Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam
Video lectures for ESE prelims 2020
- National and International Issues on
- Economic Development
- Social Development
- Industrial Development
- Energy and Environment
- Information and Communication Technology
- General Knowledge
- Government Initiatives
Topic 1:Industrial development
GI Certification for five varieties of Indian coffee
The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India has recently awarded Geographical Indication (GI) to five varieties of Indian coffee.
1. Coorg Arabica coffee
- It is grown specifically in the region of Kodagu district in Karnataka.
2. Wayanaad Robusta coffee
- It is grown specifically in the region of Wayanad district which is situated on the eastern portion of Kerala.
3. Chikmagalur Arabica coffee
- It is grown specifically in the region of Chikmagalur district and it is situated in the Deccan plateau, belongs to the Malnad region of Karnataka.
4. Araku Valley Arabica coffee
- It can be described as coffee from the hilly tracks of Visakhapatnam district of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha region at an elevation of 900-1100 Mt MSL.
- The coffee produce of Araku, by the tribals, follows an organic approach in which they emphasise management practices involving substantial use of organic manures, green manuring and organic pest management practices.
5.Bababudangiris Arabica coffee
- It is grown specifically in the birthplace of coffee in India and the region is situated in the central portion of Chikmagalur district.
- Selectively hand-picked and processed by natural fermentation, the cup exhibits full body, acidity, mild flavour and striking aroma with a note of chocolate.
- This coffee is also called high grown coffee which slowly ripens in the mild climate and thereby the bean acquires a special taste and aroma.
About Coffee in India:
- India is the only country in the world where the entire coffee cultivation is grown under shade, hand-picked and sun dried.
- India produces some of the best coffee in the world, grown by tribal farmers in the Western and Eastern Ghats,which are the two major bio-diversity hotspots in the world.
- Indian coffeeis highly valued in the world market and sold as premium coffee in Europe.
- In India, coffee is cultivated in about 4.54 lakh hectares by 3.66 lakh coffee farmers of which 98% are small farmers. Coffee cultivation is mainly done in the Southern States of India:
- Karnataka – 54%
- Kerala – 19%
- Tamil Nadu – 8%
- Coffee is also grown in non-traditional areas like Andhra Pradesh and Odisha (17.2%) and North East States (1.8%).
Read more at: The Hindu
Topic 2 : Environment
The bio-digester technology developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will be a game changer in the sanitation sector in the years to come.
What is Bio-Digester technology?
- The bio-digester consists of a bio-toilet attached with bio-digester tanks that converts human faeces into biogas and reusable water.
- It uses anaerobic microbial inoculum (a material used for inoculation) to convert faeces into biogas and water that can be used for agriculture and gardening purposes.
- The tanks can be customised based on the requirements of the local conditions, and can operate in temperatures ranging from minus (-) 20 degrees to 50 degrees.
- The bio-digester tanks are maintenance-free for the lifetime, as the anaerobic microbial inoculum is fed only once. It feeds on the faecal matter and multiplies by itself.
- The technology is now being used in the Indian Railways and by the armed forces.
Significance of the technology:
- The technology can be used in independent houses, apartment blocks, schools and other educational institutions and hostels.
- The bio-digester tanks are maintenance-free for the lifetime as the anaerobic microbial inoculum is fed only once.
- Low installation costs.
Read more at: The Hindu
Topic 5: Government Initiatives
What is DigiLocker?
- Launched under Central government’s flagship ‘Digital India’ campaign, DigiLocker is a digital locker service that enables users to store their certain official documents on the cloud.
- Available for the Indian citizens, the cloud-based platform allows 1 GB of free space to store documents issued by government agencies and minimise the usage of physical documents. The users can easily upload and share the documents with any registered agency or department.
What are ‘issued documents’ and ‘uploaded documents’?
There are two types of official records that can be used in DigiLocker.
- Uploaded document: Citizens may upload scanned copies of their important documents including the driving license, voter’s ID card (EPIC), passport, marks sheets, income tax statements, etc. They can use the DigiLocker to submit a digitally signed copy to a government agency if required by that agency. However, the agency must be registered as a requester with the DigiLocker.
- Issued documents: These are e-documents that have been issued on the DigiLocker by a registered issuer who pushes the Uniform Resource Indicator (URI) of the e-documents to the digilockers of citizens, based on their Aadhaar numbers. These are stored in a central repository, and citizens can see and share their respective URI links.
Ujwal Bharat is a joint programme of the Ministry of Power, Coal and New & Renewable Energy. It is focused on illuminating the life of every Indian thus creating an Ujwal Bharat. The overall aim is to ensure 24X7 Power for all by 2019.
- Doubling Coal India’s production to 100 Cr tonnes/year by 2020
- 5 times increase in renewable capacity to 1,75,000 MW by 2022
- Power generation to increase by 50% by 2020
- Energy saving to increase to 10% of current consumption
Roles of Ministries
- The Ministry of Power is concerned with perspective planning, policy formulation, processing of projects for investment decision, monitoring of the implementation of power projects, training and manpower development and the administration and enactment of legislation in regard to thermal, hydro power generation, transmission and distribution.
- The Ministry of Coal has the overall responsibility of determining policies and strategies in respect of exploration and development of coal and lignite reserves, sanctioning of important projects of high value and for deciding all related issues.
- The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) is the nodal Ministry of the Government of India for all matters relating to new and renewable energy. The broad aim of the Ministry is to develop and deploy new and renewable energy for supplementing the energy requirements of the country.