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News in Short

News in Short - 22-October-2020

Recycled gas from stars surrounds Milky Way galaxy

Date: 22 October 2020 Tags: Space
  • Observations made by a small spacecraft called HaloSat have shown that the Milky Way galaxy is surrounded by a clumpy halo of hot gases that is continually being supplied with material ejected by birthing or dying stars.
  • The heated gaseous halo around the Milky Way was the incubator for the Milky Way's formation some 13 billion years ago and could help solve a longstanding puzzle about where the missing matter of the universe might reside.
  • Every galaxy has a circumgalactic medium, and these regions are crucial to understanding not only how galaxies formed and evolved but also how the universe progressed from a kernel of helium and hydrogen to a cosmological expanse teeming with stars, planets, comets, and all other sorts of celestial constituents.

Sweden bans Huawei and ZTE from upcoming 5G networks

Date: 22 October 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • Sweden has banned telecoms equipment from Huawei and ZTE in its 5G network, joining other European nations that have restricted the role of Chinese suppliers on security grounds.
  • European governments have been tightening controls on Chinese companies building 5G networks following diplomatic pressure from Washington, which alleges Huawei equipment could be used by Beijing for spying. Huawei has repeatedly denied being a national security risk.
  • The United Kingdom in July ordered Huawei equipment to be purged completely from its 5G network by 2027, becoming one of the first European countries to do so.

Punjab passes its own agriculture bills

Date: 22 October 2020 Tags: Bills & Laws
  • Punjab became the first State in the country to formally reject the Central government’s three agriculture sector legislations, with its Legislative Assembly unanimously passing three Bills to negate the Union laws.
  • The Assembly passed a resolution rejecting the Central legislations and the proposed Electricity Amendment Bill and demanding their immediate annulment.
  • It also sought an ordinance to protect the Minimum Support Price (MSP) and ensure the continuance of procurement by the Centre. Punjab farm Bills provides for minimum 3 years imprisonment on sale-purchase below MSP
  • The three State Bills provide for imprisonment of not less than three years and fines for sale-purchase of wheat or paddy under a farming agreement below the MSP, besides prevention of hoarding and black-marketing of agricultural produce, among other things.

Hybrid model of smart fence tested along LoC

Date: 22 October 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • The Army has significantly improved its electronic surveillance along the Line of Control (LoC) to check infiltration, and work on converting the existing border fence into a smart fence integrated with several sensors is under way.
  • The fence will be integrated with LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) sensors, infrared sensors, and cameras among others.
  • The existing fence called the Anti-Infiltration Obstacle System (AIOS) is located about 700 m from the LoC. With its high rate of degradation every year due to snow, the Army came up with a proposal to install a smart fence with various sensors integrated into it, and a pilot project was subsequently taken up.
  • Due to snow, the iron fence becomes brittle and consequently 60-70% of the fence has to be repaired every year. Every year, there is a major exercise over four months from March to June to bring that fence up.

China opposes India- Taiwan trade ties

Date: 22 October 2020 Tags: India & World
  • China has asked India to approach ties with Taiwan prudently and properly and said it would firmly oppose any official exchanges between New Delhi and Taipei.
  • India and Taiwan in 2018 already signed a bilateral investment agreement. India-Taiwan trade ties have expanded since and Taiwanese firms are prominent investors in India, although India and Taiwan do not maintain formal diplomatic relations.
  • Earlier this month, the Chinese Embassy in Delhi raised with India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) the putting up of posters in New Delhi on October 10, wishing Taiwan “Happy National Day”.