In-depth Current Affairs

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What are Bitcoins? Bitcoin is a virtual currency. It is not regulated by any any government or a financial regulator agency. It is generated by a complex computer algorithm. The currency is “created” when computers solve complex mathematical problems. People owning this digital currency can use it for some (definitely not the...

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The context On October 9, 2013, the Patna High Court acquitted all the 26 persons convicted by a lower court in the 1997 Laxmanpur Bathe case of massacre of 58 Dalits. The HC judges found the prosecution witnesses not reliable and gave the benefit of doubt to all the 26 convicts....

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India recently withstood the fury of cyclone Phailin in eastern coastal regions of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh indicating better disaster preparedness as a similarly deadly cyclone had killed 10,000 people 14 years ago in 1999. Cyclone Phailin, the worst cyclone to hit the eastern coast of India in 14 years, had its...

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What is a tropical cyclone? A tropical cyclone is a storm system characterised by a low-pressure centre, which produces strong winds and flooding rain. A tropical cyclone feeds on heat released by the condensation of moist air. The latent heat gets converted into kinetic energy and feeds the strong winds emerging...

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Mars Orbiter Mission The Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), informally called Mangalyaan, is a planned Mars orbiter to be launched in October 2013 by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). This will be India's first mission to Mars.  If successful, ISRO would become the fourth space agency to reach Mars, after Roscosmos, NASA,...

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Amendments to the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 The Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry has recently notified certain amendments to the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940. As a result of these, antibiotics and anti-tuberculosis drugs will not be sold over the counter from March 1, 2014. The Government’s move is expected...

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The main findings and suggestions of the Raghuram Rajan panel on backwardness of Indian states A six-member expert committee constituted by the Centre on fixing a new criterion for determining the backwardness of Indian states recently gave its report, claiming Odisha, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh are the least developed states in...

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Summary for Policymakers: The first part of IPCC Fifth Assessment Report on Climate Change Recently, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released the Summary for Policymakers, the first part of its Fifth Assessment Report. The Fourth Assessment Report was released in 2007. This report has concluded that there is more...

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The SC Ruling In a landmark judgment for India’s democracy, the Supreme Court on September 27, 2013 empowered citizens to cast a negative vote to convey to political parties that none of the candidates in the fray in an election is worthy of their vote. In its order, the court directed the...

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The revelations about PRISM targeting India too Recently, certain prominent sections of the Indian media reported that the U.S.’s National Security Agency (NSA) and the American surveillance programmes such as PRISM targeted India too, among many other countries. It is noteworthy that taking serious offence to such a practice and terming...

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The recent elections in Northern Province Recently, along with the Northern Province Sri Lanka’s Central and North Western provinces went through poll on September 21, 2013. The attention, however, was on the Northern Province as it was witnessing its first ever provincial council election. The Northern Province is one of the nine...

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A suicide bomb strike outside a Peshawar church Recently the All Saints Church in Peshawar, Pakistan was target of a deadly terrorist attack where at least 600 people were present for the Sunday prayers. The attack executed by suicide bombers killed 78 people, 34 of them women, apart from injuring over...

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The Supreme Court ruling on Aadhar cards Recently in a verdict of far reaching consequences the Supreme Court ruled that the Centre or states must not insist on Aadhar cards for providing essential services. The Court added that no citizen should suffer for the want of Aadhar cards. The...

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The German Federal Election for the 18th Bundestag The German Federal Election took place on 22 September 2013, and determined the 630 members of the 18th Bundestag, the main Federal Legislative House of Germany. The Christian Democratic Union / Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU) of Chancellor Angela Merkel won their best result since...