Daily Current Affairs and GK | 24 and 25 May 2020

2020-05-25

1. HIL India Limited will supply Malathion Technical to Iran

  • HIL India Limited will supply 25 MT Malathion Technical to Iran for locust control program.
  • Additionally, HIL has signed an agreement with the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare to supply malathion technical for locust control program to Rajasthan and Gujarat.
  • Also, the credit rating of HIL has been increased from BB to BBB-. The BBB- rating reflects a stable investment grade.
  • HIL has supplied malathion technical to municipal corporations for dengue and chikungunya control program.
  • HIL India Limited has also exported 10 metric tons of Mancozeb to the Latin American country of Peru. Mancozeb is a fungicide.
  • HIL India Limited is a subordinate PSU under the Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals of the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers.
  • Malathion Technical is an insecticide that is used to control outdoor pests, both agricultural and residential.

2. India Meteorological Department issued an orange warning

  • Recently, the India Meteorological Department has issued an orange warning.
  • An orange warning is issued when a heatwave is severe heatwave for more than four days or more than two days.
  • India Meteorological Department has said that in the coming four to five days, there is a possibility of severe heat in parts of northwest, central and peninsular parts.
  • An orange alert has been issued for heatwave in Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and Vidarbha, while severe heatwave in West and East Rajasthan.
  • Last Saturday, Churu and Ganganagar in Rajasthan were the hottest cities in the country with 46.6 °C.
  • Heatwave - when the maximum temperature is at least 40 °C and the maximum temperature is 4.5 °C- 6.4 °C higher than normal or when the maximum temperature exceeds 45 °C for two stations in a subdivision for two consecutive days.
  • Severe heatwave - when the maximum temperature is at least 40 °C and the maximum temperature is 6.4 °C higher than normal or when the maximum temperature exceeds 47 °C.

3. US may come out of Open Sky Treaty

  • Recently the US has given notice that it can come out of the Open Sky Treaty.
  • US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told that the reason for this decision is the continuous violation of this treaty by Russia.
  • Therefore, US President Donald Trump said that either amendment or a new treaty should be made, otherwise US will come out of this treaty.
  • Open Sky Treaty:
    • The treaty was conceived by former US President Dwight Eisenhower in the early years of the Cold War.
    • It was signed in 1992 by George H. W Bush after the collapse of the Soviet Union and it came into effect in 2002.
    • 34 countries have signed the treaty.
    • The agreement allows countries signing the treaty to monitor the arms development of the signatories by conducting surveillance flights in each other's territories.

4. NASA will launch the Space-X Demo-2 mission on May 27

  • NASA will launch the Space-X Demo-2 mission to the International Space Station on 27 May 2020.
  • It will become the first crewed flight to launch from US soil since the conclusion of the space shuttle era in 2011.
  • The Demo-2 mission is part of NASA's commercial crew program.
  • Two NASA astronauts Robert Bacon and Douglas Hurley will be part of the US human spaceflight system.
  • The mission will be launched by a Falcon-9 rocket from Florida.

  • NASA's Commercial Crew program has worked with a number of US aerospace industry companies since 2010, with Boeing and SpaceX selected by NASA in September 2014 to transfer transportation systems from the US to the ISS.
  • Following the launch, Crew Dragon will perform a series of phased maneuvers on May 28 for gradual contact with the ISS and autonomy.
  • After docking, the two astronauts will board the ISS. They will conduct tests of the Crew Dragon and conduct research with the crew of the 63 space stations currently present at the ISS residence.

5. China's central bank introduced digital currency

  • When the whole world is affected by the outbreak of COVID-19, China's central bank has introduced digital currency in the country under digital revolution.
  • However, it has just been started as a pilot project.
  • China has become the first country in the world to do so.
  • Right now, it has been named Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP) which can be used through mobile wallet app.

  • It is pegged 1:1 with fiat currency, and to replace M0 (which includes amounts less than the amount issued by banking institutions to PBoCs).
  • Fiat Money - The term fiat money refers to notes and coins. They are called fiat money because they have no value in themselves. However, their value is formally authorized by the RBI.
  • Digital currency – It also known as virtual currency or cryptocurrency. Although crypto currency is not a legal tender, it is used to conduct financial transactions. Crypto currency works on blockchain technology. Bitcoin was the first crypto currency that was launched in 2009. The Libra issued by Facebook is also a type of digital currency.

6. AIIMS Raipur will now provide plasma therapy for COVID-19 patients

  • Recently the Indian Council of Medical Research has reported that All India Institute of Medical Sciences Raipur will now provide plasma therapy for COVID-19 patients.
  • In primary research, it has been found that plasma therapy is most suitable in the treatment of this disease. During the clinical trial, AIIMS Raipur will evaluate whether plasma therapy is safe for COVID-19 patients.
  • According to the protocol the research will only include those patients who are over 18 years of age and have their plasma donor available.

(Source: The Financial Express)

  • Convalescent Plasma Therapy:
    • In this therapy, the recent convulsant sera of a person recovering from infection is injected into another patient of COVID-19, as the patient recovering from the disease will have antibodies that can help other patients get rid of the coronavirus.

7. Hunar Haat will be re-organized across the country from September

  • Hunar Haat will be re-organized across the country from September 2020.
  • This time it will be Hunar Haat with a local to global theme and a relatively large participation of artisans.
  • It will be held after a gap of about five months.
  • The event is not being held due to the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown.

  • Hunar Haat is an empowerment exchange of artisans and artisans across the country.
  • Due to this, more than 5 lakh Indian artisans, craftsmen, culinary experts and others associated with them have got employment opportunities in the last 5 years.
  • It has emerged as a trusted brand of rare exquisite indigenous handmade products.
  • Hunar Haat is organized under the Ministry of Minority Affairs.

8. Government issued a revised advisory on the use of hydroxychloroquine

  • Recently the government has issued a revised advisory on the use of hydroxychloroquine.
  • According to this, the intake of anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine reduces the chances of getting infected with the corona virus.

(Source: News on AIR)

  • The National Task Force constituted by ICMR for COVID-19 reported that healthcare workers who took hydroxychloroquine were less likely to develop corona infections than those who were not taking it.
  • The ICMR recommended that the drug be given under strict medical supervision with an informed consent. It is also advised to consult a physician for any adverse effects of this medicine.

9. Balaghat district of Madhya Pradesh got first place for providing employment under MNREGA

  • The Balaghat district of Madhya Pradesh has secured the first position in the state in providing employment under MNREGA.
  • One lakh 23 thousand 64 laborers are getting employment in this Naxalite affected district of Madhya Pradesh.

  • Madhya Pradesh:
    • Madhya Pradesh ranks second in terms of area in the country after Rajasthan.
    • The state capital is Bhopal.
    • The state has 230 Vidhan Sabha and 29 Lok Sabha seats.
    • The Chief Minister is Shivraj Singh Chauhan and Governor is Lalji Tandon.

10. COVID 19 vaccine developed by the Serum Institute in Pune hospital

  • Recently, the Serum Institute has developed the COVID-19 vaccine with an Ayurvedic formula which is undergoing trials at the Pune hospital.
  • The vaccine has been developed with the help of American biotechnology company Kodagenix.
  • Serum is testing Phase-3 of the recombinant BCG vaccine.

(Source: The Financial Express)

  • Serum Institute of India:
    • It is a manufacturer of immunobiological drugs including vaccines in India.
    • It was founded in 1966 by Cyrus Poonawala.
    • It is headquartered in Pune.

11. Center for Nano and Soft Matter Sciences (CeNS) Bangalore made convenient masks

  • Recently, a team of researchers at the Center for Nano and Soft Matter Sciences (CeNS) Bangalore, have made convenient masks.
  • This mask helps to create enough space in front of the mouth while speaking.
  • The technology has been transferred to a Bangalore-based company for its mass production.

  • Center for Nano and Soft Matter Sciences:
    • The Center for Nano and Soft Matter Sciences (CeNS) is an autonomous research institute under the Department of Science and Technology (DST).
    • It was established in 1991.
    • It is headquartered in Bangalore.

12. 24 May: Commonwealth Day

  • The day was celebrated every year on 24 May, the birthday of Queen Victoria. Though it was later shifted in March, the day is still celebrated on 24 May in many countries including India.
  • Commonwealth Day is an annual festival celebrated by all people in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and the Commonwealth in US, the Pacific and Europe.
  • This year's theme is Delivering a Common Future.
  • Commonwealth:
    • It is a political organization of 54 countries.
    • Most of the countries in this were colonies of the British Empire.
    • It was established in 1931.
    • They are headquartered in London.

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