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ARTICLES

ARTICLES

ARTICLES

Q. Why is this in news ?A. The European Space Agency (ESA) has formally adopted Ariel, the explorer that will study the nature, formation and evolution of exoplanets. As of now the existence of more than 4,000 exoplanets is considered confirmed, while there are thousands of other candidate exoplanets that need further observations to say for certain if they are exoplanets.Proxima Centauri b is the closest exoplanet to Earth and is four light-years away and inhabits the “habitable zone” of its star, which means that it could possibly have liquid water on its surface. Read More...

  Nov 24, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news? Recently Karnataka govt announced that they will soon declassify 6.64 lakh hectares of the 9.94 lakh hectares of deemed forests in the state (nearly 67%) and hand it over to Revenue authorities. The move has been taken after a study of the actual extent of deemed forest areas by local committees headed by officials from the Revenue, Forest and Land Records Departments in every district.The issue of deemed forests is a contentious one in Karnataka, with legislators across party lines often alleging that large amoun... Read More...

  Nov 24, 2020  

Q. Why is this in news? While the virus that causes COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, does spread through respiratory droplets from one person to another, it has been up for debate whether droplets, including tiny aerosols, containing the virus remain suspended in the air for a long enough period of time.When researchers investigated the ventilation openings in one COVID-19 ward and the central ducts that expel indoor air from three COVID-19 wards, they were able to detect SARS-CoV-2 in central ventilation systems, which were distant from patient areas, implying tha... Read More...

  Nov 23, 2020   Health

Q. Why is this in news ?A. 15 countries solidified their participation in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). Even as India opted to stay out after walking out of discussions last year, the new trading bloc has made it clear that the door will remain open for India to return to the negotiating table.Q. What is RCEP?Described as the ... Read More...

  Nov 23, 2020   Economy

Q. Why is this in news? The Leonid meteor showers are currently making their yearly appearance, and will reach their peak in India on November 17 and 18, according to Norway-based website timeanddate.com. In 2020, these showers are active from November 6th to November 30th.The Leonids emerge from the comet Tempel-Tuttle, which requires 33 years to revolve once around the Sun. These meteors are bright and among the fastest moving– travelling at speeds of 71 km per second. During this year’s showers, peaks of around 10 to 15 meteors are expected to be seen every... Read More...

  Nov 22, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news?As part of NASA’s first commercial human spacecraft system in history, a crew of four astronauts is now en route to the International Space Station (ISS) on a 27-hour flight, onboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft called Resilience.The mission was to launch on November 14 initially, but was impeded by unfavourable weather conditions. Crew-1 is the first operational flight of the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft on a Falcon 9 rocket to the ISS and is also the first of the three such flights scheduled over the course of 2020-21. Read More...

  Nov 22, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news ?A. Recently, the isolated UK Overseas Territory of Tristan da Cunha, which is home to the world’s most remote human settlement, declared the largest fully protected marine reserves in the Atlantic Ocean at 687,000 square kilometres. This will close over 90 percent of their waters to harmful activities such as bottom-trawling fishing, sand extraction and deep-sea mining.UK prime minister Boris Johnson said, “I am now calling on other nations to join us in our ambition to protect 30 per cent of the world’s ocean by 2030. We ne... Read More...

  Nov 21, 2020   Bio-diversity, Environment

Q. Why is this in news?In its latest monthly bulletin — for November — the Reserve Bank of India has dedicated a chapter on the “State of the economy”. The idea is to provide a monthly snapshot of some of the key indicators of India’s economic health. “By doing so, a hallowed tradition that began with the first issue of the Bulletin in January 1947, but interrupted during the period 1995 to date, will be revived,” the bulletin said.As part of the exercise, the RBI has started “nowcasting” or “the prediction of the present or the very near future of ... Read More...

  Nov 21, 2020   Economy

Q. Why is this in news?Recently, the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) has released the Draft Data Centre Policy, which aims to simplify clearances for setting up data centres in the country.Q. What is the vision of the Draft Data Centre Policy?Making India a Global Data Centre hub,Promote investment in the sector,Pro... Read More...

  Nov 20, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news? The government announced several measures to boost job creation, provide liquidity support to stressed sectors, and to step up investment in housing and infrastructure sectors.The Finance Ministry extended the deadline for the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) — under which collateral-free government-guaranteed additional credit is given to MSMEs — until March 31, 2021.In light of the increased crop sown area, an additional Rs 65,000 crore are being provided as fert... Read More...

  Nov 20, 2020   Current Affairs

Q. Why is this in news?Haryana government is considering a law against forced religious conversions and has sought information about such a law already in force in Himachal Pradesh. It is in the backdrop of the recent murder of woman outside her college in Faridabad’s Ballabhgarh.Last year, the Himachal Pradesh assembly passed the Freedom of Religion Bill, 2019.Q. What is the Himachal Pradesh anti-conversion law? Read More...

  Nov 19, 2020   Current Affairs

Q. Why is this in news?The government aims to expand the ambit of the production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme to include as many as ten more sectors such as food processing and textiles other than the already included mobile phones, allied equipment, pharmaceutical ingredients and medical devices. Apart from cutting down on imports, the PLI scheme also looks to capture the growing demand in the domestic market.Q. What is the production linked incentive scheme?In order to boost domestic manufacturing and cut ... Read More...

  Nov 19, 2020   Economy

Q. Why is this in news? On November 14, SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft will lift off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre in Florida carrying a crew of four people to the International Space Station (ISS) on a six-month-long mission.Significantly, just ahead of the mission, on Tuesday, NASA certified SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule and the Falcon 9 rocket, making it the first spacecraft certification provided by the space agency. This means SpaceX can now operate regular flights to the space station.Boeing and SpaceX were selecte... Read More...

  Nov 18, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. What is the Maritime Cluster project?The concept of maritime cluster is new to India, but these clusters have been driving some of the most competitive ports of the world like Rotterdam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Oslo, Shanghai, and London.Simply put, a maritime cluster is an agglomeration of firms, institutions, and businesses in the maritime sector that are geographically located close to each other.The Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB), a nodal agency of the Gujarat government, has been trying to develop such a cluster at GIFT City in ... Read More...

  Nov 18, 2020   Current Affairs

While novel coronavirus is undergoing many mutations, one particular mutation called D614G, according to a study, has become the dominant variant in the global COVID-19 pandemic. Q. What is the D614G mutation?When the virus enters an individual’s body, it aims at creating copies of itself. When it makes an error in this copying process, we get a mutation. In this case, the virus replaced the aspartic acid (D) in the 614th position of the amino acid with glycine (G). Hence the mutation is called the D614G. This mutated form... Read More...

  Nov 17, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news? The Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, also known as Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib, is located in Pakistan's Narowal district across river Ravi, about five kilometres from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India's Punjab.The Pakistan government’s decision to transfer the management and administrative control of the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur from a Sikh body — Pakistan Sikh Gurudwara Prabhandhak Committee (PSGPC) — to a trust under the Evacuee Trust Property Board, a non-Sikh body, has inviting sharp reactions from India, whi... Read More...

  Nov 17, 2020   Art & Culture

Q. Why is this in news ?A.   NASA has reported that on April 28, it observed a mix of X-ray and radio signals never       observed before in the Milky Way. Significantly, the flare-up it observed included the first fast radio burst (FRB) seen within the galaxy.Three papers reporting the detection of the phenomenon called FRB were published in the journal Nature on November 4. Q. Who discovered the simultaneous bursts in the Milky Way?The X-ray portion of the ... Read More...

  Nov 16, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news ?A. As the US election verdict remains inconclusive with key swing states still individually counting votes, a look at how the world’s oldest democracy counts their votes, and the reason behind the delay in the results.Q. How are elections supervised in the US?In the US, all elections — federal, state, and local — are directly organised by the ruling governments of individual states. According to the White House website, the US Constitution and laws grant the state... Read More...

  Nov 16, 2020   International Relations

Q. Why is this in news ?A. The Election Commission (EC) has revoked the status of a veteran leader and former Madhya Pradesh CM as a star campaigner for the party.Q. Who is a Star Campaigner?A star campaigner can be described as persons who are nominated by parties to campaign in a given set of constituencies.These persons are, in almost all cases, prominent and popular faces within the party.There is no specific definition according to law or the Election Comm... Read More...

  Nov 15, 2020   Polity

Q. What are Discoms ?A.  Discom stands for ‘Distribution Company’. Discoms are the companies that are responsible for the distribution the electricity to the consumers. These do not produce electricity, they buy the electricity from the producers and then sell it to consumers. Q. What are important role played by DisComs? Distribution Companies (DisComs) are the utilities that typical... Read More...

  Nov 15, 2020   Economy