Expected Most Important Topics for UPSC - 2018 (Part - 6) (Download PDF)

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Mumbai 12th wealthiest city in the world - According to a report by New World Wealth, Mumbai, the economic hub of India is the 12th wealthiest city. Mumbai also features among the top to cities in terms of billionaire population.

  • The list of 15wealthiest cities was topped by New York with a total wealth of $3 trillion.

  • Among the 15 cities listed, San Francisco. Beijing, Shanghai, Mumbai and Sydney were the fastest growing in terms of wealth growth over the past 10 years.

Global Corruption Index

  • India’s rank on the Corruption Perception Index fell two notches to 81 in 2017 from 79 in 2016.

  • The Berlin-based non-government body Transparency International ranked 180 countries in 2017.

  • New Zealand was the least corrupt and Somalia was the most.

  • The 2017 index revealed — despite attempts to combat corruption, most countries were moving too slowly with their effort.

  • India is a worst regional offender of press freedom in Asia Pacific according to Corruption Perception Index.

ENCORE

  • The Eastern Naval Command Operational Readiness Exercise (ENCORE), Theatre Level Readiness and Operational Exercise concluded on the Eastern Seaboard by the Indian Navy and Indian Air Force aircrafts.

  • The exercise was conducted in phases to test various facets of war-fighting capabilities of the combat units.

  • The exercise was conducted in real time covering a vast expanse of Indian Ocean Region (bR).

Operation Cactus

  • In 1988 a group of Maldivians led by Abdullah Luthufi tried to overthrow then Maldivian Government.

  • The attempt was a failure due to the intervention of the Indian Armed Forces.

  • The operation was code named as Operation Cactus.

  • INS Godavari and Betwa were used by the Indian Navy in the operation.

Prithvi-II

  • India successfully test-fired its indigenously developed nuclear capable Prithvi-II missile from a test range in Odisha.

  • The surface to surface missile has strike range of 350km.

  • It is capable of carrying 500 - 1000 kilogram of warheads and is thrusted by liquid propulsion twin engines.

INS Chakra

  • Russian authorities have demanded over $20 million for rectifying the damage suffered by nuclear submarine INS Chakra.

  • INS Chakra is a Russia-made, nuclear-propelled, hunter-killer akula class submarine.

  • INS Chakra is one of the quietest nuclear submarines around, with noise levels next to zero.

  • INS Chakra has been taken on lease from Russia for 10 years and would provide the Navy the opportunity to train personnel and operate such nuclear-powered vessels.

  • The INS Chakra joined the Eastern Naval Command at Visakhapatnam in 2012.

Dakota DC3 Aircraft

  • Sir Chief Marshal (ACM) B. S. Dhanoa received a restored World War-II DC3 Dakota aircraft from a TAF veteran.

  • The gift deed was signed between ACM Dhanoa and Sir Cdre (Retd. ) Chandrasekhar at a handover ceremony.

  • The DC3 Dakota aircraft Parashurama bearing the Tail Number VP-905 will be part of the IAFs vintage fleet.

  • DC3-transport aircraft, the world’s first successful commercial airliner, readily adapted to military use during World War II.

ICGS Vajra

  • The Indian Coast Guard ship Vajra’, was decommissioned in Paradip.

  • The Indian Coast Guard ship rendered three decades of service in maritime security along the northeast coastal waters.

  • The ship monitored the coastal activities along with Odisha and West Bengal.

  • It was built by Mazagon Dock, named ‘Vajra’, after the weapon of Lord Indra, and commissioned on 1988.

Rnstom-2

  • DRDO successfully flew its Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) RUSTOM-2, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at its Aeronautical Test Range (STR) at Chitradurga.

  • Rustom-2 is developed on the lines of predator drones of the US to carry out surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) roles for the armed forces.

  • The significance of this flight is that this is the first flight in user configuration with higher power engine.

  • Rustom 2 is capable of carrying different combinations of payloads like synthetic aperture radar, electronic intelligence systems and situational awareness payloads.

Medaram Jatara

  • Medaram Jatara is a tribal Hindu festival of honouring the goddesses Sarakka celebrated in the state of Telangana.

  • During the festival, the tribals worship Sammakka’, the tribal folk goddess.

  • The festival is also called as Sammakka Saralamma Jatara.

Shigmo Festival

  • Shigmo is the traditional spring festival celebrated by farmers in rural Goa.

  • It is an annual float parade held in major cities of the stateperfoming the Goan folk art such as GhodeModni, Goff and Fugdi.

  • The parades consist of traditional folk and street dancers, dancing on the tunes of Dholtashas, flutes.

  • It was traditionally celebrated as the homecoming of the warriors who had left their homes and families at the end of Dusshera to fight invaders.

First International Kala Mela

  • First International Kala Mela is being inaugurated by the vice president in Delhi.

  • Lalit Kala Akademi, the premier institution for the promotion of Art and Culture is organizing an International Kala Mela (Arts Festival).

  • It is going to prove a boon to especially those artists who cannot afford to exhibit their works of art in the Art Galleries.

  • Central objective of Kala Mela is to focus on direct interaction between the artist and the connoisseur.

Sheen Khaki (Blue Skin)

  • It is an Afghan community in India who fled with their families from the tribal areas between Afghanistan and Pakistan during the Partition in 1947.

  • The women are part of a community of Pushtun Hindus that lived in the Baloch areas and belong to the Kakari tribes still living in afghan.

  • Pushtunsare an Iranic ethnic group who mainly live in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

  • They speak the Pashto language and adhere to Pashtunwali, which is a traditional set of ethics guiding individual and communal conduct.

Vadnagar

  • Gujarat and the Centre are jointly developing the historical and ancient town of Vadnagar as a major tourist hub.

  • The projects cover Vadnaga’s famous Kirti Toran, Sharniishtha lake, Hatkeshwar Temple and archaeological sites.

  • The town full is of sites that are related to Hinduism and Buddhism.

  • The famous Chinese traveler Hiuen Tsang has visited the place around AD 640 and referred to it as Anandpur.

  • It is also the birth place of Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Udhyagirl Caves

  • The Udavagiri caves, in Vidisha, Madhva Pradesh contain some of the oldest Hindu temples and iconographv, related to Vaishnavism, Shaivism and Shaktism.

  • They were built during the Gupta period (350 - 550 CE).

  • Though it is present north of Tropic of Cancer, it is believed that historically, on the day of summer solstice, the sun was directly overhead in this place, making Udhyagiri (Mount of sunrise) a place of worship.

  • It also houses some important Gupta age inscriptions.

Buried Pyramid City- Mexico

  • An Ancient pyramid city was discovered underground in heartland of Mexico.

  • They discovered the lost city known as Angamuco which contained 40, 000 buildings by using by using lasers to sends beams of light from an aircraft to the ground in order to construct a map of the area (LIDAR Technology).

  • The lost city was built by Purepecha who were rivals to the Aztecs around 1, 000 years ago.

Underwater Cave in Yucatan Peninsula

  • Recently a biggest flooded cave was found in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, by scuba divers.

  • Archaeologists explored that cave and found fossils of giant sloths and an elaborate shrine of the Mayan god of commerce.

  • The Yucatan peninsula is studded with monumental relics of the Maya people, whose cities drew upon an extensive network of sinkholes linked to subterranean waters known as cenotes.

  • Researchers believe that the water level in the caves has fluctuated over time and that they were a source of water in times of severe drought.

Global Theatre Olympics

  • The Vice President of India will inaugurate the 8th Global Theatre Olympics coming Saturday at the majestic Red Fort in New Delhi.

  • The theatrical extravaganza is being hosted for the first time in India by the National School of Drama under the aegis of Ministry of Culture, Government of India.

  • The theme of the 8th Theatre Olympics is “Flag of Friendship.

Maramon Convention

  • Maramon Convention is the Asia’s largest weeklong annual Christian meet.

  • The convention is organized in the vast river bed of Pampa near the Kozhencherry Bridge.

  • The ongoing 123rd convention at Maramon, Pathanamthitta, Kerala began with a call to conserve the river Pampa and the environment.

Dara Shukoh

  • An exhibition was conducted to showcase the forgotten Mughal Prince Dara Shukoh at Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, in New Delhi.

  • He was the eldest son of Emperor Shah Jahan and heir apparent to the Mughal throne.

  • The religious insight of the Mughal prince marks him out from most other Mughal rulers.

  • Dara Shukoh leaned towards the Chishti order of Sufism that is known to have promoted tolerance.

  • He commissioned the translation of all the Upanishads from Sanskrit to Persian for Muslim scholar to learn.

National River Conservation Plan

  • Under the National River Conservation Plan the river Sal project in Goa was sanctioned by the Ministry of Environment. Forest & Climate Change.

  • The aim of the plan is to prevent pollution of rivers and improving water quality.

  • The activities under National River Conservation Plan include following:

    • Sewage treatment plants for treating the diverted sewage.

    • Low cost sanitation works to prevent the open defecation on riverbanks.

    • Public awareness and public participation.

    • Electric crematoria to ensure proper cremation of the bodies brought to burning Ghats.

Prime Minister’s Research Fellow Scheme

  • Prime Minister’s Research Fellows (PM REY scheme aims to improve the quality of research by attracting the best talents across the country.

  • It will help in tapping the talent pool of the country for carrying out research indigenously in cutting edge science and technology domains.

  • Also, the scheme will address the shortage of quality faculties and our national priorities.

World Government Summit

  • PM Modi will address World Government Summit in his coming UAE Tour.

  • The World Government Summit is an annual event held in Dubai, UAE.

  • It brings together leaders in government for a global dialogue about governmental process and policies with a focus on the issues of futurism, technology and innovation.

  • The first World Government Summit was held in Dubai in 2013, and has been held annually since then.

  • In 2017, the World Government Summit held the first Global Dialogue for Happiness, a one-day event prior to the summit.

UN Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development

  • International Telecommunication Union and UNESCO set up the Broadband Commission for Digital Development to step-up UN efforts to meet the Millennium Development Goals (NDGs).

  • The Commission was established in May 2010 with the aim of boosting the importance of broadband on the international policy agenda.

  • The Commission has re-evaluated and launched new framework of Targets 2025 in support of “Connecting the other Half” of the world’s population.

  • It publishes the State of Broadband’ annual report.

Global Seed Vault

  • The Global Seed Vault marks its 10-year anniversary by adding new seed samples from all over the world.

  • The Global Seed Vault is located deep inside a mountain on Svalbard a remote Arctic island in a Norwegian archipelago.

  • Dubbed the “Noah’s Ark” of food crops the vault has the capacity to store up to 4.5 billion seeds.

Wakhan Corridor

  • The corridor is a narrow strip of inhospitable and barely accessible land in Afghanistan bordered by the mountains of Tajikistan and Pakistan, and extending all the way to China.

  • Wakhan corridor is known by its Persian name Bam-e-Dunya, or “roof of the worlds”.

  • The area is populated by the Wakhan, members of a nomadic tribe in the region.

Res Extra Commercium

  • A Latin phrase meaning ‘outside commerce’ is used by the government to restrict the tobacco industry’s legal trade rights.

  • The Res extra commercium doctrine dating back to the roman period would open the door to an outright ban on tobacco sales if a state so wished.

  • With an aim to curb tobacco consumption, the government has raised tobacco taxes, started smoking cessation campaigns and introduced laws requiring covering most of the package in health warning

MLCR

  • The Marginal Cost of Funds-based Lending Rate (MCLR) refers to the minimum interest rate of a bank below which it cannot lend.

  • Reserve Bank of India will link the base rate with the Marginal Cost of Funds based Lending Rates (MCLR).

  • RBI decided to shift from base rate to MCLR because the rates based on marginal cost of funds are more sensitive to changes in the policy rates.

Standing Deposit Facility Scheme

  • RBI uses array of instruments such as Cash Reserve Ratio. Open Market Operation. Market Stabilisation Scheme to absorb excess liquidity in the economy.

  • These measures are considered as Liquidity Adjustment Facility (IAF) to bring the liquidity gap under control.

  • Now, there is a proposal to introduce Standing Deposit Facility Scheme (SDFS) which was already recommended by Urjit Patel Committee in 204.

  • It is to empower RBI with an additional instrument for liquidity management.

Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT)

  • India’s City Union Bank suffered a cyber-attack via the SWIFT financial platform.

  • It is a messaging network that financial institutions use to securely transmit information and instructions through a standardized system of codes.

  • SWIFT is headquartered in Belgium.

  • It also brings the financial community together- at global, regional and local levels - to shape market practice, define standards and debate issues of mutual interest or concern.

Echidnas

  • Echidnas also called spiny anteaters are mammals.

  • Echidnas are one of the world’s oldest surviving mammals.

  • They are egg-laying mammals.

  • It is listed as least concern’ in IUCN classification.

  • However, the short-beaked echidna found only in Australia and Papua Guinea is threatened.

  • The main threats are land clearing and habitat loss, traffic feral cats and potentially the rapidly changing climate.

Red Sanders

  • Pterocarpus santalinus occurs in the Southern Tropical Dry Deciduous Forests.

  • It is generally found at altitudes of 150 - 900m.

  • It prefers lateritic and gravelly soil and cannot tolerate water logging.

  • Red Sanders has a highly restrictive distribution in the South Eastern portion of Indian peninsula to which it is endemic.

  • Red Sanders is said to be used in the making of oriental musical instruments like Shamisen, Koto and Erhu.

Shell Fish Reef

  • Virtually all of Australia’s shellfish reefs have disappeared, making them the country’s most threatened ocean ecosystem.

  • Shellfish reefs are made up of oysters and mussels.

  • They accrete dead shell material such that the reef grows in size and mass over time.

  • Just like coral reefs, they support the growth of important fish species whilst also helping to improve water quality and increase biodiversity.

Ring Tailed Lemurs (Lemur Catta)

  • Lemurs are primates found only on the African island of Madagascar and some tiny neighboring islands.

  • Ring-tailed lemurs have powerful scent glands and use their unique odor as communication tool and even as a kind of weapon.

  • It is under the endangered category in the IUCN red list.

  • It is listed on Appendix I of CITES.

  • Ring tailed lemurs is hunted for food and frequently kept as a pet.

Kuthiyottam Ritual

  • The Kerala State Commission for the Protection of Child Rights has registered a suo motu case in connection with the Kuthiyottam ritual.

  • The commission said it would examine if the ritual, reportedly involving piercing children’s sides with a hook, violated child rights in any manner.

  • The Kuthiyottam ritual is usually performed every year during the Pongala festival at the Attukal Bhagavathy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.

  • The Attukal Pongala festival is the largest congregation of women for a festival in the world.

  • The ritual can only be performed by women.

Nabakalebar Festival

  • Commemorative coins in denominations of ₹10 and ₹1000 have been released on Lord Jagannath’s Nabakalebar festival.

  • The Nabakalebara is an ancient ritual associated with most of the Jagannath Temples when the Idols of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra and Sudarshan are replaced by a new set of Idols.

  • The Deities are made from a special type of Neem wood known as Daru Bramha.

  • The most recent ceremony was in 2015, following the 1996 ceremony.

  • This festival is celebrated at the Jagannath Temple in Puri, Orissa.

Jackfruit to Be Kerala’s State Fruit

  • Jackfruit is set to be declared as the official fruit of Kerala.

  • The core objective of the government was to give a fillip to the production and sale of jackfruit and its value - added products.

  • Elephant is the state animal of Kerala, while ‘great hornbill’ is the state bird and ‘kanikkonna’, the official flower.

  • The state had also recently declared pearl spot, popularly known as ‘karimeen’, as its official fish.

Madhavpur Mela

  • Ministry of Culture is organizing the Madhavpur Mela in Madhavpur Ghed, District Porbandar in Gujarat in a grand way.

  • The purpose of this integration is to bring various parts of the country especially the North - East, close to each other under the banner of Ek Bharat Shrestha Bharat announced by the Prime Minister.

  • The Madhavpur Mela of Gujarat shares its connect to the Mishmi Tribe of Arunachal Pradesh.

Geomagnetic Storm

  • There were reports that Earth will be hit by a massive magnetic storm on March 18.

  • However, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has found that there was no basis for recent reports saying Earth would be hit by a massive geomagnetic storm.

  • Geomagnetic storms are caused when events such as solar flares can send higher than normal levels of radiation towards Earth.

  • Effects from the geomagnetic storm can range from the appearance of auroras or the northern and southern lights to disruptions in communications systems due to high radiation.

“E - Tribes India”

  • The government has launched “E - Tribes”, TRIFED’s websites.

  • It includes www.tribesindia.com, www.trifed.in and Retail Inventory Software and M - commerce app.

  • Going Digital will lead to expansion of tribal commerce and the availability of tribal products over large area, reaping greater benefits for tribal artisans.

  • TRIFED functioning under the administrative control of Ministry of Tribal Affairs.

  • It also organizes exhibitions like National Tribal Craft Expo called “Aadi Mahotsav” etc. in which it promotes and markets tribal products.

India Convention Promotion Bureau

  • The government of India has been providing necessary support to India Convention Promotion Bureau to promote India as a venue for International Conferences and Exhibitions.

  • The India Convention Promotion Bureau (ICPB) has been set up under the patron age of the Ministry of Tourism.

  • It has been set up to promote India as a venue for International Conferences and Exhibitions.

  • It is a non - profit organization, with members comprising national airlines, hotels, travel agents, tour operators, tourist transport operators, conference organizers, etc.

New Vehicle Scrappage Policy

  • Government’s New Vehicle Scrappage policy was recently cleared by the Prime Minister’s Office and is awaiting the approval of the GST Council.

  • The policy targets to take polluting vehicles out of the roads and help the automobile industry register higher sales.

  • The policy mentions about vehicles older than 20 years becoming eligible for benefits under the scrappage scheme.

  • The scheme would now come in effect from April 1, 2020, coinciding with the implementation of the BS - VI norms.

Diabetes Has Five Types, Say Scientists

  • Scientists have unveiled a revised classification for diabetes. There are five distinct types of diabetes that can occur in adulthood, rather than the two currently recognised.

  • Today, Diabetes has become a major public health concern in India.

  • Some 420 million people around the world today suffer from diabetes.

  • Significance of this discovery:

    • This is the first step towards personalised treatment of diabetes.

    • This discovery could lead to better treatments and help doctors more accurately predict life - threatening complications from the disease.

RITES

  • Indian Railways recently handed over 18 microprocessor controlled Indian locomotives to Myanma Railways.

  • They are supplied by RITES and manufactured by Diesel Locomotive Works, Varanasi, India.

  • RITES is a Public Sector Enterprise under the Ministry of Railways.

  • It is the export arm of the railways undertaking various projects worldwide.

  • RITES has engaged in the supply of Railway rolling stock (locomotives, coaches, wagons, permanent way maintenance vehicles), maintenance of railway infrastructure, technical studies, training of Myanmar Railway officials.

Permanent Indus Commission

  • India and Pakistan will hold a meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission to discuss various issues under the Indus Waters Treaty.

  • This will be the 114th meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission (PIC), which should meet at least once a year as per the Indus Waters Treaty (IWT).

  • The meeting of the PIC is held alternately in India and Pakistan every year.

  • The PIC had last met in March 2017 in Islamabad.

  • The Indus Waters Treaty is water - distribution treaty between India and Pakistan, brokered by the World Bank.

  • Permanent Indus Commission is a bilateral commission of officials from India - Pakistan, created to implement and manage goals of Indus Waters Treaty.

Cuvette Centrale Region

  • To protect the Cuvette Centrale region in the Congo Basin from unregulated land use and prevent its drainage and degradation, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Republic of Congo and Indonesia have jointly signed the Brazzaville declaration that promotes better management and conservation of this globally important carbon store.

  • The declaration was signed on the sidelines of the Third Partners Meeting of the Global Peatlands Initiative, taking place in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo.

  • The Global Peatlands Initiative is an effort by leading experts and institutions to save peatlands as the world’s largest terrestrial organic carbon s tock and to prevent it being emitted into the atmosphere.

Rydberg Polarons

  • An international team of physicists have successfully created a “giant atom” and filled it with ordinary atoms, creating a new state of matter termed “Rydberg polarons”.

  • These atoms are held together by a weak bond and is created at very cold temperatures.

  • It uses ideas from two different fields: Bose Einstein Condensation and Rydberg atoms.

Use of these Rydberg polarons:

  • A particularly interesting implication is for cosmology.

  • Some theories of dark matter postulate that it is a cosmic Bose Einstein Condensate, perhaps composed of an as - yet - unknown type of particle.

HT Cotton

  • Department of Biotechnology in the Ministry of Science and Technology has constituted a Field Inspection and Scientific Evaluation Committee (FISEC) to investigate the matter of illegal cultivation of HT cotton.

  • Issue: The cultivation of BG - III or HT cotton has Department of Biotechnology in the Ministry of Science and Technology has constituted a Field Inspection and Scientific Evaluation Committee (FISEC) to investigate the matter of illegal cultivation of HT cotton.

  • However, there are several media reports and complaints regarding the illegal or unauthorised cultivation of HT cotton in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat and Maharashtra.

CIMON (Crew Interactive MObile CompanioN)

  • Airbus, an aeronautics company based in Netherlands, is developing CIMON (Crew Interactive MObile CompanioN), an AI - based space assistant for Germany’s DLR Space Administration.

  • Described by its creators as a “flying brain”, this 3D - printed artificial in Airbus, an aeronautics company based in Netherlands, is developing CIMON (Crew Interactive MObile CompanioN), an AI - based space assistant for Germany’s DLR Space Administration.

  • CIMON will be the first AI - based mission and flight assistance system.

  • The entire structure of CIMON is made up of plastic and metal, created using 3D printing.

Gallium Joins Graphene in the Second Dimension

  • Researchers have isolated a 2D form of the soft metal gallium, dubbed “gallenene, ” which could make for efficient, thin metal contacts in electronic devices.

  • Gallium is a metal with a low melting point.

  • It has a low melting point of just below 30°C (86°F) .

  • That makes it a great candidate for applications that need liquid metals at roughly room temperature.

  • Gallenene comes in zigzag and hexagonal structures, and has the unusual ability to change the properties of its solid support material, making it promising as a contact material in 2D devices.

“HISAR GOURAV”

  • Scientists at the ICAR - Central Institute for Research on Buffaloes (CIRB) have produced cloned calf ‘HISAR GOURAV’.

  • With this achievement CIRB becomes world’s third and India’s second institute to produce cloned buffalo.

  • The first successful cloning was achieved by the National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal in 2010.

  • Samrupa is the world’s first Murrah buffalo calf cloned using a simple “Hand guided cloning technique”.

Copernicus Programme

  • India has joined Europe’s mega global arrangement of sharing data from Earth observation satellites, called Copernicus.

  • Under this arrangement, the European Commission intends to provide India with free, full and open access to the data from the Copernicus Sentinel family of satellites using high bandwidth connections.

  • It is intended that ISRO’s satellite data would be made available for distribution on the European ‘Copernicus hub’.

  • Copernicus is the new name for the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security programme, previously known as GMES.

  • This initiative is headed by the European Commission (EC) in partnership with the European Space Agency (ESA).

James Webb Space Telescope

  • NASA has delayed the launch of its much awaited, $8 billion James Webb Space Telescope — set to be the world’s biggest space observatory — until at least May 2020.

  • The James Webb Space Telescope, also called Webb or JWST, is a large, space - based observatory, optimized for infrared wavelengths, which will complement and extend the discoveries of the Hubble Space Telescope.

  • It will cover longer wavelengths of light than Hubble and will have greatly improved sensitivity.

  • This space - based observatory is named after James E. Webb (1906 - 1992), NASA’s second administrator.

CleanSeas Campaign

  • New Zealand has joined the United Nations - led CleanSeas campaign to rid oceans of plastic.

  • More than 40 other countries have already signed up.

  • Scientists estimate that there are over 150 million tonnes of plastics in the ocean today.

  • The campaign aims to engage governments, the general public, civil society and the private sector in the fight against marine plastic by reducing the use of non - re coverable and single - use plastics.

  • The CleanSeas campaign was launched by the UN Environment in February 2017.

  • The campaign contributes to the goals of the Global Partnership on Marine Litter.

Phirangipuram to Be Andhra’s First All - Women Rail Station

  • Phirangipuram is all to be Andhra Pradesh’s first all - women rail station.

  • It will be a big step in addressing gender equality in the biggest public sector organisation in the country.

  • It will be the third - of - its - kind railway station in the country after Jaipur’s Gandhi Nagar and Mumbai’s Matunga.

World’s Largest Solar Park Shakti Sthala Launched in Karnataka

  • The Karnataka government recently inaugurated the world’s largest solar park, Shakti Sthala.

  • It is located in Tumkur district, about 180km from Bengaluru.

  • The park ties in with the centre’s scheme to generate 100 gigawatts (GW) of solar power by 2020. It has a capacity of 2, 000 MW.

  • It is part of the “Karnataka Solar Policy 2014 - 2021” which aims to decrease dependence on traditional power sources and move to environmentally friendly ones to meet the growing power needs of the state.

Udyam Sakhi Portal

  • The Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) has launched a portal for women entrepreneurs of India Udyam Sakhi Portal.

  • The portal is a network for nurturing entrepreneurship and creating business models for low cost products and services in order to empower women and make them self - reliant and self – sufficient.

  • The portal provides assistance through its platform for entrepreneurship learning tools, incubation facility, training programs for fund raising, providing mentors, one - on - one investor meet, provide market survey facility and technical assistance.

Calcium Silicate Perovskite

  • For the first time, scientists have found Earth’s fourth most abundant mineral - calcium silicate perovskite - at Earth’s surface.

  • Scientists found the calcium silicate perovskite within a diamond mined from less than one kilometre beneath Earth’s crust, at South Africa’s famous Cullinan Mine, best known as the source of two of the largest diamonds in the British Crown Jewels.

  • Silicate perovskite may form up to 93 % of the lower mantle, and the magnesium iron form is considered to be the most abundant mineral in Planet Earth, making up 38 % of its volume.

Diu Becomes the First and Only Union Territory to Be 100 % Solar Energy Efficient

  • In a major boost for utilisation of renewable energy in the country, Diu has become the first and only Union Territory to be full y solar energy efficient.

  • Diu’s geographical area is limited only to 42 square kilometers; however, despite the shortage of land, solar power plants have been installed at over 50 acres of land.

  • A total of 13 megawatts of electricity from the solar power - generating systems is generated, with 3MW generated by rooftop solar plants and 10MW by other solar power plants.

Reciprocal Logistics Support Deal

  • A reciprocal logistics support deal has been signed between the respective armed forces of India and France.

  • The deal will facilitate the French and Indian armed forces to receive logistical support, supplies and services from each other during authorised port visits, joint exercises, joint training, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts.

  • The deal, which is similar to the logistical support pact with the US, is an indicator of the strategic depth and maturity in defence ties between the two countries.

MILES – 18

  • As part of the tenth edition of MILAN, the first ever multi - nation naval exercise at sea called MILES - 18 is being held in the Andaman Sea.

  • Theme ‘Friendship across the seas’.

  • Participating countries: Australia, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

  • Apart from enhancing inter - operability, the exercise will enable honing of search and rescue operations procedures, maritime interdiction operations, core operational skills and exercise a variety of maritime security scenarios.

Kinzhal’ Missile

  • The Russian Aerospace Forces have conducted the first successful test firing of the air - launched Kinzhal (Dagger) hypersonic missile.

  • Kinzhal is claimed to be a strategic air - to - surface strike missile.

  • The missile is claimed to have maneuverable flight characteristics not typically seen in hypersonic, solid fuel missiles.

  • The missile is reported to have a range of 1, 200 miles (approximately 2, 000 kilometers).

Country’s ‘tallest’ Flag Unfurled in Belagavi

  • The largest national flag in the country was recently hoisted at Belagavi.

  • The national flag is 110m (365 feet) high from the base plate to the top.

  • The size of the flag is 120X80 ft. It will weigh 500 kg.

Okhla Bird Sanctuary

  • Foundation Stone for Redevelopment And Upgardation of Okhla Bird Sanctuary was recently laid.

  • Okhl a Bird Sanctuary is located close to New Delhi and is one of the 467 Important Bird Areas (IBA) of the country and is home to a large number of resident, as well as migratory birds like grey - headed fish eagle, Baikal teal, Baer’s pochard and Sarus crane.

  • Okhla Bird Sanctuary, belonging to the State of Uttar Pradesh, has an area of 400 ha, out of which 120 ha falls within the National Capital Region of Delhi.

Gulf Shield 1

  • Royal Saudi Navy is holding exercises “Gulf Shield 1” in the Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, and Oman Sea.

  • The drill, which is considered the largest military drill in the region in terms of diversity of expertise and quality of weapons, aims at raising the military readiness of the participating countries, modernizing the joint mechanisms and enhancing coordination and cooperation.

  • “Gulf Shield 1” is part of a series of exercises the fleet has carried out in the area aiming to raise combat readiness, gain the necessary skills, and improve ability to perform the essential leadership services.

India’s First in Sect Museum Opens in Tamil Nadu

  • India’s first insect museum with the state of the art amenities was recently unveiled in Tamil Nadu Agricultural University campus in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu.

  • It was inaugurated by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswamy.

  • The museum has been established at an area of 6, 691 sqft. It is fully dedicated to insects.

  • It will provide information about insects through images, videos and models of their unique behaviour, habits and habitats.

- Published/Last Modified on: May 30, 2018

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Monthy-updated, fully-solved, large current affairs-2018 question bank(more than 2000 problems): Quickly cover most-important current-affairs questions with pointwise explanations especially designed for IAS, CBSE-NET, Bank-PO and other competetive exams.