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11 Oct, 2022

26 Min Read

International Girl Child Day

GS-I : Social issues Women

International Girl Child Day

International Girl Child Day is observed annually on October 11th.

Why International Girl Child Day is celebrated on Oct 11?

  • For the first time in history, an action plan to improve the rights of girls was suggested in the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.
  • The International Day of the Girl Child was established by Resolution 66/170 of the United Nations General Assembly in 2011.
  • "Our time is now—our rights, our future" is the theme for 2022.


  • The day is commemorated to recognize the rights of girls and the particular difficulties they face globally.
  • The need to address the issues girls confront, support girls' empowerment, and ensure that their human rights are upheld are all highlighted by the International Day of the Girl Child.
  • Additionally, all 17 of the Sustainable Development Goals are based on gender equality and the empowerment of women.
  • The fifth of the 17 SDGs included in the Sustainable Development Agenda is the achievement of gender equality.
  • Only through safeguarding the rights of women and girls across all goals can justice, inclusion, economic progress, and a sustainable environment be attained.

What is the situation with Indian girls?

  • According to the National Crime Records Bureau's (NCRB) most current report, "Accidental Deaths & Suicides in India Report 2021,".
  • Crime against children increased after dropping in 2020 as a result of Covid-related restrictions, surpassing pre-pandemic levels.
  • 1.49 lakh of these cases were reported in 2021, an increase from 1.48 lakh in 2019.
  • The NCRB's data, which is notably bleak for India's eastern states:
  • Sikkim, Kerala, Meghalaya, Haryana, and Mizoram are the states with the highest rates of sexual offences against minors.
  • Along with Maharashtra, MP, and UP, West Bengal and Odisha are among the top five states that account for 47.1% of all crimes against children nationwide.
  • In West Bengal alone, there were 9,523 cases of crimes committed against minors in 2021.

Girl Child Issues:

Female Infanticide and Foeticide

  • One of the highest rates of female foeticide in the world is found in India.
  • In the age range 0–6 years, the Census of 2011 revealed the lowest sex ratio ever of 914, with 3 million missing girls, down from 78.8 million in 2001 to 75.8 million in 2011.

Child Marriage:

  • At least 1.5 million females under the age of 18 get married in India every year. About 16% of teenage girls between the ages of 15 and 19 are now married.
  • Despite a modest decrease, child marriage has decreased from 27% in 2015–16 to 23% in 2019–20, according to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 5.

Lack of Education:

  • Girls are pushed to work more at home and are more likely to leave school early due to these factors.
  • According to research by the International Centre for Research on Women, girls who have dropped out of school are 3.4 times more likely than those who are still enrolled to be married or to have a stable marriage.


  • Due to the patriarchal mindset often girl child lack proper nutritious food. Even early marriage and multiple pregnancies lead to a malnourished and anemic girl.

Related Initiatives:

Betti Padhao, Betti Bachao

  • launched in 2015 with a focus on sex discrimination in abortion and the dropping child sex ratio, which was 918 girls for every 1,000 males in 2011.

Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana

  • The Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana was established in 2015 to advance the wellbeing of young girls. It encourages parents to save money and invest in order to cover the costs of the girl's children's future education and marriage.

Udaan Scheme by CBSE:

  • The CBSE launched the UDAAN project in order to address the low enrollment of female students in esteemed engineering colleges and the knowledge gap between classroom instruction and engineering entrance exams.

National Girls Secondary Education Incentives Program (NSIGSE):

  • It is a centrally sponsored programme that was started in 2008 with the goal of encouraging females in the 14–18 age range to enrol in secondary school, especially those who have completed Class VIII, and to support their secondary education.

Scheme for Adolescent Girls:

  • The government is also putting this program into action. Its goal is to help, educate, and empower adolescent girls (AGs) so they can become independent, informed citizens.

Way Forward

  • Strengthening the Child Protection System: Immediate action is required to improve the nation's child protection system and to increase the proactivity of the police, judicial, and legal institutions.
  • Mechanisms for localized child protection: Increasing community-based child protection systems, including village-level child protection committees, can be crucial because crimes involving children have a low conviction rate and a high pendency rate.
  • Raising Social Awareness: It is important to address patriarchal social attitudes and prejudices by integrating gender concerns into school curricula.

Read Also: Speech On Importance Of Children's Day

Source: The Hindu

Rising pending cases Under RTI

GS-II : Governance RTI

Rising pending cases Under RTI

  • Nearly 3.15 lakh complaints or appeals have been filed with 26 Information Commissions across India regarding the transparency system established by the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

RTI Backlog in India

  • Pendency and delays: According to statistics gathered from a number of Information Commissions (ICs), the backlog of appeals or complaints with them is rapidly growing every year (reference period 2019–2022), leading to a protracted waiting period for disposition.
  • States like Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Bihar, etc. have the most cases and appeals pending at any given time.
  • 4.2 billion RTI requests have been made so far, along with 26 lakh second appeals, with a two-year waiting period on average.
  • Fully nonfunctional ICs: Of the 29 ICs, two (one each in Jharkhand and Tripura) have been completely nonfunctional for 29 and 15 months, respectively.
  • The mission to protect and advance people's fundamental right to information is violated by the tardy disposal rates that result from ICs' lack of openness in their operation.
  • Personnel Management: Retired bureaucrats are using ICs as parking lots.
  • Personality traits: When denying RTI applications, the PIO and First Appellate Authority acted casually.
  • There is a gender pay gap, with women holding only 5% of information commissioner jobs.
  • Fines: In 95% of the situations where penalties might have been imposed, the commissions chose not to do so.
  • Vacancies: According to a Transparency International report, 42 out of the total 165 positions for information commissioners are vacant.

The Right to Information Act of 2005

  • The Right to Information (RTI) Act of 2005 was passed by Parliament with the mission of empowering citizens, fostering accountability and openness in government operations, and reducing corruption.
  • Introducing the 2019 Right to Information (Amendment) Act: With this alteration, the CIC and ICs' terms of office would no longer be for five years, and the central government would be required to announce their terms. As a result, the commissioners' terms have been reduced to three years.
  • Public Authorities are institutions of self-governance created in accordance with the Constitution, a statute, or government order.
  • They consist of regulators, public sector organizations, and Ministries.
  • They also include any businesses that are owned, controlled or mostly supported by government fusnding, as well as non-governmental organizations.

How the Right to Information Act works

  • A three-tier system has been established for the RTI Act of 2005 to enforce the right to information.
  • Public information officers: The Assistant and Public Information Officers chosen by the Public Authorities receive the initial request for information.
  • A RTI applicant must receive the requested information from them within 30 days of making the request.
  • Appellate Authority: It handles appeals against the Public Information Officer's judgments.
  • They are tasked with hearing appeals against the Appellate Authority's order, either through the State Information Commission or the Central Information Commission (CIC).
  • A Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) and up to 10 Information Commissioners make up an information commission (ICs).

Usefulness of RTI

  • RTI aids in addressing issues relating to constitutional rights and gives citizens the ability to ask the government for clarification, which is the cornerstone of democracy.
  • The institutionalisation of a more informed, egalitarian, and robust decision-making process has been made possible in large part thanks to RTI.

Way Forward

  • The need for the transparency watchdogs to operate more efficiently and transparently is critical.
  • It is necessary to digitize the entire RTI system in order to improve record management. Every IC should be able to accept RTI applications or appeals electronically.
  • The digital RTI portal (website or mobile app) can offer services that are more effective and user-friendly for citizens while also significantly reducing concerns with pending requests and delays.
  • PIOs can receive internal training from professionals in efficient case management and disposal techniques.

Read Also: A Concerted Attack On RTI

Source: Business Standard

Times World University Rankings 2022

GS-II : Governance Education

Times World University Rankings 2022

What are the Ranking's Key Highlights?

  • Teaching (30%), research (30%), citations (30%), international outlook (7.5%), and industrial output (2.5%) are the criteria used to rank the institutes. 15% of the weight given to teaching and research is based on reputational surveys.

Top Performer Globally:

  • Out of 1,799 universities from 104 countries, The University of Oxford has emerged as the top institution.

Rankings for Indian institutions:

  • With 75 ranked universities, India is the sixth most represented nation in the 2023 rankings.
  • For its performance score in both teaching and research, the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) is ranked first among Indian institutions.
  • The IISc is positioned in the range of 251-300 globally.
  • In the rankings for 2022, IISc was the highest-ranked Indian Institute.
  • Shoolini University of Biotechnology and Management Sciences, which is headquartered in Himachal Pradesh and debuted in the rankings, took second place among Indian institutions (351–400 overall).
  • IIT Ropar, the second-ranked Indian institution in the 2022 rankings, dropped to sixth place.
  • Algappa University, a public university in Tamil Nadu, supports the third position.
  • IITs' response: Due to concerns about transparency, the majority of Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) have boycotted it for the third year in a row.
  • IIT Bombay and IIT Delhi placed in the 401-500 overall band, behind IIT Ropar and IIT Indore, in 2019 when the major IITs last took part in the rankings.

What Indian initiatives are related to this?

  • Schools of Eminence (IoE) Program: An initiative by the government known as the Institutions of Eminence (IoE) Scheme aims to create or upgrade 20 institutions—10 from the public and 10 from the private sectors—to become world-class centres of learning and research known as "Institutions of Eminence."
  • The National Education Policy, 2020 seeks to make a number of improvements to the Indian educational system from pre-school to college level and transform India into a superpower of knowledge.
  • Impacting Research Innovation and Technology (IMPRINT) is a pioneering Pan-IIT and IISc joint initiative to create a new education policy and a research roadmap to address the most pressing engineering and technological challenges that India must champion in order to enable, empower, and inspire the country's inclusive growth and self-reliance.
  • The Uchhatar Avishkar Yojana (UAY) was introduced with the goal of fostering higher-level innovation that directly addresses market demands and strengthens Indian manufacturing's competitiveness.

Read Also: One Nation, One Fertilizer’ Scheme

Source: The Indian express

The First Solar-Powered Village in India

GS-III : Economic Issues Energy

The First Solar-Powered Village in India

Modhera, a village in Gujarat's Mehsana district, was recently dubbed India's first solar-powered village by the prime minister.

What Standout Features Define India's First Solar-Powered Village?

  • Modhera Village is well-known for its Sun Temple, a revered historic landmark located on the Pushpavati River. It was constructed in 1026–1027 by Chalukya dynasty King Bhima–I.
  • The temple will get a 3-D projection system that will educate visitors about Modhera's past.
  • Solar Power Generation: The solar power village will utilise 1000 solar panels that have been installed on the village homes to generate electricity 24 hours a day for the people. This will make the town self-sufficient in solar energy generation.
  • It is created using a ground-mounted solar power plant and more than 1300 rooftop solar systems on homes and government structures that are all connected to battery energy storage devices (BESS).
  • A BESS is a particular kind of energy storage device that stores and disperses energy in the form of electricity using batteries.


  • The project will show how India's expertise in renewable energy can empower local residents.
  • Instead of paying for electricity, the villagers might start selling it and profit from the solar panel's energy output by selling it to the public grid.
  • In the long run, it will raise living standards by creating jobs at the village level.
  • It will improve the long-term execution of numerous welfare programmes in the region.
  • Residents would be able to save between 60 and 100 percent on their electricity costs.
  • It will lessen the tedium experienced by rural women and girls who must travel great distances to gather fuel wood and cook in smoky kitchens.
  • Additionally, it will reduce the likelihood of developing lung and eye conditions.

What is India's Solar Energy Situation?

  • The installed solar energy capacity, which now stands at 56.6 GW, has multiplied 19.3 times over the past eight years.
  • India has also set a lofty goal to produce 175 GW of renewable energy by the end of 2022, which will increase to 500 GW by 2030. The largest expansion strategy for renewable energy exists right now.
  • India ranked third globally and second in Asia for new solar PV capacity. In terms of overall installations, it came in at number four (60.4 GW), passing Germany (59.2 GW) for the first time.
  • Rajasthan and Gujarat, which accounted for 53% and 14%, respectively, of installations as of June 2022, were the top states for large-scale solar, followed by Maharashtra with 9%.

Related Initiatives:

  • Solar Park Scheme: Across multiple states, the Solar Park Scheme aims to construct a number of solar parks, each with a capacity of close to 500 MW.
  • Rooftop Solar Scheme: By mounting solar panels on home roofs, the Rooftop Solar Scheme intends to harvest solar energy.
  • Atal Jyoti Yojana: The AJAY initiative was introduced in September 2016 to install solar street lighting (SSL) systems in states where less than 50% of households are connected to the grid (as per Census 2011).
  • The National Solar Mission is a significant effort by the Indian government and state governments to encourage environmentally friendly development and address the country's problem with energy security.
  • SRISTI Scheme: To encourage rooftop solar power projects in India, the Sustainable Rooftop Implementation of Solar Transfiguration of India (SRISTI) scheme.

What are the difficulties India has with solar energy?

  • India is heavily dependent on imports since it lacks the capacity to produce enough PV cells and modules.
  • The annual production capacity for solar modules is currently 15 GW, although domestic output is just about 3.5 GW.
  • Additionally, only 3-4 GW of the 15 GW of module production capacity are technologically competitive and deserving of being deployed in grid-based projects.
  • Supply of Raw Materials: The most expensive raw material, silicon wafer, is not produced in India.
  • Currently, it imports 80% or more of its cells and 100% of its silicon wafers.
  • Other important raw materials, such the metal pastes used to make electrical contacts out of silver and aluminium, are likewise virtually entirely imported.
  • Solar PV cell inefficiencies: The utility-scale solar PV market is still struggling with issues like significant T&D losses and other inefficiencies, land costs, and grid interconnection difficulties.
  • Biodiversity-related problems: There have also been disagreements with neighbourhood residents and laws governing biodiversity protection.
  • Pricing problem: Although India has achieved record-low tariffs for utility-scale solar power generation, this has not translated into cheaper power for end users.

Way Forward

  • In the short term, working with the industry to provide them with trained human resource, process learnings, root-cause analysis through appropriate testing, and in the long term, developing India's own technologies will be necessary for India to become a manufacturing hub. India is making significant progress in the development of solar PV modules.

Read Also: India’s solar strategy

Source: Business Standard

Doom Loop

GS-III : Economic Issues Terminology

Doom Loop

  • There is a chance that the British economy will get stuck in a "doom loop."

What is Doom Loop?

  • The doom loop is a circle of vulnerability where a country's banking system can be badly harmed by price volatility in the sovereign bonds they hold as reserves, leading to a contraction in lending given by the banks.
  • As a result of the domestic economy slowing down as a result of the credit contraction, the price of the sovereign's bond issues continues to decline. This is because the government is being compelled to increase borrowing in order to maintain services during a time when tax revenues are declining.
  • The cycle can also start in the banking industry if a decline in bank lending brought on by issues with liquidity or non-performing loans causes price volatility in government bonds by slowing the economy and undermining trust in sovereign credit.
  • The circle can also be triggered by outside factors like trade tensions or a halt in global economic activity brought on by a natural recession.

Read Also: SC’s Split Verdict on Karnataka Hijab Ban

Source: The economic times

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