03 Dec 2020: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

03 Dec 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS 1 Related
B. GS 2 Related
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. ‘India will not accept less than bottom line in talks with China’
2. Isaac issue sent to ethics panel
C. GS 3 Related
ENVIRONMENT AND ECOLOGY
1. Panel formed to oversee India’s Paris climate goals
SECURITY
1. Global alert on vaccine frauds
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
1. A Silent Pandemic
ECONOMY
1. Choppy tidings
POLITY
1. Hard bargains and the art of policymaking
F. Prelims Facts
1. Honey, the sweetener on your plate may be sugar syrup
G. Tidbits
1. China buys first Indian rice in decades amid scarce supply
2. There has never been a woman CJI, says A-G
3. Centre plans professional courses in mother tongue
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

2. Isaac issue sent to ethics panel

Context:

The Speaker of the Kerala Legislative Assembly P. Sreeramakrishnan has referred a breach of privilege notice given by Congress legislator V.D. Satheesan against Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac to the Privileges and Ethics Committee of the Assembly for scrutiny.

Issue:

  • Satheesan had alleged that Dr. Isaac infringed on the rights of the House by disclosing the details of an audit report of the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) for 2018-19 by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), even before it was tabled in the Legislative Assembly.
  • The issue has been referred to a nine-member committee. It has been asked to look into the fundamental issues raised by Dr. Isaac on:
    • The laying of the CAG report in the House.
    • On the breach of privilege committed by the CAG.
  • It is the first time in the history of the House that a breach of privilege notice against a Minister has been referred to the committee for scrutiny.

Details:

  • Ministers assume office after taking the oath that they will not divulge any confidential information that comes to their notice except for official purposes.
  • The Governor has the authority to expel those who violate this oath.
  • The legislature has the right to know the details of the CAG report first. A CAG report has to remain a confidential document till it is tabled in the Legislative Assembly.
  • Violating the rights of the Assembly can attract punishment.

Category: SECURITY

1. Global alert on vaccine frauds

Context:

Interpol has issued a global alert to law enforcement agencies of its 194 member countries, asking them to prepare for the targeting of COVID-19 vaccines, both physically and online, by organised crime networks.

Details:

  • The Interpol Orange Notice outlines potential criminal activity in relation to the falsification, theft and illegal advertising of COVID-19 and flu vaccines, with the pandemic having already triggered unprecedented opportunistic and predatory criminal behaviour.
  • It includes examples of crimes in which individuals were found to be advertising, selling and administering fake vaccines.
  • Stating that vaccines were the prime target of organised crime, it said that as governments are preparing to roll out vaccines, criminal organisations are planning to infiltrate or disrupt supply chains.
  • Interpol also suspects that there would be parallel production and distribution of unauthorised and falsified testing kits.

Way forward:

It is essential that law enforcement is prepared for an onslaught of all types of criminal activity linked to the COVID-19 vaccine.

Read more on Interpol Notices covered in 8th April 2020 Comprehensive News Analysis.

G. Tidbits

1. China buys first Indian rice in decades amid scarce supply

What’s in News?

China has begun importing Indian rice for the first time in at least three decades.

  • The recent development is due to tightening supplies from Thailand, Myanmar and Vietnam and an offer of sharply discounted prices.
  • While India is the world’s biggest rice exporter and China the biggest importer, it has avoided purchases from India, citing quality issues.
  • Indian traders have now contracted to export 100,000 tonnes of broken rice at around $300 per tonne on a free-on-board (FOB) basis.

2. There has never been a woman CJI, says A-G

What’s in News?

Attorney-General’s suggestions on ways to gender-sensitise judges.

  • Pointing out that there has never been a woman chief justice, he told the Supreme Court that more women judges in constitutional courts would certainly improve gender sensitivity in the judiciary.
  • It was also pointed out that there are only 80 women judges out of the sanctioned strength of 1,113 judges in the High Courts and the Supreme Court and that they comprise only 7.2% of the number of judges.
  • He opined that improving the representation of women could also go a long way towards a more balanced and empathetic approach in cases involving sexual violence.

3. Centre plans professional courses in mother tongue

  • The Centre is drafting a road map to ensure that students of medicine, engineering, law and other professional programmes can study in their own mother tongue.
  • The decision was taken by the Education Minister, after a meeting on the implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP).

Read more on National Education Policy (NEP)

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. Consider the following statements with respect to Interpol:
  1. Interpol is a global police co-operation agency and a non-governmental organization (NGO).
  2. It is headquartered at Geneva, Switzerland.
  3. Interpol Orange Notice is issued to locate, identify or obtain information on a person of interest in a criminal investigation.

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

  1. 1 and 2 only
  2. 1, 2 and 3
  3. 2 and 3 only
  4. None of the above
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: c

Explanation:

  • Interpol is a global police co-operation agency and a non-governmental organization (NGO). It was established as the International Criminal Police Commission (ICPC) in 1923.
  • Its headquarters is located at Lyon, France. Interpol Purple Notice is issued to provide information on modus operandi, procedures, objects, devices, or hiding places used by criminals.
  • Orange notice is issued to warn of an event, a person, an object or a process representing an imminent threat and danger to persons or property.
Q2. Consider the following statements:
  1. The governor can pardon the death sentence.
  2. The governor can suspend or remit the death sentence.
  3. The governor can commute the death sentence.

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

  1. 1 only
  2. 1 and 2 only
  3. 2 and 3 only
  4. None of the above
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: a

Explanation:

  • The governor cannot pardon the death sentence and the punishment by court-martial.
  • Governor cannot pardon the death sentence even if the said sentence has been prescribed under the state law.
  • However, he can suspend, remit or commute the death sentence by using these pardoning powers.
Q3. Consider the following statements with respect to Chang’e 5:
  1. Chang’e 5 is a robotic lunar exploration mission consisting of a service module, lunar lander, ascender, and a sample-return vehicle.
  2. It is a mission under the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program.
  3. The mission aims at retrieving samples from the moon.

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

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 1, 2 and 3
  4. None of the above
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: c

Explanation:

All the statements are correct.

Q4. Consider the following statements with respect to NETRA:
  1. It is a real-time network surveillance tool.
  2. It is being developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

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:

  • NETRA (short for Network Traffic Analysis), is being developed by the Center for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR), a unit of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
  • It is a real-time network surveillance tool.

I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

  1. Explain anti-microbial resistance and suggest steps to tackle this public health concern. (10 marks, 150 words) [GS 2, Health]
  2. Explain the role of Parliament in India’s democratic setup. Discuss the concept of ‘decline of parliament’. (15 marks,250 words) [GS 2, Polity & Governance]

Read the previous CNA here.

03 Dec 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here

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