Current Affairs 16-17 November, 2019


1. Union Minister Harsh Vardhan launches SAANS campaign to curb pneumonia deaths in kids

  • Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Harsh Vardhan launched 'SAANS', a campaign aimed at reducing child mortality due to pneumonia, which contributes to around 15 per cent of deaths annually of children under the age of five.
  • SAANS, short for 'Social Awareness and Action to Neutralise Pneumonia Successfully' was launched by the Union Health Ministry to mobilise people to protect children from pneumonia, and train health personnel and other stakeholders to provide prioritised treatment to control the disease.
  • The government aims to achieve a target of reducing pneumonia deaths among children to less than three per 1000 live births by 2025, a senior health department official said.

Foot Notes:
Health and Family Welfare Minister: Harsh Vardhan

2. National Press Day celebrated on November 16; marks the foundation of Press Council of India in 1966

  • National Press Day – The 16th of November – is symbolic of a free and responsible press in India. This was the day on which the Press Council of India started functioning as a moral watchdog to ensure that not only did the press maintain the high standards expected from this powerful medium but also that it was not fettered by the influence or threats of any extraneous factors.
  • Though there are several Press or Media Councils world over, the Press Council of India is a unique entity in as-much-as this is the only body to exercise an authority even over the instruments of the state in its duty to safeguard the independence of the press.
  • Recommending the establishment of Press Council in 1956 the Iast Press Commission had concluded that the best way of maintaining professional ethics in journalism would be to bring into existence a body with statutory authority, of people principally connected with industry whose duty it would be to arbitrate. To this end the Press Council of India was established and the body that was evolved since November 16, 1966 has not belied the objective.

3. Mumbai tops ranking for quality of tap water, Delhi lowest

  • According to a Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) study, Mumbai ranks the highest in the quality of water among capital cities in states where samples of tap water were tested. In Mumbai, all 10 samples of tap water passed the BIS test.
  • Second in the list is Hyderabad, where only one sample failed. However, at the bottom of the list is Delhi, where all 11 samples failed the BIS test — thereby reaffirming that the capital city has the poorest water quality, the BIS study put.

4. India conducts first night trial of Agni-II missile

  • India successfully conducted the first night trial of nuclear-capable intermediate range ballistic missile Agni-II from the Abdul Kalam Island off the Odisha coast. The Strategic Forces Command of the Indian Army test-fired the versatile surface-to-surface medium-range nuclear-capable missile from launching complex IV of the Integrated Test Range.
  • Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the missile has already been inducted into the armed forces.
  • Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the missile has already been inducted into the armed forces.

 Foot Notes:
About DRDO
Headquarters location: New Delhi
Motto: बलस्य मूलं विज्ञानम्; "Strength's Origin is in Science" (Sanskrit)
Founded: 1958
Directors: Dr G. Satheesh Reddy

About Indian Army
Chief of Army: Bipin Rawat.

5. Pakistan becomes the first country to introduce WHO approved typhoid vaccine.

  • Pakistan has become the first country in the world to introduce a new typhoid vaccine as the country grapples with an ongoing outbreak of a drug-resistant strain of the potentially fatal disease. The vaccine, approved by the World Health Organization (WHO), will be used during a two-week immunisation campaign in southern Sindh province.
  • The new vaccines have been provided by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, to the Pakistani government free of cost.
  • In 2017, 63 per cent of the typhoid cases documented and 70 per cent of the fatalities were children, according to a joint press release from the Pakistani government, WHO and Gavi.

Foot Notes:
About Pakistan
Prime minister: Imran Khan
Capital: Islamabad
Currency: Pakistani rupee

6. Justice Ravi Ranjan takes oath as new CJ for Jharkhand HC

  • Justice Ravi Ranjan took oath as the new chief justice of the Jharkhand High Court. Governor Droupadi Murmu administered the oath to Ranjan at the Raj Bhavan here.
  • The post of the chief justice of Jharkhand High Court was lying vacant after the elevation of former chief justice Aniruddha Bose to the Supreme Court earlier this year.

Foot Notes:
About Jharkhand
Capital: Ranchi
Chief Minister: Raghubar Das

7. World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims observed on November 17

  • The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims (WDR) is commemorated on the third Sunday of November each year – to remember the many millions killed and injured on the world’s roads, together with their families, friends and many others who are also affected. It is also a Day on which we thank the emergency services and reflect on the tremendous burden and cost of this daily continuing disaster to families, communities and countries, and on ways to halt it.
  • From 1995, road victim organisations under the umbrella of the European Federation of Road Traffic Victims (FEVR) observed this Day together – first as European Day of Remembrance, but soon as World Day when NGOs from Africa, South America and Asia, who were associated members of FEVR, joined.
  • Therefore  FEVR is the creator and first owner of the World Day of Remembrance. Already from 2000, the Pope and other religious leaders remembered road victims worldwide on the 3rd Sunday of November, calling it ‘World Day’.

8. India’s Harmeet Desai wins men’s singles title at the ITTF Challenge Indonesia Open Table Tennis tournament

  • Indian paddler Harmeet Desai staved off a strong challenge from compatriot Amalraj Anthony to win the ITTF Challenge Indonesia Open in Batam, Indonesia.
  • In an all-Indian men’s singles final, it was Harmeet who started on a positive note winning the opening game 11-9 but he lost the next game 9-11, allowing Amalraj to draw level.
  • World no 104 Harmeet, however, took control of the proceedings and won the next two games by an identical margin of 11-9 to go 3-1 up in the match.

Foot Notes:
About Indonesia
Capital: Jakarta
Currency: Indonesian rupiah

9. National Tribal Festival Aadi Mahotsav to begin in New Delhi

  • Union Home Minister Amit Shah will inaugurate the National Tribal Festival “Aadi Mahotsav” in New Delhi.
  • The theme of the 15-day Mahotsav is celebration of the Spirit of Tribal Culture, Craft, Cuisine and Commerce. It will be held at Dilli Haat in INA, New Delhi.
  • The tribal textiles manufactured by master tribal craftsmen from Jammu & Kashmir in the North to Tamil Nadu in the South and from Gujarat in the West to Nagaland/Sikkim in the East will be the main attractions.

10. International Day for Tolerance: 16 November

  • The United Nations observes “International Day for Tolerance” on 16th November every year. The United Nations is committed to strengthening tolerance by fostering mutual understanding among cultures and peoples.
  • In 1995, to mark the United Nations Year for Tolerance and the 125th anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi, UNESCO created a prize for the promotion of tolerance and non-violence.
  • The UNESCO-Madanjeet Singh Prize for the Promotion of Tolerance and Non-Violence rewards significant activities in the scientific, artistic, cultural or communication fields aimed at the promotion of a spirit of tolerance and non-violence. The prize is awarded every two years on the International Day for Tolerance, 16 November.

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