Current Affairs April 08, 2019

In this post, GKToday presents Current Affairs of April 08, 2019 in Short Notes form for preparation of IBPS, Banking, CLAT, SSC, Railway, UPSC, IAS/PCS, UPPSC, BPSC, MPPSC, RPSC, TNPSC, MPSC, KPSC and all other competitive examinations of India.

1. On April 5, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated the National Cardiology Conference 2019 at Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of medical sciences in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. The 3-day conference will be organized by Dept of Cardiology in which leading national and international experts from Europe, USA, Japan, Singapore South Korea, Indonesia and Australia will deliberate on the latest topics of Interventional cardiology and cutting edge technology. The conference being held for the first time in Uttar Pradesh offers an opportunity to showcase newer innovations in Cardiology that can help deliver cost-effective cardiology care to patients.

2. The Nepal-India Franchise Investment Expo and Conclave will be held in Kathmandu from 15th to 16th May, 2019. The event primarily focuses on building the relations between India and Nepal through entrepreneurship development. The conclave is organised by Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FNCCI) in association with Embassy of India and Franchise India. The event is expected to introduce new investment opportunities to Nepalese market. According to Indian Ambassador Manjeev Singh Puri the summit will help in bringing the leading Indian iconic brands to Nepal. Their entry would not only bring investment into Nepal but also technology transfers and business know how. According to organizers 250 businesspersons and investors will attend the conclave and more than 1000 prospective franchisees and investors are expected to visit the expo.

3. Chinese scientists have discovered a possible "death switch" mechanism in plant's immune system that triggers infected cells to self-destruct, thus limiting the spread of the disease and keeping other parts of the plant healthy. This is as per the findings published in the journal 'Science'. The discovery provides clues to cell death control and immunity for plants. The researchers hope further research can lead to a new generation of disease-resistant crops that use significantly less pesticide and are more environmentally friendly. The research was done by scientists from Tsinghua University and the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Institute of Genetics and Development Biology. The 'death switch' is usually harmless to the plant because it only affects diseased cells, which are a tiny portion of the entire plant.

4. On April 5, Telecom giant Samsung Electronics released the Galaxy S10 5G in South Korea. It is the world’s first available smartphone with built-in fifth-generation communications. Earlier, South Korea became the first country to roll out a super-fast 5G mobile network nationwide, which allows users to download entire movies almost instantaneously. Three South Korean carriers – SK Telecom, KT and LG Uplus – -- held launch events across Seoul for the Galaxy S10, whose base version costs 1.39 million won ($1,200). Thus, commercializing 5G gives South Korea the chance to build around the technology, which is crucial for the future development of devices such as autonomous vehicles and the Internet of Things (IoT).

5. Vipin Anand Monday has recently taken charge as the new Managing Director (MD) of the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC). Prior to this, he was in charge of LIC's western zone, comprising of 23 divisions, covering the states of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa and Union Territories of Daman and Diu, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. During his service of more than 35 years, Anand has handled several important assignments in various capacities and departments. He was instrumental in setting up LIC's operations in Singapore and Bangladesh.

6. The National Maritime Day (NMD) of India is celebrated every year on April 5 to spread awareness in supporting intercontinental commerce and the global economy. On this day, in 1919, navigation history was created when SS Loyalty, the first ship of the Scindia Steam Navigation Company, journeyed to the United Kingdom. It was a crucial step for Indian shipping history when sea routes were controlled by the British. The theme of the 56th edition of the NMD 2019 is "Indian Ocean-An Ocean of opportunity". According to the Directorate General of Shipping, India now has 43 shipping companies owning 1,401 ships with a combined 12.69 million gross tonnage' as of December 2018.

7. Scientists at the Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology (CCMB) have discovered a new enzyme ‘Murein Endopeptidase’ which helps in breaking cell walls of bacteria. This discovery offers a potential for a new drug delivery route to arrest the anti-bacterial resistance through existing antibiotic drugs. Hence, it opens up fresh ways to target microbes, leading to a new wave of antibiotic drugs. The man behind this discovery is Pavan Kumar Chodisetti, research student and his mentor Dr Manjula Reddy. Antibiotics are medicines used to prevent and treat bacterial infections. The findings have been published in the latest issue of Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences, USA

8. The Guwahati Railway Station has become the first station in India to obtain the ISO 14001: 2015 certification for implementation of environment management system by carrying out directives issued by the National Green Tribunal (NGT). The station also has amenities such as High-class reserve (VIP) lounge, waiting rooms, AC and non-AC retiring rooms, food courts and sanitation facilities. The certification will be reviewed in 2020 by NF Railway, which mandates stricter environmental norms regarding waste disposal among others to be adhered to Railway Station. ISO (International Organisation for Standardisation) is responsible for establishing standard in different areas of activities. There are many types of ISO certification and ISO-14001 is for environment management system as per international norms and was upgraded last in 2015. Hence the certificate is called ISO 14001:2015.

9. The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has tied up with IIT Delhi to collaborate in the field of standardisation and conformity assessment. Under the MoU, the two have agreed to set-up a Centre of Excellence in the field of Standardisation, Testing and Conformity Assessment with the BIS branding at IIT-Delhi campus. Both have also agreed to appoint a Chair in the field of standardisation and conformity assessment. According to the MoU, IIT Delhi will provide infrastructure support for research and development projects of relevance to standardisation and BIS will provide financial support to IIT Delhi for projects. Initially, the MoU will remain in force for a period of five years and can be extended further.

10. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has said that its Hayabusa2 spacecraft has successfully blasted the surface of an asteroid Ryugu to make a crater on its surface. The move will pave the way for the collection of underground samples for possible clues to the origin of the solar system. For this, the Hayabusa2 dropped a "small carry-on impactor" made of copper onto the asteroid and the spacecraft safely evacuated and remained intact. Now, JAXA is analyzing data to examine if or how the impactor made a crater. The copper explosive is the size of a baseball weighing 2 kg. If successful, it would be the first time for a spacecraft to take such materials. The asteroid, named Ryugu after an undersea palace in a Japanese folktale, is about 300 million kilometers (180 million miles) from Earth. Earlier, Hayabusa2 successfully touched down on a tiny flat surface on the boulder-rich asteroid in February 2019, when the spacecraft also collected some surface dust and small debris.

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