Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 10 MARCH 2019
EC warns use of defence staff images for election campaigning
- Taking cognisance of a political banner bearing Wing Commander
AbhinandanVarthaman’s portrait along with the photographs of Prime
Minister NarendraModi, BJP president Amit Shah and others, the Election
Commission on Saturday said “strictest action” would be taken in such
cases once the model code of conduct was in place.
- After a picture of the banner was brought to the notice of the
Commission, spokesperson SheyphaliSharan said: “ECI already has
instructions issued on such matters. Once the model code of conduct
comes into force, the commission will take strictest action in such
cases, if the instructions are violated.” The code comes into effect
once the election schedule is announced.
- In a letter to the recognised parties issued later on
Saturday, the Commission said it had been brought to its notice that
some political parties were using the photographs of defence personnel
in advertisements as part of their political campaigning.
- The Commission’s advisory said: “The armed forces of a nation
are the guardian of its frontiers, security and the political system.
They are apolitical and neutral stakeholders in a modern democracy. It
is, therefore, necessary that the political parties and leaders exercise
great caution while making any reference to the Armed Forces in their
Centre amends law to bring in tourism project in Aves island
- The Environment Ministry has amended laws that now allow a
proposed tourism project in the Aves Island, of the Andaman and Nicobar
island (A&N) territory, to come up.
- The project was the only one of three high-profile proposed
tourism projects that did not get a clearance from an expert committee
on coastal clearance in February. This was because the proposed Aves
Island project was located 20 m away from the High Tide Line(HTL) and
existing rules required such projects to be at least 50 m away.
- An official said that while the new rules did ease the way for
the Aves Island project, it was also done to broadly align the changes
in coastal zone regulations in the country’s mainland States with the
- In December, the government had issued a coastal regulation
zone notification that largely allows tourism and development projects
located near coasts in mainland States to come up closer to the sea. It
also issued an Island Zone Protection Notification in January 2019 to
allow similar relaxations in the A&N Islands.
- After site visits, the committee in February recommended two
of them at Lalaji Bay on Long Island and at Smith Island for island
protection zone clearance, with caveats. However, the Aves Island
project was still red-flagged primarily because of the 50 m clause.
SAT orders IRDAI to renew license to TPA services firm
- In a rare instance, the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT)
has quashed an order issued by the Insurance Regulatory and Development
Authority of India (IRDAI) and directed the insurance regulator to renew
the licence of an entity that was cancelled by IRDAI in July 2016.
- While directing IRDAI to renew the licence of Happy Insurance
TPA Services within four weeks, the tribunal said that the stance taken
by the regulator was not ‘justifiable’ and that it acted
‘discriminately’ since it could have levied a monetary penalty rather
than rejecting the application.
- Incidentally, this is the first time since August last year
that the tribunal has passed an order in a matter related to the
insurance regulator. The roots of the matter go back to October 2015,
when Happy Insurance TPA applied to IRDAI for renewal of its licence to
act as a third-party administrator for health insurance.
- “IRDAI has its limitations. Their exposure to a specialised
tribunal is limited and while being strong on facts, their orders are
sometimes found to be wanting of a quasi-judicial style of writing
- With more challenge to authority of IRDAI and SAT’s guidance,
insurance law jurisprudence will grow,” added Mr.Agrawal, who had
earlier represented IRDAI in matters against SBI Life Insurance, Sahara
Life Insurance and Reliance Nippon Life Insurance.
India bags prize at City Gate Tourism Awards
- The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India has won the First
Prize in the category of TV Cinema Spot at the prestigious international
Golden City Gate Tourism Awards 2019.
- The Golden City Gate Tourism Multi-media Awards are given
annually in various categories related to the Tourism and Hospitality
sectors. The ‘Golden City Gate’ is a creative multi-media international
competition for countries, cities, regions and hotels.
- The entries received for the awards are judged by an
international jury comprising film and tourism experts. The annual award
ceremony takes place at ITB Berlin, the world’s leading tourism trade
- The Ministry of Tourism has launched the Incredible India 2.0
Campaign in September 2017. The 2.0 Campaign marks a shift from generic
promotions across the world to market specific promotional plans and
- Thematic creatives on different Niche tourism products have
been produced and are being used in the Campaign, to cater to diverse
- These include the above Television Commercials on Yoga,
Wellness, Wildlife, Luxury and Cuisine, which have been very well
received the world over, registering about 155 million views on social
- The commercials have been produced in English with voice overs
in 9 international languages, viz. German, French, Spanish, Italian,
Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Arabic.
U.S report suggests North korea may bebuilding missile or nuclear
- North Korea may be preparing for a missile or space launch,
U.S. news outlet NPR has reported, based on satellite image analysis of
a key facility near Pyongyang.
- NPR said the images of Sanumdong, one of the facilities
Pyongyang has used to produce intercontinental ballistic missiles, were
taken days before U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader
Kim Jong-un met in Hanoi for their high-stakes summit, which ended in
- It added that rail cars and cranes can also be seen at a yard.
“When you put all that together, that’s really what it looks like when
the North Koreans are in the process of building a rocket,” Jeffrey
Lewis, a researcher at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies
at Monterey, was quoted as saying by NPR on Friday.
- The Sanumdong analysis comes days after the specialised
website 38 North and the Center for Strategic and International Studies
said Pyongyang may have resumed operations at its long-range rocket
launch site at Sohae, based on their study of satellite imagery from
- The development is likely to further compound Washington’s
frustration over the lack of progress in its bid to get the North to
give up its atomic arsenal, especially after the February 27-28 summit
between Mr. Trump and Mr. Kim collapsed without a joint statement.
- U.S. officials have said Washington believes the “final, fully
verified denuclearisation” of North Korea is still possible by the end
of Mr. Trump's first term.
::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
Scientists develop nano particles to check status of frozen food
- Researchers from the Indian Council of Agricultural
Research-Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (ICAR-CIFT), Kochi,
Kerala, in collaboration with the University of Wisconsin, Madison,
U.S., have now found a way using gold nanoparticles that they
synthesised to help tell if frozen food is still edible.
- The nanoparticles change colour in response to changes in
temperature. They become ruby red (similar to the colour of red wine) at
-18° C and turn purple when the temperature rises. At room temperature,
their colour is dark grey.
- To synthesise the nanoparticles, the researchers used chitosan,
a natural biodegradable polysaccharide that was extracted from marine
waste such as shrimp and crab shell. A solution of chitosan and gold
chloride solution was heated for about 30 minutes at 90° C.
- The nanoparticles remained stable when tested at -18° C. Their
colour and other physical properties remained intact even at the end of
30 days of testing at -18° C.
- Explains Dr. C.O. Mohan, Senior Scientist, ICAR-CIFT, Kochi
and corresponding author of the work that has been published in npj
Science of Food , “The colour change of the nanoparticles is
irreversible. So once they change from red to purple or grey when the
temperature increases, the original colour cannot be regained even if
the temperature is brought back to -18° C.”
- He adds, “They can be attached to the outer surface of the
food or pharmaceutical packs as a visible indicator without coming in
contact with the product.”
- According to him, such smart indicators can be made using a
very small quantity of chitosan-gold nanoparticle solution to identify
frozen temperature abuse. It would cost less than Rs. 2 a pack. The team
is also working to develop smart indicators from nanoparticles of other
metals to further reduce the cost.
Aussies beat India to level series
- Australia defeated India by 4 wickets in the fourth One-Day
International, levelling the five-match series 2-2 in Mohali on Sunday
- India scored 358 for the loss of 9 wickets in the stipulated
- ShikharDhawan scored 143 runs including 18 boundaries and 3
sixers while R G Sharma scored 95 runs.
- For Australia, P J Cummings took maximum 5 wickets.