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THE HINDU DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS 4TH FEBRUARY 2020

Q.1 Which of the following reasons prompted British to promote English Education in India?
1. Need to ensure a cheap supply of educated Indians to man an increasing number of subordinate
posts in administration.
2. Educated Indians would help expand market for British manufactures in India.
3. Western education would reconcile Indians to British rule.
Select the correct answer using the code given below
A. 2 and 3 only

B. 1,2 and 3

C. 3 only
D. 1 and 3 only

Q.2 Consider the following statements regarding Vernacular Press Act, 1878
1. The magistrate’s action was final and no appeal could be made in a court of law.
2. Surendranath Banerjea became the first Indian journalist to be imprisoned after enactment of Act.
3. Lord Curzon repealed the act
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
A. 1 and 2 only
B. 2 only
C. 1 and 3 only
D. 2 and 3 only

Q.3 Consider the following statements
1. James Augustus Hickey in 1780 started The Bengal Gazette.
2. Press Act, 1835 required a printer/publisher to give a precise account of premises of a publication
and cease functioning.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
A. 1 only
B. 2 only
C. Both 1 and 2
D. Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWERS: B,A,C

CORONA VIRUS STATE CALAMITY IN KERALA

NEWS: 

With the confirmation of a third case of the novel coronavirus (nCoV) infection in the State, Kerala on Monday declared the epidemic a State calamity.

The apex committee of the State Disaster Management Authority met Chief Secretary Tom Jose to propose the decision to ensure that the outbreak is controlled.

As on Monday, 2,239 travellers from China and other nCoV-affected countries have been placed under surveillance in the State.

Among them, 2,155 are under home isolation and 84 have been admitted to hospitals with isolation facilities in various districts, a bulletin from the State Health Department said.

Of the 140 samples sent so far to the National Institute of Virology in Pune, 46 have tested negative.

The symptoms of the coronavirus infection start with fever and dry cough followed by breathing problems, according to doctors.

The Kerala Health Department has taken adequate preparatory measures and had framed detailed guidelines as soon as the WHO issued a global health alert.

ABOUT CORONA VIRUS

  • Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).
  • Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people.

Symptoms:

Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.

Transmission:

Human coronaviruses most commonly spread from an infected person to others through:

  1. the air by coughing and sneezing.
  2. close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands.
  3. touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands.
  4. rarely, fecal contamination

DEFENCE EXPO 2020

 

INDIRA GANDHI NATIONAL CENTER OF ARTS

NEWS:

Stating that Delhi did not have a large auditorium, Union Culture Minister of State (Independent Charge) Prahlad Singh Patel told the Lok Sabha on Monday that an 1,800-seat National Centre for the Performing Arts would be constructed at the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA).

ABOUT IGNCA

Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA)New Delhi is a premier government-funded arts organization in India.

It is an autonomous institution under the Union Ministry of Culture.

It was established in the memory of Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, with Kapila Vatsyayan as its founding director.

The IGNCA was launched on 19 November 1985 by Prime Minister Shri Rajiv Gandhi at a function where the symbolism of the components was clearly articulated at different levels.

LOCUST ATTACK IN PUNJAB

NEWS:

Swarms of locusts were spotted in two border villages of Punjab’s Fazilka district, prompting the state Agriculture Department to sound a high alert.

Emanating from Pakistan, the swarms of pests — three to four-km-long and one-km-wide — settled at the trees in these border villages on Sunday evening, officials said on Monday.

The Chief Minister had warned that any failure to control the pests could lead to serious implications for agriculture production in India, especially in Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Gujarat, which will ultimately hit commodity prices and food security.

Locusts, popularly known as ‘tiddi dal’, were earlier spotted in some villages of Fazilka, Muktsar and Bathinda districts.

Locusts are short-horned grasshoppers.Their appearance in winter months is a new phenomenon.

The Union Agriculture Ministry’s Locust Warning Organisation (LWO), headquartered in Jodhpur, has launched efforts on a war footing to control locusts. Teams carrying equipment were rushed to the villages this month to spray high-intensity malathion insecticide to prevent the spread of locusts to other areas.

About Locust

  • A locust is a large, mainly tropical grasshopper with strong powers of flight. They differ from ordinary grasshoppers in their ability to change behaviour (gregarize) and form swarms that can migrate over large distances.
  • Locusts are generally seen during the months of June and July as the insects are active from summer to the rainy season.
  • Locusts have a high capacity to multiply, form groups, migrate over relatively large distances (they can fly up to 150 km per day). They can rapidly reproduce and increase some 20-fold in three months.
  • Threat to Vegetation: Locust adults can eat their own weight every day, i.e. about two grams of fresh vegetation per day. A very small swarm eats as much in one day as about 35,000 people, posing a devastating threat to crops and food security.
  • FAO provides information on the general locust situation to the global community and gives timely warnings and forecasts to those countries in danger of invasion.
  • Locust Warning Organisation (LWO), Directorate of Plant Protection Quarantine and Storage, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, is responsible for monitoring, survey and control of Desert Locust in Scheduled Desert Areas mainly in the States of Rajasthan and Gujarat.

ITBP

NEWS:

After helping the Tamil Nadu police beat stress, the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS) is now training Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) staff in combating stress and other psychological issues.

NIMHANS Registrar K. Sekar, who also heads the Centre for Disaster Management, said the institute had started the training following a proposal from ITBP.

The ITBP is deployed along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China, spanning 3,488 km. There are five pockets, three in Ladakh, one each in Uttarakhand and Arunachal Pradesh, that are not well defined and the territories are claimed by both countries.

ABOUT ITBP

The Indo-Tibetan Border Police is one of the seven Central Armed Police Forces of India, raised on 24 October 1962, under the CRPF Act, in the wake of the Sino-Indian War of 1962.

In the year 2004, in pursuance of GoM recommendations on “One Border One Force”, the entire stretch of India-China Border comprising 3488 Kms was assigned to the ITBP for Border Guarding duty and, accordingly, ITBP, replaced Assam Rifles in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh in 2004.

The motto of the Force is “Shaurya-Dridhata-Karma Nishtha” (Valour – Determination – Devotion to Duty).

 

FIRST EDITORIAL: DEVELOPMENT OF DISTRICT HOSPITALS ON PPP MODEL

 

WHY IN NEWS?

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, in the Union Budget speech, introduced the proposal and stated that those States that fully allow the facilities of the hospital to the medical college and wish to provide land at a concession would be eligible for viability gap funding.

WHY SUCH A ACTION?

To address the shortage of doctors in the country.

NITI Aayog study says that it is practically not possible for Central and State governments to bridge the gaps in medical education with their limited resources and finances, necessitating the formation of a PPP model, “combining the strengths of both sectors”.

EDITORIAL’S VIEW

DENT IN PUBLIC NATURE OF GOVERNMENT HOSPITALS: Allowing private parties to “operate and maintain the district hospital and provide healthcare services” could seriously dent public health services.

OPPOSITION IN SOUTHERN STATES: There is understandable opposition to the scheme in States such as Tamil Nadu that have a robust public health-care system, and a medical college in nearly every district. These States are naturally loath to turning over a key unit in their health-care network, which is running reasonably efficiently, to the private sector motivated by profit rather than public interest.

WHAT COULD BE DONE?

The government must consider raising health-care spending beyond the usual under 2% of GDP, and ensure more resources are available to provide free, quality health care to all. If it does stay on its path of giving the private sector some control over district hospitals, it will do well to be wary of the camel in the tent.

 

LEAD ARTICLE: TOWARDS COOPERATIVE FEDERALISM

WHY COOPERATIVE FEDERALISM IS IN NEWS?

TUSSLE DUE TO NRC AND NPR: As of January 28, the Chief Ministers of at least 11 States have expressed their unwillingness to implement the National Register of Citizens (NRC). Two of these States, West Bengal and Kerala, have stayed all work on the National Population Register (NPR), which is the foundational register from which the NRC will be built.

WHAT IF STATE DOES NOT FOLLOW THE GUIDELINE OF CENTER?

Article 355 enjoins the Union to “… ensure that the government of every State is carried on in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution”. Acting under its fiduciary duty towards the Constitution and the people of the State, the Union may also temporarily, and for restoring constitutional governance in a State, declare President’s rule in the State under Article 356.

Author highlights that no equivalent power rests in the hands of States to hold the Union Government to the Constitution.

A duty to obey all laws passed by Parliament is premised on an unbridled deference to the Union Government to correctly understand and implement the Constitution while passing laws. However, nowhere in the Constitution is there any suggestion that the Union has the final say as to what is “constitutional”.

STATES ARE NOT MERE APPENDAGES

After all, what sets Union Territories apart from States is the exclusive and distinct legislative and administrative competences of the States, to be acted on through their three organs of government. Thus, they cannot be reduced to mere administrative agencies entrusted with enforcing Parliament’s laws without any application of mind.

GROUND ON WHICH STATES CAN REJECT NRC-NPR

Among the exclusively delineated areas of legislative and executive competence of States is the power and responsibility of public order and police. The NPR-NRC exercise is likely to place an undue burden on every single citizen of India.

The Union, in compelling States to implement the NPR by ignoring the widespread dissent against it will be interfering with these exclusive powers of States. States, therefore, are entitled to more deference than mere reminders of their duty to obey Central laws.

CONCLUSION

The Union government can include States in how decisions are made and enforced, or it can depend on archaic emergency provisions to enforce its will. Not every disagreement between States and the Union is the same, and the Union must develop newer conventions to foster cooperation.

SECOND ARTICLE: WHAT BREXIT MEANS FOR EU?

WHY IN NEWS?

On January 31, 2020, the United Kingdom left the European Union.

AGREEMENT FOR TRANSITION PERIOD

Under this agreement, the EU and the U.K. agreed on a transition period, until the end of 2020 at least, during which the U.K. will continue to participate in the EU’s Customs Union and in the Single Market, and to apply EU law, even if it is no longer a Member State. During this period, the U.K. will also continue to abide by the international agreements of the EU, as we made clear in a note verbale to our international partners.

CHALLENGES AHEAD

Build a new partnership between the EU and the U.K.

It is perhaps a cliché but the basic truth is that today’s global challenges — from climate change, to cybercrime, terrorism or inequality — require collective responses. The more the U.K. is able to work in lockstep with the EU and together with partners around the world, the greater our chances of addressing these challenges effectively.

WILL EU BECOME WEAK AFTER BREXIT?

Together, the 27 Member States will continue to form a single market of 450 million citizens and more than 20 million businesses. Together, we remain the largest trading bloc in the world. Together, at 27, we are still the world’s largest development aid donor.

SECOND EDITORIAL: AUSTRALIAN OPEN

Novak Djokovic on Sunday, captured his eighth title in Melbourne and 17th Grand Slam overall following a nearly four-hour, five-set duel with an inspired Dominic Thiem.

American Sofia Kenin, a counter-puncher blessed with magical hands, becoming the eighth first-time champion from the last 12 Grand Slam events. Youngest Australian Open champion since Maria Sharapova in 2008.

OP-ED PAGE

FIRST ARTICLE: NON VIOLENCE AS AN ART OF RESISTANCE

WHY PEOPLE GO FOR VIOLENCE?

First, it tempts us because it activates and nurtures our egos; in fact, the devastating wars that have taken place in the name of the ‘glory’ of the nation reveal our collective and cumulative egos.

Second, it excites the surface personality; it stimulates brute instincts, and leads to some sort of catharsis or immediate instinctual gratification.

Third, it is appealing because it does not demand the honest labour of self-reflection. Instead, we are led to believe that the problem lies necessarily always outside, and hence the annihilation of the ‘enemy’ out there is seen to be the only way to our redemption.

WHAT HAPPENED TO THOSE WHO ADVOCATED NON VIOLENCE?

Jesus was crucified; Gandhi was assassinated; and John Lennon was killed.

CONCLUSION

We are passing through terribly difficult times. With the rise of right wing nationalism in different parts of the world, the culture of violence has acquired a new dimension. And in our own country, the non-dialogic ruling regime with its propaganda machinery is turning everything into its opposite: vice into virtue, hatred into patriotism, and hyper-masculine aggression into religion. Yet, as I see the pockets of resistance, I begin to believe that the quest for non-violence cannot be finished.

OPERATION VANILLA

NEWS: 

India’s flood relief mission to Madagascar will be followed up this week with the island’s Defence Minister Rakotonirina Leon Jean Richard visiting Lucknow and Delhi from Tuesday — the first such high-level trip since Delhi incorporated the island off the coast of Africa into the “Indian Ocean Region (IOR)”.

Last week, the Indian Navy conducted “Operation Vanilla”, with INS Airavat delivering relief material such as food, clothing, medicines and water. Officials said the humanitarian gesture by New Delhi also showcased India’s strategic capabilities in the furthermost islands of the IOR.

“INS Airavat delivers relief supplies to cyclone-hit Madagascar. SAGAR Policy at work — India as an early responder,” External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar tweeted about the operation on Sunday, referring to India’s policy of “Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR)” for IOR islands.

The SAGAR concept was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in March 2015, during his visit to Mauritius and other Indian Ocean islands. At the time, Madagascar, Comoros and the French island of Reunion were a part of the East and South Africa Division at the External Affairs Ministry.

 

 

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