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DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 26th September 2022

  • IASbaba
  • September 26, 2022
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(PRELIMS & MAINS Focus)


Elephant Conservation

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Environment

Context: Tamil Nadu Forest officials learn the ‘language of elephants’, thanks to calf rescue missions. Over the last one year, the department has successfully reunited three elephant calves that got separated from their herds in Nilgiris district of Tamil Nadu.

Asian Elephants and African Elephants:

About African Elephants:

  • African Savanna (or bush) elephant
    • IUCN Red List: Endangered
  • African Forest Elephants
    • IUCN Red List: Critically Endangered
  • Note: Previously, IUCN listed both African elephants as “vulnerable”. But now it has opted to list them separately. It is after genetic evidence has proved that both are different species.
  • Habitat: The distribution of African elephants is throughout the savannas of sub-Saharan Africa and the rainforests of Central and West Africa.
  • African Savanna (or bush) elephant: They are larger animals that roam the plains of sub-Saharan Africa.
  • African Forest Elephants: They are smaller animals that live in the forests of Central and West Africa.

Characteristics:

  • African elephants are the largest land animals on Earth. They are slightly larger than Asian Elephants and can be identified by their larger ears. (Asian elephants have smaller, rounded ears)
  • Elephants are matriarchal. It means they live in female-led groups. The matriarch is usually the biggest and oldest.
  • Keystone Species: African elephants are keystone species, i.e., they play a critical role in their ecosystem. They are also known as “ecosystem engineers” as they shape their habitat in many ways.

About Asian Elephants:

The Asian elephant is the largest land mammal on the Asian continent. They inhabit dry to wet forest and grassland habitats in 13 range countries spanning South and Southeast Asia.

IUCN Red List: Endangered

CITES: Appendix I.

Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972: Schedule I.

Elephant Reserves in India:

  • The Indian elephant Elephas maximus occurs in the central and southern Western Ghats, North-east India, eastern India, and northern India and in some parts of southern peninsular India.
  • It occurs in 16 of the 28 states in the country and is showing an increasing trend across its distributional range.
  • Its population in 2007 was estimated to be in the range from 27,657 to 27,682, whereas in 2012 the population was estimated to be between 27,785 and 31,368.
  • Karnataka has highest elephant population followed by Kerala, according to recent report of MoEF&CC.

PROJECT ELEPHANT : was launched by the Government of India in the year 1992 as a Centrally Sponsored Scheme with following objectives:

  1. To protect elephants, their habitat & corridors
  2. To address issues of man-animal conflict
  3. Welfare of captive elephants
  • The Project is being mainly implemented in 16 States / UTs , viz. Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal.
  • The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change provides the financial and technical support to major elephant range states in the country through Project Elephant.

Source: The Hindu                 

Previous Year Questions

Q.1) With reference to Indian laws about wildlife protection, consider the following statements :

  1. Wild animals are the sole property of the government.
  2. When a wild animal is declared protected, such animal is entitled for equal protection whether it is found in protected areas or outside.
  3. Apprehension of a protected wild animal becoming a danger to human life is sufficient ground for its capture or killing.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct? (2022)

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

Q.2) With reference to Indian elephants, consider the following statements:

  1. The leader of an elephant group is a female
  2. The maximum gestation period can be 22 months
  3. An elephant can normally go on calving till the age of 40 years only
  4. Among the States in India, the highest elephant population is in Kerala

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?  (2020)

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

Q.3) Consider the following statements:

  1. Asiatic lion is naturally found in India only
  2. Double-humped camel is naturally found in India only
  3. One-horned rhinoceros is naturally found in India only

Which of the statements given above is/are correct? (2020)

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

Ambedkar Tourist Circuit

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Syllabus

  • Prelims: Modern India

In News: The Central government has announced a special tourist circuit encompassing five key sites associated with Dr. B.R. Ambedkar

The Five Key Sites – The “Panchateerths”

  • Mhow: His Birthplace
  • Nagpur: Where he studied
  • London: Where he resided and studied
  • Delhi: Where he breathed his last
  • Mumbai: Where he was cremated

Other sites of relevance

  • Raigarh, Maharashtra: Where Dr. Ambedkar led the Mahad Satyagraha, one of the greatest incidents of expression of freedom for Dalits
    • On March 20, 1927
    • To allow untouchables to use water in a public tank in Mahad
  • Pune, Maharashtra: Where he held the first negotiations with Mahatma Gandhi in Yerwada jail
    • On a separate electorate for depressed classes in the legislature of British India in 1932.
    • The result was the Poona Pact signed by Dr. Ambedkar on behalf of the depressed classes and by Madan Mohan Malviya on behalf of upper caste Hindus.
  • Kolhapur, Maharashtra: In March 1920, another legendary social reformer, Chatrapati Shahuji Maharaj, declared Dr. Ambedkar as the true leader of the oppressed classes in India. March 2020 marked the centenary year of this event.
  • Sri Lanka: Where he attended a Buddhist conclave that is said to have influenced him to convert to Buddhism.

MUST READ: Bharat Ratna Dr. B.R. Ambedkar-The man and His Vision

Source: The Hindu                       


Status of Cannabis

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Syllabus

  • GS Prelims and GS-II – Health

In News: In September last year, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) said it was reviewing the status of cannabis, which is prohibited in competition. This followed the positive test of USA’s sprinting star Sha ‘Carri Richardson during the US Olympic Track and Field trials in June. She was banned and missed the Olympics. However, recently WADA said the recreational drug would remain on its list.

Cannabis and Marijuana

  • Cannabis is sourced from the cannabis sativa plant.
  • There are over 500 chemical substances in the plant but the one on Wada’s prohibited list is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
  • THC gives users of marijuana a high. So, cannabis in Wada’s books is marijuana, the chemical in which is THC.

The Ban of Cannabis

  • Cannabis is banned only in-competition.
  • This means that an athlete faces a risk of getting banned only for a positive test from a sample collected during a competition.
  • For example, an athlete can smoke marijuana in the off-season and test positive but is unlikely to be banned.
  • From 2021 onwards, a positive test for cannabis can result in as short a ban as one month, according to Wada.
  • For a reduced ban; down from two to four years earlier, athletes must prove that the use of cannabis was before entering a competition, which means the athlete did not intend to experience its effects while competing.

Review by WADA Code

  • Under the Wada code, cannabis is defined as a ‘substance of abuse’.
  • Wada says the current limit of 150 nanograms per millilitre in urine will be found in athletes who are frequent users and are impaired because of the effects of cannabis. The threshold limit in 2013 was just 15 ng/ml.
  • Potential to enhance performance, health risk to athletes and the spirit of the sport are the criteria these experts looked at. A substance needs to meet two of these three criteria to be included in the prohibited list.
  • Wada says that use of cannabis violates the spirit of the sport but didn’t specify which of the other two criteria the recreational drug met.

Is cannabis performance enhancing in sports?

  • Cannabis is known to delay fatigue, mask pain and improve concentration but at the same time can increase heartbeat which is not good
  • Cannabis, like all drugs, has its pros and cons but it is still unclear if it can help an athlete. There are studies that show it can reduce motor movement.

Evidence of an increasing number of runners using cannabis during training was documented in the book Runners’ High by Josiah Hesse. A research paper titled ‘Cannabis in sport, anti-doping perspective’ says

  • There are benefits for athletes such as ‘improved oxygenation to tissues, improvement of vision for goalkeepers, and muscle relaxation.
  • Cannabis can also reduce anxiety, fear, and tension.
  • Athletes under the influence of cannabis indicate that their thoughts flow more easily and their decision-making and creativity is enhanced; others claim that cannabis improves their concentration or reduces pain.
  • Health professionals have encountered athletes including gymnasts, divers, football players and basketball players who claim smoking cannabis before play helps them to focus better.

World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) 

  • A foundation initiated by the International Olympic Committee based in Canada to promote, coordinate, and monitor the fight against drugs in sports. \
  • Set up on 10 November 1999 in Lausanne, Switzerland, as a result of what was called the “Declaration of Lausanne”
  • Headquarters: In Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
  • The agency’s key activities include scientific research, education, development of anti-doping capacities, and monitoring of the World Anti-Doping Code, whose provisions are enforced by the UNESCO International Convention Against Doping in Sport.
  • It delegates work in individual countries to Regional and National Anti-Doping Organizations (RADOs and NADOs) and mandates that these organisations are compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code.

Source:  Indian Express           


FSSAI releases draft notification on star rating for packaged food

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Current Affairs

In News: The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India has issued a draft notification on front-of-package labelling, which proposes “Indian Nutrition Rating” (INR) modelled on the health star-rating system.

  • Requires packaged food to display the prescribed format of INR by assigning a rating from 1/2 star (least healthy) to five stars (healthiest).
  • The INR is to be calculated on the basis of the contribution of energy, saturated fat, total sugar, sodium, and the positive nutrients per 100 gm of solid food or 100 ml of liquid food.
  • The star assigned to a product “shall be displayed close in proximity to the name or brand name of the product on front of pack,” says the draft notification.
  • Certain food products such as milk and milk-based products, egg-based desserts, infant formula, salads and sandwich spreads and alcoholic beverages have been exempted.

Public health experts have been opposed to the health-star rating system

  • According to them, it gives a “health halo” because of its positive connotation making it harder to identify harmful products.
  • They instead recommend warning labels such as an octagonal “stop” symbol which global studies have shown is the only format that has led to a positive impact on food and beverage purchases forcing the industry
    • For example, in Chile, to reformulate their products and remove major amounts of sugar and salt.

About Food Safety and Standards Authority of India

  • It is an autonomous statutory body established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 (FSS Act).
  • The Act aims to establish a single reference point for all matters relating to food safety and standards, by moving from multi- level, multi-departmental control to a single line of command.
  • Ministry: Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.
  • It comprises a chairperson and twenty-two members out of which one – third are to be women. The Chairperson of FSSAI is appointed by the Central Government.
  • The primary responsibility for enforcement is largely with the State Food Safety Commissioners

Source:  The Hindu                 


Flex Fuel Technology

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Science & Technology

In News: India’s first ‘flex fuel’ car, a Toyota sedan has been developed as part of a new pilot. The nationwide pilot has been initiated as part of a government-led push to car – makers for adopting alternative fuels and to replicate the commercial deployment of this particular technology in other markets such as Brazil, Canada, and the US.

  • There are over 21 million flex fuel vehicles in the United States
  • Brazil is the leader in this segment.

The Mechanics of Flex Fuel Technology:

  • A flex fuel, or flexible fuel, vehicle has an internal combustion engine (ICE), but unlike a regular petrol or diesel vehicle, this can run on more than one type of fuel, or even a mixture of fuels.
  • The ICE can use a blend of petrol and ethanol or methanol and can also run on 100 per cent petrol or ethanol as well.
  • This is made possible by equipping the engine with a fuel mix sensor and an engine control module (ECM) programming that senses and automatically adjusts for any ratio of designated fuels.
  • Flex fuel vehicles have one fuel system, and most components are the same as those found in a conventional petrol-only car.
  • Modifications such as special ethanol-compatible components are required to adjust to the different chemical properties and energy content in ethanol or methanol. The ECM is also calibrated to accommodate the higher oxygen content of ethanol.

 

Significance:

  • The use of ethanol blending sharply lowers harmful pollutants such as carbon monoxide, sulphur, and carbon and nitrogen oxides.
  • It will deleverage the country’s dependence on oil imports for transportation
  • Many flex fuel vehicles have improved acceleration performance when operating on higher ethanol blends.

Concerns:

  • It marginally decreases fuel efficiency when using ethanol for motive power.
  • Over 90% of ethanol produced in the country, came from sugarcane alone and sugarcane production is usually very water-intensive.
  • Further, since sugarcane is a politically important crop, there is a perceived political angle to the ethanol/methanol blending push.

About ethanol production in India:

  • Currently, around 9.5% ethanol blending with petrol has been achieved in fuel dispensed in pumps in most metros and it is likely that the targeted 10 per cent ethanol blending will be achieved by November 2022. But this is slated for a major bump up, with the government’s 2025 target of 20 per cent blending of ethanol in petrol envisaged in its National Biofuel Policy 2018.

Source: The New Indian Express               


Archaeological Survey of India

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – History and Art and Culture

Context: Archeological Survey of India has discovered 12000-year-old artifacts at the Vadakkupattu village in Tamil Nadu.

Key Findings:

  • Mesolithic Period: ASI discovered hand axes, scrappers, cleavers, and choppers from the Mesolithic period. They were recovered 75 cm from beneath the surface.
  • Sangam Era: They discovered Sangam era (almost 2,000 years ago) artefacts including rouletted pottery, Roman amphora sherds, and glass beads suggesting active commerce with Rome.
  • Early and Later Pallavas: They discovered sculptures ranging from the early Pallava period (275 CE) to the late Pallavas on the floor inside the surrounding space (897 CE).

Significance of the findings:

  • With these discoveries, Vadakkupattu village site has now become a culturally and archaeologically important site.

Archaeological Survey of India:

  • The ASI is the premier organization for the archaeological researches and protection of the cultural heritage of the country.
  • The prime objection of ASI is to maintain the archaeological sites, ancient monuments, and remains of national importance.
  • Headquarters: New Delhi.
  • Established: 1861 by Alexander Cunningham.
  • It regulates all archaeological activities as per the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958.
  • It functions under the aegis of the Union Ministry of Culture.
  • It also regulates Antiquities and Art Treasure Act, 1972.

Source: Times of India           

Previous Year Questions

Q.1) Who among the following rulers advised his subjects through this inscription? (2020)

“Whosoever praises his religious sect or blames other sects out of excessive devotion to his own sect, with the view of glorifying his own sect, he rather injures his own sect very severely.”

  1. Ashoka
  2. Samudragupta
  3. Harshavardhana
  4. Krishnadeva Raya

Q.2) Which one of the following is not a Harappan site? (2018)

  1. Chanhudaro
  2. Kot Diji
  3. Sohgaura
  4. Desalpur

Dragonflies

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Environment and Ecology

Context: A survey of dragonflies and damselflies at Delhi’s biodiversity parks indicates that low rainfall this year may have impacted their life cycles and numbers.

In a week-long survey that concluded recently, a total of 25 species of dragonflies and damselflies were recorded across the biodiversity parks and the Kamla Nehru Ridge.

  • On August 18 every year, the World-Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-India) and the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) commemorates Dragonfly Day in New Delhi and its surrounding areas.

What are Dragonflies?

  • It is an aerial predator insect most commonly found near freshwater habitats throughout most of the world.
  • Their distinctive colors make them look beautiful. This makes them valuable subjects for research on insect behavior, both for ecology and art.
  • Habitat:
    • Most species of dragonflies live in the tropics and particularly in the rainforests.
  • Significance:
    • Dragonflies are important to their environments both as predators (particularly of mosquitos) and as prey to birds and fish. Because these insects require stable oxygen levels and clean water, scientists consider them reliable bioindicators of the health of an ecosystem.
    • Dragonflies are essential bio-indicators of an area’s ecological health. Because they eat mosquitoes and other insects that transmit life-threatening diseases like Malaria and Dengue Fever.
  • Threats:
    • The rapid destruction of their habitat poses a direct threat to their survival making their conservation urgent.

Key Findings of the survey:

  • The Kamla Nehru Ridge recorded the maximum number of species – 25.
  • The Yamuna Biodiversity Park recorded 23 species, a little less than the 25 species recorded in 2018.
  • In terms of the number of individuals recorded, the Kalindi Biodiversity Park recorded the highest number at 3,348, followed by the Aravalli Biodiversity Park where 555 individuals were counted.
  • The Neela Hauz biodiversity park also recorded a fewer number of species this year – just six – as compared to 2018, when nine species were counted.
  • Species that were recorded include the Scarlet Skimmer, Picture Wing dragonfly and the Granite Ghost along with dragons mentioned below.(in pictures)

Recent other discoveries of Dragonflies:

  • Recently, Dragonfly enthusiasts have recorded the presence of a rare dragonfly species named “Spiny Horntail” that was not seen in Kerala until now.
    • The Western Ghats are home to this species, which was discovered in Maharashtra earlier this year.

Golden dartlet                                                                                                       

Ditch jewel

Pied paddy skimmer                                               

   Spiny horntail

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) Certain species of which one of the following organisms are well known as cultivators of

fungi? (2022)

  1. Ant
  2. Cockroach
  3. Crab
  4. Spider

Q.3) Which one of the following is a filter feeder? (2021)

  1. Catfish
  2. Octopus
  3. Oyster
  4. Pelican

Banking System Liquidity

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – Economy
  • Mains – GS 3 (Economy)

Context:

  • Recently, For the first time since May 2019, the banking system liquidity situation turned into a deficit mode in September, 2022, by comparison, the liquidity surplus was to the tune of Rs 8 lakh crore in November 2021.
  • As the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) was providing liquidity support to the economy, which was dealing with the after-effects of the Covid pandemic.

In this context let us know about Banking system liquidity:

What is banking system liquidity?

  • Liquidity in the banking system refers to readily available cash that banks need to meet short-term business and financial needs.
  • On a given day, if the banking system is a net borrower from the RBI under Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF), the system liquidity can be said to be in deficit and if the banking system is a net lender to the RBI, the system liquidity can be said to be in surplus.
    • The LAF refers to the RBI’s operations through which it injects or absorbs liquidity into or from the banking system.

What has triggered present banking liquidity deficit?

  • Economists say that there are various factors over the last few months that have led to the current situation.
  • If an improvement in demand for credit has led to the same, the recent advance tax outflow has further aggravated the situation.
  • Besides, there is the continuous intervention of the RBI to counter the fall in the rupee against the US dollar.
  • As per the, chief economist, India Ratings.
    • “The deficit in the liquidity situation has been caused by an uptick in the bank credit, advance tax payments by corporates, intervention of the RBI into the forex market, and also incremental deposit growth not keeping pace with credit demand.”

Latest data by RBI:

  • The outstanding bank credit stood at Rs 124.58 lakh crore in August 26, 2022 and has increased by 4.77% (Rs 5.7 lakh crore) from Rs 118.9 lakh crore in March 25, 2022.
  • However, deposit growth was just 3.21% (Rs 5.3 lakh crore) at Rs 169.94 lakh crore in August 26, 2022, from Rs 164.65 lakh crore in March 25, 2022.

How can a tight liquidity condition impact consumer?

  • A tight liquidity condition could lead to a rise in the government securities yields and subsequently lead to a rise in interest rates for consumers too.
  • The 10-year government bond yield increased to 7.23% on September 21, 2022, from 7.18% on August 20, 2022.
  • Short-term rates would increase at a faster pace as the direct reflection of tighter liquidity and RBI’s rate hike would be on these papers.
  • Expected rise in repo rate: A rise in the repo rate will lead to a higher cost of funds. Banks will increase their repo-linked lending rates and the marginal cost of funds-based lending rate (MCLR), to which all loans are linked to. This rise will result in higher interest rates for consumers.

What can RBI do to deal with this situation?

  • As per the Economist, RBI’s actions will depend upon the nature of the liquidity situation. If the current liquidity deficit situation is temporary and is largely on account of advance tax flow, the RBI may not have to act, as the funds should eventually come back into the system.
  • However, if it is long-term in nature then the RBI may have to take measures to improve the liquidity situation in the system.

Way Forward:

  • Slow deposit growth could constrain robust credit growth. Banks need to increase deposit rates to incentivize greater deposit mobilization. Many banks have started special deposit schemes over the past month, offering more than 6 per cent interest on fixed deposits.
  • RBI will have to infuse liquidity through different tools to ensure a steady flow of credit. Going forward, the rise in inflation and interest rates could also pose a threat to credit growth.

MUST READ: RBI’s monetary policy

 Source:   Indian Express                       


G4 Countries and UNSC Reforms

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Syllabus

  • Prelims – international groupings
  • Mains – GS 2 (International Relations)

Context: Reform of the United Nations has been a central theme of External Affairs Minister visit to the United Nations and he also met with his counterparts from Germany, Brazil and Japan under The Group of Four (G4). The group is primarily focused on U.N. Security Council (UNSC) reform, and permanent membership of the body for G4 members, among others.

In this regard, let us discuss what is G4 grouping and why they aim for urgent need of UN Reforms.

About G4 Countries:

  • The G4 nations comprising Brazil, Germany, India, and Japan are four countries which support each other’s bids for permanent seats on the United Nations Security Council.

Basis for these demands:

  • Each of these four countries have figured among the elected non-permanent members of the council since the UN’s establishment.
  • Their economic and political influence has grown significantly in the last decades, reaching a scope comparable to the permanent members (P5).

About Coffee Club/Uniting for Consensus:

  • An informal “coffee club”, comprising 40-odd members states, has been instrumental in holding back reforms to the United Nations Security Council.
  • Most members of the club are middle-sized states who oppose bigger regional powers grabbing permanent seats in the UN Security Council.
  • The prime movers of the club include Italy, Spain, Australia, Canada, South Korea, Argentina, and Pakistan.
  • While Italy and Spain are opposed to Germany’s bid for Security Council’s permanent membership, Pakistan is opposed to India’s bid.
  • Similarly, Argentina is against Brazil’s bid and Australia opposes Japan’s.
  • Canada and South Korea are opposed to developing countries, often dependent on their aid, wielding more power than them at the UN.

Need for UN Reforms:

  • Equitable world order – There is a need for a more equitable world order to uphold the principles of democracy at the global level.
  • Inclusivity – Developing countries like the African countries, need to be made stakeholders in the multilateral institutions and involved in the decision-making process.
  • Mitigation of new threats – In the era of corona pandemic, rising protectionism, increased incidents of terrorism and the threat of climate change, multilateral system must become more resilient and responsive.
  • Desperate times call for desperate measures – There is already a precedent of expansion of G-20 in the face of 2008 Global Financial Crisis.
  • Rules of Procedure of General Assembly – For e.g., the type of majority required to pass a resolution, requirement of approval of the United Nations Security Council etc.

What reforms are required in the United Nations:

  • Methods of working of General Assembly – For e.g., before a document is adopted, each document must be translated to six languages. After that, many times the discussion veers towards the accuracy of the 6 languages. This process has many times delayed the adoption of texts in the UN
  • Membership of United Nations Security Council (UNSC), including the permanent membership and veto power – Since its inception, the UNSC has been enlarged only once. Even after that, the Permanent members of UNSC have remained fixed. This is problematic as the membership of UN has grown almost four times since its formation.
  • Veto Power – veto power has been the exclusive domain of P5 members. Many countries have put question mark on the existence of veto, which is contrary to democratic principles. Others have questioned the exclusivity of veto, which is limited to the P5 nations, as stated earlier.

Challenges to reforms and G4 demand:

  • Making a change in UN is a laborious process as the rules of procedure lean towards rigidity
  • Lack of Consensus – Although there is a general agreement towards change in the system, but different countries have different perceptions of the requirement for change.
    • For e.g. – G-4 nations demand a seat each as a permanent member, UFC asks for expansion of non-permanent seats, African union wants its representation at any cost etc.
  • Narrow political considerations – Countries view change in their own self-interest, rather than taking a wide world view.
    • For e.g. – many countries would like an expansion in the non-permanent space, so that they have an increased chance of getting elected to the membership of UN.
  • PGA’s (see inset) opposition to India’s demand – Yet another Challenge to India’s demand for recognition of India, specifically, and G-4, in general, as the permanent members of UNSC is the current PGA of UN.
    • The current PGA belongs to Turkey and is not friendly to India’s demand. In fact, he is biased towards Pakistan-led Coffee Club, which seeks to limit expansion of permanent membership of UNSC
  • Veto power of P5 – Support of all five permanent, veto-wielding members is required for expansion of UNSC. India must be cautious that it keeps on enjoying support from all P5 members, especially China, which so-far has been ambiguous towards India’s candidature as a permanent member of UNSC
  • African position – India has been generally supportive of African position where it has demanded one seat for its nominee.
    • The problem is that Africa wants to reserve the right to nominate the country by itself, rather than leaving it to the UN General Assembly. This is not acceptable to many members.
  • Lack of Records – One major issue is the lack of records of ongoing negotiations. Every time the meeting starts, the negotiations must start from scratch, as no records are maintained of previous discussions.

Way Forward:

  • Diplomatic outreach – India along with G4 needs to build upon its strengths through a diplomatic outreach to the major nations with whom it has friendly relations.
    • For e.g., India is the only nation whose candidature to United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is not opposed by any veto-wielding nation. Even China, with whom India has been engaged in a border standoff, has never publicly opposed India’s stance.
  • India’s soft power – India has continuously supported Least Developing Countries (LDCs) of Africa and Small Island nations in their developmental efforts.
    • This has led to development of India’s image as a benevolent and friendly country.
  • Contributions to United Nations – India needs to keep an eye on China, which has now become the biggest contributor of funds to the United Nations.
    • Also, China has now started sending troops to United Nations peace-keeping missions, with the agenda of rebuilding its global reputation
  • Diversification – Apart from United Nations Security Council, India needs to diversify its energy towards other agencies like International Monetary Fund, World Trade Organisation, World Health Organisation, to create a perception where it is considered as a natural leader.
    • For e.g. – Indian Prime Minister recently spoke at Economic Council (ECOSOC) to attach a sense of importance to the institution
  • Debate on India’s strategy – Reforming some institutions might require sacrifice on India’s part, for which we should have a clearly outlined strategy.
    • For e.g. – India has been a major beneficiary of World Bank loans. If we need a leadership position, we might need to give up on these loans.

MUST READ: UNSC Sanctions           

Source: The Hindu                   


Baba’s Explainer -Inflation Targeting as Monetary Policy

Inflation Targeting as Monetary Policy

Syllabus

  • GS-3: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.

Context: When, in May 2016, India adopted inflation targeting as a policy goal enshrined in law, it also embraced the idea of central bank “independence with accountability”.

Read Complete Details on Inflation Targeting as Monetary Policy


Daily Practice MCQs

Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) Which of the following is not a Dragonfly?

  1. Spiny horntail
  2. Golden dartlet
  3. Spoonbill
  4. Ditch jewel

Q.2) Consider the following statements about the Flex-Fuel Vehicles:

  1. They can operate on a mixture of flex fuel.
  2. They have two separate fuel system to mix the fuel for combustion.

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

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

Q.3) Consider the following statements, with respect to Banking system liquidity:

  1. It refers to readily available cash that banks need to meet long-term business and financial needs
  2. Cash in banking system turns deficit for the first time in over three years.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

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

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

ANSWERS FOR ’26th September 2022 – Daily Practice MCQs’ will be updated along with tomorrow’s Daily Current Affairs.


ANSWERS FOR 24th September – Daily Practice MCQs

Answers- Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) – d

Q.2) – b

Q.3) – c

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