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[Mission 2023] INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY 5 April 2023

 

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 ina 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 2:

  1. India Justice Report 2022

 

GS Paper 3:

  1. Why India should cut down on its salt intake
  2. U.N. water conference
  3. India could become the world’s 2nd-largest solar PV manufacturer by 2026

 

GS Paper 4:

  1. NMC guidelines on professional responsibilities of students, teachers

 

Content for Mains Enrichment (CME)

  1. Mahila Nidhi
  2. Himachal Pradesh Sukh Ashraya Bill 2023
  3. J&K: Give plastic, take gold

 

Facts for Prelims (FFP) 

  1. Bhagwan Mahavir
  2. Rare earth elements found in Andhra Pradesh
  3. Lokpal
  4. India slams OIC
  5. Trade in Rupee
  6. Manufacturing PMI
  7. Anti-dumping probe into import of sodium cyanide
  8. Drug-resistant bacteria strain
  9. Artificial meteor showers could soon be a reality: Report

 

India Justice Report 2022

GS Paper 2

 Syllabus: Structure, Organization and Functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary

 

Source: TH

 

Context: According to the India Justice Report (IJR) 2022 (3rd edition), the State of Karnataka emerged at the top among the 18 large and mid-sized States with populations of over one crore.

 

Background:

  • The Report (initiated by Tata Trusts in 2019) is a first-of-its-kind national periodic report that ranks the capacity of states to deliver justice.
  • It assesses the capacity of 4 core pillars of the justice system:
    • Police,
    • Prisons,
    • Judiciary and
    • Legal aid across all 36 states and UTs.
  • Each pillar was analyzed through the prism of budgets, human resources, workload, diversity, infrastructure and trends against the state’s own declared standards and benchmarks.
  • The Report is a collaborative effort undertaken in partnership with DAKSH, Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy, TISS-Prayas, etc.
  • The IJR 2022 also separately assesses the capacity of the 25 State Human Rights Commissions in the country.

 

The IJR 2022:

 

  • The State of UP is at the lowest rank (18th) among mid-sized and large States (population > 1 crore), while the State of Goa is at the lowest rank (7th) among the small States with a (population < 1 crore).

Significance: The report brings together otherwise siloed data on the 4 pillars of Justice delivery.

 

Nations deficits:

 

 

Recommendations:

 

Insta Links: Justice Delivery System

Why India should cut down on its salt intake

GS Paper 2

Syllabus: Issues Relating to Development and Management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health

 

Source: TH

 Context: Excessive sodium (salt) intake contributes to the rise of hypertension, heart disease and stroke.

 

Why is it essential to reduce sodium intake?

  • Salt reduction is a cost-effective and practical approach to preventing cardiovascular disease (the foremost cause of mortality worldwide).
    • Reduced sodium intake → decreased blood pressure → decrease in stroke and heart attack incidences.
  • Staggering economic impact of cardiovascular disease on low- and middle-income countries: ~2% of the GDP of LMICs due to premature mortality and disability.

 

India Scenario: Average sodium consumption is more than double the physiological need and exceeds the WHO’s recommended daily intake of <5 g of salt for adults.

Global EffortsChallenges
●       The WHO’s “Global Report on Sodium Intake Reduction” report details the 194 member states’ efforts toward a 30% reduction in (population) sodium intake by 2025.

●       The WHO devised a sodium score, ranging from 1 (least) to 4 (highest implementation), based on the extent of implementation of sodium reduction measures.

With only a few countries making considerable headway, there is a proposal to extend the deadline from 2025 to 2030.

 

India Effort
●       The Union government has initiated several voluntary programmes aimed at encouraging Indians to decrease their sodium consumption.

●       Eat Right India’s movement: FSSAI strives to transform the nation’s food system to ensure secure, healthy, and sustainable nutrition for all citizens.

●       Aaj Se Thoda Kam: A social campaign launched by FSSAI.

 

●       Cardiovascular diseases have emerged as the primary cause of mortality and morbidity.

○       The WEF projects that the Indian economy faces losses surpassing $2 trillion between 2012 and 2030 due to such diseases.

●       Hypertension has been identified as the leading risk factor for such diseases.

○       More prevalent among men aged 15 and above compared to women.

○       More common in southern States.

○       Circulatory system diseases account for 32.1% of all documented deaths, with hypertension being a major risk factor.

●       The pre-hypertensive population warrants attention.

●       India’s score of 2 (in the WHO’s sodium score) signifies the presence of at least one voluntary policy, emphasizing the need for more rigorous efforts to address this health concern.

 

Way ahead:

  • India needs a comprehensive national strategy to curb salt consumption.
  • A multi-pronged approach, engaging consumers, industry, and the government, is crucial.
  • Collaboration between State and Union governments is essential to combat hypertension.

 

Insta Links:

Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA)

U.N. water conference

GS Paper 3

 Syllabus: Environment Conservation

 

Source: TH

 Context: Recently, The United Nations 2023 Water Conference was held in New York (the first such meeting on water after 46 years). Also, a mid-term review of the UN Decade for Action on Water and Sanitation (2018-2028)  was held at the conference.

 

About the Conference:

UN 2023 Water ConferenceDescription
Theme“Our watershed moment: uniting the world for water”
AimSupport the achievement of internationally agreed water-related goals and targets, including those contained in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
LocationUN Headquarters in New York
HostsUSA, Tajikistan, and the Netherlands
BackgroundThis is 2nd such water conference the first being held in 1977 in Mar de Plata, Argentina
Successful Outcomes of the Last Conference (Mar de Plata)·        It resulted in the first global ‘Action Plan’ recognizing that “all peoples have the right to have access to drinking water in quantities and of a quality equal to their basic needs.”

·        It led to global funding and a concerted effort to provide drinking water and sanitation for all.

·        These actions substantially reduced the population without access to safe drinking water in much of the developing world.

 

World Water Day22 March 2023, with the theme “Accelerating change”
SDG no. 6 for waterEnsure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

 

Also, read the recently released UN World Water Development Report 2023

 

Outcome of the Water Conference: The Water Action Agenda contains over 700 voluntary commitments. Some of them have been given here with examples:

OutcomesExamples
India$50-billion commitment to improving rural drinking water services under its Jal Jeevan Mission.
TechnologyIBM Sustainability Accelerator focused on water management
Data and modelsWorld Meteorological Organisation’s Hydrological Status and Outlook System, offered data analysis tools.
Knowledge sharingW12+ Blueprint, a UNESCO platform that hosts city profiles and case studies of programs (for cross cities learning)
Capacity building·        Making Rights Real initiative offered to help marginalised communities and women understand how to exercise their rights.

·        Water for Women Fund offered support mechanisms for more effective and sustainable water, sanitation, and hygiene outcomes for women.

Civil societyIt pledged to create transnational networks to advocate for criminalizing the use of certain pesticides harmful to aquatic life.
Environmental, social, and corporate governanceFarmers aren’t becoming more efficient or going pesticide-free unless consumers are willing to pay a premium for more sustainably produced goods.
Private SectorWorld Benchmarking Alliance has pledged to assess 1,000 global companies across 22 industries on their impact towards achieving water-related goals every two years.
NGOsWorld Vision is committed to raising and investing $2 billion by 2030 to extend the impact of transformative water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services work across 50 countries in six regions.

 

 

Issues with these commitments:

  • They are non-binding in nature.
  • The water action agenda did not include the local communities for water management.
  • The conference failed to address the violence and threats faced by communities trying to protect dwindling water sources.

 

Insta Links

 

Mains Links:

How and to what extent would micro-irrigation help in solving India’s water crisis? (UPSC 2021)

 

Prelims links

 On the planet Earth, most of the freshwater exists as ice caps and glaciers. Out of the remaining freshwater, the largest proportion (UPSC 2013)

 

(a) is found in the atmosphere as moisture and clouds

(b) is found in freshwater lakes and rivers

(c) exists as groundwater

(d) exists as soil moisture

 

Ans: C

NMC guidelines on professional responsibilities of students, teachers

GS Paper 4

 Syllabus: Code of Conduct and Code of Ethics

 

Source: TH

Context: The Indian regulatory body for medical education and medical professionals, the National Medical Council, has for the first time issued a set of guidelines specifying the professional responsibilities of medical students, teachers and institutions. 

Aspect of the guidelinesGuidelines for StudentsGuidelines for TeachersGuidelines for Institutions
Ensuring ethical practiceBe diligent in studies and research work. Maintain professionalism in interactions with colleagues and patients. Seek help when neededBe competent, caring, and ethical role models.Avoid giving false information during inspections and accreditation processes.
Promoting professionalismMaintain a responsible and respectful attitude towards the profession, colleagues, and patientsGuide and mentor students. Maintain appropriate boundaries in interactionsDo not pressure teachers to give false information.
Addressing social issuesDiscrimination based on sexual orientation, gender, or socioeconomic class should not be toleratedDo not discriminate against studentsAdopt no discrimination policy
Enhancing doctor-patient relationshipEthical Conduct in Interactions with Patients– N/A– N/A
Improving medical educationProvide a conducive learning environment for studentsEnsure appropriate training for teachersPromote transparency and accountability

About NMC

 National Medical Commission (NMC) (est. 2020; HQ: New Delhi; Under Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) is an Indian regulatory body of 33 members which regulates medical education and medical professionals. It replaced the Medical Council of India in September 2020.

Purpose: The Commission grants recognition of medical qualifications, gives accreditation to medical schools, grants registration to medical practitioners, monitors medical practice and assesses the medical infrastructure in India.

India could become the world’s 2nd-largest solar PV manufacturer by 2026

GS Paper 3

Syllabus: Energy

 

Source: TH

 Context: According to a new report, India will become self-sufficient and will be the 2nd-largest photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing country after China by 2026.

 

Highlights of the report:

  • 110 gigawatts (GW) of solar PV module capacity is set to come online in India in the next three years
  • India’s cumulative module manufacturing capacity more than doubled from 18GW in March 2022 to 38GW in March 2023.
  • In terms of upcoming PV manufacturing installations, Gujarat (accounts for nearly 57%) is the leading state in India, due to cheaper industrial electricity prices and easy access to ports for imports/exports.

 

Initiatives taken by the Indian govt: A favourable policy environment like the Production linked incentive (PLI) scheme.

 

Challenges for India:

  • Policy instability
  • To compete for dominance in both quality and scale in the global PV module market
  • Reliance on China for upstream components of PV modules such as polysilicon and ingots/wafers
  • A dearth of skilled manpower
  • India’s current major PV export markets (U.S. and Europe) are ramping up their own PV manufacturing capabilities.

 

Lessons to be learnt from China:

  • China has already achieved economies of scale by offering policy support – cheap credit, free land, cheap loans, research funds, tax rebates, etc.
  • Chinese manufacturers are able to absorb larger shares of the profit of their operational revenues → invest significantly in a robust R&D infrastructure → stay ahead of the rest of the world.

 

Recommendations:

  • For holistic development, the government must augment the PLI scheme to also include more upstream components.
  • India must aim to build enough PV capacity to satisfy local demand and maintain a healthy global presence to become a viable competitor to Chinese PV products.
  • There must be a greater impetus to explore other export markets for Indian tier-1 manufacturers.

Mahila Nidhi

Content for Mains Enrichment (CME)

Source: TH

Context: Rajasthan government has approved a proposal for giving an 8% interest subsidy on loans obtained by the members of women’s self-help groups (SHGs) from Mahila Nidhi, the State’s first-ever women’s cooperative fund. 

 

Formation: Mahila Nidhi was established in Jaipur in August 2022 and is operated entirely by women and acts as a complementary body with the formal banking system.

  • It has been set up on the pattern of Telangana’s Stree Nidhi Credit Cooperative Federation

 

Fund: It disburses loans up to ₹40,000 within 48 hours and releases the credit of a higher amount within a period of 15 days.

 

Success: It has significantly brought down the number of loan applications by women pending in the banks, as they have been getting easy and adequate loans for their daily needs and self-employment from the fund.

Himachal Pradesh Sukh Ashraya Bill 2023

Content for Mains Enrichment (CME)

Source: TH

Context: The Himachal Pradesh government is planning to introduce the Himachal Pradesh Sukh Ashraya (Care, Protection and Self Reliance of Children) Bill, 2023 in the State Assembly.

 

Aim:

  • Providing appropriate care, protection, development, and self-reliance to orphans, semi-orphans, and specially-abled children in need.
  • Provisions for clothing and festival allowance to children residing in child care and aftercare institutions, intra or intra-state annual exposure visits for these children.
  • Provide recurring deposit accounts for each child with contributions from the State government up to the age of 27 years

J&K: Give plastic, take gold

Content for Mains Enrichment (CME)

Source: TH

 Context: Sadiwara, a village in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district, has launched an innovative and eco-friendly initiative called ‘Give Plastic and Take Gold’.

 

About: The schemes offer a gold coin as a reward to anyone who collects 20 quintals of plastic waste.

 

Impact: Within 15 days of starting the campaign, the village was declared plastic-free. The initiative has gained popularity and has been adopted by other panchayats as well.

 

Values: The initiative is innovative, unique, environment-friendly, community-led and participative.

Rare earth elements found in Andhra Pradesh

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: ET

 

Context: Hyderabad-based National Geophysical Research Institute has found large deposits of 15 rare earth elements (REE) in Andhra Pradesh’s Anantapur district.

About Rare Earth MetalDescription
DefinitionRare Earth Metals are a set of 17 metallic elements, including the 15 lanthanides and scandium and yttrium.
NameThey are called “rare earth” because they occur in low concentrations of minerals and were difficult to extract from their oxide forms.
PropertiesThey have unique magnetic, luminescent, and electrochemical properties and are used in many modern technologies. They are all metals having many similar properties, and that often causes them to be found together in geologic deposits
India’s statusIndia has 6% of the world’s rare earth reserves, but it only produces 1% of global output and imports most of its needs from China
China’s Monopoly China produces 60% of the world’s rare earth
Authority in IndiaMining and processing of rare earth in India are concentrated in the hands of IREL (India) Limited, a PSU under the Department of Atomic Energy.
Related Steps Taken 

Globally: Multilateral Minerals Security Partnership (MSP) (est. 2022) by various countries (US, Canada, Australia, South Korea, EU, Japan, etc) (not India) to build robust critical minerals supply chains needed for climate objectives.

 

India: Amendment in the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act in 2021 (no mine will be reserved for a particular end-use)

Lokpal

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: TH

 

Context: A parliamentary panel report has pointed out that Lokpal disposed of 68% of corruption complaints against public servants without any action in the last 4 years.

 

Other findings:

  • Only three complaints were fully investigated
  • Nearly 90% of complaints were not “in the prescribed format and hence rejected
  • The Lokpal has not prosecuted even a single person accused of graft to date.

 

India slams OIC

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: TH

 

Context: Ministry of External Affairs has hit out at the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), condemning its comments on the recent violence during the Ram Navami processions in different parts of the country.

About OIC

The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (est. 1969, Jeddah (Saudi Arabia)) is an intergovernmental organization, consisting of 57 member states (India is not a member), with 48 being Muslim-majority countries. The OIC claims to be the “collective voice of the Muslim world

Trade in Rupee

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: The Hindu

 

Context: The Ministry of External Affairs announced that India and Malaysia have agreed to settle trade in the Indian rupees.

  • The announcement came in the backdrop of ongoing official efforts to Safeguard Indian trade from the impact of the Ukraine crisis.
  • It indicates India is willing to take concrete steps towards the de-dollarisation of its international trade.

Benefits:

  • This mechanism will allow the Indian and Malaysian traders to invoice the trade in Indian rupee and therefore achieve better pricing for goods and services traded.

Malaysia is the third largest trading partner of India in the ASEAN region, after Singapore and Indonesia.

 Manufacturing PMI

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: IE

 

Context: India’s manufacturing sector expanded at a three-month high driven by resilience in demand, growth in factory orders and easing input cost pressure.

PMI (Purchasing Managers’ Index)Description
DefinitionIt is a private survey-based measure that asks respondents about changes in their perception of key business variables compared to the previous month
PurposeProvides information about current and future business conditions for decision-makers, analysts, and investors
CalculationCalculated separately for manufacturing and services sectors, then a composite index is constructed
Range0 to 100 (Score above 50 indicates expansion, below 50 denotes contraction, and 50 indicates no change)
PeriodReleased at the start of every month
ByPublished by Japanese firm Nikkei but compiled by IHS Markit for over 40 economies worldwide
SignificanceWidely followed as an indicator of economic health, a high PMI reading is seen as positive, low PMI reading is seen as negative for overall economic performance

Anti-dumping probe into import of sodium cyanide

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: ET

 

Context: India has initiated an anti-dumping probe into imports of poisonous chemical sodium cyanide from China, the European Union, Japan and Korea following a complaint by domestic players.

AboutDescription
What is Dumping?The goods are exported by a country to a foreign country at a price lower than the price charged in its own home market.
Legality of DumpingLegal under WTO rules unless it can be shown to have negative effects on domestic producers in the importing country.
What is Anti-dumping?The tariff imposed by a domestic government on foreign imports at a price lower than the domestic market price.
Long-term Impact of Anti-dumpingCan reduce international competition for domestic companies producing similar goods.
Difference from Countervailing DutyCountervailing duty is imposed on goods that received government subsidies, while anti-dumping duty is imposed on imports at prices substantially lower than normal value.
Sunset Clause for Anti-dumping DutyValidity is 5 years from the date of imposition, extendable for another 5 years through sunset or expiry review investigation.
Authority administering Anti-Dumping dutyDirectorate General of Trade Remedies, under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry
About Sodium CyanideIt is a white crystalline odourless solid or powder. It releases hydrogen cyanide gas, a highly toxic chemical asphyxiant that interferes with the body’s ability to use oxygen.
Usage Sodium cyanide is used for the extraction of gold and silver from their respective ores, manufacturing insecticides, dyes, pigments, and bulk drugs.

Drug-resistant bacteria strain

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: TH

 Context: The national public health agency of the United States Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has expressed concern over a drug-resistant bacteria strain allegedly linked to eye drops imported from India

 

About the strain:

  • It is “extensively” antibiotic-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria found in multiple open containers of eye drops.
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa can cause infections in the blood, lungs (pneumonia), or other parts of the body after surgery.

 

The eye drops were manufactured by Chennai-based Global Pharma Healthcare and distributed in the U.S. market by EzriCare and Delsam Pharma. Previously, WHO had issued two medical product alerts on cough syrups manufactured in India which were exported to Gambia and Uzbekistan.

 

Licensing requirements of drug manufacturers in India:

  • Manufacturing of drugs for export needs licensing from the concerned State Licensing Authority (SLA) under the provisions of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act,1940
  • All manufacturers were required to meet the requirements of the importing country.

Artificial meteor showers could soon be a reality: Report

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: Indian Express

 Context: According to a report, Tokyo-based ALE is set to launch the satellite in 2025 and it hopes to give people all over the world “the opportunity to view the world’s first live human-made meteor shower.”

About meteor showers:

  • A natural meteor shower happens when our planet passes through the trail of debris left by a comet or an asteroid.
  • Meteors are chunks of rocks and ice that are ejected from comets as they orbit the Sun.
  • Around 30 meteor showers that are visible to observers on Earth occur every year and some of them have been observed for centuries.

 

Optional

 Sociology/Indian Society

 

Anthropology

 

Economy

 

PSIR

 

State PSC:

 

Himachal Pradesh

 

Rajasthan:

 

Read the Daily CA in PDF Format here:

 


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