Thursday, 21 June 2012

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

ASEAN or the Association of South East Asian Nations

ASEAN : Basic Facts                                source: PD/June/2011
1. ASEAN or the Association of South East Asian Nations was founded on Aug.8, 1967 at Bangkok by five founder members : Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines and Malaysia. Brunei joined it in 1984, Vietnam in 1995, Laos and Myanmar in 1997 and Cambodia joined ASEAN in 1999. Thus, at present, it has ten members.
2. According to the charter of ASEAN, it has following objectives :
(a) It aims to promote economic growth, social progress and culture development in the region.
(b) To facilitate among members the cooperation in economic, social and culture fields.
(c) To provide a forum for the peaceful settlement of disputes among member states.
(d) To promote peace and stability in the region.
 3. ASEAN has a distinct way of functioning, which is known as the 'ASEAN way', characterised by certain fundamental principles, which were outlined during the first ASEAN Summit in 1976, held at Bali, Indonesia. These principles are contained in the treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) signed by member during the first Summit. The main principles underlying the ASEAN way are : the respect for the independence, sovereignty, equality and territorial integrity of all nations; right of each state to lead a national life without external coercion and precessure, non-interference in the internal affairs of nations; abide by the norm of not using force or threat of force in mutual relations and deepening cooperation among members as well as resolution of differences by peaceful means.
The 'ASEAN way' has been instrumental in ensuring that ASEAN keeps away from regional and domestic controversies and tensions and concentrates on the main agenda of economic cooperation.
 4. ASEAN has gradually expanded its activities from economic cooperation to security matters and community building. It has tried to involve non-member nations in its activities; from economic cooperation to security matters and community building. It has tried to involve non-member nations in its activities; which play significant role in the region. Thus, in 1997, it founded ASEAN + 3 mechanism in which three leading countries of this region-Japan, China and South Korea are also activity involved in its activities.
 In 1994, ASEAN founded ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) to discuss security related matters and to ensure peace and stability in the region. All important actors including the USA, USSR, China are members of ARF. Similarly, it has founded East Asia Summit in2005 to facilitate the community building process in East Asia. India is a founder member of East Asia. Its meetings are held on annual basis at the same place and time, where the annual ASEAN Summits are held. The fifth East Asia Summit was held at Hanoi(Vietnam) in Oct. 2010. It should be noted that India joined the ARF in 1996.

Kyoto Protocol

Kyoto Protocol:
The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement linked to the United Nations Framework Convention on climate change. It was adopted in Kyoto, Japan, on 11th December 1997, and came into force on 16th February 2005. The Kyoto Protocol recognized the fact that developed countries are principally responsible for the current high levels of greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere because of their long years of industrial activity. The major feature of the Kyoto Protocol is that it sets binding targets for 37 industrialized countries, and the European community, for reducing green gas emissions.

The Microsoft Surface table has been re-branded 'PixelSense.'

The Microsoft Surface table has been re-branded 'PixelSense.'
I thought Microsoft's new tablet was being added to the Microsoft Surface "line" of devices, from a branding perspective. But apparently, the tablet is "stealing" the brand. The original Microsoft Surface table is reportedly being re-branded as the "PixelSense."If this is true, it feels like a mistake to me, possibly driven by internal silo psychology more than consumer branding.

The old Surface group inside Microsoft and the new Surface group are clearly two very different groups. But consumers don't care about that.I mean, the idea of Microsoft's tablet as a small, personal, consumer and portable version of their Surface table is very appealing, conceptually. They're both multi-touch devices.I think this is a mistake.
~Mike Elgan

Monday, 18 June 2012

Extradition Treaties

Extradition is the surrender of a criminal to one country by another. It also helps is maintaining the territoriality of the penal code which says that a country should not apply its criminal law to a person who committed an offense outside its territories except when the crime is related to the countries national interest. The process is regulated by treaties between the two countries.
 What are the internationally accepted conditions for extradition?
There is a general consensus about few conditions of extradition. The crime should fulfill the criterion of dual criminality, i.e it is a punishable offence in both the countries. The country A cannot request B to extradite a person who is charged with a homosexuality related offence. Persons charged for political reasons are generally not extradited. Some countries refuse to extradite if the kind of expected punishment is abolished or is not administered in their own territories. For instance Australia, Canada, Macao, Mexico, and most of the European nations refuse to extradite a criminal if the person in question might get capital punishment after his extradition.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Weather different from climate

Weather different from climate:
Climate and weather are the two aspects of meteorology. 
Weather is the day-to-day state of the atmosphere in a region. It deals with sunshine, rain, cloud cover, winds, hail, snow, sheet, freezing rain, flooding, blizzards, storms, heat waves and other conditions on a particular day, or at a particular time, in most places, weather can change from minute-to-minute, and day-to-day.
Climate, on other hand, is how the atmosphere 'behaves' over relatively long periods of time. When scientists talk about climate, they're looking at averages of precipitation, temperature,humidity, sunshine, wind velocity, phenomena such as fog, frost, and other measures of the weather that occur over a long period in a particular place. Weather varies all the time, but climate doesn't vary nearly as quickly.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

General Knowledge For Competition Exams, Agricuture

General Knowledge For Competition Exams

  • Which element plays an important role in nitrogen metabolism ? -Molybdenum
  • Apis florea, apis dorsata and apis cerana are the species of - Honeybee
  • For how many years is sheep able to breed ? - 10 years
  • The major fungi that affects food grains in storage is -Mucor
  • Topography, soil age and parent material are the natural factors which affects -Soil fertility
  • The leaching loss of Nitrogen is more in the form of -Nitrate
  • Which is the perennial variety of Elephant Grass (Napier Grass) ? -Pusa Giant Napier
  • Sharadmani is the suitable -Rabi maize variety
  • Green Ear, Ergot, Rust are the diseases associated with -Bajra
  • Which disease occurs when more sorghum is consumed ? -Pellagra
  •  The fungus which is used in Alcohol industry is : -yeast
  • Pomology is a study of: -Fruits
  • The father of White Revolution in India is : -Vargheese Kurein
  • The rank India holds in fish production is : -Third
  • TRIFED stands for : -Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Limited
  • National Horticulture Mission was started on : -5 May 2005
  • Oil seeds, sugar Crops, Fiber Crops, Narcotic Crops and Beverage Crops are : -Commercial Crops
  • TG-38B, SG-99, GG-8, GG-16 and Vasundhra (Dh-101) are the crop varieties which belong to : -Groundnut
  • Who said "Everything else can wait but not agriculture" : - Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru
  • National Research Cent re for Plant Biotechnology is located in : -New Delhi
  • National Fisheries Development Board was set up on : -September 9, 2006

General Knowledge For Competition Exams Indian Polity and Constitution

Indian Polity and Constitution
  • The right to equal opportunity for all citizens in matters of public employment has been enshrined in : -Article 16
  • In the Constitution of India, the idea of Uniform Civil Code is provided in : -Directive Principle of State Policy
  • The voting age in India was reduced to 18 years from 21 years in 1989 by : the 61st Constitutional -Amendment Act of 1988
  • Indian Constitution provides only for : -Single Citizenship
  • In which schedule to the Constitution of India have the powers, authority and responsibilities of municipalities been mentioned? :  -Twelfth Schedule
  • The provision of suspension of Fundamental Rights is borrowed from : -Weimer Constitution of Germany
  • Which Article makes a provision of Administrative Tribunals? : -Article 323-A
  • As per the Preamble of the Constitution of India, the nature of Indian State is of : -a sovereign, socialist, secular, democratic and republican polity
  • The Indian National Congress adopted a resolution to establish a socialistic pattern of society in : - its Avadi session in 1955
  • The three words which were added in the Preamble to the Constitution of India by the 42nd Constitutional Amendment Act 1976 are : - socialist, secular and integrity
  • Article 1 describes India that is Bharat as : -a Union of States
  • The Chief Election Commissioner of India holds office for a period of: - Six year or till the age of 65 years whichever is earlier
  • The Sarkaria Commission was set up for the review of the relation between : - The Centre and State
  • The Speaker of the Lok Sabha votes only : - In case of tie
  • Article 24 of the Constitution prohibits employment of children in any factory below the age of : -14 years 
  •  Which amendment of the Constitution reduced the voting age from 21 years to 18 years ? : - 61st Constitutional Amendment Act (1988)
  •  Which Parliamentary Standing Committee is concerned with the regularity of the expenditure of the government ? :- Public Account Committee
  •  Equal Pay or Equal Work for both men and women is : -A Fundamental Right
  • Parliament has power to legislate with respect to a matter in the State List provided it is in : -The National Interest
  • In which Schedule to the Constitution of India has the list of national languages has been mentioned ? :-8th Schedule
  • In which year was Tashkent Pact signed between India and Pakistan ? :- In the year 1966
  •  Indian Constitution has introduced adult francis i.e., :-Every adult above 18 has the right to vote
  • National Anthem (Jan Gan Man) was adopted on :-January24,1950
  • The Preamble to the Constitution of India Proclaims India as :-a Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic
  • Member of Parliament fund, at present stands at :-Rs. 5 crore per annum
  • The provision for formation of new states and alteration of areas, boundaries or names of existing states in mentioned in :-Article3
  • The provision as the administration of Tribal Areas in the States of Assam, Meghalay, Tripura and Mizoram is mentioned in :-Sixth Schedule to the Constitution
  • The first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India was :-Hiralal J.Kania
  • The provision of National Emergency is laid down in :-Article 352
  • Which part of Indian Constitution deals with Official Language? :-Part XVII
  • The Vice-President of India draws a salary of :- Rs. 1,25,000 per month

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Global Warming Affects Desert Climates

How does global warming affect desert climates?  
source: Tell Me Why June 2012
We know that our planet is undergoing major climate change and that the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is rising significantly. This has a major effect on the climate of deserts became hotter since 1976.
Global warning is expected to induce an overall increase in rainfall. However, since regions in the high latitudes are expected to warm more than those in mid and low latitudes, there will be more rainfall in high latitude deserts and less in sub tropical ones. As a result, desert in the lower latitudes are expected to grow. A new study has found that, as deserts become hotter their soil releases nitrogen in these arid environments, scientists believe, will result in a loss of whatever plant life there is in deserts.

Fly Ash in Agriculture

FLY ASH IN AGRICULTURE source: science reporter June 2012
1. Improves permeability status of soil.
2. Improves fertility status of soil/agriculture yield.
3. Improves soil textural properties and soil aeration.
4. Reduces soil bulk density and crust and compact formation.
5. Improves water-holding capacity/porosity.
6. Makes favorable and optimum soil pH for crops. 
7. Provides several micro nutrients such as Mo, B, Mn, Fe, Zn, Cu, etc.
8. Source of many macro nutrients like Mg, S, K, P, Ca, etc.
9. Alternative for gypsum for reclamation of sodic soils and lime for reclamation of acidic soils.
10. Improves soil microbial activities in combination with other organic amendments.   

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Reducing Carbon Footprint

Reducing Carbon Footprint  source: science reporter June 2012
Are conferences a waste of time and a drain on the resources? Recently, in the United States, head
have been rolling over since it was discovered that neatly one-million dollars were spent on a
conference held in Las Vegas in 2010 for General Services Administration (GSA) bureaucrats featuring a
mind reader, a clown, a comedian, free bicycles and lavish receptions in resort suites. A recent
editorial in the journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) even  questions the utility of
conferences, arguing that "there is virtually no evidence supporting the utility of most conferences."
And then. there is the increasing carbon footprint of conferences in a 2008 report in the British
Medical Journal, Malcolm Greene pegged at some 10,000 tons of carbon for participants attending a
mid-sized international conference. There are also the bulky abstracts, the innumerable fliers and
publicity material for which quite a few trees have laid down their lives and most of which have a
lifetime not more than a newspaper's.
But there are those who argues that meetings and conferences allow people in different areas and
fields and settings to mix leading to fertilization of new ideas, fructification of existing ones and
uncovering of new research opportunities. There are also the opportunities for young scientists and
even students to soak in the academic atmosphere and perhaps a chance that a truly inspiring talk
could catalyze and trigger their creative juices. These are benefits that cannot be denied.
While certainly working on enhancing the academic utility of conferences and meetings, can we not
at least make such events a little less burdensome on the environment and with a reduced climate
impact? There is a worldwide movement towards minimizing the carbon footprint of conferences. And
there are several aspects of conferences that provide this opportunity such as the choice of venue,
registration, transportation, food and beverage services, paper use and waste reduction.
Recently, in a report the American Chemical Society highlighted its efforts aimed at 'sustainable'
meeting, counting among others: a) Reducing carbon footprint of hotel shuttles (to carry passengers)
by 50%; b) Issuing of its meeting programme as a mobile app and PDF download- it claimed that
offering a digital alternative saved 1,600 pounds of paper and associated freight; c) Donating all
usable, uneaten food from meeting events to local community groups; d) Giving attendees reusable
water bottles because bottled water has a huge carbon footprint.
Some of the other climate-friendly practices that are being explored are minimizing waste, choosing
venue that employ energy and water efficient equipment and practices or use renewable energy, using
alternative fuel vehicles for ferrying guests, arranging accommodation for guest at walkable distances
from the venue, and minimizing use of paper and where essential using recycled paper. A compost
programme for all food waste could reduce the amount of waste going to landfill thus cutting down on
emission of methane.                                                                                         Hasan Jawaid Khan

The Indian Botanic Garden

The Indian Botanic Garden (Hawrah)source: science reporter June 2012
 now called Acharya Jagdish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden, completes 225 years of glorious existence this year. It is a unique national heritage.
The Indian Botanic Garden is not only home to plants and trees. Birds of different species can also be found in the garden. It is also to a number of snake species as well as rodents.
Though the Botanic Garden's glorious past cannot return but anyone who comes here will realize that the Indian Botanic Garden is a different world of sylvan green, an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.


 BOTANICAL SURVEY OF INDIA resource: science reporter June 2012
The Botanical Survey of India has its Headquarters at Kolkata with Pharmacognosy, Cryptogamy, Ecology, Plant Chemistry, Flora Cell, Palynology, Library, Publication Unit and Technical Section located at Kolkata/Howrah. Besides, four other unit of the Survey, viz., AJC Bose Indian Botanic Garden, Howrah and  Central National Herbarium. Howrah, Central Botanical Laboratory. Howrah and the Industrial Section, Indian Museum, Kolkata. In addition, the Survey has 11 Regional Centers in different bio-geographical region of the country.
 The Survey is currently engaged in following activities to achieve these objective:
  1. Survey and exploration of plants, especially in fragile ecosystems and protected areas, including Antarctica
  2.  Documentation of plant diversity at national, regional, state, district and ecosystem level. Documentation of indigenous knowledge of plant resources
  3.  Maintaining national botanical collections and museum exhibits centrally at Central National Herbarium, Howrah and museum exhibits centrally at Central National Herbarium, Howrah and Indian Museum, Industrial Museum, Kolkata and all its Centre Offices located in different regions of India
  4. Cultivation, multiplication and ex situ conservation of threatened, endemic and economically important species
  5. Pharmacognostic studies on species listed in Schedule VI of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972: Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and Negative List of Export (PN-47)
  6.  Capacity building in taxonomy
  7.  Environmental Impact Assessment on flora (wherever specifically asked by the administrative ministry)
  8.  Digitization of herbarium specimens
  9.  Advisory services in the field of identification, distribution, status and ex situ conservation of plant species
  10. Dissemination of scientific information related to different aspect of Indian flora through hard copy publications of Floras, Journals and other thematic publications