GS PAPER II NEWS

Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS)

Why in News

The Field Marshal Manekshaw Essay Competition (FMMEC) celebrated its third successive year (2020-21) and the winner of National Level Field Marshal Manekshaw Essay Competition (FMMEC) 2020-21 was announced by the Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS).

Key Points


  • Theme of the year 2020-21 was “National Security and Strategic Studies.
  • The competition was aimed to cover a wide range of issues pertaining to National security.
  • The Field Marshal Manekshaw Essay Competition (FMMEC) celebrated its third successive year (2020-21), with the objective:
  • To keep the young minds engaged in the most troubled times that the world is experiencing with the global pandemic – COVID-19.
  • This year Competition held with 104 registrations, following students from six different Colleges/Universities spread across the country.
  • In Paper Category, Amiya Krishna from Himachal Pradesh National Law University, Shimla won the Competition on the title ‘Institutionalizing Open-Source Intelligence (OSINT) in India: An Analysis’.
  • In the Brief Category, Parshuram Sahoo from Central University of Gujarat, won the Competition on the topic ‘Civil-Military Relations in India: Role of Military in National Security Decision Making.’

About Field Marshal Manekshaw Essay Competition (FMMEC)

  • The Field Marshal Manekshaw Essay Competition (FMMEC) was initiated in 2018-19.
  • It was initiated by the Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS) under the patronage of Indian Army.
  • The national level essay competition is named after India’s grand strategistField Marshal Sam Manekshaw.
  • CLAWS organizes its flagship national level essay competition to inculcate strategic thinking amongst the youth especially among university students.
  • The competition has two categories:
  • Manekshaw Papers (8000-10,000 words) and
  • Issue Brief (3500-5000 words).

About Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS)

  • The Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS) was established on 2004, at New Delhi, India.
  • It is an independent think tank on strategic studies and land warfare.
  • It covers national security issues, conventional military operations and sub-conventional warfare.
  • It was registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 and is a membership-based organization.
  • As per ‘2017 Global Go to Think Tank Report’ published by University of Pennsylvania, USA, it has been ranked 67th in the World Top Defense and National Security Think Tanks.

GS PAPER II NEWS

Project DANTAK

Why in News

Recently, Project DANTAK is commemorating its Diamond Jubilee in Bhutan.

Key Points

  • Indian Ambassador to Bhutan laid a floral wreath at the DANTAK Memorial in Simtokha on April 24, 2021.
  • It was a fitting tribute to the sacrifices made by personnel of DANTAK in strengthening the bonds of friendship between India and Bhutan.
  • It may be recalled that over 1,200 DANTAK personnel laid down their lives while constructing important infrastructure in Bhutan.

Project DANTAK

  • Project DANTAK was established on April 24, 1961 which was the result of the visionary leadership of His Majesty the Third King and then Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru.
  • It was aimed to construct the pioneering motorable roads in the Kingdom to give boost to the socio-economic connectivity and growth in Bhutan.
  • It was completed the road connecting Samdrup Jongkhar to Trashigang in 1968.
  • In 1968, Thimphu was connected to Phuentsholing by DANTAK.
  • Other constructions initiated by the project include the construction of
  • Paro Airport,
  • Yonphula Airfield,
  • Thimphu – Trashigang Highway,
  • Telecommunication & Hydro Power Infrastructure,
  • Sherubtse College,
  • Kanglung and India House Estate.
  • The medical and education facilities established by DANTAK in far flung areas were often the first in those locations.
  • The famous Takthi Canteen midway between Phuentsholing and Thimphu has been a compulsory stop for travelers.

Relation between India and Bhutan

  • In British India:

  • After signing treaty with Britishers in 1910, Bhutan became a protectorate of British India which allow the British to “guide” its foreign affairs and defense.
  • After Independence of India:
  • Bhutan was one of the first to recognize India’s independence in 1947 and both nations fostered close relations.
  • 1949 Treaty between India and Bhutan
  • On 8th August, 1949 Bhutan and India signed the Treaty of Friendship, with the aim to establish peace between the two nations without any interference in each other’s internal affairs.
  • Bhutan agreed to let India “guide” its foreign policy and both nations would consult each other closely on foreign and defense affairs.
  • This treaty also established free trade and extradition protocols.
  • Despite good relations, India and Bhutan did not complete a detailed demarcation of their borders until the period between 1973 and 1984.
  • Border demarcation talks with India generally resolved disagreements except for several small sectors, including the middle zone between Sarpang and Geylegphug and the eastern frontier with the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh.
  • Indo-Bhutan Relations since 1972
  • Bhutan gradually began assert an independent attitude in foreign affairs by:
  • Joining the United Nations in 1971,
  • Recognizing Bangladesh and
  • Signing a new trade agreement in 1972 that provided an exemption from export duties for goods from Bhutan to third countries.
  • Bhutan exerted its independent stance at the:
  • Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit conference in Havana, Cuba in 1979, by voting with China and some Southeast Asian countries rather than with India on the issue of allowing Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge to be seated at the conference.
  • From 2003 to 2004, the Royal Bhutanese Army conducted operations against anti-India insurgents at Assam that were operating bases in Bhutan and using its territory to carry out attacks on Indian soil.
  • Treaty of 2007:
  • India re-negotiated the 1949 treaty with Bhutan and signed a new treaty of friendship in 2007.
  • It replaced old one with the provision requiring Bhutan to take India’s guidance on foreign policy with broader sovereignty and not require Bhutan to obtain India’s permission over arms imports.
  • Border Relations:
  • India shares its border of 605 kilometers with Bhutan.
  • It is the largest trading partner, accounting for 98% of its exports and 90% of its imports.
  • Bhutan shares its border with four Indian States: Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, West Bengal and Sikkim.
  • It serves as a buffer between India and China.

Conclusion

  • Over the years, DANTAK has met the myriad infrastructure requirements in Bhutan in accordance with the vision of Their Majesties and the aspirations of the people in a symbiotic manner.
  • As DANTAK celebrates six decades in Bhutan, the project reaffirms its commitment to support the march of Bhutan towards realizing the dreams of His Majesty Druk Gyalpo, the plans of the Royal Government of Bhutan and aspirations of the people of the kingdom.

GS PAPER II NEWS

Chandler Good Government Index (CGGI)

Why in News

India has been ranked 49th in the Chandler Good Government Index (CGGI).

Key Points


  • According to the IDFC Foundation and IDFC Institute and CGGI, the “Civil service innovation and capacity building is a key focus for the Indian government”.
  • Finland topped the index in Good Governance, followed by the Switzerland and Singapore.
  • Venezuela ranked bottom in the list with 104th rank.

About Chandler Good Government Index (CGGI)

  • The Report of CGGI published annually by the Chandler Institute of Governance.
  • It measures the effectiveness of governments in 104 countries across the world.
  • It is a tool to support governments in:
  • Monitoring and benchmarking their capabilities,
  • Identifying strengths and weaknesses, and
  • Providing practical and implementable guidance on building government capabilities.
  • The index focuses on seven pillars:
  • Leadership and foresight;
  • Robust laws and policies;
  • Strong institutions;
  • Financial stewardship;
  • Attractive marketplace;
  • Global influence and reputation; and
  • Helping people rise.
  • It is launched to address the increasing expectations of citizens, governments around the world need to understand how building strong government capabilities enhances opportunities and trust.

About Chandler Institute of Governance (CIG)

  • The CIG is an international non-profit organization, headquartered in Singapore.
  • It believes that good governments are the foundation of flourishing, prosperous communities and nations.
  • It highlights a key need for ‘pracademics’ in government – people who combine a rigorous understanding of research and data with a practical and grounded sense of what governments need to do to succeed.

GS PAPER III

Single Crystal Blade Technology

Why in News

Recently Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has developed single crystal blades technology.

Key Points

  • It supplied 60 of these blades to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) as part of their indigenous helicopter development program for helicopter engine application.
  • It is part of Defence Metallurgical Research Laboratory (DMRL), a premium laboratory of DRDO, to develop five sets (300 in number) of single crystal high pressure turbine (HPT) blades using a nickel-based super alloy.
  • The supply of remaining four sets will be completed in due course.

Single Crystal Blades Technology

  • It is of complex shape and geometry, manufactured out of Nickel based superalloys capable of withstanding high temperatures of operation are used.
  • Very few countries in the world such as USA, UK, France and Russia have the capability to design and manufacture such Single Crystal (SX) components.
  • Complete vacuum investment casting process to realize the blades, including die design, wax pattering, ceramic molding, actual casting of components non-destructive evaluation (NDE), heat treatment and dimensional measurement, has been established at DMRL.
  • Special ceramic composition had to be formulated for making strong ceramic molds which can withstand metallostatic pressure of liquid CMSX-4 alloy at 1500°C and above during casting operation.
  • The challenge of maintaining the required temperature gradient has also been overcome by optimizing the casting parameters.

Defence Metallurgical Research Laboratory (DMRL)

  • It is a research laboratory of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), located at Hyderabad.
  • It is responsible for the development and manufacture of complex metals and materials required for modern warfare and weapon systems.
  • DMRL operationalized as a part of the Ordnance Factory Board at its Metal & Steel Factory in Calcutta in the year 1951 as the Technical Development Establishment (Metals).
  • Later it was upgraded as DMRL in 1956.

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)

  • DRDO is an agency under the Department of Defence Research and Development in Ministry of Defence of the Government of India instituted in 1958.
  • Its Objective is:
  • To create scientific temperament and environment among scientists through close interactions among themselves, and
  • To create awareness among the scientists regarding latest developments in various fields of science and technology.

Way Forward

  • Helicopters used in strategic and defense applications need compact and powerful aero-engines for their reliable operation at extreme conditions.
  • To achieve this target, DRDO developed state-of-the-art Single Crystal Blades to give boost to the Defence Technology of India.

GS PAPER II NEWS

Artificial Intelligence

Why in News


According to the Project Management Institute (PMI), the global enterprises are expected to invest $98 billion in artificial intelligence (AI) by 2023 and India will share in it about $1 billion.

Challenges in Enhancing Artificial Intelligence Project:

  • As per PMI’s estimates, 55% of this proposed global investment may waste due to lack of familiarity or understanding of newer practices, technologies and tools and inability to optimize data and this wastage in India will be $484 million.
  • The poor management practices may lead to global losses of $11 billion, that is 11.4% of the total investments of $98 billion.
  • More than half of AI investments, expected to be done by 2023, in India may also go waste.
  • Project management methodology and framework are imported from traditional (legacy) practices and therefore are misfit for AI and Data Science projects.

Significance of Enhancing Artificial Intelligence Project:

  • Many companies are deploying AI projects through trial-and-error methods.
  • The amount of experimentation that goes into AI projects is far greater than traditional projects.
  • In AI, World is trying to imagine the future to create a new reality.
  • To avoid failure, it is also critical to achieving 80% of the outcome from 20% of the data instead of going ocean surfing.

Artificial Intelligence

  • It is wide-ranging branch of computer science concerned with building smart machines capable of performing tasks that typically require human intelligence.
  • It is an interdisciplinary science with multiple approaches, but advancements in machine learning and deep learning are creating a paradigm shift in virtually every sector of the tech industry.
  • The way fraud can be detected by observing users’ credit card spending patterns is an example of artificial intelligence.

MISCELLANEOUS

OSCAR Award 2021

Why in News

Nomadland emerged as the big winner at the Oscars 2021 with three major prizes, including a history making award for director Chloe Zhao, as Hollywood celebrated its most glamorous night with a unique pandemic era gala.

Key Points


  • The 93rd Academy Awards or Oscars 2021, held on 25th April 2021, honored the best films of 2020 and early 2021.
  • It was held virtually for first time in history, held at Union Station and the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles, California, U. S. due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
  • It was originally planned to organized on 28 February 2021.

Highlights of OSCAR 2021:

  • Nomadland won three Oscars, including Best Picture.
  • Anthony Hopkins became the winner in the category of the oldest Best Actor for The Father.
  • Frances McDormand became the seventh person to win a third acting Oscar for her Best Actress win for Nomadland.
  • Chloé Zhao become the first woman of color to be awarded best director for Nomadland, and the second woman after Kathryn Bigelow.
  • Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award was presented to Tyler Perry (for his philanthropic and charitable endeavors in recent years), and Motion Picture and Television Fund (for the emotional and financial relief services it provides to the members of the entertainment industry)
  • The annual Governors Awards were cancelled by the Academy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the winners were incorporated into the Oscar ceremony.
  • For the first time, there were no official winners of the Academy Honorary Award.

About OSCARS

  • The Oscars presented annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, located in Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
  • This award is given to recognize achievement in the film industry.
  • The awards were first presented in 1929, and winners receive a gold-plated statuette commonly called Oscar.
  • The Winners of Oscar are chosen from the following 24 categories.
  • The Academy Awards ceremony was first broadcast by radio in 1930 and was televised for the first time in 1953.
  • The 92nd Academy Awards ceremony, honoring the best films of 2019, was held on February 9, 2020.