Daily current affairs | 14 January 2020

●Indian harvest festivals
•The Harvest season is on and festivities have gripped the nation from the north to down south
◽Makar Sankranti: It is a harvest festival that is celebrated across the country with different names
[The festival of Makar Sankranti will be celebrated in Karnataka when the Sun enters the Makar zodiac and the days begin to lengthen compared to nights]
◽Pongal: In South India and particularly in Tamil Nadu, it’s the festival of Pongal which is being celebrated over 4 days at harvest time
◽Magha Bihu: In Assam and many parts of the North East, the festival of Magha Bihu is celebrated.
◽Uttarayan: Gujarat celebrates it in the form of the convivial kite festival of Uttarayan
◽Maghi: In Punjab, Makar Sankranti is celebrated as Maghi. Bathing in a river in the early hours on Maghi is important
◽Saaji: In Shimla District of Himachal Pradesh, Makara Sankranti is known as Magha Saaji
◽Kicheri: The festival is known as Kicheri in Uttar Pradesh and involves ritual bathing
◽Maghe Sankranti is a Nepalese festival observed on the first of Magh in the Bikram Samwat Hindu Solar Nepali calendar
●World’s fastest-growing cities: a survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU)
•Cities are ranked based on “Total % change, 2015-20 forecast”
•Malappuram(1st), Kozhikode(4th) and Kollam(10th)were the only three cities to make it to the top 10 of the world’s fastest-growing cities.[ Only!😊!]
•Malappuram was ranked No. 1 in the world rankings with a 44.1% change between 2015 and 2020.
•In 2001, there were two municipal corporations within the UA of Malappuram[
urban agglomeration (UA) is an urban area]
• In 2011, the number of municipal corporations had doubled to four, and an additional 37 CTs were included within Malappuram.
•The population of the UA (excluding the residents of the outgrowths) increased almost 10 times in the same period — from 1,70,409 to 16,99,060 — obviously because of the inclusion of existing urban areas in the town
●What is the commissionerate system
•In the commissionerate system, the Commissioner of Police (CP) is the head of a unified police command structure, is responsible for the force in the city, and is accountable to the state government.
•The office also has magisterial powers, including those related to regulation, control, and licensing.【IPS>IAS】
•Previously, only four cities had the system: Kolkata, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai
•However, with rapid urbanisation, states felt an increasing need to replicate the system in more places
•Over the years, it has been extended to numerous cities, including Delhi, Pune, Bangalore and Ahmedabad. By January 2016, 53 cities had this system
●Integrated Road Accident Database (IRAD): Developed by the Indian Institute of Technology-Madras (IIT-M)
•It will be implemented by the National Informatics Centre.
•The project costs ₹258 crore and is being supported by the World Bank
•The IRAD mobile application will enable police personnel to enter details about a road accident, along with photos and videos, following which a unique ID will be created for the incident
•Data thus collected will be analysed by a team at IIT-M, which will then suggest if corrective measures in road design need to be taken
•The system will be first piloted in the six States with highest fatalities from road crashes — Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh
●SCO has included the Statue of Unity among the ‘Eight Wonders of the SCO.
•Statue of Unity: At 182 metre, the statue is 23 metre taller than China’s Spring Temple Buddha statue and almost double the height of the Statue of Liberty (93 metre tall) in US
[Statue of Unity is located between the Satpura and the Vindhya mountain ranges.]
◽Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO):
•It is a permanent intergovernmental international organisation
•SCO comprises eight member states, namely 【India, Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyz Republic, Pakistan, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan】
◽Eight Wonders of the SCO are:
1.India — the Statue of Unity.
2.Kazakhstan — the Archaeological Landscape of Tamgaly.
3.China — The Daming imperial palace complex.
4.Kyrgyzstan — Lake Issyk-Kul.
5.Pakistan — The Great Mughals’ heritage at Lahore.
6.Russia — The Golden Ring cities.
7.Tajikistan — The Palace of Nowruz.
8.Uzbekistan — the Poi Kalon complex
●Hormuz peace initiative Hide — uploads.disquscdn.com
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•The meeting of Hormuz Peace Initiative was recently held in Iran.
[The meeting saw participation from key regional players including Oman and India besides Afghanistan and China]
•It aims to stabilise the Strait of Hormuz, the gateway for a significant amount of global oil supplies.
•It is the waterway separates Iran and Oman, linking the Gulf to the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea
•Two-thirds of the oil and half the liquefied natural gas India imports come through the strait between Iran and Oman
●5th Raisina Dialogue : (being held in New Delhi)
•This is an annual geo-political event, organised by the Ministry of External Affairs and Observer Research Foundation (ORF).
•It is designed to explore prospects and opportunities for Asian integration as well as Asia’s integration with the larger world.
•It is predicated on India’s vital role in the Indian Ocean Region and how India along with its partners can build a stable regional and world order.
•More than 700 international participants, including 80 from African countries, are attending the meet.
•This year`s Dialogue is titled `Navigating the Alpha Century
●Island Development Agency (IDA):
•The IDA was set up on June 1, 2017 for the development of islands.
[The meetings of the agency are chaired by the Union Home Minister.]
•Members of the IDA include cabinet secretary, home secretary, secretary (environment, forests and climate change), secretary (tourism) and secretary (tribal welfare).

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