Insight Current Affairs For UPSC ESE : 2 AUGUST ,2019
1. Omega 76: New molecule promises to address drug resistance
- Researchers at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore have designed an antimicrobial protein that promises to kill multidrug-resistant bacterium called Acinetobacter baumannii.
- They used a bioinformatics approach to design a protein called Omega 76.Experiments showed that it killed the bacterium by breaking down its cell membrane.
- Conventional drugs act by blocking specific pathways or processes in bacterial cells but bacteria evolve to gain resistance against such drugs.
- In recent times, a class of chemical molecules called antimicrobial peptides has emerged as an alternative.
- They promise to kill bacteria by breaking down their membranes. The new molecule belongs to this group.
2. The rise of the unemployment rate, within various religious groups
- The three sets of data correspond to the Employment and Unemployment Surveys conducted over the 66th Round (between July 2009-June 2010) and 68th Round (between July 2011-June 2012) by the NSSO as well as the PLFS (between July 2017-June 2018).
- The unemployment rates have been disaggregated for males and females as well as urban and rural areas.
- Workers in the “usual status” category include-
(a) persons who worked for a relatively large part of the 365 days preceding the date of the survey, and
(b) persons from among the remaining population who had worked for at least 30 days during the reference period of 365 days preceding the date of the survey.
- Category (a) refers to “principal status” and the category (b) to “subsidiary status” and the “usual status” definition includes both.
- As such, usual status is a more relaxed measure of unemployment.
3. OBC sub-categorisation panel gets an extension for 6 more months
- The Chief Justice G. Rohini commission appointed in 2017 with the task of examining the sub-categorisation of Other Backward Classes (OBCs) within 12 weeks was given yet another extension of six months by the Union Cabinet.
- Chief Justice G. Rohini commission
- It is a five-member panel formed under article 340 of Constitution.
- It is headed by former Chief Justice of Delhi High Court Justice (Retd) G. Rohini.
- Its report is expected to recommend earmarking sub-quotas for the extremely backward classes within the OBCs.
Other reservation panels
- In 1980, the Mandal Commission was set up by the erstwhile government.
- It estimated the OBC population at 52% and classified 1,257 communities as backward.
- It recommended increasing the existing quotas which were only for SC/ST, from 22.5% to 49.5% to include the OBCs.
- Its recommendations were implemented by the then government in 1990.
- In Indra Sawhney case, the Supreme Court had upheld the caste-based reservation for the OBCs as valid.
- At present, 27% quota in government jobs and educational institutions is given to OBCs, provided the annual income of the family is up to Rs 8 lakh and those with higher earnings are referred to as the ‘creamy layer’ and are not eligible for reservation.
4. KABIL Set up to Ensure Supply of Critical Minerals
- Recently Khanij Bidesh India Ltd. (KABIL) is to be set up with the participation of three Central Public Sector Enterprises namely, National Aluminium Company Ltd, Hindustan Copper Ltd.(HCL) and Mineral Exploration Company Ltd.
- The objective of constituting KABIL is to ensure a consistent supply of critical and strategic minerals to the Indian domestic market.
- It would also ensure mineral security of the Nation.
- It helps India to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and opting a greener mode of transportation which has the pledged of India in UN Climate Change Conference, Pairs, 2015.
5. Madhya Pradesh second state to have a plan for antimicrobial resistance (AMR)
- Madhya Pradesh State Action Plan for Containment of Antimicrobial Resistance (MP-SAPCAR) has been released in Bhopal.
- With this, MP has become the second state in India after Kerala to develop an action plan to manage antimicrobial resistance.
- The MP-SAPCAR focuses on a ‘One Health’ approach to containing AMR through six key strategic priority areas and multi-sectoral involvement.
- AMR is a global public health threat, according to the World Health Organization. Misuse of antibiotics in humans, animals, and aquaculture contributes to AMR.
- With rising AMR, antibiotics are increasingly becoming ineffective for treating diseases in humans.
- If there is no timely containment, AMR is likely to cause nearly 10 million deaths by 2050 and result in significant global economic losses.
6. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) allows Bank of China to offer regular banking services in India.
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) allowed Bank of China to offer regular banking services in the country. All commercial banks, like SBI, HDFC Bank, Punjab National Bank and ICICI Bank, are in the Second Schedule. Banks falling under this schedule have to adhere to the norms of the RBI.
- “We advise that the ‘Bank of China Limited’ has been included in the Second Schedule to the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934.
- In another notification, the RBI said ‘Jana Small Finance Bank Limited’ too has been included in the Second Schedule.
- Further, the name of ‘The Royal Bank of Scotland plc’ has been changed to ‘NatWest Markets Plc’ in the Second Schedule.
- Meanwhile, ‘National Australia Bank’ has ceased to be a banking company within the meaning of the Banking Regulation Act; the RBI said and added that it has been excluded from the Second Schedule.
7. Indonesia: Fight against to relocate the Komodo Dragons
- Komodo dragons, or Komodo monitors, are the largest, heaviest lizards in the world.
- They found in the Indonesian islands of Komodo, Rinca, Flores, and Gili Motang.
- Komodo National Park is one of the world heritage sites is in Indonesia is related to these dragons.
- They are listed as Vulnerable in IUCN Red List.
8. One Nation-one Ration Card scheme implemented on pilot basis in four States
- The central government has launched the One Nation-One Ration Card scheme on a pilot basis in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat and Maharashtra.
- Families who have food security cards can buy subsidized rice and wheat from any ration shop in these states.
- The scheme is aimed at providing freedom to beneficiaries, as they will not be tied to one PDS shop, reduce their dependence on shop owners and curtail corruption.
- The biggest beneficiaries will be migrant workers who move to other states to seek better job opportunities.
- The Union Government plans to extend the One nation one ration card scheme to all the states by August 2020 to enable the portability of the food security card.
9. India Slips to 7th Spot in Global GDP Rankings of 2018: WB
- According to the World Bank report, India slipped to the seventh position in the worldwide GDP rankings in 2018.
- India was at 6th place in 2017.
- India’s GDP in 2018 stood at $2.7 trillion, while Britain and France stood at $2.8 trillion.
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10. WB launches “Save Green, Stay Clean” awareness campaign for preserving greenery and keeping the environment clean
- WB launches “Save Green, Stay Clean” awareness campaign for preserving greenery and keeping the environment clean
- The State CM launched the campaign named as ‘Save Green, Stay Clean’ in Kolkata.
- Under the campaign, the State Government will distribute more than 1 lakhs saplings throughout the state for spreading of greenery.