UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS+PIB | PRELIMS & MAINS 2020 | 23rd April

Spread the love

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.

If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.– Vincent Van Gogh

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.

Border Roads Organisation (BRO)

      HEADLINES:

BRO builds 484-meter permanent bridge connecting Kasowal enclave in Punjab with rest of the country

      WHY IN NEWS:

Hot from PIB !

MINISTRY? :- Ministry of Defence
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1:3:Bridges:Infrastructure

      ISSUE: 

Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has constructed and opened a new permanent bridge on the river Ravi connecting Kasowal enclave in Punjab to the rest of the country much ahead of its schedule.

The pontoon bridge (A pontoon bridge, also known as a floating bridge, uses floats or shallow-draft boats to support a continuous deck for pedestrian and vehicle travel. ) used to be dismantled every year prior to the Monsoon or else it would have got washed away in the strong currents of the river.

  • This meant thousands of acres of fertile land across the river could not be tilled by farmers during the Monsoon.
  • Border Roads Organisation conceived and planned for a permanent bridge.

ABOUT BRO :

  • The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) develops and maintains road networks in India’s border areas and friendly neighboring countries.
  • Officers from the Border Roads Engineering Service (BRES) and personnel from the General Reserve Engineer Force (GREF) form the parent cadre of the Border Roads Organisation.
  • It is also staffed by officers and troops drawn from the Indian Army’s Corps of Engineers on extra regimental employment (on Deputation).

During Peace

  1. To Develop & Maintain the Operational Road Infrastructure of General Staff (GS) in the Border Areas.
  2. To Contribute to the Socio-Economic Development of the Border States.

During War

  1. To Develop & Maintain Roads to Keep Line of Control through in Original Sectors and Re-deployed Sectors.
  2. To Execute Additional Tasks as laid down by the Govt Contributing to the War Effort.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

The 484-meter bridge was built by 141 Drain Maintenance Coy of 49 Border Roads Task Force (BRTF) of Project Chetak.

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

Anthurium : a flower with high market value !

      HEADLINES:

NIF boosts new varieties of Anthurium, a flower with high market value, by lady innovator from Kerala

      WHY IN NEWS:

Hot from PIB !

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Flora

      ISSUE: 

D Vasini Bai, a women innovator from Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, has developed ten varieties of Anthuriuma flower with high market value, by cross-pollination.

ANTHURIUM :

Anthurium (Anthurium spp.) is a vast group of beautiful blooming plants available in a wide range of colors.

  • The plants of the varieties are having high demands due to its use as indoor decorative plants.
  • The innovator has been propagating it through cuttings & seeds and supplying some plants and flowers throughout the country, but she was unable to meet the demand due to the time-consuming technique of propagation method.
  • Therefore, the National Innovation Foundation-India has facilitated mass multiplication and large scale production of four highly demanded varieties through tissue culture technique at the Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR), Bangalore, for the diffusion of the varieties in similar agroclimatic zones of the country.
  • Anthurium is one of the best domestic flowering plants in the world.
  • They are beautiful but also purify the surrounding air and remove harmful airborne chemicals like formaldehyde, ammonia, toluene, xylene, and allergens.
  • Its importance of removing toxic substances from the air, NASA has placed it in the list of air purifier plants.

The uniqueness of these varieties developed by D Vasini Baiare large and medium-size flowers with uncommon color combinations of spathe and spadix (viz. light and dark orange, magenta, green and rose color combination, dark red and white colors).

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

She sells the Anthurium flowers and plants to local florists as well as in cities like Pune and Mumbai at an average price of rupees 60-75 per flower.

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

Microreactor produces uniform size of nanoparticles

      HEADLINES:

Microreactor developed by ARI produces uniform size of nanoparticles — a major requirement in biomedical technology

      WHY IN NEWS:

Hot from PIB !

MINISTRY? :- Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Science and Technology

      ISSUE: 

Scientists from Pune based Agharkar Research Institute (ARI), an autonomous institute under the Department of Science & Technology (DST), Govt. of India have developed a microreactor that that can produce large quantities of uniform size of nanoparticles, thus serving a major requirement in biomedical technology.

RESEARCH FINDINGS:

  • The device could synthesize metal, semiconductor, and polymer nanoparticles by continuous flow active microreactor.
  • The parameters such as concentration of reactants, flow rate, agitation, reaction temperature as well as time, determined the size of nanoparticles and their distribution.
  • They further derived a mathematical equation using dimensional analysis to predict process parameters accurately for achieving true monodispersity (maintaining a uniform size of nanoparticles).

CHALLENGES:

  • Nanoparticles possess unique size-dependent properties, which make them useful in biomedical technology but difference in their sizes which arises due to conventional methods of synthesizing them, reduces their efficiency.
  • Maintaining a uniform size of the nanoparticles is a challenge faced by the biomedical industry.
  • Besides, these methods use multiple reagents, are time consuming and produce toxic by-products.

 

Figure a) Schematic of the microreactorFigure b) Optical image microreactor

It is observed that monodispersed silver nanoparticles show significant improvement in effectivity as an antimicrobial agent.

  • Monodispersed chitosan and alginate nanoparticles display very high drug entrapment, sustained-release rate, and are biocompatible.
  • They could be passively internalized in the cells due to the uniform and small size.
Polymer coated cadmium-telluride quantum dots possess size-tunable fluorescence, high quantum efficiency, and biocompatibility required for multiplexed bioimaging.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

New approach in resolving the monodispersity paradox could be of immense value to researchers working in the field of nanoscience and nanotechnology and the technique may be applied to other chemical reactions where stringent control on the reaction dynamics is vital.

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

NanoBlitz 3D

      HEADLINES:

New tool can map nanomechanical properties of materials like multi-phase alloys, composites & multi-layered coatings

      WHY IN NEWS:

Hot from PIB !

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3: Science and Technology

      ISSUE: 

Scientists fromInternational Advanced Research Centre for Powder Metallurgy and New Materials (ARCI) an autonomous institute under the Department of Science &Technology,Govt. of India in collaboration with Nanomechanics Inc., Oak Ridge, USA have jointly developed an advanced tool for mapping nano-mechanical properties of materials like multi-phase alloys, composites, and multi-layered coatings.

KEY FEATURES:

  • The tool called NanoBlitz 3D has also been found to yield excellent results on a wide range of material systems, includingglass-fibre-reinforced polymer composites, dual-phase steels, softwood and shale.
  • An important aspect of this technique is its high-throughput, with just a few hours of testing required for generating more than 10,000 data points that can be processed using machine learning (ML) algorithms.
  • It enables the performance of a large array, typically consisting of 1000s high-speed nano-indentation tests.
This provides capabilities to carry out advanced data analysis, such as identifying and quantifying the mechanical properties of constituent phases, features or components of multi-phase alloys, composites, multi-layered coatings and so on.

This, in turn, expedites the development of high-performance novel materials under an Integrated Computational Material Engineering (ICME) approach.

 

Figure: (a) SEM micrograph and (b) hardness map of NiCoCrAlY region of a thermal barrier coating subjected to 5 thermal cycles at 1100oC. (c) The mechanical phase map obtained after algorithmically identifying the different phases

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

As data science is considered as the new avenue for accelerating materials design and discovery, this technique with high-fidelity and high-throughput can greatly contribute to this new paradigm.

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

 VidyaDaan 2.0

      HEADLINES:

Union HRD Minister launches national program VidyaDaan 2.0 for inviting e-learning Content contributions in New Delhi

      WHY IN NEWS:

The Union Human Resource Development Minister Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal’Nishank’ e-launched VidyaDaan 2.0 program for inviting e-learning content contributions in New Delhi today .

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Human Resource Development
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1:3: Human resource development :Education

      ISSUE: 

VidyaDaan is a common national programme to develop and contribute e-learning content and a chance to be recognized nationally – Union HRD Minister

KEY FACTS

  • Content to be used on DIKSHA app to help millions of children across the country to continue their learning anytime and anywhere .
  • The programme has been launched due to the increasing requirement  for  e-learning content for students(both school and higher education) especially  in the  backdrop of situation arising out of Covid- 19 and also due to  the urgent need to integrate digital education with schooling to augment learning.
  • The DIKSHA Platform of MHRD has been operating since September 2017 with 30+ States/UTs leveraging DIKSHA for augmenting teaching and learning processes.
  • With the unprecedented crisis due to the spread of the Novel Coronavirus and Covid-19 impacting upon school and higher education in many different ways, it is the right time and opportunity for all user states/UTs to strengthen their e- learning content for school and higher education on DIKSHA and leverage its potential use by students and teachers of your states/UTs.
  • Contributions can be made by educationists, subject experts, schools, colleges, Universities, Institutes, government and non-government organisations, individuals, etc.
  • The content will be used on the DIKSHA app to help millions of children across the country to continue their learning anytime and anywhere.
VidyaDaan has a content contribution tool that provides a structured interface for the contributors to register and contribute different types of content (such as, explanation videos, presentations, competency-based items, quizzes etc.), for any grade (from grade 1 to 12), for any subject as specified by the states/UTs.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

VidyaDaan is conceptualised as a common national program for individuals & organizations across the country to donate/contribute e-learning resources for both school and higher education to ensure continuity of quality learning.

SUGGESTED READING : https://vdn.diksha.gov.in/ 
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897

      HEADLINES:

Promulgation of an Ordinance to amend the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 in the light of the pandemic situation of COVID-19

      WHY IN NEWS:

Attacks on health workers to attract up to 7 years in prison.The President has given his assent for promulgation of the Ordinance.

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Health:Diseases

      ISSUE: 

During the current COVID-19 pandemic, there have been instances of the most critical service providers i.e. members of healthcare services being targeted and attacked by miscreants, thereby obstructing them from doing their duties.

BACKGROUND:

  • Members of the Medical community, even as they continue to perform relentlessly round the clock and save human lives, have unfortunately become the most vulnerable victims as they have been perceived by some as carriers of the virus.
  • This has led to cases of their stigmatization and ostracization and sometimes worse, acts of unwarranted violence and harassment.
  • Such a situation tends to hamper the medical community from performing their duties to their optimum best and maintaining their morale, which is a critical need in this hour of national health crisis.
  • While healthcare service personnel are duty bound to serve without discrimination, the cooperation and support from society is a fundamental need for them to perform their duties with confidence.
  • Several States have enacted special laws to offer protection to doctors and other medical personnel in the past.
  • However, Covid-19 outbreak has posed a unique situation where harassment of the healthcare workforce and others working to contain the spread of the disease has been taking place at all fronts, in various places including even cremation grounds.

FORBIDDEN RULES:

  • The existing state laws do not have such a wide sweep and ambit.
  • They generally do not cover harassment at home and workplace and are focused more on physical violence only.
  • The penal provisions contained in these laws are not stringent enough to deter mischief mongering.

THE NEW ORDINANCE:

  • In this context, the Union Cabinet in its meeting held on 22nd April 2020 has approved promulgation of an Ordinance to amend the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 to protect healthcare service personnel and property including their living/working premises against violence during epidemics.
  • The Ordinance provides for making such acts of violence cognizable and non-bailable offences and for compensation for injury to healthcare service personnel or for causing damage or loss to the property in which healthcare service personnel may have a direct interest in relation to the epidemic.
  • The current Ordinance is intended to ensure that during any situation akin to the current pandemic, there is zero tolerance to any form of violence against healthcare service personnel and damage to property.

Battle ready: Medics performing a mock drill in Ernakulam district of Kerala on Wednesday.

PUNISHMENT :

  • Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, making acts of violence against medical staff a cognisable and non-bailable offence and to provide compensation for injury to healthcare personnel or for damage or loss to property.
  • The ordinance proposes that in cases of attacks on healthcare workers, the investigation will be completed within 30 days and the final decision arrived at within one year.
  • The punishment for such attacks will be three months to five years and the fine ₹50,000 to ₹2 lakh.
  • In severe cases, where there are grievous injuries, the punishment will be six months to seven years and the fine ₹1 lakh to ₹5 lakh.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • Healthcare service personnel include public and clinical healthcare service providers such as doctors, nurses, paramedical workers and community health workers; any other persons empowered under the Act to take measures to prevent the outbreak of the disease or spread thereof; and any persons declared as such by the State Government, by notification in the Official Gazette.
  • The penal provisions can be invoked in instances of damage to property including a clinical establishment, any facility identified for quarantine and isolation of patients, mobile medical units and any other property in which the healthcare service personnel have direct interest in relation to the epidemic.
  • The amendment makes acts of violence cognizable and non-bailable offences.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

 Let us ‘Discuss’

      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

 

Subcribe now for DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC and many more updates !

 

 


Spread the love

You have successfully subscribed to the newsletter

There was an error while trying to send your request. Please try again.

IASbhai will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing.