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DAILY NEWS ANALYSIS

Monthly DNA

30 Jul, 2021

93 Min Read

Inland Vessels Bill 2021 passed in Lok Sabha

GS-I : Indian Geography Inland Waterways

Inland Vessels Bill, 2021

  • It will replace the Inland Vessels Act, 1917. The Bill will regulate safety, security and registration of inland vessels.
  • A key feature of the Bill is a unified law for the entire country, instead of separate rules framed by the States.
  • The certificate of registration granted under the proposed law will be deemed to be valid in all States and Union Territories, and there will be no need to seek separate permissions from the States.
  • The Bill provides for a central database for recording the details of vessel, vessel registration, crew on an electronic portal.
  • All non-mechanically propelled vessels will also have to be enrolled at the district, taluk or panchayat or village level.
  • It enlarges the definition of ‘inland waters’, by including tidal water limit and national waterways declared by the Central Government.
  • It also deals with pollution control measures of Inland Vessels. This Bill directs the Central Government to designate a list of chemicals, substances, etc. as pollutants.

Source: PIB

Space reforms in India

GS-III : S&T Space

Space reforms in India

  • Space Activities Bill aims at regulation and promotion of private players in space sector. Government committed to create an ecosystem to encourage more private participation in indigenous production of space technologies, services and devices.
  • Government of India has announced space sector reforms in June 2020.
  • The Indian National Space Promotion and Authorization Centre (IN-SPACe) was created as an independent nodal agency under the Department of Space with the mandate of promoting, handholding, licensing, authorization and monitoring of private space activities in India.
  • Access to Department of Space (DOS) facilities and expertise are extended to private entities to support their space activities.
  • Government of India is encouraging transfer of technologies developed in the field of space to Indian industries.
  • Apart from this, Government of India is bringing in new sector policies and guidelines and also revising existing policies.
  • IN-SPACe which is under creation will have Safety and Security Directorate to ensure security of ISRO installations when allowing access to private entities.

Source: PIB

Leh to get India’s first Green Hydrogen Mobility Project

GS-III : Economic Issues Renewable energy

Leh to get India’s first Green Hydrogen Mobility Project

  • Leh is soon to become India 's first city to implement a green hydrogen based mobility project with zero emission.
  • NTPC , Maharatna PSU under Ministry of Power signed an MoU with UT of Ladakh and LAHDC to setup the country’s first Green Hydrogen Mobility project, strengthening PM Shri Narendra Modi’s vision to ensure a carbon free economy based on renewable sources and green hydrogen.
  • REL, a 100% subsidiary of NTPC, signed a MoU with Union Territory of Ladakh, today, to set up the country’s first green Hydrogen Mobility project in the region.
  • The signing of the MoU was also marked with the inauguration of NTPC’s first solar installations in Leh in form of solar trees and a solar car port.
  • The MoU will enable NTPC to help Ladakh develop a carbon free economy based on renewable sources and green hydrogen. This is also in line with the Prime Minister’s vision of a ‘carbon neutral’ Ladakh. LG mentioned that he would like Ladakh to become a hydrogen state and is happy to partner with NTPC to achieve this long term goal.
  • NTPC has planned to ply 5 hydrogen buses, to start with, in the region and the company will be setting up a solar plant and a green hydrogen generation unit in Leh towards this end. This will put Leh as the first city in the country to implement a green hydrogen based mobility project. This would be zero emission mobility in true sense.
  • NTPC has been aggressively pushing for greening its portfolio and green hydrogen project is another step towards achieving low carbon footprint. NTPC has also been promoting usage of green hydrogen based solutions in sectors like mobility, energy, chemical, fertilizer, steel etc.
  • NTPC has recently revised its target of achieving 60GW renewables capacity by 2032, almost doubling the earlier target.
  • Recently, NTPC has commissioned India’s largest floating solar project of 10MW at Vishakhapatnam.

Source: PIB

Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHC) Scheme

GS-III : Economic Issues Aatmnirbhar Bharat

Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHC) Scheme

  • The aims and objectives of Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHC) Scheme announced under Atmanirbhar Bharat Package are as follows:
  1. To address the vision of ‘AtmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’ significantly by creating a sustainable ecosystem of affordable rental housing solutions for urban migrants/poor.
  2. To achieve overall objective of “Housing for All” encompassing the need of affordable rental housing for urban migrants/poor. ARHCs will provide them dignified living with necessary civic amenities near their place of work.
  3. To create a conducive environment by incentivizing Public/Private Entities to leverage investment for creating affordable rental housing stock to take care of their own requirements for workforce and also cater to neighbouring areas, if they have available vacant land.
  • A total of 88,236 existing Government funded vacant houses are available to be converted into ARHCs for rental accommodation to migrants under Model-1 of ARHC Scheme. However, no vacant houses are available in Telangana for rental accommodation to migrants under Model-1.
  • Initial affordable rent of ARHCs will be fixed by the local authority based on a local survey prior to the issuance of Request for Proposal (RFP) by Urban Local Bodies (ULBs).
  • Subsequently, rent will be enhanced biennially by 8%, subject to maximum increase of 20% in aggregate, over a period of 5 years, effective from the date of signing the contract. The same mechanism shall be followed over the entire concession period i.e. 25 years.

Source: PIB

K shaped recovery vs V shaped recovery in India

GS-III : Economic Issues Terminology

K shaped recovery vs V shaped recovery in India

What is a K-shaped recovery?

  • A K-shaped recovery is a post-recession scenario in which one segment of the economy begins to climb back upward while another segment continues to suffer.
  • If illustrated, the economic growth would roughly resemble the two diverging diagonal lines of the letter "K" - hence the name.
  • This is quite unusual. Traditionally, when the economy dips, it's felt throughout every industry and demographic, and vice-versa when the economy eventually recovers. Of course, the impact is often greater on some than on others. But overall, nations and people all experience economic or business cycle changes as one entity.

What is a V-shaped recovery?

  • A V-shaped recovery means that the economy bounces back quickly to its baseline before the crisis, with no hiccups along the way.
  • Growth continues at the same rate as before. This is one of the most optimistic recovery patterns because it implies that the downturn did not cause any lasting damage to the economy.

What is the news?

  • Chief Economic Adviser (CEA) Krishnamurthy Subramanian acknowledged on Thursday that some parts of the economy may be witnessing a K-shaped recovery, as smaller firms and urban poor had been hit harder by the pandemic, but stressed that India’s overall economic rebound remains V-shaped.
  • There has been a V-shaped recovery in the last year.
  • Some commentators may say therefore, this is a K-shaped recovery. But that is more at the sectoral level… at the macro level, there has been a V-shaped recovery.
  • The CEA also projected that a third COVID-19 wave, if it occurred, may be of a low intensity with a much lower economic impact as India would get closer to herd immunity, based on the government’s target to vaccinate the entire adult population by December.
  • Inflation should be rangebound going forward, despite the rise in commodity prices. It’s likely to be between 5% and 6% but certainly within the [RBI’s] tolerance range.

Terminologies for recovery shapes in India

What is a U-shaped recovery?

  • Under this scenario, the economic damage lasts for a longer period of time before eventually reaching the baseline level of growth again. The economy bounces back, but the damage at the bottom lingers for a while.

What is a W-shaped recovery?

  • In a W-shaped recession, also called a double dip, the economy moves beyond a recession into a period of recovery before falling back down again into another recession. The initial recovery is sometimes known as a bear market rally.
  • One example: After the oil and inflation crises in 1979, the U.S. fell into two back-to-back recessions in 1980 and 1981.

What is the Swoosh shaped recovery?

  • A recovery scenario resembling the Nike “swoosh” logo is characterized by a steep drop and a gradual recovery, meaning that it takes much longer to return to pre-crisis growth levels than it took to fall into recession.
  • A variant of this is a square root-shaped recession where growth recovers but then plateaus before reaching pre-crisis levels.

What is an L shaped recovery?

  • An L-shaped recovery is the most pessimistic scenario. In this shape, the economy recovers to a certain degree from a steep drop, but growth never reaches pre-crisis levels for years, if at all. A period of economic stagnation follows.
  • The Brookings Institution points out that this is what the 2008 Great Recession looked like: it took six years after that crisis for GDP to return to 2007 levels, and GDP still hasn’t reached pre-recession projections more than a decade later.

Source: TH

Minorities in India

GS-I : Social issues Social issues

Minorities in India

Introduction

  • The Government has made every section of the society an equal partner of progress with the commitment to “Development with Dignity” “Empowerment without Appeasement” and “Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas” ensuring equal benefits to all sections of the society. Irrespective of his or her caste, religion, region and community is at the centre of welfare schemes of the Government.
  • The Government has been treating all the sections of the society including the Muslims as an equal partner of the development process.
  • Hence the Minorities in India are flourishing equally with all the other sections of the society with a sense of equality, security and prosperity.

Minority Classification

  • But Minority is not defined in the Constitution. Constitution recognises religious and linguistic minorities through Article 29 and Article 30.
  • Article 29: It provides that any section of the citizens residing in any part of India having a distinct language, script or culture of its own, shall have the right to conserve the same. Article 29 is applied to both minorities (religious and linguistic) and also majority. It also includes – Right to agitate for the protection of language. Hence political speeches with respect to this is ok.
  • Article 30: All minorities shall have the right to establish and administer educational institutions of their choice. Article 30 recognises only to religious and linguistic minorities (not majority). It includes right of minority to impart education to its children in its own language.
  • Article 350-B: Originally, the Constitution of India did not make any provision with respect to the Special Officer for Linguistic Minorities. However, the 7th Constitutional Amendment Act, 1956 inserted Article 350-B in the Constitution. It provides for a Special Officer for Linguistic Minorities appointed by the President of India. It would be the duty of the Special Officer to investigate all matters relating to the safeguards provided for linguistic minorities under the Constitution.
  • Currently, the linguistic minorities are identified on a state-wise basis thus determined by the state government whereas religious minorities are determined by the Central Government.
  • Supreme Court has dismissed a plea seeking guidelines to “identify and define” religious minorities in every State to protect their culture and interests. The petition sought to recognise Hindus as minorities in the States where they are low in population.

Ministry of Minority Affairs

  • The Ministry of Minority Affairs is entrusted with the work related to improvement of the socio-economic condition of the minority communities through affirmative action and inclusive development efforts, so that every citizen has equal opportunity to participate actively in building a vibrant nation.
  • The Department Personnel & Training does not maintain separate community wise data on recruitment.
  • This Ministry implements various schemes with objective to increase the participation of the disadvantaged/underprivileged children/candidates of notified minority communities and to improve the level of education, participation in employment, skill and entrepreneurship development, reducing deficiencies in civic amenities or infrastructure are implemented by this Ministry.

National Commission for Minorities (NCM)

  • Ministry of Home Affairs established the National Minorities Commission of India in a resolution on January 12, 1978. Once the National Commission for Minorities Act was enacted in 1992, the Minorities Commission became a statutory body and was renamed as National Commission for Minorities.
  • NCM consist of Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson and five Members. The five Members including the Chairperson shall be from amongst the minority communities.
  • The act (not Constitution) defines a minority as “a community notified as such by the Central government.”

Objectives of NCM

  • evaluate the progress of the development of minorities under the Union and States;
  • monitor the working of the safeguards provided in the Constitution and in laws enacted by Parliament and the State Legislatures;
  • make recommendations for the effective implementation of safeguards for the protection of the interests of minorities by the Central Government or the State Governments;
  • look into specific complaints regarding deprivation of rights and safeguards of the minorities and take up such matters with the appropriate authorities;
  • cause studies to be undertaken into problems arising out of any discrimination against minorities and recommend measures for their removal;
  • conduct studies, research and analysis on the issues relating to socio-economic and educational development of minorities;
  • suggest appropriate measures in respect of any minority to be undertaken by the Central Government or the State Governments;
  • make periodical or special reports to the Central Government on any matter pertaining to minorities and in particular difficulties confronted by them; and
  • any other matter which may be referred to it by the Central Government.

How many Minorities are there in India?

  • Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists, Jain and Zorastrians (Parsis) have been notified as minority communities under Section 2 (c) of the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992.
  • As per the Census 2011, the percentage of minorities in the country is about 19.3% of the total population of the country.
  • The population of Muslims are 14.2%; Christians 2.3%; Sikhs 1.7%, Buddhists 0.7%, Jain 0.4% and Parsis 0.006%.

Government Schemes for the Empowerment of Minorities

Educational Empowerment

  • Scholarship Schemes- Pre-Matric Scholarship, Post-Matric Scholarship and Merit-cum-Means based Scholarship. During the last 7 years, more than 4.52 crore beneficiaries have been provided different scholarships through the National Scholarship Portal (NSP) and Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) out of which more than 53% beneficiaries are female.
  • Maulana Azad National Fellowship Scheme, provides financial assistance to students from notified minority communities and whose annual income is below Rs. 6.0 lakh per annum from all sources, to pursue higher education such as M.Phil and Ph.D.
  • In addition, the Maulana Azad Education Foundation implements the scheme viz. Begum Hazrat Mahal National Scholarship for meritorious girls belonging to notified minority communities studying in Classes IX to XII.
  • Naya Savera – Free Coaching and Allied Scheme which aims to enhance skills and knowledge of students and candidates from notified minority to get employment in Government Sector/ Public Sector Undertaking, jobs in private sector, and admission in reputed institutions in technical and professional courses at under-graduate and post-graduate levels. During last seven years about 69,500 candidates have benefitted from the coaching scheme of this Ministry.
  • Nai Udaan - Support for notified minority community students, on clearing Prelims conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), State Public Service Commission (PSC) Staff Selection Commission (SSC) etc.

Economic Empowerment

  • Seekho aur Kamao (Learn & Earn): It is a skill development initiative for minorities and aims to upgrade the skills of minority youth in various modern/traditional skills depending upon their qualification, present economic trends and market potential, which can earn them employment or make them suitably skilled to go for self-employment. Since, 2014-15 approx. 3.92 lakh persons have been benefitted from this employment oriented program.
  • A mission has been launched by the Ministry of Minority Affairs under “Upgrading the Skill and Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for Development (USTTAD)” scheme to give an effective platform to minority artisans and culinary experts from across the country to showcase and market their finest handicraft and exquisitely crafted products through “Hunar Haats” organized by the Ministry.
  • Ministry has engaged institutions of national repute namely, National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT), National Institute of Design (NID) and Indian Institute of Packaging (IIP) to work in various craft clusters for design intervention, product range development, packaging, exhibitions and brand building etc. So far, Ministry has organised 28 “Hunar Haats” in which more than 5.5 lakhs artisans and people associated with them have been provided employment and employment opportunities, out of which more than 50% beneficiaries are women.
  • Nai Manzil - A scheme to provide education and skill training to the youth from minority communities.
  • Gharib Nawaz Employment Training Programme provides for short-term job oriented skill development courses to youths belonging to minority communities.
  • National Minorities Development Finance Corporation (NMDFC) Loan Schemes provide concessional loans for self-employment and income generating activities for the socio-economic development of the ‘backward sections’ amongst the notified minorities.

Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK)

  • In addition, another scheme namely Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) is implemented by the Ministry of Minority Affairs, which aims to improve the socio-economic conditions and basic amenities in the identified Minority Concentration Areas.
  • The major projects approved under PMJVK are in sectors of education, health and skill, and include Residential Schools, School buildings, Hostels, Degree Colleges, ITIs, Polytechnics, Smart Class Rooms, Sadbhav Mandaps, Health Centres, Skill Centres, Sports facilities, Drinking Water facilities, sanitation facilities etc.
  • In the last 7 years, under the “Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karykram” (PMJVK) more than 43 thousand basic infrastructure projects have been created such as residential schools, new schools, colleges, hostels, community centres, common service centres, ITIs, Polytechnics, Girls Hostels, Sadbhava Mandaps, Hunar Hubs, Smart Class Rooms etc in identified Minority concentrated areas across the country.

Prime Minister's New 15 Point Programme

  • Further, under Prime Minister's New 15 Point Programme for welfare of minorities, the Government ensures that the benefits of various government schemes for the underprivileged reach the disadvantaged and vulnerable sections of the minority communities also.
  • Under the programme, it is provisioned that, wherever possible, 15% of targets and outlays under various schemes should be earmarked for minorities.

Source: PIB

OBC and EWS Reservation in Medical sector

GS-II : Governance Reservation

OBC and EWS Reservation in Medical sector

  • Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has taken a historic and a landmark decision for providing 27% reservation for OBCs and 10% reservation for Economically Weaker Section (EWS) in the All India Quota (AIQ) Scheme for undergraduate and postgraduate medical / dental courses (MBBS / MD / MS / Diploma / BDS / MDS) from the current academic year 2021-22 onwards.
  • This decision would benefit every year nearly 1500 OBC students in MBBS and 2500 OBC students in postgraduation and also around 550 EWS students in MBBS and around 1000 EWS students in postgraduation.
  • The All India Quota (AIQ) Scheme was introduced in 1986 under the directions of the Hon’ble Supreme Court to provide for domicile-free merit based opportunities to students from any State to aspire to study in a good medical college located in another State.
  • All India Quota consists of 15% of total available UG seats and 50% of total available PG seats in government medical colleges.
  • Initially, there was no reservation in AIQ Scheme up to 2007. In 2007, the Hon’ble Supreme Court introduced reservation of 15% for SCs and 7.5% for STs in the AIQ Scheme.
  • When the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Admission) Act became effective in 2007 providing for uniform 27% reservation to OBCs, the same was implemented in all the Central Educational Institutions viz. Safdarjung Hospital, Lady Harding Medical College, Aligarh Muslim University and Banaras Hindu University etc. However, this was not extended to the AIQ seats of State medical and dental colleges.
  • The present Government is committed to providing due reservation both to the backward category as well as the EWS category.
  • The Union Government has now taken a historic decision to provide for 27% reservation for OBCs and 10% reservation for EWS in the AIQ Scheme.
  • The OBC students from across the country shall now be able to take benefit of this reservation in AIQ Scheme to compete for seats in any State.
  • Being a Central Scheme, the Central List of OBCs shall be used for this reservation. Around 1500 OBC students in MBBS and 2500 in postgraduation will be benefitted through this reservation.
  • In order to provide benefit to students belonging to EWS category in admission to higher educational Institutions, a Constitutional amendment was made in 2019 which enabled the provision of 10% reservation for EWS category.
  • Accordingly, seats in medical / dental colleges were increased over two years in 2019-20 and 2020-21 to accommodate this additional 10% EWS reservation so that the total number of seats available for unreserved category do not reduce. In the AIQ seats, however, this benefit had not been extended so far.
  • Therefore, alongwith the 27% reservation for OBCs, 10% reservation for EWS is also being extended in AIQ seats for all the undergraduate / postgraduate medical/dental courses from the current academic year 2021-22.
  • This will benefit every year around more than 550 EWS students for MBBS and around 1000 EWS students for PG medical courses.

Source: PIB

Intensity of cyclones in North Indian Ocean is increasing

GS-I : Physical Geography Cyclone

Intensity of cyclones in North Indian Ocean is increasing

First read the comprehensive topic of Cyclones and then read this news. The retention quality will increase exponentially.

  • The intensity of severe cyclonic storms in the North Indian Ocean region has shown an increasing trend in the past four decades, says a recent study by Indian Scientists.
  • The increasing intensity of severe cyclonic storms with major socioeconomic implications was due to atmospheric parameters like
  1. Higher relative humidity, especially at mid atmospheric level,
  2. Weak vertical wind shear as well as
  3. Warm sea surface temperature (SST).
  • This indicates the role of global warming in bringing about this increasing trend.
  • The impact of global warming due to climate change and its effect on extreme weather events such as frequency and high-intensity tropical cyclones formed over global ocean basins is a matter of concern.
  • High-intensity cyclones have become more frequent in the North Indian Ocean, causing significant risk and vulnerability to the coastal regions.
  • A team of scientists including Jiya Albert, Athira Krishnan, and Prasad K. Bhaskaran from the Department of Ocean Engineering & Naval Architecture, IIT Kharagpur, jointly with K. S. Singh, Centre for Disaster Mitigation and Management, VIT University, Vellore, with the support from the Department of Science & Technology, Government of India under the Climate Change Programme (CCP), studied the role and influence of critical atmospheric parameters in large-scale environmental flow and El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) on tropical cyclone activity in the North Indian Ocean.
  • The study reported an increased amount of water vapor content in the troposphere, and during the past 38 years at 1.93 times as compared to the base year 1979.
  • During the past two decades (2000-2020), the La Niña years experienced almost double the number of intense cyclones compared to the El Niño years.
  • Besides, during La Niña years, the positional shifts in average cyclogenesis of intense cyclones in Bay of Bengal are analogous with the observations for the western North Pacific Ocean basin.
  • An increasing trend in the climatological distribution of water vapor content was also seen during these years, with peaks localized over the Andaman Sea and North China Sea regions in conjunction with the increased frequency of severe cyclones.
  • The new findings from this study are expected to augment advanced research in tropical cyclone activity for North Indian Ocean region and also provide the scope for a detailed investigation on the possible linkages and teleconnection with other climate indices over the North Indian Ocean.

Source: PIB

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