16.11.21 Daily UKPSC Current Affairs

 

UTTARAKHAND

 

Uttarakhand’s biggest biodiversity park, spread across 50 hectares, to be set up in Garhwal

 

Uttarakhand’s biggest biodiversity park will be set up at Garhwal’s Muni Ki Reti. Dubbed the Shiwalik Biodiversity Park (SBP) and spread across 50 hectares of land, its aim is to conserve the natural landscape of the area. The park is expected to bring in around 5 lakh tourists who visit Rishikesh every year. It will have 33 types of conservation concepts, all developed at the cost of Rs 65 crore. The project will be executed in three phases over the next five years. Interestingly, the park is expected to generate employment for at least 7,000 people, according to preliminary estimates by forest authorities.

 

Objectives behind building the park include biodiversity conservation, promotion of natural products (testing, processing, value addition, marketing, and quality control), livelihood enhancement, eco-restoration of degraded forests, nature education, promoting responsible visits to the Himalayan natural treasures, and teaching the importance of various types of ecosystems. The SBP is divided into two parts, the Herbal Eco-Par, spread across 6.32 hectares, and Nature Park Area, across 43.05 hectares.

 

The biodiversity park will also have miniature replicas of iconic sites in Uttarakhand such as the Char Dham shrines. It will have a valley of flowers with a water body, a nature learning centre, butterfly conservatory, open-air aviary, a theme-based light and sound show called ‘Conservation of the Maa Ganga River’, a natural herbal haat, a conservation park, some livelihood-based activities, five nature trails, and a Sanskriti Gram.

The biodiversity park would have a Shivalik transition zone, a rich ecotone, hillside grasslands, gentle active plains, tropical deciduous forests, bushlands, and upper Bhabar landscapes. These different landscapes would be interconnected by nature trails and would support more than 1,000 species of plants. The park is surrounded by the main Char Dham roads, NH-58 and NH-94, which is why the department is expecting a handsome income generation through the set-up.

 

INTERNATIONAL

 

Worlds Largest Solar Power Park In Bhadla

 

The world’s largest solar power park is located in Rajasthan’s Bhadla Solar Park.

Highlights:

♦ The solar park is located in Bhadla, Rajasthan, which is an arid and sandy environment.

♦ It covers a total of 14,000 acres.

♦ The park contains a total of ten million solar panels. These solar panels contribute to a total capacity of 2245 MW of operating capacity.

♦ Bhadla Solar Park will be the world’s largest solar park by 2020. It is located in Bhadla, Rajasthan’s Jodhpur district, and covers an area of 5,700 hectares.

♦ The park has a total capacity of 2245 megawatts (MW). At Rs 2.44 per kilowatt-hour, it had received the lowest solar power bid in India.

 

It now has a total capacity of 2,245 MW, making it the world’s largest solar park, with a total investment of Rs 100 billion.

 

NATIONAL

 

Govt Signs $61 Million Loan With ADB

 

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has agreed to lend $61 million to the Indian Govt. to enhance living conditions, stimulate new developments in Agartala.

Highlights:

♦ A loan agreement was reached between India and the Asian Development Bank for the Agartala City After Urban Development Project.

♦ This initiative is in line with the Smart City Mission’s objective of improving urban infrastructure services.

♦ It will improve Agartala’s liveability by improving road connectivity, implementing flood-resilient measures, and enhancing the appeal of tourism attractions.

♦ Through this project, the ADB hopes to catalyse synergies with smart city components that are being implemented in Agartala.

 

National Press Day Commemorated On 16 November

 

Every year on November 16th, National Press Day is held to honour India’s free and responsible press.

Highlights:

♦ The Press Council of India began working as a moral watchdog on this day, ensuring that the press maintains high standards and is neither influenced or threatened.

♦ It also marks the establishment of the Press Council of India.

♦ The First Press Commission was established in 1956 with the goal of forming a Press Council to preserve India’s press freedom.

♦ The Press Council of India was created on July 4, 1966. It went into effect on November 16, 1966.

 

Wholesale Price Index (WPI) Released

 

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry announced its Wholesale Price Index (WPI) statistics.

Highlights:

♦ Provisional Wholesale Price Index (WPI)-based inflation increased to a five-month high of 12.54 percent in October 2021, compared to 66 percent in September.

♦ An increase in gasoline and manufacturing prices was blamed for the increase.

♦ The  benchmark inflation has been in double digits for seven months in a row. The benchmark inflation rate in October 2020 was 1.31 percent.

♦ When compared to the same month the previous year, the high rate of inflation in October 2021 was driven by a surge in the costs of mineral oils, basic metals, crude petroleum and natural gas, food, chemicals, and chemical products, among other things.

 

States to get additional Rs 47,500 crore this month: Finance minister

 

 

The Centre decided to release an additional Rs 47,500 crore to states as their share of taxes in order to boost capital spending, especially for infrastructure. The Centre said the reduction in excise duty on petrol and diesel would not impact transfers to states.

 

The Centre, which has seen healthy revenue collections, has already stepped up fund transfer for GST compensation and is now pushing more funds to states, which were sitting on cash balance of nearly Rs 2.7 lakh crore at the end of October. Only four states had a negative cash balance.

 

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