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The Hindu Editorial Analysis | 14th October ’21 | PDF Download

Sowing better to eat better | TH

  • The health of a country’s agri-food systems determines the health of its people.
  • First round of the Fifth National Family Health Survey
  • Comprehensive National Nutrition Survey (2016-18): role of micro-nutrient malnutrition
  • For Indians to eat better, India must sow better.
  • Climate change has challenged agricultural production itself
  • The edifice of India’s biosecurity remains vulnerable to disasters and extreme events,.
  • India produces sufficient food, feed and fibre to sustain about 18% of the world’s population (as of 2020).
  • Agriculture contributes about 16.5% to India’s GDP and employs 42.3% of the workforce (2019-20).
  • Farm incomes + access to safe and nutritious foods
  • The agri-food systems need to be reoriented to minimise cost on the environment and the climate.
  • This need is recognised by the theme of World Food Day 2021: ‘Our actions are our future. Better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life’.
  • The four betters represent the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)’s contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals and other high-level aspirational goals.
  • World Food Day marks the foundation day of the FAO.
  • FAO has enjoyed valuable partnership with India since it began operations in 1948.
  • More recently, FAO has been engaged with the Indian government for mainstreaming agrobiodiversity, greening agriculture, promoting nutrition-sensitive agriculture and strengthening national food security.
  • FAO’s support for the transformation of agri-food systems is rooted in agro-ecology.
  • The more diverse an agricultural system, the greater its ability to adapt to shocks.
  • Different combinations of integrated crop-livestock-forestry-fishery systems can help farmers produce a variety of products in the same area, at the same time or in rotation.
  • In January this year, FAO in collaboration with NITI Aayog and the Ministry of Agriculture convened a National Dialogue to evolve a framework for the transition to a more sustainable agri-food systems by 2030 and identify pathways for enhancing farmers’ income and achieving nutritional security.
  • A sustainable agri-food system is one in which a variety of sufficient, nutritious and safe foods are made available at an affordable price to everyone, and nobody goes hungry or suffers from any form of malnutrition.
  • Less food is wasted, and the food supply chain is more resilient to shocks.
  • Food systems can help combat environmental degradation or climate change.
  • Sustainable agri-food systems can deliver food security and nutrition for all, without compromising the economic, social and environmental bases.

NHRC’s Remit | ToI  

  • The 1993 law that brought the National Human Rights Commission as well as the State Human Rights Commissions into being is crystal clear about their role: Inquire into violations of human rights or negligence in prevention of such violations by a public servant, and intervene in legal proceedings for the same.
  • This is how regulatory checks on power work in a democracy, with one institution ensuring accountability of the other.
  • Chairperson Justice Arun Mishra’s comments on NHRC’s foundation day cause a measure of disquiet
  • He condemned the “new norm” of India being falsely accused of human rights violations at the behest of “international forces” and praised GoI for ushering in a “new age” of peace in Jammu & Kashmir.
  • What is NHRC’s job is what Justice Mishra referred to in other parts of his speech – citizens needing protection from false cases, instant justice and encounters.
  • This public body has been called a “toothless tiger” by the Supreme Court.
  • Last year it memorably stood up for migrant workers.

Aiding Afghans | TH

  • G-20 meeting – Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about the looming humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, especially as winter nears.
  • He also called for the international community to provide Afghanistan with “immediate and unhindered access to humanitarian assistance”.
  • UNHCR published a new appeal for funds
  • The UN has received only 35% of the funds needed for its relief operations.
  • As a result of the Taliban takeover, most direct aid to the Afghan government has dried up
  • Reserves have been frozen by the U.S.
  • Taliban government’s refusal to allow women to work and its stopping girls from schooling have made the situation more dire
  • EU committed $1.15 billion for Afghanistan and neighbouring countries where refugees have fled
  • The U.S. and China pledged $1.1 billion at a donor conference in Geneva last month
  • India could contribute to international agencies that are working with displaced Afghans.
  • It could also help Iran and the Central Asian states that are housing refugees with monetary assistance.
  • The Government could also consider liberalising its visa regime for Afghans.
  • As a goodwill gesture, India could once again send food aid, including wheat, grain, fortified biscuits and other packaged food, directly to Kabul.

Deconstructing climate finance | TH

  • 26th Conference of the Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
  • Media reports have claimed that developed countries are inching closer to the target of providing $100 billion annually in climate finance to developing countries by 2025 (the original target was 2020).
  • This view has been bolstered by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which claimed that climate finance provided by developed countries had reached $78.9 billion in 2018.
  • Developing countries have insisted that developed country climate finance should be from public sources and should be provided as grants or as concessional loans.
  • Of the public finance component, loans comprise 74%, while grants make up only 20%.
  • The report does not say how much of the total loan component of $46.3 billion is concessional.
  • Between 2013 and 2018, the share of loans has continued to rise, while the share of grants decreased.
  • The OECD reports on climate finance have long been criticised for inflating climate finance figures by including funds for development projects such as health and education that only notionally target climate action.
  • In contrast to the OECD report, Oxfam estimates that in 2017-18, out of an average of $59.5 billion of public climate finance reported by developed countries, the climate-specific net assistance ranged only between $19 and $22.5 billion per year.
  • U.S. President Joe Biden recently said that the U.S. will double its climate finance by 2024.
  • The U.S. also has a history of broken commitments, having promised $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) under President Barack Obama, but delivering only $1 billion before President Donald Trump withdrew U.S. support from the GCF.
  • The 2016 Adaptation Gap Report of the UN Environment Programme had noted that the annual costs of adaptation in developing countries could range from $140 to $300 billion annually by 2030 and rise to $500 billion by 2050.
  • Regrettably, while developing countries will continue to pressure developed countries to live up to their promises, the history of climate negotiations is not in their favour.


  • PM Modi launches PM Gati Shakti; also launches New Exhibition Complex at Pragati Maidan in Delhi
  • India strongly rejects China’s objection to Vice President’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh
  • EAM Jaishankar meets his Armenian counterpart Ararat Mirzoyan; Both countries decide to enhance cooperation in trade, education, cultural exchanges
  • India marches towards 100 crore mark in COVID-19 vaccination
  • INS Ranvijay, INS Satpura participate in Multilateral Maritime Ex Malabar Phase II in Bay of Bengal


Q.) Which country is the current chair of G20?

  1. Italy
  2. Brazil
  3. India
  4. China

Q.) Which company has partnered with ISRO to launch its satellites in India from 2022?

  1. SpaceX
  2. OneWeb
  3. Bharti Airtel
  4. Reliance

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