Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 12 November 2019


Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 12 November 2019


::NATIONAL::

Country celebrates 550th birth anniversary of Guru nanak dev

  • The 550th birth anniversary of the first Sikh guru and founder of Sikhism Guru Nanak Dev is being celebrated as Prakash Parv on Tuesday. Guru Nanak Dev was born on the full moon day of Kartik month or Kartik Poornima in 1469. Devotees organise langar at various places on this occasion. Dev Deepawali is also celebrated on the full moon night of the month of Kartik.

  • President Ram Nath Kovind took part in the festivities at Sultanpur Lodhi in Kapurthala district of Punjab. Guru Nanak Dev Ji spent more than 15 years at Sultanpur Lodhi, where he attained enlightenment.

  • Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar attended the function at Huzoor Sahib Sachkhand Gurudwara in Nanded.

  • In Bihar, the three-day-long celebrations for Gurupurab will conclude today at Takhat Shri Harimandir Sahib Gurudwara in Patna.

  • Outside India, In Sri Lanka, the Consulate General of India in Jaffna commemorated the day, with its building being decorated with colourful lights last evening. This was followed by a screening of two documentaries on the Golden Temple in Amritsar. The President, Vice President and Prime Minister have greeted people on the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti.

Parliamentary Panel expresses concern over rising cancer cases

  • A Parliamentary panel has expressed serious concern over the rising number of cancer patients in the country. It suggested setting up of a High-Level Steering Committee to work out modalities for rolling out of a Hub and Spoke Model in a time-bound manner.

  • It urged the government to expand and upgrade cancer treatment infrastructure for affordable and quality care by enlarging the network of the Mumbai-based Tata Memorial Centre.

  • The recommendation was made by the Department-related Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment, Forest and Climate Change. The report was presented to Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu in New Delhi on Monday.

  • The Committee also noted with concern the very high incidence of cancer in all North Eastern States. The Committee, headed by Jairam Ramesh, expressed concern, saying that over 68 per cent of cancer patients are dying in the country.

::ECONOMY::

NBFC’s to get fund under credit guarantee scheme

  • Finance secretary Rajiv Kumar on Monday said the government is in the process of approving Rs 20,000-crore of lifeline to the fund-starved NBFCs under the partial credit guarantee scheme announced in the budget.

  • The budget had proposed a partial credit guarantee scheme worth Rs 1 lakh crore under which public sector banks would buy high-rated pooled assets of financially sound NBFCs, including housing finance companies, amounting to Rs 1 lakh crore this year under which government will provide a one-time six months partial credit guarantee to public sector banks for first loss of up to 10 percent.

  • The partial guarantee would help rework the asset liability structure within three months to have positive asset liability management in each bucket for the first three months and on cumulative basis for the remaining period.

  • As per the guidelines issued, the window for one-time partial credit guarantee will be for six months, or till such date by which Rs 1 lakh crore assets get purchased by banks.

  • Assets originated up to March 31, 2019 will only be eligible under this scheme, it said, adding assets should be standard in the books of NBFCs/HFCs on the date of sale.

IOCL to set up 2G ethanol plant at Panipat

  • Furthering government's commitment in promoting the use of environmentally friendly products, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has given environment clearance to Indian Oil Corporation Limited to set up new 2G Ethanol plant at Panipat.

  • Minister of Environment, Forest & Climate Change Prakash Javadekar announced this on Sunday. In a tweet, he said, this project not only promotes use of environmentally friendly fuel but also aids in fulfilment of government's goal of doubling farmers’ income.

  • Mr Javadekar added that Ministry has revised the Environmental Standards for Tanneries, Iron & Steel Industries and Coffee industries after due stakeholder consultations and expert advice.

  • The new Standards aim at commitment of government to ensure clean and green environment.

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::INTERNATIONAL::

Australia declares emergency due to bushfire

  • In Australia, the states of New South Wales and Queensland have declared a state of emergency, following the widespread bush fires which took at least three lives.

  • Thousands have been displaced by three days of dangerous weather conditions and bring a catastrophic threat to heavily populated areas of the nation's east. More than 120 bush fires are burning across the two states.

  • Officials say the worst danger will come for areas around Sydney tomorrow, the nation's largest city. The catastrophic warning is in place across the greater Sydney area and regions to the city's north and south.

  • In New South Wales, the blazes have scorched 9,70,000 hectares of land and destroyed 150 houses. Nine homes have been razed in Queensland.

  • New South Wales fire authorities have issued the maximum level of warning for the first time since new fire warnings were introduced a decade ago, after Australia's deadly Black Saturday disaster.

BRICS trade ministers meeting held in Brazil

  • Ahead of upcoming BRICS 2019 summit, BRICS trade ministers meeting has started in Brasilia.

  • Commerce minister Piyush Goyal is leading the Indian delegation. The meeting will focus on trade facilitation, investment promotion and cooperation in customs among other issues.

  • Getting through comparative advantages of all the BRICS countries to develop upon shared prosperity in the present global economic situation will be the focus. MoU on trade and investment promotion between agencies of all the 5 BRICS countries will be signed after the meeting.

  • Later, Power minister R K Singh will attend the meeting of BRICS power ministers where deliberations will focus on clean energy and harnessing the strengths of each other in the energy sector.

::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::

NASA detects Xray burst at outer space

  • NASA’s NICER (Neutron star Interior Composition Explorer) telescope detected a sudden spike of X Rays. The spike was caused by a massive thermo nuclear flash on the surface of a pulsar.

  • A Pulsar is a neutron star whose compact core is left behind when a massive star runs out of fuel. It later collapses under its own weight and explodes.

  • A Pulsar spins rapidly and becomes a host to several X-Ray emitting hotspot. As the object spins it produces regular pulses of high-energy radiation.

  • The Explosion releases as much as energy in 20 seconds as that released by the sun in 10 days.

  • The Explosion was caused as the hydrogen gas accredited and formed a disk. As the disk becomes denser, the gas ionizes. This traps more and more energy inwards causing the explosion.

  • Like other astronomical bodies, the sun emits X Rays as well. Therefore, studying about these sources will help to learn about the future of the sun.

::SPORTS::

Saurabh Chaudhary wins silver at Asian shooting championship

  • Saurabh Chaudhary claimed the silver medal in men's 10m air pistol event to continue India's surge at the 14th Asian Championship in Doha today.

  • World Cup and Asian Games gold-medallist shot 244.5 to finish second on the podium behind North Korea's Kim Song Guk, who won the top prize with a world record 246.5. Iran's Foroughi Javed bagged the bronze.

  • With 583, both Chaudhary and Abhishek Verma had qualified for the finals in seventh and sixth place. However, Verma had to be satisfied with a fifth-place finish in the eight-man final.

  • The trio of Chaudhary, Verma and Sharvan Kumar bagged the team bronze with a total of 1740 in the qualifying, finishing behind China (1745) and Korea (1744). Both Chaudhary and Verma had already secured their Olympic quotas in the earlier competitions.

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