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News:Researchers are calculating mathematical figure ‘R0’ to understand the nature of transmission of Coronavirus,
- Basic reproduction number(R0):It measures the rate at which a virus is transmitted based on the average number of people who will contract the virus from a person who has already been infected.R0= new infections/existing infections
- Example:If the number of people diagnosed with a disease increases from four to eight in two days,it is likely to increase to 16 two days later, or in four days from the start.This makes the R0 two.Hence,higher the R0, the more contagious the infection.
News:Operation Shield has been announced by the Delhi Government to fight against Coronavirus.Under this,a six pronged strategy “SHIELD” has been prepared which stands for a) sealing b) home quarantine c) isolation and tracing d) essential supply e) local sanitation and f) door-to-door checks.
News:The Department of Personnel and Training has launched a portal named iGOT — Integrated Government Online Training platform to fight against COVID-19.
- Aim:It is an E-learning platform to promote capacity building among the frontline workers to handle CoVID-19 pandemic.
- Target Group:Doctors, Nurses, ASHA workers, Civil Defence Officers, Police Organisations, NCC corps, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) among others.
- The platform will be hosted on the DIKSHA platform.
Digital Infrastructure for Knowledge Sharing(DIKSHA) Platform:
- Launched Year: 2017
- Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Human Resource and Development.
- Aim:To provide a digital platform to teachers giving them an opportunity to learn and train themselves and connect with the teacher community.
News:The central government has allowed states to raise Rs 3.2 lakh crore in net market borrowings in the ongoing financial year.
Borrowing by the Centre and the States:The Constitution makes the following provisions with regard to the borrowing powers of the Centre and the states:
- The Central government can borrow either within India or outside upon the security of the Consolidated Fund of India or can give guarantees but both within the limits fixed by the Parliament.However,as of now there is no such law.
- A state government can borrow within India (and not abroad) upon the security of the Consolidated Fund of the State or can give guarantees, but both within the limits fixed by the legislature of that state.
- The Central government can make loans to any state or give guarantees in respect of loans raised by any state.Any sums required for the purpose are to be charged on the Consolidated Fund of India.
- A state cannot raise any loan without the consent of the Centre, if there is still outstanding any part of a loan made to the state by the Centre or in respect of which a guarantee has been given by the Centre.
- Article 292: Borrowings by the Government of India
- Article 293: Borrowing by States
News:State Bank of India(SBI) has raised $100 million in green bonds through private placement.
- Green Bonds:They are fixed-income financial instruments issued for funding of specific projects which have positive environmental and climate benefits.
- Categories: SEBI has allocated eight categories as green projects: a) renewable energy b) clean transportation c) sustainable water management d) climate change e) energy efficiency f) sustainable waste management and g) land use and h) biodiversity conservation.
- Bonds:It is a debt instrument in which an investor loans money to an entity (typically corporate or government) which borrows the funds for a defined period of time at a variable or fixed interest rate.
- Private Placement:It is a sale of stock shares or bonds to pre-selected investors and institutions rather than on the open market.
- Climate Bonds Initiative(CBI):It is an investor-focused not-for-profit initiative launched solely to mobilize a $100 trillion bond market for climate change solutions.
News: Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), for the first time, explicitly blamed Syria for toxic attacks in 2017.
- The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention(1997). It has 193 members including India.
- Established: 1997
- Headquarters: The Hague, Netherlands.
- Goal: Preventing chemical warfare
- Destroying all existing chemical weapons under international verification by the OPCW.
- Monitoring chemical industry to prevent chemical weapons from re-emerging.
- Providing assistance and protection to States Parties against chemical threats.
- Fostering international cooperation to strengthen implementation of the Convention and promote the peaceful use of chemistry.
News: Under the Lifeline Udan initiative, 167 flights have transported over 248 tonnes of essential medical supplies across the country during Covid-19 lockdown.
- Lifeline Udan is a government initiative for air transport of medical cargo and essential supplies across India at the time of the Covid-19 crisis.
- It has been launched by Ministry of Civil Aviation
News: The Centre has sanctioned 15 thousand crore rupees for India COVID-19 Emergency Response and Health System Preparedness Package.
- The funds sanctioned will be utilized for immediate COVID-19 Emergency Response (amount of Rs.7774 crores) and rest for medium-term support (1-4 years).
- Development of diagnostics and COVID-19 dedicated treatment facilities,
- centralized procurement of essential medical equipment and drugs required for treatment of infected patients,
- strengthen and build resilient National and State health systems to support prevention and preparedness for future disease outbreaks,
- setting up of laboratories and improve surveillance activities,
- biosecurity preparedness,
- pandemic research and conduct risk communication activities.
- Implementing Agency: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
News: Operation Decisive Storm has declared ceasefire in Yemen for 2 weeks
- Operation Decisive Storm is a Saudi-Arabia led military intervention in Yemen which began in 2015.
- Members: Saudi Arabia, Sudan, UAE, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Senegal.
- Objective: Restoration of legitimacy for the legally chosen leader of Yemen.
News: Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) has prepared a National Analytical Platform for Dealing with Intelligent Tracing, Tracking and Containment (NAADI).
- It is a data science-based tool which aims to make easy the task of tracking the movements of Covid-19 patients or quarantined people across the country.