Comprehensive News Analysis - 21 April 2016

Table of Contents:

A. GS1 Related:

1. Indian Navy to grant permanent commission to women

B. GS2 Related:

1. Even President’s decision can go terribly wrong, says HC

2. PMLA court directs ED to arrest Mallya

3. Three-judge SC Bench to decide on remission in Rajiv case

4. Special significance for ties with India: China

5. Modi to honour bureaucrats for implementing schemes

6. India ranked 133 in World Press Freedom Index

C. GS3 Related:

1. Govt. targets to add 41 km of highways per day in 2016-17

2. Solar Capacity addition at 150 % of target

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

The Hindu:

1. Hotter, longer, deadlier summers

The Indian Express:

1. Withdrawing the lifeline

Others:

1. The Economic Times: Koh-i-noor, Yet So Far

2. The Business Standard: Preparedness for quakes

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

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Useful News Articles

A. GS1 Related

1. Indian Navy to grant permanent commission to women

Topic: Society

Category: Gender issues

Location: The Indian Express

Key points:

  • The Indian Navy announced that women completing seven years in the service will get permanent commission
  • Navy is the last of the three armed forces in the country to allow permanent commission to women

Tags: Indian Navy

 

B. GS2 Related

1. Even President’s decision can go terribly wrong, says HC

Topic: Polity

Category: Federal System

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • Uttarakhand Crisis: the division bench of Nainital HC said that “The power of judicial review is with courts. It cannot be with the President”
  • It also said the President could be an excellent person “but he can go terribly wrong.” Similarly, judges were also open to judicial review

Tags: Uttarakhand Crisis, Judicial Review

 

2. PMLA court directs ED to arrest Mallya

Topic: Polity

Category: the Executive

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • PMLA court has given its ruling on the FIR registered by the CBI against Mr. Mallya and other unknown officials of the Mumbai-based IDBI for causing a loss of Rs. 900 crore to the public sector bank
  • The Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court on Wednesday directed the Enforcement Directorate to execute the non-bailable warrant (NBW) against businessman Vijay Mallya

Tags: CBI, PMLA,ED

 

3. Three-judge SC Bench to decide on remission in Rajiv case

Topic: Polity

Category: Judiciary

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • A three-judge Bench of the Supreme Court will soon decide whether the seven life-term convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case deserve to be released after spending 23 years behind bars
  • The development comes just four months after a Constitution Bench interpreted the law(CrPC) to hold that States cannot unilaterally remit the sentences of life convicts in a case investigated by the CBI without permission from the Centre
  • Interpreting Section 435 of the Criminal Procedure Code dealing with remissions of life convicts, the majority judgment of the Constitution Bench said the word “consultation” in the provision actually meant “concurrence.”

Tags: SC, Power of remission

 

4. Special significance for ties with India: China

Topic: International Relations

Category: India- China Relations

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • NSA’s visit to China :stressed on need for dialogue; clarification of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) is on the agenda ; Concerns to be shared
  • Economic concern:India is interested in China providing greater market access to items where it has a comparative advantage such as pharmaceuticals and Information Technology (IT) products
  • Security concern: Infrastructure in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), which is the expected fallout of the development of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC),Gwadar Port,the quad dialogue on Afghanistan, which excludes India and Russia, but includes China, Pakistan, the United States and Afghanistan

Tags: LAC, PoK, CPEC, Gwadar Port

 

5. Modi to honour bureaucrats for implementing schemes

Topic: Polity

Category: Executive

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • Awards would be given out to a dozen or so district magistrates from across the country on Civil Services Day on21st April
  • Anantnag in Jammu and Kashmir which has seen 100% implementation of the SwachchVidyalaya scheme (construction of toilets in schools) andAzamgarh which registered maximum enrolment in the Jan DhanYojana figure in the awards list
  • West Sikkim, where there has been total elimination of open defecation, Balrampur in Chhattisgarh, and Hamirpur in Himachal Pradesh for the soil card scheme for farmers, Anantpur in Andhra Pradesh, again for SwachchVidyalaya, Churu in Rajasthan for SwachchGrameen (clean village) campaign are also part of this list

Tags: Civil Services Day

 

6. India ranked 133 in World Press Freedom Index

Topic: Polity

Category: Freedom of Expression- Press

Location: The Hindustan Times

Key points:

  • India ranks abysmally low at 133 among 180 countries, in the latest annual World Press Freedom Index
  • The 2016 ‘World Press Freedom Index’ released by Reporters Without Borders (RSF), is led by Finland
  • India jumped three spots from the 136th position it had in 2015.Among India’s neighbouring countries, Pakistan ranks 147, Sri Lanka (141), Afghanistan (120), Bangladesh (144), Nepal (105) and Bhutan (94). China is ranked 176

Tags:World Press Freedom Index, Reporters Without Borders (RSF)

 

 

C. GS3 Related

1. Govt. targets to add 41 km of highways per day in 2016-17

Topic: Economy

Category: Road Transport

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • The government has set an ambitious target of constructing 41 km of national highways every day in 2016-17, up from more than 16 km per day of highways it built in 2015-16.It has set a target of constructing 15,000 km of national highways in 2016-17 as against 6,000 km built last year
  • The Road Transport and Highways Ministry will award contracts for 25,000 km national highway projects, two-and-a-half times more than the projects it had sanctioned in the previous year
  • It also said that the construction of roads quickened by 36 per cent in 2015-16, due to several policy interventions like more project approvals, enhanced inter-ministerial coordination, exit policy for developers, promoting the Hybrid Annuity Model, amendments to the Model Concession Agreement (MCA) for Build-Own-Transfer projects, among others

Tags: Road Transport and Highways Ministry, Hybrid Annuity Model, the Model Concession Agreement (MCA)

Note:Hybrid Annuity Model:Under this model, the government will provide 40 per cent of the project cost to the developer to start work while the remaining investment has to be made by the developer

MCA for annuity projects: investment made by the developer is recovered through annuity payments to be made by the government/Authority over a specified period commencing from the date of commissioning of the project,the balance percentage of the project cost is provided by the government during the construction period

 

2. Solar Capacity addition at 150 % of target

Topic: Economy

Category: Energy-Renewables

Location: The Financial Express

Key points:

  • India added nearly 3,019 MW of grid-connected solar power generation capacity in 2015-16, against a target of 2,000 MW and 2.7 times of 1,112 MW in the previous fiscal
  • The country’s total solar power generation capacity stood at 6,763 MW as on March 31. Further, India has set a target of achieving 100 GW of solar power capacity by 2022
  • Grid connected clean energy added:6937 MW,wind power-3300MW,biogas projecrs-400 MW,hydro projects-219 MW,total renewable power capacity-42,728MW

 

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

The Hindu

1. Hotter, longer, deadlier summers

Topic: Climate Change

Category: Governmental Intervention

Key points:

  • Increasing temperatures are a cause of worry – Adversely health impact is the most serious among them(there are also  higher risks of crop failure leading to farmer financial distress, poverty traps and, in extreme cases, suicides)
  • Adverse health outcomes (hospitalisations or death) are due to a complex interaction of frequency, duration and intensity of a heatwave and population-level factors ( how adapted you are to a temperature profile of certain geography, poverty, lack of shelter, pre-existing disease, age (children or elderly) and access to health facilities)
  • In addition to heat stroke, extreme temperatures can exacerbate pre-existing cardiovascular and respiratory illness
  • Studies have found that over the next three decades, India may experience increase in annual mean air temperatures of 1°C-1.5°C and substantial increases in night-time temperatures
  • Higher night-time temperatures are correlated with increased incidence of heat-related illness
  • hotter summers make it extremely unsafe for citizens, especially labourers, to undertake heavy outdoor work
  • As climate change gathers pace, policy intervention is required across three sectors — health, water and power
  • First, scale up heat-health warning systems (HHWS). At their core, such warning systems include providing weather forecasts in advance, issuing warnings to people, providing readiness of emergency response systems, and preparing doctors and health facilities to handle a sudden influx of patients.
  • Second, expedite the rollout of the National Action Plan on Climate Change and Health that was launched last year. Preventing temperature-related morbidity and mortality could be a key programme under this mission
  • Third, ensure an adequate supply of water. Dehydration is a key outcome of heat exposure which can cascade into life-threatening conditions and ultimately death. Timely access to drinking water can help mitigate this escalation.
  • Fourth, provide reliable electricity for adequate duration. Access to cool environments remains the mainstay of preventing heat stress. Use of fans, air conditioners or functioning of medical centres is contingent upon electricity supply
  • Also, many communities depend on electricity to draw groundwater for drinking. This requires planning to meet peak loads in summer, when power outages are most common
  • In rural areas, where electricity access is a challenge, supplementing power supply of primary health centres with solar-based systems should be undertaken

Tags:National Action Plan on Climate Change and Health, Heat stroke, HHWS

 

Indian Express:

1. Withdrawing the lifeline

Topic: Governance

Category: social sector schemes

Key Points:

  • The unprecedented early drought that is already affecting at least 10 states
  • for at least 300 million rural people, in one-third of the gram panchayats in the country, the situation is really dire
  • Shortage of essential drinking water is only one of many problems; the water scarcity has also affected crops and fodder for animals, and has cut down on both farmers’ livelihood and wage incomes of rural labourers
  • In drought situations, public works programmes become not just desirable but absolutely necessary, simply to provide a minimum lifeline to people living in these areas and also to keep the rural economy going
  • we already have the MGNREGA, now a decade old, which should provide an automatic buffer in such situations
  • It is designed to be demand-driven, which means that the government must provide work within 15 days of it being demanded
  • if this programme were functioning properly, the increased demand for work driven by drought conditions would be met by an increase in public works programmes that would provide work at minimum wages
  • But spending on the programme was down to only 0.26 per cent of the GDP in 2015-16, compared to 0.6 per cent at its peak, and it provided only around 30 days of employment on average, instead of the promised 100 days
  • This was not because of lack of demand — rather, the Central government did not pass on money to state governments that were asking for it, leading to huge unpaid dues of Rs 12,590 crore.
  • Pressure from the Supreme Court has finally forced the Centre to release this amount after much delay, but this still does not provide any funds for the new spending that is more required than ever
  • the decision to allow 150 days of work rather than 100 in the drought affected states has not been implemented
  • delays in wage payments continue. Workers in many states will now be paid for work done in the previous financial year, several months later
  • Urgent action is required
  • Tags: MGNREGA

 

Others:

1. TheEconomic Times: Koh-i-noor, Yet So Far

Topic: History

Category: Medieval History

Key Points

  • the Supreme Court asked whether the government was going to ask for the Koh-i-noor to be returned
  • Centre’s response to the Supreme Court: “It was given voluntarily by Ranjit Singh to the British as compensation for help in the Sikh Wars. The Koh-i-Noor is not a stolen object
  • The government said that the Antiquities and Art Treasure Act, 1972 prevents the government from bringing back antiques removed from the country before Independence
  • The diamond was first mentioned in 1306 as belonging to the Rajas of Malwa
  • In 1839, Maharaja Ranjit Singh died and left it to his sons. Following Singh’s death, his three older sons were killed, and five-year-old Duleep Singh took the throne in 1843. In 1849, the British won the Second Anglo-Sikh War and annexed Punjab under the Treaty of Lahore
  • According to Article III of the treaty: “The gem called the Koh-i-Noor, which was taken from Shah Sooja-ool-moolk by Maharajah Runjeet Singh, shall be surrendered by the Maharajah of Lahore (Duleep Singh) to the Queen of England
  • Queen Victoria in her Will stated that the Koh-i-noor will only be worn by a female monarch. The diamond was then added to her successor’s crown and kept in the Tower of London

Tags: Kohinoor, Anglo-Sikh Wars, Treaty of Lahore

 

2. The Business Standard: Preparedness for quakes

Topic: Disaster Management

Category: Earthquakes-Preparedness

Key Points

  • the first half of April has seen at least eight major earthquakes, two of which have been on the periphery of India — in northeast Afghanistan and Myanmar
  • An earthquake with an intensity of 7.6 on the Richter scale in Jammu and Kashmir and adjoining areas in October 2005 had led to 85,000 deaths besides other economic losses
  • Nearly 59 per cent of India is perpetually prone to earthquakes. Vast stretches of the Northeast, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, and Gujarat are in the seismically most active Zone V
  • The bulk of the northern plains, including the national capital of Delhi, are in the next most dangerous area — Zone IV
  • the home ministry’s National Institute of Disaster Management (NIDM) has warned that an earthquake of more than 8.2 is due any time in the Himalayan region where any resultant landslides could multiply the damage manifold
  • The geological stress in the Northeast’s hills, due partly to frequent tremor-driven weakening of the Himalayas, and the colliding of the Himalayan plate with the Indo-Burmese plate, has put the entire region on high alert
  • seismologists feel that the tectonic plates west of the epicentre of the recent Nepal earthquake are still locked, indicating that another trigger is about to go off
  • Two significant points about earthquakes need to be borne in mind
    1. earthquakes can neither be predicted precisely – in terms of timing and scale – nor prevented
    2. quakes do not kill people; collapsing buildings do
  • Continuous preparedness is thus the only way to keep the tremors damage to the minimum
  • The Bureau of Indian Standards has put together a large number of building codes-but awareness about those are minimum and implementation scarce
  • Solution: The key to tremor-resistant buildings is strong foundation and construction based on interlocked concrete pillars. Researchers have come out with numerous cost-effective designs and construction materials, such as concrete or mud houses reinforced with bamboo, for building houses for the poor
  • These need to be promoted in risk-prone areas to safeguard precious lives, property and vital infrastructure during earthquakes.

Tags: Earthquake prone zones, Richter scale, BIS

 

F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
  • Women in armed forces
  • PMLA
  • ED
  • Richter Scale
  • Kohinoor
  • Heat Stroke
G. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
Question 1: Which of the following statements are true?
  1. State Finance Commissions deal with devolution of state finances to local bodies
    2. They are constituted for a 5 year tenure

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 2:Which of the following statements is true?

1)Afghanistan is a land locked country

2)Afghanistan shares borders with China, Pakistan and Iran

a) 1 only

b)2 only

c)Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 3:Which of the following countries are party to RCEP(Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership)agreement?

1) China

2) Australia

3) Pakistan

4) Japan

a)1 ,2 and 3

b)1 and 4

c)1,2 and 4

d)2,3 and 4

Question 4: Which of the given below statements is/are true?

1. The G20 was initialized for economic cooperation

2. The G7 is a political forum

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Question 5:Which of the following statements are true ?
  1. IPv6 was introduced to handle the address requirements for the devices being added to the internet
    2. The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) manages the IP address space allocations

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

 

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