first of a kind edition of SDG Gender Index 2019 has been
released.India has been ranked at 95th among 129 countries on the Index.
SDG Gender Index has been developed by Equal Measures 2030 which is a
joint effort of regional and global organisations.
index accounts for 14 out of 17 SDGs(sustainable development goals) that
cover aspects such as poverty, health, education, literacy, political
representation and equality at the workplace.
score of 100 reflects the achievement of gender equality in relation to
the targets set for each indicator.But a score of 50 signifies that a
country is about halfway to meeting a goal.
index found that the world is far from achieving gender equality with 1.4
billion girls and women living in countries that get a very poor grade.
The global average score of the 129 countries which represent 95% of the
world’s girls and women is 65.7 out of 100 (poor in the index).
2.8 billion girls and women live in countries that get either a very poor
(59 and below) or poor score (60-69) on gender equality.Just 8% of the
world’s population of girls and women live in countries that received a
good gender equality score(80-89) and no country achieved an excellent
overall score of 90 or above.
performs best in health (79.9), hunger & nutrition (76.2), and energy
(71.8).But its lowest goal scores are on partnerships (18.3, in the bottom
10 countries worldwide), industry, infrastructure and innovation (38.1)
and climate (43.4).
government has rejected the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC)
reference to Jammu and Kashmir in a communiqué adopted at its summit
meeting in the Saudi Arabia.
14th summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) was held in
Mecca,Saudi Arabia.The OIC had reiterated its support for the legitimate
rights of the people of Jammu and Kashmir(J&K) and has also appointed
a special envoy for the state of J&K.
of Islamic Cooperation is an international organization founded in 1969,
consisting of 57 member states.It is the second largest intergovernmental
organization after the United Nations.
organisation states that (a)it is the collective voice of the Muslim world
and (b) works to safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world
in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony.The OIC has
permanent delegations to the United Nations and the European Union.
the 45th session of the Foreign Ministers’ Summit in May 2018, Bangladesh
had suggested that India where more than 10% of the world’s Muslims lives
should be given Observer status but Pakistan had opposed the proposal.
External Affairs Minister had addressed the Inaugural session of the 46th
Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the OIC in Abu Dhabi after
India was invited by United Arab Emirates(UAE) as the Guest of Honour.
Reserve Bank of India(RBI) has released a report titled “Benchmarking
India’s Payments Systems”.The report provides a comparative position of
the payments ecosystem in India relative to comparable payments systems
and usage trends in other major economies.
study has found that India has a strong regulatory system and robust large
value and retail payments structure which have contributed to the rapid
growth in the volume of transactions.
report says that India is required to take further efforts to bring down
the volume of paper clearing and increase acceptance infrastructure to
enhance digital payments.
report said that the relatively high level of cash in circulation offers
scope for higher level of digitisation of payments.Also,the decline in
cheque usage has been slow.
growth in the volume of payments systems transactions has been strong and
steady.There has also been an increase in point-of-sale terminals
including mobile terminals.But this may not be enough to cater to a large
report has also stated that digital communications infrastructure in the
form of a robust mobile network is growing strong but broadband
infrastructure lags behind.
World Bank has released its Global Economic Prospects report, 2019.The
report has forecasted that the World economy will expand 2.6% in 2019
compared with a projection of 2.9% it made in January, 2019.
growth was downgraded due to (a)trade conflicts (b)financial strains
(c)unexpectedly sharp slowdowns in wealthier countries and (d)build-up of
report has warned that the world’s poorest countries will face the most
daunting challenges due to entrenched poverty, fragility and geographic
World Bank has projected that India will grow at 7.5% in the next three
years supported by robust investment and private consumption.
report said that Private consumption and investment will benefit from
strengthening credit growth amid more accommodative monetary policy with
inflation having fallen below the Reserve Bank of India’s target.
World Bank has said that India will continue to retain the position of being
the fastest growing emerging economy.And by 2021,its growth rate is
projected to be 1.5% more than China’s 6%.
Supreme Court has directed the Puducherry government not to implement
decisions having financial implications which could be taken during the
direction comes after Centre and Puducherry Lieutenant Governor (LG) filed
a plea seeking to maintain the status quo that existed before the Madras
High Court order.
High Court had ruled that LG does not have the powers to interfere or act
independently in the day-to-day affairs of the elected government.
matters of finance,administration and service matters,the High Court had
said that LG could only act on the advice of the council of ministers.
Madras High Court order had effectively dismissed a clarification issued
by the Home Ministry in 2017 which had said that the lieutenant governor
has powers to act independently and is not bound by the council of
Puducherry legislature was created through a parliamentary law, based on
an enabling provision in Article 239A of the Constitution.
Government of Union Territories Act,1963 provides for a Legislative
Assembly of Puducherry with a Council of Ministers to govern the Union Territory
of Pondicherry.The same Act also says that the UT will be administered by
the President of India through an Administrator(LG).
first-ever World Food Safety Day adopted by the United Nations General
Assembly in December 2018 will be celebrated on 7 June,2019 under the
theme “Food Safety, everyone’s business”.
to World Health Organisation (WHO),an estimated 600 million cases of
food-borne diseases occur annually around the world.This translates into
one in 10 people falling ill after eating contaminated food.
under 5 years of age carry 40% of the food-borne disease burden with
1,25,000 deaths every year.
WHO has said that food borne diseases is an increasing threat to human
health which impede socio-economic development by straining health care
systems and harming national economies, tourism and trade.
has also recommended various ways to ensure food safety such as
(a)complying with global food standards (b)establishing effective
regulatory food control systems (c)applying good agricultural practices
and (d)building capacities of consumers to make healthy food choices.
has celebrated the 50 years of LGBTQ+ movement with a doodle.The doodle
slideshow takes the viewer through five decades of Pride history starting
from 1969 to present.
Pride Parade is a symbol of celebration and liberation for the entire
movement dates back to 1969 in New York when lesbian, gay, bisexual,
transgender and queer persons clashed following a police raid on the
Stonewall Inn, a gay bar at Christopher Street.
riot fuelled further protests and led to LGBT pride marches being organised
on a much larger public scale.
is considered as ‘LGBT Pride Month’ to commemorate the Stonewall riots of
1969.Many pride events are held during this month to recognise the impact
LGBT people have had world over.
2018,Supreme Court had decriminalised same-sex relationships in India by
partially striking down the provisions of Section 377 of the Indian Penal
377 criminalised voluntary carnal intercourse against the order of nature
with any man, woman or animal.Though the law did not explicitly mention
LGBTQI community,the phrase against the order of nature came to be
referred for same-sex sexual relations.
Authority of India has signed a technical assistance agreement with Boeing
to develop a 10-year Air Traffic Management (ATM) modernisation roadmap
objective of the agreement is to develop a roadmap for AAI to use as a
guide in the modernisation of the Indian National Airspace System (NAS)
based on global and local best practices to optimally utilise airspace
capacity, enhance communications and invest in navigation, surveillance
and air traffic management.
will analyse current technologies and processes to identify areas where
efficiency improvements can be implemented while maintaining a practical
and safe airspace system.
part of the project, Boeing will also work closely with the Directorate
General of Civil Aviation, airlines operating in India, airport operators
and other airspace stakeholders like the US-India Aviation Cooperation
Airports Authority of India or AAI is a statutory body created through the
Airports Authority of India Act,1994.It works under the Ministry of Civil
is responsible for creating, upgrading, maintaining and managing civil
aviation infrastructure in India.It provides Communication Navigation
Surveillance / Air Traffic Management(CNS/ATM) services over Indian
airspace and adjoining oceanic areas.
Etna which is the largest of Italy’s three active volcanoes has been
ejecting ash and lava once again.This new phase of eruptions has started
as two new cracks in the volcano opened up sending lava down its flank.
National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology(INGV) has said that prior
activity took place before the eruption with a series of seismic events
occurring in the weeks leading up to two fissures opening on Mount Etna’s
New Southeast Crater.
Etna is the largest active volcano in Europe and one of the world’s most
frequently erupting volcanoes.It is also the volcano with the longest
record of continuous eruption.
is located near the east coast of the island of Sicily in Italy, Mount
Etna is 10,900 feet tall.The mountain’s largest feature is the Valle del
Bove (Valley of the Ox),a large horseshoe-shaped caldera on the eastern
sits on the active fault between the African plate and the Ionian
microplate, which are both being subducted together beneath the Eurasian
June 2013,it was added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.Due to
its history of recent activity and nearby population,Mount Etna has been
designated a Decade Volcano by the United Nations.
team of scientists and researchers from the College of Fisheries,
Mangaluru has ascertained the causes behind the deaths of two dolphins
which were recently stranded along the shore of the Mukka and Sasihitlu
beach, Mangaluru, Karnataka.
to the team, the dolphins could have died due to various environmental
conditions such as extreme tidal fluxes, extreme weather condition, solar
storms, human activities, illness or injury or pollution (toxic effects of
India, Dolphins are protected species as per the Indian Wildlife
(Protection) Act, 1972. The government has also declared Gangetic Dolphin
as the national aquatic animal. Gangetic dolphin is listed as Endangered
in the IUCN Red List.
also has a sanctuary for conservation of Gangetic Dolphin known as the
Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary, located in Bhagalpur District of
study published by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has found
antibiotic resistant organisms in the digestive tracts of 2 out of every 3
healthy persons that it tested.
study was based on analysis of stool samples of 207 individuals who had
not taken any antibiotic for at least a month and did not suffer from any
maximum resistance was seen for cephalosphorins (60%) and fluoroquinolones
(41.5%). These are two commonly used antibiotics, the first is used for
treating UTIs, skin or soft tissue infections and the latter for common
a high prevalence of antibiotic resistance among healthy people has
pointed out a rapid spread of antibiotic resistance in the Indian population
which is a cause of concern.
resistance is a type of antimicrobial resistance. Anti-microbial
resistance is the ability of a microorganism (like bacteria, fungi,
viruses, and some parasites) to stop an antimicrobial (such as antibiotics,
antifungals, antivirals and antimalarials) from working against it. The
World Health Organization (WHO) recognises AMR as a serious threat to
global public health.
two major causes of antibiotic resistance are: a) Inappropriate use of
antibiotics, b) Rampant use of antibiotics in livestock and poultry
Nipah virus has resurfaced in Kerala with the confirmation of the
infection in a 23-year-old college student. Earlier, in 2018, there was a
Nipah outbreak in Kozhikode and Malappuram districts of Kerala.
Virus is a zoonotic virus i.e. transmitted from animals to humans. It is a
member of the genus Henipavirus in the family Paramyxoviridae. Fruit bats
of the Pteropodidae family are the natural host of Nipah virus.
was first recognised in 1998-99 during an outbreak among pig farmers in
Malaysia and Singapore.
virus can be transmitted to humans from animals (such as bats or pigs), or
contaminated foods and can also be transmitted directly from
virus infection in humans causes asymptomatic infection, acute respiratory
infection and fatal encephalitis. It has a high case fatality rate
estimated to range between 40 and 75%
is no treatment or vaccine available for either people or animals. The
primary treatment for humans is supportive care.
research group led by Washington State University scientists has found a
way to turn daily plastic waste products into jet fuel. The research has
been published in the journal Applied Energy.
research team had tested low-density polyethylene and mixed a variety of waste
plastic products, like water bottles, milk bottles, and plastic bags, and
ground them down to around 3mm
plastic granules were then placed on top of activated carbon in a tube
reactor at a high temperature, ranging from 430 degrees Celsius to 571
degrees Celsius. The carbon is a catalyst, or a substance that speeds up a
chemical reaction without being consumed by the reaction.
testing several different catalysts at different temperatures, the best
result they had produced a mixture of 85% jet fuel and 15% diesel fuel.
pollution is one of the biggest environmental crisis today. Researchers
estimate that more than 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic has been produced
since the early 1950s. About 60% of that plastic has ended up in either a
landfill or the natural environment.