Current Affairs December 15, 2018

In this post, GKToday presents Current Affairs of December 15, 2018 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. In a landmark ruling, the Delhi High Court has ordered a ban on the sale of medicines online by e-pharmacists across India and has directed the Delhi government and the Centre to put the order into effect immediately. The order was passed by a division bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice V Kameswar Rao on a petition filed by Dr. Zaheer Ahmed, who sought a ban on “illegal” sale of drugs and medicines online. The PIL expressed concern over the unregulated sales of medicines on the internet. The PIL further stated that the government has failed in its responsibility to protect public health and fulfill its obligation under Article 21 of the constitution by allowing unchecked online sales. It also highlighted that the online sale of medicines is not permitted under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Pharmacy Act, 1948. In 2015, the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) clearly instructed state authorities to curb sales of medicines online in order to protect public health, but the practice continued. In some cases, medicines were sold without prescriptions.

*******

2. India has recently signed an ascension pact to the 30-member Trans Regional Maritime Network (T-RMN) at Italian Naval Headquarters in Rome, Italy. The pact will give India the access to information on ships which pass through the Indian Ocean region that will greatly help the security forces in keeping a tab on any suspicious activity. The multilat (sic) construct comprises 30 countries & is steered by Italy. The IOR is India’s backyard and first respondent to any crisis situation. India already has bilateral White Shipping Agreements with 36 countries.

*******

3. As per latest Swedish think tank Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPTI) annual report, Russia has emerged as the world’s second-largest arms producer after the United States. Russia surpassed Britain, which had held that spot since 2002 and remains Western Europe’s No. 1 arms maker. According to the report on the world’s 100 biggest armaments groups, the combined arms sales of Russian companies amounted to $37.7 billion in 2017, or 9.5% of a total $398.2 billion, recording 8.5% year-on-year growth. The report includes both domestic and foreign sales around the globe, but doesn’t include Chinese companies because of unreliable statistics.

*******

4. The Uttar Pradesh-based start up ‘Help Us Green’ has been honoured by UN Climate Action Award at a special ceremony at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP 24) in Katowice, Poland for recycling temple waste to spread fragrance. As per UN document, Help Us Green has come up with the world’s first profitable solution to the monumental temple waste problem: flowercycling. It gives marginalised women the chance to earn livelihoods and be respected in their communities through collecting temple ceremonial flowers tossed into the River Ganges and turning them into sustainable incense. The startup collects 8.4 tonnes of floral waste from temples in Uttar Pradesh on a daily basis. These sacred flowers are handcrafted into charcoal-free incense, organic vermicompost and biodegradable packaging material through its ‘flowercycling’ technology. Women collect floral-waste daily from temples. The waste is up-cycled to produce organic fertilisers, natural incense, and biodegradable packaging material.

*******

5. On December 12, the Indian Navy inducted its first non-tethered Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle (DSRV) System at the Naval Dockyard in Mumbai. The DSRV is used to rescue crew members from submarines stranded under water in the high seas. The DSRV can be operated at a depth of 650m & can hold around 15 people. With this, the Indian Navy joins a select league of navies with the sovereign capability in fly away configuration to search, locate and rescue crew from a disabled submarine. The Indian Navy currently operates submarines of the Sindhughosh, Shishumar, Kalvari Classes as well as nuclear powered submarines. The operating medium and the nature of operations undertaken by submarines expose them to high degree of inherent risk. In such an eventuality, traditional methods of search and rescue at sea are ineffective for a disabled submarine. Hence, this new method will overcome the above said risk.

*******

6. On December 12, Japan picked the Chinese character “disaster” to define the year 2018, a year that saw deadly floods, strong earthquakes and heavy storms. The selection came after Japan was buffeted this year by torrential rains in the country’s west and an large earthquake in Hokkaido, heightening public awareness of the importance of disaster prevention measures. Japan was also rocked by man-made calamities such as stolen cryptocurrencies and the uncovering of harassment by coaches in the athletic world. The competition is rum by every year by the Kyoto-based Kanji Aptitude Testing Foundation since 1995. The Chinese characters (or Kanji) are used widely in Japanese as well as other alphabets. Earlier, “North” won in 2017 after North Korea’s missile launches, and “gold” in 2016 after the Rio Olympics.

*******

7. On 10th December 2018, the Kaiga Atomic Power Station (KAPS) has created a world record for the longest uninterrupted operation for 941 days. The Unit-1 of Kaiga Generating Station (KGS) at Kaiga, located the river Kali in Uttar Kannada district of Karnataka, has been generating electricity continuously since May 13, 2016. It is an indigenously-built PHWR run by domestic fuel (uranium). It began commercial operations on November 16, 2000, and has produced 500 cr. units of power so far. It evidences the excellence in design, construction, safety, quality and operation & maintenance practices of Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL). Earlier, the record of 940 days was held by Unit 2 of Heysham of the United Kingdom (UK).

*******

8. On December 12, the European Parliament has approved the world’s largest free trade deal between Japan and the European Union (EU). The EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement will go into effect in February 2019. It will remove duties on almost all agricultural and industrial products as well as open up the service sector and procurement. It also moves to eliminate non-tariff barriers to trade. It includes standards of labor, safety, environment, consumer protection and, for the first time, a specific commitment to the Paris climate agreement. The EU-Japan agreement has been celebrated as a victory for Europe as a free trade champion in the face of U.S. President Donald Trump’s protectionism and the U.K.’s decision to leave the EU. This agreement is projected to increase exports between the two economies by 34% for the EU and 29% for Japan, liberalizing up to 99% of bilateral trade.

*******

9. Brijendra Pal Singh, who is the director-producer of the popular crime investigation series C.I.D., has been appointed as the new president of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) Society and Chairman of Governing Council. He succeeded Anupam Kher, who had stepped down as the chairman in October 2018 citing “international commitments”. As per provisions of FTII rules, Singh’s tenure will be for the remaining period of block of three years starting from March 4 2017. Prior to being nominated as the new FTII chief, Singh was serving in the capacity of vice chairman of the FTII Governing Council.

*******

10. The International Universal Health Coverage Day (UHCD) is observed every year on December 12 to mobilize diverse stakeholders to call for stronger, more equitable health systems to achieve universal health coverage, leaving no one behind. It is promoted by the World Health Organization (WHO). The day is also the anniversary of the first unanimous United Nations resolution calling for all nations to provide for their citizens affordable, quality health care. he theme for the 2018 UHC Day is- “Unite for Universal Health Coverage: Now is the Time for Collective Action”.

*******

Comments