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Rapid Fire Current Affairs

  • 04 Feb 2023
  • 5 min read

36th Surajkund International Crafts Mela

Recently, the Vice President of India inaugurated the 36th Surajkund International Crafts Mela at Faridabad, Haryana where he urged everyone to consider locally produced handicraft items when looking for gifts to their friends and relatives.

This fair is held every year in the month of February, organised by the Surajkund Mela Authority & Haryana Tourism in collaboration with Union Ministries of Tourism, Textiles, Culture and External Affairs. The aim is to promote the pool of skilled artisans, who used indigenous technology, but were suffering due to the cheaper machine-made imitations.

The North Eastern Region (NER) is the Theme State for the year 2023 as the NER is a very important stakeholder in India’s Look-East & Act-East Policy. The partner country for year 2023 is Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO)

The Union Budget 2023-24 has also envisaged the PM Vishwakarma Kaushal Samman, to help craftsmen expand the reach and quality of their creations. Other initiatives include Mudra Yojana, One District, One Product and Unity Malls, etc.

Read More - Surajkund International Crafts Mela

VIHANGAM Drone Technology

Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL), the premier CPSE (Central Public Sector Enterprise) under the Ministry of Coal has introduced drone technology in coal mines by launching a web- based portal VIHANGAM along with a drone and ground control system.

The portal allows an authorised person to access real time drone video from the mine. There is a control station that flies the drone which can be operated anywhere via the portal. This pilot project is currently operational at Bhubaneswari and Lingaraj opencast mines of Talcher Coalfields (Odisha).

Drone technology is being used for environmental monitoring and photogrammetric mapping of mine for digitalisation of the mining process. MCL has also introduced a Robotic Nozzle Water Sprayer in its coal stockyard to carry out difficult jobs like firefighting and dust suppression.

Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL) contributes more than 20% of the total coal produced in India.

Read More - VIHANGAM, Drone Technology


As part of ‘Operation SADBHAVANA’, Indian Army is undertaking multiple welfare activities such as Army Goodwill Schools, Infra-development projects, education tours etc. for the children living in remote areas of UT of Ladakh.

The Indian Army is presently running 7 Army Goodwill Schools under ‘Operation SADBHAVANA’ in Ladakh Region. More than 2,200 Students are currently studying in these schools.

Under this initiative (in FY 22-23), medical camps, veterinary camps, provision of medical equipment, upgradation of medical infrastructure and staffing of Medical Aid Centres have been provided at various remote locations in Ladakh. Women in remote areas of Ladakh are also being inducted in Vocational Training Centres, Women Empowerment Centres and Computer Centres organised and funded through SADBHAVNA.

Operation SADBHAVANA (Goodwill) is a unique humane initiative undertaken by Indian Army and formalised in 1990s in the erstwhile State of J&K to address aspirations of people affected by scrooge of terrorism.

FAO’s Findings on World Food Prices

As per the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World food prices fell in January 2023 for the 10th consecutive month. The FAO Food Price Index, which tracks the most globally traded food commodities, averaged 131.2 points in Jan’23 against 132.2 for Dec’23 - the lowest since Sept 2021.

In separate cereal supply and demand estimates, FAO raised its forecast for global cereal production in 2022 to 2.765 billion tonnes from a previous estimate of 2.756 billion tonnes. International wheat prices declined 2.5% as production in Australia and Russia increased more than expected.

FAO is a UN specialised agency that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. It is one of the UN food aid organisations based in Rome (Italy). Its sister bodies are the World Food Programme and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

Read More - Food and Agriculture Organization's (FAO), World Food Price Index: FAO

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