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ARTICLES

ARTICLES

ARTICLES

Q. Why is this in news ?A.  Air quality index (AQI) of Delhi slipped into ‘very poor’ category while some parts of the city saw AQI turn ‘severe’. As of 2pm, the overall AQI was 370 and eight out of 36 monitoring stations were in the ‘severe’ category, with most severely affected areas being North Delhi.Real-time air quality monitoring data from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) showed that particulate matter of 2.5 and 10 micrometres (PM2.5, PM10) were the prominent pollutants at the three highly polluted areas. Read More...

  Oct 31, 2020   Bio-diversity, Environment

Q. Why is this in news ?A. Over the last one week, residents of Assam and Mizoram have clashed twice over territory, injuring at least eight people and torching a few huts and small shops. It spotlights the long-standing inter-state boundary issues in the Northeast, particularly between Assam and the states that were carved out of it.Q. What were the recent clashes about?On Saturday, residents of Lailapur village in Assam’s Cachar district clashed with residents of localities nea... Read More...

  Oct 31, 2020   Polity

Q. Why is this in news ?A. The Centre is working on a plan to restrict the number of fertiliser bags that individual farmers can buy during any cropping season. Q. What is fertiliser subsidy?Farmers buy fertilisers at MRPs (maximum retail price) below their normal supply-and-demand-based market rates or what it costs to produce/import them.The MRP of neem-coated urea, for instance, is fixed by the government at Rs 5,922.22 per tonne, whereas its average cost-plu... Read More...

  Oct 31, 2020   Economy

Q. Why is this in news?We may have a Covid-19 vaccine by this year itself, with about eight candidates nearing the end of late-stage clinical trials, but getting the shots delivered safely to different countries and then finally to hospitals and pharmacies is set to be the next challenge.Since different Covid-19 vaccines require different temperatures and different handling procedures, cold chain facilities, including equipment and procedures used in transport and storage, are a critical aspect before they are ... Read More...

  Oct 28, 2020   Health

Q. Why is this in news ?A. Over the last one and half months, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has conducted at least 12 tests of missiles or systems for missiles belonging to a vast spectrum of ranges and purposes. Some more tests are said to be in the pipeline. These tests have taken place at the time when there is an ongoing stand-off between the Indian and Chinese forces along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Ladakh region.Q. What are the various tests that the DRDO conducted recently? Read More...

  Oct 28, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why does air pollution rise in October each year?October usually marks the withdrawal of monsoons in Northwest India. During monsoons, the prevalent direction of wind is easterly. These winds, which travel from over the Bay of Bengal, carry moisture and bring rains to this part of the country. Once monsoon withdraws, the predominant direction of winds changes to north westerly. During summers, too, the direction of wind is north westerly and storms carrying dust from Rajasthan and sometimes Pakistan and Afghanistan. According to a peer reviewed study conducted by scientists at the National Physical Lab... Read More...

  Oct 27, 2020   Bio-diversity, Environment

Q. Why is this in news?Mount Everest or Sagarmatha, Earth’s highest mountain above sea level, is located in the Himalayas between China and NepalAlmost a year after China and Nepal together decided to re-measure the elevation of the world’s highest mountain, the two countries are soon expected to announce its latest official height, the Nepali Times reported.Mount Everest or Sagarmatha, Earth’s highest mountain above sea level, is located in the Himalayas between China and Nepal -– the border between them running across its ... Read More...

  Oct 27, 2020   International Relations

Q. Why is this in news?The indigenously developed laser-guided version of the Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM) was successfully test fired by the Defence Research and Development Organisation on two separate occasions recently.The indigenously developed laser-guided version of the Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM) was successfully test fired by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) on two separate occasions recently and will undergo more validation tests in coming days before it is ready for the user trials. We look at the imp... Read More...

  Oct 26, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news? The first of the five seaplane services in Gujarat, connecting Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad to the Statue of Unity in Kevadia in Narmada district, will be inaugurated on October 31, the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.Officials say Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to fly in the first 14-seater amphibian flight that will eventually be open to the public. The other spots are, Dharoi dam in Mehsana district, to connect Ambaji and Shatrunjay dam in Palitana of Bhavnagar district as w... Read More...

  Oct 26, 2020   Current Affairs

Q. Why is this in news? Recently, China made an unexpected announcement that ensured that there was no lack of climate change excitement this season. Speaking at the UN General Assembly, Chinese President Xi Jinping made two promises that came as a welcome surprise to climate change watchers.Q. What has China announced?First, Xi said, China would become carbon net-zero by the year 2060. Net-zero is a state in which a country’s emissions are compensated by absorptions and removal of greenhouse gases fro... Read More...

  Oct 26, 2020   Current Affairs

Q. Why is this in news?Over the years, scientists have suggested different ways to ward off more serious threats, such as blowing up the asteroid before it reaches Earth, or deflecting it off its Earth-bound course by hitting it with a spacecraft.Once every few days, news headlines announce the approach of a new asteroid towards Earth, and social media platforms become abuzz with panicky users talking about doomsday scenarios.Asteroid 465824 2010 FR, “twice as big as the Pyramid of Giza” and expected to cross th... Read More...

  Oct 26, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. What IMF data say about the per capita GDP of India and Bangladesh?Global growth is projected to contract 4.4 per cent, an upward revision of 0.8 per cent from its June update, the IMF said.International Monetary Fund’s (IMF’s) latest projection of Bangladesh’s real per capita GDP surpassing India’s real per capita GDP, after India had a lead of 25 per cent five years ago, is shocking, and calls for “bold fiscal/monetary policy”.Q. What do the IMF data show?... Read More...

  Oct 24, 2020   Economy

Q. Why is this in news?A new study on variability in the Mascarene High (MH) in the Southern Indian Ocean during global warming hiatus (GWH) has revealed that the region experienced significantly increased sea surface temperature (SST) during this period (1998-2016).Q. What is Global Warming Hiatus (GWH)?A global warming hiatus is referred to a global warming pause, or a global warming slowdown, which is a period of relatively little change in globally averaged surface temperatures.T... Read More...

  Oct 24, 2020   Bio-diversity, Environment

Q. Why is this in news? Last week, a special CBI court convicted Dilip Ray, Minister of State for Coal in the A B Vajpayee government in 1999, for his alleged involvement in the coal block allocation scandal. Hearings on the quantum of Ray’s sentencing are set to begin, While convicting him, the court observed that Ray “abused his official position”, as his decision of “relaxation of policy without any logical or legal basis amounts to gross abuse of his powers by the minister”.Q. Why it is significant? Read More...

  Oct 23, 2020   Current Affairs

Q. Why is this in news? Recently, a rocket system meant to take tourists to space successfully completed its seventh test launch after it took off from a test facility in Texas. Called New Shephard, the system is built by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’s space company called Blue Origin and will eventually allow space tourists to experience microgravity by taking them over 100 km above the Earth.In 2018, Blue Origin was one of the ten companies selected by NASA to conduct studies and advance technologies to collect, process and use space-based resources for missions ... Read More...

  Oct 23, 2020   Science and Technology

Q. Why is this in news? On Monday, Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson unveiled fresh restrictions due to Covid-19. The three-tier system is to help manage the rising cases across the country. The guidelines for the three alert levels — medium, high and very high — will be debated in the House of Commons Tuesday and will depend on the outcome of the vote. If approved by Parliament, they will come into effect from Wednesday onward.Q. What do the new rules propose?Areas across Britain wi... Read More...

  Oct 22, 2020   International Relations

Q. Why is this in news? Due to an event referred to as “opposition”, which takes place every two years and two months, Mars will outshine Jupiter, becoming the third brightest object (moon and Venus are first and second, respectively) in the night sky during the month of October.This year, while Mars’ closest approach to Earth was on October 6, the opposition will happen on October 13, which will give the planet its “biggest, apparent size of the 2020s”, according to NASA.Mars’s next close approach will happen on De... Read More...

  Oct 22, 2020   Geography

Q. Why is this in news? This year marks the 60th anniversary of the Indus Water Treaty (IWT) between India and Pakistan, a treaty that is often cited as an example of the possibilities of peaceful coexistence that exist despite the troubled relationship. Well-wishers of the treaty often dub it “uninterrupted and uninterruptible”. The World Bank, which, as the third party, played a pivotal role in crafting the IWT, continues to take particular pride that the treaty functions.The role of India, as a responsible upper riparian abiding by the provisions of the tre... Read More...

  Oct 21, 2020   Geography

Q. Why is this in news? Eight beaches in India have been awarded the coveted ‘Blue Flag’ certification by an eminent international jury, which comprises members of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).The beaches selected for the certification are: Kappad (Kerala), Shivrajpur (Gujarat), Ghoghla (Diu), Kasarkod and Padubidri (Karnataka), ... Read More...

  Oct 21, 2020   Bio-diversity, Environment

Q. Why is this in news? Starting October 15, some stricter measures to fight air pollution will come into force in Delhi and its neighbouring National Capital Region (NCR) towns, as part of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP). The action plan has been in effect for three years in Delhi and NCR.Starting October 15, diesel generator sets can no longer be used in Delhi and the NCR towns of Noida, Ghaziabad, Greater Noida, Faridabad, and Gurgaon. The only exception is DG sets used for emergency and essential services.Pollution c... Read More...

  Oct 20, 2020   Bio-diversity, Environment