Graded Response Action Plan

Context Starting October 15, some stricter measures to fight air pollution will come into force in Delhi’s neighbourhood, as part of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP). The action plan has already been in effect for two years in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR). What is new in Read More …

What does ‘no dengue deaths’ really mean?

Context Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tweeted the “stunning results” of his government’s campaign to get people to invest 10 minutes every week to stop dengue mosquitoes from breeding: “The number of cases in Delhi so far is just 356, compared to 650 by this time last year”, he posted; “most importantly, we have Read More …

National Monsoon Mission & Coupled Forecast Model (CFS)

Context The new monsoon model, called the Coupled Forecast Model (CFS), deployed by the IMD under the National Monsoon Mission (NMM) has failed to forecast the excess rainfall received during August-September 2019. About National Monsoon Mission Under the National Monsoon Mission initiative, the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune, Read More …

Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989

Context Supreme Court recalled its directions in a March 20, 2018 verdict that had effectively diluted provisions of arrest under the Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. This was following a plea by the Centre seeking a review of that judgment. Background Since crimes against SCs and STs Read More …

Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act (FRBM)

Context States’ gross fiscal deficit (GFD) has remained within the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act (FRBM) threshold of 3% of gross domestic product (GDP) during 2017-18 and 2018-19, a Reserve Bank of India report on State Finances said. About FRBM Act Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act enacted Read More …

Palaeochannels

Context The Union Water Ministry has excavated an old, dried-up river in Prayagraj (formerly Allahabad) that linked the Ganga and Yamuna rivers. The aim is to develop it as a potential groundwater recharge source, according to officials at the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), a body under the Union Read More …

School Education Quality Index

Context There are huge differences in the quality of school education across the country, according to a Niti Aayog ranking released on Monday. Among 20 large States, Kerala was the best performer with a score of 76.6%, while Uttar Pradesh came in last with a score of 36.4%. About the Read More …

What does ancient DNA show about history?

Context The journal Cell published a paper, An Ancient Harappan Genome Lacks Ancestry from Steppe Pastoralists and Iranian Farmers, which claimed that the inhabitants of the Indus Valley Civilisation lacked the steppe-pastoralist ancestry which had brought Indo-European languages into South Asia. The findings of the paper, whose key authors are the archaeologist Read More …

What corporate tax cut means for the Indian economy?

Context In its boldest gambit yet to stir up the economy, the government on Friday issued an ordinance to reduce the corporate tax rate for domestic firms and new manufacturing units by 10 to 12 percentage points, effectively bringing India’s tax rates on par with its competing Asian peers. Finance Read More …

Why has India banned e-cigarettes?

Context The Union Cabinet approved the promulgation of the Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes (production, manufacture, import, export, transport, sale, distribution, storage and advertisement) Ordinance, 2019 with immediate effect. As a result, anyone violating it will be imprisoned for up to one year or fined up to ₹1,00,000 or both for Read More …