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Daily Current Affairs IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 21st October 2019
Published on Oct. 21, 2019, 6:24 p.m.

IAS UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 21st October 2019

Archives


(PRELIMS + MAINS FOCUS)


Anthrax

Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains II - Health

In News

  • Veterinarians have confirmed anthrax as the cause of death of two Asiatic water buffaloes in central Assam’s Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary.
  • Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary has the highest concentration of one-horned rhinos in the world.

About Anthrax

  • Anthrax is a serious infectious disease caused by gram-positive, rod-shaped bacteria known as Bacillus anthracis which can be found naturally in soil.
  • It is characterised by blisters around swellings on the skin, chest pain, vomiting, diarrhoea and fever. However, Anthrax is not contagious.
  • It commonly affects domestic and wild animals around the world. Cattle, sheep, goats, antelope, and deer can become infected when they breathe in or ingest spores in contaminated soil, plants, or water.
  • People can get sick with anthrax if they come in contact with infected animals or contaminated animal products. Contact with anthrax can cause severe illness in both humans and animals.

National Tiger Conservation Authority(NTCA)

Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains III–Environment Conservation

In News

  • NTCA has red-flagged the Madhya Pradesh government’s move to increase tourism activities inside the State’s tiger reserves in violation of the existing guidelines
  • According to a latest report by the Environment Ministry, India has 2,967 tigers, with 526 of them in Madhya Pradesh alone — the highest in the country.
  • There are six tiger reserves in Madhya Pradesh — Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Panna, Satpura, Sanjay-Dubri and Pench.

About NTCA

  • It is a statutory body under the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change constituted under enabling provisions of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, as amended in 2006, for strengthening tiger conservation, as per powers and functions assigned to it under the said Act.
  • The National Tiger Conservation Authority is set up under the Chairmanship of the Minister for Environment and Forests.
  • Project Tiger aims to aid and facilitate the breeding of tigers within a safe environment and transport the tigers to other parks to increase the tiger population across its habitats. In addition, Project Tiger also takes up initiatives to improve the vegetation in the park, to facilitate the availability of prey for the tigers.
  • NTCA used an app/system called MSTrlPES, to monitor and record the tiger population to release the census in 2019.

LIVER TRANSPLANT REGISTRY

Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains II - Health

In News

  • India’s first voluntary liver transplant registry that started on August 15 has picked up pace.
  • Initiated by the Liver Transplantation Society of India, the registry aims to collate national data of the procedures and their outcomes.
  • In a span of a little over two months, it has received data of 74 transplants carried out by 11 hospitals across six States.
  • Nearly 2,000 liver transplants are carried out in the country annually, highest in the world, yet there is no India-specific data. This leaves doctors to take help from the evolved U.S. and the U.K. registries.
  • Hospitals from Delhi NCR, Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu have voluntarily reported their transplants to the registry. More hospitals are in various stages of signing up and by December.

INDIAN PENAL CODE (IPC)

Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains II – Indian Polity

In News

  • The Home Ministry has constituted two committees comprising legal luminaries to overhaul the IPC introduced by the British in 1860.
  • After it was framed, the IPC has never been amended in totality. Some additions and deletions have been made.
  • Rebooting the code introduced by the British in 1860 was considered as necessary as it is primarily based on the spirit of “master and servant”

Do You Know?

  • The Indian Penal Code (IPC) is the official criminal code of India. It is a comprehensive code intended to cover all substantive aspects of criminal law.
  • The code was drafted in 1860 on the recommendations of first law commission of India (Chairmanship of Lord Macaulay) established in 1834 under the Charter Act of 1833. The code came into operation from 1862.
  • The Malimath Committee of 2003 is related to the issue of reforms in the IPC.

India - Maldives

Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains II – International Relations

In News

  • India and the Maldives will take forward several pending measures to promote defence cooperation in the next few months, these include
  • The agreement for lease of a Dornier aircraft for maritime surveillance
  • Bringing the Maldives under India’s coastal radar chain network and 
  • A broad-based humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) exercise.
  • India had gifted the Maldives two Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH) in 2013 and each was operated by the Indian Coast Guard and the Indian Navy. These were of great service to Maldives as it was used extensively for medical evacuation and search and rescue operations.
  • In the aftermath of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, India began setting up the coastal radar chain network to monitor the movement of traffic on the high seas. Mauritius, the Seychelles and Sri Lanka have already been part of the network

About DORNIER

  • The Dornier Do-228 was designed and developed by Dornier GmbH (Germany-France) in the late 1970s
  • Hindustan Aeronautics Limited holds the license to locally produce the Do-228 aircraft. Since 1983, HAL has produced more than 125 Do-228 aircraft.
  • The 19 seater HAL - DO - 228 aircraft is a highly versatile multi-purpose light transport aircraft
  • It has been developed specifically to meet the manifold requirements of utility and commuter transport, third level services and air-taxi operations, coast guard duties and maritime surveillance.

Bhashan Char island

Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains II – International Relations

In News

  • Thousands of Rohingya living in Bangladesh refugee camps have agreed to move to a Bhashan Char island located in the Bay of Bengal
  • Rights groups have warned the island, which emerged from the sea only about two decades ago, might not be able to withstand violent storms during the annual monsoon season.
  • In the past half a century, powerful cyclones have killed hundreds of thousands of people in the Meghna river estuary where the island is located.
  • Dhaka has long wanted to move 1,00,000 refugees to the muddy silt islet, saying it would take pressure off the overcrowded border camps where almost a million Rohingya live.
  • Some 7,40,000 Rohingya fled Myanmar in August 2017 in the face of a military crackdown, joining 2,00,000 refugees already in makeshift tent settlements at Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar.

PettaThullal

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains GS-I - Culture

In News

  • PettaThullal, the ritualistic sacred dance to celebrate the victory of good over evil in the legend of Lord Ayyappa who killed the demon princess Mahishi, which denotes the beginning of the last leg of the annual Sabarimala pilgrimage season.
  • Blanket ban has been mooted on chemical powder, the bespattering of which constitutes an indispensable part of the PettaThullal ritual.
  • A study by the Kerala State Pollution Control Board (PCB) has pointed to the presence of hazardous metals, including lead, arsenic, and cadmium, in this powder. 
  • Besides causing skin troubles, it pollutes the soil and often gets washed into the waterbodies where the chances of these potent chemicals entering the human body are very high
  • Plans are afoot to promote organic varieties of the brightly coloured powder as an alternative to chemical powder.

(MAINS FOCUS)


BREXIT

TOPIC: General Studies 2:

  • Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests
  • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian Diaspora.

New Brexit deal

Context:

  • Despite the euphoric reception to the fresh terms of Britain’s withdrawal from the EU agreed on Thursday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was forced to seek an extension to the October 31 exit deadline. 
  • The House of Commons voted for an amendment making approval for the text conditional on Parliament passing legislation to ratify the treaty before Britain leaves the EU.
  • The failure to clearly back the deal triggered a law forcing Mr. Johnson to ask EU leaders to delay Brexit for a third time

Why?

  • Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), has opposed agreement — that it would undermine the constitutional integrity of the U.K. 
  • It is however true that the new deal would avoid a hard border in the Irish Sea, one that would have separated the north and south of the island of Ireland, thus endangering the 1998 Good Friday agreement.
[caption id="attachment_51555" align="aligncenter" width="477"]Daily Current Affairs IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 21st October 2019 Daily Current Affairs IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 21st October 2019[/caption]

Img :https://media.businessinsider.com/images/59326a474cb1e4221247dc8f-640-418.jpg

Brexit:

  • Brexit - British exit - refers to the UK leaving the EU.
  • Brexit is the scheduled withdrawal of the United Kingdom (UK) from the European Union (EU). 
  • Following a June 2016 referendum, in which 51.9% of participating voters voted to leave, the UK government formally announced the country's withdrawal in March 2017, starting a two-year process that was due to conclude with the UK withdrawing on 29 March 2019. 
  • As the UK parliament thrice voted against the negotiated withdrawal agreement, that deadline has been extended twice, and is currently 31 October 2019.
  • The 'Benn Act' that passed in Parliament requires the government to seek a third extension if no agreement is reached before 19 October.

What is the European Union?

  • The EU is an economic and political union involving 28 European countries. It allows free trade and free movement of people to live and work in whichever country they choose.
  • The UK joined in 1973 (when it was known as the European Economic Community). If the UK leaves, it would be the first member state to withdraw from the EU.

Why hasn’t UK left?

  • Brexit was originally due to happen on 29 March 2019. That was two years after then Prime Minister Theresa May triggered Article 50 - the formal process to leave - and kicked off negotiations. But the Brexit date has been delayed twice.
  • A deal was agreed in November 2018, but MPs rejected it three times.

What is the new Brexit deal?

  • The new deal replaces the backstop with new customs arrangements. 
  • Under the plan, the whole of the UK would leave the customs union. At this point, the UK would be free to sign and implement its own trade agreements with countries around the world.
  • But Northern Ireland would also remain an entry point into the EU's customs zone. 
  • The UK would not apply tariffs to products entering Northern Ireland, as long as they were not destined to be sent across the border into the Republic of Ireland. 
  • Northern Ireland would continue to follow EU regulations for agrifood and industrial goods.
  • After four years, the Northern Ireland Assembly would have the opportunity to vote on whether Northern Ireland should continue the arrangement. 

What after Brexit?

  • EU will start carrying out checks on British goods. 
  • This could lead to delays at ports, such as Dover. Some fear that this could lead to traffic bottlenecks, disrupting supply routes and damaging the economy.
  • If the pound falls sharply in response to no deal and there are significant delays at ports, like Dover, it could affect the price and availability of some foods.
  •  There are also concerns over potential shortages of medicines.

Positive effects of Brexit in India:

  • To reset legal terms: Brexit is an opportunity for India to reset the legal terms of its trade with the UK and EU, at the multilateral level, and through free trade agreements. 
  • Students friendly: Before Brexit, British universities were forced to offer scholarships and subsidies to the citizens of the UK and EU. Brexit frees up funds for the other students and more Indian students might be able to get scholarships.
  • Increases tourism: Reduction in pound value will reduce travelling cost to the UK and will make it a good travel destination.
  • Huge investment: Brexit will help strengthen our ties with Britain because India’s focus on innovation and entrepreneurship still makes it an attractive destination for outsourcing and investment.
  • Goods and services: According to the UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT) figures, total trade in goods and services between the UK and India was 18 billion pounds in 2017, a 15 per cent increase from 2016.
  • Current account deficit: Lower commodity prices, crude oil prices may help narrowing current account deficit (CAD)
  • Trading partners: The UK and the EU are losing trading partners in the process. So they will both be looking for replacements. Here, India can play a crucial role. We may see enhanced cooperation in segments like technology, cyber security, defence production and finance. 

Negative effects of Brexit in India:

  • Short term effects: Automobile, Pharmacy and IT might be the most affected. NASSCOM has predicted that the effect of Brexit will be felt on the $108 Billion Indian IT sector in the short term.
  • Automobile industry: In the automobile industry, Brexit may lead to reduction in sales and companies that derive good revenues of profits from Britain could get hurt majorly.
  • Disruptions: Indian companies would need to recalibrate European operations, like setting up an additional operating company within European Union. This means short term disruptions will have a financial impact, as also take up management time.
  • Immigration: Because of the large number of immigrants from EU, UK has restricted immigrants from other parts of the world, which had an impact on Indians.
  • Restrictions: Post Brexit, immigration into UK of Indians may not become easier as the UK wants to place quantitative restrictions on total number of immigrants, and only a few Indians with special skills may find it easier to work in the UK.

Conclusion

  • India should re-negotiate with the UK and EU the World Trade Organization Schedules of Concessions, for both goods and services, should resume its FTA discussions with the EU, and should prepare to launch FTA talks with the UK.

Connecting the dots:

  • Britain might avoid a no-deal exit, but it will have to grapple with the costs of leaving the EU. Analyse

MONEY LAUNDERING

TOPIC: General Studies 3:

  • Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention

Custodial interrogation & INX media case

Context:

  • In P. Chidambaram v. Directorate of Enforcement (2019), the Supreme Court explained that “grant of anticipatory bail at the stage of investigation may frustrate the investigating agency in interrogating the accused and in collecting the useful information and also the materials which might have been concealed..
  • If our liberty is to be protected, we the people must raise once again a formidable “flash flood of demands” against custodial interrogation (i.e., in the context of this discussion, arrest solely for the purposes of interrogation) — not only in courts, but also in public discourse — because custodial interrogation inherently, invariably and unavoidably violates our fundamental right against self-incrimination and our right to silence
[caption id="attachment_51556" align="aligncenter" width="354"]Custodial interrogation & INX media case Daily Current Affairs IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 21st October 2019[/caption]

Img:https://smedia2.intoday.in/btmt/images/stories/p_chidambaran_karti_660_082119103859.jpg

Background:

  • The INX Media case refers to an ongoing high-profile money laundering investigation in India.
  •  It involves allegation of irregularities in foreign exchange clearances given to INX Media group for receiving overseas investment in 2007. P. Chidambaram was union finance minister at the time. 
  • His son Karti Chidambaram has been implicated by the investigating agencies.
  • The case dates back to 2007 when INX Media applied for clearance with the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) on March 15 that year.
  •  INX Media had sought this approval in order to operate and broadcast a bouquet of channels including Hindi entertainment channel, and multiple vernacular entertainment channels. 
  • According to the CBI, the Board in its meeting on 18 March, 2007 approved an FDI inflow of Rs 4.62 crore against INX Media. 
  • It did not, however, approve the downstream investment by INX Media in INX News.  

CBI report:

  • INX Media  deliberately and in violation of the conditions of the approval (i) made a downstream investment to the extent of 26% in the capital of INX News Limited without the specific approval of FIPB which included indirect foreign investment by the same foreign investors 
  • generated more than Rs 305 crores Foreign Direct Investment in INX Media (P) Limited against the approved foreign inflow of Rs 4.62 crores

Constitutionality: 

  • Article 20(3) of the Constitution says, , “No person accused of any offence shall be compelled to be a witness against himself”.
  •  Section 161(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code implements the constitutional right against self-incrimination: “[Every person who the police is authorised to examine orally] is bound to answer truly all questions relating to such case put to him by [the police officer legally authorised to examine him], other than questions the answers to which would have a tendency to expose him to a criminal charge or to a penalty or forfeiture” 
  • Such a person has the right to remain silent to avoid incriminating himself. Our right to silence thus flows from the right against self-incrimination.

Why right against self-incrimination?

  • In Selvi v. Karnataka (2010), then Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan explained that “the underlying rationale [of the right against self-incrimination] broadly corresponds with two objectives — firstly, that of ensuring reliability of the statements made by an accused, and secondly, ensuring that such statements are made voluntarily.
  • The premise is that involuntary statements are more likely to mislead the judge and the prosecutor, thereby resulting in a miscarriage of justice.
  • In Nandini Satpathy vs. P.L. Dani, “Article 20(3) is a human article, a guarantee of dignity and integrity and of inviolability of the person and refusal to convert an adversary system into an inquisitorial scheme in the antagonistic ante-chamber of a police station.
  • 1966 U.S. Supreme Court judgment in Miranda v. Arizona “The privilege against self-incrimination, which has had a long and expansive historical development, is the essential mainstay of our adversary system, and guarantees to the individual the ‘right to remain silent unless he chooses to speak in the unfettered exercise of his own will,’

Conclusion:

  • Convictions of innocent people based on unreliable evidence obtained through coercive custody would have little impact on improving public safety, as the actual wrongdoers would likely still be on the loose. 
  • It will encourage the police to reject self-incrimination as a tool of investigation and improve their ability to find evidence through modern, scientific and humane means.
  • It will reduce the scope for arbitrary power and strengthen liberty.

Connecting the dots:

  • Very important persons of yesterday caught in the criminal investigation coils of today. Critically Analyse
  • Abjuring custodial interrogation will improve public safety. Substantiate

(TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE)


Model questions: (You can now post your answers in comment section)

Note: 

  • Featured Comments and comments Up-voted by IASbaba are the “correct answers”.
  • IASbaba App users – Team IASbaba will provide correct answers in comment section. Kindly refer to it and update your answers.

Q.1)The term M-STRIPES’ is sometimes seen in the news in the context of

  1. Captive breeding of Wild Fauna
  2. Maintenance of Tiger Reserves
  3. Indigenous Satellite Navigation System
  4. Security of National Highways

Q.2)Consider the following statements about National Tiger Conservation Act

  1. It is a statutory body constituted under the provisions of Wildlife Protection Act, 1972
  2. It is set up under the Chairmanship of the Prime Minister of India

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Q.3)Consider the following statements about Indian Penal Code (IPC)

  1. The code was drafted on the recommendations of first law commission of India under the Chairmanship of Lord Macaulay
  2. The Malimath Committee of 2003 is related to the issue of reforms in the IPC.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Q.4) Consider the following statements about India liver transplant registry

  1. It is initiated by NITI Aayog
  2. The registry aims to collate national data of the liver transplant procedures and their outcomes.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

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