IASbaba’s Daily Current Affairs (Prelims + Mains
Focus)- 22nd November 2018
(PRELIMS + MAINS FOCUS)
Jammu and Kashmir Governor dissolved the State Assembly
Part of: GS Prelims and Mains II – Indian Polity; Centre State Relations
- Jammu and Kashmir Governor passed an order in exercise of the powers conferred upon him by Section 53 of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir to dissolve the Legislative Assembly.
Powers invoked by the Governor on the basis of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir
- Section 92 has provisions in case of failure of constitutional machinery in the State
- Section 53(2)(b) provides for the dissolution of the Assembly
Powers of Governor of other States (i.e., except Jammu and Kashmir)
- Governor can dissolve the legislative assembly if the chief minister advices him to do following a vote of no confidence. Now, it is up to the Governor what he/she would like to do.
- Governor, on his/her discretion can recommend the president about the failure of the constitutional machinery in the state.
- If there is NO political party with a clear cut majority in the assembly, Governor on his/her discretion can appoint anybody as chief minister.
Wildlife and Bird Sanctuary in news: Point Calimere
Part of: GS Prelims and Mains III – Protected areas; Conservation of biodiversity
- After Cyclone Gaja struck, the wildlife sanctuary looks like a deserted war zone, hundreds of birds have died, trees have been uprooted or their branches broken or defoliated.
- The Point Calimere sanctuary, covering 1728.81 hectares, is home to 564 flowering plants, 198 medicinal plants, 14 types of mammals, 18 reptiles and nine amphibians.
About Pt Calimere
- It is a protected area in Tamil Nadu.
- The flagship species of the sanctuary is the near threatened blackbuck antelope, one of the four antelope species in India (Chinkara, Chausingha and Nilgai being the other three) and the most numerous large animal in the sanctuary.
- This site has recorded the second largest congregation of migratory waterbirds in India, with a peak population in excess of 100,000, representing 103 species.
- Great flamingo, Painted Stork, Little Stint, Seagull and Brown-headed gull are normally found in the sanctuary.
U.S. citizen killed by Andaman tribals
U.S. citizen was killed by Andaman tribals when he tried to enter the North Sentinel Island (one of the Andaman Islands).
Do you know?
- Access to North Sentinel Island and its buffer zone is strictly restricted under the Protection of Aboriginal Tribe (Regulation), 1956 and Regulations under Indian Forest Act, 1927.
- Photographing or filming the tribe members is also an offence. The rules were amended later to enhance penalties. But restricted area permits were relaxed for some islands recently.
Who are these Sentinelese?
- The Sentinelese, a negrito tribe who live on the North Sentinel Island of the Andamans, have not faced incursions and remain hostile to outsiders.
- The inhabitants are connected to the Jarawa on the basis of physical, as well as linguistic similarities, researchers say.
- Based on carbon dating of kitchen middens by the Anthropological Survey of India, Sentinelese presence was confirmed in the islands to 2,000 years ago. Genome studies indicate that the Andaman tribes could have been on the islands even 30,000 years ago.
- The Sentinelese have been fiercely hostile to outside contact. But in 1991 they accepted some coconuts from a team of Indian anthropologists and administrators.
- Some researchers argue that the Sentinelese have been mostly left alone even from colonial times, unlike other tribes such as the Onges, Jarawas and Great Andamanese, because the land they occupy has little commercial attraction.
How many are there?
- From 1901 to 1921 they were estimated to be 117 people. In 1931, the number dropped to 50, a figure used for the 1961 Census too. In 1991 their head count was put at 23.
- Census 2001 counted 39 inhabitants.
Virtual climate summit
Part of: GS Prelims and Mains III – Environment and Ecology; Climate Change; Global warming
- World leaders to participate in an innovative climate change summit that will take place entirely online so it is carbon neutral.
- The Virtual Climate Summit is the brainchild of Marshall Islands President Hilda Heine, whose low-lying Pacific island nation will drown beneath rising seas if global warming continues unabated.
- It will be the first global political meeting to be held online.
- The virtual summit’s main aim is to encourage the international community to keep global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
- The latest round of UN climate talks, COP24, will open in the southern Polish city of Katowice on December 2 with the aim of reinvigorating the Paris agreement.
Animal in news: Ortolan Bunting
Part of: GS Prelims and Mains III – Environment and Ecology;In news:
- ‘First photo’ of Ortolan Bunting in India is out; the bird was photographed near Mangaluru.
- ‘Ortolan Bunting’ – breeds from Mongolia to Europe and migrates to Africa via the Middle East.
- IUCN status: “Least Concern” category
- e-registration must for jobs in 18 countries – Passport holders with “non-Emigration Check Required (non-ECR)” status will soon have to get themselves registered with the Ministry of External Affairs before taking up jobs abroad.
- Person in news: Kim Jong-yang of South Korea has been chosen as Interpol chief
- Rabab: is a lute-like musical instrument originating from central Afghanistan. The rubab is mainly used by Pashtun, Tajik, Turkish, Kashmiri, Baluch, Azerbaijani, and Iranian Kurdish classical musicians. Rubab is one of the national musical instruments of Afghanistan. It is considered to be one of the Kashmir’s folk music.
- The word ‘rabab’ comes from rooh (soul) and bab (expression). It should stir the soul.
TOPIC:General studies 2, 3 and 4
- Constitution, Issues related to Governance, judiciary
- Indian economy: Industrialization
- Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions;
- Strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance;
- Case Studies on above issues
Amid institutional decline
There has been observed a decline in the working of various government institutions over time. This decline is partly fuelled by the wrong policies undertaken by the government and partly because of the impact of such decision making.
Examples of institutions in decline
- The involvement of the government in the decision making process of the investigative agencies such as CBI has undermined their independence and autonomy.
- Further, there are growing differences between RBI and the government on numberof fundamental issues.
- In this regard, the RBI’s deputy Governor has warned that there could be serious consequences if there is erosion in the autonomy of the RBI.
- The Election Commission was under a cloud over the announcement of election dates, action taken against some Delhi legislators and the functioning of electronic voting machines.
- The ongoing #MeToo movement has exposed the sordid goings-on in large swathes of the media and the entertainment industry.
- Then there is the attempt to introduce Civil Service Rules in Central universities, an attempt to erode the autonomy of academics.
- The crisis in the banking system and the huge non-performing assets that overrun their balance sheets impact the viability of the financial system.
- The functioning of the judiciary itself has been a cause for concern.
- The list of institutions in decline is long. The decline of institutions in India is not recent.
The present and past: two case studies
- In 2016, demonetization brought out the centralisation of power and a lack of consultation with important sections of the government. The RBI and the banks were marginalised.
- The chaos prevailed for months and about 99% of the money came back into the system, thus defeating the very purpose of carrying out this draconian measure.
- Those with black money escaped and those who had never seen black money were put to great hardship.
- Mess in CBI
- Political interference in the agency and corruption among its ranks have been talked about but are hard to prove.
- The Supreme Court, in 2013, even called the agency a ‘caged parrot’ but this was not concrete enough.
- The political Opposition when feeling the heat of various investigations has always accused the agency of being its ‘master’s voice’.
- The intervention by the Supreme Court in the CBI issue places a question mark on the independence of the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) and the functioning of the government as a whole in making key appointments in the CBI.
- Further, the credibility of institutions has come under doubts due to lack of transparency in the appointment process and lack of proper investigation of politically sensitive cases.
- The ‘committed bureaucracy’ is an idea floated during the Emergency. The issue is: Committed to whom? To the national interest or to the rulers?
- Another dilemma is, can a dishonest system be managed honestly?
Impacts of institutional decline
- The rule of law is being subverted and illegality being committed on a large scale.
- Growth of the black economy is a measure of illegality. It has gone up from 4-5% of GDP in 1955-56 to the present level of 62%.
- It has become ‘systematic and systemic’ and eroded institutional functioning all across the board. This has damaged institutions.
- The fight against widespread graft in the country has been set back.
Do you know?
A.V. Dicey’s Rule of Law
- Supremacy of the law (Absence of arbitrary power)
- Equality before the law
- Individual Liberties
The Supreme Court in Bachan Singh Vs. State of Punjab emphasizes that Rule of law excludes arbitrariness and unreasonableness.
- Institutions provide the framework for individuals and systems to function. Their breakdown leads to a breakdown of societal functioning — democracy is weakened, the sense of justice is eroded and the Opposition is sought to be suppressed.
- If institutions are strong, they are respected and it becomes difficult to manipulate them. It enables the honest to survive.
- In strong institutions, individual corruption is an aberration but when they weaken, it becomes generalised.
- It leads to individualisation, illegality becomes acceptable and the collective interest suffers.
- Thus, there is need for adherence to the rule of law and need to restore the institutional integrity and its independent functioning.
- There is need for committed bureaucracy which should work in favour of national interest.
Connecting the dots:
- It is difficult to manage a dishonest system honestly. Critically comment.
TOPIC:General studies 2
- Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests
- Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests
When giants clash: on the US-China discord
The APEC Summit was recently concluded without any form a joint statement from the member countries due to conflict of opinion between US led countries and China led camp of countries.
Do you know?
- About APEC: The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is a regional economic forum established in 1989 to leverage the growing interdependence of the Asia-Pacific.
- Purpose: It aims to create greater prosperity for the people of the region by promoting balanced, inclusive, sustainable, innovative and secure growth and by accelerating regional economic integration.
- APEC Functioning: APEC ensures that goods, services, investment and people move easilyacross borders. Members facilitate this trade through faster customs procedures at borders; more favorable business climates behind the border; and aligning regulations and standards across the region.APEC’s initiative to synchronize regulatory systems is a key step to integrating the Asia- Pacific economy.
US-China rivalry in APEC:
- The on-going global trade war between China & US has split the APEC member countries between American and Chinese camps.
- US has accused China of using unfair trade practices and has been pressuring China to improve access to its markets, grant IPR to American companies, cut back on industrial subsides and reduce the American trade deficit with China.
- China intends for greater role of BRI among APEC member countries which is not supported by US and has opposed the protectionist measures undertaken by US and its imposition of tariffs on Chinese imports.
Impacts of US-China rivalry
- If this continues, eventually global supply chains may be hit, and shrinking trade volumes may cause companies to seek out new trading routes and partners.
- Institutionally, multilateral rule-making bodies such as the WTO may lose their authority, and an interlocking system of bilateral trade treaties and punitive sanctions networks may substitute the consensus-based approach that was forged so painstakingly after World War II.
- Asia will be at the heart of this war of attrition because strategic control of its high-value maritime trading routes is the key to China’s dreams of global trade dominance.
After the APEC summit the world is still poised on the edge of the trade war vortex. The forthcoming G20 meeting in Argentina offers an opportunity to pull back from the brink.
Connecting the dots:
- Analyse the impacts of US-China trade war on global rule and consensus based trade approach.
(TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE)
Model questions: (You can now post your answers in comment section)
- Featured Comments and comments Up-voted by IASbaba are the “correct answers”.
- IASbaba App users – Team IASbaba will provide correct answers in comment section. Kindly refer to it and update your answers.
Q.1) Consider the following statements about Polavaram Project
- It implements Godavari-Krishna link under National River Linking Project
- It has been accorded national project status by the central government
- The dam is across the Krishna River
Which of the following statements are correct?
- 1 and 2
- 2 and 3
- 1 and 3
- All of the above
Q.2) Consider the following about Rubab:
- It is a flute-like musical instrument originating from central Afghanistan.
- It is a traditional dance form of eastern Indian states of Jharkhand, West Bengal and Odisha.
- It is a bowed, short-necked string instrument from India as well as Nepal which is used in Hindustani classical music.
Which of the following statements is/are correct?
- 1 and 2
- 2 and 3
- 1 and 3
- None of the above
Q.3) Consider the below statements about the dissolution of Lok Sabha:
- When Lok sabha is dissolved, all business including bills, motions, resolutions, notices, petitions and so on pending before it or its committees lapse.
- A bill passed by the Lok Sabha but pending in the Rajya Sabha does not lapses.
- A bill pending in the Rajya Sabha but not passed by the Lok Sabha does not lapse.
Which of the above statements are correct?
- 1 and 2
- 1 and 3
- 2 and 3
- All of the above
Q.4) Which of the following tribes is not found in Andaman and Nicobar Islands?
War without end? On the attack on Kabul
The post and the person: on strengthening the ECOLOGY
Getting justice for Asia Bibi
No check, little balance
Partnership With A Difference
Violence, theirs and ours
New labour for new India