PIB News 16th Sep, 2020


(General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations, Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.)

Global Initiative to reduce Land Degradation and Coral Reef program launched at G20 Environment Ministers Meet.
India is committed to working with G20 nations for a better world: Shri Prakash Javadekar

The Environment Ministerial Meeting (EMM) of the G20 countries took place today through video conferencing under the Presidency of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Representing India, Union Environment, Climate Change and Forest Minister Shri Prakash Javadekar said, India has taken significant steps to protect environment and forest and wildlife as well as combating pollution and climate change.

Shri Javadekar said, India is committed to work with G20 nations for a better world. He said, India is blessed with vast bio-diversity and ecosystem. The Minister said, India has been taking measures to enhance coral reef conservation. He noted that India’s steps towards dealing with climate change have been remarkable and stated that the world has to channel its best practices to deal with climate change and to get concrete results.

The Minister highlighted the efforts made by National Coastal Mission Programme under which government has taken many steps to protect and sustain coral reefs in the country. He also shared the efforts made by India towards achieving land degradation neutrality, and towards attainment of global goals of climate change mitigation and adaptation. He said India believes that Equity, Common but differentiated responsibilities, finance and technology partnerships are key pillars and India is walking the talk on Paris Agreement and its Climate commitments. India is taking adequate action to meet Paris Agreement goals and is one of the few countries compliant with it.

Shri Javadekar applauded the launch of Global Initiative to reduce Land Degradation and Coral Reef program and two documents on climate change related to managing emissions and climate change adaptations under the G20 this year.

The Global Initiative on Reducing Land Degradation aims to strengthen the implementation of existing frameworks to prevent, halt, and reverse land degradation within G20 member states and globally, taking into account possible implications on the achievement of other SDGs and adhering to the principle of doing no harm.

The Global Coral Reef R&D Accelerator Platform is an innovative action-oriented initiative aimed at creating a global research and development (R&D) program to advance research, innovation and capacity building in all facets of coral reef conservation, restoration, and adaptation, and strengthen ongoing efforts and commitments made to enhance coral reefs conservation and their further degradation.

Shri Javadekar thanked His Excellency Eng. Abdulrahman Al-Fadley, Chair, Environment Ministers Meeting, and also the Environment Minister of Troika member – HE Shinjiro Koizumi from Japan and HE Sergio Costa from Italy for hosting the meeting.


(General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations, Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.)

Scheme for Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHCs) Launched on 31.07.2020
Providing Accommodation at Affordable Rent to Urban Migrants/ Poor
Estimated Amount of Rs. 600 Crore Envisaged as Total Outlay
2.95 Lakh Beneficiaries Envisaged to be Benefitted, Initially

Scheme for Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHCs), a sub-scheme under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Urban (PMAY-U), for providing accommodation at affordable rent to urban migrants/ poor has been launched on 31.07.2020 after approval of the Union Cabinet. Following steps have been taken to implement the scheme of ARHCs for urban migrants/poor:

  1. Operational Guidelines of ARHCs along with other implementation framework have been circulated to all States/Union Territories (UTs) for planning and implementation. E-copy of the guidelines has been uploaded on the websites of ARHC, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana - Urban (PMAY-U) and Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA).
  2. A draft Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) has been circulated to all States/UTs to sign with MoHUA.
  3. A model Request for Proposal (RFP) has been shared with States/UTs for selection of Concessionaire to developexisting Government funded vacant housing complexes to be used as ARHCs for a period of 25 years under Repair/Retrofit, Develop, Operate and Transfer (RDOT) on Public Private Partnership (PPP) Mode.
  4. Expression of Interest (EoI) has been prepared for shortlisting of Public/Private Entities for construction of ARHCs on their own vacant land.
  5. A sustained and focused Information Education and Communication (IEC) strategy for outreach and off take of ARHCs has been prepared. A whiteboard animation on ARHCs along with various brochures, leaflets and other communication materials have been designed and shared with the stakeholders.

(b): An estimated amount of Rs. 600 crore has been envisaged as total outlay of the Scheme till the Mission period of PMAY-U i.e. March 2022.

(c): A total of 2.95 lakh beneficiaries have been envisaged to be benefitted by this Scheme, initially. Through Model-1, approximately 75,000 existing Government funded vacant housing complexes in various cities are targeted to be converted into ARHCs. In Model-2, new construction of 40,000 single/double bedroom houses and 1,80,000 dormitory beds are targeted to be operationalized using innovative and alternate technologies.

This was informed by Minister of State (I/C) for Housing and Urban Affairs Shri Hardeep Singh Puri in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.


(General Studies-III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management, Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.)

Scientists from Indian Institute of Astrophysics find a new model to probe how black holes rip apart starts

Scientists have found a new way to probe into super massive black holes – detecting their properties like mass and spin by observing how they rip apart stars. They have found a model which can infer black hole mass, its spin by observing how the stars are ripped apart on coming to the vicinity of these astronomical bodies with high gravitational force found at the centre of some massive galaxies.

Most black holes lead isolated lives and are impossible to study. Astronomers study them by watching for their effects on nearby stars and gas. Stars are disrupted when the black hole's tidal gravity exceeds the star's self-gravity, and this phenomenon is called tidal disruption events (TDE). This model, which can be applied after the star is observed to be tidally disrupted, and an accretion disk is formed, will help in expanding our understanding of the physics besides building valuable statistics of the black hole mass and stellar mass.

Super massive black holes govern the movement of stars orbiting within their gravitational potential, and their tidal forces can disrupt or rip apart the stars that come to their vicinity. Scientists from the Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA) who had earlier calculated the rate of disruption and its statistics, focused on the observations of a given stellar disruption event (TDE) in their new study and inferred the black hole mass, star mass, and the point of closest approach of the star's orbit. T. Mageshwaran (now at TIFR), as a part of his Ph.D. thesis work at IIA with his supervisor, A. Mangalam (IIA), developed a detailed semi-analytic model of the dynamics of accretion and outflow in TDEs. Their research was published in the New Astronomy (2020).

The stars in a galaxy are captured and ripped apart about a few times in a million years. The disrupted debris follows a Keplerian orbit and returns with a mass fallback rate that decreases with time. The in falling debris interacts with the out flowing debris resulting in the circularization and the formation of an accretion disk – the temporary accumulation of matter outside the back hole before it dives into the black hole. This emits in various spectral bands from X-ray, optical to infrared wavelengths. The transient nature of TDE luminosity makes it an ideal laboratory to study the physics of an evolving accretion disk that includes the gas dynamics of the inflow, outflow, and the radiation.

The team predicted the detection of stellar disruption by black holes and related emission via viscous accretion from the formed disk by simulating the evolution of luminosity for TDE disks in various spectral bands. They used the prediction to infer the mass and spin of the black hole.

The tidal disruption events are crucial and useful phenomena to detect and predict the mass of super massive black holes in quiescent galaxies. This time-dependent model by IIA provides insights into disk evolution in black hole gravity. 

The scientists further explain that the in falling debris forms a seed accretion disk that evolves due to mass loss by accretion onto the black hole and wind but gains mass by fall-back of the debris.

The highlight of this model is the inclusion of all the essentials elements --accretion, fall back, and the wind, self-consistently, in a formulation that is numerically fast to execute and shows good fits to the observations compared to the earlier steady structure accretion models.

This time-dependent model simulates the luminosity, which along with the capture rate of stars for tidal disruption, black hole demographics (population distribution of black holes in the Universe), and instrument specification of survey mission, results in the expected detection rate of TDEs. By comparing the expected detection rate with the detection rate from observation, one can probe into black hole demographics. The fits to the observations yield parameters of the star and the black hole that are useful for the statistical studies and build the demographics of black holes.




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