DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam – 25th April 2023

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  • April 25, 2023
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First Ever Census on Water Bodies in India


  • Prelims –Governance

Context: Recently, the first-ever Census on Water Bodies in India took place.

About First Ever Census on Water Bodies in India:-

IMAGE SOURCE: India’s first water body census: How was it done, what does the report say | Explained News,The Indian Express

  • The first-ever census of water bodies across the nation was conducted by the Ministry of Jal Shakti.
  • The census provides a comprehensive inventory of India’s water resources, including natural and man-made water bodies like ponds, tanks, lakes, and more, and collects data on the encroachment of water bodies.
  • The Census also highlighted disparities between rural and urban areas and varying levels of encroachment and revealed crucial insights into the country’s water resources.
  • The census was launched under the centrally sponsored scheme, “Irrigation Census” in convergence with the 6th Minor Irrigation Census in order to have a comprehensive national database of all water bodies.
  • The census also took into account all types of uses of water bodies like irrigation, industry, pisciculture, domestic/ drinking, recreation, religious, groundwater recharge etc.

Key Findings:-

  • 24,24,540 water bodies have been enumerated in the country, out of which 97.1% are in rural areas and only 2.9% are in urban areas.
  • Top 5 States in terms of the number of water bodies are West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Assam which constitute around 63% of the total water bodies in the country.
  • Top 5 States in terms of the number of water bodies in urban areas are West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh and Tripura.
  • The top 5 States in rural areas, are West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Assam.
  • 59.5% of water bodies are ponds, followed by tanks (15.7%), reservoirs (12.1%), Water conservation schemes/percolation tanks/check dams (9.3%), lakes (0.9%) and others (2.5%).
  • 55.2% of water bodies are owned by private entities whereas 44.8% of water bodies are in the domain of public ownership.
  • Out of all publicly owned water bodies, the maximum water bodies are owned by Panchayats, followed by State Irrigation/State WRD.
  • Out of all privately owned water bodies, the maximum water bodies are in hands of Individual owners/farmers followed by groups of individuals and other private bodies.
  • Top 5 States which lead in the privately owned water bodies are West Bengal, Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Jharkhand.
  • Out of all ‘in use’ water bodies, major water bodies are reported to be used in pisciculture followed by Irrigation.
  • Top 5 States wherein major use of water bodies is in pisciculture are West Bengal, Assam, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.
  • Top 5 States wherein major use of water bodies is in irrigation are Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, West Bengal and Gujarat.
  • 78% of water bodies are man-made water bodies whereas 22% are natural water bodies.
  •  1.6% (38,496) water bodies out of all the enumerated water bodies are reported to have encroached out of which 95.4% are in rural areas and the remaining 4.6% in urban areas.
  • The information on the water spread area was reported in respect of 23,37,638 water bodies.
  •  Out of these water bodies, 72.4% have a water spread area of fewer than 0.5 hectares, 13.4% have a water spread area between 0.5-1 hectare, 11.1% have a water spread area between 1-5 hectares and the remaining 3.1% of water bodies have water spread area more than 5 hectares.

MUST READ: Water Crisis in India



Q.1) Gandikota canyon of South India was created by which one of the following rivers? (2022)

  1. Cauvery
  2. Manjira
  3. Pennar
  4. Tungabhadra

Q.2) Consider the following pairs: (2022)

  1. Reservoirs        :     States
  2. Ghataprabha   :     Telangana
  3. Gandhi Sagar  :     Madhya Pradesh
  4. Indira Sagar    :     Andhra Pradesh
  5. Maithon           :     Chhattisgarh

How many pairs given above are not correctly matched?

  1. Only one pair
  2. Only two pairs PAY
  3. Only three pairs
  4. All four pairs

Farmer producer Organizations


  • Prelims –Economy

Context: Recent reports show that big corporations with power over farmer producer companies are diluting their purpose.

About Farmer producer Organizations:-

IMAGE SOURCE: Farmers Producers Organization : Growth Engine for Indian Agriculture (ddmdeoria14.blogspot.com)

  • Farmer Producer Organisation (FPO) is a generic name, which refers to the farmer producers organization incorporated/ registered either under Part IXA of Companies Act or under Co-operative Societies Act of the concerned States.
  • The concept behind Farmer Producer Organizations is that farmers, who are the producers of agricultural products, can form groups.
  • To facilitate this process, the Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) was mandated by the Department of Agriculture and Cooperation, Ministry of Agriculture, Govt. of India, to support the State Governments in the formation of the Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs).

Objectives of FPOs:-

  • To provide a holistic and broad-based supportive ecosystem to form new FPOs to facilitate the development of vibrant and sustainable income-oriented farming and for overall socio-economic development and wellbeing of agrarian communities.
  • To enhance productivity through efficient, cost-effective and sustainable resource use.
  • To provide handholding and support to new FPOs up to five years from the year of its creation.
  • To provide effective capacity building to FPOs to develop agriculture entrepreneurship skills.

Benefits Emanating From FPO:-

  • FPOs can engage farmers in collective farming and address productivity issues emanating from small farm sizes.
  • Provide additional employment generation due to the increased intensity of farming.
  • Negotiating With Corporates: FPO can help farmers compete with large corporate enterprises in bargaining, as it allows members to negotiate as a group and can help small farmers in both input and output markets.
  • Economics of Aggregation: The FPO can provide low-cost and quality inputs to member farmers.
  • Social Impact: Social capital will develop in the form of FPOs, as it may lead to improved gender relations and decision-making of women farmers in FPOs.

Formation and Promotion of 10,000 Farmer Producer Organisations :-

  • It was launched by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare in 2020.
  • It is a Central sector scheme .
  • Objective: to provide hand-holding support to FPCs and to meet the target of creating 10,000 FPOs by 2024. More than 2200 FPOs produce clusters have been allocated for the formation of FPOs in 2020-21.
  • Implementing Agencies (IAs) engaged Cluster-Based Business Organizations (CBBOs) to aggregate, register & provide professional handholding support to each FPO for a period of 5 years.
    • CBBOs: the platform for an end to end knowledge for all issues related to FPO promotion.
  • Financial Assistance under the scheme:
    • Up to Rs. 18.00 lakh per FPO for a period of 3 years.
    • Provision were also made for matching equity grant up to Rs. 2,000 per farmer member of FPO with a limit of Rs. 15.00 lakh per FPO.
    • Provision of a credit guarantee facility up to Rs. 2 crores of project loan per FPO from the eligible lending institution to ensure institutional credit accessibility to FPOs.
  • Significance:-
    • Increase Farmers Income: It will promote the selling of farmers’ produce from the farm gate of farmers thereby enhancing farmers’ income.
    • Create Employment: It will accelerate more investment in marketing and value addition infrastructure near to farm gates creating more employment opportunities for rural youth.
    • Make Farming Viable:It will make farming more viable by aggregating land.

MUST READ: Doubling the Farmers’ Income – a myth or reality



Q.1) Which of the following activities constitute real sector in the economy? (2022)

  1. Farmers harvesting their crops
  2. Textile mills converting raw cotton into fabrics
  3. A commercial bank lending money to a trading company

A corporate body issuing Rupee Denominated Bonds overseas

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

Q.2) Which of the following factors/policies were affecting the price of rice in India in the recent past?(2020)

  1. Minimum Support Price
  2. Government’s trading
  3. Government’s stockpiling
  4. Consumer subsidies

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

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

National Technology Centre for Ports Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC)


  • Prelims –Economy

Context: Recently, the National Technology Centre for Ports Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC) was inaugurated at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.

About National Technology Centre for Ports Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC):-

IMAGE SOURCE: National Technology Centre for Ports Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC) – Bing images

  • The National Technology Centre for Ports, Waterways & Coasts (NTCPWC) has been envisioned as the centre for technological innovations and evolution of new ideas and breakthroughs for the port and maritime sector.
  •  It works as the technology arm of Ministry of Shipping .
  • It provides the needful technological support to ports, and other institutions.
  •  It gives effective solutions to an extensive range of problems being faced in the industry through scientific support and also providing valuable education, applied research and technology transfer in maritime transportation at the local, regional, national and International levels.
  • This Centre was set up as an incubation centre at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IITM), Chennai during 2018 .
  • It expanded its activities both in research and development of a new campus at Thaiyur, Kelambakkam, Chennai.
  • The new research facility is a vibrant knowledge centre for students, the industry and academicians, he said.


  • To empower Make in India’ for Port, Coastal and Inland water transport and engineering by developing state-of-the-art technologies and application products.
  • To enable fast-track innovations in order to provide most appropriate solutions to various challenges.
  • To create a pool of competent manpower equipped with state-of-the-art theoretical and practical knowhow.
  • Self-sufficiency in providing:-
    • Short term solutions through scientific studies
    • Technology development
    • Technical arm in identifying complex problems and solving issues

MUST READ: Indian Ports Association



Q.1) Atal Innovation Mission is set up under the (2019)

  1. Department of Science and Technology
  2. Ministry of Labour and Employment
  3. NITI Aayog
  4. Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship

Q.2) 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.

Rule of law


  • Prelims –Polity

Context: Recently, the ‘Rule of law’ doctrine came to view during investigation into the Atiq Ahmed murder case.

About Rule of law:-

IMAGE SOURCE: Cayman Islands Legislation – Home (gov.ky)


  • The origins of the Rule of Law may be traced back to the 13th century A.D.
  • Around 350 BC, Greek philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle addressed the concept of the rule of law.
  • Sir Edward Coke, the Chief Justice of England during the reign of King James I, was the first to criticise the maxims of Divine Concept (Divine Authority of God)
  • He was certain that the King should be subject to the Rule of law as well.
  • Later A.V. Dicey refined the Rule of Law idea in his work “Introduction to the Law of Constitution (1885).”
  • According to Dicey, the Rule of Law states that no one is punished or may be legitimately made to suffer in body or property except for a clear violation of the law, and no one is above the law.
  • Thus, the term Rule of Law refers to the supremacy of law over government.
  • Three implications of the rule of law philosophy as per A V Dicey:-
    • Absence of arbitrary authority, i.e. no one is penalised until he violates the law
    • Equality before the law entails the equal submission of all citizens (rich or poor, high or low, official or unofficial) to the ordinary law of the state as administered by ordinary law courts.
    • Individual rights take precedence, which means that the constitution is the consequence of individual rights as established and enforced by courts of law, rather than the constitution being the source of individual rights.

MUST READ: The Bail Law



Q.1) Under the Indian constitution concentration of wealth violates (2021)

  1. The Right to Equality
  2. The Directive Principles of State Policy
  3. The Right to Freedom
  4. The Concept of Welfare

Q.2) Which of the following are regarded as the main features of the “Rule of Law”? (2018)

  1. Limitation of powers
  2. Equality before law
  3. People’s responsibility to the Government
  4. Liberty and civil rights

Select the correct answer using the code given below :

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

Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP)


  • Prelims –Polity

Context: The Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP) Committee has taken up measures to establish close to 2500 theme-based polling stations across Karnataka.

About Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP):-

IMAGE SOURCE: SVEEP PPT | PDF | Voter Turnout | Voting (scribd.com)

  • Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation program, better known as SVEEP, is the flagship program of the Election Commission of India.
  • It is for voter education, spreading voter awareness and promoting voter literacy in India.
  • It is working towards preparing India’s electors and equipping them with basic knowledge related to the electoral process since 2009.
  • SVEEP’s primary goal is to build a truly participative democracy in India by encouraging all eligible citizens to vote and make an informed decision during the elections.
  •  The programme is based on multiple general as well as targeted interventions.
    • These are designed according to the socio-economic, cultural and demographic profile of the state as well as the history of electoral participation in previous rounds of elections and learning thereof.

MUST READ: Electoral Financing



Q.1) With reference to anti-defection law in India, consider the following statements: (2022)

  1. The law specifies that a nominated legislator cannot join any political party within six months of being appointed to the House.
  2. The law does not provide any time-frame within which the presiding officer has to decide a defection case.

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

Q.2) Consider the following statements: (2018)

  1. In the first Lok Sabha, the single largest party in the opposition was the Swatantra Party.
  2. In the Lok Sabha, a “Leader of the Opposition” was recognised for the first time in 1969.
  3. In the Lok Sabha, if a party does not have a minimum of 75 members, its leader cannot be recognised as the Leader of the Opposition.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

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

Calcium carbide


  • Prelims –Science and technology

Context: Recently, the FSSAI urged food commissioners of all states and Union Territories (UT) to take action against the unauthorised use of calcium carbide for the ripening of fruits.

About Calcium carbide:-

IMAGE SOURCE: Calcium Carbide Market | Global Industry Report, 2031 (transparencymarketresearch.com)

  • Calcium carbide, also known as calcium acetylide or ‘masala’.
  • It is commonly used in mining and metal industries as well as in the production of acetylene gas.
  • It is a highly reactive compound and releases acetylene gas which is used to artificially ripen fruits.


  • Calcium Carbide is used in producing polyvinyl chloride as acetylene, which is the derivative of calcium carbide and is used as a raw material for PVC production.
  • Calcium Carbide is also used in the production of acetylene and calcium hydroxide.
  • It can be used in the removal of sulphur from iron.
  • We can use it to produce calcium cyanamide.
  • This compound can also be used as a ripening agent such as ethylene.
  • It can be used in lamps like carbide lamps.
  • It is also used as a deoxidizer, which means it helps in oxygen removal during steel manufacturing.
  • It is also used in bamboo cannons and big-bang cannons.

Health damages:-

  • Its use can prove in serious health consequences.
  •  The use of ‘masasla’ in fruits is highly toxic.
  • It can cause health damage including respiratory problems and skin irritation, which may lead to cancer.

MUST READ: Vinyl Chloride



Q.1) Consider the following statements in respect of probiotics : (2022)

  1. Probiotics are made of both bacteria and yeast.
  2. The organisms in probiotics are found in foods we ingest but they do not naturally occur in our gut.
  3. Probiotics help in the digestion of milk sugars.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

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

Q.2) Bisphenol A (BPA), a cause of concern, is a structural/key component in the manufacture of which of the following kinds of plastics? (2021)

  1. Low-density polyethylene
  2. Polycarbonate
  3. Polyethylene terephthalate
  4. Polyvinyl Chloride

Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) law


  • Prelims –Economy

Context: Recently, the European Union, approved the world’s first set of comprehensive rules ‘the Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) law’ for cryptocurrency markets.

About Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) law:-

  • The Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) law, will regulates cryptocurrencies for the first time in its entirety.
  • It is anticipated to set new standards for regulation of cryptocurrencies globally.
  •  MiCA will impose compliance on the issuers of crypto assets, who are defined as the “legal person who offers to the public any type of crypto-assets”.
  • It will apply to crypto-asset service providers (CASPs) providing one or more of these services the operation of a trading platform like CoinBase, custody, and administration of crypto assets on behalf of third parties (customers), the exchange of crypto assets for funds/other crypto-assets, the execution of orders for crypto assets, the placing of crypto assets, providing transfer services for crypto assets to third parties, providing advice on cryptoassets and crypto-portfolio management.
  • The regulation prescribes different sets of requirements for CASPs depending on the type of cryptoassets.
  • The base regime will require every CASP to get incorporated as a legal entity in the EU.
  • They can get authorised in any one member country and will be allowed to conduct their services across the 27 countries.
  • They will then be supervised by regulators like the European Banking Authority and the European Securities and Markets Authority, who will ensure that the companies have the required risk management and corporate governance practices in place.
  • CASPs will have to demonstrate their stability and soundness, ability to keep the funds users safe, implementation of controls to ensure they are not engaging in proprietary trading; avoidance of conflicts of interest, and their ability to defend against market abuse and manipulation.
  • Besides authorisation, service providers of stablecoins also have to furnish key information in the form of a white paper.
    • It will mention the details of the crypto product and the main participants in the company, the terms of the offer to the public, the type of blockchain verification mechanism they use, the rights attached to the cryptoassets in question, the key risks involved for the investors and a summary to help potential purchasers make an informed decision regarding their investment.
  • Issuers of stablecoins will also be required to maintain sufficient reserves corresponding to their value to avoid liquidity crises.
    • Those stablecoin firms pegged to non-euro currencies will have to cap their transactions at a daily volume of €200 million ($220 million) in a specified region.
  • Another legislation passed with MiCA requires crypto companies to send information of senders and recipients of cryptoassets to their local anti-money laundering authority, to prevent laundering and terror financing activities.

MUST READ: Cryptocurrencies Regulation



Q.1) With reference to Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), consider the following statements: (2022)

  1. They enable the digital representation of physical assets.
  2. They are unique cryptographic tokens that exist on a blockchain.
  3. They can be traded or exchanged at equivalency and therefore can be used as a medium transactions. of commercial

Which of the statements given above are correct?

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

Q.2) Consider the following pairs of Terms sometimes seen in news vs Context /Topic: (2018)

  1. Belle II experiment:                 Artificial Intelligence
  2. Blockchain technology:           Digital/ Cryptocurrency
  3. CRISPR — Cas9:                       Particle Physics

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

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

National Civil Services Day


  • Prelims –Polity

Context: Recently, National Civil Services Day was commemorated.

About National Civil Services Day:-

  • National Civil Services Day is celebrated in India on 21st April.
  • This day acts as a reminder for civil servants, working in various departments, of the cause to serve the citizens of the country above all else.
  • The government of India celebrates Civil Services Day, every year as an occasion for the civil servants to rededicate themselves to the cause of serving citizens and renew their commitments to public service and excellence in work.
  • The reason behind choosing this very date was to commemorate the day when the first Home Minister of Independent India, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, addressed the probationers of Administrative Services Officers in 1947 at Metcalf House, Delhi.
    • There he referred to civil servants as the ‘steel frame of India’.
    • This meant that civil servants, employed at various levels of the government, act as supporting pillars of the country’s administrative system.
  • As part of Civil Services Day, Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Public Administration are presented to Districts/Implementing Units for implementation of Priority programmes and innovation categories.
  • The theme for this year’s Civil Services Day is ‘Viksit Bharat: Empowering Citizens and Reaching the Last Mile’.

MUST READ:  Good Governance Day



Q.1) With reference to India, consider the following statements: (2022)

  1. Government law officers and legal firms are recognized as advocates, but corporate lawyers and patent attorneys are excluded from recognition as advocates.
  2. Bar Councils have the power to lay down the rules relating to legal education and recognition of law colleges.

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

Q.2) Consider the following statements: (2022)

  1. Attorney General of India and Solicitor General of India are the only officers of the Government who are allowed to participate in the meetings of the Parliament of India.
  2. According to the Constitution of India, the Attorney General of India submits his resignation when the Government which appointed him resigns.

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

Genome sequencing


  • Mains – GS 3 (Science and Technology)

Context: The Department of Biotechnology (DBT) recently said that the exercise to sequence 10,000 Indian human genomes under the Centre-backed Genome India Project is about two-thirds complete.

  • About 7,000 Indian genomes have already been sequenced of which, 3,000 are available for public access by researchers.
  • The United Kingdom, China, and the United States have launched similar programmes to sequence at least 1,00,000 of their population’s genomes.

About Genome Sequencing:

  • A genome is a complete set of genetic instructions which are present in an organism in its DNA. Sequencing is the sequence of occurrences of the four nucleotide bases i.e., adenine (A), cytosine (C), guanine (G), and thymine (T).
  • The human genome is made up of over 3 billion of these genetic letters.
    • The whole genome can’t be sequenced all at once because available methods of DNA sequencing can only handle short stretches of DNA at a time.
  • While human genomes are made of DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid), a virus genome can be made of either DNA or RNA (Ribonucleic acid).
    • Coronavirus is made of RNA.
  • Genome sequencing is a technique that reads and interprets genetic information found within DNA or RNA.

Significance of genome sequencing:

  • Origin of epidemic: Genome sequencing helps researchers understand the arrangement of the makeup of DNA or RNA.
    • Sequencing the genome will help us understand where the certain virus for instance of SARS-CoV-2 came from and how it spread.
  • Control the spread: Sequencing is useful to know and check if the strain is evolving. By knowing change in genes it can help in preventing its spread.
    • For instance, scientists already know the number of mutations that arise on an average in a month in the case of COVID-19, its incubation period, and the average time between cases in a chain transmission.
  • Evolutionary studies: Global science would also benefit from genome sequencing, which would provide data useful for the mapping of the spread and migration of a range of life forms in the old World and thus would help in better understanding of human evolution.
  • Determining gene-disease link: Human genome sequencing is important to establish a link between diseases and the unique genetic make-up of each individual.
    • For instance, cardiovascular disease generally leads to heart attacks in South Asians.
    • If such propensities can be mapped to variations across genomes, it is believed public health interventions can be targeted better.
  • Better understanding of diseases like cancer: While genes may render some insensitive to certain drugs, genome sequencing has shown that cancer too can be understood from the viewpoint of genetics, rather than being seen as a disease of certain organs.
  • Drug efficacy: Another advantage of genome sequencing is that information regarding drug efficacy or adverse effects of drug use can be obtained.
    • Drugs developed in the Western world and sold in India are pricey and may not be effective on the Indian gene.
    • Mapping of India’s genetic landscape is critical for next generation medicine.
  • Agricultural usage: It will enhance India’s scientific capabilities. Next step would be genome sequencing of crops that would help in better understanding of the genetic basis of susceptibility of crops to blights, rusts and pests.
    • It may become possible to deter them genetically, and reduce dependence on chemicals.

significance of the Genome India project:

  • It started in Jan 2020 with the involvement of about 20 institutions across India and with analysis and coordination done by the Centre for Brain Research at IISc, Bangalore.
    • The Centre’s Department of Biotechnology notes that the project will help “unravel the genetic underpinnings of chronic diseases currently on the rise in India.
  • India’s 1.3 billion-strong population consists of over 4,600 population groups, many of which are endogamous.
    • Thus, the Indian population harbours distinct variations, with disease-causing mutations often amplified within some of these groups.
  • Creating a database of Indian genomes allows researchers to learn about genetic variants unique to India’s population groups and use that to customise drugs and therapies.

Challenges in Genome Sequencing:

  • Very High target: The aim was to sequence at least 5% of the samples, the minimum required to keep track of the virus variants.
    • This has so far been only around 1%, primarily due to insufficient reagents and tools necessary to scale up the process.
  • Low Capacity: The ten laboratories together can sequence about 30,000 samples a month, or 1,000 a day, six times less than what is needed to meet the target.
  • Fund crunch: Funding is being delayed repeatedly. INSACOG asked for Rs 100 crore, but it was not until March that any funding arrived and it received Rs 70 crore.
  • Sample Collection: The healthcare system is already overstretched and this is one additional task for them to sort and package samples and RNA preparations regularly for shipping in a cold chain to sequencing centres along with recording extensive metadata to make sequence information useful.
  • Dependence on Imports: The process of genome sequencing slowed down due to the Atma Nirbhar scheme which banned imports of goods worth less than Rs 200 crore to promote local procurement.
    • Even after the exemption, some special plastics inadvertently remained within the import ban affecting the process.
  • International aspect: The poor progress in genome sequencing also affects India’s image abroad, as all countries are required to upload data into a common global repository, called the ‘Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza data’, or GISAID.

Way Forward:

Given the benefits of genome sequencing, it will help in better understanding of the human body and processes and will help in treating earlier untreatable diseases. Although there are some issues and challenges, these can be handled and resolved.

Source:  The Hindu

Glacial Retreat: Causes and Impact


  • Mains – GS 1 (Geography) and GS 3 (Environment and ecology)

Context: The State of Global Climate 2022 was recently released by the UN’s World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

Highlights of the report:

  • Melting glaciers and warming oceans triggered global sea levels to jump to the highest on record in 2022.
  • Global sea levels have hiked at more than double the rate they did in the first decade of the satellite record from 1993 to 2002.
  • Ocean heat levels broke records, with almost 60 % experiencing at least one marine heatwave.
  • Melting glaciers and high ocean temperatures accounted for an average increase in sea levels of 4.62mm a year from 2013 to 2022.

About Glacial Retreat:

  • Glacial retreat refers to the process of a glacier shrinking or receding in size over time due to a decrease in ice accumulation or an increase in ice melt.
  • Examples of melting of glaciers:
    • Greenland Ice Sheet – losing about 280 billion tons of ice per year;
    • Himalayan glaciers could disappear entirely by 2100.
    • Glaciers in the European Alps have been in retreat since the mid-19th century,
    • Glaciers in the Andes Mountains of South America lost up to 80% of their mass since the 1970s.

Reasons for melting of glaciers:

  • Global warming due to climate change: Rising temperatures cause glaciers to melt faster than they can accumulate new snow.
  • Changes in precipitation: Changes in the amount, timing, and form of precipitation can also affect the extent and thickness of glaciers.
  • Human activities: Deforestation, burning of fossil fuels, and industrial processes etc. contribute to the emission of greenhouse gases, which are a key driver of global warming, which in turn leads to the melting of glaciers.
  • Solar radiation: The most important of these is the quantity of solar energy that touches the ice, which has an impact on glacier melting and receding. Glaciers lose mass as a result of increased radiation-induced melting.
  • Glacial till: The unsorted mass of material known as glacial till is gathered by moving glaciers and can include everything from silt to big boulders.
    • The ice is protected by boulders while the weaker ice around it melts.

Impact of melting glaciers:

  • As a glacier retreats, it can lead to a number of significant environmental impacts, including changes in water availability, alterations to local ecosystems, and increased risk of natural disasters such as floods and landslides.
  • Rising sea level and coastal erosion: When Sea levels rise due to melting glaciers, more frequent and more powerful coastal storms like hurricanes and typhoons are produced.
    • The Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets in particular are the main causes of the rise in sea levels worldwide.
  • Water scarcity: Glaciers are an important source of freshwater for many communities around the world.
    • As glaciers melt and retreat, it can lead to water scarcity and affect agriculture and other industries.
  • Changes in weather patterns: Melting glaciers can affect weather patterns, leading to changes in temperature, precipitation, and other weather-related phenomena.
    • When glaciers melt, the resulting freshwater enters the ocean, which can destabilize the salinity balance of the North Atlantic and weaken the AMOC.
    • This weakening can cause changes in regional climate patterns, such as cooler temperatures in Europe and increased hurricane activity in the North Atlantic.
  • Reduced albedo effect: As glaciers melt, they reduce the earth’s ability to reflect sunlight back into space, leading to increased absorption of solar radiation and warmer temperatures.
  • Fishing industries: Industries that thrive on vibrant fisheries will be affected as warmer waters change where and when fish spawn.
    • Coastal communities will continue to face billion-dollar disaster recovery bills as flooding becomes more frequent and storms become more intense.
  • Wildlife: In the Arctic, as sea ice melts, wildlife like walruses are losing their home and polar bears are spending more time on land, causing higher rates of conflict between people and bears.
  • Threat of coral reefs: To thrive through the process of photosynthesis, coral reefs need sunshine.
    • Due to glaciers melting or retreating, rising sea levels prevent corals from receiving adequate sunlight.

Way Forward: Suggestive measures

  • Reduce carbon emissions: This can be done by increasing the use of alternative energy sources such as wind and solar power, and by implementing policies to reduce energy consumption. e.g. fulfilling the net zero emission targets.
  • Promote energy efficiency: This includes measures such as improving building insulation and promoting the use of energy-efficient appliances. e.g. Green Housing Scheme by National Housing Bank.
  • Encourage public transportation: This can reduce the use of private cars and consequently the emission of greenhouse gases. e.g. Public Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme in Hong Kong.
  • Afforestation and reducing deforestation: Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, so planting more trees can help reduce the amount of greenhouse gases in the air.
  • Reduce waste and recycle: This can reduce the amount of greenhouse gases released through landfill and other waste disposal methods.
  • Implement sustainable agriculture practices: These practices can help reduce emissions from agricultural activities and preserve water resources. e.g. conservation tillage.
  • International agreements: Governments can work together on international agreements to limit carbon emissions and combat global warming. e.g. Paris Agreement, Montreal protocol etc.

Source: DTE

Practice MCQs

Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) law is often mentioned in the news approved by

  1. World Bank
  2. European union
  3. Ministry of Science and Technology
  4. BRICS

Q.2) Calcium carbide often used as a ripening agent for mangoes and other fruits also used in the manufacturing of which of the following?

  1. Polyvinyl chloride
  2. Acetylene
  3. Calcium cyanamide
  4. Carbide lamps
  5. Bamboo cannons

select the correct answer using the code given below:

  1. 1 3 and 4 only
  2. 2 4 and 5 only
  3. 1 3 and 5 only
  4. All of the above

Q.3) Consider the following statements regarding the Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP):

  1. SVEEP is the flagship program of the Election Commission of India.
  2. It is for voter education, spreading voter awareness and promoting voter literacy in India.

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 ’ 24th April 2023 – Daily Practice MCQs’ will be updated along with tomorrow’s Daily Current Affairs.st

ANSWERS FOR 22nd April – Daily Practice MCQs

Answers- Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) – b

Q.2) – d

Q.3) – c

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