Recently, a video of poaching of Critically Endangered Great Indian Bustards have surfaced fromPakistan’s Cholistan desert.
About Great Indian Bustards (GIB):
IUCN Red List
GIB is identified as one of the species for the recovery programme under the Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats, Ministry of Environment and Forests, and Climate Change
Project Great Indian Bustard — aims to identify and fence bustard breeding grounds both in and out of existing protected areas.
GIB is the state bird of Rajasthan.
Natural Habitat of GIB in India:
Only two districts in Rajasthan : Jaisalmer and Barmer — have a breeding GIB population in the wild.
The bird can also be found in very small numbers in states of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh.
Science and Technology
Why in News?
The GoI recently told the Bombay High Court that making FASTag mandatory for all vehicles plying on the national highways does not breach a citizen’s fundamental right to freedom of movement in any way.
A FASTag device employs Radio Frequency Identification or RFID technology for payments directly from the prepaid wallet or savings account linked to it.
It is affixed on the windscreen, to enable the vehicles to drive through toll plazas without stopping.
It is has unlimited validity, and can be recharged as and when required.
FASTag payment method is a part of the National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) programme.
The National Payments Corporation of India or NPCI collects the payments.
RFID uses radio waves to read and capture the information stored on the tag attached to any object.
A RFID enabled tag can be read from up to several feet away.
Also, it doesn’t need to be within direct line-of-sight of the reader to be tracked.
Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFC)
Why in News?
NBFCs have appealed to the finance ministry and MSME ministry to bring back the interest subvention scheme that allows 2% subvention on incremental loans to medium and small enterprises.
NBFCs are registered under the Companies Act, 1956.
It is engaged in the business of loans and advances, acquisition of shares/stocks/bonds/debentures/securities issued by GoI or state or local authority or other similar marketable securities.
NBFC does not include any institution whose principal business is that of agriculture, industrial nature, purchase or sale of any goods (other than securities) or providing any services and sale/purchase/construction of immovable property.
Features of NBFCs:
NBFCs cannot accept demand deposits;
NBFCs do not form part of the payment and settlement system and hence they cannot issue cheques drawn on itself.
Deposits made in an NBFC are not covered under Deposit insurance facility of Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation.
Why in News?
In poll campaigning in West Bengal,PM Kisan is repeatedly being invoked to target the state government since it was not implemented in the state.
About PM Kisan:
PM-KISAN is a Central Sector Schemee., has 100% funding from the Government of India.
Under Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare.
Under this scheme, the Centre transfers an amount of Rs 6,000 per year, in three equal instalments directly into the bank accounts (DBT) of beneficiaries.
Beneficiary: All the land holding farmers irrespective of the size of their land holdings (there are some exceptions to eligibility as well).
It intends to supplement farmers’ income and help in procuring various inputs to ensure proper crop health and appropriate yields.
The identification of beneficiary farmer families is done by the State / UT Governments.
Similar Income support schemes are also announced by several states like
Telangana’s Rythu Bandhu scheme,
Odisha’s Krushak Assistance forLivelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme
Financial Action Task Force
Why in News?
In its report to IMF, Pakistan has seeked more time to comply with steps that it has to take to exit the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)’s grey list, due to delays amid the pandemic and capacity constraints.
It is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 on the initiative of the G7
Headquarter: Paris, France (in OECD Headquarter)
India became member of FATF in 2010.
Combat Money Laundering
Combat terrorist financing
Combat threats to the integrity of international financial system.
The FATF Plenary is the highest decision-making body of the FATF. It meets three times per year.
Blacklist and Grey list:
Blacklist: Also knowns as Non-Cooperative Countries or Territories (NCCTs).
These countries were found to support terror funding and money laundering activities.
Blacklist is revised regularly, adding, or deleting entries.
Grey List: These countries were found to be safe haven for supporting terror funding and money laundering activities.
The inclusion here serves as a warning to the country that it may enter the blacklist.
Countries in the grey list may face:
Economic sanctions from IMF, World Bank, etc.
Problem in getting loans from IMF, World Bank, and other countries.
Reduction in international trade, etc.
News in Short
Diatoms are photosynthesizing algae found in almost every aquatic environment including fresh and marine waters, soils, etc.
This test is used to diagnoseif death of a person was by drowning or if the body was dead before being thrown in water body.
If the person is alive when he enters the water, the diatoms will enter the lungs when the person inhales water while drowning and it will be carried to various organs of body by circulation.
If the person is dead before being thrown in the water, then diatoms are not detected in body organs.