75th Republic Day
Syllabus: GS.2: Indian Polity: National Events in News
Syllabus: GS.2: Indian Polity: National Events in News
Context: The 75th Republic Day was celebrated on January 26th and marks the adoption of the Constitution of India, which came into effect on this day in 1950.
Facts about the Republic Day, 2024:
- The theme of this year’s Republic Day is ‘Viksit Bharat’ and ‘Bharat: Loktantra ki Matruka’, symbolizing India’s aspirations and its role as a nurturer of democracy.
- The festivities commenced with the President unfurling the national flag, accompanied by an awe-inspiring display of military prowess and cultural splendor.
- Notably, French President Emmanuel Macron graced the occasion as the Chief Guest.
- A remarkable historical touch was witnessed as Presidents Droupadi Murmu and Emmanuel Macron partook in a ceremonial horse-drawn buggy ride, replacing the customary limousine after four decades. The buggy, once utilized by the Viceroy of India during the British era, made a poignant return to the festivities.
- The French Air and Space Force made history by participating in Kartavya Path’s fly-past with two Rafales and one A330 MRTT, marking France as the first foreign nation to join. In 2016, the French regiment also became the inaugural foreign contingent to march in the parade.
- Women empowerment took center stage during the Republic Day celebrations – Major Saumya Shukla hoisted the National Flag, while 112 talented women artists showcased their prowess with folk and tribal percussion instruments. Additionally, an all-women tri-service contingent made its inaugural march, symbolizing the strength and resilience of Indian women.
Beating Retreat ceremony
On January 29th, India’s capital, New Delhi, will witness a unique spectacle – the Beating Retreat ceremony. Held annually at the iconic Vijay Chowk, this centuries-old tradition dates back to the early 1950s, brainchild of Indian Army Major Roberts.
AADHAAR CARD: Clarification on Citizenship and Birth Date Proof
Syllabus: GS.2: Governance: Government Initiatives in News
Context: New Aadhaar cards and PDF versions now clearly state they’re “proof of identity, not citizenship or date of birth,” discouraging their use for such purposes by government departments and other organizations.
- Aadhaar is a 12-digit unique identification number issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to every individual resident of India.
- The Aadhaar card serves as proof of identity and is valid anywhere in India for any identification purposes.
- Any individual, irrespective of age and gender, who is a resident of India, may voluntarily enroll to obtain Aadhaar number.
- As per the Aadhaar Act 2016, Indian citizens need to reside in the country for 182 days or more in the year preceding the date of enrolment.
- Minors, too, can apply for the Aadhaar Card. Children under the age of 5 will get the Blue Colour Aadhaar, which needs to get updated after they become 5 years old.
- The Aadhaar number is a proof of identity, however, it does not confer any right of citizenship or domicile in respect of an Aadhaar number holder.
- The Aadhaar number can be deactivated or omitted by the Issuing Authority in certain cases, such as if the enrollment is found to be false or if the biometric data do not match. Non-usage of Aadhaar for three consecutive years can lead to deactivation.
INDIA, FRANCE TO STRENGTHEN DEFENCE TIES
Syllabus: GS. 2: IR: Bilateral Relations – Indian & France
Context: During French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to New Delhi on India’s Republic Day, India and France finalized their defense industrial roadmap along with several other strategically significant agreements.
More About the Deal:
- A defence industrial roadmap was established to facilitate joint designing and production projects in air, space, maritime, land warfare, robotics, and artificial intelligence technology.
- Defence space cooperation was enhanced to improve space situational awareness and prevent space collisions, with NSIL signing a MoU with Arianespace on satellite launch capabilities.
- Tata and Airbus are set to establish a final assembly line in India for manufacturing H125 helicopters, aligning with the “Make in India” campaign.
- Bilateral talks addressed regional and global issues, including the Red Sea crisis and the Ukraine war.
- Agreements were reached on mobility for young professionals and activating a five-year Schengen visa provision for Indian students completing their Masters in France.
- Two mega multi-billion dollar defence deals in the pipeline between the two countries — the 26 Rafale-M fighter jets for the Indian Navy’s aircraft carriers, and three additional Scorpene-class conventional submarines — are currently in the cost negotiation phase.
Mr. Macron’s acceptance of Mr. Modi’s Republic Day invitation, following President Biden’s inability to attend, is seen as bolstering India-France ties. This marked Macron’s third visit to India and the sixth time a French President has been invited to the Republic Day parade, the highest for any country, underscoring the significance of the relationship.
Syllabus: GS 3: Ecology & Conservation – Species in News
Context: After a gap of about three years, the rare Golden tiger has been spotted in UNESCO world heritage site Kaziranga National Park and Tiger Reserve (KNPTR).
About Golden Tiger:
- Tigers typically sport black, orange, and white, but a rare genetic quirk in some results in a stunning golden appearance, exemplified by the unique ‘Kazi 106F’ tiger in Kaziranga, India.
- ‘Kazi 106F’ stands as India’s sole living golden tiger, captivating observers with its distinct coloration.
- The absence of black pigment and faded orange contribute to their striking golden hue, underscoring both their beauty and their perilous status in the wild.
- This variant, also known as a tabby or strawberry tiger, arises from a recessive gene, showcasing blond or pale-golden fur with reddish stripes instead of the typical black.
- With fewer than 30 believed to exist globally, they’re critically endangered according to the IUCN Red List, facing threats from habitat loss and poaching.
Smart Lander for Investigating Moon (SLIM)
Syllabus: GS 3: Space Science – International Space Missions in News
Context: Japan’s space agency has confirmed its moon-lander successfully achieved its pinpoint landing on the moon on January 19.
About JAXA’s the SLIM:
- SLIM is a small-scale exploration lander designed for pinpoint landings on the Moon’s surface, reduction in the size and weight of equipment used in Moon landings, and investigation into the Moon’s origins.
- It will also test technology fundamental to exploration in low-gravity environments, an important requirement for future scientific investigation of the solar system.
- Launched on Sept 7, 2023, weighing just 590 kg, it’s Japan’s second attempt this year after the HAKUTO-R M1’s crash. It took four months to reach the Moon, unlike Chandrayaan-3’s one month, due to different propulsion.
- It used the weak-stability boundary theory for fuel efficiency, swinging around Earth multiple times to build kinetic energy before heading to the Moon.
- Japan became the fifth country to achieve a moon landing after the United States, the former USSR, China, and India.