IASbaba PIB Weekly : Press Information Bureau – 24th June to 30th June, 2018

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  • July 5, 2018
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IASbaba Press Information Bureau 24th to 30th June, 2018



2019: 100 years of the horrific incident of Jallianwala Bagh will come to a full circle

(Topic: The Freedom Struggle – its various stages)

Date: April 13, 1919

Also known as the Amritsar massacre

  • Dyer was convinced of a major insurrection and he banned all meetings; however this notice was not widely disseminated. That was the day of Baisakhi, the main Sikh festival, and many villagers had gathered in the Bagh.
  • On hearing that a meeting had assembled at Jallianwala Bagh, Dyer ordered the army to shoot at the crowd. Dyer continued the firing for about ten minutes, until the ammunition supply was almost exhausted.
  • The civilians had assembled to condemn the arrest and deportation of two national leaders, Satya Pal and Saifuddin Kitchlew (most remembered for the protests in Punjab after the implementation of *Rowlatt Act in March 1919)
  • The ineffective inquiry and the initial accolades for Dyer by the House of Lords fuelled widespread anger, leading to the *Non-cooperation Movement of 1920–22.

*Rowlatt Act: This act effectively authorized the government to imprison any person suspected of terrorism living in the Raj for up to two years without a trial, and gave the imperial authorities power to deal with all revolutionary activities.

*Non-cooperation Movement of 1920–22: Led by Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi after the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre

  • Reaction to the oppressive policies of the British Indian government such as the Rowlatt Act and the Jallianwala Bagh massacre
  • Aimed to resist British rule in India through nonviolence means,”Ahimsa”
  • Protesters would refuse to buy British goods, adopt the use of local handicrafts and picket liquor shops.

Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee

(Topic: The Freedom Struggle – its important contributors)

  • Birthday: July 6
  • Associated with education, administration and parliamentary affairs
  • Youngest vice-chancellor of the University of Calcutta (33 yrs)
  • In 1937, on the invitation of Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore addressed the convocation in Kolkata University in Bangla. This was the first time under British rule that the convocation in Kolkata University had been addressed to in Bangla
  • The first industrial policy of Independent India, which came in 1948, was stamped with his ideas and vision.
  • For the proper development of cottage and small industries with finance availability and organizational setup- All India Handicrafts Board, All India Handloom Board and Khadi & Village Industries Board were established between 1948 and 1950.
  • There was also a special emphasis by Dr. Mukherjee on indigenization of India’s defence production, in the establishment of four most successful mega projects- Chittaranjan locomotive works factory, Hindustan aircraft factory, Sindri fertilizer factory and Damodar Valley Corporation and other river valley projects


NITI Aayog partners with GNFC Ltd

(Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation)

Why: To implement Fertilizer Subsidy Disbursement through Blockchain Technology

  • They will jointly develop the use case, under take research, interact with multiple stakeholders, develop Blockchain solutions, exchange learnings, organise forums, and disseminate learnings across their networks.
  • Learnings, insights and outcomes of the PoC will enable NITI Aayog to suggest policy recommendations and actions in strengthening the subsidy mechanism, making it more transparent and immune to leakages.

Why Blockchain

  • Distribution will become effective and efficient
  • Subsidy transfer could be automated and made real time
  • Blockchain platform have inherent characteristics of distributed computing and ledger keeping of transactions i.e. confidentiality, authenticity, non-repudiation, data integrity, and data availability.
  • Overall implementation ensures that there is no dependence on intermediary agencies to prove the validity of transactions and resulting subsidy claims.
  • The blockchain based process will also use Smart Contracts which will enable quick and accurate reconciliation of transactions between multiple parties with minimal human intervention.
  • Implementation platform is such that process transparency is evident, transactions cannot be altered and audit trails of transactions are available.

Cabinet approves

MoU between India and Singapore on Cooperation in the field of urban planning and development:

  • To facilitate government agencies in the Centre and States, including Municipal Bodies, to readily tap into the expertise of Singapore agencies in the areas of urban development and management and other areas, and thus help in urban rejuvenation, mission
  • Capacity building programme in the field of planning, focusing on areas of urban planning, water and waste water management, solid waste management, Intelligent Transport System and public financing (Public Private Partnerships) would be undertaken
  • It would equip the officials with skills related to evidence based policy writing, evaluation etc. and help NITI to play the newly assigned role of a Think Tank in a more effective manner.

MoU between India and Germany on Cooperation in the field of Civil Aviation: Signifies an important landmark in the civil aviation relations between India and Germany, and has the potential to spur greater trade, investment, tourism, and cultural exchanges between the two countries.

Strengthening of teaching, patient / clinical care and public health programme implementation – Shifting of more experienced doctors belonging to Central Government and Central government entities to teaching/ clinical / Public Health Programme implementation activities

  • The approval seeks to ensure that the doctors belonging to Central Health Service (CHS) and of other Ministries / Departments / entities of the Central Government, after attaining the age of 62 years, work exclusively in their respective fields of clinical expertise.
  • This will result in capacity building and leadership development of more Central Government doctors besides availability of more experienced doctors for medical education, clinical / patient care services and for implementation of national health programmes.

MoU between India and Bahrain on cooperation in the field of Healthcare: The MoU covers the following areas of cooperation:-

  • Exchange of information including publications and research outcomes;
  • Exchanging visits by governmental officials, academic staff, scholars, teachers, experts and students;
  • Participating in workshops and training courses;
  • Encouraging health and medical research activities at both the private-sector and the academic level

Please Note:

1st of July: Doctor’s Day

1st July 2018: To be celebrated as ‘GST day’, to commemorate the first year of the unprecedented reform of Indian taxation

  • GST – ‘ONE NATION, ONE TAX, ONE MARKET’- binds India into an Economic Union, promotes ‘Make in India’ and has improved ‘Ease of Doing Business’
  • Introduction of e-way bill ensures hassle free movement of goods throughout the country
  • GST replaced multi-layered, complex indirect tax structure with a simple, transparent and technology–driven tax regime

Mission Shaurya: Initiative of the Adivasi Vikas Vibhag of the Maharashtra State Government – Five students out of 10 of this group successfully scaled Mt. Everest in May 2018

ICDS-CAS (Common Application Software) has been specially designed to strengthen the Service Delivery System as well as the mechanism for Real Time Monitoring (RTM) for nutritional outcomes

PRAGATI – the ICT-based, multi-modal platform for Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation

Islands Development Agency:

  • Constituted in 2017
  • 26 islands have been listed for holistic development
  • Elements of holistic development: Establishment of key infrastructure projects, digital connectivity, green energy, desalination plants, waste management, promotion of fisheries, and tourism-based projects
  • Review of the work done in Andaman and Nicobar Islands: Need for developing an integrated tourism-centric ecosystem
  • Need to explore the possibility of seaweed cultivation, and other initiatives which could be of help for the agriculture sector

India is the largest borrower from Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank: With the total project portfolios of US$4.4 Billion, India has been the largest borrower of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) lending since the time the Bank started its operations.

  • AIIB is the first major multilateral development bank where principal contributors are the borrowing members themselves.
  • An international financial institution that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region – established in January 2016 with its headquarters located in Beijing
  • Its stated mission is “to improve economic and social development in Asia by investing in high quality, financially viable and environmentally friendly infrastructure projects”.
  • The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has been projected as an “Asian tool” to deal with such challenges that have stunted the growth prospects of several Asian economies.

Use of satellite-based Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) data:

  • For estimating ground-based PM2.5 levels
  • Establishing early warning system and dissemination protocol to inform public and enforcing agencies about episodic high pollution events in advance

National Physical Laboratory (CSIR-NPL): Certification agency for air quality measurement instruments.

Prime Minister Awas Yojana (PMAY) Scheme: To hand-over 1 crore homes by December 2018


  • As part of Smart City Initiative, safe transportation, lower environment impact, waste to energy and waste to compost, universal access for women, children and old people is where intervention is required beyond building homes.
  • Use of innovative and fast-track construction technology has been adopted in a big way under the scheme. More than 7 lakh houses are being constructed in different States using new technologies.
  • The progress of the houses on the ground has been monitored through geo-tagging using space technology.  
  • The Ministry has further rolled out eight models of Public-Private Partnerships for Affordable Housing that has ushered in a revolution in Affordable Housing sector in India.
  • The investment in the housing sector has a spiral and cascading effect on other sectors of the economy as well, thereby boosting the GDP of the country. The increased activity in the housing sector, increases the demand of not only construction material such as bricks, cement, sand and steel but also the allied sectors.

The Government of India is committed to provide “Housing for All” by the end of the Mission period-2022.

3000 Van Dhan Kendras to be set up: The Government proposes to set up 3000 Van Dhan Kendras involving 30,000 SHGs across the country

  • By the Ministry of Tribal Affairs
  • An initiative for targeting livelihood generation for tribals by harnessing non-timber forest produces, the true wealth of forest i.e. Van Dhan with an estimated value: Rs.2 Lakh Cr. per year.
  • It shall promote and leverage the collective strength of tribals (through SHGs) to achieve scale.
  • It also aims at build upon the traditional knowledge & skill sets of tribals by adding technology & IT for value addition.
  • Further it is to set-up tribal community owned Van Dhan Vikas Kendras (the Kendra) in predominantly forested tribal districts. A Kendra shall constitute of 10 tribal SHGs, each comprising of upto 30 tribal NTFP gatherers or artisans i.e. about 300 beneficiaries per Kendra.
  • Training and technical support is provided by TRIFED

‘Women in Prisons’ Report

By: The Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD)

Aim: To build an understanding of the various entitlements of women in prisons, the various issues faced by them and possible methods for resolution of the same

The report contains a comprehensive list of 134 recommendations for improving the lives of women under incarceration, addressing a wide range of issues pertaining to pregnancy and childbirth in prison, mental health, legal aid, reintegration in society and their caregiving responsibilities among others.

The excerpts of the report:

  • Prior to their imprisonment, women with care-giving responsibilities must be allowed to make arrangements for their children, and a reasonable suspension of detention may also be provided for this purpose.
  • Bail should be granted to those under-trial women who have spent one-third of their maximum possible sentence in detention, by making necessary changes in Section 436A of the CrPC which provides for release after half of the maximum sentence has been served.
  • A separate accommodation for mothers in post-natal stage to maintain hygiene and protect the infant from contagion, for at least a year after childbirth
  • Special provisions relating to health and nutrition be made for women who have recently given birth outside prison, or who have undergone abortion or miscarriage
  • Legal consultations must be conducted in confidentiality and without censorship
  • Comprehensive after-care programme to be put in place, covering employment, financial support, regaining of child custody, shelter, counselling, continuity of health care services etc. Counselling should also be provided to family members and employers to adequately receive the woman after release.
  • At least one voluntary organisation should be designated in each district to help with integration of released prisoners.
  • Need for a more robust grievance redressal system
  • Inmates should have access to female counsellors/psychologists at least on a weekly basis or as frequently as needed by them.

Ban on Oxytocin formulations: The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has restricted the manufacture of Oxytocin formulations for domestic use to public sector only. It has also banned the import of Oxytocin and its formulations.

  • Oxytocin is a naturally-occurring hormone that causes uterine contractions during labour and helps new mothers lactate.
  • But its misuse is widespread in the dairy industry where livestock are injected with oxytocin to make them release milk at a time convenient to farmers. The hormone is also used to increase the size of vegetables such as pumpkins, watermelons, brinjals, gourds and cucumbers.

Personality in News

Sant Kabirdas

Maghar: In eastern Uttar Pradesh – Sant Kabir Das ji attained Samadhi here

  • Do you know why Kabir Das ji chose to go to Maghar – In those days it was believed that death in Maghar was a roadblock in one’s pathway to heaven.  On the contrary, breathing one’s last in Kaashi was a guarantee for entry into heaven. Maghar was considered unholy but Sant Kabirdas never subscribed to that view. He toiled relentlessly to quell many such superstitions and evil social customs of his times. That is why he went to Maghar and chose to attain Samadhi there.
  • Sant Kabir Das ji, through his verses ‘Saakhis’ and ‘Dohas’ stressed upon the virtues of social equality, peace and brotherhood, and laid great emphasis on social cohesion. He appealed to the people to rise above divisions of religion & caste and make knowledge & wisdom the sole basis of recognition.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji (Jagatguru)

  • Guru Nanak Dev’s teachings endeavoured to eradicate caste based discrimination prevalent in society. He perceived humankind as one & urged everyone to embrace humanity.
  • The establishment of a kitchen free of social discrimination where a person of any caste, sect, religion or community could eat or what we know as the langarsystem was initiated solely by Guru Nanak Dev Ji.
  • The 550th Prakash Parv of Guru Nanak Dev Ji will be celebrated in 2019.


The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu

On Cooperatives

  • Cooperatives need to take up the task of training farmers in the right use of fertilizers, and also help them understand new technologies in farming. Agricultural cooperatives can play a vital role in educating the farmers to reduce the cost of cultivation through balanced use of fertilizer, improve water-use efficiency, establish more warehouse to avoid distress sale of produce, link with National E-market (e-NAM), emphasize value addition and encourage farmers to take up other allied activities like poultry, beekeeping, and fisheries.
  • Government should strengthen cooperatives so that they can work for the welfare of the farmers and give them credit at the time they need at a reasonable rate of interest
  • Cooperative sector has a big role in bridging the urban-rural divide and creating opportunities for income generation. Women’s participation will further strengthen economic activity in rural areas
  • Cooperatives have tremendous opportunities in solving the problem of unemployment, so, skilling the rural population through cooperatives can be a big leap forward.
  • Highlighting the need to have a transparent, accountable and efficient system, cooperatives need to make effective use of digital technology in their functioning, especially in governance, banking and businesses.

On Human Rights, Values and Cultural Ethos

  • Eternal vigilance is required to safeguard human rights and restore human dignity to each and every person.
  • Citizens must be the guardians of liberty of fellow citizens. It is the duty of every citizen.  Civil liberties are well protected when each of us respects others’ rights.
  • Philosophy of education is to provide for the total development of citizens, including the development of the physical, intellectual, emotional, material and spiritual aspects of their personality.

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