Daily Current Affairs and GK | 18 July 2020

2020-07-18

1. There has been a decrease in maternal mortality ratio in the country.

  • Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan informed that there has been a decrease in maternal mortality ratio in the country.
  • He said this in a special bulletin released by the Registrar General of India on maternal mortality ratio during 2016-2018.
  • Main points of this special bulletin are:
    • The maternal mortality ratio has declined by 9 points in a year, from 122 in 2015-17 to 113 in 2016-2018.
    • Rajasthan has recorded a maximum fall of 22 points.
    • Also, 19 points decline have been recorded in Uttar Pradesh, 18 points in Odisha, 16 points in Bihar and 15 points in Madhya Pradesh.
    • MMR has declined by more than 15 percent in Telangana and Maharashtra, while four states, Odisha, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat have seen a decline of 10-15 percent.
  • For this, various schemes like Janani-Shishu Suraksha Program, Janani Suraksha Yojana and Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan have been specially appreciated.
  • According to the World Health Organization, a woman's death during pregnancy or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy is called maternal death.

(Source: News on AIR)

2. By 2023, all the capitals of the North Eastern States will be connected to the rail network.

  • Recently, Railway Board Chairman VK Yadav said that all the capitals of the northeastern states will be connected to the rail network by 2023.
  • These are very important projects, which have been at the top of the railway agenda during the last five years.
  • The work of connecting the capitals of Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland and Meghalaya is in progress.
  • However, this is a very difficult project and the last phase is very difficult as it requires the construction of a large number of tunnels and bridges.
  • Also, efforts to connect each part of Jammu and Kashmir to the railways are going on at a rapid pace and the Katra-Banihal rail link project is likely to be completed by December 2022.

(Source: News on AIR)

3. The government has approved the zonal master plan of Bhagirathi eco-sensitive zone.

  • Recently, the zonal master plan of Bhagirathi eco-sensitive zone has been approved by the government.
  • The Bhagirathi eco-sensitive area notification was issued by the Ministry of Environment in 2012.
  • This will pave the way for rapid implementation of Chardham project and will also promote conservation of ecological and developmental activities.
  • Chardham Project:
    • It is a program initiated by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways for improving connectivity for Chardham (Kedarnath, Badrinath, Yamunotri and Gangotri) in Uttarakhand.
    • It is being built by the Border Roads Organization.
  • Eco-sensitive Zones (ESZ) are notified areas in India by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC), Government of India, in the vicinity of protected areas, national parks and wildlife sanctuaries.

(Source: News on AIR)

4. PM Svanidhi App launched by Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

  • Recently, the PM Svanidhi app has been launched by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • The launch of the mobile app will boost paper-less digital access to micro-credit facilities for street vendors as well as speed up the plan's implementation strategy.
  • The PM Svanidhi scheme was launched on 1 June 2020 to provide affordable working capital loans to street vendors adversely affected by the Covid-19 lockdown.
  • Disbursement of loans under PM Svanidhi has been started in July 2020.

5. 121 animals rescued in flood-ravaged Kaziranga National Park.

  • The team of the Center for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation rescued 121 animals in the flooded Kaziranga National Park.
  • Center for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC):
    • Established in partnership with Wildlife Trust of India, Assam Forest Department and International Fund for Animal Welfare.
    • It was launched in 2002 and is located near Kaziranga National Park.
    • It undertakes rescue, treatment and rehabilitation of wild animals in times of crisis in the region and other states.
  • Kaziranga National Park:
    • It is located in the flooded plain of the Brahmaputra Valley in Assam.
    • It is home to world’s largest population of the Greater one-horned rhinos.
    • It was declared a national park in 1974.
    • It has been declared a tiger reserve since 2007.
    • It was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1985.

(Source: News on AIR)

6. Indian Institute of Technology, Madras developed a portable hospital called Medicab.

  • Recently a startup has been started at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, which developed a portable hospital.
  • This portable hospital is named Medicab.
  • The modular structure can be set up anywhere by just four people within two hours.
  • Medicab, portable structures can also be used in remote locations to screen Covid-19 patients, to isolate and treat them.

(Source: News on AIR)

7. The United Nations has declared Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan chief Noor Wali Mehsud a global terrorist.

  • Recently the United Nations has declared Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan chief Noor Wali Mehsud a global terrorist.
  • The United Nations has blacklisted Mehsud on charges of participation, planning and perpetually working for the support and financing of al-Qaeda-linked entities.
  • In June 2018, Mehsud was named Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan leader after the death of former TTP leader Maulana Fazlullah.
  • The TTP was blacklisted on 29 July 2011 by the United Nations for alleged links with al-Qaeda.

(Source: News on AIR)

8. A meeting of the 15th Finance Commission was held with the ministers and officials of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

  • Recently the 15th Finance Commission met with Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri and other officials of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • Various issues including property taxation of local urban bodies were discussed in this meeting.
  • The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has recommended a 4 percent increase in transfer of funds to municipalities.
  • The Ministry also apprised the Commission about the establishment of an Advisory Group of Urban Development Ministers, which has been constituted with regional representation of six states Gujarat, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Tripura and Uttar Pradesh.

9. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy launched the expanded YSR Aarogyasri scheme.

  • Recently Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy has launched the extended YSR Aarogyasri scheme.
  • Procedures costing more than 1,000 will also be included under this.
  • Also, cancer treatment and cochlear transplant surgery have been brought under the purview of Aarogyasri.
  • Recently Andhra Pradesh became the first state to provide treatment for covid-19 under Aarogyasri.
  • Aarogyasri:
    • It is a flagship healthcare program.
    • The Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Dr. YSR Reddy started in 2007.
    • It is administered by the Arogyashri Health Care Trust.
    • The latest government of Andhra Pradesh changed the name of the scheme to Dr. YSR Aarogyasri Scheme in 2019.
    • This includes the health interests of people living below the poverty line.

(Source: The Hindu)

10. International Mandela Day: 18 July.

  • Every year on 18 July, on Mandela's birthday, an annual International Day is celebrated in his honor, called Mandela Day or International Mandela Day.
  • The day was officially declared by the United Nations in November 2009.
  • Nelson Mandela:
    • Mandela, South Africa's first black president, Nobel laureate and anti-apartheid, was a great man.
    • Nelson Mandela was born on 18 July 1918 in South Africa.
    • He had dedicated his life fighting for human rights.

(Source: Wikipedia)

11. India and US signed an MoU to initiate cooperation on the operation and maintenance of strategic petroleum reserves.

  • Recently India and the US have signed an MoU to initiate cooperation on the operation and maintenance of strategic petroleum reserves.
  • This decision has been taken at the US-India Strategic Energy Partnership meeting.
  • Union Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan co-chaired the meeting with US Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette via video conferencing.
  • Along with this, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the two countries to enhance cooperation in various fields including bio-energy, renewable energy in agriculture and high-efficiency coal technologies with low emissions.

12. A UN report on multidimensional poverty level released.

  • Recently a UN report on multidimensional poverty level has been released.
  • This report has been released by the United Nations Development Program and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative.
  • Status of India according to the Report:
    • Between 2005-06 and 2015-16, around 273 million Indians have come out of multi-dimensional poverty.
    • The number of people living in multidimensional poverty in India is based on the 2019 population data of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, according to which in 2006, India had a high number of multidimensional poor people.
  • Status of other countries:
    • In Sub-Saharan Africa, about 84.3 percent of the multiracial poor live.
    • 65 out of 75 countries have significantly reduced their multidimensional poverty level between 2000 and 2019.
    • Four countries — Armenia, India, Nicaragua and North Macedonia have halved their global multidimensional poverty value in 5- 10 years.
    • Fourteen countries have reduced multi-dimensional poverty in all their suburban areas, including Bangladesh, Bolivia, Kingdom of Eswatini, Gabon, Gambia, Guyana, India, Liberia, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nicaragua, Nepal and Rwanda.
  • The release of new data suggests that even before the Covid-19 pandemic hit, progress was being made to deal with multidimensional poverty, a progression that is now at risk.
  • Multidimensional poverty refers to various deprivations experienced by poor people in their daily lives such as poor health, lack of education, inadequate living standards, poor quality of work, threat of violence, and living in areas that are hazardous to the environment.

(Source: The Hindu business line)

 

 

 

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