Insights Daily Current Events, 01 December 2015
Paper 3 Topic: Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.
Airtel to invest Rs. 60,000 crore in ‘Project Leap’
Airtel has announced an ambitious plan called Project Leap, of investing Rs 60,000 crore in telecom network. Over the next three years, with this investment Airtel aims work towards improving its network service and customer experience.
- Large parts of this investment will improve voice and data services.
- Funds will be raised through internal cash accruals and includes the capital expenditure target of about $2.2 billion for the current fiscal year.
- This investment will be in addition to the Rs.1,60,000 crore the company has already invested in its active and passive network, spectrum, fibre, submarine cables and other systems till date.
About Project Leap:
- It is a network transformation programme. Under this, Airtel will deploy over 70,000 base stations in the current fiscal, its largest deployment in a single year since inception. Over three years, more than 160,000 base stations will be set up nationwide.
- The company would expand its mobile broadband coverage to all towns and over 2,50,000 villages by March, and in three years, it plans to offer mobile broadband to over 500,000 villages in the country.
- It will also deploy a range of solutions including small cells, carrier aggregation solutions, wi-fi and the use of multiple technologies across different spectrum bands for its home broadband network.
- Airtel will cumulatively deploy more than 550,000 km of domestic and international fibre and will swap its legacy networks and base stations over a three year period and replace them with efficient technologies.
- The company will also upgrade its copper assets through new age Vectoring Technology. This technology will enable Airtel to offer 50 Mbps speeds from its current 16 Mbps by 2016.
- Under this programme, Airtel will also make substantial investments in green technologies over the next three years.
The announcement comes amid rising complaints of frequent call drops faced by the customers. The government had also pointed out that lack of investments in networks by operators was the primary reason for poor quality of services.
sources: the hindu.
Paper 2 Topic: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.
China hosts 1st BRICS media summit
China has taken the initiative for creating an alternative media platform for the emerging economies by hosting the first media summit of countries belonging to the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) grouping.
- A total of 25 media organisations are participating in this summit, which hopes to create a new institutional framework that would be tailored to benefit the media of five emerging economies, which have deep linkages with the Global South.
- The initiative follows the formation of the New Development Bank, which is playing its part in evolving a new global financial architecture sensitised to meet the needs of the developing world.
- The organizers of the summit hope that their deliberations will also yield an agenda-setting consensus among the BRICS media on coordinating the coverage of G-20 summits, in tune with the priorities of the emerging economies.
- BRICS is an association of five major emerging national economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
- The grouping was originally known as “BRIC” before the inclusion of South Africa in 2010.
- The BRICS members are all developing or newly industrialized countries, but they are distinguished by their large, fast-growing economies and significant influence on regional and global affairs.
- All five are G-20 members.
- Since 2009, the BRICS nations have met annually at formal summits. Russia currently holds the chair of the BRICS group, and hosted the group’s seventh summit in July 2015.
sources: the hindu, wiki.
Paper 3 Topic: Infrastructure: Energy.
Modi launches International Solar Alliance
Prime Minister Modi recently launched International Solar Alliance (ISA) in Paris on the sidelines of the climate change summit. This initiative highlights India’s leadership in clean energy.
- The alliance was launched at the CoP21 Climate Conference.
About the International Solar Alliance (ISA):
- This international alliance brings together developing and developed countries to expand energy access, accelerate solar power deployment, and stimulate economic development.
- The alliance will function from the National Institute of Solar Energy in India, Gurgaon.
- The Centre will provide land and $30 million to form a secretariat for the Alliance, and also support it for five years.
- In its launch resolution, the ISA says it seeks to share collective ambitions to reduce the cost of finance and technology that is needed to deploy solar power widely.
- Among the tasks that the Alliance would pursue are, cooperation in training, building institutions, regulatory issues, common standards, and investment including joint ventures.
The alliance has the potential to propel international solar markets forward while fighting climate change, improving global health and boosting economies.
sources: the hindu.
Paper 2 Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.
Injectible Polio Vaccine Launched in India
The union government has launched India’s first injectible inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) as part of the country’s commitment to global polio eradication.
- The IPV injection will be given to children below one year of age, along with the third dose of the Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) at the routine immunization sessions free of cost.
- According to reports, new evidence shows that IPV and OPV together will further strengthen children’s immune system and provide double protection against polio.
- In the first phase, the vaccine will be introduced in six states — Assam, Gujarat, Punjab, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, and Uttar Pradesh.
- The introduction of IPV in routine immunization is as per recommendation made in the World Health Assembly in May 2015.
- It should be noted that India was declared polio free in 2014.
Polio is a highly infectious viral disease, which mainly affects young children. The virus is transmitted by person-to-person spread mainly through the faecal-oral route or, less frequently, by a common vehicle (e.g. contaminated water or food) and multiplies in the intestine, from where it can invade the nervous system and can cause paralysis.
sources: the hindu.