Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 23 February 2021

Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 23 February 2021


Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

  • Union Health Minister announced that India has become the first country in the world to identify the need for action for Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. 
  • He said, the abnormal accumulation of fat in the liver in the absence of secondary causes of fatty liver is a serious health concern as it encompasses a spectrum of liver abnormalities. 
  • He has also said, the vision of the Government is to move from diagnostic cure to preventive health.

Panchagangavali Kandla forests to get ‘biodiversity hotspot’ tag

  • The Karnataka Biodiversity Board will soon pass a resolution to declare the expansive Kandla Forests in the Panchagangavali Estuary in Kundapur taluk, Udupi district as a biodiversity hotspot.
  • The biodiversity hotspot tag would enhance protection and conservation efforts.
  • Kandla is the local name for long stretch of dense and tall mangrove vegetation along Karnataka coast.
  • "Biodiversity hotspot" is a biogeographic region characterized both by exceptional levels of plant endemism and by serious levels of habitat loss.


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Dutch Indian Water Alliance for Leadership Initiative 

  • A platform called DIWALI has been developed to find solutions for water related challenges in which India and Netherlands could participate for designing solution for water challenges.


  • The expert consortium from the two counties would be the potential and sustainability of investigating Dutch solutions to solve the challenges. At certain water-stressful locations in India, which are scalable, sustainable and affordable. 
  • It is guided by Dutch consortia titled Water for Change.
  • Integrative and Fit-for-Purpose Water Sensitive Design Framework for Fast Growing Livable Cities” andIIT Roorkee as lead along with other consortia member named MANIT, Bhopal; CEPT University, Ahmedabad; IIT Gandhinagar; CWRDM, Calicut.

International MotherLanguage Day

  • It is observed every year to promote linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism.
  • International Mother Language Daywas proclaimed by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1999 and has been observed throughout the world since 2000.
  • The idea to celebrate IMLD was the initiative of Bangladesh.
  • This year's theme is Fostering multilingualism for inclusion in education and society.
  • It also contributes to United Nations International Decade of Indigenous Languages (2022-2032).


SFURTI clusters

  • Union Minister for MSME & Road Transport & Highways inaugurated 50 artisan-based SFURTI clusters, spread over 18 States. 

Key highlights:

  • In the 50 clusters inaugurated, over 42,000 artisans have been supported in the traditional segments of muslin, khadi, coir, handicraft, handlooms, wood craft, leather, pottery, carpet weaving, bamboo, agro processing, tea, etc.  
  • The Ministry of MSME, Govt. of India has funded an amount of around Rs.85 crore for development of these 50 clusters. 
  • The Ministry of MSME is implementing a Scheme of Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries (SFURTI) with a view to organize traditional industries and artisans into clusters to make them competitive and increase their income.
  • SFURTI clusters are of two types i.e., Regular Cluster (500 artisans) with Government assistance of up to Rs.2.5 crore and Major Cluster (more than 500 artisans) with Government assistance up to Rs.5 crore. 
  • The artisans are organized into SPVs which can be (i) a Society registered under Societies (Registration) Act, 1860, (ii) a Co-operative Society under an appropriate statute, (iii) a Producer Company under Section 465 (1) of Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013), (iv) a Section 8 Company under the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013) or (v) a Trust.


Devasthal telescope 

  • Devasthal is a picturesque mountain peak in Uttarakhand.
  • It was set up in year 2016 by Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES), an autonomous research institute of DST with support from Belgian government and established India’s role as a global player in astronomy research and is facilitating strong future collaborations with national, international institutions and industries.
  • The snow capped Himalayas is clearly visible and the nearest settlement is 8 Km away.
  • The world-class 3.6 meter optical telescope set up at the place has assumed global importance for observing a number of time-critical cosmic explosive events such as Gamma Ray Bursts and Supernovae. 
  • It is the Asia’s largest fully steerable optical telescope, an international facility for and people from different parts of the world compete for observation and machine time by submitting research proposals.


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