Prelims Exam

Revision Notes 


1.Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)

Launched: 2016 by Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare


  • Provide financial support to farmers for crop failure due to natural calamities, pests, or diseases.
  • Stabilize farmer income and encourage modern agricultural practices.
  • Ensure credit flow to the agriculture sector.


  • All farmers including sharecroppers and tenant farmers growing notified crops in notified areas.
  • Crops covered: Food crops, oilseeds, and annual commercial/horticultural crops.

Premium Subsidy Sharing:

  • Central and State Government share: 50:50 (90:10 for North-Eastern States)
  • Jharkhand and Telangana likely to join, potentially increasing participating states to 22 for the Kharif season.


2.India: Australia’s Top Tier Security Partner


  • Australia’s 2024 National Defence Strategy (NDS) designates India as a top security partner.

Deepening Defence Partnerships

  • NDS prioritizes partnerships with key Indo-Pacific nations like India and Japan.
  • The 2024 Integrated Investment Programme (IIP) outlines specific defence capabilities for Australia to invest in, aligned with the NDS goals.

Goals of Australia’s Defence Strategy

  • Strengthen Australian Defence Force (ADF) capabilities for deterrence and warfighting in the Indo-Pacific.
  • Build stronger partnerships with key countries, including India.
  • Support India’s regional role through practical cooperation in areas like:
    • Defence industry
    • Information sharing
    • Bilateral and multilateral cooperation

India-Australia Defence Relations

  • Upgraded from “strategic partnership” (2009) to “Comprehensive Strategic Partnership” (2020).
  • Numerous institutional mechanisms promote bilateral cooperation:
    • High-level visits
    • Annual Prime Ministerial Meetings
    • Foreign Ministers’ Framework Dialogue
    • 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue (Defence & Foreign Affairs)
    • Joint Trade & Commerce Ministerial Commission
    • Defence Policy Talks
    • Defence Services Staff Talks
    • Many more

Focus Areas of Strategic Partnership

  • Maritime security
  • Counter-terrorism
  • Regional stability in the Indo-Pacific

QUAD (Quadrilateral Security Dialogue):

  • Informal strategic forum involving India, Australia, USA, and Japan.
  • Promotes a free, open, prosperous, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.

India-Australia Defence Cooperation Highlights

  • Upgraded Secretaries’ 2+2 Dialogue to Ministerial level (2020).
  • “Joint Guidance for the India-Australia Navy to Navy Relationship” (2021).
  • Malabar Exercise (2020): India, USA, Japan, and Australia.
  • AUSINDEX (Naval Exercise)
  • Pitch Black Air Force Exercise (India’s first participation in 2018).
  • Mutual Logistic Support Arrangement (2020).
  • Defence Science & Technology Implementing Arrangement.
  • Increasing interoperability through shared military platforms (C-17, C-130, P-8 aircraft, Chinook helicopters).
  • Regular exchanges of military officials for training.


  • India-Australia defence and strategic cooperation has grown significantly in recent years.
  • Australia’s NDS emphasizes continued support for India’s regional role and deeper defence cooperation.
  • This partnership is driven by a shared perception of China’s growing threat.



3.Net Direct Tax Collections Surpass Target in 2023-24


  • India’s net direct tax collections reached ₹19.58 lakh crore in 2023-24, exceeding targets.

Target vs. Achievement

  • Budget Estimates (BE) for Direct Tax revenue in FY 2023-24 were ₹18.23 lakh crore.
  • Revised Estimates (RE) were fixed at ₹19.45 lakh crore.
  • Provisional Direct Tax collections exceeded:
    • BE by 7.40%
    • RE by 0.67%

Direct Tax Collection Highlights

  • Net collections (provisional) for FY 2023-24: ₹19.58 lakh crore (up 17.70% from FY 2022-23).
  • Gross collections (provisional) for FY 2023-24: ₹23.37 lakh crore (up 18.48% from FY 2022-23).
  • Refunds issued in FY 2023-24: ₹3.79 lakh crore (up 22.74% from FY 2022-23).

Breakdown by Tax Type

  • Corporate Tax
    • Gross collection (provisional) in FY 2023-24: ₹11.32 lakh crore (up 13.06% from FY 2022-23).
    • Net collection (provisional) in FY 2023-24: ₹9.11 lakh crore (up 10.26% from FY 2022-23).
  • Personal Income Tax (including STT)
    • Gross collection (provisional) in FY 2023-24: ₹12.01 lakh crore (up 24.26% from FY 2022-23).
    • Net collection (provisional) in FY 2023-24: ₹10.44 lakh crore (up 25.23% from FY 2022-23).

What are Direct Taxes?

  • Levied based on an individual’s ability to pay.
  • Aim to redistribute wealth within the country.

Types of Direct Taxes

  • Estate Tax (Inheritance Tax)
  • Income Tax
  • Wealth Tax
  • Corporate Tax
  • Capital Gains Tax

 Science and Tech.

4.Aditya-L1: India’s First Mission to Study the Sun

Mission Overview

  • Launched by ISRO on September 2, 2023 (PSLV-C57).
  • First Indian observatory dedicated to solar study.
  • Continuously sending valuable data about the Sun.

Why L1?

  • Aditya-L1 is positioned at the L1 Lagrange Point of the Sun-Earth system.
  • L1 offers advantages over Low Earth Orbit (LEO):
    • Smoother Sun-spacecraft velocity change for helioseismology.
    • Location outside Earth’s magnetosphere for solar wind and particle sampling.
    • Unobstructed, continuous Sun observation and Earth view for communication.

Scientific Payloads (7 Total)

  • Remote Sensing (4):
    • Visible Emission Line Coronagraph (VELC): Studies corona, coronal mass ejections.
    • Solar Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (SUIT): Images photosphere and chromosphere, measures solar irradiance variations.
    • Solar Low Energy X-ray Spectrometer (SoLEXS) & High Energy L1 Orbiting X-ray Spectrometer (HEL1OS): Study solar X-ray flares.
  • In-situ Observation (3):
    • Aditya Solar Wind Particle Experiment (ASPEX) & Plasma Analyser Package For Aditya (PAPA): Analyze solar wind particles (electrons, protons, energetic ions).
    • Advanced Tri-axial High Resolution Digital Magnetometers: Study interplanetary magnetic field at L1.

Lagrange Points Explained

  • Lagrange points (L1-L5) are special positions where the gravitational pull of two large objects (e.g., Sun and Earth) balances the centrifugal force acting on a smaller object.
  • L1 is an unstable point but ideal for continuous Sun observation (also used by SOHO satellite).


5.Ross Ice Shelf: Surprising Movements

  • Largest ice shelf in Antarctica (size of France).
  • Located in Ross Sea, extending into Southern Ocean.
  • Named after explorer Sir James Clark Ross (19th century).

Sudden Jumps

  • Researchers discovered twice-daily jumps in the ice shelf.
  • Movement caused by pressure between ice sections, similar to tectonic plates.
  • This friction may trigger icequakes (seismic disturbances in ice).



6.Ethylene Oxide in Spices: Safety Concerns

What is Ethylene Oxide (EtO)?

  • Highly reactive gas used as a food fumigant.
  • Kills bacteria, viruses, and fungi to prevent contamination.
  • Flammable, colorless gas with a sweet odor.

Health Risks

  • Carcinogenic (cancer-causing) with long-term exposure.
  • Mutagenic (alters DNA) if inhaled.
  • Reproductive health risks at high concentrations.

Recent News

  • Singapore recalled Indian spice products due to alleged EtO presence.
  • This highlights a potential gap between Indian production standards and international import requirements.


7.World Earth Day: Celebrating Our Planet

What is World Earth Day?

  • Celebrated annually on April 22nd.
  • A global event raising awareness about environmental sustainability.


  • Emerged in the late 1960s amidst growing environmental concerns.
  • First celebrated on US campuses in 1970 (following a major oil spill).
  • Today, mobilizes over a billion people in 192+ countries.


  • Focus on different environmental issues each year.
  • 2024 theme: “Planet vs. Plastics”
    • Highlights the dangers of plastic pollution on our planet and health.
    • Calls for an end to plastic waste, demanding a 60% reduction in plastic production by 2040.







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