Argutes

Daily Current Affairs for UPSC Civil Services Exam – 27 October 2021

1. Veer Savarkar: The Man Who Could Have Prevented Partition

  1. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh launched the book titled “Veer Savarkar: The Man Who Could Have Prevented Partition” authored by Uday Mahurkar.
  2. Veteran journalist & political analyst Uday Mahurkar along with co-author Chirayu Pandit in their book write about the visionary that Savarkar was and how he had envisioned the national security problems India is facing today

About Savarkar

  1. VD Savarkar was born on 28th May 1883 in Bhagur, a village near Nashik in Maharashtra.
  2. Founded a secret society called Abhinav Bharat Society.
  3. Went to the United Kingdom and was involved with organizations such as India House and the Free India Society.
  4. Involved in the formation of Hindu Mahasabha.
  5. He was the president of Hindu Mahasabha from 1937 to 1943.
  6. Savarkar wrote a book titled ‘The History of the War of Indian Independence’ in which he wrote about the guerilla warfare tricks used in the 1857 Sepoy Mutiny.
  7. He also wrote the book ‘Hindutva: who is Hindu?’
  8. Arrested in 1909 on charges of plotting an armed revolt against the Morley-Minto reform (Indian Councils Act 1909).
  9. Arrested in 1910 for his connections with the revolutionary group India House.
  10. One of the charges on Savarkar was abetment to murder of Nashik Collector Jackson and the second was waging a conspiracy under Indian penal code 121-A against the King emperor.
  11. He was not considered by the British government as a political prisoner.
  12. Death: He died on 26th February 1966 due to fasting on his own wish of death.

2. Mukyamantri Ration Apke Dwar Yojana

  1. The government of Madhya Pradesh (MP) has announced the implementation of the scheme ‘‘Mukhyamantri Ration Apke Dwar Yojana”, which will start from November 2021.
  2. Under this scheme, the ration will be provided at the doorstep of the villagers where there are no Fair Price Shops (FPS).
  3. To provide ration material to the vulnerable sections such as Divyanga (Specially-Abled) and senior citizens near their homes.
  4. To ensure proper ration supply for poor tribal families in each village bin 74 tribal dominated blocks of 16 districts.

3. National Steering Committee

  1.  National Steering Committee (NSC) has been formed for the implementation of the NIPUN Bharat Mission.
  2. NIPUN (National Initiative for Proficiency in Reading with Understanding and Numeracy) Bharat Scheme was launched earlier this year as part of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.

Insights

  1. It is responsible oversee the progress of the National Mission on Foundational Literacy and Numeracy and providing guidance on policy issues.
  2. It aims to arrive at the target to be achieved nationally in 2026-27.
  3. It foresees to disseminate tools for the measurement of yearly progress in the form of guidelines.
  4. It prepares and approves a National Action Plan (based on the State’s Action Plans).
  5. It reviews programmatic and financial norms periodically to ensure they are synchronized with targets to be achieved.

NIPUN Bharat Mission

The mission aims to create an enabling environment to ensure the universal acquisition of foundational literacy and numeracy, so that every child achieves the desired learning competencies in reading, writing, and numeracy by the end of Grade 3, by 2026-27.

Insights

  1. It will focus on providing access and retaining children in foundational years of schooling; teacher capacity building; development of high quality and diversified Student and Teacher Resources/Learning Materials; and tracking the progress of each child in achieving learning outcomes.
  2. NIPUN Bharat will be implemented by the Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of Education.
  3. A five-tier implementation mechanism will be set up at the National- State- District- Block- School level in all States and UTs, under the aegis of the centrally sponsored scheme of Samagra Shiksha.
  4. A special package for Foundational Literacy and Numeracy (FLN) under NISHTHA (National Initiative for School Heads and Teachers Holistic Advancement) is being developed by NCERT.
  5. Stage-wise targets are being set in a continuum from the pre-primary or Bal Vatika classes.

Drug price regulator National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA)  has fixed the ceiling prices for 12 anti-diabetic generic medicines, including glimepiride tablets, glucose injection, and intermediate-acting insulin solution.

Drug Prices Control Order, 2013

  1. Under the provisions of DPCO 2013, only the prices of drugs that figure in the National List of Essential Medicines (NLEM) are monitored and controlled by the regulator, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority.
  2. Essential medicines are those that satisfy the priority healthcare needs of the majority of the population.
  3. The primary purpose of NLEM is to promote rational use of medicines considering the three important aspects i.e. cost, safety, and efficacy.
  4. Paragraph 19 of the DPCO, 2013, deals with an increase or decrease in drug prices under extraordinary circumstances.
  5.  However, there is neither a precedent nor any formula prescribed for the upward revision of ceiling prices.

5. Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission

  1. Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission, one of the largest pan-India schemes for strengthening healthcare infrastructure is launched in Varanasi.
  2.  It is in addition to the National Health Mission.
  3. Its objective is to fill gaps in public health infrastructure, especially in critical care facilities and primary care in both urban and rural areas.
  4. It will provide support for 17,788 rural health and wellness centers in 10 high-focus states.
  5. Further, 11,024 urban health and wellness centers will be established in all the States.
  6. Through this, critical care services will be available in all the districts of the country with more than five lakh populations through exclusive critical care hospital blocks, while the remaining districts will be covered through referral services.

6. International Institute for Environment and Development survey

In a survey of more than 1,000 households across three Indian States, nearly 70% of respondents said they migrated immediately after such weather disasters occur.

Highlights

  1. Seasonal migration was high among people affected by droughts and floods that damaged crops, or by cyclones that hampered fishing, according to the study, one of the first to quantify the impacts of climate change on migration in India.
  2. A rise in extreme weather events in India from droughts and floods to heatwaves and hailstorms is fuelling climate migration as the nation’s poorest are forced to abandon their homes, land, and livelihoods.
  3. Many of India’s poorest people such as small farmers are finding it harder to cope with the damage caused by severe weather as the country braces for rising sea levels, more heatwaves and fiercer cyclones.

Need to Plan

  1. India’s first climate change assessment report, published in 2020, projected that temperatures would rise 4.4 degrees Celsius by the end of the century in a “business as usual” scenario.
  2. The frequency of heatwaves will be up to four times higher, cyclone intensity will increase and sea level will rise by 30 cm (12 inches) if action is not taken.
  3. More than 70% of households in the study said droughts were happening significantly more often in the last 5 to 10 years, leading to an increase in so-called distress migration when people feel they have no other option to survive.
  4. India’s social protection programs do not consider extreme weather and were not designed to build climate resilience.

7. Trigonopterus corona

  1. On the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, museum scientists have discovered 28 new species of beetles.
  2. The species, all of which measure 2-3 mm, are described in the journal Zookeys.
  3. One of them has been named Trigonopterus corona.
  4. This reflects the large impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on this project.
  5. It is not the only insect species to be named after the pandemic.
  6. In April, a new species of caddisfly was collected near a stream in Kosovo by a team of scientists and named Potamophylax coronavirus.

8. Konkan Shakti 2021

  1. The exercise between the Navy’s of India and the United Kingdom is the first-ever joint exercise for interoperability and synergy.
  2. The maiden India-UK Joint Tri-Service exercise Konkan Shakti showcased majestic flypast by the fighters of the Indian Air Force and Navy.
  3. The exercise that started off the west coast of India on October 21 is now in its second phase at sea.

9. New Rules of Power Ministry

  1. The Ministry of Power announced new rules to sustain the economic viability of the sector, ease the financial stress of various stakeholders and ensure timely recovery of costs involved in electricity generation.
  2. The rules notified by the Ministry of Power under the Electricity Act, 2003 are in the interest of the electricity consumers and the stakeholders.
  3. The rules include Electricity (Timely recovery of costs due to Change in Law) Rules, 2021.
  4. The other rule is Electricity (Promotion of generation from renewable sources of energy by addressing Must Run and other matters) Rules, 2021.

New Rules

  1. A formula has been provided to calculate adjustments in the monthly tariff due to the impact of change in the law.
  2. The rules also provide that a must-run power plant shall not be subjected to curtailment or regulation of generation or supply of electricity on account of merit order dispatch or any other commercial consideration.
  3. The electricity generated from a must-run power plant may be curtailed or regulated only in the event of any technical constraint in the electricity grid or for reasons of security of the electricity grid.
  4. For curtailment or regulation of power, the provisions of the Indian Electricity Grid Code shall be followed.
  5. In the event of curtailment of supply from a must-run power plant, compensation shall be payable by the procurer to the must-run power plant at the rates specified in the agreement for purchase or supply of electricity.
  6. The RE generator is also allowed to sell power in the power exchange and recover the cost suitably.
  7. This helps in the realization of revenue by the generator and also the power is available in the electricity grid for use of consumers.

Way Forward

  1. The Ministry notified rules for the sustainability of the electricity sector and the promotion of clean energy to meet India’s commitment to climate change.
  2. Investors and other stakeholders in the power sector had been concerned about the timely recovery of the costs due to change in law, curtailment of renewable power, and other related matters.

10. Basel-III Extended

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) decided to extend the Basel-III Capital framework to All India Financial Institutions (AIFIs) such as Export-Import Bank of India (EXIM Bank), the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard), National Housing Bank (NHB) and the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI).

Insights

  1. Basel Norms are the international banking regulations.
  2. Basel III Accord was developed by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS).
  3. In 2010, Basel III guidelines were released.
  4. It was developed in response to the shortcomings in financial regulations exposed during the financial crisis of 2007-08.
  5. It is a set of agreements by BCBS that focuses on the risks to banks and the financial system.
  6. With the goal of strengthening the international banking system, Basel norms put an effort to coordinate banking regulations across the globe.
  7. The objective of Basel Norms III is to increase the liquidity of banks and decrease bank leverage.
  8. The 3 main pillars or 3 main principles of Basel III are given below.
    • Minimum Capital Requirements
    • Leverage Ratio
    • Liquidity Requirements

11. Disarmament Week

  1. Disarmament Week is observed annually to promote awareness and understanding of the issues of disarmament in several countries.
  2. The week aims to reduce the use of weapons, specifically nuclear weapons, to bring peace to society.
  3. This year, the disarmament week will be starting on October 24.
  4. The week-long observance will continue till October 30.

UNDC

  1. The United Nations Disarmament Commission (UNDC) was set up in 1952 under the UN Security Council
  2. It is mandated to prepare proposals for a treaty for the regulation, limitation, and balanced reduction of all armed forces including the elimination of all weapons of mass destruction.
  3. The observance of Disarmament Week was initiated by the United Nations.
  4. The observance of disarmament week was first suggested in the Final Document of the UN General Assembly’s special session on disarmament in 1978.
  5. October 24 also marks the anniversary of the founding of the United Nations.

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