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1. India’s heaviest communication satellite GSAT-11 has been launched

  • ISRO’s heaviest and most-advanced high throughput communication satellite GSAT-11 was successfully launched from the Spaceport in French Guiana on December 5, 2018.
  • The launch vehicle Ariane 5 VA-246 lifted off from Kourou Launch Base, French Guiana carrying India’s GSAT-11 and South Korea’s GEO-KOMPSAT-2A satellites, as scheduled.
  • Ariane 5 is one of three launch vehicles operated by Arianespace along with Soyuz and Vega.
  • The 5,854-kg GSAT-11 will provide high data rate connectivity to users of Indian mainland and islands through 32 user beams in Ku-band and 8 hub beams in Ka-band.
  • GSAT-11 will boost the broadband connectivity to rural and inaccessible Gram Panchayats in the country coming under the Bharat Net Project, which is part of Digital India Programme.
  • GSAT-11 will be positioned at 74-degree east longitude in the geostationary orbit.
  • Subsequently, the two solar arrays and four antenna reflectors of GSAT-11 will be deployed in orbit.

Related Information

Different Bands in satellite communication

(a) L-band (Frequency range- 1–2 GHz)

  • It is used for low earth orbit satellites, military satellites, and terrestrial wireless connections like GSM mobile phones, GPS.

(b) S-band (2–4 GHz)

  • Weather radar, surface ship radar, and some communications satellites

 (c) C-band (4–8 GHz)

  • Primarily used for satellite communications, for full-time satellite TV networks or raw satellite feeds.

(d) X-band (8 – 12 GHz)

  • Primarily used by the military.
  • Used in radar applications including continuous-wave, pulsed, single-polarisation, dual- polarisation, synthetic aperture radar and phased arrays.

(e) Ku band (12–18 GHz)

  • Used for satellite communications.
  • Used for direct broadcast satellite services.

 (f) Ka-band (26-40 GHz)

  • High-resolution, close-range targeting radars on military aircraft.

GSAT

  • The GSAT series of geosynchronous satellites is a system developed by ISRO with an objective to make India self-reliant in broadcasting services.

Geosynchronous satellite

  • A geosynchronous satellite is a satellite in geosynchronous orbit, with an orbital period the same as the Earth’s rotation period.
  • A satellite in such an orbit is at an altitude of approximately 36000 km above mean sea level.
  • A special case of the geosynchronous satellite is the geostationary satellite, which has a geostationary orbit– a circular geosynchronous orbit directly above the Earth’s equator.
  • Geostationary satellites have the special property of remaining permanently fixed in exactly the same position in the sky, as viewed from any location on Earth, meaning that ground-based antennas do not need to track them but can remain fixed in one direction.
  • Such satellites are often used for communication purposes.

Topic- GS-3- Science and Technology

Source-PIB

2. Climate Risk Index 2018

  • The report is prepared by Germanwatch, an independent development organization.
  • It placed India at 14th among countries most affected by extreme weather events in the last 20 years.
  • Four of our country’s neighbors are placed even higher. Myanmar is at rank 3, Bangladesh at 7, Pakistan at 8 and Nepal at 11 in the report.
  • It analyses quantified impacts of extreme weather events, in terms of fatalities and economic losses.
  • For assessing economic impact, the CRI also looks at losses per unit GDP of each country.

3. India third largest contributor to carbon emission

  • Global carbon emissions are set to hit an all-time high of 37.1 billion tonnes of CO2 in 2018, according to researchers at the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the Global Carbon Project.
  • India, the third-highest contributor, is projected to see emissions rise by 6.3% from 2017.
  • The 2.7% projected a global rise in 2018 has been driven by appreciable growth in coal use for the second year in a row, and sustained growth in oil and gas use.
  • The 10 biggest emitters in 2018 are China, U.S., India, Russia, Japan, Germany, Iran, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, and Canada.
  • The EU as a region of countries ranks third.
  • China’s emissions accounted for 27% of the global total, having grown an estimated 4.7% in 2018 and reaching a new all-time high.
  • Emissions in the U.S., which has withdrawn from its commitment to the Paris Agreement, account for 15% of the global total and look set to have grown about 2.5% in 2018 after several years of decline.
  • Limiting global warming to the 2015 Paris Agreement goal of keeping the global temperature increase this century to well below 2°C, would need carbon dioxide emissions to decline by 50% by 2030 and reach net zero by about 2050.

Topic- GS-3-Environment

Source- The Hindu

4. India now has a witness protection programme in place

  • Supreme Court on December 5, approved a Witness Protection Scheme drawn up by the government and asked the Centre, states and Union Territories to “enforce” it “in letter and spirit”.
  • The court held that the right to life would include the right of witnesses to testify freely in courts.
  • If one is unable to testify in courts due to threats or other pressures, then it is a clear violation of Article 21 of the Constitution.
  • The right to life guaranteed to the people of this country also includes in its fold the right to live in a society, which is free from crime and fear, and the right of witnesses to testify in courts without fear or pressure.”
  • The court said, “it shall be the ‘law’ under Article 141/142 of the Constitution, till the enactment of suitable Parliamentary and/or State Legislations on the subject”.

Related Information

  • The Scheme was drawn up by the Centre in 2018 with inputs from 18 states/Union Territories, legal services authorities of five states and open sources including civil society, three High Courts as well as from police personnel.
  • The scheme was launched with aim and objective “to ensure that the investigation, prosecution, and trial of criminal offenses is not prejudiced because witnesses are intimidated or frightened to give evidence without protection from violent or other criminal recrimination”.
  • The programme identifies “three categories of witnesses as per threat perception”
    (a) Category A: Those cases where threat extends to the life of witness or family members during the investigation, trial or even thereafter.
    (b) Category B: Those cases where the threat extends to safety, reputation or property of the witness or family members during the investigation or trial.
    (c) Category C: Cases where the threat is moderate and extends to harassment or intimidation of the witness or his family members, reputation or property during the investigation, trial or thereafter.
  • The expenses for the programme will be met from a Witness Protection Fund to be established by states and Union Territories.
  • The application for protection will have to be filed before the “Competent Authority” along with supporting documents.
  • The Witness Protection Order passed by the Competent Authority shall be implemented by the Witness Protection Cell of the state or Union Territory.

Topic-GS-2- Indian Polity

Source- Indian Express

5. Prohibition of Child Marriage

  • National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) said the Commission will act against anyone who promises to facilitate child marriage in Rajasthan in the run-up to the Assembly elections.
  • Rajasthan has the highest prevalence of child marriages in the country.
  • The National Family Health Survey 4 (2015-16) showed that one out of every four women— or 26.8 percent — aged 20-24 years in India was married off as a minor.
  • In Rajasthan, the prevalence is 65 percent.

Related Information

  • The Prohibition of Child Marriage Act presently allows for child marriages, between a boy of under 21 years and a girl under 18 years of age.
  • The Act has been grossly inadequate in preventing child marriages.
  • A proposal by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, seeking the Union Cabinet’s approval to an amendment to the Act and make child marriages void, has been pending.

NCPCR

  • It was set up in March 2007 under the Commissions for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005, an Act of Parliament (December 2005).

Topic- GS-2- Social Issues

Source- Indian Express

6. Odisha’s New Programme PEETHA For Transparency, Awareness Of Government Schemes

  • Odisha Chief Minister announced a new programme “PEETHA” for transparency and awareness on various government schemes.
  • The programme, the Peoples Empowerment Enabling Transparency and Accountability or PEETHA aims to improve transparency in the distribution of individual and social benefits.

Topic-GS-2-Government Schemes

Source- NDTV

7. Colistin ban a step in the right direction: CSE

  • Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) said that a ban on the use of the antibiotic colistin would be a step in the right direction.
  • India’s highest drug advisory body, the Drug Technical Advisory Board had recommended a stoppage on the use of colistin by poultry farmers.
  • Colistin is a last resort antibiotic which is administered to human beings when most other antibiotics fail to function.
  • However, it is indiscriminately used by the poultry industry to promote growth and prevent the occurrence of infections in chicken.
  • Increasing evidence has linked this to the development of resistance against colistin in humans.

Topic- GS-3- Science and Technology

Source- Down to Earth