21 February, 2020
18 Min Read
|GS-II||Article 371 of the Indian Constitution|
|State Human Rights Commission (SHRC)|
|UK’s new points-based visa system||International Relations|
|Govt. to revive old drug manufacturing units|
|GS-III||Operation Control Centre for goods trains||Economic Issues|
|Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB)|
|Consumer Price Index (CPI)||Economic Issues|
Syllabus subtopic: Indian Constitution—Historical Underpinnings, Evolution, Features, Amendments, Significant Provisions and Basic Structure.
Prelims and Mains focus: about Article 371 and its various provisions related to northeast states; related issues
News: Union Home Minister assured the northeastern States that the Centre would never touch Article 371 of the Constitution that grants special provisions to the region.
About the event
Union Home Minister, also the chairman of the North Eastern Council (NEC), gave the assurance in his inaugural address at the 68th plenary session of the NEC in Guwahati.
The meeting was attended by the Governors, the Chief Ministers and officials of eight northeastern States.
As the government abrogated Article 370 that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir, Article 371, which has special provisions for other States, mostly from the Northeast, has invited some attention.
About Article 371 of the Indian Constitution
Source: The Hindu
Syllabus subtopic: Statutory, Regulatory and various Quasi-judicial Bodies.
Prelims and Mains focus: about SHRCs: composition and functions
News: The State Human Rights Commissions (SHRCs) were asked by National Human Rights Commission Chairperson to join the common portal — HRC Net — to avoid duplication of complaints.
About State Human Rights Commission (SHRC)
A State Government may constitute a body known as the Human Rights Commission of that State to exercise the powers conferred upon, and to perform the functions assigned to, a State Commission.
A State Commission is to be composed of a chairman and some members appointed by the Governor in consultation with the
Term of office: Three years or till the age of seventy years (eligible for reappointment).
The chairman or any other member is removable by the President on the charge of proved misbehavior or incapacity after a regular inquiry by a judge of the Supreme Court. They are removable on the grounds as provided for such removals of the members of NHRC as well.
These functions of the SHRCs are to:
Source: The Hindu
Syllabus subtopic: Effect of Policies and Politics of Developed and Developing Countries on India’s interests, Indian Diaspora.
Prelims and Mains focus: about the new immigrations system and its features; about its significance for India
News: United Kingdom’s Home Secretary announced the launch of the UK's new points-based visa system which is inspired by Australia’s points-based immigration system.
It is aimed at attracting the "brightest and the best" from the world, including from India, and cutting down numbers of cheap, low-skilled workers coming to United Kingdom.
About the new immigration system
Benefit for Indian nationals
Source: Indian Express
Prelims and Mains focus: about the move and its significance; about Coronavirus outbreak and its impact on India-China trade; about CDSCO
News: The government is planning to revive old drug manufacturing units that produced key ingredients for crucial medicines in the past, but are now being imported from China.
About the move
Why is government’s support necessary?
The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) under Directorate General of Health Services, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India is the National Regulatory Authority (NRA) of India.
Functions: Under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, CDSCO is responsible for approval of New Drugs, Conduct of Clinical Trials, laying down the standards for Drugs, control over the quality of imported Drugs in the country and coordination of the activities of State Drug Control Organizations by providing expert advice with a view to bring about the uniformity in the enforcement of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
CDSCO along with state regulators, is jointly responsible for grant of licenses of certain specialized categories of critical Drugs such as blood and blood products, I. V. Fluids, Vaccine and Sera.
Source: Indian Express
Syllabus subtopic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
Prelims and Mains focus: about DFCs and their significance; about DFCCIL
News: The world’s second-biggest Operation Control Centre for goods trains, built in India by the Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India (DFCCIL) is ready to begin operations.
About the centre
About Dedicated Freight Corridor (DFC)
About Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India (DFCCIL)
Source: The Hindu
Syllabus subtopic: Conservation, Environmental Pollution and Degradation, Environmental Impact Assessment.
Prelims and Mains focus: about the species and conservation status; about WCCB and its mandate
News: Four rare Indian Tent Turtles were rescued by the Delhi police in north Delhi and were handed over to officials of the Delhi zoo after inspection by Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB).
Indian Tent Turtle (kachuga tecta tecta)
About Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB)
Under Section 38 (Z) of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972, it is mandated
Source: The Hindu
Syllabus subtopic: Indian Economy and issues relating to Planning, Mobilization of Resources, Growth, Development and Employment.
Prelims and Mains focus: about CPI and its significance; about inflation targeting
News: The RBI governor has stressed the need to review the monetary policy framework. An inflation targeting framework is effective when the measure of inflation is accurate. But there are concerns about CPI’s composition.
What is CPI and how is it computed?
How are these weights for CPI derived?
Why is it important to update CPI weights?
As our consumption pattern shifts, a CPI based on old weights is likely to underestimate or overestimate inflation. For example, the share of expenditure on transistors, which have become obsolete, has gone down. If prices of transistors increase, old shares would give a higher inflation rate than what consumers experience.
How will this impact inflation targeting?
An inflation targeting regime is as good as the quality of inflation statistics. This is important as several other inflation indicators seem to be below 4%, even as food inflation rose, driven by onion prices. As such, we may be overestimating inflation, but there have been times when we have underestimated it. Recently, some authors argued the need to move to a broader measure of inflation target that could combine the GDP deflator, wholesale price index and CPI to avoid overdependence on a single indicator.
How do we get a right estimate of inflation?
The share of consumption expenditure has changed between the 2011 and 2017 National Accounts Statistics (NAS), with a decline in the share of expenditure on food. The official CPI series could be more sensitive to food inflation. Given that the quality and reliability of the survey data have been questioned over the years, moving towards a CPI derived from the private final consumption data from NAS must be considered.
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