DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS IAS | UPSC Prelims and Mains Exam –30th June 2023

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  • June 30, 2023
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National Sample Survey Office (NSSO)


  • Prelims – Important Institutions

Context: Recently, the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) in association with S. K. Somaiya College in Mumbai celebrated the 17th Statistics Day.


  • This year, the theme selected for Statistics Day, 2023 is ‘Alignment of State Indicator Framework with National Indicator Framework for Monitoring Sustainable Development Goals’.
  • National Statistics Day: it is celebrated on 29th June every year on the birth anniversary of Prof. Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis.
  • Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis: He is considered the father of modern statistics in India.
  • He founded the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) and shaped the Planning Commission.

About National Sample Survey Office (NSSO):-

  • Established: 1950.
  • The National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) is now merged with the Central Statistical Office to form the National Statistical Office (NSO) in 2019.
    • Central Statistical Office: it was responsible for the coordination of statistical activities in the country.
  • Objective: to conduct large-scale sample surveys throughout India.
  • Head: by a Director General.
  • Ministry: Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation
  • It was the largest organization in India responsible for conducting periodic socio-economic surveys. (UPSC CSE: All India Debt & Investment Survey NSS 77th round)

Functions of NSSO:-

  • It is responsible for the conduct of large-scale sample surveys in diverse fields on an all-India basis.
  • Primarily data are collected through nationwide household surveys on various socio-economic subjects, Annual Survey of Industries (ASI), etc.
  • It collects data on rural and urban prices.
  • It plays a significant role in the improvement of crop statistics through supervision of the area enumeration and crop estimation surveys of the State agencies.
  • It also maintains a frame of urban area units for use in sample surveys in urban areas.

The NSSO has four Divisions:

  • Survey Design and Research Division (SDRD): is responsible for the technical planning of surveys, formulation of concepts and presentation of survey results etc.
    • HQ: Kolkata.
  • Field Operations Division (FOD): it is responsible for the collection of primary data for the surveys undertaken by NSS.
    • HQ: Delhi/Faridabad.
  • Data Processing Division (DPD): it is responsible for sample selection, software development, processing, validation and tabulation of the data collected through surveys.
    • HQ: Kolkata.
  • Survey Coordination Division (SCD): it coordinates all the activities of different Divisions of NSS.
    • HQ: New Delhi.

MUST READ: National Statistical Commission (NSC)



Q.1) Consider the following statements : (2023)


In the post-pandemic recent past, many Central Banks worldwide had carried out interest rate hikes.

Statement-II :

Central Banks generally assume that they have the ability to counteract the rising consumer prices via monetary policy means.

Which one of the following is correct in respect of the above statements?

  1.  Both Statement-I and Statement-II are correct and Statement-II is the correct explanation for Statement-I.
  2.  Both Statement-I and Statement II are correct and Statement II is not the correct explanation for Statement-I
  3. Statement-I is correct but Statement II is· incorrect
  4.  Statement-I is incorrect but Statement II is correct

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

  1. In India, credit rating agencies are regulated by the Reserve Bank of India.
  2. The rating agency popularly known as ICRA is a public limited company.
  3. Brickwork Ratings is an Indian credit rating agency.

Which of the statements given above is correct?

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

Central Board for Film Certification (CBFC)


  • Prelims – Important Institutions

Context: Central Board for Film Certification (CBFC) clarified that the film Bahattar Hoorain, was granted ‘A’ certification in 2019.

About Central Board for Film Certification (CBFC):-


  • Establishment: 1951
  • It is a statutory body under the Cinematograph Act 1952. (UPSC CSE: Amendments to Cinematograph Act)
  • Ministry: Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
  • HQ: Mumbai, Maharashtra.
  • Films can be publicly exhibited in India only after they are certified by the CBFC.

Objectives of CBFC:-

  • To ensure good and healthy entertainment in accordance with the provisions of the Cinematograph Act 1952 and the Cinematograph (Certification) Rules 1983.
  • To grant a certificate to regulate the public exhibition of films in India.
  • To promote recreation, education, and good and healthy entertainment to the public according to the provisions of the Cinematograph Act, 1952, and Cinematograph (Certification) Rules, 1983.

Structure of CBFC:-

  • CBFC board: is headed by a central government-appointed chairperson and 12-45 non-official members.
  • The members are eminent persons from social science, education, law, arts or films background appointed.


  • It examines films for content that may be harmful or unsuitable for some particular audiences, particularly children and young people.
  • It ensures that films adhere to ethical standards, respecting cultural values and societal norms.
  • After evaluating the content and classifying the film, the CBFC grants a certificate that permits the film’s public exhibition.


  • Filmmakers can appeal against the CBFC’s decisions in the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT).
    • FCAT: it is an independent body to review and resolves appeals.

Films are certified under four categories:-

  • “U”: unrestricted public exhibition.
  • “A”: restricted to adult audiences.
  • “U/A”: unrestricted public exhibition subject to parental guidance for children below the age of twelve.
  • “S”: restricted to specialized audiences such as doctors or scientists.
    • The board may also refuse to certify.

MUST READ: Reforms



Q.1) In India under cyber insurance for individuals, which of the following benefits are generally covered, in addition to payment for the loss of funds and other benefits? (2020)

  1. Cost of restoration of the computer system in case of malware disrupting access to one’s computer
  2. Cost of a new computer if some miscreant wilfully damages it, if proved so
  3. Cost of hiring a specialized consultant to minimize the loss in case of cyber extortion
  4. Cost of defence in the Court of Law if any third party files a suit

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

Q.2) Which of the following is/are the aim/aims of the “Digital India” Plan of the Government of India? (2018)

  1. Formation of India’s own Internet companies like China did.
  2. Establish a policy framework to encourage overseas multinational corporations that collect Big Data to build their large data centres within our national geographical boundaries.
  3. Connect many of our villages to the Internet and bring Wi-Fi to many of our schools, public places and major tourist centres.

Select the correct answer using the code given below :

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

Himalaya Mountains


  • Prelims –Geography

Context: According to a recent study, the Himalayas Mountains and other mountains across the Northern Hemisphere are likely to see 15 per cent more rain for every 1-degree Celsius rise.

Key Findings of the report:-

  • Climate change could cause a shift in snowfall to rainfall in mountain regions across the Northern Hemisphere, amplifying rainfall extremes lasting over a few hours to a day.
  • For 2 degrees and 3 degrees rise, the world would see a 30 per cent and 45 per cent increase in rain,
  • This switch from snowfall to rainfall could increase the risk of disasters such as floods, landslides, and soil erosion.
  • Not all mountain regions are at high risk.
    • The Himalayas and the North American Pacific Mountain ranges, including the Cascades, Sierra Nevada, and coastal ranges from Canada to Southern California are more threatened than the Rockies or the Alps.
    • Cascades: this mountain range is a segment of the Pacific mountain system of western North America.
    • Sierra Nevada: it is a major mountain range of western North America, running along the eastern edge of the U.S. state of
    • Rocky Mountains: they stretch from northern Alberta and British Columbia in Canada southward to New Mexico in the United States.
    • Alps: a small segment of a discontinuous mountain chain that stretches from the Atlas Mountains of North Africa across southern Europe and Asia to beyond the Himalayas.
  • The Himalayas is one of those hotspot regions where we see an increased risk of rainfall extremes.

About the Himalaya Mountains:-

IMAGE SOURCE: jfb-levage.com

  • They are the world’s tallest mountain ranges.
  • Begin at Pamir Knot in the west
  • End: Purvanchal in the east.
  • Major Peaks: Mount Everest, Karakora (K2), Kailash, Kanchenjunga, Nanga Parbat, Annapurna, and Manasklu.

Formation of Himalayas:

  • The Himalayas are the result of the Indian and Eurasian plates colliding.
  • Indian Peninsula split off from Gondwana during the Cretaceous Period and began moving north.
    • Gondwana: ancient supercontinent that incorporated present-day South America, Africa, Arabia, Madagascar, India, Australia, and Antarctica.
  • Between the two plates, the Tethys Sea was squeezed, creating a geosyncline.
    • Geosyncline: a large-scale depression in the earth’s crust containing very thick deposits.
    • Tethys Sea: a prehistoric ocean during much of the Mesozoic Era and early Cenozoic Era, located between the ancient continents of Gondwana and Laurasia.
  • The Indian Plate’s oceanic boundary was subducted as the plate moved north.
  • The northward drift along with the Tethys sea compression caused the Himalayas to rise.
  • The mountains continued to converge, creating fold mountains known as the Greater Himalayas.

Divisions of Himalayas:-

  • Trans Himalayas
    • The Trans Himalaya is a 1,600-kilometre-long (990 mi) mountain range, extending in a west–east direction parallel to the main Himalayan range.
  • Great Himalayas
    • Its average height is 5000 km.
    • It has loft peaks along with extensive snowfields of glaciers.
  • Middle Himalayas
    • Its average height is 1300 to 5000km.
  • Shiwaliks
    • This is not a continuous range, it is also called the outer Himalayas.

The Himalayas can be divided into the following subdivisions:-

  • Kashmir or Northwestern Himalayas
    • It comprises a series of ranges such as the Karakoram, Ladakh, Zanskar and Pir Panjal.
  • Himachal and Uttarakhand Himalayas
    • This part lies approximately between the Ravi in the west and the Kali in the east.
    • Ravi: a tributary of the Indus River.
    • Kali: a tributary of the Ghaghara River.
  • Darjeeling and Sikkim Himalayas
    • They are flanked by Nepal Himalayas in the west and Bhutan Himalayas in the east.
  • Arunachal Himalayas
    • These extend from the east of the Bhutan Himalayas up to the Diphu Pass in the east.

Significance of the Himalayas for India:-

  • River source: The great rivers and their tributaries like Ganga, Brahmaputra, Indus etc. originate here.
  • Fertile plains of North India: the rivers carry enormous quantities of alluvium while descending from the Himalayas.
    • This is deposited in the Great Plain in the form of fertile soil, making the plain one of the most fertile lands in the world.
  • India’s Energy Security: Almost 33% of the country’s thermal electricity and 52% of its hydropower is dependent on river waters originating in the Himalayas.
  • Monsoon: The Himalayas play a very significant role in monsoon.
    • Due to their high altitude, length and direction, they effectively intercept the summer monsoons coming from the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea and cause precipitation in the form of rain or snow.
  • Forest Resources: The Himalayan ranges are very rich in forest resources.
    • The Himalayan forests provide fuel wood and a large variety of raw materials for forest-based industries.
  • Tourism: due to their scenic beauty and healthy environment, the Himalayan ranges have developed a large number of tourist spots.



Q.1) Consider the following activities : (2023)

  1. Spreading finely ground basalt rock on farmlands extensively
  2. Increasing the alkalinity of oceans by adding _lime.
  3. Capturing carbon dioxide released by various industries and pumping it into abandoned
  4. Subterranean mines in the form of carbonated waters.

How many of the above activities are often considered and discussed for carbon capture and sequestration?

  1. Only one
  2. Only two
  3. All three
  4. None

Q.2) When you travel in the Himalayas, you will see the following: (2012)

  1. Deep gorges
  2. U-turn river courses
  3. Parallel mountain ranges
  4. Steep gradients causing land sliding

Which of the above can be said to be the evidence for the Himalayas being young fold mountains?

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

Green Credit Programme (GCP)


  • Prelims – Environment and Ecology

Context: Recently, the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change have notified draft rules for ‘Green Credit’.


  • The ministry proposed the draft Green Credit Programme Implementation Rules 2023 in a notification issued on June 26, 2023.
  • It has invited objections and suggestions within 60 days.

About Green Credit Programme (GCP):-

  • Launched: 2023.
    • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had launched “Green Credit Programme”(GCP) in Union Budget 2023-24.
  • Objective: to create a market-based mechanism for undertaking environment-friendly activities such as afforestation programmes, and water conservation by providing additional incentives in the form of green credits.
    • Green Credit: it is an incentive that individuals, farmer-producer organisations (FPO), industries, and rural and urban local bodies, among other stakeholders, will be able to earn for environment-positive actions.
  • Ministry: Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
  • It will be launched at the national level to incentivize voluntary environmental actions of various stakeholders.
  • It will encourage private sector industries by taking actions, which are able to converge with activities relevant to generating or buying Green Credits.

Governance Structure of GCP:-

GCP Administrator

  • The Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) will be the administrator of GCP.
    • ICFRE: it is an autonomous organisation or governmental agency under the MoEFCC.
    • Its aim is to generate, advance and disseminate scientific knowledge and technologies for ecological security, improved productivity, livelihood enhancement and sustainable use of forest resources through forestry research and education.
  • It will manage, monitor and operate the entire programme.

Steering committee

  • It will be set up to approve procedures for institutionalising the GCP, rules and regulations
  • It will recommend it to the central government for issuance of a Green Credit Certificate.
  • It will also determine the type and amount of fees and charges for the purpose of meeting the cost and expense towards implementation of GCP.

Working of GCP:-

  • The GCP administrator will collect the environmental compensation and deposit it in a separate dedicated account.
  • This fund shall be utilised for activities related to the implementation of GCP.
  • For instance, an individual who undertakes tree plantation in an area, can earn green credits, which he can sell at the trading platform after validation by the steering committee.

Benefits of GCP:-

  • It allows forests to be traded as a commodity.
  • It allows the Forest Department to outsource one of its responsibilities of reforesting to non-government agencies.
  • It will encourage plantation by individuals outside the traditional forest area.
  • It will help in meeting international commitments such as sustainable development goals and nationally determined contributions.



Q.1) Which one of the following has been constituted under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986? (2022)

  1. Central Water Commission
  2. Central Ground Water Board
  3. Central Ground Water Authority
  4. National Water Development Agency

Q.2)With reference to organic farming in India, consider the following statements: (2018)

  1. The National ‘Programme for Organic Production’ (NPOP) is operated under the guidelines and ‘directions of the Union Ministry of Rural Development.
  2. The Agricultural and Processed Food Product Export Development Authority ‘(APEDA) functions as the Secretariat for the implementation of NPOP.
  3. Sikkim has become India’s first fully organic State.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

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

Just Energy Transition Partnership (JET-P) deal.


  • Prelims –Environment and Ecology

Context: Recently, Senegal signed the Just Energy Transition Partnership deal.


  • Senegal has become the fourth country after South Africa, Indonesia and Vietnam to sign the JET-P deal.
  • The deal was announced on June 22, 2023, and will mobilize 2.5 billion euros for Senegal in new and additional financing over an initial period of 3-5 years.

About Just Energy Transition Partnership (JET-P) deal:-

  • It is an initiative to accelerate the phasing out of coal and reduce emissions. (UPSC CSE: Just Energy Transition Partnership)
  • Objective: to reduce emissions in the energy sector and accelerate the coal phase-out process.
  • Launch: 2021.
    • The announcement of the first “Just Energy Transition Partnership” (JETP) was made at the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP 26) in
    • It was launched with the support of the United Kingdom (UK), the United States (US), France, Germany, and the European Union (EU).
  • G7 announced a similar partnership in India, Indonesia, Senegal, and Vietnam.
  • Funding is made available for this purpose in identified developing countries.

Existing Deals:-

  • COP 26(2021): South Africa was promised to finance worth $8.5 billion in the first phase through mechanisms such as grants, loans and investments to meet its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) goals.
  • COP 27 (2022): South Africa published its JETP Implementation Plan (JETP IP).
  • G20 leaders’ summit in Bali: At the summit, Indonesia’s JETP deal was announced.


  • The emphasis by developed countries on coal phase-down without adequate attention to the country context.
  • It disregards the crucial difference in energy transition between industrialized and emerging economies.

India’s Stand:-

  • India has refused to put ‘coal phase-out’ on the negotiation table and wants to design its own “transition plan”.
  • The talks on JETP have also stalled over differences in approaches on coal.
  • US wants to include coal phase-out as part of the discussion.
    • However, India is pushing for climate funds for renewable energy, technology transfer and green jobs.




Q.1) Consider the following statements: (2022)

  1. “The Climate Group” is an international non-profit organization that drives climate action by building large networks and running them.
  2. The International Energy Agency in partnership with the Climate Group launched a global initiative “EP100”.
  3. EP100 brings together leading companies committed to driving innovation in energy efficiency and increasing competitiveness while delivering on emission reduction goals.
  4. Some Indian companies are members of EP100.
  5. The International Energy Agency is the Secretariat to the “Under2 Coalition”.

Which of the statements given above is correct?

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

Q.2) Climate Action Tracker” which monitors the emission reduction pledges of different countries is a : (2022)

  1. Database created by a coalition of research organisations
  2. Wing of “International Panel of Climate Change”
  3. Committee under “United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change”
  4. Agency promoted and financed by United Nations Environment Programme and World Bank

Election Commission


  • Prelims –Polity

Context: The Election Commission announced elections for 10 Rajya Sabha seats from three States that are falling vacant in July and August.


About Election Commission:-


  • The Election Commission is a permanent and independent body established by the Constitution of India. (UPSC CSE: Election Commission)
  • Objective: to ensure free and fair elections in the country.
  • Article 324 of the Constitution: provides that the power of superintendence, direction and control of elections to parliament, state legislatures, the office of president of India and the office of vice-president of India shall be vested in the election commission.

Composition Election Commission of India:-

  • Members: The election commission shall consist of the Chief Election Commissioner and a such number of other election commissioners, if any, as the President may from time to time fix.
  • Appointment: The appointment of the chief election commissioner and other election commissioners shall be made by the
  • Head: When any other election commissioner is so appointed the chief election commissioner shall act as the chairman of the election commission.
  • Regional commissioners: The president may also appoint after consultation with the election commission such regional commissioners as he may consider necessary to assist the election commission.
  • Procedure of Removal:-
  • The Chief Election Commissioner can be removed from office only through a process of removal similar to that of a Supreme Court judge by Parliament.
    • Judges of High Courts and Supreme Court, CEC, Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) may be removed from office through a motion adopted by Parliament on grounds ofProven misbehaviour or incapacity’.
    • Removal requires a special majority of 2/3rd members present and voting supported by more than 50% of the total strength of the house.
  • Conditions of service: it shall be such as the President may by rule.
  • Tenure of office: President may by rule determine it.

Key Functions of ECI:-

  • ECI superintendents, direct and control the entire process of conducting elections.
    • These include elections to Parliament and Legislature of every State and to the offices of President and Vice-President of India.
  • It decides the election schedules for the conduct of periodic and timely elections, whether general or bye-elections.
  • It prepares electoral rolls and issues Electronic Photo Identity Cards (EPIC).
  • It decides on the location of polling stations, assignment of voters to the polling stations, location of counting centres, and other related arrangements to be made.
  • It grants recognition to political parties.
  • It allots election symbols to them along with settling disputes related to it.
  • Advisory jurisdiction: it can advise in the matter of post-election disqualification of sitting members of Parliament and State Legislatures.
  • It issues the Model Code of Conduct in elections for political parties and candidates.
  • Model Code of Conduct: a set of guidelines issued by the Election Commission of India for the conduct of political parties and candidates during elections.
  • It sets limits of campaign expenditure per candidate to all the political parties and also monitors the same.

Rajya Sabha

  • Article 80: The Constitution of India provides that the Rajya Sabha shall consist of 250 members.
  • 12 members of these shall be nominated by the President from amongst persons having special knowledge or practical experience in respect of such matters as literature, science, art and social service.
  • Not more than 238 representatives of the States and of the Union Territories.
  • The Vice-President is the ex-officio chairperson of the Rajya Sabha.
  • Deputy Chairman: elected from amongst the house’s members, takes care of the day-to-day matters of the house in the absence of the Chairman.
  • Tenure of members: Every Rajya Sabha MP has a tenure of six years and elections to one-third of seats are held every two years.

Election of members:-

  • Elections to the Rajya Sabha are
  • Members representing States are elected by elected members of legislative assemblies of the States in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote.
  • Each MLA’s vote is counted only once.
  • To win a Rajya Sabha seat, a candidate should get the required number of votes.
  • That number is found using the below formula.
    • Required vote = Total number of votes / (Number of Rajya Sabha seats + 1 ) + 1.

MUST READ: Role of Rajya Sabha



Q.1) In essence, what does ‘Due Process of Law’ mean? (2023)

  1. The principle of natural justice
  2. The procedure established by law
  3. Fair application of law
  4. Equality before law

Q.2) With reference to Finance Bill and Money Bill in the Indian Parliament, consider the following statements : (2023)

  1. When the Lok Sabha transmits Finance Bill to the Rajya Sabha, it can amend or reject the Bill.
  2. When the Lok Sabha transmits Money Bill to the Rajya Sabha, it cannot amend or reject the Bill, it can only make recommendations.
  3. In the case of disagreement between the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, there is no joint sitting for Money Bill, but a joint sitting becomes necessary for Finance Bill.

How many of the above statements are correct?

  1. Only one
  2. Only two
  3. All three
  4. None


A model for quality and inclusive education


  • Mains – GS 2 (Governance)

Context: The National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) is adopted by the Ministry of Education to rank institutions of higher education in India.

About National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF):

  • It was launched by the Ministry for Human Resource Development (MHRD) [now Ministry of Education (MoE)] in September 2015.
  • This framework outlines a methodology to rank institutions across the country.

Ranking Metric:

  • The NIRF employs a ranking metric comprising five parameters with varying weightage to assess the quality of colleges:
    • Teaching, Learning and Resources (40%),
    • Graduation Outcome (25%),
    • Research and Professional Practices (15%),
    • Outreach and Inclusivity (10%) and
    • Perception (10%).
  • Each of these parameters has several components, which again have varying weightage.
  • Though far from perfect, the metric is reasonably robust as it uses broad-based and curated parameters.

Learning from Top ranking states:

  • Larger coverage of colleges: More than one-third of the top-ranked colleges are dispersed across different places; they not only cater largely to the rural and under-served areas, but also provide an opportunity for quality education for students from poor and disadvantaged social groups who do not have the economic resources and social networks to study in colleges.
  • Reservation Policy: Tamil Nadu not only has one of the highest reservation quotas, but also has been quite effective in its implementation of the reservation policy.

Significance of Quality education in India:

  • There is a severe learning crisis in India.
    • Time and again this has been emphasized by several national and international level studies.
  • The Annual Status of Education Report (ASER), stated that 50% of Class V students were unable to even read the text meant for students three levels below.
  • Without immediate remedial assistance, these children cannot effectively progress in the education system.
    • These future citizens will be low on skill level requirements of Industry 4.0.
  • In the longer run, this will act as roadblock in the path of demographic dividend’s realization.

Criticisms of the ranking framework:

Insufficient quality parameters:

  • The quality of an institution is a function of several inputs and the above indicators alone may not be sufficient.
  • For example., how can we include the skills that an institution/university imparts to its students as one of the important ingredients? Should the financial health and size of the institution not be a criterion? etc.

One-size-fits-all approach:

  • The diversity in the Indian education system is large.
  • There are fresh as well as old institutions offering degrees/diplomas/certifications.
  • There are also technology vs social sciences institutions, multi-disciplinary vs single discipline, private vs public, research-based, innovation-based, language-based or even special-purpose institutions/universities.
  • The boundary conditions in which they operate are very different.
  • NIRF seems to be committing the same sin that the global rankings systems were once accused of — a one-size-fits-all approach.

Ranking Vs accreditation:

  • Another glaring oversight is the disconnect that exists between the ranking and accreditation.
  • Several universities have earned a NAAC A grade but figure poorly in the ranking system.

Lack of international faculty:

  • The world over, ranking educational institutes is a matter of debate and research. There are at least 20 global ranking agencies that measure quality on various parameters.
  • Two factors that are absent and differentiate us from the global ranking systems are our lack of international faculty and students and the inadequacy of our research to connect with the industry.

Challenges at higher education level:

  • Indian universities have become moribund institutions run by cloistered, change-resistant bureaucracies where curricula are not updated for years.
  • Students are not exposed to cutting edge research and ideas – CSIR has research avenues but these are cut off from University linkages.
  • Political interference in selections, appointments and day-to-day administrative of universities.
  • Mistaken belief that homogenization of institutions will produce greater pedagogic creativity. This leaves no room for competition among higher education institutions.

Way Forward:

The consistent and remarkable performance of Tamil Nadu in higher education highlights the possibility of achieving both quality and inclusion simultaneously. This significant achievement should serve as a catalyst for introspection among other southern states that possess a robust and inclusive social welfare framework.

There is need to examine the reasons behind their lagging performance and be inspired to take proactive measures to address the existing issues and improve the quality and inclusivity of higher education in their respective regions.

Source:  The Hindu

Open Market Sale Scheme


  • Mains – GS 2 (Governance) and GS 3 (Economy)

Context: The Food Corporation of India’s imposed quantity restrictions followed by the refusal to allow States to procure the two food grains through its Open Market Sale Scheme.

About Open Market Sale Scheme (OMSS):

  • The OMSS is operationalised to sell foodgrains, especially wheat and rice, at predetermined prices in the open market from time to time to bulk consumers and private traders during the lean season.
  • Nodal Agency: Food Corporation of India (FCI)
  • Mode of Selling: Weekly auctions by FCI on the platform of the National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange Limited (NCDEX).
  • Purpose: To improve domestic availability of these two key grains and cool down open market prices, especially in deficit regions.

Features of OMSS:

  • The FCI conducts weekly auctions through e-auctions in the open market to sell surplus stocks of wheat and rice.
  • The reserve price of wheat and rice for sale under OMSS is fixed by the Department of Food and Public Distribution (DFPD) every year.
  • The reserve price is kept uniform throughout the country without adding any further freight to facilitate buyers to lift stocks from any place at ease.
  • The sale of wheat and rice under OMSS is undertaken throughout the year in the non-procuring states and during the non-procurement period in the procuring states.
  • The quantum of wheat and rice for sale under OMSS is decided by the DFPD based on the availability and demand of food grains.
  • The surplus procuring states (paddy/rice) are not allowed to participate in e-auction for the purchase of rice for their state schemes and they are advised to retain stocks under the state pool for their schemes.

Significances of OMSS:

  • Enhance the supply of food grains: The OMSS helps to enhance the supply of food grains, especially wheat, during the lean season and moderates the open market prices, especially in deficit regions.
    • According to the Department of Food and Public Distribution, the primary objective of the OMSS is to ensure food security for the country through timely and efficient procurement and distribution of food grains.
  • Prevent wastage and deterioration of food grains: The OMSS also helps to prevent wastage and deterioration of food grains in FCI godowns due to a lack of storage space and proper maintenance.
    • The FCI is the only government agency entrusted with the movement of food grains from the procuring states to consuming states through a network of storage infrastructure owned or hired by FCI in the whole of India.
  • Provides an alternative source of food grains: The OMSS provides an alternative source of food grains for bulk consumers, state governments, UTs and private parties who participate in various schemes and programmes such as ethanol production under biofuel policy.
    • The FCI conducts weekly auctions through e-auctions in the open market to sell surplus stocks of wheat and rice under OMSS.
  • Generates revenue for the FCI: The OMSS generates revenue for the FCI and reduces its subsidy burden on the central government.
    • The FCI sells food grains under OMSS at pre-determined prices which are higher than the minimum support prices (MSPs) paid to farmers for procurement.

Challenges faced by OMSS:

  • Impact on farmers: The sale of excess food grains in the open market could potentially lower the prices of food grains, which could negatively impact farmers who rely on income from the sale of their crops.
  • Quality control: The quality of the excess stock may not always be up to the required standards, which could lead to issues with spoilage and wastage.
  • Administrative issues: The process of conducting e-auctions and other sales can be complex and time-consuming, which could lead to delays and administrative issues.
  • Does not address the structural problems: The OMSS does not address the structural problems of food grain management such as procurement, distribution and buffer stocking policies, which need to be reformed to ensure food security and fiscal prudence.
    • The FCI procures more than what is required for TPDS and OWS, leading to excess stocks and high carrying costs.

Way Forward:

Thus, the OMSS has the potential to reduce wastage, generate revenue, and stabilize prices, but it also has potential drawbacks such as impacts on farmers, quality control issues, and administrative challenges. It is important for the government to carefully manage the implementation of the scheme to ensure that the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.

Source:   Indian Express

Practice MCQs

Daily Practice MCQs

Q1) Consider the following statements


Green Credit Programme (GCP) create a market-based mechanism for undertaking environment-friendly activities such as afforestation programmes.


GCP was launched in 2014.

Which one of the following is correct in respect of the above statements?

  1. Both Statement-I and Statement-II are correct and Statement-11 is the correct explanation for Statement-I
  2. Both Statement-I and Statement-II are correct and Statement-II is not the correct explanation for Statement-I
  3. Statement-I is correct but Statement-II is incorrect
  4. Statement-I is incorrect but Statement-II is correct

Q2) Consider the following pairs:

  1. Election Commission of India :                                    Article 324
  2. Union Public Service Commission:                            Article 148
  3. Comptroller and Auditor-General of India:              Article 315

How many of the above pairs are correctly matched?

  1. Only one
  2. Only two
  3. Only three
  4. All four

Q3) Consider the following statements


National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) is under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation.


NSSO was merged with the Central Statistical Office to form the National Statistical Office (NSO) in 2017.

Which one of the following is correct in respect of the above statements?

  1. Both Statement-I and Statement-II are correct and Statement-11 is the correct explanation for Statement-I
  2. Both Statement-I and Statement-II are correct and Statement-II is not the correct explanation for Statement-I
  3. Statement-I is correct but Statement-II is incorrect
  4. Statement-I is incorrect but Statement-II is correct

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

ANSWERS FOR ’ 30th June 2023 – Daily Practice MCQs’ will be updated along with tomorrow’s Daily Current Affairs.st

ANSWERS FOR 29th June – Daily Practice MCQs

Answers- Daily Practice MCQs

Q.1) – c

Q.2) – c

Q.3) -d

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