1) New Ramsar sites: India adds 11 more wetlands to the list of Ramsar sites to make total 75 Ramsar sites covering an area of 13,26,677 ha in the country in the 75th year of Independence.
- Odisha – Tampara Lake and Hirakud Reservoir, Ansupa Lake
- Madhya Pradesh – Yashwant Sagar
- Tamil Nadu – Chitrangudi Bird Sanctuary, Suchindram Theroor Wetland Complex, Vaduvur Bird Sanctuary and Kanjirankulam Bird Sanctuary
- Maharashtra – Thane Creek
- Jammu and Kashmir – Hygam Wetland Conservation Reserve and Shallbugh Wetland Conservation Reserve
2) Spcial Economic Zones: In the Union Budget this year, the government proposed to replace the existing law governing Special Economic Zones (SEZs) with a new legislation to enable states to become partners in ‘Development of Enterprise and Service Hubs’ (DESH).
- An SEZ is a territory within a country that is typically duty-free and has different business and commercial laws chiefly to encourage investment and create employment.
- Asia’s first EPZ (Export Processing Zones) was established in 1965 at Kandla, Gujarat.
- The Special Economic Zones Act was passed in 2005. The Act came into force along with the SEZ Rules in 2006. Presently, 379 SEZs are notified, out of which 265 are operational.
- About 64% of the SEZs are located in five states – Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.
- The Board of Approval is the apex body and is headed by the Secretary, Department of Commerce (Ministry of Commerce and Industry).
3) Asymmetrical federalism: means federalism based on unequal powers and relationships in political, administrative, and fiscal arrangements between the units constituting a federation.
- Asymmetry in the arrangements in a federation can be viewed in both vertical (between Centre and states) and horizontal (among the states) senses.
4) DigiYatra: The ‘DigiYatra’ is a Biometric Enabled Seamless Travel experience (BEST) based on Facial Recognition Technology. It aims to provide a paperless and seamless travel experience to the passengers.
- “DigiYatra is a unique initiative of the Government of India, coordinated by the Ministry of Civil Aviation.
- DigiYatra envisages that travellers pass through various checkpoints at the airport through paperless and contactless processing, using facial features to establish their identity, which would be linked to the boarding pass.
5) Udarshakti: It is a bilateral air exercise between India and Malaysia at Kuantan (Malaysia)
- Other exercises: Joint military exercises “Harimau Shakti” are held annually between the two countries.