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UPSC Courses

SAMRIDH Scheme

Startups are new types of wealth creators in our country. The need of the hour is to relentlessly work towards making India’s Startups and the Startup Ecosystem the best in the whole world. This vision of Prime Minister was also emphasised by Electronics and Information Technology Minister Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw in a recent event whereby he stated, “Government will support startups and entrepreneurs in the most challenging phase which is the initial risk phase and also stated to

Global Trends Report on Forced Displacements by UNHCR

The Global Trends Report is an annual report published by UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees). The report counts and tracks the numbers of refugees, internally displaced people. It also tracks people who have returned to their countries or areas of origin, asylum-seekers, stateless people, and other populations of concern. Features of the Report Around 82.4 million people were forcibly displaced, by the end of 2020. Reasons behind that were, persecution, conflic

The Nansen Initiative

The Nansen Initiative is a state-led, bottom-up consultative process intended to build consensus on the development of a protection agenda addressing the needs of people displaced across international borders in the context of disasters and the effects of climate change. The overall goal of the Nansen Initiative is to build consensus among States on key principles and elements to protect people displaced across borders in the context of disasters caused by natural hazards, including those l

Earthquake resistant buildings using Thermocol

Thermocol could be the material of the future for construction of Earthquake resistant buildings, with thermal insulation and could also save energy required to develop construction materials. Researchers at IIT Roorkee have found that thermocol or Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) is used as a composite material in core of reinforced concrete sandwich, could resist earthquake forces on up to four-storey buildings. The researchers tested a full-scale building and a number of wall elements constr

Air Pollution in Delhi

Background An AQI between 0-50 is considered ‘good’, 51-100 ‘satisfactory’, 101-200 ‘moderate’, 201-300 ‘poor’, 301-400 ‘very poor’ and 401-500 ‘severe’. Above 500 falls in the ‘severe-plus emergency’ category.  Measures announced under GRAP- Severe+ or Emergency- (PM 2.5 over 300 µg/cubic metre or PM10 over 500 µg/cu. m. for 48+ hours): Stop entry of trucks into Delhi (except essential

Largest floating solar PV Project at Vishakhapatnam

Largest floating solar PV Project at Vishakhapatnam The National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC ) Ltd,  has commissioned the largest floating solar PV project of 25MW on the reservoir of its Simhadri thermal station in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. This is also the first solar project to be set up under the Flexibilisation Scheme, notified by the Government of India in 2018. The Solar PV project was inaugurated today by Shri Sanjay Madan, RED (WR2 & SR), NTPC . The fl

Geological Survey of India

The Geological Survey of India (GSI ) was set up in 1851 primarily to find coal deposits for the Railways. Over the years, GSI has not only grown into a repository of geo-science information required in various fields in the country but has also attained the status of a geo-scientific organisation of international repute. Its main functions relate to creating and updating of national geoscientific information and mineral resource assessment. These objectives are achieved through ground

TAPAS Initiative

TAPAS (Training for Augmenting Productivity and Services) is the initiative of National Institute of Social Defence (NISD), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, to provide access to lectures by subject experts, study material and more, but in a manner that it supplements the physical classroom without compromising on the quality of teaching. The main objective of introducing the course modules is to impart training and enhance the knowledge and skills for the capacity building of th

Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga Project

Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga project is also known as Jagdishpur – Haldia & Bokaro – Dhamra Pipeline Project (JHBDPL). It is a gas pipeline project that aims to provide cooking gas to people. It was launched in 2016 in Varanasi and later extended to people in the states of Bihar, West Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand. The government is taking the initiative to connect the eastern states with the national gas grid. The total length of the pipeline under the Pradhan Mantri Ur

North East Gas Grid Project

In only the second instance of the government directly funding a gas pipeline, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on Wednesday approved a ?5,559 crore viability gap funding of 60% for the proposed northeast gas grid. About 20% of India’s natural gas production comes from the North-East. Out of about 75 million standard cubic meters per day of gas output, 15 mmscmd come from North East. Currently Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Tripura have established gas production pot

Indian Institute of Heritage at Noida

The government has decided to set up the ‘Indian Institute of Heritage’ at Noida, Gautam Buddha Nagar. Indian Institute of Heritage will be a world-class university. IIH would offer Masters and Ph.D courses in History of Arts, Conservation, Museology, Archival Studies, Archaeology. This will impact higher education and research in the fields related to rich Indian heritage and its conservation. Indian Institute of Heritage would offer Masters and Ph.D courses in History of A

Who evaluates Mineral deposits in India?

Mineral assessment is a continuous process and a number of exploration agencies like Geological Survey of India [GSI], Mineral Exploration Corporation Limited [MECL], Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research [AMDER], State Departments of Geology and Mining [DGMs], State/Central Undertakings are engaged in exploration of mineral deposits in the country. For mineral surveys in the country, GSI is the nodal agency to formulate exploration programmes of various agencies through

Seekho aur Kamao Scheme

Seekho Aur Kamao is a skill development scheme for youth of 14 - 35 years age group and aiming at providing employment and employment opportunities, improving the employability of existing workers, school dropouts etc. In the last 7 years appx. 3.92 lakh persons have been benefitted under this employment oriented scheme. The scheme ensures 75% placement, out of which 50% should be in organized sector. As per scheme guidelines, the implementing organizations will be required to establ

'Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis' IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report

The Sixth Assessment Report has been finalised and approved by 234 authors and 195 governments and updates the scientific consensus on extreme weather, human attribution, the carbon budget, feedback cycles, and charts the future state of the climate since the Fifth Assessment Report of 2014. The 3,000-plus-page report said warming is already accelerating sea level rise and worsening extremes such as heatwaves, droughts, floods and storms. The Indian Ocean is warming at a higher rate th

National Mission on Edible Oil-Oil Palm: New Edible oil mission

The Centre will spend ?11,000 crore on a new mission to ensure self-sufficiency in edible oil production at a time when India’s dependence on expensive imports has driven retail oil prices to new highs. This financial outlay for the National Mission on Edible Oil-Oil Palm (NMEO-OP) will be over a five-year period.   “Today, when India is being recognised as a major agricultural exporting country, then it is not appropriate for us to depend on imports for our edib

Everything about e-RUPI

Everything about e-RUPI What is e-RUPI and how it works ? e-RUPI is basically a digital voucher which a beneficiary gets on his phone in the form of an SMS or QR code.  It is a pre-paid voucher, which he/she can go and redeem it at any centre that accepts its. For example, if the Government wants to cover a particular treatment of an employee in a specified hospital, it can issue an e-RUPI voucher for the determined amount through a partner bank.  The employee will rec

SATYAM Programme and Cognitive Science Research Initiative

SATYAM Programme and Cognitive Science Research Initiative Recently, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) has initiated the Science and Technology of Yoga and Meditation (SATYAM) programme. Under SATYAM, DST has invited proposals to study appropriate intervention of yoga and meditation in fighting Covid-19 and similar kinds of viruses. Aim: To provide assistance to society in today’s critical condition arising due to pandemic Covid

Grants for Urban Local Bodies

Grants for Urban Local Bodies The Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance has released an amount of Rs. 685.80 crore to 4 States for providing grants to the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs).  Out of this, an amount of Rs.494 crore has been released to Uttar Pradesh, Rs.110.20 crore to Gujarat, Rs. 74.80 crore to Jharkhand and Rs.6.80 crore to Mizoram. Grants for Urban Local Bodies have been released as per the recommendations of the 15th Finance Commission.  They are aimed a

New Scheme for J&K

The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade has notified “New Central Sector Scheme for industrial development of Jammu and Kashmir” with financial outlay of Rs. 28,400 crore on 19/02/2021 and is effective from 01.04.2021 to 31.03.2037. The scheme is applicable for any eligible industrial (manufacturing) entity or eligible service sector enterprise other than those run departmentally by Government, which is registered business enterprise under Goods and Service

India Digital Ecosystem of Agriculture (IDEA)

In order to create Agristack in the country, the department is in the process of finalising “India Digital Ecosystem of Agriculture (IDEA)” which will lay down a framework for Agristack. Accordingly, a Task Force has been constituted and in furtherance, a Concept Paper on IDEA has already been floated for comments from the general public not only through department’s website but also through emails especially to subject matter specialists, Agro-Industry, Farmers, Farmer P

Schemes for promoting domestic manufacturing of APIs

Production Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme for promotion of domestic manufacturing of critical Key Starting Materials (KSMs)/ Drug Intermediates (DIs) and Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) In India: The scheme provides for financial incentives to manufacturers selected under the scheme for manufacturing of 41 Key Starting Materials (KSMs)/ Drug Intermediates (DIs) and Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs). The incentives will be provided on incremental sales to selected participants f

Aerosol and Climate Change

Aerosol and Climate Change Scientists tracing the concentration, size and evolution of aerosol particles smaller than 3 nanometres at an urban location in India have found frequent formation of sub-3nm aerosol particles in the atmosphere. This has critical importance as a major fraction of these newly formed particles can reach to sizes of cloud condensation nuclei where they have climatic impacts. The formation of small molecular clusters of sub-3nm size is technically called aerosol nu

e-RUPI app launched as a digital payment solution

e-RUPI app launched as a digital payment solution e-RUPI is a cashless and contactless instrument for digital payment. It is a QR code or SMS string-based e-Voucher, which is delivered to the mobile of the beneficiaries. The users of this seamless one-time payment mechanism will be able to redeem the voucher without a card, digital payments app or internet banking access, at the service provider. It has been developed by National Payments Corporation of India on its UPI platform,

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