22 May 2021: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

CNA 22nd May 2021:- Download PDF Here

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS 1 Related
B. GS 2 Related
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. Clashes erupt in East Jerusalem after ceasefire comes into effect
C. GS 3 Related
ECONOMY
1. SC: personal guarantors liable for corporate debt
2. RBI to pay Rs. 99,122 cr. surplus to Centre
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
1. The AIDS fight offers a COVID vaccine patent pathway
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. Fitful approach
F. Prelims Facts
1. Deep purple from Odisha
2. 80 of Odisha tribal group test positive
G. Tidbits
1. Pandemic has made countries more self-seeking: Jaishankar
2. A green warrior to the core is no more
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

2. RBI to pay Rs. 99,122 cr. surplus to Centre

Context:

  • The Reserve Bank of India’s board has approved a transfer of significantly higher-than-expected surplus to the government for the July-March accounting period.

Details:

  • The RBI announced a surplus transfer of Rs. 99,122 crore for the 9-month period from July 2020 to March 2021. The government had budgeted to receive a surplus of about Rs. 50,000 crore from the RBI to be accounted for in the budget estimates for 2021/22.
    • The bank will be moving to an April to March accounting year from 2021/22, from the current July to June year.
  • The surplus reflects the central bank’s income from its open market operations as well as receipts from foreign reserve sales.
  • The RBI maintains a Contingency Risk Buffer at 5.50% in line with recommendations of the Bimal Jalan Committee report and transfers the surplus to the government.

Economic challenges to the government:

  • Though the higher-than-expected dividend or surplus transfer by the RBI is a welcome relief to the government, it may still not be sufficient to meet the revenue estimates of the government for the current year.

COVID to hit tax revenue:

  • The lockdowns in several states have resulted in subduing the economic activities and this is going to result in a significant drop in GST revenues anticipated in May and June of 2021.
  • The high commodity prices fuelling inflation, despite the lower demand would only dent the margins of corporates in many sectors, compressing the growth in direct tax collections as well.

Difficult disinvestment target:

  • The government is likely to find it challenging to meet its privatisation and disinvestment target of $24 billion given the high degree of uncertainty surrounding the second wave and lack of interest by the private players.

 Cut in public expenditure:

  • The lower than expected revenue inflow may pressurize the government to cut public expenditure. The lowering of public expenditure, especially when it is a necessity to spend to spur investment and growth would prove detrimental to the Indian economy both in the shorter as well as the longer term.

Disrupted economic recovery:

  • The economic growth rates have hit record low levels last year and the second wave has only dented the economic recovery.

For more information on this issue refer to:

UPSC Comprehensive News Analysis for 21st May 2021

Category: POLITY AND GOVERNANCE

1. Fitful approach

Context:

  • The Central government has recently sent a notice to messaging service provider WhatsApp to withdraw its updated privacy policy.
  • The Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) has sought a response from WhatsApp within seven days.

Background:

  • WhatsApp, in early 2021, updated its privacy policy.
  • There had been an intense backlash against the decision to update its privacy policy, following which it was forced to postpone the implementation date.
  • According to the new policy, users would no longer be able to stop the app from sharing data (such as location and number) with its parent Facebook unless they delete their accounts altogether. 

Details:

  • The article argues against such an intervention into what it terms as a legitimate business decision from WhatsApp. 
  • Instead the article argues that India should come up with data protection laws on the lines of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation or GDPR. This can help in ensuring a well laid out standard for companies operating in India without the need for ad hoc measures and provisions.

F. Prelims Facts

1. Deep purple from Odisha

  • The Koraput traditional agriculture was accorded the Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System (GIAHS) status in 2012.
    • Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) are outstanding landscapes of aesthetic beauty that combine agricultural biodiversity, resilient ecosystems and a valuable cultural heritage. Located in specific sites around the world, they sustainably provide multiple goods and services, food and livelihood security for millions of small-scale farmers.
    • GIAHS status helps to promote public understanding, awareness about sustainable agriculture and to safeguard the social, cultural, economic and environmental goods and services that provide to family farmers, smallholders, indigenous peoples and local communities.
  • Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) was started by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), an agency of the United Nations.
  • The other recognised GIAHS sites in India include the following:
    • Kuttanad Below Sea Level Farming System of Kerala.
    • Pampore Saffron Heritage of Kashmir.

2. 80 of Odisha tribal group test positive

  • The Dongria Kondh tribe is a particularly vulnerable tribal group (PVTG) living in the Niyamgiri hill range of Odisha.
  • There are 75 PVTGs in India with Odisha housing 13 of them (max for any state in India).

Context:

  • A sudden spike of COVID-19 positive cases is being reported among the Dongria Kondh tribe.

For related information refer to:

UPSC Comprehensive News Analysis for 15th May 2021

G. Tidbits

1. Pandemic has made countries more self-seeking: Jaishankar

  • External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar has spoken about COVID induced anxieties and their impact on international relations.
  • The speech by the minister noted that the pandemic had prompted countries to become more self-seeking and renege on their commitments, block supply chain and logistics to cater to their own domestic demand while also leveraging their capabilities to create shortages for strategic purposes or to gain financially. This had led to countries prioritising self-interest and national security.
  • This the minister noted is in stark contrast to the pre-pandemic phase wherein globalization emphasized global exchanges based on economic efficiency.
  • The minister emphasized the need for manufacturing security to hedge against excessive international dependency.
  • The speech is being interpreted as an admission by the Minister to the problems that India itself is facing in continuing with the Vaccine Maitri project, under which it had promised to deliver vaccines all over the world and especially to the South Asian partner countries.

2. A green warrior to the core is no more

  • Well-known environmentalist and Gandhian Sunderlal Bahuguna has passed away.

For information on his life and contributions, refer to:

UPSC PIB Summary & Analysis for 21st May 2021

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. “Bao-dhaan” recently in News is: 
  1. A medium-grain rice, grown in Bhutan and the eastern Himalayas.
  2. Red parboiled rice variety grown in Palakkad district of Kerala.
  3. A GI-tagged variety of rice known for its strong aroma that is widely used in traditional Bengali cuisine.
  4. Iron rich red rice grown in Brahmaputra valley of Assam.
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: d

Explanation:

  • Bao Dhaan is the Iron-rich ‘red rice’ grown in the Brahmaputra valley of Assam.
  • This variety is grown without the use of chemical fertilizers.
Q2. Consider these statements w.r.t Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs):
  1. A separate category for Primitive Tribal Groups was created by the Bhuria Commission.
  2. India has more than 100 Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups.
  3. Andhra Pradesh has the highest number of PVTGs.

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

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

Answer: d

Explanation:

  • The Dhebar commission in 1973 created a separate category for Primitive Tribal Groups.
  • There are 75 Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups in India.
  • Odisha has the highest number of PVTGs. 13 tribes in the state are recognized as PVTGs. Andhra Pradesh has 12 PVTGs.
Q3. Which of the given statements w.r.t Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems 
(GIAHS) is/are correct?
  1. It was conceptualized in 2002 during World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa.
  2. Koraput in Odisha known for Kayal cultivation is a recognised GIAHS site in India.
  3. Kuttanad in Kerala and Kashmir valley’s Pampore region are proposed to be recognised as GIAHS sites.

Options:

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

Answer: b

Explanation:

  • Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) was conceptualized in 2002 during World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa.
  • Koraput in Odisha is a recognised GIAHS site in India but not for Kayal cultivation.
  • Kuttanad in Kerala for Kayal Cultivation and Kashmir valley’s Pampore for saffron cultivation have already been accorded the GIAHS status.
Q4. Which of the following is/are correctly matched?
  1. Chipko Movement – Uttarakhand
  2. Appiko Movement – Andhra Pradesh
  3. Save Silent Valley Movement – Kerala
  4. Jungle Bachao Andolan – Bihar

Choose the correct option:

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

Answer: a

Explanation:

  • Chipko Movement took place in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand.
  • Inspired by the Chipko movement, Appiko Movement was organized in the state of Karnataka.
  • Save Silent Valley movement was an environmental movement organized to protest against the hydroelectric project in the Silent Valley Forest in Kerala.
  • Jungle Bachao Andolan was organized by the tribals in Bihar’s Singhbum district.
Q5. Which of the following statements is/are correct? (UPSC 2017)

Viruses can infect

  1. bacteria
  2. fungi
  3. plants

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

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

Answer: d

Explanation:

Viruses can infect all types of life forms including bacteria, fungi, plants, animals and other micro-organisms.

I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

  1. What do you understand by ‘Voluntary Licensing‘ (VL)? Should countries and companies explore VL to enhance access to essential Covid vaccines and medicines? Discuss. (15 Marks, 250 Words) [GS-3, Economy].
  2. There is a growing demand for India to write laws on data protection and privacy in the wake of the WhatsApp privacy policy. Examine. (10 Marks, 150 Words)[GS-2, Governance].

Read the previous CNA here.

CNA 22nd May 2021:- Download PDF Here

Leave a Comment

Your Mobile number and Email id will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

*