Current Affairs 11th January, 2019

PAPER – 1

Topics Covered

1. Art and Culture including Architecture and literature from ancient India to modern India

Sanskriti Kumbh

Image result for Sanskriti Kumbh

What to read?

Prelims – About Kumbh Mela and Sanskriti Kumbh

Mains – Significance of Kumbh Mela in promoting Unity in Diversity

The biggest cultural festival named Sanskriti Kumbh is celebrating the conglomeration of Spiritual Consciousness and Cultural Heritage of India in the main premises of Kumbh Mela area in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh. 

Kumbh Mela

The Kumbh Mela (the festival of the sacred pitcher) is anchored in Hindu mythology. It is the largest public gathering and collective act of faith, anywhere in the world. The Mela draws tens of millions of pilgrims over the course of approximately 55 auspicious days to bathe at the sacred confluence of the Ganga, the Yamuna, and the mystical Sarasvati. Primarily, this congregation includes Ascetics, Saints, Sadhus, Sadhvis, Kalpvasis, and Pilgrims from all walks of life.

Celebration

Kumbh Mela is a religious pilgrimage that is celebrated four times over a course of 12 years. The geographical location of Kumbh Mela spans over four locations in India and the Mela site keeps rotating between one of the four pilgrimage places on four sacred rivers as listed below:

  • Haridwar on the Ganges in Uttarakhand.

  • Ujjain on the Shipra in Madhya Pradesh.

  • Nashik on the Godavari in Maharashtra.

  • Prayagraj at the confluence of the Ganges, the Yamuna, and the mythical Sarasvati in Uttar Pradesh.

Significance of the celebration

Image result for Sanskriti Kumbh

  • The Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India is organizing Sanskriti Kumbh with intent to showcase the rich Cultural Heritage of India in all its rich and varied dimensions viz. Performing Arts- Folk, Tribal and Classical art forms, Handicrafts, Cuisines, Exhibitions etc. all in one place.

  • With a view to promote and reconnect the people especially the youth with our magnificent and multifaceted culture along with the opulence and its historical significance. The Unity in Diversity characteristic of India also reaches its prime level with such a glorious event.

  • In order to promote this event digitally , a massive exercise in the online and social media sphere is being undertaken

  • The folk dances, representing states from EAST WEST NORTH SOUTH India, will showcase the spirit of Unity in Diversity that is Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat.

  • Under the banner of Sanskriti Kumbh ,  Rashtriya Shilp Mela is being organized in the premises of NCZCC where Shilp Haats are set up to display handicrafts and live demonstration of the skill by craftsmen.

Probable Mains Question

India lives in its Cultural diversity while religions and regions integrate their uniqueness to give Indian way of life.


PAPER – 2 and PAPER - 3

Topics Covered

1. Governance

2. Conservation of Environment

National Clean Air Programme

What to read?

Prelims – About NCAP, Similar plans like Air Quality Index

Mains – Problem of Air pollution in India and steps taken

Image result for national clean air programme

National Clean Air Programme

  • Collaborative and participatory approach involving relevant Central Ministries, State Governments, local bodies and other Stakeholders with focus on all sources of pollution forms the crux of the Programme.

  • The tentative national level target of 20%–30% reduction of PM2.5 and PM10 concentration by 2024 is proposed under the NCAP taking 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration.

  • Overall objective of the NCAP is comprehensive mitigation actions for prevention, control and abatement of air pollution besides augmenting the air quality monitoring network across the country and strengthening the awareness and capacity building activities

  • Duration

The NCAP will be a mid-term, five-year action plan with 2019 as the first year. However, the international experiences and national studies indicate that significant outcome in terms of air pollution initiatives are visible only in the long-term, and hence the programme may be further extended to a longer time horizon after a mid-term review of the outcomes.

  • Other features

Increasing number of monitoring stations in the country including rural monitoring stations, technology support, emphasis on awareness and capacity building initiatives, setting up of certification agencies for monitoring equipment, source apportionment studies, emphasis on enforcement, specific sectoral interventions etc.

Urbanisation and Air pollution

  • NCAP is a path breaking initiative and one of the most critical and most significant programme as it addresses one of the most alarming challenges of urbanization i.e. air pollution

  • Today cities occupy just 3% of the land, but contribute to 82% of GDP and responsible for 78% of Carbon dioxide emissions; cities though are engines of growth and equity but they have to be sustainable and it is in this context that NCAP being a very inclusive program holds special relevance

NCAP in Smart Cities

Image result for national clean air programme

  • There will be use of the Smart Cities program to launch the NCAP in the 43 smart cities falling in the list of the 102 non-attainment cities. The NCAP is envisaged to be dynamic and will continue to evolve based on the additional scientific and technical information as they emerge.

  • City specific action plans are being formulated for 102 non-attainment cities identified for implementing mitigation actions under NCAP. Cities have already prepared action plans in consultation with CPCB

Probable Mains Question

Describe in detail how the National Clean air Programme is inclusive and analyse how flexible is the programme to future application with growth in air pollution threats.



PAPER – 1 and PAPER – 3

Topics Covered

1. Society

2. Defence

Adultery, Homosexuality not acceptable in Army

Image result for Adultery, Homosexuality not acceptable in Army

What to read?

Prelims – Fundamental Rights- Article 33

Mains – Recent Supreme Court verdict over adultery and Homosexuality to common people

Adultery and homosexuality have been decriminalised in the country by the Supreme Court, but the Army is “conservative” and they will not be allowed to “perpetuate into the Army,” Army chief General Bipin Rawat said.

Article 33 of Indian Constitution

  • Article 33 empowers the parliament (not state legislature) to restrict or abrogate the fundamental rights of the members of armed forces, paramilitary forces & analogous forces.

  • Main aim for this provision is to ensure the proper discharge of their duties and to maintain discipline amongst them.

Army’s view

  • The armed forces find huge resonance in the conservative actions of our society. The Army is conservative.

  • Army has neither modernised nor Westernised

  • A soldier on the border could not be worried and he had to be “reasonably assured that his family is being cared for.”

  • Apology for History – Army asked the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer) community to forgive history for their brutal suppression.

Arguments against

  • There has been no clarity on how it would affect the Army, which punishes adultery for “stealing the affection of brother officer’s wife” and has a strict ‘no’ policy on homosexuality.

  • Stating that the Army is “certainly are not above the country’s law,” Gen. Rawat said that when one joined the Army, some of the rights and privileges authorised for civilians by the Constitution were not authorised for them [the Army].

Homosexuality and Adultery accepted in Armies worldwide

‘Adultery, homosexuality not acceptable in Army’, says Gen. Bipin Rawat

PAPER – 2 AND PAPER – 3

Topics covered

1. Governmental Intervention for the protection of weaker and vulnerable sections of the society

2. Indian Economy

Universal Basic Income

Image result for universal basic income


What to read?

Prelims: UBI- key facts, achievements of Sikkim.

Mains: UBI in India- need, concerns, challenges and alternatives.

Sikkim’s ruling party recently declared to include the Universal Basic Income scheme in its manifesto ahead of the Assembly election in 2019 and aims to implement it by 2022. If everything goes according to the plan, it will be the first state to implement UBI in India.

Sikkim has set up examples in the country in different areas in the past also, some of them being:

  • Sikkim is the best state for women in the workplace, thanks to its high rates of female workforce participation, there’s less crime against women.

  • Sikkim’s literacy rate increased to 82.2% from 68.8% in 2001, among the country’s highest.

  • Sikkim is the least populated state in India, has its per capita GDP growing in double digits since 2004-05.

  • Sikkim also decreased its poverty ratio by 22% to 51,000 (8.2%) in 2011-12 from 1.7 lakh (30.9%) in 2004-05.

  • Sikkim also became the first fully organic state.

Universal Basic Income

Universal Basic Income (UBI) is a programme for providing all citizens of a country or other geographic area/state with a given sum of money, regardless of their income, resources or employment status.

The main idea behind UBI is to prevent or reduce poverty and increase equality among citizens. The essential principle behind Universal basic income is the idea that all citizens are entitled to a livable income, irrespective of the circumstances they’re born in.

Probable Mains Question

Examine the arguments in favour and against introduction of universal basic income.

 

PAPER – 1

Topics Covered

1. Art and Culture including Architecture and literature from ancient India to modern India

Sanskriti Kumbh

Image result for Sanskriti Kumbh

What to read?

Prelims – About Kumbh Mela and Sanskriti Kumbh

Mains – Significance of Kumbh Mela in promoting Unity in Diversity

The biggest cultural festival named Sanskriti Kumbh is celebrating the conglomeration of Spiritual Consciousness and Cultural Heritage of India in the main premises of Kumbh Mela area in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh. 

Kumbh Mela

The Kumbh Mela (the festival of the sacred pitcher) is anchored in Hindu mythology. It is the largest public gathering and collective act of faith, anywhere in the world. The Mela draws tens of millions of pilgrims over the course of approximately 55 auspicious days to bathe at the sacred confluence of the Ganga, the Yamuna, and the mystical Sarasvati. Primarily, this congregation includes Ascetics, Saints, Sadhus, Sadhvis, Kalpvasis, and Pilgrims from all walks of life.

Celebration

Kumbh Mela is a religious pilgrimage that is celebrated four times over a course of 12 years. The geographical location of Kumbh Mela spans over four locations in India and the Mela site keeps rotating between one of the four pilgrimage places on four sacred rivers as listed below:

  • Haridwar on the Ganges in Uttarakhand.

  • Ujjain on the Shipra in Madhya Pradesh.

  • Nashik on the Godavari in Maharashtra.

  • Prayagraj at the confluence of the Ganges, the Yamuna, and the mythical Sarasvati in Uttar Pradesh.

Significance of the celebration

Image result for Sanskriti Kumbh

  • The Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India is organizing Sanskriti Kumbh with intent to showcase the rich Cultural Heritage of India in all its rich and varied dimensions viz. Performing Arts- Folk, Tribal and Classical art forms, Handicrafts, Cuisines, Exhibitions etc. all in one place.

  • With a view to promote and reconnect the people especially the youth with our magnificent and multifaceted culture along with the opulence and its historical significance. The Unity in Diversity characteristic of India also reaches its prime level with such a glorious event.

  • In order to promote this event digitally , a massive exercise in the online and social media sphere is being undertaken

  • The folk dances, representing states from EAST WEST NORTH SOUTH India, will showcase the spirit of Unity in Diversity that is Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat.

  • Under the banner of Sanskriti Kumbh ,  Rashtriya Shilp Mela is being organized in the premises of NCZCC where Shilp Haats are set up to display handicrafts and live demonstration of the skill by craftsmen.

Probable Mains Question

India lives in its Cultural diversity while religions and regions integrate their uniqueness to give Indian way of life.


PAPER – 2 and PAPER - 3

Topics Covered

1. Governance

2. Conservation of Environment

National Clean Air Programme

What to read?

Prelims – About NCAP, Similar plans like Air Quality Index

Mains – Problem of Air pollution in India and steps taken

Image result for national clean air programme

National Clean Air Programme

  • Collaborative and participatory approach involving relevant Central Ministries, State Governments, local bodies and other Stakeholders with focus on all sources of pollution forms the crux of the Programme.

  • The tentative national level target of 20%–30% reduction of PM2.5 and PM10 concentration by 2024 is proposed under the NCAP taking 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration.

  • Overall objective of the NCAP is comprehensive mitigation actions for prevention, control and abatement of air pollution besides augmenting the air quality monitoring network across the country and strengthening the awareness and capacity building activities

  • Duration

The NCAP will be a mid-term, five-year action plan with 2019 as the first year. However, the international experiences and national studies indicate that significant outcome in terms of air pollution initiatives are visible only in the long-term, and hence the programme may be further extended to a longer time horizon after a mid-term review of the outcomes.

  • Other features

Increasing number of monitoring stations in the country including rural monitoring stations, technology support, emphasis on awareness and capacity building initiatives, setting up of certification agencies for monitoring equipment, source apportionment studies, emphasis on enforcement, specific sectoral interventions etc.

Urbanisation and Air pollution

  • NCAP is a path breaking initiative and one of the most critical and most significant programme as it addresses one of the most alarming challenges of urbanization i.e. air pollution

  • Today cities occupy just 3% of the land, but contribute to 82% of GDP and responsible for 78% of Carbon dioxide emissions; cities though are engines of growth and equity but they have to be sustainable and it is in this context that NCAP being a very inclusive program holds special relevance

NCAP in Smart Cities

Image result for national clean air programme

  • There will be use of the Smart Cities program to launch the NCAP in the 43 smart cities falling in the list of the 102 non-attainment cities. The NCAP is envisaged to be dynamic and will continue to evolve based on the additional scientific and technical information as they emerge.

  • City specific action plans are being formulated for 102 non-attainment cities identified for implementing mitigation actions under NCAP. Cities have already prepared action plans in consultation with CPCB

Probable Mains Question

Describe in detail how the National Clean air Programme is inclusive and analyse how flexible is the programme to future application with growth in air pollution threats.



PAPER – 1 and PAPER – 3

Topics Covered

1. Society

2. Defence

Adultery, Homosexuality not acceptable in Army

Image result for Adultery, Homosexuality not acceptable in Army

What to read?

Prelims – Fundamental Rights- Article 33

Mains – Recent Supreme Court verdict over adultery and Homosexuality to common people

Adultery and homosexuality have been decriminalised in the country by the Supreme Court, but the Army is “conservative” and they will not be allowed to “perpetuate into the Army,” Army chief General Bipin Rawat said.

Article 33 of Indian Constitution

  • Article 33 empowers the parliament (not state legislature) to restrict or abrogate the fundamental rights of the members of armed forces, paramilitary forces & analogous forces.

  • Main aim for this provision is to ensure the proper discharge of their duties and to maintain discipline amongst them.

Army’s view

  • The armed forces find huge resonance in the conservative actions of our society. The Army is conservative.

  • Army has neither modernised nor Westernised

  • A soldier on the border could not be worried and he had to be “reasonably assured that his family is being cared for.”

  • Apology for History – Army asked the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer) community to forgive history for their brutal suppression.

Arguments against

  • There has been no clarity on how it would affect the Army, which punishes adultery for “stealing the affection of brother officer’s wife” and has a strict ‘no’ policy on homosexuality.

  • Stating that the Army is “certainly are not above the country’s law,” Gen. Rawat said that when one joined the Army, some of the rights and privileges authorised for civilians by the Constitution were not authorised for them [the Army].

Homosexuality and Adultery accepted in Armies worldwide

‘Adultery, homosexuality not acceptable in Army’, says Gen. Bipin Rawat

PAPER – 2 AND PAPER – 3

Topics covered

1. Governmental Intervention for the protection of weaker and vulnerable sections of the society

2. Indian Economy

Universal Basic Income

Image result for universal basic income


What to read?

Prelims: UBI- key facts, achievements of Sikkim.

Mains: UBI in India- need, concerns, challenges and alternatives.

Sikkim’s ruling party recently declared to include the Universal Basic Income scheme in its manifesto ahead of the Assembly election in 2019 and aims to implement it by 2022. If everything goes according to the plan, it will be the first state to implement UBI in India.

Sikkim has set up examples in the country in different areas in the past also, some of them being:

  • Sikkim is the best state for women in the workplace, thanks to its high rates of female workforce participation, there’s less crime against women.

  • Sikkim’s literacy rate increased to 82.2% from 68.8% in 2001, among the country’s highest.

  • Sikkim is the least populated state in India, has its per capita GDP growing in double digits since 2004-05.

  • Sikkim also decreased its poverty ratio by 22% to 51,000 (8.2%) in 2011-12 from 1.7 lakh (30.9%) in 2004-05.

  • Sikkim also became the first fully organic state.

Universal Basic Income

Universal Basic Income (UBI) is a programme for providing all citizens of a country or other geographic area/state with a given sum of money, regardless of their income, resources or employment status.

The main idea behind UBI is to prevent or reduce poverty and increase equality among citizens. The essential principle behind Universal basic income is the idea that all citizens are entitled to a livable income, irrespective of the circumstances they’re born in.

Probable Mains Question

Examine the arguments in favour and against introduction of universal basic income.