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Prelim Bits 15-03-2017

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March 15, 2017

Prelim Bits 15-03-2017

Shortest-Duration Cotton Variety

  • One of the main reasons for repeated failure of dryland cotton crop is its long duration i.e around 170-240 days.
  • This extends well beyond the monsoon months.
  • These plants then go without water during the crucial time of flowering and fruiting and suffer weak uptake of nutrients.
  • Central Institute for Cotton Research has developed what is reported to be the shortest-duration cotton variety in the world, tentatively named Yugank.
  • It requires only 100-120 days for maturity.
  • This could emerge as the solution to the problems of dryland cotton farmers.
  • Another advantage of shorter-duration cotton is that the fibre quality is better. The longer the duration, the weaker will be the fibre.

National Security Council (NSC)

  • NSC of India is an executive government agency tasked with advising the Prime Minister's office on matters of national security and strategic interest.
  • The members are the National Security Advisor (NSA), the Deputy National Security Advisor (DNSA), the Ministers of Defence, External Affairs, Home & Finance of the GOI.
  • It is the apex body of the three-tiered structure of the national security management system in India. The other two are the Strategic Policy Group and the National Security Advisory Board.
  • It was established in 1998.

Credible Minimum Deterrence

  • Credible Minimum Deterrence is the principle on which India’s nuclear doctrine is based.
  • It underlines no first use (NFU) with a second strike capability.
  • Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) is another doctrine of military strategy in which a full-scale use of nuclear weapons by two or more opposing sides would cause the complete annihilation of both the attacker and the defender.

Oldest Plant Fossil

  • A pair of 1.6 billion-year-old fossils that appear to contain red algae was found in Chitrakoot in central India.
  • This might be the oldest plant-like life discovered on Earth.
  • The oldest known red algae until now was 1.2 billion years old.
  • Scientists generally agree that large multicellular organisms became common about 600 million years ago.
  • This discovery could lead experts to rewrite the tree of life.
  • The fossils were embedded in fossil mats of cyanobacteria, called stromatolites.
  • Stromatolites are layered mounds, columns, and sheet-like sedimentary rocks originally formed by the growth of layer upon layer of cyanobacteria.


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