Science & Technology
1. Asia’s largest 4-metre liquid mirror telescope inaugurated in Uttarakhand
- Union MoS (Independent Charge) Science & Technology Dr. Jitendra Singh has inaugurated Asia’s largest 4-meter International Liquid Mirror Telescope (ILMT) at Devasthal in Uttarakhand.
- It is situated at an altitude of 2450 meters at the observatory, which lies at the campus of Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences.
- The ILMT employs a 4-meter-diameter rotating mirror, which was made up of a thin layer of liquid mercury, to collect and focus light.
National & International Appointments
2. Manmeet K Nanda gets an additional charge of MD & CEO of Invest India
- The board members of Invest India appointed Manmeet K Nanda, an IAS, West Bengal Cadre (2000 Batch), as the Managing Director & CEO (Additional charge) of Invest India.
- She is joint secretary in the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).
- She has replaced Deepak Bagla, who resigned from the post.
- Deepak Bagla has served the organization for nearly 8 years and contributed to Invest India’s development.
3. NTPC, Indian Army sign MoU for implementation of Green Hydrogen Projects
- NTPC Renewable Energy Ltd has signed an MoU with Indian Army for setting up Green Hydrogen Projects in its establishments on Build, Own, and Operate (BOO) model.
- Aim: To reduce complex logistics and dependence on fossil fuels and to accelerate decarbonization.
- NTPC REL CEO, Mohit Bhargava and Lt. General Rajinder Dewan signed MoU.
- NTPC REL will also design, develop, and install renewable energy projects for the Indian Army.
- NTPC REL is a wholly subsidiary of NTPC.
Honours & Awards
4. Indian-American Mindy Kaling awarded the National Humanities Medals
- US President Joe Biden has awarded the prestigious 2021 National Humanities Medal to Indian-American actress and producer Mindy Kaling.
- Reason: For empowering the new generation to tell their stories with irreverence and sincerity
- The National Medal of Arts is the highest award, given to artists, arts patrons, and groups by the US government.
- Other notable recipients: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Bruce Springsteen, Vera Wang, Gladys Knight, Judith Francisca Baca
5. Bihar celebrates 111th foundation day
- Bihar observed its 111th foundation day on March 22, 2023.
- On this day, the state of Bihar was carved out from the Bengal presidency in 1912.
- The theme of the 2023 event is "Yuva Shakti Bihar ki Pragati".
- This year, a number of events are being organized in Gandhi Maidan, Patna from March 22 to 24, 2023.
- Governor Rajendra Vishwanath Arlekar and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar have congratulated people on the occasion of Bihar Divas.
6. World Water Day 2023: 22nd March
- World Water day is celebrated on March 22 every year to spread awareness about the water crisis all over the world.
- UNGA adopted World Water Day in 1992.
- The theme for 2023 is "Accelerating the change to solve the water and sanitation crisis."
- In 2015, the world was committed to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 as part of the 2030 agenda.
- A promise to provide safely managed water and sanitation by 2030.
- The report is published on World Water Day every year.
7. GRSE launched the 'Most Silent Ship' INS Androth
- Indian Navy launched INS Androth, the second in a series of eight indigenous ships built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) at a Kidderpore yard, Kolkata.
- It is an Anti-Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Craft (ASWSWC).
- It is a 77.6-meter-long and 10.5-meter-wide vessel, propelled by three diesel-driven water jets that will pack a punch.
- The ship is capable of a maximum 25 knots speed and will carry lightweight torpedoes, ASW rockets, and mines.
National & International Organizations
8. Ranveer Singh named India's most valuable celebrity of 2022
- According to a Kroll report 'Celebrity Brand Valuation Report 2022: Beyond the Mainstream', with a brand value of $181.7 million, actor Ranveer Singh is India's most valued celebrity of 2022.
- He surpassed cricketer Virat Kohli, who occupied the top spot for five years.
- Kohli ranked second, followed by actors Akshay Kumar, and Alia Bhatt.
- Notably, the aggregate brand value of the top 25 celebrities is $1.6 billion in 2022 (estimated), a 29.1% rise from 2021.
Banking & Finance
9. More than 40% hike in enrolments under APY in FY 2021-22 from FY 2019-20
- According to the data shared by the Union MoS for Finance, Dr. Bhagwat Kisanrao Karad in Rajya Sabha, the enrolments under Atal Pension Yojana have shown a hike of more than 40% hike in FY 2021-22 from FY 2019-20.
- The total fund allocated under APY for Government Co-contribution, Payment of Incentives to Banks, Promotional Campaigns, and Gap fund is Rs. 2078.94 crore (2015 to Feb 2023).
- Out of the total amount, Rs. 1529.41 crores has been released till February 2023.
10. Tamil Nadu’s 18th wildlife sanctuary to come up in Erode
- The Tamil Nadu Government has notified Thanthai Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary as the 18th wildlife sanctuary in the state.
- It is spread over 80,567 hectares in the forest areas of Anthiyur and Gobichettipalayam taluks in Erode district.
- It is close to Malai Mahadeshwara wildlife sanctuary, BRT Wildlife Sanctuary, and Cauvery wildlife sanctuary in Karnataka.
- It also acts as a connecting point between Nilgiris Biosphere Reserve and Cauvery South Wildlife Sanctuary.
11. Groundwater: A Valuable but Diminishing Resource Report
- According to a Parliamentary Standing Committee report, the groundwater levels in Delhi, Ghaziabad, Faridabad, and 20 other cities dipped by more than 20 meters from 2017 to 2020.
- While Faridabad (Haryana) becomes 100% dependent on groundwater use and cities like Ghaziabad (UP) are on the verge of becoming totally dependent on it.
- The total annual extractable groundwater resource of 398 billion cubic meters (BCM) in the country till 2020, 245 BCM was being extracted.
Banking & Finance
12. Indian economy to grow at 7%; inflation set to moderate: Finance Ministry
- According to the Finance Ministry report, the Indian economy is expected to grow at 7% in FY23 despite global headwinds.
- Retail inflation would moderate in line with wholesale inflation which fell to a 25-month low in January 2023.
- It will be supported by the gains from high services exports, the moderation in oil prices, and the recent fall in import-intensive consumption demand.
- The current account deficit (CAD) of India is estimated to fall in FY23 and FY24.
Banking & Finance
13. Axis Bank signed co-lending pact with Autotrac Finance through Yubi
- Axis Bank has entered into a co-lending pact with Autotrac Finance (AFL) through YubiCo.Lend platform to offer new tractor loans for agricultural and allied activities in rural segments of the country.
- This partnership will leverage the wide customer experience of Autotrac Finance and the deep financial expertise of Axis Bank to enable easy credit availability for farmers.
- They would be able to reach out to potential customers.
- Axis Bank CEO: Amitabh Chaudhry
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