Prelim Snippets 03-09-2019

1.Tibetan Democracy Day

Context: September 2 marks the anniversary of the establishment of the democratic system of the Tibetan people living in exile in India.

  • The Tibetan Government-in-Exile celebrated its 59th Democracy Day at the McLeodganj Monastery on September 2. This day marks the Anniversary of the establishment of the democratic system of the Tibetan people living in exile in India.
  • In February 1960, a little less than a year after he crossed over into India, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama outlined in Bodh Gaya, where The Buddha attained Enlightenment, a detailed programme of democratic practice for exiled Tibetans.
  • He advised them to set up an elected body with three exiled representatives each from the three provinces, and one each from the four religious’ schools of Tibetan Buddhism.
  • After elections were held, 13 elected representatives, called ‘Deputies’, were designated as the ‘Commission of Tibetan People’s Deputies’ (CTPD).
  • They took oath on September 2, 1960. Subsequently from 1975 onward, this date began to be formally observed as Tibetan Democracy Day.

2.The Interpol General Assembly

Context: India has proposed to Interpol that the General Assembly of the organization be held in New Delhi in 2022 as part of the nation’s 75th Independence Day celebrations.

About Interpol:
  • The Interpol, The International Criminal Police Organisation, or Interpol, is a 194-member intergovernmental organisation headquartered in Lyon, France.
  • It was Formed in 1923 as the International Criminal Police Commission, and started calling itself Interpol in 1956.
  • India joined the organisation in 1949, and is one of its oldest members. Interpol aims to “help police in all… (its member countries) to work together to make the world a safer place”, according to its website. It enables police forces from different countries to share and access data on crimes and criminals, and offers a “range of technical and operational support”.
  • Interpol’s declared global policing goals include countering terrorism, promoting border integrity worldwide, protection of vulnerable communities, providing a secure cyberspace for people and businesses, curbing illicit markets, supporting environment security, and promoting global integrity.
About Interpol General Assembly:
  • The General Assembly is Interpol’s supreme governing body, and comprises representatives from all its member countries.
  • The General Assembly meets annually for a session lasting approximately four days, to vote on activities and policy.
  • Each country is represented by one or more delegates at the Assembly, who are typically chiefs of law enforcement agencies.
  • The General Assembly also elects the members of the Interpol Executive Committee, the governing body which “provides guidance and direction in between sessions of the Assembly”. Major trends in crime and security threats facing the world are also discussed.

3.Hurricane Dorian

Context: Recently the Hurricane Dorian became the strongest storm in modern records to hit the north-western Bahamas (a country in the Caribbean Islands).

About Hurricane Dorian:
  • It is an extremely powerful tropical cyclone currently affecting the Bahamas and threatening the south-eastern United States.
  • It is developed from a tropical wave in the Central Atlantic.
  • It is Categorised as a Category 5 storm on Saffir–Simpson hurricane wind scale (SSHWS) with maximum sustained winds of 285 km per hour.
About Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale (SSHWS):
  • The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale is a 1 to 5 rating based on a hurricane’s sustained wind speed. This scale estimates potential property damage.
  • Hurricanes reaching Category 3 and higher are considered major hurricanes because of their potential for significant loss of life and damage.
  • To be classified as a hurricane, a tropical cyclone must have one-minute maximum sustained winds of at least 74 mph (33 m/s; 64 kn; 119 km/h) (Category 1).
  • The highest classification in the scale, Category 5, consists of storms with sustained winds over 156 mph (70 m/s; 136 kn; 251 km/h).
  • Hurricanes reaching Category 3 and higher are considered major hurricanes because of their potential for significant loss of life and damage. 

4.ASEAN-US Maritime Exercise (AUMX)

Context: Eight warships, four aircraft and more than 1,000 personnel from the United States and 10 Southeast Asian countries will join for the First ASEAN-US Maritime Exercise (AUMX).

About AUMX:
  • AUMX is a maritime exercise between the regional bloc and Washington which lasts for five days, starting at the Sattahip Naval Base in Thailand and ending in Singapore.
  • All ten members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations will take part in the exercises which include the boarding of target vessels to simulate search and seizure.

5.Mini Kaziranga

Context: About 70 hatchlings of the rare Black Softshell and Indian Softshell turtles bred in the ponds of two temples in Assam were released by in the Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary, Assam.

About Mini Kaziranga:
  • Because of similar landscape and a sizeable population of the one-horned rhino Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary is often called as the ‘Mini Kaziranga’
  • Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary is mainly famous for its great Indian one-horned rhinoceros. Besides rhinoceros, the other animals are leopard, wild boar, Barking deer, wild buffalo.
  • Assam’s Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary is also home to more than 2000 migratory birds and various reptiles. It is also an Important Bird Area.

6.Terracotta Grinder

Context: Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) launched a first ever ‘Terracotta Grinder’ at Sewapuri in Varanasi to reuse broken, waste pottery.

  • This machine can be used to grind wasted and broken pottery items for re-use in pottery-making.
  • The wasted pottery items were earlier ground in normal Khal-musal (mortar and pestle) and its fine powder was mixed with the normal clay. Mixing this powder in stipulated ratio to normal clay makes the resulting pottery items stronger.
  • This Terracotta grinder will make grinding of wasted pottery items faster than the traditional mortar and pestle. It will lessen the cost of production, and will also help in solving the problem of shortage of clays.

7.India’s longest electrified railway tunnel between Cherlopalli and Rapuru (AP)

Context: Vice President inaugurated the country’s longest electrified rail tunnel between Cherlopalli and Rapuru and the electrified railway line between Venkatachalam and Obulavaripalli.

  • The 6.7-km-long tunnel is an “engineering marvel” and said it would provide viable rail connectivity between the Krishnapatnam Port and the hinterland for the seamless movement of freight.
  • It also reduces the distance for trains coming from Guntakal Division to Krishnapatnam by 72 km and eases traffic density in the Obulavaripalli-Renigunta-Gudur section.
  • This newly commissioned line of 112 km reduces the travel time to five hours as compared to the 10 hrs earlier for a goods train from Krishnapatnam Port to Obulavaripalli.
  • Besides facilitating operation of freight trains, the new line would also provide the shortest path on the Chennai-Howrah and Chennai-Mumbai rail routes.
  • It would also ease congestion of both passenger and freight-carrying trains in the Vijayawada-Gudur-Renigunta-Guntakal sections.
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