PROJECT 17A SHIP ‘HIMGIRI’
Why in News?
- ‘Himgiri’, the first of the three Project 17A ships being built at M/s Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited (GRSE), Kolkata was launched.
- The ship has taken its name and crest of the second Frigate of the Leander Class of ships, which incidentally was launched 50 years ago in 1970.
- Under the Project 17A program, a total of seven ships, four at Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) and three ships at GRSE are being built with enhanced stealth features, advanced indigenous weapon and sensor fit along with several other improvements.
- The launch of ‘Himgiri’ has showcased GRSE’s commitment towards the building of three state-of-the-art warships of P17A for Indian Navy.
- P17A ships are the first gas turbine propulsion and largest combat platforms ever built at GRSE.
‘Vision 2035: Public Health Surveillance in India’
Why in News?
- NITI Aayog released a white paper: Vision 2035: Public Health Surveillance in India with the vision:
- To make India’s public health surveillance system more responsive and predictive to enhance preparedness for action at all levels.
- Citizen-friendly public health surveillance system will ensure individual privacy and confidentiality, enabled with a client feedback mechanism.
- Improved data-sharing mechanism between Centre and states for better disease detection, prevention, and control.
- India aims to provide regional and global leadership in managing events that constitute a public health emergency of international concern.
- Vision 2035: Public Health Surveillance in India is a continuation of the work on health systems strengthening.
- It contributes by suggesting mainstreaming of surveillance by making individual electronic health records the basis for surveillance.
- Public health surveillance (PHS) is an important function that cuts across primary, secondary, and tertiary levels of care. Surveillance is ‘Information for Action.
- It envisions a citizen-friendly public health system, which will involve stakeholders at all levels, be it individual, community, health care facilities or laboratories, all while protecting the individual’s privacy and confidentiality.
UNESCO’s International Prize
Why in News?
- The UNESCO has decided to launch an international prize in the field of ‘creative economy’ in the name of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
- Starting November 2021, the dollar 50 thousand award will be given away once in two years for global economic initiatives of the youth.
- It will create a knowledge-sharing mechanism by capturing, celebrating and communicating best practice in the development of creative entrepreneurship.
- The award will create an opportunity to spread the ideology of Bangabandhu in the world and inspire the cultural workers to develop the creative economy.
- UNESCO has declared 2021 as ‘International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development’.
- Currently, there are 23 UNESCO International Awards in the name of international celebrities and organisations.
Cross-sector Initiative For Universal Health Coverage
Why in News?
- The Lancet Citizens’ Commission on Reimagining India’s Health System, a cross-sector initiative to develop a citizens’ roadmap to achieving universal health coverage (UHC) in India over a period of ten years, was launched.
- It was a first-of-its-kind participatory, countrywide initiative, in collaboration with world’s leading health journal The Lancet and the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute, Harvard University.
- To lay out the path to achieving UHC in India in the coming decade, working with all stakeholders.
What it will do?
- The Commission will formulate a roadmap for realising a resilient health system that offers comprehensive, accountable, accessible, inclusive, and affordable quality health care to all citizens in India.
- The Commission will be guided by four principles:
- first, UHC covers all health concerns;
- Secondly, prevention and long-term care are key.
- Thirdly, the concern is financial protection for all health costs, and
- Finally, aspiring for a health system that can be accessed by all who enjoy the same quality.
- The commission will enable participatory public engagement to develop a citizens’ blueprint for the implementation of UHC.
Indian Droughts and El Nino
- Droughts in India have historically been associated with El Nino, an anomalous warming of the equatorial Pacific.
- The recent study says Indian summer monsoon season in the past century may have been driven by atmospheric disturbances from the North Atlantic region.
- It seems, the researchers note, that winds in the upper atmosphere are interacting with a deep cyclonic circulation above the abnormally cold North Atlantic waters.
- Thus beyond looking at the Pacific Ocean it is important to consider other influences on the Indian monsoon from outside the tropics.
- The resulting wave of air currents, called a Rossby wave, curved down from the North Atlantic squeezed in by the Tibetan plateau and hit the subcontinent around mid August, suppressing rainfall and throwing off the monsoon that was trying to recover from the June slump.
- The meandering jet streams are called Rossby Waves.
- Rossby waves are natural phenomenon in the atmosphere and oceans due to rotation of earth.
- The Jet Stream is a geostrophic wind blowing horizontally through the upper layers of the troposphere, generally from west to east, at an altitude of 20,000 – 50,000 feet.
- The genesis of the Jet-streams is provided by kinds of gradients:
- Thermal gradient between pole and equator.
- Pressure gradient between pole and equator.
Insurance Information Bureau of India’s annual report
Why in News?
- More than half the vehicles on the road in India are running without any insurance cover — a mandatory provision under the Motor Vehicles Act.
- Nearly 57 per cent of the total vehicles on the road were uninsured as of March 2019, up from 54 per cent in March 2018, according to the Insurance Information Bureau of India’s annual report.
- The Insurance Information Bureau (IIB), set up by insurance regulator IRDAI.
- The bulk of uninsured vehicles are two-wheelers, with the numbers being as high as 66 per cent.
- In most cases, the renewals are not done after the first year.
- Nearly 75 per cent of the total vehicles in India consist of two-wheelers.
- According to the Motor Vehicles Act, 2019, it is mandatory for all vehicles to be insured with third-party vehicle insurance policy.
- Third-party or liability insurance covers the legal liability arising due to death or disability of third party loss or damage to their property.
3D printing Policy
Why in News?
- The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) will soon come up with a policy aimed at promoting 3D printing on an industrial scale and helping domestic companies “overcome technical and economic barriers” so that they can build supportive and ancillary facilities for world leaders in the technology, such as the US and China.
- The policy will help develop a “conducive ecosystem for design, development and deployment” of 3D printing and additive manufacturing.
- The global market for additive manufacturing is expected to reach $ 34.8 billion by 2024, which is growing at a compound annual growth rate of 23.2 per cent.
- 3D printing or additive manufacturing uses computer-aided designing to make prototypes or working models of objects by laying down successive layers of materials such as plastic, resin, thermoplastic, metal, fiber or ceramic.
- With the help of software, the model to be printed is first developed by the computer, which then gives instructions to the 3D printer.
Other Areas of Focus
- Other key areas of focus include the auto and ancillary auto and motor spare part business, such as engines, interior and exterior parts of luxury vehicles, or landing gear, complex brackets, and turbine blades.
- There can be some application of it in consumer electronics, printed circuit boards, clothing, toys and jewellery as well.
- Asia leads the world in 3D printing, and about 50 per cent of its market is cornered by China, followed by Japan at 30 per cent, and South Korea 10 per cent. But globally, the US remains the leader, with more than 35 per cent market share.
U.S. imposes CAATSA sanctions on Turkey
Why in News?
- The U.S. has imposed sanctions on NATO-ally Turkey for its purchase of Russia’s S-400 missile defence system.
- The issue of sanctions under Section 231 of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) for purchase of Russian arms is of particular interest to New Delhi, which is also in the process of buying the S-400 from Moscow.
- The United States made clear to Turkey at the highest levels and on numerous occasions that its purchase of the S-400 system would endanger the security of U.S. military technology and personnel and provide substantial funds to Russia’s defense sector, as well as Russian access to the Turkish armed forces and defense industry.
- Last year the U.S. had removed Turkey from its F-35 jet program over concerns that sensitive information could be accessed by Russia if Turkey used Russian systems along with U.S. jets.
Why in News?
- The carcass of a Gangetic dolphin was disposed in the Ganga without ascertaining the reason of death of the marine mammal that is supposed to be highly protected.
- If a dead Schedule I animal like a Gangetic dolphin is found, it is the duty of the forest department to take possession of the carcass for conducting a post mortem examination to find out the cause of
About Gangetic Dolphin
- The Gangetic river dolphin is India’s national aquatic animal.
- It is a Schedule I animal under the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972.
- It has been declared an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
- The dolphin is found in India, Bangladesh and Nepal.
- It is blind and finds its way and prey in river waters through echolocation. Bihar is home to around half of the estimated 3,000 Gangetic dolphins in India.
- Under the Wild Life (Protection) Act, special instructions have been given on how to deal with Schedule I animals.
- There are provisions of a three-year jail term and a fine of Rs 3,000-25,000 for possession of any body part of a Schedule I animal.
- Dolphins prefer water that is at least five to eight feet deep. They are usually found in turbulent waters, where there are enough fish for them to feed on.
- Gangetic dolphins live in a zone where there is little or no current, helping them save energy. If they sense danger, they can dive into deep waters. The dolphins swim from the no-current zone to the edges to hunt for fish and return.
- The Gangetic river dolphin is one of four freshwater dolphin species in the world.
- The other three are found in the Yangtze river in China (now extinct), the Indus river in Pakistan and the Amazon river in South America.
Worldwide Legal Wildlife Trade
Why in News?
- It is not just the illegal trade in wildlife that has been denuding populations worldwide.
- Even legal trade has increased manifold in the last three decades and has become highly unsustainable, according to a new report.
- The report has been prepared by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), an intergovernmental organisation established to improve the interface between science and policy on issues of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
According to the report
- The international legal wildlife trade has increased 500 per cent in value since 2005 and 2,000 per cent since the 1980s.
- The insufficient and inadequate regulation, globalisation of trade routes, lack of sufficient reporting and the links between poverty and illegal hunting, even the legal trade will become unsustainable in the future
- North America, Europe and some parts of Asia were net importers and consumers. Countries in South America, Africa, Southeast Asia and Oceania tended to be net suppliers, or had a large domestic trade, adding to traditional consumption patterns.
- The European Union and the United States were leading consumers of legally traded wildlife. The US was one of the largest legal importers of wildlife globally, largely for the pet trade.
- International trade in wildlife was a source of wild meat for consumption and of acquisition of animal products like fur, trophies, etc.
- Since 1975, international legal trade in wildlife had been regulated by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES has 183 countries, including India, as its signatories.
- The report noted that CITES had been able to reduce wildlife trade, drive up value of sustainably traded species and products and promote captive-breeding, ranching or farming as alternatives to wild capture.
- The international trade in a large number of wild species — principally fisheries and forestry resources — were not regulated under CITES, while the domestic use and trade of wildlife fell outside the purview of the Convention.