Preparations are underway for timely launch of NISAR in 2022 from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India.
NISAR is a dual frequency (L & S Band) Radar Imaging Satellite System.
It will be the first radar imaging satellite to use dual frequency.
It will be launched in the Sun Synchronous Low -Earth Orbit.
NISAR would provide information about a place more frequently, for e.g. it would revisit a particular spot and give the next round of info about it, in two to five days, unlike 20-25 days presently taken.
Estimation of soil moisture
Agriculture and forest biomass
Estimation of glacier
Snow and possibility of landslide
Other Applications: Observe and study of compelling issues like
ice-sheet collapse, and
natural hazards such as earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, and landslides.
Special Zero-Coupon Recapitalisation Bonds
Why in News?
The government is unlikely to use zero-coupon bonds to further recapitalise public sector banks after RBI expressed concerns in this regard.
About Special Zero-Coupon Recapitalisation Bonds:
These are special bonds issued by the GoI specifically to a particular institution.
It is reserved for use only by the specified bank, only for specified time.
It is non-tradable and non-transferable.
There is no coupon (interest), hence zero coupon.
The face value is repaid at the time of maturity of such zero-coupon bonds.
It is a Held-To-Maturity (HTM) category of bonds as per the RBI guidelines.
HTM securities are purchased to be owned till maturity.
These are a variation from recapitalisation-bonds, but serve the same purpose.
The issuance of these bonds will not affect the fiscal deficit and at the same time will provide much needed equity capital to the bank.
About Recapitalisation Bonds:
The government issues Recapitalisation bonds to be subscribed by the banks.
The money collected by the GoIgoes to the banks in form of equity capital thereby shoring up banks’ capital reserves.
The money is actually invested by the banks itself in recapitalisation bonds and these are classified as an investment which earns them an interest.
Thus, the government maintains its fiscal deficit target and no money directly goes out from its coffers.
Polity and Governance
Civil Services Board
Why in News?
The Supreme Court reiterated the fact that Government cannot transfer IAS officers without recommendations of the Civil Services Board.
About Civil Services Board:
Supreme Court in 2013 directed centre and states to set up Civil Services Board to-
Insulate bureaucracy from excessive political interference,
Put an end to frequent transfers of bureaucrats by their political bosses.
As per subsequent rules, all states were mandated to have a civil services board to decide on transfers and postings of the bureaucrats.
Decide on the transfer of a civil servant before completion of his or her fixed tenure.
TheBoard is mandated to submit an annual report to the GoI about the date of the meetings held by them.
The board is headed by chief secretary of the state.
Senior most additional chief secretary or chairman, Board of Revenue, Financial Commissioner or an officer of equivalent rank and status as member.
Principal Secretary or Secretary, Department of Personnel in the state government as member secretary.
Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT):
It is a statutory body established under Administrative Tribunals Act, 1985.
It derives powers from Article 323A of constitution. Thetribunals under Article 323A can be formed only through the Parliament and notby the State Legislatures.
CAT is mandated to adjudicate matters related to the recruitment and conditions of service of personnel engaged in public service in India.
Original jurisdiction over all service matters concerned with:
Members of the all-India services.
Persons appointed to any civil service of the Union or civil post under the Union.
Civilians appointed to any defence services or posts related to defence.
Employees of PSUs or public sector organizations were notified by the government.
NOTE: Members of the defence forces, officers, Supreme Court staff, the Parliament’s secretarial staff are not covered under the CAT.
The Tribunal is provided with the power to exercise the same jurisdiction and authority regarding contempt of itself as a High Court.
Appeals against the orders of CATcan be made in the High Court (and not the SC directly).
The CAT Principal Bench deals with matters of the Government of the NCT of Delhi.
In deciding cases, the Tribunal is guided by the principles of natural justice. It is not bound by the Civil Procedure Code.
The GoI decides the salaries, emoluments, and conditions of service of the Tribunal’s employees.
Places in News
Why in News?
There is a bilateral visit underway of external affairs minister to Tajikistan.
It is a is a landlocked country in Central Asia.
Afghanistan to the south,
Uzbekistan to the west,
Kyrgyzstan to the north,
China to the east.
News in Short
He was the commander in themilitary ofAhom kingdom.
He is remembered for his leadership in the 1671 Battle of Saraighat.
In the battle Ahoms thwarted a drawn-out attempt by Mughal forces to take over Ahom kingdom.
The battle was fought on the banks of the Brahmaputra in Guwahat
Shigmo is the celebration of rich and golden harvest of paddy by the tribal communities of Goa.
It is a vibrant celebration full of colour, song, dance rooted in theGoan culture and traditions.
Agricultural communities like the Kunbis, Gawdas and Velips celebrate it.