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Current Affairs May 20 2019

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Centre issued Drought Advisory to six states
Recently, centre has issued a “drought advisory” to six states named Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu due to water storage in dams dropped to a “critical level”. Centre has asked these 6 six states to use water judiciously.
Key Highlights
i. Central Water Commission (CWC) always issues drought advisory whenever the water level in reservoirs is 20 percent less than the average of live water storage figures of the past 10 years.
ii. According to figures released by CWC, the total water storage available was 35.99 billion cubic metres, which is 22 percent of the total storage capacity of these reservoirs.

About CWC :
It functions as an attached office of Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Government of India, and monitors total water storage available in 91 major reservoirs across the country.


Tripura Gramin Bank among top RRB performer in the country
Tripura Gramin Bank is among India’s top three Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) out of 45 Regional Rural Bank  in terms of profit, business, and growth. Tripura Gramin Bank has emerged as one of the top performers in the banking sector in the 2018-19 financial year across the country, investing heavily to promote entrepreneurship.

Tripura Gramin Bank has posted a profit for 7 successive years to Rs 125.45 crore in fiscal 2018-19. The Bank also registered the business of Rs. 9,000 crores, with net Non-Performing Asset (NPA) of zero percent and gross NPA of 8.94 percent.

Tripura Gramin BankKey Highlights
i. In Tripura Gramin Bank, the central government has a 50% stake, the United Bank of India has 35% stake and rest 15% is held by the Tripura government.
ii. Tripura Gramin Bank is the only RRB in the north-eastern region out of eight, which has been making profit to 7 successive years.
iii. The Tripura Gramin Bank is the first RRB in India which have been granted a permission by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to start treasury function of the Tripura government and open a currency chest.
About Tripura Gramin Bank
♦ Headquarter: Agartala
♦ Chairman: Mahendra Mohan Goswami


Facebook registers its new secretive cryptocurrency firm ‘Libra Networks LLC’ in Geneva, Switzerland
On May 2, 2019, Facebook Global Holdings registered a new cryptocurrency firm named ‘Libra Networks LLC’ in Geneva, Switzerland. It will provide financial and technology services by developing related hardware and software components. Facebook has been very secretive about its new cryptocurrency project.

'Libra Networks LLCKey Points:
i. Facebook had registered the trademark “Libra” with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
ii. Facebook has hired 2 cryptocurrency compliance experts who formerly worked at the major crypto exchange Coinbase to assist in their work.
iii. Facebook is looking to raise $1 billion to build this new project.
About Facebook:
Headquarters: Menlo Park, California, United States
Founded: February 4, 2004
CEO: Mark Zuckerberg

India allowed refurbished mobile imports certified by Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS)
India has allowed the import of refurbished mobile phones or second mobile phones only if they are certified by the Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS).
Key Points:
i. Earlier, the Government of India didn’t give its assent to refurbished mobile imports with the fear of dumping and negative effect to Make In India initiative.
ii. Mobile operators like Apple had sought the permission with the Government to give nod to the import of second iphones.
About BIS:
♦ Headquarters: Manak Bhawan, New Delhi
♦ Founder: Parliament of India
♦ Founded: December 23, 1986
♦ Parent Organization: Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Government of India.
♦ President: Shri Ram Vilas Paswan, Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Government of India.
♦ Director General: Surina Rajan 


World Book of Records named Kapil Sharma as most viewed stand-up comedian in India and Abroad
The King of Comedy, Kapil Sharma, has been named as most viewed stand-up comedian in India and abroad by World Book of Records London.

Kapil Sharma as most viewed stand-up comedian in India and AbroadAdditional Points
i. He had started his career as a stand-up comedian from different comedy shows and got fame from “Comedy Nights with Kapil”.
ii. He had made his Bollywood debut in movie Kis Kisko Pyaar Karoon and his second movie was Firangi.

National Cadet Corps Girls expedition team of 20 from Sikkim flagged off to Mt Tenchenkhang
On May 17, 2019, National Cadet Corps girls mountaineering expedition team of 20 from Sikkim was flagged off to Mt Tenchenkhang, situated in Western Sikkim. This is the first girls expedition team ever since 1970. This expedition was flagged off by Additional Director General Major General Sanjay Gupta in New Delhi.
Key Points:
i. The expedition team is led by Lt Col Madhab Boro. It constitutes 3 officers (including Medical Officer), 17 Permanent Instructional staff and 20 NCC Girl Cadets from All India NCC directorates.
ii. The team expects to scale the 6010-meter high Mt Tenchenkhang by the end of June 2019.
About Sikkim:
♦ Capital: Gangtok
♦ Chief Minister: Pawan Kumar Chamling
♦ Governor: Ganga Prasad
♦ National Parks- Khangchendzonga National Park
♦ Wildlife Sanctuaries: Barsey Rhododendron WLS, Fambong Lho WLS, Kitam (Bird) WLS, Kyongnosla Alpine WLS, Maenam WLS, Pangolakha WLS, Shingba (Rhododendron) WLS


Australian PM Scott Morrison’s Liberal-National Coalition wins federal elections
Australian PM Scott Morrison’s Liberal-National Coalition won federal elections over the opposition Labor Party led byBill Shorten. The polling was held for 151 seats in the House of Representatives.

Scott MorrisonKey Points:
i. The party needed 76 seats to win as majority out of 151 seats.
ii. Australia has compulsory voting aged 18 and over and a system of ballots ranked by voter preference.
About Australia:
Capital: Canberra
Currency: Australian Dollar
President: Scott Ryan


ISRO announced Seven Mega Missions in next 10 years
Recently, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has announced to conduct seven Mega Missions for upcoming 10 years and also prepared a roadmap for the next 30 years. The seven Mega Missions includes India’s second moon mission Chandrayaan-2, XPoSaT and Aditya L-1.

ISROKey Highlights
i. ISRO has categorized its six Mega Missions (excluding Chandrayaan-2) in two broad categories-

  • Defined Missions: The mission includes XPoSaT and Aditya L-1.
  • Undefined Missions: The missions which are still in the planning stage. These missions are Mangalyaan-2, Venus Mission, Lunar Polar Exploration and Exoworlds.

ii. Rs 800 cr, Chandrayaan-2 will be flight ready by the May 2019 end and its spacecraft will be launched in July 2019.

  • It is also known as X-ray Polarimeter Satellite. The aim of this mission is to study polarisation. It will be launched in 2020 and the life of the mission will be of 5 years till 2025.
  • The payload for XPoSaT was developed by Bengaluru-based Raman Research Institute.
  • The spacecraft which will carry Polarimeter Instrument in X-rays (POLIX) payload study the degree and angle of polarisation of bright X-ray source in the energy range between 5 to 30 keV (Kilo electron volt)

Aditya L-1

  • The mission was planned to launch in mid-2020 which will study the solar corona.
  • The spacecraft of this mission will be placed in a halo orbit around the Sun-Earth Lagrangian point (L1) which is about 1.2 million km away from the earth.

About ISRO
♦ Headquarter: Bengaluru, Karnataka
Director: K Sivan

‘Flye’ a new computer programme developed by Australian National University (ANU) can help to develop precision medicine
Flye’ a new computer program developed by Australian National University (ANU) can help to develop precision medicine. It will be helpful to find out a person’s genetic makeup. The research is published in Nature Biotechnology.
i. Flye is a step-by-step procedure for computers to assemble genomes. It will enable the process to be much faster and accurate than the current best practice methods.
ii. With the use of long DNA sequences, Flye will improve the reliability of genome assemblies and lead to a range of biomedical applications. A long DNA sequence ranges between 5,000 and 20,000 DNA letters, whereas short sequences are typically 200 letters.

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Badminton World Federation launched 2 new formats of Badminton
Recently, Badminton World Federation (BWF) launched two new formats of Badminton named as AirBadminton & Triples. BWF launched AirBadminton at Guangzhou with new dimensions of the court and an innovative shuttlecock called Airshuttle.
Key Highlights
i. The AirBadminton will be an outdoor game as compared to traditional badminton which is indoor games.
ii. In new Triples format, the match will be played between a team which consists of three players each with at least one female player in both the team.
About Badminton World Federation (BWF)
Headquarter: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
♦  President: Poul-Erik Hoyer Larsen

Italian Open (Tennis) 2019
The 76th edition of Italian Open which is also known as “Rome Masters” or “the Internazionali BNL d’Italia” held at Foro Italico in Rome, Italy from May 13 to 19, 2019. It was a professional tennis tournament which played on outdoor clay courts. The Italian Open was classified as an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event on the ATP World Tour 2019 and a Premier 5 event on the WTA Tour 2019.
i. The total prize money for men’s tournament was €958,055 and for women’s tournament was €523,858.
ii. A Spanish tennis player Rafael Nadal won the record 9th title this year.
Medal Winners

1.Men’s SinglesRafael Nadal (Spain)Novak Djokovic (Serbia)
2.Men’s DoublesJuan Sebastian Cabal (Columbia)

Robert Farah (Columbia)

Raven Klaasen (South Africa)

Michael Venus (New Zealand)

3.Women’s SinglesKarolina Pliskova (Czech Republic)Johanna Konta (UK)
4.Women’s DoublesVictoria Azarenka (Belarus)

Ashleigh Barty (Australia)

Anna-Lena Gronefeld (Germany)

Demi Schuurs (Netherlands)

About Italy:
Capital – Rome
Currency – Euro
Prime Minister – Giuseppe Conte
President – Sergio Mattarella


World’s most mysterious text ‘Voynich Manuscript’ deciphered
The world’s most mysterious 600-year old manuscript named ‘Voynich Manuscript’ was finally deciphered by Bristol academician Dr. Gerard Cheshire and it took him just 2 weeks. The Voynich Manuscript contains information about astrological sex tips, parenting and psychology, abortion advice and herbal remedies.

Voynich ManuscriptKey Highlights
i. According to Dr. Gerard Cheshire’ paper published in Romance Studies journal, the manuscript was written in a dead language – proto-Romance.
ii. The book written in Voynich Manuscript was compiled by Dominican nuns as a source of reference for Maria of Castile, Queen of Aragon.
iii. The manuscript was written around mid-15th century and contains Catholic and Roman pagan religious beliefs. The book was discovered in 1912 by an antiquarian named Wilfrid Voynich.


Legendary stand-up comic Sammy Shore, Comedy Store Co-Founder, passed away aged 92 in Las Vegas, USA
On May 18, 2019, Legendary stand-up comedian Sammy Shore, the Co-Founder of Comedy Store, passed away aged 92 at home from natural causes in Las Vegas, USA. He is the father of actor and comedian Pauly Shore. Both spent the past 20 years together as a father-son comedy team. He hails from in Las Vegas, USA.

Sammy Shorei. He began his career in a partnership with Shecky Greene in Catskills.
ii. He co-founded the world-famous Comedy Store in Los Angeles with screenwriter and actor Rudy De Luca in 1972.
iii. He appeared in several films including “The Bellboy with Jerry Lewis and the Mel Brooks films “Life Stinks and History of the World: Part 1 He also appeared on the “Ed Sullivan Show”. He recorded several albums titled “Brother Sam, Come Heal With Me” and “70 Sucks, but 80 is Worse”.
iv. He has authored books like “The Man Who Made Elvis Laugh” and “The Warm-Up”. Before his death, he was finishing up a book titled “Last Comic Sitting (Confessions of a Pissed-Off Comic)”.

Shivappa Shetty, former FIFA Panel Referee passed away aged 86
On May 19, 2019, Shivappa Shetty, former FIFA Panel Referee passed away aged 86 due to multi-organ failure. All India Football Federation (AIFF) expressed the condolences on his death.

SS-Shettyi. He had served as Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Instructor, AIFF referees instructor, AIFF match commissioner, AIFF referee board member and as the President of the Bombay Referees Association.
ii. He was the main contributory in the formation of the Central Bank of India Football team and served as the sports General Secretary of the organization.
Asian Football Confederation(AFC):
Headquarters: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
President: Salman Bin Ibrahim Al-Khalifa
About FIFA:
Headquarters: Zurich, Switzerland
President: Gianni Infantino
About All India Football Federation (AIFF):
Headquarters: Dwarka, Delhi
President: Praful Patel


May 20 observed as World Metrology Day
World Metrology Day was observed on May 20, 2019 with a theme “The International System of Units – Fundamentally better”. This theme was chosen because last year on 16th November 2018, the General Conference on Weights and Measures agreed to revise the International System of Units (SI).

World Metrology DayKey Highlights
i. The World Metrology Day was celebrated every year because of the signature of the Metre Convention on May 20, 1875.
ii. The World Metrology Day project was jointly recognized by International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM) and International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML).
About International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM)
♦ Location: Sevres, France
♦ Director: Martin Milton
♦ Motto: Use the measure
About International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML)
♦ Headquarter: Paris, France

World Bee Day celebrated on May 20
World Bee Day is celebrated on May 20 annually. It is celebrated to raise the awareness of the importance of pollinators, the threats they face and their contribution to sustainable development. The theme of this year is “Save the Bees”.

World Bee DayKey Points:
i. This day was declared by the United Nations General Assembly and it was celebrated for the first time on May 20, 2018, in Slovenia.
ii. This day marks the birthday of Anton Janša (1734) who pioneered the modern beekeeping techniques in his native Slovenia in the 18th century.
iii. Slovenia had proposed to celebrate May 20 as World Bee Day. In December 2017, The United Nations and the UN Member States approved Slovenia’s proposal and since 2018 this day is celebrated.
About Slovenia:
♦ Capital: Ljubljana
♦ Currency: Euro
♦ President: Borut Pahor
About United Nations General Assembly:
♦ Founder: United Nations
♦ Headquarters: New York, USA
♦ President: María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés
♦ Designated President: Professor Tijjani Mohammad Bande (From September 2019)


Rajasthan Government to revamp ‘Ujala Clinics’ for adolescents
Rajasthan Government is set to revamp ‘Ujala Clinics’ for adolescents. It will appoint peer educators and shadow educators for counseling the youngsters in order to ensure coordination with other medical and health schemes.
Key Points:
i. Ujjala Clinics function under Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karyakram(RKSK) in 10 districts of the state. They are established at district hospitals, community health centers and selected primary health centers in Udaipur, Rajsamand, Banswara, Dungarpur, Jaisalmer, Barmer, Jalore, Bundi, Karauli and Dholpur districts.
ii. The adolescent health strategy is aimed at reducing malnutrition and anaemia. It will improve the knowledge and behaviour of the adolescents with regards to sexual and reproductive health.
iii. Ujala Clinic is the new name of Adolescent Friendly Health Clinic(AFHC).
About Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karyakram(RKSK):
It is health program launched by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for adolescents between the age group 10 and 19 years. The aim of this programme is the adolescent participation and leadership, equity and inclusion, gender equity and strategic partnerships with other sectors and stakeholders. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare along with United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) developed a National Adolescent Health Strategy. It focuses on age groups 10-14 years and 15-19 years with universal coverage i.e. males and females, urban and rural, in school and out of school, married and unmarried and vulnerable and under-served.
About Rajasthan:
♦ Capital: Jaipur
♦ Chief Minister: Ashok Gehlot
♦ Governor: Kalyan Singh
♦ National Parks: Mukundra Hills (Darrah) National Park, Desert National Park, Keoladeo Ghana National Park, Ranthambhore National Park, Sariska National Park
♦ Wildlife Sanctuaries: Mount Abu WLS, Nahargarh WLS, Kesarbagh WLS, Sariska WLS, Van Vihar WLS, Sawai Man Singh WLS etc

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