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Prelim Bits 02-11-2019

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November 02, 2019

International Solar Alliance Assembly

  • Ministry of New and Renewable Energy hosted 2nd assembly of International Solar Alliance at New Delhi.
  • The assembly had the participation from member countries, ISA Partners, and other invitees.
  • As of now, there are 83 member countries with Eritrea and St. Kittis and Nevis latest countries to join ISA.
  • The Assembly is the supreme decision-making body of the ISA.
  • It gives directions on various administrative, financial and programme related issues.
  • India’s Minister for New and Renewable Energy and Power is President of the ISA Assembly and France’s Minister of State for the Ecological and Inclusive Transition is the Co-President of the Assembly.

Click here to know more about ISA.


  • The 25th Conference of Parties (COP 25) of The United Nations Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was planned to be hosted by Chile.
  • But due to domestic social unrest faced by the Chile government, it announced its withdrawal from hosting the event.
  • The Spain government has offered to host the event, but Chile’s environment minister will remain the President of COP 25.
  • The decision to change venues ultimately lay with the UN COP bureau, a 12-member panel of climate diplomats drawn from across the world and chaired by Head of the government of previously hosted nation.
  • Currently the bureau is headed by Polish President as COP 24 was held in Katowice, Poland.
  • The UN Climate Headquarters is in Bonn, Germany.


  • It is a new site excavated by Archaeological Survey of India in the State of Andhra Pradesh.
  • The remains of a huge settlement surrounded by a massive brick enclosure has been discovered.
  • One life size Vishnu sculpture and a wide variety of pottery of the early centuries of current era have been excavated.
  • The site of Gottiprolu lies on the right bank of a distributary of river Swarnamukhi in South Andhra Pradesh. It lies close to Tirupati and Nellore.
  • Further explorations revealed various forms of antiquarian remains extending from Tamil Nadu and culturally linked with each other.

Bamboo Technology Park

  • Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region and the North Eastern Council (NEC) have announced setting up of Bamboo Technology Park in Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.
  • The parks will be in Jammu, Srinagar and Leh and it is consonance with the National Bamboo Mission (NBM).
  • The Cane and Bamboo Technology Centre (CBTC) under NEC will implement the project.
  • The model for bamboo cultivation, harvesting and utilisation currently existing in the North Eastern Region shall be replicated in the 2 UTs.
  • A Bamboo Industrial Park has already been approved to be set up in the Dima Hasao district of Assam.

Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA)

  • Union HRD Minister has recently reviewed the preparations of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan and Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti in New Delhi for its participation in PISA, 2021.
  • The PISA is a competency-based test to assess the quality of education systems across the world.
  • It assesses the learning levels of 15-year-old students in reading, mathematics, science, collaborative problem solving and money literacy.
  • The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) conducts PISA every three years.
  • It does not test a student’s memory and curriculum-based knowledge.
  • PISA’s science test, , measures three competencies —
  1. Ability to explain scientific phenomena
  2. Scientific interpretation of data and evidence
  3. Ability to design and evaluate scientific query.
  • Similarly, PISA defines reading as an individual’s capacity to understand, use and reflect on written information in a range of situations.
  • India’s Participation - The country participated in 2009 test with 16,000 students from 400 schools in Himachal Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
  • India was placed 72nd among the 74 participating countries.
  • Indian government decided not to participate in 2012 and 2015 cycles.
  • The decision was revisited in 2016 and HRD ministry approved the decision to participate in 2021 cycle.
  • The students of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti and Union Territory of Chandigarh will represent India in this examination.


Source: PIB, The Hindu

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