Indian Express 25/06/2020

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1) Cyber Security Framework In India:-

Recently, the cyber security attack on Australia’s communication system has brought the governance to a stand still. In India, too, cyber attacks have been occurring with increasing frequency. For example, leak of personal information of 3.2 million debit cards in 2016 and the Data Theft At Zomato (2017), Wannacry Ransomware (2017), PETYA Ransomware (2017) etc.

Further, Cyber security has become an integral aspect of national security. Moreover, its area of influence extends far beyond military domains to cover all aspects of a nation’s governance, economy and welfare.

Although India was one of the few countries to launch a cybersecurity policy in 2013, not much has transpired in terms of a coordinated cyber approach. Thus, there is a need for a comprehensive cyber security policy in India.

Need For Cyber Security Framework

  • National Security Imperative: The change in military doctrines favouring the need to raise cyber commands reflects a shift in strategies, which include building deterrence in cyberspace.
  • Increasing Importance of Digital Economy: The digital economy today comprises 14-15% of India’s total economy, and is targeted to reach 20% by 2024.
  • Added Complexity: With more inclusion of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), data analytics, cloud computing and Internet of Things (IoT), cyberspace will become a complex domain, giving rise to issues of a techno-legal nature.
  • Securing Data: Data is referred to as the currency of the 21st century and due to its bulk creation owing to India’s population, several international companies (Google, Amazon etc.) are trying to have access to it.
    • Given this there are issues related to data sovereignty, data localisation, internet governance, etc.
    • Thus, there is a need to build strong cyber security architecture.

Challenges in India’s Cyber Security Approach

  • Lack of Cybersecurity WorkForce: The Indian military, central police organizations, law enforcement agencies and others are deficient in manpower, for software and hardware aspects integral to this field.
    • Moreover, there is a growing demand for professionals in Artificial Intelligence (AI), BlockChain Technology (BCT), Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine Learning (ML).
    • According to several estimates there is a need for at least three million cybersecurity professionals today.
  • Lack of Active Cyber Defence: India doesn’t have the ‘active cyber defence’ like the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or US’ Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data (CLOUD) Act.


  • Active Cyber Defence: It is far more than just the enhancement of defensive cybersecurity capabilities for the Government and the Intelligence Community.
    • Active Cyber Defence-defined capabilities and processes are employed to support federal, state, and local government agencies and organizations, critical infrastructure segments, and industry.
  • Overlapping Regulatory Bodies: Unlike the US, Singapore, and the UK where there is a single umbrella organisation dealing in cybersecurity, India has several central bodies that deal with cyber issues, and each has a different reporting structure.
  • Dependency on Foreign Players For Cyber Security Tools: India lacks indigenisation in hardware as well as software cybersecurity tools.
    • This makes India’s cyberspace vulnerable to cyberattacks motivated by state and non-state actors.
  • External Challenges: Challenges such as growing Chinese influence in Indian telecom space, social media is becoming a powerful tool for dissemination of “information” making it difficult to differentiate fact from fake news.

Way Forward

  • Creating Awareness: With countries resorting to digital warfare and hackers targeting business organisations and government processes, India has to create awareness that not a single person or institution is immune to it.
    • While the government and the corporate world are better placed perhaps to create their own programs, it is the civil society who needs to bring into this ambit.
  • Strengthening of Existing Cyber Security Framework: National cybersecurity projects such as the National Cyber Coordination Centre (NCCC), National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre (NCIIPC) and the Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) need to be strengthened manifold and reviewed.
  • Bringing Cyber Security in Education: Educational institutions including central universities, private universities, industry associations, Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) must incorporate courses on cybersecurity.
  • Integrated Approach: Given increasing dominance of mobile and telecommunication, both National cyber security policy and National Telecom Policy will have to effectively coalesce to make a comprehensive policy for 2030.
  • Promoting Indigenisation: There is a need to create opportunities for developing software to safeguard cyber security and digital communications.
    • The Government of India may consider including cybersecurity architecture in its Make In India programme.
    • Also, there is a need to create suitable hardware on a unique Indian pattern that can serve localised needs.

Given the future of technology under Industrial Revolution 4.0, India requires a strong cybersecurity framework based on the 4D principles i.e. Deter, Detect, Destroy and Document so that it can subverse all attempts towards any cyber challenges.

Mains QuestionGiven the criticality of Cybersecurity in India’s economy, governance and national security, there is a need for comprehensive cybersecurity policy. Discuss.

2)Co-operative Banks Under RBI Supervision

Why In News

Recently, the Central government approved an Ordinance to bring all urban and multi-state co-operative banks under the direct supervision of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

Key Points

  • Reason:
    • The decision comes after several instances of fraud and serious financial irregularities, including the major scam at the Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank in 2019.
    • Till now, all the co-operative banks came under dual regulation of the RBI and the Registrar of Co-operative Societies, resulting in regulatory and supervisory lapses at many of these banks.
      • The RBI had no powers to draw up an enforceable scheme of reconstruction of a co-operative bank.
      • However, from now onwards the urban and multi-state co-operative will come under the direct supervision of RBI.
  • Benefit:
    • The move will empower the RBI to regulate all urban and multi-state co-operative banks on the lines of commercial banks.
      • Earlier, the Supreme Court pronounced that co-operative banks come within the definition of ‘Banks’ under the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 for the purposes of the Sarfaesi Act, 2002.
      • The Sarfaesi Act is an effective tool for bad loans (Non-Performing Assets) recovery.
    • It will also provide more security to depositors.
      • In India, there are 1482 urban co-operatives banks and 58 multi-state co-operative banks.
      • These banks have a depositor base of 8.6 crores, who have saved a huge amount of Rs. 4.84 lakh crore with these banks.
  • Issues Involved:
    • The rural co-operative banks will continue to remain under the dual regulation of RBI and Registrar of Co-operative Societies.
    • The rural co-operative banks face the same issue of misgovernance and fraud, like urban co-operatives banks.

Co-operative Banking

  • A Co-operative bank is a financial entity which belongs to its members, who are at the same time the owners and the customers of their bank. It is distinct from commercial banks.
  • They are broadly classified into Urban and Rural co-operative banks based on their region of operation.
  • They are registered under the Co-operative Societies Act of the State concerned or under the Multi-State Co-operative Societies Act, 2002.
  • The Co-operative banks are also governed by the
    • Banking Regulations Act, 1949.
    • Banking Laws (Co-operative Societies) Act, 1955.
  • Features of Co-operative Banks:
    • Customer Owned Entities: Co-operative bank members are both customer and owner of the bank.
    • Democratic Member Control: These banks are owned and controlled by the members, who democratically elect a board of directors. Members usually have equal voting rights, according to the cooperative principle of “one person, one vote”.
    • Profit Allocation: A significant part of the yearly profit, benefits or surplus is usually allocated to constitute reserves and a part of this profit can also be distributed to the co-operative members, with legal and statutory limitations.
    • Financial Inclusion: They have played a significant role in the financial inclusion of unbanked rural masses. They provide cheap credit to masses in rural areas.

3)Annual TB Report 2020

News: Union Minister for Health released the annual Tuberculosis(TB) Report 2020.


Key Highlights:

  • TB Cases: Over 24 lakh TB patients have been notified in 2019.This amounts to a 14% increase in TB notification as compared to 2018.
  • TB Deaths: The report shows 79,144 deaths due to tuberculosis were reported in 2019 which is much lower than the WHO estimate of 4.4 lakh fatalities.
  • TB cases in Children’s: Theproportion of children diagnosed with TB increased to 8% in 2019 compared to 6% in 2018.
  • Missing cases: There has been a reduction in the number of missing cases to 2.9 lakh cases in 2019 as against more than 10 lakhs in 2017.
  • HIV associated TB Deaths: India accounts for 9% of all HIV-associated tuberculosis (TB) deaths in the world, the second-highest number globally.
  • Treatment: Expansion of treatment services has resulted in a 12% improvement in the treatment success rate of notified patients.For 2019, it was 81% compared to 69% in 2018.
  • States: Over half of the total TB cases were notified from five states — Uttar Pradesh(20%), Maharashtra(9%), Madhya Pradesh(8%) Rajasthan(7%) and Bihar(7%).

Ranking of States: The Central TB Division(CTD) has introduced a quarterly ranking on TB elimination efforts by all the states and UTs:

  • Larger states with more than 50 lakh population: Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh were awarded as best performing States.
  • Smaller states with less than 50 lakh population: Tripura and Nagaland were awarded.
  • Union Territories: Dadara and Nagar Haveli, and Daman & Diu were chosen as the best performers.

Additional Facts:

  • Tuberculosis(TB): It is an infectious airborne bacterial disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
  • Nikshay Poshan Yojana: It is a direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme to provide nutritional support to TB patients.
  • National Strategic Plan (NSP) for TB Elimination (2017-2025): It is a framework to provide guidance for the activities of various stakeholders to reduce the burden of TB mortality and morbidity.It aims to work towards the elimination of TB in India by 2025.

4.Government opens up space sector and assets to private sector to ‘enhance’ capacity

News: Union Government has approved the setting up of a new body named the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorization Centre(IN-SPACE).


  • IN-SPACE: It will be a national nodal agency under the Department of Space for providing a level playing field for private companies to use Indian space infrastructure.
    • It will also have its own chairman and board who will function autonomously and parallel to Indian Space Research Organization(ISRO).

Additional Facts:

  • New Space India Ltd(NSIL): It was set up in 2019 under administrative control of the Department of Space(DOS).
  • Objective: To enable Indian industries to take up high technology space related activities and is also responsible for promotion and commercial exploitation of the products and services emanating from the Indian space programme.

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