About: Emergency use authorisation (EUA) or Emergency License

About: Emergency use authorisation (EUA) or Emergency License Vaccines, like medicines, require the approval of a regulatory authority before they can be administered to people.In India, the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) is the national regulatory body for Indian pharmaceuticals and medical devices.The final approval is granted only after the completion of the trials and evaluation … Continue reading About: Emergency use authorisation (EUA) or Emergency License

About: Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA)

About: Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) was enacted in 2005 providing a legal right to employment for adult members of rural households.It aims at addressing causes of chronic poverty through the 'works' (projects) that are undertaken, and thus ensuring sustainable development. Core objectives: Providing not less than 100 days … Continue reading About: Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA)

Factory of the world Editorial 28th Nov’20 TimesOfIndia

Global efforts at diversifying supply chains: Global companies have stepped up efforts of diversifying their supply chains in the wake of the Covid-19-induced disruptions and US-China trade tensions.They are looking to implement the ‘China Plus One’ strategy i.e., not depending on China alone for any supplies, and looking for more locations.For example, large companies like … Continue reading Factory of the world Editorial 28th Nov’20 TimesOfIndia

About: Foreign Exchange Reserves

About: Foreign Exchange Reserves Foreign exchange reserves are the foreign currencies held by a country's central bank.The reserves in India are managed by the Reserve Bank of India for the Indian government and the main component is foreign currency assets. Reserve Bank of India accumulates foreign currency reserves by purchasing from authorized dealers in open market operations. Reserve … Continue reading About: Foreign Exchange Reserves

Kartarpur corridor

Headline : Kartarpur corridor Background The Kartarpur Sahib corridor was first proposed in 1999 when Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee took a bus ride to Lahore, as a long-standing demand from the Sikh community for easy access to the revered shrine across the border where Guru Nanak spent the last 18 years of his life. In … Continue reading Kartarpur corridor

About Quantum computers

About Quantum computers In 1950s quantity of information for the first time were expressed in terms of the number of “bits”. The bits, the 0s and 1s of binary code, are the basis of all conventional computing to store information. 0s and 1s are represented in the form of electric charges. In ordinary computers, charge is stored, … Continue reading About Quantum computers

Higher Education: ‘Destination India’ for foreign students Editorial 16th Nov’20 FinancialExpress

Not many overseas students are studying in India: The higher education sector in India remains inwardly oriented, that is, most of the students in Indian colleges and universities are Indians.India has not been able to attract many foreign students in Indian higher education institutions. Statistics on overseas students in India for higher education: Out of … Continue reading Higher Education: ‘Destination India’ for foreign students Editorial 16th Nov’20 FinancialExpress

In focus: Ultima Thule

In focus: Ultima Thule Introduction Ultima Thule is a small rocky and icy trans-Neptunian planetesimal in the Kuiper belt about 30 km in radius. Planetesimal is one of many small solid celestial bodies thought to have existed at an early stage in the development of the solar system Ultima Thule belongs to a class of Kuiper belt … Continue reading In focus: Ultima Thule

About: Pfizer Vaccine

BNT162b2 is a vaccine that has been developed using mRNA technologye. it makes use of the messenger RNA molecules that tell cells what proteins to build.The mRNA, in this case, is coded to tell the cells to recreate the spike protein of the novel coronavirus.The coronavirus spike protein is a molecular machine that facilitates the entry of coronavirus into host … Continue reading About: Pfizer Vaccine

About: India’s agricultural exports

About: India's agricultural exports Agricultural exports are extremely important as the exports help farmers/producers/exporters to take advantage of wider international market and increase their income.Exports have also resulted in increased production in agriculture sector by increasing area coverage and productivity.Giant strides have been made in agri export since independence.In 1950-51, India’s agri export was about … Continue reading About: India’s agricultural exports

About: Earth observation satellites

About: Earth observation satellites Earth observation satellites are used for land and forest mapping and monitoring, mapping of resources like water or minerals or fishes, weather and climate observations, soil assessment and geospatial contour mapping.Data from Earth-observation satellites are in great demand, both from government agencies, which need it for planning and infrastructure development, as well as … Continue reading About: Earth observation satellites

What is CrispR?

What is CrispR? CRISPR stands for “clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats”. It is a method of DNA editing more efficient than ones available. CRISPR uses an enzyme called Cas9 to cut strands of DNA at precisely targeted locations. This allows one to insert new genetic material into the gap. CRISPR promises to revolutionize gene editing in … Continue reading What is CrispR?

About Kalpana Lajmi

About Kalpana Lajmi Kalpana Lajmi was a critically acclaimed filmmaker who focused on social issues concerning women. She was one of the earliest feminist filmmakers in Indian cinema. Her body of work covered issues ranging from patriarchy, sexuality and gender, domestic violence to transgender and prostitution. Noted works Lajmi debuted in the film industry in 1977 … Continue reading About Kalpana Lajmi

About: Bulk drugs or APIs

What is a bulk drug park and why Himachal wants one In News Himachal Pradesh (HP) is one of the states trying to get an allotment of a bulk drug park under the central government bulk drug park scheme.The HP government has identified around 1,400 acres in Una district and sent a proposal to the Centre.Several … Continue reading About: Bulk drugs or APIs

About: Indo-Pacific

In recent years, the term ‘Indo-Pacific’ has become widely resonant in the geo-strategic discourse.Geographically, the Indo-Pacific refers to the Indian and the Pacific Oceans between the east coast of Africa and the American west coast and their several littoral countries.However, there are slight differences in what various countries perceive as the geographical spread of "Asia-Pacific".While … Continue reading About: Indo-Pacific

About Stem Cells

About Stem Cells The most basic unit of any organism is a cell. It is the smallest unit of life that can function independently and perform all the necessary functions of life. Cells develop to form tissues which inturn develop to form organs. Further broadly speaking, cells are of two types, differentiated and undifferentiated. Differentiated … Continue reading About Stem Cells

About Snakebite envenoming

About Snakebite envenoming Snakebite envenoming is a potentially life-threatening disease that typically results from the injection of a mixture of different toxins (“venom”) following the bite of a venomous snake. Envenoming can also be caused by venom being sprayed into a person’s eyes by certain species of snakes that have the ability to spit venom … Continue reading About Snakebite envenoming

What do you mean by Non-performing asset (NPA). Enumerate the major factors behind accumulation of non-performing assets in the Indian banking sector in recent years.

Approach Introduce with NPAsExplain various factors causing NPAs.Suggest way forward to deal with NPA Model Answer  A non performing asset (NPA) is a loan or advance for which the principal or interest payment remained overdue for a period of 90 days. The higher is the amount of non-performing assets (NPAs), the weaker will be the … Continue reading What do you mean by Non-performing asset (NPA). Enumerate the major factors behind accumulation of non-performing assets in the Indian banking sector in recent years.

What is an e-cigarette?

What is an e-cigarette? E-cigarette is a battery-powered device which vaporizes a liquid solution containing water, flavorings, propylene glycol and vegetable glycerol. E-cigarette are also called electronics nicotine delivery  system (ENDS) They are considered as a healthier smoking alternative as they do not contain carbon monoxide or tar.   Arguments in favour of the ban … Continue reading What is an e-cigarette?

About Zika virus

About Zika virus Zika belongs to a group of viruses called the flaviviruses, which includes dengue, West Nile and yellow fever. Zika virus infect and replicate inside the cells of several species, including humans, monkeys, and mosquitoes.   History of Zika Zika was first isolated from a monkey in the Zika forest of Uganda in 1947. The … Continue reading About Zika virus

Personality: Atal Bihari Vajpayee

Headline : Personality: Atal Bihari Vajpayee Details : About Atal Bihari Vajpayee Atal Bihari Vajpayee was an Indian politician who thrice served as the Prime Minister of India, first for a term of 13 days in 1996, for a period of eleven months from 1998 to 1999, and then for a full term from 1999 to 2004. … Continue reading Personality: Atal Bihari Vajpayee

Basics: Black holes in theory

Basics: Black holes in theory General theory of relativity and Black holes Einstein completely revolutionized the idea of space and time in his general theory of relativity. Accordingly, space and time is not something that is static, monotonous and unchanging as imagined in Newtonian physics. The general theory of relativity describes gravity entirely in terms … Continue reading Basics: Black holes in theory

What is Piezoelectricity?

What is Piezoelectricity? ‘Piezo’ meaning to press or to squeeze. Piezoelectric property essentially is based on the interplay between mechanical and electrical features of a material. Bonds that keep materials together are electrons and these electrons are the basis for electricity. Therefore there exists a connection between material mechanics and material electronics. Changing one will impact the … Continue reading What is Piezoelectricity?

Telemedicine: A backgrounder

Telemedicine: A backgrounder The World Health Organization (WHO) defines Telemedicine as- The delivery of healthcare services, where distance is a critical factor, by all healthcare professionals using information and communication technologies for the exchange of valid information for diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease and injuries, research and evaluation and for the continuing education of … Continue reading Telemedicine: A backgrounder

In Focus: E-Courts in India

In Focus: E-Courts in India The Indian judiciary comprises of nearly 15,000 courts situated in approximately 2,500 court complexes throughout the country.The e-Courts project was conceptualized on the basis of the “National Policy and Action Plan for Implementation of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in the Indian Judiciary – 2005”submitted by e-Committee, Supreme Court of India … Continue reading In Focus: E-Courts in India

About The National Plan of Action for Children (NPAC), 2016

About The National Plan of Action for Children (NPAC), 2016 The National Plan of Action for Children, 2016 is based on the principles embedded in the National Policy for Children 2013. It seeks to ensure convergence of ongoing programmes and initiation of new programmes so as to focus on pre-determined objectives through well-defined strategies and … Continue reading About The National Plan of Action for Children (NPAC), 2016

Explained: The 67 acres in Ayodhya

Headline : Explained: The 67 acres in Ayodhya Details : The news The central government is seeking to return “excess/superfluous land” from the 67.703 acres it acquired in Ayodhya in 1993 to the original owners. To this end, it has moved to the Supreme Court asking to allow the return of land.   Background After the demolition of … Continue reading Explained: The 67 acres in Ayodhya

What are the differences between electric and hybrid vehicles?

What are the differences between electric and hybrid vehicles? The key difference between hybrid and all-EVs is in the sources of fuel and locomotion available to them. Hybrid vehicle: Hybrid vehicles have two sources available to them— a battery that powers an electric motor and a fuel tank that powers a normal petrol engine. Once … Continue reading What are the differences between electric and hybrid vehicles?

Emerging Vitamin D defiency in India

Emerging Vitamin D defiency in India It used to be a routine in India to massage infants and then give them a sunbath. But changing lifestyles over the years have almost put an end to this practice and children now spend most of their time indoors. This has led to the emergence of vitamin D … Continue reading Emerging Vitamin D defiency in India

In Focus: Protection of Children from Sexual OffencesPOSCO Act 2012

In Focus: Protection of Children from Sexual OffencesPOSCO Act 2012: The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act or the POCSO Act was enacted in 2012 to provide a robust legal framework for the protection of children from offences of sexual assault, sexual harassment and pornography, while safeguarding the interests of children at every stage of the … Continue reading In Focus: Protection of Children from Sexual OffencesPOSCO Act 2012

BASICS: Changes in Employee Provident Fund (EPF)

Headline : BASICS: Changes in Employee Provident Fund (EPF) Details : The Employee Provident Fund (EPF) is undergoing many changes. So will the changes enhance the utility of EPF or handicap subscribers?   About Employees’ Provident Fund and Employees' Pension Scheme: EPF (Employees’ Provident Fund Scheme 1952) and EPS (Employees' Pension Scheme 1995) are two different retirement … Continue reading BASICS: Changes in Employee Provident Fund (EPF)

In brief: Internet travel

In brief: Internet travel Client-Server Architecture Internet is often defined as a network of networks of computers. Computer connected to the Internet communicate with each other for data exchange under the Client-Server Architecture. Illustration: When you are accessing a mail on Gmail, your computer is a client that wants to access data, information, and other services present on … Continue reading In brief: Internet travel

About: LIC, GIC Re and New India

Life Insurance Corporation of Indiais an Indian state-owned insurance group and investment corporation owned by the Government of India. LIC is the largest life insurance company in India. GIC Re is the largest reinsurance company or insurer’s insurer. New India which is the largest general insurance company in the country. Government has plans to list the shares of LIC (India’s … Continue reading About: LIC, GIC Re and New India

About V.S. Naipaul

About V.S. Naipaul Sir VidiadharSurajprasad Naipaul, also known as Sir Vidia Naipaul or Sir V. S. Naipaulwas, was born Trinidad, where his paternal grandfather had emigrated from India in the 1880s as an indentured servant to work on the sugar plantations. He went to Oxford University on a scholarship and lived the rest of his life in England, where … Continue reading About V.S. Naipaul

Farm bills are seen by farmers to deliver freedom to private capital Editorial 27th Sep’20 FinancialExpress

Farm bills passed by the Parliament: Three bills with huge impact on Indian agriculture, including two farm bills and one concerning the stocking of agriculture produce, were passed by the Parliament.These are:The Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 (FPTC)The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020 (FAPAFS)The … Continue reading Farm bills are seen by farmers to deliver freedom to private capital Editorial 27th Sep’20 FinancialExpress

Agri reforms: Where did the APMCs go wrong? Editorial 26th Sep’20 FinancialExpress

Agricultural Produce Market Committees (APMCs) were brought in to ensure fair prices for farmers: Pre-APMC days in Indai were dominated by price misinformation and arbitrage (quick purchase and sell with middlemen making profits).APMCs were created in the early 1960s to ensure price discovery and fair transactions.They were designed to create infrastructure for auctions and storage out of … Continue reading Agri reforms: Where did the APMCs go wrong? Editorial 26th Sep’20 FinancialExpress

About: Ballistic missiles

About: Ballistic missiles A ballistic missile is a missile with a high, arching trajectory (path in the form of an arc), which is initially powered and guided, but falls under gravity on to its target.Thus these weapons are not guided for the entire duration of their flight and most of the flight is unpowered.These weapons are in a distinct category … Continue reading About: Ballistic missiles

To Return To Steady Growth Editorial 25th Sep’20 TimesofIndia

To Return To Steady Growth Editorial 25th Sep'20 TimesofIndia Economic downturn due to Covid-19: The GDP of India fell by 23.9% in April-June quarter of 2020 relative to that in the same quarter in 2019, according to recent government estimates.The decline is comparable to countries in which economic activity had been similarly severely impacted during the quarter … Continue reading To Return To Steady Growth Editorial 25th Sep’20 TimesofIndia

About Kofi Annan: Personal Life

About Kofi Annan: Personal Life Kofi Atta Annan was born on April 8, 1938, in the city of Kumasi in what was then Gold Coast and which, in 1957, became Ghana, the first African state to achieve independence from British colonialism. After a spell at the elite Mfantsipim boarding school founded by Methodists, he went … Continue reading About Kofi Annan: Personal Life

Should India have two time zones?

Headline : Should India have two time zones? Details : Why in news? Over the years, various citizens and political leaders have debated whether India should have two separate time zones. Now, a proposal for two time zones has come from India’s national timekeeper itself. Scientists at the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research’s National Physical … Continue reading Should India have two time zones?

In focus: Blast disease in rice

In focus: Blast disease in rice Introduction Blast disease is a fungal disease that infests rice severely threatening food security worldwide. In India, blast disease is epidemics occurred 7 times between 1980 and 1987 in AP, HP, Haryana and TN. Details Blast disease in rice is caused by fungus Magnaporthe oryzae which is one of the top … Continue reading In focus: Blast disease in rice

Who was Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis or ‘PCM’?

Headline : Who was Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis or ‘PCM’? Details : About P C Mahalanobis Early life: P.C. Mahalanobis was born in Calcutta on June 29, 1893. He was educated at the Brahmo Boys School, founded by Raja Ram Mohan Roy and went on to receive a B.Sc in Physics from Presidency College, Kolkata. After completing his majors … Continue reading Who was Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis or ‘PCM’?

About: Aryan Invasion Theory (AIT)

About: Aryan Invasion Theory (AIT) AIT was first propounded by Max Muller. According to this model, the Indo-Aryans migrated into India rather than invaded it, which nevertheless had the same effect on the indigenous peoples: their subjugation and the imposition of Indo-Aryan religion (Hinduism) and culture. So far, it's been the bedrock upon which Indian history has been written. Its … Continue reading About: Aryan Invasion Theory (AIT)

In Cave 16: the Kailasa temple

Headline : In Cave 16: the Kailasa temple Details : Introduction Kailasa temple in cave 16 of Ellora is one of the largest rock-cut temples in the world.   Story behind the temple According to a legend cited in the 10th century book Katha Kalpa Taru, sometime in the 8th century, the queen of the Rashtrakuta ruler Elu … Continue reading In Cave 16: the Kailasa temple

How govt regulates religious pilgrimages?

Headline : How govt regulates religious pilgrimages? Details : Amarnath Yatra: About Amarnath cave: Amarnath cave is a Hindu shrine located in Jammu and Kashmir, India. The cave is situated at an altitude of 3,888 m (12,756 ft), about 141 km from Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir. The peak pilgrimage occurs when the … Continue reading How govt regulates religious pilgrimages?

In focus: Superconductivity at room temperature

In focus: Superconductivity at room temperature Basic concepts ResistanceMaterials that conduct electricity well are called conductors. Eg: Metals. Resistance is an electrical quantity that measures how the device or material reduces the electric current flow through it. The resistance is measured in units of ohms (Ω). SuperconductorsSuperconductors are conductors that have zero resistancee. they don't impede … Continue reading In focus: Superconductivity at room temperature

Ranjit Singh: Personal Life

Ranjit Singh: Personal Life Ranjit Singh was born in 1780 in Gujranwala, now in Pakistan. He honoured men of reputed sanctity and enabled them to practise an enlarged charity. He attributed every success to the favour of God. He styled himself and his people collectively the Khalsa. The maharaja was known for his just and secular … Continue reading Ranjit Singh: Personal Life

About Bogibeel Bridge

About Bogibeel Bridge The Bogibeel double-deck bridge is a rail-road bridge across Brahmaputra River connecting Dibrugarh in Assam and Dehmaji in Assam. The 4.94 km long bridge is the longest rail-road bridge in India. The longest road bridge on Brahmaputra is the 9.15 km Dhola-Sadiya Bridge. The double-deck bridge will have a three-lane road in the upper deck and … Continue reading About Bogibeel Bridge

Giving MSMEs the right push Editorial 13th Sep’20 FinancialExpress

Giving MSMEs the right push Editorial 13th Sep'20 FinancialExpress Importance of MSME sector: The MSME sector contributes approximately 40% to the GDP and generates employment for 114 million Indians, comprising about 93% of the total labour force of the country. This sector under severe stress: Over the last few years, economic distress has hurt the … Continue reading Giving MSMEs the right push Editorial 13th Sep’20 FinancialExpress

About Soras

Background:About Soras The Saoras inhabit the remote ranges flanking the great Bansadhara river in southern Odisha. The Saora people are a jungle tribe with a shamanic culture. A shaman, usually a woman, serves as an intermediary between the two worlds [of the living and the dead]. One by one the spirits speak through her mouth … Continue reading About Soras

Demonetisation and Farmers

What is demonetisation? Demonetisation is a situation where the Central Bank of the country (Reserve Bank in India) withdraws the old currency notes of certain denomination as an official mode of payment. Notes of a particular denomination cease to be legal tender. In other words, the notes lose their value as a currency On November … Continue reading Demonetisation and Farmers

In focus: Hayabusa 2 Mission

In focus: Hayabusa 2 Mission Introduction Hayabusa 2 is the successor of Hayabusa mission of Japan to study the origin and evolution of our solar system. Hayabusa mission was launched in 2003 to study the features of asteroid ‘Itokawa’. Hayabus 2 mission was launched in 2014 and reached its destination, asteroid ‘Ryugu’ in 2018.   … Continue reading In focus: Hayabusa 2 Mission

In Brief: Venus and its exploration

In Brief: Venus and its exploration About Venus Introduction Venus has a solid surface by virtue of being one of the 3 inner planets besides Mercury and Earth. It is nearly the same size of the earth. Atmosphere The atmosphere of Venus is composed of 95% carbon dioxide and thus high greenhouse effect. Sulfur compounds … Continue reading In Brief: Venus and its exploration

What are Non-Banking Financial Company- Factors (NBFC-Factors)?

What are Non-Banking Financial Company- Factors (NBFC-Factors)? NBFC factors are companies that receive invoices by selling companies at discount prices. An NBFC-Factoring company needs to have a minimum Net Owned Fund of Rs. 5 Crore with the financial assets in the factoring business constituting, at least, 75 percent of its total assets. It also should … Continue reading What are Non-Banking Financial Company- Factors (NBFC-Factors)?

Jaipur: India’s first planned city

Jaipur: India’s first planned city The fortified city of Jaipur in Rajasthan was founded in 1727 by Sawai Jai Singh II. It is also one of the first planned cities in India. The chief architect Vidyadhar Bhattacharya designed and built the city on the concepts of 'shilp shastra’ and 'vastu shastra’. The walled city is roughly … Continue reading Jaipur: India’s first planned city

Headline : How jails pay and deduct prisoners’ wages

Headline : How jails pay and deduct prisoners’ wages Background In 1998, the Supreme Court asked all states to devise a mechanism so that victims of the offence could be compensated (State of Gujarat & Anr vs Gujarat High Court). Prisons in various states made their own rules, with the amount of compensation varying from state … Continue reading Headline : How jails pay and deduct prisoners’ wages

About Autonomous Vehicles

About Autonomous Vehicles Autonomous vehicles are mostly light motor vehicles like cars with highest level of automation. They can drive without a human driver and thus called self-driving cars.   Basic architecture of Autonomous vehicles: Sense-plan-act architecture Sense Sensors In order to sense the environment, they use a network of sensors including cameras, radars, infrared, Lidar … Continue reading About Autonomous Vehicles

In focus: Moonquakes

In focus: Moonquakes Moon is a one-plate world unlike a number of plates (major and minor) on earth. Further since moon also has no atmosphere, it was believed to be a dead world geologically.     Origin of Moonquakes The moon’s upper mantle is much more rigid and less fluid than the interior of the … Continue reading In focus: Moonquakes

Historical period 

Prehistoric period  It is known as the period before history i.e. it is the time period before the emergence of writing. The prehistoric period is divided into three ages: Stone age Bronze age Iron age   In India, the prehistoric period is divided into: Paleolithic (Old Stone Age) Mesolithic (Middle Stone Age) Neolithic (New Stone … Continue reading Historical period 

In focus: Blockchain technology

In focus: Blockchain technology Definition In simple words, blockchain is an information sharing platform where multiple authorities cooperate, coordinate and collaborate in a decision making process. Blockchain is a decentralized and distributed database on a peer-peer network which works on the basis of a consensus mechanism involving every node (computer) on the network. Understanding blockchain … Continue reading In focus: Blockchain technology

In focus: EMISAT

In focus: EMISAT EMISAT is an electronic intelligence satellite developed by ISRO and DRDO. The 435-kg EMISAT was developed under project KAUTILYA of Defence Electronics Research Laboratory of DRDO. It is basically designed to intercept signals from enemy radars in order to develop effective jamming techniques to counter the enemy radar. Satellite-based electronic intelligence will … Continue reading In focus: EMISAT

What role did Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel play in the Dandi march of 1930?

Headline : What role did Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel play in the Dandi march of 1930? Details : Context of the topic: On the occasion of the 89th anniversary of the Dandi March, tributes have also been paid to the contributions made by Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel to the movement.     About Dandi March Dandi March or … Continue reading What role did Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel play in the Dandi march of 1930?

In Brief: Features of the moon

In Brief: Features of the moon The distinctive features of moon when observed from a telescope or even naked eye are: Impact craters Lunar craters, large and small, are the result of the bombardment of meteorites on the lunar surface. That is why they are called impact craters Light-coloured highlands Most of the lunar surface constitutes light-coloured … Continue reading In Brief: Features of the moon

About: Mauritius Oil Spill

About: Mauritius Oil Spill CauseIn July, a Japanese ship ran aground and got stuck on a coral reef off Maurtius coast.The ship was carrying about 3,800 tons of Very Low Sulphur Fuel Oil and 200 tons of diesel oil. Most of the oil from the vessel has been pumped out.But, in August, the ship began … Continue reading About: Mauritius Oil Spill

In Focus: Israel and the Gulf Region

In Focus: Israel and the Gulf Region It’s a landmark agreement given that the UAE is only the third Arab country and the first in the Gulf region to establish diplomatic relations with Israel.With the exception of Jordan and Egypt, Israel does not have diplomatic relations with Gulf Arab states owing to its long-standing conflict with … Continue reading In Focus: Israel and the Gulf Region

In brief: In-vitro fertilization and frozen embryos

In brief: In-vitro fertilization and frozen embryos Basics In case of sexual reproduction, the beginning of development of an offspring is fertilization of male and female gametes into zygote (a fertilized egg or embryo). The zygote (embryo) is then implanted into the uterus where it develops into full-fledged organism in various stages. From the day … Continue reading In brief: In-vitro fertilization and frozen embryos

Why Primary Agriculture Credit Society needs to be propped up Editorial 14th Aug’20 HindustanTimes

Why Primary Agriculture Credit Society needs to be propped up Editorial 14th Aug'20 HindustanTimes Rural credit cooperatives: Just about two decades ago, credit cooperatives covered 69% of the rural credit outlets and their share in rural credit was 45% of the total rural credit in the country.They had a lion’s share of 57% in providing short-term … Continue reading Why Primary Agriculture Credit Society needs to be propped up Editorial 14th Aug’20 HindustanTimes

About Kambala

About Kambala Kambala is the traditional buffalo slush track race Buffalo Race held annually in coastal Karnataka. The Kambala season lasts from November to March. About 150 kambalas are held in Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and neighbouring Kasaragod (Kerala) districts in the season between November and March. This area is called Tulunadu (Land of Tulu Language). … Continue reading About Kambala

Background: ASAT Test

Background: ASAT Test On March 27, India became the 4th country after US, China, Russia, to test the Anti-Satellite missile capability under Mission Shakti. The ASAT test demonstrated India’s capability to destroy a satellite in the low earth orbit using a missile.   India’s position on weaponisation of outer space Principle India in principle opposes the … Continue reading Background: ASAT Test

What are Mutual Funds? What is the Total Expense Ratio (TER)?

What are Mutual Funds? A mutual fund is an investment vehicle made up of a pool of money collected from many investors for the purpose of investing in securities such as stocks, bonds, money market instruments and other assets. Mutual funds are operated by professional money managers, who allocate the fund's investments and attempt to … Continue reading What are Mutual Funds? What is the Total Expense Ratio (TER)?

What is PETN?

What is PETN? It is a highly explosive organic compound belonging to the chemical family same as of nitroglycerin and nitrocellulose.   Origin of PETN PETN was first prepared and patented in 1894 by the explosives manufacturer Rheinisch-Westfalische Sprengstoff in Germany. It was introduced as a commercial explosive after World War I.   How does … Continue reading What is PETN?

In Focus: Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization

In Focus: Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization The Sub-Mission on Agricultural Mechanisation (SMAM) was introduced in April 2014 with an aim to have inclusive growth of farm mechanisation to boost productivity.The scheme is implemented in all the states, to promote the usage of farm mechanization and increase the ratio of farm power to cultivable unit area up … Continue reading In Focus: Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization

About Indus Water Treaty

About Indus Water Treaty It is the treaty between the Government of India and the Government of Pakistan with twin objectives-Water sharing of river Indus and its tributaries between the upper riparian India and lower riparian Pakistan.Optimum utilisation of the waters of the Indus system of rivers.It was signed under the arbitration of the International Bank … Continue reading About Indus Water Treaty

In focus: Clean Meat

In focus: Clean Meat Introduction Clean meat or synthetic meat or lab-grown meat is a term used for transgenic meat prepared ex-vivo in the laboratory. The stem cells taken out of the body of the animals are cultured in a petri dish giving rise to cell-based cultured meat. Advantages Equivalent Clean meat is equivalent to … Continue reading In focus: Clean Meat

About Girija Devi and Thumri

About Girija Devi She was an eminent Indian classical vocalist representing the Benaras gharana. She was proficient singer of different genres of Hindustani vocal music like Khyal, Thumri, Dadra, Chaiti and Kajari. She is known as the 'Queen of Thumri'.   Awards She was a genius in her sphere of Indian classical vocal rendition. She … Continue reading About Girija Devi and Thumri

In brief: Meteorites

In brief: Meteorites Introduction Meteoroids are chunks of rocks in space just like asteroids. (only difference is size) When these meteoroids strikes the earth’s atmosphere, they appear are flash of light called meteor. In its travel to earth it the meteor survives it is called as meteorite. Thus meteorites are inter-planetary rocks that have been … Continue reading In brief: Meteorites

Why Soyabean is key to MP

Headline : Why Soyabean is key to MP Details : The Topic Significance of Soyabean for Madhya Pradesh has been explained.   History of Soyabean in India Malwa is India’s Midwest US and Indore its Chicago and that’s only because of soyabean. Soyabean in India has an American connection. The leguminous oilseed was hardly grown in … Continue reading Why Soyabean is key to MP

In Focus: NASA’s Mars Mission with Perseverance rover

Part of NASA's Moon to Mars exploration approach: The Mars 2020 Perseverance mission is part of America's larger Moon to Mars exploration approach that includes missions to the Moon as a way to prepare for human exploration of the Red Planet.NASA is planning to send the first woman and next man to the Moon by 2024.Thereafter, … Continue reading In Focus: NASA’s Mars Mission with Perseverance rover

In Focus: Smog @UpscExpress

In Focus: Smog Very simply, smogis a type of air pollution that reduces visibility.The term "smog" was first used in the early 1900s to describe a mix of smoke and fog, when smoke came from burning of fossil fuels like coal in thermal power plants. Sulphurous Smog It is also called “London smog”.It results from a high concentration of sulphur oxidesin the air … Continue reading In Focus: Smog @UpscExpress

When Indira banked on socialism

Headline : When Indira banked on socialism Details : In News It's now 50 years since the Indian government nationalized the 14 biggest commercial lenders on 20 July, 1969.   News Summary: The Indian financial sector underwent a massive shift 50 years ago, when the government nationalized the 14 biggest commercial lenders. The official history of … Continue reading When Indira banked on socialism

About GRAPES-3

About GRAPES-3 The Gamma Ray Astronomy PeV EnergieS phase-3 experiment is located at TIFR’s Cosmic Ray Laboratory in Ooty in Tamil Nadu. It is a collaboration of the Indian Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, the Japanese Osaka City University and the Japanese Nagoya Women's University. GRAPES-3 (Gamma Ray Astronomy PeV EnergieS phase-3) is designed to … Continue reading About GRAPES-3

In brief: Ancient monuments in India

In brief: Ancient monuments in India What is Ancient monument? Ancient Monument means any structure, erection or monument, or any tumulus or place of interment, or any cave, rock-sculpture, inscription or monolith which is of historical, archaeological or artistic interest and which has been in existence for not less than 100 years. It includes Remains … Continue reading In brief: Ancient monuments in India

About Ocean Energy

About Ocean Energy: Oceans cover 70 percent of the earth’s surface and represent an enormous amount of energy in the form of wave, tidal, marine current and thermal gradient. Deployment of ocean energy is currently limited but the sector has the potential to grow, fuelling economic growth, reduction of carbon footprint and creating jobs not only along … Continue reading About Ocean Energy

Explained: What ails the existing microcredit model

Headline : Explained: What ails the existing microcredit model Details : In News Studies suggest that the existing systems of microcredit have a limited impact on the long-term wellbeing of the recipients.   About: Microcredit Microcredit refers to the granting of very small loans to impoverished borrowers. Rationale Loans given as microcredit are often given to … Continue reading Explained: What ails the existing microcredit model

About Wolbachia

About Wolbachia Wolbachiaare naturally occurring bacteria found in 60% of all insect species. It is also the most common reproductive parasite in the biosphere. However, it is not found in the Aedes aegypti mosquito. The World Mosquito Program has also shown that when introduced into the Aedes aegyptimosquito, Wolbachia can help to reduce the transmission of  viruses to people … Continue reading About Wolbachia

HIV and AIDS: in brief

HIV and AIDS: in brief Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a virus that attacks the immune system, our body’s natural defence against illness. If HIV is left untreated, a person’s immune system will get weaker and weaker until it can no longer fight off life-threatening infections and diseases. Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a set of … Continue reading HIV and AIDS: in brief

About: Pied Cuckoo

About: Pied Cuckoo Different NamesScientific Name- Clamator jacobinusThe genus ‘Clamator’ literally translates to being a shouter, a bird which is quite vocal. The word ‘jacobinus’ relates to pied birds.These birds are also called as Chatak locally in India or pied crested cuckoo and Jacobin Cuckoo.It is a bird with black and white plumage (pied) with a fancy crest … Continue reading About: Pied Cuckoo

Some Basic Concepts of Economy

Some Basic Concepts What is Gross Value Added (GVA)? It is a measure of total output and income in the economy. It provides the rupee value for the amount of goods and services produced in an economy after deducting the cost of inputs and raw materials that have gone into the production of those goods … Continue reading Some Basic Concepts of Economy

What is Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR)? About Basel Norms

What is Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR)? Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) is the ratio of a bank’s capital in relation to its risk weighted assets and current liabilities. It is decided by central banks and bank regulators to prevent commercial banks from taking excess leverage and becoming insolvent in the process. It is measured as: Capital … Continue reading What is Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR)? About Basel Norms

Rudreswara (Ramappa) temple

About the Temple Rudreswara (Ramappa) temple at Palampet near Warangal, got its name Ramappa because of its chief sculptor Ramappa. It's probably the only temple in the country to be known by the name of its sculptor. The medieval Deccan Ramappa Temple which dates back to 1213 AD, was built by the patronage of the … Continue reading Rudreswara (Ramappa) temple

What is Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC)?

  What is Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC)? Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) is a statutory market committee constituted by a State Government in respect of trade in certain notified agricultural or horticultural or livestock products, under the Agricultural Produce Market Committee Act issued by that state government. APMCs are intended to be responsible for: … Continue reading What is Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC)?

About Shock waves

About Shock waves • When an airplane travels less than the speed of sound, the air ahead of it actually begins to flow out of the way before the plane reaches it. The pressure waves created by the airplane passing through the air end up being smooth and gradual. • But as an airplane reaches the speed of sound and … Continue reading About Shock waves

 When the world collapsed around Lehman Brothers 

Headline : When the world collapsed around Lehman Brothers  What triggered the crisis? From 2005 to 2007, at the height of the real estate bubble, mortgages were given to many homebuyers who could not afford them, and then packaged into securities and sold off. Lehman Brothers bought several mortgage brokerages and posted record profits. But in … Continue reading  When the world collapsed around Lehman Brothers 

What is plea bargaining and how does it work?

Many members of the Tablighi Jamaatbelonging to different countries have obtained release from court cases in recent days by means of plea bargaining.They were accused of violating visa conditionsby attending a religious congregation in Delhi. In Focus: Plea Bargaining The Concept: Plea bargaining refers to a person charged with a criminal offence negotiating with the prosecution for a lesser … Continue reading What is plea bargaining and how does it work?

In focus: Space Debris

In focus: Space Debris What is space debris? Inactive satellites that have passed their functional life, leftovers from a rocket or other small fragments form space debris often called as space junk. The A-SAT missile tests that shoot down a satellite adds to the space debris in space. Threat of space debris Space debris, even … Continue reading In focus: Space Debris

Hunter’s Syndrome

Hunter’s Syndrome Hunter’s syndrome is a rare genetic disorder that occurs as a result of a mutation in a gene that produces an enzyme that helps in breakdown of certain sugars. The enzyme activates parts in the cells in order to breakdown sugars. However, in the absence of the enzyme, these sugars build up in … Continue reading Hunter’s Syndrome

Why is a Public Credit Registry important?

Headline : Why is a Public Credit Registry important? Details : What is Public Credit Registry? A Public Credit Registry is set up by the central bank and reporting of loan details to the Registry by lenders and/or borrowers is mandated by law. A public credit registry is an information repository that collates all loan information of … Continue reading Why is a Public Credit Registry important?

Ganga Sagar

Ganga Sagar It is the largest village of Sagar Island, located under the administration of Sunderbans. It is governed by the state government of West Bengal. It is situated just off the Bengal coast on the point where the River Ganga meets the Bay of Bengal. It is a place of peace, calm, golden sand … Continue reading Ganga Sagar

Intention, tech and capital to make ‘One Sun One World One Grid’ a reality Editorial 14th Jul’20 FinancialExpress

Clean energy future: The key elements of the big picture in the energy world are becoming more and more clear.The dependence on fossil fuels will continue to drop and we are not very far from a future that will be predominantly run on clean energy. It may not be long before renewable energy overtakes conventional energy … Continue reading Intention, tech and capital to make ‘One Sun One World One Grid’ a reality Editorial 14th Jul’20 FinancialExpress