Home » Current Affairs Date: 14 December 2022

Current Affairs Date: 14 December 2022

National

First three-day "floating" photo exhibition

⇒ The first three-day “floating” photo exhibition organized by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting Central Bureau of Communication Regional Office, Imphal, Manipur was held at Loktak Lake from September 21-23, 2022.

    • The novel exhibition was housed on a specially constructed floating platform on the Lake, and was accessed by a wooden causeway from the shore.
Key Points:
    • This was the first-time that such an arrangement was attempted by the Central Bureau of Communication in its history of over 50 years.
    • Cultural items by departmental artistes and private troupes of CBC, RO, Imphal were also performed on a floating stage constructed specially for the event.
    • In addition, a dance by actual fishermen and fisherwomen of the communities around the lake, on boats, was performed.
    • As many as 88 Manipuri language creatives of “Eight years of Seva, Sushasan, Garib Kalyan” and around creatives of 11 unsung Manipuri freedom fighters were displayed in the exhibition.

RSC and CSIR work together to support chemistry in schools across India

⇒ The Royal Society of Chemistry and the Council for Industry and Scientific Research (CSIR) have partnered to support an outreach programme designed to promote the chemical sciences in schools and universities.

    • About 2000 students across the country participated in RSC’s Global Coin experiment organised across over 30 CSIR laboratories.
Aim:

The two organisations have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), committing to work together on the CSIR’s Jigyasa programme – an India-wide outreach programme aimed at school children and researchers.

» The MoU will be a non-financial one and will be time-bound for at least three years with an option of renewal.

 Key Points:
    • The CSIR is dedicated to research and development across the spectrum of science and technology – from oceanography and mining to chemicals and nanotechnology. The organisation owns a network of laboratories and outreach centres across India.
    • The Jigyasa programme will complement existing educational programmes in India. For example, the RSC-Jigyasa partnership will help to expand the RSC’s existing teacher training programme and Chemistry Camps, and will be launching several online education initiatives.
Royal Society of Chemistry:
    • RSC, an international organisation connecting chemical scientists with each other, with other scientists, and with society as a whole. Founded in 1841 and based in London, UK, RSC has an international membership of over 50,000.
Council for Industry and Scientific Research (CSIR):
    • CSIR, established in 1942, is an autonomous society known for its cutting-edge R&D knowledgebase in diverse Science & Technology areas.
    • CSIR is a contemporary Research, Development & Engineering organization having Pan-India presence with a dynamic network of 37 national laboratories.

International

9th Session of Governing Body of the 'International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture' (ITPGRFA)

⇒ India hosted the 9th Session of Governing Body of the ‘International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture’ (ITPGRFA) from 19-24th September, 2022 in New Delhi.

    • The six-day GB9 session of ITPGRFA was inaugurated by the Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar in New Delhi on September 19, 2022.
    • More than 400 eminent scientists and resource persons from 150 member-countries participated in the deliberation during the 9th session of GB.
Theme:

The GB9 was held under the theme “Celebrating the Guardians of Crop Diversity: Towards an Inclusive Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework”.

    • The theme was aimed to acknowledge the contribution of the world’s small-holder farmers to the effective management of PGRFA, while provided an opportunity to consider how the Treaty and its community will contribute to the new global biodiversity framework.
Discussions during GB9:
    1. capacity-development strategy for the Treaty
    2. Funding strategy, resource mobilization and the budget
    3. conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA and agriculture
    4. compliance
    5. cooperation with other organizations and bodies
    6. the Multi-year Programme of Work, including digital sequence information

» Dialogues also held to further strengthen clauses under the Treaty and in the context of the Convention on Biological Diversity and its Nagoya Protocol, Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, Global Crop Diversity Trust, and new Global Biodiversity Framework to pursue a more robust Treaty implementation.

Key Points:

First contribution towards Benefit Sharing Fund of Treaty from India

In a historical first, Federation of Seed Industry of India (FSII) contributed Rs 20 lakhs (~USD 25,000) to the Benefit-Sharing Fund (BSF) as the first collective contribution from Indian seed sector, during the GB-9 meetings. The BSF is the funding mechanism of the Treaty used for support of capacity building, Conservation and sustainable use projects among the Contracting Parties of the Treaty.

India appointed as Co-Chair of the Working Group on Enhancement of MLS

Dr Sunil Archak, ICAR-National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources, India, was appointed as Co-Chair, along with Dr Michael Ryan, Department of Agriculture, Canberra, Australia, on the Working Group on ‘Enhancement of the Multilateral System (MLS)’.

Consensus on implementation of Farmers Rights reached after extensive negotiations at GB9

Based on meetings in the last five years of Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on Farmers’ Rights (FRs), Co-Chaired by Dr R.C. Agrawal (India) and Ms Svanhild Isabelle Batta Torheim (Norway), and the working group/plenary deliberations during the GB9 meeting, a resolution on implementation of Farmers Rights under Article 9 was finally agreed upon ensuring equilibrium and justice.

India flags issue regarding genebank funding

In a major breakthrough in the GB9 of ITPGRFA, Contracting Parties acknowledged the intervention made by India, and supported by many African nations, regarding effect due to institutional reform within the CGAIR system on funding of genebanks globally, and CIFOR-ICRAF and ICRISAT in particular.

    • GB emphasised the need to ensure the long-term safety of the Article 15 IARC genebanks and the distribution of germplasm held ‘in trust’ by the CGIAR centres and other Article 15 genebanks, and for long-term solutions by strengthening the Treaty and the Crop Trust mechanism.

» The GB9 provided an excellent opportunity to convey the steadfast commitment of India to conservation and sustainable utilization of plant genetic diversity as well as farmers’ rights.

About ITPGRFA:
    • ITPGRFA is a legally binding comprehensive agreement adopted in November, 2001 at Rome during the 31st session of Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, which entered into force on June 29, 2004 and currently has 149 Contracting Parties, including India.
    • The treaty provides solutions to achieve food and nutritional security as well as climate resilient agriculture. Countries are inter-dependent for PGRFA and consequently a global order is essential to facilitate access and benefit sharing.

Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh & his Egyptian counterpart General Mohamed Zaki hold bilateral talks

⇒ Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh held bilateral talks with Egyptian Defence Minister General Mohamed Zaki in Cairo on September 19, 2022.

Shri Rajnath Singh, who is on an official visit to Egypt, was accorded a ceremonial Guard of Honour at the Ministry of Defence in Cairo, prior to the commencement of bilateral talks.

    • Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh paid an official visit to Egypt from September 19-20, 2022.
Discussion:

During the meeting, both sides discussed steps to strengthen defence ties and reached a consensus to enhance conduct of joint exercises and exchange of personnel for training, especially in the field of counter-insurgency.

Key Points:
    • The two Ministers also agreed to identify proposals for expanding cooperation between the defence industries of India and Egypt in a time-bound manner.
    • They also exchanged views on regional security and acknowledged the contribution of India and Egypt to peace & stability in the world.
    • Both sides expressed happiness at the intensified defence engagement and exchanges over the last year, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
    • Following the Raksha Mantri’s call on with the President of Egypt Mr Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, both the Ministers agreed to consolidate and focus on enhancing security and defence aspects of bilateral cooperation.
    • Signing of MoU by the two Defence Ministers on cooperation in the field of defence was a milestone event during the visit, which will pave the way for enhancing defence cooperation across all sectors of mutual interest.

Source: PIB & Other News Reports

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