1. Hypersonic Test Demonstration Vehicle

The issue in news

DRDO successfully flight-tested the indigenously-developed hypersonic technology demonstration vehicle (HSTDV).

Main points

  • With this test, India joins a select group of countries (like China, Russia, USA) having the capability to develop the next-generation hypersonic cruise missiles.
  • The HSTDV, based on hypersonic propulsion technologies and developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), will help India develop futuristic space assets like long-range missile systems and aerial platforms.
  • The HSTDV is capable of powering missiles to attain a speed of around Mach 6 or six times the speed of sound.
  • The successful test implies that the DRDO will have the capacity to develop a hypersonic missile with a scramjet engine in the next five years, which will have the capacity to travel at more than two kilometres per second.
  • The HSTDV operates on a scramjet engine, as against the ramjet engine which is used on most missiles.
  • The ramjet engines operate at supersonic speeds of up to Mach 3.
  • The DRDO conducted the test at the APJ Abdul Kalam testing range (Wheeler Island) in Balasore, Odisha.
  • The HSTDV performed on all parameters, including combustion chamber pressure, air intake and control guidance.
  • The HSTDV is an unmanned scramjet demonstration aircraft for hypersonic speed flight. Besides its utility for long-range cruise missiles of the future, the technology has multiple civilian applications also.
  • It can be used for launching satellites at a low cost too.


  1. World Solar Technology Summit (WSTS)

The issue in news

World Solar Technology Summit (WSTS) is being organised by the International Solar Alliance (ISA).

About the WSTS:

  • The virtual summit will focus on accelerating affordable and sustainable clean green energy by showcasing and deliberating on the innovative state of the art next-generation technologies in solar power.
  • More than 26000 participants from 149 nations are expected to attend the summit.
  • Many ISA countries’ ministers will join high-level dignitaries, representatives of diplomatic missions, ISA Partners, business and industry leaders, solar project developers, solar manufacturers, R&D institutions, academia and think tanks, civil society, international organizations and donors, representatives of non-governmental and community-based organizations, research and training institutes, international media, multilateral and bilateral agencies.
  • The summit will include many deliberations on low cost, innovative and affordable solar technologies.
  • ISA would also be launching the ISA Journal on Solar Energy that would help authors from across the globe to publish their articles on solar energy, during the event.
  • The keynote of the summit will be delivered by Nobel laureate, Dr M Stanley Whittingham.
  • He had won the 2019 Nobel Prize for Chemistry along with two others for the discovery of the lithium-ion batteries.



  1. Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (Global MPI)

The issue in news

NITI Aayog, as the nodal agency, has been assigned the responsibility of leveraging the monitoring mechanism of the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) to drive reforms.

Main points:

  • The NITI Aayog will leverage the monitoring mechanism of the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) to push forward reforms in the country and for this, it has also set up a coordination committee, called the Multidimensional Poverty Index Coordination Committee (MPICC).
  • The NITI Aayog is the nodal agency for Global MPI.
  • The MPICC has members from relevant line Ministries and Departments, namely Ministry/Department of Power, WCD, Telecommunication, Statistics and Programme Implementation, Rural Development, Petroleum & Natural Gas, Food & Public Distribution, Drinking Water & Sanitation, Education, Housing & Urban Affairs, Health & Family Welfare, and Financial Services.
  • These Ministries/ Departments have been mapped to the ten parameters of the index (mentioned below).
  • Preparation of an MPI Parameter Dashboard to rank States and UTs, and a State Reform Action Plan (SRAP) are at an advanced stage of development.
  • The MPI is one of the 29 global indices that the government has selected to monitor India’s performance in.
  • This exercise called the Global Indices to Drive Reforms and Growth (GIRG), has the objective of enabling the utilisation of these indices as tools for self-improvement, bring about reforms in policies, while also improving last-mile implementation of government schemes.

About Global MPI:

  • Global MPI is an international measure of multidimensional poverty covering 107 developing countries.
  • It was first developed in 2010 by Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for UNDP’s Human Development Reports.
  • The index is released at the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development of the United Nations in July every year.

How is the index calculated?

  • It is calculated by assigning scores for each surveyed household on 10 parameters.
  • These are based on nutrition, child mortality, years of schooling, school attendance, cooking fuel, sanitation, drinking water, electricity, housing, and household assets.
  • The index complements traditional monetary poverty measures by capturing the acute deprivations in health, education, and living standards that a person faces simultaneously.
  • In Global MPI 2020, India was 62nd among 107 countries with an MPI score of 0.123 and 27.91% headcount ratio, based on the NFHS-4 (2015-16) data.


  1. Indira Gandhi Peace Prize 2019

The issue in news

Indira Gandhi Peace Prize for 2019  has been conferred to Sir David Attenborough in  a virtual ceremony.

Main points

  • It is a Prize given for Peace, Disarmament and Development, It is conferred every year by Indira Gandhi Memorial Trust since
  • a citation and a award of 25 lakh is given .

David Attenborough

  • He is a natural historian and an English broadcaster and.
  • He worked to create awareness regarding the need to- preserve and protect biodiversity of the planet


  1. Yanomami Tribe of South America

The issue in news

  • Amid the coronavirus pandemic, The Yanomami tribe has stood against 20,000 gold miners in  their land and have launched a global campaign to expel them.

Main points

  • They live in southern Venezuela , mountains of northern Brazil and rainforests . they are relatively the largest isolated tribe in South America.
  • They do not have a chief and consider all people to be equal. Debates and discussions are held to take All the decisions through consensus
  • They speak Xirianá language.

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