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ARTICLES

ARTICLES

ARTICLES

The N.K. Singh panel to review India’s fiscal discipline rules has recommended: Debt-to-GDP ratio of 38.7% for the central government, 20% for the state governments together by financial year 2022-23 Fiscal deficit of 2.5% of GDP (gross domestic product) by financial year 2022-23 Enacting a new Debt and Fiscal Responsibility Act after repealing the existing Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act Creating a fiscal council In 2016-17 debt-to-GDP ratio for the central government was 49.4% fiscal deficit at 3.5% of GDP The government is hoping to e... Read More...

  Aug 18, 2017   General Category

Act passed in Lok Sabha The Motor Vehicles (Amendments) Act 2016 was passed in the Lok Sabha on April 10. Context The commitment to reduce road traffic deaths by 50% is certainly a laudable objective. In fact, road traffic accidents have been recognised as a serious problem at the national level and Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has been issuing policy statements and announcing programmes to address the rapidly growing safety problem since the revision of the Motor Vehicle Act (MVA) in 1988. Read More...

  Aug 15, 2016   General Category

What is the Internet of Things (IoT) ? The internet of things or as it’s also known, IoT isn’t new: tech companies and pundits have been discussing the idea for decades. At its core, IoT is simple: it’s about connecting devices over the internet, letting them talk to us, applications, and each other. It scales up to include smart cities – think of connected traffic signals that monitor utility use, or smart bins that signal when they need to be emptied – and industry, with connected sensors for everything from tracking parts to monitoring crops. Is it safe? Can the internet of things be secu... Read More...

  Aug 12, 2017   General Category

That the bilateral ties between the two South Asian neighbours have been on an upward curve is beyond denial. This is manifest in the fact that between 2010 and now there has been four exchanges of visits at the level of heads of government. Each has been laced with cordiality, warmth and fond utterances for each other. It is not surprising, therefore, that this relationship, rooted as it is in history and conditioned by geography, finds its rightful place at the top of the foreign policy agenda in Bangladesh and a priority one in India. The two major issues that drew most attention in the build-up to the visit were a ... Read More...

  Aug 11, 2017   General Category

The recent World Economic Forum’s (WEF’s) travel and tourism competitiveness index, showed that India had moved up 12 places and now ranks 40th among 136 nations globally. The report also noted that this was the largest leap made by any country in the top 50, thereby making India, with its rich and diverse cultural heritage and natural beauty, a prime candidate to lead the so-called Asian century in travel and tourism. The numbers tell a complex story. On the one hand, foreign tourist arrivals have been on an upward tra... Read More...

  Aug 09, 2017   General Category

The government of India has sought to effectively prohibit cattle slaughter across the country through rules made under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. Though the rules do not explicitly ban slaughter, they ban the sale and purchase of cattle for slaughter at agricultural markets and therefore, in effect, are attempting to put an end to all kinds of cattle slaughter across the country. It is a constitutional misadventure on multiple grounds involving fundamental rights, separation of powers and federalism. Laws It was the Indian Parliament that enacted The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 (the Act) and that legislation empo... Read More...

  Aug 08, 2017   General Category

PKVY is an elaborated component of Soil Health Management (SHM) of major project National Mission of Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA). Under PKVY Organic farming is promoted through adoption of organic village by cluster approach and PGS certification. The Scheme envisages: Promotion of commercial organic production through certified organic farming. The produce will be pesticide residue free and will contribute to improve the health of consumer. It will raise farmer's income and create potential m... Read More...

  Aug 05, 2017   General Category

Gujarat has retained the first position in marine fish landing in the country. Among the fish varieties, Mackerel, the national fish, topped the catch list but sardine declined considerably. The county’s marine fish catch registered a slight increase of 6.6% in 2016 compared to the previous year as reported by the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) in Kochi. The total marine fish landings for 2016 was 3.63 million tonnes, with Gujarat remaining at the top for the fourth consecutive year followed by Tamil Nadu. Kerala, with its vast coastline, for the first time dropped out of the top three and ranked fourth behind Karnataka. Read More...

  Aug 02, 2017   General Category

NITI Aayog announced the launch of the schemes Lucky Grahak Yojana and the Digi-धन Vyapar Yojana to give cash awards to consumers and merchants who utilize digital payment instruments for personal consumption expenditures. The scheme specially focuses on bringing the poor, lower middle class and small businesses into the digital payment fold. It has been decided that National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) shall be the implementing agency for this scheme. It would be useful to reiterate that NPCI is a not for profit company which is charged with a r... Read More...

  Aug 01, 2017   General Category

History The Brahmos missile is developed by a joint-venture between Russia’s Mashinostroyenia and India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). The name Brahmos is a portmanteau of the Brahmaputra and the Moskva rivers. About BRAHMOS is a two-stage missile with a solid propellant booster engine as its first stage which brings it to supersonic speed and then gets separated. The liquid ramjet or the second stage then takes the missile closer to 3 Mach speed in cruise phase. Stealth technology and guidance system with advanced embedded software provides the missile with s... Read More...

  Jul 30, 2017   General Category

  Odisha has become the first state for implementation of green climate project. Green Climate Fund has sanctioned first ever proposal of India submitted by NABARD. The project “Ground water recharge and Solar Micro Irrigation to ensure food security and enhance resilience in vulnerable tribal areas of Odisha” aims to respond to climate change challenges resulting in drought and floods affecting the food security of agriculture dependent vu... Read More...

  Jul 29, 2017   General Category

  It is the process of adding geographical identification like latitude and longitude to various media such as a photo or video.  Geotagging can help users find a wide variety of location-specific information from a device. It provides users the location of the content of a given picture. Geomapping is a visual representation of the geographical location of geotagged assets layered on top of map or satellite imagery Read More...

  Jul 27, 2017   General Category

In the World Bank’s (WB) 2017 Doing Business ranking, India stands at the 130th place in a list of 190 nations—just a spot higher than in the 2016 rankings. A curious case is being made that higher rankings do not really imply good economic outcomes such as higher foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows or higher gross domestic product (GDP) growth. Ease of Doing Business Concept The ease of doing business rank is a stock concept: It represents the reforms that a country has undertaken on various issues like infrastructure, legal systems, etc., over a couple of decades or ev... Read More...

  Jul 26, 2017   General Category

Bhadla village on the fringes of the Thar Desert about 200 km from Rajasthan's famed Jodhpur city is the heart of India's clean energy push, home to the Bhadla Solar Park. A recent auction of solar power to be generated at a new 250 megawatt plant was recently auctioned for just about Rs. 2.62 for every unit, or kilowatt-hour. This would be among India's cheapest sources of power, certainly a lot cheaper than the average tariff of Rs. 3.2 per unit for coal-fired thermal units. Once the solar park is fully operational it will generate 2,255 megawatts of power.... Read More...

  Jul 25, 2017   General Category

Each year a specific aspect of water is highlighted while observing International World Water Day (March 22); this year’s theme was “wastewater”, which is defined as any water that has been adversely affected in quality by anthropogenic influences and as a result of domestic, industrial, commercial and agricultural activities. In recent decades, population growth, accelerated urbanisation and economic development have resulted in an increase in the quantity of wastewater and the overall pollution load being generated. Most of our freshwater sources are under threat. When public awareness of pollution is limited, the ... Read More...

  Jul 23, 2017   General Category

The IVF question Harsha Chawda, India’s first test-tube baby was born in 1986. In vitro fertilization (IVF), the technique used then, has since gone on to prove a blessing for several infertile couples. However, at the time of inception, this technique faced much criticism. The objections ranged from the ethical—disrupting natural life processes—to concerns about the fate of unwanted or unused embryos generated during the process, and possible social stratification due to the then excessive financial costs of the procedure. Read More...

  Jul 22, 2017   General Category

Status: Vulnerable (IUCN)   Habitat and Distribution The preferred habitat of an Indian Rhinoceros is alluvial flood plains and areas containing tall grasslands along the foothills of the Himalayas. Formerly, extensively distributed in the Gangetic plains, today the species is restricted to small habitats in Indo- Nepal terai and North Bengal, and Assam. In India rhinos are found in Kaziranga, Orang, Pobitara, Jaldapara, Dudhwa. Conservation Challenges For years, rhinos have been widely slaughtered for their horn, a prized ingredient in traditional Asian medici... Read More...

  Jul 21, 2017   General Category

The long-pending joint venture between India and Russia to manufacture 200 Kamov-226T light-utility helicopters for around $1 billion (over Rs 6,500 crore) is now finally set to kick off. The JV is between defence PSU Hindustan Aeronautics and Russian companies. Overall, the armed forces urgently need 484 light choppers to replace their obsolete single-engine Cheetah Chetak fleets. Under the agreement, the first 60 choppers will come from Russia, while the rest will be manufactured in India over nine years. The twin-engine Kamov-226Ts are multi-role helicopters. It can undertake reconnaissance, patrol and disaster relief opera... Read More...

  Jul 20, 2017   General Category

Climate change is melting permafrost soils that have been solid for thousands of years, and as the soils melt they have the potential to release ancient viruses and bacteria that may be capable of springing back to life. The most recent discovery of an ancient virus came when French and Russian scientists investigated a 30,000-year-old piece of Siberian permafrost. Pithovirus In a paper published in 2014 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, scientists had discovered a new “giant virus” that they named Pithovirus sibericum. Giant viruses are so-called because they are much larger than traditional vir... Read More...

  Jul 19, 2017   General Category

The Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) has successfully tested lithium-ion batteries developed by the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre for use in two- and three-wheelers, a development that is expected to provide a fillip to India’s electric vehicles (EV) push. Electric Vehicles (EV) programme The government is now planning to transfer the technology to companies for commercial production of these batteries, and will also set up a central agency to lead the country’s EV programme. India’s initiatives on solar ene... Read More...

  Jul 18, 2017   General Category