Today’s Current Affairs MCQs/ GK Mcqs 21st December 2023

These current affairs today are a part of our daily current affairs. We cover a wide range of topics from state, national, and international news that are relevant and important for competitive exams. Our team prepares today’s current affairs after going through many newspapers, such as The Hindu, Indian Express, PIB, PRS, etc.

Scroll down for current affairs for 21st December 2023.

IndiGo Attains Pinnacle: First Indian Airline to Carry 100 Million Passengers Annually

  • IndiGo, India’s premier carrier, has etched its name in history, achieving the unprecedented feat of transporting 100 million passengers within a single calendar year. 
  • This triumph elevates IndiGo to an exclusive global echelon of carriers operating at such an immense scale, firmly establishing its standing among the top-10 airlines worldwide in terms of passenger traffic. 
  • The significance of IndiGo’s success is further emphasized by its substantial backlog of nearly 1,000 planes, poised for delivery over the next decade. 
  • The airline’s bold strategy for fleet expansion positions it for sustained growth and an augmented market share in the fiercely competitive aviation industry.

EU Expresses Displeasure Over India’s Rejection of Interim Arbitration in WTO Dispute

  • The European Union (EU) has expressed dissatisfaction with India’s decision to abstain from interim arbitration in the ongoing dispute concerning import duties on specific Information and Communications Technology (ICT) products, such as smartphones and components. 
  • India justifies its stance, contending that interim agreements undermine the right to appeal to a permanent standing body and underscores the necessity to reinstate the functioning of the WTO appellate body. 
  • India defends its position at the World Trade Organization’s dispute settlement body meeting.
  • Background: In April 2019, the EU filed a complaint against India’s import tariffs on certain ICT products, alleging a violation of India’s WTO commitments. The contested products encompass mobile phones, components, base stations, integrated circuits, and optical instruments.

Colorado Supreme Court Rules Trump Can’t Run for President

  • In a significant decision, the Colorado Supreme Court, composed entirely of justices appointed by Democratic governors, declared that former U.S. President Donald Trump is ineligible for the presidency under the U.S. Constitution’s insurrection clause. 
  • The court’s 4-3 decision sets the stage for a legal battle, as Trump’s lawyers promised to appeal the disqualification to the U.S. Supreme Court, which has the final say on constitutional matters. The legal challenge revolves around whether the leading candidate for the GOP nomination can stay in the race. 
  • The court ruled that Trump is disqualified from holding the presidency under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which prohibits individuals who engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the Constitution from holding office. This decision is based on Trump’s alleged role in inciting the January 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol.

Thirteen States Raise Rs 19,692 Crore in State Government Securities Auction

  • Thirteen Indian states took part in an auction for state government securities, collectively raising Rs 19,692 crore, slightly exceeding the notified amount of Rs 19,592 crore. 
  • This shows an increase from the previous week when eight states raised Rs 12,100 crore through a similar auction. 
  • According to data from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh emerged as the top states, each successfully raising Rs 4,000 crore. 
  • Karnataka raised Rs 4,000 crore through two papers: Rs 2,000 crore via a 15-year paper with a cut-off yield of 7.60% and another Rs 2,000 crore through a 16-year paper with a cut-off yield of 7.64%.

Insights into the JN.1 Variant of the COVID-19 Virus

  • The World Health Organization (WHO) sounded an alarm on Sunday, December 17, expressing apprehension about the evolving nature of the JN.1 COVID subvariant and the surge in respiratory diseases globally. 
  • The organization implores member states to prioritize sharing genetic sequences and intensify surveillance efforts to comprehend and counter the shifting landscape of the virus. 
  • JN.1 exhibits distinctive traits, spreading rapidly and showcasing the ability to elude immunity. This worrisome combination renders it proficient in infecting individuals with prior COVID infections and those who have been vaccinated. 
  • In India, JN.1 was identified in Kerala on December 8, with a reported case in a 79-year-old woman exhibiting mild symptoms of Influenza-like Illness (ILI). The country is urged to remain vigilant and implement necessary measures to curb the variant’s spread.

IMF Changes India’s Exchange Rate Regime: More Stability Amid Different Opinions

  • The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has reclassified India’s de facto exchange rate regime from “floating” to a “stabilized arrangement” for the period December 2022 to October 2023. 
  • This change comes after an Article IV review, where the IMF staff disagreed with Indian authorities on exchange rate stability. 
  • Over the past two years, the rupee-dollar exchange rate showed significant movement, depreciating by about 15% between December 2019 and November 2022. 
  • Improved domestic macroeconomic stability, supported by tightened monetary policy, attracted capital inflows over the past year.

SBI’s Value Soars: Market Cap Hits Rs 6 Trillion with a 17% Rise in a Month

  • State Bank of India (SBI) has seen its shares climb to a new high, reaching a record Rs 659.50, indicating a substantial 17% increase in the past month. 
  • This surge has outpaced the market, surpassing the growth of S&P BSE Sensex and Nifty 50, which rose by nearly 9%, and the Nifty PSU Bank index that gained 14% during the same period. 
  • The rise in SBI’s stock price reflects positive investor confidence in the bank.
  • Investors are displaying renewed interest in SBI’s potential for growth and long-term success, fueled by expectations of robust earnings, dividend payouts, and future opportunities.

Surge in Unclaimed Deposits in Indian Banks: ₹42,270 Crore, Up 28% in 2023

  • During the ongoing Winter Session, the Indian Parliament revealed a concerning trend in unclaimed deposits within the country’s banking sector. 
  • Unclaimed deposits have witnessed a substantial 28% annual increase, reaching a staggering ₹42,270 crore by the end of the last financial year in March 2023. This marks a significant jump from the previous year’s figure of ₹32,934 crore. 
  • Public sector banks accounted for the majority of unclaimed deposits, with a substantial ₹36,185 crore, while private sector banks held ₹6,087 crore in unclaimed deposits as of March 2023. 
  • Unclaimed deposits, as defined by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), refer to balances left in savings or current accounts that have remained inactive for 10 or more years. 
  • Following this period, such deposits are to be transferred to the RBI’s Depositor Education and Awareness (DEA) Fund.

Government Reports Drop in Agriculture’s GDP Share to 15% in FY23

  • India’s economic landscape has seen a significant shift over the last few decades, marked by a notable decrease in the share of agriculture in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). 
  • According to recent government data, the share of agriculture in India’s GDP decreased from 35% in the fiscal year 1990-91 to 15% in 2022-23. 
  • Union Agriculture Minister Arjun Munda emphasized that the decline in the share of agriculture in the Gross Value Added (GVA) of the economy is not due to a reduction in agricultural GVA but is instead a result of the remarkable expansion of the industrial and service sector GVAs. 
  • Despite the decreasing share in GDP, the agricultural and allied sector has shown resilience, registering an average annual growth of 4% over the last five years. 
  • This suggests that while agriculture’s contribution to the overall economy may be shrinking proportionately, the sector is still experiencing positive growth.

Tiger Attacks Claim 112 Lives in India in 2022

  • Tiger attacks on humans have been a significant concern in India, with recent information revealing the extent of the issue. In 2022 alone, a total of 112 deaths occurred in the country due to tiger attacks. 
  • The Union Minister for Forest, Environment, and Climate Change, Bhupinder Yadav, shared these statistics in a written reply to the Lok Sabha, highlighting the gravity of the situation. Maharashtra witnessed the highest number of deaths, with 85 reported cases in 2022. 
  • This alarming statistic underscores the urgent need to address the human-tiger conflict in the state. 
  • Uttar Pradesh also faced the brunt of tiger attacks, recording 11 deaths in the same period. The Minister disclosed that over the past five years, a total of 302 people lost their lives in incidents involving tiger attacks.

RBI Gives Green Light to Razorpay and Cashfree as Payment Facilitators

  • Razorpay and Cashfree, big players in payment processing, have received the final approval from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to operate as Payment Aggregators (PAs). 
  • Payment Aggregators (PAs) are companies that help e-commerce sites and merchants accept different payment methods from customers, making the payment process smoother without requiring merchants to create their own systems. 
  • Pine Labs, Razorpay, and American payments player Stripe were among the first to get in-principle approval for the PA license in July 2022.

International Human Solidarity Day 2023: December 20th Celebration

  • International Human Solidarity Day 2023 is an important yearly observance on December 20th, recognized by the UN General Assembly. 
  • This day highlights the significance of solidarity in promoting global unity and diversity. 
  • The specific theme for International Human Solidarity Day 2023 hasn’t been revealed yet. 
  • Once disclosed, it will be updated on the dedicated International Human Solidarity Day 2023 Theme Page. 
  • This day is vital, providing a platform for nations to recommit to various international agreements. 
  • Discussions and events focus on fostering solidarity and addressing issues like landmine use, disaster relief, universal education, poverty eradication, and more.

India’s Thermal Coal Imports from the US Hit Two-Year High in November

  • In November, India saw a notable increase in long-haul thermal coal imports, with shipments from the United States reaching 1.40 million tonnes (MT), marking the highest level in over a year. 
  • According to energy intelligence firm Kpler, India’s total thermal coal imports for the month amounted to 17.51 MT, slightly lower than the 15-month high of 18.66 MT recorded in October 2023. In 2022, Indonesia became India’s largest overseas supplier of thermal coal. 
  • Despite this, the US maintained its position as India’s second-largest supplier of coking coal after Australia, as of October 2023. Russia secured the third position in coking coal supplies.

Gaja Capital Business Book Prize: ‘Against All Odds’ and ‘Winning Middle India’ Joint Winners

  • In its 2023 edition, the Gaja Capital Business Book Prize, a prestigious annual award, has declared two outstanding stories as joint winners. Against All Odds: 
  • The IT Story of India and Winning Middle India: The Story of India’s New-Age Entrepreneurs capture the essence of India’s dynamic business landscape. 
  • Authorized by Kris Gopalkrishnan, N Dayasindhu, and Krishnan Narayanan, Against All Odds intricately weaves together firsthand accounts from over five distinguished individuals who played a crucial role in shaping the IT industry. 
  • The jury praised the book for its detailed exploration of the challenges, triumphs, and transformative moments that have defined the trajectory of the IT sector in India.

MediaTek and Nvidia Join Forces for AI in Cars

  • Semiconductor giants MediaTek and Nvidia have recently joined hands in a strategic partnership to bring artificial intelligence (AI) to the forefront of the automotive industry. 
  • This collaboration is a bold move toward transforming in-car experiences, shaping the evolution of autonomous driving systems, and setting a new standard for smart vehicles. 
  • One of the primary focuses of this partnership is the seamless integration of AI into autonomous driving systems. 
  • By combining Nvidia’s deep learning and AI capabilities with MediaTek’s advanced system-on-chip (SoC) solutions, the aim is to create a comprehensive platform capable of instantly handling and understanding complex data from cameras, sensors, and other sources.

Suzlon and REC Ltd Join Forces for Working Capital

  • Suzlon Group, India’s leading renewable energy solutions provider, has recently signed a definitive agreement with REC Limited, a state-run entity, for crucial working capital facilities. 
  • This strategic partnership aims to strengthen Suzlon’s capacity to meet its working capital needs, essential for executing its extensive current order book and potential future projects. 
  • REC Ltd, classified as a ‘Maharatna’ company and under the administrative purview of the Ministry of Power, specializes in providing long-term financial solutions, including loans, to entities in the country’s infrastructure sector. 
  • This collaboration signifies a renewed partnership, as REC Ltd has played a vital role in supporting Suzlon’s past endeavors, including debt refinancing, ultimately contributing to Suzlon achieving a debt-free status.

Israeli Film ‘Children of Nobody’ Wins Top Honor at Kolkata International Film Festival

  • The 29th Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) wrapped up with a significant moment as the Israeli film ‘Children of Nobody’ clinched the esteemed Golden Royal Bengal Tiger Award for Best Film. 
  • Based on a true story, this heartfelt Israeli drama brings attention to the often overlooked individuals on the outskirts of society. 
  • Directed by Erez-Tadmor from Tel-Aviv, the movie unfolds the gripping journey of troubled boys coming together to save a shelter for at-risk youth, offering them a haven from the streets. 
  • The film not only garnered critical acclaim but also received the highest cash award from any film festival globally—an impressive Rs 51 lakh along with the trophy. 
  • This recognition not only highlights the film’s excellence but also showcases the international acclaim received by Israeli cinema.

Amitabh Bachchan Becomes Mumbai Team Owner in Indian Street Premier League

  • Legendary actor Amitabh Bachchan has revealed his ownership of the Mumbai team in the upcoming Indian Street Premier League (ISPL). 
  • Previous announcements disclosed that actors Akshay Kumar and Hrithik Roshan have taken ownership of the Srinagar and Bengaluru teams, respectively. 
  • This star-studded ownership adds extra glamour and excitement to the league, featuring 19 high-intensity matches during its inaugural edition. 
  • The six participating teams are Hyderabad, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata, and Srinagar, representing cities and providing a diverse mix of competitive players.

Maheshwar Dayal Takes Charge as Director General of Prisons

  • Maheshwar Dayal, a senior IPS officer, officially stepped into the role of Director General of Prisons and Correctional Services on Monday, December 18. 
  • With a distinguished career marked by leadership roles in various districts and specialized units, Dayal brings a wealth of experience to his new position.
  • Let’s explore his impressive journey through the ranks of law enforcement. Dayal began his law enforcement journey as a Superintendent of Police (SP) in Virudhunagar, showcasing dedication and leadership skills. 
  • He went on to serve as SP in The Nilgiris and Nagapattinam districts, demonstrating his ability to adapt to diverse operational environments.

Indian Government Warns Public About Smishing Threats

  • The Indian government issues a warning about a new and sophisticated scam called “Smishing,” which exploits text messages to deceive individuals into revealing confidential information. 
  • Fraudulent messages may impersonate banks, government agencies, or well-known brands, creating a false sense of urgency to trick recipients. 
  • In case of falling victim to a smishing attack, individuals can report online financial fraud by dialing 1930 and report any cybercrime at cybercrime.gov.in. 
  • Timely reporting is crucial to mitigating the impact of such scams and preventing further harm.

Google Introduces AI-Powered Enhancements for Maps in India

  • Google Maps, the widely used navigation tool, is getting a significant upgrade in India with new features powered by artificial intelligence (AI). In a groundbreaking move for India, Google is set to launch the Address Descriptor early next year. 
  • This innovation aims to simplify location searches by providing a more intuitive experience. 
  • By automatically suggesting five landmarks in the vicinity when users drop a pin to share their location, Google enhances the visual mapping experience, going beyond traditional latitude and longitude coordinates.

Kakrapar Unit-4 Power Project Achieves Initial Criticality

  • The Unit 4 of Kakrapar Atomic Power Project (KAPP 4 – 700 MW) achieved a historic milestone in India’s nuclear power landscape by reaching initial criticality, marking the start of controlled fission chain reactions. 
  • This significant achievement on December 17, 2023, highlights the stringent safety standards set by the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB). 
  • It reinforces the commitment to AtmaNirbhar Bharat, with reactors designed, constructed, commissioned, and operated by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL), and equipment supply and contracts executed by Indian industries and companies.

Accenture Opens Generative AI Studio in Bengaluru

  • Accenture, a global leader in professional services, has taken a major step in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) with the establishment of its Generative AI Studio in Bengaluru, India. 
  • This state-of-the-art facility is poised to become a central hub for the development and application of generative AI technologies, showcasing Accenture’s commitment to advancing AI solutions for businesses. 
  • The primary goal of the Generative AI Studio is to serve as a collaborative space where Accenture’s data and AI team collaborates with clients in developing solutions based on generative AI. 
  • Accenture envisions these solutions as powerful tools to optimize business processes and facilitate the reinvention of enterprises.

1. What is the primary objective of the strategic partnership between Suzlon and REC Ltd?

  1. Enhancing sports facilities
  2. Strengthening Suzlon’s working capital capacity
  3. Promoting cultural exchange
  4. Researching climate change

Show Answer

Correct Answer: Strengthening Suzlon’s working capital capacity

The partnership aims to strengthen Suzlon’s working capital capacity

2. What is the genre of the film ‘Children of Nobody’?

  1. Romantic Comedy
  2. Thriller
  3. Animation
  4. Heartfelt Drama

Show Answer

Correct Answer: Heartfelt Drama

The film ‘Children of Nobody’ is a heartfelt drama

3. How many teams are participating in the Indian Street Premier League’s inaugural edition?

  1. 4
  2. 6
  3. 8
  4. 10

Show Answer

Correct Answer: 6

The league features six participating teams.

4. In which district did Maheshwar Dayal serve as Superintendent of Police (SP) initially?

  1. The Nilgiris
  2. Nagapattinam
  3. Virudhunagar
  4. Bengaluru

Show Answer

Correct Answer: Virudhunagar

Maheshwar Dayal served as SP in Virudhunagar initially.

5. What is “Smishing”?

  1. A new cooking technique
  2. A dance form
  3. A sophisticated text message scam
  4. A type of bird

Show Answer

Correct Answer: A sophisticated text message scam’

“Smishing” is a sophisticated text message scam.

6. What innovative feature will Google introduce in Maps to simplify location searches in India?

  1. 3D virtual reality tours
  2. Augmented reality games
  3. Address Descriptor
  4. Voice-controlled navigation

Show Answer

Correct Answer: Address Descriptor

Google will introduce the Address Descriptor to simplify location searches.

7. What does the achievement of initial criticality signify for the Kakrapar Unit-4 Power Project?

  1. Completion of construction
  2. Start of controlled fission chain reactions
  3. Establishment of a new power plant
  4. Solar energy breakthrough

Show Answer

Correct Answer: Start of controlled fission chain reactions

It signifies the start of controlled fission chain reactions.

8. What is the primary goal of Accenture’s Generative AI Studio?

  1. Creating music albums
  2. Developing solutions based on generative AI technologies
  3. Hosting cooking classes
  4. Promoting traditional art forms

Show Answer

Correct Answer: Developing solutions based on generative AI technologies

The primary goal is to develop solutions based on generative AI technologies.

9. Why is the European Union displeased with India, as mentioned in the news?

  1. India rejected interim arbitration in a WTO dispute.
  2. India proposed a new trade agreement.
  3. India accepted the EU’s terms in the ICT dispute.
  4. India withdrew from the WTO.

Show Answer

Correct Answer: India rejected interim arbitration in a WTO dispute.

The EU expresses dissatisfaction because India abstained from interim arbitration in a WTO dispute.

10. How much money did thirteen Indian states collectively raise in a recent auction for state government securities?

  1. Rs 19,592 crore.
  2. Rs 12,100 crore.
  3. Rs 19,692 crore.
  4. Rs 15,000 crore.

Show Answer

Correct Answer: Rs 19,692 crore.

Thirteen states raised Rs 19,692 crore, slightly exceeding the notified amount.

Today’s Current Affairs MCQs/ GK MCQs 20th December 2023

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