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, 26th September 2020

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF SIGN LANGUAGES

 

Focus: GS2.

Topic: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

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Context

  • Sign language is a way of communication using hand gestures, which are visually read by people unable to hear or speak. 

  • Sign languages are unique and independent of spoken languages. 

Background

 

  • International Day of Sign Languages is observed every year on September 23, to celebrate the diversity of people and make sure no one is left behind because of hearing or speaking challenges. 

  • The International Day of Sign Languages is a United Nations-designated day.

  • According to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, "sign language is inseparable from deaf people's human rights. 

  • Without sign language, deaf people are not equal".  

 

About the day

 

  • The International Day of Sign Languages was first observed in 2018 as part of the International Week of the Deaf. 

  • It also commemorates the day the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) was established in 1951. 

  • The WFD works towards ensuring the human rights of deaf people worldwide. 

  • According to the WFD, there are around 72 million people worldwide who use sign language. 

  • This year the WFD is issuing a Global Leaders Challenge, which aims to "promote the use of sign languages by local, national, and global leaders in partnership with national associations of deaf people in each country, as well as other deaf-led organisations". 


Source: Hindustan Times.


WORLD MARITIME DAY


Focus: GS2.

Topic: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

 

Context

  • Every year on September 24, World Maritime Day is observed to understand the importance of the marine environment, the impact of industries on the oceans and marine life and the well-being of seafarers who spend months away from home. 

  • This year due the coronavirus pandemic, it's even more difficult for the seafarers as their stay on the ship have been extended, in many cases, due to lockdown rules globally. 

  • Shipping industries across the world with the support of the International Maritime Organisation are working towards a regulatory framework for a sustainable future and well being of sailors and all stakeholders.  

 

Highlights

 

  • The theme for this year is "sustainable shipping for a sustainable planet" -  in line with the Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs of the United Nations. 

  • World Maritime Day is a great opportunity to disseminate information and spread awareness about proper management of the oceans and saving the water bodies from pollution, which destroys the fragile marine environment. 

  • The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and its Member States are working towards achieving the SDG targets. 

  • This year the roles of seafarers are in the forefront amid the COVID-19 pandemic as they sail from shore to shore with cargo and other humanitarian work.

 

Source: AIR News.

KRITAGYA

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

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Context

  • Kritagya AgTech Hackathon is launched by National Agricultural Higher Education Project of ICAR.

  • Kritagya Ag-Tech-Hackathon to promote innovation in farm mechanization with special emphasis on women-friendly equipment.

 

Background

 

In order to promote potential technology solutions for enhancing farm mechanization a hackathon named “KRITAGYA” has been planned.

 

About the hackathon

 

  • KRI-TA-GYA explains, KRI for Krishi (Agriculture), TA for Taknik (Technology) and GYA for Gyan (Knowledge).

  • This event will give an opportunity to the students/faculties/entrepreneurs/innovators and others.

  • The event will showcase innovative approaches & technology solutions to promote farm mechanization (FM) in India.

  • Such initiatives under NAHEP along with Agricultural Engineering, Division of ICAR .

  • This will also help in enhancing the learning capabilities, innovations and disruptive solutions.

  • Hence will also boost employability and entrepreneurial drive in FM sector.

  • Students / faculties / innovators from any university / technical institution across the country.

  • Participating students can collaborate with local start-ups, students from technology institutes including IlTs and NITs, etc.

  • The group size must not exceed of 4 members.

Source: AIR News.


LASER-GUIDED ANTI-TANK MISSILE


Focus: GS3.

Topic: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate. 

Context

  • The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), successfully tested the laser-guided anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) from MBT Arjun at KK Ranges, Armoured Corps Centre and School (ACC&S), in Ahmednagar.

  • The ATGM successfully defeated a target located at three km.

About the missile

 

  • Laser-guided ATGMs lock and track the targets with the help of laser designation to ensure precision hit accuracy. 

  • The missile employs a tandem HEAT warhead to defeat explosive reactive armour protected armoured vehicles. 

  • It has been developed with multiple-platform launch capability and is currently undergoing technical evaluation trials from gun of MBT Arjun.

  • The missile was developed by the Armament Research and Development Establishment, Pune, in association with High Energy Materials Research Laboratory, Pune, and Instruments Research and Development Establishment, Dehradun.

 

Source: The Hindu.


INDIA, AUSTRALIA TWO-DAY NAVAL EXERCISE IN INDIAN OCEAN CONCLUDES

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.


Context

  • Royal Australian Navy and Indian Navy warships completed two-day  Passage Exercise (PASSEX) in the east Indian Ocean region.

  • The exercise aimed at enhancing interoperability, improving understanding, and imbibing best practices from each other. 

  • It involved advanced surface and anti-air exercises including weapon firing, seamanship exercises, naval manoeuvres and Cross Deck Flying Operations.

 

Background

 

"Royal Australian Navy and Indian Navy warships completed 2 day Passage Exercise (PASSEX). Seamanship evolutions, weapon drills and cross deck flying undertaken. High degree of interoperability and jointness were further reinforced," informed Indian Navy in a press statement.

 

About the exercise

 

  • PASSEXs are regularly conducted by the Indian Navy with units of friendly foreign navies, whilst visiting each other's ports or during a rendezvous at sea. 

  • This exercise being conducted in the east Indian Ocean region, reflects the growing strength of Indo-Australian bilateral relations as comprehensive strategic partners, particularly in defence cooperation in the maritime domain.

 

Source: The Hindu.


SDRF FUNDS


Focus: GS3.

Topic: Disaster and disaster management.

State Disaster Response Fund: States get to use 35% of Disaster Response  Fund for Covid now: Ministry of Home Affairs - The Economic Times

Context

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced that the limit of using the State Disaster Response Fund for COVID specific infrastructure has been increased from 35 per cent to 50 per cent. 

  • He said, the decision will help States have more finances at their disposal to fight the virus.

 

Background

 

  • Interacting with Chief Ministers of six states and one Union Territory through video conference, Mr Modi said, there is a need to further strengthen health infrastructure to tackle COVID. 

  • These States and UTs are Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi. 

  • He reviewed the status and preparedness of COVID response and management. 

  • More than 63 per cent of the active cases of the country are concentrated in these six States and a Union Territory.

 

Highlights

 

  • Prime Minister also stressed on the need to improve the network of tracking and tracing, and ensure better training. 

  • He said that the country needs to not only keep fighting the virus, but also move ahead boldly on the economic front. 

  • Mr Modi stressed on the need to increase focus on effective testing, tracing, treatment, surveillance and clear messaging.

  • Prime Minister underlined the importance of ensuring smooth movement of goods and services between States. 

  • He noted the difficulties faced by some States recently in procuring oxygen supply, adding that ensuring availability of medical oxygen is of utmost importance. 

  • He also talked about facilitating movement to ensure availability of medicines across States.

  • The Chief Ministers appreciated the leadership of the Prime Minister during this crisis period. 

  • They gave feedback to the Prime Minister about the situation on the ground, talked about the challenges being faced by their States in controlling the spread of the virus and the preparation done till now to meet the expanding challenges by ramping up health infrastructure.

 

Source: AIR News.


THE BILATERAL NETTING OF QUALIFIED FINANCIAL CONTRACTS BILL, 2020

 

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.


Context

  • Parliament has passed the Bilateral Netting of Qualified Financial Contracts Bill, 2020 with Rajya Sabha approving it.

  • The Bill seeks to provide a legal framework for bilateral netting of qualified financial contracts which are over the counter derivatives contracts.

About the features


  • Netting refers to offsetting of all claims arising from dealings between two parties, to determine a net amount payable or receivable from one party to another.   The Bill allows for the enforcement of netting for qualified financial contracts.

  • Qualified financial contracts (QFC) means any bilateral contract notified as a QFC by the relevant authority.  The authority can be the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) or International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA).  The Central Government may, by notification, exclude contracts between certain parties or containing certain terms from being designated as QFCs. 

  • The relevant authority may, by notification, designate an entity regulated by it as a qualified financial market participant to deal in QFCs.  This would include entities such as non-banking finance companies (NBFCs), insurance companies and pension funds. 

  • The provisions of the Bill will apply to QFCs between two qualified financial market participants, where at least one party is an entity regulated by the specified authorities (RBI, SEBI, IRDAI, PFRDA or the IFSCA).

  • The Bill provides that netting of QFCs is enforceable if the contract has a netting agreement.  Netting agreement is an agreement that provides for the netting of amounts involving two or more QFCs. 

  • Close-out netting refers to the termination of all obligations arising out of relevant QFCs.

  • Close-out netting is enforceable against an insolvent party and against the person providing collateral (if applicable).

  • The administration practitioner cannot render ineffective, any transfer of cash, collateral or other interests made in connection with a netting agreement between the insolvent party and the non-insolvent party to a QFC.  

  • The Central government can, by notification, amend the list of authorities and Acts which regulate entities that are party to a QFC.  


Source: The Hindu.


RAILWAYS PLAN TO COMPLETE 100% ELECTRIFICATION OF BROAD GAUGE ROUTES BY 2023


Focus: GS3.

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.


Context

  • The Ministry of Railways said it has planned for 100% electrification of its Broad Gauge (BG) routes by December 2023.

  • Out of total 63,631 km of route, 39,866 km are already electrified while work on 23,76 km is yet to be completed.

 

Highlights

 

  • This information was given by the Minister of Railways Piyush Goyal in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha.

  • "To expedite electrification of railway lines in the country, various steps have been taken including award of large size Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) contracts, better project monitoring mechanism, assured/committed funds through ‘Extra Budgetary Resource (Institutional Finance), decentralization of powers to field units, utilisation of technology etc," the reply said.


Source: The Hindu.


SHINKUN LA TUNNEL

Focus: GS3.

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

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Context

  • To augment border infrastructure, the National Highways & Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (NHIDCL) has expedited making detailed project report for the world's longest high-altitude Shinkun La Tunnel.

  • The tunnel is proposed to be built on the border between Ladakh and Himachal Pradesh. 

  • Once it is complete, the Manali-Kargil highway will remain open throughout the year.

 

Background

 

  • "NHIDCL under Ministry of Road, Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has speeded up the detailed project report work on the World's Longest High-Altitude Shinkun La Tunnel (13.5 Km long) along with its approach roads in UT of Ladakh and Lahaul-Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh," MoRTH said in a statement.

  • The statement said the government is giving priority to build infrastructure in border areas of union territory (UT) of Ladakh and Himachal Pradesh.

 

Highlights

 

  • The tunnel (13.5 Km long) is proposed to be built on the border between Ladakh and Himachal Pradesh. 

  • Once it is complete, the Manali-Kargil highway will remain open throughout the year.

  • The tunnel will provide all-weather road connectivity between Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir in Zanskar valley.

  • With the construction of the tunnel, inhabitants of around 15-odd villages of Zanskar Valley in Jammu and Kashmir will be relieved since the valley remains cut off due to heavy snowfall during the winter. 

 

Source: Indian Express.

 

Map of the Day–India missions in Antarctica

Sea Ice Advisory Study area: Ocean regions near Bharati & Maitri Stations |  Download Scientific Diagram



Quote for the Day


“I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.” ― Bill Gates

 

Mains Answer Writing


  1. Explain the reasons causing drain of wealth in the British rule; explain the constituents of economic drain and its consequence in detail. (250 Words).

  2. Explain and bring about the lacunae present in the New bill The Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation (Amendment) Bill, 2020 on rehabilitating manual scavengers and suggest what needs to be done to overcome it. (250 Words).

  3. Explain the concept of Emotional Intelligence (EI) and discuss its components and bring out its importance to civil servants. (250 Words).


Test your Knowledge



  1. With reference to the International Day of Sign Languages, consider the following statements:

    1. The International Day of Sign Languages was first celebrated in 2020 as part of the International Week of the Deaf.

    2. The choice of 23 September commemorates the date that the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD), a federation of 135 national associations of deaf people, was established in 1951.

    3. WFD is an advocacy organisation with the mission of preservation of sign languages which is a pre-requisite to the realisation of the human rights of deaf people.

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. With reference to the World Maritime Day 2020, consider the following statements:

    1. World Maritime Day 2020 was observed on 24 September.

    2. The Theme for this year is “Sustainable Shipping for a Sustainable Planet”.

    3. It is usually celebrated during the last week in October, generally the last Thursday of the month.

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. With reference to Nobel prizes, consider the following statements:

    1. Prize money will increase to 10 million crowns this year.

    2. The Nobel Foundation is based on the last will of Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite.

    3. It is headquartered in Geneva.

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. Barbados is an independent British Commonwealth nation, located in:

 

      1. Indian Ocean

      2. Atlantic Ocean

      3. Pacific Ocean

      4. Arctic Ocean

 

  1. Who is the chair of the Atomic Energy Commission?

 

      1. Prime Minister

      2. Secretary to the Government of India in the Department of Atomic Energy

      3. Ministry of Defence’

      4. Ministry of Home Affairs


Answers

  1. C 2.A 3.A4.B 5.B


 
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