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11th March 2023 (7 Topics)

Short News Article

International Relations

India and Australia sign audio-visual co-production agreement

India and Australia have signed an audio-visual co-production agreement.


  • Under the agreement, private, quasi-government or governmental agencies of the two countries enter into contracts to produce films together.
  • The agreement seeks to offer filmmakers financial incentives amounting to up to 30 per cent of the expenditure incurred in the respective countries.
  • Producers’ contributions: The respective contributions of the producers of the two countries may vary from 20% to 80% of the final total cost of co-produced work.
  • The government has so far entered into 15 such agreements with various countries, including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy and Canada.

Film Facilitation Office (FFO)

  • The government established a Film Facilitation Office (FFO) to ease the process of film shooting in India. 
  • The FFO acts as a single-window platform for coordination with various states as well as bodies such as the Indian Railways and the Archaeological Survey of India among others.


Saffron Farmers Fight Climate Change with Indoor Farming

To tackle the impacts of climate change and increase saffron production, farmers in Kashmir have resorted to a new technique: indoor farming.


  • Saffron (Crocus sativus L.), commonly known as red gold, is one of the most expensive and valuable spice crops in the world market.
  • Crocus sativus, commonly known as saffron crocus or autumn crocus, is a species of flowering plant in the iris family Iridaceae. 
  • Cultivation: Saffron cultivation is simple and easy. Its harvest cycle is also 3 - 4 months, and it can reach a height of 15-20 cm.
  • Major Saffron Production states: Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh 
  • Ideal Conditions: fertile soil, good climate, a long photoperiod and a dry, moist soil.
  • Soil type required: loamy, sandy, calcareous, gravelly soil 
  • Water requirement: Less

Science & Technology

Severe scrub typhus

A team of Indian scientists has identified a significantly more effective treatment for severe scrub typhus.

Effective treatment: 

Combination of intravenous antibiotics doxycycline and azithromycin is more effective than the current monotherapy of using either drug alone.

About Scrub typhus

  • Scrub typhus is a life-threatening bacterial infection that kills thousands of people every year.
  • Also known as bush typhus, it is a disease caused by a bacteria called Orientia tsutsugamushi. 
  • Scrub typhus is spread to people through bites of infected chiggers (larval mites). 
  • The most common symptoms of scrub typhus include fever, headache, body aches, and sometimes rash. 

Science & Technology

STEM courses in India

Prime Minister Modi said the enrolment of girls in STEM in India is at 43%, more than countries like America, the U.K. and Germany. 

About STEM

  • STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
  • STEM is an educational program developed to prepare primary and secondary students for college, graduate study and careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

The International Day of Women and Girls in Science, celebrated on 11 February, is implemented by UNESCO and UN-Women.

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