News: Nepal has released a new map showing Kalapani, Limpiyadhura and Lipulekh areas as part of its territory. However, India has termed it as artificial enlargement of Nepal territorial claims that will not be accepted.
India-Nepal Border Disputes:
- Kalapani is located at an altitude of 3600m on the Kailash Mansarovar route.It borders Uttarakhand in India and Sudurpaschim Pradesh in Nepal.
- Since the Indo-China war of 1962, Kalapani has been controlled by India’s Indo-Tibetan Border Police.
- Origin of Dispute: The 1816 Treaty of Sagauli signed between British India and Nepal defined river Mahakali as the western border of Nepal.
- However, discrepancy in locating the source of the Mahakali river led to boundary disputes between India and Nepal with each country producing maps supporting their own claims.
- India claims that the river begins in Kalapani as this is where all its tributaries merge.
- On the other hand, Nepal claims not only the Kalapani region but also Limpiyadhura and Lipulekh as parts of its territory.All three areas are to the east of the river Kali.
Susta Territorial Dispute:
- The Treaty of Sagauli defined Gandak as the international boundary between India and Nepal.
- When the treaty was signed, Susta was on the right bank of the river Gandak which falls in Nepal territorial control.
- But, in due course of time, the river has changed its course and Susta now falls on the left bank of the Gandak which is controlled by India.
News: The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs(MOHUA) has announced the results of the Star Rating of Garbage Free Cities for the assessment year 2019-2020.
- The Star Rating Protocol was launched by the Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs(MOHUA) in 2018.
- Aim: To institutionalize a mechanism for cities to achieve Garbage Free status and to motivate cities to achieve higher degrees of sustainable cleanliness.
- It is one of the various initiatives which intends to make Swachh Bharat Mission-Urban(SBM-U) as a successful project.
- Parameters: It is based on 25 key parameters across the solid waste management spectrum which follow a SMART framework – Single metric, Measurable, Achievable, Rigorous verification mechanism and Targeted towards outcomes.
- It is supported by self-assessment and self-verification for achieving a certain star rating.
- It also involves citizen groups for a transparent system of self-declaration.
- This self-declaration will be verified through an independent third-party agency appointed by MoHUA for 1-star, 3-star, 5-star and 7-star garbage free ratings.
- Key Takeaways:
- A total of six cities have been certified as 5-Star, 65 cities as 3-Star and 70 cities as 1-Star.
- The 5-Star cities include Ambikapur (Chattisgarh), Surat and Rajkot (Gujarat), Indore (Madhya Pradesh) and Navi Mumbai (Maharashtra).
News: A new prey and predator estimation in Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve (TATR) in Maharashtra has found the presence of 115 tigers and 151 leopards.
- Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve is located in Chandrapur district in Maharashtra.
- The reserve includes the Tadoba National Park and the Andhari Wildlife Sanctuary.
- It is Maharashtra’s oldest and largest national park.It was established as the second Tiger Reserve in Maharashtra in 1994-95.
- Vegetation: Southern Tropical Dry Deciduous Teak Forests.
News: Union Human Resource Development Minister has launched an Artificial Intelligence powered mobile app named – the ‘National Test Abhyas’.
- The application has been developed by the National Testing Agency (NTA).
- Purpose: To enable candidates to take mock tests for upcoming exams such as JEE Main, NEET under the NTA’s purview.
- National Testing Agency (NTA): It has been established in 2017 as an autonomous self-sustained testing organization to conduct entrance examinations for admission/fellowship in higher educational institutions.
- Artificial Intelligence: It refers to the ability of machines to perform cognitive tasks like thinking, perceiving, learning, problem-solving and decision making. (NITI Aayog).
News: Chhattisgarh Government is set to launch the Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana.
- Aim:To encourage farmers for increasing crop production in the state and provide them the right price for their produce.
- Crops covered: The scheme covers rice, maize and sugarcane farmers to begin with and would expand to other crops later.
- Income Support: Rice and maize farmers would get Rs.10,000 an acre while sugarcane farmers would get Rs.13,000.The money would be distributed in four instalments.
News: Union Cabinet approved for the implementation of the Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana(PMMSY).
- Aim: To bring about a Blue Revolution through sustainable and responsible development of the fisheries sector in India.
- Augmenting fish production and productivity at a sustained average annual growth rate of about 9% to achieve a target of 22 million metric tons by 2024-25.
- Creation of direct gainful employment opportunities to about 15 lakh fishers, fish farmers, fish workers, fish vendors etc.
- Doubling of fishers, fish farmers and fish workers incomes by 2024.
- Duration: 5 years from FY 2020-21 to FY 2024-25.
- Nodal Ministry: Department of Fisheries, Ministry of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries.
- Components: The scheme has two components — Central Sector Scheme(CS) and Centrally Sponsored Scheme(CSS).
News: The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change(MoEFCC) has given environmental clearance to Oil India to drill in Dibru-Saikhowa National Park from outside.
- Dibru-Saikhowa is a National Park as well as a Biosphere Reserve situated in Assam.
- The park is bounded by the Brahmaputra and Lohit Rivers in the north and Dibru river in the south.
- Vegetation: Moist mixed semi-evergreen forests, moist mixed deciduous forests, canebrakes and grasslands.It is also the largest salix swamp forest in north-eastern India.
News: Union Cabinet has approved additional funding of up to Rs.3 lakh crore through introduction of Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme(ECLGS) for MSMEs.
- Aim: To mitigate the economic distress being faced by about 45 lakh MSMEs by providing them additional funding of up to Rs 3 lakh crore in the form of a fully guaranteed emergency credit line.
- Eligibility: All MSME borrower accounts with outstanding credit of up to Rs.25 crore as on 29th February,2020 and with annual turnover of up to Rs.100 crore would be eligible for the scheme.They can get up to 20% fresh loans of their entire outstanding credit.
- Guarantee: National Credit Guarantee Trustee Company (NCGTC) will provide 100% guarantee against losses on loans advanced to eligible MSMEs and MUDRA borrowers.
- Duration: The loan will be provided for four years with a moratorium of one year on the principal amount.
- Interest Rates: The Interest rates under the Scheme are capped at 9.25% for banks and financial institutions and at 14% for non-banking financial companies(NBFCs).
National Credit Guarantee Trustee Company(NCGTC):
- It was set up in 2014 by the Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance under the Indian Companies Act,1956.
- Purpose: To act as a common trustee company to manage and operate various credit guarantee trust funds.