Compact radars to boost weather forecasting in Uttarakhand
State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) is planning to install compact radars and more automatic weather stations (AWS) along the Char Dham yatra route to boost the weather forecasting network in the hills of Uttarakhand.
At present, two x-band doppler radars, installed by IMD, are functional at Mukteshwar and Surkanda, while a third one has been proposed at Lansdowne and is expected to be functional next year.
Turkey’s latest ‘disinformation’ law
The new law means those found guilty of intentionally publishing disinformation or “fake news” that the authorities claim spreads panic, endangers security forces or the overall health of Turkish society could be sentenced to up to three years in prison. The bill also specifies that sentences can be increased by up to half if anonymous accounts are used to spread alleged disinformation.
Turkey currently ranks 149 out of 180 countries on Reporters Without Borders world press freedom index for 2022, and campaigners fear these additional restrictions will affect the media’s ability to accurately cover Turkey’s forthcoming election, expected in or before June.
415 million exited poverty in India in 15 years: UNDP
As many as 415 million people exited multidimensional poverty in India in 15 years (2005/06 to 2019/21) with the incidence of poverty showing a steep decline from 55.1% to 16.4%, states the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2022. The United Nations Development Programme while citing this to be a “tremendous gain and a historic change” also highlights in the report the challenges as India continues to have the largest number of poor people worldwide at 228.9 million in 2020.
The report states that across states and UTs the fastest poverty reduction in relative terms was in Goa, followed by Jammu & Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan.
The report also shows that West Bengal is the only state of the 10 poorest states in 2015/16 to move out of this category in 2019/2021. The rest- Bihar, Jharkhand, Meghalaya, MP, UP, Assam, Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan-remain among the 10 poorest. However, Bihar, the poorest state in 2015/16, saw the fastest reduction in MPI value in absolute terms. The incidence of poverty in Bihar fell from 77.4% in 2005/06 to 52.4% in 2015/16 and further down to 34.7% in 2019/21. Deprivations in sanitation, cooking fuel, and housing declined the most from 2015/16 to 2019/21.
National Credit Framework
The Ministry of Education recently unveiled a draft ‘National Credit Framework’ (NCrF) which aims to bring the entire education system, from school to university, into the academic ‘credit’ regime and has sought public view.
According to the framework, an academic year will be defined by the number of hours a student puts in. Credits will be provided to them accordingly at the end of each academic year.
The framework has been formulated under the University Grants Commission (Establishment and Operation of Academic Bank of Credits in Higher Education) Regulations, notified in July 2021.
The report of the high-level committee on the NCrF, put out in public domain, proposes credit levels from class 5 onward itself – which will be credit level 1, going up to credit level 7 and 8 with post-graduation and a doctorate, respectively.
Isro to launch 36 satellites in maiden commercial flight
The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) is all set to make its maiden commercial launch of 36 broadband communication satellites on-board the space agency’s heaviest rocket Launch Vehicle LVM3-M2.
The LVM3-M2 is dubbed as one of the heaviest for its ability to carry satellites weighing up to 8,000 kgs.
The mission is being undertaken as part of the commercial arrangement between NewSpace India Ltd and United Kingdom-based Network Access Associates Ltd (OneWeb Ltd).
The LVM3-M2 mission would give a boost to the space agency’s commercial efforts and mark its entry into the global commercial launch service market.
NewSpace India Ltd, as part of its extended mandate, has at least six commercial missions planned in the next few months, including two GSLV-Mk3 (both for OneWeb) and three PSLV launch missions, and one dedicated satellite mission.
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