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Insights Daily Current Events, 08 June 2015

Insights Daily Current Events, 08 June 2015

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G7 summit opens with tough line on Ukraine

The second G7 summit, hosted by German chancellor Angela Merkel, was recently inaugurated. The summit will be attended by US President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron, French President Francois Hollande, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

  • Among other issues, the meeting will focus on the continued fighting in Ukraine and sanctions on Russia, which U.S. and German leaders agreed should remain in place.
  • The meeting also focuses on global issues — from climate change and Islamist extremism to women’s rights, public health initiatives and the fight against poverty.

G7: The Group of Seven (G7) is an informal bloc of industrialized democracies–the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom–that meets annually to discuss issues such as global economic governance, international security, and energy policy.

 

Sources: The Hindu, cfr.org.

 

Kadapa airport to be named after Annamayya

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu recently said that he would get the Kadapa airport named after the saint-poet, Tallapaka Annamacharya.

About Tallapaka Annamacharya:

  • He was a 15th-century Hindu saint and is the earliest known Indian musician to compose songs called sankirtanas in praise of the god Venkateswara, a form of Vishnu.
  • The musical form of the keertana songs that he composed, which are still popular among Carnatic music concert artists, have strongly influenced the structure of Carnatic music compositions.
  • He was born in Tallapaka, a village in Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh, India.
  • Annamacharya is remembered for his saintly life, and is honoured as a great devotee of Vishnu by devotees and saintly singers.


  • He is believed to have been the avatar of Nandaka, the sword of Vishnu.
  • He is widely regarded as the Andhra Pada kavitā Pitāmaha(Godfather of Telugu song-writing).
  • Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams, also known as TTD, has been endeavouring to preserve the rich heritage of his compositions.

Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.

 

Tipaimukh project

Prime Minister Modi recently made it clear that the Indian government will not take any unilateral decision on the Tipaimukh Hydro-Electric Power Project which may adversely affect Bangladesh. This was stated in a joint declaration between Bangladesh and India.

  • Bangladesh has been demanding to stop the construction of the Tipaimukh Hydro-Electric Power Project on the Barak River on the eastern edge of Bangladesh.

About Tipaimukh project:

  • The project aims to construct a dam on the river Barak in Manipur, India.
  • The purpose of the dam is flood control and hydroelectric power generation.
  • It has been subject to repeated delays as the project developed, as there has been controversy between India and Bangladesh over water rights, in addition to questions of environmental effects of the huge project, as well as the need to relocate Manipuri people to make way for a vast reservoir.

 


  • Bangladeshis say that the massive dam will disrupt the seasonal rhythm of the river and have an adverse effect on downstream agriculture and fisheries.
  • The Tipaimukh area lies in an ecologically sensitive and topographically fragile region. It is within one of the most seismically volatile regions on the planet.
  • Green activists say that Tipaimukh area is a habitat of many endangered species including barking deer, gibbons, leopards, grey sibia, serow and the rufous-necked hornbill–the state bird of Manipur.
  • Experts say that the construction of the proposed 1500 MW Tipaimukh Multipurpose Hydroelectric Project (HEP) downstream of the confluence of river Barak and the Tuivai in Manipur would lead to massive destruction of ecology.

 

Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.

 

Chennai temple yields more history

An inscription of the Chola emperor Rajendra I was recently discovered at the famous Sri Parthasarathy Swamy temple at Triplicane, Tamil Nadu.

  • The inscription offers a “prasasthi”, or eulogy, of Rajendra I, speaking of the fame of the emperor, who ruled between AD 1012 and 1044, and his conquests of many lands including in Vanavasi (Banavasi) and the present-day Kalaburgi region, both in Karnataka, and so on.
  • A mural depicting the Kurukshetra war, a row of horse-drawn chariots and fiercely moustachioed charioteers, all battle-ready, was also discovered. The mural runs to many metres, but had been inexplicably covered with plaster.
  • These findings came to light while conservation work was taken up ahead of the Maha Samprokshanam at the temple.

About Parthasarathy Swamy temple:

It is an 8th-century Hindu Vaishnavite temple dedicated to the god Krishna, located at Triplicane, Chennai, India. It was originally built by the Pallavas in the 8th century by king Narasimhavarman I.

  • The temple has five of the incarnations or avatars of Vishnu: Narasimhar, Ramar, Varadaraja, Ranganathar and Krishna.
  • The temple is glorified in the Divya Prabandha, the early medieval Tamil literature canon of the Alvar saints from the 6th–9th centuries CE and is classified as among the 108 Divya Desams dedicated to Vishnu.
  • The name ‘Parthasarathy’, in Sanskrit, means the ‘charioteer of Arjuna’, referring to Krishna’s role as a charioteer to Arjuna in the epic Mahabaratha.
  • The temple is replete with inscriptions of the Pallavas, the Cholas, the Pandyas and the Vijayanagara kings.


 

Sources: The Hindu, Wiki, sriparthasarathytemple.tnhrce.in.

 

 

Agreements and MoUs signed

During Prime Minister Modi’s recent visit to Bangladesh, India and Bangladesh signed and exchanged 22 instruments, including four agreements, three protocols, 14 memoranda of understanding (MoUs) and one letter of consent on a range of issues.

Important agreements:

  • Exchange of Instruments of Ratification of 1974 Land Boundary Agreement and its 2011 Protocol.
  • Exchange of letters on Modalities for implementation of 1974 Land Boundary Agreement and its 2011 Protocol
  • Agreement on Coastal Shipping between Bangladesh and India
  • Bilateral Cooperation Agreement between Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI) and Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) on Cooperation in the field of Standardization
  • Agreement on Dhaka-Shillong-Guwahati bus service and its Protocol
  • Agreement on Kolkata-Dhaka-Agartala Bus Service and its Protocol
  • Memorandum of Understanding on Prevention of Human Trafficking
  • Memorandum of Understanding on Prevention of Smuggling and Circulation Fake Currency Notes
  • Memorandum of Understanding between Bangladesh and India and for Extending a New Line of Credit of $2 billion by government of India to government of Bangladesh
  • Memorandum of Understanding on Blue Economy and Maritime Cooperation in the Bay of Bengal and the Indian Ocean
  • Memorandum of Understanding on use of Chittagong and Mongla ports
  • Memorandum of Understanding for a Project under IECC (India Endowment for Climate Change) of SAARC

Sources: PIB.

 

 

India and Netherlands Signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)

A Memorandum of Understanding was arrived at between India and Netherlands for development of vaccines.

  • The MoU signed under ‘Make in India’ initiative of Government of India will enable the Bharat Immunologicals and Biologicals Corporation Ltd (BIBCOL), a Central PSU under Department of Biotechnology, to develop Measles – Rubella vaccine at its plant at Chola, Bulandshahr, U.P. Translational Vaccinology (INTRAVACC) a government-based institute of the Netherlands will extend technical support for the development of vaccine.
  • Under the MoU cooperation in development of other vaccines and biologicals with DBT Research Institutes shall be explored.

Bharat Immunologicals and Biological Corporation Limited (BIBCOL), Bulandshahar, UP is a Central Public Sector Unit, under the Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India. BIBCOL was established as a PSU in 1989, with the aim to achieve self-sufficiency for the nation with respect to production and supply of high quality polio vaccine and other biologicals.

Measles:

Measles is a highly contagious, serious disease caused by a virus. The disease remains one of the leading causes of death among young children globally, despite the availability of a safe and effective vaccine.

  • Measles is caused by a virus in the paramyxovirus family and it is normally passed through direct contact and through the air. It is an airborne disease. It may also be spread through contact with saliva or nasal secretions.
  • The virus infects the mucous membranes, and then spreads throughout the body. Measles is a human disease and is not known to occur in animals.
  • Approximately 145 700 people died from measles in 2013 – mostly children under the age of 5.
  • Initial signs and symptoms typically include fever, cough, runny nose, and red eyes. Two or three days after the start of symptoms, small white spots may form inside the mouth, known as Koplik’s spots. A red, flat rash which usually starts on the face and then spreads to the rest of the body typically begins three to five days after the start of symptoms.
  • Accelerated immunization activities have had a major impact on reducing measles deaths. During 2000-2013, measles vaccination prevented an estimated 15.6 million deaths. Global measles deaths have decreased by 75% from an estimated 544 200 in 2000 to 145 700 in 2013.
  • Unvaccinated young children are at highest risk of measles and its complications, including death. Unvaccinated pregnant women are also at risk. Any non-immune person (who has not been vaccinated or was vaccinated but did not develop immunity) can become infected.

 

Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.

 

Delhi, Dhaka set boundary pact in motion

In a historic step towards improving ties, India and Bangladesh exchanged the instruments of ratification of the Land Boundary Agreement recently, promising an end to the “stateless existence” of more than 50,000 people on both sides of the border.

 

About the land swap deal:

The swap will involve handing over 17,000 acres of land to Bangladesh in return for 7,000 acres in 111 enclaves in West Bengal, Assam, Tripura and Meghalaya, and was first decided under the 1974 Land Boundary Agreement (LBA) between India and Bangladesh, but never ratified by Parliament.

  • It will require an amendment to the Constitution (the 119th amendment) ratified by both Houses of Parliament with a two-thirds majority.
  • The deal relates to demarcation of boundary under the Land Boundary Agreement between the two countries.

How will it affect the existing citizens?

  • The number of people to be involved in the whole swap is approximately 52,000, of which about 15,000 are on the Indian side of the border.
  • Under this agreement, the enclave residents could continue to reside at their present location or move to the country of their choice.

Sources: PIB.

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