CNA 04 Feb 2023:- Download PDF Here
TABLE OF CONTENTS
A. GS 1 Related B. GS 2 Related GOVERNANCE 1. Rural Tourism POLITY 1. Supreme Court on Terminally Ill Patients C. GS 3 Related D. GS 4 Related E. Editorials INDIAN ECONOMY 1. Going green INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS 1. Little to celebrate in Sri Lanka at 75 POLITY AND GOVERNANCE 1. Charge sheet scrutiny is not a case of prying eyes F. Prelims Facts 1. PM-KUSUM G. Tidbits 1. Tihar jail to get AI-powered surveillance system 2. Antonov-32 (AN-32) H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions
A. GS 1 Related
Nothing here for today!!!
B. GS 2 Related
Syllabus: Government Policies & Interventions for Development
Mains: Rural tourism as a means of community empowerment and poverty alleviation
Context: India to showcase success in rural and archaeological tourism at G-20 meeting.
- Rural tourism and archaeological tourism will be the topics at the first tourism ministerial meeting of the G-20 at Rann of Kutch, Gujarat.
- India is expected to highlight the most successful and innovative initiatives of rural and archaeological tourism from various parts of India.
- The Ladpura Khas village of Madhya Pradesh, Khonoma village of Nagaland and heritage sites like Dholavira will be showcased as success stories of rural and archaeological tourism by India during the meeting.
- The Ladpura Khas village of Madhya Pradesh was nominated as the Best Rural Tourism Village by the UNWTO.
- In this village, the State government developed homestays in villages under the Responsible Tourism Mission of the State.
- Nagaland’s Khonoma Village will present the model of the Ecotourism Management Board that develops rural tourism products and promotes responsible travel.
- India will also present the innovative model of community-based Astro Tourism that involves rural homestays and community spaces that are completely run by villagers and provides travellers with an integrated experience of stargazing along with cultural immersion in the Himalayas.
- The success of developing many rural tourism products in and around Rann of Kutch will also be presented in the meeting.
Tourism Working Group (TWG):
- As part of India’s G20 presidency, Gujarat is hosting the first Tourism Working Group (TWG) meeting in Rann of Kutch from 7 to 9 February.
- In G20, there are 5 interrelated priority areas for tourism. Accordingly, the thrust will be on these five priority areas i.e. greening of the tourism sector, harnessing the power of digitisation, empowering youth with skills, nurturing tourism MSMEs/startups and rethinking the strategic management of destinations.
- One of the priorities through the G20 platform is to reach a consensus on how the Sustainable Development Goals will be achieved by 2030 with an emphasis on sustainable tourism which is significant for the environment and also to create opportunities for local enterprise.
- India is also planning on live demonstrations of the local arts and handicrafts before the delegates and also to give farewell gifts to the delegates under the One District One Product initiative.
- Rural Tourism is any form of tourism that showcases the rural life, art, culture, and heritage at rural locations, thereby benefiting the local community economically and socially.
- Numerous local traditions like plays, art forms, dances, etc. enhance the cultural wealth of rural areas, making these attractive to tourists.
- The Ministry of Tourism has designated rural tourism as one of the niche tourism sectors for growth in the country. The Ministry has developed a Draft National Strategy and Roadmap for Rural Tourism, which focuses on developing and promoting local products through tourism.
- It focuses on the following key pillars: (a) Model policies and best practices for rural tourism; (b) Digital technologies and platforms for rural tourism; (c) Developing clusters for rural tourism; (d) Marketing support for rural tourism; (e) Capacity building of stakeholders; (f) Governance and institutional framework.
- The Ministry of Tourism has designated the Rural Circuit as one of the fifteen thematic circuits for development under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme.
Read more on Rural Tourism in June 2022 Kurukshetra Gist.
Nut Graf: There is a lot of scope for rural tourism, given the vast rural hinterland of India and the growing connectivity between urban and rural centres. The G20 Tourism Working Group (TWG) meeting is expected to help in raising awareness about the tourism potential of India at the global level as the delegates of the meetings at 55 different locations will be exposed to Indian culture and tourist destinations.
1. Supreme Court on Terminally Ill Patients
Mains: Major Changes in Guidelines of Euthanasia in India.
Context: The Supreme Court of India recently passed a judgement on altering the existing guidelines for ‘living wills’.
- A Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court headed by Justice K M Joseph passed an order to significantly ease the procedure for passive euthanasia in the country by altering the existing guidelines for ‘living wills’, as laid down in its 2018 judgement in Common Cause vs. Union of India & Anr, which allowed passive euthanasia.
- The case had come back to the court after a petition filed by a nonprofit association submitted that the 2018 guidelines on living wills were “unworkable”.
- A five-judge Constitution Bench headed by then Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra allowed passive euthanasia while recognising the living wills of terminally-ill patients who could go into a permanent vegetative state, and issued guidelines regulating this procedure.
- The Constitution Bench said that the guidelines would be in force until Parliament passed legislation on this. However, this has not happened, and the absence of a law on this subject has rendered the 2018 judgement the last conclusive set of directions on euthanasia.
- The guidelines pertained to questions such as who would execute the living will, and the process by which approval could be granted by the medical board. “We declare that an adult human being having the mental capacity to make an informed decision has the right to refuse medical treatment including withdrawal from life-saving devices,” the court said in the 2018 ruling.
- Directions in the 2018 judgement had several implementation hurdles such as:
- An advance medical directive (AMD) required the signatures of two independent witnesses, and also had to be countersigned by a Judicial Magistrate.
- Also, the treating physician was required to constitute a board comprising three expert medical practitioners from specific but varied fields of medicine, with at least 20 years of experience, who would decide whether to carry out the living will or not. If the medical board granted permission, the will had to be forwarded to the District Collector for his approval.
- The Collector was to then form another medical board of three expert doctors, including the Chief District Medical Officer.
- Only if this second board agreed with the hospital board’s findings would the decision be forwarded to the Judicial Magistrate of First Class (JMFC), who would then visit the patient and examine whether to accord approval.
- In its current order authored by Justice Joseph, the court said it needs to be signed by the executor/patient and independent witnesses in the presence of a notary or gazetted officer who would record his/her satisfaction that the AMD was voluntary and executed without coercion.
- The AMD, if the executor chooses, may be made part of the digital health records.
- Instead of the hospital and Collector forming the two medical boards, both boards will now be formed by the hospital.
- The requirement of 20 years of experience for the doctors has been relaxed to five years.
- The requirement for the Magistrate’s approval has been replaced by an intimation to the Magistrate. The medical board must communicate its decision within 48 hours; the earlier guidelines specified no time limit.
- In case the medical boards set up by the hospital refuses permission, it will now be open to the kin to approach the High Court which will form a fresh medical team.
Euthanasia and Living Will:
- Euthanasia refers to the practice of an individual deliberately ending their life, oftentimes to get relief from an incurable condition, or intolerable pain and suffering. Euthanasia, which can be administered only by a physician, can be either ‘active’ or ‘passive’.
- A living will, or an advance directive, is a document that a person can execute in advance, explaining his/her wish about withholding or withdrawing medical treatment in case of terminal illness and is undergoing prolonged medical treatment with no chances of recovery and cure.
- Passive euthanasia was legalised in India by the Supreme Court in 2018, contingent upon the person having a ‘living will’ or a written document that specifies what actions should be taken if the person is unable to make their own medical decisions in the future.
- In case a person does not have a living will, members of their family can make a plea before the High Court to seek permission for passive euthanasia.
Read more on Judicial Activism
Nut Graf: In a recent ruling, the constitution bench of the Supreme Court simplified passive euthanasia rules in cases of terminal illness to reduce red tape such as the time limit for the medical board decision by modifying the existing guidelines it laid down in 2018 on living wills, or advance directives.
C. GS 3 Related
Nothing here for today!!!
D. GS 4 Related
Nothing here for today!!!
1. Going green
Syllabus: Energy – Renewable energy.
Mains: Transitioning to green energy.
Prelims: Budget 2023-24.
Context: Proposals for green energy in Budget 2023-24.
- The Budget of 2023 has emphasized the Government’s commitment to move towards net-zero carbon emission by 2070.
- An article presented at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos highlighted that India holds the key to hitting global climate change targets because of its sizeable and increasing energy needs.
- As India’s population is set to overtake China, India’s energy needs to propel the economy would surge exponentially. Therefore, it is essential to transition to green energy.
- Moreover, it will provide an opportunity to catalyze new industries, generate employment, and add to overall economic output.
- It is suggested that with the take-off of the electric vehicle (EV) revolution, the availability of indigenously produced lithium-ion batteries has become a necessity. Considerably, the Budget 2023-24 has proposed to exempt customs duty on the import of capital goods and machinery required to manufacture lithium-ion cells. This would give a fillip to local companies to establish EV battery plants.
Also read: Lithium-ion Batteries
Other Proposals in Budget 2023:
- Another key proposal to transition to green energy in Budget 2023 is the establishment of a viability gap funding mechanism.
- It aims to support the development of battery energy storage systems with a capacity of 4000 MWh.
- It should be noted that battery storage systems are important for power grid stabilization, especially at this juncture, when India is increasing its reliance on solar and wind energy.
- The Finance Minister Ms. Sitharaman has also set aside ₹8300 crores towards a ₹20700 crore project for an inter-State transmission system for the evacuation and grid integration of 13 GW of renewable energy from Ladakh.
- The transmission line will address the issue of establishing solar capacity in the region which was otherwise difficult due to its remoteness from India’s main power grid.
Also read: Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA)
Nut Graf: The Budget 2023-24 has proposed various projects/schemes to transition to renewable energy and reduce the country’s dependence on fossil fuels. It is a good step in the right direction. More such efforts should be made, as the energy demand in India will continue to rise.
Category: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. Little to celebrate in Sri Lanka at 75
Syllabus: India’s neighbourhood.
Mains: Concerns associated with the celebration of Independence in Sri Lanka.
Context: 75th Anniversary of Sri Lanka’s Independence is being celebrated on the 4th of February 2023.
Controversies in Sri Lanka:
- The Sri Lankan government is spending 300 million Sri Lankan rupees on its 75th independence day celebrations. This has raised controversy as the country is reeling under economic collapse.
- Another controversy is brewing around the nationwide local government elections, which are supposed to be held before the end of February 2023.
- There is a widespread debate about whether it is appropriate to spend public money on elections when the country is facing the worst economic crisis.
- On the one hand, President’s office claims that the treasury has no money to spend on elections. It is also said that elections are not an urgent public need.
- However, the opposition accuses the ruling coalition of using it as an excuse to avoid electoral humiliation.
Also read: Sri Lankan Economic Crisis 2021
Concerns associated with celebrating Independence in Sri Lanka:
- In Sri Lanka, the 1948 event (independence) has not been able to strike a chord outside the official circles because of:
- The specific path to Sri Lanka’s independence.
- What has ‘not’ been achieved by the governments.
- It has been highlighted that the discourse is sceptical about celebrating independence as an event of national pride because of four root causes namely, Sinhala nationalist, Tamil nationalist, socialist, and academic.
- Sinhala Nationalists:
- They were enraged because political sovereignty was not granted to Sri Lanka by the colonial rulers.
- They argued that the Soulbury Constitution of 1947 embodied only partial independence and incomplete sovereignty and the nationalist leaders did not fight for it.
- Sinhala’s nationalists (in 1952) demanded that Ceylon should be made a republic with a special status for Buddhism in the Constitution.
- Tamil Nationalists:
- Apprehensive of majority dominance, they demanded (before 1948) balanced representation for all minorities in the legislature.
- However, they were granted only legal protection against discriminatory legislation in the independent Constitution.
- As a result, Tamil leaders backed regional autonomy and called for a structuring of the post-independence constitutional order.
- Socialists argued that only a socialist republic would ensure full political independence and sovereignty for all Sri Lankans.
- They collaborated with the Sinhala nationalist Sri Lanka Freedom Party in 1970-72 to establish the ‘socialist, democratic republic’ of Sri Lanka.
- Academic scepticism has highlighted that the incomplete nature of political independence was associated with the absence of a militant anti-colonial mass movement for independence.
- It is also argued that the leaders who negotiated independence in Sri Lanka were never committed to severing economic, political, and cultural links with the colonizer.
- Sinhala Nationalists:
- Furthermore, another major political debate in Sri Lanka since 1948 was the minimum consensus on the liberal democratic nature of the overall framework of the post-independence political order.
- As a result, the First Republican Constitution of 1972 (the first major structural reform after 1948) accommodated the demands of Sinhalese nationalists and Socialists but ignored the demands of Tamil Nationalists.
- The social and political peace in Sri Lanka was short-lived and since the early 1970s it has witnessed violent confrontations between the state and citizens. For instance,
- An armed insurgency in Sinhalese society seeking economic and social rights began in 1971.
- A second JVP (Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna) insurgency was in place from 1987 to 1989. It was put aside quite harshly.
- Seeking autonomy for a Tamil ‘nation’ an insurgency began in the northern Tamil society in 1983. It led to a long and protracted civil war.
- The current economic crisis in the country highlights new questions about the continuing policy and governance failures of Sri Lanka’s political elites.
- It should be noted Sri Lanka is now among the top 10 countries in the world with the highest number of malnourished children.
It is justified on the part of citizens to ask their rulers about their right to spend millions of rupees on independence day celebrations when the meaning of independence is still contested.
Also read: India – Sri Lanka relations for UPSC
Nut Graf: Independence day celebrations in Sri Lanka is marred by several controversies, especially at this moment when the country is suffering from one of its worst economic crises. It is thus suggested to first put the political order in place and ensure welfare for each and every section of society.
Category: POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. Charge sheet scrutiny is not a case of prying eyes
Syllabus: Judicial rulings and interventions.
Mains: Significance of making the charge sheet a public document under RTI.
Prelims: Charge sheet.
- The Supreme Court of India has agreed to live telecast some of its hearings. This move was warmly welcomed by activists clamouring for more openness and transparency in judicial proceedings.
- To make the judicial process more accessible, the Chief Justice of India said that the judgments of the Supreme Court will be translated into four languages (Hindi, Gujarati, Odia, and Tamil) as “the English language in its ‘legal avatar’ is not comprehensible to 99.9% of the citizens”.
- However, SC’s ruling on charge sheets appears to be retrograde. It is ruled that a charge sheet filed against an accused in a criminal case is not a ‘public document’ within the meaning of the Right to Information Act 2005 or the Indian Evidence Act. Thus, the demand to upload the charge sheet onto a public website as soon as it is filed in court was untenable.
- Charge sheet is the Final Report specified by the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973.
- It is a comprehensive account of the crime in question and has crucial information like a list of prosecution witnesses and documents in support of the investigating officer’s conclusions.
- It is argued that this is a setback for those demanding more transparency in criminal justice administration. It will also have severe impacts on investigating officers and victims of the concerned crimes.
- The ruling contradicts the earlier judgment in Youth Bar Association of India vs Union of India (2016).
- It was directed in the case that the First Information Report (FIR) in any case should be made available on the relevant investigating agency’s website within 24 hours of its registration.
- However, as per this ruling, a charge sheet is different from FIR and thus cannot be shared with anyone other than the accused and the victim.
- It was further said that though information would become public during the trial, any attempt to part with details contained in these documents even before a trial begins would be detrimental to the accused and the victim.
- It was highlighted that the open publicity of the final report is not within the scheme of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Significance of transparency of charge sheet:
- In the early days of the Constitution, confidentiality was the major aspect of all judicial activities. Judiciary was considered sacrosanct, where none of its actions was open to criticism or scrutiny.
- However, times have changed and judges, their personal life, and their judicial decisions are often debated and criticized.
- It is suggested by the author that, the demand for sharing the charge sheet with the public is very much in order. It is further said that though vested interests may find loopholes and undermine the prosecution, it should not be the reason to deny access to the public.
- Instead, it will provide an opportunity to evaluate the quality of the investigation.
- Moreover, the prospect of critical analysis by an outsider will potentially enhance the soundness of an investigation and prevent tendentious prosecution against innocent individuals.
- A trial court would benefit more from the outsider scrutiny of the charge sheet.
- Better analysis by well-meaning members of the public before the trials would reduce the chances of loosely framed charge sheets being presented in the court.
Related Link: Reforms in Criminal Justice System
Nut Graf: It is suggested that the Supreme Court’s order against public scrutiny of a charge sheet before a trial begins is a setback to judicial reform and has the potential to hamper the quality of an investigation. It is thus recommended to review this decision, as increased transparency can further strengthen the efficiency of both the investigating agencies and the judiciary.
F. Prelims Facts
Syllabus: GS02-Government Policies & Interventions for Development
Prelims: Renewable Energy; Policies on Solar Energy
Context: The Government of India extends the deadline for the PM KUSUM scheme.
- The Government of India extends the deadline for the PM KUSUM scheme by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) to install 30,000 MW solar power capacity in rural India by 2022.
- The government has extended the PM-KUSUM scheme till March 2026 as its implementation was significantly affected due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- State implementing agencies had sought an extension in the timeline for the execution of projects under the scheme.
- MNRE is monitoring the scheme through regular meetings with states on a weekly/fortnightly basis. State implementation agencies submit progress reports on a monthly basis.
- Launched in 2019, Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (PM-KUSUM) aimed at adding solar capacity of 30,800 MW by 2022 with a total central financial support of Rs 34,422 crore, including service charges to the implementing agencies.
- PM-KUSUM has three components:
- Having farmers install solar power plants worth 10,000 MW,
- Installing 20 lakh solar-powered agriculture pumps that aren’t connected to the grid (off-grid), and
- Converting 15 lakh agriculture pumps, already connected to the grid, into solar.
- As of December 31, 2022, only 88.46 MW of solar capacity had been added; 181,058 solar pumps had been installed and 1,174 grid-connected pumps converted.
Read more on PM KUSUM Scheme.
1. Tihar jail to get AI-powered surveillance system
- Tihar jail is installing artificial intelligence (AI)-powered CCTV cameras to monitor inmates and fight crime.
- The AI-powered CCTV cameras will help detect movements in “dark spots”.
- The premises will also have a real-time grievance redressal system and optical fibre network.
- The grievance redressal system will operate like police control rooms (PCR) to address the problems of inmates in real time.
- Tihar jail is the largest prison complex in South Asia and is home to some of the most high-profile criminals.
- The maximum-security Tihar jail, which has the capacity to house 5,200 inmates, has 12,762 prisoners at present across its nine central prisons.
- The overcrowding has made monitoring inmates difficult.
Read more on Reforms in Criminal Justice System
Read more on Prison Reforms
- The Indian Air Force has initiated the process to find a replacement for the AN-32 transport aircraft in service.
- It has issued a Request For Information (RFI) for the procurement of a Medium Transport Aircraft (MTA) with a carrying capacity of 18 to 30 tonnes.
- An-32 is a twin engine, tactical light transport aircraft designed and manufactured by Antonov Design Bureau of Ukraine for the Indian Air Force (IAF).
- Its NATO reporting name is Cline.
- The IAF currently operates a fleet of more than 90 AN-32s that play a critical role in supporting forward-deployed troops along the country’s frontiers including Ladakh and the Northeast.
- The aircraft can transport either 7.5t of cargo, 50 passengers, 42 paratroopers, or 24 patients and three medical crew over domestic and international air routes.
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
Q1. Consider the following statements regarding legislative councils in India: (Level – Easy)
- In 2020, Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly passed a resolution for the abolition of the Legislative Council.
- The Parliament can abolish a Legislative Council (where it already exists) or create it (where it does not exist) by a special majority, if the legislative assembly of the concerned state, by a simple majority, passes a resolution to that effect.
- The tenure of a Member of the Legislative Council (MLC) is six years, with one-third of the members retiring every two years.
Choose the correct code:
- 1 & 2 only
- 2 & 3 only
- 1 & 3 only
- All of the above
- Statement 01 is correct, In 2020, the Andhra Pradesh Assembly passed a statutory resolution seeking to abolish the State Legislative Council under Article 169 (1) of the Constitution.
- Statement 02 is incorrect, Parliament may by law (simple majority) provide for the abolition of the Legislative Council of a State having such a Council or for the creation of such a Council in a State having no such Council, if the Legislative Assembly of the State passes a resolution to that effect by a majority of the total membership of the Assembly and by a majority of not less than two-thirds of the members of the Assembly present and voting (Special Majority).
- Statement 03 is correct, The legislative council is a continuing chamber, that is, it is a permanent body and is not subject to dissolution. The tenure of a Member of the Legislative Council (MLC) is six years, with one-third of the members retiring every two years.
Q2. Consider the following statements with regards to Dholavira: (Level – Moderate)
- Named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 2021, Dholavira is believed to have been occupied from around 3500 BC (pre-Harappan) till around 1800 BC (late-Harappan period).
- Dholavira is the fifth largest of eight major Harappan sites, including Harappa, Mohenjo-Daro, Ganeriwala, Rakhigarhi, Kalibangan, Rupnagar and Lothal.
- Dholavira’s location is on the Tropic of Cancer.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
- 1 and 2 only
- 2 and 3 only
- 1 and 3 only
- 1, 2 and 3
- The ancient city of Dholavira, the southern centre of the Harappan Civilization, is sited on the arid island of Khadir in the State of Gujarat.
- It was occupied between ca. 3000-1500 BCE and it is one of the best preserved urban settlements from the period in Southeast Asia, comprising a fortified city and a cemetery.
- It was inscribed on the UNESCO list of world heritage sites in 2021, making it the first site of Indus Valley Civilisation in India to be included on the coveted list.
- Rakhigarhi is the largest Harappan site in the Indian subcontinent whereas Dholavira is the fifth largest of eight major Harappan sites.
- Dholavira is located on the Tropic of Cancer (23.5 degrees north).
Q3. The Kaladan multimodal project aims to improve connectivity to which of the Indian states through Myanmar? (Level – Easy)
- Arunachal Pradesh
- The Kaladan Multimodal project connects Kolkata port with Myanmar’s Sittwe Port by sea, Sittwe to Paletwa via river Kaladan, Paletwa to the border of India, and Myanmar via road and further ahead to Lawngtlai, Mizoram by road.
Q4. “It is a group of mostly western creditor countries that grew from a 1956 meeting in which Argentina agreed to meet its public creditors. Their objective is to find sustainable debt-relief solutions for countries that are unable to repay their bilateral loans.” Which group is this? (Level – Moderate)
- Paris Club
- Global Environment Facility
- CAF – Development Bank of Latin America
- The Paris Club is a group of mostly western creditor countries that grew from a 1956 meeting in which Argentina agreed to meet its public creditors in Paris. Their objective is to find sustainable debt-relief solutions for countries that are unable to repay their bilateral loans.
- It describes itself as a forum where official creditors meet to solve payment difficulties faced by debtor countries. All 22 are members of the group called Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
Q5. Consider the following: (Level – Difficult)
- Calcutta Unitarian Committee
- Tabernacle of New Dispensation
- Indian Reform Association
Keshab Chandra Sen is associated with the establishment of which of the above?
- 1 and 3 only
- 2 and 3 only
- 3 only
- 1, 2 and 3
- In 1881, Keshab Chandra Sen established Naba Bidhan (New Dispensation) meaning new universalist religion after having differences within Brahmo Samaj. He was also part of the Indian Reform Association to legalise Brahmo marriage and to fix the minimum age of marriage.
- The Calcutta Unitarian Committee was formed by Raja Rammohan Roy, Dwarkanath Tagore and William Adam, hence irrelevant to the question. Hence options A and D are eliminated.
- Sen formed the Indian Reform Association (1870) to persuade the British government to enact the Native Marriage Act of 1872 (Civil marriage act) legalising Brahmo marriages and fixing the minimum marriageable ages for boys and girls.
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions
- Rural tourism has immense potential in India’s growth story. Elaborate. (250 words; 15 marks) (GS-3; Economics)
- Although the judicial proceedings have become increasingly transparent in India, there is still scope for improvement. Do you agree? Critically analyse. (250 words; 15 marks)(GS-2; Polity)
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CNA 04 Feb 2023:- Download PDF Here