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The Hindu Newspaper 12th April 2020

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Consider the following statements:

  1. The four-member Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the RBI was constituted by the Central Government for the first time in 2016.
  2. The implementation of a flexible inflation targeting framework by the MPC has astatutory basis.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

2)Global Economic Prospects report is released by

3)Consider the following statements regarding Mission Shakti.

  1. Mission Shakti is an anti-satellite missile test conducted by DRDO.
  2. It makes India join an elite club of space superpowers having the capability to target satellites in outer space.
  3. The Outer Space Treaty prohibits only weapons of mass destruction in outer space.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

Explanation :-3 The principal international treaty on space is the 1967 Outer Space Treaty. India is a signatory and ratified it in 1982.

The Outer Space Treaty prohibits only weapons of mass destruction in outer space. India expects to play a key role in the drafting of an international law on prevention of arms race in outer space.

Map of the Day :- Hills of India

News:- TRAI wants set top boxes to be made interoperable

All about TRAI :-

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is a statutory body set up by the Government of India under section 3 of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997. It is the regulator of the telecommunications sector in India.

It consists of a Chairperson and not more than two full-time members and not more than two part-time members.

The TRAI Act was amended by an ordinance, effective from 24 January 2000, establishing a Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) to take over the adjudicatory and disputes functions from TRAI.

Explained :- When should we blow the shofar?

An infected person can transmit the virus directly to many uninfected persons.

The larger this number – called the Basic Reproductive Ratio, R0, pronounced R-nought – the more contagious is the disease caused by the virus.

The faster it will spread in the community.

R-nought can be viewed as the product of three numbers:

(1) the number of days an infected person remains infective (that is, can infect others),

(2) the number of susceptible persons available to infect and

(3) the chance that a susceptible person gets infected.

The easiest way to keep R-nought low is to keep ourselves distanced from every other person. That way, the chance that a susceptible person gets infected remains low. It is not sufficient to distance ourselves only from those who show symptoms of infection. We have to continue to distance ourselves from every other person.

When can Lockdown be Lifted:-

The current lockdown cannot go on forever. Is there a scientific basis to determine when the lockdown may be lifted?

If the chance that an infected person finds a person to infect is sufficiently low, then the virus will stop spreading. Then the lockdown can safely be lifted.

This will happen if a certain proportion of individuals in the country is immune. This proportion is called the “herd immunity threshold.

It is calculated as 1-(1/R0). For SARSCoV-2, R0 is 2 or 3. An R0 of 2 would mean a herd immunity thresholdof 1-(1/2) or 50%. An R0 of 3 would mean a herd immunity threshold of 1-(1/3) or 67%.

We should play safe. Therefore,lockdown can be safely lifted if about two thirds of our population attains immunity to the virus.

But how would we know that two third of our citizens has gained immunity. We need to estimate this proportion by testing our citizens selected randomly and in large numbers. Surveillance testing in communities has now been initiated in India. We hope that the results of these tests will be used to determine when to blow the shofar.

3)Covid-19 Infections:- Why are some infections mild and others lifethreatening?Depending on the degree of infection in the lungs, the inflammation and the fluid build-up can lead to pneumonia.

A patient will require hospitalisation to treat the breathlessness and ventilator support to artificially provide oxygen if the condition worsens.

However,massive levels of cytokines can cause extensive lung damage and a condition called Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome.

The unsustainable cytokine storm can cause organ damage far beyond the lungs and spread to the kidneys as well as the heart.

If the infection is acute, it can also lead to a depletion of the frontline white blood corpuscles tasked with fighting the infection and making the body vulnerable to other secondary infections, which may lead to death.

4)Price Stabilization Fund :-

Price Stabilisation Fund (PSF) refers to any fund constituted for the purpose of containing extreme volatility in prices of selected commodities. The amount in the fund is generally utilised for activities aimed at bringing down/up the high/low prices say for instance, procurement of such products and distribution of the same as and when required, so that prices remain in a range.

Many countries use such dedicated funds for stabilisation of major petroleum product prices, particularly if they are importers.

5)Consumerfeds :- Consumer Federations (known commonly as Consumerfeds) which undertake distribution of consumer goods at reasonable and affordable rates.

They undertake bulk procurement of consumer goods, essential goods, medicines etc. (including their imports if required), and supply to affiliated and/or other Co-operatives Societies and arrange for proper storage, packing, grading and transport of such goods.

6)ADB assures India of 2.2 bn US dollar support to fight against COVID-19 pandemic

About ADB:-

  • It is a regional development bank
  • established on 19 December 1966.
  • headquartered — Manila, Philippines.
  • official United Nations Observer.

The bank admits the members of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP, formerly the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East or ECAFE) and non-regional developed countries.

Voting rights:

It is modeled closely on the World Bank, and has a similar weighted voting system where votes are distributed in proportion with members’ capital subscriptions.

Roles and functions:

  1. ADB defines itself as a social development organization that is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration.
  2. This is carried out through investments – in the form of loans, grants and information sharing – in infrastructure, health care services, financial and public administration systems, helping nations prepare for the impact of climate change or better manage their natural resources, as well as other areas.

As Per ADB’s Website :- India was a founding member of ADB in 1966 and is now the bank’s fourth-largest shareholder and top borrower.

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