Daily PIB Notes-October 8 and 9 compilation

Daily PIB Notes-October 8 and 9 compilation

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1.Prime Minister launches Intensified Mission Indradhanush (IMI) 

  • Let no child suffer from any vaccine-preventable disease: Prime Minister
  • Improving the health status of children of our country is amongst the top priorities of the Government: Sh J P Nadda

Aim: To reach each and every child under two years of age and all those pregnant women who have been left uncovered under the routine immunisation programme.

Focus: Improving immunization coverage in select districts and cities to ensure full immunization to more than 90% by December 2018.

  • The achievement of full immunisation under Mission Indradhanush to at least 90% coverage was to be achieved by 2020 earlier. With the launch of IMI, achievement of the target has now been advanced.
  • Earlier the increase in full immunization coverage was 1% per year which has increased to 6.7% per year through the first two phases of ‘Mission Indradhanush’.

Features of Intensified Mission Indradhanush :

  • Will cover low performing areas in the selected districts and urban areas.
  • Special attention will be given to unserved/low coverage pockets in sub-centre and urban slums with migratory population.
  • The focus is also on the urban settlements and cities identified under National Urban Health Mission (NUHM).
  • Will have inter-ministerial and inter-departmental coordination, action-based review mechanism and intensified monitoring and accountability framework for effective implementation of targeted rapid interventions to improve the routine immunization coverage.

2.World post day:

  • In India it will be a part of the National Postal Week till 15th October 2014.
  • On all the days school children will be involved to educate them on functioning of the Postal Department

Background:-

  • World Post Day is celebrated each year on 9thOctober, the anniversary of the establishment of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) in 1874 in Berne.
  • The Minister for Communications  launched e-IPO (Indian Postal Order) in the denominations of Rs. 10/-, Rs. 20/-, Rs. 50/- &Rs. 100/-, as a pilot project in Bihar, Delhi and Karnataka.
  • e-IPO will be used for all purposes like fee payment for RTI/ educational institutions/ Court/ online registration for Cable Operators etc.

3.The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi layed Foundation Stone for Bhadbhut Barrage over the River Narmada.

The Prime Minister also flagged off the Antyodaya Express between Udhna (Surat, Gujarat) and Jaynagar (Bihar).

Proposed advantages:

  • Connects people and particularly helps those who are from Uttar Pradesh or Bihar, and work far from their home.
  • Train will make it easier for people from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to go home for Chhath Puja.

4.Indian Naval Academy (INA), Ezhimala is all set to conduct the fourth edition of the prestigious annual Dilli seminar on 12th and 13th of October 2017. 

Theme:‘India and Southeast Asia – Maritime Trade, Expedition and Civilisation Linkages’.

Background :-

INA conducts the annual Dilli seminar on elements and issues of maritime history and heritage of the nation to help the young officers and cadets keep an eye on future developments in the maritime domain with a strong foundation of the past.

5.Trails pass.

  • Traill’s Pass (5400m) is a high altitude pass in Nandadevi National Park (Kumaon Region) which joins the Milam and Pindari Glaciers.

6.Pradhan Mantri Gramin Digital Saksharta Abhiyan (PMGDISHA)

  •  PMGDISHA is aimed at imparting digital literacy to citizens in rural areas. It will provide access to information, knowledge, education, and healthcare.
  • It will create avenues for livelihood generation, and financial inclusion through digital payments.

7.ImTeCHO

  • ImTeCHO is an innovative mobile phone application to improve performance of ASHAs through better supervision, support and motivation for increasing coverage of proven maternal, newborn and child health interventions among resource-poor settings in India.
  • ImTeCHO stands for “Innovative mobile-phone Technology for Community Health Operations”.
  • “TeCHO” in Gujarati means “support”; therefore, “ImTeCHO” means “I am support.
  • The Prime Minister will distribute e-tablets to health workers to mark the launch of ImTeCHO.
HINDU NOTES-OCT 10 2017 [UPSC Current affairs DAILY CAPSULE]

HINDU NOTES-OCT 10 2017 [UPSC Current affairs DAILY CAPSULE]

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General Studies-02

SC brings back ban on firecrackers in Delhi-NCR region

News:

  • The Supreme Court on Monday suspended the sale of firecrackers in Delhi and NCR till November 1, 2017 in a bid to test whether a Deepavali without firecrackers this year will have a “positive effect” on the health of citizens and a steadily deteriorating air quality.

Beyond News:

  • A Bench of Justices reverted to its November 2016 decision to suspend sales of firecrackers “to test itself to find out whether there would be a positive effect of this suspension, particularly during Deepavali period.”
  • The judgment came on petitions challenging the September 12 modification of the November 2016 ban on sale of firecrackers.
  • Perusing records, the Bench pointed to the various efforts made by the government, media and civil society to create awareness of the harms of bursting firecrackers, especially on children.

Rationale behind:

  • It said the adverse effects of burning of crackers during Deepavali have been witnessed year after year.
  • The air quality deteriorates abysmally and the city chokes. It leads to closing the schools and the authorities are compelled to take various measures on emergent basis, when faced with a “health emergency”.
  • The judgment said the September 12 verdict modifying the ban on sale of firecrackers was taken without the knowledge of the Central Pollution Control Board’s (CPCB) consistent stand for the past 20 years that sulphur in fireworks should not be permitted.

SC lays stress on safety norms for schools

News: 

The Supreme Court on Monday stressed the need for safety guidelines for children in schools across India which makes authorities accountable and result in adverse consequences upon them in cases of violation.

Beyond News: 

  • It had made three additions to the school safety guidelines on three separate occasions and handed it over to the States for implementation.
  • The court was hearing a petition filed by the father of Pradyuman, who was found brutally murdered on the premises of Gurugram’s Ryan International School.

Petitioners Stand:

  • Mr. Kumar said the Centre has also modified the National Disaster Management guidelines, specifically focusing on the safety of school children, and to prevent the occurrence of such tragic incidents.

Centres stand: 

  • The Centre said it has already prepared an affidavit on the steps taken and would file it in the Supreme Court in the course of the day.

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) had recently filed an affidavit stating that the Gurugram incident took place due to the “negligence” of the administration as drivers and conductors were allowed to use washrooms meant for students.

U.S. bid to inject India in Afghanistan won’t work: Pakistan

News:

  • Rejecting any role for India in Afghanistan, Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Monday warned that the Trump administration’s desire to inject New Delhi in the war-torn country would be “detrimental”.

Beyond News:

  • U.S. President Donald Trump in August unveiled his South Asia policy and vowed to boost strategic partnership with India in Afghanistan.
  • Mr. Trump also sought an enhanced role for India to bring peace and stability in Afghanistan.
  • India has been supporting an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned, broad-based and inclusive process of peace and reconciliation, and advocating the need for a sustained and long-term commitment to Afghanistan by the international community.
  • Mr. Abbasi said Pakistan had major U.S. weapons systems in its military, but it also possessed Chinese and European systems, and more recently it inducted Russian attack helicopters.

{Op-Ed}Towards transparency — on judicial appointments.

Issue: Op-Ed is all about the SC decision to publish reasons for selection & rejection of judges in public platform.

  • The Supreme Court collegium’s decision to disclose the reasons for its recommendations marks a historic and welcome departure from the entrenched culture of secrecy surrounding judicial appointments.
  • The collegium, comprises the Chief Justice of India and four senior judges.

What all will be revealed?

  1. The reasons behind decisions on the initial appointment of candidates to High Court benches
  2. their confirmation as permanent judges
  3. elevation as High Court Chief Justices and to the Supreme Court
  4. transfer of judges and Chief Justices from one High Court to another.
  • It is important to strike the right balance between full disclosure and opaqueness. It is to be hoped that this balancing of transparency and confidentiality will augur well for the judiciary.
  • The introduction of transparency acquires salience in the light of the resignation of Justice Jayant M. Patel of the Karnataka High Court after he was transferred to the Allahabad High Court as a puisne judge, despite his being senior enough to be a High Court Chief Justice.

Current scenario:

  • There are 387 vacancies in the various High Courts as on October 1.
  • The mammoth task of filling these vacancies would be better served if a revised Memorandum of Procedure for appointments is agreed upon soon.
  • A screening system, along with a permanent secretariat for the collegium, would be ideal for the task.
  • The introduction of transparency should be backed by a continuous process of addressing perceived shortcomings.
  • The present disclosure norm is a commendable beginning.

Bay of Bengal diplomacy

News:

  • India will seek to reaffirm its regional leadership in environmental and climate diplomacy as it hosts the first Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic CooperationDisaster Management Exercise (BIMSTEC DMEx 2017) starting October 10.

Beyond News:

  • The BIMSTEC region, comprising 22% of the global population, is exposed to an ever-increasing threat from natural disasters.
  • Whether it is the recurrent floods affecting Assam, West Bengal and downstream in Bangladesh or Himalayan landslides in India and Nepal, regular disasters in the sub-region continue to cause transboundary impacts, damaging lives, livelihoods and assets, often leading to mass displacement and migration across borders.
  • BIMSTEC,  has the opportunity to enable a paradigm policy shift from a traditional relief centric, reactive approach towards a joint, proactive, holistic one that encompasses disaster preparedness, prevention, mitigation and risk reduction among member states.
  • In order to strengthen inter-governmental coordination, among BIMSTEC members, the first step would be to devise a comprehensive Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) regional action plan.
  • The road map should reflect a clear strategy to integrate DRR in all development programmes of member nations, adopt a multi-hazard and multi-sectoral approach to DRR and work towards common outcomes through institutionalising partnerships across all levels of governance.

Building capacity

  • India has volunteered to lead the Environment and Natural Disaster Agenda under BIMSTEC, and must make the best of this opportunity by translating the learnings from the disaster management experiences of SAARC and ASEAN.
  • This is also an opportunity for India to take a measured approach and add value to its own regional agenda.
  • General Studies-03

{Op-Ed}Problem animals — on wildlife protection strategies

Key issue: In June this year, the Bombay High Court quashed an order by the Maharashtra Forest Department to shoot a tigress in the Bramhapuri region after she killed two persons.

Rationale behind:

  • The death warrant was overturned as a result of a Public Interest Litigation petition by an animal rights activist, which argued that the tigress’s behaviour had been forged by illegal human intrusion into her territory.
  • Forest officials were then forced to capture the problem animal and re-release her in the Bor forest reserve, less than 200 km away, putting another set of villagers in harm’s way.
  • The released tigress went on to kill two others in Bor, and the authorities scrambled to capture her again. Such actions go against conservation science.

Core issues behind: 

    • Translocating a large carnivore as a response to conflict does not work.
  • Large predators need a certain prey density and are territorial, and they would tend to find their way back, even over hundreds of kilometres, to their original habitat.

A 2011 study in Maharashtra showed that moving leopards from one region to another to reduce attacks on livestock only increased attacks on humans. To translocate a tiger in response to man-eating behaviour is absurd.

  • A major challenge for India in the coming years will be to engage rural communities in conservation, because our burgeoning population and a revival in tiger numbers will only increase the intensity of conflict.
  • Coercing terrified villagers to co-exist with man-eaters is the best way to ensure we lose our chance of doing that.

Will consult States on bringing petroleum products within scope of GST, says Modi

News:

The Union government would consult the States on bringing petroleum products into the ambit of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday.

Beyond News:

  • The Centre now levies an excise duty of ₹19.48 a litre on petrol and the States levy VAT ranging between 6% and 48%.
  • Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has repeatedly urged the GST Council to bring petrol and diesel under the GST.
  • Besides petrol and diesel, natural gas, and alcohol are also outside the GST.

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Daily PIB Notes-October 3 and 4 2017

Daily PIB Notes-October 3 and 4 2017

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PIB important articles monthly compilation

1.Environment Minister Inaugurates Global Wildlife Programme :-

  • Two documents were released on the occasion. –
  1. India’s National Wildlife Action Plan (NWAP) for the period 2017-2031
  2. Secure Himalaya

National Wildlife Action Plan 2017-2031 :-

  • The NWAP has been made landscape-based, rather than sanctuary, or national park-based.
  • The Plan focuses on preservation of genetic diversity and sustainable development.

The NWAP has five components, 17 themes, 103 conservation actions and 250 projects.

The five components are –

  1. strengthening and promoting the integrated management of wildlife and their habitats;
  2. adaptation to climate change and promoting integrated sustainable management of aquatic biodiversity in India;
  3. promoting eco-tourism, nature education and participatory management;
  4. strengthening wildlife research and monitoring of development of human resources in wildlife conservation and
  5. enabling policies and resources for conservation of wildlife in India.

2. President Appoints Commission to Examine Sub Categorization of other Backward Classes under Article 340 of the Constitution .

  • Decision will ensure more Backwards among OBC Communities to Avail benefits of Reservation .
  • Chairperson -Justice (Retd.) G. Rohini.
  • The Commission is required to present their Report to the President within a period of twelve weeks of assumption of charge by the Chairperson of the Commission.

3.President of India reached Djibouti :-

Some facts regarding:-

  • Ram Nath Kovind is the first Indian President to visit Djibouti.
  • Djibouti is situated on the Horn of Africa .
  • During the Yemeni crisis of 2015, Djibouti was supportive of Indian efforts to evacuate Indian citizens, and those of other countries, as part of Operation Rahat, and offered use of an air strip.

4.Index of Eight Core Industries (Base: 2011-12=100) August, 2017 

  • Highest for refinery products (28%)
  • Lowest for fertilizers (2.63%)

5. Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2017 to be Held in Hyderabad, November 28-30 .

This year’s theme :“Women First, Prosperity for All”.

6. Rally for rivers :-

  • This is a policy recommendation to plant trees on either side of our rivers to restore them.
  • It is an economic model which has a significant ecological consequence.
Image credit: PIB

7. The Chairman of National Highways Authority of India launches new website and PMIS Mobile App .

Uses :-

  • This website will be usefull for the general public to rate National Highways.
  • The App will facilitate close, in-house monitoring of NHAI projects on a mobile phone.

8. Vice President of india Inaugurates week long celebration of World Space Week :-

Some facts regarding :-

  • The first sounding rocket launched from Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launch Station (TERLS) in 1963.
  • The first Satellite Aryabhata was launched in the year 1975.

9.Cabinet approves renaming of Kandla Port as Deendayal Port.

Some facts regarding :-

  • Kandla is one of the largest port in the country.
  • Since the birth anniversary of Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay was to be celebrated on 25 September, 2017.
  • “It was felt that it would be most appropriate if the decision to rename the Kandla Port as Deendayal Port”- official release.

10.Turtle Sanctuary to be set up in Allahabad :-

  • Aim: To protect the rich aquatic biodiversity of river Ganga from escalating anthropogenic pressures.
  • Development of a Turtle sanctuary in Allahabad along with a River Biodiversity Park at Sangam have been approved under Namami Gange programme. 

 

Daily PIB Notes-October 1 and 2 2017

Daily PIB Notes-October 1 and 2 2017

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PIB important articles monthly compilation

>>CLICK HERE for date wise compilations free<<

1.Rajghat gets Mahatma Statue, for the first time 

  • Rajghat, the Samadhi of the Father of the Nation in the national capital.
  • Unveiled in the occasion of the 148 Birth Anniversary of the champion of country’s independence.
  • The famous message of Gandhi ji “Be the Change You Wish to See” is inscribed on the front side of the pedestal.
  • The new statue would offer another spot for them to pay their respect to the great soul.

2.National waterway 4 -Muktyala to Vijayawada (Krishna River)

As per an MoU signed with Govt. of Andhra Pradesh on 14th April’2016, NW-4 in Andhra Pradesh is proposed to be developed in three phases.

  • Phase-I: -Muktyala to Vijayawada (Krishna River) (82 Km)
  • Phase-II: -Vijayawada to Kakinada (Eluru canal & Kakinada canal) and Rajahmundry to Polavaram stretch of Godavari (233 Km)
  • Phase-III: -Commamur Canal, Buckingham canal and balance stretches of Krishna & Godavari Rivers (573km)

A proposal for Phase-II has been recommended by IWAI board for PIB/Cabinet. Also, a proposal for formation of Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for implementation of the project is under consideration for the approval of Cabinet. The SPV is expected to be formed by November 2017.

Quick revision:

  1. NW-1 or Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly river system is located in India and runs from Haldia to Allahabad across the Ganges, Bhagirathi and Hooghly river systems. It is 1,620 km long, making it the longest waterway in India.
  2. National Waterway 2 (NW-2) is a section of the Brahmaputra River having a length of 891 km between the Bangladesh border and Sadiya.
  3. The West Coast Canal or National Waterway No 3 is a 168-km stretch of this inland navigational route located in Kerala, India and runs from Kollam to Kottapuram.

3.Significance of  Porbandar .

  • The birth place of Mahatma Gandhi.
  • Around 48% of the cargo entering or exiting the ports of the country is from the ports of Gujarat.

Gandhiji date of Birth :- 2 October 1869.

4.Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs Presents swachatta awards:-

  • Fertilizer Cooperative, KRIBHCO gets award for compost marketing.
  • FaceBook Group ‘My Delhi Keep It Clean’ gets Swacchata Award for voluntary citizen action.
  • No Food Waste’ initiative of Coimbattore has been selected in the Innovative Practices category for end-to-end cycle to manage and reduce food waste.
  • Kasturba Gandhi Balika Awasiya Vidyalaya, Ambikar gets the award in the Schools and Colleges category.

5.International day of Older Persons’ – 2nd October 

Theme : Stepping into the Future: Tapping the Talents, Contributions and Participation of Older Persons in Society “.

  • The Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment is running two important schemes namely “Vriddh Jan Grah Yojana “ and “Day Care Centres” for Older Persons.

6.Wardha Dry Port will be constructed over an area of 350 Acres with an investment of Rs.500 Crore .

  • Shri Nitin Gadkari will perform Bhoomi Poojan for Wardha Dry Port .

The Phase-I would involve development of around 25 Ha of the total area, with an estimated cost of Rs.180 Crores (including private investment of Rs. 79 Crore).

The proposed dry port is estimated to generate traffic of almost 7,000-9,000 TEUs in next 5-7 years.

  • The project is expected to attract a direct employment of at least 1000 persons.
  • The project would have the necessary facilities as one-stop shop for the EXIM based industries such as customs clearance facilities, Container Freight Station, Warehousing Space, Cold Storage, Liquid Storage, truck terminals etc.
  •  The site is strategically located around the Industrial belt of Nagpur & Wardha and is well connected to the other industrial regions in Vidarbha.

7.Military Nursing Service celebrates its 92nd Raising Day :-

  • On October 1, 1926 MNS was formally established as permanent nursing service in the Indian Army.
  • National Florence Nightingale Award :-  It is the highest national level award in field of nursing, awarded by the President of India.

 

HINDU EDITORIAL ANALYSIS- October 06 Simplified

HINDU EDITORIAL ANALYSIS- October 06 Simplified

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Hindu editorials are considered important for upsc examination especially for MAINS examination. We are getting several requests about approaching editorial,difficulty in understanding and so on. This is a new initiative to simplify editorials. This is a test version; if you found useful reach us at care@iastoday.in . We will continue only if you found it useful.

{Op-Ed}States in Indian diplomacy: when Sharjah ruler visited Kerala

What this op-Ed is all about:

States role in competitive federalism in the light of recent Sharjah rulers visit to kerala & its associated benefits to india & especially kerala.

Kerala-sharjah deals

Key aspects of Kerala visit:

  • Kerala government honored sutan with a D.Litt from the Calicut University.
  • The ruler had agreed to release 149 Indian prisoners from Sharjah jails.
  • Instead of returning them back, sharjah offers job to continue work there itself.
  • Kerala government handed over some ancient documents about kerala & suthan proclaimed that its his duty to preserve these precious documents.
  • This 5 day visit makes kerala as an example for Narendra Modi’s concept of competitive federalism.

According to our PM- “Team India shall not be limited to the Prime Minister-led team in Delhi, but will also include Chief Ministers and other functionaries as equal partners.”

Author says that Centre always respect states initiatives. The example quoted is about andra pradesh.

  • In his earlier stint as Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, Chandrababu Naidu negotiated with foreign governments to make Hyderabad an IT capital, prompting even presidents and prime ministers to visit the city on state visits. Given his personal reputation, the Government of India invited Mr. Naidu to lead an Indian delegation on IT.

Author says that ,Centre had established the basic mechanism for the States to play an important role in not only implementing foreign policy, but also in formulating it.

Back to history:

  • Earlier there was a period when Pandit Nehru wrote letters to the Chief Ministers, explaining certain aspects of foreign policy, but did not solicit their views, though they could ask questions or make suggestions.
  • But those were the days when he could do no wrong as he was considered infallible and unflappable. But as regional parties began to exert influence at the national level, States began to dictate terms even in foreign policy.
  • The States exercised veto on crucial issues, making it difficult for the Prime Minister to have his way in formulating policy.

Remodelling the MEA

Some examples of states interference:

West Bengal: The Chief Minister of West Bengal stopped then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh from signing an agreement on sharing of Teesta waters with Bangladesh after the agreement was negotiated.

Tamil Nadu: Political parties in Tamil Nadu not only insisted that India should support the U.S. resolution against Sri Lanka in the Human Rights Council, but also stopped the Prime Minister from attending a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) on the ground that Sri Lanka was not safeguarding the interests of the Tamil minority.

Kerala: Insisted that the Italian marines who killed two fishermen should be tried in India and punished here, causing a rift in India’s relations with the European Union.

Authors conclusion:

  • The promise made in the BJP manifesto that States would be involved more in foreign affairs has not been kept as yet as the moves made so far are tentative and half-hearted.
  • A major change in mindset is necessary to accomplish it.
  • The States must also develop expertise on foreign affairs to be able to take responsible decisions in their interaction with foreign lands.

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Role of external state and non state actors in creating challenges to internal security

Role of external state and non state actors in creating challenges to internal security

Bank test, General Studies, UPSC exam

India is facing multi fold thread from external states & non state actors on internal security of the country. State actor includes representative government and their agencies whereas non state actors may include economic institutions like IMF World Bank , International NGOs, Multinational companies, terrorist and religious groups, hackers etc. But non state actors do not represent any countries government but they possess capacity to create significant cross border impacts.

role-of-external-state-and-nonstate-actors-in-creating-challenges-to-internal-security

Role of external state Actors in creating challenges to internal security

1) The state may carry out a limited war against Indian state and this might have ramifications for our internal security too
2) They might support the various insurgent groups, Naxalites, or separatist groups through funding, training or logistics
3) There have been instances where state actors have been responsible for carrying out a limited cyber warfare through hacking and other espionage

Role of Non state Actors in creating challenges to internal security

1) Non state actors from the neighboring country have been carrying out a proxy war since decades in order to “bleed India to death”
2) Certain dubious NGOs and so called civil society organizations also work in a clandestine manner to provoke discontent sections of Indian society which creates internal security issues.
3) Various dubious non state actors run fake currency rackets and drug rackets which pose a challenge to the economic and social security of India.

Apart from above challenges organized attacks on cultural values through media channels, ethnic tensions due to cross border migrations in north east and drugs supplies issues in punjab are also some of the threats to countries internal security. To counter these threats multidimensional approach like NATGRID is welcoming step. Role of citizens is also very important in countering these challenges.

CURRENT AFFAIRS-AUG 31 2017 [UPSC DAILY CAPSULE]

CURRENT AFFAIRS-AUG 31 2017 [UPSC DAILY CAPSULE]

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Daily current affairs for IAS upsc

Mumbai’s flood  {Disaster Management}

mumbai-flood-car

News:

  • The return of the deluge to Mumbai and the paralysis suffered by the city bring up the question of why Indian cities are unable to improve their resilience to extreme weather events.

Beyond News:

  • All this brings back memories of the disaster of 2005 caused by over 99 cm of rainfall in a 24-hour period leaving hundreds dead.
  • Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology in Mumbai have, for instance, provided pathways for nearly 450 sq. km of the city to better prepare for monsoonal floods, using the worst-case scenario of a dozen years ago as the baseline.
  • There should naturally be an inquiry into whether the reforms proposed over time, ranging from clearing of drainage channels and removal of encroachments to the creation of holding ponds to temporarily store large volumes of water, gained any traction.
  • Over time, mangrove wetlands in the eastern fringes and drain paths in the north-west of the city have lost much of their capacity owing to unplanned development.
  • The latest downpour underlines why loss of urban wetlands should be halted and compensatory lakes created.

Lessons from Mumbai:

  • Learnings from Mumbai are important for other cities as well, to prepare for a future in which scientists think there will be more days of short but intense rain spells. Numerical weather prediction has consistently improved.
  • Researchers from IIT Gandhinagar published a forecast on social media warning of 100 mm-plus rainfall for the region on August 29, four days ahead. Indian cities are poorly planned and managed, exposing them to cyclical weather havoc; it is imperative that civic bodies produce flood risk maps and restrict development in the areas.
  • Given that monsoon flooding is inescapable, citizens and communities need to prepare. Introduction of insurance cover for householder losses will provide financial protection and, crucially, require city administrations to provide professional management.
  • If there is a single priority that every city needs, it is to reopen the veins of natural drainage that have been callously built over. Mumbai this year and Chennai’s disastrous flood of 2015 underscore that lesson.

99% of demonetised notes returned, says RBI report {Indian Economy}

News:

  • The Reserve Bank of India’s annual report has finally revealed that as much as Rs. 15.28 lakh crore of the high-value currency that was demonetised in November returned to the central bank.

Beyond News:

  • The central bank was under intense scrutiny since January — after the window for depositing the withdrawn Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 banknotes had closed — for details on the extent of currency that was returned to the banking system in the wake of the government’s decision to withdraw high-value banknotes as a means to combat counterfeiting, black money and the financing of terrorist activities.
  • The latest RBI data showed that 98.96% of the withdrawn currency — at the time of demonetisation the value of old Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes in circulation was Rs. 15.44 lakh crore — was deposited with the banks.
  • Separately, the data showed that the share of newly introduced Rs. 2,000 banknotes in the total value of currency in circulation was 50.2% at end-March 2017.

Govt. approves plan to deploy more troops on the frontline {Security}

  • The number of soldiers available for active combat with the Army is set to dramatically go up by over 57,000 in the wake of the Union cabinet accepting a slew of military reforms on Wednesday.
  • The recommendations were made by a committee headed by Lieutenant General (Retd.) D.B. Shekatkar for enhancing combat capability and rebalancing defence expenditure of the Armed Forces to increase the teeth-to-tail ratio.
  • Defence sources said that all these recommendations are related to the Army and the remaining 34 recommendations pertaining to the Navy, Air Force and Integrated Defence Staff (IDS) are likely to be taken up soon.

BRICS off the wall

  • At Copenhagen in 2009, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, then Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and other leaders of the newly formed BASIC group (with Brazil and South Africa) were sitting in a conference room, negotiating a statement on the failure of the climate change summit.
  • The group of emerging economies had been bolstered by the formation of the BRIC group (Brazil, Russia, India and China, South Africa joined in 2010) with a declared objective of battling “Western hegemony”.
  • The BASIC group had decided they would walk away from Copenhagen without a deal, unless the demands of emerging economies, which couldn’t afford the same emission cuts, were reflected.

Managing embankments {Disaster Management}

News:

  • Life had come to a standstill in the Ganga-Brahmaputra floodplains where large tracts of land were reeling under floods. Everywhere there were submerged houses, broken bridges, and wasted railway tracks.

Beyond News:

  • The fury of the waters in the Kishanganj and Katihar districts of Bihar had cut off the road and rail services in north Bengal, and consequently Northeast India’s connectivity by rail with the rest of India.
  • Access to water and sanitation is difficult. Open defecation is common, and the use of contaminated water leads to a peak in water-borne diseases.
  • Agricultural land is either covered with sand or remains waterlogged.
  • Promoting decentralised management systems is yet to be tested for embankment management, even as participatory irrigation and joint forest management are established practices.
  • But if the past teaches us something, it is that build-and-forget cannot be an option for embankments.
  • If we have to shift from reactive flood protection to year-round flood governance, we must design ways of embankment management in flood-prone areas. Participatory embankment management could be the way forward.

Why go to school?{Education}

  • Governments are too often urged to actively promote formal school and college education among citizens.
  • Many even go on to say that it is the basic duty of the government to make sure every child is given quality education at least until a certain age, and parents should be held accountable for it.
  • Feldmann argues that education is no different from any other investment that seamlessly occurs whenever people are given the economic freedom to fully enjoy its benefits. There might then be very little need for a government to actively promote education among citizens, as they are likely to invest in it anyway.
  • After all, when the right conditions exist, investment in education should happen just as a matter of course. In fact, Feldmann argues, this is very similar to how investment in physical capital works.

The threat of nuclear war{International Relations}

News:

  • North Korea launched its 22nd missile this year, the most it has fired since it started building its own projectiles in 1984.

Beyond News:

  • Like it did in 2009 with Barack Obama, who also had to deal with a North Korean missile fired over Japanese territory (in addition to a nuclear test), Pyongyang seems to be testing U.S. President Donald Trump.
  • This is also a way of driving a wedge into the U.S.’s alliances with Japan and South Korea. Some commentators have raised questions about Washington’s commitment to use all available means, including nuclear weapons, if the North attacks, especially since Pyongyang now possibly possesses the means to hit mainland U.S.
CURRENT AFFAIRS-UPSC DAILY CAPSULE-AUG 30 2017

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‘Criminalising marital rape may become a tool to harass husbands’

  • Marital rape cannot be made a criminal offence as it could become a phenomenon which may destabilise the institution of marriage and an easy tool for harassing the husbands.
  • The Centre, in an affidavit filed in response to pleas seeking criminalising marital rape, said the Supreme Court and various High Courts have already observed the growing misuse of Section 498A (harassment caused to a married woman by her husband and in-laws) of IPC.
  • The reply, filed before a Bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C. Hari Shankar, also sought to include State governments in the matter to know their opinion to avoid any complication at a later stage.
  • The government was responding to various petitions seeking declaration of Section 375 (offence of rape) of the IPC as unconstitutional on the ground that it discriminated against married women being sexually assaulted by their husbands.

MBBS fee structure in three months

News:

  • The R. Rajendra Babu Fee Regulatory Committee will shortly begin the process of verifying the expenses statements provided by private self-financing medical colleges ahead of fixing a final fee for the MBBS course for the academic year 2017-18.

Beyond News:

  • According to Mr. Babu, the committee may not be able to repeal the bank guarantee clause since it originates from the apex court. “On Tuesday I met a delegation of parents and students. They were unanimous in their view that even the Rs. 5 lakh we had fixed as interim fee was excessive. There was no way they could afford a bank guarantee of Rs. 6 lakh.
  • If it fixes a fee that is closer to the Rs. 5 lakh it has already notified, the managements would cry foul. If it fixes a fee that is closer to the Rs. 11 lakh figure, the committee would be accused of caving in to the pressure tactics of the managements.
  • It would not be an exaggeration to say that the MBBS fee in Kerala in the years to come would have its roots in the decision taken by the Fee Regulatory Committee for the academic year 2017-18.

Rain pounds Mumbai to standstill; no relief in sight

News:

  • Heavy rain in Mumbai, which began in the early hours of Tuesday and continued unabated throughout the day, brought the city to a virtual standstill, with lakhs of people stranded across the city as transport systems collapsed.

Beyond News:

  • According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), the city had recorded 297 mm of rain.The BMC, the Mumbai Police and the Chief Minister’s Office issued advisories urging citizens to stay indoors unless absolutely necessary.
  • The IMD has predicted more heavy to very heavy rainfall for the city over the next 24 to 48 hours.

Storage in Cauvery basin reservoirs up by 6.5 tm cft

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RBI cuts repo rate by 25 bps to 6% {economy}

  • As some of the upside risks to inflation have not materialized, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) decided to cut the key policy rate or repo rate by 25 basis points (bps) to 6%, taking it to its lowest in six-and-a-half years.
  • The action was in line with expectations, even as the RBI continued its neutral stance, saying future action would depend on incoming data.

What next?

  1. Monetary Policy Committee is an executive body of 6 members.
  2.  Three members are from RBI while three other members are nominated by the Central Government.
  3. Each member has one vote. In case of a tie, the RBI governor has casting vote to break the tie

Seven species of grasshoppers found [Not much important]

  • A small-granulated dark black and brown colored pygmy grasshopper measuring about 9.07 mm revealed itself to the world in the forests of Chhattisgarh last month.
  • Collected from moist deciduous forests in Korba district, the species was named Coptotettix korbensis.
  • Coptotettix korbensis and Epistaurus tinsensis are two new discoveries in 2017, but what is interesting is that seven species of grasshoppers have been discovered in the forests of Chhattisgarh in a span of just 20 months.
  • Heteropternis raipurensis, a species of short-horned grasshopper, was discovered from Raipur district.

Coasting towards trouble

News: The regional media in Karnataka has resorted to highly suggestive terms to describe the recurrent pattern of communal outburst in coastal Karnataka, particularly in the outlying areas of Mangaluru city, in recent months.

What next?

  •  ‘Republic of coastal Karnataka’- where communal bands rule the roost and the state enjoys little clout as sovereign,
  • ‘Republic of Bellary’ – similar one where, a few years ago, the writ of the mining barons ran.

It is important to distinguish between ideological and social communalism mounted in coastal Karnataka on the one hand and political communalism elsewhere in the State, largely occasioned by the electoral calculations at work, on the other.

What is political communalism?

  • Political communalism employs an event, a monument, a syncretic space or a social cleavage to pit a large group of people against the other.
  • It does not sever all ties of people forged around social division of labour, linguistic affinities, folklore.

What is Social & ideological communalism?

  • Social and ideological communalism as in coastal Karnataka attempts to sever communities from all social ties and employs every possible resource to subserve this end. At the same time, such communalism operates in a context of growing sociality.
  • It marks off a people from the rest when their adherents are akin to one another by invoking religious divide as its justification.

Clearing the confusion over NEET

  • The National Eligibility cum Entrance Test is a common entrance test for aspiring students, based on which they will be allotted seats in undergraduate medical and dental colleges in India, both in the government and private sector.

What next?

  • The test is conducted by the CBSE and is now available in many regional languages.
  • It is also conducted to regulate entry in postgraduate medical courses.
  • NEET was conceived by the Medical Council of India in 2010 as a means of raising the quality of students being admitted to medical and dental colleges and thereby graduates.
  • Several States including Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Gujarat objected to the proposal on various grounds, including the fact that CBSE students would have an unfair advantage as the test would be based on that board’s syllabus.

Beyond these:

  • The test was conducted in 2013 before it ran into rough weather.
  • The Supreme Court, hearing a batch of over 170 petitions contesting various aspects of the test, struck it down, declaring it illegal and unconstitutional.
  • However, in 2016, a five-judge Bench recalled the judgment, and gave the go-ahead to conduct a single common medical entrance test.
  • NEET was conducted in 2016, but a one-time exemption was given for undergraduate admissions.
  • In 2017, NEET was conducted with no exceptions.

Banks should reduce rates for existing borrowers too: RBI

  • With commercial banks having a tendency to reduce interest rates only for prospective customers in order to push new business, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Urjit Patel said he expected lenders to pass on lower loan costs to borrowers who had not received the full benefit of the reductions in the policy rate.
  • RBI cut the policy repo rate by 25 basis points (bps) to 6%. A percentage point comprises 100 bps.
  • The banking regulator noted that banks mainly reduced rates for segments where competition was high as in the case of home loans and personal loans.

[Opinion Ed]How to curb ‘invisible money’

News:

  • The statement by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley recently that the Election Commission has failed to curb ‘invisible money’ in polls is remarkable.

What next?

  • It is unusual for a senior Minister to make adverse remarks against a constitutional body in public. However, there are factual problems with his statement.
  • The Election Commission (EC) works in accordance with Article 324 of the Constitution of India, the Representation of the People Act (RP Act), 1951 and the rules framed by the government there under, and various judgments of the Supreme Court and High Courts.
  • The power to frame rules under the RP Act has not been given to the EC by successive governments, which includes the current one.

[PIB notes, Hindu notes]DAILY IASTODAY CAPSULE-JULY 17 2017

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General Studies-02

 

Pradhan mantri awas yojna

  • GM mustard
  • Genetically modified is one of the technique by which crop can be made draught resistance, early and higher production with less requirement of pest and chemical input
  • GM mustard being developed by the delhi university
  • Currently only cotton have GM or BT license to grow commercially
  • If anyone want commercial license have to apply body under ministry of environment that is genetically engineering appraisal committee [GEAC].
  • After that ministry of environment nod is also needed.

 

  • Scenario of indian police
  • Indian police lake primary target of law enforcement and people also not happy with quality service provided by the police
  • Police system need more reform and restructuring o make it acceptable to common people and professional
  • Policing need neutrality with creative engagement form higher level officer to motivate lower cadre for the work of people welfare and protection

General Studies-03

Medicinal plant in threat

  • This all the medicinal species threatened by over exploitation, less information with people and government lack conservation effort
  • Most of species with medicinal properties come under vulnerable status of IUCN

Egyptian vulture

  • Egyptian vulture noted as threatened and species by IUCN found in northern state
  • Recently breeding site found in Punjab university campus
  • It is good sign of habitation because vulture accommodating in human habitation
  • This is one of the globally threatened species
  • The Egyptian vulture(Neophron percnopterus),one among the globallythreatened vulture speciesfound in India, is classifiedunder the ‘Endangered’ (EN)red list of the InternationalUnion for Conversation ofNature (IUCN). The speciesis popularly known as safed giddh (white vulture) in
  • Egyptian vultures usuallybuild their nests on the cliffsof mountains, roofs ofbuildings and on tree-tops.The species rarely hunt itsfood — the birds mostly feedon carcasses of animals,birds and reptiles.