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2nd November 2019 Current Affairs

1. Excavation by ASI in Gottiprolu, AP indicate it as Trade Centre of Early Historic Period

  • A 2000-year-old brick structure and a Vishnu sculpture were also unearthed from the site. ASI retrieved a moulded female terracotta figurine with two hands lifted upwards. Another interesting find is the small rectangular brick tank exposed near the inner lining of the curved brick structure.
  • Interesting pottery finds are the base of conical jars placed at the eastern side of the structure. Such conical jars are widely distributed in Tamil Nadu and considered to be imitated variety of Roman Amphorae jars.
  • Other major retrieved antiquities unearthed are copper and lead coins, iron spearhead, stone celts, terracotta beads, ear stud in semi-precious stone and hopscotches
  • Explorations conducted in and around Gottiprolu within a radius of 15 kilometres revealed important vestiges viz., fortified an early historic settlement at Puduru, Sunbrahmanya temple at Mallam, unique rock-cut laterite stepped well at Yakasiri, Vishnu temple at Tirumuru. Further, the entire seacoast on the east is dotted with various forms of antiquarian remains extending from Tamil Nadu and culturally linked with each other.
  • The two fortified townships within the gap of 15kms during early historic times indicate the significant strategic location was preferred by the early historic people for trade in the region keeping in view of the proximity of the sea, River and Lake (Pulicat).

2. Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO)

  • SFIO comes under the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA).
  • It is a multi-disciplinary organisation that investigates and guides prosecution in white-collar fraud requiring expertise in forensic auditing, corporate law, information technology, capital markets, taxation, and other allied fields.
  • It was established in 2003, based on recommendations by the Naresh Chandra Committee on Corporate Audit and Governance.
  • It received statutory powers under the Companies Act, 2013.
  • Cases are assigned to the SFIO based on the scale of financial misappropriation or extent of public interest that is at stake.

3. The Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) has released a report on Unemployment in India.

  • India’s unemployment rate in October rose to 8.5%, the highest level since August 2016.
  • Urban unemployment rate at 8.9%, is more than the rural unemployment rate of 8.3%.
  • Highest unemployment rate in Tripura and Haryana, at more than 20%.
  • Lowest in Tamil Nadu at 1.1%.
  • Rajasthan saw its unemployment rate double between September and October 2019.
  • CMIE findings are in line with the findings of the latest Periodic Labour Force Survey, which had estimated an unemployment rate of 6.1% between July 2017 and June 2018, the worst in 45 years. 
  • The data also comes on the back of other indicators showing a downturn in the economy, including the core sector output in September posting its worst contraction in at least 14 years.

4. Lymphatic filariasis– key facts, global concern on the disease, Triple-drug therapy

National Symposium on Lymphatic Filariasis was held in India on the theme ‘United to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis’.

Lymphatic filariasis:

  • Also called as elephantiasis, it is Caused by infection with parasitic worms living in the lymphatic system. The larval stages of the parasite (microfilaria) circulate in the blood and are transmitted from person to person by mosquitoes.
  • May Cause abnormal enlargement of body parts, and leading to severe disability and social stigmatization of those affected.
  • The parasites are transmitted by four main types of mosquitoes: Culex, Mansonia, Anopheles and Aedes.

 Triple drug therapy:

The World Health Organization (WHO) is recommending three drug treatment to accelerate the global elimination of lymphatic filariasis.

  • The treatment, known as IDA, involves a combination of ivermectin, diethylcarbamazine citrate and albendazole.
  • The plan is to administer these drugs for two consecutive years. The life of the adult worm is hardly four years, so it would die a natural death without causing any harm to the person.
  • India has missed earlier deadlines to eradicate the disease by 2015 and 2017.

The global deadline now is 2020 and the three drug approach may help the country get there.

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