16th August 2021 Daily Current Affairs

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Which of the following site(s) has been recently included in the Ramsar Convention as Wetlands of International Importance?

  1. Wadhvana Wetland
  2. Sultanpur National Park
  3. Thane Creek Flamingo Sanctuary

Select the correct answer using the codes given below:

a.  1 only

b.  1 and 2 only

c.  2 and 3 only

d.  1, 2 and 3

2)With respect to the Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty Seventh Amendment) Bill, 2021, consider the following statements:

The Bill empowers the states and union territories to prepare their own list of socially and educationally backward classes.

This list must be made by law, and may differ from the central list.

Which of the given statements above is/are correct?

a.  1 only

b.  2 only

c.  Both 1 and 2

d.  Neither 1 nor 2

3)Operation Blue Freedom, sometimes seen in the news recently, is associated with?

a.  India’s scientific expedition program to Antarctica under the Mission Sakthi

b.  An expedition exercise till Siachen Glacier by People with disabilities from across the country

c.  A campaign launched by the Ministry of Environment to attain blue flag tag for India’s beaches

d.  An exercise launched by the Ministry of Fisheries to eliminate ghostnets and bottom trawling fishing

The newly added sites are:

Wadhwana Wetland (Gujarat)

Thol Lake Wildlife Sanctuary (Gujarat)

Sultanpur National Park (Haryana)

Bhindawas Wildlife Sanctuary (Haryana)

Prelims Specific News Items

  1. Bihar plans GPS trackers for endangered Greater Adjutant Storks :- In a first, Bihar has decided to tag endangered greater adjutant storks (Leptoptilos dubius), locally known as ‘Garuda’, with GPS trackers to monitor their movement as a part of efforts to conserve them.

Bhagalpur’s Kadwa Diara floodplains area is the third-most popular breeding centre for the greater adjutant stork in the world after Assam and Cambodia. Conservation efforts in these areas have led to increase in their population in recent years.

The greater adjutant is one of the most threatened stork species of the world and is widely considered to be a rare bird

The global population of the Greater Adjutant Stork is estimated to be roughly not more than 1,500 now.

Conservation status:

IUCN Red list: EN (Endangered)

Indian Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972: Schedule IV

There are only three known breeding grounds – one in Cambodia, two in India, in Assam and in Kadwa Diara of Bihar.

Cultural significance: The Garuda is the considered the mount of Vishnu, one of Hinduism’s prime deities. 

2)Miyawaki method:

It is a method pioneered by Japanese Botanist Akira Miyawaki. Miyawaki is a technique pioneered by Japanese botanist Akira Miyawaki that helps build dense, native forests. The approach is supposed to ensure that plant growth is 10 times faster and the resulting plantation is 30 times denser than usual.

3)MoHUA launches one brand -‘SonChiraiya’ – for Urban SHG products :- The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has launched ‘SonChiraiya’.

About SonChiraiya:

SonChiraiya is a brand and logo for the marketing of urban Self-Help Group (SHG) products. 

This will help in improving visibility and global access for the products made by urban SHG women.

Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Urban Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NULM) has focussed on equipping the urban poor women with adequate skills and opportunities and enabling them to promote sustainable micro-enterprises.

4)Whale Shark:

Whale Shark(Rhincodon typus) is the largest known extant fish species.

Features: Whale Sharks are a ‘filter feeder shark’ which means it does not eat meat like other sharks. They filter seawater and feed on tiny planktons.

Habitat: The whale shark is found in open waters of the tropical oceans and is rarely found in water below 21 °C (70 °F). In India, they are mostly found in the Gulf of Mannar and Gujarat coast.

Conservation Status:

IUCN Red List: Endangered

CITES: Appendix II

Indian Wildlife Protection Act, 1972: Schedule I 


Oil & gas drilling, shipping lanes 

Accidental entanglement in fishing nets 

Developed by: National Institute of Animal Biotechnology (NAIB), Hyderabad, an autonomous institution under the aegis of the Department of Biotechnology.

5) IndiGau is India’s first Cattle Genomic Chip for the conservation of pure varieties of indigenous cattle breeds like Gir, Kankrej, Sahiwal, Ongole etc.

6) Trekking the highest battlefield in the world :-

Where there’s a will there’s a way. A team of people with disabilities on Independence Day embarked upon a journey to trek the Siachen Glacier. They will attempt a world record for the largest group of people with disabilities to scale the highest battlefield in the world.

Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Virendra Kumar flagged off the expedition, which is being executed by ‘Team CLAW’, a group of armed forces veterans working towards empowering people with disabilities

This is the land world record expedition part of ‘Operation Blue Freedom Triple World Records’ being undertaken, CLAW Global said. Those selected will undergo all the three stages of acclimatisation and training at Leh (Stage 1), Siachen base camp (Stage 2) and North Pullu (Stage 3) after which the final expedition team would be selected.

7)Method to determine Tea Quality in Assam :-= The 110 year old Tocklai Tea Research Institute in eastern Assam’s Jorhat had in the 1950s developed the ballometric method for separating fine tea leaves from the coarse ones to ensure quality.

Every 100 grams of tea leaves is then separated into fine and coarse leaves.

8)Explained: PM Gati Shakti Master Plan that Modi announced on Independence Day :-

What is Gati Shakti Master Plan?

In his speech, PM Modi pegged the project as a source of employment opportunities for the youth in future.

“In the coming days, we will launch PM Gati Shakti Plan, a 100 lakh crore national infrastructure master plan which will make a foundation for holistic infrastructure and give an integrated pathway to our economy,” 

What are the focus areas of the project?

PM Modi said that the Gati Shakti plan will help raise the global profile of local manufacturers and help them compete with their counterparts worldwide. It also raises possibilities of new future economic zones.

The prime minister also said that India needs to increase both manufacturing and exports. Every product that is sold globally from India is attached to India, which is why I am saying that every product of yours is a brand ambassador for India, he said.

More details and the launch date of the project are awaited. Other significant announcements include the launch of the National Hydrogen Mission and the opening up Sainik Schools for girls.

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