Daily Current Affairs and MCQs for UPSC - September 28, 2020 (The Hindu, Economic Times, PIB)

Govt notifies standards for safety evaluation of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.


Context

  • The government said it has notified standards for safety evaluation of hydrogen fuel cell-based vehicles.
  • The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has issued a notification in this regard.

Background

  • "The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has notified the Standards for Safety Evaluation of vehicles being propelled by Hydrogen Fuel cells through an amendment to Central Motor Vehicles Rules 1989 ...dated 23rd September, 2020," the ministry said in a statement.
  • This would facilitate the promotion of hydrogen fuel cell-based vehicles in the country, which are energy-efficient and environmentally friendly, it added.

Highlights

  • The motor vehicles of Category M and Category N, running on compressed gaseous hydrogen fuel cell, shall be in accordance with AIS 157:2020, as amended from time to time, till the corresponding Bureau of Indian Standard Act, 2016, specification is notified.
  • Also, the hydrogen fuel specification for fuel cell vehicles will be in accordance with ISO 14687.
  • They were notified through an amendment to Central Motor Vehicles Rules 1989.
  • These standards are also at par with the available international standards.
  • This would facilitate the promotion of Hydrogen Fuel Cell based vehicles in India.
  • Hydrogen Fuel Cell based vehicles are energy efficient and environment friendly.

Source: DD News.

National Medical Commission replaces the MCI

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 National Medical Commission (NMC) has replaced the Medical Council of India (BoG-MCI), as per information released by the Health Ministry.
  • National Medical Commission (NMC) is an Indian regulatory body of 33 members which regulates medical education and medical professionals.

About the Commission

  • It replaced the Medical Council of India (MCI) on 25 September 2020.
  • The Commission grants recognition of medical qualifications, gives accreditation to medical schools, grants registration to medical practitioners, and monitors medical practice and assess the medical infrastructure in India.
  • The NMC will have four separate autonomous boards: under-graduate medical education, post-graduate medical education, medical assessment and rating and ethics and medical registration.

Highlights

  • The NITI Aayog had recommended the replacement of MCI with NMC.
  • The decision was approved by most states and after its approval by the Prime Minister and NMC bill was passed by parliament and approved by President on 8 August 2019.
  • National Medical Commission ordinance was brought in to replace Medical Council of India in early 2019 through an ordinance issued in January 2019 by the President of India.
  • The Supreme Court had allowed the Central Government to replace the medical council and with the help of five specialized doctors monitor the medical education system in India, from July 2017.
  • The government dissolved the MCI in 2018 and Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 (102 of 1956) stands repealed.

Source: Economic Times.

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Centre for disability sports to be set up at Gwalior

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 foundation stone of ‘Centre for Disability Sports at Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh’ was laid at a function organized by DEPwD, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.
  • The Centre for Disability Sports, Gwalior will be set up at an estimated cost f Rs 170.99 crore, spread over a period of 5 years.

About the centre

  • The centre would create an improved sports infrastructure to ensure effective participation of persons with disabilities in sports activities and also enable them to compete at national and international levels.
  • The centre would aid in developing a sense of belonging in Divyangjan to facilitate their integration in society.
  • The Ministry said, the project is expected to be completed by 31st March, 2021 and it will result in employment of 140 personnel.
  • The Centre for Disability Sports will have an Outdoor Athletic Stadium, Indoor Sports Complex and Aquatic Centre having two Swimming Pools, one covered Pool and an Outdoor Pool.

Source: PIB.

First look of rapid train to run between Delhi-Meerut

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.


Context

  • National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) unveiled the first look of India's first Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) train which will run between Delhi and Meerut.
  • The first of its kind train has been designed to run at a speed of 180 kmph and its prototype is expected to roll off the production line in 2022.

Features

  • With radiating stainless steel outer body, the aerodynamic RRTS trains will be lightweight and fully air-conditioned, said a government official.
  • Each car will have six automatic plug-in type wide doors, three on each side (Business Class will have four such doors, two on each side) for ease of access and exit.
  • The RRTS trains will have transverse 2x2 seating with adequate legroom, optimized aisle width with grab handles and grab poles for a comfortable journey for standing passengers, overhead luggage rack, mobile/laptop charging sockets and on board Wi-Fi among other commuter-centric features.

Highlights

  • NCRTC will procure 30 train sets of 6 cars each for operating services on entire corridor and 10 train sets of 3 cars each for operating local transit services in Meerut.
  • Rolling stock for Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS corridor will be manufactured at Bombardier’s Savli plant.
  • The RRTS rolling stock will also have lighting and temperature control systems to enhance the passenger experience with less energy consumption.
  • The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs added that the prototype is scheduled to roll off the production line in 2022 & will be put into public use after extensive trials.

Source: LiveMint.

Fourth India-Japan Bilateral Maritime Exercise JIMEX 2020 begins in Arabian Sea

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.


Context

  • Fourth India-Japan Bilateral Maritime Exercise JIMEX 2020 begins in Arabian Sea.
  • India-Japan Maritime bilateral exercise JIMEX begins in North Arabian Sea.

Background

  • The two nations performed their fourth edition of this exercise this year.
  • Due to COVID19 situation the exercise is conducted in a non-contact at-sea-only format.

Highlights

  • JIMEX 2020 displays the high degree of inter-operability and joint operational skills.
  • JIMEX is a Maritime exercise which is conducted two year once between India and Japan.
  • The exercise was started in 2012.
  • The last edition of JIMEX was held in the year 2018 in the Visakhapatnam coast.

Source: AIR News.

Magawa

Focus: GS3.

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


Context

Heroes come in all shapes and sizes," reads an old quote and Magawa, the rat who has so far discovered 39 landmines and 28 items of unexploded ordnance, was awarded the PDSA Gold Medal, which reportedly is the highest honour for outstanding animal bravery and exceptional dedication in civilian life.

Background

  • The landmine detection rat Magawa received the PDSA Gold Medal for his life-saving work in Cambodia and became the first rat to receive the Gold Medal, which has been presented to 30 recipients to date.
  • Magawa can search the area of a tennis court in 30 minutes, something that would take a human with a metal detector up to 4 days.

Highlights

  • Magawa is an African Giant Pouched Rat – so much larger than your average pet rat – but still light enough that he would never set off a landmine by walking over it.
  • They stated that in Tanzania, a charity called APOPO has been training rats to detect landmines since the early 1990s and even today, it’s estimated that there are still 80 million landmines around the world which are lying active and unknown.
  • That’s why rats like Magawa have been trained.
  • It’s completely safe for rats like Magawa to detect landmines and they’re very intelligent animals so are easy to train.
  • Magawa began training from a young age after being bred by APOPO for this purpose.
  • Magawa has been detecting landmines for the past five years.
  • He completely ignores any scrap metal lying around and so is much faster at finding landmines than people would be.
  • He can search the area of a tennis court in 30 minutes, something that would take a human with a metal detector up to four days.

Source: Indian Express.

Bangladesh to make film on revolutionary freedom fighter Pritilata Waddedar

Focus: GS1.                                

Topic: The Freedom Struggle - its various stages and important contributors /contributions from different parts of the country.


Context

  • The government of Bangladesh is financing a film on the life of revolutionary freedom fighter Pritilata Waddedar.
  • Addressing the ‘Muhurat’ of the film in Dhaka, Information Minister Dr. Hasan Mahmud said that the film ‘Bhalobasha Pritilata’ will be based on the first woman Bengali revolutionary nationalist of the Indian subcontinent against the British regime.
  • The film is based on the novel by Selina Hossain.

About Pritilata Waddedar

  • She was a Bengali revolutionary nationalist from the Indian subcontinent who was influential in the Indian independence movement.
  • After completing her education in Chittagong and Dhaka, she attended Bethune College in Kolkata.
  • She graduated in philosophy with distinction and became a school teacher.
  • Pritilata joined a revolutionary group headed by Surya Sen.
  • She is known for leading fifteen revolutionaries in the 1932 armed attack on the Pahartali European Club, during which one person was killed and eleven injured.
  • The revolutionaries torched the club and were later caught by the British police.
  • To avoid arrest, Pritilata consumed cyanide and died.

Source: AIR News.

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Test your Knowledge

  1. Consider the following statements wrt FAME Scheme:
  1. The FAME (Faster Adoption and Manufacture of (Hybrid and) Electric Vehicles) was launched by the Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises in 2015.
  2. The objective is to incentivize the production and promotion of eco-friendly vehicles including electric vehicles and hybrid vehicles.
  3. It is not a part of the National Electric Mobility Plan.

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: A

  • It is a part of the National Electric Mobility Plan.

  1. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India is a:

   A. Constitutional Body
   B. Statutory Body
   C. Constituted by executive action
   D. Private body

Solution: B

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