COVID-19 Vaccine to be available for children by September: ICMR-NIV Director

•National Institute of Virology – Indian Council of Medical Research has expressed the possibility of the COVID-19 vaccine for children to be available by September 2021.

•Priya Abraham, Director ICMR-NIV said that Phase-II and III trials of COVAXIN are underway for children aged 2 to 18 years for which the results will available soon be presented to the regulators.

•Zydus Cadila’s COVID-19 vaccine trial is also underway and can also be used on children, Abraham added.

•COVID-19 vaccines are important to build protection against all variants including the Delta variant. Mixing and matching vaccines will not cause a safety issue. Recommendations for boosters will be available soon, Abraham added.

Uttarakhand govt announces Rs 25 lakh cash award for Vandana Katariya

•Uttarakhand CM Pushkar Singh Dhami on August 7, 2021, announced a cash award of Rs 25 lakh for Vandana Katariya who represented India at Tokyo Olympics 2020 in the Women’s Hockey Team.

•The Indian Women’s Hockey team however could not win a medal in the Bronze medal match against Great Britain in the Tokyo Olympics 2020.

•The CM will also introduce a new sports policy in the state to aid the training of budding sportspersons across different games.

INS Kochi to participate in four-day Maritime Partnership Exercise in Bahrain

•INS Kochi as a part of its Persian Gulf deployment will participate in the four-day Maritime Partnership Exercise beginning August 18, 2021, at Manama in Bahrain.

•Indian and Bahrain Navy teams also conducted coordination and operational planning conference in the past couple of days.

•Flag Officer Commanding Western Fleet Rear Admiral Ajay Kochhar called on Chief of the Naval Staff of the Royal Bahrain Naval Force Rear Admiral Mohammed Yousif al-Asam. He also called on His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa.

MBDA, BDL establish facility for Test of Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile in India

•MBDA, a European multinational developer and manufacturer of missiles, and Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) are establishing a facility for the final assembly, integration, and test of Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile (ASRAAM) missiles in India.

•ASRAAM missiles are one of the Within Visual Range missiles that BDL will manufacture at its Bhanur unit for domestic and export purposes through MBDA.

•MBDA International Industrial Cooperation Director, George Kyriakides and BDL technical Director N P Diwakar signed the agreement virtually in the presence of BDL CMD, Commodore Siddharth Mishra (Retd).

•As per the agreement, MBDA will provide knowledge and equipment to BDL for establishing the facility in India which is due to start immediately. Operations are expected to begin by next financial year.

•The agreement is BDL’s commitment to contributing to the ‘Atmanirbhar’ and ‘Make in India’ initiatives of the Indian Government in the Defence sector.

Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw launches ‘Amrit Mahotsav Shri Shakti Challenge 2021’

•Union Minister for Electronics and Information Technology Ashwini Vaishnaw on August 17, 2021, launched the ‘Amrit Mahotsav Shri Shakti Challenge 2021’ to encourage technology solutions developed by Women Entrepreneurs that stimulate women’s safety and empowerment.

•The Minister while speaking at the Startup Women Entrepreneurs’ Awards function virtually said the aim of the challenge is to empower women and help them in achieving their full potential.

•Currently, the number of incubators and accelerators at 100 per cent is not sufficient for a country of over 130 crore population. The government is working to scale up the network in the next three years, said Vaishnaw.

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