- India imports Helium
- Committee to popularize Anangpal II legacy
- Milan – 2T Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGM)
- Three roads near China border in Ladakh
India imports Helium
Context: India imports helium for its needs, and with the U.S. appearing set to cut off exports of helium since 2021
- The U.S. became the most important exporter of helium across the world. It was soon realised that U.S. was also the biggest store house of helium.
- The U.S., now, is planning to switch off export of helium from 2021. Qatar is a possible exporter but acute political and diplomatic wrangles have made Qatar unreliable.
- Helium is colourless, odourless, tasteless, inert and a noble gas.
- Yet, it finds many applications, mainly in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, in rockets and in nuclear reactors.
- Dutch physicist Kamerlingh Onnes liquefied Helium by cooling the gas to -270 degrees Celsius.
- India’s Rajmahal volcanic basin in Jharkhand is the store house of helium trapped for billions of years. At present, India is mapping the Rajmahal basin extensively for future exploration and harnessing of helium.
Committee to popularize Anangpal II legacy
Context: Recently government formed a committee to popularise the legacy of 11th-century Tomar king, Anangpal II.
- Anangpal II, popularly known as AnangpalTomar.
- He belonged to the Tomar dynasty that ruled parts of present-day Delhi and Haryana between the 8th and 12th centuries.
- Anangpal II is credited to have established and populated Delhi during his reign in the 11th century.
- Anangpal II was instrumental in populating Indraprastha and giving it its present name, Delhi. It was he who built Lal Kot fort and AnangtalBaoli.
- AnangpalTomar II was succeeded by his grandson Prithviraj Chauhan, who was defeated by the Ghurid forces in the Battle of Tarain (present-day Haryana) after which the Delhi Sultanate was established in 1192.
Milan – 2TAnti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGM)
- The Milan-2T is a Tandem Warhead ATGM with the range of 1,850 metres.
- The tandem warheads comprise a forward charge and a rear charge separated by a blast shield.
- It is produced by Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) under license from MBDA Missile Systems, France.
- It can be fired from ground as well as vehicle-based launchers.
- It can be deployed in anti-tank role for both offensive and defensive tasks.
Anti-Tank Guided Missiles
- Anti-Tank missiles (ATMs) are guided missiles designed primarily to destroy or damage heavily armoured vehicles and tanks. They’re guided missiles that use various guiding algorithms like wire-guided missiles, laser guide guided missiles, etc.
Three roads near China border in Ladakh
Context: The Central Public Works Department (CPWD) has floated tenders worth a total of ₹212.99 crore this month for laying and maintenance of three high-altitude roads near the India-China border in Ladakh.
- While the projects are titled as roads “to Indo-China Border” from the Indo-Tibetan Border Police bases at Shilung La, Nyakmikle and Hena, the three tender documents said: “The work is situated in Leh District of U.T. of Ladakh near International Border.”
- All the three roads would be single lane projects as per the relevant specifications of National Highways, according to the documents.
India-China Border Roads
- India-China Border Roads (ICBR) project is a Government of India project which aims to develop the infrastructure along the Sino-Indian border by constructing “strategic roads”.
- Several entities are responsible for constructing ICBR, including Border Roads Organisation (BRO) which handles the bulk of the ICBR road construction work, NHAI, MoDNER, Central Public Works Department (CPWD), National Projects Construction Corporation (NPCC), PWDs of respective states and others.
- China in comparison, has significantly upgraded infrastructure in the Tibetan Autonomous Region with five airbases, an extensive rail network and more than 58,000 km of roads.
- The BRO is responsible for constructing 105 border roads, including 73 ICBR roads in Phase-1 to be completed by December 2020 and 32 ICBR roads in Phase-2.
- The BRO is responsible for the road network, of which 67% are assigned to ICBR roads.
- Out of 73 ICBRs in Phase-1, less than 50% were complete by 2018, subsequently with additional funds the speed of construction increased.
- Some of the important projects include – ○ The already completed Darbuk-Shayok-Daulat Beg Oldie (DS-DBO) road and also the Atal Tunnel (Rhotang tunnel); and ○ In the northeast the under construction Sela Tunnel and an under-construction tunnel under the Brahmaputra river with Indian Railways.