Factly articles for 22nd July 2020

13 min read

1.Union Minister launches RAISE Initiative

News: Union Power minister has launched the Retrofit of Air-conditioning to improve Indoor Air Quality for Safety and Efficiency(RAISE) national programme.

Facts:

  • Aim: To develop healthy and energy efficient buildings by improving indoor air quality in workspaces across the nation.
  • Bodies Involved: It is a joint initiative of Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) and the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) MAITREE programme.

Additional Facts:

  • Market Integration and Transformation Program for Energy Efficiency (MAITREE): It is a US-India bilateral Partnership program between the Ministry of Power and USAID.It is aimed at accelerating the adoption of cost-effective energy efficiency as a standard practice within buildings and specifically focuses on cooling.

2.HIV/AIDS vulnerable groups petition global fund

News: Vulnerable groups such as sex workers, transpersons, HIV/AIDS have petitioned Global Fund for AIDS,TB and Malaria(GFATM) against being deprived of sources of livelihood during the pandemic.

Facts:

  • Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria(GFATM): It was created in 2002 as a partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and people affected by the diseases.
  • Aim: To raise, manage and invest the world’s money to end epidemics of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
  • Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.

Additional Facts:

  • Tuberculosis(TB): It is an infectious airborne bacterial disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
  • Malaria: It is a disease caused by Plasmodium parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of infected female Anopheles mosquitoes.
  • HIV: It is the human immunodeficiency virus which targets the immune system and weakens people’s defense systems.AIDS is the acquired immune deficiency syndrome, the most advanced stage of HIV infection.

3.Army Gets World’s Most Agile, Lightest Surveillance Drone “Bharat”

Facts: Bharat is an indigenously developed drone developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO).The drone is equipped with artificial intelligence that helps it to detect friends and enemies and take action accordingly.

4.NFRA constitutes technical advisory committee

News: National Financial Reporting Authority(NFRA) has constituted a Technical Advisory Committee(TAC) under chairmanship of R.Narayanaswamy to aid and advise NFRA on issues related to the drafts of accounting standards and auditing standards.

Facts:

  • National Financial Reporting Authority(NFRA): It is an audit regulator constituted in 2018 by the Government of India under section 132(1) of the Companies Act, 2013.
  • Composition: The regulator will have 15 members including a chairperson, three full-time members and others as part-time members.
  • Functions and Duties:
    • Recommend accounting and auditing policies and standards to be adopted by companies for approval by the Central Government;
    • Monitor and enforce compliance with accounting standards and auditing standards;
    • Oversee the quality of service of the professions associated with ensuring compliance with such standards and suggest measures for improvement in the quality of service.
  • Powers: It can undertake investigation and impose penalties related to the following class of companies and bodies corporate namely:
    • Companies whose securities are listed on any stock exchange in India or outside India.
    • Unlisted public companies having paid-up capital of not less than Rs. 500 crores or having annual turnover of not less than Rs. 1,000 crores.
    • Insurance companies, banking companies and companies engaged in the generation or supply of electricity.

5.Union Minister virtually inaugurates Mizoram’s First Mega Food Park

News: Union Food Processing Minister has virtually inaugurated Mizoram’s first mega food park named “Zoram Mega Food Park”.

Facts:

  • Zoram Mega Food Park: It is located in Khamrang village in Mizoram. The project is being executed under the Mega Food Park Scheme.

Additional Facts:

  • Mega Food Park Scheme: The scheme was launched in 2008-09 by the Ministry of Food Processing Industries.
  • Aim: To provide a mechanism to bring together farmers, processors and retailers and link agricultural production to the market so as to ensure maximization of value addition, minimization of wastages and improving farmers’ income.
  • Funding: It provides a capital grant subject to a maximum of Rs.50 crore per project.
  • Approach: It has a Cluster based approach which is based on a hub and spokes model.
  • Implementation: It is implemented by a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) which is a Body Corporate registered under the Companies Act.
  • Features of the park: A Mega food Park consists of infrastructure for primary processing and storage near the farm in the form of Primary Processing Centres(PPCs) and Collection Centres(CCs) and common facilities and enabling infrastructure at Central Processing Centre(CPC).

6.New consumer protection Act comes into force

News: The Consumer Protection Act,2019 has come into force replacing the old Consumer Protection Act, 1986.

Facts:

  • Aim: To protect the rights of consumers by establishing authorities for timely and effective administration and settlement of consumers dispute.

Key Features of the Act:

  • Central Consumer Protection Authority(CCPA): It has been set up to promote, protect and enforce the rights of the consumer by inquiring into violations of consumer rights, investigating and launching prosecution at the appropriate forum among others.
  • Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission(CDRCs): They will be set up at the district, state and national levels.  
  • Alternate Dispute Resolution Mechanism of Mediation: A complaint will be referred by a Consumer Commission for mediation wherever scope for early settlement exists and parties agree for it.
  • Product liability: A manufacturer or product service provider or product seller will be held responsible to compensate for injury or damage caused by defective product or deficiency in services.
  • Rules on E-commerce and Unfair Trade Practices: Consumer Protection (E-commerce) Rules,2020 will be notified under the Act where E-commerce entities are required to provide information to consumers relating to return, refund, exchange, warranty and guarantee, delivery and shipment and country of origin among others.
    • Redressal: E-commerce entities have to acknowledge the receipt of consumer complaint within 48 hours and redress the complaint within one month from the date of receipt.They will also have to appoint a grievance officer for consumer grievance redressal.

7.China repeats claim on Bhutan’s east

News: China has said that it has offered Bhutan a “package solution” to its boundary dispute.

Facts:

There are three separate areas of disputed territory between Bhutan and China:

  1. Eastern sector dispute over the Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary: It is located in Trashigang District, Eastern Bhutan- close to the border with Arunachal Pradesh. China recently made territorial claims over Sakteng wildlife sanctuary at an online meeting of the Global Environment Facility (GEF)
  • Western Sector dispute over Doklam plateau: Doklam is an 89 sq.km patch of territory in Chumbi Valley between Sikkim and Bhutan which is claimed by China. It’s called the Donglang region by China, Bhutan calls it Doklam Plateau and India refers to it as Doka La.
  • Middle sector dispute over Pasamlung and Jakarlung valleys: It is a 495 sq km in Central Bhutan,

8.COVID-19: DGHS cautions against use of N-95 valved respirator masks

News: The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has cautioned against the use of N-95 valved respirator/ masks, stating that it doesn’t offer the desired protection against the spread of COVID-19.

Facts:

  • An N-95 respirator mask is a respiratory protective device with high filtration efficiency to airborne particles.
  • ‘N’ stands for non-oil meaning it can be used if oil-based particulates are not present
  • ‘95’ means it has 95% efficiency in filtering airborne particles.
  • Some N-95 masks come up with exhalation valve to ease out breathing and avoid heat up. However, masks with such valves may not be able to prevent Covid-19 spread as exhaled air goes out without filtration.