Current Affairs July 26, 2019

In this post, GKToday presents Current Affairs of July 26, 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. The research team led by Assam forest officer Jatindra Sarma has discovered Dracaena cambodiana – a dragon tree species in the Dongka Sarpo area of West Karbi Anglong. Researchers took 4 years of fieldwork and study to classify the plant as a dragon tree species whose sap turns bright red after coming in contact with air. This is for the first time that a dragon tree species has been reported from India. Dracaena cambodiana is an important medicinal plant as well as an ornamental tree. It is a major source of dragon’s blood, a precious traditional medicine in China. Several antifungal and antibacterial compounds, antioxidants, flavonoids, etc., have been extracted from various parts of the plant. In India, the Dracaena genus belonging to the family Asparagaceae is represented by nine species and two varieties in the Himalayan region, the northeast and Andaman and Nicobar Islands. But Dracaena cambodiana is the only true dragon tree species.

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2. The book titled ‘Fire and Fury Corps — Saga of Valour, Fortitude and Sacrifice’ has been authored by Northern Army Commander Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh. The book is showcasing the history and achievements of the Fire and Fury Corps which guards the Line of Control (LoC) and Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). It documents the courage and bravery of the Fire and Fury Warriors and portrays the rich heritage and ethos of the Indian Army. The book also covers the serenity and mysticism of Ladakh and its people, as a tribute to the symbiotic relationship shared by the Indian Army and the people of Ladakh region.

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3. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has recently announced that Bengaluru-based educational technology and online tutorial firm Byju’s has replaced Chinese mobile manufacturer Oppo as the official Team India sponsor. The deal period will begin from 5 September, 2019 until 31 March, 2022. BYJU’s is a leading education and learning app and has superstar Shah Rukh Khan as its brand ambassador. Byju’s will now be seen on the Indian team jersey from September 2019 when the home series against South Africa begin.

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4. The Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) is an executive and bureaucratic space agency of the Government of Pakistan. It is responsible for the nation’s public and civil space programme and for aeronautics and aerospace research. It is in news because the space agency has recently announced that it will send its first astronaut to space in 2022 using ally China’s satellite launching facilities. Pakistan’s decision came as India on July 22 successfully launched its second lunar mission Chandrayaan 2.

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5. India’s first space war drill ‘IndSpaceEx’ has kick started by Indian armed forces in New Delhi on July 25 and 26. The aim of the exercise is to assess imminent threats to the nation beyond earth. It also plans on drafting a joint space doctrine for future battles. The development comes on the background of China’s growing influence in space defence and counter-space capabilities.

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6. Six companies — Tata Power, ReNew Power, Hindustan Zinc, Aditya Birla Capital Ltd., YES Bank Ltd. and Mahindra & Mahindra — emerged winners in the CSR Journal Excellence Awards. In the 3rd edition of awards, there were six categories — education and skill training, women empowerment and child welfare, agriculture and rural development, sports, health and sanitation and environment. The awards are instituted by The CSR Journal, a digital and print news publication. The theme of the event was ‘India First’.

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7. Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi (92), the North African country’s first democratically elected leader, has passed away on July 25, 2019. He was the world’s oldest sitting president. Essebsi won Tunisia’s first free elections in 2014 following Arab uprisings across the region. As president, Essebsi largely maintained stability in Tunisia. Tunisia has won praise as the only democracy to emerge from the revolutions of the so-called Arab spring.

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8. Uttar Pradesh has become number one in implementation of Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) in the country. As per the statement released by state government, 1.95 crores people have been given insurance cover under the scheme till 31 march 2019. The implementation of this ambitious central government scheme started in state from January 2018 under which people between age group of 18 to 70 get accidental insurance cover of Rs. 2 lakh by paying a nominal premium of Rs 12 annually. Beside this, Uttar Pradesh stands second in the country in the implementation of Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Beema Yojana (PMJJBY). The PMJJBY is a life insurance scheme that provides a life cover of Rs.2 lakh at Rs.330/year. It is available to people in the age group of 18 to 50 years having a bank account who give their consent to join / enable auto-debit.

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9. The Indian scientists at the Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES) have recently discovered 28 new variable stars in the Milky Way galaxy using 3.6 metre Devasthal Optical Telescope (DOT) established in 2016 near Nainital. The ARIES team of researchers was led by Dr. Sneh Lata and Dr. A K Pandey. It is for the first time that variable stars have been identified in Globular cluster NGC 4147 in the constellation of Coma Berenices. Besides the detection of new variable stars, the study also provides important insights into the internal structure of NGC 4147 which is located closer to the Earth than previously thought. A variable star is a star whose luminosity or brightness changes. This change may be caused due to periodical swelling and shrinking of the star or occasional block of light due to an eclipse by some other solar body. NGC 4147 was discovered by British astronomer William Herschel in 1784. A globular cluster is a spherical collection of stars that orbit a galactic core, as a satellite. Globular clusters are very tightly bound by gravity, which gives them their spherical shapes, and relatively high stellar densities towards their centres.

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10. The National Institute of Miners’ Health (NIMH), an autonomous institute under the Ministry of Mines (MoM), has been dissolved and merged with the ICMR-National Institute of Occupational Health (NIOH), Ahmedabad with all assets and liabilities. All the employees of NIMH will be absorbed in NIOH in the similar post/pay scale as the case may be and their pay be protected. The merger / amalgamation of NIMH with NIOH will prove beneficial to both the Institutes in term of enhanced expertise in the field of occupational health besides the efficient management of public money. The ICMR – NIOH works under Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoH&FW).

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