The Hindu News Analysis 11 January 2021

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Questions :-

TiHAN-IIT, India’s first Test bed for Autonomous Navigation Systems (Terrestrial and Aerial) will be established at?

a.   IIT Chennai
b.   IIT Bombay
c.   IIT Kharagpur
d.   IIT Hyderabad

2)Digital Ocean, the first of its kind digital platform for Ocean Data Management was launched by?

a.   Ministry of Earth sciences
b.   Ministry of Science and Technology
c.   Indian Space Research Organization
d.   Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change

3)Committee headed by G Kishan Reddy is formed for which of the following tasks?

a.   Formulating Data Protection Bill.
b.   Protecting the language, culture and land of Ladakh.
c.   Drafting Science, Technology and Innovation Policy.
d.   Recommendations on Inner Line Permit System

News:- NHRC recommends measures against manual scavenging

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has made a series of recommendations to the Centre to eradicate manual scavenging.

Manual scavenging: It is the practice of manually cleaning, carrying, disposing of or handling human excreta. According to the 2011 Census, there are more than 26 Lakh insanitary latrines in the country and the existence of insanitary latrines is the main reason for manual scavenging.

Key Recommendations of NHRC:

Broaden the definition of manual scavenging to cover other types of hazardous cleaning or enact a new law for it.

A penal section may be put in law to prevent the discrimination and harassment faced by the children of manual scavengers and women manual scavengers.

Rehabilitation process of manual scavengers may be linked to schemes under which they can immediately start earning like MNREGA and revisit to see how they and their families are doing;

Compensation: The amount of compensation paid as one time cash assistance for rehabilitation of manual scavengers may be enhanced from Rs. 40,000/- to Rs. 1 Lakh.

Nodal authority/department that will bear the expense of such Compensation may also be clearly specified;

Ensure to remove the role of middlemen by making provision like direct benefit transfer or by collaborating with NGOs;

Strict Action against local authorities who employ people to work as manual scavengers; An App and a toll-free number for registration of complaints;

The National Crime Research Bureau (NCRB) to monitor the sewer deaths and data reflected in its report;

Union Finance Ministry may designate particular Nationalized Bank for each State to take-up the responsibility of extending loans to the Manual Scavengers and their dependents’ up to Rs.10.00 lakhs to take up the business Activity;

Either individual or group insurances must be provided to Manual Scavengers and the premium shall be paid by the concerned Local Bodies;

NCSK :- National Commission for Safai Karmcharis : – This was Formed after NCSK Act of 1993. Then It Functioned as Statutory body till 2004 and then the Act expired. After that NCSK has been functioning by extension and is currently a non-statutory body.

2)Recently, India and Mongolia have reviewed bilateral cooperation in hydrocarbons and steel sectors.

India reiterated its commitment to timely completion of the Mongol Refinery Project, the country’s 1st oil refinery.

The greenfield Mongol Refinery Project is being built under a Line of Credit from the Government of India.

It is expected to cut some of Mongolia’s fuel import dependence.

According to a recent report, India will overtake China as the largest importer of coking coal by 2025.

India-Mongolia relations:-

Historical Relations:

India and Mongolia have interacted through Buddhism throughout history.

Diplomatic Relations:

India, the first country outside the former Soviet bloc of nations to open diplomatic relations with Mongolia in 1955, has upgraded ties with Mongolia to a strategic partnership.

In 2015, Mongolia witnessed the first ever visit by the Prime Minister of India (a part of India’s Act East policy).

International Cooperation:

Mongolia has publicly reiterated its support for India’s membership to the permanent seat of the expanded United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

India has played an important role in getting Mongolia membership to key international forums, including the United Nations (UN), despite strong opposition from China and Taiwan. India also championed the inclusion of Mongolia in the Non-Aligned Movement.

Other Forums of which both the countries are members: Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), World Trade Organisation (WTO).

India is a member whereas Mongolia is an observer state at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

3)Bird flu: Sanjay Lake declared ‘alert zone’ :– Amid a bird flu scare in different parts of the country, 17 more ducks were found dead at Sanjay Lake (is in New Delhi).

4)Arunachal harbours a vanadium source:- Arunachal Pradesh, considered a sleeping hydropower giant, is likely to become India’s prime producer of vanadium, a high value metal used in strengthening steel and titanium.
Exploration being carried out by the Geological Survey of India (GSI) has placed the eastern Himalayan State on the vanadium map of the country, and geologists are confident of identifying a deposit soon.

India is a significant consumer of vanadium, but is not a primary producer of the strategic metal. It is recovered as a byproduct from the slag collected from the processing of vanadiferous magnetite ores (iron ore), GSI officials said.

According to data provided by the GSI, India consumed 4% of about 84,000 tonnes of vanadium produced across the globe. China, which produces 57% of the world’s vanadium, consumed 44% of the metal.

Vanadium in the palaeoproterozoic carbonaceous phyllite rocks in the Depo and Tamang areas of Papum Pare district in Arunachal Pradesh.


Central Vista Project And Issues :-

Author says that the SC has recently approved the Central vista project :- The judgment delivered on January 5 in Rajeev Suri v. Delhi Development Authority, in which a 2:1 majority of the Court granted its imprimatur to the proposed redevelopment of the Central Vista in the national capital, fits the trend.

Author says that two major issues are there :-

  1. The Plan for the Central Vista has been changed without any deliberation and consultation with the public.
  2. Environmental clearance been provided to the project without any scientific basis.

Author says that the Consultation is necessary since the impact of the project will be irreversible. Also the author says that Right to complete information is very essential part of the Rights.

Although objections were invited from the public, a mere three days’
notice was given for the hearing on those complaints.

Other issue :- Any civic participation can be productive only if complete information is placed in the public domain.

In this case, the Board of Enquiry and Hearing (BoEH) which was appointed to consider the objections raised on the change in the land use, recognised the merit in the objectors’ plea that the full details of the project were not made available.

EDITORIAL 2:- The front seat in electric mobility

Author says that India is slightly shifting towards the Electrical vehicles.
FAME and FAME -2 schemes are running ( Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of the Hybrid and Electric Vehicles).

Also author says that the India has pledged to have 30% of the Electric vehicles in the roads till 2030.

Author says the this shift towards the Electrical Vehicles will increase the importance of Latin American countries like Argentina, Bolivia and Chile since there are having the highest reserves of Lithium.

Shifting towards the Electrical Vehicles is essential in order to decrease the import bill. Also India recently was the 3rd biggest importer of the Oil, also India needs to develop the capacity in the Battery in order to make the shift towards the electrical vehicles.

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