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Current Affairs 19th May 2023 for UPSC Prelims Exam

Current Affairs 19th May 2023 for UPSC Prelims Exam

Kiru Hydro-Electric Power Project

Context: The CBI is conducting investigations regarding allegations of corruption in Kiru hydro-electric power project in Jammu and Kashmir.

About Kiru hydro-electric project:

  • Kiru is a run-of-river project proposed on Chenab River in district of Kishtwar of Union Territory of J&K.
  • The project includes construction of 135 m high concrete gravity Dam and an underground Powerhouse with 4 units of 156 MW each.
  • The project will be implemented by Chenab Valley Power Projects Limited, which is a joint venture of the National Hydropower Company and Jammu and Kashmir State Power Development Corporation (JKSPDC).

Chenab River:

  • Chenab is one of the rivers of Indus River basin. It is formed by the union of Chandra and Bhaga in Himachal Pradesh.
  • It flows into Jammu and Kashmir before entering Pakistan. Chenab empties into the Sutlej, forming the Panjnad river, which then joins the Indus.
  • The world’s highest rail bridge has been constructed over the Chenab River.
  • Historical aspects:
    • Chenab was known as Askini (dark-coloured waters) in Rig Veda. In Atharva Veda it was known as Krishana.
    • During Mahabharata, the river was called Chandrabhaga. Greeks Hellenized Chandrabhaga in various forms such Snadrophagos, Sandabaga and Cantabra.
    • It gained the name Chenab due to Persian influence.
  • Major projects: Bagliar project, Salal dam, Ratle project, Dul Hasti project, Kishtawar project and Kiru project are some of hydroelectric projects on the Chenab River.
  • Control:
    • The Chenab River is considered a western river under Indus Waters Treaty, with its waters being assigned largely to Pakistan.
    • However, India has been given the right to generate hydroelectricity through run-of-the-river projects on these western rivers.
Kiru Hydro-Electric Power Project
Kiru Hydro-Electric Power Project

Current Affairs 18th May 2023 for UPSC Prelims Exam



Context:  The 49th G7 Summit is being hosted by Japan in Hiroshima.

About G7:

  • G7: The G7 is an informal group of leading industrialized nations.
  • Objective: G7 meets annually to discuss issues of global economic governance, international security, and energy policy.
  •  Members:  Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States.
    • The European Union has participated fully in the G7 since 1981 as a “nonenumerated” member.
    • Russia joined to form the G-8 in 1998 but was expelled after Moscow’s 2014 annexation of Crimea.
  • History: The first summit was held in France in 1975.
    • The United States, France, Italy, Japan, the UK, and West Germany formed the Group of Six in 1975 for noncommunist powers to address pressing economic concerns like inflation and oil crisis.
    • In 1976 Canada joined the group, which came to be known as the G7.
  • Presidency: The presidency of G-7 summits revolves among the seven members. Two representatives of the European Union also join.
  • Secretariat: The G7 does not have a formal charter or a secretariat.
  • GDP: The GDP of G7 member states makes up about 44% of the global economy in nominal terms, down from nearly 70% three decades ago.
G7 Summit
G7 Summit

49th G7 Summit

  • Japan is hosting the G7 Summit in Hiroshima. The choice of Hiroshima as venue underscores Japan’s determination to put nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation as a top agenda in the summit.
    • On August 6, 1945, the US had dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan.
  • The leaders of Australia, Brazil, Comoros, Cook Islands, India, Indonesia, South Korea and Vietnam are invited in the Summit.
  • The broad agenda of the G7 meeting will be nuclear disarmament, economic resilience, Russia- Ukraine War, economic security, regional issues, climate change, energy security, food and health.


Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM)

Context: The Orissa High Court has directed the State government to ensure absence of Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) children and reduction of Moderate Acute Malnutrition (MAM) children by the end of 2023.

Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM)

  • Definition: The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines ‘severe acute malnutrition’ by very low weight-for-height or a mid-upper arm circumference less than 115 mm, or by the presence of nutritional oedema.
  • Causes: SAM is both a medical and social disorder.
    • Lack of exclusive breast feeding, late introduction of complementary feeds, feeding diluted feeds containing less amount of nutrients, respiratory tract infections and poverty are some factors responsible for SAM.
  • Problems: SAM significantly increases the risk of death in children under five years of age.
    • The SAM children are in the red zone with a higher risk of contracting secondary infection due to lack of nutrients. Those who survive may go on to suffer poor growth and development and fail to thrive.
    • Children with SAM are nine times more likely to die as compared to healthy children.
  • Related Findings: As per a report by UNICEF, India has world’s highest number of children with severe acute malnutrition.
    • As per the Global Hunger Index and the National Family Health Survey (NFHS)-5 (2019–2021):
      •  India is on place 67 among the 80 nations having the worst hunger situation.
      •  25% of all hungry people worldwide live in India.
      •  7.7% children below 5 years are severely wasted.
      •  35.5% are stunted and 19.3% are wasted (under 5 years) in the country.
      •  Assam’s Karimganj district reported the highest increase (24.4%) and most critical level (30.5%) of SAM.
      • Other districts with critical and increased levels of SAM are Dang (22.2%), Gujarat; Sheohar (21.4%), Bihar; Saraikela Kharsawan (23%), Jharkhand; Chandrapur (21.8%) and Nagpur (20%), Maharashtra; and Panchmahal (19.4%), Gujarat.

Govt Schemes for Addressing Malnutrition: 

  • Government has advised States/UTs to launch a drive for identification of SAM children for referral to hospitals (if required) and AYUSH centres.
  • States/UTs have been advised to promote use of AYUSH systems for prevention of malnutrition and related diseases.
  • Under Poshan 2.0, focus is on diet diversity, food fortification, leveraging traditional systems of knowledge and popularizing use of millets.
    • Nutrition awareness strategies under Poshan 2.0 aim to develop sustainable health and well-being through regional meal plans to bridge dietary gaps. 
  • Dietary diversification in the Anganwadi platform encourages the consumption of micronutrient rich foods, viz., dark green leafy vegetables, lentils and vitamin C rich fruits.
  • States/UTs have been advised to use fortified foods ingredients e.g., Fortified Wheat Flour, Fortified Rice, Double Fortified Salt and Fortified Edible Oil, under the Supplementary Nutrition Programme.
  • Greater emphasis is being given on the use of millets for preparation of Hot Cooked Meal and Take-Home rations at Anganwadis for Pregnant Women, Lactating mothers and children below 6 years of age.

Related Terms

  • Moderate Acute Malnutrition (MAM): The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines ‘Moderate Acute Malnutrition’ by low weight-for-height or a mid-upper arm circumference between 115 millimeters and 125 millimeters. MAM children are under yellow zone.
  • Global Acute Malnutrition (GAM):  It is the presence of both MAM and SAM in a population.  A GAM value of more than 10 percent indicates an emergency.


UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR)

Context: Recent report said that India is not allowing exit permissions for Rohingya refugees who have completed refugee status determinations with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

About UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

  • UNHCR was established in 1950, to deal with the post-World War II refugee situation.
  • UNHCR is also known as the UN Refugee Agency.
    • It is a global organization dedicated to saving lives and protecting the rights of refugees.
  • UN Refugee Agency is governed by the UN General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
  • The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is an organization tasked with leading and coordinating international action to protect refugees and address refugee issues across the world.
  • It is headquartered at Geneva, Switzerland.

About 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol.

  • It set the parameters and rules for the agency’s operations, which at first concentrated on Europeans uprooted by the conflict.
  • 149 States have ratified one or both, defining the term “refugee” and establishing the rights of those who have fled their countries as well as the obligation of governments to safeguard them.


National Ayush Mission

Recently, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare delivered Inaugural Address at National Ayush Mission Conclave.

About National Ayush Mission

  • Aim: To enhance the availability, accessibility, and quality of Ayush healthcare services throughout India.
    • By integrating traditional medicine systems (Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy collectively known as Ayush) with modern healthcare practices, the mission aims to promote holistic well-being and address the diverse healthcare needs of the population.
  • Mandatory Components:
    • AYUSH Services
    • AYUSH Educational Institutions
    • Quality Control of ASU &H Drugs
    • Medicinal Plants
  • Objectives: Preservation and promotion of India’s traditional systems of medicine.
    • Integration of Ayush healthcare into the mainstream healthcare system.
    • Enhancing the availability and accessibility of Ayush healthcare services.
    • Improving the quality of Ayush healthcare through capacity building and upgradation of Ayush Health Wellness Centers (AHWCs).
    • Strengthening the education ecosystem in Ayush to support public health initiatives.
    • Facilitating research and ensuring quality assurance in Ayush public healthcare.
  • Goal: Establish Ayush Health Wellness Centers (AHWCs) across the country, in alignment with the Ayushman Bharat scheme.
    • These centers will provide accessible and quality healthcare services, including consultations, therapies, and medicines, based on traditional systems of medicine.
  • Funding: It operates as a centrally sponsored scheme, with support from the Union Government.
    • For special Category states- Grant-in-aid component will be 90% from Govt. of India and remaining 10% is proposed to be the State contribution.
    • For other States/UTs the sharing pattern will be 75%:25%.
National Ayush Mission
National Ayush Mission



Context: ASTR has helped the Department of Telecommunication to detect 40.87 lakh dubious mobile connections and block 36.61 lakh connections as of now.

  • According to DoT’s data, West Bengal had the largest number of SIMs disconnected (12,34,111), followed by Haryana (5,24,287), Bihar-including Jharkhand (3,27,246), Madhya Pradesh (2,28,072), and Uttar Pradesh-East (2,04,658).

About Artificial Intelligence and Facial Recognition powered Solution for Telecom SIM Subscriber Verification (ASTR)

  • It is an artificial intelligence and facial recognition-powered solution for telecom SIM subscriber verification.
  • It is developed by Department of Telecommunications (DoT).
  • ASTR used various techniques of facial recognition and data analytics.
  • The ASTR project was conceptualized and designed by the DoT’s unit in Haryana between April 2021 and July 2021.

Working of ASTR

  • Human faces in subscribers’ images are encoded using convolutional neural network (CNN) models to account for the tilt and angle of the face, opaqueness and dark colour of the images.
  • After that, a face comparison is carried out for each face against all faces in the database, and similar faces are grouped under one directory. Two faces are concluded to be identical by ASTR if they match to the extent of at least 97.5 per cent.
  • ASTR can detect all SIMs against a suspected face in less than 10 seconds from a database of 1 crore images.

Significance of ASTR

  • It can potentially bring down cyber frauds by detecting and blocking possible fraudulent mobile connections.
  • ASTR had detected as many as 6,800 connections against the same image of the subscriber.


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