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  • The Election Commission has collaborated with IIT Madras to work on a new technology which will allow electors to vote from far away cities without going to the designated pollingstation of their respective constituencies.
  • Explaining the “block chain” technology involved in the project, Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Sandeep Saxena said the concept is a ‘two-way electronic voting system, in a controlled environment, on white-listed IP devices on dedicated internet lines, enabled with biometric devices and web camera’
  • He made it clear that voters will have to reach a each a designated venue during a pre-decided period of time to be able to use this facility. It does not mean voting from home, Saxena explained, which is ‘anytime-anywhere-any device’ and would require some more time and technological advancement.

India and Norway to work jointly towards mitigating marine plastic litter and micro-plastics; Issue Joint statement

  • India marks the beginning of super year of Biodiversity with the hosting of the 13th Conference of Parties (COP) of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), an environmental treaty under the aegis of United Nations Environment Programme, from 17th to 22nd February 2020 at Gandhinagar in Gujarat.
  • Union Environment Minister Shri Prakash Javadekar said that the year 2020 is a super year of Environment and will set the tone and tenor for the decade ahead. Highlighting the urgent nature of global environment issues including marine plastic litter, plastic pollution and microplastics.
  • On the side-lines of the COP, the Union Minister met a delegation led by Norwegian Minister of Climate and Environment, H.E. Mr.Sveinung Rotevan. India and Norway today agreed to jointly tackle concerns related to oceans, environment and climate matters.
  • Norway and India will explore areas of cooperation in forestry and linking the same with climate change.

WORLD

Coronavirus outbreak: India to send medical supplies to China

  • Indian Ambassador to China Vikram Misri expressed his solidarity with Chinese people and the government in the fight against the epidemic
  • In the wake of outbreak of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in China, India will soon send a consignment of medical supplies to aid and assist China in tackling this outbreak, the ambassador said.

SPORTS

BCCI grants Rs 2 crore to Indian Cricketers’ Association

  • The Indian Cricketers’ Association (ICA) granted Rs 2 crore by the BCCI to kick-start its operations.
  • The ICA, India’s first-ever players’ association formed as per recommendations of the Supreme Court-appointed Lodha panel, has been desperately seeking funds ever since its office bearers were elected in October last year.

IMPORTANT DAYS

World pangolin day: February 15

  • Every year third Saturday of February was observed as pangolin day

NEWS HINTS

  • The SuperCam on the Mars 2020 rover examines rocks and soils with a camera, laser and spectrometers to seek organic compounds that could be related to past life on Mars. It can identify the chemical and mineral makeup of targets as small as a pencil point from a distance of more than 20 feet (7 meters).
  • The Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) with the Ministry of Women and Child Development (MoWCD) will host the first National Organic Food Festival in New Delhi between February 21 to February 23, 2020
  • Theme: Unleashing India’s Organic Market Potential.
  • Reading of Preamble to become mandatory in Maharashtra schools.