Daily GK Update: 15th June 2020

India’s first infectious disease diagnostic lab now ready

  • India’s first infectious disease diagnostic lab is now ready. This rapid response mobile labrotary is part of government Aatmnirbhar Bharat. This labrotary was built in a record time of eight days from the date of receipt of Automotive Chassis, from Bharat Benz.
  • It is built with the support of Department of Bio-Technology. The lab is a BSL-2 facility with on site Elisa, real-time reverse tranion polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) test and Bio chemistry analysers. This lab can test Elisa about 200 per day and RTPCR about 50 per day.

Source: All India Radio

Reserve Bank constitutes an Internal Working Group to review extant ownership guidelines

  • RBI has constituted an Internal Working Group (IWG) to review the extant guidelines on ownership and corporate structure for Indian private sector banks.
  • As macroeconomic, financial market and technological developments continue to influence the future of banking and transform how the entire banking industry operates, it is felt necessary to align regulations to meet the requirements of a dynamic banking landscape.
  • In order to leverage these developments for engendering competition through entry of new players, the Reserve Bank has already issued the guidelines for on-tap licensing of universal banks as well as small finance banks.
  • The broad policy relating to ownership and control in Indian private sector banks is guided by the framework issued in February 2005. Though the overarching principle that the ownership and control of private sector banks should be well diversified and that the major shareholders are ‘fit and proper’, have remained unchanged, the specific contours have evolved over the years with specific prescriptions being given as part of licensing guidelines issued at various points in the past.

Source: Reserve Bank of India

Centre launches ‘Aarogyapath’ healthcare supply chain portal

  • In the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, the Centre has digitally launched a web-based solution for the healthcare supply chain portal ‘Aarogyapath’, to provide real-time availability of critical healthcare supplies for manufacturers, suppliers and customers.
  • The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) launched the portal on June 12.
  • According to the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, the integrated public platform can help customers in tackling a number of routinely experienced issuces like dependence on limited suppliers, time-consuming processes to identify good quality products, limited access to suppliers etc.

Source: Health world

CIMAP announces photography competition on medicinal and aromatic plants

  • Medicinal and aromatic plants have always grabbed public attention. Some of them are incredibly beautiful and some are not commonly found. Their intrinsic value to the health and well-being of human beings and animals has also been well established over the years. At the same time, not many of us are fully aware of the usefulness and medicinal value of most of these plants. In an effort to create awareness about the usefulness of these plants, the Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic plants (CIMAP) has announced a photography competition on medicinal and aromatic plants. Through this competition, CIMAP also wants to convey the message of conservation of these medicinal plants.
  • The theme of the competition is ‘Know your Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (MAPs)’. The winners will receive cash awards of Rs. 5000, Rs. 3000, and Rs. 2000 for first, second, and third prizes, respectively. In addition, there will be consolation prizes of Rs. 1000 each for another 10 entries.

Source: Ministry of Science & Technology

UTI MF appoints Rahman as CEO months after Puri’s exit left slot vacant

  • UTI Asset Management Company (AMC) on Saturday appointed Imtaiyazur Rahman (pictured) as its chief executive officer (CEO), a move that will expedite the fund house’s plan to go public. Rahman was appointed interim CEO in 2018 after Leo Puri’s term came to an end.
  • The fund house had filed a draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) in December 2019 after its PSU bank shareholders agreed to divest their holdings.
  • Investment bankers say typically Sebi approves initial public offering (IPO) documents in 45-60 days, but the process could get delayed if the regulator raises queries.

Source: Business Standard

Vasant Raiji, India’s oldest first-class cricketer, dies at 100

  • India’s oldest First Class cricketer Vasant Raiji passed away at his home on Saturday morning. He had turned 100 in January. He is survived by his wife and two daughters. A chartered accountant, he was also a well-known chronicler of cricket, having written books on C.K. Nayudu, Ranjitsinhji, Duleepsinhji, L.P. Jai and Victor Trumper.
  • A Cricket Club of India player, he represented Bombay and Baroda. A right-handed batsman, Raiji played nine First Class games in the 1940s and scored 277 runs. Raiji made his first appearance for Bombay in 1941 under Vijay Merchant, against Western Provinces, at Nagpur.
  • His fascination for cricket began as a 13-year-old, watching Lala Amarnath notch up a debut century in India’s first home Test against Douglas Jardine’s England at Bombay Gymkhana in 1933.

Source: The Hindu

Raja festival of Odisha: A celebration of womanhood and sustainable development

  • Odisha, the land of Lord Jagannath, celebrates 13 festivals in 12 months ( a popular proverb among the locals ) meaning Odisha celebrates endless festivals throughout the year. Among all this one important festival is Raja Parba which is celebrated for three days during the mid of June, preferably starts from 14th June and ends in 16th. During this period, the state remains in a state of jubilation and celebration.
  • The scorching rays of Summer of April and May calm down by the advent of South- West Monsoon in the first week of June through its tender drops. The sky that was blue during Summers turns out to be dark and white with patches of rain-bearing cloud moving here and there. It is in this occasion of soothing weather, relief from the heat and the new hope for next agricultural season Raja Parba is celebrated. Hence, it is a festival that is of great importance for the people who depend upon agriculture for their livelihood.

Source: The Times of India

India’s foreign exchange reserves surge to cross half-a-trillion mark for 1st time

  • India’s foreign exchange reserves have surged by a massive 8.22 billion dollars to cross the half-a-trillion mark for the first time. The reserves rose to 501.70 billion dollars for the week ended 5th of June, helped by a whopping rise in foreign currency assets. A RBI press release informed that foreign currency assets, a major part of the overall reserves, rose by 8.42 billion dollars to 463.63 billion dollars.
  • In the previous week, the reserves had advanced by 3.44 billion dollars to end at 493.48 billion dollars. Total value of the gold reserves, however, continued to decline. Gold reserves declined by 329 million dollars to end at 32.352 billion dollars. India’s special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund went up by 10 million dollars to 1.44 billion dollars, while the country’s reserve position also rose by 120 million dollars to 4.28 billion dollars.

Source: All India Radio

New drug for amoebiasis in the offing

  • According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Entamoeba histolytica is the third-leading cause of morbidity and mortality due to parasitic disease in humans. It causes amoebiasis or amoebic dysentery, which is highly prevalent in developing countries. A team of researchers from the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) has developed new drug molecules against the protozoa that causes amoebiasis.
  • This protozoan is anaerobic or micro-aerophilic in nature such that it cannot survive high concentrations of oxygen. However, during infection, it faces a high surge of oxygen inside the human body. The organism synthesizes large amounts of cysteine to counter oxidative stress.

Source: Ministry of Science & Technology

93-year-old poet Gulzar Dehlvi dies days after recovering from coronavirus

  • Five days after 93-year-old Urdu poet Anand Mohan Zutshi Gulzar Dehlvi returned home after recovering from Covid-19, he passed away Friday. The veteran poet’s son Anoop told The Indian Express, “He had his lunch at 2 pm, he was doing just fine. A few minutes later, he fell unconscious.”
  • An ambulance rushed him to Kailash Hospital, where he was declared dead on arrival. “Doctors did a check-up and told us he probably suffered a cardiac arrest and passed away. It’s shocking because he was doing better today. He kissed me on my forehead in the morning, had milk with biscuits, and had more small meals after that,” said Anoop.

Source: The Indian Express

SAIL Director Personnel passes away; Dharmendra Pradhan, PSUs offer tributes on Twitter

  • In an official statement released on Thursday, SAIL (Steel Authority of India Limited) announced the news of the death of its Director (Personnel) Atul Srivastava. “SAIL is extremely saddened and regretfully informs about the unfortunate demise of Atul Srivastava, Director (Personnel), at night on June 10 at Apollo Hospital, New Delhi due to cardiac arrest,” the PSU said.
  • Diagnosed negative for Coronavirus, Srivastava was suffering from a fever of 101+ for the last few days. “Earlier in the day on June 10, when he was experiencing difficulty in breathing, he was advised admission in the hospital. Accordingly, he was admitted in the evening on June 10. He had his dinner and went to sleep. But late night, he suffered cardiac arrest and was shifted to the Emergency. Despite best efforts, doctors could not revive him. Srivastava had also undergone angioplasty in the past and had co-morbidities like heart ailment, diabetes, etc,” the statement said.

Source: PSU Watch