Non-Aligned Movement (NAM)

The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) was officially established in 1961, at the Belgrade Summit, hosted by President Josip Broz Tito, following the discussions that were triggered during the Afro-Asian Conference of 1955, hosted by President Sukarno, and which resulted in the adoption of the Bandung Principles that up to date still serve as the purposes and objectives of the policy of non-alignment, and which have governed relations between big and small nations. The first summit of the NAM was held in Belgrade, now the capital of Serbia, in 1961, with the participation of 29 countries. It is now a forum of 120 developing states that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. There are also 17 countries and 10 International Organizations that hold an Observer status. After the United Nations, it is the largest grouping of states worldwide. The following are considered the founding fathers and historic leaders of the Movement: Joseph Broz Tito (President of Yugoslavia), Gamal Abdel Nasser (President of Egypt), Jawaharlal Nehru (Prime Minister of India), Sukarno (President of Indonesia), and Kwame Nkrumah (President of Ghana), who decided to declare it as a Movement, with a view to avoid the bureaucratic implications of an International Organization. Unlike the United Nations (UN) or the Organization of American States, the Non-Aligned Movement has no formal constitution or permanent secretariat. All members of the Non-Aligned Movement have equal weight within its organization. The movement’s positions are reached by consensus in the Summit Conference of Heads of State or Government, which, by convention, convenes every three years. The administration of the organization is the responsibility of the country holding the chair, a position that rotates at every summit.


Why does our voice change with helium inhalation?1

Our voice has unique traits much like our fingerprints. Each person’s voice is decided by various factors such as lips, tongue, mouth, nasal passages, throat, and the air we breathe. Our larynx, which contains our vocal cords, is called our voice box and it contains two folded mucous membranes that vibrate when air passes between them. These vibrations travel upwards through our throat, nasal passages, mouth, tongue and lips to finally produce our unique voice. The regular air we breathe in is primarily made up of nitrogen and oxygen. But Helium is much lighter than these two gases, which is why it is used for floating balloons. Since helium has such low density, it travels twice as fast through our vocal cords, throat and nasal passage, giving our voice a weirdly funny tone. The squeaky voice effect lasts only as long as there is helium around your vocal cords. It goes away when normal air returns in your throat. However, even though inhaling just a couple of breaths could be fine, a lot of helium intake could be dangerous. Breathing helium means you are not getting oxygen. If you continuously inhale helium, it will cause asphyxiation within a few minutes.

 How satellites will help solve the climate crisis2

For more than three decades, space agencies have been observing Earth from space and monitoring weather patterns and the global climate. The most comprehensive European earth observation program, Copernicus, includes a satellite fleet operated by ESA. Its Sentinel satellites are monitoring Earth’s environment, including CO2 levels in the atmosphere, rising sea levels, floods, earthquakes, and rising global temperatures. However, one of the upcoming satellite missions, called the Environmental Mapping and Analysis Program (EnMap), is promising an even greater potential when it comes to observing Earth from above. Developed by the German satellite manufacturer OHB , the mission is managed by the German Aerospace Center (DLR). EnMap uses a high-resolution hyperspectral sensor technology to monitor Earth’s ecosystem. It’s designed to serve as a successor to the current multispectral technology that has far lower resolution, and limited possibilities in capturing images. The new satellite captures much more than what is visible to the naked eye. Satellite imagery also contains physical evidence about minerals and other materials on the surface, and enables scientists to draw conclusions about any potential change that may have occurred. For example, if the ocean’s surface contains microplastics, a hyperspectral satellite can detect evidence of existing polymer molecules by capturing the data contained in the reflected sunlight.

On March 20, the Supreme Court declared that the rule “falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus” (false in one thing, false in everything) would be an integral part of jurisprudence in criminal cases and it would be followed and applied by all courts in the country in letter and spirit.

The Latin rule held that a witness who testified falsely about one matter was not credible to testify about any matter because “the presumption that the witness will declare the truth ceases as soon as it manifestly appears that he is capable of perjury” and that “faith in a witness’ testimony cannot be partial or fractional”. Currently, the country’s courts are following the same principle.

Why is ice slippery in nature?

It happens due to a film of water which is generated by friction, one that is far thinner than expected and much more viscous than usual water through its resemblance to the ‘snow cones’ of crushed ice we drink during the summer. The properties of this thin layer of water had never been measured before: its thickness remained largely unknown, while its properties, and even its very existence, were the subject of debate. What’s more, since liquid water is known to be a poor lubricant, how could this liquid film reduce friction and make ice slippery? To solve this paradox, researchers developed a device equipped with a tuning fork that can “hear” the forces at work during ice gliding with remarkable precision. Thanks to this unique device, the scientists were able to clearly demonstrate for the first time that friction does indeed generate a film of liquid water. Even more unexpectedly, this film is not at all “simple water,” but consists of water that is as viscous as oil, with complex visco-elastic properties. The mystery of sliding on ice can therefore be found in the “viscous” nature of this film of water.

Kayla Mueller

The stealth US military operation which resulted in the death of the ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was named after Kayla Mueller, a 26 year old former humanitarian aid worker from Prescott, Arizona, travelled to Turkey in 2012 after her graduation and then crossed the border into Syria, on a mission to help those fleeing the civil war in the country. She was leaving a hospital run by the medical charity Doctors Without Borders in the Syrian city of Aleppo when she was kidnapped in August 2013.. In February 2015, ISIS claimed that Mueller was killed when a Jordanian fighter plane bombed the building in which she was being held.12

What is Ecosystem?

An ecosystem by definition includes communities of organisms living in a particular space and their interactions with the environment in which they live by maintaining a balance amongst themselves and the environmental components. Thus ecosystem is the harmonious existence of balance between the living and non-living components. Ecosystems can be natural like forest, land, pond and artificial or man made such as aquaria, dams, sanctuaries, zoos. Plants, the primary producers, trap the sun’s energy and synthesize food through photosynthesis. The consumers including insects, humans and other animals are dependent on the producers for their food (energy) directly or indirectly. Finally, all the components of biota in due course of time perish and their bodies will be decomposed by microbes and the carbon and nitrogen they contain will be recycled into the environment. In the case of the wall, light attracts insects, and they get trapped in the spider’s web forming the food for the spider as well as the lizards. There is no trapping of energy by the producers. The insects feed on the plants existing in the environment external to the wall and there is no recycling of the nutrients from the excreta or other things to the wall as it happens in other ecosystems. Hence such a wall cannot be called an ecosystem by itself. But the different organisms definitely form the links of food chain and form a part of a bigger ecosystem.7

Why we drink fluids after donating blood?

Blood is composed of the blood cells, namely, the red blood corpuscles (RBCS), the white blood corpuscles (WBCs) and the platelets, suspended in a clear straw-coloured fluid called plasma. The plasma contains proteins, minerals, glucose, to name a few. Plasma contributes to 55% of the blood’s volume, while 40-45% is made up of cells. Of this plasma, almost 90-95% is water. Every 100 ml of blood donated contains almost 50 ml of water. An average blood donation is either 350 or 450 ml. Half of this volume is water. This is why donors are requested to drink plenty of fluids after a blood donation, so that at least the fluid compartment’s loss in the body is compensated for.3

What happens to the dust we breathe in?

As we breathe in dust-laden air our respiratory system starts its filtering and expulsion mechanism from the nose itself. The small hairs present in our nose act as filters stopping bigger dust particles and smaller dust particles will be expelled by sneezing. The dust and particles adhering to dust will be washed away by the watery mucous that is secreted by the nasal mucosal layer. From here the dust that is smaller in particle size reaches bronchi and branchioles through wind pipe, trachaea and will be expelled in the form of mucous secreted by the cells lining these air passages. The dust surrounded by the mucus will be pushed upwards with the help of cilia present in the bronchioles and bronchi and comes out in cough, spit from the throat. Still smaller particles of dust might reach the alveoli (where exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place). Here macrophages take care of the defense mechanism by surrounding the minute dust particles. As there are no cilia in this region, this dust can only come out in the form of spit or it will be sent out through the digestive system. Dust can be laden with inorganics like silica dust, carbon (soot) or organic dyes, pigments or biological materials such as spores, bacteria, viruses, pollen and others, This can be injurious to our lungs.22

Different Instruments Used In Geography

Barometer: Barometer is used to measure atmospheric pressure. It is also known as Torriceli’s Tube after Torricelli who invented this instrument

Wind vane/ weather cock: It is an instrument for observing the direction of the wind

Rain gauge/Udometer/Pluviometer/Fluviograph: It is the instrument used to measure the amount of liquid precipitation over a set period

Snow gauge: This is identical to the Rain gauge but unlike the rain gauge, the snow gauge measures solid precipitation

Anemometer: An anemometer is a device used to measure wind speed. It helps us know how fast wind is moving at a given time

Hydrometer: Hydrometer measure the relative density or the specific gravity of liquids which is the ratio of the density of liquid to the ratio of the water density

Hygrometer: It is an instrument used to measure the relative humidity

Thermometer: It is an instrument used for measuring temperature

Seismograph: Mainly used for measuring movement caused by earthquake

What is eco-anxiety?33

The feeling of being overwhelmed by the challenges of climate change and the fear about the state of the environment is called eco-anxiety. It is the helplessness that makes us see ourselves as just one insignificant entity on the planet, unable to reverse the crisis. It is also the sense that no matter how hard we work, nothing will ever be enough. We know the deteriorating climate is affecting our health but we do not know how we can stop it. To feel powerless against a supposedly impending doom shoots up stress levels and causes anxiety. In 2017, the American Psychological Association referred to the condition as eco-anxiety.

What is a hemisphere?

A hemisphere is half of the Earth. The Earth can actually be divided into hemispheres in two ways: by the equator, and by the Prime Meridian (through Greenwich, England) at 0 degrees longitude and another meridian at 180 degrees longitude (near the location of the International Dateline in the western Pacific Ocean). The equator divides the Earth into northern and southern hemispheres. There are seasonal differences between the northern and southern hemispheres but there is no such difference between the eastern and western hemispheres. Zero and 180 degrees longitude divide the Earth into the eastern (most of Europe, Africa, Australia, and Asia) and western (the Americas) hemispheres.

What are the Arctic and Antarctic Circles?

The circles are imaginary lines that surround the north and south poles at 66.5 degrees latitude. The Arctic Circle is a line of latitude at 66.5 degrees north of the equator and the Antarctic Circle is a line of latitude at 66.5 degrees south. Areas north of the Arctic Circle are dark for 24 hours near December 21 and areas south of the Antarctic Circle are dark for 24 hours near June 21. Almost all of the continent of Antarctica is located to the south of the Antarctic Circle.

What are the deepest points in the oceans?


Lying deep below the Pacific Ocean, about 200 miles (322 kilometers) south of the island of Guam, is the Marianas Trench (also known as the Mariana Trench), which is 1,554 miles (2,550 kilometers) long and 44 miles (71 kilometers) wide. The deepest point of the Marianas Trench is 36,198 feet (11,033 meters). In the Atlantic Ocean, the Puerto Rico Trench is 28,374 feet (8,648 meters) below the surface. In the Arctic Ocean, the Eurasia Basin is 17,881 feet (5,450 meters) deep. The Java Trench in the Indian Ocean is 23,376 feet (7,125 meters) deep. Another deep point of note in the Pacific Ocean is Monterey Canyon off the coast of northern California. It is about 95 miles (153 kilometers) long and 11,800 feet (3,600 meters) deep. The cold waters generated in the trench create a perfect environment rich in foods that support a diverse range of wildlife. In comparison to all of these ocean canyons, the most famous land canyon—the Grand Canyon in Arizona—is 277 miles (446 kilometers) long and 6,000 feet (1,829 meters) deep. The world’s ocean canyons are much more impressive, but most people will never see them.

What is an aerosol?

Many people, when they hear the word “aerosol,” think of a chemical aerosol spray from a can of air freshener or hair spray. The word actually applies to any solid or liquid particles suspended in air. Because they are so small, aerosols tend to float (e.g., clouds), though like everything else they are subjected to gravity, falling at a rate of about four inches (10 centimeters) every 24 hours, unless washed away more quickly by rain.

How is wind speed measured?4

Wind speed is measured with a device called an anemometer, which was an invention of English physicist Robert Hooke (1635–1703). The most commonly used type is the rotating cup anemometer, which uses three or four small cups that spin around a central pole. Modern anemometers of this sort work using electricity and magnets. As the cups spin, a reed switch within the central pole detects each time a magnet in a cup swings by. This sends out an electronic pulse that has been calibrated to calculate wind speed. The data is then transmitted to a weather station.

What is a quasar?

The term “quasar” is short for “quasi-stellar radio source.” The term came into general usage in the 1960s, when astronomers studying cosmic radio sources noticed that many of them looked like stars on photographs. Subsequent studies showed that they were not stars at all, but rather active galactic nuclei. Nowadays, the word “quasar” is often used to mean any quasi-stellar object (QSO), whether or not it emits radio waves.

Newton’s Laws of Motion5

According to Newton’s First Law, “Everybody continues in its state of rest, or of uniform motion in a right line, unless it is compelled to change that state by forces impressed upon it.” This is also known as the law of inertia; it simply means that an object tends to stay still, or stay in motion in a straight line, unless it is pushed or pulled. This law is an expression in words of a fundamental property of motion called the conservation of linear momentum. Mathematically, the momentum of an object is its mass multiplied by its velocity.

According to Newton’s Second Law, “The change of motion is proportional to the motive force impressed and is made in the direction of the right line in which that force is impressed.” This is also known as the law of force, and it defines force as the change in the amount of motion, or momentum, of an object. Mathematically, the force of an object is its mass multiplied by its acceleration.

According to Newton’s Third Law, “To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction: or the mutual actions of two bodies upon each other are always equal and directed to contrary parts.” That means that to exert a force on an object the thing doing the exerting must experience a force of equal strength in exactly the opposite direction. This law explains, for example, why an ice skater goes backward when she pushes another skater forward.

Why was Galileo tried for heresy by the Inquisition?

The trouble began for Galileo (1564–1642) in 1613 when he published Letters on the Solar Spots, in which he advocated the Copernican system of the universe, which proposed that Earth (along with other galactic bodies) revolves around the sun. This view ran contrary to the accepted beliefs of the Roman Catholic Church, whose doctrine was based on Ptolemy’s theory that Earth was the center of the universe and that all the planets (including the sun) revolved around it. Thus, in 1616 the Pope issued a decree declaring the Copernican system to be “false and erroneous,” and Galileo was ordered not to support it.

When a new pope, Urban VIII, was coronated in 1624, Galileo traveled to Rome to make an appeal that the edict against the Copernican theory be revoked. The pope declined to do so, but he did give Galileo permission to write about the Copernican system under the condition that he not give it preference over the church-sanctioned Ptolemaic model. So, in 1632, Galileo published again: Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, however, contained unconvincing objections to the Copernican view. The church saw through it and summoned the author to Rome to stand before the Inquisition (church interrogators).

Galileo was accused of violating the original edict of 1616, put on trial for heresy, and found guilty. Though he was ordered to recant, at some point he uttered the famous statement: “And yet it moves,” a reference to the Copernican theory that Earth rotates on its axis.

Galileo was supposed to be imprisoned, but the pope commuted this sentence to house arrest at Galileo’s home near Florence, where he died blind at the age of 78.

How did the Treaty of Versailles pave the way for World War II?

In the aftermath of World War I (1914–18), Germany was severely punished: One clause in the Treaty of Versailles even stipulated that Germany take responsibility for causing the war. In addition to its territorial losses, Germany was also made to pay for an Allied military force that would occupy the west bank of the Rhine River, intended to keep Germany in check for the next 15 years. The treaty also limited the size of Germany’s military. In 1921 Germany received a bill for reparations: It owed the Allies $33 million. While the postwar German government had been made to sign the Treaty of Versailles under the threat of more fighting from the Allies, the German people nevertheless faulted their leaders for accepting such strident terms. Not only was the German government weakened, but public resentment over the Treaty of Versailles soon developed into a strong nationalist movement—led by German chancellor and führer Adolf Hitler (1889–1945).

How is “absolute zero” defined?

Absolute zero is the theoretical temperature at which all substances have zero thermal energy. Originally conceived as the temperature at which an ideal gas at constant pressure would contract to zero volume, absolute zero is of great significance in thermodynamics and is used as the fixed point for absolute temperature scales. Absolute zero is equivalent to 0 K, –459.67°F, or –273.15°C. The velocity of a substance’s molecules determines its temperature; the faster the molecules move, the more volume they require, and the higher the temperature becomes. The lowest actual temperature ever reached was two-billionth of a degree above absolute zero (2 10-9K) by a team at the Low Temperature Laboratory in the Helsinki University of Technology, Finland, in October 1989.

What are the primary colours in light?

Colour is determined by the wavelength of visible light (the distance between one crest of the light wave and the next). Those colours that blend to form “white light” are, from shortest wave length to longest: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. All these monochromatic colours, except indigo, occupy large areas of the spectrum (the entire range of wavelengths produced when a beam of electromagnetic radiation is broken up). These colours can be seen when a light beam is refracted through a prism. Some consider the primary colours to be six monochromatic colours that occupy large areas of the spectrum: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. Many physicists recognize three primary colours: red, yellow, and blue; or red, green, and blue. All other colours can be made from these by adding two primary colours in various proportions. Within the spectrum, scientists have discovered 55 distinct hues. Infra-red and ultraviolet rays at each end of the spectrum are invisible to the human eye.787

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