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[Newsbits] 12.01.2024: Ugram Rifle, Conjoined Silverline, XPoSat & more

newsbits mindmap notes

International Court of Justice (ICJ) mind map
Recent News
Hearings
Date
January 11-12, 2024
Location
Peace Palace, The Hague
Parties
South Africa
Israel
Issue
Alleged Genocide in Gaza
When
Instituted
December 29, 2023
Oral Arguments
South Africa: January 11, 2024
Israel: January 12, 2024
Why
Genocide Allegations
Against Palestinians in Gaza
Basis
Violations of Genocide Convention
What
South Africa's Application
Provisional Measures Request
Prevent Harm to Palestinians
Ensure Israel's Compliance
Genocide Convention Articles
Killing Members of Group
Conditions of Life Causing Destruction
Israel's Response
Denies Allegations
Labels as "Blood Libel"
Where
Gaza Strip
Scene of Alleged Genocide
International Court of Justice
Seat in The Hague
Who
South Africa
Applicant
Israel
Defendant
Joan E. Donoghue
ICJ President
Dikgang Moseneke
South Africa's Ad-hoc Judge
Aharon Barak
Israel's Ad-hoc Judge
How
Legal Proceedings
Examination of Evidence
Oral Arguments
Decision on Provisional Measures
Significance
Protection
Palestinian Civilians
Upholding International Law
Genocide Convention Enforcement
Challenges
Political Tensions
International Relations Impact
Compliance
Enforcement Challenges
Way Forward
ICJ Ruling
Awaiting Decision
International Response
Varying Support and Opposition

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is currently hearing a significant case brought by South Africa against Israel, alleging violations of the Genocide Convention in relation to the treatment of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Initiated on December 29, 2023, the hearings took place on January 11-12, 2024, at the Peace Palace in The Hague. South Africa’s application requests provisional measures to prevent further harm to Palestinians and to ensure Israel’s compliance with the Genocide Convention. Israel has strongly denied these allegations, terming them as “blood libel.” This case is notable not just for its legal implications but also for the potential political and diplomatic repercussions it may have on international relations, especially considering the divided global response to the allegations.

Shri Ramlala Darshan (Ayodhya Dham) Scheme mind map
Recent News
Chhattisgarh announces scheme
January 2024
When
Implemented in 2024
Why
To visit newly constructed Ram temple
What
Implementing Authority
Chhattisgarh Tourism Board
Eligibility
Residents of Chhattisgarh
Age 18 to 75
Health examination by District Medical Board
Disabled people eligible
Phase One
People above 55 years
Beneficiaries
20,000 people annually
Committee
Constituted in each district
Under District Collector
MoU
With IRCTC
Covering 900 km
Security, health, food, transport
Budget
Provided by Tourism Department
Accompaniment
Government official or team
Where
Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh
Who
Chhattisgarh residents
Chhattisgarh Tourism Board
IRCTC
How
Train journey
From Durg-Raipur, Raigarh, Ambikapur
Significance
Religious significance
Cultural experience
Challenges
Managing large number of pilgrims
Way Forward
Expand to more beneficiaries

The Shri Ramlala Darshan (Ayodhya Dham) Scheme, recently announced by the Chhattisgarh government, is a state initiative allowing residents to visit the newly constructed Ram temple in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh. This scheme, implemented by the Chhattisgarh Tourism Board, targets about 20,000 beneficiaries each year, specifically residents aged between 18 to 75 who pass a health examination. In its first phase, it focuses on individuals over 55 years old. The scheme includes a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) to manage a 900 km journey, ensuring facilities like security, health, food, and transport. The scheme holds significant religious and cultural importance, providing an opportunity for devotees to experience the cultural heritage associated with Ayodhya.

/ Species
Conjoined Silverline mind map
Recent News
January 2024
Indian news
When
First sighted 2008
Studied extensively 2021
Why
Research and conservation
What
Size of one rupee coin
Endemic to Western Ghats
Found in
Bramhagiri Wildlife Sanctuary
Kodagu, Karnataka
Where
Mid-elevation evergreen forests
Who
Researchers from NCBS
Dr. Krushnamegh Kunte
Team members
Ashok Sengupta
Ujwala Pawari
Viraj Nawgel
How
Collected and studied samples
Distinctive features
Fused spots and bands
Shiny silver lines
Significance
First in four decades
Highlights biodiversity
Challenges
Limited sightings
Way Forward
Further explorations
DNA analysis for species identification

The Conjoined Silverline, a new butterfly species discovered in Karnataka’s Western Ghats, represents a significant find in the field of biodiversity and conservation. Identified by a team of researchers from the National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS), this species, the size of a one-rupee coin, was first seen in 2008 but remained unclassified until extensive studies conducted in 2021. Noted for its distinctive wing patterns with fused spots and shiny silver lines, it underscores the rich biodiversity of the Western Ghats and the importance of continued research in these regions.

Global Risks Report 2024 mind map
When
January 10, 2024
Who
World Economic Forum
What
Global Risks Perception Survey
Insights from
1,500 global experts
Analyzes global risks
Through three-time frames
Four structural forces
Climate change
Demographic bifurcation
Technological acceleration
Geostrategic shifts
Top 5 risks outlook 2024
Environmental risks
Extreme weather
El Niño-Southern Oscillation
Misinformation and disinformation
Societal and political divides
Impact on 3 billion voters
Where
Global scope
Why
To understand
Current and emerging risks
To support decision-makers
In balancing crises
And long-term priorities
How
Comprehensive analysis
Expert insights
Forward-thinking approach
Provides actionable steps
For resilience
In shifting risk environment
Significance
Informs policies and strategies
Organizational level
Governmental level
Helps leaders
Anticipate future trends
Prepare for risks
Challenges
Predominantly negative outlook
Next two years
84% respondents concerned
Next decade
92% pessimistic
Way Forward
Building resilience
Against evolving risks
In converging risk landscape

The Global Risks Report 2024, published on January 10, 2024, by the World Economic Forum in collaboration with Zurich and Marsh McLennan, presents the findings of the Global Risks Perception Survey with insights from nearly 1,500 global experts. The report analyzes global risks through three time frames and identifies four structural forces shaping global risks: climate change, demographic bifurcation, technological acceleration, and geostrategic shifts. Environmental risks, especially extreme weather events, and the challenges of misinformation and disinformation are highlighted as significant concerns. The report aims to aid decision-makers in balancing current crises with long-term priorities and offers a comprehensive analysis, expert insights, and a forward-thinking approach to building resilience in a shifting risk environment. However, it also notes a predominantly negative outlook for the world in the coming years, with a significant majority of respondents expressing concern and pessimism.

/ Diseases
Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) mind map
Recent News
January 2024
Cases in various countries
United States
China
United Kingdom
Spain
Ecuador
Vietnam
When
Identified since 1997
Recent human cases
2022 to March 2023
Why
Occurs in birds
Sporadic human infection
What
Influenza A virus subtype H5N1
Clades
2.3.4.4b
2.3.2.1c
Where
Global presence
Recent cases in multiple countries
Who
Affects birds
Human cases
Exposed to infected birds
How
Transmission
Bird to human
Limited human-to-human
Significance
Rare in humans
Challenges
High fatality rate in birds
Sporadic human fatalities
Way Forward
Active monitoring
Exposed individuals
Influenza testing
Public health laboratories

Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI), specifically the H5N1 subtype, primarily affects birds but can sporadically infect humans, typically those exposed to infected birds. Identified since 1997, it has a global presence, with recent cases in various countries including the U.S., China, and the U.K. HPAI is rare in humans but can be severe, with a high fatality rate in birds and sporadic human fatalities. Efforts to combat HPAI include active monitoring of exposed individuals and influenza testing in public health laboratories.

2023 Hottest Calendar Year mind map
Recent News
Current Month
1.48°C above pre-industrial times
Earth's average temperature 14.98°C
When
Throughout 2023
Why
Greenhouse gases
El Nino effect
Natural oscillations
Increased solar activity
2022 undersea volcano eruption
What
Record-breaking temperatures
Warmest June to December
Every day exceeded 1°C above pre-industrial level
173 days over 1.5°C warmer
Where
Global phenomenon
Who
European climate agency Copernicus
Scientists and agencies worldwide
How
Climate change
Global warming
Significance
Awareness of climate change
Calls for action
Challenges
Risk to ecosystems
Extreme weather events
Threats to human health
Way Forward
Transition from fossil fuels
Stronger climate action

The year 2023 marked a significant and concerning milestone in climate change history, as it was recorded as the hottest calendar year since measurements began. The global average temperature reached 1.48°C above pre-industrial levels, with an average of 14.98°C, making it a year of extreme heat and weather anomalies. The principal cause of this unprecedented rise in temperature is attributed to the increase in greenhouse gases, along with factors like the El Niño effect, natural ocean oscillations, augmented solar activity, and the impact of an undersea volcano eruption in 2022. The year saw every single day exceeding the 1°C above pre-industrial levels, and for nearly half the year, temperatures were over 1.5°C warmer. This phenomenon had global implications, emphasizing the urgency for stronger climate action, particularly the transition away from fossil fuels to mitigate further risks and challenges posed by climate change.

/ Indices/Reports
World Employment and Social Outlook: Trends 2024 Report mind map
Recent News
Global unemployment
Expected to rise in 2024
When
Report released in January 2024
Why
Economic conditions
Deteriorating
Inflation
Persistent
Productivity
Stagnant
What
Jobless rate
Over 5% globally
Additional job seekers
Two million expected
Inequality
Growing
Living standards
Eroded due to inflation
Where
Global impact
Who
ILO
International Labour Organization
Workers
Across the globe
How
Economic trends
Analyzed by ILO
Inflation and productivity
Examined
Significance
Awareness
Of global employment trends
Policy insights
Offered
Challenges
Job market
Uncertain
Living standards
Falling
Inequality
Increasing
Way Forward
Social justice
Need for greater
Economic recovery
Sustainable approach required

The “World Employment and Social Outlook: Trends 2024” report, released by the International Labour Organization (ILO) in January 2024, warns of a rise in global unemployment in the upcoming year. The report highlights that over 5% of the world’s workforce is currently jobless, with an expected increase of two million job seekers. It emphasizes the challenges posed by deteriorating economic conditions, persistent inflation, and stagnant productivity, leading to growing inequality and eroded living standards. The ILO underscores the need for policies promoting social justice and sustainable economic recovery.

Ugram Rifle mind map
Recent News
January 2024
Unveiled by DRDO
Developed with Dvipa Armour
When
Unveiled January 2024
Development started 2 years ago
Why
Replace ageing INSAS Rifles
Enhance firepower
What
7.62 mm calibre
Effective range 500 meters
Weight under 4 kg
20-round magazine
Single and automatic mode
Steel construction
Designed for Army GSQR
Developed under DCPP model
Where
Developed in India
ARDE, Pune
Collaboration with Dvipa Armour, Hyderabad
Who
DRDO
Defence Research and Development Organisation
ARDE
Armament Research and Development Establishment
Dvipa Armour
Private defense firm
How
Collaboration between DRDO and Dvipa Armour
Design and development in 100 days
Prototypes for trial
Significance
Enhanced firepower
Lighter weight for agility
Self-reliance in defense tech
Challenges
Operational testing pending
Replacement for existing rifles
Way Forward
Rigorous testing
Potential adoption by security forces

The Ugram Rifle is a new indigenous assault rifle unveiled by India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in January 2024. Developed in collaboration with Hyderabad-based defense firm Dvipa Armour, the Ugram Rifle is designed to replace the ageing INSAS Rifles in the Indian Armed Forces. This rifle, weighing less than 4 kg, boasts a 7.62 mm calibre with a 20-round magazine and an effective range of 500 meters. It features both single and automatic firing modes and is constructed with steel for durability. The development of the Ugram Rifle aligns with India’s goal of self-reliance in defense technology and represents a significant milestone in the country’s defense manufacturing capabilities.

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