Daily Prelims Newsletter for upsc 26 May 2022

Daily Prelims Newsletter For UPSC
| RaghukulCS

26 May 2022-Thrusday

Table Of Contents

Table of Contents


Why in the news?

The National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) inaugurated PARAM PORUL, a cutting-edge supercomputer at NIT Tiruchirappalli.

Under Phase 2 of the NSM, the PARAM PORUL supercomputing facility is created. In accordance with the Make in India initiative, the majority of the components were made and assembled in India, as was an indigenous software stack developed by C-DAC.

What are the Characteristics of PARAM PORUL?

  • To meet the computing needs of various scientific and engineering applications, the PARAM PORUL system is outfitted with a mix of CPU (Central Processing Unit) nodes, GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) nodes, High Memory nodes, High throughput storage, and high-performance InfiniBand connection.
  • This system uses Direct Contact Liquid Cooling technology to achieve great power utilisation effectiveness while lowering operational costs.
  • For the advantage of researchers, multiple applications from diverse scientific areas such as Weather and Climate, Bioinformatics, Computational Chemistry, Molecular Dynamics, Material Sciences, Computational Fluid Dynamics, and so on have been installed on the system.

What exactly is the National Supercomputer Mission?

  • The National Supercomputing Mission was created in 2015 to improve the country’s research capacity and capabilities by connecting them to form a Supercomputing grid, with the National Knowledge Network (NKN) serving as the backbone.
  • The NKN project aims to build a powerful and resilient Indian network capable of providing secure and dependable connectivity.
  • A supercomputer is a computer that operates at or near the greatest operational rate currently available for computers.
  • The Mission intends to construct and deploy 24 facilities with a total computational capability of more than 64 Petaflops.
  • PETAFLOP is a measure of the processing speed of a Supercomputer and can be expressed as a thousand trillion floating point operations per second.
  • It backs the government’s “Digital India” and “Make in India” initiatives.
  • The Mission is co-managed by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEIT) (MeitY).
  • It is being carried out by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) in Pune and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru.
The mission was divided into three stages:
  • Phase I will focus on supercomputer assembly, while Phase II will focus on manufacturing specific components in the country.
  • India will design a supercomputer in Phase III.
  • Recent advancements in the National Supercomputing Mission:
  • During Phases 1 and 2, 15 systems with computer power of 22 Petaflops (PF) were created at IITs, C-DAC, NIT, JNCASR, and IISER.
  • As part of phase 2, NSM deployed “PARAM Ganga” at IIT Roorkee in March 2022, with a supercomputing capability of 1.66 Petaflops.
  • With a capacity of 5.26 PF, PARAM Siddhi-AI is India’s fastest supercomputer created under NSM.
  • The world’s fastest supercomputer is Japan’s Fugaku.

LGBTIQ+ People's Rights

Why in the news?

  • The International Labour Organization (ILO) recently published a document titled “Inclusion of LGBTIQ+ People in the Workplace.” It makes guidelines to ensure equitable opportunity and treatment for LGBTIQ+ employees.
  • LGBTIQ is an acronym that stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, and Queer.
  • The plus sign represents persons who identify with different SOGIESC and use different labels. In some cases, the terms LGB, LGBT, or LGBTI refer to specific populations.
  • SOGIESC is an acronym that stands for sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and sex characteristics.

What exactly is the International Labour Organization (ILO)?

  • It is the only United Nations (UN) organisation with three components. It brings together governments, companies, and employees from 187 member countries (India is one of them) to define labour standards, develop laws, and design programmes to promote decent work for all women and men.
  • In 1969, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
  • The Treaty of Versailles established the League of Nations as an associated institution in 1919.
  • In 1946, it became the UN’s first linked specialised agency.
  • Geneva, Switzerland is the headquarters.

What are the suggestions?

Review of National Policy and Labor Law:
  • A review of national policy and labour laws will enable governments to analyse their country’s work policy environment for LGBTIQ+ people.
  • This will allow tangible initiatives to be identified for strengthening the legal and policy environment, reducing discrimination and exclusion, and complying with international treaties.
  • LGBTIQ+ people experience harassment, violence, and discrimination around the world because of their sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and sex characteristics.
  • Discrimination costs businesses and national economies money, not only LGBTIQ+ people and their families.
Launch Social Protection Programs:

 It urged member countries, employers’ organisations, and labour leaders to implement social protection programmes to reduce barriers that LGBTIQ+ people confront in society.

Facilitate Consultation:
  • Consultation with LGBTIQ+ groups is essential in addition to social engagement with employers’ and workers’ organisations.
  • This will allow the identification of impediments that LGBTIQ+ people confront while joining the labour market and receiving government programmes, such as social protection.
Working with Small and Medium Industry Associations:

In order to combat gender and sexual identity discrimination and stigma, the International Labor Organization encouraged governments to collaborate with small and medium-sized industry associations, sectoral unions, and informal economy workers’ associations.

End Sexual Discrimination in the Workplace:
  • It makes business sense to focus on LGBTIQ+ inclusion in the workplace while encouraging employers’ organisations to end sexual discrimination in the workplace.
  • According to studies, workplace diversity, including LGBTIQ+ individuals, is beneficial to company.
  • It denotes a creative environment that fosters the necessary circumstances for economic progress.
  • Employers’ organisations can provide policy direction to their members, advocate for and create awareness about include LGBTIQ+ people in the workplace, foster social discourse and collective bargaining, and support members’ learning and sharing of best practises.
Organize and Exercise the Right to Association:
  • The ILO has requested unions to assist LGBTIQ+ employees in organising and exercising their right to association.
  • Workers’ groups can also ensure that LGBTIQ+ problems are addressed in collective bargaining agreements with employers, as well as workplace policies and other tools.
  • Many LGBTIQ+ employees, particularly those in smaller organisations, may feel lonely in the absence of visible LGBTIQ+ peers or allies.

What is the current state of the LGBTIQ+ community in India?

National Legal Services Authority vs. Union of India (2014):

 The Supreme Court stated that “recognition of transgenders as a third gender is a human rights problem, not a social or medical matter.”

Navtej Singh Johar vs. Union of India (2018):

 The Supreme Court (SC) decriminalised homosexuality by striking down portions of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that were deemed to violate the LGBTQ Community’s Fundamental Rights.

  • The Supreme Court ruled that Article 14 of the Constitution ensures equality before the law to all classes of citizens, restoring the LGBTQ community’s “inclusiveness.”
  • It also affirmed the primacy of constitutional morality in India, stating that equality before the law cannot be denied by giving precedence to public or religious morality.
  • According to the Supreme Court, the ‘Yogyakarta Principles on the Application of International Law in Relation to Issues of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity’ should be incorporated into Indian law.
  • The Yogyakarta Principles recognise sexual orientation and gender identity as human rights.
  • A respected group of International Human Rights experts defined them in 2006 in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.
Tussle Over Same-Sex Marriages:
  • In the case of Shafin Jahan v. Asokan K.M. and others (2018), the Supreme Court stated that choosing a partner is a fundamental right, and it can be a same-sex partner.
  • However, the Central Government opposed same-sex marriage in the Delhi High Court in February 2021, arguing that a marriage in India can only be recognised if it is between a “biological man” and a “biological woman” capable of bearing children.
Act to Protect the Rights of Transgender People (2019):
  • The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2019, was passed by Parliament, however it has been criticised for its lack of knowledge of gender and sexual identity.

Draft E-Waste Management Notification

Why in the news?

  • The draught notification for Electronic Waste Management has been posted for public comment by the Ministry of Environment, Forests, and Climate Change.
  • India has a defined set of laws for electronic waste management, which were initially released in 2016 and modified in 2018. The most recent guidelines are set to go into force in August 2022.
  • Previously, the Ministry issued the Plastic Waste Management Amendment Rules, 2021. By 2022, these laws will restrict particular single-use plastic items with “poor utility and high littering risk.”

What is the Electronic Waste Management Draft Notification?

Covered Electronic Goods: 

The notification specifies a wide range of electronic goods, including computers, landline and mobile phones, cameras, recorders, music systems, microwaves, refrigerators, and medical equipment.

Target for E-Waste Collection: 

Consumer goods firms and electronics manufacturers must collect and recycle at least 60% of their electronic waste by 2023, with aims of increasing to 70% and 80% in 2024 and 2025, respectively.

Businesses will be required to register on an internet portal and establish their annual production and e-waste collection goals.

EPR Certificates: 

The laws provide a system of trade in certificates, similar to carbon credits, to allow businesses to temporarily bridge deficits.

The regulations establish a framework for enterprises to get Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) certificates.

These certificates attest to the amount of e-waste collected and recycled by a company in a given year, and a company may sell excess quantities to another company to assist it achieve its obligations.

Concentration on the Circular Economy:

The new rules prioritise EPR, recycling, and trading.

  • This is consistent with the government’s goal of promoting a Circular Economy.
  • Companies who fail to fulfil their annual targets would face a fine or ‘environmental compensation,’ although the proposal does not specify the amount of these charges.
  • The CPCB (Central Pollution Control Board) will be in charge of overseeing the entire execution of these policies.
  • State governments have been tasked with the obligation of earmarking industrial space for e-waste dismantling and recycling facilities, developing industrial skills, and implementing measures to protect the health and safety of workers working in e-waste dismantling and recycling facilities.

What exactly is E-Waste?

  • E-Waste is an abbreviation for Electronic-Waste, and it refers to old, end-of-life, or abandoned electronic appliances. It comprises their parts, consumables, and spares.
  • Since 2011, India has had e-waste management laws in place that require only authorised dismantlers and recyclers to collect e-waste. In 2017, the E-waste (Management) Rules, 2016 were enacted.
  • In Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India’s first e-waste clinic for trash segregation, processing, and disposal from households and business units has been established.
  • Initially, the Basel Convention (1992) made no mention of e-waste, but it eventually addressed the issue in 2006. (COP8).
The Challenges of E-Waste Management in India:
People are less involved:
  • One major reason for used electrical equipment not being recycled was because consumers did not recycle them.
  • However, in recent years, countries all around the world have attempted to enact effective ‘right to repair’ legislation.
  • Child Labor: In India, around 4.5 lakh child labourers between the ages of 10 and 14 are spotted working in various E-waste yards and recycling businesses without proper protection and safeguards.
  • Ineffective Legislation: Most State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs)/PCC websites lack public information.
  • E-waste comprises over 1,000 hazardous compounds that damage land and groundwater.
Incentives are lacking:
  • There are no clear norms for the unorganised sector to treat E-waste.
  • Furthermore, no incentives are specified to entice those involved in E-waste management to follow a formal career.
E-waste Imports:

 Cross-border movement of waste equipment into India- 80 percent of E-waste in industrialised countries is shipped to developing countries such as India, China, Ghana, and Nigeria for recycling.

Authorities’ reluctance to get involved:

Lack of cooperation among various entities responsible for E-waste management and disposal, including municipal non-involvement.

Implications for Security:

End-of-life computers frequently include sensitive personal information and bank account details that, if not erased, open the door to fraud.

The Way Forward

  • In India, several entrepreneurs and businesses have begun to collect and recycle electronic garbage. We require improved implementation procedures and inclusion policies that allow and validate the informal sector to step up and assist us accomplish our recycling targets in an environmentally responsible manner.
  • Furthermore, increasing collection rates needed the participation of all actors, including consumers.

Other’s News


  • The recent expansion of monkeypox to non-endemic nations has focused attention on reemerging viruses like buffalopox, which was discovered in India.
  • Buffalopox is classified as an important viral zoonotic disease by the FAO/WHO Joint Expert Committee on Zoonosis.
  • It is a new infectious viral zoonotic illness that infects milkers and causes significant morbidity in affected domestic buffalo and cattle.
  • It is caused by the Buffalopox virus (BPXV), a member of the Orthopoxvirus genus and a close relative of the vaccinia virus (VACV).
  • BPXV is related to the VACV Lister strain, which is used to inoculate buffalo calves in order to create a Smallpox vaccine.
  • VACV evolved into BPXV throughout time by establishing itself in buffaloes, becoming increasingly virulent to this host and causing infections in cattle and people.
  • Buffalopox is endemic in India, but it has also been reported in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, and Egypt, among other places where buffaloes are raised for milk or draught.


  • According to one study, dangerous amounts of a class of chemicals known as obesogens in the environment may be hastening the global obesity pandemic.
  • Obesity has roughly tripled worldwide since 1975.
  • Obesogens have been discovered to change the balance between energy intake and energy expenditure.
  • Obesogens are environmental substances that alter the body’s natural homeostatic processes, promoting adipogenesis and lipid storage.
  • These are endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) that have an impact on the development and progression of obesity.
  • Water, dirt, food packaging, personal hygiene products, house cleaners, furnishings, and gadgets all contain these compounds.
  • These include bisphenol A and phthalates, which are commonly found in plastics.
  • Pesticides and perfluoroalkyl compounds (PFAs) found in food packaging, cookware, and furniture are also obesogens.
  • Working Principle – Obesogen disrupts the body’s metabolic thermostat.
  • The body’s balance of energy intake and expenditure through exercise is dependent on the interaction of hormones from adipose tissue, the gut, the pancreas, the liver, and the brain.
  • Pollutants can directly affect the number and size of fat cells, modify the signals that cause people to feel full, and alter thyroid function and the dopamine reward system.
  • They can also impact the bacteria in the gut and cause weight gain by increasing the efficiency with which calories are absorbed from the intestines.
  • Obesogen action is most sensitive in gestation and early infancy, thanks to epigenetic programming that can be passed down to future generations.
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