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02 May Current Affairs

1.6 Billion Risk Losing Jobs: ILO

In News:

Recently, the International Labour Organization (ILO) has warned that nearly half of the entire global workforce is in immediate danger of having their livelihoods destroyed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Key Points:

Informal workers at risk: Due to Covid-19 lockdown, three-quarters of workers (some 1.6 billion people) engaged in the informal economy have suffered massive damage to their capacity to earn a living.

Further, without alternative income, these workers and their families would have no means to survive.

The global workforce is 3.3 billion people, of which more than two billion people work in the informal economy.

Hard-hit Sectors: The worst-affected sectors would be accommodation and food services, manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, and real estate and business activities.

Suggestions:

The ILO calls for urgent, targeted and flexible measures to support workers and businesses those in the informal economy and others who are vulnerable.

Measures for economic reactivation should follow a job-rich approach, backed by stronger employment policies and institutions, better-resourced and comprehensive social protection systems.

International coordination on stimulus packages and debt relief measures will also be critical to making recovery effective and sustainable.

International labour standards, which already enjoy tripartite consensus, can provide a framework.

Informal Sector:

The informal sector, also known as the unorganised sector, is the part of any economy that is neither taxed nor monitored by any form of government.

The informal sector provides critical economic opportunities for the poor.

The informal sector is largely characterized by skills gained outside of a formal education, easy entry, a lack of stable employer-employee relationships, and a small scale of operations.

Unlike the formal economy, the informal sector’s components are not included in GDP computations.

The government of India has launched Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan Yojana as a social security for the unorganised workers.

It is a voluntary and contributory pension scheme.

Covid-19 Related Disease

In News:

Recently, the Paediatric Intensive Care Society (PICS) of the United Kingdom has observed an apparent rise in the number of children suffering from a multi-system inflammatory state. Doctors believe that it could be related to Covid-19.

Key Points:

  1. a) Multi-system Inflammatory State:

It is a rare illness that causes inflammation of the blood vessels leading to low blood pressure. It affects the entire body as it causes a build-up of fluid in the lungs and other organs.

Patients suffering from it require intensive care to support the lungs, heart and other organs.

Symptoms:

Abdominal and gastrointestinal symptoms.

Cardiac inflammation.

Overlapping symptoms of Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) and Kawasaki disease as well.

  1. b) Toxic Shock Syndrome:

It is a rare condition which is caused by certain bacteria which enter the body and release harmful toxins.

It could be fatal if not treated in time.

Symptoms: High temperature, headache, sore throat, cough, diarrhea, dizziness or fainting, difficulty breathing and confusion.

  1. c) Kawasaki Disease:

It is an acute inflammatory disease of the blood vessels and usually occurs in children below the age of five.

The inflammation in the coronary arteries that are responsible for supplying blood to the heart results in enlargement or in the formation of aneurysms (swelling of the wall of an artery), leading to heart attacks.

Symptoms: Fever, rashes, redness of the cornea, red and cracked lips, a red tongue and lymph node enlargement of the neck.

Relation to Covid-19:

Only a few children with the symptoms of the multi-system inflammatory state tested positive for Covid-19. So, it remains unclear if and how the inflammatory syndrome is related to the virus.

It is suggested by some doctors that the illness may be a post-infection inflammatory response, where the immune system gets over-stimulated.

Global Report on Internal Displacement 2020

In News:

The ‘Global Report on Internal Displacement 2020’ revealed that conflict, violence and disasters led to 50.8 million internal displacement across the world at the end of 2019.

Details:

Internal Displacement refers to the forced movement of people within the country they live in due to conflict, violence, development projects, disasters and climate change.

Report is published by Norwegian Refugee Council’s Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC).

Key Highlights:

1) Displacement due to conflict:

All regions are affected by conflict displacement, but it is highly concentrated in a few countries. Of the global total of 45.7 million people displaced due to conflict and violence in 2019, three-quarters or 34.5 million, were in just 10 countries

Top Five countries with highest displacement by conflict and violence are: Syria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso and Afghanistan.

2) Displacement related to disasters:

Nearly 1,900 disasters sparked 24.9 million new displacements across 140 countries and territories in 2019.

This is the highest figure recorded since 2012.

Out of the 24.9 million displaced due to disasters, 23.9 were weather-related, and “much of this displacement took place in form of pre-emptive evacuations”.

Noted efforts to prevent and respond to internal displacement:

Countries such as Niger and Somalia improved their policy frameworks on internal displacement.

Others, including Afghanistan, Iraq and the Philippines,  incorporated displacement in their development plans, in their reporting on the Sustainable Development Goals, or when updating risk management strategies in line with the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

The combination of official monitoring of disaster displacement in the Philippines with mobile phone tracking data and social media analysis helped improve planning for shelters, reconstruction and long term urban recovery.

Improvements in the quantity and quality of data available also enabled better reporting and analysis, which in turn informed more effective responses and risk mitigation measures.

Data Related to India:

Nearly five million people were displaced in India in 2019.

It is the highest in the world.

Reasons: The displacements were prompted by increased hazard intensity, high population and social and economic vulnerability.

Southwest Monsoon: More than 2.6 million people suffered displacement due to the southwest monsoon. 2019 was the seventh warmest year since 1901 and the monsoon was the wettest in 25 years.

Cyclones Fani and Bulbul also led to huge displacements.

Evacuations save lives, but many evacuees had their displacement prolonged because their homes had been damaged or destroyed.

Over 19,000 conflicts and violence also prompted the phenomenon.

Political and electoral violence, especially in Tripura and West Bengal, led to the displacement of more than 7,600 people.

New List of Names of Tropical Cyclones

In News:

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has released a list with the names of 169 tropical cyclones that are likely to emerge over the north Indian Ocean, including the Bay of Bengal and the Indian Ocean.

Details:

The report was adopted by WMO/ESCAP Panel on Tropical Cyclones (PTC) with consensus in April, 2020.

The current list has a total of 169 names including 13 names each for 13 WMO/ESCAP member countries.

Key Points:

IMD, one of the six Regional Specialised Meteorological Centres (RSMC) in the world, is mandated to issue advisories and name tropical cyclones in the north Indian Ocean region.

The advisories are issued to 13 member countries under WMO/ESCAP Panel including Bangladesh, India, Iran, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

Benefits of naming: Naming of tropical cyclones helps the scientific community, disaster managers, media and general masses to :

1) Identify each individual cyclone.

2) Create awareness of its development.

3) Remove confusion in case of simultaneous occurrence of tropical cyclones over a region.

4) Remember a tropical cyclone easily,

5) Rapidly and effectively disseminate warnings to a much wider audience.

Naming of the Tropical Cyclones:

The WMO/ESCAP Panel on Tropical Cyclones (PTC) at its 27th Session held in 2000 in Muscat, Oman agreed in principle to assign names to the tropical cyclones in the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea.

The naming of the tropical cyclones over the north Indian Ocean commenced from September 2004.

This list contained names proposed by then eight member countries of WMO/ESCAP PTC, viz., Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

The requirement for a fresh list of tropical cyclones including representation from five new member countries: Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen (total 13 member countries) was tabled during the 45th session of WMO/ESCAP, held in September 2018. The session was hosted by Oman.

 

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