IASbaba's Daily Current Affairs Analysis
(PRELIMS & MAINS Focus)
- Prelims – Science and Technology
In News: New directions from Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) for regulating VPN providers will be effective from June 28.
- The rule mandates VPN providers to record and keep their customers’ logs for 180 days.
- It requires the firms to collect and store customer data for up to five years.
- It further mandated that any cybercrime recorded must be reported to the CERT within 6 hours of the crime.
- The directions applicable to data centres, virtual private server (VPS) providers, cloud service providers, virtual asset service providers, virtual asset exchange providers, custodian wallet providers and Government organisations.
- Firms that provide Internet proxy-like services through VPN technologies also come under the ambit of the new rule.
- Corporate entities are not under the scanner.
In response to CERT-In rules many VPN providers are planning to shift servers out of the country or cater to users in India through virtual servers located in Singapore and UK.
What is a virtual server, and what are its uses?
- A virtual server is a simulated server environment built on an actual physical server.
- It recreates the functionality of a dedicated physical server.
- The virtual twin functions like a physical server that runs software.
- It uses resources of the physical server.
- Multiple virtual servers can run on a single physical server.
- Virtualising servers helps reallocate resources for changing workloads.
- Converting one physical server into multiple virtual servers allows organisations to use processing power and resources more efficiently
- Running multiple operating systems and applications on a single physical machine reduces the cost as it consumes less space, hardware.
- Virtualisation also reduces cost as maintaining a virtual server infrastructure is low compared to physical server infrastructure.
- Virtual servers are also said to offers higher security than a physical server infrastructure as the operating system and applications are enclosed in a virtual machine.
- This helps contain security attacks and malicious behaviors inside the virtual machine.
- Virtual servers are also useful in testing and debugging applications in different operating systems and versions without having to manually install and run them in several physical machines.
Can server relocation and virtualisation help VPN providers circumvent the new rules?
- The rules are applicable to any entity whatsoever in the matter of cyber incidents and cyber security incidents, regardless of whether they have a physical presence in India or not, as long as they deliver services to Indian users.
Virtual Private Network
- Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a service that helps internet users to stay private online by hiding their (Internet Protocol) IP addresses.
- VPN establishes an encrypted connection between the user’s computer and the internet, providing a private tunnel for their data, making them anonymous and blocking anyone from tracking their movements like where they are going or what they are doing.
- It is the IP address – a special number unique to the user’s internet network– that helps websites, law enforcement agencies, cybercriminals or anyone else looking into an individual’s internet activities and track down their accurate location.
- Without a VPN, the user’s IP address is visible to the web. VPNs obscure the user’s internet usage by jumping the signal off multiple servers.
- VPN extends through encrypted connections over the Internet.
- Since the line is encrypted between the network and the device connected to it, the traffic remains private.
Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In):
- CERT-In is the national nodal agency for responding to computer security related incidents.
- CERT-In has been operational since 2004.
- It works under Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology
CERT-In has been designated to serve as the national agency to perform the following functions in the area of cyber security:
- Collection, analysis and dissemination of information on cyber incidents.
- Forecast and alerts of cyber security incidents.
Source: The Hindu
Previous Year Question
Q.1) What is a “Virtual Private Network”? (2011)
- It is a private computing network of an organization where remote users can transmit encrypted information through the server of the organization.
- It is a computer network across a public internet that provides users access to their organization’s network while maintaining the security of the information transmitted.
- It is a computer network in which users can access a shared pool of computing resources through a service provider
- None of the statements (a), (b), and (c) given above is a correct description of Virtual Private Network.
- Prelims – Polity
- Mains – GS (Polity)
Context: The crisis in Maharashtra shows the anti-defection law to be ineffective, even counterproductive.
- The political crisis in Maharashtra has brought focus back on the anti-defection law.
- The law has failed to shore up the stability of elected governments.
- Not only have many governments fallen due to defections in recent times, but the defectors have not suffered any cautionary consequences.
- The Speaker has delayed deciding on the disqualification.
- Due to Anti-Defection law, the chain of accountability has been broken by making legislators accountable primarily to the political party.
- Through 91st CAA, the anti-defection law created an exception for anti-defection rulings. The amendment does not recognise a ‘split’ in a legislature party and instead recognises a ‘merger’
- The defection leads to instability in the government and affects the administration.
- Defection also promotes horse-trading of legislators which clearly go against the mandate of a democratic setup
- The voters don’t seem to care about punishing the defectors either – 11 out of the 14 defectors who stood for re-election in the 2019 Karnataka bypolls won.
What needs to be done?
Reforms at Party level
- Political parties must address organizational and ideological infirmities which have made them susceptible to mass defections in the first place.
- Political parties need ideological clarity and the ability to attract individuals with a sense of purpose and not love for power alone
- Internal party processes must be geared to identify and promote members into leadership positions
- Create intra-party forums: provide some institutional leverage to express intra-party dissidence.
- The Election Commission has suggested it should be the deciding authority in defection cases
- The Supreme Court has suggested that Parliament should set up an independent tribunal headed by a retired judge of the higher judiciary to decide defection cases swiftly and impartially.
- Some commentators have said the law has failed and recommended its removal – as the law has undermined not just the very principle of representation but has also contributed to polarization in our country by making it impossible to construct a majority on any issue outside of party affiliation.
- The Tenth Schedule – popularly known as the Anti-Defection Act – was included in the Constitution via the 52nd Amendment Act, 1985 and sets the provisions for disqualification of elected members on the grounds of defection to another political party.
- It was a response to the toppling of multiple state governments by party-hopping MLAs after the general elections of 1967.
- However, it allows a group of MP/MLAs to join another political party without inviting the penalty for defection. And it does not penalise political parties for encouraging or accepting defecting legislators.
- As per the 1985 Act, a ‘defection’ by one-third of the elected members of a political party was considered a ‘merger’.
- But the 91st Constitutional Amendment Act, 2003, changed this and now at least two-thirds of the members of a party have to be in favour of a “merger” for it to have validity in the eyes of the law.
- The decision on questions as to disqualification on ground of defection are referred to the Chairman or the Speaker of such House, which is subject to ‘Judicial review’.
- However, the law does not provide a time-frame within which the presiding officer has to decide a defection case.
Grounds of Disqualification:
- If an elected member voluntarily gives up his membership of a political party.
- If he votes or abstains from voting in such House contrary to any direction issued by his political party or anyone authorised to do so, without obtaining prior permission.
- As a pre-condition for his disqualification, his abstention from voting should not be condoned by his party or the authorised person within 15 days of such incident.
- If any independently elected member joins any political party.
- If any nominated member joins any political party after the expiry of six months.
Source: Indian Express
- Prelims – Current Affairs
In News: G7 aiming for $600 bn global infrastructure programme
- The G7 group announced an attempt to compete with China’s formidable Belt and Road Initiative by raising $600 billion for global infrastructure programmes in poor countries
- The Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment will deliver hundreds of billions of dollars and deliver quality, sustainable infrastructure that makes a difference in people’s lives around the world, strengthens and diversifies our supply chains
- The proposed G7 funding would depend largely on private companies being willing to commit to massive investments
Group of Seven (G7)
- It is an intergovernmental organisation that was formed in 1975.
- The bloc meets annually to discuss issues of common interest like global economic governance, international security and energy policy.
- The G7 countries are the UK, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the US.
- All the G7 countries and India are a part of G20.
- The G7 does not have a formal constitution or a fixed headquarters. The decisions taken by leaders during annual summits are non-binding.
Source: Economic Times
Previous Year Questions
Q.1) In which one of the following groups are all the four countries members of G2O? (2020)
- Argentina, Mexico, South Africa and Turkey
- Australia, Canada, Malaysia and New Zealand
- Brazil, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Vietnam
- Indonesia, Japan, Singapore and South Korea
- Mains – GS (Economy)
Context: Bringing MSMEs into inclusive and sustainable global value chains
- MSMEs are the largest employer in India outside of agriculture, employing over 1 crore people, or 45% of all workers.
- It is no exaggeration to call MSMEs – privately owned enterprise with less than ₹50 crore in investments in plant and machinery and turnover below ₹250 crore – the backbone of the Indian economy.
- The disruption of the pandemic severely impacted MSMEs
- Their small size and lack of access to resources meant that many were only beginning to mount a fragile recovery just when renewed war, supply shocks and soaring fuel, food and fertilizer prices presented a host of new threats.
- And all of this comes against the backdrop of the ongoing climate crisis, the greatest disruption multiplier of all.
- There is high degree of informality in the sector, with many enterprises unregistered, and both employers and workers are lacking awareness of and commitment to comply with labour and environmental laws.
- As a result, informal enterprises cannot access formal MSME support and financing nor participate in global value chains that require full compliance with all applicable regulations.
The Government of India has rightly identified the development of the country’s MSME ecosystem as a top priority for achieving Atma Nirbhar Bharat
India’s ambitious “Make in India” campaign aims put the country up the manufacturing value chain to position itself as a global manufacturing hub
What’s need to be done?
- Digitalisation concerns: With few exceptions, digitalisation into smart manufacturing operations is still in its infancy.
- Therefore, there is a need for replicable digital solutions adapted for MSMEs, including digital enhancements for machinery and equipment currently in use.
- Government initiatives such as the Digital Saksham and the interlinking of the Udyam, e-Shram, National Career Service (NCS), and Atmanirbhar Skilled Employee-Employer Mapping (ASEEM) portals show the promise of targeted digitalisation schemes.
- Environmental impact: greening reduces the environmental impact of MSME operations and fosters cleantech innovation and entrepreneurship to accelerate the transition to a circular and low carbon economy.
- As a result MSMEs invested themselves during the cash-strapped COVID period ₹157 crore to save 13,105 tonnes of oil equivalent and ₹81 crore in annual operating costs and preventing 83,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions
- Provide credit access for R&D in green technologies
- To increase the resilience of supply in response to recent shocks, production locations for global value chains are increasingly shifting and diversifying across countries and regions.
- This presents a strategic opportunity for India to tap into.
- Supply chain relocation is often accompanied by greater involvement of suppliers in innovation and product development.
- India should utilize this opportunities with carefully framed investment policies like incentives in tax, credit support etc
The compelling vision of India as a world-class manufacturing and services hub for the world, moving towards upper middle-income status and achieving the SDGs, can best be achieved with the widespread and transformational uplifting of the MSME segment.
Government initiatives, supported by international institutions and partners, have helped demonstrate this is doable if further scaled up, with lessons for enhancement being drawn together.
Source: The Hindu
- Mains – GS 1 (Social Issues)
Context: Amid the overturning of the landmark Roe v. Wade judgement in the U.S, the laws on abortions in India have come to focus
- In order to reduce maternal mortality owing to unsafe abortions, the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act was brought into force in 1971.
- This law is an exception to the Indian Penal Code (IPC) provisions of 312 and 313 and sets out the rules of how and when a medical abortion can be carried out.
- The latest amendment to the MTP Act was made in 2021
What is the MTP (Amendment) Act, 2021?
- The 2021 Act increased the upper limit of the gestation period to which a woman can seek a medical abortion to 24 weeks from 20 weeks permitted in the 1971 Act
- Under the 2021 Act, medical termination of pregnancy is permitted if it is backed by medical opinion and is being sought for at least one of the following reasons —
- If the continuation of pregnancy would involve a risk to the life of the pregnant woman
- If its continuation would result in grave injury to the woman’s physical or mental health
- In the case of a substantial risk that if the child was born, it would suffer from serious physical or mental abnormality
- The pregnancy can be terminated upto 24 weeks of gestational age after the opinion of two registered medical practitioners under these conditions —
- If the woman is either a survivor of sexual assault or rape or incest
- If she is a minor
- If her marital status has changed during the ongoing pregnancy
- If she has major physical disabilities or is mentally ill
- On the grounds of foetal malformation incompatible with life or if the child is born, it would be seriously handicapped
- If the woman is in humanitarian settings or disaster, or emergency situations as declared by the government
- Besides, if the pregnancy has to be terminated beyond the 24-week gestational age, it can only be done on the grounds of foetal abnormalities if a four-member Medical Board, as set up in each State under the Act, gives permission to do so.
- The law, notwithstanding any of the above conditions, also provides that where it is immediately necessary to save the life of the pregnant woman, abortion can be carried out at any time by a single registered medical practitioner.
- Unmarried women can also access abortion under the above-mentioned conditions, because it does not mention the requirement of spousal consent.
- If the woman is a minor, however, the consent of a guardian is required.
- Section 5A of the Act contains provisions for the protection of the privacy of a woman undergoing an abortion.
- Despite the fact that existing laws do not permit unconditional abortion in the country, in the landmark 2017 Right to Privacy judgement in the Justice K.S. Puttaswamy v. Union of India and others, the Supreme Court had held that the decision by a pregnant person on whether to continue a pregnancy or not is part of such a person’s right to privacy as well and, therefore, the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 of the Constitution.
What are the criticisms against the abortion law?
- According to a 2018 study in the Lancet, 6 million abortions were accessed every year in India as of 2015.
- The MTP Act requires abortion to be performed only by doctors with specialisation in gynaecology or obstetrics
- According to a study there is a 70% shortage of obstetrician-gynaecologists in rural India.
- As the law does not permit abortion at will, it pushes women to access illicit abortions under unsafe conditions.
- Statistics put the annual number of unsafe and illegal abortions performed in India at 8,00,000, many of them resulting in maternal mortality.
Source: The Hindu
- Mains – GS 2 (International Relations)
Context: Recently, Indian Defence Minister signed Defence Agreements with his Vietnamese counterpart which will significantly enhance the relationship between both the countries.
India-Vietnam Defence Partnership towards 2030:
- Both the Defence Ministers signed the ‘Joint Vision Statement on India-Vietnam Defence Partnership towards 2030’ to bolster bilateral defence cooperation.
Defence Line of Credit:
- The two ministers agreed on the finalisation of the USD 500 million Defence Line of Credit extended to Vietnam with implementation of the projects under it adding substantially to Vietnam’s defence capabilities and furthering the government’s vision of ‘Make in India, Make for the World.’
Mutual Logistics Support:
- Both inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Mutual Logistics Support.
Simulators and a Monetary Grant:
- India will gift two simulators and a monetary grant towards setting up of Language and IT Lab at the Air Force Officers Training School for capacity building of the Vietnamese Armed Forces.
- India had established the Consul General’s office in Hanoi as early as 1956.
- India had stood by Vietnam in opposing US intervention in that country at the cost of embittering Indo-US relations.
- The relationship was further strengthened when India, in the early 1990s, initiated its “Look East Policy”
- They have signed ASEAN- India Free Trade Agreement
- During the Financial Year (FY) April 2020 – March 2021, bilateral trade between India and Vietnam reached USD 11.12 billion.
- Vietnam is interested in India’s Akash surface-to-air systems and Dhruv advanced light helicopters and Brahmos missiles.
- The defence relations also include capacity building, dealing with common security concerns, training of personnel, and cooperation in defence R&D.
- India and Vietnam agreed to strengthen their strategic partnership “in line with India’s Indo-Pacific Oceans Initiative (IPOI) and the ASEAN’s Outlook on Indo-Pacific to achieve shared security, prosperity and growth for all in the region.”
- Cooperation at Multiple Fora like ASEAN, UNSC, Mekong Ganga Cooperation, Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM), etc
- The China factor also weighs heavily in the respective strategic calculus of India and Vietnam.
- Both countries had fought wars with China and both have border problems with that country. China aggressively continues to encroach in the territories of the two countries.
- Hence, it is natural for both the countries to come closer with a view to restrain China from its aggressive actions.
- Focus on Indo-Pacific region: Keeping in mind the strategic challenges in the Indo-Pacific region, both the countries should work together to maintain stability in the region
- Convergence of interest: Blue economy, building supply chain resilience, economic integration of the region etc.
India’s foreign policy envisages India to play an anchor for peace, prosperity and stability in Asia and Africa, deepening ties with Vietnam will only strengthen this narrative.
Source: The Hindu
Daily Practice MCQs
Consider the following statements about Virtual Private Network (VPN)
- It a service that helps internet users to stay private online
- Without a VPN, the user’s IP address is visible to the web
Choose the correct statements:
- 1 only
- 2 only
- Both 1 and 2
- Neither 1 nor 2
Q.2) Which among the following countries are the members of G7?
- USA, UK, France and India
- USA, UK, Singapore and Germany
- India, Germany, UK and France
- Canada, Japan, Italy and France
Q.3) Consider the following statements
- If any independently elected member joins any political party he/she shall be disqualified on the grounds of defection
- The decision on questions as to disqualification on ground of defection are decided by Election Commission
Choose the incorrect statements:
- 1 only
- 2 only
- Both 1 and 2
- Neither 1 nor 2
Baba’s Explainer – BRICS – 14th Summit
- GS-2: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
Context: BRICS, a bloc of five disparate countries, has made it to its 14th summit (2022), suggests there remains a strong convergence of interests amid undeniable differences.
- In the recently held virtual meeting hosted by China, India has described the binding glue as “a similar approach to global governance”.
- The Beijing Declaration that followed the 14th summit, was premised on “making instruments of global governance more inclusive, representative and participatory”.
Read Complete Details on BRICS – 14th Summit
ANSWERS FOR 25th JUNE 2022 – Daily Practice MCQs
Q.1) – d
Q.2) – a
Q.3) – b
Comment the answers to the above questions in the comment section below!!
ANSWERS FOR ‘25th JUNE 2022 – Daily Practice MCQs’ will be updated along with Monday’s Daily Current Affairs.
ANSWERS FOR 24th JUNE 2022 – Daily Practice MCQs
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