Factly articles for November11, 2020

9 min read

Interstate Migrant Policy Index

News: The Interstate Migrant Policy Index(IMPEX) has been released.

Facts:

  • IMPEX: It has been developed by Mumbai-based research non-profit India Migration Now(IMN).
  • Purpose: It ranks and compares all the states of India on a total value of 100 based on their migrant integration policies.
  • Parameters: The index examines eight policy areas–child rights, education, health and sanitation, housing, identity and registration, labour market, social benefits and political inclusion.

Key Takeaways:

  • Kerala has topped the index with a score of 57 followed by Goa (51) and Rajasthan (51).
  • The seven states of Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Kerala attract 51% of India’s inter-state migrants.

Indian astronomers collaborated with Nobel laureate on Thirty Meter Telescope Project

News: Indian Astronomers have collaborated with Nobel Laureate Prof. Andrea Ghez on the design of back-end instruments and possible science prospects of the Thirty Meter Telescope(TMT) project.

Facts:

  • Thirty Meter Telescope(TMT): It is an international partnership between CalTech, Universities of California, Canada, Japan, China and India; through the Department of Science and Technology(DST) and Department of Atomic Energy(DAE).
  • Purpose: To allow us to see deeper into space and observe cosmic objects with unprecedented sensitivity.
  • Location: Mauna Kea, Hawaii, USA.

Tata Group unveils first CRISPR Cas-9 based diagnostic tool for COVID-19

News:Tata Medical and Diagnostics Ltd has announced the commercial launch of CHECK, a novel diagnostic testing for COVID-19.

Facts:

  • CHECK: It is powered by FELUDA, a CRISPR Cas-9 technology that was developed in India by CSIR- IGIB for COVID testing.It is the world’s first CRISPR Cas-9 based diagnostic tool to be launched globally.

Additional Facts:

  • FELUDA: It is the acronym for FNCAS9 Editor Linked Uniform Detection Assay.It is a low cost paper strip test which can detect the presence of coronavirus within an hour.It uses indigenously developed CRISPR gene-editing technology to identify and target the genetic material of SARS-CoV2.
  • CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats): It is a gene editing technology. It can detect specific sequences of DNA within a gene and uses an enzyme functioning as molecular scissors to snip it.

Explained: What is the new peace deal between Armenia and Azerbaijan?

News: Russia has brokered a new peace deal between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Facts:

peace deal between Armenia and Azerbaijan

  • What is the Peace Deal?
    • Armenia and Azerbaijan will maintain positions in the areas that they currently hold.
    • All military operations are suspended and Russian peacekeepers will be deployed along the line of contact in Nagorno-Karabakh and along the Lachin corridor that connects the region to Armenia.
    • Refugees and internally displaced persons will return to the region and the adjacent territories and the two sides will also exchange prisoners of wars and bodies.

Additional Facts:

  • Nagorno-karabakh: It is a landlocked region in the South Caucasus within the mountainous range of Karabakh.It is located between western Asia and Eastern Europe.
  • Who Controls it? It is internationally recognised as part of Azerbaijan, but most of the region is controlled by Armenian separatists.

20th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation(SCO) Summit

News: The 20th Summit of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation(SCO) Council of Heads of State was held under the chairmanship of Russia.

Facts:

  • Shanghai Cooperation Organisation(SCO): It is a permanent intergovernmental international organisation founded in 2001 by Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
  • Members: China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. India and Pakistan were admitted to the SCO as permanent members in 2017.
  • Observed States: Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran and Mongolia.
  • Secretariat: Beijing, China.
  • Goals:
    • strengthening mutual trust and neighbourliness among the member states;
    • promoting effective cooperation in politics, trade, the economy, research, technology, culture, education, energy, transport, tourism, environmental protection,
    • making joint efforts to maintain and ensure peace, security and stability in the region;
    • Moving towards the establishment of a democratic, fair and rational new international political and economic order.
  • Heads of State Council (HSC): It is the supreme decision-making body in the SCO. It meets once a year and adopts decisions and guidelines on all important matters of the organisation.
  • SCO Heads of Government Council (HGC): It meets once a year to discuss the organisation’s multilateral cooperation strategy and priority areas, to resolve current important economic and other cooperation issues. It also approves the organisation’s annual budget.
  • Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure(RATS): It is a permanent organ of the SCO which serves to promote cooperation of member states against the three evils of terrorism, separatism and extremism.Headquarters: Tashkent,Uzbekistan.

Explained: Why Denmark is culling its 17-million strong mink population

News: Denmark which has recorded more than 55,000 cases of COVID-19 so far has also recorded over 200 human cases infected with SARS-CoV-2 variants that are associated with farmed Minks.

Facts:

mink

  • Mink: They are dark-colored, semiaquatic carnivorous mammals of the family Mustelidae which also includes weasels, otters and ferrets.
  • Significance: More than 50 million mink a year are bred for their fur mainly in China, Denmark, the Netherlands and Poland.Mink oil is used in some medical products and cosmetics as well as to treat, preserve and waterproof leather.
  • Species: There are two extant species referred to as “mink”: the American mink and the European mink.
  • The European mink is listed by the IUCN as Critically Endangered due to an ongoing reduction in numbers.