1. UGC asks colleges to allow students to take up online internships
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has asked colleges to allow students to take up online or work from home internships and can also consider delaying the start date of internship or cutting short the internship period to strike balance internships and academic assignments. The technical education regulator AICTE too has started offering 49 free e-learning courses online to ensure students gain additional skills and knowledge and improve their employability prospects even while at home.
2. India’s GDP falls 15% in April as the nation’s service activity hits record low
The service sector of India recorded its largest contraction in business activity and new orders. Post the nationwide lockdown businesses throughout the nation came down. As mentioned in the Reuters, the Nikkei/IHS Markit Services Purchasing Managers’ Index dived down to an eye-popping 5.4 in April from 49.3 in the month of March, an unprecedented contraction since the survey first began over 14 years ago.
This has instilled fear of a deep recession in India.
3. Sports Ministry has invited nominations for Nation Sports Awards through email
The Sports Ministry of India has invited nominations for nation sports awards by sending out emails during the COVID-19 nationwide lockdown. The nominations have been invited for awards that include the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Arjuna, Dronacharya, Dhyan Chand, and Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puraskar awards. The last date for applying is June 3 till 11.59 p.m. The application is to be sent in soft copy format only, considering the current situation.
4. China launches its largest carrier rocket spaceship successfully
China has successfully launched its largest carrier rocket, that carried a new-generation spacecraft. The Long March-5B carrier rocket took off from the Wenchang Space Launch Center in the southern island province of Hainan at 1800 local time (1000 GMT). As reported by Reuters, in March China had said that it aimed was aiming to launch an experimental spacecraft without a crew to shuttle astronauts to its future space station and for future manned space exploration.
5. India offers land of 4.5 lakhs hectares double the size of Luxembourg to firms leaving China
India is in the process of developing a large land pool of 4,61,589 hectares that is going to be double the size of Luxembourg for the purpose of attracting businesses moving out of China to set up business in India. The above-mentioned hectares of land include existing industrial land situated in the Indian states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Andhra Pradesh.
6. Have isolated coronavirus antibody in ‘significant breakthrough’: Israel
Israel is said to have isolated a key coronavirus antibody at its main biological research laboratory. It has called this a significant breakthrough in developing a possible treatment for the coronavirus pandemic. The “monoclonal neutralizing antibody” developed at the Israel Institute for Biological Research (IIBR) “can neutralize it (the disease-causing coronavirus) inside carriers’ bodies,” said Israel’s Defence Minister Naftali Bennett in a statement.
7. Apple to host virtual Worldwide Developers Conference from June
From 22nd June, Apple is going to initiate holding its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, only online this time. The conference is going to be free for all developers on the Apple Developer app and website. “WWDC20 will be our biggest yet, bringing together our global developer community of more than 23 million in an unprecedented way for a week in June to learn about the future of Apple platforms,” said Apple’s senior vice-president of Worldwide Marketing, Phil Schiller. Apple WWDC will also be hosting a Swift Student Challenge this year, where student developers will be given a chance to demonstrate their own Swift playgrounds.
8. Whatsapp chatbot for combatting COVID-19 misinformation launched
WhatsApp very recently launched a chatbot named as IFCN chatbot to curb the spread of misinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic. The bot is developed by the Poynter Institute’s International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN). The IFCN chatbot on WhatsApp will allow global citizens to verify whether the messages they receive about COVID-19 is true or false. With the help of the chatbot, the users can see whether the information received by them has been rated false by the professional fact-checker. To start using the chatbot, save the number +1 (727) 2912606 and send a text “Hi” from your WhatsApp to start the chatbot. The other way of starting the chatbot is by clicking on poy.nu/ifcnbot
The chatbot currently is available only in the English language but is soon to be made available in Hindi, Spanish and other languages.
9. Tennis champion Nadal says, 2020 is “practically lost” for tennis.
Tennis Grand slam champion Rafael Nadal has said that the 2020 tennis season “has been practically lost”. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Wimbledon has already been canceled, while the French Open is postponed until Sept. 20-Oct 4. “I would sign up right now just to being ready for 2021,” said Nadal in one of his interviews. “Sadly, I’m not going to lie to you, the feeling is that we are losing a year of our lives, and at 33, 34 years old, that is more valuable than at 20, when you have more time ahead of you,” he added.
10. Pharma giant, Gilead in talks with Indian drugmakers to make remdesivir
US pharma giant, Gilead Sciences Inc is in discussions with chemical and drug manufacturers in India to produce its experimental COVID-19 drug remdesivir. The company, however, has not disclosed details about the companies it is in talks with. Gilead received the US Food and Drug Administration’s emergency use authorization last week for using the drug as a treatment against COVID-19 after it showed speedy recovery of COVID-19 patients in the US
11. Security forces in J&K catch a terrorist carrying reward of Rs 12 lakhs.
Terrorist, Hizbul Mujahideen Commander Riyaz Naikoo was trapped and killed in an encounter by the security forces in Jammu & Kashmir in the Pulwama district. The terrorist was on the run since the past 8 years carried a reward of Rs 12 lakh on his head. He was one of the most dreaded Hizbul Commanders operating in Kashmir and a strong supporter of Pakistan. The terrorist first lifted a gun at the age of 33 before which he was a mathematics teacher in a private school.
12. Actress Meera Kapoor’s father robbed at knifepoint in Delhi.
Priyanka Chopra Jonas’s uncle and Meera Chopra’s father was robbed in the capital state of India by two men on the bike at knifepoint while he was out for a walk in Model Town area of New Delhi. The actor gave out this information in a tweet through her twitter handle. “@DelhiPolice my dad was taking a walk in #policecolony. Two guys came in a scooter, showed a knife and snatched his phone. This is how safe you claim Delhi to be. @ArvindKejriwal @CPDelhi,” the actor tweeted. Her tweet was followed by another tweet that read, “Thanks @DcpNorthDelhi for such quick action. Makes me proud when we feel protected by our police department. It’s never about what has been snatched but protecting our elders is most important! Respect @DelhiPolice,”