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Avian botulism


Avian botulism reason for bird deaths  

       WHY IN NEWS?  

18,000 carcasses of birds have been removed from Sambhar Lake in Rajasthan

GS 3:Biodiversity Conservation:Important Bird Areas (IBAs) of India


For PRELIMS you have to understand the reason for the birds death , details and features of the bird

For MAINS look foe wider causes solutions for such epidemics and also how does it impact the environment.


A dead bird at the Sambhar Lake in Rajasthan.

Who found it ?

  • The Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI), Bareilly, on Thursday confirmed avian botulism.
What is Avian botulism ?
  • It is a neuro-muscular illness caused by a toxin which is produced by a bacterial strain — as the reason for mass mortality of birds, including migratory species from Northern Asia, at Sambhar Lake in Rajasthan.
It is caused by ?
  • The illness, caused by a bacterium called Clostridium botulinum, affected the nervous system of birds, leading to flaccid paralysis in their legs and wings and neck touching the ground.
  • Laboratory tests conducted on the samples of carcasses collected from the lake confirmed the disease infecting the birds, the probability of which was earlier stated by veterinarians in the State.
  • The scientists at IVRI found the samples infested with maggots of third stage with a clear indication that the avian mortality had occurred over a period of time.
How does it affect the bird ?
  • Botulism is one of the most potent toxins known to science (very little is needed to kill). Botulism binds to nerve endings and interferes with muscle movements.
  • Typical clinical signs in birds with botulism include weakness, lethargy, inability to hold up the head or to fly. For waterfowl, this can be catastrophic because inability to hold up the head leads to drowning.

Importance of LAKE SAMBAR:

  • Located 80 km south-west of Jaipur, Sambhar Lake is India’s largest inland saline water body and has been designated as a wetland of international importance, attracting thousands of migratory birds during winter.

       IASbhai Windup:  

Avian flu ruled out A Bhopal-based laboratory had earlier ruled out avian flu as the cause of deaths of birds after examining the viscera. The post-mortem of two bird carcasses by a Bikaner-based research organisation had concluded that bacterium Clostridium botulinum had entered from the soil into the meat of some dead birds.

Suggested reading : https://www.usgs.gov/centers/nwhc/science/avian-botulism?qt-science_center_objects=0#qt-science_center_objects  



PSBs’ outreach


Loans worth ₹2.52 lakh crore disbursed in October: Centre

       WHY IN NEWS?  

In PSBs’ outreach, corporates get almost half of the total; MSMEs get ₹37,210 cr.

GS 3:Resource mobilization


For PRELIMS you have just keep an eye on loan in which sector are booming.

For MAINS analyse this issue with respect to NPA.


Public sector banks (PSBs) and non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) disbursed a total of ₹2.52 lakh crore worth of loans in two tranches during their outreach programmes in October 2019
  • Almost half of this amount (over ₹1.22 lakh crore) were loans to corporates. Home loans accounted for ₹12,166 crore, while vehicle loans stood at ₹7,085 crore. Agricultural loans accounted for ₹40,504.
  • Within the loan disbursals, loans given to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) accounted for ₹37,210 crore.
FM’s directive
  • “As per the Union Finance Minister’s directive to public sector banks (PSBs) in September 2019, customer outreach programmes were conducted by PSBs in participation with other banks and NBFCs in 226 districts (from October 1, 2019 to October 9, 2019) in Phase I and 148 districts (from October 21, 2019 to October 25, 2019) in Phase II.
  • Apart from the sanctioning loans, the banks also made efforts towards the opening of accounts, Aadhaar and mobile seeding of accounts, and popularising the BHIM app.
  • According to the government, of the ₹2,52,589 crore worth of loans disbursed, ₹1,05,599 crore were disbursed towards new term loans and ₹46,800 crore were disbursed towards new working capital loans.
  • The new term loans and the new working capital loans accounted for 60% of the total disbursement.
Credit to NBFCs The government further said that public sector banks gave credit worth ₹19,627.26 crore to NBFCs during October 2019. The credit to the NBFCs includes ₹1,453.13 crore for the buyout of their pooled assets by the banks.


Growth rate


Growth Rate of Industrial, Core and Manufacturing Sectors

       WHY IN NEWS?  

Global growth is forecast at 3.0% for 2019, its lowest level since 2008-09 as per the World Economic Outlook of the IMF, October 2019.  However, despite this global downturn, India continues to grow faster than rest of the world.

GS 3:Financial inclusion as an instrument of inclusive growth.


For PRELIMS you have to look into conscience of these units.

For MAINS you should be able to explain how to boost the momentum with viable policy making.


Who issues it ?

Ministry of Commerce & Industry

A statement of the growth of IIP, Index of Eight Core industries & Manufacturing sector during the last five years is placed below:


Growth of Index of Industrial Production(IIP), Index of Eight Core Industries (ICI) & Manufacturing Sector
Growth/Years 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
Overall Growth of IIP 4.0 3.3 4.6 4.4 3.8
Overall Growth of Core Industries 4.9 3.0 4.8 4.3 4.4
Manufacturing Sector 3.8 2.8 4.4 4.6 3.9

Source: 1) Source: National Statistical Office (NSO), 2) Office of Economic Adviser, DPIIT

Following are the sector specific measures taken by the Government to boost the core sector:



  • The Government has taken corrective steps to increase the domestic demand in steel sector which among others include trade measures like anti-dumping duties, safeguard duties and notified Quality Control Order thereby making BIS standards mandatory for all steel products and imports.
  • The Government has notified the policy on Domestically Manufactured Iron & Steel Products in government procurements which facilitates domestic value addition and National Steel Policy 2017 with a view to encourage long term growth of domestic steel sector.



  • The Government has come up with new methodology for auction of coal mines for sale of coal.
  • The salient features of the methodology for auction of coal are no restriction on the sale and/or utilization of coal from the coal mine; coal can be exported and more flexibility in coal production schedule. FDI to the extent of 100% under automatic route is to be allowed in coal mining activities.



  • Government has introduced various operational reforms to improve the power supply, system performance and financial health of the sector such as Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY in 2014), Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS in 2014), Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY in 2015) and Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana (Saubhagya in 2017).
  • For the promotion of renewable energy, Government has fixed a cumulative target of addition of 175 GW renewable energy based electric installed capacity by 2022 with an objective to promote cleaner and sustainable energy.


Petroleum and Natural Gas: 

  • Government has taken several steps to enhance exploration & production of oil and gas in the country which include, Policy for Relaxations, Extensions and Clarifications under Production Sharing Contract (PSC) regime for early monetization of hydrocarbon discoveries, Discovered Small Field Policy, Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy, Policy for Extension of Production Sharing Contracts, Policy for early monetization of Coal Bed Methane, Setting up of National Data Repository, Appraisal of Unapprised areas in Sedimentary Basins, Re-assessment of Hydrocarbon Resources, Policy framework to streamline the working of Production Sharing Contracts in Pre-NELP and NELP Blocks, Policy to Promote and Incentivize Enhanced Recovery Methods for Oil and Gas, Policy framework for exploration and exploitation of Unconventional Hydrocarbons under existing Production Sharing Contracts, Coal Bed Methane contracts and Nomination fields.

       IASbhai Windup:  

  • The growth of industrial sector is an interplay of several factors, like domestic demand, demand for exports, level of investment and prevailing prices.
  • The Government has been continuously taking steps to boost industrial growth including infrastructure sector which includes putting in place a policy framework to create conducive business environment, strengthening infrastructure network and ensuring availability of required inputs.
  • Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) policy and procedures have been simplified and liberalised progressively.
  • The Government has also taken up a series of measures to improve Ease of Doing Business.

       SOURCES:   PIB  


Air Pollution


Various Initiatives undertaken by Government for mitigation of Air Pollution

       WHY IN NEWS?  

Central Government has taken a number of regulatory measures for prevention, control and abatement of air pollution in the country.

GS 3:Combating Pollution


For PRELIMS you have to go through the schema of these snippets.

For MAINS maybe one or two examples can be quoted from this article.


Who is doing it ?

Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change

Government is taking all efforts for the mitigation of air pollution in the country. Action Plans for Improvement of Air Quality

  1. The Central Government has launched National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) under the Central Sector “Control of Pollution” Scheme as a long-term, time-bound, national level strategy to tackle the air pollution problem across the country in a comprehensive manner with targets to achieve 20 % to 30 % reduction in PM10 and PM2.5 concentrations by 2024 keeping 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration.102 non-attainment cities mostly in Indo-Gangetic Plains have been identified based on ambient air quality data for the period 2011 – 2015 and WHO report 2014/2018. The city specific Action Plans have been approved for all 102 non-attainment cities for implementation on ground.
  2. The Central Government has notified a Comprehensive Action Plan (CAP) in 2018 identifying timelines and implementing agencies for actions identified for prevention, control and mitigation of air pollution in Delhi and NCR.
  3. Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) was notified on January 12, 2017, for prevention,    control and abatement of air pollution in Delhi and NCR. It identifies graded measures and implementing agencies for response to four AQI categories, namely, Moderate to Poor, Very Poor, Severe and Severe + or Emergency.

  (b)    Several steps have been taken for creating awareness amongst the general population. These steps are as follows.

  • SAMEER app has been launched wherein air quality information is available to public along with provision for registering complaints against air polluting activities.
  • Air quality information collection and dissemination are done from a centralized location. It provides real time air quality status to all stakeholders.
  • A dedicated media corner, Twitter and Facebook accounts have been created for access to air quality related information and to provide a platform for lodging complaints by general population.
  • Crowd sourcing of innovative ideas/ suggestions/proposals from public is done through CPCB website to strengthen efforts for improving air quality in Delhi-NCR.
  • The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change is implementing Environment Education, Awareness and Training Scheme with the objective to promote environmental awareness among all sections of the society and to mobilize people’s participation for conservation of environment. Under the National Green Corps (NGC) programme of the Ministry, about one lakh schools have been identified as Eco-clubs, wherein, nearly thirty lakh students are actively participating in various environment protection and conservation activities, including the issues related to the air pollution.
  • Ministry is promoting peoples participation and awareness building among citizens for environmental conservation that focus on promotion of cycling, saving water and electricity, growing trees, proper maintenance of vehicles, following of lane discipline and reducing congestion on roads by car pooling etc.
  • For field feedback on air polluting activities in Delhi and major NCR towns, 46 teams of  Central Pollution Control Board have been deployed since October 7, 2019.
  • The initiatives taken by the Government for the abatement and control of air pollution in Delhi and NCR since 2016 have bore good results.     As per Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Stations (CAAQMS) data, the number of ‘Good’, ‘Satisfactory’, and ‘Moderate’ days has progressively increased to 159 in 2018, as compared to 152 in 2017 and 106 in 2016, and the number of ‘Poor’, ‘Very Poor’ and ‘Severe’ days has reduced to 206, compared to 213 in 2017 and 246 in 2016. In Delhi, reduction in PM2.5 levels in 2018 is 7.3% over 2017 and 14.8% over 2016. In Delhi, reduction in PM10 levels in 2018 is 8.6% over 2017 and 16.5% over 2016.


       IASbhai Windup: 

There is overall improvement in air quality of Delhi in 2019 (From Jan 2019 – 18th November, 2019) successively since 2016. Number of ‘Good’ to ‘Moderate’ days increased to 175 in 2019, as compared to 158 in 2018, and number of ‘Poor’ to ‘Severe’ days reduced to 147, compared to 164 in 2018.

       SOURCES:   PIB  


South Asian Diaspora Convention (SADC)


‘Diaspora can help South Asia meet its economic challenges’Singapore’s security minister seeks efforts to boost regional integration at diaspora summit

       WHY IN NEWS?  

South Asia Diaspora Convention (SADC) on 16 November

GS 1:3:SDG:Conventions


For PRELIMS you have to give full concentration on aim , theme and purpose of such meetings

For MAINS the pick some interesting lines if they meet your requirement.


Theme: ‘Vibrant South Asia – Innovative Diaspora’,
  • The 4th South Asian Diaspora Convention (SADC) will bring together more than 800 distinguished guests and more than 30 of the region’s leading policymakers and business leaders, academics and civil society leaders as speakers.


  • The speakers will discuss and debate critical topics on entrepreneurship, skills development and innovation that will affect South Asia’s future and its role in remaining competitive in the 21st century.
  • According to the World Bank, South Asia has reclaimed its lead as the fastest growing region globally, driven by the recovery in India. Growth is expected to accelerate to 6.9 percent in 2018 and further strengthen to an average of 7.1 percent in 2019-2020 .
  • What are the geo-economic and geo-political challenges affecting South Asia? What are the key engines of growth in South Asia and how will new technologies, innovation, skills development and entrepreneurship create an inclusive economy that help drive the region’s growth agenda forward?

       IASbhai Windup:  

The South Asian diaspora attending SADC 2019 will benefit from the unique high impact networking and business opportunities to foster greater investments in the region. SADC 2019 will feature the sub-themes of ‘Infrastructure and Smart Cities’, ‘Women Empowerment in South Asia’, ‘Technology in Financial Services’, ‘Business in South Asia: Opportunities and Challenges’ and more.



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