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Comprehensive News Analysis - 08 November 2016

Table of Contents:

A. GS1 Related:
B. GS2 Related:

1. Linking food and nutrition security

C. GS3 Related:

1. Construction banned near Uttarakhand glaciers

2. Solutions after the smog

D. GS4 Related
E. Important Editorials : A Quick Glance

The Hindu

1. For a breath of fresh air


1. Indian Amphibious Warship INS Shardul enters Port Louis, Mauritius


1. Internet governance: India can begin at home

F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
H. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
I. Archives



Useful News Articles

A. GS1 Related

Nothing here today folks!

B. GS2 Related
  1. Linking food and nutrition security

Category: Social Justice

Topic: Health

Key Points:

  • The euphoria  around  the  National  Food Security  Act  ( NFSA),   2013,   seems  to have  dwindled
  • As per  the  statements by  Minister  of  State  for  Consumer  Affairs,   Food  and  Public  Distribution, Ram  Vilas  Paswan,   the  Act  was  to  be fully  implemented  across  India  by  July 2016
  • As of  now,   only  five  States  have fully  executed  it  as  per  the  provisions  of the  Central  Act  and  the  progress  in other  States  has  been  tardy
  • The front runners  are  Punjab,   Haryana,   Chhattisgarh,   Maharashtra  and     The Act  has  been  partially  implemented  in Bihar,   Delhi,   Himachal  Pradesh  and Karnataka
  • The Act, if fully implemented, is likely to benefit 720 million people through availability of 5 kg per capita per month of subsidised foodgrains ( rice, wheat and coarse cereals) at a much lower rate than that in the open market
  • This would ensure food security and enhance nutritional status
  • The two concepts are interlinked, but nutrition security has a much wider connotation than food security
  • It encompasses a biological approach, that is, adequate and safe intake of protein, energy, vitamin and minerals along with proper health and social environment


C. GS3 Related
  1. Construction banned near Uttarakhand glaciers

Category: Environment

Topic: Climate Change

Key Points:

  • Taking notice of the degradation in the Himalayan ecology and environment, the Uttarakhand High Court has directed the government to take steps to preserve the Hill State’s glaciers
  • Uttarakhand has 968 glaciers
  • In view of the rapidly melting Uttarakhand glaciers, which are a source of major rivers including the Ganga and the Yamuna, the Division Bench comprising Justice Alok Singh and Justice Rajiv Sharma, took cognisance of the rapid reduction in snow cover due to climate change and the melting of glaciers
  • In the Order, the Court directed that no new permanent constructions must come up within a 25 kilometre radius from the “edges” of all the glaciers across the State
  • The court also passed orders restricting the burning of fossil fuels within a 10 kilometre radius of the “edges of glaciers”
  • “The State Government is directed to provide the Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and Kerosene Oil, in abundance, to the people living in these areas to mitigate their hardships by involving Oil Companies,” the Order stated
  • The State government could also impose a cess in the form of “Glacier Tax” on persons visiting places in the vicinity of the glaciers, the Order stated
  • The Court Order also prohibits the use of plastic, in all forms, within a 20 kilometre radius of glaciers
  • Also, the State administration is directed to put up stations 20 kilometres from each glacier to ensure the enforcement of the Court directions
  • However, the Army and the paramilitary forces shall be permitted to set up infrastructures but they too must consider the environment of the area before undertaking constructions of any kind


  1. Solutions after the smog

Category: Environment

Topic: Pollution

Key Points:

  • If Delhi’s  crippling  pollution  crisis  is  to  end,   at least  in  the  coming  years,   the  Centre  and  the States  concerned  need  to  adopt  a  two- pronged approach:              
  • tackle problems created  by  urbanization
  • Every measure  to  curb  the release  of  pollutants  is  important since  the  weather pattern  in  the  post- monsoon  months  causes  smog to  persist
  • The capital  experiences  the  inversion  effect  of  air  pressure  retarding  the  dispersal  of  the foul  cloud
  • There has  to  be  strong  political  will  to implement  a  time- bound  programme  that  will  stop the  burning  of  crop  residues and  put them  to  commercial  use
  • As the  eminent  agriculture  scientist  S.   Swaminathan  has  pointed  out, farmers  are  not  at  fault  for  trying  to  remove  the waste  from  the  land,   and  they  need  help
  • In the northwestern  States,   they  resort  to  burning  straw  to prepare  for  a  wheat  crop  weeks  after  harvesting rice
  • The Indian  Agricultural  Research  Institute published  a  guidance  report  four  years  ago  on  ways to  use  the  residue,   with  an  emphasis  on  converting paddy  straw  into  livestock  feed,   compost,   raw material  for  power  generation,   biofuel  production and  as  substrate  for  mushroom  farming
  • State support  is  vital  for  straw  to  be  used  as  fodder,   and  farmers  should  be  assisted  with  supplemental  stocks  of urea  and  molasses,   green  fodder  and  legume  waste
  • Smoke- generating brick  kilns  around the  national  capital  need  to  be  cleaned  up  through  a state- guided  modernisation  programme,   since  they become  active  during  the  period  when  the  weather is  unhelpful
  • It is  also  important  to  pave  all  roads well to  curb  dust,   and  show  zero  tolerance  to  civic agencies  leaving  exposed  mud  after  executing  projects
  • A more  diffused  problem  is  the  burning  of waste  and  other  materials  by  the  poor  who  do  not have  access  to  cleaner  forms  of  heating  in  the winter  months
  • If that  is  unavoidable  in  the  short term,   it  is  certainly  possible  to  clean  up  the transport  sector
  • Delhi’s bus  fleet  should  be  augmented,   preferably  doubled,   with  modern  high- capacity  zero  emission  electric  vehicles  of  the  kind being  introduced  in  Europe
  • Higher parking  fees for  private  vehicles  can  pay  for  this
  • The capital  —indeed,   all Indian  cities  —   can  achieve  better  efficiencies  if  transport  data  are  opened  up  to  build smartphone  apps  giving  users  real- time  service  information


D. GS4 Related

Nothing here today folks!

E. Important Editorials: A Quick Glance
The Hindu
  1. For a breath of fresh air

Category: Environment/ Governance

Topic: Climate Change/ Policies

Key Points:

  • Three perspectives on adopting a medium- to long- term approach for pollution control
  • First, minor reductions in pollution do not reduce health risks significantly
  • The Global Burden of Disease finds that health impacts of pollution are nonlinear
  • This means that significant declines in adverse health outcomes for Delhi and other polluted Indian cities will only be realised when pollution levels reach National Ambient Air Quality Standards
  • Second, enhance the capacity of the CPCB and the SPCBs
  • Pollution monitoring, regulation and control are complex, technical issues and require trained manpower
  • CPCBs and SPCBs are required to provide scientific inputs needed to drive pollution control policies
  • Third, leverage technology for innovative solutions. It is well understood that trans- boundary sources contribute 20- 30 per cent to Delhi’s pollution
  • Whereas seasonal crop burning in Punjab and Haryana makes headlines, little is made of pollution from industrial clusters in Faridabad and Ghaziabad
  • Yet, we have barely considered developing the business models by which farmers can secure revenue from wasteto- energy projects or providing pollution control technologies to industrial clusters of small and medium enterprises


  1. Indian Amphibious Warship INS Shardul enters Port Louis, Mauritius

Category: International Relations

Topic: India-Maurituis

Key Points:

  • In a demonstration of India’s commitment to its ties with Mauritius and to promote maritime security in the Indian Ocean Region, Indian Naval Ship Shardul has arrived at Port Louis on a three day visit
  • INS Shardul, an amphibious ship of the Indian Navy, is currently on a month long deployment in the Southern Indian Ocean in keeping with the vision of SAGAR – Security and Growth for All in the Region
  • Accordingly, the Indian Navy will be progressing maritime security cooperation with Mauritius National Coast Guard (NCG) towards ensuring a secure and stable regional maritime environment for unhindered economic development in the region
  • INS Shardul’s visit is part of its mission to carry out surveillance in the Mauritius EEZ with NCG personnel embarked onboard


  1. Internet governance: India can begin at home

Category: Governance

Topic: Policies

Key Points:

  • On 5th November, India hosted the ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) 57 meeting in Hyderabad
  • If the Internet has a backbone, ICANN is it
  • From its inception in 1998 until 1 October this year, it was based in and controlled by the US
  • That the first summit after the US ceded control was held in India makes for neat symbolism
  • But if New Delhi wishes India to have a significant say in global Internet governance going forward—a must—it will have to go beyond mere symbolism
  • Current IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad’s unequivocal statement last year about an “Indian vision” for the Internet—one that sees multi-stakeholderism as the only way forward—shows that the government has settled upon a cohesive, sensible approach
  • This is a pragmatic decision given that the proponents of a multilateral approach included China and Russia—and under the circumstances, Washington had made it clear it would not cede control of ICANN to an inter-governmental body
  • The problem, however, is that given India’s track record so far, converting its support for a multi-stakeholder model into an actionable approach that gives it a voice in shaping future outcomes is going to take some doing
  • The first step to redressing the current state of affairs is looking at the domestic policymaking process in Internet-related issues
  • A ‘Centre for Communication Governance’ report,Analysing Indian Engagement at Global Internet Governance Institutions 2011-2015 by Puneeth Nagaraj and Aarti Bhavana notes that the small number of civil society, academic and government representatives who have participated in global governance forums so far have shared concerns regarding accountability, legitimacy, diversity and capacity
  • That’s well and good—except that when it comes to freedom of expression, website blocking, policy issues such as the encryption bill and the geospatial bill, and a multitude of other such issues, successive governments have been unconcerned with the need to engage civil society and technical experts adequately
  • The capabilities and willingness to participate in global governance at the international level will not come into existence in a vacuum
  • They must first be cultivated at the domestic level
  • The future of the Internet is too important to leave to governments alone
F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
  1. Air Pollution
  2. Smog
  3. Internet Governance
  4. India-Mauritius
  5. NFSA



National Food Security Act


H. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
Question 1.Which of the following is/are true regarding Double Tax Avoidance Agreements (DTAA)? 
  1. A DTAA is a tax treaty signed between two or more countries with the objective that tax-payers in these countries can avoid being taxed twice for the same income
  2. Countries with which India has DTAA include Mauritius, Canada and Bangladesh

a) Only 1 b) Only 2 c) Both 1 and 2 d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 2.Which of the following is/are true regarding National Food Security Act ?
a) An Act to provide for food and nutritional security in human life cycle approach b) It seeks to ensure access to adequate quantity of quality food at affordable prices to people c) One of the key components is to provide a life with dignity to the people d) All of the above
Question 3.Which of the following is true?

a) River Satluj originates from Rakas Lake in Tibet b) River Jhelum originates from Gangotri c) River Yamuna originates from Verinag d) Both a and c

Question 4.Which of the following is true regarding  Pollution  according to the Environment Pollution Act, 1986?
  1. “environment” includes water, air and land and the inter- relationship which exists among and between water, air and land, and human beings, other living creatures, plants, micro-organism and property
  2. “environmental pollutant” means any solid, liquid or gaseous substance present in such concentration as may be, or tend to be, injurious to environment;

a) Only 1 b) Only 2 c) Both 1 and 2 d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 5.Which of the following is not true?
  1. Internet of things simply means a thing or any device that can be connected to the internet
  2. The scope of ‘Internet of Things’ comes under the Ministry of Earth Sciences

a) Only 1 b) Only 2 c) Both 1 and 2 d) Neither 1 nor 2

Check Your Answers

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