1. SCO Online International Exhibition

The issue in news

The first-ever SCO Online International Exhibition on Shared Buddhist Heritage commences.

Main points

  • The exhibition is developed and curated by the National Museum, New Delhi, in active collaboration with SCO member countries.
  • The exhibition deploys state of the art technologies like 3D scanning, webGL platform, virtual space utilization, innovative curation and narration methodology, etc.
  • Buddhist philosophy and art of Central Asia connect SCO countries to each other.
  • The participating museums are the national museums of India, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
  • The visitors can explore the Indian Buddhist treasures from the Gandhara and Mathura Schools, Nalanda, Amaravati, Sarnath, etc. in a 3D virtual format.


  1. Assistance to Disabled Persons Camp

The issue in news

Assistance to Disabled Persons (ADIP) Camp for free distribution of assistive aids and devices to Divyangjan or Divyang was recently inaugurated by the Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment, virtually

Main points

  • The Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO), Kanpur organized the camp.
  • ALIMCO is a not-for-profit Central Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) established in 1972 amnd it works under the aegis of the Department of Empowerment of Person with Disability (DEPwD).

Assistance to Disabled Persons Scheme:

  • The ADIP scheme is implemented by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. ADIP aims to provide Assistance to Disabled Persons for purchasing and fitting of aids.
  • In order to become a beneficiary under the scheme, a person should be an Indian citizen. He or she should hold 40% disablement certificate. His monthly source of income should not exceed Rs 20,000 per month.


  1. Influenza and Bacterial Infection

The issue in news

Recently, researches at Sweden’s Karolinska Institute  came out with findings on superinfections and highlighted that influenza makes people more susceptible to bacterial infections.

Main points

Superinfections: is a second infection superimposed on an earlier one, especially by a different microbial agent of exogenous or endogenous origin, that is resistant to the treatment being used against the first infection.

They occur after or on top of an earlier infection, especially following treatment with broad-spectrum antibiotics.


  • For example, influenza is caused by a virus, but the most common cause of death in influenza patients is secondary pneumonia, which is caused by
  • However, the reason behind influenza infections leading to an increased risk of bacterial pneumonia is not known.

Findings of the Research:

  • When an individual is infected by influenza different nutrients and antioxidants, such as vitamin C, leak from the blood.
  • The absence of nutrients and antioxidants creates a favourable environment for bacteria in the lungs.
  • The bacteria adapt to the inflammatory environment by increasing the production of an enzyme called High temperature requirement A (HtrA).
  • The presence of HtrA weakens the immune system and promotes bacterial growth in the influenza-infected airways.
  • The ability of pneumococcus to grow seems to depend on the nutrientrich environment with its higher levels of antioxidants that occurs during a viral infection, as well as on the bacteria’s ability to adapt to the environment and protect itself from being eradicated by the immune system.


The information can contribute to the research on Covid-19.



  • Influenza is an acute viral infection of the respiratory tract which is considered to be one of the life-threatening infectious diseases.
  • The virus can be transmitted by direct contact with infected individuals, via contaminated objects (also called fomites) and by inhalation of virus-laden aerosols.
  • An unexpected emergence of a new and highly virulent influenza virus strains can result in a world-wide pandemics with high morbidity and mortality – such as the “avian flu” in 1997 and “swine flu” in 2009.
  • Human influenza viruses are single-stranded RNA viruses. The main targets of the virus are the columnar epithelial cells of the respiratory tract, i.e. trachea, bronchi and bronchioles.
  • Infectivity of influenza virus particles depends on the pH, temperature and salinity of the water, as well as the UV irradiation.

The types of Influenza

  • Influenza is caused by three types of RNA viruses called influenza types A, B and C (considered different genera), which all belong to the family Orthomyxoviridae.
  • The disease, colloquially called “flu” in humans, is generally caused by the viruses A and B.
  • Subtypes of influenza A and B viruses can be further characterized into strains. There is a plethora of different strains of influenza B viruses and of influenza A subtypes, and new strains of influenza viruses can appear and replace older strains.
  • Influenza type A viruses are known to infect people, birds, pigs, horses, whales, seals and other animals, but wild birds represent the natural hosts for these viruses.
  • Only a fraction influenza A subtypes (i.e. H1N1, H1N2 and H3N2) are currently in general circulation among people.
  • Influenza B viruses are responsible the same spectrum of disease as influenza A. And, influenza B viruses do not cause pandemics.
  • Influenza C viruses are different in comparison to influenza A and B. They cause a mild respiratory illness and are not thought to cause epidemics.


  1. Peacock Soft-shelled Turtle

The issue in news

Recently, Peacock soft-shelled turtle (a turtle of a vulnerable species) has been rescued from a fish market in Assam’s Silchar.

Main points

Characteristics, Habitat and Behaviour:

  • The Indian peacock softshell turtle has a large head, downturned snout with low and oval carapace of dark olive green to nearly black, sometimes with a yellow rim.
  • The head and limbs are olive green; the forehead has dark reticulations and large yellow or orange patches or spots, especially behind the eyes and across the snout, that are larger than those in its sister species.
  • Males possess relatively longer and thicker tails than females, with the cloaca situated close to the tail-tip.
  • Indian peacock sof tshell turtle is found in rivers, streams, lakes and ponds with mud or sand bottoms. It is omnivorous, juveniles observed feeding on mosquito larvae and fish,
  • while adults consume snails, earthworms, prawns, fish, frogs, carrion, and vegetation. Animals maintained in captivity are known to eat rice and palm sugar sweetmeats.

Major Threats:

  • The species is heavily exploited for its meat and calipee (the outer cartilaginous rim of the shell).
  • Threats in the River Ganga to the species are those generic for all large river turtles, including reduction of fish stock, as a result of overfishing, pollution, increase in river traffic, and sand-mining, among others



The issue in news

World AIDS Day is being observed on December 1 to raise public awareness about Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome, AIDS. The theme this year is ‘Ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic: resilience and impact.’


Main points

  • World AIDS Day is observed on the 1st of December, every year, since 1988. World AIDS Day was the first global health day to be celebrated.
  • AIDS is the abbreviation for Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. It is a chronic illness, which can also be potentially life-threatening. The disease is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus, HIV which affects the human immune system.

Important Info :

  • According to the WHO, In 2019, there were still 38 million people living with HIV infection. In 2019, 6.9 lakh people died from HIV-related causes and 1.7 million people were newly infected.
  • Since the inception of the National AIDS Control Program in 1992, India has done a commendable job in raising awareness and bringing down the number of HIV infections.
  • India is a signatory to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and has committed itself to achieving the target of ending the epidemic of AIDS by 2030.

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