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.
Table of Contents:
GS Paper 1:
GS Paper 2:
GS Paper 3:
Facts for Prelims:
1. The Kanwar Yatra.
2. Kongu Nadu.
3. What is chemotaxis?
GS Paper : 1
Topics Covered: Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism.
Cabinet approves Extension of term of the commission constituted under Article 340 of the constitution to examine the issue of Sub-categorization within other Backward Classes in the Central List.
- National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) proposed the sub-categorisation of Other Backward Classes (OBCs) back in 2015.
- In October 2017, President Ram Nath Kovind, in exercise of the powers conferred by Article 340 of the Constitution, appointed a commission to examine the issue of sub-categorisation of OBCs, chaired by retired Justice G. Rohini, to ensure social justice in an efficient manner by prioritising the Extremely Backward Classes (EBCs).
What is Article 340?
- It lays down conditions for the appointment of a Commission to investigate the conditions of the backward classes.
- The President may by order appoint a Commission consisting of such persons as he thinks fit to investigate the conditions of socially and educationally backward classes within the territory of India.
- Article 14 of the Constitution guarantees equality before the law. That means un-equals cannot be treated equally. Measures are required to be taken for the upliftment of un-equals to bring them on par with the advanced classes.
- Article 16 (4) provides that the State can make any provision for the reservation of appointments or posts in favour of any backward class of citizens who, in the opinion of the state, are not adequately represented in the services under the State.
Need for sub- categorization:
Sub categorization of the OBCs will ensure that the more backward among the OBC communities can also access the benefits of reservation for educational institutions and government jobs.
- At present, there is no sub-categorisation and 27% reservation is a monolithic entity.
Did you know that Recommendation for OBC quota in central govt institutions was implemented in 1992 while education quota came into force in 2006? Read about the whole movement here,
- Overview of Articles 340, 14, 15 and 16.
- Head of the commission to examine the issue of sub-categorisation of OBCs.
- President‘s power under Article 340.
- Mandal Commission.
- Powers to include or exclude communities from the central list of OBCs.
- States powers to categorise OBCs.
Discuss the need for sub- categorisation of OBCs.
Sources: the Hindu.
GS Paper : 2
Topics Covered: Indian Constitution- historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
Lt Governor Manoj Sinha has dismissed 11 Jammu and Kashmir government employees for alleged terror links under provisions of Article 311(2)(c) of the Constitution.
Article 311 of the Constitution deals with ‘Dismissal, removal or reduction in rank of persons employed in civil capacities under the Union or a State’.
- Article 311(2): no civil servant can be “dismissed or removed or reduced in rank except after an inquiry in which he has been informed of the charges and given a reasonable opportunity of being heard in respect of those charges’’.
- Article 311(2)(a): The safeguard of an inquiry also does not apply in cases of conviction on a criminal charge.
- Article 311(2)(b): The safeguard of an inquiry also does not apply “where the authority is satisfied that for some reason, to be recorded by that authority in writing, it is not reasonably practicable to hold such inquiry”.
- Article 311(2)(c): It also shall not apply “where the President or the Governor, as the case may be, is satisfied that in the interest of the security of the State it is not expedient to hold such inquiry”.
The only available remedy to terminated employees is to challenge the government’s decision in the High Court.
Do you know what the Doctrine of Pleasure is? Read Here
- About Article 311(2).
- Safeguards available to civil servants under the constitution.
Write a note on safeguards provided to civil servants under the constitution.
Sources: Indian Express.
GS Paper : 3
Topics Covered: Infrastructure.
The scheme was approved by the cabinet recently.
Highlights of the scheme:
- The scheme seeks to provide Rs.1624 crore over five years as a subsidy to Indian Shipping companies in global tenders floated by Ministries and CPSEs for import of government cargo.
- The budgetary support would be provided directly to the Ministry/Department concerned.
- The subsidy support would be extended only to those ships which have bagged the award after the implementation of the scheme.
- Flexibility in the allocation of funds for expenditure from one year to another and within the various Ministries/Departments of the scheme.
- Ships older than 20 years would not be eligible for any subsidy.
Significance of the scheme:
- Potential to generate employment: Increase in Indian fleet will provide direct employment to Indian seafarers since Indian ships are required to employ only Indian seafarers.
- Cadets wishing to become seafarers are required to obtain on-board training on ships. Indian ships will therefore provide training slots for young Indian cadet boys and girls.
- This shall enhance the share of Indian seafarers in global shipping, and thus Indian supply of Seafarers to the world will increase manifold.
- The increase in Indian fleet will also generate indirect employment in development of ancillary industries such as shipbuilding, ship repair, recruitment, banking, etc. and contribute to the Indian GDP.
Need for these measures:
Despite having a 7,500 km long coastline, a significant national EXIM trade that is steadily growing on an annual basis, a policy of 100% FDI in shipping since 1997 and Indian shipping industry and India’s national fleet is proportionately small when compared with its global counterparts.
- Currently the Indian fleet comprises a meagre 1.2% of the world fleet in terms of capacity.
- The share of Indian ships in the carriage of India’s EXIM trade has drastically declined from 40.7% in 1987-88 to about 7.8% in 2018-19.
- This has led to an increase in foreign exchange outgo on account of freight bill payments to foreign shipping companies.
Do you know about the Hong Kong Convention for Ship Recycling? Read here
- Key features of the scheme.
- Benefits and eligibility.
Discuss the significance of the scheme.
Topics Covered : Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
Ultraviolet-C or UV-C Disinfection Technology will soon be installed in Parliament for the “mitigation of airborne transmission of SARS-COV-2’’.
About the UV-C air duct disinfection system:
- Developed by CSIR-CSIO (Central Scientific Instruments Organisation).
- The system is designed to fit into any existing air-ducts and the virucidal dosages using UV-C intensity and residence time can be optimised according to the existing space.
- The virus is deactivated in any aerosol particles by the calibrated levels of UV-C light.
- It can be used in auditoriums, malls, educational Institutions, AC buses, and in railways.
What is UV radiation?
UV radiation is the portion of the Electromagnetic spectrum between X-rays and visible light.
The most common form of UV radiation is sunlight, which produces three main types of UV rays:
- UVA rays have the longest wavelengths, followed by UVB, and UVC rays which have the shortest wavelengths.
- While UVA and UVB rays are transmitted through the atmosphere, all UVC and some UVB rays are absorbed by the Earth’s ozone layer. So, most of the UV rays you come in contact with are UVA with a small amount of UVB.
How is it being used?
UV radiations are normally used to kill microorganisms.
- Particularly, UV-C, also known as Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) is a disinfection method that uses short-wavelength ultraviolet light to kill or inactivate microorganisms by destroying their nucleic acids and disrupting their DNA, leaving them unable to perform vital cellular functions and stops their replication.
- UVGI is used in a variety of applications, such as food, air, and water disinfection.
Is it safe for humans?
Researchers noted that the device was specifically developed to disinfect non-living things. Therefore, UV-C radiation used in this device could be harmful to the skin and eyes of the living beings.
Are all lamps that produce UVC radiation the same? What are the different types of lamps that can produce UVC radiation? Read Here
- Overview of electromagnetic spectrum.
- About UV Rays.
Sources: Indian Express.
Topics Covered: Conservation related issues.
The European Union has unveiled some of the world’s most ambitious proposals, titled “Fit for 55”, to reduce carbon emissions and wean its 27 members off fossil fuels.
- These measures are a EU’s roadmap to achieve its target to reduce emissions by 55% by 2030, compared with 1990 levels.
The roadmap includes:
It takes particular aim at transport, both personal and commercial, across the block.
- Cars with combustion engines, for example, would not be produced within the bloc from 2035.
- Financial incentives would be offered to countries that replace traditional fuel with a sustainable alternative in aviation and maritime transportation.
- Minimum tax rate for petrol and gasoline fuels would be increased by significant margins, as would tax on kerosene.
- The proposed carbon border would place tariffs on certain goods produced outside the bloc, depending on their carbon footprint, subjecting them to the same standards that already exist for goods produced within the EU.
- The plan is to discourage EU companies from importing cheaper materials from places where environmental standards are lower.
Lowering of the cap in the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS):
- Created in 2005, the ETS works by placing a cap on the carbon emissions companies within the EU are allowed to produce each year.
- If a company goes over, they are fined. They can also buy “allowances” from others in the ETS, roll over unused allowances.
- Spur sustainable economic growth
- Create jobs.
- Deliver health and environmental benefits for EU citizens.
- contribute to the long-term global competitiveness of the EU economy by promoting innovation in green technologies.
Challenges in implementation:
- Some member states are poorer than others, meaning the transition to Brussels’ goals are harder, while other member states have economies built on industries that by their nature produce more emissions.
- It will also be politically difficult, as member states are currently divided on many other pan-European issues — from rule of law to human rights — and will likely use this debate on climate change as a proxy for other ongoing rows.
- Experts say, although it is technologically and economically possible to implement these policies earlier, in this form, the Green Deal will not be enough to limit global warming to 1.5C.
- Even if the EU becomes carbon neutral, other developing countries will rapidly increase their emissions.
Previously, how has the European Union responded to climate change?
- EU countries have set binding emission targets for key sectors of the economy to substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- By 2017, the EU had reduced its emissions by almost 22% compared to 1990, reaching its 2020 emission reduction target three years ahead of schedule.
Why has climate change now become a global challenge?
The current changes in the planet’s climate are transforming the world.
- The last two decades included 18 of the warmest years on record, and extreme weather events, such as forest fires, heatwaves and floods, are becoming more frequent both in Europe and elsewhere.
- Scientists warn that without urgent action, global warming is likely to exceed 2°C above pre-industrial levels by 2060, and could even reach as much as 5°C by the end of the century.
- Such a rise in the global temperature will have a devastating impact on nature, bringing about irreversible changes to many ecosystems and a consequent loss of biodiversity.
- Higher temperatures and intensified weather events will also result in huge costs for the EU’s economy and hamper countries’ ability to produce food.
Need of the hour:
The European Union accounts for around 8% of the world’s carbon emissions from fossil fuels. Containing rising temperatures will need firm action from bigger economies, including the US and China, the world’s two biggest carbon emitters.
Do you know what Asian Brown Cloud is? Read Here
- Overview of the targets.
- Such initiatives by EU and other developed nations.
- What is the Paris Agreement?
Discuss the significance of climate targets set by the EU.
Sources: Indian Express.
Topics Covered: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.
Karnataka Government is planning to recruit 206 ‘scene of crime officers’ (SoC officers) across the state.
Who are they?
- Scene of Crime officers will have a rank equivalent to police sub-inspector and will be part of the Directorate of Forensic Science Laboratories.
- The SoC officers will specialise in forensic science as well in identification, collection and preservation of evidence at the scene of the crime.
- These officers will be trained investigators, who will undergo training at National Forensic Sciences University in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, and Central Forensic Science Laboratory in Hyderabad.
- According to the initial plans by the police department, all districts will have one SoC unit with four to five SoC officials.
According to the Karnataka police, this is the first time in the country that dedicated officials will be deployed for evidence collection, a system that exists in advanced countries.
- In 1961 in London, the first crime scene officer post was created.
Sources: Indian Express.
Facts for Prelims:
The Kanwar Yatra:
- It is a pilgrimage organised in the Hindu calendar month of Shravana (Saavan).
- Saffron-clad Shiva devotees generally walk barefoot with pitchers of holy water from the Ganga or other holy rivers. The water is used by the pilgrims to worship Shiva lingas at shrines of importance.
- Devotees carry the pitchers of holy water on their shoulders, balanced on decorated slings known as
- In the Gangetic plains, the water is taken from pilgrimage sites such as Haridwar, Gaumukh and Gangotri in Uttarakhand, Sultanganj in Bihar, and Prayagraj, Ayodhya or Varanasi from Uttar Pradesh.
- An important festival with similarities to the Kanwar yatra in North India, called the Kavadi festival, is celebrated in Tamil Nadu, in which Lord Muruga is worshipped.
- ‘Kongu Nadu’ is neither a place with a PIN code nor a name given formally to any region. It is a commonly used name for part of western Tamil Nadu.
- In Tamil literature, it was referred to as one of the five regions of ancient Tamil Nadu.
- There were mentions of ‘Kongu Nadu’ in Sangam literature as a separate territory.
- The name derives from Kongu Vellala Gounder, an OBC community with a significant presence in these districts.
What is chemotaxis?
Chemotaxis in microbiology refers to the migration of cells toward attractant chemicals or away from repellents.
- Somatic cells, bacteria, and other single-cell or multicellular organisms direct their movements according to certain chemicals in their environment.
- This is important for bacteria to find food (e.g., glucose) by swimming toward the highest concentration of food molecules, or to flee from poisons (e.g., phenol).
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