US President Donald Trump backtracked from his remarks about injecting disinfectants into people to protect themselves from the disease caused by SARS-CoV-2 and maintained that he made those comments “sarcastically”.
- Following Trump’s comments, health authorities in New York City reported an unusually high number of New Yorkers who had ingested bleach or other household cleaning agents.
- Reckitt Benckiser, the British manufacturer of Dettol and Lysol issued a press release “under no circumstance should our disinfectant products be administered into the human body (through injection, ingestion or any other route)”.
How harmful can disinfectants be to the human body?
- Ingesting or injecting disinfectants and other kinds of household cleaning agents is harmful since these agents can be potentially poisonous and can even lead to death.
- The label for disinfectant and surface cleaner “Lizol”, for instance, which claims to kill 99.9 per cent germs cautions that the product is meant for “external use only”.
- 80% of Lizol is made up of benzalkonium chloride solution, which is a chemical with antimicrobial properties acting against pathogens such as bacteria, fungi and viruses.
- This chemical is primarily a skin irritant and can also behave as a skin allergen. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPC) classifies benzalkonium chlorides (BACs) in toxicity category II by oral and inhalation routes and category III via the dermal route.
Source : Indian Express ( Health )
ACCESS TO COVID-19 TOOLS (ACT) ACCELERATOR
Led by the World Health Organization, a long list of countries, industry groups, and nongovernmental organizations committed to joining a project called Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator.
- “Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator” is a Global Collaboration to Accelerate the Development, Production and Equitable Access to New COVID-19 diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines.
- A key goal is to level the global playing field so that any products will be available to rich and poor populations alike.
- The project, however, is still in the early stages. On May 4, countries and organizations are encouraged to start pledging contributions with an eye toward commitments worth about $8 billion in initial funding.
Source : Economic Times ( Health )
Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants -PAUSHAK
Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP), Lucknow, has developed scientifically proven two herbal products, which may boost immunity of the persons to avoid symptom generally associated with the coronavirus infection.
- CIMAP has decided to transfer the technology of its herbal products ‘CIM-Paushak’ and ‘Herbal Cough Syrup’ to the entrepreneurs and start-up companies.
- These two products were found to be effective in boosting the immunity of a person.
- Twelve valuable herbs including Puranva, Ashwagandha, Mulethi, Harad, Baheda and Sataver compounds have been used in both these products.
Important Info :
• Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP), Lucknow is a constituent laboratory of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
Source : The Hindu ( Health )
A Team of engineering students led by a IIT Bombay student have developed a low-cost mechanical ventilator named Ruhdaar using locally available materials. A Team of engineering students led by a IIT Bombay student have developed a low-cost mechanical ventilator named Ruhdaar using locally available materials.
- The team will now go for medical testing of the prototype. Once it is approved, it will be taken for mass production. The effort is to make it amenable for production by small scale industry.
- Ventilators are an important component of the medical infrastructure required for treating coronavirus-infected patients, providing critical breathing support to those falling critically ill.
Source : PIB ( Science & Technology)
HYDROGEN FUEL BUS AND CAR PROJECT
NTPC Ltd, India’s largest power producer and a central PSU under Ministry of Power, has invited Global Expression of Interest (EoI) to provide 10 Hydrogen Fuel Cell (FC) based electric buses and an equal number of Hydrogen Fuel Cell based electric cars in Leh and Delhi.
- The EoI has been issued by NTPC’s wholly owned subsidiary, NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam (NVVN) Limited.
- The move to procure Hydrogen Fuel Cell based vehicles is first of its kind project in the country, wherein a complete solution from green energy to the fuel cell vehicle would be developed.
- The initiative, which has been undertaken with support of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, will also harness renewable energy for generation of hydrogen and develop it’s storage and dispensation facilities as part of pilot projects at Leh and Delhi.
- The move to launch hydrogen powered vehicles aims at decarbonizing mobility segment.
Source : The Hindu ( Environment)
Saudi Arabia has abolished flogging as a punishment for crime.
- This reform was made in order to “bring the kingdom into line with international human rights norms against corporal punishment”.
- Previously, the courts could order the flogging of convicts found guilty of offences ranging from extramarital sex and breach of the peace to murder.
- Now, judges will have to choose between fines and/or jail sentences, or non-custodial alternatives like community service.
Important Info :
Raif Badawi case:
- The most high-profile instance of flogging in recent years was the case of Saudi blogger Raif Badawi who was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes in 2014 for “insulting” Islam and for setting up a liberal media forum.
- He was awarded the European parliament’s Sakharov human rights prize the following year.
Source : Indian Express ( International)
CENTRAL VIGILANCE COMMISSIONER
Retired bureaucrat Sanjay Kothari was sworn in as the next Central Vigilance Commissioner by President Ram Nath Kovind at an official oath-taking ceremony.
About Central Vigilance Commission (CVC):
- Background: The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) was set up by the Government in 1964 on the recommendations of the Committee on Prevention of Corruption, headed by K. Santhanam.
- Status: It is a statutory body governed by the Central Vigilance Commission Act 2003.
- Mandate: To inquire into offences alleged to have been committed under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 by certain categories of public servants of the Central Government, corporations established by or under any Central Act, Government Companies, societies and local authorities owned or controlled by Central Government.
- Composition: The Commission shall consist of a Central Vigilance Commissioner (Chairperson); and not more than two Vigilance Commissioners (Members).
- Appointment: They are appointed by the President on recommendation of a Committee consisting of the Prime Minister (Chairperson), the Minister of home affairs and the Leader of the Opposition in the House of the People.
Source : The Hindu ( Polity & Governance)
The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) opened the Rohtang Pass, three weeks in advance, for transporting essential supplies and relief materials to the Lahaul and Spiti districts of Himachal Pradesh amid the lockdown.
- Rohtang Pass is a high mountain pass (at 13,058 feet) on the eastern Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas.
- It connects the Kullu Valley with the Lahaul and Spiti Valleys of Himachal Pradesh.
- The pass lies on the watershed between the Chenab and Beas basins. On the southern side of this pass, the Beas River emerges from underground and flows southward and on its northern side, the Chandra River, a source stream of the river Chenab, flows westward.
- The operation to clear snow is carried out every year as the pass remains snow-bound for almost six months, from mid-November to mid-May.
Source : The Hindu (Geography )