Daily Current Affairs and GK | 19 April 2024

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 19 Apr 2024 17:10 PM IST

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Topic: Environment and Ecology

1. An international team of scientists discovered 50 unknown species near Salas y Gomez underwater mountain chain.

  • After exploring the Salas y Gómez underwater mountain chain in the Southeastern Pacific Ocean, Scientists announced the discovery of 160 marine species.
  • At least 50 of those species are new to science. Squid, fish, corals, mollusks, glass sponges, sea urchins, crabs, and squat lobsters have been discovered.
  • The findings came after a 40-day expedition across the Salas y Gómez Ridge to Rapa Nui.
  • The data collected from this expedition will help establishing new marine protected areas.
  • 2,900-kilometre-long ocean ridge Salas y Gómez has over 110 seamounts and it supports the migration of many marine animals.
  • After the ratification of the UN High Seas Treaty, Salas y Gómez Ridge is one of the many global locations under consideration for being designated as high seas marine protected area.

Topic: National Appointments

2. Vice Admiral Dinesh Kumar Tripathi has been appointed as next chief of Indian Navy.

  • Vice Admiral Dinesh Kumar Tripathi will replace incumbent Admiral R Hari Kumar.
  • Admiral R Hari Kumar will retire on 30 April 2024.
  • Vice Admiral Tripathi is presently serving as Vice Chief of the Naval Staff.
  • Vice Admiral Tripathi has been appointed with effect from 30 April. He is a communication and electronic warfare specialist.
  • He had served as Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Western Naval Command. He has commanded INS Vinash.
  • He also served as Flag Officer Commanding of the Eastern Fleet.
  • He is a recipient of the Ati Vishist Seva Medal and Nau Sena Medal.

Topic: Miscellaneous

3. Claims of Nestle adding sugar and honey to infant cereals and milk products sold in low- and middle-income nations will be investigated by the FSSAI.

  • According to an investigation published in The Guardian, Nestle added sugar to its Nido and Cerelac product lines, which are distributed in Latin America, Asia, and Africa.
  • The sugar was added as sucrose or honey. Public Eye conducted the inquiry in cooperation with the International Baby Food Action Network. Public Eye is a Swiss investigative organization.
  • The media reports were acknowledged by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR).
  • In a notification, NCPCR stated that infant foods had to adhere to stringent quality and safety criteria because of the population group's vulnerability.
  • The NCPCR requested that the FSSAI conduct a thorough review of the amount of sugar present in infant food products that are produced and sold by Nestle.
  • Within seven days, the FSSAI is expected to inquire and provide information.
  • "Cerelac wheat-based cereals for six-month-old babies sold by Nestlé in Germany and the UK have no added sugar," claims the Public Eye investigation.
  • The same product has 2.2 grams of sugar per serving in India and varying amount in other countries.
  • Nestle is a Swiss multinational food and drink processing conglomerate corporation.

Topic: Books and Authors

4. The book ‘India — the Road to Renaissance: A Vision and an Agenda’ has been launched.

  • The book is written by former UN official Bhimeswara Challa.
  • The book was launched at Administrative Staff College of India (ASCI) campus.
  • The launch event was attended by former IAS officer Dr Jayaprakash Narayan, former ASCI chairman K. Padamanabhaiah and former RBI Governor Dr D. Subba Rao.

Topic: Awards and Prizes

5. Malcolm Adiseshiah Award 2023 will be presented to Utsa Patnaik.

  • Renowned economist of national and international repute, Utsa Patnaik, has been selected for the Malcolm Adisesia Award 2023.
  • The Malcolm and Elizabeth Adisesia Trust gives the award every year.
  • The prestigious national award is presented to outstanding social scientists.
  • A national-level jury, specially constituted to choose the winner, selects from among the received nominations.
  • The award will be given along with a citation and prize money of ₹2 lakhs at a function to be held in Chennai.

Topic: Agriculture and Allied Sector

6. Specifications of IFFCO's Nano Urea Plus notified by the Government.

  • The specifications of a new product, 'Nano Urea Plus' fertilizer, to be manufactured by cooperative IFFCO in the country over the next three years, have been notified by the government.
  • Nano Urea Plus is a new version of Nano Urea to meet the nitrogen requirements of the crop at critical growth stages.
  • According to a gazette notification, Nano Urea Plus in liquid form with 16% nitrogen content by weight, pH value 4-8.5, and viscosity 5-30 has been approved by the government.
  • The cooperative major IFFCO will manufacture this product for a period of three years.
  • To meet the nitrogen requirement of the crop at critical growth stages, IFFCO's Nano Urea Plus is an advanced formulation of Nano Urea with redefined nutrition.
  • To promote soil health, farmer profitability, and a sustainable environment, it is used in place of traditional urea and other nitrogen fertilizers.
  • The commercial production of the new product will soon begin at the Kalol plant in Gujarat, Amla, and Phulpur in Uttar Pradesh.
  • In June 2021, IFFCO launched the world's first 'Nano Liquid Urea' fertilizer. Subsequently, IFFCO brought 'Nano DAP' fertilizer in April 2023.
  • Till now, the cooperative institution has sold 7.5 crore bottles of Nano Urea since August 2021, while till now it has sold 45 lakh bottles of Nano DAP.
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Topic: Defence

7. DRDO carried out a successful flight test of Indigenous Technology Cruise Missile.

  • The missile was fired for testing from the Integrated Test Range, Chandipur off the coast of Odisha.
  • The flight of the missile was also monitored from the Indian Air Force’s Su-30-Mk-I aircraft.
  • This successful flight test has also demonstrated the reliable performance of the indigenous propulsion system, which has been developed by the Gas Turbine Research Establishment.
  • The missile is also having advanced avionics and software to make sure its better and more reliable performance.
  • The successful development of indigenous long-range subsonic cruise missiles powered by indigenous propulsion is a significant achievement according to Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh.

Topic: Summits/Conferences/Meetings

8. World Future Energy Summit 2024 held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC).

  • It was hosted by Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) from April 16-18, 2024.
  • The summit participants commended projects of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA).
  • DEWA’s Green Hydrogen project is the first of its kind to produce hydrogen from solar energy in the Middle East and North Africa.
  • Al Shera’a Building, DEWA’s new headquarters, will be the tallest, largest, and smartest government Zero Energy Building in the world.
  • Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park project features the world’s tallest Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) tower at over 263 metres, according to Guinness World Records.
  • It also features and the largest thermal energy storage capacity of 5,907 megawatt-hours, according to Guinness World Records.
  • DEWA is implementing 6th phase of the solar park using the latest solar photovoltaic bifacial technologies with single-axis tracking.
  • DEWA is also implementing 180 million imperial gallons per day (MIGD) seawater reverse osmosis (RO) desalination project in Hassyan.
  • It is the world’s largest project using RO technology under the Independent Water Producer (IWP).

Topic: Biotechnology and Diseases

9. Pathogens that transmit through the air will be called ’infectious respiratory particles’: WHO

  • The World Health Organization (WHO) has updated terminology for pathogens.
  • The main aim of the change is to help in identifying, and respond to existing and new airborne pathogens.
  • At present, there is no common terminology to describe the transmission of these pathogens, which was particularly challenging during the global COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The announcement on after the wide-ranging consultations across multiple steps in 2021-2023.
  • As per the new definition, all particles expelled from the mouth or nose of an infected person, regardless of size, are called “infectious respiratory particles” or IRPs.
  • The pathogens covered include those that cause respiratory infections, e.g. COVID-19, influenza, measles, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), and tuberculosis.
  • The publication, entitled “Global technical consultation report on proposed terminology for pathogens that transmit through the air”, has been released for an extensive consultation.

Topic: Important Days

10. World Liver Day 2024: 19 April

  • World Liver Day is celebrated on April 19 every year to raise awareness about liver health.
  • It also raises awareness about the importance of a healthy liver and the prevalence of liver disease worldwide.
  • The theme for this year's World Liver Day is - Keep your liver healthy and disease-free.”
  • The number of deaths from liver disease is every year increasing due to lack of awareness and prevention measures. Around 20 lakh people die due to liver diseases every year across the world.
  • India started celebrating the World Liver Day in 2019.

Topic: Sports

11. India's first 'hybrid pitch' will be set up in Dharamshala.

  • The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) stadium has become the first BCCI-recognised venue to install a state-of-the-art 'hybrid pitch'.
  • In the future, international and IPL matches will be held on this track.
  • Netherlands-based 'SISGrass', part of the SIS Pitches group of companies, has been roped in for the hybrid pitch installation for the first time.
  • This cutting-edge technology will change the game by providing a more durable, consistent, and high-performance playing surface.
  • The surface consists of natural turf inside cricket stadiums with a small percentage of polymer fibers.
  • This structure is believed to be more resilient to the stresses generated during play, as well as increasing the life of the pitch, guaranteeing uniform bounce, and reducing pressure on the groundstaff.
  • The completed installations are still predominantly natural grass, with only 5% polymer fibers used to ensure that the completely natural pitch characteristics are maintained.
  • The 'universal' machine used in Dharamshala for the hybrid pitch will be taken to Ahmedabad and Mumbai to make more such pitches.
  • After the success of installing the hybrid in English cricket grounds, SIS decided to develop the technology in India.
  • At various grounds in England such as Lord's, The Oval, Edgbaston, Old Trafford, and Trent Bridge, the Universal Machine has been used to install SISGrass.

Topic: Space and IT

12. New FDI rules for the space sector notified by the Center ahead of Elon Musk's visit.

  • Amendments to the Foreign Direct Investment Policy in the space sector have been notified by the Government to attract offshore investors in the satellite manufacturing and satellite launch vehicle sectors.
  • The FDI policy for the space sector was amended through a Gazette notification dated April 16, 2024.
  • It sets out liberalized entry pathways and provides clarity for FDI in satellites, launch vehicles, and related systems or sub-systems, creation of spaceports for launching and receiving spacecraft, and manufacturing of space-related components and systems.
  • These rules may be called the Foreign Exchange Management (Non-Debt Instruments) (Third Amendment) Rules, 2024.
  • Under the revised policy, liberalized entry routes are aimed at attracting potential investors in Indian companies in the sector.
  • The notification came days ahead of the scheduled visit of Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who is expected to meet various Indian space companies during his visit from April 21 to 22.
  • As per the notification, up to 74% FDI is permitted under the automatic route for satellite manufacturing and operations, satellite data products, and ground segment and user segment.
  • More than 74% of these activities are under the government route.
  • FDI up to 49% is permitted for launch vehicles and associated systems or sub-systems, construction of spaceports for launching and receiving spacecraft is under the automatic route, but more than 49% will require government permission.
  • Additionally, 100% FDI is permitted without government permission for manufacturing components and systems/sub-systems for satellites, ground segments, and user segments.

Topic: Miscellaneous

13. Indian team won four medals in the Mathematical Olympiad (EGMO) 2024.

  • Indian team has secured 2 Silver and 2 Bronze medals in the 13th European Girls’ Mathematical Olympiad (EGMO) 2024.
  • This Olympiad has been organized in Tskaltubo, Georgia from April 11 – 17, 2024.
  • Gunjan Agarwal of Gurgaon and Sanjana Philo Chacko of Thiruvananthapuram won Silver medals.
  • Larissa from Hissar and Pune’s Saee Patil won Bronze medals at the Mathematical Olympiad (EGMO) 2024.
  • The team was led by leader Sahil Mhaskar, Deputy Leader Aditi Muthkhod and Observer Ananya Ranade from the Chennai Mathematical Institute.
  • This is the second time that all four contestants securing medals at EGMO.

Topic: Personality in News

14. 8 Indians got place in the Time's 100 Most Influential List 2024.

  • Eight Indians- Ali Bhatt, Ajay Banga, Sakshi Malik, Dev Patel, Priyamvada Natarajan, Ajay Banga, Satya Nadella, and Jigar Shah got place in the 100 most influential people of 2024.
  • Time magazine's prestigious list was released on 17th April 2024.
  • Leaders from various sectors, including finance, entertainment, technology, activism, and academia got place in the list.
  • The overall list contains four categories: Leaders, heroes, artists, and thinkers.
  • Indian-born British chef Asma Khan, who runs ‘Darjeeling Express’ in Soho, London has also got place in the list.
  • Priyamvada Natarajan is an astrophysicist and a Professor of Astronomy. Her research is based on studies of supermassive black holes.
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