15 October, 2019

6 Min Read


First preschool curriculum released by NCERT


#Children between 3 to 6 years should be taught in their own mother tongue

#Learning through playing rather than Rote learning, examinations and test.

#Applicable in all schools anganwadis ,nursery schools, kindergarten, Play Schools.

#Draft national education policy : recommended that RTE to be extended to 3 years of preschool before Class 1.

#On no account, should children be made to take any form of test or examination either oral or written.

#Focus on emotional and social stability.

#The guidelines have also defined parameters for infrastructure, qualifications and salary for preschool Staff, admission process and records and registers to be maintained, monitoring and supervision mechanism and importance of coordination and convergence with community and parents.

Objectives of NCERT:

The main objectives of the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) are to:

(i) undertake, aid, promote and coordinate research in areas related to school education;

(ii) prepare and publish model textbooks, supplementary material, newsletters, journals and other related literature;

(iii) organize pre-service and in-service training of teachers;

(iv) develop and disseminate innovative educational techniques and practices;

(v) collaborate and network with state educational departments, universities, NGOs and other educational institutions;

(vi) act as a clearing house for ideas and information in matters related to school education;

(vii) act as a nodal agency for achieving goals of universalisation of elementary education.


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Debate over Rafale deal and light combat aircraft Tejas.

Difference between Tejas and Rafale:

1. Light combat aircraft Tejas is lightweight multi combat aircraft.
Raffle is medium weight multirole combat aircraft.
2. Both are 4++ category fighter jets. ( Even Pakistan has procured 5th generation category fighter jets from China India still is procuring only e 4++ category rafel fighter jet).
3. Tejas is made 100% in India where as Rafale is a foreign procurement and is also highly expensive.
4. Both fighter jets have similar power, speed and range.

Other advantages of light combat aircraft Tejas:

a. Air to air refuelling
b. Naval variant is under development
c. AESA Radar.
d. Good weapon carrying capability.

Disadvantages in Tejas Manufacturing :

a. Delay in manufacturing by HAL and lack of bulk production.
b. Problem through delay in production of Kaveri engine.

Advantages of Rafale:

a. It is a fully developed naval variant.
b. Easy or reliable maintenance
c. Easy weapon integration
d. AESA radar

Disadvantages of Rafale:

a. Not made in India
b. 4 + + fighter jet
c.highly expensive
d. Not much of difference with Tejas.
e. Problem of training of air and ground crew,building of infrastructure and operationalizing new types will decrease the effective rate of force accretion.


1. Tejas can be manufactured in bulk and used where Rafael need not be inducted . Tejas can be used as second line of Defence guarding the borders.
2. Faster adoption of Tejas MK 2 for Indian Navy.
3. Faster adoption of 5th generation Advanced medium combat aircraft (AMCA).
4. Tejas will be the only light fighter jet in the world which will have its own trainer variant ,carry carrier naval variant and naval trainer variant.


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Asia-Pacific Trade Investment report,2019 by UNESCAP

About Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report (APTIR):

  • The Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report (APTIR) is a recurrent publication prepared by the Trade, Investment and Innovation Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.
  • It provides information on and independent analyses of trends and developments in:

(a) intra- and inter-regional trade in goods and services;

(b) foreign direct investment;

(c) trade facilitation measures;

(d) trade policy measures; and

(e) preferential trade policies and agreements.

  • The report offers insights into the impacts of these recent and emerging developments on countries’ abilities to meet the challenges of achieving inclusive and sustainable development.
  • The Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report (APTIR) is a biennial publication.

2019 Theme:

The theme of APTIR 2019 is Navigating Non-tariff Measures (NTMs) towards Sustainable Development.

What is Non trade Measures ?

NTMs include technical measures such as sanitary (for protection of human and animal health), and phytosanitary (for protection of plant health), or SPS, and Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), which are related to environmental and sustainable standards that are set to block or slow down trade instead of regular tariffs or duties.

About Non Tariff Measures (NTMs):

  • Non-tariff measures (NTMs) have increased in the past two decades and are affecting trade as well sustainable development goals (SDGs) in Asian countries.
  • NTMs affect 58 per cent of the trade in Asia-Pacific.
  • NTMs can have a direct impact on the performance of trading partners. They can also impact issues such as health, safety, environment, climate, public security and peace, which in turn, influence SDGs.
  • Around half the Asia-Pacific’s economies have at least one NTM addressing water and energy efficiency and only 10 per cent have measures addressing illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and illegal timber trade.

Source: The Hindu

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GS-III : Economic Issues welfare

Why was this award given ?

For the experimental approach to alleviate Global poverty

Who give the award ?

Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences

Name of the award :

Sveriges Riksbank Prize in economic Sciences

Awardees :

a. Abhijit Banerjee
b. Esther Duflo
c. Michael Kremer

Impact of this approach :

a. To fight Global poverty
b. Effective interventions for improving educational outcomes and child health.

Approach :

" Evidence based approach"- based on the concept of clinical trials of pharmaceutical industry.

Technique used :

Breaking down the big picture questions into smaller and more manageable and measurable questions. These questions would be answered by the most affected.

Eg. Rajasthan vaccination program was a huge success when the women were given free bags of pulses in return of bringing their child to vaccination.

Institutions that choose winners: (Pt Shots)

1. Nobel prize in Physics and Chemistry : by The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences

2. Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine : by The Karolinska Institutet

3. Nobel prize in Literature : by The Swedish Academy

4. Nobel Peace prize : 5 member Committee elected by the Norwegian Parliament

5. Prize in Economic prizes : The Royal Swedish Acdemy of Sciences


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