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PIB Summaries 16 March 2023


  1. Bold Kurukshetra
  2. O-SMART scheme
  3. India Post Payments Bank

Bold Kurukshetra

Focus: Facts for Prelims

Why in News?

Recently, the Singapore Army and Indian Army participated in Exercise Bold Kurukshetra which was held at Jodhpur Military Station, India.

Bold Kurukshetra: India-Singapore Bilateral Military Exercise

  • The Bold Kurukshetra is an annual bilateral military exercise between India and Singapore.
  • It is in its 13th edition, with the first exercise conducted in 2005.
  • Hosted by the Indian Army, the exercise involves soldiers from the 42nd Battalion, Singapore Armoured Regiment and an Armoured Brigade of the Indian Army.
  • This year’s exercise marked the first time that both armies participated in a command post exercise involving Battalion and Brigade level planning elements and computer wargaming.
  • The exercise aims to enhance cooperation between the two armies, developing inter-operability through a computer simulation-based Wargame using joint operational and tactical procedures controlled through a joint command post.
  • It focuses on understanding mechanised warfare in emerging threats and evolving technologies.
  • The exercise underscores the strong and long-standing bilateral defence relationship between both countries.
  • Both defence establishments interact regularly through high-level visits, policy dialogues, courses and other professional exchanges.

O-SMART Scheme

Focus: GS I- Geography

Why in News?

Union Minister of State, PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology, M/o Earth Sciences; MoS, Atomic Energy and Space said that an amount of Rs. 2177 crore is allocated for implementation of O-SMART scheme during a period of 5 years i.e 2021-22 to 2025-26.

About O-SMART:

  • The scheme encompasses seven sub-schemes namely Ocean Technology, Ocean Modelling and Advisory Services (OMAS), Ocean Observation Network (OON), Ocean Non-Living Resources, Marine Living Resources and Ecology (MLRE), Coastal Research and Operation and Maintenance of Research Vessels.
  • These sub-schemes are being implemented by autonomous/attached institutes of the Ministry, viz. National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), Chennai; Indian National Center for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS), Hyderabad; National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR), Goa, Center for Marine Living Resources and Ecology (CMLRE), Kochi; and National Centre for Coastal Research (NCCR), Chennai as well as involving other national institutes.
  • To generate and regularly update information on Marine Living Resources and their relationship with the physical environment in the Indian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ)
  • To periodically monitor levels of sea water pollutants for health assessment of coastal waters of India, to develop shoreline change maps for assessment of coastal erosion due to natural and anthropogenic activities
  • To develop a wide range of state-of-the art ocean observation systems for acquisition of real-time data from the seas around India,
  • To generate and disseminate a suite of user-oriented ocean information, advisories, warnings, data and data products for the benefit of society
  • To develop high resolution models for ocean forecast and reanalysis system
  • To develop algorithms for validation of satellite data for coastal research and to monitor changes in the coastal research
  • Acquisition of 2 Coastal Research Vessels (CRVs) as replacement of 2 old CRVs for coastal pollution monitoring, testing of various underwater components and technology demonstration
  • To develop technologies to tap the marine bio resources and generating freshwater and energy from ocean
  • To carryout exploration of Polymetallic Nodules (MPN) from water depth of 5500m in site of 75000 allotted to India by United Nations in Central Indian Ocean Basin, to carryout investigations of gas hydrates.

India Post Payments Bank

Focus: GS III- Indian Economy

Why in News?

MD and CEO of India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) recently said that IPPB wants to convert itself to a universal bank.

About India Post Payments Bank (IPPB)

  • The India Post Payments Bank is a public sector payments bank from India operated by the India Post.
  • The India Post Payment Bank (IPPB) was setup under the Department of Post, Ministry of Communication with 100% equity Owned by Government of India.
  • The India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) will be like any other banks but its operations will be on a smaller scale without involving any credit risk.
  • It will carry out most banking operations like accepting deposits but won’t advance loans or issue credit cards.
  • Motto: “Every customer is important, every transaction is significant and every deposit is valuable”.
  • Vision: “Building the most accessible, affordable and trusted bank for the common man”.
  • Mission: “Spearheading financial inclusion by removing barriers and reducing costs for accessing banking services”.
  • The IPPB has been integrated with Post Office Savings Bank (POSB).
  • The IPPB is the sixth Payments bank, which has become operational after Aditya Birla, Airtel, Fino, Jio and Paytm Payments Banks.
  • The freshly-minted payments bank will accept deposits of up to Rs. 1 lakh, offer remittance services, mobile payments/transfers/purchases and other banking services like ATM/debit cards, net banking and third-party fund transfers.
  • The Payments bank are licensed under Section 23 of the Banking Regulation Act 1949, and registered as public limited company under the Companies Act, 2013.

March 2024