Facts Corner-Part-52

Indus Water Treaty

  • The Indus Waters Treaty is a water-distribution treaty between India and Pakistan, brokered by the World Bank.
  • The treaty was signed in Karachi on September 19, 1960 by then Prime Minister of India Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and then President of Pakistan Ayub Khan.

Agreements under Indus Water Treaty (IWT)

  • Control over the water flowing in three “eastern” rivers of India was given to India. These rivers are- 
    (a) The Beas 
    (b) The Ravi 
    (c) The Sutlej
  • Control over the water flowing in three “western” rivers of India was given to Pakistan-
    (a) The Indus
    (b) The Chenab
    (c) The Jhelum
  • India can use only 20% of the total water carried by the Indus.

“Housing for All” In Rural Areas-

  • Under the scheme the Government proposes to provide an environmentally safe and secure pucca house to every rural household by 2022.
  • It is named as the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Gramin)- PMAY-G.
  • Interest subvention (subsidy) is a crucial component of the scheme – This will be implemented by National Housing Bank


  • Interest subvention (subsidy) is a crucial component of the scheme.
  • Under the new scheme of housing for all 2022, the central assistance per house for EWS (Economically weaker section) has been planned to increase to 1.5 lakh rupees from 70,000 rupees.

‘Power for all’ (SAUBHAGYA) scheme

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched ‘Power for all’ scheme to mark the birth anniversary of Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya on September 25, 2017.
  • The scheme is named as ‘Saubhagya’ and provide subsidy on equipment like transformers, meters and wires.
  • The scheme also promises on-the-spot registration of applicants.
  • Rural Electrification Corporation Limited (REC) is the nodal agency for coordinating the implementation of the scheme.
  • The prospective beneficiary households for free electricity connections under the scheme identify using Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC), 2011 data.

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY)

  • It is the flagship scheme of the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE).
  • The objective of this Skill Certification Scheme is to enable a large number of Indian youth to take up industry-relevant skill training that will help them in securing a better livelihood.

National Skill Development Mission (Skill India Mission)

  • The National Skill Development Mission was launched by Prime Minister on 15 July 2015 on the occasion of World Youth Skills Day.
  • Key institutional mechanisms for achieving the objectives of the Mission have been divided into three tiers-
    (a) Governing Council for policy guidance at apex level
    (b) A Steering Committee and 
    (c) A Mission Directorate (along with an Executive Committee) as the executive arm of the Mission.
  • Mission Directorate will be supported by three other institutions: National Skill Development Agency (NSDA), National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), and Directorate General of Training (DGT).

Coral reefs-

  • The Corals are marine invertebrates in the class Anthozoa of phylum Cnidaria.
  • They typically live in compact colonies of many identical individual polyps.
  • The Coral reefs are built by and made up of thousands of tiny animals—coral “polyps”—that are related to anemones and jellyfish.

Coral bleaching-

  • The Coral bleaching occurs when coral polyps expel algae that live in their tissues.
  • Normally, coral polyps live in an endosymbiotic relationship with the algae and that relationship is crucial for the coral and hence for the health of the whole reef.
  • Bleached corals continue to live. But as the algae provide the coral with 90% of its energy, after expelling the algae the coral begins to starve.
  • Above-average sea water temperatures caused by global warming have been identified as a leading cause of coral bleaching worldwide.

Great Barrier Reef

  • The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system composed of over 2,900 individual reefs.
  • The reef is located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, Australia.

Rice blast

  • Rice blast threatens global food security, destroying enough rice each year to feed 60 million people.
  • It spreads within rice plants by invasive hyphae (branching filaments) which break through from cell to cell.
  • In their bid to understand this process, the researchers used chemical genetics to mutate a signalling protein to make it susceptible to a specific drug.
  • The protein, PMK1, is responsible for suppressing the rice’s immunity and allowing the fungus to squeeze through pit fields – so, by inhibiting it, the researchers were able to trap the fungus within a cell.
  • This level of precision led the team to discover that just one enzyme, called a MAP kinase, was responsible for regulating the invasive growth of rice blast.
  • The research team hopes this discovery will enable them to identify targets of this enzyme and thereby determine the molecular basis of this devastating disease.


  • India hosts nine vulture species, five of them the highly endangered Gyps species.
  • Assam is home to six, including winter visitors from the Himalayas — the Himalayan and Eurasian griffons.
  • BNHS and other organisations found in the 1990s that the Gyps populations in India and Nepal declined from about 40 million by 99.9% in just two decades.
  • Vultures take time to mature, pair for life, breed once a year, and live up to 70 years – making captive breeding efforts a challenge, and their decline serious.

Anamox (Anaerobic ammonia oxidising) bacteria:

  • A novel species of a bacterium that produces antibiotic has been discovered by a professor in the University of Hyderabad (UoH) and his researchers.
  • Found in the Buffalo Lake on the UoH campus, the newly discovered bacterium, Planctopirus hydrillae, may provide a solution to the problem of diseases becoming resistant to a majority of known drugs.
  • The new bacteria would also clean up ammonia waste, a growing environmental concern.
  • In this scenario, the discovery of antibiotic- producing Planctomycete may help in the development of a new drug. The bacterium was isolated from aquatic plant Hydrilla.
  • The new species reported by the researchers is a very uncommon bacterium belonging to the phylum Planctomycetes and was isolated from the university campus.
  • This is the first report of an antibiotic producing bacterium from the phylum Planctomycetes. Cultivating the bacteria of this phylum is extremely difficult. And we are the first group from India to develop the art of cultivating these bacteria which are very useful even for environmental issues particularly for the treatment of ammonia waste.
  • The bacteria are called as “Anamox (Anaerobic ammonia oxidising) bacteria.

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