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INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 21 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, current events, current gk, insights ias current affairs, upsc ias current affairs

Table of Contents:

GS Paper 1:

1. Kakatiya Dynasty.

 

GS Paper 2:

1. No-confidence motion against RS Deputy Chairman.

2. Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2020.

3. What is “universal eligibility” condition?

4. Association of World Election Bodies (A-WEB).

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. Chendamangalam saree.

2. International Day of Peace.

 


GS Paper  : 1


 

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

Kakatiya Dynasty:


Why in News?

Kakatii Devi temple built by Kakatiya ruler Ganapati Deva in Dharanikota (Andhra Pradesh) converted into an abode of local Goddess ‘Balusulamma’.

 Key points:

  • The presiding deity at this 13th century temple was Kakati Devi, the tutelary deity of Kakatiya rulers.
  • Ganapati Deva is the first king who introduced the worship of Kakati Devi into the coastal region of Andhra and outside the dominions of his kingdom.
  • Architectural significance of the temple: The ceiling bears decorations of lotus medallions and no sikhara on its top. These architectural features are totally akin to their counterparts found in shrines at Hanamkonda and Warangal fort etc.

About kakatiya dynasty-Key facts:

The 12th and the 13th centuries saw the emergence of the Kakatiyas.

They were at first the feudatories of the Western Chalukyas of Kalyana, ruling over a small territory near Warangal.

  • The dynasty saw powerful leaders like Ganapathi Deva and Rudramadevi.
  • Prataparudra I, also known as Kakatiya Rudradeva, was the son of the Kakatiya leader Prola II. It was under his rule that the Kakatiyas declared sovereignty. He ruled the kingdom till 1195 A.D.
  • It was under the rule of Prataparudra I that usage of Telugu language in inscriptions began.
  • Before the establishment of Orugallu/Warangal as the capital, Hanamakonda was the first capital of the Kakatiyas.
  • The great Italian traveller Marco Polo visited the Kakatiya Kingdom sometime during Rudramadevi’s tenure as the ruler of the Kakatiya Dynasty and made note of her administrative style; admiring her extensively.

Art and architecture:

  • The iconic Kakatiya Thoranam was built by Rudramadevi’s father in the 12th Century. This ornate arch is said to have many similarities with the gateways at the Sanchi Stupa and is also the emblem of Telangana.
  • The scenic Pakhal lake in Warangal was built by Ganapathi Deva.
  • The 1000 pillar temple in Warangal was built during the Kakatiya Rule and is another example to the exquisite Kakatiya Architecture.
  • The Koh-i-Noor Diamond, which is now among the jewels set in the British Crown, was mined and first owned by the Kakatiya Dynasty.

kohinoor

Society:

Under the Kakatiya rule, the caste system was not rigid and in fact, it was not given much significance socially. Anyone could take up any profession and people were not bound to an occupation by birth.

The Kakatiya rule finally came to an end in 1323 A.D. when Warangal was conquered by the Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq, the then Sultan of Delhi.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Who established Kakatiya kingdom?
  2. Pakhal lake was built by?
  3. Kakatiya Thoranam was constructed by?
  4. How Kakatiya rule came to an end?
  5. How was caste system during the rule of Kakatiyas?

Sources: the Hindu.

 


GS Paper  : 2


 

Topics Covered: Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies.

No-confidence motion against RS Deputy Chairman:


Context:

Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu has rejected the no-confidence motion moved by the Opposition against the Deputy Chairman Harivansh saying that it is “not admissible under the rules”.

  • A no-confidence motion against the Deputy Chairman is a first in parliament and the convention is that Mr Singh should not preside over house sessions till the matter is settled.

What’s the issue?

  • Opposition parties have accused Deputy Chairman of violating the parliamentary procedures in trying to pass the farm sector Bills in haste, circumventing all demands for proper voting.
  • They also say that the Deputy Chairman did not allow points of order to be raised and did not allow large numbers of members of Rajya Sabha, from diverse political parties, to even speak against farm bills.

Deputy Chairman:

Rajya Sabha elects a Deputy Chairman to perform the functions of the Chairman in case of a vacancy in the office of the Chairman or when the Vice-President is acting as or discharging the functions of the President.

More about Deputy Chairman, his powers and functions:

https://www.insightsonindia.com/2020/09/09/deputy-chairman-of-rajya-sabha/.

Removal:

He may be removed from office by a resolution of Rajya Sabha moved after fourteen days notice of the intention to move the resolution and passed by a majority of all the then members of the House.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Eligibility for the post of deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha.
  2. Article 89 of the Indian Constitution is related to?
  3. When the Deputy Chairman has to vacate his office?
  4. Powers and functions.
  5. About the Panel of Vice-Chairmen.
  6. What is point of order?

Mains Link:

Discuss how the Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha is elected.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2020:


Context:

Introduced in the Lok Sabha.

It seeks to make significant changes to the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA).

Proposed amendments- the Bill

  • It seeks to prohibit ‘public servants’ from receiving any foreign funding.
  • It proposes to reduce the use of foreign funds to meet administrative costs by NGOs from the existing 50 per cent to 20 per cent.
  • It seeks to “prohibit any transfer of foreign contribution to any association/person”.
  • It proposes to make Aadhaar cards a mandatory identification document for all office-bearers, directors and other key functionaries of NGOs or associations eligible to receive foreign donations.

Controversial Provisions:

  • To allow for the central government to hold a summary inquiry to direct bodies with FCRA approval to “not utilise the unutilised foreign contribution or receive the remaining portion of foreign contribution”.
  • To limit the use of foreign funds for administrative purposes. This would impact research and advocacy organisations which use the funding to meet their administrative costs.

Main Criticisms:

The Bill will enhance government power and restrict foreign-funded civil society work in India.

It can be used as a means to “target those who speak against the government”.

It will curtail the ease of doing business for civil society organisations.

But, why these amendments are necessary?

  • The need to strengthen the Act has arisen due to several organisations “misutilising or misappropriating” the funds leading to the government cancelling 19,000 such registrations in the past few years.
  • The annual inflow of foreign contribution has almost doubled between the years 2010 and 2019, but many recipients of foreign contribution have not utilised the same for the purpose for which they were registered or granted prior permission under the said Act.
  • Criminal investigations also had to be initiated against dozens of such non-governmental organisations which indulged in outright misappropriation or mis-utilisation of foreign contribution.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. When was FCRA enacted?
  2. Who administers the legislation?
  3. Definition of foreign funding as per the act.
  4. Who cannot accept foreign contributions as per the act.
  5. What is the eligibility criteria for grant of registration?
  6. Key provisions in the amendment bill.

Mains Link:

Discuss why FCRA has been controversial in the recent past.

Sources: PIB.

 

Topics Covered: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

What is “universal eligibility” condition?


Context:

The $1 billion World Bank loan to curb covid pandemic for India comes with a condition of “universal eligibility” in procurements.

What is “universality eligibility” condition?

This would mean that all preferential market access policies, including Public Procurement Order, Micro Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) Policy, certain benefits to start-ups, shall not be applicable on purchases made while implementing the national project.

Other conditions set by the World Bank:

The World Bank would have the right to review the procurement documents, inspect/audit all accounts, records and other files relating to the project. Compliance to these conditions has been made mandatory for the funding.

social_protection

Background:

World Bank has approved 1 billion USD aid to India to accelerate “India’s COVID-19 Special Protection Response Programme”.

  • Of the 1 billion USD aid, around 550 million USD is to be credited by the IDA (International Development Association) and 220 million USD by the IBRD (International Bank of Reconstruction and Development). The final maturity amount of the loan is 18.5 years. It also includes a grace period of five years.

word_bank_group

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Institutions under World Bank group.
  2. Difference between IDA and IBRD.
  3. Types of loans by IDA.
  4. Headquarters of these institutions.
  5. What is universal eligibility condition?

Mains Link:

Discuss how funds from international institutions are helping India tackle COVID 19 pandemic.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

Association of World Election Bodies (A-WEB):


Context:

Election Commission of India has completed one year of Chairmanship of the Association of World Election Bodies (A-WEB).

About The Association of World Election Bodies (A-WEB):

  • It is the largest association of Election Management Bodies (EMBs) worldwide.
  • Established on October 14, 2013 in Song-do, South Korea.
  • Permanent secretariat is located at Seoul.
  • Aims to foster efficiency and effectiveness in conducting free, fair, transparent and participative elections worldwide.

Composition:

115 EMBs as Members & 16 Regional Associations/Organisations as Associate Members.

Sources: PIB.

 


Facts for Prelims


Chendamangalam saree:

Why in News?

Care 4 Chendamangalam, which works with weavers in Kerala, brings the eponymous GI-tagged sari for a fund-raiser exhibition to Bengaluru.

Key facts:

  • Chendamangalam is a small town near Ernakulam that stands at the crossroads of three rivers.
  • The town was part of the ancient port complex of Muziris and known for its fine cotton spun here by the Devanga Chettiars, a community of weavers originally from Karnataka.
  • The GI-tagged Chendamangalam saree is recognisable by its puliyilakara border, a thin black line that runs abreast with the sari’s selvedge.

International Day of Peace:

Observed around the world on 21st September.

The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire.

2020 Theme: Shaping Peace Together.

Background:

The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly. Two decades later, in 2001, the General Assembly unanimously voted to designate the Day as a period of non-violence and cease-fire.

 

Articles to be covered tomorrow:

  1. Suspension of MPs.
  2. Ethical Code for electronic media.
  3. Country of Origin rules.
  4. And few facts.

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