Factly articles for 21st August 2020

13 min read

1.Union Minister e-launches tertiary processing centres of Trifood Project

News: Union Tribal Affairs Minister has e-launched the tertiary processing centre of  “Trifood Project”.

Facts:

  • Trifood Project: It is an initiative of the Ministry of Tribal Affairs in association with the Ministry of Food Processing(MoFPI).
    • Aim: To enhance the income of tribals through better utilization of and value addition to the Minor Forest Produce(MFP) collected by the tribal forest gatherers.
    • Implementation: It is being implemented by Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India(TRIFED).

Additional Facts:

  • Minor Forest Produce(MFP): The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers Act,2006 defines minor forest produce as all non-timber forest produce of plant origin.It includes bamboo, brushwood, stumps, canes, cocoon, honey, waxes, Lac, tendu leaves, medicinal plants, roots among others.
  • TRIFED: It was established in 1987 to provide a good price to the products made or collected from the forest by the tribal people.It functions under the administrative control of the Ministry of Tribal affairs.

2.Swachh Survekshan 2020

News: Union Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs has released the results of Swachh Survekshan 2020.

Facts:

  • Swachh Survekshan: It is an annual cleanliness survey of urban India conducted by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs under the aegis of Swachh Bharat Mission- Urban(SBM-U).
  • Objectives: a) To encourage large scale citizen participation and create awareness about cleanliness b) inculcate a spirit of healthy competition among cities and towns towards creating cleaner cities/towns.

Key Takeaways:

  • India’s Cleanest cities: Indore(MP) followed by Surat(Gujarat) and Navi Mumbai(Maharashtra).
  • Best States: Chhattisgarh was the best-performing state with over 100 ULBs.On the other hand, Jharkhand was the best performing state with less than 100 ULBs.
  • Ganga Towns: Varanasi has been awarded the cleanest town award along the banks of river Ganga.
  • Cleanest Capital city: New Delhi has been awarded as the cleanest capital city in the country.
  • Cantonment Board: Jalandhar Cantonment Board was conferred the cleanest cantonment board in the country.

Additional Facts:

  • Swachh Survekshan 2021: The 2021 survey will focus on parameters pertaining to wastewater treatment, reuse along with faecal sludge. legacy of waste management, remediation of landfills among others.
  • Prerak Daaur Samman: It is a new category of awards which will be announced as part of Swachh Survekshan 2021.
    • The award has a total of five additional sub- categories -Divya (Platinum), Anupam (Gold), Ujjwal (Silver), Udit (Bronze), Aarohi (Aspiring) – with top three cities being recognized in each.

3.National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19

News: Government of India has set up a National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19.

Facts:

  • Purpose of the group: To keep India in the forefront of any ongoing effort worldwide to innovate, prepare, produce and launch candidate vaccines to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic for India and for the world.
  • Composition: The group is chaired by Dr V K Paul, Member Niti Aayog along with Secretary (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) as co-Chair.

4.Private firms employ more women in R&D: Study

News: The Science and Technology Indicators (STI), 2018 has been released.

Facts:

  • STI: It is prepared by National Science and Technology Management Information System, a division of the Department of Science Technology,
    • The report is based on data provided by a range of scientific establishments across the country.

Key Takeaways:

  • India’s private sector research companies appear to employ a larger proportion of women in core research and development activities than government-funded major scientific agencies.

Additional Facts:

  • Vigyan Jyoti: It is an initiative of the Ministry of Science and Technology aimed at creating a level playing field for the meritorious girls in high schools to pursue science, technology, engineering and mathematics(STEM) in higher education.
  • Gender Advancement for Transforming Institutions(GATI): It aims to develop a comprehensive charter and a framework for assessing gender inequality in STEM.
  • Knowledge Involvement in Research Advancement through Nurturing(KIRAN): It is an initiative of the Ministry of Science and Technology that aims to bring gender parity in the Science & Technology sector by inducting more women talent in the research & development domain through various programmes.

5.India, Japan, Australia to launch Supply Chain Resilience Initiative(SCRI)

News: India, Japan and Australia have begun discussions on launching a trilateral Supply Chain Resilience Initiative(SCRI) to reduce the dependency on China.

Facts:

  • SCRI: The aim of the initiative is to attract foreign direct investment to turn the Indo-Pacific region into an economic powerhouse and to build mutually complementary relationships among partner countries.
  • Significance:. The initiative is a direct response to companies that are concerned about Chinese political behaviour and disruption to the supply chain.

6.Odisha to give facelift to 11th century Lingaraj Temple

News: The Odisha government has decided to give a facelift to the 11th century Lingaraj Temple, akin to its pre-350-year structural status.

Facts:

  • Lingaraj Temple: It is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva and is one of the oldest temples in Bhubaneswar,Odisha.
  • Built by: It is believed to be built by the kings from the Somavamsi dynasty with later additions from the Ganga rulers.
  • Architecture: The temple is a classic example of Kalinga style of architecture.
  • Style: It is built in the Deula style that has four components: vimana (structure containing the sanctum), jagamohana (assembly hall), nata mandira (festival hall) and bhoga-mandapa (hall of offerings).

Additional Facts:

  • Kaḷinga architectural style: It is a style of Hindu architecture which flourished in the ancient Kalinga or present Odisha.
  • Styles: The style consists of three distinct types of temples: Rekha Deula, Pidha Deula and Khakhara Deula.
    • The former two are associated with Vishnu, Surya and Shiva temples while the third is mainly with Chamunda and Durga temples.
    • The Rekha Deula and Khakhara Deula houses the sanctum sanctorum while the Pidha Deula constitutes outer dancing and offering halls.

7.Explained: What does the govt’s move to increase bioethanol in petrol mean?

News: The government has set targets of 10% bioethanol blending of petrol by 2022 and to raise it to 20% by 2030 under the Ethanol Blended Programme (EBP).

Facts:

  • Ethanol Blended Petrol(EBP) programme: It was launched in 2003 by the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas (MoP&NG).
  • Aim: To achieve blending of Ethanol with Petrol with a view to reduce pollution, conserve foreign exchange and increase value addition in the sugar industry enabling them to clear cane price arrears of farmers.
  • Implementation: The Government is implementing the programme through Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs).

Additional Facts:

  • 1G and 2G Bioethanol: 1G bioethanol plants utilise sugarcane juice and molasses, byproducts in the production of sugar as raw material while 2G plants utilise surplus biomass and agricultural waste to produce bioethanol.
  • Pradhan Mantri JI-VAN (Jaiv Indhan- Vatavaran Anukool fasal awashesh Nivaran) Yojana: It was launched in 2019 to provide financial support to Integrated Bioethanol Projects using lignocellulosic biomass and other renewable feedstock.

8.Indo-U.S. Virtual Networks for COVID-19

News: The Indo-US Science and Technology Forum(IUSSTF) has announced the awards for Indo-U.S. Virtual Networks for COVID-19.

Facts:

  • Indo-U.S. Virtual Networks for COVID-19: It is an initiative of IUSSTF to support the efforts of leading researchers from India and the U.S to find solutions to the COVID 19 pandemic and emerging global challenges.

Additional Facts:

  • Indo-U.S. Science and Technology Forum(IUSSTF): It is an autonomous bilateral organization jointly funded by the Governments of India and the US.
    • Aim: To promote long-term scientific collaborations through partnerships amongst individual scientists, scientific institutions, and the scientific community at large.
    • Nodal Departments: The Department of Science & Technology, Governments of India and the U.S. Department of States are respective nodal departments.