Saga Dawa festival celebrated in Sikkim

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1 Saga Dawa festival celebrated in Sikkim

The festival of Saga Dawa  is being celebrated with joy and gaiety  on the occasion of  Buddha Purnima  in  Sikkim  on  23rd May 2024. Saga Dawa is also known as the  ‘ Triple Blessed Festival ‘ which falls on the 15th day of the fourth month of the Tibetan Buddhist calendar every year  . In Tibetan language, Saga means fourth and Dawa means month. It is the most sacred Buddhist festival, which commemorates the birth, enlightenment and Mahaparinirvana (passing away) of Buddha Shakyamuni. During this month, Buddhists of Sikkim offer prayers in various monasteries of the state.

2 Norway, Spain and Ireland to recognise Palestinian state

The governments of Norway, Spain and Ireland  have announced that they  will recognise the Palestinian state on 22 May 2024.  In a quick reaction,  the Israeli government  condemned the move, while the Palestinians welcomed it. The official recognition of an independent Palestinian state by the three countries will take effect on 28 May 2024. Norway was the first among the three European countries to announce recognition of the Palestinian state. Norway’s Prime Minister, Jonas Gahr Støre, said there can be no peace in the region without recognising the Palestinian state. Norway supports the two-state solution, which acknowledges the existence of an independent state of Palestine alongside the State of Israel. The historic 1993 Oslo Peace Accords between Israel and the Palestinian leadership acknowledge the need for a two-state solution.

3 Over 4000 Gangetic dolphins in India: Wildlife Institute of India

 According to a recent report by the Wildlife Institute of India ,  more than 4000 dolphins  have been found  in  the Ganga river basin . Of the river dolphins found in the Ganga river and its tributaries  , more than 2000  are found in Uttar Pradesh alone. In Uttar Pradesh, dolphins are mainly found in the Chambal river. According to experts, the significant increase in the number of dolphins in the Ganga river basins indicates that the pollution level of the river is declining and the government’s conservation efforts are paying off. The Ganges river dolphin is also known as the blind dolphin, Ganga susu or hihu. Its scientific name is Platanista gangetica. Historically, the Ganges dolphin was found in the Ganga-Brahmaputra-Meghna and Karnaphuli-Sangu river systems. Currently, the Ganges dolphin is found in parts of the Ganga-Brahmaputra-Barak river system of India, Karnali, Sapta Koshi and Narayani river systems of Nepal and Meghna, Karnaphuli and Sangu river systems of Bangladesh. Within India, it is found mainly in the mainstream of the Ganges River and its tributaries, the Ghaghara, Kosi, Gandak, Chambal, Rupnarayan, and Yamuna.

4 Calcutta High Court cancels all Other Backward Class (OBC) certificates issued in West Bengal since 2010

The Calcutta High Court  has  cancelled all the certificates of Other Backward Classes (OBC)   issued in  West Bengal since 2010.  On a PIL challenging the process of issuing OBC certificates, the High Court division bench declared the OBC list prepared after 2010 as illegal. The court directed the West Bengal Backward Classes Commission to prepare a new list of OBCs on the basis of the West Bengal Backward Classes Commission Act-1993. The court clarified that the services of those who are already in service or are beneficiaries of reservation or have been declared successful in the state’s recruitment process will not be affected by this decision. The court also clarified that the state government’s order classifying 66 classes of OBCs before 2010 will remain intact as it has not been challenged in the PILs. The PIL filed in 2011 said that in the OBC certificates issued after 2010, the West Bengal Backward Classes Commission Act has been ignored.

5 UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced to hold parliamentary elections before the scheduled time

British  Prime Minister  Rishi Sunak has announced parliamentary elections  on  July 4,  ahead of schedule   . He has said that this  is the right time to hold elections for the House of Commons, the lower house of Parliament in Britain  . The House of Commons has 650 members. He made this announcement after inflation in Britain fell to 2.3 percent, which is the lowest in the last three years.

6 Indian-origin Srinivas R Kulkarni to receive Shaw Prize

 On  May 21, the Shaw Prize Foundation  announced  the  Shaw Prize 2024 in Astronomy  to  Srinivas R Kulkarni, an Indian-origin professor of astronomy  in   the US . He is known for studying phenomena such as millisecond pulsars, gamma-ray bursts, supernovae. He  served as the director of Caltech Optical Observatories from 2006 to 2018. Srinivas R Kulkarni will be given this award at a ceremony organized in Hong Kong on 12 November 2024. Apart from Srinivas, Swie Le Thein and Stuart Arkin of America will receive this award for Biology. Peter Sarnak will be awarded the Shaw Prize for Mathematics Science. In 2002, Run Run Shaw of Hong Kong started the international award ‘Shaw Prize’. Every year this award is given in the fields of Astronomy, Biology and Mathematics Science.

7 Aarti, a pink e-rickshaw driver from Bahraich district of Uttar Pradesh, won the Amal Clooney Women’s Empowerment Award 2024

 Aarti , an 18-year-old  pink e-rickshaw driver from Bahraich district in  Uttar Pradesh   , won  the Amal Clooney Women’s Empowerment Award  on 22 May 2024.  The award was presented at the Prince’s Trust Awards in London  , where Aarti met King Charles III   at   Buckingham Palace . Aarti’s work focuses on the Pink E-Rickshaw initiative in India, which offers safe, eco-friendly transport for women with battery-powered rickshaws that reduce pollution. The award honours young women who have  overcome adversity and made a significant impact on their community . Aarti’s work in a male-dominated sector has improved the safety of women in her community, and she aims to secure a better future for her daughter. Aarti travelled to the Buckingham Palace reception in a pink rickshaw, a symbol of sustainable transport. The Prince’s Trust International, founded by King Charles, supports young people in 20 countries. Project Lehar, in collaboration with the Prince’s Trust International and the Aga Khan Foundation, introduced Aarti to the Pink E-Rickshaw scheme.

8 Tokyo Atacama Observatory World’s highest astronomical observatory

Recently, the Atacama Observatory (TAO)   of   the University of Tokyo has been inaugurated. It is now  the world’s highest astronomical observatory (height of 18,500 feet) ,  surpassing even the   famous  Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA), which is 16,570 feet high. The TAO telescope, with 6.5 meter optical-infrared capability,  is located at an altitude of 18,500 feet on  Mount Chajnantor  in  the Atacama Desert of Chile . Chajnantor is located in the Andes Mountains  near the Atacama Desert. The Atacama Desert is one of the best places on Earth for astronomical observations due to its topography, low humidity and clear skies, providing excellent conditions for studying the universe. The region’s topography, thin atmosphere and dry weather are ideal for observing almost the full spectrum of near-infrared wavelengths.

9 16 year old Kamya Karthikeyan conquered Everest

 On  23 May,  according to the Indian Navy,  16-year-old Kamya Karthikeyan  created   a new record by climbing  Mount Everest . She  became  the youngest Indian mountaineer  to conquer  the world’s highest peak  from  Nepal . She is a 12th class student at  Navy Children School  in Mumbai  . Kamya became the second youngest female mountaineer in the world to climb Mount Everest. Malavath Purna is the youngest woman to climb Mount Everest. She reached the top of Mount Everest at the age of 13. Jordan Romero is the youngest person to reach Mount Everest. On 25 May 2014, Jordan conquered Mount Everest at the age of 13.

10 India finishes first Asian Relay Championship with three medals

The Indian athletic contingent  finished   with  three medals – one gold and two silver – at  the first Asian Relay Championships.  The first Asian Relay Championships was held in  Bangkok, Thailand  on 20 and 21 May 2024. The championship was also a chance for Asian athletes to qualify for the 2024 Paris Summer Olympics,  scheduled to begin on 26 July 2024. 16 Asian countries, including China and Japan, participated in the Bangkok event. India’s  mixed relay team  won   the  gold medal in the 4x400m event .  With  a new national record of 3 minutes 14.1 seconds , the Indian team of Muhammad Ajmal, Jyotika Sri Dandi, Amoj Jacob and Subha Venkatesan  won the gold medal. The men’s team of Muhammad Anas Yahiya, T Santosh Kumar, Mizo Chacko Kurien and Arokia Rajiv won the silver medal behind the Sri Lankan team. The Indian women’s 4x400m relay team of Vithya Ramaraj, MR Poovamma, Rupal and Prachi Chaudhary won the silver medal by completing the race in 3 minutes 33.55 seconds. The gold medal was won by the Vietnamese women’s team while the bronze medal was won by the Japanese team. The Indian men’s and women’s 4x400m relay teams have already qualified for the Paris Olympics 2024. They secured Olympic quotas with their performance at the World Relay 24 held in Bahamas in May 2024.

11 World Para Athletics Championship: India’s Sachin Sarjerao player won gold medal in men’s shot put

 India’s  Sachin Sarjerao  has   won  the gold medal in men’s shot put  in  the  ongoing  World Para Athletics Championship in Japan . He also created an Asian record in the F-46 category  by throwing  16 meters 30 centimeters.  Another Indian player Dharambir won bronze in men’s club throw in the competition. He set an Asian record in the F-51 category by throwing 33 meters 31 centimeters. India has performed its best so far in the competition by winning a total of 12 medals including 5 gold, 4 silver and 3 bronze. China is at the first place in the points table with 48 medals.

12 Announcement of launching ‘Let’s Move India’ initiative to encourage athletes participating in Paris Olympic Games

The International Olympic Committee (IOC)  has  announced the launch of the  ‘ Let’s Move India ‘ initiative  to encourage athletes participating in the Paris Olympic Games . The aim is to involve people across the country in this campaign through social media. On the occasion of Olympic Day on  June 23,   regional schools can participate in this campaign and encourage their favorite players. The IOC has joined hands with Abhinav Bindra, India’s first individual Olympic gold medalist and member of the IOC Athletes’ Commission, and he will inspire schools across the country to join this campaign. The Paris Olympics will begin on July 26.

13 Tejas Shirse sets national record in hurdles race

 According to  the Sports Association of India (SAI)  on  May 23, Tejas Shirse  won   the  110 meter hurdles race . He set a new  national record at the World Athletics Continental Tour Meet 2024  being held in Finland  . Tejas Shirse completed the race in just 13.41 seconds. He  missed the Olympic qualification mark of  13.27 seconds  by 0.14 seconds. He  broke   Siddhant Thingalaya’s national record of 13.48 seconds in 2017. Jyoti Yaraji  won  the silver medal  in  the women’s 100 meters category  . She  equaled her own national record of 12.78 seconds  .