Online Quiz Test

A plastic-rock hybrid was discovered on the Andaman island of Aves.


In News

  • During routine monitoring of marine litter in the remote Andaman and Nicobar Islands, a team of marine biologists discovered a piece of plastic rock.


The rock discovered on a beach on Aves Island is the first of its kind to be discovered in India. The rock is composed of sand, rock fragments, shells, and other materials held together by plastic, resulting in a plastic-rock hybrid known as Plastiglomerate. In 2014, scientists described a brand-new form of plastic pollution.

  • Laboratory analysis revealed that polyethene and polyvinyl chloride, two widely used plastic polymers, bind the smaller rock and sand particles to form a rock.
  • Other recently identified types of marine plastic pollution include plastic crust (a layer of plastic encrusted onto ocean rocks and Pyroclastic– burnt plastic that looks like pebbles).
  • These forms of plastic pollution have the capacity to persist for millions of years and may even enter the geological record.

Aves Island

  • Located in the Andaman Islands’ North and South Andaman districts. The island is located 140 kilometres north of Port Blair. According to the 2011 Census, only two individuals reside on Aves Island. Each is male.

Source: HT


Caste and Affinity Test Claims

GS1 GS 2 Mechanisms, Laws, Institutions & Bodies for Protection & Betterment of these Sections

In News

  • In a recent decision, the Supreme Court ruled that an affinity test cannot be the deciding factor in a caste claim.

More about the news

  • Supreme Court’s judgment:
  • A three-judge bench was resolving divergent opinions regarding the utility of affinity tests for proving caste/tribe claims.
  • It was stated that an affinity test is not always required to determine the validity of a caste or tribe claim.



Caste Claim

• Any individual claiming to be a member of a Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, or Other Backward Class must provide a certificate to the Appointing Authority/Selection Committee/Board, etc. in support of his claim in order to be eligible for reservation and various relaxations and concessions.

• Only the Caste/Tribe/Community certificate issued by the appointing authorities in the prescribed form for SCs/STs and for OBCs is accepted as proof that a candidate belongs to the Scheduled Caste or the Scheduled Tribe or the Other Backward Class.

About the affinity test:

• An affinity test requires the study and preparation of a report by authorities on caste/tribe claims based on the peculiar anthropological and ethnological characteristics, deities, rituals, customs, mode of marriage, death ceremonies, methods of burial of the dead, etc., of the particular caste or tribe and the applicant’s knowledge of them.

· However, the court stated that “affinity tests are never conclusive” in proving caste/tribe membership.



Conflicting views:

  • One view held that:
  • If a candidate fails the affinity test at any stage, he cannot receive a caste validity certificate.
  • The second view was that: 
  • The affinity test was not the only criterion for deciding a caste claim based on a caste certificate issued by a competent authority.
  • It was held that the affinity test could be used only as a means to corroborate the documentary evidence.
  • Reason:
  • The bench reasoned that if the applicant and his family have resided in larger urban areas for decades, or if the applicant’s family has resided in such urban areas for decades, the applicant may lack knowledge of the facts.
  • In some instances, even the parents of the applicants are unaware of inherent tribal or caste characteristics, as they have resided in larger urban areas for several years.

About the Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) 

  • About:
  • The Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) are among the most disadvantaged socioeconomic groups in India. The terms are also recognised by the Indian Constitution.
  • Pre-independence recognition:
  • Since the 1850s, these communities have been known as Depressed Classes, along with Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
  • Early in the 20th century, there was a flurry of activity among British authorities assessing the viability of India’s self-government.
  • In this context, the Morley–Minto Reforms Report, the Montagu–Chelmsford Reforms Report, and the Simon Commission were significant initiatives.
  • The Government of India Act of 1935 defined “Scheduled Castes.”
  • Post-independence Constitutional validation:
  • These communities became known as Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes pursuant to Clause 1 of Articles 341 and 342, respectively.

Establishment of the National Commissions:

  • Articles 338 and 338-A of the Indian Constitution establish the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, respectively.

Provisions safeguarding the rights of SCs and Sts in India

  • The Indian government has enacted laws to eliminate discrimination and has implemented numerous reforms to enhance the quality of life for the disadvantaged segments of society. Few are:
  • Constitutionally protected fundamental human rights
  • In 1950, “untouchability” was abolished
  • Establishing social welfare departments and national commissions for the welfare of scheduled castes and tribes.
  • Providing reservations in places such as educational institutions, employment opportunities, etc.
  • Right to Equality
  • Articles 14, 15, 16, 17, and 18 of the Indian Constitution elaborate on the Right to Equality.
  • It refers to equality before the law, eliminating any unfairness based on caste, race, religion, place of birth, or sex.
  • It also includes equal employment opportunities, the abolition of untouchability, and the elimination of titles.


Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act

· Induction:

· In order to prevent atrocities against SC/STs, the Indian government passed the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act in 1989.

·  The intent of the Act was to prevent atrocities and promote the social integration of Dalits.

· Aim:

· This legislation aims to prevent crimes committed against Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes by individuals who are not Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

· Offender:

· o An offender is anyone who is not a member of a scheduled caste or tribe and who commits an offence listed in the Act against a member of a scheduled caste or tribe.

· Cognizable offence:

· Every offence listed in the statute is actionable.

·  The police may arrest the suspect without a warrant and initiate an investigation into the case without court authorization.

· Punishments:

· The statute specifies both minimum and maximum penalties. In most cases, the minimum sentence is six months, while the maximum is five years plus a fine.

· In some cases, the minimum sentence is increased to one year, while the maximum sentence can reach life in prison or even the death penalty.




Source: TH

Scheme for Institutions of Eminence (IOE)

GS 2 Education Governance

In News

  • Recently, Indian express published a report indicating that the autonomy promised under the IOE scheme exists only on paper.


  • The institutes of eminence programme, administered by the Union human resource ministry, aims to promote global recognition of Indian institutes.
  • Institutes selected under the programme enjoy complete academic and administrative autonomy.


  • Only institutions of higher education currently positioned in the top 500 of global rankings or the top 50 of the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) are eligible to apply for the eminence designation.
  • Private Institutions of Eminence may also be established as greenfield ventures, provided that the sponsoring organisation submits a compelling 15-year perspective plan.
  • The selection is made using the challenge method by the Empowered Expert Committee formed for the purpose.

Issues with the scheme:

  • No Funding: Private campuses do not receive funding under the IOE scheme.
  • Multiplicity of regulators:Although IOE regulations promise autonomy from the University Grants Commission, there are over 15 bodies that regulate higher education, resulting in red tape, delays, and compliance requirements, according to the report cited above.
  • Mirage of Autonomy:The Report finds that UGC continues to intervene in matters ranging from department naming to fee setting.
  • Difficult Visa norms:the IOE institutes find the 2 year  visa given to foreign faculty very short and a bottle neck in attracting best of faculties from around the world.

Way Forward:

  • The establishment of a governing body for higher education and the relaxation of visa requirements for foreign faculty in these institutes will accelerate the achievement of the objectives of the IOE scheme.

Source: IE

Knowledge of IMF Bailouts

GS 3 Indian Economy & Related Issues

In News

  • The IMF agrees to consider Sri Lanka’s bailout plans in light of the country’s economic crisis


  • The International Monetary Fund (IMF) confirmed a $3 billion rescue plan for Sri Lanka’s ailing economy last week.
  • The IMF plays a key role in promoting global economic stability through its policies, particularly bailouts, which have a significant impact on the global economy and on individual countries around the world.
  • Prior to lending countries money, the IMF typically imposes conditions such as structural reforms.
  • The IMF also confirmed its negotiations with Pakistan for a $1.1 billion bailout plan, as the country faces a severe economic crisis characterised by a depreciating currency and a rise in prices.

What is the International Monetary Fund?

  • The International Monetary Fund is an international organisation that was founded in 1944 to promote international economic cooperation, exchange rate stability, and resources to member countries experiencing economic difficulties.
  • It is headquartered in Washington D.C., United States, and currently has 190 member countries. Each member country has a certain number of votes in the IMF based on its quota system, which reflects its relative economic importance in the world.
  • Currently, the IMF has more than $1 trillion in assets, which it uses to provide loans and other forms of assistance to its members.

Major roles

  • Lending: The IMF provides loans to member nations experiencing difficulties with their balance of payments in order to alleviate short-term economic issues and implement policies that will lead to long-term stability.
  • Surveillance: It monitors global economic developments and provides advice and assistance to member countries to help them maintain macroeconomic stability.
  • Technical Assistance: It provides technical assistance to member countries in areas such as tax policy, budget management, and financial sector regulation.
  • Capacity Building: In addition, the IMF offers capacity building programmes to help member nations develop the necessary skills and institutions to effectively manage their economies.
India and IMF 

· • In the late 1980s and early 1990s, India faced a severe economic crisis due to a balance of payment crisis, high inflation, and large fiscal deficits.

· In 1991, the Indian government implemented a series of economic reforms known as the New Economic Policy to address these issues. India sought assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to stabilise its economy and restore confidence in the financial system of the country. In 1991, India signed a $2.

· 2 billion loan agreement with the IMF, which was the largest loan the IMF had ever extended to a single country.

· The IMF bailout in the 1990s was instrumental in India’s economic reforms and helped put the nation on a path to sustained economic growth and development.



How does the IMF help countries?

  • The IMF basically lends money, often in the form of special drawing rights (SDRs), to troubled • SDRs simply represent a basket of five currencies, namely the U.S. dollar, the euro, the Chinese yuan, the Japanese yen, and the British pound, which are the economies that seek the lender’s assistance.
  • The IMF finances troubled economies through a variety of lending programmes, including the extended credit facility, flexible credit line, stand-by agreement, etc.
  • Depending on their particular circumstances, countries receiving the bailout can utilise the SDRs for a variety of purposes.
  • Both Sri Lanka and Pakistan are in dire need of U.S. dollars to import essential goods and pay their foreign debts at the present time.

Need for IMF bailouts

  • Economic Stability: The purpose of IMF bailouts is to stabilise a country’s economy, prevent further economic decline, and restore confidence in the nation’s ability to repay its debts.
  • Preventing Contagion: IMF bailouts help prevent financial crises from spreading to other countries by containing the economic damage and stabilizing the financial system of the affected country.
  • Structural Reforms: IMF bailouts often come with conditions for economic policy changes and structural reforms that can help the country address its underlying economic problems and put it on a sustainable path to growth and development.
  • Access to International Capital Markets: Support from the IMF can assist a nation in regaining access to international capital markets, which is crucial for economic growth and development.
  • Multilateral Cooperation: Bailouts from the IMF are a form of multilateral cooperation that promotes global financial stability and economic growth.
  • Major issues with IMF bailouts
  • Conditionality: Typically, IMF bailouts are accompanied by stringent conditions that require countries to implement painful economic reforms, such as austerity measures and structural adjustments, which can be politically challenging to implement and have negative effects on vulnerable populations.
  • Moral hazard: Moral hazard can result from IMF bailouts if countries become dependent on the IMF and do not take the necessary steps to address their underlying economic problems, knowing that the IMF will provide financial assistance.
  • Debt sustainability: Bailouts can also exacerbate a country’s debt problem by providing temporary relief without addressing the underlying structural issues that led to the crisis in the first place leading to a cycle of repeated IMF bailouts and increasing debt burdens.
  • Political interference: There have been instances where the IMF has been accused of political interference in the countries which can undermine the credibility of the IMF and create tensions between the organization and the recipient country.
  • Social impact:Bailouts from the IMF can have negative social effects, especially on vulnerable populations like the poor and the marginalised.
  • Conclusion
  • As financial assistance programmes, IMF bailouts have been beneficial in providing relief to countries experiencing economic crises or facing the risk of defaulting on their debts.
  • On the long term, IMF bailouts play a crucial role in stabilising the global financial system and preventing economic crises from becoming full-blown financial pandemics.

Source: TH

Modifications to Finance Bill 2023

GS 3 Indian Economy & Related Issues

In News

Recently, the Amended Finance bill 2023 was passed without debate in parliament.


  • The Upper House returned the Jammu and Kashmir Appropriation Bill and the Finance Bill to the Lok Sabha without debate despite opposition protests.
  • Similarly, the Lok Sabha passed the bill without debate or introductory remarks from the Ministers.

Procedure for Money Bill in the Parliament:

  • Article 110 addresses currency bills.
  • Money bills can only be introduced in Lok Sabha and only with the recommendation of the president. It is a government bill that can only be proposed by a minister. When the Lok Sabha passes the bill and transmits it to the Rajya Sabha.
  • It must be returned within 14 days, regardless of whether RS makes recommendations, takes no action, or rejects outright.
  • The LS has the option to accept or reject the recommendations before sending them to the president. The President may accept or reject a spending bill, but he cannot send it back for reconsideration, and there is no provision for a joint session of both houses to break the impasse.

 Important Amendments  of The bill :

  • The federal government has eliminated the long-term capital gains treatment (with indexation benefits) for income from debt mutual funds and other schemes that invest up to 35 percent of their assets in domestic equity shares.
  • Prior to the amendment, the investments were considered long-term investments and were taxed at a rate of 20% with indexation benefits.
  • Enhanced tax benefits for offshore banking units operating in GIFT city; for ten years, offshore banking units will receive a 100 percent income deduction.
  • The tax rate on royalties and technical fees earned by non-resident (non-domiciled) companies increased from 10% to 20%. This would increase import prices in the absence of a bilateral trade agreement.
  • There is no change to the taxation of non-par savings insurance products (the?5 million cap remains).
  • There will be no change to the taxation of REITs/InviTs despite claims (REIT income will be taxed as “income from other sources” and not as capital gains).
  • The securities transaction tax (STT) on the sale of options has been increased from?1,700 to?2,100 on a turnover of?1 crore, a 23.5% increase, while the STT on the sale of futures contracts has been increased from?10,000 to?12,500 on a turnover of?1 crore, a 25% increase.

Additional Information: Different types of Bills

  • Financial Bills:A Financial Bill is a bill that contains provisions related to taxation and expenditure, in addition to provisions related to any other subject. Therefore, if a bill only addresses government expenditures and no other issues, it will be a financial bill.
  • Money Bills: A Bill is said to be a Money Bill if it only contains provisions related to taxation, borrowing of money by the government, expenditure from or receipt to the Consolidated Fund of India. Bills that only contain provisions that are incidental to these matters would also be regarded as Money Bills.
  • Constitution Amendment Bills: These are Bills which seek to amend the Constitution.
  • Ordinary Bills:Other bills are known as ordinary bills.
Key Terms 

· Long Term Capital gains : Increase in the value of a savings instrument (Capital Gain) is taxed at a lower rate if the security is held for more than three years.

· Indexation : Indexation is used to adjust the purchase price of an investment to reflect the effect of inflation on it.For Example: consider a capital gain of Rs. 50,000. Indexation considers The cost of inflation index (CII) and reduces the capital gain to a lower value , thereby saving the tax liability

· Securities Transaction Tax (STT): It is a tax on the value of securities traded on a recognised stock exchange in India.

· REITS/InviTs: Real estate investment trusts (REITs) and infrastructure investment trusts (InvITs) are financial instruments that enable developers to monetize revenue-generating real estate and infrastructure assets while allowing investors to invest in these assets without actually owning them.


under the Essential Commodities Act, a committee to oversee Tur

GS 3 Indian Economy & Related Issues

In News

  • The government recently announced the formation of a committee to monitor tur dal inventories held by importers, mills, stockists, and traders in order to prevent hoarding and speculation.


  • Additionally, in order to facilitate easy and seamless imports, the government has eliminated the 10% levy on tur imports from non-LDC nations, as the levy imposes procedural obstacles even for duty-free imports from LDC nations (LDCs).
  • India signed a memorandum of understanding with Mozambique for the import of 0.2 MT of tur annually for five years in 2016, when the retail price of tur soared to Rs 200 per kilogramme. The duration of this agreement was extended by five years in September 2021.
  • On August 12, 2015, the government issued an advisory to state governments and union territories under the Essential Commodities Act, 1955, mandating the disclosure of tur dal inventory.
  • Tur is a variety of long-duration (180-day) pulses that is grown under rainfed conditions. It is grown in several Indian states, including Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Uttar Pradesh, among others. 10 to 12 percent of India’s domestic consumption is met through imports.

What is the Essential Commodities Act, 1955?

  • The Essential Commodities Act of 1955 was enacted to combat India’s food shortage during that time period. The act also prohibits the hoarding and illegal sale of food products.
  • India relied on imports and assistance from other nations, including the importation of Wheat from the United States, to feed its population.

What are Essential Commodities?

  • The Essential Commodities Act, 1955 does not define essential commodities, but Section 2(A) of the act specifies that a “essential commodity” is a commodity listed in the Schedule to the Act.
  • This act grants the Union government the authority to add or remove an item from the schedule. The federal government, in consultation with state governments, can designate an item as essential if necessary.
  • In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, face masks and hand sanitizer were added to the list on March 13, 2020.
  • The government has the ability to regulate the production, supply, and distribution of declared essential commodities, as well as impose a stock limit.

Withdrawal of the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act 2020

  • In 2020, the Essential Commodities (Amendment) was passed, allowing the government to remove certain ‘essential’ commodities from the list. It is argued that there are no exceptional circumstances, such as war, famine, natural disasters, or extraordinary price increases, and therefore these items can be removed from the list. However, the act was repealed by the Centre in response to widespread farmer protests across India.

Issues Related to Essential Commodities Act 1955

The Essential Commodities Act contains no equivalent penalties for black marketing or hoarding.

  • The Economic Survey 2019-20 emphasised that government intervention under the ECA 1955 frequently distorts agricultural trade while having no effect on inflation control. Such an intervention does facilitate rent-seeking and harassment.

Source: FE

Constellation OneWeb

GS 3 Space

In News

ISRO’s LVM-3 successfully launches the OneWeb constellation’s final satellites.


  • India’s most powerful rocket, Launch Vehicle Mark-3 (LVM3), recently launched satellites for OneWeb’s first-generation internet constellation from India’s Satish Dhawan Space Centre.
  • The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) rocket launched 36 OneWeb broadband satellites into low Earth orbit (LEO), a circular path approximately 450 kilometres (280 miles) above Earth.
  • Over the coming days and weeks, the satellites will raise their orbits to a final altitude of about 745 miles (1,200 km).
  • This was the 18th and final mission dedicated to expanding OneWeb’s first-generation broadband constellation in LEO, which consisted of 582 satellites prior to the launch.
  • LVM3 is India’s tallest and strongest rocket, capable of delivering 17,600 pounds (8,000 kilogrammes) of payload to LEO, whereas the 36 OneWeb satellites launched weighed a total of 12,798 pounds (5,805 kg).
  • India has been concentrating on increasing its share of the global commercial space market, which is currently only 2%.

What is OneWeb Constellation?

  • About:
  • OneWeb Constellation is a satellite-based network that aims to provide worldwide high-speed and low-latency Internet connectivity.
  • It is a joint venture between the United Kingdom-based OneWeb Group and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), in conjunction with NewSpace India Ltd. (NSIL).
  • Important features:
  • OneWeb Constellation is composed of 588 active satellites arranged in 12 rings of 49 satellites each.
  • The satellites are positioned in low Earth orbit (LEO) and orbit the planet once every 109 minutes.
  • The network provides high-speed, low-latency connectivity, allowing communities, businesses, and governments around the world to connect and access the internet.
  • The constellation will deliver secure solutions not only to businesses, but also to towns, villages, municipalities, and schools, including India’s most inaccessible regions.


Major challenges of space-based broadband projects

  • Cost:Building, launching, and maintaining a constellation of satellites can be extremely costly.
  • Technical issues: Satellites must be able to communicate with ground stations and with one another, and designing, constructing, and operating a constellation of satellites presents numerous technical challenges.
  • Orbital debris: The increasing amount of debris in space can pose a risk to satellites and their operations.
  • Regulatory issues:Space-based broadband projects must comply with national and international regulations governing the use of space, including regulations related to radio frequency interference, orbital debris, and spectrum allocation.
  • Environmental concerns: The deployment of large constellations of satellites can have an impact on the space environment, potentially increasing the risk of collisions and contributing to the accumulation of orbital debris.
  • Competition: There are numerous companies and organisations competing in the market for space-based broadband, and the success of a specific project may depend on its ability to differentiate itself from competitors and attract customers.
  • Advantages of OneWeb broadband
  • Global Coverage: Space-based broadband systems can provide coverage to even the most remote and isolated areas of the world, which is often not possible with traditional ground-based broadband systems.
  • Bridging the Digital Divide: Cost-effective, high-speed broadband connectivity to remote and underserved areas that currently lack dependable Internet access will aid in closing the digital divide.
  • High Speeds: Space-based broadband systems can provide users with high-speed Internet connectivity, which is essential for a variety of applications, including video conferencing, cloud services, and real-time data transfer.
  • Disaster Response: The system can be quickly deployed to provide emergency communication services in the aftermath of natural disasters, such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and floods thus helping to save lives and coordinate relief efforts more effectively.
  • Low Latency:Space-based systems can significantly reduce latency compared to traditional satellite-based systems, which can make a significant difference in many applications, such as online gaming and virtual reality.
  • IoT and Machine-to-Machine Communication: It can support the growing number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices and enable machine-to-machine communication, which is becoming increasingly important in industries such as agriculture, transportation, and logistics.
  • Redundancy: It can provide a redundant connection to users in areas where traditional broadband systems are unavailable, which is critical in emergency situations.
  • Improved Connectivity for Air and Sea Travel: A space-based broadband network with low latency and high speed can improve connectivity for air and sea travel, allowing passengers to remain connected throughout their journey and enhancing the safety of ships and planes.
  • Scalability: Space-based broadband systems can be easily scaled to meet rising demand, which is essential in areas experiencing rapid population growth or sudden demand spikes due to emergencies or natural disasters.
Major space-based broadband projects

· Starlink: SpaceX has launched a satellite-based broadband service. It aims to provide low-latency, high-speed internet to users worldwide.

· Amazon Kuiper: Amazon announced this satellite-based broadband service in 2019. Its purpose is to provide internet access to unserved and underserved communities worldwide.

· Telesat: It is a Canadian satellite company that is planning to launch a constellation of low-earth orbit satellites to provide broadband internet services to customers around the world.

LeoSat: This satellite-based broadband service aims to provide high-speed, low-cost Internet access.



  • The OneWeb broadband system has the potential to revolutionise the way we connect and communicate and make the internet’s benefits available to everyone, regardless of where they live or work.
  • Space-based broadband systems, such as OneWeb, offer a promising solution for providing high-speed and dependable internet connectivity to users worldwide, particularly in remote and isolated regions.

Source: TH

Plan for Great Indian Bustard Conservation

GS 3 Species in News

In Context

  • The Environment Ministry has implemented numerous conservation and protection measures for Great Indian Bustards.

Some important steps in this regard are as follows

  • Schedule I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act of 1972 includes the Great Indian Bustard.
  • Significant Great Indian Bustard habitats are designated as national parks or sanctuaries.
  • Conservation efforts for this species have been identified under the ‘Species Recovery Programme’ component of the Centrally Sponsored Scheme- Development of Wildlife Habitats.
  • In consultation with the Forest Departments of Rajasthan and Gujarat, sites for conservation breeding centres for the Great Indian Bustard and the Lesser Florican have been identified.
  • Proposal for In-situ Conservation by the government of Rajasthan.

Great Indian Bustards

  • About:
  • One of the heaviest flying birds native to the subcontinent of India.
  • State Bird of Rajasthan.
  • Scientific Name: Ardeotis nigriceps
  • Habitat:
  • Untamed, Arid grasslands.
  • The greatest number of GIBs were discovered in Jaisalmer and the Indian Army-controlled firing range near Pokhran, Rajasthan.

Other areas: Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.

  • Protection Status:
  • IUCN Status: Critically Endangered.
  • Listed on Schedule 1 of the Wildlife Protection Act.


Threats to the Bird:

  • Hunting, agricultural intensification, and power lines.



  • Project Big Indian Bustard (State of Rajasthan)
  • Habitat Enhancement and Conservation Breeding

Source: PIB

Release of India’s First Bauxite CRM by NALCO-BARC


In News

  • National Aluminium Company Limited (NALCO), a Navratna CPSE under the Ministry of Mines and the country’s largest producer and exporter of alumina and aluminium, has successfully developed a Bauxite Certified Reference Material (CRM) dubbed BARC B1201 in collaboration with Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC).
  • This is the first CRM of this type in India and the fifth in the world.

What is Bauxite Certified Reference Material (CRM)?

  • CRMs are metal blocks accompanied by certificates detailing the elemental concentrations and uncertainty levels of their constituent elements.
  • In routine bauxite analysis, CRMs are used as calibration standards for analytical methods, instrument performance evaluation, and data quality control.
  • The CRM was certified for nine property values traceable to the international system of units: Al2O3, Fe2O3, SiO2, TiO2, V2O5, MnO, Cr2O3, MgO, and LOI.


  • The accomplishment will motivate researchers to continue innovating and will enhance the cherished vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat and the Make in India initiative.

Source: PIB

EST (Early Set-Off Time)

GS 3 Science & Technology

In News

  • Recently, Lebanon experienced widespread Confusion as a result of its government’s decision to delay DST by one month.


  • Daylight Saving Time (DST) is the practise of advancing the clock as the weather grows warmer and resetting it as the temperature drops.
  • Over 70 countries observe daylight saving time on various dates.
  • India does not observe daylight saving time; countries near the Equator do not experience significant seasonal variations in daylight hours.
  • However, residents of the North East have demanded a separate time zone to compensate for the loss of daylight hours caused by India’s length.
  • Effectiveness in Modern world
  • When DST was implemented, more daylight meant less expensive artificial lighting use. However, modern society uses so many energy-consuming appliances throughout the day that the amount of energy saved is negligible.
  • Daylight saving time also disrupts the circadian rhythm of the body, which reduces workforce productivity.