31 May 2020: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

31 May 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here


A. GS 1 Related
1. Skymet says monsoon is in; IMD waits
B. GS 2 Related
1. Kerala issues data security guidelines
C. GS 3 Related
1. ‘Airline sector was already weak, COVID-19 exposed it’
2. Draft e-com policy for comments soon: DPIIT
1. Tree transplantation policy may get Cabinet nod soon
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
1. Why is the locust surge posing a threat to agriculture in India?
F. Prelims Facts
1. HC questions SEC’s appointment
2. PM CARES not within the ambit of RTI Act: PMO
3. Military bonding beyond borders
G. Tidbits
1. India’s recovery rate improves to 47%
2. Nagaland Governor told to defer delimitation process
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

2. Draft e-com policy for comments soon: DPIIT


  • Draft e-commerce policy.


  • India does not have an e-commerce policy yet.
  • E-commerce is a fast emerging sector and there is a need to have a definite, clear and coherent policy, keeping in tune with the requirement of the society and service providers.


  • The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) will be putting out a draft e-commerce policy in the public domain to seek views and comments.


Data regulations:

  • Several foreign e-commerce firms have raised concerns over some points in the draft pertaining to data.

Quality of products:

  • There are a lot of counterfeit and inferior products being listed on the e-commerce platforms. There have also been reports of violation of various safety standards in the products being sold via the e-commerce platforms.

Way forward:

Detailed guidelines:

  • The e-commerce policy should lay down a very clear policy on what is data; what kind of data the e-commerce companies can use; how the citizens’ right of privacy can be protected; how the e-commerce data is being leveraged for other purposes; commercial benefits accrue to the e-commerce data holder; how citizens can have access to those benefits.

Balancing the interests of all stakeholders:

  • The policy measures should balance the interests of the customers and the service providers.

Consumer rights:

  • The protection of consumer rights is of utmost importance.
  • There is a need to prevent the sale of substandard goods on the e-commerce platforms for which the platforms themselves can have quality control measures.


1. Tree transplantation policy may get Cabinet nod soon


  • The Delhi Government’s Tree Transplantation Policy 2020.


  • Under the Tree Transplantation Policy 2020, for a development project, 80% of trees affected by the developmental activities at a particular site have to be transplanted.

Streamlined with previous policy:

  • The existing policy of planting 10 saplings for each tree being felled will continue, and also 10 saplings will have to be planted for each tree being transplanted too, according to the new policy.

Institutional framework:

  • The government is expected to come out with a list of empanelled technical agencies, which will be doing the transplantation.
  • A dedicated ‘Tree Transplantation Cell’ will also be established.


  • Exception to the 80% transplantation rule will be given in projects where less than 10 trees are felled and also in “exceptional cases” where a government committee gives permission.

Post implementation evaluation:

  • For projects in which 100 or more trees have been transplanted, a social audit at the end of one year of completion of transplantation will be done to establish survival rate.


  • The environmental experts have been critical about the Tree Transplantation Policy.
    • They have argued the need for a tree preservation policy over the tree transplantation policy. They have suggested that the projects should be redesigned keeping tree preservation in mind.
    • Tree transplantation is expensive and survival rate is problematic.

2. PM CARES not within the ambit of RTI Act: PMO

  • The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) has refused to disclose details on the creation and operation of the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM CARES) Fund under an RTI applicant claiming that the fund is “not a public authority” within the ambit of the RTI Act, 2005.
    • The PM CARES Fund accepts donations and provides relief during the COVID-19 pandemic and other similar emergencies.
  • Another RTI request on the issue had also been refused citing a Supreme Court (SC) observation that “indiscriminate and impractical demands under RTI Act for disclosure of all and sundry information would be counterproductive”.

3. Military bonding beyond borders

  • Ties between British-India and Nepali Gurkhas, who originate from the mountainous region of Gurkha can be traced to the Treaty of Sugauli, signed at the end of the Anglo-Nepalese war in 1816.

Under the British rule:

  • The Gurkhas played a significant role in the consolidation of the British Empire in India. Gurkhas had engaged in combat during the Gurkha-Sikh War, Anglo-Sikh wars, the Afghan wars and the First World War.
  • Gurkhas have fought in the Falklands war and served the British in Hong Kong, Cyprus, Sierra Leone and East Timor.

After Independence:

  • After India gained Independence, six Gurkha regiments were transferred from the British to the Indian Army as part of a tripartite agreement between Nepal, India and Britain. A seventh regiment was raised after Independence.

Battle for Siachen:

  • The Bilafond La is one of the “gates” leading to the Siachen glacier.
  • Bilafond La is a mountain pass directly north of map point NJ 980420, which defined the end of the 1972 Line of Control between Pakistan and India, as part of the Simla Agreement.

G. Tidbits

1. India’s recovery rate improves to 47%

  • India’s COVID-19 recovery rate has improved considerably to 47.4% from 38.29% on May 18.
  • Data from State health departments put the total number of cases in the country at 1,76,840 with 87,362 active cases.
  • Doubling time, which in the past 14 days was 13.3, has improved to 15.4 in the last three days. The fatality rate is 2.86%.

2. Nagaland Governor told to defer delimitation process

  • The Sumi Hoho, the main social organisation of the Sumi Naga community has asked the Nagaland Governor to pursue the State’s delimitation exercise only after the peace process with the extremist groups is settled.
  • The negotiating parties include the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN) or the Isak-Muivah faction of NSCN and the Naga National Political Groups, a conglomerate of seven other outfits. The talks have been on since mid-1997.

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. Which of the following statement/s is/are correct?
  1. The State Election Commissioner is appointed by the Governor.
  2. The conditions of service and tenure of office of the State Election Commissioner shall be such as the Governor may determine.
  3. The State Election Commissioner shall not be removed from his office except in like manner and on the like ground as a Judge of a High Court.


  1. 3 only
  2. 1 and 3 only
  3. 1, 2 and 3
  4. 2 and 3 only
Q2. Which of the following statement/s is/are correct?
  1. The decision of the Central Information Commission can be challenged in the Supreme Court.
  2. The Central Information Commission shall consist of the Chief Information Commissioner and not more than 2 Central Information Commissioners.
  3. Chief Information Commissioner shall hold office for a term of three years and shall not be eligible for reappointment.


  1. 1 only
  2. 1 and 2 only
  3. 2 and 3 only
  4. None of the above
Q3. Which of the following pairs of glacier and the state/UT is wrongly matched?
  1. Lonak glacier: Ladakh
  2. Kangto glacier: Arunachal Pradesh
  3. Zemu glacier: Sikkim
  4. Pindari glacier: Uttarakhand
Q4. Arrange the following battles fought by the British in chronological order:
  1. First Anglo-Mysore battle
  2. First Anglo-Maratha battle
  3. First Anglo-Afghan battle
  4. Anglo-Nepalese war


  1. 1, 2, 4, 3
  2. 1, 2, 3, 4
  3. 2, 1, 3, 4
  4. 2, 1, 4, 3

I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

  1. Enumerate the factors affecting Indian monsoon. Analyze the possible effect of climate change on the Indian monsoons and the concerns associated with it. (15 marks, 250 words)
  2. In the light of the locust infestations in India, discuss the causative factors for the unusually large locust infestation in 2020 and the concerns associated with it for India. (10 marks, 150 words)

Read the previous CNA here.

31 May 2020 CNA:- Download PDF Here

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