World No-Tobacco Day (WNTD) is observed every year across the world on 31 May.
This day highlights the health risks associated with consumption all forms of tobacco and advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption.
WNTD 2015, calls on countries to work together to end the illicit trade of tobacco products which is a major global concern including for health, legal and economic, governance and corruption.
Each year, global tobacco epidemic kills nearly around 6 million people of which more than 6 lakh are non-smokers who die from breathing second-hand smoke.
Earlier, Uttar Pradesh Food Safety and Drug Administration (UP FDA) had asked Nestle India to withdraw a batch of Maggi noodles from the market after they had found that it contained high level of lead and Monosodium glutamate (MSG), a taste enhancer.
During these routine tests of UP FDA, it was found that packets of instant noodles of 2014 batch contained high lead concentration of 17.2 parts per million (ppm) which is nearly seven times more that the permissible limit of 0.01 ppm to 2.5 ppm.
Monosodium glutamate is a kind of amino acid. It occurs naturally in many agricultural products. Monosodium glutamate is added artificially to packaged food to enhance flavour.
Health impact: Large doses of MSG can cause headaches and other feelings of discomfort collectively known as Chinese Restaurant Syndrome.
Maharashtra Government has launched Swachhata Saptapadi scheme on the lines of Union Government’s flagship Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. The scheme was launched by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis along with actor Aamir Khan who is brand ambassador of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in Mumbai.
The term saptapadi means vows taken during marriage by bride and groom in Maharashtra. Under this scheme, state government will introduce the concept of a pledge to create awareness and seriousness about the Swachh Maharashtra Abhiyan. The objective of the scheme is to expedite the process of cleanliness drive complete with toilet every household by October 2, 2015 and 2016.
For successful implementation of the scheme by municipal councils and corporations, grants received from the 14th Finance Commission will be linked with it. Dumping of debris or waste will not be allowed at dumping grounds and processing of waste will be made mandatory.
United States (US) in a landmark decision has removed Cuba from its list of State Sponsor of Terrorism. In this regard US secretary of state John Kerry has signed an order removing Cuba from the terrorism blacklist. This decision will pave the way for normalizing and strengthening ties between both countries which were frozen for half a century after the Cuban missile crisis in 1962. United States decision for rescission of Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism comes after an assessment which indicates that Cuba meets the statutory criteria for rescission. This move eliminates a major obstacle toward restoring diplomatic ties after 54 years of between both nations and allows Cuba to conduct banking in US along with among other activities.
In December 2014, after both countries had agreed to re-establish diplomatic ties. Later in same month US President Barack Obama had instructed the Secretary of State to immediately launch a review of Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism. He was asked to provide a report regarding Cuba’s support for international terrorism within six months. In April 2015, Kerry completed that review and recommended to the President that Cuba no longer be designated as a State Sponsor of Terrorism.
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