- Arikamedu is the ancient Roman trade centre.
- It is situated in the south of Puducherry on the right bank of Ariyankuppam River.
- The port town was inhabited by Romans, Cholas and French.
- The exports must have included textile, beads, semiprecious gems, glass and shell bangles as wastage at the manufacturing site suggests.
- The Romans must have used the Red Sea to come to India as traces of beads have been found in Alexandria and other Red Sea ports.
IFSC Authority Bill, 2019
- The Authority shall consist of a Chairperson, one Member each to be nominated by the RBI, the Securities Exchange Board of India SEBI, the IRDAI and the PFRDA.
- Two members are to be dominated by the Central Government and two other whole-time or full-time or part-time members.
- The Authority shall regulate all such financial services, financial products and FIs in an IFSC which has already been permitted by the Financial Sector Regulators for IFSCs.
- The Authority shall also regulate such other financial products, financial services or FIs as may be notified by the Central Government from time to time.
- It may also recommend to the Central Government such other financial products, financial services and financial institutions which may be permitted in the IFSCs.
- All powers exercisable by the respective financial sector regulatory (viz. RBI, SEBI, IRDAI, and PFRDA etc.) under the respective Acts shall be solely exercised by the Authority in the IFSCs.
- This is so far as the regulation of financial products, financial services and FIs that are permitted in the IFSC are concerned.
- The Central Govt. may, after due appropriation made by Parliament by law in this behalf, make to the Authority grants of such sums of money as the Central Government may think fit for being utilized for the purposes of the Authority.
- The transactions of financial services in the IFSCs shall be done in the foreign currency as specified by the Authority in consultation with the Central Govt.
Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog
- The commission will work in collaboration with other government institutions working on research in the fields such as breeding and rearing of cows, organic manure and biogas.
- The commission will be tasked with providing a framework for cow conservation and development programmes.
- The setting up of Aayog will lead to conservation, protection and development of cattle population in the country including development and conservation of indigenous breeds.
- It will result in increased growth of livestock sector which is more inclusive, benefitting women, and small and marginal farmers.
World LPG Association
- Based out of Paris, the WLPGA is the voice of the global LPG Industry representing the full LPG value chain.
- The Association was established in 1987 and granted Special Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council in 1989.
- The primary goal of the Association is to add value to the sector by driving premium demand for LPG, while also promoting Compliance to good business and safety practices.
- The WLPGA brings together over 200 private and public companies operating in more than 125 countries involved in one, several or all activities of the industry.
- It develops long-term partnerships with international organisations; and implements projects on local and global scales.
National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH)
- The NFCH is an autonomous organization under the administrative control of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
- The main objective of the Foundation is to provide assistance to the children, youth rendered orphan and destitute in communal, caste, ethnic or terrorist violence for their rehabilitation.
- It also promotes communal harmony and national integration through various activities.
- The NFCH conducts different activities for the promotion of communal harmony and strengthening of national integration.
- The Foundation under Extension Activities viz. Reach, Interfaith Interaction, Partnership and Cause Partnership takes up various activities, either independently or through State Governments/ Administrations, NGOs, educational and other institutions etc. with a view to promote communal harmony and National integration.
Price monitoring and research unit (PMRU)
- Kerala has become the first State to set up a price monitoring and research unit (PMRU).
- It is to track violation of prices of essential drugs and medical devices under the Drugs Price Control Order (DPCO).
- The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) had proposed such a system for the States and the Union Territories five years ago.
- The State Health Secretary would be the Chairman of the society and the Drugs Controller would be its member secretary.
- Its members include a State government representative, representatives of private pharmaceutical companies, and those from consumer rights protection forum.
- The society would also have an executive committee headed by the Drugs Controller.
- Some 200 km from Leh are the villages of Dha, Hanu, Garkone and Darchik on both sides of the Indus River, inhabited by the Buddhist Dard Tribes.
- The villages are together called the “Aryan valley”.
- The community now numbers about 4,000.
- The word ‘Dard’ is derived from a Sanskrit word, ‘Daradas’, which means people who live on hillsides.
- People of this region are culturally and linguistically different from those in other parts of Ladakh.
- There is a line of thought that the “Aryans of Ladakh” or the “Brokpas” might have descended from soldiers in Alexander’s army who had come to the region over 2,000 years ago.
- They rear goat and sheep for milk and meat, and their festivals are based on the solar calendar.
- Their traditions go back 5,000 years; those who still follow the original customs worship trees, rivers and mountains.
- These tribals are mainly dependent on agriculture; the apricots grown here are considered among the best in the world and there are 12 varieties of grapes in the region.
- Grape-wine is very popular in the “Aryan valley”.
Central Ground Water Board (CGWB)
- CGWB has been entrusted with the responsibilities of developing & disseminating technologies, monitoring national policies for the scientific and sustainable development and management of India’s ground water resources.
- It periodically takes up various studies which include ground water management studies, exploratory drilling programmes, monitoring ground water level and water quality through a network of ground water observation wells etc.
- The result collected is shared with the concerned States for taking up suitable ground water specific interventions.
National Aquifer Mapping and Management Programme (NAQUIM)
- The NAQUIM is an initiative of the Ministry of Water Resources for mapping and managing the entire aquifer systems in the country.
- It maintains the Hydrological Map of India.
- It aims:
- to identify and map aquifers at the micro level,
- to quantify the available groundwater resources, and
- to propose plans appropriate to the scale of demand and aquifer characteristics, and institutional arrangements for participatory management.
- It was initiated as a part of the Ground Water Management and Regulation scheme to delineate and characterize the aquifers to develop plans for ground water management.
- The AQUIM project is implemented in six selected areas in different hydrogeological environs of the country.
Income Tax Ombudsman
- It is an Independent body comprises of former tax officials or Indian Revenue Service Officials formed by the Government, empowered to address and settle tax payer’s grievances.
- The Ombudsman is governed by, and has to comply with the Income Tax Ombudsman Guidelines, 2006.
- At present, the Government has set-up Tax Ombudsman at 12 cities namely New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Kanpur, Chandigarh, Pune, Kochi, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Bhopal.
- The population of Sentinelese tribe is estimated to be 50 as per 2011 census.
- The Sentinelese are an uncontacted tribe living on North Sentinel Island, one of the Andaman Islands in the Indian Ocean.
- The Sentinelese are still in isolation practicing primordial hunting and gathering way of life.
- The tribe is an Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group (PVTG).
National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (NMDFC)
- The National Minorities Development & Finance Corporation (NMDFC) was incorporated as a company not for profit.
- It is a National Level Apex Body for the benefit of Minorities as defined under the National Commission for Minorities Act 1992.
- The prime mandate of NMDFC is to provide concessional finance to the Minorities for self-employment/ income generation activities.
- The notified Minorities in India are Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists & Parsis and Jain.
- Under NMDFC program, preference is given to Artisans & Women.