Download the BYJU'S Exam Prep App for free IAS preparation videos & tests - Download the BYJU'S Exam Prep App for free IAS preparation videos & tests -

24 Nov 2022: UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis

CNA 24 Nov 2022:- Download PDF Here

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS 1 Related
GEOGRAPHY
1. Are El Niño-La Niña weather patterns changing?
B. GS 2 Related
C. GS 3 Related
ECONOMY
1. SEBI’s plans to tackle market rumours
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
SOCIAL JUSTICE
1. India’s malnutrition problem
GOVERNANCE
1. Right to Information in India
ECONOMY
1. Milk Inflation
F. Prelims Facts
G. Tidbits
1. ISRO to launch Oceansat-3, 8 nano satellites
2. India test fires Agni-3 nuclear capable ballistic missile
3. MHA takes up with MEA influx of Kuki-Chins
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions
FIP Magazine

Category: GOVERNANCE

1. Right to Information in India

Syllabus: Important Aspects of Governance, Transparency & Accountability

Mains: Underlying issues related to the Right to Information in India

Context: Recent examples from the Central Information Commission cases show India’s declining transparency regime.

Introduction

  • The primary duty of the Central Information Commission (CIC) is to decide the disclosure or the non-disclosure of information. 
  • Indian citizens can file applications under the Right to Information Act with any public body and are guaranteed a reply from the public information officer of that public body within 30 days. 
  • In case of no reply or dissatisfaction with the response, the citizen can file an appeal at the departmental level and then a second and final appeal with the Information Commission. 
  • Each State has its own State Information Commission to deal with second appeals concerning State bodies.
  • The CIC had passed orders seeking transparency in many cases of public importance.
    • It pronounced that political parties were under the RTI Act’s ambit, and hence accountable to the public.
    • It ordered the disclosure of the current Prime Minister’s educational qualifications.
    • CIC also ordered the disclosure of Reserve Bank of India’s list of willful defaulters of loans. 

Recent hurdles for RTI in India: 

  • Against the Principle of Natural Justice: The RTI Act (Amendment) Act, 2019 gave the Union government the power to fix the terms and the service conditions of the Information Commissioners both at the central and state levels. By vesting excessive powers with the central government, this amendment has hampered the autonomy of CIC.
  • The Commission has adopted a new way of delegating its mandate to decide cases to the Ministry before it. 
    • In most cases, the Ministries reiterate their earlier stand of non-disclosure, most often under vague grounds of national interest after which the CIC refuses to accept any further challenge to such orders, therefore, refusing to do its duty of deciding the cases.
    • For instance, CIC refused to hear the Internet Freedom Foundation’s challenge to the fresh non-disclosure order passed by the Home Ministry in the phone tapping case. 
  • The commission acts against the rules of natural justice which states that “no one should be a judge in their own cause” by allowing the very Ministry that stands accused of violating the RTI Act to act as the judge in their own cause and decide whether a disclosure is necessary.
  • Backlog and Delay in Disposal of Cases: One of the reasons the RTI Act was considered to be revolutionary was that a response had to be provided in a fixed time, failing which the government official concerned would be penalised. 
    • Unlike court cases, RTI matters do not involve complex legal arguments and are fairly simple to adjudicate.
    • However, this time-bound nature of the Act suffers due to various reasons such as insufficient number of Information Commissioners, poor quality, incomplete and inaccurate information and Ineffective record management systems and procedures to collect information from field offices..
  • For instance, in a case related to the disclosure of non-performing assets and top defaulters of a cooperative bank, the matter was listed out-of-turn to issue a “stay” order against the bank’s First Appellate Authority’s order for disclosure. 
    • A stay order is unheard of and there is no provision in the RTI Act for the same.

Read more on the Right to Information.

Nut GrafThe Information commission in India has acted as a strong proponent of transparency in public life. Recent examples from CIC cases do not instil confidence about India’s information regime. RTI is a powerful tool in the hands of the citizens and diluting it will weaken democracy and constitutional values. 
Category: ECONOMY

1. Milk Inflation

Syllabus: Food Security; Inflation

Mains: Impact of Milk inflation on Indian households

Context: Mother Dairy, a leading milk supplier in New Delhi has hiked the price of full cream milk four times in 2022.

Inflation of Milk and Milk Products

  • A litre of milk in New Delhi now costs ₹64 after Mother Dairy hikes the price for the fourth time in 2022.  
  • Recently, the Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, which sells milk under the brand Amul, raised the price of full cream milk by ₹2. 
  • The Tamil Nadu Co-operative Milk Producers’ Federation, also raised the price of full cream milk by ₹12 a litre, which makes the price of one litre ₹60.
  • Milk inflation accelerated to 7.7% in October 2022, the highest level seen in 7.5 years.
  • Inflation of ice cream accelerated to 10.5% whereas curd inflation was 7.6% in October 2022.
image 10

Image Source: The Hindu

  • In November 2022, the average price of a litre of milk in India was close to ₹55 against ₹42 in November 2017. 

Uneven Rise:

  • The rise in the price of milk was not uniform across all cities. 
  • The average prices increased mostly in the northern, western and north-eastern cities of India while there were mild increases in milk prices in eastern cities.
  • The average prices did not rise much in the southern cities of Chennai, Bengaluru and Ernakulam except Hyderabad.
    • Hyderabad showed a sharp rise in average milk prices.
  • The average price of milk in November 2022 was lowest in Chennai at ₹40 per litre. 
    • In Ahmedabad, the price was ₹58 per litre and in Lucknow, it was ₹62 per litre.
    • It crossed the ₹65 per litre-mark in many northeastern cities such as Guwahati and Agartala.

Reasons behind the rise in milk prices:

  • The cost of operation and production of milk has increased.
  • The cost of cattle feed such as maize, cottonseed oil cake, de-oiled rice bran and other feed ingredients has also increased.
  • Given the increase in input costs, milk-purchasing member unions boosted farmers’ prices by 8 to 9% on average annually.
  • Dairies are forced to pass on price hikes to consumers as procurement costs rise in an atmosphere where inflation is already a problem.

Impact of Milk Inflation

  • An average urban household spends ₹284 on milk per month. 
  • The poorest 5% of households spend only ₹86 on milk and milk products in a month, whereas the richest 5% spend ₹598 — a gap of over ₹500. 
  • Only 52%-62% of members in the poorest 20% households consumed milk or curd, whereas 86%-91% did so in the richest 20% of households.
    • Thus, the price rise will have a greater impact on poorer households, which already have a high share of those who have not been drinking milk.
  • There is also a gap in milk consumption between men and women, especially in poorer households. The price rise will disproportionately impact women in poorer households more as they will be the first to give up drinking milk to compensate for the price hike, widening the inequality further.
  • Higher milk procurement prices could also hurt companies that make bakery products or food items that use milk or milk solids.

Read more on Food Inflation.

Nut Graf: Inflation of milk and milk products has increased to a 7.5 year high even though India’s overall retail inflation came down in October 2022. The price rise is varied across regions and disproportionately impacts women and poorer households.

F. Prelims Facts

Nothing here for today!!!

G. Tidbits

1. ISRO to launch Oceansat-3, 8 nano satellites

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will launch Earth Observation Satellite – 06 (EOS-06) and eight nanosatellites on November 26 through Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C54) from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota.
  • The EOS-6 is a third-generation satellite in the Oceansat series of satellites and is being launched to provide continuity to the services of Oceansat-2 spacecraft with improved payload specifications and applications.
  • The eight nanosatellites include: ISRO Nano Satellite-2 for Bhutan (INS-2B), Anand, Astrocast (four satellites), and two Thybolt satellites that will be launched into two different Sun-synchronous polar orbits. 
  • The INS-2B spacecraft will have two payloads namely NanoMx and APRS-Digipeater. 
    • NanoMx is a multi-spectral optical imaging payload developed by the Space Applications Centre in Ahmedabad.
    • The APRS-Digipeater payload has been jointly developed by the Department of Information Technology and Telecom-Bhutan and the UR Rao Satellite Centre.

2. India test fires Agni-3 nuclear capable ballistic missile

  • India undertook the successful launch of the Agni-3 Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile from A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Island in Odisha recently.
  • The test was part of routine user training launches carried out under the aegis of the Strategic Forces Command.
  • The launch was carried out for a predetermined range and all the operational parameters of the system were examined.
  • The Agni series of missiles are considered the backbone of India’s nuclear weapons delivery which also includes the Prithvi short-range ballistic missiles and fighter aircraft. 
  • Further, India has also completed its nuclear triad and operationalised its second strike capability, with the nuclear ballistic missile submarine INS Arihant undertaking deterrence patrols.

Read about: Types of Missiles of India

3. MHA takes up with MEA influx of Kuki-Chins

  • Over 270 members of the Kuki-Chin community from Bangladesh who have entered Mizoram recently are being considered “officially displaced persons” in State government records because India does not have a law on refugees.
    • Kuki-Chin community has a population of around 3.5 lakh and the Bangladesh security forces are fighting against the insurgent group Kuki-Chin National Army (KNA).
  • The Ministry of Home Affairs has said that the issue was being discussed with the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) as according to the Ministry of Home Affairs, foreign nationals who enter the country without valid travel documents are considered illegal immigrants.
  • The group of  Kuki-Chin community members, which included infants and women, approached a Border Security Force (BSF) patrol base on the Bangladesh-Mizoram border and were allowed to enter India on humanitarian grounds.
  • According to officials, more such refugees are expected in the coming days and about four schools have been turned into shelters so far following the State government’s order.

Read more about – Kuki Tribes Insurgency.

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. MAARG portal was launched under which of the following initiatives/schemes/projects 
of the Government of India? (Level – Medium)
  1. Bharatmala Pariyojana
  2. Startup India
  3. Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT)
  4. KUSUM Scheme
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: b

Explanation:

  • MAARG Portal is a National Mentorship Platform by Startup India to help and guide new start-ups to grow and flourish.
Q2. Which of the following pairs is/are correctly matched? (Level – Medium)

Bilateral Military Exercise                 Participant Nations

  1. Mitra Shakti                                     India – Nepal
  2. Garuda Shakti                                 India – Indonesia
  3. Shakti Exercise                                India – Sri Lanka
  4. Vajra Prahar                                    India – USA

Options:

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

Answer: c

Explanation:

  • Pair 1 is not correct, Mitra Shakti exercise is a bilateral joint military exercise between the armies of India and Sri Lanka.
  • Pair 2 is correct, Garuda Shakti is a bilateral exercise between special forces of the armies of India and Indonesia.
  • Pair 3 is not correct, Shakti Exercise is a bilateral exercise between the armies of India and France.
  • Pair 4 is correct, Vajra Prahar is a joint military exercise between India and the US.
Q3. Consider the following statements with respect to the Sikh Guru - Guru Tegh 
Bahadur: (Level – Difficult)
  1. He composed the Japji Sahib.
  2. He helped Raja Ram Singh to broker a truce with the Ahom king.
  3. He founded langar or the system of community meals.
  4. He was also called Tyag Mal.

How many of the given statements is/are INCORRECT?

  1. One statement only
  2. Two statements only
  3. Three statements only
  4. All four statements
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: b

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is not correct, Japji Sahib was composed by Guru Nanak.
  • Statement 2 is correct, In 1668 in Assam, Guru Tegh Bahadur was able to preach a treaty between the King of Ahom and Raja Ram Singh of Amber who was sent there by Aurangzeb.
  • Statement 3 is not correct, “Langar” refers to the community kitchen in a Gurdwara where food is served to all the visitors without any distinction. 
    • The institution of Langar was first started by Guru Nanak.
  • Statement 4 is correct, Guru Tegh Bahadur was named Tyaga Mal at birth.
Q4. The terms ‘Telstar’, ‘Azteca’, ‘Al Rihla’ were seen in the news in the context 
of?(Level – Medium)
  1. Winter Olympics
  2. FIFA World Cup
  3. ICC Cricket World Cup
  4. Hockey World Cup
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: b

Explanation:

  • Telstar, Azteca and Al Rihla are all names of the official footballs used in different FIFA World Cups.
Q5. Which of the following gives ‘Global Gender Gap Index’ ranking to the countries 
of the World? (Level – Medium) PYQ-2017
  1. World Economic Forum
  2. UN Human Rights Council
  3. UN Women
  4. World Health Organization
CHECK ANSWERS:-

Answer: a

Explanation:

  • The Global Gender Gap Index ranking is published by the World Economic Forum (WEF).

I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions

  1. Nothing empowers the citizens like the free flow of information. Elaborate. (250 words; 15 marks) (GS-2; Polity)
  2. How do El Nino and La Nina impact the Indian monsoon patterns? (250 words; 15 marks) (GS-1; Geography)

Read the previous CNA here.

CNA 24 Nov 2022:- Download PDF Here

Leave a Comment

Your Mobile number and Email id will not be published.

*

*