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DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 17th September 2022

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  • September 17, 2022
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Telangana State Integration Day

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Current Affairs (History)

Context: The diamond jubilee celebrations of the merger of Hyderabad State with Indian Union, being organised by the State government, commenced on 16th September .

Key Points:

  • The erstwhile Hyderabad State which also included the present parts of Karnataka and Maharashtra became independent with large number of people who fought for it laying down their lives.
  • The last Nizam Mir Osman Ali Khan had merged the Hyderabad State with Indian Union in spite of a section led by Qasim Rizvi opposing it by sending Rizvi to jail.

MUST READ:  Telangana Rebellion & Movement

Source:  The Hindu             

Previous Year Question

Q.1) With reference to Madanapalle of Andhra Pradesh, which one of the following statements is correct?

  1. Pingali Venkayya designed the tricolour Indian National Flag here.
  2. Pattabhi Sitaramaiah led the Quit India Movement of Andhra region from here.
  3. Rabindranath Tagore translated the National Anthem from Bengali to English here.
  4. Madame Blavatsky and Colonel Olcott set up headquarters of Theosophical Society first here.

Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRSs)

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Current Affairs (Governance)

About EMRSs:

  • EMRS started in the year 1997-98 to impart quality education to ST children in remote areas in order to enable them to avail of opportunities in high and professional educational courses and get employment in various sectors.
    • The schools focus not only on academic education but on the all-round development of the students.
  • At present, there are 384 functional schools spanned across the country established at par with Navodaya Vidyalaya with focus on special state-of-the-art facilities for preserving local art and culture besides providing training in sports and skill development.
  • They are administered by Ministry of Tribal Affairs.
  • The Tribal Affairs Ministry in May , 2021, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Microsoft to help Tribal schools such as Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) and Ashram Schools have digital transformation. The MoU was signed digitally in an online event ‘Empowering Youth for Success’.
  • Note: National Education Society for Tribal Students (NESTS), is an autonomous Society has been set up under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs to establish, endow, maintain, control, and manage the schools and to do all acts and things necessary for or conducive to the promotion of such schools. The NESTS shall function through an Executive Committee under the Chairmanship of Secretary, Tribal Affairs.

Other Initiatives Related to Scheduled Tribes:

  • TRIFED – is under the Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act, 1984 and the main purpose of TRIFED is to bring socio-economic development to the tribal people of India. The Ministry of Tribal Affairs administers the Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India (TRIFED).
  • Development of PVTGs.
  • Pradhan Mantri Van Dhan Yojana.
  • National Commission for Scheduled Tribes etc.

MUST READ:   Forest Rights Act, 2006

Source: The Hindu                          


T Madhav Rao: Administrator par excellence

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Current Affairs (Personalities)

About T Madhav Rao:

  • Raja Sir Tanjore Madhava Rao was an Indian statesman, civil servant, administrator, and politician who served as the Diwan of Travancore from 1857 to 1872, Indore from 1873 to 1875 and Baroda from 1875 to 1882.
  • Madhava Rao was born on 20 November 1828 in a prominent Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu. He was the nephew of the former Diwan of Travancore T. Venkata Rao and the son of another Ranga Rao.
  • British Liberal statesman Henry Fawcett called him “the Turgot of India“. In 1866, he was made a Knight Commander of the Order of the Star of India.
  • He brought a steam engine to the city and drove a vehicle with it, made telescopes with bamboo pipe and found value in the use of early projectors (magic lanterns) in educating children.
  • He triggered girl’s education in the city by sending his own daughter to the newly started Zenana Mission school.
  • He was senate member of Madras and Bombay Universities, was one of the early members of Indian National Congress.
  • He was a great follower of sociologist and political theorist Herbert Spencer.
  • Minor Hints and Hints on the Training of Native Children authored by Dewan Madhava Rao and biographies on him by Sakha Rama Rayar Lakshmana Rayar and Kulathu Iyer bring to light some of the rare facets of his personality.

Administrative Reforms:

  • His administrative reforms include strengthening the Public Works department by appointing Mr. Greenway as Civil Engineer in 1860.
  • The telegraph office was started and the anchal (postal) department, which was so far carrying only official letters, was opened to the general public.
  • The Education Department was formalised with the appointment of Sanakra Subba Ayyar as Director.
  • In his final administration report, he demonstrated his vision of development as “ to provide every subject within a couple of hours of journey, the advantages of a Doctor, a School Master, a Judge, a Magistrate, a Registering Officer and a Postmaster”.
  • Historian Malayinkeezhu Gopalakrishnan rates the foremost contribution of Madhava Rao as ‘Pandarapatta Vilambaram, in which Government land that was given on lease for farming were given to the land holders for a nominal price.
    • This had magical effect on Kerala society as the youth who aspired for modern education sold the land and pursued education, triggering a renaissance.

Titles and awards

  • Fellow of the Madras University- 1862
  • Knight Commander of the Star of India- 1866
  • Title of Rajah- 1868

Source: Indian Express               


Cheetahs and others: know the 7 big cats

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Environment and Ecology

Context:

The cheetah, which is being re-introduced to India from Africa, is not to be confused with the leopard, which too has spots that look somewhat similar.

The following are the list of members of the ‘cat’ genus Panthera, Puma, and Acinonyx.

Panthera

  • This is the genus of large wild cats that can roar, but can’t purr.
  • Among them, the lion, the leopard, and the jaguar are more closely related, while the other strand has the tiger and the snow leopard.
  • The snow leopard is an exception to the rest of the group in that it can’t roar.
  1. Tiger (Panthera Tigris)
  • Size: 75-300 kg | IUCN Status: Endangered

  • It is national animal of India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, and South Korea.
  • It is primarily a forest animal; they range from the Siberian taiga to the Sunderban delta.
  • Tiger is the largest of all wild cats and also the earliest Panthera member to exist.
  • As per the census released in December 2021, the population of tigers in India is 2,967, hosting approximately two-thirds of the world’s tigers in less than one-fourth of the global range.
  • Madhya Pradesh has largest population of Tigers (526), followed by Karnataka (524) according to latest report by MoEF&CC.
  1. Lion (Panthera Leo)
  • Size: 100-250 kg | IUCN Status: African lion: Vulnerable, Asiatic Lion: Endangered
  • Native to Africa and Asia, the lion is the most social cat, and lives in groups called prides.
  • They prefer open forests such as scrubland, and adult males have a prominent mane.
  • There are approximately 600 Asiatic lions left in the Gir Forest of Western India, their last remaining natural habitat.

  • The lion is arguably the most widely recognised animal symbol in human culture be it the Ashoka pillar in Sarnath, the main entrance to Buckingham Palace, or the 20th Century Fox and MGM logo.
  1. Jaguar (Panthera Onca)
  • Size: 50-110 kg | IUCN Status: Near Threatened

  • The largest cat in the Americas, the Jaguar has the strongest bite force of all wild cats, enabling it to bite directly through the skull of its prey.
  • Melanistic (black) Jaguars are common and are often called black panthers. Jaguar was a powerful motif in the Mayan and Aztec civilisations.
  1. Leopard (Panthera Pardus)
  • Size: 30-90 kg | IUCN Status: Vulnerable
  • Similar in appearance to the Jaguar with a rosette patterned coat, the leopard was described by Jim Corbett as “the most beautiful of all animals” for its “grace of movement and beauty of colouring”.

  • The most adaptable of all big cats, they occupy diverse habitats at all altitudes across Africa and Asia. Like black jaguars, melanistic leopards are called black panthers.
  • In some African cultures, leopards are considered to be better hunters than lions.
  1. Snow leopard (Panthera Uncia)
  • Size: 25-55 kg | IUCN Status: Vulnerable

  • The ghost of the mountains, this Smokey-grey cat lives above the snow line in Central and South Asia.
  • The most elusive of all big cats, it cannot roar, and has the longest tail of them all — which comes in handy for balance while hunting along the cliffs, and also gives warmth when wrapped around the body.
  • The snow leopard is the state animal of Ladakh and Himachal Pradesh.
  1. Puma Closely related to the domestic cat, this genus has only one extant species, the cougar. Cougar (Puma concolor)
  • Size: 40-100 kg | IUCN Status: Least Concern

  • The cougar is the second-largest cat in the Americas. (The Jaguar is the largest.)
  • Cougars are also called ‘mountain lion’ and ‘panther’ across their range from the Canadian Yukon to the Southern Andes. Concolor is Latin for “of uniform colour”. The Incas designed the city of Cusco in the shape of a cougar.
  1. Acinonyx : This is a unique genus within the cat family, with only one living member, the cheetah.

Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)

  • Size: 20-70 kg | IUCN Status: Vulnerable

  • The fastest land mammal, the cheetah is the only cat without retractable claws — the grip helps it accelerate faster than any sports car (0-100 km/hr in 3 seconds).
  • Cheetahs are not aggressive towards humans, and they have been tamed since the Sumerian era. They don’t breed well in captivity — picky females play hard to get.

Source:  Indian Express 

Previous Year Questions

Q.1) Which of the following is not a bird? (2022)

  1. Golden Mahseer
  2. Indian Nightjar
  3. Spoonbill
  4. White Ibis

Q.2) Consider the following animals   (2021)

  1. Hedgehog
  2. Marmot
  3. Pangolin

To reduce the chance of being captured by predators, which of the above organisms rolls up/roll up and protects/protect its/their vulnerable parts?

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

Q.3) Which one of the following protected areas is well-known for the conservation of a sub-species of the Indian swamp deer (Barasingha) that thrives well on hard ground and is exclusively graminivorous? (2020)

  1. Kanha National Park
  2. Manas National Park
  3. Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary
  4. Tal Chhapar Wildlife Sanctuary

Q.4) Among the following Tiger Reserves, which one has the largest area under “Critical Tiger Habitat”? (2019)

  1. Corbett
  2. Ranthambore
  3. Nagarjunsagar-Srisailam
  4. Sundarbans

Remember Periyar with a pledge to embrace dissent

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – History (Personalities)
  • Mains – Indian History

Context: We celebrate Periyar E.V. Ramasamy’s birth anniversary (September 17) as Social Justice Day.

  • The World Day of Social Justice is an international day recognizing the need to promote social justice, which includes efforts to tackle issues such as poverty, exclusion, gender inequality, unemployment, human rights, and social protections. It is celebrated on 20th February every year, different from India’s case.

About Periyar:

  • Born E.V. Ramaswamy Naicker in 1879 in Erode district of Tamil Nadu (TN). He quarrelled with Gandhi over the question of separate dining for Brahmin and non-Brahmin students in Congress Party.
  • He resigned from the party in 1925, and associated himself with the Justice Party and the Self Respect Movement, which opposed the dominance of Brahmins in social life, especially the bureaucracy.
  • Periyar’s fame spread beyond the Tamil region during the Vaikom Satyagraha of 1924, a mass movement to demand that lower caste persons be given the right to use a public path in front of the famous Vaikom temple. He would later be referred to as Vaikom Veerar (Hero of Vaikom).
  • In the 1940s, Periyar launched a political party, Dravidar Kazhagam (DK), which espoused an independent Dravida Nadu comprising Tamil, Malayalam, Telugu, and Kannada speakers.
  • Periyar died in 1973 at the age of 94. Over the years, Periyar is revered as Thanthai Periyar, the father figure of modern Tamil Nadu.

About Self Respect Movement :

  • Self-Respect Movement was a dynamic social movement aimed at destroying the contemporary Hindu social order in its totality and creating a new, rational society without caste, religion, and God.
  • The movement was started in Tamil Nadu in 1925.
    • It was an egalitarian movement that propagated the ideologies of breaking down of the Brahminical hegemony, equal rights for the backward classes and women in the society and revitalization of the Dravidian languages like Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, and Malayalam.

Social justice and Periyar:

  • Social justice is the view that everyone deserves equal economic, political, and social rights and opportunities. Social workers aim to open the doors of access and opportunity for everyone, particularly those in greatest need.
  • Social justice and rationality define “the best possible version of truth” for a large majority of people. (The quality of being based on or in accordance with reason or logic.)

Foundation of rationalism :

  • Periyar’s vision was about inclusive growth and freedom of individuals. He presented rationalism as a solid foundation for thinking along these lines. He said, “Wisdom lies in thinking. The spearhead of thinking is rationalism.”
  • Periyar said, “Any opposition not based on rationalism or science or experience, will one day or other, reveal the fraud, selfishness, lies, and conspiracies.” We can posit this with regard to the extreme-right activities we see happening across the country and sometimes abroad too.
  • All the reforms he shared with people could not be implemented at the time because of the searing discussions they led to. One such reform measure he felt was needed to change the caste dynamic in society was ‘Priesthood for all castes’.

Relevance of Periyar in current times:

  • On one level, a few people are benefiting greatly from the rampant rise of acts of violence against minorities. These people have such an external defence mechanism that it becomes easy for them to use incendiary rhetoric and get away with it.
  • The discussion that Periyar initiated continues to-date, and is the antithesis to this manner of societal regression.
    • Periyar proclaimed that he would always stand with the oppressed in the fight against oppressors and that his enemy was oppression.
  • Spaces for debate are shrinking all over the world. Majoritarianism and populism are not enabling sensible conversations in any public sphere.
    • At such a time, Periyar stands as a stellar precedent, reminding us of a time when people with opposing ideas were invited to the stage for a debate.

Conclusion:

As a part of creating a society with social justice at its core, let us pledge to create open spaces for discussions in our communities. If need be, let us spearhead such activities on whatever scale. Only these spaces have the potential of creating a positive change at an ideological level.

Source: The Hindu

Previous Year Questions

Q.1) Who among the following is associated with ‘Songs from Prison’, a translation of ancient Indian religious lyrics in English?  (2021)

  1. Bal Gangadhar Tilak
  2. Jawaharlal Nehru
  3. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi
  4. Sarojini Naidu

Q.2) Who among the following was associated as Secretary with Hindu Female School which later came to be known as Bethune Female School? (2021)

  1. Annie Besant
  2. Debandranath Tagore
  3. Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar
  4. Sarojini Naidu

Q.3) Consider the following pairs:                (2019)

Movement/Organization                               Leader

  1. All India Anti-Untouchability     League Mahatma Gandhi
  2. All India Kisan Sabha                   Swami Sahajanand Saraswati
  3. Self-Respect Movement               V. Ramaswami Naicker

Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?

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

The consequences of declining fertility

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Syllabus

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

Context: Though the global population, in terms of numbers, has been steadily increasing — some reports suggest that it could grow to around 8.5 billion in 2030 — there is an interesting aspect to this: average global fertility has been consistently declining over the past 70 years.

  • The average number of children per woman in the reproductive age group has declined by 50%, from an average of 5 children per woman in 1951 to 2.4 children in 2020, according to the World Population Prospects (WPP) 2022 by the United Nations population estimates and projections, and prepared by the Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat (UN-DESA).

WPP 2022 Findings Related to India :

  • India’s growth rate stood at 3 % in 1972, which has dropped down to less than 1% now.
  • In this period, the Total Fertility Rate (TFR) has come down from about 5.4 to less than 2.1 now.
    • This means that Indian has attained the Replacement Level Fertility (RLF) Rate, at which a population exactly replaces itself from one generation to the next.

Reasons for changing trend of population:

  • This is the result of speeding up the social phenomenon of demographic transition.
  • Demographic transition refers to the historical shift from high birth rates and high death rates in societies with minimal technology, education (especially of women) and economic development, to low birth rates and low death rates in societies with advanced technology, education, and economic development, as well as the stages between these two scenarios.
  • Poorer countries seem to be speeding up the transition ladder a lot faster than the richer ones.
  • The newly released World Population Prospectus also notes that the global fertility rate fell from three in 1990 to 2.3 in 2021. Sub-Saharan African countries are expected to contribute more than half the population growth after 2050 and grow through 2100. Most advanced economies have their fertility rate below the replacement rate of 2.1.

Indian scenario:

  • The Indian setting is no different, with its fertility rate falling below the replacement level for the first time to 2.0 in 2021, according to the latest National Family Health Survey 2021 (NFHS- 5). The rate has dipped 10% in just five years.
  • At the time of Independence, India’s fertility rate (TFR) was 6 per woman, and it had taken 25 years to reach 5, with the government launching the first ever family planning programme in the world in 1952.
  • As reported by the NFHS 2021, only five States have a fertility rate above the replacement rate: Bihar, Meghalaya, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Manipur.

Advantages of having low fertility rates:

  • Lower fertility impacts women’s education positively, which in turn lowers the fertility of the next generations.
    • With better infrastructure development, better health care, and education, fertility drops and income rises.
  • Demographic Dividend– The spiral of lower fertility leads to a window of time when the ratio of the working-age population is higher than that of the dependent age groups.
    • This high proportion of people in the workforce boosts income and investment, given the higher level of saving due to lower dependence.
  • The falling fertility rate will also lead to lower pressure on land, water and other resources and would also contribute to achieving environmental goals.

However, A fall in fertility rate beyond replacement level  would have a negative effect on the proportion of the working population:

  • TFR < RLF will negatively affect output in an economy.
    • A rise in education and independence among women would enhance their labour participation, which could arrest the fall in labour participation up to a limit.
  • An influx of immigrants from countries with higher population growth could also play a positive part but this would change local demography, leading to political unrest.
    • A paper, “The End of Economic Growth? Unintended Consequences of a Declining Population”, by Stanford economist argues that falling fertility could diminish the creative capacity of humankind. He points to the need for ideas in technological advancement and productivity boost, which even artificial intelligence is still not capable of.
  • An ageing population will also affect global interest rates negatively as the share of people over 50 years will form almost 40% of the population by 2100.
    • In their book The Great Demographic Reversal, economists explain how falling fertility will have a positive effect on inflation through higher wages due to lower labour supply and a change in the nature of unemployment inflation trade-off, as now low inflation can be maintained even with low unemployment.

Way forward: Dealing with fertility decline

  • The fall in fertility around the globe has been a result of decades of demographic process, and hence needs scientific and sustainable policies for mitigation.
  • The advancement in health care and better nutrition around the world have increased the life expectancy and productivity of older citizens.
  • Countries across the globe are experimenting with policies to boost fertility.
    • Germany found success in boosting births through liberal labour laws, allowing more parental leave and benefits.
    • Denmark offers state-funded IVF for women below 40 years, and Hungary recently nationalised IVF clinics.
    • Poland gives out monthly cash payments to parents having more than two children, whereas Russia makes a one-time payment to parents when their second child is born.
  • Liberal labour reforms, encouraging higher female labour force participation rate, and a higher focus on nutrition and health would ensure sustained labour supply and output despite lower fertility.

Source: The Hindu                    

Previous Year Question

Q.1) Which of the following organizations brings out the publication known as ‘World Economic Outlook’? (2014)

  1. The International Monetary Fund
  2. The United Nations Development Programme
  3. The World Economic Forum
  4. The World Bank

Baba’s Explainer –Urban Flooding

Urban Flooding

Syllabus

  • GS-1: Urbanization, their problems and their remedies
  • GS-3: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation

Context: Parts of Bengaluru, India’s IT and startup capital, have been facing unprecedented floods in the recent days. This is not the first instance of urban flooding in India. In fact, urban flooding is becoming increasingly common in many parts of the country with this monsoon season itself seeing many such instances in the states of Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh.

  • The fact that such instances are spreading to more cities and happening with greater frequency, suggests that something is broken in our response to such events.
  • The repeated and growing problems of urban floods is a systemic problem and the root cause of this is prioritising economic gains over everything else.

Read Complete Details on Urban Flooding


Daily Practice MCQs

Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) With reference to Indian history, Erode Venkatappa Ramasamy/Periyar associated with which of the following:

  1. Self-respect movement
  2. Vaikom satyagraha
  3. Dravidar Kazhagam
  4. Justice Party

Select the correct option using the code given below:

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

Q.2) World Population Prospects (WPP) is a report published by

  1. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
  2. UN Population Division
  3. United Nations Statistics Division
  4. Population Council (NGO)

Q.3) Consider the following statements, with respect to Asiatic Lion

  1. Asiatic lion is categorized as Critically Endangered in the IUCN Red List.
  2. There is significant rise in population of Asiatic lions in last five years.
  3. Gir forest in Gujarat is the only natural habitat of the Asiatic lion.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct ?

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

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

ANSWERS FOR ’17th September 2022 – Daily Practice MCQs’ will be updated along with tomorrow’s Daily Current Affairs.


ANSWERS FOR 16th September – Daily Practice MCQs

Answers- Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) – d

Q.2) – a

Q.3) – b

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