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Prelim Bits 06-11-2022 & 07-11-2022 | UPSC Daily Current Affairs

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November 07, 2022

Yugpurush Raja Rammohun Roy

A one-year long celebration was launched by the Union Ministry of Culture on the occasion of the 250th birth anniversary of Raja Ram Mohan Roy.

A dance drama titled 'Yugpurush Raja Rammohun Roy’ based on the life of Raja Rammohun Roy is organised at Kartavya Path and India Gate.

Raja Rammohun Roy

  • Raja Rammohun Roy was born on May 22, 1772 in Radhanagar, West Bengal.
  • He played a remarkable role in the religious, social and political reforms of India.
  • He is remembered as the "Father of the Indian Renaissance".
  • He played a major role in the abolition of Sati (1829).

Opposed

Orthodox Hindu rituals

Idol worship

Supported

Monotheism

  • In 1814, Raja Ram Mohan Roy formed Atmiya Sabha, it was a philosophical discussion circle.
  • The main objective of the Sabha was conducting discussion and debate sessions on monotheistic Hindu Vedantism.
  • In 1828, he founded the Brahmo Samaj along with Debendranath Tagore.
  • In his first book ‘Tuhfat al-muwahhidi’ (A Gift to Monotheism), he advocated for reason in religion and opposed ritualism.

Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose in his book ‘The India Struggle’ called him ‘The apostle of a religious revival’ in India.

Kandukuri Veeresalingam

  • Kandukuri Veeresalingam was an eminent social reformer popularly known as Andhra Raja Ram Mohan Roy.
  • He was born on 1848 in Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh
  • He was a strong advocate of widow remarriage and batted for empowering women through education.
  • He opposed dowry, caste systems and also child marriage.
  • Following the footsteps of Brahmo Samaj, he established the first Brahmo Mandir in Andhra at Rajahmundry in 1887.

References

  1. PIB - 250th Birth Anniversary of Raja Ram Mohan Roy
  2. The Indian Express - Remembering The Legacy Of The Father Of Modern Indian Renaissance
  3. The Indian Express - The apostle of a religious revival

Indian Black Honeybee

A new species of endemic honeybee called Indian black honeybee has been discovered in the Western Ghats.

The last honeybee discovered from India was Apis indica in 1798 by Fabricius.

  • The new species has been named Apis karinjodian and given the common name Indian black honeybee.
  • Apis karinjodian has evolved from Apis cerana morphotypes that got acclimatised to the hot and humid environment of the Western Ghats.
  • Distribution – Indian black honeybee is endemic to Western Ghats.
  • Ranges from the central Western Ghats and Nilgiris to the southern Western Ghats, covering the States of Goa, Karnataka, Kerala and parts of Tamil Nadu.
  • Nesting Type – Cavity nesting (Type of honey bee used in India for commercial honey production)
  • Honey - Indian black honey bee produces thicker and consistent high quality honey.
  • IUCN Status – Near Threatened
  • Indian black honey is one among the 3 species of cavity-nesting honey bees in India. The other 2 are - Apis indica and Apis cerana

References

  1. The Hindu - New honeybee species, endemic to Western Ghats, found
  2. The New IndianExpress - New species of honeybee spotted after 200 years in Western Ghats

Polavaram Project

December-end is fixed as the deadline to rehabilitate Polavaram-displaced families.

  • Background - The Polavaram project implements Godavari-Krishna link under Interlinking of rivers project.
  • The project aims to transfer the surplus water from Godavari to Krishna river basin.
  • Legality - Under the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014, Polavaram Irrigation Project has been declared a National Project.
  • Polavaram Project Authority (PPA) was constituted under this act to carry out this project.
  • Project Details -The Polavaram Irrigation Project (PIP) is a multipurpose project on the River Godavari located around West Godavari and East Godavari Districts in Andhra Pradesh.
  • Under this project, a gravity dam is under construction across the Godavari River in Polavaram Mandal in West Godavari district.
  • The back waters of the reservoir spreads in parts of Chhattisgarh and Orissa States.
  • The project aims for development of Irrigation, Hydropower and drinking water facilities to East Godavari, Vishakhapatnam, West Godavari and Krishna districts.

References

  1. The Hindu - December-end deadline to rehabilitate Polavaram-displaced families

  2. Water Resources Department - Polavaram Project

The River Nile

The Nile River is currently facing grave threats from climate change, pollution, and human exploitation.

  • The Nile River is the longest river in Africa and runs from Uganda to Egypt.
  • The river’s water basin covers 10% of the continent (almost 11 countries).
  • The Nile River flows over 6,600 km south-north from Lake Victoria (White Nile) and empties into the Mediterranean Sea.
  • The 3 main tributaries of Nile are
  1. The White Nile,
  2. The Blue Nile and
  3. The Atbara.
  • Just before reaching the Mediterranean Sea, the river splits into two main branches,
  1. The Rosetta Branch (to the west) and
  2. The Damietta (to the east).

nilemap

Threats

  • The life of millions of Africans depends on the Nile but global warming and being overused by humans is putting the river under strain.

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the Nile Delta is one of the three regions in the world that are most vulnerable to global warming.

  • The UN predicts that the Nile River will lose 70% of its flow by the end of the century leaving many without water.
  • Drying of Lake Victoria - Lake Victoria is the Nile’s main source of water.
  • However, the lake is currently in danger of disappearing due to evaporation, a lack of precipitation, and changes in the tilt of the Earth’s axis.
  • Mediterranean Sea level rise - A third of the delta could disappear if the sea level rises even by a metre.
  • UNEP warned if temperature continues to rise, the Mediterranean would advance 100m further into the Delta each year.
  • Silt From Floods - The silt that for long form the barrier to protect the land no longer makes it to the sea.
  • The silt sediment that was once swept along the river’s bed has struggled to get beyond Southern Egypt since the Aswan dam was built.
  • Excess salination - With less freshwater arriving, the Nile Delta will be invaded by more salt water from the Mediterranean.

In 1970, the Aswan High Dam was built in Egypt to help regulate the Nile's flooding.

References

  1. The Hindu - Why is the Nile River in danger?
  2. The Washington Post - Climate change and rising sea levels threaten the Nile River Delta

RISAT-2

ISRO’s RISAT-2 satellite has made an uncontrolled re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere.

  • RISAT-2 was launched by the PSLV-C12 launch vehicle in 2009.
  • It is the first of the RISAT series to reach orbit.
  • The satellite weighs about 300 kg.
  • The initial designed life of the satellite was 4 years but with proper maintenance it worked for 13 years.
  • RISAT-2 is a Radar Imaging Satellite with all-weather capability.
  • This Satellite was largely used for surveillance purpose and enhanced ISRO’s capability for Disaster Management applications.
  • RISAT-2 was launched before RISAT-1 (2012) due to the Mumbai terror attacks of 2008.
  • The principal sensor (X-band synthetic-aperture radar) of RISAT-2 is from Israel.

References

  1. The Hindu - RISAT-2 satellite makes re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere
  2. Live Mint - India's RISAT-2 re-enters earth after 13.5 years
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