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GKToday : 26th May Current Affairs - Daily GK Updates

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1. NASA’s WFIRST Hubble Telescope Renamed

– NASA has renamed its next-generation space telescope- Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST), after the space agency’s first chief astronomer Nancy Grace Roman.

– Nancy Grace is considered as the Mother of Hubble Space Telescope, which had launched 30 years ago.

– She passed away in 2018, leaving a tremendous scientific legacy behind. The Hubble Space Telescope is currently the world’s most powerful and productive space telescope.

– The Roman Space Telescope is expected to help NASA gain a better understanding of space and help the space agency unravel the long-standing astronomical mysteries, such as the force behind the universe’s expansion and also boost its search for distant planets beyond our solar system.

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NASA – National Aeronautics and Space Administration – Formed: 1958;

Headquarter: Washington, D.C., United States


2. Locusts Swarms Attack in India

– Locusts have entered Rajasthan in India through Pakistan in large swarms in search of crops and greenery to satisfy their hunger.

– Desert Locusts are one of the most dangerous migratory pests. This is the worst ever locusts attack in last three decades.

– The locusts’ swarms began from Iran in 2019, migrating to Pakistan and now have entered India in Rajasthan, Punjab, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.

– While India is already battling the consequences of novel Coronavirus on its economy, locust attack or plague could further devastate its agricultural economy and risk India’s food security.

– The Locust Warning Organisation has suggested for the use of drones for sprinkling chemicals in Rajasthan to kill the locust.



– The Desert Locust is one of the species of grasshopper family and is known as Schistocerca gregaria (Forskal) scientifically.

– LIFE SPAN: 90 days.

– LOCUST PLAGUE: When these locusts’ swarms attack the crops and disturb agricultural economy, it is known as locust plague.

– They move in swarms and each swarm consists of 150 million locusts in every square kilometer and they are highly mobile.

– They are known for damaging and consuming everything in their path especially all green areas. A locust swarm in one square km can destroy crops meant for consumption by over 35,000 people in a day.


3. WHO suspends clinical trial of Hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19

The World Health Organization has decided to temporarily suspend the clinical trial of Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) on COVID-19 patients.

The decision follows an observational study published in the Lancet Medical Journal regarding the Hydroxychloroquine drug and its effect on hospitalized COVID-19 patients. The authors of the estimated higher mortality rate among coronavirus patients when the drug is used alone or with a macrolide.

WHO had earlier initiated a Solidarity Trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of four drugs and their combinations against COVID-19. One among the four drugs was Hydroxychloroquine.

WHO Director General reiterated that the concern is only related to the use of Hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine on COVID-19 patients, as these drugs are generally accepted as safe for use in patients with autoimmune diseases or malaria.

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WHO – Founded: 7 April 1948; Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland


4. India’s steel output declines by 65 percent

– India’s crude steel output declined by 65 percent to 3.13 million tonnes in April 2020, as per a report released by the World Steel Association on May 24, 2020. In comparison, the report stated that India had produced 9.02 million tonnes of steel in April 2019.

– The complete lockdown brought a halt to all economic activities, besides essential services, which impacted the production, demand and supply of steel in India.

– As per the World Steel report, the global steel output declined by 13 percent, from 157.67 million tonnes in April 2019 to 137.09 million tonnes in April 2020.

– India had become the world’s second-largest steel-producing country in January 2019, replacing Japan. India is only behind China, which is the world’s largest producer of crude steel.


5. Govt appoints PK Nair as envoy to Niger

– The government announced the appointment of Prem K Nair as Indian Ambassador to Niger.

– Mr PK Nair is currently posted as Consul General of India to Hambantota

– Niger is a landlocked country in West Africa named after the Niger River.

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  • Niger – Capital: Niamey; Currency: West African CFA franc


6. Indian Army Major to be honoured with UN Military Gender Advocate award

– Major Suman Gawani, an Indian Army officer and woman peacekeeper who has served with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), has been selected for the prestigious United Nations Military Gender Advocate of the Year Award (2019).

– This is the first time that an Indian peacekeeper is being given the UN Military Gender Advocate award. She has been awarded for her outstanding contribution to peacekeeping efforts in the UNMISS.

– Created in 2016, the award honours the dedication and effort of individual military peacekeepers in promoting the UN principles on Women, Peace and Security in peace operations as nominated by Heads and Force Commanders of peace operations.