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26th October 2021

S. No. Topic Name Prelims/Mains
1.    Food Crisis in Afghanistan Prelims & Mains
2.    About the WMO Report on CO2 emissions Prelims & Mains
3.    About the Mullaperiyar Dam Issue Prelims & Mains
4.    What is the Adjusted Gross Revenue Prelims & Mains
5.    About the Dadasaheb Phalke Award Prelims Specific
6.    About the Trignopterus Corona Prelims Specific


  1. Food Crisis in Afghanistan:


Topic – International Relations:

  • Why in the News:
  • The Executive Director of the World Food Program said Afghanistan was on the brink of the worst humanitarian crisis in the world as more than half the country was facing a shortage of
  • What is the problem:
  • The Taliban has taken full control of Afghanistan.
  • People are unemployed and have no money.
  • More than 22 million Afghan people will face food insecurity this winter as the drought caused by climate change adds to their problems.
  • This will force them to choose between migration and starvation.
  • Importance of Afghan stability:
  • The food crisis can spread to neighbouring countries in central Asia such as Tajikistan, Uzbekistan etc.
  • The re-emergence of the Taliban will rekindle extremism in the region and the region could be a safe haven for terrorist organizations like LeT, ISIS etc.
  • The civil war in Afghanistan will lead to refugee crisis in Central Asia and beyond.
  • Afghanistan’s instability will leave Central Asian countries with very short access to the Indian Ocean ports.
  • Afghanistan has become an important link in regional trade, playing the role of a bridge linking the Middle East and the rest of the world.
  • Why is it important now for India to hold talks with the Taliban:
  • The Taliban now has a significant presence in Afghanistan.
  • India already has a huge investment in Afghanistan.
  • To protect the $ 3 billion investment, India must liaise with all Afghan groups.
  • Taliban’s growing alliance with Pakistan will not be of interest of India.
  • The US has announced a new, surprising “Quad” formation on regional connections – U.S.-Uzbekistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan excluding India.
  • India’s attempt to trade with Afghanistan via the Chabahar port could also suffer.
  • Need of the hour:
  • There is an urgent need to work together to protect Afghan citizens in the face of Taliban violence
  • Afghanistan should be given more space in Central Asian associations such as SCO.
  • The USA, Iran, China, and Russia must actively involve India in maintaining stability in Afghanistan.
  • The Indian and Taliban cooperation should be enhanced to promote regional peace and stability.
  • Prelims Hot-Link:
  • About the Taliban.
  • Afghan Crisis.
  • About NATO.
  • India’s investment in Afghanistan projects.
  • Source – https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/afghans-facing-acute-food-crisis-united-nations/article37167604.ece
  1. About the WMO Report on CO2 emissions:


Topic – Conservation related issues:

  • Why in News:
  • The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) recently released a report on CO2 emissions.
  • Important findings:
  • The increase in CO2 from 2019 to 2020 was slightly lower than observed from 2018 to 2019 but higher than the average annual growth rate over the past decade.
  • This is despite a nearly 5.6% decline in CO2 emissions by 2020 due to the epidemic-related restrictions.
  • For methane, the increase from 2019 to 2020 was higher than what was seen from 2018 to 2019 and is higher than the average annual growth rate over the past decade.
  • For nitrous oxides, the increase was high and there was an average annual growth rate over the past 10 years.
  • The concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2), the most important greenhouse gas, reached 413.2 million by 2020 and is 149 percent pre-industrial level.
  • Methane (CH4) is 262% and nitrous oxide (N2O) is 123% of the 1750 levels when human activities begin to interfere with the earth’s ecological balance.
  • About half of the CO2 emitted by human activities today remains in the atmosphere.
  • The other half is taken by the oceans and the natural environment.
  • Concerns:
  • The ability of terrestrial and marine organisms to function as ‘sinks’ may not function properly in the future, thus reducing their ability to absorb CO2 and act as a barrier against global warming.
  • With the current rise in greenhouse gases, we will see a rise in temperature at the end of this century far exceeding the goals of the Paris Agreement of 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
  • About WMO:
  • The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) is a United Nations specialized body dedicated to issues related to meteorology, climatology, climate hydrology (water) and other related geophysical sciences such as oceanography and atmospheric chemistry.
  • Its predecessor Organization – International Meteorological Organization (IMO) – was founded in 1873.
  • Reports:
  • Greenhouse Gas Bulletin.
  • Earth’s Weather.
  • Source – https://public.wmo.int/en/media/press-release/greenhouse-gas-bulletin-another-year-another-record
  1. About the Mullaperiyar Dam Issue:


Topic – Water Conservation:

  • Why in News:
  • The Supreme Court has instructed the Steering Committee to take a swift and decisive decision regarding the high water level that can be maintained at the Mullaperiyar dam, amid heavy rains in Kerala.
  • Background:
  • The SC formed a permanent Steering Committee in 2014 to oversee all matters pertaining to the Mullaperiyar dam.
  • The dam is the source of the conflict between Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
  • What is the problem:
  • Kerala said the water should not be more than 139 meters, just as the court ordered on August 24, 2018, when the State was hit by floods.
  • This is because the lives of 50 lakh people could be in danger if the water level rises in the dam.
  • However, Tamil Nadu challenged the decision, citing 2006 and 2014 Supreme Court rulings, which adjusted the water level to 142 meters.
  • What’s next:
  • The court has asked officials in Kerala and Tamil Nadu to co-operate responsibly and avoid any conflict.
  • The Court also made it clear that this was not a political game.
  • Now, the steering committee will have to decide on the high water level and inform the court about it.
  • About the Mullaperiyar Dam:
  • Although the dam is located in Kerala, it is used by Tamil Nadu following a 1886 lease agreement for 999 years (Periyar Lake Lease Agreement) signed between the Maharaja of Travancore and the Indian Secretary of State for Periyar Irrigation operations.
  • Built between 1887 and 1895, the dam redirected the river to flow into the Bay of Bengal, replacing the Arabian Sea and supplying water to the arid rain of Madurai at the Presidential Palace in Madras.
  • The dam is located at the confluence of the Mullayar and Periyar rivers in the Idukki region of Kerala.
  • Prelims Hot-Link:
  • The Mullayar and Periyar River areas.
  • About the Periyar Lake Lease Agreement of 1886.
  • In terms of the Interstate River Water Disputes Act, 1956 (IRWD Act).
  • Source – https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/sc-directs-panel-to-specify-maximum-water-level-at-mullaperiyar-dam/article37159073.ece
  1. What is the Adjusted Gross Revenue:


Topic – Infrastructure related issues:

  • Why in News:
  • Bharti Airtel has decided to choose the four-year moratorium on gross revenue (AGR) and spectrum payments, making it the second telco after Vodafone Idea to accept the offer, which was part of a recently announced telecommunications package.
  • Background:
  • The Union Cabinet in September approved a number of measures to provide support to the telecom sector, including the suspension of four years of government debt payments based on AGR and the payment of spectrum purchased at past auctions.
  • The government had the asked mobile operators to decide on the four-year moratorium by October 29, while also giving a 90-day period to indicate whether they want to choose to convert interest-related interest rates into equity.
  • What is AGR:
  • Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) is an operating and licensing fee charged on telecommunications operators by the Department of Communications (DoT).
  • It is divided into spectrum usage costs and license fees, identified between 3-5 percent and 8 percent respectively.
  • According to DoT, tariffs are calculated based on all telco earnings – including non-telecom related sources such as deposit interest and sales of goods.
  • What was the help package:
  • The package includes a four-year suspension of payments required to be paid by telecommunications companies and allowing 100% FDI by automatic route.
  • A comprehensive set of proposed measures includes changes in the sick sector by issuing a moratorium on unpaid tariffs, redefining future Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) and reducing Spectrum Usage Charges.
  • Prelims Hot-Link:
  • What is AGR? How is it calculated?
  • What was the SC’s decision in this case?
  • Construction of TRAI?
  • How is spectrum distribution done in India
  • Source – https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/business/india-business/dot-exempts-non-telecom-revenue-for-calculating-levies-on-telcos/articleshow/87264091.cms
  1. About the Dadasaheb Phalke Award:

Prelims Specific Topic:

  • The Dadasaheb Phalke Award was presented by the government in 1969 and was awarded for the first time to Devika Rani, “the first lady of Indian cinema”.
  • Dadasaheb Phalke directed the first Indian film Raja Harischandra (1913).
  • He is known as the “Father of Indian Cinema”.
  • The 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award was recently presented by Rajinikanth.


  1. About the Trignopterus Corona:

Prelims Specific Topic:

  • On the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, museum scientists have identified 28 new species of beetles.
  • One of them is named Trigonpterus corona.
  • This shows the significant impact of the Covid-19 epidemic on this project.





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