Sarat Chandra IAS Academy

Current Affairs – 30th August



Today Topics List:

  1. Driest ever August

  2. Self-Respect marriages

  3. Aditya L1




Driest ever August

    • August experienced the adverse impacts of El Nino on the monsoon rainfall. This August is all set to become the driest ever.
      • August is the second rainiest month in India, after July.
      • Normally August sees about 255 mm rainfall over the country, accounting for about 22 % of the annual rainfall of 1,160 mm.
      • July is the rainiest with 24%.

Driest August:

  • Since 1901, This is the driest August with only 160 mm of rainfall that is 33% deficitfor the month.
    • Never has the country received a rainfall of less than 190 mm of rainfall in August.
    • States like Kerala and Gujarat faced 90 % deficit.
    • Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh experienced more than 50% deficiency in a month.
    • Tamil Nadu which receives rainfall in the winter months has a shortfall of 23%
  • The only regions that received rainfall this August were east and North east. It brought a welcome relief to these regions as June and July have been rainfall deficient in these regions.

Impacts of Systems over Indian Monsoon:

  • El Nino was unfolded in such a manner that rainfall over almost the entire country, barring the east and north east, is suppressed.
  • Except for a short period, Low pressure systems were completely absent in the month of this August.

Impact on Reservoirs:

  • Since the four-month monsoon season brings about 75 % of India’s annual rainfall, the shortage of water in reservoirs for use during the rest of the year is crucial.
    • The combined storage in 146 major reservoirs of the country, as per data till last week, was about 94% of the normal.
  • But, in some state’s reservoirs are running at very low levels.
    • In Kerala and Tamil Nadu, reservoirs are holding only 50% of the water that they normally have during this time of the year.

Impact on Cropping:

  • There are concerns for winter crops. Even the standing Kharif crops, which benefited from plenty of water during sowing time are feeling the stress now.
    • Even a low water intense crop such as Soya Bean crop requires an immediate bout of rainfall as said by The Soyabean Processors association.


El Nino:

►  It refers to the unusual warming of the equatorial pacific Ocean off the coast of  northwest South America.

It influences weather events across the world. In India it suppresses Monsoons

Indian Ocean Dipole

►  It is a similar phenomenon in the Indian Ocean. But, it is relationship with Indian Monsoons is not as well established as El Nino’s.

▪       It is futile that IOD would impact Indian Monsoons. Some research even says, it is monsoons that affect IOD but not the other way around.




Self-Respect marriages

    • A 2014 ruling of the Madras High Court that held that marriages performed by advocates were not valid, and that suyamariyathaior self-respect marriages cannot be solemnised in secrecy.
    • Recently, Supreme Court observed that there is no blanket ban on advocates solemnising “self-respect marriages” under Section 7 (A) of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.

What are Self-respect marriages?

  • The Hindu Marriage (Tamil Nadu Amendment) Act, 1967 inserted a Section 7 A into the Hindu Marriage Act,1955, applicable only to TamilNadu, recognises “self-respect and secular marriages”
  • Such marriages, whether called suyamarariyathai marriage or see rthiruththa marriage or by any other name can be solemnised between two Hindus in presence of friends and relatives declaring in any language understood by parties.
    • By garlanding or
    • by putting a ring on the finger or
    • Tying of the thali.
  • However, such marriages are also required to be registered as per law.
  • It was done to radically simplify weddings by removing the need for Brahmin priests and rituals involving the holy fire or Saptapadi (seven steps).

Ilavarasan Vs Superintendent of Police:

  • The Madras high Court has rejected a habeas corpus petition filed by one Ilavarasan asking that his wife, with whom he had performed suyamariyathai, be presented before the court saying that his wife was in the illegal custody of her parents.
    • HC refused to accept the self-respect marriage certificate issued by the Advocate.
  • Supreme Court overruled the Madras HC ruling in Balakrishna Pandian V, The Superintendent of Police (2014), which held that marriages performed by the advocates are invalid.
    • Suyamariyathai cannot be solemnised in secrecy.
    • It said marriage is a celebration and the very purpose of the celebration is to publicly declare the marital status of the parties.
    • Even ThanthaiPeriyar who used to conduct such marriages publicly so that world recognises the status of the couple.
    • It held that Suyammariyathai form, will not amount to solemnisation, as required under section 7 & 7A of the Hindu Marriage Act.
  • Supreme Court in setting aside the HC’s 2014 order, the SC also relied on its 2001 ruling in Nagalingam Vs Sivagami, which said there is no blanket ban on advocates solemnising marriages under Section 7A of the Hindu Marriage (Tamil Nadu Amendment) Act.




Aditya L1

    • Having planted its feet firmly on Moon, the Indian Space research Organisation (ISRO) is headed towards the sun.

Special facts about Aditya L1:

  • It is the ISRO’s first to study the Sun.
  • It is first time that ISRO is sending back-to-back space exploration missions.
  • ISRO had started preparing for it around the time it was giving shape to Chandrayaan – I mission in 2008.
  • This Mission follows the series of Mangalyaan and Chandrayaan series of orbiters whose success was essential to validate number of technologies that could be used in future.

The Solar Missions:

  • Unlike the rush to the Moon, there have been very few missions to the Sun.There are inherent difficulties in going anywhere near the Sun.
    • The Aditya-L1 mission, for example,would be stationed at a place that is just one per cent of the distance of the Sun from the Earth, which is one of the most favoured locations to study the Sun.
  • Studying the Sun is a purely scientific endeavour,unlike the current round of Moon missions which are focused on exploring opportunities for resource utilisation and extraction, and setting up facilities for longer term stays.
  • A better understanding of explosive processes happening within the Sun can potentially result in early warning systems for solar eruptions that threaten space-based assets like communication or navigation systems.
  • The study of the Sun can give insights about the processes happening inside other stars as well.

ISRO with Aditya L1 series:

  • By joining this kind of scientific research, the ISRO is also sending out a signal that it has the technology and maturity — and also the resources and expertise — to contribute to every aspect of planetary science.
  • With Aditya-L1, the ISRO would be travelling much further in space, 1.5 million kilometres, than it did with Chandrayaan-3 whose destination was barely 4 lakh km from Earth. Of course, the Mangalyaan Orbiter went much deeper, nearly 200 million km in a different direction. For ISRO, these are only the beginnings. Many more great journeys awaits.

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