Facts Corner-Part-67

Reporters Without Borders

  • It is an international non-profit, non-governmental organization that promotes and defends freedom of information and freedom of the press.
  • The organization, with its head office in Paris, France, has consultant status at the United Nations.

What are H-4 Visa and H1-B visa?

  • H-4 visa is a work permit issued to the spouses of H1-B visa holders. In 2015 Obama administration allowed work permits for spouses who otherwise could not be employed without waiting for their spouses to receive permanent resident status.
  • The H1-B Visa, meanwhile, is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to hire foreign workers on a temporary basis in speciality occupations such as Science and Information Technology.

Zonal Council

  • Zonal Councils are advisory councils and are made up of the states of India that have been grouped into five zones to foster cooperation among them.
  • Five Zonal Councils were set up under Part-III of the States Reorganisation Act, 1956.
  • The special problems of the North Eastern States’ are addressed by another statutory body – The North-Eastern Council, created by the North Eastern Council Act, 1971.
  • Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep are not members of any of the Zonal Councils. However, they are presently special invitees to the Southern Zonal Council.
  • The Union Home Minister is the Chairman of each of these Councils.
Zonal Council States/ UT’s included in Zonal Council
Northern Zonal Council Chandigarh, Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, and Rajasthan
North-Eastern Zonal Council Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Sikkim
Central Zonal Council Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh
Eastern Zonal Council Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, and West Bengal
Western Zonal Council Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Goa, Gujarat, and Maharashtra
Southern Zonal Council Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Lakshadweep, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu, and Telangana


  • Scientists have discovered a ‘pitch black’ planet 470 light-years away that absorbs 99% of light.
  • This is one of the darkest planets ever discovered — reflecting very little light from its host star.
  • The planet, named WASP-104b, was discovered by using NASA’s Kepler telescope to show that it is ‘darker than charcoal.’
  • The planet was discovered orbiting a yellow dwarf star some 470 light-years away from earth in the constellation Leo.
  • It is categorized as a ‘hot Jupiter’ planet, denoting gas giant planets of a similar mass to Jupiter, but is located much closer to their host stars – making them very hot.

Unnat Bharat Abhiyan 2.0

  • Human Resource Development Ministry launched Unnat Bharat Abhiyan 2.0 in New Delhi.
  • Under this Mission, students from colleges and universities will go to nearby villages to get acquainted with the life of the village people and the problems faced by them in day to day life.
  • Under the Unnat Bharat Abhiyan 2.0, the institutions have been selected on a Challenge Mode and the scheme has been extended to 750 reputed Higher Educational Institutes (both public and private) of the country.
  • IIT Delhi has been designated to function as the National Coordinating Institute for this programme and the Ministry intends to extend the coverage to all the reputed Higher Educational Institutes, in a phased manner.
  • Each selected institute would adopt a cluster of villages / panchayats and gradually expand the outreach over a period of time.

5th/6th Schedule in Indian Constitution

  • Fifth Schedule- contains provisions as to the Administration and Control of Scheduled Areas and Scheduled Tribes.
  • Sixth Schedule- contains provisions as to the Administration of Tribal Areas in the States of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram.


  • Bangladesh is all set to become a member of the exclusive club of satellite-owning countries as its first commercial satellite “Bangabandhu-1” will likely be flying to space on May 7.
  • The satellite will be launched from Florida’s Cape Canaveral (USA).

Bhabha Kavach

  • Bhabha Kavach is an armour panel, which gives personal protection against bullets, of different threat levels.
  • It is developed by Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC).
  • The jacket was developed at BARC’s Trombay centre in response to a request from the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the Ministry of Home Affairs.
  • It was named after nuclear physicist Dr. Homi J. Bhabha.
  • It is not only cheaper but also much lighter.
  • It is made of boron carbide and carbon nanotube polymer composite.
  • BARC has been using boron carbide in the control rods of its nuclear reactors.
  • It weighs just 6.6 kg in comparison to the 17-kg jackets in use, and use of boron carbide for jacket is the first in India.

GI Tag status given in 2017 & 2018

The products which have received the GI tag in 2017 include- 
(1) Pochampally Ikat of Telangana
(2) Gobindobhog rice of West Bengal
(3) Durgi stone carvings of Andhra Pradesh
(4) Etikoppaka toys of Andhra Pradesh
(5) Chakshesang shawl of Nagaland

(6) Banaganapalle mangoes of Andhra Pradesh
(7) Tulaipanji rice of West Bengal

(8) Banglar Rasogolla of West Bengal

In 2018

  • Araku coffee (Andhra Pradesh)
  • Kadaknath Chicken (Madhya Pradesh)
  • Adilabad Dokra (Telangana)
  • Warangal Durries (Telangana)


  • The Indian and Malaysian armies will hold a two-week military exercise beginning April 30 in Malaysia as part of efforts to bolster defence cooperation.
  • The joint exercise ‘Harimau Shakti’ will take place in the dense forests of Sengai Perdik in Hulu Langat district of Malaysia.

Air Quality Index

  • AQI is a number used to communicate to the public how polluted the air currently is or how polluted it is forecast to become.
  • Different countries have their own air quality indexes, corresponding to different national air quality standards.
  • There are six AQI categories, namely Good, Satisfactory, Moderately polluted, Poor, Very Poor, and Severe.
  • Each of these categories is decided based on ambient concentration values of air pollutants and their likely health impacts (known as health breakpoints).
  • AQ sub-index and health breakpoints are evolved for eight pollutants (PM10, PM2.5, NO2, SO2, CO, O3, NH3, and Pb).

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