- Mission COVID Suraksha
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The Government of India has launched the stimulus package of Rs. 900 crore for the Mission COVID Suraksha, the Indian Covid-19 Vaccine Development Mission, which will help the development process of the vaccine candidates.
- The mission will help in accelerating the development of the COVID-19 vaccine. It will also introduce them in the market for the consideration of regulation authorities for introduction in public health systems to control the further spread of infection.
- According to the Department of Biotechnology, it will also ensure that the vaccine candidates are brought closure to introduction and licensure in the market.
- The DBT further informed that the mission focuses on the COVID-19 vaccine development with end-to-end focus from the preclinical stage through clinical development as well as manufacturing and regulatory facilitation.
- The DBT had earlier announced the programmes for vaccine development as well as other COVID-related solutions, but this mission will be dedicated purely to vaccine development.
- A total of 10 vaccine candidates have been supported by the Department of Biotechnology so far in both industry and academia.
- The mission’s aim will also be to establish clinical trial sites. It will also strengthen the central laboratories, existing immunoassay laboratories, and suitable facilities for production studies, animal studies, and other test facilities for supporting vaccine development.
- Under the mission, cell line development, capabilities for process development, manufacturing of Good Manufacturing Practices, clinical trials, and batches for animal toxicology will also be supported.
- The key portion will be the development of a suitable target product profile so that the vaccines that are being introduced through mission have characteristics that are applicable to India.
Clinical trials of drugs developed in India have to undergo all four phases of trials in India.
- Phase I or clinical pharmacology trials or “first in man” study.
- Phase II or exploratory trials.
- Phase III or confirmatory trials.
- Phase IV trials or post-marketing phase.
- Electrification of Railways
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Flagging off the first train on the electrified route from Dhigawara station in Alwar District, Rajasthan, the Minister of Railways recently inaugurated the newly electrified Dhigawara- Bandikui section of North Western Railway.
- Indian Railways has set a target to complete Electrification of its Broad gauge network by December 2023.
- More than 66% of the Broad gauge route has already been With 18065 km of electrification, Railways recorded a 371% increase in electrification during 2014-20 period as compared to 2009-2014.
- Benefits of Electrification:
- Seamless train operation by eliminating detention of trains
- enhancing line capacity due to higher speed and higher haulage capacity of electric locomotives.
- Improved signaling system
- cheaper and efficient compared with diesel traction as running trains on electric traction is 50% cheaper than diesel.
- Employment Generation
- Energy Security
- Energy Bill Savings
- Sustainability and Reduced carbon footprint
- Guru Nanak Jayanti
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The President of India has greeted the citizens on the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti.
It is a sacred festival of the Sikh community and is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, who is believed to be born on Poornima (full moon) of the Kartika (8 month of Hindu calendar), which falls on 30 of November in 2020.
Guru Nanak Dev
- Guru Nanak Dev Jayanti is observed to celebrate the birth of Guru Nanak Dev (1469-1539),who is first of the 10 Sikh Gurus and the founder of Sikhism.
- He advocated the ‘Nirguna’ (devotion to and worship of formless divine)form of bhakti.
- He rejected sacrifices, ritual baths, image worship, austerities and the scriptures of both Hindus and Muslims.
- He organised his followers into a community. He set up rules for congregational worship (Sangat)involving collective recitation.
- The fifth preceptor, Guru Arjan Dev,compiled Guru Nanak Dev’s hymns along with those of his four successors and other religious poets like Baba Farid, Ravidas (also known as Raidas) and Kabir in the Adi Granth Sahib.
- These hymns, called ‘Gurbani’,are composed in many languages.
- In the late seventeenth century the tenth preceptor, Guru Gobind Singh, includedthe compositions of the ninth guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur, and this scripture was called the Guru Granth Sahib.
- He Wrote compositions which were included in the Adi Granth, compiled by Guru Arjan (1563-1606), the fifth Sikh guru.
According to Indian philosophy, a Guru is the one who provides illumination, dispels doubt and shows the right path. In this context, the ideas of Guru Nanak Dev can help promote peace, equality and prosperity across the globe.
In 2019, the 550 birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev was celebrated and the Kartarpur corridor was inaugurated, which is an important step towards easing the tensions between India and Pakistan.