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February 27, 2021
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March 2, 2021
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1st March Current Affairs

RT-PCR tests: What it is and how it is done?

How RT-PCR is used for detecting Covid-19?

The causative agent for Covid19 is the SARS-CoV-2 virus. It is an RNA virus, that means it infiltrates a healthy cell to multiply and survive.

Thus, the RT-PCR test is for the identification of SARS-CoV-2 RNA. In this, the RNA is converted to DNA through a process called ‘reverse transcription’ for detecting viruses.

How it is carried out?

The SARS-CoV-2 RNA is generally detectable in respiratory specimens during the acute phase of infection.

For that upper and lower respiratory specimens (such as nasal, nasopharyngeal) are collected.

This sample is treated with several chemical solutions that remove substances, such as proteins and fats, and extracts only the RNA present in the sample.

Real-time RT-PCR setup usually goes through 35 cycles, which means that by the end of the process, around 35 billion new copies of the sections of viral DNA are created from each strand of the virus present in the sample.

As new copies of the viral DNA sections are built, the marker labels attach to the DNA strands and then release a fluorescent dye, which is measured by the machine’s computer and presented in real-time on the screen. The computer tracks the amount of fluorescence in the sample after each cycle. When the amount goes over a certain level of fluorescence, this confirms that the virus is present.

What is Carbon Watch— India’s 1st app to assess one’s carbon footprint?

In News:

Chandigarh became the first state or Union Territory in India to launch Carbon Watch.

What is Carbon Watch?

It is a mobile application to assess the carbon footprint of an individual.

What is Carbon Footprint?

Carbon footprint is the amount of greenhouse gases-especially carbon dioxide-released into the atmosphere by a particular human activity.

How does the app Carbon Watch work?

  • As a person downloads the application, they will need to fill details in four parts- Water, Energy, Waste Generation and Transport (Vehicular movement). In each category, they will be required to inform about their respective consumptions and waste generations.
  • With the mentioned information, the mobile application will automatically calculate the carbon footprint of the individual.
  • The application will also provide information such as the national and world average of the emission, and the individual’s level of emission generation.


The mobile application will suggest methods to reduce the carbon footprints. The application will suggest ways as per the information furnished by the individuals.

Motive behind designing this application?

Making the people Climate-Smart Citizens while making them capable of accessing their carbon footprint, along with providing them with steps to reduce it, is the motive behind the application.

‘One Nation One Standard’ Mission

In News:

Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Piyush Goyal has stressed on the need for ‘One Nation One Standard’ to bring uniformity and said labs testing in India should be of global standards.

The minister said this while reviewing the work of Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS).

What is it?

The ‘One Nation One Standard’ Mission was first deliberated in September, 2019.

The mission was envisioned on the line of ‘one nation, one ration card’ scheme in order to ensure quality products in the country.

The purpose is to converge multiple standards with the BIS which is a recognised national body for standardisation in India.

Need for:

  • The strength and character of a nation is often exemplified by the standards it sets for the quality of its products and services.
  • Bringing a national uniformity and standardization in all kinds of public procurement and tendering can be an immediate deliverable.
  • The uniform national standards will help in making it mandatory for more products.

About the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS):

BIS is the only national body that frames standards.

It works under the aegis of Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Government of India.

BIS is responsible for the harmonious development of the activities of standardization, marking and quality certification of goods and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.

The Bureau of Indian standards (BIS) Act 2016 establishes the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) as the National Standards Body of India.

The Act enables the Central Government to appoint any authority/agency, in addition to the BIS, to verify the conformity of products and services with the established standard and issue certificate of conformity.

There is a provision for repair or recall, of the products (bearing Standard Mark) that do not conform to the relevant Indian Standard.

What next in Puducherry as Narayanasamy loses trust vote?

In News:

Congress-led govt. falls in Puducherry.


Chief Minister V. Narayanasamy submitted his resignation to Lieutenant-Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan as it became apparent that he had lost the confidence of the House.

What next? Possible Scenarios:

In a probability, the opposition combine may stake claim to form government.

The LG may recommend President’s Rule in the state as elections are just around the corner.

The LG may ask Narayanasamy to continue as caretaker CM till elections are held.

What is President’s Rule in the Indian context?

Article 356 of the Constitution of India gives President of India the power to suspend state government and impose President’s rule of any state in the country if “he is satisfied that a situation has arisen in which the government of the state cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution”.

It is also known as ‘State Emergency’ or ‘Constitutional Emergency’.


Upon the imposition of this rule, there would be no Council of Ministers.

The state will fall under the direct control of the Union government, and the Governor will continue to head the proceedings, representing the President of India.

Parliamentary Approval and Duration:

A proclamation imposing President’s Rule must be approved by both the Houses of Parliament within two months from the date of its issue.

The approval takes place through simple majority in either House, that is, a majority of the members of the House present and voting.

Initially valid for six months, the President’s Rule can be extended for a maximum period of three years with the approval of the Parliament, every six months.

Report of the Governor:

Under Article 356, President’s Rule is imposed if the President, upon receipt of the report from the Governor of the State or otherwise, is satisfied that a situation has arisen in which the government of the State cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.


A proclamation of President’s Rule may be revoked by the President at any time by a subsequent proclamation.

Such a proclamation does not require parliamentary approval.