May 31, 2020

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

COVID -19 INDIAN NATIONAL SUPERMODEL
Department of Science and Technology (DST) has initiated a COVID-19 Indian National Supermodel to help monitor the future transmission of infection.

About:

  • This will aid decisions involving health system readiness and other mitigation measures.

  • Numerous mathematical models for Covid-19 forecasting and surveillance are being worked out by investigators funded by DST-SERB (Science and Engineering Research Board) and other agencies.

  • As part of this initiative, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR) and IISc, Bangalore will co-ordinate to connect and work with all COVID-19 modeling projects and programs in the country. 

Source : PIB
Health

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

WORLD NO TOBACCO DAY
World No Tobacco Day is being observed on May 31 with the theme "Tobacco and related industry tactics to attract younger generations” to debunk myths and expose devious tactics employed by Tobacco industries.

About:

  • Every year, on 31 May, the World Health Organization (WHO) and global partners celebrate World No Tobacco Day (WNTD).

  • The Member States of the World Health Organization created World No Tobacco Day in 1987 to draw global attention to the tobacco epidemic and the preventable death and disease it causes.

 

Source : News18
Health

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

COVID-19 TECHNOLOGY ACCESS POOL (C-TAP)
WHO and Costa Rica launched the landmark COVID-19 Technology Access Pool (C-TAP).

About:

  • Thirty countries and multiple international partners and institutions have signed up to support the COVID-19 Technology Access Pool (C-TAP).

  • C-TAP is an initiative aimed at making vaccines, tests, treatments and other health technologies to fight COVID-19 accessible to all.

  • The COVID-19 (Technology) Access Pool will be voluntary and based on social solidarity. It will provide a one-stop shop for scientific knowledge, data and intellectual property to be shared equitably by the global community.

  • With supportive countries across the globe, C-TAP will serve as a sister initiative to the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator and other initiatives to support efforts to fight COVID-19 worldwide.

Source : WHO
Health

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

PM CARES FUND
The Prime Minister's Office (PMO) has refused to disclose details on the creation and operation of the PM CARES Fund, telling an RTI applicant that the fund is “not a public authority” within the ambit of the RTI Act, 2005.

About:

  • The Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM CARES) Fund accepts donations and provides relief during the COVID-19 pandemic, and other similar emergencies.

  • According to PMO, “PM CARES Fund is not a Public Authority under the ambit of Section 2(h) of the RTI Act, 2005.

  • The PMO cited a Supreme Court (SC) observation that “indiscriminate and impractical demands under RTI Act for disclosure of all and sundry information would be counterproductive”. 

Source : The Hindu
Polity & Governance

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

RESPONSIBLE AI FOR YOUTH
The Union Minister for Electronics and IT launched a National Program for the youth called “Responsible AI for Youth”.

About:

  • Objective: To empower the youth to become AI ready and help reduce the skill gap, while enabling youth to create meaningful social impact solutions.

  • Bodies involved: The Program has been created and launched by the National e-Governance Division, Ministry of Electronics & IT in collaboration with Intel India, with support from Department of School Education and Literacy (DoSE&L), Ministry of HRD.

  • Coverage: The National Programme is open to students of classes 8 - 12 from Central and State government-run schools (including KVS, NVS, JNV) from across the country.

Important Info :

Strategy:

  • The identified students will attend online training sessions on AI who will submit their ideas through a 60 seconds video explaining a proposed AI enabled solution.
  • From the submitted ideas, top 100 ideas will be shortlisted and these students will be invited to attend sessions. Post the sessions, these students will be asked to create real time projects and submit their final project in a video format on the website. 
Source : Economic Times
Science & Tech

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

NATIONAL AI PORTAL OF INDIA
The Union Minister for Electronics and IT launched India’s national Artificial Intelligence Portal called www.ai.gov.in.

About:

  • This portal has been jointly developed by the Ministry of Electronics and IT and IT Industry. National e-Governance Division of Ministry of Electronics and IT and NASSCOM from the IT industry will jointly run this portal.

  • This portal shall work as a one stop digital platform for AI related developments in India, sharing of resources such as articles, startups, investment funds in AI, resources, companies and educational institutions related to AI in India. 

Source : PIB
Science & Tech

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

ROZGAR SETU
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister has announced the launch of the ‘Rozgar Setu’ scheme, to help secure employment for skilled workers who have returned.

About:

  • After such workers requiring employment are identified, the government will contact factory, workshop owners and contractors overseeing infrastructure projects such as road and bridge construction.

  • Thus, the State government will act as a setu [bridge] between workers and employers so that both are benefited. According to CM, Madhya Pradesh is the first state to devise such a work plan. 

Source : The Hindu
Social Issues

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

Proxima b
An international team of researchers has confirmed the existence of Proxima b, an Earth-like planet that's orbiting the closest star to our Solar System, Proxima Centauri which is only 4.2 light-years from the Sun.

About:

  • They found that Proxima b is 1.17 times the mass of Earth, smaller than the older estimate of 1.3 times. It orbits its star in just 11.2 days.

  • Proxima b was first discovered in 2016 using HARPS (High Accuracy Radial Velocity Planet Searcher), a planet-hunting spectrograph mounted to one of the telescopes at the European Southern Observatory at the La Silla Observatory in Chile.

  • In the recent research, the scientists were able to hone in on the planet with ESPRESSO, a new generation spectrograph also at the observatory in Chile, which boasts three times the precision as HARPS.

Source : The Tribune
Science & Tech

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

FISCAL DEFICIT
India’s fiscal deficit widened to 4.6% of the gross domestic product (GDP) in 2019-20 mainly on account of poor revenue realisation, according to official data provided by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA).

About:

  • The fiscal deficit for 2019-20 worked out to be 4.59% of the GDP. The deficit, which signifies the gap between government revenue and expenditure, is higher than the revised estimate of 3.8% for the fiscal.

  • The revenue deficit for 2019-20 was 3.27% of the GDP. The effective revenue deficit was 2.36%.

  • Revenue receipts during the year worked out to be only 90% of the revised estimate. In absolute terms, total receipts of the government were ₹17.5 lakh crore against the estimate of ₹19.31 lakh crore.

  • The data showed the government’s total expenditure was ₹26.86 lakh crore, lower than the ₹26.98 lakh crore projected earlier. 

Economy

Current Affairs
May 31, 2020

NATIONAL INCOME
The National Statistical Office (NSO), Ministry of Statistics, has released the Provisional Estimates of National Income for the financial year 2019-20 and Quarterly Estimates of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the fourth quarter (January-March) of 2019-20, both at Constant (2011-12) and Current Prices.

About:

  • Real GDP or Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at Constant (2011-12) Prices in the year 2019-20 is now estimated to attain a level of ₹ 145.66 lakh crore.

  • The growth in GDP during 2019-20 is estimated at 4.2 percent as compared to 6.1 percent in 2018-19. This is the lowest annual growth rate of GDP registered under the new GDP data series which uses 2011-12 as the base year.

  • GDP at Current Prices in the year 2019-20 is estimated to attain a level of ₹ 203.40 lakh crore, as against the First Revised Estimates of ₹ 189.71 lakh crore in 2018-19, showing a growth rate of 7.2 percent as compared to 11.0 percent in 2018-19.

  • The Per Capita Income in real terms (at 2011-12 Prices) during 2019-20 is estimated to attain a level of ₹ 94,954 as compared to ₹ 92,085 in the year 2018-19, resulting in growth of 3.1 percent during 2019-20, as against 4.8 per cent in the previous year.

  • The Per Capita Income at current prices during 2019-20 is estimated to be ₹ 134,226, showing a rise of 6.1 percent as compared to ₹ 1,26,521 during 2018-19.

  • GDP at Constant (2011-12) Prices in Q4 of 2019-20 is estimated at ₹ 38.04 lakh crore, as against ₹ 36.90 lakh crore in Q4 of 2018-19, showing a growth of 3.1 percent. 

Important Info :

Comment

  • This sharp deceleration in nominal GDP growth shows the continued weakening of India’s growth momentum even before it was hit by the Covid-19 induced lockdown in the last week of March. 
Source : PIB
Economy

May 30, 2020

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

INDEX OF EIGHT CORE INDUSTRIES
The Office of Economic Adviser, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) released the Index of Eight Core Industries (Base: 2011-12=100) for the Month of April, 2020.

About:

  • The growth rate of Index of Eight Core Industries for April 2020 declined by 38.1% (provisional) compared to decline of 9% (provisional) previous month of March 2020.

  • In view of nationwide lockdown during April 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic, various industries viz. Coal, Cement, Steel, Natural Gas, Refinery, Crude Oil etc. experienced substantial loss of production.

  • Production of coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, fertiliser, steel, cement and electricity contracted by 15.5%, 6.4%, 19.9%, 24.2%, 4.5%, 83.9%, 86%, 22.8%, respectively.

  • The Eight Core Industries comprise 40.27 per cent of the weight of items included in the Index of Industrial Production (IIP).

  • During 2019-20, core industries recorded 0.6% growth against 4.4% in 2018-19. 

Source : PIB
Economy

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

FOREIGN DIRECT INVESTMENT (FDI)
Foreign direct investment (FDI) in India grew by 13% to a record of $49.97 billion in the 2019-20 financial year, according to official data released by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).

About:

  • FDI into India rose 13% to a record $49.97 billion in FY2019-20 from $44.36 billion a year earlier.

  • While FDI through FIPB route/RBI’s Automatic Route/Acquisition Route rose 13% on year, total FDI that also includes equity capital of unincorporated bodies, reinvested earnings and other capital was up 18% on year to $73.45 billion, more than double from $36.04 billion in 2013-14.

  • Sectors which attracted maximum foreign inflows during 2019-20 include services ($7.85 billion), computer software and hardware ($7.67 billion), telecommunications ($4.44 billion), trading ($4.57 billion), automobile ($2.82 billion), construction ($2 billion), and chemicals ($1 billion).

  • Singapore emerged as the largest source of FDI in India during the last fiscal with $14.67 billion investments followed by Mauritius ($8.24 billion).

  • Among states, Maharashtra garnered the highest share of FDI at 30% with investments clocking $7.26 billion. Karnataka and Delhi followed with 18% and 17% share, respectively. 

Source : Economic Times
Economy

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

BAGHJAN OILFIELD
Assam Chief Minister apprised Union Petroleum Minister him about the incidents of gas explosion at oilfields in Baghjan, Tinsukia.

About:

  • Baghjan oil field is located in Assam’s Tinsukia district.

  • It is being managed by Oil India Limited.

  • The blast occurred at Baghjan oil field due to some technical problems. There was no report of any casualty in the incident.

Source : All India Radio
Geography

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

NATIONAL CAREER SERVICE (NCS) PROJECT
The Ministry of Labour and Employment under its National Career Service (NCS) project has now started offering free online “Career Skills Training” in partnership with TCS ION for its registered job-seekers.

About:

  • The Ministry of Labour and Employment is implementing the National Career Service (NCS) project for transformation of the National Employment Service to provide a variety of employment related services like job search, job matching, career counselling, vocational guidance, information on skill development courses through an on-line portal (www.ncs.gov.in).

  • Around 1000 employment exchanges including 200 Model Career Centers across the country are integrated with NCS.

  • A Special link for Work from Home Jobs and Online Trainings has been created on NCS portal Home Page to give direct access to job-seekers to such jobs.

  • NCS also offers the functionality of creation of video profiles for job-seekers in partnership with HIREMEE, a platform which provides online assessment and hiring services. Job-seekers can showcase their ability to recruiters using short video clips. All services on NCS are free. 

Source : PIB
Economy

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

ARMY COMMANDERS CONFERENCE
The Army Commanders' Conference, scheduled for April 2020 and postponed due to COVID-19 pandemic is being organised in two phases. First phase of the Conference was conducted at South Block, New Delhi from 27 to 29 May 2020.

About:

  • The Army Commanders' Conference is an apex level biannual event which facilitates conceptual level deliberations culminating in important policy decisions.

  • The biannual army commanders conference is generally held in April and October every year.

  • The commanders' conference was originally scheduled to be held from April 13-18, but it was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The second phase of the conference will take place from June 24-27, 2020. 

Source : Economic Times
Defence & Security

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

ERRA MATTI DIBBALU
A 2 MW Solar Photovoltaic Plant was commissioned at INS Kalinga, Visakhapatnam. The plant is the largest in the Eastern Naval Command (ENC) and has an estimated life of 25 years.

About:

  • INS Kalinga has taken significant strides in Green Initiatives since it's setting up in the early 1980s, including afforestation, numerous plantation drives, coastal cleanup drives and protection of the Geo-Heritage site “Erra Matti Dibbalu”.

  • Erra Matti Dibbalu also called as Red Sand Hills, a notified National Geo-heritage Monument, is situated at the outskirts of Visakhapatnam City. It is located very near to the Bay of Bengal and is one of Visakhapatnam's many heritage sites. 

Source : The Hindu
Geography

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

AGNEEPRASTHA
Foundation Stone for a Missile Park "AGNEEPRASTHA" was laid at INS Kalinga.

About:

  • ‘AGNEEPRASTHA’ aims to capture glimpses of Missile History of INS Kalinga till date. Once completed, it will be dedicated to all the Officers, Sailors and Support Staff of INS Kalinga, who have served in this premier op-support Base of the Eastern Naval Command (ENC).

  • The Missile Park has been set up with a replica of missiles and Ground Support Equipment (GSE) that showcase the evolution of missiles handled by the unit.

  • The main attraction is P-70 'Ametist', an underwater launched anti-ship missile from the arsenal of the old 'Chakra' (Charlie-1 submarine) which was in service with IN during 1988-91. 

Important Info :
  • INS Kalinga is an Indian Navy establishment reporting to the Eastern Naval Command. It is located on the Visakhapatnam - Bheemunipatnam beach road. It was commissioned on 1985.
Source : The Hindu
Defence & Security

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

MFP ITEMS IN MSP LIST
Ministry of Tribal Affairs has announced inclusion of 23 additional Minor Forest Produce (MFP) items in Minimum Support Price (MSP) list. They include Van Tulsi seeds, Van Jeera, Mushroom, Black Rice and Johar Rice among others.

About:

  • The decision enhancing the coverage from 50 to 73 items comes in view of the COVID-19 pandemic so that much needed support could be provided to the tribal MFP gatherers.

  • The Ministry has provided flexibility to States to fix MSP upto 10% higher or lower than MSP declared by the Government.

  • This was done under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme titled "Mechanism for Marketing of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) through Minimum Support Price (MSP) and development of value chain of MFP" which was launched in 2011.

  • TRIFED is the nodal agency for the implementation of the scheme. 

Source : PIB
Social Issues

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

AJIT JOGI
Ajit Jogi passed away at the age of 74 after a heart attack.

About:

  • Ajit Pramod Kumar Jogi (1946 – 2020) was a politician, who served as the first chief minister of the state of Chhattisgarh during 2000-2003. He was a member of the Janta Congress Chhattisgarh (INC) political party.

  • Earlier, he was selected for the Indian Administrative Service and served as a District collector of Indore during 1981-85.

  • He also served as member of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha. 

Source : Times of India
Polity & Governance

Current Affairs
May 30, 2020

M.P. VEERENDRA KUMAR
President Ram Nath Kovind has expressed grief on the demise of Rajya Sabha Member and former Union Minister M.P. Veerendra Kumar.

About:

  • P. Veerendra Kumar was an Indian politician, writer and journalist, who was a member of the 14th Lok Sabha.

  • He was a member of the Loktantrik Janata Dal political party and was the president of Kerala state unit of the party.

  • He was also the chairman and managing director of the Malayalam daily newspaper Mathrubhumi.

Important Info :

Mathrubhumi?

  • Mathrubhumi is a Malayalam newspaper that is published from Kerala. It is the second most widely read newspaper daily in Kerala.
  • It was founded in 1924 by K. P. Kesava Menon, a freedom fighter who led the Vaikom Satyagraha in Travancore. 
Source : All India Radio
Person in News

May 29, 2020

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

EK BHARAT SHRESHTHA BHARAT PROGRAMME
Union Ministry of HRD has decided to take forward the Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat (EBSB) programme by using innovative ways in view of the prevailing conditions of COVID 19.

During the recent meeting, following was decided:

  • To move towards digital mediums for the carrying on the activities under EBSB by each participating Ministry/ Department. To organise webinars on Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat themes for their wide dissemination.

  • To have a common repository for the Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat digital resources that can be used by every Ministry. This repository may be hosted on a common portal. 

Important Info :

Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat (EBSB) programme?

  • Origin: The programme was announced by the Prime Minister in 2015 on the 140th birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. Subsequently, the initiative was announced in the Union Budget for 2016-17.
  • Objective: To promote engagement and thereby understanding amongst the people of different states/UTs to ensure ensure a stronger united India.
  • The Ministry of Human Resource Development has been designated Nodal Ministry for co-ordination of the programme. 
Source : PIB
Education

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

DELIMITATION COMMISSION
Lok Sabha Speaker has nominated the Associate Members of Delimitation Commission for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir along with Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Manipur under Article 5 of the Delimitation Act, 2002.

About:

  • The members nominated in J&K are MoS PMO, Dr Jitendra Singh and Members of Parliament, Dr. Farooq Abdullah, Mohammad Akbar Lone, Hasnain Masoodi and Jugal Kishore Sharma.

  • Jammu and Kashmir at present has no legislative assembly as it is a Union Territory with a provision of a legislature.

  • Members of Parliament and legislative assemblies of states, for which the Delimitation Commission is set up, are drawn in as associate members to assist the panel in its task.

  • The commission will delimit the constituencies of Jammu and Kashmir in accordance with the provisions of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act 2019.
    • According to section 60 of Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act 2019, the number of seats in the Legislative Assembly of Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir shall be increased from 107 to 114.



Source : All India Radio
Polity & Governance

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

FINANCIAL STABILITY AND DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL (FSDC)
Union Finance Minister chaired the 22nd Meeting of the Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) to review the current global and domestic macro-economic situation, financial stability and vulnerabilities issues etc.

About:

  • Background: It was setup in 2010 by Indian Government as an executive body. It replaced the High Level Coordination Committee on Financial Markets (HLCCFM). The idea to create such a super regulatory body was first mooted by the Raghuram Rajan Committee in 2008.

  • Status: FSDC is not a statutory body. No funds are separately allocated to the council for undertaking its activities.

  • Objective: Its objectives are to strengthen and institutionalize the mechanism for maintaining financial stability and Enhancing inter-regulatory coordination.

  • Composition: It is chaired by the Union Finance Minister of India. The other 12 members are
    • Governor, RBI,

    • Chairman, SEBI,

    • Chairman, IRDA,

    • Chairman, PFRDA,

    • Minister of state responsible for the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA),

    • Secretary of Department of Electronics and Information Technology’,

    • Revenue secretary,

    • Finance Secretary and/or Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs;

    • Secretary, Department of Financial Services;

    • Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs,

    • Chief Economic Adviser and

    • Chairperson of the Insolvency & Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI).



  • Sub-committee of FSDC: A sub-committee of FSDC has also been set up under the chairmanship of Governor RBI. It discusses and decides on a range of issues relating to financial sector development and stability including substantive issues relating to inter-regulatory coordination.

Source : LiveMint
Economy

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

WHO FOUNDATION
World Health Organization Director General announced the creation of the ‘WHO Foundation’ that will enable it to tap new sources of funding, including the general public.

About:

  • The WHO Foundation is an independent grant-making foundation that will support WHO efforts to address the most pressing global health challenges by raising new funding from "non-traditional sources".

  • By funding high-impact initiatives and advancing strategies of innovation, effectiveness, and rapid response, it will support the global health ecosystem.

  • It is Headquartered in Geneva.

  • The foundation is legally independent from the WHO. It is established under the laws of Switzerland. 

Source : Times of India
International

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

CENTRAL INSTITUTE OF PETROCHEMICALS ENGINEERING & TECHNOLOGY (CIPET)
Central Institute of Plastics Engineering & Technology (CIPET) has been renamed as Central Institute of Petrochemicals Engineering & Technology (CIPET).

About:

  • The changed name has been registered under the Tamil Nadu Societies Registration Act 1975.

  • According to government, with changed name, now CIPET will be in a position to fully devote itself  for the growth of entire petrochemical sector.

Important Info :
  • CIPET is a premier national institution under the Union Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers.
  • It was established in 1968 by Government of India with the assistance of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) at Chennai.
Source : DD News
Science & Tech

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

INSTANT PAN THROUGH AADHAAR BASED E-KYC
The Union Finance Minister formally launched a facility for instant allotment of online PAN (permanent account number) card (on near to real time basis) on furnishing of Aadhaar details.

About:

  • This facility is now available for those PAN applicants who possess a valid Aadhaar number and have a mobile number registered with Aadhaar. The allotment process is paperless and an electronic PAN (e-PAN) is issued to the applicants free of cost.

  • In the Union Budget, 2020, Finance Minister had announced that in order to ease the process of allotment of PAN, she will soon launch a system under which PAN shall be instantly allotted online on the basis of Aadhaar without any requirement for filling up of detailed application form.”

Important Info :
  • Permanent Account Number (PAN) is a ten-digit alphanumeric number issued by the Income Tax Department.
  • PAN enables the department to link all transactions of the "person" with the department. These transactions include tax payments, TDS/TCS credits, returns of income, specified transactions, correspondence, and so on. PAN, thus, acts as an identifier for the "person" with the tax department.
  • It is mandatory to quote PAN on return of income, all correspondence with any income tax authority. From 1 January 2005 it has become mandatory to quote PAN on challans for any payments due to Income Tax Department. 
Source : Times of India
Economy

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

UNITED NATIONS “MILITARY GENDER ADVOCATE OF THE YEAR AWARD”
Women peacekeepers from India and Brazil – Major Suman Gawani of the Indian Army, a Military Observer formerly deployed with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) and Commander Carla Monteiro de Castro Araujo, a Brazilian Naval officer – have jointly won the United Nations Military Gender Advocate of the Year 2019 Award.

About:

  • For the first time, two peacekeepers will receive the award jointly for their contribution to this important cause.

  • They received the award on the occasion of the International Day of UN Peacekeepers (observed on May 29).

Important Info :
  • The United Nations “Military Gender Advocate of the Year Award” was created in 2016.
  • It recognizes the dedication and effort of an individual military peacekeeper in promoting the principles of UN Security Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security in a peace operation context. 
Source : All India Radio
Awards

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

LARRY KRAMER
Larry Kramer, an author, playwright and film producer who helped shape U.S. healthcare policy with his early advocacy of a national response to AIDS when it first emerged in the 1980s, died at the age of 84.

About:

  • Laurence David Kramer (1935 – 2020) was an American playwright, author, film producer, public health advocate, and LGBT rights activist.

  • He co-founded the Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC), which has become the world's largest private organization assisting people living with AIDS.

  • His political activism continued with the founding of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) in 1987, an influential direct action protest organization with the aim of gaining more public action to fight the AIDS crisis.

  • Kramer, whose works include the award-winning 1985 play, “The Normal Heart,” established himself as a fierce advocate for LGBTQ rights as the gay community, including many of his friends, became afflicted with AIDS, a newly emergent disease in the 1980s.

  • According to UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS, “His contribution to the global AIDS response was invaluable.” 

Source : News18
Person in News

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

CHARRU MUSSEL
An invasive mussel native to the South and Central American coasts is spreading quickly in the backwaters of Kerala, elbowing out other mussel and clam species and threatening the livelihoods of fishermen engaged in molluscan fisheries.

About:

  • The rapid spread of the Charru mussel (Mytella strigata) in Kerala may have been triggered by Cyclone Ockhi which struck the region in 2017.

  • Externally, the Charru mussel resembles the green and brown mussels (kallummekkaya in Malayalam), but is much smaller in size. Its colour varies from black to brown, purple or dark green.

  • It has replaced the Asian green mussel (Perna viridis) and the edible oyster Magallana bilineata (known locally as muringa) backwaters of Kerala

  • In Ashtamudi Lake, the Charru mussel had established breeding populations in 2018 and 2019, acquiring the moniker ‘varathan kakka’ (alien mollusc). 

Important Info :
  • The term mussel is used for several families of bivalve mollusks inhabiting lakes, rivers, and creeks, as well as intertidal areas along coastlines worldwide. The mussel's external shell is composed of two valves that protect it from predators and desiccation. 
Source : The Hindu
Environment

Current Affairs
May 29, 2020

HERBAL ROADS PROJECT
Uttar Pradesh government will develop 800 km roads as Herbal roads in the state.

About:

  • These herbal roads will have medicinal and herbal trees – like Peepal, Neem, Sehjan along with other herb varieties like Brahmi, Ashvagandha and Jatrofa – along with the land on their both sides.

  • These plants will provide raw material for the medicines and will also help in curbing the erosion of land.

  • These 800 kilometer roads will be along national and state highways passing through state and the herbal garden along with them will keep air-borne, bacterial and other diseases at bay. 

Source : All India Radio
Environment

May 28, 2020

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

WORKING MECHANISM FOR CONSULTATION & COORDINATION ON INDIA-CHINA BORDER AFFAIRS (WMCC)
India and China have activated the “working mechanism” at the diplomatic level alongside the military-to-military conversation taking place at the field level to “dis-engage” and “de-escalate” the situation.

About:

  • The “Working Mechanism for Consultation & Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC)” was established in January 2012 after border talks between then National Security Adviser (NSA) Shivshankar Menon and his Chinese counterpart Dai Bingguo.

  • It is headed by joint secretary-level officials from both sides. They are entrusted to help the special representative for boundary talks, a position currently held by NSA Ajit Doval.

  • These officials have had 14 meetings since 2012, the last one in July 2019, and meet more frequently than the special representatives. 

Source : Indian Express
International

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

OPERATION WARP SPEED
The US President Donald Trump's administration has launched a program called Operation Warp Speed.

About:

  • Operation Warp Speed is a public–private partnership, initiated by the Federal Government of the United States, to facilitate and accelerate the development of COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics.

  • It is an interagency program that includes components of the Department of Health, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the National Institutes of Health and private firms.

Source : Times of India
Health

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

HEATWAVE
For the past five days, Rajasthan, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra have been experiencing severe to very severe heatwave conditions with Churu in Rajasthan reporting 50 degrees on Tuesday.

About:

  • Heatwaves occur over India between March and June.

  • Meteorologists declare a heatwave event when the maximum (day) temperature for a location in the plains crosses 40 degrees Celsius. Over the hills, the threshold temperature is 30 degrees Celsius.

  • When the day temperature jumps by 4 to 5 degrees above the normal maximum temperature of a location, it is declared as a heatwave.

Important Info :

Does all of India experience heatwave conditions?

  • Heatwaves are common over the Core Heatwave Zone (CHZ) — Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi, West Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Vidarbha in Maharashtra, parts of Gangetic West Bengal, Coastal Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
  • However, the regions in the extreme north, northeast and southwestern India are lesser prone to heatwaves. 
Source : Indian Express
Disaster Management

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

MONTENEGRO
Less than two months after detecting its first infection, Montenegro is the first country in Europe to declare itself coronavirus-free.

About:

  • Montenegro is a country of South and Southeast Europe on the coast of the Balkans.

  • It borders Bosnia-Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast, Kosovo to the east, Albania to the southeast, the Adriatic Sea to the southwest, and Croatia to the west.

  • Its capital is Podgorica.

  • Montenegro is a founding member of the Union for the Mediterranean. It is also in the process of joining the European Union.

  • The largest lake in Montenegro and the Balkans is Lake Scutari.

Source : Times of India
International

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

KARNATAKA STATE HEALTH REGISTER
In a first of its kind initiative in the Country, Karnataka government will soon launch a State Health Register project to maintain the health database of all its citizens.

About:

  • The Karnataka State Health Register will be a robust and standardized health repository of all the citizens.

  • This will not only help the government to provide better health care, but will also help efficient resource allocation, management and better implementation of various citizen centric schemes in the state.

  • This project will be implemented first in Chikkaballapur district on experimental basis.

Source : All India Radio
Health

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

CENTRAL INSTITUTE OF PLASTICS ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (CIPET)
Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology (CIPET) will take up Research and Development initiatives in the areas of Health Care, like Manufacturing and Certifying PPE to deal with COVID-19 pandemic.

About:

  • Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology (CIPET) functions under the Ministry of Chemicals and fertilizers.

  • It was established in 1968 by Government of India with the assistance of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) at Chennai.

  • The main objective of setting up of the institute was to develop manpower in different disciplines of Plastics Engineering & Technology.

Source : All India Radio
Science & Tech

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

NEW DEVELOPMENT BANK (NDB)
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman attended the Special Board of Governors meeting of the New Development Bank (NDB) through video conferencing in New Delhi. The meeting also witnessed the election of Mr Marcos Troyjo from Brazil as the new President of the Developmental Bank.

About:

  • The New Development Bank (NDB), formerly referred to as the BRICS Development Bank, is a multilateral development bank established by the BRICS states (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

  • Location: The bank is headquartered in Shanghai, China. The first regional office of the NDB is in Johannesburg, South Africa.

  • History: During the sixth BRICS Summit in Fortaleza (2014), the leaders signed the Agreement establishing the New Development Bank (NDB). The Bank formally came into existence as a legal entity in 2015.

  • Capital: The initial authorized capital of the bank is $100 billion divided into 1 million shares having a par value of $100,000 each. 

Important Info :

Voting power?

  • Bank’s Articles of Agreement specify that all members of the United Nations could be members of the bank, however the share of the BRICS nations can never be less than 55% of voting power.
  • The Agreement on the NDB specifies that the voting power of each member will be equal to the number of its subscribed shares in the capital stock of the bank. 
Source : All India Radio
International

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

PAK DA
Russia has now started constructing its first strategic stealth bomber, capable of delivering nuclear weapons, under the Perspective Aviation Complex for Long-Range Aviation (PAK DA) programme.

About:

  • The strategic stealth bomber, the second 5th Generation combat aircraft from Russia after the Sukhoi Su-57 supersonic fighter, will eventually replace the currents set of strategic bombers Tupolev Tu 22, Tu-95 and Tu-160.

  • The PAK DA bomber will use the latest technologies and materials to reduce its radar signature, making it invisible to the enemy.

  • The first test flight of the PAK DA bomber is likely to take place in late 2021 or early 2022. The bomber is expected to join the Russian Aerospace Force only by 2028 0r 2029 after rigorous testing and development.

  • The aircraft PAK DA, will compete with the U.S. B-2 strategic stealth bomber which entered service in 1997. China is also developing its own stealth bomber - the Xian H-20. 

Source : Times of India
International

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF UN PEACEKEEPERS
International Day of UN Peacekeepers 2020 will be observed on May 29. The theme for this year’s Day is “Women in Peacekeeping: A Key to Peace” to help mark the 20th anniversary of the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security.

About:

  • Date of observance: May 29.

  • Why may 29: The first UN peacekeeping mission was established on 29th May 1948, when the Security Council authorized the deployment of a small number of UN military observers to the Middle East.

  • Objective of the day: To pay tribute to the invaluable contribution by the uniformed and civilian personnel and to honour more than 3,800 peacekeepers who have lost their lives while rendering peacekeeping services. 

Source : United Nations
International

Current Affairs
May 28, 2020

SPORTS AUTHORITY OF INDIA (SAI)
Sports Authority of India (SAI) has deposited 30,000 rupees each as out of pocket allowance in accounts of 2,749 Khelo India athletes.

About:

  • The Sports Authority of India (SAI) is the apex national sports body of India for the development of sport in India.

  • Established in: 1984.

  • Headquarters: Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium (Delhi).

  • Parent agency: Department of Sports, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports.

Source : All India Radio
Sports
Load More...