 May since 1969.

·       The day marks the founding anniversary of the signing of the 1st International Telegraph Convention on 17 May 1865 in Paris, France and the creation of the International Telegraph Union(ITU)- now known as the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

ii.The United Nations General Assembly(UNGA) adopted the resolution A/RES/60/252 on 27th March 2006 and proclaimed the 17th May of every year as World Information Society Day.
iii.In November 2006, the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in Antalya, Turkey(Türkiye), decided to celebrate both events on 17 May as World Telecommunication and Information Society Day.
About International Telecommunication Union (ITU):
ITU is the UN’s specialized agency for information and communication technologies – ICTs.
Secretary-General– Doreen Bogdan-Martin
Founded in 1865
Headquarters– Geneva, Switzerland

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19) World Hypertension Day 2023 – May 17

World Hypertension Day is annually observed across the globe on May 17 to raise awareness about hypertension, commonly known as high blood pressure, and promote its prevention, detection and control.

·       World Hypertension Day 2023 was observed on 17th May 2023 under the theme “Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer”.

The day aims to communicate to the public the importance of hypertension and its serious medical complications.
i. World Hypertension League (WHL) initiated a global campaign on Hypertension in 2005 and observed the first-ever World Hypertension Day on 14th May 2005.
ii. From 2006 onwards, WHL dedicated the 17th May of every year as “World Hypertension Day”.
About the World Health Organization (WHO):
Director General- Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
Headquarters- Geneva, Switzerland
Establishment- 7 April 1948

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20) International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia 2023 – May 17

International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOTB) is annually observed across the globe on May 17 to raise awareness about Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Intersex (LGBTQI+) issues.
IDAHOTB  2023 was observed on 17th May 2023 under the theme “Together Always: United in Diversity”.
Note:
The IDAHOTB is currently celebrated in more than 130 countries, including 37 countries where same-sex acts are illegal.
i. The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia was established in 2004 to highlight the difficulties faced by the people of the LGBT community.
ii. The day was officially founded by Louis-Georges Tin, a French academic and activist against homophobia and racism, in 2004.

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STATE NEWS


21) Mukhyamantri Krishak Byaaj Maafi Yojana-2023: Interest waiver scheme for farmers launched in MP

The Chief Minister (CM) of Madhya Pradesh (MP) Shivraj Singh Chouhan has launched a farm loan interest waiver scheme namely ‘Mukhyamantri Krishak Byaaj Maafi Yojana-2023 or the Chief Minister Farmer Loan Waiver Scheme’ to compensate the defaulter farmers, who have outstanding loans of up to Rs 2 lakh including the principal and interest as on March 31, 2023, from Primary Agricultural Credit Cooperative Societies (PACS).

·       Under this outstanding amounts of Rs 2,123 crore will be waived off for 11,19,000 farmers, and will also be certified as default-free.

·       This initiative will make the farmers eligible for the crop loan scheme at a 0% interest rate.

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