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Current Affairs 09 August 2023

CONTENTS

  1. Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)
  2. Revised Good Manufacturing Practices
  3. Recalling ‘Quit India’
  4. Import Restrictions on Laptops, Computers, and Components by India’s DGFT
  5. Genetic Diversity Across the Indian Subcontinent
  6. Digital India RISC-V (DIR-V) Program
  7. River Devika Rejuvenation Project

 Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)


Context:

In a recent coup, soldiers in the West African nation of Niger installed Gen. Abdourahmane Tchiani as head of state after ousting President Mohamed Bazoum. Apart from the expected international players, such as Russia and the US, the regional bloc Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has been playing an active role.

Relevance:

GS II: International Relations

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. ECOWAS: Fostering Integration and Stability in West Africa
  2. ECOWAS’ Potential Actions in Niger: Challenges and Considerations
  3. ECOWAS and India

ECOWAS: Fostering Integration and Stability in West Africa

Establishment and Mandate:
  • Founded in 1975 through the Lagos Treaty.
  • Also known as CEDEAO (in French).
  • Headquarters located in Abuja, Nigeria.
  • Mandate: Promoting economic integration among member states.
Economic Integration and Vision:
  • Aims for a single common currency and a large trading bloc.
  • Focus on industry, transport, telecommunications, energy, finance, and culture.
  • Vision: Creating a “borderless region” based on democracy, rule of law, and good governance.
  • Vision 2050: Transforming from “ECOWAS of States” to “ECOWAS of the People: Peace and Prosperity to All.”
Role in Conflict Resolution:
  • ECOWAS strives to end military conflicts in the region.
  • Established ECOMOG (Economic Community of West African States Monitoring Group) for regional peacekeeping.
  • ECOMOG deployed forces in Liberia (1990) and Sierra Leone (1997) during civil unrest.
  • 2017 intervention in The Gambia to resolve political crisis.
Recent Challenges and Actions:
  • Suspended Mali, Guinea, and Burkina Faso following coups.
  • ECOWAS refused to recognize new governments in these countries.
  • Demonstrates commitment to upholding democratic norms and stability.

ECOWAS’ Potential Actions in Niger: Challenges and Considerations

Historical Context:

  • ECOWAS has not previously intervened militarily in Niger, unlike in other countries.
  • The leader of the ongoing Niger coup, Gen. Tchiani, had previously served as an ECOWAS peacekeeper in Ivory Coast.
Challenges to Military Intervention:
  • Potential military intervention by ECOWAS faces challenges due to geopolitical complexities.
  • Neighboring countries Mali and Burkina Faso, both under military juntas, have shown support for the coup in Niger.
  • An attack on Niger might be interpreted as an attack on these supportive nations.
  • Coups in these countries have been justified by the rising influence of terrorist forces and security challenges.
  • These nations have criticized Western involvement in resolving such issues.
Economic and Political Factors:
  • Economic sanctions imposed by ECOWAS might be limited in their effectiveness due to the economic challenges faced by the region.
  • Low economic growth prospects in these countries could impact the success of sanctions.
  • The Nigerian President, who currently chairs ECOWAS, has called for military action, but the Nigerian Senate has shown resistance.
ECOWAS and India:
  • India has Observer status with ECOWAS since 2004, fostering strong ties.
  • India extends Line of Credit (LOCs) to support ECOWAS’ regional integration and development efforts.
  • Collaboration provides opportunities for Indian companies in sectors like energy, telecom, and transportation in West Africa.
  • ECOWAS has supported India’s bid for a seat in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

-Source: Indian Express


Revised Good Manufacturing Practices


Context:

Recently, the government of India has directed all pharmaceutical companies to implement the Revised Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), bringing their processes at par with Global Standards.

Relevance:

GS II: Indian Economy

Dimensions of the Articles

  1. Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)
  2. Rationale Behind Revised GMP Guidelines
  3. Revised GMP Guidelines for Pharmaceuticals

Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)

  • Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) is a systematic approach to ensure consistent production and control of pharmaceutical products according to established quality standards.
  • GMP is designed to mitigate risks inherent in pharmaceutical manufacturing that cannot be fully addressed through final product testing alone.
Addressing Key Risks:

GMP focuses on minimizing various critical risks associated with pharmaceutical production, including:

  • Unintended contamination of products
  • Potential harm to health or even fatalities
  • Incorrect labeling leading to patient receiving wrong medication
  • Inadequate or excessive active ingredient, resulting in ineffective treatment or adverse effects.
Guidelines by WHO and Beyond:
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) has established comprehensive guidelines for GMP to ensure global consistency and safety.
  • Many countries have adopted their own GMP requirements based on WHO standards.
  • Some regions, like the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the European Union, have harmonized their GMP requirements.
  • GMP ensures that pharmaceutical products meet stringent quality criteria throughout their production lifecycle.
Evolution in India:
  • India incorporated the GMP framework in 1988 through Schedule M of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945.
  • The last amendment to Schedule M was made in June 2005, aligning with evolving global standards.
  • WHO-GMP standards have been integrated into the revised Schedule M, emphasizing the importance of adhering to international quality benchmarks.
Role in Quality Assurance:
  • GMP plays a pivotal role in maintaining product quality, patient safety, and regulatory compliance.
  • By adhering to GMP, pharmaceutical manufacturers ensure that their processes consistently meet established quality standards.
Continuous Improvement:
  • GMP emphasizes ongoing quality improvement and risk management.
  • Pharmaceutical companies are encouraged to regularly review and enhance their manufacturing processes to achieve higher levels of quality and safety.
Global Impact:
  • GMP is a cornerstone of pharmaceutical regulation worldwide.
  • Its implementation fosters consumer trust, ensures product effectiveness, and safeguards public health.

Rationale Behind Revised GMP Guidelines

Alignment with Global Norms:
  • The introduction of revised Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) guidelines aims to bring the Indian pharmaceutical industry in line with international standards.
  • This step is essential to enhance India’s reputation and competitiveness on the global stage.
Addressing Contamination Concerns:
  • Recent incidents have highlighted alleged contamination issues in products manufactured in India, such as syrups, eye-drops, and eye ointments.
  • Reports of adverse effects and fatalities, such as the deaths of children in the Gambia, Uzbekistan, the United States, and Cameroon, have raised serious concerns.
Identified Deficiencies:
  • Risk-based inspections have identified multiple shortcomings in 162 manufacturing units across India.
  • These deficiencies encompass various aspects, including inadequate raw material testing, absence of product quality reviews, infrastructure limitations, and a shortage of qualified professionals.
Limited WHO-GMP Certification:
  • Presently, out of the 10,500 drug manufacturing units in India, only around 2,000 are certified to meet WHO-GMP standards.
  • This indicates a substantial gap between domestic pharmaceutical practices and globally recognized quality benchmarks.
Ensuring Process Integrity:
  • The enhanced GMP standards aim to compel pharmaceutical companies to adhere to standardized processes and stringent quality control measures.
  • By preventing shortcuts and substandard practices, the quality of medicines available both within India and in the global market is expected to improve.
Boosting Regulatory Confidence:
  • Implementation of uniform quality standards throughout the industry will instill confidence in regulatory bodies from other countries.
  • This harmonization enhances India’s credibility as a reliable and responsible player in the global pharmaceutical arena.
Domestic Impact:
  • The upgraded GMP guidelines will not only benefit the international market but also have a positive impact on the quality of drugs circulating in the domestic market.
  • A majority of the 8,500 non-WHO-GMP certified manufacturing units supply medicines within India.

Revised GMP Guidelines for Pharmaceuticals

Pharmaceutical Quality System and Risk Management:
  • Pharmaceutical Quality System: The updated guidelines introduce a comprehensive pharmaceutical quality system, emphasizing the establishment of a robust quality management system throughout the manufacturing process.
  • Quality Risk Management: Companies are now obligated to implement effective risk management practices. This involves identifying potential risks to product quality and taking proactive measures to mitigate these risks. Regular quality reviews of all products are mandatory to ensure consistent quality and processes.
Stability Studies:
  • Climate-Responsive Stability Studies: A notable change is the requirement for stability studies based on specific climate conditions. Manufacturers must conduct stability tests by subjecting drugs to controlled temperatures and humidity levels in stability chambers. This assessment determines the product’s stability over time.
  • Accelerated Stability Tests: Accelerated stability tests may also be performed to assess a product’s stability under expedited conditions, providing insights into its shelf life and performance.
GMP-Related Computerized Systems:
  • Enhanced Computerized Systems: The revised guidelines emphasize the utilization of computerized systems to manage various GMP-related processes.
  • Data Security and Integrity: These systems are designed to prevent data tampering, unauthorized access, and data omission. By automatically recording all steps and checks, they ensure strict adherence to processes without any tampering.
Investigational Products for Clinical Trials:
  • Expanded Scope: The new guidelines include requirements for additional product types, such as biological products, radioactive agents, and plant-derived products.
  • Clinical Trials Compliance: For investigational products intended for clinical trials, the updated guidelines outline specific requirements to ensure that these products meet the requisite quality and safety standards.

-Source: The Hindu


Recalling ‘Quit India’


Context:

On August 8, 1942 — the people of India launched the decisive final phase of the struggle for independence. It was a mass upsurge against colonial rule on a scale not seen earlier, and it sent out the unmistakable message that the sun was about to set on the British Empire in India.

Relevance:

GS I- Modern History

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Build-up to August 1942
  2. Extent of Mass Participation
  3. Brutal suppression of protests

Build-up to August 1942

  • While factors leading to such a movement had been building up, matters came to a head with the failure of the Cripps Mission.
  • With World War II raging, the beleaguered British government needed the cooperation of its colonial subjects.
  • With this in mind, in March 1942, a mission led by Sir Stafford Cripps arrived in India to meet leaders of the Congress and the Muslim League.
  • The idea was to secure India’s whole-hearted support in the war, and the return offer to Indians was the promise of self-governance.
  • But things did not go that way. Despite the promise of “the earliest possible realisation of self-government in India”, Cripps only offered dominion status, not freedom. Also, there was a provision for the partition of India, which was not acceptable to the Congress.
  • The failure of the Cripps Mission made Gandhi realise that freedom would come only if Indians fought tooth and nail for it.
  • The Congress was initially reluctant to launch a movement that could hamper Britain’s efforts to defeat the fascist forces.
  • But it eventually decided on mass civil disobedience. At the Working Committee meeting in Wardha in July 1942, it was decided the time had come for the movement to move into an active phase.
  • Gandhi made a call to Do or Die in his Quit India speech, followed by the launch of a mass protest demanding what Gandhi called “An Orderly British Withdrawal” from India.
  • Almost the entire leadership of the Indian National Congress was imprisoned without trial within hours of Gandhi’s speech.
The slogan ‘Quit India’
  • While Gandhi gave the clarion call of Quit India, the slogan was coined by Yusuf Meherally, a socialist and trade unionist who also served as Mayor of Bombay.
  • A few years ago, in 1928, it was Meherally who had coined the slogan “Simon Go Back”.

Extent of Mass Participation

  • The participation was on many levels.
  • Youth, especially the students of schools and colleges, remained in the forefront.
  • Women, especially school and college girls, actively participated, and included Aruna Asaf Ali, Sucheta Kripalani and Usha Mehta.
  • Workers went on strikes and faced repression.
  • Peasants of all strata were at the heart of the movement. Even some zamindars participated. These peasants concentrated their offensive on symbols of authority and there was complete absence of anti-zamindar violence.
  • Government officials, especially those belonging to lower levels in police and administration, participated resulting in erosion of government loyalty.
  • Muslims helped by giving shelter to underground activists. There were no communal clashes during the movement.
  • The Communists did not join the movement; in the wake of Russia (where the communists were in power) being attacked by Nazi Germany, the communists began to support the British war against Germany and the ‘Imperialist War’ became the ‘People’s War’
  • The Muslim League opposed the movement, fearing that if the British left India at that time, the minorities would be oppressed by the Hindus.
  • The Hindu Mahasabha boycotted the movement.
  • The Princely states showed a low-key response.
Lack of Unity
  • The British had the support of the Viceroy’s Council (which had a majority of Indians), of the All India Muslim League, the princely states, the Indian Imperial Police, the British Indian Army, the Hindu Mahasabha and the Indian Civil Service.
  • Many Indian businessmen profiting from heavy wartime spending did NOT support the Quit India Movement.
Brutal suppression of protests
  • The Quit India movement was violently suppressed by the British — people were shot and lathicharged, villages were burnt, and backbreaking fines were imposed.
  • In the five months up to December 1942, an estimated 60,000 people had been thrown into jail.
  • However, though the movement was quelled, it changed the character of the Indian freedom struggle, with the masses rising up to demand with a passion and intensity like never before: that the British masters would have to Quit India.

-Source: Indian Express


Import Restrictions on Laptops, Computers, and Components by India’s DGFT


Context:

Recently, India’s Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) has announced that from November 1, 2023, it will restrict the import of laptops, computers, and their components , focusing on items under Harmonised System of Nomenclature (HSN) Code 8471. Restriction shall not be applicable to imports under baggage rules.

Relevance:

GS III: Indian Economy

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Reasons for Imposing Import Restrictions on Electronic Devices
  2. Impact of Import Restrictions on the Market and Consumers
  3. Harmonised System of Nomenclature (HSN)
  4. Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT)

Reasons for Imposing Import Restrictions on Electronic Devices

Promoting Domestic Manufacturing:

  • The primary objective of these restrictions is to encourage and support domestic manufacturing of electronic devices.
  • By limiting imports, the government aims to provide a competitive advantage to local manufacturers, boosting their production capabilities.

Reducing Foreign Reliance:

  • The restrictions target a reduction in dependency on foreign imports, especially from countries like China.
  • This move aligns with the government’s strategy to enhance self-sufficiency and reduce external dependence in critical sectors.

Strengthening Self-Reliance:

  • Imposing import restrictions aligns with the larger goal of achieving self-reliance in India’s technology sector.
  • The government aims to foster indigenous innovation and production to create a more self-sufficient technology ecosystem.

Supporting Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme:

  • The restrictions complement the government’s efforts to bolster domestic production through the revamped PLI scheme for IT hardware.
  • The PLI scheme offers incentives to manufacturers, making it financially attractive to produce within the country.

Enhancing Data Security:

  • The restrictions are aimed at preventing the entry of electronic devices that might pose security risks, potentially compromising sensitive personal and enterprise data.
  • By promoting domestic manufacturing, the government seeks to enhance control over the security of electronic devices.

Fostering Global Expansion:

  • Creating a conducive environment for domestic manufacturers to thrive can help them expand their presence beyond India’s borders.
  • With increased competitiveness, these manufacturers can tap into global markets, boosting the country’s technology exports.

Impact of Import Restrictions on the Market and Consumers

Supply Chain Disruptions:

  • The import restrictions are likely to disrupt the supply chain, leading to potential shortages of certain laptop models and related devices in the market.
  • Consumers may face challenges in finding specific laptop configurations or brands due to reduced availability.

Short-Term Supply Crunch:

  • In the short term, the need for import licenses and approvals may lead to supply shortages and delays in the availability of laptops, tablets, and computers.
  • This could result in higher prices and reduced consumer choices.

Shift towards Domestic Manufacturers:

  • Domestic laptop manufacturers may benefit as consumers may turn to locally produced laptops if imports are limited.
  • This shift could contribute to the growth of domestic manufacturing and boost the “Make in India” initiative.

Incentive for Technological Advancement:

  • The restrictions could encourage domestic manufacturers to invest in research and development, leading to more advanced and competitive laptop products over time.

Impact on Existing Players:

  • Established laptop brands like Dell, HP, Lenovo, Acer, Asus, and Apple, who primarily rely on imports, may face challenges in sourcing products.
  • They may need to adjust their production strategies, potentially leading to changes in pricing and product availability.

Opportunities for New Entrants:

  • The import restrictions could open doors for new entrants and local manufacturers to enter the laptop market.
  • Companies taking advantage of the PLI scheme could introduce competitive products at competitive prices.

Long-Term Self-Reliance:

  • Over time, the restrictions may contribute to India’s self-reliance in the technology sector, fostering domestic manufacturing capabilities.

Consumer Choices and Prices:

  • Consumers might experience limited choices and potentially higher prices for laptops and related devices due to supply disruptions.

Harmonised System of Nomenclature (HSN)

The Harmonised System of Nomenclature (HSN) is an international classification system used for categorizing and identifying traded products. It involves assigning a unique code to each product, facilitating uniformity and accuracy in international trade documentation and customs procedures.

Key Features of HSN:
  • Unique Product Codes: HSN assigns distinct codes to products based on their characteristics, materials, and uses. This helps in precise identification and classification.
  • Customs and Tariffs: Customs authorities across the globe use HSN codes to determine applicable tariffs and duties on imported goods. The codes provide a standardized basis for calculating taxes.
  • Trade Documentation: Traders and exporters use HSN codes to declare their goods during customs clearance. It helps streamline the import and export process and ensures accurate documentation.
  • Rules of Origin: HSN codes play a role in determining the origin of products, which is crucial for applying preferential trade agreements and trade policies.
  • World Customs Organization (WCO): The HSN system was developed and is maintained by the World Customs Organization, an international body that facilitates cooperation and standardization in customs matters.
  • Periodic Updates: HSN codes are periodically updated to accommodate changes in technology, industry practices, and product classifications. These updates ensure that the system remains relevant and accurate.

Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT):

The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) is a government agency responsible for formulating and implementing India’s foreign trade policy. It operates under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry and plays a crucial role in regulating and promoting India’s international trade activities.

Functions of DGFT:
  • Trade Policy Formulation: DGFT formulates and reviews trade policies, export-import procedures, and incentives to enhance India’s foreign trade.
  • Licensing and Authorizations: DGFT issues licenses, authorizations, and certificates to exporters and importers for various trade-related activities.
  • Trade Promotion: DGFT promotes Indian goods and services in global markets, facilitating market access and exports.
  • Coordination: DGFT collaborates with other government departments, ministries, and organizations to address trade-related issues and concerns.
  • Guidance and Assistance: DGFT provides guidance and assistance to exporters and importers, helping them navigate trade regulations and procedures.
  • Foreign Trade Schemes: DGFT administers and oversees various foreign trade schemes and incentives aimed at promoting exports and imports.

-Source: The Hindu


Genetic Diversity Across the Indian Subcontinent


Context:

Recently, a study by Institute for Human Genetics, University of California, has found stark genetic differences between people from different regions of the Indian subcontinent.

Relevance:

GS III: Science and Technology

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Methodology of the Genetic Diversity Study
  2. Key Findings of the Genetic Diversity Study

Methodology of the Genetic Diversity Study

The study conducted by the Institute for Human Genetics at the University of California utilized a robust methodology involving DNA analysis and whole-genome sequencing to investigate genetic diversity across the Indian subcontinent.

Here are the key aspects of the methodology:

Sample Collection:
  • Diverse Cohort: The researchers collected DNA samples from a diverse cohort of approximately 5,000 individuals. This cohort represented populations from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, as well as select communities from Malay, Tibetan, and other South-Asian regions.
DNA Analysis:
  • Whole-Genome Sequencing: The primary technique employed in the study was Whole-Genome Sequencing (WGS). This advanced genetic analysis method involves sequencing the entire DNA content of an individual’s genome.
  • Genetic Variations: The researchers meticulously examined each individual’s DNA for variations, which encompassed changes, deletions, insertions, and substitutions of DNA base pairs, often referred to as ‘letters.’
  • Data Collection and Comparison: The genetic data obtained from the samples were meticulously collected and compared, allowing the researchers to identify and analyze the genetic differences and variations among the studied populations.
Data Interpretation:
  • Comparative Analysis: The collected genetic data were subjected to rigorous comparative analysis. This involved comparing the sequences of DNA base pairs among different individuals and populations.
  • Identification of Differences: The analysis focused on identifying instances where DNA exhibited changes, deletions, or additions of base pairs. These genetic variations are indicative of the unique genetic makeup of different populations.
Findings and Conclusions:
  • Genetic Signatures: By analyzing the genetic variations, the researchers were able to discern distinctive genetic signatures associated with various regions and communities within the Indian subcontinent.
  • Interpretation: The observed genetic differences were interpreted in the context of historical migrations, cultural interactions, and geographical factors that have shaped the genetic diversity of the populations studied.
Significance and Implications:
  • Insights into Genetic Diversity: The methodology employed in this study provided valuable insights into the genetic diversity, admixture, and historical evolution of populations across the Indian subcontinent.
  • Scientific Understanding: The comprehensive analysis of DNA variations contributes to the scientific understanding of human genetic diversity, migration patterns, and historical interactions within the region.

Key Findings of the Genetic Diversity Study

The study conducted by the Institute for Human Genetics at the University of California yielded several significant findings that shed light on the genetic diversity and population dynamics within the Indian subcontinent.

Limited Mixing and Endogamous Practices:
  • Limited Intercommunity Mixing: The study revealed limited genetic mixing between individuals belonging to different communities within the Indian subcontinent. This suggests a historical trend of relatively isolated genetic groups.
  • Endogamous Practices: The prevalence of endogamous practices, such as caste-based, region-based, and consanguineous (closed relatives) marriages, played a significant role in maintaining distinct genetic patterns at the community level.
Impact of Cultural Factors:
  • Impact of Ideal Mating Scenario: The study contrasted the observed genetic patterns with an ideal scenario of random mating within a population. In the absence of such random mating, conserved genetic patterns and a higher frequency of certain genetic variants linked to disorders were identified.
  • Higher Frequency of Homozygous Genotypes: Compared to a relatively outbred population like that of Taiwan, the South Asian cohort, particularly South-Indian and Pakistani subgroups, exhibited a higher frequency of homozygous genotypes. This could be attributed to cultural factors influencing mate selection.
Inbreeding and Genetic Variants:
  • Degree of Inbreeding: The South-Indian and Pakistani subgroups displayed a higher degree of inbreeding, contributing to the observed genetic patterns. In contrast, the Bengali subgroup exhibited lower levels of inbreeding.
  • Unique and Disruptive Variants: The study identified a higher number of genetic variants in the South Asian cohort that have the potential to disrupt gene functioning. Additionally, the presence of unique variants not found in European individuals underscores the distinct genetic landscape of the Indian subcontinent.
Health Implications:
  • Risk of Disorders: The presence of rare homozygous variants was associated with an increased risk of various disorders, including cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancers, and mental disorders. These findings highlight the potential health implications of specific genetic patterns.

-Source: The Hindu


Digital India RISC-V (DIR-V) Program


Context:

Recently, the Union Minister of Electronics & IT addressed the Digital India RISC-V (DIR-V) Symposium organized by IIT Madras in Chennai.

Relevance:

GS III: Science and Technology

Dimension of this Article:

  1. Digital India RISC-V (DIR-V) Program
  2. Unveiling RISC-V
  3. Center for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC)

Digital India RISC-V (DIR-V) Program

  • The Digital India RISC-V (DIR-V) Program stands as a visionary initiative aimed at elevating India’s semiconductor ecosystem to new heights.
  • With a primary focus on cultivating homegrown innovation in the microprocessor domain, DIR-V sets the stage for self-reliance and technological advancement.
  • Guided by the pillars of innovation, functionality, and performance, the program charts a course toward the future. Here’s an overview of this transformative endeavor:
Program Objectives:
  • Empowering Indigenous Innovation: At its core, the DIR-V Program seeks to empower India’s semiconductor capabilities, nurturing the development of cutting-edge microprocessors within the country.
  • Foundation for Self-Reliance: A pivotal goal of DIR-V is to establish a solid foundation for self-reliance in microprocessor technology, reducing dependence on external sources.
Navigating Complex Digital Realities:
  • Addressing Silicon Chip Demand: Acknowledging the escalating demand for silicon chips in the digital era, DIR-V is poised to address the critical need for high-quality microprocessors.
  • Anticipating Technological Shifts: As emerging technologies like 5G and 6G reshape the digital landscape, DIR-V foresees diverse applications across cloud services, Internet of Things (IoT), sensors, and more.
Integral Role in High-Performance Computing:
  • Strategic Centralization: DIR-V strategically positions itself at the core of India’s ambitious high-performance computing aspirations, contributing to the advancement of computational capabilities.
  • Synergistic Collaborations: Through strategic collaborations, including partnerships with esteemed institutions like the Center for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), DIR-V plays a pivotal role in realizing these ambitious objectives.

Unveiling RISC-V:

  • RISC-V is an open-source hardware Instruction Set Architecture (ISA) denoting “reduced instruction set computer” and the 5th generation (V).
  • It empowers the development of custom processors catering to diverse applications, expediting time to market and software development.
  • RISC-V processors find applications in wearables, IoT, smartphones, aerospace, and more, offering efficiency, customization, and security.

Center for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC):

  • C-DAC, a pioneering R&D institution under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), specializes in IT and Electronics.
  • Established in 1988, C-DAC played a crucial role in developing India’s first supercomputers.
  • Its continuous innovation and expertise deployment align with India’s IT revolution, fostering IT products and solutions in line with national policies and market demands.

-Source: The Hindu


River Devika Rejuvenation Project


Context:

Recently, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology sheds light on the progress of the River Rejuvenation Project, Devika. This initiative, inspired by the Namami Ganga campaign, aims to safeguard the sacred Devika River’s purity and health.

Relevance:

GS I: Geography

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. River Devika Rejuvenation Project
  2. About Devika River

River Devika Rejuvenation Project

Comprehensive Waste Management:
  • Focus on Liquid Waste Management.
  • Creation of a network of pipes and manholes connecting households.
  • Objective: Efficient disposal of liquid waste, preventing pollution, and preserving the sanctity of the river.
Complementary Solid Waste Management:
  • Encompasses responsible collection, disposal, and management of solid waste.
  • Essential to prevent environmental degradation and maintain river and surrounding health.
Financial Allocation Breakdown:
  • Project investment exceeds Rs 190 crores.
  • Allocation shared between Central and Union Territory (UT) at a 90:10 ratio.
Empowering Communities through PRIs:
  • Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) pivotal for grassroots project success.
  • PRIs’ involvement enhances community engagement, fosters ownership, and promotes sustainable development practices.

About Devika River:

  • Originates from Suddha Mahadev temple in Jammu and Kashmir’s Udhampur district.
  • Flows through western Punjab (now Pakistan) where it merges with the Ravi River.
Cultural Significance:
  • Revered by Hindus as sister of the Ganga River.
  • Devika River believed to be a manifestation of Goddess Parwati, benefiting the people of Mader Desha (areas between river Ravi and Chenab).

-Source: Indian Express


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