Daily Current Affairs IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 23rd February 2019

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  • February 26, 2019
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IAS UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 23rd February 2019



Financial Action Task Force (FATF) keeps Pak. on grey list, seeks action

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains II and III – International relations; India and its neighbours; Security issues

In news:

  • Financial Action Task Force (FATF) – global terror monitor – issued a stern statement to Pakistan to comply with an action plan on terror financing or face further action.
  • The 37-member group decided not to remove Pakistan from the ‘grey list’, but also did not accept an Indian demand to move Pakistan to the ‘black list’ yet.
  • The ‘grey-listing’ continued despite Pakistan government’s last-minute decision to ban Jamaat-ud Dawa (JuD) and the Falah-e Insaniat Foundation (FIF).
  • The FATF criticised Pakistan for not demonstrating “a proper understanding” of the terror financing risks posed by “Da’esh (Islamic State), al Qaeda, Jamaat-ud Dawa, Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, Haqqani Network, and persons affiliated with the Taliban.”


Important Value Additions:

About Financial Action Task Force (FATF)

  • It is an intergovernmental organization founded in 1989 on the initiative of the G7 to develop policies to combat money laundering.
  • In 2001 its mandate expanded to include terrorism financing.
  • It monitors progress in implementing the FATF Recommendations through peer reviews and mutual evaluations of member countries.
  • The FATF Secretariat is housed at the OECD headquarters in Paris.

Centre lists projects to stop flow of India’s share of water to Pakistan

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains II – International relations; India and its neighbours

In news:

  • Water Resources Ministry issued details of various projects for stopping the flow of water to Pakistan.
  • About 2 Million Acre Feet (MAF) of water annually from the Ravi is reported to be still flowing unutilised to Pakistan below Madhopur.
  • Among India’s various projects, Shahpurkandi project will help in utilizing the water from the Thein dam to irrigate 37,000 hectares of land in Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab, and generate 206 MW of power.
  • Another facility is the Ujh multipurpose project that will create a storage of about 781 million cubic meter of water on river Ujh, a tributary of Ravi.
  • The third project is the second Ravi-Beas link below Ujh.

To read about Indus Water Treaty, visit the link  – https://iasbaba.com/2016/10/the-big-picture-indus-water-treaty-can-it-become-the-handle/

Olympic dream under threat

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains II – International relations; International organizations

In news:

  • India’s future as a host for sporting events remain uncertain following a decision by the International Olympic Committee(IOC), after India refused visa requests from two Pakistani shooters who are expected to participate in the ongoing ISSF World Cup.
  • IOC made it clear to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) that all future international sporting events in India would be put on hold unless the host gave a written guarantee that there would be no discrimination on participation of athletes.
  • According to IOC, India’s stand was against the Fundamental Principles of the Olympic Charter, in particular the principles of non-discrimination.


Important Value Additions:

About International Olympic Committee (IOC)

  • It is a non-governmental sports organisation based in Lausanne, Switzerland.
  • Created by Pierre de Coubertin and Demetrios Vikelas in 1894
  • It is the authority responsible for organising the modern Summer and Winter Olympic Games.
  • It is the governing body of the National Olympic Committees (NOCs), which are the national constituents of the worldwide Olympic Movement.
  • It ensures the regular celebration of the Olympic Games, supports all affiliated member organisations of the Olympic Movement and strongly encourages, by appropriate means, the promotion of the Olympic values.

About Indian Olympic Association (IOA)

  • It is the body responsible for selecting athletes to represent India at the Olympic Games, Asian Games and other international athletic meets and for managing the Indian teams at these events.
  • It also acts as the Indian Commonwealth Games Association, responsible for selecting athletes to represent India at the Commonwealth Games.

Assam Rifles notification on hold

Part of: GS Mains III – Challenges to Internal Security; Linkages between development and spread of extremism

In news:

  • In previous day’s article we read that Assam Rifles has been empowered by the Centre to arrest anyone and search a place without warrant in the border districts of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland and Mizoram. (Assam Rifles granted power to arrest anyone in the Northeast)
  • However, the Home Ministry has kept “in abeyance” its order that empowered the Assam Rifles.
  • The notification was withheld after Opposition parties moved an adjournment motion against the order in the Assam Assembly.


Part of: GS Prelims and Mains III – Science and Technology; Green Fuel

In news:

  • We had earlier read about oil from jatropha seeds (Biofuel) was blended with aviation turbine fuel.
  • Oil from jatropha seeds propelled the country’s first ever bio jet fuel-powered flight.
  • International standards permit a blend rate of up to 50% biofuel with ATF.
  • Now recently, Dehradun-based Indian Institute of Petroleum has successfully finished a pilot test to convert used cooking oil into bio-aviation turbine fuel (Bio-ATF), which can be blended with conventional ATF and used as aircraft fuel.

Do you know?

  • The test assumes importance as the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has launched the Repurpose Cooking Oil (RUCO) initiative to collect and convert used cooking oil into bio-fuel.
  • The food safety body says that by 2020, it should be possible to recover about 220 crore litres of used cooking oil for conversion into bio-fuel.
  • Reducing the re-use of cooking oil in the food industry will have positive public health outcomes and its conversion into Bio-ATF will help the aviation sector reduce its carbon footprint.
  • The CSIR-Indian Institute of Petroleum is looking for partners to commercialise the technology.

Labour Bureau files MUDRA job report

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains III – Indian Economy; Economic Development

In news:

  • The Labour Bureau has completed its survey on employment generated by the MUDRA loan scheme.
  • The survey is expected to help the Centre as it provides a potential data tool to combat other reports showing a dismal scenario on jobs.
  • The Labour Bureau’s completed report on MUDRA loans has now been submitted to the Centre at a time when it is taking flak for not releasing the results of the National Sample Survey Organization’s periodic labour force survey.


About Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana

  • It was introduced in April 2015 and provides affordable credit to micro and small enterprises.
  • Loans up to ₹10 lakh are extended to non-corporate, non-farm enterprises by the Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency (MUDRA) through last-mile financial institutions.

India-Russia: To ink multi-billion agreement for AK-103 assault rifles

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains II and III – International relations; Defence ties; Security

In news:

  • India and Russia are close to concluding an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) for a multi-billion deal to locally bulk manufacture AK-103 assault rifles in the next few months.
  • India has signed several multi-billion dollar defence deals with Russia in the last couple of years and more are in the pipeline.

Do you know?

  • We had read about the Army recently signing a contract for 72,400 assault rifles from Sig Sauer of the U.S. These rifles are for frontline troops deployed in forward areas.
  • Army is looking to replace the indigenous INSAS (Indian National Small Arms System) rifles in use with a modern rifle.

China uses DNA to track its people, with U.S. help

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains III – Science and Technology

In news:

Chinese authorities have been tracking millions of its people using a DNA database with the help of American expertise.

Chinese government is preparing a DNA database that could be used to chase down Muslim Uighur minority who resist Beijing’s plans.

Do you know?

  • Xinjiang is home to most of China’s Uighur ethnic minority and has been under heavy police surveillance in recent years after violent inter-ethnic tensions.
  • Nearly one million Uighurs and other Turkic language-speaking minorities in China have reportedly been held in re-education camps.

Animal in News: ‘Flying bulldog’ – world’s largest bee spotted again

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains III – Environment and Biodiversity

In news:

  • IUCN status: vulnerable
  • Flying bulldog is world’s largest bee and is roughly the size of a human thumb
  • It has been rediscovered in a remote part of Indonesia
  • First sighting was nearly 40 years ago
  • The bee (Megachile pluto), which lives in the Indonesian island region of North Moluccas, makes its nest in termite mounds, using its large fang-like mandibles to collect sticky resin to protect its home from the termites.

Person/Award in news: Seoul Peace Prize

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi was given the Peace Prize for 2018 for his contribution to international cooperation and fostering global economic growth.



TOPIC:General studies 2

  • Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes
  • Rights and Welfare of STs, SCs, and OBCs – Schemes & their Performance, Mechanisms, Laws Institutions and Bodies

Analysis: Supreme Court order on the eviction of forest dwellers


  • In previous Daily News Analysis – Lakhs of forest dwellers face eviction, we read about Supreme Court order on the eviction of forest dwellers.
  • The court directed various state governments to initiate the process of eviction of Scheduled Tribes (STs) and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (OTFDs) from forestland.
  • The SC order raise the questions on the responsibility of the apex court in upholding constitutional claims and equal citizenship as this order negates the claims of citizen under special protection of the Constitution.

Do you know?

  • The SC order was issued in the case of Wildlife First & Ors v. Ministry of Forest and Environment & Ors.
  • The Forest Rights Act 2006 recognizes the rights of forest-dwelling Scheduled Tribes (STs) and other traditional forest-dwellers.


Rejection of claims without proper reasons or wrong interpretation:

  • According to the 2014 report of the High-Level Committee on Socio-Economic, Health and Educational Status of Tribal Communities in India or Xaxa Committee, “claims are being rejected without assigning reasons, or based on wrong interpretation of the ‘OTFD’ definition and the ‘dependence’ clause, or simply for lack of evidence or ‘absence of GPS survey’ or because the land is wrongly considered as ‘not forest land’, or because only forest offence receipts are considered as adequate evidence.
  • The rejections are not being communicated to the claimants, and their right to appeal is not being explained to them nor its exercise facilitated.
  • The mere rejection of claims by the state therefore does not add up to a finding of the crime of “encroachment”, the sheer volume of rejections should instead set alarm bells ringing in the court of procedural improprieties.

Against the Constitution:

  • According to Xaxa Committee, 60% of the forest area in the country is in tribal areas and are protected by Article 19(5), Schedules V and VI of the Constitution.
  • Importantly, the area marked for eviction falls under areas designated under Schedule V and Schedule VI of the Constitution and there is no reference to the implications for governance in the Scheduled Areas and whether the Supreme Court, in fact, has the authority to order evictions of Scheduled Tribes from Scheduled Areas.
  • It raise questions, is it not the supreme obligation of the Supreme Court to protect the Scheduled Tribes and other vulnerable communities from the grave harms of violent dispossession?

Against the spirit of Landmark 1997 Samata Judgement:

  • The Supreme Court had delivered an authoritative verdict in favour of the right to livelihood of the tribals inhabiting the scheduled areas of the country.
  • It had ruled that the tribal land, and forest land in scheduled areas could not be leased to non-tribals or private companies for mining or industrial operations otherwise it would completely destroy the legal and constitutional fabric made to protect the tribal communities. Such activities can only be done by tribal people or by a government undertaking.


  • In the recent judgments of the apex court on the right to privacy and Section 377, the court has given importance to autonomy, liberty, dignity, fraternity and constitutional morality as the pillars of transformative constitutionalism.
  • It is the same court in the same era that has now ordered the dispossession of entire communities protected under the Constitution.
  • According to historian and human rights activist Ramchandra Guha, India’s tribal populations had, over decades, lost their homes to dams, mines and factories.
  • And now a Supreme Court-mandated eviction from their forests had once again proved how “totally vulnerable” these ancient jungle people remain.

Connecting the dots:

  • Critically analyze the recent Supreme Court order directed various state governments to initiate the process of eviction of Scheduled Tribes (STs) and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (OTFDs) from forestland.


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 Financial Action Task Force (FATF)

  1. It is a policy-making body which works to generate the necessary political will to bring about national legislative and regulatory reforms for combating money laundering
  2. It was established especially to combat terror financing

Select the correct statements

  1. 1 Only
  2. 2 Only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Q.2) List of “Non-Cooperative Countries or Territories” (NCCTs) is prepared by

  1. Financial Action Task Force
  2. International Monetary Fund
  3. World Bank
  4. None of the above

Q.3) Consider the following statements about Financial Action Task Force (FATF):

  1. It is a Paris­based multi­disciplinary and inter­governmental body whose purpose is the development and promotion of national and international policies to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.
  2. It was founded at the 1989 OECD Economic Summit.

Select the correct code:

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Q.4) Under Indus Water treaty which of the following rivers are governed by India?

  1. Beas, Ravi and Sutlej
  2. Indus, Chenab and Jhelum
  3. Indus, Chenab and Sutlej
  4. Beas Ravi and Chenab

Q.5) Consider the following statements

  1. It is the largest tributary of Indus.
  2. It is also known as Chandrabhaga.
  3. It flows for more than 1000km before entering into Pakistan.

Choose the river which best suits the above statements

  1. Jhelum
  2. Chenab
  3. Satluj
  4. Beas

Q.6) The Ujh project is a step towards India’s utilisation of waters of the Indus and its tributaries in keeping with its rights under the Indus Water treaty. Ujh is a tributary of which of the following rivers?

  1. Ravi
  2. Jhelum
  3. Chenab
  4. Beas

Q.7) Consider the following statements with reference to Ujh multipurpose project

  1. The project will provide irrigation and hydropower from waters of river Ujh, which is a tributary of river Jhelum.
  2. The project is aimed at utilizing India’s rights under Indus Waters Treaty.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. 1 and 2
  4. None

Q.8) Repurpose Cooking Oil (RUCO) initiative to collect and convert used cooking oil into bio-fuel was launched by –

  1. Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)
  2. CSIR-Indian Institute of Petroleum
  3. Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)
  4. Indian Council of Agricultural Research

Q.9) Consider the following statements:

  1. Flying bulldog is world’s largest bee
  2. IUCN status: Extinct in the Wild
  3. The smallest mammal is the Bumblebee

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

  1. Only 1
  2. Only 2
  3. 1 and 2
  4. None


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