Current Affairs Today 9th July 2020-Download in PDF

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Current Affairs Today – 9th July 2020

NEWS AT A GLANCE

  1. L&T Infrastructure Finance Company Ltd (LTIFCL) has received USD 50 million from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), for funding Renewable Energy projects in the country.
  2. The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved a new pan India Central Sector Scheme under Agriculture Infrastructure Fund.
  3. Union Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Harsh Vardhan and Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar released the ‘Guidelines for Evaluation of Nano-based Agri-input and food products in India’ on 7 July 2020.
  4. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is to deliver the inaugural address on the first day of India Global Week 2020.
  5. For three Public Sector General Insurance Companies, the Union Cabinet under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved a capital infusion of Rs 12,450 crore on 8th July 2020.
  6. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik unveiled Bhubaneswar Land Use Intelligence System (BLUIS) which would monitor changes in all government lands in Odisha by leveraging high-resolution satellite imagery.
  7. In Uttar Pradesh, Guru Purnima is being celebrated across the state. This is the festival of showing respect by disciples to their mentors.
  8. According to the World Health Organisation’s (WHO), South-East Asian Region (SEAR) office, Maldives and Sri Lanka were verified for having eliminated measles and rubella.
  9. ‘Digital Haat‘platform has been launched by the government of Bangladesh for online sale and purchase of sacrificial animals ahead of the festival of Eid-Ul-Azha.
  10. The fourth edition of the virtual Ministerial on Climate Action was co-chaired by European Union, China and Canada.
  11. Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for data exchange between the two organizations.
  12. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and US Agency for International Development (USAID) have partnered on 7th July 2020 to increase India- US collaboration for clean energy development.
  13. On 8th July 2020, an agreement has been signed between the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research- Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (CSIR-IGIB) and IIT Alumni Council.
  14. The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) has extended the term of Justice Bansi Lal Bhat as the acting chairperson of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) by three months.
  15. Luxury Ride has signed singer Sukhbir Singh as its brand ambassador.
  16. Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) has signed License Agreement and Transfer of Technology (ToT) with Defence Research and Development Organisation–Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDO–DRDL) for Akash Missile Weapon System (Indian Army Variant).
  17. ‘Security and Growth for All in the Region’ –Following this vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Indian Navy began ‘Mission Sagar’ to extend India’s helping hand across the Indian Ocean.
  18. ‘Samudra Setu’ meaning ‘Sea Bridge’, In an effort to repatriate Indian Citizens from overseas, the Operation Samudra Setu was launched on 5th May 2020 by the Indian Navy.
  19. On 9th July 2020, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has e-Inaugurated 6 strategic bridges in sensitive border areas of Jammu & Kashmir.
  20. Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), in collaboration with Laxai Life Sciences Pvt. Ltd.
  21. Mylab Discovery Solutions has launched the ‘Compact XL’ system for conducting a wide range of tests, including RT-PCR tests for COVID-19.
  22. The book, titled ‘Mahaveer: The Soldier who never died’ is authored by award winning author A.K. Srikumar and his wife, Rupa Srikumar.
  23. Noted Telugu film producer Pokuri Rama Rao (brother of producer Pokuri Babu Rao) passed away in Hyderabad due to Covid-19. He was 65.
  24. Kannada TV actor, Susheel Gowda passed away.
  25. Veteran Bollywood actor-comedian, Jagdeep passed away.

NEWS IN DETAILS

BUSINESS & ECONOMY

AIIB provides USD 50 mn to L&T Infra Finance for renewable energy

  • L&T Infrastructure Finance Company Ltd (LTIFCL) has received USD 50 million from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), for funding Renewable Energy projects in the country.
  • The loan amount is first tranche of the total USD 100-million ECB (External Commercial Borrowing) loan approved by Beijing-based AIIB.
  • The fund will be used for on-lending large and mid-scale wind and solar power infrastructure projects in India.
  • Also, this is the first loan by AIIB to a non-banking financial company (NBFC) in India.

Extra Shots:

AIIB:

  • Headquarters: Beijing, China
  • Region served: Asia and Oceania
  • Membership: 102 Members
  • Main organ: Board of Governors; Board of Directors
  • Purpose: Crediting
  • Formation: 16 January 2016 (Open for business); 25 December 2015 (Entry into force Articles of Agreement)
  • Legal status: Treaty

LTIFCL

  • Headquarters: Mumbai
  • Founded: 2006
  • Parent organizations: Larsen & Toubro, L&T Finance Holdings

NATIONAL CURRENT AFFAIRS

Cabinet approved Central Sector Scheme of financing facility under Agriculture Infrastructure Fund

  • The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved a new pan India Central Sector Scheme under Agriculture Infrastructure Fund.
  • The main objective of the scheme is to provide a medium-long term debt financing facility for investment in viable projects for post-harvest management Infrastructure and community farming assets through interest subvention and financial support.

Highlights:

  • Under the scheme, banks, and financial institutions will be provided Rs.1 Lakh crore as loans to Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS), Self Help Group (SHG), Farmers, Joint Liability Groups (JLG), Marketing Cooperative Societies, Farmer Producers Organizations (FPOs), Multipurpose Cooperative Societies, Agri-entrepreneurs, Startups, Aggregation Infrastructure Providers and Central/State agency or Local Body sponsored Public-Private Partnership Project.
  • Total Outlay: Rs 1 Lakh Crore
  • Duration: 10 Years, from FY2020 to FY2029
  • Purpose: Provide medium – long term debt financing facility to entrepreneurs, start-ups, agri-tech players and farmer groups for setting up infrastructure and logistics facilities through interest subvention and financial support.
  • Beneficiaries: Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS), Marketing Cooperative Societies, Farmer Producers Organizations (FPOs), Self Help Group (SHG), Farmers, Joint Liability Groups (JLG), Multipurpose Cooperative Societies, Agri-entrepreneurs, Startups, Aggregation Infrastructure Providers and Central/State agency or Local Body sponsored Public Private Partnership Project
  • Loan Disbursement Stages: 4 Years. Rs. 10,000 crore will be disbursed in the current year (2020-21) and Rs. 30,000 crore each in next three financial years.
  • Interest subvention: 3% per annum up to a limit of Rs. 2 crore for a maximum period of seven years
  • Credit guarantees coverage: Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) scheme for a loan up to Rs. 2 crore.
  • Government of India will provide Rs.10, 736 crore as the total outflow as budgetary support.

Centre released Guidelines for Evaluation of Nano-based Agri-input, food products in India

  • Union Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Harsh Vardhan and Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar released the ‘Guidelines for Evaluation of Nano-based Agri-input and food products in India’ on 7 July 2020.
  • The Guidelines are aimed to help the policymakers and regulators to frame effective provisions for future novel nano-based products in the agri-input and food sectors of India.

Guidelines for Evaluation of Nano-based Agri-input and food products in India:

  • The guidelines will encourage the Indian innovators and industries to develop and commercialize new nano-based formulations and products in these sectors.
  • It is expected that when compared to the bulk form of chemical inputs in crops, the use of nano-nutrients can reduce nutrient run-off into ground and surface water turn. This will in can reduce environmental pollution.
  • The formulation of these Guidelines is one of the most important steps for delineating quality, safety, and efficacy assessment of the novel nano-formulations which can be commercialized.
  • These guidelines are also aimed to provide transparent, consistent, and predictable regulatory pathways for nano-based agri-input and food products in the country.
  • The initiative has been brought on board all the Departments and Ministries that deal with Nanotechnology, and nano-based products.
  • It will also pave the way for significant benefits for the mission on Doubling Farming Income by 2022 and the National Mission on Sustainable Agriculture.

PM Narendra Modi to deliver the inaugural address at 2020 India Global Week

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi is to deliver the inaugural address on the first day of India Global Week 2020.
  • Centre is to host a three-day virtual conference themed ‘be the Revival: India and a Better New World.’

Highlights:

  • India Global Week 2020 will have 5000 global participants from 30 nations being addressed by 250 global speakers across 75 sessions.
  • Other officials who will participate at the event are Dr. S. Jaishankar, Union External Affairs Minister, Shri Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Railways, and Commerce & Industry, Lt Governor of J&K, GC Murmu, Isha Foundation Founder Sadhguru, Spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, along with UK’s Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and Home Secretary Priti Patel, US Ambassador to India Ken Juster, and among others.
  • The event will feature ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ performance by Madhu Nataraj and a special 100 birth anniversary concert in tribute to the sitar maestro Ravi Shankar.

Cabinet Approves Capital infusion of Rs 12,450 crores in Three Public Sector General Insurance Companies, Process of Merger Ceased

  • For three Public Sector General Insurance Companies, the Union Cabinet under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved a capital infusion of Rs 12,450 crore on 8th July 2020.
  • This capital infusion of Rs 12,450 also includes the capital of Rs 2,500 infused by the Central Government in the Financial Year 2019-20 in these three Public Sector General Insurance Companies.
  • Out of Rs 12,450 crore, Capital of Rs 3,475 crore will be released in the current financial year; Remaining Capital of Rs 6475 will be infused later.
  • The authorized share capital of NICL will be Rs 7500 crore while Rs 5000 crore for UIICL and OICL.

3 Public Sector General Insurance Companies

  • Chennai headquartered United India Insurance Company Limited (UICL)
  • New Delhi headquartered Oriental Insurance Company Limited (OICL)
  • Kolkata headquartered National Insurance Company Limited (NICL)

Extra Shots:

NICL:

  • Headquarters location: Kolkata
  • Owner: Government of India
  • Founded: 5 December 1906
  • Chairman & MD: Tajinder Mukherjee

OICL

  • Headquarters location: New Delhi
  • Owner: Government of India
  • Founded: 12 September 1947
  • Chairman & MD: SN RAJESWARI

UICL

  • Headquarters: Chennai
  • CEO: Shri Girish Radhakrishnan
  • Founded: 18 February 1938

 STATE CURRENT AFFAIRS

Odisha to use satellite technology to prevent encroachment of government land

  • Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik unveiled Bhubaneswar Land Use Intelligence System (BLUIS) which would monitor changes in all government lands in Odisha by leveraging high-resolution satellite imagery.
  • With this, Odisha has become the first state in the country to use space technology and artificial intelligence (AI) for safeguarding government lands.
  • The aim is to prevent the encroachment of government land in the capital city of Bhubaneswar, Odisha.

Highlights:

  • Bhubaneswar Land Use Intelligence System is a geo-tagged repository of all the government lands in Bhubaneswar.
  • The new technology is introduced because the present mechanism of detection and enforcement lacks adequate transparency and accountability.
  • It is created through high-resolution satellite imagery to detect all changes taking place on government lands.
  • BLUIS is a web and mobile-based solution that will raise alarm over attempts to change the land use.
  • BLUIS will monitor changes in all government lands in Bhubaneswar by leveraging high-resolution satellite imagery.
  • This mobile application will alert the enforcement authorities of any new construction on government lands.
  • The GPS on the application will guide the enforcement staff to the exact location and the evidence of enforcement will be uploaded on the application as geo-tagged images and videos.

Extra Shots

Odisha:

  • Statehood Day: 1st April 1936
  • Capital: Bhubaneswar
  • Governor :Ganeshi Lal
  • Chief Minister: Naveen Patnaik

More than 25 crore saplings planted in UP Under Mission Vriksharopan-2020 drive

  • In Uttar Pradesh, Guru Purnima is being celebrated across the state. This is the festival of showing respect by disciples to their mentors.
  • The Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has appealed to the public to observe the festival of Guru Poornima in compliance with social distancing in view of the Covid-19 Pandemic.
  • And he planted a sapling at Lucknow on this occasion Under the Mission Vriksharopan-2020 drive.
  • The government carrying out drive of planting 25 crore saplings in state in a single day
  • Under the Mission Vriksharopan- medicinal, fruit yielding, environmental, shady, fodder, and other important plants of more than 201 species are being planted which include Ficus Religiosa, Pipal, Ficus Virens,-Pakad, Mulvari, Neem, Jamun,Arjun,Sahjan and Banyan

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Uttar Pradesh:

  • Statehood Day: 24th January 1950
  • Capital: Lucknow
  • Chief Minister: Yogi Adityanath
  • Governor: Anandiben Patel
  • State formed in: 24 January 1950
  • Literacy Rate: 67.68%

INTERNATIONAL CURRENT AFFAIRS

Maldives & Sri Lanka eliminate measles & rubella, ahead of 2023 target

  • According to the World Health Organisation’s (WHO), South-East Asian Region (SEAR) office, Maldives and Sri Lanka were verified for having eliminated measles and rubella.
  • Now, Maldives and Sri Lanka are the first two countries in the WHO South-East Asia Region to achieve measles and rubella elimination ahead of the 2023 target.
  • The Maldives reported last endemic case of measles in 2009 and of rubella in October 2015, while Sri Lanka reported last endemic case of measles in May 2016 and of rubella in March 2017.
  • The announcement was made after the fifth meeting of the South-East Asia Regional Verification Commission for Measles and Rubella Elimination, held virtually.
  • The Commission comprises of 11 independent international experts in the fields of epidemiology, virology and public health.
  • A country is verified as having eliminated measles and rubella when there is no evidence of endemic transmission of the measles and rubella viruses for over three years in the presence of a well-performing surveillance system.

Extra Shots:

Sri Lanka (Capital/Currency): Colombo, Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte/ Sri Lankan rupee

  • President: Gotabaya Rajapaksa
  • Official Languages: Sinhala and Tamil.

Malcives (Capital/Currency): Male/ Maldivian rufiyaa

  • President: Ibrahim Mohamed Solih

Bangladesh launches “Digital Haat” for sacrificial animals

  • ‘Digital Haat‘platform has been launched by the government of Bangladesh for online sale and purchase of sacrificial animals ahead of the festival of Eid-Ul-Azha.
  • The platform has been launched to save the cattle farmers and traders from financial loss amid the Corona pandemic.
  • It also aims to avoid crowding in order to stop further transmission of the COVID-19 in the country.
  • People who are interested in buying and selling of the sacrificial animals are required to register on the ‘Digital Haat’ platform which is free for use by the interested people.
  • The platform will be promoted by the Bangladesh government through its website and social networking sites at its own cost.

Extra Shots:

Bangladesh (Capital/Currency): Dhaka/Taka

  • Prime Minister: Sheikh Hasina
  • Official Language: Bengali

SUMMITS AND CONFERENCES

4th edition of the virtual Ministerial on Climate Action held

  • The fourth edition of the virtual Ministerial on Climate Action was co-chaired by European Union, China and Canada.
  • In the meeting, India was represented by the Union Environment Minister, Shri Prakash Javadekar.
  • The meeting witnessed the countries deliberating on how countries are aligning economic recovery plans with the Paris Agreement as well as the critical enabling conditions to ensure continued climate action.
  • The virtual Ministerial on Climate Action was held with prime objective of demonstrating the continued political commitment to global climate action.
  • It also aimed to further the discussions on the full implementation of the Paris Agreement under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
  • It was attended by Ministers and representatives of about 30 countries and was held virtually in view of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

AGREEMENTS AND MOU SIGNED

CBDT, SEBI signs MoU for data exchange between the organizations

  • Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for data exchange between the two organizations.
  • The MoU was signed by Smt. Anu J. Singh, Pr. DGIT (Systems), CBDT, and Smt. Madhabi Puri Buch, Whole Time Member, SEBI in the presence of senior officers from both the organizations via video conference.

Highlights:

  • The MoU marks the initiation of cooperation and synergy between SEBI and CBDT.
  • The MoU will facilitate data sharing and information sharing between SEBI and CBDT on an automatic & regular basis.
  • It will facilitate regular exchange of data between the two organizations for the purpose of carrying out their functions under various laws. The data will be shared on request and suo moto basis.
  • The MoU came into effect from the date it was signed and is an ongoing initiative of CBDT and SEBI, who are already collaborating through various existing mechanisms.
  • Under this, a Data Exchange Steering Group has been constituted for the initiative.
  • The group will meet periodically to review the data exchange status and take steps to further improve the effectiveness of the data-sharing mechanism.

Extra Shots:

CBDT: The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) is the authority vested with the responsibility of the administration of laws related to direct taxes through the Department of Income Tax.

  • Chairman: Pramod Chandra Mody

SEBI:

  • Founded: 12 April 1992
  • Sector: Securities market
  • Jurisdiction: India
  • Headquarters: Mumbai
  • Type: Statutory corporation
  • Chairperson: Ajay Tyagi

USAID & MNRE announce new partnership to develop clean energy

  • The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and US Agency for International Development (USAID) have partnered on 7th July 2020 to increase India- US collaboration for clean energy development.
  • Under the partnership, the USAID-supported South Asia Group for Energy (SAGE), a US government consortium, will provide advanced technical knowledge on clean energy development from America’s national laboratories to MNRE’s National Technical Institutions and other public institutes.
  • SAGE will provide a formal platform for collaboration on clean energy development to make MNRE National Institutions act as a powerhouse of science, engineering, and technology for India and the entire South Asia region.

Extra Shots:

USAID

  • Headquarters: Washington, D.C., United States
  • Employees: 3,893 career U.S. employees (FY 2016)
  • Agency executives: John Barsa, Acting Administrator; Bonnie Glick, Deputy Administrator;
  • Founder: John F. Kennedy
  • Founded: 3 November 1961
  • Subsidiaries: Office of Transition Initiatives, Food for Peace, Office of Inspector General, U.S. Agency for International Development

IIT Alumni Council signs Agreement with CSIR-IGIB

  • On 8th July 2020, an agreement has been signed between the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research- Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (CSIR-IGIB) and IIT Alumni Council.
  • As per the Agreement Signed, joint research work on COVID-19 will be conducted and data of COVID-19 positive patients will also be analyzed jointly by the CSIR-IGIB and the IIT Alumni Council.
  • The imaging data of 8500 patients are from the temporary COVID Care Facility at the National Sports Club of India Dome (NSCI Dome) at Southern Mumbai’s Worli.
  • The imaging data will be provided in the de-identified form by the CSIR-IGIB.

APPOINTMENTS IN NEWS

MCA extends tenure of Justice Bansi Lal Bhat as acting chairperson NCLAT by three months

  • The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) has extended the term of Justice Bansi Lal Bhat as the acting chairperson of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) by three months.
  • His extended term will begin from 15 June 2020, or until a regular chairperson was appointed.
  • Bhat was appointed as the acting chairperson of the appellate tribunal on March 15, 2020 after the completion of the term of Justice SJ Mukhopadhaya.

Extra Shots:

Ministry of Corporate Affairs

  • Officeholder: P. P. Chaudhary (Minister of State)
  • Headquarters: New Delhi
  • Jurisdiction: India

Luxury Ride Signs Singer Sukhbir Singh as its Brand Ambassador

  • Luxury Ride has signed singer Sukhbir Singh as its brand ambassador.
  • He will soon be seen in a full-fledged marketing campaign besides being leveraged across its upcoming brand and product communication initiatives.
  • Sukhbir Singh was born on November 9, 1969 in Jalandhar, Punjab.
  • He is nicknamed as Prince of Bhangra.
  • His 1st album is New Stylee, which won the 1996 Channel V Awards in three categories namely, Best Debut Album, Best Male Vocalist and Best Music Video (for “Punjabi Munde”)

Extra Shots:

Luxury Rides:

  • Headquarters: New Delhi, India
  • Co-founder and MD: Sumit Garg

DEFENCE CURRENT AFFAIRS

Akash Missile: BDL signs licence agreement & ToT with DRDO

  • Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) has signed License Agreement and Transfer of Technology (ToT) with Defence Research and Development Organisation–Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDO–DRDL) for Akash Missile Weapon System (Indian Army Variant).

Akash Missile:

  • Akash Missile is the first medium-range Surface to Air missile produced in India which can engage multiple targets from multiple directions.
  • The missile flies at a speed of nearly 860 meters per second at a maximum altitude of 18 km.
  • The Akash missile was designed and developed by DRDO and manufactured by BDL.
  • The aerial targets like jets, drones, air to surface missiles at a distance of 30 km can be targeted using Akash.
  • The missile can be launched from mobile platforms like tanks and trucks.

Extra Shots:

BDL:

  • Headquarters: India
  • Founder: India
  • Founded: 1970, Hyderabad
  • Parent organizations: Government of India, Ministry of Defence

INS Kesari covered 14,000 Km in 49 Days under ‘Mission Sagar’ to Extend India’s Helping Hand across the Indian Ocean

  • ‘Security and Growth for All in the Region’ –Following this vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Indian Navy began ‘Mission Sagar’ to extend India’s helping hand across the Indian Ocean.
  • The Mission Sagar was launched on 10th May 2020, and after 49 days, the mission was successfully completed on 28th June 2020 when INS Kesari returned to India.

Mission Sagar

  • The Mission was launched to deliver assistance to our maritime neighbors in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. Indian Naval Ship INS Kesari was deployed for the Mission Sagar.
  • On 10 May 2020, with COVI-19 related essential Medicines (including Hydroxychloroquine tablets and Ayurvedic Medicines), Medical Assistance Teams, and about 600 tonnes of food items, INS Kesari embarked for the Mission
  • Over the next 49 days, INS Kesari traveled 7,500 nautical miles, which is more than 14000 kilometers.

Highlights from Mission Sagar

  • At Mauritius and Comoros Islands, Medical Assistance Teams were deployed
  • About 600 tonnes of Food Items were delivered at the Maldives
  • Special Consignment of Ayurvedic Medicines delivered at Mauritius
  • Essential COVID-19 related medicines delivered at Madagascar, Seychelles, Mauritius and Comoros Islands
  • Hydroxychloroquine delivered at Madagascar and Comoros Islands

Indian Navy Completes ‘Operation Samudra Setu’ by bringing 3,992 Indian Citizens back to Homeland

  • ‘Samudra Setu’ meaning ‘Sea Bridge’, In an effort to repatriate Indian Citizens from overseas, the Operation Samudra Setu was launched on 5th May 2020 by the Indian Navy.
  • The Operation Samudra Setu lasted over 55 days in which 3,992 Indian Citizens were brought back to their homeland by the sea route by the Indian Navy.
  • Evacuation Operation like Samudra Setu was last conducted by the Indian Navy back in 2015 during Operation Rahat when 5600 people (960 were Foreign Nationals, Remaining Indian Citizens) were evacuated from Yemen.

Naval Ships participated in Samudra Setu

  • Amphibious transport dock -INS Jalashwa, and 3 Landing Ship Tanks- INS Airavat, INS Shardul, and INS Magar.
  • Under the Operation, these 4 Indian Navy Ships have streamed more than 23,000 kilometers to bring back the Indian Citizens during the COVID-19 pandemic from Maldives, Sri Lanka, and Iran.

Operation Samudra Setu

  • The Evacuation Operation Samudra Setu began on 8th May with INS Jalashwa evacuating 698 Indian Citizens from the capital city of Maldives- Male.
  • While on 25th June, INS Jalashwa made the last evacuation drive under the operation by bringing 687 Indian Citizens back to India from Iran’s Bandar Abbas port.
  • The greatest challenge for the Indian Navy was to ensure that there was no incident of the outbreak of the COVID-19 infection on any of the onboarded ships during the entire Operation.
  • The Indian Navy has successfully completed the entire Operation by strictly taking the planned measures and safety protocols.

Extra Shots:

Indian Navy

  • Vice Chief of the Naval Staff (VCNS): Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar, AVSM, VSM
  • Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff (DCNS): Vice Admiral M. S. Pawar, AVSM, VSM
  • Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS): Admiral Karambir Singh, PVSM, AVSM
  • Headquarters: Integrated Headquarters, Ministry of Defence (Navy)
  • Founded: 5 September 1612
  • Roles: Naval warfare, Power projection, Sealift, Massive retaliation

Six Strategic Bridges in Jammu & Kashmir e-Inaugurated by Defence Minister

  • On 9th July 2020, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has e-Inaugurated 6 strategic bridges in sensitive border areas of Jammu & Kashmir.
  • All the six bridges with strategic importance along the International Border and Line of Control were constructed in record time by working in extremely difficult weather conditions and terrains by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO).

About the Bridges

  • 2 bridges out of the 6 are on the Tarnah Nallah of the Kathua district
  • In Jammu district’s Akhnoor-Pallanwala road, 4 bridges are located
  • All these 6 bridges were constructed by Borders Roads Organisation under Project Sampark
  • The length of the 6 bridges ranges from a minimum of 30 metres to a maximum of 300 metres
  • Total cost for the construction of the 6 bridges was Rs 43 crore
  • The 6 bridges are constructed by focusing on the strategic importance of the region as all these bridges will help in facilitating the movement of the

Extra Shots:

BRO:

  • Headquarters: New Delhi
  • Director General: Lt. Gen.Harpal Singh
  • Motto: Shramena Sarvam Sadhyam; (everything is achievable through hardwork)
  • Budget: 73.2 crores USD
  • Founder: Jawaharlal Nehru
  • Founded: 7 May 1960

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY CURRENT AFFAIRS

CSIR, Laxai Sciences seek regulatory approval to undertake clinical trials on Covid-19 patients, phase III clinical trial

  • Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), in collaboration with Laxai Life Sciences Pvt. Ltd.
  • Hyderabad has sought regulatory approval to undertake ‘MUCOVIN’, a four-arm randomized controlled phase III clinical trial.
  • The study is to combine and repurpose antivirals and host-directed therapies (HDTs) to address the disease-spread and pathology simultaneously.

Highlights:

  • The unique combinatorial strategy, antivirals, and HDTs, with repurposed drugs having a complementary, additive, and synergistic role, has been adopted to increase therapeutic options for Covid-19 treatment and help recover patients faster.
  • The trial will determine the safety and efficacy of the three combination drugs and a control arm with the standard of care in COVID-19 patients.
  • The 3 combination drugs are Favipiravir+Colchicine, Umifenovir+Colchicine and Nafamostat+5-ALA.
  • The clinical trial will be carried out in partnership with Medanta Medicity.
  • The trial will include a total of 300 patients in four different groups of 75 patients in the trials to be carried for 17 to 21 days including screening and treatment.
  • The study aims to target viral proteins essential for its replication and host factors that play a crucial role in the viral life cycle and contribute to the cytokine storm.

‘Compact XL’ system for covid-19 tests lauched by MyLab

  • Mylab Discovery Solutions has launched the ‘Compact XL’ system for conducting a wide range of tests, including RT-PCR tests for COVID-19.
  • This is India’s first machine to automate the manual processes of molecular diagnostic tests such as RNA/DNA-based tests including COVID-19 RT-PCR tests.

‘Compact XL’ RT-PCR system:

  • The ‘Compact XL’ RT-PCR system can test 32 tests at a time on one system and there are options to connect multiple systems on one network.
  • This system is designed to reduce the requirement for manpower, multiple systems can be networked together to achieve the throughput of 96 to 1000 plus samples per day.
  • The machine is designed to automate lab operations from sample handling to RT-PCR ready tube preparation, and do these operations in one single compact benchtop machine.
  • Compact XL is a cartridge-based machine and can test multiple samples concurrently.
  • Compact XL can be used for a wide range of RNA/DNA-based tests including COVID-19 RT-PCR tests.
  • The machine can run 32 samples at a time which can be further increased when machines are connected in a network.

BOOKS & AUTHORS

A Book Titled ‘Mahaveer:The Soldier Who Never Died’ Authored by A.K. Srikumar & Rupa Srikumar

  • The book, titled ‘Mahaveer: The Soldier who never died’ is authored by award winning author A.K. Srikumar and his wife, Rupa Srikumar.
  • The book is a patriotic story about the
  • courage and selfless love of Jaswant Singh Rawat who is one of the legendary Garhwali soldiers fought in Indo-Chinese battle of Nuranang in 1962 .
  • The book is published by Rupa Publications and represented by The Book Bakers.
  • The book portrays also a love story about two Monpa girls(Sela and Noora), and their devotion to the Indian soldier, whose devotion in turn is for the motherland.

OBITUARY

Tollywood producer Pokuri Rama Rao passes away

  • Noted Telugu film producer Pokuri Rama Rao (brother of producer Pokuri Babu Rao) passed away in Hyderabad due to Covid-19. He was 65.
  • Rama Rao, presented movies like Ranam (2006), Ontari (2008), Yagnam (2004) produced by Eetharam Films.

Kannada TV actor Susheel Gowda passes away

  • Kannada TV actor, Susheel Gowda passed away.
  • He joined the Kannada television serials in 2015 and acted in one or two Kannada films also.
  • He played a role in serial Anthapura and was looking forward to establishing himself in the Kannada Film Industry.
  • Other than an actor, he was also a fitness trainer.

Veteran bollywood actor Jagdeep passes away

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