Ojaank IAS Academy




12 November 2022 – Current Affairs

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Rajiv Gandhi Assassination Case

Paper 2 – Polity

Why You Should Know?

The Supreme Court on November 11, 2022 ordered the premature release of all six remaining convicts – including Nalini Sriharan – who were serving life sentences in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case.
In detail –
  • Convicts R P Ravichandran, Santhan, Murugan, Robert Payas and Jayakumar were also ordered to be released. The bench in its order took note of the case of A G Perarivalan, the seventh convict, who was released in May.
  • Former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated on the night of May 21, 1991, at Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu by a woman suicide bomber identified as Dhanu, at a poll rally.
  • A bench of Justices B R Gavai and B V Nagarathna said the May 2022 judgment of the top court in the case of A G Perarivalan was applicable here as well.
  • Invoking its extraordinary power under Article 142 of the Constitution, the top court had on May 18 ordered his release after he served over 30 years in jail.
Base for the Release
  • The TADA or Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act trial court had initially sentenced 26 people to death in the case.
  • In 1999, a few years after the TADA Act was allowed to lapse, the Supreme Court upheld the conviction of only seven people, releasing all others.
  • The SC order observed none of those convicted was part of the nucleus of the assassination team.
  • Of the seven convicts serving life terms in the case, in 1999, the Supreme Court sentenced four of them to death and the other three to life imprisonment.
  • In 2000, the death sentence of one, Nalini, was commuted to life. In 2014, the Supreme Court commuted the remaining three death sentences, including that of Perarivalan.
  • While hearing convict A G Perarivalan’s plea on the delay in deciding his plea for remission, the SC had said in September 2018 that the Tamil Nadu Governor had the right to decide on his petition.
  • Within days, the Tamil Nadu Cabinet, headed by then chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, had recommended the release of all seven convicts. But Raj Bhavan chose to sit on it.
  • On January 22, 2021, the Centre told the Supreme Court that the Tamil Nadu Governor was set to take a call on the release.
  • Then, on January 25, the Governor’s office left it to President Ram Nath Kovind to take a decision on the pardon of all these convicts.
  • The Centre told the court “the proposal received by the central government will be processed in accordance with the law”.
  • But in May this year, Perarivalan was “set at liberty forthwith” by the Supreme Court, which used its extraordinary powers “for doing complete justice” under Article 142 of the Constitution.
Article 142
  • Subsection 1 of Article 142 (“Enforcement of decrees and orders of Supreme Court and orders as to discovery, etc.”) says “the Supreme Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction may pass such decree or make such order as is necessary for doing complete justice in any cause or matter pending before it,
  • and any decree so passed or order so made shall be enforceable throughout the territory of India in such manner as may be prescribed by or under any law made by Parliament and, until provision in that behalf is so made, in such manner as the President may by order prescribe.”
  • Essentially, this provision of the Constitution gives the country’s top court-wide powers to do “complete justice” in a case.

Sources – IE

Delay in appointment of Judges

Paper 2 – Polity

Why You Should Know?

In detail –
  • The Supreme Court said that the government is using silence and inaction as “some kind of a tool” to force deserving candidates and prominent lawyers to withdraw their consent.
  • “The government neither appoints the persons and nor communicates its reservation, if any, on the names… Keeping the names pending is something not acceptable,” a Bench led by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul observed.
  • The court issued notice to the Justice Secretary and Additional Secretary (Administration and Appointment) and listed the case for November 28.
  • The scathing five-page order comes even as the past few days have seen Law Minister Kiren Rijiju launch a relentless attack on the collegium system for lack of transparency.
  • But, in its order, the Bench said there were enough “checks and balances” in the current collegium system of judicial appointments.
  • “In the elaborate procedure from taking inputs from the government post recommendation from the collegium of the High Court, the Supreme Court collegium bestowing consideration on the names, there are enough checks and balances,” the order said.
  • But the government’s tendency to inexplicably withhold names for months on end, without even an explanation, would see rule of law and justice suffer.
  • The Bench said it had last year framed a broad timeline by which judicial appointments could start six months prior to vacancies. “This was conceived on a principle that the time period would be enough to process the names with the government,” the court said.
  • However, hardly anything has changed on the ground. The court said 11 names for judicial appointments cleared by the Supreme Court collegium were still pending with the government.
  • “The oldest of them is of vintage September 4, 2021 as the date of dispatch and the last two on September 13, 2022,” the court underscored.
  • It said 10 other names reiterated by the collegium for appointment have been pending with the government, starting from September 4, 2021 to July 18, 2022.
  • In one case, the government has not budged though the collegium had reiterated the name thrice. In another, the candidate had withdrawn after a second reiteration from the collegium drew no response from the government.
  • In yet another case, the candidate, Jaytosh Majumdar, whose appointment had been pending since September 2021, passed away recently.
  • The order recorded that it has already been five weeks since the collegium had recommended the name of Bombay High Court Chief Justice Dipankar Datta for elevation to the Supreme Court.
  • The Supreme Court itself has seven judicial vacancies out of a sanctioned strength of 34 judges. As of November 1, the judicial vacancies in 25 High Courts number 335 out of a total sanctioned strength of 1,108 judges.
What is collegium system?
  • There is no provision in the Constitution regarding the process of appointment of judges in the High Courts and the Supreme Court.
  • Therefore, this work was initially done by the government at its discretion.
  • But in the 1990s , the Supreme Court started intervening in the matter and gave legal arrangements one after the other.
  • In the light of these arrangements, a new system of appointment gradually emerged, under which the concept of collegium for appointment of judges came to the fore.
  • The Chief Justice of India and the senior-most judge of the Supreme Court are members of the collegium.
  • It is this collegium that selects the names for the appointment of high court and supreme court judges and then sends its recommendation to the government. The government takes action for appointment of judges by these names.
  • Significantly, the recommendation of the collegium is not binding on the President. If the President rejects a recommendation, it goes back to the collegium. 
  • But if the Collegium reiterates its recommendation and sends it back to the President, the President has to accept that recommendation.
Procedure of the Collegium –
  • The collegium, on its part, sends recommendations to the central government on the names of lawyers and judges. Similarly, the central government, on its part, proposes some names to the collegium.
  • The names sent by the collegium are factually examined by the central government and then the relevant file is returned to the collegium.
  • The Collegium then considers the names and suggestions sent by the Central Government and then resends the file to the Government for final approval.
  • When the Collegium sends the same name again, the Government has to approve that name. But there is no time frame for when the Government will give its approval now.  That is why it takes a long time to appoint judges.
Efforts to change the collegium system
  • The collegium system has been the centre of criticism for several reasons. Therefore, the government wants it to be removed and a system that does not have autocracy and opacity like the collegium system.  In this context
  • Parliament had passed a law in 2015 relating to the establishment of the National Judicial Appointments Commission, but  on October 16, 2015, the Supreme Court had dismissed the resolution by majority, saying it was unconstitutional and would hurt the independence of the judiciary.
  • The court said that the proposed amendments would damage the independence of the judiciary and judicial appointments should be kept away from the control of the executive.

Source – TH

ASEAN-India Friendship year

Paper 2 – International Relations

Why You Should Know?

The year 2022 has been declared as the ASEAN-India Friendship year, as ASEAN and India commemorate 30 years of partnership.
In detail –
  • A series of events has been planned to celebrate the occasion throughout the year.
  • As a part of this programme, Indian media delegation is on a visit to Singapore and Cambodia under the ASEAN-INDIA Media exchange programme from 8th November to 13th November.
  • On the first leg of the visit the delegation visited the Singapore-India Chambers of Commerce and Industries (SICCI) and had an exchange of thoughts on topics such as India-Singapore relations with a specific focus on business-friendly policies and the expectations of business community in Singapore from India.
  • The delegation also called on the Indian High Commissioner to Singapore Mr. P. Kumaran and got a detailed understanding about how the strategic partnership between India and Singapore has shown its resilience and both sides look forward to further strengthening this important relationship.
  • The delegation interacted with the officials of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Communication & Information of Singapore to understand the media landscape in Singapore and the kind of challenges Singapore goverenment faces in timely communicating the correct perspective of people friendly policies to their citizens. After the first leg of visit, the delegation has reached Cambodia.
  • As a precursor to the visit of the Vice President of India to Cambodia for the ASEAN Summit, the delegation visited the Angkor Vat and Ta Prohm temple complexes and witnessed the prominent role played by the Government of India and the Archeological Survey of India in restoring these UNESCO World Heritage sites there.
  • Vice President would be inaugurating the newly restored portions of the Ta Prohm temple complex during the visit.
  • ASEAN stands for Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
  • It is  a political and economic union of 10 member states in Southeast Asia, which promotes intergovernmental cooperation and facilitates economic, political, security, military, educational, and sociocultural integration between its members and countries in the Asia-Pacific.
  • ASEAN was preceded by an organisation formed on 31 July 1961 called the Association of Southeast Asia (ASA), a group consisting of Thailand, the Philippines, and the Federation of Malaya.
  • ASEAN itself was created on 8 August 1967, when the foreign ministers of five countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand, signed the ASEAN Declarationin Bangkok, the capital of Thailand.
  • Later Brunei (1984), Vietnam (1995), Laos and Myanmar (1997), and Cambodia (1999) joined the member states.
  • Thus, it currently has 10 member countries – Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar and Cambodia.
  • ASEAN’s first summit meeting, held in Bali, Indonesia in 1976.
  • In 2006, ASEAN was given observer status at the United Nations General Assembly.In response, the organisation awarded the status of “dialogue partner” to the UN.
  • To accelerate economic development,  social progress and cultural development for the prosperous and peaceful community of Southeast Asian countries.
  • Promote regional peace and stability through respect for justice and the rule of law and adherence to the principles of the UN Charter.
  • Promote active cooperation and mutual assistance on matters of common interest in economic, social, cultural, technical, scientific and administrative fields.
  • To cooperate more effectively in greater use of  agriculture and industries, expansion of trade, improvement of transport and communication facilities and improvement of living standards of the people.
  • To promote Southeast Asian studies.
  • To maintain close and beneficial cooperation with existing international and regional organizations.

Sources – all India Radio

First VandeBharat Train in South India

Paper 2 –Social Justice

Why You Should Know?

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi flagged off Vande Bharat Express and Bharat Gaurav Kashi Darshan Train at KSR Railway Station, Bengaluru.

In detail –
  • The Prime Minister arrived at the flag-off area on Platform no. 7 of KranthiveeraSangolliRayanna (KSR) Railway Station and gave the green signal to Chennai-Mysuru Vande Bharat Express.
  • This will be the fifth Vande Bharat Express train in the country and the first such train in South India.
  • It will enhance connectivity between the industrial hub of Chennai, the Tech & Startup hub of Bengaluru and the famous tourist city of Mysuru.
  • This was followed by the Prime Minister arriving at the flag-off area on Platform no. 8 and giving the green signal to the Bharat Gaurav Kashi Yatra train.
  • Karnataka is the first state to take up this train under the Bharat Gaurav scheme in which the Government of Karnataka and the Ministry of Railways are working together to send pilgrims from Karnataka to Kashi.
  • The pilgrims will be provided comfortable stay and guidance for visiting Kashi, Ayodhya and Prayagraj.
About Vande Bharat Express
  • The Vande Bharat Express, also known as Train 18, is an Indian semi-high-speed, intercity, EMU trainwhich is operated by the Indian Railways only on two prominent routes as of March 2022, one from New Delhi (NDLS) to Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Katra (SVDK) and the other from New Delhi (NDLS) to Varanasi (BSB).
  • It was designed and manufactured by Integral Coach Factory (ICF) at Perambur, Chennai under the Indian government’s Make in India initiative, over a span of 18 months.
  • The train was launched on 15 February 2019,The service was named ‘Vande Bharat Express’ on 27 January 2019.
  • Vande Bharat Express is designed to be capable of running at a maximum speed of 160 kmph that can be touched in only 140 seconds for commercial purposeand it exceeded 180kmph during testing.
Vande Bharat Express 2.0
  • The Vande Bharat Express 2.0 offers a myriad of superior and aircraft-like travelling experiences.
  • It is equipped with advanced state-of-the-art safety features including an indigenously developed Train Collision Avoidance System – KAVACH.
  • Vande Bharat 2.0 will be equipped with more advancements and improved features such as reaching a speed of 0 to 100 kilometres per hour in just 52 seconds, and a maximum speed of up to 180 kilometres per hour.
  • The improved Vande Bharat Express will weigh 392 tons when compared to the previous version of 430 tons.
  • It will also have a Wi-Fi content on-demand facility. Every coach is equipped with 32” screens providing passenger information and infotainment compared to 24” in the previous version.
  • Vande Bharat Express is also going to be environmentally friendly as the ACs will be 15 per cent more energy efficient.
  • With dust-free clean air cooling of the traction motor, travel will become more comfortable.
  • The side recliner seat facility which was provided only to Executive Class passengers earlier will now be made available for all classes.
  • Executive Coaches have the added feature of 180-degree rotating seats. In the new design of Vande Bharat Express, a photo-catalytic ultraviolet air purification system is installed in the Roof-Mounted Package Unit (RMPU) for air purification. 
  • As recommended by Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO), Chandigarh, this system is designed and installed on both ends of RMPU to filter and clean the air free from germs, bacteria, viruses etc. coming through fresh air and return air.
About Bharat Gaurav Trains
  • Indian Railways launched the operation of the theme-based Bharat Gaurav train in the month of November 2021.
  • The objective of this theme is to showcase India’s rich cultural heritage and magnificent historical places to the people of India and the world, through Bharat Gaurav Trains.
  • This scheme also aims to leverage the core strengths of the professionals of the tourism sector to run theme-based trains to tap the vast tourism potential of India.

Source – TH

Green Energy Open Access portal

Paper 3 –Energy Resources

Why You Should Know?

The Union Minister for Power and New and Renewable Energy, Shri R. Of. In continuation of several initiatives of the Government of India to promote clean and green energy, Singh launched the Green Energy Open Access Portal through video conferencing.

In detail –
  • Any consumer with a connected load of 100 kW or above can get Renewable Energy through open access from any Renewable Energy generating plant set up by himself; or by any developer. The open access has to be granted within 15 days. The application for open access can be made on this portal.
  • The portal can be accessed for processing of applications related to green energy open access by the stakeholders including open access participants, traders, Power Exchanges, National / Regional / State Load DespatchCentres, Central/State transmission utilities.
  • The portal provides a transparent, simplified, uniform and streamlined procedure for granting open access to green energy that will be key to facilitating deepening of electricity markets and enabling integration of Renewable Energy (RE) resources into the grid.
  • The Nodal agencies shall post progress reports related to green energy open access to stakeholders through the portal.
  • The approval for Green Energy Open Access will be granted in 15 days or else it will be deemed to have been granted, subject to the fulfilment of technical requirements through the portal.
  • The move is aimed at ensuring affordable, reliable, sustainable, and green energy for all. The consumers can now get access to RE power easily.
What is Green Energy?
  • Green energy is such a sustainable source that is not highly harmful to both the environment and human health.
  • In fact, green energy is generated from natural renewable energy sources such as the sun, wind, water, landforms and plants.
  • Biomass, biofuels and landfill gas are also placed under green energy.
  • Wood sawdust, waste and inflammable agricultural waste are believed to produce far fewer greenhouse gas emissions than petroleum-based fuel sources.
  • Therefore, they can be used as an energy source. These materials are known as biomass, because the energy present in them is stored from the sun.
India’s goal
  • At present, India has prepared a comprehensive strategy for meaningful exploitation of green energy options in the name of renewable energy.
  • Under this, a target has been set to install 175 GW capacity by 2022.
  • Indian scientists, policy makers and environmentalists are also busy in developing new technologies and models of green energy.
  • International cooperation is being exchanged to acquire reliable and cost-effective technology in solar, wind and hydropower systems and to develop and strengthen associated facilities and capabilities.
  • To increase India’s photovoltaic capacity, there is a plan to provide 210 billion rupees (US $ 3.1 billion) government assistance to the solar panel manufacturing industry.
  • Under this plan, India is committed to generate 40 percent of the total energy from green energy by 2030.

Sources –PIB

Eat Right Station

Paper 2 – Health

Why You Should Know?

Bhopal Railway Station awarded ‘Eat Right Station’ certification with a 4-star rating by FSSAI
In detail –
What is Eat right Certificate?
  • Indian Railways’ Bhopal Railway Station has been awarded a 4- star ‘Eat Right Station’ certification for providing high-quality, nutritious food to passengers.
  • This certification is granted by FSSAI to railway stations adhering to standard food storage and hygiene practices.
  • The ‘Eat Right Station’ certification is awarded by FSSAI to railway stations that set benchmarks in providing safe and wholesome food to passengers.
  • The station is awarded a certificate upon a conclusion of an FSSAI-empanelled third-party audit agency with ratings from 1 to 5.
  • The 4-star rating indicates full compliance by the station to ensure safe and hygienic food is available to passengers.
  • The certification is part of the ‘Eat Right India’ movement- a large-scale effort by FSSAI to transform the country’s food system to ensure safe, healthy and sustainable food for all Indians.
About Eat Right India Movement
  • In the preamble to the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is expected to ensure availability of safe and wholesome food for the people in India.
  • Therefore, FSSAI has embarked on a large-scale effort to transform the country’s food system in order to ensure safe, healthy and sustainable food for all Indians through the ‘Eat Right India’ movement.
  • The tagline ‘SahiBhojan. Behtar Jeevan’, thus, forms the foundation of this movement.
  • Eat Right India adopts a judicious mix of regulatory, capacity building, collaborative and empowerment approaches to ensure that our food is good both for the people and the planet.
  • Further, it builds on the collective action of all stakeholders – the government, food businesses, civil society organizations, experts and professionals, development agencies and citizens at large.
  • Eat Right India adopts an integrative or ‘whole of the government’ approach since the movement brings together food-related mandates of the agriculture, health, environment and other ministries.
  • Furthermore, since foodborne illnesses and various diet-related diseases cut across all age groups and all sections of the society it also adopts a ‘whole of society’ approach, bringing all stakeholders together on a common platform.
  • Eat Right India is aligned to thethe National Health Policy 2017 with its focus on preventive and promotive healthcare and flagship programmes like Ayushman Bharat, POSHAN Abhiyaan, Anemia Mukt Bharat and Swacch Bharat Mission.
Other Railway stations

The other railway stations with this certification include –

  1. Anand Vihar Terminal Railway Station; (Delhi),
  2. Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus; (Mumbai),
  3. Mumbai Central Railway Station; (Mumbai),
  4. Vadodara Railway Station,
  5. Chandigarh Railway Station.

Sources – Livemint

Phase III of the GRAP

Paper 3 – Environment

Why You Should Know?

The Air Quality Index (AQI) seems to be increasing in Delhi-NCR for the last two days.The third phase of the Graded Response Action Plan will continue
In detail –
  • Wind conditions have not been very favourable and accordingly dispersion of air pollutants has not been very effective.
  • Considering the significant spike in Delhi’s overall AQI from 260 to 346 in the last two days.
  • north-westerly wind flow conducive to increase the impact of farm fires on the AQI of Delhi and the need to continue with the steps to prevent deterioration of air quality.
  • the Sub-Committee of the Commission for Air Quality Management in NCR and Adjoining Areas (CAQM) for invoking actions under the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP).
  • after comprehensively reviewing the air quality scenario and relevant aspects has taken the decision that ongoing actions implemented under Stage III of the GRAP shall continue and it should not be withdrawn at this stage.
  • The Sub-Committee is closely watching the situation and will review the air quality scenario on a regular basis.
About Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP)
  • As per the Supreme Court order regarding air quality in the National Capital Territory of Delhi, a Graded Response Action Plan has been prepared for implementation under various Air Quality Indices (AQIs).
  • The scheme was notified by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change  in the year 2017.
  • This action plan was described  in  four categories –
  • Moderate to Poor
  • Very Poor
  • Severe category
  • Severe + or emergency
When is it implemented?
  • Stage-1 of the GRAP is implemented as soon as the Air Quality Index (AQI)  falls into ‘poor’ (201  to 300).
  • Stage-2 AQI in ‘very poor’ category (301 to 400)
  • Stage-3 ‘severe’ category (401 to 450) and
  • Stage-4 is applied when it falls in the  ‘very severe’ category (above 450).
About Commission for Air Quality Management
  • The Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) was established as a statutory body by the government in August 2021.
  • The Commission has been set up for Air Quality Management in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas for better co-ordination, research, identification and resolution of problems surrounding the air quality index and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
  • The CAQM has replaced the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) which was appointed by the SC and had been active for 22 years.

Functions of the Commission include

  • co-ordinating actions taken under the Ordinance by concerned state governments (Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh).
  • planning and executing plans to prevent and control air pollution in the NCR.
  • providing a framework for identification of air pollutants.
  • conducting research and development through networking with technical institutions,
  • training and creating a special workforce to deal with issues related to air pollution, and
  • preparing various action plans such as increasing plantation and addressing stubble burning.

Sources – BS

Nadaprabhu Kempegowda

Paper 1 –History

Why Should You Know?

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi unveiled a 108-feet-long bronze statue of Sri NadaprabhuKempegowda in Bengaluru
In details –
About Kempegowda’s statue
  • The 108 feet high statue of Kempegowda in the airport complex remains the center of attraction.
  • Designed by renowned sculptor Ram VanjiSutar, who designed the statue of Sardar Patel in Gujarat.
  • The weight of the statue of Kempegowda is 218 tonnes.
  • 98 tonnes of bronze and 120 tonnes of steel have been used in the statue.
  • The weight of the sword of the statue itself is 4 tons.
  • It is being said that this is the tallest statue of the founder of a city.
Who is NadaprabhuKempegowda
  • NadaprabhuHiriya Kempe Gowda, also known as Kempe Gowda was a chieftain under the Vijayanagara Empire.
  • The city of Bengaluru, which is the capital of the Indian state of Karnataka, was fortified by Kempe Gowda in 1537.
  • He erected many Kannada inscriptions in the region. Being of Telugu origin he was also well versed with Telugu language.
  • He authored the play called Gangagourivilasam or Ganga GouriSallapamu in Telugu.
  • He is known as the most famous and educated ruler of his time.
  • According to sources, Kempegowda, a descendant of the Morasu Gowda dynasty, displayed leadership quality from his childhood when he studied in a gurukul in Aivarukandapura (Aigondapura), a village near Hesaraghatta.
  • He succeeded his father as the chief in 1513.
Social works –
  • Kempegowda also did many social works during his rule.
  • He prohibited the practice of chopping off the last two fingers of unmarried women during BandiDevaru by the people of Morasu Gowda.
  • Despite belonging to the Kannada community, he had knowledge of many other languages ​​as well.
  • But the hardships of life did not leave Kempegowda either. Due to the complaint made by his neighbor, he had to spend 5 years of his life in jail. But despite this there was no effect on his rule.
Establishment of bangalore
  • It is said that the idea of ​​making Kempegowda a town came during a hunting expedition towards Shivanasamudra.
  • According to the initial plans of Kempegowda, a fort, a cantonment, tanks, temples, etc. were to be present in the city.
  • After taking orders from the Vijayanagara ruler Achyutaraya, he built the Bangalore Fort and shifted his capital from Yelahanka to Bangalore Pete.
  • Kempegowda built the Bangalore Fort in 1537 and built a city that is still in front of us.
  • He died in 1569 after ruling for 56 years.

Sources – PIB

India’s First Hydrogen Fuel Cell Catamaran

Paper 3 – Science & Tech

Why You Should Know?

Cochin Shipyard has signed an MoU with Inland Waterways Authority of India to build the country’s first hydrogen fuel cell catamaran vessel for Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh.
In detail –
  • The Shipyard also signed another MoU for the construction of six electric catamaran vessels for Uttar Pradesh and two such vessels for Guwahati.
  • A statement issued by the Cochin Shipyard said the air-conditioned hydrogen fuel cell catamaran vessel will have a seating capacity for 100 passengers.
  • It will be deployed at Varanasi after test and trial in Kochi.
  • The air-conditioned electric hybrid vessels, designed for short-distance commute in riverine waters, will have seating capacity for 50 passengers.
  • The vessels will provide onboard accommodation for the crew, besides toilet and washroom facilities for the passengers.
  • The vessels will significantly contribute to the reduction in pollution levels in the National Waterways.

Source – all India Radio


Odia Language

Paper 1 – Art & Culture

Why Should You Know?

The President of India, SmtDroupadiMurmu, launched various projects of the Union Ministry of Education from Jayadev Bhawan, Bhubaneswar on November 11, 2022.

In detail –
  • These include engineering books of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) in Odia language; glossary of the technical terms in Odia language, developed by Commission for Scientific and Technical Terminology (CSTT); and e-KUMBH (Knowledge Unleashed in Multiple Bharatiya Languages) portal.
  • It has been observed that many students face difficulty in understanding technical education in English.
  • That is why under the National Education Policy-2020, the government has taken steps to provide technical education in the regional languages.
  • mother tongue helps intellectual development in students.
  • learning in mother tongue would develop creative thinking and analytical skills among students and it would also provide equal opportunities to urban and rural students.
  • earlier technical education in regional languages used to face hurdles due to non-availability of textbooks in vernacular languages.
  • Odia is an ancient and rich language. It has a distinct literary tradition and rich vocabulary. Therefore, there would be no difficulty in getting technical education in Odia language.
About Odia language
  • Odia is an Eastern Indo-Aryan language belonging to the Indo-Aryan language family.
  • Odia is a classical Indo-Aryan language spoken in the Indian state of Odisha.
  • It is the official language in Odisha (formerly rendered Orissa),where native speakers make up 82% of the population.
  • Odia is mainly spoken in the state of Odisha, but there are significant Odia-speaking populations in the neighbouring states, such as Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Chhattisgarh.
  • According to the 2011 census, 3.1% of Indians in India are Odia speakers,[38] of which 93% belong to Odisha.
  • Odia is one of the many official languages of India; it is the official language of Odisha and the second official language of Jharkhand.
  • The language is also spoken by a sizeable population of 700,000 people in Chhattisgarh.
  • The Odia language uses the Odia script (also known as the Kalinga script). It is a Brahmic script used to write primarily the Odia language and others like Sanskrit and several minor regional languages.
  • Odia is the sixth Indian language to be designated a Classical language, on the basis of having a long literary history and not having borrowed extensively from other languages.
Eighth Schedule to the Constitution of India
  • The Eighth Schedule to the Constitution of India lists the official languages of the Republic of India.
  • There are 22 official languages – These are (1) Assamese, (2) Bengali, (3) Gujarati, (4) Hindi, (5) Kannada, (6) Kashmiri, (7) Konkani, (8) Malayalam, (9) Manipuri, (10) Marathi, (11) Nepali, (12) Oriya, (13) Punjabi, (14), Sanskrit, (15) Sindhi, (16) Tamil, (17) Telgu, (18) Urdu (19) Bodo, (20) Santhali, (21) Maithili and (22) Dogri.
  • Of these languages, 14 were initially included in the Constitution.
  • 1950: 14 were initially included in the Constitution.
  • 1967: Sindhi was added by 21st Constitutional Amendment Act
  • 1992: Konkani, Manipuri (Meitei) and Nepali were added by 71st Constitutional Amendment Act
  • 2003: Bodo, Dogri, Maithili and Santali were added by 92nd Constitutional Amendment Act.
  • 2011: The spelling Oriya was replaced by Odia by 96th Constitutional Amendment Act.

Sources – PIB

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