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[Mission 2023] INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY 1 September 2022

 

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:

1. Abysmal state of heritage conservation

 

GS Paper 2:

1. Only 16% of human trafficking cases in 2021 saw convictions

 

GS Paper 3:

1. Competitiveness Roadmap for India@100

 

Content for Mains Enrichment (Ethics/Essay)

1. Delhi virtual school

2. Festivals and connections with regions

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. Vedic Planetarium

2. China’s Xinjiang

3. WhatsApp privacy policy

4. Best Aspirational District

5. Progress on WASH in Healthcare facilities (2000-2021 Report)

6. Anti-radiation pills

7. Unemployment rate declines

8. EASENext Reforms

9. Anonymisation of Data (AoD)

10. One Herb One Standard

11. Project-75 India

12. International Counter Ransomware Initiative

13. Maps (in News)


 

Abysmal state of heritage conservation

GS Paper 1

Source: Indian Express

 

Context CAG’s performance audit on Preservation and Conservation of Monuments and Antiquities that was tabled in Parliament singled out the poor state of heritage conservation across India.

 

Issues Highlighted in the report:

      • Lack of proper National Policy: There is no national policy on archaeological exploration and excavation. The same is possibly true for antiquities.
      • Less allocation of Funds: The ASI budget for exploration and excavations is less than 1 per cent even though it intended to raise the allocation to 5 per cent of the total budget.
      • Lack of Coordination: There is no synergy between the different agencies involved in heritage conservation.
        • The National Culture Fund, established in November 1996, to rope in individuals and corporate groups to fund conservation, has utilised only 14 per cent of its funds because of the lack of coordination with the ASI. 
      • Violations of Various Provisions: The report reveals that the ASI, has been working in violation of the provisions of the Monuments (AMASR) Act.
        • At Humayun’s tomb, a CAG inspection revealed commercial construction being undertaken in the prohibited area by an “agency other than the ASI”.
      • Dumping of garbage and sewage: The auditing team’s visit revealed that sewage from nearby areas “was being discharged into many lakes”.

 

AMASR Act, 1958 is an act of parliament of the government of India that provides for the preservation of ancient and historical monuments and archaeological sites and remains of national importance, for the regulation of archaeological excavations and for the protection of sculptures, carvings and other like objects.

 

Insta Links:

AMASR Act

 

Mains Link:

Q. Safeguarding the Indian art heritage is the need of the moment. Discuss. (10M) (UPSC CSE 2018)

Prelims Link :

      • National Heritage
      • AMASR Act – recent changes

Only 16% of human trafficking cases in 2021 saw convictions

GS paper 2

Syllabus: Government policies and interventions for the development of various social sectors, Issues of human trafficking etc

 

Source: Indian Express

Directions: The data can be used as an example in mains in the overburdened judiciary. This is in continuation of the previous article two days back on NCRB data.

 

Context:

  • The conviction rate in human trafficking cases across the country continues to be low, according to the latest report of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).

 

Key Highlights:

      • Only 16 per cent saw convictions against cases registered under the Anti-Human Trafficking Units (AHTUs).
      • Data not available: The data on convictions was not available for 11 states and as many as eight states and three Union territories saw no convictions at all.
      • Top performer: The top performer was Jharkhand, which saw convictions in 84.2 per cent (Eighty-four point two) of the 92 cases that were registered in 2021.
      • Zero conviction: 11 states and Union territories reported zero convictions in 2021.
      • Highest trafficking cases: The highest number of trafficking cases was registered in Telangana (347 cases), Maharashtra (320 cases), and Assam (203 cases).
      • General dip in cases: Barring Telangana, all states saw a dip in cases in 2020, the first year of the pandemic which saw lockdowns.
      • Previous years: In 2020, only 10.6 per cent (ten point six) of the total cases saw convictions and in 2019 there were convictions in 22 per cent.

 

Human trafficking:

It is a form of modern-day slavery involving the illegal transport of individuals by force or deception for the purpose of labour, sexual exploitation, or activities in which others benefit financially.

 

Constitutional & legislative provisions related to Trafficking in India:

      • Article 23: Trafficking in Human Beings or Persons is prohibited under the Constitution of India under Article 23 (1).
      • The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956 (ITPA): It is the premier legislation for the prevention of trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation.
      • Section 370 and 370A of IPC: It provides for comprehensive measures to counter the menace of human trafficking including the trafficking of children for exploitation in any form including physical exploitation or any form of sexual exploitation, slavery, servitude, or the forced removal of organs.

 

Insta Links:

Human trafficking

NCRB

 

Mains Link:

Q. Though the Human Rights Commission have contributed immensely to the protection of human rights in India, yet they have failed to assert themselves against the mighty and powerful. Analyzing their structural and practical limitations, suggest remedial measures. (UPSC 2021)

 

Prelims Links:

      • Human trafficking
      • Article 23
      • NCRB
      • The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956 (ITPA)

Consider the following statements:

    1. Human trafficking is prohibited under the constitution of India.
    2. There is no law for prevention of trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

a. 1 only

b. 2 only

c. Both 1 and 2

d. Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: (a)

Justification:

Refer to the article above

Competitiveness Roadmap for India@100

GS Paper 3

Syllabus: Indian Economy/Governance

 

Source: PIB

Direction: Note down a few unique points e.g. 4S principle, other points are mostly common. No need to go in-depth into these academic reports.

 

Context:  Economic advisory council to PM and Institute for competitiveness has released “Roadmap for Better Growth- India @100”, to enable India to become a high-income country by 2047 using sector and region-specific policies based on the 4S principle:

      • Shared Prosperity: Opportunities should be shared across every section of society
        Social Prosperity: i.e. Economic Growth should match social development
      • Sustainable Prosperity: i.e. economic progress should be environmentally sustainable
      • Solid Prosperity: Economic system should be resilient to shocks

 

(How to remember it? Take this analogy: When you move into a new colony, you ‘Share’ something e.g. food or time, in order to ‘Socialise’. Constant socialization makes your friendship ‘Sustainable’ and in the longer term, this sustainable relation becomes ‘Solid’)

 

Challenges to India’s growth and sustainability:

      • Rising inequality
      • Low labour force participation (esp. for women)
      • Growth has not matched job creation (jobless growth)
      • Rising geopolitical and climate change issues

 

Solutions suggested by the report for 4S:

      • Structural Transformation 2.0: Creating new jobs using sector-specific and region-specific initiatives (e.g. PLI for different sectors, Mega food parks for different regions)
      • Convergence of programs and initiatives (including public-private participation)
      • Reduce social and institutional barriers for citizens (g. reducing discrimination in jobs, increasing safety for women, ease travelling experiences e.g. women given free transport in Delhi DTC buses)
      • Enable competition in the market (e.g. greater competition in e-commerce is profitable for citizens)

 

As per the World Bank classification of countries based on income level  (for GNI per capita in current USD)

 

Insta Links

Economic growth Vs Development

Mains Link

Q. “ Economic growth is a precondition for inclusive growth”, Do you agree? Analyse. (250 Words)

 

Prelims Link

Know the basic definition of growth, Development, how we measure them, and various indices for comparing growth and inclusiveness (e.g. MPI, Ginni coefficient)

With the reference of the Indian economy after the 1991 economic liberalization, consider the following statements: (UPSC 2020)

    1. Worker productivity (` per worker at 2004-05 prices) increased in urban areas while it decreased in rural areas.
    2. The percentage share of rural areas in the workforce steadily increased.
    3. In rural areas, the growth in non-farm economy increased.
    4. The growth rate in rural employment decreased.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 3 and 4 only

(c) 3 only

(d) 1, 2, and 4 only

Answer: B

After the LPG reforms of 1991, it is inevitable that the rural/agriculture workforce would start shifting towards urban/non-Agri sectors. So 2 is wrong and 3 is correct. The steady transition to urbanization over the years is leading to the decline in the rural share of the population, workforce and GDP of the country. 4 is correct.

 

Economic growth in country X will occur if (UPSC 2013)

(a) there is technical progress in the world economy

(b) there is population growth in X

(c) there is capital formation in X

(d) the volume of trade grows in the world economy

Answer: C

Capital Formation is defined as that part of a country’s current output and imports which is not consumed or exported during the accounting period but is set aside as an addition to its stock of capital goods. It shows a growing economy.

/ indian economy, Sep 1 CA, Today's Article

 

Content for Mains Enrichment (Essay/Ethics)


Delhi virtual school

Source: Indian Express

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Wednesday launched the Delhi Model Virtual School, which he said was India’s first, and said it will bring “revolutionary changes” in the field of education not only in the national capital but across the country.

Any student from India can apply on the website www.dmvs.ac.in and get enrolled.

The platform will also provide students access to a huge digital library, and the content will available 24×7. Apart from regular online classes, students will also be provided coaching for competitive exams, such as JEE and NEET, in classes 11 and 12.

This initiative will be one step closer to bringing education accessible to all and achieving SDG Goal 4 – Quality Education.

 

 

Festivals and connections with regions

Source: DownToEarth

Context: Indian festivals have always been connected with the natural resources which are present in those regions where they are celebrated. Modak, which is connected to Ganesh Chaturthi – The sweet and some of the recipes used in making it are quite old; its ingredients include some of the Deccan’s famous crops like ambemohur rice.

The modak’s preparation also shows its connections with the land, especially crops of the region.

On the ghats (inland areas), we have fried modaks which are made of wheat flour, sugar and coconut along with cardamom. But on the coast, there are steamed modaks made of rice flour. This is a special type of local sticky rice called the ambemohur. There is also jaggery and coconut. Hence, whatever is available is used

“There is a nutritional element too. It is a monsoon-friendly food. The word ‘modak’ is derived from the Sanskrit moda, meaning happiness or bliss,”.

 


Facts for Prelims


Vedic Planetarium

 Source: HindustanTimes

Context: The Vedic Planetarium Temple in Mayapur, West Bengal will soon become the world’s largest religious monument.

The purpose behind the construction of this temple is to make people aware of the Vedic culture. The temple is based on the vision of Acharya Prabhupada, the founder of ISKCON, which would help in the spread of Vedic knowledge in the world.

Special Blue Bolivian Marble has been used in the 380 feet high temple, which shows the influence of Western architecture in the temple.

Mayapur is also known as the Land of the Golden Avatar, this site is about 140 km from Calcutta. An incarnation of Lord Krishna (incarnation of Lord Vishnu), Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was born in this city in the year 1486. 

 

U.N. cites possible crimes against humanity in China’s Xinjiang

Source: The Hindu

Context: China’s discriminatory detention of Uyghurs and other mostly Muslim ethnic groups in the western region of Xinjiang may constitute crimes against humanity, the U.N. human rights office.

What does the report say?       

      • Urgent attention: The report seeks “urgent attention” from the UN. and the world community to rights violations in Beijing’s campaign to root out terrorism.
      • Patterns of torture: The report cites “patterns of torture” inside vocational training centres, pointing to “credible” allegations of torture or ill-treatment, including cases of sexual violence.
      • Arbitrary and discriminatory detention: The report warns that the “arbitrary and discriminatory detention” of such groups in Xinjiang, stripping away fundamental rights may constitute international crimes, in particular crimes against humanity.”
      • Reports of sharp increases in arrests and lengthy prison sentences: It strongly suggested a shift toward formal incarceration as the principal means for large-scale imprisonment and deprivation of liberty — instead of the use of the “vocational training centres”.

Uighur Muslims:

      • The Uighurs are a predominantly Muslim minority Turkic ethnic group, whose origins can be traced to Central and East Asia.
      • The Uighurs are considered to be one of the 55 officially recognized ethnic minority communities in China.
      • However, China recognises the community only as a regional minority and rejects that they are an indigenous group.
      • The largest population of the Uighur ethnic community lives in the Xinjiang region of China.

 

WhatsApp privacy policy

Directions: Can be used as an example in mains for breach of privacy by social media companies

Source: The Hindu

Context:

      • The Delhi High Court has held that WhatsApp’s 2021 privacy policy places its users in a “take it or leave it” situation.
      • They virtually forced users into an agreement by providing a mirage of choices and then sharing their data with its parent company Facebook.

 

What was the policy?

      • Takes away users’ choice: The policy essentially takes away the choice users had earlier to not share their data with other Facebook-owned and third-party apps.
      • Take it or Leave it’ Policy: If users disagree with the messaging platform’s updated privacy policy, they will have to quit WhatsApp when the new terms of service are set to come into effect.
      • Sharing of metadata: WhatsApp can share one’s metadata, essentially everything beyond the conversation’s actual text though the end-to-end encryption clause remains intact.

  

Best Aspirational District

Source: HindustanTimes

 Context: NITI Aayog has declared Haridwar city of Uttarakhand as the best aspirational district on the basis of five parameters.

The programme was launched in January 2018 and aims to quickly and effectively transform some of the most underdeveloped districts of the country.

 Broad Contours of the Programme:

      • Convergence(of Central & State Schemes)
      • Collaboration(of Central, State level ‘Prabhari’ Officers & District Collectors),
      • Competitionamong districts through monthly delta ranking

Parameters for Best Aspirational District: health and nutrition, education, financial inclusion and skill development, agriculture and water resources basic infrastructure

  

Progress on WASH in Healthcare facilities (2000-2021 Report)

Source: WHO

Direction: ‘WASH’ is important. Findings you can go through once.

Context: UNICEF and WHO released this report to see progress on WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) and linkages between WASH and infection prevention and control (IPC).

Key findings:

      • Nearly 4 bn people are at risk since over 50% of health facilities in the world lack basic hygiene services.
      • Achieving universal access to WASH in health care facilities requires political will and strong leadership at both national and facility levels
      • Achieving it is highly cost-effective and would yield substantial health benefits.
      • Universal basic WASH services could be achieved in 46 least developed countries (LDCs) by 2030 for less than US$10 billion.

The WHO and UNICEF release progress updates on WASH in households, WASH in schools and WASH in health care facilities every two years.

WHO’s WASH Strategy has been developed in response to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (SDG 3: Good Health and Well Being, SDG 6: Clean Water And Sanitation).

 

Anti-radiation pills

Source: Indian Express

Context: With fears of a nuclear disaster at Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia power plant growing, the European Union has decided to pre-emptively supply 5.5 million  (five point five million) anti-radiation pills to be distributed among residents in the vicinity.

      • Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said if there was a radiation emergency, people should take a Potassium Iodide drug that would help protect them from thyroid cancer.
      • They contain non-radioactive iodine and can help block absorption, and subsequent concentration, of radioactive iodine in the thyroid gland.

Working?

Potassium Iodide contains so much iodine that once taken, it makes the thyroid gland full of iodine and the gland doesn’t absorb more iodine (including radioactive ones) for the next 24 hours.

Unemployment rate declines

Source: Live Mint

Direction: Don’t worry about data, know the trend of increase and decrease and know the definition of basic terms.

Context: As per the NSO survey, the unemployment rate in India for people aged 15 years and above in urban areas declined to 7.6 per cent (seven points six) in April-June 2022 from 12.6 per cent (twelve points six) a year ago

Other findings:

      • Unemployment rate among females (aged 15 years and above) in urban areas declined to 9.5 per cent (nine point five) in April-June, 2022 from 14.3 per cent (fourteen point three) a year ago
      • Labour force participation rate in CWS (Current Weekly Status) in urban areas for persons aged 15 years and above increased to 47.5 per cent (forty-seven point five) in the April-June quarter of 2022, from 46.8 per cent (forty-six point eight)

About the data:

      • The latest data is based on a periodic labour force survey
      • It shows:
        • A decline in the unemployment rate
        • Improved labour force participation ratio
        • Sustained economic recovery from the shadow of the pandemic.

 

Unemployment rate is the percentage of the total labour force that is unemployed but actively seeking employment and willing to work.

LFPR: The labour force participation rate is the number of persons in the labour force as a percentage of the working-age population.

    • The labour force is the sum of the number of persons employed and the number of persons unemployed.

 

Related News

India’s GDP growth grew by 13.5% (thirteen point five) in the April-June period this fiscal — the fastest in the last four quarters — on account of better performance by the agriculture and services sectors.

 

EASENext Reforms

Source:

Direction: No need to remember 1.0, 2.0… just know, it’s there. For mains answer writing know the keyword “CLEAN and SMART banking”.

 Context: Public Sector Bank’s performance (PSB) has been reviewed under EASENext reforms (currently Ease 5.0) (launched in June 2022) by the Finance Ministry

Nodal Agency: Indian Bank’s Association (IBA)

 

About Ease Reforms:

EASE (Enhanced Access and Service Excellence) is a reform agenda for PSBs for CLEAN and SMART Banking. (see image)

      • Launched in January 2018 jointly by the government and PSBs
      • Ease 1.0: the resolution of NPA
      • Ease 2.0: Responsible banking, financial inclusion and digitalization
      • Ease 3.0: Dial-a-loan, Credit@click, PSBloansin59 minutes.com
      • Ease 4.0: 24X7 banking, focus on north-east, bad banks

 

Anonymisation of Data (AoD)

Source:

Context: MeitY has recently released guidelines on AoD for e-Governance and Mobile security

What is AoD?

Data anonymization is the process of protecting private or sensitive information by erasing or encrypting identifiers that connect an individual to stored data.

Benefits:

AoD makes the data (which is no longer personal data) suitable for use in research and data mining.

It enhances privacy, confidentiality, the integrity of data, authentication and accountability.

 

One Herb One Standard (OHOS)

Source: Business-Standards

Direction: So many ‘One this One that’ schemes have come up in recent times. Not all are relevant. Go through it once. 

 Context: In order to facilitate the development of harmonized Herbal drug standards for different types of medical systems- Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and Homoeopathy.

PCIM&H (Ministry of Ayush)  and the Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission (IPC, under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) aim to remove this ambiguity.

      • Pharmacopoeia Commission for Indian Medicine and Homoeopathy (PCIM&H) is engaged in the development of Pharmacopoeial Standards for Ayurvedic, Unani, Siddha & Homeopathic drugs.
      • Pharmacopoeia is an official publication containing a list of medicinal drugs with their effects and directions for their use.

 

Project-75 India (P75-I)

Direction: Know the basic principle of floatation, the basic aim of the P-75 project and what is Air independent propulsion system.

Context: Citing difficult to fulfil conditions set in the request for Proposal (RFP), previously Russia pulled out of the P-75I project ( for the construction of 6 advanced submarines )

What is the P-75 Project?

      • It is part of the Indian Navy’s 30-year Plan for indigenous submarine construction- P-75 (1st Phase) and P-75I (2nd phase)
      • P-75 ( signed in 2005): to build 6 Scorpene class (diesel-electric) submarines (contract signed between India and France)

What is the P-75I project?

Project 75-I (approved in 2007) is 2nd phase of the Indian Navy’s 30-year Plan for indigenous submarine construction.

It envisages the indigenous construction of 6 modern conventional submarines with:

      • Non-nuclear or diesel-electric engine
      • Contemporary equipment, weapons & sensors
      • Fuel-Cell based AIP (Air Independent Propulsion)
      • Advanced torpedoes and modern missiles

It is also the first programme to be progressed under the Strategic Partnership concept which offers a level-playing field to the private sector.

Why countries have Pulled out?

The conditions put in Transfer of technology, stealth technology, construction in India as well as Air Independent Propulsion System were very much advanced and no prototype of it is available of it yet.

      • Previously, Sweden, France and Germany had also pulled out of the project.

 

Air-independent propulsion (AIP)

Any maritime propulsion system that permits a non-nuclear submarine to function without exposure to atmospheric oxygen (by surfacing out or by utilising a snorkel) is known as air-independent propulsion (AIP), or air-independent power.

      • Normally, Diesel submarines need to come to the surface to recharge their batteries and get a fresh supply of atmospheric oxygen.

 

International Counter Ransomware Initiative

Source: PIB

Context: CERT-In hosts Cyber Security Exercise “Synergy” for 13 countries as part of the International Counter Ransomware Initiative- Resilience Working Group, which is being led by India under the leadership of National Security Council Secretariat(NSCS).

Aim: It aims to exchange best practices among Member-States to build network resiliency against ransomware & cyber extortion attacks

The Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN or ICERT) is an office within the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology of the Government of India.

      • It is the nodal agency to deal with cyber security threats like hacking and phishing.

Other initiatives for Cybersecurity:

      • Budapest Convention on Cybercrime (address Internet and cybercrime by harmonizing national laws. .India is not a signatory to this convention)
      • Cyber Surakshit Bharat Yojana (2018, includes awareness programs on cyber security)
      • Cyber Swachhta Kendra (Botnet Cleaning and Malware Analysis Centre
      • Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre(I4C, 2018):To combat cybercrime in India (under the Ministry of Home Affairs)

Ransomware is a type of malware that threatens to publish the victim’s personal data or permanently block access to it unless a ransom is paid.  (e.g. WannaCry, Petya, Locky)

 


Maps ( in News)



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