- 1. Former Mastercard CEO and Indian origin Ajay Banga is set to become World Bank’s next President.
- 2. World’s first Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) vaccine for older adults has been approved by US FDA.
- 3. Australian High Commission in India announced Government Grant for a Project in Kargil.
- 4. Indian Astronomical Observatory above Mount Saraswati captured rare Aurora lights.
- 5. CM skill upgradation, employment scheme has been launched by Uttarakhand.
- 6. TRAI has recommended that Cable Landing Stations in India should be classified as critical and essential services.
- 7. Coal Miners Day: 04 May
- 8. Historian Ranajit Guha passed away at the age of 100.
- 9. Next year, India will get its own index to measure the impact of heat.
- 10. 12th round of Foreign Office Consultations hold by India and Egypt.
- 11. India has fallen 11 positions in the World Press Freedom Index 2023.
- 12. Socialist leader Ramkishan became Man of the Century at the age of 97.
- 13. Delhi government launched a summer action plan to reduce dust pollution.
- 14. Indian-origin actor Meera Syal will receive BAFTA Fellowship.
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Topic: International Appointment
1. Former Mastercard CEO and Indian origin Ajay Banga is set to become World Bank’s next President.
- World Bank’s executive board elected Ajay Banga to a five-year term as president. The executive board has 25 members.
- United States President Joe Biden nominated Banga for the post in late February.
- He was the only candidate to replace World Bank chief David Malpass.
- 24 members of the World Bank’s executive board voted in Banga’s election. Russia abstained from voting.
- He is selected as the 14th President of the World Bank for a five-year term beginning June 2, 2023.
- He was awarded the Padma Shri Award in 2016.
- The President of the World Bank Group is also the Chair of the Board of Executive Directors of the IBRD (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development).
- The President of the World Bank Group is also ex officio chair of the Board of Directors of the IDA (International Development Association), IFC (International Finance Corporation), and the MIGA (Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency).
- The President of the World Bank Group is also ex officio chair of the Administrative Council of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).
- Eugene Meyer was the first World Bank Group president.
(Source: News on AIR)
Topic: Biotechnology and Diseases
2. World’s first Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) vaccine for older adults has been approved by US FDA.
- The United States Food and Drug Administration approved the vaccine.
- However, it still needs approval from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Then, the vaccine can be rolled out to the public.
- US FDA has approved the vaccine for people aged 60 and older. It was found 83% effective against diseases caused by RSV.
- It was found over 94% effective against severe diseases.
- As per US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, RSV infection leads to nearly 60,000 to 120,000 hospitalizations.
- It leads to 6,000 to 10,000 deaths among adults 65 years of age and older.
- Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV):
- The RSV infection is more common among children but it can even affect the elderly population.
- RSV often causes mild, cold-like symptoms, but it can be fatal in patients with weak immune systems.
- RSV spreads from person to person through coughing and sneezing of an infected person or touching objects that have the virus on them.
Topic: State News/ Ladakh
3. Australian High Commission in India announced Government Grant for a Project in Kargil.
- This announcement has been made during a Special Meeting at Srinagar chaired by the Australian high commissioner Barry O’Farrell.
- The project “Return to Roots” main objective is to integrate traditional knowledge and the current school science curriculum in alignment with the goals of the National Education Policy.
- It will also increase scientific temper among school children of tribal backgrounds.
- It is the first time in the history of Ladakh that the Australian High Commission has announced a government grant for a project.
- By fostering traditional knowledge and practises, the project aims to provide new opportunities for local artisans and craftspeople.
- Tropicalist Trust of Kargil is working for reviving the traditional knowledge of Natural Herbs and their benefits.
Topic: Space and IT
4. Indian Astronomical Observatory above Mount Saraswati captured rare Aurora lights.
- For the first time, Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO) above Mount Saraswati observed Aurora lights on camera over the sky of Ladakh.
- This mysterious phenomenon has been captured by a 360-degree camera set up at the Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO) in Ladakh Hanle.
- The Indian Institute of Astrophysics said that a ‘coronal mass ejection’ or ‘CME’ was hurtled from the sun and hit the earth's magnetic field at a speed of 21,60,000 kilometres per hour.
- The charged particle released during the coronal mass ejection when reached near Earth causes disturbance in the Earth's magnetic field. These particles can travel up to 3 million kilometres per hour.
- Such a large geomagnetic storm was last seen in 2015.
- The aurora lights are seen when an intense geomagnetic storm hit the Earth. It is extremely rare to see the aurora at such a low latitude.
- These auroras are generally seen at higher altitudes in parts of Alaska, Norway, and other countries.
Topic: State News/ Uttarakhand
5. CM skill upgradation, employment scheme has been launched by Uttarakhand.
- Uttarakhand cabinet approved the Chief Minister Skill Upgradation and Global Employment Scheme for youths who want to pursue careers abroad.
- The state government will develop skills among students who want to pursue careers abroad.
- The government will also help students in getting tickets and visas.
- In the first phase, selected candidates will be trained in the hospitality and nursing sectors by institutions.
- A workshop will be also organized for the screening of students on 9 May. After selection, they will be trained for jobs available in the elderly care sector in Japan.
- These youths will be trained in the language, culture and work ethics of the country where they are going to work.
- An application has been developed on the ‘Apuni Sarkar Portal’ to create a database of youths seeking employment in abroad.
- Proposals from organisations involved in overseas employment are also being invited.
Topic: National News
6. TRAI has recommended that Cable Landing Stations in India should be classified as critical and essential services.
- TRAI has also recommended that infrastructure status should be granted to the broadcast and cable sector and submarine cable laying and repair in Indian Territorial Water and Exclusive Economic Zones of India.
- It has also recommended establishing of a user-friendly, transparent and responsive digital single-window system-based portal.
- This portal should be set up for end-to-end inter-departmental online processes.
- It said a standing Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) Committee should be established by each Ministry.
- This committee should regularly review, simplify and update the existing processes. It should ensure ease of doing business as an ongoing activity.
- TRAI also recommended that the spectrum royalty fee for temporary uplinking of live events on a pro-rata basis for an actual number of days of the event should be charged by the Wireless and Planning Commission.
- As per TRAI’s recommendations, a mobile app for registration for local cable operators should be developed by the Information & Broadcasting Ministry.
- TRAI has recommended that the period for submission by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) of details regarding ISP nodes and the number of broadband/ leased/ dial-up subscribers should be revised to once every year.
- TRAI recommended that permissions for laying and operations of the submarine cables network should also be made online under the Saral Sanchar portal.
Topic: Important Days
7. Coal Miners Day: 04 May
- Coal Miners Day is celebrated every year on 04 May to honour the efforts and contribution of coal miners in extracting coal.
- India’s first coal mine was set up in 1774. The site of this mine was Raniganj Coalfield, located on the banks of the Damodar River.
- This mine was operated by John Summer and Suetonius Grant Heatly of the East India Company.
- The first coal mine was opened in Scotland in 1575.
- 04 May was announced as National Coal Miners Day by the Indian government in 2010.
- 4 April of each year is observed as the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action.
Topic: Personality in News
8. Historian Ranajit Guha passed away at the age of 100.
- He died due to old age-related ailments at his residence in Austria.
- He played a key role in motivating young historians in pursuing studies on the subaltern society.
- He was born in Barisal in present-day Bangladesh.
- He completed his post-graduation in History from Calcutta University.
- 'Elementary Aspects of Peasant Insurgency in Colonial India' is one of his well-known books.
- His other books are The Small Voice of History and Dominance without Hegemony: History and Power in Colonial India.
Topic: Environment and Ecology
9. Next year, India will get its own index to measure the impact of heat.
- The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said that India will launch its composite index next year to quantify the impact of heat on its population and generate impact-based heat wave alerts for specific locations.
- The IMD last week began releasing an experimental heat index for different parts of the country, taking into account air temperature and relative humidity to determine how hot it actually is.
- IMD is now coming out with its own system, a multi-parameter product called 'Heat Hazard Score'.
- It will integrate other parameters such as wind and duration of exposure along with temperature and humidity.
- This will be an effective indicator of heat stress for people.
- The hazard score would be ready in about two months and it would be operational by the next summer season.
- The IMD has predicted above-normal maximum temperatures and more heat wave days in eastern and central-eastern parts of the country in May.
- IMD data show that the number of heat waves increased by 24% between 2010 and 2019 compared to 2000 to 2009.
- After 2015, there is a trend towards decreasing, though.
- Between 2000 and 2019, the death rate from tropical cyclones decreased by 94%, while it increased by 62.2% for heat waves.
- In 2023, India experienced its warmest February since record-keeping started in 1901.
- March 2022 was the warmest ever and the third driest in 121 years.
10. 12th round of Foreign Office Consultations hold by India and Egypt.
- On 3 May, 12th rounds of India-Egypt Foreign Office Consultations were organized in Cairo, Egypt.
- Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, Secretary in the External Affairs Ministry and Assistant Foreign Minister for Asian Affairs, Egypt Ayman Kamel co-chaired the consultations.
- During the consultations, the two sides comprehensively reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations including political, trade and commerce and investments.
- In addition, they discussed ways to strengthen ties between India and Egypt and enhance cooperation in multilateral forums.
- Both sides also exchanged views on regional and global issues of mutual interest including climate change, resilient supply chains and participation of Global South under India's G20 Presidency.
- In 2015, the last round of consultations took place in New Delhi.
(Source: News on Air)
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Topic: Reports and Indices/Ranking
11. India has fallen 11 positions in the World Press Freedom Index 2023.
- On May 3, the 21st edition of World Press Freedom Index was released by Reporters Without Borders (RSF).
- According to the latest report released by global media watchdog RSF, India’s rank has slipped to 161 out of 180 countries in the 2023 World Press Freedom Index.
- In this index, the rank of India was 150 in 2022 and 142 in 2021.
- In comparison, Pakistan has fared better in terms of media freedom as it improved from last year's 157th rank to 150th.
- In this index, Sri Lanka has also made a significant improvement, ranking 135 this year as compared to 146 in 2022.
- The Nordic trio of Norway, Ireland and Denmark continue to hold the top three positions in press freedom index.
- Vietnam, China and North Korea ranked in the bottom three.
- The World Press Freedom Index is based on five indicators including the Political indicator, Economic indicator, Legislative indicator, Social indicator and the Security indicator.
Topic: Personality in News
12. Socialist leader Ramkishan became Man of the Century at the age of 97.
- On 30 April, former Lok Sabha MP Pandit Ramkishan was awarded the title of Shatabdi Purush (Man of the Century) in New Delhi, in recognition of his efforts as a socialist leader.
- Appreciation letter was issued on birth centenary celebrations of socialist ideologue and eminent parliamentarian Madhu Limaye.
- Ramkishan was arrested several times while fighting for the tribals, Dalits and the poor.
- He had mobilised farmers and farm-labourers in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur-Banswara region during 1958-60 on the request of socialist icon Dr Ram Manohar Lohia.
- Ramkishan was imprisoned numerous times, including during the Emergency, and had also actively participated in the movements led by socialist leaders Jayaprakash Narayan and Lohia.
- In 1977, he was elected once to the Lok Sabha, and four times to the Rajasthan Legislative Assembly in 1962, 1967, 1974 and 1990.
Topic: State News/ Delhi
13. Delhi government launched a summer action plan to reduce dust pollution.
- Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has launched an action plan to combat air pollution during the summer season.
- The main focus of the action plan is on controlling dust pollution, which is a major contributor to air pollution in Delhi.
- 30 government departments are involved in the summer plan.
- Patrolling teams have been formed to keep a check on dust pollution, open burning of garbage and dumping of waste in industrial areas.
- At 13 air pollution hotspots, real-time apportionment studies will be conducted. A mobile air lab will be also deployed at each of these locations.
- The Real-time study will identify reasons for the increase in air pollution.
- Delhi government has also formed a standard operating procedure to prevent fire incidents at landfill sites.
- The government has procured 84 mechanical road sweeping machines, 609 water sprinklers and 185 mobile anti-smog guns to tackle air pollution.
Topic: Personality in News
14. Indian-origin actor Meera Syal will receive BAFTA Fellowship.
- BAFTA Fellowship will be conferred to the British actress-author Meera Sayal.
- The fellowship will be presented during the BAFTA Television Awards ceremony in London on May 14.
- BAFTA Fellowship is the highest accolade given by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) for contribution in film and/or television.
- As part of the fellowship, she will work directly with the arts charity to inspire and nurture aspiring creatives under BAFTA's learning, inclusion and talent programmes.
- She is best known for working in television shows such as 'Goodness Gracious Me' and 'The Kumars at No. 42’.
- 'Anita and Me' and 'Life Isn't All Ha Ha Hee Hee' are some notable novels written by her.