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UPSC Courses

Harvest Festivals in India

Makar Sankranti: Makar Sankranti denotes the entry of the sun into the zodiac sign of Makara (Capricorn) as it travels on its celestial path. The day marks the onset of summer and the six months auspicious period for Hindus known as Uttarayan, the northward movement of the sun. As a part of the official celebration of 'Uttarayan', the Gujarat government has been hosting the International Kite Festival since 1989. The festivities associated with the day are known by dif

Channapatna Toys

The Prime Minister has called upon to explore the possibility of e-marketing of Channapatna toys across the country and the world, during the India Toy Fair 2021. About Channapatna Toys: Channapatna toys are a particular form of wooden toys. Artisans of the town Channapatna in Karnataka manufactures them. In Kannada, Channapatna is also called “Gombegala Ooru”, which means toy town in English. Origin: The origin of these toys can be traced to the reign of Tipu Sultan

Goldilocks Zones

A habitable zone, also called the “Goldilocks zone”, is the area around a star where it is not too hot and not too cold for liquid water to exist on the surface of surrounding planets. Our Earth is in the Sun’s Goldilocks zone. If Earth were where the dwarf planet Pluto is, all its water would freeze; on the other hand, if Earth were where Mercury is, all its water would boil off. Life on Earth started in water, and water is a necessary ingredient for life as we k

Mass Spectrometry

Mass spectrometry is an analytical method useful for calculating the mass-to – charge ratio ( m / z) of one or more molecules. Using this, researchers can ionise or break down the compound into simple ions and then identify the molecules based on their masses. The current process of ionisation requires electrical potential of a few kilo volts, heat or high energy ultraviolet lasers (UV-lasers). But now, new method been developed soft ionisation using nanosheets which elimina

New IT Rules related to Social Media

Social media companies are prohibited from hosting or publishing any unlawful information. These information are “in relation to the interest of the sovereignty and integrity of India, public order, friendly relations with foreign countries, etc. If such information is hosted or published the government can take down such information within 24 hours. The user will be given a notice before his/her content is taken down. The government can direct messaging platforms to tie t

Snow Leopard

  Also known as Ghost of the mountains acts as an indicator of the health of the mountain ecosystem in which they live, due to their position as the top predator in the food web. Habitation: The Snow Leopard lives at high altitudes in the steep mountains of Central and Southern Asia, and in an extremely cold climate. They inhabit the higher Himalayan and trans-Himalayan landscape in the states/union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim,

Chandrayaan-3

Chandrayaan-3 is likely to be launched in 2022 (earlier scheduled to be launched in late 2020). Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO’s) Chandrayaan-3 is India's third mission to Moon. It aims to make a soft-landing in the Lunar South Pole’s Aitken basin. It will consist of only a lander and rover, as the orbiter of Chandrayaan-2 is still functioning and providing data.

Gaganyaan Mission

ISRO is targeting December, 2021 to launch the unmanned test mission of Gaganyaan project (earlier scheduled for December 2020). ISRO’s Gaganyaan is India's first manned space mission. It envisages sending three Indians to space by 2022. Four pilots have been selected for the mission and they are undergoing training in Russia. Gaganyaan will involve Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle GSLV Mark III rocket with a modified upper stage compatible with a crew module and crew

Index of Eight Core Industries

This index for January, 2021 was released by the Office of the Economic Adviser, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade. Eight Core Industries - Coal, Crude Oil, Natural Gas, Petroleum Refinery Products, Fertilizers, Steel, Cement, Electricity. These Core Industries comprise 40.27% of the weight of items included in the Index of Industrial Production (IIP). Since 2014, Electricity generation data from Renewable sources are also included. Consumer Price Index

COVAX Program

Ghana has become the first country in the world to receive a shipment of coronavirus vaccines under the COVAX program. Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) is a global initiative aimed at equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines. It is led by the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (GAVI), the World Health Organization (WHO), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and others. It wants to vaccinate roughly 20% of the population in the 92 Advance Market Com

Inscription on Krishnadevraya’s death (of Vijayanagar) discovered

Inscription on Krishnadevraya’s death (of Vijayanagar) discovered The first-ever epigraphical reference to the date of death of Vijayanagar king Krishnadevaraya has been discovered at Honnenahalli in Tumakuru district. As per the inscription, Krishnadevaraya, one of the greatest emperors of India who ruled from the South, died on October 17, 1529, Sunday, and incidentally this day was marked by a lunar eclipse. The inscription (written in Kannada) is engraved on a slab kept

IT Regulation Rules 2021

Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 have been framed under the Information Technology Act, 2000, and it supersedes the IT Rules, 2011. It will ensure a harmonious, soft-touch oversight mechanism in relation to social media platform, digital media and OTT platforms etc. Part- II of these Rules to Social Media shall be administered by Ministry of Electronics and IT. These Rules empower the users of digital platforms to seek redressal

Swachh Iconic Places

Ministry of Jal Shakti has selected 12 iconic sites to be transformed into ‘Swachh Tourist Destinations’ under Swachh Iconic Places (SIP) of Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen (SBM-G). Sites - Ajanta Caves, Sanchi Stupa, Kumbhalgarh Fort, Jaisalmer Fort, Sun Temple, Ramdevra, Golconda Fort, Chandigarh Rock Garden, Dal Lake, Mathura Banke Bihari Temple, Agra Fort, Bengal Kalighat Temple. SIP initiative aims at enhancing the experience of visitors by improving the sanitation and clea

Accredited Investor

SEBI has proposed to introduce the concept of ‘accredited investors’ in the securities market. Accredited investors (Qualified investors or Professional investors) are those who have an understanding of various financial products and the risks and returns associated with them. They are able to take informed decisions regarding their investments and are recognised by many securities and financial market regulators globally. SEBI said the accreditation once granted shall be va

Kodaikanal Solar Observatory

Kodaikanal Solar Observatory (KoSO) has estimated how the Sun had rotated over the Century, from digitized data extracted from old films and photographs. KoSO is an autonomous institute of Department of Science and Technology (DST). This estimation would help study magnetic field generated in the interior of the Sun, which causes sunspots and results in extreme situations like the mini-ice age on Earth (absence of sunspots). It could help predict solar cycles and the

Indian Energy Exchange

IEX is the first and largest nationwide energy exchange platform in India, which has been operating since 2008. It is an automated trading platform for physical delivery of electricity, Renewable Energy Certificates and Energy Saving Certificates. It enables efficient price discovery and increases the accessibility and transparency of the power market in India. The benefiting open access consumers belong to various industries such as metal, food processing, textile, chemicals, automobil

United Nations Human Rights Council

The 46th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) was held recently. The UNHRC replaced the former UN Commission on Human Rights. The 47-member UNHRC is an inter-governmental body that promotes and protects human rights around the globe. It discusses all thematic human rights violation issues and situations that require its attention throughout the year. It is made up of UN Member States which are elected by the UN General Assembly. It meets at the United Nations

Carbon Watch

It is India’s first app to assess the carbon footprint of an individual. Carbon footprint is the amount of greenhouse gases-especially carbon dioxide-released into the atmosphere by a particular human activity. Chandigarh became the first state or Union Territory in India to launch the mobile application Carbon Watch.

National Urban Digital Mission

National Urban Digital Mission (NUDM) was launched by Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). NUDM will create a shared digital infrastructure for urban India by working across the three pillars of people, process, and platform to provide holistic support to cities and towns. It will institutionalise a citizen-centric, principles-based and ecosystem-driven approach to urban governance and service delivery in 2

India Urban Data Exchange

India Urban Data Exchange (IUDX) is an open-source software platform developed by the Smart Cities Mission and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru. It facilitates secure exchange of Smart City data amongst data platforms, 3rd party authenticated and authorised applications, and other sources. This Smart City data could be monetised in the future, similar to the UPI for bank accounts and digital payments. It serves as an interface for data providers and data users to s

SmartCode Platform

It enables all ecosystem stakeholders to contribute to a repository of open-source code for various solutions and applications for urban governance. It addresses the challenges that Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) face in the development and deployment of digital applications to address urban challenges. The source code available on the platform will be free to use without any licensing or subscription fees, thus limiting costs to those involved with customising the code and developin

Central Employment Guarantee Council

The Council was constituted under Section 10 of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), 2005. The Central Government has constituted this Council to discharge the functions and perform duties assigned to it by or under the provisions of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, 2005. Chairperson - Minister of Rural Development, Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare. It advises the Central Government on all matters concerning the implementation of t

Bio-Restoration

A new technology for ecological restoration (Bio-restoration) was developed by Indian scientists. It is helping in revival of mangroves degraded due to rising sea levels, climate change and human intrusion in the Sunderbans, West Bengal. The Sundarbans is a protected wetland under the Ramsar Convention and is also a UNESCO World Heritage site. Ecological restoration means reviving native ecosystem in degraded areas while maintaining diversity of original flora and fauna through reg

Agriculture Infrastructure Development Cess

The Budget 2021-22 has proposed a new levy, Agriculture Infrastructure Development Cess (AIDC) on 29 items. The purpose of the new AIDC is to raise funds to finance spending on developing agriculture infrastructure. The new cess will be levied on 29 products, such as gold, silver, as well as imported alcohol (excluding beer), imported apple, pulses, palm oil, urea, and petrol/diesel including branded ones. The new cess will only offset the reduction in Basic Custom Duty (BCD), Basic Exc

African Swine Fever Virus

Scientists have found a natural mutation in the African swine fever virus (ASFV) that could be less deadly than the strain that ravaged the world’s largest pig herd in 2018 and 2019. ASFV is an intra cytoplasmically-replicating DNA arbovirus, which is the sole member of the family Asfarviridae. ASF is a severe viral disease that affects wild and domestic pigs resulting in a highly lethal haemorrhagic fever, but doesn’t affect humans. It has almost 100% case fatality rate (CF

Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare is going to integrate Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) with NPCDCS. NPCDCS - National Programme for Prevention & Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke. Conditions - It is a distinct hepatic condition where there is accumulation of excess fat in the liver of people who drink little or no alcohol, causing fatty liver. Causes - NAFLD is a part of the metabolic syndrome characterized by diabetes,

Scheme of Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries (SFURTI)

50 artisan-based clusters were recently inaugurated through the SFURTI Scheme in 18 States. Ministry of MSME is implementing a SFURTI with a view to organize traditional industries and artisans into clusters to make them competitive and increase their income. Ministry of MSME, which aims to support at least one cluster in each district in the future. SFURTI clusters are of two types i.e., Regular Cluster (500 artisans) with Government assistance

International Atomic Energy Agency

Iran will continue to give access to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to its declared nuclear sites for 3 months. IAEA’s genesis was U.S. President Eisenhower’s “Atoms for Peace” address to the United Nations General Assembly in 1953. It was established in 1957 as an autonomous organization which is not under direct control of the UN. Head quartered in Vienna, IAEA seeks to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and to inhibit its use for any milita

International Space Station

It is the only active modular space station (habitable artificial satellite) in the Earth’s Orbit. It is the largest artificial object in space and the largest satellite in low Earth orbit, visible to the naked eye from Earth's surface. It is a joint project between five participating space agencies - NASA (USA), Roscosmos, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), European Space Agency, and Canadian Space Agency.

Progress MS-16 Cargo Ship

Progress MS-16 or Progress 77 cargo ship has delivered water, propellant and other supplies to the International Space Station (ISS). Progress MS-16 is an unmanned Russian cargo ship launched by Russian Space Agency, Roscosmos.

VL-SRSAM Missile System

Vertical Launch Short Range Surface to Air Missile (VL-SRSAM) was launched by Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO). It is indigenously designed and developed by DRDO, along with Research Centre Imarat, and the Pune-based Research and Development Establishment (Engineers). Once deployed, the VL-SRSAM system will prove to be a force multiplier for the Indian Navy. With an effective Weapon Control System (WCS), it would neutralize various aerial threat

Tree City Status to Hyderabad

Hyderabad city has the ‘Tree Cities of the World’ status by the Arbor Day Foundation jointly with the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation. It is the only city in India to have been selected for this recognition for its commitment to growing and maintaining urban and community forestry. Hyderabad applied for this recognition, citing the State government’s Haritha Haram programme and its initiative for the Urban Forest Parks.

Siberian Mammoths

Siberian Mammoths Scientists have recovered and sequenced the oldest DNA on record, from the molars of mammoths that roamed Siberia up to 1.2 million years ago. Until now, the oldest DNA came from a horse that lived in Canada's Yukon Territory about 700,000 years ago. Researchers gained insights into mammoth evolution and migration by comparing the DNA to that of mammoths that lived more recently (4,000 years ago). The molars of the mammoths were discovered near the Krestovka Riv

One Nation One Standard

Mission "One Nation One Standard" would make India the leader in setting global benchmarks in setting standards. This mission was established in 2019 to ensure quality products and services to consumers in the country. While all areas of production and services be included in this mission, bringing a national uniformity and standardization in all kinds of public procurement and tendering can be an immediate deliverable. The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) would explore intern

Sri Nankana Sahib Massacre

Nankana Sahib is the birth place of first Sikh guru, Guru Nanak Dev. The centenary of Sri Nankana Sahib Massacre (Saka Nankana Sahib) is being marked in an event in Nankana Sahib on February 21, 2021. It was also the site of the first big agitation by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) to take back control of gurdwaras from priests (mahants) backed by the British. Sikh leaders made attempts to bring mahant to the negotiation table but their efforts failed. On Feb

Governing Council of NITI Aayog

Sixth meeting of the Governing Council of NITI Aayog was held under the chairmanship of Prime Minister with following agenda: Making India a Manufacturing Powerhouse Reimagining Agriculture Improving Physical Infrastructure Accelerating Human Resources Development Improving Service Delivery at Grassroots Level Health and Nutrition Governing Council is the premier body tasked with evolving a shared vision of national development priorities, sectors and strategies

Draft Act on Land Titles

Following are the provisions proposed under the draft Act: Setting up of State land authority: Under the proposal, each state is to set up a land authority that will have a title registration officer (TRO) who will prepare a title record based on document-based claims from the presumptive owners and any claimants. Draft list of presumptive ownership: The authority will then publish a draft list of the presumptive ownership of every plot (on which it has rece

UNEP report on CO2 Emissions

UNEP report on CO2 Emissions In its recent report, UNEP has highlighted that CO2 emissions from building sector is highest in 2019. The building sector emitted more than a third of global energy-related carbon dioxide. Of the total global emissions, building operations accounted for 28% & construction-related industries (cement, glass, etc) accounted 10%. Use of fossil fuels for power generation & carbon-intensive electricity sector contributed for the increased CO2 emissions.

Ease of Doing Business Rankings

Ease of Doing Business Rankings The ease of doing business index is an index created jointly by Simeon Djankov and Gerhard Pohl, two leading economists at the World Bank Group. The report is released by the World Bank. Why in news: 2020 data irregularities controversy: Several major newspapers – including the Financial Times, The Economist, and The Wall Street Journal – report that the data of China, Azerbaijan, United Arab

Himalayan trillium

Himalayan trillium Trillium govanianum- Himalayan herb is often called Nagchatri in local areas. It is found in temperate and sub-alpine zones of the Himalayas at an altitude from 2,400-4,000 metres above sea level. In India, it is found in four states only - Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Sikkim, and Uttarakhand. International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has placed Himalayan trillium in “Endangered” category. Its population is expected to declin

WCCB wins Asia Environmental Enforcement Award-2020

The Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) has received the Asia Environmental Enforcement Award-2020.  It is awarded by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). WCCB got the award twice in three years.  It has been awarded this year under the Innovation category.   Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) It is a statutory body constituted under the WildLife (Protection) Act, 1972. Ministry: Ministry of Environment and Forests. Mandate: To combat org

Declining Rainfall in Mawsynram

Why it rain highest in Mawsynram? Because of the uneven relief of India due to the presence of a number of hill ranges, the monsoon is not able to shed its moisture evenly over India. Windward sides receive more rainfall and leeward sides receive less rainfall. Mawsynram lies in the funnel-shaped depression caused by the Khasi range in Meghalaya. The Bay of Bengal branch of monsoons is trapped in it and causes heavy rainfall. Decreasing rainfall trends The research analyse

India Energy Outlook Report 2021

This report was released by the International Energy Agency (IEA). It has forecasted that India will overtake the European Union as the world’s third-largest energy consumer by 2030. At present, India is the fourth-largest global energy consumer behind China, the United States and the European Union. It is based on the forecast that India accounts for the biggest share of energy demand growth over the next two decades. India’s primary energy consumption would double as the

CPI-Agriculture Labour and CPI-Rural Labour

Consumer Price Index (CPI) for Agricultural Labourers (AL) and Rural Labourers (RL) for the month of January 2021 is decreased. The major contribution towards the fall in general index of AL and RL came from the fall in prices of pulses, onion, potato, brinjal etc. The fall/rise in index varied from State to State. Consumer Price Index It examines the weighted average of prices of a basket of consumer goods and services, such as transportation, food, and medical care. It is c

Intensified Mission Indradhanush

Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare has launched Intensified Mission Indradhanush (IMI) 3.0 and the IMI 3.0 portal. Focus of the IMI 3.0 will be the children and pregnant women who have missed their vaccine doses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Beneficiaries from migration areas and hard to reach areas will be targeted. Mission Indradhanush was launched in 2014 to provide affordable and accessible healthcare to all citizens of the country. The present 8th campaign will targ

Acute Encephalitis Syndrome

A child has recently been diagnosed with Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in Bihar, the first case for this year. AES, locally called chamki bukhar (fever causing seizure), usually surfaces during summer in the flood-prone districts of north Bihar. It is characterized by acute-onset of fever and a change in mental status (mental confusion, disorientation, delirium, or coma) along with new-onset of seizures in a person of any age at any time of the year. The disease most commonly affect

Nurturing Neighborhoods Challenge

Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs selected 25 cities selected for the Nurturing Neighbourhoods Challenge under the Smart Cities Mission. These cities would carry out projects for making early childhood-friendly neighbourhoods. It aims to work with Indian cities and their partners to improve public space, mobility, data management across city agencies, etc. Selected cities - Bengaluru, Coimbatore, Erode, Agartala, Indore, Kakinada, Kochi, Ranchi, Salem, Trivandrum,

Sambhar Lake

The Sambhar Salt Lake is India's largest inland saltwater body located near Jaipur in Rajasthan. The lake is surrounded on all sides by the Aravali hills.  It is the source of most of Rajasthan's salt production. Sambhar has been designated as a Ramsar site (recognized wetland of international importance) because the wetland is a key wintering area for tens of thousands of flamingos and other birds that migrate from northern Asia.

NASA's Perseverence Rover to Mars

After a seven months’ journey from Earth, the NASA Perseverance is in its final stretch towards destination Mars. About the Perseverance rover: Launched on July of 2020. It is expected to touch down on Mars at the Jezero Crater. The primary task of Perseverance is to seek signs of ancient life and collect samples of rock and reglolith to possibly return these to Earth. Perseverance is fueled by electrical power by using heat of plutonium’s radioacti

Extinction Rebellion

Extinction Rebellion (XR) was launched in the United Kingdom in 2018, as a response to the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report that declared, We only have 12 years to stop catastrophic climate change and We have entered the 6th mass extinction event. It is a global movement to persuade the governments to act justly on the Climate and Ecological Emergency. It is a decentralised and politically non-partisan movement that uses,

Juvenile Justice Bill, 2021

The Union Cabinet approved amendments to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2015. As per the amendment, the district magistrates (DM) and additional district magistrates (ADM) will monitor the functioning of various agencies responsible for implementation of the JJ Act in every district. The DM can independently evaluate juvenile police unit, specialised Child Welfare Committees (CWC) and registered Child Care Institution (CCI). The district child protection unit

Afghani Chadar to Ajmer Dargah

Afghani Chadar to Ajmer Dargah Afghanistan President has sent the first ever sacred 'Chadar' to the Ajmer Sharif Dargah through its diplomatic mission in New Delhi. This Chadar was given during the 809th 'Urs (Death Anniversary) Mubarak' of Khawaja Gharib Nawaz, which is ongoing in Ajmer. Ajmer Sharif Dargah Ajmer Sharif Dargah is a Sufi shrine of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti, who is well-known for his secular preachings. Located in Rajasthan, it was bu

Delimitation Commission to Hold Delimitation Exercise in J&K

Delimitation Commission holds meeting to seek views on delimitation process of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. Delimitation Act, 2002 This Act was enacted to set up a Delimitation Commission for the purpose of effecting delimitation on the basis of the 2001 census. The Delimitation Commission would re-fix the number of seats for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes based on the 2001 census, without affecting total number of seats based on the 1971 census. The Act

Majuli-Jorhat Bridge

A 6.8 km-long two-lane major bridge is being constructed over the Brahmaputra between Majuli (north bank) and Jorhat (south bank) on NH-715K. This bridge will provide all time access to the people living in Majuli town with rest of Assam to meet their health, education and day to day development activities. The constructions of this bridge also provide a safe evacuation access to the people of Majuli Island during flood in Brahmaputra River. Majuli island is famous for Mishing tribe

Circular Economy

It is an economic system aimed at eliminating waste; and the continual use of resources. It is a system of resources utilization where reduction, reuse and recycling of elements prevail. Circular systems create a closed system, minimizing the use of resource input and the creation of waste, pollution and emissions. It is an alternative to a traditional linear economy. This linear economy is modeled on take-make-waste industrial model (make, use, dispose).  Sustainable Developm

Mahabahu-Brahmaputra project

The Central Government has laid the foundation of Mahabahu-Brahmaputra project to initiate developmental activities near the Brahmaputra and the surrounding areas of the Barak River and to provide seamless connectivity to the region.  Under this project, the foundation stone of a four-lane bridge over the Brahmaputra River between Dhubri (North Coast) and Phulbari (South Coast) will be laid. The proposed bridge will be located on NH-127B, which originates from Shrirampur and terminates

Greater Tipraland

Greater Tipraland ‘Greater Tipraland’ has been a political demand on the lines of ‘Greater Nagalim’, and seeks to – in a democratic manner – cater to the aspirations of Tripuris in Mamit of Mizoram, Kachar and Hailakandi in Assam, and even in Khagrachari, Bandarban, and Chittagong of Bangladesh.

Indian Sign Language Dictionary launched

Prepared by the Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. To give deaf people the constitutional right to speech and opportunity of freedom of expression.

Liquidity Coverage Ratio

Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) indicates the proportion of highly liquid assets held by banks to ensure their ability to meet short-term obligations. This ratio is essentially a generic stress test that aims to make sure that financial institutions possess suitable capital to ride out any short-term liquidity disruptions. How to Calculate the Liquidity Coverage Ratio? The LCR is calculated by dividing a bank's high-quality liquid assets by its total net cash flows, over

Production-Linked Incentive Scheme for the Telecom Sector

Aim of the scheme: It will make India a global hub for manufacturing telecom equipment. It will create jobs and reduce imports especially from China. Focus of the scheme: The scheme will offset the huge import of telecom equipment worth more than Rs 50,000 crore. It will encourage the foreign manufacturers and domestic manufacturers to set up production units in India.   Coverage: The scheme will cover domestic manufacturing of equipment such as core transm

India-Mauritius CECPA

India-Mauritius Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Partnership Agreement (CECPA) will be the first trade Agreement to be signed by India with a country in Africa. This limited agreement will cover Trade in Goods and Services, Rules of Origin, Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures, Dispute Settlement, etc., It will also cover the Movement of Natural Persons, Telecom, Financial services, Customs Procedures and Cooperation in other Areas. Both hav

e-Chhawani Portal

It is an online multi-tenancy central platform. It aims to provide citizen-centric municipal services to the citizens across 62 Cantonment Boards. The residents of cantonment areas can register their complaints regarding civic issues and resolve them while sitting at home. People can get their documents like trade licence, sewerage connectivity applications can be made through the portal. Cantonment Board A cantonment board, an urban local body, established for municipal admi

Dhubri-Phulbari Bridge

Dhubri-Phulbari Bridge A 19-km-long four-lane Bridge between Dhubri (Assam) and Phulbari (Meghalaya) over river Brahmaputra on NH-127B will be constructed. Once completed in 2028, it will be India's longest bridge. This bridge will reduce travel time between Assam and Meghalaya by 6 hours, and distance to 19 km from 200 km. Through this bridge, Assam and Meghalaya will have a direct connection with West Bengal. It will provide a third alternative link to Meghalaya, Manipur,

Traffic Crash Injuries and Disabilities Report

What is the News? The World Bank released a report titled “Traffic Crash Injuries and Disabilities: The Burden on Indian Society”. It highlights the Socio-Economic impacts of road accidents in India. Published by: World Bank in collaboration with SaveLIFE Foundation. India tops the world in road crash deaths and injuries. It has 1% of the world’s vehicles but accounts for 11% of all road crash deaths. It is witnessing 53 road crashes every hour and killing

Constitutional Provisions for Reservation in Education and Jobs

Part XVI deals with reservation of SC and ST in Central and State legislatures. Article 15(4) and 16(4) of the Constitution enabled the State and Central Governments to reserve seats in government services for the members of the SC and ST. The Constitution was amended by the Constitution (77th Amendment) Act, 1995 and a new clause (4A) was inserted in Article 16 to enable the government to provide reservation in promotion. Later, clause (4A) was modified by the Constitution (85th Amendm

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is the New WTO Head

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has been appointed the new chief of the World Trade Organization, becoming the first woman to ever lead the institution and the first African citizen to take on the role.   Roles and functions of Director General of WTO: The director-general of the World Trade Organization is the officer of the World Trade Organization responsible for supervising and directing the organization’s administrative operations. The Director-General has little power over mat

Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana & Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana

PMJJBY (Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana) PMSBY (Pradhan Mantri Surakhsa Bima Yojana)  PMJJBY (Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana) is a life insurance scheme. PMSBY (Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana) is an accidental insurance scheme.  The age limit for PMJJBY (Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana) is minimum 18 years and maximum 50 years. The age limit for PMSBY (Pr

Maharaja Suheldev

Suheldev was a legendary medieval-era warrior-king. He is mentioned in Mirat-i-Masudi. According to the legend, Suhaldev was the eldest son of King Mordhwaj of Shravasti, during the 11th century. Though his historical existence is shrouded in mystery, he is today popular as a caste icon among the Rajbhars (OBC) and the Pasis (second largest Dalit caste in U.P.), both of whom have been competing for his legacy. According to critiques, BJP over the years aggressively tried

New Guidelines for the Geo-Spatial Sector

What is the news? The Ministry of Science and Technology has released new guidelines for the Geo-spatial sector in India. It deregulated the existing protocol and liberalizes the sector to a more competitive field. What is a Geo-Spatial Data? Geospatial data is data about objects, events, or phenomena that have a location on the surface of the earth. The location may be static in the short-term, like the location of a road, an earthquake event, malnutrition among children, o

Leatherback Sea Turtle

It is the largest of the seven species of sea turtles.  Other species are: Olive Ridley turtle, Green turtle, Hawksbill turtle, Loggerhead turtle, Leatherback turtle Except the Loggerhead, the remaining four species nest along the Indian coast. It is found in all oceans except the Arctic and the Antarctic. Within the Indian Ocean, they nest only in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. It is the only living species in the genus Dermochelys and family Dermoc

National Marine Turtle Action Plan

The Ministry of Environment has released National Marine Turtle Action Plan in which A&N Islands are given prominent importance.  According to the plan, India has identified all its important sea turtle nesting habitats as ‘Important Coastal and Marine Biodiversity Areas’.  These areas have been included in the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) – 1. South Bay and West Bay on Little Andaman and Galathea on Great Nicobar, are mentioned as “Important Marin

UAE’s Hope Probe Enters Mars Orbit

The probe took off from the Tanegashima Space Centre in Japan in July, 2020. UAE becomes the fifth entity to reach the Red Planet, joining NASA, the Soviet Union, the European Space Agency and India.  Mission will collect data on Martian climate dynamics and help scientists understand why Mars' atmosphere is decaying into space. Other Missions to Mars: Apart from the UAE’s ‘Hope Probe’, two more unmanned spacecrafts from the USA and Chi

Dickinsonia Fossils Found in Bhimbetka Caves

Researchers discovered three fossils in Madhya Pradesh. These fossils are possibly of the earliest known living animal named ‘Dickinsonia’ (550-million-year-old). The fossils are found on the roof of Auditorium Cave at Bhimbetka Rock Shelters. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Madhya Pradesh. The fossil can be identified from the white leaf-like patches with a central vertebra (central midrib) and connecting veins. These are the only Dickinsonia fossils available in

Ashok Dalwai Committee

The government announced to double farm incomes by 2022 in its Union Budget 2016-17. In line with this it appointed an 8-member inter-ministerial committee headed by Ashok Dalwai, to consider major reforms in agriculture sector. It was tasked to prepare a blueprint for transition of farm policies from being production oriented to based on incomes or value addition.

Humboldt Penguin

Humboldt penguin is named after the cold ocean current, known as Humboldt current (discovered by German explorer Alexander von Humboldt), that is typical for the natural habitat of this species of penguin (west coast of South America). Its habitat is highly influenced by the cold, nutrient-rich Humboldt Current flowing northward from Antarctica, which is vital to the productivity of plankton and krill and fosters fish abundance. Migration: When not raising chicks, these penguins have been

Vembanad Lake

Preliminary steps have been initiated to demolish the illegally constructed villas on Nediyathuruthu island in Vembanad Lake. Vembanad is the longest lake in India and the largest lake in the state of Kerala. Its a salt-water lake. It is the second-largest Ramsar site in India only after the Sundarbans in West Bengal. Kochi Port is built around Willingdon and Vallarpadam Islands on this lake. The Government of India has identified the Vembanad wetland under the National Wetlands Con

Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav

Nodal Ministry: It is a festival started by the Ministry of Culture in the year 2015. Objective: It enhances mutual understanding and bonding between people of diverse cultures. Thereby it secures stronger unity and integrity of India. Participation of Zonal Centres: The festival witnesses the active participation of Seven Zonal Culture Centres. Significance: The festival is instrumental in showcasing folk and tribal art, dance, music, cuisines & culture of one state in ot

NetWire

NetWire, which first surfaced in 2012, is a well-known malware. It is a remote access Trojan which gives control of the infected system to an attacker. Such malware can log keystrokes and compromise passwords. Viruses                          A computer virus is a type of malware that propagates by inserting a copy of itself into and becoming part

Digital Services Tax

Why in news? United States Trade Representative (USTR) reported that India’s DST is discriminatory & inconsistent with international tax principles. What is Digital service tax (DST)? Digital companies are not adequately taxed because they don’t have a physical location in the markets where they operate. DST aims to ensure that non-resident, digital service providers pay their fair share of tax on revenues generated in the Indian digital market. How does India&

Spinal Muscular Atrophy

Spinal muscular atrophy is a rare genetic disease. The person suffering from this disease cannot control the movement of their muscles. Caused By: It is caused by the loss of nerve cells that carry electrical signals from the brain to the muscles. The protein needed for this signaling is coded by a gene. Everyone has two copies of this gene- one from the mother and the other from the father. A child develops this disorder only if both the copies are faulty. Gene Therapy Treatment:&nb

India-China Disengagement

Recently, both India and China have announced the start of disengagement between the two armies in Ladakh. The current disengagement is limited to two places on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh: One, the north bank of Pangong lake Two, Kailash range to the south of Pangong. the disengagement in other regions is yet to be taken. The other three sites of contention on the Ladakh border are Depsang, Gogra-Hot Springs, and Demchok.

Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure

CDRI is to be seen as an international knowledge platform. Here, countries can collaborate to make their existing and new infrastructure strong enough to withstand natural disasters. It tries to bring countries together to share and learn from the one another’s experiences to protect their infrastructure against disasters. The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) is operating as the interim secretariat of CDRI as of now. It is headquartered at Gurugram, India.

Coal Gasification

What is coal gasification?  • Coal gasification is the process of producing syngas [a mixture consisting primarily of methane (CH4), carbon monoxide (CO), hydrogen (H2), carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapor (H2O)],from coal,water, air and/or oxygen. What are its usages? • Currently, this tech is primarily used for electricity generation, for production of chemical feedstocks, or for production of synthetic natural gas. • The hydrogen obtained from coal gasificatio

Fly Ash

Definition: It is a byproduct from burning of coal in electric power generating plants.   It is called fly ash because it is transported from the combustion chamber by exhaust gases. It is collected from the exhaust gases by electrostatic precipitators or bag filters. Composition: Fly ash includes substantial amounts of silicon dioxide (SiO2), aluminium oxide (Al2O3), ferric oxide (Fe2O3) and calcium oxide (CaO). Properties:

Kalaripayattu

Kalaripayattu is a martial art based on the ancient knowledge of the human body. It originated in Kerala during 3nd century BC to the 2nd century AD.  It is now practised in Kerala and in some parts of Tamil Nadu. The place where this martial art is practised is called a 'Kalari'. It is a Malayalam word that signifies a kind of gymnasium. Kalari literally means 'threshing floor' or

World Unani Day

World Unani Day was celebrated on February 11, 2021 to spread awareness about health care delivery through Unani system of medicine through its preventive and curative philosophy. World Unani Day is celebrated every year to mark the birth anniversary of Hakim Ajmal Khan.   He was an eminent Indian Unani physician who was a great scholar, a social reformer, a noted freedom fighter, a Unani medical educationist and founder of scientific research in Unani System of Medicine.  

Mission Organic Value Chain Development for North Eastern Region (MOVCDNER)

Prime Minister Modi initiated a scheme for development of commercial organic farming in the region during 2015 which later became to be known as “Mission Organic Value Chain Development for North Eastern Region” (MOVCDNER) Under MOVCDNER, the FPCs get access to shared infrastructure including collection centres, custom hiring centres, processing infrastructure and packhouses, allowing them to add value to their produce and market them well. The scheme provides end to end supp

Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020

The Bill aims at decentralizing decision making and to infuse professionalism in governance of major ports. It will empower the Major Ports to modernize and expand port infrastructure, and facilitate trade and commerce. Tariff Authority for Major Ports (TAMP) can now fix tariff, which will act as a reference tariff for purposes of bidding for PPP projects. An Adjudicatory Board has been proposed to look into disputes between ports and PPP concessionaires, etc. A simplif

SAKSHAM (Shramik Shakti Manch)

SAKSHAM (Shramik Shakti Manch) is an initiative of Technology Information, Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC). It is a dynamic job portal for mapping the skills of Shramiks (Labourers). It will help in identifying skill proficiency level and development of Skill Cards for Shramiks. It will directly connect Shramiks with MSMEs eliminating middlemen/ labour contractor. It will facilitate placement of 10 lakh blue-collar jobs (pan-India).

Seaweed Mission

Why was this mission launched? Out of the global seaweed production, China produces 57%, Indonesia 28%. Whereas, India is having a mere share of 0.01-0.02%. Purpose:  Under the mission, TIFAC will demonstrate a model for commercial farming of seaweeds, and it’s processing for value addition. It will boost the national economy. Benefits of Cultivating Seaweed: It is estimated that if seaweed cultivation is done in 10 million hectares or 5% of the EEZ

National Atlas & Thematic Mapping Organisation

National Atlas and Thematic Mapping Organization (NATMO) is a subordinate department under the Department of Science & Technology. With it’s headquarter at Kolkata, it is a sole national agency with the responsibility to depict national framework data in the form of thematic maps and atlases to cater the various needs of different sectors. It has the largest repository of spatial and non-spatial data processed with greater accuracy for delivering good quality products. Main fu

Specialty Steel

Specialty Steel (Alloy Steel) contain additional alloyed materials that deliver special properties under specific conditions. Government has approved inclusion of ‘Specialty Steel’ under the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme. This will promote the manufacturing of 'Specialty Steel' within the country to meet the domestic demand by attracting capital investment, generate employment etc.

Meri Saheli Initiative

It was launched as a pilot project by the Railway Protection Force (RPF) across South Eastern Railway for security of women passengers in trains originating in that zone. This initiative has been rolled over to all zonal railways across Indian Railways’ network from October, 2020. Dedicated teams of lady RPF personnel have been formed across all zonal railways for its implementation. Section 58 of the Railways Act, 1989 provides for earmarking of accommodation for female passenger

History of Uttarakhand : From Borderland to Sacred Place

The Artefacts found in the Himalayan foothills are datable to the period extending from 300 BCE and 600 CE include an Ashokan rock edict (at Kalsi), brick altars for conducting ashvamedha yagnas, coin hoards, and sculptures. These developments fostered the growth of Haridwar and Kalsi as cosmopolitan towns and as “gateways” into the Himalayas. The earliest shrines in this tradition were built at Palethi and Lakhamandal, just upstream from Haridwar and Kalsi

Turkey’s space program

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan recently unveiled an ambitious 10-year space program that includes missions to the moon, developing internationally viable satellite systems, and sending Turkish astronauts into space. President Erdogan also informed that Turkey plans on establishing its first contact with the moon in 2023 when the nation will mark the centennial of the founding of the Turkish Republic. However, the critics have questioned the Turkish government’s decision

Petition to Convert INS Viraat into a Museum

The warship has been proposed to be dismantled at the ship-breaking yard at Alang in Gujarat. However, Bombay HC has stayed the order on petition of Envitech to convert maritime museum and a multifunctional adventure centre.

Concern Among People of Lahaul-Spiti After Glacial Outburst in Uttarakhand

The concern is about Tandi project on the Chandra-Bhaga River Basin after Uttarakhand flooding debacle. Other Proposed projects in Lahul-Spiti are Rashil (102 MW), Bardang (126 MW), Miyar (90 MW) and Jispa. Chenab River- Source: It rises in the upper Himalayas in the Lahaul and Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh state.   The river is formed by the confluence of two rivers, Chandra and Bhaga, at Tandi, 8 km southwest of Keylong,&nb

Appe Midi Varieties of Mango

The Appe Midi variety of Mango that nearly went extinct have been conserved by B.V. Subbarao in Shivmoga district of Karnataka. They are mainly found in Western Ghats. They are being presently conserved by India Institute of Horticulture Sciences, Bengaluru.

Strategic Disinvestment Policy for Public Sector Enterprises

The policy, promised as part of the Atma Nirbhar Bharat package, states the government will exit all businesses in non-strategic sectors, with only a ‘bare minimum’ presence in four broad sectors. These strategic sectors are — atomic energy, space and defence; transport and telecom; power, petroleum, coal and other minerals; and banking and financial services. It will help the exchequer stop throwing good money after bad, and funnel it into more productive endeavours.

Capping on Transfats

Trans fat is naturally present in red meat and dairy products. Focus is on restricting the industrially produced trans fat used solely to prolong the shelf life of products to 2% by mass of the total oils/fats present in the product 2022 Repeated use at high temperature can increase the trans fat content. Denmark became the first country to limit industrially produced trans fat content to 2% in 2004.

New Variety of Marigold Developed by IIHR

Indian Institute of Horticultural Research has developed new variety of Marigold named Arka Shubha This variety of marigold can be used for extraction of crude carotene upto 2.8%. Presently, India imports most of its carotene from China The Arka Shubha variety is of use in the poultry sector as well. Its petals could be used as feed to get quality yolk.

MoU for the construction of the Shahtoot dam in Afghanistan

MoU signed recently for construction of the Shahtoot dam to provide drinking water to Kabul. The proposed dam will be on Kabul river basin. It is one of the five river basins in Afghanistan. The dam will provide drinking, irrigation, and Environmental water for Kabul province. This is the second major dam being built by India in Afghanistan, after Salma Dam which was inaugurated in 2016.

PM Modi Invited to Participate in G-7 Dialogue

India has been invited as a special guest at Cornwall, United Kingdom to attend the G-7 grouping meeting. PM Modi may also head over to Brussels to conclude the pending India-EU Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) talks. The talks have been held over issues like market access for automobiles, dairy products, wines and the movement of professionals.

Glacial Lake Outburst Flooding

A glacial lake outburst flooding (GLOF) occurs when a breach in the glacial lake causes a sudden surge downstream. Such lakes are formed when glaciers erode land, melt and over time become a large mass of water in the depression formed, and these can be breached, causing floods downstream. In India the status of glacial lakes is checked by Central Water Commission.

Sri Lanka clears a Chinese energy project 50 kms from Rameshwaram

Sri Lanka govt. has recently cleared a Chinese energy project in 3 islands near to Jaffna peninsula. Sinosoar-Etechwin Joint Venture will be executing the project. These hybrid renewable energy systems projects will be based in Nainativu, Delft and Analaitivu islands located in the Palk Bay. The islands are connected to the Jaffna peninsula a ferry service & are about 50 kms away from Rameshwaram

Russia to launch around 40 satellites from 18 countries in 2021

Russia is set to put into orbit around 40 satellites from over a dozen different countries all over the world using the Soyuz-2 carrier rocket in March 2021. Soyuz-2.1, a carrier rocket with the Fregat booster will blast off with the South Korean CAS500-1 (Compact Advanced Satellite 500) space vehicle from the Baikonur space centre in March, 2021.  

Nanda Devi Glacial Burst in Uttarakhand: Important PT Points

The glacial burst at the Nanda Devi glacier caused flash floods in Dhauliganga & Rishiganga rivers. Tapovan-Vishnugad project located on Dhauliganga river was washed away. While Rishiganga hydel project was located on Rishiganga River. Originating at Vasudhara Tal, a glacial lake in Uttarakhand, the Dhauliganga flows in a meandering course, which takes it through the Nanda Devi National Park. Additional Info About these River Systems: Dhauliganga 

Safe Internet Day

It is organised by the Insafe/INHOPE network of awareness centres, that is spread across 30 countries and is funded by the Connecting Europe Facility program (CEF) of the EU. It aims to increase awareness about emerging online issues, such as cyberbullying, and chooses a topic reflecting current concerns

Kurubas demanding "ST" category in Karnataka

The Kuruba community has been demanding the Schedule Tribe tag and held a massive rally in the outskirts of Bengaluru The Kurubas of Karnataka are a traditional sheep rearing community. They are known by different names in other states, such as Kuruma in Andhra Pradesh, Golla in southern Karnataka, Dhangar in Maharashtra, Pal in Rajasthan, and Maldhari/Gadariya in Gujarat. They subscribe to the teachings of Kanakadasa who was a renowned composer of Carnatic music, poet, philo

Floods in Dhauliganga River Attributed to Climate Change

Glacier retreat, permafrost thaw are being touted as possible reasons for the flooding of Dhauliganga river Environmental experts attributed the Nanda Devi glacial melt to global warming. Glacier retreat and permafrost thaw are projected to decrease the stability of the mountain slopes and increase the number and area of glacier lakes The number and area of glacier lakes will continue to increase and develop closer to steep and unstable mountain walls, where lake outbursts can be more e

Clemency Power of the President & the Governor

TN Governor Banwarilal Purohit has decided that only the President can decide the issue of granting remission to the seven life convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. What the constitution says? Under the Constitution of India (Article 72), the President of India can grant a pardon or reduce the sentence of a convicted person, particularly in cases involving capital punishment. A similar and parallel power vests in the governors of each state under Article 161. I. Presi

FSSAI's Amended Rules on Capping Trans Fats in Food Products

FSSAI has amended rules to cap trans-fatty acids (TFAs) in food products to 2% by 2022 TFA's are mainly found in baked and fried foods, pre-packaged snacks & cooking oils They increase the shelf life of food by lowering their oxidation potential They are less costly than animal fat like butter They increase the bad cholesterol (LDL) and reduce the good cholesterol (HDL) They increase the risk of coronary diseases Earlier in December, 2020 FSSAI capped TFAs in oils and

General Thimaiyya Museum inaugrated at Madikeri by the President

President Ram Nath Kovind inaugrated General Thimayya Museum at Madikeri. He regarded him as one of the India's greatest soldier. He had served as the Chief of Millitary staff between 1957-1961 Additional Info about Madikeri: lies in Western Ghats and is known for its coffee plantations It is also the source for River Cauvery from Baba Budan Hills nearby.

Currency Swap Agreement between SL & India

The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) settled a $400 million currency swap facility from the Reserve Bank (RBI) of India. What is a Currency Swap Facility? The term swap means exchange. Under this agreement, two contracting countries loan each other a specified amount in local currencies. Currency swap agreements involve trade in local currencies, where countries pay for imports and exports at pre-determined rates of exchange without the involvement of a third country currency like

What are Micro Biomes?

Microbiome refers to micro-organisms living inside humans and animals. Eating too much fat and sugar as a child can alter one’s microbiome forever. The balance of useful and harmful components, if disturbed, results in ill-health.

Magnetic fields in plants

A recent study from Germany found that the Venus flytrap (a carnivore) plant is capable of generating small magnetic fields. When the plant sends electrical signals to trigger the closure of its traps, a biomagnetism phenomenon was observed. The trap gets electrically excited due to touch, osmotic energy & even heat and cold.

Budget Announcement for One Person Companies

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced measures to ease norms on setting up one-person companies (OPCs). What is a one-person company? A one-person company is a company that can be formed by just one person as a shareholder How are they different from other companies? These companies are different to private companies which require a minimum of two members to establish. the person and the company are considered separate legal entities. In sole proprietorship, th

IT Act, 2000: Important Provisions vis-a-vis Social Media Regulation

Tackling harmful content such as hate speech, rumours, inflammatory and provocative messages and child pornography need cooperation between technology services companies and law enforcement agencies. Information Technology Act, 2000, as amended from time to time, governs all activities related to the use of computer resources. Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000 It covers all ‘intermediaries’ who play a role in the use of computer resources and electronic reco

Concept of Bad Bank as Proposed in the Budget

Finance Minister in her Budget speech revived the idea of a ‘bad bank’ by stating that the Centre proposes to set up an asset reconstruction company to acquire bad loans from banks. What is a ‘bad bank’? A bad bank is a financial entity set up to buy non-performing assets (NPAs), or bad loans, from banks. The aim of setting up a bad bank is to help ease the burden on banks by taking bad loans off their balance sheets and get them to lend again to customers

Retail Direct Gilt Securities Account for Retail Customers by RBI

The RBI's proposal to provide direct access to retail investors to its government securities investment platform opens the door to this risk-free investment for retailers. Retail investors can now directly open their gilt accounts with the RBI through the 'Retail Direct’ facility to access both the primary market – where investors buy directly from the issuer — and secondary markets where trading takes place among investors. G-secs are debt instruments issued by

Jamtara district, Jharkhand- the Phishing Capital of India

The Jamtara district holds distinction of being the “phishing capital of India”. Many drop-outs of 15-35 age group have been turning to cybercrime to earn a few quick bucks. The place has historical roots as Pandit Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar had once worked through a community library movement here.

Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, 2000

The Government has issued notice to Twitter after it reinstated several handles that mentioned a controversial hashtag on its platform. The Government  issued these orders under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, 2000. This is done in the interest of - sovereignty and integrity of India defence of India, security of the State friendly relations with foreign States public order (or) for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating

Myanmar- Important Points for PT

Biggest Ethnic Population- Bamar people Has been ravaged by Extremely Severe Cyclone Nargis in the past Kyaukphyu port in Myanmar is being developed by China as part of Belt & Road Initiative India & Myanmar are doing multimodal Kaladan project that connects India's North East border with Myanmar's Sittwe Port.

Border Security: ‘Smart walls’ for Indian borders

Border Security: ‘Smart walls’ for Indian borders United States President Joe Biden stopped the construction of the much-publicised “border wall” between the U.S. and Mexico as part of a series of executive actions, in a development that was long-awaited. It was confirmed, however, that an alternative has been offered — a ‘smart’ wall that replaces the physical and armed patrolling with advanced surveillance tech is the proposed future of border

New Metro Rail Projects Proposed in the Budget

FM Nirmala Sitharaman in her budget announcement stated that Metro Lite and Metro-Neo technologies will be deployed to provide metro rail systems in Tier-2 cities and the peripheral areas of Tier-1 cities, at much lesser costs with the same experience, convenience and safety. About Metro Neo Metro Neo is a mass rapid transit system providing low-cost, energy-efficient and eco-friendly urban transport solution for tier 2 and tier 3 cities. Drawing power fr

Global Risks Report 2021 by World Economic Forum

The World Economic Forum (WEF) has released the 16th edition of the Global Risk Report, 2021 based on the Global Risks Perception Survey (GRPS). The Report states that environmental risks continue to threaten the global economy. The top 5 risks it mentions are: extreme weather climate action failure human environmental damage infectious diseases Biodiversity loss where infectious diseases top the list in terms of impact.

National Mission on Biodiversity and Human Well-being

The Government of India has recently launched the National Mission on Biodiversity and Human Well-being. The mission aims to explore the neglected links between biodiversity science and human well-being across the sectors of health, economic development, agricultural production and livelihood generation, in combination with efforts to mitigate climate change and related disasters. One of the components of the mission explicitly links biodiversity to human health through the OneHealth fra

Lingaraj Temple destroyed?

Lingaraj Temple destroyed? About Lingaraj Temple Lingaraja Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva and is one of the oldest temples in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. The Lingaraja temple is the largest temple in Bhubaneswar. The central tower of the temple is 180 ft (55 m) tall. The temple represents the quintessence of the Kalinga architecture and culminating the medieval stages of the architectural tradition at Bhubaneswar. The temple is believed to be built by the kings from t

NH-66 to be redeveloped as an economic corridor

The center has proposed to develop NH-66 as an economic corridor in the recent budget announcement.   NH 66 Runs roughly north–south along the western coast of India  Connects Panvel (a city south of Mumbai) to Cape Comorin (Kanyakumari), Passing through the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Major cities include Panjim, Mangaluru, Kochi  

Ekamra Kshetra Beautification Project

The Orissa government's Ekamra Kshetra beautification project is aimed at creating space around Lingaraj Temple in Bhubaneshwar for the eve of Shivratri in March, 2021. It is a government led project which has recently been mired in controversy due to destruction of ancient monuments nearby. Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage: It is a non-profit charitable organisation registered under the Societies' Registration Act, 1860. It was founded in&

Interest Rate-Growth Differential

"If the interest rate paid by the government is less than the growth rate, then the intertemporal budget constraint facing the government no longer binds."- economist Olivier Blanchard. The “intertemporal budget constraint” means that any debt outstanding today must be offset by future primary surpluses. If the Interest Rate-Growth Differential (IRGD), the difference between the interest rate and growth rate, becomes negative, the governments need not worry about de

Central Reserve Police Force

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is one of the premier Central Armed Police Forces of India (under the Ministry of Home Affairs) for internal security. The other Central Armed Police Forces are as follows: Assam Rifles (AR): The Assam Rifles came into being in 1835, as a militia called the‘Cachar Levy’. Border Security Force (BSF): Responsible for guarding India's land borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh. Central Industria

East Container Terminal

Sri Lanka has withdrawn it's proposal to let India & Japan build her East Terminal Container near the capital city of Colombo. What is the Project? The tripartite agreement, signed by India, Sri Lanka and Japan, proposes to develop the ECT, which is located at the newly expanded southern part of the Colombo Port. The ECT is located 3 km away from the China-backed international financial city, known as Port City, currently being built in Colombo. A Chinese company was be

Jal Jeevan Mission (Urban) 2.0 to revive urban water bodies

The urban water supply mission under the Jal Jeevan Mission announced in the Budget would include rejuvenation of water bodies as well as 20% of supply from reused water. Jal Jeevan Mission Jal Jeevan Mission, a central government initiative under the Ministry of Jal Shakti, aims to ensure access of piped water for every household in India. The mission’s goal is to provide to all households in rural India safe and adequate water through individual household tap connections by 20

Aatmanirbharta named Oxford Hindi Word of the Year 2020

Aatmanirbharta has been named by Oxford Languages as its Hindi word of the year 2020. The Oxford Hindi word of the year is a word or expression that is chosen to reflect the ethos, mood, or preoccupations of the passing year, which have lasting potential as a term of cultural significance. Aatmanirbharta', which means self-reliance, came into the limelight when Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged to make India an Atmani

SpaceX to launch first all-civilian astronaut mission in late 2021

SpaceX recently announced on that it will be launching four private individuals on a Crew Dragon Capsule into orbit around Earth. The mission is dubbed ‘the world’s first all-civilian mission’. The mission known as Inspiration4 aims at raising the support for Children’s Research Hospital. On the conclusion of Inspiration4 mission, Dragon, the spacecraft will be re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere for soft water landing off the coast of Florida.

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