Flash-Cards-for-IAS-Prelims-2018-CA-Day-29
70 Days WAR Plan

Day#29 Current Affairs Flash Cards [70 Days WAR Plan]

Voyager; Saturn's rings; ICAT Certificate; Partners’ Forum 2018; Women Entrepreneurship Platform; First global conference on 'Sustainable Water Management’ in India; Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) 2019; KALIA (Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation) scheme; Exercise Sea Vigil; ‘Clean Sea - 2018’; Indian Coast Guard (ICG); Bogibeel bridge;
By IT's Core Team
April 19, 2019

 

 

 

India’s longest rail-cum-road bridge – Bogibeel bridge is constructed over the Barak River. Right or Wrong?

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Answer:

  • Wrong

Right Statement:

  • India’s longest rail-cum-road bridge – Bogibeel bridge is constructed over the Brahmaputra river.

Enrich Your Learning:

Bogibeel bridge:

  • Prime Minister inaugurated the country’s longest rail-cum-road bridge over the Brahmaputra river at Bogibeel near Dibrugarh in Assam.
  • It is 4.94-km-long double-decker bridge.

Importance:

  • The 4.9-km bridge will cut down the train-travel time between Tinsukia in Assam to Naharlagun town of Arunachal Pradesh by more than 10 hours.
  • Connecting north part of Assam to Dibrugarh city of south Assam, the road will provide connectivity from north Assam to Dibrugarh for the first time.
  • The bridge will make Itanagar in Arunachal Pradesh easily accessible from Dibrugarh.
  • The road distance from Dibrugarh to Itanagar will be reduced by 150 km and the railway travel distance between these two points will shorten by 705 km.
  • The strategically important bridge, which begins at Dibrugarh and ends at Dhemaji districts of Assam, will remove communication bottlenecks to several districts of Arunachal Pradesh.
  • The Bogibeel Bridge, which was a part of the Assam Accord and sanctioned in 1997-98, is also likely to play a crucial role in defence movement along the India-China border in Arunachal Pradesh.
  • The bridge will enhance the national security of the eastern region by facilitating swift movement of defence forces and their equipment.
  • It was constructed in such a way that even a fighter jet can land on it in case of emergency.
  • The biggest advantage of the bridge will be easy movement of troops from southern to northern bank.

 

 

 

Recently which Space agency confirms that the Saturn is losing its iconic rings at the maximum rate?

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Answer:

  • A new National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) research confirms that Saturn is losing its iconic rings at the maximum rate.

Enrich Your Learning:

  • The rings are being pulled into Saturn by gravity as a dusty rain of ice particles under the influence of Saturn’s magnetic field.
  • Voyager 1 & 2 observations made decades ago and that has given an estimated loss rate of Saturn’s rings.
  • The new research favours the latter scenario, indicating that they are unlikely to be older than 100 million years, as it would take that long for the C-ring to become what it is today assuming it was once as dense as the B-ring.

Voyager Observation:

  • The first hints that ring rain existed came from Voyager observations of seemingly unrelated phenomena; peculiar variations in Saturn’s electrically charged upper atmosphere (ionosphere), density variations in Saturn’s rings, and a trio of narrow dark bands encircling the planet at northern mid-latitudes.
  • These dark bands appeared in images of Saturn’s hazy upper atmosphere (stratosphere) made by Nasa’s Voyager 2 mission in 1981.
  • The influx of water from the rings, appearing at specific latitudes, washed away the stratospheric haze, making it appear dark in reflected light, producing the narrow dark bands captured in the Voyager images.

Saturn’s rings:

  • Saturn’s rings are mostly chunks of water ice ranging in size from microscopic dust grains to boulders several yards (meters) across.
  • Ring particles are caught in a balancing act between the pull of Saturn’s gravity, which wants to draw them back into the planet, and their orbital velocity, which wants to throw them outwards into space.
  • As the planet progresses in its 29.4-year orbit, the rings are exposed to the Sun to varying degrees.
  • Since ultraviolet light from the Sun charges the ice grains and makes them respond to Saturn’s magnetic field, varying exposure to sunlight should change the quantity of ring rain.

 

 

 

Clean Sea – 2018, the Regional Level Marine Oil Pollution Response Exercise was conducted by?

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Answer:

  • Clean Sea – 2018, the Regional Level Marine Oil Pollution Response Exercise was conducted by the Indian Coast Guard.

Enrich Your Learning:

‘Clean Sea – 2018’:

  • The Indian Coast Guard has conducted the Regional Level Marine Oil Pollution Response Exercise titled ‘Clean Sea – 2018’ at sea off Port Blair.

Objective:

  • To ascertain preparedness of the Indian Coast Guard, resource agencies and other stakeholders in responding to a major oil spill in line with the provisions of NOS-DCP (National Oil Spill Disaster Contingency Plan).

Indian Coast Guard (ICG):

  • The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) is an armed force that protects India’s maritime interests and enforces maritime law, with jurisdiction over the territorial waters of India, including its contiguous zone and exclusive economic zone.
  • The Indian Coast Guard was formally established in 1978 by the Coast Guard Act, 1978 of the Parliament of India as an independent Armed force of India.

Missions of Indian Coast Guard:

  • Safety and protection of artificial islands, offshore terminals and other installations
  • Protection and assistance to fishermen and mariners at sea
  • Preservation and protection of marine ecology and environment including pollution control
  • Assistance to the Department of Customs and other authorities in anti-smuggling operations
  • Law enforcement in territorial as well as international waters
  • Scientific data collection and support
  • National defence during hostilities (under the operational control of the Indian Navy)

 

 

 

Recently, the first coastal defence Exercise Sea Vigil has concluded. It was conducted by whom?

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Answer:

  • The first coastal defence Exercise Sea Vigil was conducted by Indian Coast Guard and Indian Navy.

Enrich Your Learning:

Exercise Sea Vigil:

  • The first coastal defence Exercise Sea Vigil, conducted by the Navy and Coast Guard, in close coordination with State Governments and Union Territories concluded.
  • It was the largest such exercise the country had ever witnessed in recent times and saw participation by more than 100 ships, aircraft and patrol boats manned and operated by various security agencies.
  • The conduct of the exercise is being facilitated by the Ministries of Defence, Home Affairs, Shipping, Petroleum and Natural Gas, Fisheries, Customs, State Governments and other central and state agencies.
  • The aim of the exercise is to provide a realistic assessment of our strengths and weakness and this will certainly help further strengthening of maritime security and in turn national security.
  • Sea Vigil conducted by Indian Navy and assisted by all stakeholders will facilitate in establishing shortfalls, working out new ways to optimise resources, recommend solutions to higher authorities and refine Standard Operating Procedures.

The exercise had commenced and comprised two distinct phases:

  • In the first phase, all stakeholders assessed the robustness of their own organisations.
  • During the second phase, simulated attacks were carried out on vital installations and assets by infiltrating through the sea, in Kerala and Lakshadweep.

 

 

 

What is the KALIA scheme all about?

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Answer:

  • The KALIA scheme will provide financial, livelihood, cultivation support along with insurance support to small, marginal and the landless farmers by the government of Odisha.

Enrich Your Learning:

KALIA (Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation) scheme:

  • The government of Odisha has launched the KALIA scheme, which would benefit about 92% of the farmers in the State.
  • KALIA scheme is a package for farmers’ welfare. KALIA stands for “Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation”.
  • This scheme has been launched to accelerate agricultural prosperity and elimination of poverty.
  • The scheme will provide financial, livelihood, cultivation support along with insurance support to small, marginal and the landless farmers.
  • The farmers will get their entitlement of ₹5,000 under KALIA for purchase of seeds, fertilizers and insecticides twice a year — once for kharif season and for rabi season.
  • This scheme has come into effect from the ongoing (2018-19) Rabi season.

Beneficiaries:

  • All small and marginal farmers along with landless agricultural households, vulnerable agricultural household, landless agricultural labourers and sharecroppers/actual cultivators are eligible under different components of KALIA.

Benefits:

  • Small and marginal farmers: Financial aid of Rs. 25,000 per farm family over five seasons will be provided to small and marginal farmers so that they can purchase seeds, fertilizers, pesticides and use assistance towards labour.
  • Landless agricultural household: Financial assistance of Rs 12500/ will be provided to each landless agricultural household for agricultural allied activities such as goat rearing, small layer poultry units, duckery units, fishery kits for fishermen, mushroom cultivation, bee-keeping and so on.
  • Vulnerable cultivators/landless agricultural laborers: The vulnerable cultivators/landless agricultural laborers will get financial assistance of Rs 10,000 per family per year to enable them to take care of their sustenance.
  • The cultivator/landless agricultural laborers who are in old age, having disability/ disease and are vulnerable for any other reason will benefit from the scheme. Five lakh families will be covered every year.
  • Life Insurance Support to cultivators and Landless agricultural labourers as well as the interest free crop loan component are meant for all category of beneficiary under KALIA scheme.

The KALIA scheme includes a life insurance cover of Rs 2 lakh and additional personal accident coverage of the same amount for 57 lakh households. Crop loans up to Rs 50,000 are interest-free.

 

 

 

The Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) published by which institute?

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Answer:

  • The CCPI is annually published by Germanwatch, the New Climate Institute and the Climate Action Network.

Enrich Your Learning:

The Climate Change Performance Index

  • The Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) 2019 shows that only few countries have started working towards limiting global warming below 2°C or even at 1.5°C.

About CCPI:

  • The Climate Change Performance Index is an instrument supposed to enhance transparency in international climate politics.
  • Its aim is to encourage political and social pressure on those countries which have, up to now, failed to take ambitious actions on climate protection as well as to highlight countries with best-practice climate policies.
  • On the basis of standardised criteria, the index evaluates and compares the climate protection performance of 56 countries and the EU that are, together, responsible for nearly 90 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.
  • 80 percent of the evaluation is based on objective indicators of emissions, renewable energy and energy use.
  • 20 percent of the index results are built upon national and international climate policy assessments by about 300 experts from the respective countries.

Global Performance as per CCPI 2019:

  • The Index of 2019 shows, Sweden leads the ranking, followed by Morocco and Lithuania.
  • Eight of the G20-countries performed very low. The bottom five in this year’s CCPI are Saudi Arabia, the United States, Islamic Republic of Iran, Republic of Korea and Chinese Taipei, scoring low or very low across almost all categories.
  • This ranking results are defined by a country’s aggregated performance regarding 14 indicators within the four categories “GHG Emissions”, “Renewable Energy” and “Energy Use”, as well as on “Climate Policy”, in a globally unique policy section of the index.
  • The CCPI 2019 results illustrate the main regional differences in climate protection and performance within the 56 evaluated countries and the EU.
  • No country performed well enough to reach the ranking very good in this year’s index, meaning that no country has yet made it to one of the top three places in the rankings.

India’s Performance as per CCPI 2019:

  • India moved to 11th rank from last year’s 14 position by improving its standing in three places compared to the previous edition.
  • Most notably India improved its performance in the renewable energy category, joining the group of medium performers.
  • Comparatively low levels of per capita GHG emissions and a relatively ambitious mitigation target for 2030 give India an overall high rating in the emissions category.
  • Global carbon dioxide emissions are rising again but India’s ranking has improved by three points.

 

 

 

What is the aim of the global conference organized by India on ‘Global Sustainable Water Management’?

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Answer:

  • The Conference aims at initiating and encouraging international dialogue between nations for the promotion and development of sustainable strategies for water resource management.

Enrich Your Learning:

First global conference on ‘Sustainable Water Management’ in India:

  • First International Conference on Sustainable Water Management is being organized by of National Hydrology Project, Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation by Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) at Indian School of Business (ISB), Mohali.
  • The theme of conference is ‘Sustainable Water Management’.
  • This Conference is the first in the series, being organized in India.

Aim & Objectives:

  • The aim of the Conference is to foster the participation of and dialogue between various stakeholders, including governments, the scientific and academic communities to promote sustainable policies for water management, to create awareness of water-related problems, motivate commitment at the highest level for their solution and thus promote better management of water resources at local, regional, national and international levels.

 

 

 

Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) is an initiative of which national body/organization?

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Answer:

  • The Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) is an initiative by NITI Aayog.

Enrich Your Learning:

Women Entrepreneurship Platform:

  • The Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) is a first of its kind, unified access portal which brings together women from different parts of India to realize their entrepreneurial aspirations.
  • The initiative is aimed at building an ecosystem for women across India to realize their entrepreneurial aspirations, scale-up innovative initiatives and chalk-out sustainable, long-term strategies for their businesses.

Aim & Objectives:

  • WEP aims to address the bottlenecks faced by both aspiring and established women entrepreneurs by streamlining information across government and private sector schemes and initiatives.
  • The platform aspires to substantially increase the number of women entrepreneurs who will create and empower a dynamic New India.
  • These aspirations are manifest in the three pillars on which WEP is built:
    • Ichha Shakti – motivating aspiring entrepreneurs to start their enterprise
    • Gyaan Shakti – providing knowledge and ecosystem support to women entrepreneurs to help them foster entrepreneurship
    • Karma Shakti – providing hands-on support to entrepreneurs in setting-up and scaling up businesses

WEP 2.0

  • The WEP seeks to transform the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the country and is a one-stop resource centre for future and budding women entrepreneurs.
  • It seeks to act as a medium for various stakeholders in the economy to come together and offer integrated services such as Incubation Support, Mentorship, Funding avenues, Compliance, Marketing Assistance etc.

Women Transforming India Award:

  • The NITI Aayog has organized the Third Edition of the Women Transforming India Awards 2018 and launched the upgraded portal of the Women Entrepreneurship Platform.
  • NITI Aayog set up this awards to promote and support established as well as aspiring women entrepreneurs in India.
  • The Women Transforming India Awards were instituted, in collaboration with United Nations, to recognise and celebrate stories of exemplary women from across India.
  • This year’s theme is “Women and Entrepreneurship” and fifteen winners have been chosen through an extensive six-month long process to identify fascinating and inspiring stories of women entrepreneurs.

 

 

 

What is the Partners’ Forum, recently appeared in news?

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Answer:

  • Partners’ Forum is a global health partnership launched in September 2005 to accelerate efforts to reduce child and maternal mortality, improve adolescent, child, new-born and maternal health.

Enrich Your Learning:

Partners’ Forum 2018:

  • The Partners’ Forum 2018 is co-hosted by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Partnership of Maternal, New-born and Child Health (PMNCH).
  • The two-day event brings together more than 1200 participants from 85 countries in New Delhi, to deliberate on issues of health and well-being of women, children and adolescents.
  • It will also emphasize the importance of people- centred accountability bringing forward the voices and lived realities of women, children and adolescents through innovative programming and creative projects.
  • This partnership is an alliance of more than 1,000 plus members, across 10 constituencies in 92 countries: academic, research and teaching institutions; donors and foundations; health care professionals; multilateral agencies; non-governmental organizations; partner countries; global financing mechanisms and the private sector.

Specific goals of the Partners’ Forum include:

  • Greater political momentum, sustaining attention to the “Survive-Thrive-Transform” agenda of the Global Strategy, and its contribution to driving the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The voices of women, children and adolescents will be central to our messaging and framing.
  • Knowledge exchange, through sharing of lessons learned and best practices to innovate and improve implementation strategies for results. The rigorously produced “Success Factors” case studies (selected from more than 300 partner-led proposals) will anchor this effort.
  • Improved cross-sectoral collaboration through knowledge exchange and joint advocacy strategies.

Forum highlights:

  • Launch of a special “Partners’ Forum” issue of the British Medical Journal (BMJ), with 12 “Success Factor” case studies, highlighting best practices and innovations taken to scale for improving women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health;
  • Online interactive programming and dialogue through a multi-channel virtual broadcast paired with interactive discussion formats;
  • Film, music, animation and other creative arts to express the voice of women and girls, and what they want for their own reproductive and maternal health.

About ‘Partnership for Maternal, New born & Child Health’ (PMNCH):

  • It is an alliance of more than 1000 organizations in 192 countries from the sexual, reproductive, maternal, new-born, child and adolescent health communities, as well as health influencing sectors.
  • The Partnership provides a platform for organizations to align objectives, strategies and resources, and agree on interventions to improve maternal, new-born, child and adolescent health.
  • The Partnership’s role complements the work and accountability processes of its individual members, enabling them to deliver more collectively than they would alone.
  • This Partner-centric approach mobilizes, engages and empowers different implementing partners.
  • It allows them to coordinate their actions and activities, and encourages and promotes mutual accountability.
  • The Partnership is governed by a Board, and administered by a Secretariat hosted at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland.

 

 

 

ICAT Certificate was recently in news. What is it all about?

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Answer:

  • The International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT), Manesar has launched the certification of vehicle and components with high security features.
  • This is a first of its kind initiative taken by any automotive certification agency in India for enhancing the security of the Central Motor Vehicle Rules (CMVR) certificates which include Type Approval Certificates (TAC) and Conformity of Production (COP) Certificates for vehicles, engines and components.

Enrich Your Learning:

Features of ICAT certificate:

  • The new ICAT certificate format consists of nine new and unique security features incorporated in the certificate.
  • The most important security feature is the paper itself on which the certificate is to be printed as it is a special paper which is made especially according to ICAT’s specific requirements.
  • The unique features in the certificate includes:
    • High security paper,
    • Printing using the ultraviolet ink,
    • Troy mark,
    • Microprint,
    • Pantograph,
    • Reverse pantograph,
    • Secure code,
    • Print code,
    • Digitally printed stamp,
    • Seal of ICAT.
  • While some of the security features are generic in nature same for all the certificates, the other features are specific for each certificate.
  • Another distinction is that some of the features are visible only through ultraviolet light. The certificates will be printed using special printers which have been imported by ICAT for this very purpose.

About ICA

  • The International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) is the premier certification agency authorised by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways for providing testing and certification services to the vehicle and component manufacturers situated within India and abroad.
  • In addition to the certification services, ICAT provides extensive testing services for product development and validation.

 

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