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DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 8th July 2022

  • IASbaba
  • July 8, 2022
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Mission Vatsalya Scheme

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Current Affairs
  • Mains – GS 1 (Social Issues)

In News: Ministry of Women and Child Development issues Guidelines for Mission Vatsalya Scheme

About the Scheme

  • The MW&CD is implementing a Centrally Sponsored Scheme “Mission Vatsalya” erstwhile Child Protection Services (CPS) Scheme, since 2009-10 for the welfare and rehabilitation of children.

The objective of Mission Vatsalya is to secure a healthy and happy childhood for each and every child in India.

Components under Mission Vatsalya include

  • Improve functioning of statutory bodies;
  • Strengthen service delivery structures;
  • Upscale institutional care/services;
  • Encourage non-institutional community-based care;
  • emergency outreach services;
  • Training and capacity building.

Guidelines

  • The guidelines detail the process by which funds will be disbursed to states under various heads by defining institutionalised arrangements.
  • Funds to states will be approved through the Mission Vatsalya Project Approval Board (PAB), which will be chaired by the WCD Secretary, who will scrutinise and approve annual plans and financial proposals received from states and UTs for release of grants.
  • Secretaries of the departments of Home Affairs, Social Justice and Empowerment, Panchayati Raj, Rural Development, Housing and Urban Affairs, Labour, Youth Affairs and Sports, Department of School Affairs and Literacy, and the Niti Aayog CEO, will be PAB members.
  • It will be implemented as a Centrally Sponsored Scheme in partnership with state governments and UT administrations, with a fund-sharing pattern in a 60:40 ratio.
  • For the eight states in the Northeast — as well as Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and the UT of Jammu and Kashmir — the Centre and state/UT’s share will be 90:10.
  • The Centre will cover the whole cost in UTs without a legislature.
  • At state level, there will be a committee headed by the Chief Secretary to monitor, review and promote convergence in the implementation of the scheme.
  • There will also be a district-level committee.
  • The guidelines state that Mission Vatsalya will support State Adoption Resource Agencies (SARA), which will support the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) in promoting in-country adoption and regulating inter-country adoption.
  • SARA shall coordinate, monitor and develop the work related to non-institutional care, including adoption in the state.
  • The Mission envisages setting up cradle baby reception centres in at least one specialised adoption agency in a district.
  • Mission Vatsalya will execute a 24×7 helpline service for children, as defined under JJ Act, 2015.
  • Separate children’s homes based on gender (including separate homes for transgender children) and age will be established for children in need of care, as well as for special needs children.
  • States/UTs have also been directed to focus on special needs children in child care institutions, who are unable to attend school with physical or mental disabilities
  • Financial support has also been prescribed for vulnerable children living with extended families or in foster care, supporting their education, nutrition and health needs.
  • After-care has been provided for, for children leaving a child care institution on completion of 18 years, who will now be provided with financial support to facilitate the child’s re-integration into the mainstream of society.
  • This support could also include finances to set up businesses.
  • Under the guidelines, state governments are required to take up the exercise to grade each child care institution (CCI) at fixed intervals.
  • The grading will be done based on infrastructure, quality of services, wellbeing of children, especially in terms of health and education, restoration and rehabilitation of children, etc.

Source:Pib.gov

Indian Express

Previous Year Question

Q.1) What is the aim of the programme ‘Unnat Bharat Abhiyan’? (2017)

  1. Achieving 100% literacy by promoting collaboration between voluntary organizations and government’s education system and local communities.
  2. Connecting institutions of higher education with local communities to address development challenges through appropriate technologies.
  3. Strengthening India’s scientific research institutions in order to make India a scientific and technological power.
  4. Developing human capital by allocating special funds for health care and education of rural and urban poor, and organizing skill development programmes and vocational training for them.

Sub-categorising OBCs

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Polity – Current Affairs
  • Mains – GS 2 (Governance)

In News: The Justice Rohini Commission for sub-categorisation of OBCs has got yet another extension.

  • The Commission, constituted nearly five years ago, has got 10 extensions so far, and now has until January 31 next year to submit its report.

What is sub-categorisation of OBCs?

  • The idea is to create sub-categories within the larger group of OBCs for the purpose of reservation.
  • OBCs are granted 27% reservation in jobs and education under the central government.
  • For OBCs, the debate arises out of the perception that only a few affluent communities among the over 2,600 included in the Central List of OBCs have secured a major part of the 27% reservation.
  • The argument for creating sub-categories within OBCs is that it would ensure “equitable distribution” of representation among all OBC communities.
  • It was to examine this that the Rohini Commission was constituted on October 2, 2017.

What is the Commission’s brief?

It was originally set up with three terms of reference:

  1. To examine the extent of inequitable distribution of benefits of reservation among the castes or communities included in the broad category of OBCs with reference to such classes included in the Central List.
  2. To work out the mechanism, criteria, norms and parameters in a scientific approach for sub-categorisation within such OBCs
  3. To take up the exercise of identifying the respective castes or communities or sub-castes or synonyms in the Central List of OBCs and classifying them into their respective sub-categories.

A fourth term of reference was added on January 22, 2020.

  1. To study the various entries in the Central List of OBCs and recommend correction of any repetitions, ambiguities, inconsistencies and errors of spelling or transcription.

What have its findings been so far?

  • In 2018, the Commission analysed the data of 3 lakh central jobs given under OBC quota over the preceding five years and OBC admissions to central higher education institutions
  • Over the preceding three years. The findings were: 97% of all jobs and educational seats have gone to just 25% of all sub-castes classified as OBCs; 24.95% of these jobs and seats have gone to just 10 OBC communities; 983 OBC communities — 37% of the total — have zero representation in jobs and educational institutions; 994 OBC sub-castes have a total representation of only 2.68% in recruitment and admissions.

Source: Indian Express


Dragon Fruit

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Geography

In News: Centre to promote dragon fruit cultivation in 50,000 hectares.

  • Following the footsteps of the Gujarat and Haryana Governments, the Centre has decided to promote the cultivation of dragon fruit, known as a super fruit for its health benefits.
  • The Centre feels that considering the cost effectiveness and global demand for the fruit due to its nutritional values, its cultivation can be expanded in India.
  • At present, the fruit is cultivated in 3,000 hectares; the plan is to increase cultivation to 50,000 hectares in five years.

Dragon Fruit

  • The dragon fruit – Hylocereus undatus is indigenous to the Americas.
  • It is a member of the cacti family.
  • It is also known as ‘Pitaya’, ‘Pitahaya’, strawberry pear, noblewoman and queen of the night throughout the world.

Features:

  • Its flowers are hermaphrodites (male and female organs in the same flower) in nature and open at night.
  • The plant sustains yield for more than 20 years, is high in nutraceutical and good for value-added processing industries.
  • It is a rich source of vitamins and minerals.

Climatic Condition:

  • It is hardy and grows in diverse climatic conditions with varied soils, especially in the semi-arid and arid regions of India.

Popularity in India:

  • The dragon fruit was introduced to home gardens in India in the 1990s.
  • The low maintenance and high profitability of dragon fruits has attracted the farming community throughout India.
  • The cost of cultivation is initially high. But the plant doesn’t need productive land; it gives maximum production from non-productive, less fertile area.
  • Presently Mizoram tops among the States that cultivate this fruit.
  • India is now importing about 15,491 tonnes of dragon fruits and has potential to match the production of China, where cultivation of the fruit takes place in 40,000 hectares, and Vietnam, which grows the fruit in 60,000 hectares.

Source: The Hindu

Previous Year Question

Q.1) Consider the following statements: (2021)

  1. Moringa (drumstick tree) is a leguminous evergreen tree.
  2. Tamarind tree is endemic to South Asia.
  3. In India, most of the tamarind is collected as minor forest produce.
  4. India exports tamarind and seeds of moringa.
  5. Seeds of moringa and tamarind can be used in the production of biofuels.

Which of the statements given above are correct?

  1. 1, 2, 4 and 5
  2. 3, 4 and 5
  3. 1, 3 and 4
  4. 1, 2, 3 and 5

Derecho

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Geography

In News: Some states of USA were hit by a storm system called a derecho.

  • As the storm hit, it turned the skies green.

What is a derecho?

  • A derecho, according to the US’s National Weather Service is a widespread, long-lived, straight-line windstorm that is associated with a band of rapidly moving showers or thunderstorms.
  • The name comes from the Spanish word ‘la derecha’ which means ‘straight’.
  • Straight-line storms are those in which thunderstorm winds have no rotation unlike a tornado. These storms travel hundreds of miles and cover a vast area.
  • Being a warm-weather phenomenon, a derecho generally – not always – occurs during summertime beginning May, with most hitting in June and July.
  • They are a rare occurrence as compared to other storm systems like tornadoes or hurricanes.
  • For a storm to be classified as a derecho it must have wind gusts of at least 93 km per hour; wind damage swath extending more than 400 km.

Why did the sky turn green during the derecho that hit US recently?

  • Severe thunderstorms result in a ‘green sky’ due to light interacting with the huge amount of water they hold.
  • It is believed that the big raindrops and hail scatter away all but the blue wavelengths due to which primarily blue light penetrates below the storm cloud.
  • This blue then combines with the red-yellow of the afternoon or the evening sun to produce green.

Different types of derechos

  • They fall into three categories – progressive, serial and hybrid.
  • A progressive derecho is associated with a short line of thunderstorms that may travel for hundreds of miles along a relatively narrow path. It is a summer phenomenon.
  • A serial derecho has an extensive squall line – wide and long – sweeping across a large area. It usually occurs during spring or fall.
  • Hybrid ones have the features of both progressive and serial derechos.

Where do derechos usually occur?

  • They mostly occur across central and eastern parts of the United States.
  • Derechos have also been documented elsewhere across the world. In 2010, Russia witnessed its first documented derecho. They have also swept through Germany and Finland, and more recently in Bulgaria and Poland.

Source: Indian Express

Previous Year Question

Q.1) Consider the following statements: (2020)

  1. Jet streams occur in the Northern Hemisphere only.
  2. Only some cyclones develop an eye.
  3. The temperature inside the eye of a cyclone is nearly 10°C lesser than that of the surroundings.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 2 only
  4. 1 and 3 only

Intergovernmental Committee of UNESCO’s 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Current Affairs

In News: India has been elected as a member of the Intergovernmental Committee of UNESCO’s 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) for the 2022-2026 cycle.

  • India has served as a member of the ICH Committee twice — from 2006 to 2010 and from 2014 to 2018.

Intergovernmental Committee

  • The Intergovernmental Committee of the 2003 Convention consists of 24 members and is elected in the General Assembly of the Convention
  • States Members to the Committee are elected for a term of four years.
  • The core functions of the Intergovernmental Committee include promoting the objectives of the Convention, providing guidance on best practices, and making recommendations on measures for the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage.
  • The Committee also examines requests submitted by States Parties for the inscription of intangible heritage on the Lists as well as proposals for programmes and projects.
  • Some of the priority areas that India will focus upon include fostering community participation, strengthening international cooperation through intangible heritage, promoting academic research on intangible cultural heritage, and aligning the work of the Convention with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
  • India ratified the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in September 2005.
  • With 14 inscriptions on the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, India also ranks high in the listing of intangible cultural heritage.
  • After the inscription of Durga Puja in 2021, India submitted the nomination for Garba of Gujarat to be discussed in 2023.

Source: Pib.gov

Previous Year Question

Q.1) With Reference to the “United Nations Credentials Committee”, consider the following statements: (2022)

  1. It is a committee set up by the UN Security Council and works under its supervision.
  2. It traditionally meets in March, June and September every year.
  3. It assesses the credentials of all UN members before submitting a report to the General Assembly for approval.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

  1. 3 only
  2. 1 and 3
  3. 2 and 3
  4. 1 and 2

Bharat NCAP (New Car Assessment Programme)

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Current Affairs
  • Mains – GS 2 (Governance)

In News: Recently, Union Minister for Road, Transport and Highways approved a Draft GSR (general statutory rules) Notification seeking comments on a proposal to introduce the Bharat New Car Assessment Program (Bharat-NCAP).

What is Bharat NCAP?

  • It is a new car safety assessment program which proposes a mechanism of awarding ‘Star Ratings’ to automobiles based upon their performance in crash tests.
  • Bharat NCAP standard is aligned with global benchmarks and it is beyond minimum regulatory requirements.

Bharat NCAP Rating:

  • The proposed Bharat NCAP assessment will allocate Star Ratings from 1 to 5 stars.
  • The testing of vehicles for this programme will be carried out at testing agencies, with the necessary infrastructure.
  • The voluntary Bharat NCAP would assign vehicles between one and five stars on parameters such as Adult Occupant Protection (AOP), Child Occupant Protection (COP) and Safety Assist Technologies (SAT).

Applicability:

  • It will be applicable on type approved motor vehicles of category M1 with gross vehicle weight less than 3.5 tonnes, manufactured or imported in the country.
  • M1 category motor vehicles are used for the carriage of passengers, comprising eight seats, in addition to driver’s seat.

Significance

  • The proposed move follows focus on zero tolerance for road accidents.
  • It is intended to increase the export-worthiness of vehicles and competition on safety parameters among manufacturers, as well as instil consumer confidence in their safety.
  • Bharat NCAP will prove to be a critical instrument in making our automobile industry Aatmanirbhar with the mission of making India the Number 1 automobile hub in the world.

Source: The Hindu


Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA)

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Syllabus:

  • Prelims – Polity

In News: Times Group’s Top Management Questioned by ED in FEMA Case

Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999

  • The legal framework for the administration of foreign exchange transactions in India is provided by the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999.
  • Under the FEMA, which came into force with effect from 1st June 2000, all transactions involving foreign exchange have been classified either as capital or current account transactions.
  • Current Account Transactions: All transactions undertaken by a resident that do not alter his / her assets or liabilities, including contingent liabilities, outside India are current account transactions.
  • Example: payment in connection with foreign trade, expenses in connection with foreign travel, education etc.
  • Capital Account Transactions: It includes those transactions which are undertaken by a resident of India such that his/her assets or liabilities outside India are altered (either increased or decreased).
  • Example: investment in foreign securities, acquisition of immovable property outside India etc.

Source: Indian Express


PMCARES Fund

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Syllabus:

  • Prelims – Current Affairs

In News: The Delhi High Court stayed a Central Information Commission (CIC) order directing the Income Tax Department to provide copies of all documents submitted by PM CARES Fund while applying for exemption under the Income Tax Act, and file notings granting the approval.

  • Hearing a petition by the department against the CIC order, the court took note of a submission that the question whether PM CARES Fund is a public authority is currently pending before a division bench of the court.

Background

  • The RTI applicant, had sought the information from I-T Department in May 2020.
  • While applicant’s RTI application was rejected by the authorities on the ground that PM CARES Fund is not covered under the RTI Act, the CIC said the issue regarding definition of public authority has been unnecessarily dragged into the matter, as the applicant has not filed the RTI application with PM Cares Fund but with the public authority itself.
  • It directed the I-T Department to disclose copies of documents submitted in the exemption application by PM CARES Fund, and of file notings granting the approval.
  • The I-T Department argued that the CIC has failed to consider the statutory bar contained in Section 138(1)(b) of IT Act, which provides the authorities the discretion whether information relating to any assessee should be disclosed in public interest or not.
  • I-T dept also stated additionally, there is a further bar, which states that his decision will be final and shall not be called into question in any court of law.
  • Wherever a statute provides for such a restriction, the courts have consistently held that the issue which is in the exclusive domain of the authority specified in the statute, the same issue cannot therefore be open to examination by another statutory authority under another legislation being the RTI Act 2005 herein.

Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund (PM CARES Fund)

  • Established in March 2020
  • It has been registered as a Public Charitable Trust.
  • The trust deed of PM CARES Fund has been registered under the Registration Act, 1908.
  • Prime Minister is the ex-officio Chairman of the PM CARES Fund and Minister of Defence, Minister of Home Affairs and Minister of Finance, Government of India are ex-officio Trustees of the Fund.
  • The Chairperson of the Board of Trustees shall have the power to nominate three trustees to the Board of Trustees who shall be eminent persons in the field of research, health, science, social work, law, public administration and philanthropy.

Funding:

  • The fund consists entirely of voluntary contributions from individuals/organisations and does not get any budgetary support.

Exemptions:

  • Donations to PM CARES Fund would qualify for 100% exemption under the Income Tax Act, 1961.
  • Donations to PM CARES Fund will also qualify to be counted as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) expenditure under the Companies Act, 2013
  • PM CARES Fund has also got exemption under the FCRA and a separate account for receiving foreign donations has been opened.

Source: Indian Express


Baba’s Explainer –  Non Fungible Tokens (NFTs)

Non Fungible Tokens (NFTs)

Syllabus

  • GS-3:Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life. 

Context: Non fungible tokens (NFTs) have, thanks to their ability to assign value to everything from art to music to a simple selfie, taken the world by storm.

  • The sales of NFTs surged $25 billion in 2021 as the crypto asset exploded in popularity, fuelled by the rising interest of celebrities and tech evangelists.
  • Where Bitcoin was hailed as the digital answer to currency, NFTs are now being touted as the digital answer to collectables, but plenty of sceptics fear they’re a bubble waiting to burst.
  • Also, With the two most valuable cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and Ethereum, hit hard in recent times, attention has returned to the newest type of crypto asset – NFTs.

Read Complete Details on Non Fungible Tokens (NFTs)


Daily Practice MCQs

Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) Consider the following statements about Mission Vatsalya Scheme

  1. It is a Central Sector Scheme 10 for the welfare and rehabilitation of children.
  2. Under the scheme funds to states will be approved through the Mission Vatsalya Project Approval Board (PAB)
  3. Mission Vatsalya Project Approval Board (PAB) will be chaired by Minister of Women and Child Development

Choose the incorrect statements:

  1. 1 and 3
  2. 1, 2 and 3
  3. 1 only
  4. 3 only

Q.2) Consider the following statements

  1. A derecho is a warm-weather phenomenon
  2. Derecho a widespread straight-line windstorm that is associated with a band of rapidly moving showers

Choose the correct statements:

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

Q.3) Consider the following statements about PM CARES Fund

  1. It has been registered as a Public Charitable Trust
  2. Home Minister is the ex-officio Chairman of the PM CARES Fund
  3. Donations to PM CARES Fund will also qualify to be counted as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
  4. PM CARES Fund has got exemption under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010.

Choose the correct code:

  1. 1, 2 and 3
  2. 1 and 3
  3. 2 and 4
  4. 1, 3 and 4

Comment the answers to the above questions in the comment section below!!

ANSWERS FOR ’8th JULY 2022 – Daily Practice MCQs’ will be updated along with tomorrow’s Daily Current Affairs.


ANSWERS FOR 7th JULY 2022 – Daily Practice MCQs

Answers- Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) – a

Q.2) – b

Q.3) – b

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