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Important Current Affairs for CLAT-18th July 2023

International Moon Day 2023: Date, Significance and History

International Moon Day is an annual day dedicated to the Earth’s one and only natural satellite, the Moon!. It’s held every year on the 20th of July, which is the anniversary of the day on which astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin famously set foot on the Moon in 1969. The Moon landing is still considered one of humanity’s greatest achievements, and so International Moon Day is all about commemorating the Apollo 11 mission while teaching people about the Moon and astronomy.

Significance of International Moon Day

  • The General Assembly declared International Moon Day, a United Nations-designated international day to be observed annually on 20 July, in its resolution 76/76 on “International cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space” in 2021.

  • International Moon Day marks the anniversary of the first landing by humans on the Moon as part of the Apollo 11 lunar mission.

  • The celebrations will also consider the achievements of all States in the exploration of the Moon and raise public awareness of sustainable Moon exploration and utilization.

History of International Moon Day

  • American astronauts Neil Armstrong, and Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin became the first humans in history to land on the Moon on July 20, 1969. The grand Apollo 11 mission took place eight years after the national goal announcement by President John F. Kennedy to send a man to the moon by the end of the 1960s.

  • The idea for the mission to send astronauts to the moon started when President Kennedy appealed to a special joint session of Congress in 1961, stating “I believe this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to Earth.”

  • At the time of Kennedy’s proposal, the United States was still head-to-head with the Soviet Union in advancements in space exploration and, since it was during the time of the Cold War, the proposal was welcomed. The first unmanned Apollo mission was initiated by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA, after five years of effort and hard work by their international team of engineers and scientists. The first mission served as a testing phase for the structural resilience of the launch spacecraft vehicle.

  • At 9:32 A.M. on July 16, 1969, the whole world witnessed Apollo 11 take off from Kennedy Space Center with three astronauts on board. Neil Armstrong was the commander of the mission. The spacecraft entered the lunar orbit after three days, on July 19. The lunar module, Eagle, disengaged from the main command module the next day, manned by Armstrong and Aldrin. When Eagle touched the lunar surface, Armstrong radioed his historical message to Mission Control in Houston, Texas: “The Eagle has landed.”

  • At 10:39 P.M., Armstrong exited the lunar module and made his way down its ladder. His progress was being recorded by a television camera attached to the module, transmitting signals back to Earth, where the world was watching with bated breath.

  • At 10:56 P.M., Armstrong stepped on the moon’s powdery surface, and spoke his iconic words: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

PM MITRA Park launched in Amravati, Maharashtra

The Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC), the Maharashtra government, and the Indian Ministry of Textiles joined hands by signing a memorandum of understanding to establish the PM Mega Integrated Textile Regions and Apparel Park (PM MITRA Park) in Amravati,Maharashtra. The inauguration of the PM MITRA mega textile park took place with the aim of attracting an investment of ₹10,000 crore and creating 300,000 job opportunities.

Location and Infrastructure of the PM MITRA Park in Amravati

Occupying a contiguous land area of 1,020 acres in Nandgaon Peth, adjacent to the Additional Amravati Industrial Area (MIDC), the Park is conveniently located just 30 kilometers away from the Mumbai Nagpur Samruddhi Highway and 147 kilometers from the nearest port, the Wardha Dry Port. Being a brownfield park, it already possesses essential infrastructure such as roads, water supply, and electricity.

Government’s Initiative for PM MITRA Parks: Boosting Textile Industry in India

  • Earlier this year, the Government of India unveiled plans to establish 7 PM MITRA Parks across the country as designated sites for the textile industry. These parks aim to create top-notch industrial infrastructure that can attract substantial investments, including foreign direct investment (FDI), while fostering innovation and job creation within the sector.

  • Inspired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visionary 5F concept (Farm to Fibre to Factory to Fashion to Foreign), the PM MITRA Parks represent a significant stride towards realizing the government’s ambition of positioning India as a global hub for textile manufacturing and exports.

  • The establishment of these parks in Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Gujarat, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Maharashtra is expected to enhance the competitiveness of the textile industry, enabling economies of scale and enticing international players to manufacture in India.

These parks will provide exceptional infrastructure, plug-and-play facilities, as well as training and research resources tailored to the industry’s needs. The PM MITRA Parks introduce a unique model where the central and state governments collaborate to attract investments, drive innovation, create job opportunities, and ultimately establish India as a global leader in textile manufacturing and exports. It is estimated that these parks will attract investments of approximately Rs. 70,000 crores and generate employment for around 2 million people.

PM Modi inaugurates new integrated terminal building of Port Blair airport

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to virtually inaugurate the new integrated terminal building of Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair on July 18 at 10:30 am via video conferencing. The event will witness the presence of Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, Union Minister of State for Road, Transport and Highways and Civil Aviation, General (Retd.) V K Singh, and other senior officials attending the ceremony in person.

Key Facts About the New Integrated Terminal Building

  • The terminal was built at a cost of approximately Rs 710 crore and is a crucial step in enhancing connectivity for the island union territory.

  • Covering a total built-up area of around 40,800 sqm., the terminal has the capacity to handle about 50 lakh passengers annually.

  • An Apron capable of accommodating two Boeing-767-400 and two Airbus-321 types of aircraft has also been constructed at Port Blair airport, costing Rs 80 crore.

  • The architectural design of the terminal building features a shell-shaped structure, symbolizing the region’s deep connection with the sea and islands.

Sustainability Features for a Greener Future The new airport terminal building boasts several sustainability features, demonstrating a commitment to environmental responsibility:

  • Double Insulated Roofing System: This technology reduces heat gain, promoting energy efficiency and comfort within the terminal.

  • Skylights: Strategically placed skylights maximize the use of natural sunlight during the day, minimizing the need for artificial lighting inside the building.

  • LED Lighting: Energy-efficient LED lighting has been adopted to reduce overall energy consumption.

  • Low Heat Gain Glazing: The use of low heat gain glazing helps maintain a comfortable indoor temperature.

Eco-friendly Practices The terminal’s environmental focus extends beyond energy efficiency:

  • Rainwater Catchment: The terminal incorporates an underground water tank for rainwater catchment, contributing to water conservation efforts.

  • On-site Sewage Treatment Plant: With 100 percent of treated wastewater being reused for landscaping, the terminal promotes responsible water management.

  • Solar Power Plant: The installation of a 500 KW capacity solar power plant harnesses renewable energy sources.

Enhancing Tourism and Employment Opportunities As the primary gateway to the Andaman and Nicobar islands, Port Blair attracts a significant number of tourists. The new integrated terminal building’s spacious design is expected to boost air traffic and enhance tourism in the region. Additionally, the improved infrastructure is likely to create enhanced employment opportunities for the local community, contributing to the region’s economic growth. The inauguration of the new integrated terminal building is a momentous occasion for the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, signifying progress, development, and a commitment to environmental sustainability. The government’s investment in connectivity and infrastructure underscores its dedication to promoting the region’s cultural heritage and natural beauty while fostering economic prosperity for its people.

Nelson Mandela International Day 2023: Date, Theme, Significance and History

Nelson Mandela day is observed on July 18 every year. The United Nations (UN) had in 2009 declared July 18 as Nelson Mandela Day to honour Nelson Mandela, a South African anti-apartheid activist who served as the first President from 1994 to 1999. Mandela was the first black head of state and was the first elected President in a fully democratic election in South Africa. The Day will also enlighten his transitional steps to defeat multiracial democracy in South Africa. This article entitles the history and significance of this day authentically.

The day was first celebrated on July 18, 2010, the 92nd birthday of Mandela, to honour the achievements of the anti-apartheid leader. To mark the first celebration of Mandela Day, fundraising programs, art exhibitions and music concerts were organised.

Nelson Mandela International Day 2023

Theme for Nelson Mandela International Day 2023

With the theme Climate, Food & Solidarity, we are calling on our partners and the public to take action against climate change and create food-resilient environments in solidarity with communities across the world facing crisis due to climate change. This year, the call to action is, “It’s in your hands”.

Significance of Nelson Mandela International Day 2023

Nelson Mandela Day signifies the importance of serving humankind and working for those who cannot fight on their own. Mandela Day is a global call to action which celebrates the idea that each individual has the power to bring a change and make an impact on society. This day plays a significant role in honoring the legacy of Nelson Mandela, the former South African President. This day is also known as ‘46664 ’ and was originally launched to create awareness about HIV/AIDS.

46664 was a series of AIDS benefit concerts played in honour of Nelson Mandela by South African and foreign musicians between 2003 and 2008.

History of Nelson Mandela International Day

In November 2009, the UN General Assembly declared July 18 as ‘Nelson Mandela International Day to recognise the former South African President’s contribution to the culture of peace and freedom in society. He was not only the first democratically elected black president but also a man with colossal dreams to transform the world.

This day acknowledges his fight against poverty, gender inequality, racism, and the abolition of human rights. UN’s resolution A/RES/64/13 observes Mandela’s values and his lifelong dedication to the service of humanity.

Former Kerala CM Oommen Chandy passes away at 79

Oommen Chandy, the former Chief Minister of Kerala, passed away at the age of 79. He was a well-respected public figure and a prominent legislator, representing the Puthupally constituency in Kottayam district. Chandy held the office of Chief Minister twice during his political career.

Born on October 30, 1943, to Karottu Vallakalil K.V. Chandy and Baby Chandy, he entered politics through active participation in the Kerala Students Union (KSU) and the Youth Congress. His journey in politics saw him serving as the State general secretary of KSU in 1965 and later as its State in 1967. Chandy received his education at St. George High School in Kottayam and went on to study at CMS College, Kottayam, SB College Changanassery, and the Government Law College, Thiruvananthapuram.

Long Political Career of Oommen Chandy

  • Oommen Chandy led the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) governments in Kerala on two occasions: from August 31, 2004, to May 12, 2006, and from May 18, 2011, to May 20, 2016.

  • Throughout his extensive political career, he held various important positions, including serving as Labour Minister in 1977 in the K. Karunakaran Ministry and retaining the same portfolio in the succeeding cabinet led by A.K. Antony. He also served as the Home Minister in the K. Karunakaran cabinet from December 1981 to March 1982 and held the Finance portfolio in the UDF ministry of 1991.

  • Chandy’s political journey began as the president of the Youth Congress in 1970, and he was actively involved in the INTUC, the Congress-backed trade union. He was first elected to the Kerala Legislative Assembly in 1970. Notably, he also served as the convener of the UDF during two periods: 1982-86 and 2001-2004. Chandy assumed the position of Chief Minister in 2004 after A.K. Antony’s resignation and held the office for a second time in 2011. During 2006-2011, he served as the Opposition Leader.

  • Representing the Puthupally constituency for more than five decades, Chandy was a skilled politician who played a significant role in the internal ‘group’ dynamics within the state unit of the Congress. He enjoyed immense popularity among the masses and introduced the ‘Mass Contact’ program to address public issues during his tenure as Chief Minister. Additionally, he was presently serving as the general secretary of the All India Congress Committee (AICC).Oommen Chandy, the former Chief Minister of Kerala, passed away at the age of 79. He was a well-respected public figure and a prominent legislator, representing the Puthupally constituency in Kottayam district. Chandy held the office of Chief Minister twice during his political career.

Born on October 30, 1943, to Karottu Vallakalil K.V. Chandy and Baby Chandy, he entered politics through active participation in the Kerala Students Union (KSU) and the Youth Congress. His journey in politics saw him serving as the State general secretary of KSU in 1965 and later as its State in 1967. Chandy received his education at St. George High School in Kottayam and went on to study at CMS College, Kottayam, SB College Changanassery, and the Government Law College, Thiruvananthapuram.

Long Political Career of Oommen Chandy

  • Oommen Chandy led the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) governments in Kerala on two occasions: from August 31, 2004, to May 12, 2006, and from May 18, 2011, to May 20, 2016.

  • Throughout his extensive political career, he held various important positions, including serving as Labour Minister in 1977 in the K. Karunakaran Ministry and retaining the same portfolio in the succeeding cabinet led by A.K. Antony. He also served as the Home Minister in the K. Karunakaran cabinet from December 1981 to March 1982 and held the Finance portfolio in the UDF ministry of 1991.

  • Chandy’s political journey began as the president of the Youth Congress in 1970, and he was actively involved in the INTUC, the Congress-backed trade union. He was first elected to the Kerala Legislative Assembly in 1970. Notably, he also served as the convener of the UDF during two periods: 1982-86 and 2001-2004. Chandy assumed the position of Chief Minister in 2004 after A.K. Antony’s resignation and held the office for a second time in 2011. During 2006-2011, he served as the Opposition Leader.

  • Representing the Puthupally constituency for more than five decades, Chandy was a skilled politician who played a significant role in the internal ‘group’ dynamics within the state unit of the Congress. He enjoyed immense popularity among the masses and introduced the ‘Mass Contact’ program to address public issues during his tenure as Chief Minister. Additionally, he was presently serving as the general secretary of the All India Congress Committee (AICC).

China launched world’s first methane-fuelled space rocket

A private Chinese company launched the World’s first methane-fuelled space rocket into orbit named “Zhuque-2”.

Highlights of the News

The Zhuque-2 carrier rocket blasted off at 9:00A.M. (01:00 GMT) on 12th July from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in northwest China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous region and completed the flight mission according to the procedure.

  • China’s Zhuque-2 has become the World’s first methane propelled rocket to successfully fly into orbit.

  • This was Landscape’s second attempt after a launch failed in December.

  • This landmark achievement signifies a paradigm shift in the race towards cleaner, safe and reusable space travel technology.

  • Zhuque-2 achieved the expected trajectory and completed its flight according to plan.

  • The launch indicated significant progress in the development of the reusable rockets, as methane engines offers excellent performance with lower operational costs.

  • Landscape also became the second private Chinese company to launch a liquid-propellant rocket.

About the Zhueque-2:

  • The Zhuque-2 is a Chinese orbital class launching vehicle developed by Landscape.

  • It is liquid-fuelled rocket powered by liquid oxygen and liquid methane (methalox).

  • It is first methane-fuelled rocket to reach orbit.

  • Zhuque-2 has a liftoff weight of 216 metric tons and uses 4 TQ-12 methalox engines in the first stage with a thrust of 67 metric tonnes.

  • The second stage utilizes one optimized TQ-12 with a thrust of 80 metric tonnes in combination with an 8 metric tonnes thrust TQ-11 engine which acts as a vernier thruster.

  • Zhuque-2 has a capability of lifting 6,000 kg of payload into a 200 km low Earth orbit and 4,000 kg of payload into a 500 km Sun-synchronous orbit.

  • Zhuque-2 has also been launched on 14 December 2022 but it was a failure.

Process of launching of Zhueque-2:

One of the two planned rockets that will carry spacecraft will land on the moon’s surface and the other will transport the astronauts.

The twin-rocket plan would overcome China’s longstanding technological hurdle of developing a heavy-duty powerful enough to send both astronauts and a moon lander probe into space.

After Chinese astronauts have completed their scientific tasks and collected samples from the moon, the lander will transport the astronauts back to the orbiting spacecraft, on which they will return to Earth.

Razorpay launches first international payment gateway in Malaysia

India’s renowned fintech giant and leading Full-Stack Payments and Business Banking Platform, Razorpay, has made a significant announcement regarding its first-ever international Payment Gateway for the Malaysian market as it acquires Malaysian fintech start-up ‘Curlec‘ for $20 million, which has been rebranded as ‘Curlec by Razorpay‘. The introduction of the Curlec Payment Gateway aims to bridge the gap between local and international payment gateways, while also addressing the unique digital payment challenges prevalent in emerging markets.

Transforming into a Comprehensive Payment Solutions Provider

By launching the Payment Gateway, ‘Curlec by Razorpay’ has evolved into a comprehensive provider of payment solutions, leveraging the synergy between cutting-edge technological capabilities and a profound understanding of the local payment ecosystem. At present, Razorpay has established strong partnerships with more than 700 esteemed Malaysian businesses, including notable entities such as Tune Protect, CTOS, Courts, Mary Kay, and The National Kidney Foundation. The introduction of the new Curlec Payment Gateway aims to cater to a wide spectrum of businesses, expanding its reach to over 5,000 establishments. The primary objective is to achieve an annualized Gross Transaction Value (GTV) of $2 billion by the year 2025.

About Razorpay

Razorpay, an Indian fintech startup, is dedicated to transforming money management for online businesses through its offerings of clean, developer-friendly APIs and seamless integration. The company provides a fast, cost-effective, and secure solution for merchants, schools, e-commerce platforms, and other organizations to effortlessly accept and disburse online payments. Distinguishing itself in the Indian market, Razorpay is the sole payments solution that enables businesses to accept, process, and disburse payments through its comprehensive product suite.

About Curlec

Established in 2018 and based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Curlec is a company that focuses on providing tailored solutions to meet businesses’ recurring payment needs. Their area of expertise lies in developing technology solutions that optimize existing payment infrastructure, simplifying the process for companies of all sizes to effectively collect recurring payments and achieve better control over their cash flows.


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