21 Apr 2024: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

21 April 2024 CNA
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A. GS 1 Related
B. GS 2 Related
1. Why are sugary processed foods harmful?
1. CJI says safeguards in new criminal laws will protect rights of citizens
C. GS 3 Related
1. India chooses to ‘regulate’, not ban, single-use plastic
2. What are the new Green Credit Programme rules?
1. What is the outlook on the global economy?
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
F. Prelims Facts
1. Glycemic index of diets: importance beyond diabetes control
2. Enduring circle of life
G. Tidbits
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions
FIP Magazine

Category: POLITY

1. CJI says safeguards in new criminal laws will protect rights of citizens

Syllabus: Indian Constitution, Features of Indian Constitution and Amendments in Indian Constitution

Mains: Significance of new criminal laws 


  • Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud lauds new criminal laws for safeguarding citizen rights.
  • New laws, including Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita (BNS), Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS), and Bharatiya Sakshya Act (BSA), set to overhaul the criminal justice system from July 1.
  • Emphasis on protecting victim interests and improving efficiency in the investigation and prosecution of offences.

Features of New Laws

  • BNSS replaces the Code of Criminal Procedure and introduces measures like audiovisual recording of search and seizure operations.
  • Presence of forensic expert mandated at crime scenes for offences with more than seven years imprisonment.
  • Audiovisual recording enhances transparency and safeguards civil liberties against procedural impropriety.

Judicial Scrutiny and Privacy Concerns

  • Justice Chandrachud highlights the importance of judicial scrutiny in safeguarding citizen rights during searches and seizures.
  • Concerns were raised regarding privacy and data protection in the digitization of proceedings and the creation of digital evidence.

Government Response

  • Union Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal dismisses allegations of misuse of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to silence the opposition.
  • ED chief Rahul Navin and CBI director Pravin Sood present at the conference in response to allegations.


  • Ensuring effective implementation of new laws and adaptation by law enforcement authorities.
  • Addressing privacy concerns and preventing data leakage in the digitization of criminal proceedings.


  • The transition to new criminal laws signifies a milestone in India’s legal framework, emphasizing victim protection and procedural efficiency.
  • Judicial scrutiny and privacy protections uphold citizen rights and maintain the integrity of the criminal justice system.


  • Training programs for law enforcement officials to ensure a smooth transition to new laws and adherence to procedural standards.
  • Implementation of robust data protection measures to safeguard the privacy rights of both accused and victims.

Nut Graf: Chief Justice Chandrachud’s endorsement of new criminal laws reflects a commitment to upholding citizen rights and improving efficiency in the administration of justice. The transition to the new legal framework signals a step towards a more transparent and equitable criminal justice system.

2. What are the new Green Credit Programme rules?

Syllabus: Conservation, Environmental pollution and degradation

Mains: Significance of new Green Credit Programme rules


  • The Environment Ministry introduces new guidelines for the Green Credit Programme (GCP), emphasizing ecosystem restoration over tree planting.
  • The GCP aims to incentivize voluntary environmental conservation actions through market-based mechanisms.
  • The Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) administers the programme and manages the trading platform for ‘green credits’.

Overview of the Green Credit Programme

  • Originating from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s principle of Mission Life, the GCP promotes sustainability and environmental improvement.
  • Individuals, organizations, and companies can invest in various sectors like afforestation, water conservation, and waste management to earn ‘green credits’.
  • The ICFRE oversees the programme, defining methodologies for calculating green credits and facilitating trading.

Afforestation Initiative

  • Companies and individuals can fund afforestation projects on degraded forest land, with State forest departments responsible for tree planting.
  • Each planted tree, evaluated by the ICFRE after two years, earns one green credit.
  • Forest departments of 13 states have offered nearly 10,983 hectares for afforestation projects, with several public sector companies registering for investment.

Controversies Surrounding GCP

  • Critics argue that GCP commodifies environmental conservation and may circumvent forest conservation laws.
  • Concerns arise regarding the ecological impact of tree planting, the potential promotion of invasive species, and the lack of clarity on carbon trading.

Government’s Response

  • The Ministry issues guidelines for States to calculate the cost of restoring degraded forest landscapes.
  • Flexibility provided in tree density requirements to suit diverse ecosystems, with a preference for indigenous species.
  • The programme is in a pilot phase, with ongoing efforts to quantify the contributions of shrubs and grasses to green credits.
  • Companies can only partially offset their compensatory afforestation obligations using green credits.


  • Potential misuse of green credits to bypass compensatory afforestation requirements.
  • Lack of clarity on ecological impacts and quantification of green credits for diverse ecosystems.


  • The GCP represents a novel approach to incentivizing environmental conservation through market-based mechanisms.
  • Emphasizing ecosystem restoration over tree planting aligns with global trends towards holistic conservation efforts.


  • Strengthening monitoring and evaluation mechanisms to ensure the ecological integrity of afforestation projects.
  • Enhancing stakeholder engagement and transparency in the GCP to address concerns regarding misuse and ecological impact.

Nut Graf: The Green Credit Programme holds promise as an innovative tool for promoting environmental conservation. Addressing controversies and refining implementation mechanisms are crucial for maximizing the programme’s effectiveness in achieving sustainable ecosystem restoration.

Category: ECONOMY

1. What is the outlook on the global economy?

Syllabus: Growth and development

Prelims: IMF

Mains: Challenges to global financial stability


  • The International Monetary Fund (IMF) issues warnings about global financial stability, citing concerns over persistent high inflation, unregulated lending in the private credit market, and cyber-attacks on financial institutions.
  • Rising investor optimism about slowing inflation and potential interest rate cuts by central banks may be premature, according to the IMF’s latest financial stability report.

Risks of Inflation and Interest Rate Expectations

  • Investors anticipate central banks lowering interest rates as inflation eases, leading to increased asset prices.
  • IMF cautions against premature optimism, highlighting stalled inflation in major economies and geopolitical risks affecting supply chains and prices.
  • A sharp correction in asset prices could occur if risks persist, resulting in significant losses for investors.

Impact on Emerging Markets, including India

  • Emerging markets like India have benefited from capital inflows due to expectations of interest rate cuts by central banks.
  • However, if Western central banks maintain high-interest rates, capital outflows from emerging markets may occur, leading to currency depreciation and economic slowdown.
  • The depreciation of the Indian rupee and pressure on the country’s financial system may result from significant capital outflows.

Concerns Over Unregulated Private Credit Market

  • The IMF highlights the growing unregulated private credit market, where non-bank financial institutions lend to corporate borrowers.
  • Concerns arise regarding the financial soundness of borrowers and the lack of transparency in assessing risk, potentially affecting the broader financial system.
  • India experiences a similar trend with the rise of Alternative Investment Funds (AIFs) lending to high-risk borrowers and investing in distressed assets.


  • Central banks and financial regulators should communicate clear and consistent policies to manage inflation and interest rate expectations.
  • Enhanced oversight and transparency measures are needed to monitor and regulate the private credit market, minimizing risks to financial stability.
  • Strengthening cooperation and coordination among global financial institutions can facilitate the timely identification and mitigation of systemic risks.

Nut Graf: The IMF’s warnings underscore the importance of proactive measures to address risks to global financial stability, including inflation, interest rate expectations, and unregulated lending practices. Collaborative efforts between policymakers, central banks, and financial regulators are essential to safeguarding the resilience and integrity of the global financial system.

2. Enduring circle of life

Context: Olive ridley sea turtles play a crucial role in the ecosystem, nesting on beaches and laying eggs before continuing their journey.

  • Conservation efforts are vital to ensure the safety of eggs and hatchlings, with dedicated individuals and organizations working to protect them.

Nesting Season

  • From December to April, the Bay of Bengal coast in Tamil Nadu becomes a sanctuary for olive ridley sea turtles.
  • Turtles lay around 100 eggs per nest, which hatch after 45 to 60 days, with hatchlings ready to enter the sea.

Conservation Efforts in Chennai

  • The Forest Department and NGOs like the Students’ Sea Turtle Conservation Network and TREE Foundation monitor nests.
  • Volunteers and forest guards patrol beaches nightly during nesting season, relocating eggs to temporary hatcheries to protect them.
  • Eggs are counted and monitored, and hatchlings are released into the sea after hatching.

Success of Conservation Efforts

  • Over 12,200 hatchlings released off Chennai coast this year.
  • Tamil Nadu released 1.83 lakh hatchlings during the 2022-23 nesting season, the highest in seven years.
  • Some hatcheries are equipped with weather-monitoring devices to study temperature impact on turtles.


  • Sea turtles face risks in the water, including entanglement in fishing gear.
  • Light pollution from seaside resorts can disorient turtles, affecting their nesting behaviour.

Symbol of Hope

  • Despite challenges, hatchlings represent hope for the continuation of their species.
  • Their journey reflects the enduring cycle of life in the ocean, highlighting the importance of conservation efforts.
Olive ridley sea turtles

Image source: The Hindu

G. Tidbits

Nothing here for today!!!

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. Consider the following statements with respect to the Central Pollution 
Control Board (CPCB):
  1. CPCB is a statutory body under the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change. 
  2. It is responsible for Air and Water Quality Monitoring Services and any other pollution-related issues.

Which of these statements is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: c

Explanation: Both the statements are correct. 

Q2. Consider the following statements with respect to Olive Ridley Turtles:
  1. They are one of the largest sea turtle species.
  2. They are primarily found in the tropical regions of the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic oceans. 
  3. The mouth of Rushikulya River is the location of one of the largest mass nesting sites of olive ridley sea turtles in India.

How many of these statements is/are incorrect?

  1. Only one
  2. Only two
  3. All three
  4. None

Answer: a

Explanation: Statement 1 is incorrect. They are one of the smallest sea turtle species.

Q3. Consider the following statements with respect to the Glycemic Index:
  1. It ranks carbohydrate-containing foods based on the blood glucose response after a meal. 
  2. The lower the blood sugar reading, the higher will be the GI.

Which of these statements is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: a

Explanation: Statement 2 is incorrect. The higher the blood sugar reading, the higher will be the GI.

Q4. Consider the following statements with respect to core inflation:
  1. It is the change in the costs of goods and services including the price variations in seasonal elements, such as those related to food and energy.
  2. Core inflation represents the short-term trend in the price level.

Which of these statements is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: d

Explanation: Both the statements are incorrect. It does not include price variations in seasonal elements. It represents a long-term trend in the price level. 

Q5. India’s Green Credit Programme is managed by:
  1. Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE)
  2. NITI Aayog
  3. Securities and Exchange Board of India
  4. Reserve Bank of India

Answer: a

Explanation: The overall administration of the scheme is under the Indian Council for Forestry Research and Education – an autonomous organisation under the MoEFCC.


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