9 PM Daily Current Affairs Brief – January 11th, 2023

Dear Friends,

We have initiated some changes in the 9 PM Brief and other postings related to current affairs. What we sought to do:

  1. Ensure that all relevant facts, data, and arguments from today’s newspaper are readily available to you.
  2. We have widened the sources to provide you with content that is more than enough and adds value not just for GS but also for essay writing. Hence, the 9 PM brief now covers the following newspapers:
    1. The Hindu  
    2. Indian Express  
    3. Livemint  
    4. Business Standard  
    5. Times of India 
    6. Down To Earth
    7. PIB
  3. We have also introduced the relevance part to every article. This ensures that you know why a particular article is important.
  4. Since these changes are new, so initially the number of articles might increase, but they’ll go down over time.
  5. It is our endeavor to provide you with the best content and your feedback is essential for the same. We will be anticipating your feedback and ensure the blog serves as an optimal medium of learning for all the aspirants.
    • For previous editions of 9 PM BriefClick Here
    • For individual articles of 9 PM BriefClick Here

Current Affairs Compilations for UPSC IAS Prelims 2022

Mains Oriented Articles

GS Paper 1

GS Paper 2

GS Paper 3

Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)

Mains Oriented Articles

GS Paper 1


The beginning of India’s cultural renaissance

Source– The post is based on the article “The beginning of India’s cultural renaissance” published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS1- Indian culture

Relevance– Government policies and interventions for promoting culture of India

News– The article explains the recently held Kashi Tamil Sangamam and its significance

What is the significance of Kashi and Tamil Nadu for Indian culture?

Kashi is one of the oldest living cities of the world. In Tamil Nadu, people speak the world’s oldest language. are towering pillars of ancient Indian civilisation.

Both have rich and old traditions of arts, music, craftsmanship, philosophy, spirituality. Tamil saints lived in Kashi and intensified its spiritual aura. There was a tradition of taking holy Ganga jal to the Rameshwaram temple.

What were the main events of Kashi Tamil Sangamam?

People from all walks of life from Tamil Nadu visited Kashi. They experienced the city’s traditions and its iconic landmarks such as the Kashi Vishwanath temple.

The government organised a ‘textiles conclave’ during the Sangamam. Several eminent personalities of different segments of the textile industry from Tamil Nadu and Kashi shared their experiences and exchanged ideas at a session on Amrit Kaal Vision 2047.

The textiles conclave also dwelled on wooden toys.

What is the significance of this sangamam?

Sangamam created a unique platform to rediscover and integrate our heritage and ancient knowledge with modern thought, philosophy, technology and craftsmanship. This creates a new body of knowledge and fosters innovations. It will help our artisans, weavers, entrepreneurs and traders.

For instance, Varanasi is well known for Banarasi silk saris. Kancheepuram is famous for its shimmering silk saris. Weavers and entrepreneurs from both regions have a lot to gain from interacting with each other.

The textiles sector has great job-creating potential. India’s textiles market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12-13% to nearly $2 trillion by 2047s. Kashi and Tamil Nadu have a key role to play to achieve this vision.

The Sangamam was in step with the entire spectrum of this government’s policies. These policies have focused on welfare of the poorest of the poor, love for Indian culture, and promoting local industries and handicrafts.

The Sangamam has ignited a new cultural zeal in India. It is the beginning of India’s cultural renaissance that is not limited to the bonding of Tamil Nadu and Kashi. It will extend to all cultures of this great country.

GS Paper 2


Indian campuses of foreign universities are a win-win for students and institute

Source– The post is based on the article “Indian campuses of foreign universities are a win-win for students and institute” published in The Indian Express on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS2- Issues related to development and management of education

Relevance– Higher educational institutions

News– The article explains the recent draft UGC regulations on allowing foreign educational institutions to set up their campuses in India.

Why draft UGC regulations on allowing foreign educational institutions in India is a win-win situation?

These regulations have an in-built mechanism to ensure the entry of only the highest-quality institutions. Foreign higher education institutions intending to come to India will be experienced in imparting education. They will have robust financial resources, integrity, long-term commitment, and a better understanding of the venture’s feasibility.

Campuses of foreign HEIs will attract students from the Global South. It will provide an environment for interaction.

It will give more viable options to Indian students who opt for overseas education. Many students are not able to go for overseas education due to family or financial situations. Foreign HEIs will provide opportunities for students who do not wish to immigrate to stay in India and study at a foreign university.

The National Institute of Educational Planning and Administration recently conducted a study to gather reliable information on foreign universities’ priorities regarding establishing their campuses in India. Several universities ranking in the top 200 have expressed their interest in considering India as a destination.

Foreign HEIs will foster healthy competition among Indian institutions to better their standards and establish world-class institutions.

Institutions of Eminence have made considerable progress in multidisciplinary teaching and research, leveraging technology for effective teaching-learning, and promoting the internationalisation of higher education. They and other institutes in India can be potential partners in research collaborations with FHEIs in cutting-edge areas.

How other government initiatives can be helpful for foreign HEIs?

The establishment of foreign campuses will be facilitated through the provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act 1999 and its rules. Foreign HEIs can establish campuses under Companies Act, 2013; Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008; and as a joint venture with an existing Indian entity.

The biggest incentive for FHEIs is that there is no need to keep a corpus fund and they can repatriate their funds to the parent university.

The Union budget announced on February 1, 2022, emphasized foreign direct investment (FDI) in education.

Following NEP 2020, the UGC has been proactively working to meet the aspirations of Indian higher education institutes. It is providing them with more autonomy and bringing out progressive regulation. The draft regulations on FHEIs consider the current and desired stages of internationalizing Indian higher education.

How will these reforms transform higher education?

Regulations regarding campuses of FHEIs along with the other recent initiatives like the joint, and dual degrees with foreign universities, and the regulations for enabling the Indian universities to open campuses in other countries should not be read in silos.

The cumulative effects of the enabling provisions must be seen as a catalyst for transforming higher education in India.


Barking up the wrong tree

Source– The post is based on the article “Barking up the wrong tree” published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS2- Salient feature of Representation of People Act

Relevance– Issues related to electoral reforms

News– The article explains the issue of remote voting by migrants.

Recently, the EC proposed using isolated remote voting machines to enable voters who are residents elsewhere to vote in their home constituencies.

What are issues with the proposed remote voting machines?

First, it will have to ensure that all applicants for remote voting are able to do so without hindrance, and all applications are processed fairly without selective exclusions. It is necessary to define under what conditions will remote voting be denied.

It is not sufficient just to define a protocol. There is a need to ensure that all applications and the decisions on them are publicly verifiable, from both remote and home locations. This can only be done with verifiable zero-trust technology that is linked to digitisation of the electoral rolls. It requires a thorough examination.

Second, it needs to ensure that a person allowed to vote remotely is invalidated for local voting. The two lists will be at different locations. So, the correctness will not be easy to demonstrate in a publicly verifiable way.

Third, there is a need to decide the place for consolidation and counting of both the electronic votes and the VVPAT slips. It needs to decide whether counting happens at the remote location, or at the home constituency after consolidation. In the former case, disclosing the remote voting results will compromise vote secrecy.

Fourth, there are questions regarding polling agents at remote locations.

These problems require considerably more due diligence. They will also require a significant shift of emphasis from designing electronics to ensuring verifiability.

What are issues with current use of EVM by the Election Commission?

The Election Commission’s emphasis on unverifiable voting machines has been a long-standing problem.

Software-independence is a necessary condition for verifiability. A standalone EVM, whichever way its components are internally connected, cannot be software-independent.

The German Constitutional Court ruled against EVM use in 2009.

U.S. National Academy of Sciences recommended against pure electronic voting in a public report in 2018.

One method to ensure software-independence is to audit the electronic results with a count of the VVPATs. The procedure for doing this is called risk limiting audit. Unfortunately, it appears that election results are declared in India without any VVPAT audits.

Even the Supreme Court’s direction of auditing five randomly selected EVMs in every Assembly constituency against VVPAT counts appears to be without any sound statistical basis.


Japan’s national security strategy: Why if Japan goes nuclear, India should welcome the decision

Source– The post is based on the article “Japan’s national security strategy: Why if Japan goes nuclear, India should welcome the decision” published in The Indian Express on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS2- Effects of policies of developed and developing countries on India interests

Relevance– India and Japan defence relationship

News– The article explains the recent National Security Strategy doctrine releases by Japan

What are the main points of recent National Security Strategy doctrine releases by Japan?

Chinese military power is growing exponentially. In less than a decade, the Chinese nuclear arsenal would match the US and Russia. Expectations are low that the US would have the will or the capacity to bring China to the arms control table.

North Korea is continuing with its nuclear proliferation programme. It is perhaps now unstoppable. Ballistic missile tests by it have violated Japanese airspace. The mood in South Korea is slowly turning in favour of its own nuclearisation.

Extended deterrence including nuclear weapons is the cornerstone of the US-Japan alliance. It allowed Japan to not have its own nuclear arsenal. Now it is no longer possible to continue with it due to the rising Chinese threat. Japan is worried about the future adequacy of its alliance with the USA.

It calls for Japan to strengthen the deterrence and response capabilities of its alliance with the US. It includes extended deterrence by the US that is backed by its full range of capabilities, including nuclear.

It adds that Japan would strengthen its defence capabilities to take “primary responsibility” for its defence, without excluding support from the US. It will develop autonomous capabilities through a sustained military build-up, and procure deep strike weapons. These are the green shoots of strategic autonomy.

It will invest in the Indo-Pacific and the Quad.

What can be inferred from this national security strategy by Japan?

The unstated part is the possibility of nuclear-sharing by Japan. If implemented, this may be new to Asia. But, it is a long-standing US practice with its key NATO allies in Europe.

The second unstated option is the possibility of Japan itself acquiring nuclear weapons. The document makes no reference to this. But there are references to the US finding it increasingly difficult to maintain a free and open international order.

Why should India welcome the Japanese inclination for nuclear weapons?

India and Japan privileged nuclear disarmament as a priority. Their ways are separate. But there comes a time when this priority must be subordinated to the demands of national security.

India reached this conclusion reluctantly in 1998. If Japan reaches the same conclusion, it too would have a good reason due to increasing Chinese and North Korean threat. It has technological capabilities for that.

A multipolar Indo-Pacific can be truly multipolar only if Japan is assured of national self-defence.

As a strategic partner and friend, India should respect the decision of Japan.


Bad and ugly – A Governor’s departure from convention has set off unsavoury events

Source: The post is based on the following articles

“Bad and ugly – A Governor’s departure from convention has set off unsavoury events” published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023.

“The Guvs Are Off – Governors in some opposition-ruled states are keeping bills pending for long, violating constitutional spirit” published in The Times of India on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS 2 – Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary.

Relevance: About the role of the governor in the assembly.

News: Recently, the Tamil Nadu governor walked out of the Tamil Nadu assembly and also skipped a few portions of the government pamphlet. The other substantive issue is the governor also sitting on bills passed by the legislature.

About the role of the governor in passing bills

Article 200 stipulates that a governor shall “declare” that he/she is giving assent to a bill or withholding consent. Governors can forward a bill to the President for consideration or return a bill with a message suggesting changes. But if the house passes the bill again, the governor has to give assent.

The Supreme Court has repeatedly ruled that legislative power of governors is extremely limited and that governors are bound by the aid and advice of the cabinet.

However, there is constitutional and judicial silence on how long a governor can keep a bill pending.

Can the governor skip a part of the government text?

According to the constitutional convention, the President or the Governor should not depart from the text, as it is nothing but a statement of policy of the elected government.

Read more: Kerala Government’s Bills to remove the Governor as Chancellor of State Universities
What should be done?

The events highlight the consequences of a confrontationist attitude on the part of constitutional functionaries. So, in the longer term, the role of the Governor in the country’s constitutional scheme needs a thorough overhaul.

The governor is a key intermediary in the Centre-state relationship. The Constitution gives Parliament and the Union government the upper hand when laws of the state clash with those of the Centre. The governors should aid in maintaining this status quo.

Read more: The Governor is under the Constitution, not above it

GS Paper 3


Ozone hole, filling up now: What this means for climate action

Source: The post is based on an article “Ozone hole, filling up now: What this means for climate actionpublished in The Indian Express on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS 3 – Climate Change

Relevance: recovery of ozone

News: An UN-based report suggests that the ozone hole of the world is expected to be completely repaired by 2066.

How did the recovery of the ozone hole happen?

It happened due to the successful elimination of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODSs), through the implementation of the Montreal Protocol of 1989.

As per the report, 99 percent of the substances banned by the Montreal Protocol have been eliminated from use resulting in a recovery of the ozone layer.

What is ozone and what are the reasons behind its depletion?

Ozone, a molecule having three Oxygen atoms (O3) is found mainly in the stratosphere. It absorbs ultraviolet rays coming from the Sun. Ozone hole refers to the reduction in concentration of the ozone molecules.

In the 1980s, scientists began to notice a sharp drop in the concentration of ozone because of the use of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) that were used extensively in the air conditioning, refrigeration, paints, and furniture industries.

What were the key findings of the UN based assessment?

As per the assessment, if current policies continued to be implemented, the ozone layer was expected to recover to 1980 values by 2066 over Antarctica, by 2045 over the Arctic, and by 2040 for the rest of the world.

Moreover, ozone-depleting substances are greenhouse gases which are more dangerous than carbon dioxide.

Therefore, the effective implementation of Montreal Protocol and elimination of ODSs would ensure the avoidance of 0.5 to 1 degree Celsius of warming by 2050.

Hence, with these views the Montreal Protocol was amended in 2016 to extend its mandate over hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) that have replaced the CFCs in industrial use.

What are HFCs and what are the amendment made in the Montreal Protocol?

HFCs do not cause much damage to the ozone layer but are very powerful greenhouse gases.

The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol seeks to eliminate 80-90 percent of the HFCs currently in use by the year 2050. This is expected to prevent another 0.3 to 0.5 degree Celsius of global warming by the end of the century.

Moreover, the success of Montreal Protocol is often cited as an example to curtail the other greenhouse gases. However, it might not be possible.

Why other greenhouse gases cannot be curtailed like ODSs?

ODSs are not widely emitted and hence their limitation was successful but the emission of carbon dioxide is linked to the harnessing of energy. Almost every economic activity leads to carbon dioxide emissions.

For example, renewable energies have considerable carbon footprints because their manufacturing, transport, and operation involves the use of fossil fuels.

Further, unlike ODSs which were limited to the specific industry, greenhouse gas emissions are not limited to a few industries or economic sectors, but affects the entire economy.


Conservative budgeting – Fiscal space should be used carefully

Source: The post is based on an article “Conservative budgeting – Fiscal space should be used carefullypublished in Business Standard on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS 3 – Indian Economy

Relevance: ways to use additional fiscal resources

News: The Union government is confident of achieving the fiscal deficit target of 6.4 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) in the current fiscal year.

What has led the government in achieving the fiscal deficit target?

It is because of conservative budgeting at multiple levels. For example, the government budgeted for 9.6 percent growth in its tax revenue over the revised estimates for 2021-22.

However, the revised estimates calculated have grown by more than 23 per cent over the previous year.

Further, the government also assumed in nominal terms the Indian economy would grow by just about 11.1 per cent in the current fiscal year.

But, the first advance estimates for national income, released last week, show the economy is expected to grow by 15.4 percent this fiscal year.

This expansion in the economy gives the government additional space to spend while maintaining the required fiscal deficit as percentage of GDP leading to higher growth and tax collection.

However, underestimating growth and revenue collection can have an effect on overall expenditure efficiency but it is also a viable option.

How underestimating growth and revenue is beneficial?

Government has often struggled in the past to meet the fiscal-deficit target and ended up either reducing capital expenditure or shifting revenue expenditure outside the Budget. 

However, adopting such measures in the present situation where both the debt-GDP ratio and fiscal deficit are at higher levels could create risks.

Further, it is also hard to anticipate both expenditure and revenue collection with precision at the time of presenting the Budget. Therefore, it is sensible for the government to adopt a conservative approach in Budget making.

Moreover, the government can also adopt a few measures when it has more fiscal space available in the year.

What measures can be adopted by the government when it has more fiscal space?

  1. a) reduce the deficit and aim to reach the stated medium-term fiscal targets as early as possible, b) deploy additional resources in building physical and social infrastructure, c) spend more on education and health, d) spend additional resources on defence.

However, to utilize its additional fiscal resources, the government needs to have a clear and transparent medium-term fiscal consolidation roadmap, else it may end up using additional fiscal space without any longer-term benefit.


Get Wet, Get Well – Wetlands are nature’s shock absorbers. Their degradation in cities is real bad news for urban future

Source: The post is based on the article “Get Wet, Get Well – Wetlands are nature’s shock absorbers. Their degradation in cities is real bad news for urban future” published in The Times of India on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS 3 – Environment and Bio-diversity Conservation.

Relevance: About the role of the governor in the assembly.

News: Data from Wetlands International shows India has lost nearly two of five wetlands in the last 30 years, while 40% of them can’t support aquatic animals.

About the report on Wetlands

A total of 75 Indian wetlands with a surface area of over a million hectares are designated as wetlands of international importance under the Ramsar Convention, which India ratified in 1982.

But even the largest among them, the Sundarbans wetland, has lost around 25% of its mangroves due to erosion over the past three decades.

Vadodara lost 30% of its wetlands between 2005 and 2018, while Hyderabad has lost 55% of its semi-quatic bodies due to inefficient waste management and unchecked urban development.

Encroachment and construction on Pallikaranai marsh in Chennai have made cities susceptible to flooding.

Read more: 40% of wetlands in India lost in last 30 yrs: Experts
Why are wetlands significant?

Wetlands are vitally important for water storage and aquifer recharge and play the role of storm buffers and flood mitigators. Wetlands are also natural carbon sinks, making them crucial for combating climate change.

What are the reasons for losing wetlands?

The majority of the wetlands are lost due to unplanned infrastructure, pollution, over-exploitation and reclamation, and reduction in sediments due to upstream dams.

Ignoring urban wetlands: The government has notified the Wetlands (Conservation and Management) Rules, 2017 to serve as a regulatory framework for conservation efforts. But most of the assistance provided by the Centre to states for the conservation of wetlands is directed towards the notified Ramsar sites. Thus ignoring urban wetlands.

What should be done to protect wetlands?

-The government should create greater awareness about the benefits of wetland conservation.

-Urban planning should actively incorporate the preservation of wetlands like that of Delhi Master Plan 2041.


Inside the growing rift in ethanol economy

Source: The post is based on the article “INSIDE THE GROWING RIFT IN ETHANOL ECONOMY” published in the Livemint on 11th January 2023.

Syllabus: GS 3 – Energy.

Relevance: About the advantages and challenges in increasing ethanol-blending.

News: Today, the two-wheeler industry is looking at green and sustainable future mobility solutions spanning across electric, hybrid and alternate fuels. In such a scenario, ethanol-based products are an important option.

About the global success story of ethanol in Brazil

The biggest success story for ethanol in the world right now is Brazil. The country started blending ethanol with gasoline for transport in the mid-1970s.

A vast majority of vehicles on the road in Brazil—about 86%—are powered by flex fuel technology that gives consumers the flexibility to use ethanol blends between 20% and 85%. The country has achieved an average blend of 48%, by far the highest in the world.

What are the advantages of increasing ethanol blending?

a) It is a replacement for imported crude and also helps to save foreign exchange, b) It is also cleaner with lower carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon tailpipe emissions, c) As ethanol is produced by fermenting sugarcane juice, it has also been lauded as the panacea for the surplus sugar issue.

Read more: India has achieved the target of 10% ethanol blending ahead of schedule
What are the challenges in increasing ethanol blending?

Despite various promotion measures, India has only achieved a 10% blend under its Ethanol Blended Petrol(EBP) Programme (10% of ethanol blended with 90% of petrol).

While India has ample sugarcane, the country doesn’t yet have enough fermentation capacity required to make ethanol.

The rise in the blending percentage of ethanol in petrol would make fuel distribution more complex. For instance, To achieve E20 itself, require separate fuel pumps, tanks to store the fuels, and tankers to transport them. This sort of a supply chain will come at a significant cost for oil marketing firms.

In India, older vehicles don’t get phased out automatically. So, India would need to keep the supply of E10 fuel besides operating additional pumps with higher blends.

According to Niti Aayog, the price of flex-fuel four-wheelers could shoot up in the range of ₹17,000-25,000. These are only preliminary estimates and the actual figures could be higher.

Ethanol has 27% less energy than petrol. So, with higher levels of blending, the fuel economy of the vehicle will diminish by 4-8%. In short, the consumer will pay more for a less fuel-efficient vehicle.

Promoting ethanol will directly promote Sugarcane, which is a water guzzling crop. 

Above all, ethanol doesn’t even solve the entire problem as diesel is the majority transport fuel in the country (petrol accounts for 31% of transport fuel consumption).

Read more: Why India’s policy to produce ethanol-blended petrol is short-sighted
What should be done for increasing ethanol blending?

Sugar-producing states of Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra can initially adapt to the ethanol economy.

India requires a major overhaul of not only vehicles that would need flex fuel engines but also the infrastructure to support various fuel types.

The government is yet to stipulate a roadmap for flex fuel technologies. Ideally, the government should set targets for emissions and create a road map.

Directly incentivize consumers like Brazil: In Brazil, pure ethanol has been incentivized by lower taxation—it is approximately 30% cheaper than E27 fuel. Consumers were also directly incentivized through tax exemptions for buying flex fuel vehicles. India can follow a similar approach.


Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)

Bhopal tragedy compensation fund of ₹50cr unutilised: SC

Source: The post is based on the article Bhopal tragedy compensation fund of ₹50cr unutilised: SCpublished in The Hindu on 11th January 2023

What is the News?

The Supreme Court has asked the Centre why it is asking for more funds from Union Carbide for the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy pointing out that Rs 50 crore of the compensation amount is lying unutilised. 

The government has sought additional funds of over Rs 7,400 crore from Union Carbide. The American company had already paid $470 million (Rs 715 crore at the time of settlement in 1989).

What is Bhopal Gas Tragedy?

In the early hours of December 3, 1984, methylisocyanate (MIC) gas leaked from a plant operated by Union Carbide India Limited (UCIL)  at Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh).

The gas drifted over the densely populated neighbourhoods around the plant, killing thousands of people immediately and creating a panic as tens of thousands of others attempted to flee Bhopal.

The final death toll was estimated to be between 15,000 and 20,000. Some half a million survivors suffered respiratory problems, eye irritation or blindness, muscular dystrophy and other maladies resulting from exposure to the toxic gas.

Several studies have found out that babies born to women exposed to gas were significantly more likely to have “congenital malformations” than those born to women unexposed to gas.

Note: Congenital anomalies comprise a wide range of abnormalities of body structure or function that are present at birth and are of prenatal origin.

What was the government’s response to the Bhopal Gas Tragedy?

The government passed the Bhopal Gas Leak Act in March 1985 which allowed it to act as the legal representative for victims. 

In 1989, the Indian government and Union Carbide struck an out-of-court deal and compensation of $470 million was given by UC. The Supreme Court also upheld it in a judgment. 

What is Methyl Isocyanate (MIC)?

Methyl Isocyanate is a colourless liquid used for making pesticides. MIC is safe when maintained properly. 

The chemical is highly reactive to heat. When exposed to water, the compounds in MIC react with each other causing a heat reaction. 


Study sheds light on how blackbuck survive challenges

Source: The post is based on the article “Study sheds light on how blackbuck survive challenges” published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023

What is the News?

A study conducted by the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has shed light on how Blackbuck in India have fared in the face of natural and human-induced challenges to their survival.

What is Blackbuck?

The blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra) is also known as the Indian antelope.

Features: Males have corkscrew-shaped horns and black-to-dark brown coats, while females are fawn-coloured.

Distribution: They are found only in the Indian subcontinent. In India, they are mainly seen in three broad clusters across India-northern, southern, and eastern regions.

Click Here to read more

How has Blackbuck survived in the face of natural and human-induced challenges?

In spite of immense losses in grassland habitats across India, blackbucks seem to have well-adapted to human-altered landscapes and their numbers are beginning to show an upward trend.

Researchers studied how they survived these challenges. They found that an ancestral blackbuck population first split into two groups: the northern and the southern cluster. 

Next, the team found that despite all odds, male blackbucks appear to disperse more than expected, thus contributing to gene flow (gene flow is the transfer of genetic material from one population to another) in this species. Females, on the other hand, appear to stay largely within their native population ranges. 

This has helped them to survive in a human-dominated landscape.


DAC gives nod to purchase indigenous defence systems

Source: The post is based on the article “DAC gives nod to purchase indigenous defence systems” published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023

What is the News?

The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has accorded Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for three capital acquisition proposals.

These include: 1) Helicopter-launched Nag (HELINA) anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM), 2) Very short-range air defence systems (VSHORAD) and 3) Brahmos Launcher and Fire Control System(FCS) for naval ships. 

What is the Helicopter-launched Nag(HELINA)?

Click Here to read

What are Very short-range air defence systems(VSHORAD)?

Click Here to read

What is Brahmos Launcher and Fire Control System(FCS)?

Brahmos Launcher and Fire Control System(FCS) are being procured for the Naval Ships namely Shivalik class of ships and the Next Generation Missile Vessels(NGMVs).

With their induction, these ships would have enhanced capability of carrying out maritime strike operations, interdicting and destroying enemy warships and merchant’s vessels.

What are Next Generation Missile Vessels(NGMVs)?

Next Generation Missile Vessels(NGMVs) are a planned class of anti-surface warfare corvettes for the Indian Navy.

Under this programme, the Indian Navy intends to acquire six advanced missile vessels. Ships in this class will be armed with Anti-ship missiles or Land-attack missiles like BrahMos. The ships will feature advanced stealth features like a low radar cross section (RCS), infrared, acoustic and magnetic signatures.


No change in air quality in most cities covered by national programme

Source: The post is based on the article “No change in air quality in most cities covered by national programme” published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023

What is the News?

The Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air has released a report analyzing the impact of the National Clean Air Programme(NCAP), India’s first national policy on curbing air pollution.

What is the National Clean Air Programme(NCAP)?

The National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) was launched by the Ministry of Environment Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC) in 2019.

Aim: To bring a 20%-30% reduction in pollution levels from PM2.5 and PM10 particles by 2024, using 2017 pollution levels as a base.

Coverage: It covers 132 of India’s most polluted or so-called non-attainment cities. This is defined as a city whose air quality did not meet the national ambient air quality standards from 2011 to 2015.

Funding: For disbursing funds, the Central Pollution Control Board which coordinates the programme, only considers levels of PM10, the relatively larger, coarser particles.

– However PM2.5, the smaller, more dangerous particles, aren’t monitored as robustly in all cities, mostly due to the lack of equipment.

– Cities are required to quantify improvement starting 2020-21, which requires 15% and more reduction in the annual average PM10 concentration and a concurrent increase in “good air” days to at least 200. 

– Anything fewer will be considered ‘low’ and the funding, provided by the Centre via the Environment Ministry, consequently be reduced.

What has been the progress of NCAP according to the report?

Air quality has improved in only 49 out of 131 cities in 2021-22 from the previous financial year’s figure.

Less polluted cities like Bengaluru, Mumbai and Chennai are seeing an increase in pollutants while the worst ones like Ghaziabad marginally improved their air quality.

Only 38 of the 131 cities that were given annual pollution reduction targets under agreements signed between State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs), Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) and the Centre managed to meet the targets for 2021-22.

Suggestion: The report estimates India will need to install more than 300 manual air quality monitoring stations per year to reach the NCAP goal of 1,500 monitoring stations by 2024. So far, only 180 stations were installed over the past four years.


U.S. Ambassadors fund to help restore Paigah Tombs complex in Hyderabad

Source: The post is based on the article “U.S. Ambassadors fund to help restore Paigah Tombs complex in Hyderabad” published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023

What is the News?

The US Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation will extend financial support of $250,000 towards the conservation and restoration of six of the Paigah tombs.

What are Paigah Tombs?

Paigah Tombs or Maqhbara Shams al-Umara are a necropolis (a large, designed cemetery with elaborate tomb monuments) located in Hyderabad, Telangana.

They were built in the 18th and 19th centuries and belonged to the nobility of the Paigah family who served the Nizam of Hyderabad in various capacities.

Architecture: These tombs are made out of lime and mortar with beautiful inlaid marble carvings. It consists of marvelous carvings and motifs in floral designs and inlaid marble tile works.

– The tombs are the finest examples of the enthralling Indo-Islamic architecture, which is a blend of both features of Asaf Jahi and Rajputana style.

– Stucco work found in Paigah Tombs doesn’t exist anywhere else in India. It has incredible lattice screens, minarets and detailing.


SC demonetisation verdict: What is delegated legislation

Source: The post is based on the article “SC demonetisation verdict: What is delegated legislation” published in Indian Express on 11th January 2023

What is the News?

The Supreme Court has upheld the Government of India’s 2016 decision on demonetisation.

One of the key questions to decide for the Supreme Court was whether Parliament gave excessive powers to the Centre under the law to demonetise currency. The majority ruling upheld the validity of the delegated legislation but the dissenting verdict noted that excessive delegation of power is arbitrary.

What is Delegated Legislation?

Parliament routinely delegates certain functions to authorities established by law since every aspect cannot be dealt with directly by the lawmakers themselves. This delegation of powers is noted in statutes, which are commonly referred to as delegated legislation.

The delegated legislation would specify operational details, giving power to those executing the details. Regulations and by-laws under the legislation are classic examples of delegated legislation.

What was the delegation of power in the demonetisation case?

Section 26(2) of the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 essentially gives powers to the Centre to notify that a particular denomination of currency ceases to be legal tender.

Here, Parliament, which enacted the RBI Act is essentially delegating the power to alter the nature of legal tender to the central government. The Centre exercised that power by issuing a gazette notification, which is essentially the legislative basis for the demonetisation exercise.

What was the Supreme Court verdict on demonetization?

Click Here to read

Why is excessive delegation power an issue?

In a 1959 landmark ruling in Hamdard Dawakhana v Union of India, the Supreme Court struck down the delegation of powers on the grounds that it was vague. 

In this case, the Constitution Bench considered the validity of certain provisions of the Drug and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act that prohibited advertisements of certain drugs for the treatment of certain diseases and dealt with the powers of search, seizure and entry.

The Court held that the central government’s power of specifying diseases and conditions as given in the act is ‘uncanalised’, ‘uncontrolled’ and going beyond the permissible boundaries of valid delegation. Hence, the same was deemed unconstitutional.


RBI’s revised guidelines for locker management

Source: The post is based on the article “RBI’s revised guidelines for locker management published in The Hindu on 11th January 2023

What is the News?

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has released revised bank locker rules. The rules will take effect from January 1, 2023.

Why were these revised bank locker rules released by RBI?

A Union Bank customer had approached the Supreme Court stating that the lender broke his locker illegally citing an incorrect assertion that he had not paid dues between 1993-94. 

The Chief Manager of the bank admitted to having incorrectly broken the locker and apologized for the same. 

The court ordered the lender to compensate the customer. The court separately added that the existing regulations on locker management were “inadequate and muddled” with no uniformity in rules.

What are the key provisions of the revised bank locker rules?

Agreement: While allotting lockers, banks have to enter into an agreement with the customer on duly stamped paper, with a copy being provided to both parties.

Term Deposit: Banks must obtain a term deposit from the customer at the time of locker allotment to save them from a potential situation where the customer neither operates the locker nor pays the rent. 

– The term deposit would cover rent for three years and charges to break open the vault if the need arises.

Nominee: The nominee will get full access to the locker if the original keeper dies without a will.

Compensation: Banks will be eligible to pay in case of any loss of locker content resulting from the bank’s negligence.

– However, banks will not be liable for any damage or loss of locker contents caused by natural calamities or acts of God such as earthquakes, floods, lightning, or thunderstorms, or any act attributable to the customer’s sole fault or negligence.

Refund: If the locker rent is collected in advance, the proportionate amount would require to be refunded to the customer should s/he surrender the account.

Not liable for content in lockers: Banks would not be under any liability to insure the contents of the locker against any risk whatsoever. Additionally, under no circumstances can it offer insurance products to its customers for insuring the contents.

Rent not paid: Banks would reserve the discretion to break open the locker with regards to the due procedure if the rent stands pending for three years in a row. They must however inform the user and accord him ‘reasonable opportunity’ to withdraw the deposited contents.


New technique of corrosion-resistant nickel alloy coatings can replace toxic chrome plating

Source: The post is based on the articleNew technique of corrosion-resistant nickel alloy coatings can replace toxic chrome platingpublished in PIB on 10th January 2023

What is the News?

A team of Indian scientists have developed a new method of depositing nickel alloy coatings on high-performance materials in engineering applications. This method can replace the use of environmentally toxic chrome coatings.

What is Chrome plating?

Chrome plating or coating is a finishing process that involves the application of chromium onto the surface of a metal workpiece or object.

The newly formed chrome layer works to protect the underlying workpiece or object from corrosion while improving its aesthetics in the process.

Chrome coatings have been used in the plastic bottling industry to improve the service life of die-casting components.

But the process of chrome plating is toxic and must comply with stringent standards for permissible exposure limits for hexavalent chromium. Finding a procedure for adhering to this limit is a challenge for scientists.

What have the Indian Scientists developed?

A team of Indian scientists have developed a new method of depositing nickel alloy coatings on high-performance materials in engineering applications.

This method was developed using a lab-scale process that employs pulsed current electroplating, which is environmentally friendly and has a high production capacity. Hence, it can replace the use of environmentally toxic chrome coatings.


Indian researchers developing treatment for rare genetic disorder ‘Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy’

Source: The post is based on the article “Indian researchers developing treatment for rare genetic disorder ‘Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy” published in The Hindu on 10th January 2023

What is the News?

Researchers in India are working on developing an affordable treatment for a rare and incurable genetic disorder called Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy with over 5 lakh cases in the country.

What is Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy?

Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a genetic disorder. The disorder is marked by progressive muscle degeneration and weakness due to alterations of a protein called “dystrophin” that helps keep muscle cells intact. 

The condition is predominantly seen in boys, but in rare cases, it can also affect girls.

Symptoms: Muscle weakness is the principal symptom of DMD. It can begin as early as age 2 or 3, first affecting the proximal muscles (those close to the core of the body) and later affecting the distal limb muscles (those close to the extremities). The affected child might have difficulty jumping, running, and walking.

Treatment: Currently, there is no cure for DMD, but improvements in integrative treatment can slow down the disease progression and thereby, extend the life expectancy of DMD patients.

What are the researchers from India developing?

The current therapeutic options available to treat DMD are minimal and highly expensive treatment with costs shooting up to Rs 2-3 crore per child a year and are mostly imported from abroad, accelerating dosing costs and putting them out of reach for most families.

That is why researchers from India are working on an affordable therapeutics for DMD.


3,700 dams in India will lose 26% storage capacity due to sedimentation by 2050: UN study

Source: The post is based on the article 3,700 dams in India will lose 26% storage capacity due to sedimentation by 2050: UN studypublished in Economic Times on 10th January 2023

What is the News?

According to a study by the United Nations, around 3,700 dams in India will lose 26% of their total storage by 2050.

This study was conducted by the United Nations University Institute on Water, Environment and Health (UNU-INWEH) also known as the UN’s think tank on water.

What are the key findings of the study?

Dams in India: Around 3,700 large dams in India will lose 26% of their total storage by 2050 due to the accumulation of sediments which can undermine water security, irrigation and power generation in future.

– Note: In 2015, the Central Water Commission reported that among 141 large reservoirs which are over 50 years old, one quarter had lost at least 30% of their initial storage capacity.  

Dams Globally: Trapped sediment has already robbed roughly 50,000 large dams worldwide of an estimated 13 to 19% of their combined original storage capacity.

– The study estimates that 6,316 billion cubic meters of initial global storage in 47,403 large dams in 150 countries will decline to 4,665 billion cubic metres causing 26% storage loss by 2050.

– This loss is roughly equal to the annual water use of India, China, Indonesia, France and Canada combined.

Dams in Asia Pacific region: In 2022, the Asia-Pacific region, the world’s most heavily dammed region, is estimated to have lost 13% of its initial dam storage capacity. It will have lost nearly a quarter (23%) of its initial storage capacity by 2050.   

– This region is home to 60% of the world’s population and water storage is crucial for sustaining water and food security.

Dams in China: China, the world’s most heavily dammed nation has lost about 10% of its storage and will lose a further 10% by 2050.


What ails the Ken-Betwa River link project?

Source: The post is based on the article “What ails the Ken-Betwa River link project?” published in The Hindu on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Environment Relevance: concerns associated with the Ken-Betwa Link Project. News: The Steering Committee of the Ken-Betwa Link Project (KBLP) held its third meeting recently. KBLP is an important project but… Continue reading What ails the Ken-Betwa River link project?

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Building resilience for the long game

Source– The post is based on the article “Building resilience for the long game” published in the Business Standard on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Indian economy and mobilisation of resources Relevance– Issues related to fiscal policy News-The article explains the economic scenario around the world and for India. It also provides some suggestions for… Continue reading Building resilience for the long game

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The new and dark interpretations of ‘We the People’

Source– The post is based on the article “The new and dark interpretations of ‘We the People’” published in The Hindu on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Polity Relevance– Working of institutions in Indian democracy News– The article explains the recent speech by the Vice-President about separation of powers. It tells about the features of… Continue reading The new and dark interpretations of ‘We the People’

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Developing schools without barriers

Source– The post is based on the article “Developing schools without barriers” published in The Hindu on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Vulnerable action of the population Relevance– Issue related to disabled children News– The article explains the challenges faced by disabled children. It also explains various national and international initiatives that provide educational access… Continue reading Developing schools without barriers

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Working hand in hand to showcase India

Source– The post is based on the article “Working hand in hand to showcase India” published in The Hindu on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Government policies and interventions Relevance– Tourism sector News– The article explains the steps taken by the Ministry of Tourism to promote coordination among various ministries. It also explains the draft… Continue reading Working hand in hand to showcase India

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Structural strength – The basic structure of the Constitution has authority

Source: The post is based on the article “Structural strength – The basic structure of the Constitution has authority” published in the Business Standard on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary. Relevance: About basic structure doctrine. News: The Vice President of India in 83rd All-India… Continue reading Structural strength – The basic structure of the Constitution has authority

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Ponder This On R-Day – How to make governors constructive constitutional functionaries as originally envisaged by the republic

Source: The post is based on the article “Ponder This On R-Day – How to make governors constructive constitutional functionaries as originally envisaged by the republic” published in The Times of India on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary. Relevance: About Friction between the state… Continue reading Ponder This On R-Day – How to make governors constructive constitutional functionaries as originally envisaged by the republic

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Joshimath On Sea? – Mega projects for Andaman and Nicobar need to be ultra-sensitive about ecology and tribes

Source: The post is based on the article “Joshimath On Sea? – Mega projects for Andaman and Nicobar need to be ultra-sensitive about ecology and tribes” published in The Times of India on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment. Relevance: About Great Nicobar Project. News: Nearly 100… Continue reading Joshimath On Sea? – Mega projects for Andaman and Nicobar need to be ultra-sensitive about ecology and tribes

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Uniform Civil Code: Can the debate be extricated from identity politics and refocused on gender equality?

Source: The post is based on the article “Uniform Civil Code: Can the debate be extricated from identity politics and refocused on gender equality?” published in the Indian Express on 25th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Indian Constitution—significant provisions and basic structure. Relevance: About Uniform Civil Code. News: Uniform Civil Code (UCC) in India can… Continue reading Uniform Civil Code: Can the debate be extricated from identity politics and refocused on gender equality?

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Why are corals in Thailand getting destroyed?

Source: The post is based on the article “Why are corals in Thailand getting destroyed?” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? Scientists found that corals of eastern Thailand are getting affected by Yellow band Disease which is killing corals over vast stretches of the sea floor. What is Yellow… Continue reading Why are corals in Thailand getting destroyed?

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Army looks to get hi-tech drones, robotic mules to replace animal transport

Source: The post is based on the article “Army looks to get hi-tech drones, robotic mules to replace animal transport” published in Indian Express on 24th January 2023. What is the News? Indian Army has floated three requests for proposals(RFPs) for procurement of 48 jetpack suits, 130 tethered drone systems and 100 robotic mules as… Continue reading Army looks to get hi-tech drones, robotic mules to replace animal transport

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IMF confirms India’s finance assurances for Sri Lanka

Source: The post is based on the article “IMF confirms India’s finance assurances for Sri Lanka” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? The International Monetary Fund(IMF) has confirmed receiving India’s written financing assurance in support of Sri Lanka’s economic revival. Why is Sri Lanka seeking IMF assistance? Sri Lanka… Continue reading IMF confirms India’s finance assurances for Sri Lanka

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Five billion people unprotected from trans fat leading to heart disease

Source: The post is based on the article “Five billion people unprotected from trans fat leading to heart disease” published in WHO on 23rd January 2023 What is the News? The World Health Organization(WHO) has released a report titled “Countdown to 2023 – WHO report on global trans fat elimination”. What are the key findings… Continue reading Five billion people unprotected from trans fat leading to heart disease

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Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome(PCOS) and its Complications

Source: The post is based on the article “Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome(PCOS) and its Complications” published in PIB on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? Indian Journal of Biochemistry and Biophysics(IJBB), one of the premier monthly journals from CSIR-National Institute of Science Communication and Policy Research (NIScPR) has brought out a special issue on the… Continue reading Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome(PCOS) and its Complications

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Switzerland is first WTO member to formally accept new Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies

Source: The post is based on the article “Switzerland is first WTO member to formally accept new Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies” published in WTO on 23rd January 2023 What is the News? Switzerland has become the first WTO member to formally submit its acceptance of the WTO’s new Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies. What is the… Continue reading Switzerland is first WTO member to formally accept new Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies

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What if risk of commercial release of GM Mustard is irreversible, Supreme Court asks government

Source: The post is based on the article “What if risk of commercial release of GM Mustard is irreversible, Supreme Court asks government” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023 What is the News? The Supreme Court has asked the Centre what will happen if the risk of commercial release of GM Mustard crop… Continue reading What if risk of commercial release of GM Mustard is irreversible, Supreme Court asks government

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Issues Related to Prisons and Prison Reforms – Explained, pointwise

For 7PM Editorial Archives click HERE → Introduction While addressing the Annual Police Meet, the Prime Minister called for Prison Reforms to improve jail management in India. Earlier, on the occasion of the Constitution Day (November 26, 2022), the President of India had expressed concerns over overcrowding of prisons. She had suggested decongesting of prisons and the need… Continue reading Issues Related to Prisons and Prison Reforms – Explained, pointwise

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[Download] 9 PM Weekly Compilation – January, 2023 – 2nd week

Hello everyone, We are posting a Compilation of the 9 PM current affairs brief for the 2nd week of the Month of January. Click on the following link to download Download About 9 PM Current Affairs Brief: The idea behind the 9 PM Daily Current Affairs Brief is to make aspirants aware of the important news from… Continue reading [Download] 9 PM Weekly Compilation – January, 2023 – 2nd week

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Must Read Current Affairs Articles – January 25th, 2023

About Must Read News Articles: Must Read News Articles is an initiative by Team ForumIAS to provide links to the most important news articles of the day. It covers The Hindu newspaper. This saves the time and effort of students in identifying useful and important articles. With newspaper websites requiring a paid subscription beyond a certain… Continue reading Must Read Current Affairs Articles – January 25th, 2023

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Needed, a new approach to data protection for minors

Source– The post is based on the article “Needed, a new approach to data protection for minors” published in The Hindu on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Awareness in the field of IT. GS2- Vulnerable sections of population Relevance– Children in the emerging digital ecosystem News– The article explains the child centric issues with the… Continue reading Needed, a new approach to data protection for minors

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Democracy and its structural slippages

Source– The post is based on the article “Democracy and its structural slippages” published in The Hindu on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Polity Relevance– Democracy in modern times News– The article explains the features of modern and concept of equality. It also explains whether elections are truly free and fair. What are some features… Continue reading Democracy and its structural slippages

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Rock The Jailhouse – Too many Indians are locked up under dozens of obsolete laws. Legal reform must precede prison reform

Source: The post is based on the article “Rock The Jailhouse – Too many Indians are locked up under dozens of obsolete laws. Legal reform must precede prison reform” published in The Times of India on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of vulnerable… Continue reading Rock The Jailhouse – Too many Indians are locked up under dozens of obsolete laws. Legal reform must precede prison reform

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New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern’s resignation spotlights the hard choices that women in politics often face

Source– The post is based on the article “New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern’s resignation spotlights the hard choices that women in politics often face” published in The Indian Express on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Polity Relevance– Women in politics News– The article explains the challenges faced by women in politics. What are the issues… Continue reading New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern’s resignation spotlights the hard choices that women in politics often face

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Finetuning the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code

Source: The post is based on the article “Finetuning the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code” published in The Indian Express on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Economic Development Relevance: proposals to make changes in IBC, 2016 News: The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), 2016 was brought with the aim to bring structural change in the resolution… Continue reading Finetuning the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code

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India needs to use its fiscal armoury to fight inequality

Source– The post is based on the article “India needs to use its fiscal armoury to fight inequality” published in the mint on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Issues relating to poverty. GS3- Inclusive growth Relevance– Inequality and related issues News– The article explains the recent report of Oxfam about increasing inequality in India. It… Continue reading India needs to use its fiscal armoury to fight inequality

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Open IIT Gates – More women are taking a crack at the JEE. Good, because this gender disparity was glaring

Source: The post is based on the article “Open IIT Gates – More women are taking a crack at the JEE. Good, because this gender disparity was glaring” published in The Times of India on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Issues relating to the development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Education. Relevance:… Continue reading Open IIT Gates – More women are taking a crack at the JEE. Good, because this gender disparity was glaring

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Kerala announces menstrual leave: Time to talk period

Source: The post is based on the article “Kerala announces menstrual leave: Time to talk period” published in The Indian Express on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Social Justice Relevance: menstrual leave for women and associated concerns News: Kerala government has announced that it will grant menstrual leave for female students in all state universities… Continue reading Kerala announces menstrual leave: Time to talk period

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Endorsement disclosure – Fine violators, do not jail them

Source: The post is based on the article “Endorsement disclosures – Fine violators, do not jail them” published in Business Standard on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation. Relevance: About guidelines for social-media influencers and celebrities. News:… Continue reading Endorsement disclosure – Fine violators, do not jail them

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An India chapter for foreign universities

Source: The post is based on the article “An India chapter for foreign universities” published in The Hindu on 24th January 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Issues relating to the development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Education. Relevance: About foreign universities in India. News: Recently University Grants Commission (UGC) announced draft regulations for foreign… Continue reading An India chapter for foreign universities

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Employment days under Mahatma Gandhi National Employment Guarantee Scheme at a five-year low

Source: The post is based on the article “Employment days under Mahatma Gandhi National Employment Guarantee Scheme at a five-year low” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? The average days of employment provided per household under the Mahatma Gandhi National Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) are at a five-year low… Continue reading Employment days under Mahatma Gandhi National Employment Guarantee Scheme at a five-year low

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Artificial skyglow: The dark sky is a natural resource, and too much light is polluting it

Source: The post is based on the article “The dark sky is a natural resource, and too much light is polluting it” published in The Hindu on 24th January 2023. What is the News? According to a study, light pollution is growing rapidly and in some places, the number of stars visible to the naked… Continue reading Artificial skyglow: The dark sky is a natural resource, and too much light is polluting it

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Explained: How nuclear-powered rockets can send missions to Mars in 45 days

Source: The post is based on the article “Explained: How nuclear-powered rockets can send missions to Mars in 45 days” published in TOI on 22nd January 2023. What is the News? Recently, as part of the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts(NIAC) program for 2023, NASA selected a bimodal nuclear propulsion concept for Phase I development which… Continue reading Explained: How nuclear-powered rockets can send missions to Mars in 45 days

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PM participates in ceremony to name 21 largest unnamed islands of Andaman & Nicobar Islands after 21 Param Vir Chakra awardees

Source: The post is based on the article “PM participates in ceremony to name 21 largest unnamed islands of Andaman & Nicobar Islands after 21 Param Vir Chakra awardees” published in PIB on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? The Prime Minister has named the 21 largest unnamed islands of the Andaman & Nicobar… Continue reading PM participates in ceremony to name 21 largest unnamed islands of Andaman & Nicobar Islands after 21 Param Vir Chakra awardees

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INS Vagir, fifth Scorpene submarine, commissioned

Source: The post is based on the article “INS Vagir, fifth Scorpene submarine, commissioned” published in The Hindu on 24th January 2023. What is the News? The fifth Scorpene class conventional submarine “INS Vagir” was commissioned into the Indian Navy. What is INS Vagir? INS Vagir is the fifth diesel-electric Kalvari-class submarine.  It is among… Continue reading INS Vagir, fifth Scorpene submarine, commissioned

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Netherlands sticks to plan to close Groningen gas field by October

Source: The post is based on the article “Netherlands sticks to plan to close Groningen gas field by October” published in Economic Times on 22nd January 2023. What is the News? The Netherlands has planned to shut down the Groningen gas field this year because of safety concerns. What is Groningen gas field? The Groningen… Continue reading Netherlands sticks to plan to close Groningen gas field by October

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India-Maldives Relationship – Explained, pointwise

For 7PM Editorial Archives click HERE → Introduction The External Affairs Minister of India recently visited Maldives. In a bid to strengthen the India-Maldives Relationship, the two countries signed pacts on several development projects. The EAM’s visit comes at a crucial time. Presidential elections are set to be held in Maldives in September 2023. The elections are important… Continue reading India-Maldives Relationship – Explained, pointwise

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Must Read Current Affairs Articles – January 24th, 2023

About Must Read News Articles: Must Read News Articles is an initiative by Team ForumIAS to provide links to the most important news articles of the day. It covers The Hindu newspaper. This saves the time and effort of students in identifying useful and important articles. With newspaper websites requiring a paid subscription beyond a certain… Continue reading Must Read Current Affairs Articles – January 24th, 2023

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IISc experts detect radio signal from atomic hydrogen in distant galaxy

Source: The post is based on the article “IISc experts detect radio signal from atomic hydrogen in distant galaxy” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? Astronomers from McGill University in Canada and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru have used data from the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope(GMRT)… Continue reading IISc experts detect radio signal from atomic hydrogen in distant galaxy

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It’s time for India’s universities to join the world

Source– The post is based on the article “It’s time for India’s universities to join the world” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Issues relating to development and management of education Relevance– Higher education News– The article explains the specifications of the higher education sector in India. It also suggests some… Continue reading It’s time for India’s universities to join the world

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Oxfam inequality report: Taxing the ‘obscenely’ wealthy may not be the right solution

Source– The post is based on the article “Oxfam inequality report: Taxing the ‘obscenely’ wealthy may not be the right solution” published in The Indian Express on 23rd January 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Indian economy and mobilisation of resources Relevance– Inequality and taxation structure of India News– The article explains the Oxfam “Survival of Richest report”… Continue reading Oxfam inequality report: Taxing the ‘obscenely’ wealthy may not be the right solution

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The gas paradox: Govt encouraging huge investment to push demand but imposing policies that deter domestic exploration and production

Source: The post is based on an article “The gas paradox: Govt encouraging huge investment to push demand but imposing policies that deter domestic exploration and production” published in Business Standard on 23rd January 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Economic Development Relevance: import dependency of India on oil and gas News: The article discusses the policies adopted… Continue reading The gas paradox: Govt encouraging huge investment to push demand but imposing policies that deter domestic exploration and production

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Aspirational Blocks Programme: Building blocks of Viksit Bharat

Source– The post is based on the article “Aspirational Blocks Programme: Building blocks of Viksit Bharat” published in The Indian Express on 23rd January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Government policies and interventions Relevance– Government schemes for development of backward areas. News– The article explains the recently launched Aspirational Block Programme. It also explains some successful outcomes… Continue reading Aspirational Blocks Programme: Building blocks of Viksit Bharat

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A reminder of the flaws in India’s urbanisation policies

Source– The post is based on the article “A reminder of the flaws in India’s urbanisation policies” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Urbanisation, their problems and their remedies Relevance– Issues related to urban finance and urban governance News– The article explains the scenario of urban finance in India. It provides… Continue reading A reminder of the flaws in India’s urbanisation policies

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State actors and information warfare – We should recognise that many can play the game of manipulation targeting the Indian information space

Source: The post is based on an article “State actors and information warfare – We should recognise that many can play the game of manipulation targeting the Indian information space” published in Business Standard on 23rd January 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Technology Relevance: misuse of the internet technology News: Countries these days use the internet… Continue reading State actors and information warfare – We should recognise that many can play the game of manipulation targeting the Indian information space

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‘Economy at risk from move to clean energy’

Source: The post is based on the article “Economy at risk from move to clean energy” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? According to a study published in the Global Environmental Change journal, India’s financial sector is highly exposed to the risks of the economy transitioning from being largely… Continue reading ‘Economy at risk from move to clean energy’

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What is a ‘pantranscriptome’?

Source: The post is based on the article “What is a ‘pantranscriptome’?” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023. What is the News? Researchers at UC Santa Cruz(UCSC) have now reported on what they suggest is the first-ever method for analyzing RNA sequencing data genome-wide using a “pantranscriptome”. What is Pantranscriptome? Pan-transcriptome is a… Continue reading What is a ‘pantranscriptome’?

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What is the Leopard 2 tank, and how could it help Ukraine against Russia?

Source: The post is based on the article “What is the Leopard 2 tank, and how could it help Ukraine against Russia?” published in Indian Express on 22nd January 2023. What is the News? Germany has not yet decided whether to allow its Leopard 2 tanks to be sent to Ukraine. What is Leopard 2?… Continue reading What is the Leopard 2 tank, and how could it help Ukraine against Russia?

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Year End Review- 2022 : Ministry of Road Transport and Highways

Source: The post is based on the article “Year End Review- 2022 : Ministry of Road Transport and Highways” published in PIB on 4th January 2023. What is the News? The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has launched several initiatives and schemes in 2022. What are the schemes and initiatives launched by the Ministry… Continue reading Year End Review- 2022 : Ministry of Road Transport and Highways

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Puri’s Jagannath Temple: Why non-Hindus and foreigners can’t enter here

Source: The post is based on the article “Puri’s Jagannath Temple: Why non-Hindus and foreigners can’t enter here” published in Indian Express on 22nd January 2023. What is the News? The Odisha Governor has backed the entry of foreign nationals inside the world-famous Jagannath Temple in Puri. What is Lord Jagannath Temple? Lord Jagannath Temple… Continue reading Puri’s Jagannath Temple: Why non-Hindus and foreigners can’t enter here

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Mahabali frog waiting for official recognition

Source: The post is based on the article “Mahabali frog waiting for official recognition” published in The Hindu on 23rd January 2023 What is the News? Mahabali Frog is waiting to be elevated as the State Frog of Kerala. What is the Mahabali Frog? Mahabali Frog (Nasikabatrachus sahyadrensis) also known as Purple Frog is one… Continue reading Mahabali frog waiting for official recognition

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