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Daily Current Affairs -12 SEPTEMBER 2023

September 12, 2023


Launch of West Asia economic corridor is a historic step: PM

  • Two days after the launch of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor, Prime Minister described Saudi Arabia as “one of the most important strategic partners of India”
  • agreed to set up a joint task force to fast-track the West Coast refinery project.
  • historic step to connect India, West Asia and Europe through an economic corridor. Apart from connecting the two countries, the corridor will help in the increase of economic growth, energy sector and digitisation
  • Both sides extended full support to the West Coast refinery project — which is a trilateral project between ARAMCO, ADNOC and Indian companies
  • two sides agreed to set up a joint task force to help in identifying and channelising the $100 billion investment which was actually promised by the Saudi side half of which was for the refinery
  • India is Saudi Arabia’s second-largest trading partner whereas Saudi Arabia is India’s fourth-largest trading partner. Both countries also have a strong partnership in the area of energy


CBI does not require permission to probe pre2014 cases too: SC

    • The article is about does CBI has power to act on cases before this historic judgement or not
    • Constitution Bench on Monday held that a Supreme Court judgment of 2014 which declared invalid a legal provision mandating the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to take prior permission before investigating corruption cases against senior government officials has a retrospective effect.( The meaning of the word retrospective is backdated or to look back.)
    • A five-judge Bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul said the provision in question, Section 6A of the Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act, the statute
    • that governs the CBI, was void from the very day of its insertion on September 11, 2003.
    • This means that senior government officials involved in corruption cases even before the date of the Supreme Court judgment invalidating the need for prior sanction would no longer be able to avail the protection of prior sanction.
    • Section 6A of the DSPE Act does not lay down or introduce any conviction for any offence.
    • Section 6A of the DSPE Act, while it had existed, gave officers of the rank of joint secretary and above immunity from even facing a preliminary inquiry by the CBI. In 2014, a Constitution Bench had declared the legal provision a violation of the right to equality under Article 14 of the Constitution.
    • The provision in Section 6A impedes tracking down the corrupt senior bureaucrat The protection under Section 6A has propensity of shielding the corrupt

What was 2014 case?– The Central Government of India with its sagacity tightened the independence of the Central Bureau of Investigation by making it obligatory to take antecedent permission of the government for carrying out inspection even at primary levels of any civil servant of significant rank

In 2014 case SC RULED THAT Concerning this, the court held that whatever the case may be, the law is always above man and therefore no provision can exist which contravenes the rule of lawhis judgment was passed for the case of Dr Subramanian Swamy v. Director, CBI & Anr


Ban on firecrackers to return; allow green crackers

  • The Delhi government on Monday announced its decision to impose a complete ban on the sale, storage, production, and bursting of firecrackers for the third consecutive year ahead of winter months as it looks to formulate an action plan to combat air pollution in the city.
  • Leader of opposition said in assembly that There has been no scientific study proving that pollution increases due to crackers. While it may be justified to ban crackers that exacerbate pollution, green crackers should not face any restriction
  • GREEN CRACKERS- Green crackers are dubbed as ‘eco-friendly’ crackers and are known to cause less air and noise pollution as compared to traditional firecrackers.
  • These crackers were first designed by the National Environmental and Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), under the aegis of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in 2018.
  • NEERI is a constituent of CSIR to conduct research and developmental studies in environmental science and engineering.
  • Most green crackers do not contain barium nitrate, which is the most dangerous ingredient in conventional crackers.

Regular crackers also produce 160-200 decibels of sound, while that from green crackers are limited to about 100-130 decibels.


IISc scientists develop novel approach to detect and kill cancer cells

  • The scientists have created hybrid nanoparticles made of gold and copper sulphide, which can kill cancer cells using heat, and enable their detection using sound waves.
  • Copper sulphide nanoparticles have previously received attention for their application in cancer diagnosis, while gold nanoparticles, which can be chemically modified to target cancer cells, have shown anticancer effects
  • When light is shined on these hybrid nanoparticles, they absorb the light and generate heat, which can kill cancer cells. These nanoparticles also produce singlet oxygen atoms that are toxic for the cells
  • The photoacoustic property of the nanoparticles allows them to absorb light and generate ultrasound waves, which can be used to detect cancer cells with high contrast once the particles reach them. The ultrasound waves generated from the particles allow for a more accurate image resolution as sound waves scatter less when they pass through tissues compared to light
  • In the current study, the researchers tested their nanoparticles on lung cancer and cervical cancer cell lines in the lab


Gresham’s law: what happens when governments fix currency exchange rates

  • Gresham’s law refers to the dictum that “bad money drives out good
  • Gresham’s law comes into play when the exchange rate between two moneys or currencies is fixed by the government at a certain ratio that is different from the market exchange rate. Such price fixing causes the undervalued currency — that is, the currency whose price is fixed at a level below the market rate — to go out of circulation.
  • The overvalued currency, on the other hand, remains in circulation but it does not find enough buyers.
  • It should be noted that the market exchange rate is essentially an equilibrium price at which the supply of a currency is equal to the demand for the currency
  • the supply of a currency in the market rises as its price rises and falls as its price falls while, on the other hand, the demand for a currency falls as its price rises and rises as its price falls

The recent case study:

  • The Central Bank of Sri Lanka, at a certain point, mandated that the price of the U.S. dollar in terms of the Sri Lankan rupee should not rise beyond 200 rupees per dollar even though rates in the black market suggested that the U.S. dollar should sell for far more than 200 rupees
  • In effect, people were banned from paying more than 200 Sri Lankan rupees for a dollar, thus causing the rupee to be overvalued and the U.S. dollar to be undervalued when compared to the market exchange rate.
  • This caused the supply of dollars in the market to fall and the U.S. dollar to be gradually driven out of the formal foreign exchange market.
  • People who wanted U.S. dollars to purchase foreign goods then had to purchase dollars from the black market by paying far more than 200 Sri Lankan rupees for each U.S. dollar.
  • When the exchange rate between currencies is not fixed and people have the choice to freely choose between currencies, people gradually stop using currencies that they consider to be of poor quality and adopt currencies that are found to be of better quality.

This phenomenon wherein “good money drives out bad” is called Thiers’ law (named after French politician Adolphe Thiers)


New Delhi Declaration reaffirms G-20 is body for economic issues, ‘not geopolitics’: China

  • Beijing said it also “welcomed” the ambitious new India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC) plan unveiled on Saturday — announced by India, the U.S., Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, France, Germany, Italy and the European Union, seen as a counter to China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) — but said it should not become a “geopolitical tool”
  • The IMEC comprises an Eastern Corridor connecting India to the Gulf region and a Northern Corridor connecting the Gulf to Europe, and will include a railway and ship-rail transit network and road transport routes.

China welcomes all initiatives that truly help developing countries build infrastructure and sincere efforts to promote connectivity and common development 


What are picoflare jets

Researchers studying the findings of the Solar Orbiter Aircraft, a joint mission by the European Space Agency and the U.S. space agency NASA, recently announced that they had detected small jets of charged particles that were being expelled in intermittent fashion from the outer regions of the sun’s outer atmosphere.

According to the researchers, these

‘picoflare jets’ could be a source of the solar wind, which have important effects on the solar system at large as well as on the earth’s magnetic field. A solar wind is a highspeed stream of charged particles from the sun, but their exact origin remains unclear.

Pico’ is an order of magnitude that denotes 10^12, or one trillionth of a unit.

The researchers name these jets from the sun thus because they carried approximately one trillionth as much energy as the largest flares that the sun is believed to be able to produce


September 12, 2023
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