Daily Analysis

An in-depth analysis of the best and most relevant editorials of the day from the best dailies known for civil services preparation.

DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS, 1st August 2020

WORLD DAY AGAINST TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS


Focus: GS1.

Topic: Social empowerment.

Context

  • The world day against trafficking in persons is observed on July 30 every year in order to raise awareness about the condition of victims of human trafficking and to promote and protect their rights.

  • It was the first time in 2013 when the United Nations General Assembly designated 30 July as the World Day against Trafficking in Persons. 

  • And the same year, the UN General Assembly held a high-level meeting to form a global plan of action to tackle Trafficking in persons.

 

About the Background

 

  • According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), over 2 lakh victims of trafficking have been detected worldwide since 2003. 

  • At the global level, the governments are detecting and reporting more victims and are working to convict more traffickers.

 

About the Highlights

 

  • The theme of this year's World Day Against Trafficking focuses on first responders to human trafficking. 

  • According to the UN, the first responders are those who work in different fields like identifying, supporting, counselling and working to provide justice for victims of trafficking. 

  • The first responders also include people who are working to challenge the impunity of traffickers. 

  • The role of first responders has become even more challenging amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

  • With restrictions on the movement, the work of detecting trafficking has met several roadblocks. 

  • But despite the pandemic, the first responders continue to do their duties. 

  • And thus UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has decided to honour their hard work amid trying times. 

 

About the Blue Heart Campaign

 

  • The UN has also initiated 'The Blue Heart Campaign' to raise global awareness to fight human trafficking and its impact on society.

  • The campaign aims to encourage the involvement of the governments, civil society, the corporate sector and individuals to inspire action and help prevent this heinous crime.

  • According to the UNODC, people are being trafficked for various exploitative purposes including forced marriage, begging, labour, sexual exploitation, organs removal, selling children
    and child soldiers.


Source: Times Now.


HALOARCHAEA


Focus: GS1.

Topic: Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location- changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.


Context

  • The colour of Lonar lake water in Maharashtra’s Buldhana district turned pink due to a large presence of the salt-loving ‘Haloarchaea’ microbes, a probe carried out by a Pune-based institute has concluded.

  • Haloarchaea or halophilic archaea is a bacteria culture which produces pink pigment and is found in water saturated with salt.

 

About the Background

 

  • The oval-shaped Lonar lake, formed after a meteorite hit the earth some 50,000 years ago, is a popular tourist hub.

  • The colour of the lake water recently turned pink, which has not only surprised locals, but also nature enthusiasts and scientists.

 

About the Bacteria

 

  • Haloarchaea (or halophilic archaea) are aa class of the Euryarchaeota, found in water saturated or nearly saturated with salt.

  • Halobacteria are now recognized as archaea, rather than bacteria and are one of the largest groups.

  • These microorganisms are members of the halophile community, in that they require high salt concentrations to grow.

  • Their high densities in the water often lead to pink or red colourations of the water (the cells possessing high levels of carotenoid pigments, presumably for UV protection).

 

Source: Hindustan Times.

 

KUTCH MAINLAND FAULT


Focus: GS1.

Topic: Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location- changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

Context

  • A recent study has suggested that the Kutch Mainland Fault (KMF), which has been dormant for the last 1,000-odd years, has been accumulating stress within and could trigger an earthquake.

  • The Kutch Mainland Fault (KMF) is the major east-west trending fault.

 

About the line

 

  • The fault line extends for over 150 km from Lakhpat to Bhachau.

  • The study also gives evidence that there were four major earthquakes on KMF between 5600 and 1000 BP (before present), a time scale used by geologists to define events that happened before the origin of radiocarbon dating technology in the 1950s. 

  • The fragile crust of Kutch holds four major active faults which frequently liberate energy in the form of earthquakes.

  • The devastating January 26, 2001 earthquake had occurred from the South Wagad fault system. 

  • Moreover, the recent earthquakes experienced in Rajkot on July 16 and Ahmedabad on June 15 have nothing to do with KMF.


Source: Times of India.


BIHAD AREA IN GWALIOR - CHAMBAL REGION

 

Focus: GS1.

Topic: Salient features of world's physical geography.

Context

  • Bihad areas of Chambal-Gwalior belt, a unique geographical feature having gullies up to 15-20 feet deep which once used to be hideouts of dreaded dacoits, will turn into prairie grassland for agriculture and a hub of ecotourism.

  • The Ministry of Agriculture in collaboration with the World Bank has decided to convert a large area of ravines in Gwalior-Chambal belt into arable land and a preliminary report for the same will be prepared in a month..

About the Background

  • According to Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, three lakh hectare of bihad areas that are rugged land not cultivable will be brought under agriculture purposes. 

  • Tomar held a virtual meeting with World Bank officials, Madhya Pradesh, scientists, Vice-Chancellor of Rajmata Vijayaraje Scindia Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, Gwalior and other stakeholders to this effect.

About the region

  • The Chambal-Gwalior ravines that consist of sharp, steep, mud hillocks stretch across three States — Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. 

  • It covers the districts of Baran, Kota, Sawai Madhopur, Karauli, and Dholpur districts of Rajasthan, parts of Agra, Firozabad, Etawah, Auriya and Jalaun districts of UP and Bhind, Morena and Sheopur districts of Madhya Pradesh.

  • This is not the first time a plan has been floated to cull out something useful from the ravines. 

  • Earlier, the Centre had launched a mega ravine reclamation project in 1971.

  • Till a decade ago, guns were a way of life here and the farmaans (diktats) of baaghis — local parlance for dacoits —were the law of the land in areas like Udi, Chakarpur and Dibhauli Ghat. 

  • The names and deeds of Maan Singh, Malkhan Singh, Phakkad, Lala Ram, Vikram Mallah, Phoolan Devi and Nirbhay Gujjar are still spoken in awe here, particularly at poll time. 

  • The Chambal-Gwalior ravines are known for infertile terrain, water scarcity and frequent droughts.

  • Farming was almost impossible, especially for the poor and those on the lowest rung of the caste ladder.

 

About the Highlights

 

  • According to a study, about 3.97 million hectares of land in India form ravines. 

  • The States of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat account for 2.7 million hectares, or 70 per cent, of the country’s ravines, it adds. 

  • Currently, Madhya Pradesh has estimated 8-10 lakh hectares of ravines with steep but shallow gullies. 

  • This area is mainly along the banks of the river Chambal and its tributaries in districts such as Bhind, Morena, Shivpuri, Gwalior, Ujjain and Mandsaur. 

  • The Chambal river system is also well preserved with a national sanctuary supporting a good number of gharials, muggers, fish and migratory birds. 

  • While the note makes a strong case for reclaiming the ravines, the cost of levelling these jagged geographical formations is humongous. 

  • According to officials, during the meeting it was decided that the substantive project would be prepared in collaboration and support from the World Bank to accomplish this work.  

  • In this regard, a meeting was also held earlier with the representatives of the World Bank and it has been decided to prepare a preliminary project report within a month .


Source: The Hindu.


INTERNATIONAL DAY OF FRIENDSHIP


Focus: GS2.

Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources, issues relating to poverty and hunger.

 

Context

  • The essence of celebrating the bond of friendship on a special day brings people together. 

  • The Friendship Day was first proposed in Paraguay back in 1958 as the International Friendship Day celebrating the essence of friendship. 

 

About the Background

 

  • Different countries celebrate it on varied dates. July 30 was marked as the World Friendship Day in 1958 by the World Friendship Crusade. 

  • This was the first time the date was proposed.

  • Then on April 27, 2011, the General Assembly of the United Nations declared July 30 as official International Friendship Day. 

 

About the day

 

  • The International Day of Friendship was proclaimed in 2011 by the UN General Assembly with the idea that friendship between peoples, countries, cultures and individuals can inspire peace efforts and build bridges between communities.

  • This initiative that follows on the proposal made by UNESCO defining the Culture of Peace as a set of values, attitudes and behaviours that reject violence and endeavour to prevent conflicts by addressing their root causes with a view to solving problems.

 

Source: UN News.


INDIA, MAURITIUS Oms TO INAUGURATE NEW SUPREME COURT BUILDING


Focus: GS2.

Topic: India and its neighbourhood- relations.

 

Context

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Mauritius counterpart Pravind Jugnauth inaugurated the new Supreme Court built in Port Louis with Indian grant assistance, reflecting New Delhi’s sharpened focus on its “neighbourhood first” policy.

 

About the Background

 

  • The Supreme Court building is one of five projects implemented under a $353-million special economic package extended by India in 2016. 

  • The structure is the first India-assisted infrastructure project in the capital of Mauritius.

 

About the Highlights

 

  • India also announced the implementation of nine “high impact community development projects” (HICDP) in the Maldives. 

  • Indian envoy Sunjay Sudhir handed over a symbolic cheque to mark the implementation of projects worth $5.6 million during a ceremony at the foreign ministry in Male, which was attended by foreign minister Abdulla Shahid and members of Parliament.

  • New Delhi has taken several steps in recent days to revive economic activity amid the Covid-19 crisis and to shore up relations with key neighbours amid the border standoff with China.

  • India handed over 10 railway locomotives to Bangladesh. 

  • Over the weekend, India announced a $400-million currency swap facility under the Saarc framework for Sri Lanka. Another $400 million was provided through an extended currency swap arrangement to the Maldives and India will soon “announce another substantial financial assistance package” to help post-Covid-19 economic recovery.

 

Source: Hindustan Times.


INDIA-EUROPEAN UNION AGREEMENT ON SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNOLOGICAL COOPERATION RENEWED FOR NEXT FIVE YEARS


Focus: GS2.

Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India's interests.

 

Context

  • India and European Union have renewed its Agreement on Scientific and Technological Cooperation for the next five years (2020-2025). 

  • This has been done by exchange of Note Verbale between two sides. 

  • The Agreement was initially signed on 23 November 2001 and renewed two times in past in 2007 and 2015.

 

About the Background

 

  • This will expand the cooperation in scientific and technological research strengthen the conduct of cooperative activities in areas of common interest and application of the results of such cooperation to their economic and social benefit.  

  • Cooperative activities may take the forms of reciprocal participation of Indian research and European research entities in research, technological development, and demonstration projects under each other programme.

  • India & the European Union agreed to renew the Agreement on Scientific cooperation for the next five years, 2020-2025, at the 15th India-EU Summit, a virtual one which was led by  Prime Minister Sri Narendra Modi from India’s side. 

  • The European Union delegation was headed by European Council President Charles Michel and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen.

 

About the Highlights

 

  • India and European Union have strong research and innovation cooperation under the framework of said “Agreement,” and it has grown steadily over the years. 

  • In the last 5 years, the level of co-investment on India-EU Research Technology Development Projects for addressing societal challenges such as affordable healthcare, water, energy, food & nutrition has been stepped up resulted in several technologies, patents development, their gainful utilization, joint research publications, sharing of research facility and, exchange of scientists and students from both sides.

  • The cooperation has been focused on water, green transport, e-mobility, clean energy, circular economy, bio-economy, health, and ICT. 

  • Additional areas, such as climate change, sustainable urban development, manufacturing, advanced materials, nanotechnologies and biotechnology, food processing, and ocean research may also be considered in future endeavours.

  • The EU and India are at the forefront of human development and innovation. 

  • For India, addressing the basic needs of its people, including through frugal innovation, and excelling in high-tech markets are twin objectives. 

  • Both areas offer mutually beneficial opportunities for EU-India cooperation. 

  • Increased exchanges between students, researchers, and professionals would benefit both sides. India and the EU share a mutual interest in reciprocal mobility of talent.

  • The mobility of researchers and innovators would be promoted in both directions. 

  • The EU-India cooperation should also foster innovation by promoting networking between EU and Indian innovators, start-ups, incubators, and accelerators, by setting up joint platforms, both offline and virtual, and engaging in coaching, training and staff exchanges. 

  • Highly qualified workers could be integrated into Indian and EU-led innovation systems industries and help maintain technology-based leadership and sharing of best practices, internationalization of SMEs, and contributing in the global value chain.

 

Source: PIB.


CORBETT RESERVE HAS HIGHEST TIGER DENSITY IN INDIA: REPORT


Focus: GS3.

Topic: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

Context

  • In what is said to be the "world's largest effort invested in any wildlife survey till date", Corbett Tiger Reserve of Uttarakhand has recorded the highest tiger density amongst 50 tiger reserves in India.

  • The report titled  ‘Status of Tigers Co-predators and Prey in India’, released by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, the eve of Global Tiger Day, revealed that the CTR has 14 tigers per 100 square kilometers which is highest in India.

 

About the Background

 

  • According to the voluminous 656-page report released by the Union Minister for Forest and Environment Prakash Javedkar, the CTR has the highest tiger numbers with 231 inside the reserve and 266 utilizing the reserve. 

  • Utilizing means animals does not necessarily share the habitat on a permanent basis but move from one area to another through corridors which connect the forests where tigers reside.  

 

About the Report Highlights

 

  • The report was prepared by the state forest department of all states where 50 tiger reserves are located along with Wildlife Institute of India and National Tiger Conservation Authority in the span of' over two years. 

  • Second place in terms of tiger density has been secured by Nagarhole Tiger Reserve (NTR) in Karnataka with 127 tigers followed at third place by Bandipur Tiger Reserve (Karnataka) with 126 tigers and fourth place by Bandhavgarh and Kaziranga tiger reserves with 104 tigers each. 

  • Three reserves in Mizoram, West Bengal, and Jharkhand have no tigers. 

  • The report evaluates the status of habitat corridors connecting major tiger populations and highlights vulnerable areas that require conservation attention for each landscape providing information on major carnivores and ungulates (hoofed mammals) regarding their distribution and relative abundance.

  • The survey was done by dividing the country into four regions- Shivalik Hills and Gangetic Plains Landscape, Central Indian Landscape and Eastern Ghats, Western Ghats Landscape and North East Hills and Brahmaputra Plains Landscape.

  • Uttarakhand which has two tiger reserves- Corbett and Rajaji falls under 'Shivalik Hills and Gangetic Plains Landscape' along with protected areas in states of Uttar Pardesh and Bihar.

 

Source: Indian Express.

 

NAG RIVER

 

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

Context

The Nagpur Bench of the Bombay High Court observed that Industrialisation and urbanisation has reduced Nag river to a cursed lady by heavily polluting it.


About the River

 

  • The Nag River is a river flowing through the city of Nagpur in Maharashtra. 

  • Nagpur city derives its name from the Nag river.

  • Forming a part of the Kanhan-Pench river system, the Nag River originates in Lava hills near wadi.

  • The river serves as drainage for Nagpur and as a result its ecosystem is heavily polluted by urban waste from the city. 

  • The Nag River Rejuvenation was cleared by National River Conservation Directorate in November 2019.


Source: The Hindu.


Map of the Day–Mangroves sites in India



Quote for the Day


“Man needs difficulties in life because they are necessary to enjoy the success.” ― Dr. A.P.J.Abdul kalam

 

Mains Answer Writing


  1. Highlight the features of National Education Policy 2020. (250 Words).

  2. Discuss the challenges present in ensuring equitable and universal access to education using digital means. (250 Words).

  3. Discuss in points the benefits of offshore wind energy generation over onshore wind energy generation.  (250 Words).


Test your Knowledge



  1. Consider the following statements with respect to the recently launched Green-Ag project:

    1. The project aims to provide environmental benefits through carbon sequestration, sustainable resource management by ensuring sustainable agriculture practices.

    2. The project is funded by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) with the Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Environment, Government of India, as the implementing agencies.

    3. The project is designed to achieve multiple global environmental benefits in at least 1.8 million hectares (ha) of land in five landscapes, with mixed land use systems. 

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

 

      1. 1 only

      2. 1 and 3 only

      3. 1 and 2 only

      4. 1, 2 and 3

 

  1. Consider the following statements about International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor:

    1. It is an international nuclear fusion research and engineering megaproject.

    2. India is part of the project.

    3. It is expected to be the first fusion reactor to produce electricity in an experimental environment. 

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

 

      1. 1 only

      2. 1 and 3 only

      3. 1 and 2 only

      4. 1, 2 and 3

 

  1. Consider the following statements about International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR):

    1. It is part of International Bill on Human Rights.

    2. It is monitored by the United Nations Human Rights Council.

    3. It is a United Nations body of 18 experts established by a human rights treaty, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). 

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

 

      1. 1 and 2 only

      2. 1 and 3 only

      3. 2 and 3 only

      4. 1, 2 and 3

 

  1. Which of the following is the first among the 13 tiger range countries to nationally adopt Conservation Assured | Tiger Standards [CA|TS] framework, which are a set of minimum standards setting the benchmark for managing conservation sites?

 

      1. Nepal

      2. China

      3. Russia

      4. India

 

  1. 1MDB, recently seen in news, is related to affairs of which of the country?

 

      1. China

      2. Laos

      3. Vietnam

      4. Malaysia


Answers

  1. B 2.C 3.B4.D 5.D


 
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