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Indian Express Explained 19th March 2020

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1)What is the Janata Curfew announced by PM Narendra Modi?

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday addressed the nation and called for a Janata Curfew on Sunday, March 22. He said this curfew will be “for the people and by the people of India” and will be from 7 am to 9 pm on Sunday.

PM Modi urged the entire nation to stay at home for the coming few weeks to arrest the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. He said senior citizens aged over 65 years should stay indoors at all cost for the next few weeks.

The  Imperial College’s COVID-19 Response Team suggests two “fundamental strategies” to tackle the coronavirus spread.

  1. The first is mitigation, focusing on slowing the epidemic spread so as to reduce peak healthcare demand while protecting those most at risk.
  2. The second is suppression, which aims to reverse epidemic growth by reducing case numbers to low levels and maintaining that situation indefinitely.

The team says suppression will minimally require “a combination of social distancing of the entire population, home isolation of cases and household quarantine of their family members”, supplemented by school and university closures.

2)Explained: Why there is only one white giraffe left in the world

Poachers have killed two extremely rare white giraffes in northeast Kenya, leaving just one such animal in the world.

The two giraffes to be killed were a mother and her seven-month-old calf. The mother’s other male calf is the one that survived.

The white appearance of the giraffe is due to leucism, a genetic condition that causes skin cells to have no pigmentation.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) had classified giraffes as vulnerable in the Red List in December 2016, when it noted that their population had dropped by over 40 per cent since 1985.

Further, as per IUCN, large losses of the species have occurred in East Africa, where roughly 86,000 giraffes have died since 1985.

According to IUCN, the four principal factors that have led to a population decline among giraffes are habitat loss, civil unrest, poaching and ecological issues.

The condition leucism, which leads to the white colour of these giraffes, is different from albinism, because of which animals lack melanin throughout their body.

Leucism, on the other hand, is partial and leads to pale or patchy colouration of the skin, hair, feathers, scales or cuticles, but not the eyes, according to the Corvid Isle blog.

 

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