Answers: Mains Marathon – UPSC Mains Current Affairs Questions – March 26, 2019

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Q.1) What are electoral bonds? What are the benefits and challenges attach with it?

Answer:

Electoral bonds are bearer bonds which are not registered in the name of a specific owner and will pay to whoever bears them.

A person wishing to donate to a political party can purchase these bonds from an authorized bank using cheques or digital payment methods. These bonds shall be redeemable only in the designated account of a registered political party.

Benefits:

  1. bring more transparency on who the donor and donee is
  2. curbs anonymous donations and keep a check on parties that are formed only with an eye on availing the benefits of income tax exemption
  3. the bonds can be encashed by an eligible political party only through a designated bank account with an authorised bank. Every political party has to submit details of one designated account to the Election Commission and the bonds can be encashed only in that account.

Challenges:

  1. bonds will help any party that is in power because the government can know who donated what money and to whom.
  2. Any potential donor, corporate houses or industrialists do not have to worry about donating to the party in power, but will have to worry about donating to party in opposition. Any party in power wants to know the donors for opposition and they may face some trouble.
  3. Also income tax breaks may not be available for donations through electoral bonds. This pushes the donor to choose between remaining anonymous and saving on taxes.

 

Q.2) Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) is successful in reducing mortality, but failing to control TB. Comment. What are challenges in India’s plan to eliminate TB?

Answer:

India continues to have the highest number of tuberculosis (TB) cases in the world as revealed by the Global TB Report 2017 of World Health Organization (WHO).

Reasons for prevalence of TB:

  1. Rising cases of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) in India
  2. Poor diagnosis of TB
  3. Challenges due to increasing HIV-TB double burden
  4. Over reliance on over the counter drugs for medication is strengthening drug resistance
  5. Underreporting and underdiagnosis of TB cases continue to be a challenge
  6. Unregulated private sector and weak primary health systems
  7. TB care and prevention investment remains low

 

Q.3) India has enormous potential of ‘blue economy’ to achieve higher economic growth. What are the steps taken by India to promote blue economy? Also, mention the challenges faced by India to reap the benefits?

Answer:

The ‘Blue Economy’ is an emerging concept which encourages better stewardship of our ocean or ‘blue’ resources.

Steps taken:

  1. Development of ports through initiatives like Sagarmala
  2. Initiatives like SAGAR; strengthening maritime ties with nations in the Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal littoral
  3. Boosting capacity of underwater technologies to explore resources in the EEZ
  4. National Policy on Marine Fisheries 2017
  5. Climate change adaptation mechanisms and strategies
  6. Development of island chains

Challenges:

  1. Strategically, Chinese presence around India as per its String of Pearls strategy
  2. Technological and financial backwardness of fishermen
  3. Poor port infrastructure and logistics backwardness
  4. Lack of technological advances for underwater explorations

 

Q.4 What is the difference between condensation and precipitation? What are various forms of condensation?

Answer:

Condensation is the process by which water vapor is changed back into liquid water. Precipitation is any product of the condensation of atmospheric water vapor that falls under gravity.

Types of condensation:

  1. Dew: the water droplets formed by condensation of water vapor on a relatively cold surface of an object. It forms when the temperature of an object drops below the dew point temperature.
  2. Frost: the ice crystals formed by deposition of water vapor on a relatively cold surface of an object. It forms when the temperature of an object drops below the frost point temperature.
  3. Fog: a suspended tiny water droplets or ice crystals in an air layer next to the Earth’s surface that reduces the visibility to 1000 m (3250 ft.) or lower.
  4. Cloud: a visible aggregate of tiny water droplets or ice crystals or a mixture of both suspended in the air.
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