9 PM Daily Current Affairs Brief – January 25th, 2023
We have initiated some changes in the 9 PM Brief and other postings related to current affairs. What we sought to do:
- Ensure that all relevant facts, data, and arguments from today’s newspaper are readily available to you.
- 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:
- The Hindu
- Indian Express
- Business Standard
- Times of India
- Down To Earth
- We have also introduced the relevance part to every article. This ensures that you know why a particular article is important.
- Since these changes are new, so initially the number of articles might increase, but they’ll go down over time.
- 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.
Mains Oriented Articles
GS Paper 2
- Developing schools without barriers
- Working hand in hand to showcase India
- Conference of top cops, attended by PM Narendra Modi, must not ignore basic policing problems
- The new and dark interpretations of ‘We the People’
- Uniform Civil Code: Can the debate be extricated from identity politics and refocused on gender equality?
- Ponder This On R-Day – How to make governors constructive constitutional functionaries as originally envisaged by the republic
- Structural strength – The basic structure of the Constitution has authority
GS Paper 3
- Building resilience for the long game
- What ails the Ken-Betwa River link project?
- Joshimath On Sea? – Mega projects for Andaman and Nicobar need to be ultra-sensitive about ecology and tribes
Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)
- What if risk of commercial release of GM Mustard is irreversible, Supreme Court asks government
- Switzerland is first WTO member to formally accept new Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies
- Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome(PCOS) and its Complications
- Five billion people unprotected from trans fat leading to heart disease
- IMF confirms India’s finance assurances for Sri Lanka
- Army looks to get hi-tech drones, robotic mules to replace animal transport
- Why are corals in Thailand getting destroyed?
Mains Oriented Articles
GS Paper 2
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 to disabled children. It also suggests some solutions for providing more educational access to these children.
What are the challenges faced by children with disabilities?
A UNESCO 2019 report mentioned that children with disabilities comprise 1.7% of the total child population in India. They are faced with physical, institutional, socioeconomic and communication barriers from an early age.
As per the report, more than 70% of five-year-olds with disabilities in India have never attended any educational institution.
Several barriers impede the participation of CWD in accessing educational opportunities These are inaccessible school buses; inaccessible facilities in schools like drinking water facilities, canteens and toilets.
There is inappropriate infrastructure in classrooms like uncomfortable seating, slippery flooring and low illumination.
Misinformed attitudes and perceptions among parents, teachers, staff, and communities influences the child’s emotional development.
There is a lack of teaching and learning practices that integrate inclusive technologies and digital equipment to engage the child.
What are the constitutional provisions, government intervention and international instruments that promote education for disabled children?
Article 21A of the Constitution and the Right to Education Act, 2009 outline the fundamental right to education and the right to have free and compulsory education for children aged 6-14 years.
The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan has adopted a ‘zero rejection policy’. It emphasises that every child with special needs is provided quality education.
India has ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The government launched the Accessible India Campaign in 2015. An important pillar of this campaign is accessibility to the built environment.
What is the way forward to increase the educational opportunities for children with disabilities?
There is a need to develop inclusive and accessible schools. They will not challenge perceptions about children with disabilities and the associated discrimination. It will also help in actualising the zero-rejection policy in schools.
A multi-pronged participatory approach for providing an enabling environment for the empowerment of future citizens is needed. It will ensure that stakeholders in the school ecosystem collectively work towards promoting accessibility and inclusion in schools.
It includes awareness and sensitisation programmes for children, parents, and caregivers. Trainers are needed for upskilling of school faculty and special educators and providing access to updated teaching toolkits and materials.
It is required to provide technical training to local government departments; and a co-learning platform for knowledge-sharing between all.
Five principles of equitability, usability and durability, affordability, cultural adaptability, and aesthetic appeal are of special importance. It should be embedded from the planning to implementation to evaluation stages of providing infrastructure services in schools.
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 tourism policy 2022 and tourism potential of our country.
The Ministry of Tourism has declared “Visit India Year 2023” for promoting various tourism products and destinations to increase India’s share in the global tourism market.
How is the Ministry of tourism prompting coordination between different ministries to boost tourism in the country?
Over the last eight years, the Ministry of Tourism has prioritised the task of inter-ministerial cooperation and coordination. It is breaking down silos.
Today, the Ministry of Tourism coordinates its work effectively with over 20 central government Ministries in the promotion and the development of tourism in the country.
In October 2022, the Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Home Affairs organised the National Conference on Tourist Policy Aimed at working with the police and sensitising them on addressing the needs of foreign and domestic tourists.
In partnership with the Ministry of Education, the Tourism Ministry has begun establishing ‘Yuva Tourism’ clubs to nurture young ambassadors of Indian tourism.
The Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways is aiming to make India an attractive cruise tourism destination using state-of-the-art infrastructure.
In partnership with the Ministry of External Affairs, tourism officers have been placed in 20 Indian missions in countries that contribute to some of the highest foreign tourist arrivals in India. Their role includes facilitating and providing inputs for country-specific sensibilities and having them reflected in tourism products.
Steps are being taken in collaboration with the Ministry of Roadways and the Petroleum Ministry to ensure that highways and fuel stations have clean sanitation infrastructure.
The Ministry of Tourism is also funding several commercial flight routes in partnership with the Ministry of Civil Aviation to make them viable.
What are some facts about the new draft National Tourism Policy 2022?
It aims to formalise the work coordination through structures and institutions.
The policy has been formulated after situational analysis including the impact of COVID-19. It takes into account future projections for the tourism sector with a vision for India@100.
One of the ideas includes an institutional structure that can take concurrent and coordinated action across the Union, State and local government levels in partnership with industry.
What is the tourism potential of India?
Data show that domestic tourism has recovered to pre-pandemic levels. This is evident in a record 1.84 crore domestic tourists visiting Jammu and Kashmir in 2022. Similarly, foreign tourist arrivals are expected to reach pre-pandemic levels.
India has always been a popular destination for travellers exploring spiritual enlightenment and self-discovery.
For centuries many great foreign travellers have visited India and shared their experiences in the form of memoirs, travelogues, poetry and books. Some of them are Megasthenes, Hiuen-Tsang, Marco Polo.
India is the birthplace to four major world religions– Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism.
Source: The post is based on an article “Conference of top cops, attended by PM Narendra Modi, must not ignore basic policing problems” published in The Indian Express on 25th January 2023.
Syllabus: GS 2 – Governance
Relevance: concerns associated with the Indian police system
News: The Indian police system has lots of concerns but these concerns are not often discussed at the conference of the Directors General of Police of all the states and union territories held recently.
What are the concerns with the Indian police system?
The conference of the Directors General of Police of all the states and union territories is held every year but it ignores the problem present in the Indian policy at grass roots level.
For example, the average police station in India presents a dismal picture such as case property like motorcycles and cars littered all over the compound, no reception room, filthy lockup, etc.
The staff are overworked, fatigued, generally unresponsive, and with little resources.
According to the Status of Policing in India Report 2019, police in India work at 77 percent of their sanctioned strength and work for 14 hours a day on average.
There are 70 police stations which have no wireless, 214 police stations that have no telephone and 240 police stations that have no vehicles.
Police personnel usually get unsatisfactory housing facilities, their training is not as per the recent emerging threats.
Further, it is estimated that since Independence, 36,044 police personnel have died in the performance of their duties. This signifies that the police duties in India are tougher than in any other part of the world.
What measures are required to improve the functioning of Indian police?
First, the police station must be reinforced with upgradation of its infrastructure, better transport, communication and forensic facilities.
Second, the format of the annual conference of all DGPs should be changed. The conference should be divided into two parts, one dealing with intelligence matters and the other dealing with crime and law and order issues. It is necessary because crime is increasingly becoming more complex and requires specialized treatment.
Third, the concept of SMART police should be achieved in order bring the change in in the working of the police.
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 democracy in the US and Britain. It explains the conventions followed in democracy and onslaught on institutions by the current central government in India.
What were the viewpoints presented by the Vice President about separation of powers at 83rd All India conference of presiding officers’ in Jaipur?
‘We the People’ essentially gives primacy to elected members of Parliament and the State legislatures. Separation of powers enshrined in the Constitution gives this primacy.
It implies that the judiciary and the executive are inferior as they are appointed and not elected directly by the people.
What are arguments against President viewpoints?
The Constitution does not define ‘people’. Its concern is about citizens and not any group or a particular institution. They are all people of this land.
To identify representatives in the legislature to be the sole representatives of the people is not appropriate. The theory of a separation of powers is basic to any democratic society, more than the letter of the Constitution.
What are some features of democratic setup in the US and Britain?
In the United States, the President has the power to appoint judges. This should be endorsed by Congress. But the President is directly elected by the people and has prerogatives in several issues which do not apply to a parliamentary democracy. The Prime Minister does not have the powers of the U.S. President
In the case of the United Kingdom, it is run by time-honoured conventions and laws passed by the House of Commons. It does not have a written Constitution which gives judicial review. But strong conventions are in place in spite of the primacy of Parliament. Even in Parliament, the Speaker becomes a non-party man, choosing when to retire from office.
In India too, the first two Speakers and later Neelam Sanjiva Reddy resigned from the ruling party for impartial work. This convention is not followed now.
What are different viewpoints about conventions?
Democracies cannot be run only by the laws passed in representative Assemblies. They need conventions.
B.R. Ambedkar realised that conventions are suitable for Indian conditions. Unless conventions are solidified into constituent laws and bound by strong threads, institutions may even be destroyed. It will endanger the very purpose of a Constitution protecting the citizen.
How are the institutions in India being destroyed by centralising tendencies?
Today’s onslaught on the judiciary is aimed at a powerful constitutional authority which is refusing to deviate from its constitutional responsibilities. The basic structure of the Indian Constitution is to be protected by SC, in spite of any over-reach by the legislature.
Other institutions like the ECI, independent investigating agencies and the civil service and police have deviated from constitutional and other legal responsibilities.
There are examples of confrontation in current times between elected governments in States and the Governors. The Constitution does not intend Governors to be subordinates to the central government.
This goes against the very dignity of the people of a State as inferior to a higher power outside their State.
The centre is pushing for greater centralisation not only within constitutional institutions at the Centre. It is also in States which are ruled by parties other than the national ruling party.
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 be taken into consideration in India only after addressing a slew of concerns.
What is Uniform Civil Code (UCC)?
|Read here: Explained | The Uniform Civil Code|
What are the status and judicial views on implementing UCC in India?
|Must Read: The Debate on Uniform Civil Code – Explained, pointwise|
What is the view of the constituent Assembly on implementing UCC?
|Read here: A detached approach is crucial for a uniform civil code|
What are the two key challenges in implementing UCC?
Intricate issue of marriage: According to NFHS-5, 1.3% of Hindus, 1.9% of Muslims, and 1.6% of others still practising polygyny. This is due to divergent social and kinship rules among various regions.
For instance, northwest India forbid marriage (based on sapinda) between anyone related within five generations on the father’s side and three on the mother’s side. On the other hand, the south and northeast India allow uncle-niece and cross-cousin marriages among Hindus and Muslims allow marriage even between parallel cousins. Hence, this is hard to unify under one single code.
Intricate issue of inheritance: Hindus are governed by the 2005 Hindu Succession Amendment Act (HSAA); Muslims by the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937; Christians and Parsis by the Indian Succession Act 1925 (amended by both communities subsequently), and tribal groups are still subject to custom.
At least six major points of divergence in the above-mentioned laws make unification difficult, and possibly untenable. These are,
a) Hindu inheritance distinguishes between separate property and coparcenary joint family property, giving coparceners rights by birth. No other personal law makes this distinction.
b) Within Hindu law itself, states diverge. Kerala abolished joint family property altogether in 1976, but other states retained it, and matrilineal Hindus (as in Meghalaya and Kerala) have different inheritance rules from patrilineal Hindus.
c) The right to will is unrestricted among Hindus, Christians and Parsis, but Muslim law restricts wills to one-third of the property.
d) The inheritance laws of Hindus, Christians and Parsis are largely gender-equal today. But, under Muslim personal law, based on the Shariat, women’s shares are less than men’s generically.
e) Land (a key productive resource) is treated differently from other property in some personal laws but not others.
f) Social justifications on who deserves to inherit differ. Hindus emphasise sapinda (“shared body particles” in Mitakshara and religious efficacy in Dayabhaga); other communities privilege blood or marital ties.
What should be done to implement the UCC?
The government should refocus on gender equality, while also allowing democratic choice. This can be done by
-Discussions among women’s groups in the 1990s highlighted three positions.
1) Encourage each religious community to pursue its own reform for gender equality, 2) Constitute a package of gender-just laws which would coexist with personal laws, and a person could choose one or the other upon reaching adulthood, and 3) Constitute a gender-equal civil code applicable to all citizens without option based on the constitutional promise of gender equality.
–Cover inheritance and marriage issues separately: On inheritance, a secular law based on constitutional rights will ensure gender equality.
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 government and the governor.
News: Telangana this year will have two separate official R-Day events due to acrimony between the political executive and the governor. Friction between the state government and the governor is also happening in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Chhattisgarh.
The current phase of conflicts between governors and the political executive stems largely from stalling of bills.
What is the constitutional status of the governor?
The debate on primacy: The Constitution replaced the British Raj legislation where the governor functioned as an agent of the colonial power vested with greater authority than the elected council of ministers. However, the Constitution gave primacy to the legislative assembly and the political executive.
Appointment and dismissal: The constitutional bench in 1994 reiterated the primacy of the legislature and narrowed the ground for the dismissal of a government. The grey areas still allow a governor to make controversial calls on the appointment of chief ministers.
Powers with respect to Bills: Article 200 of the Constitution details the options of a governor when a bill is cleared by the assembly. However, it does not unambiguously lay down a deadline.
|Read more: Bad and ugly – A Governor’s departure from convention has set off unsavoury events|
What should be done to avoid friction between the state government and the governor?
-The Constitution is clear that the legislature has primacy, hence, governors should not use loopholes to stall the functions of the legislature.
-The Centre must put a deadline on how long a governor can stall a bill.
-Make governors accountable to not just the central executive via the President but also the Rajya Sabha and the state government.
|Read more: The Governor is under the Constitution, not above it|
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 Presiding Officer’s conference criticised the doctrine of the basic structure for undermining parliamentary sovereignty.
What are the major highlights of the Vice President’s address?
|Read here: Vice-President says court can’t dilute Parliament’s sovereignty|
What is the basic structure doctrine, and how was the doctrine developed?
|Read here: Basic structure Doctrine|
What are the concerns associated with the basic structure doctrine?
The apex court in Singapore, which too has a post-British legal system similar to India’s, deliberately did not adopt the basic-structure doctrine. The court also explained the reasons for not adopting the doctrine.
The court argued that the basic-structure doctrine emerged from the justifiable claim that Constitutions drafted by a Constituent Assembly held a different status in their relationship to the legislature from Constitutions drafted by a regular Parliament.
Why basic structure doctrine is not undermining parliamentary sovereignty?
|Must read: Bound supremacy – Parliamentary sovereignty isn’t undone by the basic structure doctrine|
Over the years, the basic structure of the Constitution had served as the “North Star” for legal interpreters of that document. Further, the basic-structure doctrine keeps the Indian state tethered constitutionally to the norms, ideas, and values of 1950.
GS Paper 3
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 the upcoming budget.
What is the expected economic scenario for FY2024 around the world and for India?
2023 is likely to be a year of global economic slowdown. The impact of synchronised and aggressive monetary policy tightening cycles will be felt.
Mild recession in both the US and Europe is expected.
This will affect India’s growth via weak exports and delayed private investment.
India’s real GDP growth can be below the estimated level.
Nominal GDP growth is likely to be slow due to moderation in commodity price. Tax buoyancy is highly sensitive to nominal GPP. It means that a moderation in tax buoyancy is expected in FY24.
What should be the focus of the coming budget?
The budget should focus on fiscal consolidation. The central government’s fiscal deficit of around 6.5 per cent of GDP.
Public infrastructure spending should be increased, but without compromising on consolidation.
It should be done by using money created by the reduction in food and fertiliser subsidy bills, and other revenue-raising mechanisms such as asset monetisation.
There is a need to rationalise personal income taxes so that more individuals opt for the new regime of lower taxes and fewer exemptions.
But a broader reduction in the effective tax rate will add to the government’s fiscal burden, without boosting consumption. A more targeted support for lower income households, may be more worthwhile.
From a medium-term perspective, it should aim for creating more jobs by boosting the manufacturing sector. There is a need to steer away from protectionist measures such as Custom duty hikes.
More focus on skill development to empower the youth, increased agriculture investments to boost farm productivity, and using digital infrastructure to find and connect new markets.
In the long term, there will be high energy demand. So, it is essential that this increased energy comes with minimum environmental impact.
India needs to be green first, rather than transition to green later. This requires investments in renewables, green technology and large-scale afforestation.
Agriculture and food security depend on access to a consistent supply of fresh water. Investments are required to ensure water availability across the country.
There is a need to create stronger counter-cyclical fiscal buffers. Setting aside a small percentage of revenues every year, will enable us to smooth out the fiscal deficit over the years.
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 it also has challenges associated with it.
What is the Ken-Betwa Link Project?
Read Here: What is the “Ken-Betwa Link Project”?
What are the concerns with the KBLP project?
The government’s plan is based on a ‘surplus and deficit’ model for the project and as per experts, this model has little scientific basis. They are also concerned that the project will endanger the water security of Panna.
Sections 29 and 35(6) of the Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972 restrict human activities within ‘sanctuaries’ and ‘national parks’ without prior approval and the project aims at going against the provisions.
Further, diversion or stopping or enhancement of the flow of water into or outside wildlife sanctuaries/parks is prohibited unless it is deemed to be necessary.
The Central Empowered Committee (CEC) of the Supreme Court has also found that such diversion is not necessary to improve and better manage wildlife in the park.
Moreover, downstream of the national park lies the Ken Gharial Sanctuary which was created to protect the critically endangered Gangetic gharial. Therefore, the proposed dam may also have an impact on the flow of water of the sanctuary.
Further, the project is still to receive full forest clearance, environment approval from the National Green Tribunal. Still, it got Cabinet approval and was announced for implementation in the 2022-23 Union budget.
What are the legal problems with the project?
As per CEC, approval given by the Standing Committee of the National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) to the KBLP has not been proved to be necessary for the improvement and better management of the wildlife.
Further, as per the experts, an independent hydrological study of river Ken is necessary and no developmental project should destroy the ecology of the fragile ecosystems and an important tiger habitat in the country.
How will the Panna tiger reserve be affected by the KBLP?
Panna tiger reserve lost all of its tigers by 2009 and it took lots of efforts and almost a decade to reintroduce them back. Panna has deep gorges which will be drowned if a new dam is built.
Further, the government has sought to develop a larger Panna Tiger Landscape to provide an alternative option. But this may not be the solution as landscape should be created in any case.
Moreover, such landscape-level action is also required around most wildlife areas in light of a new global target to protect 30% of global terrestrial and marine areas by 2030, finalized at the COP15 of the United Nations Biodiversity Conference 2022.
What can be the way ahead?
As per experts, it will be more economical and faster if the governments restored Bundelkhand’s lakes and ponds rather than building dam. The region already receives adequate annual rainfall.
Hence, KBLP has both technical and legal issues and it can also intensify water conflicts between Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
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 former civil servants represented themselves to the President against the development plans on Great Nicobar Island.
About the Great Nicobar Project
|Read here: Nicobar project gets assent for diversion of 130 sq km of forest|
What are the strategic and ecological significances of the Great Nicobar project?
|Read more: Strategic and ecological significance of the Great Nicobar project|
What are the concerns associated with the Great Nicobar project?
The project is likely catastrophic for the island’s sensitive ecology and indigenous hunter-gatherer tribes like the Shompen who are already listed as a ‘particularly vulnerable tribal group’.
The region has some of India’s largest mangroves and that over half the species of butterflies, 40% of birds and 60% of mammals are endemic to the region. All of this unique biodiversity could be lost forever.
What should be done?
Disregarding the ecological sensitivity of the region could see the making of another Joshimath-like catastrophe on a grander scale. Compensatory afforestation in Haryana or MP will not prevent such a catastrophe. Therefore, any future plans to develop the Andaman and Nicobar Islands need to seriously factor in the environmental impact on the region.
Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)
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 is “irreversible”.
What is GM Mustard?
Why has there been opposition to the commercial release of GM Mustard?
Firstly, widespread use of herbicide-tolerant crops such as GM Mustard would encourage farmers to spray chemical weed-killers leaving toxic chemical residue in large amounts on the crops.
Secondly, the Supreme Court’s own Technical Expert Committee (TEC) had said that these GM crops were not meant for agriculture in the Indian context. They may be suitable in the western context where there are large farms but not here.
Thirdly, the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee(GEAC) which cleared the environmental release of GM Mustard was “horrendous” and riddled with conflict of interest.
– For instance, the Department of Biotechnology had funded GM Mustard and then was part of the regulatory mechanism.
What were the government’s arguments in support of GM Mustard?
Firstly, GM mustard was not developed as herbicide-tolerant (HT). It is neither necessary nor desirable for a farmer to use herbicides in the cultivation of GM mustard. A crop is referred to as an HT variety if its commercial trait is HT.
– Moreover, the use of herbicides by farmers is not permitted in cultivating GM mustard and will attract punitive action under the Environment Protection Act and Central Insecticides Act.
Secondly, India imported and consumed oil derived from GM crops, and opposition to such technology based on unfounded fears was hurting farmers, consumers and industry.
Thirdly, GEAC approval to the GM Mustard came after an exhaustive review which began in 2010.
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 WTO Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies?
WTO Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies was adopted at the 12th Ministerial Conference(MC12) in 2022.
The agreement marks a major step forward for ocean sustainability by prohibiting harmful fisheries subsidies, which are a key factor in the widespread depletion of the world’s fish stocks.
It is the first WTO agreement to focus on the environment, the first broad, binding, multilateral agreement on ocean sustainability and only the second agreement reached at the WTO since its inception.
Acceptance of 2/3rd of WTO members is needed for the agreement to come into effect.
What are the key provisions of the agreement?
The Agreement prohibits subsidies to illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, and bans subsidies for fishing overfished stocks and for fishing on the unregulated high seas.
Developing Countries and Least Developed Countries(LDCs) have been allowed a transition period of two years from the date of entry into force of this Agreement.
The agreement recognizes the needs of developing and least-developed countries (LDCs) and establishes a Fund to provide technical assistance and capacity building to help them implement the Agreement.
Exemptions: No prohibition has been imposed on a WTO Member regarding granting or maintaining subsidy to its vessel or operator as long as it is not carrying out IUU.
– Similarly, no prohibition on providing subsidies has been imposed for fishing regarding overfished stocks as long as such subsidies are implemented to rebuild the stock to a biologically sustainable level.
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 theme, “Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and its Complications”.
What is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome(PCOS)?
Polycystic ovary syndrome(PCOS) is a multifactorial endocrine disorder which is characterized by chronic anovulation.
It is the most prevailing female endocrine disorder and the pre-eminent cause of infertility, with a worldwide range of 6-26% and in India, it is 3.7-22.5%.
Risk factors that contribute to the development of PCOS include genetics, neuroendocrine system, sedentary lifestyle, diet, and obesity.
What happens in PCOS?
In PCOS, small millimetre-sized cysts form on the ovaries which lead to an increase in the size of the ovaries (normal ovarian size is the size of an almond). The size may be increased to almost double their size.
Due to this increase in size, the ovaries start releasing abnormal hormones. instead of normal female hormones, the ovaries start producing male hormones, especially testosterone which is responsible for the effects seen in PCOS.
These abnormal male hormones released by the affected ovaries lead to hair growth on the face, acne, loss of hair on the scalp, abnormal menstrual cycles and may even lead to the inability to conceive.
What is the treatment for PCOS?
PCOS is a hormonal condition which has no cure, but can only be brought under control.
There are synthetic drugs such as metformin and oral contraceptive pills available for treatment, but their side effects cause concern.
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 of the WHO report on global trans fat elimination?
WHO had called in 2018 for harmful trans fatty acids to be eliminated by 2023. They are thought to be responsible for around 500,000 premature deaths from coronary heart disease each year.
Since then, 43 countries have implemented best-practice policies for tackling trans fat, with some 2.8 million people now protected, a nearly six-fold increase.However, the elimination goal currently remains unattainable.
Currently, 9 of the 16 countries with the highest estimated proportion of coronary heart disease deaths caused by trans-fat intake do not have a best-practice policy. Some of these countries are Australia, Bhutan, Egypt, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Nepal, and Pakistan among others.
What are the best practices to eliminate trans-fat?
Best practices in trans-fat elimination policies follow specific criteria established by WHO and limit industrially produced trans-fat in all settings. There are two best-practice policy alternatives:
– mandatory national limit of 2 grams of industrially produced trans-fat per 100 grams of total fat in all foods and
– mandatory national ban on the production or use of partially hydrogenated oils as an ingredient in all foods.
What are the recommendations given by the WHO report on global trans fat elimination?
WHO recommends that countries focus on adopting the best-practice policy, in addition to monitoring and surveillance, healthy oil replacements and advocacy.
In meanwhile, food manufacturers should be encouraged to eliminate industrially produced trans fat from their products.
What is Trans Fat?
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 is grappling with challenges during the past year ranging from a shortage of foreign currency to runaway inflation and a steep recession – the worst such crisis since its independence from Britain in 1948.
Due to this, Sri Lanka has decided to seek IMF assistance and reached a staff-level agreement in September 2022.
India, China and Japan are Sri Lanka’s three largest bilateral creditors — to send written financing assurances to the IMF strongly supporting Sri Lanka’s debt restructuring plan.
As part of the plan, none of the official lenders would take a haircut while giving Sri Lanka time to recover with an IMF programme.
However, private creditors, who hold the largest chunk of Sri Lanka’s foreign debt, may have to take a haircut.
Note: According to World Bank estimates, Sri Lanka has an external debt burden of more than $52bn as of December. Of that, nearly 40% is owed to private creditors, including financial institutions, while the rest is owed to bilateral creditors where China (52%), Japan (19%) and India (12%) are the largest ones.
What is Haircut?
When a bank takes a ‘haircut’, it means it accepts less than what was due in a particular loan account. For example: if a bank was owed Rs 10,000 by a borrower, and it agrees to take back only Rs 8,000, it takes a 20% haircut. Banks do this for accounts where chances of making a full recovery are bleak.
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 part of its modernisation drive.
What are Tethered drones?
A tethered drone is an unmanned aerial vehicle tethered to the ground. It consists of a base station on the ground and the drone, which is connected to the station through the tether (cable).
The tethered drone can be operated remotely to perform specific tasks. It can be used for surveillance of targets beyond the line of sight for a prolonged period.
They can also be launched in an untethered mode for a certain duration to confirm inputs.
Benefits of Tethered Drones: Tethered drones are perfect for data capture and telemetry due to the reliability of tethered connections.
Tethered drones dramatically reduce technical and human error crashes in flight.
A tethered drone has a reduced spatial area where it can fly. Because of the flying restrictions the tether creates and their greater control, their operation does not require a trained pilot.
It also does not require GPS navigation, which is a significant contributor to reducing any technical errors that lead to drones crashing.
What are Robotic Mules?
Indian Army is planning to procure Robotic Mules that should be capable of autonomous movement across various terrain, apart from having self-recovery and obstruction avoidance features.
What are Jetpack suits?
A Jetpack is a device worn on the back which uses jets of gas or liquid to propel the wearer through the air.
The Indian Army said it wants to procure jetpack suits that can lift a person safely across deserts, mountains and high-altitude areas at a height of 3,000 m.
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 band Disease?
Yellow-band disease is named for the colour it turns corals before destroying them.
It was first spotted decades ago and has caused widespread damage to reefs in the Caribbean.
There is no cure for the disease. The disease’s impact cannot be reversed, unlike the effects of coral bleaching. This means that when the coral is infected with this disease, it just dies.
Scientists believe overfishing, pollution and rising water temperatures because of climate change may be making the reefs more vulnerable to yellow-band disease.
Source– The post is based on the article “India must reduce its public debt ratio to build economic resilience” published in the mint on 8th February 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Government budgeting Relevance– Issues related to public debt and government borrowing News– The new budget has a credible plan to reduce the fiscal deficit as a… Continue reading India must reduce its public debt ratio to build economic resilience
Source: This post is created based on the article “U.S. shot down a Chinese ‘spy’ balloon”, published in The Hindu on 8th Feb 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3 – Science and Technology – Defence Technologies Read more- Advantages of Spy balloons over spy satellites On Jan 28, defence and military officials confirmed that a… Continue reading U.S. shot down a Chinese ‘spy’ balloon
Source: This post is created based on the article “Cities would literally be much cooler with more trees around”, published in Live Mint on 8th Feb 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 1 – Urbanisation and associated issues Context: 2022 was Europe’s hottest summer on record. However, this summer could be even worse with the return… Continue reading Cities would literally be much cooler with more trees around
Source: This post is created based on the article “Boosting pharma research”, published in Business Standard on 8th Feb 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3 – Industries and industrial policies News: Government is going to introduce research-linked incentive (RLI) scheme for pharmaceutical sector, just like PLI scheme for other sectors. Not much is clear about… Continue reading Boosting pharma research
Source– The post is based on the article “In light of the Russia-Ukraine war, an opportunity to modernise India’s defence industry” published in The Indian Express on 8th February 2023. Syllabus: GS2- International Relations Relevance– Changing geopolitics and defence ecosystem News– New global defence engagements are emerging with the Ukraine war. It opens the possibility… Continue reading In light of the Russia-Ukraine war, an opportunity to modernise India’s defence industry
Source– The post is based on the article “Neglecting the health sector has consequences” published in The Hindu on 8th February 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Issues relating to development and management of health and education Relevance– Social sector News– The allocations in the Budget for health, education and nutrition has remained stagnant. What is the importance… Continue reading Neglecting the health sector has consequences
Source– The post is based on the article “Private sector has not responded to government initiatives so far” published in The Indian Express on 8th February 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Indian economy Relevance– Changing structure of economy News– Despite record profits of the larger firms and the increase in capital spending by the public sector, a… Continue reading Private sector has not responded to government initiatives so far
Source: The post is based on the article “Yuva Sangam registration portal launched” published in PIB on 7th February 2023. What is the News? The Union Minister of Education has launched the “Yuva Sangam” portal. What is Yuva Sangam? It is an initiative of the Prime Minister of India. Aim: To build close ties between… Continue reading Yuva Sangam registration portal launched
Source: The post is based on the article “No Bar of Res-judicata on Second Petition for Divorce If It Is Founded on New Facts: Madras HC” published in News18 on 7th February 2023. What is the News? Madras High Court has recently dismissed a civil revision petition filed by a woman against an order of… Continue reading No Bar of Res-judicata on Second Petition for Divorce If It Is Founded on New Facts: Madras HC
Source: The post is based on the article “Stone-age carvings found in Aravalis in Gurugram” published in TOI on 7th February 2023. What is the News? Various Paleolithic paintings found in the Aravalli hills and the latest discovery of stone carvings in the Badshahpur area of Gurugram has widened the trove of history in the… Continue reading Stone-age carvings found in Aravalis in Gurugram
NCAER Report on Farm Machinery Industry in India presented to MoS (Agriculture) Ms. Shobha Karandlaje
Source: The post is based on the article “NCAER Report on Farm Machinery Industry in India presented to MoS (Agriculture) Ms. Shobha Karandlaje” published in PIB on 7th February 2023. What is the News? National Council of Applied Economic Research(NCAER) has released a report titled “Making India a Global Power House on Farm Machinery Industry”.… Continue reading NCAER Report on Farm Machinery Industry in India presented to MoS (Agriculture) Ms. Shobha Karandlaje
Source: The post is based on the article “Row over Nagaland DGP: How are state police chiefs appointed?” published in Indian Express on 7th February 2023. What is the News? The Nagaland government has issued an order appointing Rupin Sharma as Director General of the state police. The order was passed after Nagaland challenged the… Continue reading Row over Nagaland DGP: How are state police chiefs appointed?
Department of Animal Husbandry implements various schemes to promote and develop animal husbandry and dairying sector across the country
Source: The post is based on the article “Department of Animal Husbandry implements various schemes to promote and develop animal husbandry and dairying sector across the country” published in PIB on 7th February 2023. What is the News? The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying is implementing various schemes to supplement the efforts of States/UTs… Continue reading Department of Animal Husbandry implements various schemes to promote and develop animal husbandry and dairying sector across the country
Source: The post is based on the article “Dhamaal: The incredible story of how East African culture shaped the music of a state in India” published in Down To Earth on 7th February 2023. What is the News? The story of Dhamaal performance traditions by Siddis reveals the rich and complex mixing of cultures in… Continue reading Dhamaal: The incredible story of how East African culture shaped the music of a state in India
Source: The post is based on the article “Why railways around the world are ditching diesel for hydrogen” published in TOI on 7th February 2023. What is the News? Indian Railways has planned to operate 35 hydrogen-powered trains on various heritage and hilly routes in India under its ‘Hydrogen for Heritage’ Project. What is Hydrogen… Continue reading Why railways around the world are ditching diesel for hydrogen
Source: The post is based on the article “CAR T-cell therapy: the next step towards a holistic treatment of cancer” published in Indian Express on 7th February 2023. What is the News? The three major forms of treatment for any cancer are surgery (removing the cancer), radiotherapy (delivering ionising radiation to the tumour), and systemic… Continue reading CAR T-cell therapy: the next step towards a holistic treatment of cancer
Source: The post is based on the article “What has the Union Budget allocated to minorities?” published in The Hindu on 8th February 2023. What is the News? The Union Budget for 2023-24 came with a reduction of 38% in funds for the Ministry of Minority Affairs. Which schemes might be impacted due to the… Continue reading What has the Union Budget allocated to minorities?
Source: The post is based on the article “Signs of a weakening public sector” published in the Business Standard on 8th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Government Budgeting. Relevance: About fiscal relations between the Centre and states and PSUs. News: The Budget reveals the nature of the Centre’s financial engagement with public sector undertakings… Continue reading Signs of a weakening public sector
Make In IndAIa – As Google comes up with a ChatGPT rival & AI becomes ubiquitous, here’s what GoI must do
Source: The post is based on the article “Make In IndAIa – As Google comes up with a ChatGPT rival & AI becomes ubiquitous, here’s what GoI must do” published in The Times of India on 8th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Awareness in the fields of IT. Relevance: About AI research. News: Recently,… Continue reading Make In IndAIa – As Google comes up with a ChatGPT rival & AI becomes ubiquitous, here’s what GoI must do
Source: The post is based on the article “A quick reset – India and Canada are looking at the big picture as they put behind discord” published in The Hindu on 8th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests. Relevance: About bilateral ties… Continue reading A quick reset – India and Canada are looking at the big picture as they put behind discord
For 7PM Editorial Archives click HERE → Introduction The Joshimath crisis in Uttarakhand has led to large scale displacement of the local population. The Government has halted all construction activity in the region. The reason for the crisis is being attributed to development projects being undertaken in the region. This has brought attention to the large-scale hydroelectric projects… Continue reading Hydroelectric Projects in India: Status, Benefits and Concerns – Explained, pointwise
[UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #39 : Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla Board, PSIR Optional, Tamil Nadu Home State
Board: Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla (Retd.) Optional: PSIR Background: Civil Engg Home State: Tamil Nadu 4th interview No questions from the hobbies/interests To view all IAS Interview Transcripts 2022, visit this page Chairman Which place are you from? Why psir after graduation in engg? Have you gained interest in IR? There’s a diplomat called George Schultz.… Continue reading [UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #39 : Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla Board, PSIR Optional, Tamil Nadu Home State
[UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #38 : RN Choubey Board, Geography Optional, watching Japanese anime, Running Hobbies
Date of Interview: 3rd Feb afternoon 5th to go Board: RN Choubey Background: Physics, Optional: Geography Hobbies: watching Japanese anime, Running Sports: chess, and hockey Extremely cordial board (well what can you expect from Choubey sir’s board) JUST RANDOM THINGS, JUST 2-3 QUESTIONS FROM DAF CANT SAY HOW TO JUDGE Wished everyone – Good afternoon… Continue reading [UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #38 : RN Choubey Board, Geography Optional, watching Japanese anime, Running Hobbies
[UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #37 : RN Choubey Board, Philosophy Optional, Bihar Home State, Vipassna, Guitar Hobbies
Date of Interview: 2nd Feb Afternoon Board: RN Choubey Background: BSc Physics Optional: Philosophy Home State: Bihar 3rd attempt , 1st Interview Hobbies: Vipassna, Guitar, reading self-improvement books Extremely cordial board … First minute was briefing and then given choice to remove the mask To view all IAS Interview Transcripts 2022, visit this page Chairman… Continue reading [UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #37 : RN Choubey Board, Philosophy Optional, Bihar Home State, Vipassna, Guitar Hobbies
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 – February 8th, 2023
Source– The post is based on the article “Jammu, village defence and governance” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Security Relevance– Security situation in Jammu and Kashmir News– There is a rise in terror-related strikes in the relatively peaceful Jammu division, especially in the border districts. Recently, the government decided to… Continue reading Jammu, village defence and governance
Source– The post is based on the article “The freedom of speech and an ‘adolescent India’” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Significant provisions of constitution Relevance– Right to freedom in India News– The article explains the notions of freedom of speech in India and the west. It also explains the… Continue reading The freedom of speech and an ‘adolescent India’
Source– The post is based on the article “CEO NITI Aayog Param Iyer on Budget 2023-24: An infrastructure push for the people” published in The Indian Express on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS2-Budgeting Relevance: Infrastructure creation News- The article explains how Budget 2023 gives a powerful thrust to infrastructure development . What are the announcements… Continue reading CEO NITI Aayog Param Iyer on Budget 2023-24: An infrastructure push for the people
Source– The post is based on the article “Budget 2023-24 ignores rural distress, tries to fix demand problem with supply interventions” published in The Indian Express on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Budgeting Relevance:Rural development News- The article emphasises the need to prioritise allocations towards reviving consumption demand and spurring private investment . What are… Continue reading Budget 2023-24 ignores rural distress, tries to fix demand problem with supply interventions
Instead of criminalising child marriage, Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma should heed PM Modi’s call of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao
Source: The post is based on the article “Instead of criminalising child marriage, Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma should heed PM Modi’s call of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” published in The Indian Express on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Social Justice Relevance: evolution of laws on child marriages in India News: The Assam government has… Continue reading Instead of criminalising child marriage, Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma should heed PM Modi’s call of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao
Source: The post is based on the article “What will drive global growth?” published in Business Standard on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Growth and Development Relevance: factors responsible for growth in A-10 economies News: The demographic shift in 10 major Asian economies (the A-10: China, India, Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Korea, Malaysia,… Continue reading What will drive global growth?
Source: This post is created based on the article “How are earthquakes measured and how massive is the Turkey one?”, published in Indian Express on 7th Feb, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3, Disaster management News: Recently, an earthquake of magnitude 7.8 struck south-central Turkey and Northwest Syria. Reports have put the number of fatalities… Continue reading How are earthquakes measured and how massive is the Turkey one?
Source: This post is created based on the article “Ballooning Options To Spy”, published in Times of India on 7th Feb, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3, Science and technology, News: The Chinese airship that was shot down over US soil brought to light new spying technologies, some of which India should work on. Advantages… Continue reading Ballooning Options To Spy
[UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #36 : RN Choubey Board, Agriculture Optional, Tamil Nadu Home State, Hydroponics Hobby
Date of Interview: 03rd Feb Board: RN Choubey Home State: Tamil Nadu Work: Indian Forest Sevice Hobby: Hydroponics Optional: Agriculture To view all IAS Interview Transcripts 2022, visit this page Chairman Tell us about your Work experience. You are already in a good service, why you wanted to appear in the⁸ exam again ? Your… Continue reading [UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #36 : RN Choubey Board, Agriculture Optional, Tamil Nadu Home State, Hydroponics Hobby
Source: The post is based on the article “Jupiter Now Has The Biggest Family Of Planets With 12 Newly Discovered Moons” published in Indian Express on 7th February 2023. What is the News? Jupiter isn’t just the largest and most massive planet in the solar system. It now also has the largest number of moons… Continue reading Jupiter Now Has The Biggest Family Of Planets With 12 Newly Discovered Moons
Source: The post is based on the article “India, Canada FMs discuss Indo-Pacific cooperation, trade” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. What is the News? India’s External Affairs Minister met the Canadian Foreign Minister. They discussed ways to deepen their bilateral partnership and exchanged views on the global situation, particularly in the Indo-Pacific… Continue reading India, Canada FMs discuss Indo-Pacific cooperation, trade
Source: The post is based on the article “Why the MCD House elections have been stalled for the third time” published in Indian Express on 7th February 2023. What is the News? The Presiding Officer for the mayoral election in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has said that aldermen — who are nominated members… Continue reading Why the MCD House elections have been stalled for the third time
Source: The post is based on the article “ST commission functioning with less than 50% of its approved strength” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. What is the News? Data presented by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs(MoTA) has revealed that the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes(NCST) is currently functioning with less than 50%… Continue reading ST commission functioning with less than 50% of its approved strength
Source: The post is based on the article “India joins UAE, France for trilateral on clean energy, counter-pandemic steps” published in The Hindu on 6th February 2023. What is the News? India, France and the United Arab Emirates(UAE) have announced the creation of a formal trilateral cooperation initiative. The idea of this partnership was first… Continue reading India joins UAE, France for trilateral on clean energy, counter-pandemic steps
Source: The post is based on the article “India to send disaster relief teams to quake-hit Turkey” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. What is the News? The Prime Minister has declared that India will provide all possible assistance to Turkey to deal with the devastating earthquake that hit the country India will send… Continue reading India to send disaster relief teams to quake-hit Turkey
Source: The post is based on the article “UNESCO to soon declare Visva-Bharati world’s first living heritage university” published in Indian Express on 7th February 2023. What is the News? Visva-Bharati University will soon get the ‘heritage’ tag from UNESCO to take the distinction of world’s first living heritage university. What is Visva-Bharati University? Visva-Bharati… Continue reading UNESCO to soon declare Visva-Bharati world’s first living heritage university
Source: The post is based on the article “Prime Minister launches E20 Fuel & flags off Green Mobility Rally in Bengaluru” published in PIB on 6th February 2023. What is the News? Prime Minister inaugurated India Energy Week (IEW) 2023 in Bengaluru. He launched multiple initiatives in the field of green energy including E20 fuel… Continue reading Prime Minister launches E20 Fuel & flags off Green Mobility Rally in Bengaluru
Source: The post is based on the article “Voice deepfakes: how they are generated, used, misused and differentiated” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. What is the News? Several users of the social media platform 4chan used “speech synthesis” and “voice cloning” service provider, ElevenLabs, to make Voice Deepfakes of celebrities like Emma… Continue reading Voice deepfakes: how they are generated, used, misused and differentiated
For 7PM Editorial Archives click HERE → Introduction The window for climate action is shortening rapidly. IPCC Sixth Assessment Report had pointed out that Earth will warm up by 1.5°C (above pre-Industrial level) over the next couple of decades. According to NASA, the planet’s average temperature was 1.02°C warmer in 2020 than the mean temperature between 1950-80. If… Continue reading Energy Transition: Challenges and Solutions – Explained, pointwise
Source: The post is based on the article “End-of-life decisions – SC’s tweaks on directive norms are welcome, but legislation will be better” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health. Relevance: About advance medical directives. News: In a… Continue reading End-of-life decisions – SC’s tweaks on directive norms are welcome, but legislation will be better
Source: The post is based on the article “The demand for MGNREGS work is unmet” published in The Hindu on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes. Relevance: About the demand for MGNREGS. News: The allocation… Continue reading The demand for MGNREGS work is unmet
Municipal Mess – From MCD to BMC, paralysis of urban local bodies undermines local governance and democracy
Source: The post is based on the article “Municipal Mess – From MCD to BMC, paralysis of urban local bodies undermines local governance and democracy” published in The Times of India on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein. Relevance: About MCD mayor… Continue reading Municipal Mess – From MCD to BMC, paralysis of urban local bodies undermines local governance and democracy
Source: The post is based on the article “India Inc must help enhance the role of women in nation building” published in Live Mint on 7th February 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Inclusive growth and issues arising from it.. Relevance: About women-centric development. News: A paradigm shift is observed in reorienting India’s direction of economic… Continue reading Women-centric development – India Inc must help enhance the role of women in nation building
[UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #35 : Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla Board, History Optional, Hosting quizzes, pencil sketching Hobbies
Date of Interview: 01/02/23 Afternoon Board: Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla (Retd.) Optional: History Background: IIT Madras Hobbies: Hosting quizzes, pencil sketching Your experience in Interview: No pleasantries to make the interviewee comfortable. Expressionless faces. Slight smiles at times. Entire board was attentive to the answers. Overall good experience. Utility of mocks or O2O (if any)-… Continue reading [UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #35 : Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla Board, History Optional, Hosting quizzes, pencil sketching Hobbies
[UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #34 : Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla Board, Chemistry Optional, leadership Hobby
Date of Interview: 2nd Feb forenoon (4th to go) Board: Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla (Retd.) Background: dual degree (Btech + Mtech) in civil engineering from an old IIT Optional: Chemistry Hobbies: leadership, etc – no Qs asked DAF keywords: patent granted in treatment of water using solar energy and a medical device presented in the festival… Continue reading [UPSC Interview 2022] – Transcript #34 : Lt. Gen. Raj Shukla Board, Chemistry Optional, leadership Hobby