Patna High Court strikes down 65% quota in Bihar

 Syllabus: Indian Constitution: Fundamental Rights Source: TH Context: The Patna High Court recently struck down Bihar’s attempt to raise Backward Classes (BC) reservation to 18%, Extremely Backward Communities (EBC) to 25%, and adjusted quotas for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, resulting in a total reservation of 65%.   Background of the case: The Bihar government …

Nord Stream Methane Leaks

Source: DTE Context: Thousands of tonnes of methane from the September 2022 Nord Stream pipeline explosions dissolved in the Baltic Sea, raising concerns about marine life and carbon cycles.   A study found that between 10,000 and 50,000 tonnes of methane likely dissolved in the water, potentially altering microbial life and local carbon budgets.   …

Cyber Mercenaries

Context: UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned about escalating cybersecurity threats and misuse of digital technology through Cyber Mercenaries, highlighting growing sophistication in malware like trojans and AI-enabled cyber operations.   About Cyber mercenaries:  They are individuals or private groups hired to conduct cyber operations, both offensive and defensive, targeting specific networks and infrastructure. They facilitate …

Global Environment Facility (GEF)

Source: GEF Context: The Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council has approved over $736.4 million in funding to address pressing environmental challenges worldwide. Funding from the GEF Trust Fund, Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), and Global Biodiversity Framework Fund (GBFF) supports diverse projects including: Great Green Wall (GGW) for landscape restoration in Africa’s Sahel region Sustainable …

Claude 3.5 Sonnet

Source: IE Context: Claude 3.5 Sonnet, the latest AI model from Anthropic, represents a significant advancement in the field of large language models (LLMs).   What is Claude 3.5 Sonnet?  It is the latest AI model developed by Anthropic, positioned within their family of generative pre-trained transformers (GPTs). Comparative table outlining the key features and …

e-SAKSHI Mobile Application

Source: PIB Context: The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) organized a two-day training workshop for the revised fund flow procedure under the MPLAD Scheme using the e-SAKSHI Portal.   What is the e-SAKSHI Portal? eSAKSHI portal is an end-to-end solution for efficient and transparent implementation of the MPLAD scheme.  

GM Crops: Balancing Food Security and Environmental Impact

Syllabus: Science and Technology Source: DW Context: Genetically modified (GM) crops are touted as a solution for global food security, especially in the face of climate change. The current “gene revolution” uses genetic editing to improve crop resilience, aiming to support a growing population and combat climate-induced agricultural challenges.   What is a GM Crop? …

Kerala’s gender-neutral school textbooks

Source: IT Context: Kerala’s government is promoting gender neutrality by revamping school textbooks to depict men and other family members participating in domestic chores, breaking traditional gender stereotypes. This initiative aims to foster inclusivity among children from an early age. New instructional materials, featuring fathers engaged in kitchen activities traditionally associated with women   The …

Vadhavan Port (India’s First Mega Port)

Syllabus: Geography: Ports/ Economy: Infrastructure sectors   Source: BS Context: The Vadhavan port, recently cleared by the Cabinet, will be India’s first mega port, poised to significantly enhance the country’s sea-based trade. Need: Currently, India handles about 4.6 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) of transhipment cargo, with approximately 4.2 million TEUs processed outside the country …

UPSC EDITORIAL ANALYSIS : Filling The Void In Farms

Source: Indian Express Prelims: Indian Economy(GDP, BOP, GVA, Economic reforms, agricultural reforms, PLI scheme etc Mains GS Paper III: Indian economy and issues related to planning, mobilization of resources, Effect of liberalization on the economy etc ARTICLE HIGHLIGHTS In the recently formed NDA cabinet Shivraj Singh Chouhan is heading the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers …

UPSC Sansad TV: AIR- Desertification, Its Impact, and Sustainable Solutions

   Introduction Desertification is a severe environmental issue characterized by the degradation of land in arid, semi-arid, and dry sub-humid areas, primarily due to human activities and climatic variations. It is a process that transforms fertile land into deserts, leading to a loss of biodiversity, reduced agricultural productivity, and increased vulnerability to climatic extremes. …

UPSC EDITORIAL ANALYSIS : Why criticism of the policy is premature and off the mark

Source: Indian Express Prelims: Current events of national importance(Different social service Schemes, NEP, HDI, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan etc) Mains GS Paper I & II: Social empowerment, development and management of social sectors/services related to Education etc. ARTICLE HIGHLIGHTS The new National Education Policy (NEP) was implemented in 2020, replacing the outdated NEP of 1986 INSIGHTS …

UPSC Editorials Quiz : 24 June 2024

Introducing QUED – Questions from Editorials (UPSC Editorials Quiz) , an innovative initiative from InsightsIAS. Considering the significant number of questions in previous UPSC Prelims from editorials, practicing MCQs from this perspective can provide an extra edge. While we cover important editorials separately in our Editorial Section and SECURE Initiative, adding QUED (UPSC Editorials Quiz) …

UPSC Mains Answer Writing Practice – Insights SECURE: 24 June 2024

The Insights IAS Secure Initiative for UPSC Mains Answer Writing practice enables you to practice daily answer writing, enhancing your skills and boosting your scores with regular feedback, expert tips, and strategies. Let consistency be the hallmark of your preparation and utilize UPSC Mains Answer Writing practice initiative wisely   Click on EACH question to post/upload …