(PRELIMS + MAINS FOCUS)
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II – Policies and interventions and GS-III – Conservation
- Recently, India and the UK have launched a new workstream to promote industrial energy efficiency under Clean Energy Ministerial’s (CEM) Industrial Deep Decarbonization Initiative (IDDI).
- It is coordinated by UNIDO (United Nations Development Industrial organisation).
- It was launched in the ongoing 12th CEM (CEM12) Meeting, virtually hosted by Chile.
About 12th CEM Meeting
- Objective: To infuse green technologies and stimulate demand for low-carbon industrial material.
- India is committed to cut emissions intensity per unit of GDP by 33 to 35% by 2030.
- The commitment depends on effective deployment of low carbon technologies in Energy Intensive Sectors like Iron & Steel, Cement and Petrochemicals.
About Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM)
- It was established in December 2009 at the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) CoP in Copenhagen.
- To promote policies and programs that advance clean energy technology
- To share lessons learned and best practices
- To encourage the transition to a global clean energy economy.
- Focus Areas
- Improve energy efficiency worldwide.
- Enhance clean energy supply.
- Expand clean energy access.
- 29 countries
- India is also a member country.
Industrial Deep Decarbonization Initiative (IDDI)
- IDDI is an initiative of CEM.
- It is a global coalition of public and private organisations who are working to stimulate demand for low carbon industrial materials.
- IDDI is an initiative of CEM.
- To standardise carbon assessments
- Establish ambitious public and private sector procurement targets
- Incentivise investment into low-carbon product development and design industry guidelines.
- Supporting Countries:
- The IDDI is co-led by the UK and India
- Current members also include Germany and Canada.
- Encouraging governments and the private sector to buy low carbon steel and cement.
- Sourcing and sharing data for common standards and targets.
Part of: GS Prelims and GS -III – Sci and tech; Space
- NASA has selected two missions to the planet Venus.
Details about the missions
- The missions are called DAVINCI+ and VERITAS
- These will be launched between 2028 and 2030.
- DAVINCI+ is ‘Deep Atmosphere Venus Investigation of Noble gases, Chemistry, and Imaging’
- It is the first US-led mission to the planet’s atmosphere since 1978.
- It will try to understand Venus’ composition to see how the planet formed and evolved.
- It also consists of a descent sphere that will pass through the planet’s thick atmosphere and make observations and take measurements of noble gases and other elements.
- It will also try to return the first high resolution photographs of a geological feature, tesserae, that is unique to Venus. The presence of tesseraes may suggest that Venus has tectonic plates like Earth.
- The second mission called VERITAS is ‘Venus Emissivity, Radio Science, InSAR, Topography, and Spectroscopy’
- It will map the planet’s surface to determine its geologic history and understand the reasons why it developed so differently from Earth.
Part of: GS Prelims and GS -II – International Relations
- India will vote in support of Maldives in the election of the President of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) that will be held on 7th June.
What you need to know about UNGA President
- The President is the presiding officer of the General Assembly.
- The member nations of the UNGA vote for the President on a yearly basis.
- The presidency rotates annually between the five geographic groups:
- Eastern European
- Latin American and Caribbean
- Western European and other States.
- No permanent member of the United Nations Security Council ever serves as UNGA president.
- Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit (1900 – 1990) of India served as 8th President of the UNGA in 1953.
- She was the First woman president of UNGA.
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-III – Economy
- Dr. K.P. Krishnan headed the expert committee on Variable Capital Company (VCC).
- It has submitted its report on the feasibility of Variable Capital Companies in the International Financial Services Centres in India.
Why was the committee set up?
- The IFSCA set up this Committee to explore the potential for allowing another legal structure, popularly known as a VCC, as an additional option through which asset managers could pool the investors’ funds.
- The VCC structure removes some of the key limitations of companies.
- It provides for higher regulatory standards than those applicable to trusts.
Report of the committee
- The Committee assessed the features of a VCC or its equivalent, in other countries such as the UK, Singapore, Ireland and Luxembourg.
- The Committee recommended the adoption of a VCC-like legal structure for the purpose of conducting fund management activity in IFSCs
- The Committee recognized that the legal framework governing entities should provide certainty and clarity to investors.
Part of: GS Prelims and GS -II – International Relations
- The African Union suspended Mali’s membership in response to the military coup and it threatened Mali with sanctions if a civilian-led government was not restored.
- West African regional bloc Economic Community of West African States ECOWAS had also suspended Mali.
- Mali is a landlocked country in West Africa. Capital: Bamako.
About African Union
- It is a continental union consisting of 55 countries of Africa.
- In 2017, the AU admitted Morocco as a member state.
- The AU was announced in the Sirte Declaration in Sirte, Libya in 1999.
- It was founded in 2001 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
- It was launched in 2002 in Durban, South Africa.
- The AU’s secretariat, the African Union Commission, is based in Addis Ababa
India and AU
- India is a member of the AU Partners Group (AUPG), which meets periodically in Addis Ababa.
- India-Africa Forum Summit was the first ever India-Africa Forum Summit, participated by the Leaders of 14 African countries and the African Union Commission.
- It represented a turning point in the India- AU relations.
- The Summit adopted the Delhi Declaration and the Africa-India Framework for Cooperation, which constituted the blueprint for cooperation between India and Africa in the 21st century.
Ranjitsinh Disale appointed as an Advisor to the World Bank
Ranjitsinh Disale was the first Indian teacher to receive the Global Teacher Award
- He has been appointed by the World Bank as its Advisor till December 2024.
- World Bank has recently launched the Global Coach Program
- It is a new initiative focused on accelerating learning by helping countries improve in-service teacher professional development (TPD) programs and systems.
- GS-1: Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.
- GS-2: Mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
Context: Patan Jamal Vali v. State of Andhra Pradesh, 2021 – Case was about sexual assault on a blind 22-year-old Dalit woman.
- The trial court and the High Court had convicted the accused for rape under Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), and under Section 3(2)(v) of the PoA Act, and sentenced him to life imprisonment.
- Supreme Court confirmed the conviction and the punishment for rape under the IPC but set aside the conviction under the PoA Act
Concept of Intersectionality
- When the identity of a woman intersects with her caste, class, religion, disability and sexual orientation, she may face violence and discrimination due to two or more grounds.
- It understood that multiple sources of oppression operated cumulatively to produce a specific experience of subordination for the blind Dalit woman (Patan Jamal Vali v. State of AP)
- Despite recognising the intersectional theory in Patan Jamal Vali v. State of AP, the court set aside conviction under the PoA Act.
- In cases of sexual violence against Dalit and Adivasi women, courts have almost consistently set aside convictions under the PoA Act.
- Ramdas and Others v. State of Maharashtr (2006)
- Dinesh Alias Buddha v. State of Rajasthan (2006)
- Asharfi v. State of Uttar Pradesh (2017)
- Khuman Singh v. State of Madhya Pradesh (2019)
In all these judgments, the court held that there was no evidence to show that the accused committed sexual assault on the ground that the victim was member of an SC/ST community.
- The repeated setting aside of convictions under the PoA Act bolsters the allegations that the law is misused and amounts to the erasure of caste-based violence faced by women
- In the recent Parliamentary Standing Committee Report on Atrocities and Crimes against Women and Children, the “high acquittal rate motivates and boosts the confidence of dominant and powerful communities for continued perpetration”.
We need to stop hiding behind smokescreens of hyper-technicality of evidence and recognise caste-based violence against women when it stares us in the face. Else, our caste discrimination laws will be rendered toothless.
Connecting the dots:
- Rape & Sexual Crimes Law in India
- Punitive Responses to Sexual Violence Need Rethink
- Sexual Harassment at workplaces
- Disha Act of Andhra Pradesh
SCIENCE & TECH/ECONOMY/ GOVERNANCE
- GS-3: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.
- GS-3: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.
Context: Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter have long contributed to the democratisation of voices across the world.
Unfortunately, the parallel forces of capitalism and information colonisation have wrought national security and the rule of law in democracies.
Concerns of Social Media
- Speed prioritised over depth: On a fundamental level, social media has eroded mainstream media and fostered a culture of speedy and commercialised news at the cost of nuanced & in-depth coverage.
- Different from Traditional Media: The centrality of the business model of social media revolves around one concept: social media companies are the platforms and not the creators of content or information.
- Invest on Human Psychology: Social media companies invest billions of dollars in R&D in understanding human psychology so as to develop algorithms that feed them the content they prefer.
- Creation of Echo Chambers: The social media platforms generate revenue from users’ clicks by showing them content they wish to see and believe. Social media minimises exposure to opposing views as that would not generate their revenue.
- Half-baked Opinions: Social media influencers for increasing likes and followers can comment on law and order and national security matters without responsibility
- Unable to balance competing interests: Social media companies have been unable to balance the national security concerns with the capitalist motivations of profit.
- Liable to mislead & misuse: As social media competes for the attention of the masses, it becomes a tool of information warfare and propaganda While social media gives voice to the voiceless, it is also used to polarise society.
- National Security Threats: The attention-driven social media model may also make a country vulnerable to separatist groups who can mobilise large crowds by spreading false information at lightning speed.
- Used for attack on India’s image & morale: The external adversaries like China and Pakistan have pushed anti-Indian narratives on social media and tried to undermine Indian soldiers’ morale during the recent border conflict with China. Social media platforms have been used by Pakistan to accuse India of human rights violations in Kashmir falsely
- As social media companies and AI become increasingly advanced and powerful, it is pertinent to introduce regulations and taxations on social media.
- As a short term measure, the lawmakers should focus on how IT laws can minimise threats to national security, including theft of data and society’s polarisation.
- To reduce the risk of radicalisation, the IT community should advocate for contracts between employers and employees on YouTube and Instagram so different interest groups do not use them.
- Additionally, there is a heightened need for digital literacy, especially amongst the growing youth population.
Connecting the dots:
- New IT Rules – Guidelines for Social Media
- Twitter Controversy during Farmers protest
- Dominance of Big tech
- Australia’s News Media Bargaining Code
(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 Global Coach Program initiative has been launched by which of the following?
- World Health Organisation
- Amnesty International
- World Bank
Q.2 Clean Energy Ministerial’s (CEM) Industrial Deep Decarbonization Initiative was launched by which of the following countries?
- USA and Japan
- China and Sri Lanka
- France and Russia
- India and UK
ANSWERS FOR 4th June 2021 TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE (TYK)
On Global Warming:
About simultaneous elections: