Facts for Prelims – 7th and 8th April 2024

Indian Independence Committee (IIC).

  • The Berlin Committee, later known as the Indian Independence Committee  after 1915, was an organisation formed in Germany in 1914 during World War I by Indian students and political activists residing in the country.
  • The purpose of the committee was to promote the cause of Indian Independence. Initially called the Berlin–Indian Committee, the organisation was renamed the Indian Independence Committee.
  • Members of the committee included Virendranath Chattopadhyaya, Chempakaraman Pillai, Dr Jnanendra Das Gupta, and Abinash Bhattacharya.

Green Credit Programme

  • Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change during October 2023 launched the Green Credit Program (GCP) – a national initiative to address climate change, sustainability and promotion of eco-conscious practices. 
  • The green credit programme shall incentivise environmental positive actions through market-based mechanism and generate green credit, which shall be tradable and  made available for trading on a domestic market platform.
  • The green credit programme shall encourage industries, companies and other entities to meet their existing obligations or other obligations under any law for the time being in force, and encourage other persons and entities, to undertake voluntary environmental measures referred to in rule 4 by generating or buying green credit.
  • Green Credits : Any person or entity may take any measure specified under sub-rule (2) for the purposes of protection, preservation, or conservation of the environment. The measures referred to in sub-rule (1) may include the following activities, namely
    • tree plantation—to promote activities for increasing the green cover across the country;
    •  water management—to promote water conservation, water harvesting and water use efficiency or water savings, including treatment and reuse of wastewater;
    • sustainable agriculture—to promote natural and regenerative agricultural practices and land restoration to improve productivity, soil health and nutritional value of food produced;
    • waste management—to promote circularity, sustainable and improved practices for waste management, including collection, segregation, and environmentally sound management;
    • Air pollution reduction—to promote measures for reducing air pollution and other pollution abatement activities;
    • mangrove conservation and restoration—to promote measures for conservation and restoration of mangroves;
    • ecomark label development—to encourage manufacturers to obtain ecomark label for their goods and services;
    • sustainable building and infrastructure—to encourage the construction of sustainable buildings and other infrastructure using environment friendly technologies and materials.
  • The Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education, an autonomous body of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India is  the Administrator of the programme.
  • A person or entity desirous of obtaining green credit shall register the activity with the Administrator for any activity undertaken by him for grant of green credit. An application for registration shall be made to the Administrator electronically through a website established by the Central Government for that purpose. On receipt of the application, the Administrator shall cause the activity to be verified by a designated agency. The designated agency shall, after making such verification and inquiry will submit a report to the Administrator verifying the activities undertaken by the applicant. On receipt of the report, the Administrator shall grant the applicant a certificate of green credit. 


  • H5N1 is a type of influenza virus.  It is often referred to as avian influenza or bird flu.  
  • The “H5” and “N1” in its name represent specific proteins found on the surface of the virus.  
  • H5N1 is of particular concern because it can infect not only birds but also humans. 
  •  In humans, it has the potential to cause severe illness and has raised concerns about potential pandemics. Outbreaks of H5N1 in poultry flocks have led to culling and control measures to prevent its spread. 

Solar eclipse

  • A solar eclipse takes place when the Moon moves in the middle of Earth and the Sun. The Moon blocks the light of the Sun, either fully or partially, which casts a huge shadow on some parts of the world.
  • There are four different types of solar eclipses, including total solar eclipse, annual solar eclipse, partial solar eclipse, and hybrid solar eclipse.
  • When the Moon blocks the Sun entirely, the areas in the centre of the Moon’s shadow at the time witness a total solar eclipse. The sky darkens and people who are in the path of a total solar eclipse can get a glimpse of the Sun’s corona — the outer atmosphere — which is usually not visible due to the bright face of the Sun.
  • When the Moon passes in front of the Sun but is at or near the farthest point from Earth, an annular solar eclipse occurs. In this scenario, the Moon covers the Sun in such a way that only the periphery of the Sun remains visible — looking like a ring of fire.
  • A partial solar eclipse takes place when the Moon blocks just a part of the Sun, giving it a crescent shape. During both partial and annular eclipses, the regions outside the area covered by the Moon’s umbra — the middle and the darkest part of the lunar shadow — will see a partial solar eclipse. Partial solar eclipse is the most common type of solar eclipse.
  • A hybrid solar eclipse — the rarest type of solar eclipse — is witnessed when an eclipse shifts between annular and total as the shadow of the Moon moves across the globe. In this case, some parts of the world see a total solar eclipse, while others observe an annular solar eclipse.

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