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11 September, 2019

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Paper Topics Subject
GS-II Market Intervention Price Scheme
United Nation Human Rights Council (UNHRC)
Bombay Blood Group
One year after ‘Navtej Johar’, imagining an equality law
GS-III Shades of Green
GS-II :
Market Intervention Price Scheme

GS-II: Market Intervention Price Scheme

News

  • Kashmir’s famed apple is battling to get exported outside the State this year as militants are campaigning against the fruit’s trade.
  • The government is planning to procure almost 12 lakh metric tonnes of apple this season, under the MISP, with the help of the National Agriculture Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED).

About the Market Intervention Price Scheme:

  • MIP is a price support mechanism implemented on the request of State Governments for procurement of perishable and horticultural commodities in the event of a fall in market prices.
  • The Scheme is implemented when there is at least 10% increase in production or 10% decrease in the ruling rates over the previous normal year.
  • MIP works in a similar fashion to Minimum Support Price based procurement mechanism for food grains, but is an adhoc mechanism.
  • Its objective is to protect the growers of these horticultural/agricultural commodities from making distress sale in the event of bumper crop during the peak arrival period when prices fall to very low level.
  • Thus it provides remunerative prices to the farmers in case of glut in production and fall in prices.

Implementation of MIS:

  • The Department of Agriculture & Cooperation is implementing the scheme.
  • Under MIP, funds are not allocated to the States.
  • Instead, central share of losses as per the guidelines of MIP is released to the State Governments/UTs, for which MIP has been approved, based on specific proposals received from them.

Procurement:

  • Under the Scheme, a pre-determined quantity at a fixed Market Intervention Price (MIP) is procured by NAFED as the Central agency and the agencies designated by the state government for a fixed period or till the prices are stabilized above the MIP whichever is earlier.
  • The area of operation is restricted to the concerned state only.
  • The MIS has been implemented in case of commodities like apples, kinnoo/malta, garlic, oranges, galgal, grapes, mushrooms, clove, black pepper, pineapple, ginger, red-chillies, coriander seed etc.

 

 

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GS-II :
United Nation Human Rights Council (UNHRC)

GS-II: United Nation Human Rights Council (UNHRC)

News

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has expressed concern over the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam, and the communications blackout and detention of political leaders in Jammu and Kashmir.

About UNHRC:

  • UNHRC is an inter governmental body setup in 2006 with an aim of protecting and promoting  human rights in worldwide as well as investigating alleged human rights.
  • It is made up of 47 member states, which are selected by the UN General Assembly on a staggered basis each year for three-year-long terms.
  • Members meet around three times a year to debate human rights issues and pass non-binding resolutions and recommendations by majority vote.
  • The council also carries out the Universal Periodic Review of all UN member states, which allows civil society groups to bring accusations of human rights violations in member states to the attention of the UN.

Meeting:

  • The Human Rights Council holds no fewer than three regular sessions a year for a total of atleast 10 weeks.
  • The meeting takes place for four weeks in March for 3 weeks in June ,and another 3 weeks of September.
  • The sessions are held at the UN office in Geneva, Switzerland.

Membership:

The council is made up of 47 member states, which are selected by UNGA through direct or secret ballot. The General Assembly takes into the account of contribution of the candidate states of the promotion and protection of human rights, as well as their voluntary pledges and commitment in this regard.

Seats of the Council of the State:

African States:13 seats

Asia-Pacific States-13 seats

Latin American and Caribeean States-7 seats

Western European States-7 seats

Eastern European States-6 seats

 

 

 

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GS-II :
Bombay Blood Group

GS-III: Bombay Blood Group

News

  • Over the last two weeks, the “Bombay blood group”, a rare blood type, has been at the centre of attention in Mumbai’s healthcare scene.
  • Demand for the blood type has coincidentally spiked at hospitals, but supply has been scarce.

Bombay blood group

  • The four most common blood groups are A, B, AB and O.
  • The rare, Bombay blood group was first discovered in Mumbai (then Bombay) in 1952.
  • Each red blood cell has antigen over its surface, which helps determine which group it belongs to.
  • The Bombay blood group, also called hh, is deficient in expressing antigen H, meaning the RBC has no antigen H.

 

News

  • ???????Over the last two weeks, the “Bombay blood group”, a rare blood type, has been at the centre of attention in Mumbai’s healthcare scene.
  • Demand for the blood type has coincidentally spiked at hospitals, but supply has been scarce.

Bombay blood group

  • The four most common blood groups are A, B, AB and O.
  • The rare, Bombay blood group was first discovered in Mumbai (then Bombay) in 1952.
  • Each red blood cell has antigen over its surface, which helps determine which group it belongs to.
  • The Bombay blood group, also called hh, is deficient in expressing antigen H, meaning the RBC has no antigen H.
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GS-II :
One year after ‘Navtej Johar’, imagining an equality law

GS-II: One year after ‘Navtej Johar’, imagining an equality law.

News

One year since the SC judgment in Navtej Johar v. Union of India on Sec 377. We have moved from a society where transgender, intersex, lesbian, gay, bisexual and gender non-conforming persons were treated as criminals to constitutional recognition of rights to sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.

Impact of the judgment:

  • The recognition of these rights impacts not only LGBTI persons, but everyone as it protects out rights of self-expression, equality, and autonomy.
  • It laid the ground for stronger equality recognition : Judgment in the Joseph Shine case decriminalising adultery (2018) and the judgment in the Sabarimala case recognising the rights of women to enter religious shrines (2018).
  • It also led to the decriminalising of same-sex intercourse in other jurisdictions such as the High Court of Botswana and inspired a constitutional challenge to Section 377A in Singapore.

Challenges:

  • Decriminalization is the first step towards the recognition of equal rights. Navtej decision has to be followed by positive steps for equality.
  • Transgender persons still face a number of legal barriers and LGBTI people continue to face discrimination, exclusion, abuse, and harassment at work, school, health care settings and in public places.
  • We still do not have equality and anti-discrimination law to protect persons from discrimination on different protected grounds.
  • Even the only close statute, Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016. only addresses discrimination against persons with disabilities in the public sector and does not address the private sector.
  • Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 and the Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955 make some discriminatory acts criminal offenses but do not provide civil remedies such as damages for acts of discrimination.
  • The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 is limited to sexual harassment at work.
  • The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2019 addresses only transgender and intersex persons’ rights. The rights of equality and non-discrimination on the ground of sexual orientation are not covered.

What’s Next

  • Overarching legislation is needed to guarantee equality to all persons on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, sex, caste, religion, age, disability, marital status, pregnancy, nationality, and other grounds.
  • The law should impose obligations of equality and non-discrimination on all persons, public and private, and in the areas of education, employment, healthcare, land and housing and access to public places.
  • Supreme Court comes held in its privacy judgment in K.S. Puttuswamy v. Union of India (2017) that equality and liberty cannot be separated, and equality encompasses the inclusion of dignity and basic freedoms.

Conclusion

Situations like what we seen  in J&K show us that we need an equality law that not only addresses discrimination against individual but also addresses structural forms of discrimination and exclusion.

 

 

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GS-III :
Shades of Green

GS-III: Shades of Green

News

Prime Minister announced that India will scale up its ambition to restore degraded land at the ongoing 14th CoP of the United Nation’s Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

Impact:

  • The step is significant for India’s global environmental commitments.
  • This move will now restore 26 million hectares by 2030. That is 5 million hectares more than what is pledged at the Paris Climate Change Meet.
  • This also acknowledges the growing crisis of desertification. According to ISRO’s Desertification and Land Degradation Atlas, nearly 30% of land in the country is degraded.

 

Landscape restoration

  • ???????The plan is to reverse degradation by adopting a landscape-restoration approach.
  • This needs a shift from plantation-oriented afforestation schemes to recognising the importance of ecosystem services of land and forests such as watershed management, biodiversity conservation and improving soil health.

Increasing forest cover

  • Over the past two decades, the Forest Survey of India has reported a consistent increase in the country’s forested area.
  • But the question of how forests have not been impacted by pressure on land is not answered.
  • The answer lies in a methodological problem with the FSI’s audits: it uses satellite images to identify green cover as forest and does not discriminate between natural forests and plantations.

Land degradation and climate change

  • An IPCC report last month has shown the links between global warming and land degradation.
  • Climate change not only exacerbates land degradation processes but it becomes a dominant pressure that introduces degradation pathways in ecosystems.

CONCLUSION

India’s environment establishment now needs to re-evaluate the methods to measure the country’s green cover.

 

 

 

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