CHAMPIONS platform
Prime Minister recently launched the technology platform CHAMPIONS which stands for “Creation and Harmonious Application of Modern Processes for Increasing the Output and National Strength”.The portal is basically for making the smaller units big by solving their grievances, encouraging, supporting, helping and handholding.It is a real one-stop-shop solution of MSME Ministry.This ICT based system is set up to help the MSMEs in present difficult situation and also to handhold them to become national and international champions.
Detailed objectives of CHAMPIONS:
i.    Grievance Redressal: To resolve the problems of MSMEs including those of finance, raw materials, labor, regulatory permissions etc particularly in the Covid created difficult situation;
ii.    To help them capture new opportunities:  including manufacturing of medical equipments and accessories like PPEs, masks, etc and supply them in National and International markets;
iii.    To identify and encourage the sparks:  i.e. the potential MSMEs who are able to withstand the current situation and can become national and international champions.

National Productivity Council (NPC)
The National Productivity Council (NPC) celebrates the National Productivity Week from 12 February to 18 February, 2020. The main objective of the celebration is to encourage stakeholders in implementing productivity tools and techniques.
NPC is a national-level organisation that promotes production in India. It is established in 1958 by the Ministry of Industry, Government of India. It is an autonomous, multipartite, non-profit organisation and has been registered under the Societies Registration Act XXI of 1860. Also, NPC is a constituent of the Tokyo-based Asian Productivity Organisation (APO) that is an Inter-Governmental Body, of which the Government of India is a founder member.
National Productivity Council not only provides a solution but also increases productivity, competitiveness, profits, augments safety and ensures better quality.

National Crisis Management Committee
Cabinet Secretarychaired the third meeting of the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) to review the preparedness of States and Central Ministries/Agencies to deal with the Cyclonic Storm ‘AMPHAN’.
A NCMC has been constituted in the Cabinet Secretariat. The Committee works under the chairmanship of cabinet Secretary with members as Secretary to Prime Minister, Secretary (MHA), Secretary (MCD), Director (IB) and Secretary (R&AW). Secretary (Agriculture& Cooperation) act as Co-opted Member and an officer of Cabinet Secretariat is Convener of Committee.
 When a situation is to be handled by the NCMC, it will give such directions to the Crisis Management Group of the Ministry as deemed necessary. The Secretary(A&C) will be responsible for ensuring that all developments are brought to the notice of the NCMC promptly.


Depsang (LAC)
The LAC is the demarcation that separates Indian-controlled territory from Chinese-controlled territory. India considers the LAC to be 3,488 km long, while the Chinese consider it to be only around 2,000 km. It is divided into three sectors: the eastern sector which spans Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim, the middle sector in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh, and the western sector in Ladakh.
The alignment of the LAC in the eastern sector is along the 1914 McMahon Line, and there are minor disputes about the positions on the ground as per the principle of the high Himalayan watershed. This pertains to India’s international boundary as well, but for certain areas such as Longju and Asaphila. The line in the middle sector is the least controversial but for the precise alignment to be followed in the Barahoti plains.
The Depsang Plains are located at the Line of Actual Control.The Chinese Army occupied most of the plains in 1962.India controls the western portion of the plains as part of Ladakh, whereas the eastern portion is part of the Aksai Chin region, which is controlled by China and claimed by India.


Annual TB Report
Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare has released the annual TB Report 2020. They also released a Joint Monitoring Mission (JMM) report, a manual on Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) to TB patients under NIKSHAY system, a Training Module, and the quarterly newsletter NIKSHAY Patrika.The key achievements listed in the Report include:
    Around 24.04 Lakh TB patients have been notified in 2019. This amounts to a 14% increase in TB notification as compared to the year 2018.
    Achieving near-complete on-line notification of TB patients through the NIKSHAY system.
    Reduction in the number of missing cases to 2.9 lakh cases as against more than 10 lakhs in 2017.
    Private sector notifications increased by 35% with 6.78 lakh TB patients notified.
    Due to easy availability of molecular diagnostics, the proportion of children diagnosed with TB increased to 8% in 2019 compared to 6% in 2018.
    Provision of HIV testing for all notified TB patients increased from 67% in 2018 to 81% in 2019.
    Expansion of treatment services has resulted in a 12% improvement in the treatment success rate of notified patients.  For 2019 it is 81% compared to 69% in 2018.
    More than 4.5 lakh DOT Centers provide treatment covering almost every village across the country.
    NIKSHAY also expanded the provision of four Direct Benefit Transfers (DBT) schemes of the programme –
o    NikshayPoshanYojana (NPY) to TB patients
o    The incentive to Treatment Supporters
o    Incentive to Private Providers and
o    Transport incentive to TB patients in the notified tribal areas

NashaMukt Bharat Annual Action Plan
“NashaMukt Bharat: Annual Action Plan (2020-21) for 272 Most Affected Districts' was recently e-launched by Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment on the occasion of “International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking”.
    NashaMukt Bharat Annual Action Plan for 2020-21 would focus on 272 most affected districts and launch a three-pronged attack combining efforts of Narcotics Bureau, Outreach/Awareness by Social Justice and Treatment through the Health Department. TheAction Plan has the following components-
Awareness generation programmes; Focus on Higher Educational institutions, University Campuses and Schools; Community outreach and identification of dependent population; Focus on Treatment facilities in Hospital settings; and Capacity Building Programmes for Service Provider.
     The Ministry will provide community based services for the identification, treatment and rehabilitation of addicts through Voluntary Organizations. It provides financial assistance to NGOs across the country for running de-addiction centres. The Ministry has also set up a 24x7 National Toll Free drug de-addiction helpline number 1800110031 to help the victims of drug abuse, their family and society at large.


38th Parallel
38th parallel is a popular name given to latitude 38° N that in East Asia roughly demarcates North Korea and South Korea. The line was chosen by U.S. military planners at the Potsdam Conference (July 1945) near the end of World War II as an army boundary, north of which the U.S.S.R. was to accept the surrender of the Japanese forces in Korea and south of which the Americans were to accept the Japanese surrender.
The line was intended as a temporary division of the country, but the onset of the Cold War led to the establishment of a separate U.S. oriented regime in South Korea under Syngman Rhee and a communist regime in North Korea under Kim Il-sung.


Jaya Jaitly Task Force
The Government of India under the chairmanship of Ms. Jaya Jaitlyhas set up a Task Force to examine matters pertaining to age of motherhood, imperatives of lowering MMR, improvement of nutritional levels and related issues. The Task Force will examine the correlation of age of marriage and motherhood with:
    Health, medical well-being and nutritional status of mother and neonate/infant/child, during pregnancy, birth and thereafter,
    Key parameters like Infant Mortality Rate (IMR), Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR), Total Fertility Rate (TFR), Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB), Child Sex Ratio (CSR) etc. and
    Any other relevant points pertaining to health and nutrition in this context.
It will be provided secretarial assistance by the NITI Aayog and will submit its report by July, 2020. It will suggest suitable legislations and amendments in existing laws to support its recommendations; and also work out a detailed roll-out plan with timelines to implement these recommendations. It will also suggest the measures for promoting higher education among women.


IFLOWS
IFLOWS is Integrated Flood Warning System that provides all information related to flood prone areas. The goals of the IFLOWS Program are to substantially reduce the annual loss of life from flash floods, reduce property damage, and reduce disruption of commerce and human activities.  IFLOWS-Mumbai is developed as a state of art Integrated Flood Warning system for Mumbai to enhance the resilience of the city of Mumbai by providing early warning for flooding specially during high rainfall events and cyclones.
    I-FLOWS is built on a modular structure and comprises of seven modules, namely Data Assimilation, Flood, Inundation, Vulnerability, Risk, Dissemination Module and Decision Support System.  The system incorporates weather models from National Centre for medium Range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF), India Meteorological Department (IMD), field data from the rain gauge network stations setup by Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM),Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) and IMD, thematic layers on land use, infrastructure etc provided by MCGM. Based on inputs from weather models, Hydrologic models are used to transform rainfall into runoff and provide inflow inputs into the river systems. Hydraulic models are used to solve equations of fluid motion to replicate the movement of water to assess flooding in the study area.

Malathion (pesticide)
Recently, State-owned insecticide manufacturer HIL (India) Ltd has supplied about 25 tonnes of Malathion 95 per cent ULV (ultra-low volume) to Iran to help the country control the locust menace. Malathion is an insecticide in the chemical family known as organophosphates. Products containing malathion are used outdoors to control a wide variety of insects in agricultural settings and around people's homes. Malathion has also been used in public health mosquito control and fruit fly eradication programs. Malathion may also be found in some special shampoos for treating lice.
    Malathion kills insects by preventing their nervous system from working properly. When healthy nerves send signals to each other, a special chemical messenger travels from one nerve to another to continue the message. The nerve signal stops when an enzyme is released into the space between the nerves. Malathion binds to the enzyme and prevents the nerve signal from stopping. This causes the nerves to signal each other without stopping. The constant nerve signals make it so the insects can't move or breathe normally and they die.

ADIP Scheme
    Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment recently has done the First ever distribution of assistive aids & devices to divyangjan through virtual platform under ADIP Scheme.
    Amidst the prevailing unprecedented situation faced by the society due to Pandemic COVID-19, special measures have been taken by Government of India so that the benefits of welfare scheme for Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan) continue uninterrupted.
    In this endeavor adopting all the preventive measures, a Virtual ADIP Camp for free distribution of assistive aids and devices at Block level for Divyangjans under the ADIP scheme of Government of India was organized at TalwandiBhai Block of Firozpur District in Punjab.
For more Information See KSG Current Connect Feb 2020 page no. 29 and 30