Study Material | Prelims Analysis

Daily Current Affairs


  • 10 Sep 2019
  • 17 min read
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Conference of Military Medicine For Sco Member States


In News:

  • The first conference of Military Medicine for Shanghai Co-operation Organisation (SCO) Member States will be held in New Delhi on 12 – 13 September, 2019.


  • The conference will be the first Military co-operation event hosted by India, under the SCO Defence Co-operation Plan 2019-2020, after it became a SCO Member State in 2017.

Purpose of conference:

  • To share best practices in the field of military medicine, build capacities and overcome common challenges. During the conference, the Indian Armed Forces will also demonstrate the Rapid Action Medical Team and organise a visit for the delegates to the Army Research and Referral Hospital.


  • The conference will be conducted by the Indian Armed Forces under the aegis of Headquarters Integrated Defence Staff (HQ IDS).


  • The SCO Member States will be represented by senior military medical practitioners. Dialogue Partners Nepal and Sri Lanka will also be sending their delegations to participate in the Conference. 






In News:

  • Chandrayaan-2's Vikram lander lost contact with ground stations minutes before its planned touchdown on the lunar surface.


  • The Vikram Lander descent was initiated as planned and normal performance was observed up to an altitude of 2.1 km above the lunar surface. Subsequently, the communication from the Lander to the ground stations was lost.
  • The Orbiter would continue to observe the moon’s surface and its exosphere for a year by encircling the natural satellite.   
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was with the scientists patted them for their hard work and asked them to move forward.
  • Chandrayaan-2's Orbiter, Lander and the Rover
  • The composite Chandrayaan-2 has the orbiter, the Vikram lander and the Pragyaan rover. The Orbiter carried the lander Vikram. The lander, in turn, carries in its belly the rover.
  • The mandate of the Orbiter is to move around the moon for over a year. It has eight payloads including two cameras for mapping the moon and six other devices to study the lunar exosphere and ionosphere, detecting the presence of water or ice and to map the lunar mineralogy.
  • The lander Vikram, named after the Father of Indian Space Programmes Dr Vikram Sarabhai was supposed to carry out studies using three instruments onboard it like quakes on the moon due to the earth’s gravity and thermal conductivity.
  • The rover Pragyaan has two devices to probe the elemental composition of lunar soil near its landing site and derive the elemental abundance there.


Fake News

In News:

  • BBC and some of the biggest names in journalism and technology have come together and announced series of measures to tackle "fake news".


  • Major publishers, Google, Twitter and Facebook have helped devise the scheme. It follows criticism of big technology firms for failing to do enough to prevent the spread of "false news".
  • Earlier this summer, the BBC convened a Trusted News Summit, bringing together senior figures from major global technology firms and publishing to help tackle the problem.

The group drew-up new plans including:

  • Early warning system: creating a system so that organisations can alert each other rapidly when they discover disinformation that threatens human life or disrupts democracy during elections.
  • Media education: a joint online media education campaign to support and promote media education messages.
  • Voter information: co-operation on civic information around elections, so there is a common way to explain how and where to vote.
  • Shared learning: particularly around high-profile elections.

Fake news?

  • Fake news are “news stories that have no factual basis but are presented a s news.” It includes deliberate misinformation or hoaxes which are spread via traditional print and broadcast news media or online social media.
  • According to Martina Chapman (Media Literacy Expert), the three M elements to fake news are:
  • Mistrust,
  • Misinformation and
  • Fake news stories can deceive people by looking like trusted websites or using similar names and web addresses to reputable news organisations. It is written and published often with sensationalist, exaggerated, or patently false headlines that grab attention. 



Task Force For National Infrastructure Pipeline


In News:

  • The government has constituted a task force for drawing up National Infrastructure Pipeline of 100 lakh crore rupees from the fiscal year 2019-20 to 2024-25.



  • The Task Force will be headed by Economic Affairs Secretary. 

Mandate of task force:

  • To identify technically feasible and economically viable infrastructure projects that can be initiated in the current fiscal.
  • To work on listing the projects that can be included in the pipeline for each of the remaining 5 years.
  • To estimate annual infrastructure investment costs, guide the Ministries in identifying appropriate sources of financing and suggest measures to monitor the projects so that cost and time overrun is minimized.


  • The Task Force will submit its Report on Pipeline by 31st of October for the fiscal year 2019-20 and on the indicative pipeline for fiscal years 2021- 25 by 31st of  December this year.


  • The National Infrastructure Pipeline would include Greenfield and brownfield projects costing above 100 crore rupees. It also enables marketing of the pipeline of projects requiring private investment through the India Investment Grid and National Investment & Infrastructure Fund.
  • Earlier, PM Modi in his Independence Day speech highlighted that 100 lakh crore rupees would be invested in infrastructure over the next five years. Infrastructure projects will include social and economic infrastructure projects.

Mega Food Park


In News:

  • Union Minister of Food Processing Industries Harsimrat Badal inaugurated the First Mega Food Park of Telangana in Lakkampally at Village Lakkampally, Nandipet Mandal of Nizamabad District.



  • To give a major boost to the food processing sector by adding value and reducing food wastage at each stage of the supply chain with particular focus on perishables.

Parent ministry of scheme:

  • Ministry of Food Processing Industries.

Implementing agencies:

  • The Mega Food Park project is implemented by a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) which is a Body Corporate registered under the Companies Act.
  • However, State Government, State Government entities and Cooperatives are not required to form a separate SPV for implementation of Mega Food Park project.


  • Under the Scheme, Government of India provides financial assistance upto Rs. 50 Crore per Mega Food Park project.

Cluster approach:

  • The Mega Food Park Scheme is based on “Cluster” approach and envisages creation of state of art support infrastructure in a well-defined agri / horticultural zone for setting up of modern food processing units along with well-established supply chain.

Project Components:

  • Mega food park typically consists of supply chain infrastructure including
  • collection centres,
  • primary processing centres (PPC),
  • central processing centres (CPC),
  • cold chain and
  • Around 30-35 fully developed plots for entrepreneurs to set up food processing units.

Collection Centres and Primary Processing Centres (PPC):

  • These components have facility for cleaning, grading, sorting and packing facilities, dry warehouses, specialized cold stores etc.

Central Processing Centres (CPC):

  • Includes common facilities like Testing Laboratory, Cleaning, Grading, Sorting and Packing Facilities, Dry Warehouses, specialized storage facilities etc.


Craniopagus Twins


In News:

  • India’s only successfully separated craniopagus twins from Odisha — Jagga and Balia — were discharged from the All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS), two years after they were admitted, operated and started on rehabilitation at the hospital.


  • The toddlers were born with fused brain and skull, a condition known as craniopagus.
  • Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said that this is the rarest of the rare surgery and it can be called ‘AIIMS Delhi Jagga and Balia craniopagus surgery’.
  • He said this was the first successful craniopagus conjoined twin separation surgery from India wherein both the children had survived. Worldwide only 10-15 children have survived after surgical separation of this condition in the last 50 years. 

Conjoined twins:


  • Conjoined twins are two babies who are born physically connected to each other. They may also share one or more internal organs.


  • Conjoined twins may be joined at any of these sites –
  • Craniopagus twins are joined at the back, top or side of the head, but not the face. Craniopagus twins share a portion of the skull. But their brains are usually separate, though they may share some brain tissue.
  • Thoracopagus twins are joined face to face at the chest.
  • Omphalopagus twins are joined near the bellybutton (Abdomen)
  • Pygopagus twins are joined back to back at the base of the spine and the buttocks.
  • Rachipagus twins are joined back to back along the length of the spine.
  • Ischiopagus twins are joined at the pelvis, either face to face or end to end.


  • Conjoined twins develop when an early embryo only partially separates to form two individuals. Although two fetuses will develop from this embryo, they will remain physically connected — most often at the chest, abdomen or pelvis.


  • Though many conjoined twins are not alive when born (stillborn) or die shortly after birth, advances in surgery and technology have improved survival rates. Some surviving conjoined twins can be surgically separated.


Disaster Response Teams (DRTs)

In News:

  • NYKS will prepare Disaster Response Teams (DRTs) for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in collaboration with NDRF to be launched on pilot basis in 32 Districts of 28 States/UTs.


  • Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) has taken up an initiative on preparing Disaster Response Teams (DRTs) of NYKS Youth Volunteers for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in collaboration with National Disaster Response Force (NDRF).
  • It is proposed to establish institutional mechanism for engagement of NYKS by creating Block Level Disaster Response Teams (DRTs) of volunteers as first responders in NDRF selected hazard prone districts.
  • Initially, institutional mechanism is going to be on a pilot basis in 32 multi-hazard Districts of 28 States/UTs. It is expected to train more than 50,000 youth associated with NYKS till 2024.




In News:

  • In Meghalaya, a four-day international symposium on buckwheat with the theme "diversifying food systems for health and nutritional security" was organised by North Eastern Hills University, Shillong from 3rd to 6th September 2019.


  • Buckwheat suppresses weeds and attracts beneficial insects and pollinators with its abundant blossoms. It extracts soil phosphorus from soil better than most grain-type cover crops.
  • Buckwheat is a relatively low input crop that has relatively high yields even in marginal soil. Since it adds nutrients to the soil, it makes a good cover crop or rotational crop.
  • Buckwheat thrives in cool, moist conditions but it is not frosted tolerant.
  • The flour of buckwheat can be used either as food or as medicine. As a medicine, buckwheat is used to improve blood flow by strengthening veins and small blood vessels; to treat varicose veins and poor circulation in the legs, and to prevent hardening of the arteries.


Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2019

In News

  • The Central Government has enforcement various Sections of the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2019 by notifying it in Gazette.

Salient features of amendment act:

  • It amends the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996. The Act contains provisions to deal with domestic and international arbitration, and defines the law for conducting conciliation proceedings.

Arbitration Council of India:

  • It establishes an independent body called the Arbitration Council of India (ACI) for the promotion of arbitration, mediation, conciliation and other alternative dispute redressal mechanisms.

Composition of the ACI:

  • The ACI will consist of a Chairperson who is either: (i) a Judge of the Supreme Court; or (ii) a Judge of a High Court; or (iii) Chief Justice of a High Court; or (iv) an eminent person with expert knowledge in conduct of arbitration.

Relaxation of time limits:

  • Under the original Act, arbitral tribunals are required to make their award within a period of 12 months for all arbitration proceedings. The amendment act removes this time restriction for international commercial arbitrations.

Completion of written submissions:

  • The written claim and the defence to the claim in an arbitration proceeding, should be completed within six months of the appointment of the arbitrators.

Confidentiality of proceedings:

  • All details of arbitration proceedings will be kept confidential except for the details of the arbitral award in certain circumstances.
  • Applicability of Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 2015: It clarifies that the 2015 Act shall only apply to arbitral proceedings which started on or after October 23, 2015.
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