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DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 28th April 2022

  • IASbaba
  • April 28, 2022
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(Prelims Focus)


Rising trend in organised sector employment

Part of: Prelims and GS II – Government schemes and policies

Context: As many as 3.14 crore workers were employed in nine industries in the December quarter of 2021, indicating a rising trend in employment in the organised sector, according to Quarterly Employment Survey (QES).

  • Manufacturing sector is the largest employer accounting for around 39% of the estimated total number of workers followed by education sector at 22%.

Indian Mission in Lithuania

Part of: Prelims and GS II – India’s relation with neighbouring countries

Context: Cabinet approves opening of Indian Mission in Lithuania. Opening of Indian Mission in Lithuania will

  • Help expand India’s diplomatic footprint,
  • Deepen political relations and strategic cooperation,
  • Enable growth of bilateral trade, investment and economic engagements,
  • Facilitate stronger people-to-people contacts,
  • Allow for more sustained political outreach in multilateral for a
  • Help garner support for India’s foreign policy objectives.
  • Better assist the Indian community and protect their interests.

Enhancement of India’s diplomatic presence will, inter-alia, provide market access for Indian companies and bolster Indian exports of goods and services. This would have a direct impact in augmenting domestic production and employment in line with our goal of a self-reliant India or ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.


Prime Minister Street Vendor’s AtmaNirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi)

Part of: Prelims and GS II – Government schemes and policies

Context: The Cabinet has approved the continuation of lending under the Prime Minister Street Vendor’s AtmaNirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) beyond March 2022 till December 2024, with focus on

  • Enhanced collateral-free affordable loan corpus
  • Increased adoption of digital transactions
  • Holistic socio-economic development of the Street Vendors and their families.

What is the scheme all about?

  • It is a micro-credit facility that provides street vendors a collateral-free loan of Rs 10,000 with low rates of interest for a period of one year.
  • The Scheme had envisaged to facilitate loans for an amount of Rs. 5,000 crore. Today’s approval has increased the loan amount to Rs. 8,100 crore, thereby providing the Street vendors working capital to further expand their business and making them AtmaNirbhar.

Why was this scheme rolled out?

  • To deal with Impact of Pandemic & Lockdown: The COVID-19 pandemic and the nationwide lockdown disrupted the business cycle and left daily wage workers & street vendors out of work. The scheme aims at aiding the vendors at getting back on their feet financially.
  • Establishing Credit Score & Digital Record: In the long term, it aims at establishing a credit score for the vendors as well as creating a digital record of their socio-economic status, so that they can avail the Central government schemes later.
  • Prevents Debt Trap: Many vendors belong to what we call the informal economy, and often borrow from private lenders which charge them exorbitant rates of interest. This loan charges below 12% rate of interest, and helps prevent street vendors from falling into debt trap.
  • Formalisation of Economy: The scheme also attempts to formalise the informal sector of the economy and provide them safety nets and a means of availing loans in the future.

(Mains Focus)


INTERNATIONAL/ ECONOMY/ GOVERNANCE

  • GS-2: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests
  • GS-3: Internet Governance

Twitter Takeover by Elon Musk

Context:  Social Media platforms have become so vital to the present socio-economic-political lives of people that any changes in the working of these platforms not only impact the firm but has consequences on the larger society.

Recently, Tesla CEO Elon Musk pledged roughly $44bn to buy the social media platform Twitter making him the next owner of it.

  • The board unanimously approved the bid, which will now be presented to shareholders for a vote.
  • Musk, a self-described “free-speech absolutist”, has promised to develop new features on the platform which is keenly watched by the world.

Criticisms with Twitter

  • Twitter has been long accused promoting hate speech and divisive propaganda. It has also been accused of inconsistencies in labelling content as problematic.
  • All these had given the perception that created the perception that it is an interested player rather than a disinterested platform
  • Its efforts to make it a place for healthy conversations — from creating policies around abuse and disinformation to unleashing technology for spotting problematic content early — did little to change the perception.

What are the changes expected to happen once Elon Musk takes over Twitter?

  • Free Speech and Content Moderation: Musk has said that Twitter’s content moderators intervene too much on the platform curbing free speech which is bedrock of Democracy. He has therefore called for Twitter free from content moderation.
  • Introduction of Edit button: Twitter earlier said it is working on an edit button that would allow users to change tweets after they have been posted.
  • Open Source Twitter Algorithm: Algorithm that determines the priority in which tweets get served up to users, can become “open source” or available for the public to view and improve upon. According to Musk, this will help prevent “behind the scenes manipulation” such as fuelling massive foreign propaganda (that Facebook was accused of during 2016 US Presidential Campaign)
  • Making sure users are real: Musk’s solution on the issue of scam bots/ fake accounts is to authenticate “all real humans” or to have accounts overtly linked to other personal identifiers.

What is the criticism of the changes mooted by Elon Musk?

The changes mooted are good in a sense that it will make it less moderated & tries to increase the trust of the public on the platform (by making it open source).

However, there are also certain concerns raised which are as follows

  • It undoes a lot of the work (content moderation techniques) that has been done to combat hate speech and misinformation, that’s going to be a challenge for Twitter.
  • The edit button proposed has a challenge of preventing its abuse, such as changing statements after others have retweeted or endorsed them.
  • The proposal of making algorithm open source grossly oversimplifies how making data public works and that the move raises serious privacy concerns.
  • There are concerns on what Twitter might look like without strong platform moderation. The danger is that unfettered free speech on social media can become very ugly, very quickly.
  • Also, free speech is understood differently by people belonging to different political ideologies. Musk control on platform is akin to pushing his own ideology.
  • It is also ironic considering that Musk had no qualms over the years about using the Twitter to aggressively promote his business interests as well as block and even bully, critics.

Connecting the dots:


(TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE)


Model questions: (You can now post your answers in the comment section)

Q.1) Consider the following statements 

  1. Article 239 AA was inserted into the Constitution by The Constitution (69th Amendment) Act, 1991.
  2. It gives Special Status to Delhi following the recommendations of the S Balakrishnan Committee.

Select the correct code:

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

Q.2) Consider the following statements

  1. Employment Rate (ER) refers to the total number of employed people as a percentage of the working-age population.
  2. Labour force participation rate (LFPR) essentially is the percentage of the working-age (15 years or older) population that is asking for a job.

Select the correct code:

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

Q.3) Consider the following statements

  1. The primary objective of the RBI’s monetary policy is to maintain price stability while keeping in mind the objective of growth.
  2. Price stability is a necessary precondition to sustainable growth.

Select the correct code:

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

ANSWERS FOR 28th APRIL 2022 – TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE (TYK)

1 c
2 c
3 c

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