Current Affairs Analysis

20th February 2016 Current Affairs Analysis

By IT's Current Affairs Analysis Team
February 20, 2016


Polity & Governance

  • Licence agreements for commercialisation of Ayush 64 & Ayush 82

International Relations

  • India and Armenia Sign MoU on Agriculture Cooperation

Art & Culture

  • Karnataka HC issues notice to state on Kambala

Science & Technology

  • GSLV-MkIII on course as cryo engine passes big test

Polity & Governance

Licence agreements for commercialisation of Ayush 64 & Ayush 82


The Union government has entered into License Agreements with Dabur India Ltd for commercialisation of malaria and diabetes drug Ayush 64 and Ayush 82 respectively.         

  • The agreement was signed between the National Research Development Corporation (NRDC), an Enterprise of the Department of Scientific & Industrial Research, Ministry of Science & Technology and Dabur India Ltd. 
  • The drugs Ayush 64 and Ayush 82 were developed by Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS), New Delhi, an autonomous body of the Ministry of AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga and naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy). 

About Ayush-64

  • The Ayurvedic Drug Ayush-64is very effective for the treatment of Malaria which is one of the most prevalent; destructive widely spread disease, well known to Ayurvedic Physicians as Visama Jvara from ancient times.
  • In view of its wide prevalence and drug resistant malarial parasite, a poly-herbal non-toxic drug has been developed by CCRAS after carrying out extensive pharmacological, toxicological and Clinical studies.

About Ayush-82

  • Ayush-82 is an ayurvedic Formulation for management of Diabetes.
  • Ayush-82 is an anti diabetic drug also developed by CCRAS is a combination of known and tested hypoglycemic drugs.

The use of these two drugs would help millions of people suffering from Malaria and Diabetes.

[Ref: PIB, BS]


International Relations


India and Armenia Sign MoU on Agriculture Cooperation


India and Armenia have signed an agreement for cooperation in the field of agriculture sectors.

The MoU envisaged various priority sectors such as

  • Plant-breeding, including agricultural crop seed-breeding and plant protection;
  • Buffalo-breeding and poultry, including pedigree;
  • Exchange of experience on agricultural organization in dry lands;
  • Milk production and processing;
  • Development of new forms of farming in agrifood complex;
  • Agrarian education, training for agricultural specialists;
  • Exchange of experience in irrigation and water management (rain water)
  • Phytosanitary measures during export and import of plant and plant materials etc.

The MoU provides for establishment of Joint Working Group and preparation of Work Plans, and will be valid, initially for a period of five years, and would be extendable beyond five.

[Ref: PIB]


Art & Culture


Karnataka HC issues notice to state on Kambala


The Karnataka High Court has admitted a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India seeking an end to Kambala.

  • After hearing the matter, the HC issued notices seeking responses of the state government and other respondents in the PIL including the Animal Welfare Board of India and district committees of Kambala in Udupi and Dakshina Kannada districts.


  • The ministry of animal husbandry and fisheries, government of Karnataka in December, 2015 issued an order permitting Kambala events despite a 2014 Supreme Court judgment that categorically held that such events are inherently cruel, violate the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act, 1960 and hence cannot be allowed.
  • The High Court had said that there was no “scientific report to access whether Kambala amounts to cruelty as per the provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act.”
  • Later, a three-member expert committee gave its view on Kambala and pointed out that basically Kambala does not involve any violence on animals and instances like beating of buffaloes are preventable through proper education and disqualification for such acts.

PETA’s arguments:

  • The PETA claims that Kambala is similar to Jalikattu and bullock-cart race, which were banned by the apex court as well as the notification issued by the Centre in July 11, 2011.
  • The PETA also questions the report of the expert committee while contending that the report did not contain scientific assessment of welfare of buffaloes, besides failing to take note of the cruelty inflicted on buffaloes for forcing them to participate in the race.

About Kambala:


Kambala is an annual Buffalo Race held traditionally under the auspices local land lords and households or Patel of village, in coastal Karnataka, India.

Key facts:

  • The Kambala season generally starts in November and lasts until March.
  • The ‘track’ used for Kambala is a paddy field filled with slush and mud.
  • The contest generally takes place between two pairs of buffaloes, each pair raced in wet rice fields, controlled by a whip-lashing farmer.
  • People place massive bets on the buffaloes to win and one can witness more than 20,000 spectators in a well-organised Kambala, egging on and cheering the buffaloes to complete the race.
  • In traditional form of Kambala, racing is non-competitive, and buffalo pairs run one by one in paddy fields.
  • A ritualistic approach is also there, as some agriculturists race their buffaloes for thanks giving (to god) for protecting their animals from diseases.
  • Innovations are made in conducting kambala race and in some places day and night races are arranged under floodlights.[5]

Kadri Kambala used to be held at Kadri, Mangalore and it is called Devara Kambala (God’s kambala) as it is associated with Sri Manjunatha Temple, Kadri, Mangalore.

[Ref: Hindu, Wiki]


Science & Technology


GSLV-MkIII on course as cryo engine passes big test


In a major milestone, ISRO has successfully conducted hotbed test of the indigenously developed high-thrust cryogenic engine (CE20) of the GSLV Mark 3 (LVM3) rocket for the upper stage.

Key facts:

  • The long-duration test was conducted at ISRO Propulsion Research Centre at Mahendragiri, Tamil Nadu and lasted for 640 seconds.
  • It was conducted with Mixture Ratio Controller (MRC) in a closed loop mode.
  • It has been developed indigenously by Mahendragiri based Liquid Propulsion System centre (LPSC).
  • The CE20 uses Liquid Hydrogen at -253 degrees C and Liquid Oxygen at -193 degrees C as propellants and generates power of approximately 2 MW.

About GSLV Mk III:

  • The GSLV Mk. III launch vehicle is an evolved version of India’s Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle developed and operated by the Indian Space Research Organization.
  • The GSLV project was initiated in the 1990s when India determined that the country needed its own launch capability for Geosynchronous Satellites to become independent from other launch providers.
  • GSLV Mk III is conceived and designed to make ISRO fully self reliant in launching heavier communication satellites of INSAT-4 class, which weigh 4500 to 5000 kg.
  • It would also enhance the capability of the country to be a competitive player in the multimillion dollar commercial launch market.
  • GSLV-Mk III is designed to be a three stage vehicle.
  • The GSLV-III features an Indian cryogenic third stage and a higher payload capacity than the current GSLV.

[Ref: Hindu, Wiki]



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