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Daily News Analysis 21-12-2014








Colombo opposition takes anti-China stand (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)     China – Sri Lanka relations

b)     India – Sri Lanka relations

c)     Chinese projects in Sri Lanka

d)     Hambantota port

e)     IRCON

a)     Amidst concern in India over the growing Chinese presence in Sri Lanka, the joint opposition platform has begun questioning Chinas role in the island nation ahead of the Jan 8 presidential election.

b)     Earlier this week, leader of the UNP and former PM promised to remove the $1.34-billion Chinese-funded Colombo Port City Project, citing threats to the environment once the joint opposition candidate Sirisena comes to power.

c)     The port city (Sri Lankas largest single foreign investment started by Chinese President Xi in Sept) is being built alongside an existing Chinese-built container terminal.

d)     As per the agreement with Sri Lanka, China will gain ownership of a third of the nearly 580 acres of reclaimed land where the port city is to come up.

e)     Sirisena in his election manifesto said his govt would maintain equal relations with India and China, as if to reduce fears over Sri Lankas apparent move towards China.

f)     Irrespective of the party in power, Sri Lanka has historically had good relations with China, recognising the need to have support from a big power

g)     While Indias IRCON was executing it in the islands north at a cost of $2.5 million per km with additional features, a Chinese firm was constructing railway lines in the south at a cost of $10.5 million.


N.Korea vows to bolster n-capacity (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     North Koreas nuclear capacity

b)     UNGA

c)     UNSC

d)     International Criminal Court (ICC)

a)     North Korea promised to strengthen its nuclear capacity, throwing a UN resolution calling for it to be referred to the ICC over its human rights record.

b)     The UNGA had adopted a resolution by a strong majority that asks the Security Council to refer North Korea to the ICC and to consider targeted sanctions against the Pyongyang leadership for the repression of its citizens.

c)     Officials said that North Korea will increase efforts to strengthen up in every way its capability for self-defence including nuclear force.


Urban housing schemes at slow pace: panel (Page 8)

a)     National

b)     Social issue

a)     Urban housing schemes

b)     Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY)

c)     Sardar Patel National Mission for Urban Housing

a)     A Standing Committee on Urban Development has noted that the UPAs housing programme RAY failed to take off due to lack of planning.

b)     The Modi govt has promised Housing for all by 2022, relaunching the programme under the Sardar Patel National Mission for Urban Housing.

c)     RAY was set up for a slum-free India with inclusive and equitable cities, where citizens have access to basic civic infrastructure and social amenities and decent shelter. 

d)     Taking serious note of the pace of work, the Committee seems doubtful of the Ministrys explanation that RAY has been discontinued and the liabilities created by way of approval of projects are proposed to be subsumed in the new scheme.

e)     The facts are indicative of the fact that RAY is a battle and the new mission for Urban Housing is a war. 


Centre will work to improve healthcare (Page 7)

a)     National

b)     Health

a)     Health schemes

b)     Primary healthcare


a)     Union Home Minister said the Centre would make all efforts for improving Indias medical infrastructure and making medical facilities more integrated and affordable. 

b)     Stressing the need for developing an integrated healthcare system, he said our govt is committed to improve the medical infrastructure. We need to improve the primary healthcare system, which will reduce the pressure on super-speciality hospitals.

c)     He said The govt will ensure that maximum facilities are available in the country. 


More than 50 percent of farm households in debt (Pages 1 and 8)

a)     National

b)     Economy

a)     National Sample Survey Office (NSSO)

b)     Agriculture

c)     Census 2011

d)     MGNREGA

a)     According to the most extensive survey of farm households to date conducted by NSSO, nearly 90 percent of Indias farmers have less than two hectares of land.

b)     The survey says the average farm household makes less than Rs.6500 a month from all sources of income.

c)     The new survey was for the agricultural year 2012-13 and covered 35,000 households.

d)     For this survey, the NSSO defined an agricultural household as one in which at least one member was self-employed in agriculture and which produced at least Rs 3000 worth of agricultural produce in a year.

e)     By this definition, 58 percent of rural households are agricultural households.

f)     Over half of all agricultural households are in debt and 42 percent of them pay money to banks and 26 percent pay moneylenders.

g)     According to the 2011 Census, the number of agricultural labourers (144.3 million) in fact now exceeds the number of cultivators (118.7 million) but it is not clear how many of those doing agricultural labour are also cultivators.

h)     The NSSO findings in India for the agricultural year 2012-13 show that both small and big land-owners derive their income from a mix of farm and non-farm work now.


How earths crust forms (Page 16)

a)     S&T

b)     Geography

a)     Earths crust

b)     Volcano movement

c)     Baroarbunga vocano

d)     Magma

a)     By monitoring how magma flows through cracks in the rock away from a volcano, scientists have throw light on how the earths crust forms.

b)     When the Baroarbunga volcano in Iceland erupted in August, scientists found that the molten rock forms vertical sheet-like features known as dykes, which force the surrounding rock apart.

c)     New crust forms where two tectonic plates are moving away from each other. Mostly this happens under the oceans, where it is difficult to observe.

d)     However, in Iceland this happens under dry land.

e)     Using radar measurements from space, we can form an image of caldera (a large volcano crater) movement occurring in one day.

f)     Usually we expect to see just noise in the image but we were amazed to see up to 55cm of subsidence.


Hainan gibbon clinging on with 25 left in China (Page 16)

a)     Environment

a)     Biodiversity

b)     Gibbon

c)     Hainan island

d)     Rain forests

a)     Scientists are racing to save a critically endangered ape species that lives only in the rainforests of southern Chinas Hainan island.

b)     The scientists say with 25 known individuals remaining, a disease outbreak or a strong typhoon could massively impact the speciess chances of survival.

c)     Researchers said that the Hainan gibbon was definitely the worlds rarest ape species, the rarest primate species and one of the rarest mammal species.

d)     They are kind of clinging on literally and metaphorically to patches of forest in the mountains which people have not gotten around to cutting down yet.

e)     He said both the species and its habitat were protected under Chinese law, but the population is so low now.

f)     Hainan is Chinas smallest and southernmost province (an island of rainforests) mountains and sandy beaches in the South China Sea.

g)     The gibbons (gangly creatures with small black faces and thick beige fur) live in the Bawangling national nature reserve, a 26 sq mile area of rainforest more than 120 miles from the provincial capital, Haikou.


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