The Hindu Newspaper 18th April 2020

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1) The National Green Tribunal can hear cases related to which of the following Acts?
1. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974.
2. The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
3. The Biological Diversity Act, 2002.
4. Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
Select the correct answer code:
a) 1, 2, 3
b) 2, 3, 4
c) 1, 2, 4
d) 1, 2, 3, 4

Solution:-These include the following:
The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974;
The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977;
The Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980;
The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981;
The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986;
The Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991;

2)Ecological Succession is generally characterized by
1. Increased productivity
2. Decreased niche development
3. Increased complexity of food webs
Select the correct answer code:
a) 1, 2

b) 1, 3

c) 2, 3
d) 1, 2, 3

3)“A large tree shades a small plant, retarding the growth of the small plant. The small plant has no effect on  the large tree” this example is related to which type of biotic interaction?

a) Commensalism
b) Amensalism
c) Competition
d) Neutralism


DNA vs RNA :-


DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid)RNA (Ribonucleic acid)
It is a long polymer. It has a deoxyribose and phosphate backbone having four distinct bases: thymine, adenine, cytosine, and guanine.Is a polymer with a ribose and phosphate backbone with four varying bases: uracil, cytosine, adenine, and guanine.
It is located in the nucleus of a cell and in the mitochondria.It is found in the cytoplasm, nucleus, and in the ribosome.
Sugar portion
It has 2-deoxyribose.It has Ribose.
DNA is functional is the transmission of genetic information. It forms as a media for long-term storage.RNA is functional is the transmission of the genetic code that is necessary for the protein creation from the nucleus to the ribosome.
Predominant Structure
The DNA is a double-stranded molecule that has a long chain of nucleotides.The RNA is a single-stranded molecule which has a shorter chain of nucleotides.
DNA replicates on its own, it is self-replicating.RNA does not replicate on its own. It is synthesized from DNA when required.
Nitrogenous Bases and Pairing
The base pairing is as follows: GC(Guanine pairs with Cytosine) A-T(Adenine pairs with Thymine).The base pairing is as follows: GC(Guanine pairs with Cytosine) A-U(Adenine pairs with Uracil).

News :- RBI to pump in ₹1 lakh crore 

Among the measures announced was liquidity infusion of ₹1 lakh crore, of which ₹50,000 crore is exclusively for non-banking finance companies (NBFCs), via banks.

The NBFCs have experienced liquidity shortage since banks have not offered them any moratorium for repayment, while these entities have had to extend the moratorium option to their customers.The RBI will extend another ₹50,000 crore to refinancing agencies like Nabard, Sidbi and National Housing Bank.

National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)
NABARD is a development bank focussing primarily on the rural sector of the country. It is the apex banking institution to provide finance for Agriculture and rural development. Its headquarter is located in Mumbai, the country’s financial capital.

It is responsible for the development of the small industries, cottage industries, and any other such village or rural projects.

It is a statutory body established in 1982 under Parliamentary act-National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development Act, 1981.

It supervises Cooperative Banks and Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) and helping them develop sound banking practices and integrate them to the CBS (Core Banking Solution) platform.

  • NABARD was established on the recommendations of B.Sivaramman Committee.
  • NABARD is 100% GOI entity.

Reserve Bank of India is the central bank of the country with sole right to regulate the banking industry and supervise the various institutions/banks that also include NABARD defined under Banking Regulation Act of 1949

2)NBFC :- A Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC) is a company registered under the Companies Act, 1956 engaged in the business of loans and advances, acquisition of shares/stocks/bonds/debentures/securities issued by Government or local authority or other marketable securities of a like nature, leasing, hire-purchase, insurance business, chit business but does not include any institution whose principal business is that of agriculture activity, industrial activity, purchase or sale of any goods (other than securities) or providing any services and sale/purchase/construction
of immovable property.

What is difference between banks & NBFCs?

NBFCs lend and make investments and hence their activities are akin to that of banks; however there are a few differences as given below:

  • NBFC cannot accept demand deposits;
  • NBFCs do not form part of the payment and settlement system and cannot issue cheques drawn on itself;
  • deposit insurance facility of Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation is not available to depositors of NBFCs, unlike in case of banks.

3) SIDBI :- Small industrial Development Bank of India (SIDBI) is a development financial institution in India, headquartered at Lucknow and having its offices all over the country.

Its purpose is to provide refinance facilities and short term lending to industries, and serves as the principal financial institution in the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector. SIDBI also coordinates the functions of institutions engaged in similar activities. It was established on April 2, 1990, through an Act of Parliament. It is headquartered in Lucknow.

SIDBI operates under the Department of Financial Services, Government of India.

SBI holds most shares in SIDBI (16.73 %) then GOI(15.4) then LIC (14.25%).

4)Minor forest produce in exemption list:- Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has added the collection, harvest and process of minor forest produce to the list of activities that will be permitted.

Minor forest produce include non-timber items such as bamboo, roots,seeds, fruits, flowers andplants. A number of peoplefrom the Scheduled Tribes and other forest dwelling communities depend onthe collection and sale of such items for their livelihood.

5)Tribals using indigenous practices to sustain during lockdown:- Tribal communities in southern Rajasthan are utilising their indigenous practices of food and agricultural management to tide over the difficult period of nationwide lockdown enforced to control the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tribals have adopted a number of micronutrient rich plant foods as their daily dietary  habits.

The region’s commonly consumed foodgrains and vegetables, such as rajan, dhimda, kodra, bati, baota, kang,cheena, hama, hamli and gujro, are rich in iron and dietary fibre content. The consumption of these grains and maintenance of diverse food habits based on the locally available oilseeds, pulses, fruits and spices have helped the tribal people develop immunity against diseases.

6)Fact sheet :- Siddalingeshwara temple car festival at Rawoor village in Kalaburagi districtof Karnataka.

7)New indigenous kit may soon accelerate testing:- The Chitra GeneLAMP-N, made by scientists at the Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST).

Based on :- N-Gene Test

The N-Genetest is a confirmatory test and widely employed in Germany and China among other countries.

However, the design of it is complicatedand can be expensive. However, India has managed to develop it satisfactorily while keeping costs low.

Some methods of Virus Testing :-

i) Rapid-Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction (RTPCR) tests are considered the gold standard for detecting the virus.

It involves extracting RNA from a swab, collected from the throat or nose, converting it into DNA, magnifying the quantity of DNA and using chemical probes to bind target genes that distinguish SARSCoV-2 from other viruses.

ii)By employing its in-house technology called reverse transcriptase loop mediated amplification of viral nucleic acid (RTLAMP),

it zooms inon regions of the virus’ nucleocaspid (N) gene and can analyse a batch in 10 minutes.

Editorial of the Day :-

1)A virus, social democracy, and dividends for Kerala :-

Central Theme:- kerala has  managed  the  crisis  by  building  on  legacies  of  egalitarianism,  social  rights  and  public  trust

Crisis and Rebound in Kerala:- Though  Kerala  was  the  first  State with  a  recorded  case  of  coronavirus  and  once  led  the  country  in  active  cases,  it  now  ranks  10th  of  all States  and  the  total  number  of  active  cases  (in  a  State  that  has  done the  most  aggressive  testing  in  In dia)  has  been  declining  for  over  a week  and  is  now  below  the  number  of  recovered  cases.

How Kerala developed Social Contact and Social Democracy :- In  Kerala,  the  social pact  itself  emerged  from  recurrent episodes  of  popular  mobilisation — from  the  temple  entry  move ment  of  the  1930s,  to  the  peasant and  workers’  movements  in  the 1950s  and  1960s,  a  mass  literacy movement in  the  1980s,  the  Kerala Sasthra  Sahithya  Parishad  (KSSP) led  movement  for  people’s  decen tralised  planning  in  the  1990s, and,  most  recently,  various  gender and  environmental  movements.

Other Reasons:-

  • Competitive Party system
  • Active civil society
  • Good Public Healthcare amid so much Privatization.
  • Strong Local Government

How it fought corona:-

  • Rigorous Testing
  • Door to door delivery by using volunteers and already active civil society.
  • Schemes like Kudumbshree and community kitchen.
  • Relief package of 20000 crore even before lockdown was announced.

Editorial 2 :-

Institutional fixes and the need for ethical politics

Central Theme :- Critique of Anti defection law.

Now a days we are seeing a new mechanism of Bypassing the Anti-defection law.

Under this  novel  method,  a  set  of  legislators of  the  party  in  power  is  made to  resign  from  the  Assembly  to  reduce  the  total  strength  of  the House  enough  for  the  other party to  cross the  halfway  mark  to  form  government.

This mass exodus happened in Karnataka, there the Speaker gave a very good decision to disqualify and also not permit the legislators for bye polls. (but s.c upheld only disqualification and not bar from bye polls).

The  constitutionality of  the  Tenth  Schedule  was  challenged  for  violating  the  Basic Structure  of  Constitution  with  regard  to  parliamentary  democracy and  free  speech,  but  the  Supreme Court  in  Kihoto  Hollohan  v.  Zachill hu  (1992)  in  a  32  verdict  upheld the  law  while  reserving  the  right  of judicial  review  of  the  Speaker’s decision.

2 Broad Criticisms:- Hence,  the  anti-defection  law, on the  one hand,  severely  restricts the  freedom  of  a  legislator  and makes  her  a  slave  of  party  whips.

On the  other  hand,  it  has  not  been able  to  meet  its  primary  objective of  preventing  horse trading  and continues  to  be  circumvented  to bring  down  elected  governments.

Solution to the Problems:-

For  addressing  the  first  issue,  as  the  Dinesh  Goswami  Committee  also  suggested,  the  scope  of the  binding  whip  should  be  res tricted  to  a  vote  of  confidence.

For addressing  the  second  issue,  it is best  to  institutionalise  the  Karnataka  Speaker’s  decision  to  bar  the defected  members  from  contest ing  in  the  ensuing  bypoll,  if  not  for a longer  period,  and  thereby  disin centivise  MLAs  from  jumping  ship.

Editorial 3 :-A season of change

About IMDs changed monsoon normal:-

The  agency follows  a  two stage  forecast system:  indicating  in  April  whether  there  are chances  of drought  or  any  other  anomaly  and  then  a  second  up date,  in  late  June,  with  a  more  granular  look  at  how  the monsoon  will  likely  distribute  over  the  country  and whether  danger  signs  are  imminent.

Normal’  means India  will  get  100%  of  its  long  period  average,  with  a  potential  5%  error  margin.

In  April  last  year,  it  said  the  monsoon  would  be ‘near  normal’,  an  arbitrary category.  Private  forecasters expected  a shortfall,  predicated  on  the  development  of a future  El  Niño.

Recent two changes :-

It  made  two  key  changes  this  year:

  1. reducing  the  definition  of  ‘normal’  rainfall  by  1  cm,  to  88 cm  and, (LongPeriodAverage- 1961-2010 from 1951-2000)
  2. officially  updating  monsoon  onset  and  arrival dates  for  many  States.

The  monsoon  was  ar riving  later  in  many  places,  had  long  weak  spells,  and lingered  longer.

This  has  already  heralded  thinking,  in the  agency,  on  whether  India  should  move  to  a  new monsoon accounting  calendar  instead  of  the  century long  tradition  of  June-September.

10)Kisan Rath will link farmers to transport options :- In a bid to ease the disruption of agricultural supply chains, especially for perishable produce, the Agriculture Ministry has launched a Kisan Rath mobile application, which will connect farmers and traders to a network of more than 5 lakh trucks and 20,000 tractors.

The application, developed by the National Informatics Centre, is meant to help farmers and tradersnwho are searching for vehicles to move produce.











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