Prelims Revision – 3 (From July, 2018)

  1. BrahMos has a strike range of around 290 km and is described as the world’s fastest supersonic cruise missile. Brahmos, the world-class weapon with multi-platform, multi-mission role is capable of being launched from Land, Sea and Air. Brahmos is a joint venture between India and Russia. The missile has been jointly developed by India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Russia’s NPOM. The name Brahmos has been taken as a combination of the two rivers Brahmaputra and Moskva. Recently, BrahMos missile proved its all-weather capability, flying in sea state 7, with waves as high as nine metres. (Sea state is the degree of turbulence at sea, generally measured on a scale of 0 to 9 according to average wave height). Read more at The Hindu, The Indian Express and PIB.  
  2. WPI reflects the change in average prices for bulk sale of commodities at the first stage of transaction while Consumer Price Index reflects the average change in prices at retail level paid by the consumer. The prices used for compilation of WPI are collected at ex-factory level for manufactured products, at ex-mine level for mineral products and mandi level for agricultural products. In contrast, retail prices applicable to consumers and collected from various markets are used to compile CPI. The base year of All-India WPI has been revised from 2004-05 to 2011-12 on 12 May 2017 to align it with the base year of other macroeconomic indicators like the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and Index of Industrial Production (IIP). The current series is the seventh revision. Read more at Indian Economic Service.
  3. The Marshall Plan (April 3, 1948) (officially the European Recovery Program, ERP) was an American initiative to aid Western Europe, in which the United States gave over $13 billion (nearly $110 billion in 2016 US dollars) in economic assistance to help rebuild Western European economies after the end of World War II. The plan was in operation for four years beginning on April 3, 1948. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization, (4 April 1949) also called the North Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance between 29 North American and European countries. The alliance is based on the North Atlantic Treaty that was signed on 4 April 1949. The Warsaw Pact, formally known as the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance,was a collective defence treaty signed in Warsaw, Poland among the Soviet Union and seven Soviet satellite states of Central and Eastern Europe during the Cold War. The Warsaw Pact was created in 1955. The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) (1961) is a group of states that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. It was established in 1961 in Belgrade, Yugoslavia. Source: Wikipedia; Also read: The Hindu.
  4. The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) is a U.S. trade program designed to promote economic growth in the developing world by providing preferential duty-free entry for up to 4,800 products from 129 designated beneficiary countries and territories. Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Also read The Hindu.
  5. Under the Drugs & Cosmetics Rules, drugs specified under Schedule H (including Schedule H1) are required to be sold by retail on the prescription of a Registered Medical Practitioner only.Schedule H1 contains certain 3rd and 4th generation antibiotics, certain habit forming drugs and anti-TB drugs. These drugs are required to be sold in the country with the following conditions: (1) The supply of a drug specified in Schedule H1 shall be recorded in a separate register at the time of the supply giving the name and address of the prescriber, the name of the patient, the name of the drug and the quantity supplied and such records shall be maintained for three years and be open for inspection. (2) The drug specified in Schedule H1 shall be labelled with the symbol Rx which shall be in red and conspicuously displayed on the left top corner of the label, and shall also be labelled with the statutory warning. PIB. Also read The Hindu.
  6. Article 75 does not expressly provide for the provisions of no-confidence motions.  Rule 198 of the Rules of Procedure and conduct of Lok Sabha specifies the procedure for moving a no-confidence motion. No-confidence motion draws validity from Article 75 (3) which says: The Council of Ministers shall be collectively responsible to the House of the People. Thus, The Council of Ministers is collectively responsible to the House of the People (Lok Sabha) and therefore ‘no-confidence’ motions cannot be moved in the Rajya Sabha. Also read: The Indian Express and The Hindu.
  7. As per the 2011 Census, there are about 122 languages spoken by more than 10,000 people. Of them 22 are the scheduled languages. Other than the 122 languages, the survey has come up with languages that are spoken by less than 10,000 people many from tribal areas, nomadic communities and from the interiors of north-eastern part of the country. Read The Hindu. Mother tongues having a population of less than 10000 on all India basis or not possible to identify on the basis of available linguistic information go under ‘others’ section of the census. Also read MHRD.
  8. The U.S.-Soviet Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, known as START I, was signed 31 July 1991 by U.S. President George H.W. Bush and Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev. Read more at Encyclopedia Britannica.
  9. Defence Technology and Trade Initiative (DTTI) was initiated as a part of lndo-US Bilateral Defence Cooperation. The aim of DTTI is to bring sustained leadership focus to the bilateral defence trade relationship and create opportunities for co-production and co-development of defence equipment. The DTTI was initiated as an idea by former US Secretary of Defence Dr Ashton Carter in 2012. Read more at PIB.
  10. With only 5 per cent of the world’s population, Eastern and Southern Africa is home to half the world’s population living with HIV. Today the region continues to be the epicentre of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, with 48 per cent of the world’s new HIV infections among adults, 55 per cent among children, and 48 per cent of AIDS-related deaths – UNICEF. Despite more than three decades of research, there is no cure or vaccine and HIV-positive people have to take lifelong treatment that can be expensive and have nasty side-effects. Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) inhibits the virus and can limit its spread between people — mainly through sex — but does not kill it. By 2020, 90% of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status. By 2020, 90% of all people with diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy. By 2020, 90% of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression. Read more at The Hindu.