1. Murali Vijay announced his retirement from all forms of international cricket.
- India opener Murali Vijay announced his retirement from all forms of international cricket.
- He played his last match in December 2018 during the Border-Gavaskar Test series against Australia.
- He played in 61 Tests, 17 ODIs and nine T20Is for India during his international career.
- He scored 3982 runs in Tests, 339 runs in ODIs and 169 runs in T20Is.
- He also played 135 first-class and 94 List A cricket matches for Tamil Nadu.
Topic: National News
2. FSSAI is planning to tighten labelling norms of packaged foods.
- FSSAI is in talks with companies to include a “cautionary warning” in the front labelling of packaged foods.
- The “cautionary warning” will give information about the amount of salt, sugar and fat in the product.
- FSSAI has also proposed a star rating system to help customers in choosing the product.
- FSSAI is planning to frame rules for front-of pack nutrition labelling (FOPL) of packaged foods.
- FOPL is the most debated regulation for food packaging, which has been in consultation stages for several years.
- Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI):
- It was established in September 2008 under Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.
- It is a statutory body. It is headquartered in New Delhi.
- Rajesh Bhushan is its current chairperson.
Topic: National Appointment
3. Air Marshal AP Singh will assume charge as the new Vice Chief of the Indian Air Force.
- He will take over for Air Marshal Sandeep Singh, who will retire on January 31.
- On February 1, he will take over as vice chief.
- He is currently serving as the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Central Air Command.
- For his "distinguished" services, Singh was given the "Ati Vishisht Seva Medal" by the President of India on Republic Day in 2019.
- Singh also headed the MiG 29 Upgrade Project Management Team in Moscow, Russia.
Topic: Banking System
4. NSE has become world's largest derivatives exchange for fourth consecutive year.
- The National Stock Exchange (NSE) has once again emerged as the world's largest derivatives exchange in 2022 in terms of the number of contracts traded.
- The Futures Industry Association (FIA) has released the data.
- This is the fourth year in a row that NSE has secured the top position.
- Additionally, according to data from the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE), NSE ranked third in terms of the number of trades (electronic order book) in the equity segment in 2022.
- Last year, NSE was ranked fourth in this segment.
- The benchmark equity index, Nifty 50, touched an all-time high of 18,887.60 in the calendar year.
- In the equity segment, the daily-average turnover of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) stood at ₹470 crore in calendar 2022, a growth of 51% year-on-year.
- The daily average turnover of Sovereign Gold Bonds in the secondary market was ₹7 crores in CY2022, a growth of 59% year-on-year.
5. A two-day symposium on the Quantum Computing Ecosystem organised by C-DAC in Pune.
- The Minister of State for Electronics & Information Technology and Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar, inaugurated this two-day symposium.
- Chandrasekhar stated that Quantum Computing will be at the core of growth and expansion in India’s Techade.
- He also said that it is the vision of PM Modi to create an India centric quantum tech ecosystem with partners from across the globe.
- The term 'techade' is used to refer to the decade of new technology.
- The aim of the symposium is to project India's capabilities in quantum computing.
- It aims to explore the technologies, systems and subsystems which make up the building blocks of quantum computers and bring about a synergy among key stakeholders to build a commercial scale Quantum Computer.
6. Graham Reid resigned as chief coach of the Indian men's hockey team.
- On 30 January, he resigned from his position after an India outing at the just-concluded World Cup.
- In April 2019, Reid was appointed India's coach. He led the team to a historic bronze medal win at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.
- The 58-year-old Australian has submitted his resignation to Hockey India president Dilip Tirkey. His tenure was till next year's Paris Olympics.
- The Indian hockey team finished ninth, along with Argentina in the 2023 FIH Men's World Cup held in Odisha.
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Topic: International Appointments
7. Petr Pavel becomes the new President of the Czech Republic.
- Pavel has won the Presidential elections of the Czech Republic. Pavel got more than 58% of the vote.
- Pavel defeated Andrej Babis. Pavel will replace President Milos Zeman. President Milos Zeman’s second term ends in March.
- Pavel is a former chairman of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) military committee.
- Pavel has been a supporter of the European Union and NATO.
- Czech Republic:
- It is a landlocked country in central Europe. It is historically known as Bohemia.
- It is bordered by Austria to the South, Germany to the west, Slovakia to the southeast and Poland to the northeast.
- Prague is its capital. Its government is a unitary parliamentary republic. Petr Fiala is its current Prime Minister.
Topic: Awards and Prizes
8. The best tableaux and marching contingents of the Republic Day Parade 2023 have been declared.
- A panel of judges has adjudged Uttarakhand (Manaskhand) as the best State/UT tableau.
- Maharashtra (Sade Tin Shaktipithe & Nari Shakti) and Uttar Pradesh (Ayodhya Deepotsav) have been adjudged as the second and third best tableau among States/UTs by the panel of judges.
- Gujarat (Clean-Green energy efficient Gujarat) has won the online public poll carried out by MyGov.
- The tableau of Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra stood in second and third place respectively in the online poll.
- The panel of judges has adjudged the tableau of the Ministry of Tribal Affairs (Eklavya Model Residential Schools) as the best among Ministries/Departments.
- Ministry of Home Affairs (CAPF) has achieved the top position in the popular choice category.
- The panel has selected the Punjab Regiment Centre Contingent as best Marching Contingent among the three services. Indian Air Force contingent has won the online poll.
- CRPF has been named the best Marching Contingent among CAPF/other auxiliary forces in both categories.
- Central Public Works Department (Biodiversity Conservation) and ‘Vande Bharatam’ Dance Group have won a Special Prize.
- An online poll was conducted by MyGov for the citizens to vote for their favourite Tableaux.
- In Gujarat’s tableau, Kutchi embroidery, traditional 'bhungas' and renewable energy production were the main elements. It showcased the village of Modhera.
- Modhera is famous for its Sun temple. It is also famous for being India's first round-the-clock solar-powered village.
- Bhungas are traditional houses found in Kutch region in Gujarat.
9. IMF retained India’s growth projection of 6.1% for 2023.
- According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Indian economy is expected to grow by 6.1% in 2023 and 6.8% in 2024.
- The growth of the Indian economy is set to decline from 6.8% in 2022 to 6.1% in 2023.
- IMF predicted that the global growth rate would fall from 3.4% in 2022 to 2.9% in 2023, then rise to 3.1% in 2024.
- IMF’s World Economic Outlook update said that the Asian economy will grow by 5.3% and 5.2% in 2023 and 2024 respectively.
- The Chinese economy is projected to grow by 5.2% in 2023, which represents rapidly improving mobility. It will fall to 4.5% in 2024.
- The economy of the United States will slow down to 1.4% in 2023 due to a hike in the Federal Reserve interest-rate.
- Emerging markets and developing economies will grow by 4% in 2023 and 4.2% in 2024.
- IMF predicted that global inflation would decrease to 6.6% in 2023 from 8.8% in 2022.
- Russia-Ukraine war escalation, tighter global financing conditions and severe health outcomes in China could increase global inflation and hold back the recovery of many economies of the world.
10. Coal India Ltd to launch M-Sand Projects.
- The subsidiaries of Coal India Ltd will set up five M-Sand Plants by 2024.
- Sand Mining Framework (2018) envisages alternative sources of sand in the form of Manufactured Sand (M-Sand) from crushed rock fines (crusher dust), sand from Overburden (OB) of coal mines.
- During monsoon season, the Government impose ban on sand mining to protect rivers. M-Sand can be used as an alternative of sand.
- Coal India Limited (CIL) envisaged processing overburden rocks for production of sand in mines.
- The benefits of M-Sand are given below:
- Cost-effectiveness: M-Sand is more cost-effective than natural sand.
- Consistency: It has a consistent size and shape, which can be beneficial for construction projects.
- Environmental benefits: The use of M-Sand can reduce the need of mining natural sand. The mining of natural sand can have negative environmental impacts.
- Reduced water consumption: Manufactured sand reduces the use of the amount of water required for construction projects.
- Better workability: Manufactured sand is more angular and has a rougher surface, which makes it more workable for construction projects.
11. First meeting of the G-20 International Financial Architecture Working Group held in Chandigarh.
- On 30-31 January, the first G20 International Financial Architecture Working Group (IFAWG) meeting under the India's G20 Presidency is being organized.
- The Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, and the Minister of Food Processing Industries, Shri Pashupati Kumar Paras, inaugurated the meeting.
- The IFAWG is one of the important workstreams under the G20 finance track, with a focus on strengthening the international financial architecture.
- It also aims to deal with the many challenges faced by vulnerable countries.
- The meeting will discuss ways to enhance the stability and cohesion of the international financial structure.
- There will also be talks on exploring opportunities to provide more and more aid to poor and vulnerable countries.
- The deliberations during the two-day meeting will be jointly moderated by the Ministry of Finance and the RBI along with France and Korea, which are co-chairs of the IFAWG.
- An event titled ‘Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs): Opportunities and Challenges’ also organized during this meeting on 30 January 2023.
- On 24-25 February 2023, the first meeting of G20 finance ministers and central bank governors is scheduled to be held in Bengaluru.
(Source: News on Air)
12. Nikhat Zareen has been appointed as the ambassador of the NMDC.
- NMDC, the nation's largest miner and producer of iron ore, has signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with Nikhat Zareen to represent as its brand ambassador.
- Nikhat Zareen is World Boxing Champion and gold medal winner of Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
- Nikhat Zareen represents the strength, courage, agility and national pride associated with the brand NMDC.
- National Mineral Development Corporation Ltd. (NMDC):
- NMDC is country’s largest Iron Ore producer.
- It is a Central Public Sector Enterprise under Ministry of Steel. It is headquartered in Hyderabad.
- It is India's largest iron ore producer and exporter, with three automated mines in Chhattisgarh and Karnataka generating more than 35 million tonnes of iron ore.
- It also operates India's only mechanized diamond mine at Panna in Madhya Pradesh.
(Source: News on Air)
Topic: Infrastructure and Energy
13. India's first green energy based solar panel factory will be built by Luminous in Uttarakhand.
- Rudrapur based new manufacturing plant is expected to be fully operational by the end of 2023.
- The cutting-edge factory will be equipped with latest technology to design and manufacture high-quality solar panels for both residential and commercial uses.
- Once operational, the 4.5 lakh square feet/10-acre factory would help enable a solar production capacity of 500 MW per year, extendable up to 1 GW.
- The Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) has certified the plant as a green factory, and will substantially reduce concerns around CO2 emissions with an estimated reduction of over 70 million tonnes per annum.
- This solar panel plant is fully robotic and will run entirely on solar energy.
- The factory's annual production capacity will be equivalent to the carbon sequestration of planting one million trees, making a major contribution to reducing CO2 emissions.
Topic: National News
14. 31st Foundation Day event of National Commission for Women will be addressed by President of India.
- On January 31, President Smt Draupadi Murmu will address the 31st Foundation Day program of the National Commission for Women in Delhi.
- The theme of the program is ‘Sashakt Nari Sashakt Bharat’, with an aim to recognize the success of women who have excelled in their journey of life and left an indelible mark.
- A two-day event is being organised from January 31 to February 1, 2023, to celebrate the 31st Foundation Day.
- In January 1992, the National Commission for Women was established as a statutory body under the National Commission for Women Act, 1990.
- It was established to look into matters affecting women, review constitutional and legal safeguards for women, recommend remedial legislative measures, redress or facilitate grievances, and advise the government on policy.
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