A2Z -->> Special 26 -->> Miscellaneous -- >> Episode 1

Amartya Sen
  • made contributions to welfare economicssocial choice theory, economic and social justice, economic theories of famines, and indexes of the measure of well-being of citizens of developing countries
  • was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1998. 
  • was awarded with Bharat Ratna 'the highest civilian award in India' by the President of India in 1999
  • currently the Thomas W. Lamont University Professor and Professor of Economics and Philosophy at Harvard University.
  •  first Indian and the first Asian academic to head an Oxbridge college.
  •  also serves as the first Chancellor of the proposed Nalanda International University.

BCG Vaccine
  • vaccine against tuberculosis given to a new born baby
  • BCG vaccine can be anywhere from 0 to 80% effective in preventing tuberculosis for a duration of 15 years.
  • India introduced BCG mass immunization in 1948
  • A national TB control project was launched in 1962.
  • In 2012, India’s golden jubilee year of TB control, the World Health Organization (WHO) named India the worst performer among developing nations, with 17 per cent of the global population carrying 26 per cent of the global TB burden.

  • methods or devices used to prevent pregnancy
  • most effective methods of birth control are sterilization by means of vasectomy in males and tubal ligation in females, intrauterine devices (IUDs) and implantable contraceptives
  • a number of hormonal contraceptives including oral pillspatches,vaginal rings, and injections.
  • Less effective methods include barriers such as condomsdiaphragms and contraceptive sponge andfertility awareness methods
  • least effective methods are spermicides and withdrawal by the male before ejaculation. 
  • Sterilization, while highly effective, is not usually reversible; all other methods are reversible, most immediately upon stopping them

Dilip Sardesai
  • was a former IndianTest cricketer
  • was the only Goa-born cricketer to play for India, and was often regarded as India's best batsman against spin bowling
  • Goa Governement gives award in the name of 'Dilip Sardesai Award' to the sportsperson from Goa in his honour.

Earth Summit
  • United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), also known as the Rio SummitRio Conference, and Earth Summit
  •  was a major United Nations conference held in Rio de Janeiro from 3 June to 14 June 1992.
Earth Summit resulted in the following documents:
·         Rio Declaration on Environment and Development
·         Agenda 21
·         Forest Principles
Moreover, important legally binding agreements were opened for signature:
·         Convention on Biological Diversity
·         Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
·         United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification

Fotua/Sola and Eri Chaddar
·  Traditional wear of the men of Assam are dhuties manufactured at the mills and a shirt known as sola or fotua with an eri-chaddar. 
·  While in the villages the rich men wear headgear. 
·  In the paddy fields they wear japi, a type of hat. 

Green Card
  •  A Permanent Resident Card/Green Card refers to a US identity card that provides a national of another country the privilege to live and work in America.
  • A Permanent Resident Card holder is permitted to experience all the privileges of a US citizen, with the exception of the right to vote and the right to submit an application for federal jobs. 
  • It guarantees a faster and easier conversion into American citizenship.
  • When a green card holder reaches 5 years without any known legal setbacks, he is then qualified to apply for naturalization or citizenship.

Harish Hande
  • is an Indian social entrepreneur, who co-founded SELCO India in 1995. 
  • SELCO India is a social enterprise that provides sustainable energy services to the poor in India.
  • He was awarded with Asia's prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award for 2011, also sometimes referred to as Asia's Nobel Prize, 
  • for “his pragmatic efforts to put solar power technology in the hands of the poor, through his social enterprise SELCO India”

Ibrahim Keita
  •  President of Mali since -- 2013

Jaoquin Guzman Loera
  • Mexican drug lord who heads the Sinaloa Cartel, a criminal organization named after the Mexican Pacific coast state of Sinaloa where it was initially formed. Known as "El Chapo Guzmán" 
  • Guzmán is wanted by the governments of Mexico and the United States and by INTERPOL

  • Japan's first robot astronaut, developed by Tomotaka Takahashi, to accompany Koichi Wakata, the first Japanese commander of the International Space Station.
  • arrived on the ISS on August 10th 2013
  • The robot's capabilities include voice and speech recognition, natural language processing, speech synthesis and telecommunications, as well as facial recognition and video recording. 
  • Kirobo is specially designed to navigate zero-gravity environments and will assist Commander Wakata in various experiments.
  • Its main goal is to see how well robots and humans can interact, hopefully leading the way to robots taking more active roles in assisting astronauts on missions

Liebig's method
  •  developed a method of analyzing the amounts of carbon and hydrogen present in organic compounds.

Mekhela (Assam traditional wear)
  • Mekhela is the long skirt and the upper apparel is known as riha. 
  • Graceful and intricate red colored designs at the end of riha makes it very attractive. 
  • Most of the tribal women wear variations of mekhala and chadar.
  • During Bihu the Assamese women wear their traditional dress made of muga silk. 
  • The state is world famous for muga silk which is often called the golden silk. 

North Atlantic Drift

  • is a powerful warm ocean current that continues the Gulf Stream northeast. 
  • West of Continental Europe it splits into two major branches.
  • One branch goes southeast, later to become the Canary Current as it passes northwest Africa and turns southwest. 
  • The other major branch continues north along the coast of northwestern Europe. It is thought to have a considerable warming influence on the climate, although a minority have disputed this.
  • Other branches include the Irminger Current and the Norwegian Current
  • Driven by the global thermohaline circulation (THC), the North Atlantic Current is also oftenconsidered part of the wind-driven Gulf Stream which goes further east and north from the North American coast, across the Atlantic and into the Arctic Ocean.

Oxalic Acid
  • Oxalic acid is an organic compound  It is a colorless crystalline solid that dissolves in water to give colorless solutions.
  • Oxalic acid's main applications include cleaning or bleaching, especially for the removal of rust (iron complexing agent), e.g. Bar Keepers Friend is an example of a household cleaner containing oxalic acid. Its utility in rust removal agents is due to its forming a stable, water soluble salt with ferric iron, ferrioxalate ion.
  • Oxalic acid is an important reagent in lanthanide chemistry.
  • Vaporized oxalic acid, or a 3.2% solution of oxalic acid in sugar syrup, is used by some beekeepers as a miticide against the parasitic varroa miteOxalic acid is rubbed onto completed marble sculptures to seal the surface and introduce a shine

Rajat Gupta
  • Indian businessman and philanthropist who was the Managing Director (chief executive) of management consultancy McKinsey & Company from 1994 to 2003.
  • Gupta was convicted in June 2012 on insider trading charges of four criminal felony counts of conspiracy and securities fraud
  • He was sentenced in October 2012 to two years in prison, an additional year on supervised release and ordered to pay $5 million in fines.In May 2013 he remained free on appeal 

Sutlej River
  • sometimes known as the Red River.easternmost tributary of the Indus River
  • source is Lake Rakshastal in Tibet.
  • Shipki La pass, entering India in Himachal Pradesh state.
  • The waters of the Sutlej are allocated to India under the Indus Waters Treaty between India and Pakistan, and are mostly diverted to irrigation canals in India.
  • There are several major hydroelectric projects on the Sutlej, including the 1,000 MW Bhakra Dam, the 1,000 MW Karcham Wangtoo Hydroelectric Plant, and the 1,530 MW Nathpa Jhakri Dam.
  •  There has been a proposal to build a 214-kilometre (133 mi) long heavy freight canal, known as the Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL),in India to connect the Sutlej and Yamuna rivers.
  •  However, the proposal has met with obstacles and has been referred to the Supreme Court of India

Toda tribe (T.N.)
  • small pastoral community who live on the isolated Nilgiri plateau of Southern India
  • Before the 18th century, the Toda coexisted locally with other communities, including the Kota, and Kuruba, in a loose caste-like community organisation in which the Toda were the top ranking.
  • The Toda population has hovered in the range 700 to 900 during the last century.
  • They traditionally trade dairy products with their Nilgiri neighbour people.
  • Toda religion centres on the buffalo; consequently, rituals are performed for all dairy activities as well as for the ordination of dairymen-priests. 
  • The religious and funerary rites provide the social context in which complex poetic songs about the cult of the buffalo are composed and chanted
  •  During the last quarter of the 20th century, some Toda pasture land was lost due to agriculture by outsiders or afforestation by the State Government of Tamil Nadu
  • This has threatened to undermine Toda culture by greatly diminishing the buffalo herds; however during the last decade both Toda society and culture have also become the focus of an international effort at culturally sensitive environmental restoration.
  • The Toda lands are now a part of The Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, a UNESCO-designated International Biosphere Reserve and is under consideration by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee for selection as a World Heritage Site.
United Nations Day 
  •  24 October

Victor-Meyer Apparatus
  •  is the standard laboratory method for determining the molecular weight of a volatile liquid.
  •  In this method, a known mass of a volatile solid or liquid under examination is converted into its vapour form by heating in a Victor Meyer's tube. 
  • The vapour displaces its own volume of air. The volume of air displaced at experimental temperature and pressure is calculated. 
  • Then volume of air displaced atStandard Temperature and Pressure is calculated. Using this, mass of air displaced at 2.24x10-2m3 of vapor at STP is calculated. 
  • This value represents the molecular mass of the substance. 

World Development Report
  • The World Development Report (WDR) is an annual report published since 1978 by the World Bank
  • Each WDR provides in-depth analysis of a specific aspect of economic development
  • Past reports have considered such topics as agriculture, youth, equity, public services delivery, the role of the state, transition economies, labour, infrastructure,health, the environment, and poverty. 
  • The reports are the Bank's best-known contribution to thinking about development.
  • The World Development Report 2011: Conflict, Security, and Development looked at conflict as a challenge to economic development.

Xaxa Committee
  • a high level committee on Saturday to prepare a position paper on the current socio-economic, health and educational status of tribals that will also “suggest policy initiatives as well as effective outcome-oriented measures to improve development indicators and strengthen public service delivery to STs.” 
  • The committee is expected to submit its findings and recommendations in nine months, ahead of next year’s general elections.
  • The country’s tribal population of 8.6 per cent is concentrated in the north-east, particularly in Nagaland, Mizoram, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh, and in those parts of the country now over run by Maoists — Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa and parts of Bihar and Maharashtra.
Chairing the committee will be tribal expert and eminent sociologist Virginius Xaxa, who was recently appointed a member of Sonia Gandhi’s National Advisory Council. Dr Xaxa, currently teaching at Delhi University, is the author of State, Society and Tribes: Issues in Post-Colonial India (2008) and the seminal article “Tribes as Indigenous People of India,” considered essential reading for an understanding of India’s tribal communities.
  • The others are Usha Ramanathan, Joseph Bara, K.K. Misra, Abhay Bang and Sunila Basant, all of whom are familiar with the problems of tribals, coming as they do from diverse backgrounds — law, history, anthropology, medicine and administration.
The committee is expected to focus on how tribal communities have been affected by involuntary displacement and enforced migration; whether rapid urbanisation has shrunk their original habitats, and which new avenues of employment and livelihood are available to them. It is also expected to map their asset base and income levels, changes in the patterns of ownership and productivity of their immovable assets, the role public policy and the legal framework in facilitating/inhibiting such changes, the level of their socio-economic development, their relative share of public and private sector employment, and what steps have been taken by States/UTs for capacity building and improving their employability.

Access to education, health services
It will examine whether tribal people have adequate access to education and health services, municipal infrastructure, bank credit, and other services provided by the government/public sector entities; and the level of social infrastructure (schools, health centres, ICDS centres etc.) located in areas of tribal concentration in comparison to the general level of such infrastructure in various States. Finally, the committee will look at whether protective legislation such as the Prevention of Atrocities Act, Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, the Forest Rights Act and the Food Security Ordinance, etc are being implemented effectively.

Yamuna Expressway
  •  formerly known as Taj Expressway, is a 6-lane (extendable to 8 lanes), 165 km long, controlled-access expressway, connecting Greater Noida with Agra in the  Uttar Pradesh
  • expressway starts from Greater Noida and ends on NH 2towards Kanpur and Agra.
  • Yamuna Expressway project was implemented by Jaypee Group.
  • The UP government had proposed a Taj International Aviation Hub (TIAH) with a greenfield airport at Jewar, which is at a distance of about 70 km from the Indira Gandhi International Airport.
  • The new airport will, tentatively, come up between Agra and Mathura.

  • The Zollverein, or German Customs Union, was a coalition of German states formed to manage tariffs and economic policies within their territories. 
  • Organised by the 1833 Zollverein Treaties, the Zollverein formally came into existence on 1 January 1834. 
  • However, its foundations had been in development from 1818 with the creation of a variety of custom unions among the German states. 
  • By 1866, the Zollverein included most of the German states. 
  • The foundation of the Zollverein was the first instance in history in which independent states had consummated a full economic union without the simultaneous creation of a political federation or union.
  • Prussia was the prime motivating force behind the creation of the customs union. 
  • Austria was excluded from the Zollverein because of its highly protected industry; this economic exclusion exacerbated the Austro-Prussian rivalry for dominance in Central Europe, particularly in the 1850s and 1860s.
  • After the founding of the German Empire in 1871, the Empire assumed the control of the customs union.  

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