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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. It’s time to define limits of sedition, says SC.

2. January 30 is now ‘World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day’.

3. What is the negative imports list for defence?

4. Thousands of Rohingya protest at Bhashan Char.

5. China to allow couples to have third child.


GS Paper 3:

1. 5G technology.


Facts for Prelims:

1. Litoria mira.

2. Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).

GS Paper  :  2


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

It’s time to define limits of sedition, says SC:


The Supreme Court has said “it is time to define the limits of sedition”.

  • The observation was made while dealing with the writ petitions filed by two news channels seeking the quashing of FIR and contempt petitions.

What’s the case?

The Andhra Government had slapped charges against two Telugu news channels — TV5 and ABN Andhra Jyothi for alleged sedition in showing ‘offensive’ speeches of two leaders.

Petitioners’ arguments:

They said the government’s action is a violation of the earlier SC order (April 30), which restrains the arrest and prosecution against citizens for ventilating grievances with respect to Covid-19 issues.

What next?

The court has sought the response of the state government within four weeks on the pleas of the channels which are charged for various offences including the harsh penal offence of sedition.

General observations made by the Court on Sedition:

  • It is time we define the limits of sedition.
  • Provisions of 124A (sedition) and 153 (promoting enmity between classes) of the IPC require interpretation, particularly on the issue of the rights of press and free speech.


The sedition law has been indiscriminately used against critics, journalists, social media users, activists and citizens for airing their grievances about the governments COVID-19 management, or even for seeking help to gain medical access, equipment, drugs and oxygen cylinders, especially during the second wave of the pandemic.

What is sedition?

Section 124A of the IPC states, “Whoever, by words, either spoken or written, or by signs, or by visible representation, or otherwise, brings or attempts to bring into hatred or contempt, or excites or attempts to excite disaffection towards, the government established by law in shall be punished with imprisonment for life, to which fine may be added, or with imprisonment which may extend to three years, to which fine may be added, or with fine.”

Need for a proper definition?

The sedition law has been in controversy for far too long. Often the governments are criticized for using the law — Section 124-A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) — against vocal critics of their policies.

  • Therefore, this Section is seen as a restriction of individuals’ freedom of expression and falls short of the provisions of reasonable restrictions on freedom of speech under Article 19 of the Constitution.

The law has been in debate ever since it was brought into force by the colonial British rulers in 1860s. Several top freedom movement leaders including Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru were booked under the sedition law.

  1. Mahatma Gandhi described it as the “prince among the political sections of the Indian Penal Code designed to suppress the liberty of the citizen.”
  2. Nehru had described it as “highly objectionable and obnoxious” which “should have no place in any body of laws that we might pass”. Nehru said, “The sooner we get rid of it the better.”

Relevant Supreme Court judgements:

  1. The Kedar Nath Singh vs State of Bihar case (1962):

While dealing with offences under Section 124A of the IPC, a five-judge Supreme Court constitutional bench had, in the Kedar Nath Singh vs State of Bihar case (1962), laid down some guiding principles.

  • The court ruled that comments-however strongly worded-expressing disapprobation of the actions of the government without causing public disorder by acts of violence would not be penal.
  1. The Balwant Singh vs State of Punjab (1995) case:

In this case, the Supreme Court had clarified that merely shouting slogans, in this case Khalistan Zindabad, does not amount to sedition. Evidently, the sedition law is being both misunderstood and misused to muzzle dissent.


Insta Curious:

Do you know how Mr. K.M. Mushshi’s Amendment had removed ‘Sedition’ from the Constitution And how a SC judgement brought back Sedition Law in India?Read Here

Despite having so many negatives, why do we still have this law? Read here: 



Prelims Link:

  1. Where is sedition defined?
  2. Section 124A of the IPC is related to?
  3. Section 153 of the IPC is related to?
  4. Relevant Supreme Court judgments.
  5. Article 19 of the Indian Constitution.

Mains Link:

Discuss the issues associated with the imposition of Sedition law in India.

Sources: the Hindu.


Topics Covered: Issues related to health.

January 30 now ‘World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day’:


Delegates at the 74th World Health Assembly unanimously adopted a proposal by the United Arab Emirates. to declare January 30 as ‘World Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD) Day’’.

What are Neglected Tropical Diseases?

  • They are infections that are most common among marginalised communities in the developing regions of Africa, Asia and the Americas.
  • Caused by a variety of pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, protozoa and parasitic worms.
  • They generally receive less funding for research and treatment than malaises like tuberculosis, HIV-AIDS and malaria.
  • Some examples include snakebite envenomation, scabies, yaws, trachoma, Leishmaniasis and Chagas disease.

The WHO’s new road map for 2021–2030 calls for three strategic shifts to end NTDs:

  1. From measuring process to measuring impact.
  2. From disease-specific planning and programming to collaborative work across sectors.
  3. From externally driven agendas reliant to programmes that are country-owned and country-financed.

Why was January 30 chosen?

It was on this day that the London Declaration on NTDs was adopted, January 30, 2012.

  • The first World NTD Day was celebrated informally in 2020.

Why do NTDs need special attention?

NTDs affect more than a billion people globally. They are preventable and treatable. However, these diseases — and their intricate interrelationships with poverty and ecological systems — continue to cause devastating health, social and economic consequences.


Infections are caused by unsafe water, poor housing conditions and poor sanitation.

Children are the most vulnerable to these diseases, which kill, impair or permanently disable millions of people every year, often resulting in life-long physical pain and social stigmatization.

Policies on neglected diseases research in India:

The National Health Policy (2017) sets an ambition to stimulate innovation to meet health needs and ensure that new drugs are affordable for those who need them most, but it does not specifically tackle neglected diseases.

The National Policy on Treatment of Rare Diseases (2018) includes infectious tropical diseases and identifies a need to support research on treatments for rare diseases. It has not yet prioritised diseases and areas for research funding or how innovation would be supported.


Insta Curious:

Do you know how many diseases have been identified as Neglected Tropical Diseases by WHO? Know very briefly about them : CLICK HERE



Prelims Link:

  1. About the World Health Assembly- composition and functions.
  2. Examples of NTDs.
  3. Why was January 30 chosen as the World NTD?

Mains Link:

Write a note on NTDs.

Sources: Down to Earth.


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

What is the negative imports list for defence?


The Defence Ministry has notified the second negative import list — now renamed as the ‘positive indigenisation list’ — of 108 items that can now be only purchased from indigenous sources. The new list takes the total number on the list to 209.

  • The list comprises complex systems, sensors, simulator, weapons and ammunitions like helicopters, next generation corvettes, Air Borne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) systems, tank engines.

Significance and implications of this move:

  1. Recognises the potential of local defence industry.
  2. Invigorate impetus to domestic Research and Development by attracting fresh investment into technology and manufacturing capabilities.
  3. Provides an excellent opportunity for ‘start-ups’ as also Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

What is the negative imports list policy?

Introduced in August 2020, the negative list essentially means that the Armed Forces—Army, Navy and Air Force—will only procure such items from domestic manufacturers.

  • The manufacturers could be private sector players or Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs).

Why was this policy needed? What will be the impacts?

As per Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, India has been the second largest importer between 2014 and 2019 with US$ 16.75 billion worth of imports during this period.


Insta Curious:

Do you know there is a negative list maintained by taxing authorities too?(Though not directly related to this article, it is good to know) : READ HERE (No need to remember everything)

Report on trends in global military expenditure:Click here



Prelims Link:

  1. When was this policy introduced?
  2. Features.
  3. Exceptions.
  4. Implementing ministry.

Mains Link:

Discuss the need for and significance of the policy.

Sources: the Hindu.


Topics Covered: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

Thousands of Rohingya protest at Bhashan Char:


Several thousand Rohingya recently staged “unruly” protests against living conditions on Bhashan Char- a cyclone-prone island off Bangladesh.

What’s the issue?

Since December, Bangladesh has shifted 18,000 refugees to the low-lying silt island of Bhashan Char from the mainland Bangladesh, where around 8,50,000 people live in squalid and cramped conditions.

What’s the main concern now?

Bhasan Char (Floating Island) also known as Char Piya or Thengar Char Island, is an island in Hatiya, Bangladesh.

  • The island was formed from a build-up of silt in the Bay of Bengal only 20 years ago, and concerns have been consistently raised about Bhasan Char’s exposure to extreme weather and distance from the mainland in emergencies.


Who are Rohingyas?

  • They are an Ethnic group, mostly Muslims. They were not granted full citizenship by Myanmar.
  • They are, basically, stateless, Indo-Aryan ethnic group who reside in Rakhine State, Myanmar.
  • There were an estimated 1 million Rohingya living in Myanmar before the 2016–17 crisis. An estimated 625,000 refugees from Rakhine, Myanmar, had crossed the border into Bangladesh since August 2017.

Described by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres as “one of, if not the, most discriminated people in the world”.

Protection available to Rohingyas under the International Conventions:

  1. The 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol:

They define the term ‘refugee’ and outlines the rights of refugees, as well as the legal obligations of States to protect them.

  • The core principle is non-refoulement, which asserts that a refugee should not be returned to a country where they face serious threats to their life or freedom.
  • However, the concern now is that Bangladesh is not a signatory to this convention.
  1. International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR):

Even though the refugees are foreigners in the country of asylum, by virtue of Article 2 of the ICCPR, 1966, they could enjoy the same fundamental rights and freedoms as nationals- the right to equality before the law, equal protection of the law and non-discrimination.


Insta Curious:

  1. Know about some of the important refugee crisis across the world. Read here, 
  2. Can India Turn the Rohingya Crisis’ Tide? Read here,
  3. Do you know the difference between Refugee & Migrant? & Are Migrants entitled to Protection? Read here



Prelims Link:

  1. Who are Rohingyas?
  2. Location of Rakhine State.
  3. ICJ vs International Criminal Court.
  4. About the ICCPR.
  5. About the 1951 Refugee Convention.

Mains Link:

Write a note on Rohingya Crisis.

Sources: the Hindu.


Topics Covered: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.

China to allow couples to have third child:


Days after China’s census data showed population growth slipping to its slowest rate since the 1950s, the country has announced it will now allow three children per married couple.

  • Please note, five years ago in 2016, it first relaxed its controversial one-child policy to two.

Firstly, why was one-child policy implemented?

China embarked upon its one-child policy in 1980, when the Communist Party was concerned that the country’s growing population, which at the time was approaching one billion, would impede economic progress.

  • It was enforced through several means, including incentivising families financially to have one child, making contraceptives widely available, and imposing sanctions against those who violated the policy.

Criticisms associated with this policy:

Chinese authorities have long hailed the policy as a success, claiming that it helped the country avert severe food and water shortages by preventing up to 40 crore people from being born.

However, the one-child limit was also a source of discontent, as:

  1. The state used brutal tactics such as forced abortions and sterilisations.
  2. It violated human rights, and was unfair to poorer Chinese since the richer ones could afford to pay economic sanctions if they violated the policy.
  3. It gave way for enforcing reproductive limits as a tool for social control.
  4. It affected the sex ratio- skewed towards males.
  5. It led to abortion of female fetuses rose and so did the number of girls who were placed in orphanages or abandoned.
  6. It made China’s population age faster than other countries, impacting the country’s growth potential.

Why was it discontinued?

Fears of a rapidly ageing population undermining economic growth forced the ruling Communist Party to allow two children per married couple.

What necessiated further reforms?

While the relaxation did result in some improvement in the proportion of young people in the country, the policy change was deemed insufficient in averting an impending demographic crisis.

Challenges ahead:

Experts say relaxing limits on reproductive rights alone cannot go a long way in averting an unwanted demographic shift.

The main factors behind fewer children being born are:

  1. Rising costs of living, education and supporting ageing parents.
  2. Country’s pervasive culture of long working hours.
  3. Many couples believing that one child is enough, and some expressing no interest in having children.


Know about China’s latest census report, : Read here 


Insta Curious:

Why India Does Not Need A Two-Child Law? Read here, 

Did you know that few Indian states too have such policies. Read here

Sources: the Hindu.

GS Paper  :  3


Topics Covered: Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

5G technology:


Bollywood actor Juhi Chawla has moved the Delhi High Court seeking a scientific study on any adverse effects of radio-frequency radiation emitted by cellular telecommunications using 5G technology on ‘health, life, organ or limb of adult or child, or to flora and fauna’ before its official rollout in the country.

What is 5G?

  • 5G is the next generation of mobile broadband that will eventually replace, or at least augment 4G LTE connection.

Features and benefits of the 5G technology:

  1. Operate in the millimeter wave spectrum (30-300 GHz) which have the advantage of sending large amounts of data at very high speeds.
  2. Operate in 3 bands, namely low, mid and high frequency spectrum.
  3. Reduced latency will support new applications that leverage the power of 5G, the Internet of Things (IoT), and artificial intelligence.
  4. Increased capacity on 5G networks can minimize the impact of load spikes, like those that take place during sporting events and news events.

Significance of the technology:

India’s National Digital Communications Policy 2018 highlights the importance of 5G when it states that the convergence of a cluster of revolutionary technologies including 5G, the cloud, Internet of Things (IoT) and data analytics, along with a growing start-up community, promise to accelerate and deepen its digital engagement, opening up a new horizon of opportunities.

What are the potential health risks from 5G?

To date, and after much research performed, no adverse health effect has been causally linked with exposure to wireless technologies.

  • Tissue heating is the main mechanism of interaction between radiofrequency fields and the human body. Radiofrequency exposure levels from current technologies result in negligible temperature rise in the human body.
  • As the frequency increases, there is less penetration into the body tissues and absorption of the energy becomes more confined to the surface of the body (skin and eye).

Provided that the overall exposure remains below international guidelines, no consequences for public health are anticipated.

What are the international exposure guidelines?

Two international bodies produce exposure guidelines on electromagnetic fields. Many countries currently adhere to the guidelines recommended by:

  1. The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection.
  2. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, through the International Committee on Electromagnetic Safety.

These guidelines are not technology-specific. They cover radiofrequencies up to 300 GHz, including the frequencies under discussion for 5G.

International efforts- International Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) Project:

WHO established the International Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) Project in 1996. The project investigates the health impact of exposure to electric and magnetic fields in the frequency range 0-300 GHz and advises national authorities on EMF radiation protection.


Insta Curious:

Do you know what Orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing is? (Read Briefly Here)

Is India prepared for roll-out of 5G? Read here



Prelims Link:

  1. What is 5G?
  2. Differences between 3G, 4G and 5G.
  3. Applications.
  4. What is a spectrum?
  5. About EMF Project.

Mains Link:

Discuss the significance of 5G technology.

Sources: the Hindu.


Facts for Prelims:

Litoria mira:

  • They are new frog species discovered recently in the rainforests of New Guinea. They are chocolate coloured.
  • The name is inspired by the Latin adjective mirum, which means surprised or strange, stemming from the scientist’s surprise in discovering an undescribed member of the predominately Australian Litoria genus of tree frogs.
  • Litoria mira can be distinguished from all other Litoria by its unique combination of moderately large size, webbing on hand, relatively short and robust limbs, and small violet patch of skin on the edge of its eyes.

Please note that the island of New Guinea is separated from the ‘horn’ of Queensland by the Torres Strait.

Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT):

The Union government has appointed J.B. Mohapatra as the interim chief of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) for three months.

About CBDT:

  1. It is a statutory body established as per the Central Board of Revenue Act, 1963.
  2. It is India’s official financial action task force unit.
  3. It is administered by the Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance.


Articles to be covered tomorrow:

  1. Justice Mishra likely to head NHRC.
  2. The National Security Act.

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