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 – 4th April 2022

    1.   HEATWAVE IN NORTH INDIA

    • News: The India Meteorological Department has forecast no respite from the heatwave, which is expected to prevail over Delhi for the next five days. The maximum temperatures will likely remain 6-7 degrees above normal this week.
    • About Heatwave:
      • The World Meteorological Organization defines it as five or more consecutive days during which the daily maximum temperature surpasses the average maximum temperature by 5 °C (9 °F) or more.
      • The India Meteorological Department requires that temperatures increase 5–6 °C (9–10.8 °F) or more above the normal temperature.

    2.   ECONOMIC CRISIS IN SRI LANKA

    • News: All Cabinet Ministers in Sri Lanka resigned late on Sunday, amid raging protests by citizens asking the Rajapaksa administration to quit for “failing” the country in its crisis response.
    • Details:
      • Since 2010, Sri Lanka witnessed a sharp rise in foreign debt, reaching 88% of the country’s GDP in 2019.
      • The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic induced global recession accelerated the crisis and by 2021, the foreign debt rose to 101% of the nation’s GDP, causing an economic crisis.
      • Several protests were staged by the political opposition demanding the current administration to solve the financial crisis and to immediately resign in wake of the wider economic crisis.
      • The incumbent Government of Sri Lanka under president Gotabaya Rajapaksa made large tax cuts which affected government revenue and fiscal policies causing budget deficits to soar from 5% in 2020 to 15% in 2022.
      • To cover government spending the Central Bank began printing money in record amounts, ignoring advice by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to stop printing money and instead hike interest rates and raise taxes while cutting spending, as well as another IMF warning that continuing money printing would lead to an economic implosion.
      • This resulted in social unrest and protests due to the rise of the cost of living, and drove Sri Lanka to the brink of bankruptcy due to foreign reserves falling to US$2.3 billion as of March 2022, this being insufficient to pay the foreign debt obligations of US $7 billion and an International Sovereign Bond (ISB) payment of US$1 billion for the year 2022.

    3.   GOOD MANUFACTURING PRACTICES

    • News: The World Health Organization (WHO) has suspended supply of Covaxin, Bharat Biotech’s COVID-19 vaccine, through UN agencies to allow the manufacturer to upgrade facilities and address deficiencies.
    • About Good Manufacturing Practices:
      • Good manufacturing practices (GMP) are the practices required in order to conform to the guidelines recommended by agencies that control the authorization and licensing of the manufacture and sale of food and beverages, cosmetics, pharmaceutical products, dietary supplements, and medical devices.
      • These guidelines provide minimum requirements that a manufacturer must meet to assure that their products are consistently high in quality, from batch to batch, for their intended use.
      • The rules that govern each industry may differ significantly; however, the main purpose of GMP is always to prevent harm from occurring to the end user

    4.   NEAR FIELD COMMUNICATION

    • News: Near-field communication is a short-range wireless connectivity technology that allows NFC-enabled devices to communicate with each other and transfer information quickly and easily with a single touch.
    • About Near Field Communication (NFC):
      • NFC is a short-range wireless connectivity technology that allows NFC-enabled devices to communicate with each other and transfer information quickly and easily with a single touch —whether to pay bills, exchange business cards, download coupons, or share a document.
      • NFC transmits data through electromagnetic radio fields, to enable communication between two devices. Both devices must contain NFC chips, as transactions take place within a very short distance.
      • NFC-enabled devices must be either physically touching or within a few centimetres from each other for data transfer to occur.
      • NFC technology is designed for an operation between devices within a few centimetres from each other. This makes it difficult for attackers to record the communication between the devices compared to other wireless technologies which have a working distance of several metres, according to the NFC forum, a non-profit industry association.
      • The user of the NFC-enabled device determines by the touch gesture which entity the NFC communication should take place with, making it more difficult for the attacker to get connected. The security level of the NFC communication is by default higher compared to other wireless communication protocols.
      • The NFC Forum has also added Peer to Peer communication which is a mechanism to cipher all exchanged data to avoid external interpretation of recorded communication. Since the receiving device reads your data the instant you send it, NFCs also reduce the chance of human error.