General Knowledge Current Affairs

Friday, December 22, 2023

Programmes under Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana

The Department of Fisheries, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying is implementing a flagship scheme namely Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) with an investment of ₹20050 crore in all the States and Union Territories (UTs) for a period of 5 years with effect from the financial year 2020-21 to FY 2024-25 for holistic development of the fisheries sector in the country. Under this scheme, during the last three financial years (FY 2020-21 to 2022-23), and current financial year (2023-24), fisheries developmental projects of various State Governments, Union Territories and other implementing agencies amounting to of Rs. 17118.62 crore have been approved for overall development of fisheries and aquaculture sector in the country.

The Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) is designed and implemented to address critical gaps in fish production and productivity, quality, technology, post-harvest infrastructure and management and modernization and strengthening of value chain, traceability, and quality improvement. To modernize and strengthen the fisheries value chain, PMMSY supports the creation of post-harvest infrastructure such as fishing harbors/fish landing centers, cold storages and ice plants, fish transportation vehicles including refrigerated and insulated vehicles, ice flaking and ice crushing units, ice/fish holding boxes, etc. with motorcycles, bicycles and auto rickshaws, value addition enterprise units as well as modern hygienic markets such as wholesale fish markets including supermarkets, retail fish markets and outlets, mobile fish and live fish markets. So far, under PMMSY investments worth Rs. 4005.96 crore have been approved for the above-listed activities during the last three financial years (FY 2020-21 to 2022-23), and current financial year (2023-24).

PMMSY provides for establishment of a robust fisheries management framework and provides need-based support to States/UTs for formulation and implementation of fisheries management plans. Besides, the PMMSY promotes aquaculture, mariculture and post-harvest management and also various economic activities in fisheries, aiming towards enhancement of income and improve the socio-economic condition of fishers and other stakeholders associated with fisheries sector. Under PMMSY financial assistance for livelihood and nutritional support are being provided to 6.0 lakh annually for traditional and socio-economically backward, eligible active marine and inland fishermen families during the fishing ban period, vis-à-vis PMMSY supports insurance coverage to 33.20 lakh fishers and also supports interest subvention scheme for fishing vessels. Additionally under PMMSY 20823.40 hectares of pond area for inland aquaculture, 3942 Biofloc units, 11927 Nos. of Re-circulatory Aquaculture Systems (RAS), 44,408 reservoir cages and 543.7 hectares pens in reservoirs, 1,11,110 units of seaweed rafts and monoline units, 1489 bivalve cultivation units, 562 cold storages, 6542 fish kiosks, 108 value added enterprise units and 25,193 post harvest transportation units have been approved for promotion of aquaculture, mariculture and post-harvest management activities.

Friday, December 1, 2023

Quantum Technology: Future of Industry and Jobs

In recent years, quantum technology has emerged as a fascinating field with the potential to revolutionize various industries. This cutting-edge technology harnesses the principles of quantum mechanics to process information and perform computations at an unprecedented scale. With its immense computing power and advanced capabilities, quantum technology holds the key to solving complex problems that are currently beyond the reach of classical computers. In this article, we will explore the exciting potential of quantum technology and its implications for the future of industry and jobs.

Understanding Quantum Technology

Quantum technology is based on the principles of quantum mechanics, a branch of physics that explains the behavior of matter and energy at the atomic and subatomic levels. Unlike classical computers that rely on binary digits or bits (0s and 1s), quantum technology leverages quantum bits or qubits, which can exist in multiple states simultaneously thanks to a phenomenon called superposition.

Quantum Computing: Unleashing Unprecedented Power

Quantum computing is one of the most promising applications of quantum technology. By harnessing the power of qubits, quantum computers can solve complex problems exponentially faster than classical computers. This has significant implications for various industries, such as drug discovery, optimization, and financial modeling, where large-scale computations are required.

Quantum Cryptography: Enhancing Data Security

Data security is a paramount concern in today's interconnected world. Quantum cryptography provides a solution by leveraging the unique properties of quantum mechanics to secure communication channels. Quantum encryption algorithms offer unparalleled protection against eavesdropping and hacking attempts, ensuring the confidentiality of sensitive information.

Quantum Sensing: Unlocking New Frontiers

Quantum sensing involves using quantum technology to measure and detect physical quantities with unparalleled precision. This has applications in fields such as navigation, imaging, and environmental monitoring. Quantum sensors can provide accurate and real-time data, enabling advancements in areas like self-driving cars, medical diagnostics, and earthquake detection.

Quantum Simulation: Advancing Scientific Discovery

Simulating complex quantum systems is an arduous task for classical computers. Quantum simulation, powered by quantum technology, allows scientists to simulate and understand the behavior of quantum systems more effectively. This has the potential to revolutionize materials science, drug design, and fundamental physics research.

Quantum Communication: Enabling Secure Information Transfer

In an era where information is transmitted globally, secure communication is of utmost importance. Quantum communication, facilitated by quantum technology, provides a way to transmit information securely through quantum key distribution. This technology ensures that any interception or tampering attempts are immediately detectable, safeguarding sensitive data during transmission.

Quantum Technology and Industry: Transforming Key Sectors

Quantum technology has the potential to revolutionize several key industries. In the healthcare sector, quantum computing can accelerate drug discovery, enable personalized medicine, and optimize healthcare logistics. In finance, quantum algorithms can enhance portfolio optimization, risk analysis, and fraud detection. Additionally, quantum sensing can revolutionize navigation, enabling precise location tracking for autonomous vehicles and drones.

Quantum Technology and Jobs: Creating New Opportunities

As quantum technology continues to advance, it will create new job opportunities across various sectors. Quantum scientists, engineers, and researchers will be in high demand to develop and optimize quantum hardware and software. Additionally, industries will require professionals skilled in harnessing quantum technology to address complex challenges and drive innovation.

Challenges and Limitations of Quantum Technology

Despite its immense potential, quantum technology faces several challenges and limitations. One major obstacle is the delicate nature of qubits, which are highly sensitive to environmental disturbances. Maintaining qubit stability and reducing errors is crucial for practical quantum computing. Additionally, scaling up quantum systems to handle large-scale problems remains a significant technical challenge.

Ethical Considerations and Future Developments

As with any emerging technology, quantum technology raises ethical considerations. Quantum computers, if developed at scale, could potentially break current encryption methods, posing risks to data security. It is essential to address these concerns proactively and develop robust security measures. Looking ahead, researchers are exploring hybrid approaches that combine classical and quantum computing to overcome current limitations.


Quantum technology is poised to revolutionize the future of industry and jobs. Its applications span across various sectors, offering unprecedented computing power, enhanced data security, precise sensing capabilities, and secure communication channels. As this field continues to advance, it is crucial to address technical challenges, ethical concerns, and develop a skilled workforce to unlock the full potential of quantum technology.


Q. How does quantum technology differ from classical technology?
Quantum technology relies on the principles of quantum mechanics, enabling the processing of information and computations at a scale beyond the capabilities of classical technology. It harnesses the unique properties of quantum systems, such as superposition and entanglement, to achieve remarkable advancements.

Q. What industries can benefit from quantum technology?
Quantum technology has applications across various industries, including healthcare, finance, transportation, telecommunications, and materials science. It can revolutionize drug discovery, optimize financial modeling, enhance navigation systems, and secure communication channels, among many other possibilities.

Q. Will quantum technology replace classical computers?
Quantum technology is not expected to replace classical computers entirely. Instead, it complements classical computing by tackling complex problems that are currently infeasible for classical computers. Quantum computers excel in solving certain types of problems, while classical computers remain efficient for everyday computing tasks.

Q. Are there any limitations to quantum technology?
Yes, quantum technology faces challenges such as qubit stability, environmental disturbances, and scalability. Maintaining the delicate nature of qubits and reducing errors is crucial for practical quantum computing. Scaling up quantum systems to handle large-scale problems is an ongoing technical challenge.

Q. How can individuals prepare for the future of quantum technology?
To prepare for the future of quantum technology, individuals can consider pursuing careers in quantum science, engineering, and research. Developing expertise in quantum algorithms, quantum software development, and quantum hardware optimization will be in high demand as the field continues to evolve.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Ensuring Human Security in Today's World: A Comprehensive Overview

In an increasingly digital and interconnected world, the concept of security has extended far beyond traditional notions of physical safety. Human security encompasses a broad spectrum of concerns, from personal safety to economic stability and individual rights. At its core, it aims to safeguard the well-being and dignity of individuals, emphasizing the protection of human lives from various threats.

Understanding Human Security

The term 'human security' emerged to address the evolving landscape of challenges that affect individuals worldwide. It delves beyond national security frameworks, focusing on the protection of individuals rather than just states. This holistic approach considers threats such as poverty, hunger, disease, and environmental degradation alongside traditional security concerns like conflict and violence.

Dimensions of Human Security

Human security encompasses multiple dimensions, each essential in safeguarding individuals:

  • Economic Security: Ensuring access to basic resources, employment, and financial stability.
  • Food Security: Addressing issues related to hunger, malnutrition, and access to sufficient and nutritious food.
  • Health Security: Providing healthcare services and disease prevention measures.
  • Environmental Security: Mitigating the impact of environmental degradation and climate change on communities.
  • Personal Security: Protecting individuals from physical violence, crime, and human rights abuses.
  • Community Security: Promoting social cohesion and stability within communities.

Challenges to Human Security

Numerous global challenges threaten the realization of comprehensive human security:

Economic Disparities

Persistent economic disparities create barriers to achieving human security. Poverty, lack of access to education, and unemployment can lead to a multitude of insecurities, impacting various aspects of an individual's life.

Climate Change and Environmental Degradation

Rapid climate change and environmental degradation pose severe threats to human security. From natural disasters to resource scarcity, these issues directly impact the well-being of individuals and communities.

Health Emergencies

Health crises, such as pandemics or widespread diseases, significantly challenge human security. They disrupt lives, healthcare systems, and economic stability, underscoring the interconnected nature of security concerns.

Protecting Human Security

Addressing these challenges and ensuring human security demands a collective, multi-faceted approach:

Policy and Governance

Effective policies and governance play a pivotal role in safeguarding human security. It involves initiatives that address economic inequalities, strengthen healthcare systems, and mitigate environmental risks.

International Cooperation

Collaboration among nations and international organizations is vital in addressing global challenges that affect human security. Joint efforts in disaster relief, healthcare provisions, and conflict resolution contribute to a more secure world.

Empowering Communities

Empowering communities to address their own security concerns is fundamental. Local initiatives, support for education, and promoting inclusivity and diversity within societies play a significant role in enhancing human security.


Human security stands as a multifaceted concept, addressing diverse threats that affect individuals globally. Embracing a holistic approach that accounts for economic, environmental, and personal dimensions is crucial in ensuring the safety and well-being of people.

Monday, October 9, 2023

The Nobel Peace Prize 2023

The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize 2023 to Narges Mohammadi for her fight against the oppression of women in Iran and her fight to promote human rights and freedom for all.

This year's peace prize also recognises the hundreds of thousands of people who, in the preceding year, have demonstrated against Iran's theocratic regime's policies of discrimination and oppression targeting women. The motto adopted by the demonstrators - "Woman - Life - Freedom" - suitably expresses the dedication and work of Narges Mohammadi.

Narges Mohammadi is a woman, a human rights advocate, and a freedom fighter. Her brave struggle for freedom of expression and the right of independence has come with tremendous personal costs. Altogether, the regime in Iran has arrested her 13 times, convicted her five times, and sentenced her to a total of 31 years in prison and 154 lashes. Narges Mohammadi is still in prison.

Friday, October 6, 2023

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2023

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2023 is awarded to the Norwegian author Jon Fosse, “for his innovative plays and prose which give voice to the unsayable.”

His immense oeuvre written in Norwegian Nynorsk and spanning a variety of genres consists of a wealth of plays, novels, poetry collections, essays, children’s books, and translations. While he is today one of the most widely performed playwrights in the world, he has also become increasingly recognised for his prose.

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2023

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2023 was awarded to Moungi G. Bawendi, Louis E. Brus and Alexei I. Ekimov "for the discovery and synthesis of quantum dots".

Physicists had long known that in theory, size-dependent quantum effects could arise in nanoparticles, but at that time it was almost impossible to sculpt in nano dimensions. Therefore, few people believed that this knowledge would be put to practical use.

However, in the early 1980s, Alexei Ekimov succeeded in creating size-dependent quantum effects in coloured glass. The colour came from nanoparticles of copper chloride and Ekimov demonstrated that the particle size affected the colour of the glass via quantum effects.

A few years later, Louis Brus was the first scientist in the world to prove size-dependent quantum effects in particles floating freely in a fluid.

In 1993, Moungi Bawendi revolutionised the chemical production of quantum dots, resulting in almost perfect particles. This high quality was necessary for them to be utilised in applications.

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2023

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2023 was awarded jointly to Pierre Agostini, Ferenc Krausz, and Anne L’Huillier "for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter".

The three Nobel Prize laureates in Physics 2023 are being recognized for their experiments, which have given humanity new tools for exploring the world of electrons inside atoms and molecules. They have demonstrated a way to create extremely short pulses of light that can be used to measure the rapid processes in which electrons move or change energy.

Pierre Agostini (Affiliation at the time of the award: The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA): Prize motivation: “for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter”

Ferenc Krausz (Affiliation at the time of the award: Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, Garching, Germany; Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Munich, Germany): “for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter”

Anne L’Huillier (Affiliation at the time of the award: Lund University, Lund, Sweden): “for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter”

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2023

The Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institutet has decided to award the 2023 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine jointly to Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman “for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19.”

The discoveries by the two Nobel Prize laureates were critical for developing effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19 during the pandemic that began in early 2020. Through their groundbreaking findings, which have fundamentally changed our understanding of how mRNA interacts with our immune system, the laureates contributed to the unprecedented rate of vaccine development during one of the greatest threats to human health in modern times.

 Image Courtesy: The Nobel Committe for Physiology or Medicine. Ill. Mattias Karlén

Katalin Karikó (Affiliation at the time of the award: Szeged University, Szeged, Hungary; University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA): “for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19”.

Drew Weissman (Affiliation at the time of the award: Penn Institute for RNA Innovations, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA): “for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19”.

Thursday, October 5, 2023

India wins bid to host 17th International Congress on the Chemistry of Cement

India has won the bid to host the prestigious International Congress on the Chemistry of Cement (ICCC) at New Delhi in 2027. India’s leading research and academic institutes, National Council for Cement and Building Materials (NCCBM) along with IIT Delhi successfully presented the India’s bid before the Steering Committee members of the Conference during the ongoing 16th ICCC at Bangkok, Thailand. Besides India, other bidders were from Switzerland and UAE. The decision was announced on 20th September 2023 at Bangkok, Thailand during the 16th ICCC. The Indian bid was presented by Dr L P Singh, Director General, NCCBM, Dr S K Chaturvedi, Joint Director, NCCBM and Dr Shashank Bishnoi, Professor (Civil Engg.), IIT Delhi.

The International Congress on the Chemistry of Cement is the largest and most prestigious event of its kind which reviews the progress of research in the area of Cement and Concrete. The congresses have been held generally at intervals of four to six years since 1918, providing a strong and fruitful link between the academic world and the cement industry. The 9th Congress was organized at New Delhi in 1992 by NCCBM and the present 16th ICCC is being held at Bangkok, Thailand from 18-22 September 2023.

Hosting this esteemed event in India provides us with a unique opportunity to bring together the leading leaders, experts, and innovators in cement sector from around the world. This event is not only a testament to our research and academic organization's capabilities but also a chance to showcase our vibrant city New Delhi to the global cement and concrete industry. New Delhi, as a host city, will be poised to offer an unforgettable experience to all attendees of 17th ICCC in 2027 with its world-class conference facilities like Bharat Mandapam and Yashobhoomi, rich cultural heritage, and exceptional hospitality.

National Council for Cement and Building Materials (NCCBM) is an apex Research and Development organization under the administrative control of DPIIT, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India. NCCBM is dedicated to research, technology development & transfer, education & industrial services for cement, allied building materials & construction industries. NCCBM has a proven track record of executing biennial NCB International Seminars/Conferences of similar magnitude, ensuring a seamless and memorable experience for all participants from across the globe.


India is the fifth largest economy today and is likely to become third largest by the next five years and its cement industry is second largest in the world with installed cement capacity of 600 million tonnes. The cement industry in India plays a key role in circular economy framework in the country by utilizing various industrial wastes and is having one of the lowest CO2 footprints and most energy efficient in the world. The booming infrastructure development, resources, and expertise available within India make it a perfect backdrop to bring together thought leaders, academics, cement and concrete professionals, and enthusiasts to exchange ideas and drive progress. The experience and framework of Indian cement industry for addressing local and global issues such as decarbonisation, sustainable development, circular economy in operation, energy security, alternate energy sources, low carbon cements and so on provide an ideal modal for deliberations and showcasing to global leaders and technocrats for the benefits of global society at large.

Saturday, September 30, 2023

What is the G20 and how does it work

In the dynamic world of international economics and diplomacy, the G20 has emerged as a formidable force. Its inception in 1999, born out of the crucible of the Asian financial crisis of 1997-98, marked the beginning of a unique forum. Originally designed as an informal platform for finance ministers and central bank governors, it has since evolved into an influential assembly that includes the heads of state of member countries, especially in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis.

The Evolution of G20

Origins and Expansion

The G20's genesis can be traced back to the turbulent times of 1999 when it was established as a response to the financial upheaval that had gripped Asia. Initially, it served as an informal gathering of finance ministers and central bank governors, offering them a platform to discuss crucial financial matters. This exclusive club comprised representatives from both developed and developing economies, fostering a sense of collaboration among diverse nations.

However, it was the seismic shockwaves of the global financial crisis in 2008 that catapulted the G20 onto the world stage. Recognizing the need for a more comprehensive approach to tackle economic challenges, the G20 expanded its membership to include the heads of state of member countries. This transformation elevated it to a leader's summit, where critical decisions were made to stabilize the global economy.

The Troika System

One of the unique features of the G20 is its Presidency rotation system, known as the troika system. This system involves three countries: the current host, the previous host, and the next host. It ensures continuity and a smooth transition of leadership. In 2022, India took the helm of the G20 Presidency from Indonesia, the outgoing member of the troika. As of now, Brazil has assumed the Presidency, taking the baton from India as the next troika country.

Unpacking the Mechanics of G20

The G20 operates through three key tracks, each playing a crucial role in shaping international economic policies and diplomatic initiatives:

Finance Track

Led by finance ministers and central bank governors, the Finance Track serves as the economic engine of the G20. This track convenes approximately four times a year to deliberate on pressing fiscal and monetary policy issues. Its scope extends to topics like the global economy, infrastructure development, financial regulation, financial inclusion, international financial architecture, and international taxation. Within the Finance Track, several working groups dissect these matters in greater detail. These include:

  • Framework Group: Focused on establishing a cohesive framework for economic cooperation among member nations.
  • International Financial Architecture: Discussing the structural aspects of the global financial system.
  • Infrastructure Group: Addressing infrastructure development, a key driver of economic growth.
  • Sustainable Finance: Promoting sustainable financial practices to safeguard the planet.
  • Financial Inclusion: Ensuring that financial services are accessible to all.
  • Finance and Health: Exploring the intersection of finance and public health.
  • International Taxation: Delving into cross-border taxation challenges.
  • Financial Sector Matters: Analyzing issues related to the financial sector.

Sherpa Track

Established in 2008, the Sherpa Track is an integral component of the G20, comprising representatives of heads of state. It tackles a broad spectrum of socioeconomic concerns that have a direct impact on global prosperity. The Sherpa Track explores areas such as agriculture, anti-corruption, climate change, the digital economy, education, employment, energy, environment, health, tourism, trade, and investment. Each representative in this track is referred to as a Sherpa, and there are 13 working groups that delve into these crucial areas:

  • Agriculture: Focusing on sustainable agricultural practices.
  • Anti-corruption: Combating corruption for transparent governance.
  • Culture: Promoting cultural exchange and understanding.
  • Development: Addressing global development challenges.
  • Digital Economy: Navigating the complexities of the digital age.
  • Disaster Risk Reduction: Mitigating the impact of natural disasters.
  • Education: Empowering individuals through education.
  • Employment: Enhancing global employment opportunities.
  • Energy Transitions: Advancing clean and sustainable energy solutions.
  • Environment and Climate Sustainability: Combating climate change and preserving the environment.
  • Health: Promoting global health and well-being.
  • Tourism: Enhancing the tourism industry's role in economic growth.
  • Trade and Investment: Facilitating international trade and investment.

Engagement Groups

Beyond the official tracks, the G20 incorporates non-governmental participants and engagement groups. These groups offer valuable recommendations that contribute to policy-making. The Engagement Groups encompass a diverse range of voices, including:

  • Business20: Representing the business community.
  • Civil20: Advocating for civil society and human rights.
  • Labour20: Focusing on labor and workers' rights.
  • Parliament20: Bridging the gap between legislatures and the G20.
  • Science20: Leveraging scientific expertise for informed decision-making.
  • SAI20: Strengthening the role of supreme audit institutions.
  • Startup20: Nurturing innovation and entrepreneurship.
  • Think20: Providing intellectual insights and policy recommendations.
  • Urban20: Addressing urban challenges and opportunities.
  • Women20: Promoting gender equality and women's empowerment.
  • Youth20: Amplifying the voices of young leaders.

In conclusion, the G20 is a dynamic forum that has evolved significantly since its inception in 1999. From addressing financial crises to becoming a key platform for international economic cooperation, it has played a pivotal role in shaping the global economic landscape. With its diverse tracks and engagement groups, the G20 continues to foster collaboration and innovation, making it a critical player in addressing the challenges of the 21st century.

Friday, September 29, 2023

G20 Summit 2023 and its outcome

The G20 Summit 2023 was the 18th meeting of the Group of Twenty, an international forum that includes 19 of the world’s largest economies and the European Union. The summit was held in New Delhi, India, from September 9 to 10, 2023, under the theme of “One Earth, One Family, One Future”. It was the first G20 summit to be hosted by India, which assumed the presidency of the G20 from December 1, 2022 to November 30, 2023.

Some of the major outcomes of the summit are:

  • The New Delhi Declaration: This was a document that contained 83 paragraphs of consensus among all G20 members on various issues, such as global health, economic recovery, climate change, digital transformation, multilateralism, and international security. The declaration also addressed the conflict in Ukraine and called for a peaceful resolution through dialogue and diplomacy.
  • The Climate Action Plan: This was a plan that reaffirmed the commitment of all G20 members to the Paris Agreement and its goals of limiting global warming to well below 2°C and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5°C. The plan also outlined concrete actions and targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, enhancing adaptation and resilience, mobilizing finance and technology, and promoting green development and lifestyle.
  • The Global Minimum Tax: This was an agreement that endorsed the proposal of a global minimum tax rate of at least 15% for multinational corporations, as part of the broader efforts to reform the international tax system and ensure a fair and level playing field. The agreement also aimed to address the challenges posed by the digitalization of the economy and ensure that profits are taxed where economic activities occur and value is created.
  • The Digital Public Infrastructure: This was an initiative that proposed to create a common digital platform for delivering public services and enhancing financial inclusion, based on the successful experience of India’s Aadhaar system. The initiative also aimed to foster cooperation and innovation in areas such as artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, data governance, and digital literacy.

These are some of the highlights of the G20 Summit 2023 and its outcomes.

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

XV BRICS Summit 2023: Theme and Priorities

South Africa became Chair of BRICS on 1 January 2023 under the theme: “BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Mutually Accelerated Growth, Sustainable Development, and Inclusive Multilateralism”. The theme informs the Chair’s five priorities for 2023:

Developing a partnership towards an equitable Just Transition:

There is no part of the world that is not feeling the dramatic changes to climate and extreme weather events. Tackling climate change requires urgent, significant, and transformational changes across all sectors of the economy. Opportunities need to be explored to manage the risks associated with climate change while still improving the lives and futures of those people employed under the umbrella of targeted industries.

Transforming education and skills development for the future:

Education and continuous skills development are long-term solutions towards development and escaping poverty. Existing cooperation and initiatives towards knowledge creation and exchange must be strengthened to unlock opportunities for the future.

Unlocking opportunities through the African Continental Free Trade Area:

The African Continental Free Trade Area creates a predictable environment for trade and investments in Africa, particularly in infrastructure development. BRICS members are reliable partners for cooperation, trade and development. The partnership between BRICS and Africa must focus on unlocking mutually beneficial opportunities for increased trade, investment, and infrastructure development towards the operationalisation of the African Continental Free Trade Area in line with its priorities and objectives.

Strengthening post-pandemic socio-economic recovery and the attainment of the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development:

The economic plans and strategies must be implemented with a vision of placing BRICS economies at the centre of sustainable global economic growth. Solutions need to be found to accelerate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. Equity, fairness and a recognition of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capacities should underly the response.

Strengthening multilateralism, including working towards real reform of global governance institutions and strengthening the meaningful participation of women in peace processes:

BRICS has a common vision of a more equitable, fair, balanced, just and representative global political, economic and financial system, but faces global resistance by vested interests. Recent reform achievements serve as the foundation for continued efforts to channel the collective BRICS voice and influence where it can make a change. The marginalisation of women in peace processes needs to be addressed. Lasting peace, security and sustainable development cannot be achieved without the inclusion of women in conflict resolution as well as in post-conflict reconstruction.


BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Mutually Accelerated Growth, Sustainable Development and Inclusive Multilateralism

In a rapidly evolving global landscape, partnerships between nations have become essential for fostering economic growth, sustainable development, and multilateral cooperation. One such significant partnership is between the BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) and Africa. This article explores how this collaboration is fostering mutually accelerated growth, sustainable development, and inclusive multilateralism on the African continent.

BRICS and Africa: A Historical Perspective

The Emergence of BRICS

The BRICS bloc came into existence in 2009, initially comprising Brazil, Russia, India, and China. South Africa joined later, expanding the group's global reach. The primary aim was to facilitate cooperation in economic and political spheres.

Historical Ties with Africa

All BRICS nations have historical ties with Africa, dating back to the anti-colonial struggles. These connections laid the foundation for closer collaboration in the 21st century.

Economic Growth Through Investment

Investment Initiatives

BRICS nations have significantly invested in African infrastructure and industries. China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a prime example, with substantial projects spanning across the continent.

Trade and Commerce

Trade between BRICS and Africa has grown steadily. Efforts to reduce trade barriers have opened up new opportunities for African nations to export their goods and resources to BRICS countries.

Sustainable Development and Innovation

Technological Advancements

BRICS nations have shared technological innovations with African partners. This has led to improved healthcare, education, and communication infrastructure.

Agricultural Advancements

Collaboration in agriculture has enhanced food security and agricultural productivity in Africa, contributing to sustainable development.

Inclusive Multilateralism

Diplomacy and Global Governance

BRICS and Africa have joined forces in international forums to address global challenges such as climate change and peacekeeping. This fosters inclusive multilateralism by giving a voice to emerging economies.

South-South Cooperation

Both BRICS and African nations champion South-South cooperation, emphasizing equality and mutual benefit in international relations.

Challenges and Future Prospects

Infrastructure Challenges

Despite progress, challenges remain in ensuring the sustainability of infrastructure projects and addressing issues related to debt.

Geopolitical Considerations

Navigating global power dynamics is crucial to maintaining the integrity of the BRICS-Africa partnership.


The partnership between BRICS and Africa is a testament to the potential of international collaboration in fostering mutually accelerated growth, sustainable development, and inclusive multilateralism. As these nations continue to work together, they set a powerful example for the world.


Q. What is BRICS, and why is it important for Africa?

ANS. BRICS is an acronym for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. It is important for Africa as it represents a significant economic and political partnership that fosters development and cooperation on the continent.

Q. What are some notable BRICS investments in Africa?

ANS. Notable investments include China's Belt and Road Initiative, which involves large-scale infrastructure projects in Africa, and India's contributions to technology and healthcare.

Q. How does the BRICS-Africa partnership contribute to sustainable development?
The partnership contributes to sustainable development through investments in infrastructure, technology transfer, and agricultural advancements that improve living standards and economic growth.

Q. What are the challenges faced by this partnership?
Challenges include addressing infrastructure sustainability, managing debt from investments, and navigating global geopolitical dynamics.

Q. How can other regions learn from BRICS and Africa's collaboration?
Other regions can learn from their emphasis on equality in international relations, technology sharing, and collective efforts to address global challenges.

Friday, September 22, 2023

Global Biofuels Alliance (GBA)

India will show the world a new path on biofuels through the Global Biofuels Alliance, stated Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Housing & Urban Affairs. Expressing his views through a series of posts on the social media platform ‘X’ the Minister noted that following the mantra of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’, this effort of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will definitely reduce the dependence on petrol and diesel across the world.

Creating history in the global energy sector, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi announced the launch of the Global Biofuels Alliance (GBA) on the sidelines of the G20 Summit yesterday. 19 countries and 12 international organizations have already agreed to join the alliance.

GBA is an India-led Initiative to develop an alliance of Governments, International organizations, and Industry to facilitate the adoption of biofuels. Bringing together the biggest consumers and producers of biofuels to drive biofuel development and deployment, the initiative aims to position biofuels as a key to energy transition and contribute to jobs and economic growth.

Shri Hardeep Puri observed that the world’s quest for cleaner & greener energy has gained historic momentum with the launch of GBA on the sidelines of the G20 Summit.

The Indian Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister expressed his gratitude to Ms. Jennifer Granholm, Secretary of the Department of Energy, US; Mr. Alexandre Silveira, Energy Minister of Brazil; & Dr. Evandro Gussi President & CEO of UNICA Brazil for germinating the seeds of forming Global Biofuels Alliance.

Shri Hardeep Singh Puri noted that the visionary Global Biofuels Alliance supported by G20 Nations & energy-related global organizations like the International Energy Agency (IEA), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), World Economic Forum (WEO), and World LPG Association among others will strengthen global biofuels trade & best practices allowing the members to successfully face the Energy Quadrilemma. This will bolster the transformation of our farmers from ‘Annadatas to Urjadatas’ as an additional source of income. In last 9 year we have given ₹71,600 cr to our farmers. With E20 implementation by 2025, India will save about ₹45,000 cr in oil imports & 63 MT of oil annually, he added.

GBA will support the worldwide development and deployment of sustainable biofuels by offering capacity-building exercises across the value chain, technical support for national programs, and promoting policy lessons-sharing. It will facilitate mobilizing a virtual marketplace to assist industries, countries, ecosystem players and key stakeholders in mapping demand and supply, as well as connecting technology providers to end users. It will also facilitate the development, adoption and implementation of internationally recognized standards, codes, sustainability principles and regulations to incentivize biofuels adoption and trade.

The initiative will be beneficial for India on multiple fronts. GBA as a tangible outcome of the G20 presidency, will help strengthen India’s position globally. Moreover, the alliance will focus on collaboration and will provide additional opportunities to Indian industries in the form of exporting technology and exporting equipment. It will help accelerate India’s existing biofuel programs such as PM-JIVANYojna, SATAT, and GOBARdhan scheme, thereby contributing to increased farmers’ income, creating jobs, and overall development of the Indian ecosystem. The global ethanol market was valued at USD 99.06 billion in 2022 and is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 5.1% by 2032 and surpass USD 162.12 billion by 2032. As per IEA, there will be 3.5-5x biofuels growth potential by 2050 due to Net Zero targets, creating a huge opportunity for India.


Bharat becomes the 13th country in world that can issue Internationally Accepted OIML Certificates

OIML is an Intergovernmental organization which was established in 1955. Bharat became its member in 1956. It has 63 Member States and 64 Corresponding Members. Bharat has now become an authority for issuing internationally accepted OIML certificates for selling weights & measures anywhere in the world. To sell a weight or measure in the International market an OIML Pattern Approval certificate is mandatory, which the Department of Consumer Affairs can issue now.

Bharat follows OIML recommendations and procedures for testing and calibration of weights and measures. The reports prepared by the Legal Metrology’s Regional Reference Standards Laboratories are now acceptable to the OIML issuing authorities. Now, Bharat is an authority for issuing OIML pattern approval certificates and can act as a support system for indigenous manufacturers. Domestic manufacturers can now export their weighing and measuring instruments worldwide without incurring additional testing fees, resulting in significant cost savings.

Bharat can also support foreign manufacturers by issuing OIML pattern approval certificates from our certified RRSLs. By issuing the OIML approval certificates of weighing & measuring instruments to the foreign manufacturers Bharat will also generate forex in terms of fees etc.

Bharat may now influence the OIML's policies and provide input to the OIML Strategy. This system allows OIML Certificates issued by OIML Issuing Authorities in OIML Member States to be accepted by other participants as the basis for issuing national or regional type approvals for measuring instruments. The other OIML Members can thus issue national-type approval certificates without the need for expensive test facilities by relying on these certificates.

Bharat now joins an exclusive group of nations, including Australia, Switzerland, China, Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, France, United Kingdom, Japan, Netherlands, Sweden, and Slovakia, as the 13th country worldwide, authorized to issue OIML approval certificates.

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Climate Change and its Impact on the Global Economy

In the contemporary landscape, climate change looms as one of the most formidable global quandaries. Its repercussions reverberate profoundly across our ecosystem, societal fabric, and economic tapestry. While extensive deliberation pertains to the ecological and humanitarian facets of this conundrum, it is paramount to dissect its profound nexus with the worldwide financial system. This discourse embarks on an odyssey to scrutinize the multilayered interplay between climate change and the global economy, delving deep into the myriad channels through which environmental metamorphoses impact sectors like industry, commerce, finance, and the overarching equilibrium of the economic milieu.

The Economic Toll of Climate Flux

Extreme Climatic Manifestations

Climate change increasingly intertwines itself with the emergence of extreme meteorological phenomena, including tempests, parched spells, deluges, and conflagrations. These occurrences, in their wake, unfurl calamitous fiscal repercussions. A stark illustration presents itself in the annals of 2017, wherein hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria wreaked havoc, bequeathing a cataclysmic toll of over $265 billion, thus etching a record as the most exorbitant hurricane season ever documented. The insurance realm shoulders a formidable burden during such cataclysms, engendering a surge in premiums and diminishing economic robustness.

Agriculture and the Citadel of Sustenance

Agriculture, being acutely susceptible to the ravages of climate metamorphosis, stands as a bastion of vulnerability. Altered weather patterns, escalated temperatures, and perturbed precipitation regimes precipitate disarray within crop yields and alimentary production. This menaces not only the global food security paradigm but also begets the tempestuous tempest of price volatility. The dearth of staple harvests begets an ascent in prices, casting a specter upon both consumers and the agricultural domain itself. Moreover, farmers grapple with escalated gambles and ambivalence, subsequently undermining capital infusion and productivity.

The Ascent of Oceanic Boundaries

The elevation in sea levels, an ominous ramification of climate transformation, ensues from the meltdown of ice formations and the thermal dilation of marine waters. Coastal terrains, which domicile a substantial fraction of the global populace, teeter on the brink of inundation. This imparts an imminent menace to property valuations, insurance overheads, and infrastructure perpetuation. The forfeiture of invaluable coastal real estate harbors the potential to incite a financial cataclysm reminiscent of the housing market collapse of 2008.

Health and the Confluence of Productivity

Climate change exercises a tangible imprint upon public health and labor efficiency. The upsurge in heatwaves and the dissemination of vector-borne ailments transcribe an augmented outlay in healthcare and a concomitant decrement in occupational efficacy. As resources increasingly devolve towards healthcare provisioning, economies stand vulnerable to the shackles of growth diminution.

The Odyssey Toward a Verdant Economy

The Luminary Dawn of Renewable Vigor

One of the preeminent ripostes to climate transmutation unfurls as the transition towards a verdant economy, underscored by the valorization of renewable energy founts encompassing solar, zephyr, and hydropower. This transmutation enshrines within it an intricate mosaic of challenges and opportunities for the global fiscal panorama. While the nascent outlays of renewable infrastructure might scale lofty peaks, the long-term gains encompass a diminution in greenhouse gas emissions, the attainment of energy autonomy, and the fecundation of employment avenues. Investiture in clean energy technologies possesses the aptitude to galvanize economic burgeon and innovation.

The Bastion of Energy Efficiency

The edification of energy frugality, spanning the expanse of various industries and sectors, morphs into an imperative pillar in the repertoire of climate amelioration. This paradigm shift requisites investments in research, incubation, and the mainstreaming of energy-efficient technologies. Albeit the presence of transitory pecuniary ramifications, the long-term economies in energy overheads and the curtailment of carbon emissions promulgate a boost to the edifice of economic resilience.

The Tapestry of Verdant Employment

The transition to a carbon-lean economic edifice forebodes the genesis of myriad viridescent vocations. These employments span the spectrum, encompassing realms such as renewable energy, sustainable agrology, and ecologically amicable construction. Through the endowment in workforce tutelage and erudition, nations contrive to arm their citizenry with the acumen indispensable to thrive within the transmuting labor theater, thereby curtailing joblessness and societal incongruity.

The Governmental Imprint

The Canvas of Carbon Valuation

Governments, on a global scale, institute carbon pricing modalities, comprising carbon imposts and cap-and-trade configurations, with the intention of stimulating corporate carbon abatement. While these edicts accrue potentiality in the attenuation of greenhouse gas effluxes, they concurrently cast their shadows upon the competitiveness of particular industries. Striking a harmonious equilibrium betwixt environmental custodianship and fiscal expansion emerges as a formidable tightrope walk for policy crafters.

The Regimen of Regulatory Frameworks

The precincts of regulatory frameworks play an indispensable role in sculpting corporate rejoinders to climate vicissitudes. Stringent environmental strictures might elicit an upswing in compliance disbursements, which certain industries may concomitantly transmit to their clientele. Nevertheless, these structures have the potential to catalyze ingenuity, galvanize ecologically benevolent investments, and kindle market prospects for sustainable wares and services.

The Compact of International Accords

International compacts, exemplified by the Paris Accord, assume a pivotal stance in coordinating global endeavors to combat climate perturbation. These compacts bequeath a structural framework for concertation and the formulation of emission reduction benchmarks. However, the effusiveness of these compacts hinges upon the adherence of participating nations and the efficacy of enforcement mechanisms. The shortfall in the achievement of climate pinnacles carries the specter of diplomatic and fiscal repercussions.

Climate Metamorphosis and Global Barter

The Labyrinth of Supply Chain Disruption

Climate perturbation-associated dislocations, including extreme meteorological events and the upthrust of sea levels, possess the capacity to upheave worldwide supply networks. This frailty attained glaring limelight during the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic when supply chains confronted formidable duress. Climate-associated disruptions can precipitate an ascent in manufacturing expenditures, a diminution in operational efficiency, and tardiness in the provisioning of goods and amenities. These byproducts in turn impinge upon trade courses and fiscal equilibrium.

Agriculture and the World of Commerce

Alterations in meteorological patterns proffer ramifications for agrarian productivity, which, in a domino effect, echo across the labyrinthine contours of global alimentary trade. Countries reliant on exportation may confront fiscal encumbrances if they falter in fulfilling their export commitments due to dwindling crop yields. Import-reliant nations may grapple with shortages in edibles and spiraling price points, potentially catalyzing sociopolitical instability.

The Looming Specter of Resource Scarcity

Climate change possesses the wherewithal to exacerbate the scarcity of resources, spanning realms like water deficits and the depletion of natural endowments. This paves the way for rivalries and conflagrations over access to indispensable resources, thereby rending asunder the scaffolding of global trade and fiscal equilibrium. In addition, resource dearth can propel the upswing in the outlays of resource-intensive industries, thereby imprinting an indelible seal upon economic burgeon.

The Perils Encountered by the Financial Sphere

The Quandary of Stranded Holdings

As the globe navigates towards renewable vigor and a low-carbon economic modality, fossil fuel holdings risk morphing into forsaken assets. These dormant assets, encompassing coal mines and oil reserves, might evolve into economic relics, culminating in prodigious pecuniary contractions for investors and energy conglomerates. Financial establishments ensnared in these assets may grapple with instability unless they are adequately primed for this metamorphic process.

The Gambit of Climate-Related Financial Vulnerabilities

The fiscal sphere contends with an array of climate-related vulnerabilities, including corporeal vulnerabilities (e.g., real estate damage due to extreme meteorological phenomena), transitional vulnerabilities (e.g., statutory changes impacting investments), and liability vulnerabilities (e.g., legal actions tethered to climate repercussions). These vulnerabilities have the propensity to corrode the steadfastness of fiscal markets and precipitate fiscal cataclysms if not meticulously managed and disclosed.


Climate change cast its shadow as an existential menace to our planet, and its resonance with the global economy assumes increasingly conspicuous contours. From the gambit of extreme climatic incidents to the mazes of supply chain perturbations, the ascent of sea levels to the pecuniary expense of health considerations, climate change leaves an indelible mark on virtually every aspect of the worldwide economy. Nonetheless, it proffers an avenue for inventive thought, the engendering of employment prospects, and the cultivation of sustainable fiscal acceleration through a temporary stay toward a verdant economy.

Effectively addressing the fiscal repercussions of climate change demands worldwide harmonization, sagacious governmental stratagems, and proactive measures executed by corporate entities and financial establishments. Striking an equilibrium between fiscal expansion and environmental sustainability emerges as the ultimate conundrum of our era. Solely through concerted endeavor can we aspire to palliate the most ominous fiscal aftereffects of climate change and bequeath to forthcoming generations a future suffused with prosperity and sustainability.

Henley Openness Index: Unlocking the Secrets to Global Prosperity

In the ever-evolving landscape of global economics and international relations, a significant factor that often goes unnoticed is a country's level of openness. How welcoming is a nation to foreign investors, tourists, and trade partners? This is where the Henley Openness Index steps into the spotlight, shedding light on a crucial aspect of a nation's prosperity and global interactions. In this comprehensive article, we delve into the intricacies of the Henley Openness Index, its significance, and how it can be instrumental in shaping a nation's destiny on the world stage.

Unveiling the Henley Openness Index

The Henley Openness Index is a multidimensional ranking that assesses the degree of openness of countries around the world. Developed by the Henley & Partners Group, a global leader in residence and citizenship planning, this index provides a holistic view of a country's openness in four key areas:

  • Business and Investment Environment: This dimension evaluates the ease of doing business and investing in a particular country. It takes into account factors such as regulatory environment, tax policies, and the overall business climate. Countries that score high in this category are more likely to attract foreign investors and foster economic growth.
  • Tourist and Traveler Attraction: Tourism plays a pivotal role in a country's economy. The Henley Openness Index assesses the attractiveness of a nation as a tourist destination. Factors considered include visa requirements, safety, natural attractions, and cultural heritage. A high score here often translates to a thriving tourism industry.
  • Quality of Life and Settlement: For individuals and families looking to relocate or obtain a second residence, the quality of life is of paramount importance. This dimension of the index evaluates healthcare, education, safety, and overall living standards, making it a critical factor for those seeking a better life abroad.
  • Global Diplomacy and Collaboration: In an increasingly interconnected world, diplomatic ties and international collaboration are crucial. The Henley Openness Index gauges a country's diplomatic relations, its participation in international organizations, and its role in global initiatives.

Why the Henley Openness Index Matters

Understanding the significance of the Henley Openness Index is essential in today's globalized world. Here are some compelling reasons why this index matters:

  • Economic Prosperity: Countries that rank high in the Business and Investment Environment category tend to attract more foreign direct investment. This influx of capital can boost economic growth, create jobs, and enhance the overall prosperity of a nation.
  • Tourism Boost: A favorable score in the Tourist and Traveler Attraction category can lead to a surge in tourism revenue. This, in turn, can stimulate local economies, create jobs in the hospitality sector, and promote cultural exchange.
  • Quality of Life: For individuals and families considering international relocation, the Quality of Life and Settlement dimension can be a deciding factor. Access to high-quality healthcare, education, and safety is a priority for many, and the index helps identify destinations that meet these criteria.
  • Global Influence: Countries that actively engage in diplomacy and collaborate on global issues are more likely to exert influence on the world stage. The Henley Openness Index sheds light on a country's role in international affairs.

How the Henley Openness Index Can Impact Nations

The Henley Openness Index is more than just a ranking; it has the potential to shape the destinies of nations. Let's explore the various ways in which this index can impact countries:

  • Policy Reforms: Governments of countries with lower openness scores may be prompted to implement policy reforms to improve their rankings. This could involve simplifying business regulations, easing visa requirements, or enhancing diplomatic relations.
  • Economic Growth: High rankings in the Business and Investment Environment category can attract foreign investors, leading to increased economic growth. This, in turn, can elevate the standard of living for citizens.
  • Tourism Boom: Countries scoring well in the Tourist and Traveler Attraction dimension may witness a surge in tourist arrivals. This can result in economic benefits, including job creation in the tourism sector and increased revenue from tourism-related activities.
  • Global Partnerships: A strong presence in the Global Diplomacy and Collaboration category can open doors to international partnerships, enabling countries to participate in global initiatives and influence important decisions on the world stage.

Case Studies: Success Stories and Lessons Learned

Let's take a closer look at a few countries that have leveraged their Henley Openness Index rankings to achieve remarkable outcomes:

  • Singapore: A Business Hub: With its business-friendly policies and strategic location, Singapore consistently ranks high in the Business and Investment Environment category. This has attracted multinational corporations and entrepreneurs, turning the city-state into a global business hub.
  • Spain: A Tourist Paradise: Spain's high score in the Tourist and Traveler Attraction category has made it a top choice for travelers worldwide. The country's rich cultural heritage, stunning landscapes, and welcoming visa policies have contributed to its status as a tourist paradise.
  • Canada: Quality of Life: Canada's exceptional performance in the Quality of Life and Settlement dimension has made it a preferred destination for families seeking a better life. Its excellent healthcare system, high-quality education, and safety have earned it a stellar reputation.
  • Norway: A Global Peacemaker: Norway's active participation in international diplomacy and collaboration has positioned it as a global peacemaker. Its efforts in conflict resolution and humanitarian aid have earned it respect and influence in global affairs.


The Henley Openness Index serves as a powerful tool for nations seeking to enhance their global standing and prosperity. Whether it's attracting foreign investments, boosting tourism, improving quality of life, or fostering international collaboration, this index provides valuable insights and opportunities for countries to shape their destinies on the world stage.

Understanding the nuances of the Henley Openness Index and how it impacts nations is the first step toward harnessing its potential for positive change. As the world continues to evolve, the significance of openness and global engagement cannot be overstated. Embracing these principles can lead to a brighter future for countries and their citizens, unlocking the secrets to global prosperity.

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

The Evolution of BRICS Summits: A Decade of Global Impact

Exploring the BRICS Summit Series and Its Significance

Over the past decade, the BRICS summits have played a pivotal role in shaping global diplomacy and cooperation. These meetings, attended by the leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, have addressed a wide range of crucial issues, from international financial stability to climate change and development aid. In this article, we will delve into the evolution of the BRICS summits, highlighting their key themes and outcomes.

The 1st BRIC Summit: Yekaterinburg, Russia, June 2009

The journey of BRICS summits began in Yekaterinburg, Russia, in June 2009, when the inaugural BRIC Summit took place. Leaders from the member nations gathered to discuss pressing international matters, including global financial issues, G20 affairs, and cooperation within the BRIC framework. This historic meeting resulted in a Joint Statement that emphasized the need for enhanced representation of emerging markets and developing countries in international financial institutions. Additionally, a BRIC Joint Statement on Global Food Security was endorsed, underlining the group's commitment to addressing global challenges.

The 2nd BRIC Summit: Brasilia, Brazil, April 2010

Building on the success of the first summit, the second BRIC Summit convened in Brasilia, Brazil, in April 2010. The leaders continued their discussions on international issues, including the international financial crisis and regional hotspots. They also advanced their cooperation within the BRIC framework, marking the initial establishment of the BRICS cooperation mechanism. This pivotal meeting witnessed the launch of the BRIC entrepreneur forum, the BRIC inter-bank cooperation mechanism, the BRIC cooperative forum, and a think tank conference.

The 3rd BRICS Summit: Sanya, China, April 2011

In April 2011, the BRICS Summit entered a new phase as South Africa joined the group, transforming it into BRICS. The summit, themed "Broad Vision, Shared Prosperity," centered on discussions about the international economy, finance, and development issues. The leaders adopted the Sanya Declaration, a significant milestone in the group's history. The summit also featured supporting events such as the BRICS think-tank conference, the BRICS Inter-Bank Cooperation Mechanism Annual Meeting and Finance Forum, the BRICS Business Forum, and the BRICS Economy and Trade Ministers’ Conference.

The 4th BRICS Summit: New Delhi, India, March 2012

New Delhi, India, hosted the fourth BRICS Summit in March 2012 under the theme "BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Security, and Prosperity." Leaders adopted the Delhi Declaration, underscoring the critical role played by BRICS countries in the world economy, particularly in the aftermath of the global financial crisis.

The 5th BRICS Summit: Durban, South Africa, March 2013

The fifth BRICS Summit, held in Durban, South Africa, in March 2013, carried the theme "BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Development, Integration, and Industrialization." This gathering marked a turning point, with the establishment of the BRICS New Development Bank and Contingency Reserve Arrangement. Additionally, the BRICS Business Council and BRICS Think Tank Council were founded. The summit also hosted the first BRICS Outreach Dialogue with African leaders.

The 6th BRICS Summit: Fortaleza, Brazil, July 2014

Under the theme "Inclusive Growth: Sustainable Solutions," the sixth BRICS Summit convened in Fortaleza, Brazil, in July 2014. Leaders adopted the Fortaleza Declaration, which witnessed the Agreement on the Establishment of the New Development Bank and the Treaty for the Establishment of a BRICS Contingency Reserve Arrangement. BRICS Leaders engaged in a dialogue with leaders of South American countries, further expanding their outreach.

The 7th BRICS Summit: Ufa, Russia, July 2015

The seventh BRICS Summit was hosted in Ufa, Russia, in July 2015, under the theme "BRICS Partnership - a Powerful Factor of Global Development." Leaders adopted the Ufa Declaration and Action Plan, and the summit saw the signing of various agreements, including the BRICS Inter-Governmental Agreement on Cooperation in the Field of Culture. BRICS Leaders engaged in dialogues with the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), Shanghai Cooperation Organization members, and other guest countries.

The 8th BRICS Summit: Goa, India, October 2016

In October 2016, the BRICS leaders gathered in Goa, India, under the theme "Building Responsive, Inclusive, and Collective Solutions." The leaders adopted the Goa Declaration and Plan of Action, and key agreements were signed, such as the Memorandum of Understanding on the Establishment of the BRICS Agricultural Research Platform. The summit also featured dialogues with the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC).

The 9th BRICS Summit: Xiamen, China, September 2017

The ninth BRICS Summit took place in Xiamen, China, in September 2017, focusing on "BRICS: Stronger Partnership for a Brighter Future." Leaders adopted the Xiamen Declaration and Action Plan, and this summit marked the first BRICS Dialogue with Leaders of Emerging Markets and Developing Countries.

The 10th BRICS Summit: Johannesburg, South Africa, July 2018

Johannesburg, South Africa, hosted the tenth BRICS Summit in July 2018, with the theme "BRICS in Africa: Collaboration for Inclusive Growth and Shared Prosperity in the Fourth Industrial Revolution." Leaders adopted the Johannesburg Declaration and Plan of Action, reinforcing their commitment to inclusive growth. This summit also featured an informal Leaders Retreat and dialogues with leaders of the Southern African Development Community and other global South organizations.

The 11th BRICS Summit: Brasilia, Brazil, November 2019

In November 2019, the eleventh BRICS Summit was held in Brasilia, Brazil, under the theme "BRICS: Economic Growth for an Innovative Future." Leaders adopted the Brasilia Declaration, underscoring their dedication to economic growth and innovation. The summit also featured engagements with the BRICS Business Forum, BRICS Business Council, and the New Development Bank.

The 12th BRICS Summit: Virtual Meeting, November 2020

The global landscape changed significantly in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In response, the twelfth BRICS Summit was held virtually in November 2020, themed "BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Shared Security, and Innovative Growth." Leaders addressed the pandemic's impact and adopted the Moscow Declaration. Reports from the President of the New Development Bank and other BRICS cooperation mechanisms were also received.

The 13th BRICS Summit: Virtual Meeting, September 2021

Continuing the virtual format, the thirteenth BRICS Summit took place in September 2021 under the theme "BRICS@15: Intra BRICS cooperation for continuity, consolidation, and consensus." Leaders adopted the New Delhi Declaration, reflecting on BRICS' achievements and welcoming the Joint Statement on Strengthening and Reforming the Multilateral System adopted in 2021.

The 14th BRICS Summit: Virtual Meeting, June 2022

The fourteenth BRICS Summit occurred virtually in June 2022, with the theme "Foster High-quality BRICS Partnership, Usher in a New Era for Global Development." Leaders adopted the Beijing Declaration and welcomed initiatives such as cooperation on supply chains and a strategy on food security. The summit also addressed the situation in Ukraine, advocating for dialogue and mediation. Additionally, a virtual High-Level Dialogue on Global Development took place, reinforcing the commitment to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In conclusion, the BRICS summits have evolved over the years, playing a crucial role in global diplomacy and cooperation. These gatherings have addressed a wide array of global challenges and have resulted in significant agreements and declarations that continue to shape the international landscape. As the BRICS partnership moves forward, it remains a powerful force for global development and collaboration.

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Unique Land Parcel Identification Number(ULPIN) System

Unique Land Parcel Identification Number (ULPIN) is part of the Digital India Land Records Modernization Programme (DILRMP). The identification is based on the longitude and latitude coordinates of the land parcel and depends on detailed surveys and geo-referenced cadastral maps. The ULPIN is generated using the Electronic Commerce Code Management Association (ECCM A) standards during the importing of the geo-referenced shape file into BhuNaksha, a cadastral mapping solution of NIC. It is a 14-digit identification number accorded to a land parcel. ULPIN is a Single, Authoritative Source of Truth for information on any parcel of land or property to provide Integrated Land Services to the citizens as well as all stakeholders.

The basic objectives are to identify departments dealing with land & rendering multi-dimensional land-related services to the citizens such as the Revenue Department, Panchayat, Forest, Registration Department, Survey & Settlement Department. ULPIN supports comprehensive information on land and properties and maintains consistency of core data across all departments & agencies of the government nationwide.

Digital India Land Record Modernization Programme

The Land Reforms(LR) Division was implementing two Centrally Sponsored Schemes viz.: Computerisation of Land Records (CLR) & Strengthening of Revenue Administration and Updating of Land Records (SRA & ULR). Later on 21.8.2008, the Union Cabinet approved the merger of these schemes into a modified Scheme named Digital India Land Records Modernization Programme (DILRMP). The main aims of DILRMP are to usher in a system of updated land records, automated and automatic mutation, integration between textual and spatial records, interconnectivity between revenue and registration, to replace the present deeds registration and presumptive title system with that of conclusive titling with title guarantee.

The DILRMP has 3 major components - (a) Computerization of land records (b) Survey/re-survey (c) Computerization of Registration. The District has been taken as the unit of implementation, where all programme activities are to converge. It is hoped that all districts in the country will be covered by the end of the 12th Plan period except where cadastral surveys are being done for the first time.

Saturday, September 2, 2023

The Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)

The NPT was signed in 1968, but it came into force in 1970 after the required number of countries signed and ratified it. It has been signed by 187 countries so far. It has eleven articles. It divides the countries into two categories - nuclear weapon states (NWS), having nuclear weapons (US, UK, China, France, and Russia) and non-nuclear weapon states (NNWS). According to the provisions of the treaty, the NNWS shall not acquire and develop nuclear weapons. The NWS shall not transfer the nuclear technology to the NNWS. However, the NNWS may get the nuclear material and technology for peaceful purposes under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

There is no ban on the vertical proliferation of nuclear weapons by the NWS. Vertical proliferation means the upgradation of nuclear weapons by the NWS. On the other hand, horizontal proliferation means the development of such weapons by the NNWS. Thus, the NPT allows vertical proliferation but bans horizontal proliferation of nuclear weapons and it is considered discriminatory by many countries including India.

Article 6 of the treaty commits the NWS they start and complete negotiations in good faith on nuclear disarmament in exchange for the promise by the NNWS not to acquire weapons. The negotiations so far have not succeeded in achieving the goal of universal disarmament. India, Pakistan, and Israel have not signed the treaty and in 2003 North Korea withdrew from the treaty. Thus, non-proliferation, disarma¬ment, and peaceful use of nuclear energy are considered the three pillars of NPT. The US, Russia, UK, China, and France all may continue to develop their nuclear weapons and thereby undermine the treaty by not living up to their obligations under Article 6. The NPT is valid for a period of 25 years and after that, it shall be reviewed every 5 years. It was reviewed in 1995, 2000, and 2010 and was extended indefinitely in 1995.

The third review conference was held in New York on 3-28 May 2010. The 2010 review conference expressed the re-commitment of nations to the basic principle of NPT. The conference called upon all Middle Eastern states to participate in the proposed weapons of mass destruction-free zone in the Middle East. The Conference decided to put in place specific action plans for the non-proliferation, disarmament, and peaceful use of nuclear energy. There are fears that the NPT regime will fall apart due to combined vertical proliferation in nuclear weapon states and the proliferation of weapons to new states, most recently North Korea.

India, Pakistan, and Israel have not signed the NPT so far. However, North Korea withdrew from the treaty in 2003. India declined to sign this treaty as she considered it as discriminatory.

Thursday, August 31, 2023

Saudi Arabia to Send First Woman Astronaut into International Space Station

A Saudi Arabian woman Rayyanah Barnawi will become the first woman astronaut from the country to go on a space mission. In the second quarter of 2023, Barnawi and Saudi male astronaut, Ali Alqarni, will join the crew of the AX-2 space mission. Together, they'll be the second and third Saudi Arabians to fly to space. Peggy Whitson, a former NASA astronaut, will also be on board for her fourth flight to the ISS. Meanwhile, John Shoffner, a Tennessee businessman, will be the pilot.

Rayyana Barnawi will join fellow Saudi astronaut Ali Al-Qarni on a 10-day mission to the International Space Station (ISS). Barnawi and Al-Qarni will fly to the ISS aboard a SpaceX Dragon spacecraft as part of a mission this spring by the private space company Axiom Space Agency and Axiom. Rayyanah Barnawi is a 33-year-old research laboratory specialist who will be responsible for conducting mission experiments aboard the ISS. Barnawi has nine years of experience in cancer stem research and holds a Bachelor's degree in Biomedical Sciences (ReGD) from New Zealand's Otago University as well as a Master's in Biomedical Sciences from Riyadh's Alfaisal University.

UNESCO Declares Visva-Bharati as the World's First Living Heritage University

Visva-Bharati University, founded by Rabindranath Tagore in 1921, may soon get 'heritage' status from UNESCO. Located in Shantiniketan, West Bengal, the century-old institution could become the world's first living heritage university. University's vice-chancellor Bidyut Chakraborty said all formalities have been completed, and only the formal meeting remains to be held which will take place either in April or May 2023. Normally, a heritage tag is given to a dead monument. For the first time in the world, a living university that is functioning is going to get the heritage tag from UNESCO.

The university spread across 1,130 acres, was named after Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, who was also its founder. When the Visva-Bharati Society was registered as an organisation in 1922, the university began to be known by the same name. Tagore had donated some of his property, including land and a bungalow, to the society.

  • Before Independence (in 1947), Visva-Bharati was a college. It was given the status of a Central University in 1951, and Tagore's son Rathindranath was appointed as the first Vice-Chancellor (VC). The second VC was Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen's grandfather, Kshitimohan Sen.
  • According to reports, the Union culture ministry had appealed for a UNESCO heritage site status for Santiniketan 11 years ago, to secure recognition for Tagore's cultural ark in the time leading up to his 150th birth anniversary.
  • The Nobel Laureate had settled in Shantiniketan in 1901, because of the ill health of his wife, Mrinalini Devi. It was after this that he founded this institution. Tagore believed in open-air education, a system he introduced to the university and it is still in place.

Sunday, August 27, 2023

National Programme for Dairy Development

Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying (DAHD) has been implementing the “National Programme for Dairy Development (NPDD)” scheme across the country since February 2014. The scheme has been restructured/ realigned in July 2021 for implementation from 2021-22 to 2025-26 with the following two components:

  • Component 'A' of NPDD focuses on creating/strengthening infrastructure for quality milk testing equipment as well as primary chilling facilities for State Cooperative Dairy Federations/ District Cooperative Milk Producers' Union/SHGs/Milk Producer Companies/Farmer Producer Organizations.
  • Component 'B' of the NPDD scheme "Dairying through Cooperatives” aims to increase the sale of milk and dairy products by increasing farmer's access to organized markets, upgrading dairy processing facilities and marketing infrastructure, and enhancing the capacity of producer-owned institutions.

As per the 20th Livestock Census (2019), there are 80.83 million farmers household engaged in dairy farming activities (having either cattle or buffalo) and dairy farming contributes for a portion of their daily income.

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Climate change impact assessment

Climate change is a cross-cutting issue spanning various Ministries/ Departments and institutions under them. Studies on adverse impacts of climate change is mainly sponsored by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES), Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC), Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). Sectoral aspects of climate change are also studied by different Ministries/Departments concerning sectors like agriculture, water resources, human health, power, renewable energy, transport, urban, etc. Further, a large number of universities and government research institutions such as the Indian Institute of Technologies (IITs), Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Central and State Universities and their departments also carry out climate change related research.

The Government of India through its various organizations such as Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR), Geological Survey of India, Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), G. B. Pant National Institute of Himalayan Environment, Central Water Commission, and National Institute of Hydrology has been carrying out regular scientific studies to monitor the changes in Himalayan glaciers. One such study conducted by MoEFCC and ISRO, monitored 2,018 glaciers between years 2000 to 2011, which showed that 87% of the glaciers showed no change, 12% retreated and 1% glaciers have advanced.

Climate change and its impact on glaciers remains a global challenge which requires global efforts and actions. Government of India is committed to protect the glaciers and has made efforts to reduce the impact through several adaptation and mitigation measures. This includes a number of programmes under National Action Plan on Climate Change. Various R&D projects are being supported for studying Himalayan Glaciers under the National Mission for Sustaining Himalayan Ecosystem and National Mission on Strategic Knowledge for Climate Change. Several areas in the Himalayan States have also been declared as National Parks or Protected Areas, such as, Gangotri National Park, Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve, and Great Himalayan National Park.

There is no established study for India providing a quantified attribution of climate change leading to increased outbreak of floods. While many studies monitor disasters such as floods, drought and heat, the science of attribution of these changes particularly to climate change is far more complex and currently an evolving subject. Most studies so far have relied on mathematical modelling of climate change impacts but these are not empirically verified.

The occurrence of floods can be attributed to various factors, including wide variations in rainfall both in time and space with frequent departures from the normal pattern, inadequate carrying capacities of rivers, river bank erosion and silting of river beds, landslides, poor natural drainage in flood prone areas, snowmelt and glacial lake out-bursts.

President of India to Confer National Geoscience Awards - 2022

The President of India, Smt. Droupadi Murmu conferred the prestigious National Geoscience Awards - 2022 at the Rashtrapati Bhavan Cultural Centre, New Delhi on 24th July 2023 in the presence of the Minister of Coal, Mines & Parliamentary Affairs Shri Pralhad Joshi and the Minister of State for Mines, Coal & Railways Shri Raosaheb Patil Danve. The Ministry of Mines confers National Geoscience Awards every year in three categories:

  • National Geoscience Award for Life Time Achievement,
  • National Young Geoscientist Award
  • National Geoscience Award in various fields of geosciences.

Instituted in 1966, the National Geoscience Awards (NGA) is a symbol of recognition and appreciation for exceptional individuals and organizations that have demonstrated excellence, dedication and innovation in the realm of Geosciences. The awards are presented in the field of Mineral Discovery and Exploration, Basic Geosciences, Applied Geosciences and Mining, Mineral Beneficiation and Sustainable Mineral Development.

This year for NGA 2022, 168 nominations were received under different award categories and examined through a three-stage screening process. Nominees for 10 National Geoscience Awards under different categories, which include one National Geoscience Award for Lifetime Achievement, eight National Geoscience Awards under different fields and one National Young Geoscientist Awards have been selected. These 10 NGA awards will be presented to 22 Geoscientists by the President of India.

The National Geoscience Award for Lifetime Achievement will be conferred upon Dr. Om Narain Bhargava, well known for his pioneering work in the Himalayas spanning over the last four decades. The National Young Geoscientist Award will be presented to Dr. Amiya Kumar Samal, Assistant Professor of Banaras Hindu University who has made a significant contribution in understanding the variation of Sub-Continental Lithospheric Mantle (SCLM) below different Archean cratons of the Indian shield.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

e-Waste Management in India

Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) estimates the e-waste generation at the national level based on the countrywide sales data provided by producers, and the average life of notified electrical and electronic equipment (EEE), as mandated under the E-waste Management Rules, 2016. As per the information available with CPCB, e-waste generated in the country from twenty-one (21) types of EEE notified under the E-Waste (Management) Rules, 2016 in the financial year (FY) 2020-21 and 2021-22 was estimated as 13,46,496.31 Tonnes and 16,01,155.36 tonnes respectively, which is not substantial as compared to other major economies of the world.

Ministry has comprehensively revised the previous set of Rules and notified the E-Waste (Management) Rules, 2022 in November 2022 and the same is enforce since 1st April, 2023. These new rules intend to manage e-waste in an environmentally sound manner and put in place an improved Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) regime for e-waste recycling wherein all the manufacturers, producers, refurbishers, and recyclers are required to register on the portal developed by CPCB. The new provisions would facilitate and channelize the informal sector to the formal sector for doing business and ensure the recycling of E-waste in an environmentally sound manner. Provisions for environmental compensation and verification & audit have also been introduced. These rules also promote Circular Economy through the EPR regime and scientific recycling/disposal of e-waste.

An Action Plan for enforcement of E-Waste (Management) Rules, across the country is in place and is being implemented by all the States/UTs and State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs)/Pollution Control Committees (PCCs). An e-waste Management review portal has also been developed for uploading the status and progress of the e-waste action plan. The quantity of e-waste collected and processed during FY 2021-22 is 5,27,131.57 Tonnes.

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Fashion Design: Unveiling the Pathway to a Creative Career

Are you passionate about style, colors, and fabrics? Do you have a flair for creativity and a keen eye for detail? If so, then a career in fashion design might be the perfect pathway for you to explore. Fashion design is an exciting and dynamic field that allows individuals to express their artistic vision through clothing and accessories. In this article, we'll delve into the captivating world of fashion design and how it can lead you to a fulfilling and creative career.

The Art of Fashion Design

Fashion design is much more than just sketching pretty dresses or trendy outfits. It's a form of art that combines aesthetics, functionality, and self-expression. Fashion designers use their artistic talents to create unique and innovative clothing that resonates with people's emotions and desires. Each garment tells a story, reflecting the designer's personality and prevailing cultural trends.

The Journey of a Fashion Designer

Embarking on a career in fashion design requires dedication, perseverance, and a strong educational foundation. Many successful designers start by earning a degree in fashion design or a related field. During their education, aspiring designers learn about textile science, pattern making, sewing techniques, and the history of fashion. This knowledge lays the groundwork for creating garments that are not only visually appealing but also well-constructed and comfortable.

Developing Your Unique Style

One of the keys to becoming a successful fashion designer is developing a distinct and recognizable style. Your style represents your design philosophy and sets you apart from others in the industry. It's essential to experiment with different techniques and materials to discover what truly resonates with your creative instincts. As you progress, you'll fine-tune your approach and gain confidence in your artistic vision.

Embracing Sustainability and Ethical Practices

In recent years, the fashion industry has been making strides towards sustainability and ethical practices. As a modern fashion designer, being mindful of the environmental and social impacts of your work is crucial. Consider using eco-friendly materials, reducing waste, and promoting fair labor practices. By incorporating sustainability into your designs, you not only contribute to a better planet but also appeal to the growing number of eco-conscious consumers.

Building Your Portfolio

As you develop your skills and style, it's essential to build a strong portfolio showcasing your best work. A well-curated portfolio is your ticket to gaining recognition in the industry and landing coveted opportunities. Collaborate with other designers, photographers, and models to create captivating photoshoots that highlight your designs in different settings. Your portfolio should demonstrate your versatility, creativity, and ability to create a cohesive collection.

The Business of Fashion

Beyond the artistic aspect, understanding the business side of fashion is vital for your success. Running a fashion label or working for a renowned brand involves marketing, budgeting, and forecasting trends. Familiarize yourself with fashion marketing strategies, trend analysis, and customer behavior. These skills will empower you to make informed decisions and ensure your designs reach the right audience.

The Ever-Evolving Industry

The fashion industry is a dynamic and ever-changing landscape. Trends come and go, consumer preferences shift, and technology continues to impact the way we design and produce clothing. As a fashion designer, embracing change and staying open to innovation is essential. Attend fashion events, network with industry professionals, and stay up-to-date with the latest developments to remain relevant and ahead of the curve.


Fashion design offers a mesmerizing journey into the world of creativity and self-expression. It's a pathway that allows you to blend artistry with functionality, shaping garments that touch people's lives and emotions. Whether you dream of launching your own fashion line or contributing to renowned brands, the world of fashion design has endless possibilities. Embrace your passion, hone your skills, and let your imagination guide you on this captivating career path.