02nd-05th September 2021 Daily Current Affairs

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Questions :

1)Consider the following statements about Neelakurinji.

  1. It is a shrub that is found only in the shola forests of the Western Ghats.
  2. Neelakurinji blossoms during September-October every year.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

 a) 1 only

 b) 2 only

 c) Both 1 and 2

 d) Neither 1 nor 2

2)Consider the following statements.

  1. The Easterly Jet stream is responsible for the burst of monsoon in India.
  2. The shift in the ITCZ from equator towards the north Indian plains during summer withdraws the Westerly Jet streams.

Which of the above statements is/are incorrect?

 a) 1 only

 b) 2 only

 c) Both 1 and 2

 d) Neither 1 nor 2

3) Indira Point is located at

 a) South Andaman

 b) Little Andaman

 c) Great Nicobar

 d) Car Nicobar

4)The Congress split in 1907 was due to the issue of

 a) Increasingly religious tones in the Indian National Movement

 b) Economic ideology of state-led development of India

 c) Methodology of struggle against the British

 d) Grant of concessions to the All-India Muslim League

5)The Lucknow Session, 1916 was special in many respects. Consider the following statements regarding this session.

  1. Congress and All India Muslim League signed the historic Lucknow Pact.
  2. It marked the re-union of the Moderates and Extremists.
  3. Annie Besant was the president of Lucknow session.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

a) 1, 3
b) 1, 2
c) 2, 3
d) 1, 2, 3

6)Consider the following statements regarding Partition of Bengal in 1905.

  1. It was ordered by Lord Curzon, the then Viceroy of India.
  2. Program of Swadeshi was adopted to protest against the division.
  3. It was annulled after the First World War ended.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

a) 2 only
b) 1, 2
c) 1, 3
d) 1, 2, 3

7)Podzolisation’ leading to podsolic soils is a phenomenon most noticed in which of these forest types?

 a) Equatorial Moist Evergreen Forest

 b) Mediterranean Forests

 c) Boreal forests

 d) Tundra vegetation

8)Consider the following statements regarding Alluvial soils.

1)Alluvial soils are suitable for the growth of sugarcane, paddy and pulse crops.

2)Alluvial soils contain adequate proportion of potash, phosphoric acid and lime.

Which of the above statements is/are incorrect?

 a) 1 only

 b) 2 only

 c) Both 1 and 2

 d) Neither 1 nor 2

9)Mangrove forests can be found in which of the following river deltas?

  1. Cauvery
  2. Krishna
  3. Mahanadi
  4. Godavari

Select the correct answer code:

 a) 1, 2, 3

 b) 1, 3, 4

 c) 2, 3, 4

 d) 1, 2, 3, 4

Prelims Specific News Items

Mumbai Climate Action Plan (MCAP) :-

Amid warnings of climate change leading to extreme weather events in the city, the civic body has started preparing the Mumbai Climate Action Plan (MCAP).

It will look at climate resilience with mitigation and adaptation strategies by focusing on six areas —

  • Sustainable waste management
  • Urban greening and Biodiversity
  • Urban flooding and Water Resource Management
  • Building Energy Efficiency
  • Air Quality and
  • Sustainable Mobility

The plan is expected to be ready by November ahead of the United Nations Climate Change (COP26) conference at Glasgow, Scotland.

Why does Mumbai need a climate action plan?

Mumbai’s climate action plan will help set a vision and implement strategies to fight these climate challenges with mitigation and adaptation steps.

Flash floods: As per a study conducted by the World Resource Institute (WRI) India, the city will face two major climate challenges — the rise in temperature, and extreme rain events which will lead to flooding.

Temperature rise: The city has seen a constant rise in temperature after 2007, and a substantial increase in intense rainfall and storm events in the last five years.

Sea level rise: A recent report from the IPCC has warned that at least 12 Indian coastal cities including Mumbai will face sea rise of 0.1 metres to 0.3 metres in next three decades due to climate change.

2)Operation Devi Shakti

Operation Devi Shakti is an ongoing operation of the Indian Armed Forces to evacuate Indian citizens and foreign nationals after the fall of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to the Taliban.

3)Ladakh has adopted two endangered species, snow leopard and black-necked crane, as State animal and State bird, two years after it was carved out as a separate Union Territory (UT) from the erstwhile State of J&K.

Snow Leopard:-

The snow leopard (Panther unica) and black-necked crane (Grus nicricollis).

Snow leopard, whose numbers are dwindling worldwide, has been categorized as “vulnerable” in the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List.

In total, there are about 7,500 snow leopards left in the world, out of which 500 are in India.

However, experts state that the population of snow leopards is between 200-300 in Ladakh alone.

Black-necked Crane:-

The black-necked crane is found in eastern Ladakh’s high-altitude wetlands and marshes.

It is mostly listed as Near Threatened on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red list.

Considered loyal couples, they are only found in Ladakh’s Changthang region. They arrive in March for breeding and migrate by October end or early November.

It was the State bird of J&K before August 5, 2019.

4) A contingent of 200 Army personnel will participate in the multinational Exercise ZAPAD 2021 being held at Nizhniy, Russia.

ZAPAD 2021 :-

ZAPAD is one of the theatre-level exercises of Russian armed forces and will focus primarily on operations against terrorists.

The NAGA Battalion group participating in the exercise will feature an all arms combined task force.

The exercise aims to enhance military and strategic ties amongst the participating nations while they plan and execute this exercise.

In all, 17 countries have been invited by Russia for the exercise. Of these nine are Participating countries which include Mongolia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Serbia, Russia, India, and Belarus.

The other eight countries are Observers which include Pakistan, China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Uzbekistan, and Sri Lanka.

5) About Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA)

The TSA was formed in 2001 as an International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) partnership for sustainable captive management of freshwater turtles and tortoises.

This alliance arose in response to the rampant and unsustainable harvest of Asian turtle populations to supply Chinese markets, a situation known as the Asian Turtle Crisis.

6)Carrying out the first-ever comprehensive analysis of blue stragglers, Indian researchers found that half of the blue stragglers in their sample are formed through mass transfer from a close binary companion star.

What are Blue Stragglers?

A blue straggler is a main-sequence star in an open or globular cluster that is more luminous and bluer than stars at the main sequence turnoff point for the cluster.

The most likely explanation is that blue stragglers are the result of stars that come too close to another star or similar mass object and collide.

The newly-formed star has thus a higher mass and occupies a position on the HR diagram which would be populated by genuinely young stars.

One-third of them are likely formed through collisions of 2 stars, and the remaining are formed through interactions of more than 2 stars.

How are they formed? :-

A bunch of stars born at the same time from the same cloud form a star cluster.

As time passes, each star evolves differently depending on its mass.

The most massive and bright stars evolve and move off the main sequence creating a bend in their track, known as the turnoff.

Stars above this bend or brighter and hotter stars are not expected in a cluster, as they leave the main sequence to become red giants.

But in 1953, Allan Sandage found that some stars seem to be hotter than the turnoff of the parent cluster.

6) Durand Line :-

The Durand Line is a legacy of the 19th century Great Game between the Russian and British empires in which Afghanistan was used as a buffer by the British against a feared Russian expansionism to its east.

The agreement demarcating what became known as the Durand Line was signed on November 12, 1893 between the British civil servant Henry Mortimer Durand and Amir Abdur Rahman, then the Afghan ruler.

Abdur Rahman became king in 1880, two years after the end of the Second Afghan War in which the British took control of several areas that were part of the Afghan kingdom.

He was essentially a British puppet.

His agreement with Durand demarcated the limits of his and British India’s “spheres of influence” on the Afghan “frontier” with India.

The line stretches from the border with China to Afghanistan’s border with Iran.

7)Glue Grant Scheme :-

Under the glue grant, announced in this year’s budget, institutions in the same city would be encouraged to share resources, equipment and even allow their students to take classes from each other.

This is the first step for multidisciplinary.

We intend to start this from the second semester of the current academic year.

Ultimately, faculty will be able to design joint courses.

This also meant that institutions need not duplicate work by developing the same capacities, but would able to build on each other’s expertise.

Credit bank :-

The first step would be the academic credit bank, which would have to be adopted separately by the academic council of each university to kick off implementation.

To start with, the system would allow students to attain qualifications by amassing credits rather than specific durations on campus.

A certain number of credits would add up to a certificate, then a diploma and then a degree, allowing for multiple entry and exit points.

Students can earn up to 40% of their credits in online Swayam classes, rather than in the physical classroom. In the future, these credits will hold validity across different institutions.

8) The government in Tamil Nadu has announced the construction of a memorial in Villupuram to people killed in police firing and clashes in 1987, during a movement demanding reservation for the Vanniyar community.

Vanniyar Movement :-

Vanniyar are one of the largest and most consolidated backward communities in the state.

They had raised massive protests in the mid-1980s demanding 20% reservation in the state, and 2% in central services.

Their movement was backed by the Justice Party as well as the Self-Respect Movement.

The agitation began in 1986 with activists sending hundreds of letters and telegrams to then Chief Minister M G Ramachandran seeking an audience.

8)Breakthrough Infection :- A case of Covid-19 that arises in someone who’s been fully immunized—that is, 14 days after their final dose of the vaccine—is known as a breakthrough infection. The term implies that the virus “broke through a protective barrier provided by the vaccine.”

9) Kerala panchayat office bans ‘sir’, ‘madam’ :- The Mathur gram panchayat in Kerala’s Palakkad district has become the first local body in the country to ban the use of salutations like ‘Sir’ and ‘Madam’.
A special meeting of the panchayat council on Tuesday took the historic decision that could likely kickstart a wave of reforms in the use of official language.

The panchayat viewed salutations like ‘Sir’ and ‘Madam’ as remnants of the colonial rule.

10)High honour for Naval Aviation:- President Ram Nath Kovind will award the President’s Colour to Indian Naval Aviation at a ceremonial parade to be held at INS Hansa, Goa, on September 6. The President’s Colour is the highest honour bestowed on a military unit in recognition of its exceptional service to the
nation.
Naval Aviation came into being with acquisition of the first Sealand aircraft on January 13, 1951 and the commissioning of INS Garuda, the first Naval Air Station, on May 11, 1953.

The Navy was the first among the armed forces to be awarded the President’s Colour on May 27, 1951 by then President Rajendra Prasad, as per the statement.

11) About ILO:

Established as an agency for the League of Nations following World War I.

Established by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919.

It became the first specialised agency of the United Nations (UN) in the year 1946.

It got the Nobel Peace Prize in 1969.

It is the only tripartite U.N. agency. It brings together governments, employers and workers.

Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.

Key reports:

  • World Employment and Social Outlook.
  • Global Wage Report.

12) Ronaldo surmounts another peak:- Cristiano Ronaldo became the all-time top scorer in men’s international football with two late goals as Portugal beat the Republic of Ireland 21, while holder France drew 11 with Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2022 World Cup qualifying on Wednesday.

Ronaldo broke Irish hearts with an 89th minute equaliser that took him past Iranian Ali Daei’s record of 109.

13)China bans reality talent shows :- China banned reality talent programmes and ordered broadcasters to promote more masculine representations of men, in a wide ranging crackdown on “immoral” pop culture Beijing believes is leading young people astray.

14) Indian biologist wins global award for turtle conservation:- Indian biologist Shailendra Singh has been awarded the Behler Turtle Conservation Award for bringing three critically endangered turtle conservation species back from the brink of extinction.

A press statement issued by the headquarters of the Turtle Survival Alliance earlier this week said: “For some species, such as the red-crowned roofed turtle (Batagur kachuga), northern river terrapin (Batagur baska), and black softshell turtle (Nilssonia nigricans).

15) Deputy Speaker :-

The Deputy Speaker of the Lok Sabha is the Vice-Presiding Officer of the House. He/She acts as the Presiding Officer in case of leave or absence caused by death or illness of the Speaker of the Lok Sabha. 

The Deputy Speaker is elected in the very first meeting of the Lok Sabha after the general elections for a term of 5 years from amongst the members of the Lok Sabha. 

He/She holds office till either he ceases to be a Member of the Lok Sabha or he himself resigns form the Lok Sabha. He/She can be removed from office by a resolution passed in the Lok Sabha by a majority of its members. He/She is supposed to resign form his original party because as a Deputy Speaker, he has to remain impartial. 

Deputy chairman becomes the chairman of the committee of which it is member.

16) Content Removed from the DU English:- According to DU sources, the three texts have been removed due to their gruesome sexual content, and portrayal of the Indian military in poor light.

The issue came to light late Wednesday when some DU Academic Council members dissented with the Oversight Committee, which is currently revising the university syllabus, over the decision to drop the three texts, alleging “a prejudice against the representation of Dalits, tribals, women and sexual minorities”.

However, DU sources pointed out that Padma Vibhushan recipient and upper-caste writer Mahasweta Devi’s short story Draupadi has been removed from the syllabus due to its gruesome sexual content.

Bama’s Sangati and Sukirtharini’s My Body — the other two texts — also talk about caste and gender discrimination faced by Dalit women.

17) Footprints of 3 dinosaur species found in Thar desert :-

In a major discovery, footprints of three species of dinosaurs have been found in the Thar desert in Rajasthan’s Jaisalmer district, proving the presence of the giant reptiles in the western part of the State, which formed the seashore to the Tethys Ocean during the Mesozoic era.

The footprints, made in the sediment or silt of the seashore, later become permanently stone-like. They belong to three species of dinosaurs — Eubrontes cf. giganteus, Eubrontes glenrosensis and Grallator tenuis. While the giganteus and glenrosensis species have 35 cm footprints, the footprint of the third species was found to be 5.5 cm.

The dinosaur species are considered to be of the theropod type, with the distinguishing features of hollow bones and feet with three digits. All the three species, belonging to the early Jurassic period.

18) India, U.S. sign project agreement on air-launched UAV:- India and the United States signed a project agreement (PA) on July 30 for an AirLaunched Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (ALUAV) under the ambit of the Defence Technology and Trade Initiative (DTTI).

It was a significant step towards deepening technology collaboration between the two nations through the co-development of equipment, it stated.
The DTTI’s main aim was to bring a sustained leadership focus on promoting collaborative technology exchange
and creating opportunities for coproduction and co-development of future technologies for the military forces of both nations.

19) Experts flag diversion of fresh water from Brahmani river :- Environmentalists on Friday expressed concern over the massive diversion of fresh water from the Brahmani river basin, which could pose a grave threat to the famous mangrove vegetation in Odisha. Bhitarkanika — a notified Ramsar wetland — is spread over 195 sq. km and is home to 62 mangrove species. Besides, 1,600 salt water crocodiles crawl on the mudflats of the Bhitarkanika mangrove forest.

Brahmani River:- Brahmani river is formed by the combined waters of Koel and Sankh rivers at Vedavyasa near Rourkela of Sundargarh District.

Major Tributaries: Koel, Kuradhi, Mankara, Samakoi, Ramiala, Karo, Sankh, Rukura, Gohira, Tikira, Singdajhor, Nigra, Barjor, Nandira

Major Distributaries: Kharasuan

The Brahmani is 799 km in length.

Brahmani, the second major river in Odisha, emerges from the combined waters of South Koel and Sankh rivers at Vedvyasa near Rourkela in the Sundargarh district.

The left bank tributary of Brahmani river, the South Koel originates near to Nagri village in the Ranchi district of Jharkhand state. After its confluence with Karo river in the Singhbhum district, it is known as Koel.

From Manoharpur, Koel flows in the southwest direction for about 54 km upto Vedvyasa, where the right bank tributary of Brahmani, the Sankh River, joins with it.

River Sankh originates at an elevation of 1000 m near village Lupungpat in the Ranchi district of Jharkhand state.

River Brahmani traverses southward through the valleys incised in the Gadjat Hills to form the famous Gangpur Basin. In this area, the Brahmani river is joined by several fast-flowing tributaries.

The deltaic region of Brahmani starts from Jenapur at a river distance of 315.00 km, where the Kalamitra island divides the river into two branches.

Mangroves grow in brackish water. Proportionate fresh water flow from the Brahmani river basin and the Kharasrota river keep the salinity level of the water along the shore down.

The brackish water becomes ideal for the mangroves to grow and stay healthy.

20) Election Commission :-
The Election Commission of India is a permanent, independent and constitutional body to ensure free and fair elections in the country. Elections are held regularly at all 3 tiers of political structure- Union, States and Local bodies
.

The Election Commission was established in accordance with the Constitution on 25th January, 1950. The elections are governed by Part XV from Articles 324 to 329. Besides, the Representation of People Act, 1950 governs the provisions related to the preparation of electoral rolls and voter registration. RPA 1951 and Delimitation Commission 1952. Also govern the elections.

Under Article 324(1), the super intendence, direction and control of the preparation of the electoral rolls for and the conduct of, all elections to Parliament and to State Legislature and of elections to the offices of President and Vice-President shall be vested in the Election Commission of India.

The elections to Panchayats and Municipalities are vested in the State Election Commission as given in Article 243K and 243ZA respectively.

Under Article 324(2) The election commission shall consist of the chief election commission and such number of other election commission if any, as the president may from time to time fix and the appointment of the chief election commissioners and other election commissioners shall, subject to the provisions of any law made in that behalf of parliament, be made by the president.

The President may also appoint after consultation with the Election Commission such Regional Commissioners as he/she may consider necessary to assist the Election Commission in the performance of its functions.

21) ‘28% of 138,000 assessed species face extinction’ :-

Some 28% of the 1,38,374 species assessed by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) for its survival watchlist are now at high risk of vanishing forever, the global conservation body said on Saturday.

Habitat loss, overexploitation and illegal trade have hammered global wildlife populations for decades, and climate change is now kicking in as a direct threat as well, the IUCN reported.

Trapped on island habitats made smaller by rising seas, Indonesia’s fearsome Komodo dragons were listed as “endangered”. The species “is increasingly threatened by the impacts of climate change” said the the IUCN, with rising sea levels expected to shrink its tiny habitat by at least 30% over the next 45 years.

Some 37% of the 1,200 shark and ray species assessed by experts are directly threatened by extinction, a third more than only seven years ago.

22) Mycorrhiza is a non-disease-producing association in which the fungus invades the root to absorb nutrients. Mycorrhizal fungi establish a mild form of parasitism that is mutualistic, meaning both the plant and the fungus benefit from the association.

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