Daily Current Affairs for 17th August 2022

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GS Paper 1: Diversity in India
Important for
Prelims exam: Navroj’s history and significance
Why in news
This year, Navroz is being celebrated in India on August 16.

About Navroz

• The Parsi New Year i.e. the festival of Navroz or Nowroz falls between July and August where ‘Nav’ in Persian stands for ‘new’ while ‘Roz’ means ‘day’ that literally translates to ‘new day’.
• This tradition of celebrating Parsi New Year is believed to have been observed by Iranians and Zorastian for the past 3,000 years as it marks the beginning of the Iranian calendar and is celebrated till date by the Parsi community around the world with great pomp and show.


• The festival of Navroz or Jamshed-i-Navroz/Jamshed-i-Nouroz is named after the Persian king, Jamshed, who is credited for creating the Persian or the Shahenshahi calendar.
• As per the legend, Jamshed saved the world from an apocalypse that came in the form of a winter and was destined to kill everyone.
• King Jamshed used a throne studded with precious gems and rose to the heavens on the shoulders of demons where he shone brighter than the sun hence, a new day was born which was named as Navroz.

Why Navroz celebration in India is special/different

• Though celebrated in March globally, Navroz arrives 200 days later in India and is celebrated in the month of August as the Parsis here follow the Shahenshahi calendar that doesn’t account for leap years.
• Interestingly in India, people celebrate it twice a year.
o first according to the Iranian calendar
o second according to the Shahenshahi calendar which is followed by people here and in Pakistan.

Different new year celebration across india

  • Baisakhi: Punjab
  • Jude Sheetal: Bihar, Jharkhand and Nepal.
  • Bohag Bihu: North eastern state specially Assam
  • Gudi Padwa: Maharashtra
  • Ugadi: Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh
  • Vishu: Kerala
  • Pohela Boishakh: West Bengal
  • Gudi Padwa: Marathi New Year
  • Puthandu: Tamil Nadu
  • Losoong: Sikkim
  • Navreh: Kashmiri New Year
  • Losar: Arunachal Pradesh

Paalan 1000

GS Paper 2: Issues related to the development and management of the social sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources

Important for

Prelims exam: Paalan 1000
Mains exam: Women and Child care in India
Why in news
The central government has launched the Paalan 1000 National campaign and parenting app to focus on child health.

About Paalan 1000 National Campaign

• ‘Paalan 1000 – Journey of the First 1000 Days’, focuses on the cognitive developments of children in the first 2 years of their life.
• Paalan 1000 combines early years coaching for parents, families and other caregivers with services designed to meet families’ basic needs.
o Infants and toddlers are shaped by their experiences, and those experiences are shaped by their caregivers.
o Caregivers are crucial for a strong start in the first years of life.
• The programme is aligned with the mission of the Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK), emphasizing responsive care and focusing interventions on the first 1000 days.

About Paalan 1000 Parenting app

• PAALAN 1000 parenting app will provide caregiver with practical advice on what they can do in their everyday routine
• It will help resolve the various doubts of parents.
• It will direct the efforts in the development of child.Cognitive development of children under 2 years is a major focus area of this PAALAN 1000, and have focused on the 6 principles:
o Maximise Love
o Talk & Engage,
o explore through Movement and Play,
o Read and Discuss Stories,
o Mother’s Engagement with the Child while Breastfeeding
o Managing Stress and Staying Calm

Need of Palan 1000 campaign

• First thousand days encompasses the conception as well as the first two years of a child’s life and during this period, the growing child needs the right nutrition, stimulation, love and support.
• The first 1000 days establishes a solid platform for a child’s physical, mental, emotional, cognitive and social health.


GS Paper 3: Mobilisation of resources, Growth and Development
Important for
Mains exam: Steps taken by government to promote startup ecosystem in India

Why in news

Government has approved the StartUp loan for manufacturing and commercialising “compostable” plastic. This unique project has received seed funding under NIDHI Prayas(DST), Niti Aayog and UNIDO for the prototype development.


India had banned manufacturing, importing, stocking, distribution, sale and use of identified single use plastic items, which have low utility and high littering potential, all across the country on July 1, 2022. So to deal with this situation, the M/s TGP Bioplastics has come up with an alternative solution of Single Use Plastic (SUP) with the prototype of a compostable plastic material which breaks down as a compost in soil without affecting the environment.

Problems with the already available composites

• Currently, very few degradable materials/composites are available in the market. Most of them cost more than Rs. 280/kg for the raw materials. The cheapest degradable polymer today is Polybutylene adipate terephthalate (PBAT) which is available at Rs. 280-300/kg, whereas conventional plastic raw materials cost around Rs. 90/kg.
• Hence, the market willingness for the degradable plastic is less.
• To solve this problem, StartUp has developed a new composite material which is cheaper than the available compostable plastic (~Rs 180/kg), having comparable strength.

Composite Plastic:

• The composite is a unique blend of Thermoplastic-Starch (TPS)-glycerin with some chemical modifications that provides higher strength with low manufacturing cost.
• The granules prepared from this composite can be moulded into any shape and used as per the requirement, and it further breaks down into natural substances once thrown out.
• With funding from TDB, the company targets a production capacity of 880 MT per annum, with an aim to provide compostable packaging solutions in the context of the nation’s need on phasing out non-compostable SUP.

About NIDHI Initiative

• DST has launched the National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations’ (NIDHI) programme to strengthen the innovation value chain through Technology Business Incubators (TBIs).
• NIDHI provides much-needed support to innovators and entrepreneurs at different stages of their journey to take their innovative ideas to market and further scale up its operations.
• The DST-NIDHI program aims to provide state-of-the art infrastructure for nurturing startups along with mentoring and funding support during pre-incubation, incubation and post incubation periods through startups incubators.
o These incubators support startups in various technology domains like agritech, manufacturing, electronics, IoT, health-tech, biotech, AI/ML, deep-tech etc.
• Implementation
o While NSTEDB(National Science & Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board) is the funding agency, the NIDHI programmes are implemented through Technology Business Incubators (TBIs) available around the country.

About NIDHI-PRAYAS Program

• Under the NIDHI initiative, DST has launched the NIDHI- Promoting and Accelerating Young and ASpiring innovators & startups (NIDHI-PRAYAS) program.
• The program caters to idea-stage entrepreneurs with a physical product offering, who require support for prototyping.
• It would also facilitate the innovators with the Physical infrastructure, Technical Guidance, Business Mentorship etc.
• Objectives of PRAYAS Prototyping Grant
o Enable translation of an innovative idea to a prototype.
o Provide a platform for faster experimentation and modify approaches in the idea to market journey.
o Generate innovative solutions relevant to local and global problems.
o Attract a large number of youth who demonstrates problem solving zeal and abilities
o A pre-incubation program or pipeline activity leading to startup incubation. Ideal end point is venture creation and development.

Super Vasuki

GS Paper 3: Mobilisation of resources, Growth and Development, Developments in Science and Technology
Important for
Prelims exam: Super Vasuki
Why in news
The Railways conducted a test run of its longest freight train, Super Vasuki, with 295 loaded wagons carrying over 27,000 tonnes of coal, on August 15, as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav celebrations.

About Super Vasuki

• To mark the beginning of Amrit Kaal, South East Central Railway (SECR) formed and ran SUPER VASUKI, five-loaded train long haul on 15th Aug 2022 as a part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav Celebration.
• The 3.5¬km long freight train covered the distance of about 267 km between Korba in Chhattisgarh and Rajnandgaon in Nagpur.
• This is the longest and heaviest freight train ever run by the Railways and the train takes about four minutes to cross a station.
• The amount of coal carried by Super Vasuki is enough to fire 3,000 MW of power plant for one full day.
• This is three times the capacity of existing railway rakes (90 cars with 100 tonnes in each) that carry about 9,000 tonnes of coal in one journey.
• The Railways is planning to use this arrangement (longer freight trains) more frequently, especially to transport coal in peak demand season to prevent fuel shortages of power stations.

Personality in news

Subhadra Kumari Chauhan

• Subhadra Kumari Chauhan was born on August 16, 1904.
• While she was in the growing stage of her life, India was at an important stage in its freedom struggle. This had an impact on her life too.
• She joined Mahatma Gandhi’s Non-Cooperation Movement.
• She was the 1st woman Satyagrahi to court arrest in Nagpur and was jailed twice for involvement in protests against British Rule in 1923 and 1942.
• She used her words to thread emotions and awaken the spirit of nationality in the hearts and lives of people.
• Subhadra Kumari Chauhan contributed to the world of literature and the freedom struggle, both.
• The fearless Chauhan also stood against many outdated practices and vigorously came forward for the rights of women.
o She had such a strong stand that she never kept a veil in her in-laws’ house.
Life as a literary
• Subhadra Kumari Chauhan wrote her first poem at the tender age of nine which centered around the neem tree.
• Her most famous poem is “Jhansi Ki Rani” which paints the picture of Rani Laxmibai, as we know her today.
• Her other famous compositions include “Yeh Kadam Ka Ped”, “Veero ka Kaisa ho Basant”, “Rakhi Ki Chunauti”, “Jallianwala Bagh mein Vasant” among several others.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

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