Daily Current Affairs for 23th February 2023

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Jaadui Pitara

Why in News?

  • Recently, Union Education Minister launched an innovative learning material for foundational years of children called “Jaadui Pitara”.

About ‘Jaadui Pitara’

  • The ‘Jaadui Pitara’ or ‘Magic Collection is a play-based learning material for children in the age group of 3 to 8 years.
  • It has been designed on the motto of “learning through play’”, as envisaged in the new National Education Policy (NEP).
  • Toys, puzzles, puppetry, posters, flash cards, worksheets and attractive storybooks are part of the “Jaadui Pitara” launched by the Ministry of Education for learning at the foundational stage.
  • It is designed to pique curiosity and accommodate the diverse needs of learners at the foundational stage.
  • Jaadui Pitara has been developed under the curricular goals of National Curriculum Framework for Foundational Stage (NCF-FS) as recommended by the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
  • The resources on ‘Jaadui Pitara’ will be digitally available on DIKSHA platform, portal and mobile application.
  • The pitara is available in 13 Indian languages.

What are the key features of Jadui Pitara?

  • It applies to Class 1 & 2 also (age 6-8).
  • It is available in 13 Indian languages.
  • It comprises of playbooks, toys, puzzles, posters, story books etc. as well as reflecting local culture, social context and languages.

What is the National Curriculum Framework for Foundational Stage (NCF-FS)?

  • It is one of the four National Curriculum Frameworks (NCFs).
  • In India, it is first-ever integrated Curriculum Framework for children between ages 3-8.
  • It is a direct outcome of the 5+3+3+4 ‘curricular and pedagogical’ structure that NEP 2020 has recommended for School Education.
  • NCF-FS has been developed by NCERT through an extensive consultative process with States & Union Territories up to grass root level and various institutions and organizations.
  • Learning and Development in several domains including Physical Development, Socio-emotional and Ethical Development, Cognitive Development etc.

What is the importance of Foundational stage learning?

  • Brain development is most rapid in the first eight years of a child’s life.
  • It lays the foundation for life-long learning and development.
  • Quality education in early stage helps to promote long-term economic growth of the nation.

GS Paper III News

Vostro accounts

Why in News?

  • 20 Russian banks have opened Special Rupee Vostro Accounts (SRVA) with Indian associate banks to resolve rupee payments for commerce between India and Russia.
  • Furthermore, all main domestic banks have designated nodal officials to resolve issues encountered by exporters under the plan.


  • In July 2022, the RBI revealed a method to settle international transactions in rupee to promote global trade development, with a focus on Indian exports, as well as to promote the rupee as an international currency.
  • It is also anticipated to allow commerce with sanctioned countries like Russia.
  • Banks from partner nations can contact approved dealer banks in India to establish special rupee vostro accounts, according to the procedure agreed by the RBI. The approved dealer bank must then obtain central bank permission for the specifics of such an arrangement.

What are Special Rupee Vostro Accounts arrangements?

About Vostro account

  • A vostro account is an account that domestic banks hold for foreign banks in the former’s domestic currency, in this case, the rupee.
  • Domestic banks use it to provide international banking services to their clients who have global banking needs.
  • The SRVA is an additional arrangement to the existing system that uses freely convertible currencies and works as a complimentary system.
  • The existing systems require maintaining balances and position in such currencies.

What is the framework?

  • The framework entails three important components, namely, invoicing, exchange rate and settlement.
  • Invoicing entails that all exports and imports must be denominated and invoiced in INR.
  • The exchange rate between the currencies of the trading partner countries would be market-determined.
  • The final settlement takes place in Indian National Rupee (INR).

How does it function?

  • The authorized domestic dealer banks (those authorized to deal in foreign currencies) are required to open SRVA accounts for correspondent banks of the partner trading country.
  • Domestic importers are required to make payment (in INR) into the SRVA account of the correspondent bank against the invoices for supply of goods or services from the overseas seller/supplier.
  • Similarly, domestic exporters are to be paid the export proceeds (in INR) from the balances in the designated account of the correspondent bank of the partner country.
  • Through the above-mentioned Rupee Payment Mechanism, Indian exporters may obtain advance payment in Indian rupees from foreign buyers for shipments.
  • However, it would be the responsibility of the domestic bank to accord foremost priority to ensuring that the available funds are used to meet existing payment obligations, that is, from the already executed export orders or export payments in the pipeline.
  • All reporting of cross-border transactions are to be done in accordance with the extant guidelines under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), 1999.

What is the eligibility criteria of banks?

  • Banks from partner countries are required to approach an authorized domestic dealer bank for opening the SRVA. The domestic bank would then seek approval from the apex banking regulator providing details of the arrangement.
  • Domestic institutions are accountable for ensuring that the correspondent bank is not from a nation on the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) roster of High Risk & Non-Cooperative jurisdictions.
  • Authorized banks can open multiple SRV accounts for different banks from the same country.

What is the purpose of the Arrangement?

  • Reduce Demand of Forex: The Economic Survey (2022-23) had argued that the framework could largely reduce the “net demand for foreign exchange, the U.S. dollar in particular, for the settlement of current account related trade flows”.
  • It will prevent the currency from falling further as demand for cash falls.
  • Reduced Exposure to External Shocks: Reducing the country’s reliance on foreign currencies would make it less susceptible to external shocks.
  • Indian Rupee as a Foreign Currency: Once the rupee settlement mechanism gets momentum, it will support the rupee as a foreign currency in the long run.
  • As per the Bureau for International (BIS) Settlements’ Triennial Central Bank Survey 2022, the U.S. dollar was the most dominant vehicle currency accounting for 88% of all trades. The INR accounted for 1.6%.
  • Trade with Sanctioned Countries:
  • Since sanctions were imposed on Russia, trade with the nation has been virtually halted due to payment issues.
  • We are seeing a reduction in payment problems with Russia as a consequence of the RBI’s trade facilitation system.
What Is a Nostro Account?

  • A nostro account refers to an account that a bank holds in a foreign currency in another bank.
  • Nostros, a term derived from the Latin word for “ours,” are frequently used to facilitate foreign exchange and trade transactions.
  • The opposite term “vostro accounts,” derived from the Latin word for “yours,” is how a bank refers to the accounts that other banks have on its books in its home currency.

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