Daily GK Update: 21st May 2020
May 21, Anti-Terrorism Day: Throwback to five terror attacks that shook India
- On May 21, 1991, former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) cadres in a suicide bombing attack at a rally in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu. Since then, the day has been declared Anti-Terrorism Day in India.
- The objective behind observing Anti-Terrorism Day is to spread the message of peace, humanity, unity, and harmony among the people, and to make them aware of the anti-social acts of terrorism. On this day, all Central Government employees and other public institutions take a pledge to make every effort to win the battle against terrorism and eradicate it from society.
- The pledge is – “We, the people of India, having abiding faith in our country’s tradition of non-violence and tolerance, hereby solemnly affirm to oppose with strength all forms of terrorism and violence. We pledge to uphold and promote peace, social harmony, and understanding among all fellow human beings and fight the forces of disruption threatening human lives and values.”
- While the day is being observed across the country to spread the message of peace and humanity, here’s a throwback to the five deadliest terror attacks on Indian soil that shook the entire nation.
Source: Times Now News
RNA extraction kit Agappe Chitra Magna launched commercially for detection of COVID 19
- Dr VK Saraswat, NITI Aayog member and President of Institute body of Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST) announced here today the commercial launch of Agappe Chitra Magna, a magnetic nanoparticle-based RNA extraction kit for use during testing for detection of COVID-19. The announcement was made by Dr VK Saraswat, at a programme attended by Prof. Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, DST, Dr Asha Kishore, Director SCTIMST, Dr HK Varma, Head Biomedical technology and scientists of the institute, through a video conference.
- The RNA extraction kit was developed by Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), Trivandrum, an Institute of National Importance of the Department of Science and Technology (DST) along with Agappe Diagnostics Ltd, an in vitro diagnostics manufacturing company based in Cochin.
Government launches scheme for 100 % solarisation of Konark sun temple & Konark town
- Speaking about the Scheme, R K Singh, MoS(i/c) for Power and MNRE has said, “Government of India launched the Scheme with an objective to take forward the Prime Minister’s vision to develop the historical Sun temple town of Konark in Odisha as ‘Surya Nagri’, to convey a message of synergy between the modern use of solar energy and the ancient Sun Temple and the importance of promoting solar energy”,.
- The Scheme envisages setting up of 10 MW grid connected solar project and various solar off-grid applications like solar trees, solar drinking water kiosks, off-grid solar power plants with battery storage etc with a 100% Central Financial Assistance (CFA) support of around Rs. 25 Crores from Government of India through Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE).
- Implementation of this Project will be done by Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA).
- The Scheme will meet all the energy requirements of Konark town with solar energy.
Source: DD News
Coronavirus Outbreak: Fifteenth Finance Commission to meet its high level group on health sector on Thursday
- The 15th Finance Commission will hold a virtual meeting with its high-level group on the health sector on Thursday to discuss the requirement of increased resources and manpower in the context of COVID-19 pandemic.
- The high-level group (HLG) on the health sector under AIIMS Director Dr Randeep Guleria had in August 2019 submitted its final report to the 15th Finance Commission and some of its key recommendations were incorporated in the first report of the Commission for the year 2020-21.
- The Commission has now decided to reconvene this HLG in the light of recent developments due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, an official statement said.
Source: First Post
MoD approves procurement of 26 defence items only from local suppliers to boost ‘Make in India’
- Government has issued Public Procurement (Preference to “Make in India’) Order 2017 vide Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Notification No.P-45021/2/2017-B.E.-II dated 15.06.2017 (as amended on 29/05/2019) to encourage ‘Make in India’ and to promote manufacturing and production of goods and services in India.
- Under this order, Department of Defence Production (DDP), Ministry of Defence has so far notified 127 items where purchase preference is given to local suppliers as per PPP-MII 2017. In order to further encourage procurement from local suppliers, 26 items out of 127 already notified, have now been notified under clause 3(a) of the Public Procurement (Preference to Make in India) Order 2017 and henceforth, procuring entities shall procure these items only from local suppliers, irrespective of purchase value, provided that the local suppliers meet the Minimum Local Content (MLC) as prescribed for each item.
Source: Ministry of Defence
News Analysis | Behind new incidents, a changed dynamic along India-China border
- A greater capability by India to patrol up to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) coupled with an increasingly assertive Chinese posture is fuelling new tensions along the border, according to former senior Indian officials.
- Indian and Chinese troops have been involved in as many as four incidents in recent weeks along the undefined LAC. On Monday, Chinese state media said the People’s Liberation Army was “tightening control” in one of the flashpoints in Galwan Valley in the western sector, after it accused India of “unilaterally” changing the status quo by “illegal construction”. A build-up has also been reported in Demchok in Ladakh.
Source: The Hindu
Exploration beneath no threat to Assam national park: OIL
- project under Assam’s Dibru-Saikhowa National Park would spell doom for its flora and fauna, including the only population of feral horses in India.
- OIL had on May 19 announced that it has received environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF) for extension drilling and testing of hydrocarbons at seven locations under the 765 sq km park straddling eastern Assam’s Dibrugarh and Tinsukia districts.
- This raised eyebrows with green activists and local organisations questioning the sanction to operate in an ecologically sensitive park declared a biosphere reserve in 1997. Dibru-Saikhowa is an island bounded by the Brahmaputra, Lohit and the Dibru rivers.
Source: The Hindu
International Tea Day 21 May
- Tea is a beverage made from the Camellia sinesis plant. Tea is the world’s most consumed drink, after water. It is believed that tea originated in northeast India, north Myanmar and southwest China, but the exact place where the plant first grew is not known. Tea has been with us for a long time. There is evidence that tea was consumed in China 5,000 years ago.
- Re-emphasizing the call from the Intergovernmental Group on Tea to direct greater efforts towards expanding demand, particularly in tea-producing countries, where per capita consumption is relatively low, and supporting efforts to address the declining per capita consumption in traditional importing countries, the General Assembly decided to designate 21 May as International Tea Day.
- The Day will promote and foster collective actions to implement activities in favour of the sustainable production and consumption of tea and raise awareness of its importance in fighting hunger and poverty.
Source: United Nations