Daily Current Affairs: 24th November 2019: The Hindu+PIB
The following compilation has been made keeping in mind the need of the UPSC IAS exam. Each and every topic which has been included in this compilation is taken from very authentic and relevant source including The Hindu, The Indian Express, Business Standard, Press Information Bureau, etc. As per the evolving pattern of the UPSC IAS prelims and mains exam each and every topic has been handpicked keeping in mind the syllabus of the exam.
General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA)
Context: South Korea has decided to continue a 2016 military intelligence-sharing agreement with Japan that it previously said it would terminate amid ongoing tensions over wartime history and trade as part of major policy reversal.
Background Previously, South Korea had decided to discontinue the intelligence pact called the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) by November 22, unless Japan decided to review its export control measures. The idea to exchange intelligence between Japan and South Korea under GSOMIA was felt amidst a growing threat from North Korea, especially when it started conducting nuclear tests and developing ballistic missiles. The agreement was eventually signed in November 2016. In recent years, the relationship between South Korea and Japan has deteriorated, given the territorial dispute over the Dokdo islands — known as Takeshima in Japan. While South Korea controls them, the islands are claimed by Japan. About the dispute Also known as the Liancourt Rocks dispute, it is a territorial dispute between South Korea and Japan. Both countries claim sovereignty over the Liancourt Rocks, a group of small islets in the Sea of Japan which are referred to as “Dokdo” in Korean and “Takeshima” in Japanese. North Korea also claims sovereignty of the islands. The Liancourt Rocks have been administered by South Korea since 1954 by the Korea Coast Guard. This action was taken after the United States stated in the Rusk documents that the Japanese claim to the Liancourt Rocks would not be renounced in Japan’s post-World-War-II peace treaty. In 1954, Japan proposed a reference to the International Court of Justice, which South Korea rejected, believing that the Liancourt Rocks are irrefutably South Korean territories, and thus should not be dealt through diplomatic negotiations or judicial settlement between South Korea and Japan.
Legal framework for illegal migrants
Context: An interest has been ignited in the existing legal framework in India for illegal migrants after Home Minister Amit Shah’s announcement in the Rajya Sabha that a National Register of Citizens (NRC) will be implemented across India, and repeated again in Assam.
Background The first enactment made for dealing with foreigners was the Foreigners Act, 1864, which provided for the expulsion of foreigners and their arrest, detention pending removal, and for a ban on their entry into India after removal. The Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920, empowered the government to make rules requiring persons entering India to be in possession of passports. This rule also granted the government the power to remove from India any person who entered without a passport. The Foreigners Act, 1946 empowers the government to make provisions for regulating the entry of foreigners into India. Its most important provision is that the ‘burden of proof’ lies with the person, and not with the authorities. This has been upheld by a Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court. The Foreigners (Tribunals) Order, 1964 empowers district magistrates in all States and Union Territories to set up tribunals to decide whether a person staying illegally in India is a foreigner or not. The Illegal Migrants (Determination by Tribunals) Act, 1983 was introduced for the detection and deportation of illegal migrants who had entered India on or after March 25, 1971. One factor for its failure was that it did not contain any provision on ‘burden of proof’ similar to the Foreigners Act, 1946. In 2005, in the Supreme Court not only quashed the IMDT Act but also closed all tribunals in Assam functioning under the Act. It, then, transferred all pending cases at the IMDT tribunals to the Foreigners Tribunals constituted under the Foreigners (Tribunals) Order, 1964. About NRC The NRC or National Register of Citizens is the list of Indian citizens and was prepared in 1951, following the census of 1951. The process of NRC update was taken up in Assam as per a Supreme Court order in 2013. In order to wean out cases of illegal migration from Bangladesh and other adjoining areas, NRC updation was carried out under The Citizenship Act, 1955, and according to rules framed in the Assam Accord. For a person’s name to be included in the updated NRC list of 2018, he/ she will have to furnish:
- Existence of name in the legacy data: The legacy data is the collective list of the NRC data of 1951 and the electoral rolls up to midnight of 24 March 1971.
- Proving linkage with the person whose name appears in the legacy data.
Why was it updated?
The process of NRC update was taken up in Assam as per a Supreme Court order in 2013. In order to wean out cases of illegal migration from Bangladesh and other adjoining areas, NRC updation was carried out underThe Citizenship Act, 1955, and according to rules framed in theAssam Accord.
Why is March 24, 1971 the cut-off date?
There have been several waves of migration to Assam from Bangladesh, but the biggest was in March 1971 when the Pakistan army crackdown forced many to flee to India. The Assam Accord of 1985 that ended the six-year anti-foreigners’ agitation decided upon the midnight of March 24, 1971 as the cut-off date.
Who is a citizen in Assam?
The Citizenship Act of 1955 was amended after the Assam Accord for all Indian-origin people who came from Bangladesh before January 1, 1966 to be deemed as citizens. Those who came between January 1, 1966 and March 25, 1971 were eligible for citizenship after registering and living in the State for 10 years while those entering after March 25, 1971, were to be deported.
Global Bio-India (GBI) Summit
Context: India’s first largest biotechnology conference – the Global Bio-India (GBI) Summit, 2019 has recently been concluded in New Delhi. The 3-day event was organized by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India along with Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC).
The Department plans to turn the Global Bio-India (GBI) Summit into an annual event with support from all stakeholders. The Summit provided an opportunity to showcase the potential of India’s biotech sector to the international community, identify, create opportunities and deliberate on the key challenges in the areas of Bio-pharma, Bio-Agri, Bio-Industrial, Bio-Energy and Bio-Services and allied sectors. About Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) is a not-for-profit Section 8, Schedule B, Public Sector Enterprise, set up by Department of Biotechnology (DBT). It has been setup as an Interface Agency to empower the emerging Biotech enterprise to undertake strategic research and innovation. Vision: “To Stimulate, foster and enhance the strategic research and innovation capabilities of the Indian biotech industry, particularly start-ups and SME’s, for creation of affordable products addressing the needs of the largest section of society” Key Strategies
- Foster innovation and entrepreneurship
- Promote affordable innovation in key social sectors
- Empowerment of start-ups & small and medium enterprises
- Contribute through partners for capability enhancement and diffusion of innovation
- Enable commercialization of discovery
- Ensure global competitiveness of Indian enterprises
Dallol Geothermal Field
Context: Researchers have found an aquatic environment on the Earth with complete absence of any form of life.
The study, published in the journal, Nature Ecology and Evolution, revealed that any form of microbial life was absent in the hot, saline, hyperacid ponds of the Dallol geothermal field in Ethiopia. The study helps in understanding the limits of habitability and presents evidence that there are places even on Earth’s surface which are sterile though they contain liquid water. About Dallol Geothermal Field Dallol is a unique, terrestrial hydrothermal system in Ethiopia. Dallol lies in the evaporitic plain of the Danakil depression at the Afar Triangle, in the prolongation of the Erta Ale basaltic volcanic range. It is known for its unearthly colors and mineral patterns, and the very acidic fluids that are discharging from its hydrothermal springs. The intrusion of basaltic magma in the marine sedimentary sequence of Danakil resulted in the formation of a salt dome structure, where the hydrothermal system is hosted. The wider area of Dallol is known as one of the driest and hottest places on the planet. It is also one of the lowest land points, lying 125 m (410 ft) below mean sea level.
Jing Kieng Jri: Living Root Bridges
Context: The living root bridges of in the Khasi and Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya has been recently investigated by the researchers from Germany. They have proposed to integrate them in modern architecture around the world, and potentially help make cities more environment-friendly. About the Jing Kieng Jri The jing kieng jri or living root bridges — aerial bridges built by weaving and manipulating the living roots of the Indian rubber tree — have been serving as connectors for generations in Meghalaya.
These roots spanning between 15 and 250 feet and built over centuries, the bridges, primarily a means to cross streams and rivers, have also become world-famous tourist attractions. A root bridge uses traditional tribal knowledge to train roots of the Indian rubber tree, found in abundance in the area, to grow laterally across a stream bed, resulting in a living bridge of roots. The process begins with placing of young pliable aerial roots growing from Ficus elastica (India rubber) trees in hollowed out Areca catechu or native bamboo trunks. These provide essential nutrition and protection from the weather, and also perform as aerial root guidance systems. Over time, as the aerial roots increase in strength and thickness, the Areca catechu or native bamboo trunks are no longer required.
Household Social Consumption In India: Health NSS 75th Round
Context: The National Statistical Office (NSO) has conducted the survey on Household Social Consumption related to Health during the period July 2017 to June 2018 as a part of 75th round of National Sample Survey (NSS). Prior to this, there have been three such surveys – carried out, in 1995-96 (52nd round of NSS), 2004 (60th round of NSS) and 2014 (71st round of NSS). The main objective of the survey was to gather basic quantitative information on the health sector viz. morbidity, profile of ailments including their treatment, role of government and private facilities in providing healthcare, expenditure on medicines, expenditure on medical consultation and investigation, hospitalisation and expenditure thereon, maternity and childbirth, the condition of the aged, etc. Key findings of the Survey
- Percentage of persons that responded as ailing in a 15-day period: 5% in India as a whole (6.7% for males and 8.3% for females).
- Proportion of persons treated as in-patient any time during a 365-day period: 9% in India as a whole (2.8% for males and 2.9% for females).
- In-patient hospitalization (excluding childbirth) by type of hospital for availing treatment: Public hospitals accounted for 42%, Private hospitals (excl. charitable, NGO-run) accounted for 55% and Charitable/trust/NGO-run hospitals accounted for 2.7%.
- Healthcare service provider for treatment of ailments: Government hospitals in case of 30% ailments; Private hospitals in case of 23% ailments; Private doctors/clinics in case of 43% ailments and Informal health care provider and Charitable/trust/NGO-run hospitals in case of remaining 4.1% of ailments.
- 14% of the rural population and 19% of the urban population reported that they had health expenditure coverage.
- In both rural and urban India, 95% of ailments were treated by allopathy.
- Average medical expenditure per hospitalisation case (excluding childbirth) in rural India is about Rs. 16,676 and Rs. 26,475 in urban India.
- Place of childbirth: In rural areas about 90% childbirths were institutional (in Government/private hospitals) and in urban areas it was about 96%.
- Surgery was done in about 28% of hospital childbirths in India (rural: about 24%; urban: about 41%).
- Immunisation among children aged 0-5 years: About 59% of boys and 60% of girls at all-India level had been fully immunised (i.e., received all 8 prescribed vaccinations).
NSS REPORT NO.584: DRINKING WATER, SANITATION, HYGIENE AND HOUSING CONDITION IN INDIA, NSS 76TH ROUND
Context: The National Statistical Office (NSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has conducted a survey on Drinking Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Housing Condition as a part of 76th round of National Sample Survey (NSS). Prior to this, surveys on the same subject were carried out by NSO during 65th round (July 2008 – June 2009) and 69th round (July – December, 2012). The main objective of the survey was to collect information on facilities of drinking water, sanitation along with housing facilities available to the households and the micro environment surrounding the houses which are important determinants of overall quality of living condition of the people. The important aspects on which the information was collected in the survey are: type of the dwelling unit (viz. independent house, flat etc.), tenurial status of
- The dwelling unit (viz. owned, hired, no dwelling etc.),
- Structure of the dwelling unit (viz. pucca, semi-pucca, katcha),
- Condition of the structure (viz. good, satisfactory, bad),
- Floor area of the dwelling unit,
- Age of the house owned by the household,
- Facilities available to the households in respect of drinking water, bathroom, latrine etc. and
- Micro environment surrounding the house like drainage system of the house, system of disposal of household waste water, system of disposal of household garbage, problems of flies and mosquitoes etc
Important Findings of the Survey
- Drinking water facility: The major source of drinking water was hand pump for the households in the rural areas and piped water into dwelling in the urban areas.
- About 42.9% of the households in the rural areas used hand pump as the principal source of drinking water.
- About 40.9% of the households in the urban areas used piped water into dwelling as the principal source of drinking water.
- Bathroom and sanitation facility: About 50.3% of the households in the rural and about 75.0% in the urban areas had exclusive access to bathroom.
- About 71.3% of the households in the rural and about 96.2% in the urban areas had access to latrine.
- About 50.9% of the households in rural and 48.9% in urban areas used flush/pour-flush to septic tank type of latrine.
- About 48.0% of the households in the rural areas and about 86.1% of the households in the urban areas had bathroom and latrine both within household premises.
- Tenurial status and household characteristics: About 96.0% of the households in the rural and about 63.8% in the urban areas had their own dwelling unit.
- Among the households living in houses, about 76.7% of the households in the rural and about 96.0% in the urban areas had the house of pucca structure.
- Micro environment: Among the households living in houses, about 93.9% of the households in the rural and about 99.1% in the urban areas had electricity for domestic use.
- Among the households living in houses, about 48.3% of the households in the rural and about 86.6% in the urban areas used LPG as fuel for cooking.
- Among the households living in houses, about 80.4% of the households in the rural areas had no arrangement for collection of household garbage.
- In the urban areas, municipality made arrangement for collection of household garbage for about 74.1% of the households.
- Electricity for domestic use: Among the households living in houses, about 93.9% of the households in the rural and about 99.1% in the urban areas had electricity for domestic use.
NSS REPORT NO. 583: PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES IN INDIA NSS 76TH ROUND
Context: The National Statistical Office (NSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has conducted a Survey of Persons with Disabilities during July 2018 to December 2018 as a part of 76th round of National Sample Survey (NSS). Prior to this, survey on the same subject was carried out by NSO during the 58th round (July-December 2002). The main objective of the Survey of Persons with Disabilities conducted by NSO in its 76th round was to estimate indicators of incidence and prevalence of disability, cause of disability, age at onset of disability, facilities available to the persons with disability, difficulties faced by persons with disability in accessing/using public building/public transport, arrangement of regular care giver, out-of pocket expenses relating to disability, etc. In NSS 76th round survey, for classification of disabilities, all the specified disabilities as stated in The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 have been considered. Key findings of the Survey Prevalence and incidence of disability: In India prevalence of disability (percentage of persons with disability in the population) was 2.2%with2.3% in ruraland 2.0% in urban areas. Prevalence of disability was higher among males than females. Incidence of disability in the population, that is the number of persons with onset of disability (by birth or otherwise) during 365 days preceding the date of survey was 86 per 1,00,000 persons. Level of education among persons with disabilities: Among persons with disabilities of age 7 years and above, 52.2% were literate. Among persons with disabilities of age 15 years and above, 19.3% had highest educational level as secondary and above. Among persons with disabilities of age 3 to 35 years, 10.1% attended pre-school intervention programme. Percentage of persons with disabilities of age 3 to 35 years, who were ever enrolled in ordinary school, was 62.9%. Living arrangement, care giver, receipt of aid/help, certificate of disability: Percentage of persons with disabilities who were living alone was 3.7 %. Among persons with disabilities,62.1 % had care giver. Percentage of persons with disabilities who received aid/help from Government was21.8%andanother 1.8%received aid/help from organisations other than Government. Labour Force Participation Rate, Worker Population Ratio and Unemployment Rate in usual status among persons with disabilities: Among persons with disabilities of age 15 years and above, Labour Force Participation Rate in usual status was 23.8%, Worker Population Ratioin usual status was22.8% and Unemployment Ratein usual status was 4.2%.
NSS 75th Round Survey on Household Social Consumption: Education
Context: National Statistical Office (NSO) has conducted a survey on Household Social Consumption: Education as part of 75th round of National Sample Survey (NSS). Prior to this, surveys on the same subject were carried out during 64th round (July 2007- June 2008) and 71st round (January – June 2014). The main objective of NSS 75th round survey on Household Social Consumption: Education was to build indicators on participation of the persons of age 3 to 35 years in the education system, expenditure incurred on education of the household members and various indicators of those currently not attending education (i.e., for the persons who never enrolled or ever enrolled but currently not attending education). For persons of age 5 years and above, information was also collected on ability to operate computer, ability to use internet and use of internet during last 30 days. Key Findings of the Survey
- Literacy rate among persons of age 7 years and above was 77.7%. It was 73.5% in rural and 87.7% in the urban areas.
- Nearly 10.6 % of the persons of age 15 years and above in India had completed level of education graduate and above. This was 5.7% in rural and 21.7% in urban areas.
- Among persons of age 3 to 35 years, 13.6% never enrolled, 5% ever enrolled but currently not attending while 43.9% were currently attending.
- Net Attendance Ratio (NAR) at primary level was 86.1%. The figure was 72.2% at ‘upper primary / middle level’ and 89.0% at ‘primary and upper primary /middle level’
- Nearly 96.1% of the students were pursuing general courses and 3.9% were pursuing technical/professional courses.
- Among students pursuing general courses, nearly 55.8% were male students and 44.2% were female students.
- Among students pursuing technical/professional courses, nearly 65.2% were male students and 34.8% were female students.
- Nearly 57.0% of the students in rural and 23.4% in urban areas received free education.
- Nearly 15.7% of the students in rural and 9.1% in urban areas received scholarship/ stipend/ reimbursement.
- Nearly 4.4% of the rural households and 23.4% of the urban households had computer.
- Nearly 14.9% of the rural households and 42.0% of the urban households had internet facility.