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PRELIMS BOOSTER 2018: Ganges shark and Commonwealth of Nations


PRELIMS BOOSTER 2018

Ganges shark and Commonwealth of Nations


Ganges shark


  1. critically endangered – IUCN
  2. Schedule I species
  3. shark found in the Ganges River (Padma River) and the Brahmaputra River of Bangladesh and India

 

  1. The genus is currently considered to contain three recent species
  • Borneo river shark
  • Irrawaddy river shark
  • Ganges shark

 

  1. Habitat

Inhabit only freshwater, inshore marine, and estuarine systems in the lower reaches of the Ganges-Hooghly River system

 

  1. Range

Restricted to the rivers of eastern and northeastern India, particularly the Hooghly River of West Bengal, and the Ganges, Brahmaputra, and Mahanadi in Bihar, Assam, and Odisha, respectively

 

  1. Threats — restricted to a very narrow band of habitat that is heavily affected by human activity
  • Overfishing
  • habitat degradation from pollution
  • increasing river use and management, including construction of dams and barrages
  • consumed locally for its meat
  • part of the Asian shark fin trade

Commonwealth of Nations


  1. Former name — British Commonwealth
  2. intergovernmental organisation of 53 member states that are mostly former territories of the British Empire
  3. It operates by intergovernmental consensus of the member states
  4. Established in 1949 by the London Declaration

 

  1. Structure
  • Head of the Commonwealth — Queen Elizabeth II is the Head of the Commonwealth. The position is symbolic.
  • Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
  • main decision-making forum
  • biennial meeting
  • Commonwealth Secretariat — London
  • Facilitate consultation and co-operation among member governments and countries
  • It organises Commonwealth summits, meetings of ministers, consultative meetings and technical discussions
  • Secretary-General
  • elected by Commonwealth heads of government for no more than two four-year terms
  • Represent Commonwealth at United Nations General Assembly

 

  1. Peace in the home programme — help member states tackle domestic violence