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Daily News Analysis 21-06-2015

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

ESSENCE OF THE ARTICLE

1.         

 

Chengdu is Indias gateway to western China (Page 8)

a)     I.R

a)     India is discovering Chengdu (a globally integrated economic hub) as a gateway to western China and cyber-connected parts of the Asia-Pacific.

2.

Dhaka has shown strong commitment to counter terror groups (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     The US has lauded Bangladesh for its strong political will and firm commitment in combating both domestic and transnational terrorist groups.

3.

LTTEs financial network still intact: US report (Page 12)

a)     International

a)    According to US report, the LTTEs international network of sympathisers and financial support persists despite its defeat at the hands of the Sri Lankan Army in 2009.

4.

Bt Cotton leading to suicides in rain-fed areas: US study (Page 9)

a)     National

b)     Social issue

a)     A latest study by US says that the cultivation of Bt Cotton (a genetically modified, insect-resistant cotton variety) is a risky affair for Indian farmers practising rain-fed agriculture.

5.

PM helps design logo for Housing for All (Page 9)

a)     National

a)     At a meeting to finalise the details of the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana scheme (which expects housing for all by 2022), the PM Modi seemed unimpressed with the designs that the Ministry of Housing and Poverty Alleviation had procured from several creative teams.

6.

Rare sculptures discovered at Hampi (Page 6)

a)     National

b)     History

a)     It was a trek up Gandha Madana hill that led to Archaeological Survey of India discovering some rare rock sculptures at Hampi.

7.

Humans driving sixth mega wipeout of animals (Page 18)

a)     Environment

b)     Geography

a)     Many conservationists have been warning for years that a mass extinction event close to one that wiped out the dinosaurs is occurring as humans degrade and destroy habitats. But the authors of a study said that even when they analysed the most conservative extinction rates, the rate at which vertebrates were being lost forever was far higher than in the last five mass extinctions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

BACKGROUND

IMPORTANT POINTS

1.         

 

Chengdu is Indias gateway to western China (Page 8)

a)     I.R

a)     India – China relations

b)     Trade ties

c)     Chengdu

a)     India is discovering Chengdu (a globally integrated economic hub) as a gateway to western China and cyber-connected parts of Asia-Pacific.

b)     Indias Ambassador to China says since the western region of China is developing very rapidly, our presence in this region will be helpful to develop relations between India and China in different areas, especially in trade and economy, culture and tourism.

c)     He pointed out that given Chengdus location as a link with western, central, north-western and south-western China, India has decided to open a consulate in the city. The Chinese are opening a consulate in Chennai, in order to deepen engagement along the Bay of Bengal coastline.

d)     Chengdu has also become the engine of Chinas Western Development Programme - a strategic plan to develop inland China, following the dramatic success in building coastal China.

2.

Dhaka has shown strong commitment to counter terror groups (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     Bangladeshs counter terrorism

b)     Antiterrorism Act (ATA) of 2009

c)     UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2178

a)     US has lauded Bangladesh for its strong political will and firm commitment in combating both domestic and transnational terrorist groups.

b)     Noting that the Awami League govt is active in the full range of international fora, the report said that the current govt has showed its strong interest in cooperating with India on counterterrorism.

c)     It noted that the govt signed MoU with a number of countries to share evidence regarding criminal investigations, including investigations related to financial crimes and terrorist financing.

d)     It said that Bangladeshs criminal justice system is in the process of fully implementing ATA of 2009 as amended in 2012 and 2013. Bangladesh used strategic communication to counter violent.

e)     The report pointed out that though Bangladeshs ATA does not outlaw recruitment and travel in furtherance of terrorism, the broad language of the ATA provides several mechanisms by which Bangladesh can implement UNSCR 2178, which requires nations to address the foreign terrorist fighter threat.

3.

LTTEs financial network still intact: US report (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     Sri Lankan internal issues

b)     Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)

c)     Eelam War IV

a)     According to US report, the LTTEs international network of sympathisers and financial support persists despite its defeat at the hands of the Sri Lankan Army in 2009.

b)     After the end of the Eelam War IV, there have been no known attacks in Sri Lanka that could be attributed to LTTE but a total of 13 LTTE supporters (several of which had allegedly planned attacks against the US and Israeli diplomatic facilities in India) were arrested in Malaysia in 2014.

c)     As in previous years, the Department maintained that the LTTE has used its international contacts and the large Tamil diaspora in North American, Europe and Asia to procure weapons, communications, funding and other needed supplies. It added that the group employed charities as fronts to collect and divert funds for its activities.

d)    The document cited lack of transparent tender mechanisms in govt projects as one of the reasons for the countrys vulnerability to money laundering and terrorist finance, even though Sri Lanka was neither an important regional financial centre nor a preferred centre for money laundering.

e)     According to the report, the Sri Lankan govt maintained a strong military presence in post-conflict areas and continued to voice concern about the possible re-emergence of pro-LTTE sympathisers.

4.

Bt Cotton leading to suicides in rain-fed areas: US study (Page 9)

a)     National

b)     Social issue

a)     Bt Cotton

b)     Rain-fed areas in India

c)     International Food Policy Research Institute

a)     A latest study by US says that the cultivation of Bt Cotton (a genetically modified, insect-resistant cotton variety) is a risky affair for Indian farmers practising rain-fed agriculture. Annual suicide rates of farmers in rain-fed areas are directly related to increase in Bt Cotton adoption.

b)     Revisiting the raw annual suicide data for Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka and Maharashtra during 2001-2010, the authors found 86,607 of 549,414 suicides were by farmers, and 87 percent were men with the numbers peaking in the 30-44 age group.

c)     Total suicides per year per State were regressed singly on the averages of proportion of area seeded to rain-fed cotton, average farm size, cotton-growing area, area under Bt Cotton, proportion of area under Bt Cotton, and simulated average yield a hectare that includes the effects of weather.

d)     The study is significant for two reasons. First, most cotton cultivation in India is rain-fed. Second, between 2002 and 2010, the adoption of Bt Cotton hybrid went up significantly to 86 percent of total cultivated area of cotton in India.

e)     Though cultivating the Bt Cotton variety may be economic in irrigated areas, the costs of the seed and insecticide increase the risk of farmer debt in low-yield rain-fed settings. The study challenges the common assumption in economic analyses that cotton pests must be controlled to prevent monetary losses, thus encouraging Bt Cotton adoption.

f)     The authors say the annual emergence of key cotton pest pink bollworm in spring is poorly timed to attack rain-fed cotton and large populations of the pest fail to develop in non-Bt rain-fed cotton. This reduces and usually prevents the need for Bt Cotton and disruptive insecticides. They recommend that high-density short-season cotton could increase yields and reduce input costs in irrigated and rain-fed cotton.

g)     Bt Cotton has been shown to improve cotton yields by past studies, such as one conducted by International Food Policy Research Institute in 2012. Examining the contribution of Bt Cotton adoption to long-term average cotton yields in India in 9 cotton-producing States from 1975 to 2009, the study showed that Bt Cotton contributed 19 percent of the total yield growth over time, since its introduction in 2002.

5.

PM helps design logo for Housing for All (Page 9)

a)     National

a)     Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana scheme (Housing for all by 2022 scheme)  

a)     At a meeting to finalise the details of the PMAY scheme (which expects housing for all by 2022), the PM Modi seemed unimpressed with the designs that the Ministry of Housing and Poverty Alleviation had procured from several creative teams.

b)     According to a source, he found most of the designs either too direct depicting house or too cluttered. Of few sketches that the PM drew, one which has an H for house with a not too distinct roof and an Ashok Chakra on the top is now being worked upon.

c)     PM Modi has promised housing for all with amenities including piped water, toilet facilities and electricity by 2022, when nation completes 75 years of Independence.

6.

Rare sculptures discovered at Hampi (Page 6)

a)     National

b)     History

a)     Rock sculptures

b)     Hampi

c)     Vijayanagar period

d)     Archaeological Survey of India (ASI)

a)     It was a trek up Gandha Madana hill that led to ASI discovering some rare rock sculptures at Hampi.

b)     They found sculptures of Vishnu, in the form of Dhanwantri, sculpted on the cliff of a gigantic boulder. Adjacent to it was sculpture of Rama along with Lakshmana, Hanuman in the background.

c)     They said the findings might date back to the earlier Vijayanagar period.

d)     The face and crown of the Vishnu sculpture looks to be that of Amruta Kalasa. The sculpture of Dhanwantri Vishnu with Sridevi and Bhoodevi on either side, holding Shankha and chakra in his hands. This is the first time such sculptures have been found.

7.

Humans driving sixth mega wipeout of animals (Page 18)

a)     Environment

b)     Geography

a)     Biodiversity

b)     Species extinction

c)     Anthropogenic factors

 

a)     Many conservationists have been warning for years that a mass extinction event close to one that wiped out the dinosaurs is occurring as humans degrade and destroy habitats.

b)     But the authors of a study said that even when they analysed the most conservative extinction rates, the rate at which vertebrates were being lost forever was far higher than in the last five mass extinctions.

c)     Previous studies have warned that impact of humans taking land for buildings, farming and timber has been to make species extinct at speeds unprecedented in Earths 4.5 billion-year history.

d)     Under a natural rate of extinction, the study said that 2 species go extinct per 10,000 species per 100 years, rather than one species that previous work has assumed. They found that modern rates of extinction were 8 to 100 times higher.

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