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Prelim Bits 03-02-2023 | UPSC Daily Current Affairs

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February 03, 2023

Sickle Cell Anaemia

The Government of India plans to launch a mission to eliminate sickle cell anaemia by 2047.

  • Sickle cell disease (SCD) is an inherited group of blood disorders that is genetic in nature.
  • Transmission - It is usually transferred from the parents to the child during birth i.e. both parents can be carriers of SCDs.
  • Characteristics - A modification in the shape of the red blood cell into a crescent shape.
  • Sickle cell Anaemia - The misshapen cells lack plasticity and can block small blood vessels, impairing blood flow.
  • The sickle cells die prematurely, resulting in a chronic lack of red blood cells (anaemia), often called sickle-cell anaemia.
  • Effects - This condition leads to poor blood oxygen levels and blood vessel blockages.
  • Chronic acute pain syndromes, severe bacterial infections, and necrosis (tissue death).
  • Symptoms - Babies who are born with sickle cell anaemia might not show symptoms for many months.
  • Extreme tiredness, fussiness and painfully swollen hands and feet and jaundice.
  • Treatment - Medication, blood transfusions and rarely a bone-marrow transplant are done.
  • Bone marrow or stem cell transplantation which comes with several risks can be a cure.

References

  1. IE - What is sickle cell anaemia?
  2. WHO - Sickle Cell Disease

Additional Surveillance Mechanism

The National Stock Exchange (NSE) placed 3 of Adani Group companies under the short-term additional surveillance mechanism (ASM).

  • The Additional Surveillance Mechanism (ASM) was introduced on March 26, 2018 with the intention to protect investors from market volatility and unusual changes in share price.
  • The additional surveillance is part of SEBI and the Exchanges’ initiative to enhance market integrity and safeguard the interest of investors.
  • Criteria - The surveillance concerns are based on objective parameters viz. Price / Volume variation, Volatility etc.
  • The shortlisting of securities for placing in ASM is based on criteria jointly decided by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and exchanges.
  • The securities are shortlisted and reviewed under 2 frameworks
    1. Long-term ASM Frameworks
    2. Short-term ASM Frameworks
  • Trading in stocks under the short-term ASM framework will require investors to pay 100% upfront margin even for intraday trading.
  • Purpose - An ASM shortlisting signals to investors that the stocks have seen unusual activity.
  • The shortlisting of securities under ASM is purely on account of market surveillance and it is not an adverse action against the concerned company / entity.

References

  1. IE - What is additional surveillance mechanism (ASM)?

Asiatic Black Bear

The Kashmir Valley has bucked the trend of Asiatic black attacks on humans rarely reported throughout the animal’s global range.

  • Asiatic black bear (Ursus thibetanus) is also as Moon bear.
  • The Asiatic black bear has 7 subspecies, out of which we find the Himalayan Black Bear (Ursus thibetanus laniger) subspecies in India.
  • Features - The Asiatic Black Bear has a coat of smooth black fur and can be distinguished by a V of white fur on its chest.

asiaticblackbear

  • Distribution - The Asiatic black bear occupies a narrow band from south-eastern Iran to Myanmar, across the foothills of the Himalayas.
  • In India - Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Sikkim, and the union territory of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).
  • Diet - Omnivorous. Mainly comprises of fruits.
  • Threats - Hunting, poaching, habitat loss and climate change.
  • In Kashmir Valley, the conversion of the bear’s natural habitat to orchards and farmlands is a major threat.
  • Conservation 

 asiaticblackbeariucn

References

  1. The Hindu - Calm Asiatic black bears on a short fuse in Kashmir
  2. IUCN - Asiatic Black Bear
  3. WWF - Asiatic Black Bear

Irula Community

Mr.Vadivel Gopal and Mr.Masi Sadaiyan of the Irula community, this year’s Padma Shri recipients, have been part of Irula Snake Catchers’ Industrial Cooperative Society.

  • Irula community is a particularly vulnerable tribal group (PVTG).
  • Irula (people of darkness) inhabit mostly in the northern TN districts and some parts of Kerala and Karnataka.
  • Researches have shown that the tribe have their origin from ethnic groups of and Australia.
  • They speak Irula language that is closely related to Dravidian languages like Tamil and Kannada.
  • Irulas has been traditionally catching snake and rat, but also work as labourers.
  • The expertise of Irulas about snakes and snake venom is legendary.
  • The tribespeople know the places where snakes hide from experience and instinct.
  • They even can find snakes by their track, smell and droppings.
  • The Irula Snake Catchers’ Industrial Cooperative Society is one of the major anti-snake venom (ASV) producers in the country.

irula

References

  1. The Hindu - Padma Shri for Irula Bravehearts Vadivel and Sadaiyan

Circuit Breaker in Stock Market

Adani Group companies’ stocks have been in free fall, routinely hitting the lower circuits, since the release of Hindenburg Research report.

  • The term "circuit breaker refers" to an emergency-use regulatory measure that temporarily halts trading on an exchange.
  • Circuit breakers function automatically by stopping trading when prices hit predefined levels in exchanges around the world.

In June 2001, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) implemented index-based market-wide circuit breakers.

  • Reasons - Circuit breakers are triggered to stop the sell-off by stockholders.
  • They curb panic-selling of stocks and prevent markets from crashing.
  • Effectively, circuit-breakers cap how much the value of a stock can fall in a single day/trading session.
  • These circuit breakers bring about a coordinated trading halt in all equity and equity derivative markets nationwide, when triggered.
  • Method - The Stock Exchange computes the Index circuit breaker limits on a daily basis based on the previous day’s closing level of the index.
  • This index-based market-wide circuit breaker system applies at all 3 stages of the index movement, at 10%, 15% and 20%.

circuitbreaker

References

  1. IE - What is a circuit breaker in the stock market?
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