Expected Most Important Topics for UPSC - 2018 (Part - 5) (Download PDF)


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Yatri Mitra Sewa - A Yatri Mitra can either be a Sahayak or any other person provided by IRCTC or the service provider appointed by IRCTC for this purpose. IRCTC may provide this service ‘Free of cost’ through some NGO, PSUs etc under CSR.

  • Yatri Mitra shall provide Wheel chair cum porter services to differently abled, ailing and old persons.

  • Objective: To provide support to old and differently abled passengers requiring assistance at the stations.

Steel Research and Technology Mission of India (SRTMI)

  • It is an industry driven initiative which has been setup as a Registered Society wherein Ministry of Steel is a facilitator.

  • Ministry of Steel will provide 50 % of the required corpus and the balance will be provided by participating steel companies.

  • Objective:

    • Spearhead R&D of national importance in iron & steel.

    • To create state - of - art facilities in research and augment human resource.

    • To develop collaborations amongst industry, national R&D laboratories and academic institutes as per national objectives and aspirations.

Powertex India Scheme

  • It has nine major components: In - situ Upgradation of Plain Power looms, Group Workshed Scheme (GWS), Yarn Bank Scheme, PM Credit Scheme, Solar Energy Scheme, Common Facility Centre (CFC), Tex Venture Capital Fund, Facilitation, IT, Awareness, Market Development and Publicity for Power loom Schemes, and Grant - in - Aid and Modernisation & Upgradation of Power loom Service Centres (PSCs).

  • The two major schemes are:

    • Pradhan Mantri Credit Scheme (PM CS) for power loom weavers

    • Solar energy scheme for power looms

  • Objective: To provide financial assistance to economically weaker low - end power loom units for their modernisation and Infrastructure development.

Scheme for Capacity Building in Textile Sector (SAMARTH)

  • It is a skill development scheme covering the entire value chain of the textile sector excluding Spinning & Weaving in organized Sector to be implemented from 2017 - 18 to 2019 – 20.

  • Skill gap and skilling requirements will be assessed and skills will be imparted accordingly.

  • Objectives: To provide demand driven, placement oriented NSQF (National Skills Qualification Framework) Compliant skilling programme to incentivize organized textile and related sectors excluding Spinning and Weaving.


  • Sakaar is Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) Augmented Reality (AR) application designed for Andriod devices.

  • The application consists of 3 Dimensional (3D) models of Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), RISAT, indigenous rockets such as PSLV, GSLV Mk-III etc.

Sunjwan Army Camp Attack

  • The Sunjwan Army camp near Chennai in Jammu was recently attacked suspectedly by Jaish - e - Mohammed (JeM) militants.

  • At least three terrorists are said to have entered the camp through a nullah (water stream).

  • Six persons, including 5 soldiers and a civilian, were killed.

  • A large quantity of arms and ammunition was seized from them.

  • The army continued with the search operation at the camp.

  • This is not the first time the Sunjuwan Army camp is targeted.

Khap Panchayats

  • Khap panchayat is the union of a few villages, mainly in north India though it exists in similar forms in the rest of the country.

  • These village councils run by unelected elders turned in to a quasi - judicial body promotes conservative, anti - women values in the name of preserving Indian culture and tradition.

  • Most cases are reported in northern states such as Uttar Pradesh and Haryana.

  • Khaps have not only continued to flourish, but also have found patronage from mainstream political leaders

Draft National Auto Policy

  • The Department of Heavy Industry, Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises has recently released the draft National Auto Policy.

  • key provisions:

    • Import duty

    • Green Mobility

    • Emission

    • GeM portal

    • Infrastructure

    • Skill development

    • Employment

    • Investment

  • The draft auto policy also suggests setting up of a ‘technology acquisition fund’.

  • Initiating trade pacts with countries with attractive markets for Indian automotive exports is also called for.

  • The policy also calls for encouraging FDI in the country’s Automobile sector.

Khalistan Movement

  • An Indian - origin businessman with ties to the Khalistan movement has become the new thorn in the relationship between India and Canada.

  • At the present, Khalistan movement is a dormant movement in India.

  • It does not hold much traction in the urban or local populace of Punjab.

  • But the movement gets ideological support from Sikhs living in Canada, UK or USA.

  • They pump money, ideological support to the struggle, ISI of Pakistan is still pumping money and effort in reviving the movement.

  • The Khalistan issue has become a big irritant in the India – Canada relations.

Oxfam Scandal

  • Oxfam International is following an opaque mechanism in regulating its employers involved in Haiti scandal.

  • Due to this agency faces an uncertain future for its International support and funding.

  • It is based in UK but it has its operation across 90 countries.

  • During the relief operations in Haiti many employees of Oxfam has indulged in sexual abuse on women and children as young as 14.

  • Oxfam has a strong policy framework for protecting staff and beneficiaries from sexual exploitation and abuse.

Laqshya Initiative

  • Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has recently launched Laqshya - Labour Room Quality Improvement Initiative.

  • Its objective is to reduce preventable maternal and new - born mortality, morbidity and stillbirths by improving the quality of care provided in the labour room.

  • It will be implemented in Government Medical Colleges besides District Hospitals, and Sub - District Hospitals and Community Health Centres.

Jeevan Pramaan

  • The scheme is under Ministry of Electronics and IT.

  • One of the main requisites for the pensioners to avail pension is to provide life certificates.

  • Jeevan Pramman aims to streamline the process of getting Life certificate and making it hassle free and easier to get.

  • It is an AADHAR Biometric Authentication based digital life certificates for Pensioners.

Assistance to Disabled Persons for Purchase/Fitting of Aids and Appliances (ADIP)

  • The scheme is under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

  • The main objective of the ADIP scheme is to provide latest and modern aids and assistive devices to the Divyangja n to promote their physical, social and psychological rehabilitation and to enhance their economic potential.

  • Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO) is the implementing agency of this scheme.


  • ECO - NIWAS (Energy Conservation – New Indian Way for Affordable & Sustainable homes) is an online portal recently unveiled on the occasion of Energy Conservation Day (14th December).

  • It is for increasing awareness to build sustainable and energy efficient homes in the country.

  • It is developed by Bureau of Energy Efficiency, a statutory body under Ministry of Power.


  • It is launched by Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.

  • It is program with the objective of funding startups in this high - tech sector and the program itself is part of the Startup India scheme.

  • Under this initiative, India’s state - run companies pledged to support more than 30 starts - ups who will be funded for the next 3 years through a corpus of Rs. 320 crore.

  • Its objective is to bring in innovations and disruptions in the technology - heavy oil and gas industry.

MSME Sambandh

  • It is a public procurement portal unveiled by Ministry of MSME.

  • The objective of the portal is to monitor the implementation of the Public Procurement from MSEs by Central Public Sector Enterprises.

  • Every Central Ministry/Department/PSU shall set an annual goal for procurement from the MSE sector at the beginning of the year, with the objective of achieving an overall procurement goal of minimum of 20 % of the total annual purchases of the products or services produced or rendered by MSEs.

Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP)

  • The government has recently approved the continuation of Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) beyond the 12th Plan period for three years to 2019 - 20 with a total outlay of Rs. 5,500 crore.

  • PMEGP is a major credit - linked subsidy programme being implemented by the Ministry of MSME since 2008 –09.

  • The Scheme is aimed at generating self-employment opportunities through establishment of micro - enterprises in the non-farm sector by helping traditional artisans and unemployed youth in rural as well as urban area.

Kisan Credit Card to Fishermen and Cattle Owners

  • Union Budget 2018 - 19 has expanded the scope of Kisan credit card to fishermen and cattle owners.

  • The scheme will benefit the credit - starved emerging entrepreneur s in the area of open sea and coastal cage farming.

  • Kisan Credit Card - The scheme aims at providing adequate and timely credit support from the banking system under a single window with flexible.

  • KCC scheme also provides the facility of ATM enabled RuPay Card, one - time documentation, built - in cost escalation in the limit and any number of drawals within the limit.


  • UMANG (Unified Mobile Application for New - age Governance) mobile app allow citizens to access government services on a single platform.

  • The services live on the app include Aadhaar, DigiLocker, Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) among others.

  • It is expected to provide access to over 1,200 services of various government organisations in states and at the Centre as well as utility payments.

  • The app is developed and operated by National e - Governance Division of Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY).

Jatan and Darshak

  • Centre for Development for Advanced Computing (C-DAC), has developed software named “Jatan” that is set to revolutionize museum experience.

  • The latest technology will help online visitors get a 3 - Dimensional (3D) view of hundreds of artifacts displayed at the museums.

  • The software will enable virtual tours to museums.

  • The group has developed “Darshak”, a mobile - based application, aimed at improving the museum visit experience among the differently - abled.

Tejaswini Scheme

  • It is financed by World Bank

  • It seeks to empower adolescent girls with basic life skills to acquire market driven skill training or completion of secondary educations, depending on the inclination of the beneficiary.

  • The project is being delivered in 17 Districts of Jharkhand

Viral Load Testing for All People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV)

  • Ministry of Health has launched free ‘Viral load testing to people living with HIV/AIDS.

  • Viral load kits are used to determine severity of an infection before deciding on the treatment regimen that is appropriate for HIV patients.

  • The viral load is used to monitor the effectiveness of Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) over time.

  • It measures the of HIV genetic material (RNA) in the blood and reports how many copies of the virus are present.

  • India has the third largest population of people with HIV after South Africa and Nigeria, according to UNAIDS.

International Mother Tongue Day 2018

  • The United Nations’ (UN) International Mother Language Day annually celebrates language diversity and variety worldwide on February 21.

  • This year theme is ‘Linguistic diversity and multilingualism count for sustainable development’.

  • At least 43 % of the estimated 60 (N) languages spoken in the world are endangered.

  • International Mother Language Day also supports target 6 of Goal 4 (literacy) of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Surajkund International Crafts Mela

  • Every year from 1—15 February, (in 2018, it is from 2 - 18 February) a colorful traditional craft festival India is held in Faridabad, Haryana.

  • This fair was first started in 1987.

  • Traditional craftsmen (artists, painters, weavers and sculptors) from all parts of the country participate in this annual celebration named as the “Surajkund Crafts Mela” or “Surajkund designer’s Village”

  • It is a spectacular showcase (JI regional and international crafts. handlooms, traditions along with multi—cuisine food for the visitors.

  • The theme state for this edition is Uttar Pradesh.

Hunar Se Rozgar Tak

  • It is an initiative Ministry of Tourism; courses are offered in hospitality trades namely Food Production, Food and Beverage Service, Housekeeping Utility anti-Bakery and Patisserie.

  • The Ministry of Tourism launched a special initiative called Hunar Se Rozgar Tak (HSRT) in the year 2009 - 10 for creation of employable skills amongst youth.

  • The initiative is full funded by the Ministry of Tourism.

  • The trainees should he in the age group of 18 - 28 years; each training programme is of short duration —6 to S weeks; and no fees charitable to the trainee.

Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Protsahan Yojana (PMRPY)

  • PMRPY Scheme has been designed lo incentivise employers for generation of new employment.

  • Government of India will be paying the 8.33 % EPS contribution of the employer for the new employment.

  • This scheme has a dual benefit, where, on the one hand, the employer is incentivised for increasing the employment base of workers in the establishment.

Literary Award Vyas Samman for Year 2017

  • Eminent Hindi writer Mamta Kalia will be honoured with literary award Vyas Samman for year 2017 for her novel “Dukkham Sukkham”.

  • The Vyas Samman is given to a Hindi literary work published in the past 10 years. Eminent literary critic and poet Ram Vilas Sharma is the first recipient of this award in 1991.

  • The writer will receive an amount of Rs. 3.5 Iakh as the prize money.

  • It is awarded annually by the K. K. Bina Foundation.

Centre for Science and Environment (CSE)

  • The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) is a public interest research and advocacy organization based in New Delhi.

  • The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) has been ranked the top environment policy think tanks in India and 16th at the global level.

  • The rank was given by The Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) of the Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania.

  • CSE publishes the fortnightly Magazine ‘Down to Earth’.

Mass Nesting of Olive Rid Leys Begins in Odisha

  • Starting the mass nesting this year more than 3,100 female olive ridley turtles have come out of the sea to the sandy beach of the Rushikulya rookery coast in Ganjam district of Odisha.

  • The Rushikulya coast is considered to be a major nesting site in the world and lakhs of olive ridleys come here every year to lay eggs.

  • Also known as the Pacific ridley sea turtle, Olive turtles are a medium-sized species of sea turtle found in warm and tropical waters,

  • Primarily in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

Antarctic Krill

  • The krill population in the Antarctic is under threat, due to a combination of factors including industrial-scale fishing and climate change.

  • Antarctic krill are one of the most abundant and successful animal species on Earth.

  • The loss of krill could endanger the entire Antarctic ecosystems, with predators, especially penguins, in potential danger.

  • Krill are essential feed for whales, penguins and seals.

- Published/Last Modified on: May 30, 2018

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