Important Facts for Prelims (14th January 2019) | 14 Jan 2019

Wild Animals Killed in Road and Train Accidents

  • In a response to a question, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) told the Rajya Sabha that 49 elephants were killed in Railway accidents between 2016-18.
  • In the same 3-year period, three tigers were killed in road accidents while eight tigers in railway accidents.
  • In 2016, the MoEFCC issued an advisory document titled ‘Eco-friendly measures to mitigate impacts of linear infrastructure on wildlife’ to mitigate human-animal conflicts. Yet, the death of wild animals have continued unabated.

Farm to Port Project

  • The United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia had decided to use India as a base to address their food security concerns. To implement this, India has announced a Farm-To-Port Project.
  • The farm-to-port project is similar to a special economic zone but in the style of a corporatized farm, where crops would be grown keeping in mind the requirements of UAE and Saudi Arabia’s market.
  • For the first time, India’s export policy identifies the potential of agriculture along with horticulture, dairy, plantation and fisheries.
  • Exporting the produce will give a boost to farm income. If successful, it would create a whole new sector for agro-industries.


  • Kambala is an annual festival celebrated in the Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka.
  • The festival involves the traditional buffalo race generally held from November to March.
  • The buffaloes are made to race one after another in paddy fields as a thanksgiving to the Gods for protecting the animals from diseases.

Commonwealth Secretariat Arbitral Tribunal

  • Recently Justice AK Sikri has turned down government offer to nominate him to Commonwealth Secretariat Arbitral Tribunal (CSAT).
  • This comes days after his vote helped decide the removal of Alok Verma from the post of CBI director.

Commonwealth Secretariat Arbitral Tribunal (CSAT)

  • The Commonwealth Secretariat is the main intergovernmental agency and central institution of the Commonwealth of Nations.
  • The Secretariat is located in London, the United Kingdom.
  • It was established in 1965, plays the role of an arbiter in case of disputes among its 53 member-countries.
  • The CSAT has a total of eight members, including its president. The members are picked up on the basis of regional representations from among persons of high moral character who must hold or have held high judicial office in a Commonwealth country.
  • A CSAT member has a tenure of four years.

Commonwealth of Nations

  • It is an international intergovernmental organization of countries that were mostly former territories of the British Empire and dependencies.
  • It was established by the London Declaration in 1949.
  • Queen Elizabeth II is the head of the Commonwealth.
  • Many countries from Africa, Asia, Americas, Europe and the Pacific have joined the commonwealth.
  • The current membership includes 53 Countries. The membership is based on free and equal voluntary co -operation.
  • The last country to join the Commonwealth was Rwanda in 2009.
  • The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting is a biennial summit meeting of the heads of government from all Commonwealth nations.

India's Largest Startup Ecosystem

  • One of country’s largest startup ecosystems with 1.8 lakh sq ft. facility housing incubation infrastructure across a series of sectors in technology was launched in Kerala.
  • The Integrated Startup Complex under the Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM) includes ultra modern facilities in fields such as biotechnology, computer-aided design, augmented/virtual reality and advanced communication.