Daily Current Affairs - 17th May 2020

ARCI scientists develop next-generation biodegradable metal implants

  • The scientists of Advanced Research Centre for powder metallurgy and new materials along with Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute of Medical Sciences (SCTIMST) have developed new biodegradable implant. The implants were developed from Iron-Manganese alloy.
  • The alloy is highly applicable for making biodegradable orthopedic implant applications and stents. These implants participate in the healing process and gradually degrade maintaining the mechanical integrity. They do not leave out any residues in the human body. They are certainly better alternatives to current implants.

Armed Forces Day 2020: 16th May

  • Armed Forces Day is observed on the third Saturday in May. In 2020, it falls on the 16th of May. This day is celebrated to pay tribute to the men and women who served the United States Armed Forces.
  • Armed Forces Day is a joint celebration of all six branches of the U.S. military: Army, Air Force, United States Marine Corps (United States Marines), Coast Guard, US Navy, and therefore the newly created Space Force.

Army's only cavalry unit to replace horses with tanks

  • The Indian Army is to convert the 61st cavalry, the only horse serving cavalry in the world into a regular armoured regiment with tanks.
  • The main aim of the plan is to convert the 61st cavalry into a combat force. This is largely a ceremonial unit that is based in Jaipur.
  • The 61st cavalry was raised in 1953. It was raised by amalgamating the horse mounted cavalry units in the princely states of India. The soldiers in the cavalry are armed with lances

Delhi Police get advanced gear to detect body temperature from safe distance

  • Delhi Police has launched an equipment “Thermal Corona Combat Headgear” in collaboration with Indian Robotics Solution (IRS). This equipment has been launched to protect the frontline corona warriors from the COVID-19.
  • This unique equipment enables the police personnel to detect temperature of a large number of people from a distance of 10-15 metres and also helps in enforcing social distancing norms.

Foreign exchange reserves surge by USD 4.2 bn to USD 485.31 bn: RBI

  • India's foreign exchange reserves jumped by 4.235 million dollars to reach billion 485.313 dollars in the week ended 8th May. Foreign currency assets, a major part of the overall reserves rose by 4.233 billion dollars to 447.548 billion dollars. In the previous week, the reserves had increased by 1.622 billion dollars to end at 481.078 billion dollars.
  • Gold reserves rose by 13 million dollars to end at 32.291 billion dollars. India's special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund declined by three million dollars to 1.423 billion dollars, while the country's reserve position also dipped by eight million dollars to 4.051 billion dollars.

Fourth Tranche of Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan announced

  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman announced the fourth tranche of Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan.
  • The Government of India is to bring upon policy reforms in eight sectors. This includes coal, minerals, defence production, civil aviation (air space managements, air ports, MRO (Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul)), power distribution companies in the union territories, space, atomic energy.
  • Commercial mining is to brought in coal sector. The mining is to be done on revenue sharing basis and make coal available at market prices. The Coal bed methane is also to be auctioned.
  • GoI intends to make India a MRO hub. Most of the aircrafts in India go abroad to get their maintenance and repair works done. Therefore, GoI has allocated Rs 2000 crores to establish these MRO zones within the country.
  • The Power Distribution Companies in Union Territories are to be privatized. A Tariff Policy is to be announced soon to achieve this.
  • Private Sectors are to be allowed as co-traveller in space journey of India. The private sectors will be allowed to use ISRO facilities.

Indian Army considering proposal to allow civilians in force for 3 years

  • In order to help the country fight unemployment generated due to COVID-19 and also citing resurgence of nationalism and patriotism, the Indian Army has launched “ToD”. ToD is Tour of Duty. ToD is a three year internship for youths to work as officers and soldiers in the Indian Army.
  • ToD is for those persons who do not wish to take defence services as a career, but still want to experience adventure and thrills in armed forces.
  • The step will also help address the unemployment crisis created by COVID-19 in the country.

National dengue day 2020, May 16

  • On 16th May Every year India observes National Dengue Day suggested by the Union Health Ministry to create awareness about measures on dengue prevention and to control the spread of the vector-borne disease and preparedness before the transmission season of dengue begins.

National Migrant Information System developed by NDMA

  • The National Disaster Management Authority launched the National Migrant Information System. It is a central online repository for the migrant workers.
  • The online portal will help in inter-state communication to facilitate smooth movement of migrant workers. The portal also has added advantages such as contact tracing that will help in COVID-19 response work.
  • The repository will hold details such as name, mobile number, age, destination district, date of travel and originating district.

New Super-Earth with 617-Day Year Discovered

  • The scientists from New Zealand have discovered the “Super Earth”. It potentially holds the conditions to sustain human life.
  • The super earth is one of the handful of planets discovered that are of the same size and orbiting distance as that of the earth.
  • The planet is larger than the earth and hence the name “Super Earth”. The planet could be cold according to the scientists as the star is much smaller than the sun.
  • Due to this reason, water may not exist in its liquid state, but might occur as ice. As the planet is heavier in mass, it might take 617 days to revolve around its star.
  • The super earth, according to the scientist might possess “Goldilocks Zone” in the future.

Pradhan Mantri Ujjawala Yojana completes 4 years of success

  • The Pradhan Mantri Ujjawala Yojana was launched in May 2016. The scheme has successfully completed four years of its implementation.
  • The scheme has so far helped more than 8 crore families. Around Rs 8,432 crores have been transferred through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) under the scheme.

Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana to be launched by Chhattisgarh

  • The Chhattisgarh State Government is to launch the Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana. The scheme is to be launched on May 21, 2020. The scheme is being l launched to commemorate the death anniversary of the former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.
  • Under the scheme, the farmers are to be paid Rs 10,000 per acre for the crops such as sugarcane, corn and paddy.

Sikkim celebrates 45th State Day

  • The Sikkim Government celebrates its 45th Statehood Day. Every year Sikkim celebrates its State Day in May 16 as the state came into existence on this day in 1975.
  • After India became independent in 1947, Sikkim continued to enjoy the protectorate status with the republic of India. However, in 1973, anti-royalist riots occurred in the state. The monarch was eventually deposed in 1975. A referendum led to the state joining India.
  • Sikkim was the 22nd state to join Union of India. Sikkim borders three countries namely China, Bhutan and Nepal.

Veteran Bengali author, Sahitya Akademi winner Debesh Roy passes away at 84

  • Veteran Bengali author Debesh Roy, who had five decades of career as a writer, passed away. He was awarded with the Sahitya Akademi award for his novel ‘Teesta Parer Brittanto’.
  • He has penned various renowned books such as Borisaler Jogen Mondal, Manush Khun Kore Keno, and Samay Asamayer Brittanto.

Zubair Iqbal appointed MD J-K Bank, Chibber to continue as chairman

  • Senior vice president of HDFC Bank, Zubair Iqbal has been appointed as new managing director of Jammu and Kashmir Bank by Jammu and Kashmir Government. Iqbal will have a three-year tenure.
  • RK Chibber, who currently holds the position of Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of J&K Bank, will continue to serve as the Chairman of the bank for the next three years.
  • The appointments are based upon the continuous directions by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to separate the positions of Chairman and Managing Director for better governance.