Insights Daily Current Affairs, 24 May 2017
Insights Daily Current Affairs, 24 May 2017
Paper 2 Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.
Reader titled “Raising Happy Children and Providing Safe Childhoods” released
The Ministry of Women and Child Development has developed a reader titled “Raising Happy Children and Providing Safe Childhoods”.
What you need to know about the reader?
- It provides advisory guidelines to parents, teachers and community to protect children from being involved in delinquent behavior through early detection, counselling and positive engagement.
- It draws upon basic principles laid down in the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2015 which provides a strong formal framework for dealing with children in conflict with the law throughout the criminal justice process.
- The reader draws upon good practices across the world which have proved to be successful in keeping children safe and away from delinquent behavior.
- The reader suggests a broad framework for imbibing positive skills such as conflict resolution and violence prevention to keep them protected and help them achieve their full potential.
- The reader is divided into three parts wherein part-I is for parents and what they can do to prevent violence and crimes by children, followed by part-II and III for teachers and community members respectively. Each part briefly discusses few major problems that can push children on the wrong side of law, the early signs of this, what can be done to strengthen protection or intervene to reduce risks.
Need for special attention:
Young children experience their world through their relationships with parents, teachers, peers and other caregivers. Therefore, there is a need to create a warm, loving and nurturing environment where their physical, emotional and spiritual needs are recognized and honored by their family, school and community so as to allow them to reach their full potential.
Paper 2 Topic: Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance- applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.
The government has launched the Saral Eindhan Vitaran Application (SEVA), developed in-house by Coal India Limited (CIL) for power sector consumers.
What you need to know about the app?
- SEVA is a part of ‘Digital India’ initiative, which is aimed at increasing the Consumer Connect as well as the Transparency and Accountability in Coal dispatch.
- The SEVA Dashboard provides summary of quantity of coal dispatched along with grades for the given day, month, and the latest yearly updates as well. It also provides information on rake movement including latest status of indents of rake, allotment and loading. This would help consumers making advance logistics planning.
- The app has a dedicated backend team to monitor the status of specific grievances from consumers and take action on the feedback received on the app. While much of the information on the SEVA Dashboard is available in open access, consumer specific data would be password protected.
Significance of this app:
The consumer friendly mobile app helps in tracking of coal dispatch to 118 Power Plants through Fuel Supply Agreement (FSA) of around 500 MT besides, dispatch through Special Forward E-Auction and Bridge Linkage from more than 200 dispatch points spread over eight states of the country.
By using this app the common man would be able to hold the Government accountable for the coal linkage allocations and would be able to check any pilferage or inefficiencies in coal consumption for power generation. This would, in turn, lead to rationalization of coal linkages and finally reduction in the power prices in the country. In near future, non-power sector mines would also be added in this App.
Paper 2 Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
“Ozone2Climate” Technology Roadshow
In a first, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, along with the UN Environment OzonAction’s Compliance Assistance Programme, recently organized an “Ozone2Climate” Technology Roadshow, post Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, on the sidelines of the South Asia National Ozone Officers Annual Network Meeting – 2017 in Agra. Over 200 refrigerant technicians, ozone officers, business representatives and government officials attended the Roadshow.
- The Technology Roadshow was organized for the first time as part of the annual network meeting for Ozone Officers of South Asia.
- The “Ozone2Climate Technology Roadshow” had 13 exhibitors that promoted ozone and climate-friendly alternative technologies to HCFCs and HFCs in the refrigeration and air-conditioning (RAC) sector.
- The Technology Roadshow showcased current refrigeration and air conditioning equipment designed to be more energy efficient, hence with a double benefit of saving money for consumers, and with a much lower impact on the environment.
The negotiations at Kigali were aimed at including Hydrofluoro Carbons (HFCs) in the list of chemicals under the Montreal Protocol with a view to regulate their production and consumption and phase them down over a period of time with financial assistance from the Multilateral Fund created under the Montreal Protocol.
- The Kigali amendments to the Montreal Protocol will, for the first time, incentivise improvement in energy efficiency in case of use of new refrigerant and technology. Funding for R&D and servicing sector in developing countries has also been included in the agreed solutions on finance.
- The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol is legally binding and will come into force from 1 January 2019. Under Kigali Amendment, in all 197 countries, including India have agreed to a timeline to reduce the use of HFCs by roughly 85% of their baselines by 2045.
All signatory countries have been divided into three groups with different timelines to go about reductions of HFCs. These include:
- Wealthy, developed countries, such as the United States and the European Union, will start to limit their use of HFCs within a few years and make a cut of at least 10% from 2019.
- Rapidly developing countries, including many in Latin America, will freeze their use of HFCs starting in 2024.
- Developing countries, specifically India, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq and the Gulf states, will freeze their use starting in 2028.
Paper 3 Topic: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.
Paytm Payments Bank
Paytm has finally rolled out its Payments Bank, which is an almost-complete banking solution offered by the company. The digital wallet and e-commerce service provider received the final license from RBI for the bank last week. With the launch, Paytm is transferring all wallets to the new Paytm Payments Bank.
- Under the new banking system, wallets and accounts will be two separate entities. In order to be a part of the banking system, the user will have to open a bank account with Paytm.
What is a Payments Bank?
A Payments bank is similar to any other bank except it operates on a smaller scale. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) introduced it in 2014 to increase the scope of financial inclusion to small savings account holders, low income households, small businesses, unorganised sector entities and migrant labour force.
Key facts on payment banks:
- Customers can deposit only up to Rs 1,00,000.
- Payments bank can issue ATM/debit cards but not credit cards.
- Payments and remittance services through various channels can be done.
- Customers will be able to buy insurance and mutual funds.
- Bank would not carry out lending activities.
- With this, the network of 1,54,000 post offices (including 1,30,000 rural post offices) will be offering banking services to the masses in the country.
- Payments banks are targeting migrant labourers, low income households, small businesses, and other unorganised sector entities.
- Initial capital required for a Payments bank is Rs 100 crore.
- Eligibility: Existing pre-paid payment instrument issuers, individuals, professionals, NBFCs, corporate business correspondents, telecom companies, super-market chains, real estate sector cooperatives that are owned and controlled by residents and public sector entities may apply.
- Promoter’s contribution initially must be 40% for the first 5 years. For foreign holding, it is up to 74% of paid-up capital, on a par with private banks.
- The banks must maintain CRR, minimum 75% of demand deposits in government bonds of up to one year and maximum 25% in current and fixed deposits with other scheduled commercial banks for operational purposes and liquidity management.
Sources: the hindu.
Paper 2 Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
Karnataka child marriage Bill finally gets President’s nod
President Pranab Mukherjee has given his assent to the long-pending Prohibition of Child Marriage (Karnataka amendment) Bill, 2016, giving greater powers to the police and increasing the penalty for child marriage.
What you need to know about the bill?
The amended Bill seeks to ensure zero tolerance towards child marriage, granting powers to policemen and enhancing penalties for those attending wedding ceremonies of minors. While the original legislation does not prescribe a minimum punishment for offenders, the amendment proposes rigorous imprisonment of one year. It also enables any police officer to take cognizance of the offence.
The Bill was drafted based on the recommendations of a core committee headed by Shivaraj V. Patil, former Supreme Court judge. Karnataka is among the States that record a high number of child marriages in the country (about 23% of the total, according to a recent survey).
The Bill was amended last year by the State Assembly and sent to the Centre. The Home Ministry, which acts as an administrative ministry for State Bills and legislation, after consulting other Central ministries, forwarded the Bill to the Presidential secretariat, sources in the State secretariat said. The State had been urging the Centre to pass the Bill at the earliest, in order to help it to eradicate the menace of child marriage in the next few years.
A large number of child marriage cases are reported from north Karnataka, including Dharwad, Belagavi, Bagalkot, Koppal, Raichur and Vijayapura districts.
Sources: the hindu.
Paper 1 Topic: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
Karmapa’s travel curbs to go
Urgyen Trinley Dorje, the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, may be allowed to visit any place in the country, except Sikkim, without seeking the government’s permission. The Home Ministry has moved the proposal before the Cabinet Committee on Security, a senior government official said here on Tuesday.
The move assumes significance in the wake of China’s repeated warnings over the recent Northeast visit of the Dalai Lama, who Beijing describes as a “separatist” for spearheading the Tibetan freedom movement.
The entry of all three Karmapa claimants has been banned at the Rumtek monastery in East Sikkim since 1994, following objections by some prominent teachers of the Kagyu school to recognising Dorje as the 17th Karmapa.
In 2011, the police had recovered ₹1.2 crore of unaccounted-for foreign currency, including Chinese ones, from Gyuto Tantric University and Monastery in Dharamsala. The police registered a case against the Karmapa and the then government put more restrictions on his travel.
About Karma Kagyu school:
The Karma Kagyu lineage belongs to one of the 4 main schools of Tibetan Buddhism. As a lineage of direct oral transmission it places particular emphasis on meditation and the realization of the direct experience of mind gained through the guidance of a teacher.
- The Karma Kagyu lineage has its roots in the teachings of the historical Buddha and developed into a practical way to enlightenment in India and Tibet.
- For over a 1000 years Buddhist Masters (Mahasiddhas) such as Naropa and Maitripa in India as well as the famous Tibetan Yogis Marpa and Milarepa shaped the lineage as a practical everyday practice for lay people.
Since the 12th century the Karmapas have been the heads of the Karma Kaygü lineage and responsible for the continuation of this direct transmission lineage. The present 17th Gyalwa Karmapa Thaye Dorje was born in 1983 and in 1994 he managed to flee the oppression of Tibet and came to India.
Sources: the hindu.
Facts for Prelims:
Google Unleashes AlphaGo in China:
- AlphaGo is a narrow AI, computer program developed by Alphabet Inc.’s Google DeepMind in London to play the board game Go. In October 2015, it became the first Computer Go program to beat a human professional Go player without handicaps on a full-sized 19×19 board.
- AlphaGo’s algorithm uses a Monte Carlo tree search to find its moves based on knowledge previously “learned” by machine learning, specifically by an artificial neural network (a deep learning method) by extensive training, both from human and computer play.