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Daily & Latest Current Affairs in 2024

Current Affairs is a very important part of the overall preparation strategy for various Competitive Entrance and Government Recruitment Exams. Free Time Learning offers Today Current Affairs provides latest and Best Daily Current Affairs for UPSC, IAS/PCS, UPPSC, IBPS, SBI, RBI, SSC, CGL, Railway, APPSC, TSPSC, KPSC, TNPSC, TPSC, UPPSC, MPSC, RPSC, BPSC, MPPSC, UKPSC, MPSC, and other competitive exams.

Devdutt Chand
Rohit Rishi
Rajneesh Karnatak
Shanti Lal Jain

Correct Answer : Option (B) - Rohit Rishi

Rohit Rishi has assumed the position of Executive Director at the Bank of Maharashtra. The appointment is for a tenure of three years, starting from November 1, 2023 in place of Shri A.B. Vijayakumar.

His extensive experience, academic qualifications, and professional acumen make him a valuable addition to the bank’s leadership team.

A Diverse and Accomplished Career :

Rohit Rishi’s professional journey started in 1995 when he joined Indian Bank as an Industrial Development Officer. With over 28 years of experience, he has successfully navigated through diverse aspects of the banking industry. Throughout his career, Rishi has demonstrated his ability to thrive in diverse roles, contributing significantly to the growth and transformation of the organizations he served.

Rohit Rishi’s Academic Background and Banking Expertise :

Rohit Rishi holds a B. Tech degree in Textiles, an MBA in Finance, and is a Certified Associate of the Indian Institute of Bankers (CAIIB). His experience spans across various aspects of banking, with a strong focus on MSME, Mid-Corporate, and Corporate credit.

Some of the notable roles he has held include :

* Industrial Development Officer: His career began with this crucial role, where he gained foundational experience in the Indian banking sector.

* AGM MSME/ Corporate Office, Chennai: His journey led him to the southern part of India, where he contributed to the bank’s growth and development.

* Head of Bank’s Flagship Branch in New Delhi: Taking on a leadership role, Rohit Rishi made a significant impact by managing the bank’s flagship branch in the nation’s capital.

* DGM (Corporate Branch, New Delhi): His progression within the banking sector continued, and he served in the capacity of Deputy General Manager in the corporate branch of New Delhi.

* FGM at Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Delhi: Rohit Rishi’s expertise extended across different regions in India, contributing to the bank’s operations and growth in various major cities.

* Role in Amalgamation of Allahabad Bank into Indian Bank: As a General Manager, Rohit Rishi played an active role in the successful amalgamation of Allahabad Bank into Indian Bank. His contribution during this process highlighted his leadership and decision-making skills.

Rohit Rishi’s Impact: Navigating Banking Regulations and Innovating Financial Solutions :

Rohit Rishi’s notable achievement includes his pivotal role in shaping and executing policies that adeptly address intricate banking regulations, ensuring a stable and secure financial landscape. His proficiency in product innovation has led to the introduction of cutting-edge financial solutions tailored to evolving customer demands, enabling institutions to stay competitive and aligned with a swiftly evolving financial industry.

Published On : November 6, 2023
Hindustan Petroleum
Indian Oil Corporation
Bharat Petroleum

Correct Answer : Option (C) - Indian Oil Corporation

The State-owned Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has acquired Mercator Petroleum Limited (MPL) through an insolvency proceeding. The acquisition, valued at approximately Rs 148 crore, was approved by the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) under the relevant provisions of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016.

The Acquisition and Resolution Plan :

The acquisition of MPL strengthens Indian Oil presence in the oil and gas exploration sector. MPL holds an onland oil and gas exploration block in the Cambay Basin, Gujarat with significant potential for oil discovery, estimated at 45.5 million barrels of inplace reserves. In November 2019, IOC had already signed a contract to purchase oil from MPL, making this acquisition a logical step in further cementing their collaboration.

Resolution Plan and Payment Structure :

* Under the resolution plan submitted by IOC, the company will pay Rs 135 crore to secured financial creditors who had admitted claims totaling Rs 291 crore. However, no payment has been designated for unsecured financial creditors, who had admitted claims of Rs 118 crore.

* Additionally, the resolution plan offers Rs 5.40 crore to operational creditors, which includes vendors, workmen, employees, and statutory dues, against their total admitted claims of Rs 73 crore. IOC has also agreed to bear the insolvency proceeding cost of Rs 8.7 crore, demonstrating its commitment to ensuring a smooth transition of MPL.

Background of the Insolvency Proceeding :

* The insolvency proceeding of MPL was initiated by Cayman Island-based oil services company Halliburton Offshore Services Inc. in August 2021. This action came after Mercator defaulted on a payment of Rs 2.87 crore, which eventually led to the company being brought under the insolvency process.

Committee of Creditors Approval :

* The resolution plan proposed by IOC received a unanimous 100 percent vote of approval from the committee of creditors. Following this approval, the plan moved forward to the National Company Law Tribunal, which subsequently granted its consent for the acquisition.

GAIL’s Acquisition of JBF Petrochemicals in an Insolvency Battle :

* Earlier in the year, GAIL (Gas Authority of India Limited) acquired JBF Petrochemicals, a private-sector chemical company, for Rs 2,079 crore. This strategic move allowed GAIL to expand its presence in the petrochemical business.
* In this case, GAIL outbid a consortium of IOC and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) in an insolvency process managed by IDBI Bank. The acquisition helped recover Rs 5,628 crore of dues to financial and operational creditors.

Published On : November 6, 2023
2nd Nov 2023
3rd Nov 2023
4th Nov 2023
5th Nov 2023

Correct Answer : Option (B) - 3rd Nov 2023

Renowned playwright, poet, painter, and thinker Gieve Patel passed away at the Cipla Palliative Care and Training Centre in Pune on Friday (3rd Nov 2023) afternoon, He was 83.

Patel, who had been battling cancer, was admitted to the Pune centre a few weeks ago. He is survived by a daughter, it added.

Born in Mumbai, Gieve Patel was a graduate of Grant Government Medical College. He rose to prominence in the world of arts and literature through his notable contributions as a playwright, poet, and painter.

Condolences from the Literary Community :

Noted writer Shanta Gokhale, who translated Patel's work, "Mister Behram", into Marathi, shared her memories with the paper, saying, "I knew Gieve for the last fifty years, and our association continued until the final days of his life. He was a multi-talented personality, yet remained down-to-earth."

Poet Ganesh Vispute expressed the sentiment of a significant loss in the Indian literary circle, stating, "He was a writer, poet, and a great thinker. He was the torchbearer of the Modern Indian literary movement."

Gieve Patel's passing marks the end of an era in the world of Indian arts and literature..

Source : Mint

Published On : November 6, 2023
Sri Lanka

Correct Answer : Option (A) - Bhutan

Bhutan King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck arrived here on Sunday (5th Nov 2023) to a red carpet welcome with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar receiving him at the airport, reflecting the importance India has attached to the trip.

Wangchuck's high-profile trip to India comes amid renewed push by Bhutan and China for an early settlement of their decades-old boundary dispute.

New Delhi has been keeping a close eye on the negotiations between Bhutan and China on their boundary row as it could have implications for India's security interests, especially in the Doklam tri-junction.

Key Highlights :

* King Wangchuck’s eight-day visit to India began in Guwahati on November 3. External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar personally welcomed the Bhutanese monarch at the airport, underscoring India’s commitment to the visit.

* The visit aims to further strengthen the already close bonds of friendship and cooperation between the two nations, highlighting the strategic partnership that India maintains with Bhutan.

* During his visit, King Wangchuck is scheduled to meet with both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, signifying the importance of the discussions to take place.

* The Ministry of External Affairs had earlier expressed that the visit offers an opportunity for both countries to review their extensive bilateral cooperation and to advance their exemplary partnership across various sectors.

China’s Involvement :

* In a noteworthy development, Bhutan reaffirmed its commitment to the one-China principle during talks with China, as indicated in a Chinese readout.
* This aligns Bhutan’s stance with China’s position on Taiwan, despite Bhutan not having official diplomatic relations with China.
* Bhutan and China agreed to expedite negotiations by implementing a “three-step roadmap” to resolve their border dispute, a move seen as positive progress in their dialogue.

Background :

* The signing of the pact between Bhutan and China followed a 73-day standoff in the Doklam tri-junction in 2017.
* This standoff occurred after China attempted to extend a road in an area that Bhutan claimed as its territory.
* India supported Bhutan’s claim, leading to tensions in the region and fears of a larger conflict between India and China.
* The Doklam tri-junction holds strategic significance, as it is the convergence point of borders between India, Bhutan, and China.
* Any resolution of the border dispute has direct implications for regional security dynamics..

Source : Business Standard

Published On : November 6, 2023
Ministry of Finance
Ministry of Commerce and Industry
Ministry of Rural Development
Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs

Correct Answer : Option (D) - Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs

The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) is all set to unveil a progressive initiative "Women for Water, Water for Women Campaign" under its flagship scheme - Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT), in partnership with the Ministry's National Urban Livelihood Mission (NULM). Odisha Urban Academy is the knowledge partner.

This campaign celebrates "Jal Diwali" and commences from, 7th November, 2023. It will continue till 9th November, 2023.

Campaign Aims : To provide a platform for inclusion of women in water governance. They will be given first-hand knowledge about water treatment processes through visits to Water Treatment Plants (WTPs) in their respective cities. These visits will elucidate the vital procedures involved in delivering clean and safe drinking water to households. Additionally, women will gain insight into water quality testing protocols which ensure that citizens get water of the required quality. The overarching goal of the campaign is to instill a sense of ownership and belonging among women towards water infrastructure.

India has more than 3,000 Water treatment plants, with a designed water treatment capacity of more than 65,000 MLD and operational capacity of more than 55,000 MLD. During the said campaign, women Self Help Groups (SHGs) will visit more than 550 water treatment plants, with a combined operational capacity of more than 20,000 MLD (more than 35% of the country’s total).

The women play a significant role in household water management. By empowering women with knowledge about water treatment processes and infrastructure, MoHUA aims to enhance their ability to ensure access to safe and clean drinking water for their households. The campaign aims to address issues of gender equality by promoting inclusivity and diversity in sectors traditionally dominated by men.

The phase I of "Women for Water, Water for Women Campaign", “Jal Diwali” shall witness participation from all States/ UTs (barring the 5 States under Model Code of Conduct), with an expected participation of more than 15,000 SHG women, nationwide. The focus areas of the campaign include:

* Familiarizing the women with functioning of Water Treatment Plants & water testing facilities
* Promote inclusivity & involvement through souvenirs & articles created by Women SHGs
* Familiarizing & educating the women about AMRUT scheme & its impact on water infrastructure

The anticipated outcomes of the campaign include increased awareness and knowledge on water treatment, sense of ownership and responsibility, promotion of inclusivity, empowerment of SHGs, positive community impact and model for future initiatives.

State and city officials from AMRUT and NULM will be facilitating these visits by identifying WTPs. MoHUA has called upon all State and City officials to actively participate and support this initiative, marking a significant stride towards including women in the vital space of water infrastructure under AMRUT..

Source : PIB

Published On : November 6, 2023
NITI Aayog
National Medical Commission
Election Commission of India
Indian Space Research Organisation

Correct Answer : Option (C) - Election Commission of India

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has designed in-house software ENCORE for complete Candidate and election management.

* This ENCORE software stands for Enabling Communications on Real-time Environment.

* This provides a seamless facility for Returning Officers to process candidate nomination, affidavit, Voter turnout, counting, results and data management.

* The ENCORE counting application is an end-to-end application for returning officers to digitize the votes polled, tabulate the round-wise data and then take out various statutory reports of counting.

* Another application called ENCORE Scrutiny Application allows Returning Officers to do scrutiny of the nominations filed by the candidates on-line.

* After verification of the nomination the status is marked as Accepted, Rejected or Withdrawn helping the Returning Officer to prepare the final list of contesting candidates and assign the symbols..

Source : AIR

Published On : November 4, 2023
World Bank
World Economic Forum
United Nations Development Programme
United Nations Environment Programme

Correct Answer : Option (D) - United Nations Environment Programme

According to Adaptation Gap Report, the money being made available to developing countries for adaptation measures has been declining, and nowhere close to the scale of requirement.

* It is annually published by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) since 2014.

* The aim of the reports is to inform national and international efforts to advance adaptation.

* It provides an update on the global status and progress of the adaptation process across three elements: planning, financing, and implementation.

* It complements the Emissions Gap Report series, and explores the implications of failing to close the emissions gap.

* It is co-produced by the UNEP Copenhagen Climate Centre (UNEP-CCC) and the World Adaptation Science Programme (WASP)..

Source : Indian Express

Published On : November 4, 2023
8 .
With reference to Rebate of State and Central Levies and Taxes (RoSCTL) Scheme, consider the following statements:

1. It aims to reimburse all embedded State and Central taxes for exports of manufactured goods and garments.

2. Importer-Exporter Codes (IECs) are necessary to apply for the scheme.

3. Rebates given in the form of duty credit scrips are non-transferable.

How many of the above statements are correct?
Only 1
Only 2
All 3
None of the above

Correct Answer : Option (B) - Only 2

The Government is planning to extend the tenure of the Rebate of State and Central Levies and Taxes (RoSCTL) Scheme till 2025-26.

About Rebate of State and Central Levies and Taxes (RoSCTL) Scheme :

* It aims to reimburse all embedded State and Central taxes/levies for exports of manufactured goods and garments.

* The RoSCTL scheme was notified by the Ministry of Textiles in 2019. However, the scheme shall be implemented by the Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance.

* This scheme has been introduced as a replacement for the previous Rebate of State Levies (RoSL) Scheme, which provided only rebates of state taxes.

* RoSCTL intends to compensate the State and Central Taxes and Levies in addition to the Duty Drawback Scheme on the export of apparel/ garments and made-ups manufactured in India by way of a rebate.

* Importer-Exporter Codes (IECs) are necessary in order to apply for the RoSCTL programme.

* The rebate under the RoSCTL Scheme shall be given to the exporter in the form of duty credit scrips, which will be maintained in the electronic duty credit ledger. The scrips shall be issued electronically on the Customs automated system.

* The duty credit scrips shall be used for payment of customs duties leviable under the First Schedule to the Customs Tariff Act, 1975. It cannot be utilized towards the payment of any other taxes, like IGST, Compensation Cess etc., upon the import of goods.

* The duty credit available in an e-scrip shall be transferred at a time for the entire amount in the said e-scrip to another person, and the transfer of the duty credit in part shall not be permitted.

* The value of the goods for calculation of duty credit to be allowed under the Scheme shall be the declared export Free on Board (FOB) value of the said goods or up to 1.5 times the market price of the said goods, whichever is less.

* All exporters of garments/Apparels and made-ups manufactured in India are eligible to take benefit under this scheme except entities/ IECs under the Denied Entity List of the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT)..

Source : Business Standard

Published On : November 4, 2023
30 Oct 2023
31st Oct 2023
1st Nov 2023
2nd Nov 2023

Correct Answer : Option (B) - 31st Oct 2023

Thomas K. Mattingly II, a NASA astronaut who helped bring Apollo 13 home, is dead at 87.

* Mattingly II died on Tuesday (31st Oct 2023), according to a press release from NASA.

* NASA selected him as an astronaut in 1966.

* He served as a support member for astronauts flying Apollo 8 and 11 missions.

* Mattingly, a designated command module pilot for Apollo 13, was removed from the flight due to exposure to measles.

* Although he couldn’t make the flight, the Chicago-born aviator was vital to “successfully bring[ing] home the wounded spacecraft and the crew of Apollo 13 – NASA astronauts James Lovell, Jack Swigert, and Fred Haise,” according to NASA.

* Mattingly said when he was in orbit, he had a “palpable fear that if I saw too much, I couldn’t remember.”

* “TK’s contributions have allowed for advancements in our learning beyond that of space,” said a NASA spokesperson. “As a leader in exploratory missions, TK will be remembered for braving the unknown for the sake of our country’s future.”

Published On : November 4, 2023
1st November
2nd November
3rd November
4th November

Correct Answer : Option (C) - 3rd November

On November 3, the world celebrates the International Day for Biosphere Reserves, a day established by UNESCO during its 41st General Conference in 2022. This occasion provides an opportunity to understand and appreciate Biosphere Reserves (BR) and their significance in preserving the delicate balance between nature and culture.

Biosphere Reserves play a crucial role in the conservation of our planet’s natural and cultural diversity. On the International Day for Biosphere Reserves, we acknowledge the significance of these reserves in striking a balance between human development, cultural preservation, and environmental protection. As we celebrate this day, we reflect on the need to expand and support these designated areas to safeguard our shared heritage for generations to come.

What Are Biosphere Reserves (BR)?

Overview of BR :

* BR is an international designation by UNESCO for representative parts of natural and cultural landscapes that extend across extensive terrestrial or coastal/marine ecosystems or a combination of both.

* Their purpose is to harmonize economic and social development, the preservation of cultural values, and the protection of nature.\BRs are nominated by national governments and remain under the sovereign jurisdiction of the states where they are located.

* Designation Process: These reserves are designated under the intergovernmental Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme by the Director-General of UNESCO following decisions made by the MAB International Coordinating Council (MAB ICC).

* Scientific Foundation: The MAB Programme is an intergovernmental scientific initiative striving to establish a scientific basis for enhancing the relationship between people and their environments.

* International Recognition: The status of BRs is internationally recognized.

Three Main Zones of a Biosphere Reserve :

Core Areas : Purpose: These are strictly protected zones, playing a pivotal role in the conservation of landscapes, ecosystems, species, and genetic variation.

Buffer Zones : Role: Buffer zones surround or adjoin the core areas and are designated for activities compatible with sound ecological practices. They can reinforce scientific research, monitoring, training, and education.

Transition Area : Function: Transition areas are where communities engage in socio-culturally and ecologically sustainable economic and human activities.

The Status of Biosphere Reserves in India and Worldwide :

In India :
* India currently boasts 18 notified biosphere reserves, spanning an impressive 60,000 square kilometers.
* Pioneering Reserve: The Nilgiris, encompassing the blue mountains in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Kerala, was India’s first biosphere reserve.
* Size Range: India’s biosphere reserves vary in size, with the Gulf of Kachchh in Gujarat being the largest and Dibru-Saikhowa in Assam the smallest. Other significant reserves include the Gulf of Mannar (Tamil Nadu), Sunderbans (West Bengal), and Cold Desert (Himachal Pradesh).

Around the World :
* Worldwide Presence : UNESCO recognizes 738 biosphere reserves in 134 countries, including 22 transboundary sites.
* Regional Distribution : Europe and North America host the highest number of reserves, followed by Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, and Arab states.
* South Asia : In South Asia, over 30 biosphere reserves have been established, with the Hurulu Biosphere Reserve in Sri Lanka being the first. Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Nepal have yet to establish biosphere reserves.
* Leading Countries: Spain, Russia, and Mexico have the highest number of biosphere reserves.

Published On : November 4, 2023