- Nobel Prize (Literature): Louise Gluck
The issue in news
- American poet Louise Gluck won the 2020 Nobel Literature Prize.
- The academy said that Ms. Gluck was honoured for her unmistakable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal.
- She won the Pulitzer Prize in 1993 for her collection ‘The Wild Iris’ and the National Book Award for her latest collection, ‘Faithful and Virtuous Night’, in 2014.
- She is the fourth woman to win the Nobel Literature Prize in the past decade and only the 16th since the Nobel prizes were first awarded in 1901.
- World Bank widens GDP contraction forecast to 9.6%
The issue in news
The World Bank has released the South Asia Economic Focus report.
- The World Bank has revised its June 2020 estimates and expects India’s economy to contract by 9.6% in 2020-21.
- In June, it was estimated that the output would shrink by just 3.2% amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
- World Bank reckoned that there will be a rebound to 5.4% growth in 2021-22, but largely due to base effects and on assumptions that the pandemic-related restrictions are completely lifted by 2022.
- It said significant disruptions to jobs likely boosted the poverty rate, with 2020 rates back to levels in 2016.
- It was highlighted that despite measures to shield vulnerable households and firms, the trajectory of poverty reduction has slowed, if not reversed.
- It cautioned that while policy interventions have preserved the normal functioning of financial markets so far, the demand slowdown could lead to rising loan delinquencies and risk aversion.
- Q2 records 107% surge in fresh investments
The issue in news
Fresh investment proposals surged sharply in the second quarter of 2020-21, rising 107% over the first quarter.
- Private sector investments also recovered significantly, rising 87% from the previous quarter when an extensive lockdown triggered a 23.9% contraction in the economy.
- On a year-on-year basis, fresh investments between July and September were still 11.32% lower but marked a sharp recovery from investments in the first quarter that were nearly 73% lower.
- Invest India Conference
The issue in news
PM delivers the keynote address at Invest India Conference in Canada through video conference.
About the Invest India Conference:
- The forum aims to give the Canadian business community a first-hand perspective of the opportunities to invest in India and showcase India as an investment destination.
- The event witnessed the participation of representatives from banks and insurance firms, investment funds, companies in sectors like aviation, electronics and manufacturing, consultant firms, and universities.
- The conference was organised with a special focus on further strengthening business ties between India and Canada.
- Air Force Day
88th Air Force Day observed on 8th October 2020.
8th October is observed as the founding day of the Indian Air Force.
The air wing of the armed forces was officially established in 1932 on this date.
Indian Air Force
- The Indian Air Force or Bharatiya Vayu Sena, the air arm of the Indian armed forces came into being on 8 October 1932. It was established as an auxiliary air force of the Royal Air Force of Britain. The Indian Air Force Act 1932 removed its auxiliary status.
- On 1 April 1933, the first squadron of the Indian Air Force (IAF) ‘No. 1 Squadron’ was commissioned with four Westland Wapiti biplanes and five pilots. All the pilots were Indians and they were commanded by British RAF Commanding Officer Flight Lieutenant Cecil Bouchier who later became Air Vice Marshal. In 1943, the squadron was led by Acting Squadron Leader Arjan Singh, who later went on to become Marshal of the Indian Air Force (bestowed in 2002).
- In March 1945, acknowledging the IAF’s achievements and contributions in the Second World War, the service was honoured by the bestowal of the title ‘Royal’ on its title by British monarch King George VI. On becoming a republic in 1950, the prefix ‘Royal’ was dropped.
- During the Indo-Pakistan immediately after independence, the Royal Indian Air Force provided effective logistics support and transport to Indian troops although there was no direct air-to-air combat with the Pakistani air force.
- In 1950, the Royal Indian Air Force became the Indian Air Force.
- The IAF has played important roles in the annexation of Goa from Portugal, in UN operations worldwide, and in the various wars with Pakistan. The IAF also supported the Indian Peacekeeping Force (IPKF) in Sri Lanka.
- After the 1971 war with Pakistan, the IAF received the highest award for gallantry in India, the Param Vir Chakra which was awarded posthumously to Flying Officer Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon. For a list of the gallantry and civilian awards in India, click here.
- HAL HF-24 Marut is the first Indian developed jet aircraft to enter into service and also the first in Asia to go beyond the test phase. It is a fighter-bomber aircraft and was developed by Hindustan Aircraft Limited (HAL).
- The national Commander-in-chief of the Air Force is the President of India. The Commander of the Indian Air Force is the Chief of the Air Staff with the rank of air chief marshal. The present chief is Air Chief Marshall Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria.
- At present, there are approximately 12,550 officers and 139,576 enlisted personnel in the IAF.
- Apart from the National Defence Academy, other training institutes for air force personnel include the Air Force Academy, Dundigul; the Pilot Training Establishment at Allahabad; the Institute of Aerospace Medicine at Bangalore; the Air Force Administrative College at Coimbatore; the Air Force Technical College, Bangalore; the Paratrooper’s Training School at Agra and the Tactics and Air Combat and Defence Establishment at Gwalior.
- The IAF inventory includes several aircrafts such as MiG series, Sukhoi Su-30, HAL Tejas, SEPECAT Jaguar, Boeing 707, Ilyushin series, helicopters like the indigenously developed HAL Dhruv, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for reconnaissance and surveillance, and missiles
- Gyan Circle Ventures
The issue in news
Union Education Minister virtually inaugurates Gyan Circle Ventures.
About Gyan Circle Ventures:
- It is a Technology Business Incubator (TBI) of the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Sri City (Chittoor), Andhra Pradesh, funded by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY).
- Gyan Circle Ventures would function as a Technology Incubation and Development of Entrepreneurs (TIDE 2.0) incubation centre as approved by the MeitY.
- The incubator would leverage the institution’s entrepreneurial spirit by utilizing its intellectual capital and engage in using emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Block-chain, Cyber Physical Systems (CPS), Cyber Security, Internet of Things (IoT), Robotics, etc.
- The venture will serve as a hub for innovation and start-ups by providing support, in various phases, via investments, infrastructure and mentoring.
- Notably, the TBI would have an Advisory Committee comprising leading industrialists, entrepreneurs and technical experts.
- It would enable incubatees to leverage these expert mentors and networks from both the academia and the industry.
- Arctic Amplification
The issue in news
Recently, a team of scientists identified iodic acid (HIO ) being a reason behind aerosol particle formation in the Arctic region which causes Arctic Amplification or Arctic Warming.
- Presence of Iodic acid in the region had not been observed previously.
- These aerosol particles influence the formation of clouds. As these clouds reflect solar radiation (known as Aerosol Radiative Forcing) but also retain heat on the Earth’s surface, they have an influence on the warming of the Arctic.
- Change in Albedo: Melting bright reflective ice with more albedo paves the way for darker ocean , which lowers the Albedo and therefore amplifies the warming process.
- Changing Ocean current
- Changing Weather
Impact in the Arctic:
- Snow cover over land in the Arctic has decreased. Additionally permafrost (frozen ground in arctic) IS ALSO WARMING
- Higher temperature will cause a Sea-Level Rise
- Upon warming Arctic permafrost is also releasing the potent greenhouse gas methane causing profound global warming effects.
- Arctic wildfire, called Zombie Fire intensity is also increasing each year
- The Arctic Council is the leading intergovernmental forum promoting cooperation, coordination and interaction among the Arctic States, Arctic indigenous communities and other Arctic inhabitants on common Arctic issues, in particular on issues of sustainable development and environmental protection in the Arctic.
- Recently, the Indian Prime Minister at Eastern Economic Forum (EEF), mentioned India’s willingness to play a significant role in the Arctic