IAS UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 30th November 2019
(PRELIMS + MAINS FOCUS)
Vulture conservation centre in U.P.
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-III – Environment Conservation
- In a major step to conserve the endangered vulture population, the Uttar Pradesh government will set up state’s first vulture conservation and breeding centre in Maharajganj district.
- The new centre would be set up in association with Bombay Natural History Society, a wildlife research organization
- It will be the first scientific center of vultures in the state to find out which species is most threatened and the locations where these natural scavengers are thriving
- It will be set up on the lines of Jatayu Conservation Breeding Centre at Pinjore in Haryana, which is also the first in the country.
- The Indian vulture (Gyps indicus) found in India, Pakistan and Nepal has been listed as critically endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List since 2002
- The population of three species of endangered resident Gyps vultures in India – white-backed vulture, long-billed vulture and slender-billed vulture is 6,000, 12,000 and 1,000, respectively
Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains I – Social Issues
- UNICEF has launched ‘YuWaah’ Generation Unlimited in India on 1.11.2019.
- It is a multi-stakeholder alliance which aims to facilitate youth to gain relevant skills for productive lives and the future of work.
- The target age group of YuWaah includes adolescent girls and boys.
- Its key mission is to promote access to foundational, transferable and 21st century skills for youth inside and outside formal education systems, which includes defining foundational skills, life skills and flexible learning and identifying and scaling impactful delivery models.
- YuWaah intends to create platforms to guide youth to market opportunities (career guidance, mentorship, internships, apprenticeships) and facilitate integration of career guidance in school education.
Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains II – International Affairs
- Mauritius called the UK an “illegal colonial occupier”, after UK ignored a UN mandated deadline to return the Chagos Islands, a small archipelago in the Indian Ocean, to Mauritius.
- Mauritius has argued that the Chagos Islands has been a part of its territory since at least the 18th century.
- UK broke the archipelago away from Mauritius in 1965 and the islands of Aldabra, Farquhar, and Desroches from the Seychelles in the region to form the British Indian Ocean Territory.
- After Mauritius gained independence from the UK in 1968, the United Kingdom refused to return the Chagos Islands to Mauritius
- UK claimed in petitions submitted to the Permanent Court of Arbitration(at The Hague) that Chagos island was required to “accommodate the United States’ desire to use certain islands in the Indian Ocean for defence purposes”.
- The largest island on the Chagos Islands archipelago, Diego Garcia, is where the US and the UK operate a large military base and was also used as a US military base for the US-led attacks against Afghanistan and Iraq in the 2000s.
- In June 2017, at the UN General Assembly, 94 countries voted in support of Mauritius’ resolution to seek an advisory opinion on the legal status of the Chagos Islands from the International Court of Justice in The Hague.
- In February 2019, the UN’s highest court of justice, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), ordered the UK to return the Chagos Islands to Mauritius “as rapidly as possible
- For now, the UK might possibly be searching for reassurance in the fact that the ICJ ruling is not binding and no immediate sanctions or adverse actions will be taken against it.
GLOBAL MIGRATION REPORT 2020
Part of: GS Prelims and GS Mains II – International Affairs
- The Global Migration Report 2020 was recently released by the UN-affiliated International Organization for Migration (IOM)
- Of the 272 international migrants worldwide (3.5% of the global population), India accounts for the highest share with 17.5 million Indians living outside the country. India is followed by Mexico (11.8 million) and China (10.7 million).
- Roughly two-thirds of international migrants are labour migrants.
- India is the leading recipient of remittances. International remittances in 2018 (2020 report) reached $689 billion, out of which India received $78.6 million from the 17.5 million living abroad. India is currently followed by China ($67.4 billion) and Mexico ($35.7 billion).
- The top migration corridors for Indians are the United Arab Emirates, the US and Saudi Arabia.
- The highest number of migrants entering India come from Bangladesh.
- The top destinations for international migrants is the USA followed by Germany, Saudi Arabia, Russian Federation and the UK
- Udham Singh, born in Sunam in Punjab’s Sangrur district in 1899, was a political activist who got associated with the Ghadar Party while in the US.
- In 1934, Singh made his way to London with the purpose of assassinating Michael O’Dwyer, who in 1919 had been the Lieutenant Governor of Punjab and unsurprisingly, Singh considered O’Dwyer to be responsible for the massacre.
- Instead of Dyer, who instructed his men to open fire at the crowd gathered in JallianwalaBagh, O’Dwyer is considered to be the actual perpetrator, since Dyer could not have executed it without his permission.
- On March 13, 1940 Singh shot O’Dwyer at a meeting of the East India Association and the Royal Central Asian Society at Caxton Hill. Singh was immediately arrested.
- At the court he referred to himself as Mohamed Singh Azad, to symbolise Hindu-Sikh-Muslim unity in the fight for India’s freedom. He was hanged on July 31, 1940 at Pentonville Prison.
- For avenging the JallianwalaBagh massacre, Singh is seen by some as a hero.
- Gandhi had famously decried Singh’s revenge as an “act of insanity”.
- In 2018 his statue was installed at JallianwalaBagh during Baisakhi.
- Udham Singh Nagar district in Uttarakhand is named after the freedom fighter.
TOPIC: General Studies 3:
- Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment
India’s first ever slowdown
- Since Independence, there have been at least eight episodes of significant GDP growth rate declines over two years or more — 1961-62 and 1962-63, 1965-66 and 1966-67, 1971-72 and 1972-73, 1984-85 to 1987-88, 1990-91 to 1992-93, 2000-01 to 2002-03, 2012-13 and 2013-14, and the current one from 2018-19.
- Gross domestic product (GDP) grew 5% in the first quarter of FY20, data released by the government showed, marking the slowest growth since the fourth quarter of FY13. GDP growth was 8% in the year-earlier quarter and 5.8% in the preceding one.
- China’s economy grew 6.2% in the June quarter.
- The technical term for the same is growth recession.
- A recession is defined in economics as three consecutive quarters of contraction in GDP. But since India is a large developing economy, contraction is a rarity.
- The last instance of negative growth for India was in 1979.
- A growth recession is more commonplace where the economy continues to grow but at a slower pace than usual for a sustained period, what India has been facing nowadays.
- The growth of the Indian economy had been predominated by consumption inclusive of both — Private Final Consumption Expenditure (PFCE) as well as the Government Final Consumption Expenditure (GFCE).
- The recent sharp fall in PFCE in the June quarter to 3.1 per cent compared to 7.2 per cent in the March quarter has significantly contributed to the recent slowdown.
- Major component of India’s GDP is investment, induced by both — private and government sectors. It has been a key driver of growth since the liberalisation of 1991, fell by 6.2 percentage points in 2014-19 than in 2011-14.
- Partly driven by domestic problems like neglected farmers
- Weakening global economy
- Mr. Trump’s fusillade of trade conflicts.
- Last weekend’s attack on two Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities, which sent the global price of oil soaring, underscored just how vulnerable India and other developing countries are to external factors beyond their control.
- The overhang of bad bank loans, coupled with recent defaults by nonbank financial firms, has curbed lending to consumers and businesses.
- Policy decisions by India’s central and state governments have worsened the country’s downturn
For example Auto manufacturers: New safety and emissions standards increased the cost of vehicles, nine states raised taxes on car sales, and the banks and finance companies that fund dealers and 80 percent of consumer car purchases were paralyzed by the credit crunch.
- The textile industry, which employs about 45 million people and is India’s second-largest employer after agriculture, is emblematic of the country’s distress.
- The slowdown in economy is also expected to adversely affect income growth which, in turn, would further dent consumption demand. A favourable low base effect, however, would be seen third quarter onwards, which will help push the headline growth number higher.
Connecting the dots:
- Unlike all the earlier downturns whose precursors/triggers were supply-side constraints in food and forex, macroeconomic imprudence or external shocks, what we are now experiencing is more of a “western-style” slowdown exacerbated by internal policy misadventures. Analyse
TOPIC: General Studies 3:
- Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment
- The Climate Conference COP25, is the actual Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Climate Change, UNFCCC, which is tasked with making sure that the Convention, (and now the 2015 Paris Agreement, which strengthens the Convention), are being implemented.
- The world is already 1.1°C warmer than it was at the onset of the industrial revolution, and it is already having a significant impact on the world, and on people’s lives.
- Global temperatures can be expected to rise by 3.4 to 3.9°C this century, which would bring wide-ranging and destructive climate impacts.
Evidence of the impacts of climate change
- According to the 2019 WMO levels of heat-trapping greenhouse gases in the atmosphere have reached another new record high.
- This continuing long-term trend means that future generations will be confronted with increasingly severe impacts of climate change, including rising temperatures, more extreme weather, water stress, sea level rise and disruption to marine and land ecosystems.)
- The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) 2019 Emissions Gap Report, that greenhouse gas emissions reductions of 7.6 per cent per year from 2020 to 2030 are needed to meet the internationally agreed goal of a 1.5°C increase in temperatures over pre-industrial levels.
September climate change summit:
- Focusing global attention on the climate emergency and the urgent need to significantly scale up action.
- Leaders, from many countries and sectors, stepped up.
- More than seventy countries committed to net zero carbon emissions by 2050
- Small island states together committed to achieve carbon neutrality and to move to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030.
- Countries from Pakistan to Guatemala, Colombia to Nigeria, New Zealand to Barbados vowed to plant more than 11 billion trees.
- More than 100 leaders in the private sector committed to accelerating the green economy.
- A group of the world’s largest asset-owners, controlling $2 trillion, pledged to move to carbon-neutral investment portfolios by 2050.
Importance of COP:
- UNFCCC had non-binding limits on greenhouse gas emissions for individual countries, and no enforcement mechanism, various extensions to this treaty were negotiated during recent COPs, including most recently the Paris Agreement, adopted in 2015, in which all countries agreed to step up efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial temperatures and boost climate action financing.
- COP25 is the final COP before we enter the defining year of 2020, when many nations must submit new climate action plans. Among the many elements that need to be ironed out is the financing of climate action worldwide.
- Currently, not enough is being done to meet the three climate goals: reducing emissions 45 per cent by 2030; achieving climate neutrality by 2050 (which means a net zero carbon footprint), and stabilizing global temperature rise at 1.5°C by the end of the century.
- A series of reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and other agencies have been reiterating through the year that unless countries scale up their actions significantly, there is little hope of keeping average global temperatures within 2ºC higher than pre-industrial trends.
- Because the clock is ticking on climate change, the world cannot afford to waste more time, and a bold, decisive, ambitious way forward needs to be agreed.
Connecting the dots:
- The world already endures life-threatening effects of global warming through larger and more powerful storms, droughts and flooding
(TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE)
Model questions: (You can now post your answers in comment section)
- Correct answers of today’s questions will be provided in next day’s DNA section. Kindly refer to it and update your answers.
- Comments Up-voted by IASbaba are also the “correct answers”.
Q.1) Consider the following statements about Yuwaah Initiative
- The aim of the initiative to facilitate youth to gain relevant skills for productive lives and the future of work
- It is launched by World Bank in collaboration with NITI Aayog
Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?
- 1 only
- 2 only
- Both 1 and 2
- Neither 1 nor 2
Q.2) Jatayu Conservation Breeding Centre is located in which State/Union Territory of India?
- Uttar Pradesh
- Andaman & Nicobar Islands
Q.3) Global Migration Report is released by which organisation/body?
- World Economic Forum
- World Bank
- International Organization for Migration (IOM)
- None of the above
Q.4) Chagos island often seen in news is located in which water body?
- Mediterranean Sea
- Pacific Ocean
- Indian Ocean
- Atlantic Ocean
ANSWERS FOR 29 Nov 2019 TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE (TYK)
Bringing back treasures: On stolen idols
A political turning point or a pause?
Getting organ donation to tick again
Not as you say, but as you do
First six months of Modi 2.0 showcase the PM’s vision for his second term
There was another India, reveals a new database of periodicals published between 1857-1947