Current Affairs- 16th September
Science and Technology
First all-civilian crew launched to orbit aboard SpaceX rocket ship
- A billionaire e-commerce executive and three less-wealthy private citizens chosen to join him blasted off from Florida on Wednesday aboard a SpaceX rocket ship and soared into orbit, the first all-civilian crew ever to circle the Earth from space.
- The quartet of amateur astronauts, led by the American founder and chief executive of financial services firm Shift 4 Payments Inc (FOUR.N), Jared Isaacman, lifted off just before sunset from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral.
Tata Steel commissions India’s first plant to capture CO2
- Tata Steel has commissioned a 5-tonne-per-day (TPD) carbon capture plant at its Jamshedpur Works, making it the country’s first steel company to adopt such a carbon capture technology that extracts carbon-di-oxide directly from blast furnace gas, the company said.
- Tata Steel will reuse the captured CO2 on-site to promote the circular carbon economy. The project has been executed with technological support from Carbon Clean, a global leader in low-cost CO2 capture technology.
- The carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) facility uses amine-based technology and makes the captured carbon available for onsite reuse.
Govt to organize e-Auction of gifts and mementos received by PM Modi
- Ministry of Culture is organizing e-Auction of gifts and mementos received by Prime Minister Narendra Modi from tomorrow. The memorabilia include sports gear and equipment of the medal winning Olympians and Paralympians, replica of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir, Chardham, Rudraksh Convention Centre, models, sculptures, paintings, angavastras among others.
- Persons or organizations can participate in the e-Auction through the website, pmmementos.gov.in from tomorrow till 7th of October. Proceeds from the e-Auction will go to the Namami Gange Mission aimed at conserving and rejuvenating the Ganga.
8th edition of Indian Army Chief’s Conclave to be organised
- The 8th edition of Indian Army Chief’s Conclave, a gathering of serving and former Chiefs of Army Staff of the Indian Army, will be organised at New Delhi from today.
- The highlight of the three day event will be the invite extended to former Chiefs of the Nepali Army, who were also Honorary Chiefs of the Indian Army. Defence Ministry said, the Conclave is a forum for exchange of ideas between the old guard and the current leadership of the Indian Army. It will involve discussions on the rapid transformation of the Indian Army, self-reliance through Atmanirbhar and Make in India initiatives in defence manufacturing and skilling of the Indian soldier to fight modern wars.
MoS for External Affairs signs agreement on labour mobility in Portugal
- Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakashi Lekhi during her Portugal’s visit signed an agreement on labour mobility, facilitating recruitment of Indian citizens to work. During her three-day visit to the European country, she had an in-depth review of the bilateral relations with her counterpart, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and Co-operation, Mr. Francisco Andre.
- This was followed by the signing of the milestone Bilateral Agreement on the Recruitment of Indian Citizens to Work in Portugal.
- Portugal is the first European country with which India has signed a dedicated agreement on labour mobility.
PM Modi to address 21st Meeting of SCO Council of Heads of State tomorrow
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi will virtually address the 21st Meeting of SCO Council of Heads of State tomorrow. External Affairs Ministry Spokesman Arindam Bagchi informed this during a media briefing in New Delhi today. The meeting is hosted by Tajikistan capital Dushanbe, where India will be represented by External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar.
- Mr. Bagchi said, having become a full member in 2017, India remains committed to playing a positive and constructive role at SCO.
- At the Summit, the leaders are expected to review the organization’s activities over the past two decades and discuss the state and prospects of future cooperation.
South Korea successfully tests submarine-launched ballistic missile
- South Korea has successfully completed an underwater test-launch of an indigenous submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) on Wednesday afternoon, South Korea’s Defense Ministry and Presidential Blue House announced. Hours earlier, North Korea fired two ballistic missiles into the East Sea – the second round within days.
- Speaking to officials at the test site, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said that South Korea’s upgrading of its missile capabilities can help deter North Korean provocation.
US, UK and Australia announce formation of AUKUS
- US, UK and Australia have announced the formation of AUKUS – a new trilateral security partnership for Indo-Pacific region. It was announced in a joint address by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison and US President Joe Biden with a vision for a safer and more secure Indo-Pacific.
- The Quad leaders – Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Japanese PM Yoshihide Suga, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and US President Joe Biden will meet at the White House on the 25th of this month. Both Quad and now AUKUS are more than likely to be seen as counterweights to China’s growing muscle-flexing in the Indo-Pacific region.
Days and Dates
International Day for the Preservation of Ozone layer: 16th September
- The International Day for the preservation for the Ozone layer also known as World Ozone Day is observed on September 16 every year to spread awareness of the depletion of the Ozone Layer and search for solutions to preserve it. The ozone layer is a fragile shield of gas that protects the Earth from the harmful portion of the rays of the sun and thus helping preserve life on the planet.
- The theme for 2021 World Ozone Day: ‘Montreal Protocol – keeping us, our food and vaccines cool.’
Other Important Affairs
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said new defence complexes stand for new India and will strengthen Army. Inaugurating the Defence Offices Complexes at Kasturba Gandhi Marg and Africa Avenue in New Delhi today, Mr Modi said, modern infrastructure played an equally important role by focusing on ease of living and ease of doing business.
- Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will chair the 45th Meeting of the Goods and Services Tax, GST Council in Lucknow on Friday.
- Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Anurag Singh Thakur on Thursday had a wide ranging and comprehensive discussion with Minister of Youth and Sports Affairs of Bahrain Aymen Tawfiq Almoayyed through video conferencing. Mr. Thakur said, India – Bahrain partnership in sports and youth cooperation is set to strengthen further.
- China has congratulated the new interim Taliban govt in Afghanistan in a major boost to the latter’s efforts to gain international recognition for its hardline government. Taliban spokesman Mohammad Naeem said in a tweet that China’s Ambassador in Kabul Wang Yu met acting Afghan Foreign Minister Mawlawi Amir Khan Muttaqi on Tuesday and “congratulated the new Afghan government”