Current Affairs Quiz: 19th November 2020

“World Philosophy Day 2020 observed today.”

  • World Philosophy Day is observed on the third Thursday of November every year to strengthen people’s commitment to philosophy by fostering philosophical analysis, research, and studies on major contemporary issues. It also raises awareness about the importance of philosophy.
  • The 2020 edition of World Philosophy Day, to be celebrated this year on November 19 and November 20.
  • World Philosophy Day came into being after it was introduced by UNESCO in 2002. The international organisation set up this international day to honor philosophical reflections around the world. It is a day for people to share thoughts, openly explore and discuss new ideas, and inspire public debate or discussion on society’s challenges.
  • The theme of World Philosophy Day 2020 is the importance of philosophy in times of crisis. The 2020 edition of World Philosophy Day will focus on the importance of philosophical thinking in helping us cope with the multiple challenges the world faces.
  • World Philosophy Day was first celebrated on November 21, 2002. The UNESCO has declared World Philosophy Day to be celebrated on every 3rd Thursday of the day encourages academic exchange and highlights the contribution of philosophical knowledge in addressing global issues. November, starting 2005. This year, the third Thursday of the month falls on November 19.

Source: India Today

“Two supercomputers from India in TOP 500 list, one in top 100.”

  • Two supercomputers from India — PARAM Siddhi-AI and Mihir — have made it to the TOP500 list of the world’s most powerful supercomputers. The two systems have been ranked 63rd and 146th, respectively, and remain the only two supercomputers from India in the latest list of TOP500 released on November 18.
  • PARAM Siddhi-AI has an Rpeak capacity of 5.267 Petaflops and Rmax capacity of 4.6 Petaflops. It was led and built on NVIDIA DGX Super POD architecture. The system, jointly built by the Department of Science and Technology and Ministry of Electronics and IT under the National Supercomputing Mission, was conceptualised by Pune-headquartered Centre for Development of Advanced Computing.
  • ‘Mihir’ is a 2.8 Petaflop supercomputer which has been operational at the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecast (NCMRWF), Noida. It is one of the powerful systems owned by the Ministry of Earth Sciences and has helped improve India’s forecasting skills.
  • Japan’s Fugaku, which has an additional hardware of 442 Petaflops and has set a new world record in the supercomputing capacity, was ranked first in the list.

Source: Indian Express         

“World Toilet Day 2020: 19th November”.

  • World Toilet Day 2020 is also celebrated under ‘Swachh Bharat Mission – Grameen (SBMG)’ by the Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation (DDWS), Ministry of Jal Shakti for promoting awareness on access to Safe Sanitation and felicitating districts/states for making a significant contribution towards Swachhata.
  • Several campaigns focusing on the construction and beautification of Community Sanitary Complexes (CSCs) have been undertaken in the whole country over past one year like Swachh Sunder Samudayik Sauchalay (SSSS) and Samudayik Sauchalay Abhiyan (SSA).
  • World Toilet Day raises awareness regarding sanitation and those who don’t have access to toilets. As we know that waste of humans spreads killer diseases and toilets save lives. Therefore, this day inspires people to take an action to tackle the crisis of sanitation globally.
  • This year the theme focuses on the importance of “Sustainable sanitation and climate change”.
  • In 2001, the World Toilet organisation established World Toilet Day and was declared an official UN day in 2013. The resolution (A/RES/67/291) of declaring World Toilet Day titled, ‘Sanitation for All’ was adopted in July 2013.

Source: Jagran Josh 

“COVID Vaccine Update: Pfizer concludes phase 3 trial of COVID-19 vaccine, says shot is 95 percent effective.”

  • American drug giant Pfizer along with its German partner BioNTech confirmed on November 18, 2020 that they have concluded the phase 3 study of their COVID-19 vaccine candidate and it meets all primary efficacy endpoints.
  • Pfizer’s vaccine was found to be 95 percent effective after the last-stage trial and showed no serious side effects on older people.
  • The final efficacy analysis of the drugmaker’s ongoing Phase 3 study showed that their mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccine candidate meets all of the study’s primary efficacy endpoints.
  • The analysis of the data indicated a vaccine efficacy rate of 95 percent in participants without prior SARS-CoV-2 infection, which was the first primary objective and in participants with and without prior COVID-19 infection, which was the second primary objective.
  • As per the primary efficacy analysis, Pfizer’s BNT162b2 COVID-19 vaccine candidate was found to be 95% effective against COVID-19 beginning 28 days after the first dose.

Source: Jagran Josh

“Indian Navy receives ninth P-8I surveillance aircraft from Boeing.”

  • In a major boost to the Indian Navy’s warfare capabilities, the ninth Boeing P-8I surveillance plane was delivered to it from the US at its naval airbase in Goa on November 18, 2020.
  • The P-8I surveillance plane delivered recently to the Indian Navy is the first of the four additional planes, which were ordered by India from Boeing after the completion of the initial order for eight aircraft.
  • The P-8I surveillance aircraft is a variant of Boeing’s P-8A Poseidon aircraft, which it had developed as a replacement to the US Navy’s aging P-3 fleet.
  • The ninth P-8I surveillance aircraft is the first to be delivered under a contract for four additional aircraft that the Union Ministry of Defence had placed in 2016. The first contract worth USD 2.1 billion for initial eight aircraft had concluded on January 1, 2009.
  • The Indian Navy was the first and largest international customer for the P-8 aircraft, Boeing said in a statement. It added saying that it remains committed to supporting the modernisation and mission readiness of India’s defence forces.

Source: Jagran Josh                        

“ISRO to launch first crewless Gaganyaan flight by end of 2021”.

  • The first crewless Gaganyaan Flight which was earlier pushed to be launched in the first half of 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will now be launched only by the end of 2021.
  • The crewless flight which is a part of ISRO’s ambitious Gaganyaan Project was originally planned to be launched in 2020 but was postponed due to the ongoing pandemic.
  • Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will also eventually launch a second crewless flight in 2022 before launching humans to space. K Sivan, ISRO Chairman has informed that the process of human rating has been progressing well and is expected to be complete in the second half of 2021.
  • As part of the unmanned Gaganyaan Flight, ISRO has planned on sending a humanoid which has been developed indigenously.
  • In November 2020, ISRO also flagged off the first human-rated S200 motor case for the first crewless mission of Gaganyaan.

Source: Jagran Josh

“Pakistani Court sentences 10 years jail term to JuD Chief Hafiz Saeed.”

  • Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in Pakistan on November 19, 2020, sentenced ten years of jail to Hafiz Saeed in two terror funding related cases. He is a 26/11 Mumbai Terror Attack Mastermind and Chief of Jamat-ud-Dawah (JuD).
  • In 2020, this will be the fourth conviction of Hafiz Saeed. In February 2020, he was sentenced to 11 years in jail by an anti-terrorism court in two terror funding cases. Currently, Saeed is lodged at Lahore’s high-security Kot Lakhpat Jail.
  • The court has also sentenced 10 years imprisonment for three other terrorists of JuD. While Yahya Mujahid and Zafar Iqbal have been sentenced to a cumulative jail term of ten and a half-years, Abdul Rehman Makki has been given 6 months of imprisonment. The conviction is given by the anti-terror court in Lahore who has also ordered to confiscate all the properties of Hafiz Saeed.
  • Jamat-ud-Dawah (JuD) led by Hafiz Saeed is the front organization for Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) which is responsible for the deadly Mumbai Terror Attack in 2008 that killed at least 174 people. The attacks by LeT drew widespread global condemnation. It began on November 26 and lasted till November 29, 2008.

Source: JagranJosh                   

“Sudeep Tyagi announces retirement from all forms of cricket.”

  • Sudeep Tyagi, who played for the Indian national cricket team in four ODIs and a lone T20I as a fast bowler, announced his retirement from all forms of the game.
  • The Uttar Pradesh pacer, who was also a part of Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League, thanked his skipper, MS Dhoni.
  • The right-arm pacer made his ODI debut against Sri Lanka in December 2009 at the Feroz Shah Kotla. He also picked up a wicket but his debut was cut short when the umpires called off the match midway through the Sri Lankan innings as the pitch was considered unsafe.
  • Tyagi played his last game in India’s blue jersey during the Ahmedabad ODI against South Africa in February 2010. In his five games for the national team, he picked three wickets in the 50-over format.
  • Tyagi played 41 first-class matches and picked up 109 wickets. In List-A, he featured in 23 matches and picked up 31 wickets.

Source: Indian Express 

“PM Modi to inaugurate RE-INVEST 2020 virtually on November 26.”

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the third edition of Global Renewable Energy Investment Meeting and Expo (RE-INVEST), on November 26, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy.
  • The virtual summit will provide an international forum for investment promotion in renewable energy, said RK Singh, Minister for New and Renewable Energy. The inaugural session will be attended by Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, UK and President COP-26; and the Minister fo Energy, Utilities and Climate, Denmark
  • Singh said that the summit will send signals to the global renewable community about India’s commitment to the development and scaling up of renewable energy to meet its energy requirements in a sustainable manner.
  • The first and second edition of the summit were held in 2015 and 2018.

Source: Dailyhunt  

“Mridula Sinha, first woman Governor of Goa, passes away at 77.”

  • Former Goa Governor and BJP leader Mridula Sinha died at AIIMS in Delhi. President Ram Nath Kovind and PM Narendra Modi  were among the prominent personalities to pay tribute to the first woman Governor of Goa.
  • A native of Muzaffarpur, Sinha (77) will be remembered for starting cultural events called ‘chaand ke saath’ in the lawns of Governor House. She had also opened a cattle shed inside the Raj Bhawan. Her speeches praised Goan mangoes which she would send to dignitaries across the country.
  • A teacher and poet, Sinha joined the BJP in 1981, holding senior posts till her last stint as Governor of Goa. She was married to Dr Ram Kripal Sinha, a college lecturer in Muzaffarpur, who later served as a Cabinet minister in Bihar.

Source: Indian Express