- World Water Week 2020 The World Water Week is an annual global event organized by Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) since 1991 to address the planet’s water issues and related concerns of international development. The World Water Week 2020 has been organized from 24th to 28th August 2020 in virtual format due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The theme of World Water Week 2020 at Home is “Water and Climate Change: Accelerating Action”.
- First Indian to win Gold medal in Mental Calculation World ChampionshipNeelakantha Bhanu Prakash of Hyderabad has become the first Indian to win gold medal at the Mental Calculation World Championship 2020 at Mind Sports Olympiads held in London recently. The 20-year Indian is a student of Mathematics at Delhi’s St. Stephen College and holds the record for being the ‘fastest human calculator’ in the World. This is the first time that India has won a gold medal at Mind Sports Olympiads, the most prestigious international competition for games of mental skill and mind sports held annually.
- Video of the largest ever Hydrogen bomb blast released by Russia Russia released a 40-minute video of detonation of the world’s most powerful hydrogen bomb. The bomb was called the Tsar Bomb. It is believed to be 3333 times more destructive than that of the Hiroshima Nagasaki Atom Bombs Little Boy and Fat Man. The Hydrogen Bomb was first tested over Novaya Zemlya, an archipelago in the Arctic Ocean. The video released was titled “Top Secret: Test of a clean hydrogen bomb with a yield of 50 mega tonnes”. The video Shows how the bomb was build and carried to testing centre. The Tsar was a product of the long running nuclear race between USSR and USA. The bomb was 26 feet long and weighed more than 27 tonnes.
- Joint Commission Meeting held between India-Vietnam The Joint Commission meeting between India and Vietnam was recently held virtually. It was chaired by the External Affairs Minister of India Dr. S Jai Shankar and his counterpart Mr. Pham Minh, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Vietnam. Closer Cooperation in the areas of space, marine, nuclear energy and technologies were discussed between the two countries. Also, they shared their views on global and regional issues to coordinate closely in International Platforms such as United Nations Security Council, ASEAN. It is to be noted that both Indian and Vietnam are the current non-permanent members of the UNSC. They will serve till 2021. India and Vietnam agreed to enhance their bilateral cooperation in the Indo-Pacific Oceans Initiative.
- Draft Health Data Management Policy released by NHAThe National Health Authority (NHA) released the Draft Health Data Management Policy under the National Digital Health Mission on 26th August 2020. The main objective of the policy is to provide adequate guidance and set framework to secure processing of personal and sensitive personal data of individuals. The National Digital Health Mission was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his address at the 74th Independence Day. The policy includes a consent framework in relation to collecting, processing and governing of the patient data. The policy provides separate framework for child and an adult. A person below 18 years of age is treated as child by the policy. It also provides separate framework to process data of mentally ill patients.
- Services of UMANG Application to be delivered by GoI by Common Service Centres The National E-Governance Division and the CSC (Common Service Centres) signed a pact to facilitate the delivery of UMANG Application services through CSCs. By this, the services of the application will reach the citizens easily as the network of Common Service Centres are strong with more than 3.75 lakhs connected together. The agreement will help to benefit people who do not have access to smart phones or those who are not comfortable in accessing application based e-services on their own. The UMANG Application was a huge success. It reached more than 3.12 crores. The Government of India (GoI) through this move is trying to reach the unprivileged, illiterates and the vulnerables.
- Linking of Ladakh with National Grid The Government of India is implementing Rupees 1200 crore project to link the regions of Ladakh and Leh with the National Power Grid. These regions due to their isolated locations remain power deficit regions receiving only 5 hours power supply from diesel generators and very few micro hydel projects. The Srinagar-Leh transmission line is being extended to power Zanskar and Nubra regions. The Rural Electrification Corporation is to implement the project. The 200-km transmission line carrying 220 KV is to run across one of the world’s coldest inhabitations. The line will also run through Khardung La, the World’s highest motorable pass.
- Kerela Government launched first Marine Ambulance The Government of Kerela has launched Marine Ambulance services to provide more efficient rescue because around 30 fishermen lose their lives at sea in a year due to accidents during fishing. The Marine Ambulance specializes in providing first aid and also rescue operations. The ambulance is capable of providing critical care to up to five people simultaneously. The ambulances run on Scania engines and can run at maximum speed of 14 knots. The ambulance has been designed under the standards of Indian Registry of Shipping. The other marine ambulances that are to be deployed are Pratyasha and Karunya.
- To redefine DRDO, GoI sets up Expert Panel The Government of India set up an expert panel to redefine the roles and responsibilities of Defence Research Development Organization on 26th August 2020. The panel is being set up to fulfil the aim of Government of India to reduce Indian military dependence on imports. This is because, currently India is the second largest arms importer in the world after Saudi Arabia. The panel was set up by the DRDO Chief Satheesh Reddy under the Chairmanship of Indian Institute of Delhi Director V Ramgopal Rao. The panel has been asked to submit its report within 45 days.
- 41st Council Meet of GST The Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman chaired the 41st GST Council Meet on 27th August 2020. The council discussed states compensation and revenue losses. As a part of GST reforms, GST Compensation Cess was introduced through GST (Compensation to States) Act, 2017. The cess was levied on inter and intra state supply of Goods such as coal, tobacco, aerated drinks and automobiles for 5 years. The collected cess is to go to the loss incurring states on the basis on a formula as compensation.
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