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INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 5 February 2021

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 2:

1. Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana.

2. International Criminal Court.

 

GS Paper 3:

1. National Agriculture Market (e-NAM).

2. Budget proposes tax on EPF interest.

3. Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) Act.

4. Square Kilometre Array.

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. Monpa handmade paper.

2. ‘KAPILA’.

 


GS Paper  : 2


 

Topics covered: Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.

Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana:


Context:

The scheme has crossed 1.75 crore eligible women till financial year 2020.

About PMMVY:

It is a Maternity Benefit Programme that is implemented in all the districts of the country in accordance with the provision of the National Food Security Act, 2013.

  • Under PMMVY, pregnant women and lactating mothers (PW&LM) receive ₹5,000 on the birth of their first child in three instalments, after fulfilling certain conditionalities.
  • It excludes those PW&LM who are in regular employment with the Central Government or the State Governments or PSUs or those who are in receipt of similar benefits under any law for the time being in force.
  • The direct benefit cash transfer is to help expectant mothers meet enhanced nutritional requirements as well as to partially compensate them for wage loss during their pregnancy.
  • The scheme was announced on December 31, 2016.

The eligible beneficiaries would receive the incentive given under the Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) for Institutional delivery and the incentive received under JSY would be accounted towards maternity benefits so that on an average a woman gets Rs 6000 / – .

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is PMMVY?
  2. Benefits.
  3. Eligibility.

Mains Link:

Discuss the significance of PMMVY.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

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

International Criminal Court:


Context:

The International Criminal Court convicted a former commander (Dominic Ongwen) in the notorious Ugandan rebel group the Lord’s Resistance Army of dozens of war crimes and crimes against humanity ranging from multiple murders to forced marriages.

international_criminal_court

About ICC:

  • The International Criminal Court (ICC), located in The Hague, is the court of last resort for prosecution of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity.
  • It is the first permanent, treaty based, international court established to help end impunity for the perpetrators of the most serious crimes of concern to the international community.
  • Its founding treaty, the Rome Statute, entered into force on July 1, 2002.
  • Funding: Although the Court’s expenses are funded primarily by States Parties, it also receives voluntary contributions from governments, international organisations, individuals, corporations and other entities.

Composition and voting power:

  • The Court’s management oversight and legislative body, the Assembly of States Parties, consists of one representative from each state party.
  • Each state party has one vote and “every effort” has to be made to reach decisions by consensus. If consensus cannot be reached, decisions are made by vote.
  • The Assembly is presided over by a president and two vice-presidents, who are elected by the members to three-year terms.

Criticisms:

  • It does not have the capacity to arrest suspects and depends on member states for their cooperation.
  • Critics of the Court argue that there are insufficient checks and balances on the authority of the ICC prosecutor and judges and insufficient protection against politicized prosecutions or other abuses.
  • The ICC has been accused of bias and as being a tool of Western imperialism, only punishing leaders from small, weak states while ignoring crimes committed by richer and more powerful states.
  • ICC cannot mount successful cases without state cooperation is problematic for several reasons. It means that the ICC acts inconsistently in its selection of cases, is prevented from taking on hard cases and loses legitimacy.

Icj_vs_ICC

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Differences between ICJ and ICC.
  2. Geographical locations of these organisations.
  3. What is Rome statute?
  4. Orders of ICC.
  5. What happens when its orders are not implemented?

Mains Link:

Write a note on ICC.

Sources: the Hindu.

 


GS Paper  : 3


 

Topics Covered: e-technology in the aid of farmers.

National Agriculture Market (e-NAM):


Context:

So far, more than 1.69 crore Farmers & 1.55 Lakh traders are registered on e-NAM platform.

What is e-NAM?

  • E-NAM (National Agriculture Market) is an online trading platform for agriculture produce aiming to help farmers, traders, and buyers with online trading and getting a better price by smooth marketing.
  • Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) is the lead agency for implementing eNAM under the aegis of Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Government of India.

national_agriculture

NAM has the following advantages:

For the farmers, NAM promises more options for sale. It would increase his access to markets through warehouse-based sales and thus obviate the need to transport his produce to the mandi.

For the local trader in the mandi / market, NAM offers the opportunity to access a larger national market for secondary trading.

Bulk buyers, processors, exporters etc. benefit from being able to participate directly in trading at the local mandi / market level through the NAM platform, thereby reducing their intermediation costs.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Who implements eNAM?
  2. Composition of SFAC.
  3. Which states have not implemented eNAM?
  4. What are APMCs? How are they administered?

Mains Link:

Write a note the National Agriculture Market (eNAM).

Sources: PIB.

 

Topics Covered: Government Budgeting.

Budget proposes tax on EPF interest:


Context:

In the Union Budget 2021, Finance Minister announced a decision to tax interest incomes on annual Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) and Voluntary Provident Fund (VPF) contributions of over Rs 2.5 lakh.

Implications:

  • The interest income earned by an individual will be taxed at current income tax rates if the contribution exceeds Rs 2.5 lakh per annum; the same rule applies to VPF contributions.
  • This will only be applicable to the employee’s share of provident fund and not the employers.

Impact:

The move will impact high-income earners or high net-worth individuals (HNIs) who make large voluntary contributions to provident fund annually.

Need for:

So far, many people put huge sums of money annually towards EPF and earned interest income from it without having to pay any tax. An anomaly is created due to this. The latest move will help restore equality and discourage HNIs from making high annual contributions towards provident fund.

What is EPF?

It is mandatory for any company with 20+ employees to comply with the EPF schemes of the government. As per this scheme, the employer, as well as the employee, are required to contribute some part of the monthly salary of the employee (generally 12%) into the EPF investment account.

What is VPF?

As the name suggests, it is a voluntary scheme which allows employees to voluntarily contribute to their PF account after contributing 12% as per the EPF guideline. The interest rate with VPF is similar to EPF and employees can contribute up to 100% of their salary.

Key features:

Applicability: Only salaried working professionals can open EPF and VPF.

Contribution: For EPF, the minimum contribution for employee and employer is 12 per cent of the basic pay + dearness allowance of the employee. With VPF, an employee can contribute any amount up to 100% of their salary + dearness allowance.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is EPF?
  2. What is VPF?
  3. Key features.
  4. What is EPFO?

Mains Link:

Discuss the significance of EPF Scheme.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.

Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) Act:


Context:

The Corporate Affairs Ministry is planning to decriminalise 12 offences as well as omit a provision entailing criminal liability under the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) Act, 2008, for greater ease of doing business for law-abiding LLPs.

What is a LLP?

A Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) is a partnership in which some or all partners have limited liability. It therefore exhibits elements of partnerships and corporations.

  • In an LLP, one partner is not responsible or liable for another partner’s misconduct or negligence.

Salient features of an LLP:

  • An LLP is a body corporate and legal entity separate from its partners. It has perpetual succession.
  • Being the separate legislation (i.e. LLP Act, 2008), the provisions of Indian Partnership Act, 1932 are not applicable to an LLP and it is regulated by the contractual agreement between the partners.
  • Every Limited Liability Partnership shall use the words “Limited Liability Partnership” or its acronym “LLP” as the last words of its name.

Composition:

Every LLP shall have at least two designated partners being individuals, at least one of them being resident in India and all the partners shall be the agent of the Limited Liability Partnership but not of other partners.

Need for and significance LLP:

  • LLP format is an alternative corporate business vehicle that provides the benefits of limited liability of a company but allows its members the flexibility of organizing their internal management on the basis of a mutually arrived agreement, as is the case in a partnership firm.
  • This format would be quite useful for small and medium enterprises in general and for the enterprises in services sector in particular.
  • Internationally, LLPs are the preferred vehicle of business particularly for service industry or for activities involving professionals.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Difference between LLP and companies.
  2. Difference between LP and LLP.
  3. What is a body corporate?
  4. Roles and functions of LLP partners.

Mains Link:

Write a note on limited liability partnerships.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Awareness in space.

Square Kilometre Array:


Context:

On 4th Feb, the Square Kilometre Array Observatory (SKAO) Council held its maiden meeting and approved the establishment of the world’s largest radio telescope.

About SKAO:

  • SKAO is a new intergovernmental organisation dedicated to radio astronomy and is headquartered in the UK.
  • At the moment, organisations from ten countries are a part of the SKAO.
  • These include Australia, Canada, China, India, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, Sweden, the Netherlands and the UK.

What are radio telescopes?

  • Unlike optical telescopes, radio telescopes can detect invisible gas and, therefore, they can reveal areas of space that may be obscured by cosmic dust.
  • The first radio signals were detected by physicist Karl Jansky in the 1930s.
  • The Arecibo telescope in Puerto Rico, which was the second-largest single-dish radio telescope in the world, collapsed in December 2020. The telescope was built in 1963.

About SKA Telescope:

  • The telescope is proposed to be the largest radio telescope in the world.
  • It will be located in Africa and Australia whose operation, maintenance and construction will be overseen by SKAO.
  • The completion is expected to take nearly a decade at a cost of over £1.8 billion.

SKA

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About SKA.
  2. About SKAO.
  3. What are radio telescopes?
  4. How are they different from optical telescopes?

Sources: Indian Express.

 


Facts for Prelims:


Monpa handmade paper:

  • It is a 1000-year-old heritage art of Arunachal Pradesh.
  • The art of making handmade paper originated among the Monpas over 1000 years ago.
  • Gradually this art became an integral part of local custom and culture of Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh.
  • The fine-textured handmade paper, which is called ‘Mon Shugu’ in the local dialect, is integral to the vibrant culture of the local tribes in Tawang.
  • The Monpa handmade paper is made from the bark of a local tree called ‘Shugu Sheng’, which has medicinal values too.

‘KAPILA’:

  • The Government has launched a campaign namely Kalam Program for Intellectual Property Literacy and Awareness Campaign (KAPILA) for Intellectual Property Literacy and creating patent awareness.
  • The objectives of the scheme include creating awareness regarding Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) in Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), enabling of IP protection of inventions originating from faculty and students of HEIs, development of Credit Course on IPR, training program etc.

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