Table of Contents:
A. GS1 Related:
B. GS2 Related:
C. GS3 Related:
D. GS4 Related:
Useful News Articles for UPSC Current Affairs
A. GS1 Related
Category: SOCIAL ISSUES
What’s in news?
- Highlights of report “A Community – based Prevalence Study of Mental Health Issues in Kashmir”,conducted by Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience, Kashmir.
- 11.3% of the adult population in the Valley suffers from mental illness because of the ongoing conflict, with higher prevalence among women. This is significantly higher than the national average of 7.3%.
- Prevalence of mental health disorder was more in females at 12.9% than males at 8.4%
- Prevalence of Mental Health Disorder is higher among the poor than those who are better off.
B. GS2 Related
Category: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
What’s in news?
- The Union Cabinet has approved MoU between India and Bangladesh for fairway development of Ashuganj-Zakiganj stretch of Kushiyara river and Sirajganj-Daikhawa stretch of Jamuna river in the Indo-Bangladesh protocol route by undertaking necessary dredging jointly by the two countries.
Benefits of this MoU
- The MoU will considerably reduce the logistics cost of cargo movement to North Eastern India. It will also reduce the congestion through the Siliguri Chicken’s Neck corridor.
- The Kushiyara River is a distributary river in Bangladesh and Assam, India. It forms on the India–Bangladesh border as a branch of the Barak River, when the Barak separates into the Kushiyara and Surma. The waters of the Kushiyara thus originate in the state of Nagaland in India and pick up tributaries from Manipur, Mizoram and Assam. The Kushiyara rejoins with the Surma at Markuli in Ajmiriganj upazila and flows south upto Bhairab Bazar receiving the name Kalni. The Kalni meets with the Dhanu, a branch of the Surma and renamed as the meghna.
- The Jamuna River is the main distributary channel of the Brahmaputra River as it flows from India to Bangladesh. The Jamuna flows south and joins the Padma River, near Goalundo Ghat, before meeting the Meghna River near Chandpur. It then flows into the Bay of Bengal as the Meghna River.
What’s in news?
The Union Cabinet has approved the agreement on Audio Visual Co-Production India and Bangladesh.
Salient features of the Agreement:
- The Agreement would cover co-production of films, documentaries, and animations films.
- An audio-visual co-production made in accordance with the proposed Agreement shall be entitled to all the benefits which may be accorded to any national audio-visual work by both countries in accordance with their respective laws and regulations.
- It will lead to exchange of art and culture among the two countries and create goodwill and better understanding among the peoples of both the countries.
- Co-productions provide an opportunity to create and showcase our soft power.
- It leads to generation of employment among artistic, technical as well as non-technical personnel engaged in the arena of Audio-Visual Co- production including post-production and its marketing, thus adding to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of both the countries.
- The utilization of Indian locales for shooting raises the visibility / prospect of India as a preferred film shooting destination across the globe.
- India has so far entered into audio-visual co-production agreements with Italy, United Kingdom, Germany, Brazil, France, New Zealand, Poland, Spain, Canada, China and the Republic of Korea.
What’s in news?
- Thailand’s new king has signed an army-drafted constitution that sets the country on the path to elections while cementing the grip of the military over any future government.
- The constitution is the nation’s 20th since the absolute monarchy was abolished in 1932.
Key features of the new constitution:
- The new charter introduces a different electoral system, a modified proportional method of choosing the 500 members of the lower house of parliament in which people vote for one of 350 constituency candidates; those votes are totalled to determine which of the remaining 150 party list seats go to which party. Under the previous system voters cast two ballots, one for the candidate and one for the party.
- Along with weaker governments, the constitution stipulates that an unelected, 250-seat upper house, or senate, will wield significant influence in the years following the election, currently expected at the end of 2018.
- Membership of the senate will be essentially determined by the military, giving the generals enormous sway over future governments, which would need three quarters of the seats in the lower house to have a majority in both houses.
- Elected governments will also be bound in this constitution to follow the military’s 20-year blueprint for Thailand, and it will be easier for the “independent” bodies, like the Constitutional Court, which will have enhanced powers, to constrain those governments even further.
C. GS3 Related
What’s in news?
- Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi recently laid the foundation stone of the multi-modal terminal at Sahibganj, Jharkhand.
- The terminal at Sahibganj is an important component of the Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP) for the augmentation of the navigation capacity of National Waterway-1 (Ganga) from Varanasi to Haldia (1390 km).
- A Roll-on Roll-off (Ro-Ro) terminal at Sahibganj will provide critical connectivity to Bihar at Manihari for the cross –river movement of loaded and empty trucks. This will considerably reduce the cost and time of cargo movement between Sahibganj and Manihari.
- The state of the art terminal at Sahibganj will have cargo handling capacity of 2.24 Million Tons Per Annum (MTPA) on completion in 2019. The overall cost of the Sahibgang terminal is estimated to be Rs 467 Crore.
- The construction of multi-modal terminal and Ro-Ro terminal will help create substantial direct and indirect employment in Sahibganj and Jharkhand. Overall additional employment opportunities for 1.5 lakh persons are expected to be generated under the Jal Marg Vikas Project on Ganga river.
Benefits for Jharkhand:
- The Sahibganj Multi Modal Terminal will link the city and the landlocked state of Jharkhand to foreign shores through the Bay of Bengal.
- The terminal will generate considerable direct and indirect employment for local people also.
- Jharkhand is richly endowed with mineral resources. The multi-modal terminal at Sahibganj will play an important role in transportation of domestic coal from the local mines (in Rajmahal area) to various thermal power plants located along NW-1.
- Sahibganj terminal is the second multi-modal terminal (out of the three) to be constructed on NW-1. In May 2016, IWAI had awarded the contract for the construction of a multi-modal terminal at Varanasi. The third terminal will be constructed at Haldia in West Bengal where the work is expected to commence soon. River Ganga is being developed under the Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP) with the technical and financial assistance of World Bank at an estimated cost of Rs. 5369 crore. The project would enable commercial navigation of vessels with capacity of 1500-2,000 DWT.
- NW 1: Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly river system from Allahabad to Haldia was declared as National Waterway No.1. The NW-1 passes through Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal and serves major cities and their industrial hinterlands.
Category: INTERNAL SECURITY
What’s in news?
- The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved the proposal of the Ministry of Home Affairs for extension of the implementation phase of the Crime and Criminals Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) Project for another year beyond 31st March 2017.
- The extension would help in achieving the remaining objectives of the project comprehensively.
Impact of the CCTNS Project will lead to:
- Citizen portals in all states and Centre that will facilitate transparency and speed in police service delivery, online registration of complaints and reporting and search of missing persons and stolen goods in self-service mode.
- Pan-India search on complete National Crime and Criminal database that is accessible to the Investigating Officers throughout the country.
- Search facility will be available to Police in regional languages for improved inter-state tracking of criminal movement.
- Reliable network connectivity to all Police Stations in the country.
- National level crime analytics that will be published at, increased frequency to help policy and law makers in taking data backed timely actions and in making appropriate policy interventions.
- Integration with various e-Governance projects such as Aadhaar, National Population Register, Vaahan Project of the Ministry of Surface Transport, Passport Seva and National Emergency Response System Project thus increasing the synergies and benefit accrued from these individual systems. It will expedite various kinds of police verification requests and investigation.
- Advanced features such as biometric based identification, trend and pattern analytics etc. that will be incorporated to enhance hi-tech investigation capability.
What is CCTNS project?
- Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) is a project initiated in June 2009 which aims at creating a comprehensive and integrated system for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of policing at the Police Station level.
- This will be done through adoption of principles of e-Governance, and creation of a nationwide networked infrastructure for evolution of IT-enabled state-of-the-art tracking system around “investigation of crime and detection of criminals”.
- CCTNS is a Mission Mode Project (MMP) under the National e-Governance Plan of Govt. of India.
What it does?
- The Project will interconnect about 15000 Police Stations and additional 5000 offices of supervisory police officers across the country and digitize data related to FIR registration, investigation and charge sheets in all Police Stations.
- It will not only automate Police functions at Police station and higher levels but will also create facilities and mechanism to provide public services like registration of online complaints, ascertaining the status of case registered at the police station, verification of persons etc.
- In 2015, an additional objective of establishing a basic platform for an Inter-operable Criminal Justice System (ICJS) was added to the Project.
- The Full implementation of the Project with all the new components would lead to a Central citizen portal having linkages with State level citizen portals that will provide a number of citizen friendly services like Police Verification for various purposes including passport verification, reporting a crime including cyber-crime and online tracking of the case progress etc.
- The project will enable National level crime analytics to be published at increased frequency, which will help the policy makers as well as lawmakers in taking appropriate and timely action, it will also enable Pan-India criminal/accused name search in the regional language for improved inter-state tracking of criminal movement.
- This would lead to development of a national database of crimes and criminals.
D. GS4 Related
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G. Practice Questions for UPSC Prelims Exam:)
Question 1: Consider the following statements about Public interest litigation (PIL):
- A PIL may be introduced in a court of law by the court itself (suo motu)
- A PIL can be introduced only by the aggrieved party.
Which of the above statements is/are correct ?
- 1 only
- 2 only
- Both 1 and 2
Question 2: Consider the statements about Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW):
- It is an intergovernmental organization based in The Hague, Netherlands.
- The organisation was awarded the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.
Which of the above statements is/are incorrect ?
- 1 only
- 2 only
- Both 1 and 2
Question 3: Consider the following rivers:
Which of the above are tributaries of Brahmaputra?
- 1, 2 and 3
- 2, 3 and 4
- 1, 2 and 4
- 2 and 3 only
Question 4: Consider the following statement:
- The objective of the National Food Security Mission is to increase production of rice, wheat and pulses only
- Production of horticulture crops have outpaced the production of food-grains consistently since 2012-13
Which of the statements above is/are correct?
- 1 Only
- 2 Only
- Both 1 and 2
- Neither 1 nor 2
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