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  • Current Affairs 30th April 2019

    Updated : 30-Apr-2019
    Current Affairs 30th April 2019

    Current Affairs 30th April 2019 - Important Points

    • BCCI recommends four for Arjuna Award on - 27th April 2019
    • Sri Lankan President restrictions face veil on - 28th April 2019
    • Socialists win Spanish snap elections on - 28th April  2019
    • Pepsico and FC5 potato row on - 29th April 2019
    • World's first floating nuclear power plant to begin operations on - 19th May 2019
    • Iran warns to shut  - Hormuz Strait

    Current Affairs 25th April 2019 - Details

    BCCI recommends four for Arjuna Award on - 27th April 2019

    The BCCI on April 27th, 2019 suggested India pacers Mohammad Shami and Jasprit Bumrah, all rounder Ravindra Jadeja and women’s team spinner Poonam Yadav for the prestigious Arjuna award. The choice was taken during the SC-appointed CoA meeting in New Delhi. The Arjuna Awards are presented to bestow excellence in sports by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. On the other hand, All India Football Federation suggested the names of goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu and forward Jeje for the prestigious award.
    The Arjuna Awards are presented by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India to identify outstanding accomplishment in sports. Initiated in 1961, the award carries a cash prize of Rupees 500000,  a bronze statue of Arjuna and a scroll.
    Important Highlights

    • Jasprit Bumrah is presently playing in the IPL for Mumbai Indians. He is a regular across all 3 formats for India.
    • He will be leading India’s campaign in the forthcoming World Cup in the United Kingdom.
    • Pace bowler Mohammad Shami has been a vital part of the Indian bowling squad while all-rounder
      Jadeja has also made a comeback in the restricted-overs team and has been named in the 15 members squad for the World Cup in England and Wales.
    • Poonam Yadav, the 27 years old leg-spinner, is the 4th name to be nominated. She has picked up 63
      wickets from 41 One-Day International’s and 74 wickets from 54 T-20 games.

    Sri Lankan President restrictions face veil on - 28th April 2019

    Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena on April 28th, 2019 declared a restriction on covering of the face with burqa/veil/in any manner that avoids identification of the person. 
    The order comes a week after synchronized blasts hit 3 churches and 3 luxury hotels in the country, killing more than 250 people and injuring above 500 others.
    The President’s office informed in a statement that the restriction is to make sure national security. The
    order elucidated that face covering is an obstacle to make sure the identity of the people.
    The President took the decision to start a peaceful and cohesive society, which does not inconvenience any community as well as make sure national security.
    Important Highlights

    • The new guidelines were declared by President Maithripala Sirisena, using his emergency powers.
    • The order is effective from April 29th.
    • Under it, any garment/item that obstructs the identification of a person’s face would be restricted.
      With this, Muslim females will not be permitted to wear any form of face veils in public until further notice. 
    • The initiative comes days following local Muslim organisations requested Muslim females not to cover their faces with burqa to assist stabilize the security situation.

    Socialists win Spanish snap elections on - 28th April  2019

    Spain’s ruling centre-left socialist party has secured the snap elections that were organised on April 28th, 2019. The opinion polls had foretold a victory for outgoing socialist premier Pedro Sanchez.
    With 99% of the ballots counted, the Socialists led by PM Sanchez has secured 29% of the vote, capturing 123 seats in the 350 seats Congress of Deputies. As forecast, the Socialists must pursue backing from smaller parties to maintain power, as it has not got a clear majority. Sanchez announced post victory that he would soon open talks with other political parties.
    Important Highlights

    • Pedro Sanchez’s Socialist Workers’ party secured 123 seats, the conservative People’s party secured 66, the centre-right Citizens party secured 57, while the anti-austerity Unidas Podemos and its allies secured 42 seats respectively.
    • The new far-right Vox party made its national breakthrough by holding 10% of the vote, which would give it 24 seats.
    • Despite it being the nation’s 3rd general election in under 4 years, the voter turnout was 75.8%, well up on the 66.5% 2 years ago.
    • Sanchez welcomed the result and the high turnout as proof of Spain’s wish to move forward and discard the reactionary policies of some of his right-wing opponents.
    • However, the PSOE will still require to pursue the support of other parties to reach the 176 seats essential to form a government in Spain’s 350 seats congress of deputies.

    World's first floating nuclear power plant to begin operations on - 19th May 2019

    The world's only floating nuclear power unit, Akademik Lomonosov, is ready to initiate commercial
    operations in Russia. The nuclear plant was initiated by Russia on May 19th, 2018 at the St Petersburg
    The power plant is ready to begin generating power afterward a series of comprehensive and effective tests on its twin KLT-40 reactor system. The power generation at both of the 35 MWs KLT-40C reactors attained 100% of capacity on March 31st, with succeeding trails authorizing that both the main and the auxiliary equipment of the units, as well as the Process Control Systems, were working normally.
    Important Details

    • The ‘Akademik Lomonosov’ is to be the 1st of a fleet of floating Nuclear Power Plants to be stationed in the Russian Arctic.
    • The 144*30m power plant grips 2 reactors with two 35 MW nuclear reactors that are same to those utilised to power icebreaker ships.
    • The power plant has no propulsion of its own and it will be towed up North to avoid the high cost of
      shipping it by land piece by piece to inaccessible areas.
    • The power plant is accomplished of producing enough power a town of 200000 inhabitants, far above the 5000 living in Pevek.
    • It is supposed to function for 40 years, with the likelihood of the working life being extended to 50 years and  the 2 reactors will be refuelled once every 3 years.

    Pepsico and FC5 potato row on - 29th April 2019

    PepsiCo Inc has litigated 4 Indian farmers on April 29th, 2019 for cultivating a potato variety that
    the Pepsico claims infringes its patent. PepsiCo has charged the farmers for cultivating the FC5
    potato variety, cultivated exclusively for its popular Lay’s potato chips. The FC5 variety has a
    lesser moisture content needed to make potato chips.
    Farmers trust that section 39 of the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act, 2001
    permits farmers to grow and trade any variety of crop/seed as long as they don’t sell branded seed
    of registered varieties.
    PepsiCo’s view

    • PepsiCo has appealed Section 64 of the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act, 2001
      to claim infringement of its rights that bans anyone other than the breeder of seeds/registered
      licensee of that variety to sell, export, import/produces such variety.
    • The farmers were supposedly cultivating a variety of potato namely FL 2027, also known as FC5,
      on which PepsiCo demanded exclusive rights by virtue of a Plant Variety Certificate.
      Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights (PPVand FR) Act, 2001
    • Aim of the act is the formation of an effective system for the protection of plant varieties, the rights
      of farmers and plant breeders and to inspire the development of new varieties of plant.
    • Protection of innocent infringement: a right founded under this Act shall not be believed to be
      trespassed by a farmer who at the time of such violation was not aware of the existence of such
    • Scientist can use any of the registered variety under the Act for conducting an experiment / research. 
    • Scientists can utilise the early source of variety for the purpose of developing  another variety but repetitive usage requests the prior permission of the registered breeder.
    • A farmer can save, use, sow, re-sow, exchange, share/sell his farm produce including seed of a
      variety protected under the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act, 2001.
    • However, the farmer shall not be permitted to sell branded seed of a variety guarded under the
      Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act, 2001.

    Iran warns to shut  - Hormuz Strait

    Iran's top General Mohammad Bagheri has cautioned that Tehran could shut-down the strategic Hormuz Strait tension arises further. Freshly, United States has forced some sanctions and lifted off Significant Reduction Exceptions waivers.
    Hormuz Strait
    The waterway separates Iran and Oman, connecting the Gulf to the Gulf of Oman and Arabian Sea. The Strait is 33 kilometres wide at its narrowest point, but the shipping lane is just 3 kilometres wide in either direction.
    Importance of Hormuz Strait

    • The United States Energy Information Administration projected that 18.5 million barrels/day of
      seaborne oil passed via the waterway in 2016, that was around 30% of crude and other oil liquids sold by sea in 2016.
    • Approximately 17.2 million barrels/day of crude and condensates were projected to have been shipped via the Strait in 2017 and around 17.4 million barrels/day in the 1st half of 2018, as per to oil analytics firm Vortexa.
    • With universal oil consumption standing at around 100 million barrels/day passes via the Strait.
    • Most crude exported from Saudi Arabia, Iran, the UAE, Kuwait and Iraq, all members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Nations, is shipped via the seaway.
    • It is also the route utilised for closely all the Liquefied Natural Gas generated by the world’s biggest Liquefied Natural Gas exporter, Qatar.
    • Iran decided to rein in its nuclear program in return for an easing of approvals under a 2015 deal with the USA and 5 other global powers. Washington singled out of the pact in 2018. Western powers fear Iran wants to produce nuclear weapons which was denied by Tehran.

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