9 PM Daily Current Affairs Brief – March 23rd, 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 1
GS Paper 2
- R&D: India’s missing giants
- The happiest countries also rank among the highest in antidepressant consumption
- The road to ending tuberculosis
- Why Univ Rankings Are In Trouble From India To US
- Abolition is the way: On the higher judiciary’s move on the death penalty
- As Covid and H3N2 flu cases rise, here’s how India can help build global resilience
GS Paper 3
- Privatized Air India’s takeoff can lead other PSUs to thrive as well
- The old pension scheme as a burden on the poor
- What is the IPCC synthesis report and what does it say?
- Tremors From Himalayas – Chardham Project work in high-risk seismic zones can put tremendous pressure on a super-sensitive ecological area
Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)
- The High Seas Treaty: Key provisions, and the challenges it faces
- House panel suggests prepaid cards for power to save groundwater
- India aims at becoming ‘Global Hub for Green Ship’ building by 2030 with launch of Green Tug Transition Programme(GTTP): Union Minister
- Number of foreign businesses exiting India surpass new entrants
- What is deadly Candida auris and what are the symptoms?
- Indian Army to reintroduce millets in rations of soldiers
- Getting it right: a historian’s effort to document the life of Bhagat Singh
- No more rights to foreign carriers in India. Why?
- What is the Call Before u Dig application launched by PM?
Mains Oriented Articles
GS Paper 1
Source: The post is based on thearticle “Notes on urban prosperity” published in Business Standardon 23rdMarch 2023.
Syllabus: GS 1 –Urbanization
Relevance: problems with Urbanization
News:The article discusses the problems with urbanization and measures that can be adopted to make urban cities prosper.
What are the problems with urbanisation?
Cities have become an important point of change, growth and provide creative solutions to national agendas as well as regional and global development.
However, long-term sustainable urban prosperity has been reduced by insufficient planning, absence of effective governance and legal frameworks, unstable institutions, and the absence of a credible monitoring system.
Hence, the economic benefits of a city such as rise in the price of land and assets cannot be utilized well until the gains of urbanisation and value generated are not redistributed among citizens equitably.
According to the UN-Habitat’s World Cities Report (Envisaging the Future of Cities), a vision of fair “urban futures” cannot be realized unless we adopt inclusive and decisive efforts toward sustainable solutions to urban difficulties.
Must Read: India@100: What’s ahead for urbanisation?
What measures can be adopted to bring urban prosperity?
Cities’developments are mostly looked at in terms of GDP. However, its measure must be directed towards making urban environments more resilient so that urban prosperity comes in line with sustainable goals.
Some of the efforts taken in this direction are – the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
Further, creating urban resilience is a multi-faceted, multi-stakeholder process that requires more intensive actions.
Therefore, to realize the positive vision of urban futures, ambition must be shifted from gradual urban transitions to large urban changes along with bridging the gap between ambitious city visions and action plans to achieve the goals.
However, it is also necessary to recognize, measure, and operationalize urban resilience gaps and policies for proper administration. These need to be addressed by the various local government units.
For measuring such parameters, the City Resilience Index (CRI) might be useful. It was created with the intention that all member cities will adopt and use it as a tool to track changes in overall resilience over time.
Further, in order to create a climate-resilient world, urban economic activity should be made in such a way that it promotes renewable energy, circular economic activity, and green employment.
The various forms of capital (natural, sociocultural, human, economic, and physical) should be handled through systemic thinking that promotes fairness, justice, co-production, governance, and regeneration.
What can be the way ahead?
Rapid urbanization has resulted in the growth of outer urban areas in the shape of megacities, hyper cities, that are inefficient in terms of energy usage, environmental sustainability, and economic performance.
Therefore, there is a need for a more comprehensive approachwhich addresses – a)the pillars of sustainable development by emphasizing the economic role of cities in national growth and recognizing the economic possibilities they provide and b)global environmental challenges like climate change, unsustainable energy consumption, and water scarcity to ensure ease of living for its people.
GS Paper 2
Source- The post is based on the article “R&D: India’s missing giants” published in the “Business Standard” on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS2- Government policies and interventions for development
Relevance– Innovation for growth of economy
News– The article explains the lack of R&D expenditure in India. It explains the need for global brands in India and creating a world-competitive industry to build these brands.
What are issues with R&D expenditure in India?
India lags the world in R&D. It is the fifth largest economy, but ranks 16th in investment on R&D.
Large firms worldwide dominate investment in technology. The top 20 investors in industrial R&D account for over 20% of the total industrial R&D done by millions of firms worldwide. But, the 26th largest investor in industrial R&D worldwide invests more in R&D than all of Indian industry combined.
Top five firms in the non-financial sector have low R&D investment in India. While the top five firms in the US spend 152 billion dollars on R&D, in China 31 billion dollars, but in India they spend only 0.9 billion dollars.
R&D investment as a percent of profit is much more interesting. It is 37% in the US, 29% in China, 43% in Japan, and 55% in Germany. In India, it is 2%.
What are the benefits of developing global brands by India firms?
It is argued that large groups in India have failed in building a single global brand. It is blamed on a mentality of outsourcing. The international firms like Apple, Microsoft, Sony, BMW are globally associated with great products in particular industries.
The brands they have built provide global reach and a premium positioning that delivers great profitability.
How the firms in East Asian economies became global brands?
Firms like Samsung, Hyundai, LG, TSMC and Acer did not start as global brands. They began with outsourcing, as original equipment manufacturers or OEMs. They build manufacturing operations of global scale.
They used their demanding buyers as a source of technology that made them world-competitive. They invested in R&D, as process innovation, to make manufacturing more efficient. They then offered their buyers products with new and improved designs.
With world-competitive manufacturing and product design in place, they made the shift to their own brand manufacturing. They launched their own brands.
This is the story of Samsung in microwaves and semiconductors, LG in TV sets, Hyundai in cars and excavators, TSMC in microprocessors, and Acer in laptops.
As firms like Hyundai, Samsung moved up the OEM to OBM chain, their investment in R&D multiplied. Samsung has consistently ranked among the world’s five largest investors in R&D. It invests $18 billion a year, more than all of India
What is the way forward to build global brands in India?
It requires a long-term entrepreneurial outlook with investment in technology. There is a need for building a world-competitive industry.
Outsourcing should not be discouraged. The current protection though PLI subsidies must continue. At the same time, there is a need to invest strongly in design.
A few giant investors in R&D must emerge in India. The most profitable firms in software, in consumer goods and industrial products are suitable for it. If they are not willing, new entrants to build world-leading firmsbased on investments in technology must be prompted.
Source- The post is based on the article “The happiest countries also rank among the highest in antidepressant consumption” published in “The Indian Express” on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS2- Issues related to development and management of human resources.
Relevance– Important reports and indices
News– World Happiness Report 2023 published by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions released recently.
What are some facts about the World Happiness Report 2023?
Denmark is at number two and Iceland in the third spot. Sweden and Norway, are at six and seven, respectively.
The ranking uses six key factors to measure happiness — social support, income, health, freedom, generosity, and absence of corruption.
What are issues related to the happiness report?
As per the data released by the OECD, the use of antidepressants increased nearly two and half times across Europe between 2000 and 2020. Iceland is at the top spot, followed immediately by Sweden and Norway. Finland and Denmark come in at number eight and nine.
The measures used to map happiness often don’taccount for things such as loneliness in highly developed societies. Material well-being does not preclude conditions like clinical depression.
These reports rank each nation for the efforts taken by their government for happiness among its citizens. Happiness itself is too ineffable, individual and elusive. It cannot be properly assessed by rankings and measurements.
Source- The post is based on the article “The road to ending tuberculosis” published in “The Hindu” on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS2- Issue related to development and management of health
Relevance– Communicable diseases, their treatment and management
News– The article deals with important areas of action to end TB by 2030. It also explains the global response to stop TB incidence.
What are global efforts taken to reduce the incidence of TB?
In 1993, the World Health Organization declared TB a global health emergency.
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria began disbursing money directed toward the global TB epidemic in 2003. But conditions are imposed on it by its donor constituents. There are conflicts among stakeholders regarding the amount of money allocated for three diseases.
TheStopTB Partnershipmobilises a disparate set of actors towards the goal of ending TB.
How has the global TB response been adapting to changes?
There is engagement of people affected by the disease.
There is use of molecular diagnostic tools developed for diagnosing TB.
Social safety programmes to address the poverty drivers of the TB epidemic have been introduced.
Mobile and computational data revolution is being leveraged to improve treatment outcomes
What are the three areas that are important to achieve the goal of ending TB by 2030?
The First area is vaccine development.
There is a need for the development and wide use of an adult TB vaccine. The current vaccine delivered at birth is 100 years old.
The experience with the COVID19 vaccine development process can be used. The issue of equitable distribution seen with the COVID19 vaccines should be avoided.
The second area is that of getting newer therapeutic agents for TB.
After a development drought of nearly five decades, a few new anti-TB drugs are today available for widespread use.
Moving to an injection free and shorter all oral pills regimen for TB will improve compliance and reduce patient fatigue.
The effort to come up with newer drugs needs to accelerate so that drug resistance to the most recently introduced drugs can be tackled.
The third area of action is diagnostics.
Use of AI-assisted handheld radiology with 90 second reporting and 95% plus accuracy for diagnosing TB is important development. It should be rolled out universallyimmediately.
Sentinel, passive surveillance and interpretation of cough sounds for TB is another breakthrough area. This allows for homelevel screening and monitoring. It should be used widely.
Confirmatory diagnosis using nucleic acid amplification can be explored. InDx diagnostics coalition and other biotech startups should be incentivised to break the complexity of molecular testing and price barriers with affordable high quality innovations.
Source: This post is created based on the article “Why Univ Rankings Are in Trouble from India To US”, published in Times of India on 23rdMarch 2023.
Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 2 – Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Education
News: Many foreign universities recently rejected the US News & World Report annual rankings. Many top universities were included among them, for example the top ranked Harvard Medical School, law schools of UC Berkeley and Yale.
Their justification was that these rankings were harmful to attracting prospective students.
Similarly, in 1995, Reed College refused to participate in the US News & World Report annual survey. The reason was a WSJ report of1994 about institutions manipulating data to move up in the rankings in various popular college guides.
However, the executive chair of US News & World Report, said that the mentioned elite schools don’t want to be held accountable by an independent third party.
Recently India’s National Assessment and Accreditation Council’s processes have come in for a lot of criticism and several articles have red-flagged its credibility.
What are the issues with the measurement of performance of Universities?
There are issues with both qualitative and quantitative measurements of universities. A qualitative approach is time-consuming and cannot be verified. Moreover, it islabor-intensive, and not statistically representative. Whereas the qualitative measurement relies on numbers and can be manipulated by institutes.
Another issue is whether a university should be programme accredited or institution accredited. programme accreditation can be enormously time-consuming for our large education system, whereas university accreditation can hide the inconsistencies within departments.
How do the ranking agencies operate presently?
There are many ranking agencies operating presently, for example, THE World University Rankings (THE-WUR), QS Asian University Rankings, Quacquarelli Symonds World University Rankings, etc.
THE-WUR measures the university performance based on 13 indicators, across teaching (30%), research (30%), research citation (30%) international outlook (7. 5%) and knowledge transfer/industry income (2. 5%).
QS measures based on academic reputation (40%), employer reputation (10%), faculty student ratio (20%), citation per faculty (20%) and international faculty and student ratio (5% each).
NAAC measure is based on 15% for curricular aspects, 20% for teaching learning and evaluation, 25% for research, innovation and extension and 10% each for 4 other aspects.
NIRF ranking is based on six parameters such as research and professional practice, graduation outcomes, outreach and inclusivity.
Why is there so much difference in methods of ranking universities?
Education is multi-faceted. There is a large diversity in the Indian education system.
Different type of institutions like pvt or public, tech or social science, language basedetc, operate under very different conditions. They cannot be grouped under the same parameters for a quality check.
Therefore, ranking and accreditation processes must be scraped and quality assurance must be adopted as the default. Individual Universities must be held accountable for the performance.
Source: The post is based on the article “Abolition is the way: On the higher judiciary’s move on the death penalty” published in The Hindu on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS – 2: mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of vulnerable sections.
Relevance: About death sentences.
News: The Supreme Court has asked the Centre to provide data which may point to less painful, more dignified and socially acceptable methods to carry out death sentences other than death by hanging.
What was the case about and What is the Centre’s stand on death by hanging?
|Read here: SC Bench seeks data on alternatives to hanging|
What are the observations of the SC on death sentences?
Bachan Singh vs State of Punjab (1980) case: The court upheld the death penalty, but limited it to the ‘rarest of rare cases’,
Deena Dayal vs Union of India And Others (1983) case: The court upheld the executing method by ruling that hanging is “as painless as possible” and “causes no greater pain than any other known method”.
Evolved clemency jurisprudence: This makes decisions on mercy petitions justiciable and penalises undue delay in disposing of mercy pleas by commuting death sentences to life.
What are the recommendations of the Law Commission on death sentences?
The 35th Report of the Law Commission (1967) noted electrocution, use of a gas chamber and lethal injection can be considered as less painful. However, the commission was not in a position to come to a conclusion. So, it refrained from recommending any change.
What should be done on the question of death sentences?
Humanise the approach further: Instead of debating the manner of execution, a wider debate on abolishing the death penalty should be carried out. This is because any form of execution is a fall from humaneness, offends human dignity and perpetrates cruelty.
If eliminating cruelty and indignity is the aim, abolition of death sentences is the answer.
Source: The post is based on the article “As Covid and H3N2 flu cases rise, here’s how India can help build global resilience” published in the Indian Express on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS – 2: Issues relating to the development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health.
Relevance: About pandemic treaty.
News: The recent rise in Covid-19 cases and ongoing influenza outbreaks have highlighted the need for a pandemic treaty.
About health risks at present
About the current landscape of Covid-19: XBB.1.5 has been reported from 38 countries and declared a variant of interest (VOI) by the WHO.
The Covid XBB 1.16 variant is fuelling the surge. India witnessed nearly a three-fold rise in cases over the last fortnight. So far, it has not caused any mortality in India. XXBB 1.16 is nearly one-and-a-half times of XBB.1.5. Thus making it an aggressive variant with immune escape properties.
The surge of H3N2 Influenza A cases:
|Read here: H3N2: What is this virus and how can it be prevented from spreading|
What is the need for the pandemic treaty?
Limitations of the International Health Regulations (IHR) 2005: Limitations like countries not reporting cases in time and international agencies not responding adequately was exposed during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Emergence and re-emergence of diseases: Emergence and re-emergence of diseases of animal origin highlighted the need for local, national and global governance to combat diseases.
|Read more: Need for a Global Pandemic Treaty – Explained, pointwise|
About the debate for a pandemic treaty
World Health Assembly set off a global process in 2021. An intergovernmental negotiating body (INB) that includes WHO’s 194 countries is steering this process.
At the same time, more than 300 amendments to the IHR is also being discussed. The World Health Assembly in 2024 is expected to ratify these and set a “comprehensive, complementary and synergistic set of global health agreements”.
What is the pandemic treaty?
|Read here: WHO publishes zero-draft of pandemic treaty: Equity, IPR take centre stage|
How India can help in developing global health resilience?
Being the president of the G20 group of countries India has a significant role in developing global health resilience. India is working on One Health Mission. The G20 is already engaged with One Health (OH) issues.
What should be done to ensure an equitable pandemic treaty?
Appropriate use, recognition, and protection of indigenous knowledge: This will traditionally recognise the interconnectedness of human, non-human and ecosystem health.
Work on the inclusion of women and minority groups: The world should stress on substantive and equitable inclusion of women and minority groups, including racial, ethnic and sexual minorities. This is because of the traditionally under-represented groups in treaty design and implementation.
Use of health equity impact and gender-based analysis: This is to identify and develop mitigation plans for the potentially inequitable impact of epidemics.
What India should do to ensure health resilience?
Promote the establishment of OH infrastructure: This will need an integrated OH surveillance system, building and nurturing partnerships to connect and share data on infectious pathogens and related risk factors.
Work on pandemic preparedness: This includes integrating monitoring and assessment into the state and district governance architecture. As this will ensure an inter-/ transdisciplinary OH evaluation framework and methodology, including metrics for measuring success.
GS Paper 3
Source: The post is based on the article “Privatized Air India’s takeoff can lead other PSUs to thrive as well”published in Minton 23rdMarch 2023.
Syllabus: GS 3 –Economy – Mobilisation of Resources
Relevance: Privatization of the PSUs
News: Air India was completely privatized in January 2022. The airline has recently placed the biggest order of aircraft in India’s aviation history. The article discusses how privatization can benefit and improve the functioning of PSUs.
About the Privatization of Air India
What are the benefits of privatizing Air India?
Air India after its privatization had ordered 470 new aircraft. This would create around 70,000 direct jobs and thousands of indirect jobs.
It will also benefit air travellers to get newer routes, have cheaper fares and better overall service.
Looking at the orders of Air India, other competitor airline might also order more than 1,000 aircraftsoon. This will ultimately benefit the economy.
This shows that privatization has benefited the airlines in all aspects and hence, other PSUs should also be privatized on the same lines.
What steps can be taken by the government to privatize other PSUs?
Privatization has not been an easy or popular decision. Governments try to play safe due to public sentiment. Therefore, an alternative route can be taken.
The government should shift from privatization towards corporatization, i.e., there should be a shift from a 100% sale of government assets towards strategic disinvestments.
This corporatization can be done by listing the shares of the PSUs in the stock market.
This would providea good price for shares, protect the government against short-term price swings as well as increase the time period of volatility in the equity market.
The shares of PSUs should be distributed to the general public, with no individualor entity able to possess more than a 10% ownership. This approach of corporatization may be more transparent and practical to execute.
As soon as the government’s share in a PSU falls below 50%, it becomes a private corporation with an independent board and professional management and free of the 4Cs—CAG, CVC, CBI, and Courts.
The government can then continue to sell the remaining of its ownership at a premium until it has totally vacated the firm once it has been privatized.
For employees of those PSUs, a stock option offers with a promise from the management of not being laid off can be made.
This method of corporatization would benefit both the government as well as employees of the PSUs. Some of the examples of companies that were privatized in this way are British Airways, ICICI Bank, etc.
What can be the way ahead?
The government can start considering the corporatizing of those PSUs first in which it has low shares such as Concor (54.8%), Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (53%), Indian Oil Corp Ltd (51.5%), and BEML (54%).
The government should consider corporatizing its PSUs since there is strong investor demand for Indian assets, both international and local, institutional and retail.
This would help the government to earn good revenues, which it can invest in infrastructure and the social sector.
Source- The post is based on the article “The old pension scheme as a burden on the poor” published in “The Hindu” on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS3- Economy
Relevance– Issues related to public finances
News– The employees of some state governments are demanding the return to OPS. Some states like Rajasthan and Himachal have introduced OPS.
What are the challenges related to the introduction of OPS?
Economic status of government employees– The Sixth Pay Commission had substantially increasedthe basic salary of government employees to cover pension contributions. The basic monthly salary of a Class 4 employee as per seventh pay norm is ₹25,000.
The World Inequality Report 2022 estimated the average monthly income of the bottom 50% of the population to be ₹4,468, whereas it is ₹14,669.7 for the middle 40%. The salary of a government employee is higher than the income of more than 90% of the population.
Thus, the OPS acts as a regressive redistribution mechanism that favours better off classes.
Rising pension liabilities– The pension liabilities of the government increased due to a substantial hike under the Sixth pay matrix to pay for OPS for existing employees. As a result, pension liabilities substantially increased to 9% of total States expenditure. They are expected to increase in the future.
The pension liabilities of States account for 1.2% of GDP as on 2021-22. From 2004 to 2019, the pension expenditure of States registered an average annual growth of 16%.The aggregate receipts of State governments had an average growth of a mere 13.41%.
Assuming this rate constant, the share of pension expenditure will account for 14.7% of total State expenditures by 2040, and 19.4% by 2050.
Burden on the poor– Many State governments have yet to implement the Seventh pay norms, whereas some States have reportedly not paid arrears of the Sixth pay. Governments at the State level do not have fiscal autonomy.
Currently, the bottom 50% of the population bears the burden of indirect taxation six times more than their income. Due to the OPS, the bottom of the pyramid population has to bear the burden of OPS expenditure. It will push them into destitution and abject poverty.
OPS will create expenditure challenges for providing public goods. It will deprive a large population of basic necessities.
What is the way forward for resolving the pension issues of government employees?
Opposition to the OPS should not be a weapon for downsizing the government. It should be used to argue for a more equitable distribution of resources and universal provisions of public goods.
A participatory pension for government employees will provide a more egalitarian outcome. To protect employees from the vagaries of the market, the government can tweak the NPS to provide a guaranteed monthly return.
Administrative reforms are required to address unequal pay among various ranks of employees.
Government employees as a group have a voice and easy access to decision making. They can demandrationalisation of political executives’ pensions and profligacy.
They can also exert influence to introduce progressive taxation for the top 10% to address poverty and growing inequality.
Source: The post is based on the article “What is the IPCC synthesis report and what does it say?” and “Final solution – Concerted effort alone can save earth from worst of climate change effects” published in The Hindu on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS – 3: Environment and Bio-diversity Conservation.
Relevance: About IPCC Synthesis Report for the Sixth Assessment Cycle.
News: Recently, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its Synthesis Report for the Sixth Assessment Cycle.
What is a Synthesis Report?
The Synthesis Report is a compilation of the main findings of the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report, based on results from three Working Groups (WGs). WG I evaluated the physical science basis of climate change; WG II evaluated the impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability, and WG III evaluated the mitigation.
|Must read: Synthesis Report: IPCC meet in Switzerland: The significance, likely impact|
About the key findings and suggestions of the IPCC Synthesis Report for the Sixth Assessment Cycle
-Climate justice is crucial because those who have contributed least to climate change are being disproportionately affected.
-The planet’s best chance to keep temperatures below 1.5°C is to ensure greenhouse gas emissions are reduced to 48% of 2019 levels by 2030 and 99% by 2050.
-Paris Agreement targets cannot be met without negative emissions, or carbon dioxide removal and would entail untested technologies that now appear to be impractically expensive
|Must read: IPCC Synthesis Report of the Sixth Assessment Cycle (AR6) – Explained, pointwise|
What suggestions are given by the IPCC Synthesis Report for the Sixth Assessment Cycle?
Focus on climate resilient development: This not only mitigate the effects of climate change but also provide wider benefits.
Tremors From Himalayas – Chardham Project work in high-risk seismic zones can put tremendous pressure on a super-sensitive ecological area
Source: The post is based on the article “Tremors From Himalayas – Chardham Project work in high-risk seismic zones can put tremendous pressure on a super-sensitive ecological area” published in The Times of India on 23rd March 2023.
Syllabus: GS – 3: Disaster Management.
Relevance: About widening roads in Char dham.
News: Recently, the National Capital Region felt long-lasting tremors. This is a cause of worry as much of the North is categorised under various risk-prone seismic zones.
Why North India is more vulnerable to earthquakes?
North India lies in a major geological faultline, the Main Central Thrust Line. This is formed when the Indian (tectonic) plate is pushed under the Eurasian plate. This is categorised under the highest seismic zones 4 and 5.
About the Chardham Project work in high-risk seismic zone
Bhagirathi ecosensitive zone is a 100-km stretch of valley and sheer cliff through which Ganga flows from Gaumukh glacier. The government is starting work on widening the road to 12m width as part of its Chardham Pariyojana (CDP).
The SC bench led by Justice Nariman formed a high-powered committee (HPC) to ensure the project conformed to the Himalayan terrain. The committee recommended a narrower “intermediate width”.
Accordingly, the ministry of road transport and highways (MoRTH) had amended the width reducing it to “intermediate width”. But later, the CDP was changed into a defence project. Thus nullifying the committee recommendations. This wider road requires a ‘right of way’ double that of an intermediate width.
|Read more: SC approves widening of three Char Dham highways|
What are the concerns in widening roads in Char dham?
Neglected HPC recommendations: HPC members were unanimous that “road widening activities should only be undertaken after… environment impact assessment and mitigation measures” are done. Further, it recommended, the “felling of deodar trees should be avoided”.
But 8,000 deodars have been demarcated for felling in Bhagirathi zone alone.
Increased landslide: An unprecedented number of 200+ landslides have been reported on the CDP route since hill-cutting began.
Not followed other protocols: The environment ministry’s latest guidelines for highways in border areas mandate slope assessment, which has not been done. Even if it is done, the report is not in the public domain yet.
|Read more: Explained: What’s in Uttarakhand’s Char Dham Act, and why it is being withdrawn|
What should be done?
Follow checks and balances: Violation of checks and balances has resulted in the flooding of Kedarnath, Asi Ganga flooding of 2012, the Rishiganga floods of 2021, the Joshimath subsidence and other disasters. So, the government should strictly follow the conditions.
Follow farsighted approach: Building infrastructure in the Himalayas needs a carefully considered, farsighted, cautious and gentle approach.
Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)
Source: The post is based on the article “The High Seas Treaty: Key provisions, and the challenges it faces” published in Indian Express on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
The UN (United Nations) members agreed on a High Seas Treaty to ensure the protection and sustainable use of marine biodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction.
What are High Seas?
According to the 1958 Geneva Convention on the High Seas, parts of the sea that are not included in the territorial waters or the internal waters of a country are known as the high seas According to the 1958 Geneva Convention on the High Seas.
Simply put, it is the area beyond a country’s Exclusive Economic Zone which extends up to 200 nautical miles (370 km) from the coastline and till where a nation has jurisdiction over living and non-living resources.
No country is responsible for the management and protection of resources on the high seas.
What is the significance of High Seas?
The high seas account for more than 60% of the world’s ocean area and cover about half of the Earth’s surface, which makes them a hub of marine life.
They are home to around 2.7 lakh known species, many of which are yet to be discovered.
They regulate the climate by playing a fundamental role in planetary stability by mitigating the effects of climate change through its absorption of carbon and by storing solar radiation and distributing heat around the globe.
What are the key provisions of the High Seas Treaty?
The High Seas Treaty has four main provisions:
Marine-Protected Areas(MPAs): MPAs are where ocean systems, including biodiversity, are under stress, either due to human activities or climate change.These can be called the national parks or wildlife reserves of the oceans.
– Activities in these areas will be highly regulated, and conservation efforts similar to what happens in forest or wildlife zones, will be undertaken. Only about 1.44% of high seas are currently protected, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
– In 2022, at the meeting of the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) in Montreal, Canada, countries had agreed to put at least 30% of degraded coastal and marine ecosystems under effective restoration by 2030. MPAs can become an important vehicle to achieve that goal.
Marine Genetic Resources: Oceans host very diverse life forms, many of which can be useful for human beings in areas like drug development. Genetic information from these organisms is already being extracted, and their benefits are being investigated.
– The treaty seeks to ensure that any benefits arising out of such efforts, including monetary gains, are free from strong intellectual property rights controls, and are equitably shared amongst all.
Environment Impact Assessment: Under the provisions of the new treaty, commercial or other activities that can have significant impact on the marine ecosystem, or can cause large-scale pollution in the oceans, would require an environmental impact assessment to be done, and the results of this exercise have to be shared with the international community.
Capacity building and Technology Transfer: The treaty lays a lot of emphasis on this, mainly because a large number of countries, especially small island states and landlocked nations, do not have the resources or the expertise to meaningfully participate in the conservation efforts, or to take benefits from the useful exploitation of marine resources.
Source: The post is based on the article “House panel suggests prepaid cards for power to save groundwater” published in The Hindu on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Water Resources has tabled the report, titled “Groundwater: A Valuable but Diminishing Resource”.
What are the key observations made by the report?
About 14% of India’s 7,089 groundwater assessment units across states and Union Territories have been categorized as over-exploited, while another 4% fall in the critical category.
In about 11 states including Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat, the percentage share of groundwater extraction for irrigation ranged between 80% and 90%, with some states like Punjab extracting 97% of their groundwater for irrigation.
The main reason for such over-exploitation of groundwater in agriculture was due to the cultivation of paddy and sugarcane crops which are heavily incentivised by way of highly subsidized water, power and fertilizers.
Challenges: Central Government Ministries have expressed an inability to persuade states to reduce/stop subsidies for power given in agriculture as 1) electricity is a concurrent subject and 2) State Electricity Regulatory Commissions(SERCs) determine the electricity tariff for the retail supply of electricity to end consumers under the extant provisions of Electricity Act, 2003.
What are the recommendations given by the report?
The use of electric pumps needs to be discouraged by introducing measures such as pre-paid cards for power supply and restricting power supply to a few hours a day.
There is a need for a shift in focus from ‘land productivity’ to ‘water productivity’ i.e. production per cubic meter of water should be a major criteria in decisions relating to crop production.
Manual monitoring of groundwater level four times a year and collecting water quality samples once a year to obtain background information of quality change regionally.
Government should give the National Water Mission (NWM) the financial powers and autonomy needed to fulfil its objectives as it is still not well-equipped with adequate funds and autonomy.
India aims at becoming ‘Global Hub for Green Ship’ building by 2030 with launch of Green Tug Transition Programme(GTTP): Union Minister
Source: The post is based on the article “India aims at becoming ‘Global Hub for Green Ship’ building by 2030 with launch of Green Tug Transition Programme(GTTP): Union Minister” published in PIB on 22nd March 2023
What is the News?
Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways (MoPSW) has said India aims at becoming ‘Global Hub for Green Ship’ building by 2030 with the launch of the Green Tug Transition Programme(GTTP).
The minister also inaugurated India’s first National Centre of Excellence in Green Port & Shipping (NCoEGPS) in Gurugram,Haryana.
What is the Green Tug Transition Programme(GTTP)?
Aim: To convert all tugboats working in the country into ‘Green Hybrid Tugs’, running on non-fossil fuel like Methanol, Ammonia, and Hydrogen.
Note: Tugs are special boats that assist other vessels into and out of port. The primary purpose of these boats is to help move larger ships by towing, pushing, and guiding.
Target: The Ministry of Ports has set a target for the initial Green Tugs to start working in all Major Ports by 2025.
The programme will start with ‘Green Hybrid Tugs’, which will be powered by Green Hybrid Propulsion systems and subsequently adopt non-fossil fuel solutions (like Methanol, Ammonia, and Hydrogen).
At least 50% of all the Tugs are likely to be converted into Green Tugs by 2030, which will considerably reduce emissions as the country moves towards achieving sustainable development.
What is the National Centre of Excellence in Green Port & Shipping (NCoEGPS)?
Located at: Gurugram, Haryana
Setup by: NCoEGPS is the result of a collaboration between the Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways, the Government of India and the Energy and Resources Institute (TERI).
Purpose: The centre will engage in developing the regulatory framework and alternative technology adoption roadmap for green shipping in India.
– It will act as a technological arm of MoPSW for providing the needed support on Policy, Research and Cooperation in Green Shipping areas.
Significance: The Centre is aimed at playing a crucial role towards the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 14) to sustainably manage and protect marine & coastal ecosystems from pollution, conservation & sustainable use of ocean-based resources.
Source: The post is based on the article “Number of foreign businesses exiting India surpass new entrant” published in The Hindu on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
Over the past few years, foreign businesses exiting India have outnumbered those entering it.
What does the government data say about foreign firms in India?
The number of foreign companies quitting India has exceeded the number of new entrants since 2018.
For instance, 470 new foreign investors set up business in India between 2018 and 2022. But on the other hand, more than 550 overseas firms ceased operations and became inactive in the same period.
2019 was the only year when the number of foreign firms that started India operations (137) outnumbered the 133 firms that shut and became inactive.
This rise in exits of companies could largely be attributed to the slump that followed the Covid-19 pandemic’s sweep through the country, forcing a nationwide lockdown in 2020. Crippled finances, a shortage of labour, and supply-chain issues, among other problems, forced many of these entities to wrap up their operations.
Source: The post is based on the article “What is deadly Candida auris and what are the symptoms?” published in TOI on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have warned about an “emerging fungus” — Candida auris — in the US, adding that it poses a “serious global health threat“.
What is Candida Auris?
Who is vulnerable to Candida Auris?
Candida Auris is not a threat to healthy people. People who are very sick, have invasive medical devices or have long or frequent stays in healthcare facilities are at increased risk for acquiring C. auris.
C.auris spreads easily in healthcare facilities and can cause severe infections with high death rates.
Is it similar to candida infection, a common yeast infection?
Common candidiasis causes white discharge, which is easily treatable with antifungals. On the other hand, C. auris presents a completely different picture.Its symptoms may not be noticeable because patients with C. auris infection are often those who are already sick and are in the hospital with another serious illness.
Despite the growing concern, fungal infections tend to receive very little attention and resources, leading to a scarcity of quality data on fungal disease distribution and antifungal resistance patterns.
WHO further states that the exact burden of fungal diseases and antifungal resistance become unknown and therefore “the response is undermined”.
Should India be worried about Candida Auris?
India need not be concerned. It doesn’t spread through aerosols normally, so cannot become an epidemic.
Source: The post is based on the article “Indian Army to reintroduce millets in rations of soldiers” published in The Hindu on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
The Indian Army has decided to reintroduce millet flour in the rations of soldiers.
Why has the Indian Army decided to introduce millet in the rations of soldiers?
The Indian Army has decided to introduce millets in rations to promote the consumption of grains in the backdrop of the United Nations General Assembly declaring 2023 as the International Year of Millets.
This landmark decision will ensure troops are supplied with native and traditional grains after over half a century when these were discontinued (in 1966) in favour of wheat flour.
Three popular varieties of millets flour — bajra, jowar and ragi — will be issued to troops, duly considering their preference.
The grains will be procured and issued to the troops based on options they exercise and the quantity they demand.
What are the other steps being taken by the Army to promote millets?
Army has issued advisories across commands to ensure that millets are used extensively in organized functions, such as in Barakhanas, as well as in canteens.
The Army is also conducting centralized training of chefs to prepare delicacies made with millets.
‘Know your Millet’ awareness campaigns are also being conducted in educational institutions.
Source: The post is based on the article “Getting it right: a historian’s effort to document the life of Bhagat Singh” published in The Hindu on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
Prime Minister has paid tributes to freedom fighters Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, and Rajguru on Martyrs’ Day (Shaheed Diwas)
What is Shaheed Diwas?
Shaheed Diwas also known as Martyrs’ Day is observed on March 23rd in India to honor and pay tribute to the three Indian freedom fighters who sacrificed their lives for the country’s independence from British rule.
The three freedom fighters who are remembered on this day are Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev Thapar, and Shivaram Rajguru who were executed by the British government in 1931 in Lahore (now in Pakistan).
These three brave souls were hanged to death by the British government on March 23, 1931 in Lahore (now in Pakistan) for their involvement in the assassination of British police officer John Saunders.
Who was Bhagat Singh?
Bhagat Singh was born in 1907 in Lyallpur district (now in Pakistan), Bhagat Singh grew up in a Sikh family deeply involved in political activities.
He belonged to a generation that was to intervene between two decisive phases of the Indian national movement – the phase of the ‘Extremism’ of Lal-Bal-Pal and the Gandhian phase of nonviolent mass action.
CGetting it right: a historian’s effort to document the life of Bhagat Singhbution:
In 1924 in Kanpur, he became a member of the Hindustan Republican Association, started by Sachindranath Sanyal a year earlier. The main organizer of the Association was Chandra Shekhar Azad and Bhagat Singh became very close to him.
In 1928, HRA was renamed from Hindustan Republican Association to Hindustan Socialist Republic Association (HSRA).
In 1925, Bhagat Singh returned to Lahore and within the next year, he and his colleagues started a militant youth organization called the Naujawan Bharat Sabha.
In April 1926, Bhagat Singh established contact with Sohan Singh Josh and through him the ‘Workers and Peasants Party’ which brought out the monthly magazine Kirti in Punjabi. For the next year, Bhagat Singh worked with Josh and joined the editorial board of Kirti.
In 1927, he was first arrested on charges of association with the Kakori Case, accused for an article written under the pseudonym Vidrohi (Rebel).
To take revenge for the death of Lala Lajpat Rai, Bhagat Singh and his associates plotted the assassination of James A. Scott, the Superintendent of Police. However, the revolutionaries mistakenly killed J.P. Saunders. The incident is famously known as Lahore Conspiracy case (1929).
Bhagat Singh and B.K. Dutt threw a bomb on 8th April 1929 in the Central Legislative Assembly, in protest against the passing of two repressive bills, the Public Safety Bill and the Trade Dispute Bill.
Bhagat Singh was re-arrested for the murder of J.P. Saunders and bomb manufacturing in the Lahore Conspiracy case. He was found guilty in this case and was hanged on 23rd March 1931 in Lahore along with Sukhdev and Rajguru.
Source: The post is based on the article “No more rights to foreign carriers in India. Why?” published in Livemint on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
India says it has no plans to provide any more flying rights or ‘bilateral rights’ to foreign airlines, as the country wants its own carriers to become global players.
What are bilateral air service agreements?
Bilateral air services agreements are between two countries, and they regulate the number of flights airlines can operate.
India has signed such agreements with 116 countries. These can either limit the number of flights operated between two countries or allow unlimited access.
For instance, India has open skies agreements with the US and UK, which allows carriers from both sides to operate an unlimited number of flights between the two countries.
What do foreign airlines want?
Foreign airlines, especially those from West Asia and Southeast Asia have always wanted more entitlements under bilaterals.
Any increase in seats will give foreign carriers access to the Indian market and help fill their flights to Europe and the Americas, beyond their home country. An estimate suggests that 50-80% of Indian passengers boarding large foreign carriers from India, fly beyond the airline’s home country.
Most foreign airlines on these routes have already used up their permitted capacity and have been demanding a further increase in flying rights.
Why is the Indian government against more rights?
The Indian Government wants Indian airlines to become large network carriers or India’s dependence on foreign carriers for connectivity will only grow. Hence, the government has pushed Indian carriers to fly to Europe and the Americas from India.
What could be the impact on air travel?
Fares are a function of capacity and demand. For consumers, ‘no more foreign flights’ would mean high fares in the near-to medium-term.
In the near term, fares are expected to be high on routes where the capacity is limited and demand is strong such as India-Dubai and on routes where flights are few despite open skies such as India-US.
Source: The post is based on the article “What is the Call Before u Dig application launched by PM?” published in Indian Express on 23rd March 2023
What is the News?
The Prime Minister has launched the ‘Call Before u Dig’ (CBuD) app.
What is the Call Before u Dig(CBuD) app?
Launched by: Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Communications.
Aim: To prevent damage to underlying assets like optical fiber cables that occurs because of uncoordinated digging and excavation, leading to losses of about Rs 3,000 crore every year.
How does the app work?
The CBuD app will connect excavators and asset owners through SMS/Email notifications and click-to-call so that there are planned excavations in the country while ensuring the safety of underground assets.
The app will give excavating companies a point of contact where they can inquire about the presence of existing subsurface utilities prior to starting excavation work. Utility owners can also find out about impending work at the location.
Significance of the app: This will save potential business loss and minimize discomfort to the citizens due to reduced disruption in essential services like road, telecom, water, gas and electricity.
Source: The post is based on the article “Jharkhand CM writes to PM, seeks recognition of Sarna religious code for tribals” published in “Indian Express” on 28th September 2023. What is the News? Jharkhand Chief Minister has written to the Prime Minister seeking recognition of the ‘Sarna’ religious code for tribals. What is Sarna religion?… Continue reading Jharkhand CM writes to PM, seeks recognition of Sarna religious code for tribals
Source: The post is based on the article “Law Commission against lowering age of consent under POCSO Act” published in “The Hindu” on 30th September 2023. What is the News? The Law Commission has recommended the government to retain the existing age of consent under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. What… Continue reading Law Commission against lowering age of consent under POCSO Act
Union Minister launches the Intelligent Grievance Monitoring System (IGMS) 2.0 Public Grievance portal and Automated Analysis in Tree Dashboard portal of DARPG
Source: The post is based on the article “Union Minister launches the Intelligent Grievance Monitoring System (IGMS) 2.0 Public Grievance portal and Automated Analysis in Tree Dashboard portal of DARPG” published in “PIB” on 30th September 2023. What is the News? The Union Minister of State for Personnel has launched the Intelligent Grievance Monitoring System… Continue reading Union Minister launches the Intelligent Grievance Monitoring System (IGMS) 2.0 Public Grievance portal and Automated Analysis in Tree Dashboard portal of DARPG
Renewable Energy Company IREDA gets upgraded from ‘Schedule B’ to ‘Schedule A’ Central Public Sector Enterprise
Source: The post is based on the article “Renewable Energy Company IREDA gets upgraded from ‘Schedule B’ to ‘Schedule A’ Central Public Sector Enterprise” published in “PIB” on 30th September 2023. What is the News? Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency Ltd. (IREDA) has been upgraded from ‘Schedule B’ to the ‘Schedule A’ category of Central… Continue reading Renewable Energy Company IREDA gets upgraded from ‘Schedule B’ to ‘Schedule A’ Central Public Sector Enterprise
PM’s call for Ek Tareekh Ek Ghanta Ek Saath could be world’s largest voluntary effort for a cleaner India
Source: The post is based on the article “PM’s call for Ek Tareekh Ek Ghanta Ek Saath could be world’s largest voluntary effort for a cleaner India” published in “PIB” on 30th September 2023. What is the News? Government of India has launched ‘Ek Tareekh Ek Ghanta Ek Saath’ Initiative. What is Ek Tareekh Ek… Continue reading PM’s call for Ek Tareekh Ek Ghanta Ek Saath could be world’s largest voluntary effort for a cleaner India
Source: The post is based on the article “22nd Law Commission submits report on e-FIR” published in “PIB” on 30th September 2023. What is the News? The 22nd Law Commission of India has given several suggestions related to the electronic first information reports (e-FIR). What are the recommendations given by the 22nd Law Commission report… Continue reading 22nd Law Commission submits report on e-FIR
Source: The post is based on the article “New guidelines propose no admissions to students below Class 9 at coaching centers” published in “The Hindu” on 30th September 2023. What is the News? Rajasthan Government has issued guidelines to regulate coaching institutes in Kota, a coaching hub. Who recommended these guidelines? The guidelines were recommended… Continue reading New guidelines propose no admissions to students below Class 9 at coaching centres
Source: This post is created based on the article ‘Global dispute settlement, India and appellate review’ published in The Hindu on 30th Sep, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 2, International Relations News: The G-20 Declaration emphasized the need for reforms in the World Trade Organization (WTO). It was aimed to enhance its functions and ensure… Continue reading Global dispute settlement, India and appellate review
Source: This post is created based on the article ‘Push for more women, this time in the police’ published in The Hindu on 30th Sep, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 2 – Social Issues – News: Recently, One Hundred and Twenty-Eighth Amendment Bill, 2023 has been passed. The bill reserves one-third of total seats in… Continue reading Push for more women, this time in the police
Source: This post is created based on the article ‘Taming Big Tech’ published in Business Standard on 30th Sep, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 2 – Liberalization of Industrial Policies News: Big Tech companies, often referred to as MAMAA (Meta, Amazon, Microsoft, Alphabet, and Apple), are facing increased scrutiny and legal challenges. Recently, significant cases… Continue reading Taming Big Tech
Source: This post is created based on the article ‘Narco Taliban’ published in The Times of India on 30th Sep, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3 – Internal Security News: Methamphetamine, a strong illegal drug, is becoming more popular worldwide, with Afghanistan as a key source. This drug is replacing heroin. Afghanistan has now become… Continue reading Narco Taliban – Why Afghan meth is India’s big headache
Source: This post is created based on the article ‘40th…Now What?’ published in The Times of India on 30th Sep, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3 – Indian Economy – India’s Industrial Policies News: India’s innovation rank in 2023 index is still too low. India’s rise to 40th position in the World Intellectual Property Organisation’s… Continue reading 40th…Now What? India’s Innovation Index 2023
Source: This post is created based on the article ‘India’s wildlife, decimated by hunting and forest exploitation, found succour in national parks’ published in The Times of India on 30th Sep, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3 – Biodiversity Conservation News: Article discusses the evolution of forest and wildlife conservation efforts in India. Evolution of… Continue reading India’s wildlife, decimated by hunting and forest exploitation, found succour in national parks
Source: This post is created based on the article ‘Extended exclusion – on AFSPA’ published in The Hindu on 30th Sep, 2023. Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3 – Internal Security News: The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) will remain in effect in the hill areas of Manipur for another six months from October. This… Continue reading Extended exclusion – on AFSPA
Source: The post is based on the article “On semiconductors, jugaad won’t do” published in The Indian Express on 30th September 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Indigenization of Technology, Growth & Development Relevance: Benefits and challenges associated with setting up semiconductor fabrication unit in India. News: India is finally building its first semiconductor fabrication unit, which is… Continue reading On semiconductors, jugaad won’t do
Source: The post is based on the article “As illicit trade booms, seizure mount: 3.5 tonnes of gold, 18 crore cigarette sticks and 90 tonnes of heroin caught in FY23” published in The Indian Express on 30th September 2023. Syllabus: GS 3 – Internal Security – Linkages of Organized Crime with Terrorism Relevance: Findings of the… Continue reading As illicit trade booms, seizure mount
[Kurukshetra 2023 September] Make In India-Challenges Opportunities and Outcomes-Explained Pointwise
For 7PM Editorial Archives click HERE → ‘Make in India’ launched on 25 September 2014 is one of the game-changing economic initiatives of the Government of India. This timely and appropriate international marketing slogan is aimed at encouraging companies and individuals across the globe to facilitate, foster innovation, build world-class infrastructure and build a hub for manufacturing, design,… Continue reading [Kurukshetra 2023 September] Make In India-Challenges Opportunities and Outcomes-Explained Pointwise
Hello, everyone. We are posting a Compilation of the 10 pm current affairs quiz – September 2023 – 3rd week Click on the following link to download Download The 10 PM Daily Current Affairs Quiz is focused on the current affairs part of UPSC Prelims. The daily current affairs quiz consists of 10 questions based on the daily current… Continue reading [Download] 10 PM Weekly Compilation – September, 2023 – 3rd week
The 69th BPSC Combined Preliminary Competitive Examination was conducted today, i.e. 30 September 2023. This exam, which was conducted in the 1st session from 12 PM to 2 PM, was a General Studies paper. The downloadable PDFs of the 69th BPSC prelims question paper for SET A, SET B, SET C, and SET D are… Continue reading 69th BPSC Prelims Question Paper 2023 | Set A, B, C, and D
Dear Friends, Following are answers to Mains Marathon questions, we posted yesterday. About Mains Marathon – This is an initiative of ForumIAS to help/aid aspirants in their writing skills, which is crucial to conquering mains examination. Every morning, we post 2 questions are based on current affairs. The questions framed are meaningful and relevant to the exam.… Continue reading [Answered] Mains Marathon I Daily Answer Writing I September 29th, 2023
Dear Friends, We are writing to let you know that on Thursday, October 5, at 5 PM we shall be organizing an Interaction Session with Natasha Goel, Rank 175, CSE 2022. Registration link: https://go.forumias.com/5oct5pm Natasha is from JNU, with a background in humanities, who decided to first pursue her preparation with a… Continue reading Meet Natasha, IPS who cleared Civils (after not clearing it 4 times) ! 5th Oct. 5 PM
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… Continue reading Must Read Current Affairs Articles – Sep 30th 2023
Source: The post is based on the article “What is geospatial intelligence? A geographer explains the powerful melding of maps and data” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? Geospatial intelligence has offered valuable insights to help governments and organizations to protect communities from natural disasters. What is Geospatial Intelligence?… Continue reading What is geospatial intelligence? A geographer explains the powerful melding of maps and data
Source: The post is based on the article “Tripura becomes fourth state to introduce e-cabinet system” published in “Indian Express” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? Tripura Chief Minister has launched an e-cabinet system to promote digital infrastructure development and digitisation of government services and information What is an eCabinet system? eCabinet is… Continue reading Tripura becomes fourth state to introduce e-cabinet system
Source: The post is based on the article “MGNREGS social audit unit in a state of paralysis in many States” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? The Social Audit Units under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS). What is Social Audit under MGNREGA? Social Audit is the… Continue reading MGNREGS social audit unit in a state of paralysis in many States
Source: The post is based on the article “Uttar Pradesh Achieves 100% ODF Plus Coverage under Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen” published in “PIB” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? Uttar Pradesh has achieved 100% Open Defecation Free (ODF) Plus coverage under the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) programme. What is ODF Plus village? An… Continue reading Uttar Pradesh Achieves 100% ODF Plus Coverage under Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen
Source: The post is based on the article “What is the ‘Five Eyes’ intelligence alliance?” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? The Canadian Prime Minister has linked the killing of a Khalistani leader on Canadian soil to the Indian government. This has put the spotlight on the intelligence-sharing alliance… Continue reading What is the ‘Five Eyes’ intelligence alliance?
Assam Promotes Pipe Composting: A Unique Way Of Converting Biodegradable Waste Into Manure in Two Months
Source: The post is based on the article “Assam Promotes Pipe Composting: A Unique Way Of Converting Biodegradable Waste Into Manure in Two Months” published in “PIB” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? Assam is actively promoting Pipe Composting among its rural communities during the ongoing Swachhata Hi Seva campaign. What is Pipe… Continue reading Assam Promotes Pipe Composting: A Unique Way Of Converting Biodegradable Waste Into Manure in Two Months
Source: The post is based on the article “Inside the digital world of cookies” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? In the digital world, cookies enhance online experiences but pose privacy and security challenges.Their usage and regulation are evolving in the digital landscape. What are Cookies? Cookies contain tiny… Continue reading Inside the digital world of cookies
Source: The post is based on the article “Union Minister launches CRIIIO 4 GOOD modules to advance gender equality and empower young people” published in “PIB” on 29th September 2023. What is the News? The Union Minister for Education and Skill Development & Entrepreneurship has launched ‘CRIIIO 4 GOOD’, a new online, life skills learning… Continue reading Union Minister launches CRIIIO 4 GOOD modules to advance gender equality and empower young people
Source: The post is based on the article “India retains 40th rank in the Global Innovation Index 2023” published in “PIB” on 28th September 2023. What is the News? Global Innovation Index 2023 has been published by the World Intellectual Property Organization. What is the Global Innovation Index? Click Here to read What are the… Continue reading India retains 40th rank in the Global Innovation Index 2023
Source– The post is based on the article “Bhagat Singh’s Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” published in “The Indian Express” on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS1- Modern Indian history and personalities News– The article explains the Bhagat Singh ideas about the principle of vasudhaiva kutumbakam What are Bhagat Singfh ideas about the ideal of vasudhaiva kutumbakam? Early in… Continue reading Bhagat Singh’s Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam
Source: The post is based on the article “A milestone in Hindu marriage reform in India” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS1- Society- Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India. News: The author is discussing the long struggle in Tamil Nadu, India, for legal recognition of Suyamariyathai (self-respect) marriages, which… Continue reading A milestone in Hindu marriage reform in India
Source: The post is based on the article “A dictionary to prevent a language from vanishing” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS1- Art and culture News: The article is about a rare language, Toto, spoken by 1,600 people near West Bengal and Bhutan. A professor from the University of Calcutta is… Continue reading A dictionary to prevent a language from vanishing
Source– The post is based on the article “Parliament to workplace” published in “The Indian Express” on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS2 – Social empowerment. Relevance – Issues related to women empowerment News– The recent landmark legislation mandating the reservation of a third of parliamentary and assembly seats for women is a game changer for… Continue reading Parliament to workplace
Source: The post is based on the article “Warring Over Water – River fights between states need a single dispute resolution body with real enforcement powers” published in The Times of India on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Indian Polity – Issues and Challenges Pertaining to the Federal Structure Relevance: About Cauvery Water Dispute. News:… Continue reading Warring Over Water – River fights between states need a single dispute resolution body
Source: The post is based on articles “Unhealthy dynamics – Gender bias in cancer care reflects a larger health care crisis” published in Business Standard on 29th September 2023 and “Lancet report on cancer in women is a wake-up call” published in The Indian Express on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS 2 – Social Issues – Issues… Continue reading Unhealthy dynamics – Gender bias in cancer care reflects a larger health care crisis
Source: The post is based on the article “Reform can address India’s kidney transplant deficit” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS2- Governance- Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health News: This article talks about the severe kidney shortage in India, where laws make kidney swaps and… Continue reading Reform can address India’s kidney transplant deficit
Source– The post is based on the article “KEEPING SFBs AFLOAT” published in “The Business Standard” on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Economy Relevance- Issues related to banking sector News– The article explains the issues related to Small finance banks (SFBs). What are some facts about Small Finance Banks (SFBs)? They are designed to promote… Continue reading KEEPING Small Finance Bank (SFBs) AFLOAT
Source– The post is based on the article “We should join the WTO’s investment facilitation talks” published in the “mint” on 28th September 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Economy Relevance- Issues related to WTO News– On 6 July 2023, over 110 of the WTO 164 members concluded text-based negotiations on the Agreement on Investment Facilitation for Development… Continue reading We should join the WTO’s investment facilitation talks
Source: The post is based on the article “Swaminathan walked ahead of his time: scientific community” published in “The Hindu” on 29th September 2023. Syllabus: GS3- Science and technology- Achievements of Indians in science & technology. News: The article is honoring M.S. Swaminathan, a respected agricultural scientist from India who recently passed away. It discusses… Continue reading Swaminathan walked ahead of his time: scientific community
For 7PM Editorial Archives click HERE → Recently, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has released its first report on hypertension. According to the first-ever report released by WHO on the global impact of hypertension, at least 4.6 million deaths in India can be prevented by 2040 if half its hypertensive population controls its blood pressure. What is hypertension?… Continue reading WHO Report on Hypertension-Explained Pointwise
Dear Friends, For those of you who plan to appear for IFoS, we are organising a strategy talk by Anuradha, who has secured Rank 3 in IFoS 2022. Interested candidates, who would like to seek her guidance can visit the offline center and have a small interaction with her. Especially for students… Continue reading IFoS AIR 3 Anuradha Mishra; Interactive session-1st Oct @ 5 PM
Dear Friends, Following are answers to Mains Marathon questions, we posted yesterday. About Mains Marathon – This is an initiative of ForumIAS to help/aid aspirants in their writing skills, which is crucial to conquering mains examination. Every morning, we post 2 questions are based on current affairs. The questions framed are meaningful and relevant to the exam.… Continue reading [Answered] Mains Marathon I Daily Answer Writing I September 28th, 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… Continue reading Must Read Current Affairs Articles – Sep 29th 2023
Source: The post is based on the article “World Coffee Conference in Bengaluru from Sept 25 to 28” published in “ Business Standard” on 28th September 2023. What is the News? Bengaluru is all set to host the 5th World Coffee Conference(WCC). What is the World Coffee Conference(WCC)? Organized by: International Coffee Organisation (ICO) in… Continue reading World Coffee Conference in Bengaluru from Sept 25 to 28
Source: The post is based on the article “Social bonds explained as NABARD raises Rs 1,040 crore via its inaugural issue” published in “CNBC” on 28th September 2023. What is the News? National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has issued its inaugural social bonds with a total size of Rs 1,040.50 crore. What… Continue reading Social bonds explained as NABARD raises Rs 1,040 crore via its inaugural issue
WHO Traditional Medicine Global Summit co-hosted by Ministry of Ayush adopted ecofriendly methods aimed at reducing carbon emissions
Source: The post is based on the article “WHO Traditional Medicine Global Summit co-hosted by Ministry of Ayush adopted ecofriendly methods aimed at reducing carbon emissions” published in “PIB” on 28th September 2023. What is the News? The Ministry of Ayush has been adopting and propagating eco-friendly methods to reduce carbon emissions and environmental pollution… Continue reading WHO Traditional Medicine Global Summit co-hosted by Ministry of Ayush adopted ecofriendly methods aimed at reducing carbon emissions
Source: The post is based on the article “STs trail non-STs in 81 health measures: 2021 study” published in “The Hindu” on 28th September 2023. What is the News? A recent study in ‘The Lancet Regional Health — Southeast Asia’ has analyzed health, nutrition, and population trends among Scheduled Tribes (STs) in India from 2016… Continue reading STs trail non-STs in 81 health measures: 2021 study
Source: The post is based on the article “Green Ammonia Imported through VOC Port, Tamil Nadu for the first time” published in “PIB” on 28th September 2023. What is the News? State-run V O Chidambaranar (VOC) Port located in Tamil Nadu has become the first port in India to handle green ammonia with the arrival… Continue reading Green Ammonia Imported through VOC Port, Tamil Nadu for the first time