Sunday, November 4, 2012 - , , , , , , 0 comments

Bio-toilets / ELOO / Bio-digester / Bapu Toilets

Recently, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has launched its Bio-digester, christened as bio-toilets from Dhamara (Odisha) near the Wheeler Island test facility from where it used to test launch long-range missiles like Agni and AAD interceptors.
The Bio-digester, named as ELOO (eco-friendly loo) is said to be the perfect alternative to the current ‘Flush and forget’ toilets. It is expected that bio-toilets can save billions of dollars for any government in waste management and to ensure good health for all.
  •  It degrades and converts the human waste into usable water and gasses in an eco-friendly manner. The generated gas can be utilized for energy/cooking and water for irrigation purposes.
  • The process involves the bacteria, which feed upon the faecal matter inside the tank, through anaerobic process which finally degrades the matter and releases methane gas that can be used for cooking, along with the treated water.

Saving The Tiger


Env. & Forests


The country level tiger population, estimated once in every four years using the refined methodology, has shown an increasing trend with a population estimate of 1706, lower and upper limits being 1520 and 1909 respectively in the recent all India estimation (2010), as compared to the last country level estimation of 2006, with an estimate of 1411, lower and upper limits being 1165 and 1657 respectively.


Project Arrow



Project Arrow is an initiative to transform India Post into a vibrant and responsive organization and to make a visible and positive difference in postal operations to benefit the customers.  It has been launched with objective of modernizing the post and makes visible, tangible and noteworthy differences in the post office operations that matter to “Aam Aadmi”.

FDI in Multi-Brand Retail: Advantage All



Amit Guin*

The Government of India opened the floodgates for foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail trading, on September 14, 2012; thereby boosting the investors’ confidence towards the Indian market and economy. The government, thus, decided to give green signal to FDI up to 51 per cent, under the government route, in multi-brand retail trading. It was clearly stated that at least 50 per cent of the total FDI shall be invested in backend infrastructure within three years of the first tranche of FDI. The government also specifically mentioned that at least 30 per cent of the procurement of manufactured or processed products shall be directed from ‘small industries’ which have a total investment in plant and machinery, not exceeding USD 1 million. The government also allayed the state’s fears by clarifying that it is an enabling policy, therefore, leaving it up to the states to take their own decisions with regard to allowing FDI in multi-brand retail trading in those states.

Auto Industry – India in Changing World Order


  Heavy Industry


            Change is the only universal constant.  This is also quite evident in the global automotive industry and can be seen with regards to the products, consumer choice, markets, technology and the competitive paradigms that govern this sector.  The changing world order in the automotive space can be categorized around a few important broad themes – “emergence of new markets and opportunities”, “enhanced concerns over sustainable growth”, “the competitive paradigms of the future”.


Antarchakshu: an Initiative to Open the Eyes of the Sighted to the World of Visually Challenged



Sarita Brara*

      “I have learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel” said poet Maya Angellou.
       And this is what Antarchakshu seeks to do through a programme aimed at sensitizing the general public as well policy makers about the issues related to the mainstreaming of the visually challenged.  In a novel initiative Antarakshu seeks to engages people from all walks of life in different activities and tasks blindfolded for about half an hour to open the eyes of the sighted to the world of the visually challenged. The aim of this awareness programme is to remove the prejudices, myths and misconceptions about the capabilities of the visually challenged with or without technical aides in the areas of education and employment and financial transactions and give them firsthand experience of the challenges that confront the visually handicapped

Faster than the Speed of Sound


He is about as close as it gets for humans to being a batman or a superman.  He has jumped off the Petronas Tower in Kuala Lumpur and even flown across the English Channel, with the help of carbon fibre wings. Meet Fearless Felix – the Austrian sky-diver, who has just set a world record to become the first man to break the sound barrier.

Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram



B.  Narzary*

Reducing the maternal and infant mortality rate is the key goal feature of the Reproductive and Child Health Programme under the National Rural Health Mission. Several initiatives have been launched by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare under the Mission including Janani Suraksha Yojana, a key intervention that has resulted in phenomenal growth in institutional deliveries with more than one crore women beneficiaries annually. JSY was launched to promote institutional deliveries so that skilled attendance at birth is made available and mothers and new born babies can be saved from pregnancy related complications and deaths.

Is Indian Economy Turning Around?



Ashok Handoo*

For a few months now, the Indian economy appears to be on a recovery path. At least there are enough indications to that. Foremost is the performance of various sectors of the economy.

           Industrial output has been gathering some pace since August. It rose by 2.7 % in August this year compared to a fall of 0.2 % in July. But the hike has been less if we compare it with August last year when it stood at 3.4%. The manufacturing sector grew 2.9% in August but again less than 3.9 % growth it recorded in the same month last year. The mining sector recorded an increase by 2.9% in August when it actually declined by 5.5 % in the same month last year. The growth recorded by the manufacturing sector is significant since it accounts for about 76 % of the index of industrial production.


(Download) UPSC: IAS Mains 2012 Question Papers


Download UPSC Mains 2012
Question Papers

Question Papers

General Studies


Optional Subjects

Courtesy: UPSC

Source : UPSC Portal


MY ARTICLES: AN ARTICLE ON CONTEMPORARY POLITICS AND ROBERT VAD...:                      कुंवर फंस गए भंवर में !                         एक प्रतिष्ठित जागीरदार अपने संस्मरण में लिखते हैं , स्वतंत्रता क...

Highlights of the Report - Children in India 2012

Highlights of the Report
‘Children in India 2012 - A Statistical Appraisal’ 

• While an absolute increase of 181 million in the country’s  population has been 
recorded during the decade 2001-2011, there is a reduction of 5.05 millions in the 
population of children aged 0-6 years during this period. The decline in male 
children is 2.06 million and in female children is 2.99 millions. 

• The share of Children (0-6 years) in the total population has showed a decline of 2.8 
points in 2011, compared to Census 2001 and the decline was sharper for female 
children than male children in the age group 0-6 years. 

National Policy on Electronics 2012

The Union Cabinet today approved the National Policy on Electronics 2012. The draft National Policy on Electronics was released for public consultation and it has now been finalized based on comments from various stakeholders.

Mains answer writing format

60 marks: 600 – 700 words
40 marks: 400 – 450 words
30 marks: 300 – 330 words
20 marks: 200 – 220 words
15 marks: 150 – 170 words
10 marks: 100 – 110 words

Required writing speed 22 words/minute

50 words – Basic concept (explain)
50 words – Causes of origin (background)
300 words – Body (in detail)
150 words – Evaluation, Comparison, Contrast, Criticism, suggestion
50 words – Balanced Conclusion (Depending upon the demand of the Question)

40 words – Basic concept (explain)
20 words – Causes of origin (background)
200 words – Central theme (in detail)
100 words – Evaluation, Comparison, Contrast, Criticism, Suggestion
40 words – Balanced Conclusion

25 words – Basic concept (briefly)
25 words – Causes of origin (background)
150 words – Central theme (in detail)
75 words – Evaluation, Comparison, Contrast, Criticism, Suggestion
25 words – Balanced Conclusion

20 words – Basic concept (briefly)
100 words – Central theme (in detail)
60 words – Evaluation, Comparison, Contrast, Criticism, Suggestion
20 words – Balanced Conclusion

80 words – Central theme
50 words – Evaluation, Comparison, Contrast, Criticism, Suggestion
20 words – Balanced Conclusion

60 words – Central theme
30 words – Evaluation, Comparison, Contrast, Criticism, Suggestion
10 words – Balanced Conclusion

courtesy:- sharp ias

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel wins Indian Grand Prix 2012

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel won Indian Grand Prix 2012 title. Fernando Alonso managed to get the Second place and Mark Webber got the Third Place. By winning this title, mr Vettel made his four consecutive wins for the first time in a season in his Formula One career to strengthen his grip on securing a third successive world title. Vettel led the Indian Grand Prix from lights to chequered flag to open up a 13-point lead over Fernando Alonso with three races remaining as the Ferrari star was forced to settle for second, albeit his best finish since a win in Germany in July. Not since Jenson Button in 2009 has a driver chalked up four wins in a row, with Vettel's run to the championship finish line seemingly perfectly timed.

Harika Dungala


List of new Cabinet Ministers of India after Reshuffle - Guide 4 Bank Exams

Indian Cabinet has been changed on October 28, 2012. In this mega reshuffle, 22 Ministers, including seven of Cabinet rank, were inducted into the Manmohan Singh government in what is seen as the last such exercise by UPA-II before the 2014 general elections.

Here is the Complete List of Cabinet ministers after the reshuffle :


Jal Satyagraha: Public Power

Oustees of the Omkareshwar Dam project called off their jal satyagraha after the Madhya Pradesh government accepted all their demands and constituted a ministerial committee to look into their grievances. On the 17th day of the protest, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan announced that the government had agreed to the key demands of the agitators — reducing the water level of the dam to 189 meters and providing land for land compensation to all those who had lost their land. “Compliance with the order given by the Grievances Redressal Authority about giving land for land to farmers surrendering 50 per cent [of their financial] compensation will be ensured within 90 days,” Mr. Chauhan said, after holding a “direct dialogue” with the affected farmers of Ghoghalgaon, Kewla Buzurg, Aikhand and Kamankhera at his residence. “A highlevel committee will hear problems of the dam-affected people,” he said.
On September 10 the Madhya Pradesh Government partially accepted the demands of the ‘Jal Satyagraha’ in Khandwa district. Accordingly the water-level of Onkareshwar dam was almost immediately reduced to the legal limit so that the illegal and premature submergence of several villages was undone. The government has promised that land in place of land will be provided to the displaced people. However till the time of writing on September 11, the Jal Satyagraha in Harda district (Indirasagar or Narmadasagar dam oustees) was still continuing.
Even in Khandwa (Onkareshwar dam) the government has also stipulated a condition that a significant part of the cash compensation will have to be returned by any family before it can receive land. This condition ignores how much damage and distress people have suffered due to the illegal and premature submergence of their land as well as the delay in providing land to them for such a long time. Initially why did the government insist on providing only cash ignoring court orders? How much loss was caused to people by this illegal action of government? Keeping in view the enormous distress already suffered by the people, the government should waive the condition of first returning a signifi-cant part of the cash compensation received earlier by several families before they can get their land. Already the government has faced widespread criticism for its insensitivity in ignoring the legal demands of people facing displacement. Now the government can at least partially make up for this by showing a lot of generosity.
Secondly, beyond the immediate issue faced by the oustees of Onkareshwar and Narmada-sagar projects who were involved in the Jal Satyagraha, the much wider issues of all people affected adversely by the various dams on the Narmada river and its tributaries should be taken up. There is a lot of evidence, such as that gathered recently by the Jan Satyagraha Sanvad Yatras or the various presentations made by the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA), that the lives of lakhs of people have been adversely affected by dam projects like Sardar Sarovar, Bargi, Tawa and Narmagasagar (Indirasagar).
“We have agreed to bring down the water level of dam to 189 metres and to compensate the farmers’ land. It will, however, affect irrigation in 20,000 hectares of land and generation of 120 megawatts electricity,” said Chauhan. “The Supreme Court had given the go ahead to increase the water level to 196.5 metres, but we have reduced it for the time bring,” he added. The Madhya Pradesh government has also formed a three-member ministerial panel to look into the matter. Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh earlier today lashed out at the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP government in the state over not been able to finalize the rehabilitation and provide relief to the villagers.
“I think the state government is responsible to solve this issue. And there are two three things involved. Number one at what level the rehabilitation and resettlement has taken place. Number two if the rehabilitation, resettlement has not taken place at a level where the water is at just now, I think the government should immediately finalize the rehabilitation and provide relief to the land oustees,” Singh told  mediapersons in New Delhi. “Number three is the issue: what is the full reservoir level, if the full reservoir level has been reached then they should try to reduce the levels by opening the gates and they will be generating power through that,” he said. “So, it is a very complex issue, but the foremost is the misery which these villages have been subjected to and this should be settled as soon as possible,” he added. The Jal Satyagraha, under the aegis of Narmada Bachao Andolan, was launched to demand proper rehabilitation and reduction in the water level of dam at Indira Sagar Project on river Narmada. Most discussion takes place only on directly displaced people, but actually several categories of people are adversely affected. For example, the Report of the Independent Review (also known as the Morse Committee Report), prepared in the context of the Sardar Sarovar Project, had identified several categories of people who are likely to adversely affected:
  1. People living in the submergence zone numbering about a hundred thousand.
  2. People whose land will be fully or partially claimed by the extensive canal network, numbering about 140 thousand.
  3. People who will be isolated in tapu (island like settlements) after the submergence.
  4. Certain sections of people living in upstream areas, specially those likely to be affected by backwater floods.
  5. People of Kevadia Colony.
  6. Certain sections of people living in downstream areas such as those dependent on fisheries.
  7. At least some people even in the beneficiary areas, specially those whose land may have to bear the impact of waterlogging.
  8. Indirectly affected people such as those living in sanctuary area or in the areas that will have the resettled people in future.
Among these various sections of people, the official rehabilitation programme is concerned almost entirely with the first category, and here too, a large number of people may be left out as the rights of the socalled ‘encroachers’ (that is, those peasants, specially tribals, whose rights to the land cultivated by them are not properly defined) are not recorded. Even for those who get recognised as project evictees, the overall record on the whole is quite dismal so that even in the case of the majority of them there is likely to be a deterioration in living and working conditions.
With that assurance, the 51 oustees standing in waist to neckdeep water for the last 16 days broke their jal satyagraha amid an atmosphere of victory. The Chief Minister said sincere efforts would be made to find a solution to the problems of the affected farmers. The high-level committee would comprise Commerce and Industries Minister Kailash Vijaywargiya, SC-ST Welfare Minister Kunwar Vijay Shah, Minister of State for Narmada Valley Development K.L. Agrawal, Principal Secretary, Narmada Valley Development, Rajneesh Vaish and the Indore Divisional Commissioner. The oustees thanked the media and supporters from across the country and abroad who had helped their cause. “The protesters endured a lot during these 17 days and suffered a lot of damage to their bodies by standing constantly under water. However, their displaced brethren from the Indira Sagar project continued their jal satyagraha (in Khardana and Badhkhalia villages) against the State’s decision to raise the water level beyond 260 metres, which, they claim, is in contravention of Supreme Court orders.
Thus the overall conclusion is that a very small part of the affected people get recognised for the purpose of rehabilitation or even compensation, and even regarding those who are recognised many of  them generally do not have access to satisfactory rehabilitation. This has been a main concern of the NBA and this has been fully supported in RIR. There is now a clear need for a close look at the plight in which all categories of people adversely affected by the various Narmada dams find themselves today, so that their genuine demands can be taken up in a more organised way.                                                                                                   Md. Israr

Source : upsc portal


Civil Services Mentor Magazine November-2012

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  • Nirmal Bharat Yatra
  • Jal Satyagraha: Public Power
  • FDI in Retail: Back to Economic Reform
  • Intellectual Property Rights
  • Who should control the water resources?
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Proposed DNA Profiling Bill, 2012

(From IAS OUR DREAM blog)

The UPA Government is coming with the DNA Profiling BIll this winter session ,,,letzz hav a look at what this bill will b like  ..!!!!
The bill has been in the offing since 2007. 
What does the proposed bill provide for ?
  • Once it becomes a law, the bill will grant the authority to collect vast amount of sensitive DNA data of citizens even if they are "suspects" in a criminal caseThe data will be held till the person is cleared by court.
  • The bill proposes the creation of a national DNA data bank that will be manned by a manager of the rank of a joint secretary to the government of India. For activists, this will help the government assume the role of an alarming "Big Brother" collecting vast amount of sensitive data of citizens.
  • The data, the bill states, will also be used for the "creation andmaintenance" of population statistics and can be used for "identification, research, protocol development or quality control".

Punishment in case of misuse of this  ???
Strangely enough, the penalty for "misuse" of the DNA profiles attracts a mild imprisonment of a few months or a fine of a paltry Rs50,000. .

People protesting against it raise issue regarding ?
  • The bill has already raised the hackles of many groups working on privacy issues who are worried that if it becomes a law, it would empower the government to create intrusive databases.
  • While activists are concerned about privacy issues and fear that the database could be used by new intrusive tools like the Unique Identification Number and NATGRID, police officials feel the tool will be critical for investigations.
Some Dilemmas regarding ?
The government has also slipped in a section that allows for "volunteers" to give their DNA profiles which will be maintained. It is not clear under what circumstances the "volunteers" will share their sensitive data with the government.

Experience in other nations (UK)?
In fact, law enforcement agencies like the CBI have been pushing the government for an early enactment of the bill. They have cited the findings of a UK parliamentary report issued by its Office of Science and Technology in February 2006 that states that convictions in criminal cases went up drastically after the government agreed to maintain DNA profiling data in perpetuity. The report records that the detection of crime in the UK went up from 26% to a healthy 40% after DNA samples were loaded in the national DNA database.
However, since this kind of a database usually co-exists with crime statistics, there is a fear that members of minority communities could be easily targeted. This is a concern that has also been raised in the British parliamentary report which says that "blacks and ethnic minorities are disproportionately represented" in their database because more ofthem are arrested for alleged crimes. Currently, the present bill does address these concerns of the inherent imbalance in racial profiling when maintaining a national DNA database.
Why are police officials unhappy with this Bill ?
Meanwhile, senior police officials who are familiar with the bill and have made extensive presentations to the DBT are upset that the bill makes a provision for deleting the DNA profile data after a person has been acquitted by courts.They feel that maintaining the data and increasing it slowly and steadily will go a long way in preventing and solving crimes. 

While that is a legitimate argument, the absence of a strong privacy law raises concerns about the intrusive nature of theproposed DNA Profiling Bill.

Source : IAS Our Dream