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Insights Daily Current Affairs + PIB: 27 September 2019


Insights Daily Current Affairs + PIB: 27 September 2019


Table of contents:

 

GS Paper 2:

  1. Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Urban.
  2. National Population Register (NPR).
  3. Quad countries.
  4. World Tourism Day 2019.

 

GS Paper 3:

  1. PM- KISAN.
  2. High-Temperature Proton Exchange Membrane (HTPEM) technology.
  3. Project NETRA.
  4. Forest-PLUS 2.0.
  5. IPCC report on oceans.

 

GS Paper 4:

  1. Voluntary code of ethics.

 

Facts for Prelims:

  1. Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).
  2. Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
  3. Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar prize.
  4. Boiga thackerayi.

 


 

GS Paper 2:

 

Topics Covered:

  1. Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.

 

Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Urban

 

What to study?

For Prelims: PMAY- Urban- key features.

For Mains: Significance of the scheme, challenges ahead and measures needed to achieve the target.

 

Context: Cumulative no. of Houses Sanctioned Under PMAY(U) now more than 90 Lakhs.

 

What you need to know?

About PMAY- Urban:

  • Launched by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (MoHUPA) in Mission mode.
  • It envisions provision of Housing for All by 2022, when the Nation completes 75 years of its Independence.

 

The Mission seeks to address the housing requirement of urban poor including slum dwellers through following programme verticals:

  1. Slum rehabilitation of Slum Dwellers with participation of private developers using land as a resource.
  2. Promotion of Affordable Housing for weaker section through credit linked subsidy.
  3. Affordable Housing in Partnership with Public & Private sectors.
  4. Subsidy for beneficiary-led individual house construction /enhancement.

 

Beneficiaries and benefits:

The beneficiaries are poor and people living under EWS and LIG categories in the country.

  1. The government is providing an interest subsidy of 6.5% on housing loans which can be availed by beneficiaries for 15 years from start of loan date.
  2. The government will grant Rs 1 lakh to all the beneficiaries of the scheme. In addition, Rs 1.5 lakh will be given to all eligible urban poor who want to construct their houses in urban areas or plan to go for renovation in their existing houses.
  3. One can also avail loans under this scheme to build toilets in existing houses.

 

Ownership of houses:

House is to be allotted in the name of adult female member or in joint name and all houses to have toilet facility, drinking water and power supply. Preference is given to persons with disabilities, ST/ SC/ OBCs, minorities and transgender.

 

Challenges ahead:

  1. Government has to mobilise Rs 1 lakh crore in the next three years for achieving its target of building 1 crore houses.
  2. Other headwinds include: unavailability of land in prime areas, low participation of private developers on account of brand dilution and bidding mechanism.
  3. Also there are issues of stringent cost and time schedules resulting in low yields, increasing construction costs due to absence of bulk sourcing of materials, and lack of new technology that impacts productivity, cost efficiency and quality.

 

Sources: pib.


 

Topics covered:

  1. Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.

 

National Population Register (NPR)

 

What to study?

For prelims and mains: NPR- features, composition and uses.

 

Context: Government has revived National Population Register project at a time when National Register of Citizens has been published in Assam. This has raised concerns among many.

 

What is National Population Register (NPR)?

  • It is a Register of usual residents of the country.
  • It is being prepared at the local (Village/sub-Town), sub-District, District, State and National level under provisions of the Citizenship Act 1955 and the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.
  • It is mandatory for every usual resident of India to register in the NPR.
  • Objectives: To create a comprehensive identity database of every usual resident in the country.

 

Who is a usual resident?

A usual resident is defined for the purposes of NPR as a person who has resided in a local area for the past 6 months or more or a person who intends to reside in that area for the next 6 months or more.

 

Components:

  • The NPR database would contain demographic as well as biometric details.
  • As per the provisions of the NPR, a resident identity card (RIC)will be issued to individuals over the age of 18.
  • This will be a chip-embedded smart card containing the demographic and biometric attributes of each individual.
  • The UID number will also be printed on the card.

 

What is the controversy around it?

  1. Comes in the backdrop of the NRC excluding 19 lakh people in Assam.
  2. Even as a debate continues on Aadhaar and privacy, the NPR intends to collect a much larger amount of personal data on residents of India.
  3. The idea of conducting a nationwide NRC would only happen on the basis of the upcoming NPR. After a list of residents is created, a nationwide NRC could go about verifying the citizens from that list.
  4. There is yet no clarity on the mechanism for protection of this vast amount of data.

 

Why does the government want so much data?

  1. Every country must have a comprehensive identity database of its residents with relevant demographic details. It will help the government formulate its policies better and also aid national security.
  2. It will ease the life of those residing in India by cutting red tape. Not only will it help target government beneficiaries in a better way, but also further cut down paperwork and red tape in a similar manner that Aadhaar has done.
  3. With NPR data, residents will not have to furnish various proofs of age, address and other details in official work.
  4. It would also eliminate duplication in voter lists, government insists.

 

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Mains Question: Government has revived National Population Register project at a time when National Register of Citizens has been published in Assam. How are the two different? What kind of data will be collected, and why? Elucidate.


Topics covered:

  1. India and its neighbourhood- relations.

 

Quad countries

 

What to study?

For Prelims: Members of the Quad grouping, countries in the Indian ocean region, Chinese military bases.

For Mains: The Quad grouping- features, significance, concerns and potential.

 

Context: Foreign ministers of the Quad countries – India, US, Australia and Japan – met recently on the sidelines of the UNGA meeting.

 

Significance, focus and outcomes of latest meet:

  • The Ministers met to discuss cooperation on counter-terrorism, mentoring, assistance in disaster relief, airtime security, cooperation, development, finance and cybersecurity efforts etc.
  • The Quad countries were “resolute” in their view of the centrality of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) in South East Asia

 

What is Quad grouping?

  1. The quadrilateral formation includes Japan, India, United States and Australia.
  2. All four nations find a common ground of being the democratic nations and common interests of unhindered maritime trade and security.
  3. The idea was first mooted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in 2007. However, the idea couldn’t move ahead with Australia pulling out of it.

 

Significance of the grouping:

  1. Quad is an opportunity for like-minded countries to share notes and collaborate on projects of mutual interest.
  2. Members share a vision of an open and free Indo-Pacific.
  3. It is one of the many avenues for interaction among India, Australia, Japan and the US and should not be seen in an exclusive context.

 

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Mains Question: In its ambition and enthusiasm to actively engage in “Quadrilateral” grouping, India should not neglect its neighbours. Comment.


Topics Covered:

  1. Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

 

World Tourism Day 2019

 

What to study?

For Prelims: WTD- theme, objectives and significance, About UNWTO.

For Mains: Tourism industry- Significance, scope, challenges in development and ways to address them.

 

Context: This day is commemorated each year on 27 September, with celebrations led by UNWTO.

The day of September 27 was chosen for World Tourism Day because the Constitution of the World Tourism Organization was accepted on this day in 1970.

  • Objectives: to raise awareness about the role of tourism around the world and to promote social, cultural, political and economic values.
  • 2019 theme: “Tourism and jobs: a better future for all”.
  • Host: India.

 

About UNWTO:

What is it?

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is the United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism.

 

Members:

UNWTO’s membership includes 158 countries, 6 Associate Members and over 500 Affiliate Members representing the private sector, educational institutions, tourism associations and local tourism authorities.

 

Functions:

  1. Promotes tourism as a driver of economic growth, inclusive development and environmental sustainability and offers leadership and support to the sector in advancing knowledge and tourism policies worldwide.
  2. Encourages the implementation of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism, to maximize tourism’s socio-economic contribution while minimizing its possible negative impacts, and is committed to promoting tourism as an instrument in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), geared towards reducing poverty and fostering sustainable development worldwide.
  3. Generates market knowledge, promotes competitive and sustainable tourism policies and instruments, fosters tourism education and training, and works to make tourism an effective tool for development through technical assistance projects in over 100 countries around the world.

 

Sources: pib.


 

GS Paper 3:

 

Topics Covered:

  1. Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.

 

PM – KISAN scheme

 

What to study?

For Prelims: Key Features of the scheme.

For Mains: Significance, relevance and need for the scheme, concerns and challenges over its implementation, is it sufficient?

 

Context: The government has opened the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-Kisan) portal for self-registration by farmers.

Significance of this move: Allowing self-enrolment is expected to help farmers in other States whose names have been missed out. Many States have been slow in enrolling farmers for various reasons.

 

About Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi:

  • Under this programme, vulnerable landholding farmer families, having cultivable land upto 2 hectares, will be provided direct income support at the rate of Rs. 6,000 per year. This income support will be transferred directly into the bank accounts of beneficiary farmers, in three equal installments of Rs. 2,000 each.
  • The complete expenditure of Rs 75000 crore for the scheme will borne by the Union Government in 2019-20.

 

What is a small and marginal landholder family?

It comprises of husband, wife and minor children up to 18 years of age, who collectively own cultivable land up to two hectare as per the land records of the concerned states.

Significance of the scheme:

Around 12 crore small and marginal farmer families are expected to benefit from this. It would not only provide assured supplemental income to the most vulnerable farmer families, but would also meet their emergent needs especially before the harvest season. It would pave the way for the farmers to earn and live a respectable living.

 

Similar programmes by states:

  1. Bhavantar Bhugtan Yojana in Madhya Pradeshwas sought to provide relief to farmers by providing the differential between MSPs and market prices.
  2. The Rythu Bandhu scheme of the Telangana provides ₹4,000 per acre for every season to all the farmers of the state. Similar initiatives have also be framed in Jharkhand and Odisha.
  3. Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income augmentation (KALIA) of Odisha is more complicated in design and implementation. It commits to give Rs 5,000 per SMF, twice a year, that is Rs 10,000 a year.

 

Benefits of direct cash transfers:

  1. Immediate impact on reducing hunger and rural poverty.
  2. Help households to overcome credit constraints and manage risk. This can increase productive investment, increase access to markets and stimulate local economies.
  3. Income support can be used to make a repayment or at least activate a bank account which can then receive a loan.
  4. Increase investment in agricultural inputs, including farm implements and livestock.
  5. Serve as an important complement to a broader rural development agenda, including a pro-poor growth strategy focusing on agriculture.

 

Challenges with cash transfers- criticisms:

  1. Cash transfers are not greatly superior in terms of leakages compared to other schemes of in-kind transfer such as the public distribution system (PDS).
  2. A targeted cash transfer scheme envisions the role of the state to only providing cash income to the poor. This kind of approach seeks to absolve the state of its responsibility in providing basic services such as health, education, nutrition and livelihood.
  3. Cash transfer scheme cannot be substituted for subsidies and other institutional support systems such as the National Food Security Act-powered public distribution system. In fact, such cash transfer schemes could be counterproductive and may lead to more distress.
  4. Cash transfer is neither a substitute for the structural reforms needed in agriculture, nor does it adequately compensate the farmer for the risks and uncertainty of crop cultivation.
  5. In the absence of proper tenancy records, it will benefit the absentee landlords.
  6. It is no substitute for the lack of investment in agriculture, which has declined at 2.3% per annum in real terms.

 

Sources: pib.

 

Mains Question: Discuss the significance of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN)? What are the bottlenecks in the scheme? Do you think it can serve as a path-breaking support incentive for farmers?


Topics Covered:

  1. Indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

 

High-Temperature Proton Exchange Membrane (HTPEM) technology

 

What to study?

For Prelims: About fuel cells and HTPEM technology.

For Mains: Significance and application of the technology.

 

Context: India’s first indigenously developed high-temperature based Fuel Cell System was recently introduced. It is a 5.0 kW fuel cell system that generates power in a green manner.

The developed fuel cells are based on High-Temperature Proton Exchange Membrane (HTPEM) technology.

 

Key facts:

  • Developed under the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in partnership with Indian industries.
  • Built under India’s flagship programme named ‘New Millennium Indian Technology Leadership Initiative (NMITLI)’.

 

How it works?

It takes methanol or bio-methane as the input and produces heat and water as its bi-products, which can be further used. This helps to attain an efficiency that is greater than 70%, which is difficult to achieve by other energy sources.

 

Applications:

  1. Suitable for distributed stationary power applications like; for small offices, commercial units, data centers etc.; where highly reliable power is essential with simultaneous requirement for air-conditioning.
  2. It will also meet the requirement of efficient, clean and reliable backup power generator for telecom towers, remote locations and strategic applications as well.
  3. Replace Diesel Generating (DG) sets and help reduce India’s dependence on crude oil.

 

What is HTPEM technology?

High Temperature Proton-Exchange-Membrane (HTPEM) is the core of the fuel cells running above 150 °C. As in classical PEM fuel cells technology, Hydrogen is electrochemically split to proton and electron on anode. Proton is transported through membrane to cathode while electricity is yielded in external circuit. At cathode protons recombine with electron and reacts further with Oxygen to water and heat.

The technology can achieve efficiency approaching 90% calculated as combined yield of electricity and heat.

 

Significance of HTPEM technology:

  1. HT-PEM Technology enables simple and cost effective fuel cell systems that can operate on fuel sources available today, such as natural gas, propane, and methanol.
  2. When compared to low temperature PEM fuel cells, subsystems for membrane humidification and carbon monoxide clean up from reformate can be eliminated.

 

The operation of polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells at temperatures above 150°C offers very significant advantages compared to the conventional PEM fuel cells which are listed below:

  1. High CO tolerance
  2. No need for humidified gases
  3. High power-to-volume ratio
  4. Reduced complexity
  5. Low cost

 

What is New Millennium Indian Technology Leadership Initiative (NMITLI)?

  1. It is the largest Public-Private-Partnership effort within the R&D domain in the country.
  2. It seeks to catalyze innovation centred scientific and technological developments as a vehicle to attain for Indian industry a global leadership position, in selected niche areas.
  3. It synergizes the best competencies of publicly funded R&D institutions, academia, and private industry.
  4. It has so far evolved 60 largely networked projects in diversified areas viz. Agriculture & Plant Biotechnology, General Biotechnology, Bioinformatics, Drugs & Pharmaceuticals, Chemicals, Materials, Information and Communication Technology, and Energy.

 

Sources: pib.


Topics Covered:

  1. Indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

 

Project NETRA

 

What to study?

For Prelims and Mains: Key features and significance of the project.

 

Context: ISRO has initiated ‘Project NETRA’ – an early warning system in space to detect debris and other hazards to Indian satellites.

 

What is Project NETRA (Network for space object Tracking and Analysis)?

  • Under the project, the ISRO plans to put up many observational facilities: connected radars, telescopes; data processing units and a control centre.
  • They can, among others, spot, track and catalogue objects as small as 10 cm, up to a range of 3,400 km and equal to a space orbit of around 2,000 km.

 

Significance of the project:

  1. The project will give India its own capability in space situational awareness (SSA) like the other space powers — which is used to ‘predict’ threats from debris to Indian satellites.
  2. NETRA’s eventual goal is to capture the GEO, or geostationary orbit, scene at 36,000 km where communication satellites operate.
  3. The effort would make India a part of international efforts towards tracking, warning about and mitigating space debris.

 

Need:

Currently there are 15 functional Indian communication satellites in the geostationary orbit of 36,000 km; 13 remote sensing satellites in LEO of up to 2,000 km; and eight navigation satellites in medium earth orbits. Their protection is utmost importance for India.

 

Background:

  • Space junk is an ever-growing problem with more than 7,500 tonnes of redundant hardware now thought to be circling the Earth. Ranging from old rocket bodies and defunct spacecraft through to screws and even flecks of paint – this material poses a collision hazard to operational missions.
  • The rising population of space debris increases the potential danger to all space vehicles, but especially to the International Space Station (ISS), space shuttles, satellites and other spacecraft.

 

Sources: the Hindu.


Topics Covered:

Conservation related issues.

Forest-PLUS 2.0

 

What to study?

For Prelims and mains: Key features and significance of the programme.

 

Context: US Agency for International Development (USAID) and India’s Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) have launched Forest-PLUS 2.0.

 

What is it?

  1. Forest-PLUS is a five-year programme initiated in December 2018 that focuses on developing tools and techniques to bolster ecosystem management and harnessing ecosystem services in forest landscape management.
  2. Forest-PLUS 2.0, the second set of pilot projects, is meant to enhance sustainable forest landscape management after Forest-PLUS completed its five years in 2017.
  3. The programme’s first set focused on capacity building to help India participate in Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+). It included four pilot projects in Sikkim, Rampur, Shivamogga and Hoshangabad.
  4. Under these, field tests, innovative tools and approaches for Indian forest management were developed. Promotion of bio-briquettes in Sikkim, introduction of solar heating systems in Rampur and development of an agro-forestry model in Hoshangabad were some of the achievements of this programme.
  5. Forest-PLUS 2.0 comprises pilot project in three landscapes — Gaya in Bihar, Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala and Medak in Telangana. The choice of these sites was driven by the contrast in their landscapes – Bihar is a forest deficit area, Telangana is a relatively drier area where there is ample scope for community livelihood enhancement and Kerala is rich in biodiversity.

 

The targets of this set are:

  1. 1,20,000 hectares of land under improved management.
  2. New, inclusive economic activity worth $12 million.
  3. Measurable benefits accrued to 800,000 households.
  4. Three incentive mechanisms demonstrated in managing landscapes for ecosystem services.

 

To achieve these targets, the programme has three focal points of action:

  1. Developing tools for multiple services in forests management. The tools consist innovative apps for automating forest planning processes, model forest management plans. These tools are expected to result in enhanced water flow and quality, improved livelihoods and resilience of forest-dependent communities.
  2. Developing incentive-based instruments for leveraging finance. For example, a payment mechanism where a municipality or industry would pay upstream forest communities to use water flowing down because of improved forest management.
  3. Unlocking economic opportunities for forest-dependent people by modelling and setting up conservation enterprises and mobilising investment from the private sector.

 

Sources: the Hindu.


 

New IPCC report warns of dire threat to oceans

 

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a special report- ‘Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate’. The report underlines the dire changes taking place in oceans, glaciers and ice-deposits on land and sea.

  • It was prepared following an IPCC Panel decision in 2016 to prepare three Special Reports and follows the Special Reports on Global Warming of 1.5°C, and on Climate Change and Land (SRCCL).

 

Key findings:

  1. Over the 21st century, the ocean is projected to transition to unprecedented conditions with increased temperatures, further ocean acidification, marine heatwaves and more frequent extreme El Niño and La Niña events.
  2. The global ocean has warmed unabated since 1970 and has taken up more than 90% of the excess heat in the climate system.
  3. Since 1993, the rate of ocean warming has more than doubled.
  4. Marine heatwaves have very likely doubled in frequency since 1982 and are increasing in intensity.
  5. Floods will become more frequent and severe in the mountainous and downstream areas of the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra river basins, because of an increase in extreme precipitation events.

 

Sources: the Hindu.

 


 

GS Paper 4:

 

Voluntary Code of Ethics

 

Context: Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) on behalf of its members has agreed to observe the “Voluntary Code of Ethics” during all future elections. IAMAI has assured the Election Commission that the platforms will cooperate in ensuring the conduct of free and fair elections. 

 

Background:

As a result of Commission’s vigorous persuasion, all the major social media platforms and IAMAI came together and mutually devised this “Voluntary Code of Ethics” for the General Elections 2019. This came into immediate effect from the day it was presented to the Commission on 20th March, 2019. During the election period, social media platforms took action on 909 violative cases, reported by the ECI.

 

The highlighted features of “Voluntary Code of Ethics” are as follows:

  1. Social Media platforms will voluntarily undertake information, education and communication campaigns to build awareness including electoral laws and other related instructions. 
  2. Social Media platforms have created a high priority dedicated grievance redressal channel for taking expeditions action on the cases reported by the ECI. 
  3. Social Media Platforms and ECI have developed a notification mechanism by this ECI can notify the relevant platforms of potential violations of Section 126 of the R.P. Act, 1951 and other electoral laws. 
  4. Platforms will ensure that all political advertisements on their platforms are pre-certified from the Media Certification and Monitoring Committees as per the directions of Hon’ble Supreme Court. 
  5. Participating platforms are committed to facilitate transparency in paid political advertisements, including utilising their pre-existing labels/disclosure technology for such advertisements. 

 

Sources: the Hindu.

 


Facts for Prelims:

 

In News- About APEDA:

Context: The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) was established by the Government of India under the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority Act 1985.

The Authority replaced the Processed Food Export Promotion Council (PFEPC).

Chairman – Appointed by the Central Government.

APEDA is mandated with the responsibility of export promotion and development of the following scheduled products:

  1. Fruits, Vegetables and their Products.
  2. Meat and Meat Products.
  3. Poultry and Poultry Products.
  4. Dairy Products.
  5. Confectionery, Biscuits and Bakery Products.
  6. Honey, Jaggery and Sugar Products.
  7. Cocoa and its products, chocolates of all kinds.
  8. Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic Beverages.
  9. Cereal and Cereal Products.
  10. Groundnuts, Peanuts and Walnuts.
  11. Pickles, Papads and Chutneys.
  12. Guar Gum.
  13. Floriculture and Floriculture Products.
  14. Herbal and Medicinal Plants.

 

 

Caribbean Community (CARICOM or CC):

Context: Prime Minister of India met with 14 leaders of the CARICOM group of countries on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

Outcome: The meeting deliberated on the steadily intensifying and deepening relations between India and partner countries of the Caribbean, not only in the bilateral but also in the regional context.

India’s assistance: India has provided immediate financial assistance of USD 1 million to recover from the destruction caused by Hurricane Dorian in the region and the worst-hit island of Bahamas.

India also announced a USD 14 million grant for community development projects in the CARICOM and another 150 million Line of Credit for solar, renewable energy and climate- change-related projects.

What is CARICOM?

  • It is an organisation of fifteen Caribbean nations and dependencies having primary objectives to promote economic integration and cooperation among its members, to ensure that the benefits of integration are equitably shared, and to coordinate foreign policy.
  • The organisation was established in 1973.
  • Its major activities involve coordinating economic policies and development planning; devising and instituting special projects for the less-developed countries within its jurisdiction; operating as a regional single market for many of its members (Caricom Single Market); and handling regional trade disputes. The secretariat headquarters is in Georgetown, Guyana.
  • CARICOM is an official United Nations Observer.

 

Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize:

Context: President of India Ram Nath Kovind, presented Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prizes 2019, for outstanding contributions in science and technology.

What is it? The award is named after the founder Director of the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), the late Dr (Sir) Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar and is known as the ‘Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar (SSB) Prize for Science and Technology’. The Prize is given each year for outstanding contributions to science and technology.

Nature of the Prize: SSB Prizes, each of the value of Rs 5,00,000 (Rupees five lakh only), are awarded annually for notable and outstanding research, applied or fundamental, in the following disciplines: (i) Biological Sciences, (ii) Chemical Sciences, (iii) Earth, Atmosphere, Ocean and Planetary Sciences, (iv) Engineering Sciences, (v) Mathematical Sciences, (vi) Medical Sciences and (vii) Physical Sciences.

Eligibility:

  1. Any citizen of India engaged in research in any field of science and technology up to the age of 45 years. Overseas citizen of India (OCI) and Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) working in India are also eligible.
  2. The Prize is bestowed on a person who, in the opinion of CSIR, has made conspicuously important and outstanding contributions to human knowledge and progress – fundamental and applied – in the particular field of endeavour, which is his/her specialization.
  3. The Prize is awarded on the basis of contributions made through work done primarily in India during the five years preceding the year of the Prize.

 

Boiga thackerayi:

  • It is a new species of snake that has been discovered in the Western Ghats in Maharashtra.
  • The species falls in the category commonly called cat snakes.
  • It belongs to the genus Boiga and has Tiger like stripes on its body.
  • This is the second species of Boiga after B. dightoni that is endemic to the Western Ghats and the first new species of Boiga described after 125 years from the Western Ghats.