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INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 3 December 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. Why cyclone Burevi will not be as strong as Cyclone Nivar?

 

GS Paper 2:

1. Consent for Contempt.

2. WHO World Malaria Report 2020.

3. Iran nuclear deal.

 

GS Paper 3:

1. Panel formed to oversee India’s Paris climate goals.

2. Chang’e-5 probe.

3. Bioweapons.

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. Bihar plans migratory bird festival to raise awareness about them.

2. Sumdorong Chu.

3. What is Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) test?

4. International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS).

 


GS Paper  : 1


 

Topics Covered: Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc.

Why Cyclone Burevi will not be as strong as Cyclone Nivar?


Context:

Seven days after Cyclone Nivar hit the Karaikal coast, another cyclone, Burevi, named by the Maldives, is expected to cross Tamil Nadu’s southernmost district of Kanyakumari later this week.

  • This is the third cyclone formed within the last 10 days in the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal, put together.

Will Cyclone Burevi be as strong as Cyclone Nivar?

Due to upwelling caused by Nivar, Cyclone Burevi will have limited intensity.

  • When such consecutive systems develop in the same region of the ocean, the predecessor system leads to upwelling — the process in which cooler waters from lower ocean surfaces are pushed towards upper ocean surfaces.
  • In the absence of warm sea surface conditions, any cyclone, in this case Burevi, will not get enough fuel to intensify further while at sea.

What is a cyclone?

Tropical Cyclone is any large system of winds that circulates about a center of low atmospheric pressure in a counter-clockwise direction north of the Equator and in a clockwise direction to the south.

meteorological_dep

Insta Links:

Prelims Link:

  1. List of names given by India.
  2. What is a cyclone called in different regions?
  3. Favourable conditions for a cyclone to occur?
  4. How its intensity varies on land?
  5. Why eastern coast cyclones are more intense?

Mains Link:

What are Cyclones? How are they named? Discuss.

Sources: Indian Express.

 


GS Paper  : 2


 

Topics Covered: Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.

Consent for Contempt:


What is the law on contempt of courts?

The Contempt of Courts Act 1971 defines civil and criminal contempt, and lays down the powers and procedures by which courts can penalise contempt, as well as the penalties that can be given for the offence of contempt.

  • Contempt of court is the offense of being disobedient to or disrespectful toward a court of law and its officers in the form of behavior that opposes or defies the authority, justice and dignity of the court.

Why is the consent of the Attorney General required to initiate contempt proceedings?

The objective behind requiring the consent of the Attorney General before taking cognizance of a complaint is to save the time of the court.

  • This is necessary because judicial time is squandered if frivolous petitions are made and the court is the first forum for bringing them in.
  • The AG’s consent is meant to be a safeguard against frivolous petitions, as it is deemed that the AG, as an officer of the court, will independently ascertain whether the complaint is indeed valid.

Under what circumstances is the AG’s consent not needed?

The AG’s consent is mandatory when a private citizen wants to initiate a case of contempt of court against a person.

However, when the court itself initiates a contempt of court case the AG’s consent is not required.

  • This is because the court is exercising its inherent powers under the Constitution to punish for contempt and such Constitutional powers cannot be restricted because the AG declined to grant consent.

What happens if the AG denies consent?

If the AG denies consent, the matter all but ends.

The complainant can, however, separately bring the issue to the notice of the court and urge the court to take suo motu cognizance.

  • Article 129 of the Constitution gives the Supreme Court the power to initiate contempt cases on its own, independent of the motion brought before it by the AG or with the consent of the AG.

Insta Link:

Prelims Link:

  1. Powers of SC vs HCs wrt Contempt cases.
  2. Constitutional provisions in this regard.
  3. Changes brought about by Contempt of Courts (Amendment) Act, 2006.
  4. Civil vs Criminal contempt.
  5. Rights under Article 19.
  6. Section 10 of The Contempt of Courts Act of 1971 is related to?

Mains Link:

Discuss how contempt cases are handled by Supreme Court in India.

Sources: Indian Express.

 

Topics Covered: Issues related to health.

WHO World Malaria Report 2020:


Key findings:

  • India has made considerable progress in reducing its malaria burden.
  • India is the only high endemic country which has reported a decline of 17.6% in 2019 as compared to 2018.
  • The Annual Parasitic Incidence (API) reduced by 27.6% in 2018 compared to 2017 and by 18.4% in 2019 as compared to 2018. India has sustained API less than one since year 2012.
  • India has also contributed to the largest drop in cases region-wide, from approximately 20 million to about 6 million. The percentage drop in the malaria cases was 71.8% and deaths was 73.9% between 2000 to 2019.

High Burden to High Impact (HBHI) initiative:

  • Initiated by WHO in 11 high malaria burden countries, including India.
  • In India, Implementation has been started in four states i.e. West Bengal and Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.

About Malaria:

Caused by a parasite that commonly infects a certain type of mosquito which feeds on humans.

Spread: Female Anopheles mosquitoes deposit parasite sporozoites into the skin of a human host.

 Four kinds of malaria parasites infect humans:

Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, and P. malariae. In addition, P. knowlesi, a type of malaria that naturally infects macaques in Southeast Asia, also infects humans, causing malaria that is transmitted from animal to human (“zoonotic” malaria).

Durgama Anchalare Malaria Nirakaran (DAMaN) initiative:

  • Among states, Odisha’s Durgama Anchalare Malaria Nirakaran (DAMaN)initiative is significant.
  • The initiative aims to deliver services to the most inaccessible and hardest hit people of the State. The initiative has in-built innovative strategies to combat asymptomatic malaria.
  • The programme is jointly implemented by Indian Council of Medical Research-National Institute of Malaria Research (ICMR-NIMR), National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), Odisha and Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV).

Insta Links:

Prelims Link:

  1. Difference and examples of various diseases caused by Virus and Bacteria.
  2. Malaria- causes and treatment.

Sources: PIB.

 

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

Iran nuclear deal:


Context:

Biden sets new demands for return to Iran nuclear deal.

What are the demands?

Iran would have to address its “malign” regional activities through proxies in Lebanon, Iraq, Syria and Yemen in the talks that would have to include its Arab neighbours like Saudi Arabia.

Background:

President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the deal in 2018 and has reimposed crippling sanctions on Iran as part of a “maximum pressure” campaign against the US’s arch enemy.

About the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA:

Iran agreed to rein in its nuclear programme in a 2015 deal struck with the US, UK, Russia, China, France and Germany.

The 2015 nuclear deal gave Iran relief from sanctions in return for curbs on its nuclear programme.

Under the deal:

  1. Iran agreed to rein in its nuclear programme in a 2015 deal struck with the US, UK, Russia, China, France and Germany.
  2. Tehran agreed to significantly cut its stores of centrifuges, enriched uranium and heavy-water, all key components for nuclear weapons.
  3. The Joint Commission was established, with the negotiating parties all represented, to monitor implementation of the agreement.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is JCPOA? Signatories.
  2. Iran and its neighbours.
  3. What is IAEA? Relation with the UN.
  4. Members of IAEA.
  5. Programs of IAEA.
  6. Board of Governors- composition, voting and functions.
  7. What is Uranium Enrichment?

Mains Link:

Write a note on JCPOA.

Sources: the Hindu.

 


GS Paper  : 3


 

Topics Covered: Conservation and Pollution related issues.

Panel formed to oversee India’s Paris climate goals:


Context:

The Union Environment Ministry has constituted a high-level inter-ministerial apex committee for Implementation of Paris Agreement (AIPA) under the chairmanship of Secretary, MoEFCC. to ensure that India is “on track” towards meeting its obligations under the Paris Agreement.

  • The committee will also act as a national authority for the regulation of carbon markets in India.

Objective:

AIPA has been constituted with the purpose of “ensuring a coordinated response on climate change matters that protects the country’s interests and ensures that India is on track towards meeting its climate change obligations under the Paris Agreement including its submitted Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs)”.

What are NDCs?

NDCs are the accounts of the voluntary efforts to be made by countries that are a part of the Paris Agreement, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the impacts of anthropogenic climate change.

  • The NDCs are to be implemented in the post-2020 period.
  • India had submitted its NDCs in 2015.

The three quantitative goals in the Indian NDCs are:

  1. A 33-35 per cent reduction in the gross domestic product emissions intensity by 2030 from 2005 levels.
  2. A 40 per cent share of non-fossil fuel based electricity by 2030.
  3. Creating a carbon sink of 2.5-3 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide through afforestation programmes.

paris_climate_agreement

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is Paris Agreement?
  2. Which countries have not signed?
  3. Targets.
  4. Funding mechanism announced under the Paris Agreement.
  5. What are NDCs?

Mains Link:

Discuss the significance of the Paris Climate deal.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Awareness in space.

Chang’e-5 probe:


Context:

Chinese probe lands on Moon to collect samples.

About the Chang’e-5 probe:

  • The probe is named after the mythical Chinese moon goddess.
  • The rocket is comprised of four parts: an orbiter, a returner, an ascender and a lander.
  • The objective of the mission is to bring back lunar rocks, the first attempt by any nation to retrieve samples from the moon in four decades.
  • If successful, China will be only the third country to have retrieved samples from the moon, following the U.S. and the Soviet Union in the 1960s and 1970s.
  • This will help scientists learn about the moon’s origins, formation and volcanic activity on its surface.

Identified location for the collection of samples:

The Chinese probe will collect 2 kg of surface material from a previously unexplored area known as Oceanus Procellarum — or “Ocean of Storms” — which consist of a vast lava plain.

The Chang’e-5 mission is expected to realize four “firsts” in China’s space history:

  1. The first time for a probe to take off from the surface of the Moon.
  2. The first time to automatically sample the lunar surface.
  3. The first time to conduct unmanned rendezvous and docking in lunar orbit.
  4. The first time to return to Earth with lunar soil samples in escape velocity.

ISRO_Shukrayaan_1

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention.

Bioweapons:


Context:

Vice Chief of the Army Staff Lieutenant General S.K. Saini has said that “future wars may gravitate towards zero cost wars, wherein a very virulent pathogen may immobilise high-technology arsenal”.

  • He said that “weaker militaries will continue to seek an asymmetric advantage in an unrestricted warfare milieu” while “social media will continue to be the vector of choice for the battle of narratives”.

What are Biological weapons?

Also called germ weapons, they are any of a number of disease-producing agents—such as bacteria, viruses, rickettsiae, fungi, toxins, or other biological agents—that may be utilized as weapons against humans, animals, or plants.

  • Biological weapons, like chemical weapons, radiological weapons, and nuclear weapons, are commonly referred to as weapons of mass destruction.

The Biological Weapons Convention (BWC):

It is the first multilateral disarmament treaty banning the development, production and stockpiling of an entire category of weapons of mass destruction, was opened for signature on 10 April 1972. The BWC entered into force on 26 March 1975.

The BWC bans:

  1. The development, stockpiling, acquisition, retention, and production of:
  2. Biological agents and toxins “of types and in quantities that have no justification for prophylactic, protective or other peaceful purposes;”
  3. Weapons, equipment, and delivery vehicles “designed to use such agents or toxins for hostile purposes or in armed conflict.”
  4. The transfer of or assistance with acquiring the agents, toxins, weapons, equipment, and delivery vehicles described above.

Sources: the Hindu.

 


Facts for Prelims:


Bihar plans migratory bird festival to raise awareness about them:

  • Bihar is holding a bird festival for the first time as part of its initiative to save migratory birds that arrive in the state in large numbers every year.
  • The festival is being organised in eastern Bihar’s Bhagalpur district which has special significance. This was because the 60-kilometre-long stretch of the Vikramshila Dolphin Sanctuary between Sultanganj and Kahalgaon had long been a hub of migratory birds.
  • Some prominent migratory birds arriving in Bhagalpur include bar-headed goose, steppe eagle, Ferruginous duck, Eurasian curlew, white wagtail, great crested grebe, common greenshank and Eurasian coot.

Sumdorong Chu:

  • In 1986–87, a military standoff took place between India and China in the Sumdorong Chu Valley bordering the Tawang district, Arunachal Pradesh and Cona County, Tibet.
  • The standoff was the first military confrontation along the disputed McMahon Line after the 1962 war and gave rise to fears of escalation.

chinese_intrusions

What is Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) test?

NMR spectroscopy is an analytical chemistry technique used in quality control and reserach for determining the content and purity of a sample as well as its molecular structure.

Why in News?

10 out of 13 honey brands from India have failed in this ‘purity test’.

  • The NMR test is not required by Indian law for honey that is being marketed locally but is needed for export.

International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS):

Context:

The International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA) obtained membership of International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS).

About IAIS:

  • Established in 1994, the IAIS headquartered in Switzerlandis a voluntary membership organization of insurance supervisors and regulators from more than 200 jurisdictions, constituting 97% of the world’s insurance premiums.
  • It is the international standard-setting body responsible for developing and assisting in the implementation of principles, standards and other supporting material for the supervision of the insurance sector.
  • The IAIS also provides a forum for Members to share their experiences and understanding of insurance supervision and insurance markets.
  • In recognition of its collective expertise, the IAIS is routinely called upon by the G20 leaders and other international standard setting bodies.

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