Essential Facts (Prelims): 17 December, 2018


  • It is a military communication satellite.
  • Although all Indian communication satellites offer capacity to the armed forces, GSAT-7A will be the first one built primarily for the IAF.
  • About 70% of it would be for the Air Force and the rest for the needs of the Army.
  • The satellite using Ku band will enable superior real time aircraft-to-aircraft communication; and between planes that are in flight and their commanders on the ground.
  • It would enhance by many times the coverage now provided by ground communication systems such as radars and stations of the Army.
  • Out-of-sight and remote areas where ground infrastructure and signals are difficult would get into the critical information loop.

Tiger deaths

  • India recorded 95 tiger deaths in 2018, 41 outside reserves.
  • Of them, 14 occurred in Maharashtra, which accounted for over 34% of all deaths outside tiger reserves in the country.
  • A total of 19 tiger deaths were recorded in Maharashtra in 2018, so deaths outside tiger reserves comprise more than 70% of all tiger deaths in the State.
  • The NTCA maintains the official database of tiger mortality in the country,.
  • Maharashtra is home to 190 tigers, but more than a third of its tigers, or about 74 of them, live outside tiger reserves in the State.

Information Fusion Centre (IFC)

  • The Navy will formally inaugurate the Information Fusion Centre (IFC) for the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
  • Through this Centre, information on “white shipping”, or commercial shipping, will be exchanged with countries in the region to improve maritime domain awareness in the Indian Ocean. .
  • The IFC has been established at the Navy’s Information Management and Analysis Centre (IMAC) in Gurugram.


  • India has signed the ascension agreement to the Trans Regional Maritime Network (T-RMN) which facilitates information exchange on the movement of commercial traffic on the high seas.
  • The multilateral construct comprises of 30 countries and is steered by Italy.
  • The information is available primarily through the Automatic Identification System (AIS) fitted on merchant ships with more than 300 gross registered tonnage as mandated by the International Maritime Organisation.
  • The AIS information comprises name, MMSI number, position, course, speed, last port visited, destination and so on.
  • Such multilateral agreements are necessitated due to the large traffic in the Indian Ocean which cannot be entirely monitored by any one nation.


  • It is a camera aboard NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO).
  • It has captured the image of the InSight lander, which recently touched down on the Red Planet.
  • This is not the first time HiRISE has photographed a Mars lander.
    Nikshay Poshan Yojana
  • It is a direct benefit transfer scheme for TB patients.
  • It was rolled out in April’18.


  • Male employees of the Maharashtra government are now entitled to childcare leave in case their spouses are bedridden or incapacitated due to mental health problems and are unable to take care of the children.