Insights Daily Current Affairs, 09 September 2017

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Insights Daily Current Affairs, 09 September 2017


 

Paper 1:

 

Topic: Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

Army to induct women into military police soon to probe gender crimes

women-in-forces

The government has decided to recruit women jawans into the Army’s Corps of Military Police (CMP) for investigating gender specific crimes. The proposal is very significant as women will be inducted in the military’s non-officer cadre for the first time, although they will be in a non-combat role.

 

Key facts:

  • Women were required in the Corps of Military Police (CMP) to investigate gender-specific allegations and crime.
  • The women will be inducted as junior commissioned officers and jawans.

 

Background:

The armed forces account for around 3,500 women officers, all of whom are in non-combat roles. Women were allowed to join the military as officers outside the medical stream for the first time in 1992. In the navy, women are still not permitted to serve in submarines and warships, while the army bars them from front-line ground combat positions and tank units.

 

Way ahead:

Though this is good move, induction of women into the Army’s combat arms could still be a long way as the CMP is only a support arm. For women to progress on to roles of higher responsibility and hence equality, there need to be operational changes in the way the Army looks at its lady officers and at the same time bring out a mentality change.

Very few countries have allowed women in combat roles. The exceptions include Germany, Australia, Canada, the US, Britain, Denmark, Finland, France, Norway, Sweden and Israel.

 

About CMP:

Corps of Military Police (CMP) is the military police of the Indian Army. In addition, the CMP is trained to handle prisoners of war and to regulate traffic, as well as to handle basic telecommunication equipment such as telephone exchanges. They can be identified by their red berets, white lanyards and belts, and they also wear a black brassard with the letters MP imprinted in red.

The term ‘red berets’ is synonymous with the personnel of the elite corps of Military Police (CMP), since all ranks of this Corps adorn the exclusive red berets along with white belts to distinguish themselves from other Corps of Army.

Functions: The role of this Corps is primarily to assist Army formations in maintaining a high standard of discipline of its troops, prevent breaches of various rules and regulations and to assist in the preservation of high morale of all ranks of the formation.

 

Sources: the hindu.


 

Paper 2:

 

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

 

Government unveils rules to tackle on-board disruptive and unruly behaviour by passengers

tokyo

The Ministry of Civil Aviation has unveiled rules to tackle on-board disruptive and unruly behaviour by passengers. The DGCA has revised the relevant sections of the Civil Aviation Requirement to bring in a deterrent for passengers who engage in unruly behaviour on board aircrafts. The revision has been done in accordance with the provisions of Tokyo Convention 1963.

The focus has been on ensuring on board safety while maintaining an element of balance and safeguarding the interest of passengers, cabin crew and the airlines.

 

The new rules are as follows:

No- Fly list: The new rules will allow for the formation of a national, No Fly List of unruly passengers. The promulgation of the No – Fly List in India is unique and first-of-its-kind in the world. The concept of the No-Fly List is based on the concern for safety of passengers, crew and the aircraft, and not just on security threat.

Applicability: The revised CAR deals with unruly behavior of passenger on-board aircrafts. Unruly behavior of passengers at airport premises will be dealt with by relevant security agencies under applicable penal provisions. The revised CAR will be applicable for all Indian operators engaged in scheduled and non-scheduled air transport services, both domestic and international carriage of passengers. The CAR would also be applicable to foreign carriers subject to compliance of Tokyo Convention 1963.

What amounts to unruly behaviour? The revised CAR defines three categories of unruly behavior – Level 1 refers to behaviour that is verbally unruly, and calls for debarment upto 3 months; Level 2 indicates physical unruliness and can lead to the passenger being debarred from flying for upto 6 months and Level 3 indicates life-threatening behaviour where the debarment would be for a minimum of 2 years.

Internal committee: The complaint of unruly behavior would need to be filed by the pilot-in-command. These complaints will be probed by an internal committee to be set up by the airline. As per the CAR provisions, the internal committee will have to decide the matter within 30 days, and also specify the duration of ban on the unruly passenger. During the period of pendency of the enquiry the concerned airline may impose a ban on the said passenger. For every subsequent offence, the ban will be twice the period of previous ban.

Composition of the internal committee: The internal committee will have retired District & Sessions Judge as Chairman and representatives from a different scheduled airline, passengers’ association/consumer association/retired officer of Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum as Members.

Appeal: The revised CAR also contains appeal provisions against the ban. Aggrieved persons (other than those identified as security threat by MHA) may appeal within 60 days from the date of issue of order to the Appellate Committee constituted by MoCA comprising of retired Judge of a High Court of India as Chairman and representatives of passengers association/consumer association/retired officer of Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum and airlines as Members.

 

Background:

The Tokyo Convention, which took effect in 1969, governs criminal offenses and other acts committed on board aircraft that jeopardize the safety of flights.

 

Sources: pib.


 

Paper 3:

 

Topic: Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

Pluto mountains named after Tenzing Norgay, Edmund Hillary

tenzing norway

Two mountain ranges on Pluto have been named after Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary respectively by the International Astronomical Union, which for the first time, has officially approved the naming of 14 features on the icy dwarf planet. These are the first geological features on the planet to be named following the close flyby by the New Horizons spacecraft in July 2015.

 

Who are Tenzing Montes and Hillary Montes?

Tenzing Montes and Hillary Montes are mountain ranges honouring Tenzing Norgay (1914-1986) and Sir Edmund Hillary (1919-2008), the Indian/Nepali Sherpa and New Zealand mountaineer who were the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest and return safely.

 

Background:

NASA’s New Horizons team proposed the names to the IAU following the first reconnaissance of Pluto and its moons by the New Horizons spacecraft. The names pay homage to the underworld mythology, pioneering space missions, historic pioneers who crossed new horizons in exploration, and scientists and engineers associated with Pluto and the Kuiper Belt. This is the first set of official names of surface features on Pluto to be approved by the Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature of the International Astronomical Union (IAU), the internationally recognised authority for naming celestial bodies and their surface features.

 

About the IAU:

The International Astronomical Union (IAU) was founded in 1919. Its mission is to promote and safeguard the science of astronomy in all its aspects through international cooperation. Its individual members — structured into Divisions, Commissions, and Working Groups — are professional astronomers from all over the world, at the Ph.D. level and beyond, who are active in professional research and education in astronomy. The IAU has 12625 members.

Among other activities, it acts as the internationally recognized authority for assigning designations to celestial bodies (stars, planets, asteroids, etc.) and any surface features on them.

 

Sources: the hindu.


 

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

 

Sun and sea water powers vegetable farms in Jordan

9th-jordanveggi

A new project named “Sahara Forest Project” has been launched in Jordan. It aims to turn Jordan’s sand dunes into farming land to produce food using sun and sea water.

 

Details of the project:

  • In the first stage, the project aims to produce up to 130 tonnes of organic vegetables per year from an area the size of four football pitches. It also produces fresh water.
  • It will use solar panels to provide power and include outdoor planting space, two saltwater-cooled greenhouses, a water desalination unit and salt ponds for salt production.
  • The project, whose funders include Norway and the European Union, is to be expanded from three hectares to around 200 hectares of desert.

 

Need for such innovative initiatives:

According to recent United Nations estimations, deserts are expanding 30 times faster than at any time in history. In Africa, where the worst effects of climate changes are already visible, millions are on the move in search of arable land. With the world’s population expected to top 9 billion in 2050, land for food growth is growing scarce.

 

Way ahead:

The Sahara Forest Project demonstrates that innovative application of technology has the potential to revolutionize our land systems in a way that benefits the climate, people, and businesses.

 

Sources: the hindu.


 

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

 

Scientists make fuel from oxygen in air

scientist make clean fuel

Scientists have found a way to produce methanol — an important chemical often used as fuel in vehicles — using oxygen in the air, an advance that may lead to cleaner, greener industrial processes worldwide.

 

How was it produced?

Methanol was produced using nanoparticles of gold to initiate a chemical reaction between methane, oxygen and hydrogen peroxide. It can be done in one stage and at temperatures no higher than 50C (122F).

 

Significance of this discovery:

  • It could become an alternative to petrol. It is also believed the new system of creating methanol could be used to create chemicals and plastics.
  • The discovery promises to be not only cheaper, but much more environmentally friendly, as it both reduces energy consumption and conserves dwindling stocks of natural gas.
  • It also opens up the prospect for the first time of easily converting natural gas into methanol at the site where it is extracted, so that it can be piped as a liquid in normal atmospheric conditions. At the moment methane has to be condensed into liquid natural gas and shipped in pressurised containers.

 

Background:

Traditionally, methanol is created by converting methane into hydrogen and carbon monoxide at high temperatures, then reassembling them in a different order in a second highly pressurised process. The current two-stage ‘steam reforming’ process is very energy intensive, as it requires a lot of fuel to achieve high temperatures.

 

Sources: the hindu.