Daily Current Affairs and MCQs for UPSC - November 26, 2020 (The Hindu, Economic Times, PIB)

Tamil Nadu Govt Announces Ban on Online Gaming Involving Betting; Rs 5,000 Fine for Violators

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.


Context

  • An ordinance to "ban online gaming" involving betting, has been promulgated by the Tamil Nadu government in the backdrop of suicides by gamers who allegedly lost money, and any violation would attract both fine and imprisonment, ranging up to two years.
  • The ordinance was promulgated by Governor Banwarilal Purohit based on a proposal from the state government, days after Chief Minister K Palaniswami promised action in this connection.

Background

  • Incidentally, Andhra Pradesh had recently banned online gaming, besides betting and gambling, while neighbouring Union Territory Puducherry wrote to the Centre seeking a similar action on such activities following the alleged suicide of a man who lost money in it.
  • PUBG Mobile Coming Back to India, Developers Have Announced.

About the ordinance

  • The ordinance promulgated by Purohit provides for provisions including "banning the persons who are wagering or betting in cyber space using computers or any communication device or resource," a Raj Bhavan release here said.
  • Palaniswami had recently said the government was taking steps to ban online games following demands from several quarters and complaints about suicides of people who lost money in such activities in the state.
  • The Madras High Court Madurai Bench is also hearing a case against online gaming.
  • Three people had allegedly died of suicide in Coimbatore this month due to heavy financial loss in the online rummy game.
  • "Due to online gaming, innocent people, mainly youngsters are being cheated and some people have committed suicide. In order to avoid such incidents of suicide and protect the innocent people from the evils of online gaming," the Government submitted the proposal, seeking amending relevant police acts, the release said.
  • Other provisions of the ordinance include punishing those found "gaming" with Rs 5,000 fine and and six months imprisonment, two years jail and Rs 10,000 fine for people who operate common gaming houses.
  • The ordinance also banned "electronic transfer of funds" used for wagering or betting, distributing the winnings, prize money and punishing those running the company which conducts online gaming by wagering and betting.

Source: Indian Express.

SpaceX Falcon 9 Launches Satellite to Monitor the World’s Oceans

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.


Context

  • The Copernicus Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite, designed to monitor oceans, was launched from the Vandenberg Air Force base in California aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
  • This is a part of the next mission dedicated to measuring changes in the global sea level.
  • Other satellites that have been launched since 1992 to track changes in the oceans on a global scale include the TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1 and OSTN/Jason-2, among others.

Background

  • The mission, called the Jason Continuity of Service (Jason-CS) mission, is designed to measure the height of the ocean, which is a key component in understanding how the Earth’s climate is changing.
  • The spacecraft consists of two satellites, one of them launched, and the other, called Sentinel-6B, to be launched in 2025.

About the satellite

  • It has been developed jointly by the European Space Agency (ESA), NASA, European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (Eumetsat), the USA’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the EU, with contributions from France’s National Centre for Space Studies (CNES).
  • According to NASA, the satellite will ensure the continuity of sea-level observations into the fourth decade and will provide measurements of global sea-level rise.
  • Since 1992, high-precision satellite altimeters have helped scientists understand how the ocean stores and distributes heat, water and carbon in the climate system.
  • Essentially, the satellite will send pulses to the Earth’s surface and measure how long they take to return to it, which will help scientists measure the sea surface height.
  • It will also measure water vapour along this path and find its position using GPS and ground-based lasers.
  • Further, the data it collects will support operational oceanography, by providing improved forecasts of ocean currents, wind and wave conditions.
  • This data will allow improvements in both short-term forecasting for weather predictions in the two-to-four-week range (hurricane intensity predictions), and long-term forecasting, for instance for seasonal conditions like El Niño and La Niña.

Source: Indian Express.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/vKy5wmk6WOAVghMuA-pnhrINNbfW9fdqiEXXpFDBABjKRf7VyyHc9nBvjeDmGOwDh81IJTnUGMc3Tv7yjJgXW1kCFNM

Delirium can predict Covid in elderly

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources, issues relating to poverty and hunger.


Context

  • A new study supports evidence that delirium can predict coronavirus infection in older patients who show no other typical symptoms of Covid-19.
  • Even beyond Covid-19, delirium is a common symptom in older adults with severe disease.
  • And in Covid-19, adults aged 65 years and older are at greatest risk of severe disease, and death.

Background

  • The researchers found that almost a third of the elderly patients had delirium.
  • A delirium diagnosis was the main presenting symptom for 16% of those patients, and 37% had no typical COVID-19 symptoms.

About Delirium

  • Delirium was the sixth most common presenting symptoms in all patients.
  • The researchers stressed the importance of including delirium on the checklist of Covid-19 symptoms.
  • Delirium is an abrupt change in the brain that causes mental confusion and emotional disruption.
  • It makes it difficult to think, remember, sleep, pay attention, and more.
  • Delirium is experienced during alcohol withdrawal, after surgery, or with dementia.
  • Delirium is usually temporary and can often be treated effectively.
  • Diseases that cause inflammation and infection, such as pneumonia, can interfere with brain function.
  • Additionally, taking certain medications (such as blood pressure medicine) or misusing drugs can disrupt chemicals in the brain.
  • Depending on the cause of the delirium, treatment may include taking or stopping certain medications.
  • In older adults, an accurate diagnosis is important for treatment, as delirium symptoms are similar to dementia, but the treatments are very different.

Source: PIB.

Maiden IN-MDL Cup for YAI Senior Nationals 2020

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources, issues relating to poverty and hunger.


Context

  • The Indian Naval Watermanship Training Centre (INWTC), Mumbai is organising the commencement of sailing activities in Mumbai harbour with the Maiden IN-MDL Cup, National Yachting Championship.
  • At the behest of the Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Karambir Singh, as Patron of the Indian Naval Sailing Association, the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) has stepped up to sponsor an annual IN-MDL Cup to promote sailing in the country. 

Background

  • The maiden IN-MDL Cup 2020 is being conducted under the aegis of the Yachting Association of India (YAI) for all Senior Olympic classes as the YAI Senior National 2020.
  • After the pandemic, this regatta will once again fill up the skyline of Mumbai harbour with vibrant sails vying for top honours in keenly contested races. 

Highlights

  • The IN-MDL Cup will see participation from 12 sailing clubs from across India.
  • INWTC(MBI), INWTC(Goa), INWTC (Hamla), Army Yachting Node, EMESC(Bhopal), EMESA, CESC, Tamil  Nadu Sailing Association, GYA, National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla, NSS Bhopal and NSN Bhopal.
  • The regatta will be held in four basic classes of boats namely the 49er Skiff, 470, Laser and the RS:X class windsurfer.  
  • It will be the first time in the history of Senior Nationals where 470 mixed class will participate and compete in the race.
  • Of particular note is the sizeable number of young girls and women participants, which hopefully will be a motivating factor for future aspirants and level out the playing field. 

Source: PIB.

Meghalaya’s Glowing Mushrooms

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.


Context

A mushroom documentation project in the forests of Northeast India has discovered a bioluminescent or light-emitting variety of mushroom.

Background

  • The new species was first sighted near a stream in Meghalaya’s Mawlynnong in East Khasi Hills district and later at Krang Shuri in West Jaintia Hills district.
  • It is now one among the 97 known species of bioluminescent fungi in the world.

About Bioluminescence in fungi

  • Bioluminescence is the property of a living organism to produce and emit light.
  • Bioluminescent organisms are usually found in ocean environments, but they are also found in terrestrial environments.
  • The colour of the light emitted by the organism depends on its chemical properties.
  • In the case of fungi, the luminescence comes from the enzyme, luciferase.
  • The green light emits when luciferans is catalysed by the enzyme luciferase, in the presence of oxygen.

Source: PIB.

Pune shows early signs of ‘herd immunity’, second wave unlikely: Survey

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources, issues relating to poverty and hunger.


Context

Close to 85% of the Pune population has developed immunity from Covid-19! A first-of-its-kind study conducted on an Indian city has concluded that majority of the population who had developed antibodies found in a sero survey conducted earlier now has developed ‘protective’ antibodies against the disease that construe as acquiring immunity.

Background

  • A sero survey is a study in which serum samples are obtained from selected populations and are tested for antibodies for a definite virus.
  • These surveys estimate the extent of spread of an infection in a large population. 

Highlights

  • The latest finding is a follow-up of a serosurvey conducted in July-August that revealed 51% of the city’s population has already been infected by coronavirus at some point of time and has developed antibodies, but the study was not supportive of concluding that the sample has also developed, ‘neutralising’ or ‘protective’ antibodies, a subset of antibodies that gives immunity from the disease in future.
  • With the first follow up study conducted in Pune to detect the presence of these subsets of antibodies in the infected person, the experts have suggested that the concept of ‘herd immunity’ might have started playing out there, especially in one of the divisions of the sero survey, the Lohianagar prabhag, where highest prevalence was infection was detected months ago.
  • As the incidence rate has fallen sharply, it indicated that the population might have developed protection cover against the disease.

Source: Financial Express.

Centre approves 28 food processing projects worth over ₹320 crore

Focus: GS3.                                

Topic: Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.


Context

  • 28 food projects worth over ₹320 crore have been approved, said Ministry of Food Processing Industries.
  • "28 projects, with project costs of ₹320.33 crore, supported with a grant of Rs. 107.42 Crores by MoFPI, were approved under the CEFPPC Scheme by the Inter-Ministerial Approval Committee (IMAC) meeting chaired by Narendra Singh Tomar, Union Minister, FPI," the ministry said in an official statement.

Background

  • These projects, spread over 10 states, are likely to generate employment for nearly 10,000 people, said government.
  • IMAC meeting through video conference to consider projects under the Scheme of Creation/Expansion of Food Processing and Preservation Capacities (CEFPPC) (Unit Scheme) under Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY) for necessary Grants-in-aid. 

Highlights

  • These 28 projects will create a processing capacity of 1237 MT daily and are spread across the states of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Maharastra, J&K, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Assam, and Manipur.
  • These 28 projects include 6 projects of north Eastern states with project costs of ₹48.87 crore supported with a grant of ₹20.35 crore by MoFPI.

Source: LiveMint.

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Test your Knowledge

  1. Consider the following statements with reference to G20:
  • It is an international forum for the governments and central bank governors from 19 countries and the European Union (EU). 
  • It was founded in 1999.
  • The aim is to discuss policy pertaining to the promotion of international financial stability.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below:

    A. 1 and 2 only
    B. 2 and 3 only
    C. 1 and 3 only
    D. AOTA

Solution: D

  1. Recently, which of the following states has promulgated an ordinance that banned online gaming in the state?

     A. Karnataka
     B. Uttar Pradesh
     C. Tamil Nadu
     D. Kerala

Solution: C

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