- 3 years on, Centre’s coastal tourism plan for Karnataka yet to take off
- More than three years after the Union tourism ministry sanctioned Rs 95.7 crore for developing Karnataka’s coastal tourism circuit, work is yet to begin, say sources in the state tourism department.
- Detailed project report (DPR) for the circuit — to be developed under the Swadesh Darshan scheme — had to be truncated several times to eliminate a few ‘non-feasible’ projects like water sports equipment at beaches with rocky terrain and floating restaurant cruises, for which almost Rs 22 crore had been earmarked, said officials.
- The tourism ministry launched the Swadesh Darshan scheme for integrated development of theme-based tourist circuits in the country in 2014-15. Nearly Rs 810 crore has been sanctioned for 11 coastal circuits in Andhra Pradesh, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Odisha, Goa and West Bengal.
- According to officials, since the coastal tourism circuit never took off, the ambitious Deccan Heritage circuit in Karnataka which was planned at a cost of Rs 147 crore also got delayed.
- WHO raises alarm over 300% increase in case of measles globally
- World Health Organization (WHO)raised alarm over a 300 per cent increase in the case of measles globally in the first quarter of 2019 compared with last year.
The UN body agreed the provisional data indicated a clear trend, with all regions of the world seeing outbreaks.
- The WHO had an early trend for 2019 likely underestimated the severity of the outbreaks since only about one in 10 actual measles cases was reported.
Around 170 countries have reported 112,163 measles cases to WHO.
Africa has witnessed the most dramatic rise – up 700% which has weaker vaccination coverage than other regions.
At this time in 2018, 163 countries had reported 28,124 cases.
- China makes world’s 1st armored amphibious drone boat
- China has successfully tested the world’s first armed amphibious drone boat.
- It is capable of forming a combat triad with aerial drones and other drone ships.
- Built by Wuchang Shipbuilding Industry Group under China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation, the drone ship is named asMarine Lizard.
- Having a maximum operation range of 1,200 kms, the Marine Lizard can be remotely controlled via satellites.
- Different harvest festivals being celebrated in several parts of the country
- The list of the various new year and harvest festivals with their associated states is as follows:
Rongali Bihu: Assam
Puthandu Pirappu: Tamil Nadu
Poila Baisakh: West Bengal
Maha Vishuba Sankranti: Odisha
- CMFRI joins hands with ISRO to protect coastal wetlands
- The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) have joined hands to map, validate and protect smaller wetlands in the coastal belt of the country.
- A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the CMFRI and the Space Applications Centre (SAC) of the ISRO to develop a mobile app and a centralised web portal with a complete database of wetlands smaller than 2.25 hectares in the country.
- As per the MoU, the two scientific institutes will identify and demarcate wetlands, and restore the degraded wetlands through suitable livelihood options like coastal aquaculture.
- Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) Headquarters at Kochi.
- India turns to net steel importer in Fiscal year 2018-2019
- India became a net importer of steel in the fiscal year 2018-2019 that ended on 31 March for the first time in 3 years, as the 25% import duty on steel products imposed by the US diverted supplementary supplies to India.
India’s steel imports increased by 4.7% to 7.84 million tonnes in 2018-19 from 7.48 million tonnes a year earlier.
- Exports fell by 34% to 6.36 million tonnes from 9.62 million tonnes over.
- The iron and steel industry is one of the most important industries in India.
During 2014 through 2016, India was the third largest producer of raw steel and the largest producer of sponge iron in the world.
- The industry produced 91.46 million tons of total finished steel and 9.7 million tons of raw iron. Most iron and steel in India is produced from iron ore.
- Health Ministry to frame law to ban manufacture and sale of e cigarettes
- The Ministry of Commerceand Industries instructed the Health Ministry to frame law banning manufacture and sale of e-cigarettes in the country as in the absence of the domestic legislation, it would not be possible to put a blanket ban on its imports.
- The Commerce Ministry stated that without banning domestic sale and manufacturing of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS)through the law, it will be an infringement of global trade norms to put an import ban.
- Electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes are devices that do not burn or use tobacco leaves but insteadvaporise a solution, which a user then inhales
- The main constituents of the solution, in addition to nicotine, arepropylene glycol
As per the World Health Organization report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic 2017, governments of 30 countries which includes Mauritius, Australia, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Brazil, Mexico, Uruguay, Bahrain, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, have already banned the Electronic cigarettes.
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