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GATT

  By: Astha Raghav.  The  General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade  ( GATT ) is a  legal agreement  between many countries, whose overall purpose was to promote international trade by reducing or eliminating trade barriers such as  tariffs  or  quotas . According to its preamble, its purpose was the "substantial reduction of tariffs and other trade barriers and the elimination of preferences, on a reciprocal and mutually advantageous basis." The GATT was first discussed during the United Nations Conference on Trade and Employment and was the outcome of the failure of negotiating governments to create the International Trade Organization (ITO). It was signed by 23 nations in Geneva on October 30th, 1947, and was applied on a provisional basis January 1st, 1948.It remained in effect until January 1st, 1995, when the World Trade Organization (WTO) was established after agreement by 123 nations in Marrakesh on April 15th, 1994, as part of the Uruguay Round Agreements. The WTO is t

A.P.J. Abdul Kalam biography

 
By: Astha Raghav 

A.P.J. Abdul Kalam , in full Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam, (born October 15, 1931, Rameswaram, India—died July 27, 2015, Shillong), Indian scientist and politician who played a leading role in the development of India's missile and nuclear weapons programs. He was president  of India from 2002 to 2007.

Kalam earned a degree in aeronautical engineering  from the Madras Institute of Technology and in 1958 joined the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). In 1969 he moved to the Indian Space Research Organization, where he was project director of the SLV-III, the first satellite launch vehicle that was both designed and produced in India. Rejoining DRDO in 1982, Kalam planned the program that produced a number of successful missiles, which helped earn him the nickname “Missile Man.” Among those successes was Agni, India’s first intermediate-range ballistic missile, which incorporated aspects of the SLV-III and was launched in 1989.

From 1992 to 1997 Kalam was scientific adviser to the defense minister, and he later served as principal scientific adviser (1999–2001) to the government with the rank of cabinet minister. His prominent role in the country's 1998 nuclear weapons tests solidified India as a nuclear power  and established Kalam as a national hero, although the tests caused great concern in the international community . In 1998 Kalam put forward a countrywide plan called Technology Vision 2020, which he described as a road map for transforming India from a less-developed to a developed society in 20 years. The plan called for, among other measures, increasing agricultural productivity, emphasizing technology as a vehicle for economic growth , and widening access to health care and education.


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