Institute of National Importance Current Affairs - 2020

Chitra Gene LAMP-N: Diagnostic kit developed by SCTIMST, Thiruvananthapuram

The Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Science (SCTIMST), an institute of national importance developed a diagnostic kit. The kit reduces test time by two hours.

Why is it better than RT-PCR?

The cost of the kit is Rs 1000. The time taken by the kit to examine the samples is half as that of the time taken by the RT-PCR tests. Currently, India is using RT-PCR to examine COVID-19 samples. It takes 5 hours for the test to produce results. Also, the test costs Rs 4,500.

About the Kit

The kit uses RT-LAMP technique to identify the N gene of the virus. The kit has passed all validations of National Institute of Virology. The technology used in the kit was earlier applied to detect tuberculosis bacteria.


The RT-LAMP is a technique is Reverse Transcriptase Loop Mediated Isothermal Amplification technique. The technique has begun to replace RT-PCR for its rapidity, simplicity, sensitivity and specificity.

Cabinet approves to give status of Institution of National Importance to 5 IIITs

On February 5, 2020, the Union Cabinet approved to confer the status of Institution of National Importance to 5 IIITs (Indian Institute of Information Tecnology). All the 5 IIITs are to operate in PPP mode.


The Cabinet approved the Information Technology Laws (Amendment) bill, 2020. According to the bill, five IIITs along with 15 other IIITs are to be declared as Institutions of National Importance and will hold powers to awards degrees of Bachelor of Technology, Master of Technology, BTech and PhD degree.

Features of the bill

The bill will grant statutory status to 5 IIITs that are operating in PPP mode at Bhopal, Surat, Bhagalpur, Agartala and Raichur. There are already 15 IIITs that are currently operating under PPP model. There are 5 IIITs in India that were set up by the Ministry of Human Resource Development. This means that complete funding for the institute comes from GoI. No private parties are involved. It includes IIITs in Gwalior, Jabalpur, Kancheepuram, Allahabad and Kurnool.