UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS| PRELIMS & MAINS | 1st May 2020

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IASbhai DAILY UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS  (THE HINDU+LIVEMINT+PIB)

Dear Aspirants
IASbhai Daily Current Affairs for UPSC is an initiative to dilute major articles from leading Newspapers in India which are most relevant to UPSC preparation –‘THE HINDU, LIVEMINT , INDIAN EXPRESS’ and help millions of readers who find difficulty in answer writing and making notes everyday. Hence we choose articles on daily basis and analyse them with respect to UPSC PRELIMS2020.

It always seems impossible until it’s done.– Nelson Mandela

HIGHLIGHT INFO:

ORANGE COLOUR: Important for Prelims.

RED COLOUR: Important for Mains.

BLACK COLOUR: Must Read !

BLUE COLOUR : Important Links/Survey.

PINK COLOUR: Reports/Themes/Summits.

“Janaushadhi Sugam” Mobile App

      HEADLINES:

Over 325000 people are using “Janaushadhi Sugam” Mobile App to access Janaushadhi kendras

      WHY IN NEWS:

Hot from PIB !

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Health:Technology: Digital India

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS look out for features , significance and the options for a layman in this application.

For MAINS at the time of crisis how do such app help our senior citizens ? Do you think more apps signifies more development ? Comment

      ISSUE: 

Amid nationwide lockdown due to COVID-19 crisis Janaushadhi Sugam Mobile App is helping people in a big way to locate their nearest Pradhan Mantri Bharatiya Janaushadhi Kendra (PMJAK) and availability of  affordable generic medicine with its price.

  • Over 325000 people are using Janaushadhi Sugam Mobile App to avail the host of benefits provided by it.

SALIENT FEATURES :

DEVELOPED BY :

  •  In order to make use of digital technology for easing the life of consumers, this mobile application for Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP)  has been developed by Bureau of Pharma PSUs of India (BPPI) under Department of Pharmaceuticals , Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers,Government of India.

AIM:

  • This facilitating the general public by providing a digital platform at the tip of their fingers, by the virtue of which they can avail a host of user-friendly options like locate nearby Janaushadhi kendra

The app will give you direction guides through Google Map for location of the Janaushadhi kendra, search Janaushadhi generic medicines, analyze product comparison of Generic and Branded medicine in form of MRP & overall Savings, etc.

OBJECTIVE:

  • In its Fight against COVID-19 Government of India is revolutionizing the face of healthcare system through notable schemes like PMBJP that have been providing over 900 quality generic-medcines and 154 surgical equipment & consumable at affordable prices for every citizen of the nation.
  •  Presently , more than 6300 PMJAKs are functioning across the nation covering 726 districts of the country.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • Janaushadhi Sugam Mobile App is available on both Android & I-phone  platforms.
  • It can be downloaded free of cost by the user from Google Play Store and Apple Store.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Microwave steriliser to disintegrate novel Coronavirus

      HEADLINES:

Microwave steriliser to disintegrate novel Coronavirus developed

      WHY IN NEWS:

Defence Institute of Advanced Technology, Pune, a deemed university supported by Defence Research and Development Organisation has developed a microwave steriliser named as ‘ATULYA’ to disintegrate (COVID-19).

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Defence
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Health:Recent innovations

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS there are some facts here ! Forget numbers and make a table in your Prelims book for such contributions.

      CONTEXT: 

‘ATULYA’ -MICROWAVE STERILISER

  • The virus gets disintegrated by differential heating in the range of 560 to 60Celsius temperatures.
  • The product is cost effective solution, which can be operated in portable or fixed installations.

  • This system was tested for human/operator safety and has been found to be safe.
Approximate weight of the system is three kilogrammes and it can be used for non-metallic objects only.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

Depending upon size and shape of various objects, time of sterilisation is from 30 seconds to one minute.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

History of river erosion in Ladakh Himalayas

      HEADLINES:

WIHG reveals 35 thousand-year history of river erosion in Ladakh Himalayas

      WHY IN NEWS:

The study by the WIHG team will help to understand river-borne erosion and sedimentation

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1:Rivers:Erosion

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS understand the formation of these land-forms and compare the erosion activities .

For MAINS what are the dominant factors responsible for sediment erosion ?

      ISSUE: 

Scientists and students from Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG), an autonomous institute under the Department of Science &Technology,Govt. of India studied rivers in Ladakh Himalaya, bringing out 35 thousand-year history of river erosion and identified hotspots of erosion and wide valleys that act a buffer zones.

KEY OBSERVATIONS :

  • The study showed how rivers in drier Ladakh Himalaya operated in longer time scales and how they responded to varying climate, an understanding of water and sediment routing,which is crucial as the country gears up its infrastructure and develops smart cities.

Wide valley of Padam, with an area of 48 square km, in the upper Zanskar, has stored a vast amount of sediments in these landforms.

  • The sediment contribution from such transient basins is significant when compared with the 4–7 km3 of sediment reportedly eroded from the entire Indus system in Ladakh since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and the 7–22 km3 from the Zanskar since last 10 thousand years.

  • In the study published in the journal Global and Planetary Changes Zanskar catchment was explored by WIHG team to understand the landform evolution in transitional climatic zone, using morpho stratigraphy  and provenance study of landforms like valley fill terraces, alluvial fans(triangle-shaped deposit of gravel, sand, and even smaller pieces of sediment, such as silt).
The identification and mapping of land surfaces, either developed upon sediment bodies or in some cases on bedrock, has been used as a means of interpreting relative chronologies in many regions.
  • Thus Padam valley is a hotspot of sediment buffering in the Zanskar.
EROSION RATES :
Presently, 0.96±0.10 km3 of sediment is stored in its terraces and fans, and since the last 32 thousand years, 2.29±0.11 km3 of sediment has been eroded by the river from Padam, giving it a specific sediment yield of 2.2×103 tons/km2 per year.
  • A study of the sediments suggested that most sediments were derived from Higher Himalayan crystalline that lie in the headwater region of Zanskar.
  • It was found out that dominant factors responsible for sediment erosion were deglaciation and Indian Summer Monsoon derived precipitation in the headwaters despite the presence of a geomorphic barrier (the deep, narrow gorge) between the upper and lower catchments of the river, and it remained connected throughout its aggregation history.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

The study by the WIHG team will help to understand river-borne erosion and sedimentation, which are the main drivers that make large riverine plains, terraces, and deltas that eventually become the cradle to evolving civilizations.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Nanomedicine to alter oxidative stress

      HEADLINES:

SNBNCBS develops Nanomedicine to alter oxidative stress for better immune power to treat viral infections including COVID-19

      WHY IN NEWS:

Scientists at S. N. Bose National Centre for Basic Sciences, Kolkata (SNBNCBS) have developed a safe and cost-effective nanomedicine that promises treatment of a number of diseases by altering oxidative stress in the body.

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Health:Diseases:Recent Innovations

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS you should be able to imagine what are nanomedicines after reading this article.Go through the research part done by the institute.

For MAINS make a note on important definitions you find and which you are not able to define .

      ISSUE: 

NANO MEDICINE:

The research may provide a ray of hope in India’s fight against COVID-19, as the nanomedicine can decrease or increase reactive oxygen species (ROS) in our body, depending on the situation and cure the disease.

Nanomedicine is the application of nanotechnology to the discipline of medicine: the use of nanoscale materials for the diagnosis, monitoring, control, prevention, and treatment of disease.

KEY FINDINGS :

  • The ability of this research for controlled enhancement of ROS in mammals raises hopes of a new potential for the application of nanomedicine in controlling virus infections, including COVID-19.
  • Animal trial for the Reduction & Oxidation processes (Redox) healing of several diseases is completed, and now the institute is looking for sponsors to start clinical trials on humans.
The medicine combines nanoparticles extracted from manganese salt with citrus extract, like from lemon.
  • A crucial combination of manganese and citrate employing tricks of nanotechnology produces the nanomedicine.
  • The artificially made nanomedicine was found to be important to maintain a balance of reduction and oxidation processes (Redox) in our body’s tissues.
  • Redox reactions in cells add or remove oxygen, and are essential for many processes such as generating energy in cells.
  • The redox reactions can also create products harmful to cells called reactive oxygen species (ROS), which can instantly oxidize lipids (fat), proteins, and nucleic acids, accelerating the ageing process.
  • However, it has to be noted that our immune cells naturally produce ROS or generate oxidative stress to kill viruses or bacteria and infected cells in our body.
Thus, controlled-increase of ROS or oxidative stress aids our immune cells to perform their natural functions more efficiently.
  • Enhancement of oxidative stress by nanomedicine in animal tissue is also commendable and finds application in curing diseases, including neonatal jaundice.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • In a trial on mice, the nanomedicine was found safe and swift.
  • The excess ROS was achieved by applying the hydrogen peroxide chemical in respiratory track through a nebulizer is advised in order to inactivate COVID-19 by breaking down the viral structure.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

IMD presents new, neutral names for future cyclones

      HEADLINES:

IMD presents new, neutral names for future cyclones in north Indian Ocean

      WHY IN NEWS:

The new names were contributed by 13 member countries of the WMO/ESCAP panel on tropical cyclones

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:IMD

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS understand how naming of the cyclones is done conventionally. What are the rules while naming cyclones.

      ISSUE: 

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) released a list of 169 new names for tropical cyclones in the north Indian Ocean region.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

CONTRIBUTIONS :

The list was also issued by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) and United Nations (UN) Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).
  • The new names were contributed by 13 member countries of the WMO/ESCAP panel on tropical cyclones (PTC).
  • The countries that contributed 13 names each were: Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

WHY NAMING IS IMPORTANT ?

  • Naming of tropical cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons is done for identification, awareness and removing confusion in case there were two cyclones in the same region.
  • Different names help disseminate warnings easily and efficiently, according to the IMD.
  • All but one name, Amphan, in the older list of cyclone names has been used till date.

THE PROPOSED NAME SHOULD BE NEUTRAL TO:

(a) politics and political figures

(b) religious beliefs,

(c) cultures and

(d) gender

OTHER CRITERIA’s:

  • Name should be chosen in such a way that it does not hurt the sentiments of any group of population around the world
  • It should not be very rude and cruel in nature.
  • It should be short with a maximum length of eight letters and easy to pronounce.
  • The panel reserves the right to reject any name, if any of the criteria above is not satisfied
The finalised names may also be reviewed during the course of time of implementation with the approval of PTC in its annual session, in case any reasonable objection is raised by any member

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • The names contributed by India included those that came from the general public as well.
  • The names of tropical cyclones over the north Indian Ocean will not be repeated. Once used it will cease to be used again.
  • The name of the tropical cyclone will not be changed if it crosses over from the South China Sea (where they are named as typhoons) into the Bay of Bengal.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Wayanad’s ginger farmers- Inchikkarans

      HEADLINES:

COVID-19 takes the spice out of Wayanad’s ginger farmers

      WHY IN NEWS:

The ginger farmers — referred to as inchikkarans by locals — migrate to Karnataka, lease about 25 to 250 acres of land to cultivate ginger

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Agriculture

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS nothing much here except facts related to ginger !

For MAINS understand the reverse migration from this piece of article . This is a wonderful example .

      ISSUE: 

The decision by the Union government to relax restrictions on the farming sector may come as a silver lining for several farmers during the nationwide lockdown.

India is a leading global producer of ginger, with around 1.7-1.8 million tonnes produced in the last three years Photo: Pixabay

 

  • The farmers — referred to as inchikkarans by locals — are in a predicament, different from what is experienced by other farmers, as they practice reverse agricultural migration.
  • They seasonally migrate to different regions in Karnataka, with each taking about 25 to 250 acres of land on lease every year for ginger cultivation.
  • The inchikkarans managed to build a sustainable and mutually beneficial agricultural system by winning the confidence of people in the oorus or village clusters where they invested in.

MAP SHOWING WAYANAD IN KERALA

Wayanad shares a border with Karnataka, where the ginger farmers go to cultivate their crops.

  • Delayed planting not only increases the risk of soil-borne diseases that is likely to be triggered with the onset of the south west monsoon, but may also result in low yield in October and November.
  • India is a leading global producer of ginger, with around 1.7-1.8 million tonnes produced in the last three years.
‘Old’ ginger demand in the local market grows from January to April during the festive season across the country.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

The state government is taking necessary measures to bring back the farmers from different parts of Karnataka who would then be quarantined for 14 days after entering their respective districts in Kerala.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

GI tag

      HEADLINES:

GI tag to Manipur black rice, Gorakhpur terracotta, Kovilpatti kadalai mittai

      WHY IN NEWS:

Both the products have been in circulation for centuries and are important to their native cultures

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1: GI Tags

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS you should know who , why and how these tags are allocated ! Names are important here . Make a table in your books and write down these products vs respective region or state .

For MAINS understand the significance and let us know what are the demerits of GI tag for others who are still in queue .

      ISSUE: 

Chak-Hao, which is a black rice variety of Manipur, Gorakhpur terracotta and Kovilpatti kadalai mittai have bagged the Geogrphical Indication (GI) tag.

SIGNIFICANCE OF GI TAG

  • Legal protection to the products
  • Prevents unauthorised use of GI tag products by others
  • It helps consumers to get quality products of desired traits and is assured of authenticity.
  • Promotes the economic prosperity of producers of GI tag goods by enhancing their demand in national and international markets.

RURAL IMPACT OF GI PRODUCTS

  • The supply chain gains reputation.
  • Increased and stabilized prices for the GI products.
  • Natural resources can be preserved on which the product is based.
  • Preservation of conventional and customary expertise.
  • Tourism gets boosted.

WHO REGULATES GI ?

Geographical Indications are covered as a component of intellectual property rights (IPRs) under the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property.

INTERNATIONAL LEVEL

GI is governed by the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO’s) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

NATIONAL LEVEL

  • In India, Geographical Indications registration is administered by the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 which came into force with effect from September 2003.
  • The first product in India to be accorded with GI tag was Darjeeling tea in the year 2004-05.

DURATION OF GI TAG

A GI is registered for an initial period of ten years, which may be renewed from time to time.

CHAK-HAO :

Quinoa Black Rice Grain, High In Protein, Rs 150 /kilogram, Queens ...

  • Chak-Hao, a scented glutinous rice which has been in cultivation in Manipur over centuries, is characterised by its special aroma.
  • It is normally eaten during community feasts and is served as Chak-Hao kheer.
Chak-Hao has also been used by traditional medical practitioners as part of traditional medicine.
  • According to the GI application filed, this rice takes the longest cooking time of 40-45 minutes due to the presence of a fibrous bran layer and higher crude fibre content.

TERRACOTTA WORK OF GORAKHPUR:

  • The terracotta work of Gorakhpur is a centuries-old traditional art form, where the potters make various animal figures like, horses, elephants, camel, goat and ox with hand-applied ornamentation.

Expertly crafted: Gorakhpur has a centuries-old tradition of terracotta art.T. SingaravelouT. Singaravelou
  • Some of the major products of craftsmanship include the Hauda elephants, Mahawatdar horse, deer, camel, five-faced Ganesha, singled-faced Ganesha, elephant table, chandeliers and hanging bells.

KOVILPATTI KADALAI MITTAI :

Kovilpatti kadalai Mittai / Pea Nut Candy 250g: Amazon.in: Grocery ...

Kovilpatti kadalai mittai is manufactured in Kovilpatti and adjacent towns and villages in Thoothukudi district.(TN)
  • “This product has a long shelf life and has a huge export potential,” .
  • Kovilpatti kadalai mittai is a candy made of peanuts held together with glistening syrup, and topped with wisps of grated coconut dyed pink, green and yellow.
  • It is made using all natural ingredients such as the traditional and special ‘vellam’ (jaggery) and groundnuts and water from the river Thamirabarani is used in the production, which enhances the taste naturally.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

GI tag conveys an assurance of quality and distinctiveness which is essentially attributable to the fact of its origin in that defined geographical locality, region or country.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

 Let us ‘Discuss’

https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/governance/india-can-move-40-districts-out-of-covid-19-lockdown-70793

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

Let us know what you think about this in the comment section.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

 

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