21 Jun 2024: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

21 June 2024 CNA
Download PDF Here


A. GS 1 Related
B. GS 2 Related
1. CBI registers case over ‘compromised integrity’ of UGC-NET and SC to examine 
pleas for independent panel inquiry into NEET
1. Patna High Court strikes down 65% quota in Bihar
1. Jaishankar reviews energy projects in Sri Lanka visit
C. GS 3 Related
1. Over 5,000 Myanmar refugees take shelter in Manipur’s Naga district
2. Tribal Affairs Minister ‘misinformed’ about Manipur conflict: Kuki-Zo body
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
1. The U.S.-Saudi agreement, from fist-bump to embrace
1. How dangerous is methanol poisoning?
F. Prelims Facts
1. Rutte seals NATO top job after lone rival drops out
2. Limbless amphibian found in Kaziranga for first time
3. Sickle cell patients need urgent access to modern medication
4. Bhartruhari Mahtab appointed pro tem Speaker of Lok Sabha
G. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
H. UPSC Mains Practice Questions
FIP Magazine

Category: POLITY

1. Patna High Court strikes down 65% quota in Bihar

Syllabus: Reservation

Mains: Issue of 65% quota in Bihar 

Context​: The Patna High Court recently invalidated amendments passed by the Bihar legislature to increase the reservation for Backward Classes (BC), Extremely Backward Classes (EBC), Scheduled Castes (SC), and Scheduled Tribes (ST) from 50% to 65% in educational institutions and government jobs. This decision has significant implications for the state’s reservation policy and its efforts to address social equity.


  • Legislative Amendments: In November 2023, the Bihar Assembly unanimously passed a Bill to increase reservations from 50% to 65% for BC, EBC, SC, and ST categories. Including the 10% Economically Weaker Section (EWS) quota, the total reservation stood at 75%.
  • Legal Challenge: The amendments were challenged in the Patna High Court, citing the Supreme Court’s 50% cap on reservations established in the Indira Sawhney case.


Legal Constraints:

  • Supreme Court Cap: The Supreme Court, in the Indira Sawhney case, imposed a 50% cap on reservations to ensure a balance between affirmative action and meritocracy.
  • High Court Ruling: The Patna High Court’s Division Bench, led by Chief Justice K.V. Chandran, ruled that the amendments exceeded this cap and thus were unconstitutional.

Representation vs. Proportion:

  • State Government’s Argument: Advocate-General P.K. Shahi argued that the increased reservation was necessary due to the lack of adequate representation of these classes in educational institutions and government jobs.
  • Petitioners’ Argument: Advocate Dinu Kumar contended that the decision was based on caste proportions from a recent survey rather than on inadequate representation, which contradicted the principles laid out by the Supreme Court.

Constitutional and Social Equity Concerns:

  • Proportional Representation: The Bihar government’s intention to base reservations on caste proportions raises questions about maintaining equity and social justice within constitutional limits.
  • Potential Discrimination: Critics argue that exceeding the 50% cap might lead to reverse discrimination, affecting the opportunities available to unreserved categories.


Legal Precedent:

  • The ruling reinforces the Supreme Court’s 50% cap on reservations, impacting future legislative attempts to alter reservation quotas beyond this limit.
  • It underscores the judiciary’s role in upholding constitutional principles against populist legislative actions.

Social Impact:

  • The decision affects a significant portion of Bihar’s population, particularly those in the BC, EBC, SC, and ST categories, who were set to benefit from the increased reservations.
  • It also brings into focus the need for balancing affirmative action with merit-based opportunities in public employment and education.


Re-evaluation of Reservation Policies:

  • Comprehensive Review: Conduct a comprehensive review of the state’s reservation policies to ensure they align with constitutional limits and adequately address representation issues.
  • Data-Driven Decisions: Utilize accurate and recent data on caste representation to inform policy decisions, ensuring they meet both legal and social equity standards.

Alternative Measures:

  • Targeted Interventions: Implement additional educational and economic support programs for underrepresented communities to complement reservation policies.
  • Capacity Building: Focus on capacity-building initiatives to improve the competitiveness and representation of these communities in various sectors.

Legal Recourse:

  • Appeal to Supreme Court: The Bihar government may consider appealing to the Supreme Court for a review of the High Court’s decision, presenting a robust case for the necessity of increased reservations based on inadequate representation.

Nut Graf: The Patna High Court’s decision to strike down the 65% reservation in Bihar underscores the complexities of balancing constitutional limits with social equity goals. While the ruling reinforces the Supreme Court’s cap on reservations, it also highlights the need for the state to explore alternative measures to address representation issues among BC, EBC, SC, and ST communities.


1. Jaishankar reviews energy projects in Sri Lanka visit

Syllabus: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s Interests

Mains: India – Sri Lanka Relations

Context​: External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar’s recent visit to Colombo focused on advancing key energy sector projects and other collaborative initiatives between India and Sri Lanka. The visit underscored the commitment to strengthen bilateral relations and support Sri Lanka’s development efforts.

Background of the Visit

  • Objective: To review progress on energy projects and other India-backed initiatives.
  • Significance: This was Jaishankar’s first bilateral visit abroad after being re-appointed in the new Indian coalition government.

Key Discussions and Projects

Energy Sector Initiatives:

  • LNG Supply: Plans for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) supply between India and Sri Lanka.
  • Petroleum Pipeline: Proposed pipeline to facilitate petroleum transport between the two countries.
  • Oil and Gas Exploration: Advancing collaborative projects in oil and gas exploration.
  • Sampur Solar Power Plant: Construction to commence in July 2024.

Maritime Security:

  • Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC).
  • Main centre at Colombo Naval Headquarters.
  • Sub-centre in Hambantota.
  • Unmanned installations across Sri Lanka’s coastline.
  • Objective: Deepen maritime security cooperation between India and Sri Lanka.

Development Projects:

  • Housing Projects: Inauguration of 106 houses under the Indian Housing Project in various districts.
  • Model Villages: Handing over houses in model villages in Colombo and Trincomalee.
  • Liquid Milk Industry and Fertilizer Production: Enhancing efficiency in these sectors.
  • Infrastructure Development: Support for Trincomalee development and Kankesanthurai port expansion.


  • Strengthening Bilateral Ties: Enhances India-Sri Lanka relations and demonstrates India’s commitment to supporting Sri Lanka.
  • Energy Security: Key energy projects aim to bolster energy security and economic stability in Sri Lanka.
  • Maritime Security: Establishing the MRCC enhances regional maritime security and cooperation.


  • Collaborative Efforts: Continued collaboration between India and Sri Lanka on energy and development projects.
  • Community Engagement: Addressing community-specific issues through dialogue and inclusive development strategies.
  • Infrastructure Investment: Ongoing investment in critical infrastructure to support economic growth and stability.

Nut Graf: Minister Jaishankar’s visit to Sri Lanka highlighted the importance of India-Sri Lanka collaboration in energy, maritime security, and development projects. The visit reinforced India’s commitment to supporting Sri Lanka’s development and addressing bilateral and regional challenges through cooperative efforts.

2. Tribal Affairs Minister ‘misinformed’ about Manipur conflict: Kuki-Zo body

Syllabus: Role of state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security

Mains: Ethnic conflict in Manipur

Context​: The Indigenous Tribal Leaders’ Forum (ITLF) has criticized Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram for his comments labelling the Manipur conflict as a mere “law and order situation.” The ITLF contends that the conflict, which has resulted in significant loss of life and displacement, is far more complex and requires a deeper understanding and intervention.


  • Conflict in Manipur: The ethnic conflict in Manipur, primarily between the Kuki-Zo tribes and the majority Meitei community, has resulted in over 200 deaths and displaced more than 60,000 people.
  • Minister’s Statement: Jual Oram described the conflict as a law and order issue being managed by the Home Ministry in coordination with the State government and the Governor.


Mischaracterisation of the Conflict:

  • The ITLF argues that the conflict is not simply a law and order issue, as implied by Minister Oram.
  • The situation has escalated beyond the initial stages where an impartial intervention could have mitigated violence.

Role of State Police and Government:

  • Allegations against the State police, predominantly from the Meitei community, for not preventing attacks and actively participating in violence against the Kuki-Zo tribals.
  • Accusations against Manipur’s Chief Minister, N. Biren Singh, for supporting militant Meitei organizations that targeted tribals.

Militant Organisations:

  • Groups like Arambai Tenggol and Meitei Leepun have been implicated in orchestrating violence against Kuki-Zo tribals.
  • Public threats from these groups to eradicate Kuki-Zo tribals from the state.


Humanitarian Impact:

  • Significant loss of life and displacement, highlighting the severe humanitarian crisis in Manipur.
  • The need for a nuanced approach to address the underlying ethnic tensions and prevent further violence.

Political and Social Implications:

  • The conflict has broader implications for ethnic relations and political stability in the region.
  • Mischaracterization by officials can lead to inadequate responses and exacerbate tensions.

Need for Accurate Representation:

  • Accurate understanding and representation of the conflict are crucial for effective resolution.
  • Misinformation can hinder peace efforts and prolong suffering for affected communities.


In-depth Investigation:

  • Conducting a thorough investigation into the allegations of state-sponsored violence and police complicity.
  • Establishing an independent commission to assess the situation and recommend appropriate actions.

Inclusive Dialogue:

  • Facilitating dialogue between the conflicting communities to address grievances and build trust.
  • Involving neutral parties and experts in conflict resolution to mediate the discussions.

Strengthening Law Enforcement:

  • Reforming and sensitizing law enforcement agencies to ensure impartiality and protect all communities.
  • Enhancing security measures to prevent further violence and protect vulnerable populations.

Support for Affected Communities:

  • Providing relief and rehabilitation for displaced individuals and families.
  • Implementing long-term development programs to promote social cohesion and economic stability.

Nut Graf: The conflict in Manipur is a complex issue that goes beyond mere law and order. Recognizing the ethnic and political dimensions is crucial for developing effective solutions. Accurate representation by officials, inclusive dialogue, and robust law enforcement reforms are essential steps toward resolving the conflict and ensuring peace and stability in the region.


Leave a Comment

Your Mobile number and Email id will not be published.