INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 02 January 2020
Table of Contents:
GS Paper 1:
GS Paper 2:
GS Paper 3:
Facts for Prelims:
1. Mani app.
2. Senna Spectabilis.
GS Paper : 1
Topics Covered: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
What to study?
For Prelims and Mains: Guru Gobind Singh- key contributions.
Context: The birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh was celebrated on January 2nd this year.
About Guru Gobind Singh:
- He was the 10th Sikh guru.
- He was born at Patna, Bihar, India, on December 22, 1666. His birthday sometimes falls either in December or January or even both months in the Gregorian calendar. The annual celebration of the Guru’s birthday is based on the Nanakshahi calendar.
- He became the Sikh guru at the age of nine, following the demise of father, Guru Tegh Bahadur, the ninth Sikh Guru.
- He is known for his significant contributions to the Sikh religion, including the introduction of the turban to cover hair.
- He also founded the principles of Khalsa or the Five ‘K’s.
- He is also responsible to establish the highest order in the Sikh community.
- Followers of the Sikh faith religiously follow the morals and codes of discipline set up by Guru Gobind Singh.
- He fought against the Mughals later in battle of Muktsar in 1705.
- He was assassinated in 1708.
- He named Guru Granth Sahib, the religious text of the Khalsas and the Sikhs, as the next Guru of the two communities.
Sources: the Hindu.
GS Paper : 2
Topics Covered: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
What to study?
For Prelims: Key features of the Yojana.
For Mains: Significance and challenges present and ways to address them.
Context: Out of the total 790, only 252 Members of Parliament (MPs) have adopted gram panchayats under phase-4 of Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY).
Since the launch of the scheme, only 1,753 gram panchayats have been selected across four phases, way below the expected figure.
About Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana:
Launched in 2014, it is a village development project under which each Member of Parliament will take the responsibility of developing physical and institutional infrastructure in three villages by 2019.
The goal is to develop three Adarsh Grams or model villages by March 2019, of which one would be achieved by 2016. Thereafter, five such Adarsh Grams (one per year) will be selected and developed by 2024.
The Project was launched on the occasion of birth anniversary of Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan.
- The scheme will be implemented through a village development plan that would be prepared for every identified gram panchayat with special focus on enabling every poor household to come out of poverty.
- The constituency fund, MPLADS, would be available to fill critical financing gaps.
- The planning process in each village will be a participatory exercise coordinated by the District Collector. The MP will play an active facilitating role in this exercise.
- Adoption and adaptation of technology and introduction of innovations are critical to this programme. This will include use of space application and remote sensing for planning, mobile based technology for monitoring, agriculture technology for increasing productivity etc.
- At the state level there will be an Empowered Committee headed by the Chief Secretary consisting of the relevant Departments and including experts, as required with at least two Civil Society representatives.
- The district Collector will be the nodal officer for implementing the SAGY. He will conduct a monthly review meeting with representatives of the participating Line Departments. The Members of Parliament concerned will chair the review meetings.
- SAGY gives focus to community participation. Social mobilization of village community can trigger a chain of other development activities in the village.
Sources: The Hindu.
Topics Covered: Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.
What to study?
For Prelims and Mains: Registration of political parties and provisions governing them, benefits of registration, about the new launch.
What is it?
It is a new online tracking system for political parties launched recently by the Election Commission of India.
- It will allow them to track their registration applications submitted to the poll panel on a real-time basis.
- It will apply for parties registering from January 1, 2020.
How it works?
It will enable those applying for the party registration from January 1 to track the progress of their application using the system. The users will get status updates through SMS and e-mail.
Registration of political parties:
Registration of Political parties is governed by the provisions of Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
A party seeking registration under the said Section with the Commission has to submit an application to the Commission within a period of 30 days following the date of its formation as per guidelines prescribed by the Election Commission of India in exercise of the powers conferred by Article 324 of the Commission of India and Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
Sources: the Hindu.
Topics Covered: India and its neighbourhood- relations. Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
What to study?
For Prelims and Mains: The agreement, its significance and the need.
Context: Both India and Pakistan have exchanged their list of nuclear installations. The exchange was in accordance with the Agreement on Prohibition of Attacks against Nuclear Installations and Facilities between Pakistan and India.
The exchange is done each year on January 1, under the Agreement on the Prohibition of Attack against Nuclear Installations and Facilities, also referred to as the Non-Nuclear Aggression Agreement.
About the Agreement on the Prohibition of Attack against Nuclear Installations:
The agreement, which was signed on December 31, 1988, and entered into force on January 27, 1991, provides that the two countries inform each other of nuclear installations and facilities to be covered under the pact on the first of January of every calendar year.
Significance of the agreement:
- The need for the agreement had been felt against the backdrop of Israel’s 1981 bombing of Iraq’s Osirak reactor near Baghdad. The strike, carried out by Israeli fighter jets over hostile airspace, had set Iraq’s nuclear weapons programme significantly.
- The agreement had also come at a time of deep anxiety for Pakistan. Islamabad had been rattled by the memory of the 1972 defeat which dismembered the country, and military developments in India, such as Operation Brasstacks in 1987, which was a wargame exercise to prepare for deep strike offensive capabilities. Pakistan had at the time responded by putting at its nuclear installations and assets on ‘high alert’.
Sources: the hindu.
GS Paper : 3
Topics Covered: Conservation related issues.
What to study?
For Prelims and Mains: Observations made by the court and significance of these observations.
Context: Recently, the Supreme Court of India held that the Government has no right to transfer “invaluable” community resources like village water ponds to powerful people and industrialists for commercialisation of the property.
What’s the issue?
The judgment came on a plea against the transfer of village ponds’ sites of Saini Village in the National Capital Region to some private industrialists by the Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority.
Observations made by the Court:
- Protection of such village commons is essential to safeguard the fundamental right guaranteed by Article 21 of our Constitution.
- These common areas are the lifeline of village communities, and often sustain various chores and provide resources necessary for life.
- The State cannot divest villagers of their existing source of water even if it promises to provide them an alternative site where the water body can be replicated. Such an attitude would display “a mechanical application of environmental protection.”
- There is no guarantee that the adverse effect of destroying the existing water body would be offset and people would be compelled to travel miles to access the alternative site.
Since time immemorial, certain common lands had vested in village communities for collective benefit. Such protections, however, remained on paper. Since Independence, powerful people and a corrupt system had appropriated these lands for personal aggrandisement.
Sources: the Hindu.
Topics Covered: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
What to study?
For Prelims: Particulars of the programme.
For Mains: Challenges involved.
Context: The ISRO Chairman announced in a press briefing that four astronauts have been selected for the country’s first manned mission to space, called Gaganyaan.
Indian Human Space Flight Programme:
ISRO aims to launch its maiden Human Space Mission, Gaganyaan before the 75th anniversary of India’s independence in 2022.
Objectives of the Mission:
- Enhancement of science and technology levels in the country
- A national project involving several institutes, academia and industry
- Improvement of industrial growth
- Inspiring youth
- Development of technology for social benefits
- Improving international collaboration
Relevance of a Manned Space Mission for India:
Boost to industries: The Indian industry will find large opportunities through participation in the highly demanding Space missions. Gaganyaan Mission is expected will source nearly 60% of its equipment from the Indian private sector.
Employment: According to the ISRO chief, the Gaganyaan mission would create 15,000 new employment opportunities, 13,000 of them in private industry and the space organisation would need an additional manpower of 900.
Technological development: Human Space flights are frontier field in the science and technology. The challenges the Human Space Flights provide to India, and the benefits accruing from taking up those missions will be very high and will lead to further thrust for technological developments in India
Spurs research and development: It will boost good research and technology development. With a large number of researchers with proper equipment involved, HSF will thrust significant research in areas such as materials processing, astro-biology, resources mining, planetary chemistry, planetary orbital calculus and many other areas
Motivation: Human space flight will provide that inspiration to the youth and also the national public mainstream. It would inspire young generation into notable achievements and enable them to play their legitimate role in challenging future activities
Prestige: India will be the fourth country to launch human space mission. The Gaganyaan will not only bring about prestige to the nation but also establish India’s role as a key player in the space industry.
Challenges for astronauts:
- The astronauts will have to adapt to the change in gravitational field. The change in gravity affects hand-eye and head-eye coordination. Bones may lose minerals adding to the risk of osteoporosis related fractures.
- Lack of exercise and improper diet make them lose muscle strength and cause develop vision problems.
- Once they are in space, astronauts will receive over 10 times more radiation than what people are subjected to on earth. It can cause cancer, nervous system damage and trigger nausea, vomiting, and anorexia and fatigue. Without pressure, human blood heats up.
- Despite the training, behavioural issues may crop up due to isolation leading to depression, fatigue, sleep disorders and psychiatric disorders.
Facts for Prelims:
Context: RBI launches mobile app MANI for visually challenged to identify currency notes.
- The application also works offline once installed.
- The application can scan the currency notes using the camera of the mobile phone.
- It also gives audio output in Hindi and English.
- It is a deciduous tree native to tropical areas of America.
- It grows up to 15 to 20 metres in a short period of time and distributes thousands of seeds after flowering.
- It is an invasive species.
- Concerns: The thick foliage of the tree arrests the growth of other indigenous tree and grass species. Thus, it causes food shortage for the wildlife population, especially herbivores. It also adversely affect the germination and growth of the native species.
- It is categorised as ‘Least Concern’ under IUCN Red List.
Why in News? The Kerala Government is planning to arrest the rampant growth of Senna spectabilis, in the forest areas of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve (NBR), including the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary.
Sangita Kalanidhi award:
Context: S.Sowmya has been conferred with Sangita Kalanidhi Award.
About the award:
Sangita Kalanidhi Award was instituted by the Music Academy, Chennai.
It is the title awarded yearly to a Carnatic Musician.