geography

Arctic Region and Arctic Council

The Arctic is a polar region located at the northernmost part of Earth.

8 Jul, 2020

BRAHMAPUTRA AND ITS TRIBUTARIES

About Brahmaputra River: The Brahmaputra called Yarlung

3 Jul, 2020
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    Current Affairs – 25th November 2021

    1.    PRADHAN MANTRI GARIB KALYAN ANNA YOJANA (PM – GKAY)

    • News: Acknowledging that poor families still need food security support in the middle of a recovering economy, the Centre has decided to extend its free ration scheme, Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY), for another four months, until March 2022.
    • About Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana:
      • Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PM-GKAY) is a scheme as part of Atmanirbhar Bharat to supply free food grains to migrants and poor.
      • More than 81.35 crore people will be provided 5 kg free wheat/rice per person / month along with 1 kg free whole chana to each family per month.
      • Wheat has been allocated to 6 States/UTs, – Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Chandigarh, Delhi and Gujarat and rice has been provided to the remaining States/UTs.
      • This is over and above the regular monthly entitlements under National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA).
      • Eligibility 
        • Families belonging to the Below Poverty Line – Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and Priority Households (PHH) categories will be eligible for the scheme.
        • PHH are to be identified by State Governments/Union Territory Administrations as per criteria evolved by them. AAY families are to be identified by States/UTs as per the criteria prescribed by the Central Government:
        • Households headed by widows or terminally ill persons or disabled persons or persons aged 60 years or more with no assured means of subsistence or societal support.
        • Widows or terminally ill persons or disabled persons or persons aged 60 years or more or single women or single men with no family or societal support or assured means of subsistence.
        • All primitive tribal households.
        • Landless agriculture labourers, marginal farmers, rural artisans/craftsmen such as potters, tanners, weavers, blacksmiths, carpenters, slum dwellers, and persons earning their livelihood on daily basis in the informal sector like porters, coolies, rickshaw pullers, hand cart pullers, fruit and flower sellers, snake charmers, rag pickers, cobblers, destitutes  and other similar categories in both rural and urban areas.
        • All eligible Below Poverty Line families of HIV positive persons.

    2.    CENTRAL RESERVE POLICE FORCE

    • News: More than 80% of the terrorists killed this year in Kashmir hailed from the Valley, according to Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) data.
    • About Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF):
      • The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is India’s largest Central Armed Police Force.
      • It functions under the authority of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) of the Government of India.
      • The CRPF’s primary role lies in assisting the State/Union Territories in police operations to maintain law and order and counter insurgency.
      • It came into existence as the Crown Representative’s Police on 27 July 1939. After Indian Independence, it became the Central Reserve Police Force on enactment of the CRPF Act on 28 December 1949.
      • Besides law and order and counter-insurgency duties, the CRPF has played an increasingly large role in India’s general elections.
      • This is especially true for the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar and in the North East, with the presence of unrest and often violent conflict.
      • During the Parliamentary elections of September 1999, the CRPF played a major role in the security arrangements. Of late, CRPF contingents are also being deployed in UN missions.
      • With 246 battalions and various other establishments, the CRPF is considered India’s largest central armed police force and has a sanctioned strength of more than 300,000 personnel as of 2019.

    3.    EUTROPHICATION

    • News: Consistent rain this season has not only filled lakes in western parts of the city with water but also with weeds and waste from upstream.
    • About Eutrophication:
      • Eutrophication is the process by which an entire body of water, or parts of it, becomes progressively enriched with minerals and nutrients.
      • It has also been defined as “nutrient-induced increase in phytoplankton productivity”.
      • Water bodies with very low nutrient levels are termed oligotrophic and those with moderate nutrient levels are termed mesotrophic.
      • Advanced eutrophication may also be referred to as dystrophic and hypertrophic conditions.
      • Eutrophication in freshwater ecosystems is almost always caused by excess phosphorus.
      • Prior to human interference, this was, and continues to be, a very slow natural process in which nutrients, especially phosphorus compounds and organic matter, accumulate in water bodies.
      • These nutrients derive from degradation and solution of minerals in rocks and by the effect of lichens, mosses and fungi actively scavenging nutrients from rocks.
      • Anthropogenic or cultural eutrophication is often a much more rapid process in which nutrients are added to a water body from any of a wide variety of polluting inputs including untreated or partially treated sewage, industrial wastewater and fertilizer from farming practices.
      • Nutrient pollution, a form of water pollution, is a primary cause of eutrophication of surface waters, in which excess nutrients, usually nitrogen or phosphorus, stimulate algal and aquatic plant growth.
      • The visible effect of eutrophication is often nuisance algal blooms that can cause substantial ecological degradation in water bodies and associated streams.
      • This process may result in oxygen depletion of the water body after the bacterial degradation of the algae.

    4.    WORLD ANTIBIOTIC AWARENESS WEEK

    • News: The World Antibiotic Awareness Week was observed at Government Omandurar Medical College and Hospital on Wednesday. According to a press release, the week was observed from November 18 to 24.
    • About Antibiotic Resistance:
      • Antibiotics are medicines used to prevent and treat bacterial infections. Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria change in response to the use of these medicines.
      • Bacteria, not humans or animals, become antibiotic-resistant. These bacteria may infect humans and animals, and the infections they cause are harder to treat than those caused by non-resistant bacteria.
      • Antibiotic resistance leads to higher medical costs, prolonged hospital stays, and increased mortality.
      • The world urgently needs to change the way it prescribes and uses antibiotics. Even if new medicines are developed, without behaviour change, antibiotic resistance will remain a major threat. Behaviour changes must also include actions to reduce the spread of infections through vaccination, hand washing, practising safer sex, and good food hygiene.

    5.    LITHIUM

    • News: A number of Chinese companies have already begun “on-site inspections” of possible projects to tap lithium deposits in Afghanistan, having received the green light to do so from the Taliban regime.
    • About Lithium:
      • Lithium is a chemical element with the symbol Li and atomic number 3.
      • It is a soft, silvery-white alkali metal. Under standard conditions, it is the lightest metal and the lightest solid element.
      • Like all alkali metals, lithium is highly reactive and flammable, and must be stored in vacuum, inert atmosphere or inert liquid such as purified kerosene or mineral oil.
      • When cut, it exhibits a metallic luster, but moist air corrodes it quickly to a dull silvery gray, then black tarnish.
      • It never occurs freely in nature, but only in (usually ionic) compounds, such as pegmatitic minerals, which were once the main source of lithium.
      • Due to its solubility as an ion, it is present in ocean water and is commonly obtained from brines.
      • Lithium metal is isolated electrolytically from a mixture of lithium chloride and potassium chloride.
    • About Lithium – ion Battery:
      • A lithium-ion battery or Li-ion battery is a type of rechargeable battery in which lithium ions move from the negative electrode through an electrolyte to the positive electrode during discharge, and back when charging.
      • Li-ion batteries use an intercalated lithium compound as the material at the positive electrode and typically graphite at the negative electrode.
      • Li-ion batteries have a high energy density, no memory effect (other than LFP cells) and low self-discharge.
      • Cells can be manufactured to either prioritize energy or power density.
      • They can however be a safety hazard since they contain flammable electrolytes, and if damaged or incorrectly charged can lead to explosions and fires.
      • A prototype Li-ion battery was developed by Akira Yoshino in 1985, based on earlier research by John Goodenough, M. Stanley Whittingham, Rachid Yazami and Koichi Mizushima during the 1970s–1980s, and then a commercial Li-ion battery was developed by a Sony and Asahi Kasei team led by Yoshio Nishi in 1991.