23 Jun 2020: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

23 June 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS 1 Related
ART AND CULTURE
1. For first time since 1565, a Kamakhya festival sans fair
B. GS 2 Related
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. India to attend trilateral meet with China
2. China to join UN arms trade treaty
3. India can reduce trade deficit with China by $8.4 bn: study
4. Japan to rename islands disputed with China
C. GS 3 Related
ECONOMY
1. SBI mobilises 13,212 kg gold through GMS
ENVIRONMENT AND ECOLOGY
1. Pollution board may revoke OIL well closure order
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
INTERNAL SECURITY
1. The lone wolf threat
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. A way out of undelineated borders
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. Transparency during a crisis
F. Prelims Facts
1. Rath Yatra
2. 1921 Malabar Rebellion
3. ITC Agri rolls out more collaborative e¬Choupal 4.0
4. DRI busts syndicate smuggling exotic macaws from Bangladesh
G. Tidbits
1. ‘Border tensions may deflect India from reforms’
2. Sukarno’s success and failure
3. Bolshevism in Russia
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

2. China to join UN arms trade treaty

Context:

China will join a global pact to regulate arms sales.

Details:

  • The Communist Party leadership’s top legislative body has voted to adopt a decision on joining the UN Arms Trade Treaty.
  • It comes after U.S. President Donald Trump announced plans to pull the U.S. out of the agreement in 2019, which entered into force in 2014.
  • Beijing has stated that it is committed to efforts to enhance peace and stability in the world.
  • Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman told that joining the treaty was “another important measure for China to support multilateralism”.

UN Arms Trade Treaty:

  • The UN Arms Trade Treaty is a multilateral treaty aimed at regulating the global arms trade.
  • It was envisioned as a tool to prevent conflict and human rights violations fuelled by poorly regulated trade in arms, which could not conceivably be controlled via national legislation alone.
  • It is designed to control the flow of weapons into conflict zones.
    • The treaty calls for the international sale of weapons to be linked to the human rights records of buyers.
    • It requires countries to establish regulations for selling conventional weapons.
    • It seeks to prevent conventional military weapons from falling into the hands of terrorists or organized criminal groups, and to stop deals that would violate UN arms embargoes.
  • Conventional weapons covered by the UN Arms Trade Treaty include tanks and other armoured combat vehicles, artillery, attack helicopters, naval warships, missiles and missile launchers, and small arms.
  • It establishes common international standards for the regulation of the international trade in ammunition, weapons parts, and arms components.
  • It does not regulate the domestic sale or use of weapons in any country.
    • It recognizes the legitimacy of the arms trade to enable states to provide for their own security.

Note:

  • India has not signed the treaty.
  • One of the arguments made by India in 2013 against the treaty was that New Delhi had “strong and effective national export controls” on military hardware to ensure they don’t fall into the wrong hands.
  • Also, one of India’s concerns is that the treaty does not include non-state actors in its purview, and therefore does not address the pressing concern of illicit trafficking and use of conventional arms by non-state actors. This is a major lacuna which may serve to make the treaty ineffective.

3. India can reduce trade deficit with China by $8.4 bn: study

Context:

In a study, Acuité Ratings & Research has said that India can potentially reduce its trade deficit with China by $8.4 billion (17.3% of the deficit with China) over FY21-22, and 0.3% of India’s GDP.

Details:

  • India recorded a trade deficit of $48.5 billion with China in FY20.
  • While imports from China have moderately declined by 15% since FY18 due to imposition of anti-dumping duties on some products, the dependence of the domestic economy on Chinese imports remains high with direct contribution to over 30% of India’s aggregate trade deficit.
  • Over the past 3 decades, India’s exports to China grew at a CAGR of 30% but its imports expanded at 47%, leading to lower capacity utilisation of domestic players in a few sectors.

Findings of the study:

  • The study says that, trade deficit can be reduced by the rationalisation of just a quarter of India’s imports from China in select sectors where India has well-established manufacturing capabilities.
  • It states that, without any significant additional investments, the Indian domestic manufacturing sector can substitute 25% of the total imports from specified sectors in the first phase.
  • It is highlighted that nearly 40 sub-sectors of India have the potential to lower their import dependency on China.
  • The sectors include chemicals, automotive components, bicycles parts, drug formulations, cosmetics, consumer electronics and leather-based goods.

4. Japan to rename islands disputed with China

Context:

A local council in southern Japan has voted to rename an area, including islands disputed with China and Taiwan.

Details:

  • The local assembly of Ishigaki city in Japan approved a plan to change the name of the area covering the Tokyo-controlled Senkaku Islands, known by Taiwan and China as the Diaoyus, from “Tonoshiro” to “Tonoshiro Senkaku”.
  • Local media said another part of Ishigaki is also known as Tonoshiro, and the name change was cast as a bid to avoid confusion.

Issue:

  • The uninhabited islands are at the centre of a festering row between Tokyo and Beijing and the move sparked anger in both Taiwan and mainland China.
  • Beijing has denounced the move as illegal and a serious provocation.
  • Taiwan says the islands are part of its territory, and also protested the move.

Category: ENVIRONMENT AND ECOLOGY

1. Pollution board may revoke OIL well closure order

Context:

The Pollution Control Board Assam (PCBA) is likely to revoke its order to Oil India Limited (OIL) to close down all its crude oil and natural gas wells around the blowout-affected one in the Baghjan area of eastern Assam’s Tinsukia district.

Background:

  • Following a blowout at the natural gas well, PCBA had asked OIL to immediately cease all drilling and production operations in its Baghjan oilfield.

This topic has been covered in 18th June 2020 Comprehensive News Analysis. Click here to read.

Details:

  • The order would have meant shutting down 17 crude oil and four natural gas wells that together produce a sizeable quantity of OIL’s total output.
  • After receiving the notice, OIL said shutting down the wells was not an option, as it could lead to an ecological disaster besides hampering the operations to cap the blowout well that burst into flames later.

2. 1921 Malabar Rebellion

  • The Moplah Rebellion is also well known as the Malabar Rebellion of 1921.
  • It was the culmination of a series of riots by Moplahs (Muslims of Malabar) in the 19th and early 20th centuries against the British and the Hindu landlords (locally referred to as Janmi) in Malabar (Northern Kerala).

Read more about Malabar/Moplah Rebellion 1921.

3. ITC Agri rolls out more collaborative e¬Choupal 4.0

What’s in News?

  • In its 20th year of launch, ITC Agri has rolled e-Choupal 4.0.
  • e-Choupal is a two-decade old initiative from ITC, aimed to web-enable farmers to overcome the challenges related to information access and procurement.

e-Choupal 4.0:

  • e-Choupal 4.0 is a more collaborative and integrated platform that leverages new digital technologies to provide end-to-end and personalised services to farmers on weather and markets on a real-time basis.
  • The new platform delivers information on crop monitoring, crop advisory and electronic marketing place for farm inputs, helps in remote sensing for addressing crop stress and with the help of start-ups, does rapid quality testing.

4. DRI busts syndicate smuggling exotic macaws from Bangladesh

What’s in News?

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has busted a wildlife smuggling syndicate with the seizure of a consignment of exotic macaws which had been smuggled from Bangladesh to Kolkata.

Details:

  • The exotic birds were identified as Hyacinth macaw, Pesquet’s parrot, Severe macaw and Hahn’s macaw.
  • The seized macaws are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), with Hyacinth macaw being accorded the highest protection.

Concerns:

  • West Bengal and northeast India are vulnerable to cross-border wildlife smuggling because of their proximity to the Bangladesh and Myanmar borders, and to Thailand.
  • The possibility of spread of zoonotic diseases on account of smuggling in such exotic species is increasingly becoming a global concern against the backdrop of COVID-19.

G. Tidbits

1. ‘Border tensions may deflect India from reforms’

What’s in News?

According to Fitch Ratings, the ongoing border tension with China does not immediately impact India’s credit profile, but may distract the government from implementing reforms.

  • Fitch Ratings director (Sovereign Ratings) said that the Government of India has announced reforms to improve growth going forward and a strong GDP growth is important to cut down public debt.
  • While he stated that the announcement of reforms could lift growth in the medium term and that the recent situation at the border with China, would not necessarily impact the credit profile immediately, he opined that the geo-politics could distract the government while delivering reforms.

2. Sukarno’s success and failure

  • Sukarno was the leader of the Indonesian struggle for independence from the Dutch Empire. He was a prominent leader of Indonesia’s nationalist movement during the Dutch colonial period.
  • Post World War II, the independence movement, strongly supported by India, was launched to force the Dutch to transfer power to the Indonesian people. This was achieved in 1950 and Sukarno was unanimously chosen as President.

3. Bolshevism in Russia

  • Bolshevism is the communist form of government adopted in Russia following the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917.
  • The Bolsheviks were a radical far-left Marxist faction founded by Vladimir Lenin post the split from the Menshevik faction of the Marxist Russian Social Democratic Labour Party.
  • The Bolsheviks took over power in Russia in November 1917, overthrowing the liberal Provisional Government of Alexander Kerensky. Their beliefs and practices were often referred to as Bolshevism.

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. Consider the following statements with Respect to UN Arms Trade Treaty:
  1. The treaty regulates global arms trade as well as the domestic sale or use of weapons in the member states.
  2. It establishes common international standards for the regulation of the international trade in ammunition, weapons parts, and arms components.
  3. India has not signed the treaty.

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

  1. 1 only
  2. 1 and 3 only
  3. 1 and 2 only
  4. 2 and 3 only
See
Answer
Q2. Senkaku Islands - a disputed territory, is located in which sea?
  1. Sea of Japan
  2. East China Sea
  3. Yellow Sea
  4. South China Sea
See
Answer
Q3. Consider the following statements with respect to the Malabar Rebellion of 1921:
  1. It was the riots by Moplahs, directed against the British and also the Hindu landlords (Called Janmi).
  2. The British viceroy in India during the rebellion was Lord Reading.

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
See
Answer
Q4. Consider the following statements with respect to CITES:
  1. Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.
  2. It classifies plants and animals according to five categories based on how threatened they are.
  3.  It is administered by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
  4. CITES is legally binding on state parties to the convention.

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

  1. 1, 2 and 3 only
  2. 1, 3 and 4 only
  3. 1, 2, 3 and 4
  4. 1 and 2 only
See
Answer

I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

  1. Analyze the anti-colonial struggle in Southeast Asia and bring out their similarities and differences with the Indian Independence movement. (10 marks, 150 words)
  2. Discuss the causes that contributed to the Russian Revolution and the impact of the revolution on Russia and the world. (15 marks, 250 words)

Read the previous CNA here.

23 June 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here

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