17.12.20 APPSC current Affairs


Eco-tourism push to attract nature lovers to Andhra Pradesh


The Andhra Pradesh tourism department will be putting special focus on developing nature and eco-tourism. In Visakhpatnam district as well as across the state, trekking and cycling trails will be created alongside other capacity-building activities. The initiative will also include setting up of nature camps and starting wildlife safaris.
As per the draft policy, eco-tourism in the state will be developed through creation of experiences which have low-impact on environment, have high-involvement of tourists and benefits for local communities. The tourism department will closely work with the forestry department to create a state-level body for development of eco-tourism. Forest regions of SV national park, Papikondalu Wildlife Sanctuary, Nallamala Wildlife Sanctuary and Araku Valley in the Eastern Ghats will be the focus areas.


Since Andhr Pradesh has a tiger reserve, elephant reserve, a biosphere reserve, three national parks and 13 wildlife sanctuaries, safe jungle trails would be created for wildlife safaris. The department of tourism will encourage local entrepreneurship and private players to operate the jungle safaris after they register with the competent authority and operate under their guidelines.

Further, the department of tourism will also identify and notify suitable locations for setting up of temporary or tented accommodation for nature camps in collaboration with private players. The private partners may offer services and activities such as trekking and kayaking at nature camps after obtaining the requisite permissions.



India ranks 131 in UN’s human development index

India dropped one spot to 131 among 189 countries in the 2020 human development index, according to a report released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Human Development Index is the measure of a nation’s health, education, and standards of living.


India had ranked 130 in 2018 in the inde


Norway has topped the index with a score of 0.957, followed by Ireland, Switzerland, Hong Kong and Iceland.


Niger is the lowest ranked country at 189, placed among Low human development category, with a score of 0.394

GoI, World Bank sign 400 million dollar project to protect India’s poor from COVID-19

The Government of India and the World Bank have signed a 400 million dollar project to protect India’s poor and vulnerable from the impact of COVID-19.

This is the second operation in a programmatic series of two.


The first operation of 750 million dollar was approved in May 2020.


The programme will strengthen the capability of state and central governments to provide coordinated and adequate social protection to the poor and vulnerable from the shocks triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.


India and Bangladesh to reopen Chilahati-Haldibari rail link after nearly 55 years

India and Bangladesh will reopen the Chilahati-Haldibari rail link after nearly 55 years.

It was cut off during the 1965 India-Pakistan war.


The Haldibari-Chilahati rail link was part of the Broad Gauge main route from Kolkata to Siliguri.


To revive the ease of access on both sides, the rail links are being restored, enhancing connectivity and people-to-people ties on both sides.


With the inauguration of the Haldibari-Chilahati rail link, five out of six rail links will become operational.


The other four operational rail links between India and Bangladesh are Petrapole-Benapole, Gede-Darshana, Singhabad-Rohanpur and Radhikapur-Birol.


ISRO sets up dedicated control centre ‘NETRA’ for Space Situational Awareness


The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has set up a dedicated Space Situational Awareness (SSA) Control Centre, at its ISTRAC campus, Bangalore.

The ISRO SSA Control Centre ‘NETRA’ was formally inaugurated by ISRO Chairman K Sivan.


SSA is the science of tracking objects (man-made and natural) that are in orbit and also predicting where they would be at a given point in time.


Only the US, Russia and Europe have similar facility in place to track space objects and share collision warnings.


The “NEtwork for space object TRacking and Analysis (NETRA)” will monitor, track and protect India’s space assets.

ISRO launches communication satellite CMS-01 from Sriharikota


The national space agency ISRO launched India’s communication satellite CMS-01 using the rocket PSLV-C50.

The launch took place from the second launch pad of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.


For the PSLV rocket, this was the 52nd flight and for the national space agency ISRO, this would be the 77th launch mission from home.


PSLV injected the nation’s new communication satellite CMS-01 into the geosynchronous transfer orbit.


The satellite CMS-01 will have transponders to provide service using the Extended-C Band.


This will be useful in covering not only mainland India but also its far-flung island territories of Andaman and Nicobar and the Lakshadweep for communication purposes.

Cabinet clears Rs 3500 crore sugar export subsidy


The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved a Rs 3,500 crore subsidy to export sugar.

A farmer-friendly move through which India is set to offer sugar export subsidies for a third year in a row to pare surplus stocks and ensure domestic prices don’t crash.


Cabinet has taken the decision to help farmers directly by depositing money or subsidies into their accounts.


The subsidy will be given on 60 lakh tonnes of sugar exports at the rate of Rs 6,000 per tonne.


Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Karnataka are among the three largest cane-producing states.


India is the world’s largest sugar consumer, but 90% of the country’s output goes into commercial food products while 10% is bought by household consumers.

India International Science Festival (IISF) 2020 to be organized from 22 December


India International Science Festival (IISF) 2020 is going to be organized from 22 December on virtual platforms.

This will be the largest science festival to be held on a virtual platform.


The central theme of this year’s festival is “Science for Self-reliant India and Global Welfare”.


The festival begins on 22nd December, the birthday of Srinivas Ramanujam, the world renowned Indian mathematician and culminates on 25th December.


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