Daily Current Affairs and GK | 18 May 2022

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 31 May 2022 13:02 PM IST

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Topic: Reports and Indices/Ranking

1. India topped air pollution death toll in 2019.

  • According to a report, 16.7 lakh deaths occurred in India due to Air pollution. It is the highest number of deaths due to air pollution in the world.
  • As per a report on pollution and health published in The Lancet Planetary Health, air pollution alone caused 90 lakh deaths in 2019.
  • Ambient air pollution was responsible for 45 lakh deaths while hazardous chemical pollutants caused 17 lakh deaths.
  • In India, 9.8 lakh deaths occurred due to PM2.5 pollution, and another 6.1 lakh death occurred due to household air pollution.
  • The death count associated with indoor air pollution and water pollution has decreased.
  • According to this report, the Indo-Gangetic Plain area is most affected from the Air pollution.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) has further tightened its health-based global air quality guidelines. It has lowered the guideline value for PM2.5 from 10 μg/m3 to 5 μg/m3.

Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

2. Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal chaired the 4th meeting of NSAC on 17 May 2022.

  • The 4th meeting of the National Startup Advisory Council (NSAC) was held in New Delhi.
  • Minister urged NSAC members to focus on tier 2 and tier 3 cities.
  • He also launched NavIC Grand Challenge. It aims to promote the adoption of NavIC as the geo-positioning solution. 
  • First meeting of NSAC was held in April 2021. The second meeting of NSAC was held in August 2021.
  • National Startup Advisory Council (NSAC):
    • It was formed by Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT). DPIIT notified its formation in January 2020.
    • It was formed to advise the Government on measures needed to build a strong ecosystem for nurturing innovation and startups in the country.

Topic: National Appointments

3. BSE has appointed S S Mundra as its Chairman.

  • Board of Directors of BSE has approved his appointment. His appointment is subject to the approval of SEBI.
  • S S Mundra will replace Justice Vikramajit Sen.
  • He worked as RBI deputy governor till July 2017. He was also RBI's nominee on the Financial Stability Board (G20 Forum).
  • He also served as Vice-chair of OECD's International Network on Financial Education.
  • BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange):
    • BSE is India’s premier exchange. It is the world’s fastest Stock Exchange with a speed of 6 microseconds.
    • It is the first stock exchange to get approval from SEBI. It launched its SME platform on 13th March 2012.
    • It was established in 1875. It is also the oldest stock exchange in Asia. It is located in Mumbai.

Topic: National Appointments

4. Rajiv Ranjan and Sitikantha Pattanaik have been appointed by RBI as executive directors.

  • They have been appointed as executive directors with effect from May 1, 2022.
  • Sitikantha Pattanaik served as an adviser in the Department of Economic and Policy Research.
  • Rajiv Ranjan was an Adviser-in-Charge of the Monetary Policy Department and Secretary to the Monetary Policy Committee.
  • Rajiv Ranjan will also serve as an ex-officio member of the Monetary Policy Committee.
  • As Executive Director (ED), Sitikantha Pattanaik will look after the Department of Economic and Policy Research.
  • As Executive Director (ED), Rajiv Ranjan will take care of the Monetary Policy Department.

Topic: National Appointments

5. Naveen Srivastava has been appointed as India's new Ambassador to Nepal.

  • Mr. Srivastava is currently working as an Additional Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs.
  • The appointment has been announced by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Lumbini in Nepal.
  • Vinay Mohan Kwatra, who became foreign secretary on 1 May 2022, was serving as India's envoy to Nepal before his appointment.
  • Nepal:
    • Nepal is a landlocked nation. It shares a border of over 1,850 km with Indian states like Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Sikkim, West Bengal, and Bihar.
    • Its capital is Kathmandu and the currency is Nepalese Rupees.
    • Bidya Devi Bhandari is the President of Nepal and Sher Bahadur Deuba is the Prime Minister of Nepal.
    • The 1950 India-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship is the cornerstone of the two country's special relationship.

Topic: New Developments

6. West Central Railway has developed a battery-operated dual-mode locomotive, ‘Navdoot’.

  • After e-bikes, e-cars, and e-bus, now the e-train has been introduced in the country.
  • This engine operates in both battery and electric modes. It is currently being used on a trial basis during train shunting at Jabalpur, Mudwara, and other stations.
  • At 30 kilometres per hour, this e-engine can pull 18 coaches. It currently contains 84 batteries and is capable of pulling 400 tonnes.
  • The Electric Department of New Katni Junction has performed locomotive 'Navdoot'.
  • The Railway Board has also awarded this Dual Mode Locomotive the Best Innovation Award. With this new locomotive, railways will save 1000 litres of diesel every day.
  • West Central Railways:
    • It was formed by combining two divisions from the central railways, namely Bhopal and Jabalpur, and one division from the western railways, namely Kota.
    • The majority of the route is in the states of Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, with a small section in Uttar Pradesh.
    • It came into existence on 1 April 2003. It is headquartered in Jabalpur.
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Topic: Reports and Indices

7. Findings of 3rd party assessment of AB-HWCs in 18 states were released by Union Health & Family Welfare Minister on 17 May.

  • The assessment of Ayushman Bharat – Health and Wellness Centres (AB-HWCs) in 18 states has been done in two phases.
  • It has been done by non-governmental entities, GRAAM and JHPIEGO as well as AIIMS, New Delhi for the year 2020-21.
  • The study covered 317 facilities across eighteen states with 117 PHCs/UPHCs and 220 SHCs.
  • The report finds that the implementation of the AB-HWC scheme is on track in most states.
  • Grassroots Research and Advocacy Movement (GRAAM) is a public policy research initiative in India.
  • JHPIEGO is an international, non-profit health organization.

3rd party assessment of AB-HWCs in 18 states

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Important Days

8. International Museum Day: 18 May

  • International Museum Day (IMD) is celebrated on 18 May each year.
  • IMD provides an opportunity to increase public awareness about role museums play in societal development.
  • International Council of Museums is organizing IMD celebrations every year since 1977.
  • The theme for International Museum Day 2022 is 'The Power of Museums'.
  • International Council of Museums is a non-governmental organization. It is headquartered in Paris, France. It is having a consultative status with UNESCO.

Topic: National News

9. Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan pitched the idea of ‘Malviya Mission’ for faculty development.

  • Union Minister of Education Dharmendra Pradhan reviewed the report on the institutional mechanism for capacity building of faculty in higher education institutes.
  • Dharmendra Pradhan said that the focus of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 is on teacher education.
  • A multi-dimensional approach is required for the upskilling of faculty with a focus on Indian values, languages, knowledge, ethos, and traditions.
  • He launched a textbook on All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE)’s Indian Knowledge Systems (IKS) titled "Introduction to Indian Knowledge Systems: Concepts and Applications”.

Malviya Mission for faculty development

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Environment and Ecology

10. Uttarakhand has highest number of bird species in India.

  • According to a survey, Uttarakhand has 294 bird species. It is followed by West Bengal with 284 bird species.
  • Arunachal Pradesh with 234 and Maharashtra with 228 bird species are at third and fourth position respectively.
  • The one-day survey has been conducted by Bird Count India, Bird Conservation Nepal and the Bhutan-based Royal Society for Protection of Nature.
  • This survey has been released on 14 May, which is observed as Endemic Bird Day.
  • This count of birds will aware people about the bird diversity across Himalayan states. This is the first such coordinated count which can be used as a base figure.
  • Uttarakhand has also the highest number of birdwatchers in the Himalayan region.
  • Jammu & Kashmir has 193 bird species while Ladakh has 104 species of birds.

Topic: Important Days

11. World Hypertension Day: 17 May

  • World Hypertension Day is celebrated every year on 17 May to spread awareness about hypertension and its symptoms.
  • Hypertension is also known as high blood pressure. It occurs when blood pressure rises to the level of 140/90.
  • It is one of the main causes of cardiovascular disease. It can cause stroke, renal complications, and premature death.
  • The theme of this year’s World Hypertension Day is “Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer”.
  • Hypertension can be prevented by measuring the blood pressure regularly.

World Hypertension Day

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: International News

12. Sweden decided to formally apply for NATO membership.

  • Sweden's government announced that it will apply for the membership of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
  • Sweden broke away from the 73-year policy of "non-alignment".
  • Finland has also decided to apply for membership of NATO.
  • Russia has repeatedly warned Finland and Sweden of the consequences of joining NATO.
  • Sweden and Finland remained neutral throughout the Cold War but came closer to NATO after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
  • North Atlantic Treaty Organization:
    • It is an intergovernmental political and military alliance of 30 North American and European countries.
    • It was constituted in 1949 with the North Atlantic Treaty, which regulates the functioning of NATO.
    • Its headquarters is located in Brussels, Belgium.

Topic: Sports

13. South Korea wins Uber cup 2022 title.

  • South Korea wins Uber cup 2022 title by defeating China by 3-2 in Bangkok.
  • South Korean player Sim Yu-jin defeated Wang Zhiyi by 28-26, 18-21, 21-8 to win women's team championship.
  • South Korea won the first Uber cup in the last 12 years.
  • Recently, India has won the Thomas Cup title for the first time by defeating Indonesia.
  • Uber Cup:
    • It was started in 1957.
    • It is a major international badminton competition between the women's national badminton teams.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

14. Ministry of Skill Development partnered with Indian School of Business for capacity-building programmes.

  • Around 120 officers, 30 per batch, will undergo a comprehensive five-day long training in ISB Hyderabad.
  • A first batch of 30 officers has completed training from ISB Mohali campus.
  • An MoU has been also signed between MSDE and ISB. The primary goal of the programme is to strengthen leadership skills.
  • The MSDE and ISB are encouraging officials to inculcate culture of innovation within their respective organisations.
  • The batches were designed to encourage cross-learning and to creating a new generation of upskilled workforce.
  • Indian School of Business:
    • It is a private Business school.
    • It has campuses in Hyderabad and Mohali.





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