Daily Current Affairs and MCQs for UPSC - October 7, 2020 (The Hindu, Economic Times, PIB)

Govt okays induction of nuke-capable Shaurya missile amid Ladakh standoff

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 National Council for Science and Technology Communications (NCSTC) is currently inviting nominations from the eligible candidates for the National Awards for Science and Technology.
  • National Award for Outstanding Efforts in Science & Technology Communication in general Rs.2,00,000/- (Rupees Two Lakh).

About the award categories

  • The National Council for Science & Technology Communications (NCSTC) Division of Department of Science & Technology (DST), Ministry of Science & Technology Government of India, has invited nominations for National Awards 2020 for Science & Technology Communication to recognize outstanding work in communication of science and technology.
  • The awards shall be presented at New Delhi at a special ceremony on the 28th February, on National Science Day, every year.

About the awards

  • The awards carrying a citation, a memento, and cash award is presented every year to an individual or an institution for outstanding contribution in the field of science and technology communication and for promoting scientific temper, which has created significant impact in the country during the last five years in 6 categories:
  • The categories are outstanding efforts in science & technology communication, which carries a cash award to of Rupees five lakh, science & technology communication through print media including books and magazines, science & technology popularization among children, translation of popular science & technology literature, science & technology communication through innovative and traditional methods, science & technology communication in electronic medium with the last 5 categories having a cash amount of Rupees 2 lakhs each.
  • The awards are conferred annually and are open to all Indian citizens above 35 years of age as well as to institutions registered in India or created by the Central/ State governments/ Union Territories recommended in writing by a competent authority.

Source: PIB.

M.A. Ganapathy to head Bureau of Civil Aviation Security

Focus: GS3.

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


Context

  • The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet announced IPS officer M.A. Ganapathy as the new Director General of the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) — the security watchdog for the aviation sector.
  • Ganapathy is an IPS officer of the 1986 batch and was overseeing airport security, CISF, for the past three years.

About Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS)

  • The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) is an attached office of the Ministry of Civil Aviation (India).
  • It is the regulatory authority for civil aviation security in India.
  • It is headed by an officer of the rank of Director General of police and is designated as Director general of Security (Civil Aviation).
  • Director General of security (DG BCAS) is the appropriate authority for implementation of Annexure 17(Security: Safeguarding International Civil Aviation Against Acts of Unlawful Interference) to Chicago convention of International Civil Aviation Organization. Director General of security (CA) is responsible for the development, implementation and maintenance of the National Civil Aviation Security Programme.

Source: Hindustan Times.

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Govt appoints Ashima Goyal, Shashanka Bhide and Jayant Varma as new MPC members

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.


Context

  • The government has appointed three members to the monetary policy committee, completing the appointment process of the crucial panel that decides interest rates. 
  • According to a notification, Ashima Goyal, Shashanka Bhide and Jayanth R Varma will be the three nominees on the committee.

Background

  • The three seats have been vacant since the term of the previous members: Chetan Ghate, Pami Dua and Ravindra Dholakia whose term ended in September 22, 2020.
  • All three members, who have been appointed for a period of four years i.e. till October 2024, will join RBI governor Shaktikanta Das, deputy governor Michael Patra and executive director Mridul Saggar on the committee.

About the members

  • Rules require at least four members to be present at the meeting, with at least one being the governor or, in his absence, the deputy governor, who is a member of the committee.
  • However, the lack of a quorum in the panel after the government failed to fill up vacancies for the committee's three external members on time prompted RBI to reschedule its three-day MPC meeting that was scheduled to begin on September 29.
  • The new dates for the MPC meeting will be notified shortly, the RBI had then said. 
  • The distinguished six-member committee has only one job: gauge economic variables and forecast its policy direction either through rate cuts or consecutive hikes.
  • This time, to be sure, it is widely expected to stay neutral on interest rates given that inflation remains elevated.
  • However, guidance on growth and inflation for the current financial year is keenly awaited by the market.

Source: Indian Express.

National Clinical Management Protocol

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

  • Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare recenntly released the National Clinical Management Protocol based on Ayurveda and Yoga for management of COVID-19 in the virtual presence of Shripad Yesso Naik, Minister of State for AYUSH (Independent Charge).
  • These findings, indicating potential benefits and safety of the medicines, were presented before the National Task Force on COVID 19 and joint monitoring group and subsequently developed into the protocol on the recommendations of NITI Aayog.

Background

Based on their recommendations, the Ministry of AYUSH constituted a National Task Force which, in consensus from expert committees from All India Institute of Ayurveda (AIIA), Delhi, Institute of Post Graduate Training and Research in Ayurved (IPGTRA), Jamnagar, and National Institute of Ayurveda (NIA), Jaipur, Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS), Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy (CCRYN) and other national research organisations, prepared the National Clinical Management Protocol based on Ayurveda and Yoga for management of COVID-19.

Highlights

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has emphasised following AYUSH advisories for management of COVID-19 crisis.
  • This protocol dealing with preventive and prophylactic measures is a significant step in not only in management of COVID but also in making traditional knowledge relevant to solving problems of the modern time.
  • Ayurveda can be traced to the Vedic age as a subtext of Atharva Veda.
  • The science travelled to Persia and from there to Europe and had a significant impact in the foundations of Modern medicine.

Source: AIR News.

IFFCO, Prasar Bharati sign MoU to broadcast & promote new agriculture technology & innovations

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Public Distribution System objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping.


Context

  • Prasar Bharati and Indian Farmers Fertilizer Cooperative Limited, IFFCO have signed a MoU to broadcast and promote new agriculture technology and innovations.
  • According to the agreement, DD Kisan will broadcast various innovative techniques being adopted in agriculture field in easy language through 30 minutes program series for the benefit of farmers.

Objective

  • To make the farmers Atmanirbhar, it is necessary that these new agriculture techniques and their implementation should be explained to the farmers.
  • The MoU will help in achieving this objective.
  • IFFCO’s innovations will be shared with farmers in easy language through DD Kisan in approximate 25 episodes.

Highlights

  • Through this medium the information will be shared with the farmers in an easy language.
  • These programs will also be broadcast through digitial medium so that the young farmers can benefit from the initiative.
  • IFFCO has prepared alternative of Urea which is Nanotechnology based and will help farmers.
  • The agreement will help to promote the innovations of scientists done in lab and the experiment conducted by farmers in the field which will help the young farmers.

Source: AIR News.

India, Myanmar agree to work towards operationalization of Sittwe Port in first quarter of 2021

Focus: GS3.

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


Context

  • India and Myanmar have agreed to work towards the operationalization of the Sittwe port in the Rakhine state in the first quarter of 2021.
  • The announcement came post conclusion of the two-day visit of Indian Army Chief General MM Naravane and Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla to Myanmar.

Background

The Indian delegation also presented 3000 vials of Remdesivir to the State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, as a symbol of cooperation between the countries to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

Highlights

  • Both sides agreed to further strengthen their partnership in borderd security connectivity projects, capacity building, power and energy.
  • They also agreed to deepen the economic and trade ties, further facilitate people to people and cultural exchanges and broad-base their defense exchanges across all the three services.
  • They also discussed the progress in the ongoing Indian-assisted infrastructure projects such as the Trilateral Highway and the Kaladan Multi-Modal Transit Transport Project.
  • India announced a grant of two million US Dollars for the construction of the border haat bridge at Byanyu/Sarsichauk in Chin State that will provide increased economic connectivity between Mizoram and Myanmar.  

Source: AIR News.

Production Linked Incentive Scheme (PLI) for Large Scale Electronics Manufacturing

Focus: GS3.                                

Topic: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.


Context

  • The domestic electronics hardware manufacturing sector faces lack of a level playing field vis-à-vis competing nations.
  • The sector suffers disability of around 8.5% to 11% on account of lack of adequate infrastructure, domestic supply chain and logistics; high cost of finance; inadequate availability of quality power; limited design capabilities and focus on R&D by the industry; and inadequacies in skill development. 

Objective

The vision of National Policy on Electronics 2019 (NPE 2019) is to position India as a global hub for Electronics System Design and Manufacturing (ESDM) by encouraging and driving capabilities in the country for developing core components and creating an enabling environment for the industry to compete globally. 

About the scheme

  • The Scheme would tremendously boost the electronics manufacturing landscape and establish India at the global level in electronics sector. 
  • The scheme shall extend an incentive of 4% to 6% on incremental sales (over base year) of goods manufactured in India and covered under target segments, to eligible companies, for a period of five (5) years subsequent to the base year as defined. 
  • The Scheme is open for applications for a period of 4 months initially which may be extended.
  • Support under the Scheme shall be provided for a period of five (5) years subsequent to the base year.
  • The Scheme will be implemented through a Nodal Agency which shall act as a  Project Management Agency (PMA) and be responsible for providing secretarial, managerial and implementation support and carrying out other responsibilities as assigned by MeitY from time to time.

Source: AIR News.

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Test your Knowledge

  1. Consider the following statements wrt Krishna and Godavari river management boards:
  • Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) is an autonomous body established as per Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Act, 2014.
  • It is under the administrative control of Ministry of Water Resources to manage and regulate the waters in Krishna Basin in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
  • The headquarters of the Krishna River Management Board shall be at Amaravati.

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

  • The headquarters of the Krishna River Management Board shall be at Hyderabad.

  1. The Nobel Prize for Medicine or Physiology for the discovery of?

     A. Cancer
     B. Hepatitis C Virus
     C. HIV AIDS
     D. COVID-19

Solution: B

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