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INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 18 September 2020

InstaLinks help you think beyond the issue but relevant to the issue from UPSC prelims and Mains exam point of view. These linkages provided in this ‘hint’ format help you frame possible questions in your mind that might arise(or an examiner might imagine) from each current event. InstaLinks also connect every issue to their static or theoretical background. This helps you study a topic holistically and add new dimensions to every current event to help you think analytically.

Current affairs 17 September

Table of Contents:

GS Paper 1:

1. In News- Dhrupad.

 

GS Paper 2:

1. National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).

2. Gilgit-Baltistan.

3. Told to allow Queen’s Counsel.

4. U. S. keen on finalising BECA at 2+2 dialogue.

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. Tidal Disruption Events.

2. What is an air bubble?

3. World Patients safety day.

 


GS Paper  : 1


 

Topics Covered: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

In News- Dhrupad:


Dhrupad is the most ancient style of Hindustani classical music that has survived until today in its original form.

  • The nature of Dhrupad music is spiritual. It does not seek to entertain, but to induce feelings of peace and spirituality in the listener.
  • It is primarily a form of worship, in which offerings are made to the divine through sound or Nada.
  • Dhrupad was initially sung only in the temples, the singer facing the Lord. From this early chanting, Dhrupad evolved into a sophisticated classical form of music.

 Characteristics:

  • It lays emphasis on maintaining purity of the Raga.
  • The language of Dhrupad changed from Sanskrit to Brij Bhasha sometime between the 12th and the 16th century.

Genesis:

It is a form of devotional music that traces its origin to the ancient text of SamVeda. The SAM VEDA was chanted with the help of melody and rhythm called Samgana. Gradually this developed into other vocal style called ‘Chhanda’ and ‘Prabandha’ with introduction of verse and meter. The fusion of these two elements led to the emergence of Dhrupad.

Dhrupad during mediaeval times:

In medieval India, Dhrupad had mainly thrived under the patronage of Mughal and Rajput kings. Later it declined with the shift of interest in Khayal.

Performance:

Performance of Dhrupad is done in two parts viz. the Alap and Bandish. In the Alap, the singer uses syllables from Sanskrit Mantra which add texture to the notes. The Raga is slowly and methodically developed in a meditative mode.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Classification of Indian Classical music.
  2. What is Dhrupad?
  3. Its evolution.
  4. Key features.
  5. Differences between Dhrupad and Khayal.

Mains Link:

Write a note on Indian Classical Music and its evolution.

Sources: the Hindu.

 


GS Paper  : 2


 

Topics Covered: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

National Human Rights Commission (NHRC):


Why in News?

NHRC has ordered the Assam government to pay ₹1 lakh to a 48-year-old man who was thrashed more than a year ago in Biswanath district for selling cooked beef at his tea stall at a weekly market.

Relevance of this article for UPSC exam:

From this article, we can understand whether NHRC has powers to recommend payment of compensation or not.

About National Human Rights Commission (NHRC):

It is a statutory body established on 12th October, 1993 under the Protection of Human Rights Act (PHRA), 1993.

The Act also provides for the creation of the State Human Rights Commission as well.

Composition:

The chairperson is a retired chief justice of India or a judge of the Supreme Court.

They are appointed by the President on the recommendations of a six-member committee consisting of:

  1. Prime Minister (head)
  2. Speaker of the Lok Sabha
  3. Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha
  4. Leaders of the Opposition in both the Houses of Parliament
  5. Union Home Minister.

Term and removal:

They hold office for a term of three years or until they attain the age of 70 years, whichever is earlier.

The President can remove them from the office under specific circumstances.

NHRC

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. NHRC- composition.
  2. Functions 
  3. Selection of chairman and members.
  4. Term and removal.
  5. Key changes introduced by the Protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Bill, 2019.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

Gilgit-Baltistan:


Context:

Pakistan has decided to elevate Gilgit-Baltistan’s status to that of a full-fledged province.

  • However, India has clearly conveyed to Pakistan that the entire union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, including the areas of Gilgit and Baltistan, are an integral part of the country by virtue of its fully legal and irrevocable accession.

What’s the issue?

Gilgit-Baltistan has functioned as a “provincial autonomous region” since 2009.

It is controlled by Pakistan.

Besides, in a recent order, the Pakistan Supreme Court also allowed the amendment to the Government of Gilgit-Baltistan Order of 2018 to conduct the general elections in the region.

Where is Gilgit Baltistan located?

It borders China in the North, Afghanistan in the west and Kashmir in the south east.

It shares a geographical boundary with Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, and India considers it as part of the undivided Jammu and Kashmir, while Pakistan sees it as a separate from PoK.

It has a regional Assembly and an elected Chief Minister.

Key points:

  • China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) passes through this region.
  • The region is home to five of the “eight-thousanders” and to more than fifty peaks above 7,000 metres (23,000 ft).
  • Three of the world’s longest glaciers outside the polar regions are found in Gilgit-Baltistan.

How Pakistan took over it?

  • The British sold it, along with the rest of Jammu and Kashmir, to the Dogra ruler of Jammu, Gulab Singh, after defeating the Sikh army in 1846, but retained controlled over the area through a lease extracted from the Maharaja.
  • This lease was last renewed in 1935. In 1947, a British army officer of the rank of Colonel imprisoned Maharaja Hari Singh’s governor in the region, and handed over the area for accession to Pakistan.

Impediments ahead:

  • Gilgit- Baltistan is part of J&K and any such move would seriously damage Pakistan’s Kashmir case. Two UN resolutions of August 13, 1948 and January 5, 1949 clearly established a link between GB and the Kashmir issue.
  • Making the region its fifth province would thus violate the Karachi Agreement — perhaps the only instrument that provides doubtful legal authority to Pakistan’s administration of GB — as well as the UN resolutions that would damage its position on the Kashmir issue.
  • Any such move would also be violative of the 1963 Pak-China Boundary Agreement that calls for the sovereign authority to reopen negotiations with China “after the settlement of the Kashmir dispute between Pakistan and India” and of the 1972 Simla Agreement that mentions that “neither side shall unilaterally alter the situation”.

baltistan

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Gilgit- Baltistan- Location, neighbours and important rivers flowing through.
  2. What is Karachi Agreement related to?
  3. The 1963 Pak- China Boundary Agreement.
  4. 1972 Simla Agreement.
  5. About PoK and CPEC.

Mains Link:

Where is Gilgit- Baltistan? How it came under the control of Pakistan? Discuss.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

Pak. told to allow Queen’s Counsel:


Context:

After being stuck on the issue of who will represent Kulbhushan Jadhav in the civilian court in Pakistan, India has invoked the Commonwealth grounds to end the debate over the appointment of his counsel.

  • India has called for the appointment of an Indian lawyer or a Queen’s Counsel for the death row prisoner, Kulbhushan Jadhav, so that he receives a fair trial in his death sentence review.

Background:

India’s suggestion comes against the backdrop of negotiations between the two sides to ensure a free and fair trial.

  • The International Court of Justice had asked Pakistan to ensure a fair review of the death sentence, but India says Pakistan has not provided “unimpeded” access to him till now.

Who is a Queen’s Counsel?

Queen’s Counsel is a barrister or advocate, appointed Counsel to the UK Crown on the recommendation of the Lord Chancellor.

Queen’s counsels are recognised in almost all courts around the world.

A Queen’s Counsel is appointed from within the legal profession on the basis of merit rather than the level of experience.

Kulbhushan_Jadhav

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About ICJ.
  2. Differences between the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice.
  3. Who is a Queen’s Counsel?
  4. Key Functions.
  5. What are commonwealth countries?

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

U.S. keen on finalising BECA at 2+2 dialogue:


Context:

The U.S. is expecting India to sign the last foundational agreement, Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement for Geo-Spatial cooperation (BECA), at the next India-U.S. 2+2 ministerial dialogue likely to held in October end.

Foundational agreements between India and the US:

So far, India has signed three foundational agreements:

  1. The Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA).
  2. The Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA).
  3. The General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) was signed a long time ago. An extension to the GSOMIA, the Industrial Security Annex (ISA), was signed at the last 2+2 dialogue.

What is BECA?

This agreement would facilitate exchange of geospatial information between India and United States for both military and civilian use.

Significance and benefits for India from BECA:

BECA will allow India to use US expertise on geospatial intelligence and to enhance military accuracy of automated hardware systems and weapons like cruise, ballistic missiles and drones.

What is 2+2 Dialogue?

The 2+2 dialogue is the highest-level institutional mechanism between India and USA that brings together the perspectives of the two countries on foreign policy, defence and strategic issues.

The new dialogue format was agreed to between the India and the US during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Washington D.C. in June, 2017.

  • The dialogue mechanism includes defence and foreign ministers of the two countries.
  • It replaced India-U.S. Strategic and Commercial Dialogue for trade and commercial issues.

Foundational_agreement

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What are foundational agreements?
  2. About BECA.
  3. Agreements signed by India and the US.
  4. What is 2+2 Dialogue?
  5. Countries having 2+2 dialogue mechanism with India.

Sources: the Hindu.

 


Facts for Prelims


What are Tidal disruption events (TDE)?

tde

Astronomers study Blackholes by watching for their effects on nearby stars and gas. Stars are disrupted when the black hole’s tidal gravity exceeds the star’s self-gravity, and this phenomenon is called tidal disruption events (TDE).

  • The tidal disruption events are crucial and useful phenomena to detect and predict the mass of supermassive black holes in quiescent galaxies.

What is an air bubble?

air_bubble

  • An air bubble is essentially a temporary arrangement between two countries to restart commercial flight services at a time when regular international flights are suspended due to COVID-19.
  • Under the arrangement, airlines from both countries are allowed to operate, unlike Mission Vande Bharat where only Indian air carriers were allowed to operate flights.

Why in News?

India has entered into Air Bubble agreements with 10 countries viz. USA, Canada, France, Germany, UK, Maldives, UAE, Qatar, Afghanistan and Bahrain, till 13.09.2020.

World Patient Safety Day- September 17:

  • Initiated by the World Health Organisation.
  • First observed in 2019.
  • It calls for global solidarity and concerted action by all countries and international partners to improve patient safety.
  • 2020 theme: Health Worker Safety: A Priority for Patient Safety.

 


Facts for Prelims


Special Benches to hear cases against legislators:

The Supreme Court has asked the Chief Justices of High Courts to head Special Benches and immediately hear long-pending criminal cases against sitting and former legislators.

What’s the issue?

  • Over 4,400 criminal trials have been held up, some for decades, because the powerful MPs and MLAs had approached the High Courts and got an interim stay.
  • Some date back nearly 40 years. Most are stuck at the stage of framing of criminal charges.
  • There are over 2,500 criminal cases against sitting legislators alone.

For details on this issue, please go through:

https://www.insightsonindia.com/2020/09/10/criminalisation-of-politics/.


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