1. NASA Climate Research Scientist Cynthia Rosenzweig Wins World Food Prize 2022
Recently the World Food Prize Foundation announced the name of Dr. Cynthia Rosenzweig from the United States of America as the winner of the World Food Prize 2022.
Rosenzweig was awarded this prize for his research 'Understanding the relationship between climate and food systems and how both will change and forecast in the future'.
The purpose of the World Food Prize is to recognize the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.
In the year 2021, the award was won by Dr. Shakuntala Harak Singh Thilstad, a leading nutritionist and in the year 2020, the award was won by Dr. Ratan Lal, an Indian American soil scientist.
About World Food Prize
The World Food Prize Prize was conceived in 1970 by Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Norman E. Borlaug for his work in global agriculture.
The World Food Prize was instituted in 1986.
It is also known as the "Nobel Prize for Food and Agriculture".
Dr. M.S. Swaminathan who is known as the father of Green Revolution in India was the first person to receive this award in the year 1987.
The award is presented each year in October on or around United Nations World Food Day (16 October).
The prize winner is presented with a sculpture designed by renowned artist and designer, Saul Bass, in addition to a cash prize of US$ 250,000.
The World Food Prize Foundation is located in Des Moines, USA.
2. Presidential poll : Value of vote of MPs likely to go down to 700 from 708
The vote value of a Member of Parliament is likely to drop from 708 to 700 in the Presidential elections to be held in July due to the absence of the Legislative Assembly in Jammu and Kashmir.
The term of the current President Ram Nath Kovind is ending on July 24.
The value of an MP's vote in the presidential election is based on the number of members elected in the Legislative Assemblies of the States and Union Territories, including Delhi, Puducherry and Jammu and Kashmir.
The Electoral College for the election of the President consists of members of the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and the Legislative Assemblies of states and union territories, including Delhi, Puducherry and Jammu and Kashmir.
Before being bifurcated into the two union territories of Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir in August 2019, the state of Jammu and Kashmir had 83 assembly seats.
The value of vote of a Member of Parliament
Since the 1997 presidential election the value of a Member of Parliament vote has been fixed at 708.
For the first presidential election in 1952, the value of a Member of Parliament's vote was 494.
This increased marginally to 496 in the 1957 presidential election, followed by 493 (1962), 576 (1967 and 1969).
Presidential elections were held in 1969 due to the death of President Zakir Hussain on 3 May 1969.
The value of an MP's vote in the 1974 presidential election was 723.
It was set to 702 for the presidential elections from 1977 to 1992.
Electing the President
The provisions for the election of the President are laid down in Article 54 of the Constitution of India.
This constitutional provision has been established by the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Election Act 1952.
The President of India has been recognized as the country's first citizen and head of state.
3. 'Asani' turns into severe cyclonic storm, Odisha and West Bengal on alert
Cyclone 'Asani' formed over the southeast Bay of Bengal intensified into a severe cyclonic storm on Sunday evening.
According to the India Meteorological Department, 'Asani' has turned into a 'severe' cyclonic storm, moving towards the east coast at a speed of 95-105 kmph.
Due to Asani, three states of West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha are expected to be affected where the Meteorological Department has been alerted.
Asani means “wrath” in Sinhalese.
The list of names of cyclones was released in 2020 with 169 names, which included 13 names from 13 countries.
The cyclone that will form after Asani will be called Sitrang, and the name has been given by Thailand.
Ghurni, Probaho, Jhar and Murasu are the upcoming names of cyclones from India.
Other cyclonic storms’ names include Biparjoy (Bangladesh), Asif (Saudi Arabia), Diksam (Yemen) and Toofan (Iran) and Shakti (Sri Lanka).
Names from India that have been used already include Gati, Megh, Akash.
Other designations that have been used earlier included Ogni, Helen and Fani from Bangladesh; and Laila, Nargis and Bulbul from Pakistan.
There are six Regional Specialised Meteorological Centres (RSMCs) and five Regional Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres around the world, responsible for issuing advisories and naming cyclonic storms.
The naming of cyclones in the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea began in September 2004.
4. PMJJBY, PMSBY, and APY complete seven years of providing social security net
Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMJJBY), Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMSBY) and Atal Pension Yojana (APY) completed seven years of providing social security on 9 May.
All these three schemes were launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 9th May 2015 in Kolkata, West Bengal.
These schemes have been successful in providing affordable insurance and security to the people.
These three social security schemes are dedicated to the welfare of citizens, recognizing the need to secure human life from unforeseen risks or losses and financial uncertainties.
Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY)
It is a one year life insurance plan which is renewed year after year
It provides coverage for death due to any reason.
Persons in the age group of 18-50 years having a savings bank or post office account are eligible to enrol under this scheme.
Life cover of Rs 2 lakh in case of death due to any reason with a premium of Rs 330 per annum.
As on 27 april 2022, the cumulative enrolments under the scheme have been more than 12.76 crore and an amount of Rs 11,522 crore has been paid for 5,76,121 claims.
Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY)
It is a one year accident insurance plan which is renewed year after year.
It provides coverage for death or disability due to accidents.
Persons in the age group of 18-70 years having a savings bank or post office account are eligible to enrol under this scheme.
Accidental death cum disability cover of Rs 2 lakh (Rs 1 lakh in case of partial disability) for death or disability due to accident.
As on 27 april 2022, the cumulative enrolments under the scheme have been more than 28.37 crore and an amount of Rs 1,930 crore has been paid for 97,227 claims.
Atal Pension Yojana (APY)
It is open to all bank account holders in the age group of 18 to 40 years and the contribution varies depending on the pension amount chosen.
After joining the scheme, the subscribers will get a minimum monthly pension of Rs 1000 or Rs 2000 or Rs 3000 or Rs 4000 or Rs 5000 at the age of 60 years depending on the contribution made by the subscriber.
More than 4 crore persons have subscribed to this scheme till 27th April 2022.
5. Sri Lankan president declares state of emergency for second time
Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa declared a state of emergency for the second time in five weeks on 6 May. Extensive powers have been given to the security forces.
Trade Unions halted public transport, blaming Rajapaksa for the economic crisis.
There has been unrest in Sri Lanka for several weeks due to the economic crisis.
As street protests intensified in Sri Lanka, Gotabaya first declared a state of emergency on 1 April, as citizens went through an economic crunch for food, fuel and medicines.
Process of declaring an Emergency in Sri Lanka
The power to declare a state of Emergency is vested in the President.
It is imposed under Article 155 of the Constitution of Sri Lanka.
The Public Security Ordinance (PSO) of 1947 provides the legal framework for a proclamation of emergency.
Under the Ordinance, a state of emergency may be declared "where the President is of the opinion that it is expedient to do so in the interest of public safety and the preservation of public order."
Emergency rules are valid for one month, but the President must seek ratification every 14 days for proclamations or extensions beyond one month.
Causes of economic crisis in Srilanka
Organic agricultural policy cut the government’s tax revenue.
COVID-19 hit Sri Lanka’s key foreign revenue earning sectors
Fast draining foreign reserves, a glaring trade deficit, and a related Balance of Payments problem.
Huge foreign loan and the drop in domestic production
The value of the Sri Lankan rupee has fallen to 300 against the US dollar, putting importers in trouble.
6. Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for a trafficking free nation
Railway Protection Force (RPF) signs MoU with Association for Voluntary Action (AVA) for a trafficking free nation.
The deliberations were taken forward with signing of MoU wherein both RPF and AVA (also known as Bachpan Bachao Andolan) pledged to work together to share information, build capacity of RPF personnel and railway employees to work against Human Trafficking.
A joint action by both the stakeholders under the framework of the MoU will certainly increase the reach and effectiveness of "Operation Aahat" (Action Against Human Trafficking) launched by RPF across the country.
Role of Railway Protection Force
Railway Protection Force has been entrusted with the responsibility of security of railway property, passenger area and passengers.
It has succeeded in rescuing more than 50,000 children from human trafficking since the year 2018 under "Operation Nanhe Farishte".
It has recently launched "Operation Aahat" to take strong action against human trafficking and rescue victims of human trafficking from the clutches of traffickers.
The RPF has also established Anti-Human Trafficking Units (AHTUs) at over 740 locations across India, which have been directed to take action against human trafficking.
Bachpan Bachao Andolan
Bachpan Bachao Andolan, associated with Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation was founded in 1979 under the leadership of Nobel laureate Mr. Kailash Satyarthi.
The mission of Bachpan Bachao Andolan is to end all forms of violence against children and to create a world where all children are free, safe and healthy and receive quality education.
7. WHO estimates 4.7 million COVID-19-linked deaths in India
According to a report by the World Health Organisation There were likely 4.7 million deaths, directly or indirectly attributable to COVID-19 in India in 2020 and 2021.
India officially estimated only 4.8 lakh cumulative deaths linked to COVID-19 by December 2021, which means the WHO's estimate is almost 10 times the government count.
The World Health Organisation said that in the past two years, about 15 million people have lost their lives either to the corona virus or to its effects on health systems.
In India, there were 5.3 lakh deaths among men aged 60 and above in 2020 and 19 lakh deaths in the same age group in 2021.
On the other hand, there were 3.5 lakh deaths among women 60 and older in 2020 and 15 lakh deaths in 2021.
Minutes after the WHO released its estimate, India "objected" to the methodology used by the organisation.
COVID-19-linked deaths Globally
Most of the additional deaths (84%) are concentrated in Southeast Asia, Europe and the Americas.
Nearly two-thirds of additional deaths are concentrated in just 10 countries globally.
Globally, the pandemic killed more men than women (57% male, 43% female) with a higher proportion of older people.
8. Over 51,000 frontline Railway Staff trained under Mission Rail Karmayogi
The central government said that more than 51,000 frontline railway employees have been trained under Mission Rail Karmayogi.
These staff have been trained by master trainers, who themselves have been trained at the Indian Institute of Transport Management, a centralised training institute under the Ministry of Railways.
About Mission Karmayogi
Mission Karmayogi was launched by the government in September, 2020 as the most important capacity building initiative anywhere in the world.
The project seeks to train around one lakh frontline railway employees over a period of six months.
The mission aims to change the attitude of these frontline workers by providing citizen centric training.
Mission Karmayogi will be instrumental in achieving the goal of a 5 trillion dollar economy set by the Prime Minister.
9. Govt prepares new draft National Youth Policy
The government has prepared a new draft of the National Youth Policy (NYP).
The Government has reviewed the existing draft National Youth Policy, 2014.
The draft NYP envisages a ten-year vision for youth development that India wants to achieve by 2030.
It is aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and works to 'unlock the potential of youth to take India forward'.
NYP drafted five priority areas such as education; employment and entrepreneurship; youth leadership and development; health, fitness and sports; and social justice.
Each priority sector is based on the principle of social inclusion keeping in mind the interests of the marginalised sections.
The Department of Youth Affairs seeks comments/views/suggestions on the draft NYP from all stakeholders.
10. Jeevala scheme for prisoners
The Prisons Department of the Government of Maharashtra has launched a first of its kind credit scheme called 'Jeevala' for prisoners lodged in jails across the state.
The loan scheme called 'Jivhala' has been introduced by the Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank for prisoners who are serving jail terms for more than three years.
The pilot project of this scheme was presented at Yerwada Central Jail in Pune.
This scheme will be extended to around 60 jails by the Maharashtra government.
The loan from this scheme can be used by the prisoners for the education of their children, medical treatment of family members, legal fees or other expenses.
About Maharashtra State
Formation - 1 May 1960
Capital- Mumbai (Summer), Nagpur (Winter)
Governor- Bhagat Singh Koshyari
Chief Minister- Uddhav Thackeray
Deputy Chief Minister- Ajit Pawar
Legislative Council seats- 78
Assembly seats - 288
Lok Sabha seats- 48
Other Schemes - Mission Kabach Kundal, Mission Oxygen Self Response Scheme, Swadhar Yojana