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- Scientists in China will perform a genetic editing trial on humans, making this the first such attempt in the world. The editing trial seeks to find a cure for lung cancer by injecting patients with cells that have been modified using the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technique. Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) was named the 2015 Breakthrough of the Year by Science, the U.S. Journal as it allows scientists to selectively edit genome parts and replace them with new DNA stretches. Cas9 is an enzyme that can edit the DNA and this can alter the genetic patterns through genome modification.
- Indian-American Braj B Kachru, a well-known linguist passed away in Illinois. He coined the term “World English” and was famously known for his studies on Kashmiri. He is the author of the acclaimed book The Alchemy of English: The Spread, Functions and Models of Non-Native Englishes.
- Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda is touted to be the next Prime Minister of Nepal as his was the only name on the ballot upon the expiry of the deadline for nominations. He is the leader of Nepal’s Maoist party. K.P. Sharma Oli had resigned last week just before he faced a no-confidence motion in the Nepal Parliament.
- The Rajya Sabha approved the Institutes of Technology (Amendment) Bill, 2016 which means that IITs will soon come up in Jammu, Tirupati, Palakkad, Goa, Dharwad and Bhilai.
- According to a government data report, 3,068 non-governmental organisations received a funding of over ₹22,000 crore in the period of 2014-2015. This data was presented as a response to a question posed in the Parliament.
- The Dentists (Amendment) Bill, 2016 was passed by the Rajya Sabha with voice vote. This Bill seeks to amend the Dentists Act, 1948 and will also replace the Dentists (Amendment) Ordinances, 2016. The main feature of the Bill is the uniform entrance examination for all dental educational universities
- Zabiuddin Ansari aka Abu Jundal was sentenced to life imprisonment at the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court for his involvement in the Aurangabad arms haul case of 2006. Abu Jundal is also reported to be the handler of the 26/11 terror attacks in Mumbai in 2008. The 2006 Aurangabad case involved a conspiracy among the 22 accused who procured arms and explosives to avenge the 2002 Gujarat riots by assassinating political leaders.
- The State Government of West Bengal passed the proposal to rename the State as “Bengal”. The formation of West Bengal can be traced back to the Partition in 1947 when the Bengal province was split into two parts – West Bengal that remained with India and East Bengal that was a part of Pakistan.
- The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has released a set of guidelines that are to be followed for testing AYUSH (Ayurvedic, Yoga, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy) drugs. This is an attempt to bring the research on AYUSH drugs closer to the practices in Western medicine.
- National Tourism Awards for the year 2014-15 were presented for the various sectors in the travel, tourism and hospitality industry. A few of the major awards presented are as follows:
- The Best State for Comprehensive Development of Tourism was presented to Madhya Pradesh.
- Gujarat won the Best Film Promotion Friendly State.
- Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport won the Best Airport award.
- Warangal in Telangana won the Best Heritage City
- ‘Wall of Wishes’ was inaugurated at the India Gate lawns in New Delhi to celebrate the Olympic mood in the country. The Rio Olympics 2016 is going to be held from 5th August to 21st August this year and India is sending its largest ever contingent ever in its participation history at the Olympics.
- The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has appointed a four-member panel to interact with the R.M. Lodha Committee to resolve the complexities that arose after the Supreme Court passed its verdict. The panel will be headed by Retired Justice Markandey Katju.