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:
- The concept of fraternity
GS Paper 3:
- Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi)
GS Paper 4:
- Examples of Ethics
Facts for Prelims (FFP)
- Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana
- Gum Arabic
- Digital Services Act
- India-UK NET Zero Innovation Virtual Centre
- Theory of evolution
- Command Cyber Operations and Support Wings (CCOSWs)
GS Paper 2
Syllabus: Indian Constitution—Historical Underpinnings, Evolution, Features, Amendments, Significant Provisions and Basic Structure
Context: Since India imbibes the principle of ‘unity in diversity’, having a sense of fraternity is a virtue that is essential.
Meaning of fraternity:
- The word fraternity is derived from French to mean brotherhood, friendship, community and cooperation.
- It is a sense of common brotherhood among all Indians giving unity and solidarity to social life.
The concept of fraternity in the Indian Constitution:
- While submitting the Draft Constitution to the President of the Constituent Assembly (on 21 February 1948), B R Ambedkar (the chairman of the Drafting Committee) wrote that –
- The drafting committee had added a clause on “fraternity” in the Preamble
- Even though it was not part of the Objective Resolution
- As a result, the Preamble (adopted on 26 November 1949, came into effect on 26 January 1950 and amended by the 42nd Amendment 1976) to the Indian Constitution mentions –
- “Fraternity assuring the dignity of the individual and unity and integrity of the Nation”.
- Article 51A (Fundamental Duties) added to by the 42nd Amendment 1976 referred to the duty of every citizen ‘to promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood amongst all the people of India’.
- Both the Preamble and the Fundamental Duties can not be legally enforced, but have a moral, spiritual appeal.
Why is fraternity essential?
- It is one of the four pillars of constitutional morality spelt out in the Preamble of India’s Constitution: justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity.
- Without fraternity, equality and liberty can’t be achieved, because the idea of fraternity is closely linked to social solidarity.
- Gains coming from the other three are strengthened and enriched by a sense of fraternity.
Challenges that the concept face in India:
- Fraternity remains the least understood, least discussed, and the least practised of the four pillars of constitutional morality.
- Inequality and prejudice.
- Politics of hate and weak democratic opposition.
- Taking the form of loyalty to the state (nationalism), neglecting the principle of solidarity among citizens.
- Feminists often criticise the idea/definition of fraternity as it excludes “sisterhood.”
- Inter-state conflicts and challenges to internal security like left-wing extremism, terrorism, cybersecurity, fake news, etc
Steps taken by the Indian government:
- Inter-state councils, Zonal councils, Social initiatives like Ek Bharat – Shrestha Bharat, National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH), etc.
- A ‘uniform’ and ‘Common Minimum Programme for Value Education’ was launched across the entire schooling system with a focus on ‘core Constitutional values’.
- Balancing the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation.
- For this,
- A functioning moral order in society and a public conscience is essential. This will help in imbibing the concept individually and collectively.
- Each of Gandhiji’s Seven Social Sins must form the ethos of the socio-political fabric of India.
Conclusion: Ambedkar dreamed of an India in which divisions of caste and religion would gradually fade away in the spirit of fraternity. Therefore, investing in the concepts like fraternity would save society from fragmentation.
The spirit of tolerance and love is not only an interesting feature of Indian society from very early times, but it is also playing an important part at the present. Elaborate. (UPSC 2017)
Prelims Links: (UPSC 2020)
Syllabus: Governance: Regulators/ GS-3: Indian Economy and Issues
Context: The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) recently unveiled a new logo on the occasion of its 35th anniversary.
SEBI has been successful in its functions:
|Function||Example of SEBI’s success|
|Protection of investors’ interests||SEBI has taken action against fraudulent collective investment schemes to protect investors’ interests e.g., Action against the Sahara group (2013)|
|Impressive rise||Assets under the management of mutual funds, the total number of dematerialised accounts, dematerialised turnover, the number of derivatives contracts, etc, have all grown exponentially.|
|The smooth functioning of the securities market||SEBI has introduced online trading platforms and electronic clearing services|
|Regulation of securities market operations||SEBI has introduced regulations for insider trading, delisting of securities, and disclosure and investor protection guidelines|
|Education of investors||SEBI‘s ‘Jan Jagruti Abhiyaan’ to educate investors about the securities market and their rights as investors.|
|Prohibition of fraudulent and unfair trade practices||SEBI has taken action against market manipulations and price rigging. In 2015, SEBI ordered a probe into suspected rigging of the National Stock Exchange’s (NSE) algo-trading systems and imposed a penalty of Rs 1,000 crore on NSE for its role in the co-location case.|
|Ensuring compliance by market participants||In 2018, SEBI fined ICICI Bank and its CEO Chanda Kochhar for violating disclosure norms related to a loan given to Videocon Group.|
|Tackling insider trading||In 2017, SEBI imposed a penalty on Reliance Industries for alleged insider trading in Reliance Petroleum shares in 2007.|
Limitations of SEBI:
SEBI has certain limitations in terms of its reach, enforcement powers, coordination with other regulatory bodies, resources, and keeping up with changing market dynamics. These limitations can create regulatory gaps and overlaps, leading to delays in the resolution of cases.
- SEBI’s alleged inaction in the Ketan Parekh scam and Satyam scandal
- SEBI’s inability to prevent the NSEL scam
- Failure of SEBI’s regulations to prevent the misuse of participatory notes (P-notes) by foreign investors
There is a need for continuous monitoring and improving market intelligence to strengthen enforcement. Also, India’s financial markets are still segmented, and a unified financial regulator may be required to remove overlaps and excluded boundaries.
Discuss the powers and functions of SEBI. What are the major issues faced by the regulatory body for securities and commodity markets in India? Suggest reforms that are needed in its functioning. (250 Words)
Context: India’s representative at the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) faced criticism from Adivasi rights activists for stating that the concept of ‘indigenous people’ was not applicable in the Indian context.
|The Term “Indigenous People”||The Term “Tribals”|
|Refers to those groups who are regarded as native or original inhabitants of a particular region or geographic area, and who have a historical, cultural, and spiritual relationship with the land.
However, there is no singularly authoritative definition of indigenous peoples under international law and policy
|Refers to the communities in India who have historically lived in forests and hilly regions and have their distinct cultural practices and languages.|
|Recognized as distinct groups with their own language, culture, and traditions, and who have suffered historical injustices such as colonization, forced displacement, and discrimination.||Recognized by the Constitution of India as Scheduled Tribes (STs) and provided with certain protections and privileges.|
|Indian government argues that “all Indians are indigenous to the Indian subcontinent”, the concept of indigenous people is not applicable in the Indian context.||Critics argue that STs in India can be considered indigenous people as they have a distinct culture and tradition, and have faced historical injustices.|
The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which India has ratified, recognizes the rights of Indigenous people, including their right to self-determination, and the government’s position goes against this international declaration. Also, every year, on 9 August, the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples is marked.
|The United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (est. 2000; HQ: New York) is the UN’s central coordinating body for matters relating to the concerns and rights of the world’s indigenous peoples.|
|Mandate||To deal with indigenous issues related to economic and social development, culture, the environment, education, health and human rights|
|Functions||To promote the integration and coordination of activities relating to Indigenous Peoples’ issues within the UN system, and promote respect for and full application of the provisions of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and follow up on its effectiveness|
|Other Mandated UN Bodies||The Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of indigenous peoples|
Context: Sudan’s eruption into conflict has affected the supplies of gum Arabic across the world.
- It is a natural gum derived from the hardened sap of two species of the Acacia tree – Senegalia Senegal and Vachellia seyal.
- The gum is harvested commercially from wild trees, mostly in Sudan (80%) and throughout the Sahel (from Senegal to Somalia).
- Gum Arabic first found its way to Europe via Arabic ports, hence the name.
- It is soluble in water, edible and used primarily in the food industry and soft-drink industry as a stabiliser.
- It is also used in printing, paints, glues, cosmetics, and viscosity control in inks and textile industries.
Context: European Commission adopted the first designation decisions under the Digital Services Act (DSA)
Key features of the Digital Services Act (DSA):
|Definition||A set of common rules on intermediaries’ obligations and accountability across the single market|
|Objective||To tightly regulate the way intermediaries, especially large platforms such as Google, Facebook, and YouTube, function when it comes to moderating user content|
|Faster Removals and Provisions||Social media companies will have to add “new procedures for faster removal” of content deemed illegal or harmful. They will also have to explain to users how their content takedown policy works. The DSA also allows users to challenge takedown decisions taken by platforms and seek out-of-court settlements|
|Greater Responsibility for VLOPs||The law avoids a one-size-fits-all approach and places increased accountability on the Big Tech companies. Under the DSA, ‘Very Large Online Platforms’ (VLOPs) and ‘Very Large Online Search Engines’ (VLOSEs), that is platforms having more than 45 million users in the EU, will have more stringent requirements.|
|Direct Supervision by EC||The European Commission will be responsible for centrally supervising these requirements and their enforcement.|
|More Transparency on Algorithms||VLOPs and VLOSEs will face transparency measures and scrutiny of how their algorithms work, through systemic risk analysis and reduction to drive accountability about the social impacts of their products.|
|Clearer Identifiers for Ads||Online platforms must ensure that users can easily identify advertisements and understand who presents or pays for the advertisement. They must not display personalised advertising directed towards minors or based on sensitive personal data.|
Comparison of EU’s DSA vs. India’s IT Rules:
|Criteria||EU’s DSA||India’s IT Rules (Information Technology Rules, 2021)|
|Scope||This applies to all intermediaries operating in the EU, irrespective of their country||This applies to all social media platforms operating in India, irrespective of their country.|
|Content Moderation||Social media companies will have to add “new procedures for faster removal” of content deemed illegal or harmful.||Large social media platforms need to appoint key personnel to handle law enforcement requests and user grievances.|
|Responsibility||Places increased accountability on the Big Tech companies.||Places responsibility on social media platforms|
|Encryption||The DSA does not explicitly address encryption issues||The IT Rules mandate that social media platforms identify the first originator of the information on its platform under certain conditions, including cases of child sexual abuse material, which may compromise the encryption security on its platform.|
Context: Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) has issued an alert listing 48 commonly used medicines, as they failed the latest drug safety alert issued by the drug regulator
|The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (HQ: New Delhi) is India’s national regulatory body for cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and medical devices.|
|Responsibilities||Regulatory control over the import of drugs, approval of new drugs and clinical trials,|
|Ministry||Ministry of Health & Family Welfare|
|Enabling Legislation||Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules 1945|
|Key Functions||Approval of Drugs, Conduct of Clinical Trials, laying down standards for Drugs, Control over the quality of imported Drugs, Coordination of the activities of State DCOs by providing expert advice; approval of certain licenses as Central License Approving Authority|
|Joint Responsibility with State Regulators||Grant of licenses of certain specialized categories of critical Drugs such as blood and blood products, Vaccine|
|CDSCO is headed by the Drug Controller General of India|
Context: Recently, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) dropped the entire section on “Theory of evolution” from its Class 10 textbooks.
About Darwin’s theory of evolution:
|Darwin’s Theory of Evolution|
|Definition||Darwin’s theory of evolution is the process by which species of organisms develop and change over time through natural selection.|
|Principles||· Variation: Individuals within a species have differences or variations.
· Inheritance: Some of these variations are heritable and can be passed on to offspring.
· Selection: Organisms with advantageous variations have a higher chance of surviving and reproducing, passing on these advantageous traits to their offspring.
· Time: Evolution occurs over long periods of time, allowing for gradual changes to accumulate.
|Natural Selection||Natural selection is the driving force behind evolution. Organisms with advantageous traits are more likely to survive and reproduce, passing on those traits to their offspring. Over time, this leads to the evolution of new species.|
|Controversies||Darwin’s theory of evolution has been controversial since its introduction. Some religious and cultural beliefs conflict with the idea of evolution.|
|Influence||Lamarck, the French naturalist proposed his own theory of evolution before Darwin; Darwin’s theory was an extension of laissez-faire economics; Darwin was greatly influenced by Malthus’ ideas of competition in an environment with limited resources.|
Context: India and the United Kingdom will create India-UK NET Zero Innovation Virtual
About India-UK NET Zero Innovation Virtual Centre:
|Purpose||To bring stakeholders from both countries together to work in some of the focus areas including decarbonization of manufacturing processes & transport systems, and green hydrogen as a renewable source|
|Announced||It was announced during the India-UK Science & Innovation Council meeting|
|Other initiatives between India and UK||UK’s International Science Partnerships Fund (Newton-Bhabha fund); UK-India scientific ‘deep sea voyage (for carrying out scientific studies) and ‘space parks’ (manufacturing hub for space-related technology) partnership; India-UK Neutron Scattering Workshop; India-UK iSiS project (for neutron and muon science); UK-India Tech Partnership (2018)|
Context: The Indian Army has decided to create Command Cyber Operations and Support Wings (CCOSWs) to assist its formations in dealing with cyberspace security challenges posed by adversaries.
|Purpose||To assist Army formations in taking up cyberspace security challenges and safeguard networks|
|Goal||Increase preparedness levels in the cyberspace domain|
|Function||Help Army formations in addressing cyberspace security challenges posed by adversaries. The Lead Directorates and Test Bed formations will facilitate the absorption of niche technologies and improve the exploitation of futuristic technologies across the army.|
|Challenges Addressed||Adversaries’ expansion of cyber warfare capabilities, cyber-attacks on critical infrastructure, digital illiteracy, import dependency on electronic devices, lack of coordination among agencies, and inadequate infrastructure and trained staff|
|Other Initiatives Taken by India||National Cyber Security Policy (2013); Framework for enhancing Cyber Security; Tri-service Defence Cyber Agency (DCA); setting up of CERT-In and National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre (NCIIPC)|
|Initiatives taken by other countries for cyberwarfare||US Cyber Command was established in 2009; France adopted a national cyber security strategy in 2015; China’s Strategic Support Force in 2015; Russian GRU; Israel’s Unit 8200;|
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