Current Affairs 10th June 2023 for UPSC Prelims Exam
Context: A meeting of the Cauvery Water Management Authority is set to take place in New Delhi.
About Cauvery River:
- Cauvery is the third largest river of southern India. In ancient Sangam Literature, the river was also called Ponni.
- The Cauvery basin spreads across the states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry. It is one of the seven holy rivers of India.
- Course: Cauvery river originates from Talacauvery, which is located on Brahmagiri hills in Kodagu district of Karnataka. It flows into the Bay of Bengal in Poompuhar, in Mayiladuthurai district of Tamil Nadu.
- Tributaries: Major tributaries include Harangi, Hemavati, Kabini, Bhavani, Lakshmana Tirtha, Noyyal, and Arkavati.
- Famous features: Shivanasamudra waterfalls, Hogenkal waterfalls, Mekedatu gorge, KRS dam, Mettur dam, Srirangapatna and Srirangam islands.
- The Ranganthittu Bird Sancturay, a Ramsar site, is present on the Cauvery River.
- There is a dispute between the states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu on the issue of sharing of Cauvery River water.
- The Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT) was formed in 1990, to adjudicate the water dispute between the states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, along with Kerala and Puducherry.
- The project envisions a reservoir near Ontigondlu, about 1.5 km from Mekedatu in Ramanagara district of south Karnataka at the confluence of the Cauvery and Arkavathi rivers.
- The reservoir project aims to provide supply of 4.75 TMCF water to Bengaluru and its surrounding areas, besides generating 400 megawatts of hydroelectric power.
TAPI Gas Pipeline Project
Context: Recently, Pakistan and Turkmenistan signed a joint implementation plan to execute the multibillion-dollar Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project.
About TAPI gas pipeline project
- TAPI project includes Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.
- It aims to bring natural gas from the Galkynysh gas field in Turkmenistan to India through Afghanistan and Pakistan.
- The project is being developed by a consortium established by four individual state-owned gas companies Turkmengaz (Turkmenistan), Afghan Gas (Afghanistan), Interstate Gas Service (Pakistan), and Gas Authority of India and Indian Oil (India).
- The four countries signed an Inter Government Agreement (IGA) and Gas Pipeline Framework Agreements (GPFA) in December 2010 for the development of the pipeline.
- The construction work began in 2015 but made little progress due to instability in Afghanistan.
Significance of Pipeline
- It is expected to facilitate a unique level of trade and co-operation across the region, while also supporting peace and security between the four nations.
- More than 1.5 billion people in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India are expected to benefit from the long-term energy security provided by the project.
- It is expected to boost the revenues of Turkmenistan via the sale of gas.
- Afghanistan and Pakistan will also receive benefits through transit fees.
Benefits for India
- Energy Security: It will bring India much needed energy at competitive pricing, and could easily supply about 15% of India’s projected needs.
- Geostrategic Edge: It gives India an opportunity to secure its interest in Central Asia. TAPI’s success will also ensure that India, Pakistan and Afghanistan find ways of cooperating on other issues as well.
Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY)
Context: According to recent report, Aadhaar cards are being misused to create fake beneficiaries for gaining benefits under Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY).
About Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY)
- It was launched in 2015 and is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme, providing central grants to the State Governments for specific activities (90:10 for NE states & 75:25 for rest).
- It has been conceived amalgamating ongoing schemes viz. Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme (AIBP) of the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation (MoWR,RD&GR), Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP) of Department of Land Resources (DoLR) and the On Farm Water Management (OFWM) of Department of Agriculture and Cooperation (DAC).
- Objective of PMKSY
- To achieve convergence of investments in irrigation at the field level
- Expand cultivable area under assured irrigation.
- Improve on-farm water use efficiency to reduce wastage of water.
- Enhance the adoption of precision-irrigation and other water-saving technologies.
- Monitoring: It is supervised and monitored by an Inter-Ministerial National Steering Committee (NSC) will be constituted under the Chairmanship of Prime Minister with Union Ministers from concerned Ministries.
- A National Executive Committee (NEC) will be constituted under the Chairmanship of Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog to oversee programme implementation, allocation of resources, inter-ministerial coordination, monitoring & performance assessment, addressing administrative issues etc.
Components of PMKSY
- Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP): It aims for financial support to irrigation projects.
- The inclusion criteria have been relaxed for projects under tribal and drought-prone areas.
- Har Khet Ko Pani (HKKP): It aims for the enhancement of physical access on the farm and the expansion of cultivable areas under assured irrigation.
- Watershed Development: It is implemented by the Department of Land Resources.
- It focuses on the development of rainfed areas towards soil and water conservation, regeneration of groundwater, arresting runoff and promoting extension activities related to water harvesting and management.
- Per Drop More Crop (PDMC): It is implemented by the Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.
- The dedicated Micro Irrigation Fund (MIF) is with NABARD under PMKSY.
Context: Recently, Indian Airforce (IAF) has started using Chinook helicopters to help the Border Roads Organization (BRO) restore the twin paths to the Amarnath cave shrine.
About Chinook Helicopters
- It is developed by American rotorcraft company Vertol and manufactured by Boeing Vertol (later known as Boeing Rotorcraft Systems).
- Chinooks have a unique twin engine, tandem rotor design.
- The Chinook is a multi-role, vertical-lift platform, which is used for transporting troops, artillery, equipment and fuel.
- It is also used for humanitarian and disaster relief operations and in missions such as transportation of relief supplies and mass evacuation of refugees.
- It can lift very heavy weights. It has multiple doors to load cargo and three external ventral cargo hooks to carry suspended loads.
- Apart from Lockheed C-130 Hercules, it is the only cargo aircraft designed in 1960 that is being manufactured and used in active service.
- The main cabin can hold up to 33 fully-equipped troops.
- For medical evacuation, the cabin can accommodate 24 litters (stretchers).
- It has a travel range of 741 kilometer.
- The chopper has top speed of 310 km per hour.
- India received the first batch of Chinook helicopters in February 2019.
- Chinooks serve the armed forces of 19 countries around the world.