AWARDS AND HONOURS
1. Odisha activist wins Goldman Environmental Prize
Prafulla Samantara of Odisha has become one of the six activists from across the world to receive the Goldman Environmental Prize 2017, the world’s biggest award for grassroots environmental activists. Samantara led a historic 12-year legal battle that affirmed the indigenous Dongria Kondh’s land rights and protected the Niyamgiri Hills from a massive, open-pit aluminum ore mine, by Vedanta.
The Goldman Environmental Foundation salutes environmental heroes from each of the world’s six inhabited continents annually and recognizes grassroots activists for significant achievement to protect the environment and their communities.
2. India’s first sea ropeway to connect Mumbai & Elephanta Island
India’s first and longest ropeway to connect Mumbai with the famous Elephanta Island in the Arabian Sea is planned to be constructed by the Mumbai Port Trust. The 8-km ropeway will begin from Sewri in Mumbai’s east coast and end at Raigad district’s Elephanta Island, globally renowned for Elephanta Caves, a Unesco World Heritage site.
Known locally as Gharapuri Caves, the small 16 sq. km island has several archaeological remains pointing to its rich cultural heritage, including the famous temples carved out of rocks.
3. Uttarakhand deploys drones to monitor forest fires
Sophisticated drones have been pressed into service in Uttarakhand forests to check for instances of fire. State forest department claim that this is the first such instance anywhere in the country that these devices are being used to monitor forest fires. The drones come with real time monitoring facility.
Two ‘Mavic Pro’ drones, with capability of flight elevation of more than 16,000 feet and flight time of 21 minutes, have been deployed. They can fly at a speed of 65 km/hour and are equipped with forward and downward vision system, which enable them to provide maximum visibility in time to deal with forest fire incidents.
4. Agriculture Ministry unveils model APMC Act
To give farmers more freedom to sell their produce, the agriculture ministry has unveiled a model Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) Act which defines each state/UT as a single unified market area. The move will curb the role of APMC mandis. The State/UT Agricultural Produce and Livestocks Marketing (promotion and facilitation) Act, 2017, which is being sent to states for adoption, allows existing APMC mandis to enforce regulation only in their market yard which would allow private sector players to set up mandis.
5. NDMA conducts unique state level mock exercise on forest fire in Uttarakhand
The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) conducted a first-of-its-kind State-level mock exercise on forest fire in Uttarakhand. The mock exercise, aimed at assessing the efficacy of integrating the preparedness and response mechanisms of the forest department with those of the district administration, has been conducted in collaboration with the State Government.
The simulation exercise was conducted simultaneously at multiple locations, including residential areas adjoining forests, across all 13 districts covering different types of forests and varying degrees of severity of forest fires.
6. Govt to launch portal to identify sporting talent
The Union sports ministry will soon launch a web portal for identifying and selecting promising sportspersons in the country and help them financially to excel in their fields. The ministry will offer financial help of Rs 5 lakh to 1,000 sports talents who will be selected every year through a transparent and open process with the help of the portal.
The Portal will simplify the process of searching for talent scattered throughout the country. The scheme will consider talents aged 8 years and more and extend them financial assistance for a period of eight years
7. Trump calls for sanctions against North Korea
North Korea conducted a big live-fire exercise to mark the foundation of its military as a U.S. submarine docked in South Korea in a show of force amid growing concern over the North’s nuclear and missile programs. Fears have risen in recent weeks that North Korea would conduct another nuclear test or long-range missile launch in defiance of U.N. sanctions.
North Korea’s growing nuclear and missile threat is perhaps the most serious security challenge confronting U.S. President Donald Trump. He has vowed to prevent North Korea from being able to hit the United States with a nuclear missile
8. April 25 – World Malaria Day
World Malaria Day (WMD) is an international observance commemorated every year on 25 April and recognizes global efforts to control malaria. WMD is one of eight official global public health campaigns currently marked by the World Health Organization (WHO).
2017 THEME : A Push For Prevention
9. April 25 – World Penguin Day
World Penguin Day is observed on April 25. The day was timed to coincide with the annual northward march to the sea of Antarctic penguins, as autumn edges toward winter in that part of the world.
Antarctic penguins in particular are vulnerable to climate change, with shifting ice reducing where they can live and warming seas affecting their prey. Two thirds of the world’s 18 penguin species, whose habitats range from the equator to Antarctica, are in decline.
10. Indian shot putter Manpreet Kaur becomes world number one
Indian shot putter Manpreet Kaur became world number one after winning the goal medal at the Asian Grand Prix in China on Monday. With a throw of 18.86 metres, Manpreet defeated Olympic champion Michelle Carter who finished second. Manpreet’s previous best 17.96m was set in 2015 during Open National meet in Kolkata.