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14th February Current Affairs

Geomagnetic storm

(GS-I: Important Geophysical phenomenon)

In News:

Recently, Elon Musk’s Starlink has lost 40 satellites that were caught in a geomagnetic storm a day after they were launched.

However, these satellites have not created any space debris as the satellites were designed to burn up on reentry into the Earth’s atmosphere.

What are Geomagnetic Storms?

Geomagnetic storms are caused when events such as solar flares can send higher than normal levels of radiation towards Earth. This radiation interacts with the Earth’s magnetic field causing a geomagnetic storm.

Causes:

The disturbance that drives the magnetic storm may be a solar coronal mass ejection (CME) or (much less severely) a co-rotating interaction region (CIR), a high-speed stream of solar wind originating from a coronal hole.

Effects of Geomagnetic storms:

Effects from the geomagnetic storm can range from the appearance of auroras or the northern and southern lights to disruptions in communications systems due to high radiation. This would make it difficult to communicate with others on Earth.

Classification of Geomagnetic storms:

Geomagnetic storms are classified according to a scale that measures the effect that storms will have.

At its safest level, a G1 storm affects power grids by causing weak fluctuations, minor impacts on satellite operations, and causes the northern and southern lights to occur.

At its most extreme, G5, there would be voltage control problems with some grid system collapses or blackouts, radio waves wouldn’t be able to travel for one to two days, low-frequency radio would be out for hours, and the auroras would be able to be seen at lower latitudes than usual.

Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission

(GS-II: Issues related to Health)

In News:

The National Health Authority has announced the integration of its flagship Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission with the Aarogya Setu app, allowing users to create the 14-digit unique Ayushman Bharat Health Account numbers from the app.

About the Mission:

The Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission will provide a digital health ID to the people who will hold their health records.

Features of the Mission:

It is a digital health ecosystem under which every Indian citizen will now have unique health IDs, digitised health records with identifiers for doctors and health facilities.

The scheme will come under the Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana.

It comprises six key building blocks — HealthID, DigiDoctor, Health Facility Registry, Personal Health Records, e-Pharmacy and Telemedicine.

The National Health Authority has been given the mandate to design, build, roll-out and implement the mission in the country.

The core building blocks of the mission is that the health ID, DigiDoctor and Health Facility Registry shall be owned, operated and maintained by the Government of India.

Private stakeholders will have an equal opportunity to integrate and create their own products for the market. The core activities and verifications, however, remain with the government.

Under the Mission, every Indian will get a Health ID card that will store all medical details of the person including prescriptions, treatment, diagnostic reports and discharge summaries.

Health ID is a randomly generated 14 digit number used for the purposes of uniquely identifying persons, authenticating them, and threading their health records (only with their informed consent) across multiple systems and stakeholders.

The citizens will be able to give their doctors and health providers one-time access to this data during visits to the hospital for consultation.

What was the need for this mission?

The mission aims to liberate citizens from the challenges of finding the right doctors, seeking appointment, payment of consultation fee, making several rounds of hospitals for prescription sheets, among several others and will empower people to make an informed decision to avail the best possible healthcare.

World Food Programme

(GS-III: Food security related issues)

In News:

India signed an agreement with the United Nation’s World Food Programme (WFP) for the distribution of 50,000 MT of wheat that it has committed to sending Afghanistan as part of a humanitarian assistance.

Details:

According to the MoU, the wheat will be taken through Pakistan to the Afghan border crossing and handed over to WFP officials in Kandahar beginning February 22.

The wheat will eventually be divided into five batches of 10,000 MT, to be distributed across the country on approximately 200 trucks that are run by WFP.

What is UN WFP?

The World Food Programme (WFP) is the food assistance branch of the United Nations and the world’s largest humanitarian organization addressing hunger and promoting food security.

Born in 1961, the WFP strives to eradicate hunger and malnutrition, with the ultimate goal in mind of eliminating the need for food aid itself.

It is a member of the United Nations Development Group and part of its Executive Committee.

WFP food aid is also directed to fight micronutrient deficiencies, reduce child mortality, improve maternal health, and combat disease, including HIV and AIDS.

What is “World Hunger Map”?

Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing arm of Alibaba is working with WFP to develop digital “World Hunger Map”.

The map will help to monitor global hunger and operations to end scourge by 2030 which is one of UN’s key Sustainable Development goals.

It also aims to boost efficiency of interventions and shorten emergency response times.

Sri Madhvacharya

(GS-I: Indian Art and Culture)

In News:

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi recently paid his obeisances to Sri Madhvacharya on the occasion of Madhva Navami.

About Sri Madhvacharya:

Shri Madhvacharya was born near Udupi. He was born in 1238, on the auspicious day of Vijayadashami, and he was named Vasudeva.

He was the third of the trinity of philosophers who influenced Indian thoughts after the ages of the Vedas and Puranas (the other two being Shankaracharya and Ramanujacharya).

He propounded the philosophy of Dwaita or Dualism.

It was Achyutapreksha who gave him the title ‘Madhva’ by which he was more famously known.

Literary works: He wrote various texts that detailed his philosophy which he called Tattvavada, or as it is more popularly known, Dvaita. Some of his works were the Gita Bhashya, Brahma Sutra Bhashya, Anu Bhashya, Karma Nirnaya, and Vishnu Tattva Nirnaya.

About Dvaita philosophy:

The basic tenet of Dvaita philosophy is the refutation of the Mayavada of Sri Shankara. Dvaitha emphasizes that the world is real and not just an illusion.

The soul is bound to this world through ignorance.

The way for the soul to release itself from this bondage is to seek the grace of Sri Hari.

To reach Sri Hari, one has to practice Bhakthi, there is no other way.

To practice Bhakthi, one needs to meditate.

To meditate, one needs to clear the mind and attain detachment by studying the sacred texts.