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INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 19 June 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 1:

1. Flag Satyagraha.

 

GS Paper 2:

1. Recusal of Judges.

2. How are poll results challenged, and when courts have set them aside?

 

GS Paper 3:

1. Corporatization of ordnance factory board.

2. Children and Digital Dumpsites report.

3. Barrier to cyclone storms: Odisha plans to plant mangroves along its coast.

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. Indian Certification of Medical Devices (ICMED) Plus Scheme.

2. Gulf Of Aden.

3. Integrated Theatre Command.


GS Paper  :  1


 

Topics Covered: The Freedom Struggle – its various stages and important contributors /contributions from different parts of the country.

Flag Satyagraha:


Context:

The Ministry of Culture on 18th June had organised a programme to observe the Flag Satyagraha in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh.

What is Flag Satyagraha?

  1. The Flag Satyagraha movement by the freedom fighters shook the British government and it infused a new life into the freedom movement.
  2. Also called the Jhanda Satyagraha, it was held in Jabalpur and Nagpur in 1923.
  3. The news of flag hoisting in Jabalpur spread like fire in the country and after flags were hoisted at several places across the country.

Significance:

It is a campaign of peaceful civil disobedience that focused on exercising the right and freedom to hoist the nationalist flag and challenge the legitimacy of the British Rule in India through the defiance of laws prohibiting the hoisting of nationalist flags and restricting civil freedoms.

Outcomes:

The arrest of nationalist protestors demanding the right to hoist the flag caused an outcry across India especially as Gandhi had recently been arrested.

  • Nationalist leaders such as Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Jamnalal Bajaj, Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari, Dr. Rajendra Prasad and Vinoba Bhave organised the revolt and thousands of people from different regions traveled to Nagpur and other parts of the Central Provinces to participate in civil disobedience.
  • In the end, the British negotiated an agreement with Patel and other Congress leaders permitting the protestors to conduct their march unhindered and obtaining the release of all those arrested.

 

Insta Curious: 

Do you know about Shivapur Dhwaja Satyagraha? Read Here

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. When was the flag designed by Venkayya officially accepted by the Indian National Congress?
  2. Adoption of National Flag by the Constituent Assembly.
  3. Flag Code of India- overview.
  4. Manufacturer of the national flag in India.
  5. About Flag Protests in India.

Mains Link:

Discuss the key provisions of Flag Code of India, 2002.

Sources: PIB.


GS Paper  :  2


 

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

Recusal of Judges:


Context:

Justice Indira Banerjee has recused herself from hearing a petition filed by the families of two BJP activists killed allegedly in the post poll violence in West Bengal.

Background:

The petition alleged that there was “indiscriminate” killing of innocent people in West Bengal following the election results by the “vengeful” ruling party in the State.

What is Judicial Disqualification or Recusal?

Judicial disqualification, referred to as recusal, is the act of abstaining from participation in an official action such as a legal proceeding due to a conflict of interest of the presiding court official or administrative officer.

Grounds for Recusal:

  1. The judge is biased in favour of one party, or against another, or that a reasonable objective observer would think he might be.
  2. Interest in the subject matter, or relationship with someone who is interested in it.
  3. Background or experience, such as the judge’s prior work as a lawyer.
  4. Personal knowledge about the parties or the facts of the case.
  5. Ex parte communications with lawyers or non-lawyers.
  6. Rulings, comments or conduct.

Are there any laws in this regard?

There are no definite rules on recusals by Judges.

  • However, In taking oath of office, judges, both of the Supreme Court and of the high courts, promise to perform their duties, to deliver justice, “without fear or favour, affection or ill-will”.

What has the Supreme Court said on this?

Justice J. Chelameswar in his opinion in Supreme Court Advocates-on-Record Association v. Union of India (2015) held that “Where a judge has a pecuniary interest, no further inquiry as to whether there was a ‘real danger’ or ‘reasonable suspicion’ of bias is required to be undertaken”.

 

Insta Curious: 

Think: What if a judge fails to recuse themselves sua sponte and a party believes the judge has a bias?

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Grounds for Judicial Disqualification.
  2. Who administers oath to Supreme Court and High Court judges?
  3. Articles 127 and 128 of the Indian Constitution are related to?

Mains Link:

Recusal has become a selective call of morality for Supreme Court judges. Discuss.

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: RPA related issues.

How are poll results challenged, and when courts have set them aside?


Context:

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has filed an election petition in the Calcutta High Court challenging the Assembly election result of Nandigram constituency, where she had contested and lost.

What’s the issue?

She has sought that Suvendhu Adhikari’s election be declared void on grounds of corrupt practice and discrepancies in the counting procedure conducted by the Returning Officer.

What is an election petition?

Post results, an election petition is the only legal remedy available to a voter or a candidate who believes there has been malpractice in an election.

An election petition submitted to the High Court of the state in which the constituency is located.

Such a petition has to be filed within 45 days from the date of the poll results; nothing is entertained by courts after that.

Under Section 100 of the RP Act, an election petition can be filed on the grounds that:

  1. Section 123 of the RP Act has a detailed list of what amounts to corrupt practice, including bribery, use of force or coercion, appeal to vote or refrain from voting on grounds of religion, race, community, and language.
  2. Improper acceptance of the nomination of the winning candidate or improper rejection of a nomination.
  3. Malpractice in the counting process, which includes improper reception, refusal or rejection of any vote, or the reception of any vote which is void.
  4. Non-compliance with the provisions of the Constitution or the RP Act or any rules or orders made under the RP Act.

What happens if the court finds that a contention of malpractice is correct?

The verdict on an election petition, if found in favour of the petitioner, may result in a fresh election or the court announcing a new winner.

Famous examples:

  • There are many examples, the most famous being the Allahabad High Court verdict of 1975 which set aside Indira Gandhi’s election from Rae Bareli constituency, four years earlier, on grounds of corrupt practice.
  • Another high-profile case was that of Congress leader C P Joshi’s loss in the Rajasthan Assembly elections in 2008, by one vote.

 

Insta Curious: 

Do you know what Voter Caging is? Read Here(briefy)

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Key Provisions of RPA.
  2. Roles and powers of Returning Officer.
  3. Appeals against EC’s orders.

Sources: Indian Express.


GS Paper  :  3


 

Topics Covered: Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

Corporatization of ordnance factory board:


Context:

The Union Cabinet has approved a plan to corporatize the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB).

Ordnance Factory Board (OFB):

It is an umbrella body for the ordnance factories and related institutions, and is currently a subordinate office of the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

The first Indian ordnance factory was set up in the year 1712 by the Dutch Company as a GunPowder Factory, West Bengal.

  • OFBs will be responsible for different verticals of the products such as the Ammunition and Explosives group will be engaged in production of ammunition while a Vehicles group will engage in production of defence mobility and combat vehicles.

What Will Change?

According to the plan, the 41 companies will reportedly be grouped under the new entities that will function like any other existing defence public sector undertaking (DPSU) like Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) or Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL).

What Necessitated The Restructuring?

As per Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report on the ordnance factories:

  1. Production in factories continued to fall short of targets and that the various ordnance factories could achieve targets for only 49 per cent of items in 2017-18.
  2. A significant quantity of Army’s demand for some principal ammunition items remained outstanding as of 31 March 2018 which may adversely affect their operational preparedness.

Thus, inefficiencies in production and delays can be deemed to be a primary reason behind the overhaul of OFB.

Significance of new structure:

  1. The restructuring is aimed at transforming the ordnance factories into productive and profitable assets, deepen their specialisation in product range, enhance competitiveness and improve quality and cost-efficiency.
  2. The restructure would help in overcoming various shortcomings in the existing system of the OFB by eliminating inefficient supply chains and provide these companies incentive to become competitive and explore new opportunities in the market.
  3. It will allow these companies autonomy as well as help improve accountability and efficiency.

Concerns/Shortcomings of corporatization:

  1. Corporatisation would eventually lead to privatisation.
  2. The new corporate entities would not be able to survive the unique market environment of defence products that has very unstable demand and supply dynamics.
  3. Restructuring will result in greater autonomy and lesser government control over the corporation but there is a fear of job loss.

 

Insta Curious: 

Do you know the difference between Corporatization and Privatization? Read Here

 

Sources: the Hindu.

 

Topics Covered: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

Children and Digital Dumpsites report:


Context:

The new report, titled Children and Digital Dumpsites, was recently released by the WHO.

Key findings:

  • More than 18 million children and adolescents working at e-waste dumpsites in low- and middle-income countries are potentially at the risk of severe health hazards.
  • They face risk due to discarded electronic devices or e-waste being dumped from high-income countries.

What are the Concerns?

e-waste contains over 1,000 precious metals and other substances like gold, copper, mercury and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.

  1. The processing is done in low-income countries, which do not have proper safeguarding regulation and which makes the process even more dangerous.
  2. Children are especially preferred at these dumpsites because of their small and dexterous hands.
  3. Several women, including expectant mothers, also work there. Processing e-waste exposes them as well as their children to these toxins, which can lead to premature births and stillbirth.
  4. The hazardous impact of working at such sites is also experienced by families and communities that reside in the vicinity of these e-waste dumpsites.

Volume of water generated across the world:

The volume of e-waste generated is surging rapidly across the globe. About 53.6 million tonnes of e-waste was generated in 2019.

  • Only 17.4 per cent of this e-waste was processed in formal recycling facilities. The rest of it was dumped in low- or middle-income countries for illegal processing by informal workers.
  • This is likely to increase in the coming years because of the rise in the number of smartphones and computers.

What actually constitutes e-waste?

E-Waste is short for Electronic-Waste and the term is used to describe old, end-of-life or discarded electronic appliances. It includes their components, consumables, parts and spares.

Management of e- waste in India:

Laws to manage e-waste have been in place in India since 2011, mandating that only authorised dismantlers and recyclers collect e-waste. E-waste (Management) Rules, 2016 was enacted in 2017.

E-waste Generation in India:

According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), India generated more than 10 lakh tonnes of e-waste in 2019-20, an increase from 7 lakh tonnes in 2017-18. Against this, the e-waste dismantling capacity has not been increased from 7.82 lakh tonnes since 2017-18.

 

Insta Curious: 

Do you know the difference between Brown Goods and White Goods? Read Here

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is e- waste?
  2. E-waste (Management) Rules, 2016.
  3. About the Basel Convention.
  4. Other Conventions related to e waste management.

Mains Link:

Write a note on e-waste management in India.

Sources: Down to Earth.

 

Topics Covered: Conservation related issues.

Barrier to cyclone storms: Odisha plans to plant mangroves along its coast:


Context:

The Odisha government has proposed to raise mangrove and casuarinas plantation in the coastal belt.

  • Previously, the mangroves served as a natural barrier to cyclonic winds in Bhitarkanika National Park during Cyclone Yaas.

Background:

Odisha is vulnerable to various natural disasters like cyclone, flood, hailstorm, drought due to its unique geo-climatic condition.

What are Mangroves?

Mangroves occur worldwide in the tropics and subtropics, mainly between latitudes 30° N and 30° S, with the greatest mangrove area with 5° of the equator.

  • A mangrove is a shrub or small tree that grows in coastal saline or brackish water.
  • Mangroves are salt-tolerant trees, also called halophytes, and are adapted to live in harsh coastal conditions.
  • They contain a complex salt filtration system and complex root system to cope with salt water immersion and wave action.
  • They have blind roots which are called These roots help these trees to respire in anaerobic soils.
  • The seeds of Mangrove Forests trees germinate in the trees itself before falling – This is called Viviparity mode of reproduction.

Importance of Mangroves:

  1. Mangrove roots help to impede water flow and thereby enhance the deposition of sediment in areas (where it is already occurring), stabilise the coastal shores, provide a breeding ground for fishes.
  2. Mangroves moderate monsoonal tidal floods and reduce inundation of coastal lowlands.
  3. They prevent coastal soil erosion.
  4. They protect coastal lands from tsunami, hurricanes and floods.
  5. Mangroves enhance the natural recycling of nutrients.
  6. Mangrove supports numerous florae, avifauna and wildlife.
  7. Provide a safe and favourable environment for breeding, spawning, rearing of several fishes.
  8. They supply woods, firewood, medicinal plants and edible plants to local people.
  9. They provide numerous employment opportunities to local communities and augments their livelihood.

Additional information:

On World Environment Day, Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee announced that 50 million mangroves would be planted in the Sundarbans in the near future.

  • The mega mangrove plantation drive was taken up mainly to compensate for the plants’ loss during Cyclone Amphan.

 

Insta Curious: 

Have you heard about Black , Red and White Mangroves? Read Here

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About Mangroves.
  2. Conditions for their growth.
  3. Features.
  4. Mangroves in India and the world.
  5. Benefits of Mangroves.

Mains Link:

Discuss the significance of Mangroves.

Sources: Down to Earth.

 


Facts for Prelims:


Indian Certification of Medical Devices (ICMED) Plus Scheme:

Launched by Quality Council of India (QCI).

  • This is an upgraded ICMED Scheme that was launched for Certification of Medical Devices in 2016.
  • The ICMED 13485 PLUS, as the new scheme has been christened, will undertake verification of the quality, safety and efficacy of medical devices.

 

Gulf Of Aden:

Maiden Indian Navy – European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR) Exercise was held in Gulf Of Aden.

  • Gulf of Aden, also known as the Gulf of Berbera, is a deepwater gulf between Yemen to the north, the Arabian Sea to the east, Djibouti to the west, and the Guardafui Channel, Socotra (Yemen), and Somalia to the south.
  • In the northwest, it connects with the Red Sea through the Bab-el-Mandeb strait, and it connects with the Arabian Sea to the east. To the west, it narrows into the Gulf of Tadjoura in Djibouti.

Integrated Theatre Command:

An integrated theatre command envisages a unified command of the three Services, under a single commander, for geographical areas that are of strategic and security concern.

  • The commander of such a force will be able to bear all resources at his disposal — from the Army, the Indian Air Force, and the Navy — with seamless efficacy.
  • The integrated theatre commander will not be answerable to individual Services.
  • Integration and jointness of the three forces will avoid duplication of resources. The resources available under each service will be available to other services too.
  • The Shekatkar committee has recommended the creation of 3 integrated theatre commands — northern for the China border, western for the Pakistan border, and southern for the maritime role.

Why in News?

A high-level committee consisting of representatives from the services and the Ministries concerned has been formed for wider consultations on the creation of integrated triservice theatre commands.

 

Articles to be covered tomorrow:

  1. Sale of illegal HTBt cotton seeds doubles.

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