Prelims Specific News Items :-
1) A graph showing the degree of inequality in income and wealth in a given population or an economy – describes which of the following?
- Laffer Curve
- Lorenz Curve
- Phillips Curve
- Kuznets Curve
2) Consider the following statements regarding the traits of “recession”:
- General rise in demand.
- Inflation remains higher and no signs of going down.
- Employment rate falls.
Which of the statements above given is/are correct?
- 1 only
- 1 and 2 only
- 3 only
- 1, 2 and 3
3) A graphic curve which advocates a relationship between inflation and unemployment in an economy”- describes which of the following?
- Phillips curve
- Laffer Curve
- Lorrenz curve
- Gini coefficient
Prelims specific News Items :-
1) India, UK, Australia to launch IRIS at COP26
India along with Australia, the UK and small island developing states(SIDS) will be launching a new initiative named “IRIS (Infrastructure for Resilient Island States)” on the sidelines of the upcoming Conference of Parties (COP26) in Glasgow, UK.
What is the Infrastructure for Resilient Island States(IRIS) Initiative?
- The IRIS initiative is aimed at creating a coalition for putting in place infrastructure that can withstand disasters and lessen economic losses in island nations.
- Under this initiative, Australia, India and the UK have committed an initial funding of $10 million. More countries including Japan are expected to contribute to the initiative.
What are Small island developing states(SIDS)?
Small Island Developing States(SIDS) are a distinct group of 38 UN Member States and 20 Non-UN Members/Associate Members of UN regional commissions that face unique social, economic, and environmental vulnerabilities.
Why was the IRIS Initiative launched for the SIDS States?
According to a World Bank report titled ‘Climate and Disaster Resilient Transport in Small Island Developing States’, SIDS countries are highly susceptible to economic losses due to disasters, with average annual losses ranging from 1% to 10% of the gross domestic product(GDP).
2) India’s first In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) calf of Banni breed of buffaloes
India’s first In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) calf of Banni breed of buffaloes was born at a farmer’s house in Gir Somnath district, Gujarat.
What are Banni Buffaloes?
- Banni buffaloes are also known as “Kutchi” or “Kundi”. It is a breed of buffalo found primarily in the Kutch district of Gujarat.
- This breed of buffaloes is usually bred and preserved by a local community found in Kutch, called the ‘Maldharis‘.
3) What is the Stockholm Conference?
- The 1972 United Nations Conference on the Environment in Stockholm was the first world conference to make the environment a major issue.
- During the conference, participants adopted the Stockholm Declaration, which placed environmental issues at the forefront of international concerns. The conference also marked the start of a dialogue between industrialized and developing countries on the link between economic growth, the pollution of the air, water and oceans and the well-being of people around the world.
- One of the major results of the Stockholm conference was the creation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
In 2022 it will be fifty years since the first United Nations conference on the human environment – the 1972 Stockholm Conference. The Government of Sweden has offered to host a high-level meeting in conjunction with this anniversary. The aim is to contribute to accelerating a transformation that leads to sustainable and green economies, more jobs, and a healthy planet for all, where no one is left behind.
4) SC tells panel to fix maximum water level at Mullaperiyar dam
The Supreme Court on October 25 directed the Supervisory Committee to take an immediate and firm decision on the maximum water level that can be maintained at Mullaperiyar dam, amid torrential rain in Kerala.
Kerala said the water level should not go above 139 feet, the same as what the court had ordered on August 24, 2018, when the State was hit by floods.
- The Mullaperiyar, a 123-year-old dam, is located on the confluence of the Mullayar and Periyar rivers in Kerala’s Idukki district.
- The dam stands at the height of 53.66 metres and 365.85 metres in length.
- It is operated and maintained by the Tamil Nadu for meeting the drinking water and irrigation requirements of five of its southern districts.
- According to a 999-year lease agreement made during the British rule the operational rights were handed over to Tamil Nadu.
- The dam intends to divert the waters of the west-flowing river Periyar eastward to the arid rain shadow regions of the Tamil Nadu.
- The Periyar River is the longest river in the state of Kerala with a length of 244 km.
- It is also known as ‘Lifeline of Kerala’ as it is one of the few perennial rivers in the state.
- A perennial river is a channel that has continuous flow in parts of its stream bed all year round.
- Periyar River originates from Sivagiri hills of Western Ghats and flows through the Periyar National Park.
- The main tributaries of Periyar are Muthirapuzha, Mullayar, Cheruthoni, Perinjankutti.
5) Rajinikanth gets Phalke Award
Actor RajInikanth was conferred the Dadasaheb Phalke Award at a National Film Awards ceremony by Vice-President Venkaiah M Naidu at a ceremony in Delhi.
Dhanush for his lead role in Asuran and Manoj Bajpayee for Bhonsle received the Best Actor Award. Kangana Ranaut has been awarded Best Actor (Female) for her role in Manikarnika-The Queen of Jhansi (Hindi) and Panga (Hindi). Malayalam movie Marakkar Arabikkadalinte Simham received the best film award.
6) Defence exports up by 334% in 5 years: Rajnath
With collaborative efforts of entities from all over the world, the defence exports have grown by 334% in the past five years and India now is exporting to more than 75 countries, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Monday appreciating the efforts of the defence industry and thanking the foreign aerospace and defence companies for investing in the sector.
7) India’s expectations from COP26
The COP26 should be initiating the process of setting the long-term climate finance for the post-2025 period. India welcomed the UK COP26 Presidency’s five key initiatives on sustainable land use, energy transition, low emission vehicle transition, climate finance and adaptation. India was also hoping to strengthen global climate initiatives including the International Solar Alliance, Coalition Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI), leadership Group for Industry Transition (LeadIT Group), Call for Action on Adaptation and Resilience and Mission Innovation.
What are India’s core demands?
India has said it is “open to all options” provided it gets assurances that commitments in previous COPs such as developing countries getting compensated to the tune of $100 billion annually, the carbon-credit markets be reinvigorated and the countries historically responsible for the climate crisis be compensated by way of “Loss and Damages,” and clean development technologies be made available in ways that its industries can painlessly adapt to.
8) CO2 emissions in 2020 above decadal average
A report from the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) said the increase in CO2 from 2019 to 2020 was slightly lower than that observed from 2018 to 2019 but higher than the average annual growth rate over the past decade.
Emission of Methane and Nitrous Oxide was higher than previous year and decade respectively.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Annual Greenhouse Gas Index (AGGI) shows that from 1990 to 2020, radiative forcing by long-lived greenhouse gases (LLGHGs) increased by 47%, with CO2 accounting for about 80% of this increase.
The numbers are based on monitoring by WMO’s Global Atmosphere Watch network.
9 ) Antidiabetic medicines get price caps
Drug price regulator National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) said it has fixed the ceiling prices for 12 antidiabetic generic medicines, including glimepiride tablets, glucose injection and intermediate acting insulin solution.
All About NPPA –
The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) is a government regulatory agency that controls the prices of pharmaceutical drugs in India.
National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) was constituted vide Government of India Resolution dated 29th August, 1997 as an attached office of the Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP), Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers as an independent Regulator for pricing of drugs and to ensure availability and accessibility of medicines at affordable prices.
The NPPA regularly publishes lists of medicines and their maximum ceiling prices.
10) Sudan’s military seizes power in coup
Sudan’s military seized power, dissolving the transitional government hours after troops arrested the Prime Minister. Thousands of people flooded into the streets to protest the coup that threatens the country’s shaky progress toward democracy.
11) Facebook’s language gaps weaken screening of hate and terrorism
Frances Haugen, ex-FB employee-turned whistleblower.
As the Gaza war raged and tensions surged across the West Asia last May, Instagram briefly banned the hashtag #AlAqsa, a reference to the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City, a flash point in the conflict.
Not enough moderation
In countries like Afghanistan and Myanmar, these loopholes have allowed inflammatory language to flourish on the platform, while in Syria and the Palestinian territories, Facebook suppresses ordinary speech, imposing blanket bans on common words.
In Myanmar, the company acknowledged in its internal reports that it had failed to stop the spread of hate speech targeting the Rohingya Muslim population.
12) Rains dent rubber output, imports to rise
India’s natural rubber production is likely to fall sharply in October and November, as heavy rains have been disrupting tapping activity in Kerala, the country’s top-producing State.
Lower production could force India to increase imports in the coming months, from Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand.
What is Rubber Tapping ?
Rubber tapping is the process by which latex is collected from a rubber tree. The latex is harvested by slicing a groove into the bark of the tree at a depth of one-quarter inch with a hooked knife and peeling back the bark.
Rubber is a tropical tree. It requires high temperature throughout the year – ranging between 20°-35°C or average monthly mean of 27°C. Less than 20°C temperature is detrimental. Similarly, rubber also requires heavy rainfall.
13) DoT tweaks AGR to ease levy on telcos
The government amended the telecom licence norms to reduce the tax burden on telecom operators by exempting all non-telecom revenue, income from dividends and rent, among others, for calculation of levies like licence fees.
The amendment forms part of the telecom package announced by the Centre. The old definition of adjusted gross revenue (AGR) had led to a burden of about ₹1.47 lakh crore on the telcos. The exempted sources of revenue will be deducted from their gross revenue to calculate AGR. “This amendment comes into effect from October 1.
What is AGR?
Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) is the usage and licensing fee that telecom operators are charged by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). It is divided into spectrum usage charges and licensing fees, pegged between 3-5 percent and 8 percent respectively.
Editorials of the day
Editorial 1 – A reminder that India still trails in the hunger fight
The Global Hunger Report (GHR) has once again made headlines in India for the country’s poor ranking in terms of the Global Hunger Index (GHI). The report ranks India at 101 out of 116 countries, with the country falling in the category of having a ‘serious’ hunger situation. The ranks are not comparable across years because of various methodological issues and so it is wrong to say that India’s standing has fallen from 94 (out of 107) in 2020.
Who Publishes the Report:- Concern Worldwide (Irish Institute) Welthungerhilfe (German)
Which Parameters are considered for publication of the Report:-
- percentage of undernourished in the population (PoU); – 33.33% weightage
- percentage of children under five years who suffer from wasting (low weight-for-height); 16.67% weightage
- percentage of children under five years who suffer from stunting (low height-for-age), 16.67% Weightage and
- percentage of children who die before the age of five (child mortality)’ 33.33%.
Where is the Issue – Issue is that Indian Government instead of accepting the report accuses that the report is not correct as the data that has been accumulated in indicator 1(i.e Undernourishment) is misplaced.
Some New Challenges: – After the Pandemic the Food security has been hampered further which will negatively impact the Parameter above mentioned.
India has programmes like Mid Day meal (since 1995) and ICDS and NFSA (2013) still the Progress in the recovery in Stunting and Wasting has been very slow. This is also visible in the NFHS – V.
India iin the recent budget allocation decreased the budgetary allocation for the ICDS scheme, while the case should have been vice versa.
Hidden Hunger has still not been in consideration.
What should India do ::- Instead of totally denying the data and report we should try to make amends in our policies and improve the performance in these parameters.
Schemes like Mid Day meal and ICDS needs more focused approach. Awareness Drives and campaigns to make people aware of the balanced diets and Micronutrients needs to be carried out.
Editorial 2 – A festering crisis in the Palk Strait
What is the central theme of the article :- The Article highlights the issues emerging because of the bottom trawling fishing done by the fisherman community from the state of Tamil Nadu in the palk strait region.
What is the Problem with Bottom Trawling of Tamil Nadu Fisherman Community :-
- Bottom Trawling affects badly the aquatic and marine environment.
- Sri Lankan Fisherman Community loses the livelihood, which is a serious bone of contention.
- Tamil Nadu Fishermen are sometimes arrested, remanded and sometimes even killed because of incursion in the foreign waters.
What can be the Possible Solution :-
- Making the Deep Sea fishing mandatory instead of Bottom Trawling.
- Foraging the Fishing activities so as to accumulate both the Tamil Nadu fishermen and the Sri Lankan fishermen community.
- Designating the areas for the fishing communities.