01 Aug 2020: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

1 Aug 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS 1 Related
B. GS 2 Related
EDUCATION
1. KVs unlikely to change medium of instruction
POLITY
1. Is Trump empowered to delay the election?
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. 1947 pact on Gurkha soldiers redundant: Nepal Minister
C. GS 3 Related
ECONOMY
1. Fiscal deficit touches 83% of full-year target
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
ENVIRONMENT AND ECOLOGY
1. Diluting the EIA process spells a path of no return
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. War and talks
F. Prelims Facts
G. Tidbits
1. Indian bid for airport too high: Dhaka
2. Pension for those jailed during Emergency scrapped
3. Forced decoupling will hurt India and China: Chinese envoy
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

Category: POLITY

1. Is Trump empowered to delay the election?

Context:

  • The U.S. President Donald Trump has suggested, the November elections be delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Trump has displayed resistance for mail-in voting, making claims of a rigged election. He has implied that mail-in voting would allow election fraud to occur on a more widespread scale across the US, without offering any evidence.

Does the President of the U.S. have the powers to do so?

  • According to the U.S. Constitution, it is Congress, not the President, that decides the timing of the elections.
  • A federal law approved on January 25, 1845, has unambiguously set the election timing.
  • It can only be changed by passing a new law. Such law would need the approval of both the House of Representatives and the Senate, and would be subject to legal challenges.
  • Senior leaders have dismissed Mr. Trump’s suggestion to postpone the election.

What’s next?

  • President Trump’s first term is set to expire at noon on January 20, 2021.
  • The 20th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution moved the beginning and ending of the terms of the President and the Vice-President from March 4 to January 20. These dates cannot be changed.
  • Ordinarily, if the presidency is vacant, the Vice-President assumes charge.
    • But here, the terms of both President Trump and the Vice-President will expire on January 20.
  • The House Speaker is the next in the line of succession.
    • But the two-year term of the current House expires on January 3, 2021. So, Speaker cannot assume the presidency.
  • The next in line is the ‘president pro tempore’ of the Senate, largely a ceremonial position.
  • According to Article 1, Section Three of the Constitution, the Vice-President is the president of the Senate, and the Senate should choose a president pro tem to act in the absence of the Vice-President.
  • If elections are not held in November (for 23 Republican Senate seats and 12 Democrat seats), the current equation of the Senate would change.
  • The Democrats would have a majority and they could elect a new president pro tem.

Read more about Presidential Elections in India.

Note:

A presidential election has not been delayed ever in the 244-year history of the institution – not even during the Spanish Flu outbreak of 1918, or the American Civil War (1861 – 1865), or World War II.

Category: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

1. 1947 pact on Gurkha soldiers redundant: Nepal Minister

Context:

Foreign Minister of Nepal has said that the 1947 agreement among India, Nepal and the United Kingdom that deals with the military service of Gurkha soldiers has become redundant.

Background:

  • Impressed by the discipline and ferocity of the Gurkha soldiers, following the Anglo-Nepalese War of 1814-16, the British decided to recruit Gurkha soldiers in 1815.
  • Ever since, the Gurkhas have fought on the side of the British Empire in almost every war, including both World Wars.
    • The Gurkhas are recruited every year at the British Gurkha camp at Pokhara in Nepal.
  • After India’s Independence in 1947, the question of allotting the 10 regiments of Gurkha soldiers was settled by the Britain-India-Nepal Tripartite Agreement.
  • In 1948, the 11th Gurkha Rifles regiment was created in India in order to accommodate the Gurkhas who refused to depart with the now-British regiments.

Details:

  • Nepal has proposed to the UK to review the 73-year-old tripartite agreement with India and Britain over the recruitment and deployment of Gurkha soldiers and their perks and facilities.
    • Gurkha veterans have been alleging that the U.K. has been discriminating against them.
  • A possible bilateral arrangement with India regarding the Gurkha soldiers has been indicated by the minister.

2. Pension for those jailed during Emergency scrapped

What’s in News?

The Maharashtra Government has decided to discontinue the pension provided to those detained under the National Emergency under the provisions of the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA).

  • The scheme was launched in July 2018 under which over 3,000 beneficiaries were to get ₹10,000 per month under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) pension scheme.

Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA):

  • MISA came into force in 1971 when Indira Gandhi was Prime Minister and it gave the government and law enforcement agencies the right to detain certain individuals in order to maintain internal security.
  • Under this act, a person could be detained for a maximum period of 12 months.
  • In the same decade, Gandhi declared a national emergency (1975-1977), under which, journalists, scholars and activists, among others, were detained without trial.

3. Forced decoupling will hurt India and China: Chinese envoy

What’s in News?

As India reassesses its trade relations with China and considers a range of moves to reduce dependencies, China has called for equal treatment for its firms.

  • The Chinese envoy has said that forced decoupling between the two economies is harmful to both.
  • He cited the statistics from 2018-19 showing that “92% of Indian computers, 82% of TVs, 80% of optical fibre, 85% of motorcycle components are imported from China.”
  • He asserted that various such examples are the reflection of globalisation and that the trend is difficult to reverse.

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. Consider the following statements with respect to the President of India:
  1. The President of India is elected for 5 years, is eligible for immediate re-election and can serve for two terms.
  2. The process of impeachment of the President can begin in either the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha.
  3. The President can resign from his office at any time by addressing the resignation letter to the Lok Sabha.

Which of the given statement/s is/are incorrect?

  1. 2 only
  2. 1 and 2 only
  3. 1 and 3 only
  4. 1, 2 and 3
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: c

Explanation:

  • There is no limit on how many times a presidential candidate can contest elections and serve as the President of India. He can be elected for 5 years, is eligible for immediate re-election and can serve for any number of terms.
  • The process of impeachment of the President can begin in either the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha.
  • The President can resign from his office at any time by addressing the resignation letter to the Vice President.
Q2. Mullaperiyar Dam dispute is between which of the following states?
  1. Karnataka
  2. Kerala
  3. Tamil Nadu
  4. Andhra Pradesh

Choose the correct option:

  1. 1, 2 and 3 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1, 3 and 4 only
  4. 1 and 3 only
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: b

Explanation:

  • The Mullaperiyar Dam is a masonry gravity dam on the Periyar River in the Indian state of Kerala.
  • The dam is located in Kerala on the river Periyar, but is operated and maintained by Tamil Nadu state.
  • The dispute between Kerala and Tamil Nadu states is because of the control and safety of the dam and the validity and fairness of the lease agreement. The dispute began in 1998 when Tamil Nadu wanted to raise the height of the water level and Kerala opposed it.
Q3. Arrange the following core sectors in the ascending order of their respective weights 
in the Index of Industrial Production:
  1. Steel
  2. Natural Gas
  3. Coal
  4. Crude Oil
  5. Cement

Choose the correct option:

  1. 5, 2, 4, 3, 1
  2. 5, 4, 2, 1, 3
  3. 3, 5, 2, 4, 1
  4. 2, 3, 4, 3, 1
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: a

Explanation:

Weight of Core Sectors in Index of Industrial Production (IIP): Cement<Natural Gas<Crude Oil<Coal<Steel.

Read more about the Index of Industrial Production (IIP).

Q4. Consider the following statements:
  1. La Nina occurs because of the cooling of the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean.
  2. It causes greater than normal monsoons in India and Southeast Asia.

Which of the given statement/s is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: c

Explanation:

La Nina is a climate pattern that describes the cooling of surface ocean waters along the tropical west coast of South America. La Nina is considered to be the counterpart to El Nino, which is characterized by unusually warm ocean temperatures in the equatorial region of the Pacific Ocean. La Nina occurs because of the cooling of the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean. It causes greater than normal monsoons in India and Southeast Asia.

I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

  1. Achieving lasting peace in Afghanistan will require patience and compromise among all parties. In light of this statement, discuss the challenges involved in the Afghan peace process. (15 Marks, 250 Words).
  2. Outline the evolution of Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) in India and critically examine the draft Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) notification 2020. (15 Marks, 250 Words).

Read the previous CNA here.

1 Aug 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here

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