- The architectural heritage of Orchha have been included in UNESCO’s tentative list of world heritage sites following a proposal sent by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to the U.N. body.
- Orchha is a town in Madhya Pradesh which depict peculiar style of the Bundela dynasty.
- Orchha is situated on the banks of the Betwa River, it was built by King Rudra Pratap Singh of Bundela dynasty in the 16th century.
- The ancient town is famous for its Chaturbhuj Temple, Orchha fort complex, Raja Mahal among others.
- Orchha is also famous for its two elevated minaret called Saavan and Bhadon and its four palaces Jahangir Palace, Raj Mahal, Sheesh Mahal and Rai Praveen Mahal and for its concept of open bungalows, stone work windows, animal statues depicting the culture of Bundelkhand.
- It is the only place in India where Lord Ram is worshipped as a king with a dedicated temple in his name called Sri Ram Raja Mandir.
Similipal Biosphere Reserve
- A new vine snake named, Ahaetulla laudankia was discovered in Odisha’s Similipal biosphere reserve.
- Similipal National Park is a national park and a tiger reserve in the Mayurbhanj district in the Indian state of Odisha.
- It is part of the Similipal-Kuldiha-Hadgarh Elephant Reserve popularly known as Mayurbhanj Elephant Reserve.
- Simlipal National Park derives its name from the abundance of semul (red silk cotton trees) that bloom here.
- This reserve is part of the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves since 2009.
- The Javan Rhino is the rarest of the rhino species with 63-67 animals surviving only in Indonesia.
- Javan rhinos are now found only in Indonesia’s Ujung Kulon National Park.
- The population appears to have stabilized because they are guarded by Rhino Protection Units.
- Both African species and the Sumatran rhinoceros have two horns, while the Indian and Javan rhinoceros have a single horn.
International Classification of Diseases
- International Classification of Diseases (ICD) is a classification system by WHO that is used to classify and monitor causes of injury and death and maintains information for health analyses, such as the study of mortality (death) and morbidity (illness) trends.
- The ICD is designed to promote international compatibility in health data collecting and reporting.
- It is right now the foundation for the identification of health trends and statistics globally, contains around 55,000 unique codes for injuries, diseases and causes of death.
- It is the international standard for reporting diseases and health conditions.
- The ICD contains a description of all known diseases and injuries.
- Each disease is detailed with diagnostic characteristics and given a unique identifier that is used to code mortality data on death certificates and morbidity data from patient and clinical records.
Price Deficiency Payment Scheme (PDPS)
- The scheme has been formulated on the lines of Madhya Pradesh government’s Bhawantar Bhugtan Yojana (BBY).
- It promises to hedge price risks wherein farmers will be compensated for distress sale at prices below MSP.
- This scheme proposes to cover all oilseeds for which MSP is notified.
- Under this, the direct payment of the difference between MSP and the modal price of market will be made to farmers.
- This scheme does not involve any physical procurement of crops by the State agencies as farmers are paid the difference between MSP and modal price on disposal in the notified market.
- PDPS will create a win-win situation for both farmers and the government.
- While assuring MSP for farmers, it will reduce the accumulation of unwanted food grains and oilseeds stocks and the fiscal costs of procurement and storage will also reduce significantly.
- Joint Oceanographic Institutions for Deep Earth Sampling (JOIDES) Resolution (JR) is one of the scientific drilling ships used by the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP), an international, multi-drilling platform research program.
- The ship, the JOIDES Resolution, is specifically built for ocean science and is equipped with a drill that can extract cores of rock over a mile long from up to three miles beneath the seafloor is used for the discovery.
- The JOIDES Resolution Science Operator (JRSO) is funded through a cooperative agreement with the US National Science Foundation (NSF), with international contributions from 23 Program member countries.
- Recently scientists from the ship have discovered the remnants of seawater dating back to the Ice Age, tucked inside rock formations in the middle of the Indian Ocean.
- The Laxmi Basin is a 300-kilometre-wide, marginal depression enclosed by the Indian continental shelf and the Laxmi Ridge on either side.
- The basin is believed to be formed by the extension of the Indian continental tectonic plate, while another theory held that the surface of the basin composed of an oceanic crust overlying an extinct spreading center formed due to drifting of two tectonic plates.
- Recently IODP scientists have concluded that a short-lived subduction event had occurred around 70 million years ago in Laxmi Basin.
- The finding provides glimpse of a convergent plate motion in the area which is otherwise dominated by divergent tectonics that had led to the breakup of super continent Gondwanaland into three parts: Madagascar, Seychelles, and India.
- The finding will help to determine precisely how the Indian plate moved away from Madagascar and Seychelles just prior to the Deccan volcanism.
Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO)
- MJO is an eastward moving disturbance of clouds, rainfall, winds, and pressure that traverses the planet in the tropics and returns to its initial starting point in 30 to 60 days, on average.
- This atmospheric disturbance is distinct from ENSO, which once established, is associated with persistent features that last several seasons or longer over the Pacific Ocean basin.
- There can be multiple MJO events within a season, it can be described as intra-seasonal tropical climate variability (i.e. varies on a week-to-week basis).
- The MJO consists of two parts, or phases: one is the enhanced rainfall (or convective) phase and the other is the suppressed rainfall phase.
- The MJO can produce impacts similar to those of ENSO, but which appear only in weekly averages before changing, rather than persisting and therefore appearing in seasonal averages as is the case for ENSO.
- The band of lower pressure in the MJO wave sets up storms/depressions and underwrites monsoon onsets as it travels east.
- According to Indian Meteorological Department MJO delays onset South- West monsoon in India.
- Orangutans are not native to India, recently India’s only orangutan which was brought from Singapore was died in Nanda Kannan Zoo, Odisha.
- Orangutans are not migratory animals and stay rooted in their area, they suffer more due to deforestation.
- Orangutans, with distinctive red fur, are the largest arboreal mammal, spending most of their time in trees.
- According to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), there are three species of orangutans — Bornean, Sumatran and Tapanuli.
- Identified as the third species of orangutan in November 2017 is the Tapanuli orangutan.
- All three kinds of orangutans are listed as “Critically Endangered” by the United Nations-affiliated International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary
- Pobitora is a wildlife reserve in the Morigaon district of the state of Assam and is located near to River Brahmaputra.
- It has a dense population of the Great Indian one-horned rhinoceros and has the highest density of rhinos in the world.