DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS UPSC | 20th October 2020 | RaghukulCS

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DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS UPSC | 20th October 2020 | RaghukulCS

News Analysis


20th October 2020 Current affairs

> Context: CAA will be executed, rules being framed, says Nadda
Implementation of the amended Citizenship Act got delayed because of pandemic

Prelims facts (Polity)

What is CAA?

  • The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 was passed by the Parliament of India on 11 December 2019. It amended the Citizenship Act, 1955 by providing a path to Indian citizenship for illegal migrants of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi, and Christian religious minorities, who had fled persecution from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan before December 2014.

What is NRC?

  • The National Register of Citizens (NRC) is a register of all Indian citizens whose creation is mandated by the 2003 amendment of the Citizenship Act, 1955. Its purpose is to document all the legal citizens of India so that the illegal immigrants can be identified and deported.
  • It has been implemented for the state of Assam starting in 2013–2014.

What is NPR?

  • The National Population Register (NPR) is a list of all the people residing in India and includes both the citizens and the non-citizens. Residents of a locality living there for at least six months with plans to continue their residence for another six months or more are included into the list of NPR. It is prepared as per the provisions of the Citizenship Act, 1955, and the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.

> Context: Chinese soldier who strayed across LAC held in Ladakh

Prelims facts (Geography locations)

India china border dispute map:

> Context: Two die while cleaning septic tank in Azadpur

Mains (GS-I : Social empowerment, Indian Society, Ethics)

What is manual scavenging?

  • Manual Scavenging is the practice of manually cleaning, carrying, or handling human excreta from dry latrines and sewers.
  • Manual scavenging is linked to India’s caste system where the so-called low castes were expected to perform this job.

Reasons behind the issue:

  • Majority of  the Society lacks the empathy for manual scavengers in India.
  • Manual scavenging exists mainly due to the continued presence of unsanitary latrines where human waste has to be cleaned physically, rather than by a machine or sewage system. The majority of such unsanitary latrines are dry latrines that don’t use water.
  • Increasing urbanization in the country requires more manual scavengers for the cleaning of sewers or septic tanks
  • Poor enforcement of existing laws against the practice.
  • Even if they want to leave their profession, their uncleanliness tag and the resultant social stigma makes it impossible for them to find alternative jobs.

What are the measure taken?

  • In July 2018, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has launched a ‘technology challenge” with an aim of eliminating human entry into septic tanks and drains for cleaning
  • In 1993, India banned the employment of people as manual scavengers.
  • Manual Scavenging is regulated by the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013 which further reinforces the ban.
  • National Commission for Safai Karmacharis (NCSK) is a statutory body established under National Commission for Safai Karamcharis Act, 1993.
  • Self-Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers (SRMS) was introduced in 2007 with the aim to rehabilitate remaining manual scavengers and their dependents in alternative occupations.
  • Swachh Bharat Mission focuses on the conversion of insanitary latrines into sanitary latrines.
  • Supreme Court of India gave landmark judgement to identify and award compensation of Rs 10 lakh to dependents in deaths of sewerage workers who died while cleaning sewerage and septic tanks since 1993.

Way forward:

  • Mechanization of sanitation work is the way forward to eliminate manual scavenging.
  • New alternatives like Bio-toilets in the railway shall be implemented everywhere.

> Context: Plea seeks paid leave for women govt. employees – Facilities also sought during periods

Mains (GS-I : Role of women and women’s organization, Indian Society)

Why such plea? (supporting reason)

  • The plea by Delhi Labour Union said that women be provided special casual or paid leave as menstruation is intrinsically related to human dignity
  • By not providing separate toilet facilities, breaks to maintain hygiene during the particular period and paid leaves in form of special casual leaves, the authorities are depriving the employees of their dignity.

Argument against the move:

  • Some women see period leave as the gendering of the workplace, as a statement of biological determinism, as using biology against women to offer equal opportunities and assignments.
  • In the nature-versus-nurture debate, I have always been on the side of nurture. I believe that social differences and constructs create our differences, not biological essentialism. And I believe period leave is biological essentialism that my feminism opposes. – Burkha Dutt (TV journalist)

Measure taken so far for working women:

  • The government launched the Working Women Hostels to ensure availability of safe, convenient accommodation for working family, along with daycare facilities for their children, wherever possible in urban, semi-urban and rural areas.
  • The Equal Remuneration Act, 1976 which directs that States shall, in particular, have policies towards securing equal pay for equal work for both men and women.
  • The Factories Act, 1948 has exclusive provisions for women workers for safe workig environment.
  • Maternity Benefit Amendment Act, 2017 provides for maternity leaves, creche facility at the workplace.
  • Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal) Act, 2013 has provisions regarding grievance redressal and providing a safe working environment.

> Context: Australia to take part in Malabar naval exercise

Prelims facts (International relations)

What is Malabar naval exercise?

  • Exercise Malabar is a trilateral naval exercise involving the United States, Japan and India as permanent partners.
  • Originally begun in 1992 as a bilateral exercise between India and the United States, Japan became a permanent partner in 2015
  • The annual Malabar series began in 1992 and includes diverse activities, ranging from fighter combat operations from aircraft carriers through Maritime Interdiction Operations.

What is QUAD?

  • The Quadrilateral group or the Quad is an informal group which includes the trade spokesmen of the United States, Japan, Canada, and the European Union.
  • It was first suggested during a private meeting during the 7th G7 summit in July 1981.

Mains (GS-II : India and its neighbourhood- relations)

What are the probable implication of this decision?

  • This may provoke China & may compelled them to take decision inconvenient for India.
  • This can be a check on china in Indo Pacific region.
  • QUAD will be fully integrated in maritime domain in Indo Pacific region.
  • It will bolster the ability of India, Australia, Japan and the United States to work together to uphold peace and stability across the region.

> Context: It’s China that happens to have the cash now, says Sri Lanka Minister
Each country works out its own financing arrangements, says Ajith Nivard Cabraal, referring to Sri Lanka’s borrowing from China

Mains (GS-II : India and its neighbourhood- relations)

What this statement suggest?

  • This indicates that how money power matters in not just in bilateral relations but in whole south Asian region.
  • India should focus on to become financially viable partner in south Asian region.
  • Soft power in international relations (on which India relies most of the time) is not a reliable strategy.
  • We can aim to overtake money power of china in long run but in we have to adopt unique & immediate counter strategy to curb the influence of china.

> Context: ‘15 dead since start of Nigeria protests’

Prelims facts (Geography locations)

> Context: The Delhi High Court on Monday directed Zee Media Corporation Limited to submit an affidavit disclosing the source of its news report on an alleged disclosure statement of a Jamia Millia Islamia student, Asif Iqbal Tanha, who was arrested in a case related to the February riots.

Mains (Ethics)

– This example can be used to write about media ethics in your answers.

Media ethics guidelines given by Press council of India:

  • Honesty and fairness; duty to seek the views of the subject of any critical reportage in advance of publication; duty to correct factual errors; duty not to falsify pictures or to use them in a misleading fashion;
  • duty to provide an opportunity to reply to critical opinions as well as to critical factual reportage;
  • appearance as well as reality of objectivity; some codes prohibit members of the press from receiving gifts’
  • respect for privacy;
  • duty to distinguish between facts and opinion;
  • duty not to discriminate or to inflame hatred on such grounds as race, nationality, religion, or gender; some codes call on the press to refrain from mentioning the race, religion or nationality of the subject of news stories unless relevant to the story; some call for coverage which promotes tolerance;
  • duty not to use dishonest means to obtain information;
  • duty not to endanger people;
  • general standards of decency and taste;
  • duty not to prejudge the guilt of an accused and to publish the dismissal of charges against or acquittal of anyone about whom the paper previously had reported that charges had been filed or that a trial had commenced.

> Context: Centre said to ask at least eight PSUs to consider buy­backs

Mains (GS-III : Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth,
development and employment)

Why?

  • India is suffering from huge fiscal deficit. India is unlikely to be anywhere near its fiscal deficit target of 3.5% of GDP for 2020/21
  • Current pandemic demands huge money to be spent on health care system.
  • India is finding ways to raise funds.

Prelims facts (Economy)

What is buy back? & how does it works?

  • A buyback is when a corporation purchases its own shares in the stock market.
  • A repurchase reduces the number of shares outstanding, thereby inflating (positive) earnings per share and, often, the value of the stock. 
  • A share repurchase can demonstrate to investors that the business has sufficient cash set aside for emergencies and a low probability of economic troubles.
  • A buyback allows companies to invest in themselves. Reducing the number of shares outstanding on the market increases the proportion of shares owned by investors.

> Context: CPSEs told to meet 75% capex target by Dec. FM urges spending to spur economy

Prelims facts (Economy)

What is capital expenditure & what are its effects?

  • A capital expenditure (CAPEX) is an investment in a business, such as a piece of manufacturing equipment, an office supply, or a vehicle. 
  • A CAPEX is typically geared towards the goal of introducing a new product line or expanding a company’s existing operations. 
  • Money spent on CAPEX purchases is not immediately reported on an income statement.
  • In economics, capital refers to the assets–physical tools, plants, and equipment–that allow for increased work productivity. By increasing productivity through improved capital equipment, more goods can be produced and the standard of living can rise.

> Context: CPSEs told to meet 75% capex target by December –  FM urges spending to spur economy

Prelims facts (Economy)

India & sugar production:

  • In the last 5 years, two States have dominated India’s sugar production. Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra together share 66 per cent of sugar production.
  • India became the world’s largest sugar producer in 2018/2019, beating out Brazil for the first time in 16 years.
  • India produced 33 million metric tons of sugar. That is 19% of the world’s total sugar production of 179 million metric tons.
  • The sugar harvesting season typically begins in October, peaks in January and starts to wind down by end of March.
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