9 PM Daily Current Affairs Brief – November 3rd, 2021

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

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

Mains Oriented Articles 

GS Paper 1

GS Paper 2

GS Paper 3

Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)

Mains Oriented Articles

GS Paper 1

Covid 19 as a tail of job hardship and marginalisation

Source: This post is based on the article “Covid 19 as a tail of job hardship and marginalisation” published in The Hindu on 3rd November 2021.

Syllabus: GS1 population and associated issues.

Relevance: Understanding problems by Indian women working in West Asia during Covid times.


Covid-19 pandemic has increased the vulnerabilities of women migrant workers residing in the West Asia region.

According to International Labour Organization (ILO), Gulf Cooperation Council(GCC) hosts about 23 million migrant workers. Among these, Women account for 39% of migrant workers, and this count is continually growing.

How working women in West Asia can be divided?

In West Asia, Working Women can be divided into two categories:

Skilled: include persons in the organized sector, mainly health care workers in West Asia.

Semi/Unskilled: They are domestic workers, care workers, cleaning crew, manufacturing workers, salon staff and salespersons.

What are the job hardship and marginalisation faced by women in the West Asia region?

Skilled women employees: 1. Increased working hours without any remuneration, 2. Not provided enough safety equipment like masks, PPE kits to health care employees, 3. Increased mental stress levels of nurses and hospital staff.

Semi/unskilled women employees: 1. Business enterprises were bankrupt forced women to leave the country or work for lower wages, 2. Not able to finance their health costs as their health insurance does not cover all the costs, 3. illegal employees face more exploitation and abuse.

How to address job hardship and marginalisation of women employees in West Asia?

1. Address the lacunae in the system to identify the root cause, 2. Implement Right-based policies to safeguard the interest of migrants.

GS Paper 2

Trade and climate, the pivot for India-U.S. ties

Source: This post is based on the article “Trade and climate, the pivot for India-U.S. ties” published in The Hindu on 03 November 2021.

Syllabus: GS2- Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

Relevance: To understand the trade and climate dimension of Indo-US ties.

News: The climate and trade and its interplay have a huge potential in strengthening further relationship between India and USA. However, issues needs to be tackled to realize that potential.

India and the USA have forged a strategic relationship over time. Their recent cooperation in creating a free and open Indo-Pacific advancing democratic values and confronting autocracies has given much boost to the partnership.

However, relatively less explored areas of climate and trade needs to be tackled. More areas need to be worked upon.

What are the areas of convergence for the two nations?

China is viewed by both as a strategic competitor. The shared concerns about China provide the U.S.-India partnership a much-needed impetus. However strategic partnerships cannot be based simply on a negative agenda.

Climate and trade- Besides the ongoing ones, the further path of relationship depends on how well India and US collaborate in two less explored areas— climate and trade.

How India and US are collaborating on climate and trade?

Climate-The U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate has visited India twice. India and the U.S. are also collaborating under the Climate and Clean Energy Agenda Partnership.

Trade-Both countries are now prioritising the bilateral trade relationship by rechartering the Trade Policy Forum.

What are the challenges and threats to a long term Indo-US partnership?

India’s rhetoric of climate justice, especially with China, has not been given due importance by US.

The failure of the U.S. and India to articulate a shared vision for a comprehensive trade relationship has been seen. Protectionist tendencies infect the politics of both countries these days.

An immediate threat could be the possibility of tensions were India insists that technology is transferred in ways that undermine incentives for innovation in both countries.

Other threat could be if the U.S. decides that imports from India be subject to increased tariffs in the form of carbon border adjustment mechanisms(CBAM’s).

What is the way forward?

Solar panel trade– Both countries should align their climate and trade approaches, starting with a resolution of their disputes in the WTO on solar panels.

Ethanol trade– India currently bans imports of fuel ethanol.The two countries could chart a path that allows trade to flow for energy sources, such as fuel ethanol.

Concerted action on both the climate and trade fronts is mutually beneficial and will lend additional strength to the foundation of a true partnership for the coming century.

Summitry in the East and India’s Asean ambitions

Source: This post is based on the article “Summitry in the East and India’s ASEAN ambitions” published in Business Standard on 3rd November 2021.

Syllabus: GS 2 Bilateral, Regional and Global Groupings and Agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.


Recently, the 18th India-ASEAN summit and 16th East Asia Summit has occurred.

Over the last few days two major summits, ASEAN summit and East Asia Summit (EAS), were held. These Summits and their declarations highlighted the changing geopolitical scenario of the region and the world.

Southeast Asia is emerging as the new geopolitical hotspot with the intensifying rivalry of China and the USA. India has to navigate tactfully to secure its interest in the region.

What are the initiatives adopted by various countries in the ASEAN region?

USA: 1. Announced $100 million initiative to boost investments in healthcare, climate change and economic recovery. 2) Criticized China’s record on human rights and its actions in Taiwan.

China: 1. Announced $3.1 million Program to purchase medical relief supplies, 2) Criticized USA for supporting pro-independence groups in Taiwan. 3) Announced a special summit to cement China – ASEAN relations.

Read more: impact of US-China rivalry on India

Australia: 1) Announced $93 million economic package to fund climate change, COVID-19 relief, transnational crime and terrorism. 2) Assured its regional partners that AUKUS alliance will not hurt regional security.

Read more: With AUKUS dividing the Western bloc, is there a role for India?

India: 1. Contributed to COVID-19 mitigation efforts, resumption of vaccine exports, connectivity projects. 2) Extended 1 bn $ line of credit for physical and digital connectivity. 3) Ph.D. fellowships to ASEAN students.

What were the challenges within the group of ASEAN countries?

1) Diverse opinion between ASEAN members: Indonesia and Malaysia have expressed concern at the prospect of an evolving arms race in the region, on the other hand, Singapore, Vietnam and the Philippines have supported AUKUS and other such initiatives,  2) Disputed territories in the South China Sea, 3. Human rights violations in Myanmar.

What should be India’s strategy in the ASEAN region?

India can use its expertise its knowledge by Collaborating with the QUAD countries in various fields like science and technology, sustainable finance, climate change etc. India should make full use of the newly built Quad Critical Emerging Technologies grouping to develop technical standards and digital infrastructure in Southeast Asia according to its advantage.

Read more: Quad and India: challenges and opportunities

GS Paper 3

Leaders vow to protect forests, plug methane leaks at COP26

Source: This post is based on the article “Leaders vow to protect forests, plug methane leaks at COP26” & “CoP26 summit | Leaders pledge to cut methane and save forests” published in ToI and The Hindu on 3rd November 2021.

Syllabus: GS3- Conservation, Environmental Pollution and Degradation

Relevance: CoP26 (Glasgow) , Paris agreement goals, Climate change

News: World leaders promised to protect Earth’s forests, cut methane emissions and help South Africa halt itself off coal at the U.N. climate summit.

What is Global methane Pledge?

The Global Methane Pledge, first announced in September, now covers emissions from two-thirds of the global economy

Nearly 90 countries have joined a U.S.-and EU-led effort to slash emissions of methane by 30% by 2030 from 2020 levels,

China, Russia, and India have not signed up, while Australia has said it will not back the pledge.

Why it is needed?

Methane is more short-lived in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide but 80 times more potent in warming the earth.

Methane is generated in cows’ digestive systems, in landfill waste, and in oil and gas production. It is estimated that Methane has accounted for 30% of global warming since pre-industrial times.

What commitments were made to reverse deforestation and land degradation?

More than 100 national leaders pledged to halt and reverse deforestation and land degradation by the end of the decade.

They also established $19 billion in public and private funds to invest in protecting and restoring forests.

The private sector has also pledged to stop investing in activities linked to deforestation such as cattle, palm oil, and soybean farming and pulp production.

Effective role Indigenous communities in preventing deforestation have been acknowledged.

The agreement vastly expands a commitment made by 40 countries as part of the 2014 New York Declaration of Forests, and promises more resources.

What commitments were made to support South Africa towards renewable energy transition?

United States, Britain, France and Germany announce a plan to provide funds and expertise to help South Africa phase out coal, a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.

South Africa, which gets about 90% of its electricity from coal-fired plants, will receive about $8.5 billion in loans and grants over five years to roll out more renewable energy.

Explained: When can PSU bank staff be probed for NPAs?

Source: This post is based on the following articles

  • “Banking accountability” published in Business Standard on 3rd November 2021.
  • Explained: When can PSU bank staff be probed for NPAs?” published in Indian Express on 3rd November 2021.

Syllabus: GS3- Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources.

Relevance: To understand new staff accountability guidelines.


Recently the Finance Ministry has issued a fresh set of norms to guide state-owned banks in adopting a uniform staff accountability framework for non-performing assets (NPAs) up to Rs 50 crore.

Must read: PSBs to introduce common staff accountability guidelines for NPAs
What are the reasons for the introduction of accountability guidelines for PSBs?

The extremely cautious and risk-aversive approach of PSBs: The Punjab National Bank fraud in 2018 and a series of other unrelated frauds and tough action against bank officials led to a situation where PSBs stalling credit deployment and impacting economic growth.

Fear of 3Cs: In 2019, the Finance Minister mentions that Officials of the bank fear the scrutiny of “3Cs – CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation), CVC (Central Vigilance Commission) and CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General)” and holding banking decisions.

What can be done to improve PSBs performance further?

Solving the accountability issue of PSBs is a good step, but the government needs wider reforms to address the core issues,

1. Strengthen their credit-appraisal system: To sharpen PSBS credit-pricing skills and reduce loan write-offs, 2. Providing regulatory powers to RBI to regulate PSBs like they regulate private banks, 3. Guaranteed functional autonomy for PSBs and adequate opportunities to defend in case of investigations, 4. Alignment of job incentives with commercial outcomes.

All these will increase 1. The lending confidence of PSBs, 2. Instil discipline among PSBs, 3. Reduce NPAs and Frauds, 4. Improve the operational efficiency of PSBs and 5. Raise the valuations of banks put up for privatization.

Note: PSBs have written off loans worth more than Rs 8 trillion over the past seven years, which is more than twice the capital infused by the government during the same period. This is not a viable way to banking.

Ensuring that policy outcome matches the intent

Source: This post is based on the article “Ensuring that policy outcome matches the intent” published in Indian Express on 3rd November 2021.

Syllabus: GS 3 – Budget and resources.

Relevance: Understanding budgeting and state financing.


Structural limitations of the polity in India has led to a phrase that the government is spending a rupee to provide 50 paise of benefits.

States need to invent their own development models to escape the Financial mismanagement and the structural issues in budgeting and resource allocations.

What are the issues associated with State Funding?

The government in India provides public services at subsidized prices and at times is even willing to take losses. But Financial mismanagement in public services rise due to, 1) Policy differences between the centre and the states. 2) Differences between parties and coalitions. 3) Structural issues in the budget.

What are the structural issues in the Budget?

Accounts preparation: The Financial Accounts (FA) are presented to the legislature after 18 to 24 months of budget approval along with the Revised Estimates (RE) for the current year. This means that less attention is paid to the outcomes of the previous budget as the focus is more on the current budget.

Cash accounting: Governments sticks to outdated cash accounting as opposed to accrual(Accumulation) accounting. This leads to 1. A spending rush at the end of the year, 2. Funds marked as spent might be held in some off-balance account and hidden from the government’s finance department.

How did the Tamil Nadu government addressed the structural issues?

TN government adopted a set of 5 reforms, these include – (1) Collect and analysing data to develop a deeper understanding, (2) Data-centric governance, (3) public asset and risk management, (4) disseminating results into the public domain and generate a public debate, and (5) strengthening the role of the legislature and course correct with public feedback.

What is the outcome of TN government initiatives?

First, Approx Rs 2,000 crore of funds have been verified as “lapsed” and will be returned to the state treasury.

Second, procedures are being established to ensure that moving/parking of funds cannot happen outside the finance department’s oversight.

Third, Many discrepancies like ghost pension etc. have been identified which will translate to savings for the government.

All these steps, if executed diligently by the Centre and State governments, can overcome the issues of financial mismanagement and provide enough fiscal space to the government to meet its desired outcomes.

Prelims Oriented Articles (Factly)

Last seven years warmest on record, says WMO report

Source: This post is based on the article Last seven years warmest on record, says WMO report published in AIR on 2nd November 2021.

What is the News?

The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) has released the State of the Climate report 2021.

What is the purpose of the State of the Climate report 2021?

The State of the Climate report provides a snapshot of climate indicators including temperatures, extreme weather events, sea level rises and ocean conditions.

What are the key findings of the State of the Climate report 2021?

Temperature: 2021 will be between the 5th and 7th warmest year on record and 2015 to 2021 will be the seven warmest years on record.

2021 is less warm than in recent years due to the influence of a moderate La Niña at the start of the year. 

Sea Level Rise: Global sea-level rise has accelerated since 2013 and has reached a new high in 2021 due to continued ocean warming and ocean acidification.

Extreme Events are becoming a norm: The report has listed some of the extreme events that have been experienced around the world this year:

  • It rained – rather than snowed – for the first time on record at the peak of the Greenland ice sheet.
  • A heatwave in Canada and adjacent parts of the USA pushed temperatures to nearly 50 °C in a village in British Columbia.
  • Death Valley, California reached 54.4 °C during one of the multiple heatwaves in the south-western USA.

Forests declaration: India reads fine print, chooses to stay away

Source: This post is based on the articleForests declaration: India reads fine print, chooses to stay away published in “Indian Express” on 3rd November 2021.

What is the News?

India has not signed the Glasgow Leaders Declaration on Forests and Land Use.

What is Glasgow Leaders Declaration on Forests and Land Use?

It is an ambitious declaration initiated by the United Kingdom to “halt deforestation” and land degradation by 2030.

The declaration has been signed by over 105 countries including the UK, US, Russia and China.

India, Argentina, Mexico, Saudi Arabia and South Africa are the only G20 countries that did not sign the declaration.

Why has India not signed the Glasgow Leaders Declaration on Forests and Land Use?

Declaration interlinks trade, infrastructure development and related activities with the conservation of forests. But India has objected that trade falls under the WTO, and it should not be brought under climate change declarations. 

Also, India is also contemplating changes to the existing Forest Conservation Act, 1980 to allow more windows of deforestation for accommodating key projects. Such efforts would be impacted if India becomes part of the forest pact as proposed in Glasgow.

Hence, India had asked the word “trade” to be removed. But the other countries did not agree. So, India has not signed the declaration.

What are the other declarations signed at COP 26?

Congo Basin pledge: The UK also presented the Congo Basin Pledge. It has been signed by over 10 countries, the Bezos Earth Fund and the European Union.

The pledge aims to mobilize a 1.5 billion dollar fund to protect the Congo Basin –home to the second-largest tropical rainforest in the world.

India and UK join hands to help small island nations build climate resilient infrastructure

Source: This post is based on the following articles: 

  • India to help countries prone to climate changepublished in The Hindu on 3rd November 2021.
  • “India and UK join hands to help small island nations build climate resilient infrastructurepublished in TOI on 3rd November 2021
  • ISRO ‘data window’ in India-led plan to boost infra in island nations published in Indian Express on 3rd November 2021.
What is the News?

India and the UK have launched the Infrastructure for Resilient Island States(IRIS) Initiative.

What is Infrastructure for Resilient Island States(IRIS) Initiative?

IRIS is the first major initiative under the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI).

Aim: To make critical infrastructure in the SIDS (Small Island Developing States) resilient against all kinds of disasters.

As part of the initiative, the Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO) will create a special “data window” for SIDS (Small Island Developing States).

This window will provide SIDS countries timely information about cyclones, coral-reef monitoring, coast-line monitoring through the satellite. This will strengthen their fences against climate disasters.

Click Here to read more about IRIS

Other Initiatives launched at COP26

Glasgow Breakthrough Agenda: The aim of this agenda is to make clean technologies the most affordable, accessible and attractive choice for all globally in each of the most polluting sectors by 2030.

Around 35 countries have signed up this agenda including the US, India, EU, developing economies and some of those most vulnerable to climate change 

Set up Police Complaints Authorities, NHRC tells Union Home Ministry, States

Source: This post is based on the article Set up Police Complaints Authorities, NHRC tells Union Home Ministry, Statespublished in The Hindu on 3rd November 2021.

What is the News?

The National Human Rights Commission(NHRC) core advisory group on criminal justice system reforms has issued several directives to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs and the State Governments on the reforms in the Criminal Justice System.

What are the recommendations given by NHRC?

Police Complaint Authorities: State and Central Governments should set up Police Complaints Authorities at the State/UT and district level as per the judgment in Prakash Singh vs. Union of India, 2006.

Include section 114B to the Indian Evidence Act: Government should consider implementing recommendations of the 113th report of the Law Commission to add Section 114 B to the Indian Evidence Act. This would ensure that in case a person sustains injuries in police custody, it is presumed that the injuries were inflicted by the police and the burden of proof to explain the injury lies on the authority concerned.

Technology Friendly Legal Framework: Make the legal framework technology-friendly to speed up the criminal justice system.

Install CCTVs in Police Stations: The Supreme Court’s December 2020 order to instal CCTV cameras with night vision in all police stations should be implemented immediately to ensure accountability. 

Community Policing: Involve trained social workers and law students with police stations as part of community policing and incorporate community policing in police manuals, laws and advisories.

Union Minister for Jal Shakti inaugurates ‘Ganga Utsav 2021 – The River Festival’

Source: This post is based on the articleUnion Minister for Jal Shakti inaugurates Ganga Utsav 2021 – The River Festival published in “PIB” on 1st November 2021.

What is the News?

Union minister for Jal Shakti has launched several initiatives during the 5th edition of Ganga Utsav.

What are the initiatives launched?
Continuous Learning and Activity Portal (CLAP)

Developed by:  National Mission for Clean Ganga(NMCG)  in association with Tree Craze Foundation.

Purpose of the Portal: It is an interactive portal that is working towards initiating conversations and action around the rivers in India. The Portal is also a platform to facilitate debates and discussions and express ideas on various issues pertaining to the environment, water and rivers.

Funded and supported by: The World Bank. 

Ganga Atlas

It was developed by IIT Kanpur. It documents the changes in River Ganga over the past 5-6 decades in terms of channel morphology, land use & land cover, river dynamics and associated issues.

Ganga Mashal

It is an expedition led by the Ganga Task Force (GTF). They will travel across 23 stations along the river Ganga to help sensitize the local people and organizations like Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan(NYKS) and Voluntary groups.

Note: GTF is a unit of a battalion of ex-servicemen deployed in the services of the Ganga with the approval of the Ministry of Defence for the period of four years till December 2020.

Ganga Quest

It is a national online quiz on Ganga, rivers, and the environment. The quiz was first conceptualized in 2019 as an educational program to sensitize children and youth towards River Ganga to strengthen the Namami Gange program.

Local knowledge refined with tech & funds can help climate adaptation in Asia-Pacific: IFAD

Source: This post is based on the articleLocal knowledge refined with tech & funds can help climate adaptation in Asia-Pacific: IFAD published in “Down To Earth” on 2nd November 2021.

What is the News?

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) has released a report titled “Building climate resilience in the Asia Pacific region report”.

What are the key highlights of the report?

Asia Pacific Region and its vulnerability to Climate Change

The Asia-Pacific region is home to two-thirds of the world’s poorest people. Climate change is posing an additional threat to the region, and the rural population dependent on rainfed agriculture has been affected.

According to UNESCAP, climate, weather and geophysical hazards cost the region an estimated $780 billion annually. So, climate resilience and adaptation must be prioritised to deal with these challenges.

What are the measures needed to be taken to deal with the Climate Crisis?

Local knowledge must be used for adapting to the climate crisis.

Effective use of technology to accelerate climate risks and impacts assessments. For example, Digital mapping along with local knowledge can be useful to identify climate-vulnerable hotspots.

Public-private partnerships should be adopted, as private players can provide new inputs needed by smallholder farmers when they adopt new crops and cultivation techniques. They can also connect them with markets for new, more profitable kinds of produce.

The initiative launched by IFAD to help adapt to Climate Change
Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Programme (ASAP)

ASAP was launched by the IFAD in 2012. It is the organisation’s flagship programme for channelling climate and environmental finance to smallholder farmers. 

The programme has helped smallholder farmers in 41 countries cope with the impact of climate change and build more resilient livelihoods.

These included rural development projects in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Laos, Nepal and Vietnam.

This programme ran from 2012-2017. Now the Enhanced Adaptation for Smallholder Agricultural Programme(ASAP+) will be launched. It will focus more on women and youth.

Union Home Minister launches ‘Ayushman CAPF’ Scheme health cards at the national level in New Delhi

Source: This post is based on the article Union Home Minister launches ‘Ayushman CAPF’ Scheme health cards at the national level in New Delhipublished in PIB on 2nd November 2021.

What is the News?

The Union Home Minister has launched the ‘Ayushmaan CAPF’ Scheme health cards at the national level.

Click Here to read about Ayushman Bharat Programme

What is the Ayushman CAPF Scheme?

Ayushman CAPF is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Home Affairs(MHA), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(MoHFW) and National Health Authority(NHA).

Eligibility: The scheme covers serving personnel and their dependents from Assam Rifles, Border Security Force (BSF), Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB), Central Reserve Police Force(CRPF), Central Industrial Security Force(CISF), National Security Guard(NSG) and Indo-Tibetan Border Police(ITBP).

Benefits under the scheme: CAPF personnel and their families will be able to avail cashless in-patient and out-patient healthcare facilities at all Hospitals empanelled under Ayushmaan Bharat PM-JAY or Central Government Health Scheme(CGHS).

Incentives announced for Cashless Transaction on e-Chhawani Portal of Cantonment Board to promote digital economy

Source: This post is based on the article Incentives announced for Cashless Transaction on e-Chhawani Portal of Cantonment Board to promote digital economypublished in PIB on 2nd November 2021.

What is the News?

Defence Ministry has announced that cantonment Board residents availing services through its e-Chhawani website will be getting a rebate of up to 2% on non-tax charges and fees if they pay online.

What is e-Chhawani?

e-Chhawani is a citizen-centric project of Directorate General of Defence Estates, Ministry of Defence. 

Under this initiative, Cantonment Boards provide online citizen services to more than 20 lakh residents across 62 Cantonments in the country through the unified e-Chhawani Portal. 

The services provided by the portal include a grant of Trade licences, renewal of leases, water and sewerage connections, Births and Deaths certificates, appointments in cantonment hospitals among others.

These services are being provided in a paperless, faceless and cashless environment.

Indian Astronomers find new method to study environment of extrasolar planets using polarisation of light

Source:  This post is based on the article Indian Astronomers find new method to study environment of extrasolar planets using polarisation of lightpublished in PIB on 3rd November 2021.

What is the News?

Indian Astronomers have found a new method to understand the atmosphere of extrasolar planets. They have shown that planets going around stars other than the Sun can be studied by observing the polarisation of light and studying polarisation signatures.

What is polarised light?

Light is a transverse wave. It vibrates up and down as it travels forwards. But ‘up’ and ‘down’ are not fixed directions. The vibrations could be vertical, horizontal or at any angle in between. 

However, Polarised light is made up of waves with vibrations at only one angle.

How is light polarised?

Light can be polarised by passing it through a polarising filter. A polarising filter has all its molecules aligned in the same direction. As a result, only waves with vibrations aligned in the same direction can pass through.

Since only a small selection of the waves can pass through a polarising filter, the overall intensity of the light is reduced.

For example, sunglasses can be polarised to reduce brightness and glare without compromising the vision.

RBI unveils revised PCA framework

Source: This post is based on the article “RBI unveils revised PCA framework” published in Livemint on 3rd November 2021.

What is the news?

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has unveiled a revised PCA framework for Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs), and the changes will be effective from 1 Jan, 2022.

The framework was last revised in April 2017.

What changes have been made to the PCA framework?

RBI has made the following changes to its existing PCA framework:

– Profitability parameter excluded from its list of triggers. As per the 2017 PCA framework, capital, asset quality and profitability were the key areas for monitoring the risk of a bank.

– RBI has also revised the level of shortfall in total capital adequacy ratio that would push the lender to “risk threshold three” category. Lenders breaching this risk threshold have the most stringent restrictions placed under PCA.

The indicators that will be tracked for capital, asset quality and leverage would be CRAR/ common equity tier I ratio 2 , net NPA ratio 3 and tier I leverage ratio 4 respectively.

– Payments banks and small finance banks (SFBs) have also been removed from the list of lenders where prompt corrective action can be initiated.

In governance related actions, the RBI can supersede the board under Section 36ACA of the BR Act, 1949.

The breach of any risk threshold may result in invocation of the PCA. The framework will apply to all banks operating in India, including foreign banks operating through branches or subsidiaries based on breach of risk thresholds of identified indicators.

A bank will generally be placed under PCA framework based on the Audited Annual Financial Results and the ongoing Supervisory Assessment made by RBI.

Must Read: What is the PCA framework?
Why the PCA framework has been revised?

The central bank’s revised PCA norms in 2017 had faced significant criticism, with some saying it led to a slowdown in credit flow.

In fact, in October 2018, RBI’s then deputy governor Viral Acharya had to defend the revised PCA norms.

Which banks are currently under PCA framework?

Following Indian Overseas Bank’s exit in September, only Central Bank of India now remains under PCA.

India, UK launch first transnational solar grid plan: On OSOWOG initiative

Source: This post is based on the following articles “India, UK launch first transnational solar grid plan” published in Livemint on 03 Nov 2021 and “One Sun, One World, One Grid for seamless energy” published in The Hindu on 03 Nov 2021.

What is the news?

India and UK have unveiled an ambitious plan for the world’s first transnational network of interconnected solar power grids—Green Grids Initiative: One Sun One World One Grid at COP26 at Glasgow.

The two Prime Ministers presented One Sun Declaration, endorsed by more than 80 countries, setting out OSOWOG’s aims.

Must Read: What is OSOWOG?
More about OSOWOG

It includes smart grids connecting millions of solar panels and charging points for electric vehicles, and microgrids for rural communities and to ensure resilience during extreme weather events. It aims to provide countries across the world with clean energy drawn from the sun through a series of interconnected grids.

The Green Grids Initiative was first developed by the Climate Parliament, an international network of climate legislators.

Members: Australia, France, India, the US and UK are the main members of the initiative, which has the backing of 80 members of the 99 nation strong International Solar Alliance (ISA).

What are the potential benefits of OSOWOG?

– All the energy humanity uses in a year is equal to the energy that reaches the earth from the sun in a single hour. By trading energy from sun, wind and water across borders, OSOWOG can deliver more than enough clean energy to meet the needs of everyone on earth. This will lessen the need for storage and increase the viability of solar projects.

Reduction in carbon footprint and in the cost of energy.

– Fostering of a spirit of cooperation among different countries and regions of the world,

Must Read: OSOWOG Explained – Everything you need to know
How is the OSOWOG initiative structured?

A Ministerial Steering Group will work towards accelerating the making of large solar power stations and wind farms in the best locations, linked together by continental-scale grids crossing national borders. Members: Group shall have members from France, India, UK and USA, Africa, the Gulf, Latin America and Southeast Asia

Research support for the Green Grids Initiative is being provided by the Climate Compatible Growth consortium of universities, which includes Cambridge, Imperial College, Oxford and University College London.

The Green Climate Fund, established to channel part of the $100 billion a year pledged by rich countries in the climate negotiations, is leading a Finance working group


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