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ICAR-NRCE Develops “Anocovax” India’s 1st COVID-19 Vaccine for Animals
Narendra Singh Tomar, Union Minister, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare(MoAFW) launched “Anocovax”, India’s first indigenously developed COVID-19 vaccine for animals. The vaccine developed by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR)- National Research Centre on Equines(NRCE) (Hisar, Haryana), is safe for dogs, lions, leopards, mice and rabbits.
- Anocovax contains inactivated SARS-CoV-2 Delta (COVID-19) antigen with Alhydrogel as an adjuvant.
- This neutralises both Delta and Omicron variants of the SARS-CoV-2.
Union Minister also launched ‘CAN-CoV-2 ELISA kit’, a sensitive and specific nucleocapsid protein-based indirect (Enzyme-Linked Immunoassay) ELISA kit, for antibody detection against SARS-CoV-2 in canines.
Note – Surra ELISA kit, a suitable diagnostic assay for ‘Trypanosoma evansi‘ infection in multiple animal species.
TDB under DST to Launch RS 1000 Crore Startup Funder under PPP Model
The Technology Development Board (TDB), a statutory body under the Department of Science and Technology(DST), Ministry of Science and Technology is set to launch a Rs 1000 crore fund under a Public-Private Partnership(PPP) model.
i.Objective of the fund is to invest in startups across several sectors. The fund will also invest in early-stage startups.
ii.The fund will be launched in 2 phases:
- In the 1st phase, a corpus of Rs 400 crore will be set up and Rs 200 crores of this will be contributed by a private limited company (yet to be named). In the 2nd phase, TDB will partner with several companies to raise money for the fund and invest an equal sum of money together with the companies.
Visit Of Vice President of India Venkaiah Naidu to Gabon, Senegal and QatarVice President (VP) of India M Venkaiah Naidu paid a visit to Gabon, Senegal and Qatar from 30th May-07th June 2022. He was accompanied by a high-level delegation including Minister of State (MoS) for Health and Family Welfare Dr. Bharati Pravin Pawar and three Members of Parliament (MPs), Sushil Kumar Modi (Rajya Sabha), Vijay Pal Singh Tomar (Rajya Sabha) and P. Ravindhranath (Lok Sabha).
- This was India’s first visit to all three countries at the level of Vice President.
- In addition, this was India’s first-ever high-level visit to Gabon and Senegal.
The visits to Gabon and Senegal are intended to give India’s engagement with Africa and reaffirm India’s commitment to the continent.
The visit to Qatar marks the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations.
PM – Rose Christiane Ossouka Raponda
Capital – Libreville
>> Read Full News
EAM of India S. Jaishankar visits Slovakia & the Czech Republic
Dr Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister(EAM) of India visited Slovakia on 2nd-3rd June 2022 and the Czech Republic on 4th-5th June 2022 and held various high-level exchanges and discussions on the cooperation across sectors with the leadership of both the nations.
EAM Visits Slovakia 2nd-3rd June 2022:
EAM Jaishankar met H.E. Mr Ivan Korčok, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of Slovakia.This is the first-ever visit at the EAM level since the creation of Slovakia in 1993.
Highlights of Visit:
i.On 3rd June 2022, EAM participated in the 17th edition of the Bratislava Forum “GLOBSEC 2022 Bratislava Forum” which took place from 2nd to 4th June 2022 in Bratislava, Slovakia.
ii.He addressed the forum on the topic of “Taking Friendship to the Next Level: Allies in the Indo-Pacific Region”.
iii.EAM also invited Foreign Minister Ivan Korčok to join the International Solar Alliance.
iv.They also exchanged views on regional as well as multilateral issues including Ukraine, European Union(EU) and the Indo-Pacific.
v.Both leaders discussed ways to expand our relations across sectors especially in the areas of investment, culture, tourism and renewable energy.
i.EAM also met H.E. Mr Alexander Schallenberg, Minister of European and International Affairs of Austria on the sidelines of the GLOBSEC 2022 Forum.
ii.He also called on H.E. Mr Milo Đukanović, President of Montenegro and discussed on the friendly ties between India and Montenegro.
EAM Visits the Czech Republic 4th-5th June 2022:
i.EAM met H.E. Mr Jan Lipavský, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Government of Czech Republic.
They discussed bilateral relations, including political, economic, defence & security, Science & Technology (S&T), cultural, and people-to-people ties.
iii.Both sides agreed to work towards an early conclusion of the India-European Union(EU) Free Trade Agreement(FTA).
iv.Both sides discussed about the steady progress in bilateral cooperation, including in trade and defence, and exchanged views on the Indo-Pacific and the repercussions of the Ukraine conflict.
Note: The bilateral trade between India and the Czech Republic has crossed over USD 2 billion.
- He also interacted with Czech Members of the European Parliament and discussed the strong relationship between India and the EU & Czech Republic.
- The Czech Republic will be taking over the European Union presidency from July 1, 2022.
- EAM paid floral tributes at the bust of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore in Prague at a memorial in Thakurova, a street named after the first Indian Nobel laureate.
UNGA adopts India Sponsored Multilingualism Resolution; Mentions Hindi for the 1st Time
On 10th June 2022, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a resolution on multilingualism, co-sponsored by India, that mentioned the Hindi language for the first time. The resolution also mentions Bangla and Urdu for the first time.
- The resolution encourages the United Nations(UN) to continue to spread awareness about the importance of communications and messages in official as well as non-official languages such as Portuguese,Kiswahili,Hindi, Persian, Bangla, and Urdu, in addition to official languages, in order to promote multilingualism. .
- Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish are the six official languages of the United Nations; English and French being the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat.
- India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations is T. S. Tirumurti.
Hindi @ UN:
i.India has been partnering with the UN Department of Global Communications (DGC) since 2018, by providing an extra-budgetary contribution to mainstream and consolidate news and multimedia content in the Hindi language.
ii.In 2018, as a part of these efforts Hindi @ UN was launched.
- To increase the public outreach of the UN in the Hindi language
- To spread awareness about the global issues among the Hindi-speaking populations across the globe.
Note – United Nations Secretary-General appointed Mr. Movses Abelian of Armenia (as well as a national of Georgia), Under-Secretary-General for General Assembly and Conference Management, as Coordinator for Multilingualism.
US Treasury Report: India Among 12 Economies On Currency ‘Monitoring List’According to the semiannual Report of the United States(US) Department of the Treasury – “Macroeconomic and Foreign Exchange Policies of Major Trading Partners of the United States” India is one of the 12 major economies that merit close attention to their currency practices and macroeconomic policies.
- The Monitoring list comprises China, Japan, South Korea, Germany, Italy, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam and Mexico.
- All these countries, except Taiwan and Vietnam, were on the monitoring list in the report of December 2021.
i.With USD 569.9 billion in Foreign Exchange(FX) Reserves, India has the 4th largest foreign exchange after China (USD 3.2 trillion), Japan (USD 1.2 trillion) and Switzerland (USD 1 trillion).
ii.The recent purchase of foreign exchange by the Reserve Bank of India(RBI) has resulted in an increased level of reserve.
iii.According to the December 2021 report, FX reserves totalled USD 570 billion, which is equivalent to 18% of Gross domestic product (GDP) and 209% of short-term external debt at the remaining maturity.
iv.The report mentions China, Japan, Korea, Germany, Italy, Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, and India as the countries that need monitoring of their currency practices.
v.The US Treasury also determined that Vietnam and Switzerland are currency manipulators.
i.Since India met 2 of the 3 criteria in the December 2021 and April 2021 report, the US treasury has decided to keep India on its Monitoring List.
- In the June 2022 report, India met only the significant bilateral trade surplus threshold.
- The US Treasury stated that India will remain on the Monitoring List until it meets fewer than 2 criteria for two consecutive Reports.
ii.Similar to several Asian emerging market peer currencies, the Indian currency, Rupee weakened against the United States Dollar(USD) over the course of 2021, depreciating by 1.9%.
- The volatility of the rupee was pronounced during the 1st half of 2021, subsequently, during the 2nd half of 2021, the rupee depreciated steadily against USD.
- Compared to India’s regional trading partners, the rupee appreciated 0.8% and 2.2% over 2021.
Note: According to the 2021 External Sector Report of the International Monetary Fund(IMF), the FX reserves of India were at 197% of the IMF’s reserve adequacy metric as of end-2020.
BANKING & FINANCE
WhatsApp Launches SMBSaathi Utsav; WhatsApp India, GoI Join Hands to Leverage Chatbot for Non-Covid Use-Cases
WhatsApp India has launched the ‘SMBSaathi Utsav’ initiative to help small businesses use digital media like the WhatsApp Business App to handle their business.
- The SMBSaathi Utsav is the second phase of WhatsApp’s SMBSaathi campaign, which was launched in early 2022.
It was launched in partnership with social media platform Josh Talks, with the goal of educating and assisting small businesses in realising their full potential using WhatsApp.
ii.Following the widespread use of the WhatsApp chatbot during the last two years of the COVID-19 pandemic (2020–2022), WhatsApp India and the Government of India (GoI) have announced plans to expand the bot’s features to include dedicated medical opinion for online cancer consultation and patient electronic history capturing.
- X-Ray Setu, an automated solution that aids in the interpretation of chest X-rays from low-resolution images shared via WhatsApp, is also in development.
India Extends Sri Lanka USD 55 Million Credit Line for Fertiliser Imports
On 10th June 2022 A Line of Credit (LoC) agreement has been signed between the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) and the Export-Import (EXIM) Bank of India at Colombo, Sri Lanka to extend a Line of Credit (LOC) of USD 55 million to Sri Lanka for the procurement of Urea Fertiliser.
- The LoC agreement was signed in the presence of the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka Ranil Wickremesinghe, the Minister of Agriculture Mahinda Amaraweera, and the High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka Gopal Baglay.
- This credit line was extended in response to an urgent request from GOSL against the ongoing economic crisis.
i.The Sri Lankan government and EXIM Bank have agreed to complete all procurement procedures so that urea supplies can reach Sri Lanka in a short span of time.
- This would help to secure urea fertiliser for the ongoing paddy sowing ‘Yala‘ season.
ii.The LOC will be in line with India’s ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy and the support from India ranges close to USD 3.5 billion to help secure Sri Lanka’s food, health, and energy security by supplying essential items like food, medicines, fuel, kerosene etc.
About Sri Lanka:
President – Nandasena Gotabaya Rajapaksa
Capital – Colombo (Commercial Capital), Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte (Administrative Capital)
Currency – Sri Lankan Rupee
Bharat BillPay Onboards CRED as Key Agent Institution
Bharat BillPay(Bharat Bill Payment System – BBPS), the wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has onboarded CRED(Dreamplug Technologies Pvt Ltd) as a key agent institution (AI) to provide bill payment solutions to CRED users.
AIs entities offer or wish to offer bill payment, collection and aggregation services to their customers through physical or digital channels.
- As an AI, CRED will create member touchpoints, provide member assistance (registration, Quickpay, complaint resolution), instant confirmation, awareness (payment and charges), BBPS brand visibility.
- This will also enable the view updated transaction history set transaction alerts and reminders and raise/track complaints online for Bharat Billpay transactions using CRED App.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
UNCTAD: India Ranked 7th at the Global Economies for FDI in 2021According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) World Investment Report 2022 entitled “International tax reforms and sustainable investment”, India ranked 7th in the top 10 global economies for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in 2021 despite a decline in FDI investment.
- FDI inflows have declined by USD 19 billion to USD 45 billion in 2021.
- However India managed to reach the top 10 economies for FDI inflows in 2021, ranking 7th after the US, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Canada and Brazil.
- Adding South Africa, Russia and Mexico to the list to round up the top 10 economies for FDI inflows in 2021.
Measures taken to increase India’s FDI:
India’s new measures facilitated the investment by nations that accounted to 40 percent of all measures more favourable to investment.
- India launched the National Single-Window System, which will become a one- stop shop for approvals and clearances needed by investors, entrepreneurs and businesses.
About United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD):
Secretary General – Rebeca Grynspan
Established – 1964
Headquarters – Geneva, Switzerland
Member states – 195 Countries
>> Read Full News
Spices Board signed ToU with Flipkart to Enable Market Access to Farmers
Spices Board, the flagship organization of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry(MoCI), signed a Terms of Understanding(ToU) with Flipkart to enhance market access and support to promote farmers and grassroots organisations working in the spices sector. The ToU was signed at the Spices Board headquarters in Kochi, Kerala.
- Spice board has partnered with Flipkart under its initiative Flavourit Spices Trading Limited (FSTL).
- The ToU was signed under the Flipkart Samarth programme, which aims to empower Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises(MSMEs) artisans, entrepreneurs, and rural seller and farmer communities that sells products associated with rich cultural heritage through Flipkart.
- Flipkart’s partnership with the Spices Board will enable pan-India market access for farmers and grassroots organisations working in the spices sector.
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATIONS
Rabab Fatima Appointed as UNs Under Secretary General ; Amandeep Singh Gill As UNs Envoy On Technology
United Nations (UN) Secretary General Antonio Guterres appointed Ambassador Rabab Fatima, Permanent Representative of Bangladesh as the Under Secretary General or Assistant Secretary General of the UN and also appointed as High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries, and Small Island Developing States (UN-OHRLLS).
- She succeeds Courtenay Rattray of Jamaica who was appointed as the Chef de Cabinet.
- She is the current Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the United Nations in New York.
- Ambassador Rabab Fatima is the 1st woman diplomat from Bangladesh to be appointed to this post and also the highest ranking official of Bangladesh under the UN system.
UN Chief Appoints Indian Diplomat Amandeep Singh Gill As Envoy On Technology
Senior Indian diplomat Amandeep Singh Gill has been appointed by United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres as his Envoy on Technology.
- The UN describes him as a ‘thought leader on digital technology’ who has a solid understanding of how to leverage the digital transformation responsibly and inclusively for progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
- Previously, Amandeep Singh Gill was India’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva from 2016-to 2018.
About Amandeep Singh Gill:
i.He joined India’s diplomatic service in 1992 and served in various capacities in disarmament and strategic technologies and international security affairs, with postings in Tehran and Colombo. He was also a visiting scholar at Stanford University.
- He was the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the International Digital Health and Artificial Intelligence Research Collaborative (I-DAIR) project, based at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva.
- He was also the Executive Director and Co-Lead of the United Nations Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation (2018-2019).
ii.In addition, he helped secure high-impact international consensus recommendations on regulating Artificial Intelligence (Al) in lethal autonomous weapon systems in 2017 and 2018, the draft Al ethics recommendation of UNESCO in 2020, and a new international platform on digital health and Al.
Note – United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres appointed Navid Hanif of Pakistan as Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs.
About United Nations:
Secretary-General – Antonio Guterres
Established – 1945
Member states – 193
Headquarters – New York, United States of America (USA)
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
DAVINCI Mission: NASA’s Venus Mission is Set to Launch in 2029
NASA’s Venus Mission, Deep Atmosphere Venus Investigation of Noble gases, Chemistry, and Imaging (DAVINCI) mission named after visionary Renaissance artist and scientist Leonardo da Vinci(Italy) is tentatively scheduled to launch in June 2029 and enter the atmosphere of Venus in June 2031.
This will be the 1st mission to Venus that will incorporate science-driven fly-bys and an instrumented descent sphere into a unified architecture.
- DAVINCI, with Venus Oxygen Fugacity (VfOx), a miniature sensor, will measure the amount of oxygen present near the surface of Venus.
- VfOx will be designed, fabricated, tested, operated, and analysed by undergraduate and graduate students as the mission’s Student Collaboration Experiment.
- The detail was published in the The Planetary Science Journal.
i.Venus is often referred to as the Earth’s Twin because of its similarity in size and density.
ii.NASA’s Venus mission will assist the scientists to have a better understanding of the Earth.
iii.The temperature of Venus stands at around (471 degrees Celsius) with a carbon-rich atmosphere which traps heat the same way the greenhouse gases do on Earth.
To measure the landscape of Venus at scales readings ranging from 328 feet (100 metres) down to less than 1 metre.
About the mission:
i.The mission will study the origin, evolution, and present state of Venus in unprecedented detail from near the top of the clouds to the planet’s surface.
ii.The DAVINCI spacecraft will carry an atmospheric descent probe which will serve as a telecommunications hub by relaying information from the probe to Earth.
iii.The spacecraft will also have 2 onboard instruments to study Venusian clouds and map its highland areas as it flies by the planet.
iv.DAVINCI will also study the cloud tops in ultraviolet light, during its 2 gravity assist flybys.
v.The flybys will also examine heat emanating from the Venus surface on the planet’s night side.
vi.The overall mission yield will be at least 60 Gbits (compressed) new data about the atmosphere and near surface, as well as the first unique characterization of the deep atmosphere environment and chemistry, including trace gases, key stable isotopes, oxygen fugacity, constraints on local rock compositions, and topography of a tessera.
i.After exploring the top atmosphere of Venus and the composition of “Alpha Regio” a mountainous region, DAVINCI will drop its probe to the Venus surface in 2031.
ii.The DAVINCI probe, a spherical probe of 1 meter (3 feet) wide, is made of Titanium, one of the world’s strongest metals.
iii.The probe and its 5 scientific instruments will be designed and built to withstand the extreme environment of Venus.
iv.During its hour-long descent, the probe will take thousands of measurements and snap up-close images of the surface as soon as it emerges below the clouds.
NCPCR Launches “CiSS application” under Baal Swaraj Portal to Help Rehabilitation of Children in Street Situations
The National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) launched the “CiSS application” under the Baal Swaraj portal to help in the rehabilitation process of Children in Street Situations. (CiSS). The portal developed by NCPCR is a first-of-its-kind initiative in India to help children in street situations.It follows six stages framework for the rehabilitation of children.
The initiative is taken under the direction of the Supreme Court of India.
- This program incorporates Article 51 (A) of the Constitution of India, as it provides a platform to the public and organizations that support the welfare of the children to report any child in need of assistance.
- According to Standard Operating Procedure for Care and Protection of Children in Street Situations 2.0, children living on the streets alone, living on the streets during the day, or living on the streets with their families are categorised as CiSS.
ISSF World Cup, Baku: India Finishes with Five Medals
The International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup 2022 was held in Baku, Azerbaijan from 28th May 2022 to 7th June 2022.
i.India won a total of five medals, with 2 gold, 3 silver, and holds 5th position in overall championship.
- The Republic of Korea topped the medal tally with 5 Gold and 3 Bronze, followed by the United States of America(USA) with 4 Gold, 3 Silver and 1 Bronze and France with 3 Gold, 2 Silver and 1 Bronze.
ii.Swapnil Kusale and Ashi Chouksey won gold 50m rifle 3 positions (3P) mixed team shooting event defeating Ukraine’s Serhiy Kulish and Daria Tykhova.
- This was Swapnil’s 1st gold and third medal overall at the Baku World Cup.
- Swapnil Kusale had earlier won silvers in both the men’s 3P individual and team competitions.
Key Note – According to the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) press release, all three squads – rifle, pistol and shotgun will participate in the 4th and final Changwon ISSF World Cup in July 2022 before the ISSF World Championships take place in September-October 2022.
Indian medal winners:
|Swapnil Kusale and Ashi Chouksey||50m rifle 3 positions (3P) mixed team shooting||Gold|
|Elavenil Valarivan, Ramita and Shreya Agrawal||Women’s team’s 10m air rifle gold||Gold|
|Swapnil Kusale||Individual men’s 50m rifle 3 positions||Silver|
|Anjum Moudgil||Individual women’s 50m rifle 3 positions||Silver|
|Swapnil Kusale, Deepak Kumar and Goldie Gurjar||Men’s rifle 3 positions team||Silver|
About The International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF):
President – Vladimir Lisin
Headquarters – Munich, Germany
Norway Chess 2022: Carlsen, Indian GM R Praggnanandhaa, Viswanathan Anand are Winners
The 10th edition of the Norway Chess 2022 was held at Finansparken in Stavanger, Norway from 30th May 2022 to 10th June 2022.
- Magnus Carlsen won the Armageddon against Bulgarian GrandMaster Veselin Topalov to keep the title for the fourth successive year and for the fifth time in 10 editions.
Viswanathan Anand at the Tournament:
i.Former world champion and first grandmaster from India, Viswanathan Anand won the final round against Norwegian chess player Aryan Tari to place 3rd in the Norway Chess tournament.But he won current world champion Magnus Carlsen in the fifth round of the tournament.
- He finished with 14.5 points to sign off at the third place behind Carlsen (16.5 points) and Azerbaijan’s Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (15.5).
R Praggnanandhaa at the Group A Tournament
- Indian Grand Master, top-seeded player R Praggnanandhaa wins Norway Chess Group ‘A‘ event with 7.5 points from nine rounds.
- The second place and third place went to IM Marsel Efroimski of Israel and IM Jung Min Seo of Sweden.
|1||Magnus Carlsen (Norway)||16.5|
|2||Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Azerbaijan)||15.5|
|3||Viswanathan Anand (India)||14.5|
|4||Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France)||14|
|5||Wesley So (USA)||12.5|
About Norway chess:
The Norway chess tournament was started in 2012 with the idea to create the world’s strongest chess tournament.
Founder & Chairman – Kjell Madland
Headquarters – Norway
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Current Affairs Today (AffairsCloud Today)
|S.no||Current Affairs 12 & 13 June 2022|
|1||ICAR-NRCE Develops “Ancovax” India’s 1st COVID-19 Vaccine for Animals|
|2||TDB under DST to Launch RS 1000 Crore Startup Funder under PPP Model|
|3||Visit Of Vice President of India Venkaiah Naidu to Gabon, Senegal and Qatar|
|4||EAM of India S. Jaishankar visits Slovakia & the Czech Republic|
|5||UNGA adopts India Sponsored Multilingualism Resolution; Mentions Hindi for the 1st Time|
|6||US Treasury Report: India Among 12 Economies On Currency ‘Monitoring List’|
|7||WhatsApp Launches SMBSaathi Utsav To Help Small Biz Adopt Digital Mediums; WhatsApp India, GoI Join Hands to Leverage Chatbot for Non-Covid Use-Cases|
|8||India Extends Sri Lanka USD 55 Million Credit Line for Fertiliser Imports|
|9||Bharat BillPay Onboards CRED as Key Agent Institution|
|10||UN: India Ranks among Top 10 Global Economies for FDI in 2021|
|11||Spices Board signed ToU with Flipkart to Enable Market Access to Farmers|
|12||Appointments: Rabab Fatima Appointed as UNs Under Secretary General; Amandeep Singh Gill As UNs Envoy On Technology|
|13||DAVINCI Mission: NASA’s Venus Mission is Set to Launch in 2029|
|14||NCPCR Launches “CiSS application” under Baal Swaraj Portal to Help Rehabilitation of Children in Street Situations|
|15||ISSF World Cup, Baku: India Finishes with Five Medals|
|16||Norway Chess 2022: Carlsen, Indian GM R Praggnanandhaa, Viswanathan Anand are Winners|