My Notes - 16-31 March 2024

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‘Operation Indravati’ launched

  • India launched ‘Operation Indravati’ to evacuate its citizens from the turmoil-stricken Haiti to the neighboring Dominican Republic.
  • Haiti, situated in the Caribbean, has plunged into chaos with armed gangs seizing control of the streets, resulting in the virtual disappearance of the government.

Conservation of the Great Indian Bustard

  • The Supreme Court constituted a seven-member committee to find a balance between conservation measures for the Great Indian Bustard (GIB) and efforts to generate renewable energy in the same regions.
  • The GIB is an avian species, which was classified as ‘Critically Endangered’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature in 2011 — there are currently less than 200 GIBs in India and they are mainly found in Rajasthan and Gujarat.
  • The biggest threat to these birds is the overhead power lines as frequent collisions have resulted in the death of many GIBs.

Small-scale LNG as fuel

  • The government has an ambition to turn India into a gas-based economy by pushing adoption and use of natural gas across sectors and across the country.
  • One such promising solution is small-scale LNG (SSLNG). India’s largest gas utility GAIL (India) Ltd recently commissioned the country’s first SSLNG unit at its Vijaipur complex in Madhya Pradesh.

Katchatheevu island

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi once again raised the issue about the island of Katchatheevu which was given away to Sri Lanka.
  • Katchatheevu is a 285-acre uninhabited speck in the Palk Strait, between India and Sri Lanka.
  • In 1974, Indira Gandhi ‘ceded’ Katchatheevu to Sri Lanka as a part of the Indo-Sri Lankan Maritime agreement’.

Delist some ‘lost’ monuments

  • The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has decided to delist 18 “centrally protected monuments” because it has assessed that they do not have national importance.
  • Delisting of a monument effectively means it will no longer be conserved, protected, and maintained by the ASI.
  • Under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958 (AMASR Act), any kind of construction-related activity is not allowed around a protected site.

Integrated farm data dashboard

  • Agriculture Minister Arjun Munda inaugurated a Krishi Integrated Command and Control Centre (ICCC) set up at Krishi Bhavan in New Delhi, a big-screen dashboard of all digital innovations in the sector.
  • The ICCC is a tech-based solution involving multiple IT applications and platforms, which is designed to help in making informed decisions.
  • The centre is housed in the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare, which is responsible for legislation, policy formation, and implementation of initiatives in the agriculture sector.


UNSC resolution on Gaza ceasefire

  • The UN Security Council demanded an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, and the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages, after the United States abstained from the vote.
  • It is definitely an important signal from the US, which has been supportive of the Israeli government in the UNSC since the Hamas attack on 7 October 2023.

Pakistan carries out strikes inside Afghanistan

  • Pakistan carried out “intelligence-based anti-terrorist operations” inside the neighbouring country.
  • After this strikes, the Foreign Office statement said they had targetted terrorists from the Hafiz Gul Bahadur Group, which, along with Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), was behind “deaths of hundreds of civilians and law enforcement officials”.

The Majeed Brigade

  • The Majeed Brigade of the separatist group Baloch Liberation Army (BLA) has claimed responsibility for attack on a complex outside Pakistan’s strategic Gwadar Port.
  • Balochistan, in Pakistan’s southwest, is the country’s largest and most sparsely populated province.
  • It has oil reserves and abundant natural resources, but the ethnic Baloch are Pakistan’s poorest and most under-represented people.

The Russia concert attack

  • The Islamic State Khorasan (ISIS-K) claimed responsibility for the Moscow’s famous Crocus City Hall attack, killing at least 143 people, and injuring hundreds more.
  • Islamic State Khorasan (ISIS-K), emerged in eastern Afghanistan in late 2014, and is currently one of the most active ISIS-affiliates.
  • Khorasan’ refers to an ancient caliphate in the region that today encompasses parts of Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan and Turkmenistan.


State of employment in India

  • The improvement in labour market indicators has coincided with periods of economic distress, both before and during the Covid-19 pandemic, says the India Employment Report 2024 released by the Institute for Human Development and International Labour Organisation.
  • The ‘employment condition index’ has improved between 2004-05 and 2021-22.
  • But some states — Bihar, Odisha, Jharkhand, and UP — have remained at the bottom throughout this period, while some others — Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Telangana, Uttarakhand, and Gujarat — have stayed at the top.

The gender pay gap

  • World Bank Group report found that globally, women earn just 77 cents for every dollar paid to men.
  • This difference has been cited in the past as an example of the “gender pay gap” – women earning less than men on average.
  • According to the ILO, the gender pay gap is defined as the gap between the average wage level of all women and all men working in the labour market for a monthly salary, hourly or daily wage.

Science & Technology

First ever Nuclear Energy Summit

  • Brussels hosted a first-of-its-kind Nuclear Energy Summit that was billed as the most high-profile international meeting on nuclear energy ever, boasting the attendance of representatives from 30 countries.
  • The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which organised eevent, called it a “landmark” and a “turning point” in the efforts to expand the use of nuclear energy for generating clean electricity.
  • Nuclear Energy is a clean source of energy with a minimal carbon footprint. There is negligible release of emissions during the electricity generation process.

ISRO's winged vehicle 'Pushpak'

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) on 22 March 2024 successfully conducted the RLV LEX-02 landing experiment, in a significant demonstration of competence in the Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) technology.
  • The second in the series of landing experiments with the vehicle was conducted at the Aeronautical Test Range (ATR) in Chitradurga.

Solar waste by 2030

  • India generated about 100 kilotonnes (kt) of solar waste in the financial year (FY) 2022-2023, according to a new study published by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).
  • Solar waste refers to the waste generated during the manufacturing of solar modules and waste from the field (project lifetime).
  • Manufacturing involves two streams of waste, including the scrap that’s produced and the waste generated from PV modules failing.

India’s indigenous AI

  • Indian multinational ridesharing company, Ola, introduced Krutrim AI, claiming it as “India’s own AI”.
  • Krutrim AI is an assistant “envisioned to be your own personalised assistant, which can simplify your personal and professional life by getting a variety of tasks done for you, while keeping the aesthetic sense and sensibilities of the Indian ethos.”


Metal-rich Indian Ocean seabed

  • Indian delegates have been visiting the International Seabed Authority (ISA), Jamaica to strengthen efforts to explore two deep sea regions in the Indian Ocean for
  • New Delhi is exploring obtaining rights to mine a metal-rich region, the Carlsberg Ridge, located away from India’s western shores, and a cobalt-rich ferromanganese crusts in deep seabed region, Afanasy-Nikitin Seamount (ANS), located away from the eastern shores, both in the vast Indian Ocean.

Flood in Kerala’s coastal areas

  • Hundreds of houses have been flooded in several coastal areas of Kerala due to high sea waves, also known as swell waves.
  • Such flooding events are called swell surge or Kallakkadal in Malayalam.
  • Kallakkadal is essentially coastal flooding during the pre-monsoon (April-May) season by swell waves on the southwest coast of India.

Nvidia’s Project GR00T

  • AI chip leader Nvidia on 19 March 2024 announced Project GR00T or Generalist Robot 00 Technology, which promises to revolutionise the evolution of humanoid robots.
  • The project aims to empower humanoid robots with human-like understanding and movement using Artificial Intelligence (AI).

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