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UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS – 19 June 2024 covers important current affairs of the day, their backward linkages, their relevance for Prelims exam and MCQs on main articles


InstaLinks :  Insta Links help you think beyond the  current affairs issue and help you think multidimensionally to develop depth in your understanding of these issues. 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.

Table of Contents 

GS Paper 2: (UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS – 19 June 2024)

  1. Analysis of Constitutional Morality
  2. A Study on Ageing in India
  3. Two Decades of Quad: Diplomacy and Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific


Reports In News:

  1. Sustainable Development Report 2024
  2. SIPRI Yearbook 2024: Armaments, Disarmament, and International Security released


Facts for Prelims (FFP)

  1. Direct seeding of rice (DSR)
  2. ‘5G Intelligent Village’ and ‘Quantum Encryption Algorithm’
  3. Matsya 6000
  4. Bio-bitumen
  5. World Crocodile Day



  1. Mercury Island



GS Paper 2:

Analysis of Constitutional Morality

Syllabus: Indian Constitution

Source: TH

Context: The article criticizes the recent government’s actions for disregarding the Indian Constitution.


Examples of Recent Government Actions Against the Constitution:

  • Preemptive Decision-Making: The government approved a ₹20,000 crore scheme (Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi) before ministerial portfolios were allocated.
  • Cabinet Actions Without Portfolios: The first cabinet meeting decided on assisting three crore additional households under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana without assigned portfolios, raising procedural legitimacy questions.
  • Extension of Tenures: The Government extended the tenures of the National Security Adviser and the Principal Secretary prematurely, using the old Appointments Committee setup without reconstituting the Cabinet Committee.


What is Constitutional morality?

It refers to adherence to the core principles and values enshrined in a constitution, guiding the conduct of both the government and its citizens. It encompasses values such as justice, liberty, equality, fraternity, and the rule of law, ensuring the Constitution’s spirit is upheld beyond mere legal compliance. In India, the term was first used by Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.


Pillars of Constitutional Morality:

  1. Constitutional Values: Justice, liberty, equality, fraternity, secularism, dignity.
  2. Rule of Law: Supremacy and accountability under the law for all, including officials.
  3. Democratic Principles: Functioning representative democracy with citizen participation.
  4. Fundamental Rights: Respecting and protecting rights like equality and freedom of speech.
  5. Separation of Powers: Balancing legislative, executive, and judicial branches.
  6. Checks and Balances: Preventing power abuse and protecting individual rights.
  7. Constitutional Interpretation: Promoting principles and adapting to societal changes.
  8. Ethical Governance: Ensuring transparency, accountability, and integrity in public service.



  1. Safeguarding Democracy: Constitutional morality ensures the preservation of democratic values and prevents authoritarianism.
  2. Protection of Rights: It upholds individual rights and freedoms, ensuring that laws and governance are aligned with constitutional mandates.
  3. Judicial Benchmarks: Serves as a guiding principle for the judiciary in interpreting and applying the Constitution.
  4. Social Justice: Promotes social justice by ensuring that marginalised communities are protected and their rights respected.
  5. Bring positive change in society: It can be used to interpret laws or statutes no longer consistent with recent times, thus bringing positive societal change.


B.R. Ambedkar’s View on Constitutional Morality:

  1. Cultivation Needed: Constitutional morality is not innate; it must be cultivated.
  2. Respect for Forms: It involves a paramount reverence for the forms of the Constitution.
  3. Sacredness: The forms of the Constitution must be sacred to both those in power and their opponents.
  4. Essential for Democracy: Constitutional morality ensures accountability and adherence to democratic principles.


Key Case Laws Upholding Constitutional Morality in India:

  1. Navtej Singh Johar v. Union of India (2018): Decriminalisation of Section 377 IPC, which criminalised consensual homosexual acts. The Supreme Court emphasised constitutional morality over social morality, decriminalising consensual homosexual acts among adults.
  2. Sabarimala Temple Case: Ban on entry of women of menstruating age into Sabarimala temple. The Supreme Court held the ban unconstitutional, which affirmed the constitutional morality of gender equality and non-discrimination over religious customs.
  3. Joseph Shine v. Union of India (2018): The Supreme Court decriminalised adultery, stating that the law was archaic and violated constitutional guarantees of equality. This highlighted the importance of individual autonomy, equality and human dignity to all.
  4. NCT of Delhi vs. Union of India (2018): The Supreme Court equated constitutional morality with the spirit of the Constitution itself. It held that Constitutional morality, in its strictest sense, implies a strict and complete adherence to the constitutional principles as enshrined in the Constitution.
    1. 7th Schedule- Division of powers between centre and states.


Challenges to Constitutional Morality:

  1. Social and Cultural Norms: Deep-rooted societal and cultural norms often conflict with constitutional values, leading to resistance to implementing judicial decisions.
    1. Example: Resistance to the Sabarimala judgment due to traditional beliefs.
  2. Political Influence: Politicians may undermine constitutional morality for electoral gains, promoting majoritarian views over constitutional principles.
    1. Example: Political backlash against electoral bonds ruling of the Supreme Court.
  3. Lack of Awareness: Insufficient awareness and understanding of constitutional values among the general public can hinder the acceptance and enforcement of constitutional morality.
    1. Example: Many Indians still believe that Hindi is the national language.
  4. Subjectivity: Some argue that the concept of constitutional morality is highly subjective and that it can be used to justify different actions and decisions depending on the perspective of the person or institution interpreting it.
  5. Judicial Limitations and Overreach: Balancing judicial activism to uphold constitutional morality without overstepping the separation of powers can be challenging.
  6. Economic and Social Inequality: Economic and social inequalities can limit the ability of marginalised groups to seek justice and uphold constitutional morality.



Constitutional morality is a cornerstone for ensuring that the spirit and values of the Constitution are upheld in governance and society. While key judicial rulings in India have reinforced this principle, various challenges such as societal norms, political interference, and lack of public awareness persist. Addressing these challenges requires concerted efforts from all branches of government, civil society, and citizens to truly embed constitutional morality in the fabric of the nation.


Mains Link:

Q: What is meant by the term ‘constitutional morality’? How does one uphold constitutional morality? (UPSC 2019)


A Study on Ageing in India

Syllabus: Indian Society/ Government  Policies and Interventions/ Vulnerable sections

Source: TH, TH

Context: The study titled ‘Ageing in India – Exploring Preparedness & Response to Care Challenges – A HelpAge India Report’ was released on the eve of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (15th June).


Key Findings of the Study (India):

  1. Working Status: Only 15% of elderly persons work, with 24% of males and just 7% of females, highlighting gender disparity.
  2. Lack of Social Security: Only 29% of elderly people have access to social security schemes.
  3. High Prevalence of Multiple Morbidities: 54% of elderly persons suffer from two or more non-communicable diseases.
  4. Digital Access: 59% have no access to a digital device.
  5. Social Participation: Minimal, with only 7% being members of any social organization.


India’s elderly population is rapidly growing due to improved healthcare and increased life expectancy. Currently at 153 million, it is projected to reach 347 million by 2050 (20.8% of the total population). As of Census 2011, older people (60+) make up 8.6% of the total population, with females outnumbering males among the elderly.


Policy recommendations from the “2023 India Ageing Report”:

Address Gender-Specific ChallengesPolicies should specifically address the challenges faced by older women, including widowed and dependent elderly women.
Promote In-Situ AgingEncourage and facilitate ageing at home (in-situ ageing) where possible, ensuring that elderly individuals can stay within their communities.
Increase Awareness of SchemesRaise awareness about government schemes and programs designed for older persons, ensuring they can access necessary support.
Regulate Old Age HomesImplement regulatory measures to oversee Old Age Homes, ensuring the well-being and rights of residents.
Inclusion in Data Collection ExercisesInclude relevant questions related to older persons in national data collection exercises to gather credible data on elderly issues.
Focus on Multigenerational HouseholdsEncourage elderly individuals to live in multigenerational households, promoting better care and support within families.


Other aspects of Ageing:


Challenges faced by women in old age due to rising life expectancy and widowhood:

Financial DependenceLimited access to employment opportunities, lower wages, and inadequate savings can lead to financial dependence in old age.
Deteriorating HealthAging can bring deteriorating health, including chronic diseases, mobility issues, and mental health challenges.
Social IsolationOlder women, especially widows, may experience social isolation and loneliness due to the loss of a spouse and limited social networks.
Rural SituationOlder women in rural areas face unique challenges like limited access to healthcare, inadequate infrastructure, and caregiving or agricultural burdens.
IntersectionalityWomen from marginalized communities may face compounded challenges in old age due to their socio-economic background, and tribal or minority status.
Ageism and MisogynyOlder women may encounter ageism and misogyny, leading to stereotypes, discrimination, and limited opportunities for engagement in various aspects of life.


Suggested measures:

Social Security SystemsE.g., Kalaignar Magalir Urimai Thittam is a women’s rights grant scheme just rolled out in Tamil Nadu aimed at providing financial support to eligible women recognized as heads of families
Karnataka Gruha Lakshmi Scheme supports women heads of families by providing eligible women will receive financial assistance of ₹2000 per month.
Intergenerational programs: Programs that promote intergenerational bonding, such as mentorship programs and community service projects
Access to HealthcareImprove access to healthcare services, including geriatric care, preventive screenings, and mental health support, to address the specific health needs of older women.
Social InclusionPromote social inclusion and active participation of older women through community-based programs, intergenerational activities, and support networks.
Civil Society EngagementCommunity-based initiatives and CSO engagement through Senior citizen clubs and programs, can provide social support and help prevent social isolation among the elderly
E.g. Asha Deep Foundation provides Day Care Centre for the elderly members of our community who are either neglected, have no children or are abandoned by their families.
Demographic StabilityFocus on policies and programs that address population ageing and the needs of older women, such as promoting family planning, women’s empowerment, and intergenerational solidarity.
Community-based care system for eldersASHA program could be used for building a community-based workforce to support the diverse health and social care needs of elders
Age-friendly citiesCities can be designed to be age-friendly, with infrastructure and public spaces that are accessible to all, including elderly citizens.


Government Scheme for Old Age:

National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP)Offers non-contributory pensions for the elderly, widowed women, and disabled individuals. Administered by the Ministry of Rural Development.
Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana (PMVVY)Exclusive pension scheme for senior citizens aged 60 and above. Extended up to 2023 for three more years beyond 2020.
Integrated Program for Older Persons (IPOP)Aims to enhance the quality of life for senior citizens by providing basic amenities such as food, shelter, medical care, and entertainment opportunities.
Rashtriya Vayoshree YojanaCentral sector scheme funded by the Senior Citizens’ Welfare Fund. Provides aids and assistive living devices to elderly BPL individuals with age-related disabilities.
SAMPANN ProjectLaunched in 2018, an online pension processing system for Department of Telecommunications pensioners. Direct credit of pension into bank accounts of pensioners.
SACRED Portal for ElderlyDeveloped by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. Citizens above 60 can register to find jobs and work opportunities, and access information and guidance on various issues.
Elder Line: Toll-Free Number for ElderlyProvides information, guidance, emotional support, and immediate assistance for elderly citizens, particularly on pension, medical, and legal matters.
SAGE (Seniorcare Ageing Growth Engine) InitiativeA platform offering access to elderly care products and services by credible start-ups, supporting entrepreneurship in the field of elderly care.



By recognizing the specific needs of older persons and providing targeted support, we can create a society that values and empowers them, ensuring their well-being and active participation in all spheres of life.


Insta Links:

  1. Issues related to Elderly People
  2. old age care
  3. World Population Prospects


Mains Links:

Despite Consistent experience of high growth, India still goes with the lowest indicators of human development. Examine the issues that make balanced and inclusive development elusive. (UPSC 2021)


Two Decades of Quad: Diplomacy and Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific

Syllabus: International Relations

 Source: ORF

Context: A report has been released on the TWO DECADES OF THE QUAD: Diplomacy & Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific


What is QUAD? 

The Quad, or Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, is a strategic partnership between Australia, India, Japan, and the US. It is not a military alliance or mutual defense agreement. It was formed during the ASEAN Regional Forum, the Quad nations account for 24% of the global population, 35% of the world’s GDP, and 18% of global trade.



2004FORMATION OF THE QUADThe Quad was formed by Australia, India, Japan, and the United States, to coordinate relief efforts after the Indian Ocean Tsunami.
2007TRANSFORMATION INTO A STRATEGIC DIALOGUEThe first Quad officials’ meeting takes place and focuses on shared interests in the Indo-Pacific region.
2008-2012DISSOLUTION OF THE QUADAustralia withdraws from the Quad over concerns of antagonizing China, however, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan later calls for a revival of the partnership.
2017-2024REVIVAL OF THE QUADIn 2017, the Quad was revived and expanded its focus to include new policy areas.
EXPANSION OF COOPERATIONThe Quad now includes joint military exercises, six working groups, and an investors network, among other initiatives.
2021-2024LEADERS’ SUMMITS CHART THE PATH FORWARDAnnual Quad Leaders’ Summits have provided high-level guidance through joint statements on shared goals and principles.


Policy/Initiative under QUAD:

HealthEstablished Quad Vaccine Partnership, evolving into the broader Quad Health Security Partnership in 2023. Initiatives include e-health systems expansion and the Quad Pandemic Preparedness Exercise.
ClimateLaunched the Quad Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Package (Q-CHAMP) in 2022. In 2023, released Principles on Clean Energy Supply Chains in the Indo-Pacific.
Critical and Emerging TechnologyInitiated the Semiconductor Supply Chain Initiative in 2021 to diversify technology supply chains.
SpaceLaunched the Indo-Pacific Partnership for Maritime Domain Awareness (IPMDA) in 2022.
InfrastructureLaunched the Trilateral Partnership for Infrastructure Investment in the Indo-Pacific (TIP) in 2018.
CybersecurityEstablished the Quad Cybersecurity Partnership in 2022.


How does QUAD contribute to enhancing India’s strategic interests

  1. Counterbalance to China: As a member of the QUAD, in the event of a rise in the Chinese hostilities on its borders, India can take the support of the other QUAD nations to counter it.
  2. Strategic Partnerships: QUAD facilitates strategic partnerships among like-minded democracies. This strengthens India’s diplomatic ties, fostering a multilateral approach to regional challenges.
  3. For a free and open Indo-Pacific: This aspect becomes important for India, in the wake of China’s aggressiveness and coercive nature in the strategic Indo-Pacific region.
  4. India as a Net Security provider: For India to assert this role as a Region, its dominance in the Indian Ocean Region needs to be maintained and sustained. QUAD provides India with a platform to enhance security through partnerships in the region.
  5. Multipolar World: India has supported a rule-based multipolar world and QUAD can help it achieve its ambition of becoming a regional superpower.
  6. Maritime Security Cooperation: QUAD members collaborate on maritime security, including joint naval exercises and patrols. This enhances India’s capabilities in addressing common challenges.
  7. Infrastructure Development: QUAD aims to promote infrastructure development in the Indo-Pacific, fostering connectivity. This aligns with India’s interests in the region.
  8. Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief: This enhances India’s capacity to respond to natural disasters in the Indo-Pacific, showcasing its commitment to regional stability.
  9. Technology and Cybersecurity Cooperation: This collaboration benefits India by leveraging technological advancements and enhancing cyber resilience.
  10. Promotion of Democratic Values: QUAD promotes democratic values, the rule of law, and international norms. India, as the world’s largest democracy, aligns with these principles.


Issues Related to Quad:

  1. Undefined Vision: Quad lacks a clear strategic mission despite its potential for cooperation.
  2. Maritime Focus: Emphasis on the Indo-Pacific makes Quad primarily maritime, limiting cooperation in the Asia-Pacific and Eurasian regions.
  3. India’s Aversion to Alliances: India’s reluctance to join a formal treaty alliance hinders stronger Quad engagement.



QUAD serves as a key platform for India to advance its strategic interests in the Indo-Pacific by promoting security, stability, economic opportunities, and collaborative solutions to regional challenges. Navigating the complex geopolitical dynamics requires a nuanced and strategic approach from India to safeguard its interests and promote regional stability.


Insta Links:


Mains Link:

Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) is transforming itself into a trade bloc from a military alliance, in present times Discuss. (UPSC 2020)


Reports in News

Sustainable Development Report 2024By UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN)
Key Highlights of the report:
Globally, only 16% of SDG targets are on track for achievement by 2030. Progress varies widely among countries, with Nordic nations leading, BRICS making strides, and Poor & Vulnerable nations falling behind.


India is ranked 109th out of 166 countries, with on-track performance in Poverty reduction and Quality Education targets while decreasing progress in Sustainable Cities and Climate Action targets.


New Index of Support to UN-based Multilateralism (UN-Mi): It ranks countries based on their engagement with the UN System. Barbados ranks highest, India at 139th place while the USA ranks last.


Recommendations of the Report: The UNSDSN recommends keeping the Sustainable Development agenda central to global cooperation until 2050, ensuring it is well-funded. It advocates for strengthening UN agencies and systematically monitoring UN-based multilateralism. Additionally, it emphasizes enhancing governance of technological risks and ensuring universal access to essential technologies and R&D. The recommendations also include establishing a UN Parliamentary Assembly and reforming the UN Security Council by adding India as a permanent member and adopting procedures to override a veto.


About SDSN:


The Sustainable Development Solutions Network is a non-profit created in 2012 by the United Nations to promote the 17 Sustainable Development Goals at national and international levels. As of 2022, the SDSN has over 1,700 members in 50 networks across 144 countries, with offices in New York, Paris, and Kuala Lumpur.

SIPRI Yearbook 2024: Armaments, Disarmament, and International Security releasedThe SIPRI Yearbook 2024 reports an increase in nuclear weapons development and modernization by the nine nuclear-armed states, with a total global inventory of approximately 12,121 warheads. The USA and Russia hold nearly 90% of these. China’s nuclear arsenal is expanding rapidly, now estimated at 500 warheads. Tensions over Ukraine and Gaza have further weakened nuclear diplomacy.
Nine nuclear-armed states are—the US, Russia, the UK, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea, and Israel. India, now with 172 warheads, has slightly surpassed Pakistan’s count. Both India and Israel primarily use plutonium in their nuclear weapons.


About SIPRI:


Stockholm International Peace Research Institute is an international institute based in Stockholm, Sweden. It was founded in 1966 and provides data, analysis and recommendations for armed conflict, military expenditure and arms trade as well as disarmament and arms control.



UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS – 19 June 2024 Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Direct seeding of rice (DSR)

 Source: IE

Context: The Punjab government is promoting the direct seeding of rice (DSR) technique due to its benefits, such as reducing water usage by 15-20%, requiring less labour, and maturing faster than traditional methods. 

  • DSR involves sowing seeds directly into the field without nursery preparation or transplantation, which reduces water and labour requirements.
  • Successful DSR implementation depends heavily on soil texture and iron content.



  • Faster planting and maturing of the crop.
  • Reduces the water consumption and labour as compared to the traditional transplantation method.
  • Controlling stubble burning also helps in reducing Methane emissions.


‘5G Intelligent Village’ and ‘Quantum Encryption Algorithm’

Source: PIB

Context: The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has announced two significant calls for proposals to stimulate innovation and technological advancement in the telecommunications sector.

  • These initiatives aim to promote indigenous R&D, IP creation, and inclusive digital growth across India under the Telecom Technology Development Fund (TTDF) scheme.


Initiative5G Intelligent Village InitiativeQuantum Encryption Algorithm (QEA)
ObjectiveTo harness 5G technology to transform rural life, driving digital inclusion and economic growth.To develop an India-specific quantum encryption algorithm for securing digital communication channels.
ScopeFocuses on agriculture, education, healthcare, governance, and sustainability in selected villages across India.Not Applicable
GoalsEnable effective utilization of 5G’s URLLC and mMTC, establish 5G connectivity in uncovered areas, and unite various stakeholders for R&D in 5G technology.Not Applicable
FeaturesNot ApplicableUnparalleled security, advanced encryption capabilities, and ultrafast, efficient encryption.



Matsya 6000

 Source: PIB

 Context: India is set to become the sixth country to have its own Deep Sea Mission.

  • The first stage of the harbour trial aims at reaching a depth of 40-50 meters.
  • The National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT) developed Matsya 6000, a submersible capable of reaching depths of 6000 meters, and collaborated with ISRO on creating a titanium hull to withstand extreme pressures.


About Matsya 6000:

  • The Matsya 6000 is a human-occupied submersible designed and developed by India’s National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT).
  • It is part of India’s ambitious Samudrayaan Mission, aimed at deep-sea exploration and research.


Design and Capabilities:

  • Depth Capability: The Matsya 6000 is designed to operate at depths of up to 6000 meters (approximately 19,685 feet).
  • Occupancy: It can accommodate three crew members.
  • Duration: The submersible can stay submerged for up to 12 hours of operational time, with an additional 96 hours of emergency endurance.
  • Material: The pressure hull is made from titanium to withstand the extreme pressures of deep-sea environments.
  • Instruments: It is equipped with advanced scientific instruments for underwater research, including high-definition cameras, sonar systems, and robotic arms for sampling and interaction with the seabed.



 Source: ET

Context: India is planning to produce bio-bitumen from biomass and agricultural waste to reduce its reliance on imports and address stubble-burning issues in road construction.

  • Currently, India imports about half of its annual bitumen requirement.
  • A pilot study by the Central Road Research Institute (CRRI) and the Indian Institute of Petroleum, Dehradun, will test bio-bitumen on a 1-km road stretch.
  • This initiative aims to save foreign exchange, achieve self-sufficiency in bitumen production, and provide a solution for stubble burning.


Bio-bitumen is an eco-friendly alternative to traditional petroleum-based bitumen, used primarily in road construction and roofing.

It is derived from renewable biomass sources such as agricultural residues, forestry waste, and other organic materials.

The development and utilization of bio-bitumen aim to reduce reliance on fossil fuels and minimize the environmental impact of bitumen production and use.


World Crocodile Day

 Source: DTE

 Context: In 1975, India initiated its Crocodile Conservation Project in Odisha’s Bhitarkanika National Park with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).


About Crocodiles:

  • Crocodiles are large, aquatic reptiles found in tropical and subtropical regions around the world. They belong to the family Crocodylidae and are known for their powerful jaws, armoured bodies, and remarkable adaptations for a semi-aquatic lifestyle.
  • There are three main species of crocodiles in India




UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS – 19 June 2024 Mapping

Mercury Island

 Source: PIB

Context: The documentary “My Mercury” premiered at the 18th Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF) for Documentary, Short Fiction, and Animation Films.

  • The film explores the life of her brother, Yves Chesselet, a conservationist on Mercury Island off the coast of Namibia. The 104-minute documentary portrays Yves’ efforts to reclaim the island for endangered seabirds and seals, emphasizing the psychological challenges and deep bond between man and nature.


About Mercury Island:

Mercury Island is a small rocky island off The Diamond Coast, Namibia. Despite its small size, it is recognised by BirdLife International and other global conservation groups as an Important Bird Area (IBA) for its significant coastal seabird breeding.




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