Current Affairs- 5th August
Science and Technology
India’s first earthquake early warning system launched
- India’s first Earthquake Early Warning (EEW) system was unveiled in Uttarakhand on Wednesday.
- A new app, the Uttarakhand Bhookamp Alert app, has been developed by the Uttarakhand State Disaster Management Authority (USDMA) and the Indian Institute of Technology-Roorkee. Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami launched the Uttarakhand Bhookamp Alert app. It is the first state to make such an app which is aimed at strengthening public safety, said the Chief Minister’s Office.
- In the event of an earthquake, an alert will be sent out over the phones in the areas that are expected to experience seismic waves, giving people time to seek out safe spots. It will resemble those in Japan, Mexico, and the United States.
Events being organised in 75 cities to honour the courage of bravehearts
- To mark the 75th year of Independence, Gallantry Awards Portal is organising an event in collaboration with the Armed Forces, Border Roads Organisation and National Cadet Corps in 75 cities across the country to pay tributes to the bravehearts who made the supreme sacrifice in the service of the Nation. Under the initiative, motivational talks and felicitation ceremonies are being organised in honour of the gallant heroes.
- Seventy five cities across the nation have been selected to honour the courage, character and commitment of the bravehearts and their families with a view to instill a sense of devotion and patriotism among citizens, especially the youth.
Maldives style water villas soon in Lakshadweep
- Lakshadweep will soon have water villas similar to those in the Maldives.
- Taking to Twitter, Lakshadweep Administrator Praful Khoda Patel on Wednesday said water villas will be set up at the cost of ₹800 crore to attract tourists to the scenic beauty of Lakshadweep.
- “Magnificent water villas will be set up at the cost of ₹800 crore to attract tourists to the picturesque and scenic beauty of Lakshadweep. This project is India’s first of its kind, where the world-class facility will be provided by a solar-powered, eco-friendly villa,” tweeted Patel.
PM Modi to preside over high-level virtual open debate of UNSC
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi will preside over a high level virtual open debate of the UN Security Council on the topic – Enhancing Maritime Security – a case for international cooperation on 9th of this month.
- This would be the first time that an India Prime Minister would be presiding over a meeting of the UN Security Council. India is currently holding the presidency of UN Security Council for the month of August. As part of India’s presidency, country is organising signature events on three focus areas. These are maritime security, peacekeeping operations, and counter terrorism.
U.S. approves potential sale of howitzers to Taiwan
- Taiwan thanked the United States today for agreeing to sell 40 howitzer artillery systems in a 750 million dollar deal that will help the island better defend itself from a Chinese invasion.
- Taipei’s foreign ministry said Thursday it was the first major arms sale announced since President Joe Biden took office in January and would help the island, maintain a rock-solid self-defence and regional peace and stability.
- The State Department approved the sale of 40 155mm M109A6 medium self-propelled howitzer artillery systems on Wednesday in a deal that will need to be approved by Congress.
Coral-damaging sunscreens banned in marine parks
- Thailand has banned sunscreens containing chemicals that damage coral from all of its marine national parks. Concerns are growing that lotions tourists use for sun protection are harming slow-growing corals.
- The Thai Department of Conservation said four ingredients commonly found in sun creams were shown to destroy coral larvae, obstruct coral reproduction and cause reef bleaching.
- Anyone flouting the ban can be fined up to 100,000 baht (£2,100). However, officials have not said how they plan to enforce the new rule. The banned lotions are those containing oxybenzone, octinoxate, 4-methylbenzylidene camphor or butylparaben.
India, World Bank sign $250 mn project for making dams safe
- India and World Bank have signed 250 million dollar project to make existing dams safe and resilient. The Government of India, the Central Water Commission, government representatives from 10 participating states and the World Bank signed the project for long-term dam safety program.
- The project will be implemented in approximately 120 dams across the states of Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Odisha, Rajasthan, and Tamil Nadu, and at the national level through the Central Water Commission.
India wins bronze medal in men's hockey in Tokyo Olympics
- Indian men’s Hockey team scripted history with their sticks as they defeated Germany 5-4 to win a bronze in Tokyo Olympics. The quest for medal for India ended after the wait of 41 years as men in blue outplayed Germany in every quarter in a high scoring match. For India, Simranjit Singh scored two goals and Harmanpreet, Hardik, Rupinder Pal Singh scoring one goal each.
- Indian men kept the lead intact. With just about 7 seconds left into the game, Germany earned a Penalty corner but could not penetrate the Indian wall, Sreejesh.
Wrestler Ravi Kumar Dahiya bags 2nd silver medal for India
- In Tokyo Olympics, participants displayed mixed performance today. India got one silver and bronze medal in 57kg freestyle wrestling and hockey. However they failed to perform in other category in wrestling. Indian grappler Ravi Dahiya has secured silver medal. He was defeated by the reigning world champion Zavur Uguev of Russian Olympic Committee in the freestyle 57 kilogram final by 4-7.
- However Deepak Punia’s quest for medal ended as he was beaten by Myles Amine of San Marino by 2-4 in 86 kg wrestling category quarterfinal clash.
Balakot Air-Strike by Manan Bhatt
- A new book revisits the chain of real-life events surrounding February 2019 Pulwama suicide bombing attack, and India’s strong hit-back in the form of Balakot airstrikes twelve days later.
- “Balakot Air Strike: How India Avenged Pulwama”, published by Garuda Prakashan, is written by Navy veteran Manan Bhatt.
- The book, in its detailed account of the “two epochal events”, claims to capture everything “from moments before the ill-fated CRPF bus was hit, to the cockpits from where precision bombs were triggered and what transpired in those 12 momentous, expectation-filled days”.
Other Important Affairs
- India has expressed its happiness that Bangladesh has decided to accept the invitation to join the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI).
- Parliament has passed the Essential Defence Services Bill, 2021 with the Rajya Sabha approving it today amidst din. The Lok Sabha has already cleared the Bill. The Bill allows the central government to prohibit strikes, lock-outs, and lay-offs in units engaged in essential defence services. It amends the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 to include essential defence services under public utility services.
- India has categorically rejected the reference to the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir issued by the General Secretariat of Organization of Islamic Cooperation, OIC and termed it unacceptable.
- Mini Ipe has taken charge as a managing director of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), the insurer said in a statement. Prior to this, she was executive director in the Legal Department.