Comprehensive News Analysis – 24 July 2016

Table of Contents:

A. GS1 Related:
B. GS2 Related:

1. Sushma thanks Afghan govt., Indian envoy

2. Govt. to assess Model Village Scheme running out of steam

3. India, U.S. to train African troops for U.N. peacekeeping

C. GS3 Related:

1. Feather in the cap: India home to 12% of world’s bird species

2. ISRO ready for air-breathing propulsion experiment

3. Ministry asks operators not to levy extra charge on containers

4. G20 nations pledge to bolster defences against Brexit headwinds

D. GS4 Related
E. Important Editorials : A Quick Glance
F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
G. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
H. Archives

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Useful News Articles

A. GS1 Related

Nothing here today folks!

 

B. GS2 Related
1. Sushma thanks Afghan govt., Indian envoy Topic: Bilateral agreements involving India, Indian Diaspora Category: International Relations Location: The Hindu Key points:

  • External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Saturday lauded the efforts of India’s Ambassador to Afghanistan.
  • The Ambassadors efforts were largely instrumental in securing the release of Judith D’Souza, an Indian aid worker.
  • Sushma Swaraj also thanked the Afghan government for ensuring her safe release.
  • The Centre had deployed all its resources to secure her release.

 

2. Govt. to assess Model Village Scheme running out of steam Topic: Government policies and interventions for development Category: Polity and Governance Location: The Hindu Key points:

  • The government is gearing up to assess the efficacy of one the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY).
  • Less than 100 MPs have adopted a second village under the programme.
  • SAGY was launched in October 2014
  • Prime Minister Modi, himself first adopted the village, Jayapur and later the village Nagepur in his Lok Sabha constituency of Varanasi.

Under the Scheme:

  • Under the scheme MPs were to be responsible for developing the socio-economic and physical infrastructure of one Adarsh Gram, or model village, by 2016, two more by 2019, and one in each of the following five years.

Reasons for not taking off

  • A common complaint has been the fact that no separate funds have been made available for programmes undertaken under the SAGY.
  • Government departments such as health and human resource development have not been able to provide money for specific schemes.
  • MPs have been asked to use money allocated to 21schemes including Indira Awaas Yojana for rural housing, Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana and Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao.
  • The two primary areas in which villages are still lagging behind are school infrastructure and drinking water facilities.

 

3. India, U.S. to train African troops for U.N. peacekeeping Category: International Relations Topic: Bilateral agreements involving India Location: The Hindu Key points:

  • India and the U.S. will jointly train troops from African countries in the entire gamut of the United Nations Peace Keeping (UNPK) operations.
  • This move is seen as yet another joint effort as part of the growing bilateral relations.
  • It will be jointly undertaken by India’s Centre for United Nations Peace Keeping (CUNPK) and the Global Peace Operations Initiative of the US.
  • It is a pilot project between India, the U.S. and Africa. It is a three dimensional one concerning India’s long standing ties with Africa, growing India-U.S. cooperation and India’s commitment to peacekeeping.
  • The countries chosen are those African nations contributing maximum troops to the U.N. and the 21-day training programme has been modelled on the lines of the U.N.
  • There are about 40 officers from eight counties and a contingent from the African Union.
  • The instructors mostly from India and some from the U.S. will train officers from African countries as trainers who in turn would train soldiers back home in their respective countries.
  • India has so far as participated in 42 missions and sent about 1,80,000 personnel.
  • The U.S. on the other hand has never contributed ground troops but has been the major source of funds for the U.N. peace keeping missions.
C. GS3 Related

 

1. Feather in the cap: India home to 12% of world’s bird species Category: Environment and Ecology Topic: Biodiversity Location: The Hindu Key points:

  • A group of ornithologists have come up with the first definitive checklist of Indian birds, putting the number of species across the country at 1,263.
  • Among the 1,263 species, Himalayan Forest Thrush (Zoothera salimalii) is the newest species discovered to science, while White-browed Crake (Amaurornis cinerea) is the latest entry to the country’s bird list.
  • Though Indian ornithology is 300 years old, we still do not know how many species of birds are exactly known to occur in India.

 

2. ISRO ready for air-breathing propulsion experiment Category: Science and Technology Topic: Science and Technology- developments, Space Location: The Hindu Key points:

  • ISRO is looking forward to performing “an experiment” before July-end aboard its RH-560 rocket.
  • This rocked would be fitted with a supersonic combustion ramjet (scramjet) engine for demonstrating air-breathing propulsion technology.
  • At three tonnes, the two-stage RH-560, christened Advanced Technology Vehicle (ATV), is the heaviest sounding rocket built by the ISRO.
  • The Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), Thiruvananthapuram, has developed the engine.

Future Prospects

  • The scramjet bid is a move towards faster, cheaper, better rockets; if it works, an eventual launch vehicle using a scramjet engine can be very reliable compared to conventional rocket systems that use liquid or cryogenic systems.
  • If the experiment is successful, it will be a stepping stone for the ISRO to achieve low-cost access to space.
  • It means reducing the cost per kg of payload when a launch vehicle is used to put a satellite into orbit.
  • The current cost is in the range of $15,000-$25,000 for a kg of a satellite.
  • Air-breathing engines will bring down this cost drastically.

How are Air-breathing engines different?

  • Air-breathing rocket systems use the atmospheric oxygen from their surroundings and burn it with the stored on-board fuel for producing the forward thrust in contrast to the conventional chemical rocket systems which carry both the oxygen and the fuel onboard.
  • As a result, the air-breathing systems become much lighter and more efficient, leading to reduced overall costs.
  • A limitation however is that air-breathing engines can operate only during the atmospheric flight phase.

 

3. Ministry asks operators not to levy extra charge on containers Category: Economy Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports Location: The Hindu Key points:

As per regulation of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) and notification by the DG Shipping, Ministry of Shipping concerning the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) of containers, it has been made mandatory from July 1, 2016 for all shippers to declare the weight of the containerised consignment.

Why this regulation?

  • This is to ensure that containers are not overloaded and to prevent accidents while loading, unloading and during transit on sea and road routes.
  • Earlier, in the absence of any such rule, exporters used to overload containers resulting in fatal accidents, including sinking of ships.
  • As the new rule was imposed, two private terminals by APM Terminal and DP World started weighing all containers. They even levied extra charges on containers which were found to be overloaded or underweight than the declared number.
  • Since this ‘weighment’ caused widespread resentment among the exporters and shipping lines, the DG Shipping stepped in to clarify its notification which was allegedly misinterpreted by the private terminal operators to levy the extra fee.

 

4. G20 nations pledge to bolster defences against Brexit headwinds Category: Economy Topic: International Trade Location: The Hindu

  • Top policymakers said that the world’s leading economies will do more to lift global growth and share the benefits more broadly.
  • This comment comes in light with their efforts to deal with the fallout from Britain’s Brexit vote and counter dissatisfaction with globalisation.

Important Statements Made

  • U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said it was important for G20 countries to boost shared growth using all policy tools, including monetary and fiscal policies as well as structural reforms, to boost efficiency.
  • Chinese Finance Minister Lou Jiwei called for more coordination to promote sustainable growth, as fiscal and monetary tools were becoming less effective.
  • German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said it should not fall to other countries to spend more to try to cushion the blow of Britain’s exit.
D. GS4 Related

Nothing here today folks!

E. Important Editorials: A Quick Glance

Nothing here today folks!

 

F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
  • International Maritime Organisation (IMO)
  • Scramjet
  • G20
  • Brexi
  • Himalayan Forest Thrush
  • White-browed Crake

Tags

  • Tags: Afghan government, Judith D’Souza
  • Tags: Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY), Indira Awaas Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao
  • Tags: Himalayan Forest Thrush, White-browed Crake
  • Tags: ISRO, Scramjet
  • Tags: International Maritime Organisation (IMO), Verified Gross Mass (VGM)
  • Tags: Brexit, G20
G. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
Question1: Consider the following statements regarding "International Maritime Organization",
  1. Its main role is to create a regulatory framework for the shipping industry that is fair and effective, universally adopted and universally implemented.
  2. IMO currently has 171 Member States and three Associate Members.

Which of the above are correct? (a) 1 Only (b) 2 Only (c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 2: Consider the following statements, regarding "G20",
  1. G20 was initiated in 1999 and consists of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Republic of Korea, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union (EU).
  2. The Headquarters of the G20 is in Cancún, Mexico

Which of the above are correct? (a) 1 Only b) 2 only (c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 3: Consider the following statements regarding ‘Scramjet’ engine,
  1. The ‘Scramjet’ engine can help move towards faster, cheaper, better rockets.
  2. The current cost is in the range of $15,000-$25,000 for a kg of a satellite. Air-breathing engines will bring down this cost drastically.
  3. An eventual launch vehicle using a scramjet engine can be very reliable compared to conventional rocket systems that use liquid or cryogenic systems.

Which of the above statement(s) is/are correct? (a) 1 and 2 only (b) 2 and 3 Only (c) All, 1, 2 and 3 (d) Neither 1 nor 2 nor 3

Question 4: Consider the following statements regarding, "Indira Awaas Yojana", 
  1. Aim of Indira Awaas Yojana is to provide financial assistance to the rural poor living Below the Poverty Line (BPL) for construction of a house.
  2. BPL rural households of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, nonScheduled Castes & non-Scheduled Tribes, Ex-servicemen of the armed & paramilitary forces killed in action, physically & mentally challenged persons, freed bonded labourers & Minorities are eligible to get assistance under Indira Aawas Yojana.

Which of the above statement(s) is/are correct? a) 1 only b) 2 only c) Both 1 and 2 d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 5: Consider the following statements, 
  1. A group of ornithologists have come up with the first definitive checklist of Indian birds, putting the number of species across the country at 1,263.
  2. Among the 1,263 species, Himalayan Forest Thrush (Zoothera salimalii) is the newest species discovered to science, while White-browed Crake (Amaurornis cinerea) is the latest entry to the country’s bird list.
  3. Though Indian ornithology is 300 years old, we still do not know how many species of birds are exactly known to occur in India.

Which of the statements is/are correct? (a) 1 only (b) 2 and 3 only (c) All 1, 2 and 3 (d) None of these

Check Your Answers

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